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Favourite reads: Apr 2021

5 May 2021

Books_purpleWelcome to our favourite reads for April. Each month some of ARRA’s members will tell you a little bit about one of the books they’ve recently read and loved.

These are not full reviews of the books, just honest opinions on why they enjoyed the book so much. Hopefully one of these will strike a chord with you.

So, we asked our members to tell us about some of their favourite reads for April …

Bombshells by Sarina Bowen (Brooklyn Bruisers #8) (contemporary romance)

Anton is a hockey defenceman; Sylvie is the new backup hockey goalie for the women’s team. Anton seems smitten from his first meeting, but he has been told to behave this season or else, so he ‘tries’ to shed the manwhore/prankster image and be Sylvie’s friend. The teams (Men’s & Women’s) do community service work and Sylvie and Anton both sign up to teach lifesaving to teenagers. I love the dedication they both have to these kids, it brings them even closer together.Very sweet epilogue and bonus epilogue. Now I have to go glom the other 7 books! [Linda, WA]

The Gentle Art of Fortune Hunting by KJ Charles (Regency m/m romance)

I absolutely loved this witty and moving male/male Regency romance. The plot is fun, the dialogue is clever, and the side characters are interesting and/or despicable. The romance is quite beautiful, with great character growth and believable conflicts, all dealt with sensitively and sensibly. I finished the book with pleasure at a fantastic read, but also with sorrow that I wouldn’t be having the company of these characters any longer. I hope for a sequel featuring the adventures of some of the secondary characters. [Deb, NSW]

Prince’s Gambit by CS Pacat (Captive Prince #2) (m/m fantasy romance)

CS Pacat writes an incredibly engrossing fantasy romance series with complex world-building, twisted political plots, tortured and tormented heroes. If you don’t mind reading a male/male romance, an enemies to lovers story, and you like a gritty, complex, fantasy romance then this series is for you. Book #1 shows a LOT of character growth between Damen and Laurent that develops into a slow-burn romance by Book #2. At times it’s hard to read certain scenes, as they are confronting, but Pacat’s writing is compelling. The romance is heart-wrenchingly raw. Highly recommended. [Kylie, NSW]

Starting Over at Acorn Cottage by Kate Forster (contemporary romance)

My favourite read this month was Starting Over at Acorn Cottage. Learning that her boyfriend and her best friend have been having an affair, Clara ditches her unsatisfying job and, sight unseen, buys a pretty country cottage in a charming English village. But the house is a mess, and she must engage the services of handyman hunk. The book also takes you into the lives of several villagers and explores some darker themes. There’s a lot of wisdom here, and the happy endings are well earned. [Anne, Vic]

A Stitch in Time by Kelley Armstrong (Thorne Manor #1) (time slip, mystery romance)

I loved the premise for this book—two people sharing a house in different time periods. The heroine, Bronwyn, has been able to cross into the past since she was a child, and she befriends William, a boy her age who lives in the Victorian era. As they grow older a romance blossoms, until Bronwyn has to leave due to a tragedy and her family convince her it was all her imagination. Twenty-three years later she returns to find out it was all true. There is plenty of angst caused by the situation and the separation, plus ghosts who want their murders solved. A gripping and moving story. [Debbie, ACT]

Sweetheart by Sarah Mayberry (contemporary romance)

This book is set in the Busy Bean coffee shop, in Sarina Bowen’s True North world. Haley’s just started her new job there, while Beck’s just started a coffee label/roastery with his brother. Their attraction is super hot! But Beck is Haley’s sister’s ex, and he doesn’t want to have anything to do with Haley in case he runs into her sister. Their break-up was dreadful, escalated by mental health problems. I was surprised such a short book could deal with such complex issues so well. But in the end, coffee + romance was the winner for me. [Malvina, NSW]

Pregnant with His Majesty’s Heir by Annie West (contemporary romance)

My most favourite trope in romance is Cinderella and Annie West has written one of the best Cinderella stories that I have read in such a long time. I loved this one so much, a true fairy tale journey, with wonderful and loveable hero and heroine and a fabulous true love match, it is sensual, moving and filled with emotion it is a page turner, this one left me smiling and I highly recommend it. [Helen, NSW]

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