April 8, 2015

Short & Sweet (4)


Mini-reviews of New Adult and Romance novels that I enjoyed


[Publisher: Smashwords Edition | Pub. Date: 12/9/2014 | Genre: NA, Romance]
Last Will and Testament is about Lizzie Brandt, whose main focus since starting college has been partying and hooking up with guys (usually the wrong ones) and not her classes despite being one very smart girl. She's forced to pull it together and then some when her parents are killed in a car accident and she has to step in as a guardian for her two younger brothers. This is honestly one of the best and most well-rounded NA books I've read. The author addresses so many real issues at that age. The hard transition from high school to college, the realization that classes aren't as easy as they used to be, the partying and making mistakes with guys. Granted not all of us experience the tragedy Lizzie does but I think most of us will relate to how she feels half the time. Which is lost. But she steps up. We're given insight into her family and we meet her friends. Lizzie herself is confident, smart and bluntly honest. Qualities I always admire! And there's one sexy romance with Connor Lawson, her TA. I enjoyed their friendship and banter, their chemistry and how they faced the reality of their student/teacher situation. But the part that had me emailing author Dahlia Adler after I finished was... Lizzie is half Filipino! She included little nods to Filipino culture that I appreciated so much. It was spot-on and just right. I've said many times that I want a book about a girl who could be anyone but just happens to be Filipino and this did exactly that.


[Publisher: InterMix | Pub. Date: 10/7/2014 | Genre: NA, Romance]
The Rusk University series continues with All Broke Down and as of right now, it is my fave of the two books. It still mixes college and football (a la Friday Night Lights) but focuses on a new couple: Dylan and Silas. Dylan is an activist and loves to throw herself into many good causes and protests, which is how she finds herself arrested one night and meets Silas. Silas, on the other hand, is a hot-headed football player who falls back into old habits (like fighting) when he really needs to get his act together. Sparks fly almost immediately and even though they share some hot moments quickly, it's not all about that. It's about being there for each other. When Silas' position on the football team is threatened, who better to steer him on the right path than Dylan. They bring out a lot of good in each other and the more they become a part of each other's lives, the more I found myself rooting for them to make it work in spite of how different they are. But mixed in with the romance is also friendship, cameos from characters in the previous book and football. So if you like all these things, this is a series you should definitely check out.

[Pub. Date: 12/8/2014 | Genre: NA, paranormal romance]
JLA is just so good at writing paranormal romances! This is her third venture into paranormal NA and by far the one I've enjoyed most. It takes place in New Orleans and follows Ivy Morgan who is a college student by day and member of The Order by night. And when I say member, I mean she's a Fae hunter. So needless to say, she's pretty badass but also funny, independent and compassionate. She's been dedicated to The Order after a tragedy four years ago that took everyone she loved away from her. She's had her guard up ever since, until she meets Ren Owens, a fellow Fae Hunter. He's new in town and the attraction is immediate. He reminded me Aidan (from Covenant) with just a hint of Daemon Black (from Lux) thrown in while something uniquely his own. He's just as dedicated to his duty but more open? A little funnier? I mean he makes Disney references! (Seriously.) Ivy and Ren team up and begin hunting a new threat to the community and while they're uncovering secrets, they also can't fight their attraction. AKA steamy times ahead. They had the classic banter and chemistry we've come to expect from JLA but I really enjoyed the actual story too. Even though it was predictable, I didn't mind because I liked the setting, the world of The Order/Fae and the secondary characters too (wait until you meet Ivy's roommate!). Wicked ends on a big reveal so I'm excited to see where the story goes next.

[Publisher: Harlequin HQN | Pub. Date: 1/1/2014 | Genre: NA, Romance]
I am really pleasantly surprised by the variety I'm seeing in NA lately. At first it was a lot of the same old recycled plot lines (which is still happening, of course) but the ones I've mentioned here and I Want It That Way are stepping out of the mold. Nadia has moved into a new apartment with her best friend and two guy friends. She loves having a good time with them but more than anything, she's dedicated to keeping up her grades for her scholarship and pursuing a special education degree. That means between school and work, she shouldn't have time for Daniel Tyler (Ty), the hot neighbor in 1B. He's technically only a little bit older but Ty has got responsibilities far beyond his years. Like raising his 4 year old son as a single father, with only a little help from his own parents. So he's got a son, a job and night classes to worry about. It's not exactly a recipe for romance but it works. They're both mature for their ages and their chemistry is undeniable. They just fit and it showed in their interactions. If you want a book that's low on the angst but high on the romance, this is a great pick.


Did you read and enjoy these books as much as I did?
Or do you have any NA or romance recs for me? 
Let me know in the comments!

1 comment:

  1. I was grinning like crazy when I read your thoughts on Last Will and Testament and I Want It That Way! I loved both of those books as well, which surprised me because I honestly didn't really start loving NA until late last year. It's been so great seeing such unique stories being published and shared with the world! I can't wait to read the others, particularly the Cora Carmack series!

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