Friday, August 14, 2020

Melinda's Mini Reviews for August

Melinda has a few mini reviews for you today, from 3 to 4 Stars!

Things Hoped For
by Chencia Higgins
Publisher: EKOL Media (July 28, 2020)
Series: The Vow Series, 4
Genre: Contemporary Romance (Queer, F/F)

Can two women who only want to be loved, find a home in each other when the world around them is moving too fast for them to settle down?

Growing up in an intolerant town, Latrisha Martin was used to shrinking the most important parts of herself. She hid her loneliness within a busy life and kept the yearning in her heart tucked away from those closest to her. Just as the fa├žade became too heavy to maintain, Trisha received wise words from a strange woman that helped redirect her life's journey. On a whim, she relocates to Houston, and while adjusting to a new normal, she finds that those desires she'd once hidden begin to manifest in ways she never imagined.

With her star attached to a rocket ship, Xenobia Cooper was quickly transforming from a locally known talent into a name known in households across the nation. Viewed as an overnight success to many, the only thing that the veteran of the Houston underground music scene hadn't prepared for was living a life without someone to come home to at the end of the day. A reckless tweet sent out in the middle of the night brings an influx of women with stars in their eyes, but they all lack the key component that Xeno is looking for. A chance encounter after her largest show to date and she's convinced that those things she'd hoped for are just within her grasp.

The Vow Series
To Buy a Vow - Book 1
To Build a Vow - Book 2
To Break a Vow - Book 3
Things Hoped For - Book 4

Where to Buy*:
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Add it on Goodreads! | Find the Series

Melinda's Review:

I really enjoyed this one - it was low angst which is what I needed right now. Trisha and Xeno are in different places in their lives professionally but that didn't seem to hinder their relationship at all. I liked seeing how Xeno grappled with potential musical fame and enjoyed Trisha's friend group and adjusting to a new city. I haven't read the other books in this series, I just preordered this one based on the cover but now I'm going to go back and read the others since this one was so good and the third of this author's that I've enjoyed.


Beach Read
by Emily Henry
Publisher: Berkley (May 19, 2020)
Genre: Contemporary Romance (M/F)

A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge that may just upend everything they believe about happily ever afters.

Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.

They're polar opposites.

In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they're living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer's block.

Until, one hazy evening, one thing leads to another and they strike a deal designed to force them out of their creative ruts: Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. She'll take him on field trips worthy of any rom-com montage, and he'll take her to interview surviving members of a backwoods death cult (obviously). Everyone will finish a book and no one will fall in love. Really.

Where to Buy*:
More Info:
Author's Site 
Add it on Goodreads! | Find the Series

Melinda's Review:

I had CWs going into this and I'm so so glad I did. I thought this was so well written and really lovely about grief and loss and moving on. But I can never get over the title and cover not conveying any of the insides which includes: death, cancer, cheating, divorce, child abuse,'s not even about a cartoon cover, just about the tone of the cover and the title combo that the marketing does such a horrible disservice here to the reader AND the author both. I listened to this book and Julia Whelan did a wonderful job with the narration like always. I did enjoy this book...but marketing expectation completely screwed me over.


Just Like That
by Cole McCade
Publisher: Carina Adores (June 30, 2020)
Series: Albin Academy, 1
Genre: Contemporary Romance (Queer, M/M)

Carina Adores is home to highly romantic contemporary love stories featuring beloved romance tropes, where LGBTQ+ characters find their happily-ever-afters.

Summer Hemlock never meant to come back to Omen, Massachusetts.

But with his mother in need of help, Summer has no choice but to return to his hometown, take up a teaching residency at the Albin Academy boarding school—and work directly under the man who made his teenage years miserable.

Professor Fox Iseya.

Forbidding, aloof, commanding: psychology instructor Iseya is a cipher who’s always fascinated and intimidated shy, anxious Summer. But that fascination turns into something more when the older man challenges Summer to be brave. What starts as a daily game to reward Summer with a kiss for every obstacle overcome turns passionate, and a professional relationship turns quickly personal.

Yet Iseya’s walls of grief may be too high for someone like Summer to climb…until Summer’s infectious warmth shows Fox everything he’s been missing in life.

Now both men must be brave enough to trust each other, to take that leap.

To find the love they’ve always needed…

Just like that.

In Just Like That, critically acclaimed author Cole McCade introduces us to Albin Academy: a private boys’ school where some of the world’s richest families send their problem children to learn discipline and maturity, out of the public eye.

This book is approximately 65,000 words

One-click with confidence. This title is part of the Carina Press Romance Promise: all the romance you’re looking for with an HEA/HFN. It’s a promise!

Where to Buy*:
More Info:

Melinda's Review:

I really enjoyed this age gap m/m romance because I thought McCade handled the power dynamics really well. I’ve read others by him with interesting power dynamics as well and it seems to be something that he just maneuvers in interesting ways. Fox and Summer exchanges kisses once a day and this ratchets up the romantic tension slowly throughout the book, which I loved. The book has a sweetness to it, which I really appreciated.


Thanks for the reviews, Melinda!


Until Next Time,

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