Category «Features»

Top Ten Tuesdays: Must Read Tropes in Books

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Top Ten Tuesdays: Is a weekly meme feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where bloggers post their Top 10 List for an assigned topic! I will not be participating every week, but I will occasionally take a shot at it! You can always find these lists (past, present and original) on my Riffle Page!

This Week’s Topic:

Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A Book

I always mention my must-read tropes when I write reviews on books with the theme but I’ve never complied a list in one place. So I was excited for the chance to list them all together!

(In no particular order):

Forbidden Love

I LOVE stories where two people who shouldn’t be together can’t help but fall in love. The sexual tension is always brimming to the surface and the “will-they-won’t-they” moments get me every time.

Favourite:

Queen of Blood

Check out some of my other favourite forbidden love reads!

Fake Relationships

I’m one of those romance readers who likes her relationships to be based on a strong emotional connection in addition to passion and I find I get that 95% of the time in fake relationship stories. I find these leads talk more often than their lust-driven counterparts and so the relationship is easily established and obvious to me. Plus, you get some great sexual tension along the way!

Favourite:

One Week Girlfriend (One Week Girlfriend, #1)

Check out some of my favourite fake/arranged relationships reads!

Enemies to Lovers

I suppose you could associate this trope with forbidden love but I like to think of this as a subdivision of that trope. Often these two can’t even fathom a relationship and then something happens to change their minds. Again, I feel like the emotional connections are stronger as these characters learn more about each other. Through this, they see how similar they are then different and what great partners they would be.

Favourite:

Lace Up

Check out some of my other favourite enemies to lover (1) and/or hate to love you (2) reads!

Unorthodox Relationships

I’m not talking about forbidden love like teacher-student relationships; I’m talking about romances between characters who aren’t often the leads in romances. Like porn stars or falling for your mom’s younger boyfriend. I like that fiction is an outlet to explore these situations we don’t encounter in real life (and hopefully generate a discussion on why society feels the way it does about the topic).

Favourites:

Porn Star (P*rn Star, #1) and Forbidden

Check out some of my other favourite “taboo” reads!

In Love with Rockstars/Musicians

Musician bad boys are my kryptonite! Who doesn’t fantasize about your fave musician noticing you in the crowd and wanting to be yours forever? Swoon!

But another reason I love band-based stories is the fact that you follow a band! You follow a cast of characters as they pursue their dreams and fall in love. It’s so easy to get attached to the characters!

Favourite:

Mayhem (Mayhem, #1)

Check out some of my other favourite rocktar reads!

Love Games

I kept that heading a little broad because there are two love games I love: 1) trying to hurt the player and 2) trying to get someone else to notice you. Now both of these could be found in other tropes ( 1- players falling in love and 2- fake relationships) but I do think they are a separate category. Again, I enjoy the partnerships and unexpected connections these characters experience as they plot to achieve what they initial think is best for them.

Favourite:

Crushed (Redemption, #2)

Check out some of my other favourite love game reads!

Imperial Russia

This probably isn’t a trope, more of a setting, but it does have certain tropes associated with it like the supernatural elements and royalty. I adore the rich culture of Imperial Russia and I always enjoy the unique approaches author’s take when using this setting.

Favourite:

The Gathering Storm (Katerina, #1)

Check out some of my other favourite Imperial Russian reads!

Shakespeare

I’m a HUGE Shakespeare fan. (I’m one of those people who willingly took a Shakespeare elective in university). It’s a personal lifetime goal to try to read and see all of his plays before I die.

So naturally, I adore any retelling or story that alludes to his work. You can do so much with Shakespeare’s works and the interpretations of it and I love uncovering it.

Favourites:

Wondrous Strange (Wondrous Strange, #1) or Bad Romeo (Starcrossed, #1)

Check out some of my other favourite Shakespeare reads!

Faeries

There are a few things I like about faeries. I like that they have the “honesty” policy and how you can never trust them. I like the magic of them and their world (and how it is so unique from story to story). They usually have a lot of action and often have political intrigue too. Throw in some forbidden love and centuries of unrest and you have everything a story needs to be entertaining!

Favourite:

The Iron King (The Iron Fey, #1)

Check out some of my other favourite faerie reads!

The Jackass Player Falls in Love

While I don’t enjoy like asshole dudes in real life, I have a huge soft spot for them in my romance reads. I think it’s their confidence that draws me in and seeing that confidence shatter when they meet the perfect girl that challenges them in a way they never expected. I just love seeing them put in their place!

Favourite:

The Deal (Off-Campus, #1)


What tropes have you coming back for more?

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Leave a Link to your TTT in the comments below!

SERIESous Discussion: How “Adulting” Changed My Reading Habits

Since I started my blog in 2013, I’ve been an academic student. Whether it was as an undergrad degree or completing my post-graduate schooling, I’ve only ever talked about my experiences reading from the perspective of a student. And now that I am finally “adulting” and starting the career that I’ve worked so hard for over the last few years, I’ve noticed quite a few changes to how I read. Below, I’m going to talk a bit about what these changes are and how learned to adapt to them.

Problem #1: Bye-Bye Morning Reading Session

Solution: Workout Instead

I’m a morning person so getting up early has never been a problem. Part of the reason I was able to read so many books in the past is due to the fact that I would get up earlier than I needed to so I could devour some pages. Getting that extra 20-60 minutes really helped me read books faster.

But now, I’m more pressed for time in the morning and simply can’t afford to “just read one more chapter”. I need to be somewhere at a specific time and the time it takes to read one chapter can vary from book to book. So my solution was to find something that had a set time-frame and so I decided to do my workout routines instead. Now, when I get home, I don’t have to dread working out and can instead reward myself by reading.

Problem #2: A Total Commute of 2 Hours Every Day

Solution: Listen to Audiobooks!

Commuting longer than 10 minutes is quite the change for me. It would be different if I was taking public transit because I would just read but I have to drive myself 1 hour each way. So I can’t really read while I drive and my voice can’t take me singing for 2 hours every day either 😉

Before I started my job, I used to just listen to nonfiction audiobooks. I had never listened to a fiction audiobook and so I decided it was worth a shot. I’m really glad I did because it is a great way to pass the time and I actually feel like I did something productive while I drive.

Problem #3: I Moved Back Home

Solution: Set A Reading Time.

I’m really lucky that I am able to move back home for my job. It’s saving me a lot of money which is great. But it is also a big change because I’ve lived on my own for the last 3 years. It’s so easy when you live alone to just read a book all day and not feel guilty but now that I live with other people again, I have more of a social life!

Now I make sure that I go to bed at a set time (which is hard to do when you work shift-work), usually 30 minutes before I want to sleep, so I can read a few chapters before I fall asleep.


These definitely aren’t “problems”, they’re simply changes to my everyday habits that I’ve formed over the last 6 years. I always try to seize every opportunity when it comes to reading (you can see some of my tips here) and that’s what I have to do here as well. It’s just really hard to change your every day habits.

Anyone else struggle with transitioning from student to functioning adult?

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#ShelfLove Discussion: What Books Have Collected the Most Dust?

One of the main reasons I picked the #ShelfLove Challenge this year was the seasonal discussions it had. It’s a fun aspect and one I think will help keep the challenge fresh throughout the year for me.

Top Unread Books That Have Been On Your Shelf the Longest

Bring on the shame!

For this topic, I decided to break it down in a few different ways. The #ShelfLove Challenge is all about books I’ve purchased over the years and, right now, I have 3 “sources” so to speak. I have the books I buy for my Kobo, my Kindle and for my physical bookshelf. So I’ll be sharing some of those below:

Physical Bookshelf

Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception (Books of Faerie, #1)

Publishing Date: October 2008  |  Date Purchased: Before 2010

This is one of those classic cases where I bought the book and then read a completely different series by that author first. I originally bought Lament because it was a faerie story and I adore those. But since then, I’ve read two series by Stiefvater and had mixed feelings on them. I’m not sure if this book will survive my cleaning purge but we will see.

The Time Traveler's Wife

Publishing Date: 2003  |  Date Purchased: 2009

Back when I was still buying physical books, this one was on sale for $5. I remember the movie had either just been released or was just about to be so I figured why not? I’ve actually loaned this out to at least 2 people and have yet to read it for myself.

Kobo Bookshelf

Love Struck

Publishing Date: 2011|  Date Purchased: December 26, 2011

Probably the most embarrassing one on this list because this novella is a total of 53 pages. I adored Melissa Marr’s Wicked Lovely Series so it was a no brainer to pick this one up during a Boxing Day sale. Hopefully I can find the 30 minutes it will take to read it this summer…

Stolen Away

Publishing Date: January 2012|  Date Purchased: February 7, 2012

Alyxandra Harvey is yet another author I adored as a teen and had to pick up during a sale. Surprise, surprise it’s about faeries! I’ve currently marked it as a “no-go” for now but I’ll probably attempt it in this summer because faeries are something I can’t resist for too long.

Kindle Bookshelf

Possessed by You (Torn, #1)

Publishing Date: May 2014 |  Date Purchased: September 2014

I actually bought the trilogy boxset when it was on sale for $1. I think at the time I was on an adult erotica/contemporary kick and I liked the deal. I’m not sure if I will ever get around to it but I’ll definitely give it a try.

Typist #1, Working for the Billionaire Novelist (Billionaire Novelist #1)

Publishing Date: November 2012 |  Date Purchased: November 2014

For some reason, I was able to get Books 2-4 for free and decided it was an interesting enough concept to get the first book which was only $1. They’re novellas so I think they will make perfect summer reads.


I’m sure you noticed a trend of “I’m not sure if I’ll read it but I’ll try”. Truthfully, a lot of these I’ve marked as pass on my TBR this year because I’m trying to reduce the number of books on my Goodreads “Want to Read” list. The idea was, if I’ve gone 5+ years without reading them, then I don’t need to hold on. But honestly, I’m such a mood-reader that I can never say never.

Have you read any of these? What’s your oldest TBR item?

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Blog Tour: Forever (Friends #3) by Monica Murphy

Synopsis for Forever (from Goodreads):

She’s all I could ever want…

I have a reputation around school. Cold. Untouchable. Unfeeling. Only one girl could ever make me want to change and that’s Amanda Winters. Too bad I broke her heart and drove her away.

So to get through the rest of my days in high school, I tell myself I need to focus on more important things. Like taking our football team to championships. Get accepted to the college of my choice. And finish my senior year without wanting to run away from my problems.

But your problems chase after you no matter where you go. And it’s a lot harder when you fight them alone. The longer I go without Amanda, the more I miss her. Her smile. Her laughter. The things she said. How she looked at me like I was the only person who mattered. The way she made me feel…

Why can’t I have everything, including the girl? I’m determined to make things right. And make Amanda mine…

Forever.

Other books in the series:

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SERIESous’ Top Picks: Must Read Author
Series: Friends
Author: Monica Murphy (aka Karen Erickson)
# of Books: 3 (Just Friends, More than Friends, Forever)

There is a prequel novella called One Night.

Book Order: Chronological
Complete?: Unsure
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary
Heat Rating: warm *spicy YA*
Point of View: First Person, Alternating
Publication Date: September 2016 – April 2017
Source & Format: Social Butterfly PR–eARC

Add: Goodreads | Buy: Amazon // Barnes & Noble // iBooks // Kobo

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Full Series Review Found Here!

My Expectations:

I went through a major book hangover after I finished More Than Friends in December. I couldn’t even handle the wait for Forever and eagerly awaited its release. Easily one of my most anticipated sequels this year!

I was excited to see how Jordan and Amanda’s story would wrap up and see what everyone else in the story was up to.

My Review:

These two are just the cutest; Tuttle especially. His crush/love just warms my heart. It’s been a long time since I’ve fallen in love with a male hero in a story. Swoon!

It was also just as addicting as More Than Friends. I honestly couldn’t put it down because I needed to know what happened next!

I was really torn on what rating to give this book. While I loved this story and the characters, I was a little let down in the plot.

The whole reason we get this book is because these two have some unresolved issues that they need to work out. I went into this book excited to learn more about Tuttle’s character and see how he would open up to let Amanda in. Unfortunately, this aspect fell flat for me here in this book. We don’t get to uncover more about Tuttle than we already know and this story just goes through the motions of everyday life. Which is fine because I love anything with these two together but I just wanted that touch of depth to take that story to the next level. These two develop as characters in other ways but I wanted to see Tuttle grow that little bit more.

Regardless, I was more than satisfied with the story and everything that happens.

Read an Excerpt!

My Rating: 4/5

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Fans will be more than satisfied with this installment! It has all the drama and teenage angst a fan could want!

Read if You Like: teen angst, love triangles, YA contemporary
Avoid if You: dislike slow stories, want more romance

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Monica Murphy

Monica Murphy is the New York Times, USA Today and #1 international bestselling author of the One Week Girlfriend series, the Billionaire Bachelors and The Rules series. Her books have been translated in almost a dozen languages and has sold over one million copies worldwide. She is both self-published and published by Random House/Bantam and Harper Collins/Avon. She writes new adult, young adult and contemporary romance.

She is a wife and a mother of three who lives in central California on fourteen acres in the middle of nowhere along with their one dog and too many cats. A self-confessed workaholic, when she’s not writing, she’s reading or hanging out with her husband and kids. She’s a firm believer in happy endings, though she will admit to putting her characters through angst-filled moments before they finally get that hard won HEA.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Find out why everyone wants to #cuddlewithtuttle!

Full Series Review Found Here!

Add: Goodreads | Buy: Amazon // Barnes & Noble // iBooks // Kobo

Book Tour Organised by:

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Release Blitz: Forever by Monica Murphy

After I devoured More than Friends in December, I was dying for the next installment in the Friends Series, Forever.

So I was ECSTATIC when I was able to be a part of the launch for Forever and get a chance to read it a little early. It’s (obviously) fabulous and just as addicting as its predecessor.

You can find my full review of the series here!

My review of Forever will be posted on April 6th.


Title: Forever

Genre: Young Adult, Romance
Author: Monica Murphy
Publishing Date: April 4, 2017
Publisher: EM Publishing
Format: Mass Market Paperback & eBook
Find it:Goodreads | Kobo | Amazon

She’s all I could ever want…

I have a reputation around school. Cold. Untouchable. Unfeeling. Only one girl could ever make me want to change and that’s Amanda Winters. Too bad I broke her heart and drove her away.

So to get through the rest of my days in high school, I tell myself I need to focus on more important things. Like taking our football team to championships. Get accepted to the college of my choice. And finish my senior year without wanting to run away from my problems.

But your problems chase after you no matter where you go. And it’s a lot harder when you fight them alone. The longer I go without Amanda, the more I miss her. Her smile. Her laughter. The things she said. How she looked at me like I was the only person who mattered. The way she made me feel…

Why can’t I have everything, including the girl? I’m determined to make things right. And make Amanda mine…

Forever.

Read an excerpt:

I’m walking through the senior parking lot when I spot Jordan standing near his black Range Rover, leaning against its side. He’s wearing a white Henley shirt, his arms crossed and his biceps bulging beneath the long sleeves. The breeze ruffles his dark hair across his forehead and he stares off into the distance, every inch the troubled, broody boy that he is.

He looks so freaking good, I’m momentarily distracted by him. I stop and stare, my lips parted, my breath becoming shallow. It’s still hard for me to believe that this guy, this gorgeous, sweet, annoying, smart, strong, wonderful, awful boy likes me. That he might even care about me.

“Hey.” His deep baritone knocks me from my daze, and I head over, stopping just in front of him. “Where’s Livvy?”

“She made last minute plans. With someone else.” I don’t say anything else. Livvy’s secret isn’t mine to tell, and I’m afraid if I start talking about it, I’ll get really pissed. So I leave it alone. “Guess I don’t need to drive your car after all, but thank you for offering. I sense it was huge deal.”

“It is,” he agrees, tipping his head toward me. “But you’re worth it.”

Oh. He says things like that and I’m left speechless.

“You don’t have any plans?”

“No.” I shake my head, feeling tongue-tied.

Jordan grabs my hand, lacing our fingers and giving them a squeeze. “Then let’s go to lunch together.”

“Don’t you want to stay here?” He usually does. He’s always out at the quad, holding court over his loyal subjects. I used to sit out there with him, with all of them, just basking in his presence. But once we had the so-called breakup of our so-called relationship, I stopped going. One, because I couldn’t stand to be near him knowing he wasn’t mine anymore. Besides, most everyone who would hang out with Tuttle is annoying. Frustrating. Awful.

All of the above.

“No, not if I can sneak off campus somewhere with you.” He tugs me closer, his expression serious, his voice low. “Let me treat you to lunch, Amanda.”

When he talks to me like that, looks at me like that, I tend to give in easily.

“Okay,” I say softly, a jolt pulsing through me when he runs his thumb over the top of my hand. Sometimes the simplest touch has the most devastating effect.

Add: Goodreads | Buy: Amazon // Barnes & Noble // iBooks // Kobo

Monica Murphy

Monica Murphy is the New York Times, USA Today and #1 international bestselling author of the One Week Girlfriend series, the Billionaire Bachelors and The Rules series. Her books have been translated in almost a dozen languages and has sold over one million copies worldwide. She is both self-published and published by Random House/Bantam and Harper Collins/Avon. She writes new adult, young adult and contemporary romance.

She is a wife and a mother of three who lives in central California on fourteen acres in the middle of nowhere along with their one dog and too many cats. A self-confessed workaholic, when she’s not writing, she’s reading or hanging out with her husband and kids. She’s a firm believer in happy endings, though she will admit to putting her characters through angst-filled moments before they finally get that hard won HEA.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Find out why everyone wants to #cuddlewithtuttle!

Full Series Review Found Here!

What about you? Are you excited?

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SERIESous Discussion: What Makes a Book Reread Worthy?

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SERIESous Discussions: Every once and awhile I will post my random ramblings about a bookish or blogging topic. Feel free to join in by making a comment below or linking back!


If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.

~Oscar Wilde

Now who am I to disagree with the great Oscar Wilde?

(Well, I do. But I digress…for now.)

I was inspired to write this post after reading numerous other discussion posts on why people reread books. As someone who rarely rereads books, I have to admit that I was a little surprised by the number of people who do reread on a regular basis. If I do reread a book, it’s books simply to remember what happened in the previous novel, not just for the sake of revisiting a world.

Now, that isn’t to say that I don’t have some books I wouldn’t mind rereading. In the last two years, I’ve started to accumulate physical copies of my favourite series. Because I mostly eRead and/or borrow books from the library, if I do find a series I particularly love, I want it on hand. I want to be able to share it with friends and family…maybe even my future kids one day.

So what makes you want to pick up a book again?

For me, I have two main criteria: characters and the plot.

The series that I have on my shelf have some of my favourite characters ever. They made me laugh, they made me swoon and they probably made me cry. Basically, they made me feel a variety of emotions while I was reading. I love when that happens.  These characters feel like family to me and I couldn’t imagine my reading life without them.

Personal Examples: The Mortal Instruments  |  Vampire Academy

I think it goes without saying that when you reread books, you’ll probably catch things you missed the first time around. This is especially true in series that have intricate, overarching plots where things are constantly building as you read. I love books with complicated plots and I can’t wait to reread these bad boys again to appreciate their stellar writing.

Personal Examples: The Winner’s Trilogy  |  Rook

Now, I do have to give a special shout out to those books that just make you happy. These are the books that you go back to simply for the fact that they can cheer you up and make you smile.

Personal Examples: Victoria and the Rogue  |  Never Love a Highlander

To go back to the quote from Oscar Wilde, I have to say that I disagree. I may never read that book again, but if I enjoyed it, I don’t consider it a waste of time. It’s the same situation with movies and TV shows. You’ll develop your favourites that you will constantly return to. But in between those favourites, you’ll watch entertaining pieces that you will appreciate for what they are in that moment and there is nothing wrong with that.

So what makes a book reread worthy to you?

What are some of your go-to rereads?

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SERIESous Spoilers: The Midnight Star

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SERIESous Spoilers: A feature where we discuss what happened in our favourite (or maybe not so favourite) books. Did you like the plot changes? The romance? What surprised you? What angered you? And what do you think will happen next?

This month’s SERIESous Spoilers Pick:

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu| The Young Elites Trilogy

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–Enzo’s Death–

Was I the only one who thought this moment would have a bigger impact? This was one of the only things I felt that was rushed in this novel. Enzo was such a huge character in the first book and while his role was reduced in the second novel, I just felt that his death should have a bigger impact on Adelina as a character in the grande scheme of things.

–The Ending–

I really don’t know how else you could have ended this without Adelina dying. While I’m all for anti-heroes being redeemed, I think a HEA for her would have been a bit of a sellout for her. So this worked for me–though I was worried for a minute that we were going to get her back into the world of the living.

–How the Title Works for the Story–

This was the only title I couldn’t figure out for the longest time. Why “midnight star”. But that whole bit at the end was just brilliant. I love how everything was tied up by a simple page of writing.

What are your thoughts? Agree or disagree? What are you looking forward to the most in the next book?

Please leave a comment below!

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Tag it Thursdays: R.I.P. or Ship Tag

tagitthurs
Tag it Thursdays: I occasionally get tagged by fellow bloggers to complete various tags. Once a month I will post my response. Please, feel free to tag yourself if any of these tags interest you!


This month’s tag:

R.I.P. or Ship Tag

So I know the officially holiday for romance was two days ago, but when you create a tag feature that can only be done on Thursdays, you just have to post things on that day of the week. So keeping with the theme of love, I decided to do this tag.

When I saw this tag on Em @ Em’s Book Corner last year, I wanted to give it a shot. It’s originally created by Booktuber emmmabooks.

The idea: you choose characters from the books of your choice, write down their names and put them in a jar. Then you pull out two names and decide whether or not you like (“ship”) or dislike (“R.I.P.”) the new relationship.

For my tag, I used 10 books that I’ve marked on Goodreads as my “fav couples” ever. I figured if any character has a shot with another random character, its the one half of my favourite couple/friend combo ever.

1–Lily (Touch Me Not) & Devi (Porn Star)

When I first pulled these two ladies out, I thought: OH the irony. See Lily has an issue being touched and Devi makes money by being in pornography videos–pretty polar opposites. But part of Lily’s journey in Touch Me Not is to be comfortable touching another person, so who better than Devi? Devi has great self-confidence and I think she would be a fantastic influence on Lily. And can probably give her some nice tips on how to handle her new relationship in more ways than one.

Verdict: friendSHIP

2–Drew (Tangled) & Haley (Until It’s Right)

Drew needs someone who can put him in his place but still appreciate his charms and I don’t think that is Haley. Haley is a nice girl but doesn’t quite have that self-confidence (yet) that Drew requires.

Verdict: R.I.P.

3–Dmitri (Vampire Academy) & Chloe (Crushed)

Haha what a combo! At first, I was a hard NO with these two but I could definitely see Chloe giving Dmitri a piece of her mind when the occasion calls for it. Dmitri is a pretty intimidating guy but I don’t think that would stop Chloe from being honest with him. Oh, but don’t forget that Dmitri is technically part vampire so…

Verdict: R.I.P.

4–Dylan (Schooled) & Sophia (Rook)

I’m not even going to elaborate on this one. Dylan wouldn’t be able to handle Sophia and her scheming, mysterious lifestyle and Sophia wouldn’t like Dylan’s straightforward approach to life and relationships.

Verdict: R.I.P.

5–Logan (Porn Star) & Lola (Dark Wild Night)

Oh, this has potential! Both Logan and Lola know what is means to have a missed connection that they know could be more. My only concern would be the Lola couldn’t handle what Logan does for a living and seeing him around other girls on a regular basis so unfortunately:

Verdict: R.I.P.

6–Michael (Crushed) & Kate (Tangled)

This could actually really work! Kate has great self-confidence and is a lot of fun. Michael is a little scorned but I think Kate could mend his broken heart.

Verdict: relationSHIP

7–Dean (Hopeless) & Alexis (Schooled)

I really like this one! Dean is a very patient guy and so, so sweet. Sure he has a bit of a reputation but underneath, he’s a keeper! Alexis is determined to succeed and she is very understanding. I think she could see past Dean’s reputation and they could be great together…if their ages were closer.

Verdict: relationSHIP

8–Rose (Vampire Academy) & René (Rook)

I kinda like this one. Rose can handle a life of adventure and scheming–I mean that’s what happens all the time in Vampire Academy. René reminds me a bit of Adrian who I thought had great chemistry with Rose throughout the VA series. René exudes confidence, has a bit of mystery and is very intelligent. Their relationship would be fast and furious I think but perhaps not long lasting.

Verdict: relationSHIP

9–Oliver (Dark Wild Night) & Kyle (Until It’s Right)

What a great match! These two would hit if off I think. Both are nerdy, slightly geeky guys who are just super nice!

Verdict: friendSHIP

10—Sky (Hopeless) & Nikoli (Touch Me Not)

At first, this was a no-go for me. But I see an older Dean (Hopeless) when I think about Nikoli. Sure, he as a reputation but throughout Touch Me Not he showed that he has a heart of gold and can be patient when he needs to be. So I think he really could help Sky navigate her life…if they were the right age.

Verdict: relationSHIP


What do you think about my pairings?

Please Tag Yourself and Link Back for me to read!

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Perfect Match: Winter 2017 Edition

theprefectmatch

Winter 2017 Edition

The Perfect Match: A seasonal feature where I play matchmaker but with books! What happens when you take Book A and combine it with Book B? The answer is Book C!

Happy Valentines Day! 

For this season’s edition of the perfect match, I thought I would keep it heavy on the romantic side of things. So here are some of my favourite romance combinations:

Why This Match?

While Dirty English is a modern retelling of Pride and Prejudice, I couldn’t help but find links to some more modern reads. The heroes in both Beautiful Disaster and Dirty English are fighters who have player-like reputations outside of the ring. But all it takes is a one night encounter with the girl who will change it all for them. But the relationship that forms between Elizabeth and Delcan in Dirty English reminded me a lot of the one in Losing It: where these two people have this great connection from the start that is more intellectual and emotion than just physical.

Why This Match?

As the title of The List implies, Annie (our heroine) is set out to do a list of things she thinks every college girl needs to do know that she is out of the house from her protective family. Bianca from All the Ways You Saved Me also has a list of things she wants to do left to her from her deceased BFF before she does her family’s plans for her. That’s how she Ian and Ian reminded me a lot of the hero from Confess, Owen. Both are super nice guys but both are hiding major secrets from their new lady friend.

Why This Match?

It’s been a long time since a book made me laugh out loud as much as Tangled did but The Matchmaker’s Playbook definitely succeeded. There’s just something so charming (and hilarious) about seeing a guy who thinks he knows it all get kicked on his ass by the girl who is his perfect match. But the concept of The Matchmaker’s Playbook–transforming a girl to get the guy of her dreams”–reminded me a lot of Crushed. I love when plans backfire!

Agree or Disagree with my picks?

Feel free to suggest some of your own in the comments below!

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Service Review: Kobo Super Points Program

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**This is in no way affiliated with Kobo or Kobo Super Points! It is simply my take on using the service over the last year!**

I was really excited when Kobo announced they were starting a rewards program last year. My Kobo is my main eReader; I just use my Kindle for review copies. So when I have a book that I really want to buy, I purchase it for my Kobo. (Unless it is an Amazon/Kindle exclusive, but that is another story). That means, every year, Kobo gets a lot of my money and the idea that I would be getting some of that back, made me really happy!

At first, I was going just keep the regular program (which is free) but the idea of getting an additional 10%, a free book and double the points (all for the low price of $10/year) had me wanting to give VIP a try.

How Does it Work?

Kobo Super Points has two reward programs: Regular & VIP.

Regular (Free):

kobosuperreg

So roughly, you get 10 points for every $1 you spend. And then, once you collect enough points, you can redeem them for a book from a set list of titles.

VIP ($10/year or 4000 points):

kobosupervip

As a VIP, you get roughly 20 points for every $1 you spend. The 10% works on most indie reads but not so much on bestsellers/mainstream titles (though they seem to update the applicable titles throughout the year). The book choices for the Free Book are pretty decent as well (I got Amber Smoke by Kristin Cast). And, of course, you can use your points to redeem for other (applicable) books throughout the year.

My Experience:

–Signing-Up–

Anyone with a Kobo account automatically collects Super Points for their purchases. They have the regular/basic (free) point system.

If you are interested in the VIP program, it’s super easy to switch over to. You just visit the Super Point homepage and opted in. You can have the renewal as an auto-subscribe so that when your 12 months of VIP privileges are done, they just keep continuing without interruption.

–How do you Collect Points?–

Literally every book you purchase on Kobo automatically gets you points. So you don’t have to even think about it!

They do have weekend promotions where you get double/triple the points as well and they do a good job of advertising that both on their site and if you are on their email list.

kobosuperbuy–Qualifying Titles for Point Redemption–

I really liked that Kobo lets you browse what titles you can redeem at any time. And if a title you are looking at purchasing qualifies, you can see if they get the VIP 10% discount (if applicable) and how many points it would take to redeem to get it on the main page for the title.

Now, what titles are these exactly? I find most of them are your reads from the smaller publishers or self-publishers. I classify them as Indie reads; you aren’t likely to find your big-name publishers’ works here. But, some of your favourite authors likely have titles with these smaller publishing companies so give it a search! You might be surprised.

I personally don’t mind the collection of titles. These are the books I would be buying from Kobo anyways because I can’t find them anywhere else (the big name titles my library has). So it works in my favour and it’s why I upgraded to VIP.

–Titles Qualifying for 10% VIP Discount–

The titles that qualify for this tend to be the same as the ones that you can use points for.

I think it’s important to note that the 10% doesn’t work on all titles on the site. You get points for any book you purchase (regardless of regular or VIP status; and regardless of its publisher) but the 10% is only for select titles. These select titles are clearly marked on their site (a red VIP circle is beside the price–see above) while browsing and on the title’s description page.

And one additional bonus of the VIP 10% is that on some weekend promotions, where select titles are (ex.) 30% off, you can combine the sale % off and your VIP 10% off! (ex. instead of 30% you get 40% off).

–Is the VIP Program Really Worth the $10 a Year?–

Because most of the books I buy qualify for the VIP discount, I decided that $10 for a year would probably pay itself back. Getting a free book was a nice bonus and because I really only buy books under $5, the double points aspect was nice. More bang for my buck if you will.

But I really wasn’t sure if I did get my money’s worth this past year because I have curbed my book buying habits and bought fewer books than I expected. So, I decided to crunch the numbers!

Points Earned as VIP (February 16 – January 17, 2017) — 2328

Amount Saved via VIP Discount (Feb 16 – January 17, 2017) — $11.21

A month before my VIP membership was about to expire, Kobo sent me a reminder email and actually told me how much I saved. My breakdown:

Free Book Redemption: $6

VIP 10% Savings so far: $15

Total Savings: $21

Now, I know that there is a discrepancy between my calculated discount savings and theirs but I’m actually more inclined to believe their number. My number is really my best guesstimate on how much I’ve saved by browsing my purchasing history and seeing what titles would have qualified. I have no doubt that I missed a few of the titles that are no longer available (and it doesn’t show on the receipt) or I miscalculated how much I saved (it could have been a 30% off weekend for example and not just a 10% off).

So basically: I made back my $10 for the membership in savings; got a “free” book; and got enough points to get a $2 book.

Do I recommend VIP?

If you are a frequent eBook purchaser, it is a great way to get some of your money back. Just make sure the books you see listed as applicable are actually books you want to read. It wouldn’t be worth it if the books don’t appeal to you.

So, Am I Keeping It?

Back in December, I turned off the auto-renewal on my Kobo VIP Membership. I did this because I made a resolution to myself that I was only going to buy books if they were under $2 in 2017.  I have so many great books waiting on my Kobo to be read and I can never seem to get to them! My hope is that I can read more books than I buy this year. It just didn’t seem like it would be worth the $10 this time around when I could use that $10 to buy ~10 books. I’m going to accumulate as many points as I can so I can use them on a book I wouldn’t normally by for myself (read >$5 in price).

But it is definitely something I will look into again in the future when my Kobo library is smaller in number 😉

Do you use Kobo Super Points? Any tips or feedback on the service?

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