This Above All (San Francisco Series Book 3)

– by Nicole Pyland

 

You know, since discovering her books, I haven’t been disappointed with Nicole Pyland‘s stories because her writing style and word flow are just my cuppa. Always engaging and her conversational dialogues just seep into the consciousness ever so effortlessly, so her characters feel real and their stories relate and resonate. At least for me. “This Above All” was no exception. The third installment in the San Francisco Series, I knew it would become my favourite of the series as Pyland brilliantly weaved Amara and Hillary’s story of self-discovery, love, reconciliation and hope with captivating and compelling fervour.

Ideally, according to Pyland, you should read the previous two installments, “Checking The Right Box” and “Macon’s Heart,” not to mention, Book 1 of the new Tahoe Series, “Keep Tahoe Blue,” which should be read in-between Book 1 and Book 2 of the SF series, first. But if you’re not particular about reading the stories in order, I don’t think you’ll miss out hugely when you read “This Above All” as a standalone. The only thing that’s applicable to this book’s MCs, Hillary and Amara, in terms of the previous installments, would be the scenes (very few) where Pyland described their so-called “encounters” and the back stories of Hillary’s featured mates. No worries, though, because she summarised them in this book. So, you can always go back to read the previous ones just to get a clear picture plus discovering the love stories of Hillary’s circle of friends, if you want. Nevertheless, Hillary, one of the MCs in this story, the lone single woman in her close-knit circle of friends finally got what she wished for this time around. Finding her one true love. Obviously, she’d been enamoured of this stranger whom she kept bumping into for the past year. In “Macon’s Heart,” she finally found out the name of the stranger who had so captured her attention and roused her attraction from the start. Amara.

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Hooked On You

– by Jenn Matthews

First off, I must say, I was pleasantly surprised to receive a generous offer from the author of this book to read it before its release date sometime in February with no review obligation. After communicating briefly with Jenn Matthews, new author of Ylva’s and the architect of this book, “Hooked On You,” I was intrigued. I promised that I would give it a go after I finished the 3 books that I was reading then. Nonetheless, the story which captivated me from the start has inspired me to decide on commenting about it.

It IS ironic that the book has the word “Hooked” on its title because…!!! Ok, ever the curious one, despite being busy reading several books simultaneously and carrying on with me day job, I just thought I’d read the first pages of Matthews’ debut published novel just to get the gist of her writing tone and style. There was a Prologue. Good, so I dove in. Oh. My. God. Bloody hell! I instantly suspended all me other reads then so I could dive into this one! Needless to say, I was instantly HOOKED! From the Prologue alone! Whaaa?!

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Royal Court (A Royal Romance Story #3)

– by Jenny Frame

I was excited to read the 3rd installment of Jenny Frame‘s popular “A Royal Romance” series, “Royal Court.” The story was especially intriguing to me because Holly Weaver, one of Bea’s (Queen Consort) besties and her Royal Dresser, finally had her story told! I always wondered what her story was going to be about (obviously hoping, at that time, that Frame would write it! Little did I know….) since her introduction in Book #1, “A Royal Romance.” I was intrigued by her fiery character and always wondered if she was truly what she professed to be – a hetero man-eater. You know, a person who feels the need to clarify their sexuality or self-profess their sexual lifestyle for everyone to hear, always gives me this “a lady doth protest too much” feeling, if you catch me drift! So, I put Holly in that “slippery slope” category since Book 1 especially when Captain Quincy was briefly mentioned in Book 2, “Royal Rebel,” and Holly’s “Adonis” remark about her in that scene! I had me wishful thinking about their pairing, then, mind! And VOILA, what d’ya know!!! I got me wish!! Holly has her own story to tell! And goodness, did Frame give her a brilliantly crafted story, indeed, matching her with, yes, the “Adonis” she referred to in Book 2, a highly decorated Royal Marine-turned-Queen Consort’s Protection Officer, Captain Quincy, no less! YAY!! Wish came true! Imagine me joy! Needless to say, “Royal Court” is now me favourite installment in the series, yet! Yes, because of Frame’s brilliant creation and portrayal of the ever-tantalising characters, Quincy and Holly, and their utterly mesmerising journey.

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A Wish Upon A Star

– by Jeannie Levig

Once again, Jeannie Levig blew me away. This time with her latest, “A Wish Upon A Star.” Already psyched to read it after breezing through its excerpt because of how the story started, what was entailed in it and the flow was already pulling me in even with just a couple of chapters, I couldn’t believe me luck when I finally got to read the entire story! It was simply divine. I couldn’t ask for more. Levig crafted an utterly compelling, thought-provoking, heart-wrenching, heartwarming story with characters who immediately entranced me from the get-go, hooked me in and I was addicted. Having read Levig’s other books previously, I knew I would be captivated by her characters and her storytelling style. Only this time, apart from all the attributes that I’ve come to love and enjoy from Levig’s work, this time, she also awarded me a story (and all its components) that was truly refreshing to me. I never read anything portrayed and/or told like how Levig did in this book. Continue reading “A Wish Upon A Star”

Try Pink & Indigo Acts I And II

– by Max Ellendale

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I had previously read both “Try Pink” and “Indigo” separately a while ago and enjoyed them. But to read these two parts together as one single volume was something else all together. I absolutely LOVED Max Ellendale‘s decision to turn these two parts into a brilliant two-act structure, like a two-act play or musical, dividing the story into two distinct approaches – one, an experience of an “event,” and the other, a “goal” or “action” – in one simple, integrated model, which is, imo, a very appealing way of looking at the character’s “inner” and “outer” journey, both in the plot and theme narrative. Act I would be lighthearted and straightforward compared to Act II where the darker, more intricate and realistic part of the continuing story would make some sort of point about Act I. Plus, some time would have passed between Act I and Act II, which is common in a two-act story structure. All these were evident whilst reading Act I “Try Pink” and Act II “Indigo.”

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Insatiable Appetites (How Sweet It Is Series Book #4)

– by Fiona Zedde

If you haven’t read Fiona Zedde‘s latest installment of her brilliant How Sweet It Is Series, “Insatiable Appetites,” you need to. Brutally honest conversation about a very present issue within our community. Zedde doesn’t mince words and the dialogue (internal and interpersonal) is candid and raw, so realistic, it’s like you’re right there with the characters, listening and observing, the verbal and the non-verbal.

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