Monday, December 17, 2018

Quick Pick book review: I Owe You One, by Sophie Kinsella

Quick Pick book review: I Owe You One, by Sophie Kinsella
  • Opening lines: The problem with me is, I can't let things go. They bug me. I see problems and I want to fix them, right here, right now. My nickname isn't Fixie for nothing.

    I mean, this can be a good thing. 
  • Reason I picked up the book: I'm a huge fan of Sophie Kinsella's books.
  • And what's this book about?
  • Fixie Farr has always lived by her father’s motto: “Family first.” And since her dad passed away, leaving his charming housewares store in the hands of his wife and children, Fixie spends all her time picking up the slack from her siblings instead of striking out on her own. The way Fixie sees it, if she doesn’t take care of her father’s legacy, who will?

    It’s simply not in Fixie’s nature to say no to people. So when a handsome stranger in a coffee shop asks her to watch his laptop for a moment, she not only agrees—she ends up saving it from certain disaster. To thank Fixie for her quick thinking, the computer’s owner, Sebastian, an investment manager, scribbles an IOU on a coffee sleeve and attaches his business card. Fixie laughs it off—she’d never actually claim an IOU from a stranger. Would she?

    But then Fixie’s childhood crush, Ryan, comes back into her life, and his lack of a profession pushes all of Fixie’s buttons. As always, she wants nothing for herself—but she’d love Seb to give Ryan a job. No sooner has Seb agreed than the tables are turned once more and a new series of IOUs between Seb and Fixie—from small favors to life-changing moments—ensues. Soon Fixie, Ms. Fixit for everyone else, is torn between her family and the life she really wants. Does she have the courage to take a stand? Will she finally grab the life, and love, she really wants?

  • Recommended for: Anyone who enjoys a light read or British fiction.
  • Favorite paragraph: I'm the one who took a loan from Mum ("our inheritance," Jake always calls it) and tried to set up a catering business and failed. And who still hasn't paid the money back.

    I'm not the black sheep of the family. That would be glamorous and interesting. I'm just the stupid dumb sheep who still has a stash of dark-green aprons under the bed, all embroidered with my logo:
    Farr's Food. (I sold everything else, but I couldn't get rid of those.) And whenever I'm around Jake, I feel even more stupid and dumb. Like, literally dumb. Because I barely even open my mouth, and when I do, I start to stammer.

    I have opinions; I have ideas. I really do.
    • Something to know: You can probably figure out the ending of this novel before it ends, but it was fun getting there. Most of Kinsella's characters kind of seem the same to me but they are always well-thought out and interesting.
    • What I would have changed: Nothing I can think of.
    • Overall rating: 4 stars out of 5.
    • Where can I find this book? The book will be online and in stores on February 5, 2019. Click here to purchase on Amazon.
    *Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from NetGalley for reviewing purposes. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.

    Monday, December 3, 2018

    Book Review and GIVEAWAY: The Royal Runaway, by Lindsay Emory {ends 12/10}

    I left the Queen's presence with a renewed sense of purpose. Gran had called me in to remind me what I had been raised to do, what I had always done. Princess Theodora of Drieden was polite, respectful, and compliant. She put the Crown and its priorities first. Even if it meant acquiescing to the blackmail of a dangerously cocky reporter.

    This book reminded me a bit of The Princess Diaries in that it focuses on the princess of a fictional monarchy—Drieden—and what happens to her after her fiancee doesn't show up for their wedding.

    About the book:
    Book Review and GIVEAWAY: The Royal Runaway, by Lindsay Emory
    For fans of The Princess Diaries and The Royal We comes a fun and daring novel about a modern-day princess who teams up with a spy to find out what happened to the fiancé who left her at the altar—and who just might get her own fairytale in the process.

    Princess Theodora Isabella Victoria of Drieden of the Royal House Laurent is so over this princess thing.

    After her fiancé jilted her on their wedding day, she’s finally back home after spending four months in exile—aka it’s back to press conferences, public appearances, and putting on a show for the Driedish nation as the perfect princess they expect her to be. But Thea’s sick of duty. After all, that’s what got her into this mess in the first place.

    So when she sneaks out of the palace and meets a sexy Scot named Nick in a local bar, she relishes the chance to be a normal woman for a change. But just as she thinks she’s found her Prince Charming for the night, he reveals his intentions are less than honorable: he’s the brother of her former fiancé, a British spy, and he’s not above blackmail. As Thea reluctantly joins forces with Nick to find out what happened the day her fiancé disappeared, together they discover a secret that could destroy a centuries-old monarchy and change life as they know it.

    Funny, fast-paced, and full of more twists and turns than the castle Thea lives in, The Royal Runaway is a fresh romantic comedy that will leave you cheering for the modern-day royal who chucks the rulebook aside to create her own happily-ever-after.

    Imagine if Megan had left Harry at the altar—that's what happens to Theodora, known as Thea to her close friends and family. After the event, her family sends her to an island they own, so that she can recover and have some peace. The book starts when she gets back from the island. 

    Thea likes to sneak out at night sometimes, and this night she "randomly"—so she thinks—meets a guy named Nick ... whom she later finds out is a spy who wants to find out what happened to her fiancee. There's another twist about Nick too but I won't spoil it here.

    If I'm being honest, I liked this book but didn't love it. Someone on Goodreads said something like "nothing is resolved in the end" which is kind of true, at least in certain aspects of the novel. I brought this book to my parents' house with me over my Thanksgiving break (I get a few days off from work) and finally finished it there, but it probably took me a week or two to get through it. 

    That being said, if you're a fan of The Princess Diaries and similar books, like I am, you will probably like it. It has similar aspects and both Thea and Nick are interesting characters. 

    3 stars out of 5.
    {click here to purchase}


    Two of my lucky readers will each win a copy of The Royal Runaway!

    Enter to win via the widget below. Giveaway will end on Monday, December 10th, at 11:59pm EST and winners will be notified via email, and have 24 hours to respond, or an alternate winner(s) will be chosen.

    U.S. residents only, please.

    Good luck!

    2 copies of The Royal Runaway, by Lindsay Emory

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