ARC, Book Review, Books

Break Down – Rebecca Norinne

He knows his place on the pitch, but in life, it’s a whole other game.
All his life, Liam Donnelly looked and wondered. Could he? Would he? And then, finally, he did. But when he sampled a taste of that forbidden fruit, his whole world came crashing down, his position with Dublin Rugby right along with it. When the chance to ply his trade in Edinburgh comes along, Liam jumps at the offer, knowing it could be his best opportunity to start fresh and get back to the man he once was. But one look at Chef Lachlan MacLeod-his knowing, whisky-colored eyes, the abrasive scruff dotting his jaw, and the colorful ink lining his forearms-and Liam’s wondering all over again. Can he? Will he? His heart says no, but his body says yes. Too bad love is never that simple.

He’s conquered his own demons; can he help another man do the same?
Out and proud Chef Lachlan MacLeod has no problem with who he is, except he has a history of hooking up with bi-curious straight men. He’s vowed never to go down that path again, but when Liam Donnelly shows up in his restaurant, his eyes filled with heat and secret longing, Lachlan can’t help himself. He knows the closeted rugby player is a terrible idea, but the man calls to him in a way no one ever has before. What started as a safe way for Liam to explore his sexuality quickly morphs into something much deeper, and now Lachlan wants more. But can his heart reconcile what his head already knows-that loving the gorgeous, broken athlete might actually mean letting him go?

I’d like to thank Rebecca Norinne and Forever Valentine PR for sending me an e-arc of this book it is very much appreciated. This is the 4th book in the Dublin Rugby series it can be read as a standalone, but if like me you like to read them in order: Trying Sophie, Ruck Me, Scrumptious and then finally Break Down. I have loved each and every one of them and had high expectations for this 4th book and no surprise Rebecca Norinne exceeded them!

To start with it was an M/M if that isn’t your thing I don’t advise reading it, but if you’ve never read one then I would definitely say that you should give this book a chance. I felt like the representation was pretty much spot on in the Rugby setting.

I loved Liam, he made me laugh so much and I loved his personality, I did think at times he could be a little cocky and self-centred which as always comes back to bite him in the ass. It was part of his charm and I loved it. I really liked Lachlan, I loved how he spoke about food and how confident he was in the kitchen and with cooking. I really liked the scenes where they were at the restaurant.

Lachlan refused to go back into the closet and I really loved that about him, that he was willing to lose somebody he loved just so he could be happy with himself. I was really glad that he wasn’t willing to go back into the closet just to make Liam feel more comfortable with hiding his sexuality from people.

That being when it came to Liam dealing with his sexuality Rebecca Norinne it showed the confusion for what he felt and it was showed amazing! I felt she represented it correctly and right that when you are in that situation it is the things that are thought about. Lachlan does really well on trying to be supportive whilst Liam figures things out.

I loved seeing Declan in this story, as well as some of the other boys from the other novels. In the other books, we had the team aspect where they all knew each other where in this story Liam is getting used to a new team and at first he feels very uncomfortable and thinks they have a problem with him, although that’s just a misunderstanding. It was nice to see them come together as a team and even accept him for being gay.

What I thought was great about this novel was the fact that the discussion of gay rugby men, especially because there have been so many cases where people have been in the news saying that they didn’t feel comfortable enough to come out and that they have been maybe ostracised from the team because of their sexual orientation. Although as of recent years it has become more accepted and embraced but that doesn’t mean it made it any easier for Liam to accept it into his life. The book manages to perfectly represent the kind of confusion that Liam went for in terms of accepting his sexuality and how that would impact his life.

Rebecca Norinne’s writing was flawless, it made me feel their pain and heartbreak and happiness all at the same time. Her writing just makes me feel things and it was amazing.

Book Review, Books

Scrumptious – Rebecca Norinne

Chef Lauren Andrews is cooking up something seriously hot with a rugby player ten years her junior. It shouldn’t add up, but when they get together, age ain’t nothing but a number.

Some people came to Ireland for adventure or love. Not me. When I landed in Dublin, it was because my job as a sous chef had imploded on national TV. Humiliated and jobless, I landed a temporary gig as a cook for a rugby team, a sport I knew nothing about. All I wanted to do was save up enough money to get my food truck off the ground back home.

I certainly wasn’t looking for a relationship, especially with someone like Donal Casey, the team’s cocksure young hooker. It was supposed to be a fling, nothing permanent. At least that’s what we told ourselves. But what if you found love in the most unexpected place, with the most unlikely partner? What lengths would you go to keep him?

I have a feeling I’m about to find out. Because even though people say I’m wrong for him, when I’m in Donal’s arms, everything feels oh so right.

So if you haven’t been following my blog for a while you won’t know how obsessed with Rebecca Norinne I have become since first reading Trying Sophie, and then carrying on to read Ruck Me and Ashes to Ashes I am obsessed. I love her writing and what it does to me like it just makes me feel all the emotions and feelings! So starting this book I knew that no doubt I was going to fall hopelessly in love with this story and I did!

I loved Donal, the way he acted so cocky and so sure of himself, so when he wasn’t feeling like that it was so nice and sweet. Also when we saw some of his insecurities when it came to being like his father it melted my heart. Also discovering he was, in fact, a virgin was a surprise and I loved the fact he managed to confide in Eoin about it as well as Lauren. I loved how fast he actually fell for her too it was so sweet and he really didn’t care about the age difference between them.

I loved Lauren and although she knew she was good at her cooking skills sometimes she was unsure about them. I also thought it was honourable how she wouldn’t flip on her old boss when he was a cruel asshole to her. She was very insecure about her age when it came to being with Donal and even more when he told her he was a virgin. Although one of my favourite things in this book is that scene when she finds out and she’s shocked because and his response was he’s not celibate. If you’ve read the book you know which I mean but yeah that really did make me chuckle. I loved her insecurities and although it took a time she did finally share them.

I loved their relationship and although they fell for each other fast, I loved them getting to know each other. The sex was very well written and mature. I loved the bond that they created and the fact Donal was willing to sacrifice and move with Lauren so they could be together. It was also very nice seeing a couple that didn’t want kids, although for Lauren she couldn’t but yes it was very nice seeing a couple that didn’t want kids.

I loved the appearance of Eoin and Aoife in this novel it’s always nice seeing the other characters appear in the novel.

ARC, Book Review, Books

Ruck Me – Rebecca Norinne

I’ve called Aoife O’Shaughnessy a number of things, but dumb was never one of them. Through all the insane things she’s done—all the trouble she’s gotten into—I never once thought she was actually stupid.

Until now.

Because I just heard her plan to lose her virginity to the vilest human being I’ve ever met. My first thought? How the fuck is Aoife still a virgin? The second? Over my dead body.

So I volunteered for the job instead.

It might be the stupidest thing I’ve ever done, but once the words were out of my mouth I couldn’t take them back. Suddenly, I can’t stop wondering what it would be like to kiss the pink-haired sprite I’ve known my whole life, to hear her moan my name when she comes for the first time.

And now she’s wondering about me too.

It was only supposed to be sex, but now I’m in deep. I never meant to fall in love with her; this wasn’t supposed to happen. And what came next? Well, neither of us planned on that. 

I loved loved loved this is the spin off story to Trying Sophie I loved that one and this was truly no different. Rebecca’s writing is brilliant, everything she writes I truly connect with it, as well as when anything super emotional happens I can really feel the characters and what they are feeling and I really love how her writing does that to me. Just it’s the best.

I really loved Eoin and Aoife’s relationship and although they call each other a lot Eoin is very protective over Aoife and I loved it. I also loved that they had a sex talk so to speak it was so funny and awkward but I definitely imagine that is how it is in real life so I think it was funny. I loved Aoife’s innocence and that she was a virgin and for the most part, it was lovely to see where it wasn’t shamed that at her age she was except obviously feeling pressured by some of her friends but Eoin didn’t make her feel shame for it and I loved it.

We also see Declan in this novel and he is a very protective of Aoife and although he took it too far at times when it came down to it, he was there when she needed him. So I really love Declan and how all he wants to do is protect his sister.

I feel like when Aoife got pregnant she should have told someone other than her co-worker who wasn’t very supportive and that she should have either told Sophie (Declan’s partner) or Eoin, I wasn’t very pleased with how she dealt with the situation especially when the trip to London came when she wanted to have an abortion, she didn’t. I feel like she went around it the wrong way it was only as she got to London she tried to tell him but I feel like it should have been a lot sooner that she told him.

One thing with Rebecca’s writing when both of these characters were hurting for certain reasons you could feel both of their pain, frustration and love and when they break up and got back together. I felt it all from both Aofie and Eoin’s side, it was so nice and as I say that is a lot to do with the writing. But I felt both sorry for Aofie and Eoin and I didn’t think any of them were right or wrong, just felt both of their pain and it was so sad. Obviously, the story ends on a happy note and I loved it.

Such an amazing book and I definitely can’t wait to read more of her work because it’s fantastic.

Book Review, Books

Trying Sophie – Rebecca Norinne

Sex and rugby are the only things I care about. I play hard and f*ck even harder.

Until my first love waltzes back into my life and I’m given a second chance to right the wrongs of my past.

She doesn’t want to forgive me, but I’ll use everything at my disposal to make her see I’ve changed. That I can be the man she wants me to be.

I’ve never pursued a woman the way I chase down opponents on the field, but this time I won’t back down. I won’t let her run away again.

Sophie was my first love. I’m going to be her last.

I read this book in preparation for the sequel which is going to be released in a few days and I am so excited for it. One thing that really was great about this book is that it had a little glossary on how to pronounce the names I didn’t really need it but it is very helpful for those who do need it! Especially as they are Irish names!

Sophie is such a strong character and she really struggled to let people in I am not surprised though because when we meet her mother also the only time. Her mum is a cold hearted and selfish bitch. She didn’t tell Sophie about her granddad’s heart attack, so instantly I hated the mum. I loved her grandparents Maureen and Colm they are the sweetest and I love how motivated they are. They were just great.

I loved this book in so many different ways, there were so many times during this book I laughed out loud! One of them being when Declan picks Sophie up from the airport and realises who he actually is. Her childhood tormenter! But she doesn’t let him off easy she, in fact, tells him that he made her life hell and I absolutely loved her standing up for herself and Declan finally realises the pain he caused her and I loved that. Declan also admits how much of a slut he is and it really did make me laugh how he wasn’t even ashamed to admit all that!

Declan although a little slut is still very cautious with people and is worried that people will use him for his money there is a scene where Sophie asks for a favour and he gets kind of taken back thinking it could be for money and I think that told us a lot about his character before we actually got into the nitty gritty stuff of him. So we had little clues about both of these characters as we got to know them.

Cian he is the person who works sometimes at the pub but he is also supposedly Declan’s best friend but he is majorly jealous of Declan and it shows and ripples through their friendship as well as their actions with Sophie.

Declan and Sophie go through a game of pushing each other away as soon as they begin to get close and eventually when they do finally admit their feelings for each other they fall for each other hard. They fall in love with each other and when they both realise that they love each other it’s so funny. They keep it to themselves.

One of the side characters I loved was Aoife who is Declan’s younger sister and when certain problems come between Declan and Sophie she was there defending her big brother and it was the cutest thing ever. The spin off story Ruck me is about Aofie and I honestly can’t wait to read it!

The story was sweet an amazing end, I loved the writing, the characters made me fall in love with them hard. It was a cute romantic story and even better that I could imagine the majority of them talking in an Irish accent because I love an Irish accent! I definitely cannot wait for Ruck me when it comes out!