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Monday, November 4, 2019

Hanami and Hazakura by V.C. Buckley - Book Tour - DOUBLE Book Review!! - Giveaway - Enter Daily!!


Hey, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host V.C. Buckley and her new books, “Hanami” and “Hazakura”!  For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!  Also, come back daily to interact with V.C. and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!


Hanami
Book One
by V.C. Buckley

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GENRE: Romance, New Adult, Romantic Suspense, Contemporary

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BLURB:

“I am no princess… I am Yakuza,”

SAKURA SHINTANI is the heir to the Dragon Clan—Japan’s most notorious crime dynasty. But can she keep this fact a secret from the annoying brats of Oniyuri Academy?

She must try to master her demons while trying not to hurt anyone. But having the face of an angel puts her on everyone’s radar… including the arrogant heir to Asia’s most powerful tycoon, KENJIN KIYOHARA. He senses the danger, but Sakura is too interesting to be left alone.

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EXCERPT TWO:

He snatched her backpack and swung it around his shoulder.

“Hey!” she protested, lunging for it.

Jin stepped aside, evading her grasp. He smiled to himself, taking long strides toward his car. He could hear her feet going after him.

Mr. Fujimaru was already by the car, holding the door open. His guards stood waiting like goons by the sidewalk.

“Look,” she said, grabbing his elbow before he could duck into his car, “I don’t care if you rescued me. I am not going with you! I don’t even know you!”

Her words cut right through him.

She lunged for her bag again, but Jin threw it into the farthest corner of the back seat.

He looked at her tilting his head down, their height difference apparent. He thought about what she said.

She doesn’t know me? His forehead creased. Was he really that invisible to her? He felt like someone had just slapped him across the face. He took one long look at her before ducking into his car.

He was confused. Any girl would jump at the chance to be with him—she should have been honored and groveling at his feet for rescuing her! What was wrong with her?

He felt her slide into the seat next to him, her knees slightly touching the side of his thigh. But before he could think, she reached across him, leaning her upper body against his lap to grab her bag. Jin froze.

She straightened back up, clutching her bag to her chest. Her eyes met his with a piercing glare, and a wave of heat suddenly swept over him.

Jin looked away, landing his gaze on her reflection on the car door window. Even with an angry face, she still looked so beautiful.

Jin smiled, tilting his head to the side to get a better look. I should stop this, he told himself, but it was too late. She was too interesting to be left alone.

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MY BOOK REVIEW:


This book was an interesting, intriguing, and suspenseful romantic read!

I found the main characters, Sakura and Jin interesting, however, I didn’t find them relatable or easy to connect with.  Usually, the books I read, I identify with a character or I find a character that reminds me of a close friend or family member.  Neither was the case with this book.

I liked that Sakura was strong, fierce, intelligent, sassy, and confident.  However, she was also very cold, rude, distant, and stuck up.  She presented herself in a manner that she was better than and more important than those around here.  This came off extremely harsh and frigid.  She preferred to be alone and kept herself isolated.  Later down the road we learn that this is all a shell; that she is protecting herself from being vulnerable and getting hurt.

I must admit, the best part of the book was her character’s journey of self-discovery.  Sakura is finding herself in this book and her transformation, learnings, and understandings were exponential!  I really enjoyed watching her grow - especially since I was so turned off by her at the beginning of the book!  But, watching her story unfold, her finally start to open up to possibilities and actually letting people in and get close to her – it showed strong character development!

I wasn’t fond of Jin either at the beginning as he was such a player and his ego barely fit through the door!  I liked that he knew and understood all these girls fawning over him were just after him for his money and status.  And I liked that he wanted a girl that wanted him for him and that she would be someone with virtue, character, and intellect.  Sakura was just that!  Sakura challenged Jin!  However, Jin was pleased to have found someone who wasn’t groveling at his feet – he didn’t understand why she wasn’t and he seemed to be getting annoyed that she wasn’t falling for all his lines and tricks.  Sorry, but that part was really dumb!!!  Jin finally finds what he’s been looking for and he has to complain that Sakura is making him work for it – which is what he wanted??!!  LOL!!!  Typical guys!!!

Anywho, after so many pages of that, he also does some growing up throughout the book and has some redeeming moments.  I really liked how supportive he was for Sakura and how he was there for her during some difficult scenes.

I really liked the story line concept and found it intriguing!  The author has fascinating ideas about the Yakuza’s, Japanese crime dynasties, and the elite heirs and their lifestyle!

The story line worked and there were definitely quite a few plot points to keep the story going – especially since it’s on the longer end of 328 pages.  However, this book felt a bit over-complicated and confusing at times as there was just so much going on in the story.  There were several passages I had to re-read to figure out what was happening and get back into the story.

I love the in-depth amount of research the author did while constructing this book.  It was clear she was very familiar and well-versed on Japanese culture, customs, and traditions.  The author provided so much detail and such vivid descriptions it made the scenes easy to picture.

There are some predictable scenes.  However, there are also some unexpected twists and turns and misdirection’s that you won’t see coming!

This book is book one in the Hanami Book Series.  This book can be read as a standalone.

Unfortunately, I felt the ending was a bit unfinished as there were still a few unanswered questions that I’m hoping book two will tie up some loose ends!

Also, please note there are some very detailed, graphic, violent scenes that may not be appropriate for all readers.

All in all, there were just a few hang-ups for me, but overall, I still enjoyed reading this book and would still recommend it.  There is an intriguing story line and great characters that do make this book an interesting romance, new adult, romantic suspense, and contemporary read!  So, add it to your TBR List and get to reading – you won’t be disappointed!

**Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book and have voluntarily provided an honest, and unbiased review in accordance with FTC regulations.**

Did you find this review helpful?
If so, please, please, please mark it as helpful on Amazon here:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/review/RTYS03DDCSGJV

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AUTHOR BIO:


V.C. Buckley was born in an isolated government facility and shipped off to an Island in Southeast Asia where she grew up braving tropical thunderstorms and warding off evil villains. At sixteen she was discovered by an agent and jetted off all over the world. Her stories come from gritty moments of her childhood to the glitz of her travels. She now lives in Manila with her husband, two kids and an herb garden that has hijacked her balcony.

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CONNECT WITH V.C.:

Website:

Blog:

Facebook:

Twitter:

Instagram:

BookBub Author Page:

BookBub Book Page – Hanami – Book One:

BookBub Book Page – Hazakura – Book Two:

Goodreads Author Page:

Goodreads Book Page – Hanami – Book One:

Goodreads Book Page – Hazakura – Book Two:

Amazon Author Page:

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BOOK BUY LINKS:


Amazon Kindle eBook:

Amazon Paperback:

Barnes and Noble NOOK eBook:

Barnes and Noble Paperback:

Kobo eBook #1:

Kobo eBook #2:

The Book Depository Paperback:

BAM! Books-A-Million Paperback:

BookBub Book Page:

Goodreads Book Page:

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Hazakura
Book Two
by V.C. Buckley

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GENRE: Romance, New Adult, Romantic Suspense, Contemporary

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BLURB:

Can love last for a mafia princess?

Find out in this riveting sequel to HANAMI...

KENJIN KIYOHARA, the son of Asia’s most powerful tycoon has finally won the heart of SAKURA SHINTANI, the heir to Japan’s most notorious crime dynasty. But their new love is threatened as Sakura’s trigger-happy opponents see Kenjin as her ultimate weakness, making her rethink the decision to be with him. But Kenjin is determined to stay by her side, even if it might cost him his life.

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MY BOOK REVIEW:


This book was an exciting, intriguing, suspenseful, sequel!

Honestly, I have to admit, I enjoyed this book more than the first book!

I really enjoyed catching back up with Sakura and Jin!  It was so great to see them still happily together!

This book was more enjoyable character-wise.  I think it was a combination of the main characters growth and having spent the time getting to know them from book one.  Sakura and Jin were much more personable, friendlier characters.  I actually cared about them, their journey, and their outcomes in the book.  I definitely felt a connection with the characters this time!  The character development was much stronger in this book!  Also, the supporting characters were very complementary and felt unique and important to the overall story line.

This book starts right out with an action scene and continues to keep the suspense level and build up throughout the story line.  There are several intriguing plot points that set this story up for an exciting teaser of mystery.

I think this book had more action scenes than book one and not as graphic either.  I felt more in suspense waiting to see what was going to happen next and trying to find out who hurt Uncle Ryuu.

In addition, this book focused more on the practical side of Sakura and Jin being together.  Now that the wooing was over, their relationship was being tested from all sides.  I think this is also what made the book more real and relatable.  We all have to deal with outside forces straining and testing the strength of our relationships – romantic and not.  Okay, so most of us don’t have to deal with a gigantic business family empire that is being handed down to us or having to run a notorious crime dynasty and all those trying to come in between them – we’re more dealing with work, friends, bills, enemies, etc. LOL!!!  It takes work to make it work and we all have to fight to hold on to those that we love and care about!!  Sakura and Jin are just finding that out and having to choose if they are going to put each other first or their family obligations.

Again, I loved the in-depth amount of research the author did while constructing this book.  It was clear she was very familiar and well-versed on Japanese culture, customs, and traditions.  The author provided so much detail and such vivid descriptions it made the scenes easy to picture.

There are some predictable scenes.  However, there are also some unexpected twists and turns and misdirection’s that you won’t see coming!

This book is book two in the Hanami Book Series.  This book can be read as a standalone.  However, there is significant character and plot line overlap.  I would strongly suggest starting with book one first.

All in all, I enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it!  I think all romance, new adult, romantic suspense, and contemporary readers will like this book too!  So, add it to your TBR List and get to reading - you won't be disappointed!

**Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book and have voluntarily provided an honest, and unbiased review in accordance with FTC regulations.**

Did you find this review helpful?
If so, please, please, please mark it as helpful on Amazon here:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/review/R2ZWMAMC1UMVSJ

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BOOK BUY LINKS:


Amazon Kindle eBook:

Amazon Paperback:

The Book Depository Paperback:

BAM! Books-A-Million Paperback:

BookBub Book Page:

Goodreads Book Page:

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GIVEAWAY INFO:

V.C. will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.


**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.

10 comments:

  1. V.C. ~ Good morning! Welcome back! It is so great to have you here again! Congrats on your new book series and good luck on the book tour! I really enjoyed reading and reviewing your books, thanks for providing the copies! :)

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  2. Another great book to discover. Thanks so much for sharing this with us.

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  3. Which character from the book do you most relate to?

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  4. I loved reading this post. I can't wait to read this book. I loved the tattoo on her back.

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  5. Thank you for sharing your review, this sounds great

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  6. Brianne's Book ReviewsNovember 17, 2019 at 9:47 AM

    A couple of great reviews of two marvellous books!

    ReplyDelete