New Release Review and Giveaway! THROUGH YOUR EYES by Shannyn Schroeder (For Your Love #3)

One Last Chance…
 
THROUGH YOUR EYES
For Your Love #3
Shannyn Schroeder
Releasing May 30th, 2017
Zebra Shout

ONE LAST CHANCE

Deirdre Murphy has had her life planned for her since she was born: Work in her parents’ noisy pub in rural Ireland. Live with her family until she marries. Marry her childhood sweetheart ASAP, since he’s decided sexy fun time should wait for marriage. None of it excites her. But before her fate closes in, Deirdre’s got one last visit to her Chicago cousins—where she can spend her mornings in a peaceful bakery, keep to herself, and savor the space she needs…. Until she meets Tommy O’Malley.

Tommy is as tough as his city and twice as ready to welcome her in. He’s covered in tattoos, stays up half the night inking them on other people, and has a reputation for being good with his hands. And he’s heart-pounding, forgot-her-words, can’t-stop-staring exciting.

Tommy knows he’s the opposite of everything Deirdre has prepared for. But to watch her set herself free, he’s willing to risk almost anything…

He drove to the bakery and found a parking spot in front. It was near closing and the business was empty.

He walked through the door and a sweet scent filled the air. The place hadn’t changed much over the years. The fake cakes they had on display were different, changing with the times, showing popular themes, but the classics remained on a high shelf near the ceiling.

One of his earliest memories was coming here with his dad and Jimmy to pick out his birthday cake. His dad had hoisted him up on his shoulders and told him to pick any cake design he wanted. He couldn’t have been more than four or five. It wasn’t long after his mom had been killed, but the memory was such a happy one. He didn’t remember feeling sad.

That realization made him feel crappy.

No one came from the back, so he called out, “Hello? I’m here to pick up a cake.”

From the back room, with her head down, she came toward him.

“Cupcake,” he whispered.

She moved to the counter opposite him and turned her back to dig through a stack of order slips. Her reddish-brown hair trailed down her back in a ponytail. Without any greeting, she asked, “Name?”

“O’Malley.”

She spun with the pink slips in her hand. Her light blue eyes were wide, and the sprinkling of freckles across her nose reminded him how cute she was.

“You’re back,” he said.

Another cake for O’Malley?”

He lifted a shoulder. “There are five of us.”

“It’s good to know you’re not eating all this cake. I was beginning to think you had a wicked sweet tooth.”

“Uh, your cousin Moira told me you went back to Ireland.”

The papers in her hands crinkled, and a blush swept across her cheeks. “I did.”

“Are you staying long?”

“I’m not sure.” She focused on the slips, flipping through them, looking for his order.

When she found it, she pulled it from the stack and looked up. She waved it at him with a smile. “I’ll be right back.”

She disappeared to the back room, and Tommy sucked in a deep breath. This was it. He had another chance. All he had to do was open his mouth.

Why hadn’t Moira said anything? She knew he had a thing for her cousin. Maybe she was the one who’d put Jimmy up to making him get the cake. That definitely sounded like a Moira move. But to get Jimmy involved, that took skill. Moira was obviously better than he’d given her credit for.

Deirdre returned carrying a box. She slid it on the counter between them and lifted the lid. “Here you go.”

He barely glanced at it. No one would care if something was misspelled. His gaze locked on hers as she lowered the lid.

“Would you like to go out sometime?”

She stared for him so long, he began to wonder if he’d really spoken aloud.

“Uh . . . I have a boyfriend.”

“Oh.” The disappointment hit him hard. Again, he had to question why Moira wouldn’t tell him. This was the kind of pertinent information you gave a guy before he made a fool of himself.

“Your order is all paid for.” She nudged the box forward so he’d take the hint.

He scrambled for what to say to ease the tension. “Maybe you’d like to go out and do some sightseeing. As friends. You’re new to Chicago, and I could show you around.”

“Maybe.” Her eyes shifted away. It seemed no matter what he said, he made her nervous.

“Are staying with the O’Learys again?”

“Yes.”

“I’m right across the street. Stop by any time.”

She nodded and he took the cake from the counter. Not quite the answer he was looking for, but at least she hadn’t totally shot him down. She didn’t seem completely uninterested.

But boyfriend?

Through Your Eyes is a sweet romance; and I loved seeing Tommy finally get his HEA. The story could probably be read as a standalone, but be warned–both Tommy and Deirdre have large, extended families who show up here a lot (and they bring friends!) and even having already read the other two books in the For Your Love series I felt like I needed a cheat sheet at times to remember who everyone was and who was with whom. (I haven’t read the O’Leary’s series yet, though–that might have helped too.) On the other hand, being slightly confused by the family chaos definitely adds a sense of realism to the fiction, so…

In the end, though, the story is about Tommy and Deirdre, and it is an enjoyable one. I had liked Tommy from previous books, and that didn’t stop here. Deirdre’s a little harder to get to know, because she’s a private person who’s used to keeping things inside, but she was likable as well. Their story took a direction I really wasn’t expecting, even though I absolutely didn’t want her to go back to Ireland, and it took me a bit to come to terms with what they did, but in the end it ended up working out well.

So–another fun read from Ms. Schroeder! Hopefully I’ll be able to get back to the O’Learys series before she throws more at us from this universe 🙂

Rating: 4 stars / B+

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

Don’t miss the other FOR YOUR LOVE titles!

 


Shannyn 
Schroeder is the author of the O’Leary series, contemporary romances centered around a large Irish-American family in Chicago and the Hot & Nerdy series about 3 nerdy friends finding love. Her new series (For Your Love) released with the first title Under Your Skin. When she’s not wrangling her three kids or writing, she watches a ton of TV and loves to
bake cookies.
 

 

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Shannyn Schroeder, Author of UNDER YOUR SKIN, Tells Us Who’s Who in the FOR YOUR LOVE Series (With a New Release Review and Giveaway!)

 Blood Is Thicker Than Ink. . .

Who’s Who in the For Your Love series

By: Shannyn Schroeder

Under Your Skin is the first book in the For Your Love series. This series follows the O’Malley siblings. The O’Malleys first appeared as secondary characters in Catch Your Breath (O’Learys #4), where the oldest, Jimmy was the hero. Jimmy can be overbearing and a bit controlling, but that stems from him being responsible for all of his younger siblings. All of my books can be read as stand alones, so even if you haven’t read Catch Your Breath, you’ll be fine picking up Under Your Skin.

Under Your Skin features Norah O’Malley, the youngest sibling who came home to Chicago seven months pregnant. While she’s dealing with major life decisions, she falls for Kai Ellis, her brother Tommy’s boss.

The next book in the series is In Your Arms, which will release in December. This is Sean’s book. Sean is a live-and-let-live kind of guy, living for the moment. He meets Emma Long when her car breaks down. Emma is a potty-mouthed Kindergarten teacher looking to settle down. What they both decide is a last weekend of summer fling turns into love.

The third book is Through Your Eyes, which comes out next summer. Tommy is the hero of this book. Tommy is the youngest O’Malley son. He has always longed to have a typical family. When he meets Deirdre Murphy, an O’Leary cousin visiting from Ireland, he starts to envision building a life with her.

So far, I’m only under contract for the three books, but I hope to also write Kevin’s book. Kevin is the second oldest and he’s the jokester of the family. He’s the kind of guy who is rarely taken seriously. Looking back on his life, he realizes the mistakes he’s made and he wants to win back the one who got away—she just happens to be friends with Moira O’Leary, Jimmy’s fiancée, who can’t stand him.

Shannyn Schroeder is the author of the O’Leary series, contemporary romances centered around a large Irish-American family in Chicago and the Hot & Nerdy series about 3 nerdy friends finding love. Her new series (For Your Love) will release this summer with the first title Under Your Skin. When she’s not wrangling her three kids or writing, she watches a ton of TV and loves to bake cookies. Find out more at: www.ShannynSchroeder.com

 

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UNDER YOUR SKIN
For Your Love #1
Shannyn Schroeder
Releasing June 28th, 2016
Zebra Shout
Blood Is Thicker Than Ink. . .
Norah O’Malley has been alone for a long time. It’s been ten years since her father and four brothers shipped her off to be raised by her aunt. Seven months since she’s seen the guy who got her pregnant–who still doesn’t know. And it’s two weeks since she came home to Chicago and discovered none of her family wants to talk–or listen.
She never expected to walk into a tattoo shop seven months pregnant and get her socks knocked off by instant attraction. She can’t even see her socks. But Kai Ellis is big and gruff and sexy as hell, and if he has a past, well, so does she. Even more, Kai knows how to listen so that Norah feels just a little less alone . . .
All the chemistry in the world can’t help Norah make her decisions. And no sizzle of desire will make Kai believe in happy endings. But a little time with someone who understands might just change everything . ..
 
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Excerpt-Banner

Kai Ellis came from the back room to the musical sound of female laughter. The girl sitting across from Tommy at the front counter had an awesome rack spilling out of her tank top and her tits jiggled as she laughed.

“Hey,” he called, “I told you no girls while you’re on the clock. Get busy on your own time.”

Tommy dropped the food in his hand. “Gross, man. This is my sister.”

She wiggled her fingers. Then she pointed. To Tommy, she said, “Let’s ask your friend here, I’m sure he’s made mistakes in his life.”

“Boss.” Kai crossed his arms. He had no intention of answering questions about his mistakes, but it annoyed him that she jumped to the conclusion that he’d made them. Part of the reason for opening his own business was so he would never have to answer to anyone about his past again.

“Huh?”

“I’m his boss.”

She continued on as if he hadn’t spoken. “It’s normal for people to make mistakes, right? Even if they’re huge mistakes, you still learn from them. Life lessons and shit.”

He knew all about making life-altering mistakes, but he still wasn’t about to discuss them. Addressing Tommy, he said, “Girlfriend or not, she needs to go.”

Her eyes popped wide and she slid from the stool. Tommy laid a hand on her arm. “It’s fine.” He twisted on the stool. “Kai, this is my sister, Norah. She just moved back to town.”

Norah stepped around Tommy with her hand extended. Her belly stuck out full with a baby. He’d forgotten about Tommy bitching about his pregnant sister.

When he didn’t move, she dropped her hand. “Sorry. I thought I’d catch Tommy before his client came in. I brought him lunch and dessert.” She turned and picked up a plate from the counter. “Want a Rice Krispies Treat?”

Her smile was friendly as she spoke, but her light blue eyes filled with mischief. Like she was offering up more than marshmallows and cereal. It was a good thing that belly was between them. He stayed rooted to his spot. Then his phone rang. Again. He’d ignored Jaleesa all morning, but if he planned to get any work done, he’d have to deal with her.

With his phone in hand, he spun and walked back out the way he came. “Yeah.”

“It’s about time. I’ve been calling you all morning.”

“I’m aware.”

“Mom’s surgery went fine. She came through with flying colors.”

He’d figured as much. It was just her knee. “Good to know.”

“Are you coming to the hospital today?”

He walked until he hit the back door of the shop and stood in the alley. “I don’t know. Depends on how busy I get.”

“Kai, it’s not like this was some surprise. We scheduled it. You could make sure you’re free. You’re choosing not to.”

“And?”

His sister’s sigh whistled in his ear. “We need to talk about where Mom will go when she’s released from the hospital. She’ll only be here a few days.”

“I thought you were looking into a rehab facility.”

“I tried, but it made her upset. She thinks we’re going to dump her off and leave her for good.”

“So explain to her that’s not the case. She knows she won’t be able to get around your house. It’s not like she lost her mind.”

“She’s feeling vulnerable and she’s worried about being alone.”

“I don’t know what you want from me, Jaleesa.”

“Maybe she could stay with you.”

“I have stairs in my house.”

“Five, Kai. Five measly steps to get up to your door. Everything else is on one floor. You have the space.”

What she really meant was that he could make the space for his mom to move in. He didn’t want to. His house was set up exactly as he wanted. He would have to move all of his workout equipment somewhere, probably to the basement or the garage. He had no furniture for her. No bed or anything. He didn’t have guests and he liked it that way.

“I can’t take care of Mom. I don’t know what to do with her.”

“And I do? You figure it out, Kai. That’s what you do for family.”

“I have a business to run and I keep long hours.”

“At least think about it. We can probably hire someone to fill in when you’re not around so she’s not alone, but she’ll feel secure in your house.”

“Why can’t we hire someone to help at your house?”

“Stairs.”

“Maybe we can convert some space to make it work.”

“My whole family isn’t losing our living room so you don’t have to man up.”

He shook his head, not wanting to lose this argument. “We’ll talk about this later. I have to go.”

“Try to stop by the hospital. It’ll make her happy.”

“Yeah.” He clicked off and stared at the brick building across from him. He was tempted to throw his phone to hear the satisfying crack of plastic against the wall. Instead, he inhaled deeply and closed his eyes. The air he sucked in was rank with the smell of rotting garbage. Tomorrow was pickup day and the heat did no favors for the Chinese restaurant on the corner.

The sun beat against his skin, searing it. Five minutes of quiet without thinking about his mom at the hospital. Anything was better than the damn hospital. Leaning against the back door, with his eyes closed, he allowed the sun to sink into him.

The door thumped against him and he stepped away. So much for his five minutes.

Review-Banner

Though I wasn’t always sold on the romance of this story (she’s eight months pregnant at the beginning, and he’s pretty much a jerk for a good 1/3 of the book at least), I loved the family aspect of it. Norah’s returned home to her dad and four brothers, and though they can all be more than a little overbearing at times, I loved the back-and-forth between them all. I don’t blame her at all for getting exasperated and aggravated with them all at times, but they were there for her when she needed them (eventually, at least) and that made them awesome.

Come to think of it, Kai’s relationships with his mom and sister were pretty good too. He did have that in his favor–though he was kind of an a$$ to them too at times. He gets better, at least.

Ms. Schroeder definitely went a different direction with her heroine on this one–I wasn’t too sure at first what to think of Norah, who’s only got about a month left in her pregnancy before she finally 1) tells the baby’s father or 2) actually makes a plan for what she’s going to do about her situation. Talk about denial! I really respected Noarah’s choice, though, and the way she stuck to it despite all the men she had getting in her face and trying to make her decide differently. She really did go with what would be best for the baby, and the fact that Kai was the only guy in her life that was behind that decision 100% definitely brought him up several notches in my estimation.

Fortunately, Norah and Kai’s relationship grew from there, and Kai gradually became a lot less of a jerk in the process. By the end when he’s managed to de-compartmentalize his life in an effort to make himself more worthy of Norah, I was in his corner 100%. I’ll enjoy seeing the two of them together as Norah’s brothers (except Jimmy, whose story–Catch Your Breath –was in another series and which I’m going to have read soon) get their own stories as the series continues.

Rating: 4 stars / B+

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

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New Release and Giveaway! HIS WORK OF ART by Shannyn Shroeder (Hot & Nerdy #4)

Hot AND nerdy? Genius! I am SO there! 🙂

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Title: His Work of Art
Author: Shannyn Schroeder
Series: Hot & Nerdy (#4)
Release: 10/27/15
Publisher: Kensington
Word count: 35,000 (novella length)
Format: digital
Heat level: spicy (r-rated)

 

Book Blurb:

Reese Carter is definitely not your average college girl. She’d prefer to spend Saturday nights playing Hero’s Crusade than attending a wild frat party on campus. When she bands together with Adam, fellow comic enthusiast and illustrator, it appears that Reese has formed a dream team sure to propel her writing into the comic hall of fame.

Adam Hayes has never met a girl like Reese. She’s sassy, smart, and loves talking comics, although he can’t see why she’d choose DC over Marvel. He’s thrilled to finally put his artistic chops to use in their upcoming comic project. But this relationship is strictly professional. Or so he tells himself. When the two combine forces, they churn out magic in more ways than they had planned; they never expected to develop a steamy romantic sub-plot of their own…

 

Excerpt:

“Wow! You’re actually good.”

Adam glanced over his shoulder at hearing Reese—words of surprise no guy ever wanted to hear—to see that she stood over his drawing table. Invading his space behind the counter. He thanked the customer in front of him and handed him his bag of comic books. He watched the customer leave before walking up behind Reese.

“Could you—” He gestured to the other side of the counter, the storefront for customers.

She shrugged. “Oh, sorry.” She moved to the other side, but continued talking. “It’s just that I see you drawing all the time. I wanted to check it out.”

Adam moved his panels and sheets of paper back to the order in which he had them. Even if he were to invite her to look at his work, he wouldn’t let her shuffle them like a deck of cards. Although she was now standing six feet away, he could still smell her lingering scent. Something soft, but he couldn’t quite place it. He found it distracting.

While he continued to straighten his table, he asked, “Is there something you needed help finding?”

It was a ridiculous question because she was able to find things in the small store as easily as he could. She’d been coming in at least once a week for months, ever since one of their competitors had shut down. Reese had strolled in looking for the latest Batgirl comic and his life hadn’t been the same since.

“So what are you drawing?”

“Nothing special. Just working up some ideas.”

“Those aren’t random doodles. I know a superhero when I see one. Who is he?”

Adam set his papers back on the desk. He rubbed the back of his neck, irritation grinding into his muscles. “He doesn’t have a name. Not yet anyway.”

“He’s pretty awesome. You need to name him.”

“Yeah, I’ll get right on that.” As if he hadn’t already spent his entire afternoon doing just that. He crossed his arms. “So what are you here for today? You picked up all of your regular issues earlier this week.”

“I came to see you.” She leaned forward on the counter in front of the register. “I have a proposition for you.”

At least these were better words to hear than her first statement. He joined her and braced his palms on the glass and waited.

“I have to do a senior project. My plan is to publish an anthology of comics.”

They’d talked about comics plenty over the months. They both had strong opinions, and he enjoyed arguing with her. He also knew that she was a writer, not that he’d ever read any of her stuff.

“And?” he prompted.

“I need an artist. I have most of the stories done.” She tilted her head side to side, her straight dark hair swaying with the movement. Squinting her eyes, she said, “Well, they need polishing and maybe some revising, but I figure they’ll get fine-tuned as we get to the storyboard phase.”

“We?” No way was she asking what he thought.

“If you agree to be my partner, yeah, we. I’m under a bit of a time crunch because I have to have things in place to start my crowd-funding campaign. So it’ll be a lot of work, but you’ll get paid. At least you will if the campaign gets funded. Plus, I figure we have holiday break coming up so we won’t have to worry about classes.”

“You want me to illustrate your comics?” The thought was a massive blur in his brain. Working together on a comic was intense. He doubted they could get along long enough to complete anything. They managed to argue about just about everything related to comics.

“Yeah. I had the idea a couple of weeks ago when I saw you working at your table. You were so passionate and into it, that it swallowed you. I get like that when I’m in the zone writing. I need that kind of partner.” Her stormy blue eyes focused intently on him from beneath her shaggy bangs.

“Do I really need to point out that we don’t get along?”

In truth, Reese was one of his all-time favorite customers. She was smart and argued with passion. It was almost enough for him to forgive her for choosing DC over Marvel.

“Who said we have to get along? I’m an excellent writer. From what I can see there, you’re an excellent artist. Together, we can put together a fabulous book. “ She leaned closer, almost to his side of the counter. “Afraid you can’t handle me?”

He chuckled. “Sorry to disappoint, but you don’t scare me. However, I don’t like to waste my time.”

She eased back. “How about this? You can read the story for the first book. Then make your decision. But it’ll have to be fast because I have to have everything in place before my campaign goes live. The book doesn’t need to be complete, but I have to have enough to entice people to back me.”

The idea intrigued him, but Reese would never have been his first choice for a partner. Getting paid to draw was exactly what he was looking for. And if her campaign got fully funded, he would have a publication credit to his name. Having experience like that would help as he started his job hunt after graduation. “Bring it by. I’ll take a look.”

Her face lit up almost as brightly as when she’d tried to convince him that Batman was better than Iron Man. “Excellent.” She reached into her messenger bag and pulled out a purple folder. “Here you go.”

He eyed the folder. “You were that sure that I’d say yes?”

She winked at him. “I was cautiously optimistic.”

HisWorkofArt

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Bio:Shannyn

Shannyn Schroeder is the author of the O’Leary series, contemporary romances centered around a large Irish-American family in Chicago and the new Hot & Nerdy series about 3 nerdy friends and their last spring break. When she’s not wrangling her three kids or writing, she watches a ton of TV and loves to bake cookies.

Author contact:

Web site — http://www.shannynschroeder.com

Goodreads — https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6575201.Shannyn_Schroeder

Twitter — https://twitter.com/SSchroeder_

Facebook — https://www.facebook.com/shannyn.schroeder

 
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