New Release Review and Giveaway! CONFESSIONS OF A FORMER PUCK BUNNY by Cindi Madsen (Taking Shots #4)

Today we have the stop for Cindi Madsen’s Confessions of a Former Puck Bunny. Check out this fantastic new romance and grab your copy today!

About Confessions of a Former Puck Bunny:

Confession #1: I used to be a puck bunny, but after a hockey player broke my heart, I gave up all things hockey. Now I’m just focused on finding a way to pass my math class so I can graduate college.

Confession #2: Ryder “Ox” Maddox’s deep, sexy voice sends fuzzy tingles through my entire body, and I’m powerless to stop it. Which is a big problem since the hot, surprisingly funny hockey player is my new math tutor.

Confession #3: I can’t stop thinking about how ripped Ryder is from all his hockey training, and how fun it’d be to cross lines with him.

Confession #4: I kissed a hockey player and I liked it.

Confession #5: If I’m not careful, I might relapse and fall for Ryder, and then I’ll be totally pucked.

Get Your Copy Today!

Amazon | Amazon Australia | Amazon UK | Amazon Canada | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

Review:

OMG, I loved, loved, loved this book! Lindsay is totally my fictional sister-from-another-mister. We’re like twins with the editing, you can’t turn that stuff off and give us HEAs forever and math? Ugh! And Ryder? Don’t even get me started on that guy 🙂 Between his refusal to give up on Lindsay no matter how prickly she was or how many walls she threw up to his math whispering abilities to his excellent making-up-for-being-an-a-hole grand gesture (the placement of that paintball gun had me flinching in sympathy), the fact that he is a hockey player too is like mile-high icing piled on the best cake ever.

Because, hockey.

Although I’m sad that this is apparently the last book in the series (but why? There are other players on the team….Daniel could use an HEA, for example, subtle hint… ;)) I have to admit that Lindsay and Ryder struck exactly the right final note. Though you could absolutely read Confessions of a Former Puck Bunny as a standalone, do yourself a real favor and read the other three books too because these four couples are amazing. They’re great when they’re secondary characters meddling into their friends’ relationships, but they’re even better when they’re center stage in their own stories.

Plus…did I mention hockey?

Need I say more?

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

Catch Up On the Series!
Getting Lucky Number Seven
Anatomy of a Player
Crazy Pucking Love

About Cindi Madsen:

Cindi Madsen is a USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance and young adult novels. She sits at her computer every chance she gets, plotting, revising, and falling in love with her characters. Sometimes it makes her a crazy person. Without it, she’d be even crazier. She has way too many shoes, but can always find a reason to buy a pretty new pair, especially if they’re sparkly, colorful, or super tall. She loves music and dancing and wishes summer lasted all year long. She lives in Colorado (where summer is most definitely NOT all year long) with her husband and three children.

You can visit Cindi at: www.cindimadsen.com, where you can sign up for her newsletter to get all the up-to-date information on her books.

Follow her on Twitter @cindimadsen.

Connect with Cindi:
Website | Newsletter | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Enter Cindi’s Giveaway:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

 

New Release Review! BREAKING FREE by Adirenne Giordano (Steele Ridge #5)

Breaking Free
by Adrienne Giordano

Synopsis:

As the black sheep of the Steele brood, Micki Steele craves one thing: the love of her family. Working as a hacker for a ruthless fixer, Micki has done things she’ll never be proud of. When she flees Vegas and returns to her hometown, she brings along her boss’s secrets and plenty of danger. At least until he arrives in Steele Ridge, intent on hauling her back to Vegas—or burying her in North Carolina.

Former Green Beret and family friend Gage Barber has been Mr. Fix-It his entire life, but now a war wound leaves him struggling with simple tasks. And when the mysterious and sexy Micki shows up and pulls him into the middle of her family drama, his loyalty to the Steele family is tested. Although he’s sworn off his need to play hero, his undeniable attraction to Micki leaves him with only one option—convincing her to break free of her ruthless boss.

Torn over protecting the man she’s falling in love with and her yearning for a normal life, Micki must choose between staying trapped in Vegas or a life of freedom in Steele Ridge. Even if breaking free leads straight to heartbreak…and prison.

Review:

I am loving this series!

Ms. Giordano had me at “Captain America”–I did have to keep pausing to picture Chris Evans while I read about Gabe, but it was totally worth it. 😉

Micki’s (the first Steele sister to get her own HEA–but not the last, surely? *cough* Evie *cough* Subtle. Hint) story was a real page turner. Needing to know how in the world Micki managed to get involved in the job she did and how she’d get herself extricated from that nightmare without her or anyone she loved getting hurt had me on the edge of my seat. (Schoolwork? What schoolwork? ;))

Gabe (did I mention Captain America? Yes? ;)) is a fantastic hero–he sees Micki in a way her brothers don’t–can’t, really–and OMG are these two ever amazing together. I loved his voice here just as much as I did Micki’s, and really look forward to seeing more of him in the other series books.

Though this is the fifth book in the series, Micki’s been gone for the others, and so this one would work fine as a standalone. Fair warning, though–you see exactly enough of all four of her brothers here to ensure that you absolutely need to read their stories too!

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.


View all my reviews

 

Review:

 

 

New Release Review and Giveaway! FRAUD by J.L. Berg


About FRAUD:

From USA Today Bestselling author J.L. Berg comes a sexy standalone about love, lies and every dirty little thing in between.

It wasn’t just a job.

It was my way back to the top.

After losing my position as a journalist for one of the biggest news publications in the world,
I knew I’d do anything to get it back.

Even if it meant breaking a few hearts to get there.

She was the hottest author in the country. Known only by a pen name, there wasn’t a person alive who wasn’t dying to discover her true identity.

And I’d figured it out.

Her real name was Kate O’Malley and not only did I plan on finding her, but I fully intended on learning every dirty secret she had and exploiting it for my own gain.

But I underestimated my prey.

I didn’t anticipate how her words would intoxicate me, or how the curves of her body would consume me.

I never meant to fall in love.

And now I had a choice to make.

Do I give up everything for the woman I set out to destroy, or walk away, making me the biggest fraud of all?

Add FRAUD to your to be read shelf on Goodreads!

JLBFraudBookCover6x9_BW_HIGH

Read FRAUD for free with Kindle Unlimited!

Review:

Loved!

I immediately felt a connection with Kate–I loved her inner voice especially, and wanted to be her new BFF and head Kate/Laura cheerleader–but Killian took a little more work. The first few chapters he narrated? I was not a fan. At all. But he slowly grew on me, and I have to admit the first-person POV probably helped out her a whole lot, and by the end even though I knew he’d made some huge, huge mistakes I really, really wanted him to be forgiven for them.

Ms. Berg has her work cut out wit Killian’s brother Liam, though, the upcoming hero of the next book–he’s a great guy personally–I loved him and Killian together, and he provides a much-needed butt kicking when necessary–but he’s got seriously loose morals and needs find something more–what’s the word I’m looking for here? Oh, yes, legal to do with his impressive skill set. She does an excellent job here, because yeah, I need to know what he’s been up to, but jeez, he’s gonna take some work.

He’s definitely no Killian. Or Kate, for that matter.

Of course, I may never look at cannoli the same again. Or chocolate chip ice cream. Or chocolate sauce…

Yikes. Must distract self by thinking about Liam’s book a bit more… 😉

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

 

About J.L. Berg

J.L. Berg is the USA Today bestselling author of the Ready Series, The Walls Duet, and the Lost & Found Duet. She is a California native living in the beautiful state of historic Virginia. Married to her high school sweetheart, they have two beautiful girls that drive them batty on a daily basis. When she’s not writing, you will find her with her nose stuck in a romance novel, in a yoga studio or devouring anything chocolate. J.L. Berg is represented by Jill Marsal of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency, LLC.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Newsletter

Enter to win!

Want to win a $25 Amazon gift card? Enter via the rafflecopter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

New Release Review! SEX IN THE STICKS by Sawyer Bennett (Love Hurts #1)

Wake up and feel the wood! In the first of a series of irresistible standalone romances from New York Times bestselling author Sawyer Bennett, a city girl rediscovers love and lust in the Alaskan wilderness.

Valentine French may be the sassiest dating columnist in New York City, but the abundance of metrosexuals in her adopted metropolis is seriously cramping her style. Where are the beefy all-American boys? Hoping to find some inspiration, Val heads to Alaska, where the men outnumber the women fifteen to one and wrestle grizzly bears for sport. Or so she can only imagine. Suddenly the most eligible bachelorette in a town full of horny lumberjacks, Val is writing her best columns ever. But if she doesn’t get her nose out of her laptop, she just might miss out on Mr. Right.

Logan Burke is the sheriff of the little podunk town that Val finds so charmingly backward. He’s not that different from the guys she’s using for her little experiment; it’s just that one date would never be enough for Logan. As he listens to Val complain about love over beers in the local tavern, he realizes that she can’t see the forest for the trees. Because if she would ever give up her Prada bags and fourteen-dollar martinis, Logan would give her the only luxury that matters: his heart.

Amazon   B&N   iBooks   Google Play   Kobo

Review:

Oh my goodness–LOVED!

Valentine French is about as fish-out-of-water as a heroine can get–and yes, we’ve seen the whole socialite stuck in the wilds bit before, but somehow here Ms. Bennett made it feel new and fresh again. There were so many LOL moments, so many awwwwwwww moments (seriously, how many warm coats does Logan own? Totally not complaining, though, because…So. Sweet.), and so many [fans self] moments…I need more from this series. Like, yesterday!

I’ll admit Val was a bit much while in NYC, but fortunately she didn’t stay there long enough for me to give up on her, and then Alaska managed to work its magic on her. Well, Alaska and Logan. 😉

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

 

About the author:

AuthorPhotoSince the release of her debut contemporary romance novel, Off Sides, in January 2013, Sawyer Bennett has released more than 30 books and has been featured on both the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists on multiple occasions.

A reformed trial lawyer from North Carolina, Sawyer uses real life experience to create relatable, sexy stories that appeal to a wide array of readers. From new adult to erotic contemporary romance, Sawyer writes something for just about everyone.

Sawyer likes her Bloody Marys strong, her martinis dirty, and her heroes a combination of the two. When not bringing fictional romance to life, Sawyer is a chauffeur, stylist, chef, maid, and personal assistant to a very active toddler, as well as full-time servant to two adorably naughty dogs. She believes in the good of others, and that a bad day can be cured with a great work-out, cake, or a combination of the two.

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | BOOKBUB | AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE | INSTAGRAM

Release Day Review and Giveaway! IN SKATES TROUBLE by Kate Meader (Chicago Rebels novella)

USA Today bestselling author Kate Meader, author of the Hot in Chicago firefighter novels is moving from fire to ice with the Chicago Rebels hockey series, and you can get a taste of that action for 99¢. Originally published in Hot on Ice: A Hockey Romance Anthology, IN SKATES TROUBLE is a Chicago Rebels prequel novella with an older, full-figured woman, a younger, driven hero, and a happily-ever-after you’ll swoon over. If you missed it the first time around, here’s your chance to grab it for less than a buck!

What’s it all about?

He’ll give her what she needs . . .

Addison Williams isn’t looking for romance, but when she encounters an eavesdropping stranger on an adjoining hotel balcony, she figures she’s due a little fun. She just hadn’t reckoned on the “fun” escalating so quickly to “out of control.” One minute she’s flirting with a whiskey-graveled voice in the dark, the next that same voice is telling her to do things. Hot, wicked things.

Cup-winning hockey player Ford “Killer” Callaghan can’t believe he let the anonymous woman who blew his mind slip away into the night. He’ll track her down because once could never be enough—even if discovering her identity places her strictly out of bounds.

Stolen kisses. Secret hook-ups. Deliciously forbidden in every way. Can a passion that started in the dark find a lifetime of love in the light?

 

Read an excerpt here.

Where can I buy it?

Kindle: http://amzn.to/2pQqoBf
Nook: http://bit.ly/2poqT60
iBooks: http://apple.co/2ozPaRr
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2pQx5Dx
Google Play: http://bit.ly/2po1PvQ

Review:

A NEW KATE MEADER SERIES. Like I’m not going to get right on that? Riiiight.

In Skates Trouble definitely did not disappoint. A full-figured model (squee!) and a younger-than-her, hockey-playing hero who’s willing to put everything on the line to be with her? What’s not to love? Plus, we get just enough of a glimpse of the h/H of the series’ first full-length book to make sure our one-click finger’s going to get a workout…

Can’t wait!

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

About the author:

Kate writes sexy contemporary romance with alpha heroes and strong heroines who can match their men quip for quip.

Where can I find Kate?

Website: http://katemeader.com
Twitter: @kittymeader
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorkatemeader
Kate’s Kittens, exclusive readers’ group on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/578930782228475/
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6551743.Kate_Meader
Newsletter: http://katemeader.com/newsletter/

Giveaway!

Enter Kate’s giveaway here!

New Release Review and Giveaway! A CHARMED LITTLE LIE by Sharla Lovelace (Charmed in Texas #1)

Spinning a story of a joyous marriage to make a dying woman happy is forgivable, isn’t it?

 

A CHARMED LITTLE LIE
Charmed in Texas #1
Sharla Lovelace
Releasing April 18th, 2017
Lyrical Shine

Lanie Barrett didn’t mean to lie. Spinning a story of a joyous marriage to make a dying woman happy is forgivable, isn’t it? Lanie thinks so, especially since her beloved Aunt Ruby would have been heartbroken to know the truth of her niece’s sadly loveless, short-of-sparkling existence. Trouble is, according to the will, Ruby didn’t quite buy Lanie’s tale. And to inherit the only house Lanie ever really considered a home, she’ll have to bring her “husband” back to Charmed, Texas for three whole months—or watch Aunt Ruby’s cozy nest go to her weasel cousin, who will sell it to a condo developer.
Nick McKane is out of work, out of luck, and the spitting image of the man Lanie described. He needs money for his daughter’s art school tuition, and Lanie needs a convenient spouse. It’s a match made . . . well, not quite in heaven, but for a temporary arrangement, it couldn’t be better. Except the longer Lanie and Nick spend as husband and wife, the more the connection between them begins to seem real. Maybe this modern fairy tale really could come true . . .
 


I didn’t look back, and I didn’t care. Nick’s hand was warm in mine, and when we reached the dance floor they’d cleared a space for, he tugged back gently to make me turn around. The look in those dark eyes nearly took out my knees. He pulled me into his arms, leaving no room for imagination, and I let my hands slide up his chest to his neck, and around back as his eyelids grew heavy.

Roberta Flack crooned softly, the first time…ever I saw your face… And something in me went warm from head to toe. Something besides whatever was in that punch. Something more real than that.

“Nice save.”

“I tried.”

“How was the punch?” he asked.

I wound my fingers into his hair and pulled his head down.

“See for yourself,” I said, the last word finished against his lips.

Sparks ignited throughout my body as our lips met. Soft. Slow. Wet. Needing. Our bodies moved as one with the music, so close, so tightly pressed together I could feel his heart beating. My hands traveled slowly back down his chest and around his middle as his came up into my hair. When his tongue ran over my top lip, I knew he could feel my gasp. And when I pulled him in deeper to taste him, I felt the low growl in his chest rumbling against mine.

His fingers twisted in my hair as he dove deep and then pulled back, deep again and back, teasing me, pulling back to kiss my lips one at a time, as I kept clinging tighter. I was drunk on it. Breathing shallow. My fingers curling into his shirt with the need for more.

The first time…ever I kissed…your lips…

It was erotic, the way he kissed me. The way I kissed him. Slow, matching our movements. Intimate. Electric and emotional at the same time. And so full of desire and barely restrained need, that my body was trembling with it when he held my face and leaned his forehead against mine.

I wanted to keep my eyes closed. Absorb the feel of him, the song, the words, the taste. Just hold on to it a little longer. But I felt the heat of his gaze and my eyes fluttered open. And everything inside me turned to liquid fire. No one—ever—had looked at me like that. Had wanted me like that. The mirror image of what was churning inside me was all over him. In the desire mixed with the trouble haunting his eyes. This wasn’t the game. That thought hit me like a sucker punch to the gut. This was—

His mouth covered mine again, hungrier, hotter, and I melted into it. The burn in my chest at the realization of just how fucking real this was, stole at my breath, and I didn’t care. It was more than we were supposed to be doing but—God, it was so good. It was so good my heart felt like it was swelling to the size of the room. Wrapping around us as his hands cradled my face and he broke from the kiss, moving his lips along my face, my cheeks, back to my lips, both of us breathing fast. It was more. Nick was giving me the more. It wasn’t just physical; it was bursting inside me.

When he pulled me to him, I buried my face in his neck and held him as tightly as I could as the words slowed to an end. I didn’t want it to be over. I didn’t want to let go.

I could hear my heart in my ears, pounding with every breath. He smelled like soap and something woodsy and Nick, and I always knew that but being up close enough to lick him made the smell intoxicating.

The music stopped.

The lighting was changing. I had to let go of him, and the second I moved he backed up too. Just a little. Just enough for me to see the mouth I’d just gotten to know intimately. His gaze fell to my lips as well, before dragging up to my eyes. Things had changed. In the course of time it took for that song to make its evolution, our reality had shifted. And the real kicker was that I think we both knew it already had.

 

Loved!

Why on earth haven’t I read anything from this author before? I added her entire backlist to my TBR almost as soon as I read the last word of this book–not to mention Charmed in Texas, book 2 ( Lucky Charmed ), because OMG, I need to read Carmen’s story, like now. Seriously.

A Charmed Little Lie had me giggling like a loon in the waiting room of the dentist’s office yesterday–fortunately, there weren’t too many people in there to witness it. Goodness gracious, Lanie and Nick’s story hit all of my buttons. It’s funny, it’s real–even the more outrageous bits, like Lanie’s imaginary spouse and how well Nick fits the bill (especially considering how she finds him) and Lanie’s aunt’s will end up seeming somehow plausible–and romantic and so, so hot. Lanie and Nick have tons of repressed chemistry, and whoa, it had me squirming almost as much as it did them.

So, yeah. I want to crawl into the world of this book and live there. I want to hang out with Lanie and Carmen, and dodge Ralph’s doggy kisses, and sit enraptured in the Blue Banana while Nick makes me a burger. Or pancakes. Or a salad. Heck, I’d even watch him make liver and onions. I’m not picky.

How soon until Carmen’s story?

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.


Sharla Lovelace is the bestselling, award-winning author of sexy small-town love stories. Being a Texas girl through and through, she’s proud to say she lives in Southeast Texas with her retired husband, a tricked-out golf cart, and two crazy dogs. She is the author of five stand-alone novels including the bestselling Don’t Let Go, the exciting Heart Of The Storm series, and the fun and sexy new Charmed in Texas series.

For more about Sharla’s books, visit www.sharlalovelace.com, and keep up with all her new book releases easily by subscribing to her newsletter. She loves keeping up with her readers, and you can connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

New Release Review! MADLY by Ruthie Knox (New York Trilogy #2)


Madly

by Ruthie Knox

Synopsis:

An impulsive trip to New York City, a heartthrob from London, and a scandalous to-do list turn a small-town girl’s life upside down in this sultry romance from the New York Times bestselling author of Truly and About Last Night.

Allie Fredericks isn’t supposed to be in Manhattan, hiding in the darkest corner of a hip bar, spying on her own mother—who’s flirting with a man who’s definitely not Allie’s father. Allie’s supposed to be in Wisconsin, planning her parents’ milestone anniversary party. Then Winston Chamberlain walks through the door, with his tailored suit, British accent, and gorgeous eyes, and Allie’s strange mission goes truly sideways.

Winston doesn’t do messy. But after a pretty stranger ropes him into her ridiculous family drama with a fake kiss that gets a little too real, he finds out that messy can be fun. Maybe even a little addicting. And as the night grows longer, Allie and Winston make a list of other wild things they could do together—and what seems like a mismatch leads to a genuine connection. But can their relationship survive as their real lives implode just outside the bedroom door?

 

Review:

So, so good 🙂

I loved both Allie and Winston–they shouldn’t have worked together at all, but OMG they so did somehow. I’m going to give the credit to Ruthie Knox’s writing here–she really knows how to write characters who shouldn’t at all be made for each other but totally are. I also really liked that their age difference was practically a non-issue for everyone involved; that was unexpected but also absolutely worked.

Seriously, she’s a romance wizard.

The whole what-is-Allie-and-May’s-mother-doing-in-NYC subplot was a little iffy–it worked to bring Allie and Winston together, but then took up a bit too much page time in parts of the book, finally ending up…just okay in the end. It was ultimately pretty feel-good, though a bit out there on the realism front.

Allie and Winston are both siblings to previous Knox characters–Allie’s May’s sister from Truly and Winston’s Nev’s brother from  About Last Night–and though it could be read on its own, I did find myself wishing I’d had a recent refresher, especially for Truly (mostly because of how much I loved, loved, loved May and Ben’s story, but also because it seems like that book came out ages ago).

Now–how about a book for Winston’s daughter? 🙂

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

View all my reviews

New Release Review: TWIST by Kylie Scott (Dive Bar #2)

Dive-Bar-banner-with-Chaser

From New York Times bestselling author Kylie Scott comes the second sizzling stand-alone novel in the Dive Bar series!

When his younger brother loses interest in online dating, hot bearded bartender Joe Collins only intends to log into his account and shut it down. Until he reads about her.

Alex Parks is funny, fascinating, and pretty much everything he’s been looking for in a woman—except that she lives across the country. Soon they’re emailing up a storm and telling each other their deepest, darkest secrets…except the one that really matters.

When Alex pays Joe a surprise visit, however, they both discover that when it comes to love, it’s always better with a twist.

Twist-promo-10

Review:

Oh my goodness, this book was so much fun to read. I absolutely loved Alex’s voice–her snark, her insecurities, her weird quirky hangups–I think I found my new fictional BFF. (She’s given me my new motto: “When in doubt, don’t answer the phone or the door. It’s always people.” Maybe we were separated at birth?) And since in my head Joe looks an awful lot like Thor, I’m not going to mind hanging out with my new bestie and her beau at all 🙂

Seriously, why have I never read anything by Kylie Scott before? Must remedy ASAP.

Twist worked absolutely fine as a standalone. Other book characters–both from this series and (briefly, oh-so-briefly but they’re there) Scott’s Stage Dive series make appearances, but you don’t have to have read their books to appreciate this one. Chances are you’ll want to read them, though–if you’re like me, this urge will hit around page, oh–five, maybe?–because, holy schmoly, this is some fun reading. Heck, I even want to read Eric’s (upcoming) book, and he wasn’t anywhere close to my favorite secondary character. If anyone can change my mind about him, it’s probably Ms. Scott.

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

twist

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AUS | Amazon CA | iBooks | B&N | Kobo | Google Play

Twist-promo-5

 

About the author:

kyliescottimageKylie is a New York Times and USA Today best-selling author. She was voted Australian Romance Writer of the year, 2013 & 2014, by the Australian Romance Writer’s Association and her books have been translated into eleven different languages. She is a long time fan of romance, rock music, and B-grade horror films. Based in Queensland, Australia with her two children and husband, she reads, writes and never dithers around on the internet. You can learn more about Kylie from http://www.kylie-scott.com/

 

FACEBOOK | TWITTER | FACEBOOK FAN GROUP | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS

 

New Release Review and Giveaway! A STUDY IN SCOUNDRELS by Christy Carlyle (Romancing the Rules #2)

Can this scoundrel convince a proper lady that he’s actually perfect for her or will their adventure leave them both heartbroken? 


 

A STUDY IN SCOUNDRELS
Romancing the Rules #2
Christy Carlyle
Releasing April 11th, 2017
Avon Impulse

 

Sophia Ruthven is the epitome of proper behavior. On paper at least, as long as that paper isn’t from one of the lady detective stories she secretly pens. She certainly isn’t interested in associating with the dashing Jasper Grey, the wayward heir to the Earl of Stanhope, and one of the stage’s leading men. But when she learns Grey’s younger sister Liddy has gone missing, she can’t deny her desire to solve the mystery…or her attraction to the incorrigible scoundrel.

Responsibility isn’t something Grey is very familiar with. On the boards and in the bedroom, he lives exactly how he wants to, shunning all the trappings of respectability and society. Grey knows he should avoid the bewitching Sophia, but he’s never been able to say no to what he wants. And having Sophia in his arms and his bed is quickly becoming the thing he wants the most.

As Sophia and Grey’s search for Liddy continues across the English countryside, can this scoundrel convince a proper lady that he’s actually perfect for her or will their adventure leave them both heartbroken? 

Laughter tickled his ears. Weight bore down on his chest, draped over his hips. A soft weight, pliant under his hands. Heated too. Pleasure in his groin twined with pain in his head as the soft, warm weight moved against him.

He blinked, then again. Colors shimmered and blurred. The light was too dim. The room too smoky. Perfume burned his nose, too spicy and pungent.

What was that sound? A moan. A cry.

A rumbling groan reverberated in his own chest.

“Don’t leave me now,” a woman whispered near his ear. “I need release.”

He flexed his fingers, digging into the warm flesh of smooth feminine legs. Slid his hand up, finding the thicket of curls between the woman’s spread thighs.

“Yes, Grey.”

She moved against him, her breath quickening as little moans emerged. She clutched at his shoulder, her other hand on his, showing him how to touch her.

He didn’t require much direction. The role of lover was one he knew by heart. Some said he was skilled on stage, but he never doubted his expertise in the bedroom.

His own body had numbed. Whether from drink or the drugging effect of the smoke rising in whorls above his head, he wasn’t certain. But this, how to touch a woman, how to give pleasure. This he knew intuitively. This was where he excelled.

Heaven knew he’d failed at everything else.

Except acting.

But performing on stage was all a matter of illusion, of lying artfully. Sex and falsehood were his twin aptitudes.

If only he could see the woman clearly and scatter the fog in his mind. He twisted his head on the pillow and noticed a half-empty glass of blue-green liquid glowing in the low gaslight.

“What did I drink?”

A trill of laughter. Red lips. The curve of a grin in a pale face. A waterfall of red hair.

He swirled his fingers in the woman’s curls. She stilled and held her breath. He knew he’d found the key. Gently, masterfully, he touched her with all the art he’d learned from countless lovers.

“Oh, Grey.” She twitched against his fingers, dug her nails into his shoulder. “Don’t stop.”

He didn’t. Not until she gusted out a long moan, dipped her head, and sank against him as if her bones had melted.

“Absinthe,” she murmured against his chest. “A bit of laudanum.”

Grey pressed a fist to the throbbing crown of his head and tried to sit up. The lady on his chest stretched like a cat woken from a nap before rising off him and stepping away from the bed.

No, he realized when his vision cleared and he took in the books lining the walls, not a bed. Not his bedroom. He was on a settee in his London townhouse’s library, and he and his lady companion were not alone. Half-clothed bodies reclined around the musky, haze-clouded room. Some sleeping. Others smoking from an enormous bubbling hookah. At least one couple was busy, writhing and moaning in the far corner.

A man stumbled past the open library door, nude from the waist up, his shirt and coat rolled in a crumpled ball in his arms. Returning to the threshold, he let out a burp before offering, “Many happy returns, Grey. Smashing birthday party.”

Even better than book one–and that’s saying something 🙂

I just loved Sophia and Grey…and Cate (Sophia’s new BFF/Kit and Phee’s housekeeper) and Clary (the youngest Ruthven and heroine of book 3, How to Woo a Wallflower –yay! Though she doesn’t seem particularly wallflowerish here, I’m willing to go with it.) It was so much fun watching Grey completely rethink everything about his life (all while denying that anything was changing, of course) and Sophia come into her own after living under her publisher father’s “rules” for so long. Even though Grey’s little sister Liddy was a bit on the annoying side, at least her taking off the way she did was an excellent way to get her brother out of his self-destructive rut and into Sophia’s path.

This quote particularly sums up both of their characters nicely:

He’d always bucked at being managed by anyone, but Sophia had the voice of a siren. A very practical, sensible siren.

See what I mean? 😉

Plus, the epilogue was especially squee-worthy, and a great way to start my Monday morning.

A Study in Scoundrels worked just fine as a standalone, especially since Kit and Phee ( Rules for a Rogue ) are off on their wedding trip for most of the book. If you have read the first one, however, you’ll be more than glad to see just how Kit’s reprobate best friend and his “do the right thing” sister manage to find their own HEA together.

Bring on Clary’s story–I’m more than ready!

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.


Fueled by Pacific Northwest coffee and inspired by multiple viewings of every British costume drama she can get her hands on, USA Today bestselling author Christy Carlyle writes sensual historical romance set in the Victorian era. She loves heroes who struggle against all odds and heroines who are ahead of their time. A former teacher with a degree in history, she finds there’s nothing better than being able to combine her love of the past with a die-hard belief in happy endings.

 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

New Release Review and Giveaway! DUKE OF DESIRE by Darcy Burke (The Untouchables #4)

About the Book:

Ten years ago Ivy Breckenridge’s life was ruined. She had to reinvent herself, and now, after painstakingly making her own way in the world, she’s nearly forgotten the dreams of home and family she’d once nurtured. Until one man peers into her soul and awakens every one of her hidden desires. But no matter how good he makes her feel, she can’t trust him—alone by choice is better than alone by necessity.

With a notorious reputation for training married women in the art of passion, Sebastian Westgate, Duke of Clare, is reviled by some and celebrated by others. He doesn’t allow anyone close enough to see past his charming exterior. When Ivy uncovers the man beneath, the seducer is suddenly the seduced. Enraptured by her mind and spirit, he wants more but revealing his darkest secrets is a price he won’t pay.

Excerpt:

Ivy hurried downstairs and made her way across the hall to the drawing room, which was the center room at the back of the house. The group had started to thin—either to take part in some activity or rest before dinner.

But because Ivy had the luck of the devil, she found Lady Dunn’s cane in a most inopportune place: the clutches of the Duke of Clare.

He stood near the chair Lady Dunn had vacated, her cane in his hand. His dark gaze swept toward Ivy. “It’s you.”

She resisted the urge to snatch the cane from his grasp and flee. “Yes.” She flicked a glance at his fingers. They were long and rather slender. Almost elegant. “I came for Lady Dunn’s cane.”

“You are her companion, then.” It wasn’t a question. He’d deduced the answer, and they both knew it. There was a cool confidence about him that was just shy of arrogance. His gaze raked over her, and she decided he wasn’t shy of anything.

“Yes. May I have it, please?” She held out her gloved hand.

“How about I offer it in trade for your name?”

She scowled at him. “How about you just give it to me and cease this preposterousness?” She kept her voice low, and the end of that word rushed from her mouth in an angry hiss.

He exhaled but didn’t look perturbed in the slightest. “I don’t know why you find my amiability preposterous.”

Because you’re a degenerate scoundrel. Instead of voicing what was in her mind, she forced a smile. “I am merely in a hurry. I am Miss Breckenridge. The cane, please?”

He set it in her hand but made sure to brush his fingertips along the edge of her palm.

Ivy closed her fist around the cane and yanked her hand back.

He arched a dark brow at her. “You’re a bit touchy, aren’t you?”

“And you’re more than a bit unseemly. Good afternoon.” She turned and marched from the drawing room, paying no attention to anyone who might’ve witnessed their conversation. She hadn’t noticed if anyone was close enough to hear them. No, she’d been too intent on him.

Purchase:Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Kobo

Add to Goodreads
Review:
OMG, I knew I was going to love Ivy’s story–I’ve been dying to find out what her backstory was for three books now–but how much I loved it still managed to take me by surprise.

Because, Ivy. And West. Seriously, they’re right up there in my top ten favorite couples. Heck, they’re probably in the top five.

Ivy’s been a mystery for the whole series–she was befriended by the other wallflowers at the start of book one (The Forbidden Duke ) but most of her life before and after that point remained a mystery, even to Nora, Lucy, and Aquilla. We knew there was something big and tragic there–everything about her screamed huge secrets–but it wasn’t until she got her own book that we found out what they were. And how appropriate is it that the Duke of Desire (though she lobbied hard for Debauchery or Depravity) become her hero?

So. Appropriate.

And whoa, Ms. Burke did a great job of making a guy who at first seemed like a total sleezeball (I would have been right there with Ivy once upon a time, casting my vote for Debauchery as well) into such an amazingly great guy. I mean, I am still shuddering when I think too hard about it, because no condoms (didn’t they have French letters yet? Because, scary…) but overall his reasons behind and for doing what he’d been doing up until Ivy were so much better than I ever could have come up with. But then he met Ivy, so…sigh.

I was a bit distressed when I realized that this book meant that all four of the original heroines had their HEAs, but was thrilled to hear that a book five (the hero is connected to a secondary character here) is in the works (and that West’s best friend also has a “Duke” moniker courtesy of the girls, so surely he’ll get a book too, soon?) because I am absolutely not ready to leave the world of the Untouchables behind!

The Duke of Desire would work fine as a standalone, though if you (like me!) have read the other series books and been dying for Ivy to get her HEA, this one will be all the more satisfying for you.

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

Check out the other books in The Untouchables series:

Meet the Author:

Darcy Burke is the USA Today Bestselling Author of hot, action-packed historical and sexy, emotional contemporary romance. A native Oregonian, Darcy lives on the edge of wine country with her guitar-strumming husband, their two hilarious kids who seem to have inherited the writing gene, and three Bengal cats. Visit Darcy online at www.darcyburke.com and sign up for her newsletter, follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/darcyburke, or like her Facebook page, www.facebook.com/DarcyBurkeFans.

Connect with Darcy: Site | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Giveaway:

  • $35 Amazon Gift Card

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway