Featured Read Friday: I Had a Nice Time and Other Lies…

So originally I was going to start this post off with some bullshit along the lines of, “Well I’m a romance writer so I love romance and I find any material on dating and relationships soooooo fascinating.  That’s why I came across this book and it’s just sooooo great I had to recommend it.”

But fuck it.  Hi, I’m Samantha. I’m a romance writer, I’m single, and I hate dating.  I used to be really good at dating.  Before Tinder, Bumble, and Hinge came into the world.  I’m actually really good at relationships.  I just haven’t been able to get to that point.  Probably because for a writer, I’m not very refined in the art of the text message. I seriously suck at it.  What’s too much? What’s not enough? Does that read too harsh and not playful?  I sounded mad?  What?  I put a “ha!” after.  That’s not anger, that’s jovial!

I’ve done it all.  Listen to the podcasts. Watched the shows. Read the articles. Bought the books: He’s Just Not That Into You, Get the Guy, Modern Romance…etc…

And those are all great books.  Do not get me wrong.  I have learned a lot from all of them and for some people they work. But they all have one thing in common.

They’re all written by dudes, and therefore, are all dudes’ advice for women.  Yes, I know, He’s Just Not That Into You, was written along with a woman. But the dude owned that book.  And like I said don’t get me wrong, he’s a smart dude, it’s great advice.  But sometimes a girl just needs to hear it from her girls (or in this case the girls who wrote the book).

Enter the Betches and their book I Had A Nice Time and Other Lies…: How to Find Love & Sh*t Like That.

Now, I want you to memorize this: WWBD?

That’s going to be your godsend from now on whenever you have: a bad dating app match, ghosted text convo, or an hour lost to over analyzing anything to do with a guy.  Just stop the madness! Ask yourself “What Would the Betches Do?” (Hence WWBD?). The only other acceptable meaning for WWBD? is What Would Beyonce Do? Well, Beyonce doesn’t need the Betches book, she has Lemonade. She’s good. And if she wasn’t, she’d do what the Betches are telling you to do. Trust me. They’re of the same badass mindset.

Who are the Betches? The Betches are three badass (I’m saying badass a lot, I know, but it’s true. So, fuck you Repetition Police), business-saavy, social media champions, female, friends who met in college (Cornell, holla! I didn’t go there but my older sister did so it’s basically the same thing), and created a blog that turned out to be an instant success. Why? Because it’s funny, intelligent, and real. Oh, and it’s geared towards women. Because men have enough. (Try and argue this men, and I will hound you with loads of articles telling you you’re wrong. This is my blog. Stop it.)   You may read more about their awesomeness here. So, being a blog/Instagram geared towards women, of course the Betches are going to handle dating.

Is this book mind-blowing, never before spoken revelations? No. It’s not.  Because there really isn’t anything new.  But it’s effective as fuck.

Why?  Because if you take it seriously, and apply what they say (because um hello Cornell?), this book undoes everything that the current dating society has manifested in women, single or otherwise, everywhere.  It’s the most feminine feminist book ever.  #slay.  And it’s funny.  Because the Betches are hilarious.  Duh.  This book is for the woman who needs to revamp her game (not just dating but in life), not because she doesn’t have any, or hasn’t ever had any, but because her game is there, it’s just gotten a little dull.  Polish it baby! Rock this advice! You do you, boo.  Just not the you before you read this book, we hated her fake sad ass.

But what about what guys think?  I mean guys know what guys want right?

STOP CARING WHAT GUYS THINK! They don’t care what you think! (No they do. The good ones at least).

The Betches are smart, I’ve said this.  They anticipated your whining by adding who they refer to as “the Head Pro.”  He’s a dude.  He never says it outright but pretty sure he is. He talks about dudes and says “we”, implying he part of the dudes group.  He’s a dude alright?

See? Badass chicks giving badass advice, with a little take from a dude here and there. The Betches have you covered.   Once again, this is probably stuff you HAVE heard before. You just weren’t ready to listen. But the Betches deliver it in a way that doesn’t make you feel like shit. Instead it makes you say “okay time to get over myself and be a badass bitch.” Or betch in this case.

Now read this book.  Better yourself for you, because you fucking deserve it, and then go get some.

Later gators.




Featured Read Friday: Ride Steady

Dude. What. A. Week.

I’m pretty sure “wine me bro,” has become my new catch phrase. My hair isn’t listening to me, all my things are hiding from me, the raw cookie dough in my fridge I’m supposed to turn into cookies keeps ending up in my mouth (even though I explicitly told it that I’m not eating sweets for dinner anymore), I’m somehow ridiculously busy (probably because I’m really good at over booking myself) and no one in Seattle but me knows how to drive.  What’s a girl to do?

Ignore everything, pour yourself a glass of wine, sit your butt down somewhere nice and read a Kristen Ashley novel. Seriously. Her books are commonly referred to as crack and it’s a legitimate comparison (I think. I’ve never done crack, but I hear it’s some addictive stuff). I have yet to find one of her books that on my first read I am not up all night, telling myself just one more chapter, right before I’m swearing at my alarm clock because it’s yelling at me to get ready for work (who needs sleep?). They’re that good. So, of course I read them multiple times. Especially when I’ve had a week like this week. I don’t have the patience to be disappointed by a book.  So I go with what I know and this week I’ve gone with Ride Steady.

Ride Steady is part of the Chaos series. No, it’s not the first book but the great thing about Ashley is she is such a strong writer it doesn’t matter. Sure, sticking to reading order is nice, especially for those of the OCD nature, but you know what? Go be wild! Jump in mid series! Then swim backwards or forwards through the other books. You can go any way you choose. Yay choices!

Now let’s do a little synopsis and then why I vote you should read this book. (Okay, turns out I suck at writing synopses… I have no chill and spoil everything. Here is one courtesy of KA’s website ):

“Once upon a time, Carissa Teodoro believed in happy endings. Money, marriage,         motherhood: everything came easy–until she woke up to the ugly truth about her Prince Charming. Now a struggling single mom stranded by flat tire, Carissa’s pondering her mistake when a vaguely familiar knight rides to her rescue on a ton of horsepower.

In high school, Carson Steele was a bad boy loner who put Carissa on a pedestal where she stayed far beyond his reach. Today, he’s the hard-bodied biker known only as Joker, and from the way Carissa’s acting, it’s clear she’s falling fast. While catching her is irresistible, knowing what to do with her is a different story. A good girl like Carissa is the least likely fit with the Chaos Motorcycle Club. Too bad holding back is so damned hard. Now, as Joker’s secrets are revealed and an outside threat endangers the club, Joker must decide whether to ride steady with Carissa–or ride away forever…”

Sounds good, but what did you think about it Samantha?

Well since I’m recommending it obviously I thought it was killer. I think KA is killer. I am a 100% biased fan girl. But I’ll back it up a little too.

1) Details & descriptions. I’m one of those people that when I find a person fascinating, I find details about them fascinating (in a non creepy obsessive way). How do they decorate? What do they eat? Why do they like the shows they like?… etc. You learn a lot about a person by looking at not what’s just in front of you, but also in how they express themselves in every aspect of life (I believe this is called depth).  KA graciously provides this insight throughout the book.  I particularly love how she uses Carissa’s home. By detailing the changes made as Joker spends more time there she shows how Carissa’s “good girl” and Joker’s “bad boy” blend behind closed doors.  Ashley takes an area with potential for conflict (living together is frequently a make it or break it point *hint: they make it*), and uses it to not only bring realism to the couple but also depth to the relationship.

2) Alphas. I’ve decided the A in Ashley stands for Alphas because damn that woman can write a man. They’re the hero a romance reader craves with the realistic flaws a romance reader needs to believe. HOW DO YOU DO IT KA?! HOW?

For example I will give you this quote from our main man Joker:

“Yeah Carrie, it’s you. It’s always been you. It’ll always be you. Fuckin’ always.”

Yowza. In a world of dating apps, where I’m constantly banging my head against a wall because a guy can’t even ask me to hang out, this line makes my heart happy in so many ways. Here’s a dude who knows what he wants and says it, because if he doesn’t get the response he wants back, fuck it, he’ll figure it out. But at least this way his lady knows she’s important, and he’s in it to win it, er… her.

3) Heroines you like and want to be friends with because *GASP* it IS possible for women to like and respect other women! KA is a girl’s girl. In this book Carissa doesn’t like the chick her ex is with (for reasons you’ll find out) but she doesn’t bash her unnecessarily or put her down to make herself feel better. Carissa is a grown up so she handles things like a grown up. Yay adulting!  She also works her ass off at a grocery store, doesn’t expect Joker to pay for everything so she can stay home and eat bon bons, and is a really good mom! Go Carissa!

4) A happy endings that is realistic, with just enough embellishment to keep you hooked throughout the story.

To conclude: in the world of romance novels, Kristen Ashley is my Beyonce. Read Ride Steady and have a great weekend falling in love with Carissa and Joker’s story. Laugh all the laughs, cry all the cries, gasp all the gasps. Go on. Feel all the feels. And when you’re done, go read the rest of the series and fall in love with Chaos.