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The Girl in a Cafe

Loving Books Since Before It Was Cool! All reviews can also be found on my main blog!

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Bram Stoker
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Justine Larbalestier, Sarah Rees Brennan
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Mindy McGinnis
Breaking the Reins - Juliana Haygert There are a few certain keywords that make me instantly pick up a book, and horses is one of them. Ever since I read my first Pony Pals book when I was seven or eight, I've been in love with horses. Sadly, I had to choose between learning to ride or ballet lessons, and I chose ballet lessons. But anyway. Enough of my sob story and my dashed dreams for becoming to youngest Australian to win Gold in the three day eventing at the Olympics.Combine that fact that when you know it's a New Adult romance, which means hot men and steamy action. And horses. So naturally, when I saw Juliana's Pinterest board for Breaking The Reins, I was pretty much like this:Breaking the Reins broke through the reading slump I'd been going through where New Adult contemporary was concerned. What I loved most about this story was that it wasn't all just about two people getting together and getting it on; or, like other New Adult novels, walking on tiptoes around each other until they finally give in, and then the rest of the book is just blatant sex.Instead, Breaking the Reins takes the age old approach of sexual tension and frustration, a la Pride and Prejudice style. What made this book special was the way Haygert was able to capture the intensity of the romance between the two leads with looks, glances and simple touches; rather than hot and heavy words and actions. This felt like what New Adult contemporary should be. Breaking the Reins is about Hannah Taylor, whose life is seemingly perfect to the people around her. Her family's minted, she's poised to take over the Taylor equestrian empire, and her boyfriend is a world ranked polo player. The problem is, the life Hannah has, Hannah doesn't want (also, I shall mention now that she has the coolest name in the world. THE WORLD.)I found myself liking Hannah as a character a lot. While at times she was incredibly weak and I just wanted to give her a shove and a what for, but the way she justified her situation and why she was with her dick of a boyfriend turned me into a helpless puppy. Though her excuses were numerous, they were also valid. And one thing about Eric was that even though Hannah had a crush on him since before they started dating, you could see that, for both of them, there was an underlying tone of love somewhere within their horrendous relationship.Which brings me to Eric. Selfish, egotistical Eric, who I just wanted to stab with one of those polo club things and give him a swift kick in the balls. But at the same time, I couldn't help but feel just a tiny bit sorry for him. After all, this was a boy who probably would have turned out a lot different if there'd been some changes in his growing up. Behaviour like that doesn't just happen, it stems and grows from a particular reason. I don't believe that people are just evil because; or that they are born so. Something has had to happen to lead them down that path, whatever it be. Still, there is no excuse for violence, and there never ever should be. Though I think Eric should have had more of a comeuppance, but that probably would have dragged the book on too long. But when it did happen, boy was I ever glad. I was seriously worried for a while I wouldn't be getting my HEA!Enter Leo. Mmmm, Leo. There's nothing sexier than a guy who speaks a different language to you. And Leo was no expection to the rule. Usually, I don't like instant attraction, but I definitely agreed with it here. Maybe it's like Hannah says throughout the book, that her attraction to Leo was purely based on the way her relationship with not just Eric, but her family, was going. Whatever it was, it was sexy as hell, and I loved the way that Leo didn't hide his feelings for Hannah either. Sure, at times he was blunt, but better to be straight to the point and let her know rather than have her hanging on and all sorts of mis-communication go on.Overall, as you can see, I loved this book. All my favourite elements combined and Juliana did not disappoint at all. I was a little wary, I must confess. There's such a big build up you create over a book, that when it doesn't live up to it's expectations, you do feel a bit let down. But it wasn't the case here, and I know, now having read three books but Juliana, that I'll continue to love her work.This is definitely one for all of us who've always wanted a knight in shining armour, dressed however he may be. Also, if you're rather bored of all the smut that's been floating around recently in New Adult contemporary world, I can't say it enough. Read this one!!