pie and papercuts

i like books. all the books

Twisted Up (Taking Chances)

Twisted Up (Taking Chances) - Erin Nicholas I saw this title on Netgalley and thought it was right up my alley (get it? Tornado alley? *sigh* anyway) ... Midwest, tornadoes, second chance love, female lead an authority ... it all sounded like something I would love.

And I did really enjoy the concept. In general.

But I did not at all enjoy Avery or Jake. For being a woman of authority, Avery is jumpy and flighty. Jake walks into a 10 miles radius and she's utterly distracted. Not someone I want handling an emergency. And she has no self-respect whatsoever. She pretty much goes along doing whatever Jake wants because he's so "perfect", and she can't think when he's around.

And Jake. Jake. Well, Jake crossed the line from confident, bordering on cocky, straight into egotistical jerk and never looked back. He drags Avery around, threatens to out their fling if she doesn't act lovey-dovey to him, etc.

I really wanted to love this. I did. I live in the middle of tornado alley in a small town. I wanted to connect with the characters and just love this book. And I just absolutely did NOT.

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher/netgalley in exchange for my honest review.

Intended for Bristol: A Second Chances Novel

Intended for Bristol: A Second Chances Novel - L.P. Dover [DNF]

I hate, hate, hate DNFing books for reviews. but I made it to about 20% before I just couldn't anymore. The writing is all tell, tell, tell. Too many names and details that aren't really necessary. Not in an info dump right in the middle of actual action, anyway. I get that there are a lot of players and back stories from previous books in the series, but if you're info-dumping all over the place in the middle of a scene that's supposed to move the story along ... it just does not flow at all and makes it even harder to follow than if you'd let me get caught up later on.

The dialogue. Very unnatural sounding. I mean, I don't know any NFL players personal, but the dialogue between the players in the book just did not flow naturally for me. Especially not when the two POVs the story is being told in sound so similar. Not exact, but for as different at the two people are supposed to be, there should be a much bigger divide in their voices, and I just did not get that here at all.

With so many of the technical things that niggled at me, the story itself was pretty predictable as well. I realize I didn't make it far enough for the meat of it all, but everything up until then seemed to move as expected.

While I loved the concept of this story, there was just too much technically that distracted me from the concept. I just couldn't get past it all to finish.

*A copy of this book was provided by the publisher/netgalley in exchange for my honest review.

Plain Cover-Up

Plain Cover-Up - Alison  Stone This read quite a bit like a Lifetime movie. Not that this is a bad thing, but that from the beginning it was pretty predictable.

Christina runs a health clinic, and Dylan is back in Apple Creek on leave from the FBI. An Amish girl is drugged and left on Christina's doorstep, and a whole slew of things happen from there. The fact that the girl is Amish really has little bearing on the story itself. Instead the focus turns more to Christina's past and being attacked while she was in college.

So many of the characters seemed to do and say exactly what they needed to move the story along, and not necessarily realistically. I mean, if I were to walk into a local school and accuse one of their coaches of something horrible, no way would they explain to me exactly what was going to be done to handle the situation just like that. There were be investigating, confidentiality, and so on.

And if I thought someone was trying to kill me, obligation or not I would not be going into his home alone to check on his ailing wife. Especially if with one call I could have a sheriff deputy/brother there with me.

Everything just worked out so neat and tidy with a bow. It was a quick, easy little read, but not without its flaws.

Last Kiss of Summer

Last Kiss of Summer - Marina Adair 3.5 Stars

*Received a free copy from Netgalley in exchange for a review.

Kennedy needs a new start, and what better new start than relocating across the country and buying a pie shop. Luke is trying to get his hard apple cider business out into the big world. They both need lots of apples. Kennedy signed a somewhat sketchy contract when purchasing her pie shop, and Luke just happens to be the son of one of the former owners, who also owned the orchard their famous apples come from. See where this is going?

It's not insta-love, which is great. But halfway through I never wanted to hear/read the word swagger again, and Kennedy's poor me, never good enough thought process was just too much. But overall the writing was competent (a few missing words/typos, and a few clunky sentences I had to reread to fully grasp). Luke and Kennedy weren't completely rounded, but not super flat.

I do have to say, there is such a thing as the "hero" waiting a little too late to redeem himself, and this was almost a case of that. The big blow coming so late in the story, worse yet when he had tried to cover it up after having a chance to come clean earlier on. I'm a big fan of honesty, and so this did irk me some.

All in all a nice, quick read, and it made me look into Adair's other books.

Neanderthal Seeks Human

Neanderthal Seeks Human - Penny Reid I just couldn't do it. The lack of communication, true communication, and the whole boss trope ... just a big no go for me. Truly disappointing.

Dirty (Dive Bar)

Dirty (Dive Bar) - Kylie Scott Having read the Stage Dive series, Kylie Scott's writing is like a familiar old friend. That said, maybe a little too familiar. Dirty, the first book of the Dive Bar series, feels almost recycled from the Stage Dive series.

Lydia finds herself on the run from a disastrous would-be wedding, over a fence and right through Vaughan's window into his bathtub. Where she finds herself face to crotch with the man himself, who has just returned home after the breakup of his band.

Both down on their luck they strike up a friendship, I guess, and things progress from there. Quickly. As the whole book takes place over the course of a week. No moving slow, taking your time here. Moving in, ups and down, and of course sex, it feels like the book should take place over months, not days. But days it is, and when the week is up they are supposed to go on their own separate ways.

I don't know, I mean I liked it. Scott's writing is smooth and mostly easy to follow. But it felt pretty predictable at this point.

Everything We Keep: A Novel

Everything We Keep: A Novel - Kerry Lonsdale So, let's see. Aimee's fiance, James, goes missing a couple of months before their wedding, and she ends up burying him on the day they were supposed to be married. At the funeral she's approached by a mysterious woman, who tells her James is still alive.

And it's all downhill from here, folks. A completely convoluted mess. A few thoughts:

Aimee and James had been together for years, super in love, she didn't throw away anything take off her ring after he was buried, etc. And yet, she waits months and months to look into whether he actually still is alive or not. Months.

And then there's the instalove with Ian, who Aimee strings along through the whole book. Because Aimee is SUPER self-centered. Everyone loves her, everything is about her. I just ...

I just probably should have waited until the anger wore off before writing this review is what I just, because I can't even get this all out coherently I'm so ... ugh.

There's a sequel coming, I guess. I will not be reading it.

Overall, interesting idea in theory. Poor execution.

Truth or Beard

Truth or Beard - Penny Reid This ... I ... *sigh*

The story started with a bang, so much so that I immediately put my Kindle down and author-stalked Penny Reid because I just KNEW she was going to be my new favorite author.

Jessica James sees Beau Winston coming her way, they end up hot and heavy backstage, and surprise, it's actually Beau's twin brother Duane. There's also some stuff about Sexy Gandolf, Catastrophic Engine Failure, and the like that had me convinced I was going to love this book.

And then the repetition started. Jessica wants to get hot and heavy, Duane wants to court her all nice and slow. Should be romantic right? Alas, it became super tedious. It also made me wonder just how made for each other the two really were. They continually want different things. Jessica wants to travel, Duane wants to settle in.

I don't know. By the end, even with the anti-climatic biker bar scene, I found myself struggling not to skim. In the end I wasn't a fan of Jessica's, and the writing that had started off with a bang fizzled out.

3 stars because of potential and because despite the flaws, it didn't make me rage!delete the book from my Kindle. And I'm totally willing to give Reid's writing another chance.

Extra Yarn

Extra Yarn - Mac Barnett This book jumped out at me last month while checking out books with my 3 year-old, and being an avid crocheter/yarn hoarder, obviously I picked it up. And dang if it isn't adorable and just an all around great little book. Great story, and wonderful illustrations. 3 year-old and I read it, and then I temporarily considered "losing" it, so I didn't have to return it to the library. Alas, my conscience won out, but not before this book became an instant favorite around the rossco household. Definitely on Amazon right this minute looking to order a copy for our home.


Frigid - J Lynn Just ... no.


In a Perfect World

In a Perfect World - Laura Kasischke I guess it really was just an end of times book. Well played Ms. Kasischke.

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda - Becky Albertalli Adorable.

Sons of Mayhem: The First Novel (Sons of Mayhem Novels)

Sons of Mayhem: The First Novel (Sons of Mayhem Novels) - Nikki Pink Reads like Sons of Anarchy fan fiction. Maybe it is. Unbelievable in many ways, and in desperate need of editing. But, I have kept reading because it is treadmill reading and I'm not looking for the next great American novel, just something to pass the time.

Finding Pride

Finding Pride - Jill Sanders Nope.

Losing Faith

Losing Faith - Jeremy Asher Okay for a freebie, I guess, but too much meh for me to continue reading the series. Unlikable characters, poor editing, and just ... :/ The idea was there, but way too many cliches clogging up the story line.


Lead - Kylie Scott :(

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