Review: Of Sand and Stone by Lauren Smith

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Lauren Smith
  • Date ‏ : ‎ June 27, 2020
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 194 pages
  • Author: Lauren Smith

She was destined to save his heart of stone…Bookish museum curator Rebecca Clark has given up on dating. Real life men aren’t nearly as perfect as the men in the paintings and statues she sees every day at her job. But one night she whispers a prayer to the universe to send her the perfect man. She had no idea a goddess is listening…Devon Blake was Regency London’s most wicked lover but when he sleeps with the wrong woman and leaves her unsatisfied, he finds himself cursed by none other than the Goddess of love herself. After living two centuries trapped as a marble statue, Aphrodite gives Devon one chance to redeem himself or he’ll face an eternity of made of stone. He must prove he can satisfy a woman’s every desire without satisfying his own.When Rebecca discovers a naked man in her art gallery instead of a priceless statue at midnight she has no idea he’s the answer to her prayers. Aphrodite has sent Devon to be Rebecca’s perfect man. Can Devon earn Rebecca’s love and trust by proving his selflessness or will it be too late?

Review:
I ended up reading Of Sand and Stone by Lauren Smith in a day. It was such a cute, fast paced story to read. I wanted something different to read. I have read other time travel books but this one was so cute and sweet. I really enjoyed it. The summary says it all about this book. I love the connection between the two characters. I love how Devon changes a bit and learns of the new world. Rebecca also learns a few things. I did yell at Aphrodite in the book for a moment of what she did. I just had to share that. This is such a nice little gem to read. I’m glad I did! Does Rebecca and Devon get their happy ever after? You’ll have to read to find out.

Psst, isn’t the cover so pretty?

Playing the Pauses by Michelle Hazen – Review


Publisher ‏ : ‎ 
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Date: February 27, 2018
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 374 pages
Author: Michelle Hazen

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SUMMARY:

Kate is a globe-trotting career woman who can’t be tied down.
Danny is a Dominant musician and tattoo artist who needs her help to explore his true kinks.

Kate just got her big break, running an international tour for a rising band. Her job is everything to her…at least until she meets the band’s enigmatic bass player.

After they collide in one unforgettably erotic night on a hotel balcony, he comes to her with a proposition. As a former BDSM club performer, Danny’s spent so long fulfilling other people’s fantasies that now he wants to reclaim his own—and he says she’s the only one who can help.

Getting caught in bed with her boss could cost her career, and yet there’s something about Danny’s quiet intensity that she can’t resist. He steals her heart, hard. But the end of the tour is approaching, and their jobs are headed two different directions.

To be together one of them will have to stop touring, but the only thing they crave as much as each other is music.

Warning the book does cover a bit of BDSM. So if that is not your thing, then don’t read this book. If you are curious of my review check it out. I am not going to go into detail.

REVIEW:
So I saw this book going to the book sale and I decided to save it. I’m glad I did. The cover that I have is completely different than what I posted.

Musician rocker romance! I’m sure you can imagine what it would all be about.

The summary is spot on and I really liked this story. I like how there were two characters who are trying to find themselves. They connect, they talk, they clicked and of course they hook up. But what I liked the most about the characters is the communication. They did communicate but when it got tough they fought for a tiny bit. Realization hit them both of what they felt and how hard it was to express that. What fears they had to overcome?

Exploration was involved. The book does talk a tiny bit of BDSM  but it’s not too in depth and not too scary in my opinion. Kate and Johnny help each other out in many ways and yet the BDSM side to me seemed about control. It’s a totally different world. As I said before if it’s not your thing then don’t read the book.

As I said before I liked the connection between the Danny and Kate.

Some things that stayed with me are: The rocker bus moments, the stage going wild with fans, the steamy moments between Danny and Kate, friendships, moments of Danny and Kate dealing with their families and descriptions of the tattoos.

Kate had to handle many different aspects of that world. I can only imagine stress from it all. She had a flair dealing with it. Kate was a pretty unique character in this story.

Danny…what can I say…something about bad boy, rocker star with gorgeous tattoos who can play the bass guitar really well?

Then there’s Jera and Jax who are the other bandmates who had their own things that were dealing with but the story mostly focused on Danny and Kate. Danny’s friendship to Jera and Jax was very cool. Danny was almost like a big brother to them. I liked how Kate slowly became friends with Jera and Jax. Very cool vibe.

(I have not read the other stories of Jera or Jax yet.)

The book took me about two days to read and I could not put it down but I had to because I had to do adult things. I liked the story. It was a nice escape from reality and being thrown into a world of musicians and hot romance, if you get my meaning.

I spy new Cute Romance Fiction

Which will you pick up to read today from the land of cute romance?

Nothing like a rocky start between enemy coworkers stuck together on location to prove that love isn’t just a ploy for ratings—it’s a force of nature.

Alia Dunn has finally gotten her big break. After years of working her way up at TV’s top outdoor travel channel, she gets the green light from network executives to bring her dream project to life: produce a series about Utah’s national parks. It’s a touching tribute to her late apong, who sparked Alia’s passion for travel and the outdoors as a kid.

Alia is thrilled—until she meets her newest crew member, Drew Irons. The same Drew she had the most amazing first date with two weeks ago—who then ghosted her. The same Drew who has the most deliciously thick forearms and who loves second-guessing her every move on set in front of the entire crew. It’s not long before the tension between them turns hotter than the Utah desert in the dead of summer, and their steamy encounters lead to major feelings.

But when the series host goes rogue one too many times, jeopardizing the entire shoot, Alia realizes that she’ll need to organize one hell of a coup to save her show—and she’ll need Drew’s help to do it. It’s the riskiest move she’s ever made. If she pulls it off, she’ll end up with a hit series and her dream guy . . . but if it all goes wrong, she could lose both.

Avery Spark is living her best life. Between her friends, her sisters, and Spark House, the event hotel her family owns, she doesn’t have much time for anything else, especially relationships. She’d rather hang out with her best friend and roommate, Declan McCormick, than deal with the dating scene. But everything changes when she is in a car accident and needs someone to care for her as she heals.

Declan avoids relationships, giving him a playboy reputation that he lives up to when he puts a one-night stand ahead of a promise he made to Avery. While he may not have been the one driving the car, he feels responsible for Avery’s injuries and is determined to make it up to her by stepping into the role of caretaker.

Little did they know that the more time they spend in compromising positions, the attraction they’ve been refusing to acknowledge becomes impossible to ignore. When they finally give in to the spark between them, neither is prepared for the consequences. Their love is fragile and all it will take is a blow from the past to shatter it all.

On the verge of realizing her dream of being a doctor, Preeti Patel should be ecstatic. But between the stress of her residency, trying to find a job, and managing her traditional, no-boundaries family, Preeti’s anxiety is through the roof. Relationships and love aren’t even an option. Fortunately, Preeti’s finally found a new place to stay . . . only to discover that her new roommate is her ex.

Preeti never quite got over Daniel Thompson. Super-hot, plenty of swagger, amazing cook—the guy is practically perfect. And if it weren’t for their families, there might have been a happily ever after. But it’s hard to keep her sanity and libido in check when the man of her dreams is sleeping mere feet away. Can Preeti and Daniel find a way to stand up and fight for each other one last time . . . before they lose their second chance?

Every Day in December Review

I have finally gotten around to review this gem!!

I received an e-Arc from the publisher and Netgalley for an honest review!

Author: Kitty Wilson
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SUMMARY
Belle Wilde loves December. Yes, she’s just lost her job and Christmas is not a good time to find yourself ‘financially challenged’. And yes, her parents are still going on about the fact that she really should have it all together by now. But Belle believes that in December, magic can happen.

Rory Walters hates December. Whilst it looks like his life is together, he’s still reeling from a winter’s night five years ago when his life changed forever. Now back at home, he’s certain that this will be yet another Christmas to endure rather than enjoy.

But as midnight on December 31st draws closer, Belle and Rory’s time together is coming to an end. With a little help from a Christmas miracle could Belle find the one thing she really wants underneath the mistletoe?

MY REVIEW:

This book was soooo cute and I was smiling ear to ear at the interaction of Rory and Belle. (I love their names!). The two had such playful banter! They even had me giggling a bit here and there! While reading this story, it gave me a positive and warm feeling. I even had a cup of hot coco while reading.

Rory and Belle reconnect again as they do, they learn and teach each other many things. You can see their relationship grow but they do struggle with their feelings at times. They are good for each other. Rory brings out a sturdy side to Belle and Belle gives Rory a side of having fun and being in the moment! They are friends but it grows to them falling in love. It was a slow burn too. I always looked forward to seeing their text messages to each other.

I have to point out that I loved this line mentioned in the story: “I’m your Christmas elf” – Belle says.

It’s a slow, warm hearted holiday story! I am glad I took the time to read this wonderful gem. If you are looking for a holiday, cute, fast, slow burn, friends reconnecting to lovers, then this book is for you!

Psst…even Shakespeare is mentioned in this book. Belle hearts Shakespeare!

I spy Cute Romance Fiction

These covers are soooooo cute.

Violet March and Sam Nash are as different as night and day and have been enemies ever since Violet accused Sam of dognapping her beloved Dalmatian. Sam knows that would never happen—his well-trained fire safety demonstration dog never steps out of line, whereas Violet’s problematic pooch has never met a command she didn’t ignore completely, much like her bubbly owner. So when Sprinkles and Cinder accidentally switch places during the annual police vs. fire department softball tournament, Violet is thrilled by her dog’s sudden perfect behavior, while stubborn-yet-charming Sam is horrified to find that his dog no longer listens.

But when they eventually realize and switch the dogs back, Sam and Violet are shocked to find that not everything is as simple as it seems. And a little puppy love might be just the thing they’ve been missing.

Going toe-to-toe with a brooding Scotsman is rather bold for a respectable suffragist, but when he happens to be one’s unexpected husband, what else is an unwilling bride to do?

London banking heiress Hattie Greenfield wanted just three things in life:

1. Acclaim as an artist.
2. A noble cause.
3. Marriage to a young lord who puts the gentle in gentleman.

Why then does this Oxford scholar find herself at the altar with the darkly attractive financier Lucian Blackstone, whose murky past and ruthless business practices strike fear in the hearts of Britain’s peerage? Trust Hattie to take an invigorating little adventure too far. Now she’s stuck with a churlish Scot who just might be the end of her ambitions….

When the daughter of his business rival all but falls into his lap, Lucian sees opportunity. As a self-made man, he has vast wealth but holds little power, and Hattie might be the key to finally setting long-harbored political plans in motion. Driven by an old desire for revenge, he has no room for his new wife’s apprehensions or romantic notions, bewitching as he finds her.

But a sudden journey to Scotland paints everything in a different light. Hattie slowly sees the real Lucian and realizes she could win everything–as long as she is prepared to lose her heart.

Dev Deshpande has always believed in fairy tales. So it’s no wonder then that he’s spent his career crafting them on the long-running reality dating show Ever After. As the most successful producer in the franchise’s history, Dev always scripts the perfect love story for his contestants, even as his own love life crashes and burns. But then the show casts disgraced tech wunderkind Charlie Winshaw as its star.

Charlie is far from the romantic Prince Charming Ever After expects. He doesn’t believe in true love, and only agreed to the show as a last-ditch effort to rehabilitate his image. In front of the cameras, he’s a stiff, anxious mess with no idea how to date twenty women on national television. Behind the scenes, he’s cold, awkward, and emotionally closed-off.

As Dev fights to get Charlie to connect with the contestants on a whirlwind, worldwide tour, they begin to open up to each other, and Charlie realizes he has better chemistry with Dev than with any of his female co-stars. But even reality TV has a script, and in order to find to happily ever after, they’ll have to reconsider whose love story gets told.

It’s Raining Men

I saw this book and just had to share it….

Cover is so vibrant and fun!

The title caught my eye as well.

What could probably go wrong with this story?

Don’t drink and text.

Even on the cusp of forty, I had to learn that the hard way. After discovering my best friend, who I was supposed to grow old and single with, got engaged, I drowned my loneliness in one too many Old Fashioneds and woke up with thirty-nine responses from every available man in my phone. Yup, I even texted my plumber…and he turned me down.

Apparently, my liquor-infused text said that while I don’t need a man, maybe I’d be down for a constant sidekick for movies, plus-one invites, and dinner on the table after my grueling shifts as a concierge doctor―till death do us part…and was anyone in?

Through the absolute mortification of thirty-seven rejections, shockingly, I realize two men have said yes. Behind Bachelor Door #1 is Rob, my old high school crush: the comfortable, dependable boy-next-door. Behind Bachelor Door #2 is Darius, the exciting, flashy news reporter about to hit it big. Does this mean I’ll have to get out of my yoga pants and actually go on dates now?

Dax, the local bartender who got me into this disaster in the first place―remember the Old Fashioneds?―can’t believe I’ve given up on finding true love. What does a tattooed, broody twentysomething know about carving out a future for yourself, anyway?

Too bad the further into this hot mess I get, the less I know about who I am. And I’m going to have to figure out exactly what I need if I ever want to find a true happily ever after.

Fiction – let’s check it out

I spy some lovely fiction books to read.

Which one will you add to your to read pile?

Cindy loves shoes. A well-placed bow or a chic stacked heel is her form of self-expression. As a fashion-obsessed plus-size woman, she can never find designer clothes that work on her body, but a special pair of shoes always fits just right.  

With a shiny new design degree but no job in sight, Cindy moves back in with her stepmother, Erica Tremaine, the executive producer of the world’s biggest dating reality show. When a contestant on Before Midnight bows out at the last minute, Cindy is thrust into the spotlight. Showcasing her killer shoe collection on network TV seems like a great way to jump-start her career. And, while she’s at it, why not go on a few lavish dates with an eligible suitor?

But being the first and only fat contestant on Before Midnight turns her into a viral sensation—and a body-positivity icon—overnight. Even harder to believe? She can actually see herself falling for this Prince Charming. To make it to the end, despite the fans, the haters, and a house full of fellow contestants she’s not sure she can trust, Cindy will have to take a leap of faith and hope her heels— and her heart—don’t break in the process.

Meet Asha Ray.

Brilliant coder and possessor of a Pi tattoo, Asha is poised to revolutionize artificial intelligence when she is reunited with her high school crush, Cyrus Jones.

Cyrus inspires Asha to write a new algorithm. Before she knows it, she’s abandoned her PhD program, they’ve exchanged vows, and gone to work at an exclusive tech incubator called Utopia.

The platform creates a sensation, with millions of users seeking personalized rituals every day. Will Cyrus and Asha’s marriage survive the pressures of sudden fame, or will she become overshadowed by the man everyone is calling the new messiah?

It’s 1927 when Alec and June meet as children in a tranquil English village. Alec, an orphan, anchors himself in the night sky and longs for adventures. June memorizes maps and railway timetables, imagining a future bright with possibilities. 
 
As the years pass, their loves feels inevitable, but soon the Second World War separates them. Alec enlists as a Royal Air Force pilot flying daredevil fighter sorties at night; June finds her calling as a codebreaker at Bletchley Park, covert work that will mean keeping her contribution to the war effort a secret from Alec forever. Each is following a dream—but those dreams force them apart for years at a time.
 
Their postwar reunion is bittersweet: Alec, shot down and imprisoned in a series of POW camps, grapples with his injuries and the loss of his RAF career. June, on the other hand, has found her vocation and struggles to follow the expected path to domesticity, as much as she loves Alec. But Alec wants nothing more than to make a life and a family together.
 
With the war behind them, their scars—both visible and unseen—make them strangers to each other. Now each must decide how much to reveal to the other, which dreams can be sacrificed, and which secrets are too big to bear alone.

Ben Stephens has never bothered with serious relationships. He has plenty of casual dates to keep him busy, family drama he’s trying to ignore and his advertising job to focus on. When Ben lands a huge ad campaign featuring movie star, Anna Gardiner, however, it’s hard to keep it purely professional. Anna is not just gorgeous and sexy, she’s also down to earth and considerate, and he can’t help flirting a little…

Anna Gardiner is on a mission: to make herself a household name, and this ad campaign will be a great distraction while she waits to hear if she’s booked her next movie. However, she didn’t expect Ben Stephens to be her biggest distraction. She knows mixing business with pleasure never works out, but why not indulge in a harmless flirtation? 

But their light-hearted banter takes a turn for the serious when Ben helps Anna in a family emergency, and they reveal truths about themselves to each other, truths they’ve barely shared with those closest to them. 

When the opportunity comes to turn their real-life fling into something more for the Hollywood spotlight, will Ben be content to play the background role in Anna’s life and leave when the cameras stop rolling? Or could he be the leading man she needs to craft their own Hollywood ending?

Regina Castro, Adelaide Wilson-Chang, and Sophie Walden usedto be best friends. As Army wives at Fort East, they bonded during their book club and soon became inseparable. But when an unimaginable betrayal happened amongst the group, the friendship abruptly ended, and they haven’t spoken since.

That’s why, eight years later, Regina and Sophie are shocked when they get a call for help from Adelaide. Adelaide’s husband is stationed abroad, and without any friends or family near her new home of Alexandria, Virginia, she has no one to help take care of her young daughter when she has to undergo emergency surgery. For the sake of an innocent child, Regina and Sophie reluctantly put their differences aside to help an old friend.

Gabi Bloom doesn’t believe in signs. She believes in photographic evidence, the view through her camera lens, and the snap of the shutter. It’s why she traveled to Europe—to satisfy her wanderlust and to kick off her photography career. But in Ireland, all of that changed when Gabi gazed into the impossibly blue eyes of an American bartender. She wasn’t prepared for their intense and immediate attraction, or the fact that she’d be bringing Ethan home with her . . . as her fiancé.

Gabi’s upcoming marriage is the cherry on top of her mother’s current predicament. Stumbling toward forty, Alissa is a pastry chef who raised her daughter single-handedly while Gabi’s father traveled the globe. Now her baby girl is getting married after a whirlwind romance and Alissa—well, Alissa is pregnant. Again. And not only is her ex the father, he wants her back. For good. Until she can figure out that part of the puzzle, Alissa is hiding her big little secret even as she helps Gabi plan a happily-ever-after wedding. But somewhere between disaster and hope, life might just bloom in a way that is breathtakingly unexpected . . .

1917, Petrograd. Fleeing the murderous flames of the Russian Revolution, Princess Svetlana Dalsky hopes to find safety in Paris with her mother and sister. But the city is buckling under the weight of the Great War, and the Bolsheviks will not rest until they have erased every Russian aristocrat from memory. Svetlana and her family are forced into hiding in Paris’s underbelly, with little to their name but the jewels they sewed into their corsets before their terrifying escape.

Born the second son of a Scottish duke, the only title Wynn MacCallan cares for is that of surgeon. Putting his talents with a scalpel to good use in the hospitals in Paris, Wynn pushes the boundaries of medical science to give his patients the best care possible. After treating Svetlana for a minor injury, he is pulled into a world of decaying imperial glitter. Intrigued by this mysterious, cold, and beautiful woman, Wynn follows Svetlana to an underground Russian club where drink, dance, and questionable dealings collide on bubbles of vodka.

Out of money and options, Svetlana agrees to a marriage of convenience with the handsome and brilliant Wynn, who will protect her and pay off her family’s debts. It’s the right thing for a good man to do, but Wynn cannot help hoping the marriage will turn into one of true affection. When Wynn’s life takes an unexpected turn, so does Svetlana’s—and soon Paris becomes as dangerous as Petrograd. And as the Bolsheviks chase them to Scotland, Wynn and Svetlana begin to wonder if they will ever be able to outrun the love they are beginning to feel for one another.

I spy Romance

I spy some Romance….

Let’s get swept away….

Dream away….

Take your pick.

Perpetually cheerful and eager to please, Gracie Cooper strives to make the best out of every situation. So when her father dies just months after a lung cancer diagnosis, she sets aside her dreams of pursuing her passion for art to take over his Midtown Manhattan champagne shop. She soon finds out that the store’s profit margins are being squeezed perilously tight, and complicating matters further, a giant corporation headed by the impossibly handsome, but irritatingly arrogant Sebastian Andrews is proposing a buyout. But Gracie can’t bear the thought of throwing away her father’s dream like she did her own.

Overwhelmed and not wanting to admit to her friends or family that she’s having second thoughts about the shop, Gracie seeks advice and solace from someone she’s never met—the faceless “Sir”, with whom she connected on a blind dating app where matches get to know each other through messages and common interests before exchanging real names or photos.

But although Gracie finds herself slowly falling for Sir online, she has no idea she’s already met him in real life…and they can’t stand each other.

When Royal Academy painting student Lucy Coover trips over a naked man passed out in an East End alley, she does the decent thing. She covers him up and fetches help. Trouble is, she can’t banish his muscular form from her dreams as easily. Compelled to capture every detail, she creates a stunning portrait but is forced to sell it when the rent comes due. What could be worse than surrendering the very picture of your desire? Meeting the man himself. 

Anthony Philby, Duke of Weston, is nobody’s muse. Upon discovering the scandalous likeness, he springs into action. His infamous family has been torn apart by shame and secrets, and he can’t afford more gossip. Even a whisper may jeopardize his inheritance and his chance at independence. His plan is simple: burn the painting, confront the artist. Or rather, it’s simple until he meets Lucy and decides to offer the bewitching young artist a devil’s bargain.  He’ll help save her foreclosed home, if she’ll help repair his family’s brutal legacy.

An irresistible passion ignites between them, but when danger strikes, Lucy and Anthony must risk everything… for a love that might destroy them both.

SOMETIMES YOU’RE THE CURSE . . .

Disgraced wedding planner Zuri Davis is so relieved to be offered a job with Fairy Godmothers, Inc., she’s willing to trade the high-rise excitement of Chicago for the small-town charm of Ever After. Falling for one of her grooms, even unintentionally, was enough destroy her career—and also to prove that all men are indeed frogs. But when she meets gorgeous B&B owner Philip Charming, who definitely lives up to his name, even she is tempted to test that theory . . .

AND SOMETIMES YOU’RE THE CURE

Three hundred years as a frog by day and himself by night, is enough to test any man’s patience—even if Philip knows he deserved Petunia’s curse. It certainly taught him not to mess around when it comes to making promises. And stubborn, proud Zuri is a woman he’d like to promise his heart and everything else to—if only he weren’t a sometimes-frog. Can he hope for True Love’s Kiss from a woman whose trust has been so thoroughly broken?

Review: Midnight with the Devil by Emma Castle

I received a copy of this book from the author for an honest review!



SUMMARY:
What would you do to save a loved one’s life? Make a pact with the Devil?

In Diana Kingston’s defense, it was the middle of the night in the deserted hospital chapel… surely it was just a dream. She hadn’t really sold herself to a brooding stranger to save her father’s life, right? Then she wakes and her father is fully recovered and a mysterious letter arrives from the tall, dark, handsome—um, Devil? Yep, it was right there on the contract, Lucien Star, aka Lucifer Morningstar, that had been his name in the dream… Gulp. What would the Devil himself want with her? Sex. Three months of hot, sweaty, Friday night sex.

Breaking a pact with the Devil doesn’t seem like a smart move. So she’ll do it—but she won’t like it. Not much anyway. But she starts liking it – a lot—and every night they spend together, she likes it and Lucien a little more. Being with him allows her naughty side to come out and play, but Diana starts to see more than just a sexy-as-sin, rock-hard … er…Anyway, he might be Satan, but even he was an angel once. Kind. Noble. And she sees glimpses of that man still inside him… But how in Heaven’s name do you save the Devil from himself?

MY REVIEW:
Well this book was steamy. I honestly say it has been a while since I’ve read something this steamy. I admit I did blush at a few things! If you do not like really really steamy things then this book may not be for you. Remember I write reviews that I like and capture my attention. I ended up reading this book last night in one sitting, I could not put it down. I had to know what was going to happen.

The connection of Diana and Lucien (Lucifer) at first is what you think it would be when the deal being made, pretty straightforward deal right? They’d meet up and do the deed and be on the way right? Well, when they continue to meet each time, ,the connection between the two begin to grow for the better. It was pretty intense connection.

I did like the paranormal aspects to the story when Lucien used his powers.

There were even some funny parts that I did now see coming. Text messages back and forth was so fun to read! When Diana ends up taking Lucien grocery shopping. Just imagine! There are a few bit more scenes that had me smiling.

The ending I did not see coming!! My heart was like on a roller coaster.

When I finished the book and had a few moments to think about it, the story kind of reminded me of the tv show “Lucifer”. They are so similar and yet so different. If you liked the tv show Lucifer, you might like this book since it’s a tad steamier than the show. I really liked the book.

One word that keeps sticking out in my mind is “Pineapple.” If you read the book you know what I’m talking about. (blushes)

Well the author made an impression on me with this story.