2 ** I listened to this via Scrib’d. It was okay. It was a pretty quick read. Though the idea was simple and interesting enough, I think everything happened a little too quickly, wrapped up too neatly. While there seemed to be a back and forth struggle with Shane and Lauren getting on the same page. The same cannot be said for everything else that happened in the book, finding out the truth about her father, reconnecting Shane with his daughter. Some things seemed to be done for convenience (Shane’s ex-wife being the one to tell him that he’s lost all custody rights with his daughter, for example. But he had a lawyer, why wouldn’t he be the one to tell him? Why would Shane not contest it?) On the whole, the writing is flawed -very much so. But it was a quick read. I probably would have been less forgiving if I had read this instead of listened to it. I may continue with the series, if the rest are available on Scrib’d.
3 *** With the backdrop of a Gingerbread competition, amidst pie baking and healing heartbreaks a murder mystery unravels. This is a pretty typical cozy mystery, standing out because of the characters and the small town with the spirit of Christmas going all year round. I listened to the audiobook and I enjoyed it. In this case, the main character, Cinnamon doesn’t stumble across a dead body more than Cinnamon to start investigating on her own. Especially since she becomes the primes suspect. But she doesn’t, and I can’t say it’s because she trusts the police to do their job. She just kind of accepts the fact and focuses on the competition. Even with that it, it was a decent read. Cinnamon is a character that is enjoyable, I didn’t cringe at the decisions that she was making-though she was slow to getting to them. It was disappointing that the big reveal relied heavily on a character, but we didn’t really see how he came to the conclusions that he did. All in all, a quick decent read. If you enjoy cozies, I’d say that this is worth checking out.
5 ***** This was one of the books I picked out for my Christmas reads. And it is everything that I could have wanted. The three sisters all have very different lives and as Christmas comes around, they are stressed as they are trying to process the same childhood trauma in very unique ways. As they soon learn they each have been affected by the tragedy and they have the scars to prove it. There was drama, heartache, healing and love. All around the Christmas holiday. In complete honesty, Christmas was more of the backdrop of this story. The spotlight was more on the sisters and how vastly different they were, how they often misunderstood each other as well as themselves. But that’s also what made the story great. You have the drama that comes with family, especially with sisters who are so different. But the great thing was that it didn’t stay with the drama. Morgan moved it forward, revealing the huge unspoken scar of the family as a whole, and then shifting the focus to the problem/situation that each girl was facing. Healing began, and while everything was wrapped up rather nicely, the ending was also satisfying. It was a heartwarming story about family, love, old relationships and the power of embracing the pain in order to heal. I definitely can’t wait to check out more by Morgan.
3 *** I listened to this via Scrib’d. I had heard of Van Dyken and when I saw that this was available, I decided to check this out. I’m glad that I did. This is the fake engagement trope, sort of. This is also the friends to lovers and enemies to lovers trope. This also has a love triangle in it, sort of. Usually a love triangle annoys me. But, because this about the past and the present colliding, there wasn’t much of a struggle in the love triangle. Kacey has been in the Titus brothers’ life since they were little kids. After her parents died she left, leaving Travis behind. Travis was the older brother who tortured her. After sleeping together in college, Jake walks away leaving Kacey behind. They come together again at the behest of the grandmother. It turns out that Kacey misses having Jake as a friend and slowly discovers that she has feelings for Travis.
It is a fun little romance as Kacey and Travis bumble around and towards each other. But it also sweet as Kacey begins to find out where home truly is as she has put distance between the pain of losing her parents. Being back with the Titus family has opened the door for a new beginning, one that Kacey is surprisingly ready for. Even though she was manipulated in returning, it turns out that she wasn’t the only one. Grandma Nadine is one hot mess of a character. She is funny and lovable. I kind of wish that she was my grandmother. The romance was sweet and teasing. Sexytimes were alluded to and teased about, keeping this romance on the tender side of hot, but not too steamy. I will definitely continue on with the trilogy and will check out Van Dyken’s other works.
3*** Usually, I read series in order, but this was available on Scrib’d. It was short, only an hour, so I thought that this would be a great way to check out the series without a longer commitment. I didn’t know it was book 15 though. I enjoyed it and even though it is a long ongoing series, I would like to go back to the beginning. Though it was short, it was also very funny.
3 *** Another cozy mystery that I chose to listen since it was so short. I thought that it was a fun cozy mystery. This was a short mystery, but it was complete. I liked getting to know that characters, though Dana is a bit nosier than is safe. There was a bit of convenience to it, but it was still fun listening to it. I will be going back and starting the series with the first book.
Well these are the books that I have finished this week. And for the most part, I have enjoyed them all. I did DNF one, it was The Elite by Rachel Van Dyken. I started listening to the audiobook, and I was excited about listening to it after finishing The Bet. But I just couldn’t get into it. I didn’t make it past the first chapter after meeting the Elite. But I will check out something else by Van Dyken, when they become available on Scrib’d.