In absolutely shocking news, I appear to have read 22 titles from my #FallInLoveBingo TBR. Not all of those books I read managed to make a square on the board because I read a few books that would have all fulfilled the same prompts. Oh, and also, in arguably more important news, I finished #FallInLoveBingo! I’m posting this now with the optimistic title #FallInLoveBingo Wrap Up: Take One because I’m really hoping to be able to complete the entire board again. It turns out I’m really attached to these prompts and also, I have a million more books on my TBR. You know, approximately. But for now, let’s wrap this thing up, shall we?
Meddling Characters: With You Forever by Chloe Liese
I have an ARC Review for this book, but the short version is that I loved this one. It’s sweet with great chronic illness representation, as well as autism representation. It also has pets that I adored and the Bergman brothers are, as always, precious beans. And definitely plenty of meddling! (Please note, this was actually on my TBR! Go me!)
Dancer: Sweet Filthy Boy by Christina Lauren
Another book that was actually on my TBR, so that’s a lovely surprise. Sweet Filthy Boy features Mia, a former dancer who was in an accident that means her dreams of being a professional dancer were cut tragically short. She’s now a college graduate who got really drunk in Vegas and married Ansel (a very attractive French man) so now she’s spending her summer in Paris and trying to figure out her life. I really enjoyed this one, although book two is so far my preferred book in the series.
Series Continuation: Sweet Revenge by Rebecca Zanetti
Something about this romantic suspense series sucked me in and I basically devoured all four books in the series within a few weeks. Sweet Revenge is book two and follows the oldest of the Grey brothers and his falling in love with the mysterious bartender in a small town. It’s honestly a rather lovely book, despite the very intense things happening. But I like the way Zanetti writes her suspense because I feel like the women wind up participating more than just being hapless bystanders.
Sweater Weather: Good Twin Gone Country by Jessica Lemmon
Although I didn’t like this one quite as much as the first book I read by Jessica Lemmon in this series, I still love her writing style. Plus, she does a great job writing chemistry between her characters. So still a good time, but I preferred Second Chance Love Song. (Also, a third book on my TBR!)
Latinx Main Character: Serving Sin by Angelina M. Lopez
Serving Sin is my favorite book of the Filthy Rich series, which is saying something because I really enjoyed the other two books too. But Cenobia is probably one of my favorite characters I’ve read this year. She’s written in a way that feels so nuanced and I just love how she channeled her trauma and her passions into her life. (You can find my ARC Review here.)
Astrology: Count Your Lucky Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur
I really want more books to make casual astrological references because it’s something I really love. I counted my lucky stars though that I had an ARC of Count Your Lucky Stars by Alexandria Bellefleur, which I knew would deliver the astrology content I was craving and it did! Alongside this really marvelous paragraph about how sometimes when you watch a romantic comedy, you just want to scream at people to communicate and talk about their feelings, while I wanted Margot and Olivia to do exactly that. I think my tolerance for not communicating in an estranged friends to lovers situation was shorter than normal and that I should re-read this at another time when I have more patience. As it stands, I really loved the book, but it wasn’t (in my opinion) as good as the first two books in the series.
Friend Recommendation: Three-Way Split by Elia Winters
I can’t quite figure out how to articulate why I didn’t love this book because it was good, but something about the catalysts for the quick transitions from each stage of the relationships didn’t quite work for me as well as I hoped. I enjoyed the book, but didn’t love it the way Dani did, but I’m really glad I read it!
Black Love: Reel by Kennedy Ryan
Say hello to one of my favorite books of the year! Reel was so good, y’all. Kennedy Ryan is always so talented, but wow did her talent really shine in Reel. I absolutely loved this one and cannot recommend it enough, tbh. The Hollywood elements are great and the historical aspect she weaves in is so, so good. Just… Phenomenal.
Character Description You Love: Boss in the Bedsheets by Kate Canterbary
I really love Kate Canterbary, y’all. This was my third book from her and I think you’ll see her name on the list of my favorite new to me authors at the end of the year, for sure. Anyway, despite my love of Kate Canterbary, I think this one isn’t as strong as the other two I’ve read because of the trope, BUT I loved it all the same. It’s just boss/employee situations don’t usually work for me. This one was unusual, but still. I did, however, love Zelda, so much. She’s a self-proclaimed mess and like, same, girl. So I loved her in all her messy glory.
Witches: Xeni by Rebekah Weatherspoon
I didn’t intend to use Xeni for this prompt, but when it turned out Xeni was a modern witch, I felt like it was too perfect to pass up! This is also one of the times I did a poll on twitter to help me choose which book to read next and I think everyone who voted was very sensible because I really enjoyed this one. I don’t know that I loved it as much as I had built it up in my head, but I really enjoyed it nevertheless. (This book was on my TBR, but in a different category!)
Hyped: A Touch of Darkness by Scarlett St. Clair
Despite the hype, I wasn’t really sure I would like this book. However, while not a new favorite, I rather enjoyed my time in this world. It was kind of fun and a unique world-building that almost made sense to me. I think I’ll probably continue on in the series.
New Release: Bombshell by Sarah MacLean
Another book actually on my TBR… I’m astonished. Anyway, here’s a link to my ARC review, of which the tl;dr version is Caleb and Sesily lived up to the hype for me!!! I feel like I’d been waiting for their book for SO LONG and it finally arrived and it was glorious. I definitely recommend.
HEA: The Heiress Hunt by Joanna Shupe
I have an ARC review of The Heiress Hunt as well, where the tl;dr boils down to I’m excited about the next books in the series, but ultimately, The Heiress Hunt fell short for me.
Re-Read: Angels’ Blood by Nalini Singh
I’m still in the midst of my re-read of Guild Hunters which I didn’t actually intend to re-read, but, well, I really wanted to re-read Angels’ Blood randomly and then lo’ and behold, I’m on Archangel’s Viper now and determined to finish a full series re-read before I get the joy of reading Archangel’s Light, which comes out tomorrow… That will be a struggle.
Library Book: Wreckless by Katie Golding
I adored this audiobook and can definitely see myself re-listening to it. The Italian accent… Ah, a delight! Anyway, I would definitely recommend listening to this one. I also have an ARC Review of this one, but I’ve more or less done a tl;dr here, which is me emphasizing how much I enjoyed this one.
Pumpkin: The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood
I am pretty in love with The Love Hypothesis, tbh. It was one of my favorite books of the last three months. Something about it just spoke to me. I know it’s a controversial favorite, but… It’s definitely a favorite for me. I really love the relationship between Olive and Adam. I adored the writing. It’s so wonderful.
HGTV Vibes: The Shaadi Set-Up by Lillie Vale
I loved this book, honestly. There were a few things that kept me from giving it a full five stars, but I thought the Red vibes and second chance romance landed so well that I forgave the elements I didn’t love. I really adore romances with HGTV type elements too, so this was bound to be a winner. It made me wish I was handy, but I haven’t even managed to get my gallery wall pieces hung up because I’ve lost my hammer. Anyway, if hate to love second chance vibes sounds like your thing, I would definitely recommend giving this book a shot.
Sapphic Representation: A Little Light Mischief by Cat Sebastian
This historical sapphic novella was rather fun and I liked the sort of revenge element. My issue is that I wanted more. It’s not uncommon that I want to know what happens after the HFN moment, but it was an extreme craving I experienced here in this book because there’s so much more to see with these two in my opinion!
Sub-Genre You Rarely Read: The Enforcer by Katrina Jackson
I still have no idea what sub-genre you would even consider The Enforcer, but the romantic suspense/erotica blend is in a class of its own as far as my reading goes. I love this series and I think it’s basically an exception. Maybe you could stretch and say this lines up with my Cate C. Wells reads, but either way, not a large portion of my reads at all. Anyway, this book made me want to fly to Italy and forget that I am gluten intolerant and just eat my way through the country, preferably without having to hide from some mafia people.
Woman in Tech: Total Surrender by Rebecca Zanetti
Please don’t look up the plot if you think you want to read this series, but just know that the heroine is a hacker. It concludes the Sin Brothers series and ties a lot of elements together in a very satisfying way. I enjoyed the series overall, though I don’t think romantic suspense will ever take over as my preferred subgenre.
Book by Favorite Author: Archangel’s Storm by Nalini Singh
My Guild Hunters reread in preparation for Archangel’s Light was really a gift and re-reading Archangel’s Storm was once again such a great experience. I love Jason and Mahiya. I love the princess being under-estimated and using the fact that people will doubt her to her advantage. It’s a perfectly wonderful experience.
Sick Bed Scene: Battle Royal by Lucy Parker
I love Lucy Parker’s writing so much. This is not my favorite of her sick bed scenes, but I do love Dominic and Sylvie and the cat. Basically this book is an utter delight and I am very much looking forward to more from Lucy Parker in this world even while I am still dragging my feet on finishing up the London Celebrities series. She somehow became a break in case of emergency author off of one book and I am always so reluctant to break the glass despite having like five books left in her backlist at the moment.
Red: The Belle and the Beard by Kate Canterbary
Hello, I am obsessed with this book. I have 22 highlights, which is in and of itself a Red reference, but also, the “Stay Stay Stay” vibes and the phrase “all too well” appears so I decided it counts. Plus, something about the overall Fall vibes works for the album too. Listen, I don’t have to make sense, just trust me on this one. Anyway, if you’ve not read this book yet, I would definitely recommend it.
Forehead Kiss: A Lot Like Adiós by Alexis Daria
So the combination of the estranged friends to lovers with second chance vibes because they had a one time thing definitely worked for me here. Being young and not really knowing what you want to do in life is relatable af, so I can’t say I blamed either party for the actions they took in the immediate aftermath. But the way Michelle goes after what she wants? Impeccable. I love a woman who is like, “Look, you can’t disappear from my life then waltz back in without thinking I’m going to try and figure out what happened.” She’s great. And this book was way sexier than I was expecting for some reason. I definitely recommend. Also, I think there were two forehead kisses? Maybe more? I loved it.
Jewish Main Character:
We Can’t Keep Meeting Like This by Rachel Lynn Solomon
Okay, listen, this is unfair of me because these characters are literal teenagers, but the amount that I was internally screaming JUST TALK TO ONE ANOTHER really dampened my overall enjoyment of this book. Which is not to say it’s a bad book, but truly, if you hate when characters don’t talk to one another, I would skip it. And if you’re in a weird mood like I was where your patience for a very normal thing is at an all time low, wait to read it when you’re in a different mood. Otherwise, this book was excellent and I would recommend.
And there you have the twenty five books I read for my first run through #FallInLoveBingo! I hope you enjoyed getting my quick thoughts on these reads. I will admit, I always love posting them.