The Play by Karina Halle!

the play

First off, I just want to start by saying how much I loved this book! It was one of my favourite reads in the month of October, and definitely in my top 10 books of the year so far! Karina Halle is fast becoming one of my favourite authors – I’ve read quite a few books of hers this year and so far I’ve loved them all!

The Play can be read as a standalone romance novel, but it’s also a companion novel to The Pact and The Offer. These books feature the wonderful McGregor men – a new addiction of mine! It follows Kayla Moore and Lachlan McGregor, two very passionate people, who has insane chemistry!  Lachlan is a Scottish rugby player who has come to San Francisco to help out his cousin Bram with his new business venture. He’s only set to be in San Francisco for a few weeks, so from the start we know there is a time constraint on this relationship – but that kept me turning the pages! I needed to know if it would all end after the two weeks or if somehow they would make it work! I needed them to make it work!

Karina Halle definitely has a talent for creating wonderful, swoon worthy, attractive men! But with Lachlan she created a character with a really painful backstory…he definitely didn’t have an easy life. I just wanted to give him a big hug!! And his love for dogs!! As a dog lover myself – I have a golden retriever and a collie cross, we got both through a dog rescue – that was a part of the story that really affected me. Lachlan’s love for dogs, and his determination to show that so called ‘bully breed’ dogs aren’t actually bad like people make them out to be really touched me!  It definitely made me want to run out to nearest dog rescue and bring all the dogs home with me! I think my parents would kill me if they came home to that though!

I follow Karina Halle on instagram, she’s so lovely – and for some reason I absolutely love her taste in shoes! – and was generous enough to donate $1 per pre-order – and she raised a ton of money, I’m sure it was around $11,000, to give to animal charities!!! I think its such an amazing thing that she did! I don’t know many authors who would do that! I also saw that she had a lot of inspiration for Lachlan’s character from Tom Hardy (another SWOONWORTHY man!!)  who is also a big supporter of animal charities, and for raising awareness about bully breed dogs! I think this is a perfect fit for Lachlan!

tom hardy

Kayla and Lachlan’s story was very different to Steph and linden’s and to Nicola and Bram’s. But it was equally as good. I found it to be a lot more painful – raw. It touched me that bit more. It made me sad, it made me angry, and it made me fall in love – it really did give me all the feels! With Kayla and Lachlan I couldn’t help but be rooting for them the whole time!!

If you love a romance that has angst and feelings, a hot Scottish rugby player, and cute dogs then you should totally pick this one up! And if you haven’t picked up The Pact or The Offer yet then you should definitely check those out for two more insanely attractive yet loveable Scots!

the pactthe offer

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon!

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I have been intimidated by Outlander for so long! I’ve been wanting to read it for a while but it’s just so huge – my copy has nearly 900 pages! But it’s so popular and I wanted to give it ago…and I’m so glad I did! It was so, so good! Outlander is a cross between fantasy and historical fiction that is set in the Scottish Highlands in the 18th century. It is filled with romance, action, history, and adventure. I loved it!

Outlander follows Claire Randall, a former combat nurse, who is  transported from 1945 back to 1743 through a circle of stones in the Scottish Highlands. Claire is thrown into the warfare and danger of the Mackenzie clan – leaving behind her husband Frank in the 20th century. As a “Sassenach”, an outsider, Claire has to find her way in a completely new life. Thankfully, she has a young Scot, Jamie Fraser, to help her!

Ahh…Jamie Fraser, the new love of my life! He’s strong, and sarcastic, and sweet! He’s also a fugitive on the run from the English – specifically Frank’s sadistic relative “Black Jack” Randall. I was definitely won over by Jamie’s charm, and I thought he was a great match for Claire. Their romance was really well done, it developed throughout the book and it didn’t feel rushed at all. I thought Claire’s thoughts and feelings about her new love Jamie and her lost husband Frank came across really well. I liked how she didn’t just forget about Frank despite falling for the handsome Scot. Claire was a very headstrong, stubborn, and independent woman – a complete opposite to the quiet, submissive woman expected in the 1700s. This got Claire in trouble on more than one occasion!

One of my favourite things about this book was all the history and culture of Scotland. Now I don’t know how accurate it was but for me it really made the story! The description was so detailed, it pulled me in from the start. I’ve been to Scotland before but I haven’t seen very much of it, but reading Outlander has definitely made me want to go back,  this time to see more of the history and the Scottish Highlands where Outlander is supposed to be set.

I’ve heard great things about the Outlander TV  show that started in America in 2014.I NEED to watch it! It has to be aired in the UK! I think the DVD comes out soon so I’ll have to get my hands on it! The actor who plays Jamie looks like I imagined Jamie would – very attractive! I just want to see the book brought to life!

Outlander is great , unique time travel romance set in such an interesting time period! I would definitely recommend picking this book up! Diana Gabaldon has created such an amazing, immersive world! And I can’t wait to get back into it! Honestly, don’t be intimidated by it – its 900 pages of awesomeness!