New Release and Giveaway! SINFUL SCOTTISH LAIRD by Julia London (The Highland Grooms #2)

Synopsis:

A young widow puts her sexy suitors to the test in New York Times bestselling author Julia London’s scintillating return to the idyllic Scottish Highlands.

Widowed and forced to remarry in three years’ time or forfeit her son’s inheritance, Daisy Bristol, Lady Chatwick, has plenty of suitors vying for her hand and her fortune. But a letter from a long-lost love sends Daisy and her young son to her Scottish Highland estate to buy time for his return. Along the way she encounters the powerful Cailean Mackenzie, laird of Arrandale and a notorious smuggler, and she is utterly and unwillingly bewitched.

Cailean has no use for any Sassenach in his glen. But Daisy’s brazen, flirtatious nature and alluring beauty intrigue him. When her first love appears unexpectedly at her estate, Cailean knows that a passionate woman like Daisy cannot marry this man. And to prevent the union, Cailean must put his own life at risk to win her heart.

 

Review:

Absolutely loved!

Cailean and Daisy’s story started out with more than a little bit of lust at first sight, compounded with a healthy dollop of distrust and dislike, to make this one heck of a enemies-to-friends-to-lovers story in the end. With Scottish brogue and plaids–really, there’s not a single downside to be had here! 😉

I just adored both the hero and heroine here, and found myself wanting nothing more than for the two of them to get together while I was reading this book–which of course is exactly what you’re looking for in a romance! Their reasons for not being together made sense, even as I railed against them–truly, they gave this story the best kind of angst–and OMG, Daisy’s young son Ellis? I. Love. That. Kid. Seeing him open up and become the little boy that had been hiding inside him all along made me want to stand up and cheer. (And gah! Seeing Cailean with him? Gave me all kinds of feels. Just when I thought the guy couldn’t become any more awesome…) My only complaint is that we don’t get to see nearly enough of Daisy and Cailean’s HEA here, but I fully expect that to be remedied in future books in the series 🙂

Though this is the second book in the series, it worked just fine as a standalone. Book one ( Wild Wicked Scot ) is Cailean’s parents’ story–their story is hinted at here, but if you haven’t read it yet you’re not at a disadvantage at all. I’m not saying that you won’t want to read their story ASAP, though–chances are you will–but at least that will keep you busy until younger brother Rabbie’s story ( Hard-Hearted Highlander ) comes out later this year 😉

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

Purchase Links:

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

About the author:

Julia London is the New York Times and USA Today best selling author of more than two dozen romantic fiction novels. She is the author of the popular historical romance series, the Cabot Sisters, including The Trouble with Honor, The Devil Takes a Bride, and The Scoundrel and the Debutante. She is also the author of several contemporary romances, including Homecoming Ranch, Return to Homecoming Ranch, and The Perfect Homecoming.

Julia is the recipient of the RT Bookclub Award for Best Historical Romance and a six-time finalist for the prestigious RITA award for excellence in romantic fiction.

Connect with Julia:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

 

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New Release Review and Giveaway! SUDDENLY DATING by Julia London (Lake Haven #2)

 The ruse is starting to feel real—and romantic. 
 
SUDDENLY DATING
Lake Haven #2
Julia London
Releasing Nov 8th, 2016
Montlake

If only Lola Dunne had the time—and the courage—she’d write her novel, and maybe even start dating again. When her friend offers the use of her summer home overlooking Lake Haven, Lola sees the chance to focus on herself for a change, and she eagerly accepts.

Engineer Harry Westbrook is waiting for his ship to come in. But it’s not happening soon enough for his girlfriend, who’s left him for good…again. To nurse Harry’s heartache, his pal extends an invite to his lake house in East Beach.

When it turns out that Harry’s and Lola’s friends are a divorcing, not-on-speaking-terms couple sparring over the same house, the strangers find themselves accidental (and reluctant) roommates for the summer. They agree to make the best of it, even posing as a couple to mingle among East Beach’s well-heeled crowd. But the ruse is starting to feel real—and romantic. Are they brave enough to reveal their feelings before the summer nights turn cold?

tastytoursexcerpt

New York City April

The first time Melissa broke up with Harry was on a Wednesday night, because Harry had come home later than he’d  said he would. Okay,    a lot later. Late-late. But he couldn’t help it—his crew had run into a problem installing a support beam under a bridge and it had taken a colossal effort by dozens of men to right that sinking ship.

When he walked into their little apartment, he knew he was in trouble. Melissa was sitting at the bistro table with an empty wine bottle before her and the dregs of said bottle in her glass. There was a plate of food in Harry’s spot: congealed spaghetti and something else he didn’t want to examine too closely. “I’m sorry—”

“I don’t want to hear it,” she snapped with a queenly flick of her wrist. “I’m done.”

Done. What did that mean, exactly? For the evening? With him? Harry wanted to ask, but as he was a veteran of this relationship, he knew better than to seek clarification when that much wine obviously had been drunk.

Melissa’s blue eyes narrowed; she knew he didn’t know what she meant. She came to her feet. Clumsily. And swaying a little when she pushed her long dark hair back over her shoulder. She had on a very short skirt and heels that made her look hot, and, God, Harry wished he’d made it home on time.

“I’ve had it with you, Harry. You’re always late. You come in looking like some Game of Thrones character with your shaggy hair and your dirty clothes,” she said, gesturing wildly in his direction.

“Well . . . I work in bridge construction,” he said calmly. “It’s kind of a dirty job. I apologize for my hair, but you know that I wear a hard hat most of the day.”

“So you can’t get a haircut?” she cried, and pitched forward, catch- ing herself on the table.

This was the first he knew that his hair was an issue. He dug in his pocket for a hair band and pulled it back into a short tail.

“Oh, yeah, that works,” she snapped. “Here’s the thing, Harry. You do whatever you want,” she sang, casting her arm wide, “and then you expect me to sit here and wait with a dinner I slaved over.”

Here they went with the same sort of argument they’d been having a lot lately. “I don’t expect you to wait, Melissa. That’s why I told you to go ahead without me,” he reminded her. “And, to be fair, it’s spaghetti.”

Fire leapt into her blue eyes.

“Not that I don’t appreciate it,” he hastily added. Jesus, he didn’t want to do this right now. He was tired, he was hungry, and that damn support beam was going to cost him more money he didn’t have.

tastytoursreview

 

I really enjoyed Harry and Lola’s story! It’s a forced roommate/fake relationship/friends with benefits mashup kind of book (sounds confusing, I know–though it does feel a bit schizophrenic at times, it manages to work somehow) that had me both shaking my head and smiling at turns. Though I desperately wanted Lola to just put her foot down about a million times, I also got why she had so much trouble doing it. Thank goodness for Harry–he at least stayed focused on getting what he wanted from page one, even though his witchy girlfriend dumped him because of it and his mother was about a million times worse.

Actually, a whole lot of the secondary characters in this one leave much to be desired. Fortunately, Harry and Lola spend the bulk of their time together in an absolutely fantastic summer home that doesn’t belong to either of them and that they shouldn’t be in in the first place…but I digress. They’re alone, in their own little bubble of total luxury, and it’s better that way. Swimming and cooking and trashing the kitchen (that part’s Lola) and freaking out about the trashed kitchen (Harry) and enjoying their mutual benefits and falling in love.

Sigh 🙂

And now it’s time for me to leave my Harry and Lola bubble and go back to reality…until the next book, that is.

(Suddenly Dating is the second book in the series, but it absolutely works as a standalone. Mia and Everett from book one make an appearance, but they are very minor characters here, and there really isn’t even a hint of their backstory, so you really won’t feel as if you’ve missed anything by starting with this one.)

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.



Julia London is the New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers
Weekly bestselling author of more than thirty romance novels. Her historical titles include the popular Desperate Debutantes series, the Secrets of Hadley Green series, and the Cabot Sisters series; her contemporary works include the Lake Haven, Pine River, and Cedar Springs series. She has won the RT Bookclub Award for Best Historical Romance and has been a six-time finalist for the
prestigious RITA Award for excellence in romantic fiction. She lives in Austin, Texas.
 

 

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New Release Review and Giveaway! SUDDENLY IN LOVE by Julia London (Lake Haven #1)

 Enter to Win a Gifted Amazon Ebook copy of SUDDENLY IN LOVE

SUDDENLY IN LOVE
Lake Haven #1
Julia London
Releasing April 5th, 2016
Montlake
Mia Lassiter is thrilled to finally put her artistic skills to use working for her aunt’s interior design shop in her hometown of East Beach. While renovating an old mansion overlooking stunning Lake Haven, she encounters a scruffy but attractive man named Brennan—the owner’s son. She doesn’t realize this sexy recluse is actually Everett Alden, the world-famous rock star in hiding who’s nursing his own artistic and personal crises.
As their personalities clash, tension simmers between the struggling artist and jaded musician, and their time spent alone together in the gorgeous old house only serves to turn up the heat. Soon, Mia and Brennan’s creative passions boil over to inspire passions of another kind…
But reality comes crashing in when Mia’s celeb-obsessed cousin discovers Brennan’s true identity—and reveals it to the world. As paparazzi swarm the mansion, Brennan is thrust back into his rock star lifestyle. Will Mia lose her soul mate just when she’s finally found him?
Can their love survive the glaring spotlight?

 

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Excerpt-Banner

Mia had no idea how she got out of there. Had Vincent thrown her out, or had she crawled out? She remembered being on the train, staring at the ad across from her of a handsome man with shaving cream all over his face. She remembered slowly realizing that Mr. Brockway was right.

His delivery sucked, but he was right. He’d hit the nail on the head, had zeroed in on the thing that had nagged at Mia for a very long time, but she hadn’t been able to name. Her work had no clear vision, no real point of view. It was what her professors called “needs improvement” and “let’s work on what message you’re trying to convey.” She tried one idea after the next, never finding that common thread in her body of work. Her subjects were run of the mill.

He was right—she didn’t have what it took to be a working, viable artist. It was so unfair! Her love of art was what ran through her veins.

She couldn’t keep the desire out of her. She couldn’t not create.

Mia was so shaken that she didn’t notice her landlady until she almost collided with her. Mrs. Chalupnik was standing in the entry hall with one thick arm across her body, holding her threadbare bath-robe closed.

“Oh, hi, Mrs. Chalupnik.” She put her head down and tried to scoot past. She was on the verge of a meltdown and didn’t have time to chat.

“The check, it’s no good,” Mrs. Chalupnik said, waving a paper at Mia with her free hand.

Mia’s step slowed. “What?”

“Your rent check is no good!” Mrs. Chalupnik said, only louder. “It comes back with insufficient funds!”

Mia felt a horrible twist of impending doom. “That’s impossible!” she cried, and took the paper, staring at it. How was that possible?

“Now you owe me two hundred dollars on top of rent,” Mrs. Chalupnik said. “You have until Friday.”

“But I can’t get it by Friday,” Mia said. Her head was reeling. “There has to be some mistake. I’m very careful about this—it’s impossible I bounced a rent check.”

“My eyes do not lie,” Mrs. Chalupnik said, jabbing a finger dangerously near her eye for emphasis. She snatched the paper from Mia’s hands. “Your bank, it doesn’t tell you this?”

Her bank. The truth was that Mia hadn’t collected her mail in several days. And she had turned off notices on her phone to keep the bat-tery from draining.

“You find the money,” Mrs. Chalupnik said. She turned around and opened the door to her apartment. The smell of sauerkraut wafted out and hit Mia squarely in the face before Mrs. Chalupnik slammed the door shut.

Mia whirled around, hurried to her mailbox, and opened it. Several things fell out, and among them, two notices from her bank. She fell back against the wall and slid down to her haunches in her stupid tea-stained dress and with a rash where her portfolio had rubbed against her leg as she’d trudged home.

So this, apparently, was how a life was completely deconstructed.

Review-Banner
 
For once, a secret-celebrity/”regular” person romance that works!
I loved that Mia not only had no clue who Brennan was (half of her appeal at first, of course) but she gave him all kinds of (totally deserved) grief when they first met. So much fun to read!
I’m not sure that “suddenly” works for how they fell in love–okay, it was only a few weeks, but it still felt like it grew slowly and surely–but I really enjoyed watching it happen. It took Brennan waaaay too long to tell her who he was, sure–but then each time he thought maybe he should I wasn’t convinced that it was the “right” time either. And of course his big romantic gesture is awesome, so it’s hard to be too critical of the guy 😉
This was my first of Ms. London’s contemporaries, but it definitely won’t be the last! I can’t wait to see what is going to happen next in Lake Haven!
Rating: 4 stars / A-
I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

Born in Canyon, Texas, and raised on a ranch, Julia London didn’t have her eye on writing romance right away. After graduating with a degree in political science from the University of Texas in Austin, she moved out to Washington, DC, eventually working in the White House. She later decided to take a break from government work and start writing.
Today, she is the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, and USA Today bestselling author of more than thirty novels. She writes historical romance and contemporary women’s fiction, and her most popular series include the Secrets of Hadley Green series, the Cabot Sisters series, the Desperate Debutantes
series, the Lear Sisters series, and the Pine River series. She is a recipient of the RT Book Reviews Best Regency Historical Romance award for The Dangerous Gentleman, and a six-time finalist for the renowned RITA Award for excellence in romantic fiction. She resides in Austin, Texas.
 

New Release Review and Giveaway! THE PERFECT BARGAIN by Julia London (How to Marry a Highlander #1)

An adorable fake relationship story!

TVTPerfectBargain-JuliaLondon

The Perfect Bargain
How to Marry a Highlander # 1

By: Julia London writing as Jessa McAdams

Releasing June 30, 2015

Entangled: Lovestruck

 

Blurb:

American lass seeks brawny Scot…

As if being newly single isn’t brutal enough, Sloane Chatfield’s friends are getting obnoxious about setting her up. When Sloane insists she’s waiting for a certain sexy fictional Highlander to come along, her friends surprise her with a trip to Scotland to find her a new boyfriend. She’d rather have a root canal. But if she can find a Highland hunk to “break her heart” before her friends arrive…

In a remote Highland village, Galen Buchanan is struggling to keep the family pub afloat. Everything is falling apart, he’s running out of money, and now there’s an opinionated American lass parked at his best table, driving him mad. But then Sloane asks Galen to be her pretend Highland boyfriend…and offers him enough money to save the pub. It’s only for a few days, he figures. What’s the worst that could happen?

 

Review:

A cute story with some very funny moments, the first book in the How to Marry a Highlander series is a quick-to-read novel with a real “rom-com” movie feel, perfect for a lazy summer day in the hammock.

Though it isn’t without its dubious moments (going all the way to Scotland to get away from her annoying but loving matchmaking friends? A tad bit excessive), overall I enjoyed this book. I liked Sloane and Galen together and love the fake relationship troupe–so, throw in a Scot in a kilt and a handful of humorous scenes and I’ll be reasonably content.

The Perfect Bargain took the better part of an afternoon to read, and it was an enjoyable way to pass the time. I’ll definitely be looking for more from this series when I’m looking for a light and easy contemporary romance read.

Rating: 3 1/2 stars / B+

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

 

 Link to Follow Tour

Goodreads Link

 Perfect_Bargain

Buy Links:   Amazon | B & N iTunes | Kobo

Author Info:julia london

Julia London is the New York Times, USA Today, and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author of more than thirty romantic fiction novels. She is the author of the popular Cabot Sisters historical series, including The Trouble with Honor, The Devil Takes a Bride, and the The Scoundrel and the Debutante. She is also the author of several acclaimed contemporary romances, including The Cedar Springs series, and the recent Homecoming Ranch, Return to Homecoming Ranch, and The Perfect Homecoming. Julia has added a short contemporary series to her titles as well, including The Perfect Bargain, writing under the name Jessa McAdams.

Julia is the recipient of the RT Bookclub Award for Best Historical Romance and a four time finalist for the prestigious RITA award for excellence in romantic fiction. To keep up with all the Julia London news, please visit http://www.julialondon.com. Follow her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/julialondon

 

Author Links:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads

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New Release Review: ONE MAD NIGHT by Julia London

Why is it I always get snowed in with cranky teenagers instead of hot single guys?

One Mad Night: A Novella
by Julia London

 

Synopsis:

One winter’s night a blizzard sweeps across the country, demonstrating that fate can change the course of lives in an instant…and fate has got a sense of humor.

Chelsea Crawford and Ian Rafferty are high profile ad execs in cutthroat competition for a client. When a major winter storm puts New York City on lockdown, the two rivals have to make it through the night together-oh, the many ways in which opposites attract…

Review:

Short and sweet! Enemies to lovers is a favorite troupe of mine, and this one was nicely done with witty banter and undeniable chemistry. Chelsea and Ian are a fun couple to root for…once they’re a couple, that is. 😉

The ending is simply adorable.

What keeps this from being 100% satisfying is the major drawback of a novella–it’s just so short! In this instance, plot is sacrificed somewhat–everything is solved relatively quickly and easily. I’d have liked a bit more drama and angst involved. If you’re looking for a quick and romantic read, though, this could be the novella for you.

If you’re being snowed in for the long haul, on the other hand, you’re going to need a meatier story. (Can you tell it’s snowing here? AGAIN?? Sigh…)

Rating: 3 stars / B-

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

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Books on Sale: Amazon Daily Deal and SBTB Book Club Books at All Romance eBooks

If you’re looking for some end-of-summer reads—or stocking up for the cooler weather months (because what’s better than a comfy couch, a good book, and a quilt? Nothing, that’s what. Unless you add some chocolate.)—there’s quite a few books on sale today.

As part of today’s Amazon’s Kindle Daily Deal, there’s twenty-two romances on sale, all for $1.99 or less. It looks to be a decent selection, from contemporaries to historicals to paranormals. I haven’t read any of them yet, but a few of the titles and authors have made it onto my never-ending TBR list:

Julia London’s the Fancy Lives of the Lear Sisters series—Material Girl, Beauty Queen, and Miss Fortune are all 99 cents—and then, thanks to the miracle that is Whispersnyc for Voice, you can get the Audible audio versions for another 99 cents. That’s an entire series, in ebook and audio, for less than six dollars! Oh, Amazon and Audible, you so have my number. Darn you.

(Speaking of those crafty people at Audible, yesterday they posted on Facebook a link to a free $5 thank you credit to all their fans. So now I can pick up those 99-cent audiobooks with a clear conscience, yes?)

On Goodreads, the three books have between a 3.55 and 3.75 rating. The big downside of book one (Material Girl) appears to be a homophobic attitude that annoyed many readers—it’s the lowest rated one of the group. All three are a modern-day version of King Lear, and gosh darn it, I’m a sucker for modern day adaptations of Shakespeare, both in books and film. (Ten Things I Hate About You, anyone?)

There’re also a few older Carolyn Brown books in the sale as well. I own quite a few of her newer cowboy-themed romances but haven’t gotten to read them yet…the never-ending TBR pile, you know. The ones in the sale (Sweet Tilly, Trouble in Paradise, Chances, and Promises don’t have a ton of reviews up on Goodreads, but most reviewers tend to agree that Brown writes really strong characters.

Finally, three books from the urban fantasy Night Prowler series by J.T. Geissenger (Shadow’s Edge, Edge of Oblivion, and Rapture’s Edge) are all on sale for $1.99—and you can add the audio to the first two books for 99 cents. Again.

Those Whispersync deals. It’s just not fair.

Their Goodreads ratings average between 3.88 and 4.07 stars.

Smart Bitch Sarah from one of my favorite book related sites, Smart Bitches, Trashy Novels moderates a monthly book club on her site. The featured book club book is always available on All Romance Ebooks with a rebate (not exactly a sale, but you use the rebate to get free book(s) later, so it’s a win in my book). This month she’s taking a break from book club while she’s in Australia. Instead, there’s a “Best of the Best” sale going on at the site, with a 30% rebate on thirteen past book club selections.

A few highlights of the rebate sale:

The Chocolate Kiss by Laura Florand is supposed to be wonderful—definitely on my TBR list. I’ve heard nothing but good things about that series.

Austenland by Shannon Hale is one of my favorite Jane Austen-themed chick lit books—and the movie version is coming out soon! (It hasn’t gotten rave reviews, but I’m planning on dragging Mini Moe#2 to it anyway, on principle. Plus, the actor who plays Henry Tilney in the Masterpiece Theater version of Northanger Abbey is in it.)

Tessa Dare’s Any Duchess Will Do was awesome—but then all of Ms. Dare’s books are fabulous.

Katie McGarry’s Pushing the Limits is the first book in my favorite NA series yet. (The Audible version is amazing too, of course. It’s done with two narrators, one for Noah and one for Echo, which is a big plus.)

Speaking of the second Mini Moe, she’s been breathing down my neck for the last half hour, making noises about wanting (MY) computer back. I’d better get going, or our upcoming ten hours in the car (we need to drive home and back again today and tomorrow—high school orientation in the AM) will be brutal.

I need to get back to Tracy March’s The Practice Proposal anyway…really enjoying it so far.

How about you? Do any of the sale books strike your fancy?

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