Saturday, 14 June 2014

The Stipulation Box Set by M.L. Young

The Stipulation Box Set (Volumes 1-7)The Stipulation Box Set by M.L. Young
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Natalie is an overworked and underpaid college student trying to keep up her GPA while working almost full-time just to pay her tuition. She's a cashier at a store she hates, her grades are slipping, and if she doesn't do something drastic she will lose her grants and scholarships, meaning she'll get kicked out of school.

Just when things can't get worse, her friend Tara informs her of a way she can quit her job and have all of her bills paid off, and that is to become a sugar baby. It's in this proposition that she meets Roman Parker, a reclusive software millionaire who tests her boundaries both in and out of the bedroom.

Becoming a sugar baby is the only option for Natalie, even if her Christian upbringing says not to do it. If Natalie takes the job, everything will fall into place and she can be saved. All she has to do is agree to be sugared.

M.L. Young is an author currently living in Illinois. She is the author of The Stipulation Serials. To find out more and to stay up to date on all things related to the books, follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

I received this book via netgalley in exchange for an honest review

I very seldom give 3 stars and I really don't like doing it, but I do have to say that this book left me thinking that there could of been more to the story.

It didn't grab me from the beginning like some books do, and I could put it down.

It just needs more oomph put into it, it needs to be able to grab you right from the start and say you cannot put me down.

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Better Homes and Hauntings by Molly Harper

Better Homes and HauntingsBetter Homes and Hauntings by Molly Harper
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Author of the beloved Half Moon Hollow series of vampire romances (Nice Girls Don’t Have Fangs), Molly Harper has created a standalone paranormal romance in which a dilapidated haunted house could bring star-crossed lovers together—if it doesn’t kill them first!

When Nina Linden is hired to landscape a private island off the New England coast, she sees it as her chance to rebuild her failing business after being cheated by her unscrupulous ex. She never expects that her new client, software mogul Deacon Whitney, would see more in her than just a talented gardener. Deacon has paid top dollar to the crews he’s hired to renovate the desolate Whitney estate—he had to, because the bumps, thumps, and unexplained sightings of ghostly figures in nineteenth-century dress are driving workers away faster than he can say “Boo.”

But Nina shows no signs of being scared away, even as she experiences some unnerving apparitions herself. And as the two of them work closely together to restore the mansion’s faded glory, Deacon realizes that he’s found someone who doesn’t seem to like his fortune more than himself—while Nina may have finally found the one man she can trust with her bruised and battered heart.

But something on the island doesn’t believe in true love…and if Nina and Deacon can’t figure out how to put these angry spirits to rest, their own love doesn’t stand a ghost of a chance.

My mother remembers an 8-year-old me setting up my “writing office” in our living room by putting her old manual typewriter on the couch next to a toy phone. And I (very slowly) pecked out the story of my third-grade class taking a trip around the world and losing a kid in each city.

I had a dark sense of humor, even then.

In high school, when other girls my age were writing poems about dying unicorns and bleeding roses, I was writing essays about having political arguments with my dad at the dinner table. (Whoever made the other person laugh at their own political party won the argument.) I knew I wanted to write when I grew up, but I also knew there was very little chance I could make a living writing books, so I went for the next best thing – newspaper writing.

I majored in print journalism at Western Kentucky University and used my shiny new degree to get a job at my hometown newspaper. I married my high school sweetheart, David, a local police officer. And for six years, I wrote about school board meetings, quilt shows, a man “losing” the fully grown bear he kept as a pet in his basement, and a guy who faked his death by shark attack in Florida and ended up tossing pies at a local pizzeria.

I loved my job at the paper. I loved meeting new people every day and never knowing where I would end up. But somehow, the ever-shifting schedules of a police officer and a reporter did not equal "family friendly." One of us needed to take a normal job for the sake of our young daughter. I took a secretarial position at a local church office, which left me with dependably free evenings for the first time in my adult life. David was working the night shift that summer and I was We were living in "The Apartment of Lost Souls" while building our new home. This was the place where appliances and small electronics went to die. Every night I would tuck our snoozing child into bed and wait for the washing machine to start smoking or the computer to suddenly flash the "blue screen of death." Then there was the plague of frogs in the bathroom that put our daughter of potty-training for about six months.

Normally, when things get tough, I can take solace in reading. But I surveyed my packing box of favorite books with the apathetic air of someone who stands in front of the open refrigerator for 10 minutes and can't find anything. Nothing sounded good. So I just sat down and started writing something I would want to read.

Being a huge fan of vampire movies and TV shows, I wondered, what would be the most humiliating way possible to be turned into a vampire- a story that a vampire would be embarrassed to share with their vampire buddies over a nice glass of Type O. Well, first, you'd have to make the protaganist a bit of an accidental loser. She's single, almost 30, and a librarian working in the small Kentucky town where she grew up. This "triple whammy of worry" has made her a permanent fixture on her Mama's prayer list. And despite the fact that's pretty good at her job, she just got canned so her boss could replace her with someone who occasionally starts workplace fires. She drowns her sorrows at the local faux nostalgia-themed sports bar and during the commute home, she's mistaken for a deer and then shot by a drunk hunter. And then she wakes up as a vampire.

And thus, Jane Jameson and the wacky denizens of Half-Moon Hollow were born.

It took me almost a year to complete and edit a draft of the book, which I planned as the first in a three-book series. I spent three months using to ruthlessly stalk potential literary agents. (There were a lot of lists involved, I don't want to re-live it.) I was gently rejected by at least half of them. I corresponded with some very nice, very patient people, but ultimately signed with the fabulous Stephany Evans of Fine Print Literary Management. Stephany was willing to take to the time to give me advice on how to imp(less)

A free copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

This was a change for me to read, it is an easy going book that makes you want to read it all in one go.

The characters were easy to get on with and there was humour in this read at times.

A very nice change to what I normally read.

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The Night Before by Luanne Rice

The Night BeforeThe Night Before by Luanne Rice
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A new short story by Luanne Rice
On the eve of a wedding by the edge of the sea, a once-in-a-lifetime storm sweeps through a family Christmas tree farm on the Connecticut Shoreline and sets in motion the events of The Night Before. New York Times bestselling author Luanne Rice tells the powerful story of the young couple about to get married, a mother and daughter three thousand miles apart, and best friends who could never forget each other.
Lydia Madison, an artist with a carefully guarded secret, opens her home and her heart to Danny Byrne (last seen in Silver Bells) and Sara Castillo. When the storm hits memories are cracked open, Lydia’s inspiration as an artist is revealed, and love and heartbreak intertwine.
This brand new short story returns to the setting of Rice’s beloved Black Hall and Hubbard’s Point series of novels, and poignantly reveals that when there is love this deep there’s no such thing as time or distance. A rare treat from an acclaimed and treasured author.

Luanne Rice is the New York Times bestselling author of thirty-one novels including THE LEMON ORCHARD (Viking/Pamela Dorman Books.) Five of her books have been made into movies and mini-series, many have been New York Times bestsellers and two of her pieces have been featured in off-Broadway theatre productions. She divides her time between New York City and the Connecticut shoreline.
More about Luanne Rice...

I received this in exchange for an honest review

This is a very emotional short story.

A good read, but if you don't like tears then this is not for you.

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