Book Review: The House of the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune

Title: The House in the Cerulean Sea

Author: T.J. Klune

Published by: Tor Books

Publishing date:  March 17th 2020

Pages: 393 

Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.

When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he’s given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.

But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.

Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

If you want to read a book that will warm your heart, The House in the Cerulean Sea is the perfect choice! The best word to sum up this book is hopeful: hopeful that things can get better, hopeful that prejudice won’t win and hopeful that just one person can make a difference in many lives.

This book explores the idea that prejudice keeps growing and wins when people, who have the privilege of not being affected by prejudice, stay silent and live comfortably in their bubbles without making an effort to question and challenge the status quo, without advocating for those who may not be able to advocate for themselves and without fighting for the changes that will allow them to be their own advocates.

The way it explores these themes is through a society where there’s a lot of prejudice against magical beings and there’s a whole system that regulates, segregates, and excludes them. The concept of this book is fascinating and well-executed. This book particularly focuses on very special children that are magical in some way. These children are kept separated in orphanages where no one ever gets adopted or schools where no one cares for them. The protagonist of this book is a caseworker for the Department in Charge of Magical Youths (DICOMY), who goes to these orphanages and makes sure the children are in a safe environment and while doing so, he has to remain objective and detached. 

And that’s where the magic of this book truly begins, with Linus, the main character. He is very set in his ways, he follows the rules, he’s very anxious about a lot of things, he cares deeply for the well being of the kids and there’s an emptiness in him that he tries to ignore. He’s actually very endearing once you get to know him. It is quickly established that Linus does his job well, he keeps his distance, he is objective and he doesn’t question if the situation these kids are in is right. Once his job is done, he doesn’t check on the kids he meets in the orphanages and he never knows what happens to them after his visit.

The problem is that his lastest assignment requires him to spend an entire month in one of the orphanages. There he meets a group of very special kids, a wise but not entirely nice sprite and the mysterious, sweet, smart man who runs the orphanage. Once he spends time with them and gets to know them, staying distant and objective is not as easy as it used to be. Linus’ character development in this book is phenomenal, and slowly seeing him grow throughout the book, seeing him let go of the rules and understand that the status quo is harmful, is so rewarding

Beyond Linus, the children are the absolute stars of this book. They are cute, funny, lovable and so compelling. Each one has a defined personality and all of them are three-dimensional characters. They all have faced prejudice, sadness, rejection, cruelty, loneliness and they each have their own defense mechanisms because of it. This book does a great job of showing how Linus learns to see beyond those defense mechanisms and how the kids worm their way into his heart and, at the same time, it shows how Linus has to work to earn the kid’s trust and love. In the end, the relationship between Linus and the kids ended up being my favorite part of the book

And then there’s Arthur, the man who runs the orphanage, who is smart, kind, compassionate, and very mysterious. His relationship with Linus is heartwarming and I’m glad we get a male/male romance in a fantasy book. They are both so tentative and sweet. The only thing I will mention is that I wish there were a few more instances of the two of them interacting and connecting, I think it would have made the romance better. Still, it was adorable.

If you want to rest from dark fantasy books and want something that will make you feel happy and hopeful, while still asking tough questions about privilege, prejudice and complacency, I totally recommend this book!

Have you read this book? Did you enjoy it? Do you agree with my opinion?
Add me on

Goodreads Bloglovin Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox

Book Review: We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal

Title: We Hunt the Flame

Author: Hafsah Faizal

Series: Sands of Arawiya #1

Published by: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Publishing date:  May 14th 2019

Pages: 472 

Zafira is the Hunter, disguising herself as a man when she braves the cursed forest of the Arz to feed her people. Nasir is the Prince of Death, assassinating those foolish enough to defy his autocratic father, the king. If Zafira was exposed as a girl, all of her achievements would be rejected; if Nasir displayed his compassion, his father would punish him in the most brutal of ways. Both are legends in the kingdom of Arawiya—but neither wants to be.

War is brewing, and the Arz sweeps closer with each passing day, engulfing the land in shadow. When Zafira embarks on a quest to uncover a lost artifact that can restore magic to her suffering world and stop the Arz, Nasir is sent by the king on a similar mission: retrieve the artifact and kill the Hunter. But an ancient evil stirs as their journey unfolds—and the prize they seek may pose a threat greater than either can imagine.

Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

After finishing We Hunt the Flame, I was left with an overall feeling of having read a funentertaining, quick book. I enjoyed my reading experience. Nonetheless, when I think about the different elements of the story, the truth is that I had issues with a lot of things. So I’m in a weird position, where this review may sound negative but my feelings about this book are not. I’m actually looking forward to reading the next book in the series when it comes out.

The start of this book was so promising, I was gripped from the very first page because the author introduced a mysterious, creepy forest which was a very big part of the first few chapters and I was very intrigued by it. The problem was that the amazing set up of the forest was wasted, it was not used at all in the story and something very convenient happened involving the forest that made its existence feel pointless. That was a common problem with this book, the author included interesting concepts or elements to the story, but then it felt like she didn’t know what to do with them, so she did nothing or she did something but it wasn’t well executed.

In terms of the plot, this book hinged on the fact that the characters had to go to an island that was supposed to be this scary, dark place full of evil creatures, and honestly, it wasn’t as creepy or as atmospheric as I was expecting it to be or as the forest in the first chapters of the book was. The author included a lot of fascinating Arabic-inspired mythological creatures, but they didn’t feel as necessary parts of the story, it felt more like she had added them on top of the plot and not like they were integrated to the plot. I wish these creatures played a bigger and more important role in the story because they added a unique feeling to it. Also, when it came to the plot, the twists were predictable, the foreshadowing was heavy-handed and a lot of convenient things happened at the end.

We Hunt the Flame is told in dual point of view; the main characters are Nasir, who was a prince and an assassin and who suffered abuse since he was a child; and Zafira, who was a huntress that fed her village but she had to pretend to be a man because of the sexists’ beliefs in her kingdom. At the start of the book, each perspective felt captivating and necessary because they were showing different parts of the world this book takes place in and different pieces of information from the same puzzle. Nonetheless, as the book progressed and the characters met, the dual perspectives didn’t work as well because the two characters were too similar in personality and both of them were living the same situations.

While the main characters faced a lot of obstacles and challenges while they were on the island, the tension wasn’t there, I was never scared for them. This may have something to do with the fact that, while I liked the characters, I wasn’t very invested in them or what happened to them. Even when bad things happened I couldn’t muster any emotion about it.

Nonetheless, I liked the dynamic between the group of characters and I liked the friendship that was born between all of them. There were 5 characters in the group and they were all very different: there was a flirty, relax but mysterious character, a wise mediator, a moody prince/assassin, a distrustful huntress, and a warrior type. The author did a good job of establishing who each character was without making them a caricature, but it felt like the author forgot the warrior character was there most of the time and only remember when she needed this character to fight or to save the day in pretty big ways.

The romance in this book felt so forced and it mainly consisted of the two characters staring at each other from afar for the entire book. I didn’t felt the connection or the chemistry between the characters. And then there was a big problem with queerbaiting in this book, it happened twice with two different relationships and honestly, there was one relationship in particular between Zafira and her best friend that would have made such a better romance.

Overall, I had a lot of issues with this book, but it wasn’t a bad book. It was a fun and quick read, and it had so much potential, that’s why I’m reading the sequel, I want to see if the author manages to execute well some of her brilliant ideas.

Have you read this book? What did you think about it? Do you agree with my opinion?
Add me on

Goodreads Bloglovin Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox

Reviewing 2020 Romance Books: Something to Talk About, The Marriage Game & The Change Up

Hi everyone! Recently I read 3 romance books that came out in the last couple of months and today I want to share my reviews for them. While I overall enjoyed these books, I did notice that my problems with all 3 of them were related to the way the big conflict in the story was handled, which I found interesting. If you have read any of these books, let me know if you also had a problem with the conflict!

Without further ado, here are my reviews:

*Click the titles to go to the Goodreads page*

Something to Talk About by Meryl Wilsner

This book is about a showrunner and her assistant, who give the world something to talk about when they accidentally fuel the ridiculous rumor that they are dating, but as they spend more time together because of work, they realize the rumor might not be so off base after all.

I went into this book with a lot of hesitation because I had seen very mixed reviews, but from the very first page I enjoyed both of the main characters and their relationship. I could feel the connection and tension between them and I shipped them so hard. I think the power dynamics, since the main characters were an assistant and her boss, were handled well and the author kept the discussions about it present throughout the book. This is a very slow slow-burn romance and it dragged a little bit, but overall I think it worked really well.

The background of the story was the entertainment business – award shows, paparazzi, writing a tv show, producing a tv show- and it added a fun element to the story. This book dealt with sexual harrasment in Hollywood and I think it did a very good job with that as well. Also, the secondary characters were great and I’m hoping there’s another book in this series with Jo’s best friend.

My main issue with this book was the conflict. I think Emma overreacted to something and I thought it was gonna be one of those “I know it doesn’t make sense, but I’m hurt by it” situations, which I would have undertood and found relatable, but no, she was very mad about it and I feel like she acted very unprofessionally because of it and that whole conflict dragged even when it was kind of silly.

Overall, I still really liked the main characters and their relationship.

The Marriage Game by Sara Desai

Desai, S: Marriage Game: Amazon.es: Desai, Sara: Libros en idiomas ...

This book is about an aspiring entrepreneur and a ruthless CEO, who make a wager to see who gets to keep the office that they accidentally end up sharing. The wager involves helping her finding a husband through a series of blind dates that her father arranged. But when the battle for the office becomes a battle of the heart, Sam and Layla have to decide if this is love or just a game.

I liked the main characters in this book, Sam and Layla. She was passionate, impulsive and caring and even when Sam was a bit of an ass at times, he is willing to do anything for the people he cares about.

The concept of the blind dates her dad set up was really interesting and I enjoyed the fact that Sam ended up going on those dates with her and they get to know each other and start liking each other during her dates with these terrible guys, which were very funny to read about. In those moments, I really liked Sam and Layla together and I could see their chemistry. Nonetheless, this book suffers from an issue that I have noticed in a few romance books lately and it’s that it only shows very little glimpses of the characters getting to know and starting to like each other, and then it makes reference to the fact that more has happened between them and their relationship has grown to be stronger. But since I was only told about it and didn’t see it happen, I didn’t feel as invested in their relationship.

I enjoyed the way this book incorporated Indian culture and I really liked how much her family is part of this book. I wish this book showed more of his family because I love complicated family dynamics and I think it would have added a lot to the story and to his character.

My main problem with this book is the fact that the hero messed up in a huge way and I didn’t feel like he tried to be forgiven at all, he didn’t made an effort, he didn’t had to grovel and he barely apologized.

Overall, even when I wasn’t completly invested in the relationship, I was enjoying this book quite a bit but the resolution to the conflict left me feeling disappointed.

The Change Up by Meghan Quinn

Cover Reveal: The Change Up by Meghan Quinn | Candi Kane PR

In this book, The Bad Boy of Baseball falls in love with his best friend after inviting her to live with him so she can accomplish one of her dreams.

I love friends to lovers stories and this one was so good on that front. I could definitely feel the chemistry and tension between the main characters from the start and I enjoyed seeing the way their relationship developed. Also, they had such a cute dog! For the most part, I liked the main characters. Maddox liked his privacy and routine, he was a bit grumpy, while Kinsley was friendly to everyone and she was VERY passionate about the environment and animal. The only thing that annoyed me a little bit is that the heroine cried ALL THE TIME, everything made her cry.

This book did a good job of showing the awkward moments of moving in with someone, even if it’s your best friend, and it also did a good job of portraining healthy conversations about boundaires and also the necessary conversations when those boundaries are not respected.

My main issue with this book was that the conflict at the end, which was related to the hero’s anger management issues. Something very unrealistic happened and he treats the heroine REALLY badly out of anger and doesn’t believe her explanation. While I did liked the apology and the groveling in this book, I do think that his anger management issues are not deal with, they simply disappeared and that’s not very realistic or a healthy thing to portrait. Also, it really bugged me that he doesn’t believe her until someone else shows him proof of what truly happened (proof btw that was so unrealistic).

Overall, I mostly enjoyed this one and I totally recommend it for fans of friends to lovers romances.

Have you read any of these books? Are you planning on reading any of them? What romance books have you enjoyed lately?
Add me on

Goodreads Bloglovin Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox

Juneteenth + Blackout Buddy Read: Let’s talk about White Rage by Carol Anderson

Hi everyone! Today is Juneteenth and I thought it was a good day to talk about a book I read recently for the Blackout Buddy Read hosted by Book with Shae, about the unspoken truths and the hidden history of the racial problem in America. The buddy read has been taking place from June 1st until today and there’s a liveshow hosted by Black booktubers that you should check out today where they are gonna be talking about two books: White Rage and White Privilege.

As someone who is not from the United States, I didn’t learn about Juneteenth in school or college or anywhere really, until I learned about it online. If you don’t know much about it, here’s a thread of the history of Juneteenth that a Black woman wrote on Twitter:

Also, before talking about the book, here are a few resources to support anti-racist efforts that you should check out:

White Rage: The Unspoken Truths of Our Racial Divide by Carol Anderson

White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide - Kindle ...

From the Civil War to our combustible present, acclaimed historian Carol Anderson reframes our continuing conversation about race, chronicling the powerful forces opposed to black progress in America.

As Ferguson, Missouri, erupted in August 2014, and media commentators across the ideological spectrum referred to the angry response of African Americans as “black rage,” historian Carol Anderson wrote a remarkable op-ed in the Washington Post showing that this was, instead, “white rage at work. With so much attention on the flames,” she writes, “everyone had ignored the kindling.”

Since 1865 and the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment, every time African Americans have made advances towards full participation in our democracy, white reaction has fueled a deliberate and relentless rollback of their gains. The end of the Civil War and Reconstruction was greeted with the Black Codes and Jim Crow; the Supreme Court’s landmark 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision was met with the shutting down of public schools throughout the South while taxpayer dollars financed segregated white private schools; the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965 triggered a coded but powerful response, the so-called Southern Strategy and the War on Drugs that disenfranchised millions of African Americans while propelling presidents Nixon and Reagan into the White House.

Carefully linking these and other historical flashpoints when social progress for African Americans was countered by deliberate and cleverly crafted opposition, Anderson pulls back the veil that has long covered actions made in the name of protecting democracy, fiscal responsibility, or protection against fraud, rendering visible the long lineage of white rage. Compelling and dramatic in the unimpeachable history it relates, White Rage will add an important new dimension to the national conversation about race in America. 

Goodreads | Book Depository | Indie Bound

Carol Anderson starts White Rage explaining in the first couple of pages what she means by the term white rage and it’s such a clear and smart concept:

“White rage is not about visible violence, but rather it works its way through the courts, the legislatures, and a range of government bureaucracies. It wreaks havoc subtly, almost imperceptibly. Too imperceptibly, certainly, for a nation consistently drawn to the spectacular- to what it can see”

“The trigger for white rage, inevitably, is black advancement. It is not the mere presence of Black people that it’s the problem; rather, it is blackness with ambition, with drive, with purpose, with aspirations, and with demands for full and equal citizenship. It is blackness that refuses to accept subjugation, to give up”

After stating the driving concept of her book in such a concise and masterly way, Anderson, who is a historian, goes on to show how white rage has manifested throughout American history after important moments that are considered big “wins” for Black people and how they have esencially undermined and invalidaded those triumphs. Anderson shows this with so many historical details, there are examples of national ocurrences and also individual cases of normal people and it is both brilliant and exhausting. I kept thinking while reading this book that if I was exhausted of reading about all the roadblocks and schemes that white people have pulled, I couldn’t imagine living through it and living with the consequences of it.

“The truth is, white rage has undermined democracy, warped the Constitution, weakened the nation’s ability to compete economically, squandered billions of dollars on baseless incarceration, rendered an entire region sick, poor, and woefully undereducated, and left cities nothing less than decimated. All this havoc has been wreaked simply because African Americans wanted to work, get an education, live in decent communities, raise their families, and vote. Because they were unwilling to take no for an answer.”

White rage is defenitely not an easy read, it’s frustrating, infuriating and disheartening, but it’s such an important book. Knowing this part of history, knowing and understanding the things that have been done and the lengths white people have been willing to go to is essential to not allowing it to happen again. I also think that it’s important that this book tries to end on a positive and hopeful note, because it is in our hands as a society to stop white supremacy and we can’t forget it.

Overall, this was eye-opening and as someone who isn’t from the United States, I found the history lesson fascinating and exhausting at the same time.

Have you read this book? Have you read any nonfiction books about race that you would recommend?
Add me on

Goodreads Bloglovin Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox

5 Amazing Self-Published Romance Books

Hi everyone! I think it’s not a secret for anyone that follows this blog that I read A LOT of romance and recently I was curious about whether I was reading more traditional published, indie published or self-published romance books. I don’t actually pay attention to that when I pick books (at least when it comes to romance), to me it’s all the same and it turns out I read basically the same amount of traditional and indie published books, and even when I read a little less self-published books, the difference is not very significant.

Since I don’t usually pay attention to which books are self published, I don’t know if I tent to enjoy them less, more or the same amount as trad or indie books. And since I know self-published books often get a bad rep or are thought as “less good than” traditionally published books, I thought I would read 5 self-published books that were on my tbr and I would let you know how I felt about them. Spoiler alert: I really liked all of them and I even have a new favorite romance!!

Without further ado, here are the books in the order I read them:

A Gentleman in the Street by Alisha Rai

The main characters in this book were step siblings for a year when they were already grown ups who didn’t live with their parents and, since the beginning and still years later, their relationship has been filled with sexual tension, which has made them both pretend to not like each other to avoid revealing how they much want each other.

This book is SO STEAMY!! One of the steamiest romance novels I have read. The main characters have so much chemestry and such a captivating dynamic of bickering and fighting and pretending they don’t like each other. The hero’s family plays a big role in this book, since he finished raising his siblings, and the exploration of his relationship with them is well done and it adds a great element to the book.

One of the best part of this story is how incredibly sex positive it is. The heroine, who is japanese and bisexual, hosts sex parties and things get wild and she has found a community of people who enjoy the same things as her and don’t judge each other. Also, the hero who has always tried to repress the things he wants sexually, comes to terms with them and stops feeling ashamed, which I think sends a very powerful message.

The Blind Date Diaries by Branda St. John Brown

This book is definitely my least favorite out of all of them, but it was still good. The premise of this book is really interesting, the heroine works for a magazine and to save it from having to go digital, she agrees to go on blind dates with guys that the readers vote for and write about it, but for the first date her boss has to chose the guy and she chooses her son, who the heroine hates.

At the beginning, I didn’t like the main characters and I didn’t understand why they were so antagonistic and defensive towards each other. But the dynamic between them changed as they got to know each other and I ended up actually enjoying their relationship. They were sweet together and they had chemistry. Also, there’s a grand gesture in this book that was very sweet and it worked perfectly with the premise of the story.

My main complain with this is that they only hanged out like 3 times and even when the hero liked the heroine since before, I still think it’s way too fast to say that they fell in love by the end of the book.

Only When It’s Us by Chloe Liese

This is my favorite out of all of this books and it’s a new favorite romance for me. This book revolves around a female soccer star and her lumberjack  college classmate, who after a bad first impression have to work together on a project and quickly realize that they don’t actually hate each other, they are just destined to be frenemies.

This book was fantastic. It took me a couple chapters before I started to like Willa, but I ended up really admiring her strenght, dedication, loyalty and her vulnerability. It was cool to see a female character being the one playing a sport and being great at it, and while the storyline with her mom was devastating, it added so much to the story. On the other hand, I liked Ryder from the very first time he appeared on the page and I loved his storyline so much, his life changed drastically a couple years before the book starts after an illness and I wasn’t expecting his emotional and powerful journey. It gave this book depth and a unique element.

Willa and Ryder have a frenemies to lovers, slow burn, angsty and emotional romance that I absolutely loved. The pranks, the bickering, the fighting, the trust, how caring they were, made their realtionship fascinating. There’s a bit of lack of communication but I could defenitely understand why both characters were being reserved since they have very big, difficult things happening in their lives. Honestly, there are so many elements that made this a highly emotional book and it ended up making me cry, which very rarely happens.

I really liked all the secondary characters, specially Ryder’s family, and I can’t wait it read the next book in the series, which will be about one Ryder’s brothers.

The Billionaire’s Fake Fiancée by Annika Martin

This book is about a Billionaire who needs to have a more family friendly image for a client, to do it he needs a fake fiancée and he wants someone too annoying to tempt him, so his team ends up hiring his hairdresser to pretend to be his fianceé because she is everything he thinks he doesn’t want.

I had a hard time with the beginning of this book because I didn’t like the heroine, but as the book went on I discovered that there was so much more to Tabitha beyond the first impression and I ended up really liking her as a character. There was so much depth to her, she was understading, compationate, smart, observant and kind. Her obssesion with soap operas was pretty funny and the role it plays in this book was very cleverly done. I wasn’t expecting to have a soap opera worthy plot, but it was really fun.

This book has a grumpy/sunshine romance, it includes fake dating and forced proximity, which are all things that I love. The characters had so much chemestry, I slowly fell in love with their dynamic and I ended up really enjoying their relationship. Tabitha brought out a less serious, less asshole-y version of Rex and he saw beyond her happy, positive facade.

Xeni by Rebekah Weatherspoon

This is book tells the story of Xeni and Mason, who are left money in the will of Xeni’s aunt but to claim it they have to get married to each other and since both of them need the money they decide to do it. They had no plans to actually fall in love, but things don’t go as they expected.

The main characters in this book are both adorable, Xeni has a tendency of blurting out everything she likes about Mason when he’s around her and Mason does magic, cooks, plays the bagpipes  and like a 100 other instruments, and it’s so understanding and caring with Xeni. Also, Mason is a bisexual fat Scotsman and Xeni is a bisexual Black woman.

This book handled instant attraction very well and it didn’t become insta-love. Xeni and Mason had so much chemestry and they opened up to each other and were vulnerable with each other in a way that was very sweet to read about. Honestly, they were so cute together. And there were some very steamy scenes!

Do you read self- published books? Have you read any of the books I mentioned? Are you planning on reading them?
Add me on

Goodreads Bloglovin Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox

Mini Reviews: 5 May 2020 Romance Releases

Hi everyone! I went ahead and read a bunch of romance books that came out this month, May 2020, and I’m reviewing them for you today. Without further ado, here are my thoughts on these 5 romance releases:

Beach Read by Emily Henry

A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge where they switch genres and fall in love.

It took me a little bit to get into this book, but I ended up truly enjoing it. This was a lot more emotional and darker than I was expecting, while still being a rom-com. I loved the main characters in this and I really enjoyed seeing them grow throughout the story and learn from the different ways each of them sees and understands the world. The development of their relationship was great and the tension between them kept me captivating the whole time. I’m a big fan of complicated family dynamics and I really liked the way this explored family and grief, as well as family secrets and lies. Also, the writing was amazing.

Recommended for: fans of The Hating Game! Mainly because the main characters in Beach Read really reminded me of the main characters in The Hating Game, but also because both have hate to love romances.

The Trouble with Hating You by Sajni Patel

A woman, whose traditional Indian father is trying to arrage her marriage even when she refuses, is deceived into meeting her sutor and it goes terrible wrong and then they see each other again because they both work for the same company and they start to fall for each other.

It took me a while to get into this book, at the beginning the main character Liya was so rude than I couldn’t understand why Jay liked her and I was so frustrated with her. He had his moments where he was rude too but it was after she was rude to him for no reason. The point is that the beginning was rough, but their relationship started to change, Jay was so patient and kind and I started to love their banter. The whole hate to love, slow-burn romance made sense for these characters and I got really invested in their relationship. Also, I loved Liya relationship with her friends and I loved Jay’s family and how welcoming of Liya they were.

This book gave so many emotions because I HATED some of the characters and I was so frustrated with the gossiping, cruel people in this book, but at the same time I was swooning over Jay and I felt so much sympathy for Liya and I just had all the feels, especially since this book ended up dealing with darker topics like sexual assault and domestic violence.

Recommend for: fans of The Right Swipe by Alisha Rai! If you liked The Right Swipe but you wished the heroine was a little less guarded or that she open up more throughout the book, you’ll like Liya’s journey in The Trouble with Hating You.

Unforgettable by Melanie Harlow

Two friends from high school, who have a complicated connection to each other, reunite after 18 years of ups and downs in their lives, and start falling in love.

Unforgettable is the fifth and final book of the Cloverleigh Farm and it can be read as a standalone. This book pleaseantly surprised me and it ended up being probably my favorite of the series. This is a very emotional book about reconnecting, facing past choices and letting go of guilt. I loved the relationship between the main characters and I liked the fact that while the past was discussed and it influenced the relationship, it didn’t define it, the main characters still fell in love and built their relationship in the present. Another thing I really loved about tis book was the positive representation of adoption.

Recommended for: I think fans of the Winstons Brothers Series by Penny Reid would also like the Cloverleigh Farms Series, since both series tell the love stories of a group of siblings in a small town.

Wylde by Sawyer Bennett

A playboy hocke player falls for a bookstore owner, who wants to stay away from the spotlight and doesn’t want anything to do with him, but he is up for the challenge.

Wylde is book 7 in the Arizona Vengeance Series, but it can be read as a standalone. This book was good even if it was not my favorite from the series. I loved the hero in this book, he was nice and patient and caring, unfortunately, I didn’t love the heroine, she was a very judgemental. Nonetheless, the couple was cute together even if not very memorable. One of my main problems with this is that the “she’s not like other girls” idea was present in this book and I don’t undertand why in 2020 we still have to see that in books.

Moreover, I think the conflict in this story could have been handled better, because while the female character overreacted a little and she apologized for that, the truth is that the hero did screw up (even if he had the best intentions) and he never recognizes that or apologizes for it. So I feel that while she took responsability for her mistakes, he did not. It wasn’t a super big deal, but it still bugged me.

Recommend for: I think fans of the Brooklyn Bruisers series by Sarina Bowen would also really enjoyed the Arizona Vengaence Series. Both series are about Hockey Romances and they are both really enjoyable.

Meet Cute Club by Jack Harbon

A man who runs a romance book club in a small town feels like the club is losing its steam, so when the bookshop’s new employee – who he doesn’t like – says he wants to join the club and help bring it back, he can’t refuse and then he discover that the other guy may not be as bad as he thought.

Unfortunately, I was so disappointed by this book. It took me a long time to get into this and I never actually manage to get completely into it. The writing was flat, I was bored and the characters were two-dimentional. Also, this book switched viewpoints without warning or any king of indication that it had happened, sometimes the same scene switched from one pov to another and back again, which was confusing. But I have to admit that there were some cute moments and the steamy scenes were actually really good. The gay rep in this book is #ownvoices.

Recommend for: fans of The Melody of You and Me by M. Hollis! I didn’t love Hollis’ book either, but so many of my friends loved that book and I feel like it would be the same with Meet Cute Club. It’s a matter of taste and if you don’t pay too much attention to writing style, I think you can enjoy this one!

Have you read any of the books I mentioned? Are you planning on reading them?

Add me on

Goodreads Bloglovin Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox

Mini Reviews: The Boyfriend Project by Farrah Rochon + Girl Gone Viral by Alisha Rai

Hi everyone! Today I have mini reviews of a couple of romance books I read recently: one that just came out and another that will be out soon. Without further ado, here are my thoughts on them:

The Boyfriend Project by Farrah Rochon

(Release date: June  9th 2020)

Samiah Brooks never thought she would be “that” girl. But a live tweet of a horrific date just revealed the painful truth: she’s been catfished by a three-timing jerk of a boyfriend. Suddenly Samiah-along with his two other “girlfriends,” London and Taylor-have gone viral online. Now the three new besties are making a pact to spend the next six months investing in themselves. No men, no dating, and no worrying about their relationship status . . .

For once Samiah is putting herself first, and that includes finally developing the app she’s always dreamed of creating. Which is the exact moment she meets the deliciously sexy, honey-eyed Daniel Collins at work. What are the chances? When it comes to love, there’s no such thing as a coincidence. But is Daniel really boyfriend material or is he maybe just a little too good to be true?

Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

I really liked Samiah, the main character in this book, she is a smart, hard-working and successful woman working in a tech company, which is a very white and male environment. This book did a good job of showing all the hardships that she, as a black woman, faces in STEM and how those hardships are different than the ones faced by other people of color like the love interest, Daniel, who is part-Korean and part-Black.

Samiah’s relationship with the two women that she meets at the start of the book when they all find out they were dating the same guy without knowing it, was the highlight of the book. Their support for one another and their unconditional friendship were things I really enjoyed reading about. And the first 10% of this book when they all find out the truth was hilarious and maybe my favorite part of this book.

My main problem with this book was that so many moments between the main characters when they are getting to know each other and start flirting and liking each other happened off page and I was so frustrated! I’m reading a romance book, I obviously want to see them fall in love, I don’t want to be told that they fell in love in all this little moments that I didn’t get to read about. Also, the fact that he lied to her for almost 90% of this book didn’t sit well with me.

Despite not loving the romance in this book, I loved the female friendship so much that I will read the rest of the series to get the other two women’s love stories.

Girl Gone Viral by Alisha Rai

(Release date:  April 21st 2020)

One minute, Katrina King’s enjoying an innocent conversation with a hot guy at a coffee shop; the next, a stranger has live-tweeted the entire episode with a romantic meet-cute spin and #CafeBae is the new hashtag-du-jour. The problem? Katrina craves a low-profile life, and going viral threatens the peaceful world she’s painstakingly built. Besides, #CafeBae isn’t the man she’s hungry for…

With the internet on the hunt for the identity of #CuteCafeGirl, Jas Singh, bodyguard, friend, and possessor of the most beautiful eyebrows Katrina’s ever seen, comes to the rescue and whisks her away to his family’s home. Alone in a remote setting with the object of her affections? It’s a recipe for romance. But after a long dating dry spell, Katrina isn’t sure she can trust her instincts when it comes to love—even if Jas’ every look says he wants to be more than just her bodyguard…

Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

I went into this book with low expectations after liking but not loving the first book in the series, The Right Swipe. Thankfully, I enjoyed this book more than the first. Girl Gone Viral has two sweet, kind main characters – Katrina and Jas – and I loved them both and I really enjoyed their slow burn romance. I was really glad that Alisha Rai didn’t feel the need to use miscomunication as a plot device, there were two big moments were miscomunication could have been used to create more drama and angst, but it wasn’t, the characters actually talked to each other and expressed their feelings and concerns.

Most of this book takes place in Jas family farm and because of it, his family is a big part of the book and I really liked them as secondary characters and I enjoyed seeing the complex family dynamics and the conflicts between them and how they had to learn to communicate better and how their relationship evolved. Besides the storyline of Jas and Katrina in the farm with his family, this book had subplots revolving each character – the going viral storyline and the trial/pardon storyline – which I didn’t find interesting and so I was glad those were small parts of the book and at the end I liked the way they were both resolved.

Have you read any of these books? Are you planning on reading them? What good romance books have you read lately?
Add me on
Goodreads | Bloglovin | Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox

ARC Review: Incendiary by Zoraida Córdova

Title: Incendiary

Author: Zoraida Córdova

Series: Hollow Crown #1

Published by: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers 

Publishing date:  April 28th 2020

Pages: 384 

Renata Convida was a child when she was kidnapped by the King’s Justice & brought to the luxurious palace of Andalucia. As a Robari, the rarest & most feared of the magical Moria, Renata’s ability to steal memories from royal enemies enabled the King’s Wrath, a siege that resulted in the deaths of thousands of her own people.

Now Renata is one of the Whispers, rebel spies working against the crown and helping the remaining Moria escape the kingdom bent on their destruction. The Whispers may have rescued Renata from the palace years ago, but she cannot escape their mistrust and hatred–or the overpowering memories of the hundreds of souls she turned “hollow” during her time in the palace.

When Dez, the commander of her unit, is taken captive by the notorious Sangrado Prince, Renata will do anything to save the boy whose love makes her place among the Whispers bearable. But a disastrous rescue attempt means Renata must return to the palace under cover and complete Dez’s top secret mission. Can Renata convince her former captors that she remains loyal, even as she burns for vengeance against the brutal, enigmatic prince? Her life and the fate of the Moria depend on it.

But returning to the palace stirs childhood memories long locked away. As Renata grows more deeply embedded in the politics of the royal court, she uncovers a secret in her past that could change the entire fate of the kingdom–and end the war that has cost her everything.

Goodreads | Amazon | Books Depository

Incendiary has an intricate magic system, vivid characters, twist and turns that will keep you at the edge of your sit and an ending that will leave you wanting more. Can you tell I loved this book? that’s because I really, really did.

Renata, the main character of Incendiary, is a fascinating character. She is not the strongest, the smartest or the most cunning, she is a normal girl that has to deal with a complicated past and with powerful abilities that make her be needed and feared and hated at the same time. The way she deals with her trauma and her guilty, and especially the way her self-recrimination affects her relationships with others and colors all her interactions feels completelly realistic. All the secondary characters are intriguing, especially since it’s hard to know which role are they playing in the large scheme of things. It truly feels like no one in this book can be trusted, which helps build the tension throughout the story.

As a background to these characters, there’s a kingdom and a culture inspired by the Spanish Inquisition, which gives this story a very rich and complex setting and history. In this kingdom, there are characters that are like judges and they are tasked with defending their belief system by eradicating anyone who threatens it. In this case, they believe that the Moria, which are the people with magic abilities in this world, are a threat and they have to be wiped out. The magic of the Moria is fascinating and unique with different types of powers, metals that make them more poweful and special stone that stores memories. It’s unusual to find magic systems that are intricate and interesting and at the same time manage to be easy to understand, but this book delivers just that.

One of the stronger aspects of this story is that it feels like like something bad is about to happen at any moment, Renata is living in the midst of enemies while trying to save her people and enact revange but there are so many secrets and interests at play that the whole book feels like mystery that Renata and the reader have to solve. This tension and sense of danger that build throughot the book are the testament of the excellent writing, which it’s fluid and captivating and it goes well with the fast pace of the story.

Finally, to top all of that off, this book is full of twists and turns and while they are really shocking, there are enough clues throughout the book that it doesn’t feel like the twists come out of nowhere. And the ending is full of truths and revelations that will leave wishing you had the second book in your hands right away.

Are you planning on reading this book? Does it sound like something you would enjoy? Have you read any other book by this author?
Add me on
Goodreads | Bloglovin | Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox

ARC Review: Island Affair by Priscilla Oliveras

Title: Island Affair

Author: Priscilla Oliveras

Series: Keys to Love #1

Published by: Kensington Publishing Corp

Publishing date:   April 28th 2020

Pages: 352

Sought-after social media influencer Sara Vance, in recovery from an eating disorder, is coming into her own, with a potential career expansion on the horizon. Despite the good news, her successful siblings (and their perfect spouses) have a way of making her feel like the odd one out. So, when her unreliable boyfriend is a no-show for a Florida family vacation, Sara recruits Luis Navarro—a firefighter paramedic and dive captain willing to play the part of her smitten fiancé . . .

Luis’s big Cuban familia has been in Key West for generations, and his quiet strength feeds off the island’s laidback style. Though guarded after a deep betrayal, he’ll always help someone in need—especially a spunky beauty with a surprising knowledge of Spanish curse words. Soon, he and Sara have memorized their “how we met” story and are immersed in family dinners, bike tours, private snorkeling trips . . . sharing secrets, and slow, melting kisses. But when it’s time for Sara to return home, will their island romance last or fade with the stunning sunset?

Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher via Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

Island Affair is the start of a promising and unapologetically Latinx romance series set in Key West and revolving around a group of siblings and their love stories. This first book not only has a sweet romance between two characters with lots of chemistry, it also deals with important subjects like eating disorders, mental health and life threating illness.

From the very beginning of Island Affair, the main characters have so much chemistry, the physical attraction is evident and that works really well with the fake dating trope. Also, this book includes the ‘there’s only one bed’ scenario, which is one of my favorite parts when it comes to the fake dating trope and I really enjoyed seeing it be a part of this story. Moreover, I had so much fun watching Luis charm Sara’s family and get along with them so well even if he did have to survive their interrogation. While it took me some time to actually buy into Luis and Sara’s romantic relationship beyond the physical aspect, they won me over by the end and I was rooting for them to be together.

One of my favorite things about this book is how complicated family dynamics are at the center of the novel. Both main characters have painful histories with their families that affect them in different ways, and throughout this book they reflect about them and try to change the way they engage with their histories and families. I especially liked the development of Sara’s relationship with her family, how they learned to communicate a little better and to be more honest and understanding with each other. At the end, the way eveything was resolved was satyisfing, especially with her sister. I really liked Luis family as well: their banter, their nosiness and their unconditional support, and I’m looking forward to his siblings stories in the next books. But I felt like the resolution to his conflict with his brother was a bit rushed, I’m hoping when we get his brother’s book there’s a bit more about them rebuilding their relationship.

The setting of this book is magical and it was so fun to read about these amazing places in Key West and I hope I can visit soon. Also, the food mentioned in this book made me hungry. Great food in books is always a plus. In terms of the writing, I’ll say that for the most part it is good but at the beginning I had issues with some word choices that didn’t feel natural and kept pulling me out of the story, but that aspect gets better as the story progresses.

If you like romance books that include big complicated families, I really think you will enjoy this one!

Are you planning to read this book? Do you have recommendations for romance books by Latinx authors?
Add me on
Goodreads | Bloglovin | Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox

ARC Review: Gotham High by Melissa de la Cruz & illustrated by Thomas Pitilli

Title: Gotham High

Author: Melissa de la Cruz

Published by: DC Ink

Publishing date:  April 7th 2020

Pages: 208

Before they became Batman, Catwoman, and The Joker, Bruce, Selina, and Jack were high schoolers who would do whatever it took–even destroy the ones they love–to satisfy their own motives.

After being kicked out of his boarding school, 16-year-old Bruce Wayne returns to Gotham City to find that nothing is as he left it. What once was his family home is now an empty husk, lonely but haunted by the memory of his parents’ murder. Selina Kyle, once the innocent girl next door, now rules over Gotham High School with a dangerous flair, aided by the class clown, Jack Napier. When a kidnapping rattles the school, Bruce seeks answers as the dark and troubled knight–but is he actually the pawn? Nothing is ever as it seems, especially at Gotham High, where the parties and romances are of the highest stakes … and where everyone is a suspect.

Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository | Indiebound

(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher via Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

Gotham High by Melissa de la Cruz is a book with an interesting and intriguing premise, the characters from the original Batman comics are teenagers and they are all in high school together. In the hands of Melissa de la Cruz, the beloved characacter are a bit different Bruce Wayne is half-Chinese and Selena (Catwoman) is Latinx. The addition of this diversity to the story is exciting and it makes it feel new and unique. All these great elements are complemented by the artwork, which is beautiful, dark and alluring, and suits the story really well.

Selena steals the show in this graphic novel because Bruce is not that interesting, he has no personality traits beside wanting to save everyone. Selena on the other hand is a really captivating character. Despite being kind of a terrible person- conniving, manipulative and a liar – Selena is still easy to sympathise with because she is desperate for a way to help her father who has Alzheimer and needs things they don’t have money for and that’s the reason she does so many questionable things. Also, she is an unreliable narrator which makes her really intriguing.

Beside Bruce and Selena, the other main character is Jack (Joker) who is in love with Selena and he stalks her. This element of the story wasn’t handled as well as it could have been. Some characters mentioned the fact that Jack is creepy throughout the story, but really the stalking wasn’t addressed beyond that and when Selena finds out about it, she doesn’t give it much importance and she seemed ok with it and I just think it was poorly handled. I think it was an attempt to make Jake look bad because he’s suppose to become this big bad guy and if it weren’t for the stalking, he would mostly be an ok kid who’s friends with the wrong people.

There’s a love triangle between Selena, Bruce and Jack, which I didn’t particulary enjoy. Selena is way too cool for either of them. But I liked how that situation was resolved. One relationship that I appreaciated was the frienship between Selena and Ivy (Poison Ivy), it was great to see two women who didn’t man ruin their friendship. It wasn’t that predominant in this graphic novel, but I would love to see that aspect explored more in the future.

Finally, one thing that this graphic novels does well is addressing the privilege that comes from having money and how different backgrounds shape people into what they need to be to survive. It wasn’t very subtle about it, but that was ok, because it’s an interesting subject to address.

Here are some outtakes that the publisher provided in case you want to see the artwork

Are you excited about this graphic novel? Are you planning on reading it?
Add me on
Goodreads | Bloglovin | Twitter  | Pinterest Letterbox