Review: White Hot by Ilona Andrews

White Hot by Ilona Andrews
White Hot
Ilona Andrews
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: May 30, 2017
Series or Standalone:Hidden Legacy #2
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating:5 Stars


MY REVIEW

CW: Murder; violence; gun violence; death of a parent; kidnapping; torture; grief; panic attacks/PTSD 

Is it cliche to say White Hot is white hot? Because it’s the truth. When I think of the Hidden Legacy series as a whole, this is one book that always standouts in my head as it packs an emotional punch in so many ways. 

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Review: You, Again by Lauren Layne

You, Again by Lauren Layne
You, Again
Lauren Layne
Publisher: Self-published
Publication Date: July 19, 2022
Series or Standalone: Standalone
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 5 Stars


MY REVIEW

Lauren Layne can do no wrong in my book. You, Again is the perfect contemporary romance that hits all the right emotional notes. Seriously, nothing makes me happy than a new Lauren Layne book. I downloaded this as soon as it was available and stayed up way too late devouring it – zero regrets. 

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July 2022 Reading Recap

Another month, come and gone! After a rough couple of reading month, I feel like I feel found my groove again with reading. July was my best reading month since January of this year as I ended up reading 12 books. That’s helped me get a bit of a lead on my reading goal of 100 books in 2022, which we love to see.

Additionally, I also feel like I have started to find the space to get back to my regular cadence of review. There is definitely some work to be done to get back to consistently reviewing 2-3 books per week, but I’ve got a schedule planned out for August that I’m hoping I can stick to as I am SO FAR behind in reviews. Seriously, there are books I read literally months ago on my to-be-reviewed list that I haven’t touched yet.

Anyways, let’s see what I read in July, shall we?

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Review: Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

Burn for Me By Ilona Andrews
Burn for Me
Ilona Andrews
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: October 28, 2014
Series or Standalone: Hidden Legacy #1
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating:5 Stars


MY REVIEW

CW: Murder; violence; fire/fire injury; gun violence; cancer; death of a parent

No one does urban fantasy romance quite like Ilona Andrews. When I first read Burn for Me back in 2019, I was immediately hooked. I’ve since reread the series multiple times, so pardon me if I get a bit gushy. 

The Hidden Legacy series is one of my absolute favorites series and does not get talked about enough. The cover of this book does not do the story justice. Not only does this book have a swoon-worthy romance, but you also get fantastic world-building, a unique magic system, an action-packed plot and unforgettable secondary characters all in one book.

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ARC Review: A Duchess by Midnight by Charis Michaels

A Duchess by Midnight by Charis Michaels
A Duchess by Midnight
Charis Michaels
Publisher: Avon Books
Publication Date: July 26, 2022
Series or Standalone: Awakened by a Kiss #3
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating:3.5 Stars

MY REVIEW

A Duchess by Midnight is a smart, fun twist on the Cinderella tale in the final book in Charis Michaels’ Awakened by a Kiss series. While I enjoyed reading this book, it felt like something was missing and I cannot quite put my finger on what it is. 

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ARC Review: The Return of the Duke by Lorraine Heath

The Return of the Duke by Lorraine Heath
The Return of the Duke
Lorraine Heath
Publisher: Avon Books
Publication Date: July 26, 2022
Series or Standalone: Once Upon a Dukedom #3
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 5 Stars


MY REVIEW

CW: Infertility; blood; violence

I’ve been putting off writing my review for The Return of the Duke for months now. This book was my most anticipated read in 2022, and boy did it DELIVER. I’ve been waiting for Marcus’s story since Beauty Tempts the Beast and Lorraine Heath wrote the perfect tale for this mysterious lone wolf who has lingered in the shadows.

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Audiobook Review: Red, White and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
Red, White & Royal Blue
Casey McQuiston
Narrator: Ramón de Ocampo Publisher: MacMillan Audio
Publication Date: May 14, 2019
Series or Standalone: Standalone
Links: AmazonBarnes & Noble
Overall Rating: 2 Stars
Performance Rating:3.5 Stars
Story Rating:1.5 Stars

MY REVIEW

CW: Homophobia; outing; depression; grief

I feel like this will be a very unpopular opinion, so stick with me, but I did not like Red, White and Royal Blue. I’m very late to the game with reading this, but this is a super hyped book, and I tend to push off reading those as me and hyped books don’t tend to mix well. And that was certainly the case with this book. From the romance to the characters to the plot, this book was just not good. And I’ll be honest – the hype had me expecting more.

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ARC Review: Eclipse the Moon by Jessie Mihalik

Eclipse the Moon by Jessie Mihalik
Eclipse the Moon
Jessie Mihalik
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Publication Date: July 12, 2022
Series or Standalone: Starlight’s Shadow #2
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 4.5 Stars


MY REVIEW

CW: Violence; torture

After loving Hunt the Stars, I could not wait to read the next book in the series! Eclipse the Moon lived up to my expectations. I immediately got sucked into the story and stayed up until 3 am two days in a row so I could finish this – I couldn’t put it down! 

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You Were Made To Be Mine by Julie Anne Long

ARC Review: You Were Made to Be Mine by Julie Anne Long

You Were Made to Be Mine by Julie Anne Long
You Were Made to Be Mine
Julie Anne Long
Publisher: Avon Books
Publication Date: June 28, 2022
Series or Standalone: The Palace of Rogues #5
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 4.5 Stars


MY REVIEW

CW: Rape; physical abuse

Returning to The Grand Palace on the Thames ( or TGPOTT as it’s referred to) is like being welcomed home by a dear friend. I adore the Palace of Rogues series so much, and every book I read from Julie Anne Long solidifies her place as one of my favorite historical romance writers. You Were Made to Be Mine is one of the more emotionally heavy books in the series, but Long crafts a beautiful tale of love and resiliency with the romance of Hawkes and Aurelie.

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June 2022 Reading Recap

Oh wow did June fly by! I cannot believe we’re already past the halfway mark of the year now.

June was a tough reading month for me, and an even tougher month for reviewing. I only read 7 books and reviewed 3. Lots of travel and then some personal things popped up. I had a scare with the health of my cat that really threw me for a loop (she’s okay now but needs IV fluids every day so it’s been an adjustment).

For the first time ever, I read more audiobooks than physical books as I just did not have the time to sit down and read as much as I would have liked. Reading more audiobooks was a goal of mine this year and I can say, I’m fully smashing that.

As June is the mid-point of the year, I’d also thought I do a little check-in on some of my other reading goals. My biggest reading goal is to read 100 books this year. At the end of June, I’ve read 48 books this year, just shy of where I need to be on track to read 100. Luckily, I’ve already finished one book in July and have three more I’m currently reading (I’m all over the place right now) so I’m feeling optimistic still about hitting my goal for the year!

Now, on to what I read in June:

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