2021 Book #5 – Shipped by Angie Hockman

Title: Shipped
Author: Angie Hockman
Date finished: 1/7/21
Genre: Contemporary romance
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publication Date: January 19, 2021
Pages in book: 335
Stand alone or series: Stand alone
Where I got the book from: NetGalley
NOTE: I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

Blurb from the cover:

The Unhoneymooners meets The Hating Game in this witty, clever, and swoonworthy novel following a workaholic marketing manager who is forced to go on a cruise with her arch-nemesis when they’re up for the same promotion.

Between taking night classes for her MBA and her demanding day job at a cruise line, marketing manager Henley Evans barely has time for herself, let alone family, friends, or dating. But when she’s shortlisted for the promotion of her dreams, all her sacrifices finally seem worth it.

The only problem? Graeme Crawford-Collins, the remote social media manager and the bane of her existence, is also up for the position. Although they’ve never met in person, their epic email battles are the stuff of office legend.

Their boss tasks each of them with drafting a proposal on how to boost bookings in the Galápagos—best proposal wins the promotion. There’s just one catch: they have to go on a company cruise to the Galápagos Islands…together. But when the two meet on the ship, Henley is shocked to discover that the real Graeme is nothing like she imagined. As they explore the Islands together, she soon finds the line between loathing and liking thinner than a postcard.

With her career dreams in her sights and a growing attraction to the competition, Henley begins questioning her life choices. Because what’s the point of working all the time if you never actually live?

Perfect for fans of Christina Lauren and Sally Thorne, Shipped is a fresh and engaging rom-com that celebrates the power of second chances and the magic of new beginnings.

My rating:  4.25 stars out of a scale of 5

My review: I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review.

This book was described as The Unhoneymooners meets The Hating Game and, not only did that description really interest me because I enjoyed both of those books, but I think that was a really apt description for this book. The description of the travels of the cruise ship and the sites and scenery that Graeme and Henley were able to experience were very transporting. I felt like I was experiencing all of those things myself. I really like the enemy coworkers to lovers trope and this one was pretty good. Henley sounded whiny to me in some parts, but overall I liked her and Graeme’s story and how their relationship was developed. The focus on teamwork in the story was also a really endearing one – it was great to see the supportive crew that Henley was surrounded by. Some pieces of the story were a little slow for me but overall I really enjoyed this story and would definitely recommend it.

Click on the cover to go to the book’s Amazon page

2018 Book #26 – My Lady’s Choosing by Kitty Curran and Larissa Zageris

51eh+HcP-0LTitle: My Lady’s Choosing
Author: Kitty Curran & Larissa Zageris
Date finished: 4/6/18
Genre: Historical romance, choose your own adventure
Publisher: Quirk Books
Publication Date: April 3, 2018
Pages in book: 352
Stand alone or series: Stand alone
Where I got the book from: Edelweiss NOTE: I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

Blurb from the cover:

The romance novel that lets you pick your path, follow your heart, and find happily ever after

You are the plucky but penniless heroine in the center of eighteenth-century society, courtship season has begun, and your future is at hand. Will you flip forward fetchingly to find love with the bantering baronet Sir Benedict Granville? Or turn the page to true love with the hardworking, horse-loving highlander Captain Angus McTaggart? Or perhaps race through the chapters chasing a good (and arousing) man gone mad, bad, and scandalous to know, Lord Garraway Craven? Or read on recklessly and take to the Continent as the “traveling companion” of the spirited and adventuresome Lady Evangeline? Or yet some other intriguing fate? Make choices, turn pages, and discover all the daring delights of the multiple (and intertwining!) storylines. And in every path you pick, beguiling illustrations bring all the lust and love to life.

My rating:  4.75 stars out of a scale of 5

My review: I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review.

I used to LOVE those choose your own adventure novels from when I was a kid, so when I saw this book being offered that was a choose your won adventure ROMANCE novel I was shocked. Who even knew such amazing things existed! Not me, well until now. I do have to say that I tried to read it on my Kindle Paper-white at first and I don’t know if its just because I had an older version but I couldn’t get the page numbers to show up, which if you’ve ever read a book like this you realize would be a problem. I obtained a paperback copy of the book though which made things a lot easier. And I diligently mapped out each story line in the book to make sure I covered all the different twists and turns that the story could take. What a creative and fun idea this was! I found intrigue and adventure in every path I took and the book really made me feel like I was a part of the story line.

Basically there were 4 main paths you could end up with in the book: Sir Benedict, Lord Craven, Captain Angus, or Lady Evangeline. There was a lot of tongue-in-cheek and sarcastic humor, I was laughing out loud through the whole book. The authors did a great job of just making every detail of the story comical and fun. The plot lines are simple and straight-forward since there are multiple stories all included in the one book but the authors write with such a blunt, no nonsense manner that the reader can’t help but enjoy themselves the whole way along. In all the stories there is obviously some graphic descriptions (this is a romance novel) but again the authors make it very lighthearted and fun. One of the funniest lust-worthy scenes to me was the one where the reader ends up with a post man and this “path” ends with “Some might say the postman sends you, Oh he sends you, indeed!” and there are other postman related sex-puns and its just really comical.

I really can’t say enough good things about this book, it was fun and comical and light-hearted and interesting. I really enjoyed it so much and I think everyone should read it! I am sure a LOT of work went into this, it can’t be easy to map out where everything goes and get the page numbers exactly right for flipping back and forth. I would love to see these two authors come out with another similar adventure sometime in the future!

Link to author website

Click on the cover to go to the book’s Amazon page

2016 Book #23 – Nerd In Shining Armor by Vicki Lewis Thompson

51xCdBbrd-LTitle: Nerd In Shining Armor
Author: Vicki Lewis Thompson
Date finished: 3/17/16
Genre: Contemporary romance
Publisher: Dell
Publication Date: April 29, 2003
Pages in book: 324
Stand alone or series: #1 in the Nerd series (stand alone stories)
Where I got the book from: My personal collection! I’ve had this one since High School

Blurb from the cover:

For Genevieve Terrence it seemed like a dream come true: a weekend alone on Maui with her sexy boss, Nick Brogan. But little did she know that Nick had dreams of his own–a nefarious scheme that nearly got her killed on the flight over the Pacific. Lucky for her, brilliant computer programmer Jack Farley was on board and quick-witted enough to crash-land the plane. Now Jack is her sole companion on a remote desert island with nothing but guava trees and sharks for company. Who’d expect the shy genius–and the least alpha male she knows–to turn out to be the uninhibited stud of her wildest dreams?
Saving Genevieve’s life has made Jack a hero in the eyes of the woman he has secretly lusted after for months. Now they’re alone together in a tropical eden where they’re free to give in to their every sensual whim. But when some nasty unfinished business puts them at risk again, Gen will learn there’s nothing quite as dangerous as a fully aroused ex-nerd who’ll move heaven and earth to protect the woman he loves…

My rating: 4.0 stars out of a scale of 5

My review: This book will count towards my “PopSugar 2016 Checklist” reading challenge, marking off the “a book you haven’t read since high school” square since I last read this book sometime in high school. This is the first book in the “Nerd” series by this author, which became a fast favorite of mine once I discovered the existence of romance novels during high school. I had a hankering to re-read this one after my recent read A Sudden Crush had a somewhat similar story line and reminded me how much I had originally liked this type of story. This book is about Genevieve Terrence who gets stuck on a remote island with the nerd computer programmer from her firm, Jackson Farley. Jack has had a crush on Genevieve since he started at the firm and he’s never worked up the courage to tell her how he felt. Luckily for him this stay on a deserted island with her is a great chance for some one on one bonding time.
Overall I enjoyed this book the first few times I read it back in high school and I enjoyed reading it again now. The characters are all full of spunk and heart and I loved the side story with Genevieve’s mom, Annabelle. The story line is full of adventure and intrigue. This really was a pleasure to read again and I am hoping to find time to re-read more of the Nerd series soon!

The bottom line: This is one of my favorites in the romance genre, love the Nerd series . This story in particular is exciting and full of adventure. Very romantic as well.

Link to author website

Click on the cover to go to the book’s Amazon page

2016 Book #1 – Captain Rum by John Perrier

51nHVnqrh3LTitle: Captain Rum
Author: John Perrier
Date finished: 1/2/16
Genre: Historical fiction
Publisher: JP Publishing Australia
Publication Date: February 26, 2015
Pages in book: 352
Stand alone or series: Stand alone
Where I got the book from: Author/publisher NOTE: I received this book for free from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

Blurb from the cover:

When an Oxford Professor stumbles upon an old naval Captain’s log, he unwittingly discovers what many scholars now agree is one of the greatest maritime adventures in history.
In 1821, Captain Fintan McAdam set sail from London, solo, in search of adventure. During his journey, he discovered incredible new worlds and interacted with their amazing inhabitants. They forced him to confront his enemies within, learning much about himself.
Captain Rum, as told in McAdam’s own words through his journal, is a tale of discovery, despair and delight. It will keep you enthralled through many a stormy night.

My rating: 3.25 stars out of a scale of 5

My review: I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review. This book is about Captain Fintan McAdam, the son of a ship-maker who has recently purchased his own vessel in the hopes of escaping England. McAdam has been on the run for a few years now, after his escape from prison in London. He tries to spend only as much time as necessary in London before casting off, but he still ends up escaping the police only in the nick of time. While McAdam was using his vessel to permanently escape the police, he was also trying to escape the memories of his past. He lost his wife in a tragic accident and the images of that day still haunt him daily. McAdam hopes that some time alone at sea will take him away from all the triggering events for these awful visions.
While at sea McAdam has multiple points where he barely survives. He lives through a typhoon, a severely damaged ship, near starvation, and an encounter with a primitive tribe on some remote island. Through most of the story McAdam is aided by his bird friend, Bubo, who he discovers floating on debris after the typhoon and nurtures back to health.
Overall I enjoyed this book. It was very different and had a lot of interesting points to it, including McAdam’s experiences on both Bird Rock and Boot Island and his experience with training Bubo, who turned out to be a very intelligent bird. I found myself reminded at certain points of a recent read for me, The Island of Dr. Moreau, only because the reader sometimes wonders if the fantastical happenings are real or just the figment of a hysterical sailor’s imagination from being lost at sea. There is where the similarity ends though since I didn’t find Captain Rum to be at all dark or sinister. The story was charming and while there were a couple of slow points for me the story was engaging and kept my interest throughout. I was especially interested in Bubo the bird, I found it fascinating that a bird could be so well trained. While this bok isn’t one that I would normally have picked up on my own, it would definitely appeal more to readers who enjoy maritime novels, especially historical ones.

The bottom line: I thought this book was very interesting! While this wasn’t something I normally would have picked up on my own, this was a really interesting story and I would recommend it, especially to those who enjoy historical maritime novels.


Click on the cover to go to the book’s Amazon page

2015 Book #25 – I Loved a Rogue by Katharine Ashe


Title: I Loved a Rogue
Author: Katharine Ashe
Date finished: 3/30/15
Genre: Historical romance
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: February 24, 2015
Pages in book: 365
Stand alone or series: Prince Catchers series #3

Blurb from the cover:

In the third in Katharine Ashe’s Prince Catchers series, the eldest of three very different sisters must fulfill a prophecy to discover their birthright. But if Eleanor is destined to marry a prince, why can’t she resist the scoundrel who seduced her?She can pour tea, manage a household, and sew a modest gown. In short, Eleanor Caulfield is the perfect vicar’s daughter. Yet there was a time when she’d risked everything for a black-eyed gypsy who left her brokenhearted. Now he stands before her—dark, virile, and ready to escort her on a journey to find the truth about her heritage.
Leaving eleven years ago should have given Taliesin freedom. Instead he’s returned to Eleanor, determined to have her all to himself, tempting her with kisses and promising her a passion she’s so long denied herself. But if he was infatuated before, he’s utterly unprepared for what will happen when Eleanor decides to abandon convention—and truly live . . .

My rating: 3.75 stars out of a scale of 5
My review: This book will be counting towards my goal for the Pop Sugar Reading Challenge 2015 checklist under the “a book set in a different country” check box. This is the third book in a series about three sisters who have no idea who their real mother and father are. Since Arabella (I Married the Duke) and Ravenna (I Adored a Lord) are both married and preoccupied now, Eleanor has been asked to take up the lead on the investigation into how the three girls ended up on a boat with just their nanny so many years ago. Arabella asks an old family friend, Taliesin, to help Eleanor on the journey. I liked Eleanor’s character alot too, she was a fairly strong character and held her own. But the drugging scene was so awful I could barely read it.

I was hooked on the story, I couldn’t put the book down. I liked this book much better than the first two in the series. That being said, I was disappointed with the ending and with how many inconsistencies there were in the story. After being drugged and not eating for like two weeks she’s able to recover enough in a few days to travel, that I can understand, but then to have sex like 4 times in one night? Seriously? That seemed a bit, well, not do-able. And the same with the previous two books in the series, I felt as if the book alternated between sections that were too fast and too slow parts. And I didn’t feel like the ending fit with the story, it just made me feel weird.

The bottom line:
  This was a good ending to the series, and while there were some holes and I didn’t love the end, I thought it was a good book and I would likely recommend it.

Author website
Link to Amazon