In January, I started a new reading initiative for myself and my blog called “Netgalley Warriors.” The goal was to check in bimonthly but… this is my second update of the year.
My feedback ratio is in the gutter (in the 60s) after the last two years, either because I’ve gone on requesting binges, lost interest in a book, or because I read the requested book but never reviewed and now don’t remember enough to write feedback.
I had 20 books left on my Netgalley shelf, and that seemed like a perfectly rounded and reasonable number to rally around. I’ve been on Netgalley since 2015, which means there’s seven years of neglected books to get through! Literally a few of these are from seven years ago 💀💀💀
By this point in the year, I should be at least 7-8 books down, nearing the halfway mark.
⏬ Netgalley Warriors Update ⏬
Disclaimer: I received these books free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, but it doesn’t influence my opinion of the book nor the contents of my review in any way.
Dream Chaser + Spinner by Kristen Ashley – 2020, 2021 ⭐⭐⭐.💫
Kristen Ashley has been my favorite author since I first began reading adult romance. She may stick to format, but it’s a format I’ve always adored :) This Dream Team series has been quite fun, and I love the relationships between all the dancers at the club and the suspense element running along the background. But I have to admit, I’m not picking up her books as quickly as I used to. However, I have enjoyed both of these installments of the series.
Dream Chaser: A good story, and the hero has a nuanced past and present (which we don’t always get from KA heroes, admittedly), but the D/s scenes were a bit… light for experienced BDSM-readers. I know KA can do the scening justice, but readers beware that this one is just some bondage and role-play, which is still fun. I adored the house-flipping background, a secret passion of mine to watch on TV, for sure.
Dream Spinner: As a dancer, I love reading stories featuring other dancers. Hattie had a lot to work through in regards to her passion, which was fun to read. Hattie made Axl work for it (as he should), and when Axl finally breaks down Hattie’s barriers, it was a very beautiful relationship :)
Fake it Till You Bake It by Jamie Wesley – 2022 ⭐⭐
I strongly disliked this book, even though it had all the ingredients to be a wildly successful read: it’s a dislike-to-coworkers-to-lovers story, a forced proximity workplace romance, it takes place in a bakery, all the coworkers are friends, etc. But every single one of those tropes failed me. It took place in a cupcakery, of all things, but I didn’t get to enjoy the sweetness of the story in such a sweet setting, because it was not cute! The story wasn’t sexy, but felt more like a dislike-to-lust cycle between two employees who were uncomfortably horny in the workplace all the time. The amazing community that could have been built between the regulars consistently interacting with the employees and the coworkers who were all friends… failed. They were mere props, whose sole purpose was to move the relationship along. I wrote a very long review talking about these issues specifically, check it out!
Not Second Best by Christa Maurice – 2016 – DNF
I’ll admit… I didn’t get very far into this one before I DNF’d. This is the oldest ARC on my Netgalley shelf, so I thought that would be a great place to start. When I looked up the book, however, it didn’t interest me at all anymore. I’d never read a Christa Maurice, so I’m not sure what initially attracted me to this book. It surely wasn’t the cover. There are only 10 ratings and 4 reviews for this book on Goodreads, so I decided to definitely give it a go and see if I could hype it up a bit. But I was confused from page one, and that feeling didn’t abate the more I read. I’m letting bygones be bygones with this one and DNF’d. I don’t know if it’s because it was the fifth book in a series or the premise in general (probably both), but it’s a big no for me.
💛 Thanks for stopping by! 💛
Are there some ARCs you’re needing to catch up on? Have you read any of these? Let me know in the comments down below, I’d love to hear from you!