ARC Review: Something Wild & Wonderful by Anita Kelly

Something Wild & Wonderful by Anita Kelly
Something Wild & Wonderful
Anita Kelly
Publisher: Forever
Publication Date: March 7, 2023
Series or Standalone: Standalone
Links: Amazon Barnes & NobleGoodreadsStoryGraph
Rating: 5 Stars


CW: familial estrangement due to queer identity; harsh homophobic language (used in Chapter 16); religion and strict religious upbringing (Christianity); mentions of Alzheimer’s/dementia care; brief references to past toxic romantic relationships.

How do your review a book that was literal perfection? I don’t throw that word around often, but Something Wild & Wonderful was perfect. This was a beautiful tale of two people finding themselves and finding love while on the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT). I didn’t expect to fall in love with this book so quickly, but the characters and their journey hooked me immediately and swept me away. I was an emotional mess at the end because I was just so happy for Alexei and Ben. 

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Trope Tuesday: 4 Books to Read If You Like Troubled Rockstars

When it comes to rockstar romances, my favorite books tend to have a troubled rockstar front and center. Give me all the emotionally damaged men!

I don’t know why I am so drawn to this trope, but I absolutely adore it. I also love the women these rockstars get paired up with, as they usually are take no-nonsense women who care for these troubled rockstars no matter what.

So if you’re looking for a new rockstar romance to pick up and you like your heroes a bit emotionally damaged, look no further than these books:

Lead by Kylie Scott

Lead by Kylie Scott

Lead by Kylie Scott is one of my all-time favorite rockstar romances and a go-to comfort read.

Jimmy Ferris is the best broken and troubled rockstar of the bunch. Sure, he’s a bit of an asshole, but he’s got a heart of gold buried under there. And then there is Lena, who is one of my favorite female characters. She’s outspoken and confident and takes none of Jimmy’s BS. I adore her and Jimmy, and their relationship is just *chef’s kiss*.

Here’s the blurb:

As the lead singer of Stage Dive, Jimmy is used to getting whatever he wants, whenever he wants it, whether it’s booze, drugs, or women. However, when a PR disaster serves as a wake-up call about his life and lands him in rehab, he finds himself with Lena, a new assistant to keep him out of trouble.

Lena’s not willing to take any crap from the sexy rocker and is determined to keep their relationship completely professional, despite their sizzling chemistry. But when Jimmy pushes her too far and Lena leaves, he realizes that he may just have lost the best thing that ever happened to him.

Fade Into You by Tracy Wolff

Fade Into You by Tracy Wolff

It’s been a while since I read Fade Into You, but I remember loving it as I read it in one day. I’m still sad we’ll never get book 4 in the Shaken Dirty series, but I can console myself with this book. 

I absolutely love Poppy and Wyatt’s relationship – the banter between them is A+. Plus, the fact that she’s working as the band’s social media consultant but is actually the daughter of their label adds a nice, fun spin to this.

Here’s the blurb:

She’s one addiction he can’t resist.

Wyatt Jennings has been called a lot of things by the media. Bad-boy rocker. Intense drummer. Addict.

Finally out of rehab and desperate for a fresh start, Wyatt rejoins his mega-platinum rock band Shaken Dirty as they prepare for their world tour. But Wyatt’s demons are never far behind, always nipping at his heels for one. More. Fix.

Enter Poppy Germaine, the band’s new social media consultant. A beautiful bombshell who somehow manages to get underneath Wyatt’s skin, Poppy’s an addiction Wyatt can get behind. And even though she’s with the label—and therefore off-limits—he craves her. Needs her.

Except Poppy isn’t actually a social media consultant. She’s the daughter of the label’s CEO, sent undercover to babysit Wyatt and keep him from falling off the wagon again. Proving herself to her father is Poppy’s only goal—until she finds herself in Wyatt’s bed. But if Wyatt discovers the truth, it could send him spiraling all over again…

Fall by Kirsten Callihan

Fall by Kristen Callihan

Fall is one of my favorite books in the VIP series by Kristen Callihan

This book has one of my favorite meet-cutes at a grocery store that involved an impending snowstorm and the last pint of ice cream. I love how Jax and Stella’s relationship develops perfectly throughout the course of the novel, and I love their banter. Jax knows just what buttons to push to get under Stella’s skin. 

This book also has a lot of heart as Jax and Stella find each other at the perfect time as they’re both feeling of emptiness and loneliness that they bond over.

Here’s the blurb:

The first time I met Jax Blackwood things went a little sideways.

In my defense, I didn’t know he was Jax Blackwood—who expects a legendary rock star to be shopping for groceries? More importantly, a blizzard was coming and he was about to grab the last carton of mint-chocolate chip.

Still, I might have walked away, but then he smugly dared me to try and take the coveted ice cream. So I kissed him. And distracted that mint-chip right out of his hands.

Okay, it was a dirty move, but desperate times and all that. Besides, I never expected he’d be my new neighbor.

An annoying neighbor who takes great pleasure in reminding me that I owe him ice cream but would happily accept more kisses as payment. An irresistible neighbor who keeps me up while playing guitar naked–spectacularly naked–in his living room.

Clearly, avoidance is key. Except nothing about Jax is easy to ignore—not the way he makes me laugh, or that his particular brand of darkness matches mine, or how one look from him melts me faster than butter under a hot sun.

Neither of us believes in love or forever. Yet we’re quickly becoming each other’s addiction. But we could be more. We could be everything.

All we have to do is trust enough to fall.

Muses & Melodies by Rebecca Yarros 

Muses & Melodies by Rebecca Yarros

If you want a troubled rock star, Nixon Winters might take the cake from Muses & Melodies by Rebecca Yarros. His past is incredibly tragic, and boy, is he a troubled soul. All I wanted to do was give him a hug. 

His relationship with Zoe is a bit of a slow burn, as she’s tasked with keeping him on the straight and narrow. Watching trust and open up to Zoe was incredibly satisfying and emotional. If you like force proximity, this one is perfect for you!

Here’s the blurb:

If I can keep Hush Note’s leading guitarist, Nixon Winters, on the straight and narrow for the next six months, I’ll finally get my own band to manage—assuming we don’t kill each other first.

The egotistical, irritating rock star is fresh out of rehab, but it’s obvious his demons followed him home—and now I’m sleeping down the hall. I’ve watched him self-destruct every summer, and with album deadlines and tour dates looming, I can’t let it happen again. My career is in his hands.

But tattoos can’t cover every scar, and I’m starting to see through his trademark, irresistible charm to the damage beneath.

Everyone wants the rock star.
I’m falling for the man.

If he doesn’t let me in,
he’ll never break the cycle—
And when these six months are up,
I might be the one left broken.

Who are your favorite fictional troubled rock stars? Let me know in the comments!

ARC Review: Ruby Fever by Ilona Andrews

Ruby Fever by Ilona Andrews
Ruby Fever
Ilona Andrews
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: August 23, 2022
Series or Standalone: Hidden Legacy #6
Links: Amazon Barnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 5 Stars


CW:  Murder; blood; warfare; emotional/financial abuse; reference to the murder of a pregnant woman

I don’t even know where to start or how to summarize my thoughts on this book. I was literally speechless after reading it and feeling so many things. This book destroyed me in the best possible way. I’m just sitting here, days after finishing it, in awe of Ilona Andrews’ talents.

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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


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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5 Book Series to Read While You Wait for Season 2 of Bridgerton

Happy Bridgerton month! We’re officially a few weeks away from the premiere of season 2 of Netflix’s smash hit Bridgerton, and I am so excited.

And I’m even more excited for season 2 as The Viscount Who Loved Me is tied with When He Was Wicked as my favorite book from the series.

If you’ve already read all the Bridgerton books and are looking for some other historical romances to check out, here are a few series centered on a central family (or two!) that might hit the spot:

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