Monday, December 7, 2015

Review: Wedding Haters by Melissa Baldwin

Title:  Wedding Haters
Author:  Melissa Baldwin
Genre:  Chick Lit
Publisher:  n/a
Release Date:  March 4, 2015
File Size/Pages:  539 KB/243 pgs.
Source:  CLP Blog Tours

My Rating:  4/5

Summary:  The exquisite dress, the dazzling menu, the family drama . . . It’s the day every girl dreams of, and Madison Wales is no exception. Her wedding plans seem to be going perfectly thanks to her very talented wedding planner, Sienna Harris. That is, until her grandmother and her two overachieving, bullying cousins suddenly want to become very involved in her big day. But . . . why?
Madison’s perfect wedding dreams are dashed as things slowly start to unravel. With family drama in her midst, she wonders if her cousins are behind each disaster or if she has truly become a paranoid bridezilla.
Will Madison be able to withstand all of the pressure and finally stand up for herself? The idea of eloping with her fiancé, Cole, is looking better everyday, even if it means leaving her dream wedding behind. Will she make the right choice?

Review:  I was given a copy of this novel in exchange for my honest opinion, and it was an enjoyable read. Although this is the second novel in the Event to Remember series, and I've never read the first book, it didn't affect my rate for Wedding Haters. Melissa Baldwin does an amazing job painting the picture of what life is like for Madison Wales. She's a hairdresser, her fiancé is a comedian, and her best friend is an amazing wedding planner. So what could go wrong with planning her wedding, right? Wrong! First, she's put on the spot by her grandmother, telling her she needs to put her cousins in the wedding. Her cousins bullied her when they were younger, but of course the grandmother always took their side. Then, things start going awry with the once perfect wedding. Although this was a light, fun read, I love the slight suspense that was also present in the novel. It was a little hard for me to get invested in Madison's story at first, but once I finally did, the story was actually an enjoyable read, and I'd recommend it to readers.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Interview with Savannah Page

Savannah Page is the author of the seven-novel When Girlfriends collection, heartfelt women's fiction that celebrates friendship, love, and life sprinkled with drama and humor. When she isn't writing, Savannah enjoys a good book with a latte and jazz tunes, Pilates, and exploring her home of Berlin as an American expat.

Thank you so much for inviting me to your blog, Josie Ann! It’s been a lot of fun touring with you through the series. Readers, don’t forget to enter the BIG Rafflecopter giveaway below!

Q. What inspired the plot for "When Girlfriends Find Love”?

For the When Girlfriends series I knew straight away that I wanted to have each of the six girls tell their story individually. Sophie opened the series with Break Hearts, and since I love the concept of full circle (and it was about time that girl got her broken heart taken care of!) the rest of Sophie’s story would close the series. Her various romances were a lot of fun to orchestrate from one novel to the next, so come Find Love I was very ready to give her that happily ever after. The big inspirational piece for this particular novel was the final chapter. From there I built backwards and had a lot of fun with this one!

Q. Who would you cast as the girlfriends in the series?

Not an easy task, but I’ll try my best. I usually don’t have an actor in my mind when creating a character, but for Sophie, Claire, and Jackie I did. A 1980s Paulina Porizkova (Her Alibi) is definitely Sophie. Kate Hudson (Almost Famous) is Claire. Jackie’s a young, bleach-blonde, pixie-cute Kirsten Dunst...just more tanning-bed-orange. Jenna Fischer would be a great Robin, and Jennifer Garner could be Lara. Emily’s a really tough one, but Ginnifer Goodwin could probably be a good match. She’d just have to go for the dreadlocks now and then and show her wild side!

Q. Back in our last interview, you said you could probably most relate to Sophie. Would you say that you still relate to Sophie the most, or has that changed?

Absolutely. For all her OCDness, love of control and plans and schedules, and eagerness to keep things together (including friendships that she maintains from across the globe), Sophie’s my girl. We’re not carbon copies, that’s for sure, but when I created her character and wrote the first chapter of both Break Hearts and Find Love I found myself nodding a lot and thinking, “Yes, I totally get her!” (Now if I can just bake like her…)

Q. Describe your writing process when it came to writing this series.

Before I created a single character I knew I wanted to do a large series about a group of six eclectic best friends during those out-of-college years. I was inspired by my own group of girlfriends, all of us slowly moving away from our college town, but still keeping up those friendships. Taking on such a large series with so many main characters, and having that real-life inspiration from my own female friendships really helped me complete the series relatively quickly. While writing one novel I would collect ideas for the subsequent ones, keeping track of dialogue and scenes I’d use either in the next chapter or up to two or three novels later. Kind of like writing one gigantic story. It was a blast—but a lot of hard work—creating such a long narrative. But boy have I really come to know these six girls!

Q. Would you say that you're more of a plotter or a pantser?

Definitely a plotter! I go crazy with Post-Its all over the floor and walls when I piece together the plot.

Q. Out of all the books in the series, which book did you enjoy writing the most?

I’ve got a soft spot for Jackie. She’s wonderfully insane, a lovely damaged character with so much drama. How can I not have fun writing from her perspective? Her story (Let Go) was a lot of fun concocting. But of all seven novels Find Love was so much FUN! I got to go to Paris; got to hang out with my male character crushes; I was surrounded by delicious desserts and coffee; and the romantic, sweep-you-off-your-feet kind of scenes in this novel? What’s not to love about that?

Q. What were some of your favorite things to snack on while writing this novel?

Almonds and pistachios are probably my biggest writing snacks, but I’m not a big snacker when writing, honestly. All that yumminess is a bit distracting. I do, however, have a good three or four drinks at the ready when I’m writing. I never realized I’m obsessed with beverages until one of my ex-co-workers said she never saw anyone before me who was never without either a beverage in her hand or on her desk…and so many of them. Variety’s the spice of life, right?

Q. What can your fans expect next?

This spring I came out with my first stand-alone novel, a women’s fiction piece (A Sister’s Place) that I think is my best piece of work. It’s definitely the one that stole my heart! Right now I’m working on an entirely new project that I am very excited (and nervous) about. It’s a trilogy and it’s a New Adult Contemporary Romance. Something very new, tons of fun, seriously dramatic, and a collection that I hope my readers will enjoy. I’m also planning on revisiting the Girlfriends but I’m not sure when, how, or what! You’ll just have to wait and see...

Q. What advice do you have for aspiring authors?

"Keep on writing, no matter what” is a classic, hard and fast rule. But you’ve probably already heard that. So my favorite and best piece of advice? I once heard Sophie Kinsella say that an author should always write the book she wants to read. I couldn’t agree more! Not everyone will like everything you write, that’s a guarantee. Your fans won’t even like everything you write, that’s okay. Some books and characters will be more favored than others, totally normal. But so long as you stay true to the story and write the book that you really want to read, you can’t go wrong. When I wrote Lara’s book (Make Choices) I knew I’d make many readers angry with the married-man-cheating scenario, but that story hit me like a brick and I was driven to write it, no matter what. It was the story that was inside me, that I had to tell, and the one I really wanted to read! Helpful and experienced criticism and tips should not be ignored, and aiming to please readers is definitely important (especially your awesome fans), but always, always stay true to your story above all else. (Plus, writing the book you want to read is just so much fun!)

Sophie Wharton is in control. Whether life is going according to plan or throwing her for a loop, Sophie is determined to remain calm and in charge. It's no wonder she's the successful owner of one of Seattle's most charming cafés, The Cup and the Cake. Her lemon meringue cupcakes, petite French treats, and cappuccinos always leave customers coming back for more. Naturally, her camaraderie of college girlfriends are still thick as thieves a decade later. And it should come as no surprise that she has her own cozy apartment in the hip part of town and grand goals for her future.

Of course Sophie has had her share of rough times, and recently some unexpected surprises have emerged. Her best friend Claire has moved across the state, the demands of her café are mounting, and some major changes among her circle of friends are shaking things up. But it's nothing Sophie can't handle.

When it comes to her love life, however, Single Sophie's at a loss. She approaches it the way she does nearly everything in life--by trying to call all the shots. But love doesn't work that way, and as Sophie examines her past relationships--thinking back on romantic trysts in Paris; college mistakes; the relationship responsible for the Year of Heartbreak--she must come to accept that love is an unpredictable, untamable, and often unexpected force.

This is the witty and heartwarming conclusion of the When Girlfriends collection, a novel about examining the past, moving forward, and following your heart. It's a story about friendship, relationships, acceptance, and learning to love again. About what happens when girlfriends find love.

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Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Cover Reveal: No Interest in Love by Cassie Mae

Because I love GIFs, and my main character in this book, Jace, is obsessed with How I Met Your Mother, we're gonna do the cover reveal with a series of HIMYM GIFs :D

There's this guy; this actor...

And his balls are so very blue.

He wants that problem rectified. And he has his chance when his agent... this girl here:

...lands him an audition for the next big Rom Com with an A-list actress who is known for really getting to "know" her co-stars. 

The audition's on set in Alabama. He's in LA. Flights are grounded, car engine gets flooded, and the fecal matter pretty much hits the fan. 

Now he has to get across the country with the girl who drives him nuts. 

A girl who doesn't know how to chill out.

A girl who doesn't understand that he's not interested in a relationship now... or ever. 

A girl who---as he spends more and more time with her---goes from this:

To this:

And now he has a few more roads in front of him. Play it safe and keep heading toward Casual Fling Lane...

Or take a chance on the unfamiliar feelings that lead down Relationship Avenue. 

And *plays drum roll* here's the cover for it! 

Also the official blurb ;) 

Readers of Emma Chase are sure to fall for bestselling author Cassie Mae’s All About Love series! In No Interest in Love, Hollywood’s hottest young actor hits the road to chase his big break—and gets caught in a steamy love triangle.

When Jace Carver snags a minor part in his buddy’s zombie flick, he suddenly starts getting noticed all over the place. Even Hollywood megastar Carletta Ocean—known for her extensive “research” with her leading men—wants Jace for her new rom-com. The role could be a game-changer . . . if Jace nails the audition.

As Jace’s agent, Shaylene Kwak is all business—and isn’t about to let her favorite client blow this opportunity. Ever since college, Shay has been immune to Jace’s charm and rock hard body. But long hours in tight company have a way of wearing down even the best defenses. And when their platonic teasing turns into serious flirting, Jace and Shay are no longer able to resist what’s been right in front of them the whole time.

Shay knows Jace’s love-’em-and-leave-’em history with women. She’s not about to be just another notch in his belt. And it’s true, Jace has never wanted more than a one-night stand—until now. But at the end of the line, he’s got a choice: sleep with Carletta and seal the deal . . . or risk his career for a shot at true love with Shay.

Praise for Cassie Mae

“Clever, romantic, and entertaining . . . Cassie Mae is a natural storyteller.”—USA Today bestselling author Tiffany King, on Doing It for Love
“Cassie Mae is awesome! The perfect balance between laugh-out-loud funny and achingly poignant, The Real Thing is the ultimate escapist read. I didn’t want it to end!”—Lauren Layne, USA Today bestselling author of Crushed

“Cassie Mae’s writing is fresh and original!”—Rachel Morgan, author of the Creepy Hollow series
“A fabulous author who tugs on your heart strings as if she owns them.”—Jade Hart, author of Coffee and Cockpits

Cassie Mae (who dons the name Becca Ann on occasion) is the author of a few hundred—okay, maybe not that many—books. Since writing her bestselling debut, Reasons I Fell for the Funny Fat Friend, she has published books with Random House, Swoon Romance, and Tulip Romance. She has a favorite of all her babies, but no, she won’t tell you what it is (mainly because it changes depending on the day). Along with writing, Cassie likes to binge-watch Teen Wolf and The Big Bang Theory. She can quote Harry Potter lines quick as a whip. And she likes kissing her hubby, but only if his facial hair is trimmed. She also likes cheesecake to a very obsessive degree.

Comes out December 22nd, but you can pre-order now!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Excerpt: Rock Star's Girl by Jennifer Farwell

“Are you looking for another date?” Jesse’s voice came from behind her.

She brushed aside a lock of her hair and turned around to look at him. “Nah, I was going to give you about thirty more seconds. After that, you might have been history.”

This is going to be trouble, she thought, taking him in, and she had little doubt that he knew it too. Dressed in a black button-down shirt, casually distressed jeans, and black leather boots, his dark hair perfectly in place, he exuded confidence and charm.

“I would have been crushed if someone had stolen you away.” He flashed her the easy grin that always made her smile and reached for her hand. Together, they walked the few steps over to where the hostess stood, near the restaurant’s entrance.

They were seated at a quiet corner table, given a cozy feel by the glow of white tea lights. Emily always looked forward to having dinner here with Jesse during the few times a year he made it out to L.A. She knew she was silly to think of it as their place, but sitting across from him at the table, studying his face in the flickering candlelight, she liked the idea that any outside observer might think they were a couple enjoying a romantic dinner for two.

“So what do you think?” he asked her, scanning the dinner menu he held in his hands.

“Hmm?” She blinked and tried to pull her thoughts into the present moment. “About what?”

“Dinner.” He looked up at her and grinned. “Or you could just keep staring at me like that. It’s kind of hot.”

She flushed. “I wasn’t staring at you. I was just…” She paused for a moment, searching for a word. “Thinking,” she finished.

He raised his eyebrows. “I’d do a lot of things to hear those thoughts.”

Same old Jesse, she thought. He probably practiced being seductive even while talking in his sleep.

“Hey now,” she protested. “I’m a girl, if you’ve forgotten. I’m sure my thoughts are pretty much never what you think they are.”

“Well, that’s a shame,” he said, the slightest hint of a smirk appearing on his lips. “So what were they, then?”

She ignored his question and picked up her menu. “Are you up for sushi rolls tonight?” she asked, positioning the menu to conceal her face.

“Absolutely,” he said. “Which ones do you feel like?”

“Definitely the salmon roll. I’ve been craving it since the last time I was here.”

“Isn’t salmon an aphrodisiac?” he asked. She lowered her menu to look at him. He raised his eyebrows again.

I was definitely right about tonight being trouble, she thought, suspecting she would have to phrase her answer carefully. “Since when do you even know what that word means?” she teased, hoping to steer the conversation in another direction before it got out of hand, as conversations with Jesse often did.

“I can see you’re impressed,” he said. She detected a note of mischief in his voice. “Do you know what other word I know?”

“Can’t even begin to guess, but go ahead, Webster’s.” She did her best to sound disinterested, but she steeled herself for what was coming.


“Sure you do. Use it in a sentence.” She set her menu down on the table.

“Your hair smells amazing. The scent is almost as powerful as pheromones.” A look of triumph spread across his face.

She felt her mouth twitch and coughed to cover up a laugh. “I’d bet my dinner that Cole taught you that one to help you pick up girls.”

Cole Brooklyn was the lead singer of Ashes of Brooklyn and Jesse’s best friend. He was also Jesse’s wingman when it came to hitting on women, as Emily had witnessed on a few occasions.

“Why? I can’t be pretty and smart?” Jesse countered, a little too loudly. A middle-aged woman seated at the table next to them looked over and giggled.

“You said it, not me,” she replied, ignoring their audience.


She shook her head, but she was smiling. “Have you ever heard the term ‘guitarded?’”

He put a hand over his heart, his face contorted into a pained expression as if she’d wounded him. “You have so much animosity toward musicians, Em. Or is that being directed to all guys in general?”

“Would it make you feel better if it was?” she asked, raising her wine glass to her lips.

He studied her for a moment, then a look of realization settled across his face. “You’re not getting any, are you?”

She was thankful that she hadn’t yet begun swallowing her sip of wine. It gave her time to compose her thoughts and let the drops of liquid slide down her throat without choking on them.

“Getting any what?” Leave it to Jesse to bring this up.

“As if you’re twelve.” His expression reminded Emily of a tiger waiting to pounce. From experience she knew he probably was, since his favorite pastime seemed to be interrogating her about her love life. For some reason she was never prepared with witty answers.

“No really. That’s quite the question there, Mr. Cinder. Getting any what?” Her hazel eyes shone with a defiant look that dared him to put what he was thinking into words.

“Affection.” He kept his eyes fixed on her.

“Define affection,” she challenged, feeling the heat rising in her cheeks.

“Hmm. You’re blushing quite madly, Miss Em.”

“I’m not blushing!” she said. “I’m just warm. The candles are throwing heat over here.”

He didn’t even try to conceal his smirk. “Uh-huh. Tea lights are definitely a raging inferno. Let’s see if I can take a guess here.”

“Jesse.” She could see that the woman at the next table was watching them again.

“Sounds like this is a touchy subject,” he said. “Three months, then?”

“I’m not answering this.”

Jennifer Farwell will be on tour May 11-June 8 with her novel Rock Star's Girl

Emily Watts just wants a weekend break from the workaholic hours she's taken on to keep her business—a popular fashion-snark website—up and running. What she gets is overnight celebrity and a career-killing media scandal. While taking time out to attend a concert in support of friend Jesse Cinder, a struggling musician, Emily meets Cory Sampson, the lead singer of a chart-topping rock band. When she agrees to a date with Cory, making entertainment headlines is the last thing she expects. Even so, it's a minor surprise by comparison to her discovery that in the music world, media notoriety trumps all. Tabloid allegations erupt when Cory and fame-hungry Jesse use Emily for personal gain, and her tarnished image spells disaster—personally and professionally. To save the website and writing career she's made her life and dream, Emily must go from being a pawn in the Hollywood headline game to becoming the media mastermind. 

Please visit CLP Blog Tours for all the tour stops! 

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Jennifer Farwell

Author Bio:
Jennifer Farwell has been writing since the day she picked up a navy blue Crayola as a toddler and began scribbling on her parents' freshly painted white walls. She's the author of SEVEN WEEKS TO FOREVER and ROCK STAR'S GIRL. When not writing novels, she can often be found at a Kundalini yoga class, cheering on the L.A. Kings during hockey season, or curled up with a good book. Her love of storytelling led to completing a Bachelor of Journalism degree and a Master of Arts degree in English, both from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. She grew up in Thunder Bay, Canada, and now lives in Los Angeles with her dog, Pico.

Find Jennifer!

Twitter: @jennfarwell
Snapchat: jennfarwell

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Monday, May 18, 2015

Review: Bad Will Hunting by Heather Wardell

Title:  Bad Will Hunting
Author:  Heather Wardell
Genre:  Romance
Publisher:  Heather Wardell
Release Date:  November 14, 2014
File Size/Pages:  1490 KB/226 pgs
Source:  Heather Wardell

My Rating:  5/5

Summary:  The sequel to Heather Wardell's laugh-out-loud hilarious reality TV send-up, "Seven Exes Are Eight Too Many"!

During her time on "Ragged Royalty", Ashley developed a reputation as the show's scowling shrew. Clever editing, no doubt, but she still hates it. Now that her stint on the show is complete, she's determined to get the revenge she deserves on the producers who made her look so awful. Without it she can't move forward and decide what comes next for her. She knows what doesn't, though--ever seeing MC or Kent or any of the other contestants again. She hates all of them and they hate her too. Who could like "Angry Ashley"?

When she meets sexy attorney Will on the flight home, she believes he can help her get everything she needs. Until he double-crosses her. Now she needs revenge on him too.

After reluctantly enlisting fellow contestant Sam's much-needed help in her "Bad Will Hunting" mission, Ashley turns up a ton of dead ends but also some exciting life-changing possibilities. But she can't get over her need to get one over on Will, and on everyone else who's wronged her.

With so much "bad will" in her way, can Ashley ever find true happiness?

Review:  I received a copy of this novel from the author in exchange for my honest opinion, and I absolutely loved this book. Bad Will Hunting is the sequel to Seven Exes are Eight Too Many, which I reviewed back in 2011. I loved that book, and this book didn’t disappoint either. Bad Will Hunting tells the story of Ashley, also known as “Angry Ashley”, and her need for wanting to get revenge on EVERYONE who’s wronged her, including Ragged Royalty. Throughout this novel, I struggled with a love/hate relationship with Ashley. At times she could be really sweet, then she’d be really angry; when she was angry and hell-bent on revenge, it was hard for me to actually like her, but in the end, I ended up loving her just as much as I loved MC in Seven Exes are Eight Too Many. Since I read the first book in the series back in 2011, I had a hard time remembering Ashley, but I was able to catch on quickly after a few chapters. Overall, this novel was an excellent read, and I can’t wait to read the next book in the series!