Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Review: The Lovely Reckless by Kami Garcia

The Lovely Reckless
By: Kami Garcia
Release Date: October 4, 2016

I’ve become an expert at avoiding things that could hurt me—which means I will figure out how to stay away from Marco Leone.

Seventeen-year-old Frankie Devereux would do anything to forget the past. Haunted by the memory of her boyfriend’s death, she lives her life by one dangerous rule: Nothing matters. At least, that’s what Frankie tells herself after a reckless mistake forces her to leave her privileged life in the Heights to move in with her dad—an undercover cop. She transfers to a public high school in the Downs, where fistfights don’t faze anyone and illegal street racing is more popular than football.

Marco Leone is the fastest street racer in the Downs. Tough, sexy, and hypnotic, he makes it impossible for Frankie to ignore him—and how he makes her feel. But the risks Marco takes for his family could have devastating consequences for them both. When Frankie discovers his secret, she has to make a choice. Will she let the pain of the past determine her future? Or will she risk what little she has left to follow her heart?

Now I have never been shy about expressing how much I love reading stories with multicultural backgrounds, so when I saw this book I knew I had to read it.  This is definitely one of those books that explore being from the right and wrong side of the tracks, but really no matter where you are from it’s up to you how you will turn out.  I loved it from beginning to end!

We meet Frankie who is trying to remember and get over her boyfriend’s murder, which is a tough situation to be in and she is definitely in the whole avoiding phase of everything.  She moves in with her father and this is where she finally starts to find herself again, even with some old friends around she makes new friends and starts living her life even if it is recklessly at first.  These new people in her life give her meaning again, something she lost when she lost Noah. 

Marco is a great character someone who is doing the wrong things but for all the right reasons, sometimes that’s okay and sometimes it’s not and it takes meeting Frankie to realize what are the right things he should be doing again.  His reaction to her is very intense and even though there was a slight insta-love atmosphere about their relationship it didn’t bother me so much, because once you stopped thinking about it you could see how good they were for one another.  They bought out the best in each other, they really were like opposites attracting in a way.

Overall I really enjoyed the story because it had action, teen angst, real life addictions, the good and the bad all rolled up into a great story that kept me interested throughout the whole book.  This is definitely the type of book I enjoy reading.  Adding the Spanish aspect of everything just made me love it even more, we really do need more Spanish characters in young adult/new adult books.  Well really probably in all books in general.  This was a great story, the setting was interesting, the difference in the good side and the bad side of town was also intriguing.  This is a great book to sit down and read and enjoy.  I know I couldn’t put it down because I had to know who was going to do what and if they were going to do the logical right thing. 

I really liked all the characters too, some of them showed real dimensions and even though I wouldn’t have minded finding out more about the secondary characters I got just enough of a look into their lives that I really felt for them and their situations.  Great story.

I received this book from NetGalley and Macmillan Children's Publishing Group/Imprint, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Advance Praise
“Sexy, fast-paced, and action-packed—this is Kami Garcia like you’ve never seen her before.” —Tahereh Mafi, New York Times–bestselling author of Shatter Me
“The Lovely Reckless has everything I hope for in a book. Packed with the perfect blend of suspense, drama, romance, and heart, Kami Garcia has truly topped herself.” —Colleen Hoover, #1 New York Times–bestselling author of Hopeless

“With a feisty heroine, an irresistible bad boy, and an attraction so sizzling the words practically burn up the page, The Lovely Reckless is an insanely addictive, sexy, rush of a read you’ll return to again and again!” —Alyson Noël, #1 New York Times–bestselling author of The Immortals series

“A perfect blend of electrifying romance, pulse-pounding street racing, and page-turning suspense.” —Jennifer L. Armentrout, #1 New York Times–bestselling author of The Problem With Forever

“Rip-roaring and hyper-real, Kami outdoes herself.” —Holly Black, New York Times–bestselling author of The Darkest Part of the Forest

“Kami Garcia turns up the heat with The Lovely Reckless! The Fast and the Furious meets Romeo and Juliet, with a romance guaranteed to get your pulse racing.”—Carrie Ryan, New York Times–bestselling author of The Forest of Hands and Teeth

“The Lovely Reckless is a thrilling ride full of twists and turns and a love story that will melt your heart!” —Katie McGarry, award-winning author of Nowhere but Here

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Review: My Wild Irish Dragon by Ashlyn Chase

My Wild Irish Dragon
By: Ashlyn Chase
Release Date: September 6, 2016
Series: Boston Dragons #2

Dragon shifter Chloe Arish is hell-bent on becoming a Boston firefighter. She uses her Irish charm and fake documents to score an interview, knowing she has to work every bit as hard as a man-harder if she wants their respect.

Born into a legendary Boston firefighting family, phoenix shifter Ryan Fiero can't possibly let someone best him on the training course or the job. He'd never hear the end of it. When a feisty new recruit comes along who's determined to do just that, Ryan plots to kick her out-until their sizzling chemistry turns explosive...

Boston Dragons Series:
I Dream of Dragons
My Wild Irish Dragon
Praise for Ashlyn Chase's Flirting with Fangs series:
"Merges the paranormal and real world seamlessly... Truly entertaining."-Long and Short Reviews
"Hot sex scenes and a breezy tone with a nice, happily-ever-after."-Booklist

I haven’t read anything paranormal in quite some time but I figure seeing as Halloween is coming up let me give it a go.  Ashlyn Chace did a really great job with this paranormal romance.  It was very much the great genre I remembered.  Although I don’t believe I’ve ever read much about dragons in the past, but shifters absolutely and there were a number of shifters in this book.

We meet Chloe who is a dragon from Ireland, and I love all the Irish accents throughout the book, I can picture them all talking in my mind and loved every second it.  Something about accents so intriguing.  Even though I’m sure to foreigners we have an accent as well.  Any who so she is very keen on becoming a firefighter and showing what she has to offer, this is where she meets Ryan.  He’s tough and ready to prove himself as well especially coming from a very large family of firefighters he has a lot more to lose.

The chemistry they have in the beginning and towards the middle of the book is so palpable and energy filled between the two of them, you can just feel it when you are in a room with them.  It’s intoxicating.  When they finally did explode together you couldn’t help but cheer for them, of course they have a few obstacles in their way but the way they overcome it with compromise is quite impressive.  These two definitely have ever lasting type of chemistry.

Overall I thought the book was great. The story was interested, the language barrier made you laugh from time to time, who knew American sayings were so confusing at times and easy to mess up.  The drama between the two main characters and all the other characters in the rest of the book weren’t too major but it was all resolved very nicely and amicably.  I like it when everyone somehow in some way gets what they want.

Love the cover, exactly what I pictured Ryan to look like, and super yum.  Quick read, great paranormal romance. 

I received this book from NetGalley and Sourcebooks Casablanca, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Review: Play By Piper Lawson

By: Piper Lawson
Release Date: September 14, 2016

PLAY is a quirky 70k word standalone about life, love, and the pursuit of orgasms. 
I mean, video games.

IT'S (A)LIVE!!! http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01G0OI1SW 
I'm Payton Blake. A successful, balanced twenty-something girl living the dream. 

OK. So it's a big-ass lie. 

I could be all of those things. If I had friends outside of work. And if I didn't mainline watermelon slushies like they were a food group. It wouldn't hurt if I'd had sex in the last year, either. (My best friend insists Jorge the Nightstand Boyfriend doesn't count.) 

But when you know where you're headed, who needs to enjoy the ride? Even if part of me longed for a little between-the-sheets adventure, Max Donovan would be the last guy I'd call. 

Sure, he made the indie video game that broke the internet. His eyebrow piercing's sexy, in an 'are-you-in-a-band?' way, and fighting with him gets me off faster than Jorge on bezerker mode. But he's arrogant. Presumptuous. Colder than a cactus and twice as prickly. 

None of it changes the fact that I crave Max Donovan like a watermelon slushy on a hot summer day. 

I should ignore him. But I can't, because he just became my biggest client. And whether he'll admit it or not, he needs me even more than I need him.

Game on, Max Donovan.

I don’t usually say this but this book was fire! It was so hot and addicting I almost contemplated calling out of work just so I could finish reading it. Piper really did an amazing job on the writing of this book, it was captivating, thrilling, and oh so sweet. 

We meet Payton who is working her way up in the financial world trying to be as successful as she can be when she lands a meeting that my just make her year.  That is until she meets who it is and then the fireworks begin, constant bickering back and forth between her and Mr. Max Donovan.  He’s the head of a gaming company and oh so sexy with his eyebrow piercing.  But they are both very strong personalities and the tension between the two of them is too hot.  There were some scenes in this book that even made me blush. 

The two of them are working together to make Max’s new endeavor more successful than his last, but Max of course wants to do it his way and his way only.  It’s hard when you lose all trust in people, letting anyone in even a little bit can be a difficult thing.  You feel like you can’t give them not even a small part of you but Payton knows just how to crack into his shell. 

The story line between the two of them was great because they aren’t the same person, they are grown adults and even though it may have been a little instant connection they showed that it was instant lustful connection and throughout time they fell for one another.  This is real life and it could really happen exactly the way the book described it because I’m sure it happens every day.  So the realistic aspects of the book, the interesting gaming jargon and the bonus of throwing in an event like comic con, which I aspire to go to one day was just overwhelmingly fabulous in the book.  It bought everything together and just that much more enticing. 

This was a quick read because you didn’t want to put it down, the interaction between all the characters were addicting.  The cover is very sexy, although I will say it’s missing the eyebrow piercing because that just adds to the sexiness as it’s mentioned so much in the book, and the perfect mouth.  Fantastically spicy read that I would recommend to everyone asap!  It comes out today so make sure you pick it up and I promise you will not regret it!

I received this book from NetGalley and Victory Editing, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Review: The 48-Hour Hookup by Sarah Ballance

The 48-Hour Hook Up
By: Sarah Ballance
Release Date: September 12, 2016
Series: Chase Brothers #4

Who knew a sweaty photo would be good for business?
Now unwanted booty calls are coming in as fast as work orders, and Liam Chase needs to get away. Cue a job upstate. His new client is hot as hell, but he left NYC to escape attention, not to hook up with the city’s “Runaway Bride”.
With three disastrous relationships under her belt, it’s clear Claire Stevens’s judgment sucks. And what’s she’s feeling for America’s newest sex god? Obviously another hormone-fueled mistake.
But when she accidentally fells a tree on his truck, leaving them stranded in a winter storm with a chocolate-snatching raccoon, there’s something to be said for body heat.
Too bad neither can trust their explosive chemistry…

This was a very fun quick and easy read, great for reading on a rainy day, or stuck in the snow somewhere maybe it will give you some inspiration on dropping a tree on someone’s car who knows where it may lead.  Smile! What a way to introduce the characters, it was priceless and definitely memorable.

We meet Claire who is known in social media as the runaway bride, she’s out hiding in the woods at her family’s cabin and she somehow randomly just happens to call for an HVAC guy and it happens to be the very viral HOT HVAC Guy.  Their meeting as previously stated was very memorable but there connection took a minute to generate.  They are both obviously very good looking people, very much looked at on social media and neither on purpose but it just seemed to happen for whatever reason.  It’s a match made in heaven really because who better to understand the struggles of trying to lead a normal life then those that were exposed publicly. 

Their growing relationship does take its up and downs but man oh man how one person can be so disaster prone I’ll never know but it was definitely entertaining to watch all the mishaps happen.  Overall this was a very sweet book with a cute story, in the beginning it was a little iffy but then I started to love the book and the ending was just perfect.

I hadn’t read the other books in this series yet but I’m very interested in seeing how all these couples got together.  Even though I’m coming in at the end of the series it was bittersweet to watch it end but it was the sweetest ending ever.  Very loving and touching there at the end. Can’t wait to see what happened with the other Chase Brothers.   

I received this book from NetGalley and Entangled Publishing, LLC, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Review: Just One Week by Alice Gaines

Just One Week
By: Alice Gaines
Release Date: September 12, 2016

Her brother’s best friend is not only the hottest man Michelle Dennis has ever seen, he’s the reason she left town eight years ago. Of course he’s the one waiting at the airport. Worse, he made sure they’re staying in the same house.
Alex Stafford is expecting to pick up his friend’s kid sister, not a full-fledged bombshell. He was planning to apologize for their past, but the feelings he had years ago come roaring back…and this time, there’s no denying them.
Keeping his hands off is a test he’s bound to fail—especially when they’re stuck in close quarters. But falling in love with Michelle, living in her world, isn’t an option for a guy like him. And remembering that will save them both a lot of heartache…
I’ve always enjoyed the classic story of girl being in love with her brother’s best friend.  Hey things happen and it’s always a possibility, and one that happens quite often.  Of course it happens but usually it’s much unrequited, but then there are those times when it is requited.  This was a lovely story about two people who had a bit of a falling out when they were younger and getting back together many years later.  It’s sweet and the author did a great job.

We meet Michelle as she is on her way back to a place she didn’t think she would go back to, especially after the fight she had with her brother’s best friend, Alex.  Oh to profess ones love and have it shut down, it’s tough.  But of course she’s thrown into the ring with Alex right away and right off the gate.  There is some tension, but a plan forms to seduce him.  We all know how plans tend to work out don’t we?

Alex is still kicking himself for the way he acted way back when but he knows he’s going to make everything right.  He always felt like because of his learning disability he was never worthy of someone like Michelle.  But it’s hard because no one knows about this and he likes to keep things to himself.  Which is never a good idea by the way.

I don’t want to give too much away but this was a very quick read and kept you very interested.  There were some really steamy scenes in this book and there were just emotions that made you want them to work out in the end.  It was cute and quick and fun.  Loved the sense of family that they all have in this book.  Great read. 

I received this book from NetGalley and Entangled Publishing, LLC, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Review: The Possibility of Somewhere by Julia Day

The Possibility of Somewhere
By: Julia Day
Release Date: September 6, 2016

Together is somewhere they long to be.

Ash Gupta has a life full of possibility. His senior year is going exactly as he’s always wanted-- he's admired by his peers, enjoying his classes and getting the kind of grades that his wealthy, immigrant parents expect. There's only one obstacle in Ash's path: Eden Moore—the senior most likely to become class valedictorian. How could this unpopular, sharp-tongued girl from the wrong side of the tracks stand in his way?

All Eden's ever wanted was a way out. Her perfect GPA should be enough to guarantee her a free ride to college -- and an exit from her trailer-park existence for good. The last thing she needs is a bitter rivalry with Ash, who wants a prized scholarship for his own selfish reasons. Or so she thinks. . . When Eden ends up working with Ash on a class project, she discovers that the two have more in common than either of them could have imagined. They’re both in pursuit of a dream -- one that feels within reach thanks to their new connection. But what does the future hold for two passionate souls from totally different worlds?

Sometimes succeeding in life and moving on from your small town is important, but sometimes it’s the experiences you have getting there and letting people in is what matters more.  This story was charming and addicting, Julia Day did a remarkable job telling the story of Eden and Ash.  Both fighting for the same goal in life, to get out from under their parents and their current lives, both extremely smart and determined.

This story is told through Eden’s point of view, she considers herself to be trailer trash, and not worthy of any friends or anything else really.  The only thing she is determined to do is go to college and finally be able to get out of this small town and the reputation she was given to because of her mother’s actions.  It was very interesting watching her grow as a person and finally letting people in, although if they were anything like Mundy, she really didn’t have a choice.  Mundy was a very curious character who is very out there and honest, she was delightful. 

We also meet Ash who is really Eden’s rival, they are 1 and 2 in their class and are always in competition with one another.  He is described as quite a handsome boy and not only that, but he is also Indian, which is not a background you normally see in YA books so that just made him even more interesting.  There were a lot of mentions of racism and people not approving of their potential relationship because she was white and he was Indian, but they complimented each other so well.  Ash helped Eden come out of her shell more. 

Their relationship was innocent, simple and adorable to read about.  Their friendship grew, sure there were moments I was mad at them especially Ash for being so stiff, but it’s who he is and just made the book that much better.  There were a lot of different story lines in this book, not only with friendship, rivals, and school but there were also parents, death, autism, and bullying and life changes.  This book had me going to the very end it was too good, I didn’t want it to end honestly.  I wouldn’t mind reading this book from Ash’s point of view that should be even more exciting.

The cover is charming and attractive, absolutely something I would pick up to read more about.  This book is great especially now that school is very much in the near future.  Perfect for those overachievers wondering what can change in their lives.  Overall this book was addicting and I loved the different plot lines, I think Julia did an amazing job bringing these characters to life and showcasing another stereotype and the idea of different races getting together into the light more.  It happens, and it’s okay because in the end we are all people.  It’s how you react to that which matters most.  I loved reading their struggle and their triumph.  Great book, go make sure you pick it up and read it!

I received this book from NetGalley and St. Martin's Press/St. Martin's Griffin, so that I may give my honest opinion and a review. Whether it is good or not please do not let it discourage you from purchasing/reading the book yourself and forming your own opinion. What might be good for me may not be good for you and vice versa. With that said, Happy Reading Everyone!!!

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Blog Tour: The Summer Before Forever by Melissa Chambers - Review/Excerpt/Giveaway

The Summer Before Forever
By: Melissa Chambers
Release Date: August 22, 2016
Series: Before Forever #1

Some boys break your heart. Others teach you how to heal it.

Chloe Stone’s life is a hot mess. Determined to stop being so freaking skittish, she packs up her quasi-famous best friend and heads to Florida. The goal? Complete the summer bucket list to end all bucket lists. The problem? Her hot soon-to-be stepbrother, Landon Jacobs.

Landon’s mom will throttle him if he even looks at his future stepsister the wrong way. Problem is, Chloe is everything he didn’t know he wanted, and that’s...inconvenient. Watching her tear it up on a karaoke stage, stand up to his asshole friend, and rock her first string bikini destroys his sanity.

But there’s more than their future family on the line. Landon is hiding something—something he knows will change how she feels about him—and she’s hiding something from him, too. And when the secrets come out, there’s a good chance neither will look at the other the same way again...

This was a very unique story line with a variety of difficult situations which the author did a great job in helping you through these difficult situations.  I always love learning new things and Melissa Chambers had me googling all over the place for the one learning disability in the book, so it’s always a plus when you can learn something new.

We meet Chloe who is about to spend the summer with her father and his soon to be new wife who happens to have a teenage son.  You know this is a recipe for disaster depending on how the two get along.  It definitely didn’t turn out to be a disaster for Chloe and Landon, quite the opposite actually.  The minute they see each other there is a connection, it was a little too insta love for me, but regardless as the story progressed I was intrigued and interested in their story. 

Chloe is running away from something that happened to her in her hometown, but with the help of her best friend Jenna and a list to boost her confidence she prevails.  Sometimes it’s a difficult thing to try and gain confidence, it’s a scary thing that most people can’t even accomplish while others just flourish with it, but her different tasks definitely help change Chloe for the better.  Landon on the other hand has a learning disability that he can’t help but hide, he’s embarrassed by it and doesn’t want anyone to think any less of him.  It’s a learning disability I’ve never heard of before but what a great way to bring it to light so that others can learn more about it.  I applaud Melissa Chambers for that great accomplishment. 

The romance in this book is very low-key and innocent for the most part, but it definitely showed how there are different people in this world and you always have to be careful, because you never know what type of situation you will be put into.  I loved that this story touched upon possible rape and how to handle a situation like that.  Running away isn’t always the answer sometimes you have to face it, especially if they can do it again to someone else.  It’s a very serious issue that needs to be discussed both with young women and men.  Again I applaud Melissa Chambers for that. 

Overall I think Chloe and Landon helped to build each other’s confidence throughout the book and deal with their impending situations.  There was family issues, learning disabilities, dating situations and just a little bit of everything in this book.  It was an interesting and great read, very quick and entertaining.  The cover is adorable, even if it’s not how I pictured any of the characters.     

About the Author: 
melissa chambersMelissa Chambers writes contemporary novels for young, new, and actual adults. A Nashville native, she spends her days working in the music industry and her nights tapping away at her keyboard. While she’s slightly obsessed with alt rock, she leaves the guitar playing to her husband and kid. She never misses a chance to play a tennis match, listen to an audiobook, or eat a bowl of ice cream. (Rocky road, please!) She’s a member of SCBWI and RWA including several local and online chapters thereof. She holds her B.S. in Communications from the University of Tennessee.
 Website: http://www.melissachambers.com
 Twitter: MelChambersAuth
 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MelissaChambersAuthor
 Newsletter: http://melissachambers.com/?page_id=539

Read Below for an excerpt from The Summer Before Forever:
It’s not like I didn’t know better. How many times has it been drilled into my brain—into the brain of every child over the age of three. Don’t get into a car with a stranger. But can the guy you’ve been melting for since the start of sophomore year really be considered a stranger…even if you never officially met him before?

I accidentally gun the gas as I squirm a little. Eight hours in a driver’s seat is hell on any behind.

It’s done. It’s over. In fact, I’m lucky. I got out of the nightmare with all my firsts still intact…well, most of them. Not quite the first kiss I have been waiting for these past sixteen years. But how juvenile is it anyway that a girl on the brink of seventeen would go un-kissed? Sweet sixteen and never been kissed—endearing. Seventeen and never been kissed—circus freak. At least that’s out of the way.

Jenna rouses in the passenger seat, yawning. “Oh my God. There’s the ocean.”

So it is, Captain Obvious. My Honda Civic starts its ascent up a fairly frightening looking bridge over an inlet.

“How long have I been asleep?”

“Couple of hours.”

She grabs her phone and squints at the screen. “Service. Thank God.”

I can’t help but smile. “What would Jenna Quigley do without social media for a day?”

“I have my fans to consider,” she says.

I give her a look.


Oh, but if only she was kidding. It’s amazing what placing eighth in a karaoke contest can do for one’s ego. Okay, so it was the most popular singing competition on any major network, but same difference.

She flips through her phone. “Oooh. I almost forgot. You’re going to love this one.”

Jenna and I are two of the most unlikely best friends in the history of friendships, but one thing that does bring us together is our shared love of music.

Unfortunately, our tastes couldn’t possibly be further apart on the spectrum.

“You’ve said that about the last five songs you played for me,” I say.

She holds up her free hand, the thumb on the other still scrolling. “I swear this is one of your people, not mine.”

She sets her phone down and stares at me with those huge green eyes as the synthpop sounds of St. Lucia fill my car.

I eye her. I wouldn’t call St. Lucia one of my people, but he definitely doesn’t suck. And as far as artists go that break the barrier between her pop roots and my alt rock ones, this is one I can live with. Besides, this song is highly danceable. My upper body moves to the beat without my permission.

She points at me. “See! I told you you’d love it.”

I let a smile through. “I don’t hate it. How did you get into him?”

“Mason,” she says.

And with that name, my shoulders still. Not that there’s anything wrong with Mason. He’s not the one who tried to force himself on me. No, that particular honor goes to his best friend, Trevor. I haven’t told Jenna yet. She’ll be crushed when she finds out—and then murderous. With the summer in front of us, I need to keep her living in blissful ignorance. If I don’t, she’ll blow up to Mason about it, and then it will become this huge deal around school.

As far as she’s concerned, Trevor and I kissed, and there was no spark.

“So this kid who’s going to be your stepbrother—what’s his name?” Jenna asks.

Here we go. I suppose I’ve put this off long enough. “I probably should mention… He’s not really a kid.”

“Great. Is he some pervy preteen who’s going to be peeping through the crack of my bedroom door?”

“Not exactly.” I don’t know if he’s pervy or not, but I do know he’s not a preteen. He’s only a year older than us. It’s stupid, but I’m not ready for Jenna to find out yet. If I’d told her when I found out, she’d have found him on social media and wrapped him around her pinky before we even arrived. I just want a chance to get to know him at the same time rather than the two of them being old buds and best friends before we even arrive…or worse, dating.

I stare past the road out into the sparkling ocean spread in front of us. Secretly, I’m hoping he’s more like me than he is like her. I’ve never had a brother. God, I need that right now. A guy I can trust, who’s got my back. I have these ridiculous fantasies of this guy who immediately takes me under his protective wing as he kickboxes Trevor in the balls for what he tried to make me do…for what he swears we will do someday.

“So? What’s his name?” Jenna repeats.

“I don’t remember,” I lie.

She glares at me. “Well, what has your dad told you about him?”

I hit the blinker, and we turn toward our home for the next two months. “You think my dad and I have actual conversations?”

Jenna sits up and gasps, staring out the window. “No. Freaking. Way.”

A massive stone archway with sleek, aqua letters reading Sea Glass Cove welcomes us into a resort covered in pastel beach bungalows, a crazy big golf course, and a pool that looks like it was hijacked from Atlantis.

“Why didn’t you tell me your dad was loaded?” Jenna asks.

“He’s not,” I say. “This is his fiancée’s house.”

She snickers. “Score, Mr. Stone. Your dad must be hotter than I remember.”

I make a face. “Gross, Jenna.”

“Does he have a huge penis?” She pokes me in the side.

I swerve. “You’re going to get us killed, nasty.”

Jenna stabs a finger across my face. “265, there it is.”

I turn into the driveway of a two-story baby blue house. A black Jeep sits next to a shiny red Porsche SUV in front of my Honda. All this belongs to my future stepmother. Geez. Does my dad have a huge penis?

I open the door, and the salty sea air hits my face like the smell of chocolate chip cookies fresh out of the oven. Florida, even the humidity that’s so thick I think I might need an asthma inhaler, is my temporary escape for the summer.

I know I have to go back home to Cliff Ridge eventually, but when I do, the evil Trevor will be gone for college. As much as the next two months are going to win the award for most awkward daughter/dad summer ever, it’s better than the alternative of spending it back home looking over my shoulder.

I open the trunk and start gathering our bags.

“Cute,” Jenna says.

I glance at the house next door. “Yeah, you won’t find lavender houses in Cliff Ridge.”

“Not the house,” Jenna says out of the corner of her mouth.

“Let me get that.”

I look up to put a face with the unfamiliar male voice. Holy Zac Efron. Who in the… Oh no. I bet this is—

“Hey.” He grins at Jenna. “Which one of you is my new little sister?”

Jenna’s eyes go wide and she elbows me in the side. “Thank God not me.”

Great. Just…great.

He gives her a mischievous lift of an eyebrow, and then shifts his gaze to me. “Chloe?”

This guy has got the bluest eyes I’ve ever seen and short, shaggy, dark hair that falls all around his face in that totally messy and totally doesn’t care kind of way. Standing at least six feet tall, he towers over me, but I’m used to that. A light sprinkling of freckles decorates his tanned face, whereas I look like I’ve been hiding under a UV protected rock my whole life.

I scratch my eyebrow. “Yeah. Landon, right?”

“I thought you couldn’t remember his name,” Jenna mutters.

I cut my eyes at her in warning. He offers me his hand, and I take it.

“So you’re the new sister. You’re my first.” He gives the slightest hint of a smile and lets go of my hand. We watch as he wrangles our big roller bags out of the trunk and carries them both by the handles into the house.

Jenna rests an elbow on my shoulder. “Who needs to use the rollers when you’ve got muscles like that?”

She looks at me for a reaction, but I turn to the trunk to avoid her.

“So, some kid brother you got there,” she says. “What the hell, Chlo?”

I tug the rest of the bags out of the trunk and load us both down with them. “I said he wasn’t a kid…exactly.”

Jenna points to his backside as he climbs the front porch steps. “Not a kid, exactly? That is a full-fledged man. His boy parts grew up years ago.”

I anchor a canvas bag to her right shoulder. “Don’t be gross.”

I shut the trunk, and we make our way toward the house.

Landon holds the door open for us, and we scoot past him into the foyer. It’s weird stepping into this house that I guess will be my home in a way. My dad lives here after all, but it’s not really his…at least not yet. I glance around at all the white and aqua stuff, including a pristine white couch. God, I hope I don’t spill anything on that.

“This is a beautiful house,” I say.

“My mom’s a real estate agent. She’s into decorating houses and stuff.”

I glance around. “Is my dad here?”

“They just texted. They’ll be here in just a little while. They’re getting dinner stuff.” He smiles. “I think they’re going all out for your first night.”

I suppose that warms my heart a tad. Doesn’t really make up for my dad’s virtual complete absence from my life for the past five months, but who’s keeping score.

“Where will we be sleeping?” Jenna asks with innuendo.

“Upstairs. Follow me.”

As he leads us up the stairs Jenna points at his behind again and gives a thumb’s up. I give my throat a slice in warning, and it just eggs her on.

He hauls our suitcases into a pale yellow room. Jenna tosses her bags on one of the twin beds, and I sit down on the other.

“I’ll let you settle in. Nice to meet you, Jenna…Chloe.”

“Likewise,” Jenna says as he shuts the door to our room behind him.

I glare at her.

She flops onto the bed she claimed. “What’d I do?”

“We’re going to be here two months,” I say pointedly.


“So if you hook up with him now and things go sour next week, it’s going to be a long two months.”

She sighs and sits up. “Point taken. Besides that, he’s just the first one we’ve seen. I bet there are a whole slew of them down at the beach. Let’s go.” She rips into her suitcase and comes up with a hot pink bikini.

“I want to wait for my dad to get home. You go.”

“That’s cool. I’ll wait with you.” She pulls her phone out of her pocket and flips through one of her seven or eight social media apps, I assume.

“Ah, look at my sweetie.”

“Who?” I ask. It could be anyone.

She glowers at me. “Mason.”

I nod. Of course. They hooked up the same night I had my fiasco with Trevor. Jenna never clarifies what she means by hooked up. I’m guessing it’s somewhere between a peck on the cheek and full-on sex.

I hang clothes in one of the two closets, and then pull out the bag with my shower stuff. As I go to set my shampoo down on the corner of the tub, I notice a bottle of men’s body wash. I realize that the door I assumed was to a linen closet is actually too big to be a closet door. I creep toward it and give it a little shove. It leads to another bedroom. A guy’s bedroom.

Gray, t-shirt material sheets pool on the unmade bed. A football poster decorates one wall, while another poster of Kate Upton in a bikini hangs on another. At least sixty or seventy hardbacks line the shelves of a bookcase. I check the door, and then take a few steps closer to read the titles—biographies, many of world leaders or prominent figures in history. I spot one sitting on his desk with a bookmark peeping out of it. Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy.

He’s redeemed for the Kate Upton poster.

A classic tennis racket in a wooden case sits on a shelf above his bed. A toddler-sized jersey hangs in a frame on one wall next to a shelf housing a single trophy. I come closer and read the plaque. The Mean Green Gorillas, Team Participant. I can’t help but giggle.

“I don’t come in your room and laugh at your stuff.”

I jump a mile and spin around.

Landon lounges against the doorframe.

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