Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Review - Elite by Rachel Van Dyken

For Tracey Rooks, life with her grandparents on a Wyoming farm has always been simple. But after her grandmother's death, Tracey is all her grandfather has. So when Eagle Elite University announces its annual scholarship lottery, Tracey jumps at the opportunity to secure their future and enters. She isn't expecting much-but then she wins. And life as she knows it will never be same . . .

The students at Eagle Elite are unlike any she's ever met . . . and they refuse to make things easy for her. There's Nixon, gorgeous, irresistible, and leader of a group that everyone fears: The Elect. Their rules are simple. 1. Do not touch The Elect. 2. Do not look at The Elect. 3. Do not speak to The Elect. No matter how hard she tries to stay away, The Elect are always around her and it isn't long until she finds out the reason why they keep their friends close and their enemies even closer. She just didn't realize she was the enemy -- until it was too late.

This novel, to put it nicely, was a complete confusing mess, starting out with promise and then derailed so quickly, my head was spinning.
I am not really sure where I will begin.... I will try not to spoil anything but I just have to rant.
Tracey Rooks just won some big lottery and got into this 'elite' school. Dropped off by gramps, she is greeted very poorly by the 'popular kids'. In fact, she is treated like complete sh*t, and brought to tears by the horrible reception. 
Fast forward 1.5 weeks, and the same guy that did this to her not only is looking at her with adoring eyes and would take a bullet for her, but she is utterly and completely head over heels.
Gawd, it was too damn much. I love romance like most gals, and I will even put up my hand and actually ADMIT that I enjoyed the Twilight series, but this was at nauseum!  I needed a bucket for the pukefest that ensued reading this ridiculous lovey dovey dialogue... and not quite understanding how we went from this girl being shredded apart, to her being wooed this way. I know that I, for one, would have lifted my middle finger to this guy over and over and over again. Stockholm syndrome anyone??

The whole entire mystery surrounding her identity was just ridiculous. And frankly there was so much lead up that I thought she was the princess of Monaco or something.. uhmmm I guess in some circles maybe she would be close to the equivalent... but it was just kind of silly, honestly... And then to find out that both Tracey and Nixon were THE BEST of friends as children, just blew my mind. I have friends that I left behind in my home country when I came to Canada as a child, and I can assure you I still remember their names and what they looked like. To be that close to someone and completely not remember them (especially a guy named Nixon, how many of those are around??) a few years later is crazy to me. It was almost like this girl had blocked a part of her life completely out, but with no confirmation of amnesia or why she wouldn't remember not only this guy, but the house she grew up in, and even her last name?

Again, Bullsh*t

The ending of this novel did not make it more satisfying. In fact it just pissed me off more. It was just utterly convenient that a family war would have started off in that fashion. Furthermore, to give this girl the option of making a decision as to whether someone lives or dies felt so farfetched, even in that lifestyle. She had just 'found out' whose granddaughter she was and she's being called on to make those kinds of decisions already?
And just to digress a little. What was so 'elite' about this school? I seriously have no freaking clue.

I was happy to end this book. I wanted to end it sooner but kept hoping that it would turn around somehow, somewhere... Nope! 

That being said, there are many positive reviews out on this book and its series. I clearly do not share those opinions.

I seldom give out 1 stars, but this one was totally and completely not for me. However, there is enough positive feedback that I am clearly in the minority, so if you feel that it's for you, and you are curious about it, give it a go. Just don't say that I didn't warn you!

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Book Cover of the Month

It's baaaaack!  I am really interested to see if any of us pick the same covers this month!  Make sure you weigh in on which cover appeals to you the most in the comment section!

Okay so what I did not bank on when deciding that Book Cover of the Month feature would be a go for 2017 is how many books I would be adding to the 'to read' list as a result... arrrghhhh... I guess there are worse problems to have, right?

Again it was a hard one this month, but I finally settled on the cover of 'Into the Water' by Paula Hawkins. Not only is this an anticipated novel from the author that brought us 'The Girl on the Train', but it is a beautiful eye-catching cover.

Both beautiful and ominous, this cover wins hands down for me. Gorgeous color scheme, great font, and the hint of that faded face in the background. It certainly does reflect the mystery that this novel promises to be, and I am sure the author will again deliver.

Excited to get into this one soon!

I tossed between two covers for a long time.  One of them, funny enough was the one that Lily picked.  It grabbed me, but I kept going back to this one...

This cover completely drew me in.  The colours, the way the face blends into the sky and the water.  I found it stunning and really made me want to pick it up.  On a side note, the title is great!  Haha!  It is always the husband! ;)  Of course once I picked the book I had to take a look at the synopsis and a few of the reviews and it has made its way onto my "to read" list!

Another hard choice for me this month. Like Erin I was having a hard time choosing between two books. Funny enough, Erin's second choice was Lily's book and my second choice was Erin's book! But in the end I settled for 'Saints for All Occasions' by J. Courtney Sullivan.

Now this is not a book I would read, good thing this is about looks and nothing else. This book drew me in with the amazing detail of the houses and skyline. The colour of the sky also grabbed my attention, it really does make this book pop. Unfortunately I wont be adding this one to my reading list, it just doesn't sound like my kind of book. However, this truly is a beautiful book cover.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Legally Yours, by Nicole French

Skylar Ellen Crosby is a typical redhead: blunt, passionate, with a bit of a temper. Okay, so maybe she's a little neurotic too. At the end of her third year at Harvard Law, all Skylar wants is to figure out her next steps: ones that will hopefully include a job, an apartment, and enough money to help her father stop getting into trouble. She simply has no room for romance, especially the kind that might break your heart. But on a dark, snowy night, when she's stranded in the living room of the notorious CEO of Sterling Ventures and one of the best attorneys in Boston, her carefully constructed boundaries are about to be knocked down.

Brandon Sterling never believed in fate. A man of his own making, he firmly credits his successes to hard work. How else could you explain his rise from the poorest of backgrounds in South Boston to becoming one of the most successful entrepreneurs in Boston? Living in luxury in his big house on Beacon Street, it never mattered to him that increasing success meant increased isolation. After all, when you have everything, everyone else always wants something. But when he comes home to find a gorgeous redhead sitting on his windowsill, the idea of love at first sight suddenly seems like the most plausible thing in the world...if only the one person he wants to give his heart to would actually take it.

Together, Skylar and Brandon have the kind of passion few hope to find, but things keep getting in their way. Between school, business, her father's gambling troubles and Brandon's history of personal struggle, will their complicated lives prevent them from making it work together? Or, as they both suspect somewhere deep down, have they finally met their match in each other's stubborn hearts?

One word.  SEXY!  This book is so damn sexy!  I knew when I read the synopsis that it would be a steamy book, but I didn't realize until I started to read the book just how unbelievably sexy it was.  We're talking heart thumping, pulse racing, I'm going to bed early kind of sexy!  This was just one of the reasons why I really enjoyed reading this book.

French nailed the character development, the emotional connection felt with the two main characters was intense.  You got to know Skylar and Brandon bit by bit throughout the entire book.  I found that slowly unraveling the characters drew me in and completely captivated me.  I had a really hard time putting it down when I started to read.

My favourite character is Skylar, without a doubt!  I love that French made her such a strong, independent woman.  She doesn't take shit from anyone!  I loved that she made it very clear to Brandon from the beginning that she works hard for everything she has and doesn't need a man to take care of her.

I loved the humour in this book as well.  There were lines that literally had me laughing out loud. 

I gave this book...

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

We will be doing a Author Spotlight on Nicole French in the upcoming weeks!!  Make sure you follow, because there will also be a giveaway for you!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Let's Chat - Bookish Gifts Part II

It goes without saying that the best gift you can give a book lover simply is... a book!! But I sure know, as a book lover myself, that even though there is no such thing as too many books, the thoughtful gesture of someone finding me something different and special that is book related, does give my heart a twitch of happiness.

Last year, I had a great time preparing a similar post about booking gifts - Let's Chat - Bookish Gifts. - but there are so many great ideas out there that I definitely found many other favorite items to showcase here. If you are looking for a gift for a fellow book lover, or a little something to gift yourself, here are some of my favorite ideas for creating the perfect reading corner for yourself or that special someone.

If you want to check the items more closely, click on the captions and you will be taken to their respective pages.

The Literary Collection Loose Leaf Tea - Etsy

This gift is so fitting for all the Bookluvrs Haven ladies, and it should be a hit with any tea loving book lover in your life. So cozy for the fall time especially, where that warm steaming mug of tea and a warm soft blanket just takes you to the next level in your reading time.  And for those warm days? Make it ice tea! The packaging on these tea bags is what makes this gift so special and different. 

Book lover mug - Etsy

And where to steep that tea you ask? There are no shortage of bookish mugs out there. I have found quite a few different ones at our local book chain stores. But I love this one, because I am that kind of cheeky person, and I have stated this a few times to my dear husband, who chooses all the wrong times to want to talk.

Turquoise throw pillows - Etsy

If you have a special spot where you like to sit and read, this beautiful turquoise pillow certainly is an eye catcher. This would be a gorgeous addition to your special space, a great resting place for that tired elbow from holding up that tablet, kindle or real book!

Vintage Writer’s Feather Quill Fleece Blanket -

If you want to take your book reading nerd-dom to a whole new level, go all the way with a book related fleece blanket! This one from is more my style, with its subtle design and neutral colors. But there are tons of these blankets out there!! Who knew?!


If You Can Read this Please Bring me a Book- Funny socks - Etsy

Easily my favorite of the bunch!! Need to put these on a wish list or something. I would LOOOOOOVE to get a pair of these. 

New York Photography - Etsy

There are some really beautiful prints and photographs of book related places, such as this gorgeous print of a New York corner book store. Put it in a nice frame, and you have another fitting addition to your little reading niche at home.

Off To The Library! Tote Bag - Etsy

Last but not least, something to help you carry those books home from the library.  Now that is a cute tote bag to put in all of your library books in! My only problem would be if it is large enough to accommodate the number of books I usually check out. LOL


There are no shortage of interesting items out there, and only when setting up these posts did I actually realize how much. My wish lists are certainly growing with some of these thoughtful gifts that reflect the love of books.

I hope that I have helped inspire you for your own reading space, or give you some ideas for great gifts for your other book loving friends.

Happy Reading! (And shopping)

This post was linked to the following 2017 Challenge. To join in, or read some other discussion posts, click on the below banner.


Thursday, May 25, 2017

Until you, by penelope douglas

Have you ever been so angry that hitting things felt good? Or so numb that you actually felt high? The past few years have been like that for me. Traveling between fury and indifference with no stops in between.

Some people hate me for it, while others are scared of me. But none of them can hurt me, because I don't care about anything or anyone.

Except Tatum.

I love her so much that I hate her. We used to be friends, but I found out that I couldn't trust her or anyone else.

So I hurt her. I pushed her away.

But I still need her. The sight of her centers me, and I can pool all of my anger into her. Engaging her, challenging her, bullying her...they are my food, my air, and the last part of me that feels anything human.

But she left. She went to France for a year, and came back a different girl.

Now, when I push, she pushes back.

So I think you already know how much I loved the first book of this series, Bully(If you haven't already seen that review, go check it out!), This book I liked just a little bit less. This book is the same story line, just told from Jared's (the main male character) perspective.

I Honestly was hesitant to read this book, it seems a little redundant to read the same cook twice, however Penelope Douglas knocked this out of the park! She did such a amazing job at making sure this was a different book. Although parts were the same, she really took you into the mind of Jared. You dive into getting to know everything about him. Why he bullied Tatum, what he was doing the times he would drive off for days at a time, and what was going through his mind.

I was pleasantly surprised how fresh and exciting this book was! I cant wait to read the other books in this series. I give this book three stars... Well done Penelope Douglas, well done!


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Review - The Decaying Empire (The Vanishing Girl 2), by Laura Thalassa

When eighteen-year-old teleporter Ember Pierce wakes up in a Los Angeles hospital, she remembers only the basics: she’s been trained by the government as a spy, she’s sent on dangerous missions, and her last assignment—the one that landed her in the hospital—was a setup.

Caden Hawthorne has spent the past ten months of his life grieving Ember’s death. So when she shows up in his room like an apparition, he can’t believe his eyes. But this Ember is different. Her hair is longer, her skin is paler, her gaze is haunted. She tells him what he’s already begun to suspect: someone he trusted betrayed her.

Now, uncertain who is friend and who is foe, Ember and Caden face the toughest mission of their lives—to stay together and survive, as they run from danger toward an unknown future.


Last year I had the priviledge of reading the first of this series and reviewed The Vanishing Girl here.  I enjoyed the concept of this novel, but it was a little overshadowed by the budding relationship, sex and slight airheadedness of the main female protagonist. The plot though, was intriguing enough that I grabbed the second in the series.  Glad to say that I actually enjoyed the second book more than the first!

So in keeping this review spoiler free, I will write in generalities about what I really enjoyed about this novel, and hope that is sufficient to get your interest. The book blurb itself is quite a bit of a spoiler... so here goes!

Continuing in great cinematic fashion (BONUS), this book takes off from the major cliffhanger that we were left with from the first book. HATE major cliffhangers, but I had access to the next book immediately, so I didn't have to wait very long to continue the story.

Ember is much more likeable to me this time around. I didn't find her to be so damn clueless as before, which had annoyed me to no end.  Caden tells part of the story from his own POV which is interesting, and I found myself feeling more enamored with the guy than I thought I would be. And of course... I am a sucker for romance!!! And these two have insane chemistry.

I found that this one was action packed from beginning to end, and I tore through it as I usually do with books I can't put down. It does end with another cliffhanger though..... SIGH. So underhanded, I tell ya! I have no choice but to join the ranks of other eager readers impatiently waiting for the next installment. 

An easy 4 stars, cliffhanger and all.

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Relaunch Giveaway Winners

Thank you all for entering, following and showing us your support during our Relaunch Giveaway. Winners have been chosen, and contacted via email to claim their prizes. 

We could not be more thrilled for these ladies and hope they enjoy their new books!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Bully, By Penelope Douglas

My name is Tate. He doesn't call me that, though. He would never refer to me so informally, if he referred to me at all. No, he'll barely even speak to me.

But he still won't leave me alone.

We were best friends once. Then he turned on me and made it his mission to ruin my life. I've been humiliated, shut out, and gossiped about all through high school. His pranks and rumors got more sadistic as time wore on, and I made myself sick trying to stay out of his way. I even went to France for a year, just to avoid him.

But I'm done hiding from him now, and there's no way in hell I'll allow him to ruin my senior year. He might not have changed, but I have. It's time to fight back.

I'm not going to let him bully me anymore.

I was not expecting this book to be so captivating, I found it for free on Kobo and thought I would give it a shot. It starts off with a lot of bullying... A little too much at points. A few extreme situations that should never happen to anyone, I have to say there is a fine line between love and hate. In these situations they are not motivated by love at all. However once you get past the bullying its a book I couldn't put down. I needed to know what was going to happen, would Tate, the main female character, ever trust Jared, the main male character, again? Could Tate really get past the hurt and pain the constant bulling caused? I don't know if I personally could ever get over some of the things Jared did or said.

So much happened in this book, I felt like I read 2 books with the amount of drama and detail shoved into it. Which I really loved, I never got bored or felt like it could've ended sooner. I actually didn't even want it to end. I do have to say I hated Jared and his friends at first but once I continued reading I was really in love with these characters, I went through ever emotion with them, and still wanted to know more about them.

I cant say enough how much I loved this book! Penelope Douglas did an amazing job painting a picture and leaving me wanting more. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this and I cant wait to read the other books to the series. This was a 4 star rating for me, and a definite must read!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Review - The Walled City, by Ryan Graudin

730. That's how many days I've been trapped.
18. That's how many days I have left to find a way out.

DAI, trying to escape a haunting past, traffics drugs for the most ruthless kingpin in the Walled City. But in order to find the key to his freedom, he needs help from someone with the power to be invisible....

JIN hides under the radar, afraid the wild street gangs will discover her biggest secret: Jin passes as a boy to stay safe. Still, every chance she gets, she searches for her lost sister....

MEI YEE has been trapped in a brothel for the past two years, dreaming of getting out while watching the girls who try fail one by one. She's about to give up, when one day she sees an unexpected face at her window.....

In this innovative and adrenaline-fueled novel, they all come together in a desperate attempt to escape a lawless labyrinth before the clock runs out.

Like many other readers, I began reading this one thinking of it as a dystopian novel. However, it did not feel like a dystopian at all. It seemed to be in a category all of its own. Though it did have some similar elements to the genre, it felt like this city could be set in our real world, though secluded away from prying eyes.... a true "city of sin", where no one dares to enter, and no one is able to leave, and everyone outside of it turns a blind eye and pretends it doesn't exist. Oppressors rule and victims hope to live another day or wish for death in some cases; this is the every day of the Walled City. Bonus that this is inspired by a real city as well, which adds an intriguing twist for those curious enough to look into it.

Every character in this book was fleshed out and real. The separate storylines came together nicely and flawlessly. This book delivers as promised; from the first page it is, indeed, adrenaline filled, as our main characters, with different weaknesses and strengths, survive the ruthlessness of the cards that they have been dealt, with hope of escape. 
It was hard not to read this novel in one sitting. The plot was well written in cinematic fashion, and it felt like I was putting a riveting, action filled movie on pause multiple times. Hands down, one of my favorite books of the year! 

It is rare that I give out a 5 star rating, but this one deserves it. If you have not picked this one up yet, I highly recommend you do.

Happy Reading!


Monday, May 8, 2017

Perfect People, by Peter James

John and Naomi Klaesson are grieving the death of their four-year-old son from a rare genetic disorder. They desperately want another child, but when they find out they are both carriers of a rogue gene, they realize the odds of their next child contracting the disease are high. Then they hear about geneticist Doctor Leo Dettore. He has methods that can spare them the heartache of ever losing another child to any disease - even if his methods cost more than they can afford. His clinic is where their nightmare begins. They should have realized that something was wrong when they saw the list. Choices of eye colour, hair, sporting abilities. They can literally design their child. Now it's too late to turn back. Naomi is pregnant, and already something is badly wrong ...

The cover of this book is what drew me to it.  It looks suspenseful, captivating and intriguing.  I then went to Goodreads to check out the synopsis and some of the reviews.  The synopsis completely sucked me in.  This book was bound to be amazing!

The concept of this book is stellar, the execution...not so much.  If the character development was half as good as the storyline itself, James would have had a best seller for sure. 

The characters were well thought out and had the potential to be amazing.  What it did lack was the emotional connection from the characters to the reader.  There was not a single character that I felt the connection with...which as you all know is the number one way to win me over with a book. 

The ending of this book....well it fell flat.  It ended without any excitement.  Sort of like taking a hike and coming to the end of a cliff.  Nobody jumped off the cliff, nothing exciting happened at the cliff....the cliff was just there and the hike ended.

Because the concept of this book was really well thought out and had the potential to be something amazing I gave this book a....

I would recommend this book to someone who enjoys James as an author or anyone who can get past the lack of emotional connection with the characters.  It could be something you would really like.


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