New Release Review and Giveaway! FAMOUS IN A SMALL TOWN by Kristina Knight (Slippery Rock #1)

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Famous in a Small Town
(Slippery Rock #1)
Kristina Knight
Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 306 pages
May 1st 2017 by Harlequin Superromance

Lifestyles of the small-town famous

Forced to leave Nashville after a scandal, Savannah Walters has come home to Slippery Rock, Missouri, with a bruised ego and her singing career in jeopardy. As if that isn’t humiliating enough, on her way into town she’s rescued by her swoon-worthy childhood crush, Collin Tyler.

His hands are full running the family orchard and dealing with his delinquent teen sister, so Collin doesn’t need to get involved with someone as fiery and unpredictable as Savannah. But the intense attraction between them can’t be denied. And when disaster strikes, they’ll both be surprised by who’s still standing when the dust settles.

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Review:

Such a good read!

It takes a while to figure out what exactly Savannah’s deal is–which is a bit frustrating at first, but once we have the whole story? It finally makes sense, and from that point on–all the feels. Seriously, there were tears. More than once. Between Savannah and her mom, Savannah and Collin, and Collin and his little sister Amanda, the relationships in this book just slay me. I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen next for the people of Slippery Rock–Levi, Savannah’s brother; Mara, Collin’s absent sister; James, the deputy sheriff; and Adam, their longtime friend who isn’t exactly left in a good spot at the end of this book…gah! How soon until book 2 comes out?

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

About the Author

Once upon a time, Kristina Knight spent her days running from car crash to fire to meetings with local police–no, she wasn’t a troublemaker, she was a journalist. Her career took her all over the United States, writing about everything from a serial killer’s capture to the National Finals Rodeo. Along the way, she found her very own Knight in Shining Cowboy Boots and an abiding love for romance novels. And just like the characters from her favorite books, she’s living her own happily ever after.

Kristina writes sassy contemporary romance novels; her books have appeared on Kindle Best Seller Lists. She loves hearing from readers, so drop her a line!

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Other Harlequin Superromance Books by the Author

And coming July 2017, also in the Slippery Rock series…

Tour Giveaway

 1 winner will receive a Prize Pack with a signed copy of FIRST LOVE AGAIN, swag and other fun items
– Prize pack for US residents only, if international winner is pulled then they will receive a $25 gift card instead
 Ends May 23rd

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Tour Schedule

May 13th: Launch
May 14th:
Becky on Books
The Silver Dagger Scriptorium
Falling Leaves
May 15th:
It’s All About the Romance
Sylv.net
Christian Suspense Author Mary Alford
May 16th:
Brooke Blogs
underneath the covers
Hearts & Scribbles
May 17th:
Author Kimber Li
Booklove
Nicole’s Book Musings
May 18th:
Granny Loves to Read
Deal Sharing Aunt
Thoughts of a Blonde
May 19th: Grand Finale

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Release Day Review! HIS RUNAWAY CAMPFIRE PRINCESS (Camp Firefly Falls #8)

His Runaway Campfire Princess
by Gwen Hayes

 

A Princess on the run…

Just once, Princess Merriam would like to make her own choices, but independence is in short supply when your father, the king, is of the royal opinion that princesses are for looking pretty and being obedient. When she overhears him talking to her broody, sexy, and oh-so-aloof bodyguard about her future wedding, a surprise to her as she’s not currently engaged to anyone, she plots her first rebellion: slip past her protection detail in NYC and board a tourist bus bound for Camp Firefly Falls where she plans to spend the week incognito as a normal twenty-something looking for love during Singles’ Week.

A Duke in pursuit…

Harmon Maxwell , Duke of Carlisle and Commander of the Royal Palace Guard has no patience for spoiled little rich girls who think security is a game. The tempting princess has tormented his dreams for years, but he’s a man of honor and duty, and he intends to bring the reckless beauty to heel until a real threat to her safety means a week at camp might be the safest place for her. It’s his duty to keep her in close protection, and that means she only gets one suitor during Singles’ Week: him.

 

Review:

A quick, fun and sexy read!

His Runaway Campfire Princess may be just a novella, but it still packs quite a punch. Merriam and Harmon are one heck of a couple–so much angsty we-can’t-be-together drama…and then before the camp week is half over, so much delicious at-least-we-have-this-week sexy times 😉

Merriam and Harmon’s book is the eighth in the series, but it worked just fine as a standalone. Be warned, though–you probably won’t want their story to be your only visit to Camp Firefly Falls!

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

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New Release Review and Giveaway! BETTING THE BAD BOY by Stefanie London (Behind the Bar #3)

He’s an expert at breaking the rules…

BETTING THE BAD BOY
Behind the Bar #3
Stefanie London
Releasing May 8th, 2017
Entangled Lovestruck

Self-confessed perfectionist Paige Thomas isn’t used to failing. But when a critical error in romantic judgment sends all her big city career dreams crashing down, she scrambles to find a job—any job—to make ends meet.

 Noah Reid may as well have “trust issues” tattooed on his forehead. Being raised in the foster system didn’t give him a positive outlook on relationships, but now he’s looking after his best friend’s bar for one month, and he can’t do it
alone.

Things get steamy when Noah hires Paige, but she’s determined not to repeat her mistakes and she bets Noah that she can keep her hands to herself while they’re working together. Too bad for her, Noah is an expert at breaking the
rules…    

She held the blindfold while trying to ignore the flutter of excitement in her stomach. Her fingers toyed with the elasticated band meant to hold the mask in place.

“Both partners are going to get a turn at being blindfolded,” Libby said from the front of the room. “Between yourselves, pick who’s going to go first.”

Noah looked down at her, a smirk tugging at the corner of his lips. He ran a hand along his jaw, catching the reddish-gold bristles of his burgeoning beard. For a moment, Paige was totally captured with the idea of how the bristles might feel on her skin. Would they be smooth or rough? Would she shriek if he brushed them along her inner thigh?

“What do you say, new girl?” He cocked his head. “Would you rather do the blindfolding or be blindfolded?”

At that point she would have been happy to go all in— blindfolded, tied up, and held down.

Holy crap, would you listen to yourself? This is a work function, not a goddamn re-creation of Fifty Shades.

“Blindfolded,” she squeaked, thrusting the mask into his hands and spinning so quickly that she almost lost her footing.

“You know, I’ve never done this before.” His hand steadied her, the reassuring warmth of his touch seeping into her skin. Her bones felt like jelly.

“Blindfolded someone?” she asked, cringing at how shaky her voice sounded.

“Ah, no. I meant the taste test.” He chuckled as he slipped the mask over her eyes.

Heat rushed up to Paige’s cheeks. Of course he meant the taste test. What an idiot she was. Just because her brain was earning an R-rating tonight didn’t mean his was, too. She fought back a tremor as he brushed some loose hairs from her neck so he could adjust the strap on the mask.

Everything went dark, and Paige gripped the edge of the table for support.

Warm breath whispered over her ear, and she could tell he’d leaned in a little closer. The scent of coffee and faded cologne tempted her to turn her head toward the source.

“I’ve definitely blindfolded someone before, but it wasn’t for a taste test.”
Her breath hitched, and she was grateful that she’d had the presence of mind to hold on to something.

“Oh.”

He chuckled. “Yeah, that’s what she said.”

Holy. Freaking. Shit.

So cute!

I loved both Noah and Paige, and the bet motif was abso-freaking adorable. I can’t imagine why I haven’t read the other two books in this series–yes, it worked just fine as a standalone, but still–but you’d better believe I’m going to soon. I’m really going to enjoy watching Noah be all smug in his non-commitment-dom, knowing exactly what is coming in his future 🙂

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.


Stefanie 
London is the USA Today bestselling author of over ten contemporary romances with humour, heat and heart. Growing up, Stefanie came from a family of women who loved to read. Thus, it was no surprise Stefanie was the sort of student who would read her English books before the semester started. After sneaking several literature subjects into her ‘very practical’ Business degree, she got a job in Communications. When writing emails and newsletters didn’t fulfil her creative urges, she turned to fiction and was finally able to write the stories that kept her mind busy at night.

Originally from Australia, she now lives in Toronto with her very own hero and is currently in the process of doing her best to travel the world. She frequently indulges in her passions for good coffee, lipstick, romance novels and zombie movies.

 

New Release Review and Giveaway! CASK STRENGTH by Layla Reyne (Irish & Whiskey #2)

Title: CASK STRENGTH
Author: Layla Reyne
Release Date: May 1, 2017
Publisher: Carina Press
Series: Agents Irish & Whiskey
Genres: M/M Romantic Suspense
Word Count: 61,000
Format: Digital
ISBN: 9781488024399

 

Synopsis:

The heart’s a resilient beast…

Professionally, the FBI team of Aidan “Irish” Talley and Jameson “Whiskey” Walker is as good as it gets, closing cases faster than any team at the Bureau. Personally, it’s a different story. Aidan’s feelings for Jamie scare the hell out of him: he won’t risk losing another love no matter how heart-tripping the intimacy between them. And loss is a grim reality with the terrorist Renaud still on their trail, leaving a pile of bodies in his wake.

Going undercover on a new case gets them out of town and off the killer’s radar. They’re assigned to investigate an identity theft ring involving a college basketball team in Jamie’s home state, where Jamie’s past makes him perfect for the role of coach. But returning to the court brings more than old memories.

As secrets and shocking betrayals abound, none may be more dangerous than the one Jamie’s been keeping: a secret about the death of Aidan’s husband that could blow his partner’s world apart and destroy forever the fragile bonds of trust and love building between them.

Find out more at: Carina Press | Amazon | Google Play | Kobo | iTunes | B&N | Goodreads

Excerpt:

“I know our schedule’s fucked, but that face of yours is awfully grim.”

Startling at the full-blast Irish accent, Jamie’s head shot up and the phone slipped from his fingers, clattering to the ground. Pick it up, some instinct ordered, but he was too busy losing the rest of his fucking mind. The veneer of calm shattered and any hope of patience took a flying leap out the window.

Because standing in front of him was his stylishly dressed partner, a messenger bag over one shoulder, a coat tossed over the other, and silver-rimmed aviators nestled in waves of auburn hair. More times than he could count, Jamie had imagined Aidan with his natural hair color, and damn if the reality didn’t surpass each and every one of his fantasies.

Mouth dry, heart racing, cheeks burning, Jamie’s fingers twitched with the urge to weave through the long red strands. Reaching down instead, he grabbed his phone, held it between his palms, and wedged his clasped hands between his knees, forestalling his impulse. He tried to force out a “hello,” but his brain refused to cooperate, all the blood in his body having raced south where his jeans became painfully tight.

Fuck.

He was gone. So far gone. Past casual, past a crush, past simple attraction.

This was Aidan, sans disguises, and Jamie wanted him more than he’d ever wanted anything.

“Is it that bad a dye job?” Aidan asked, interrupting his mental breakdown.

“Ai—” he started, only to be corrected with a brogue-laced, “Ian.”

Jamie blinked, reminded that this was a disguise. It sure as hell didn’t feel like one. “I wasn’t expecting this.” His eyes raked over Aidan again, taking it all in. Dressed in jeans and a navy V-neck sweater, the dark blues set off his pale skin, the freckles, his autumn eyes, that hair…

“Fuck,” he muttered out loud.

Aidan shifted on his feet in front of him. “I said I was making a few more changes.”

“Yeah, but this—” he spread his arms wide, the motion totally inadequate “—is more than a fucking few.”

Their gazes locked, heat sparking. “Problem, Jamie?” Aidan’s eyes flickered down to the very obvious problem.

“You gotta stop that.”

He dropped his messenger bag and shrugged the coat off his shoulder. “Stop what?”

“Saying my name in that accent.”

“Mr. Walker, then,” he said with a smirk.

Way too smooth.

Jamie propped his elbows on this knees and covered his face with his hands. “God no,” he groaned. “Not that either.”

Aidan laughed as the buzzer went off on the conveyor behind them.

Leather smacked the backs of Jamie’s hands, and he snagged Aidan’s coat before it hit the ground.

Leather?

“Cover that up,” Aidan said, eyeing his crotch. “And get yourself together. Debrief in the car.” Turning, he headed for the spinning luggage carousel, giving Jamie a prime view of his sinfully fitted jeans.

Get himself together…

Yeah, right.

Copyright © 2017 Layla Reyne

Review:

I enjoyed the suspense of Cask Strength–definitely had me on the edge of my seat, especially for the last 20% or so–couldn’t put it down! Though Irish and Whiskey are mainly dealing with their new undercover case here, a major plot thread from book one ( Single Malt ) is also still a pretty big deal (and continues to be into the next book) so if you haven’t read the first book, you’re definitely going to be behind. I liked both Jamie (Whiskey) and Aidan (Irish) a lot and loved them together, though Aidan’s behavior for much of the book was pretty frustrating. It was more understandable when we saw things from his POV, but still…hopefully they’ll manage to stay in the place they are at the end of this book and not make a backward slide relationship-wise like they did between 1 and 2.

Rating: 3 1/2 stars / C+

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

Other books in the Agents Irish & Whiskey series:

 

SINGLE MALT

Available Now: Carina Press | Amazon | Google Play | Kobo | iTunes | B&N| Goodreads

“Sexy, smart and suspenseful – this book has it all.”—HelenKay Dimon, author of MR. & MR. SMITH

 

“SINGLE MALT is full of explosive chemistry, captivating characters, and edge-of-your-seat suspense. A must read for any romantic suspense fan!”—Megan Erickson, USA Today Bestselling Author

 

BARREL PROOF

On Sale August 7, 2017: Carina Press | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iTunes | Google Play | Goodreads

 

About Layla Reyne:

2016 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist, Layla Reyne, was raised in North Carolina and now calls San Francisco home. She enjoys weaving her bi-coastal experiences into her stories, along with adrenaline fueled suspense and heart pounding romance. When she’s not writing stories to excite her readers, she downloads too many books, watches too much television, and cooks too much food with her scientist husband, much to the delight of their smushed-face, leftover-loving dogs.

Connect with Layla: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads

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New Release Review and Giveaway! THE FIREMAN’S SON by Tara Taylor Quinn (Where Secrets are Safe)

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On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

The Fireman’s Son
(Where Secrets Are Safe #11)
by Tara Taylor Quinn
Adult Contemporary Romance
Mass Market Paperback & ebook, 384 pages
May 1st 2017 by Harlequin Superromance

Secrets are burning out of control

After she broke his heart in college, Faye Walker is the last person fire chief Reese Bristow ever expected to see again, especially as his new EMT. But that’s not Reese’s only surprise. Faye has an eight-year-old son, Elliott, whose counseling at The Lemonade Stand shelter is her first priority.

It’s nearly impossible to accept that she had a child with another man—and married that man—right after their breakup. Trusting Faye won’t be easy. Especially when she reveals a secret about the boy that might tear them apart for good.

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Review:

What an emotional ride!

All three of the main characters here–Faye, Reese, and Elliott, Faye’s eight-year-old son–have been through so much before the story even begins. Watching them deal with the implications of the past, not to mention the new tension and drama that their present brings them, makes for a truly engrossing read. I literally couldn’t put this one down until I’d seen them get to their HEA!

My only real…issue? I don’t want to say “complaint” because it’s definitely not that strong…is that their issues were so real and so all-encompassing that the romance part of the book is really only the last less than ten percent of it. There’s angst galore throughout, of course, given their pasts and the secrets that they’ve both been keeping for so long, but seeing Faye and Reese together doesn’t really happen until the very end, and when it does, it comes really quickly. I would love to see more of them (and Elliott!) as they navigate through the no-doubt not-always-smooth waters that lay ahead for them.

So hopefully they’ll make some longish appearances in future series books? 🙂

The Fireman’s Son, like the other books in this series that I’ve read so far, would work fine as a standalone. Other series characters play a role here, but if you haven’t read their stories (yet!) you’ll do just fine.

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

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Other Books in the Where Secrets Are Safe Series
(Books released as of March 2017. Each can be read as a standalone.)

  
  
   

About the Author

The author of more than 70 original novels, in twenty languages, Tara Taylor Quinn is a USA Today bestseller with over six million copies sold. A 2015 RITA finalist Tara appears frequently on bestseller lists, including #1 placement on Amazon lists, and multiple showings on the Publisher’s Weekly Bestseller list. She has appeared on national and local TV across the country, including CBS Sunday Morning.

Tara is a supporter of the National Domestic Violence Hotline. If you or someone you know might be a victim of domestic violence in the United States, please contact 1-800-799-7233.

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Domestic Violence Shelter Drive

As Tara supports speaking out against domestic violence and supporting those who have been abused, both through her books and in her community, she would love for you to join her in donating items to a shelter in your area. Find out more here.

Tour Giveaways

1ST RAFFLECOPTER:
1 winner will receive ebooks of Where Secrets are Safe series books 1 – 13 (open internationally)
1 winner (per the four tour segments) will receive a $10 Amazon eGift Card (open internationally)

2ND RAFFLECOPTER:
1 winner will receive 25,000 Harelquin My Rewards Points, equivalent to 5 books (US and CAN only)
1 winner will receive 5,000 Harelquin My Rewards Points, equivalent to 1 book (US and CAN only)

Both Rafflecopter giveaways end November 30th, 2017

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Tour Schedule

May 6th: Launch
May 7th:
underneath the covers
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May 8th:
Thoughts of a Blonde
Brooke Blogs
EskieMama & Dragon Lady Reads
May 9th:
Nicole’s Book Musings
Angels with Attitude Book Reviews
May 10th:
Celticlady’s Reviews
Becky on Books
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May 11th:
Superromance Facebook Party, 7 PM EDT/4 PM PDT
Kindle and Me
Book Lover in Florida
Harlie’s Books
May 12th:
Harlequin Junkie
May 13th: Grand Finale

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New Release and Giveaway! CURSED by Jennifer Chance (Gowns & Crowns #5)

Synopsis:

When the prince she was supposed to marry falls for someone else, Edeena Saleri is done with Garronia’s courts, crowns, and family curses. She grabs her sisters and escapes to the nobility-free coast of South Carolina, USA.

Refuge isn’t anything like it’s supposed to be, however. The family’s island vacation home now borders a singles’ retreat, which Edeena’s sisters embrace all too eagerly. Worse, the private protection firm Edeena hires is run by the most infuriating man she’s ever met–a rough-hewn, dark-eyed, charismatic charmer named, of course, Prince. He’s not a royal and he’s nowhere near noble, so there’s no way he can break the family curse. And yet…

Vincent “Prince” Rallis has spent his whole life justifying his name. The son of hardworking immigrant parents, he’s hustled for every dime, finally building a personal security firm with the muscle and grit to live up to its promises. He’s used to keeping his cool, but when the high-strung, high-class Edeena shuts him down despite her obvious interest, pride demands he fight for her–even if he has to track her back to her glittering court to prove his point. Only once Prince arrives in the seaside kingdom of Garronia, he finds his troubles are just beginning.

Sometimes love in Garronia can be magic. And sometimes you’re just Cursed.

Available at:  Amazon

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Review:

A sweet romance!

Cursed has a slow start–there’s a lot of ominous grumbling about the “curse” which admittedly I might have just skimmed through, because I just wanted to get to the good stuff, which would explain why it seemed like they were making a big deal out of…well, not very much (for a cursed family, they sure seemed to be doing okay, honestly) but after about 40% or so things started to pick up. Vince and Edeena were very cute together–her determination to sacrifice herself for her sisters got to be a bit much at times, but every time Vince managed to get her out of her own head for a few minutes it was easy for the reader to forget all the drama as well. And the his big romantic gesture? Makes everything that came before it pale by comparison 🙂

Though it’s fifth in the Gowns & Crowns series, it’s almost a spin-off of the original four, and would work fine as a standalone. The H/h from the other books make appearances, but it’s not necessary to have read their books…yet ;)…to enjoy this one.

Rating: 4 stars / B+

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

 

About Jennifer Chance:

Jennifer Chance is the award-winning author of the new adult Rule Breakers series as well as the contemporary romance modern royals Gowns & Crowns series. A lover of books, romance, and happily-ever-afters, she lives and writes in Ohio. In addition to her work in romance, she is also Jenn Stark, urban fantasy author of the Immortal Vegas series, and Jennifer McGowan, YA author of the Elizabethan spy series The Maids of Honor. She is truly NOT trying to become 27 Jennifers, but it’s getting a little dicey.

Connect with Jennifer: Website | BookBub | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon

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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!

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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.

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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.

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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.

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New Release Review and Giveaway! HIS FAMILY OF CONVENIENCE by Amy Ayers (The Medina Legacy)

 

About the Book:

Senna Callas’s one-night stand with her alpha asshole boss, Marco Medina, was supposed to mark the end of her internship and their ridiculous attraction. After being unreachable and ignoring Senna for a year, Marco sweeps back into the country and summons her to his office, revealing he knows her secret…the secret created during their explosive night together.

Marco is determined to be there for the son he’s just discovered he has, but when it comes to being with Senna, his choices aren’t his own. His meddling family expects him, the firstborn son, to follow through with the arranged marriage set up when he was a child. And Senna has no plans on being his mistress and still resents how her attempts to contact Marco were ignored. The only thing going right between them is the attraction that burns no matter the complicated situation they’re in.

Marco would do anything to protect his family, anything except decide between the legacy he was born into and the young family he’s just found…

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Excerpt:

He walked over to where she was standing with an involuntary need to be closer to her. She faced him, and the vulnerability etched into her features made him long to take her in his arms and kiss her until she was breathless.

“Please,” she implored, her hands finding their way to a resting spot on his chest. He didn’t know if he could resist her much longer. “The past is, well, the past. We have a son, and we need to look ahead. We don’t have to be best friends or even friendly acquaintances if you don’t want to. But you have to promise me, whatever happens, you’ll always be there for Max. And I don’t mean by sending a check once in a while. Promise me you’ll be a father, a dad. That you’ll take him to a baseball game. Or you’ll take him to the beach and look for starfish together. Promise me you’ll just be a presence in his life. He deserves that.”

He swallowed hard. “Always, princesa. I promise.”

They stood that way for what seemed like a long while, neither speaking, just being close with each other and processing the intimacy between them. He wanted to kiss her. He needed to kiss her. It was all flooding back, all the memories that had been locked away so he could focus on his father and ensure that Medina Enterprises would endure. That his family would endure.

He’d forgotten how her essence had a way of seeping into the marrow of his bones. How hard it was to keep his hands off her while working together. She was honest, pure. No guile. She demanded nothing of him directly, but his body begged to obey hers.

Without thinking, Marco reached up to cup her face, lifting her chin closer to his. He brought her lips to his, and she did nothing to resist. They came together slowly at first; he brushed his lips with hers, tasting, teasing. But he couldn’t hold back, and their kiss intensified. Her arms snaked around his neck and held his head firmly in place. His hands moved lower until they rested low on her hips right above the curve of her behind. He brought her hips closer, eliminating the space between them.

His tongue found its way into her mouth, gently exploring every crevice. She moaned softly under his ministrations, and he was hard and throbbing almost instantly.

How could he have forgotten the sweetness of her lips, the softness of her skin, the silky feel of her tresses as his hands wandered up and down her back? He wanted to sneak out onto the grounds, forgetting about everyone else, and spirit her away to the gentle rolling hills by the nearby lake and spend all night making up for lost time.

Review:
This must be my week for first-time authors 🙂

His Family of Convenience is a quick little read, with a touch of a Cinderella story, some secret baby, and a second-chance romance thrown in for good measure. There isn’t a whole lot of depth to the story–as soon as you think Marco and Senna have run into an insurmountable problem, it’s solved fairly quickly soon after–but still it was an entertaining read. The two of them are very cute together, and Max, of course, is absolutely adorable. The push-and-pull aspect of the story (his original plan for Max and Senna, which he abandons almost immediately after seeing his son and she never finds out about…they can’t be together and push each other away and seconds later are in each other’s arms…he can’t give up his place in the company and loyalty to his family, or can he?) was a bit much at times, but still there’s definite promise in Ms. Ayers’ writing.

We don’t really get to know the other Medinas terribly well here–the focus is really on Senna and Marco and Max–but still, I’ll be keeping an eye open for more of The Medina Legacy in the future.

Rating 3 1/2 stars / B-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

Meet the Author:

Amy Ayers remembers writing her first fiction as an introspective tween in rainy Portland, Oregon. She took a break from writing to move with her family to the desert of Phoenix, Arizona. She graduated from the University of Arizona with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Women’s Studies which lends itself to writing strong, opinionated heroines. She has worked as an Editor, a Job-Skills Trainer, and as an Executive Assistant. She even spent a college semester writing articles for the Tombstone Epitaph in the town ‘too tough to die’. She currently divides her time between her writing, her family (including one husband, four boys and two dogs), and her daily commute to work. A life-long lover of literature, she began writing her own contemporary romance in earnest in 2014 and is thrilled to be published with Entangled. She hopes to win the lottery someday so that she can devote all of her time to writing; until then, she writes when she can.

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New Release Review and Giveaway! ARRANGED by Lexi Blake (1001 Dark Nights & A Masters and Mercenaries novella)

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Kash Kamdar is the king of a peaceful but powerful island nation. As Loa Mali’s sovereign, he is always in control, the final authority. Until his mother uses an ancient law to force her son into marriage. His prospective queen is a buttoned-up intellectual, nothing like Kash’s usual party girl. Still, from the moment of their forced engagement, he can’t stop thinking about her.

Dayita Samar comes from one of Loa Mali’s most respected families. The Oxford-educated scientist has dedicated her life to her country’s future. But under her staid and calm exterior, Day hides a few sexy secrets of her own. She is willing to marry her king, but also agrees that they can circumvent the law. Just because they’re married doesn’t mean they have to change their lives. It certainly doesn’t mean they have to fall in love.

After one wild weekend in Dallas, Kash discovers his bride-to-be is more than she seems. Engulfed in a changing world, Kash finds exciting new possibilities for himself. Could Day help him find respite from the crushing responsibility he’s carried all his life? This fairy tale could have a happy ending, if only they can escape Kash’s past…
arranged

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Excerpt:

“Are we a happy couple?”

“I don’t think we’ve had time enough to be sure of that yet, but I know we were once.” She’d thought it through in a way she never had before. She had a much different view of those months with Kash in England. “You were courting me back then, weren’t you? You wanted me to be your girlfriend.”

He sat down in the plush chair that dominated the sitting area portion of his bedroom. Normally they stayed in the living room, but he’d wanted more privacy. This was the only place in his suite that wasn’t covered by CCTV, the only place where they could truly be alone. Everything about the space was masculine and decadent, including the man himself. With his hair disheveled and his chest on display, it wasn’t hard at all to see him as a primal male.

One she’d dearly enjoy taming.

“I don’t think you realized it at the time.”

She was willing to admit her faults. “I didn’t. I had my nose in a book most of the time back then and I had little experience with men. No, I had no idea you were interested in me beyond copying my notes from class when you slept in.”

“It would surprise you to know that I often thought about sleeping in with you.” His voice had gone low and gentle. “I was crazy about you back then, Day. I find myself in the same position today, but I don’t want to scare you. I know you think we should take this slow and I will honor your wishes, but I want this marriage to work. You see me as a playboy, but I don’t want to be some forty-plus player who trades on his money to keep young girls around him. I think it might be time for me to find out if I can be the king my father would have wanted me to be.”

It was all she needed to hear. If he wanted to try, she was ready. Despite his reputation, she’d fallen right back into a peaceful friendship with him. He’d been the old Kash, supporting her when she needed it. He’d asked her questions about her work with the education department and then gave her ideas on how to handle the parliament. He hadn’t told her what she should do. He’d suggested, debated.

“I think you’ll find me less averse to giving this marriage a real try than you think. I was planning on talking to you about using the Palm Ceremony to begin to explore what we could be as a couple.”

He frowned. “I’m not sure what that means. You want to talk? Or have counseling? Because that sounds terrible.”

“I was talking about sex, Kashmir. I thought we could use this time to see if we’re sexually compatible.”

He popped up out of his chair like an eager puppy. “Yes. I think that is a brilliant idea. We should start now. Don’t worry. I intend to be gentle with you.”

She didn’t move at all. “Like you are with your lovely flowers?”

“Women deserve a man’s care,” he said quietly. “Day, I can’t erase my past.”

“I don’t want you to.” He misunderstood her problems with his statement. “But I do need you to understand that I’m not one of those flowers. I’m not here to sit at your side and bat my eyelashes in the hopes that you’ll buy something for me. I don’t work like that. I don’t care about your money.”

“That is easy for you to say. You’re about to have access to all of it, aren’t you?”

He had a point. “Even if I wasn’t, that wouldn’t be why I would want you, Kash. Sit down. We have some things to talk about before we get started. Come here close to me.”

He moved to the chaise she was sitting on, lowering himself down with a sullen frown. “I knew there would be talking.”

She was fairly certain his lovely flowers did very little talking, but he would get used to it. “Why did you want me back then?”

“I liked you. I liked talking to you. I liked being around you. I rather liked who I was when I was around you.” His expression softened. “I don’t think you knew how alluring you were to someone like me. You didn’t understand how beautiful you were, so you didn’t use it against me. Most women do.”

“Well, that happens when you surround yourself with women who are mostly valued for their looks. I don’t blame them. They’ve been told their beauty is the only thing worthy about them. If you want to meet women who don’t feel that way, you should probably expand out of models and actresses.”

“Well, you would be surprised how many gorgeous, sexy physicists turn me down because I’m not smart enough for them.”

Review:

A second-chance romance/coming to terms with your true self story, <i>Arranged</i> has a whole lot going on for a novella. I really liked Day; she was a strong character who also struggled with being accepted for who she was. I was with her 100%. Kash, though? He had his awesome times, but he also went through some major a$$hattery. Don’t get me wrong, I get where he was coming from and can see why he would think the way he thought…kind of…but man, I wanted to reach in a slug him one in the middle part of the book. At least he was at odds with himself during much of it, knowing that his reactions weren’t the ones he should be having, but man…

Still, they worked it out in the end, thank goodness. Once again a whole lot of past characters came in and out of the story, and since I still haven’t read any of the books save the last 1001 Dark Nights novella (shame, I know! But school’s almost over…) I once again felt a bit out of the loop not knowing who everyone was already. We really don’t need to know their stories to appreciate this one, it just feels a bit like being at a huge party where you only know one or two people at first. So–a standalone? Yes, with reservations. Will it make you want to read others? Yep 🙂

Rating: 4 stars / B+

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

 

About the author:

NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog int eh world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.

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