Book Reviews

Book Review: 8 Weeks (Time for Love #1) by Bethany Lopez

The opening chapter of this book sucked me in immediately. After a night of heavy drinking, Cal wakes up to find himself naked and in the company of an unfamiliar woman who is also naked. The woman makes her exit almost as soon as Cal realizes she’s there, and he is left wracking his brain, trying to figure out how the hell he let such a “thing” happen. Whether Cal (who has been married to his high school sweetheart Shelly for six years) actually had sex with this mystery woman is unclear at this point, so I was itching to learn all of the details surrounding his infidelity. I was also curious to see how Shelly would react.

I have to be honest, I was not satisfied when Shelly simply stormed off without asking Cal any questions. I certainly would have had questions, as would most women I know. Then to make matters worse, he doesn’t even go after her right away!? It drove me nuts, but not so much that I didn’t want to keep reading.

I loved Cal. (Yeah, I know, he cheated. But I still couldn’t help but have a soft spot for him.) He’s kind, caring, romantic and an all-around good guy. While this made me root for him, it also kept me wondering how a guy like him could have cheated on his wife. (This was bothersome to me throughout the story.) As for Shelly, I just couldn’t relate to the way she hastily decided she wanted a divorce. Who would just walk away after six years of marriage without analyzing the situation? She also does other things, while Cal is trying win her back, that just irritated me and made me feel for the guy even more. So why the 3 1/2 star rating? Because Lopez does a good job of developing these characters and keeping their thoughts and actions consistent. Even though I didn’t agree with the way Shelly handled the situation, I began to understand her.

My favorite thing about this book was the supporting characters. Each of Cal and Shelly’s friends reminded me of someone I know. The relationships between Cal and his friends (Scott and T. J.) and Shelly and her friends (Gaby and Sasha) were realistic, and the dialogue was quite funny at times. Oh, and the banter between T. J. and Sasha? Hilarious. I will be reading 21 Days (#2 in the series) to find out what happens with them.

If you enjoy romance novels laced with a few hot-n-heavy scenes and a bit of humor, then you should check out this book.

AMAZON

GOODREADS

Book Reviews

Book Review: Of Mice and Money by Winifred Morris

Of Mice and Money tells the story of Kiva, a woman in her late thirties who wants to make a clean break from her drug-smuggling husband. After a decade of putting up with his “scary business” and being told things on a “need-to-know” basis, she decides to give up a life of luxury for one that is simpler, quieter, and much safer—or so she thinks. When she finds a place that seems perfect for a fresh start, chaos (and humor) ensues as new and familiar faces begin showing up on her doorstep.

Much of the first half of the book, which was a tad slow but packed with the hilarious inner dialogue of Kiva, is spent setting up the plot and introducing key characters. However, if the author hadn’t done such a thorough job of introducing each character, I’m not sure the second half would have flowed as well as it does. As soon as Kiva’s hippie parents show up, the story really takes off. I finished the book in one sitting from that point on. There were no loose ends by the end, and I felt thoroughly satisfied with how everything shakes out.

I really enjoyed getting to know Kiva, who is funny and likeable despite the mistakes she has made in the past, especially in regards to her daughter. When Amy shows up after not seeing Kiva for four years, their rocky relationship adds a layer of drama that any mother or daughter can probably relate to.

This book sort of reminds me of the popular TV series Weeds. Despite the seriousness of some of the themes in the story (drug dealing, drug use, mother/daughter drama, deadbeat parenting), it is still humorous and quite entertaining. No, Kiva is not a drug dealer like Nancy Botwin in Weeds, but their personalities are quite similar. If you were a fan of Weeds, then this book is right up your alley.

Note: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

4 STARS

Amazon | Goodreads

Book Reviews

Book Review: There Are No Men by Carol Maloney Scott

Claire is a thirty-something divorcee who has ventured back into the dating world. Complications arise due to the fact that she is unable to have children, which she feels eliminates the prospect of finding love with a younger man or anyone who wants children. The first couple of dates she goes on are a result of online dating – these dates offer many laughs and end horribly! On top of meeting men via the Internet, Claire is encouraged by her friend/co-worker to attend Meetup events (which don’t pan out much better than the online dating). Throughout the story, she is torn about her feelings for a younger co-worker as well as a new (also younger) neighbor – both she finds attractive and both are interested in her.

The first half of the story is quite funny. I love Scott’s snappy humor. She also includes a lot great visual language. For example: “He looks like a cross between a little boy who is afraid of the headmistress at the orphanage and a puppy who wants a belly rub.”

A few funny quotes:

“Claire, you’re going out partying when Jesus was nailed to the cross?” – Claire’s mother on going out before Easter.

“Barbie actually looks like a hooker in her hot pink mini dress and stiletto glitter boots…” – Claire’s thoughts on a neighbor girl’s Fashionista Barbie

While I enjoyed all of the humor and getting to know Claire during the first half of the book (although she cries way too much), I felt like the story moved slowly at times. There were several occasions when I skimmed unnecessary details, such as the description of the furniture and bedding in her sister’s apartment and the fact that she picks up a glass of wine and slowly moves to the kitchen to sit down at a table. There was quite a lot of extraneous information like this in the first half. However, as soon as Nathan the “perfect” doctor (yikes!) showed up, I couldn’t stop reading because I really wanted to find out how things would pan out with him. He was so unlikeable that I loved reading about him. Claire blindly focused on his outward appearance while ignoring his MANY controlling and snobbish behaviors, which had me wanting to shake some sense into her. This kept me reading, as well–after all, she had to wise up sooner or later! The introduction of Nathan and Brandon’s character development made me really enjoy the second half.

AMAZON

GOODREADS