Spoiler Free Review: The Soulmate Equation by Christina Lauren

55692620Title: The Soulmate Equation

Author: Christina Lauren

Pub. Date: May 18th 2021

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Format: eGalley

Publisher: Gallery Books

Pages: 368 pages





🖤eGalley provided by Publisher in exchange for an honest review, all quotes come from an advance copy and may not match the final release🖤The 411..

Single mom Jess Davis is a statistician convinced that the dating scene is just not for her. She’s felt abandoned way too many times and doesn’t want to put her daughter through that again. Jess and her BFF Fizzy hear about GeneticAlly a match making company that is in its early stages of testing. Finding a soulmate through DNA sounds far fetched and she thinks her odds are low. That is until she matches at 98% with one of the app developers!!! 😮 the same guy who walks into the coffee shop every day with ZERO social skills. The guy who is hot AF but is always on the go to even consider his surroundings. Sort of hate-to-love if you can actually hate someone you don’t really know? Think more along the lines of modern day heartwarming tale on the lower end of the steam scale between two individuals who would make quite the odd pairing if you’re only matching by personality. Jess is super relatable as a single mom who is struggling financially to make ends meet even though she’s quite good at what she does for a living. She also happens to have a strong support system between her grandparents and best friend. Jess isn’t fully convinced that GeneticAlly is accurate, she entertains it with skepticism, intrigue, and sarcasm all at once. Dr. River Pena has invested everything into GeneticAlly, it’s basically his baby and although he also doesn’t believe he could’ve matched correctly with Jess…in order to protect the integrity of his research, he has to be willing to date her.


I didn’t really go into this expecting a steamy romance, my hopes were that I’d walk away with a new favorite Rom-Com and I feel that’s exactly what I got. Besides the developing romance, we get to see a positive f/f friendship where the BFF is more like family. I ADORED Fizzy! a romance writer who has even written a character based off of Jess and honestly every time she threatened to kill her off, I giggled thinking of my own best friend. I would absolutely read a spin-off based on Fizzy’s own escapades which we get a slight glimpse to in this book. Even seven year old Juno was fun to get to know on the page, she’s got such an inquisitive mind and loves the library. Our love interest is just about the only aspect I wish was a bit more fleshed out. We get to know him through his research but it isn’t until the last quarter of the book where we get to see some of his personal life influences like his family. This is also where we learn he’s Latinx which tbh, I would’ve loved to have learned from the very beginning. A more balanced approach towards the main characters is something I find helps me get more invested in their lives. That being said, my heart melted every time Dr. River Pena interacted with little Juno! his respect for women and just his whole love language was *chefs Kiss* perfection!

The Soulmate Equation hits shelves next week Tuesday May 18th


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Spoiler Free Review: City Of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty

Title: City Of Brass (The Daevabad Trilogy #1)

Author: S.A. Chakraborty

Pub. Date: November 14th 2017

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Format: Physical book

Publisher: Harper Voyager

Pages: 533 Pages


City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty is one of the books I’ve had on my list of Must Read Fantasy Books for way too long! in this book we meet Nahri who is a con woman in the streets of Cairo. Nahri knows her way around & makes a living using sleight of hand, whether it’s palm readings, zars (ceremony where Nahri is hired to sort of exorcise a demon who has taken possession of a person), or healings she takes the opportunity to swindle the nobility of Cairo. This all changes when she manages to conjure up a Djinn Warrior who is just as cunning as she is. Dara is bound to Nahri in ways she doesn’t yet understand at the start of her journey. Dara tells Nahri of Daevabad, a magical land home to the City of Brass. Dara tells Nahri of the magic that runs in her blood as a Shafit (mixed Djinn\human) & that she belongs in Daevabad where she will be safer than in Cairo’s streets. Nahri is curious enough to want to find out if the magic she’s only heard of in stories actually exists. Their journey to Daevabad comes with many challenges & attacks. We also get to learn a lot of history as it relates to the 6 Djinn tribes. What Nahri doesn’t expect is that a lot of old tensions are still brewing & she’s walking right into a culminating rebellion beneath the surface. We get court politics, Nahri training with her new found magical abilities, and oppression. At the very heart of this book is the story of a people who are being oppressed by the nobility for having mixed blood with humans. There’s an outright decrees to stifle their uprising by any means necessary which leads to the loss of lives.

It’s my goal to always read diversely and it makes my heart feel whole when I see a cast of characters in a Fantasy that are for the mostly all people of color. In City Of Brass we get a diverse cast of characters from different socioeconomic backgrounds. There are no purely good/evil characters in this story. Everyone has an agenda & even those looking out for the interest of the under privileged will cross lines for the greater good. I’d like to say that I connected with any of these characters but I didn’t & I’m a reader who loves character driven stories. For this reason alone I docked it a star however, the world building inspired by Middle Eastern Folklore is truly captivating. As we journey through this land we meet many other species from all elements (Earth, Wind, Air and Fire) which all make for a lush world with a complex history.

Nahri as an MC is very unsure of herself & the pressure placed upon her is a bit much. Getting to know who is friend or foe will be her best bet. I did enjoy seeing her character growth when she realizes that her street learned skills are exactly what she’ll need to survive in the City of Brass. Dara is a complex character & I was split down the middle on my feelings for him. On the one hand he has such a messed up past of enslavement & loss that my heart really wants to root for him. On the other, there’s no denying our fierce Djiin warrior has some serious prejudices against the Shafit or anyone who isn’t Djinn. A lot of this is instilled in him through History & the believe that procreating with humans is sacrilegious. Muntadhir is second born son to the king, his role is to protect his brother who is next in line for the throne. Muntadhir is a trained fighter & very devout, out of all the characters he’s the one with a strong conscious. For Muntadhir it is about right vs. wrong no matter what side of the fence he is on. Out of everyone in this book, Muntadhir has to be my favorite character. He’s trying so hard to hold on to his beliefs & is being met with many tests along the way. It’ll be interesting to see his character’s journey in the next book.

This review is long enough smh so I’ll keep this short & sweet, I absolutely LOVED S.A. Chakraborty’s world building! It never once felt info dumpey, instead the history of the six Djiin Tribes is delivered in creative ways that really come to life. I also am a sucker for elemental magic & seeing that weaved into the different species was a plus. The character development was on point as was the world building which heightens my interest in getting to the next book very soon. The build-up of tensions between the oppressed and the nobility is very well done as are the attacks executed by the rebels. I honestly felt like I was watching pieces on a chess board move, wondering what was going to happen next. I do hope we get more of Nahri’s own abilities in the next book since here we only see the beginning stages of her tapping into them. I also have questions I hope get answered & hope that one of my theories on her lineage come into actualization *fingers crossed* on that one! the hype was well deserved <3’s!


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Waiting On Wednesday

ramona-blueRamona Blue

Published by: Balzer + Bray

Date of Publication: May 9th 2017

Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, LGBTQ 🏳️‍🌈 

Pages: 491




Goodreads Synopsis (2).jpg

For fans of Rainbow Rowell and Morgan Matson comes this sharp and thought-provoking novel about modern love, family, and the labels that we just can’t seem to escape—from Julie Murphy, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dumplin’ and Side Effects May Vary.

Ramona was only five years old when Hurricane Katrina changed her life forever. Since then, it’s been Ramona and her family against the world. One of only two out lesbians in her small town and standing over six feet tall with unmistakable blue hair, Ramona knows she’s destined for something bigger than the trailer she calls home in Eulogy, Mississippi. But juggling multiple jobs, her flaky mom, and her well-meaning but ineffectual dad forces her to be the responsible adult of the family. Now, with her sister, Hattie, pregnant, her responsibilities weigh more heavily than ever.

The return of her childhood friend Freddie brings a welcome distraction. Ramona’s friendship with the former competitive swimmer picks up exactly where it left off, and soon he’s talked her into joining him for laps at the pool.

As Ramona falls more in love with swimming, her feelings for Freddie begin to shift as well, and she must decide if knowing who she is is more important than figuring out who she might become.


I am currently reading & loving Julie Murphy’s Dumplin’ (Dumplin’ #1)  on a whim really after leaving the book I was currently reading at home. I have a 1.5 hour commute to & from work, and not having a book on hand was just unacceptable lol. I started Dumplin’ & immediately got sucked into this small town girls story, personality, and inner monologue. I got curious and opened up my Goodreads to see if Julie Murphy has any other books & found 2 things: Dumplin’ is a series (almost positive it was originally a standalone) + a new book set for 2017 titled Ramona Blue. That cover immediately caught my interest & then I read the synopsis (cuz let’s face it, it’s usually in that order LOL). This story has LGBTQ characters but what stands out for me is that the protog is introduced as one of only two lesbians in her small town who then falls for her childhood friend who happens to be male. I’m curious to see how bi-sexuality is handled by Murphy…the original blurb I believe, had mentioned something along the lines of not being put in a box by labels. The blurb has since changed & I see that there seems to be a bit of controversy on Goodreads as well as rating the book 1 star before it’s been published or made its rounds for anyone to see. I also see the book getting 5 stars by readers who are trying to negate the low ratings because they find this to be unjust to the authors yet unpublished work. I don’t agree with either of these methods. Considering that Murphy is handling body image in Dumplin’ so well, I think i’ll give this one a shot & formulate/provide my own informed opinion/review/rating 😉