The Third Best Thing by Maya Hughes

Dear Letter Girl, I need to see you. When can we meet?
Her response never came. My secret pen pal with a dirty mind has ghosted me. I've roped Jules, my sweet as pie next door neighbor, to help me track her down.

There's only one problem--I'm falling for her. The tortoise shell glasses, out of this world curves and delicious treats are making the search for The Letter Girl even harder.

My notes were supposed to be a one time thing. A little too much wine and naughty thoughts on a winter's night. I never thought Berk would write back. I wanted to tell him it was me, but the fear of rejection kept my lips sealed.

Now he’s enlisted my help to track down The Letter Girl and our search has him hot on my, ahem, her trail.

She's the girl next door.

He's my secret pen pal.

Truth is on a collision course with their hearts and it’s only a matter of time before one of them gets wrecked...

Title: The Third Best Thing
Author: Maya Hughes
Series: Fulton U Book 3
Pages: 369
Genre(s): Contemporary, US, New Adult
Hot Buttons: death of parent(s), parent emotional abuse <-- highlight to reveal (may contain spoilers)


Maya Hughes has become one of my go-to writers when I’m looking for some steamy romance filled with heat and heart. It’s a new-adult romance, but if you feel that’s not your thing then I still urge you to give this book a go. I didn’t consider myself a fan before Ms Hughes showed me the light!

This is the third book in the Fulton U series, after The Perfect First (Reece and Seph) and The Second We Met (Nix and Elle). While the characters from these earlier novels do appear in this one - and despite Jules and Berk first being introduced in the earlier books - this book does stand completely alone and you don’t need to have read any of the others to understand and enjoy this one.

And you’ll more than enjoy this book. It’s got a sweetness to it that hasn’t really been in Maya’s other books. Along with the deep emotions and sexy sex, of course!

Both Berk and Jules have a vulnerability based on their past life experiences, the way they’ve been treated, and how they feel about themselves. Because of this, you almost immediately develop deep connections with our couple - both individually and as part of a couple. Despite this, the book still manages to keep it light. I’ll admit that there were times that I had a wee blue to myself but there really is minimal angst or drama and all the situations feel real.

But god-damn - I wish all those cupcakes, cookies and treats were real. Major drooling going on over here.

Jules is a character I really think all women can relate to. She’s self-conscious about herself - mainly how she looks or how she thinks other people think she looks. It’s never self-pitying but you can feel her pain and sadness. The fact that Berk is so smitten with her certainly helps her to feel better about herself - but she also builds herself up over the course of the book. A great message for anyone and everyone. I admit to feeling a wee bit of fire in my belly after reading this book. Why do I actually care what random people think of me? What if I didn’t?

Anyway… this is the kind of book I can and did get lost in. The story is absorbing, interesting and, as I said before, the characters are people that I can relate to, cheer for and admire. Those pages practically turn themselves and that’s testament to the engaging writing of Ms Hughes. She’s fast becoming one of my favourite authors and I can’t bear that in this book alone she teased two, if not three couples that (fingers crossed) will get their own books in the future.

Another exceptional book from Maya Hughes and very worthy of 5 stars. She really needs to write more and write faster!!




Maya Hughes can often be found sneaking in another chapter while hiding in the bathroom from her kids! :-) I’m a romance writer who loves taking inspiration from everyday life, namely my husband and biggest fan. Inspiration also strikes when I hear a song, meet someone new or daydream while at soccer practice.

I’m the mom of three little ones, the wife to an amazing husband and also work full time. Some of my favorite things are cinnamon rolls, white wine, laughing until I can’t breathe and traveling with my family.






COVER REVEAL: Dear Ava by Ilsa Madden-Mills

The rich and popular Sharks rule at prestigious, ivy-covered Camden Prep. Once upon a time, I wanted to be part of their world—until one of them destroyed me.

The last thing I expected was an anonymous love letter from one of them.

Please. I hate every one of those rich jerks for what they did to me. The question is, which Shark is my secret admirer: Knox, the scarred quarterback and their leader, Dane, his twin brother, or Chance, the ex who dumped me...

Dear Ava,

Your eyes are the color of the Caribbean Sea.

That’s stupid.

What I really mean is, you look at me and I feel something REAL.

It’s been ten months since you were here, but I can’t forget you.

I’ve missed seeing you walk down the hall.

I’ve missed you cheering at my football games.

I’ve missed the smell of your hair.

The truth is, I wanted you back then—but you had him.

And then everything fell apart that night.

Don’t hate me because I’m a Shark.

I just want to make you mine.


Title: Dear Ava
Author: Ilsa Madden-Mills
Series: Standalone
Pages: 305
Genre(s): Contemporary, US, New Adult, Enemies-to-lovers, High School romance
Hot Buttons: tbc

Release Date: 2nd February, 2020




Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and USA Today best-selling author Ilsa Madden-Mills is best known for her contemporary romances ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy.

Seven of her ten novels have placed in the Amazon US Store Top Six Best-seller List: Dirty English hit #1; Fake Fiancée and I Dare You hit #2; I Bet You, Filthy English, and Very Bad Things all placed #6 in the Amazon US Store. The Last Guy, her collaboration with Tia Louise, hit #4.

A former high school English teacher, she adores all things Pride and Prejudice, and of course, Mr. Darcy is her ultimate hero.

She's addicted to frothy coffee beverages, cheesy magnets, and any book featuring unicorns and sword-wielding females. Feel free to stalk her online.





BLOG TOUR: Twice as Sexy by Carly Phillips

He’s the bad boy her mother warned her about.

The guy who makes her crave all the naughty things a good girl shouldn’t want.

Tanner Grayson is a man outrunning the demons of his past and has the rap sheet to prove it. The only thing keeping old anger in check and him on the straight and narrow are the men he calls brothers and the club he calls home. He has no business taking the sexy woman doing shots in his club upstairs to his bed.

They never should have crossed paths. But when Assistant District Attorney Scarlett Davis lays eyes on the hot as sin club owner, she decides he’s the birthday present she wants to unwrap at the end of the evening.

He tells himself it’s one night. She convinces herself she deserves a short break from her latest case. But one night isn’t enough and soon these two opposites are in deeper than they ever planned.

When Scarlett’s case collides with Tanner’s past, she sees the dangerous man he’s hidden beneath the cool veneer he presents to the world. Can she accept him for who he is? Or will she run from the bad boy who makes her feel so good?

Title: Twice as Sexy (previously known as Sexy Hers)
Author: Carly Phillips
Series: Sexy Series (Book 2) / Dare To Love Standalone
Pages: 232
Genre(s): Contemporary, US
Hot Buttons: /


Twice as Sexy (previously known as Sexy Hers), is the second book in Carly Phillips’ Sexy Series. This is a spin-off series from the Dare series (and other Dare spin-offs) but it stands completely alone from those series, and the first book in this series, Sexy Dare.

There’s a bit of insta-lust going on in this book as our couple, Tanner and Scarlett have an ‘eyes meet and it’s on’ moment. I do like to read about strong, confident women, and I was all for Scarlett approaching Tanner, introducing herself and inviting him to her bed. However, I can’t say that I felt a connection with her as I’m definitely not that bold and confident when I see a hot man! Unfortunately.

I did like Scarlett. Especially the way that she was both strong and vulnerable. And she was honest with her feelings, and with Tanner, from the get-go. At times I wanted her to not be worried about Tanner, or not be wary of him and his past, but that’s life, I suppose, and it’s better to read about real relationships, even if I always want everything to go perfectly!

Tanner was the perfect hero. He’s described as a bad-boy - a little rougher than his two business partners (and the subject of the other books in the series) - so I had a preconceived notion in my head about what he was like. Namely a little bit emotionally unavailable, a little bit standoffish etc etc. So it was a delight to not get such a cookie cutter hero, but one that knows what he wants and goes after it, but realises that what he wants with Scarlett is something different to what he’s had in the past. And even better, he wants to get to know Scarlett, what makes her tick, and does what she needs even if he doesn’t feel it gets him where he wants to go.

Even with the insta-lust and immediate sexual relationship, we do get a nice progression of feelings and emotions through to the very satisfying HEA. Scarlett and Tanner are a great couple and are perfect for each other - which makes a satisfying couple of hours as a reader.

When you pick up a Carly Phillips novel you know you’ll be getting great writing, witty banter, sexy times and satisfying relationships - both friends and romance. Whether you’re a fan of her series’ or a first time reader, you won’t fail to be charmed by this book. 4 stars.







Carly Phillips gives her readers Alphalicious heroes to swoon for and romance to set your heart on fire, and she loves everything about writing romance. She married her college sweetheart and lives in Purchase, NY along with her three crazy dogs: two wheaten terriers and a mutant Havanese, who are featured on her Facebook and Instagram. She has raised two incredible daughters who put up with having a mom as a romance author. Carly is the author of over fifty romances, and is a NY Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today Bestseller. She loves social media and interacting with her readers. Want to keep up with Carly? Sign up for her newsletter and receive TWO FREE books at





BLOG TOUR: The Princess Plan by Julia London

Passion. Intrigue. Love.

London’s high society loves nothing more than a scandal. And when the personal secretary of the visiting Prince Sebastian of Alucia is found murdered, it’s all anyone can talk about, including Eliza Tricklebank. Her unapologetic gossip gazette has benefited from an anonymous tip off about the crime, forcing Sebastian to ask for her help in his quest to find his friend’s killer.

With a trade deal on the line and mounting pressure to secure a noble bride, there’s nothing more dangerous than a prince socialising with a commoner. Sebastian finds Eliza’s contrary manner as frustrating as it is seductive, but they’ll have to work together if they’re going to catch the culprit. And soon, as temptation becomes harder to ignore, it’s the prince who’ll have to decide what comes first—his country or his heart.

Title: The Princess Plan
Author: Julia London
Series: Royal Wedding Series
Pages: 400
Genre(s): Historical, Victorian, England, Royalty
Hot Buttons: murder  <-- highlight to reveal (may contain spoilers)


🍹 Scroll down for an exclusive recipe for Eliza's Royal Rum Punch! 🍹


There are a couple of things that would normally make me pass on this book: I don’t normally do Victoran set novels (this takes places in 1845) and it’s inspired by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s romance - which is so embarrassingly cringeworthy I just can’t. And while I’ve read a couple of Julia London’s stories before, I honestly can’t remember them, which says it all, apparently.

Thank goodness I ignored my own misgivings as this book was just fantastic!

The first thing I became aware of is how much I loved Eliza. I can imagine it takes great skill to write a quirky, opinionated and singular character such as Eliza and still make her funny and relatable rather than just downright annoying. I adored her and her bluntness. She’s who I think I would be if I was placed in an environment that was shiny and new - overwhelmed and genuinely enthusiastic about every little thing.

Likewise, Crown Prince Sebastian tugged at my heartstrings something rotten. Strong, arrogant and entitled, we learn that he’s actually a lonely man who yearns for someone to see him. Even when he was being a royal douche, I loved him and wanted to give him a big ol’ cuddle.

And I loved Eliza and Sebastian together. They start off on the wrong foot. Well, they start off on the right foot but Sebastian manages to forget that encounter. I think I was annoyed as Eliza by that fact! But they slowly move to friends, and then something more. It was a delight to read, and quite emotional as the pair began to realise that circumstances meant they could never be together. I admit it, I shed a wee tear. (Okay so I was sobbing - sue me!)

We also have a little bit of a murder mystery going on in the background of the book and love story. There are a few red herrings thrown our way, but it’s not really that difficult to figure out the culprit - but that’s really not the point. The murder is obviously just the catalyst to bring Eliza and Sebastian together; and it’s definitely more about the small intrigues and amusing situations that our couple find themselves in while attempting to solve the mystery. I enjoyed that element of the book even if it petered out towards the end as the conclusion to our romance came to the fore.

I’m always nitpicky about Americanisms in stories set in Britain. While this one does so well with most things - we do not call them sidewalks. We call them pavements. Always pavements. Otherwise, I was impressed by the scene setting and language as a whole.

This book pulled me in from the start and I loved every last second of reading it. I see that this is the first in a new series and I’m hoping we’ll get stories for Hollis, Caro and even Beck and Prince Leopold. And of course, I would love to see how Eliza and Sebastian are getting on back in Alucia - hopefully with 12 little ones running around them!

If you’re looking for a fun and interesting romance about a girl who doesn’t believe she’ll ever get her happily ever after, and a prince who simply wants to be seen as a man, then you’ll fall in love with this story as much as I did. 5 massive stars from me.


Buy this book:

* I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. *


Eliza's Royal Rum Punch

Eliza sniffed at the punch. Then sipped it. Then imprudently downed it, draining the glass, because the punch was delicious. How tingly it made her feel!

Moments later, the footman suddenly appeared again and extended his nearly empty tray for her glass.

"Thank you," Eliza said sheepishly. "That was very good." She took one of the last glasses on his tray.

"Aye, madam. It's been amply mixed with rum."


One part light rum
One part dark rum
One part Triple Sec
Cointreau or apricot brandy
A dash of Grenadine
A teaspoon of lime juice
Three parts of freshly squeezed, chilled orange juice
Three parts of freshly squeezed, chilled pineapple juice
Crushed ice
Slice of pineapple and a cherry for garnish


Half-fill a cocktail shaker with ice.

Now add the white and dark rum, the Triple Sec, Cointreua and Grenadine - in that order.

Follow with the fruit juices.

Shake the mixture well, until the outside of the shaker starts to feel cold, then strain over the crushed ice into glasses.

Garnish and serve.

For that extra kick (and hey, it worked out for Eliza!) top with a dash of 151-proof rum!



The Royal Wedding Series:



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