About Novel Girl / Berto Designs

Rebecca Berto writes stories about love and relationships. She gets a thrill when her readers are emotional reading her books, and gets even more of a kick when they tell her so. She's strangely imaginative, spends too much time on her computer, and is certifiably crazy when she works on her fiction. Rebecca Berto lives in Melbourne, Australia with her boyfriend and their pets.

Book review : “Confess” by Colleen Hoover

22609310Title: Confess

Author: Colleen Hoover

Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance

Publication date: March 10, 2015

My ratingNovel Girl - 5 stars


♥ ♥ ♥

Book Description

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Colleen Hoover, a new novel about risking everything for love—and finding your heart somewhere between the truth and lies.

Auburn Reed has her entire life mapped out. Her goals are in sight and there’s no room for mistakes. But when she walks into a Dallas art studio in search of a job, she doesn’t expect to find a deep attraction to the enigmatic artist who works there, Owen Gentry.

For once, Auburn takes a risk and puts her heart in control, only to discover Owen is keeping major secrets from coming out. The magnitude of his past threatens to destroy everything important to Auburn, and the only way to get her life back on track is to cut Owen out of it.

The last thing Owen wants is to lose Auburn, but he can’t seem to convince her that truth is sometimes as subjective as art. All he would have to do to save their relationship is confess. But in this case, the confession could be much more destructive than the actual sin…

♥ ♥ ♥


WOAF. This is Colleen Hoover at her best! Along with her trademark gut-wrenching emotional style, Confess has the added wow factor with real life confessions from fans submitted to Colleen Hoover, which have been used within the story.

This is an amazing original storyline for an otherwise flooded New Adult market that has many similar stories. And New Adult is great at times for that reason as you have plenty to choose from, but sometimes someone takes a chance like Hoover has and it blows you away. She captured me with the originality. He’s an artist with life-changing trouble brewing. She’s a strong woman with a terrible past who still comes through fragile despite putting on a brave front. Their stories may seem familiar, but it’s part of the Hoover charm. You can connect to the characters even when the story turns out so much more different than you expected. They have one heck of a story that unfolds — which i won’t go into detail as it’ll tell far too much.

“I’m scared I’ll never feel this again with anyone else,” I whisper.
He squeezes my hands. “I’m scared you will.”

Now I hope this isn’t too late to back up a bit and talk about my reading habits. I’m a slow reader for an author and book lover. Typically I read books in 1-3 weeks. I read this in a little over 24 hours. Why? I simply could not stop. Every chapter leaves you a little more breathless and on edge. At every turn things get worse and better at the same time. Damn that Hoover! I am a super picky and frustrated reader. I pick apart every little thing and one issue can distract me so much I sometimes put down stories. Yet in Confess I was far too invested to put the book down and space it out as I usually have to do. I’m not going to lie and say it ended with all the little bits and bobbles making sense and to my liking, but I can honestly say that they didn’t factor at all into my rating of this book. It’s a solid 5 star read for me, and I cherish those. I don’t have many true 5 star reads these days.

“I love you so much.” His voice is breathless and full of fear. “I’ll love you forever. Even when I can’t.” My tears fall harder at his words. “And I’ll love you forever. Even when I shouldn’t.”

This book gave me hope and made me cherish the human condition. I loved and learnt. And i think i just made some new friends (and enemies) in 306 pages. For real, you guys. Confess is everything we book lovers crave in a fictional story — nothing about it feels fake at all.

“Some secrets should never turn into confessions. I know that better than anyone.”

It’s like peering into a part of the world yet undiscovered and it’s all your secret to keep.

“I’ll love you forever. Even when I can’t.”

Highly recommended!

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Book review : “Writing Plots with Drama, Depth & Heart: Nail Your Novel” by Roz Morris

81UxKD+nWgL._SL1500_Title: Writing Plots with Drama, Depth & Heart: Nail Your Novel

Author: Rox Morris

Genre: Writing, Research & Publishing Guides

Publication date: January 5, 2015

My ratingNovel Girl - 5 stars


♥ ♥ ♥

Book Description

What keeps a reader curious? It’s the story. You might have a dazzling prose voice and plausible characters, but if they don’t do anything, the reader is likely to lose interest.

So where do you find story ideas? How do you make them into a captivating read?

Do you know what genre you are best suited to write? What is literary fiction and how do you write that? How will you give your book depth without seeming preachy or bringing the plot to a standstill?

What are the hidden patterns that ply the reader’s emotions, regardless of your genre or style? How can you use them with originality? If you want to write a story that breaks the usual conventions, how do you do it?

Whatever type of novel you want to write, this book will show you, in down-to-earth tutorials, games and exercises.

Use it before you write and when revising, to diagnose your story’s strengths and weaknesses, to decide how to begin, what to put in the middle, how it should end. If you’ve had feedback from critique partners and editors, use it to decode what’s really wrong – instead of what they think might be.

Most of all, use it to find out where you already have spellbinding plot material. Discover where your best ideas are hiding and how to tell stories with drama, depth and heart.

By a bestselling ghostwriter, literary author, creative coach and book doctor.

♥ ♥ ♥


I have a “Best Everrr” shelf on Goodreads and I haven’t added a new book to it for 8.5 months — that is until a minute ago when i added this one. It’s reserved for books that are more than five stars, books I would happily read twice (as a rule of thumb I dislike re-reading books), and ones that went above and beyond what i hoped and expected.

I loved Writing Plots With Drama, Depth & Heart: Nail Your Novel, as it states the basics you’d expect in a ToC but then it feels written in a personal way, easy to connect to, and really reaches out to find a way to make the reader understand the content in a way they can readily apply to their own work.

I won’t delete this book from my Kindle for a while although I delete most books after I finish. I’ve bookmarked some pages that I will reference often and am finally relieved I’ve found information that I’ve been hoping to have for revision/editing phases of writing my books.

This book is a good all rounder yet avoids the Jack Of All Trades trap. There are minimal sections you’d skip if you were an experienced writer and beginners could easily understand it.

I highly recommend this investment if you’re a writer. We never stop learning, so why stunt your writerly growth? :)


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FREE eBooks

Did you know PRECISE is again FREE to download?

Precise cover - eBook2-normal

Amazon US: http://goo.gl/wndD5o

iBooks: http://goo.gl/pXWf7M

Google Play: http://goo.gl/IG8y59

Kobo: http://goo.gl/mspr5g

Sequel –> Pulling Me Under: http://amzn.to/1xILdgR

The Masquerade - Rebecca BertoKDP

The Masquerade (The Rental #0.5) is also FREE:

Amazon US: http://goo.gl/54Yh6s

Amazon UK: http://goo.gl/WociJE

iBooks: http://goo.gl/aXT51l

Nook: http://goo.gl/Kw9LUr

Google Play: http://goo.gl/ji8bn7

Kobo: http://goo.gl/YRaCfz

Sequel –> The Rental (The Rental #1): http://goo.gl/xqLPg8

Cover reveal: “Black Iris” by Leah Raeder

I can’t quite express my excitement for this book! Leah’s début, UNTEACHABLE was one of my favourite books of all time — a student/teacher love story so unconventional and erotic and raw and emotional that it has stayed in my heart even to this day.

So no pressure or anything but I’m SUPER DOOPA excited for her next book. Squeee!!

Title: Black Iris

Author: Leah Raeder

Genre: New Adult Romantic Suspense

Pages: 320 pages

Publication date: April 28, 2015


BLACK IRIS by Leah Raeder

April is the cruelest month, T.S. Eliot said, and that’s because it kills. It’s the month with the highest suicide rate. You’d think December, or even January—the holidays and all that forced cheer and agonized smiling pushing fragile people to the edge—but actually it’s spring, when the world wakes from frostbound sleep and something cruel and final stirs inside those of us who are broken. Like Eliot said: mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain. In the deepest throes of depression, when sunlight is anguish and the sky throbs like one big raw migraine and you just want to sleep until you or everything else dies, you’re less likely to commit suicide than someone coming out of a depressive episode. Drug companies know this. That’s why antidepressants have to be marked with the warning MAY CAUSE SUICIDAL THOUGHTS.

Because what brings you back to life also gives you the means to destroy yourself.


It only took one moment of weakness for Laney Keating’s world to fall apart. One stupid gesture for a hopeless crush. Then the rumors began. Slut, they called her. Queer. Psycho. Mentally ill, messed up, so messed up even her own mother decided she wasn’t worth sticking around for.

If Laney could erase that whole year, she would. College is her chance to start with a clean slate.

She’s not looking for new friends, but they find her: charming, handsome Armin, the only guy patient enough to work through her thorny defenses—and fiery, filterless Blythe, the bad girl and partner in crime who has thorns of her own.

But Laney knows nothing good ever lasts. When a ghost from her past resurfaces—the bully who broke her down completely—she decides it’s time to live up to her own legend. And Armin and Blythe are going to help.

Which was the plan all along.

Because the rumors are true. Every single one. And Laney is going to show them just how true.

She’s going to show them all.


Leah Raeder is a writer and unabashed nerd. Aside from reading her brains out, she enjoys graphic design, video games, fine whiskey, and the art of self-deprecation. She lives with her very own manic pixie dream boy in Chicago. Visit her at LeahRaeder.com.

Buy the book:

Amazon US eBook  |  Amazon US paperback  |  Amazon UK  |  Amazon Aus  |  iBooks  |  Nook  |  Kobo  |  The Book Depository  |

Find Leah online:

http://www.leahraeder.com/  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Instagram  |

BookBub ad day for The Rental – share share share :)

Click to view on BookBub

Click to view on BookBub

Yay! Today a dream of mine has come true. The Rental is featured on BookBub for its $0.99 sale. I am trembling with excitement and feel honoured to have been selected! They did wonderful things for my novel, Drowning in You when it was featured there a while back.

If you haven’t heard of BookBub they advertise discounted eBooks from Literary to Thriller to Christian to Romance to LGBT fiction. Their Erotic Romance category, which The Rental is advertised in, has 600,000+ subscribers.

I would LOVE if you could share the below purchase links all over social media. Make today the best possible success! THANK YOU


Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1C0bIzk
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1sBvetr
iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/book/id909737506
Nook: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/2940046250428
Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/the-rental-4
Amazon Ca: http://www.amazon.ca/dp/B00MR2MCZ0
Amazon Aus: http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B00MR2MCZ0
Amazon De: http://www.amazon.de/dp/B00MR2MCZ0


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Book review : “Bad Romeo” by Leisa Rayven

91J43Y1iGvL._SL1500_Title: Bad Romeo

Author: Leisa Rayven

Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance

Publication date: December 23, 2014

My ratingNovel Girl - 4.5 stars


♥ ♥ ♥

Book Description

When Cassie Taylor met Ethan Holt at acting school, sparks flew. She was the good girl actress. He was the bad boy about campus. But one fated casting choice for Romeo and Juliet changed it all. Like the characters they were playing, Cassie and Ethan’s romance seemed destined. Until he broke her heart and betrayed her trust. Now the A-list heartthrob is back in her life and turning her world around. One touch at a time.

Cast as romantic leads once again, they’re forced to confront raw memories of the heartbreaking lows and pulse-pounding highs of their secret college affair. But they’ll also discover that people who rub each other the wrong way often make the best sparks.

♥ ♥ ♥


I write this minutes after finishing, emotions scrambled, eyes blurry (not from crying—it’s not that kind of read) and heart pumping. Bad Romeo was a long book (my kindle location seemed to suggest it was almost twice as long as most novels). I’m not fast reader, but in my own way I read this fast! I didn’t ever feel it dragging despite the length. Mentally I was doing fist pumps because I got to read and read and read without it ending too soon.

This is a love/hate romance, one that’s quite dysfunctional, loaded with a buttload of chemistry between our leads, Cassie and Ethan.

Come the end of the novel I was scrambling hoping for even more, hoping that everything would work out. I don’t put spoilers in my reviews, so you’ll have to make do without me satisfying you with an answer on that latter point. ;)

This bit . . .

“It’s like we’re oil and vinegar. No matter how much we shake each other up, we’re never going to blend.”

“Cassie,” she says, giving me her best heed-the-pearls-of-wisdom-I’m-about-to-impart expression, “you forget that even though oil and vinegar don’t blend, they still make delicious salad dressing.”

. . . perfectly describes the tone and storyline of the book. Cassie and Ethan butt heads. They act and think differently, they have different types of history (him with wayyyy much baggage) and together they pretty much shake each other up until breaking point. And, yes, by that stage they felt like what a fiercely shaken bottle of oil and vinegar looks like (if that makes any sense).

The angst in this book is off the charts. Like whoah, Colleen Hoover high. I was pretty much sweating, shaking and jumping in my seat begging for them to work out already!!! 

I bet if he entered his penis in a competition, it would win “Best in Show” and he could walk around with a giant blue ribbon stuck to his crotch.

If I asked nicely, I wonder if he’d use his pretty penis to remove my pesky virginity.

The novel is told from two times: when they first meet when Cassie, the main character, is nineteen and then three years later after he broke her heart and they spent all that time apart. Until now. They are the leads in a play together like they were three years ago.

The novel builds with rising angst because of their love/hate relationship, which brings me to the less awesome parts (which aren’t terrible, just drove me a bit insane). I felt that Ethan pushed back at Cassie way more than he should have. As I lingered between 2/3 to the ending my frustration peaked. This lead to reservations about totally loving and connecting with the reasons they couldn’t work out. These were okay, but my heart pounded for other aspects such as their chemistry, the parallels between them as leads in the play then and now, their quirkiness, Cassie’s absolutely piss-yourself-laughing humour and Ethan’s drop-dead sexy image. 

“That’s it. I’m taking you home.”
I shake my head, wishing he could understand that if I stay with him any longer, he’ll unstitch me, and I really can’t fall apart now.

Bitterness is the only thing holding me together.


I am so glad I read this ARC now and not later. More time to bask in how awesome and refreshing this story was. Although, this is the first book of a series and my heart will be in knots until the end when their story is complete.

Highly recommend if you love angst/New Adult bad boys/good girls/college stories.

This is my Ethan Holt (take note of that look in his eyes. hehe! SO fitting!) (He’s the guy from Taylor Swift’s Blank Space music video!)

 photo ScreenShot2014-12-21at53321pm.png

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Facebook giveaway for The Rental – enter now!

Are you on Facebook? I’m giving away 2 eBook copies of The Rental!


Enter here:  https://www.facebook.com/RebeccaBertoAuthor/photos/a.496550480438203.1073741826.209018375858083/746240455469203/?type=1

$0.99 sale – THE RENTAL

S U R P R I S E !

The Rental 0.99 buttonIf you haven’t downloaded your copy of the scorching hot erotic romance, THE RENTAL do it NOW! It’s a crazy $0.99 for a limited time! This is a story of exploring sexual desires, oneself and true love in the most unlikely of circumstances.

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1C0bIzk
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1sBvetr
iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/book/id909737506
Nook: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/2940046250428
Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/the-rental-4
Amazon Ca: http://www.amazon.ca/dp/B00MR2MCZ0
Amazon Aus: http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B00MR2MCZ0
Amazon De: http://www.amazon.de/dp/B00MR2MCZ0


B L U R B :

At first, Rick Delaney watched Vee Wyland with the hungry eyes of a fox as if she were a rabbit … his rabbit. But one day, he slunk away without notice.

Months away from graduating high school, Vee’s life is on the verge of crumbling. At home, dire finances and long hours test her family. Her boyfriend hardly pays attention to her. And she can’t shake her feelings for his older brother, Rick.

Then, all in one night, tragedy tears her teetering life into shreds.

When Rick and Vee reunite, the sparks fly. However, she unwittingly signs away a future for both of them. In his world, a place called The Rental, she becomes Victoria and Rick becomes Rhett. One part of her watches with fascination, while the other unfurls and embraces her sexual awakening. It began as a game, but the consequences are real.

Following their heart’s desire is forbidden, but walking away could strip their hope for a future.

The Rental is an erotic romance that explores how sex isn’t purely physical; sometimes, it’s a gateway to your soul.

The Rental header

Series details:

The Masquerade (prequel, #0.5): can be read before or after The Rental
The Rental (#1)
The Reversal (#2): coming April 9, 2015

For more updates on Rebecca Berto’s sales, news and books, sign up to her newsletter: http://eepurl.com/p4a9v

Remember that you can download the short prequel, THE MASQUERADE for FREE!

The Masquerade - Rebecca BertoKDP

Amazon  |   Nook  |  iBooks  |  Kobo  |  Smashwords


Kindle countdown deal: 3 days to snap up PULLING ME UNDER for $1.99!



You love a deal. Am I right? Well, currently my novel, Pulling Me Under is just $1.99 on Amazon Kindle. You have just over three days to purchase it for this bargain price before it goes up (orig. price $4.49). HURRY!

It’s part of a Kindle countdown deal, which means after a certain amount of time the deal ends. You can SEE the countdown as below which I screenshotted moments ago. (The deal is only available in one country at the moment, which is the US.)

Screen Shot 2014-10-23 at 5.45.51 pm


Happy reading!