#BookReview: How To Change a Life by Stacey Ballis

how to change a lifeAbout the Book

A dare between friends leads to startling revelations and simmering tensions in the latest novel from the author of Wedding Girl.

Eloise is happy with her life as a successful private chef. She has her clients, her corgi, and a recipe for the world’s most perfect chocolate cream pie. What more could she need? But when her long-lost trio of high school friends reunites, Eloise realizes how lonely she really is.

Eloise, Lynne, and Teresa revamp their senior-class assignment and dare one another to create a list of things to accomplish by the time they each turn forty in a few months. Control freak Lynne has to get a dog, Teresa has to spice up her marriage, and Eloise has to start dating again.

Enter Shawn, a hunky ex-athlete and the first man Eloise could see herself falling for. Suddenly forty doesn’t seem so lonely—until a chance encounter threatens the budding romance and reveals the true colors of her friends. Will the bucket listers make it to forty still speaking to one another? Or do some friendships come with an expiration date?

My Review

Stacey Ballis is on my list of favorite writers, and I always know I will enjoy her novels. How To Change a Life was the same absorbing read as her past books. I loved the idea of Eloise and her two friends making a little bucket list of sorts, items they want to complete before their fortieth birthdays. While Eloise is our main character, I still felt like I really got to know Teresa and Lynn, and enjoyed both of their stories. I’m such a fan of foodie fiction as well, and the combination of Eloise being a chef and the cute storyline of helping her client’s son compete for a food reality show, I was basically salivating my way through the book. Another must read from Stacey Ballis, and one for my favorite’s list.

5 stars

#BookReview: Little Gray Dress by Aimee Brown

little gray dressAbout the Book

Emi Harrison has avoided her ex-fiance, Jack Cabot, for nearly two years. Her twin brother Evan’s wedding is about to end that streak.

From bad bridesmaid’s dresses, a hyperactive sister-in-law, a mean girl with even meaner secrets, and too much to drink, nothing seems to go right for Emi, except when she’s wearing her little gray dress.

When she speed-walks into Liam Jaxon’s bar, things get more complicated. He’s gorgeous, southern, and has no past with Emi. He may be exactly what she needs to prove for the last time that she doesn’t need or want Jack!

Her favorite little gray dress has made an appearance at nearly every major event in Emi’s adult life. Will it make another grand appearance when she least expects it?

My Review

What a pure joy to read, from beginning to end. I would have never guessed this was Aimee Brown’s debut novel, from the strong writing, laugh out loud and cringe worthy moments, and a beyond satisfying ending. I enjoyed the structure of the story, switching seamlessly from present to past, and the secondary cast of characters added comedic value and plenty of touching moments. I particularly enjoyed Jack’s mother! This would be a great addition to any TBR list for chick lit and romantic comedy fans.

5 stars

#BookReview: Links by Lisa Becker

linksAbout the Book

In high school, Charlotte Windham went through a typical ugly duckling phase – glasses and all, while harboring a crush on Garrett Stephens, the school’s athletic heartthrob.

Fifteen years later, Charlotte and Garrett have a chance encounter at a Los Angeles restaurant. However, this time around, Charlotte has leveled the playing field. She’s a bestselling novelist and no longer “Glasses,” the humiliating nickname Garrett gave her.She’s a catch and, thanks to corrective eye surgery, it’s not just her eyes that see better…so does her heart!

Garrett hasn’t fared poorly either, transforming from teen heartbreaker to adult lothario and is now a successful professional golfer suffering from a possible career-ending injury.

Can Charlotte forgive Garrett for his past ways, and more recent Don Juan lifestyle? Will she even want to? And, can Garrett change his ways for a second chance with Charlotte, who may just be perfect for him?

My Review

I have been a big fan of Lisa Becker since reading her Click Trilogy, and was thrilled to discover she has yet another fabulous romantic comedy. The opening scene set the tone perfectly, and I had such a fun time getting lost in the worlds of Charlotte and Garrett. There is a lot of depth in this book besides just a romance, and Becker has a clever way with words that kept me turning the pages and becoming more and more invested in the characters. This was the perfect book to read when I needed a few spontaneous laughs, and I highly suggest you check out not only Links, but other books from Lisa Becker as well!

5 stars