Here we are today with my next round of most recent reads. It’s mostly romance here today (as per usual, really), apart from one book club read. Just before we jump in today, the final review in this post—Undercover Bromance, is a spoiler review. I’ve put a warning just before the review, but wanted to mention it here too.
With that out of the way, let’s get into it.
Barbarian Alien & Barbarian Lover (Ice Planet Barbarians #2 & #3) by Ruby Dixon
I read these in early August but it made no sense to share the reviews of them before I talked about having read book one, so they’re being tacked on here. I had a lot of fun reading these two—I get through them quite quickly, and it’s a nice thing to just de-stress with. I have to say that book one is still my favourite, though I enjoyed both of these. I thought I’d love Liz, but when it came to her story (in book two), she kind of annoyed me for most of it. As for Kira (book three), I really enjoyed her as a character, but I think one of the main pot points was handled kind of badly. Obviously, I’m trying to avoid spoilers here but I thought Ruby Dixon did a big disservice to both the character of Kira and her readers by making that doing a very quick fix-up of that issue. That being said, I am still really enjoying this series for the most part and I’m hoping to make time for the next book later in the month.
First Comes Scandal (Rokesbys #4) by Julia Quinn
I’ve been doing my best lately to actually keep up with some of the series I’ve started, so I’m obviously pretty happy to be finishing off this series. I only started this one earlier this year, so it isn’t nearly as bad as some of the others, but it definitely still counts! I’ll be doing a post talking about this one in far more detail in just a few day’s time, so I’m going to be kind of vague here. So, I really enjoyed this one, as I did this entire series. I was definitely nervous about it because I’d not really enjoyed the last few books in the Bridgertons series, and I wasn’t sure if I’d have a similar experience here, but thankfully, it was just as good as the others. If you’re interested in hearing more, check back late next week for those full thoughts.
Act Your Age, Eve Brown (The Brown Sisters #3) by Talia Hibbert
Look at me finishing up another series. I’d been putting this one off because I’d loved both Chloe and Dani’s stories, and I wasn’t convinced Talia Hibbert could pull off a hat trick. But she totally did, and now here I am, still trying to work out which of the Brown sisters I love best. Eve is a joy to read about—she is a burst of sunshine and hilarious, but I could definitely relate to the way she feels a bit lost and feels like a bit of a chaotic mess. I love how grumpy Jacob is—I can definitely relate to that too, and the way they play off each other is fantastic. I loved the B&B setting as well—this is the second romance I’ve read with that setting lately, and I think it might be a new favourite trope of mine—I don’t know why but it just makes for some extra adorable times. I think the only thing that didn’t work for me was actually the rest of the Brown’s—I thought I’d be happy to see them pop up, but I didn’t really like the way they treated Eve at various points in here. Other than that, I loved every second of this.
Terra Nullius by Claire G. Coleman
I’m feeling pretty conflicted about this one, so this review might be a bit of a mess. But this was our August pick for the Last To Read Book Club, which I co-host with my besties, Mel and Lana. This was our first book back after a little hiatus, and it was one that had been on my radar for a while. I think I went through basically every emotion while reading this book—at first, I was a little uncertain, then angry, sad, angry again, shocked, and, you guessed it, angry again. I found it extremely hard to read because of the subject matter—there are some very confronting moments taken from Australia’s history about the treatment of First Nations people, and I found the parts about children particularly difficult to read. But there’s also another side to this book, which I don’t want to spoil, but I found that some of that went entirely over my head. I had a basic idea of what was happening, but I struggled to keep up with it, especially as it’s a drastic change from the first section of the book. I’m excited to be able to discuss this with everyone during our liveshow this Sunday night.
Undercover Bromance (The Bromance Book Club #2) by Lyssa Kay Adams
Of course, I immediately had to get back into romance. I’d also been holding off on this one because I didn’t love book one as much as I was anticipating. I had higher hopes for this one, but I thought I ended up feeling the same about this one until I sat down to write this review. I loved Mack—he honestly has a heart of gold, and we do not deserve him, but I lowkey hated Liv. This isn’t really new—I thought Liv was literally the worst in book one, and my opinion on her really didn’t change in this one. She is extremely judgmental I loved the side characters—Rosie, in particular, but also the Russian (he is the shining light of this series). At this point, I’m only continuing the series so I can get to his book.
This brings me to the thing I struggled with the most—this one is a sort of #MeToo-driven revenge plot. I support the movement, and I think people who speak up about sexual abuse and harassment should be believed, but this book made it feel cheap to me. For one, Liv never experiences any harassment from that character herself, but she instead takes it upon herself to bring him down. Yes, people who use their positions of power to belittle, harass and assault people don’t deserve to keep those positions, but essentially stalking people and discovering the names of survivors to force them to come forward is not the way to go about it. The people who have left those situations don’t deserve to be re-traumatised over it because of your saviour complex, Liv.
Apparently, I’m in the minority of people who saw a problem with this, because a lot of the reviews I’m seeing on Goodreads say that they liked that aspect and how it was dealt with. As I said, I’m only continuing this for the Russian.
And that’s it for today. Have you read any of these? Are any on your TBR?