New Release Review! SOME KIND OF HERO by Suzanne Brockmann (Troubleshooters #17)

Some Kind of Hero
by Suzanne Brockmann

Synopsis:

Navy men don’t come tougher than Lieutenant Peter Greene. Every day he whips hotshot SEAL wannabes into elite fighters. So why can’t he handle one fifteen-year-old girl? His ex’s death left him a single dad overnight, and very unprepared. Though he can’t relate to an angsty teen, he can at least keep Maddie safe—until the day she disappears. Though Pete’s lacking in fatherly intuition, his instinct for detecting danger is razor sharp. Maddie’s in trouble. Now he needs the Troubleshooters team at his back, along with an unconventional ally.

Romance writer Shayla Whitman never expected to be drawn into a real-world thriller—or to meet a hero who makes her pulse pound. Action on the page is one thing. Actually living it is another story. Shay’s not as bold as her heroines, but she’s a mother. She sees the panic in her new neighbor’s usually fearless blue eyes—and knows there’s no greater terror for a parent than having a child at risk. It’s an ordeal Shay won’t let Pete face alone. She’s no highly trained operative, but she’s smart, resourceful, and knows what makes teenagers tick.

Still, working alongside Pete has its own perils—like letting the heat between them rise out of control. Intimate emotions could mean dangerous, even deadly, consequences for their mission. No matter what, they must be on top of their game, and playing for keeps . . . or else Pete’s daughter may be gone for good.

 

Review:

The Troubleshooters are back!

Oh, I loved this one so much–there were actual tears during the epilogue! It had everything that is so awesome about the Troubleshooters series: fantastic main characters (both single parents! Of teens! Older woman/romantic suspense author + SEAL!), great camaraderie between them and the secondary characters (many of them a fun selection of previous Troubleshooter series MCs), edge-of-your-seat suspense, and smoking hot romance 🙂

I loved how Shay’s profession (romantic suspense author) was such a part of her life (occasionally talking to her own fictional character out loud, LOL! Does she ever explain those random comments to Peter, I wonder?) and how her particular skill set helped her to help Peter defeat the bad guys in the end. Although I loved this one cover to cover, the last 25% was truly unputdownable.

Please tell me that there’s going to be more to this series! I need me some more Shay and Peter…

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

View all my reviews

 

Excerpt Release! DELTA: REDEMPTION by Cristin Harber

I can’t wait to read this one! 🙂


We’re just days away from the release of DELTA: REDEMPTION by Cristin Harber, but we couldn’t wait to share a sneak peek! Check out an excerpt below and preorder your copy today!

ABOUT DELTA: REDEMPTION

“My name’s Victoria–No last name. Don’t ask.”

That was all that the woman would share when Delta team’s expert trigger man, an Australian named Ryder, pulled her from the pits of a human trafficking nightmare and took the gun from her hand.

He didn’t mean to steal her revenge but survival was the priority. Now that Victoria’s home? She had a past he was trying to understand while keeping a secret from her that might tear her apart.

But he’s not the only one. When she goes missing, Delta team discovers that Victoria No Name was a one-woman vigilante force, taking on whoever crossed her path, from gun runners to a drug pushing motorcycle club.

She was exactly who Ryder thought she might be, and now he was coming in to help–whether she wanted backup or not.

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READ AN EXCERPT FROM DELTA: REDEMPTION

The tears came. She couldn’t stop them, and she hated the path they burned down her cheeks, hated that Ryder was witness to her unraveling, just like he’d been in Russia.

He rested his hand on her back, not speaking, and he didn’t move to shush her. His palm simply rested there.

“Ryder.” She fell against him, and he wrapped his arm around her.

“Easy, love,” he whispered. “Take a breath.”

“I can’t.”

His chin touched the top of her head, and the arms that she knew could hug her like all hell did the job, wrapping her away from the world until the tears stopped.

“Feel better?”

Nodding, Victoria drew in a deep breath, wiping under her eyes. “Could you hand me a tissue?”

He was already halfway off the bed as if reading her mind and handed her the box. Again, Victoria wiped her face. With another fresh tissue to cover her eyes, she could barely look at him.

“This can’t be what you signed up for,” Victoria mumbled. “Sorry.”

“Stop apologizing.”

She balled the tissue up and hazarded a glance in his direction. “Why did you come here?”

“I was worried about you.” Ryder tilted his head back to the bed. “Can I sit again?”

Victoria’s eyes squeezed shut, but she nodded.

“I don’t have to. Never mind.”

She blinked and refocused on him. “What?”

“I didn’t mean to invade your space.”

Her head dropped. Ruined. He saw nothing but a ruined woman who was so fragile he misread what she meant with a simple look. “I didn’t—I wasn’t… I made a face. Or I didn’t mean to make a face.” She cringed. Such a mess! She couldn’t even get her words right. “I sound like an idiot!”

“You don’t.”

“I do. I’m not someone people worry about. Ever. I worry about people. That’s what I do. Did! I took care of people, and now look at me. I’m broken.” A sob caught in her throat. “I thought I was strong, and now, I’m this.”

He came to her bedside, swooping next to her. “Victoria.”

“Something happened to me. Over there.” She sucked a breath as she collapsed against the pillows. “And I can’t.”

He put a careful hand on her forearm. “Listen to me.” He ducked down close. “I don’t know what’s the right or wrong thing to say now, so I’m just going to say this.”

He came closer so their eyes met. His head was almost level with hers on another pillow, but he held her gaze and didn’t let go.

“Please don’t tell me to get up,” she whispered. “To get back to my life.”

“I wouldn’t dream of it.” Ryder shifted so his weight was semi-on the bed, but he didn’t break their stare. “We brought everyone home, and every girl said you were their savior, that you put yourself in front of guards for them, that you made sure they had food. If nightmares struck, you coaxed them back to sleep. You were their guardian angel in hell.”

Her eyes burned again with tears, but she wouldn’t look away from his emerald ones.

“Whoever you are, love, wherever you’re from, you take as long as you need to get back the strength it took to become you, and I will stay by your side to help you if that’s what it takes.”

“Why?” Her voice broke along with a stray tear.

“Because I admire warriors.”

 

ABOUT CRISTIN HARBER

Cristin Harber is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling romance author. She writes sexy, steamy romantic suspense and military romance. Readers voted her onto Amazon’s Top Picks for Debut Romance Authors in 2013, and her debut Titan series was both a #1 romantic suspense and #1 military romance bestseller.

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New Release Review! THE SOLDIER’S SEDUCTION by Jane Godman

Title: THE SOLDIER’S SEDUCTION
Author: Jane Godman
Publisher: Harlequin
Pages: 288
Genre: Romantic Suspense
From the front lines to unexpected romance—and danger—in small-town Wyoming
After a war zone bomb nearly destroyed Bryce Delaney, he’s worked hard to hide his scars. Back in his Wyoming hometown, he can pretend the nightmares don’t exist. But when a secretive, beautiful new woman in town disappears, Bryce’s protective instincts put him on the front lines again.
Wanted for murder and on the run under an alias, former A-list actress Steffi Grantham can’t return to her life until she clears her name. It’s her boss, Bryce, to the rescue, but desire ties them together, and she’s forced to make a choice that could cost them both. Trusting the wrong man once before almost stole her freedom. Now it might take her life.

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Bryce’s laugh vibrated through her body. “Has anyone ever told you that you are the most stubborn person in the whole world?”
“Apart from you?”
“Apart from me.”
She nodded. “Yes.”
“Your family? I’d like to meet them.”
You never will. The thought jerked her back into reality. “I’ll be fine now, Bryce. You can go. Thanks for your help.”
“Yeah, like that’s going to happen.” The sarcasm in his voice was withering. “I’m just going to walk out of here and leave you when you can’t even crawl to your own bed.”
“You don’t have any choice. I don’t want you here.” With a determined effort, Steffi pushed herself away from him and tried to sit up straight. It was a mistake.
Behind the tinted lenses, the edges of her vision went black. Everything swam out of focus. She heard Bryce call her name in alarm, and the last thing she felt was his strong arms catching her as she fell back onto the pillows.

Review:

The Solider’s Seduction was my first book by Jane Godman, and the second book in the Sons of Stillwater series. It worked okay as a standalone–the main characters of book one (Covert Kisses) play a role here, but the details you might need to know about that story are briefly told here so you’re not at a loss.

I liked the characters here: Bryce and Steffi are interesting, and easy to root for. Their story is full of action and virtually non-stop twists and turns. Their romance feels a bit rushed, however–even though they’ve known each other for a while, their relationship has been boss/employee and rather antagonistic, and I didn’t quite feel the sparks here that I wanted to. The antagonist is sufficiently evil and his actions plenty dire, but overall the suspense plot required some suspension of belief to go along with it.

Overall, though, this was an enjoyable read, and enough clues are given about Vincente’s (the oldest brother of the trio) story to make me keep an eye out for it.

Rating: 3 stars / C

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

 
Jane Godman writes paranormal romance for Harlequin Nocturne and SMP Romance, thrillers for Harlequin Romantic Suspense, and steamy historical and gothic romance. 
Jane also writes erotic romance as Amanda Stewart.
Her latest book is the romantic suspense, The Soldier’s Seduction.

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New Release and Giveaway! SURVIVAL INSTINCT by Janie Crouch (Instinct #3)

*100% of proceeds until July 16 goes to Cystic Fibrosis charities 

with a special $0.99 price!
 SURVIVAL INSTINCT
Instinct #3
Janie Crouch
Releasing July 11, 2017

The voices in her head have decided to kill her. 

Most people joke about hearing voices in their heads. For Chloe Jeffries, they’re real. And as the creative force behind one of the most popular shows on television, she has used the constant flood of voices in her mind to her advantage: fuel for entertainment.

But now one of the voices has decided it wants Chloe all for itself.

Ex-Special Forces soldier Shane Westman just wants to make it back to Wyoming to begin to heal from the horrors of war. The last thing he needs, even as a favor for a good friend, is to take on bodyguard duty of a flighty television writer. But once he does, he realizes there are threats at play he doesn’t understand. And the woman who has somehow begun to thaw his frozen heart is in desperate danger from a menace they can’t see, but is always close.

The voice that will never allow Chloe to escape alive. 

 

*100% of proceeds until July 16 goes to Cystic Fibrosis charities – with a special $0.99 price. Help us stomp CF! Plus, buy Survival Instinct before July 16 and get a free ebook by Janie not available anywhere else! More details here: http://www.janiecrouch.com/si-pp-0717

Chloe Jeffries looked over at her creative team. The Days End team was tired. Worried. The stalker had seen to that. Not to mention all the new bodyguards had definitely put a damper on the creative energy usually surrounding the show. But the new guy coming in definitely wouldn’t.

“The studio is sending in a security expert to coordinate security around here and to investigate our friendly neighborhood stalker,” Chloe told them. “We’re supposed to give him access to anything he needs. I’ve been assured that he will fit in just fine and will not hamper our artistic energy in any way. We won’t even know he’s here.”

“Like that guy walking towards us who definitely doesn’t scream I’m-a-Navy-SEAL or anything?” Travis’ eyebrow was raised so far it looked like it had found a new home in his hairline.

Chloe stared at the man in question. Didn’t seem able to turn away from him even if she wanted to. His long legs were encased in perfectly creased khaki pants, a collared light blue shirt tucked in—also perfectly—at the waist. His broad shoulders were covered in a tailored suit jacket under which Chloe was willing to bet all of this year’s salary lay a shoulder holster for a gun. His posture screamed military. The way he carried himself — the set of his shoulders and lift of his chest.

Alert. Deadly. Ready.

But impressive as his body was, it was his face that drew her more. There was nothing pretty about him. His face was rugged to the point of being harsh. His jaw already holding some stubble even though it wasn’t even yet lunchtime. And she had no doubt Mr. Military Man had shaved this morning, unquestionably during his perfect morning routine. His dark hair was cut close to his head, as if he couldn’t quite decide whether to keep it military short or go for a more relaxed style.

His eyes were hidden behind aviator sunglasses, but Chloe knew he saw everything. Knew he saw her and that if she stopped him right at this moment, blindfolded him and asked him to tell her where everyone was, he’d be able to do so with astounding accuracy, even though there were more than a dozen people milling around that he hadn’t looked at directly.

This man was the epitome of cool, calm, and collected. She could feel the former radiating off him. Wanted to close her eyes and sink towards him. Her brain, always under such constant onslaught with the thoughts of others, and particularly the one voice that had been searing through her mind so agonizingly lately, wanted to bask in this man’s ice. Wanted to douse herself in it.

But she couldn’t. Because while she had no doubt this man would be able to organize the hell out of security and unquestionably catch the stalker and freeze him with his ice-beams after leaping tall buildings in a single bound, there was no way he wasn’t going to hamper the creative energy of the set. Energy that Chloe relied on not only to make Day’s End the greatest show on television, but to keep her own sanity.

He was already sucking in her energy and they hadn’t even spoken yet.

Ten seconds later he was standing directly in front of Chloe with his perfect hair and jaw, perfect shirt tucked into his perfectly pressed pants.

“I’m Shane Westman with the Linear Tactical. We’ve been hired for security,” he said, taking off his sunglasses. Chloe wasn’t a bit surprised to find he had perfectly icy blue eyes. “I need to know who’s in charge.”

There was no way this Shane Westman could stay. No possibility Chloe could allow it.

He was too perfect. Too distracting. Too everything.

He may keep them safe from the stalker but who would keep her safe from him?


Award-winning romantic suspense author and 2017 Romance Writers of America RITA
finalist Janie Crouch recently relocated from Virginia to an American military base in Stuttgart, Germany with her hubby and four kids. She loves travelling, adventure racing, and movies of all kinds. 
 

 

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Release Day Review and Giveaway! RESURRECTION by Katie Reus (Redemption Harbor #1)

Today we have the release day blitz of Resurrection by Katie Reus! We’re so excited to share this fantastic new release with you—check out the festivities and grab your copy today!!

About Resurrection:

From USA Today bestselling author Katie Reus comes the ALL NEW Redemption Harbor series where sparks fly and so do bullets…

She faked her own death…

Skye Arévalo left the CIA and faked her death to protect Colt Stuart, the only man she ever loved. Months later, a brutal kidnapping draws her to quietly infiltrate a dangerous cartel. Just when she thinks she’s home free, things go horribly wrong and she escapes with bloodthirsty enemies on her heels…only to find herself face to face with a bewildered and angry Colt.

He’ll cross every line to save her…

When Colt, a former Marine, finds out the woman he loved betrayed him, he’s shocked and hurt, but it doesn’t stop him from breaking every law on the books to keep her alive. Unfortunately, it might not be enough to stop a powerful enemy who will do anything to see the world burn and Skye dead.

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Exclusive Excerpt:

Colt banged his fist against the door, fear and the smallest bit of hope punching through him. “Answer the fucking door,” he snarled. “Open, or I kick it in.”

“Maybe you should take it down a notch.” Next to him, Brooks shoved an agitated hand through his hair, his Stetson held loosely at his side.

“And maybe you should be freaking out more.” One of their best friends had been holed up in his home for weeks, refusing to talk to anyone, to see anyone. Colt didn’t know exactly what his friend was going through, but he’d lost a lot of damn friends in the sandbox and the only woman he’d ever loved had died too. Something he couldn’t think about right now. He couldn’t focus on his own pain when he could help his friend, when he had a damn purpose.

Mercer had recently lost his wife, and the man wasn’t handling it. The guy had been in love with Mary Grace since he was fifteen. They’d been each other’s world. And two months ago she’d been killed in Mexico, a victim of cartel violence. Allegedly.

Colt hadn’t been in love with Skye since he was a kid, but eight months with her sure felt like a lifetime. Hell, when she died it felt like he’d lost part of himself. The only part that mattered. He had to force himself out of bed every day, to shove back the emptiness. So on one level, he understood how Mercer felt. He shoved that thought right back inside where it belonged and ignored it. He couldn’t fix his own problem, but he could help out Mercer.

Panic swelled through Colt as the seconds ticked by without any response from inside—until he heard cursing on the other side of the door. Good. If his friend was cursing, he was alive. A solid minute later the lock snicked loudly as it twisted open.

Colt grabbed the handle and shoved it open, pushing past his best friend in case he tried to slam the door closed in his face.

Mercer, wearing boxers and nothing else, had grown a full black beard and his dark eyes were glassy. “What the hell are you doing here this early?”

“First, it’s two o’clock in the afternoon. Second…” Colt hauled off and punched him right in the nose. He needed to wake Mercer the hell up. Violence was pretty much the only way to do that now.

“Ah, hell,” Brooks muttered as Mercer flew back and fell on his ass with a grunt.

He held a hand to his nose, looking more alert than he had in two months as he glared up at Colt and Brooks. “What the hell, man?” His voice was muffled as he tried to stop the bleeding.

“I believe this is called an intervention,” Colt said, stepping into the foyer, cringing at the stench. “God, it smells like old pizza and cow crap in here. Mary Grace would kick your ass if she saw you living like this.”

“Don’t say her name!” Mercer shoved to his feet, letting his hand drop. Blood dripped down his face as he snarled at Colt. His teeth were toothpaste commercial white against his dark brown skin. Right now he looked like a rabid wolf baring his teeth at them.

“I’ll say her name if I want.” Yeah, he knew he was being harsh, but this was what Mercer needed. He needed to feel something, to wake the hell up. And making Mercer angry was the only way Colt knew how. Because the guy sure wasn’t going to talk about his fucking feelings. He needed to get out of this rabbit hole he’d let himself fall into. “We all lost her. Every single one of us.”

Most days Colt couldn’t believe she was gone. They’d all grown up together, and in his case, he’d been friends with Mary Grace since they were five years old. She was like a sister to Colt. Hell, he was still holding on to the hope that she wasn’t actually gone. It was why he was about to get on a plane in two hours and see if the tip he’d received was right. But first he had to make sure one of his best friends didn’t do something stupid while he was gone.

“Mary Grace.”

“Ah, hell,” Brooks said again, clearly not going to intervene. Just muttering his standard curse.

“Fuck you,” Mercer snapped, taking a step toward Colt.

That was it. Get angry, he silently willed his childhood friend. Mercer needed anger to replace the grief. God, or at least mute it. Just for a week. That was all Colt needed. Because if Mary Grace was alive, he was bringing her home to his best friend. He just couldn’t give Mercer the hope she was alive. Because if he did and it turned out she wasn’t… It would destroy him. “Mary. Grace.”

Mercer rushed at him like a bull.

 

Review:

Oh, I really enjoyed this one!

Katie Reus is a new author to me–I’ve been meaning to read her for a while, and figured a brand new series (Redemption Harbor) would be a great place to start 🙂

It did not disappoint!

Resurrection introduces us to Colt, a CIA agent who has been somewhat estranged from his father but has made his own family by choice from a group of close friends, many of whom he’s known since childhood. He’s so tight with them all that Skye, his last partner who also became much more to him than a coworker, knew all of them by name even though she had to fake her own death before ever meeting them in person…and then risked it all to save one of them, for him.

Okay, I know that all sounds kind of complicated. But I promise it all makes sense the way Ms. Reus writes it–and is a heck of a lot of fun to read, too!

Colt and Skye have great chemistry together, and the back and forth between these two is fantastic as well. We meet all of the group members here–some of them more than others–but it’s enough to see that this is going to be a great series. We’re left with some really strong indicators about what’s coming for book two, and I for one can’t wait for its release!

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

About Katie Reus:

Katie Reus is the New York Times, USA Today, and IndieReader bestselling author of the Red Stone Security series, the Moon Shifter series and the Deadly Ops series. She fell in love with romance at a young age thanks to books she pilfered from her mom’s stash. Years later she loves reading romance almost as much as she loves writing it.

However, she didn’t always know she wanted to be a writer. After changing majors many times, she finally graduated summa cum laude with a degree in psychology. Not long after that she discovered a new love. Writing. She now spends her days writing dark paranormal romance and sexy romantic suspense. Her book Avenger’s Heat recently won the Georgia RWA Maggie Award for Excellence in the fantasy/paranormal category.

Connect with Katie:
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Release Day! PLANNING PENELOPE by Erin Lockwood

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

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

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

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

New Release and Giveaway! HOME TO STAY by Kate James (San Diego K-9 Unit #4)


On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Home to Stay
by Kate James
Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 312 pages
July 1st 2017 by Harlequin Heartwarming

She’s bringing his son home

A missing little boy triggers San Diego K-9 officer Shannon Clemens and her canine search-and-rescue partner into instant action. For the rookie cop haunted by a childhood tragedy, bringing Sawyer Evans’s son safely home is more than a job. It’s a mission she can’t fail… But forging a friendship with the father is a tactical error that could compromise her first solo assignment. Yet the deepening bond between them is almost impossible to resist…

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Excerpt:

There were no answers. None that made sense.

When Sawyer finished his beer, he went inside for another. This time he brought Rufus out with him. Rufus must’ve been well aware of his mood, since he was reluctant to go with him at first. A large Milk-Bone provided the needed incentive, but the dog still kept a reasonable distance between himself and Sawyer, curling up in the far corner of the deck to feast on his treat.

And now he was scaring their dog.

Sawyer rose and sat down next to Rufus. “It’s okay, big guy. My mood’s got nothing to do with you.” He leaned back against the wall, handed the dog another treat and scratched behind his ear.

With his free hand, Sawyer reached for the bottle again. He wasn’t someone who overindulged. The only times he’d been drunk in his life were at a frat party in university and the day after Jeannette had disappeared.

Tonight? Well, tonight might be the third time. How much worse could things get? Sawyer pushed off the deck and stalked to the edge of the patio, then back to the table. He lifted the silver frame he’d placed there earlier.

Jeannette was beautiful. She always had been. He’d remembered thinking she was the prettiest girl in school. But it was her heart, her compassion and decency that had truly captured him.

In the picture, she was wearing a sleek, white gown, with a lace overlay and a long flowing veil. She was gazing up at him and laughing. He remembered that heady summer day six years ago as if it was yesterday.

But looking at her picture now…he no longer felt that all-consuming love.

What if she was alive?

As he tried to picture marriage with Jeannette—past or future—he couldn’t seem to.

Shannon kept intruding on his thoughts.

And remorse seared through him.

When the doorbell rang, Rufus gave out a machine-gunfire series of barks, and the frame slipped out of Sawyer’s hand, smashing on the deck. “Great. Just great,” he mumbled.

Rufus barked again, and the instant Sawyer slid the patio door open, he raced to the front hall. Sawyer followed him. Opening the door and seeing Meghan standing there, he looked around anxiously.

“Hey, Rufus! How’s he doing?” his sister asked Sawyer, bending over to lavish the dog with attention.

“Can we talk about the dog later? Where’s Dylan?” Sawyer asked, panic threatening to paralyze him.

“He’s fine. I left him in my car for a moment,” she said, quick to reassure him. “Nice to see you, too,” she added and planted a kiss on his cheek.

“What are you doing here?” Sawyer demanded.

“Shannon called me.”

“What? Why?”

“She thought you shouldn’t be alone right now. But she didn’t say why. Let me bring Dylan in. We’ll get him settled in his room and then you can explain.”

Sawyer went to get Dylan from Meg’s car. Together, they got him ready for bed and left him in his room watching a show on Sawyer’s iPad, Rufus by his side. Sawyer closed his son’s bedroom door and trailed his sister down the hall. She knew her way around his kitchen and wasted no time pouring herself a glass of wine. She held the bottle toward him.

“No, thanks. I’ve got a beer going outside.” He followed Meg again as she headed to the patio.

“So, what’s got Shannon worried enough to look up my number and call me?” she asked, as she stood at the edge of the deck and leaned against the railing.

“Nothing.” Everything. But he didn’t think he had it in him to talk about it right then.

“Yeah?” she asked with a meaningful glance at the picture frame and shattered glass on the wooden planks.

Sawyer bent down, picked up the frame and shook off the shards of glass. He stared at the picture again. There was a long scratch down the center. How poetic that a piece of broken glass had scored the picture—directly between him and Jeannette. With a short, bitter laugh, he put it down on the table, slumped in a chair and finished off his beer.

Meg took a sip of her wine and set the glass on the table. She went back in and reemerged with a broom and dustpan. Without a word, she swept up the glass and emptied the dustpan into a garbage can in the corner of the deck.

She sat in a chair next to Sawyer and took another sip. “Now, do you want to try to convince me again that there’s nothing wrong?”

 

Other Books in the Series:

About the Author:

Kate spent much of her childhood abroad before attending university in Canada. She built a successful business career, but her passion has always been literature. As a result, Kate turned her energy to her love of the written word.

Kate’s goal is to entertain her readers with engaging stories featuring strong, likable characters. Kate has been honored with numerous awards for her writing. She and her husband, Ken, enjoy traveling and the outdoors, with their beloved Labrador Retrievers, Harley and Logan.

Kate would love to hear from you! You can connect with her by email, through her website, her Facebook pageTwitter, or mail at PO Box 446, Schomberg, ON, L0G 1T0, Canada.

Tour Giveaway

Prize Pack:
· A gorgeous aqua cross-body bag;
· “Dreamer Extraordinaire” charm bookmark;
· signed copy of When Love Matters Most, the second book in the San Diego K-9 Unit series);
· signed copy of When I Found You, the third book in the San Diego K-9 Unit series;
· an assortment of bookmarks and bookplates; and
· a $20 Amazon gift card.
· (US/CAN – if winner lives elsewhere, will receive ebooks & gift card instead)

Signed Books:
· Six winners who comment on any of the blog posts, will receive a signed book (US/CAN) of their choice from the first three books in the San Diego K-9 Unit series, When the Right One Comes Along, When Love Matters Most, or When I Found You.

Ends July 18th

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Tour Schedule:

July 8th: Launch
July 9th:
Heidi Reads…
Becky on Books
Thoughts of a Blonde
deal sharing aunt
With Love for Books
July 10th:
Katie’s Clean Book Collection
Hearts & Scribbles
Slice of Life
It’s All About the Romance
Mel’s Shelves
July 11th:
Rockin’ Book Reviews
underneath the covers
Getting Your Read On
Nicole’s Book Musings
Cafinated Reads
Christian Suspense Author Mary Alford
July 12th:
A Baker’s Perspective
Paulette’s Papers
Christy’s Cozy Corners
The Bookworm Chronicles
Remembrancy
Janice’s Book Reviews
July 13th:
Singing Librarian Books
I Am A Reader
Reading Is My SuperPower
Inside the Mind of an Avid Reader
Book Lover in Florida
Wishful Endings
July 14: Grand Finale

 

Grab Our Button!

New Release Review! FUEL FOR FIRE by Julie Ann Walker (Black Knights, Inc. #10)

Fuel for Fire
by Julie Ann Walker

 

Synopsis:

A brooding covert operative and a spunky CIA agent discover a burning passion in the next installment of Julie Ann Walker’s red-hot BKI series

Dagan Zoelner has made three huge mistakes
The first two left blood on his hands.
The third left him wondering…what if? What if he had told the woman of his dreams how he felt before his world fell apart?

Spitfire CIA agent Chelsea Duvall has always had a thing for bossy, brooding Dagan. It’s just as well that he’s never given her a second look, since she carries a combustible secret about his past that threatens to torch their lives…

 

“The heat between the hero and heroine is hotter than a firecracker lit on both ends… Readers are in for one hell of ride!” —RT Book Reviews for Hell for Leather 4½ Stars

 

Review:

I’ve had this series on my TBR for a while now–I loved Ms. Walker’s Deep Six series–and was beyond excited when I got a chance to read Fuel for Fire! I am happy to report that it definitely did not disappoint, and that even though this one’s pretty far into the series (#10! Whoa :)) I had no problem jumping right into the action with this one. There is previously-known bad guy at play here, but you are given enough information to understand the seriousness of the situation without going into info dump territory.

(And can I just say–that antagonist?–gives me chills.)

Chelsea and Dagan grabbed me from the very first page–I absolutely loved their back and forth when they were at odds…and their explosive chemistry when they weren’t as well. The danger they find themselves in, combined with the camaraderie they share with their fellow teammates and the others they bring in to help them get out of their current situation, make this one heck of a fun read. The story ends a bit in the air as far as Black Knights, Inc. are concerned–the president who commissioned them is leaving office, and his predecessor doesn’t have any interest in keeping them around–but I sincerely that Ms. Walker has plans for them anyway, because there’s at least two couples here who really, really deserve their own books 😉

Oh yeah, and a bad guy who may still be at large…

At least I’ve got a nine-book backlist to keep me busy while I wait!

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

View all my reviews

 

 

New Release Review and Giveaway! ROAMING WILD by Tracey Devlyn (Steele Ridge #6)

About the Book:

She’s loved him forever…
The last thing traveling nurse Evie Steele expects to find aboard the RV housing her mobile health clinic is her brother’s best friend. As always, Deke’s close proximity stirs her forbidden desires and long-suppressed dreams. But his sudden reappearance in her life and curious interest in her patients makes Evie wonder what he’s hiding.
…but now his secrets could destroy them both.
Special agent Deke Conrad is in big trouble. Not only does he have a thing for his friend’s little sister, but what should be a routine mission is turning into a tour of temptation and survival. He fooled himself into thinking he could keep the beautiful and dynamic Evie in the dark while he used the cover of her Med Mobile to track down a merciless wildlife trafficker. But he didn’t anticipate the lure of her scent or the warmth of her smile…or the string of dead bodies littering their path.
When Evie winds up in his enemy’s crosshairs, Deke must unleash every weapon in his arsenal to save her, including his heart. But will he be too late?
Purchase:Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Kobo

Add to Goodreads

Review:

An excellent addition to the series!

As with the other books, Roaming Wild could absolutely work as a standalone, since the main focus is on the primary couple, Evie and Deke, this time around. The other 5 Steele siblings all make appearances, though, and the nonstop suspense and drama of this installment are likely to inspire you to give the others a try, though–just sayin’. 😉

Deke and Evie are a great couple–solid chemistry, and they’ve known each other for years while Deke, her oldest brother’s best friend waited for/dreaded Evie’s growing up. He’s got some hangups–Evie’s so much younger, in addition to the whole younger sister of his best friend issue; and he’s ready for a family when she’s just starting a masters degree–on top of all of that, his (secret, real) job makes relationships difficult (though others in similar situations somehow manage–in his favor, he does realize the contradictions in his hangups even while sticking with them, so there is that).  There’s an excellent suspense story here too, in addition to the relationship one–and both combine to make a book it’s hard to put down. If you’ve read the other series books, you’ll love this one; if you haven’t yet, it’s a great place to start!

One more Steele sibling to go–can’t wait!

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

 

Meet the Author:

USA Today bestselling author Tracey Devlyn wanted to be the next Dian Fossey and explore the wilds of Africa, but that was before she met chemistry and calculus and realized a business major, rather than a science degree, might be more up her alley.Tracey writes contemporary and historical romantic suspense, historical mysteries, and mainstream thrillers. An Illinois native, Tracey spends her evenings harassing her once-in-a-lifetime husband and her weekends torturing her characters.

For more information on Tracey, including her Internet haunts, contest updates, and details on her upcoming novels, please visit her website at http://www.TraceyDevlyn.com. Want information about Tracey’s new releases to be delivered to your email inbox? Consider signing up for her newsletter http://traceydevlyn.com/contact. Tracey can also be found at http://Instagram.com/TraceyDevlyn, http://Twitter.com/TraceyDevlyn or http://www.Facebook.com/AuthorTraceyDevlyn.

 

Giveaway:

  • Fitbit Flex and Assorted Goodies – US shipping ONLY

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New Release Review and Giveaway! VIABLE THREAT by Julie Rowe (Outbreak Task Force #1)

About the Book:

Special Forces soldier and medic Walter River would give anything to snatch more than a few seconds of down time to see if he can rattle the no-nonsense and incredibly hot Dr. Lloyd he’s protecting, but dodging explosions, snipers, and student radicals who’ve unleashed a lethal bio-engineered microorganism have made that almost impossible. Maybe he’ll get a chance—if he can figure out how to keep them both alive.

CDC microbiologist Ava Lloyd races to find a cure for a bio-terrorism organism sweeping El Paso. The few stolen moments with her very hunky bodyguard River have been explosive, but no matter how alluring he is, she can’t afford to get distracted. The clock is ticking, people are dying by the hundreds, and once this crisis is solved, they’ll both be off on their next assignment, thousands of miles apart.

Purchase:Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | Kobo

Add to Goodreads
Excerpt:

She rested her head against the back of the seat and gave him a strange sort of sad smile. “You know what I’d like to do right now?”

He grunted and wagged his index finger. “That is a trick question.”

She laughed. “Yeah, I guess it is.”

He liked seeing the smile on her face. He liked seeing her face, period. “Tell me, Mouse, what would you like to do right now?”

She waved him closer, and he leaned toward her. She did it again, then put a hand on his shoulder and pulled herself up so she could whisper in his ear, “I’d like to take that respirator off you and kiss you, silly.”

She let go of him and resumed her previous position on the seat. He sat perfectly still. It took just about everything in him to not rip the mask off and grant her wish.

“I’m sorry,” she said, with as close to soundless as a voice could get. “I didn’t mean to make you feel uncomfortable.”

He looked at her and realized she thought he was embarrassed or some shit like that.

“I’m uncomfortable,” he murmured. “Because I’ve had a damned hard-on since I bandaged you up.” Her pupils widened, and her mouth dropped open. “When this is over, you can kiss any part of me you want for as long as you like, just as long as I can return the favor.”

“Oh,” she breathed out. When her tongue licked over her lips, he had to chain his hands to his sides to keep from grabbing her.

Though a blush heated her cheeks, tears filled her eyes until they spilled over and tracked down her face. “Chances are, that’s just a dream.”

It just about killed him to see her so sad. “Hey.” He couldn’t keep the growl out of his voice. “No Negative Nancys allowed on this trip.”

“I’ve got a headache, River. A fever can’t be far behind.”

“That happy bastard Henry is going to come up with some kind of magic potion that will kick this bug’s ass.”

“If that were possible, we’d know.”

“We’ve been so busy blowing shit up, we might not have been told.”

She slanted a disbelieving glance at him. “You just spoke with our boss. I think she would have mentioned any magic potions, if they’d been available.”

He ran his hands through his hair. “Could you work with me, Mouse? We’ve got a mass murderer to catch, and I need you ready and able to help reel in the son-of-a-bitch.”

“Ah, I see what you’re doing. Trying to put me in a good mood.”

“Jesus fuck, woman, you think I’d tell you how much I want you just to put you in a good mood?” He leaned down, grabbing the top of the seat on either side of her head. “Do I look like a motivational speaker?”

She studied him, her gaze flicking across his face and uniform. Covered in dirt, debris, and blood, he looked like a walking nightmare. “You look like a soldier on a mission.”

“That’s true, but not all of it.” He whispered, “I’ve got another mission. A personal one. You.”

Review:
Whoa–open up this book and hold on tight, because it’ll take you on one heck of a ride!

Seriously, Viable Threat is pretty much a disaster movie in book form–non-stop action. And the back-and-forth between Ava and River really added to the action-movie feel–their relationship was a whole lot of fun.

“Any idiot can go through life without making enemies,” River said cheerfully. “Congratulations. It takes character and intelligence to make people want to kill you.”

Truer words were never spoken, unless you count these:

“Just because a girl has an ugly cry doesn’t mean she isn’t busy plotting to kill you. In fact, if you’re the cause of the ugky cry, she probably is plotting to kill you.”

Okay, so that last one wasn’t actually directed at River, but at several points in the book, it certainly could have been!

I had so much fun reading this book–the characters, the non-stop action, the fact that I absolutely did not know who was behind it all until the characters figured it out–all good things. I can’t wait to see what the next book in the series brings!

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

 

Meet the Author:

Full-time author, freelance writer and workshop facilitator, Julie Rowe’s debut novel, Icebound, was released by Carina Press on Nov 14, 2011. Ten novels and eight anthologies have followed. Her most recent titles are the MEN OF ACTION boxed set and VIRAL JUSTICE book #3 of the Biological Response Team series. Julie’s articles and short stories have appeared in numerous magazines, such as Romantic Times Magazine, Today’s Parent magazine and Canadian Living. Julie facilitates business writing and communication workshops at Keyano College in her home city, and has presented writing workshops at conferences in the United States and Canada. She’s also a strong supporter of life long learning and moderates a free announcement loop for the promotion of online classes, workshops and webinars

Connect: Site | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

 

Giveaway:

  • $20 Amazon Gift Card

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