Review: Select, by Marit Heisenberg

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Select by Marit Weisenberg
Published by Charlesbridge Teen on October 3, 2017 (expected)
Series: The Select, #1
Genre(s): fiction, fantasy, romance, science fiction, young adult
Format & Pages: e-book, 352
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Purchase at AmazonBarnes & Noble, Book Depository

Coming from a race of highly-evolved humans, Julia Jaynes has the perfect life. The perfect family. The perfect destiny. But there’s something rotten beneath the surface—dangerous secrets her father is keeping; abilities she was never meant to have; and an elite society of people determined to keep their talents hidden and who care nothing for the rest of humanity. So when Julia accidentally disrupts the Jaynes’ delicate anonymity, she’s banished to the one place meant to make her feel inferior: public high school.

Julia’s goal is to lay low and blend in. Then she meets him—John Ford, tennis prodigy, all-around good guy. When Julia discovers a knack for reading his mind, and also manipulating his life, school suddenly becomes a temporary escape from the cold grip of her manipulative father. But as Julia’s powers over John grow, so do her feelings. For the first time in her life, Julia begins to develop a sense of self, to question her restrictive upbringing and her family prejudices. She must decide: can a perfect love be worth more than a perfect life?

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Review: Win, by Vera Nazarian

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Win by Vera Nazarian
Published by Norilana Books on July 11, 2017
Series: The Atlantis Grail, #3
Genre(s): fiction, dystopia, fantasy, romance, science fiction, young adult
Format & Pages: e-book, 949
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The Games are Forever!
It’s one thing to Qualify and Compete…
Now she must Win.

Gwen Lark, nerd, geek, and awkward smart girl, is among the lucky ones. She’s one of several million teenage refugees to escape the extinction-level asteroid barreling towards Earth and reach the ancient colony planet of Atlantis.

But Atlantis is a strange new world with higher gravity and a blazing white sun, where nothing is as expected. The new arrivals from Earth will now belong to the majority class of non-citizens who face a lifetime of hard work and limited rights.

To make matters worse, Gwen’s rare and powerful talent […] is viewed as a potential weapon to be exploited by the Imperator, as well as a threat to the Kassiopei Imperial Dynasty and its uncompromising control over the people of Atlantis.

A last-minute heartbreak prior to arrival turns to joy, when Gwen receives a declaration of love from an unexpected source. The Wedding date is set, but before she can be joined with her true love, she is forced to compete in the brutal and deadly Games of the Atlantis Grail to save herself, her family, friends, and everything she cares about. Once again, her intelligence, quick thinking skills, resilience, and creativity are challenged to the breaking point.

The Games are monumental, intricate, lethal . . . and the Games are Forever.

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Book vs. Movie: Everything, Everything, by Nicola Yoon

Everything, Everything, by Nicola Yoon

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon
Published by Listening Library on September 1, 2015
Series: n/a
Genre(s): fiction, contemporary, romance, young adult
Format & Pages: audiobook
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My disease is as rare as it is famous. Basically, I’m allergic to the world. I don’t leave my house, have not left my house in seventeen years. The only people I ever see are my mom and my nurse, Carla.

But then one day, a moving truck arrives next door. I look out my window, and I see him. He’s tall, lean and wearing all black—black T-shirt, black jeans, black sneakers, and a black knit cap that covers his hair completely. He catches me looking and stares at me. I stare right back. His name is Olly.

Maybe we can’t predict the future, but we can predict some things. For example, I am certainly going to fall in love with Olly. It’s almost certainly going to be a disaster.

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Review: Ensnared, by Rita Stradling

Ensared, by Rita Stradling

Ensnared by Rita Stradling
Published by Kindle Press on May 23, 2017 (expected)
Series: n/a
Genre(s): fiction, new adult, romance, science fiction
Format & Pages: e-book, 380
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A Near Future Retelling of Beauty and the Beast 

Alainn’s father is not a bad man. He’s a genius and an inventor. When he’s hired to create the robot Rose, Alainn knows taking the money is a mistake.

Rose acts like a human. She looks exactly like Alainn. But, something in her comes out wrong.

To save her father from a five year prison sentence, Alainn takes Rose’s place. She says goodbye to the sun and goes to live in a tower no human is allowed to enter. She becomes the prisoner of a man no human is allowed to see.

Believing that a life of servitude lies ahead, Alainn finds a very different fate awaits her in the company of the strange, scarred recluse.

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Review: Faulty Bones, by J.M. Fraser

Faulty Bones, by J.M. Fraser

Faulty Bones by J.M Fraser
Published by Natalyn Press on December 19, 2016
Genre(s): fiction, fantasy, mystery, romance
Format & Pages: e-book, 242
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Destined love thwarted by a supernatural con game.

Two bankrupt card players, lured by black magic and a casino-chip counterfeiting scam, get lost within the folds of a world no longer true.

Faulty Bones follows the journey of Mike and Amy–a couple of restless drifters who misdirect their anchors to the shifty part of town. Can they overcome her gambling addiction and his tenuous grasp of reality to find their way back on the grid? A pair of scheming mobsters, a demonic con man, and a series of ripples in the sands of time won’t make the going easy.

Nothing proves to be as it seems in this novel, and that’s the essence of a good scam. Are you a clever enough detective to guess the secrets before they’re revealed?

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Review: The Thief, by Michele Hauf

The Thief, by Michele Hauf

The Thief by Michele Hauf
Published by Lyrical Press on April 11, 2017 (expected)
Genre(s): fiction, contemporary, romance
Format & Pages: e-book, 320
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The Elite Crimes Unit works behind the scenes of Interpol—and employs some of the world’s most talented criminal minds. Because as everyone knows, it takes a thief to catch a thief—or to seduce one . . .

The old farmhouse in the French countryside is a refuge for former jewel thief Josephine Deveraux. Admittedly, there aren’t many men in the vicinity, but she has her cat to cuddle up with. It’s a far cry from her former life, constantly running from the law, and she’s enjoying her peace . . . until the intruder in the three-piece suit tackles her. He wants her back in the game, helping with a heist—and he’s not above making threats to get his way.

Little does Josephine know that notorious—and notoriously charming—thief, Xavier Lambert, is after the very same 180-carat prize she’s being blackmailed to steal. To his chagrin, he’s doing it not as a free agent, but as a member of the Elite Crimes Unit—the team he was forced to join when his brilliant career came to a sudden end. And little does Xavier know that his comeback is about to include a stranger’s kiss, a stinging slap, and a hunt for missing treasure—along with the infuriatingly sexy woman who’s outfoxing him . . .

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Review: Barefoot with a Bodyguard, by Roxanne St. Claire

Barefoot with a Bodyguard, by Roxanne St. Claire

Barefoot with a Bodyguard by Roxanne St. Claire
Published by South Street Publishing on June 12, 2015
Genre(s): fiction, contemporary, romance
Format & Pages: e-book, 307
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Introducing Barefoot Bay Undercover, a romantic adventure series set on the tropical beaches of Barefoot Bay. When former CIA consultant Gabe Rossi creates a secret “privatized witness protection” operation hidden within the security firm at the local resort, things get a little more suspenseful on the island paradise. Gabe’s clients need to keep a low profile and stay safe while he helps them create new identities…and, sometimes, they find love. (To find out how Gabe started the operation, be sure to read the series prequel novella, Barefoot Bound.)

Barefoot with a Bodyguard – book one in the series

About to take the bar exam after ending a five-year marriage that derailed her career plans and her life, Kate Kingston craves independence and a vacation. Somewhere warm with sea breezes, sunshine, sand…and no scary threats against her that have been showing up in her dad’s office. Barefoot Bay is the perfect place for some serenity while she studies and puts her life back together. But when she meets the brooding wall of muscle her father hired to protect her, Kate feels her hard won independence slipping away as fast as her resolve to avoid men who wield power over her.

Mixed martial arts trainer Alec Petrov has been on the run for a long time. Guarding a young attorney-to-be while pretending to be her husband is not a bad way to live off the grid, hidden from the Russian mobster who is hunting Alec with deadly intent. But Kate brings out a tender side Alec doesn’t understand, or believe he deserves, and he soon realizes that keeping them both safe is only half the challenge. Keeping his hands off her and his attraction under control will be every bit as difficult in the closed quarters of an exclusive resort.

When their make-believe honeymoon in paradise turns sensual, complicated, and dangerous, Alec and Kate realize it’s not just their lives that are in jeopardy, it’s their hearts. And they’ll have to fight to the end to save each other…and their love.

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Review: Desperate Measures, by Elle Casey

Desperate Measures, by Elle Casey

Desperate Measures by Elle Casey
Published by Elle Casey on September 14, 2015
Genre(s): fiction, chick-lit, romance
Format & Pages: e-book, 430
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NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR, ELLE CASEY, brings readers the romantic chick lit novel, DESPERATE MEASURES.

[Formerly titled Desperate Measures Trilogy: Book 1, Full Measure, published under Elle Casey’s alter ego, Kat Lee.]

Drawn together over a love of books, three women strike up an unlikely friendship, and end up forming bonds that move well beyond what any of them ever imagined possible. Desperate Measures serves up laughter, romance, cookies, tea – and a whole lot of love.

Aimee: A housewife left in the dust by her philandering husband, with an outdated high school education but a serious talent when it comes to confections…

Elizabeth: An accountant tired of crunching numbers for hundreds of clients with more money than they know what to do with…

Kiki: An exotic dancer who wants nothing more than to get out of the game…

Content warning: Due to sexy situations and content, this book is definitely not appropriate for younger readers.

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Review: Christmas Bliss, by Mary Kay Andrews

Christmas Bliss, by Mary Kay Andrews

Christmas Bliss by Mary Kay Andrews
Published by St. Martin’s Press on October 15, 2013
Genre(s): fiction, chick-lit, romance
Format & Pages: hardcover, 294
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From the New York Times bestselling author of Summer Rental comes a novella that celebrates love, the holidays, and antiques. Christmas is coming, but Savannah antique dealer Weezie Foley is doubly distracted both by her upcoming wedding to her longtime love, chef Daniel Stipanek and also by the fact that her best friend and maid-of-honor BeBe Loudermilk is due to give birth any day and is still adamantly refusing to marry her live-in-love Harry. Listeners have come to love these characters in Mary Kay Andrews’ three previous Savannah novels: Savannah Blues, Savannah Breeze, and Blue Christmas. Christmas Bliss offers Andrews’ legions of fans the best of many things: familiar characters, a new novella for Christmas, and a celebration of Mary Kay Andrews’ own favorite pastime — antiquing. Blue Christmas was a fan favorite, and now Christmas Bliss is sure to fly off store shelves and into the hands of Andrews’ fans in bestselling numbers.

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Review: Eligible, by Curtis Sittenfeld

Eligible, by Curtis Sittenfeld

Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld
Published by Random House on April 19, 2016
Genre(s): fiction, chick-lit, contemporary, romance
Format & Pages: hardcover, 492
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This version of the Bennet family—and Mr. Darcy—is one that you have and haven’t met before: Liz is a magazine writer in her late thirties who, like her yoga instructor older sister, Jane, lives in New York City. When their father has a health scare, they return to their childhood home in Cincinnati to help—and discover that the sprawling Tudor they grew up in is crumbling and the family is in disarray.

Youngest sisters Kitty and Lydia are too busy with their CrossFit workouts and Paleo diets to get jobs. Mary, the middle sister, is earning her third online master’s degree and barely leaves her room, except for those mysterious Tuesday-night outings she won’t discuss. And Mrs. Bennet has one thing on her mind: how to marry off her daughters, especially as Jane’s fortieth birthday fast approaches.

Enter Chip Bingley, a handsome new-in-town doctor who recently appeared on the juggernaut reality TV dating show Eligible. At a Fourth of July barbecue, Chip takes an immediate interest in Jane, but Chip’s friend neurosurgeon Fitzwilliam Darcy reveals himself to Liz to be much less charming. . . .

And yet, first impressions can be deceiving.

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