Wilder by Nina Levine ~ Review & Teaser (@NinaLWriter)

THis is actually the nineth book in the Storm MC series, but I actually quite enjoyed it. It would be better if you read the whole series, but I thought it wasn't bad, regardless.
Wilder (Storm MC, #9)
Title: Wilder
Author: Nina Levine
Series: Storm MC #9
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: January 19th 2021

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A sexy slow burn, opposites attract MC romance with an alpha who is bossy in all the right ways, a heroine you’ll wish you had as a friend, and banter that will have you swooning all over the place.

Justin ‘Wilder’ Miller is a country boy biker with a smile and charm no woman can resist.
His word is his bond.
He steps up for those he loves and has the patience of a saint.
However, he could throttle Scarlett whenever she argues with him, which is all. the. time.

Scarlett McKenzie is wild and untameable.
Her walls are high, her appreciation for people is low.
She says it like it is and has zero patience for drama.
She wants to stab Wilder every. day. of. the. week.

Wilder and Scarlett are meant to be together.
Everyone knows that.
Everyone except them.

** Wilder is written as a standalone. You don't have to read the other books in this series to enjoy this one.

I haven't read many of Nina Levine's books (I honestly think I've only read one!) so when I came across Wilder, I just had to give it a go. I liked that it was set in Australia – my home country – and that it was a standalone read in a series. It was an easy world to get lost in and I enjoyed getting to know a lot of characters in this world.

I liked getting to know both Wilder and Scarlett, and understanding their background throughout the story. Wilder had a lot of respect for Scarlett as she was very good at her job, and she challenged him unlike anyone else outside of the club. Scarlett had demons though, and preferred to be in control at all times, so found it hard to let Wilder in.

I loved getting to know Wilder's family, and in particular, his brother Paul. Wilder was quite protective of him and it was sweet to see how quickly the friendship grew between Paul and Scarlett. I liked that Wilder was a very patient man, and gave Scarlett space when she needed it.

This was quite a good read and has left me intrigued about other stories in the series. There were a range of characters that we met that I would love to see more of. I liked that the club is not too hardcore, and seem to have good morals. There were some threads left open which seem to continue into the next book, so I’m curious to know more.
I really loved this moment, when Wilder caresses her with his words before devouring her!

I’m so affected by it that I want to look away, but Wilder reads me too damn well and says, “Don’t you dare look away when I’m taking your beauty in. I want you to watch me. I want you to see what you do to me.”
I don’t want any part of this.
Not of his touch, his words, his kiss.
But I’m twisting and turning and falling faster than I can stop myself.
And when he brings his mouth to mine and claims my lips in the most erotic dance they’ve ever known, I’m helpless but to admit I’m a liar.
I want all of those things.
And I want them from him.

Kindle Page 146

USA Today Bestselling Author Nina Levine is an Aussie author who writes alphas with a side of dirty and sassy women who don't hand their hearts over easily. When she isn't creating with words, she loves to create with paint and paper. Often though, she can be found curled up with a good book and some chocolate.

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Tyed by L.J. Shen ~ Review & Teaser (@lj_shen)

If it's written by L.J. Shen, I am definitely going to pick it up! I was excited to get into the world of MMA and to watch the relationship between Blaire and Ty develop!
Title: Tyed
Author: L.J. Shen
Genre: Sports Romance
Published: July 1st 2015

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Rock bottom has built way more champions than privilege ever has.

Blaire, an underachieving college student with zero prospects and a ton of issues (hey, being the less-successful twin of a gorgeous supermodel would totally do that to you) needs something from Ty.

Mixed Martial artist Ty, a soon-to-be Welterweight champion of the Xtreme Warrior League and the hottest guy in the Bay Area, wants something from Blaire.

But Ty has a secret.
And Blaire can barely even handle his truths.

Life is about to throw a few knockout punches at both of them. Can they handle the pain?

I do like a good sports romance, and I was so excited to pick up this read by L.J. Shen! Blaire and Ty were fun to read about and I enjoyed their interaction throughout this read.

Blaire was quite an interesting, laid back character in the beginning. She was unsure of the direction of her life and was under a lot of pressure from her parents and living under the shadow of her supermodel twin sister. The first time she met Ty was entertaining, and I knew these two would be explosive together and it was amusing each time they were together.

Ty was quite the strong and alpha male type, and knew what he wanted straight away. He spent as much time as he could trying to get Blaire to give him a chance, even though she tried all she could to keep him away.

I was a little frustrated with Blaire as she would listen to others before discussing everything she heard with Ty first. He was quite defensive and ran at every argument as well. It really didn't feel like the right time for them and I hoped that they would grow into better people.

I've read a fair few of L.J. Shen's books now, and every book is unique. This one wasn't one of my favourites, but once again it won't stop me from reading her work again. I am keen to see what she brings for me next! 

I really liked the way these two interacted. They didn't really like each other to begin with, but soon their feelings changed.

“You make me happy, Tyler. Which is weird, because you’re not even my type!”
Ty smiles his blazing hot smile, half his face still smashed against the pillow. “Yet you’re here.”
“Yet I’m here,” I agree. “Guess you had me at ‘I won’t hit you, but I’ll hurt you’.”
“You had me at ‘Keep walking, cowboy,’” he rasps.

Kindle Page 119

“Please get mad at me, Blaire. Kick me, punch me, curse at me, break shit. Throw me in the fucking doghouse and let me pay for what I’ve done. But please don’t walk out on me. I can’t change my past, but we can change my future.” He closes his eyes, sighing in despair.

Kindle Page 149

L.J. ShenL.J. Shen is an International #1 best-selling author of Contemporary Romance and New Adult novels. She lives in Northern California with her husband, young son and chubby cat.

Before she’d settled down, L.J. (who thinks referring to herself in the third person is really silly, by the way) traveled the world, and collected friends from all across the globe. Friends who’d be happy to report that she is a rubbish companion, always forgets peoples’ birthdays and 
never sends Christmas cards.

She enjoys the simple things in life, like spending time with her family and friends, reading, HBO, Netflix and internet-stalking Stephen James. She reads between three to five books a week and firmly believes Crocs shoes and mullets should be outlawed.

Other reviews featuring L.J. Shen
Boston Belles series
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The Stone Brothers #1-3 by Samantha Christy ~ Review (@SamLoves2Write)

The Stone Brothers #1-3
Samantha Christy is a new to me author, and seeing how there were a lot of great reviews I decided it was time to give her work a try. All the books in the series can be read as standalones, and none of them are the same. It was good to read about each different brother!
Stone Rules (The Stone Brothers,, #1)
Title: Stone Rules
Author: Samantha Christy
Series: The Stone Brothers #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: October 14th 2016

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She likes sleeping with men.
Sometimes it's not a choice.

Life hasn't been easy for Charlie. Her mother was a monster. And when Charlie left home, there wasn't always a warm bed, food, or a hot shower.

She figured out how to get by on her looks.

When her mother dies and she comes home to put that part of her life behind her, she finds the diary.
It fills her with rage.

She's out for revenge.

But along the way she meets him.
Ethan DOES play by the rules. And at the top of his list is "Don't get involved with clients."

Will he break his rules for Charlie?

I must admit, this book took me by surprise. I really enjoyed getting to know Charlie and learning about the demons in her past. I could see why she struggled so badly, and was seeking revenge for what happened in the past.

Ethan was a strong character, and I could see that he was infactuated with Charlie right from when they first met. She was quite forward and he liked that feistiness in her. The more times they crossed paths, the stronger their connection became and Ethan was determined to get Charlies Secrets.

This was quite a good read and touched on some dark issues. I enjoyed the way that the author brought these characters together and how they found extra strength with one another. She also introduced us to a great cast of secondary characters, some of which have already had their stories told, and some stories are coming!

Stone Promises (The Stone Brothers, #2)
Title: Stone Promises
Author: Samantha Christy
Series: The Stone Brothers #2
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: February 15th 2017

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We were childhood friends. Me and the boy who would grow up to become Hollywood's hottest star.

When I was six - I fell for him at the bus stop.

When I was fifteen - he moved away, taking my heart with him.

When I was twenty-four - he came back for me even though I didn't want him.

The nine years we spent apart, I tried like hell to fill the void.

Apparently, so did he.
Instead of being addicted to me, he became addicted to women, drugs, and money.

So when he showed up on my doorstep offering me everything I'd ever dreamed of - him, I couldn't help but think of the age old idiom: Be careful what you wish for.

Stone Promises was a delightful romance about childhood friends Chad and Mallory. They were quite inseparable when they were younger until Chad was recruited for his acting talent. Years later they cross paths by chance and that connection that neither of them acted on as teenagers, was still there.

It was sweet to see these two back together again and rekindling the friendship they once had. They both still had feelings for one another, and Mallory in particular, was reluctant to act on them. I liked seeing friendships form with the Mitchell sisters too, as well as seeing the Stone boys being excited to see Mallory again.

This particular read didn't blow me away, but I enjoyed it regardless. It was interesting to see the difficulties Chad had, and what Mallory had to do to fit together with him in his world. The author did a nice job at delivering this romance, and I am looking forward to reading the next book.

Stone Vows (The Stone Brothers #3)
Title: Stone Vows
Author: Samantha Christy
Series: The Stone Brothers #3
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: June 29th 2017

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I'm her doctor.
She's my patient.
My only patient.

She's alone and in trouble.
From the moment I see her, I know she's special.

As a resident, I've spent years living and breathing hospital life.
Then she comes into my ER, and my need to help her is all consuming.

Despite the consequences...
Even knowing I could lose everything I've worked for...
I can't stay away.

How far will I go to protect her?

I must admit Stone Vows was probably my favourite read out of this trilogy. I liked seeing the struggles of a doctor who was torn between crossing the line at work, and his feelings for someone special.

Kyle was very focused on his job of becoming a doctor until one patient got under his skin. He started developing feelings for her and didn't really see a family in the near future, but it wasn't long before some of his priorities shifted.

I loved that Kyle was such a kind and sweet guy that would do any small thing to help someone in need. It wasn't always smooth sailing and it was interesting to see how he handled the tough times. There was a difficult thread woven into the story which gave it some intensity and I had hope that they would be able to find happiness together.

My passion for writing started long before my first novel was published. Graduating from the University of Nebraska with a degree in Criminal Justice, I've held the title of Computer Systems Analyst for The Wisconsin Supreme Court and several major universities around the United States.

Raised mainly in Indianapolis, I hold the Midwest and its homegrown values dear to my heart. Upon the birth of my third child, I decided to devote myself full-time to raising my family. While it took a long time to get from Computer Analyst to Author, writing has remained my utmost passion and being a stay-at-home-mom facilitated my ability to follow that dream.

When I am not writing, I keep busy traveling. I am obsessed with cruising and it is my goal to sail to every Caribbean port of call.

I have found my home in St. Augustine, Florida where I live with my amazing husband and my four incredible children.

Samantha Christy

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Made of Steel by Ivy Smoak ~ Review & Teaser (@IvySmoakAuthor)

I haven't read anything by Ivy Smoak before, and I really hoped this would be a good read. Before you pick it up, please know it's part of a trilogy and the story will continue...
Made of Steel (Made of Steel #1)
Title: Made of Steel
Author: Ivy Smoak
Series: Made of Steel #1
Genre: Dark Romance
Published: February 2018

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Once upon a time, my name was Summer Brooks. I fell in love with a prince and my dreams went as far as the stars. I had my whole life figured out. I had my whole life in front of me. But my life wasn’t meant to be a fairy tale. Everything I knew was taken away in a flash.


Ten years of pain. Ten years of torture. I’m finally free. But I’m not Summer Brooks anymore. That girl died as soon as the devil himself put his hands on me. Now I live amongst the villains. They follow me like a plague. And I have a darkness inside of me that I can’t seem to escape. I lost everything, and I don’t know how to keep breathing in a city that has no stars.

But even though my appearance has changed, deep down I know that a shadow of the girl I once was still remains. I don’t want to give up on my past. I just need something to hold onto. Anything. And the only one that could possibly understand is someone who knows what it’s like to hide in the shadows. Someone else who knows what it’s like to live behind a mask.

The only thing I know for sure is that someone in this city is watching me. And I just hope to God it isn’t my past catching up to me.

I picked up Made of Steel and I had such high hopes for it! The blurb made it sound so exciting, and I was looking forward to a second chance at love. What I ended up getting was a story that confused me at times, some action and an ending that leaves it wide open for the next book.

The story built slowly as everything that Summer had was gone in a blink of an eye. She lost everything she knew and in the end lost her best friend too. When they cross paths again, she has been told that she is now Sadie, and cannot have any ties to her old life, or she'll have to move again.

Honestly, I was confused by a lot that happened through this book, and hoped that things would get easier. The suspense built, the characters didn't quite go the way I hoped and everything was thrown into turmoil.

I lost a lot of interest in the story and skipped parts to see what would happen... getting towards 95% of the book and I hoped for no cliff hanger, but of course I didn't get what I hoped! I was left disappointed and I don't really have a care as to finding out how the story will unfold. I was left frustrated, that's for sure! 

This was a sweet moment that gave Summer/Sadie some hope.

"It'll kill me if you leave," his voice rumbled.
"Why? Why do you care so much about me?"
"Because I see the real you, the you that you try so hard to hide. But you can't hide from me. I've always seen you. Your beauty, inside and out, captivates my soul. There's a goodness in you that I crave. I can feel the pain in your heart. It cripples me. I'm tormented by your frowns. I'm only at peace when I see you smile. You're everything to me. You're the calm to my chaos. The silence to all the noise. You're the air that I breathe. And I know you understand me, the way no one else possibly could. Because you know what it's like to hide behind a mask too," he whispered.

Kindle Page 291

Ivy Smoak is the international bestselling author of The Hunted Series. Her books have sold over 1 million copies worldwide, and her latest release, Empire High Betrayal, hit #4 in the entire Kindle store.

When she's not writing, you can find Ivy binge watching too many TV shows, taking long walks, playing outside, and generally refusing to act like an adult. She lives with her husband in Delaware.

Ivy Smoak

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Divergent Series by Veronica Roth ~ Review #VeronicaRoth

Whilst checking out a little second hand shop in a small town recently, I stumbled upon these three books, and picked them up for the bargain price of $5 for the series! They were well loved and I was excited to jump into this world!
Divergent (Divergent, #1)
Title: Divergent
Author: Veronica Roth
Series: Divergent #1
Genre: YA Dystopia
Published: February 28th 2012 (first published April 25th 2011)

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In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.

This was a fabulous start to the series! I have to be honest, I have watched the movie about this book and the book was better than I hoped. It was a great introduction to the characters and the world that they live in.

I liked seeing Tris grow and adapt throughout this book. She faced some hard times and there were so many moments that could drag her down, but she managed to find inner strength to push through.

I liked meeting the mix of characters throughout this read, and am keen to see how they all gel in the future reads. This book was everything I expected, and I am certain that I will dive into the next book immediately.

Insurgent (Divergent, #2)
Title: Insurgent
Author: Veronica Roth
Series: Divergent #2
Genre: YA Dystopia
Published: May 1st 2012

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One choice can transform you—or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Tris's initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable—and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.

This was a great sequel to the first book, with just as much action and drama that I hoped. There was so much change and this group of teenagers were strong enough and selfless enough to fight for the world they wanted to live in.

Tris made a lot of sacrifices and at times I thought she was running head on into danger without thinking of the consequences. She had a strong group around her that were willing to do anything to help her. She made alliances with some unlikely people, and through everything she could still rely on Four to come to her aide.

The ending left me shocked, and eager to jump into the next book to see how things would unfold. Things were changing for everyone and I could see more change on the horizon!!

Allegiant (Divergent, #3)
Title: Allegiant
Author: Veronica Roth
Series: Divergent #3
Genre: YA Dystopia
Published: October 22nd 2013

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The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered - fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she's known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories.

But Tris's new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend to complexities of human nature - and of herself - while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love.

This was quite the eye opening read. Being the last book in the series I knew it was going to be one hell of a roller coaster ride. Tris had already lost so many people and was determined to get answers from those involved.

I liked how this book also gave us Tobias/Four's perspective. I was able to see his struggles and what he was dealing with. He had some hard decisions to make, not all were the right ones, and he had to learn from those mistakes.

This read wasn't my favourite, but it also dragged the most emotion from me. I was not ready for how it wrapped up and blubbered my way through the final chapters. I was proud of how all characters stood up and faced the challenges and were willing to do anything to restore order to their world, and the new one they were in.

Veronica Roth is the #1 New York Times best-selling author of the Divergent series (Divergent, Insurgent, Allegiant, and Four: A Divergent Collection), the Carve the Mark duology (Carve the Mark, the Fates Divide), The End and Other Beginnings collection of short fiction, and many short stories and essays. Her first book for adult audiences, Chosen Ones, is out now. She lives in Chicago.

Veronica Roth

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