Sin and Ink by Naima Simone

Hello Friends! I finished my first ever Naima Simone romance and don’t mind me as I casually binge my way through everything I can find with her name on this year.. I read Sin and Ink which is a romance I have heard nothing but raving reviews on.  Did it live up to all of the hype it gets? Absofreakinglutely!

Sin and Ink by Naima Simone

Published October 15, 2018 by Entangled Publishing, LLC (Scorched)

Audiobook narrated by Rock Engle & Mackenzie Cartwright

4/5 Stars

 

“Sex with Knox, my employer, my friend, my brother in law, is about 31 different flavors of crazy. Inappropriate doesn’t even begin to cover it. But forbidden and practically incestuous does.”

Synopsis:

There’s sin, and then there’s literally going-straight-to-hell sin…

Being in lust with my dead brother’s wife pretty much guarantees that one day I’ll be the devil’s bitch. But Eden Gordon works with me, so it’s getting harder and harder to stay away. I promised my family—and him—I would, though.

My days as an MMA champion are behind me. But whenever I see her, with those wicked curves and soft mouth created for dirty deeds, it’s a knock-down fight to just maintain my distance. “Hard Knox” becomes more than just the name of my tattoo shop. However, surrendering to the forbidden might be worth losing everything…

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My Thoughts:

Sin and Ink had my emotions here there and everywhere. Simone has created this back story to Knox and Eden’s romance that is a complete ode to how forbidden and wrong their attraction to each other. I love a grieving hero story and reading Sin and Ink made me realize it’s been a while since I’ve read a grieving widow story. I liked how in this romance though, Eden lost her husband two years ago, so when we meet her in the book, she is at the point where she is ready to stop grieving and move on. She makes an important point in the book which is basically that she didn’t die with her husband.

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I liked that Knox and Eden didn’t immediately jump each others bones. As the reader we really get a much needed glimpse into the guilt that both of them feel about their attraction to one another. I liked that the author explored this and didn’t have them just going for it. Besides these two grappling with both their guilt and this love and lust that’s ready to explode, there is this constant feeling of walking around on egg shells when it comes to Knox’s family.

Knox’s Mother is still really grieving the death of her son and blames Knox for his death. In the story she spews out some pretty hurtful words his way. I liked the way that his Mother was written. Her still grieving and accusations toward Knox only added to the conflict surrounding the romance.

I listened to Sin and Ink on audio while following along with the ebook and there were a few parts early on in the book that felt a bit slow. These slow parts I will attribute to the male narrator and me having to get use to his narration style.

Not to end off on a negative though, I loved this book. I was addicted to the attraction between Eden and Knox while at the same time listening with my eyes closed and sneaking a peek every once in a while.  It felt so wrong but the love between the two was undeniable. Simone did a great job of of writing what it must feel like the surviving spouse but rather than dwelling on that and focusing the story around it, I loved how our surviving spouse is ready to move on with her life.

Overall this was an emotional roller coaster. It’s very, very sexy. Very descriptive. If that’s not your thing, you’ve been warned..

“My love for him is that of a woman who has experienced the suffering of life and has come out stronger, forced into unbreakable steel. A woman who understands that she doesn’t need a man by her side to complete the picture of who she is but chooses to want him there. My love for his is with the knowledge that heroes aren’t shiny, golden-haired, perfect Gods. They’re men. Scarred, battered, wounded men with feet of clay…and hearts of the purest, most precious gold.”

 

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Some Sort of Crazy by Melanie Harlow

Okay Friends, I haven’t read many series, trilogies or whatever else is out there. Until I started reading romance, I cringed at the thought of continuing on with a cast of characters in multiple books. I was a one and done kind of girl. I am so glad my love of romance has changed my perspective on this crazy way of thinking because I would totally be missing out on trilogies like Melanie Harlow’s, Happy Crazy Love trilogy.  Thanks to a couple of friends on Instagram, I went into book two, Some Sort of Crazy a little aware that I was going to love it..and I did.

Some Sort of Crazy by Melanie Harlow

Published November 17, 2015

4/5 Stars

Narrated on Audiobook by Nelson Hobbs and Lucy Malone

 

“The entire night was just ours, like we existed outside of time, in our own little world.”

 

Synopsis:

When a psychic tells Natalie Nixon her life is about to be upended by a mysterious stranger, she laughs it off. After all, she has everything she’s ever wanted—a successful bakery, a the perfect boyfriend, and the keys to her dream house.

Who could possibly make her want to throw all that away?

Then Miles Haas comes back to town.

But he’s no stranger—they’ve known each other since high school. Plus, he’s only around for the summer, he’s still a shameless playboy, and he makes a living writing articles for a men’s magazine with titles like ‘Should You Bang the Boss’s Daughter? A Flowchart’ and ‘Butt Stuff for Beginners: A Field Guide.’

He’s not the man of her dreams, and she’s not about to abandon everything she’s worked so hard for just for a little fun. Except he makes her laugh like no one else, smells like heaven, and looks sexy as hell in those panty-melting glasses.

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My Thoughts:

Some Sort of Crazy was a fun roller coaster ride while also being sexy as hell. Where with book 1, Some Sort of Happy, the vibe felt very dark, the vibe in Some Sort of Crazy felt very light hearted and just completely different. I liked that although following one of the sisters of the main character from book 1 and still feeling pretty invested in this world and characters, this book was able to stand on it’s own. You can totally skip book one and read this one without it..but don’t! 

I liked Natalie as a main character. She gives you the good girl vibes without feeling ridiculous. I love that she owns her own coffee shop. She’s been in a relationship with her boyfriend Dan for forever and long story short, things happen and they break up. This is shortly after Miles, a long time friend of Natalie’s has come home. After Natalie thank you next’s Dan, she allows herself the liberty of hanging out with Miles.

Miles, oh Miles. Miles is a single guy, living the single guy dream. He does what he wants unapologetically but has always secretly been in love with Natalie. He is a blogger with a blog dedicated to different sexual situations he has found himself in with women.

Total friends to lovers. Guy finally gets the girl kind of story. I liked that Natalie’s cutting Douchebag Dan off had nothing to do with Miles and everything to do with the strength she realized she had. I was happy to not have any moments where she regretted cutting him off. That is mostly thanks to Miles, but despite the reputation he has built for himself, I respected that Miles respected Natalie enough to not allow anything initially to happen that she may regret later.

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I really enjoyed the family aspect you get in this one. It was there in book one too, but I felt like we got more insight into the relationship between the 3 sisters in Some Sort of Crazy. Even Sebastian, the love interest from book one. He has obviously become part of the family, and I liked seeing him written into certain scenes as one of the family members.

In true Harlow fashion, this book was sexy as hell. Very descriptive sex scenes that will leave you breathless. In this story though, during each sex scene I found myself rooting for Natalie. She deserved each and every moment of it after what she had been through with Douchebag Dan. Miles was crazy about her and wanted to make her happy and make her feel good. When Miles begins to realize he is feeling something he’s never felt before, it truly felt earth shattering. I had to laugh at him, because as he begins to realize and question his feelings for Natalie, he thinks he’s getting sick.

Now, I will forewarn you-this romance does have a twist that I know many people aren’t fond of. I typically roll my eyes at it as well, but in Some Sort of Crazy, it worked. It made sense, and I honestly can’t imagine the twist having went any other direction and actually working.

Onto book 3  I go. Let me know if you’ve given this trilogy a go, or anything by Melanie Harlow. Until next time, take care of yourselves. We will chat again soon. xo

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Book Review: The Coppersmith Farmhouse

The Coppersmith Farmhouse by Devney Perry

Published March 19, 2017

Jamison Valley Series

4/5 Stars

 

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Plot Summary:

One old farmhouse brought them together. It could also tear them apart.

Gigi has just uprooted her whole world to start a new life. The unexpected gift of a farmhouse in small-town Montana is just what she and her daughter need to escape big-city loneliness. The last thing she needs is attitude from the town’s sheriff, the most perfectly attractive and ruggedly handsome man she’s ever laid eyes on—and a complete jerk.

Jess knows all about women like Gigi. Beautiful. Sexy. Scheming. She’s stolen his sanctuary, the farmhouse that should have been his. But along with a face full of freckles, she’s got a sharp wit and a backbone of steel—something he doesn’t discover until after making a complete fool of himself. If he can earn back her trust and win her heart, he might just find the home he’s always needed.  

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My Thoughts:

Hello Friends! I can knock reading my first Devney Perry off my bucket list. I hauled. I read. I was blown away. What has taken me so long to read my first book by this author?

I skimmed over the synopsis on the back of The Coppersmith Farmhouse before reading it. I knew it was about a woman who gets a farmhouse in Montana, and uproots her and her daughter’s lives.  This story was these things and more, so much more.

I love the small Montana town vibe.  I didn’t feel like we got a ton of back story as to why Gigi, the main character was able or willing to just uproot her life without looking back although you do eventually learn that the father of her daughter was a complete jerk, but it seemed like she had been doing fine without him. She inherits the farmhouse from a patient, turned Father figure named Ben after he passed away.

The caretaker for the farmhouse has been the now town sheriff named Jess who once learns about Gigi, believes she is a gold digger who tricked Ben for his money. He is a real jerk to her in the beginning, but he learns how wrong he was about her and her intentions with Ben.

I liked that this story cut out all the angst and the relationship between Gigi and Jess forms very early into the story. Jess puts a lot into pursuing Gigi once he realizes how big of a jerk he’s been and he is persistent. He knows he wants her, he sees her hesitation but he sticks to it. The book is really them navigating their relationship as a new couple and a reminder to how quickly that new love can be taken from you.

Gigi is such an awesome Mom and when Jess comes into the picture, he is adorable with her little girl.

Oh boy, was this book sexy. I didn’t expect the sexy times. I thought this was going to be a sweet, small town romance, but as I sat outside at the coffee shop and the sexy times scene came on, I couldn’t hide my smirk.

The plot twists, adding a suspense element were wonderful and really added a different vibe to the story while also being a reminder that even small town America has it’s issues and nowhere is really safe.

Overall, I loved this book. I am so happy I hauled the entire series so I can jump right into the next book.

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