Search Results for: passion

Review: Passion and Pain by Kathy Petrakis

Passion and Pain final coverPassion and Pain (Dancers and Divas #1)
written by Kathy Petrakis
published by Antartis Publishers

find it here: Barnes & NobleAmazonSmashwordsGoodreads

Why did I pick this book: I participated in the blog tour hosted by the author, Kathy Petrakis, in June 2013. (I received a copy of this book for review purposes.)

Did I enjoy this book:
This book was alright. It didn’t blow me away but it kept me reading to see how it would end.

I was expecting Elena to be all about dance. I didn’t think she was going to be an all-around artist—dance, singing, acting. I would have preferred it if she were just focused on dance. I think the story would have been much better that way. I like to read books that center on the performing arts. It’s a world that is fascinating and interesting. I just wish that Elena hadn’t been in all of the arts. Dance is her thing and that’s what I wanted to read about when I picked up Passion and Pain. I know that a lot of dancers are also singers and actors. It was a bit hard to believe that she was so good at all three.

I enjoyed reading about the rehearsals and everything that Elena went through to prepare for her plays and dances. As I said, I find it fascinating and fun to read about it. Dance books are up there with skating books for me. I love to read them. However, I should have written the review as soon as I finished reading Passion and Pain because at this point, a few months later, I don’t remember much about it. It was an alright read, but not that memorable.

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Would I recommend it: I may recommend this book if you like Young Adult and performing arts. This is not a New Adult book but would not be suitable for anyone under the age of 15.

Will I read it again: I will not.

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About the book – from Goodreads: 
Does passion and desire guarantee success? Can friends really be trusted? Can true love be found beneath lust and deceit?

These are questions tenacious street dancer Elena Martinez faces as she struggles to compete against the most talented students at New York’s top Performing Arts High School. Along with her best friend, the carefree and mischievous Sebastien Duval, they are determined to make center stage.

But the singing diva Letitia has other plans. Beautiful, talented and popular, her desire for revenge could ruin everything for Elena and Sebastien. Now, they must fight against prejudice, treachery and deceit as Letitia sets out to destroy Elena’s friendships, her romance, her dignity and her dreams. Can Elena win the battle for true love, happiness and success?

 

Happy reading wherever you are and whenever you get a free chance!!!

 

Blog Tour: Passion and Pain by Kathy Petrakis (spotlight of books #1 & 2, giveaway)

Dancers and Divas BLOG TOUR banner

Passion and Pain final coverPassion and Pain (Dancers and Divas #1)
written by Kathy Petrakis
published by Antartis Publishers

find it here: Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Smashwords, Goodreads

About the book – from Goodreads: Does passion and desire guarantee success? Can friends really be trusted? Can true love be found beneath lust and deceit?

These are questions tenacious street dancer Elena Martinez faces as she struggles to compete against the most talented students at New York’s top Performing Arts High School. Along with her best friend, the carefree and mischievous Sebastien Duval, they are determined to make center stage.

But the singing diva Letitia has other plans. Beautiful, talented and popular, her desire for revenge could ruin everything for Elena and Sebastien. Now, they must fight against prejudice, treachery and deceit as Letitia sets out to destroy Elena’s friendships, her romance, her dignity and her dreams. Can Elena win the battle for true love, happiness and success?

Kathy Petrakis - color

Find Ms. Petrakis here: web, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, mailing list

 

And now for the GIVEAWAY!! Fill out the Rafflecopter form below for your chance to win!

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Happy reading wherever you are and whenever you get a free chance!!!

 

Blog Tour: Shadow by Colleen Oakes (Chrissy’s review)

 

Shadow (Wendy Darling, Vol. 3)
written by Colleen Oakes
published by SparkPress, 2017

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & Noble, Amazon, iBooks, WalmartBook Depository, Goodreads

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Did I enjoy this book? 
I really did. The Wendy Darling series is a fantastic series that gives a different glimpse into the Neverland world. You can read my reviews of Stars and Seas at the links provided.

I don’t want to spoil Stars and Seas, or Shadow for that matter, so my review will be on the vague side. Read those books, then this one. Seriously.

Shadow had me staying up WAY past my bedtime reading. I had to know how this story ended. The emotions were there, and dang it if Ms. Oakes didn’t have me tearing up again. (I’m telling you, I don’t cry during books, movies, etc. But man, this one had me misty-eyed just like Seas.) Seriously, I was on the edge of my seat. I was heartbroken. I was happy. I was every emotion at some point. Some questions were answered; some hopes were dashed.

Shadow is a fitting end to this fabulous Peter Pan retelling. Am I satisfied with the finale? Yes. Do I wish for more? Absolutely. But, sadly, all stories must end sometime.

 

 

Would I recommend it? Yes, but definitely read the first two books first. Seas is my favorite.

 

Chrissy

About the book: 
Wendy Darling has found herself once again in the arms of charming Peter Pan, the god-child who desires power above all things. This time, though, Wendy burns not with passion but with a secret: with Hook as her ally, she is there to defeat the evil that lies inside of Peter, the evil that holds all Neverland hostage—the Shadow.

To do this, Wendy must quietly undo Peter from inside his heart while at the same time convincing Tink to betray the twisted love that binds them together. This is a task made nearly impossible by the arrival of Booth, her sweetheart from London and a new pawn in Peter’s manipulative game—a boy whose heart she must break in order to save his life.

As all of Neverland prepares to fight, Wendy races to untangle Peter’s connection to the Shadow, a secret long buried in the Forsaken Garden. When the time comes, pirates, mermaids, Lost Boys, and the Darling family will all rise—but if Wendy can’t call the Shadow, they will all be destroyed by Peter’s dark soul. War has come to paradise, and Neverland will never be the same.

 

 

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Book Blogger Hop – July 7 – 13, 2017

About the Book Blogger Hop

The Book Blogger Hop was originally created by Jennifer from Crazy-For-Books in March 2010 and ended on December 31, 2012. With Jennifer’s permission, Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer relaunched the meme on February 15, 2013.

Each week the hop will start on a Friday and end on Thursday. There will be a weekly prompt featuring a book related question. The hop’s purpose is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

This week’s question:

In one sentence, describe your passion for reading. (submitted by Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer)

 

The best way I can describe my passion for reading is with the title of my blog: I read Every Free Chance I have.

 

I kind of want to do the buffalo sentence. Can I? Yeah, I totally can. Ready? Here we go!

Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.

 

How would you describe your passion for reading in one sentence?

 

Melissa’s Review: What We Leave Behind by Matthew Alan

What We Leave BehindWhat We Leave Behind
written by Matthew Alan
published by Createspace, 2014

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & Noble, AmazonBook Depository, Goodreads

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Did I enjoy this book: 
No, but in my defense I likely should not have tried to read it while on vacation.

SPOILERS AHEAD!

Here’s a synopsis: Jane undergoes scores of tragic, stereotypical events and becomes a strong, beautiful, selfless, wonderful, amazingly loving person with no flaws. Then, she dies. It’s depressingly predictable. Maybe if I’d have read this while PMSing after just having been dumped I might have enjoyed it more. Maybe.

Would I recommend it: No.

Melissa


About the book – from Goodreads: 
What We Leave Behind – A story about struggle, a story of hope, and mostly, a story about love. A journey with a unique young girl who is so sure of what is out there waiting for her, that she never compromises her belief in finding it. Jane Rawley Solomon’s humor, character, and passion for others, serve as a reminder that we choose our own path to happiness, regardless of the events that impact our lives.

 

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Chrissy’s Review: Kim vs. the Mean Girl by Meredith Schorr

Kim vs. the Mean Girl
written by Meredith Schorr
published by Meredith Schorr, 2017

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Book Depository, Goodreads

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Did I enjoy this book: 
I really did! It was a great YA prequel to Blogger Girl and Novelista Girl. I read it every free chance I had and finished it in about a day.

I liked learning about Kim and Hannah when they were in high school. It puts the relationship between Kim and Hannah in the other books into perspective. In fact, I think I liked Kim vs. the Mean Girl more because I read the adult Kim and Hannah stories first.

 

Would I recommend it: I would, especially if you have read Blogger Girl and Novelista Girl.

 

Chrissy


About the book – from Goodreads: 
High school sophomore, Kim Long, is no stranger to the “mean girl” antics of Queen Bee Hannah Marshak. When Hannah steals Kim’s diary and in front of the entire class reads personal (not to mention humiliating) entries Kim wrote about her crush, Jonathan, Kim vows to enact revenge.

Kim and her loyal best friend, Bridget, come up with the perfect plan to put the evil Hannah in her place once and for all. But will their scheming have the desired effect of getting even, or will Hannah emerge more celebrated by her peers than ever?

Kim vs. The Mean Girl can be read as a young adult standalone novel, but it is also a prequel to the popular Blogger Girl adult romantic comedy series and is set in 2000. Told in the duo perspectives of teenage Kim and Hannah, fans of the series will get an inside look into Kim’s early passion for reading, writing (and Jonathan) and find out why Hannah is so darn mean.

“In Blogger Girl we meet the irrepressible Kim Long and her nemesis Hannah Marshak. Kim Vs. the Mean Girl takes us back to high school with Kim and Hannah 101 in this delightful prequel. I gobbled it up in one byte…er, I mean bite (this is the era before a cell phone was in every backpack). When Kim declares war on Hannah, it takes some unexpected, and at times amusing, turns, and though the enemies don’t emerge as friends, or even frenemies, they each come away the better for it. A fun read for all ages.” Eileen Goudge, New York Times best-selling author.

 

 

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Chrissy’s Review: Save the Date by Aven Ellis

Save the Date (Chicago on Ice #3)
written by Aven Ellis
published by Soulmate Publishing, 2017

find it here: (affiliate links) Amazon, Goodreads

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Did I enjoy this book? 
Of course I did! It’s an Aven Ellis book! Seriously, this author has yet to disappoint me.

Save the Date is another fun, sweet, romantic hockey romance. Collins Brady is an event planner who dreams of working with horses and riders. Luca Ballerini is the new Chicago Buffaloes goalie who has a work ethic many rookies do not possess. When they find each other, Collins and Luca are a great match. From the beginning, their chemistry was evident. Of course, there were some ups and downs, but their story will make you swoon.

Would I recommend it? Absolutely!

Chrissy


About the book – from Goodreads: 
Chicago event planner Collins Brady knows how to make the magic happen for her clients. From elaborate weddings to cute baby showers, Collins knows what to do to make an experience breathtakingly perfect. In her mind, she adds the sparkle that makes everything shine.

If only she had that same sparkle in her personal life.

While she’s good at her job, her true career dreams lie elsewhere. If she could do anything, it would be to become an equestrian riding instructor. That dream, however, is shelved due to practicality. And that’s not the only thing Collins has shelved. After ending a relationship with her college sweetheart, Collins has taken her heart out of the game, too. She wonders if that magical kind of love can exist. But maybe it’s only a fantasy.

Or is it? All of that changes the night she meets Luca Ballerini, the rookie goalie for the Chicago Buffaloes. Passionate and fiercely determined, Luca has only made time for hockey in his life—until he meets Collins. Her spark hasn’t escaped him, and now Luca wants something other than his hockey career.

But following their dreams and hearts isn’t always easy. Can Collins and Luca find a way to live their dreams with each other?

Will love get past them? Or will this goalie make a perfect save of Collins’ heart?

 

 

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Melissa’s Review: Kept In The Dark by J. Ronald M. York

Kept in the DarkKept In The Dark
written by J. Ronald M. York
published by St. Broadway Press, LLC, 2016

find it here: (affiliate links) Barnes & Noble, AmazoniBooksBook Depository, Goodreads

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Did I enjoy this book: 
This book is complicated, and not just because of the subject matter. I’ll try to be succinct.

Mr. York is a brave man to shout his family’s dirty secrets so loudly, and I applaud his courage. It must be heartbreaking and frustrating to have such important questions go unanswered, and I hope writing this book gives him a bit of the peace I’m sure he’s seeking.

However.

It’s often difficult to draw the line between what you are passionate about and what makes a good story, and while I mean no disrespect to Mr. York, his family, or the people he writes about, as an avid reader I have a few concerns. This story is riveting; I know why Mr. York wanted to tell it. His delivery, though, leaves me a bit disappointed. It must have been difficult for him to sift through his parents’ letters and choose the ones he thought most pertinent, but I think York’s narrative is a much better (and more interesting) perspective for this story. I would love to see this book reworked: York’s narrative interspersed with powerful quotes from the letters rather than the bulk of the letters themselves. Barring that (and hopefully this is a problem I experienced because I was given an Advanced Reading Copy), the letters ought to at least switch fonts with each writer. It’s a more distinct difference, and it would help a lot with those of us who tend to skip over headers and chapter numbers while reading. I would also have appreciated the character description at the beginning of the book so I could easily refer back to it.

I don’t know what to say about the subject matter. I want to say it would make a great movie, but I’m afraid that’s insensitive. I want to (and don’t want to) know the details of what happened so I can draw my own conclusions. The fifties were not kind to the LGBTQ. Is this an excuse? No. Could it be an explanation? Yes. On the other hand, molesting children is never, ever, EVER okay. I don’t know, and will never know, what actually happened, and so I feel some sense of the frustration Mr. York must deal with daily. This is not a happy story, but not every good story is.

 

Would I recommend it: I honestly don’t know.

 

Melissa

 

About the book – from Goodreads: The jail was located on the top 9 floors of the Dade County Courthouse in downtown Miami. The young father could look down from the 21st floor, to the street below. His wife and child would come each night, stand on the sidewalk and wave to him. They would flash the car lights to signal they were there and he, in return, would strike a match from his window to let them know he was watching. Although separated by just a few miles, they were only able to see each other each Sunday, for 2 hours, through glass and wire. Writing letters became their way of communicating and 100 letters were exchanged during an 8-week period.

This was a secret my parents, family and a few close friends took to their graves. No one ever told me and I was too young to remember. And yet, a box containing the letters, yellowed newspaper clippings, faded photographs and cards of encouragement from friends was left for me after everyone was gone.

Although the crime took place more than 60 years ago, it is still as current as today’s headlines. After much thought and reflection, I am ready to share this story. Controversial and uncomfortable, it is still deeply rooted in unwavering love. A horrific mistake was made leaving a family to heal, rebuild their lives and hopefully, forgive.

 

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Chrissy’s Review: Mixing It Up by Tracie Banister

Mixing It Up
written by Tracie Banister
published by Tracie Banister, 2016

find it here: (affiliate links) Amazon, Goodreads

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Did I enjoy this book: 
I have really enjoyed Ms. Banister’s books, so I was really excited to read Mixing It Up. It was a fun read!

Cecily Sinclair is a successful TV chef and is entering a new phase of her career . . . with a co-star, the insufferable yet dashing Italian chef Dante Marchetti. These two have amazing on-camera chemistry. And let’s not forget the station’s new CEO, Devlin Hayes. He’s handsome, smart, and willing to take some risks.

The food is well researched. Ms. Banister describes the meals and dishes with great detail. You will definitely be hungry while reading this book. I know I was! The relationships are all different and interesting. I love the two male leads, but I think my favorite relationship was between Cecily and her cousin, Dina. They have a great relationship–one that is more like sisters than cousins. They are so different from one another but so close to each other.

This book is definitely filled with some heat, some good food, and some great romance!

 

Would I recommend it: Sure! But definitely read her other books, too! =) (You can check out my reviews here: In Need of Therapy and Twin Piques.)

 

Chrissy


About the book – from Goodreads: 
Born with a silver spoon in her mouth, Manhattan upper-cruster Cecily Sinclair now uses that pricey utensil to dish up fancy French fare on her cooking show, Serving Romance. When there’s an executive shake-up at the network, she’s not worried. Not much anyway. Her show’s a hit after all. Why would the new CEO want to mess with success?

The driving force behind several buzzed-about networks, Devlin Hayes is considered to be a wunderkind in the television industry. Although his plans to rebrand CuisineTV and make Serving Romance more Millennial-friendly don’t thrill Cecily, her charming, blue-eyed boss is a hard man to say “no” to and she really wants to keep her job—even if that means sharing screen time with a loathsome blast from her past.

Mercurial Italian chef Dante Marchetti a.k.a. “Il Duce” was once Cecily’s boss, and she has the PTSD to prove it. Now the owner of one of the hottest restaurants in town, Dante’s egomania knows no bounds and his constant attempts to provoke and upstage Cecily make her want to conk him on the head with a sauté pan. She thinks they’re toxic together, but viewers love their chemistry and clamor for more.

As Cecily battles to maintain the integrity of her show, she finds herself scheming and manipulating right along with Dante and Devlin. Is she fighting a lost cause? Does she really belong on TV, or would her culinary talent be better served elsewhere? And could one of the men who makes Cecily’s blood boil ignite a passion in her for something other than food?

 

 

About the author: An avid reader and writer, Tracie Banister has been scribbling stories since she was a child, most of them featuring feisty heroines with complicated love lives like her favorite fictional protagonist Scarlett O’Hara. Her work was first seen on the stage of her elementary school, where her 4th grade class performed an original holiday play she penned. (Like all good divas-in-the-making, she also starred in and tried to direct the production.)

Tracie’s dreams of authorial success were put on the backburner when she reached adulthood and discovered that she needed a “real” job in order to pay her bills. Her career as personal assistant to a local entrepreneur lasted for 12 years. When it ended, she decided to follow her bliss and dedicate herself to writing full-time. Mixing It Up is her fourth Chick Lit release, and in it Tracie finally got to live out her fantasy of being a Cordon Bleu-trained chef.

Find Ms. Banister here: blog, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Goodreads, Newsletter – The Banister Buzz

 

 

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Chrissy’s Review: Sugar and Ice by Aven Ellis

Sugar and Ice (Rinkside in the Rockies #1)
written by Aven Ellis
published by RJM Publishing, 2016

find it here: (affiliate links) Amazon, Goodreads

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Did I enjoy this book: 
I loved it. Of course I did. I read it every free chance I had. I didn’t want to put it down!

Josephine is a baker who loves her job testing recipes for Bake It! Magazine, but she’s looking for more. Cade is a forward for the Denver Mountain Lions hockey team with a reputation for being fierce. They are both passionate about their jobs, and when they meet due to a faulty oven, sparks fly. Ms. Ellis knows how to write a relationship that will make you happy and giddy and hope for the two main characters to find their happily ever after. I just smiled and giggled and did a few happy dances throughout this story. It is one of my favorites from Ms. Ellis. Truly.

I can’t wait for the next Rinkside in the Rockies book!

 

 

Would I recommend it: Do you have to ask? Of course! Read it! Read every book by Ms. Ellis. =)

 

Chrissy

 

About the book – from Goodreads: Sugar and Ice is the first full-length novel in the Rinkside in the Rockies Series by Aven Ellis!

Josephine Rossi has recovered from a broken heart, but has vowed that she’s all about the desserts now as a recipe tester for Bake It! Magazine. Cheesecake never breaks your heart. Unless it cracks on the top, but still, it tastes amazing if you bake it just right. She knows what to do in the kitchen as far as making luscious desserts. Men? Apparently she’s not so good at figuring them out, so she refuses to bother. Josephine knows it is safer to stay in the kitchen than to take another chance with her heart.

Denver Mountain Lions forward Cade Callahan is passionate about hockey, but is also about finding love. He thought he had it once, but a disastrous romance last holiday season has him keeping his heart in check. While he’s fearless on the ice, he’s guarded with his heart. Cade is determined history won’t repeat itself again. He won’t let his guard down until he’s certain he’s met The One.

However, Cupid’s arrow might just strike when these two least expect it. When an oven goes out, and a cheesecake for testing has to be baked, and Cade just happens to live in the same building with a working oven…Well, things other than cheesecake might just heat up in the kitchen. Can these two passionate people learn to trust their hearts again? Can love override fear for Josephine and Cade? And will they find the combination of sugar and ice is the sweetest one of all?

 

 

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