Review: Off the Ice (Juniper Fall, #1)

Off the Ice was my first read of 2023, an it was cute, wintry way to start the new year. I always love a sports romance, and hockey is one of my go to favorites. Oh, and set in Minnesota in the winter, I was sold!

I did not expect this to be set in high school, but that said, it is definitely not YA. There is some sex on the page and references to sex off the page as well. I will say, I was upset that the author didn’t give Claire a chance to finish (if you know what I mean), romances like this should seriously be about women’s empowerment in the bedroom!

However, by the end of the book, I realized while this is in both Claire and Tate’s POV, it is really Tate’s story. There was honest discussion about dealing with tough families and familial issues, which I appreciated.

Off the Ice was a cute read, and set over Christmas and New Year’s, which was the perfect way to start my 2023.

Thank you to Entangled Publishing, LLC and NetGalley for the review copy.

Heartstopper Vol. 4

I tried to read this slowly and savor every minute of Heartstopper Volume 4. However, I read this so fast because I absolutely love Nick and Charlie and their story.

I loved the way mental health was openly and honestly discussed in this book. Not just as representation in one character, but something the characters struggle through together, and something that is acknowledged as a part of the character that will continue to need to be worked on.

Nick and Charlie have become my favorite fictional couple – they’re super cute and honestly awkward together. Which is so refreshing to see, because, what relationship is perfect?

I was delighted to see there will be a volume 5 – I was so worried that this was the end of the series.

Review: Fangirl

Fangirl has been on my to be read list for a very long time. I happen to have a signed copy of Carry On by Rainbow Rowell on my shelves, but wanted to read Fangirl first, because I knew they were related.

I really liked Cath and appreciated her awkwardness as she navigated through striking out on her own at college and finds herself. I absolutely related to her struggles and thoughts…and did I mention her awkwardness.

I do feel like some parts were a little long winded, but I still absolutely enjoyed every minute of this. I frequently had to tear myself away to do adult things.

I also really enjoyed the fan fiction in between chapters from Cath’s “Carry On, Simon,” and I’m even more excited to read Rowell’s Carry On because of it.

Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses

Okay. I did it. I read A Court of Thorns and Roses.

I had heard this series was incredible steamy, especially for YA, so I went into this book expecting some smut. However, the worst of the steam was trembling thighs and deep kisses. There is one fade to black scene towards the end. However, that said, I cannot speak for the rest of the series.

I did enjoy this story, and found it difficult to put down. I really appreciated the world building, even if sometimes it moved a little slow.

After reading about 300 pages, the action of the story picks up – I had no idea how the author was going to wrap up the action she had just begun in 100 pages. I had expected for the book to end on a cliffhanger, especially knowing there are more books in the series. (And I am not much of a series reader.)

I’m super happy that this book wrapped up in nice bow with a happy ending and no cliffhanger.

Review: Prom Theory

I was so honored to meet author Ann LaBar and have her sign a copy of her debut novel, Prom Theory. I bumped this book up on my TBR list to read it during prom season – while I was seeing friends post pictures of their children in their prom dresses and suits.

While friends to lovers isn’t my favorite trope in romance, the miscommunication (or in this case the lack of communication) trope never works for me.

That said, I did enjoy reading this book. The friendships felt honest, and I would have loved to be part of this friend group.

Iris is determined to scientifically prove that attraction is a chemical reaction. She sets her target on the most popular, and newly-single, boy in school.

I did really like the the NVLD representation in this book – and that the author took the time to give more information about NVLD in the back of the book.

Book Review: Check Please Vol. 1: #Hockey

I might have picked up volume one of Check Please soley on the fact that the MC bakes. And baking is my stress reliever. But I did not expect a) so many pies! b) so much hockey and C) to enjoy it so much.

Each chapter is a Vlog of Eric Bittle’s time at Samwell University as part of the Men’s Hockey team. The side characters are fantastic and Bitty is such a lovable character that I absolutely just devoured this graphic novel!

And the ending?! Okay, no spoilers. But holy freaking moly. Just. Swoon.

Believe me, I’m definitely picking up volume two. And in the mood to bake a pie or three.

Review: Go the Distance

Go the Distance was my first Disney Twisted Tale. I picked this one up based on the title alone – especially since this was the book I was planning on reading while at Walt Disney World for the RunDisney Springtime Surprise weekend!

Hercules is one of those Disney movies that I have watched so many times that I know many of the lines by heart and can sing all the songs. And Megara has always been one of my favorite Disney characters – she’s smart and sassy.

In this “Twisted Tale” Meg has to prove her worth to become a Greek god and is sent on a quest from Hera to prove her worth.

This was such a fun read. It took me a while to get into the author’s writing style, but I did wind up enjoying this a lot. One the story really got gong, a little less than half way into the book, is when the quest really gets going.

I’m definitely looking forward to reading more Twisted Tales after reading Go the Distance!

Review: All the Right Reasons

I’ve recently found that I haven’t enjoyed YA romance as much as I used to. However, All the Right Reasons was definitely an exception to this – as the romance for the main character was definitely secondary to the rest of the story.

When Cara and her mom are cast for a dating reality show, they go into the show knowing there’s a payout on the other end. What they don’t expect is producers meddling in budding relationships.

I really enjoyed reading this book – although a lot of the conflicts could easily have been solved with a little communication. The budding relationship between Cara and Connor was super sweet and honest, and seeing how Cara’s mom, Julia, was considering her potential suitors.

I did really like the ending. Although I did kind of guess the surprise twist, I still swooned and couldn’t read it fast enough.