Book Review: ALL LINED UP + ALL BROKE DOWN by Cora Carmack [Cora Carmack Bundle!]

Genre: NA, Romance

18505845

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Goodreads Summary:

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Cora Carmack follows up her trio of hits—Losing It, Faking It, and Finding It—with this thrilling first novel in an explosive series bursting with the Texas flavor, edge, and steamy romance of Friday Night Lights.

In Texas, two things are cherished above all else—football and gossip. My life has always been ruled by both.

Dallas Cole loathes football. That’s what happens when you spend your whole childhood coming in second to a sport. College is her time to step out of the bleachers, and put the playing field (and the players) in her past.

But life doesn’t always go as planned. As if going to the same college as her football star ex wasn’t bad enough, her father, a Texas high school coaching phenom, has decided to make the jump to college ball… as the new head coach at Rusk University. Dallas finds herself in the shadows of her father and football all over again.

Carson McClain is determined to go from second-string quarterback to the starting line-up. He needs the scholarship and the future that football provides. But when a beautiful redhead literally falls into his life, his focus is more than tested. It’s obliterated.

Dallas doesn’t know Carson is on the team. Carson doesn’t know that Dallas is his new coach’s daughter.

And neither of them know how to walk away from the attraction they feel.

20525621

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Goodreads Summary:

Dylan fights for lost causes. Probably because she used to be one.

Environmental issues, civil rights, corrupt corporations, and politicians you name it, she’s probably been involved in a protest. When her latest cause lands her in jail overnight, she meets Silas Moore. He’s in for a different kind of fighting. And though he’s arrogant and infuriating, she can’t help being fascinated with him. Yet another lost cause.

Football and trouble are the only things that have ever come naturally to Silas. And it’s trouble that lands him in a cell next to do-gooder Dylan. He’s met girls like her before fixers, he calls them, desperate to heal the damage and make him into their ideal boyfriend. But he doesn’t think he’s broken, and he definitely doesn’t need a girlfriend trying to change him. Until, that is, his anger issues and rash decisions threaten the only thing he really cares about: his spot on the Rusk University football team. Dylan might just be the perfect girl to help.

Because Silas Moore needs some fixing after all.

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Book Review: IN THE LAND OF TEA AND RAVENS by R.K. Ryals

Genre: Fantasy, Romance

Pages: 149

Released on: November 15th, 2014

23474852

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Goodreads Summary:

Sitting on the porch of a decaying house, an old brown mug sat, the top chipped, a warm breeze brushing against sun-heated ceramic.

“There is nothing more potent than a cup of tea,” Old Ma’am once told her.

Twenty-year-old Lyric Mason lifted the mug, her sad eyes drawn to its flaw. She’d come home to say goodbye to her grandmother and to take over an eerie family legacy that would forever burden her.

She hadn’t count on twenty-five-year-old Grayson Kramer.

***

“The women in that family will drive you insane,” the town said. “They’ll steal your heart and destroy your soul,” they promised.

Despite himself, troubled Grayson was fascinated by Lyric, by the rumors and accusations that surrounded her. Prison had changed him and guilt had nearly destroyed him.

It was the guilt that would draw them together.

For in Hiccup, Mississippi, a decrepit house sat, the home feared by the locals, a group of ravens perching on the roof. In this house, there was a tea cup full of secrets held by a woman Grayson couldn’t ignore.

My Review:

This book is unlike anything I’ve ever read. And, before I go any further, the cover is absolutely gorgeous. I love it.

First of all, you got this elaborate and enthralling tale of a Tea Girl and it’s interwoven in the story to give an insight, a backstory, to our main character and her family. I have never read a book where the main character’s special “ability” is tea. Add the fact that I am a major tea addict, and this is a tasty recipe for a good read.

I loved how different and unique this book was. The main character was such a weird but intriguing girl; she is massively evasive but also straight forward at the same time. It’s so weird to describe but I really loved the main character of Lyric. I think the incorporation of the backstory helps, especially because the book is so short. It’s a good way to tell the Tea Girl’s backstory but also show Lyric’s family history – so we know she’s not just a crazy girl obsessed with tea (like I am).

Lyric and Grayson’s relationship was so raw and intense, but also kind of fucked? Sorry for my language but that felt appropriate. They both have such demons inside them and they battle with so much but together, it’s like they let loose and accept their demons. They laugh at things that shouldn’t be funny to most, they stay in creepy houses where most would run the other direction… They’re so odd that they’re perfect for each other. And they ultimately help each other in a lot of ways. Learning to trust, to explore, to breathe… it’s so beautifully written that I fell in love with them.

I think the key to this book is the writing style. It’s so unique and vivd without the author dwelling on an image for too long. And the way this author writes or describes things, it’s like a song – it all flows so eloquently. I absolutely loved it.

The main plot of this story centers a lot on Lyric and Grayson’s relationship and learning to trust. Mixed in with the town’s own prejudice against Lyric and her family, it makes for some good small town drama. I did wish there was more going on with the plot though. I think that just contributes to the fact that the book is so short – I mean it’s only 140 some odd pages. But I really wish there was more to it.

Overall, I really appreciate the uniqueness of this book, the idea of a Tea Girl, and a man who carries so much guilt that he finds himself placated by a cup of tea and the girl who serves it. Great read.

MY RATING: 4/5