New Release: Rise (Rock Solid #1) by Karina Bliss *Guest Post and Giveaway*

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Rise (Rock Solid #1)
by Karina Bliss

An Adult Contemporary Rockstar Romance
Released January 28, 2015

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“You have the ability to make controversial characters sympathetic. Maybe I just want to be understood.”

Acclaimed literary biographer Elizabeth Winston writes about long-dead heroes. So bad boy rock icon Zander Freedman couldn’t possibly tempt her to write his memoir. Except the man is a mass of fascinating contradictions – manipulative, honest, gifted, charismatic, morally ambiguous.

In short, everything she sought in a biography subject. When in her life will she get another chance to work with a living legend? But saying yes to one temptation soon leads to another.

Suddenly she’s having heated fantasies about her subject, fantasies this blue-eyed-devil is only too willing to stoke. She’d thought self-control was in her DNA, after all she grew up a minister’s daughter. She thought wrong.

Outside your comfort zone is the only place worth living…

Zander Freedman has been an outlier – many would say an outcast – for most of his life. But there’s no disaster he can’t overcome, from the break-up of his band to the fall-out on his reputation. His Resurrection Tour is shaping up to be his greatest triumph – if his golden voice holds out. Contracting a respected biographer is simply about creating more buzz; Elizabeth’s integrity the key to consolidating his legacy as one of rock’s greats.

All the damn woman has to do is write down what he tells her. Not make him think.

Or encourage the good guy struggling to get out. And certainly not to fall in love for the first time in his life.

Turns out he is scared of something – being known.

Rise – a redemption story of a rock star going straight(er) through the love of a good(ish) woman.

 

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Turning a bad boy into a romance hero
By Karina Bliss

 

Zander Freedman, the rock star hero of Rise, has been a minor character in three previous books. I wrote him as vain, selfish and egotistical, a neglectful son, bad brother and lousy boyfriend. And yet readers loved this guy and wanted his story, possibly because of his few attractive qualities – unflinching honesty, intelligence and a keen sense of irony.

One of my biggest challenges in finding ‘the hero-within’ was Zander’s reputation for vanity. How is a reader going to fall in love with a guy rumoured to have had everything from Botox and tattooed eyeliner to hair implants?

In one scene, I had the heroine’s family voice every Yuck the reader would have around a guy with a ‘beauty’ regime. And then fall over themselves when they thought Zander was visiting. Because the guy’s still a rock god, still extraordinary. And it’s too easy to criticize a stranger. In effect, I’m asking the reader to keep an open mind.

Given that Zander is smart and ambitious it also made sense that he would deliberately exaggerate his vanity for the press. Any publicity is good publicity when this showman is promoting the band’s tour. He also takes a pragmatist’s view of maintaining his looks; keeping in shape is simply a part of his job as Rage’s frontman. And finally, I made him supremely confident in his masculinity. At one point he even says, “A real man should be able to seduce a woman in a tutu and a tiara…Actually that would be fun.”

Most importantly, I gave Zander the vulnerability attached to being a beautiful person. Women date me because of the way I look. What will happen if I stop these treatments? Who will love me as I age? The Beauty, as well as the Beast, is judged on appearances.

Of course that’s just one aspect of the reinvention of Zander Freedman. Hopefully, I’ve intrigued you enough to read about his moral make-over.

Do you have a favorite bad-boy hero? Enter the Release Giveaway and go into the draw for an e-book of Rise.

 

About the Author

New Zealander Karina Bliss’s debut, Mr Imperfect, won a Romantic Book of the Year award in Australia, the first of eleven books published through Harlequin SuperRomance. Her most recent release, A Prior Engagement, was a Desert Island Keeper at likesbooks.com. Her next release, Rise, is a single title, self-published contemporary which continues the story of Zander Freedman, who first appeared as a villain inKarina’s bestselling title, What the Librarian Did – a book that made DearAuthor’s Best of the Year list in 2010.Two of Karina’s books have also featured in Sizzling Book Chats at SmartBitchesTrashyBooks.

Find out more at www.karinabliss.com

 

 

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Tour: Bringing Home the Bad Boy (Second Chance #1) by Jessica Lemmon *Review, Excerpt and Giveaway*

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Bringing Home the Bad Boy
by Jessica Lemmon

A Contemporary Romance
From Forever
Released January 27th 2015

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The Bad Boy Is Back

Evan Downey needs a new beginning. Since the death of his wife five years ago, the brilliant tattoo artist has shut himself away in a prison of grief that not even his work can break him out of-and what’s worse, Evan knows his son Lyon is bearing the brunt of his seclusion. Moving back to the lake town of Evergreen Cove where he spent his childhood summers is his last chance for a fresh start.

Charlotte Harris knows she owes it to her best friend’s memory to help Evan and his son find their way again, but she can’t stop her traitorous heart from skipping a beat every time she looks into Evan’s mesmerizing eyes. Charlotte is determined to stay strictly in the Friend Zone-until a mind-blowing night knocks that plan by the wayside. Now, if they’re brave enough to let it, Charlotte and Evan might just find a love capable of healing their broken hearts…

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Review

5-stars

Evan needs a change of scenery for him and his son. He’s tired of living with the memories of his late wife everywhere he turns so he decides to move to Evergreen Cove, a place he remembers fondly from his childhood. It is also where Rae’s best friend Charlotte lives. He considers her a great friend and appreciates her support and her influence in his son’s life.

Charlotte “Charlie” Harris misses her best friend every day and has vowed to be there for the family she left behind. Unfortunately, having Evan so close has brought about the feelings she once thought forgotten. Try as she might, she can’t help but be drawn to Evan. It doesn’t help her guilt when he suddenly sees her and wants something more from her.

I loved this story. From the very beginning I was drawn into Evan’s story and his struggle to come to terms with his wife’s death while still managing to be there for their son. It helped that he was a tattooed hottie and a loving father too. It was a treat to explore his personality, especially once he and Charlie started spending time together.

Charlie was a great characters in her own right. Funny and considerate, Charlie struggled with feelings of inadequacy left from a past relationship. I enjoyed the growth she endured as the story progressed and admired her resolve to not give in to her attraction for Evan. Of course, I enjoyed it even more when she did give into what was developing between them, but it was those candid moments spent with Evan and his son that I truly enjoyed.

Mostly I loved that the connection between Evan and Charlie was always at the forefront of the story. Regardless of the situations Evan and Charlie found themselves in, Jessica Lemmon never failed to deepen Evan and Charlie’s initial connection. Not only did they shared a bond because of their grief over Rae’s death, but they forged their own connection. I enjoyed their flirty banter, their honest interactions and the undercurrent of sexual awareness they shared whenever they were together.

Bringing Home the Bad Boy is the first book in the Second Chance series and a fantastic start at that. I can’t wait to read more about these bad boy. Donovan’s story is next and if the excerpt provided is anything to go by, it’s going to be as great as this one.

All in all, a wonderful romantic read with plenty of steamy scenes, emotions and entertaining interactions to make it all worthwhile.

*I received a copy of this title through NetGalley in exchange of my honest opinion.

 

Excerpt

“Know why I moved here?” he asked, keeping his voice low.

She wrenched her eyes from his and focused on a spot over his shoulder.

“Because you didn’t want to live in Columbus anymore.” That’s what he’d told her. That he wanted a change. That he and Lyon had outgrown the house. And, she imagined it’d be hard to live in the house where Rae had passed.

“But why here?”

“Um…”

His fingers grazed her jaw and turned her head, his palm moving to her neck where he cupped her nape and forced her eyes to his.

Reluctantly, she met them.

“Rae’s more alive when you’re around, Ace.”

Her heart, oh her heart. Kicking against her chest in a confusing, hectic rhythm.

“You bring her to life for Lyon—more than anyone else. I need him to remember her because he can’t remember her alive.” His hold stayed, his palm warming her neck, his gaze unwavering.

She tried to separate the two feelings she was having—one that she was now talking about Rae with Evan and two, that he was touching her while talking about Rae.

Before she could, his lips closed over hers.

Her thoughts short-circuited.

This wasn’t anything like a soft peck hello. This was his lips moving over hers, slanting over hers, warm and firm and then his mouth opened and—

Oh my gosh!

His wet, warm tongue slid along the seam of her lips and she stopped being passive and started kissing him back. When she would have touched her tongue to his, he relocated it, running along her bottom lip instead and tugging with his teeth.

If she’d been standing, her knees would have given out and dropped her right on her butt.

And then there was the palm on her neck, now spearing up through her hair and clutching onto a handful of it. He held her captive, his hand fisting her hair as he angled his mouth again. In response to the soft whimper escaping her throat, he swept his tongue into her mouth. He tangled his tongue with hers once, twice, and released her.

When he pulled his mouth away, a long, satisfied sigh escaped her lips. Because that was a kiss. A kiss to rival all other kisses.

She opened her eyes to realize A) she’d closed her eyes and B) she’d at some point wrapped both hands around his forearms where she was holding tight and C) Evan looked as please as she felt.

“God damn, Ace. Your mouth.” His eyes flicked to her lips. Lips still tingling from the rough scrape from the stubble surrounding his.

She concurred with that sentiment. Not that she said anything. She’d gone dumb; completely mute.

He backed away, but held onto her chin and tweaked it lightly with the rough pad of one thumb. “That’s the way this is gonna go from now on.”

Her breathing went shallow, her thoughts went muzzy and her head blurred as her heart palpated to the point of panic attack.

“Sorry, Rae.”

She didn’t mean to say it, and it had only been a whisper, but by the look twisting Evan’s face—the angry look twisting his face—he’d heard. And he hadn’t liked what he’d heard.

“Sorry,” she said to him this time. “I should go.”

Unbelievably, he leaned closer. She pulled her chin back until she realized she likely had a double chin, then settled her head on her neck in a more reasonable position.

Gosh. He was making her crazy.

 

About Jessica Lemmon

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Jessica Lemmon has always been a dreamer. At some point, she decided head-in-the-clouds thinking was childish, went out, and got herself a job . . . and then she got another one because that one was lousy. And when that one stopped being fulfilling, she went out and got another . . . and another. Soon it became apparent she’d only be truly happy doing what she loved. And since “eating potato chips” isn’t a viable career, she opted to become a writer. With fire in her heart, she dusted off a book she’d started years prior, finished it, and submitted it. It may have been the worst book ever, but it didn’t stop her from writing another one. Now she has several books finished, several more started, and even more marinating in her brain (which currently resides in the clouds, thankyouverymuch), and she couldn’t be happier. She firmly believes God gifts us with talents for a purpose, and with His help, you can create the life you want. (While eating potato chips.)

 

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Spotlight: Filthy Rich by Dawn Ryder *Review, Excerpt and Giveaway*

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Filthy Rich
By Dawn Ryder

An Erotic Romance
From Sourcebooks Casablanca
Expected February 3, 2015

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SHE’S FIGHTING FOR CONTROL…
Celeste Connor swore that she’d never be a victim again. After the hell of her abusive ex, the last thing she needs is to be under another man’s thumb. But when she catches the eye of fiercely dominant Nartan Lupan at her best friend’s wedding, Celeste finds herself drawn into a glittering world of wealth and power that has her body aching and her mind reeling.

HE’S FIGHTING TO MAKE HER HIS…
Nartan is a filthy rich businessman who works hard, plays harder, and doesn’t take no for an answer-and he wants Celeste with a hunger he’s never before felt. He’ll do whatever it takes to have her. But Nartan didn’t expect that he’d want still more…

 

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Review

3-stars

While attending her best friend’s wedding in Alaska, Celeste meets Nartan a rich and handsome business man. They are drawn to each other instantly.

Nartan sees Celeste as a challenge and is determined in his pursuit of her. Celeste is reluctant to give in since her last relationship ended badly. But try as she might, Celeste can’t resist the overwhelming feelings Nartan sparks in her. Soon her past comes back to threaten her and her newly established relationship. Will this ultimately bring them closer or break them apart?

This is the first book by Dawn Ryder I’ve read and I was pleasantly surprised by it.

I enjoyed the characters, especially Nartan. I found him to be your typical alpha male but it was the little intricacies of his personality that set him apart from other heroes in the genre. Celeste was a great character too, but I found some of her behavior hard to accept considering her history and initial reluctance to Nartan. I felt she gave into Nartan too quickly and immersed herself in the relationship too much too soon.

Although Nartan and Celeste had an intense chemistry and the author did a great job of bringing that to the page with their steamy sex scenes, I found myself wanting more of a connection between them. Thankfully there were some honest interactions and candid moments that helped quench my need for a more solid connection. Through these moments I was able to see that they had something to built on other than great chemistry.

It also helped that the author brought the suspense a notch or two, which kept things interesting throughout. The plot was easy to follow, the conflict well established and its resolution was executed accordingly. No over the top situations, an adequate amount of intrigue and enough twists and turns to keep the reader entertained.

All in all, an interesting and sexy romance with a bit of emotions, intense chemistry and an engaging plot to round it all up.

*I received a copy of this title through NetGalley in exchange of my honest opinion.

 

Excerpt

A howl woke her.

Celeste sat up and looked around the room.

The sun had finally gone down sometime after ten. Now the stars were brilliant, and a yellow moon was casting an amazing level of light in the nighttime hours.

There was a whimper and then another long howl.

Alaskan wolves.

She could sleep when she got back to Southern California.

She got up and hurried into her jeans. Only the range light was on in the kitchen, but with so much moonlight coming through the windows, it was easy to get to the mudroom and lace up her boots.

She opened the outer door slowly, sliding through to keep from moving it too much. A howl sounded, so much louder now that she was outside. She pressed the door shut and knelt down.

The starlight illuminated the wolves. At least six of them were pawing the ground as they moved along the road that connected the house with the test facility offices. Those offices weren’t even in sight.

But the wolves were.

And so was Nartan.

He was crouched down twenty feet away. Her breath caught as she took in the way he blended with the moment. The wolves made yipping sounds as they came closer, smelling the road and the air as they went.

Nartan lifted his hand and beckoned her toward him. Her steps seemed too noisy, the crunching sounds grating on her ears. A wolf looked toward her and she froze.

Nartan beckoned again, turning to look at her.

The animal was still fifty feet away, but it was looking toward her. She bit her lower lip, afraid of spooking the animal.

Nartan closed in on her, moving right up next to her.

“He can smell you. You’re upwind. Come down here with me. He won’t worry about you then.”

“Oh…”

Nartan clasped her hand and pulled her down to where he’d been. He lifted his head, judging the wind. The wolf let out a yip and joined the rest as they scratched at the dirt and one another. Two of them would circle another, lowering their heads and yipping. The wolf in the center was the one who lifted its head and let out a long howl.

“The alpha…” Nartan whispered.

He had his arm draped around her, his scent filling her senses.

Why did he smell so good?

Not that it really mattered. He was still as pond water but his skin was warm. His attention was on the wolves, but she felt like it was on her as well. He shifted just a bit, and inhaled next to her hair.

Fresh from bed, it was a soft cloud. She reached up, self–conscious about how messy it was. He caught her hand and stopped her as the alpha looked at them. The animal’s eyes were pools of moonlight. Its mouth was open, giving her a glimpse of its long canine teeth. It made a low sound before pushing its front paws out and stretching its neck up and tilting its head until its nose pointed at the moon. A long, mournful cry filled the night.

It felt like she was suspended in time. They might have been anywhere, in any year.

“Lower your head.”

He tucked his chin and cupped her nape.

“To show submission…”

Celeste stiffened. Nartan chuckled in a bare whisper next to her ear. “To the alpha.”

She bent, the wolf watching her before losing interest and moving along with the pack.

Nartan massaged her neck, his fingers working the stiffness from the muscles as she straightened. “Well done.”

It felt like there was innuendo in his comment. But maybe she was just being too sensitive.

To–be–dealt–with list.

She drew in a deep breath and forced herself to relax. The wolves were moving away now, heading toward a forested area. The alpha looked back at them before it disappeared into the timber.

“That was amazing,” she whispered.

Nartan’s hand was under her hair, the touch so intimate that she was loath to pull away. He threaded his fingers through her hair, pulling his hand free as he finger–combed the strands. He watched her as he did it, his eyes reflecting the moonlight just as the alpha’s had.

He was in his element.

Call it cheesy or lame but she couldn’t shake it.

So she rose, backing away from him as he stood. His shirt was open all the way down his front, his jeans sagging low on his waist because he didn’t have a belt on. And his feet were bare.

“Aren’t you cold?”

He slowly smiled and extended his hand. “Judge for yourself.”

She started to reach for him and froze. Indecision held her in its grip as the wind blew her hair around. One of his dark eyebrows rose as she hesitated.

Chicken…

She reached out and touched him. Allowed her fingertips to rest on his forearm for a moment that felt like a mini eternity. It ended when he twisted his arm around and captured her wrist. He stepped up to her, pulling her toward him. She could have broken the hold, if she was able to think.

Which she wasn’t.

Her brain seemed to have shut down. Somehow, she was caught in a storm of sensations, completely unwilling to think about anything. She simply wanted to experience the moment.

Well, it was quite a moment.

Rich with scents and sensations that were intoxicating. His breath teased her ear and then her cheek. A shudder shook her, sending a tiny gasp through her lips. Nartan took advantage of her parted lips, pressing his down on top of them and tasting them slowly.

God, how long had it been since she’d been kissed?

Pleasure flowed through her, gaining strength like a flame catching a wick. Sure, she knew that a candle was for lighting, but until it was lit, the memory of how bright it could shine was dim.

She stepped back. Startled by how much she liked his kiss.

She wanted more.

A hell of a lot more.

But she turned and headed back into the house before she could do anything impulsive.

Moon madness. That was all.

Only she wasn’t really sure if she would ever be sane again.

 

About the Author

Dawn Ryder is the erotic romance pen name of a bestselling author of historical romances. She has been publishing her stories for over 8 years to a growing and appreciative audience. She is commercially published in mass market and trade paper, and digi-first published with trade paper releases. She is hugely committed to her career as an author, as well as to other authors and to her readership. She resides in Southern California.

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Tour: Withering Hope by Layla Hagen *Review and Giveaway*

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Withering Hope
by Layla Hagen

A Contemporary Romance
Released January 19th 2015

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Aimee’s wedding is supposed to turn out perfect. Her dress, her fiancé and the location—the idyllic holiday ranch in Brazil—are perfect.

But all Aimee’s plans come crashing down when the private jet that’s taking her from the U.S. to the ranch—where her fiancé awaits her—defects mid-flight and the pilot is forced to perform an emergency landing in the heart of the Amazon rainforest.

With no way to reach civilisation, being rescued is Aimee and Tristan’s—the pilot—only hope. A slim one that slowly withers away, desperation taking its place. Because death wanders in the jungle under many forms: starvation, diseases. Beasts.

As Aimee and Tristan fight to find ways to survive, they grow closer. Together they discover that facing old, inner agonies carved by painful pasts takes just as much courage, if not even more, than facing the rainforest.

Despite her devotion to her fiancé, Aimee can’t hide her feelings for Tristan—the man for whom she’s slowly becoming everything. You can hide many things in the rainforest. But not lies. Or love.

Withering Hope is the story of a man who desperately needs forgiveness and the woman who brings him hope. It is a story in which hope births wings and blooms into a love that is as beautiful and intense as it is forbidden.

 

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Review

4 stars

Aimee is looking forward to marrying her long-time boyfriend and childhood friend Chris. She’s traveling to Brazil for the wedding when the plane she’s traveling in crashed in the Amazon rainforest. First she’s stunned and holding out hope for a rescue, but as the days pass her by she settles into a unlikely routine with Tristan at her side.

Tristan, the pilot of the plane, has been working for Chris for some time. He has gotten to know Aimee a bit since he served as her driver back in the US. He likes her fine and finds her attractive, but he’s not a social person–not anymore. But being stranded in the rainforest doesn’t allow him the chance to keep to himself as per usual and soon he finds he doesn’t want her to keep her distance.

I have to say that I was reluctant about how this story would turn out, but in the end my curiosity won out. Thankfully, it paid to follow my curiosity. Maybe it was the incredulity of the situation and how the author went about bringing it to the page or maybe it was the way the author went out of her way to bring these characters together in the unlikeliest of circumstances, but I truly enjoyed Tristan and Aimee’s story.

I especially enjoyed the growth these two characters endured as the story progressed. In the beginning, Tristan was closed off and emotionally unavailable, but as he got to spend more time with Aimee he came to let her in beyond the walls he had erected around himself. His past hunted him and he found peace in Aimee’s presence, which served to deepen their bond.

I also enjoyed how Aimee became more confident and the way she went about adjusting to her situation. I thought for sure she was going to be a snob about it all, but she proved to be resilient and stronger than I imagined. I also admired her sense of loyalty to both Chris and Tristan. She was there for Tristan even when her guilt threatened to break her–the very guilt she felt because she thought she was being unfaithful to Chris by growing closer to Tristan.

As with any romance story of this type, there were some elements and events that were a bit unbelievable. But if you could overlook those and focus on the developing connection between the characters and the emotions they each portrayed I think you might enjoy this story as much as I did.

With great writing, intriguing characters and a sweet and slow-building romance, Withering Hope was a wonderful read from start to finish.

*I received a copy of this title in exchange of my honest opinion.

 

About the Author

Layla

My name is Layla Hagen and I am a New Adult Contemporary Romance author.

I fell in love with books when I was nine years old, and my love affair with stories continues even now, many years later.

I write romantic stories and can’t wait to share them with the world.

And I drink coffee. Lots of it, in case the photo didn’t make it obvious enough.

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Tour: Kick (Savage Saints MC #1) by Carmen Jenner *Excerpt and Giveaway*

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Kick (Savage Saints MC #1)
by Carmen Jenner

An MC Romance
Released January 26th 2015

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When I was ten, my father indoctrinated me into the family.

A brotherhood who would fight, protect, and give their lives for one another. A club whose ties ran thicker than blood, murkier than the dirt and grime that tainted my soul. Stronger than the bonds that connected me to my own family.

A band of brothers where loyalty was kept and paid in a currency of blood.

When I was twenty-seven, I betrayed that brotherhood.

I’ve spent every day since running, avoiding paying back that debt.

My name is Daniel Johnson, and I have betrayed everyone I ever loved.

This is my story—if you’re screwed up enough to want to read it.

 

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Excerpt

“You gotta let go now, Princess. I gotta hand you over.”

Her panicked gaze meets mine. “He’ll shoot you.”

“No, he won’t.”

“Yes, he will.”

I smile down at her. “What are we just gonna stand here forever, you in my arms, your dad holding a gun to my head? If he shoots me, he shoots me. Ain’t nothing I can do about that, Princess. At least I’ll know I did one thing right.”

She takes a deep, shaky breath. “I’d be dead if it weren’t for you.”

I nod, because it’s true. If Slayer hadn’t come at a deal, Prez would’ve eventually killed her, and he’d have tortured her some more first. “Promise me somethin’?”

“What?”

“Get on your feet and then get the hell outta here. Prez will come looking for you again. He’s not a guy who likes to lose. Take as much money as you can, and get the fuck away from this life, otherwise you’re gonna wind up filling a body bag way too young.”

Lauren is wrenched away from me then. She screams as the Italian carts her off toward the clubhouse, flailing and slapping at him despite her injuries.

“Daniel!” she screams, reaching out toward me as he struggles to get her inside. Without thinking I take a step forward, but I’m attacked from behind. My knees go out from under me and I’m shoved face-first into the ground. Some heavy motherfucker sits down on my back. I buck, trying to unseat him, but I’m whacked in the back of the head until I stop.

“Well, isn’t that fuckin’ touching? The Angel scum, in love with my daughter? Didn’t I warn you away from her once before?” Slayer asks, circling me like a predator circles prey. The biker using me for a chair shoves his gun against the back of my skull.

“Yeah, I did,” Slayer continues, and he motions for the guy on top of me to force me to stand. I’m dragged up by the hair and presented to Slayer. “At the rally, where she fuckin’ went missin’!” His red, blotchy face almost touches mine. He’s so close I can see the blood vessels snaking out from the corners of his eyes. He’s fucking high. His daughter’s been locked up, raped, beaten, treated like a fuckin’ animal over some shit that she shouldn’t even have to know about, and the arsehole’s gettin’ high as a fuckin’ kite instead of findin’ her? He makes me sick. He’s everything I hate about the life. And he’s more than likely exactly where I’ll end up, because this is what we are—this is what livin’ in the club gets you: bitterness, enemies, and a shit-tonne of bad blood.

 

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About the Author

carmen jenner

Carmen Jenner is a thirty-something, USA TODAY Best Selling Author, doctor, pilot and CIA agent.  She’s also a compulsive, flagrant prevaricator who gets to make things up for a living.

While Sugartown may not technically exist, Carmen grew up in a small Australian town just like it, and just like her characters, she always longed for something more. They didn’t have an Elijah Cade, though.

If they did, you can be sure she would have never left.

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Other Books by this Author

Welcome to Sugartown
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Enjoy Your Stay
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Greetings from Sugartown
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Tour: Disenchanted by Leigh Goff *Guest Post*

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Disenchanted
by Leigh Goff

A Young Adult Fantasy Romance
From Musa Publishing
Released December 19th 2014

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Orphaned sixteen-year-old Sophie Greensmith is an outcast among the ordinaries and her coven, but not because she’s untalented. Descended from a powerful Wethersfield witch, her spellcasting gift is awkwardly emerging, but that’s the least of her worries. The boy she’s forbidden to fall for, a descendant of the man who condemned her witch ancestor to hang, carries a dark secret that could destroy them both unless Sophie learns how to tap into the mysterious power of her diamond bloodcharm.

 

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Guest Post

‘Disenchanted: The Power of White Magic

In Disenchanted, sixteen-year-old Sophie Goodchild, a white witch, must learn her aunt’s plant magic so she can keep her powerful magic a secret from her coven. The eldress of her coven would love nothing more than to utilize her magic in a war against the ordinaries, especially Judge Mather who is locking up young witches for magical slip-ups.

Sophie enjoys learning about her quirky aunt’s enchanted garden and finds many useful applications for some of the magical plants. Below are a few that appear in the book.

Devil’s Bit. A small purple meadow flower and a good source of nectar, which Sophie applies to her lips everyday to help her lie (this only works for Wethersfield witches), because when you are a witch in a small town with Puritanical roots, you need a little help blending in with the ordinaries and keeping secrets from your witch sisters.

White Willow Bark. A natural anti-inflammatory and hemorrhoid reliever. When Sophie meets Alexavier’s taunting older brother, Zeke, she wonders if applying the bark powder all over Zeke would improve his disposition.

Munstead Lavender. Sophie’s pillow is filled with the summery scent to help her sleep through her haunted dreams, but lavender cannot compete with the tenacity of a four hundred-year-old witch’s spirit. Fortunately, this witch is helpful and guides Sophie in her quest to break the True Love Curse her ancestor, Rebecca Greensmith, cast on the Mather bloodline.

Calendula/Chickweed. Combined in a teabag, cooled, and applied to Sophie’s eyes, this powerful anti-inflammatory reduces puffiness from her sleepless nights where strange dreams of the past blend with her present as a warning.

Annatto. Wards off evil and eases stomach distress, but this natural pigment from achiote seed pods also tints Sophie’s teeth orange, which does little to impress the Glitterati who already think she’s an odd half-witch. Little do they know, she is destined to be the most powerful witch Wethersfield has seen in four hundred years.

Lemon verbena, valerian, and rose petals. The fragrant combination brings lovers together and, as Sophie inhales the perfumed scent, her bad boy love interest, Alexavier Mather, who happens to be her family’s enemy and is devastatingly handsome with a to-die-for British accent, enters the scene.

About the Author

Leigh Goff
After taking several writing courses in college and attending professional writing workshops after I graduated from the University of Maryland, University College, I began writing young adult fiction with purpose. I joined the Maryland Writers’ Association and Romance Writers of America and became an approved artist with the Maryland State Arts Council.

My debut novel, Disenchanted, is now available, and I am working on my next, The Witch’s Ring, which will be set in Annapolis.

 

 

New Release: Why Me? by T. Renee Fike *Excerpt*

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Why Me?
by T. Renee Fike

Released January 20th 2015

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Jordyn Stevens, an independent woman, has managed to keep her head down and get through high school. She’s seen the good and ugly in people and prefers to rely only on herself. Hoping that college will be different, she opens up to her roommate Candace and her best friend, Chase. Being in the wrong place at the wrong time, Jordyn finds herself in the crosshairs of someone who would rather make her life a living hell.

Wanting to help and protect Jordyn, Candace enlists the help of her sexy football star brother Avery, who is also one to keep people at bay. Brought together by a common bond, neither expects to develop feelings for one another. However, a simple friendship doesn’t work out as planned. When tragedy strickes and miscommunication occurs, Jordyn and Avery are lead down a dark and dreary path that she is all too familiar with.

Will Avery be able to make her see that things aren’t always what they seem?

Will Jordyn be able to survive or will her WHY ME mentality destroy her?

 

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Excerpt

“Jordyn, do you want to be with someone?” he asks changing his tone.

“Maybe.”

“Maybe? What do you mean maybe?”

“I’m good with just me.”

“But you can’t tell me you don’t get lonely.”

“Sure, everyone does. But I don’t think I can really put myself out there.”

“You should try.”

“Why?”

“Because then maybe Ryder would let you alone. Oh, oh better yet, date Avery,” he says like it’s the most amazing thing ever.

“What? No, I’m not dating Avery.”

“That sounds like a great idea Chase,” Avery says, as he enters our room.

“What?” I shriek.

“Just think about it, Ryder would let you alone because he and I are friends, so it would make you off limits,” Avery says like it’s nothing.

“See, told you,” Chase laughs.

“No, that’s ridiculous and don’t you have a girlfriend?”

“When have you known me to have a girlfriend?” he asks with a look.

“I don’t know. Well, why don’t you have a girlfriend then?” I ask confused.

“I’m about to.”

 

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About the Author

T. Renee Fike was born and raised in Pennsylvania. When she’s not writing, she’s either working a full-time day job, or pursuing her Master’s degree. Aside from work and school, she enjoys hanging out with friends, reading a good book, watching football, (GO EAGLES) or hanging out with her nieces and nephew.

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Blitz: One Night with her Roommate by Noelle Adams *Excerpt and Giveaway*

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One Night with her Roommate (One Night novellas, #5)
by Noelle Adams

A Contemporary Romance
Released January 19th 2015

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Ever since her former roommates deserted her, Meg has had to share an apartment with a lazy, obnoxious ass. He won’t pick up after himself, and he refuses to get a good job. Plus, he doesn’t always wear enough clothes—which is really a problem, because he’s hot.

Maybe he’s occasionally funny. And every now and then he can be sweet. But mostly he’s just annoying. It doesn’t matter how much he’s starting to flirt with her—Meg is going to resist. She’s way too smart to fall for a guy who never takes anything seriously.

But then everything changes in only one night…

 

Roommate

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Excerpt

She started to dig into her purse for her keys, but she looked up to check out his expression. He looked uncharacteristically quiet. And his tone was uncharacteristically gentle as he asked, “You okay?”

“Of course,” she replied, trying to sound natural and peppy. “Why wouldn’t I be?”

“I don’t know. You tell me.”

“I’ve got nothing to tell you,” she said with a frown, feeling a familiar impatience return, since he was acting like he knew something of what she was feeling. “I’m happy for them. It’s great news.”

“Of course, it is. But that doesn’t mean happy is all you feel at hearing the news.”

She frowned, but her heart was starting to beat quickly, as if something important was about to happen. “Why would I be anything but happy for them?”

He stepped into her in a way that pressed her back against the door to her car. He braced a hand on the car beside her shoulder so he was kind of trapping her in place. But his expression wasn’t sexy or flirtatious. It was knowing and intimate somehow. “Maybe you’re kind of disappointed it’s not you.”

She gasped. “I’ve never had the slightest interest in Jake. Not the slightest!”

“I know that,” he murmured with a smile, his eyes almost caressing her face. “I meant maybe you’re disappointed that the engagement, the wedding, the marriage, the whole rosy fairytale isn’t happening to you.”

“Well, I’m not. I’m perfectly happy not being married.” It was the truth, so she could say it with wide eyes and no dissemblance.

His expression shifted, got a little warmer in a way she was very familiar with. “So you don’t secretly have daydreams about settling down in domestic bliss with me?”

Her pulse was throbbing wildly from his closeness and from the continued intimacy of his gaze, but she couldn’t keep a giggle from bubbling up. “You’re the last guy I’d daydream about domestic bliss with.”

“Ah, it must be other kinds of bliss I’m giving you in your daydreams.”

She flushed hot as his eyes were suddenly all about sex. All. About. Sex.

It took a minute for her recover, but her voice was mostly even when she said, “You don’t star in any of my daydreams. That’s your overinflated ego talking.” She clutched at the strap of her purse with both hands, since she desperately wanted to touch East’s chest.

It was only a couple of inches away.

 

Bonding on this special day

 

About the Author

Noelle handwrote her first romance novel in a spiral-bound notebook when she was twelve, and she hasn’t stopped writing since. She has lived in eight different states and currently resides in Virginia, where she teaches English, reads any book she can get her hands on, and offers tribute to a very spoiled cocker spaniel.

She loves travel, art, history, and ice cream. After spending far too many years of her life in graduate school, she has decided to reorient her priorities and focus on writing contemporary romances.

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Tour: Last Hit: Reloaded (Hitman #2.5) by Jessica Clare, Jen Frederick *Teaser and Giveaway*

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Last Hit: Reloaded (Hitman #2.5)
by Jessica Clare, Jen Frederick

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There was a time when Nick loved the fear he instilled in his enemies. His tattoos alone promised danger, but it was the look in his eyes that delivered on it. A contract killer since he was just a boy, Nick has now forged a new life and a new identity with the woman who followed him, captured him, and changed him.

He terrified Daisy. Once. But she couldn’t resist, and she ignored every warning. It paid off. Now she’s part of a new beginning, a fresh start in America helping him to leave behind a reckless and violent past as a professional killer. But the past is never easy to outrun, especially when so much of it thrives on revenge.

A new threat has emerged from the shadows, and now Nick and Daisy have no choice but to rely on Nick’s killer skills to protect them from everything they’ve tried so hard to escape.

 

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Teaser

Between each caress I tell her how she consumes me. “I think of you always. Art is about passion. In every curve, I see your breast and in every face, I see your lips. In rolling hills of landscapes, I envision the dip in your waist and the rise of your hip. In the tendrils of vines, I see your honey hair entangling me.” The depths of my obsession are laid bare for her. If I were to lose her, I would be nothing. I would burn myself to ashes so that the winds could carry me to the four corners and where each molecule would search endlessly for her.

“You’re always with me, Nick. In my heart and mind and soul. I promise you,” she gasps.

“Then show me how much you want me to fill you. Show me your desire.”

 

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Hitman Series

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Last Hit (Hitman, #1)

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Last Breath (Hitman, #2)

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Last Kiss (Hitman, #3) – Pre-Order!

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About the Authors

Jen Frederick lives with her husband, child, and one rambunctious dog. She’s been reading stories all her life but never imagined writing one of her own. Jen loves to hear from readers so drop her a line at jensfrederick@gmail.com.

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Jessica Claire is a pen name for Jill Myles.

Jill Myles has been an incurable romantic since childhood. She reads all the ‘naughty parts’ of books first, looks for a dirty joke in just about everything, and thinks to this day that the Little House on the Prairie books should have been steamier.

After devouring hundreds of paperback romances, mythology books, and archaeological tomes, she decided to write a few books of her own – stories with a wild adventure, sharp banter, and lots of super-sexy situations. She prefers her heroes alpha and half-dressed, her heroines witty, and she loves nothing more than watching them overcome adversity to fall into bed together.

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One Month of Elle Kennedy: After Hours Series *Reviews, Excerpt and Giveaway*

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After Hours Series
by Elle Kennedy

A Contemporary Romance Series
From Entangled Publishing–Brazen

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ONoSin_500One Night of Sin (After Hours #1)

Sometimes it’s good to be bad…

When it comes to sex, good girl Skyler Thompson always plays it safe, choosing stable and sedate over wild and thrilling. She doesn’t do one-night-stands, but one look at sinfully sexy Gage Holt and she’s willing to reconsider. He makes her want to be bad for once in her life, and she’s prepared to take what she wants.

Danger follows former MMA fighter Gage Holt like a shadow. Despite his successes as part owner of Sin, an exclusive nightclub in Boston, Gage can’t risk getting involved with a woman, especially one as sweet as Skyler. Still, he can’t resist a taste—and it’s so damn good he has to see her again.

As addicted as he is to her, Gage knows there’s no future for him and Skyler—not with his past lurking in the dark corners of an MMA cage. But Skyler’s tougher than she looks, and she’s ready to fight for her man.

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ONoScandal_500One Night of Scandal (After Hours, #2)

The wrong man never felt so right…

Ex-fighter Reed Miller has been secretly lusting over his best friend’s girl for months, but he refuses to jeopardize a friendship over a woman—especially one who doesn’t like him all that much. Now that Darcy’s on the market again, it’s even more imperative to stick to his strict hands-off policy. But the sizzling attraction between them is too powerful to ignore, and once he’s had a taste of her…all bets are off.

Darcy Grant is tired of walking the straight and narrow path. She’s on the hunt for passion, and there’s no denying Reed is just the man to give it to her. Although she has no interest in dating a bad boy, and certainly not her ex’s best friend, it’s impossible not to melt beneath Reed’s skillful touch. Now it’s just a matter of setting a few ground rules—and hoping her rule-breaking, sweet-talking bad boy agrees to follow them. But if she lets Reed into her bed, does she stand a chance of keeping him out of her heart?

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ONoTrouble_500One Night of Trouble (After Hours, #3)

No More Mr. Nice Guy…

The moment AJ Walsh sees the sexy, tattooed pixie walk up to his bar, it’s lust at first sight. He’s always been labeled the “nice” guy―opening doors, buying flowers, and never, ever having one-night stands. But with this wicked little angel with red lips and unfathomably dark eyes? Oh, yeah. Tonight, “nice” has nothing to do with it…

Brett Conlon is trying to convince her family that she’s put away her reckless wild girl side for good. Nothing―and no one―could be better for her reputation than golden boy AJ Walsh. So they make a deal: if he plays The Good Boyfriend for her family, he can be a very, very bad boy with her. Now their one naughty night is about to turn into a whole lot of trouble…

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Series Review

In One Night of Sin we meet the heroes of the series. Gage, Reed and AJ are long time friends and business partners in their club Sin.

Gage and Skyler meet at club Sin after exchanging heated looks across the floor. Actually, they met in the back alley of the club where they exchanged more than just mere looks. In that moment, their chemistry sizzled and I knew this was going to be one scorching read!

Skyler’s life revolves around her job and her studies–until that one encounter with Gage. Determined to be a bad girl she engages in a ‘no-string’ affair without expecting anything more than awesome sex with a hot guy. But Gage turned out to be a caring guy who carried the weight of the world on his shoulders.

Gage doesn’t do relationships. His past relationship ended badly and he’s convinced he’s got nothing to give to a woman other than a good time. Skylar is too sweet for the likes of him, but he can’t resist her, so he accepts her arrangement. But soon he comes to need her and the escape she provides. With Skylar, Gage can let go of his problems and just feel–something he hasn’t been able to do before now.

I loved everything about this story. The characters were intriguing, their chemistry intense and their connection was easily palpable. I especially enjoyed the mix of emotions the author brought to the page, especially since most of them came from Gage and his struggle with the feelings Skylar had awaken in him.

Of course, the sex scenes were superb. Elle Kennedy has definitely made it into my auto buy list! She brought the urgency the characters were feeling, the passion they shared for one another and the sweetness of the act once emotions came into play. I loved it! It was sexy, sensual and everything in between.

It is also in One Night of Sin that we meet Darcy, AJ’s girlfriend and the woman Reed cant’t stop thinking about. Their story takes place in the next book in the series One Night of Scandal.

Reed is considered a player. But in truth he’s just lusting after his best friend’s girlfriend. So when he sees her flirting with another guy at a club he confronts her only to find out that she and AJ had broken up already. Temptation hit him immediately, but his loyalty won out in the end and he didn’t give in into his attraction. That time.

Darcy wants a man that ignites her passionate side. She liked AJ and considers him a close friend, but there wasn’t a bit of spark in their relationship and she’s bound and determined to find it. And she does–in Reed’s arms.

I need to find me a Club Sin to hang out in because naughty, sexy things seem to take place there on a regular basis. How can a short, clothes-on interlude be so very hot?! Because Elle Kennedy wrote it, that’s why!

In Elle Kennedy’s fashion the sex was sizzling hot and very, very enjoyable. But it’s the emotions she throws into the mix what ultimately make her stories that much more worthwhile.

This time around we have a conflicted Reed fighting his feelings for a woman he’s not supposed to lust after. But for him is more than attraction and he can’t stay away. I loved Reed! He was caring and sweet and so very sexy with that filthy mouth of his.

I thought Darcy was a great partner for him. She gave as good as she got and even when she was torn between her feelings for Reed and the terms of their arrangement, she made an effort to get to know Reed better. I loved that she got to see him as more than a player and a hard edged fighter. I wanted to shake some sense into her a time or three–she was so oblivious it was ridiculous.

In any case, their story was a mix of the sweet and the hot with plenty of entertaining dialogue to complement Reed and Darcy’s explosive chemistry.

And now AJ is single and not necessarily on the prowl. He’s the boy next door, sweet and vanilla–at least that’s what he tries to portray to please his parents. But there is something about Brett that calls to him and he doesn’t think he can keep his real self hidden much longer–especially when she pushes every one of his buttons and offers him the chance to let lose with her while he pretends to be her boyfriend.

AJ, AJ, AJ. That man was hot while pretending to be the perfect gentleman, but when he allows himself to let go that man is downright steaming. He hides behind his facade, never being himself. I loved his wild side and how Darcy responded to him. She gave as good as she got, which made for some interesting scenes.

What I’ve come to enjoy about Elle Kennedy’s writing is that she infuses the story with humor, emotions and passionate moments while still keeping in the forefront the romance. AJ and Darcy’s connection was immediate and easily palpable, but I sure loved to see that connection being established as the story progressed. I enjoyed their flirty banter, their entertaining bickering and their ever-present chemistry which never failed to explode whenever they were together.

All in all, a fantastic addition to the series.

*I received a copy of this title in exchange of my honest opinion.
 

Excerpt One Night of Trouble

 

He flashed that boyish smile she was growing accustomed to. “All right. Ask me.”

She knit her brows. “Ask you what?”

“To be your pretend boyfriend. Isn’t that what this heart-to-heart has been leading to?”

Brett faltered. “Actually, I was only going to invite you to the barbecue. I figured a few days after that, I can just tell them I dumped you.”

Those green eyes sparkled. “Bullshit. They’d never believe it.”

“Why not?”

“Because I’m fucking awesome, Brett. You’d never dump me.”

“Gee, it’s good to know you don’t suffer from any confidence deficiencies.”

“Seriously, it would look too suspicious if you announce out of the blue that we broke up. Besides…” The twinkle in his eye turned to smoky promise. “We have the perfect opportunity here, and I’m not about to pass it up.”

“What opportunity?” she said slowly.

“To turn this one-night stand into a several-nights stand.”

AJ smiled again, and a dimple she hadn’t noticed before appeared in his chin. Sweet Lord, the guy was unbelievably cute.

No, he wasn’t cute. He was sexy. And she’d be lying through her teeth if she said the idea of sleeping with him again wasn’t incredibly appealing.

As if he’d read her mind, his voice grew low and husky. “You still want me as much as I want you.”

“Oh, do I?” she mocked.

“Don’t play games, angel. We both know it’s true.” He paused. “Your dad is giving you an answer at the end of the month, right?”

She nodded warily.

“That gives us three and a half weeks to keep doing what we’re doing.” There was no mistaking the reckless glint in his eyes.

“And what exactly are we doing?”

“Having fun. Making each other come.”

She ignored the hot shiver that traveled up her spine. “And then what?”

“Then your dad gives you the manager job, you tell your family we broke up, and we go our separate ways.”

Biting her lip, Brett mulled over what was beginning to sound like a solid plan—especially the sex part. Three more weeks of super-sexy naked time with this man? Sign her up.

 

About the Author

bestselling author, Elle Kennedy grew up in the suburbs of Toronto, Ontario, and holds a BA in English from York University. From an early age, she knew she wanted to be a writer and actively began pursuing that dream when she was a teenager. She loves strong heroines and sexy alpha heroes, and just enough heat and danger to keep things interesting!

Elle loves to hear from her readers. Visit her website www.ellekennedy.com or sign up for her newsletter to receive updates about upcoming books and exclusive excerpts.

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