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Monday, March 31, 2014

Review: Confessions of a Paris Party Girl by Vicki Lesage

Confessions of a Paris Party Girl
by Vicki Lesage

Genre: Autobiography, Chick Lit, Humor
Publication: January 2014
Format: kindle
Source: ARC
Connect: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
Wine, romance, and French bureaucracy - the ups and downs of an American's life in Paris. This laugh-out-loud memoir is almost too funny to be true!

Drinking too much bubbly. Meeting sappy Frenchmen who have girlfriends or are creeps or both. Encountering problème after problème with French bureaucracy. When newly-single party girl Vicki moved to Paris, she was hoping to taste wine, stuff her face with croissants, and maybe fall in love.

In her first book, this long-time blogger and semi-professional drinker recounts the ups and downs of her life in Paris. Full of sass, shamefully honest admissions, and situations that seem too absurd to be true, Vicki makes you feel as if you're stumbling along the cobblestones with her.

Will she find love? Will she learn to consume reasonable amounts of alcohol? Will the French administration ever cut her a break?

If you're looking forward to read something light and funny, or if you enjoy books with Paris setting, this would be the perfect book for you. Confessions of a Paris Party Girl was a memoir of Vicky in her early years in Paris after she decided to move to Paris to have a lot of parties.

I was actually worried to read this. I was afraid that I wouldn't like it as I don't read a lot of memoirs (and I don't party a lot). But once I started reading Confessions of a Paris Party Girl, I found that it was very hard to put down. It was very interesting to read Vicky’s adventure—how she survived Paris and the French system. Her adventures are mostly hilarious. 

This book was definitely a very fun read. There was a lot of laugh-out-loud moment and reading this book will probably make you want to visit Paris or wish that you will someday fall in love with a Frenchman. I absolutely love Vicky’s writing style and her voice. For a moment, I've forgotten that I was reading a memoir. Vicky was a very good writer and I'm looking forward to read more of her work.

I received a copy of this book from the author to provide an honest review.


Vicki Lesage is an IT Director by day, writer by night. And a full-time nerd. She loves fondue, wine, math, and zombies. She lives in Paris with her French husband and rambunctious son.

Friday, March 21, 2014

On Tour: Envelope: Red by K. Baskett - Review + Q&A

K. Baskett is now on tour with CLP Book Tours with Envelope: Red. Please visit the CLP Book Tours page for more blog stops. Don't forget to leave a comment on the tour page with your email address to win a print copy of the book (US Only).

Envelope: Red
by K. Baskett

Genre: Adult, Crime, Thriller
Publication: November 2013
Source: ARC, CLP Blog Tours
Connect: Website | Twitter | YoutubeGoogle+ | Facebook | Goodreads | Amazon | IAN | Smashwords | Wattpad
Buy the book: Amazon | Kindle | estore
Unemployed with no prospects, Dorian Wells is a young man trying desperately to stay afloat and be a good father to his toddler son. While already struggling to pay the bills and earn proper visitation with his child, Dorian’s tumultuous life is thrown into further upheaval when his mother is suddenly hospitalized.

On the verge of losing everything, it seems Dorian finally has a stroke of luck when he inadvertently learns of a potential opportunity with Jakkaru, a decadent, cut-throat organization that pays handsomely by the body count. Dorian’s lifelong friend, Rafe Ibadiah, is his ticket into Jakkaru and soon Dorian is training to be a professional hitman. But learning how to properly kill for a living is not as easy as it seems, and he quickly discovers the short arms of theory are a far reach from reality as the harrowing journey makes him question everything he believes.

The final test before full acceptance into Jakkaru is a contract Dorian must complete alone. Delivered to him via a small red envelope, the name inside propels the stakes of this dangerous game higher than ever before. Dorian will sacrifice anything for his son, but it’s not until he is ordered to do the unthinkable that he grasps the horrific depth of his commitment.

Award-winning author, K. Baskett, expertly weaves a chilling tale of suspense in Envelope: Red that culminates in a shocking look at the prickly nuances of loyalty. Gritty and authentic, Dorian’s story is ultimately a poignant examination of the human condition - what lies within the heart of us all.

Envelope: Red started a bit slow with the introduction of Dorian and his life. Dorian was unemployed and had no prospect. But he’s trying really hard to be a good father to his son. I can’t say that I like Dorian what with his personality – he’s lazy and a bit selfish. But Dorian had to pull himself together when he lost his mother. It was then that he got the opportunity to be a part of Jakkuru, or jackal, a very dangerous organization.

K. Baskett was really good at building the story. I didn’t know what to expect when I started this book. I wasn’t fond of the main character. But after a while, I was hooked with the story and the Jakkaru’s world. I wanted to know what was going to happen to Dorian and what is it with the red envelope. The story became a bit predictable towards the end of it, but still, the ending left me with my mouth agape. If you’re a fan of crime, suspense and thriller, Envelope: Red is definitely a book for you.

Q & A with K. Baskett

1. Please introduce yourself and your book.
Envelope: Red is the new suspense/thriller from award-winning author, K. Baskett. Young and unemployed, Dorian Wells is striving to pay the bills and care for his toddler son when his mother is suddenly hospitalized. On the verge of losing everything, he inadvertently learns of Jakkaru, a vicious and murderous organization that pays its associates well. Dorian’s lifelong friend, Rafe Ibadiah, is his ticket into Jakkaru and soon he is training to be a professional hitman. But killing people for a living is not as easy as it seems, and Dorian soon discovers the short arms of theory are a far reach from reality as the harrowing journey makes Dorian question everything he believes. The final test before full acceptance into Jakkaru is a contract Dorian must complete alone. Delivered to him via a small red envelope, the name inside propels the stakes of this dangerous game higher than ever before. Dorian will sacrifice anything for his son, but it’s not until he is ordered to do the unthinkable that he grasps the horrific depth of his commitment.

2. How do you come up with the idea of the book? 
Incidentally, the original idea for the Envelope: Red was not mine. It was actually my fiance who came up with the story-line and fleshed it out as a mini-short story. I thought the concept was so intriguing that I wanted to explore turning that skeleton of a plot into a full-length novel. So while the finished work is all mine (subplot, characterization, story arc, climax, etc), the seed was planted by someone else. I want to add here that I asked permission to use the story idea as the basis for my next novel before claiming it as my own.

3. What is your inspiration?
My inspiration comes from the most unexpected places! Sometimes the seed of an idea may be planted by someone else, other times I might get a nugget of inspiration out of seemingly nowhere as I am going about my everyday mundane tasks. You never know when or where inspiration is going to strike, but I always embrace it when it does. I have a little notebook used expressly for that purpose, and in it I keep track of all my various topics and ideas for potential future projects.

4. Can you see yourself in any of your characters?
I break myself into pieces and infuse one small part of me into each and every character that I write about. Take the “right” trait from each character, and you could combine them to come very close to knowing exactly what sort of person I am. However, I am not going to tell you which of the traits in each character came from me. Where is the mystery in that?!

5. What do you like most about this book? 
One of the main characters, Rafe, completely stole my heart as I was writing Envelope: Red. He is just so genuine and loyal - a real friend who is trustworthy, dependable and honest. That kind of strong, pure disposition is so rare these days and Rafe is definitely a gem. And not only that, he is charming and funny - a great joy to be around.

I also like the fact that this book culminates in a shocking twist. I'm eager to hear from as many readers as possible to learn how many folks were able to see it coming. From feedback I've gotten so far, it seems I have managed to surprise the majority of readers and keep them guessing all the way until the end.

6. What's something you want to try at least once in your life?
Scuba-diving. In fact, I have never even gone snorkeling. I'm convinced this means I am missing out on one of life's great experiences.

7. What are you working on right now?
I am working on my next novel, a sci-fi thriller called Renata, about a young couple who loses their daughter in a tragic accident and are willing to go to any lengths to have her back.

8. Anything you would like to say to your readers?
My books are the best part of me. I put my absolute all into the novels I write and offer to you, and I strive to make sure you receive a high-quality product (with no cliff-hangers). Envelope:Red is my second go-round but my first book still holds a special place in my heart. I call my debut novel, No Greater Illusion, my single greatest achievement and my contribution to the world. And sometimes I laugh when I say that last one, because I don’t want anyone to think that I have delusions of grandeur... but in my heart I know it is true. And so, with a humble spirit, I offer them both up for your enjoyment, or your scorn; but either way the experience is now yours. I also want to sincerely thank you for reading my words. I do this for you.


Jack of all trades, master of none - save for the art of procrastination - K. Baskett lives by the motto, "Never do today what can be put off until tomorrow." K. firmly believes that you aren't really interested in the author's hometown, spouse, children or pets, and has therefore decided to spare you the details. No Greater Illusion is the author's award-winning debut novel. Envelope: Red is the gritty suspense-thriller with a heart-pounding conclusion.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Book Blitz: Becoming Mrs. Walsh by Jessica Gordon - Review + Giveaway

Becoming Mrs. Walsh
by Jessica Gordon

Genre: Chick Lit, Romance
Publication: October 2012
Source: ARC, CLP Blog Tours
Connect: Twitter | Website
Buy the book: Amazon
Shoshana Thompson is 26 years old, miles from home, and engaged to Andrew Walsh, the last single Walsh brother of one of Washington, D.C.'s wealthiest families. Throughout her engagement she becomes enamored with the Walsh lifestyle.

Life in the fast lane comes to a screeching halt when Shoshana develops feelings for another man. When she discovers the feelings may not be one-sided, things are about to get a lot more complicated. This man is not only part of her fancy new world, he is also completely off-limits.
Shoshana Thompson, or Sho, was engaged to be married to Andrew (Drew) Walsh, from a very wealthy family. Sho was just an average girl and now she had to get used to the Walsh lifestyle – the event, expensive dresses, shoes, make up and flying on a private jet. Things were supposed to be easy for Sho. She had a really nice soon to be mother-in-law, and sisters-in-law. But Sho was now in trouble when she developed feelings for another man. One that she was not supposed to fall in love with. 

If you're a chick lit fan, you're going to love this book. Becoming Mrs. Walsh was a fun, quick read. I absolutely love Sho’s relationship with her soon to be sister-in-laws – Ariel, Zoey, Rachel. And Birdie, Sho’s soon to be mother-in-law was really generous and nice to Sho despite what her sister-in-law said about her. 

I love the romance between Drew-Sho-Mark. I can see how much Drew care about Sho although he wasn’t always around because of the nature of his job. And Mark and Sho’s new romance was really hot. I love both Drew and Mark for a very different reason, but I always wanted her to end up with Drew, because that sounded like the right thing to do. In the end, Sho had to decide if she wanted to do the right thing, or what she feels right. The ending to the story was shocking. Totally not what I expected to see. I really hope that there would be a sequel to this book, because I’m sure the readers would want to know what happened next. 

I received a copy of Becoming Mrs. Walsh by Jessica Gordon from the author/CLP Blog Tours as part of the book blitz. 


Jessica Gordon is a Johns Hopkins University alumna for both her undergraduate and graduate degrees. She received her bachelor’s degree in liberal arts from the Writing Seminars program and her master’s degree in communications. After working in the corporate world for several years, Jessica decided to return to her first love: creative writing. Jessica takes her readers to the prominent Washington, D.C. area where her characters navigate through the complex world of family, in-laws, and love.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

On Tour: I Know You're There by Susan Allison-Dean - Review + Excerpt + Giveaway

Susan Allison-Dean is now on tour with CLP Book Tours with her book, I Know You're There. Please visit her tour page for more blog stops.

I Know You're There
by Susan Allison-Dean

Genre: Chick Lit
Publication: October 2013
Source: ARC, CLP Blog Tours
Connect: Facebook | Twitter | Website | Goodreads | Blog
Buy the Book: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Jill Bradley is a twenty-four-year-old nurse whose life is going great; she has established herself in her new career and she’s looking forward to getting engaged to her high school sweetheart. But faced with a watershed moment, she has to deal with simultaneous family tragedy, injury, and betrayal, and feels it’s way too much to cope with. In a moment of despair, Jill books a trip to a Caribbean island in an effort to escape. While she finds respite and romance, her problems have also packed their own suitcase.

Helen Bradley, Jill’s mother dedicated her entire life to her family like many mothers in the 1970’s and 80’s. Despite her best efforts, however, she hasn’t always been able to be the type of mother she wished she could be. She has a secret she was hoping would just go away, but it won’t. If she doesn’t share it with Jill it might bring her daughter more harm.

I Know You’re There is a mother-daughter journey, celebrating the highs and delving into the lows of family life. Can the power of love heal all things?

I received a copy of I Know You're There by Susan Allison-Dean from the author/CLP Blog Tours as part of the blog tour. 

Jill Bradley had a great life. She’s had her career as a nurse and looking forward to getting engaged to her high school sweetheart. Her life changed forever after one night working a double shift. She was involved in an accident that killed a couple traveling to the hospital to deliver their unborn child. The two parents are killed and the baby survived. 

At first, I felt like the book was a bit heavy with emotion as Jill faced with lots of difficulty and tragedies at the same time. She was involved in an accident and was about to lose her job and boyfriend.  Then she found out about the secret that her parents were keeping from her. At first, I thought that the story was going to feature the baby that survived in the car crash, but no. And I was a bit disappointed on how the author ended the mother, Helen’s point of view in the story. I wished that she had stayed with Jill until the end so that she can see how her daughter recover.

The second part of the book was a bit more fun. It felt like reading a different book with Jill as she escaped to the Caribbean island to start anew. I love some of the scenes in the island, especially when Jill went to explore the island. They were beautiful.I Know You're There was definitely a great mother-daughter read with bits of drama, tragedy, romance and other things.

Book Excerpt

It was a long day and I was looking forward to going home as we prepared our reports to give to the second shift in the nurse’s conference room.

“I need someone to stay for the evening shift; Barb called in sick.” Marie leaned on the door entryway, rubbed the back of her neck, as she broke the news in a tone deeper than usual. This was the third time this month Barb called in sick.

“Can’t nursing administration send us a float nurse?” Natasha moaned.

“No, the floats are already assigned.”

We each looked anywhere but at our nurse manager. We were all tired. Mrs. Swanson’s death, two new admissions from the ER, four fresh patients from the Operating Room, and one more coming, a fresh total hip replacement. It would be a busy evening monitoring all these new patients, getting to know them, getting them settled in. Not to mention the regular patients we had on what would now be a full unit. At least there would be no more patients to admit, but the evening would add visiting family members. Most of them required care and explanations sometimes more than the patients did.

The silence was unnerving. Marie just stood in the door, feet planted firmly, and waited for someone to volunteer. We knew she didn’t want to do it, but she had no choice. An inner voice warned me, “Let someone else do it,” but my mouth opened and the words came out, “OK, I’ll stay.”

Author Bio:

Sue Allison-Dean is a nurse who retired from traditional practice in 1999, after working 13 years as a Wound, Ostomy, Continence Clinical Nurse Specialist. She found a second career in gardening after working in a garden center and completing an organic gardening internship at Highgrove Garden in England. She now co-owns Naturescapes with her landscape designer husband, Robert. She has authored several clinical and horticulture articles and was a contributing author to the bestselling book, Touched By A Nurse. She is passionate about the sea and loves exploring tropical islands. She extends this passion by doing volunteer work benefitting dolphins and whales. Sue splits her time between Armonk, New York and Cary, North Carolina, with her husband and English bulldog, Bubba.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Review: Saving Wishes by G.J. Walker-Smith

Saving Wishes (Wishes #1)
by G.J. Walker-Smith

Genre: Chick Lit, Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Publication:  February 2013
Format: ebooks
Source: NetGalley
Connect: Facebook | Twitter 
For Charli Blake, being seventeen is a tough gig.

She's been branded a troublemaker, her reputation is in tatters and she's stuck in Pipers Cove, a speck of a town on the coast of Tasmania.

Thankfully, it's temporary. Her lifelong dream of travelling the world is just months away from becoming reality. All she has to do is ride out the last few months of high school, which is easier said than done thanks to a trio of mean girls known as The Beautifuls.

When Adam Décarie arrives in town, all the way from New York, life takes an unexpected turn. His arrival sets off a chain of events that alters her life forever, convincing her of one thing. Fate brought him to her.

Saving Wishes is the story of a girl who doesn't quite fit the life she's living, and the boy who helps her realise why.

Charlotte Blake or Charli was seventeen living in a small town of Pipers Cove in Tasmania. She and her best friend, Nicole planned to leave home and travel around the world after school end. But things started to change when Adam Décarie, a Parisienne live in New York, arrived in town to visit his cousin.

This was an enjoyable read. I love how it was written in Charli’s narrative. She can be funny at times. Adam was a really nice guy. He’s gorgeous and sweet. I love how he would sometimes speak French and Charli couldn’t understand it (even though Charlie took French at school). I love reading Charli’s interaction with other people, especially Adam, and Alex (her brother). She sounded real and alive.

Saving Wishes started off a bit slow, and picked up real quick. There were a few twists towards the end that caught me by surprise.  I really did not see it coming. G.J. Walker-Smith did a really great job at writing this book. I just couldn’t wait to read the second book when I reached the final page. I need to know about Charli’s journey to see the world, the La La Land and Adam. Definitely need more Adam. Saving Wishes is definitely a great heartwarming read.

I received an ARC through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Review: Just a Girl, Standing in Front of a Boy by Lucy-Anne Holmes

Just a Girl, Standing in Front of a Boy
by Lucy-Anne Holmes

Genre: Adult, Chick Lit, Romance, Humor
Publication:  January 2014
Format: ebooks
Source: Own
Connect: Twitter
'My love story may not be the sort you read about in books or see in films . . . Love stories have glorious highs and ghastly lows. But when it comes to my own life, I'd have to say, you can keep your fabulous highs and I'll happily steer clear of the terrible lows.'

After a rocky start in life, Jenny Taylor, 27, star receptionist at the local doctors surgery, has things all worked out thanks to 'The Smiling Fanny Manifesto' - a list of 10 daily things she must do to keep the blues at bay. But her life is turned upside down when she meets aspiring musician Joe King. And reliable boyfriend Matt proposes. And then her mum leaves her dad and moves into Jenny's flat determined to 'bond'.

Just a Girl, Standing in Front of a Boy will make you laugh and cry - and it will make you look at your own love story in a new way. Lucy-Anne Holmes is the bestselling author of 50 Ways to Find a Lover.
I truly enjoyed this book, Just a Girl, Standing in Front of a Boy. I love how Lucy-Anne Holmes wrote about her characters. She made me fell in love with the characters. I really like Jenny Taylor and her best friend, Philippa and their smiling manifesto. And Joe King! It was hard not to like him. Reading this book feels like riding on a roller coaster of emotion. It had its hilarious and heartbreaking moments. There may be little things that I didn’t like much, like how Lucy-Anne Holmes ties it up with Jenny, her mother and Joe King, but I still enjoy this book. It was a page turner. I would definitely recommend this to chic lit lovers.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Review: The Trouble with Lucy by L.J. Young

The Trouble with Lucy
by L.J. Young 

Genre: Chick Lit, Romance
Publication:  November 2012
Format: ebooks
Source: Own
Connect: Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Lucy Lockhart had it all. A glamorous job, a successful boyfriend and a fabulous apartment. But when she's sent to recuperate at her parents' country house following a sudden illness, she meets dreamy, blue-eyed, Tom McGregor, and suddenly starts to realise what she's been missing.

Tom takes one look at city girl Lucy, and decides to avoid her at all costs. He's been hurt by girls like her before. But there's something about Lucy and as their paths continue to cross, he realises there's more to her than meets the eye.

Despite their deepening feelings, neither can imagine a future together. Lucy could never live in the country and Tom could never go back to the city. The very idea horrifies them both.

Their hearts however, have other plans.

An often hilarious, rural romance with lots of laid-back country charm, a rich cast of characters and a sizzling love affair between two opposites who are deeply attracted to each other

Lucy is staying with her parents in the country after having a fit. She arrives in Lillypilly, expecting that she is not going to enjoy this trip. But then she met Tom, a local farmer, after her car got stuck in mud and basically fall in love at the first sight. The trouble is that Lucy has a boyfriend in the city named Zip who just got a job in New York.

I didn't expect much when I start The Trouble with Lucy, but find that I really enjoy this book. It has the right amount of humor, romance and drama. Although... I do think that the alternating viewpoints between and Tom are a little bit confusing. But, The Trouble with Lucy is a fun, cute read. I read this one in one sitting. I love moments between Lucy and Tom. I wouldn’t say that this is a really great book, but I’m giving this one a four hearts because I really enjoy this one and it makes me smile. If you’re looking for a quick read with cute, light romance, you might enjoy The Trouble with Lucy.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Review: Princess Avenger by Bernadette Rowley

Princess Avenger
by Bernadette Rowley

Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
Publication:  October 2012
Format: ebooks
Source: Own
Connect: WebsiteTwitter | Facebook | Goodreads
Passionate and headstrong, Alecia is no ordinary princess. Angered by the cold-blooded murder of her first love, she sets out to avenge his death.

Army Captain Vard Anton, the epitome of masculine strength and grace, is dealing with some dark secrets of his own. When he is appointed Alecia's body-guard, both find it hard to ignore the chemistry between them.

With assassination attempts and the threat of an arranged marriage looming over her, Alecia realises her time is running out. But Alecia's biggest battle is the one within as she tries to suppress the raging desire she feels for the powerfully attractive Vard. Can Alecia resist Vard while trying to exact revenge and avoiding the lecherous attentions of her husband-to-be? Will the power of love and desire be enough to unite Alecia and Vard forever?

Though separated by class and palace intrigues, Alecia and Vard are entwined by desire in this wonderful fantasy romance.
I admitted that I choose to read this book because I was attracted towards the cover. It’s beautiful. And after I read the synopsis, I knew that I have to read this. Alecia sounded like a great kick-ass heroine.

I was hooked from the first few pages of the book.  I love how Alecia went out in disguise to avenge her lover. The first meeting between Alecia and Vard was very good.  I had a really good feeling about this book. But after a while, the story started to focus more on the romance between Alecia and Vard, and Alecia’s arranged marriage. This is when I got a bit disappointed. It’s not that I didn't like Vard. He seems like a good hero with a bit mystery of his own. It’s just that I was expecting to see a lot more of Alecia in ass kicking action.

And the ending kind of makes me wonder if there will be a sequel to this book. Because this book wasn’t supposed to end just like that. There were a lot questions need to be answered. I wanted to know what happened to Alecia and Vard after that. Overall, Princess Avenger is a good read with a lot of potential. I did enjoy this book, but, just not as much as I expect.


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