Book Reviews, New Adult, Year of Reviews - 2022

Review – The Kiss List by Maya Hughes

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The Kiss List; St. Francis U #2
(A standalone within a series)

Publication Date: March 3, 2022

Genre/Tropes: New Adult/Fake Relationship/Enemies-to-Lovers Romance

Author: Maya Hughes

Review Rating: 5 Gold Stars


Enemies to Friends to Lovers. The perfect trifecta.

To sum up the juicy details and make you dive right in: we have a school/love competition to win with a fake relationship to kick it off. Plus these two aren’t just faking it, they loathe one another with a passion of a thousand suns. This is the kind of yummy-hand over the popcorn while pulling up a front row seat for all the steamy-steam kind of book.

Cole and Kennedy have tons of friction. It rolled off them whenever they were around one another where you could basically get out the marshmallows and roast them in the the fire that was burning so hot in their vicinity.

What began as complete animosity was a lot of misunderstanding. These two truly did begin with a ton of attraction and a night that went horribly wrong, but that is just a small part of their story.

There is a puppy love game on campus that has a huge prize for the winners, but said winners need to actually be a couple. That is a huge feat for both Cole and Kennedy in general. Neither are known for dating or being in a relationship especially to each other. To win it all will basically take a miracle, or at the very least big acting skills. They are both uber competitive and neither of them wants to lose, but as the competition goes on, they may actually lose more than just the competition. With their hearts on the line, losing doesn’t begin to look too bad, until everything falls apart.

We enter again into the STFU world and while I adore these new characters, I still can’t get past the horrible coach. I was really hoping Maya would have lightened up on the storyline around him, but alas Mikelson is still there and still just as horrible.

The entire idea with the Kiss List is fresh and adorable; Cole and Kennedy are fun in their challenges with each other, but I would have loved to see what the other couples in the challenge were doing. Just a thought. While I loved the book, that would be my only complaint to this story, well aside from the coach, who seriously is just the absolute worst, non-redeemable person ever.

So far, I’m loving this new university series and I’m looking forward to more.


Cole and Kennedy’s story.
A Fulton U rivals enemies to lovers, fake relationship romance.
If I were on fire, she’d break out the marshmallows.

It’s not that we don’t like each other, more like hate with the fury of a thousand suns. But it wasn’t always that way.

I still remember how her lips tasted. How they felt pressed against mine. How I wanted more.

How I still crave her.

Our disastrous night together ended with her storming out, me wondering if I’d ever be able to show my face on campus again and us as bitter enemies.

When a campus competition is announced for the best couple, she’s the last person I thought I’d turn to for help. But the prize could change both our lives. An internship for her and a chance to finally connect with my father. It’s too hard to resist. Just like her heated glares and tempting curves.

To win, we’ve got to prove to everyone we’re a couple. Head over heels, can’t keep our hands off each other in love. Fake the hell out of it for our chance at glory.

Maybe we’re a little too good at selling it to the whole campus because the lines haven’t just been blurred, they’ve gone up in flames. Can I convince her I want us to be together for real and keep the prize? Or will I lose them both?

The Kiss List (Fulton U Rivals)

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Blog Tour - 2022, Contemporary Romance, Year of Releases - 2022, Year of Reviews - 2022

Blog Tour – Fall For Me by J.H. Croix

Release Date: February 22

A swoon-worthy firefighter romance from USA Today Bestselling Author J.H. Croix!
Problem: My ex is marrying my ex-bestie.
Plan A: Burn the church down?
Plan B: Fake marry my friend.
I haven’t seen Archer since fifth grade. When he shows up in our small hometown and offers to marry me, I don’t ask many questions. I get to salvage my shredded pride and do him a favor.
I only need one thing from him—sell the deal when my ex comes back to town to marry my ex-bestie. Now I’m fake-married to a totally hot guy who needs a wife for *reasons*.
I’m way too cynical to fall for anyone, but Archer’s hard to resist. He keeps telling me we’re just faking it, but trust me when I tell you, there are some things we are not faking.
This was never supposed to be real. Until he whispers, fall for me.
Archer & Phoebe’s story is perfect for readers who love: Marriage of convenience, friends to lovers, slow burn, broody secret billionaire, small town gossip, emotional romance with a dash of angst, plenty of steam and swoon, and a hero with a protective streak a mile wide.
Grab Your Copy Here: 
Meet J.H. Croix


USA Today Bestselling Author J. H. Croix lives in a small town in the historical farmlands of Maine with her husband and two spoiled dogs. 


Croix writes steamy contemporary romance with sassy women and rugged alpha men who aren’t afraid to show some emotion. Her love for quirky small-towns and the characters that inhabit them shines through in her writing. 


Take a walk on the wild side of romance with her bestselling novels!

Connect with J.H. Croix
Blog Tour - 2022, Contemporary Romance, Year of Releases - 2022, Year of Reviews - 2022

Blog Tour – Up In Smoke by Kate Meader

 Release Date: February 22

Lives are on the line at Engine 6 … and so are hearts.


Newly-minted firefighter Abby Sullivan is exactly where she wants to be: Chicago Fire Department’s Engine 6, the station where her mom blazed a trail as one of the first female firefighters in the city. The first to fall in the line of duty, too. All Abby wants is to succeed, but that’s a tough proposition when people only see a feel-good story, a token woman failing at a man’s job, or the princess in need of protection. And the man tasked with watching her six? 


Lieutenant Roman Rossi, the one person she can’t let close. 


Having the daughter of his boss and nemesis under his wing shouldn’t be a problem for Roman—he’s a professional and can treat her like any other firefighter rookie. Except she happens to be the gorgeous woman he once shared a slice of cherry pie with, followed by the hottest, sweetest, most pulse-pounding kiss of his life. He didn’t know her name but he had planned to find out.


Now Roman knows exactly who Abby is: a threat to his self-control more dangerous than a five-alarm blaze. Lust has no place in the firehouse, and a distraction like Abby with her electric blue eyes, waves of flame-red hair, and freckles Roman wants to map with his tongue, is one he can ill afford. 


Because one wrong move … and it could all go up in smoke.


Up in Smoke is the first in the brand new Hot in Chicago Rookies series about firefighters navigating the trials of new jobs and sizzling romances as they find their place in the world and the love of a lifetime.


Grab Your Copy Here:

Amazon | Apple | Kobo | Nook 

Read Kay’s Review: Up In Smoke

Meet Kate Meader 


Originally from Ireland, USA Today bestselling author Kate Meader cut her romance reader teeth on Maeve Binchy and Jilly Cooper novels, with some Harlequins thrown in for variety. Give her tales about brooding mill owners, oversexed equestrians, and men who can rock an apron, fire hose, or hockey stick, and she’s there. 

Now based in Chicago, she writes sexy contemporary romance with big-hearted guys and strong heroines – and heroes – who can match their men quip for quip.


Connect with Kate Meader 

Newsletter | Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Goodreads    BookBub | Reader Group | Amazon Author Page

2022 Excerpt/Teaser, Year of Releases - 2022

Excerpt Reveal – TWISTED GAMES by Elena Lawson




TWISTED GAMES (Boys of Briar Hall Book 3) by Elena Lawson

Release Date: March 25th

Genre/Tropes: Dark Gang Romance/Enemies to Lovers/Reverse Harem/Bloodthirsty Psychos/Badass FMC/Found Family


Add to Goodreads:



Preorder is AVAILABLE!

Amazon US:

Amazon Universal:



Start the series with #1, Crooked Crows:






“Tell me you want me,” he said, so close I could feel his breath fanning over my lips as he withdrew his thumb from my mouth, wetting my lips with it.

He moved fast, gripping the back of my neck to haul me closer, until I could feel the brush of his lips against mine when he spoke again. “Tell me.”

“I want you,” I muttered breathily, my panties already soaked, thighs squeezing at the hot ache between them.

“Good girl.”

A ripple of unexpected gratification raced through me, making me shiver.

His lips pressed to mine, hot and full as they pried mine apart to allow his tongue entry. My back slammed against the padded wall, wrists pinned high to either side of my head. I moaned into his mouth as he pressed against me, letting me feel the hard length of him nudging my belly.

I struggled against his hold, needing to be closer. Needing to take off the layers of clothing separating us, but he held me there, hands tightening around my wrists.

“Now, Sparrow,” he chastised. “Did I tell you you could move?”






Favors and debts. Blood and sacrifice. The good and the bad. I can’t have some and not the rest.

I can’t have it all.

This place and these men have seeped into me, and not even my blades can cut them out. But Rook, Corvus, and Grey aren’t the only ones keeping me up at night.

There’s Diesel St. Crow, an imminent gang war, and an anonymous shadow from my past. Each one clinging to my bones as irrevocably as my own shadow. Any of them could be the end of me unless I do something about it.

It’s time for me to show them I’m not a toy to be played with. I’m not just Ava Jade Mason anymore. I am Sparrow. I am Ghost. I am motherf*cking AJ. I am the queen they’ve all been waiting for.

And what do queens do?

It’s time for some new rules in Thorn Valley, and I’m going to be the one making them.

Twisted Games is book three in the Boys of Briar Hall series and should be read after Wicked Trials. It’s a reverse harem romance, meaning the main character will have more than one love interest and she will not have to choose between them.

Warning: This series contains foul language, graphic depictions of gang violence, references to past trauma, and jealous/possessive themes. Please read responsibly.



About the Author:

Elena writes stories full of feisty heroines and unforgettable heroes. She may also have a small thing for bad boys and often gravitates towards the darker things in life. When she comes out of her writing cave, she can be found obsessively rearranging her bookshelves, drinking an unreasonable amount of wine, or cooking overly fancy meals for her family and friends.



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