Listen to Me by Hannah Pittard

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source: free copy via AmazonVine
title: Listen to Me
author: Hannah Pittard
genre: psychological thriller
published: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (July 5, 2016)
pages: 191
first line: They were on the road later than they intended.
rated: misleading

Blurb:

A modern gothic about a marriage and road trip gone hauntingly awry.

Mark and Maggie’s annual drive east to visit family has gotten off to a rocky start. By the time they’re on the road, it’s late, a storm is brewing, and they are no longer speaking to one another. Adding to the stress, Maggie — recently mugged at gunpoint — is lately not herself, and Mark is at a loss about what to make of the stranger he calls his wife. When they are forced to stop for the night at a remote inn, completely without power, Maggie’s paranoia reaches an all-time and terrifying high. But when Mark finds himself threatened in a dark parking lot, it’s Maggie who takes control.

My Thoughts:
Okay, so I am upset. When I grabbed a copy of Listen to Me I expected a thrilling story, one I could enjoy on a cool Fall evening while sipping a cup of tea. What I discovered was that I wanted to throw the book across the room when I was done reading.

On one hand this was a quiet, tense story about a married couple who are beginning to doubt one another. On the other hand, I found this book to be falsely marketed, the blurb is misleading: “When they are forced to stop for the night at a remote inn, completely without power, Maggie’s paranoia reaches an all-time and terrifying high. But when Mark finds himself threatened in a dark parking lot, it’s Maggie who takes control.” This one is supposed to be a psychological thriller, I found nothing really thrilling about it and was upset with the turn the book took towards the end. It certainly is not a “modern gothic” as the blurb suggests. Come on people.

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Sweet Bliss by Helena Rac

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source: free review copy via NetGalley
title: Sweet Bliss
author: Helena Rac/Twitter
published: November 2015 Tryst Books
pages: 206
genre: Contemporary Romance
first line: This is going to be so freaking good.

Blurb:
From debut author Helena Rac, a sassy, sexy comic tale of second-chance romance and the many uses of icing. Tessa loves cupcakes. They’re tasty and comforting, and they’ve made her bakery a success. Men, on the other hand, are unreliable jerks who are bound to break her heart. Even if they’re hot enough to melt her frosting. Tessa is smitten with Luke after a less than graceful encounter on the streets of Chicago, and fate keeps reuniting them. She’s certain he’d be delicious in bed, but there’s just one problem: Tessa’s sworn off long-distance romances, and Luke lives in London. Besides, he’s proven himself to be bad news. Although Tessa’s sexy stranger swears to set aside his player ways after she carries out sweet revenge, she’s far too smart to believe in happily-ever-afters. Luke will need to use every weapon in his arsenal – including a spatula or two – to convince Tessa they’re meant to be together.

My Thoughts:
Hmmmmm…what can I say about Sweet Bliss.
This debut novel by Helena Rac was my first read of 2016.
The blurb intrigued me, the whole contemporary romance with a cupcake bakery theme sounded yummy. Pun intended.
I will say this review contains mild spoilers and some ranting as I really wanted to like this book more.

Tessa is in her late twenties and owns her own bakery in Chicago, cupcakes are her specialty. Her ex Jason abruptly dumped her three years ago so she has some trust issues she is still hanging onto. Her sister Clara is engaged to Marcus and Tessa will be the Maid of Honor.

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My Sweetest Escape (My Favorite Mistake Book 2) by Chelsea M. Cameron

sweetest
source: free review copy via Amazon Vine
title: My Sweetest Escape
author: Chelsea M. Cameron
pages: 363
genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
published: 2014
first line: I can’t believe your parents are forcing you to leave.

Blurb:
The past will always find you

Jos Archer was the girl with the perfect life—until the night it all came crashing down around her. Now, nine months later, she still hasn’t begun to pick up the pieces. Even transferring to a new college and living under the watchful eye of her older sister, Renee, isn’t enough to help her feel normal again.

And then she meets Dusty Sharp. For reasons Jos can’t begin to fathom, the newly reformed campus bad boy seems determined to draw her out of her shell. And if she’s not careful, his knowing green eyes and wicked smile will make her feel things she’s no longer sure she deserves.

But even as Dusty coaxes Jos to open up about the past, he’s hiding secrets of his own. Secrets about the night her old life fell apart. When the truth is finally revealed, will it bring them closer together—or tear them apart for good?

My thoughts:
My Sweetest Escape is second in the My Favorite Mistake series but can be read as a stand alone.

I recently read and reviewed another new adult contemporary called As Long As You Love Me and I could not help but the notice the similarities not only in regards to one of the main characters leaving one college to start over at another one, but also in the covers. Must be a new adult romance trend.
In this story, Joscelyn Archer suffers a traumatic event which had her spiraling downhill, drinking and using drugs and doing poorly in school. Her older sister Renee has Jos transfer to a college near her and live at her house, Yellowfield House, which she shares with close friends. Renee plans on looking after Jos and making sure she stays on the right path.

Renee is super watchful of Jos, almost mother-like and sometimes she’s really too much. She was just one the characters in this book who was overly dramatic.

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