Weekly Review Roundup

This week I read 5 books

I am going to start doing a weekly roundup so as to not post so many blog entries and focus on writing some helpful tips for Bookstagram and Blogging articles.

Weekly Reading:
🔸A Love by Design by Elizabeth Everett 4
🔸The Fraud Squad by Kyla Zhao 3.25
🔸Glitterland by Alexis Hall 5
🔸Please Report Your Bug Here by Josh Riedel
🔸Do I Know You? by Emily Wibberley; Austin Siegemund-Broka 4.5

The majority of these were published this week on January 17th! Let me know if any interest you and be sure to click the link if you would like to buy from an indie bookstore.

Reviews

Click to Buy from the Ripped Bodice!
A Love by Design (The Secret Scientists of London #3)


A Love by Design
by Elizabeth Everett
Pub Date – 1/17/23
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I have enjoyed all the books in this series! I love all the brilliant minds at Athena’s retreat.
This one is very different than the others besides the very smart successful woman. Margaret the FMC is in trade which has made her disrespectable in society.
Her childhood love is now a nobleman and their past isn’t exactly what she thought. Love a good second chance romance especially with a handsome but constantly saying the wrong thing mmc. But we soon find out why. He’s a sweetheart cinnamon roll with a reputation he may not deserve.
Loved the second chance romance!
Also like the other books those horrible patriarchal men’s group are causing trouble again, being frustrating af. But we will see if they can continue their crusade. Gross lol. But in that time it wouldn’t be realistic without them.


Synopsis:
You couldn’t design a better hero than the very eligible and extremely charming Earl Grantham. Unless, of course, you are Margaret Gault, who wants nothing to do with the man who broke her youthful heart.

Widowed and determined, Margaret Gault has returned to Athena’s Retreat and the welcoming arms of her fellow secret scientists with an ambitious plan in mind: to establish England’s first woman-owned engineering firm. But from the moment she sets foot in London her plans are threatened by greedy investors and—at literally every turn—the irritatingly attractive Earl Grantham, a man she can never forgive.

George Willis, the Earl Grantham, is thrilled that the woman he has loved since childhood has returned to London. Not as thrilling, however, is her decision to undertake an engineering commission from his political archnemesis. When Margaret’s future and Grantham’s parliamentary reforms come into conflict, Grantham must use every ounce of charm he possesses—along with his stunning good looks and flawless physique, of course—to win Margaret over to his cause.

Facing obstacles seemingly too large to dismantle, will Grantham and Margaret remain forever disconnected or can they find a way to bridge their differences, rekindle the passion of their youth, and construct a love built to last?


Thank you berkleyromance and netgalley for the e-ARC for my honest and voluntary review.

Click on the link to buy from The Ripped Bodice!
The Fraud Squad


The Fraud Squad
by Kyla Zhao
Pub Date – 1/17/23
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This was a cute read. Samantha wants a spot as a writer at a top magazine in Singapore but she doesn’t have the right connections. Her coworker (who is a socialite) at the pr firm she works at says she will help with another socialite. They start a fraud squad to help her take it till she makes it.
It was fun going to parties and getting pr jobs and getting higher up in society. Then things fell apart.
Wished that the romance had a bit more chemistry. It happened so fast and I may have just missed it. It’s women’s fiction and not romance so it’s not necessarily the focus. Enjoyed the friend groups and their social climbing planning.

About:
A working-class woman who infiltrates Singapore’s high society to fulfill her dreams risks losing everything in the process—including herself—in this propulsive novel by debut author Kyla Zhao.
For as long as she can remember, Samantha Song has dreamed of writing for a high-society magazine—and she’d do anything to get there. But the constant struggle to help her mom make ends meet and her low social status cause her dream to feel like a distant fantasy.

Now Samantha finds herself working at a drab PR firm. Living vicariously through her wealthy coworker and friend, Anya Chen, is the closest she’ll get to her ideal life. Until she meets Timothy Kingston: the disillusioned son of one of Singapore’s elite families—and Samantha’s one chance at infiltrating the high-society world to which she desperately wants to belong.

To Samantha’s surprise, Timothy and Anya both agree to help her make a name for herself on Singapore’s socialite scene. But the borrowed designer clothes and plus-ones to every glamorous event can only get her so far. The rest is on Samantha, and she’s determined to impress the editor in chief of Singapore’s poshest magazine. But the deeper Samantha wades into this fraud, the more she fears being exposed—especially with a mysterious gossip columnist on the prowl for dirt—forcing her to reconcile her pretense with who she really is before she loses it all.

Thank you berkleypub and netgalley for the e-ARC for my honest and voluntary review.


Click on the link to buy from The Ripped Bodice!
Glitterland (Spires)


Glitterland
Alexis Hall

I love opposites attract and add in some mental illness and its so relatable. Ash is a successful writer who also suffers from anxiety and depression. But you wouldn’t know it from his bespoke suits and his rigid temperament. He is completely detached from everyone but just happens upon a glittery looking pirate and his feels start to work again.
Nothing more fun to read for me than a reluctant Darcyish uptight character enchanted by a cute hilarious one with an adorable accent. A MC that just doesn’t want the romance but it keeps happening. Or they don’t quite understand or believe that romance is happening to them. Definitely don’t believe they deserve it or the happiness that it is bringing. The banter between them is my favorite since Ash has a very dry humor and he’s snappy and Darian, his glitter pirate just laughs and holds him closer. Like he is a silly grumpy cat that needs more snuggles.
There was definitely a lot of open door steam and talk of suidice and self harm so be aware if those trigger or aren’t things you want to read about.
I have read a lot of his books and I have enjoyed them all but so far this may be my favorite! The chemistry between these two made me want more chapters!

Thank you sourcebookscasa and netgalley for the e-ARC for my honest and voluntary review.

Synopsis:
In the past, the universe is a glitterball I hold in the palm of my hand.

In the past, I am brilliant and I am happy and my every tomorrow is madness.

In the past, I am soaring, and falling, and breaking, and lost.

And now, there is only this.

Once the golden boy of the English literary scene, now a clinically depressed writer of pulp crime fiction, Ash Winters has given up on hope, happiness, and―most of all―himself. He lives his life between the cycles of his illness, haunted by the ghosts of other people’s expectations.

Then a chance encounter throws him into the path of Essex-born Darian Taylor. Flashy and loud, radiant and full of life, Darian couldn’t be more different…and yet he makes Ash laugh, reminding him of what it’s like to step beyond the boundaries of his anxiety. But Ash has been living in his own shadow for so long that he can no longer see a way out. Can a man who doesn’t trust himself ever trust in happiness? And how can someone who doesn’t believe in happiness ever fight for his own?

Click on the link to buy from The Ripped Bodice!
Please Report Your Bug Here: A Novel


Please Report Your Bug Here
Josh Riedel

This book was so interesting. The concept was intriguing for sure. I lived in SF for years and commuted to the peninsula, SJ, Palo Alto etc. So I thought it was fun traveling through the areas I know. And the startup tech industry living in this area you are bound to know ppl who work on that field.
But this is tech heavy and it focuses on a dating app that is the startup company. It starts to get interesting when the startup is swallowed by the corporation.
There is a bug, and a fascinating new app that can transport people anywhere instantaneously. But there are a lot of interested parties and those that don’t know how to fix the issue that has popped up.
✨Maybe spoiler✨
There was an alternate dimension that was giving me wrinkle in time vibes. But without that oily demon that was the humans in this story.

Thank you henryholtbooks and netgalley for the e-ARC for my honest and voluntary review.

Synopsis:
Introducing Josh Riedel’s adrenaline-packed debut novel about a dating app employee who discovers a glitch that transports him to other worlds.

Once you sign an NDA it’s good for life. Meaning legally, I shouldn’t tell you this story. But I have to.

A college grad with the six-figure debt to prove it, Ethan Block views San Francisco as the place to be. Yet his job at hot new dating app DateDate is a far cry from what he envisioned. Instead of making the world a better place, he reviews flagged photo queues, overworked and stressed out. But that’s about to change.

Reeling from a breakup, Ethan decides to view his algorithmically matched soulmate on DateDate. He overrides the system and clicks on the profile. Then, he disappears. One minute, he’s in a windowless office, and the next, he’s in a field of endless grass, gasping for air. When Ethan snaps back to DateDate HQ, he’s convinced a coding issue caused the blip. Except for anyone to believe him, he’ll need evidence. As Ethan embarks on a wild goose chase, moving from dingy startup think tanks to Silicon Valley’s dominant tech conglomerate, it becomes clear that there’s more to DateDate than meets the eye. With the stakes rising, and a new world at risk, Ethan must choose who—and what—he believes in.

Adventurous and hypertimely, Please Report Your Bug Here is an inventive millennial coming-of-age story, a dark exploration of the corruption now synonymous with Big Tech, and, above all, a testament to the power of human connection in our digital era.

Click on the link to buy from The Ripped Bodice!
Do I Know You?

Do I Know You?
by Emily Wibberley; Austin Siegemund-Broka

This is the 2nd book I’ve read by them and I love the way they weave a story.
This is a married couple on an anniversary trip but they gave disconnected. As they fake date eachother and rekindle their love they delve into the root of their issues.
It’s so important to date your spouse. Everyone changes as they grow and mature. Work and life can get in the way but it’s important that you don’t lose sight of your relationship. You may end up just sharing a space with someone you don’t know.
This was such a sweet book! Loved their new buddy and his instalove mentality. He definitely helped out both of them.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐💫

Thank you berkleyromance and netgalley for the e-ARC for my honest and voluntary review.

Synopsis:
When a couple starts to feel like they’re married to a stranger, a flirtatious game of pretend becomes the spark they need to reignite their relationship.

Eliza and Graham are anticipating an anything-but-sexy, weeklong getaway to celebrate their five-year anniversary. Nestled on the Northern California coastline, the resort prides itself on being a destination for those in love and those looking to find it. For Eliza and Graham, it might as well be a vacation with a roommate.

When a well-meaning guest mistakes Eliza and Graham for being single and introduces them at the hotel bar, they don’t correct him. Suddenly, they’re pretending to be perfect strangers and it’s unexpectedly…fun? Eliza and Graham find themselves flirting like it’s their first date, and waiting with butterflies in their stomach for the other to text back.

Everyone at the retreat can sense the electric chemistry between Eliza and Graham’s alter egos. But when their scintillating game of roleplaying ends, will they still feel the heat?

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