Mid-Year Freak Out Tag (2016 Edition)

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Hey guys! We’re halfway through the year, which means it’s time for the Mid-Year Freak Out Book Tag, and Deanna @A Novel Glimpse was awesome and tagged me to do it 😀 . Thank you Deanna!!!


BEST BOOK YOU’VE READ YET IN 2016

Without a doubt, my favorite book of this year so far was A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas. It was bonkers and amazing and I want and need more. I don’t know how Sarah J. Maas keeps doing it, but I love her books more and more.


BEST SEQUEL YOU’VE READ SO FAR IN 2016

So many!!! But I’ll settle with another of my favorites of this year, and that is Us (Him #2) by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy. This book stole my heart completely. I love Jamie and Wes and I miss my boys dearly.

   


NEW RELEASE YOU HAVEN’T READ YET BUT WANT TO

Looking around my room, I’ll say The Girl Who Fell by Shannon M. Parker, that has been sitting on my shelf since March totally untouched, and I really really want to read it.

*shame on me*


MOST ANTICIPATED RELEASE FOR THE SECOND HALF OF THE YEAR

Probably Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas. I love the Throne of Glass series, and I have high hopes for book 5, because I’m one of those loving the direction she’s been giving to the series. I’m curious to see if it will take the place of favorite read of the year away from ACOMAF


BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT

I had high hopes for South of Sunshine by Dana Elmendorf, because I’m a huge fan of LGBT contemporaries, and I was in the need to read more F/F romances. Unfortunately this book didn’t match my expectations, and didn’t deal with important issues like the way I thought it should


BIGGEST SURPRISE

One of my biggest surprises this year so far was Anything You Want by Geoff Herbach. This book blew me away, and I know a lot of people didn’t quite like it, but I thought it was an amazing book, and I would like to shove it in everyone’s face!


FAVORITE NEW AUTHORKelly Siskind CREDIT Eirik Dunlop

Can I name 2?! I need to say Elle Kennedy, who wrote my favorite two NA series (Off Campus and Him), because she’s amazing! And then Kelly Siskind, because each time I read one of her books, it makes me so so happy (and she’s also super nice).


NB_milesNEWEST FICTIONAL CRUSH

Confession time: I have a lot of new crushed this year, and I’ll chose this one because I really want to use a pic of the actor playing the role. So I’m going for Miles from Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover, because REASONS!

And that guy is hottie Nick Bateman, who’s set to play Miles in the Ugly Love movie!!! And that’s his cutie dog Joey 😀 .


NEWEST FAVORITE CHARACTER

Julian Blackthorn stole my heart in Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare. I love him! I love him so much that he might have stolen Jem’s place as my favorite shadowhunter (and book boyfriend). Julian is strong, loving, mysterious. He would do ANYTHING for the people he loves. There’s still so much more to know about him, and I can’t wait.


BOOK THAT MADE YOU CRY

Oh my god… I cried so much when I finished Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma. This book is so heartbreaking… so good, but so heartbreaking.

And I have no clue as to how I’m going to review it, because my heart is breaking just thinking about it.


BOOK THAT MADE YOU HAPPY

Smut by Karina Halle was a book that made me happy because it put a huge smile on my face. This book had an awesome plot, and awesome romance and it was funny as hell.

Also, so damn sexy!


FAVORITE BOOK TO FILM ADAPTATION

I don’t think I’ve seen adaptations this year, besides Captain America: Civil War, so I’m gonna say that one. I loved this movie, and it’s Marvel, which is always good on my book.

   


FAVORITE POST YOU HAVE DONE THIS YEAR

Are you kidding?! Do you know how much I posted this year already?! LOL. I really liked to do this TTT post though, about first kisses. Also, check how I was doing with my challenges 3 months ago here, but know that I’m way ahead now!


MOST BEAUTIFUL BOOK YOU’VE BOUGHT THIS YEAR

One of the most beautiful books I’ve got this year so far was Night Owls (or The Anatomical Shape of a Heartby Jenn Bennett .

I love this cover so much. I fell in love with it the minute I locked eyes with this book at Waterstones.


WHAT BOOKS DO YOU NEED TO READ BY THE END OF THE YEAR

There are 2 contemporaries that I’m dying to read, and they are Firsts by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn and Emmy & Oliver by Robin Benway. I’m thinking that maybe September will be their month (because August will be NA month).


I tag EVERYONE who wants to do this tag, because I need to know how you are all doing so far this reading year 🙂 .

May Book Haul

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Hey guys. Here we are, at the end of another month, and I’m bringing you another book haul. This month I didn’t haul as much books as last month, but it was still a pretty good one 🙂 .


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This month I bought The Rose and the Dagger and A Court of Mist and Fury. I still haven’t read any of them, but I will soon, and I just had to have them as soon as they were out. I’m a little sad about TRATD‘s colour, the blue on the paperback is not the best, but ACOMAF is gorgeous. I finally received my paperback signed copy of More Than Music by Elizabeth Briggs, which was sent to me by Elodie Nowodazkij after I won a giveaway she was hosting.

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Once again, most of these books I got at Kindle deals, for nothing!


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Don’t forget that my giveaway is still running until June 18th…

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Smut (Karina Halle)

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What happens when the kink between the pages leads to heat between the sheets? 

All Blake Crawford wants is to pass his creative writing course, get his university degree, and take over his dad’s ailing family business. What Amanda Newland wants is to graduate at the top of her class, as well as finally finish her novel and prove to her family that writing is a respectful career.

What Blake and Amanda don’t want is to be paired up with each other for their final project, but that’s exactly what they both get when they’re forced to collaborate on a writing piece. Since Amanda thinks Blake is a pushy asshole (with a panty-melting smirk and British accent) and Blake thinks Amanda has a stick up her ass (though it’s a brilliant ass), they fight tooth and nail until they discover they write well together. They also may find each other really attractive, but that’s neither here nor there. 

When their writing project turns out to be a success, the two of them decide to start up a secret partnership using a pen name, infiltrating the self-publishing market in the lucrative genre of erotica. Naturally, with so much heat and passion between the pages, it’s not long before their dirty words become a dirty reality. Sure, they still fight a lot, but at least there’s make-up sex now. 

But even as they start to fall hard for each other, will their burgeoning relationship survive if their scandalous secret is exposed? Or are happily-ever-afters just a work of fiction?


A little while ago I was part of the release blitz for this book, and I’ve been meaning to set my hands on it since then. Then I did! And GOD! This book was funny!

The book is told in dual POV, and both voices, Amanda and Blake’s, are super different and funny as hell. The author did an amazing job distinguishing the voices of the two main characters. Have I mention how funny this book is?!

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I really liked the characters. It was funny to see both Amanda and Blake grow, personally and professionally. They’re also both complex characters, with lot of baggage and layers… especially Blake.

I LOVED the romance, because it evolved slowly and even with the sex being a huge element of their relationship at some point, they had become friends by then and actually knew each other. They were also always themselves around one another, and that was fantastic, as well as the fact that they were so supportive of each other’s goals. Also, Amanda has my idea of romance down!

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The plot was so unique. It was hilarious to see them poke fun at all the tropes used in the erotic romances, and dissect what works and what doesn’t, and then see how it applies to some points of their own romance. So well done. Also, this book gave me such a better understanding for all the indie publishing process… 🙂 . Also, the nerdiness and popular references were beyond amazing!

Overall, this was a great NA romantic comedy, with a good story and great character development, and good dialog and amazing sex scenes. I want to read more of Karina Halle now :D.

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Release Day Blitz: SMUT by Karina Halle

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Smut AMAZON - CopyWhat happens when the kink between the pages leads to heat between the sheets? 

All Blake Crawford wants is to pass his creative writing course, get his university degree and take over his dad’s ailing family business. What Amanda Newland wants is to graduate at the top of her class, as well as finally finish her novel and prove to her family that writing is a respectful career. 

What Blake and Amanda don’t want is to be paired up with each other for their final project but that’s exactly what they both get when they’re forced to collaborate on a writing piece. Since Amanda thinks Blake is a pushy asshole (with a panty-melting smirk and British accent) and Blake thinks Amanda has a stick up her ass (though it’s brilliant ass), they fight tooth and nail until they discover they write well together. They also might find each other really attractive, but that’s neither here nor there. 

When their writing project turns out to be a success, the two of them decide to start up a secret partnership together using a pen name, infiltrating the self-publishing market in the lucrative genre of erotica. Naturally, with so much heat and passion between the pages, it’s not long before their dirty words become a dirty reality. Sure, they still fight a lot but at least there’s make-up sex now. 

But even as they start to fall hard for each other, will their burgeoning relationship survive if their scandalous secret is exposed or are happily-ever-afters just a work of fiction?

Amazon | iTunes | Nook | Kobo


Excerpt:

She holds my gaze for a moment and something passes over her. Regret, maybe. Then she nods. “Sit down. Let’s work.”

And so we do. And for the first time in a long time, it’s strained. I’m about to suggest maybe we need the Estonian vodka anyway when she lets out an exasperated sigh over something she’s reading.

It happens to be something I wrote.

“What?” I ask, wondering what I did wrong.

She gives me the the ‘are you kidding me?’look. “Okay, I was ignoring it earlier but I think you need to get a grip on some of this shit. This simply does not happen.”

“Explain, please.”

“I just think it’s unrealistic for there to be so much talking, let alone the fact that the first time they do it it’s in a public place.”

“Too much talking?”

“Yeah.” she scans over the document. “You know, give me your cock, oh you feel so good, harder, harder, you’re so big, fuck me harder big boy.”

“Have you even had good sex?” I ask incredulously.

She flinches. “Of course I have. And it’s none of your business.”

“We’re writing about sex. It’s completely my business. I’m not letting you interject your edits based on your personal experiences about sex because believe me, if the sex is good, you’re moaning my name.”

She raises her chin. “Maybe all those girls were faking it.”

Oh, brilliant.

“Excuse me?” I say, hands pressed against the table, nearly getting out of my chair. “You have no idea. I pride myself in giving a girl as many bloody orgasms as she can handle.”

“Bloody orgasms don’t sound like fun,” she jokes softly.

“They can be if you’re into knife play,” I tell her, even though that’s not exactly what I meant. Still, she scrunches up her nose. “Don’t knock it until you try it, but that’s neither here nor there. When you were with Alan, he must have made you come at least a few times.”

If he didn’t, I feel like finding the guy and showing him a thing or two for wasting four years of her life.

“Yeah,” she says flatly.

“And in the middle of that orgasm, didn’t you want to yell a few things?”

“Sometimes.”

“And why didn’t you?”

She looks at her nails as if they’re suddenly fascinating. “It didn’t seem right. It was…too intimate. I would have felt dumb. He didn’t like any of that stuff.”

The plot thickens. “Any of what stuff?”

“Sex that didn’t involve the missionary position or the bed.”

My mouth drops open. My brain and penis can’t compute this. “I feel so sorry for you.”

We must remedy this.

She glares at me. “It’s not like I didn’t want to do it. I did. And he did try it. Most of it. But it always went back to the same old.”

I knew it. She’s a nerd on the streets and a freak in the sheets.

“I don’t mean to brag,” I tell her in all seriousness. “But you do realize that I could give you an orgasm in thirty seconds.”

Her eyes widen. I can’t tell if she’s horrified or intrigued. “I don’t believe you and I don’t want you to try.”

She’s not getting it. I frown, trying to explain. “If you’re having good sex and it’s with someone you’re comfortable with, you won’t worry about holding back. You’ll cry out all the nonsense you want, you’ll make noises like a pig and scream like you’re on fire because you truly can’t have a good orgasm unless you’re letting go on all accounts.” I lean back in my chair and study her, running my fingers along my jaw. “I would venture that every time you came with your ex, you were only experiencing half of what you should have been. How is it with your vibrators?”

I expect her to tell me to fuck off, that I’m getting too personal but to my surprise she gives me a small smile. “It’s better. But I do have a roommate with exceptionally good hearing.” She clears her throat. “Anyway, so I guess I’m wrong. The heroine can make all the noise she wants.”

“And have first time sex in public.”

“I don’t know…”

“Believe me, when you finally get a chance to fuck, you don’t care where it is. That’s why I always have a condom in my pocket. And the more public the sex, the sneakier you have to be, the hotter it is.”

“But in the book you would never get caught.”

“You don’t always get caught in real life too.”

I can see she wants to ask me where I’ve done it but she loses her nerve. “Okay.” She looks back to the document. “I accept defeat.”

But I don’t want her to. I want to prove to her I’m right and not have her take my word.

Is there a non-creepy way to show her just how amazing good sex can feel? I’m thinking not.

Or…maybe there is.

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About Karina Halle:

Halle HeadshotKarina Halle is a former travel writer and music journalist and The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Bestselling author of The Pact, Racing the Sun, Sins & Needles and over 25 other wild and romantic reads. She lives on an island off the coast of British Columbia with her husband and her rescue pup, where she drinks a lot of wine, hikes a lot of trails and devours a lot of books.

Halle is represented by the Waxman Leavell Agency and is both self-published and published by Simon & Schuster and Hachette in North America and in the UK.

Hit her up on Instagram at @authorHalle, on Twitter at @MetalBlonde and on Facebook. You can also visit http://www.authorkarinahalle.com and sign up for the newsletter for news, excerpts, previews, private book signing sales and more.

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