Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The Secret Life of Amy Benson - Book 1 and 2 - Lisa Renee Jones

I read some really awesome books this weekend, but these two, Escaping Reality and Infinite Possibilities, really took me by surprise. I received the first from Netgalley, completing it in one night, and when I woke up in the morning I knew I had to get some answers. I ended up purchasing the second on Amazon for Kindle and pre-ordering book three and four! That is how much I enjoyed them, because I try not to order books unless it's planned reading. Sure, they aren't my normal genre, but the mystery in these books totally had me hook, line, and sinker. 
The tagline below, attached to both Escaping Reality and Infinite Possibilities, kinda pulled me in. Okay, it really pulled me in, if there's a pile of people waiting on book 3 and 4, why am I not waiting on them too? 

"Catch up with the NYT sexy, thrilling bestselling mystery THE SECRET LIFE OF AMY BENSEN SERIES, before the highly anticipated books 3 and 4, FORSAKEN (Aug. 18th) and UNBROKEN (Sept. 7th), release!  Both available for pre-order now! "

So, now I own both books, I'm waiting for my delivery of book three to hit my Kindle today, and the fourth book in a few weeks. For now, while I keep checking my Kindle for Forsaken to download, I will review book one and two.

Escaping Reality
4 stars
I received a copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
This version was published in May of 2015, originally published June of 2014.

"At the young age of eighteen, tragedy and a dark secret force Lara to flee all she has known and loved to start a new life. Now years later, with a new identity as Amy, she’s finally dared to believe she is forgotten—even if she cannot forget. But just when she lets her guard down, the ghosts of her past are quick to punish her, forcing her back on the run.

On a plane, struggling to face the devastation of losing everything again and starting over, Amy meets Liam Stone, a darkly entrancing billionaire recluse, who is also a brilliant, and famous, prodigy architect. A man who knows what he wants and goes after it. And what he wants is Amy. Refusing to take “no” as an answer, he sweeps her into a passionate affair, pushing her to her erotic limits. He wants to possess her. He makes her want to be possessed. Liam demands everything from her, accepting nothing less. But what if she is too devastated by tragedy to know when he wants more than she should give?"

If you read this and aren't hooked in within the first few pages, leading up to Amy taking off for the airport, I don't think you are reading the right book. Who is chasing after Amy? Who told Amy to run? Why does she trust this person? With that, I went along for the ride, from the airplane to the sparse apartment to the questionable job.Of course, there happens to be a handsome, rich, and overbearing man involved. Liam Stone sounds like a man's man, of course he has some real issues with taking control, and not just in the bedroom. He "doesn't do" girlfriends, yet he immediately takes to Amy like someone takes to a hurt puppy. Feeds her, provides furniture, a phone, and even clothing once he deems hers as cheap. I shouldn't like this guy and I really appreciate that Amy doesn't at first either. She's headstrong and questions everything, which made her a really likable character for me. Of course, she ends up falling for Liam and I do too. He wants to take care of her and seems genuinely interested in her safety. 

The overall general confusion in Amy's head leads to some interesting revelations. The tragedy in her life plagues her daily, causing flashbacks and worrisome moments when she passes out. We find out her dad is an archaeologist, raising the entire family in a unique environment of traveling and uncovering rare items, but something happened with her family, between her mom and dad, that caused a whirlwind of events. Now Amy is on the run from whatever that is, but things are not as they seem.

While I really liked the mystery and the character of Amy, I had some struggles with Liam and a lot of issues with some of the other minor characters. There wasn't enough detail for me to understand them or grow attached to them the way Amy did. Additionally, there is a major cliffhanger that will tear you to pieces if you don't read on to book two. I am not a fan of cliffhangers. Lisa Renee Jones did a fantastic job of creating an environment that perfectly showed how Amy treats life after the tragedy. She's exactly what I would expect out of a tragedy victim and treads carefully. I think the other characters, while underdeveloped, assisted in bringing the story to life. I enjoyed the overall plot and it was different than a lot of the books on the market right now.

Infinite Possibilities

4 Stars
Published June 2014

"Secrets and lies. They are everywhere: haunting her, tormenting her. In the midst of it all, he’d been her escape, her passion. The only person she’d trusted in six years. And then he’d made her doubt that trust, cutting her deeply. But as she’d once told him, she was damaged, not broken. She is ready to fight and not just for survival. She is fighting for the truth and she won’t stop until she has it, not even for…him."

Infinite Possibilies begins where Escaping Reality left off, Amy is on the run, she's gone through several locations now, and is hiding as a waitress in a tiny joint. She now believes Liam is the one she's been on the run from and she does not want to be captured by him, but she still has feelings for him and she doesn't understand how he felt so good and safe. She's also starting to remember more about 6 years ago and the tragedy that struck her family. Her blackouts are more frequent and she's begun piecing together the clues and names she can remember. Infinite Possibilities introduces us to a lot of new characters and provides the answers needed to understand the mystery involving the family. 

Again, I loved the mystery in this book. This book answers every question about who really is involved in the tragedy, why it happened, and what needs to be done going forward. I became a lot more attached to Amy in this book, because she's been dealt such a rough hand and is finding out a lot of bad instead of good. Plus, there's not two attractive men and they're both there to help. This is a sexy suspense for sure and I can't write more without giving it all away.I have one major complaint, it was wrapped up far too quickly for me. The book is flowing, giving us answers and bringing us deeper into the story line and the mystery, then bam, it's done. Not only does it leave you with another cliffhanger, but it happened so suddenly I felt like I needed at least another chapter. Of course, that works in Lisa Renee Jones' favor, because I pre-ordered book 3 immediately. 

I would definitely suggest The Secret Life of Amy Benson series if you are looking for quick reads with suspense, romance, and a side of erotica. I really enjoyed both of them and I am looking forward to more answers in book three, as well as reading from a new perspective. 

Post a Comment

© Carlene Inspired. Made with love by The Dutch Lady Designs.