New Release Review and Giveaway! WORTH THE WAIT by AJ Pine (Kingston Ale House #4)


WORTH THE WAIT
by AJ Pine
Kingston Ale House #4
Publication Date: January 16, 2017
Genres: Adult, Entangled: Select, Contemporary Romance

 

Synopsis:

I like to think of myself as a man of pleasure…I enjoy a good pint of ale, being in the arms of a beautiful woman, and living by my own rules. The only thing I try to avoid? Commitment. And I’ve got a three-year success rate to prove it.

I wasn’t planning on Grace—the beautiful, funny, totally off-limits massage therapist who keeps popping up in my life. She’s on a six-month mission to rid her life of toxins. No alcohol. No red meat. And, yeah, no men. I’m talking full-on man cleanse.

I know I should walk away, but I can’t…and the only way to keep her in my life is to live by her rules. I’ll need to prove to a woman who’s lost all trust in men that I’m worthy of her love. And do it all without so much as a single kiss.

The only problem? If I win, I’ll lose the one thing I swore I’d never give up. My heart.

Excerpt:

“Grace, honey, I hope you haven’t been waiting long.”

Grace opened her mouth to respond, but the woman cut her off, turning to Jeremy.

“And who’s your tall drink of ginger ale? I thought you were off the man sauce for now. Or is that episode over? Because if it’s not, please tell me you’re keeping him around for when it is. And— Oh! Did you try the Pink Bullet we talked about last time, or are you still relying on the showerhead?”

Jeremy coughed while Grace maintained complete and utter composure despite the woman who must be her Realtor discussing, on the sidewalk, whether or not Grace masturbated.

“What?” the woman added. “Life is too short for mental filters. Say what you want or keep your mouth shut. You keep things bottled up inside, and you’re liable to explode.” She winked. “Yet another reason for the Pink Bullet.”

He raised a brow, intrigued by what his new friend might say in response.

Grace simply let out a long breath. “Lisa,” she said, nodding toward him. “This is my friend, Jeremy. Jeremy, Lisa’s the Realtor who, thankfully, has not leased this place out to anyone else, yet. We’ve known each other as long as I’ve been eyeing it, so she’s kind of privy to the whole cleanse situation.”

Lisa crossed her arms and gave Jeremy the once-over. “God, you two would make fantastic-looking children.” She shook her head. “What a waste. And no, for all the condos I sell, I cannot unload this property. It’s like it’s waiting for our Gracie here.”

He grinned at the sound of the nickname. He bet other people got to call her that, people who knew the real her—all of her. People with whom she spoke freely about her sex life—or lack thereof—and whether or not she pleasured herself.

His dick twitched inside his jeans. Traitor. But how could he blame it? He was conjuring images of Grace touching herself in places that were off-limits to the entirety of the male species, and it was enough to drive him mad.

Friends, he reminded himself, then tried to drum up an antidote.

Nana bringing him cookies when he had the chicken pox as a child.

Nope. That just made him realize he was hungry for something other than kale and that he was still horny.

His ninth-grade English teacher, Mrs. Field. Shit. No. Wrong choice. She was actually kind of hot.

Nurse Elsa, the one who always gave him the flu shot at his old pediatrician’s office. She had that mole above her lip with that one lone hair growing out of it…Yes!

He glanced down at his pants, feeling himself soften.

At ease, soldier.

Review:

Worth the Wait was a sweet story about two people who have been badly burned in relationships finding love again.

Jeremy and Grace have no interest in relationships when they first meet, or when they meet again, or once again. Wait, is the universe trying to tell them something, perhaps? 😉

I really liked the two of them together–so cute!–and loved that Grace’s “cleanse” meant that for 90% of the book their relationship had nothing more physical than the occasional kiss on a forehead or hand. (And some phone calls…but they don’t technically count as getting “physical”, right? ;)) It made for some very sweet moments and meant that the two of them really got to know each other without all of the physical stuff muddying the waters.

Or…did it? There was a bit more confusion/questioning of feelings toward the end than I’d expected–though some of that was each of them doubting themselves, rather than doubting the other one–and I’m still not 100% why Jeremy and Grace didn’t take care of what needed to be taken care of before the hospital visit took place (since we learn about the ER visit and non-kiss in the prologue, I’m not really spoiling anything here–it’ll drive you crazy for most of the book anyway) though I do admit that the circumstances came together to make a pretty memorable resolution overall. It was–wait for it–Worth the Wait. 😉

The Kingston Ale House books all work pretty well as standalones–ironically, the only one in the series that I have yet to read is Jeremy’s sister’s book ( Three Simple Words), but you’d better believe I’ll remedy that as soon as I can. Since this is the last in the series, all of the other couples make appearances here; if you haven’t read their books yet, no worries, but I can’t guarantee you won’t want to read them before you get to the last page.

But that’s what TBR lists are for, right? 😉

Rating: 4 stars / B+

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

DON’T MISS THE OTHER BOOKS IN THE KINGSTON ALE HOUSE SERIES!
three-simple-words-cover
Synopsis:
She’s holding out for a happy ever after.
Annie
I know where to find my happily ever after—between the pages of a romance novel. It’s why I sell books, why I blog about them, and why I’ll never get disappointed by love.So what if my brother’s best friend from high school is now a bestselling author? Or that he just blew back into town on a Harley, filling out a pair of jeans like he never did before? Or that he’s agreed to do a signing at my bookstore on such short notice? Because despite all his adoring female fans, I kind of hated his book.
Wes
The last time I saw Annie Denning, she was a senior in high school, three years older than me and way out of my league.
Now I’m her last-minute date to a wedding, and what started as a night of pure fun has turned into something more real than either of us anticipated.Annie is my muse. When I’m with her, my writer’s block fades away, and the words finally flow.The only problem? She wants the fairy tale—her very own happily ever after—and anyone who’s read my book knows the truth. I just don’t believe they exist.

 

Six Month Rule New Cover

Synopsis:

She created the game, but the rules are about to change.

The second I met Will Evans in his three-piece suit with that hot as hell British accent, I wanted him.

That is…until he insulted my shoes and stole my corner office.

Now I have to work side-by-side with the surly British arsehole who just set my career back six months.

It’s fine. That accent won’t get to me, no matter how sexy it sounds when he asks permission to do things professionals shouldn’t do. On the couch. In the corner office I still wish was mine.

Maybe we can’t keep our hands off each other, but I’m sure as hell not falling for a guy who lives an ocean away. Because in six months, he’s leaving for good.

I don’t do broken hearts, but you know what they say…

There’s a first time for everything.

Each book in the Kingston Ale House series is a standalone, full-length story that can be enjoyed out of order.

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the-one-that-got-away-1-cover

 

Synopsis:

How far will one man go for the woman he’s loved since high school?

Jamie Kingston has been Brynn Chandler’s best friend since middle school. Only once was their friendship tested—when Brynn gave Jamie a single kiss. Since then, they’ve had an unspoken agreement never to cross that line again, and she’s ready to let go of the past and move on.

But Jamie has loved Brynn for as long as he can remember, and now that he’s ready to tell her, she has her sights set on someone else. Knowing this is his last chance, he asks Brynn to go on a two-week road trip. But their time alone brings old hurts to the surface, and Brynn has to decide if the one that got away lies at the end of the journey or if he’s been by her side all along.

BUY:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/29Z6agE
Paperback: http://amzn.to/2af7iOJ
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2asrYz7
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/29SpV7N
B&N: http://bit.ly/1SSq2xv
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1QeR2VO
iBooks: http://apple.co/1SdYliQ

ABOUT AJ PINE:

aj-pine

AJ Pine writes stories to break readers’ hearts, but don’t worry—she’ll mend them with a happily ever after. As an English teacher and a librarian, AJ has always surrounded herself with books. All her favorites have one big commonality–romance. Naturally, her books have the same. When she’s not writing, she’s of course reading. Then there’s online shopping (everything from groceries to shoes) and, of course, a tiny bit of TV where she nourishes her undying love of vampires and superheroes. And in the midst of all of this, you’ll also find her hanging with her family in the Chicago burbs.

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New Release Review! SIX MONTH RULE by A.J. Pine (Kingston Ale House #2)

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Six Month Rule
by A.J. Pine
Kingston Ale House #2
Publication Date: July 18, 2016
Genres: Adult, Entangled, Select Contemporary, RomanceSynopsis: She created the game, but the rules are about to change.
Taurus: Hold fast to your single-minded nature today—no matter how long her legs or how lush her red lips.
Gemini: You were a shining star last night, but reality can be a real—well, you get the picture. Just remember: Tall, dark, and British equals no corner office for you.

Will Evans never wanted a reason to stay.

Holly Chandler wants nothing more than for him to go.

But neither one is prepared for what can happen in six months. Because it doesn’t matter what you want when what you need walks out the door.

Holly’s been busting her butt to make partner at Trousseau and there’s no way she’s going to let some stuck-up British arsehole get in her way—no matter how drop-dead gorgeous he is. But that doesn’t mean she can’t have a little fun in the process. She has a six-month rule: date just long enough for the honeymoon phase to wear off, then walk away before anyone gets hurt. If they both know the rules up front, walking away will be a piece of cake. Or maybe not…

*SIX MONTH RULE is a stand alone book in a connected series.

Six Month Rule Teaser 4

Excerpt:

“May I…?” he asked, his voice hoarse and expectant as he raised a palm toward one of her breasts.

She half smiled while biting her lip, then nodded, and Will brought his hand to her skin. As he made contact, they each drew in a sharp breath.

“God, Holly…”

“Say it again,” she whispered, her hands clasping around his neck.

“God, Holly?” he asked, teasing, because he knew what she meant, but he wanted her to say it one more time.

She shook her head, grinning, and gently tugged his head toward hers. “I want you to ask permission in that sexy accent of yours.”

He brought his lips to hers, not yet a kiss, but close enough to feel her breath on his skin. One hand was still on her breast, and the other had found its way to her back. Will

was barely hanging on, but he wanted to do this right, put someone else’s needs first, give her what she wanted.

So he asked, “May I do this?”

He kissed her, featherlight, and she spoke softly against him.

“Yes.”

His lips moved to her jaw and her neck, and all the while he spoke sweetly against her.

“And this? May I kiss you here?”

He felt her swallow as he peppered her skin with tiny kisses, and again he heard her voice, faint yet insistent.

“Yes.”

Her breast was still cupped in his hand, and he lightly pinched the hard peak while asking, “What about this, Holly? May I do this?”

She gasped and rocked her hips against him, and he took that as a yes. God, it had been so long since he’d been with anyone like this, and the way she responded to him

was enough to drive him mad. He knew this was dangerous ground, that he wasn’t just attracted to Holly physically. He should be logical here, weigh the pros and cons, but her hands had left his neck and found the button of his jeans, and that was it. Will finally put his overactive brain to rest. It was all instinct from here, because Holly Chandler responded to his impulses, and he to hers.

“May I have the pleasure, Mr. Evans?” She undid the button. “Or can I call you Billy now?”

Will scooped her into his arms and dropped her over the side of the sofa so she now lay on her back. Holly yelped with laughter as he stepped around to meet her, sitting on

the edge of a cushion.

“No to Billy,” he said. Then, “You first,” returning the favor, unbuttoning and unzipping her jeans. “If I may.”

Six Month Rule Teaser 3

Review:

A feel-good romance!

Will Evans is my new British book boyfriend–really, I think everyone deserves a Will. I loved all his adorable British-isms, and how he took such good care of Holly (bought her ice cream! and Nyquil! almost removed his fingerprints carrying hot deep dish pizza!) and was so determined to be a good dad to Sophie–even though that’s what almost made him lose it all in the end.

And Holly–as workaholic as Will, with her compulsive horoscope reading, and her darn “six month rule” about relationships–oh my gosh, did that girl ever need to get out of her own way to find happiness!–it was impossible not to love her anyway, in spite of the fact that she was the #1 person making herself miserable.

Fortunately, Six Month Rule is a romance, so they both got their act together in the end and reached for their HEA. Because, day-um. Did these two need to have an HEA 🙂 They were adorable, and steamy, and just so right together–so much fun to read. Swoon.

Six Month Rule is the second in the series, but it would work fine as a standalone, if needed. If you have read The One That Got Away , though, you’ll love seeing Holly’s sister Brynn again, and Jamie (talk about two people who get in the way of their own happiness–at least it didn’t take Holly and Will ten years…thank goodness. That might have killed me.)

Here’s hoping the Kingston Ale House series has a few more books in it–because I for one will read them all.

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

Six Month Rule Cover

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B&N:http://bit.ly/29NdJoL
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DON’T MISS THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY, THE FIRST BOOK IN THE KINGSTON ALE HOUSE SERIES!

The One That Got Away Cover

Synopsis:How far will one man go for the woman he’s loved since high school?

Jamie Kingston has been Brynn Chandler’s best friend since middle school. Only once was their friendship tested—when Brynn gave Jamie a single kiss. Since then, they’ve had an unspoken agreement never to cross that line again, and she’s ready to let go of the past and move on.

But Jamie has loved Brynn for as long as he can remember, and now that he’s ready to tell her, she has her sights set on someone else. Knowing this is his last chance, he asks Brynn to go on a two-week road trip. But their time alone brings old hurts to the surface, and Brynn has to decide if the one that got away lies at the end of the journey or if he’s been by her side all along.

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BUY:
Amazon:http://amzn.to/29Z6agE
Paperback:http://amzn.to/2af7iOJ
Amazon UK:http://amzn.to/2asrYz7
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/29SpV7N
B&N:http://bit.ly/1SSq2xv
Kobo:http://bit.ly/1QeR2VO
iBooks:http://apple.co/1SdYliQ

ABOUT A.J. PINE:
AJ Pine

AJ Pine writes stories to break readers’ hearts, but don’t worry—she’ll mend them with a happily ever after. As an English teacher and a librarian, AJ has always surrounded herself with books. All her favorites have one big commonality–romance. Naturally, her books have the same. When she’s not writing, she’s of course reading. Then there’s online shopping (everything from groceries to shoes) and, of course, a tiny bit of TV where she nourishes her undying love of vampires and superheroes.

And in the midst of all of this, you’ll also find her hanging with her family in the Chicago burbs.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instragram | Newsletter | Amazon Author Profile

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Author Interview, New Release Review, and Giveaway! THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY by AJ Pine (Kingston Ale House #1)

The One That Got Away Tour Banner

 

Thanks so much for agreeing to be with us today!

Happy to be here!

 

What 5 things should readers know about you?

  • I’m a high school librarian and read as much YA as I do adult romance.
  • All of my books prior to The One That Got Away are New Adult. This is my foray into adult contemporary romance.
  • Being published does not change how I act when I meet my favorite authors. I’m still an awkward fangirl.
  • I love Benedict Cumberbatch.
  • I still ship Rory and Jess.

LOL—doesn’t everyone? (Ship Rory and Jess ;))

 

 

Tell us all about your main characters—who are they? What makes them tick? Most importantly, what one thing would they need to have with them if stranded on a desert isle? 😉

My hero, Jamie, is a beer brewer and a die-hard White Sox fan. What makes him tick is a good brew, a winning game, and the fact that he’s been secretly in love with his best friend for ten years.

 

My heroine, Brynn (the afore mentioned best friend) loves a good pair of knee-high suede boots and the band The Monkees. And she maybe, possibly, has buried some feelings for ten years as well. For reasons.

 

As for the desert isle, what would they need other than each other? Because aww, it would be sweet if that was their answer, but NO. They have not earned that yet. 🙂 So, let’s see, Jamie would need some place he could get a cold beer. Desert islands have that, right? And Brynn would need her glasses because she’s legally blind without them, and that sea air would kill her contacts without any solution.

LOL—I agree; they need to earn it! But on the plus side, I’m pretty sure desert islands can absolutely have somewhere for Jamie to get a beer—maybe he can even figure out how to brew his own with coconuts, or something? You know, if they’re there long enough 😉

 

Where did the inspiration for this book come from?

I’ve always wanted to write a book that emulated what I love in my favorite romcom movies. So I guess you could say TOTGA is a nod to a couple of those favorites— a little When Harry Met Sally with  a sprinkling of 13 Going on 30.

Two thumbs up on your choices for movie inspiration! And somehow I knew that WHMS was an inspiration…I wonder how… 🙂

 

How long have you been writing, and what (or who) inspired you to start?

I’ve been writing seriously for just under five years. Reading is my biggest inspiration. Every time I finished a book that gave me a good book hangover, I’d think, “Wow. I wish I could do that.” One time I finally decided to stop wishing and start trying.

Sounds like a great plan! Hmmm…

 

What do you like best about being a writer? What is the most challenging part?

Drafting a new story is my absolute favorite part of writing. Editing is my biggest challenge mainly because I’m such a linear writer. So to hack it up and move things around and add new things? It kind of hurts my brain. But I get through it.

Ugh, editing. I hear you!

 

What are you working on right now? What can readers look for from you in the next year?

Right now I’m working on galley proofs for book two in the series, Six Month Rule, which releases in July (not sure of the exact date yet). This is a four book series, so if all goes according to plan, you’ll see a new Kingston Ale House book release every three months starting on April 18, 2016!

Woot! Yes! Can’t wait 🙂

 

What authors and/or books have inspired you?
My writing partners inspire me big time because I admire their work and want to continue to grow as I see them grow as writers. My favorite romance authors inspire me. When I read Cora Carmack’s Losing It, I knew I wanted to write New Adult. When I read the first trilogy in Jill Shalvis’s Lucky Harbor series, I knew that someday my next venture would be adult contemporary. Now here I am with the first in a four-book series. The writers I love inspire me because they remind me what I love about romance and to always write the book I would want to read.

Awesome answer!

 

What are you currently reading? What are your thoughts about it so far?

I’m reading The Love That Split the World (a YA book by Emily Henry) and on Audible I’m listening to The Last Boyfriend (Nora Roberts). Both are very different and also excellent. I’m loving each one.

Great!

 

If you had to “sell” your book in a single Tweet, what would you say?

Two best friends.  A cross-country road trip. 10 years of buried feelings. What could go wrong? Find out in @AJ_Pine’s #TheOneThatGotAway

Love it! Thanks so much, AJ!

 

ABOUT AJ PINE:
A.J. Pine

AJ Pine writes stories to break readers’ hearts, but don’t worry—she’ll mend them with a happily ever after. As an English teacher and a librarian, AJ has always surrounded herself with books. All her favorites have one big commonality–romance. Naturally, her books have the same. When she’s not writing, she’s of course reading. Then there’s online shopping (everything from groceries to shoes) and, of course, a tiny bit of TV where she nourishes her undying love of vampires and superheroes. And in the midst of all of this, you’ll also find her hanging with her family in the Chicago burbs.
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads | Newsletter | Amazon Author Page

 

 

The One That Got Away Cover

The One That Got Away
by AJ Pine
The Kingston Ale House, #1
Publication Date: April 18, 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Entangled Select Contemporary

 

Synopsis:

How far will one man go for the woman he’s loved since high school?

Jamie Kingston has been Brynn Chandler’s best friend since middle school. Only once was their friendship tested—when Brynn gave Jamie a single kiss. Since then, they’ve had an unspoken agreement never to cross that line again, and she’s ready to let go of the past and move on.

But Jamie has loved Brynn for as long as he can remember, and now that he’s ready to tell her, she has her sights set on someone else. Knowing this is his last chance, he asks Brynn to go on a two-week road trip. But their time alone brings old hurts to the surface, and Brynn has to decide if the one that got away lies at the end of the journey or if he’s been by her side all along.

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Review:

I loved Brynn and Jamie–so, so cute together. And their friends/relatives too–so much fun there, and I’m totally looking forward to the rest of the series to get more of Annie and Holly and Jeremy. There’s a lot of lighthearted cuteness, superfun pop culture references, and a healthy dose really funny dialogue and scenes. Good times all around!

But…

Brynn and Jamie drove me absolutely crazy too. For two people who have been best friends since middle school, they manage to NOT tell each other some really important stuff for way too much of the book and make too many decisions that had me screeching WHAT???? in my head. Seriously. Talk about misunderstanding and non-communication–this book has both in spades. There were so many times that I just wanted to thunk one or both of their heads in frustration. But then something cute or funny or sweet would happen and they’d get a temporary reprieve, and I’d keep reading, a smile on my face.

Plus, the ending is adorable. And I really do love them together. Did I mention how much I love the secondary characters?

So–overall this was an entertaining but frequently frustrating read, the first in a series that I am very much looking forward to reading more of.

Rating: 3 1/2 stars / B+

I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

Teaser_What Could Go Wrong

 

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New Release and Giveaway! ’80s MIX TAPE (A Romance Rewind anthology)

Ah, the ’80s. They just don’t make music like that anymore! (Or hairstyles, either…)


’80s Mix Tape
A.J. Pine, Autumn Jones Lake, Bobbi Ruggiero, Gwen Hayes, Jenny Holiday, Karen Booth, Rachel Cowell
(Romance Rewind #2)
Publication date: February 9th 2016
Genres: New Adult, Romance

Save a Prayer by Karen Booth

Angie Dawson never wants to see Graham Whiting again, a complete impossibility living in Stourbridge,England, the town outside London where she and Graham grew up. His band, Banks Forest, is so hot in the UK they might as well be on fire. She can’t turn on the blooming radio or watch telly or look at a magazine without being confronted by the ’80s Fab Four, fronted by the sexy bloke she’d once called her boyfriend. Every girl in England wants him. Bloody bastard.

Desperate to escape the 24-7 Banks Forest overload, Angie takes a twoweek job working as a photographer at the Music Revolution festival in the US. Finally, she can set her mind on something other than Graham and what it was like before he started being such a wanker. Maybe she can sort out what to do with her life. If she’s lucky, she’ll meet a cracking guy who doesn’t think he’s God’s gift to women. The instant she steps off the plane, she learns how daft her plan was. Banks Forest mania practically followed her across the Atlantic. Her new job puts her in Graham’s sights and he’s dead-set on winning her back. He knows the perfect things to say, the right way to kiss her and make everything brilliant again. She wants him, she wants him to be the guy he says he can be, but he’s about to go on the road for a year. How does a reunion with her ex end up being anything more than a one-night stand?

 

Need You Tonight by Gwen Hayes

Jacob Stone is on the run for a crime he didn’t commit, but when he’s stranded with the only woman he’s ever loved by chance, the girl he abandoned to protect two years ago, he can’t deny the need to possess her one last time. Mind, body, and soul.

Typical good girl Becky McDonald has loved bad boy Jacob since they were kids, but even as she gives in to the passion only he can ignite in her, she hides the truth. The one secret that would bring him back is the lie she can never reveal.

One night of passion. One night of need. That’s all they can have, but it will never be enough.

 

Kickstart My Heart by Autumn Jones Lake

Russell“Chaser” Adams knows he’s destined to take over his father’s outlaw motorcycle club one day. With Chaser’s heavy metal band close to making it big, his father encourages him to pursue his music for now. Chaser straddles his Harley and heads across the country to the Sunset Strip.

Raised in a strict family with old-world traditions and their own secrets, Mallory Delov longs for glitter and glamor instead of blood and deceit. With her father serving time, it’s the perfect time to escape his domineering grasp and pursue her lifelong dream of becoming an actress.

After nailing her first audition, Mallory is offered the part of a playful vixen who torments the lead singer of the up and coming metal band, Kickstart. Her job description calls for lots of hair tossing and ass wiggling. Not quite the career she had in mind.
She didn’t plan to fall in love either. Unlike any man she’s ever known, she can’t help being drawn to the guitar player, Chaser. He’s sweet, yet dangerous. An irresistible mixture to Mallory.

On the surface they seem like complete opposites.

Little do either of them know how much they have in common.

 

867-5309 by Jenny Holiday

Jenny Fields is a crusader. The editor of her college newspaper, she never met a cause she couldn’t get behind. So when the administration announces it’s tearing down the historic art building, she’s on the case.All she needs to do is get Matthew Townsend, the art department’s most talented student, on board. If she could just get the moody genius to answer his phone…

 

Drummer Girl by A.J. Pine

Sam Walsh is done—done with college, done with guys, done with the whole scene. After graduation tomorrow, she’ll head home, ready to start her job as an elementary school music teacher in the fall. But her roommate coaxes her out for what she promises will be an epic last night, a night that ends up changing everything.

London Calling is the up-and-coming band playing at the local bar, and Sam can’t take her eyes off the sexy drummer. When he dedicates the drummer’s choice song to her, she knows the evening might be more epic than she’d imagined. Then one kiss turns her world upside down, making her question everything she thought she wanted out of her last night at school.

Ben McCarthy is the guy behind the drums, the would-have-been 306 valedictorian who dropped out three years ago to follow his dream. Tomorrow he and the band leave for London, but for one unforgettable night, it’s just Sam, the music, and him. Can a girl with her feet planted firmly on the ground fall for the boy who reaches for the stars when the only result is a broken heart?

 

Young Teacher by Bobbi Ruggiero

Control freak Julia Powers hates surprises. With the skills of a ninja, she keeps her ad business and personal life in perfect order. That leaves zero time for fun, let alone men. But there’s nothing wrong with having a little crush on the guy she sees at lunchtime, is there? Sure, he’s a lot younger, but it’s only a crush. It’s not like she’s going to date him or anything.

Matthew Gordon wants nothing more than for his band Joyride to go national. While he waits for his big break, he spends his days working in a sandwich shop—a job he loathes—and teaching guitar on the side—a job he loves. His days get a bit more interesting when a mysterious woman comes in for lunch and hands him a list of her favorite songs. So imagine his surprise when she shows up at his door for guitar lessons.

Unfortunately, Julia can’t play guitar to save her life, and her frustration threatens to ruin any chance of her finding happiness—with herself, or in love. Will he ever be able to teach her that she’s perfect just as she is?

 

Just Like Heaven by Rachel Cowell

As a premed student, college junior Sarah Lattimore’s life is a carefully calibrated system of studying, studying, MCAT prep courses, and more studying. She didn’t have time for a social life in high school, and she definitely doesn’t have time for one now. But when she walks into the first day of anatomy lab and sees her gorgeous TA, Sarah’s brilliant mind is suddenly racing in new directions.

Grad student Josh Chapman’s mom died of ovarian cancer when he was a teenager, and his grief and rage at the experience turned his future aspirations toward cancer research. But the unbelievably cute, nerdy, and possibly insane Sarah Lattimore is in his section, and she’s… distracting. But when admiring from afar turns to up close and personal, both their academic lives begin to fall apart. Sarah cares too much about her grades to stay with Josh and she breaks things off.

But when she makes a mistake in class that results in Josh facing expulsion, will this mean the end of his dreams? Or will Sarah realize in time that being with Josh was the smartest choice she’d ever made?

Goodreads / Amazon

Sneak a Peek at a couple of books from this anthology:

Excerpt from Drummer Girl by A.J. Pine

“Well,” Claire started, after what she probably thought was the requisite amount of silence when your roommate got all moody over her father’s memory. “I know how to get your mind off worrying about the big day tomorrow.”

I sprang up and got back to work on my closet, the mention of tomorrow bringing me back to today.

“Not happening,” I said, knowing where this conversation was going. “I’m giving a speech at ten o’clock in the morning.”

Claire joined me at my closet, pulling a white tank top off a hanger.

“Here. Wear this under your overalls. It’ll be hot.”

I shook my head.

“I don’t need to be hot because I’m not going out tonight.”

She pulled my hair out of the French braids I’d put in after I showered this morning.

“Hey! Those were supposed to stay in until tomorrow.”

Claire crossed her arms and looked me over, then fluffed out my hair so it lay evenly around my head.

“But now you’ll have that perfect crimped look for tonight!”

She pushed me in front of the mirrored door, and I couldn’t help but smile. I could never get my stick-straight hair to hold any sort of curl unless I left it in braids for hours. And now my light brown locks fell in perfect waves at my shoulders.

The only problem was this look was supposed to be for graduation.

Pleeease,” Claire pleaded, dragging out the word with an intentional whine. “I have the most epic night planned. You won’t regret it.”

I rolled my eyes and turned back to face her. “You planned an epic evening? You can’t even plan what you’re eating for dinner.”

She laughed and grabbed my arm.

“I ordered Domino’s.” She looked at her watch. “It’ll be here in seventeen minutes.”

She pushed me out my bedroom door and into the room that bisected our apartment, the kitchen/living space combo. On top of our small, round butcher block table sat paper plates, napkins, two plastic cups, and a pitcher of what I knew was my roommate’s famous Long Island iced tea.

When I spun to make a dramatic march back to my room, Claire was on her knees, hands clasped together.

“Seriously?” I asked.

She nodded. “One, last, epic night. I’ll have you home by midnight with enough time to finish packing, get your beauty rest, and be fresh for your speech in the morning.”

I backed toward the table and stared at the empty cups and the pitcher. My eyes volleyed between Claire’s first ever planned meal, regardless that all it took was a phone call and a trip to the corner store, and the girl herself. I was the planner, the one who always wanted to know what came next. So it was saying a lot that she did this for me.

“You know I know you’re full of shit about the whole midnight thing, right?”

I filled one of the cups, and Claire stood, grinning.

“I am completely aware of my full-of-shit-ness,” she said, stepping toward my outstretched hand and grabbing the full cup that was in it.

I filled the second cup, then held it in the air as if ready to toast. Fine. I could change my clothes. I already had an outfit in mind. And it’s not like I couldn’t practice my speech a few more times later tonight. As for packing, I’d put my sewing kit and emergency toiletries into a separate bag next to my suitcase. The few things left in my closet would fit with no problem.

I’d spent enough time preparing to be prepared. Maybe one night of letting go would be good for me.

“You really planned something special?” I asked.

She grinned. “I mean, I use the term plan loosely, but yes. I ordered dinner. I made the drinks. And I know exactly where we’re going and that you’re going to have a blast when we get there.”

Well, how did a girl argue with a plan? I clinked my cup against hers. “To epic last nights, I guess.”

Claire squealed. “To epic last nights!”

And new beginnings, I thought, and I suddenly couldn’t wait for tomorrow.

Page Break

 

Excerpt from Need You Tonight by Gwen Hayes

Jacob’s eyes never rest. He glances at me briefly before scanning the swarm of disgruntled travelers around us. The logical side of my brain says that he is just being careful. People on the run have to be hypersensitive to their surroundings. The illogical poster-girl-of-a-train-wreck side thinks he just wants to get away from me as soon as possible and is looking for a break in the crowds.

“Where were you going?” he asks. Probably to be polite.

“Florida. You?” Stupid girl. “Never mind. That was dumb. You can’t tell me where you are going or where you’ve been or probably even what you had for breakfast yesterday.”

“It doesn’t really matter where I was going,” he says, glossing over my sarcasm like he always does. “Nobody’s getting out of Detroit alive tonight.” He looks at his watch. “I guess I should try to book a room.”

I follow his wrist back down to his side with my gaze. God, nothing has changed. Even his wrists turn me on. Focus, Becky. “Good luck with that. Hotel rooms are going to be scarce.”

“I suppose you already have one.”

I shrug. “You know me.”

Awkward silence.

“You look good, Becky.”

Though they are kind, the words bite into my tender heart with razor sharp teeth. They are so tame compared to the last time he told me how I looked. When he said he couldn’t get enough of my hot little body. That I made him so hard every time he looked at me. My face was forever etched in his mind.

Now I look “good.”

I smile through the jagged pain because that is what you do when it hurts to breathe. “Thanks. I don’t suppose we could grab a cup of coffee, could we?” I don’t know why I said that. Why did I just say that?

“I don’t know if that’s a good idea. It’s risky.”

Two years. I have missed him every day for two years. “We’re random strangers in a crowded airport today. Is it really so dangerous?”

He rubs his chin, scratching at the light dusting of stubble. “You’re not a random stranger, Becks.”

I shrug. “Nobody here knows that.” What if he says yes? What would it be like to forget, just for one hour, all the things that haunt me? Just take a step out of time. “It’s coffee, not a dark alley. I’ll help you make calls to hotels first.”

I don’t wait for an answer; I just grab his hand and pull. He’ll follow. He’ll roll his eyes, act a little miffed, and go along with me just like he always used to. Because he didn’t say no. He said he didn’t know if it was a good idea. Semantics are everything with a guy like Jacob Stone.

Twenty minutes later, after fruitless phone calls for a room, Jacob takes a long pull from his coffee and sits back in his chair, defeated. “How did you score a room? Wait, don’t tell me. You reserved it days ago, didn’t you?”

“The storm isn’t a surprise. They’ve been tracking it for a while.”

Jacob looks out the windows across the terminal. “It looks like a hurricane out there. It’s getting dark, too.”

The airport is stuffy and hot, with the temperature rising as the untraveling passengers’ moods get hotter. “I know you’ll say no, but you are welcome to crash in my room. It’s better than the floor at the gate.”

“That’s a bad idea.” Jake shuts down, just like he always did. That means no.

Now is make-or-break for what’s left of my pride. The interlude was pleasant, in its own way, but I am a realist now. A step out of time can’t take me a mile. I’ve learned the hard way that real life encroaches too soon. He’s broken my heart for the last time. I won’t beg again. This time, I’ll be the one to walk away.

“Suit yourself.” I push away from the table, slinging my carryon over my shoulder. “I’ll leave a key for you at the desk, Mr. McDonald, in case you should change your mind.” I walk just past the table and stop without turning around. “Take care of yourself.”

I miss you.

And that is that.

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Release Day Blast and Giveaway: If Only by A.J. Pine

An English major heroine? Bring it on!

9781622664351_500

March may be almost over but that doesn’t mean the fun is over at Embrace.  We are excited to be announcing the release of Amy Pine’s If Only which readers are already raving about!  Plus, you can pick up If Only on sale for just $.99 right now.

About If Only:

 

Sometimes it takes crossing an ocean to figure out where you belong.

It’s been two years since twenty-year-old Jordan had a boyfriend—which means it’s been forever since she, well, you know. But now she’s off to spend her junior year in Aberdeen, Scotland, the perfect place to stop waiting for Mr. Right and just enjoy Mr. Right Now.

Sexy, sweet (and possible player) Griffin may be her perfect, no-strings-attached match. He’s fun, gorgeous, and makes her laugh. So why can’t she stop thinking about Noah who, minutes after being trapped together outside the train’s loo, kisses Jordan like she’s never been kissed before? Never mind his impossible blue eyes, his weathered, annotated copy of The Great Gatsby (total English-major porn)…oh, and his girlfriend.

Jordan knows everything this year has an expiration date. Aberdeen is supposed to be about fun rather than waiting for life to happen. But E. M. Forster, Shakespeare, and mistletoe on Valentine’s Day make her reconsider what love is and how far she’s willing to go for the right guy.

Find If Only Online:

Amazon

B&N

iTunes

Goodreads

 

Find A.J. Online:

 

Website

Twitter

Facebook

Giveaway

If Only Swag Pack -An “I love you from here to Scotland” print, Ahava pendent, A pack each of Much Ado about Nothing and A Room With a View confetti, Much Ado about Nothing travel mug and A Room With a View Blu-ray (a $25 Amazon gift card will be substituted if winner is outside the US)

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