NA Romance, Reviews, ya romance

Book Review: Take Me On by Katie McGarry


Goodreads Summary:

Champion kickboxer Haley swore she’d never set foot in the ring again after one tragic night. But then the guy she can’t stop thinking about accepts a mixed martial arts fight in her honor. Suddenly, Haley has to train West Young. All attitude, West is everything Haley promised herself she’d stay away from. Yet he won’t last five seconds in the ring without her help.

West is keeping a big secret from Haley. About who he really is. But helping her-fighting for her-is a shot at redemption. Especially since it’s his fault his family is falling apart. He can’t change the past, but maybe he can change Haley’s future.

Hayley and West have agreed to keep their relationship strictly in the ring. But as an unexpected bond forms between them and attraction mocks their best intentions, they’ll face their darkest fears and discover love is worth fighting for.

My Initial Thoughts:

The only thing I can tell you is that I knew I was going to love it. Why? Because I basically love everything Ms. McGarry writes. It’s like written in stone by now. 🙂


Wes. That adorable boy. He infuriated me a lot, but I forgive him for it. I’ll be honest, I wasn’t so fond of him in Crash Into You because of what he did then, but now after knowing his background story I can at least understand. I don’t know what exactly Katie McGarry does, but she makes me fall in love with every single one of her male protagonists. Seriously. It’s like magic or something.

I really liked Haley. I don’t think Wes could have found a better match. I loved that she was independent and kicked butt all on her own. I love it when we have female protagonists that can take care of themselves. I think what I loved the most about Haley was that she was willing to leave Wes behind to do what she had to do. Often we see a ton of female protagonists leave it all for the guy and honestly, I don’t think that’s good. A relationship is made of two people, not one if you know what I mean. Both people compromise, not just the girl. Okay, let me get off my soapbox.

I’ve been writing this review for almost 3 months now so I’ve forgotten a lot of what happened, but what has stayed with me was the development of Wes’ character. I can’t believe how much he changed from the richie rich guy in CIY to this new Wes at the end of TMO. (and one of the reasons why it has taken me almost 3 months to write this review was because I could not put into words how awesome this book was and honestly I still can’t, but dear gosh it was about darn time I did)

If you haven’t read Take Me On or any of the books in the Pushing The Limits companion series I suggest you do. It’s by far one of my favorites and you are seriously missing out.

Rating: 5/5

Editor Letter

The Horror of Falling Behind – Bookish Edition

*cue ominous music*

Today, I’m going to talk about something that is difficult for me to discuss because… I will be telling the whole world that I have failed at something. What have I failed at? ARC Reviewing. How bad is it? Pretty bad…

One of the best things of being a book blogger is the chance of receiving ARCs (Advanced Reading Copies). You feel elated when you’re approved or contacted. It’s like YES, I have done something right with my life, but at a certain point you start to get a little complacent and before you know it BOOM it’s happening. You are way way behind.

It’s such a horrible feeling to know that these authors and publishers are counting on you and you’ve failed them by not posting the reviews on time. For not reading the books. I feel super super guilty.

I hardly ever request ARC’s on like NetGalley unless I know I have time to read them. I’m very careful to see what I am requesting and if it is realistic that I will be able to do what I am telling them that I can do.

What’s your opinion on this matter? Do you feel guilty or brush it off?


Tuesday Meme

Top Five Favorite Classic Books

toptentuesday-1Thank you The Broke and The Bookish for creating this great meme!

Hey Hey Hey! I’m back! Sort of… Well I’m back as much as I can be back, but I’m here and that’s what counts (or at least that’s what I tell myself). This week we have Top Ten Five Favorite Classic Books and I wasn’t too sure I should do this, but I said why not!


1. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

I really hated being told what to read in school, but I did it anyways. One day, my freshman high school english teacher made us read this book and it was the first book of assigned reading I had ever enjoyed. I think it’s still my favorite modern classic to this day. I even bought my own personal copy.


2. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Yes, it’s dark and twisted. Yes, it’s a horrible example of what love and family is. The thing about this book though is that it’s addicting, it’s dark, and there is something there that makes you feel sympathy for the very twisted, selfish, and bitter characters. I think I also like it because it was the first old classic that I ever tackled on all my own when I was in high school. I was so proud of myself when I had finished it.


3. The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

This classic play is my favorite play of all time. I laughed when I read it the first time around and I was more than happy to write an essay about it.


4. Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

I read this in the 9th grade because I wanted to know what all the fuss was about. I actually really liked it. If I do remember correctly, it’s a sad book, but what counts is that I enjoyed it and have fond memories of it. On the list it goes.


5. Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell

In middle school and high school I was obsessed with dolphins. They were my favorite animal. If it had dolphins, I wanted it. I was browsing the library one day when I saw this book about dolphins and I snatched it before anyone else saw it and took it home. Over the next couple of days I was introduced to a type of writing I had never read before. When I try to remember this book, I remember parts of it in a foggy way. I just remember reading it and thinking to myself, “Wow, how can a book make me feel like I’m there with her, I can see the fog, and see the beach she sees.” Fourteen year old me thought it was crazy and cool. Island of the Blue Dolphins was the first classic I ever read.

What are some of your favorite classics?

Tuesday Meme

Top Ten Books That Should Be In Your Beach Bag


Thank you to The Brooke and The Bookish for creating this wonderful meme!

openroadsummer_hires_cover no quote.jpg

Open Road Summer is the perfect beach read because it has that wonderful summer feeling. This book will only enhance your beach experience.


You might start to see a trend, and that trend is that most of the books on my list are books you will experience happy gushy feelings over. Someday Maybe is not light, but it makes you feel all the feels. It’s sweet at times, it is heart-wrenching at other times. Overall, perfection.

When I go to the beach, I laze around for a while. I don’t automatically go in. I like to have an umbrella, break out the chips and drink, and read for a while first. This book is slow to start, but perfect for the beach because it will help you kill time in the morning before the beach scene intensifies. Or if you like to get in the water first, well then it’s the perfect book to kill time while you wait for everyone to leave at sundown.

This book makes me feel all the feels. Racing Savannah has a strong female character, a hot cowboy, and horse racing. It just makes me happy okay. READ IT!

Another book that makes you feel all the feels. This is one of my babies. I’ll cradle it and hold it. It’s the perfect companion at the beach.


This book might not be the best beach read because it will make you cry rivers, but I honestly think it would be a perfect beach read. A must in your beach bag.


The reason I am putting this in my beach bag/beach read is because… well Isaiah is hot. The beach is hot. If someone sees me blushing or getting a little hot no one will know it’s because of the book. They’ll just assume it’s because I’m at the beach. Muahahaha.6936382

Adorable. Cute. Loveable. Need I say more? No, I don’t think I do. READ IT!

amy-and-rogers-Epic-DetourThis is a book I think will be enchanted if read at the beach. It just has that summer lazy vibe. (Warning: lots and lots of feels and not all happy and gushy.)11071466This last book is a book that makes a lot of people cry. It’s bittersweet like chocolate. It’s good, we want it, but oh man does it hurt too. I’m all for reading emotional books at the beach because if you decide to face down, people will think you are taking a nap or tanning. No need to explain that you are a puddle of feels.

What are some of your must have in beach bag recommendations?


Alternate Reality Giveaway: Trivia Crossword Answers

Alternate Reality Giveaway

Welcome back to Day 2 of our giveaway! Today is our first “fun” post, and Kayla and I put together a crossword puzzle based on some of our favorite fantasy and paranormal books. (Honestly though, I had way more fun watching Kayla go a bit crazy while making the list.) Click here to be taken to Kayla’s blog, where she has the initial questions and puzzle for you to fill out. Don’t forget to have fun! We didn’t make them too hard. 😀

After you’re finished come back here and check out your answers and report your scores below!

AR Trivia Answers


  • 3) Audra’s first piece of food in years – Fries
  • 10) Starship Violet and Tarver meet on – Icarus
  • 12) Jack Force’s angelic name – Abbadon
  • 13) The _______ sing the praises of the truth, but they never tell you how much it costs.” – Candor
  • 14) Angel found in the Fairchild manor – Ithuriel
  • 15) Said “I suppose that now, I must become more than either.” – Tris
  • 16) Raffe’s true name – Raphael


  • 1) The original number of entries in The Testing (in numerals) – 108
  • 2) The true name of Eragon’s self-forged sword – Brisingr
  • 4) The Darkling’s symbol – Eclipse
  • 5) The mark Rose receives after the battle in Shadow Kiss – Zvezda
  • 6) The Shape of Zel’s DNA in Control – Infinite
  • 7) The Epic that killed David’s father – Steelheart
  • 8) Said this line: “Rose is in red, but never in blue, sharp as a thorn, fights like one too.” – Adrian
  • 9) Fruit Scarlet first gives Wolf – Tomato
  • 11) The politically correct term for the Bugger invaders in Ender’s Game – Formic

So how did you do? Comment below and let us know! And don’t forget to enter our giveaway!

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Alternate Reality Giveaway (March 15 – March 31)

Alternate Reality Giveaway

Hi guys! I’m excited to announce my first ever collaboration giveaway! I am doing this giveaway together with Kayla over at The Thousand Lives (she’s freaking awesome) and we have some good stuff for you all. If you haven’t followed her yet, click here so you can keep up with all of the awesomeness! 

Over the next two weeks, until March 31st, Kayla and I will be posting back and forth on our blogs, and working together on some posts as well that are all a part of this interactive giveaway. This giveaway was designed with our blog friends and readers in mind, giving you the opportunity to win free stuff, but also have fun at the same time!

If you haven’t guessed by the title on our lovely banner (which was created by Kayla, you guys go boost her ego cause I am not going to 😛 ), this giveaway’s theme is Alternate Realities, which is our blanket name for paranormal, fantasy, fairy tale, and post-apocaltypic tales. So if you’re a huge contemporary lover, consider this your entry level course into the unknown! And if you’re a huge fan of these genres, welcome to the club!

Our posts will be split two ways: discussion (code for: fangirling) and fun/interactive games. Kayla will be discussing fantasy books (angels and demons) and fairy tales reworks. I will be discussing all things that creep in the night (basically paranormal), and the post-apocalyptic stories that will make you extremely grateful you are an inhabitant of Earth. Once per week, Kayla and I will combine our efforts and have a bit of fun, and maybe most likely make fools of ourselves.

Schedule of Posts:

Monday 3/17 – Kayla discusses angels and demons, and spotlights our first giveaway book

Wednesday 3/19 – Alternate Reality trivia crossword puzzle!

Friday 3/21 – I will discuss paranormal novels, and feature our second giveaway book

Monday 3/24 – Kayla discusses the “fairy tales reworked” trend in YA right now, and features our third giveaway book

Wednesday 3/26 – Kayla and I will take a survey and comment on each others’ answers. Warning: the claws are coming out!

Friday 3/28 – I will discuss post-apocalyptic tales, and spotlight our final giveaway book

Monday 3/31 – Final wrap up, and announcing the giveaway winners!

And here is what you guys have been waiting for! THE PRIZES!

Grand Prize Winner:

1 $10 book of their choice

ARC of Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge

Paperback of Ignite by Erica Crouch

Runner Up Winner:

ARC of Her Dark Curiosity by Megan Shepherd

Paperback of Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer

BOTH winners will also receive a few extra goodies! I won’t spill all our secrets, but I can tell you that one of them is a mix CD made by Kayla which includes over four hours of music!

And now for the part no one ever really reads: The Rules.

You must be 13 years or older to enter.

All contestants under the age of 18 must have parental permission to enter.

All giveaway entries will be received through rafflecopter.

Book Giveaway ends March 29th, 2014 at 11:59pm USA Pacific Coast Time.

Book Giveaway is open to USA and Canada residents only!

There will be two winners, a Grand Prize Winner and a Runner Up Winner.

Winner will be announced and contacted on Monday March 31st, 2014.

Winners must respond within 48 hours of receiving, “You have won!” message.

New winner will be drawn if original winner has not responded within the 48 hour period.

Winner will be determined through the rafflecopter random generator.

You must trust us with your address or else, no book. Sorry!

You can enter below in the rafflecopter box/link, and make sure to come back for our follow up posts!

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Tuesday Meme

Top Ten New-To-Me Authors I Read In 2013

toptentuesdayThank you to the lovely people at The Broke and The Bookish for creating this wonderful meme.

Top Ten New-To-Me Authors I Read In 2013

1. Veronica Rossiauthor of Under The Never Sky

2. Shannon Messenger – author of Let The Sky Fall

3. Jessica Park – author of Flat Out Love

4. Jennifer L Armentrout – author of Obsidian

5. Rainbow Rowell – author of Fangirl

6. JoJo Moyes – author of Me Before You

7. Sarah J Mass – author of Throne of Glass

8. Alexandra Brackenauthor of The Darkest Minds

9. Gayle Forman – author of If I Stay

10. Elizabeth Norris – author of Unraveling


What amazing authors did you discover this year?



I was recently approved for several ARC’s on NetGalley and Edelwiness. I was so excited to see that I was approved for all of these books that I almost did a happy dance.

These are the ARC’s I received:

(Click on the image to go to its Goodreads page!)

PromiseofAmazing HC C 17258743 1113-9780373211050-bigw

Lot’s of good books!

I will be tackling Waterfell this week and I’ll post up a review of it soon!

Happy Reading,



Author Interview: Bev Stout

I recently read and reviewed Secrets of the Realm by Bev Stout. (You can check out my review here.) It was a great Young Adult Historical read, and here is my interview with the author where she talks about her book and characters (without any spoilers of course!) 🙂
Bev Stout
Bev Stout

What inspired you to write Secrets of the Realm?

Secrets of the Realm was a project I started for my family. It is a gift to them, something I hope they will pass on to each new generation.

Secrets of the Realm is set in 18th Century England. Have you ever had the opportunity to visit England (UK)?

No, but I did a lot of research to keep the story true to the era and location.

What type of research did you have to do in order to write Secrets of the Realm and its sequel, Return of the Realm?

After writing the rough draft of Secrets of the Realm, I then filled in the blanks. I researched all aspects of sailing and eighteenth century England that would be relevant to the story. To get the feel of actually being on a sailing ship, I explored the decks of a nineteenth century sailing ship moored in San Diego. The seasickness episode was gleaned from personal experiences of myself and a family member who will remain anonymous. It was not as dramatic as the scene in Secrets of the Realm.

Are there any plans for a book 3 in the Secrets of the Realm series?

There might very well be a third installment. It’s too early to say for sure.

When can we expect Return of the Realm to be published?

I’m shooting for the spring of 2014.

How did you choose Annie’s male name, Andres de la Cruz?

Andres de la Cruz was my great great grandfather. My husband thought I should not have an 18th century English girl’s mother be of Spanish descent. After I researched the fishing village I had chosen for Annie’s birthplace, I discovered its relationship with the Spanish Armada. I then knew my decision on Annie’s heritage, and using my great great grandfather’s name, would work.

Doc is such a sweet man once you get to know him, is he loosely based on someone you know in real life?

Doc is every tortured soul I have met, and will meet in my lifetime. He is that person who is unapproachable. But if you let yourself get to know him, you will be glad you did.

What made you decide that Chris would be lame?

Being lame, made Christopher the perfect character to be Annie’s best friend. They both managed to overcome the cruel hands that fate had dealt them.

As a fan of Captain Hawke, can we know why he seems to hire the “rejects” or those traditionally not hired to be sailors?

Not all of Captain Hawke’s crew members are rejects. Those who are, though, were hired because the captain sees potential in everyone. Captain Hawke knows first hand what it is like to be judged by society.

Which character in Secrets of the Realm would you most likely be friends with in real life?

That is a hard question. I love so many of my characters, even Symington! And as much as I admire Annie, she would be difficult to have as a friend. I’m a rule follower. She isn’t. Then, there’s Christopher. Let’s face it. How can you not love that boy? He has a big heart, and he finds joy in just being alive. It would be fun to be friends with Barrette, too. If I were able to keep myself from being distracted by his muscles, he would make me laugh a lot. Being friends with Captain Hawke would be an exciting experience. He has led such a colorful life for a man as young as he is. Oh, I have to pick just one. Okay, it would have to be Christopher.

In 140 characters, how would you summarize Secrets of the Realm?

Teenage girl faces adversity with unwavering spirit. In her quest to find her place in the world, she touches the lives of those she meets along the way. Don’t know if that is 140 characters or not, but it will have to do.

Can you give us any information without spoiling us on the Return of the Realm?

You can expect new adventures for Annie, but different than the ones she had encountered in the first book. New characters will be introduced in Return of the Realm. But as the title suggests, former characters will return, as well.

You can buy Secrets of the Realm at:
Amazon: Kindle or Paperback or Audiobook

A to Z Bookish Survey

AtoZsurvey-1017x1024I was looking through my reader dashboard on wordpress and I saw that Perpetual Page Turner (Jamie) had created this book survey. I saw this and I was like… why not? This looks like fun! 

Author you’ve read most books from:

Richelle Mead. 10 books.

Best Sequel Ever:

The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

Currently Reading:

Don’t Judge a Girl by Her Cover by Ally Carter

Drink of Choice While Reading:


E-reader or Physical Book?

Both. I own a Nook HD+ and I love it! I also love physical books, so really it depends on my mood.

Fictional Character You Probably Would Have Actually Dated In High School:

This is a hard one because I really don’t know, but if I had to think really hard I would say William Herondale. My weakness in high school was dark hair, light skin, tall guys. I think they might still be my weakness.

Glad You Gave This Book A Chance:

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare. After reading City of Bones, I had vowed to stay away from anything Cassandra Clare, but I decided to see if this trilogy was different and oh boy was it. I loved it.

Hidden Gem Book:

The Cupcake Queen by Heather Hepler

Important Moment in your Reading Life:

The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot is what really got me into reading. I was a 7th grader at the time, and I fell in love with the series.

Just Finished:

Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy by Ally Carter (I’m doing the Gallagher Girls Read-a-Thon, so there is a lot of Ally Carter in this survey.)

Kinds of Books You Won’t Read:

I won’t read New Adult Novels and Bi/Gay romance novels.

Longest Book You’ve Read:

The Beginning: Born At Midnight and Awake at Dawn by C.C. Hunter. 819 pages. 🙂

Major Hangover Because Of:

Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris (Such a good book, but aw man did it give me a hangover.)

Number of Bookcases You Own:

I guess I could say two, but I don’t really have “real” bookshelfs.

One Book You Have Read Multiple Times:

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

Preferred Place To Read:

The living room. The couch is so comfy.

Quote that inspires you/gives you all the feels from a book you’ve read:

“Outside, the ocean was crashing, waves hitting sand, then pulling back to sea. I thought of everything being washed away, again and again. We make such messes in this life, both accidentally and on purpose. But wiping the surface clean doesn’t really make anything neater. It just masks what is below. It’s only when you really dig down deep, go underground, that you can see who you really are.”

What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen

Reading Regret:

The Duff by Keplinger

Series You Started And Need To Finish(all books are out in series):

The Shadow Falls Series. (I’m still halfway through the 4th book. I can’t seem to pick it back up. I don’t want the series to end.)

Three Of You All-Time Favorite Books:

What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen

Perfect Scoundrels by Ally Carter

Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead

Unapologetic Fangirl For:

Richelle Mead. I met her back in May during her Gameboard of the gods Book Tour. I was nice and polite, even though internally I was thinking while I was staring at her “Where do you come up with all these wonderful stories… Can I look inside your brain so that I can know what happens with Bloodlines and GofG?!”

Very Excited For This Release More Than All The Others:

THE FIERY HEART by Richelle Mead

Worst Bookish Habit:

Leaving books open when I have to do something hence damaging the spine. Oops.

X Marks The Spot: Start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book:

Sophomore Switch by Abby McDonald

Your latest book purchase:

I bought four books on, a website that sells used books among other things. The four books I bought were Clockwork Angel, Ruby Red, Fixing Delilah, & Graceling. Oh and I bought Of Poseidon from the Barnes and Nobles Nook Store.

ZZZ-snatcher book (last book that kept you up WAY late):

The last book that made me lose sleep was Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry. I stayed up until 3am. 😀