Author: Courtney Milan

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Hold Me Review

June 4, 2017 Reviews 0 ★★★

Hold Me ReviewHold Me (Cyclone Book 2) by Courtney Milan
on October 25th, 2016
Source: Library
Also by this author: Trade Me (Cyclone, #1)
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three-stars
Jay na Thalang is a demanding, driven genius. He doesn’t know how to stop or even slow down. The instant he lays eyes on Maria Lopez, he knows that she is a sexy distraction he can’t afford. He’s done his best to keep her at arm’s length, and he’s succeeded beyond his wildest dreams.
Maria has always been cautious. Now that her once-tiny, apocalypse-centered blog is hitting the mainstream, she’s even more careful about preserving her online anonymity. She hasn’t sent so much as a picture to the commenter she’s interacted with for eighteen months—not even after emails, hour-long chats, and a friendship that is slowly turning into more. Maybe one day, they’ll meet and see what happens.
But unbeknownst to them both, Jay is Maria’s commenter. They’ve already met. They already hate each other. And two determined enemies are about to discover that they’ve been secretly falling in love…
Hold Me is the second book in the Cyclone series. It stands alone, but those who prefer to read in order may want to read Trade Me first.
The Cyclone Series Reading Order Trade Me Hold Me Find Me What Lies Between Me and You Keep Me Show Me

Hold Me was a wonderfully diverse novel. I was a fan of the author’s first book in this series, and this one didn’t totally disappoint. I was so happy that Maria received her own love story. I thought that Jay made an awesome match for her. However, I did have some reservations that really just came down to my personal reading preferences. I felt like the book was slow in the beginning, and felt like there was too much scientific terminology that just went over my head. I could tell that Courtney Milan did her research on the subject, I just wasn’t in the mood to read about it. I thought the banter was enjoyable, but some of the hate between them was a little much for me. Ultimately, I thought the diverse characters couldn’t have been better, but some of my other issues brought the book down for me.

Maria was so fierce and memorable when she was first introduced in Trade Me. She easily kept up that extraordinary attitude in this book, which I adored. I thought she was funny and sweet in all the right ways. I really enjoyed her character all around. I did have some issues with her blog. I’m not sure how realistic it is that her blog would be that big of a deal. Like how these huge science figures and websites debate about the identity of who the blogger is, I just couldn’t see that actually happening. But who knows, maybe this is a possibility and I’m just being very picky. All that aside, she’s still a solid character who I truly liked reading about. Although her past was so sad, I loved how she made the best out of her future and did well for herself.

Jay made an intriguing love interest for Maria. I loved that he was smart and also seemed to be a hottie at the same time. He wasn’t a perfect character, he had a poor attitude for a lot of the novel. He was a grumpy dude, which wasn’t always exactly fun to read about. I wouldn’t say that he was boring or anything, he was just unique in his own special way. Sometimes his sort of pretentious attitude was a little annoying at times, but it wasn’t horrible in my opinion. I don’t know what else to really say about him, he wasn’t my favorite, but he wasn’t the worst either. I know that isn’t a ringing endorsement, but I liked him quite a bit more once he showed more of vulnerable side and we learned more about why he is so guarded about certain things in his life.

As far as the romance goes, this wasn’t my favorite. I liked how they had this easy banter going on from the beginning. But I still wasn’t sure what to make of the hatred that was going on between them. Meaning, the hate was too much for me at times. I’m a person who typically enjoys hate to love romances, but this time I felt like maybe it went a bit too far. I also liked how they started off communicating anonymously in the virtual world. That’s another trope that I also usually like, but this time I questioned how realistic it actually was. It takes quite awhile for the actual romance to get started between them. At times, I felt like it was a bit on the corny side. I also thought that it was steamy and fascinating once it did get started.

In the end, Hold Me wasn’t a bad book by any means. It was difficult to get started though. I felt like some of the scientific dialogue wasn’t necessary, instead it just made the book extremely slow in my personal opinion. Some aspects of the plot also weren’t realistic to me, which did affect how much I personally enjoyed reading the book. I will admit that Jay and Maria made a wonderful couple. I thought it was great how the relationship developed. I wasn’t a fan of how the hate to love relationship went down, though I have to admit that it was pretty unique. I realized that I didn’t go into a ton of details about the diversity in the book, but I thought that was important. I’m happy that I read this book, though it might have not been my favorite.

three-stars

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Trade Me Review

June 2, 2016 Reviews 0 ★★★★

Trade Me ReviewTrade Me (Cyclone, #1) by Courtney Milan
Published by Courtney Milan on January 19th 2015
Pages: 279
Also by this author: Hold Me (Cyclone Book 2)
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Goodreads
four-stars
Tina Chen just wants a degree and a job, so her parents never have to worry about making rent again. She has no time for Blake Reynolds, the sexy billionaire who stands to inherit Cyclone Technology. But when he makes an off-hand comment about what it means to be poor, she loses her cool and tells him he couldn’t last a month living her life.
To her shock, Blake offers her a trade: She’ll get his income, his house, his car. In exchange, he’ll work her hours and send money home to her family. No expectations; no future obligations.
But before long, they’re trading not just lives, but secrets, kisses, and heated nights together. No expectations might break Tina’s heart...but Blake’s secrets could ruin her life.

I’ve heard a lot of positive things about popular romance author Courtney Milan, so I’m happy that I finally got a chance to read one of her books. I’m not a fan of historical romances, so it’s good news for me that she wrote a contemporary New Adult story. Trade Me was a refreshing and diverse romance. I also really enjoy that Milan touches on social classes here, which is a subject that sadly isn’t touched on enough in NA. In general, I found the plot to be super unique and fascinating. I would definitely recommend it to romance fans!

Tina is an extremely poor college student who is doing her best to not only pay her college tuition, but also help provide for her family at the same time. Tina shares a class with billionaire Blake Reynolds, who makes a comment about being poor and using food stamps that immediately sets her off. She responds by saying he’d never be able to live her life. After this goes down, Blake surprisingly offers to trade lives with her for a whole month. This means trading jobs, houses, cars, the whole nine yards. Much to her dismay, Tina starts liking him more and more, but she doesn’t want the distraction, and he’s keeping secrets from everyone. Could this relationship actually work out in the end?

Though she drove me crazy towards the end of the book, I really liked Tina. She’s a strong woman who is completely selfless. She feels like she owes so much to her family so she does her best to provide for them anyway that she can. My favorite thing about Tina is that she doesn’t take crap from anyone. Once she meets Blake’s father Adam, who runs Cyclone Technology, she doesn’t accept his asshole behavior. I also enjoyed how proud she was of her Chinese culture. The annoying part came from her actions towards the end when she continues to reject a future with Blake. I get why she did it, but it was still just frustrating and a bit drawn out to me. All in all, she was a pretty solid and memorable protagonist.

Blake was an incredible love interest. As I already mentioned, his dad founded Cyclone Technology (think Apple pretty much) and Blake is set to take over for it in the future. He already has a pretty large role in the company as it is. From a very young age, Blake was always the face of the company. He starred in commercials that made his private relationship with his dad very public. Anyway, Blake decides that he needs a break from it all so he begins attending college. His reasons for trading lives with Tina are personal and have to do with the secret that he’s keeping. Not going to spoil anything but the secret wasn’t what I was expecting it to be. It took me by surprise, but I think that Milan handled it well. I really loved Blake and I loved how sure he was about Tina from pretty early on.

Blake and Tina make a seriously cute couple. In the beginning, they have to pretend to be a couple when they go meet his father in order for Tina to secure the fancy new watch that the company is planning on launching soon. So the chemistry between them is a very real thing from the start. Tina does her best to ignore the sparks between them because she wants this to be a business arrangement only. After the trade ends, she wants to cut off all ties with Blake. Though he doesn’t want this to happen, he agrees anyway to please Tina. As you can probably guess, she eventually stops pretending and they finally act on their feelings. I think they made a great couple because it was a slow building one. I felt like they moved at a reasonable pace, and I believed in their relationship completely.

This was a wonderful book and I’m really glad that I tried it out. I’m not a huge fan of stories that involve technology in anyway because a lot of it just goes over my head, but I was able to follow this plot easily. The book had it all: twists, secrets, fake relationship, class differences, diversity, awesome parental figures, memorable supporting characters, and obviously an amazing romance. If you’re not a big fan of tons of smut, you’ll probably like this one because it really doesn’t contain that many super steamy scenes. It has a few, but it doesn’t go into explicit details really. You should definitely read this incredible book before Tina’s friend Maria’s story comes out in July!

four-stars

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