Review: The Right Swipe

The Right Swipe by Alisha Rai

Publication: Avon (HarperCollins)

Publication Date: 8/6/19

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced copy of this book from Avon (HarperCollins) in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review, or rating.

GoodReads Synopsis: Rhiannon Hunter may have revolutionized romance in the digital world, but in real life she only swipes right on her career—and the occasional hookup. The cynical dating app creator controls her love life with a few key rules:

– Nude pics are by invitation only

– If someone stands you up, block them with extreme prejudice

– Protect your heart

Only there aren’t any rules to govern her attraction to her newest match, former pro-football player Samson Lima. The sexy and seemingly sweet hunk woos her one magical night… and disappears.

Rhi thought she’d buried her hurt over Samson ghosting her, until he suddenly surfaces months later, still big, still beautiful—and in league with a business rival. He says he won’t fumble their second chance, but she’s wary. A temporary physical partnership is one thing, but a merger of hearts? Surely that’s too high a risk…

Review: This is the first book I’ve read from Alisha Rai and certainly won’t be my last. Based off the synopsis, I thought that this would be a more enemies turned lovers steamier read, but it ended up being a more complex story with less romance. It wasn’t necessarily a bad thing as Alisha Rai eloquently tackled sensitive and important topics like sexual harassment and CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy) in the book. I really loved the diverse set of characters she had in her book which I found quite refreshing. I appreciate the complexities that the author brings out in the main characters which was interesting to read. However, I found them extremely unlikable and they lacked chemistry. Her secondary characters were full of wit and charm. I hope that Katrina and Lakshmi received their love stories in the Modern Love series!

Rating: 3/5

Review: How to Hack a Heartbreak

How to Hack a Heartbreak by Kristin Rockaway

Publication Date: 7/30/19

Publisher: Harlequin – Graydon House

Rating: 2/5

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced digital copy of this book from Harlequin – Graydon House in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review, or rating.

Review: How to Hack a Heartbreak by Kristin Rockaway is a chick lit following Mel who works at a male driven tech start up where she is fed up with her job and terrible dates. After being stood up on a date, it’s the final straw and she decides to create JerkAlert app which warns women of terrible men to avoid dating. It becomes famous, however, in the midst of it all, there’s a romance story. I really wanted to love this book, but I felt like the novel missed its mark. It’s great that it advocates feminism, however, it was way too forceful and Melanie becomes unlikable. I liked the premise and that the author focuses on a woman in the tech industry, however, I didn’t like her stance that basically all men are terrible. I also didn’t like how Melanie goes about her job. If she hates it so much, why doesn’t she actually do something about it like look for a new one or report the issue to HR? Also her relationship with Alex seemed dull and immature. Alex’s character ends up being so one dimensional that I would have liked to have read his perspective as well. Overall, I would recommend skipping this book as there are other better romance reads out there.

Review: Things You Save In A Fire

Things You Save In A Fire by Katherine Center

Publication Date: 8/13/19
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

GoodReads Synopsis: From the New York Times bestselling author of How to Walk Away comes a stunning new novel about family, hope, and learning to love against all odds. 
Cassie Hanwell was born for emergencies. As one of the only female firefighters in her Texas firehouse, she’s seen her fair share of them, and she’s excellent at dealing with other people’s tragedies. But when her estranged and ailing mother asks her to uproot her life and move to Boston, it’s an emergency of a kind Cassie never anticipated.
The tough, old-school Boston firehouse is as different from Cassie’s old job as it could possibly be. Hazing, a lack of funding, and poor facilities mean that the firemen aren’t exactly thrilled to have a “lady” on the crew, even one as competent and smart as Cassie. Except for the handsome rookie, who doesn’t seem to mind having Cassie around. But she can’t think about that. Because she doesn’t fall in love. And because of the advice her old captain gave her: don’t date firefighters. Cassie can feel her resolve slipping…but will she jeopardize her place in a career where she’s worked so hard to be taken seriously?
Katherine Center’s Things You Save in a Fire is a heartfelt, affecting novel about life, love, and the true meaning of courage.

Review: Overall, I thought this was a pretty solid read. I definitely liked Things You Save In A Fire over Katherine’s previous book, How To Walk Away. I really liked Cassie’s character development and how she sheds light on gender inequality in her fire station along with dealing with a sick parent whom she has a strained relationship with. Overall, the writing style was very strong and the book kept me intrigued. There were some cheesy parts in here that were a bit over the top, but I was able to over look that. The only part I didn’t like so much was how rushed the epilogue was. The story started off strong and had great momentum, but at the end, everything seemed too rushed and wrapped up in a pretty bow. All in all, if you like contemporary romance, I’d recommend checking this one out. 

Rating: 4/5

Review: The Marriage Clock

The Marriage Clock by Zara Raheem

Publication Date: 7/23/19

Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks (HarperCollins Publisher)

Rating: 3/5

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced digital copy of this book from HarperCollins in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review, or rating.

Review: The Marriage Clock is Zara Raheem’s debut novel. This contemporary romance follows, Lelia, a young Muslim-American woman, who is given 3 months to find the perfect husband otherwise her conservative Indian parents will find someone for her and arrange her marriage. I found this book to be charming, witty, and could connect to the book on a personal level. Zara’s writing style keeps your attention throughout the full book. I also found it refreshing to read the view point from an Indian Muslim perspective as I am Indian Hindu and it was interesting to see what the similarities and differences were. With all of that said, there were some parts of the book that I found difficult to connect with fully which resulted in a lower star rating. First, I found Lelia’s personality to be a bit jarring, more immature, and delusional than I anticipated. At the same time, it didn’t surprise me as she was still living at home with her parents, but I expected a bit more openness and understanding from her. The ending made sense to me, but it felt me wanting something a bit more. Overall, I thought it was a great start for a debut. I’d recommend picking this up if you like contemporary novels.

Review: Fix Her Up

Fix Her Up by Tessa Bailey

Publishing Date: 6/11/19

Publisher: Avon Books

Rating: 2/5

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced digital copy of this book from Avon Books in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review or rating.

Review: Fix Her Up is the first book I’ve read from Tessa Bailey. This romcom follows Georgie, a young woman who wants to be taken seriously despite her age and profession, lands herself fake dating Travis, her childhood crush / her brother’s best friend / former baseball star. Initially the cute illustrative cover and premise intrigued me to read this novel. It wasn’t at all what I expected. The novel was definitely steamier than I anticipated it to be which I didn’t mind. The story started off pretty strong, however as I kept reading further, most of the scenes ended up being cringeworthy and too cheesy for me which I couldn’t overlook. I also wasn’t a big fan of the typical virgin female and player male main characters which I feel is overused and pretty dull to me. Unfortunately, this wasn’t my type of romance, but if you like the whole dating your best friend’s brother and fake dating sort of romance then this is for you.

Review: The Friend Zone

The Friend Zone by Abby Jimenez

Publication Date: 6/11/19
Publisher: Forever Romance (Grand Central Publishing)
Rating: 3/5

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced digital copy of this book from Forever Romance in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review, or rating.

Review: The Friend Zone is Abby Jimenez’s debut novel and will be part of a series. Kristen is busy planning her best friend’s wedding along side the best man, Joshua. Kristen and Joshua are drawn to each other, but Kristen is a long distance relationship with her military boyfriend of two years. Kristen also finds out that Josh wants kids, but she won’t be able to as she’ll be facing a life-changing medical procedure that will leave her to become infertile which then leads the question of whether things can go further with Josh or not. Given all the hype of this book on Instagram, I was really looking forward to reading this, but it didn’t quite fit my romance read standards. This romance read is unique in a sense where it discusses about battling infertility. I liked the way the author incorporated this, however, the main characters and the story killed it for me. I found both main characters to be unlikable and annoying. The story doesn’t really pick up until a third of the way into it and it took me a while to warm up to it. I also didn’t like the ending at all which I will leave it at that without any spoilers. With all of that said, this is a decent romance novel. I would recommend to you check it out yourself as it might be more of your cup of tea than mine.

Review: The Flatshare

The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary

Publication Date: 5/28/19

Publisher: FlatIron Books

Rating: 4/5

Disclaimer: I received a free advanced digital copy of this book from FlatIron Books in exchange for my honest opinion. This has no effect on my opinion, review or rating.

Review: The Flatshare is Beth O’Leary’s debut novel. This contemporary romance follows two people, Tiff and Leon, in London who are in a financial bind and agree upon a peculiar roommate agreement. I loved this book! It was lighthearted and fun, but also dove into serious issues such as emotional abuse in relationships and finding justice. The story is unique and maintains the reader’s interest from start to finish. All the characters are quite lovable and realistic. The alternating perspectives were refreshing, however, Leon’s perspective took a bit to get used to as the writing was a bit choppy. I definitely recommend picking this up if you love lighthearted and fluffy romance novels.