Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Home Run Fiancé by Marika Ray


It’s all home runs and after parties until your sports agent-slash-best friend tells you to get a new image STAT or you won’t get that trade you desperately need in order to be there for your family. So what’s a guy to do except hire a fake girlfriend and go on pretend dates and then ask her to marry him in front of millions of fans?

In hindsight, I shouldn’t have hired my agent’s little sister.

And I definitely shouldn’t have kissed her, or taken her to meet my family, or envisioned an actual life with her.

Three strikes I’m out. Now she wants nothing to do with me and there’s nothing fake about how I feel.

I’m in love with my best friend’s sister.

My Review: 5 Stars!

So... you know when I said I was boycotting certain tropes? Well, I lied. How about we pretend that I said I was going to avoid certain authors who write said tropes? Does that sound as good to you as it does me? Yes? Sweet! It's settled! Haha.

I'm not lying when I say... I absolutely LOVED this book! I had the hardest time putting it down and I already want to read it again. It was THAT good! 

You guys... I literally found myself laughing out loud and reading with one of those goofy perma grins on my face all while the butterflies in my stomach were going crazy. Why, you ask? Rhys and Jake. 

*dreamy sigh*

Y'all these two. I just can't even begin to tell you about them. The moment these two meet, sparks start flying! And they kept flying until the very end. Both Rhys and Jake are passionate, strong characters. They know what they want and they refuse to give up until they get it. With Rhys's sass and Jake's suave ways, neither one of them stood a chance. I loved every minute of it. Hehe.

I am really loving this series! It's a lot of fun and giving me that much needed break from reality amidst all this craziness. There's nothing better than curling up in my big, comfy chair and diving into a great book. I'm looking forward to reading Charlotte's story. She's been a bit of a mystery and I can't wait to discover her secrets. 

I am so glad that I found Ms. Ray! I've been in a bit of a rut lately and only reading books that I've already reviewed. But from the moment I picked up Lines We Cross, that rut seems to have disappeared. Gotta love when that happens! 

Now let us take a moment to admire these two. I'm loving them. What do you think?

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

The Widower's Girlfriend by Marika Ray


Sometimes you have to fake it till you make it, in life and in matters of the heart.


I practically have Widower stamped on my forehead as a speaker traveling the world talking about my experience losing my wife to cancer as newlyweds. Which has always suited me just fine. Until a woman all wrong for me jumpstarts my heart with her comical bad luck at the airport. If I help her out, even for just this weekend, will I also have to throw away my lucrative career as the permanently grieving husband?


This final yearly trip with my old friends from high school has gone from bad to worse with a broken suitcase handle and my clothes strewn all over the baggage belt. Tall, dark, and handsome has witnessed all my humiliation with that condescending smirk, yet somehow I crave more time with this total stranger. When he offers to get my so-called friends off my back, who am I to say no?

But somehow between fake kisses and real conversation, the lines blur on what’s pretend and what’s true love. But what happens in Colorado, has to stay in Colorado. Doesn’t it?

My Review: 4.5 Stars

I know... I know. I can see and hear your confusion right now. "Wait... isn't this a trope that KJ is boycotting?! Did she really read a 'fake relationship' book willingly?!" And the answer is yes... yes I did. Why? Because just reading the synopsis had me feeling like there was more depth to this book than the other books I've tried in this trope. I was about 41% into the book when I realized that maybe it's not the trope per se, maybe it was the writing style of the authors who had written said books that I had the issue with. And with that... I continued reading. 

Jemma really does not want to go on the yearly trip with her "friends". Over the last few years they've only gotten worse and seem to go out of their way to treat her horribly. But she's determined to make this the last year of seeing them. 

Walker has been going through the motions ever since his wife died 8 years ago. But meeting Jemma woke something up inside of him. He no longer wanted to live his life alone. He wanted to experience everything that life had to offer but didn't want to do a disservice to his fans.

Both he and Jemma were shocked with his idea of him being her boyfriend just to get her friends off her back, but decided, what could it hurt? It's only for the weekend. But somewhere along the line, fake and reality started to blur and they're left with a tough decision. Do they walk away when all is said and done? Or do they see where their relationship could go?

I adored the meet-cute between Walker and Jemma. I couldn't help but giggle a little but then think... poor Jemma! I knew from the beginning that this story was going to be a fun one. Jemma and Walker were just what the other needed. Watching their relationship grow and seeing the sacrifices that they were willing to make for the other, had my heart smiling. They both wanted what was best for each other, even if that meant letting the other go.

I have to say, I'm looking forward to reading the other books in this series. If they're anything like this one, I know I'll love them!

As for my casting... *dreamy sigh* What do you think?

Monday, April 27, 2020

Lines We Cross by Marika Ray


Small towns were made for second chances--even if it’s your best friend’s sister.

Skylar Rae

I’m getting by just fine on my own when the boy who stole my heart and ran away twelve years ago shows up in town again. He’s a big shot baseball player now, needing my help to rehab his knee. If he’d just lay off the flirting and the dimples he throws with each grin, I might be able to do my job. Good thing I’m not dumb enough to fall for him a second time.


I promised my best friend I would never make a move on his little sister. I kept that promise—if you don’t count that one kiss senior year—but now that we’re adults and I’m moving back home, all bets are off. Skylar Rae isn’t the same person I knew twelve years ago and neither am I. It’ll take a lot more healing than I expected to see if she and I can cross that line again.

My Review: 5 Stars

Wow! Where do I even begin with my review?! Let's start of with... 

*dreamy sigh* 

From the moment I picked up this book I knew I was going to love it. There's just something about small town, second chance romance that draws me in. Add in a strong, independent heroine and mischievous, easy going hero and you have this girl hooked. I had the hardest time putting this book down.

I absolutely adored Skylar Rae and Max! They were such great characters and perfect for each other. I think one of the things I loved the most is how real they were. They were flawed and had past/present issues that they needed to overcome both as individuals as well as a couple. Watching their relationship develop, watching them heal and seeing their fears melt away was beautiful. 

One of my favorite things about reading is going on that emotional roller coaster with the characters. For me, feeling all the feels makes for a perfect read. I love the emotion and depth of this book. It dealt with some tough topics but, in my opinion, it was beautifully written.

I don't feel like I'm doing this book justice with my review. I'm having a hard time putting all my thoughts and feelings into words. What it boils down to is this... I loved this book! I wanted to devour it because I just had to know how everything worked out, but then I wanted to savor every minute I had with Skylar Rae and Max. It was just SO good! I highly recommend it to readers who love small town, second chance romance.  

Lines We Cross is a great start to what I'm sure is going to be an amazing series! I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the Nickle Bay Brothers books. 

I love finding new to me authors. This is the first book I have ever read by Ms. Ray and I can already tell you it won't be my last! I'm looking forward to reading her other sweet romance books. I have a feeling she's going to quickly become one of my autobuy authors. 

And of course we can't forget my casting. This one was definitely fun. What do you think?