Until It Fades by K.A. Tucker

Until If Fades by K.A. Tucker was a delightful surprise. It wasn’t what I expected at all.

31208654Twenty-four-year-old truck stop waitress and single mother Catherine Wright has simple goals: to give her five-year-old daughter a happy life and to never again be the talk of the town in Balsam, Pennsylvania: population two thousand outside of tourist season.

And then one foggy night, on a lonely road back from another failed attempt at a relationship, Catherine saves a man’s life. It isn’t until after the police have arrived that Catherine realizes exactly who it is she has saved: Brett Madden, hockey icon and media darling.

Catherine has already had her fifteen minutes of fame and the last thing she wants is to have her past dragged back into the spotlight, only this time on a national stage. So she hides her identity. It works.

For a time.

But when she finds the man she saved standing on her doorstep, desperate to thank her, all that changes. What begins as an immediate friendship quickly turns into something neither of them expected. Something that Catherine isn’t sure she can handle; something that Catherine is afraid to trust.

Because how long can an extraordinary man like Brett be interested in an ordinary woman like Catherine…before the spark fades?

I am a sucker for a hockey sports new adult romance. I eat those suckers up like candy. I mean, Sarina Bowen, Elle Kennedy, Toni Aleo…I can go on and on. There’s just something about hunky hockey guys and the girls who love them that’s the perfect formula for nighttime entertainment. So, I was super excited to hear that Tucker had written one. However, it’s not what I expected.

Tucker’s take on a New Adult Hockey romance is slower, more realistic in that she spends more time in the details than the typical formula. In fact, I was surprised how much of the book was the “before” they sparked a romance. There was a lot of background and character building. Even though it was about more of the mundane things in life, I never got bored or felt the pace slowed. I could have read about Catherine’s mundane life all day.

Even though this book is the typical trope-y Cinderella story, where poor girl meets handsome rich guy who solves all her problems with his wealth, the story had eccentric qualities that didn’t match the formula I was talking about earlier. For example, it didn’t have the pivotal “I love you” scene nor the expected sex scenes. This book was definitely more sweet and wholesome than the typical New Adult novel. It had unexpected depth that kept me reading late into the night.

Despite the unexpectedness, I didn’t miss anything that I expected to be present in the story. It left a big ole smile on my face and it’s a must read to anyone who’s a sucker for the classic boy meets girl, boy saves girl story.

STARS: 5 out of 5

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Priceless by Shannon Mayer

Priceless by Shannon Mayer was a great start to a promising urban fantasy series.

18048164“My name is Rylee and I am a Tracker.” 

When children go missing, and the Humans have no leads, I’m the one they call. I am their last hope in bringing home the lost ones. I salvage what they cannot.

I’m on the FBI’s wanted list.

I have a werewolf for a pet, a Witch of a best friend, and have no need for anyone else in my life.

But when a salvage starts to spin out of control, help comes from a most unexpected direction. One that is dangerously dark, brooding, and doesn’t know a thing about the supernatural.

One whose kisses set me on fire.

I met Shannon Mayer at Utopiacon 2017 and she was so nice and encouraging. I listened to a reading and I knew I needed to read her stuff and I’m so glad I did.

Urban fantasy has a special place in my heart because it was my “gateway” drug from horror to fantasy fiction. There is just something about a badass heroine fighting crime or bad guys with kickass weapons and dangerous friends.

Priceless had everything you need for the perfect UF formula, but it had unique twists. I particularly enjoyed Mayer’s take on werewolves, where they are less hot alpha males and more man’s best friend. The main character, Rylee, was cool with awesome tracker skills. I loved that she was a bleeding heart, protecting her werewolf friend and working to find missing kids.

The most delightful surprise of Priceless was the blossoming relationship between Rylee and FBI agent O’shea. The tension between them was like electricity popping off the page. I’m a sucker for the forbidden relationship trope. Their relationship was built at a natural, believable pace and didn’t go all the way in one book. There is still plenty of growth and I’m glad that there is more room for the relationship to mature in the next book.

Overall, I really enjoyed this one. If you like Patricia Briggs or Kim Harrison, give Shannon Mayer a try. I’m definitely going to continue the series.

STARS: 4 out of 5

Mini-Reviews: Hidden Legacy Series, Trust, Cake and Breath of Fire

Hello world! I’m back after an unintentional hiatus.

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My sister got married. I got the flu. And, ya know, decided reading and watching TV was more fun than writing blog posts. But I’m back after a much needed pep talk.

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I’ve read so many books over the past month so I’ve decided to do some mini-reviews right out of the gate and do a little catching up. Here goes!

The Hidden Legacy Series by Ilona Andrews

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Woo! I’m still fanning myself after this scorcher of a romance. I devoured all three of these books back-to-back, and if you’re interested in reading them, I’d recommend you make time for all three because they are that addicting. I’m a huge fan of Ilona Andrews but I’d argue this series is her best yet. The magic. The mayhem. The hot as hell male lead Mad Rogan. Nevada is a kick ass heroine with a cool-as-hell family, including her badass grandmother. Just read it, people. If you like Urban Fantasy, you won’t regret it.

STARS: 5 out of 5

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Trust by Kylie Scott

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Kylie Scott is an auto-buy author for me. I LOVE her work, so when Trust came out and it didn’t meet my expectations, I was beyond disappointed. It had so much promise. The premise was intriguing, her main character showed love to curvy girls everywhere, and the love interest was a complex bad boy. Unfortunately, the story was a bit far-fetched and I didn’t buy it. The plot built but the climax never came. The story fell flat for me. I am so disappointed I didn’t like it more.

STARS: 3 out of 5

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Cake by J. Bengtsson

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I took a chance on Cake after reading rave reviews and downloaded the audiobook, because let’s face it, I’d never knowingly read a story named “Cake.” Granted, I did end up loving the inspiration for the title. This story was such a surprise. It was the sweetest most engaging love story. I hung on every word. However, this novel had a kryptonite, and it was pacing. At times, the story was perfect and I was enthralled swooning and smiling, and then the story would drag and I’d have to force myself through. And with it being an audiobook, it’s hard to force yourself to listen through the slow, boring parts. It took me way longer than normal to listen to this entire novel. However, it had enough good parts to outweigh the bad. I’m hoping this author pays more attention to pacing in her future novels, because her writing and story-crafting show promise.

STARS: 3.5 out of 5

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Breath of Fire by Amanda Bouchet

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The Kingmaker Chronicles is a fantasy romance that shouldn’t be missed. Where has Amanda Bouchet been all my life? I devoured this sequel and was left squalling for the third and final book that won’t be out til 2018. Cat and Griffin are #relationshipgoals, and the magic and setting had me daydreaming about this world long after the last page had been read. It was exciting adventure that left my blood pumping in more ways than one.

STARS: 5 out of 5

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