Thursday, December 31, 2015

Top Reads of 2015 ~ Post 5

Today's top reads are 5 books by one very talented author. Micalea Smeltzer. I wanted to dedicate one of these blog posts to just her books, as the entire Willow Creek series and The Road That Leads to Us all released in 2015. So here are the blurbs and links for all of these wonderful books. I'm not going to put reviews down for all of these books, I have so little energy and time to do so right now (I'm putting this together at 10:30 pm on 12/30), but just know that all these books made it on to my top books of the year for the very reason that they are so amazing and great.

Last to Know

He was just a boy.
And I was just a girl.
But if that’s all there was to the story it wouldn’t be very interesting, would it?

Up and coming band Willow Creek is back in their hometown for the summer. For the drummer, Maddox Wade, this summer was meant for writing music and playing gigs.
Falling in love was not part of the plan.
One look at Emma Burke and those plans cease to matter.
Emma is quiet and guarded. She’s still hurt from her father walking out two years ago. She doesn’t want to trust Maddox, but with his dark hair, smoldering good looks, and infectious smile he’s impossible to resist.
Together Maddox and Emma embark on an unforgettable summer of adventures and first love.
Everything is perfect…or so Emma thinks.
There are things she doesn’t know, and when she finds out the truth it might shatter everything she’s built with Maddox.
No one said love was easy, and for Maddox and Emma it just might be impossible.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads

Never Too Late
I’d never met anyone quite like Mathias Wade.
He was brooding and arrogant, but I loved him anyway.
Together we were wild and uncontained—a hurricane raging.
Then I had to leave, and words were exchanged that could never be undone.
But now I was back, and Mathias better watch out, because this bitch wasn’t finished with him.
Game. Set. Match.
All is fair in love and war, right?

Mathias Wade, the lead singer of Willow Creek, is used to getting everything he wants. Except for Remy Parker—the one that got away. Childhood friends that grew into more, Remy was the one constant in his life until she moved away. In anger, he lashed out and broke the only girl he ever loved. With temptation around every corner Mathias drowns his sorrow in women and alcohol. When the band returns to their hometown for the holidays the last thing Mathias expects is to run into Remy—but she’s back, and she’s not done with him.
Remy never forgot Mathias or the pain he caused her. When she moves back to the place she grew up to take care of her ailing grandma her heart is set on revenge. She’s determined to make Mathias fall in love with her all over again—only this time she’s going to break his heart.
But Mathias never stopped loving Remy—and she soon discovers that her feelings haven’t disappeared either.
Can two people too stubborn for their own good overcome their own demons and find the love they always deserved?
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads

In Your Heart
I thought I had found love.
I thought I had found my forever.
I’d never been more wrong in all my life.

Sadie Westbrook’s seemingly perfect life comes to a screeching halt when she catches her fiancĂ© in bed with another woman. Suddenly, everything she believed in is tested and there’s only one person she can turn to—the guy who has been by her side ever since their best friend’s fell in love and became inseparable.
Ezra Collins—the bassist for the band Willow Creek—has only ever had one weakness, and her name is Sadie. When he receives a frantic call he rushes to her aid, helping to pick up the pieces of her crumbling life—even if that means letting Sadie live with him.
The close proximity tests the limits of their friendship and as the lines between friends and lovers blur they’ll have to decide if falling in love with your best friend is worth the risk of losing them.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads

Take a Chance
I had life all figured out.
Married with a baby on the way I stupidly believed that things were perfect.
But then the good guy I fell in love with turned out to not be as good as I thought.
I was left alone to pick up the pieces of my life and provide for my daughter.
And then I met him.
The bad boy that just might not be so bad.

Three years after her husband walked out on her Arden James is struggling to make ends meet as a single mom. Despite it all, she knows she’s better off with her ex out of the picture, and so is her daughter.
Josh Hayes—player, jokester, and very naughty boy—is the guitar player for the band Willow Creek. He’s used to living the fast life, but suddenly it doesn’t appeal to him anymore, and he has his sights set on the fiery Arden.
Despite their undeniable chemistry, Arden isn’t sure she wants to invite a man into her life that has never been in a committed relationship before. But Hayes is determined to prove to her that there’s more to him than meets the eye. He just needs Arden to take a chance.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads

The Road That Leads to Us
Things are about to get rocky for Dean Wentworth and Willow Wade.
Willow Wade is used to living in the spotlight, with her father a famous drummer in the band Willow Creek—her namesake—it’s been a lot to live up to and oftentimes she doesn’t feel she’s enough. But there has always been one person she could turn to.
Dean Wentworth knows a thing or two about how crippling a name can be. His family is worth billions after all. But Dean’s always been content to do his own thing. Play his guitar. Work on cars. And geek out to his various “nerdoms”.
But when Willow turns up unexpectedly, he realizes maybe there is more in life he wants.
One trip will change their lives forever.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Top Reads of 2015 ~ Post 4

Today's top reads post includes three series. Of course, I've read two books in each series, so those are mentioned, mainly because I liked each of the books. I also mention three different Colleen Hoover books.
Slammed by Colleen Hoover
Following the unexpected death of her father, 18-year-old Layken is forced to be the rock for both her mother and younger brother. Outwardly, she appears resilient and tenacious, but inwardly, she's losing hope.
Enter Will Cooper: The attractive, 21-year-old new neighbor with an intriguing passion for slam poetry and a unique sense of humor. Within days of their introduction, Will and Layken form an intense emotional connection, leaving Layken with a renewed sense of hope.
Not long after an intense, heart-stopping first date, they are slammed to the core when a shocking revelation forces their new relationship to a sudden halt. Daily interactions become impossibly painful as they struggle to find a balance between the feelings that pull them together, and the secret that keeps them apart.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review
I can't believe that it took me this long to finally read Slammed! I had read Maybe Someday and Hopeless, but had yet to read Slammed. But that changed it January of 2015. I fell in love with Layken and Will and the rest of the characters. Colleen Hoover has also gotten me to love poetry with her writing. I started reading Slammed in August or September but then lended it to a friend who likes slam poetry. So, once I got it back from her I read it again and fell in love with the characters once again.
Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover
Layken and Will have managed to overcome the obstacles that threatened to destroy their love, proving that they are destined for one another. What they are about to learn, however, is that the things that have brought them together may be the very things that ruin their connection forever...
Layken is left second-guessing the relationship whilst Will is jumping over hurdles to prove his love for her. What the young lovers discover about themselves along this journey may change their entire world, and the lives of those who depend upon them the most...

Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review
I read Point of Retreat right after reading Slammed. I loved the continuation of Layken and Will's story and the struggle that they go through is wonderful.

November 9 by Colleen Hoover
Beloved #1 New York Times bestselling author Colleen Hoover returns with an unforgettable love story between a writer and his unexpected muse.
Fallon meets Ben, an aspiring novelist, the day before her scheduled cross-country move. Their untimely attraction leads them to spend Fallon’s last day in L.A. together, and her eventful life becomes the creative inspiration Ben has always sought for his novel. Over time and amidst the various relationships and tribulations of their own separate lives, they continue to meet on the same date every year. Until one day Fallon becomes unsure if Ben has been telling her the truth or fabricating a perfect reality for the sake of the ultimate plot twist.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review
Colleen Hoover has seriously done it again in her most recent novel, November 9. This story is well written, like all of Colleen Hoover's books, and I really liked how it was done. In the synopsis, Colleen Hoover wrote, "Can Ben’s relationship with Fallon—and simultaneously his novel—be considered a love story if it ends in heartbreak?" This made me upset that it might not be an HEA like the rest of Colleen Hoover's novels.

Promises in Stone by Amy McClung
Prom night is said to be a magical night in the life of a high school student. For some it is a night of dreams that come true, while others would rather forget the night exists. For Bryce and Maycee it was the night that would change their lives forever.
Maycee had never wanted to go to prom because of the night her older sister Rylynn attended her own prom. It was a night they’d all like to forget. Maycee was only seven that year, but the memory was a strong one.
On Rylynn's prom night, there was a terrible accident that changed their lives forever. Now Rylynn is institutionalized, Ryker and Rylynn's parents are at odds, and Maycee is stuck in the middle between the family feud and her hope that she will get her sister back one day. This is already too much for a teenage girl to cope with each day, add in the problem of for
bidden love and it's a story that rivals a Shakespearean play.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review
Promises in Stone is truly a great, wonderful book. In a way, it is like Romeo and Juliet. I absolutely LOVED it! I fell in love with Maycee and Bryce from the beginning. It held my attention the entire time I read it, which was about two hours. I tried to put it down to sleep and couldn’t sleep until I read more. That “more” turned into the rest of the book. The ending was probably one of my favorite parts of the story, even though it is hard to just pick one part that was the best as the entire book was amazing. It is rare for me to actually cry when there is an HEA, but apparently not this time.
Amy McClung’s books are some of the best books I’ve ever picked up. I totally recommend reading this fantastic book, along with all of her books.
I got to meet Amy McClung at UtopYA, and let's just that that made my day! I have been reading her books since Cascades of Moonlight came out. I have put a picture on the right of us at UtopYA.

Forgiving Lies by Molly McAdams 
A matter of secrets...
Undercover cop Logan "Kash" Ryan can't afford a distraction like his new neighbor Rachel Masters, even if she's the most beautiful woman he's ever seen. To catch a serial killer, he needs to stay focused, yet all he can think about is the feisty, long-legged coed whose guarded nature intrigues him
A matter of lies...
Deceived and hurt before, Rachel would rather be a single, crazy cat lady than trust another guy, especially a gorgeous, tattooed bad boy with a Harley, like Kash. But when his liquid-steel eyes meet hers, it takes all of Rachel's will-power to stop herself from exploring his hot body with her own.
A matter of love...
As much as they try to keep it platonic, the friction between them sparks an irresistible heat that soon consumes them. Can Kash keep Rachel's heart and her life safe even as he risks his own? Will she be able to forgive his lies ... or will she run when she discovers the dangerous truth?
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads

Deceiving Lies by Molly McAdams
The irresistible, blazing-hot sequel to New York Times bestselling author Molly McAdams's Forgiving Lies.
Rachel is supposed to be planning her wedding to Kash, the love of her life. After the crazy year they've had, she's ready to settle down and live a completely normal life. Well, as normal as it can be. But there's something else waiting—something threatening to tear them apart.
Kash is ready for it all with Rach. Especially if all includes having a football team of babies with his future wife. With his line of work, he knows how short life can be, and doesn't want to waste another minute of theirs. But now his past as an undercover narcotics agent has come back to haunt him ... and it's the girl he loves who's caught in the middle.
Trent Cruz's orders are clear: take the girl. But there's something about this girl that has him changing the rules and playing a dangerous game to keep her safe. When his time as Rachel's protector runs out, he will turn his back on the only life he's known, and risk everything, if it means getting her out alive.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review of both Forgiving Lies and Deceiving Lies
I am combining my reviews of both of these books to make it easier on me. 
I absolutely loved Forgiving Lies and Deceiving Lies! I read Deceiving Lies in like two nights. It was so good! I absolutely enjoy reading Molly McAdams' books, the writing is so well done!

Forever Kinda Love by Clara Stone
The last thing seven-year-old Carrigan "Ace" Casper foresaw was an eight-year-old Heath Lovelly walking into her life the day her mother died. From that moment on, Heath sticks by her side, slowly becoming her strength, her confidant, and her entire world. What she doesn’t know is, she's his saving grace, too.
Ten years later, Ace is handed another crippling challenge that threatens everything in her almost perfect life. Only, this time, she doesn't turn to Heath, hiding the truth instead. But Heath knows Ace too well and won't back down easily. He's ready to do whatever it takes and will stay by her side until she accepts that their love is the kinda love worth fighting for.
Will he be her forever triumph or her unexpected downfall?
Two lives.
One story.
And an unexpected journey to falling in love.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads

Flirting With Love by Clara Stone
Hudson and Blake Lovelly lead a charmed life—successful careers, loving family, beautiful home. Now, on the eve of their daughter’s birth, they’re counting their blessings. Life wasn’t always so generous . . .
Fifteen years ago, seventeen-year-old Blake Voss walked into Cranbrook Preparatory High to participate in the school year’s most-prestigious debate competition. She never expected to fall for the pretentious, golden-haired boy on the opposing debate team, and he never expected to be ensnared by the quick-witted prankster with a heart of gold.
Their mutual love for joking pretense soon leads them to pull their biggest prank yet--pretending to be in love. But when danger threatens, Hudson can’t conceal his growing affection. He’ll do anything to be with Blake, even if it means risking his heart to protect her.
They didn’t plan for their friendship to grow into a love story. But sometimes, all it takes is a little Hope.
This powerful companion to Forever Kinda Love tells the history of Hudson and Blake’s relationship. Laced with haunting emotion and beautiful sentiment, this is a tale about overcoming even the darkest moments, reminding us all to love more.
Give more.
Without regrets.
Links: Amazon ~ Goodreads
My Review of both Forever Kinda Love and Flirting With Love
I am combining my reviews of both of these books to make it easier on me.
I originally read Flirting With Love in March and Forver Kinda Love in August. I then reread both of the books in the beginning of December. The girls in these books, Ace and Blake, are both so stubborn, but the guys, Heath and Hudson Lovelly, are equally stubborn in getting their ways, and getting the girls. I can't wait to read the third book, Harrington's story, when it is released in 2016.