The Companion Contract – Solace Ames – 4.5 stars

February 10, 2015 Carina Press, NetGalley, Read in 2015 1 ★★★★½

I received this book for free from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Companion Contract – Solace Ames – 4.5 starsThe Companion Contract on February 9, 2015
Pages: 233
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley.com
AmazonBarnes & Noble four-half-stars
Control. Submission. Power.

Amy Mendoza knew she'd never have a Cinderella story. She walked away from the ashes of her childhood on her own, and signed her first porn contract the day she turned eighteen. The money's been good, but it's time to walk away again before the life drags her down. When a mysterious stranger offers her an unusual contract—sexual companion to a recently relapsed rock star—she accepts.

Amy quickly and gratefully falls into an easy rhythm of control and submission—but it's not her client who keeps her up at night. Emanuel, lead guitarist and the man who hired her, occupies her thoughts—and soon, her bed. Their connection is intense, and although Amy knows sleeping with Emanuel isn't what she's there for—isn't what she's being paid for—what's between them is too strong to ignore. But there's more to Emanuel than Amy knows, and submitting to him might come at too high a price…

89,000 words

Wow… This was something unexpected that made me very happy as a reader.  The subject material isn’t fluffy and the heroine is definitely not the normal type but she’s very honest and open with her flaws/strengths.  I enjoyed reading the nuances and relationships that are in flux throughout this story but also enjoyed the threads that weave through the characters showing how lives evolve over a period of months.  I think what struck me most was the fact that Solace is not afraid to show you the dregs and low points but also makes the high points realistic for the characters.  There is not a perfect happy ending for all of the characters but there is an ending for them that shows they are on the path to being fulfilled.  There is no magic bullet that makes everything better but hard work and some pain can make it possible for you to find what you need.

Amy was a very strong character who is at a crossroads in her life.  She isn’t completely fond of being a porn star but hey it pays the bills and honestly her issues aren’t with the sex but that she’s feeling a bit burnt out.  She’s approached by someone she has idolized from afar to be a sober companion for a band member but this isn’t a “Hey let’s keep you on the straight and narrow” type companion…  This is a keep him sexed up and happy so he stays off drugs companion.  She’s happy to be used in this manner but she also does her part to be the other type companion.  I liked her no nonsense approach but loved seeing her internal struggle with what she wants from her idol and what she thinks is going on.  She’s smart as hell and extremely practical but is incredibly vulnerable behind her walls.  As she gets involved with our hero we get to see more of this vulnerability but strength.

Emmanuel is something else.  He isn’t easy to read but you can sense his enjoyment of Amy even as she was fulfilling the contract.  Their relationship actually builds nicely thru the story.  We get to see them interacting outside of the bedroom before they actually have sex which builds the tension.  Sure she gives him a blowjob really early in the book but most of the book is them building up to their eventual pairing and not of them being paired from moment one.  I enjoyed that buildup as we get to really see what makes them tick apart and together which made the final outcome very worth the wait.  He’s very complicated but for Amy he just is someone who also has flaws but deserves adoration and love.

I am going to have to get the rest of the stories out today by Solace and keep my eyes open for more.  This was a very well done story of recovery and owning one’s self no matter what your life’s path is…

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Quarterback Draw – Jaci Burton – 4.5 stars

February 6, 2015 Berkley Trade, Read in 2015, Sent 2 ★★★★½

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Quarterback Draw – Jaci Burton – 4.5 starsQuarterback Draw by Jaci Burton
Published by Penguin on 2015-02-03
Genres: Contemporary, Erotica, Fiction, Romance
Pages: 336
Format: Paperback
Source: the publisher
Goodreads
four-half-stars
Playing For Keeps

Grant Cassidy knows how to be a football star—flash that dazzling smile, throw the winning pass, get the girl. But while the hot quarterback loves the game and the lifestyle, no woman has come close to catching his heart. Then he matches wits with a smart, gorgeous model, and Grant finds himself wanting more than a fling.

Supermodel Katrina Koslova might live in a world of glitz and camera flashes, but she works hard to provide for the family that relies on her. She doesn’t have time for fun—much less a boyfriend—but Grant seems determined to be the exception to Katrina’s rule.

Their explosive chemistry is undeniable, but Katrina’s afraid to let go and rely on anyone but herself. Grant intends to ease her fears and prove he’s a man of style and substance.

Ummmmm I can’t say enough about the covers for this series…  talk about needing a towel to wipe up the drool but the story in this one was lovely.

We have two people who aren’t really looking for the ONE but find it when they get paired up at a swimsuit shoot.   Grant comes in to the photoshoot thinking let’s get this over with so I can head back and relax before the football season starts.  He isn’t overly fond of these shoots but they do pay well and he is smart enough to know that football doesn’t last forever.  PR is SOOOO not his thing but hey stuck in a tropical paradise isn’t a bad way to earn some dollars but he is surprised by a connection he feels with Katrina and even more surprised by how much he wants to get to know her better.  I mean he can have any woman he wants but there is something about her that causes him to want to pursue her.  He doesn’t get very far because the one thing Katrina does well is focus and ignore men vying for her attentions.

Katrina is used to doing everything with extreme control.  She has had to raise her younger siblings from an early age and her focus is on keeping the modeling career going in order to provide for them.  She has no time or desire to pursue a relationship or to be honest even have fun.  Her life revolves around her siblings and nothing will take her focus from that.  When she meets Grant she’s struck by their chemistry and the fact that she wants…  simple as that… she wants….  This is not something she is comfortable with and it leads to tension between them as Grant works hard to get her to let him in.

I liked both of their focus on family and that it means everything to both of them.  The romance between the pair builds nicely and has moments where the issues seem a bit too difficult to get over but I loved how compromise and valuing each other ended up being central to it working.  Grant does sort of walk all over barriers to get to Katrina but it was meant well and honestly was what she needed in order to really embrace living for herself and not just wrapped up with her siblings.

Her siblings were priceless and good kids so I loved their part in helping her realize that they would be ok with Katrina having a life….

Now for the fun stuff… I can’t believe I’m going to do this but I must get better about letting paper copies go so…  If you’d like to win my finished review copy of this title…  What sport do you find you love most?  One commenter will be lucky enough to win as long as they’ve entered by 11:59 pm US Central Time on Feb 11, 2015.

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Last Hit – Jessica Clare/Jan Frederick – 5 stars

February 5, 2015 Berkley Trade, Read in 2015, Sent 1 ★★★★★

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Last Hit – Jessica Clare/Jan Frederick – 5 starsLast Hit by Jessica ClareJen Frederick
Published by Berkley Publishing Group on 2015-02-03
Genres: Contemporary, Fiction, Romance, Suspense, Thrillers
Pages: 368
Format: Paperback
Source: the publisher
AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
five-stars
From two bestselling authors—the first in a deliciously bold new series that takes readers to the most dangerous edge of desire . . .

Nikolai: I have been a contract killer since I was a boy. For years I savored the fear caused by my name, the trembling at the sight of my tattoos. The stars on my knees, the marks on my fingers, the dagger in my neck, all spoke of danger. If you saw my eyes, it was the last vision you’d have. I have ever been the hunter, never the prey. With her, I am the mark and I am ready to lie down and let her capture me. Opening my small, scarred heart to her brings out my enemies. I will carry out one last hit, but if they hurt her, I will bring the world down around their ears.

Daisy: I’ve been sheltered from the outside world all my life. Home-schooled and farm-raised, I’m so naive that my best friend calls me Pollyanna. I like to believe the best about people. Nikolai is part of this new life, and he’s terrifying to me. Not because his eyes are cold or my friend warns me away from him, but because he’s the only man who has ever seen the real me beneath the awkwardness. With him, my heart is at risk . . . and also, my life.

*hangs head in shame* Yes I know Mel..  I know..  bad Stephanie for not reading this earlier…  I’m just a bad, bad girl…  *snickers*

Anyway I have to say I am mad at myself for not deciding to pick this up earlier but I am glad I finally read it because man oh man is Nikolai something else.  There is not a lot of sexy times in this book but you know what…  IT DOESN’T NEED IT!  There is so much tension in this book that you won’t miss the main event and will be happy when these two finally have that moment.  This book is more about two on the surface different people that really are the perfect match.  We have sweet, virginal (yes… VIRGINal) Daisy, who is so naive and overwhelmed by life in the real world, and Nikolai, who is  jaded and in his eyes filthy not fit for anything good.

The journey these characters take is one of discovering your worth, your heart and finally living free from the tethers of your past.  I adored seeing Nikolai struggle with small talk and how to court Daisy.  He’s so used to just having sex as a form of stress release and it meaning nothing than a way to take the edge off that trying to woo someone is just a foreign concept to him.  This is a man who has no friends but has only existed to kill and earn money.  He has a heartrending past and watching him finally become fully human was beautiful.

Daisy is fully human but has spent her life being isolated from the outside world by a man who was battling his own demons.  I loved her enthusiasm about even the tiniest things and appreciated that she didn’t hate her father but wanted to do nothing more than help him.  Her guilt where he was concerned is honest and raw which I appreciated.  I also liked that she understands how naive she is but doesn’t use it to throw up her hands and quit.  She’s stubborn and strong which shows as things come to light.  Her ability to see Nikolai as a human being is tested but thankfully she sees thru to his core personality even as she feels betrayed.

I personally cannot wait for Daniel and Reagan’s story to unfold next plus look forward to seeing more of Nikolai/Daisy in later stories.  If you are looking for a book that is more about tension and building a relationship even if it is shrouded in lies then this one is for you.

 

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Manwhore by Katy Evans – Excerpt Reveal!

February 4, 2015 Tours 1

 

manwhore

manwhore cover

RELEASE DATE: March 24th

MANWHORE

book #1 of ‘the manwhore series’

Is it possible to expose Chicago’s hottest player—without getting played?

This is the story I’ve been waiting for all my life, and its name is Malcolm Kyle Preston Logan Saint. Don’t be fooled by that last name though. There’s nothing holy about the man except the hell his parties raise. The hottest entrepreneur Chicago has ever known, he’s a man’s man with too much money to spend and too many women vying for his attention.

Mysterious. Privileged. Legendary. His entire life he’s been surrounded by the press as they dig for tidbits to see if his fairytale life is for real or all mirrors and social media lies. Since he hit the scene, his secrets have been his and his alone to keep. And that’s where I come in.

Assigned to investigate Saint and reveal his elusive personality, I’m determined to make him the story that will change my career.

But I never imagined he would change my life. Bit by bit, I start to wonder if I’m the one discovering him…or if he’s uncovering me.

What happens when the man they call Saint, makes you want to sin?

EXCERPT

I look very different than the girl Saint met in his office. But I don’t feel any different. My nerves are frayed to the edges as I give my name to a bouncer at the entrance and I’m allowed into the club, every part of me snug and tight in my dress as my black heels hit the floor.

Whereas M4 was all museum-like, the Ice Box is pure dark decadence. Ice sculptures sit on pedestals around the room. Cages with body-painted dancers hang from the ceiling. A bar with white and blue lights stretches from one wall to another.

Strobe lights flash across the space as I get jostled by the crowd. The bass thumps as the song “Waves” by Mr. Probz plays for the dancing crowd. Drinks are flowing on shiny silver trays, and the drinks are so adorned—by fruits, olives, salt glitter or colorful liquid swirls—they’re like artworks. This isn’t a normal swanky club. It’s the rich boys’ club and everywhere you look are beautiful people wearing beautiful things.

“I met him! God! When he said hi I thought I’d faint…!”

My nerves eat at me as I hear that, because I know for sure they’re talking about him. Trying to breathe, I wind deeper into the club, wishing for Gina so bad I ache. The room is packed with women, some clearly on the hunt, others already paired with someone, a few hanging out with their friends. I breathe slowly, in and out, telling myself I can do this. It’s just a club. I can have some fun. It’s been a while since I’ve gone out to a club, and never a club like this, but it doesn’t matter. I can interview people, and if I’m lucky, I can do more than that.

After scanning the area and trying to find the best spy-spots, I go to the top level and that’s when I get the best look at what’s happening downstairs at the most crowded corner.

And speak of the devil. My heart stops a beat when I see that dark head of his, and that loathed, burning knot in my stomach squeezes with a vengeance. I swear no one in my life has ever made me this nervous.

He sits with his arms stretched out behind him, a wine glass and two women vying for his attention as he chats with his friends. His masculine face is illuminated in certain angles when the lights flash—his beauty unprecedented.

Okay. Breathing. Do I want him to know I’m here or not?

A watery sensation seems to spread down my limbs as I force myself to go downstairs. I wind a path to the ladies’ room and worm myself through the throng of bodies toward a wide mirror above a set of modernist floating sinks. A group of women preen at themselves while I look our reflections. To my right, a woman pouts her red lips, and to my left, her friend pouts her pink ones. Me? I’m still me, but I look extravagant, like I was born here. I look very different than the young girl in coveralls he met. Will he even recognize me like this?

“You going to the after-party?” Red Lips asks Pink Lips as they retouch their lipsticks.

“No key yet.”

“Lookie lookie.” Red Lips waves a keycard in the air.

There’s squealing in the room and she tucks the key into her bra. “Mine!”

“So there’s an after-party?” I ask them.

“At Saint’s penthouse,” one says, nodding.

“How do you get invited to this party?”

“A hundred keys are distributed during the evening.”

A sudden thought of stealing the very key she’s just tucked into her bra flickers through my mind. I mean, it’s just a key. It couldn’t possibly be a felony.

“Babe,” she tells me, “stop giving my key the eye! I’ve been waiting three years to get a key like this. Go and work your ass out there if you want one. Only the finest asses make it.”

“Thanks,” I say, turning to look at my ass in the mirror questioningly. Gina says I’ve got a great ass. It’s perky and the perfect handful, some would say. But would Saint say that?

I sigh and lean against the wall, then I spot all the little writings on an open stall door. I narrow my eyes, forcing my focus.

Malcolm for my baby-daddy

I sucked Saint’s cock

Tahoe rammed me right here

Callan licks cunt like a caveman

I head back into the noise and try to find a good spot for spying when I see him again. The two women won’t leave his side and now my stomach for some reason feels jumpy, annoying me. One of the blondes takes a shot from the waiter, licks the rim, and then adds salt.

Saint edges back and watches her with an expression of casual boredom, but his lips are curled, as if he’s having some fun.

I’m so engrossed watching—a little too fascinated and a little bit disgusted—I don’t realize a guard has walked up to me until he’s right in my face. He signals to the back of the room—to where Saint’s best friends are now watching me. Saint isn’t even looking my way. Oh no, he’s too busy being entertained, still wearing that almost-bored smile. Maybe they need to take their tops off to get him excited?

All three men fit in perfectly with the lavish surroundings, but I can’t look at the other two. Only at Malcolm. Malcolm’s dark good looks blend with the shadows like Hades in his own little corner of hell.

Suddenly he laughs over something one of the blondes does and he turns a little, his eyes landing straight on me—and stopping there.

I feel his stare like a hit of adrenaline. I want to look away, but I can’t, I feel trapped. I don’t know if I made this up but I could’ve sworn his chest jerked as if he sucked in a breath.

Does he recognize me?

Do I want him to?

Suddenly the atmosphere is so heavy I can’t breathe. My lungs feel like rocks and I really can’t breathe. As he rakes me in one fast, complete sweep of his eyes that makes my stomach grip nervously, he takes in my pumps up to my long blonde hair, and I become aware of my dress hugging the top of my thighs, my hips, my abdomen, my breasts and even my ass. Oh god. I force myself to follow the guard in his direction, every step accelerating my heartbeat. In that black suit and without a tie, the top button of his shirt open and his hair a bit rumpled, Saint is the embodiment of luxurious and decadent and sin. He is Sin Itself and I feel like an absolute…virgin.

He stretches his long legs out before him, his stare fixed on mine without any seeming inclination to move away.

“Mr. Saint,” the guard clears his throat. “The gentlemen had me summon her.”

Although his smile doesn’t waver, the look on his face is completely remote and unreadable.

“Here she is, gentlemen,” the guard then tells the other two—the blond and the copper-haired men looking at me like lunch.

“Tahoe,” the blonde says.

“Callan,” the copper-haired says.

Saint merely pats the blondes on the butt and sends them on her way, then he reaches out to take my elbow somehow in an instinctive gesture that brings me a strange sense of comfort. I don’t know anybody else here, so when he tugs me to his side, I go down and sit next to him on the edge of the long booth.

And that’s when he leans his dark head over to me and murmurs, “Malcolm.” His voice is so deep and rumbling, I shiver.

“Rachel,” I lamely offer.

He raises his eyebrow and stares at me. What are you doing here, Rachel? he seems to ask.

I’m wondering what to say, when Tahoe lifts his drink and drains it. “You’re up past your bedtime.” The Texan oil baby. Oozing charm, drawling out the words.

I don’t know why but I’m acutely aware of the position of Saint’s body in relation to mine. He just straightened fully in the booth and somehow shifted so his arm is very noticeably stretched out behind me.

“Like they say, no rest for the wicked,” I answer Tahoe with an extra-wide smile, my heart pounding over Saint’s nearness.

Suddenly I can smell him. Just him. Among all the mingled scents in the room, it’s Saint somehow in my lungs, in every breath. He radiates a vitality that draws me like a magnet. It unnerves me but something in his presence, so close to me, soothes me too.

“Apparently there’s a dress code—Saint had to drop his tail and horns at the door,” Callan jokes as a waiter sets a drink before me.

“Oh yes.” I tug the hem of my skirt self-consciously, “I had to drop half my dress.”

“Did you now?” Tahoe asks.

“T.”

One word, one letter, from Malcolm.

“Yeah, Saint?” Tahoe returns, lifting his eyebrows.

“Dibs.”

I almost spit out the drink. I cough and slam my hand to my chest, and Saint calmly reaches out to take my drink from my hand and sets it aside.  “Okay?” he asks, ducking his head and peering into my face.

I give one last cough and squeeze my eyes shut and nod, and when I open my eyes, Saint is the only thing I see. I find him staring at me in such a penetrating way I can feel the stare in my bones.

“Did you just get to the party, Rachel?” he asks.

As he waits for my reply, he reaches for my cocktail and extends the glass out to me. His wrist is thick and looks so strong, so golden, his skin smooth, his arm dusted with a little bit of hair as I cautiously take it from him, our fingers brushing.

Tahoe reaches for his coat pocket and waves whatever he extracted in the air. “Saint! May I?”

Excitement leaps in my chest when I realize it’s the key!

“Not happening, that’s not her scene,” Malcolm murmurs besides me.

“Aw! Come on, let me give her a key. She’s a dime, man,” Tahoe drawls.

I’m so disbelieving, I’m not even breathing as Malcolm slowly stands. I follow him up, staring up into his face in confusion.

“What do you mean it’s not my scene?” I demand. I feel like there’s no gravity when he stands so close to me. I’m dizzy. Confused. And unexpectedly hurt.

For the first time since we met, he looks at me like he’s actually losing his temper…with me. He leans closer and puts his lips close to my ear. “Trust me when I tell you, it’s not your scene. Go home,” he whispers. He sends me a look laden with warning and walks away, blending into the crowd.

Tahoe and Callan stare at me, speechless. “That’s a first,” Tahoe mumbles and heads away.

I feel myself burn in humiliation and confusion. Worse is that, when I go outside, the same man who drove us around the day before walks over to me.

“Miss Livingston, a pleasure to drive you,” he says, hanging up his phone as if Saint just called him. He is a huge man, with a bald head, an earpiece, and no expression. A second later, he’s opening the car door of the Rolls for me.

Seriously?

Did Saint call him just now and ask him to escort me home?

Aware of people staring and seeing me being led to Saint’s car, I climb into the back of the car and I murmur my thanks simply because it’s not this man’s fault.

The car smells new and expensive and, like him. A bottle of wine and water bottles ride with me. There’s music in the background and the temperature is just right. The perfect luxury of it all tempts me to run my hands down my dress and look down at myself in confusion. What is wrong with me?

I feel as if he pulled the rug from under me and reminded me what I’m up against. The top of the species. Somebody ruthless.

I can’t take the heat in the back of my ears and on my cheeks. I sag on the backseat and set my forehead on the window. Focus, Livingston! Exhaling, I grab my phone and try to write down all the details about what I saw, but I can’t right now. I just can’t do anything but ride here, in his car, wondering why I feel so vulnerable.

COMING SOON

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1LG6ThL

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1BYFl1v

Amazon Paperback: http://amzn.to/16oqqTO

Nook: http://tinyurl.com/ngwqaut

B&N Paperback: http://tinyurl.com/kmu4brk

iBooks: http://tinyurl.com/k4ns3pv

BAM: http://tinyurl.com/nxbbrff

IndieBound: http://tinyurl.com/kqcnmxv

Google: http://tinyurl.com/l4c7nnc

 

 

About the Author:

Hey! I’m Katy Evans and I love family, books, life, and love. I’m married with two children and three dogs and spend my time baking, walking, writing, reading, and taking care of my family. Thank you for spending your time with me and picking up my story. I hope you had an amazing time with it, like I did. If you’d like to know more about books in progress, look me up on the Internet, I’d love to hear from you!

 

Website: www.katyevans.net

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKatyEvans

Twitter: https://twitter.com/authorkatyevans

Email: authorkatyevans@gmail.com

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Radio Silence – Alyssa Cole – 5 stars

February 3, 2015 Carina Press, NetGalley, Read in 2015 0 ★★★★★

I received this book for free from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Radio Silence – Alyssa Cole – 5 starsRadio Silence by Alyssa Cole
Published by Carina Press on 2015-02-02
Genres: Apocalyptic & Post-Apocalyptic, Fiction, General, Multicultural & Interracial, New Adult, Romance, Science Fiction
Pages: 169
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley.com
Radio Silence (Off the Grid)<img src="http://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=booaholano0c-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B00N0MYHC2">AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
five-stars
No one expects the apocalypse.

Arden Highmore was living your average postgrad life in Rochester, New York, when someone flipped the "off" switch on the world. No cell phones, no power, no running water—and no one knows why. All she and her roommate, John, know for sure is that they have to get out, stat. His family's cabin near the Canadian border seemed like the safest choice.

It turns out isolation doesn't necessarily equal safety.

When scavengers attack, it's John's ridiculously handsome brother, Gabriel, who comes to the rescue. He saves Arden's life, so he can't be all bad…but he's also a controlling jerk who treats her like an idiot. Now their parents are missing and it seems John, Gabriel, their kid sister, Maggie, and Arden are the only people left alive who aren't bloodthirsty maniacs.

No one knows when—or if—the lights will come back on and, in the midst of all that, Arden and Gabriel are finding that there's a fine line indeed between love and hate. How long can they expect to last in this terrifying new world, be it together or apart?

Book one of Off the Grid

69,000 words

I have to give credit to both Alisha Rai and Bree for getting me to notice and read this title.  I hadn’t really paid attention to it until I saw them on Twitter gushing about the title and then I needed to read it.  I am so glad I took a chance on it because it was AMAZING.

My review is not going to do this justice but you really need to take a chance on this title because:

  1. We have a strong heroine, Arden, who is struggling with finding her place in this new reality.  She’s honest about her issues but also is very open to change.  I loved her struggle with guilt about not spending time with her parents but appreciated that she didn’t use that as an excuse to fall apart.  She is a good person to have on your side because even with everything that is going bad in the world she won’t let it keep her down.  She’s tough, caring and oh so a match for…
  2. Gabriel… dear lord is this man HOT.  I loved his surly exterior as he becomes the man in charge and tries to keep everything as normal as possible in a world where nothing is the way it should be.  Answers are not forthcoming from the outside world but he is not one to fall apart.  His surliness masks a really sweet man who truly loves his family and is fascinated by Arden even as he growls at her like he can’t stand her.  There is so much to this man and I enjoyed getting to see his personality over the course of the story.
  3. John…  bless his heart..  He’s such a sweet, funny man who brought some much needed laughter as he realizes he has NO SOCIAL MEDIA or ELECTRONIC GAMES…  I mean what the HELL man…  How can we all survive without Twitter….  He’s also a good foil for the intensity of Gabriel.
  4. Maggie is also available as a bit of drama but also a nice resource for Arden in this world gone wrong.  I liked how strong she is even as young as she is.  She’s very smart in many ways but we get to see her vulnerability as she struggles with missing her parents and worrying about a boy she was starting to know via social media.  I liked how she showed that she was capable of being more than just the kid sister who needs coddling although I wanted to hurt her when she did something incredibly stupid.

Overall this book kept me enthralled not only because of the sheer chemistry between our main pair but because of the world that they find themselves in.  I want to know more about what exactly is going on … I mean we don’t know exactly what happened or how widespread it is or…. seriously you will be wanting more more more as you read this just because we don’t know.  I look forward to more of this series and will be keeping a close eye out.  I’m also going to be *ahem* slightly stalking Alyssa in order to find out about more stories from her as she kept me engaged every step of the way thru this one.

GO GRAB THIS ONE NOW!!!

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Cover Reveal – Moment of Truth – Karen Stivali

February 2, 2015 Cover Reveal 0

MomentofTruth large cover

 

BLURB:

Collin expected to spend another summer fixing cars and working at the college pizzeria. Instead, he’s living in a beach house on Fire Island, waiting tables at a hip seaside restaurant and, for the first time since he and Tanner got together, they can publicly be known as boyfriends. Being “out” takes some getting used to, but with the help of new and old friends, Collin is happier than he ever imagined. And more in love. But newfound freedom brings unexpected challenges, and when friends get flirty, old insecurities arise. Moments of doubt and jealousy threaten their happiness, and Collin and Tanner must confront the truth or risk losing it all.

Preorder it here.

BIO:

Karen Stivali is a prolific writer, compulsive baker and chocoholic with a penchant for books, movies, and fictional British men. She’s also the multiple award-winning author of contemporary and erotic romances. She writes novels about love…like real life, only hotter.

Karen’s lifelong fascination with people has led her to careers ranging from hand-drawn animator, to party planner, to marriage and family counselor, but writing has always been her passion. Karen enjoys nothing more than following her characters on their journey toward love. Whether the couples are m/f or m/m, it’s guaranteed that Karen’s novels are filled with food, friendship, love, and smoking hot sex—all the best things in life.

When Karen isn’t writing (and often when she is), she can be found on Twitter attempting witty banter and detailing the antics of her fruit-loving cat, BadKitteh. She loves to hear from readers (and other writers), so don’t hesitate to contact/follow/like her at:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/karenstivali

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/karenstivali

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/karenstivali/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5170527.Karen_Stivali

Tsu: https://www.tsu.co/KarenStivali

Blog: http://karenstivali.com

Be sure to check out the first one in the series which I reviewed here.

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Karen-Stivali/e/B005KWSFGO/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_2

AmazonUK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Karen-Stivali/e/B005KWSFGO/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

AmazonCA: http://www.amazon.ca/Moment-Impact-Moments-Time-Book-ebook/dp/B00RO1Z6ZC/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1422304920&sr=1-1

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/karen-stivali?store=allproducts&keyword=karen+stivali

All Romance E-books: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-momentofimpact-1700287-340.html

Dreamspinner Press: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/AuthorArcade/karen-stivali

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Edged Blade Tour – Welcome J.C. Daniels aka Shiloh Walker!!!!

February 2, 2015 Guest Post, Tours 10

Ok for those of you who are looking for a kick-ass heroine who has been taken thru hell and is still one of the strongest characters I have read…. Well why aren’t you reading Kit!!!  She’s something else and taking us on this journey has been J.C. Daniels aka Shiloh Walker who excels at ripping my heart out and shredding it to pieces no matter which name she’s writing under.  I had the chance to ask her a few questions and I hope you like her answers even as I repeated a question just cause dammit enquiring minds (Ok maybe just mine…) need the answers…  LOL

 

Question 1:  How much fun have you had torturing your readers with the journey you have taken Kit thru thus far?

Ah…well, I don’t do it just to torture readers.  Honestly, I’m just telling the stories that play out in my head, basically the way Kit tells them to me.

Question 2:  Are you going to let Justin find his mate?  I mean come on the man deserves it.

Right now, I’m focusing on Kit’s story.  Whether or not anything ever happens with Justin, we’ll just have to wait and see.  prime example of her ways to torture us…  LOL sc

Question 3:  If you had the chance to rewrite any (and I mean any) book or work in history what would it be?

Ah… the only books I’m any good at writing are mine, and I can only write the books I’ve written the way they wanted to be written.

Question 4:  I find myself consistently amazed at how much heart and backstory you fit in to your books, how do the ideas come to you?

I mentioned earlier that write the books as they come to me–I tend to do more ‘narrating’… the characters are pretty much in my head, living out their stories and I’m just writing down what happens as it happens.

Question 5:  Be honest…  How much fun is torturing your readers by making them go thru some really difficult times with your characters?  You don’t seem to shy away from any tough subjects.

Well, I don’t write anything just to torture readers. These are just the way the stories play out in my head–bad things do happen.  When one of my stories decide they are going to have something rough happen, I tackle it.  I’m not doing my story justice by shying away from whatever it is and it’s short-changing readers as well.
I personally have enjoyed this series even as it tore me apart…  I love an author that isn’t afraid to go there but also brings it about in a way that is honest to both the story and characters that inhabit the world that is created.  While I might curse them occasionally I appreciate the craft involved in making us so invested in the story.

Edge Blade

20487530

Amazon | BN | iBooks

In the year since her life was torn apart, Kit Colbana has slowly rebuilt herself. There’s a promise of hope in the relationship with the alpha of the local shapeshifters and she no longer comes screaming into wakefulness. Life’s not perfect but then again, when was it ever?

When her best friend Justin comes to her for help, there’s little question as to what her answer will be. Witches are disappearing and Justin won’t rest until he has answers. Soon, they learn that it’s not just witches who’ve gone missing, but vampires and shifters, too.

Unlikely alliances are forged as Kit and Justin found themselves drawn into a twisted web of lies and betrayal. As the clock counts down and the culprit behind recent disappearances is revealed, those Kit loves the most become the target of somebody who will kill to protect an ugly secret.

 

Shiloh Walker - author pic, photographer Ayrica BishopAbout JC:

J.C. Daniels is the alter ego of author Shiloh Walker and was created basically because Shiloh writes like a hyperactive bunny and an intervention was necessary. J.C. is the intervention. The name… J.C. Daniels is a play off of the three people who pretty much run Shiloh’s life.

Professional Bio

J.C./Shiloh Walker has been writing since she was a kid. She fell in love with vampires with the book Bunnicula and has worked her way up to the more…ah…serious works of fiction. She loves reading and writing just about every kind of romance. Once upon a time she worked as a nurse, but now she writes full time and lives with her family in the Midwest. She writes urban fantasy, romantic suspense and paranormal romance, among other things.

You can learn more and connect with JC here website| Facebook | twitter and Goodreads

*****

Contest info

Read on for a chance to win either a Kindle Fire or a tea set and some of the loose leaf tea that Kit would drink…if she was real. ;)

Read more

Haven’t read the Colbana Files? You can check books 1-3, now available in a boxed set.

Enter to win one of two prizes by J.C. Daniels. A Kindle Fire or a tea set—including a mix of Kit’s favorite tea, as well as download of books 1-3. Enter via the widget below. Be sure to check back and see if you’ve won and check out the rest of the participating blogs!

**Two winners from the blog tour, in random order, will be drawn. In the event a non-US winner is drawn for the tea set, a GC of equal value will be substituted. Apologies, but customs can be evil.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Rocky Retreat – Vivian Arend – 4.5 stars – Contest

January 30, 2015 Contest, Read in 2015, Sent 2 ★★★★½

I received this book for free from the Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Rocky Retreat – Vivian Arend – 4.5 stars – ContestRocky Retreat Published by VIvian Arend on January 13, 2015
Format: eARC
Source: the Author
AmazonBarnes & Noble four-half-stars
Finding white-hot love in a white-out…

Eight months ago, Lee Coleman met the woman of his dreams…then lost her to another man. He buried his disappointment by throwing himself into work on the family ranch, but when a winter storm leaves him stranded, Lee finds more than shelter in the rustic safety of a hunter’s cabin—he finds a second shot at love.

Rachel Malone’s heart has been broken and stomped on by her cheating ex, and she’s determined to never fall in love again. But a rebound fling? Doesn’t sound like such a bad idea, especially when she’s snowed-in with a gorgeous, sweet-talking Coleman.

Despite their off-the-charts chemistry, Lee makes it clear he wants more than a temporary romp. In fact, he’s made it his mission to put a smile back on her face, even if it means taking it slow and resisting the scorching heat between them. This time around, he wants forever, while Rachel is positive that forever is a fool’s dream.

Lee can’t wait to prove her wrong…

This story is a part of a box set – Cowboys Last All Night – that is available now and are the links on the site at this time.  This title will be released on its own on February 17th but hey multiple stories for 99 cents..  YAY!!!  I haven’t read the others yet but grabbed my own copy of the box set for later consumption.

 

Once again Viv gives us a story with heart and heat where a yummy cowboy finally has a chance to get the woman he thought could never be his.

I loved this chance for a younger man to show an older woman that not only is he the man for her but he isn’t just a rebound.  He wants all she is not just a chance at having her in his bed.  I truly enjoyed seeing Lee manage to control his need for Rachel by taking things slow.  He was the one to put a stop on their scorching interlude in the cabin but it definitely isn’t because he doesn’t want her.  He wants her to truly understand that he’s playing for keeps no matter how badly she wants this to just be a recover from the asshole ex sort of thing.

I enjoyed seeing him show Rachel how much he cared for her by just being there for her at every chance he got.  He’s trying to take it slow since she just had a disastrous marriage but his taking it slow gives her time to second guess everything.  She’s conflicted as she struggles to come to terms with falling for a man who cheated on her before the ink was even down on their marriage license and now a man that is much younger than her seems to want her?  I understood her struggle with body issues and the whole age thing as it impacts many of us.  I was happy that Lee showed her repeatedly that he wanted her …  just her… and age, body type and other things just weren’t a big deal to him.

This is a warm yet sexy story about a strong woman finding her real partner with a man that she not only deserves but needs.  Both characters show their connection in not only words but in actions in and outside of the bedroom.  I enjoyed this installment in the series and look forward to more!

Ok…  I am starting a new Friday tradition here at the blog…  On each Friday I will do a review or post that will have a giveaway that will be mainly paper copies but at times could be e-copies or other items that just strike my fancy.  This first giveaway is a signed paperback copy of Vivian Arend’s High Seduction and some miscellaneous swag including lip balm and a bottle opener.  To enter just comment if you’ve ever read one of her stories or if you’ve ever been invisible to someone you have crushed on.  Entries must be received by Wednesday, February 4, 2015 at 11:59 pm US Central.  I will draw a winner then so GOOD LUCK!!!

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The Distraction – Sierra Kincade – 4 stars – Contest

January 29, 2015 Berkley Trade, Contest, Read in 2015, Sent 4 ★★★★

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Distraction – Sierra Kincade – 4 stars – ContestThe Distraction by Sierra Kincade
Published by Berkley Publishing Group on 2015-02-03
Genres: Contemporary, Fiction, General, Literary, Romance
Pages: 352
Format: Paperback
Source: the publisher
The Distraction (The Body Work Trilogy Book 2)<img src="http://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=booaholano0c-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B00L9AXY7G">AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
four-stars
The seductive story that started in The Masseuse continues...

Anna Rossi knows that opening your heart only gets you hurt. But Alec Flynn is just too good to resist…

It’s been three long months since Anna’s seen Alec, since he saved her life and lit up her soul with unquenchable desire. Being without him has left her on edge, but his bravery has motivated her to change her life and go after what she’s always wanted—a job where she can help people. She can’t wait to show Alec the woman she’s become in his absence, or to prove how much she’s missed him…

Three months away has done nothing to slake Alec’s need for Anna. Unfortunately, it hasn’t made his life any less dangerous. The last thing he wants to do is hurt Anna, but if giving her up is the only way to save her, he’s not sure he can do that either. He’s determined to have her for as long as he can. Except his past is creeping up on him faster than he knows, and this time he may not be able to keep her from becoming collateral damage…

I just can’t give up on this story even as things in the relationship between Anna and Alec set off big old warning bells in my head.  She’s obsessed with him so ignores everything and everyone who is concerned about how much pain he has brought to her just by being involved with her.  I get it but at the same time there is something that isn’t healthy about their relationship but circumstances are what is causing a majority of the issues as they can’t spend much needed time getting to know one another outside of their amazing chemistry.

I enjoyed this installment more than the previous one because we did get to see how much they truly need one another outside of the bedroom.  Alec is willing to do so much in order to protect Anna and you can feel how badly this whole mess is hurting him because he knows it is killing her.  He’s growly and protective but I did get a bit fed up with his inability to just lay his cards out on the table in the name of protecting her.  Honesty is something they both desperately need but both of them keep so much from one another that it causes conflict every single time it is revealed.  I got why he did it..  I honestly did but at some point I would hope that he would just realize that it always comes out in the worst way possible.

Anna is stronger in this story than the previous one and I appreciated that immensely.  I liked the spine we got to see as she stands up for herself in most ways and definitely does so in the end.  I look forward to seeing more of this side of her develop and hope that the conclusion will keep her spine stiff enough to not settle for anything less than she deserves.  Her willingness to see the good in people is severely tested in this story and my hope is she will still be open to people but a bit more open to listening to her inner self when something isn’t quite right with the facade presented to her.

Overall I enjoyed this one and hope that we not only get the final resolution for Anna/Alec but also get to see Amy happy with ummmm well read this one and you’ll see who I hope she can find happiness with.  She and her daughter deserve happiness and I’d love to see it with XXX…. *snicker*

 

So I’m going to start something new with this review…  In this case my review copy was a paper copy provided by the wonderful people at Penguin/Berkeley Publishing and I am running out of space to keep every single copy of a book that I get no matter how much I love them so…  You get to start winning some of them…  YAY!!!  In this case to win my copy of this book comment below by Wednesday, February 4 at 11:59 pm US Central with something you’ve done in the name of love/lust/extreme like that isn’t something you would normally even consider doing….  

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One Night of Trouble – Elle Kennedy – 4.5 stars

January 28, 2015 Entangled Publishing, Read in 2015, Sent 0 ★★★★½

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

One Night of Trouble – Elle Kennedy – 4.5 starsOne Night of Trouble (Entangled Brazen) by Elle Kennedy
Published by Macmillan on 2015-01-05
Genres: Contemporary, Fiction, General, Romance
Pages: 237
Format: eARC
Source: the publisher
One Night of Trouble (Entangled Brazen) (After Hours)<img src="http://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=booaholano0c-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B00R19EZH2">AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads
four-half-stars

A sexy category romance from Entangled's Brazen imprint...

No More Mr. Nice Guy…

The moment AJ Walsh sees the sexy, tattooed pixie walk up to his bar, it's lust at first sight. He's always been labeled the "nice" guy―opening doors, buying flowers, and never, ever having one-night stands. But with this wicked little angel with red lips and unfathomably dark eyes? Oh, yeah. Tonight, "nice" has nothing to do with it...

Brett Conlon is trying to convince her family that she's put away her reckless wild girl side for good. Nothing―and no one―could be better for her reputation than golden boy AJ Walsh. So they make a deal: if he plays The Good Boyfriend for her family, he can be a very, very bad boy with her. Now their one naughty night is about to turn into a whole lot of trouble...

I can’t believe January is almost over already…  This means that my month of Elle Kennedy is at an end but you can still try to enter the wonderful contest by checking out my first post this month – here.

I’ve enjoyed each of these stories and am not ready to give these guys up but hey that’s what rereads are for right????

AJ has always been the good guy you can count on.  On the surface he’s perfect from opening doors, paying and in general being a gentleman but…. he’s BLAND…. Yes I said it..  sex on a stick with an MMA past and the man is ummmmm boring.  Well unless you look a bit deeper… if you look deeper you get a man that is a bad boy in all ways with a heart of gold that just needs someone to kick his ass and show him that he’s worthy even if he’s always tried to live up to a memory.  I liked his good boy side but dammit GIVE ME THE BAD BOY!!!!!  I loved why he was behaving the way he was but it wasn’t fair to him or his family because everyone was losing out on the wonderful man kept in check for fear of disappointing them.  He also was good for Brett as he showed her that a little bit of a wild streak wasn’t a bad thing.

Brett has her own issues…  She wants to be seen as responsible and capable of running her own location of the family tattoo chain.  She’s smart and funny but made mistakes in trusting someone who wasn’t good for her.  She’s a bit impulsive when we first meet her but trying hard to keep that side of her under lock and key but this man just calls to her wild side and she can’t keep him at arm’s length for long.  She knows AJ as the golden child as she went to school (a couple of years behind) with him and always had a bit of a crush on him.  As she gets to know the man inside the image she finds that maybe they can help one another out but they aren’t really building anything real …  or are they??

There’s something wonderful about discovering who you really are and getting someone that not only gets the real you but celebrates it.  I enjoyed seeing them both find their match and themselves in this story.  Now…  what to read next???

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