November 14, 2017

RELEASE DAY REVIEW: At Your Service (Masters & Mercenaries #14.5)



At Your Service (Masters & Mercenaries #14.5), by Lexi Blake
Publish Date:
November 14, 2017
Publisher: DLZ Entertainment
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: adult contemporary suspense romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4.5 STARS


(Synopsis) Juliana O’Neil’s promising future was burned away in the heat of battle. She had been an officer with a bright future in the military, but now she is struggling to survive. Her husband gone and her career in shambles, she finds a job at Top as a hostess and tries to put together the pieces of her life. The last thing she needs is any kind of male attention, but she can’t help but be amused at her neighbor and coworker’s lothario antics. Not that she would have anything to do with him, at least not for more than one night. 


Javier Leones doesn’t understand monogamy. No woman could ever be enough for his endless libido, but he has to admit Juliana has his attention. For reasons he doesn’t fully understand, he can’t seem to get the gorgeous redhead with the sad eyes out of his head. After one scorching night together, he realizes he’ll never be able to get her out of his system. But with his reputation, he fears she’ll never see him as more than a one-night stand.

When their passions collide, these new lovers will be forced to confront Juliana’s past and come to terms with Javier’s present. Will they find their way or will this reservation be canceled at the last minute?

Sweet, talented, manwhore Javier has been on the periphery of the McKay Taggart clan for awhile now. He's Sean Taggart's right hand chef at Top and a new Master at Sanctum. But, recent events have him wanting to become a one-woman man. Only problem is, you spend so long bouncing from one casual fling to the next, and it's hard to find anyone to take you seriously. 

And then there's Juliana. Once upon a time she had it all, and then she joined the military and lost her hand. Now, she is divorced, alienated from the only family she has and unable to do the one thing she loves the most. 

I think Javier's fall from womanizerdom came from a few places. He's seen three of his besties at Top fall in love in recent months, and he gets to see the great relationship that Sean and Grace have all the time. Javier is ready for his turn to find a woman to share his happiness and his burdens with. And taking care of his brother is a new and frustrating burden in his life. 

It was so nice to witness Javier in a vulnerable position for a change. He's always been so confident and charming every other time we've seen him. But, watching his older brother hit rock bottom and realizing he's missing out on a meaningful relationship has turned him into this contemplative guy that's a little out of character. I really liked it on him, though. His vulnerability goes through the roof when he sets his sights on his neighbor Juliana and she tries to turn him into a one-night stand.

Seeing the tables turn on Javier was fun for a minute, but it quickly became pretty frustrating. It was clear he was serious about Juliana and wanted her to take him seriously too, and when she didn't, I felt really badly for Javier and really angry at this girl who was obviously making a huge mistake. 

As Javier and Juliana navigate the choppy relationship waters, we still get some time in with some of our favorite MT and Top couples. And, of course, there's a play party or two that happen. 

Topped is such a fun spin-off addition to the MT world. I love that these relationships happen amid the backdrop of a working restaurant. It doesn't hold the same intrigue, suspense and danger as the M&M series, but there's enough of it to let you know that you're still in the same world. And, of course, the sexy times don't quit. Lexi Blake is so, SO good at writing about relationships with big hurdles, so when the couples overcome them, it's incredibly satisfying. 

November 10, 2017

COVER REVEAL: Miss Mechanic


Have you seen the cover of Emma Hart's upcoming novel MISS MECHANIC? It's SO perfect!


Miss Mechanic, by Emma Hart
Publish Date:
December 12, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

(Synopsis) Two mechanics. One rivalry.

She’ll prove she’s as good as she says she is.

He’ll prove her place isn’t under the hood.

It’s over it.

“Don’t let the bastards get you down.”

For twenty-six years, I lived by my daddy’s motto. Which is why “Mechanic Wanted” is all it takes for me to apply for the job at the garage we once owned.

And I meet the biggest bastard of them all.

Dexter Ryne. Hotter than Hell in July and a firm believer that my place is on reception, taking phone calls and looking pretty. Not getting dirty under the hood of a car.

Determined to prove each other wrong, we make a deal.

I have three weeks to prove my worth as a mechanic. If I don’t, I’m on telephone duty.

If I do, he’ll accept defeat and make my job permanent.

Now, all I have to do is fight my attraction to the cocky little… beep.

Problem is, an engine isn’t the only thing he knows how to make purr…


October 31, 2017

RELEASE DAY BLITZ: Miss Fix-it

Miss Fix-it is here!

Miss Fix-it, by Emma Hart
Publish Date:
October 31, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

(Synopsis) One handywoman.

One single dad.

One set of twins.

And the wall isn’t the only thing being drilled…

I learned the hard way that being a handywoman isn’t easy. The questions, the stares—the assumption I’m the proud owner of a cock and balls. Not that it matters. I’ve proven over and over that I’m ready for anything the judgmental asses throw at me.

Except the hot, single dad of twins who just moved to town.

Brantley Cooper gets the shock of his life when I show up on his doorstep to fix up his kids’ new rooms. His son is confused why ‘the pretty lady has a drill,’ and his daughter has a new obsession—me.

On paper, my job is easy. Go in, do their bedrooms, and leave.

In theory, I’m spending eight hours a day with a guarded, sexy as hell guy, and I’m staying for dinner more often than I’m eating it alone, on my couch, with Friends re-runs.

I shouldn’t be staying for dinner. I shouldn’t be helping him out with the twins. I shouldn’t be falling in love with tiny toes and dimpled cheeks.

And I most definitely should not be kissing my client.

Oops…
“I swear, messing with me is your new favorite hobby.”

“It is,” he admitted, eyes sparkling. “You’re so easy to mess with, I don’t even have to try.”

I rolled my eyes. “And to think—I let myself be guilt-tripped into this.”

“More fool you. I warned you about her, and you obviously didn’t listen.”

“That’s so not fair. I did listen, I just don’t have freaky skills to avoid the guilt like you do.”

“I don’t avoid the guilt. I pretend.”

“Would you have pretended if you were me, knowing you’d leave a poor guy to be lonely?”

He raised his eyebrows. “I wouldn’t have been lonely. I’d have watched TV with my pants off.”

“You don’t get to use my plans as an excuse,” I scoffed. “And unless your daughter is a master manipulator, you would have been lonely.”

“She’s four. All four-year-olds are master manipulators. If kids came with manuals, that would be the title of the chapter that talks about age four,” he said.

“There are technically manuals. They’re these wonderful, futuristic things called books.”

“None of which are geared toward a single dad,” he pointed out. “The last time I Googled something, I diagnosed Eli with a rare, deadly disease, learned that there are way too many styles of braid for any human being to master, and also found out how to get the kids out of the door by eight and have time to do my make-up.”

I paused. “I can see how that last one would be of use to you. Your mascara looks wonderful today.”
By day, New York Times and USA Today bestselling New Adult author Emma Hart dons a cape and calls herself Super Mum to two beautiful little monsters. By night, she drops the cape, pours a glass of whatever she fancies—usually wine—and writes books.

Emma is working on Top Secret projects she will share with her followers and fans at every available opportunity. Naturally, all Top Secret projects involve a dashingly hot guy who likes to forget to wear a shirt, a sprinkling (or several) of hold-onto-your-panties hot scenes, and a whole lotta love.

She likes to be busy—unless busy involves doing the dishes, but that seems to be when all the ideas come to life.

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October 10, 2017

RELEASE DAY REVIEW: Sure Thing


Sure Thing, by Jana Aston
Publish Date:
October 10, 2017
Publisher: Rutherford Press
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4.5 STARS


(Synopsis) Have you ever set out to have a one night stand with a sexy stranger? 
No? I’m the only one?Just kidding, I would never.
Ever. Not usually.

But then I figured, why not? My entire life I’ve been good and it’s gotten me nowhere. No job.
No apartment.
No boyfriend.

I’m owed a little fun, aren’t I? A reward for being good.Sure, a new pair of shoes would be more appropriate, but Mr. Sexy Stranger is more appealing. And when he speaks—in that British accent—it’s a done deal. Every American woman has a hot British guy fantasy. Well, most do. I haven't taken a poll or anything, but I’m pretty sure it’s a fact.

Except…
You know that saying about best-laid plans?
Good, because I don’t either, but I assume they go awry.Like my one night stand…

I've read everything Jana Aston has put out there, and if I've learned one thing about her, it's that she's got the cute awkward girl down PAT. But, she's also nailed the hot, rich, confident guy who gets to bring her out of her shell, so that's a win for all of us. 

Jana has written a lot of awkward girls, but I think Violet might win the prize. She's a girl who has a great degree and a good job until the day she was downsized. Now she has nothing but the love and couch of her extroverted twin sister Daisy. In a very grownup version of the twin switch, Violet takes Daisy's place as a tour guide on a week-long bus tour... and discovers her one-night stand who was supposed to remain a ONE NIGHT stand is one of her charges. 

And cue the awkward. 

And trust me - there's a ton of awkward. Which makes for a completely and utterly enjoyable read for me. Sadly, Violet's pain is definitely my gain. She tries so hard to keep Jennings at arms length, but the sexual tension between them is very real. She's kinda stuck in a big lie with this guy that she really likes, but doesn't want to like, and she can't escape for a week. 

Jennings is fascinated by this girl with secrets. She's strange and awkward and pretty and he had the most amazing night of his life with her. Now he just has to convince her that maybe he doesn't have to be a one-night stand. He's very persuasive, too. I mean, all he has to do is open his mouth and say anything. Violet has a thing for British accents (don't we all?). 

If you like rom-coms, you need to pick up Sure Thing. Violet's love of all things British and her efforts at using quintessential British words and phrases (which backfire almost always) are hilarious. The "com" is definitely there, but so is the "rom." Jennings and Violet are great together. They're complete opposites in so many ways, but their sexy times is off the charts hot and the affection that grows between them with each chapter will make you swoon. 

I'm hoping Jana will write a book about Daisy now, because this sister also has some secrets that I assumed we would discover in Sure Thing. We didn't, however, so now I want to know where Daisy was while Violet was leading her tour. Hopefully that story is coming up sooner rather than later. 

September 28, 2017

BLOG TOUR REVIEW, EXCERPT & GIVEAWAY: Mine For The Week (Wild Love #2)




Mine For the Week (Wild Love #2), by Erika Kelly
Publish Date:
October 3, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and Inkslinger PR
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4 STARS


(Synopsis) From the award-winning author of MINE FOR NOW comes the next sizzling story in her Wild Love series, about a chance meeting that changes the course of two people’s lives.

As the top collegiate shortstop in the country, Ryan O’Donnell’s life is about discipline. But a growing restlessness causes him to bail on his baseball team over spring break to join his buddies at a singles resort. He just needs one week to escape his life, and then he’ll get back on track. But moments after arriving he meets HER, and the world as he knows it changes irrevocably. It should only be a hookup—that’s what spring break’s all about—but one taste of this sexy, vibrant woman isn’t enough. He has to have her. Even if it’s only for a week.

Sophie Valentine—yes, that Valentine—just found out her siblings want to sell off Crazy Hearts—the Peeps of the Valentine’s Day world. Upset, she takes off with her friends on their spring break vacation. She only wanted an escape—she never imagined meeting HIM. But he’s about to start a Major League Baseball career, and she’s launching a fight for her family legacy. They have no future. It’s just…she’s never felt this way for anyone before.

Are they really going to walk away from this kind of connection…this passion?

I feel like I've been waiting forever for the second book in Erika Kelly's Wild Love series, and I'm so glad it's finally here. Ryan was the strong, silent type in book 1, so it was great to get a glimpse inside his head to see why. 

Ryan and Sophie found each other at the perfect moment in their lives. They were both under extreme amounts of pressure and needed a break from it badly. Sophie's siblings are pressuring her to sell off a part of her family's company, and she can't bring herself to agree with that decision. Ryan is on the cusp of baseball greatness and he's just not sure if it's absolutely what he wants to do with the next 10 years of his life, despite being strongly encouraged to stay the course by everyone in his life.

These two meet while on spring break in a tropical location and sparks fly. But, it's a bad time for a new relationship for both of them, and neither of them are the casual hook-up type. Despite that, they have a hard time staying away from each other. And Ryan and Sophie have great chemistry when their lives weren't invading their vacation time, so I was all for them giving in to their baser urges. 

Unlike in most books, these two were prone to talk a lot. There was a lot of communicating going on - at times, it almost felt like too much. Or, rather, I think my problem was with the fact that their conversations were repeated several times with several people. Sophie calls her older sister three or four times, and every single time Sophie tells her she doesn't want to sell part of their family's company. Her sister proceeds to treat Sophie like crap while blaming it on being tired because of just having a baby. Nothing gets resolved.

Sophie repeatedly tells Ryan he has to stop bottling up his thoughts and feelings. He needs to stop being so agreeable and do what he wants. Believe me - it was good advice, even though every time she told him, he humored her for a while, and then blew her off. And Ryan has several convos with both his dad and his coach where they ask him to come home, and he tells them no. Ryan didn't seem to know what he wanted, but he kept calling them to tell them as much.

The times when Ryan and Sophie weren't talking were some of my favorites. They really were great together. And when they weren't internalizing all their troubles or being angry at each other (well, Sophie was mad at Ryan a lot - he was mad at himself a lot), their banter was snarky and cute.

Despite the repetitive dialog, I really did like this book a lot. It was great getting to know where Ryan was coming from and how the situation with his mother and father affected him. It was a completely different experience from his sister, whom we met in book 1. Incidentally, it was also awesome to catch up with her and Dylan at the end of the book. I'm really looking forward to reading Brandon's book next. 
“What’re you thinking about?” she asked.

His attention remained focused on the road. “I’m not.”

“You’re not thinking?”

“Nope.”

“Who doesn’t think? You’re driving along, but you’re not thinking?”

“Nope. I’m just enjoying being with you.”

Warmth flooded her. She looked away from him, letting it spread through her, thick and sweet as caramel. He’d seemed at peace when they’d first started out and she’d told him about the island, the superstitions. She’d even told him about her conversation with her sister. He’d gotten angry at Abby’s attitude, and she’d appreciated his support.

Up ahead she noticed a stand of trees. “Here we go. It’s getting more wooded. We’re close.” She read the information she’d printed out. “Pretty soon we’re going to see a big rock with some graffiti on it, and then we enter a forest.” She leaned into him, their arms brushing, as she reached for the control panel.

“What’re you doing?”

“Resetting the odometer.” She looked for the button. “The path’s exactly two point four miles from the rock.”

He batted her hand away, leaned forward, and hit the button.

“Awesome. I can’t wait.” She gestured to his lap. “You can go in your shorts.”

“That’s okay.”

“Oh, you have to go in. The water has magical properties.”

“So you said.”

“You don’t believe in it?”

He shrugged. “I believe telling people water has magical properties is a great way to get tourists to come out here and spend money. Do they sell it in bottles in roadside kiosks?”

“Well, hello to the itty bitty cynic who lives inside you. Does he come out often? I don’t think I’ve met him before.”

He slowly leveled her a look that said he wasn’t amused.

So she met his with one of her own. “This isn’t a tourist attraction. The islanders actually believe in it.”

“And a tourist guide book told you that?”

“I didn’t buy a tourist guide book.”

“You learned it from an islander?”

“I got it from the Internet.”

And then that serious face blew wide open with laughter. “Okay then.” And that right there was the man she’d fallen for.

And, yep, no doubt about it. She’d fallen for this complicated, moody, sexy man. “You can fester in your cynicism. I choose to believe in magical properties.”

“And what do you hope to get from the magic?”

She quickly turned away from him. “I don’t know.”

“Wait, did you just blush? Are you…embarrassed?”

“Just drive the freaking car. I’m not embarrassed.”

He took his foot off the accelerator, shifting gears. “Not until you tell me what you want the magic for.”

She shoved his thigh. “God, Ryan. I want to eat whatever I want and not gain weight. I want to meet the man of my dreams and drive off into the sunset in a convertible. I want to find my passion and earn a living out of it. What does anyone want?”

And from his very intense expression she had a strong feeling he wanted her.

Award-winning author Erika Kelly has been spinning romantic tales all her life--she just didn't know it. Raised on the classics, she didn't discover romantic fiction until later in life. From that moment on, she's been devouring the genre and has found her true voice as an author. Over three decades she's written poems, screenplays, plays, short stories, and all kinds of women's fiction novels. Married to the love of her life and raising four children, she's lived in two countries and seven states, but give her pen and paper, a stack of good books, and a steaming mug of vanilla chai latte and she can make her home anywhere.

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September 26, 2017

BLOG TOUR REVIEW & EXCERPT: Stud Finder


Lauren Blakely's newest addition to the 1001 Dark Nights collection was the perfect bite-sized fairy tale. Check out my review and an excerpt...

Stud Finder, by Lauren Blakely
Publish Date:
September 26, 2017
Publisher: Evil Eye Concepts, Inc.
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and Inkslinger PR
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon

Rating: 5 STARS


(Synopsis) Man seeking woman: Hot, rich, smart, witty, self-made multimillionaire Internet genius seeks classy, intelligent, sexy, fun-loving woman who’s interested in settling down and sharing all the good things.


There. Best. Ad. Ever.


I will absolutely find the woman of my dreams, someone who’ll love me for me. Even if my sister thinks I need help dating, I’m confident I can pull this off, courtesy of the great worldwide web.

Let me just hit the upload button right now...


***


No. Just no. As a woman and a professional matchmaker, I can’t let Dylan Parker run this ad. He’s the catch of all catches. That’s why his sister has asked me to help her ridiculously good-looking, insanely rich, but socially clueless brother find a woman. As a broker of happily ever afters, I’m known as the Stud Finder since I make a great living pairing wildly successful women with men who won’t fleece them but will adore them. After all, what woman in her right mind wouldn’t fall in love with Dylan?


I mean, besides me. It totally won’t be me.

Stud Finder was the perfect way to spend a lazy weekend afternoon. It allowed me to return to this Big Rock world that Lauren Blakely has created, if only for a short while. The story went by pretty quickly (it IS a novella, after all), but the humor, heat and heart that I've come to expect from Lauren Blakely was still there. 

Dylan is the most adorable rich nerd. He's this tech genius who has made millions and is now looking to find someone to share it with. This guy is not your typical guy. He's actually looking for a commitment - a wife even. But, wading through the gold diggers is more than he can handle. So, his sister enlists the help of her BFF - the so-called "Stud-Finder." 

Evie has made a living out of being a professional matchmaker. Although she usually works with women, she's willing to do a favor for her best friend and try and match Dylan up with the perfect woman. Shouldn't be hard since he's rich, nice, funny AND totally hot. Evie is in denial from the very beginning - it's adorable. She tells herself all the right things - I don't want a relationship. He's my BFF's brother. He's a client. But, when it's right, it's right. And Dylan and Evie are RIGHT. 

Theirs is a slow, sweet burn. Although Evie and Dylan know each other when he hires her, it's only peripherally. As Evie gathers details about Dylan so that she can match him with the perfect woman, they both have the chance to get to know each other without all the usual pressure. 

Stud Finder was a sweet and sexy addition to the awesome Lauren Blakely line-up. 
What am I doing?

Dylan is my client’s brother.

Dylan is now my client.

I’m not interested in a match for myself. I’m not looking for love. I’m focused on work, and Dylan is my work.

The trouble is, my work turns me on more than I expected, and that’s for one elemental reason—I like him.

I like him so very much.

That’s why I jerk this conversation back to the purpose of these get-togethers—prepping him for his princess charming, whoever she may be.

I brush one palm against the other. “The big question is—are you ready for me to set you up on your first date? Or do you think the fall in yoga has set you back?” I wink.

“You think falling in yoga means I’m not ready to date?”

I laugh. Nervously. “Well, not entirely. But it did remind me what we talked about before we had tea. That we all have a bit of dork in us. So, I didn’t know if you wanted to walk through all the potential topics, moments, pitfalls, and so on.”

“Like a pre-date prep? Or maybe even a practice session?”

“Sure, we can practice now if you’d like,” I offer.

He doesn't answer right away. When he does, he takes his time, like he’s making an offer. “Or maybe we can practice in a true date simulation.”

Tingles race over my shoulders. “Like a practice date?”

His eyes twinkle like stars. “I need a practice date badly. Can I take you on one? It would be so helpful to review everything. Make sure I’m ready.”

When he puts it like that… “Yes, of course.”

I want him to put his best foot forward. I didn’t say yes because I want to date him. I wouldn’t do that, even though when he walks away, all I can think is how on earth did I wind up with a pitter-pattering heart for a man I’m handing off to another woman?

A #1 New York Times Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that's hot, sweet and sexy. She lives in California with her family and has plotted entire novels while walking her dogs. With fourteen New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than eighty times, and she's sold more than 2 million books. In October she'll release HARD WOOD, a sexy, standalone romantic comedy. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter! laurenblakely.com/newsletter

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September 12, 2017

BLOG TOUR REVIEW: Lust (Vegas Nights #2)



Lust (Vegas Nights #2), by Emma Hart
Publish Date:
September 12, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and Inkslinger PR
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS


(Synopsis) Detective Adrian Potter had a lot to answer for. I didn’t care that he was tasked with shutting down the city’s most prolific hookers.

I cared that he was stopping me from providing for my daughter.

He didn’t care.

Not at all.

Until I broke down in the backseat of his car… And he let me go.

Adrian was a single parent, too. He knew how hard I had it. At least, he thought he did.

He had a job. He had people who cared. He didn’t know just how lucky he was.

My name is Perrie Fox.

I was a whore of the highest value.

Until Detective Adrian Potter.

Until the tattooed, redemption-seeking detective entered my life, looking for his fairytale.

The cop and the hooker.

Happily ever fucking never.

You’ve met one Fox sibling.

Now meet the other…

I love Emma Hart’s writing. Usually, her stories are laugh-out-loud funny, super sexy and so freaking romantic. Lust is one of the more serious books of hers that I’ve read. It’s still sexy and romantic, but in place of a lot of that trademark snark is a huge depth of emotion. Perrie has not had things easy in the least, and that comes through.

A lot of the necessary comic relief comes in the form of Perrie’s very sassy seven-year-old daughter Lola. I can’t imagine Perrie’s life - that she’s part of one of the wealthiest families in Las Vegas, but because of her horrible adoptive father, she was shunned and can’t access any of the money that is rightfully hers. Like any other mother, she does what she has to do to keep a roof over their head and food in their bellies. But, you can tell, it is slowly killing her soul.

I think her getting caught trying to turn a trick on Adrian was the best thing that ever happened to her. He ends up enlisting her help in rounding up other prostitutes in exchange for a legit paycheck and some self-respect back. And, Adrian ends up having to admit that, despite her chosen profession, Perrie is a pretty awesome woman. It also doesn’t hurt that her daughter and Adrian’s eight-year-old son become fast BFFs.

Lust backs up the established timeline a bit. We actually met Perrie briefly toward the end of Sin (Vegas Nights #1) when Dahlia meets with her about reuniting with Perrie’s estranged brother and then Dahlia offers her a job tending bar at The Scarlet Letter. Lust gives us the chance to witness the events leading up to that meeting. So, we know where Perrie’s frame of mind is when she gets to that meeting. And it came at a really great time.

We also get to move on from that moment in time and see what happens later. The reunion between Perrie and her brother Damien that happened off camera in Sin is now front and center in Lust. We also get to see where Damien and Dahlia are in their relationship.

But, obviously, the relationship that takes center stage here is the one between Perrie and Adrian. The cop and the hooker. But, neither of them can be defined by just those titles. Their individual tragedies have made them complex people who just happen to be perfect for one another.

I don’t know if we’ll get another Vegas Nights book (perhaps about Dahlia’s bar manager Abby?), but if Emma Hart writes it, I’ll read it.

By day, New York Times and USA Today bestselling New Adult author Emma Hart dons a cape and calls herself Super Mum to two beautiful little monsters. By night, she drops the cape, pours a glass of whatever she fancies—usually wine—and writes books.

Emma is working on Top Secret projects she will share with her followers and fans at every available opportunity. Naturally, all Top Secret projects involve a dashingly hot guy who likes to forget to wear a shirt, a sprinkling (or several) of hold-onto-your-panties hot scenes, and a whole lotta love.

She likes to be busy—unless busy involves doing the dishes, but that seems to be when all the ideas come to life.

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BLOG TOUR REVIEW: Blood Guard (Mission #1)


Blood Guard (Mission #1), by Megan EricksonPublish Date: September 12, 2017
Publisher: Loveswept
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: adult paranormal romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4.5 STARS


(Synopsis) Tendra: One minute, I’m a bartender in gritty Mission City; the next, I’m whisked away by a vampire named Athan who tells me that I’m the lifeblood of his clan. It sounds unbelievable, but he’s got evidence I can’t deny. Turns out, Athan belongs to an underground society of vampires who feed only on humans with their consent. Their enemies have no such qualms, and they want me dead. The only thing standing in their way is strong, sexy Athan. And the closer we get, the more tempted I am to let Athan feed. . . .

Athan: How could I have known when I snatched this snarky, beautiful human off the streets that she would change mydestiny? As a loyal soldier, I must deliver Tendra to our future king—my brother. Empowered with the blood of ten generations of the Gregorie breed, she is fated to rule as our queen. But there’s something between us that’s so intoxicating, so carnal, I can’t help wanting Tendra for myself . . . even if it’s treason.

I have to admit - I got burned out on vampires. I read Twilight, Sookie Stackhouse, Night Huntress, Black Dagger Brotherhood and Chicagoland Vampires all in the same time period (along with countless other vampire books), and I just kind of got sick of them. It’s been a while since I read a vampire book. I’m glad it was Megan Erickson that broke my dry spell.

Blood Guard is not Megan’s first trip into the paranormal (see her Silver Tip Pack series for that), but it is her first go at the blood suckers. When I read a new vampire book by a new author or a new-to-me author, I’m always most interested in how they will use and spin the mythology we’re all familiar with.

In Megan’s vampire world (which is our own world, so it’s got a gritty, urban fantasy vibe to it), sunlight is deadly, they are long lived and they drink human blood to survive. All very normal vampire traits. But, in true Megan Erickson fashion, there’s a unique element or two added in just to make things extra interesting.

Our heroine, Tendra, is a pretty badass human. She has no knowledge of vampires in the beginning, and we learn that she has just lost her only family and is feeling pretty alone in her small town. She’s in a perfect position for vampire prince Athan to pluck her from her humdrum life and show her that vampires are real. But, she was not a random choice. She has a specific role to fulfill, and he’s here to protect her while they travel so that she can realize her destiny.

Thank goodness that Megan Erickson didn’t have Tendra automatically accept all this as fact right away. I hate when heroines are told vampires are real in books, and after a few half-hearted attempts at denial, they fall in line. Tendra’s a lot tougher than that, and Athan knows he has to offer her some pretty solid proof. Even with all that, it still takes her a short while to come to terms with all of it.

Like she did with the Silver Tip Pack series, Blood Guard doesn't follow every rule for vampires out there. Megan puts her ability to shock the crap out of us to good use. There's a few big twists in store that will surprise you and keep you glued to the pages. Well, those and the super sexiness. Because Tendra and Athan are crazy hot together. Their sexual chemistry builds for awhile because she's been promised to his brother. But, of course, Athan can't keep his hands off her. Thank goodness.

I'm completely sold on Megan Erickson's world of vampires. I can't see what is in store for Athan's brother Idris. 

Megan Erickson is a USA Today bestselling author of romance that sizzles. Her books have a touch of nerd, a dash of humor, and always have a happily ever after. A former journalist, she switched to fiction when she decided she likes writing her own endings better.

She lives in Pennsylvania with her very own nerdy husband and two kids. Although rather fun-sized, she's been told she has a full-sized personality. When Megan isn't writing, she's either lounging with her two cats named after John Hughes characters or... thinking about writing.

Connect with Megan:
Website: meganerickson.org
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authormeganerickson/
Twitter: www.twitter.com/MeganErickson_
Bookbub: http://bit.ly/2wlessh
Newsletter: http://bit.ly/2voYMHc

September 5, 2017

RELEASE DAY REVIEW: If There's No Tomorrow


If There's No Tomorrow, by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publish Date:
September 5, 2017
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: young adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS


(Synopsis) Lena Wise is always looking forward to tomorrow, especially at the start of her senior year. She's ready to pack in as much friend time as possible, to finish college applications and to maybe let her childhood best friend Sebastian know how she really feels about him. For Lena, the upcoming year is going to be epic—one of opportunities and chances.

Until one choice, one moment, destroys everything.

Now Lena isn't looking forward to tomorrow. Not when friend time may never be the same. Not when college applications feel all but impossible. Not when Sebastian might never forgive her for what happened.

For what she let happen.

With the guilt growing each day, Lena knows that her only hope is to move on. But how can she move on when her and her friends' entire existences have been redefined? How can she move on when tomorrow isn't even guaranteed?

I had to psych myself up to read this one. Not because I was afraid I wouldn't like it. After reading The Problem With Forever, I knew that Jennifer Armentrout could do an emotional YA contemporary so well. No - it was the fact that I knew it would slay me, and I had to gear myself up for the tears. I mean, that description, right?? It sounds so ominous and unfortunate. It sounds like death is involved somehow, and knowing these are kids, any death in their young lives is going to be tragic. 

I was SO right.

But, despite the fact that I had the book in my hand for a few weeks before I actually started reading it, I did love it. Lena's a book fan who has a large circle of friends including three best girl friends and one best guy friend. She's a moderately good volleyball player, a good student and has a great mom (although, her dad is another story). She worries about all the typical things 17-year-old girls worry about - what college will she go to and what will she study? How could she have let that guy kiss her last month? And why does she have to have feelings for her best guy friend Sebastian? 

Then, one choice on one night changes her world in a tragic way. 

I think, for me, one of the things about this book that made it especially emotional is that everything that happens to Lena has happened to other teens in America countless times over. Perhaps not always with the same outcome, but kids grapple with the choices Lena faced, and I'm sure they make the same one. I want my daughter to read this book when she gets to high school, and I hope she makes some sort of connection with the characters and uses it as a reference if she finds herself in a similar situation. 

Never fear all you romance lovers out there - despite the deep and heavy subject matter, there is plenty of romance in If There's No Tomorrow to sink your teeth into. Things between Sebastian and Lena develop at such a great pace. The romance never seems to be thrown in there in a haphazard way, as romances sometimes seem when they're overshadowed by the larger story arc. Lena's way of dealing with what happened remains always at the forefront, and how her relationship with Sebastian develops is shaped because of that larger story arc. It's as it should be, even if it is incredibly frustrating to read at times. 

If There's No Tomorrow is told entire from Lena's POV. In some of Jen Armentrout's previous books, she's gone back later and posted on her website portions of her books written from the guy's POV. I would LOVE to get some of that here. There's no doubt that this is entirely Lena's journey, so it's only right that it be told all by her. But, there are some parts of the story, that I would've loved to have known what was going through Sebastian's head. That would be an amazing extra. 

I'm a huge Jen Armentrout fan. She's so versatile - able to write emotional YA contemporary one month and adult romantic suspense the next. And she does them all so very well. If There's No Tomorrow will gut you and frustrate you. It will make you cry and make you smile a little from time to time too. And it's one that will stay with you for a long time. 

September 1, 2017

RELEASE DAY REVIEW, EXCERPT & GIVEAWAY: Most Valuable Playboy


Lauren Blakely does it again. Another touchdown.

Most Valuable Playboy, by Lauren Blakely
Publish Date:
September 1, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and InkslingerPR
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS


(Synopsis) Hands down, my favorite thing in the world is to score. Touchdowns.


Don't let the fact that I'm the leading pick in the Most Valuable Playboy charity auction fool you. These days, I'm only a player on the field. I've kept my pants zipped all season long -- and it has been long -- because nothing's more important than leading my team to victory every week. Except maybe escaping from the team owner's recently-widowed and handsy-as-hell sister who's dead set on winning more than a date with me.


Enter Violet and a well-placed Hail Mary.


She's my best friend's sister with a smile as sweet as cherry pie and a mind that runs quicker than the 40-yard-dash. After Violet saves the day with the highest bid, I don't even give her a two-minute warning before I kiss her in front of the whole crowd and then announce that she's my girlfriend. Which would be fine except my agent tells me we've got to keep up the act while he's negotiating my contract. 


Violet takes one for the team and pretends to be mine, but our boyfriend-girlfriend scrimmage quickly turns into a full contact sport, and I want it to go into overtime. The problem is -- I've been riding the bench for years.

How can a guy like me, who finally has a chance to prove his worth on the field, convince the girl she’s most valuable to his heart?

Lauren Blakely's male POV rom-coms are absolutely my jam. Not only are they funny, sweet and sexy, but I just love how she writes from the guy's POV. And how she cleverly captures bits of the girl's POV in round-about ways. 

Cooper is a star in the NFL and has always had a crush on one of his best childhood friends, Violet. When she bids on him during a bachelor auction to save him from a potentially bad situation with his team owner's sister, Cooper finally get what he's always wanted - to be Violet's boyfriend. Even if it is only fake for the press. But, for him, it's more real than anything else in his life.

Most Valuable Playboy takes a few of my favorite tropes - friends-to-lovers, fake relationship, secret crush, best friend's sister - and mashes them all together in such a perfect way. They're all things we've read before, but with the all-male POV and Lauren Blakely's special brand of humor and heat, it makes this particular story super special. 

Cooper is the sweetest beta hero ever. He's polite to a fault and treats women - even those he can't stand and who don't give him the same in return - with the utmost respect. Violet has been in his life since she was in second grade and he became best friends with her brother. They would do anything for each other, so when Cooper asks her to save him from the barracuda that is his team owner's sister, Violet doesn't hesitate. But, up on the stage after she wins him, things go a little sideways, and suddenly, Cooper and Violet are forced to spend a lot more time together. Which ends up being just the shove both of them needed.

Cooper is a famous NFL player and Violet is the owner of a beauty salon. He's used to fame and fortune and she is not. That's only one hurdle these two have to overcome in order to make the HEAs in their heads a reality. Misconceptions, miscommunication and good intentions also cause trouble for these two, who really are perfect for each other.

Most Valuable Playboy is told entirely from Cooper's POV, but with strategically placed text conversations between Violet and her BFF Holly, we can see where Violet's head is at during the whole "fake girlfriend" gig too. But, honestly, even without those texts, I could tell from her interactions with Cooper and their super steamy sheet time that she was totally into him.

Things are set up for a new story between the team's PR manager and one of Cooper's fellow team mates, and I'm already chomping at the bit for that story!

The business suit woman raises a hand, offering forty-one hundred.

Maxine’s eyes laser in on me, and she slashes an arm through the air. “Five thousand dollars,” she says, jacking the price up by nine hundred and staking her claim. I shudder inside.

The guy’s eyes widen, and he holds up his hands. “I’m out.”

My stomach plummets when the business woman shakes her head.

“Going once?” Sierra asks, scanning the tables, looking for perhaps one last big spender. My eyes scan the crowd, too. Hell, maybe I’ll find an escape hatch. A trapdoor to drop into and disappear like in a magic act. Maybe Trent will learn to read my mind. Trent, I’ll cover you for anything you bid. Just raise that hand, name a price, and save me.

My best friend’s expression is merely curious now as he watches Maxine and Sierra, waiting for the verdict. My opportunity to play yard boy slips through my fingers.

The look in Maxine’s eyes is pure satisfaction as she waits for the final word. She winks at me, as if we have a secret. Holy shit. She thinks I want this. She thinks I want her to win me.

A flash of chestnut brown hair in the back catches my attention. A flurry of silver. It’s Violet, hands in the air, wildly flapping over her head in the middle of the ballroom. She brings her finger to her nose. And she’s tapping it, like fucking Santa Claus coming down the chimney, and Harlan tapping his nose to signal his agent, and all the greatest solutions in the universe at once.

My heart goes crazy.

It hammers in my chest. This is like finding an open receiver a second before you’re sacked.

“Going twice,” Sierra says, trailing off as she waits.

I raise my arm and tap my nose, too. Violet is the only one who knows I need to get out of this jam. She’s the only one I mentioned it to. And she’s the only one now who can save me.

“Ten thousand dollars.”

Holy shit. Violet does not mess around with my money. Her eyes widen, as if she’s surprised she bid that high.

My gaze finds Trent. He’s staring at his sister, slack-jawed.

Sierra’s smile is bright and wide. “Ten thousand dollars. Do we have ten thousand, one hundred?”

The room is hushed. Maxine’s expression is blank. She must be shocked. She probably didn’t expect anyone to vie with her to this extent.

I tap my foot, willing Sierra to close this quickly. Just slam the door shut, please, fucking please.

“Going one. Going twice.”

I say a silent prayer. I cross my fingers. I hope.

Maxine blinks, opens her mouth, and I steel myself for a disgustingly high counter bid.

But there’s only silence. No words come. Violet has shocked her speechless. This type of bid wasn’t in Maxine’s playbook.

Sierra raises her arm. “And a night with the quarterback is sold for ten thousand dollars.”

Talk about a Hail Mary.

A #1 New York Times Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that's hot, sweet and sexy. She lives in California with her family and has plotted entire novels while walking her dogs. With fourteen New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than eighty times, and she's sold more than 2 million books. In September she'll release MOST VALUABLE PLAYBOY, a standalone sports romance. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter! laurenblakely.com/newsletter


Learn more about Lauren --> Website ** Facebook ** Twitter ** Newsletter ** Goodreads


✮✮✮ Enter to win this amazing MOST VALUABLE PLAYBOY GIVEAWAY! ✮✮✮

Lauren’s Most Valuable Playboy Team Spirit Prize Package Giveaway! This bundle is valued at $450 and includes a Coach Handbag ($300 value) and $150 Stub Hub Gift Card to use for tickets to the game, your favorite concert, or theater performance.


August 31, 2017

EXCERPT REVEAL: Blood Guard (Mission #1)


If you haven't heard by now, let me be the first to fangirl all over you when I tell you that Megan Erickson has a new vampire book releasing in just a few short weeks. She only recently crossed into the paranormal world with her Silver Tip Pack series, and I have to tell you - if she does vampires half as well as she does shifters, we're all in for a real treat.

Today I have an excerpt for you from the first book in her Mission series, BLOOD GUARD.

Blood Guard (Mission #1), by Megan Erickson
Publish Date:
September 12, 2017
Publisher: Loveswept
Genre: adult paranormal romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

(Synopsis) Tendra: One minute, I’m a bartender in gritty Mission City; the next, I’m whisked away by a vampire named Athan who tells me that I’m the lifeblood of his clan. It sounds unbelievable, but he’s got evidence I can’t deny. Turns out, Athan belongs to an underground society of vampires who feed only on humans with their consent. Their enemies have no such qualms, and they want me dead. The only thing standing in their way is strong, sexy Athan. And the closer we get, the more tempted I am to let Athan feed. . . .


Athan: How could I have known when I snatched this snarky, beautiful human off the streets that she would change mydestiny? As a loyal soldier, I must deliver Tendra to our future king—my brother. Empowered with the blood of ten generations of the Gregorie breed, she is fated to rule as our queen. But there’s something between us that’s so intoxicating, so carnal, I can’t help wanting Tendra for myself . . . even if it’s treason.

The panic welled in my chest. I was trapped in a strange apartment with a strange man who probably outweighed me trifold. I opened up my mouth to scream but he held up his hand and said in a deep voice. “You scream, and I’ll just put you to sleep again.”

My jaw snapped shut. I focused on breathing. In and out. In and out. I wanted to thrash and yell, and holler, but he’d somehow knocked me out before and I would be useless if he did it again.

I glanced around. The only light was from a small, dim bare bulb above us. The rest of the room was in shadow. There was nothing I could use for a weapon, not even my shoes. I focused back on the man in front of me. “How’d we get here?”

“I carried you,” he answered, his voice a rumble that I felt down to my bones.

Something moved in the corner of my vision and I peered into the dark. A form materialized, and I must have been dreaming still because Brex was there. He stalked toward me, rubbed against my leg, then sat down by my feet like a feline guard. I tried to be calm, but I was close to losing it. I didn’t date. Was this how people dated now? Maybe it was a thing. “Why is my cat here?”

My captor didn’t move, and half of his face was in shadow. “I brought him.”

“I don’t keep my ID on me, so how’d you know where I live?”

“I didn’t need your ID.” His eyes narrowed slightly. “I’ve been watching you.”

Oh, just fucking great. A stalker. I’d be lucky if I made it out of here without him wearing my skin like clothes and my head in a freezer. “Okay, cool. Well, uh, hi. I’m Tendra. I applaud you for your unconventional, um, greeting. Want to untie me? We can go for a drink. I make a mean screwdriver.”

Confusion flickered over his face, then his scowl deepened, like uncertainty angered him. “No.”

I didn’t want to make him mad, but I’d never been great at keeping my mouth shut. Sometimes me opening my mouth was the reason we had to move. “Do you want money? Because I’m sorry to say, you kidnapped the wrong girl. Especially because I just paid rent. I’m eating peanut butter out of the tub for the next week.”

Again with the angry confusion. He rubbed his forehead. “I don’t want your money.”

I gritted my teeth. “Well, now you have me here. What do you plan to do to me?” The panic was slowly switching over to anger, the fight instinct my mother instilled in me strong as ever. If he was going to kill me, maybe I could piss him off enough that it would be quick. “Because I’ll tell you right now, I will fight you to my dying breath and then come back from the dead and haunt you until I convince you to cut your own dick off.”

His expression didn’t change. “Charming.”

I was signing my death warrant, but I couldn’t resist getting a shot in. “Fuck you, you creeper.”

His chest rose as he inhaled sharply. “Right, so let’s have it out. I’m your guard, because you’re destined to be delivered to my older brother in order to make our clan stronger.”

I didn’t move. Not an inch. Because holy shit, not only was he a creepy stalker, but he was out of his gourd, too. I couldn’t just have an evil stalker. Oh, no, I had to have a lunatic one, too. Zero of what he said made sense, so I focused on one thing at a time. “Excuse me? Clan? What are you, cavemen?”

I thought he’d take offense, but instead he just looked bored. “No, not cavemen. Vampires.”

I blinked.

And blinked again.

But nope, he was still there. This was still happening. Only me. If I made it out of here alive, what a story I’d have to sell about my stalker who thought he was a vampire. I had visions of the guy trying to bite my neck with his blunt teeth. Which made a giggle bubble up in my throat, which turned into a laugh, which turned into me throwing my head back in hysterical laughter until tears streamed down my cheeks.

When I dropped my head and focused on him through my tears, he was watching me carefully, that impassive expression still on his face.

He reached down and picked up Brex by the scruff of his neck, which immediately ceased any and all amusement on my part. “If you hurt my cat, swear to God—“

Brex yowled and swiped a paw across the man’s face. A thin line of scarlet bloomed on his cheekbone before the man dropped Brex, who scurried off to hide under a small table near an old couch. “Good job, Brex!” I shouted after him. “Now come back and finish the job!”

I turned to my stalker, and whatever I was about to say died in my throat. I watched as the cut sealed up and vanished before my eyes.

Gone.

No mark, no blood. No nothing.

And those dark eyes were still trained on me.
Megan Erickson is a USA Today bestselling author of romance that sizzles. Her books have a touch of nerd, a dash of humor, and always have a happily ever after. A former journalist, she switched to fiction when she decided she likes writing her own endings better.

She lives in Pennsylvania with her very own nerdy husband and two kids. Although rather fun-sized, she's been told she has a full-sized personality. When Megan isn't writing, she's either lounging with her two cats named after John Hughes characters or... thinking about writing.

Connect with Megan:

Website: meganerickson.org
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authormeganerickson/
Twitter: www.twitter.com/MeganErickson_
Bookbub: http://bit.ly/2wlessh
Newsletter: http://bit.ly/2voYMHc

August 29, 2017

RELEASE DAY REVIEW: Disorderly Conduct (The Academy #1)


Disorderly Conduct (The Academy #1), by Tessa Bailey
Publish Date:
August 29, 2017
Publisher: Avon
Format: e-ARC, provided by the publisher via Edelweiss
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4.5 STARS


(Synopsis) You don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone…


Police academy cadet Charlie Burns can’t believe his luck when the gorgeous blonde he meets in a bar murmurs those magic words: “Nothing serious, ’kay?” Mind-blowing, no-strings sex with Ever Carmichael—it’s the holy grail of hookups for a guy who’s too busy following in his law enforcement family’s footsteps to think about getting serious. Charlie’s all about casual…that is, until Ever calls it quits and his world tilts on its axis.


Ever knows that when you control the relationship game, you can’t get played. But for the first time, she wants more than short-term satisfaction. Step one: end her fling with commitment-phobic Charlie. Step two: sacrifice herself to the ruthless NYC dating scene. Yet everywhere she turns, there’s Charlie, being his ridiculously charming self. No online match or blind date compares to the criminally hot cop-in-training, but they’re over. Aren’t they?


If love is a four-letter-word, why does the idea of Ever seeing someone else tie Charlie up in knots? Now he’s desperate to win her back…and a little date sabotage never hurt anyone, right?

Disorderly Conduct has Tessa Bailey stamped all over it from the dirty talking NYC cop-in-training to the ball-busting chef that he can't seem to quit. Tessa has taken us back to the law-enforcing alpha males that she does so freaking well, and I've never been more happy about getting all up in a cop's business. 

Disorderly Conduct sort of flips the standard romance formula around a bit. Charlie and Ever make an instant connection in a bar and follow it up with an amazing night of no-strings sex. Both of them are total commitment-phobes and are perfectly happy with frantic quickies for a limited time only. But, then Ever's mother turns her life upside down when she gives her some words that convince her to try finding a lasting, loving relationship. No matter how much Ever likes Charlie, he's made it clear he's married to his job, and everyone else comes second. So, she calls an end to their fling so that she can find a nice, permanent man to settle down with. 

All that happens in the first 15% or so of the book. The stage is set as Ever creates an online dating persona in her attempts to find Mr. Right. And Charlie, for some inexplicable reason is determined to thwart her every attempt so that he can keep his favorite hook-up girl available whenever he wants her. Now I know - Charlie sounds like a total douche. But, the ways he goes about trying to convince Ever that a relationship - especially with the guys she's looking at - is not what she wants is kind of adorable. And the fact that he has no idea he's doing all this because he likes her more than just a one-month stand is frustratingly funny. 

Thankfully, we get to be in Charlie's head for half the book, so we can bear witness to the turmoil going on within him over his antics. He doesn't want to hurt her, but he doesn't want to leave her. He doesn't want to date her, but he doesn't want to stop sleeping with her. He doesn't want to get to know her, but when he learns things about her, he realizes he is fascinated by her. 

Ever is a tough-as-nails chick. She's starting a new catering business with her BFF and has left a long string of "just sex" relationships in her wake. It's all she knows. She can admit to herself that a real relationship with Charlie is really what she wants, but she also knows that he doesn't want that. She does the right thing and cuts him loose so that he can go be a lieutenant on the police force like his brother and his father, without the complications of a girlfriend. She's brave, and I loved that about her. 

Poor Charlie doesn't know what he wants. He thinks he knows, but all that changes when he meets Ever. And it takes him a good long time to get his head on straight and see what he really wants. Unfortunately, by that time, things have sort of gotten out of his control. So, of course, that's when it really gets interesting. 

We meet the side characters that will make up the books in the rest of The Academy series, and I'm already looking forward to reading all the HEAs of theses academy recruits. 

August 25, 2017

REVIEW: Rule Breaker (Rules of Engagement #1)


Rule Breaker (Rules of Engagement #1), by Sienna Snow
Publish Date:
November 1, 2016
Publisher: Forever Romance
Format: e-ARC, provided by the publisher
Genre: adult crime/suspense romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4 STARS


(Synopsis) She controls a technology empire. He controls her.


At just twenty-eight years old, Arya Rey has become queen of the tech world. While she is highly respected as a philanthropist and fearless businesswoman, no one would suspect that beneath her controlled exterior simmers a private passion. A desire never spoken of in Boston’s elite social circles. A need for submission, for satisfaction, for the kind of exquisite pleasure that can only be provided by one man . . . her billionaire ex-lover Maxwell Dane.


It’s been five years since Max and Arya last met. Five years that they’ve longed for the feel of each other’s skin. Max always takes what he wants, and he wants Arya back. But it’s more than the memory of her broken heart that makes her resist. During their time apart, Arya has collected secrets of her own. She can give Max her body, but can she give him the truth?

I love getting sucked down the rabbit hole of a new-to-me author. It was like that for me with Sienna Snow. Rule Breaker was suspenseful and glitzy and so super sexy, and as soon as I was done, I had to read more. And not just because it was obvious that the story arc introduced here wasn't over yet, but because I found myself fully invested in the characters that were introduced.

The characters in the Rules of Engagement series are not your typical 20- and 30-somethings. They are all rich. Like, CRAZY rich. Billionaire with a B rich. And they're all brilliant, too. But, Rule Breaker drives home the point that, even though our main characters are beautiful and rich and smart, that does not mean that they can't still be idiots and do dumb things when it comes to love and relationships.

Rule Breaker is a second-chance love story. Arya and Max had a very intense relationship five years earlier until Max ended things abruptly and broke Arya's heart. Arya threw herself into her tech and security work and between she and her two best friends, she hid herself away from Max in an attempt to forget. Five years later, Arya and her friend Milla's company was just merged with another company in a billion-dollar deal - and the company it is now intertwined with is Max's. He's spent this time planning how to get her back, and it's time to set his plan in action. 

Max is absolutely a force of nature. He is determined and possessive and alpha to the millionth degree. And dominant doesn't even cover it. In ALL ways. Initially, when I learned of his and Arya's back story, I was totally in favor of Arya blowing him off forever. Or at least making him grovel. A lot. But, Max isn't the groveling type, so I remained firmly in Arya's corner for a long time as she continued to try and deny that she still loved him. 

But, Max does apologize. And through his actions, he won me over. Completely. Yes, he's overbearing and steamrolls Arya half the time, but his motivation was clear. Everything he did was done out of love and concern for Arya. And Arya definitely deserved his concern, since she has some really dangerous people after her for what's inside her brain. 

The ending is scary and suspenseful and exciting. And, although Arya's and Max's story of getting together reaches a conclusion in Rule Breaker, it's clear that the danger isn't over - it just gets transferred to her BFF and business partner Milla. 

Arya, Max, Milla, Lex, Carmen and Thomas are all compelling characters with so much story to tell. In addition to the romantic suspense, there's also a very rich BDSM thread woven in (Max also owns a BDSM club - I mean, what billionaire wouldn't?). Rule Breaker has a little bit of everything to thrill a wide variety of romance lovers. Be prepared for an exciting and steamy ride. 

August 22, 2017

RELEASE DAY REVIEW: Love Another Day (Masters and Mercenaries #14)


Love Another Day (Masters and Mercenaries #14), by Lexi Blake
Publish Date:
August 22, 2017
Publisher: DLZ Entertainment
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and InkslingerPR
Genre: adult crime/suspense romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4 STARS


(Synopsis) A man born to protect 


After a major loss, Brody Carter found a home with the London office of McKay-Taggart. A former soldier, he believes his job is to take the bullets and follow orders. He’s happy to take on the job of protecting Dr. Stephanie Gibson while the team uses her clinic in Sierra Leone to bring down an international criminal. What he never expected was that the young doctor would prove to be the woman of his dreams. She’s beautiful, smart, and reckless. Over and over he watches her risk her life to save others. One night of pure passion leads him to realize that he can’t risk his heart again. When the mission ends, Brody walks away, unwilling to lose another person he loves.

A woman driven to heal

Stephanie’s tragic past taught her to live for today. Everything she’s done in the last fifteen years has been to make up for her mistakes. Offering medical care in war-torn regions gives her the purpose she needs to carry on. When she meets her gorgeous Aussie protector, she knows she’s in too deep, but nothing can stop her from falling head over heels in love. But after one amazing night together, Brody walks away and never looks back. Stephanie is left behind…but not alone.

A secret that will change both their lives

A year later, Stephanie runs afoul of an evil mercenary who vows to kill her for failing to save his son. She runs to the only people she trusts, Liam and Avery O’Donnell. She hasn’t come alone and her secret will bring her former lover across the world to protect her. From Liberia to Dallas to Australia’s outback, Brody will do whatever it takes to protect Stephanie from the man who wants to kill her, but it might be her own personal demons that could destroy them both.

I was really looking forward to reading Love Another Day, because Brody has always tripped my trigger. Steph was a bit tiresome at times, but on the whole, this was a fantastic addition to this dangerously sexy series.

At the beginning of the book, I was totally on Team Steph. Brody did what she asked and gave her one amazing night together. But, when she became pregnant and tried calling and emailing and texting him, Brody never responded. It wasn't that he didn't get her messages - he did. He just chose to ignore them for... reasons. But, he never stopped thinking about her. 

So, when word gets to him that Steph is in danger and has asked McKay-Taggert for help protecting her, he immediately leaves London and comes to Texas to take on the task personally. And, of course, he discovers a surprise in the form of his infant son Nate when he arrives. 

I love how, in the M&M series, Lexi Blake always finds a way to weave in levity into the constant dangerous situations and the seriously heavy sexual tension. The grief that Adam, Ian and the rest of the team give Brody over Steph's new "companion" is absolutely hilarious and perfectly timed. And Ian's unique way of dealing with both his employees and his enemies is always good for a smile and a laugh. And all of that is much needed. Because outside of those moments, it is literally one dangerous or lusty moment after another. 

Although Brody wasn't my favorite person in the beginning, the way he was with his son and the way he constantly tried to make up for his mistakes with Steph very quickly won me to his side. But, it's like, the more awesome Brody because, the more irritating Steph got. Because of a tragic event in her past, she's always felt this overwhelming need to atone, but it's never enough. She has a seriously huge martyr complex, and now that she has a son and a man who loves her, that made me ridiculously angry. And not just me. 

Brody and Steph have this great connection. I felt like Love Another Day brought us back to the series' BDSM roots. There was a lot more of that type of exploration and play in here that seems to have been missing from recent books. And Brody was a great master. But, despite that, Brody still gets angry with Steph when all she wants to do is sacrifice herself in some noble way. It's got to be exhausting for him to keep an eye on her to make sure she doesn't do something stupid. It's not good for trust-building in a new relationship, for sure. So, while the sex is phenomenal, everything else is constantly up in the air.

The new recruits that Ian has brought on board will surely give us plenty of new fodder for the M&M series. After all - there are 26 Bond movies, so there are lots more titles out there to choose from.