September Reads (and yeah… how did this happen?)

This was a good reading month! I ended up reading 14 books and 9 novellas, and that’s mostly because I fell into a big trap…

Now, a few years ago, I remember a friend at work telling me about a great smut series to speed read through, and how addicting those books were. I took one look at the cover of the first one and said “yeah… no thank you”. Four years later, and it happened. After reading the ACOTAR series I needed some smut, something fast paced, romantic, with a lot of action. TikTok seemed to think so too, so I kept seeing videos with Ice Planet Barbarians by Ruby Dixon on it. The first book was available on Scribd, and yeah, 12 books later and 9 novellas and I CANNOT STOP!

I don’t understand what it is… are the books brilliant? Nope. Is the world building fantastic? Meh. Is the romance super good? Depends on the books, but in general, average. Does it have a trope I absolutely hate? Yes it does. Am I still consuming them like they’re Ferrero Rocher’s? YYYYYEEEEEESSSSS!

You can find the info on the series here. I will drop a few spoilers for the whole series and below just a very quick thoughts on the books.

As an overall, all the books have this in common: human girls land on an Ice Planet, the planet has one humanoid tribe, the Sa-Khui, full of males, and only 4 females, girls need to assimilate a parasite to be able to survive on the planet, and this parasite has the function of making them healthy, and species propagation. So the cootie decides who is mate with whom, and from that point on the goal is: have sex until there’s a baby. Yeah, so, I’m not crazy at all about the whole breeding trope. The Sa-Khui males, from the moment they resonate, have one purpose only: make their mates happy, and I think all of them say the following in their books: “I’m the luckiest of males” :D. There are also ridges, everywhere… and a spur, which you only learn what is for on book 11… The writing is a bit repetitive to be honest, but also, I didn’t even care.

Ice Planet Barbarians (IPB #1): Vektal and Georgie story and major worldbuilding. Everything happens TOO fast, but somehow, very satisfying. I wasn’t a huge fan of the whole sex thing even prior to them speaking the same language, but again, this book was SPICY! – 3.5 / 5 Stars

Ice Planet Honeymoon: Vektal and Georgie (IPB #1.5): Cute short story, heavy on the emotion and cementing the bond between the couple – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian Alien (IPB #2): Raahosh & Liz book. Probably my favourite girl in all the series. Liz is a badass, and Raahosh is just as great. These two had great banter, and while I don’t condone how it started, I really liked how the story progressed and the connection these 2 had. – 4.0 / 5 Stars

Ice Planet Honeymoon: Raahosh & Liz (IPB #2.5): Short and unnecessary. But again, great couple. Raahosh has issues 😀 – 3.5 / 5 Stars

Barbarian Lover (IPB #3): I really liked Aehako & Kira. Kira was a bit negative at times, but had plenty of reason. Aehako was super funny. I liked the free will (to a degree), and that this one had a bit more plot. – 4.0 / 5 Stars

Ice Planet Honeymoon: Aehako & Kira (IPB #3.5): Funny and sweet!!!! – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian Mine (IPB #4): Rukh & Harlow’s story. This one is completely different, but Rukh gave me some Raahosh vibes (rightly so). The fact that most of the book is away from everyone else, allowed for a deeper connection between the couple. Good development, but a bit slow, and while I love Harlow, especially in books to come, she was too “go with the flow” in some parts here… – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Ice Planet Honeymoon: Rukh & Harlow (IPB #4.5): different than the other novella, as it takes place DURING the previous book. Sweet! – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Ice Planet Holiday (IPB #5): Long novella about holiday celebrations, a glimpse at past couples and some babies, and a new couple, Claire and Ereven. Could have done with a little less Georgie, she was not a happy camper. – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian’s Prize (IPB #6): Tiffanny and Salukh’s story. Not my favourite, but I liked Salukh, thought the whole “she’s mine, she just doesn’t know it yet” and “let me pretend I’m only her friend” got a bit old. But the guy was sweet and he did his best. Somehow, I think from this book onwards the series changes a lot. I mean, it’s still smutty alien romance, but this was a slow burn, and from this point onwards, the sexy times get less and less, and while I do enjoy the character development, I really really liked the high amount of smut… – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian’s Mate (IPB #7): Finally we get to Josie and Haeden!!! And this I was expecting to be a enemies to lovers romance, and though it was to some degree, I needed the following: Haeden to give a bit more fight (he went from “I hate you” to “You’re my heart” way too fast!), and for Josie to be a little less selfish for the first half of the book. Seriously, the second part for me was easily a 4.5, but the start, it was slow and painful and I just wanted to slap Josie for how much she was hurting her mate. – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Having the Barbarian’s Baby (IPB #7.1): It took me ages to pass the mid part of this book because Megan was so annoying… not worth it. – 2.0 / 5 Stars

Ice Ice Babies (IPB #7.2): Nora struggling to take care of her babies and reconnect with her baby daddy (that is scared out of his mind about his family). Sweet, but they needed to communicate more. What ruins this book for me in hindsight, is the inconsistencies it has regarding some following books. – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian’s Touch (IPB #8): Super slow burn between Rokan and a new member of the human family in Non-Hoth, Lila. Look, I understand that they had some communication barriers between them, but so did Vektal and Georgie, and the first time they see each other, sexy stuff happens. Rokan and Lila wait until the end of the book. They’re sweet, super strong development, I like that Lila wants to be independent and learn, finally, but yeah, no… – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Calm (IPB #8.5): Ended up reading this one after book 9, so the Calm before the storm was ruined for me 😀 – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian’s Taming (IPB #9): I went into this one scared… Maddie was not nice on the previous book, and Hassan had tried to kidnap her sister to force resonance, so yeah, I was a bit scared. But WTF, this was fantastic! Good banter, great communication, Maddie learning how to be independent. In this series, assholes make the best characters! Super worth it, and at a moment I was in a rut with the slowness of the past books, this one picked it up again. Awesome. – 4.0 / 5 Stars

Aftershocks (IPB #9.5): This was an emotional read. No happy scenes here, just a few fav characters trying to deal with a world altering event… – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian’s Heart (IPB #10): Stacy and Pashov get a second change romance… this is a bit sad, because for most of the book is Stacy dealing with the loss of her mate, while trying to take care of her child and moving, while Pashov is trying to understand the gaps in his memory and how his mate fits into his life. I was not crazy about these 2, but the story was sweet, and I likes how they learned that they were still enough and still loved each other. – 3.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian’s Hope (IPB #11): This book changes completely the perspective of this series so far. This is a second chance romance for mated couple Asha and Hemalo – both Sa-Khui (no humans allowed on this coupling). I loved their story, how the events of losing their first child broke them as a couple, both misunderstanding what the other want needed or wanted. But they grow a lot and they communicate! I like Claire, but I did not think her POV was essential for this story. I think it was an attempt for us readers to connect, as neither of the main characters had any Earthly connections, but it just distracted a lot of the times. I loved her friendship with Asha though, and remember how in 7.2 I said there were a lot of inconsistencies with later books… this is mostly related to Asha. Timelines don’t match, Nora befriended her on 7.2 and then didn’t continue to get to know her? Weren’t Asha and Maylak cousins on 7.2? Now they were only ever enemies? This bugged me. But the story… I loved it! ❤ – 4.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian’s Choice (IPB #12): Another fully blue couple! By now we’ve known Farli for years and watched her grow, and now she gets her mate on a foreigner Mardok. This book answers SOME questions related to the origin of the Sa-Khui, and gets them in contact with a very advanced civilization again. This was fun. This book was super sweet and funny, and I was a bit worried until the last chapter, but I was happy they made the right choices. Slow burn on the sexy times… – 4.0 / 5 Stars

Barbarian’s Redemption (IPB #13): Once again, the hero of this book is an asshole on previous books, and for part of this one as well… Bek. In a nutshell, he manages to “buy” 5 human slaves, with the intent that they would resonate to the last 5 single members of his tribe. and it takes him a LONG time understanding what is wrong in this scenario. Ellie has been a slave for half of her life, so it takes awhile for her to come out of her shell. We end up getting a lot of character growth and a super sweet relationship. This one I enjoyed a lot, though of course, has issues. – 3.5 / 5 Stars

35298670-1Now, I did end up finishing a couple more books during the month that were not blue alien p**n, eheh. First I read Sapiens, A Brief History of Human Kind by Yuval Noah Harari. My boss decided to form a book club at work, and sent his team a copy of this one to start with. I ended up listening to it instead of getting to the physical copy, but this brought me back. When I was younger these were the types of books I strived for, and it was such an informative read, and gives a great integration of a series of historical/prehistorical events into how they play into current society. Loved it! This one was a hit for me, but as the “book club” does not have a defined theme yet, I’m a bit scared of what the next book will be about :D.

24920901Finally I went back to one of my favs. With the The Legacy by Elle Kennedy coming out this month, I decided I wanted to reread the Off-Campus series prior to reading the nee book, so I was able to finish The Deal.

Garrett and Hannah’s story still made me smile like crazy on this 3rd time reading this one. ❤ I’m now re-reading The Mistake, and I plan to finish the full series within the next few days. I also still have pending the last book from Briar U, so I might get to it as well.

So, now you tell me. Have you read any of these books? If you also fell into the IPB world, pls let me know :D.

August TBR

Augusttbr

This month I’ll point to reading 14 books at least, some that I had on my list before, other are ARCs, and I might be reading the Off-Campus series again, in preparation to The Goal‘s release. I’ll be reading a few of these with Cátia @The Girl Who Read Too Much.

TBR_august

  1. Highly Illogical Behavior by John Corey Whaley
  2. Heartfall by J.B. McGee
  3. The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson
  4. November 9 by Colleen Hoover
  5. Tyson Caine (Brothers in Arms #1) by Aleya Michelle
  6. The Year We Hid Away (The Ivy Years #2) by Sarina Bowen
  7. Blind Spot by Katana Collins
  8. Adulting 101 by Lisa Henry
  9. Wrong Question, Right Answer by Elle Casey
  10. The Form of Things Unknown by Robin Bridges
  11. The Proverbial Mr. Universe by Maria La Serra
  12. The Deal (Off-Campus #1) by Elle Kennedy – Re-read
  13. The Mistake (Off-Campus #2) by Elle Kennedy – Re-read
  14. The Score (Off-Campus #3) by Elle Kennedy – Re-read

Top Ten Tuesday: Recent 5 Star Reads

top 10 tuesday

Hello, welcome back to another Tuesday. Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is:

Ten Of My Most Recent 5 Star Reads (Or Ten Of The Best Books I’ve Read Recently if you don’t 5 star stuff…or you could do 5 of my latest five star reads & five of my most disappointing or 1 star reads)

Well, I do 5 Star books… a lot. I don’t give away full 5 stars easily, but I do rate a lot of books between 4.5 and 5 stars. That’s what I’m showing today: my last ten favorite reads, a.k.a., books I have 4.5 to 5 stars.


Slide1 Slide2 Slide3Slide4 Slide5 Slide6 Slide7 Slide8 Slide9 Slide10

Book Traveling Thursdays: A Book That Brings Me Joy!

btt

Hello, welcome back to another Book Traveling 168709Thursdays, which a weekly meme created by Cátia @The Girl Who Read Too Much and Danielle @Danielle’s Book Blog. The goal is to share the covers of a book related to that week’s theme, which you can see at the Goodreads group, indicating the original cover, the one of your country, your favorite and least favorite.

This week’s theme is “International Day of Happiness was celebrated a few days ago!! Choose a book that brings you joy“. I decided to use a book from one of my favorites New Adult series, Off-Campus, so I’m going with The Deal because this book cracked me up and just thinking about it puts a huge smile on my face :D.


Original COver:

This is the original US cover, and I have to say, for a self-published book, I really like it! Actually, I’ve become quite fond of the covers for this series. It doesn’t hurt that the guys are absolutely delicious.

COVER FROM MY COUNTRY (PORTUGAL) & COVER FROM THE COUNTRY I LIVE IN (SPAIN):

Obviously, we have no cover for Portugal, but there is a spanish edition, though I’m not sure if it serves just the Latin America or Spain as well… Either way, it it is. I don’t like it.

Favorite COVER(s):

                      

I think this book has such cute covers! The New Adult genre is full of less than stellar book covers, but these are quite good! I really like the Danish, the color and aesthetics are great. I also really like the German edition, yes, it’s a bit too summery, but it’s cute and sweet (though I’m not sure that Garrett would ever wear those pants!). And of course, the original… it just grew on me!

LEAST FAVORITE COVER(s):

                                                 

I really hate the Czech cover. It feels like the original one on steroids, and that’s not good. Then we have the Spanish, that we’ve already established that it’s not a good one, right?

The Score (Off-Campus #3) (Elle Kennedy)

thescore

He knows how to score, on and off the ice  

Allie Hayes is in crisis mode. With graduation looming, she still doesn’t have the first clue about what she’s going to do after college. To make matters worse, she’s nursing a broken heart thanks to the end of her longtime relationship. Wild rebound sex is definitely not the solution to her problems, but gorgeous hockey star Dean Di-Laurentis is impossible to resist. Just once, though, because even if her future is uncertain, it sure as heck won’t include the king of one-night stands.

It’ll take more than flashy moves to win her over

Dean always gets what he wants. Girls, grades, girls, recognition, girls…he’s a ladies man, all right, and he’s yet to meet a woman who’s immune to his charms. Until Allie. For one night, the feisty blonde rocked his entire world — and now she wants to be friends? Nope. It’s not over until he says it’s over. Dean is in full-on pursuit, but when life-rocking changes strike, he starts to wonder if maybe it’s time to stop focusing on scoring…and shoot for love.


When I started this book I seriously doubted that Allie and Dean could take the top spot that Hannah and Garrett were holding since I started this series. I knew the book would be entertaining, because it’s Dean, but I never expected it to be as deep and emotional and amazing as it turned out to be. Sorry Hannah and Garrett, I still love you guys, but Dean and Allie’s story totally stole my heart.

This book is so far the most entertaining of the series, and it literally had me laughing out loud at 3 in the morning, when I should have been sleeping by the way, and rushing home to finish the book in less than 24 hours.

Dean is such a great character! I mean, sure, he likes to sleep around and all, and honestly, what’s so wrong with that? But he’s always honest about his feelings and what he wants, and I like him all the more for that. Also, the reason why he uses the living room so much… is it weird that I find it kind of hot? Don’t answer that!!! I also loved how smart and normal he was… contrary to Garrett and Logan, Dean as an amazing family, who he loves and love him back and support the hell out of him, and that’s amazing. I also love the way he sees life and that he teaches Allie to love herself more and to not care about other people’s judgments.

thescore_1

Allie is wonderful as always. I’ve loved her since the first book, because she’s such a great friend to Hannah, but I loved finding out more about her and seeing how strong she was, fighting for her future and career for her own.

thescore_4

Their relationship starts out playfully, goes to casual hookups, to a friendship to a full fledged relationship when they realize just how much they care for each other. Honestly, the moment it happens, it warmed my heart, because they were so damn honest with each other. Their romance is beautiful!!!!

thescore_2

One of the best part of this series is still the bromances all around. Dean has amazing interactions with all the guys in this book, some amazing ones with Garrett, a very memorable one with Logan, but it’s his relationship with Beau Maxwell that warms my heart. Beau had made small appearances in The Deal and The Mistake, but he is one of Dean’s best friends, and it shows by their conversations, and by the fact that Beau is the first to know about Allie.

thescore_3

ohhh… gotta love the Beau and Dean’s Twilight talk, right?

Also, this book has little kids in it! And Dean Di-Laurentis with kids? CUTEST THING EVER!!!

The conflict in this book was the most real and heartbreaking of the three books, and for the first time, I didn’t see it coming. Well, not in the way it presented itself… it broke my heart. Seriously, I was crying, my heart was in pieces… But I love how they grew so much because of it…

All around, I loved this book. LOVED IT! The funny, the very sexy, the heartbreaking, the swoon-worthy moments… all of it. It was my favorite of the three, and after I finished it I just wanted to pick up The Deal again and read them all over again.

Now I can’t wait for the next one, Tucker’s story will be explosive :D.

The Mistake (Off-Campus #2) (Elle Kennedy )

themistake

He’s a player in more ways than one… 

College junior John Logan can get any girl he wants. For this hockey star, life is a parade of parties and hookups, but behind his killer grins and easygoing charm, he hides growing despair about the dead-end road he’ll be forced to walk after graduation. A sexy encounter with freshman Grace Ivers is just the distraction he needs, but when a thoughtless mistake pushes her away, Logan plans to spend his final year proving to her that he’s worth a second chance.

Now he’s going to need to up his game… 

After a less than stellar freshman year, Grace is back at Briar University, older, wiser, and so over the arrogant hockey player she nearly handed her V-card to. She’s not a charity case, and she’s not the quiet butterfly she was when they first hooked up. If Logan expects her to roll over and beg like all his other puck bunnies, he can think again. He wants her back? He’ll have to work for it. This time around, she’ll be the one in the driver’s seat, and she plans on driving him wild.


I won’t lie: I was a bit worried about the whole “Logan lusting after Hannah” thing that was going on at the end of The Deal. I mean, I get it, but I was worried. I was also thinking that he wasn’t into Hannah, not really, just what she and Garrett had… =)

I absolutely freaking loved the beginning of this book. It’s no secret that I’m a sucker for the male’s POV on NA books, and Logan was hilarious from the get go – even if he was complaining about his best friend doing the girl of his dreams and all :P.

Logan won my heart though. He’s freaking awesome. But my heart was breaking for most of the book, because of the future he was facing :(.

I loved Grace from the start, that girl was fierce! I loved her babbling when she was nervous, and how she didn’t totally crumble when her friend Ramona did what she did and the whole situation with Logan. She came back stronger, and OMG, did I love to see Logan beg her and do anything she wanted him to. I hated Ramona though… really really hated her… I mean, who does that?

themistake_2

I really liked the plot and the romance progression. One of my favorite things about these books is how we actually get to see the couple being a couple, and not only them getting together. And Logan and Grace as a couple? Visiting her dad and stuff? ADORABLE!

Another thing I really liked was seeing the constant presence of Garrett and Hannah – still love puppies as always, and the rest of the gang. I love the guys’ friendship on these books, it’s so freaking awesome. I loved that Tucker was aware of what was going on with Logan from the start, I loved that Dean made fun of Logan for his doubts, and that Garrett was the best friend he could have hoped for. I really liked to see Hannah be a part of the guys’ lives, it was so awesome to see her interacting with Dean and Logan without Garrett around.

themistake_1

Other great thing of this series – so often absent of NA and YA for that matter – is the inclusion and the importance of the parents. They are always important for the plot, on one way or another, and I love that.

I was squeaking at that little gem in the epilogue, because I needed to know that they would all be ok :D.

To end this review… I think I’m in love with this series!!

Top Ten Tuesday: Couples and Love Songs

top 10 tuesday

Hello, welcome back to another Tuesday. Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is:

This week is all about music & books. We previously did books we’d give theme songs to so feel free to do that! Or 10 songs I wish that were books (check out my love songs I wish were books for an example of what I mean) — Thanks to the couple people who suggested making this one an official topic. I don’t know why I hadn’t…I think I thought my post WAS for TTT in my head when I thought back to it.

Given that Valentine’s Day was just a couple of days ago, I decided to fuse some couples with some music. I only used NA couples for this week ;-). So here are some couples with some love lyrics that apply to them (in my opinion 🙂 ).


Slide1Slide2 Slide3 Slide4 Slide5 Slide6 Slide7 Slide8 Slide9 Slide10

The Deal (Off-Campus #1) (Elle Kennedy)

TheDeal

She’s about to make a deal with the college bad boy…

Hannah Wells has finally found someone who turns her on. But while she might be confident in every other area of her life, she’s carting around a full set of baggage when it comes to sex and seduction. If she wants to get her crush’s attention, she’ll have to step out of her comfort zone and make him take notice…even if it means tutoring the annoying, childish, cocky captain of the hockey team in exchange for a pretend date.

…and it’s going to be oh so good.

All Garrett Graham has ever wanted is to play professional hockey after graduation, but his plummeting GPA is threatening everything he’s worked so hard for. If helping a sarcastic brunette make another guy jealous will help him secure his position on the team, he’s all for it. But when one unexpected kiss leads to the wildest sex of both their lives, it doesn’t take long for Garrett to realize that pretend isn’t going to cut it. Now he just has to convince Hannah that the man she wants looks a lot like him.


I LOVE THIS BOOK! I’m totally in love with it. The book. The characters. The writing. EVERYTHING!! I’ve been seeing the book around everywhere on the blogosphere, and a lot of people recommending it, but I really didn’t know what I was missing. People… READ IT! If you like New Adult books, read this series, please!

I loved the writing. It’s fun and witty, and it’s dual POV – which I absolutely love. More, Garrett and Hannah had totally different voices, that complemented each other amazingly well. I started this book on Thursday night, and ended on Friday morning – with a little interruption for sleep. It was easy and fun!

Although it was a fun read, it deals with a few uneasy subjects, and I have to commend Elle Kennedy for the way she wrote Hannah and Garrett. From the very beginning of the book you know that Hannah was victim of sexual abuse when she was 15, yet she doesn’t see herself as a victim once during the book. She’s strong and independent and sure of herself… she’s beyond amazing. Garrett has his past too, and while both of them are “broken”, they aren’t really. It’s fresh and wonderful.

thedeal_2

Have I said how amazing Garrett and Hannah are? Oh well… their relationship is amazing! They go from slight enemies – because Hannah doesn’t want to help him, to friends, to great friends, to something more, and to everything. It’s a beautiful journey. I loved them both, individually and together. And Garrett, OMG, freaking Garrett! He’s beyond perfect! 😀 I’m a sucker for guys who know what they want and go after it ;-).

thedeal_1

Another great element of this book – and I’m guessing, the whole series – is the friendship between Garrett and his roommates and friends, Logan, Tucker and Dean. They tease each other, but they have such a family life, and it’s beyond endearing.

All in all I loved this book! I’ve already read a few sections more than once, and I need to get onto the second one soon. 😀

Bookish Bromances

bookishbromances

There’s one thing I love to see in books, sometimes even more than the romances themselves, and that is: a good bromance! I mean, seriously, is there anything better than watching/reading about friendshio? Especially between 2 guys? I think it’s magical :D.


1. Will & Jem – The Infernal Devices

Will and Jem are the definition of bromance. They are more than brothers. The way they love each other is epic!

(source)


2. Jace & Alec – The Mortal Instruments

Like good parabatai, the bond between these two is beyond words… now, I just wish that the show would do it justice.

(source)


3. Dorian & Chaol – Throne of Glass

I loved this friendship in the first book and I hated that Chaol’s relationship with Celaena made a dent in it. Luckily, it is all good now, right?

(source)


4. Harry & Ron – Harry Potter

Even fighting sometimes, they always had each other’s backs.


5. Tamlin & Lucien – A Court of Thorns and Roses

The way Lucien makes fun of Tamlin… LOL! These two are adorable!

(source)


6. Aedion & Rowan – Queen of Shadows

They are hostile for a moment there, but they develop a true bond and it’s beautiful.

(source)


7. Seth & RyanSecond Chances 

What Seth and Ryan go through during the two books of this series clearly shows the love that exists between them… #goals!

                                                   


8. Garrett, Logan, Dean & Tucker – Off-Campus

One of the funniest and greatest part of The Deal was watching the relationship between the 4 friends and roommates. I sill have to read the other 2 books that are already out, but they are awesome together.


9. Thorne & Kai – The Lunar Chronicles

Thorne and Kai share a wonderful moment in Winter that made them apt to join this list. I wish we had some more moments of bonding between the guys, but one can always imagine them :D.

(source)


10. Simon & Clive – Wallbanger

I’m cheating here, but come on, can you really blame me? Clive is the most awesome cat ever! And he bonds with Simon just like a person. I mean, Simon puts him on the counter to watch him cook, and goes retrieve him so he can sleep with the… it’s cute as hell!