Monday, 28 July 2014

Review: Getting By by Claudia Y. Burgoa

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Getting By
Claudia Y. Burgoa

A Knight's Tale #1

Published February 18th 2014

When Emma Anderson arrived at San Francisco International Airport, she regretted accepting the distinction of being the maid of honor to Gaby’s—her childhood friend—wedding. It had been years since the last time she set foot in Menlo Park, where her parents had been killed. The rug where she had been shoving her feelings since that day looked bumpier than a camel’s hump. Who could blame her; if she hadn’t been selfish they’d still be around. Ever since that fateful day, Emma has been perfecting the knack of Getting By.

Cade’s wedding in Menlo Park—a city close to San Francisco—might be the perfect place for Jake Knight to shake the memories of his ex, Emma Anderson for good. Single, available women galore for an entire week was the perfect medication, one he intended to take three times a day for an entire week to return to his player days. It was a plan the former spy thought flawless until he came face to face with the maid of honor. Jake’s perfect retreat turns into a flight, fight or hide week of celebrations.

My Review

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Getting By. It was exactly what I was expecting after reading the blurb, but in no way was I disappointed!

I think what made it so enjoyable is how awesomely cute a couple (non-couple?) Emma and Jake make. They are just so in tune with one another they do the cutest couple-y things together without even realising it. Burgoa somehow managed to find the inner romantic in me (which I was very surprised to find out that I had) and I found myself smiling practically the whole way through the book with a fair amount of laughter thrown in.

The only little niggle I had about this book is just me getting annoyed that all these young, beautiful people in the book just have stacks of cash. I think I got bitten by the green-eyed monster, because as a poor uni student, I wish I had that kind of moo-la. That is as close as I get to finding something wrong with Getting By, so that says a lot about how good this book is.

Burgao delivers a book that you simply cannot put down in Getting By. It leaves me practically dying to get my hands on the sequel. :) 

opopo
4 out of 5

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Book Blitz: Next to You by Claudia Y. Burgoa | Author Interview + Giveaway

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The Book

Next To You
Claudia Y. Burgoa

Life #2

Published June 2014

Purchase:
Amazon | B&N

Him
…I need time. Time to heal those wings and learn to use them…
Was part of the letter Rebecca Trent, Daniel Brightmore’s fiancĂ©e and best friend left when she ran away. The person he trusted the most for the past decade disappeared without giving him a second glance. She taught him how to love, believe in family and that everyone deserves a happily ever after. Now he’s struggling between wiping any traces of her from his life and drowning his sorrows away with the help of his new best friends—Don Julio and Jack Daniels.

Her
Rebecca’s past suffocated her to the point of not wanting to continue, her lifeline and the only reason to live began to withdraw from her. She wished it had been her imagination, but heard it loud and clear: “If not, there’s always a divorce, nothing is forever.” This time it became a leave or die situation. Something has got to change—she had to change. Packing light and leaving a letter behind, she takes a journey that can help her find herself through the shards of her painful childhood.
As letters, memories and stories are exchanged, two once inseparable people reconcile what’s left of their relationship. Beyond the confines of everything they built together, they’re left with two lonely people searching for what it means to be whole. Will they find meaning under their bruised psyches or will their pasts get the better of them?

About the Author

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter
Claudia lives in Colorado with her family and three dogs. Two beagles who believe they are human, and a bichon who thinks she’s a beagle. While managing life, she works as a CFO at a small IT Company. She’s a dreamer who enjoys music, laughter and a good story.


Author Interview

Describe yourself in five words or less.

Imaginative, intense, quirky, obsessive, loyal.

Can you tell us a little about Next To You?

This book is about Dan and Becca, two people who had a difficult upbringing. They were best friends, lovers but Becca’s past prevented her to move on and have a full happy life.

Can you share your favorite scene?

Blaine Frank disembarks the elevator, just as I board it. He nods and says nothing. I thought he’d be working on site today, and my gut tells me he’s coming from the sixth floor and didn’t visit my office. I hate this feeling of jealousy. He has a thing for Becca, I’d have to be blind not to notice the way he looks at her. My hands curl into fists and the childish wish that Rusty peed on his shoe, again, crosses my mind. That should teach him to stay away from Becca. Fuck, I’m behaving like a green-eyed boyfriend, when I’m not even a friend of hers. Aside from a couple of work related meetings, the most intimate moments we’ve shared have happened in the break room, when we both wanted to use the espresso machine.

“Oh no, please, you use the espresso machine first. I’ll be back later,” both of us say and leave the break room. As a rule, I wait between thirty minutes to an hour for her to evacuate the premises. I’ve no doubt she does the same, because we both observe the same fucked up pattern. What happened to Becca preparing my cappuccino, or the other way around? Why don’t I prepare her a hot chocolate with extra foam? That fucking elephant she described is getting huge and one of these days we’ll have to move to a new building so the animal has room to grow.

The rage that clenches my insides, including my head and perhaps my heart takes me on a detour to Becca’s office, where I find her kneeling next to a chair, with a roll of paper towels and two different cleaners. One logo portrays a sadden beagle on top of a carpet. Seeing Rusty inside his playpen with a puppy pout and her ranting, softness my anger.

“We don’t pee on our guests, Rusty. What kind of behavior is this?” When Rusty spots me, he wags his tail, as if I should praise his behavior. Which I would, if Becca wouldn’t chide me right along with him. From the sounds of this and Blaine’s earlier sour puss face, I deduce my dog knows how to behave and keep away undesirable male attention. The female in front of us doesn’t appreciate that behavior though. “If you continue like this, I’ll have to keep you at home. Why don’t you pee on Daniel? Now that’s something I would enjoy.”

What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

My iPad

Name three things on your desk right now.

Bottle of water, books and laptop.

If you could trade places with anyone for just one day, who would you be?

Any person that has complete access to the Smithsonian museum.

You have been granted the use of one superpower for one week. Which power would you choose, and what would you do with it?

Telepathic manipulation, I’ll have everyone following my orders without having to say anything. Clean house, the opportunity of driving an Aston Martin for a day, walking anywhere I want without having to ask for permission—museums, English castles…the possibilities. World Domination for one day.

What are some books that you enjoyed recently?

The Stand By Stephen King, Take a Chance on Me by Susan May Warren

Blitz-Wide Giveaway

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Monday, 7 July 2014

The Ever-Growing TBR Pile

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Is it just me, or does the TBR pile never seem to lessen, only grow?

I have a nasty habit of getting new books all the time when I'm super keen to read them, then, for one reason or another, they sit unread on my shelf for a silly amount of time. Then I forget about them, because I get new ones again.

Then I get hit by a wave of boredom all of a sudden.

And voila! I  magically find all the books that I had forgotten about and go on a book binge that leaves me in an emotional wreck.

And what to I get out of all that? A smaller TBR pile? No. I get a bigger one because I end up liking new authors and having to read everything else they have ever written.

I think that it is just a fact of life. TBR piles have an exponential growth rate.


Tell me I'm not the only one? 

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Blog Tour: Breaking Fences by Juliana Haygert | Review + Giveaway

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The Book

Breaking Fences
Juliana Haygert

Coming June 2014

Purchase:
Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

All Beatriz “Bia” Fernandes wants is to prove herself—to her family and friends—though it’s hard to prove anything with an overbearing father and three famous polo-playing older brothers. After her acceptance into college results in a heated family argument, the Brazilian girl leaves everything behind to find her own American dream.

College life away from home is perfect until the people she believes to be her friends turn on her. With lies and rumors threatening to suffocate her, Bia turns to her only freedom. Riding.

But one thing gets in the way of her escape. Garrett Blackwell and his bad cowboy attitude. Working at the ranch is his obligation, bugging Bia is his newfound hobby. His thick skin and easy grin don’t hide what Bia already knows—this misunderstood and lonely cowboy fights his own demons. Brushing horses’ coats and mucking out stalls shouldn’t be this sexy, and it isn’t long before he becomes a part of her distraction.

However, escaping won’t solve her problems, and it’s up to Bia to break down the fences around her and prove her strength—not to her family and friends, but to herself … and for Garrett. Because standing on her own doesn’t have to mean standing alone.

** Companion novel of Breaking the Reins. Can be read out of order.**

About the Author

While Juliana Haygert dreams of being Wonder Woman, Buffy, or a blood elf shadow priest, she settles for the less exciting—but equally gratifying—life of a wife, mother, and author. Thousands of miles away from her former home in Brazil, she now resides in Connecticut and spends her days writing about kick-ass heroines and the heroes who drive them crazy.

My Review

When I first found out that there was going to be a another book in the world of Breaking the Reins, I was super excited. Then, when I discovered that it was all about Bia? I pounced on an opportunity to get my hands on a copy, ASAP! Bia was my favourite character in the previous book, and Haygert didn't disappoint me.

I think what I love most about Hayget's Breaking series, is that they are a contemporary romance novel with substance. It's not just about the possible relationship between Bia and Garrett. I mean, sure, it has that element - it would be a bit dry without it - but there is a balance between that and the personal struggles and growth the characters make as they are learning to pave their own way in the world as adults. From rumour mills to family disagreements to sexual assault to the strange behaviours of the the male species, Bia jumps the trivial and not so trivial hurdles thrown in her way. I found the writing so engaging, with the time flying, by along with the pages, and I felt very much like I was right there alongside Bia at each leg of the race.

I really felt like I learnt a lot from this book about both Brazilian culture and horses. To be honest, I am not the biggest fan of horses (I had one stand on my foot and break a couple of toes when I was a kid), but seeing them from Bia's and Garrett's point of view, it was easy see them as the same beautiful creatures she does. Then there is Brazil thing. What I found most interesting is that the university scene in Brazil seems to be very similar to how things are here in Australia, which I found wicked cool. Without a doubt, reading Breaking Fences was a learning experience for me as well as an fun way to pass the hours.

The one thing that left me a little bummed after finishing Breaking Fences, was that I really wanted to see a scene where Garrett meets Bia's brothers. I mean, that's something I would pay money to see, and without a doubt would be highly entertaining for the outside observer, and extremely uncomfortable for Garrett. :)

Haygert delivers a highly entertaining story in Breaking Fences, with highs and lows that keep you enthralled to the last page.

opopo
3 out of 5

Tour Wide Giveaway

US Only
>> Signed copy of Breaking the Reins <<

International
>> 2x eBook copy of Breaking the Reins <<
>> 2x 10$ Kindle/Nook gift card <<

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Blog HOP: Freedom to Read

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Freedom to Read Giveaway Hop
July 2nd to 9th
Co-hosted by I am a Reader, Not a Writer and Bookhounds

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