Review: Forbidden by Beverly Jenkins

Forbidden by Beverly Jenkins
Forbidden
Beverly Jenkins
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: January 26, 2016
Series or Standalone: Old West #1
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 4 Stars

MY REVIEW

CW: Slavery; racism; racial slurs; gun violence; death; reference to suicide, rape, war

Forbidden was my first Beverly Jenkins book, but it won’t be my last! I adored Jenkins’ writing style and how all her characters and settings are imbued with such life and personality that they jump off the page.

Forbidden is also my first adult Western romance, a subgenre I am now fully exploring with my reading as I’m fascinated by it, and it’s nice to escape from the ballrooms of Regency England for a change. However, Westerners can be very fraught given the legacy of slavery in this country. I know that not everyone is comfortable reading stories set in that era for that reason.

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Review: What I Did for a Duke by Julie Anne Long

What I Did for a Duke by Julie Anne Long
What I Did for a Duke
Julie Anne Long
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: February 22, 2011
Series or Standalone: Pennyroyal Green #5
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 4.5 Stars


MY REVIEW

What I Did for a Duke is a delicious historical romance. I don’t think I’ve ever described a book as delicious before, but that’s the perfect word for this one. And with every book I read in the Pennyroyal Green series, the more I fall in love with the characters and series as a whole.

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Review: Shadow’s Claim by Kresley Cole

Shadow's Claim by Kresley Cole
Shadow’s Claim
Kresley Cole
Publisher: Pocket Books
Publication Date: November 27, 2012
Series or Standalone: Immortals After Dark #12; The Dacians #1
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 4 Stars

MY REVIEW

CW: Violence; gore; PTSD/panic attacks; kidnapping

I read this book back in April 2022, but I am just reviewing it now so forgive me if this is more high-level of a review than normal as I didn’t take as in-depth notes as I normally do! 

Shadow’s Claim is book 12 in the Immortals After Dark series and also serves as book 1 in The Dacians series (a spinoff that is intertwined with IAD) and served as a nice change of pace to some of the really heavy storylines coming out of the Torture Island arc of IAD. 

This book surprised me as I wasn’t sure what to expect going into it! The plot, the world, the romance, everything was so good!  

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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: 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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Audiobook Review: Love & Other Disasters by Anita Kelly

Love & Other Disasters by Anita Kelly
Love & Other Disasters
By Anita Kelly
Narrator: Lindsey Dorcus
Publisher: Forever
Publication Date: January 18, 2022
Series or Standalone: Standalone
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Overall Rating: 4.5 Stars

Performance Rating: 5 Stars

Story Rating:4 Stars

MY REVIEW

CW: Misgendering; enbyphobia; divorce; strained parental relationships

I had seen a handful of folks gushing over Love & Other Disasters on IG back when it was published, and fate would have my audiobook come in on the first day of Pride month! This delightful cooking show romance was a beautiful story of queer love. 

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Audiobook Review: One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston

One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston
One Last Stop
Casey McQuiston
Narrator: Natalie Naudus
Publisher: Macmillan Audio
Publication Date: June 1, 2021
Series or Standalone: Standalone
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Overall Rating:4 Stars
Performance Rating: 5 Stars
Story Rating:3.5 Stars

AUDIOBOOK REVIEW

CW: Homophobia; racism

I went into this book with zero knowledge of the plot as silly old me didn’t read the synopsis. Color me surprised that there was time travel in this book! Once the suspension of disbelief kicked in, I liked this book despite some of its flaws.

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ARC Review: All the Duke I Need by Caroline Linden

All the Duke I Need by Caroline Linden
All the Duke I Need
Caroline Linden
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: April 26, 2022
Series or Standalone: Desperately Seeking Duke #3
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 4.5 Stars


MY REVIEW

All the Duke I Need took me by surprise in the best way! I went into this book with no expectations but found it so cute and ended up loving it by the end. The romance was adorable, and I loved how Caroline Linden brought all the pieces together to solve for the lost heir to the Carlyle dukedom that has been central to the plot of the Desperately Seeking Duke series.

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Review: I Kissed An Earl by Julie Anne Long

I Kissed An Earl by Julie Anne Long

I Kissed An Earl
Julie Anne Long
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: June 29, 2010
Series or Standalone: Pennyroyal Green #4
Links: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
Rating: 4.5 Stars


MY REVIEW

CW: Slavery; racism; violence; pregnancy

Who thought peeling a potato could be so fraught with sexual tension? Seriously. 

I adored I Kissed An Earl, the fourth book in Julie Anne Long’s Pennyroyal Green series. This book had a little bit of everything. You have forced proximity, pirates, enemies-to-lovers, adventures on the high sea and sexy potato peeling. What is not to like?

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