Book Reviews · Releases & Reveals

Review Tour: ‘Lies & Lullabies’ by Sarina Bowen

LIES & LULLABIES by Sarina Bowen is NOW LIVE!!

Book InfoLIES & LULLABIES by Sarina Bowen
Series: Hush Note #1
Release Date: September 22nd, 2020


Summer nights and star-crossed lovers! From USA Today bestselling author Sarina Bowen.

Once upon a time, he gave me a summer of friendship, followed by one perfect night. We shared a lot during our short time together. But he skipped a few crucial details.

I didn’t know he was a rock star.

I didn’t know his real name.

Neither of us knew I’d get pregnant.

And I sure never expected to see him again.

Five years later, his tour bus pulls up in Nest Lake, Maine. My little world is about to be shattered by loud music and the pounding of my own foolish heart.


3.5 ‘My only Sweetness’ Stars!

ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

A sugary sweet start to the Hush Note series! I’ve been waiting for these books ever since I saw the authors announced it in social media. Yes, I said authors because this series is multi-authored and the writers participating are surely top notch. Sarina Bowen starts introducing the characters, their backgrounds, their friendship, their love for music and, in this case, the emotional love story between a rock star and his hot baby mama.

So, Lies and Lullabies is the first installment in the Hush Note series and, as I said, it is written by Sarina Bowen. This focuses on the lead singer Jonas Smith and the girl he left behind five years ago, Kira Cassidy. Jonas needed some time off and then he met Kira in quiet Nest Lake. They start a friendship (while being highly attracted to each other) but Jonas never mentions his real name and who he is. Summer ends and Jonas leaves, not knowing that Kira is pregnant with his baby. Five years pass and they reunite. What will happen?

Once you’d looked into the passionate eyes of someone who loved you just for you, nothing else would do.

I do believe the best word to describe Lies and Lullabies is definitely sweet. Sarina did a pretty good job with this rock star / second chance romance and introducing the Hush Notes group to the readers. The connection between Kira and Jonas (and their adorable daughter) is beautiful. Jonas is so protective of his girls and it was impossible for Kira not to fall in love with him all over again. I do have to say though it took me a while to get into the story and connect with the couple. I liked a lot of aspects about this book, it just isn’t my favorite from Sarina Bowen. Still, I loved meeting and starting to know these characters and I loved seeing Jonas fighting to be with his sweetness. I am so happy this couple and their cute Vivi got their HEA.

“I was always looking for something and never finding it. And then when I found it, I didn’t recognize it, and I walked away. I’m never doing that again.”

Therefore, I am rating Lies and Lullabies with 3.5 STARS because I found it to be a lovely way to start the Hush Note series. I am a sucker for families and second chances in romance and I enjoyed how Sarina developed this story and these themes! As I said, not loved it but still really enjoyed it overall. Jonas, Kira and Vivi were so sweet together and I also really loved the rest of the characters (especially Adam and Ethan!). I cannot wait to read Quinn’s and Nixon’s stories too and I am sure Devney Perry and Rebecca Yarros will do a very good job with these characters!🎵Audible →
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I watched Kira ride off, wondering what the hell had just happened. Sure, she probably guessed that I wrote that song about her. But she’d only heard the first few bars before sprinting away like I was the devil himself.

Spinning around, I located the lodge’s bike shed. I rolled a bike out and hopped on. The seat was too low for me, so I had to stand up on the pedals.

But no matter. I rode off after Kira, my first time on a real bike in years.

The road curved around to the left, and Kira’s house soon came into view. She was sitting on the front steps. She didn’t look all that surprised to see me biking toward her, but the look of pain on her face was so vivid that I could feel it in my gut. Something was wrong, and I still didn’t know what.

“Feel any better?”

She shook her head, and I thought I saw fear in her eyes.

“Kira,” I said softly. “I know you want me to leave you alone right now, but I can’t—our conversation isn’t over. In twenty-four hours I’ll be back on that bus. Honestly, you’re scaring me. When I last saw you, things seemed like they were on the upswing for you. When I said I think about you all the time, I didn’t mean to be a creeper. I meant that I was picturing a happy ever after for you.”

“Mama!” a little voice called from beyond the screen door.

At the sound of it, Kira’s whole body went rigid. And then tears spilled down her cheeks.

I heard little footsteps pounding onto the screened porch. And then a small set of hands became visible against the door just behind Kira. Quick as a flash, Kira leapt to her feet and spun around, darting through the door. It closed with a bang behind her.

“Whoa,” a man’s voice said. “Deep breaths, Kiki. What did he say?”

The hair stood up on my neck. I dropped the bicycle and covered the distance to the stoop in three paces. Leaping up, I opened the screen door. A little girl stood there, with fair, curly hair and blue-green eyes. I was no good with kids’ ages. She wasn’t an infant, but she wasn’t school-aged either. There was a babyish fullness to her face. She was three? Four? Five? I looked up at Kira.

“I’m so sorry,” she squeaked.

That’s when I finally understood. And I almost couldn’t draw breath to speak again. “I… She… What the fuck, Kira?”

“That’s a very bad word,” the little girl said, accusation in her voice.

“Sorry,” I said automatically. I raised my eyes to Kira’s. “You… She…”

I couldn’t think. There was pressure in my ears, and my pulse was ragged. Dizzy, I thought, absently, putting one hand on the door jamb for support.

“Breathe, man,” the guy behind Kira said. He wore a bright pink polo shirt and an expression of concern. “Sit down. Seriously, before you crash.”

I bent over and grabbed my knees. “Oh my God.” The only thing I could hear was my own ragged breathing and Kira’s choked sobs.

“Mama!” a little voice said, full of alarm. “Don’t cry!”

The scary moment stretched on, until I heard yet another bicycle approaching outside. A moment later, another male voice called out, “Knock-knock!”

The pink-polo-shirt guy answered him, his voice full of false cheer. “Hi, Luke!” Under his breath he added, “Wow. It’s raining men.” Then he scooped the little girl up in his arms, stepped around me, and walked out the screen door. It closed behind him with a bang.

I just stood there, staring at my shoes, trying to catch my breath. Kira’s shoes moved into my visual field, but I wasn’t ready to talk to her yet. Not until my head could clear. Which would probably be sometime next week.

We stood here, awkward and quiet for a couple of long minutes. There was some low-key chatter outside, and then I heard the sound of the bicycle departing.

The guy in the polo shirt came back inside, alone.

“You’re her brother.” I coughed, trying to reconstruct the world into a rational place.

“Yup,” the guy said. “Uncle Adam.”

“Where is Vivi?” Kira asked, her voice raw.

“Luke is taking her for a little bike ride. There may be ice cream involved.”

“Really, Adam?” Kira moved quickly to peer through the screen. “But that’s awkward.”

“Oh, honey. We have first class tickets on the HMS Awkward today. And the ship has sailed. Luke even had a pink helmet for her, Kiki. Just go with it, okay? I told him you were having a moment.”

I straightened up. “She’s having a moment,” I spat out. “Is that what this is?” My pulse was still pounding in my ears, but now from anger instead of shock.

Kira was as pale as a sheet. “I was going to tell you today.” She pulled a photo out of her pocket. “Here. I was trying to find a way.”

I snatched the picture from her hand. “She’s, what, four?” The photo shook as I tried to look at it. The little girl smiled up at the camera, a stuffed animal in her hands. It was purple. Somehow this detail made it all the more real. The little girl in the photo was clutching the purple cat I’d won at the fair all those years ago.

The Author

Sarina Bowen is the RITA® Award winning author of over thirty contemporary novels. She most recently hit the USA Today bestseller’s list in January, with Overnight Sensation. Formerly a derivatives trader on Wall Street, Sarina holds a BA in economics from Yale University.

Sarina Bowen is a New Englander whose Vermont ancestors cut timber and farmed the north country since the 1760s. Sarina is grateful for the invention of indoor plumbing and wi-fi during the intervening 250 years. On a few wooded acres, she lives with her husband, two boys, and an ungodly amount of ski and hockey gear.

Sarina’s books are published in a dozen languages on four continents. In 2016, The Romance Writers of America honored HIM by Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy with a RITA award for Best Contemporary Romance, Mid-Length.

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