George by Alex Gino

George by Alex GinoGeorge by Alex Gino
Published by Scholastic Inc. on August 25th 2015
Genres: Young Adult
Pages: 208
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BE WHO YOU ARE. When people look at George, they think they see a boy. But she knows she's not a boy. She knows she's a girl. George thinks she'll have to keep this a secret forever. Then her teacher announces that their class play is going to be Charlotte's Web. George really, really, REALLY wants to play Charlotte. But the teacher says she can't even try out for the part . . . because she's a boy.   With the help of her best friend, Kelly, George comes up with a plan. Not just so she can be Charlotte -- but so everyone can know who she is, once and for all.

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A Thousand Nights by E.K. Johnston

I received this book for free from Disney, Disney Hyperion in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

A Thousand Nights by E.K. JohnstonA Thousand Nights by E.K. Johnston
Published by Disney Hyperion on October 6th 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Fantasy & Magic, Fiction, Retelling, Young Adult
Pages: 336
Format: ARC, digital ARC
Source: Disney, Disney Hyperion
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Lo-Melkhiin killed three hundred girls before he came to her village, looking for a wife. When she sees the dust cloud on the horizon, she knows he has arrived. She knows he will want the loveliest girl: her sister. She vows she will not let her be next.
And so she is taken in her sister's place, and she believes death will soon follow. Lo-Melkhiin's court is a dangerous palace filled with pretty things: intricate statues with wretched eyes, exquisite threads to weave the most beautiful garments. She sees everything as if for the last time.But the first sun rises and sets, and she is not dead. Night after night, Lo-Melkhiin comes to her and listens to the stories she tells, and day after day she is awoken by the sunrise. Exploring the palace, she begins to unlock years of fear that have tormented and silenced a kingdom. Lo-Melkhiin was not always a cruel ruler. Something went wrong.
Far away, in their village, her sister is mourning. Through her pain, she calls upon the desert winds, conjuring a subtle unseen magic, and something besides death stirs the air.
Back at the palace, the words she speaks to Lo-Melkhiin every night are given a strange life of their own. Little things, at first: a dress from home, a vision of her sister. With each tale she spins, her power grows. Soon she dreams of bigger, more terrible magic: power enough to save a king, if she can put an end to the rule of a monster.

They were burning up, and they didn’t even know they were afire.

An elegantly written novel with a lovely story, A Thousand Nights is a book perfect for all readers looking for an engrossing read.

One StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star

The Life List by Lori Nelson Spielman

The Life List by Lori Nelson SpielmanThe Life List by Lori Nelson Spielman
Published by Bantam on July 2nd 2013
Genres: Love & Romance, Family, Friendship
Pages: 368
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In this utterly charming debut — one woman sets out to complete her old list of childhood goals, and finds that her lifelong dreams lead her down a path she never expects.
1. Go to Paris
2. Perform live, on a super big stage
3. Have a baby, maybe two
4. Fall in love
Brett Bohlinger has forgotten all about the list of life goals she’d written as a naïve teenager. In fact, at thirty-four, Brett seems to have it all—a plum job at her family’s multimillion-dollar company and a spacious loft with her irresistibly handsome boyfriend. But when her beloved mother, Elizabeth, dies, Brett’s world is turned upside down. Rather than simply naming her daughter the new CEO of Bohlinger Cosmetics, Elizabeth’s will comes with one big stipulation: Brett must fulfill the list of childhood dreams she made so long ago.
Grief-stricken, Brett can barely make sense of her mother’s decision. Some of her old hopes seem impossible. How can she possibly have a relationship with a father who died seven years ago? Other dreams (Be an awesome teacher!) would require her to reinvent her entire future. For each goal attempted, her mother has left behind a bittersweet letter, offering words of wisdom, warmth, and—just when Brett needs it—tough love.
As Brett struggles to complete her abandoned life list, one thing becomes clear: Sometimes life’s sweetest gifts can be found in the most unexpected places.

Welcome to The Book Geek’s monthly feature, affectionately called The Genre Spotlight. It’s where we explore and choose one of the myriad genres. We’ll showcase it by having each Book Geek read and review at least one, but possibly a few books belonging to that month’s chosen genre. 
We’re hoping to expand our reading horizons to genre’s we haven’t or have barely read, and, hopefully, usher in gems our lives have been missing out on.
For sizzling August, our spotlight is on Romance. 

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Sustained by Emma Chase

Sustained by Emma ChaseSustained (The Legal Briefs, #2) by Emma Chase
Published by Gallery Books on August 25th 2015
Genres: Family, Love & Romance, Romance
Pages: 272
Format: ARC, digital ARC
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A knight in tarnished armor is still a knight.
When you’re a defense attorney in Washington, DC, you see firsthand how hard life can be, and that sometimes the only way to survive is to be harder. I, Jake Becker, have a reputation for being cold, callous, and intimidating—and that suits me just fine. In fact, it’s necessary when I’m breaking down a witness on the stand.
Complications don’t work for me—I’m a “need-to-know” type of man. If you’re my client, tell me the basic facts. If you’re my date, stick to what will turn you on. I’m not a therapist or Prince Charming—and I don’t pretend to be.
Then Chelsea McQuaid and her six orphaned nieces and nephews came along and complicated the ever-loving hell out of my life. Now I'm going to Mommy & Me classes, One Direction concerts, the emergency room, and arguing cases in the principal's office.
Chelsea’s too sweet, too innocent, and too gorgeous for her own good. She tries to be tough, but she’s not. She needs someone to help her, defend her…and the kids.
And that — that, I know how to do.

Emma Chase has topped herself. I never thought I’d say this but I loved Sustained more than Tangled, and that’s saying a lot. In my opinion it’s been a rather mediocre year for romances. There have been several 2015 releases I’ve enjoyed, but only a handful that I’ve absolutely loved. And even then there’s usually something I find fault with. Maybe there’s a dreaded case of insta-love in the beginning. The ending is too rushed. The plot is a bit too predictable. You get the picture. But this book? I wouldn’t change a thing about this book. It’s absolute perfection and my favorite book of 2015 so far.

One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Follow You Home by Mark Edwards

Follow You Home by Mark EdwardsFollow You Home by Mark Edwards
Published by Thomas & Mercer on June 30th 2015
Genres: Death & Dying, Depression & Mental Illness, Mystery & Thriller
Pages: 381
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It was supposed to be the trip of a lifetime, a final adventure before settling down.
After a perfect start, Daniel and Laura’s travels end abruptly when they are thrown off a night train in the middle of nowhere. To find their way back to civilisation, they must hike along the tracks through a forest…a haunting journey that ends in unimaginable terror.
Back in London, Daniel and Laura vow never to talk about what they saw that night. But as they try to fit back into their old lives, it becomes clear that their nightmare is just beginning…
Follow You Home is a chilling tale of secrets, lies and deadly consequences from the author of #1 bestsellers The Magpies and Because She Loves Me.

I need to read more psychological thrillers!
It’s funny because I had just finished reading a traditional romance story for the Genre Spotlight feature and wasn’t sure if I wanted to grab another one (then I saw some titles in the Kindle store and just couldn’t do it), but I did want something contemporary-ish. I normally never go to the Kindle store when I’m looking for books, but I was already in bed and decided to take a walk on the wild side.
For I am a rebel.
description

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Unblocked – Episode Five by Marni Mann

Unblocked – Episode Five by Marni MannUnblocked - Episode Five (Timber Towers Series Book 5) by Marni Mann
Published by Booktrope on August 19th 2015
Genres: Erotica, Love & Romance, Romance
Format: ARC, digital ARC
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Derek Block needs to protect those he cares about.
Frankie Jordan fears the loss of those she loves.
Darkness drives them.
But could it drive them apart?
This is Episode Five, the final Episode in the Timber Towers Series.

This is the 5th and final episode in the Tower Timbers series and it’s hard to say goodbye to these characters I’ve grown to love. Derek Block has been an unexpected dirty talking fantasy inducer from the very first book. Who knew I’d find flannel so sexy or that I’d be shopping for a pink ivory door? Frankie is one lucky lady. But I digress.

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat

Captive Prince by C.S. PacatCaptive Prince by C. S. Pacat
Published by Penguin on January 28th 2014
Genres: Romance, Fantasy
Pages: 209
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Damen is a warrior hero to his people, and the rightful heir to the throne of Akielos, but when his half brother seizes power, Damen is captured, stripped of his identity, and sent to serve the prince of an enemy nation as a pleasure slave.Beautiful, manipulative and deadly, his new master Prince Laurent epitomizes the worst of the court at Vere. But in the lethal political web of the Veretian court, nothing is as it seems, and when Damen finds himself caught up in a play for the throne, he must work together with Laurent to survive and save his country.For Damen, there is just one rule: never, ever reveal his true identity. Because the one man Damen needs is the one man who has more reason to hate him than anyone else . . .

Welcome to The Book Geek’s monthly feature, affectionately called The Genre Spotlight. It’s where we explore and choose one of the myriad genres. We’ll showcase it by having each Book Geek read and review at least one, but possibly a few books belonging to that month’s chosen genre.
We’re hoping to expand our reading horizons to genre’s we haven’t or have barely read, and, hopefully, usher in gems our lives have been missing out on.
For sizzling August, our spotlight is on Romance.

Shadow Music by Julie Garwood

Shadow Music by Julie GarwoodShadow Music by Julie Garwood
Published by Ballantine Books on December 26th 2007
Genres: Romance
Pages: 339
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For Princess Gabrielle of St. Biel, Scotland is a land of stunning vistas, wild chieftains, treacherous glens, and steep shadows--skullduggery, betrayal, and now murder. Prized for her exquisite beauty, the daughter of one of England's most influential barons, Gabrielle is also a perfect bargaining chip for a king who needs peace in the Highlands: King John has arranged Gabrielle's marriage to a good and gentle laird. But this marriage will never take place.
For Gabrielle, everything changes in one last burst of freedom--when she and her guards come upon a scene of unimaginable cruelty. With one shot from her bow and arrow, Gabrielle takes a life, saves a life, and begins a war.
Within days, the Highlands are aflame with passions as a battle royal flares between enemies old and new. Having come to Scotland to be married, Gabrielle is instead entangled in Highland intrigue. For two sadistic noblemen, underestimating Gabrielle's bravery and prowess may prove fatal. But thanks to a secret Gabrielle possesses, Colm MacHugh, the most feared man in Scotland, finds a new cause for courage. Under his penetrating gaze, neither Gabrielle's body nor heart is safe.

Welcome to The Book Geek’s monthly feature, affectionately called The Genre Spotlight. It’s where we explore and choose one of the myriad genres. We’ll showcase it by having each Book Geek read and review at least one, but possibly a few books belonging to that month’s chosen genre.

We’re hoping to expand our reading horizons to genre’s we haven’t or have barely read, and, hopefully, usher in gems our lives have been missing out on.

For sizzling August, our spotlight is on Romance.

One StarOne StarOne Star

The Lessons by Elizabeth Brown

The Lessons by Elizabeth BrownThe Lessons (Forbidden, #1) by Elizabeth Brown
on July 20th 2015
Genres: Dating & Sex, Erotica, Romance
Pages: 344
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Things weren’t exactly going according to my Plan, so I did what most Americans do when confronted with a problem : I hired someone else to fix it.
Except ‘it’ was my virginity.
And that ‘someone else’ was a sex surrogate.
I should have known the answer wouldn’t be that simple.
----------
The Lessons is a standalone forbidden-love romance told from dual POV with no cliffhanger.
Warning: This story contains mature humor, a lot of cursing, and of course, sexual situations. It is intended for adult readers who enjoy that kind of thing.
Stand-alone book 1 in The Forbidden series.

I’m filing this one under “Must Just Be Me” because it seems to be getting good reviews but it just didn’t work for me. I had so many issues with this book I’m not even sure where to begin. I guess I’ll start with what I did like. Natalie and Ryan are really likeable characters and their chemistry is great. I loved the humor. And… that’s about it.

One StarOne Star

Unveiled by Courtney Milan

Unveiled by Courtney MilanUnveiled (Turner, #1) by Courtney Milan
Published by HQN Books on January 25th 2011
Genres: Historical Fiction, Romance
Pages: 384
Goodreads

He was her bitterest enemy...Ash Turner has waited a lifetime to seek revenge on the man who ruined his family, and at last the time for justice has arrived. At Parford Manor, he intends to take his place as the rightful heir to the dukedom, and settle an old score with the current duke once and for all. But when he arrives, he finds himself drawn to a tempting beauty who has the power to undo all his dreams of vengeance.And her dearest love.Lady Margaret knows she should despise the man who’s stolen her fortune and her father’s legacy—the man she’s been ordered to spy on in the guise of a nurse. Yet the more she learns about the new duke, the less she can resist his smoldering appeal. Soon Margaret and Ash find themselves torn between old loyalties—and the tantalizing promise of passion...

Welcome to The Book Geek’s monthly feature, affectionately called The Genre Spotlight. It’s where we explore and choose one of the myriad genres. We’ll showcase it by having each Book Geek read and review at least one, but possibly a few books belonging to that month’s chosen genre.
We’re hoping to expand our reading horizons to genre’s we haven’t or have barely read, and, hopefully, usher in gems our lives have been missing out on.
For sizzling August, our spotlight is on Romance (aka my nemesis).
Let me start off with this: I don’t want to hate romance, but dammit if romance doesn’t make it so darn easy. I want to love it. I want to find romance that’s worth reading. I truly don’t set out to shit on it, but then I read things like this:

He’d known he wanted her in his bed. But he was beginning to realize that he wanted more. He wanted to rid her of those lines around her eyes. He wanted to soothe the clench of her fists. He wanted to draw her to him, as gently as he could. And once he had her there…

Unveiled by Courtney Milan
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