Nothing Personal by Karina Halle

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It’s just business, nothing personal.

Until you have to work with your ex.

Nothing Personal, an all-new standalone romantic comedy by New York Times Bestselling author Karina Halle is live!

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Nova Lane is having the worst week possible. Her latest relationship ended while on her much-needed vacation, then upon her first day back at work, she learns that her beloved boss has quit – and despite having worked so hard for it, she’s not being considered for his position.

Who is being considered for the position is none other than Kessler Rocha. Her ex-coworker and ex-lover, Kessler’s the man who broke her heart five years earlier and the reason she moved thousands of miles away, switched jobs, and created numerous voodoo dolls in Kessler’s (very burly, very handsome) liking.

Yup. Worst week ever.

New in town and on her turf, Kessler promises he’s not the same man he was – and considering he’s now a single father to a precocious toddler, he’s telling the truth.

But he’s still an arrogant, devilish and dangerously intelligent man who’s taking over the position Nova feels she deserves. The fact that he’s gotten even more sexy over the years doesn’t help either.

Now Nova and Kessler have the choice to let bygones be bygones, or fight with each other every chance they get, with unresolved sexual tension only adding fuel to the flames, creating a fire that might just burn down the whole office.

In the corporate world they say it’s just business, nothing personal.

Nova and Kessler are about to show just how personal things can get.

My review:

Nova returns from a disastrous vacation to learn that her beloved boss and mentor, Mike, had suddenly fallen in love with a tourist and has abandoned his job and home to follow her to Thailand. Nova is certain she’s going to be promoted, though, since she has been working hard for that position for years. She’s blindsided by the news that Mike has recommended someone else to replace him – her ex, Kessler.

Kessler had barely been granted custody of his 3 year old son, Hunter, when he gets the call to uproot their lives and move to Hawaii to take the job. Mike has offered up the use of his house and is providing a nanny for Hunter, so how can Kessler refuse? But it seems he and Nova had different experiences in their previous relationship and breakup so this won’t be easy for either of them. Especially since he’s getting the promotion she’s worked so hard to win.

There is so much to like about this book! Nova. Kessler. Hunter. The chicken! I laughed so much during this book. I also felt for the characters. Both Nova and Kessler were getting in their own way with their assumptions. But they fight so well! Hunter was adorable. I loved how Kessler was throwing himself into being the best dad he could be. The rogue chicken cracked me up and had me laughing out loud. This book addresses serious, timely issues like gender equality and diversity in a fun way, too. It isn’t heavy or preachy, but it’s clear that Kessler has no idea what it means to be a female executive and how his “helping” isn’t really. But this book has so many good illustrations of Nova’s experiences. I love the diverse cast of characters as well.

What didn’t I like? That’s a good question. I’m having a hard time thinking of anything I didn’t like. I really enjoyed this one.

Overall: Read it! It’s funny, it’s sweet, it’s set in Hawaii.

Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥


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Meet Karina:

Karina Halle is a former travel writer and music journalist and The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Bestselling author of The Pact, Love, in English, The Artists Trilogy, Dirty Angels and over 20 other wild and romantic reads. She lives on an island off the coast of British Columbia with her husband and her rescue pup, where she drinks a lot of wine, hikes a lot of trails and devours a lot of books.

Halle is represented by the Root Literary and is both self-published and published by Simon & Schuster and Hachette in North America and in the UK.

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Right Where I Want You by Jessica Hawkins

Title: Right Where I Want You
Author: Jessica Hawkins
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: December 28, 2018

My review:

Georgina in her personal life is afraid. She lets people walk all over her and doesn’t stand up for herself or anyone else. At work as a PR fixer, she lets her altar ego of George take over to get the job done. And she does her job very well. Sebastian first meets Georgina in a coffee shop before meeting her professionally, so he sees the meek side to her and resists when she is introduced as the one to fix his failing magazine, Modern Man. As the weeks go by, they fight their attraction to each other as she fights to improve the magazine and he fights to keep his job. As Sebastian’s friend and coworker remarks, there’s a fine line between love and hate. They reach a truce over Georgina’s terminally ill dog Bruno, and strike up a tenuous friendship. But when they give in and let something more develop between them, their professional lives explode. Georgina also realizes Sebastian is dealing with an altar ego problem just as much as she is. Can their relationship survive everything?

What I liked: I liked so much about this. First: Bruno. Big dogs are my happy and he is a giant. I can relate so much to Georgina’s life with a large breed dog – the bed hog, the jealousy of attention from others, the destruction and need for exercise. That is my life too. The people were interesting, too. Sebastian isn’t the bad boy the media makes him out to be, but he thinks he has to live up to that image to be successful in NYC. He is already in the midst of an identity crisis when the book opens, trying to reconcile who he is professionally with who he is at heart, and wanting to be someone who would have made his mother proud. Georgina is also beginning her own journey of identity discovery. She doesn’t seem to realize that even though she separates her “Georgina” and “George” personalities in her head, they are both her all the time. She is tired of being everyone’s doormat and wants to change but doesn’t quite know how.

Georgina and Sebastian are good for each other, their different personalities complementing the other person. The supporting characters and friendships added a lot to the story as well.

What I didn’t like: I really wanted to read more about their work life. I was surprised when several weeks had passed and the magazine was turning around, because we saw very little of that in the book. Their initial brainstorming meeting was interesting and I wanted to read how some of those ideas played out.

Overall: Fun book, just enough drama to be interesting but not angsty, and extra points for Bruno.

Rating: ♥♥♥♥

There’s a thin line between love and hate . . . and it
cuts right through the middle of their office.
Bad boys? They run
right over good girls like Georgina Keller.
But after a confidence-shattering breakup, she’s determined not to let anyone at her new workplace push her around—least of all the brooding creative director, a “bad
boy of publishing” who’s made it clear she’s enemy #1.
Sebastian Quinn’s taste for fast cars, late nights, and beautiful women may have gotten him to the top of a leading New York magazine, but the reputation that made him is suddenly threatening to end his career.
Georgina can help Modern Man shed its bad reputation, but in order to do
that, she’ll have to start at the top—and no amount of rakish charm or
inconvenient attraction will distract her.
Because if Sebastian gets her right where he wants her,
it means she’s going down.
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At the stadium’s concession stand, I took a tall stool, putting Georgina and I at eye level since she stood. “So, why didn’t you kiss François?” I asked. “Bad breath?”
She gasped into her hand. “My breath is fine.”
“I meant his. I’m sure yours is pure relish on a hotdog.”
She made a face. “Gross.”
“I happen to love relish,” I said. “But does François?”
Each time I said François with flourish, she flinched. I didn’t care. Something about him bugged me—I just couldn’t put my finger on it.
“We didn’t kiss because you interrupted us,” she pointed out.
“So? If I were in his position, and we both wanted that kiss, I wouldn’t let anyone stop
Frank and I are clicking,” she said, scowling. “There was even mention of spending time at his summerhouse.”
She coughed into her fist. “Boca Raton.”
The idea of Georgina spending a summer with him in Boca Raton was tragic enough that I almost smiled. I got the sense she was playing up the date. If it was so great,
why wasn’t she sitting here with him? And why was I more relieved than smug
about that? “Meanwhile, Justin and I will be clamming in Montauk.”
“You two should really just make it official and announce your love to the world.”
“But then I wouldn’t get to flirt with pretty girls.”
“For someone who pretends to have as much game as you,” she said, “I still haven’t
seen you successfully flirt with
any girls since I’ve known you.”
I smirked. “How do you know I’m not flirting with you right now?”
Author Bio
Jessica Hawkins is a USA Today bestselling author known for her “emotionally gripping” and “off-the-charts hot” romance. Dubbed “queen of angst” by both peers and readers for her smart and provocative work, she’s garnered a cult-like following of fans who love to be torn apart…and put back together.
She writes romance both at home in New York and around the world, a coffee shop traveler who bounces from café to café with just a laptop, headphones, and coffee cup. She loves to keep in close touch with her readers, mostly via Facebook,
Instagram, and her mailing list.
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