Category Archives: Karina Halle

LOVE, IN SPANISH (A Love, In English Sequel #2) by KARINA HALLE

love, in spanish


SYNOPSIS

The companion to the highly emotional, scandalous and USA Today Bestselling love story – LOVE, IN ENGLISH – is finally here! Love, in Spanish is a Love, in English follow-up novel told from Mateo Casalles’ POV. While Love, in Spanish touches on some events that happened in LIE (you know the ones!) it is a whole new story set a year later that continues with Vera and Mateo’s “happily ever after.” Note: It should be read after Love, in English and it is mostly new material (aka not just rehash of LIE). 

*** 

“She sat beside me on the bus – and she changed my whole life.” 

Successful, wealthy and absurdly handsome – Spanish ex-football player Mateo Casalles seemed like he had it all. A high-society wife, an adorable little girl, and flashy apartments in Madrid and Barcelona only sweetened the deal. But there was more to Mateo than met the eye – a life of uncertainty and regret that colored his black and white world. 

That was until Vera Miles came into his life like a shooting star. Tattooed, wild and young, Vera seemed like Mateo’s polar opposite at first. But you can’t choose who you fall in love with and the two lost souls did everything they could to be together, all while suffering the grave consequences. 

Now with Mateo divorced and living in Madrid with Vera, there is a whole new set of challenges and setbacks facing the couple and rocking the foundation of their star-crossed relationship. 

Unfortunately for them, the brighter the star, the faster they burn. 

  ♥  ♥ 

Love, in Spanish (1)

 Reviewed by Jenny & Gitte

J&G: ✯✯✯ 1/2 Stars

G&J: We were giddy with excitement to hear Mateo’s voice- his thoughts and feel his emotions first hand. Experience his strength of love for Vera; his inner turmoil and demons over what transpired and led to where we ended up in Love, in English. We have to applaud Karina Halle for not repeating a story through the male POV. What we cleverly got was an insight into Mateo from Love, in English whilst being in a whole new story, and for that – bravo Karina Halle. His voice was passionate, eloquent and at times it reduced us to tears.

‘You brought me colours and stars and cosmos and wonders. I wanted you so badly, craved you so much, that I knew I would suffer whatever bad things would come my way…’

Once again we enjoyed her beautiful writing style and the emotion laden words. We started off feeling completely immersed in this beautiful romance yet again. A romance we wholeheartedly believed in and celebrated for its purity and complimentary differences. A romance with trust, honesty, maturity and respect.

‘You don’t keep your eyes on the ground once you’ve seen the beauty of the stars.’

Sadly towards the middle point, we began to find the story somewhat repetitive and found the tension and drama hard to rationalise and understand.  It felt like much was created for the sake of it, not because it added anything to the story, thus it became superfluous and in our opinion hurt the characters.

‘Everything weighs so heavy right now, I can feel it pressing down on my shoulders. There is Vera, and then there is loneliness. Sometimes I have both but now it only feels like I have the latter.’

This resulted in us feeling like the enthralling and beautiful romance; the beautiful souls of Mateo and Vera from Love, in English were compromised and acted out of character.

“I’m just tired of the universe giving me something and taking something away.”

The poignant and heart-warming importance in book one was placed upon the irrelevance in their ages, appearance and the pressure of the societal perceptions placed upon them. None of these were an issue for them in regard to their mutual love and affection.  Now, this beautiful notion was made into something ugly between them and entered the beautiful sanctity of their own relationship. Hurtful, spiteful and questionable actions and words thrown out into the open which negated what was so incredibly beautiful and awe inspiring in book one. This coming particularly from Vera; a character we loved with all our hearts hence our sadness in feeling like this; us actually questioning her love and maturity.

“You’re breaking me. And I’m already broken.”

In some respects part of the story felt implausible when comparing the characters behaviour in book one and how they fought so hard to listen and act upon the emotions and their hearts.  We believed so wholeheartedly in the characters of Vera and Mateo; their spirit, love and fighting strength which led us to question this shift in character that showed cracks and spite which we just couldn’t believe; didn’t want to believe.

‘Maybe it’s okay if the world is boiled down to just Vera and I.  As long as we don’t let go of one another, as long as we can work together, as long as the rest of the world, one day, promises to catch up.

Love, in English is one of our favourite books this year so it really hurts to say that whilst we enjoyed this one; we just couldn’t love it as much and we have to wonder whether much of this story was necessary. All the passion was contained within a single letter. A letter that told a whole story by itself. A letter we will never forget which had our hearts bleeding and rejoicing in the power of romance. Karina Halle is without question an amazing story teller which is why we did end up enjoying Love, in Spanish.

**Reviewed from an ARC copy kindly provided by the author with thanks**

  ♥  ♥ 

Purchase your copies of the LOVE, IN ENGLISH SERIES here

LIE Series Collage

LOVE, IN ENGLISH
(Our Review)
AMAZON US || AMAZON UK || AMAZON AU

LOVE, IN SPANISH
AMAZON US || AMAZON UK || AMAZON AU



 

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Filed under 3.5 Stars, Karina Halle, Our Reviewers, Pick an Author, Reviews by Gitte, Reviews by Jenny

DIRTY ANGELS (Dirty Angels #1) by KARINA HALLE

DIRTY ANGELS SERIES by KARINA HALLE

purchase book

Dirty Angels :  Amazon US  and  Amazon UK
Dirty Deeds :   Amazon US and Amazon UK
Dirty Promises : Amazon US and Amazon UK


dirty

SYNOPSIS

**Warning: this book contains situations which might be triggers for some people. Please see the bottom of this description to see if this is the kind of book that you’ll love or piss you off**

For Luisa Chavez, a twenty-three year old former beauty queen, a better life has always been just out of her reach. Sure, she’s had men at her feet since she was a young teenager but she’s never had the one thing she’s craved – security. Having grown up in near poverty, her waitressing job in Cabo San Lucas can barely let her take care of herself, let alone her ailing parents. Every day is another unwanted advance, every day is a struggle to survive.

When Salvador Reyes, the depraved leader of a major Mexican cartel, takes an interest in her, Luisa is presented with an opportunity she can’t afford to pass up. She’ll become Salvador’s wife and exchange her freedom and body for a life of riches – riches she can bestow upon her deserving parents. But Luisa quickly finds out that even the finest wines and jewels can’t undo the ugliness in her marriage, nor the never-ending violence that threatens her every move.

Soon, Luisa is looking for an escape, a way out of the carefully controlled life she’s leading. She finally gets her wish in the worst way possible.

As it is, being the wife of Salvador makes her an ideal target for rival cartels and there’s one particular man who needs Luisa as part of his cartel’s expansion. One particular man whose quest for power has destroyed lives, slit throats and gotten him out of an American prison. One particular man who will stop at nothing until he gets what he wants.

That man is Javier Bernal. And he wants Luisa. He wants to take her, keep her, ruin her.

Unless she ruins him first.

***WARNING*** This book deals with drug cartels and as such it contains a lot of sex and violence and some violent sex. It can get pretty ugly, pretty dark and pretty crazy. There is drug use, abuse, a bit of torture and dubious consent. The hero is not a hero and the villains…well, they’re even worse. If this sort of thing bothers you, PLEASE DO NOT READ IT. This ain’t no cupcake farting unicorn kind of book. If you are even a bit squeamish about violence, brutality and rape, this is your warning to stay away from a book that you certainly will not like (and why read books that you know you won’t like?)***

***While this is a spin-off of The Artists Trilogy, prior knowledge of the books is not needed. DIRTY ANGELS is the first in a trilogy, however each book can standalone and follows or introduces different characters**


*****

Dirty Angels

Reviewed by Jenny & Gitte

J&G : 4.5 Stars

‘Love didn’t build empires – it ruined them.’

Gitte: Don’t know about you, Jenny, I love Karina Halle’s writing and I really enjoyed Dirty Angels, it was flawless in its execution. The characters were intriguing and the storyline had me hooked.     

“You must feel your soul is dirty then.”
“Oh, my darling. No, I don’t even have a soul.”

It was dark, gritty, filthy and violent. It’s definitely not for the faint- hearted but then again, that’s what had us gagging to read it wasn’t it? I actually felt as if I was there, the sights, the smells, the aggression and the passion. It was all there and I was right in the centre of it watching as the story played out.

Jenny:  I certainly did love it G! I was eager to delve into this gritty, suspenseful, dark read by Karina Halle and meet the mysterious Javier. The synopsis wowed me and I knew I was in for a treat when my stomach is in knots at the prologue. Karina Halle certainly does have a talent for bringing her stories so vividly to life and this was no exception. It’s official…I’m addicted to this authors work!

“You sound happy.”
“You have no idea what happy likes like.”

Every gut churning, passionate, erotic and raw moment of this story was certainly experienced as if you were witnessing it first-hand. There were a couple of heart stopping moments that’s for sure!

Gitte: The character of Javier Bernal absolutely fascinated me, he was so intense, brutal, fucked up yet so bloody charming and addicting. I actually wish we hadn’t been told Dirty Angels could be read as a standalone and had read The Artist Trilogy first because his back story became an integral factor and in some respects the lack of it counteracted the emotion and understanding. I needed and wanted to know more! You agree don’t you, Jenny?

“Why do you want to break me so badly?”
“Because I want to destroy beautiful things before they can destroy me.”

Javier really was a narcissistic anti-hero, the lesser of the two evils, a man who found a way into your heart. Also, Dirty Angels is as unconventional as we can get for a love-story.

‘This was what I’d wanted to see….a glimpse of the boy behind the man and the man behind the monster.’

But…I fell in love….how could I not? Javier was one sexy knife wielding bastard wasn’t he?

Jenny:  Oh I agree Gitte but first up, let me repeat his name…..Javier Bernal. Just the name send shivers down your spine. This ruggedly handsome, slightly psychotic, brutal, powerful and rousing man had me at hola. What is it about these dangerous and sexy men that have us falling at their feet? Stupid question! Javier was such an enigma and had me fixated throughout.

‘Real power comes in giving a woman pleasure. Real control is knowing you’ve taken that woman to another place, another plane of existence, and you’re the one who holds the key.’

This man could be such a ruthless ruler one minute, a passionate sex god the next yet have me giggling at his sarcastic and caustic wit a second later. He was definitely an anti-hero I fell head over heels for.

‘The saying goes, if you love something, let it go. I always thought it was better to just shoot the damn thing so they’d never go anywhere.’

I wholeheartedly agree with you about wishing I had read The Artists Trilogy before venturing into Devil’s Angels because I felt as if we only gleamed part of Javier’s story. I desperately needed to know more than the morsels we were afforded and felt disadvantaged, as if I was missing integral parts of Javier’s story preventing me form exploring the core of who Javier Bernal was and what brought him to that moment.

Gitte: Well, what can I say about Luisa Chavez, her behaviour and rationalising baffled me. I think where I struggled with this story was with her action that acted as the catalyst for the whole book. I didn’t understand it, I didn’t fully get it. Were things really that bad that the lengths to which she went was the only way out? Or was it just a case of, well it’s the quickest way to get what I want, sod the consequences, I’ll play martyr? I wasn’t convinced of this, didn’t think it was explored enough, so yeah I struggled a bit in the beginning with her.

“You are my enigma…But I never leave anything unsolved.”

Don’t get me wrong she’s an incredible character otherwise. She’s strong, her survival instinct was bang on despite the extremely hopeless situation. No matter how gruesome or ‘filthy’ her life gets, she has this angelic aura to her which came across strongly through Karina Halle’s writing.

Jenny: I agree Gitte. I did find it hard to connect with Luisa at the start of the story and I too couldn’t completely comprehend her way of thinking. It did feel as if her decision was made on the fly as a quick way out and I didn’t feel her needs at that time warranted the situation she eventually put herself in.

However, as the story progressed, the strength of this woman, her pure conviction in herself and the treatment she was forced to endure made me appreciate the growth of her character, I warmed to her by the end and did eventually respect her greatly.

“I will break you.”
“Then do your worst. And you will see that the worst has already been done.”

A strong, tenacious and beautiful woman with a vulnerability that captivated and awed Javier.

J&G Karina Halle did it again. She delivered a well written, expressive, shocking, suspenseful, erotic and riveting story we couldn’t put down.

“I’m no angel.”
“No, you’re a queen.”

We loved this book and can understand all the 5 star reviews because they are absolutely warranted.Whilst this book is a spin-off of The Artist Trilogy series and as such, it is being marketed as a standalone, we felt as though we had missed out on an integral part of the story, as if a piece of the puzzle was missing. Our immense desire to know more about Javier’s background left us with many questions which we look forward to uncovering when we do venture into the Artist Trilogy series, however as this was a standalone we could only gleam the information provided within.  It is for this reason it just fell short of the 5 stars for us. Dirty Angels is an absolute must read if you love your antiheroes, love a good knuckle biting story with plenty of filthy heat thrown in. A real winner for us! We really do need more Javier!

**ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review**

Purchase DIRTY ANGELS here 
AMAZON US / AMAZON UK
AMAZON AU / AMAZON CA 

dirty

DIRTY DEEDS (Dirty Angels #2) coming in 2014

dirty deeds

 DIRTY PROMISES (Dirty Angels #3) to come 

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Filed under 4.5 Stars, Karina Halle, Our Reviewers, Pick an Author, Reviews by Gitte, Reviews by Jenny

LOVE, IN ENGLISH by KARINA HALLE


love, in english

 

SYNOPSIS

He’s thirty-eight. I’m twenty-three

He speaks Spanish. I speak English.

He lives in Spain. I live in Canada.

He dresses in thousand-dollar suits. I’m covered in tattoos.

He’s married and has a five-year old daughter.

I’m single and can’t commit to anyone or anything.

Until now.Because when they say you can’t choose who you fall in love with, boy ain’t that the f*#king truth.

***

To a restless dreamer like Vera Miles, it sounded like the experience of a lifetime. Instead of spending her summer interning for her astronomy major, she would fly to Spain where she’d spend a few weeks teaching conversational English to businessmen and women, all while enjoying free room and board at an isolated resort. But while Vera expected to get a tan, meet new people and stuff herself with wine and paella, she never expected to fall in love.

Mateo Casalles is unlike anyone Vera has ever known, let alone anyone she’s usually attracted to. While Vera is a pierced and tatted free spirit with a love for music and freedom, Mateo is a successful businessman from Madrid, all sharp suits and cocky Latino charm. Yet, as the weeks go on, the two grow increasingly close and their relationship changes from purely platonic to something…more.

Something that makes Vera feel alive for the first time.

Something that can never, ever be.

Or so she thinks

´♥ ´♥ ´♥

love in english collage

Reviewed by Jenny & Gitte

Jenny & Gitte: 5 Absolutamente hermoso Stars!

 “Try not to fall in love with anyone….”

Love, in English was quite simply stunning; visually and the perfection with which it was written. An emotionally raw portrayal of love born under adversity and how this love can quite simply be written in the stars. It was our first Karina Halle and we experienced such beauty that this will most definitely not be our last. In our hearts and in our minds all our senses were evoked; we lived and breathed everything Spanish – everything love. The scent and taste; the heat and the passion. It was all there.

“You and I, we were always a memory in the making.” – Mateo

We can’t put into words how much this story gutted us and pulled at our every emotion as it made our hearts cry, then hopeful, bleed and then rejoice in the purity of love and the belief that yes, soul mates do exist and under the guidance of the stars courage and love will prevail. No matter what the obstacles may be.

“Promise me, you won’t give up on us.” – Mateo

Love, in English is incredibly powerful; the emotions that bleed off the pages straight from this Author’s fingers are incredibly intense. We didn’t merely read this story, we lived it – we breathed it. Upon finishing we felt as if we’d lived a lifetime such was the extent of our exhausted emotions and stress from Vera & Mateo’s story. A story so unique, so refreshing, so believable and so passionate. Bravo, Karina Halle we are in awe of you and will never forget this journey you took us on.

In and rut and disenchanted with her life,  23 year old Vera Miles takes off to Spain for a few weeks to teach conversational English to a group of business men and women. Vera instantly falls in love with Spain and feels a sense of belonging . There she meets 38 year old businessman Mateo Casalles, married man and devoted father to his daughter Chloe. What begins as a friendship and flirting soon intensifies as Mateo begins to break down Vera’s emotional walls and their hearts become involved.   Mateo and Vera are drawn to one another and experience a connection neither thought possible. As their feelings heighten and the course draws to a close, each must face the bleak prospect of returning to their lives without each other.

“There will be nights where you will feel alone and lost…..Where I will feel alone and lost. When that happens, I want us both to remember this, right now. Bring our thoughts back to this room, this moment. Where we aren’t lonely. Where we are both found.” – Mateo
“I hope it will be enough.” – Vera
“It will never be enough.” – Mateo 

Vera, beautiful lost and lonely Vera. She found her way into our hearts as she battled with her emotions and for what was the right thing to do. Which path to take.

“I’d never be loved and no one would ever want my love in return.” – Vera

Mateo, we fell in love with this passionate, possessive and mature man who had an incredible heart and a sensuality that left us breathless.

“Love is like a thief, it robs you of all thought and logic and all you have left is a heart that you can only pray is strong enough to survive the rest.” – Mateo

Love, In English quite simply spoke to our hearts and fed the romantic in both of us, it fulfilled our wanderlust and the passion of Vera and Mateo’s journey consumed and enthralled us.

Love knows not distance; it hath no continent; its eyes are for the stars – Gilbert Parker

**ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review**

Purchase your copies of the LOVE, IN ENGLISH SERIES here

LIE Series Collage

LOVE, IN ENGLISH
AMAZON US || AMAZON UK || AMAZON AU

LOVE, IN SPANISH
AMAZON US || AMAZON UK || AMAZON AU

 

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Filed under 5 Stars, Karina Halle, Our Reviewers, Pick an Author, Reviews by Gitte, Reviews by Jenny