Posted by Black Heart Reviews on Mar 31, 2015 in Reviews | Comments Off on Review: Silver Bastard by Joanna Wylde
Series: Silver Valley #1
Release Date: April 7, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: Copy provided for honest review
First in the new Silver Valley series from the New York Times bestselling author of the Reapers Motorcycle Club Novels
Fourteen months. For fourteen months, Puck Redhouse sat in a cell and
kept his mouth shut, protecting the Silver Bastards MC from their
enemies. Then he was free and it was time for his reward—full membership
in the club, along with a party to celebrate. That’s when he saw Becca
Jones for the first time and set everything in motion. Before the night
ended he’d violated his parole and stolen her away from everything she
Five years. It was five years ago that Puck destroyed
Becca and saved her all in one night. She’s been terrified of him ever
since, but she’s even more terrified of the monsters he still protects
her from… But Becca refuses to let fear control her. She’s living her
life and moving forward, until she gets a phone call from the past she
can’t ignore. She has to go back, and there’s only one man she can trust
to go with her—the ex-con biker who rescued her once before.
Puck will help her again, but this time it’ll be on his terms. No more
lies, no more tears, and no more holding back what he really wants…
The special thing about Silver Bastard is the balance Wylde created. Hard and soft, tragic and funny, loving and callous.
I was a little sick after the first chapter. That callousness I mentioned…yeah, Becca’s past had plenty of that with and a huge dose of evil added into it. Honestly, I was concerned this was going to be a much much more emotional read than what I’m used to from Wylde.
It is emotional, but the added humor that Becca brings to the story pulls it from being such a dark tale. It brings some hope, some brightness, some joy. Which is quite amazing in itself, as Becca growing up the way she did…could easily have very little joy in life. She’s full of life, she’s got moxie. She also has some anger issues, which only made me love her more…I can relate.
Puck, for all his hard exterior and rough lifestyle, is deeply a good guy. He doesn’t have the heart to break a fragile thing. Which is exactly how he sees Becca. Fragile. Breakable. Doesn’t stop him from wanting her, but it does stop him from claiming her. And who doesn’t like a tough exterior with a heart of gold?
While I adored and loved all over Puck and his raw sexiness…this book was all about Becca for me. At times I wanted to smack her up side the damn head, but for the most part – I loved her fierceness and her will to just survive. Not only to survive, but to do it on her terms, by her rules. Quite a feat in the MC world where men reign supreme. How she handled Puck was admirable and gutsy.
Silver Bastard is a look at Wylde’s MC world from the outside. Instead of being neck deep in it, the story skirts it a bit. The MC is still very central to the story, you just don’t wade in a world of debauchery like some other MC titles out there.
That being said, it’s still a very thrilling story full of lies, betrayal, hurt and above everything else; understanding and love. I enjoyed every little bit of it and am excited to see what comes next in the series!
Posted by Black Heart Reviews on Mar 25, 2015 in Reviews | Comments Off on Reveal: Fall For Me by JC Emery
Publication Date: April 30, 2015
Melanie Kincaid is a trust-fund baby with a knack for sassy
comebacks and unnecessarily complicating her privileged life. So, of course she
would have to fall in love with a man she can’t have.
Jameson Hayes is a NYC firefighter for Manhattan’s oldest
ladder company with big shoes to fill and a city to protect. He’s strong, sexy,
and not looking for the complications Melanie brings. But he can’t stay away
from her either. The attraction between them is immediate and the pull between
them is crazy powerful. But she’s only home for the summer and long-distance
relationships never work.
Unfortunately, Melanie’s beauty and smart mouth are a lethal
combination and Jameson isn’t the only Hayes who’s interested. As if his
brother isn’t enough to compete with, now the city’s most famous arsonist wants
to claim her as his next prize. Jameson can’t stand to watch Melanie get hurt
and she can’t seem to keep herself out of trouble.
Fall for Me is the first Ladder Company novel, a stand-alone
companion series about New York’s most elite firefighting family with hot alpha
heroes, snarky heroines, and an arsonist hell-bent on destruction.
As a child, JC was fascinated by things that went bump in
the night. As they say, some things never change. Now, as an adult, she divides
her time between the sexy law men, mythical creatures, and kick-ass heroines
that live inside her head and pursuing her bachelor’s degree in English. JC is
a San Francisco Bay Area native, but has also called both Texas and Louisiana
home. These days she rocks her flip flops year round in Northern California and
can’t imagine a climate more beautiful.
JC writes adult, new adult, and young adult fiction. She dabbles in many
different genres including science fiction, horror, chick lit, and murder
mysteries, yet she is most enthralled by supernatural stories– and everything
has at least a splash of romance.
Posted by Black Heart Reviews on Mar 24, 2015 in Reviews | Comments Off on Review: Monster Stepbrother by Harlow Grace
Release Date: February 9, 2015
Publisher: Harlow Grace
Genre: New Adult
Rating: ★ ½
His dark obsession runs deep.
He’s obsessed with her.
She’s addicted to him.
Two damaged souls.
Will they heal or ruin one another?
How does a girl go from being Daddy’s precious doll to a different kind of toy?
Easy really. When my father remarries it changes the course of my life and everything becomes . . . complicated.
new stepbrother is a monster who hates me. Unapologetic, controlling,
and brazen, he’s intent on making my life a living hell.
Oliver King makes the rules. Whenever he wants. However he wants. Wherever he wants.
My head screams this is wrong, but I can’t resist giving in to forbidden desires.
I want it as much as he does.
I’m his possession, his ultimate pleasure, his dark obsession.
addiction to him grows to a dangerous level. I can’t stop craving more
from the man who has made me his and ruined me for anyone else.
Can what starts out as lust and vengeance end as love?
Can we take away one another’s pain and ease one another’s fears?
Nobody said life or love was easy.
My name is Maya Childs, and this is my story.
Let’s be honest. The extra half star on the rating? Purely because I was somehow able to finish this book.
Here’s the thing… Stepbrother romances have exploded in the past few months. I read the one that started it, I loved it. In an attempt to try and recapture a little bit of that taboo love, I picked up Monster Stepbrother. I like dark and dirty, add that to a forbidden romance and it gets me all atwitter.
However, Monster Stepbrother felt completely thrown together on a whim. Perhaps only for a chance to grab some of the readers who, like me, loved that ‘other book’. Monster Stepbrother failed miserably for me.
Maya first meets Oliver when her father marries his mother. Maya is twelve at the time, Oliver sixteen. Oliver hates that he is being thrown into a new family after the recent death of his father but Maya fosters a little schoolgirl crush on Oliver. It isn’t until Maya is sixteen that any attraction really begins. And that’s where the story started to fall apart for me.
Maya, at sixteen, is fucking brazen. She does shit that I can’t possibly believe many teenage virgins would. It’s one thing to be obsessed with a boy and find flirty ways to get his attention, it’s an entirely other thing to do the things Maya does. Seriously, what virgin gets herself off and licks her fingers? While her stepbrother watches??
Now Oliver, is very dirty and that does fit with his character. He’s also a moody mother dick and going from hot to cold the way he did annoyed the shit out of me. Not in that “why can’t you get your life right” way but in the “what the fuck is wrong with this book” way. It didn’t feel authentic. There was no connection between his feelings and his actions.
This is the way of the story through most of the book. Not only with Oliver and Maya, but some of the supporting characters never made much sense to me either. There were entirely too many instances that felt tossed in just to make the story progress.
On top of all that, the sex wasn’t even all that hot. It felt just as cold and detached as the characters.
Boo for stepbrother romances. Maybe someday, after the hype dies a horrible death, another good one will come along.
Posted by Black Heart Reviews on Mar 24, 2015 in Reviews | Comments Off on Review: Fisher’s Light by Tara Sivec
Release Date: March 24, 2015
Publisher: Tara Sivec
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Source: From Author for Review
Rating: ★★★★ ½
I guess this is it, huh? After fourteen years together, starting a life of our own on this island, five deployments and countless letters I’ve written you through it all, I finally go out to the mailbox and see something I’ve always dreamed of: an envelope with your handwriting on it. For one moment, I actually thought you’d changed your mind, that all the awful things you said to me were just your way of coping after everything you’d been through. I was still here, Fisher. I was still here, holding my breath, waiting for you to come back even though you told me you never would. You always said you’d find your way back to me. Out of all the lies you’ve told me, this one hurts the most.
Enclosed you will find the signed divorce papers, as requested.
I hope you find what you’re looking for. I’m sorry it wasn’t me.
To get the ending they want, Lucy and Fisher will have to go back to the beginning. Through the good and the bad, they’ll be reminded of why they always made their way back to each other, and why this time, one way or another, it will be the last time.
While I love Tara Sivec for all the funny and laugh-out-loud moments she’s given us from her previous works, I think her talents truly shine when she makes her readers all sappy and emotional. I knew Sivec was capable of bringing the feels (as she had demonstrated in Watch Over Me
), so I was more than ready to read FISHER’S LIGHT
as soon as she released the synopsis. From start to finish, Tara Sivec showed me how she’s one of the most well-rounded writers out there in the indie romance community.
I’ve lost him. Everything he ever promised me was a lie. He was never going to find his way back to me.
After returning from his fifth deployment, Lucy Fisher has noticed that her husband Jefferson Fisher just isn’t the same man that left her many months ago. He’s detached from her physically and emotionally, and no matter how hard she tries to be there to comfort him, they continue to drift further and further apart. Not new to this behavior, Lucy tries to wait it out with Fisher and continues to hope that he will eventually reach out to her for her help and comfort.
But after months and months of being physically and emotionally void, Fisher abruptly packs all of Lucy’s things and demands she leave the house they have shared for the last ten years. After spewing hurtful words to Lucy, and causing a scene in front of their small island community, Fisher disappears from Fisher Island without leaving a word as to where he has gone off to. A few weeks later, Lucy receives a package in the mail from Fisher that leaves her utterly devastated.
Was I happy? Did I ever smile and laugh easily without a care in the world? How do I get that back when the darkness is hell bent on taking over, holding me in it’s clutches and making sure I never see the sunshine again?
Told in alternating POV’s that flash between the present and the past, Tara Sivec shows us how Lucy and Fisher went from the high school sweetheart couple to the present couple who have been living in hurt, pain and regret for the last thirteen months. Seeing Lucy and Fisher’s marriage deteriorate was real devastating to read. It was very obvious that these two loved each other with every fiber of their body, but they just could not communicate what they were going through. I felt Lucy’s hopelessness when she had no clue as to how to help her husband. Wanting to be there for the person you love the most but not knowing how to help them must be the worst feeling in the world.
…you have to figure out on your own that there are more important things than fighting a battle we might never win. Sometimes there are more important things to fight for right here at home.
While having to read Lucy’s part of the story was heartbreaking, Sivec really kicks you in the gut with tales Fisher’s struggles with PTSD. For many soldiers, the war they are fighting doesn’t end as soon as they walk away from the battlefields. Fisher’s battle with the disease was a result of many years spent in war torn countries and then going back home and trying to transition back into normal life. Every emotion that Fisher went through felt so heart-wrenchingly real, raw and devastating, that I had to take a break between intense moments just to get through the book. Seeing him relive horrific nightmares and flashbacks really gutted me, and made me think of the hundreds of thousands of our own US soldiers who suffer through this mental disease. While Fisher’s struggles is a fictionalized, Sivec does a phenomenal job at representing it as true and raw. His story will gut you and break your heart, so make sure you have tissues close by if you’re a crier.
War changes everyone, son, there’s no shame in that. If it doesn’t change you, you were already too fucked up to begin with. What’s important is that you did the right thing and you found your way home.
From watching Fisher and Lucy’s once happy marriage disintegrate, to witnessing Fisher’s heartbreaking struggle with PTSD, and seeing how Lucy and Fisher put the pieces of their lives back together again, Tara Sivec has definitely set out to give her readers all the feels in FISHER’S LIGHT. The passion and careful thought she put into writing about such a serious subject, such as PTSD, is displayed in this beautiful, emotional, and realistic piece of work. Your heart will ache for Lucy. It’ll break for Fisher. But you’ll be glued to every single page of this romance from beginning to end, so make sure you don’t miss out on it!
Posted by Black Heart Reviews on Mar 23, 2015 in Makeup Monday | Comments Off on Makeup Monday #5: Debbie’s Top 5 Drugstore Makeup
Makeup Monday is a weekly feature on Black Heart Reviews where we combine two of our favorites things: books and makeup! Hope you enjoy, and feel free to join in by posting your makeup regiment or beauty products on Monday via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter using #MakeupMonday!
We don’t actually have a book to feature with this week’s #MakeupMonday post. I wanted to talk to you guys about some of my favorite drugstore makeup products. While I do love to shop at Sephora, and basically give them all my monies, I do love going to my local drugstore for a few favorite/must have makeup products. You don’t always have to spend an arm and a leg for great makeup products and I’m here to show you my top 5 drugstore makeup….
1. Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circle Treatment Concealer
I don’t even know how long I’ve been using this product (it’s been a few years), but it’s definitely one makeup product that I use daily. Even when I’m using all high end products, I always end up using this concealer. I’m lucky that I don’t have very dark circles, but this concentrated and pigmented liquid concealer helps erase any appearance of dark circles, puffiness, and brightens my under eye area.
Favorite Color: Honey
2. Maybelline Color Tattoo Metal 24 Hour Cream Gel Eyeshadow
I love these cream gel eyeshadows from Maybelline! They come in a beautiful array of matte and metallic colors. I discovered them a few years ago and have been a fan ever since. You can use them on their own or layer is under you powder eye shadow to intensify the colors and has a long-lasting effect.
Favorite Color: Tough as Taupe, Bad to the Bronze
3. Milani Baked Blush
If you want to give your cheeks a nice healthy glow, then you need to get you some Milani Baked Blushes. These blushes are soft, have great pigmentation and are so easy to blend. The color Luminoso is my ride or die blush, and it ranks right up there with my high-end blushes. Luminoso is actually fairly similar to NARS Orgasm but without the hefty price tag. If you want to give your cheeks that sun-kissed glow this spring and summer, then you needs some Luminoso in your life
Favorite Color: Luminoso, Rose D’Oro
4. Revlon ColorBurst Balm Stain/Matte Balm
These balm stains give my lips life. They are my go to lip product on a day-to-day basis. I usually have one or two stashed in my purse, one in my car, and one stored in my desk at work. The balm stain looks so natural on the lips and gives it a nice stain of color. The color payoff for the matte balms is great and the velvet matte formula doesn’t dry out my lips.
Favorite Color: Honey, Adore, Sultry (Matte), Standout (Matte)
5. CoverGirl LashBlast Volume Mascara
While I have a few holy grail high-end mascaras in my makeup collection, some of my all-time favorite mascaras actually come from the drugstore. CoverGirl’s LashBlast Volume Mascara has been an ultimate favorite of mine for a few years and I usually end up picking this mascara over some of my favorite high-end mascaras. It’s s long-lasting, provides a lot of volume, and it does not clump.
Favorite Color: Very Black (Waterproof)
What are some of your favorite drugstore makeup products?
Let us know in the comments below.
Posted by Black Heart Reviews on Mar 21, 2015 in Reviews | Comments Off on Review: Wild Reckless by Ginger Scott
Wild Reckless by Ginger Scott
Series: Harper Boys #1
March 17, 2015
Genres: New Adult
Source: Copy for Honest Review
Also in this series: Wicked Restless
Also by this author: This is Falling
Kensington Worth had a vision for her senior year. It involved her best friends, her posh private school in downtown Chicago and time alone with her piano until her audition was perfected, a guaranteed ticket into the best music programs in the world.
Instead, a nightmare took over.
It didn’t happen all at once, but her life unraveled quickly—a tiny thread that evil somehow kept pulling until everything precious was taken from her. She was suddenly living miles away from her old life, trapped in an existence she didn’t choose—one determined to destroy her from the inside, leaving only hate and anger behind. It didn’t help that her neighbor, the one whose eyes held danger, was enjoying every second of her fall.
Owen Harper was trouble, his heart wild and his past the kind that’s spoken about in whispers. And somehow, his path was always intertwined with Kensington’s, every interaction crushing her, ruining her hope for any future better than her now. Sometimes, though, what everyone warns is trouble, is exactly what the heart needs. Owen Harper was consumed with darkness, and it held onto his soul for years. When Kensington looked at him, she saw a boy who’d gotten good at taking others down when they threatened his carefully balanced life. But the more she looked, the more she saw other things too—good things…things to admire.
Things…to love. Things that made her want to be reckless.
And those things…they were the scariest of all.
Ginger Scott is quickly becoming a must read author for me, she gracefully straddles the line between sweet romance and tragic love story – allowing for an immense range of feelings to flow throughout the story.
Wild Reckless starts off with Kensi finding herself in a new town, ripped away from a life she was comfortable in. Now she’s in a strange place with an even stranger boy living next door.
First impressions of Owen, for both Kensi and the reader, are a basket of mixed emotions. He’s a mysterious asshole, an intriguing dickhead, a sexy douchebag. Owen is all trouble, but it’s the kind of trouble you crave.
After the prologue, which is so sad, the story takes a much more lighthearted tone. But, as I said, Scott quickly takes it to a much deeper level. Throwing the worlds of both of these characters’ lives into complete tailspins and giving them each other to use as a lifeline.
Wild Reckless is a perfect example of opposites attract. Where Kensi is cautious and tame, Owen takes risks with himself. Where Kensi is at a point of needing to let go of things she found so stable in the past, Owen is desperately searching for something to anchor him.
Kensi recognizes something in Owen pretty early on, sees that he is more than what most see and she pushes him. She makes sure he knows she sees HIM and that she won’t back down to his bullshit. I loved this part of her. She’s so timid and naive in so many ways, but when it really counts, she’s a fierce little thing.
Though they find what they need in each other, a safety, a happiness, a love – life has other obstacles to place in their paths and it tests everything they’ve begun to learn about themselves and each other.
This book had me smiling like someone just gave me a magical cake that had zero calories, at times. At other times, I was in near tears like someone had given me that cake but stolen all the damn forks.
I couldn’t help but ache for these characters, for this story. While the ending felt a little chaotic and rushed for me, and at times it was slightly too young adult, most of Wild Reckless was absolutely perfect and I could not put it down.
Posted by Black Heart Reviews on Mar 20, 2015 in Reviews | Comments Off on New Release: Cement Heart by Beth Ehemann [Excerpt + Giveaway]
Lawrence Finkle, known simply to his die-hard Minnesota Wild fans as Viper, isn’t used to hearing the word no. He lives his whole life just a little on the reckless side. After all, life is just one big game, right?
When what was supposed to be an innocent bet goes horribly wrong, he’s left to deal with the aftermath— and the guilt. In an effort to make things right the best way he can, he ends up falling for the one person on the planet he never should have.
The old saying goes that two wrongs don’t make a right . . . or do they?
I found a bench right outside the
door at the very moment my legs decided to give out. Who knew a hard-ass
concrete bench could be so comforting? I ran my hands through my hair and
rested my elbows on my knees, staring at the concrete slab below me. An ant
slowly walked up to my foot and stopped. I wondered what it was like to be an
ant. Did they have friends and families? Did they accidentally hurt each other?
Did they feel guilt? I’d fought like hell my whole life to keep my feelings in
check and never let people see them, but the last two days were testing that
more than any other time in my life. I didn’t know how much longer I could keep
Praying was something we never
did in my house growing up, but at that moment I felt the overwhelming urge to
talk out loud to . . . someone.
Looking around to make sure I was
alone, I took a deep breath and puffed my cheeks out, exhaling slowly.
I glanced up at the sky for just
a second, quickly deciding I probably looked like a moron and that whoever I was
going to talk to would probably hear me no matter where I was looking.
“Hey, whoever’s up there. My name
is Lawrence Finkle, but you probably know me as Viper. Anyway—” I cleared my
throat, suddenly feeling very stupid that I was talking to myself, but so
desperate I was willing to do anything. “—we’ve never had what I would call an
active relationship, but right now I’m feeling pretty alone down here. I’ve
fucked up a lot in my life, as you probably know, but I’ve always been able to
talk myself out of any trouble I got into. Well, I’ve finally done something I
can’t fix. It was an accident, but I still can’t fix it, and I could really use
it at the moment. I don’t really know how this works, but I’m willing to
bargain. I’ll do anything—go to church, donate time and money, stop fucking
strangers. I mean it, anything . . . just please . . . save
my best friend. He’s a good man with a wife and kids who need him. If you need
to take someone, take me. No one gives a shit whether I’m here or not.” My eyes
started to feel hot and sting as I took another shaky breath.
Startled at the sound of my name,
I stood and turned as a camera flashed in my eyes. Squinting and holding my
hand up, I tried to block out another flash. “What the fuck?” I growled.
“Hi, Mr. Finkle. I’m Warren
Sanders with the Star Tribune here in
Minneapolis.” He held his hand out for me to shake. I glared down at it and
then back up at him without saying a word. He quickly pulled his hand back and
continued, “We heard about what happened yesterday and we were just wondering
if we could ask you a few questions. Like, maybe what exactly happened? What’s
his current condition? Anything you’re willing to give us.” He held a
microphone in my face as the cameraman lifted a different camera onto his
shoulder to film me.
Rage shot through me like a
bullet shoots out of a gun.
“You want anything I’m willing to
give you?” I asked coldly. “Well, I’m going to give you ten seconds to get that
motherfucking camera out of my face before I shove that mic up your ass.”
“Uh . . .” he
stammered. “We won’t keep you for long. We just want a quick statement.”
Without hesitation, I took three
steps and grabbed the camera from the guy behind him, lifted it above my head,
and smashed it on the concrete. They both jumped back, their mouths hanging
open as they stared at the ground.
“There!” I pointed to the
shattered camera as I walked away. “There’s your fucking statement.”
Beth Ehemann lives in the northern suburbs of Chicago with her husband and four children. When she’s not sitting in front of her computer writing, or on Pinterest, she loves reading, photography, martinis and all things Chicago Cubs. She’s represented by Jessica Watterson of the Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency.