Technically, this is a 2-week wrap-up, and it was a GREAT two weeks! I posted my March Wrap-Up last week instead of the weekly version, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention how much things turned around for me over the last two weeks. I had more 5-star reads over the last two weeks than I did in the entire month of March, and a lot of that was the result of exploring unexpected options.

Eye-catching covers had me checking out new releases from two new-to-me authors. The cover for Juniper Bean Resorts to Murder is gorgeous and unique, and the storyline is just as one-of-a-kind. It’s a great mix of slow burn roommates romance and cozy murder mystery, with vibes that are soft, funny, and sprinkled with a bit of emotion. I also tried Letizia Lorini’s debut, Desserts for Stressed People, which was deliciously messy. Our heroine gets herself into quite the pickle, and the unpredictable storyline felt like a mix of Tis the Season for Revenge, You’ve Got Mail, and The Hating Game. I sincerely enjoyed both books!

I also got ahead on a few ARC/ALCs. I was ecstatic when I received an early audio version of Emily Henry’s Happy Place, and I devoured it quickly. With stellar narration from Julia Whelan and a second chance romance so angsty that it was physically painful, it was quite the reading experience. I became more engrossed with every chapter, and I teared up on multiple occasions. Outstanding. I also tried Julie Soto’s debut novel, Forget Me Not. It’s another second chance romance, and the audio was also excellent. It’s got a swoony, unconventional hero, and I loved the vibes. I’m rarely a fan of second chance romances, but both books won me over in a big way.

Then I read a few new releases from authors I’ve enjoyed in the past. The Prodigal was twisty and bingeable, with fantastic chemistry and banter. Easily one of my new favorites from Kristy Marie. I also read Duke, the newest from Kayley Loring and Connor Crais. I still vastly prefer Loring’s solo releases, but it was a light and sexy single dad romance and a solid addition to the series. Finally, I listened to the newest from Trish Doller, which did not live up to my love of her other books. The instant connection and instant spice was not what I was looking for from the author, and I never became invested in the romance.

So I had a great two weeks! Unfortunately, I’ve been sick for the past few days and there hasn’t been much (any) reading going on, so we’ll see how next week goes. There are several new books I’m looking forward to reading once they release on Tuesday, so hopefully I’ll be feeling better by then – fingers crossed!

If you read my Teaser Thursday post (found here), you know that there are some exciting books on the way soon!

If you missed any of this week’s reviews, I’ve got the blurb and rating for each below. There’s also a link to my new release list.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Cozy murder mystery/romance combo

Love, laughter, and a dead body…

Juniper Bean has big plans for her writing career. Swoony kisses, sigh-inducing happily ever afters—she’s going to write them all.

There’s just one problem: she can’t seem to stop killing off her main characters.

After accepting that a genre change is in order, Juniper sets out to do some research. What’s the best way to carry a dead body? How exactly does one pick a lock? Juniper is going to find out—with the unwilling help of her new roommate, Aiden.

But Juniper’s plans go haywire when she stumbles across an actual, real-life dead body—and before she knows it, she and Aiden are thrust into the middle of a murder mystery that seems suspiciously tied to Juniper’s past.

Who killed the girl in the woods? Can Juniper ever get the hang of mystery writing? And, perhaps the biggest question of all: Why the heck does Aiden look so good in a tweed jacket?

Read the review here

Amazon: https://amzn.to/40EFwQm

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Messy and unique

Nothing brings stressed people together like desserts.

Revenge is a dish best served scorching hot. That’s why professionally stressed and dessert loving Heaven Wilson creates a fake profile on the app her cheating boyfriend is using to find hookups.

But when she unexpectedly matches with Shane H, a man who seems as sweet as the baked treats he tempts her with, revenge becomes the least of her problems.

A more pressing issue? Not falling for the man she’s catfishing until she can ditch her unfaithful boyfriend. More pressing still? Shane turns out to be the professionally stressed, intimidating new boss she’s sent to work with.

And he has no idea she’s the girl whose messages leave him craving more every night.

With a boyfriend who could doom her to enormous financial debt, a hot and cold, irresistible boss complicating her work life, and the intricate web of lies she’s designed for herself, this is the perfect recipe for disaster.

When it turns out Heaven isn’t the only one keeping secrets, will the cookie finally crumble?

Desserts for Stressed People is a steamy, slow burn, laugh out loud story about love, friendship, and sweet treats. It features two stressed workaholics who, relying on each other’s strength, find the courage to chase the happily ever after they deserve.

Read the review here

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3FA91KW

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Sneak peek revew 🎧

A couple who broke up months ago pretend to still be together for their annual weeklong vacation with their best friends in this glittering and wise new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Emily Henry.

Harriet and Wyn have been the perfect couple since they met in college—they go together like salt and pepper, honey and tea, lobster and rolls. Except, now—for reasons they’re still not discussing—they don’t.

They broke up five months ago. And still haven’t told their best friends.

Which is how they find themselves sharing a bedroom at the Maine cottage that has been their friend group’s yearly getaway for the last decade. Their annual respite from the world, where for one vibrant, blissful week they leave behind their daily lives; have copious amounts of cheese, wine, and seafood; and soak up the salty coastal air with the people who understand them most.

Only this year, Harriet and Wyn are lying through their teeth while trying not to notice how desperately they still want each other. Because the cottage is for sale and this is the last week they’ll all have together in this place. They can’t stand to break their friends’ hearts, and so they’ll play their parts. Harriet will be the driven surgical resident who never starts a fight, and Wyn will be the laid-back charmer who never lets the cracks show. It’s a flawless plan (if you look at it from a great distance and through a pair of sunscreen-smeared sunglasses). After years of being in love, how hard can it be to fake it for one week…in front of those who know you best?

Releases on April 25th – preorder today!

Read the sneak peek audiobook review here

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3Ko3iKO

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Loved it

The Prodigal is a spicy, frenemies-to-lovers, forbidden romance full of delicious angst and heart-wrenching revelations by bestselling author Kristy Marie. 

Remington Potter was a sarcastic jerk with a body of an avenging angel. He screamed good times and bad decisions.
But that’s not what made us friends.
His saving me that one night did—even if he denied it.
Remington Potter was my antihero.
I owed him at least a friendship and a plastic chair.
But I made one mistake.
I didn’t knock.
I didn’t look away.
All I saw was him on the floor. 
And broken.
But that wasn’t the worst part.
I discovered Remington Potter wasn’t the mysterious savior I thought he was.
He was vengeful. 
And I was the final piece in his game.

The Prodigal is a full-length standalone that features crossover characters from the Hands of the Potters Series.

Read the review here

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3z8t2V9

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Sneak peek review 🎧

Ali Hazelwood’s “favorite writer” and fanfic sensation Julie Soto debuts with a deliciously spicy and funny novel about a wedding planner who must work with her grumpy ex to plan the celebrity event that could make or break their careers.

Ama Torres is an optimistic wedding planner who doesn’t believe in marriage. But weddings? They’re amazing. Elliot Bloom is a brooding florist who hates owning a flower shop…until a certain bright-eyed, donut-loving workaholic shows up at his door.

Once upon a time, they collaborated on events by day, and by night, Ama traced the intricate flower tattoos etched along his body. Then Ama shattered his heart and never spoke to Elliot again.  

Now they’re working on an event that could make or break both of their careers—except neither of them has gotten over what happened two years ago. Things are not helped by the two brides, who see the obvious chemistry between Ama and Elliot and are determined to set them up, not knowing their complicated history. But as the wedding takes on a life of its own, Ama and Elliot are about to discover that some things can survive a complete catastrophe . . . 

Smart and hilarious, Forget Me Not is about two people giving themselves—and love!—a second chance.

Releases on July 11th – preorder today!

Read the sneak peek audiobook review here

Amazon: https://amzn.to/40RVmHp

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Light and sexy

#4 Callum Duquette. Placekicker for the Boston Tomcats. Former underwear model. NICKNAME: Duke.

I thought the most annoying thing about being a single dad was that my friends were always trying to find me a date. Until a sassy British ray of sunshine bumps into me at a bookstore. One accidental butt grab, a viral photo, and a lot of misunderstandings later, I find myself in a fake relationship with a movie star.

Now I’ve got my friends off my back, but the cheeky Brit has complicated my life even more.

She calls me the Duke of Grumpville. 
I call her movies the end of civilization as we know it.

She calls my job “the wrong kind of football.” 
I call her the one thing on Earth that can make me lose focus and control.

It’s getting harder to pretend I still want this to end after my team’s game in London.

I thought we were only faking it.
But getting to know the real Millie Darden changed everything.

Read the review here

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3L8f5Og

⭐️⭐️⭐️ A miss for me 🎧

Trish Doller’s idyllic romance Off the Map proves sometimes a wrong turn can lead to the exact right destination.

On the road to love, you don’t need a GPS…

Carla Black’s life motto is “here for a good time, not for a long time.” She’s been traveling the world on her own in her vintage Jeep Wrangler for nearly a decade, stopping only long enough to replenish her adventure fund. She doesn’t do love and she doesn’t ever go home.

Eamon Sullivan is a modern-day cartographer who creates digital maps. His work helps people find their way, but he’s the one who’s lost his sense of direction. He’s unhappy at work, recently dumped, and his one big dream is stalled out—literally.

Fate throws them together when Carla arrives in Dublin for her best friend’s wedding and Eamon is tasked with picking her up from the airport. But what should be a simple drive across Ireland quickly becomes complicated with chemistry-filled detours, unexpected feelings, and a chance at love – if only they choose it.

Read the audiobook review here

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3z4tUtN

Check out this week’s new releases here.

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