Review: Restore Me (Shatter Me #4) by Tehereh Mafi

Title: Restore Me
Author: Tehereh Mafi
Publisher/Year:  HarperCollins Publishing 3/6/18
Length:   255 Pages
Series:  Shatter Me #4

Overview

The girl with the power to kill with a single touch now has the world in the palm of her hand.

Juliette and Warner’s story continues in the electrifying fourth installment of Tahereh Mafi’s New York Timesbestselling Shatter Me series.

Juliette Ferrars thought she’d won. She took over Sector 45, was named the new Supreme Commander of North America, and now has Warner by her side. But when tragedy strikes, she must confront the darkness that dwells both around and inside her.

Who will she become in the face of adversity? Will she be able to control the power she wields, and use it for good?

My Thoughts

To be honest, i didn’t think that there would be a book 4, and i had a hard time remembering where we had left off in book 3, but i’m glad that i stuck it out for those first few chapters.  What we have here is an interesting continuation of the story that had a potential pause with Juliette taking over North America, and now we’ve restarted it all.

This next installment takes us to a point in time where Juliette is overwhelmed, still reliant on Kenji to be her best friend and source of guidance, and still madly in love with Warner.  the challenge there though is that Warner is in a tough head space in this book, and we see that life gets in the way of love – so you really don’t have a true sense of where these two are going to net out.  They can’t ever seem to catch a break now can they?

The journey in this book is one where the other supreme commanders are now ultra curious about who Juliette is and what she’s done and will do – so they send their children to the sector to uncover secrets.  We meet a few interesting people who we aren’t yet sure we’re able to trust, and along with them, a LOT of secrets are revealed.

We learn that Juliette isn’t at all what she seemed and what she thought she was, and sadly it was Warner who was guided to learn the truth (Castle is the bearer of information it seems) and as a result, he’s put in a position where telling Juliette what he knows means that he may lose her.

Her past is definitely not what we were led to believe, and how she got to the asylum and what her role is in life now are coming to the forefront of this story.  We are left with more questions than answers for sure, and the twist at the end makes us really wonder if anything that we knew from the first 3 books was real.

We meed Haider and Nazeera in this book – the children of the supreme commander of Asia, and they play an interesting role.  We’re never quite sure what to make of them, they aren’t really honest with their words or actions, but what comes out as they interact more and more with Juliette and Warner, it is a huge shock and potentially story changing.

When Juliette’s life is put in danger not once but twice in this story, we start to see who really is on what side, and question what we know even more.  The set up for book 5 really is nicely done, leaving us on a cliff that makes you really wonder what’s going to happen and what does that means for life as everyone knows it.

There’s one other aspect to this story that we only really saw in the later installments of the first few books.  The romance between Warner and Juliette started slow, and now is hot and intense for a YA book.  You can see how they are teenagers but they feel for each other in a much more mature sense, and the way that their love and passion comes through is genuine, and yet fairly appropriate for the nature of the book.

Anyhow – i can’t wait now for book 5, and i hope that you guys catch up on this series.

Review: Turn Me On (Man of the Month #7) by J Kenner

Title: Turn Me On
Author: J Kenner
Publisher/Year:  Martini & Olive 4/17/18
Length:   124 Pages
Series:  Man of the Month #7

Overview

Sometimes one night just isn’t enough.
Though they see each other only once a month, Amanda’s sweet body and wicked ways have been driving Derek wild for over a year.
And now that he’s moving to Austin, Derek is determined to have Amanda in his bed permanently.
There’s only one problem: Amanda’s happy with their current arrangement. Can Derek convince her a lifetime of nights together will be so much sweeter?
Meet Mr. July … he’s determined to heat things up.

My Thoughts

I love this series – and what’s different in this next installment is that we get a flashback in time from the whole series as well as being brought up to speed to present day.  It’s great when we get to see how the characters knew each other before and how their stories really began a while back, leading up to what we see in the quest to save The Fix.

So here we get Amanda’s story.  She’s Nolan’s sister and we got to know a bit about her from that, as well as through Jenna – who is one of her good friends.  We’ve really never gotten a full picture of what makes her tick before, knowing what made her into the cynic that she is, but here we do.  Her challenge is that a man ruined her sense of self in relationships as well as in her profession since being with him made her lose opportunities in her company.  Now she’s sworn to keep men at arm’s length and to use her feminine wiles to make her career blossom.

Then there’s Derek, a guy who comes from a family that’s based in Dallas and owns a hotel conglomerate.  He comes from money but he doesn’t ride the coattails of that one.  He wants to expand the business and take risks, change the reputation that he’s been given, and make his father proud since that seems impossible.

Knowing that these two are driven by conflicting things, we know that their pairing will be a tough one.  However…..it turns out to be easier than they thought – neither wants something firm and since they aren’t geographically in the same place, it’s even better.  So what’s the catch right?

That’s where our story takes shape.  We get to go on the journey with them of what it means to be in a ‘thing’ with someone who’s not available emotionally but maybe wants more without saying it.  And it’s sweet to see how they push each other but keep each other at arms length still.  It’s when situations change that we see how things get torn apart – running scared and perhaps ruining what could be great.

Our amazing author does it again here – giving us a story about a couple that’s so perfect for each other but are too blind to see it for a while and then challenge each other to get to a good place.  their chemistry as always is off the charts, and makes you really root for them even when they don’t want it.

I can’t wait to see what’s next in book 8.  We know Taylor as the hostess for the man of the month contest, and we met Landon in this 7th installment, – so to see how things take shape with them will be great.  there was also the issue of the car ‘accident’ that came at the end of book 7 that makes you wonder what Taylor’s back story is and how that will affect things for everyone – that the cop/detective that Landon is, will surely help.  So, on that note, 2 weeks of waiting and then we’ll find out.  If you haven’t read this series – i really suggest you start!  Enjoy!

Review: In Your Eyes (Man of the Month #6) by J Kenner

Title: In Your Eyes
Author: J Kenner
Publisher/Year:  Martini & Olive 3/27/18
Length:   167 Pages
Series:  Man of the Month #6

Overview

Possessive hands. Wild obsession. He’ll break any rule to claim her.

Billionaire bad boy Parker Manning buried his dark past beneath fast cars and faster women. With his chiseled good looks and Texas oil legacy, Parker’s used to laying claim to whatever–or whoever–he desires, and he’s never met a woman he couldn’t seduce into his bed.

Not, that is, until Megan Clark. Years ago, she flatly refused him. Now, she’s back–and she needs a favor. No way is Parker letting her get away again, and he conditions his agreement on one sensuous night with Megan in his bed and at his mercy.

He never expects to want more. To crave this woman who fascinates and challenges him. But he does, and now he’s determined to possess her.

But Megan’s a woman with secrets of her own, and if Parker wants to claim her, he’s going to have to conquer his past and show Megan his true heart.

Meet Mr. June. Summer’s heat has nothing on him.

My Thoughts

This series continues with Megan’s story.  We’ve come to love her as the girl who is an LA transplant and a great makeup artist.  She’s come on board with the bar and contest more so as a marketing guru since there’s more of a need for that, and her ideas are really starting to payoff for the team.  the challenge of course is when she thinks that she’s managed to get one of Austin’s best and brightest on board and learns that it’s not truly the case.  To add to that – they have crossed paths before, so you know that it’ll get dicey.

Parker is the kind of guy who’s used to getting what he wants, and he used to steamroll over people to get those things that potentially seemed out of reach.  When Megan turned him down, it bruised his ego, and to learn that she ended up with a guy in their circle who maybe wasn’t the best for her, that hurt even more.  So he takes a twisted and sick joy out of getting her to do what he wants now that she owes him.

True to form in this series, nothing comes easy.  Megan has her own obstacles to overcome, first the fact that she fled LA to get away from an abusive boyfriend and hopes to stay under cover in Austin.  Then there’s Parker who she’s still attracted to as she was back in LA and even considers acting on that attraction.  There’s also the fact that she’s not sure where her next paycheck will come from if the folks at the Fix decide that they don’t need her or can’t afford her, and the stresses keep piling up.

what’s nice here is that even though there’s a high level of animosity between these two from the get go, it’s fueled by an intense sexual tension that they finally allow to bubble up to the surface and when that happens, it has a great potential to be hot.

The twist of course comes when the past that Megan was running from some how manages to come to the present.  She hears from a friend in LA who tries to warn her off Parker in a very similar fashion of what she lived through in LA.  then there’s the fact that her ex shows up in Austin once he discovers that she’s there, and he tries the same tactics.  While Megan has a lot of trust and faith in Parker, she almost blindly is willing to believe what her heart says.  There’s also no resolution to some of the comments that are tossed around, so we get no real closure from any of these folks.  It’s confusing to me, but oh well.

So, June comes to a close as the previous months have – we get a really hot story at times and a really sweet and romantic story at others.  There’s a lot of great stuff going on for all the folks that we’ve met, and yes, while like J Kenner says, these are stand alone, it’s really great and helpful to read the full series to see not only the progress of what’s happening at the bar, but to learn more and more about the characters and how their lives are intertwined.  since they all are.  So, on that note – enjoy!

Review: Headmaster (Lessons from the RACK #2) by Tara Sue Me

Title: Headmaster
Author: Tara Sue Me
Publisher/Year:  Penguin Group Publishing 1/16/18
Length:   197 Pages
Series:  Lessons from the RACK #2

Overview

Lennox MacLure, owner of the RACK Academy, has sworn off the Dominant/submissive lifestyle. Years ago, his submissive, Winnie, died in a car accident following a heated argument for which he blames himself. Guilt-ridden and emotionally closed off, Lennox sees the academy as both his punishment and penance for her death.

Mariela, a dance instructor and a natural submissive, was Winnie’s best friend and longs to help Lennox move past his grief. She’s accepted that he will never see her as anything more than a friend, but she still wants to help him acknowledge what he needs. Mariela comes up with a plan of seduction, guaranteed to unleash the Dominant he’s willfully buried—but the passion they unleash could prove to be stronger than they are ready to handle.

My Thoughts

Well i’ll be honest, it’s been a while since i read the first installment to this series so i wasn’t entirely sure what the plot line from book 1 was, however i quickly rectified that getting into the flow of this story at the mention of Andie and Fulton from book 1.  So in this second installment, we have the story of Lennox, the man who created the RACK Academy and Marie, the woman that he’s hired to run the dance portion of things, and also a woman that he’s got a complicated history with.

Throughout this story, what we get is a mix of emotions with the most robust highs and lows that you can expect.  We know that there’s tension between them, we felt it in book 1 (yes i remembered that finally) but as expected from our amazing author, there’s a huge obstacle in the form of a ghost that keeps them even further than arms length apart.

Lennox’s history is that he was with a woman named Winnie for a few years, she was his love and his world revolved around her.  They didn’t have the easiest relationship of course, but they had a good one for a while.  There was an amazing attraction between them, but the challenge was that Winnie wasn’t part of the lifestyle before him and wasn’t truly interested in it after she met him, but she was so drawn to him that she made herself pretend.

Then there’s Marie – who ironically was like a sister to Winnie.  They knew each other from when they were young, and the painful thing here is that Marie saw Lennox first and she was actually part of the lifestyle and truly belonged there, but that didn’t matter to the couple.  she had to grin and bear it while her friend got the life and man that she wanted.

Of course it came crashing down when Winnie and Lennox had to admit to each other that they weren’t right for each other, resulting in Winnie getting into a fatal car accident.  So that leads us to where we are today in the story – seeing how these two have the same ghost in different context and it keeps them from truly holding on and living with their attraction for one another, and instead they have to live with the pain and the fact that they won’t allow their feelings to come to life.

It’s a sweet story though as you read through it.  Both of these main characters are so strong that we know that they have to have a happy ending, but the forces of nature (literally in one chapter) are pushing the apart and the question becomes what will it take to get them together, and will it be enough to hold them?

True to form with Tara Sue Me, we get angst, we get hot sexy romance and we get another near fatal car crash – and similar to book one where there was a boat situation, it takes catastrophe for people to realize that maybe they need to let their baggage go.  What happens here in this story is that it’s not a happy ending for everyone, not in the classic sense, and that sets up the next installment nicely since we get to see how it’s not one of the main characters from the academy that gets a plotline, but someone from the peripheral. Anyhow – it’s hot, it’s steamy and it’s really a well written story.  so i hope you guys check it out and then wait for book 3 i suppose.  Enjoy!