The Happy Ever After Playlist

⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

the happy ever after playlist book by abby jimenez picture
Picture taken by me. Buy book on Amazon.

Author: Abby Jimenez

Published: April 14, 2020

Pages: 401

Series: The Friend Zone, #2

Goodreads rating: 4.26/5

For fans of: Romance, Contemporary Romance, Domestic Fiction, The Friend Zone, Beach Read

Good to know before you read: explicit sex scenes, substance abuse, grief

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Two years after losing her fiancé, Sloan Monroe still can’t seem to get her life back on track. But one trouble-making pup with a “take me home” look in his eyes is about to change everything. With her new pet by her side, Sloan finally starts to feel more like herself. Then, after weeks of unanswered texts, Tucker’s owner reaches out. He’s a musician on tour in Australia. And bottom line: He wants Tucker back.

Well, Sloan’s not about to give up her dog without a fight. But what if this Jason guy really loves Tucker? As their flirty texts turn into long calls, Sloan can’t deny a connection. Jason is hot and nice and funny. There’s no telling what could happen when they meet in person. The question is: With his music career on the rise, how long will Jason really stick around? And is it possible for Sloan to survive another heartbreak?

My Mini Review:

I had a love-hate relationship with this book. For a book with the word “happy” in the title, it was actually really sad. The story dealt with themes such as overcoming grief, and struggling with substance abuse. It started out as a really nice story with a cute dog linking these two strangers together. Then, when I thought the story was all done and these two people had overcome all their differences and the main character had struggled more than enough, the story didn’t end. Instead, the plot went on this dramatic downward spiral with no end in sight and a lot of what I thought were unnecessary struggles and depressing moments.

It surprises me when almost all the characters in a book are all likeable, but unique in their own ways. My favorite of course was Tucker, since I am a sucker for smart dogs. I also enjoyed the friendship between Sloan and Kristen. The romance was a slow-burn one, which I felt was realistic given the fact that Sloan was still grieving. I liked that Sloan and Jason had good relationship role models, starting with their parents, and in Kristen and Josh. There was an emphasis on caring for family and friends and being there for them when they need you. I recommend this book if you love Romance and you can deal with some unnecessary drama.

Have you read this one? Are you planning to read it? Let me know your thoughts and opinions in the comments!

Pandemonium

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

pandemonium by willow anderson
Buy on Amazon

Author: Willow Anderson

Published: April 27, 2020

Pages: 360

Goodreads Rating: 4.55/5

For fans of: Fantasy, Caraval, and the Night Circus

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the author. I was not paid for this review, and all opinions are my own. If you are interested in purchasing this book, please consider using my Amazon affiliate link (by clicking on the top or bottom pictures) and helping a fellow book blogger out 🙂 I will receive a small fee from Amazon, but your book will still cost the same.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Lace Ashburn was only twelve years old when she witnessed a murder behind Pandemonium’s grandeur – a strange, magical traveling show where admittance is hard to gain. With a dead Ringmaster and his murderer in jail, Pandemonium packed up and fled in the middle of the night, remaining missing for five years.

When Lace’s older brother steps up to take the throne of Falhaven, he announces not only the return of Pandemonium but an arranged marriage for her with their neighboring country’s prince. With less than a week to discover a way to keep her freedom from her fiancé, Lace finds her way back into the heart of Pandemonium.

With a new Ringmaster heading Pandemonium, Lace is pulled into a competition run by the strange show with an invaluable prize at the end should she win. Paired together with a mysterious partner, Lace fights through the contest to keep not only her independence but her heart safe.

Come one, come all, to the show that will enthrall…welcome to Pandemonium where in order to win, you must lose it all.

My Review:

This was a great story. It was a surprisingly good mix of the competition trope (one of my favorite tropes) and a love triangle (one of my least favorite tropes). Thankfully, the romance aspect was subtle and did not take center stage. The ring master was a morally gray character which I always find enjoyable. Lace was a strong female character, but without an aggressive disposition and not afraid to show some vulnerability at times.

I enjoyed the strong friendship between Lace and her sister, they had a bond I don’t see too often in Fantasy books. Lately, I’ve been reading a lot of sibling rivalry and sisters being pitted against each other, and this change was refreshing.

The plot developed with a sense of urgency, but without sacrificing any details or descriptions. There is a mysterious undertone to the story which I enjoyed. As a reader I was able to compete and solve the riddles and clues alongside Lace. I do love a good twist and Anderson definitely delivered. I highly recommend this book to all Fantasy fans!

Bookish Bucket List

Recap of Last Week:

Last week I added: read Wuthering Heights, visit Paris, France, and own the Blood of Eden series to my list.

This week:

Go to BookCon

I was so sad I missed BookCon this year. It looked like a lot of fun and I have never been to one. It feels like something I would really enjoy. I need to gather a few of my bookworms friends and we need to plan a visit to one of these. Maybe next year.

My Bookstagram

Own the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series by Laini Taylor

I really loved all these books. I think her writing is close to hypnotic, but so realistic at the same time. Even though this world is full of magic, I felt like any day I could just encounter one of these doors and step into it myself.

My bookstagram

Have dinner inside the Beauty and the Beast castle at Disney World

I have been to Disney World many times. It might sound cliché, but to me it is the happiest place on Earth. The scenery, the music, and the characters are all presented with great care and attention to detail. Even the employees are very well trained, and one of their main jobs is to make you smile. Even though I have been there many times, I have never dined inside the Beauty and the Beast castle, mostly because it’s so hard to get a reservation. Having just read A Curse do Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer made me a bit nostalgic for Beauty and the Beast. Now I want to go to the castle and “Be their Guest.”

My bookstagram

Item marked off:

I finally own all the Throne of Glass books! Sure, some of them are hardback and some are paperback, but don’t judge me 🙂

What are some book related things you wish to do?