New Release and Giveaway! NSFW by Piper Lawson

 

About the Book:

Being bad never felt so good…
The office is full of rules. Everything is off-limits. Making a charity calendar of the sexy guys on your floor? Not allowed. Shrinking your boss’ underwear when he sends it for dry-cleaning? Can’t do that either.
But those things keep the natural balance. See, Avery Banks, our resident rising star, is a shark. The tall, blond, and gorgeous kind with zero patience and even less forgiveness.
Good thing I’m the Mae West of executive assistants. I live to put grown men in their place.
He wasn’t supposed to find out…
Now he’s made it his personal vendetta to screw me the way I screwed him. I’m at his beck and call, 24/7, for every humiliating, meaningless request.
Until we stumble on a new game. One we both want to play. One we both need to win.
And once we start…I’m not sure Avery wants to replace me.
I’m not sure I want him to.
All I want is more of this. The fire under the ice. What happens behind closed doors.
It’s twisted, and so damn hot. But he’s my boss. And with the company coming off a scandal even I couldn’t engineer? What we’re doing is strictly NSFW.
Lucky for me, Avery and I have one thing in common…
We both suck at following the rules.
 

Purchase: Amazon

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Meet the Author:

I love reading and writing stories where the girls aren’t doormats, the guys aren’t asshats, and secondary characters aren’t second-class citizens. A card-carrying millennial, I have two business degrees and zero hope of starting a fashion label (unlike my Travesty characters!). I crave quirk the way some people crave kink, and believe life is too short not to do what—and who—you love.

My home base near Toronto, Canada is shared with my wonderful sig other. He’s the perfect man for me because not only is he tall dark & handsome, he will beta read for me under duress. And really, that’s what love is. Beta reading under duress.

Connect: Site | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Giveaway:

  • $25 Amazon Gift Card

New Release Review! PERILOUS TRUST by Barbara Freethy (Off the Grid #1)

 

In PERILOUS TRUST, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author Barbara Freethy brings you the first book in a new romantic suspense series! OFF THE GRID: An FBI Series offers five breath-stealing books filled with action-packed plot, heart-stopping romance, and page-turning suspense.

It was one dark night that brought Damon Wolfe and Sophie Parker together. They were two tortured souls, looking for escape, and they weren’t supposed to see each other ever again…

Four years later, Sophie’s FBI father, who is also Damon’s mentor, is killed in a suspicious car crash after leaving Sophie a cryptic message to trust no one from the agency. When Damon shows up looking for her, she isn’t sure if he’s friend or enemy, but she knows he could easily rip apart what is left of her heart.

The last thing Damon wants is to get involved with Sophie again. It was hard enough to walk away the first time. But she’s in trouble, her father’s reputation is under attack, and the lives of his fellow agents are at stake if there’s a traitor in their midst.

When someone starts shooting at them, they have no choice but to go on the run and off the grid. Everyone in their world becomes a suspect. They want to uncover the truth, but will it turn out to be the last thing they expect? Proving her father’s innocence might just cost them their hearts…and their lives…

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Excerpt:

“Why did you run away from your apartment, your friends, your father’s coworkers? Why did you just disappear, Sophie?” Damon asked.

“Because someone killed my dad.”

“It’s possible it was an accident.”

“You don’t believe that any more than I do.”

“Maybe not, but I think something specific spooked you.”

“You mean like the two men I saw going into my apartment building?”

“You saw the men who broke into your apartment?” he asked in surprise.

“I don’t know if they were the ones, but they could have been.”

“What did they look like?”

“Law enforcement, maybe—I don’t know.”

Damon stared back at her, and she could see him running through her words in his head. “Why would you be afraid of law enforcement when your father is FBI?”

“Gut instinct,” she lied, knowing she wouldn’t have been afraid at all if her father hadn’t told her to be. “And it looks like I was right to run. If I’d gone to my apartment, who knows what would have happened?”

His lips drew into a hard line. “Look, Sophie, I want to help you.”

“Why? Why on earth would you want to help me?”

His gaze darkened, and the air sizzled between them as they found themselves back in a place probably neither of them wanted to revisit, but they were there all the same.

“We’re not friends,” she said quickly, needing to break the tension. “We’re not anything. We haven’t seen each other in four years. Why do you care where I am, what I’m doing? Is it because of loyalty to my dad? That has to be it, right? Nothing else could have made you drive all the way up here.”

“I should have called you after that night,” he said.

“I’m not looking for an apology.”

“Aren’t you?”

“No. Maybe. No,” she said, hating to sound so uncertain. “None of that is important now. I have bigger problems.”

“Then let’s talk about now,” he said, relief in his eyes as he changed the subject. “I respected your father. He was a mentor to me. I owe him for that, and I know that he would want me to help you. He trusted me, and I hope you can trust me, too.”

“I don’t know if my father trusted you,” she said, shaking her head.

Surprise and anger flared in his eyes. “Why would you say that?”

“Because he told me not to trust anyone from the bureau, and since you’re an agent, that includes you. Please, just go. Just leave me alone,” she pleaded, desperate to get him out of the cabin before she did something even more stupid—like start to trust him. “I’ll disappear. I’ll go somewhere no one else knows about. You don’t have to worry about me. You’ve done your duty. You came after me. You did that for my dad. Now do something for me—leave me alone. You’ve managed it for four years. You can keep going.”

His mouth tightened. “I’m not leaving you alone. You won’t be safe. You can’t get help from a friend, because you’ll put them in danger, and even if you are very careful, you’ll make a mistake. You don’t know how to stay off the radar, but I do. You’re going to have to trust someone at some point. You’re going to have to put your anger aside and let it be me.”

Before she could answer, she was suddenly hit with a shower of glass from the nearby window.

What the hell had just happened?

Another pane blew out, and something whizzed by her ear.

Damon grabbed her arm and pulled down as a third window exploded.

Someone was shooting at her!

 

 

Review:

This book has a great premise and a solid start–it had me hooked from the very first page, and I was on the edge of my seat to see what would happen next for Damon and Sophie and to a lesser degree, Bree and Wyatt. Damon and Sophie had a (brief) history as well, which also piqued my interest, and kept me turning pages, wanting to see what they would do with it. The suspense part of the story was solid, I honestly didn’t know who did what and exactly why until the end, when all was revealed. (Quick question–do real-life antagonists really tell all in the end to the heroes, even if they think they’ve already won? It really seems more like convenient fictional exposition than realism…still, at least we get to know the truth.)

Somewhere in the second half of the story, though, the suspense became more real than the romance. It felt like Sophie and Damon went from “let’s try and forget about that awkwardly-ending night four years ago” to love a little too fast, skipping some crucial steps in between along the way. Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to believe in their relationship, but it didn’t feel like there was enough foundation laid down for what it was supposed to be becoming. Still, I did like them together and their epilogue was darn cute.

The next two books will be Bree and Wyatt’s, and I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for them. Even though this story wasn’t perfect, Ms. Freethy definitely grabbed my interest with her characters and I’m looking forward to more gotta-find-out-the-truth suspense.

Rating: 3 1/2 stars / B

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

About the author:

Barbara Freethy is a #1 New York Times Bestselling Author of 60 novels ranging from contemporary romance to romantic suspense and women’s fiction. Traditionally published for many years, Barbara opened Fog City Publishing in 2011 and has since sold over 7 million books! Twenty-three of her titles have appeared on the New York Times and USA Today Bestseller Lists, including one title, SUMMER SECRETS, which hit #1 on the NYT. In 2014 Barbara was named the Amazon KDP Bestselling Author of all time! She was also the first Indie writer to sell over a million books on Barnes and Noble.

Known for her emotional and compelling stories of love, family, romance and suspense, Barbara is a six-time finalist and two-time winner in the Romance Writers of America acclaimed RITA contest for her novels DANIEL’S GIFT and THE WAY BACK HOME.

For more information, visit her website at www.barbarafreethy.com

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New Release! PLANNING PENELOPE by Erin Lockwood

We’re celebrating the release of PLANNING PENELOPE by Erin Lockwood!

 

PLANNING PENELOPE
by Erin Lockwood
Psychological Suspense/Romance

Blurb:
Alexander George Bishop V has an obsession. He controls every detail of her life, and she doesn’t even know he exists.
Everything always goes as planned … until it doesn’t.
Excerpt:
She has an oral fixation, so I have an oral fixation—hers.
Usually, it’s a pen cap, a pencil, or the plastic lid of her coffee cup, but tonight, she has nothing but her fingers lingering over her soft light-pink pout. I’ve been watching those lips and anything that comes near them for years now. It’s more than my obsession. This woman has become my masterpiece, and I’m the unknown author.
I won’t let anything chip away at my creation.
Especially this guy.
He’s standing behind her, carnal determination obvious on his face and with a fierce urge to bite into the skin on her back. I can see it in his eyes, the way they’re focused on her flesh. He leans forward, and my protective glands swell in my throat.
Although I’m several feet away and one level down, I lean in, as he did, but with anticipation to lurch.
She’s resting on the railing, staring out at the band onstage, unaware of what is about to hit her. Her left elbow is touching the metal bar, but her fingers are on her delicate, smooth pout, touching so lightly across, back and forth.
The loud nightclub drowns out one of her key senses. So, mine heighten in response.
I move to set down my beer. I’m ready. Ready to fight for her and keep her from the predator lurking at her back—the one messing with my masterpiece. He moves closer to her skin and bends his head to kiss the top of her shoulder. She doesn’t flinch.
I exhale a deep breath I didn’t realize I was holding.
She turns around, wraps her arms around him, and kisses him on his mouth. Her delicate, smooth lips are on his unworthy mouth. My jaw muscles tighten, and my teeth clench. This makes me angry, but I won’t act on it. Not yet.
“Alex, what’s wrong?” Kevin asks, nudging me with his elbow, still keeping his beer close to his face.
“Nothing,” I tell him and turn to pick up my beer from the high-top where I set it.
My eyes go back to her. They have been seeing each other for a few weeks, but I know it won’t last much longer. Not after
tomorrow. Not after what I found out. This one isn’t the worst, but he’s still not good enough.
Her typical type—blond, tall, fair-to-medium skin—Hitler’s dream and my worst nightmare. I knew he would be a threat when they crossed paths last month. I keep them away as best I can, but there are too many unpredictable forces in life.

 

About the Author:

Erin Lockwood grew up in Castro Valley, California and attended the University of Oregon, where she graduated in 2003 with a degree in journalism. From there she moved to Denver and spent the next seven years searching for the love of her life and building the family of her dreams.

It wasn’t long until, with children starting preschool and more time on her hands, Erin refocused on her career, beginning with a successful entry into the world of residential real estate as a Realtor. Free time was spent reading book after book (and binge-watching the subsequent films) in the New Adult genre. Feeling hopelessly in love with her husband, she wrote him a short story leading up to their fifth wedding anniversary. That’s when she discovered her tireless passion to share her experience of falling in love through fictional characters. That story evolved into the first novel in the Angles trilogy.

Erin still lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband, Phil, and their three children.

New Release! CLUES OF THE HEART by Maryann Jordan (Baytown Boys #3)

 
 
Book – Clues of the Heart
Author – Maryann Jordan  
Series  – Baytown Boys
Hosted By – Hooked On Books Promotions
 
 
 
Military duty called them away to war zones, but after tours overseas, the group of friends found their way back home as men, seeking the peaceful little seaside town. Now, the band of brothers, together once more, work to provide a place for less fortunate veterans to call home.
 
Katelyn MacFarlane had loved…and lost, when her young fiancé was killed in action. Now, six years later, still at the same job in Baytown, she feels as though life is passing her by. 
 
Gareth Harrison, the town’s private investigator, has had his eye on the beautiful bartender since he moved to town, and offering her a job gives her the change she needs. Treading carefully, he wonders if Katelyn’s broken heart can learn to love again.
 
When a body is discovered on the local golf course, the missing persons case they’ve been working on suddenly takes a new turn. Racing to find clues to the killer, they also discover clues to their hearts.
 
****Due to scenes of an explicit sexual nature and language that some consider crude, please be warned – for 18+ only! If you do not like alphas with heart who fall instantly in love with strong female characters while dealing with real life issues…again be warned!!*****
 
 
 
 
 
 

As an Amazon Best Selling Author, I have always been an avid reader. I joke that I “cut my romance teeth” on the historical romance books. In 2013 I started a blog to showcase wonderful writers. In 2014, I finally gave in to the characters in my head pleading for their story to be told. Thus, Emma’s Home was created.

My first novel, Emma’s Home became an Amazon Best Seller in 3 categories within the first month of publishing. Its success was followed by the rest of the Fairfield Series and then led into the Love’s Series.  From there I have continued with the romantic suspense Alvarez Security Series and now the Saints Protection & Investigation Series, all bestsellers.

My books are filled with sweet romance and hot sex; mystery, suspense, real life characters and situations. My heroes are alphas, take charge men who love the strong, independent women they fall in love with.

I worked as a counselor in a high school and have been involved in education for the past 30 years.  I recently retired and now can spend more time devoted to my writing.

I have been married to a wonderfully patient man for 34 years and have 2 adult, very supportive daughters.

When writing, my dog or one of my cats will usually be found in my lap!

I love to hear from readers, so please email me!

 
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Release Day! FIREFLY by Molly McAdams (A Redemption novel)

Title: Firefly
Author: Molly McAdams
Series: A Redemption Novel
Genre: Romantic Suspense

The next captivating installment in New York Times bestselling author Molly McAdams’s Redemption series.

As the Princess of the Irish-American Mob, there’s no shortage of men ready to help guard and protect me. To slowly suffocate me to the point of seeking freedom—a place where I can breathe.

Kieran Hayes has been saving me for as long as I can remember. It’s in his blood, and one of the many reasons I fell in love with him. Until my favorite trait became his biggest flaw, making me resent the man I love. An unwavering warrior, his love for me has been shrouded by those instincts.

Save Lily. Protect Lily. Hide Lily. Cage Lily.

What I wasn’t prepared for was Dare—the man who would set my world on fire with just one touch. He saw straight through to my soul, as though he knew I was desperate for freedom, and silently demanded my heart from the beginning.

And I didn’t expect Dare to be Demitri Borello—the reason for so many deaths in my family. A man who will take my life the moment he finds out who I am.

Despite it all, I’ll love him until that moment comes.

A fire will die if there is no oxygen for it to consume. Ours is rapidly stealing every last breath we can sacrifice to it.

***The Redemption series is a series of romantic suspense standalones***

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“I’m wrecked, ruined, destroyed, and in awe.” – #1 New York Times bestselling author, Rachel Van Dyken

 

A powerhouse romantic suspense that will have you questioning your morals and second guessing your view on love.

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Molly grew up in California but now lives in the oh-so-amazing state of Texas with her husband, daughter, and fur babies. When she’s not diving into the world of her characters, some of her hobbies include hiking, snowboarding, traveling, and long walks on the beach … which roughly translates to being a homebody with her hubby and dishing out movie quotes. She has a weakness for crude-humored movies and fried pickles, and loves curling up in a fluffy comforter during a thunderstorm … or under one in a bathtub if there are tornados. That way she can pretend they aren’t really happening.

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Kendra C. Highley, Author of THE PERFECTLY IMPERFECT MATCH (Suttonville Sentinels #3) Talks About the Best and Worst Writing Advice She Ever Got (with a giveaway!)

The best (and/or worst!) writing advice I ever got was…

When you’re new to writing and joining critique groups to improve your craft, the advice flows like milk and honey. For any parents out there, it’s a lot like when you have a new baby and experienced parents can’t wait to share their wisdom. The hard part in either case is knowing what works and what doesn’t.

The best piece(s) of advice I received when I was starting out were: Read in your genre, and don’t quit. Both of those things are hard, believe it or not. I was an avid reader of YA before I started writing, but stopped for fear of accidentally “stealing” another author’s work. That really isn’t the case—in order to write well in your chosen genre, you need to know the conventions. Learning how to break them comes much later. Reading authors you admire is motivating, too. As for not quitting? If the words burn inside of you, write. Publishing is a fickle business. If being published is your dream, first, you must write. If telling stories is what you love, write. Keep going, surround yourself with people who tell you that you can, and let those words out.

The worst piece of advice I think every new writer hears is “if you don’t write every day, you might as well quit now!” Rubbish. I had the flu in March. I was on deadline, but there was no way I could write in that state. Sometimes I don’t write because I’m doing something for my kids and there isn’t time in the day. Sometimes, I give myself a break, because, knowing me, I’ll burn out if I don’t. And there’s a difference between spending ten hours at your keyboard, and thinking about characters, plot points, and world building on your way to work. That counts. If you’re thinking about your book, you’re working on it. Writing isn’t always about butt in chair. The truth is, life happens. Don’t beat yourself up over a piece of advice that works for some, but doesn’t work for you.

Those are the pieces of advice I think about most—what about you?

 

About the author:

Kendra C. Highley lives in north Texas with her husband and two children. She also serves as staff to four self-important and high-powered cats. This, according to the cats, is her most important job. She believes in everyday magic, extraordinary love stories, and the restorative powers of dark chocolate.

 

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The Perfectly Imperfect Match (Suttonville Sentinels #3)
by Kendra C. Highley
Publication Date:  July 10, 2017
Publisher:  Entangled Teen Crush

 

Pitcher Dylan Dennings has his future all mapped out: make the minors straight out of high school, work his way up the farm system, and get called up to the majors by the time he’s twenty-three. The Plan has been his sole focus for years, and if making his dreams come true means instituting a strict “no girls” policy, so be it.

Lucy Foster, needlepoint ninja, big sister to an aspiring pitcher, and chicken advocate, likes a little mayhem. So what if she gets lost taking her brother to baseball camp…at her own high school? The pitching coach, some hotshot high school player, obviously thinks she’s a hot mess. Too bad he’s cute, because he’s so not her type.

Problem is, they keep running into each other, and every interaction sparks hotter than the last. But with Dylan’s future on the line, he has to decide whether some rules are made to be broken…

Disclaimer: This book contains a crazy night of moonlit skinny-dipping, a combustible crush, and kisses swoony enough to unwind even the most Type A athlete.


Other books in the series:

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New Release and Giveaway! PAINTBRUSH by Hannah Bucchin

Paintbrush
Hannah Bucchin
Published by: Blaze Publishing
Publication date: July 11th 2017
Genres: Romance, Young Adult

Mitchell Morrison and Josie Sedgwick have spent their whole lives at the Indian Paintbrush Community Village, a commune full of colorful characters tucked in the mountains of North Carolina, and they aren’t particularly close–at least, not anymore. Josie wishes she could spend all of her time at Paintbrush planting tomatoes, hiking the trails, or throwing giant communal birthday parties, while Mitchell can’t wait to escape the bizarre spiritual sharing and noisy community dinners. Luckily for both of them, high school graduation is just around the corner.

But when Mitchell’s mother makes a scandalous announcement that rocks the close-knit Paintbrush community, and Josie’s younger sister starts to make some dangerously bad decisions, the two find themselves leaning on each other for support – and looking at each other in a whole new light. Their childhood friendship blossoms in to something more as they deal with their insane families, but as graduation approaches, so does life in the real world, forcing Josie and Mitchell to figure out what, exactly, their relationship is – and if it can survive their very different plans for the future.

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SNEAK PEEKS:

Mitchell
“Hi.” I tighten my grip on her waist, and she moves her hand from my shoulder, sliding her fingertips slowly, until they rest on the back of my neck. I close my eyes.
When I open them again, she’s staring at me, her face so close I can see the flecks of brown in her green eyes. It would be so easy to kiss her. Just a few inches. It would be the easiest thing in the world.

Josie
“We’re a mess, aren’t we?” He grins at me.
I can’t help it—I lean into him, pressing my shoulder into his, wanting to feel his warmth and his soft sweatshirt, wanting to be a part of that smile.
I shrug. “All the best people are messy.”

 

Author Bio:

Hannah has spent her life falling in love with beautiful places, both real and fictional. She grew up in charming Bethlehem, PA, went to college in sunny Chapel Hill, NC, spent a summer studying wildlife in Tanzania, volunteered on organic farms across New Zealand, and hiked all over Acadia National Park in Maine. When not writing, reading, or adventuring, she likes to daydream about the dog she’ll adopt someday, listen to music from the sixties, and exchange ridiculous texts with her parents and siblings. Paintbrush is her first novel.

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New Release and Giveaway! JUST THE THING by Marie Harte (The Donnigans #2)

A FLING MIGHT BE JUST THE THING…

Gavin Donnigan left the Marine Corps a shell of a man, hounded by guilt for deaths he couldn’t prevent. But teaching a self-defense class at the local gym brings some stability to his life—along with a gorgeous leggy woman who won’t give him the time of day.

Zoe York lost her twin sister to a freak car accident a few months ago. She’s been struggling to bury her grief, but it isn’t until she signs up for a self-defense class with its distractingly hot instructor that she begins to come out of her shell again. With the memory of her sister telling her to live a little, Zoe decides a fling with buns-of-steel Gavin Donnigan might be just the thing.

Soon they’re sparring both in and out of the gym. And for the first time in a long time, each is looking forward to tomorrow.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2t3kTkI
B&N: http://bit.ly/2t3Ay3J
iBooks: http://apple.co/2t3uhoK

 

Excerpt:

Thursday evening, Zoe gaped at the address Gavin had sent her to. She’d been lucky enough to dodge her mother’s phone calls, had missed Cleo stopping by earlier this evening, and had ignored Piper’s texts. Otherwise, she would have shared news of a date she wanted to keep to herself.

Now she had to get through said date without jumping the poor man. Every time she thought about how long she’d sat on him in the gym—knowing exactly what he felt like in those thin shorts, every inch of him excited to be with her—her world turned upside down. Not a prude by any means, she’d still never ground over an aroused man in a public place when she barely knew more than his name.

Well, she’d wanted to do a one-eighty from her normal routine. Cleo and Piper would be pleased. Or at least, they might be if Zoe decided to confide details about this date. Then again, depending on how tonight went, she might never speak to Gavin again. She sure the hell wouldn’t be sleeping with him on their first night out together.

So sad she had to keep reminding herself of that. No one-night stands.

Ever?

Ignoring temptation, she shut her fantasies down tight. No, never.

After parking in the stone driveway of a huge old Victorian house on a nice piece of property in Magnolia,—a pricey area of Seattle that boasted quiet streets, lots of greenery, and amazing views of Puget Sound,—she cautiously left the car. She stared at the house with suspicion, wondering just what Gavin had in store.

He opened the door to greet her. Wearing a pair of well-worn jeans and a faded blue sweatshirt, he looked at home and way too handsome for her peace of mind.

She’d dressed down in jeans and a sweater over a thin T-shirt. With the cool spring evenings, she normally dressed heavier for comfort. A smart idea, considering she had no idea if they’d be indoors or outside tonight.

“This is your place?” she asked, not believing for a second he lived in such a grand, landscaped home. It just seemed all wrong for him.

He chuckled. “Nah. It belongs to a friend of my sister’s. Hope’s house-sitting, but she’s letting me borrow it tonight.”

Zoe followed him into the huge house. It had rich mahogany furnishings, a few sculptures that looked like they cost in the thousands, and the feel of a professional interior designer. No dust, no mess, and everything had its place.

Following him through the entrance and down the hallway, past the stairs to the kitchen, she stopped and gawked. The kitchen had to be as large as her living room, dining room, and pantry combined. It had an island, marble countertops, two sinks, stainless-steel appliances, and a Viking stove—the same high-end one Piper had in her kitchen. A large vase of flowers sat on the island, while the glossy oak table off to the back looked over an expansive patio, which in turn overlooked the ocean.

“Holy crap. This is amazing.”

“I know, right?” Gavin nodded. “Go on, check it out. But keep your sweater on. The fun’s outside.”

“Not sure what that means, but give me a minute. I need some time to take this in.” She walked around the kitchen some more, while he went out to the patio and down some steps to the backyard.

After sadly affirming that she’d never have a kitchen this grand, she made mental notes to share with Cleo, a fellow HGTV addict who would go gaga over this house.

A few moments later, Zoe stepped outside on the patio, looking for Gavin. She still had no idea why he’d brought her to someone else’s home, but it had been worth the drive just to see that kitchen.

“Gavin?” The stone deck ran the entire length of the back of the house and had plenty of room for a table and chair, potted flowers and plants, and a snazzy fire pit embedded in the ground. It was surrounded by rock that had been built up, no doubt to provide a measure of safety.

A glance beyond the deck showed the Sound in all its glory. The sun was setting, and an indigo sky surrounded a blanket of clouds trying to block out the rising moon—and failing. The wind picked up, bringing a chill to the air. But the crisp scent of salt water cleaned everything around her.

Zoe breathed in and out, knowing a sense of serenity she’d been missing of late.

“Over here,” Gavin called.

She gave up her view of the water and found him on the side of house, in a corner of the lot with trees on one side and the patio on the other. Talk about a nice amount of privacy. The clearing had several boxes filled with green and growing things. And there, in the distance, a small greenhouse.

She blinked, feeling as if she’d stepped into her version of heaven.

“Well? Don’t just stand there.” Gavin nodded at a small assortment of gardening tools on the ground beside him. A trowel, a weeder, a spade, and a shovel. “The gloves are for you.”

They looked brand new. She picked up the pink set, tugged off the tags, and put them on. “Pink?”

He smiled. “You like ’em? Maybe you can wear them with your yoga pants at the gym sometime.”

“You’re obsessed with those pants, aren’t you?”

He chuckled. “Come on. We need to weed.” He crouched down and reached a hand out to some overflowing green. “But I’m not sure if that’s a plant or—”

“Stop. That’s not a weed.” She gently nudged him out of the way before he could kill the coreopsis and garden phlox around some limp tulips. He handed her the snips, and she clipped the spent tulip blooms, then did a bit more pruning and pulled a few real weeds. She showed him the difference, then answered his questions about what to plant when and how to separate a few daylily bulbs that really should have been split before now. So lost in the gardening, it took Zoe a good half an hour before she realized this was to be the extent of her date.

Peering over her shoulder, she frowned at Gavin and turned to face him, standing so that they could look eye to eye. Or rather, eye to throat. She had to glance up to see his gaze. “This is our date?” Gardening?

The pleasure seemed to leach out of him as he looked down at her. “Uh, yeah. Why? You don’t like it? We don’t have to play around all night in the dirt or anything.”

“You thought I’d like weeding someone else’s garden for hours?”

He sighed. “Stupid idea, right?”

“No, not at all.” She stared at him. “How did you know I’m into plants?” Fascinating. He’d chosen one of her favorite things to do, and he seemed to be interested in her explanations about planting and zones and soil type.

“I overheard you at the gym. You and Loretta talk about gardens as if they’re the second coming. I wanted to do something different with you, and I thought you might like this.” He smiled. “You did say sex was off the table.”

She nodded absently, disconcerted that he’d read her so well. “I like this. Do you?”

He flexed his dirty fingers, because he apparently hadn’t bought himself any gloves. “Surprisingly, yeah. It feels…good.” He looked bewildered. “It’s just dirt and flowers. But I like putting it all together, maybe seeing it grow.” He stared at her as if she had the answers.

“That’s what I like about it too. I have a small garden in my backyard. I spend a lot of time caring for my flowers and veggies. It’s fun for me, and I like knowing my hard work will pay off in tomatoes or green beans, maybe even cucumbers.”

“Fresh is best,” he agreed.

She smiled with him. The moon darted behind clouds, then broke out over them both once more. She shivered when the wind made another pass.

“Wait here,” Gavin ordered. “I mean, don’t stop digging and stuff. I’ll be back.”

He left, and she assumed a new spot by another bed, where lilies and clusters of out-of-control lavender congregated. He returned with a tray of cocoa and marshmallows, all served on some fancy-looking crockery. “Wasn’t sure if you liked coffee or tea, but thought I couldn’t go wrong with cocoa.”

“Yes.” Chocolate, one of her major weaknesses. She tried to eat healthy, but the heaven known as liquid milk chocolate constantly called to her. As did those mini marshmallows.

He handed her a mug and watched her with intense eyes.

After a few decadent sips, she frowned. “Do I have marshmallow on my lip or something?” Then she licked her lips just to be sure they were clean.

“Did you have to do that? I’ve been so good, behaving myself.” He took the mug from her and set it on the wooden border of the flowerbed, then moved into her personal space.

She refused to back up, so they stood so close that she nearly bumped his chin when she tilted her face up to see him better.

“You’re so pretty. Even when you’re not wearing pink,” he teased, his voice soft on the cool wind.

The moment seemed like a freeze frame from the most romantic scene ever. She still tasted chocolate. The moon overhead lit everything with a preternatural glow. The scents of earth and lavender and Gavin filled her head, until she could focus on nothing but him.

“Gavin?” She didn’t know what she was asking him for, but the promise of safety in his eyes drew her closer.

“I’m gonna kiss you now,” he said, his voice low, warm.

She nodded.

He leaned closer at the same time she did.

Their coming together felt amazing. Perfect. Right. The kiss shook her. Deep, sensual, yet not as close as she wanted. His tongue swept her mouth, caressing while he took charge of the embrace. But not once did he overwhelm her. Instead, she followed him, sip for sip, and let the rush of her heartbeat pull her into a tide of longing she couldn’t suppress. Not now, surrounded by all her favorite things.

“Gavin,” she murmured when he kissed his way from her mouth down her cheek to her throat.

He pulled her to him, but their clothes kept them too far apart. Gentle bites down her throat ended in a soft kiss that caused a full-body shiver.

“Cold?” he whispered as he straightened.

She shook her head, unable to speak, and blinked into his shuttered gaze. Then he made everything worse. He tucked her head under his chin and hugged her with affection. No way she could chalk this up as a gambit to get her to bed, not when he had the gall to make her feel.

With a sigh, he ended the embrace and pulled back. “Now show me which ones I can pull and which ones I can’t.” He nodded at the third flower bed they hadn’t gotten to yet, not winded or affected by their kiss, apparently. Hell. Zoe couldn’t feel his heartbeat through their clothes, but hers raced like a thoroughbred intent on taking the Triple Crown.

The bastard had the nerve to wipe a clean thumb over her lower lip, causing that thoroughbred to run past the finish line with no signs of stopping.

“I have the urge to flip you again, right here,” she rasped. For starting something he wouldn’t finish. And for making her want to finish it, regardless of their newness.

He smirked, as if reading her mind. “I know. I can’t stop thinking about us in the gym either.”

“That’s not what I meant.”

He wiggled his brows. “I think it is. Next time I’m flat on my back, I’ll be thinking only of you, Mistress.”

“You’re such a pain.”

“I know. It’s a gift.”

She wanted to smack him, so she did. When his laughter ended, she pulled him close and planted a kiss on him that had him panting and grabbing for her—but this time she had the presence of mind to disentangle herself. “Now,” she said, her voice hoarse, “grab that trowel and let’s get back to work.”

He kept staring at her mouth. “Trowel?”

She groaned, because she wanted to get back to that kiss as well. “Why me?”

About the author:

Caffeine addict, boy referee, and romance aficionado, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Marie Harte has over 100 books published with more constantly on the way. She’s a confessed bibliophile and devotee of action movies. Whether hiking in Central Oregon, biking around town, or hanging at the local tea shop, she’s constantly plotting to give everyone a happily ever after. Visit http://marieharte.com and fall in love.

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New Release and Giveaway! THE CHARM OFFENSIVE by Cari Lynn Webb


On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

The Charm Offensive
by Cari Lynn Webb
Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 384 pages
July 1st 2017 by Harlequin Heartwarming

Winning her over means winning everything

Sophie Callahan is PI Brad Harrington’s best lead to tracking down the man he’s been hired to bring to justice: Sophie’s own thieving father. But when Brad arrives at The Pampered Pooch, just behind a litter of stray kittens, the pet-store owner is the big surprise. This scrappy, huge-hearted woman with charm to spare gets to Brad in a way no one has ever been able to before. She spends her life finding—and making—homes for others: abandoned pets, her young niece. He’ll have to tell her why he’s really here. Which means he’ll have to choose between his sail-away dreams and the chance to build a forever home—with her.

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Excerpt:

“I lied.” His voice was low, as if dredged through the darkness. “I do want something from you.”

Sophie watched him and waited. The attic closed in as if embracing them, but a shiver shifted through the air, rippling across her skin. “What?”

Brad tugged her against him. “This.”

The attic sighed; the walls closed in on them as his lips fell against hers. He never let her lock herself back down. Every obstacle she threw up, he destroyed. First with his words. Now with his touch. He teased, he pried and he learned. And he offered—temptation, tenderness and safety.

Sophie stopped fighting, stopped running and stopped hiding. There was so much she couldn’t be. Couldn’t have. But this moment, she’d take this.

Sophie pulled away before she took too much. Before she fell too far. Before she discovered too much of the heart she refused to recognize. “I better check on Ella. It’s a school night.” She spun and raced down the stairs, hoping to outrun her budding feelings for Brad.

 

About the Author:

Cari Lynn Webb lives in South Carolina with her husband, daughters and assorted four-legged family members. She’s been blessed to see the power of true love in her grandparent’s 70 year marriage and her parent’s marriage of over 50 years. She knows love isn’t always sweet and perfect, it can be challenging, complicated and risky. But she believes happily-ever-afters are worth fighting for. She loves to connect with readers. Visit her at her website.

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Tour Giveaway

 1 winner will receive a Baubelle Expandable, Inspirational Charm Bracelet and signed copy of Make Me a Match (US only)
 1 winner will receive a $50 Amazon e-gift card and ebook of Make Me a Match (open internationally)
– Ends July 14th

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Tour Schedule:

July 2nd: Launch
July 3rd:
It’s All About the Romance
With Love for Books
Brooke Blogs
Christian Suspense Author Mary Alford
Deal Sharing Aunt
July 5th:
Hearts & Scribbles
A Baker’s Perspective
Katie’s Clean Book Collection
Becky on Books
July 6th:
Paulette’s Papers
Thoughts of a Blonde
Mel’s Shelves
Harlie’s Books
July 7th:
Bookworm Lisa
Rockin’ Book Reviews
Christy’s Cozy Corners
July 9th:
Reading Is My SuperPower
Heidi Reads…
Inside the Mind of an Avid Reader
Book Lover in Florida
July 10th: Grand Finale

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New Release Spotlight! CITY BOY–HOT OFF THE ICE #1 by A.E. Wasp


City Boy – Hot Off The Ice 1

By A.E. Wasp


BLURB

Follow the money or follow your heart?

All Bryce Lowery knows how to do is play hockey. He’s been playing professionally since he was fifteen. Twenty years later, he’s rich, famous, tired, and alone. And possibly gay according to his ex-wife.

When a blown tire leads directly to mind-blowing sex with a motorcycle-riding white knight named Dakota, Bryce discovers he is most definitely gay. When his white knight turns out to be the manager of the apple orchard he inherited from some distant relative, he discovers that everything he thought he knew about himself was wrong.

Now Bryce has a tough choice to make, follow the money to a new multimillion dollar contract, or follow his heart into the unknown?

All Dakota Ryan knows how to do is grow apples. Now at twenty-four, he faces losing both his home and his livelihood in one cruel twist of fate.

Then Bryce Lowery crashes into his life like the answer to all Dakota’s prayers. Not only does the gorgeous, older professional athlete have the money to save the orchard, but he’s whispering promises to make all of Dakota’s wildest dreams come true. But Dakota knows better than to give his heart to someone who could leave, and if life has taught him anything, it’s that everyone leaves.

Dakota has a choice, sit back and wait for Bryce to decide his fate, or for the first time in his life, chose what he wants his future to be?

City Boy is a first time gay, fish out of water, May/December love story with a HEA.

Buy on Amazon!
Snippet #1

Dakota sighed, head dropping down onto Bryce’s chest. “So, how was it for you?” He tilted his head up so he could see Bryce’s face. From this angle, his beard looked fluffy, and Dakota had the urge to scratch him under his chin like a big cat.

He could see Bryce searching for the right words, so he didn’t push. The silence stretched comfortably. Seemed like neither of them was in a hurry to leave this unexpected sanctuary and get back to the real world.

“Well, it’s funny,” Bryce said, running his fingers through Dakota’s hair and cupping the back of Dakota’s head in the palm of his hand. “I’ve never liked this after part before with women. I did it because it’s the right thing to do, but I would always make an excuse to get up as soon as possible. But I really want to keep touching you.”

“And that’s good?” Dakota asked.

Bryce smiled down at him, laugh lines crinkling at the edge of his dark brown eyes. “I always wanted it to feel like this.”

Dakota’s heart thudded in his chest. The way Bryce had Dakota tucked up against him felt really good. Scarily good. A part of Dakota’s mind beat its terrified wings against his skull, telling him to get up and leave now. How did this happen? Dakota had a hard time letting his friends get close to him. He certainly didn’t cuddle with strangers.

Dakota had worried that Bryce would somehow imprint on him. Now Dakota wasn’t sure he wanted to let the man go. Not only was Bryce smoking hot, but he was also sweet, considerate, and kind. And, Dakota suspected, had the potential to be fantastic in bed.



SNIPPET #2

What did Dakota see in Bryce’s eyes? His brows lowered as he seemed to be searching for something. Bryce tried to open up and let his emotions show in his eyes, hoping that one of the was what Dakota needed.

Who had he become in these too-short weeks?

This moment seemed separate from any that come before in Bryce’s life. His universe had narrowed to a rundown VW bus at the backend of an orchard in the shadow of the Rocky Mountain where he sat poised on the edge of understanding something he had no name for.

The energy between them built, the lights and the heady smell of the incense swirling around the air. A slight buzz from the brownie made every movement syrupy-slow and fanned Bryce’s desire.

Somewhere inside Bryce, a damn broke. Everything he had ever wanted to feel, everything he had held back or assumed he lacked, crashed over him, and, with a small ooh he closed his eyes, breaking the connection.

Dakota surged forward, pulling Bryce’s shirt off as he lowered him gently to the mattress. Somehow despite being unwilling to stop kissing each other, they managed to get undressed.



SNIPPET #3

“I’ve never seen the ocean.” Dakota said his voice flat. “I’ve never been anywhere.”

Bryce scratched his fingers through Dakota curls, pulling them and letting them bounce back. “I’ve been to so many amazing places.”

“Yeah. I know.” Dakota yanked his head away with frown.

Bryce didn’t let him go, pulling him back against his side. “No, let me finish. All these places were amazing, but I was always kind of sad. I’ve never been with somebody I—someone who is special to me.”

“What about with Nikki?”

“Except for our honeymoon, I never went anyplace romantic alone with Nikki,” he confessed. “Even the honeymoon was awkward.”

Dakota turned on his side and slid his leg over Bryce’s leg. “How? Were you a virgin?” Dakota asked lightly.

Bryce brushed off the joking tone in his voice and answered seriously. “No. Worse. All the things that were supposed to be romantic? I just wasn’t feeling it. I didn’t feel lost in her eyes in the candlelight or anything. I didn’t want to spend hours in bed.”

He ran his hand up and down Dakota’s arm, enjoying the soft tickle of his hair and the firmness of the muscle. “I convinced myself that nobody felt that way; that everyone was faking it because that’s how we were told it’s supposed to feel when you’re in love.”

“And now?” Dakota tensed in his arms.

Bryce pushed up and rolled until he hovered over Dakota, looking him right in his eyes. Dakota was going to listen to him whether he wanted to or not.

“Now, I want to take you down to Mexico, get a cabana on a private beach, one with a giant bed and an outdoor shower. The I’d drag you inside and not come out for two weeks. I want people to bring us coconuts and fresh fish and tequila and leave it at our door.”

Dakota stared back at him, hands on Bryce’s hips. His fingers adding more bruises to the marks he’d already left on Bryce’s skin. “You could do that, couldn’t you?”

“In a heartbeat.” And he wanted to, so badly. Badly enough to give up hockey? If he only had himself to worry about? In a heartbeat.

Author Bio:

After time spent raising children, earning several college degrees, and traveling the world with the U.S. State Department, she is returning to her first love – writing.
A dreamer and an idealist, Amy writes about people finding connection in a world that can seem lonely and magic in a world that can seem all too mundane. She invites readers into her characters’ lives and worlds when they are their most vulnerable, their most human, living with the same hopes and fears we all have. An avid traveler who has lived in big cities and small towns in four different continents, Amy has found that time and distance are no barriers to love. She invites her readers to reach out and share how her characters have touched their lives or how the found families they have gathered around them have shaped their worlds.
Born on Long Island, NY, Amy has lived in Los Angeles, London, and Bangkok. She currently lives in Colorado in a town suspiciously like the ones in her books.

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