Blogger Themes, Contemporary Romance, Fiction, Review Books, Romantic Suspense

Charlie (Cultivated #1) by Elin Peer


Charlie (Cultivated #1)Charlie by Elin Peer
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

BLURB: Charles, the reserved, mysterious, and unattainable guy I had a major crush on in college, got tangled up with the wrong crowd. Being the heir to one of the largest business dynasties in the US made Charles a target for the narcissistic and cunning cult leader O’Brien. Now, I’m flying to Dublin to get him out. “

With degrees in both anthropology and psychology, twenty-seven-year-old Liv is convinced that she can resist being sucked into Conor O’Brien’s cult. But it’s been years since she and Charles last met; will he even remember her and will he trust her?

Charles and Liv are about to learn just how dangerous it is to go up against a possessive psychopath like Conor O’Brien.

Charlie is the first installment in Elin Peer’s contemporary romance series Cultivated, which offers suspense and drama. Like all her books, this one has a fast pace, lots of great dialogue, and it leaves you wanting more.


A fascinating story and masterful storytelling. This story had it all: action, suspense, intrigue, romance and redemption. What I love about Elin Peer’s stories is that I always feel I was treated to a story unlike the routine and cliche tropes that are so abundant in the romance genre. In this particular novel, we are treated to an insider look into the intense fear of family members when their loved ones are caught in the snare of a cult.

Charlotte Christensen aka Liv or Charlie met Charles Robertson at a coffee shop by accident. At the time they were both going by the nickname “Charlie”. There was a spark there, but nothing serious materialized from their college flirting. Five years later, Liv was contacted by Charles’ grandfather who wants a friend to help rescue Charles from a cult that was siphoning off his inheritance. This opportunity gave Liv another chance to reconnect with Charles, but he wasn’t the man she remembered. To save Charles, Liv had outmaneuver a sociopath a cult leader with Charles’ love and life as the prize.

I don’t know much about cult except what we see on the news but my nerves were jarred. I enjoyed the glimpse into a cult’s intricate layering in order to brainwashing people of various intelligence. It was a lesson on how masterminds sense esteem issues and use it to their advantage while gaining their absolute dedication and loyalty. It was a gently reminder that even the smartest person has vulnerabilities that can be exploited by devious people.

My favorite part of the story was Liv and Charles reconnecting. It felt like young love all over again and it added some pleasure and levity to this heavy situation. Liv and Charles were really nice individuals and they made a sweet couple. I was completely absorbed into this struggle for Charles. The author skillfully weaved an engrossing tale. What an excellent beginning to a new series.

*Thank you to the author for the advanced reading copy. My opinions of the book are solely my own.

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Falling into Fall TV (2019)


It’s Premiere time for television and I am setting my DVR to record new shows as well as making sure my old shows are still set to record.

These are the shows that I enjoy and follow religiously. What are your staple shows?

There were some very intriguing commercials advertising new shows that made me add them to my line up. I usually give shows 4-5 episodes to hook me. So by the end of October, I should know which shows are keepers and which ones aren’t for me.

What new shows caught your attention? What shows are people recommending to you?

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Audiobook tag


I discovered this tag at Blue Mood Cafe  and thought it would be fun to do for this month’s celebration of audiobooks. I have been chatting books with Jonetta for years on goodreads so let’s do it!


Have you always listened to audiobooks or when did you begin?

My husband encouraged me to try audiobooks a few years ago when I would ride the train an hour each way to work. My first book was Guilty Pleasures by Laurel K. Hamilton (Book 1, Anita Blake). The narrator Kimberly Alexis was amazing and I was hooked. I tried a couple of other book before I realized that a narrator could make or break my enjoyment.

 

What is your favorite audiobook?

That’s impossible so I will pick my top five in no particular order..
1. Lothaire by Kresley Cole (Robert Petkoff, narrator)
2. From Lukov with Love by Mariana Zapata (Callie Dalton, Narrato)
3. The Witness by Nora Robert (Julia Whelan, narrator)
4. Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas (Rosalyn Landor)
5. Sempre by J.M. Darhower (Carla Mercer-Meyer)

What is my least favorite thing about audiobooks?

A Monotoned narrator can really bore me and make me lose interest. Some make narrators have terrible female voices too.

What do you think is the difference in experience between physically reading a book and listening to it?

The difference to me is that I get someone who knows how to properly pronounce words (I hope) and the cadence of the reading is different from my own. Some narrators do a great job conveying humor, sadness etc. I feel like a kid being read a bedtime story to. Also if its a smutty book, I feel like someone is whispering something naughty in my ear. hehehe.

How and when do you listen?

I listen on my phone, in my car, sometimes on my tv via the audible app while I’m doing mindless household chores, grocery shopping and laundry. I listen while I am in bed, exercising, pretending to pay attention at work etc. I listen all day.

What style/genre do you prefer?

I don’t have a genre I prefer since I mostly read romance. I pretty much listen to all my reading selections if they are on audio.  I do have narrator that I avoid like the plague. If I see their name, I opt for the e-book instead.

What are some audiobook/narrator recommendations?

I highly recommend with a male and female narrator. Top five favorites are Rosalyn Landor, Julia Whelan, Therese Plummer, Lauren Fortgang and Jeffrey Kafer.   I do have honorable mentions like Bahni Turipin, Callie Dalton, Robert Petkoff, Shane East and Tristan James

What are your thoughts about audiobooks?

Feel free to do your own version of this tag!

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Tag: The Liebster Award


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This is the first time I’ve been tagged so I’m excited to post a few answers even though, it took forever for me to publish this post. Better later than never… right? I was nominated by Literary Everything. Thank you, Lady B!

THE LIEBSTER AWARD RULES

  1. Acknowledge the blog that gave it to you and display the award
  2. Answer 11 questions that the blogger gives you
  3. Give 11 random facts about yourself
  4. Nominate 11 blogs and notify them of their nomination
  5. Give these blogs 11 questions to answer

11 Questions From Lady B:

What’s the worst book you’ve ever read?

Twist Me by Anna Zaires and Beast by A. Zavarelli are among ten books that I rated 1-star rating on goodreads. Both area popular dark romances, complete with kidnapping and rape etc. They were disturbing and I didn’t enjoy anything about them, not the writing, the characters or the journey. Nothing!

What’s the one thing you can’t live without?
My family and a book to read.

Do you have a best friend or have you ever had one?
Yes. my best friend Dee and I have been friends since 1997. We are opposites. It’s interesting because she is the carbon copy of my husband. Conversely, I am the carbon copy of her husband. I guess opposites really do attract.

Excitement or routine?
Excitement. I like variety. I prefer to eat at a different restaurant every time because I like to try new things. There are a few things I like to remain routine like Thankgiving. No new recipes like Karen’s Macaroni and Cheese. However Christmas every year, we try a different cuisine. Last year for Christmas we did a Barbecue theme, the year before Italian and this year will probably be Thai food. Thanksgiving is sacred though, turkey and the fixings, my mother and I also cook a lot of Nigerian food, then we watch football.

What’s your favourite genre?
Romance! It used to be Historical Romance, then Paranormal Romance, but now, it is Contemporary Romance. Those are all still subgenres of Romance.

How many languages can you speak?
Three: Igbo, English and Spanish.

Which music do you listen to?
Pop music, R&B, some Hip-Hop. I am the biggest Celine Dion and Whitney Houston fan. I love music that tells a story and makes me feel it. Current music that talks of nothing annoys me to no end!

If you wrote an autobiography of yourself, what would the title be?
“Always Hopeful.” I am a girl that believes that the Glass is always half full. I am an optimistic to the hilt. So if there is the slimmest possibility, I am going to hold on to that hope and I support underdogs.

If you could visit only one country in the world, which would you choose?
Italy. So much history especially of oppression and violence. I want to the see the beautiful and also examine the pain the Romans inflicted on all. I was the biggest fan of Spartacus, which came on Starz. I loved that series.

What skill would you like to master?
Sewing. My mother and mother in law are seamstresses. I can put on a button. I wish I would know how to use their sewing machines. They make their own nigerian attire too. I am so jealous but clearly too lazy to ask them to teach me.

Music. I also wished that I had continued with piano and the viola. When my parents were paying for it, I saw it as a chore and that I was being forced. Now that I have to pay for it myself, I keep thinking “Damnnnn, that ish is expensive.”

What’s the best thing about getting older?
I feel less stressed about thing. Less concerned about what people think. More urgency to do things that I have been putting off. I am less judgmental. I also think sex is better now and maybe because I have less fear about propriety 😀

11 Random Facts About Me:

1. I am a HUGE sports fan and enjoy most sports. I watch more sports than my husband.

2. I still watch Soap Operas. I watch General Hospital, Days of Our Lives, The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful.

3. I don’t sleep more than 3-4 hours a night (for the past ten years). It’s getting harder now that I am older and I feel tired all the time, but after 10 oclock when my kids go to bed is when I can have some quiet time to myself and relax. I end up bingeing tv until 2am-ish and have to wake up around 6am.

4. I am chronically late to work and events, and I am not a great rule follower. I like to live in the grey areas and push boundaries.

5. I have to eat breakfast everyday, even if it at night. But I can’t eat lunch or dinner food in the morning. For instance, I can’t eat pizza or a sandwich in the morning, but I can eat french toast or omelet at night.

6. I have 981 audiobooks on audible. It is crazy since you can’t even loan those books out. Once you read them, they just sit there. I think in 2020, I will go back to buying books. At least I can share them with people…well, I won’t loan out books that I like since my friends don’t return them.

7. I love period piece shows: Spartacus, Downton Abbey, Shaka Zulu, The Last Kingdom, Vikings, Reign, Dances with Wolves, Game of Thrones (Seasons 1-5 before HBO was left to their own devices), Braveheart.

8. I love Boy Bands. I have seen Boyz II Men four times in Concert. I went to see New Kids on the Block last Spring. I hope to see New Edition when they return to Dallas. I have plans to see Backstreet Boys in Dallas.

9. I walk around my house naked all the time so people better knock before coming into my home. They will be boob-flashed because the first thing I do when I come home is remove my Bra and free myself.

10. I prefer to see the movie before I watch a film. It allows me to give the characters mannerisms and a face other than what I would imagine. Also, it feels like getting an outline or cliff notes version and the book adds detail and shade to the movie version. It is very rare that a movie is on par with the book so I hate that feeling of disappointment. For instance, The Host by Stephenie Meyer was a great book and a terrible movie. Same with The Darkest Mind by Alexandra Bracken or Divergent by Veronica Roth.

I saw the Color Purple before I read it. Same with Twilight, Five Feet Apart and I enjoyed the books much more AFTER the movie.

My 11 Nominations are:
Jonetta at Blue Mood Cafe
Lara at Naija Book Bae
Carla at Carla Loves to Read
Jennifer at Tar Heel Reader
Nickimags at Secret Library Book Blog
Sophie at Beware of the Reader
Melanie at Meltotheany
Nick at Book Bastion
Jessica at Jessica’s Reading Room
Susan at Susan loves Books
Zuky at Bookbum

My Questions For You:

Does your name have a special meaning?

Do you have a hobby, craft or talent?

Who is your favorite musician? Favorite song?

What was your first job?

What is the best book you have read in 2019?

Have you been to an author book signing?

Your top five favorite authors or top five favorite books

What meal could you eat everyday?

Who is your favorite actor and actress?

What is the best new tv show (and movie) you discovered in 2019? This must be something new to you.

What do you wish you could tell your 18 year old self? (An advise or admonishment you wish you had known at age 18)

 

 

 

 

Audiobook, Paranormal Romance, Review Books, Urban Fantasy

Review: Sin & Chocolate (Demigods of San Francisco #1


www.goodreads.com/book/show/43530043-sin-chocolate

<a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43530043-sin-chocolate&#8221; style=”float: left; padding-right: 20px”><img border=”0″ alt=”Sin & Chocolate (Demigods of San Francisco #1)” src=”https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1547136734m/43530043.jpg&#8221; /></a><a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43530043-sin-chocolate”>Sin & Chocolate</a> by <a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7010202.K_F_Breene”>K.F. Breene</a><br/>

My rating: <a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2686529961″>4 of 5 stars</a><br /><br />

This book was a welcomed surprise because its is t feel like the same old same old. Sure it had shifters, but the characters felt new, the plot was different and that was enough to keep me engaged.<br /><br />Alexis was a young woman caring for two foster kids, Daisy and Mordecai, when she almost got run over by Kieran, a demigod. Lexie was busy trying to find a blanket as well as earn a living to take care of her wards. Mordecai was sick and Daisy was just a smart mouth teenager. <br />In this book, there was tiers of power depending upon your magical gift. Alexis was thought to be the lowest level of magic and Kieran was the highest. But Kieran senses that Alexis was hissing something and thus he felt compelled to find out what.<br /><br />I enjoyed the interactions between Lexie and Daisy and Mordecai. They were more siblings than parent/kid. There was love and fierce loyalty. Kieran wasn’t a bad guy but his goals to help hi mom and himself were his main objective, so protecting Lexie and the kids wasn’t his first priority. For that, I couldn’t trust him completely. I hope in book 2 we see him in a better light.

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<a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/4386752-ezinwanyi”>View all my reviews</a>

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Book Tag: What’s On My Bookshelf?


Passed by this tag on Bookish Wisp.  I wasn’t tagged by Justine but I liked the game and her answers so I want to play too 😀

Rules:
1. Link back to the original creator, Naty @ Naty’s Bookshelf
2. Also link back to the person who tagged you!
3. Name one book for each category. Try not to repeat books to make this more fun!
4. Tag at least 5 people.

*Click on the cover to read my review, though a couple lack reviews from me if I read them long time before I started blogging*

A Book You Got as a Gift

I won this book on Goodreads and I enjoyed this chick-lit since I am iffy about office romances. But the characters grew and learned to take risks in their lives.

A Childhood Book

Best Friends (Sweet Valley Twins #1) by Francine Pascal
Anastasia Krupnik (Anastasia Krupnik #1) by Lois Lowry

I couldn’t choose between these two. Sweet Valley Twins was my first real series that I stayed with for years even moving onto Sweet Valley High.
Anastasia Krupnik was a series that cracked me up the more than Ramona Beezus. It even fueled by desire to visit Russia which we eventually did in High School.I can’t wait for my daughter to get to these two series.

A Magical Book

Nice Dragons Finish Last (Heartstriker #1) by Rachel Aaron

A couple of goodreads friends kept recommending this book but I wasn’t interested because I have a bias against ugly book covers. Plus, the blurb didn’t really stir interest. Then I entered Bingo reading challenge where I needed a Dragon book and this particular book was the audible deal of the day for $4.95. I decided what the heck! Let’s just say I finished all four audiobooks that same month. It wasn’t my usual style but I found the plot creative, different and the interpersonal relationships intriguing. So while this book was magical in the sense that it was a complete surprise and delight. Oh yeah, it does have magic in it too.

A Romantic Book

Then Came You (Gamblers #1) by Lisa Kleypas

According to Goodreads, This is the most read author on my bookshelf. Historical romance is my go-to genre and this book was one of the first audiobooks that I listened to. It not only introduced me to Lisa Kleypas but to the narrator Rosalyn Landor. Both are now at the top of my favorites list. But this story was everything I love in Historical Romances.

A Steamy Book

Lover Revealed (Black Dagger Brotherhood #4) by J.R. Ward
Pleasure Unbound (Demonica #1) by Larissa Ione

Books with vampires are almost always going to be steamy. The plot, character development and steamy factor were all 5-stars. Top notch writing makes these two some of my favorite series.

An Old Book

Blues Dancing by Diane McKinney-Whetstone

When I read this book in high school, it was one of the first narratives that implied that women needed to stand on their own two feet or risk always falling down. The heroine was always depending on the men in her life to take care of her, tell her what to do and rescue her. She was only able to really take control and go after what she really wanted when she took time to figure out what SHE wanted. She was a weak woman and she had to grow. I loved that message.

A Book That Makes You Happy and/or Laugh

The Gravity of Us by Brittainy Cherry

This story pushed all of my mommy buttons and just made me smile, shed a tear, chuckle etc. I love stories where babies force people to grow up and become better men/women. Brittainy Cherry is among my list of angst writers like Mia Sheridan, Colleen Hoover etc. She is an auto-buy author now.

A Book That Makes You Emotional

The Fault in our Stars by John Green

I have lost family members to cancer and this insidious disease is devastating. I loved this story and read it right after my aunt lost her battle. I cried a lot and thinking about Gus and Hazel makes me emotional because of the innocence at that age. The movie wasn’t done well in my opinion. Plus I couldn’t get over the fact that the actors played siblings in the Divergent movie that came out RIGHT BEFORE this one. So when they were interacting romantically, it grossed me out. I kept thinking “why is Tris kissing her brother Caleb?” It ruined it for me.

A Book Whose Ending You Dislike

Allegiant (Divergent #3) by Veronica Roth
Requiem (Delirium #3) by Lauren Oliver

I read these books back in 2013 and I am still seething about them. You can read my reviews to truly see what I mean. But the author let me down with the ending. I don’t think I have read another book by Lauren Oliver. I did try book 1 in Veronica Roth’s new series but I don’t trust her enough to follow the series.

A Book You Wish Had Illustrations

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

I could visualize this one in my head and it was raw. I would have loved to see faces and the anguish etc that went along with this story that left visceral reactions in those who read it.

A Book or Genre That You Love Reading When It’s Raining

Destiny’s Embrace (Destiny #1) by Beverly Jenkins

 

I wish to tag any and all who want to join in and have fun, but especially the following bloggers:
Susan at Susanlovesbooks
Jennifer at jennifertarheelreader
Lady B at Literary Everything
Justine at Bookish Wisps
Carla at Carla loves to Read
Sophie at Beware of the Reader

What books are on your bookshelf? Have you read any books from my list? If not I totally recommend them.