Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Hard As It Gets Review

Hard As It Gets
By Laura Kaye
Adult Contemporary Romance

Goodreads Summary:
Trouble just walked into Nicholas Rixey's tattoo parlor. Becca Merritt is warm, sexy, wholesome--pure temptation to a very jaded Nick. He's left his military life behind to become co-owner of Hard Ink Tattoo, but Becca is his ex-commander's daughter. Loyalty won't let him turn her away. Lust has plenty to do with it too.

With her brother presumed kidnapped, Becca needs Nick. She just wasn't expecting to want him so much. As their investigation turns into all-out war with an organized crime ring, only Nick can protect her. And only Becca can heal the scars no one else sees.

Desire is the easy part. Love is as hard as it gets. Good thing Nick is always up for a challenge..

Gabrielle's 4.5 Star Review:
The book starts out with Becca Merritt, who goes to a tattoo parlor, in a desperate search for a man her brother told her to find in a secret code because he was kidnapped. First she meets, Jeremy Rixey. He is funny and down to earth, a breath of fresh air... But he soon realizes Becca is looking for the other Rixey brother, Nick. Enter Nick. He is brooding, doesn't give a crap about her problem, and is a complete a** hole. But after he turns her away, guilt eats away at him and he searches for her to make sure she is okay. Then crap hits the fan and they're thrown together because without him, she would be dead or kidnapped within five minutes.

A war rages inside Nick because she is the daughter of the man who betrayed him (who died) and his fellow soldiers but he soon realizes she is nothing like her old man. He calls in his former special forces team - the remaining live men - and tries to convince them that Charlie, Becca's brother's, kidnapping was part of why their commander betrayed them. Eventually, each member of the team agrees and they throw together a plan, without cops because the gang has some of them on their payroll, and attempts to save Charlie.
As time goes on, Nick and Becca grow a bond between the two of them. But Becca learns that Nick kept secrets from her, big ones... And Nick has to learn that she isn't her father and that she truly cares about him and his men.

First, I'll start off with saying how I like how he turns her away because if he didn't then it wouldn't make any sense because he hates her father with a passion and it only makes sense his hatred would be shot at her, too. But then he very quickly changes his mind and pretty much stalks her... But his stalking does save her from getting hurt. She somehow trusts him too quickly, in my opinion at least, and his men.
The heat between Becca and Nick is undeniable but it should have been the last thing on their minds. But I do think their chemistry is off the charts. Nick is stubborn and confused but Becca is patient with him, knowing there must be a reason for his mood swings.

When the rest of his team comes in, I love the tension between them. Each of them, other than Marz, holds a grudge against Nick because he disappeared without checking in on his men. (Nick was the second in command.) Shane, Nick's best friend, is the one who is the angriest and he has a reason to be. He called Nick numerous times, emailed, but Nick ignored every message. But they are a team and when one of them calls... They all come running to aid them. I love their sense of loyalty.

Becca quickly shows the men that she ISN'T her father and each of them start to realize it. By the end of the book, every man 100% realizes she is her own person and she personally earned all of their trust. It is a great book for romance, loyalty, friendship. I read it in two sittings because I couldn't put it down. None of the issues I listed above dettered me from wanting more and more and more. I bought the second book before I even finished the first so I could read it ASAP.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Perfect Chemistry Review

Perfect Chemistry
By Simone Elkeles
YA Contemporary Romance

Simone went to my little sister's school because I was a winner of her giveaway. She was one of the nicest and funniest authors that I have ever met, and I've met quite a few authors.
Simone and her books change lives.

Author's Summary: 
A modern tale of star-crossed lovers with a fresh urban twist. 
At Fairfield High School, on the outskirts of Chicago , everyone knows that south-siders mixing with north-siders can be explosive.  So when Brittany Ellis and Alejandro “Alex” Fuentes are forced to be lab partners in chemistry class, this human experiment leads to unexpected revelations – that Brittany ’s flawless reputation is a cover for her troubled home life, that Alex’s bad-boy persona  hides his desire to break free from gang ties, and that when they’re together, life somehow makes more sense.  Breaking through the stereotypes and expectations that threaten to keep Brittany and Alex apart, Perfect Chemistry takes readers to both sides of the tracks in a passionate love story about looking beneath the surface.

Gabrielle's Review:
Brittany Ellis is the most popular, perfect girl at Fairfield High school. She has to project the image that she and her family is perfect but she and her entire family has plenty of imperfections. Her mother is mean, her father is never mentally present whenever he is home, and her sister has a mental slowness. So Brittany has to pretend to be the most perfect girl in town.
Alex Fuentes is the most thoughtful and loving gang member you will ever meet. He pretends to be tough and mean but deep down he has a huge heart. He's in Latino Blood to keep his family safe, and younger brothers away from gangs. He never did anything for himself.
Throw them together in chemistry and force them to become partners, this happens:

"'Miss Ellis?" Mrs. Peterson says. 'It's your turn. Introduce Alex to the class.'
'This is Alejandro Fuentes. When he wasn't hanging out on street corners and harassing innocent people this summer, he toured the inside of jails around the city, if you know what I mean. His secret desire is to go to college and become a chemistry teacher, like you, Mrs. Peterson.'
Brittany flashes me a triumphant smile, thinking she's won this round. Guess again, gringa.
'This is Brittany Ellis,' I sat, all eyes now focused on me. 'This summer she went to the mall, bought new clothes so she could expand her wardrobe, and spent her daddy's money on plastic surgery to enhance her, ahem, assets. Her secret desire is to date a Mexicano before she graduates.'
Game on..."

Slowly, the two of them realize there is more depth to the both of them than they allow anyone to see, and that they are more alike than anyone else they know. Brittany brings out the goodness in Alex and together they try to fight the odds even though they are from different sides of the tracks.
Alex takes a bet that he could get into Brittany's pants before Halloween. That is what starts his pursuit to the perfect barbie who he thought was as shallow as a kiddie pool. He didn't want ot lose Julio, his motorcycle he built by himself. They then begin to break down each other's walls and experience new things.
Simone brings to life two wonderful characters. This book teaches people to not judge a person based on rumors and appearance. It was beautiful to watch two unlikely people fall head over heals for each other. I felt their love as if it were my own.
I recommend this book to anyone who loves YA contemporary, forbidden love stories, or books that bring awareness about youth gang members and trying to find where you belong.