Wednesday, October 8, 2014

LISA'S REVIEW: Washington Triplets (Danielle Allen, Michelle Lynn, Melissa Rolka)




Mya Washington is a rebel. Or at least,

that’s what her family has always said. As the youngest of a set of triplets,

she has always been the more rebellious of the three…even though she never

considered herself a rebel.

Outspoken? Yes.

Rule Breaker? Sometimes.

Trouble Maker? Nev—occasionally.

Growing tired of being typecast and

misunderstood, Mya moves to New York looking for a fresh start away from the

life she grew up in and out of the shadow of her older sisters.  Striking out on her own may have put a strain

on the family dynamic, but it's the new beginning Mya was looking for.

But after the unexpected death of her

mother, she is blindsided yet again by a wedding invitation she didn’t see

coming. Her father’s upcoming marriage only cements the wall she’s put up

around her heart. Because if her father could be such an utter disappointment,

why should she even attempt to open up to any man?

Enter Colton Davis.

What a great book. I really love Mya. I felt drawn to her on page one. She is strong and reminds me so much of my sister. I am a twin and I felt for her and her distance from her sisters. I know what a bond like that is. I really felt the pain. Then there is Colton!!! Oh, that man can have me anytime. I wanted to kick Mya when she walked away from him. What was she thinking. I found him to be one of the sexiest characters I have read about in a while. I loved his commitment and drive to Mya. WoW! I was so sad to see this end. It was over way too quickly. I love novellas but, I didn't want to see this end. I wanted to know what happens at the birthday and see more of Mya and Colton's love grow. What an amazingly beautiful story. I am excited to read the other books in this series. A great start and introduction into the Washington family!!!





the oldest Washington Triplet hasn’t been easy for Marisa Washington. Labeled

the “good one” at a young age embedded the burden she strived to build true.

She graduated at the top of her class, never caused her parents trouble, and

even settled down in their hometown of Chicago with her college boyfriend.

Her life was “perfect”, at least in the eyes of others. But when her mom

unexpectedly dies, Marisa’s eyes open for the first time. She leaves her

boyfriend of four years and takes a job in Alaska to gain the freedom and

individuality she’s craved. After all, what would she gain by sticking around

Chicago? She discovered her perfect family isn’t so perfect, and everyone she

cares for left her.

Starting a new life in Anchorage, Alaska, she’s unable to escape her family’s

hold when her dad’s wedding announcement comes a mere six months after her

mother’s death. Attempts to contact her sisters, in order to face this

together, are unsuccessful, leaving her feeling even more alone.

Her family issues have to be pushed aside when her employer sends her and three

others to a team building retreat in King’s Gate. It’s the last thing Marisa

wants to do, until everywhere she turns, she finds…Zach Greer.

Poor Marisa, I really felt for her. To have to deal with her dad and losing her mom, being the responsible one, and a abusive ex! She had so much to bring her down and I love that she was strong enough to try and build herself back up. I loved Zach. He was the perfect man to finish her healing process. I really love this romance. It is sweet and all consuming. Set is a beautiful state and a with great characters. This is such a great romance. It ended so soon. I hate that about it. I wanted so much more. Not just from Zach and Marisa but also the little hint at the end about Mya and Colton. You can read these a stand alones but, I suggest reading them together. You get the whole picture and a lot more love for the characters.




The Quiet One

Mikaela Washington,

the middle Triplet, has always been labeled the quiet one. Her parents claim

her as the introvert or just shy. Of course she was, what other role could she

take? All the others had been fulfilled.

Going away to

college with her sisters was always the plan until unforeseen circumstances

push Mikaela into a dark corner she can’t get out of. Her sisters think she’s

just being more unusual than normal and her dad barely notices. The only person

she can trust and confide in is her mom. 

She stays back and

lives at home with her parents. These years are difficult, but she manages to

find a career and go to therapy. During this time she learns her family home is

not what it seems. She sees and hears things that her sisters know nothing about.

Then when her mom suddenly dies she’s left to deal with not only her tragedy,

but also the secrets of her family. 

Finally Mikaela

realizes it’s time… time to move on, live on her own like her sisters and try

to start new. When she moves to California she finds the job of her dreams and

the man of her dreams attached to it… Ryan Chambers.

To read more about

the Washington Triplet's check out Love Discovered in New York and Love Grows

in Alaska.

WOW! After reading the first two books I was shocked at Mikaela's relationship status. I was even more shocked to hear about her relationship past. The poor girl had so much to overcome in this book. Her past and present were causing her trouble. I was so happy to see how supportive that Ryan was. I absoulutely love Ryan. He was just amazing. I love he made Mik his whole world. The love at first sight concept has been in each book and this one I really felt it. These three books are all beautiful and full of growth but, I do believe this one tops them all. This book is full of a beautiful love that grows strong and heals the heart. I love when Ryan confronts Eric! It is just perfect and I loved him so much more for it. I just wanted so much more from each book. I am so loving their HEA moments and how we get a little hint into each sisters future at the end of the book. I am in love with this series and you will be too!!!




To: Mom

From: Mya Washington

Subject: RE: Proud

I know you won’t ever get this, but I have so many emotions

swirling around in me today and I felt compelled to write you back.

It’s been a month and I’ve re-read your last email every day

since I’ve been back from the funeral. Every single day. And each day, I can

barely keep it together. Your words have kept me holding on while

simultaneously breaking my heart. I didn’t think it was possible for anyone to

understand me. I spent my entire life living with the black sheep stigma.

Whether it was coming from you, Dad, Marisa or Mikaela, I always had to hear

about how rebellious I was being. But when I opened your email and read that you

love me and you accept me for exactly who I am, I felt something I’d never felt


Mom, I feel like I’ve waited my whole life for you to say

those words to me. And as soon as I can wrap my mind around your acceptance,

you are taken away from me. I don’t understand. I don’t get it. I don’t know

why this happened. But I wish there was more time. I’m beating myself up every

day because I didn’t make time. I’m sorry I didn’t utilize the time we had. I

should’ve come home for Christmas. I should’ve visited Chicago more. I

should’ve visited you more.

I’m so sorry I never wrote you back. I meant to. I got your

email before my shift at work. I read it and I meant to call. It was late by

the time I got off, so I told myself I would call you the next day. And then

Kelsey called me in the morning to ask if I wanted to go shopping. So I put off

calling you. And when we got home from shopping, I got the call that changed my

life. And it was the first time my best friend—or anyone in New York for that

matter—had ever seen me cry.

So now, here I am. A month without you and I think I’m all

cried out. Tears don’t even form anymore because I’m so pissed. The anger I

feel is consuming me and I don’t know what to do about it. Dad had the audacity

to actually propose to some woman. He didn’t even care enough to run anything

by us. He actually just popped up with his engagement…right after we lost you!

He’s planning on gettingremarried. REMARRIED! Of all the disrespectful things

someone could do! You haven’t been gone hardly any time at all and here he is,

already moving on. I didn’t think he could stoop any lower. It’s one thing for

him to give me shit and be dismissive of me (particularly at your funeral), but

it’s a whole other thing for him to do this to you. You were always there for

him. You two were MARRIED for crying out loud! 

And then he proposes to someone he was obviously involved with WHILE YOU

TWO WERE STILL MARRIED! I can’t believe him! This is exactly why I won’t ever put

my trust in a man. This is exactly why I won’t ever get into a relationship.

This right here. Because if I can’t trust my own father to not be a complete

asshole, how can I trust any man?

I love you, Mom. I love you and I miss you. I love you and

I’m sorry. You mean the world to me. I know I didn’t say it enough. Or at all.

But I will make up for that by honoring you. And I won’t let anyone, ANYONE

disrespect your memory. I wasn’t there for you like I should’ve been when you

were alive, but I sure as hell will be here for you now.

Love Always



July 4, 2014

Oh, Mom. As hard as I try not to write directly to you in my

journal, my thoughts are constantly occupied with you. Although, I don’t cry

near as often these past weeks, I miss you more everyday. I know, crazy and

weird, right? You’d think as time went by that I’d forget the smell of your

perfume, or the sound of your voice would fade away. But it’s the opposite. I

give every woman wearing Chanel a second glance as they pass me by on the busy

street of Chicago on my way to and from work. A small part of me wishing it was

you. The other day, I swear I heard you calling me from across the L line while

I stood there on the platform for the noisy train to stop. If I’m truthful about

my hallucinations, you were waving to me from the window as the train past by.

Don’t worry Mom; I’m sane enough to know that didn’t happen. But I can’t say

I’ve wished that you faked your death more than one occasion, when I’m really

down. That I could see your happiness when I tell you something I think may make

you proud.

I left Nate. Yep … took the scissors and cut the string!

He’s gone and I can’t believe the weight that’s been lifted from me. That

nagging feeling of him being around and what might set off his vomit words

toward me. Making me more self-conscious about every decision I’ve ever made.

The guilt he gave me of being an identical triplet and how imperfect I am

compared to my sisters. Thank you for never insisting that I break-up with him.

I fear when you were still on Earth I would’ve purposely tried to prove you

wrong in some fashion. Those small comments here and there you gave me through

the years worked, and finally clinked together into one SCREW YOU NATE send


Now I find myself a little depressed. Chicago isn’t what it

used to be. Mya and Mikaela aren’t here. Most of my friends are busy with

either boyfriends, or their careers. I’m in a stalled pattern in the moment,

but I have a surprise! I made a decision today that will hopefully lift this

dark cloud from above me. I’m moving to Alaska!! I know, I know, so far away,

but I’m excited for the first time in months Mom. I can’t wait to see what’s up

there for me to discover.

Okay, I’m going to go Google some more about my new city!

You’re always in my thoughts! I love you … always!



Mikaela’s Diary

March 1, 2014

I think about you everyday, Mom.  The pain still cripples me at times, but I’m

trying so hard and it’s because of you. 

I’m remembering all the advice you gave me, some of it only a month

ago.  Now you’re not here to guide me and

it’s scary.

Today I was sitting staring out the big bay window in the

front room.  The snow and ice glistened

brightly off the braches of the old oak tree. 

It was almost blinding me, but I was captivated, lost in my

thoughts.  I’ve felt so alone in this

house since you’ve been gone.  Dad hasn’t

slept here since the funeral.  He doesn’t

think I know where he goes, but I do.  I

regret so much, Mom.  So, so much.  I should have told you about the things I

heard and saw while you were here.  I

hate that I kept quiet like I always do. 

Dad usually stops by daily, but we don’t really talk.  The hurt in his eyes is there though.  Before he leaves he always kisses my head,

tells me he loves me and then leaves me … alone. 

Something bad and something good happened recently and all

I’ve thought of is how bad I wish you were here to help and guide me, but

you’re not and it’s forcing me to branch out. 

The bad is that I saw him the

other day.  I still can’t tell you who he

is, but he was here.  I saw him as I was

staring out the bay window.  My body

froze as soon as I saw his dark hair peeking over the hood of his car and as he

got out I knew without a doubt it was him. 

I ducked, literally hid below the window, peering my eyes out just

enough to see.  He ran up the steps to

his old home and that was it.  Even

though I hyperventilated, panicked and became paralyzed with the pain and

memories something changed for me.

This is where my good news comes in… I realize that I need

to make things happen for myself.  It’s

time to spread my wings a little more. 

Things you’ve been telling me this for years now.  Mom, I did something you would be so proud

of.  I applied for a job in

California.  Guess what?  I have my first interview next week!  The owner even called me to conduct a phone

interview.  He loved my portfolio.  I felt like I was bragging about myself, but

this is the one area in my life I’m confident about.  I think I’m ready for a change.  I’m using my own money to go out for this

interview, but he said if he brings me back for a second the company pays for

it.  It’s a bit of a risk, but damn it,

I’m ready to take it!

I’m excited.  Really

excited, Mom!  I know you may be shaking

your finger at me from up above, but I’m not avoiding my problems… I’m making a

decision to move forward just like you’ve told me for years.  It’s time for me to do something that makes

me happy.  I promise if I do move to

California I’ll find a therapist right away.

Even though this is a big step and it’s exciting… all I can

do is think of you.  I wish you were

coming out with me for the interview. 

Hearing you whisper words of encouragement is what I’ll need. 

I love and miss you everyday, Mom.






am a married event planner, life coach and instructor.  Between my awesome friends and family and my

amazing husband, I am constantly surrounded by love.  My goal at all times is to love what I’m

doing and enjoy life.  I love shopping

and football with equal fervor.  I’m an

amateur movie critic (i.e. my husband and I watch and critique a lot of movies

for fun). I love to read, but since I’ve been writing, I don’t read as much as

I used to. I love music. A good lyric with a good melody can paint a vivid

picture and invoke such a range of emotions. I have a soft spot for most

mediums of creative, artistic expression. But music is probably my favorite.





moved around the Midwest most of her life, transferring from school to school

before settling down in the outskirts of Chicago ten years ago, where she now

resides with her husband and two kids. 

She developed a love of reading at a young age, which helped lay the

foundation for her passion to write.  

With the encouragement of her family, she finally sat down and wrote one

of the many stories that have been floating around in her head. When she isn’t

reading or writing, she can be found playing with her kids, talking to her mom

on the phone, or hanging out with her family and friends.  But after chasing around twin preschoolers

all day, she always cherishes her relaxation time after putting the kids to





Rolka grew up in the Chicagoland area all of her childhood and has always had a

love of writing. She started by keeping a journal at a young age and in high

school she started writing poetry. A couple poems were published anonymously.

Then in college she majored in Philosophy, which required lots and lots of

writing. After graduating from Marquette University she traveled west to Los

Angeles. There she worked for the Writers Guild of America and found herself

submerged in the writers world. She worked on small writings, but never pursued

them. On the side she became involved with a small theater group. Eventually

she made her way back to the Midwest, where her heart belongs, and worked in

business for several years. She found love, got married and has two beautiful

children. Being at home has allowed her to keep following her love of reading

and writing. The Perfect Distraction (The Perfect Series) is her first

full-length novel. When Melissa is not writing she is caring for, playing with

and loving her two kids. In between taking care of her family and writing she

almost always has her nose buried in her Kindle.




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