Paperbacks And Frosting

Paradise for a Sinner

16129398by: Lynn Shurr
Published: March 2013 by L & L Dreamspell
ISBN: 9781603185301
From Goodreads: When Samoan cornerback Adam Malala and two children in need show up at Joe Dean Billodeaux’s house on the first day of the off season, Joe knows he isn’t going to get any relief.

Adam, jilted by his island fiancee, has no desire to go home until he meets Winnie Green, a nurse called in to help the abandoned little boy.

When the chaos of Joe’s place becomes too much for them, Adam and Winnie take off for American Samoa and an unexpected adventure awaiting them there.

This book was very entertaining and a great escape from reality. What I love about these books is that they can appeal to any audience, not just those that love sports. Because while there is a sports theme that is tied into this series, it isn’t the main plot of each story. I’m not a big sports fan myself, but I find myself enjoying these books. I love the Louisiana setting, especially because it’s written by someone who knows what they are talking about. Another theme I would say plays heavily into these books is love and acceptance. I love that this family is made of kids that come from different places. I don’t want to give away too much of the plot away. (because I kinda think that while you don’t need to read the other books, you should go grab those as well… and I don’t want you to get so excited about this one that you don’t give the other ones a fair shot. :P) But I liked this book even more than the last one and thought that Adam was an awesome hero and Winnie a fantastic heroine. She’s strong, kind, and compassionate and that type that you can relate and look up to. I love how deep and well written the characters are. It makes it that much easier to get sucked into their story. I also LOVE LOVE LOVE that this was a multicultural romance. I think that fans of any genre could find something about this book they appreciate.

Cupcakes: Spicy RomanceSpicy RomanceSpicy RomanceSpicy Romance

Buy this from Amazon here: Paradise for a Sinner (The Sinners Sports Romances Book 4)

Piranhas in the Bedroom

17293561by Andy Dale


Pages:352


Published: December 1st 2012 by Lulu.com


ISBN: 9781291224887


From Goodreads:It’s 1986, and 19-year-old Jonathan gets quite a
culture shock when he leaves home to start his First year teacher
training at Derbyshire College of Higher Education. Living in a large
white (unmissable) student house full of lads, ranging from a posh boy
from Kent to a northerner with anger issues, he must negotiate the
perils of student life, which include seven-legged pub crawls in the
dead of winter, fishnapping raids and cereals in the bedsheets, all at
the same time as trying to woo a pretty blonde from Rochdale. Set in a
time when cassette players were cool, contact with home was a red
phonebox, but alcohol, lingerie and high jinx were still the order of
the day, First Years: Piranhas in the Bedroom is written with a great
British dry wit. Its nostalgia for all things 80s as well as its
“will-they-won’t-they” romantic comedy gives it a really broad appeal:
The Young Ones meets High Fidelity.

This book was highly entertaining. I got a view of the world that I
normally wouldn’t even think about getting to see, since the setting
was a British college in the 80s. (Let’s not forget that it’s also a
guy’s experience of all of this.) It was very funny and entertaining
though. I thought the main character was a wonderful companion. I
would definitely recommend this book to someone who is looking for
something that’s a little different than most books you’re going to
pick up. There isn’t a specific genre I could give to this book,
except maybe humor. But even that doesn’t feel quite right, even
though this is quite a funny book. The title might scare you off a
little bit, but I promise it is aptly named and the reason for the
title is very funny. If you’re looking for a bit of a break from your
normal reading and a little bit of an escape into another reality,
give this book a shot. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Cupcakes: Other FictionOther FictionOther FictionOther Fiction

Buy this from Amazon here: First Years – Piranhas in the Bedroom

Posted by juliette in Book Review and tagged with , , , , ,

Pierced

17860488Sorry for the lack of reviews, all… I got in a car accident and then Orange is the New Black season 2 came out on Netflix. :P

Pierced
by: J.C. Mells
Pages: 333
Published: April 9th, 2013
ASIN: B00CAW3G66
From Goodreads: Imagine the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo meets Betty Crocker.

That’s Pierce in a nutshell.

Pierce has been on the run for two years from the man who held her captive in a vampire compound for almost a decade. Life on the run would be a lot simpler if she didn’t suffer from several social disorders and ‘quirks’, have a ten-year-old brat in tow, as well as have two characters from a 1945 classic film living in her head and guiding her at every turn.

I really, really enjoyed this. I thought Pierce’s character was really fun and entertaining. I loved all of the different descriptions of her cooking. Cooking just seemed like something that wouldn’t fit with her personality, but it worked so well. The descriptions of her different mental disorders was fascinating to me. I’ve always been interested in those kind of characters. I thought the story was engaging and I found myself finishing it a lot quicker than I expected just because I couldn’t put it down. There’s so much more about this world that I want to know, so you better believe I’m interested in reading more in this series. I thought everything about the vampire compound was interesting. I have never seen anything quite like that in a paranormal novel before. Definitely enjoyed everything this book had to offer and recommend it to any paranormal fans. :)

Cupcakes: Paranormal Urban FantasyParanormal Urban FantasyParanormal Urban FantasyParanormal Urban FantasyParanormal Urban Fantasy

Buy this from Amazon here: Pierced (The Pierced Series Book 1)

Posted by juliette in Book Review and tagged with , , , , ,

Francesca of Lost Nation

8988491by Lucinda Sue Crosby


Pages: 252


Published: April 24th 2010 by Luckycinda


ISBN: 9781450701679

From Goodreads: If you love a grandmother or are one yourself -
especially a feisty, leggy and stubborn kind – then join 10-year-old
Sarah as she and her grandmother, Francesca tear up the race track,
team with barn-storming pilots and capture a wanted felon on an Apple
Farm in Iowa during the late 1940s. It’s one fun read and a story you
and your grandchildren will want to visit time and time again.

This was such a cute story. It was so much fun reading this because I
felt like a 10 year old again. I mean, sure, my life wasn’t actually
anything like this, but this book captured that kind of feeling. The
feeling of being a kid and thinking that your grandmother is one of
the coolest people on the planet and that you could never have more
fun than when you’re with her. This story also reads like something I
would’ve read when I was in school for summer reading and (because I’m
a huge nerd) I have a fondness for those kinds of books. I do think
this is something that children could read with their grandparents and
would have a great time with it. It’s not too long and has enough
excitement to keep anyone’s attention. I would definitely recommend
this for some summer reading. :)

Cupcakes: Other FictionOther FictionOther FictionOther Fiction

Buy this from Amazon here: Francesca of Lost Nation

Guardians at the Gate

17993262by: Ray Dacolais

Pages: 258

Published: May 24th 2013 by Ray Dacolias

ISBN:  9780988817760

From Goodreads:  Margaret C. Carbuncle is the principal at Amethyst Elementary. She has an insatiable appetite for power and soon becomes a tyrant; she also develops a desire for prestige and glory, and she knows the only way to attain this is through high test scores for her elementary school. Therefore, she drives her Teachers into a frenzy as she demands that they instruct only those subjects that will be included on the all-important, all-consuming state examination. She is ruthless in her desire to achieve her lofty goals. She happily destroys the lives of anyone who gets in her way. Some of the Teachers fight back, and some of them are destroyed by her; still, she cannot be everywhere at every moment, but when cameras are put into the classrooms, the Teachers are nearly under her complete control. But then the Secret comes, and with it, the Teachers are able to carry on, and wait for the day they will be liberated and can educate as they know best; yes, they survive, but the school slowly dies, for no true learning occurs, only monotonous, repetitive lessons that inoculate the students with certain test-ready knowledge. And then one day, two small visitors come for Carbuncle and attempt to teach her a real lesson in civility and charity and give her a chance to repent for all she has done to the inhabitants of the school. Will Carbuncle reform? If she reforms, will she fight for the Teachers? If she refuses, what will be the consequences? And what is the Secret? Public schools are an easy target for anyone who has a yellow pen or a high position in society or politics and who decries the state of education in America, thereby crucifying every Teacher in every school and empowering principals like Carbuncle everywhere; yet, these people form their opinions about American schools from flawed childhood memories, unreliable anecdotes, and distortions of the truth. Read every word between the covers of this book and you will soon know what is really going on in the secret world of public schools, for the author of this tale is an educator, and reveals the unabashed, sordid truth, albeit in novel form, about America’s crumbling educational system.

This novel was given to me in exchange for an honest review.

Okay, so this novel was a little weird for me. There were parts of it that I genuinely enjoyed reading and thought were entertaining. The author has a unique type of humor that is very rare in novels, and I found myself laughing at some parts of it. There were other parts though that seemed to go on for quite a while and I wasn’t necessarily sure where they were going or if I was really interested in finding out. This novel does offer a very scathing view of the world of education that I think someone working in that field may appreciate a little more than I did. I also found the writing style a little jarring. It’s broken up into sections that tell you something that may or may not come into play a little later on. Overall I found it interesting, but I don’t think this is the kind of thing I would want to pick up again. The humor was little hit or miss to me, there were some parts I found very funny and others I didn’t. I found the beginning to be a lot more interesting and engrossing than the second. It is something that a teacher or someone else highly invested in the education world might enjoy, but for someone like me who reads to escape from reality for a bit (even if that reality if harsh) it just didn’t quite do the trick.

Cupcakes: Other FictionOther FictionOther Fiction

Buy this from Amazon: Guardians at the Gate

Posted by juliette in Book Review and tagged with , , , , ,

Mardi Gras Gris Gris

20317239by: A.C. Mason


Pages: 317


Published: Wings ePress


From Goodreads: Susan Foret is thrust into a murder scene when one of
the town’s wealthiest citizens dies near her as the local Krewe’s
parade is ending. A gris-gris bag containing tarot cards and several
other fetish items is left dangling from the knife in his chest.

I think anyone who reads my blog knows how I feel about mysteries.
There are very few that really capture my attention and make me want
to keep reading. I’m much more attracted to emotional depth than I am
to blood, guts, and horror. So when a mystery gets good reviews from
me, then it’s a lot more than just a mystery. This one had it all. I
always enjoy a story with a good Louisiana setting, one that actually
describes what life here is really like, and this book definitely has
that, especially since it takes place during Mardi Gras! Like I said
earlier, I enjoy emotional depth in what I read and this book had
plenty to go around. There were in depth backstories and events that
took me through many different emotions while this mystery was solved.
If you’re a mystery fan, then I’m sure you’ll enjoy this one. If
you’re not as much of one, like me, but are looking for something a
little different to shake up your TBR pile, then pick this one up. I
think it’s got something for everyone.

Cupcakes: MysteryMysteryMysteryMystery

Buy this from Amazon here: Mardi Gras Gris Gris

Posted by juliette in Book Review and tagged with , , , ,

Sabbatical in the Sun

19389589by: Jackie Ullerich

Pages: 323

Published: April 19th 2013 by Brighton Publishing LLC

ASIN: B00CG6NMZG

From Goodreads: Jessica Slater would seem to have it all. She’s young, personable, good looking and is making strides in her career as an educator.
Her personal life, however, is in disarray. Recently divorced, she’s also coping with the loss of her mother to cancer. What better time than now to take sabbatical leave, to shake the blues and escape wintery Northern Virginia.
Jessica’s choice for a sabbatical in the sun is Southern California where she is hired to housesit the showcase home of George and Lydia Papas whose import-export business has taken them out of the country. She also elects to take graduate courses at USC and it is there she meets John Martin, a university administrator who, unknown to Jessica, has orchestrated their chance meeting and subsequent dates for a very specific purpose: He must gain access to the Papas home.
Later the reasons become clear but at this point, Jessica, despite certain misgivings falls hard for John, and eventually they become lovers.
John is able to persuade Jessica to accompany him during spring break on a business-pleasure trip to Athens, Greece, and then to a resort town in the Peloponnese where, as guests of John’s friend, Denis Angelides and his family, the two are swept up into the exuberance of Easter festivities.
But then everything falls apart as Jessica learns she has been brought to Greece under false pretenses, that she has been a pawn in a scheme to recover an heirloom–a priceless coin belonging to the Angelides family–which Denis believes has been smuggled out of Greece by his brother Alex and into the home of George and Lydia Papas. John has used her to gain entry to that home. Worse, their entire relationship has been built on lies, on deceit.
Denis does recover the coin, but it turns out to be a fake. That he has been betrayed either by someone at home or in Los Angeles sets in motion a series of events in which Jessica plays a major role. She becomes the focus of Denis’ romantic intentions, as well. John, however, is never completely out of the picture, and after a harrowing adventure involving the coin that nearly costs her life, Jessica and John reconcile.
Among the supporting characters, Alex Angelides is a prominent figure. Unlike Denis, his brash but principled brother, Alex is a conniver, a master at manipulating others. He also hoards a secret about the coin that he shares only when he thinks he is dying.
Of concern to Jessica is the continuing presence in her life of her ex-husband Andrew whose obsession with her turns ugly.
In the face of calamitous events, Mort Abrams, an attorney-advisor for the Angelides family, is the voice of reason, a solid presence. He also becomes a father figure to Jessica, filling a void in both their lives.
If Mort is a stabilizing influence, Bill Warner is its antithesis. A seedy-appearing eccentric man in his sixties, Warner runs the housesitting agency that has hired Jessica, though his more important role is of go-between for parties in Athens and John Martin in Los Angeles. A truly devious person, he appears throughout the story in ever-changing guises and behavior that reveal him in an increasingly sinister light.
Sabbatical in the Sun is a novel of intrigue that deals with the consequences of selfishness and greed. But it is also about love–familial and romantic, about relationships that fall short of perfection. Mainly, it is about forgiveness.

 

Wow. This book was a lot. I thought it was really interesting and it made me want to keep turning the pages. Everything was very well written and I there was a great amount of depth to the characters. It was a lot though. If you’re not ready to set aside a decent amount of time then this book might not be for you. There were definitely some moments I had while reading this book that I thought things were drawing to a close and thought… “How could I possibly have that much left?” But then the story would pick back up and I’d get drawn in all over again. I loved all the different aspects of the story, so it ended up being a good thing that the story kept going. I thought the different settings and types of characters were interesting and that the complex story line was very well done. I’ve always wanted to go to Greece so I love reading books with a rich Greek setting.  If you’re looking for something quick and easy to read, this isn’t it. But if you’re looking for something complex that will draw you into its world, then pick this one up. It’s worth it. :)

Cupcakes: Other FictionOther FictionOther FictionOther Fiction

Buy this from Amazon here: Sabbatical In The Sun

The Winds of Time

17285173by: Eleanor Cocreham

Pages: 336

Published: January 15th 2013 by Whiskey Creek Press LLC

ISBN: When a tempest throws you into the arms of love, do you surrender or find your way back to the only world you’ve ever known?

In 1893, a massive hurricane ravishes the small Louisiana community of Chênière Caminada and hurls Madeleine deVille one hundred years through time. Coast Guardsman Hank LaFont rescues Madeleine from a sand bar and takes her home to Grand Isle. Despite the two becoming emotionally involved, Hank stubbornly refuses to believe in time travel and engages others to research Madeleine’s past to disprove her bizarre story while she grieves for her family and seeks a way home. As another storm approaches the island, she wrestles with the most difficult decision of her life—return to her century or remain with the man she loves?

I could not put this book down! I already am a sucker for time travel, so I was intrigued before it even began. But even without that, this book had me hooked! I read it in about two days and it probably would’ve taken me even less time if I hadn’t had work to go to. Everything was very well written and I really got a feel for that time period and got a little bit of a history lesson. I thought Madeleine was a fantastic heroine. She was incredibly brave and strong in the face of being thrown into an entirely new time period. I loved the chemistry between her and Hank, even if I found Hank to be slightly annoying for the first half of the story. (Although, that might have been the point.) I understood why he didn’t want to believe it was time travel, but there was way too much evidence for him to be that stubborn.  I love books that show Louisiana in a good light and actually are written by people who know what they’re talking about. It was rich in Louisiana culture and history, so this would be great for someone who isn’t as familiar with that particular setting. It was a fantastic journey and I enjoyed every second of it. If you’re into history or romance or time travel, then pick this up and add it to your TBR pile. It’s definitely worth it. :)

Cupcakes: Historical_romanceHistorical_romanceHistorical_romanceHistorical_romance

At Risk: Passion and Peril at Sea

13607414By: Jackie Ullerich

Pages: 264

Published: November 7th 2011 by Brighton Publishing, LLC

ISBN: 9781936587292

From Goodreads: At Risk is a suspense novel that explores the complexities of love and marriage, as well as the dark side of racism and bigotry.

A Mexican Riviera cruise is the setting for a disparate group of passengers who dine together nightly. In that intimacy they reveal aspects of their lives and family backgrounds that set in motion events ranging from unsettling to horrific.

As an instigator of these happenings, Jack Watkins, a retired military officer, resorts to threats and intimidation as a neo-Nazi sympathizer. He and his wife Joanne appear as an imperfect couple whose relationship deteriorates further as Jack perceives his wife as an obstacle to establishing a stronghold of white supremacists.

In contrast, Patty and Ben Redford exemplify a stable and loving marriage. However, as events draw Ben, a university professor and FBI consultant, into Jack’s vortex of evil, evasions on Ben’s part and misunderstandings between the couple chip away at their relationship.

Each character is tested, but most at risk is Tracy Bradshaw, a young socialite who, in her husband’s absence, reflects on her need for major changes in her life. Contemplation gives way to complications as Tracy is attracted to the ship’s pianist Marc Frias, who shares her affinity for the arts. In more treacherous territory, she becomes the target of a hate group when they learn of her Jewish background.
As events unfold, the light ambience of shipboard life dims, then darkens as Tracy’s sense of unease escalates into full blown terror. Her focus now shifts from concerns over her growing relationship with Marc and marital and career issues yet to be resolved, to what takes priority over all else: Staying alive.

 

I thoroughly enjoyed this book! I couldn’t put it down. I was reading it on my phone because I don’t have a Kindle, and I hate reading on my phone, but that didn’t bother me with this book! I couldn’t stop. It definitely is worth picking up if you’re looking for an interesting story that’s going to keep you on the edge of your seat. I was never sure what Tracy’s next move was going to be and I love when I can’t predict the main character that way. I thought it was a very unique story, there were a lot of plot elements that I haven’t seen a lot lately and that added to how much I enjoyed it. I felt like the ending was a little rushed, maybe because I was enjoying it so much, but that’s the only complaint I have. It was very well-written and kept me turning the pages! What more could you ask for in a novel? If you’re looking for suspense and a good escape into someone else’s problems, then look no further! :)

Cupcakes: MysteryMysteryMysteryMystery

Buy this from Amazon here: At Risk: Passion and Peril at Sea

Posted by juliette in Book Review and tagged with , , , ,

Rescued from the Dark

17377290by: Lynda Kaye Frazier

Pages: 294

Published: February 9th 2013 by Black Opal Books

ISBN: 9781937329938\

From Goodreads: She has no memory of their love…

Kidnapped by terrorists and sent into a drug-induced coma, FBI intern Mercedes Kingsley awakes with no memory of her ordeal—or the intimate interlude that left her pregnant. Convinced her child was fathered by her ex-fiancé, Mercy walks away from the only man she has ever loved, determined to make things work with her ex, a man the FBI suspects is implicated in her abduction.

He knows the truth, but no one will listen…

FBI undercover agent Jason Michaels remembers what Mercy can’t and those memories are breaking his heart. Forced to keep his distance from his lover and their unborn child, Jason risks his life to protect Mercy from a cell of international terrorists who have vowed to get the secrets locked in her memory, no matter the cost. Can Jason convince Mercy to trust him until she remembers their past, or will he lose her to a man who will trap her in a nightmare world of darkness from which there is no escape?

 

I’ve said before that romantic suspense isn’t my favorite genre, so maybe I’m a little biased when I write this review. I find myself easily confused when there are a bunch of different story lines and characters. (This is why GoT is such a difficult read for me.) I was thrown around a lot in this story and wasn’t sure who I was supposed to be rooting for at times. I did love the relationship between Mercy and Jason. That’s the kind of stuff I love is a real connection between the hero and heroine. I also wanted a little more backstory on them. I think that there was a lot of action and interesting parts of the story. If you’re a fan of romantic suspense, then this might be right up your alley. I do think it’s well written and anyone that’s a fan of this genre should give it a change. There are a lot of good reviews that say maybe I’m being a little picky. I like more romantic story lines and less action (at least in the violent, non-paranormal type way.) Like I said, if you’re a fan of romantic suspense, please pick this book up and write a review that tells me how wrong I am. :) I think there were a lot of good parts about this story and I wish that I had enjoyed it more.

Cupcakes: Romantic SuspenseRomantic SuspenseRomantic Suspense

Buy this from Amazon here: Rescued from the Dark