Monday, April 5, 2021

Life's Too Short by Abby Jimenez
The Friend Zone #3


Title: Life's Too Short
Series: The Friend Zone #3
Author: Abby Jimenez 
Publisher: Forever
Release Date: April 6, 2021

A brilliant and touching romantic comedy from the USA Today bestselling author of The Friend Zone and The Happy Ever After Playlist.

Vanessa lives life on her own terms — one day at a time, every day to its fullest. She isn’t willing to waste a moment or miss out on an experience when she has no idea whether she shares the same fatal genetic condition as her mother. Besides, she has way too much to do, traveling the globe and showing her millions of YouTube followers the joy in seizing every moment.

But after her half-sister suddenly leaves Vanessa in custody of her infant daughter, she is housebound, on mommy duty for the foreseeable future, and feeling totally out of her element.

The last person she expects to show up offering help is the unbelievably hot lawyer who lives next door, Adrian Copeland. After all, she barely knows him. But as they get closer, Vanessa realizes that her carefree ways and his need for a structured plan could never be compatible for the long term. Then again, she should know better than anyone that life’s too short to fear taking the biggest risk of all. . .

Well, Abby Jimenez, has done it again. I have fallen in love with this couple in the most charming way.

Life's Too Short is full of humor, sweet moments, and awareness. We only have one life to live and you have to make a decision on how you want to live it.

For Vanessa Price, the answer is simple. She wants to live in the now and in the fullest way possible. She wants to travel and do things that make her happy. She has lost loved ones and with her sister's death, she knew she had to make a change. 

Vanessa quits her job, cashes in her savings, began a Youtube channel, and went on living. Now, she has loyal followers in the millions who support her (for the most part). Then, her traveling ceases completely when her half-sister falls into drugs again and Vanessa must take care of her niece until she is clean again.

Adrian Copeland is a lawyer. He owns the building where Vanessa lives and he's her neighbor. When a child's constant crying interferes with his night, he will knock on Vanessa's door for the first time. Vanessa looks overwhelmed with a crying child in her arms, and Adrian will offer to help her while she cleans up. After this exchange, a friendship will blossom until they realize they want more from each other.  

Can they take the next step? 

I love how Abby Jimenez introduced these two characters. Everything that they did together that included the baby and the dog was wonderful. I laughed so much reading it but I also shed a few tears. 

Life is Too Short is wonderful in all the ways that matter and Abby Jimenez has become one of my must-read authors.

Cliffhanger: No

4/5 Fangs

A complimentary copy was provided by Forever via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune


Title: The House in the Cerulean Sea
Author: T.J. Klune
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: March 17, 2020

A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret.

Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.

When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he's given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.

But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.

An enchanting story, masterfully told, The House in the Cerulean Sea is about the profound experience of discovering an unlikely family in an unexpected place—and realizing that family is yours.

What a wonderful story this one is!!

The House in the Cerulean Sea is remarkable in all its greatness. From start to finish, there was nothing more that I wanted to do but to keep on listening. 

The characters all became dear to me in every way possible. They were all so charming in their own special way and I love how Linus was able to give them something while getting something back in return.

Linus Baker is a man that likes order. He abides by the Rules and Regulations and has the book to prove it. Linus has been in the same job for almost two decades but has never wanted a supervisor job. As part of the Department in Charge of Magical Youth, his job is to investigate the orphanages housing magical children and to make a recommendation as to keep them open or closed for good. 

When Linus gets a memo from Extreme Upper Management and he's asked to travel to investigate Marysas Island Orphanage, his shock is real. He has never heard of the place. It's even worse when his assignment takes him (and his cat Calliope) to the island and he meets the children living there and the man supervising them, Arthur Parnassus.

Linus has four weeks to learn more about the children and Arthur. As the days pass, to say the children were not what he was expecting would be a lie. Yes, they can be perceived as dangerous but exactly to who?

The House in the Cerulean Sea is a moving story with magnificent characters, wonderful humor, and love in all its manifestations. Quite priceless.

Simply put, it was cerulean magic.

Cliffhanger: No

5/5 Fangs

The One by John Marrs

Title: The One by John Marrs 
Author: The One by John Marrs 
Publisher: Random House Audio

How far would you go to find The One?

A simple DNA test is all it takes. Just a quick mouth swab and soon you’ll be matched with your perfect partner the one you are genetically made for.

That’s the promise made by Match Your DNA. A decade ago, the company announced that they had found the gene that pairs each of us with our soul mate. Since then, millions of people around the world have been matched. But the discovery has its downsides: test results have led to the breakup of countless relationships and upended the traditional ideas of dating, romance and love.

Now five very different people have received the notification that they’ve been “Matched.” They’re each about to meet their one true love. But “happily ever after” isn’t guaranteed for everyone. Because even soul mates have secrets. And some are more shocking than others…

A word-of-mouth hit in the United Kingdom, The One is a fascinating novel that shows how even the simplest discoveries can have complicated consequences.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

The One is a futuristic novel with enough interesting characters to keep you turning the pages, or in my case listening to every chapter. 

A discovery has been made. A gene has been found that can tell you who is your soulmate. When you meet the One, you know they are it for you. With Match Your DNA, now anyone can find that special someone who will make your life the happiest. 

Yet, not everyone is happy. Match Your DNA has broken marriages and relationships left and right. Then, of course, there are so many questions.

What if your match has decided not to run the test? 

What if the person you matched is not morally bound like you are? 

What if the test ruins your life?

The One will follow five characters' "love stories" after finding their match. 

How could anything go wrong?

John Mars does a wonderful job at making us think about the implications of something like this happening in our time. There is a scene in the book where two characters are debating the pros and cons of Match Your DNA. I thought it brought solid points to the table for both sides.

If you asked me to pick a favorite "match" couple, I will have to go with Nick's match undoubtedly. 

I read the next two books in this world and I'm glad I went back to listen to this one. I was happy to follow the characters through each of their personal ordeals and knowing what the future held was a plus.

Cliffhanger: No

4/5 Fangs