Sunday, August 29, 2021

Mini Reviews: Bromance #1 and #2


After listening to two heavy books, I needed a lighter read. I found the the Bromance Book Club series by Lyssa Kay Adams and I'm enjoying it so far. I think I'll listen to the whole series. Here are the first two books:

Book #1: The Bromance Book Club

I needed to read something light and this book was perfect! The Bromance Book Club had a very cute concept: a group of men get together to read romance books in order to understand the women in their lives. In this first book of the series, Gavin is having marital problems. After an argument, his wife, Thea, kicked him out of the house and asked him for a divorce. Gavin was devastated and turned to alcohol. Gavin had a lot of self esteem issues and so did his wife, which made winning her back difficult for Gavin. Fortunately, Gavin had his Bromance Book Club guys. It was very cute to listen to how the men in the book club tried to give Gavin tips by analyzing romance books. I really enjoyed listening to their bromance; their relationship with each other was cute. It's great to see strong men being vulnerable and being supportive of one another. It was also fun to listen how the story jumped between Gavin's and the Count's, the character from the book Gavin was reading. This was a highly enjoyable read! I rate it: 4 stars. 

Monday, August 23, 2021

Review: Fear Street Part One- 1994


A Netflix Original Film

"A circle of teenage friends accidentally encounter the ancient evil responsible for a series of brutal murders that have plagued their town for over 300 years. Welcome to Shadyside." 
~IMDB's description

Directed by Leigh Janiak
Written by R.L. Stine, Kyle Killen, & Phil Graziadei
Starring: Kiana Madeira, Olivia Scott Welch, Benjamin Flores Jr, etc...

My Thoughts: I was very excited when I saw the Fear Street movie trilogy pop up while browsing on Netflix. I had no idea that R.L. Stine's books were being turned into movies. As weird as this may sound, the Fear Street books hold a special place in my heart. Why? Let me explain.

Saturday, August 21, 2021

Review: Bunny

By Mona Awad

Samantha Heather Mackey couldn't be more of an outsider in her small, highly selective MFA program at New England's Warren University. A scholarship student who prefers the company of her dark imagination to that of most people, she is utterly repelled by the rest of her fiction writing cohort--a clique of unbearably twee rich girls who call each other "Bunny," and are often found entangled in a group hug so tight they become one.

But everything changes when Samantha receives an invitation to the Bunnies' fabled "Smut Salon," and finds herself inexplicably drawn to their front door--ditching her only friend, Ava, a caustic art school dropout, in the process. As Samantha plunges deeper and deeper into the sinister yet saccharine world of the Bunny cult and starts to take part in their ritualistic off-campus "Workshop" where they magically conjure their monstrous creations, the edges of reality begin to blur, and her friendships with Ava and the Bunnies are brought into deadly collision.

A spellbinding, down-the-rabbit-hole tale of loneliness and belonging, creativity and agency, and friendship and desire, Bunny is a dazzlingly original second book.

Friday, August 20, 2021

Bookstore Romance Day 2021


It's that time of year again! This weekend is Bookstore Romance Day!!!! It's "designed to give independent bookstores an opportunity to celebrate Romance fiction and to strengthen the relationships between bookstores and the Romance community." Bookstore Romance Day is celebrated the third Saturday in August. 

I participated in the virtual discussions last year and it was so much fun! I learned about new romance authors, was introduced to awesome romance books, and learned about various independent bookstores. It's going to be a fun weekend!

Here are just some of the events happening:

Saturday, August 14, 2021

Audiobook Review: Sanctuary

By Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher

Narrated by Paola Mendoza

Duration: 7 hours 52 minutes

It's 2032, and in this near-future America, all citizens are chipped and everyone is tracked - from buses to grocery stores. It's almost impossible to survive as an undocumented immigrant, but that's exactly what 16-year-old Vali is doing.

She and her family have carved out a stable, happy life in small-town Vermont, but when Vali's mother's counterfeit chip starts malfunctioning and the Deportation Forces raid their town, they are forced to flee. Now on the run, Vali and her family are desperately trying to make it to her Tía Luna's in California, a sanctuary state that is currently being walled off from the rest of the country.

But when Vali's mother is detained before their journey even really begins, Vali must carry on with her younger brother across the country to make it to safety before it's too late.

Gripping and urgent, coauthors Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher have crafted a narrative that is as haunting as it is hopeful in envisioning a future where everyone can find sanctuary.

Saturday, August 7, 2021

Review: The Viscount Who Loved Me

 By Julia Quinn

*TBR book

1814 promises to be another eventful season, but not, this author believes, for Anthony Bridgerton, London's most elusive bachelor, who has shown no indication that he plans to marry.

And in truth, why should he? When it comes to playing the consummate rake, nobody does it better...

—Lady Whistledown's Society Papers, April 1814

But this time, the gossip columnists have it wrong. Anthony Bridgerton hasn't just decided to marry—he's even chosen a wife! The only obstacle is his intended's older sister, Kate Sheffield—the most meddlesome woman ever to grace a London ballroom. The spirited schemer is driving Anthony mad with her determination to stop the betrothal, but when he closes his eyes at night, Kate is the woman haunting his increasingly erotic dreams...

Contrary to popular belief, Kate is quite sure that reformed rakes do not make the best husbands—and Anthony Bridgerton is the most wicked rogue of them all. Kate is determined to protect her sister—but she fears her own heart is vulnerable. And when Anthony's lips touch hers, she's suddenly afraid she might not be able to resist the reprehensible rake herself.

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Audiobook: A Pho Love Story

By Loan Le

Narrated by Ryan Do and Vyvy Nguyen

Duration: 9 hours and 53 mins

If Bao Nguyen had to describe himself, he’d say he was a rock. Steady and strong, but not particularly interesting. His grades are average, his social status unremarkable. He works at his parents’ pho restaurant, and even there, he is his parents’ fifth favorite employee. Not ideal.

If Linh Mai had to describe herself, she’d say she was a firecracker. Stable when unlit, but full of potential for joy and fire. She loves art and dreams pursuing a career in it. The only problem? Her parents rely on her in ways they’re not willing to admit, including working practically full-time at her family’s pho restaurant.

For years, the Mais and the Nguyens have been at odds, having owned competing, neighboring pho restaurants. Bao and Linh, who’ve avoided each other for most of their lives, both suspect that the feud stems from feelings much deeper than friendly competition.

But then a chance encounter brings Linh and Bao in the same vicinity despite their best efforts and sparks fly, leading them both to wonder what took so long for them to connect. But then, of course, they immediately remember.

Can Linh and Bao find love in the midst of feuding families and complicated histories?

Monday, August 2, 2021

Literary & Book Podcasts #2

At the start of the COVID-19 Pandemic, I found myself being drawn to podcasts. I listened from paranormal stories, to unsolved murders, to self-help podcasts. Though many of these podcasts were great, I found myself enjoying the book related ones the most. So I decided that every so often, I would share with you a literary and book podcast that I highly enjoy. 

Today's featured Podcast:

Heaving Bosoms

Sunday, August 1, 2021

Audiobook: We Are Not From Here

By Jenny Torres Sanchez 

Narrated by Marisa Blake 

Duration: 9 hours 31 minutes

A ripped-from-the-headlines novel of desperation, escape, and survival across the U.S.-Mexico border.

Pulga, Chico, and Pequeña have no false illusions about the town they've grown up in and the dangers that surround them. Though their families--both biological and found--create a warm community for them, threats lurk around every corner. And when those threats become all too real, the three teens know they have no choice but to run: for the border, for the hope of freedom, and for their very lives.

Crossing from Guatemala through Mexico with their eyes on the U.S. border, they follow the route of La Bestia, a system of trains that promise the hope of freedom--if they are lucky enough to survive the harrowing journey. With nothing but the bags on their backs and the desperation that courses through their very veins, Pulga, Chico, and Pequeña know that there's no turning back, dangerous though the road ahead might be.

In this story inspired by real--and current--events, the plight at our southern border is brought to life.