Blurb: Museum curator Summer Hawthorne considered the exquisite ice-blue ceramic bowl given to her by her beloved Japanese nanny a treasure of sentimental value — until somebody tried to kill her for it.
The priceless relic is about to ignite a global power struggle that must be stopped at all costs. It’s a desperate situation, and international operative Takashi O’Brien has received his directive: everybody is expendable. Especially the woman who is getting dangerously under his skin as the lethal game crosses the Pacific to the remote and beautiful mountains of Japan, where the truth is deadly.
Length: 445 pages
Series: Ice #3
Genre: Romance. M/F Romance.
Read As: Paperback.
Why is it a favourite?
Back in the long long ago, a two level book store opened near where I live. This store (for a few years at least) was a game changer for me. I had a small source of income and unrepentantly spent too much of it here.
One section of this store that opened up a new world of accessible books for me was the romance section. I will admit I didn’t like being seen in this section or spending too much time in here but still it had WAY more romance books than my library 😍
From Descartes to designer babies, The Philosophy Gym poses questions about some of history’s most important philosophical issues, ranging in difficulty from pretty easy to very challenging. He brings new perspectives to age-old conundrums while also tackling modern-day dilemmas — some for the first time. Begin your warm up by contemplating whether a pickled sheep can truly be considered art, or dive right in and tackle the existence of God. In this radically new way of looking at philosophy, Stephen Law illustrates the problem with a story, then lets the argument battle it out in clear, easily digestible and intelligent prose. This perfect little mental health club is sure to give each reader’s mind a great workout.
On my very first trip out of Australia, I encountered this book in an airport bookstore. I remember reading the blurb and being hooked. I unfortunately did not purchase this book but was so very lucky that my local library had a copy of another of Law’s books, The Philosophy Files. Years later, armed with my own credit card, The Philosophy Gym was one of the first books I bought.
While I had always been somewhat questioning in what I was told, The Philosophy Files and Gym opened my mind to a lot of established philosophical concepts and theorises. My mind was opened with the possibilities and unanswerable questions of the universe – and because of this book I quickly devoured so many more books about Philosophy.
Blurb: In this quick and easy guide to queer and trans identities, cartoonists Mady G and JR Zuckerberg guide you through the basics of the LGBT+ world! Covering essential topics like sexuality, gender identity, coming out, and navigating relationships, this guide explains the spectrum of human experience through informative comics, interviews, worksheets, and imaginative examples. A great starting point for anyone curious about queer and trans life, and helpful for those already on their own journeys!
Release Date: 23rd April, 2019.
Length: 96 pages.
Genre: QUILTBAG. Educational.
Read as an: eBook.
My Thoughts: A Quick and Easy Guide to Queer and Trans Identities is a great introduction for people wanting to know more about gender, orientation, and self expression. The book provides definitions of words, histories, and encourages people to treat others with respect.
Blurb: Nothing interferes with Shane Hollander’s game—definitely not the sexy rival he loves to hate.
Pro hockey star Shane Hollander isn’t just crazy talented, he’s got a spotless reputation. Hockey is his life. Now that he’s captain of the Montreal Voyageurs, he won’t let anything jeopardise that, especially the sexy Russian whose hard body keeps him awake at night.
Boston Bears captain Ilya Rozanov is everything Shane’s not. The self-proclaimed king of the ice, he’s as cocky as he is talented. No one can beat him—except Shane. They’ve made a career on their legendary rivalry, but when the skates come off, the heat between them is undeniable. When Ilya realises he wants more than a few secret hookups, he knows he must walk away. The risk is too great.
As their attraction intensifies, they struggle to keep their relationship out of the public eye. If the truth comes out, it could ruin them both. But when their need for each other rivals their ambition on the ice, secrecy is no longer an option…
One-click with confidence. This title is part of the Carina Press Romance Promise: all the romance you’re looking for with an HEA/HFN. It’s a promise!
Release Date: 25th March, 2019.
Length: 310 pages.
Series: Game Changers #2.
Genre: M/M Romance. QUILTBAG. Sports.
Read as: eBook.
My Thoughts:Heated Rivalry is a book that takes place over the course of many years. While technically a sequel to the first Game Changers book (of the same name) Heated Rivalry takes place before and after the events of the first book.
Blurb: New York Admirals captain Scott Hunter takes his pregame rituals very seriously. In this case, it’s not just a lucky smoothie he’s craving—it’s the man who made it.
Pro hockey star Scott Hunter knows a good thing when he sees it. So, when a smoothie made by juice bar barista Kip Grady precedes Scott breaking his on-ice slump, he’s desperate to recreate the magic…and to get to know the sexy, funny guy behind the counter.
Kip knew there was more to Scott’s frequent visits than blended fruit, but he never let himself imagine being invited back to Scott’s penthouse. Or kissed with reckless abandon, never mind touched everywhere all at once. When it happens it’s red-hot, incredible and frequent, but also only on Scott’s terms and always behind his closed apartment doors.
Scott needs Kip in his life, but with playoff season approaching, the spotlight on him is suddenly brighter than ever. He can’t afford to do anything that might derail his career…like introducing the world to his boyfriend. Kip is ready to go all-in with Scott—but how much longer will he have to remain a secret?
Length: 334 Pages.
Series: Game Changers #1
Genre: M/M Romance. QUILTBAG. Sports
Read as an: eBook
My Thoughts: I’m not going to say I read Game Changers for the cover but I definitely read the blurb because of that cover. Once I started Game Changers, the story and characters of this book were so engaging that I finished the book in a day.
The blurb does hint at some angst, especially in regards to Scott being in the closet but I found that this wasn’t the case. The book is not just about Scott and Kip getting together but about the pair as they come to accept things about themselves and their relationship.
George and Harold have created the greatest superhero in the history of their elementary school–and now they’re going to bring him to life! Meet Captain Underpants! His true identity is so secret, even HE doesn’t know who he is!
Acclaimed author and Caldecott Honor illustrator Dav Pilkey provides young readers with the adventure of a lifetime in this outrageously funny, action-packed, easy-to-read chapter book. With hilarious pictures on every page, THE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN UNDERPANTS is great for both beginning and chapter-book readers. And like Dav’s other best-selling books of humor, it is sure to provide even the most reluctant readers with hours of fun.
I know I’ve talked a lot of Captain Underpants game recently but I have just fallen back in love with this series. I read these as a child and was inspired by the fun and cartoon style of the book. I won’t say it inspired a life long love of reading (because it was already there) but I will say it made reading so much fun!
Blurb: Make the daunting task of managing your personal finances approachable with Common Cents!
Money makes the world go ‘round, but it doesn’t have to make your head spin! This budgeting workbook is packed with easy-to-use worksheets, money-saving tips, advice from financial experts, and prompts to help you set (and achieve) realistic financial goals. Customisable monthly budgets let you record and manage your expenses by category, as well as see the big-picture impact of day-to-day decisions. But setting up a good budget isn’t just about tracking daily spending; it’s about long-term financial health—so Common Cents will also help you start saving, building up an emergency fund, paying off your debts, and learning how to invest in your future.
This financial workbook includes:
• Non-boring breakdowns of financial basics
• Budgeting, purchase-planning, and goal-setting worksheets
• Step-by-step guides to getting out of debt and building your savings
• Tips that will help keep you right on track
Common Cents is designed to help organise your financial life—you’ll learn how to make money work for you.
Release Date: 1st January, 2019.
Length: 188 pages.
Series: The Totally Approachable, Not-Scary Guides.
Genre: Self Help. Personal Finance. Non-fiction.
Read as an: eBook.
My Thoughts: Common Cents is a brilliantly simple budget book aimed towards the young adult and ‘new’ adult market. What separates Common Cents from other personal finance and budgeting books is the language and forgiving nature of the content. As someone who has read widely within the personal finance genre, Common Cents is a welcome breath of fresh air.
Blurb: Gender is at the forefront of our cultural landscape today. From pronouns to politics to pop culture, people are finally finding a new freedom in the fluidity of identity. Now more than ever, it’s important to understand, embrace, and intelligently discuss the many sides of gender.
She/He/They/Me is a unique and engagingly creative take on an increasingly complex concept. A nontraditional, nonlinear structure allows readers to choose their own path, from a patriarchal culture to a scenario where sex doesn’t even exist, and beyond.
This method of individual exploration will help readers gain the understanding and confidence they need to engage in meaningful conversations about gender.
Release Date: 5th, March, 2019.
Length: 320 pages.
Genre: Non-Fiction. QUILTBAG.
Read as: eBook.
My Thoughts: Think of She/He/They/Me as a ‘Choose Your Own Gender Adventure’ book. You start the book off making decisions about your sex, gender, identity, and where you are within human history – from here you explore the world around you and what your life would be like with these factors.
Blurb:It’s typical of video game programmer Josiah Simmons to be the last one on the plane on the way to the biggest meeting of his career. Though he’s (mostly) coping with his ADHD, he can’t handle another distraction. But he also can’t ignore his rugged seatmate—especially once he learns the military man’s a fan of his game.
Ryan Orson refuses to let his severe injuries pause his career as a navy SEAL. He’s got hours of grueling physical therapy ahead of him, and no time for anything that might get in the way of his return to active duty. But that doesn’t mean he’s above a little first-class flirtation with geeky-cute Josiah.
When a delay strands the pair in St. Louis, they agree to share a hotel room and a night of gaming. Neither expects their new connection to move to the next level in the light of day. Opposites may attract, but is this game over before it’s even begun?
Length: 245 pages.
Series: #gaymers #3
Genre: QUILTBAG. M/M Romance.
Read as an: eBook.
My Thoughts: Reeeally loved this couple. I loved the dynamic between them and how they both viewed the relationship – it added an emotional depth to the pair. The unstable ground between them mixed with their easy compatibility was so great. Especially when you combined this with the emotional journeys the characters were on, Josiah and his leadership issues and Ryan with his rehabilitation.
I knew while I was reading this that it was not only amazing but that it was one of my favourites for the year ❤
Smut Level: Lots of off-screen action and relationship development but I enjoyed this aspect of the novel. The sexy scenes were great and really emotionally charged.
I loved seeing the emotional development of Ryan throughout these scenes as he learned that he can still be the same sexual being he was previous to his accident.
Blurb: Roomies with benefits and the potential for so much more in Marriage Lessons by Katie Ruggle, writing as Katie Allen
Falling for your boss—no matter how fast he makes your pulse race—is such a cliché. But it’s one Annabelle Shay can’t seem to avoid. Gallery owner Louis Dumont is stupid hot. Plus, he’s sweet, sensitive and a brilliant artist. But he’s also oblivious. Which is good because Annabelle loves her job too much to risk it.
Louis hasn’t been with a woman since he was wounded in Afghanistan, remaining guarded about his body and his heart. But Annabelle is different. She keeps him grounded. Which is why protecting her—first pretending to be her husband to ward off unwanted attention, then inviting her to move in after her landlord kicks her out—feels so natural, even if it invites rampant temptation.
Try as Annabelle might, there are some desires you simply can’t shake. Louis repeatedly joke-asking her to marry him isn’t helping, especially when their unbearable attraction upgrades them to roomies with benefits. But Louis is still keeping pieces of his past to himself, leaving Annabelle to wonder if he’ll ever truly be vulnerable with her—or if she stands to lose everything.
Length: 221 pages.
Series: Off Guard #3.
Genre: Romance. Erotica.
Read as an: eBook.
My Thoughts: Marriage Lessons is a quick and enjoyable read. I started this book in the afternoon and had demolished it by the evening. The two main characters, Annabelle and Louis are charismatic, lovable, and fun to read together. Featuring the characters both met and mentioned from Baking Lessons, the book follows the story of Annabelle Shay as she settles into her new job with renowned artist Louis Dumont.