Monday, February 20, 2012

Pride and Princesses By Summer Day

     This wasn’t as much of a modern Pride and Prejudice as I thought it was going to be. There was an element of Pride and Prejudice and a little of Emma (more like Clueless) but it was also a story of its own.
     Best friends,Phoebe and Mouche, are juniors at Sunrise Performing Arts High School, and are tired of unromantic boys who show no interest in wooing a girl. The girls decide to write a guide they call The Boy-Rating Diary. They have read all these old dating and beauty guides called Mrs Robinson’s Advice, Sophia’s Pathway to Beauty and How to please your Potential Husband, to name a few (I love the titles of these guides and the quotes sprinkled through out the story!). They have come up with a set of rules for dating. As part of their “research” they go on practice dates and compare notes. The object of the diary is to create a dating manual for teenage girls.
     While writing the rules for the manual, The Dating Game is created. To win the game you have to get asked to the prom by Mark Knightley!
     Mark Knightley is hot, rich, arrogant, quiet and misunderstood by the girls. His best friend is Jet Campbell, who is also hot, easy going, always smiling and very likable. Joel Goodman is a good-looking smooth talker and not to be trusted. Do these characters remind you of anyone?
     The Princesses (a group of mean girls) find out about the game and want to play. Phoebe and Mouche let them in on the game but don’t share all their secrets.
     The competition drives a wedge between Phoebe and Mouche and they learn about friendships and what is more important than winning.
     It was really a good story with a surprising ending, one that I didn’t see coming. Unfortunately, I felt it was a bit scattered, the story didn’t flow well. I would have to stop sometimes and back track a little to figure out what was going on. It is for this reason I give this a 3 star rating instead of a 4.

3 out of 5 stars

Buy a copy of Pride and Princesses here.

Have you read it? What did you think? I would love to hear from you!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Kissed in Paris By Juliette Sobanet

     I loved, loved, loved this story! It is a fast-paced romance that I would highly recommend.
     When event planner, Chloe Turner, wakes up in her hotel room in Paris with nothing but a skimpy red dress (not her own), high heels, her underclothes, and a vague memory of the night before, she is in big trouble! Her wedding is in six days, how is she is supposed to fly home with no passport or money? Even her engagement ring is missing! To make matters worse, the police are questioning her over some suspicious activity going on in her bank account. Chloe, who is normally very organized, in control, and ready for any disaster, finds herself in a situation she has no control over!
     Julien, a undercover agent, persuades Chloe to go with him. Chloe follows Julien around Paris, evading the police looking for Claude to get her passport back so she can go home. She starts to wonder if she made the right decision, can she really trust Julien? Why is she having these feelings for Julien when she is engaged to Paul? And how is she going to explain all this to Paul? She just keeps getting in deeper and deeper! 
     From the very beginning of this story it took off and kept going! I didn’t know who to believe. I loved Chloe! She kept on trying to figure out how to get out of the mess she was in. All the while she was tired, confused and her feet hurt from the only shoes she had; high heels! 
     I loved the prologue! It was written as a series of emails between Chloe, her sisters and her boss. It is very telling of her, her relationship with her sisters and her fiance.
     I also spotted Charlotte and Luc from Sleeping With Paris! They make a cameo appearance. What fun! I love it when an author gives you a peek at their previous characters!

    Kissed in Paris is a fabulous read, and I think you'll enjoy it as much as I did! I just love the cover, too! 

     I can't wait to read Juliette Sobanet's next novel! You can read my review for her first novel, Sleeping With Paris right here.

I give this 5 out of 5 stars.

Buy a copy of Kissed in Paris here. 

About the Author:

      Juliette Sobanet is a graduate of Georgetown University and New York University in France, and she has lived and studied in both Paris and Lyon. She is currently a French professor in the Washington, DC area where she lives with her husband and their two massive cats. When she's not writing, she's eating chocolate, practicing yoga, or scheming on when she can travel back to France. Visit Juliette's website at

Please, feel free to leave a comment. I would love to hear your thoughts!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Captain Wentworth Home from the Sea By Mary Lydon Simonsen

     I tell you, you cannot go wrong reading one of Mary’s books! She always amazes me with her creativity, wit and her knowledge of history. In this book, there is not so much history, but a lovely story that made me feel good the whole way through!
     Captain Wentworth, who has no memory of Anne due to a head injury, returns with his sister and her husband who have let Kellynch Hall.  Anne’s father, Sir Walter, has left Anne at Kellynch Hall to help the Crofts get settled. During this time, Anne and Captain Wentworth get to know each other again. Anne has never stopped loving him, but can love find its way back into his heart again? 
     I love that Anne gets a second chance, but as Captain Wentworth’s memory starts coming back, will Anne’s happiness be jeopardized? 
     I really felt for Anne as her father treats her like a servant, but I’m glad she begins to make decisions based on what is good for her and not be persuaded by her family and friends.
     I adored this variation! I couldn’t put it down! It’s a good thing it is a novella and I was able to finish it in one sitting! 

I give this 5 out of 5 stars!

Buy Captain Wentworth Home From the Sea here.

This completes the Variations category of the Jane Austen Spinoffs 2012 Reading Challenge.
That's 2 of the 8 categories.

About the Author:

     Mary Simonsen has been writing Jane Austen re-imaginings in her head for thirty years. She finally put pen to paper in 2006 and published her first novel, Searching for Pemberley with Sourcebooks. Since that time, she has been as busy as a bee writing stories with tie-ins to Austen’s novels for Sourcebooks as well as self-published titles, including her latest, Becoming Elizabeth Darcy. Her favorite Austen title: a tie between Persuasion and Pride and Prejudice. Mary is a wife, mother, grandmother, and fanatical recycler. She lives in Arizona.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Awake By Jessica Grey

I was so excited to have the opportunity to read an ARC of Awake! I truly enjoyed every minute of it! 
What would happen if after more than 800 years had passed, Sleeping Beauty was kissed by the wrong person? And what if that person switched places with Sleeping Beauty?
Alex, Becca and Luke are interning at the Gem and Mineral Museum for the summer when a new exhibit comes in. In the exhibit is this beautiful bed encrusted with gems. Alex arrives early to the museum and finds Luke sleeping in the bed! Sitting on a crate nearby is a Princess! It turns out the Princess, Lilia de la Foret, has been sleeping in the bed for nearly 900 years! Luke and Lilia have switched places! Alex, Becca and Lilia band together to figure out how to break the spell and free Luke!
Grey paints a vivid picture of magic working in unison with nature. It’s an enchanting adventure of courage, self-discovery and friendship. The story is woven together with humor, mystery and true love. Grey was also able to stir in me those feelings you get during a first kiss! *sign*
I adore how Luke always tries to protect Alex, even while he is asleep. He is the strong silent type, not pushy but always there when you need him!
I loved this story! 

5 out of 5 stars.

Buy a copy of Awake here.

ARC provided by author.

About the Author:

Jessica Grey is an author, fairytale believer, baseball lover, and recovering Star Wars fangirl.  A life-long Californian, she now lives in Montana with her husband, Edward, and two children, Maddie and James, where she spends her time writing, perfecting the fine art of toddler-wrangling, and drinking way too much caffeine.

You can find Jessica online at and

Comments are always welcome!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Death Benefits By J. W. Becton

     I’ve been looking forward to reading Death Benefits, Becton’s second book in her Southern Fraud Thriller series and here it is! Hurray! After reading Absolute Liability I was hooked! You can read my review for that here.
     On this case, Julia and Vincent are together again, investigating a death benefits claim. The deceased is Theodore Vanderbilt, his body has been badly burn in a car accident.  But something’s not right here and red flags are going up everywhere. Vincent and Julia are sent out to investigate. Along the way they stumble into other crimes and find themselves in some dangerous situations.
     I like the way Becton slips in a few chapters from the criminal’s point of view, without letting us know who it is. She also adds interesting characters into the mix! Who wouldn’t like the feisty Mrs. Twilley; she’s a hoot!
     I’m also enjoying the continuing side story of Julia’s personal investigation to find her sister’s rapist. It’s interesting to see what the affects of rape has done to Tricia and the rest of the family. 
     Death Benefits is an action packed thriller that puts you on an exciting path of strange twists and turns that had me wondering what was going to happen next!  It’s a great whodunit, but with just enough physical attraction between Julia and Vincent to keep the romantic in me happy!
     Another fantastic story! Now, I can’t wait until the next one At Fault. That should be out sometime this year! I can’t get enough of Vincent!   #MarkVincentfangirl 
     I give this 5 out of 5 stars! 
     ARC provided by the author.

     Buy a copy of Death Benefits here.

About the Author:

     J. W. Becton (a pseudo-pseudonym for historical fiction author Jennifer Becton) has worked for more than twelve years in the traditional publishing industry as a freelance writer, editor, and proofreader. Upon discovering the possibilities of the expanding ebook market, she created Whiteley Press, an independent publishing house that has sold more than 55,000 books since 2010. Absolute Liability, the first in the six-book Southern Fraud Thriller series, became an Amazon Kindle Best Seller and made the Indie Reader Best Seller list for three nonconsecutive weeks, and At Fault (Southern Fraud 3) will be out in 2012.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Sleeping With Paris By Juliette Sobanet

     Charlotte Summer is about to live her dream; marry a wonderful man who loves her, live in Paris and study at Sorbonne University. 
     Two days before their big move to Paris, Charlotte finds out her fiancĂ© has been cheating on her. Upset and heartbroken, she goes on to Paris by herself. This isn’t the first man to cheat on her and as a result she decides she is never going to be hurt like that again. She is no longer going to get involved in a relationship, she is going to have fun and date like a man! She begins a blog “Sleeping With Paris, a Girls’ Guide to Dating like a Man in the City of Love”
     Her plan is to just have fun, have sex with no commitment, and blog about it along the way. She gets quite a large following, women who can sympathize with her. But can she really do that, date like a man?
     One of the guys she casually dates is her neighbor, Luc. She meets him on her first day there, coming out of the communal shower in the building were she lives. On her blog she calls him Half-Naked French Hottie.  Oh, I fell in love with him!
     I really liked this story! We spend almost a year and a half with Charlotte. She goes through many emotions, makes new friends and discovers something really important, herself.  I was not always happy with her decisions, in fact I found myself yelling at Charlotte, “You’re screwing this up!” (Don’t you love it when you’re so into a story you start talking to the character?) But it is through these mistakes that she finds herself, and love.
     I give this a 5 out of 5 stars.
     On a side note: I really want one of those croissants filled with the melted, dark chocolate! Yum!

Buy a copy of Sleeping With Paris here.

About the Author:

      Juliette Sobanet is a graduate of Georgetown University and New York University in France, and she has lived and studied in both Paris and Lyon. She is currently a French professor in the Washington, DC area where she lives with her husband and their two massive cats. When she's not writing, she's eating chocolate, practicing yoga, or scheming on when she can travel back to France. Visit Juliette's website at

     Comments are always welcome!

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