Debbie's World of Books
My book reviews, book news & random rants

Review: Size Matters by Alison Bliss

February 7th, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

 

Publication date: November 29, 2016

Publisher: Forever

Rating: ★★★★☆

About the Book:

The rules of (fake) engagement . . .
Leah Martin has spent her life trying to avoid temptation. But she’s sick of low-fat snacks, counting calories, and her hyper-critical mom. Fortunately, her popular new bakery keeps her good and distracted. But there aren’t enough éclairs in the world to distract Leah from the hotness that is Sam Cooper – or the fact that he just told her mother that they’re engaged . . . which is a big, fat lie.

Sam sometime speaks before he thinks. So what started out as defending Leah’s date-ability to her judgmental mother soon turned into having a fiancee! Now the plan is to keep up the fake engagement, stay “just friends,” and make Leah’s family loathe him enough to just call the whole thing off . But Sam has an insatiable sweet tooth, not only for Leah’s decadent desserts but her decadent curves. Her full lips. Her bright green eyes. Yep, things aren’t going quite according to plan. Now Sam has to convince Leah that he’s for real . . . before their little lie turns into one big, sweet disaster.

My Thoughts:

Being a big girl myself the fact that this book had a plus sized heroine on the cover immediately caught my eye. When I saw it go on sale on Amazon I decided to give it a shot since the reviews were so positive.

I have mixed feelings about this book because it really was such a fun read and it did make me laugh a lot. That said the heroine really did start to get on my nerves. I have low self esteem due to always having been “the fat girl” but I thought a lot of Leah’s reaction were way overboard. Even if you add in the fact that her mother is always criticizing her and her ex was a douche she took totally innocent comments and blew them way out of proportion. And the fact that it wasn’t just once but numerous times really grated on me. Yes I would have self doubt but I wouldn’t always be so aggressive in assuming the worst about everyone and every word that came out of their mouth.

Other than that though I really enjoyed reading the book and I am really excited to read Valerie’s book. She sounds like she’s plus sized but embraces her great qualities too which I think will make a great heroine. That combined with Alison Bliss’s great sense of humor that comes across in her writing I think will make an amazing, must read romance.

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Posted in 4 Star Books, Books, Contemporary, Romance | No Comments »

Review: The Seventh Plague by James Rollins

February 2nd, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

 

Publication date: December 13, 2016

Publisher: William Morrow

Series: Sigma Force #12

Rating: ★★★☆☆

About the Book:

If the biblical plagues of Egypt truly happened–could they happen again–on a global scale?

Two years after vanishing into the Sudanese desert, the leader of a British archeological expedition, Professor Harold McCabe, comes stumbling out of the sands, frantic and delirious, but he dies before he can tell his story. The mystery deepens when an autopsy uncovers a bizarre corruption: someone had begun to mummify the professor’s body–while he was still alive.

His strange remains are returned to London for further study, when alarming news arrives from Egypt. The medical team who had performed the man’s autopsy has fallen ill with an unknown disease, one that is quickly spreading throughout Cairo. Fearing the worst, a colleague of the professor reaches out to a longtime friend: Painter Crowe, the director of Sigma Force. The call is urgent, for Professor McCabe had vanished into the desert while searching for proof of the ten plagues of Moses. As the pandemic grows, a disturbing question arises.

Are those plagues starting again?

Before Director Crowe can investigate, a mysterious group of assassins leaves behind a fiery wake of destruction and death, erasing all evidence. With the professor’s body incinerated, his home firebombed, Sigma Force must turn to the archaeologist’s only daughter, Jane McCabe, for help. While sifting through what’s left of her father’s work, she discovers a puzzling connection, tying the current threat to a shocking historical mystery, one involving the travels of Mark Twain, the genius of Nikola Tesla, and the adventures of famous explorer, Henry Morgan Stanley.

To unravel a secret going back millennia, Director Crowe and Commander Grayson Pierce will be thrust to opposite sides of the globe. One will search for the truth, traveling from the plague-ridden streets of Cairo to a vast ancient tomb buried under the burning sands of the Sudan; the other will struggle to stop a mad genius locked within a remote Arctic engineering complex, risking the lives of all those he holds dear.

As the global crisis grows ever larger, Sigma Force will confront a threat born of the ancient past and made real by the latest science–a danger that will unleash a cascading series of plagues, culminating in a scourge that could kill all of the world’s children . . . decimating mankind forever.

My Thoughts:

When people ask who are my favorite authors, James Rollins tops my list so I am shocked that I’ve given 3 stars to two of his books in a row (I wasn’t a fan of Warhawk either). It really saddens me to do so but The Seventh Plague never really drew me in.

The story concept sounded fascinating and I love the entire Sigma Force but something just seemed to be missing from this one. I felt we didn’t get into the heads of the characters as much this time around which was one of my favorite things about Rollins past books. I loved Gray and Seichan from the start and even Kowalski really grew on me in The Bone Labyrinth so I was shocked not to enjoy them more in this story. It seemed like we were going to dive deeper into Seichan’s characters as she starts delving into the idea that she doesn’t really fit anywhere but that is never fully explored. I suppose it might be addressed in future books. I did like that Kat was finally out in the field again. It was a little frustrating that she had been relegated to a behind the desk job playing the wife and mother role that doesn’t really utilize her amazing intellect and ability in the field. I wish that had also played a larger part in the book.

The storyline also never really picked up for me. I didn’t become invested in it as I have the past mysteries that were the basis of past books. I did love Crash & Burn that came out right before The Seventh Plague so I’m hoping Rollins’ next book is more along that style.

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Valentine’s Day Giveaway!

February 1st, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

We’re spreading some Valentine’s Day love with a giveaway full of chocolate, books, and pretty things! 

To enter fill out the Rafflecopter then hit the comments and tell us about something YOU love. Your favorite author, book, or blog. Tell us about your true love, your kids, your best friend or your pets. Anything you love. We want to hear about what makes your heart full or just makes you smile.

Enter the Giveaway!

Posted in Books, Giveaways | 1 Comment »

Review: It Started With a Kiss by Marina Adair

January 31st, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

It Started With a Kiss by Marina Adair

Source: Received for review

Publication date: January 31, 2017

Publisher: Montlake

Rating: ★★★★★

About the Book

With a kidney transplant behind her, Avery Adams is determined to channel her inner adventurer and explore everything life has to offer. Only problem is, the closest she’s ever come to a real-life adventure was sixth-grade science camp. So to seize the summer in her rustic Sierra Nevada town, she takes a job as a guide at the local adventure lodge. But Avery doesn’t realize her biggest challenge will register at six-plus feet of rugged good looks and alpha-male charm.

As a member of the Sequoia Elite Mountain Rescue team, Tyson Donovan has made a life out of cheating death and rescuing weekend warriors from the treacherous terrain. “The world is my home” is more than just a motto; it’s what scares off women who would otherwise try to tie him down. When his dad’s health lands the family’s adventure lodge in serious danger of going up in flames, he moves home—and quickly remembers why he left. Until he meets Avery, the irresistible new guide who makes him want to stay.

Tyson gives the inexperienced Avery a lesson in romance that her books could never teach her. And with her undeniable spirit for life, Avery shows Tyson the healing power of love. But with one misstep, everything comes crashing down, and they’ll both have to take the biggest leap of all—into the kind of adventure that lasts a lifetime.

My Thoughts

I feel like I’m a broken record when it comes to reviewing Marina Adair’s books but they are just that good. I will warn you that this book brought tears to my eyes but it was so good!

I loved both Ty and Avery’s characters from the very start. Both characters have backgrounds that makes your heart break for them and have you rooting for them to get their happily ever after. It’s not smooth sailing but so satisfying watching them each overcome the stumbling blocks in their life.

Their romance was so touching to watch as it develops and was so satisfying to finish. You can’t go wrong with Marina Adair. She’s definitely an auto-buy author for me.

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Posted in 5 Star Books, Books, Romance | No Comments »

Review: Under Pressure by Lori Foster

January 26th, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

Under Pressure by Lori Foster

Source: Received for review

Publication date: January 24, 2017

Publisher: HQN Books

Series: Body Armor #1

Rating: ★★★☆☆

About the Book:

He can protect anything except his heart

Leese Phelps’s road hasn’t been an easy one, but it’s brought him to the perfect job — working for the elite Body Armor security agency. And what his newest assignment lacks in size, she makes up for in fire and backbone. But being drawn to Catalina Nicholson is a dangerous complication, especially since it could be the very man who hired Leese who’s threatening her.

What Catalina knows could get her killed. But who’d believe the sordid truth about her powerful stepfather? Beyond Leese’s ripped body and brooding gaze is a man of impeccable honour. He’s the last person she expects to trust — and the first who’s ever made her feel safe. And he’s the only one who can help her expose a deadly secret, if they can just stay alive long enough…

My Thoughts

I loved almost every Lori Foster book I’ve read and I was curious to see what Leese’s story would end up being. Sadly I’ve fallen into the minority of not enjoying this book as much as her other series. It’s possible this is because I have read the Ultimate series (which this is a spin off of) and it seemed such a jarring change since we never see the transition Leese made from MMA to being a body guard. At the same time it makes reference to this just being a year later so I found some of it hard to believe that Leese was as good of a body guard as he’s made out to be after so little time. He demonstrates so many skills that I had my doubts he could have excelled at so quickly (I could be wrong of course but it was just the feeling I got).

I also wasn’t too enamored over Cat. I felt like it came up way too much over how she was lying to everyone, keeping secrets hidden from Leese, etc. After awhile I was like we get it, you’re lying to him and you have no plans of telling him any time soon, please stop mentioning it. She eventually grew on me enough to care what happened to her but I never fell for her like I have previous heroines.

My favorite characters actually ended up being Sahara and her assistant. I can’t wait to hear more about her story and find out what happened to her brother. It’s only touched upon in this book but I assume it will come later in the series.

The story itself was interesting and kept you guessing as to what would happen next which I always enjoy in a story. All in all I would say Lori Foster is always worth reading but I’m hoping to enjoy the next book more so.

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Posted in 3 Star Books, Books, Contemporary, Romance | No Comments »

Review: Accidentally on Purpose by Jill Shalvis

January 23rd, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

Accidentally on Purpose by Jill Shalvis

Publication date: January 24, 2017

Publisher: Avon Books

Series: Heartbreaker Bay #3

Rating: ★★★★★

About the Book:

 There’s no such thing as a little in love…

Elle Wheaten’s priorities: friends, career, and kick-ass shoes. Then there’s the muscular wall of stubbornness that’s security expert Archer Hunt—who comes before everything else. No point in telling Mr. “Feels-Free Zone” that, though. Elle will just see other men until she gets over Archer . . . which should only take a lifetime . . .

There’s no such thing as a little in lust…

Archer’s wanted the best for Elle ever since he sacrificed his law-enforcement career to save her. But now that she’s earned happiness and success, Archer just wants Elle 24/7. Their chemistry could start the next San Francisco Earthquake, and Archer doesn’t want to be responsible for the damage. The alternative? Watch her go out with guys who aren’t him . . .

There is such a thing as…

As far as Archer’s concerned, nobody is good enough for Elle. But when he sets out to prove it by sabotaging her dates, she gets mad—and things get hot as hell. Now Archer has a new mission: prove to Elle that her perfect man has been here all along…

My Thoughts

When I read The Trouble with Mistletoe I mentioned that the supporting cast blew me away and that was definitely true about Elle and Archer. I couldn’t wait to read their story and it definitely did not disappoint.

Both characters were scrappy, had their flaws and had you falling in love with them. The chemistry was sizzling and I loved their sparring as they tried to fight their attraction. I loved Elle’s character because she’s strong and independent but not stupidly independent. She makes her own choices but doesn’t do stupid things just to prove she is independent. Archer is just sex on two legs and while I would have shared Elle’s frustration with Archer’s meddling in her life, I still couldn’t resist him. Then you toss in Joe and Spence who had me cracking up constantly and this was a book I fell in love with.

I am dying to read Spence’s story. Definitely glad this one blew me out of the water after The Trouble with Mistletoe being just meh for me.

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Posted in 5 Star Books, Books, Romance | No Comments »

Review: Taking Care of the Target by Cindi Madsen

January 23rd, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

Taking Care of the Target by Cindi Madsen

Source: Received for review

Publication date: January 23, 2017

Rating: ★★★★½

About the book:

Vince DaMarco always liked Cassie, the shy waitress who works at the restaurant that serves as a front for his mob boss uncle. Unfortunately, she witnesses a back alley hit, and while fleeing, she’s struck by a truck. Now she’s at the top of the hit list. Desperate to stop anyone who’d draw out Cassie’s death, Vince volunteers to take care of it.

Cassie Dalton has no recollection of her accident, but she’s told she’s lucky to be alive. A few years are missing from her memory, and the unsettling feeling that something isn’t right—along with the creepy sensation that she’s being watched—won’t go away.

Vince shows up right when Cassie needs him most. In a world of confusion, the rugged stranger is the one thing that makes sense. But little does she know, she’s found refuge in the arms of the very man who’s been sent to kill her.

My Thoughts

I am a huge fan of Cindi Madsen’s sweet romances and new adult romances so when I saw she was releasing a romantic suspense I jumped at the chance to review it.  She certainly did not disappoint and I fell in love with both Vince and Cassie. The chemistry between the two was so thick that you could feel it and watching the two dance around each other until they came together was great to see. The story line was interesting and I really enjoyed the supporting characters as well including Vince’s brother.  Cindi Madsen just has a way of writing a story that sucks you in and takes you on a great ride. Definitely recommend Taking Care of the Target if you love a great romance with a dose of suspense tossed in.

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Giveaway

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Posted in 4 Star Books, 5 Star Books, Books, Romance, Thriller/Suspense | No Comments »

Review: The Magnolia Story by Chip & Joanna Gaines

January 18th, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

Source: Purchased from Amazon

Publication date: October 18, 2016

Rating: ★★★★★

About the book

Are you ready to see your fixer upper?

These famous words are now synonymous with the dynamic husband-and-wife team Chip and Joanna Gaines, stars of HGTV’s Fixer Upper. As this question fills the airwaves with anticipation, their legions of fans continue to multiply and ask a different series of questions, like—Who are these people?What’s the secret to their success? And is Chip actually that funny in real life? By renovating homes in Waco, Texas, and changing lives in such a winsome and engaging way, Chip and Joanna have become more than just the stars of Fixer Upper, they have become America’s new best friends.

The Magnolia Story is the first book from Chip and Joanna, offering their fans a detailed look at their life together. From the very first renovation project they ever tackled together, to the project that nearly cost them everything; from the childhood memories that shaped them, to the twists and turns that led them to the life they share on the farm today.

They both attended Baylor University in Waco. However, their paths did not cross until Chip checked his car into the local Firestone tire shop where Joanna worked behind the counter. Even back then Chip was a serial entrepreneur who, among other things, ran a lawn care company, sold fireworks, and flipped houses. Soon they were married and living in their first fixer upper. Four children and countless renovations later, Joanna garners the attention of a television producer who notices her work on a blog one day.

My Thoughts

I only watch Fixer Upper off and on but when I do I love watching the interaction between Chip and Joanna. They are such a great couple on TV and I love how they always put their family first so I was eager to read more about their relationship and how they got started.

This was a quick and fun read that I finished in one setting. The story reads just how the couple behaves on TV. It’s funny, loving and inspiring. The faith Joanna showed in God when making life choices was both inspiring and nerve wracking. It’s something I always feel I need to work on as I always feel like I need a plan in place before making any big changes in my life. I also found it hilarious and incredible that they made it past the first date with Chip showing up so late and then all of his antics over the years.

If you love the show or just want to see more of how this couple found their success I highly suggest this read. Truly a blast to read.

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Posted in 5 Star Books, Books, Contemporary | No Comments »

Release Day for The Rule Maker by Jennifer Blackwood + Giveaway!

January 16th, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

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Release Date: January 16, 2017

Publisher: Entangled Embrace

About the book:

Ten Steps to Surviving a New Job:

1. Don’t sleep with the client. It’ll get you fired. (Sounds easy enough.)

2. Don’t blink when new client turns out to be former one-night stand.

3. Don’t call same client a jerk for never texting you back.

4. Don’t believe client when he says he really, really wanted to call.

5. Remember, the client is always right—so you can’t junk punch him when he demands new design after new design.

6. Ignore accelerated heartbeat every time sexy client walks into room.

7. Definitely ignore client’s large hands. They just mean he wears big gloves.

8. Don’t let client’s charm wear you down. Be strong.

9. Whatever you do, don’t fall for the client. You’ll lose more than your job—maybe even your heart.

10. If all else fails, see rule number one again.

Goodreads

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Giveaway

$50 Sephora Gift Card

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About the Author

Jennifer Blackwood is an English teacher and contemporary romance author. She lives in Oregon with her husband, son, and poorly behaved black lab puppy. When she isn’t writing or teaching, she’s binging on Veronica Mars episodes and white cheddar popcorn.

 Connect with Jennifer

NewsletterFacebook Reader Group | Twitter | Amazon Author Page

 

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Posted in Blog Tour, Books, New Adult | No Comments »

New Review: Frost Blood by Elly Blake

January 10th, 2017 by Debbie's World of Books

Frost Blood by Elly Blake

Source: Netgalley

Publication date: January 10, 2017

Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers

Rating: ★★★½☆

About the book

Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a fireblood who must hide her powers of heat and flame from the cruel frostblood ruling class that wants to destroy all that are left of her kind. So when her mother is killed for protecting her and rebel frostbloods demand her help to kill their rampaging king, she agrees. But Ruby’s powers are unpredictable, and she’s not sure she’s willing to let the rebels and an infuriating (yet irresistible) young man called Arcus use her as their weapon.

All she wants is revenge, but before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to take part in the king’s tournaments that pit fireblood prisoners against frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her and from the icy young man she has come to love.

Fast-paced and compelling, Frostblood is the first in a page-turning new young adult three-book series about a world where flame and ice are mortal enemies—but together create a power that could change everything.

My Thoughts

I hadn’t heard anything about this book before but when I saw it in an email from Netgalley it sounded intriguing so I decided to give it a try. I actually ended up enjoying it more than I expected being it was from a new to me author.

Ruby was kind of a brat to begin with and the story took awhile to take off but both Ruby and the story started to grow on me. I ended up reading the book in one sitting and Arcus and some of the supporting characters were what really made the book for me. I also loved the world building that took place in this book and am hoping for more in the coming books.

This was a promising start to a new series and I’m hoping to see more growth in Ruby’s character.

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Posted in 3 Star Books, 4 Star Books, Books, Young Adult | No Comments »

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