Before the Fall – Noah Hawley – 4 stars

June 4, 2016 Grand Central, Read in 2016 1

Before the Fall – Noah Hawley – 4 starsBefore the Fall - FREE PREVIEW (Prologue and Chapter 1) by Noah Hawley
Published by Grand Central Publishing on January 19th 2016
Genres: Fiction, Literary, Thrillers, Suspense
Pages: 34
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four-stars

From the Emmy, PEN, Peabody, Critics' Choice, and Golden Globe Award-winning creator of the TV show Fargo comes the thriller of the year.

On a foggy summer night, eleven people-ten privileged, one down-on-his-luck painter-depart Martha's Vineyard on a private jet headed for New York. Sixteen minutes later, the unthinkable happens: the plane plunges into the ocean. The only survivors are Scott Burroughs-the painter-and a four-year-old boy, who is now the last remaining member of an immensely wealthy and powerful media mogul's family.

With chapters weaving between the aftermath of the crash and the backstories of the passengers and crew members-including a Wall Street titan and his wife, a Texan-born party boy just in from London, a young woman questioning her path in life, and a career pilot-the mystery surrounding the tragedy heightens. As the passengers' intrigues unravel, odd coincidences point to a conspiracy. Was it merely by dumb chance that so many influential people perished? Or was something far more sinister at work? Events soon threaten to spiral out of control in an escalating storm of media outrage and accusations. And while Scott struggles to cope with fame that borders on notoriety, the authorities scramble to salvage the truth from the wreckage.

Amid pulse-quickening suspense, the fragile relationship between Scott and the young boy glows at the heart of this stunning novel, raising questions of fate, human nature, and the inextricable ties that bind us together.

This was an interesting book showing how things can change in a blink of an eye and what you think was true maybe wasn’t so true after all.

We have one couple that seem to love one another but his drive keeps him away from them most of the time.  They’ve stood the test of a child abduction but perhaps things aren’t as happy as they seem.  The glimpses we get of this couple and their daughter were moving in many ways as we get to see a sense of what might’ve been if the plane hadn’t gone down.  You also feel a huge sense of sadness that JJ doesn’t get to have more time with his mom.  I liked what we got to see of her and how much she truly loved her kids but still seemed to not be comfortable in the world she stumbled in to.  Her husband also seemed to be a good man under the drive and seeing what happened after the crash while knowing what happened on his last day in his office made me wonder what if…

We have a couple that to me never seemed to be in synch even in the glimpses we got of them from before the crash.  The tidbits made me wonder what made them get together in the first place?  What kept them together other than appearances?  At the same time we see how they lived just before the crash and this makes you wonder what really plays out behind closed doors both on a professional level and a personal one?  I wanted to know more about how he got started on the path he was on…  what might’ve come out if the crash didn’t happen… wanted to know more about the others who had a hand in it… I just wanted more.

We have the man who just happened to barely make the plane and wasn’t really supposed to be on there.  How he used a memory from childhood to save himself and JJ.  How this accident and quirk of fate took him down a path he couldn’t imagine but one that he was uniquely suited for.  I liked Scott.  I truly liked him and appreciated how he moved thru this event while not letting others dictate his path.  I loved how he seemed to be more present than anyone else in the story and didn’t hide away from the truth as it was presented to him.  I appreciated how he saw things others didn’t see but also didn’t claim to know all the answers.  He just was….. I’d love to see where he goes and how JJ grows up….

There are other characters that weave around this story and seeing their parts play out made this an interesting read.  You are pulled in various directions, across various time periods but it all makes sense as the acts play out.  I appreciated this as we got to see the lives interrupted… lives cut short because..

Yeah you thought I would give away the details of what happens but honestly that would wreck it.  Take a chance and read this…  I know I’m glad I grabbed it while at BEA as it kept me entranced as these stories played out.

four-stars

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Everywhere and Every Way – Jennifer Probst – 4 stars

June 3, 2016 Gallery Books 1

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

Everywhere and Every Way – Jennifer Probst – 4 starsEverywhere and Every Way by Jennifer Probst
Published by Gallery Books on May 31st 2016
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Contemporary Women, General
Pages: 384
Source: NetGalley.com
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four-stars

Hot on the heels of her beloved Marriage to a Billionaire novels, New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Probst nails it with the first in an all-new sexy romance series featuring red-hot contractor siblings who give the Property Brothers a run for their money!

Ever the responsible eldest brother, Caleb Pierce started working for his father’s luxury contracting business at a young age, dreaming of one day sitting in the boss’s chair. But his father’s will throws a wrench in his plans by stipulating that Caleb share control of the family business with his two estranged brothers.

Things only get more complicated when demanding high-end home designer Morgan hires Caleb to build her a customized dream house that matches her specifications to a T—or she’ll use her powerful connections to poison the Pierce brothers’ reputation. Not one to ignore a challenge, Caleb vows to get the job done—if only he can stop getting distracted by his new client’s perfect…amenities.

But there’s more to icy Morgan than meets the eye. And Caleb’s not the only one who knows how to use a stud-finder. In fact, Morgan is pretty sure she’s found hers—and he looks quite enticing in a hard hat. As sparks fly between Morgan and Caleb despite his best intentions not to mix business and pleasure, will she finally warm up and help him lay the foundation for everlasting love?

I was approached with this title just before the crazy whirlwind that was BEA.  I then proceeded to get pneumonia and forgot to get back to the publicists with my email address that I use for NetGalley but…. They thankfully took my plea for the title and sent me the link to grab this from NetGalley so here we go.  I had another title in front of it but once I started it I was hooked.

Imagine living your life trying to make your dad finally be happy.  Imagine not being completely true to yourself but living a sort of half-life as you struggle to finally get approval… If you can imagine that you have a lot of what Caleb is going thru as we open this book.  He then not only loses his dad he also is confronted with the fact that he now has to find a way to work with his two estranged brothers in order to save what he had made his life.  There is so much pain, hurt and sheer stubbornness holding the boys apart that you will want to just slap them but at the same time as the whole story unfolds you understand it.  Caleb is all strong, sexy MINE male but we see how much of a true softie he is.  He’ll make you swoon and let’s be honest ladies…  If you are lucky enough to find a man you are just barely getting involved with that says stubble is just fine…  well hell..  instant melt.  I mean we all know that spending time shaving our legs isn’t our favorite thing but we also all know that for a new relationship or just fling we go the extra mile for smooth baby smooth.

Morgan made me happy with her fight, softness and general kick-ass personality so I enjoyed getting to see her hold her own against all the men.  I also felt for her when her story comes out as that would cause most women to give up hope but she’s so much more than that.  She tried so hard to keep him at bay but there is something that just is with her and Caleb so you will enjoy seeing her lose the battle.  The first scene in the bar cracked me up and her reaction afterwards was immensely satisfying.  I also enjoyed how she just fit with them and wasn’t afraid to wade in to the tension between the boys but also knew she had to let them figure it out between themselves.

Now…  I have to admit I am looking forward to the next story but honestly… the final brother will make me happy if what I think is true is true.  If it is true you will not be able to keep me from that book even if I am in the middle of something else.  The next book will prove painful I’m sure but if my hunch plays out then book 3 will just be ANGST CITY….. *sigh*

I also admit to being jealous of the work they were doing and could imagine the artistry that they created in the house.  I did have the chance to meet The Property Brothers while I was at BEA and found myself laughing as they were mentioned.  I’m pretty sure they would enjoy the fact that they were mentioned in here as they definitely have the sense of humor to enjoy it.

four-stars

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The Pages of the Mind – Jeffe Kennedy – 4.5 stars

June 2, 2016 Kensington, NetGalley, Read in 2016 1

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

The Pages of the Mind – Jeffe Kennedy – 4.5 starsThe Pages of the Mind by Jeffe Kennedy
Published by Kensington on May 31, 2016
Genres: Fiction, Fantasy, Romantic, Romance, Action & Adventure, Historical, Science Fiction
Pages: 432
Source: NetGalley.com
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four-half-stars

An Orphan's Throne

Magic has broken free over the Twelve Kingdoms. The population is beset by shapeshifters and portents, landscapes that migrate, uncanny allies who are not quite human…and enemies eager to take advantage of the chaos.

Dafne Mailloux is no adventurer--she's a librarian. But the High Queen trusts Dafne's ability with languages, her way of winnowing the useful facts from a dusty scroll, and even more important, the subtlety and guile that three decades under the thumb of a tyrant taught her.

Dafne never thought to need those skills again. But she accepts her duty. Until her journey drops her into the arms of a barbarian king. He speaks no tongue she knows but that of power, yet he recognizes his captive as a valuable pawn. Dafne must submit to a wedding of alliance, becoming a prisoner-queen in a court she does not understand. If she is to save herself and her country, she will have to learn to read the heart of a wild stranger. And there are more secrets written there than even Dafne could suspect…

I love this world.  There I said it.  This world makes me so happy and I was extremely excited to see that we would have more stories about it with new people to fall in love with.

Dafne spoke to me with her tendency to be hidden in the background and comfort in books.  She’s not much of a people person but those she allows close mean the world to her.  She takes her word very seriously but yearns to have something of her own that she convinces herself she will never have.  As she finally gets out on an adventure we get to see exactly who she is and what she is made of as she is faced with the chance to have more.  I loved seeing her struggle to understand what was happening to her but mainly loved her finally owning who she is and what she deserves.  She’s going on such a journey in this story so sit back and enjoy the ride.

Nakoa is just amazing.  I have to say he might beat Harlan in sigh-worthy moves but both of them have a special place in my book boyfriend heart.  He can’t speak her language but he still manages to show her how much she means to him and that they were always meant for one another even though she had never met him.  There is something about a man that is so powerful being so soft for his lady that just does it for me.  There is something else about him that does it for me and that I will leave to you to discover but suffice it to say he’s incredibly sweet and sensual but that isn’t even what I am referring to.  If you want to know what it is just message me and I will spoil for you but only if you seek me out.  I loved reading that moment and knowing what it means to them made it so much more than a simple moment.

This story continues from where we left the Kingdoms with more of the world to explore and find out.  I look forward to our next pair because that will be incendiary to say the least.  The way that we get to see so many people from the other stories made me very happy.

four-half-stars

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Until November – Aurora Rose Reynolds – 3.5 stars

May 31, 2016 Read in 2016 1

Until November – Aurora Rose Reynolds – 3.5 starsUntil November by Aurora Rose Reynolds
Published by Aurora Rose Reynolds Genres: Fiction, Romance, New Adult, Erotica, General
Pages: 250
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three-half-stars
five-flames

November is looking forward to getting to know her father and the safety of a small town. After leaving the big apple and her bad memories for Tennessee, November starts working for her dad at his strip club doing the books. The one time she’s allowed there during club hours she runs into Asher Mayson. He’s perfect until he opens his mouth and makes assumptions. November wants nothing to do with Asher but too bad for November fate has other plans. Asher Mayson has never had a problem getting a woman that is until November. Now all he can think about is making November his and keeping her safe.

THIS IS NOT A CLIFF HANGER.
Newly Edited and Updated Version
*Recommended for mature audiences 17+ due to strong language and sexual content.*

If you want a quick, hot read that will make you laugh a few times as the main pair come to terms with one another, well this one is for you.   It is a very hot read with the teasing and tension hitting the moment they meet but when they finally act on it… yeah… *fans self*

I loved Beast from the moment we meet him and seeing his reactions to people just managed to crack me up.  You’ll love him as well and I hope that as I finally read this series we get to see him a bit more.

November hasn’t had the best of lives with a mother that so seriously needed to get much worse than she got but hey karma will get back at her later.  I liked how November took the hits but kept fighting to be loved and to stand on her own feet.  She isn’t weak nor is she stupid but man oh man does she NOT know what to make of Asher.  Her interactions with his family and her own new-to-her family made me both laugh and feel for her as she finally gets something that she never had growing up…  unconditional love and acceptance.  I appreciated that she didn’t want to be weak but wanted to be kept in the loop no matter how hard it might be to hear.  She also was a great blend of a woman who loves girlie things but also is willing to get dirty (yep in many different ways) if the occasion calls for it.

Asher started off as a bit of an ass.  You aren’t sure what to make of him and then you start to get more information about who he is, what makes him tick and the family “curse” which then makes you adore him.  He’s very driven to protect what is HIS even as he can’t quite make her understand that he isn’t kidding.  I appreciated getting the look at how much he values family and truly understands what it means to want to provide for those  you love.  He made me so happy and so mad many times during the story but that is a good thing as some of the storyline honestly made me roll my eyes.

I didn’t really care for the “suspense” part of the story as it was very cheesy but otherwise the main pair made me very happy and I will be looking for more in the series.

three-half-stars

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Mr. and Mr. Smith – HelenKay Dimon – 5 stars

May 26, 2016 Read in 2016 1

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

Mr. and Mr. Smith – HelenKay Dimon – 5 starsMr. and Mr. Smith by HelenKay Dimon
Published by Random House Publishing Group on May 24th 2016
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Military, LGBT, Gay
Pages: 210
Source: NetGalley.com
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five-stars
five-flames

Secrets and seduction make for an explosive combination in HelenKay Dimon’s edgy, thrilling new series, which kicks off with a novel about two men who can handle any threat—except the one posed by desire.

Fisher Braun knows how to keep a secret. As a covert paramilitary operative, his job—and his life—depends on it. He’s at the top of his game, ready for action and always in control. No enemy has ever brought him to his knees, but one lover has: Zachary Allen, the man currently sharing his bed. The perfect package of brains and brawn, Zach is someone worth coming home to, and Fisher hates keeping him in the dark about what he does. But the lies keep Zach safe. Until the day Fisher loses everything. . . .

Zachary Allen is no innocent civilian. Although he plays the tech geek, in reality he’s deep undercover for the CIA. In a horrible twist of fate, the criminal enterprise he’s infiltrated has set its sights on the man whose touch drives him wild. Zach would do anything for Fisher—except blow his own cover. Now, in order to save him, Zach must betray him first. And he needs Fisher to trust him with all his heart if they want to make it out alive.

Includes a special message from the editor, as well as an excerpt from another Loveswept title.

What do you get when you have two men who have an abundance of chemistry?  You get this book and all the sexy man on sexy man action that it contains.  All I have to say is “MORE MORE MORE CAN I HAZ MORE????”

We start by getting to see Fisher in the middle of his worst nightmare come to life.  He’s going to find out that what he thought was bad is infinitely so much worse than he could’ve ever imagined.  He’s such a hard soul to get to know but what this is hiding is a man who needs someone to just STAY.  He needs someone to love him for everything that he thinks he isn’t but is and show him that he can be their everything.  I loved how much he struggled with what happens but loved that HelenKay didn’t make him fold immediately.  We get to see someone truly struggle with what he feels, thinks he knows and projects on others around him because of his history.  His angst and struggle made everything hard on both men but honestly there wasn’t another way for this to play out.  If the struggle didn’t happen then nothing else would’ve worked.

Zach is having to do the one thing he never wanted to do but, like Fisher, he is struggling with his past.  He’s also struggling because he made a choice that has led to this breaking point even though there really wasn’t another way for this to go with who he is at his core.  You can feel how hard he just wants Fisher to listen to him, to believe him and to accept him but there’s also an undercurrent that he expects the worst.  His interactions with the team and Fisher will have you turning pages quickly because you want to know how this plays out.

The sexual tension between the men has a tendency to explode on the page which will keep you fanning yourself as you try to cool down but keep reading.  I also loved the storyline outside of the love story and need more about this especially H&W. *HINT HINT*  I mean if that gets told it’ll be something else because I think there is going to be an interesting twist there.  The whole idea of this organization existing even in its damaged state is something that will cause some havoc and seeing the team flush all of the rot out would be fun to read about.

Thank you to HelenKay and to her agent Laura Bradford because if Fisher and Zach didn’t make it to the page it would’ve been a great loss to readers.  These two were amazing to read!

five-stars

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Beyond Ecstasy – Kit Rocha – 5 Stars

May 25, 2016 Read in 2016, Sent 1

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

Beyond Ecstasy – Kit Rocha – 5 StarsBeyond Ecstasy by Kit Rocha
Published by Kit Rocha on May 23, 2016
Source: the Author
Buy on Amazon
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five-stars

The O’Kanes have a reputation for working hard and playing harder—except for Hawk. He joined the gang with one goal: to ensure his family’s survival through the impending war with Eden. It’s been years since he had the luxury of wanting anything for himself. Now, he wants Jeni. From the first moment he saw her, he’s been obsessed with making her his. Not for a night—forever.

Jeni’s been lusting after the former smuggler for months, but he keeps shutting her down. She’s almost given up on getting him in her bed when he offers her the last thing she ever expected—a collar. Accepting it means belonging to him, body and soul. It’s a reckless gamble, but Jeni can’t resist the chance to slip under Hawk’s armor.

The only thing more shocking than the dark, dangerous pleasure they discover is how right it feels. But falling in love is even more reckless when forever is far from guaranteed. Because they aren’t just at war, they’re out of time—and every breath could be their last.

Excuse me while I go whimper in a corner for a while after reading this book.  There are a couple of reasons for this – this is book 8 of 9… *sobs* …. and I swear Kit Rocha is trying to KILL ME.  I MEAN SERIOUSLY TEAR MY HEART OUT OF MY CHEST AND KILL ME!!!

via GIPHY

I mean seriously…  rip my heart out with a single freaking word then just stomp on it.

I can’t really do this book justice with a review because it was just that wonderful but I am going to do a quick list of supplies for this and just leave you with them and…

READ IT NOW DAMMIT… If you don’t well hell you are missing out on EVERYTHING>>>  ALL THE FEELS!!!

  • Have Kleenex on hand
  • Don’t read in public after the 50% mark (not giving you exact point but let’s just say be safe you should perhaps not read in public at all)
  • Schedule recovery time
  • Find a happy place after the story to reflect and get back to a normal heart rate before you go out in public again
  • Take a moment to have a treat (I personally had a fruit pop to recoup *note that I had no chocolate*)
  • I should put —- HAVE A TREAT READY… so maybe this should be first….
  • Try not to think of how you need to ask a significant other to maybe act out a couple of things.. *hmmmm got distracted for a sec remembering what of the things might be fun*
  • Did I mention Kleenex?  Seriously dude ONE FLIPPING WORD….

Hmmmmm….. also where did I put the flogger???  LMAO

But honestly, Kit Rocha once again managed to both rip my heart out and give me the story that made me happy sigh at the end.  Hawk and Jeni were such a wonderful pair to get to know even as the world as we know it rips apart.

And ummmmmm… when a certain someone gets his story (no not book 9 but trust me this one’ll be AWESOME) I need to have it ASAP but also need to make sure to take the day off so I can read/recover without interruption from real life.  He’s going to be AMAZING.

five-stars

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House of Payne: Steele – Stacy Gail – 4.5 Stars

May 24, 2016 Read in 2016, Sent 2

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

House of Payne: Steele – Stacy Gail – 4.5 StarsHouse of Payne: Steele by Stacy Gail
on May 1, 2016
Pages: 348
Source: the Author
Buy on Amazon
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four-half-stars

TRIGGER WARNING: This book deals with the sensitive subjects of surviving rape, trauma suffered during combat, child abuse, and possible sterility. If you have issues with these elements, this book might not be for you.

Raped. Tortured. Beaten. Essie Santiago’s life fell apart when she was sixteen, and it’s taken eight years to put it back together. There are some pieces that can never be mended; it would take a miracle for her to get pregnant, and physical closeness is something that makes her shudder. Only her love of creating beauty in the form of fashion gets her through the worst of the darkness.

When a mortar attack destroyed half his face and all of his life as he knew it, something vital died inside of former Marine, Ezekiel Steele. For years he’s felt nothing… until he sees Essie trying her best to be invisible. But the feisty spark inside the lovely fashion designer is too bright to be concealed, and like a moth to a flame, he’s helpless to resist her.

Chicago’s premiere tattoo studio, House Of Payne, is taking the world of fashion by storm, holding a contest to find the best designer the city has to offer. Competition is fierce, but all Essie can concentrate on are Steele’s dirty-talking lessons in sex. But when the student surpasses the master when it comes to love, Steele’s inner demons get the better of him. If he can't face them down, he’ll lose Essie forever.

123,000 words

***This standalone, mildly erotic contemporary romance contains a dirty-talking Alpha with a penchant for having sex in public places. No cheating, no love triangles and no cliffhangers. Fairy tale HEA guaranteed. Due to adult language and sexual content, this book is not intended for people under the age of 18***

 

If you haven’t picked up this series yet I would advise you…  GET MOVING..  BUY BUY BUY!!  Ok now that this little bit of business has been completed let’s look at this story.

This was not an easy story in some respects as Essie has a lot to work thru after her attack when she was just a teenager.  She’s so strong though and seeing her let down the walls with a man who is anything but easy to handle was wonderful to watch.  She’s thinking she’s made a mistake coming back to her hometown but what she finds as she struggles thru a competition that could make her fashion career is the life she never thought she’d have.  I loved her strength, her weakness and the fact that even as broken as she believes she is she’s not willing to accept anything but what she deserves.  She’s not a person who will accept less than everything and this causes some moments where, once again, I wanted to hurt a Stacy Gail hero *she does this on purpose I just know it* .  Essie will have you laughing with her, cheering for her and crying at times as you see her finally emerge from the shadows to become exactly who she should be.  I loved seeing her transformation in this book.

Steele was something else.  He’s got demons of his own to exorcise and dammit if I didn’t want to strangle him as much as I wanted to cuddle him.  He’s drawn to Essie in a way I won’t spoil but they are perfect for one another.  There is something gentle about the man even as he is not someone to be trifled with.  You’ll melt as he works his magic on Essie and really wish you were in her shoes.  I have to admit there are some things he does that makes me think about a man currently in my life who has helped me open up more than I ever have been able to before.  There is something freeing about having someone that really does seem to see you… not the persona… but the real you and pushes you to let that side free.  Steele is this person for Essie and it turns out Essie is this person for Steele.

This was not an easy read but it is worth getting to see two damaged people finally find what they need to truly live life again.  You’ll definitely be cheering for them to figure things out so run away and pick this up.

Thanks again to Stacy for sending this my way…  I’m sorry I ran so late on getting this up but you know I love ya!

four-half-stars

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Have You Missed Me? Big (to me) News….

May 20, 2016 Misc Info 6

I’ve missed you guys a lot over the last few months but between work, RT, BEA, school and getting sick (see RT & BEA) my body just couldn’t keep up.  I know, I know…  but WHY…..  LOL

So let’s look at the insane things I have been up to:

RT Booklover’s Convention in Las Vegas:

  • I splurged on two bracelets from Tiffany’s while there
  • Got a smack on the ass from a passing Chippendale’s dancer
  • Walked way too many steps every day from the tower that was the farthest away from the con
  • Ate way too much great food
  • Actually voluntarily, while sober, rode the VooDoo Zipline….  I cannot emphasize enough HOW MUCH I HATE HEIGHTS

BEA in Chicago:

  • Took Amtrak for my first time and actually liked sitting back, relaxing and snoozing my time away
  • Had a great temporary roommate- Lori M Lee
  • Met Nicholas Sparks (got a book signed for mom)
  • Met Kareem Abdul Jabbar
  • Met Jaz Jennings and her mom (I just wanted to tell them both I was so proud of them)
  • Met Berkeley Breathed….
  • Did I say met Berkeley Breathed?????  Cause YA THAT HAPPENED
  • Met Jamie Lee Curtis
  • Met Wesley Chu…
  • And hauled so many books back with a nice side of pnuemonia…. *sigh*

3 classes this quarter including:

  • Public Speaking – For an introvert this class is torture defined.
  • Introduction to Sociology – Taken online with an instructor that only posted the next week as open for work on Monday morning with work due on Sunday… *head desk* this BTW cost me 1/3 of my points on an assignment because while I was traveling back from BEA I wasn’t able to respond to 1 more person …  ya know SINCE ONLY MYSELF & 1 OTHER STUDENT HAD POSTED DISCUSSION STUFF BY NOON ON THE DAY IT WAS DUE!!!  I wrote him about it before I got on the train and explained I would not have WiFi again until midnight (aka 1 min after due) and he could clearly tell that there was NOONE else I could’ve responded to …. anyway…  moving on…  grrrrrrr
  • Microeconomics – *waits for the groan from everyone* Yeah I know but it was required…

Now I just have to wait patiently for the final items to be graded and then….

BIG NEWS….  At 45 I have FINALLY completed an Associate’s Degree….

Yes I know…  But to me it is a HUGE deal that I put off for way too long.  This means that since my Bachelor’s program won’t start until September 12th (aka my 46th birthday)…

I can start reading for fun again…  blog about all the things I am reading…  and shake up what I do online.

While at BEA I wandered in to the booth where they were showcasing Taste of Home books and information.  This leads me to the idea that since I love to cook that I should also start sharing more of that with you as I know many of you also love cooking.

So with this being said…  I will be working to streamline how I do things on here so I can maintain this while I work on my Bachelor’s in the fall.  I love sharing my finds with people and really want to have more posts, information and giveaways out here.  I am also thinking about doing a book club with local and virtual people because one of the things I did at BEA was a speed-dating event where I got a preview of so many interesting titles that I’d love to share with everyone..

So please keep an eye on this space over the next few months as I have a lot of stuff to give away… talk about … and enjoy…

 

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For Crown and Kingdom – Jeffe Kennedy Guest Post

April 28, 2016 Guest Post 2

Most of you who follow this blog know that I have enjoyed a lot of stories from Jeffe Kennedy over the years.  This story is something I am looking forward to but I also love seeing what has inspired her stories of The Twelve Kingdoms and here we get a glimpse of what makes her tick.

Thoughts….

It should be no secret by now that I love mythology of all kinds. It started with attending Catholic rituals in my tender youth, combined with an early acquisition of a tattered copy of Bullfinch’s Greek Mythology. The two are more closely related than you’d think! I also read all kinds of fantasy with consuming passion, including every fairy tale I could lay my hands on.

Later in life, as I headed to college, my very Catholic grandmother told me that I didn’t believe in the Holy Church because I didn’t know enough about it – so I majored in Religious Studies along with Biology. Being who I am, however (remember that copy of Bullfinch’s?), I took courses in every religious practice the university offered, including one in Greek Mythology! Along with Islam, Judaism, Jewish and Catholic mysticism, oriental philosophies of all stripes and a smattering of others.

In short, my head is stuffed with religious mythologies of all kinds.

So, when I wrote The Twelve Kingdoms books, though I didn’t plan to have a religious mythology as a foundation for the world, I wasn’t too surprised when one developed. I didn’t really draw on any particular legend, religion or mythology, however. One of the beautiful – and liberating – aspects of creating a religious mythology is that it allows an author to comment on the role of belief in our lives without criticizing any particular philosophy.

Because I truly believe there’s no line of belief that’s wrong or another that’s right – the problems come in when people take their beliefs to extremes or try to force them on others.

All that said, I wanted the mythology of The Twelve Kingdoms and Uncharted Realms to be based on goddesses to contrast with the primarily patriarchal religions that dominate our world today. The stories are heroine-centric, so the mythology is infused with the divine feminine also. Sharp readers might recognize aspects of Aprodite, Athena and Artemis in Glorianna, Danu and Moranu.

Though I did a bit of mixing and matching too!

More about Jeffe:

jeffe

Jeffe Kennedy is an award-winning author whose works include non-fiction, poetry, short fiction, and novels. She has been a Ucross Foundation Fellow, received the Wyoming Arts Council Fellowship for Poetry, and was awarded a Frank Nelson Doubleday Memorial Award. Her essays have appeared in many publications, including Redbook.

Her most recent works include a number of fiction series: the fantasy romance novels of A Covenant of Thorns; the contemporary BDSM novellas of the Facets of Passion, and an erotic contemporary serial novel, Master of the Opera. A fourth series, the fantasy trilogy The Twelve Kingdoms, hit the shelves starting in May 2014 and book 1, The Mark of the Tala, received a starred Library Journal review was nominated for the RT Book of the Year while the sequel, The Tears of the Rose was nominated for the RT Reviewers’ Choice Best Fantasy Romance of 2014 and the third book, The Talon of the Hawk, won the RT Reviewers’ Choice Best Fantasy Romance of 2015. Two more books will follow in this world, beginning with The Pages of the Mind May 2016. A fifth series, the erotic romance trilogy, Falling Under, started with Going Under, and was followed by Under His Touch and Under Contract.

She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, with two Maine coon cats, plentiful free-range lizards and a very handsome Doctor of Oriental Medicine.

Jeffe can be found online at her website: JeffeKennedy.com, every Sunday at the popular Word Whores blog, on Facebook, on Goodreads and pretty much constantly on Twitter @jeffekennedy. She is represented by Connor Goldsmith of Fuse Literary.

 

And a bit about For Crown and Kingdom:

C and Q

 

The Crown of the Queen

A Twelve Kingdoms Novella

Dafne Mailloux, librarian and temporary babysitter to the heirs to the High Throne of the Twelve – now Thirteen – Kingdoms, finds it difficult to leave the paradise of Annfwn behind. Particularly that trove of rare books in temptingly unfamiliar languages. But duty calls, and hers is to the crown. It’s not like her heart belongs elsewhere. But how can she crown a queen who hesitates to take the throne?

This novella will be part of a duology called For Crown and Kingdom, which will also contain a novella by Grace Draven.

For Crown and Kingdom (The Crown of the Queen) will release on May 24, 2016 and will be available in digital format and print.

Buy links will be added to the bookpage once available:

http://www.jeffekennedy.com/for-crown-and-kingdom/

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Spotlight on – The Devil’s Doorbell – An Erotic Anthology with an Excerpt from Jeffe Kennedy’s Exact Warm Unholy

April 21, 2016 Tours 1

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A woman’s pleasure is a dangerous thing. A primal appetite that, once awakened, can never be sated. A secret that gives power to those who know it. A magic that, once unleashed, can never be contained.

Some say the clitoris is the devil’s doorbell, set to summon him forth at the merest touch…

It’s time to ring the bell.

Here are seven tales of sexual empowerment and erotic defiance, featuring the hottest storytellers of erotic fiction.

Anne Calhoun
Christine d’Abo
Delphine Dryden
Megan Hart
Jeffe Kennedy
Megan Mulry
M. O’Keefe

Coming April 26, 2016!

Stories included are:

In the Garden, by Anne Calhoun

Forbidden fruit is the most delicious…

A wedding in the bucolic English countryside offers Kelsey ripe temptation in the form of a hot groomsman, Julian. Will the illicit attraction satisfy an old craving or stoke a new desire?

 

Exact Warm Unholy, by Jeffe Kennedy

Tonight my name is Mary…

 Or is it? Sometimes she’s Tiffany or Syd or Bobbi. But whatever face she wears, she returns to the same bar, to find a new man and seduce him, safe in the knowledge that no one will recognize her. Until one man does.

 

Red Leather, by Delphine Dryden

Some activities are definitely not safe for work.

Maggie’s sadness over being dumped quickly turns to relief and excitement when she discovers a new freedom…a new Maggie she could have never been with her ex. Combine New Maggie with Tim the Hot Mailroom Guy and an unexpected vibrator…and the office supply room door becomes the portal to a world of devilish fun.

 

Drowning on Dry Land, by Megan Hart

Some doors stay open until you close them.

Moving on from a past love, Bette Douglas has discovered a whole new world of satisfaction and contentment with her boy Damian…but when the past comes knocking, Bette’s decision to answer it could change everything.

 

Devil in the Dark, by Christine d’Abo

When developer Shona needs to beta test her new app – The Devil’s Doorbell – she goes out on the prowl for a man who will fulfil her wildest fantasies – oral sex in public. What could possibly go wrong when she finds her devil in the dark?

 

London Calling, by Megan Mulry

“Face-sitter wanted, in exchange for free accommodation in Mayfair.” -Craigslist

She hadn’t planned on being quite so adventurous when she decided to spend the year in London, but when she read the ad, she couldn’t resist.

 

We Are All Found Things, by M. O’Keefe

Rennie’s trying to forget her past; her mysterious new tenant is trying to keep his past a secret. But when Rennie finds out the truth about Luka she discovers as much about herself as she does her innocent lover.

 

Excerpt:

Exact Warm Unholy

by Jeffe Kennedy

 

Tonight, my name is Mary.

Mary, Mary, quite contrary. That calls for fiery red, steampunk crimson carved into long, perfect ringlets. Not a corset, though. Not for Circle2, a bar that tends toward the conservative, at least so far as cosplay is concerned, unless it’s Halloween or something. Instead I choose the black sheath dress with the deep vee neckline to show off the inner curves of my breasts, and advertise that I’m not wearing a bra. Or anything else beneath.

Have to set the bait properly, after all. And Mary can do what I never could.

For makeup, I go with a retro vibe. I have to layer it on thick anyway, to make myself into Mary, so the heavy stuff works best. Theater pancake in the fairest tone to complement the hair. False lashes and black eyeliner, with a cat’s eye flair. Bright green contact lenses. Lipstick in screaming scarlet, just shades darker than the wig. Amazing, really, how redrawing the lines of lips and eyes change a face entirely.

No one ever recognizes me, not even me. Maybe G_d does, but we’ve had a falling out and I don’t care.

At the last moment I go for boots instead of stilettos. High heels, black leather, over-the-knee. Maybe I’ll let him fuck me in just the boots. Whoever he’ll be tonight.

The night air slaps chill on my bare arms, so I hurry the few blocks to Circle2. I don’t like to wear a coat. They’re too expensive to wear a different one every time and I’d rather spend the money on wigs. Too bad there’s not a wig wear-and-return system, as I never wear the same one twice.

I don’t mind the coolness either. It helps combat the heat. I’m alive with the anticipation, already wet, primed for the release to come.

Tonight I pick out a stool at the bar. Mary is the sort who’d do that. I cross my legs so my hem rides up to show a strip of skin above my boot, turning sideways to display my cleavage.

Come and get it, gentlemen.

“What’ll you have?” the bartender asks. He’s a genial sort, always ready with a friendly smile. Never hits on me, no matter who I am that night, which makes me think he doesn’t take advantage of the women who come to the bar. That’s part of the reason I go to Circle2. It sets a tone to the hookups, I think, as the men who frequent the place are generally clean and polite.

He’s always working, six nights a week. The bar is closed on Mondays. I suspect he owns it, but we don’t have conversations. At least, not connected ones. I’m always a stranger to him. He smiles, asks what I’ll have, then leaves me alone.

Tonight it’s Prosecco and he gives it to me in a tall flute. He’s wearing a shirt that says “The book was better.”

“I’ll get that for the lady.” A tall man, dark skin, pretty brown eyes, makes the offer hopefully. He’s wearing a good suit, has nice hands, long fingers. I’ve never seen him in here before. Yes. Yes, he’ll do nicely.

Author Websites:

Anne Calhoun – http://www.annecalhoun.com/

Christine d’Abo – http://christinedabo.com/

Delphine Dryden – http://www.delphinedryden.com/

Megan Hart – http://meganhart.com/

Jeffe Kennedy – http://www.jeffekennedy.com/

Megan Mulry – http://meganmulry.com/

M. O’Keefe – http://www.molly-okeefe.com/

Cover Art:

Cover by Book Beautiful – http://www.bookbeautiful.com/

 

Buy links:

Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01CN5KBYY/

iTunes – https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-devils-doorbell/id1090773200

Kobo – https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/the-devil-s-doorbell

 

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