27 July 2011

Romance Retreat #1

Bookreview - Only Mine by Susan Mallery

Only Mine (Fool's Gold #4) - Susan Mallery

You can’t win if you don’t play…

Her town’s lack of men may make headlines, but it isn’t news to Dakota Hendrix. The beautiful blonde has bigger problems to deal with, such as overseeing the romance reality competition filming in Fool’s Gold. Screening eligible bachelors is a difficult enough task, but Dakota hits an unexpected snag when a sexy stranger comes to town.

Finn Anderssen will do anything to keep his twin brothers—the perfect contestants—off the show. Despite Dakota’s better judgment, she finds herself drawn to the mysterious outsider. Like her, Finn knows about heartbreak and how a family can fall apart, so she doesn’t dare to hope for anything more than a fling. After all, even in the Land of Happy Endings, finding true love is never as easy as it looks on TV.

Why did I read this book?

I know I haven't featured Women's Fiction/Contemporary Romance on this blog before. I've always read at least one a month to take a break from darker dystopian YA novels or *heavier* chick-lit. Susan Mallery is one of my favourite authors when it comes to these type of books and when I heard that the Hendrix triplets from her Fool's Gold series would get their own books I was excited.
I received Only Mine through Netgalley.

The Cover

I haven't seen the cover IRL as I've read it as en e-galley. I haven't any opinion about it apart from liking the color-combination.

My thoughts about the book

I really enjoyed the overall warm and fuzzy feeling this book evoked in me. It felt nice visiting Fool's Gold again, seeing all the old characters again. Fool's Gold is such a charming, friendly and unique place, it's a perfect background to the story.
Dakota is a smart, funny and headstrong woman. I envy her inner strength, her fighting spirit. The interaction between her and her sisters, mother, the women in town and of course with Finn are beautifully rendered and a joy to read.

Finn is quite swoon-worthy. I love me an Alaskan Man (yes, I have a soft spot for Alaska). I liked the fact that his family meant everything to him, that he spent the most part of the book angry and grumpy, and oh my is that man wonderful with a little baby-girl. But other than that I found him regrettably boring, I just didn't quite connect with him.

There were quite a few things that bugged me while reading this book. I can't reveal specific details as I don't want to write down any spoilers. I was sad to see that this book features so many pet-peeves of mine, pet-peeves that really annoy me and take away from the joy of reading it. I also didn't feel any romance or spark between Dakota and Finn, no reason why they should be together and like each other. Which is a shame, as I really liked Dakota.

There is however a second couple in this book. I LOOOOOOVED them together. Aurelia and Stephen. Quite a controversial match, for some at least. I couldn't get enough of them, couldn't turn the pages fast enough to read more about them.

Last Words

Only Mine is a light and fast read. Even though I had some problems with some aspects of it, it was still a quite enjoyable read and I finished it in one evening. If you enjoyed the previous Fool's Gold novels Only Mine is definitely worth to pick up and read.


My favourite books by Susan Mallery are Straight From the Hip and Sweet Success.

23 July 2011

In My Mailbox #22

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren , find out more about it on her IMM-page.

So, I'm back again, hopefully with reviews soon too, even though I haven't been reading lately...but hope to finally have time to start a new book tomorrow!

So, these are the books that arrived here during the last few week...
Overbite - Meg Cabot. This is the sequel to Insatiable.
Texas Gothic - Rosemary Clement-Moore
Starstruck - Cyn Balog

Love Story - Jennifer Echols. I luurve Jennifer Echols' books!
California Dreamers - Belinda Jones. Same here!
Pinch Me - Adena Halpern
Heartbeat Away - Laura Summers
Outlander - Diana Gabaldon. The 20th Anniversary Edition, with CD from Outlander Musical! You all know how obsessed I am with the Outlander series, I just had to have this one too :)

 So, as always I got a few books on my kindle too. I love to read on my kindle, actually, I love it much more than reading a normal book. I've become a FREAK!
The Iron Knight - Julie Kagawa. OH MY GOD. My first Netgalley and it is THE book I've been waiting for like aaaaahhh...well, some of you'll understand what this book means to me....
Only Yours - Susan Mallery. Netgalley. I little bit of romance...
Only Mine - Susan Mallery. Netgalley
The Duke and I - Julia Quinn. My favourite book by Julia Quinn, it was cheap on amazon, so I just had to have it in the Kindle-version too :)
Can't Hurry Love - Christie Ridgway. More romance..(third in a series)
Saving June - Hannah Harrington. Actually, this one is not a Kindle book, but an e-book, to be read on my laptop.

So, that's it from me this week. What did you all get?

Happy Reading

04 July 2011

June Favourites (Monthly favs #6) - Very short reviews

Ugh, another month has come and gone, where does all the TIME go? Is there a time-graveyard somewhere (along with the missing socks and my missing books?). Anyway, as I love my *statistics*, here comes my short recap of June where I present my favourite books I read over the past month.

I've been on a blogging hiatus (and still am, kind of), due to spending my Summer at the lake:
I've tried to read a lot, but was often distracted, sometimes by various animals as the BIG BLACK SNAKE I came across or stories my father told me daily about coming eye to eye with a wolf or a moose...this country is scary...lol :). Anyway, according to Goodreads I've read 16 books, which is not as bad as the previous months. I also discovered that I like to read on my Kindle much more than I like to read actual *tree* - books.

So, here are my June favourites!:

Don't Stop Now by Julie Halpern

On the first day of Lillian’s summer-before-college, she gets a message on her cell from her sort-of friend, Penny. Not only has Penny faked her own kidnapping, but Lil is the only one who figures it out. She knows that Penny’s home life has been rough, and that her boyfriend may be abusive. Soon, Penny’s family, the local police, and even the FBI are grilling Lil, and she decides to head out to Oregon, where Penny has mentioned an acquaintance. And who better to road-trip across the country with than Lil’s BFF, Josh. But here’s the thing: Lil loves Josh. And Josh doesn’t want to “ruin” their amazing friendship.
Josh has a car and his dad’s credit card. Lil has her cellphone and a hunch about where Penny is hiding. There’s something else she needs to find: Are she and Josh meant to be together?

I have mentioned a few times earlier that I simply love Road-trip books. As I've never been to the US I find it really interesting to read about all this peculiar places and look up pictures of these places on google. I love being in a car, even though I don't have a driving license myself ( I've never had enough money...). Most of my Summer-holidays consisted of my family driving all over Europe, yeah Road Trips!
For me this book had everything, the right places, the right pacing, an interesting story, a sweet romancing, a little bit of mystery. It is a coming of age story, finding the right way and there's just enough of an openness at the end to not lock the story in between it's covers but still giving me that feeling of content.....

Back When You Were Easier to Love - Emily Wing Smith

What's worse than getting dumped? Not even knowing if you've been dumped. Joy got no goodbye, and certainly no explanation when Zan - the love of her life and the only good thing about stifling, backward Haven, Utah - unceremoniously and unexpectedly left for college a year early. Joy needs closure almost as much as she needs Zan, so she heads for California, and Zan, riding shotgun beside Zan's former-best-friend Noah.

Original and insightful, quirky and crushing, Joy's story is told in surprising and artfully shifting flashbacks between her life then and now. Exquisite craft and wry, relatable humor signal the arrival of Emily Wing Smith as a breakout talent

This is also a Road-trip books, but quite different from 'Don't Stop Now'. This books actually took my kind of by surprise. I never expected to like it, event though I really adore different and quirky books. I downloaded the sample to my kindle and when I saw the word 'Mormon' I was intrigued. I've never read a book set within the mormon culture before and it was quite frankly not what I wanted to read about at this point, I just wanted to read a book about a boy and a girl ..a road and a car...lol. Well, there isn't much 'mormon' in this book as far as I could detect, or at least it didn't hinder my reading-experience. I loved the *journey* Joy went through, most of all her internal one. I really enjoyed this book, it gave me quite a few things to think about.

The Single Girl's To-Do List by Lindsey Kelk
A hilarious and romantic standalone novel from the bestselling author of the I Heart series Rachel Summers lives every area of her life according to a to-do list and so far, she is ticking most things off. She has a job she loves (make-up artist to the stars), the perfect boyfriend, a cosy London flat and a fantastic circle of friends. All that remains on her life to-do list is to get married, have a baby and live happily ever after. Simple. Well, not quite! Suddenly, Rachel's perfect boyfriend wants to take a break. She's convinced it's just cold feet but when the break turns into a split, her best friends Emelie and Matthew step in and come up with the ultimate heartbreak cure -- the single girl's to-do list, the top ten things Rachel must see and do to kick-start her fabulous, new single life. But nothing can prepare her for the adventures that unfold as the to-do list takes them all over town and even abroad, and proves to all three that love is out there if you're willing to take a chance!

I just realized that all my favourite books this month are about journeys. This chick-lit-y book is also about one. It's the journey from being just dumped and miserable to enjoying single-ness, this is achieved with the help of a list. A list written while being drunk. I love Lindsey Kelks novels. I enjoy her humour, her talent to draw me in, the feel every emotion within the pages, to identify with the characters. A perfect Summer- Beach-Read (or Winter-hot chocolate-on couch-read).

Groundswell by Katie Lee

EAT, SURF, LOVE. A butterfly flaps its wings in New York City . . . and a groundswell forms in Mexico. . . .
Sometimes the biggest ripples come from the smallest events. Like the day that Emma Guthrie walks into world-famous movie star Garrett Walker’s trailer. When she steps through the door, she’s a novice PA who’s just dropped out of college after losing her scholarship. When she walks out, she’s on her way to becoming Mrs. Emma Walker—wife of an A-list actor. Soon, Emma has made the transition from nobody to red-carpet royalty, trading jeans and flip-flops for closets full of Chanel and Birkin bags, swishing past velvet ropes to attend every lavish party and charity gala on both coasts. With her husband’s encouragement, Emma pens a screenplay based on her life, Fame Tax, which becomes a blockbuster sensation. Through it all, Garrett is her ally and her mentor . . . until their relationship is thrown into question by an incriminating text message that Emma discovers on Garrett’s phone the night of the Met Costume Institute Gala.
Devastated by her husband’s infidelity and hounded mercilessly by the paparazzi, Emma must flee New York City to get away from it all and clear her head. Her destination? A sleepy coastal town in Mexico where no one recognizes her and there is nothing but unspoiled beaches for miles. Here, she meets Ben, a gorgeous, California-born surf instructor, who teaches her about the healing powers of surfing, shows her the joys of the simple life, and ultimately opens her up to the possibility of love.
From Manhattan’s hippest restaurants to the yacht-and-celebrity infested waters of St. Barts, Katie Lee’s debut novel is an irresistible insider’s glimpse into a glittering world—and a captivating story about how losing everything you thought you wanted can be the first step to finding what you need.

And another book about a journey, gosh, what is it with the month of June??
This book also completely surprised me. It has all the elements I don't like in a book. Written by kind of a celebrity (even though I've never heard of her, as I live in Europe), a too long flashback and too *new-life* story, I still enjoyed this book immensely! I downloaded it to my kindle one late evening and I didn't go to bed until I'd finished it sometimes early early morning (or late night :P ).

So, last but not least, these are about my own journey, about how I've grown, where I've come in my life....
The Rywig- series by Berte Bratt

These books were some of my favourite books when I was a very young teenager. They were already *old* when I read them some 16 years ago, as they're set in the 50's and 60's in Norway, Germany, Africa, Australia and Canada.

I recently bought them used and got the revisit my favourite childhood characters. Yes, I teared up. Yes, I still love them. Yes, they opened up my eyes to things I didn't see before. They are still changing me, even all these years later.....

03 July 2011

In My Mailbox # 21

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren , find out more about it on her IMM-page.

Hi everybody, sorry that I have been AWOL lately, I've spent the last few weeks at the lake, reading a lot. Today though it's rainy and I have to go to the airport later to pick up my mom who's coming for a visit. Anyway, as I'm home, I thought I'd do a quick IMM today....hopefully I'll have time to write a June recap later on, or tomorrow.

All links go as usual to Goodreads.

Displacement - Thalia Chaltas
Hourglass - Myra McEntire; I can't wait to read this one, Love the cover!
A Need So Beautiful - Suzanne Young. This cover is gorgeous. It sounds really interesting.
Exile - Rebecca Lim. This is the second one in the Mercy trilogy
Spellbound - Cara Lynn Shultz. What an in teresting cover :)
Flying Blind - Deborah Cooke. I really like this one so far.
Starcrossed - Josephine Angelini. Beautiful and intriguing cover (cover twin to Hereafter?), haven't read it yet, as it isn't exactly a beach-read.
Hereafter - Tara Hudson ( see Starcrossed)

Don't Stop Now - Julie Halpern. I love Road Trip books, and I couldn't stop reading this one!
Sixteenth Summer - Michelle Dalton. Beach Read!

Confessions of a Karaoke Queen - Ella Kingsley. Somehow I got a proof-copy of this, I'm really enjoying it so far, it's hilarious!
Mr. Darcy Goes Overboard: A Tale of Tide & Prejudice - Belinda Roberts. You all know I can't resist Jane Austen!
The Summer Season - Julia Williams
The Single Girl's To-Do List - Lindsey Kelk. My favourite of  June by far. I love Lindsey Kelk's novels!

Nostalgia - Used Books

I woke up one day a few weeks ago and had this unbelievable craving after my childhood/young teenager books. I knew the books were out of print, and even with Abe-Books, and Amazon Used Books I knew it would be difficult to get them, as many don't ship outside of Germany or not to where I live. Anyway, I managed to get the most important books (for a lot of money :S), but I'm still missing three books, that just don't ship here :(. Anyway, I almost cried when they arrived, I devoured them all in a matter of days, I still love them!

Bleib bei uns, Beate - Berte Bratt
Hab Mut, Katrin - Berte Bratt
Machst du mit Senta? - Berte Bratt

Clara gibt nicht auf - Justus Pfaue
Mensch, Pia - Brigitte Blobel


Summer's Crossing - Julie Kagawa. PUCK!!!
Drive Me Crazy - Erin Downing
Groundswell - Katie Lee. This Book really surprised me. Me Like!!
With or Without You - Carole Matthews. I adore this book!
Sisterhood Everlasting - Ann Brashares. The 5th in the Traveling Pants series.

So, that's it from me. What did you all get?
Happy Reading!