Book Review – You Let Me In by Camilla Bruce

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Synopsis

Cassandra Tipp is dead…or is she?

After all, the notorious recluse and eccentric bestselling novelist has always been prone to flights of fancy–everyone in town remembers the shocking events leading up to Cassie’s infamous trial (she may have been acquitted, but the insanity defense only stretches so far).

Cassandra Tipp has left behind no body–just her massive fortune, and one final manuscript.

Then again, there are enough bodies in her past–her husband Tommy Tipp, whose mysterious disembowelment has never been solved, and a few years later, the shocking murder-suicide of her father and brother.

Cassandra Tipp will tell you a story–but it will come with a terrible price. What really happened, out there in the woods–and who has Cassie been protecting all along? Read on, if you dare…

 

My Review
3.5 out of 5 stars

I feel like I am going to be horribly inadequate in reviewing this book because I simply just don’t know what to say. I don’t know how I feel. I ended up with more questions than when I started the book. I didn’t hate this book but I didn’t really love it either. However, one thing is for sure…this author knows how to tell a story! I finished this book in less than 24 hours. I was so intrigued and was anxious and excited to get to the end of the story.

Cassie is so firm in her belief of the faeries that there were plenty of times that she had me believing they were real as well. But then there were times when I thought the faeries were just her coping mechanism from the abuse that she was going through.

But then…maybe both things are true. Just because something is true, doesn’t make the other thing untrue, right?

You’ll have to read this book and decide for yourself what you believe happened.

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review – Winter by Marissa Meyer

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Synopsis

Princess Winter is admired for her grace, kindness and beauty, despite the scars on her face. She’s said to be even more breath-taking than her stepmother, Queen Levana…

When Winter develops feelings for the handsome palace guard, Jacin, she fears the evil Queen will crush their romance before it has a chance to begin.

But there are stirrings against the Queen across the land. Together with the cyborg mechanic, Cinder, and her allies, Winter might even find the power to launch a revolution and win a war that’s been raging for far too long.

Can Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter claim their happily ever afters by defeating Levana once and for all?

 

My Review
4 out of 5 stars

I really enjoyed binging my way through this series. I’m so glad I took a chance on these books. The hype is definitely well deserved. This series will be going near the top of my list of favorite series ever. Listening to the audio books really brought these characters to life for me.

Not gonna lie, I’m tearing up a little now that it’s all over. I’m going to miss these characters a lot. They all feel so real to me!

I enjoyed getting more time with Winter during this book and learning more about her story. I felt so bad for her but I am so glad that she had Jacin at least.

Other than Umbridge from the Harry Potter series, I don’t think I have ever hated a character as much as I hated Queen Levana. Nope, scratch that. She isn’t queen. She’s a freaking tyrant.

I’m happy with the ending for the most part. There’s just one small thing that bugged me. That, and the fact that for a very large portion of this book it seemed like nothing was happening, is why this wasn’t a five star read for me.

I’m looking forward to reading the extra books, Stars Above and Fairest!

Book Review – Fudge and Jury by Ellie Alexander

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Synopsis

It’s almost spring in Ashland, Oregon, and the town is preparing for the Shakespeare and the annual Chocolate Festival. Business is cookin’ at Torte, and the store is expanding as Jules’ team whips up crèpes filled with mascarpone cheese and dark chocolate. Torte stands a chance of being this year’s confectionery belle of the ball! Life couldn’t be sweeter—unless murder taints the batter.

Evan Rowe, of Confections Couture, makes a chocolate fountain that would put Willy Wonka to shame, and his truffles are to die for—literally? Yes, the world-renowned chocolatier has just turned up dead…right after sampling a slice of Jules’ decadent four-layer chocolate cake. Now all eyes are on Jules as she tries to find the mysterious ingredient in her own recipe. Can she sift out the truth before another contestant bites the buttercream?

 

My Review
5 out of 5 stars

Another amazing book in the Bakeshop mystery series!

I read this book as another buddy read with @gypsy.reads over on Instagram and absolutely loved it. I have really enjoyed binging my way through this series with her.

These characters feel so real to me now. I love spending more time with the Torte family with each book that I read from this series. I wish more business owners could be like Jules and Helen. They are so amazing with their staff and truly care about them.

I loved the mystery in this book. The possibility of someone having pulled off the perfect crime was really scary and suspenseful. There were parts that gave me chills. There were several different suspects and the reveal of the killer gave me chills also.

I can’t wait to see what the next book brings!

Book Review – Caught Bread Handed by Ellie Alexander

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Synopsis

Jules Capshaw is still chewing over her husband Carlos’s return to Ashland, Oregon. Could there be too many cooks in the kitchen? Whatever is stirring between those two will have to wait. Despite the Oregon Shakespeare Festival being dark for the winter, the bakeshop is bustling, the dough is rolling, and there’s no rest for the weary…especially when murder is thrown into the mix.

When Mindy Nolan, the owner of a new restaurant in town, turns up dead, the batter at hand thickens. Jules knows that there was bad blood between Mindy and others in town, and tracking down the killer could prove to be an unwelcome treat. And to top it all off, there’s Carlos, who is pleading—with those delicious dark eyes and sexy Spanish accent—for Jules to take him back. Is home where the heart is or will she make a fresh start…and risk getting burned?

 

My Review
5 out of 5 stars

I am obsessed with this series! I am enjoying getting to know the crew at Torte. They are all starting to feel like an extended family.

This book was a bit different from the others in this series but I loved it! I had all the feels while reading this book, y’all.

The angst was killing me, but in a good way. I cried while reading, too. Twice! Cozies never make me cry. Kudos to Ellie for making the emotions in this book feel so real. I love that we got some more time with Carlos in this book. He is really starting to grow on me and I was really sad to see him return to the ship, even though I knew it was coming. I am rooting for him and Jules to be able to work something out so they can save their marriage. I really like Thomas, but just as a friend for Jules.

The reveal of the killer and the take down scenes had my heart racing. I sped through the end of the book to see what happened next.

Book Review – Cress by Marissa Meyer

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Synopsis

Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.

Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl imprisoned on a satellite since childhood who’s only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a higher price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

 

My Review
5 out of 5 stars

Wow, this book took me on a ride! I felt all the emotions while reading this book. I laughed, of course. Who wouldn’t with Thorne on the crew? I was angry and there was even an instance where I was sobbing. When Cress was telling Thorne her story, I couldn’t help but cry. I felt so bad for her. Some would probably see Cress as a weak character, but with her story and everything she went through, all of her anxiety and fear was true to her character and made her feel so relatable.

I listened to the audio version and once again, the narrator was amazing. She is very good at making you feel what the characters feel. She has brought these characters to life for me and I absolutely love it. I can see myself listening to this series over and over again. The voices for all of the characters are perfect! I especially love the voice for Iko.

I am so excited to get to Winter but at the same time, I’m going to be so sad when this series is over. I love these characters.

Book Review – On Thin Icing by Ellie Alexander

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Synopsis

It’s the dead of winter in the sleepy town of Ashland, which means no tourists-and fewer customers-for Jules Capshaw and her bakery. But when she’s asked to cater an off-season retreat for the directors of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, business starts heating up…until Jules finds a dead body in the freezer.

Someone at the retreat has apparently iced the bartender, a well-known flirt with a legendary temper-that is, before a killer beat him to the punch. Then, from out of nowhere, Jules’s own ex-husband shows up at the shop-and soon becomes a suspect. With accusations piling up higher than the snow-and thicker than a chocolate mousse cake-Jules has to think outside the (recipe) box to find the real culprit…and make sure he gets his just desserts.

 

My Review
5 out of 5 stars

I absolutely loved this book! Book 3 of the Bakeshop mysteries takes us away from Torte to Lake of the Woods resort. I really enjoyed this change in setting. It definitely upped the suspense factor with the characters being trapped in such a small space with a killer.

One of my favorite parts of this book was the interactions between Sterling and Jules. Sterling definitely came out of his shell and stepped up in a major way to help Jules cater the event. He was a huge support to her both in and out of the kitchen. I also loved the interactions between Sterling and Carlos.

I also loved that some progress was made with Carlos and Jules in this book. I can’t wait to see where things go in the next one!

Novella Review – Sweet Dreams by Jamie Schlosser

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Synopsis

Jeff and Ashlyn are stuck in the virgin zone. What’s that? Well, it’s when two people have been dating for several months, but they have yet to make it past first base. The longer it takes for one of them to make a move, the harder it is to just do it already.

But things are about to change.

Jeff has plans. So does Ashlyn. Mission: Drive each other crazy.

If it works, they’ll both get what they want this Valentine’s Day.

 

My Review
5 out of 5 stars

This is a quick, steamy novella featuring a couple from Outcast. Ashlyn and Jeff are both virgins who are wanting to take their relationship to the next level.

Ashlyn and Jeff are so cute together. I haven’t read Outcast yet so I’m looking forward to reading about that book’s couple as well as getting to see how Ashlyn and Jeff started out.

This was a super sweet story with plenty of heat! This is the perfect read leading up to Valentine’s Day.

Book Review – Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

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Synopsis

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison—even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

 

My Review
5 out of 5 stars

I absolutely loved this book. I listened to the audio version since I listened to the audio of Cinder. I am loving doing the audio versions of these books. It just seems to bring the characters to life and I love that. The narrator amazed me with her ability to quickly and seamlessly switch voices for the characters.

I loved Scarlet’s character. Captain Thorne was hilarious and I really enjoyed his interactions with Cinder. This book had several twists and turns and definitely kept me on my toes. I’m looking forward to reading the next book.

Book Review – A Batter of Life and Death by Ellie Alexander

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Synopsis

It’s autumn in Ashland, Oregon-’tis the season for a spiced hot apple cider with a serving (or two) of Torte’s famous peach cobbler. It’s also the perfect time for Jules Capshaw to promote her family’s beloved bake shop by competing in The Pastry Channel’s reality show, Take the Cake. The prize is $25,000. But as Jules quickly learns, some people would kill for that kind of dough. Literally.

Then, just as Jules dusts off her Bavarian Chocolate Cake recipe and cinches up her apron, the corpse of a fellow contestant is discovered-death by buttercream. What began as a fun, tasteful televised adventure has morphed into something of a true-crime detective show for Jules and everybody else on set. Who could have killed Chef Marco, and why? Can Jules sift out the killer before someone else gets burned?

 

My Review
5 out of 5 stars

I buddy read this book with a new friend of mine over on Instagram. We had a lot of fun reading this book and discussing it together. She was even able to chat with the author to ask for her dream cast for the characters if this series were to ever become a TV show. How cool is that?! 🙂

But anyway, I really enjoyed this book. I loved catching up with the residents of Torte that I came to love during the first book in this series. Adam, Stephanie, Sterling, Thomas, Jules, and her mother are all great characters and I was so happy to catch up with them all.

The mystery was very well written and there were plenty of suspects to choose from. I was able to narrow down the killer but had the wrong motive. Either way, the reveal gave me chills and I love it when that happens!

I am looking forward to seeing how things will turn out between Jules, Thomas, and Carlos in the next book. I can’t wait to read it!

Book Review – Cinder by Marissa Meyer

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Synopsis

A forbidden romance.
A deadly plague.
Earth’s fate hinges on one girl . . .

CINDER, a gifted mechanic in New Beijing, is also a cyborg. She’s reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s sudden illness. But when her life becomes entwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she finds herself at the centre of a violent struggle between the desires of an evil queen – and a dangerous temptation.

Cinder is caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal. Now she must uncover secrets about her mysterious past in order to protect Earth’s future.

This is not the fairytale you remember. But it’s one you won’t forget.

 

My Review
5 out of 5 stars

I have had this book on my TBR for years but was really reluctant to read it because of all of the hype and love surrounding it. I tend to not care for overly hyped books and I didn’t want this one to be another disappointment. I am SO glad that I finally caved and gave this book a chance.

I really loved this book. The setting of New Beijing was really interesting and drew me into the story. I loved Cinder’s character but I think my most favorite character from this book was Iko. I loved her to pieces and was furious about what Adri did to her.

I listened to the audio version of this book and absolutely loved the narrator. She had a great voice and was able to make each character’s voice distinct so the reader was sure to know who was speaking.

I can’t wait to read the next book in this series!