New Release! There You Stand (Between Breaths #5) by Christina Lee *Review and Giveaway*

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There You Stand (Between Breaths #5)
by Christina Lee

An M/M Romance
From Penguin/InterMix
Released April 21st 2015

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From the author of All of You and Before You Break comes a new Between Breaths male/male standalone romance about the silent, inked up skateboarder and the tattoo artist who unravels him piece by piece…

Tattoo artist Cory Easton has worked long enough at Raw Ink to know, just by looking at a dude, what his body art reveals, what makes him tick, what even makes him scared. Until he meets the quiet and remote Jude York—so unreadable, so unreachable, and so unlike anyone else, he can’t help but arouse Cory’s curiosity.

As captivating and complex as his ink, Jude is a mystery—and Cory’s falling fast and hard under his spell. Against his better judgment to steer clear.

The rumors of Jude’s past overshadow him—whispers of prison and an unmentionable secret that’s kept him in the protective shadows of a local motorcycle club. As Cory probes deeper, he wonders how much he really wants to know. Especially since Jude has awakened something inside him that has been buried too long—and has him feeling completely alive for the first time in forever…

 

there you stand

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Review

5-stars

Ohhh this book!!!! I loved it! It was so frustrating and intriguing and HOT!

Cory is going through the motions of his life–working, spending time with his dogs, taking care of his grandmother. He’s not actively looking for a relationship, but he wouldn’t mind getting to know a certain skateboarder more closely. Ever since the stranger came to town, Cory has crushed on him hard. But the man is an enigma and Cory is about to find out he’s that and much more.

Jude is quiet–very quiet. I wouldn’t say he’s shy, he just keeps to himself a lot and once you read his story you will understand why. But let me tell you that it was frustrating as hell for me to deal with. In the beginning, Like Cory, I had been disturbed by the constant silence from Jude. And just like him, I learned to bare with it. Of course, I would have appreciated having Jude’s POV, but Cory learned Jude’s every nuance and through him I got to know Jude inside and out. And I loved what I saw!

In the last few weeks, I’ve been catching up on the series and have come to enjoy Christina Lee’s writing. I’ve loved her characters so far, but I must say these two are my favorites. I loved Jude’s complexity–his quiet side, his passionate nature and his caring and protective ways. Cory was fun, more outgoing and laid back, which made him a great partner for Jude. I loved them together. They complemented each other both physically and emotionally. I appreciated their growth throughout the story which led them to explore and accept what was growing between them.

Like I said, this pairing was hot. Jude and Cory shared an intense chemistry which was always present in their every interaction. But more than that, they managed to establish and deepen their connection along the way. Stolen touches, meaningful looks or just plain standing facing each other, their connection was a present entity and undeniable.

Keep in mind that although this is the fifth book in the series, it is completely a stand alone story. Yes, I played catch-up with the series but only because I’m wired that way. And even then, I still have one book to go. M/M Romance is my favorite genre and I just could NOT wait to start this story, so I went against my nature and skipped book 4.

All in all, a sweet yet intense romantic story about second chances in life and finding true love.

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

 

Excerpt

“Come inside, please.”

I followed him through the door, telling myself it was only to get Chopper acclimated. But Chopper seemed right at home as he bound to the kitchen and lapped at the water in the dish that Jude had set down.

“I can’t stay long,” I said, feeling almost shy, like it was my first time at his place. “I have a shift at Raw Ink.”

He nodded. “I just finished my morning at the Board Room, but I’ll be heading to the skate park.”

“What was that one trick I saw you practicing the other day?” I asked, watching Chopper sniff around the room.

“Hmmm . . . the one-eighty pop shuvit?” he said, shrugging. “The one I really want to trick out on someday is the upside-down three-sixty loop. But I need a pipe for that. They’ll have one at the arena for the upcoming games.”

“A pipe?”

“A curved wall with a lip so that I can hang upside down.”

“Holy Christ, you’re going to maim yourself,” I said.

He laughed. “It’s a difficult trick but I’m definitely up for the challenge.”

Suddenly he grabbed my face and backed me against the wall, kissing me hard and deep and desperate. Like he was releasing it all—giving it all to me. “I don’t want to talk right now. I want to taste you.”

I groaned and wormed my body closer, reaching behind him to grab his ass. We were both instantly hard and he ground his hips against me.

“Every damn night I’ve dreamt of you,” he said against my lips.

I pulled back to look at him. “You have?”

“Oh yeah.” His gaze fastened on mine. “I knew I couldn’t have you, so the next best thing was the fantasy of you.”

“Same here,” I said. “I’d lay in bed and jerk off to thoughts of you.”

He panted against my mouth. “What did you think about?”

“This,” I said. “Your hands on me, your lips all over my body.”

“God,” he groaned. “And here you are. Right in front of me. And I want nothing more than to have all of that and more with you.”

He backed me down the hallway, yanking off my shirt and unbuttoning my pants.

It felt so urgent, like we were running out of time. Not only because I had a job to get to, but also because I never felt certain of how many more days we might have left.

“I need to touch you,” he said, hemming my thighs against the bed, and forcing me to lean back.

 

gay love on the bench.Autumn in the park

 

Between Breaths series

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All of You (Between Breaths, #1)
Before You Break (Between Breaths, #2)
Whisper To Me (Between Breaths, #3)
Promise Me This (Between Breaths, #4)

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About the Author

Mother, wife, reader, dreamer. Christina lives in the Midwest with her husband and son–her two favorite guys.

She’s addicted to lip gloss and salted caramel everything. She believes in true love and kissing, so writing romance novels has become a dream job.

Author of the Between Breaths series from Penguin. ALL OF YOU, BEFORE YOU BREAK, WHISPER TO ME and PROMISE ME THIS available now. Book five in the series, THERE YOU STAND, coming in April, 2015.

Also, her Adult Contemporary Romance, TWO OF HEARTS is releasing on May 5th, 2015.

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Whisper to Me (Between Breaths #3) by Christina Lee *Review*

Whisper to Me Book Cover Whisper to Me
Between Breaths #3
Christina Lee
New Adult
Penguin--Intermix
May 20th 2014
eBook
NetGalley

A hot and consuming New Adult romance about a wayward musician and the one girl who keeps him grounded…

At college, Rachel has a reputation for being a sarcastic flirt with a thing for star athletes. No one at school knows that she’d had her heart ripped to shreds by her high school sweetheart, who’d driven them both off the side of the road on a borrowed motorcycle, and then abandoned her. No one knows the real Rachel Mattson—except one person…

Ever since he helped nurse his sister’s feisty best friend back to health, pierced bass player Kai Nakos has been head over heels in love. But the supposed bad boy can’t risk letting Rachel know the truth—especially now that the two of them are back in their hometown for the summer, together for the first time since the months following that fateful night. Never mind that Rachel’s ex is back, groveling for her forgiveness.

Shaken by her ex’s return, Rachel finds herself turning to the one guy she knows she can trust. Kai is willing to hide his feelings for her, just to have Rachel touch him again. After all, this is only a temporary fling. Until it becomes something more. But maybe it had been more all along.

3.75 stars

I’m still conflicted about this story so I went to middle ground and gave it 3 stars. I loved some aspects of it, but had problems with other elements too.

Rachel went away to college and reinvented herself. She has a bit of a reputation, especially since her focus lies on the jocks at school. But now she’s back home during break and can’t help but feel lost. Thankfully, she has her childhood friends to provide some comfort. But with Kai’s presence in comes the feelings she has managed to keep hidden all this time–she loves him more than as a friend and wants him as a lover.

Kai has returned home to work on his career. A musician whose reputation as a player keeps in trouble, Kai is not the kind of guy he wants all of us to believe he is. Yes, he sleeps around. But his heart belongs to Rachel. He may appear to be unfocused but his mind is in his music. Unfortunately, now he has to try to work on his future while being distracted by the one woman that means the world to him.

Kai, Kai, Kai. *sigh* What can I say? I loved him. He was sweet and caring, a dirty talker and so very sexy. I appreciated the chance to get to know him and I came to love him even more as the story progressed and he showed more of his true self. On the other hand, Rachel was harder for me to connect with. Thankfully, the author made a great job of developing her throughout the story. She was a mess of emotions and thoughts but as the story moved on and she started to know herself better I came to see the real Rachel and not the facade she had constructed of herself.

Like I mentioned before, I am conflicted with the story. I liked the romance which showcased a lot of intimate moments and highlighted how deeply connected Kai and Rachel truly were. I also enjoyed the concept behind the story and how the author went about bringing it to the page. The writing was very good and the development of the characters was a constant throughout the story. My problem lies with the beginning and the end.

For me the pace of the story dragged at the beginning. I attributed this somewhat to Rachel because she was a mess at the time and her thoughts tended to stray and repeat. But in truth, there were a lot of thoughts, facts and issues thrown out which led to a whole lot of telling with not much showing on the author’s part. I would have appreciated a few flashbacks to accompany these moments. I think it would have helped a lot with the flow of the story.

Another problem was the end. After investing so much time in Kai and Rachel’s story, especially after the slow beginning, I would have liked for the ending to include another chapter or an epilogue of sorts. i just felt like everything was wrapped up to fast and too nicely after everything they went through.

But even with those issues, I still think that the story is worth reading. It was sweet at times and hot throughout. I liked the mix of emotions with the intense physical attraction–it made for a very enticing read!

Keep in mind that although this is the third book in the Between Breaths series it can be read a stand alone. I do recommend reading the first two book simply because they were great reads in their own right.

 

Between Breaths series

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All of You (Between Breaths, #1)
Before You Break (Between Breaths, #2)
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Tour: Stupid Boy (Stupid in Love #2) by Cindy Miles *Guest Post and Giveaway*

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Stupid Boy (Stupid in Love #2)
by Cindy Miles

A New Adult Novel
Released February 17th 2015

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From Cindy Miles, bestselling new adult author of STUPID GIRL, comes the next installment of her blockbuster Stupid in Love series – STUPID BOY.

Brax Jenkins and Olivia Beaumont are the most envied couple at Winston University—but the so-called “virginity dare,” orchestrated by Brax’s old fraternity, almost tore them apart. Now, a new dare is taking shape, and it’s sure to set emotions ablaze–more than ever before.

Winston’s “It Girl” Harper Belle isn’t just president of the Deltas–she’s also a master at keeping her ugly past a secret. So, when the Kappas’ dare hits closer to home for her more than anyone realizes, she devises a competition of her own as payback. Three sorority sisters will seek out a notorious womanizer on campus and–unbeknownst their “mark”–secretly train him to be the perfect boyfriend. Always up for a challenge, Harper targets the biggest player she can find: Brax’s wickedly handsome foster brother Kane McCarthy.

But, Harper discovers there’s much more to Kane than girls, games, and partying. His easy smile belies the quiet, old soul reflected in his deep brown eyes. All it takes is one night, one secret laid bare, and one kiss from Kane to shift Harper’s world on its axis. Suddenly, the girl who’s always walked a straight and narrow path can’t think of anything else except losing control.

 

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Guest Post – The Ideal Hero

Creating the ideal hero each time an author writes a story is definitely a challenge. A fun challenge, but still. Just think. The author not only has to make him stand out, but be different than the other heroes she/he has created. But what really makes an ideal hero? As readers we all have different views on that! As authors, too.

For me, it’s all about characterization, and how each hero fits perfectly with his heroine. For instance, if you were to take two bowls, write down the names of heroes and heroines of your favorite books on individual pieces of paper, fold them up, throw the girls in one bowl and the boys in another and toss them around a bit—then start rando-picking names, would the heroes and heroines match up? As in, would BRAX from Stupid Girl match as perfectly with HARPER from STUPID BOY as he did with OLIVIA? Absolutely not. Think about some of your favorite heroes and heroines, then scramble them all up. They wouldn’t be as effective or as memorable. To me, anyway.

So I try to change things up. When I create one hero, I try to create a new one on the opposite end of the spectrum. Sort of. LOL! Take Brax Jenkins and Kane McCarthy. I knew going in to Stupid Boy that I wanted Kane to be different from Brax. You can create a strong bad boy character without him being loud and in-your-face bad ass. Kane to me is that perfect sort of quiet storm. I wanted him to be strong, protective, but in a silent-but-deadly sort of way.  With Brax, from Stupid Girl, he is all that but also wears his heart on his sleeve when it comes to his heroine. He puts it all out there for everyone to see. Kane is more reserved, but don’t for a second think he won’t step in and do what needs to be done to make sure his girl is safe. He just does it with less…drama. Very few words. When he speaks, every word means something. I really liked that about Kane.

All in all, creating the ideal hero can come in many forms, and I think the best way to create that is by characterization first. Discover who his perfect heroine is 🙂

 

 

Stupid in Love Series

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Stupid Girl (Stupid in Love #1)
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About the Author

Cindy

National bestselling author Cindy Miles writes edgy romance, ranging from contemporary love stories to sexy paranormals. A native of southern coastal Georgia, she loves reading (naturally), baking swoon-worthy desserts, traveling abroad, yoga, and classic rock. The cover for her upcoming New Adult romance, STUPID GIRL, was featured on USA Today’s Happily Ever After blog. In the novel, a volatile mix of bad boys, sassy smart girls, dark secrets, and red-hot romance add up to one wild ride through college.

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Related Articles–My Reviews

Before You Break (Between Breaths #2) by Christina Lee * Review and Excerpt*

Before You Break Book Cover Before You Break
Between Breaths #2
Christina Lee
New Adult
Penguin - Intermix
February 18th 2014
eBook
NetGalley

A sexy, emotional New Adult romance about a bad boy on the edge and a good girl about to lose control…

The star catcher of the college baseball team isn’t supposed to have skeletons in his closet. But Daniel Quinn is hiding a guilty past so dark he refuses to let anyone get close. Except there’s something about gorgeous, studious Ella Abrams that goes beyond the electric attraction between them—something that makes him want to open up.

Ella has suffered enough heartache and guilt to fill one of her psychology textbooks, but she keeps that part of herself hidden behind a bubbly exterior. Until she receives an anonymous call while working the suicide helpline and the voice on the other end touches something inside of her that she can’t ignore.

Soon Ella and Quinn’s physical connection heats up, even as their deep and revealing hotline talks intensify. But by the time Ella realizes that her seductive jock and her sensitive caller are the same guy, it might be too late to save him—or to stop herself from falling too far.

*A companion novel to ALL OF YOU

This story was a mix of angsty drama and sweet romance.

We have Ella a college student volunteering at a suicide hotline as a means to make amends with the guilt she feels in regards to her brother’s suicide. It is during one of her shifts that she picks up a call from a conflicted young man who sounds like the weight of the world is on his shoulders and is ready to give up on life. Thankfully, she manages to talk him back from the edge but now she can’t seem to forget about him.

Daniel Quinn is a star athlete. He has everything going for him–looks, money, brains and popularity. But underneath that facade is a young man drowning in guilt and leading the life that’s expected of him. When life comes to be too much he reaches out to the suicide hotline.To his surprise he gets to talk to a caring young woman who seems to understand his situation, giving him a bit of hope if only for the time being.

I enjoyed this story very much. Although a bit predictable in how it played out, I enjoyed the dynamic between Ella and Dylan. I particularly enjoyed the intense chemistry that exited between them and how hard they fought against it. This gave them a chance to connect on a deeper level. Their friendship evolved slowly and their interactions ranged from the more candid to the most intense. I loved it!

Although this is the second book in the series it can be read as a stand alone. I liked visiting with Avery and Bennett from All of You and seeing how far they had come in their relationship. But honestly, Quinn and Ella’s story held all of my attention.

All in all, a sweet yet emotional story about loss, grief and moving on while finding love in the process.

 

Excerpt

I heard the screen door creak open at the top of the stairs, letting in a sliver of sunlight. Ella came bounding down the steps wringing out her tank top, too busy to notice me. She stood in front of the bathroom door and lifted her wet shirt over her head. I saw the smooth skin of her back, her delicate neckline, and how the baby hairs from her bun had gotten tangled in the knot of her black bikini top.

All I could think about was sliding my hand down the soft skin above her shorts, on the small of her back. I stepped closer and cleared my throat so she’d know she wasn’t alone.

She turned toward me, eyes wide.

“My bad,” I said, my voice coming out hoarse. “Sorry if I scared you.”

Her tits looked fucking amazing in that bikini top and I couldn’t help my jaw from

hanging open as I tried to reign in my dirty thoughts.

She stood stock-still as my eyes roamed over her body.

Like she welcomed it. Wanted it. Needed it.

Her breaths became harsher and when my eyes met hers, she held me there, transfixed. I couldn’t have looked anywhere else even if I’d tried.

“You always seem to catch me in some state of undress,” she mumbled.

I moved nearer and noticed how water had beaded in her cleavage. I imagined my tongue lapping up each drop and my hard-on strained against my zipper.

“I’m not much better this time,” I said referring to my shirtless torso and wet cutoffs.

Her eyes skated over my shoulders, down my chest, to the front of my shorts. If she hadn’t had a clue how much she’d affected me, she would now.

Gazes pinned on each other, we both seemed to lose the ability to form coherent sentences. I was close enough to draw her into my arms and kiss the hell out of her, but I restrained myself.

The air between us was charged. It was obvious and imposing. My knees quivered as my urge to hold her amplified. To press my nose along her collarbone and taste her skin.

Ella was biting her lip so hard, I wondered if she’d draw blood.

Looking into her bright-blue eyes, I noticed her dark and thick lashes, the pretty rose color splashed across her cheeks, and the dainty hoop earrings she wore in her ears.

Both of our fists clenched tight, it was as if time stood still. Waiting on something to happen. For one of us to make a move. For someone to walk in and spot us huddled so closely together.

My own breaths were broken and rough and all at once Ella squeezed her eyes

closed and inhaled sharply.

“Ella…” I closed the distance between us and placed my fingers on her warm arm. “Are you…”

I didn’t even know what I was asking. I was lost in her earthy smell, her soft skin beneath my touch, and her lips, moist because she had run her tongue across them.

I noticed how her nipples had pebbled beneath her swim top.

“Do you want . . .” I skimmed my hand up her shoulder to the nape of her neck and she shivered against my touch. She gazed into my eyes and took firm breaths through her nose.

“Say something, Ella,” I mumbled.

She shook her head and then slid her fingers to my waist. Her hands felt like they were on fire and my skin prickled like it might burst into flames.

The anticipation of this moment coiled tight in my stomach as I glided my hip against hers and pinned her to the wall. I was sure she could feel how aroused I was through the thin material of my shorts.

A moan tumbled from her mouth and her head fell back against the brick wall.

I leaned forward and dragged my nose along her jawline, resisting the urge to lick her skin. When I pulled back, the burning desire in her eyes was as palpable as mine.

I knew I shouldn’t take this any further. And I figured she knew it as well.

But now I understood without question that she wanted me. And, fuck, I wanted her.

 

Between Breaths series

17838603

All of You (Between Breaths, #1)
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Cover Reveal: A Good Family Man (Corbin’s Bend Season Three #8) by Thianna Durston *Excerpt + Giveaway*

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A Good Family Man (Corbin’s Bend Season Three #8)
by Thianna Durston

An M/M Contemporary Romance
From Blushing Books
Expected for Release August 6th 2015

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Jack Carmichael’s natural instinct is to take care of people. In his job as a U.S. Marshal, he has done that for 25 years. Unfortunately, being married to his job has left his love life in tatters. Now classified unfit for duty, he retires and comes home to Colorado to figure things out. Dominant and used to taking control like his brother Brent, he has never been interested in spanking. Until a cute Nurse Practitioner catches his attention.

Josh Martin feels lucky. He’s not only accepted into Corbin’s Bend, but he’ll be working at the brand new Corbin’s Bend Medical Clinic as its only Nurse Practitioner. At thirty-two, he figures this is his last-ditch attempt at finding a dominant partner who isn’t abusive. He finds more than his share of dominant men in Corbin’s Bend, not the least of which are the Carmichael brothers. Brent’s dominance is both comforting and unnerving, Jack’s turns him on.

Josh is unlike any submissive male Jack has encountered and when the younger man asks him out, he decides to give it a go. One day of fun turns into two, three…until Jack, with more failed relationships than he can count in his past and unsure he can be the head of house Josh needs, leaves, burying himself once again in work. Forced to see the error of his decision, he puts aside the worries that have plagued him for months and returns to Corbin’s Bend. To become the good family man he wants to be, he has to earn back Josh’s trust and truly take on a role he’s never considered before: head of a loving discipline household.

 

Excerpt

Hell, the man was good looking as it was, but with what he was wearing, he should be illegal. He looked like one of those sexy cowboy posters dressed in dark black jeans with a dark red button down shirt and a cowboy hat on. No, he couldn’t fault them, but he could show them who Jack was with.

Hopping out of his car and locking it, he quickly strode forward just as three women who looked to be headed toward Phil’s paused and stalked toward Jack. “I’m here!” he called to get his date’s notice. As Jack turned to look at him, a wonderfully feral smile that was also somehow warm crossed the man’s face and he straightened up and took a step toward him. Instantly all three women pouted, though none of them walked away yet.

Josh paused as Jack’s eyes travelled down his body, his feral smile increasing. A whooshing filled his ears as his heartbeat took off and at this moment, Josh hoped the man would devour him then and there. Fuck Phil’s. He had lube.

 

About the Author

Thianna loves to write strong stories with even stronger heroes. While all of her books have an erotic overtone, it is the story that is the most important to her. “The story should be able to stand on its own. The erotic elements are an add-on.”

She enjoys writing about couples with kink, paranormal couples, and straight out strangeness. But more on that later…

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Tour: Forever Red by Carina Adams *Review, Excerpt & Giveaway*

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Forever Red
by Carina Adams

A Contemporary Romance
Released April 10, 2015

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Not afraid to speak his mind or make a scene, Nathaniel Kelly has made a name for himself as country music’s ultimate bad boy.
Covered in tattoos, singing songs about drugs, drinking and heartache, Nate acts more like an out of control rock star than the grandson of one of the genres most influential and legendary stars. Every man wants to be him. Every woman wants just one night with the hard-rocking country rebel.

Except me. I just want to know that the boy I used to love is happy and that I didn’t break his heart in vain. That’s why I buy every magazine that even mentions his name; at least, that’s the story I tell myself.

When my friends gave me a birthday present any fan would die for, I was suddenly face-to-face with the man I never thought I’d see again. My body wasn’t supposed to react to him the way it did. And, Nate sure as hell wasn’t supposed to look at me the way he used to.

Can someone you loved as a teenager really have a hold on your heart twelve years later? Is it ever too late to say you’re sorry and make up for past wrongs? I’m about to find out.

 

Forever Red Cover
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Review

4 stars

This story was such a wonderful surprise–a sweet second chance romance where the characters fight their circumstances, their emotions and unexpectedly find their their happily ever after.

The story takes us from the very beginning of Lia and Nate’s first meeting all the way through to the moment they run into each other years after being separated. From there the author takes us into another type of journey where Lia and Nate try to come to terms with what happened 12 years before and deal with the flow of emotions brought after seeing each other again.

Initially I had trouble connecting with Lia. I thought she wasn’t worth Nate’s attention. But as the story progressed and I came to see that most of what she put out was a front and not the real her, I came to like her and understand where she was coming from. Nate brought out the best in her and her growth showed throughout the story. She still managed to get on my nerves, but I cheered her on regardless.

Nate was a bit too good to be true. As a teenager, he was kind, caring and way too sweet (in my opinion). Fast forward 12 years later and we find a jaded Nate. As lead singer for his band he has everything he could ever want and leads the life of a typical celebrity–parties every night and girls all around him. He appeared ‘closed-off’, not as easily swayed. This time around he was cautious of getting hurt again, but I admired the fact that he allowed himself the chance to reconnect with Lia regardless.

This is the first book I’ve read by Carina Adams and I don’t expect it to be the last. I enjoyed her writing, especially the mix of elements she brought to the page. I found the characters to be complex but not difficult to understand and the emotions were present and portrayed by both characters accordingly without weighing down the story.

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

 

Excerpt

“I told the reporter that I had a girlfriend. And just so we’re all on the same page, that’s you. You’re my girlfriend.”

“Oh, really? Aren’t you supposed to ask me or something? I mean, if we’re going to act twelve, we should go all out.”

“Baby girl, I’m Nate Kelly. You should just be on your knees, thanking God right now that you get to call yourself my girlfriend.”

“I’m concerned about your lack of self-esteem. You really need to learn how to love yourself despite all your flaws.”

“Okay, smartass. I’ve gotta go. I’ll call you later.”

“Bye, boyfriend.”

I laughed as I hung up, turning to find Rebel and Boone staring at me. “Girlfriend?” the latter choked out around a laugh. Charlie “Boone” Boone, could play anything with keys and the way he played the piano made people stop and listen. But he was an ass that would cling to whatever weakness he could find. “Did I just hear you say the word girlfriend?”

 

FR teaser 5

 

About the Author

Carina

Carina Adams has been writing and creating characters for as long as she can remember, allowing her to fall in love with the next man of her dreams with every new story.

Thankfully, fate stepped in and granted her the ultimate wish – a life full of men. Carina lives in a picturesque New England town with her husband, the one man that ruined the thought of all others, and two amazing sons that always keep her on her toes.

When she isn’t trying to juggle being a working mom with karate and football practices, surprising her children with her sci-fi movie knowledge, or writing, you can find her with her nose pressed against her kindle in search of her new favorite vampire story, training for a 5k, or laughing with friends.

Carina loves to hear feedback from her readers. You can email her at: carinaadamswrites@gmail.com

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Tour: Only Trick by Jewel E. Ann *Review, Excerpt and Giveaway*

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Only Trick
by Jewel E. Ann

A Contemporary Romance
Released April 13th 2015

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Don’t Look Back in Anger”

In one night, I lost five years of my life. Here’s what I know …
I was homeless.
I’m a recovering drug addict.
My inked skin crawls from lustful eyes.
I have a serious aversion to women.
My gay partner is a home wrecker.
I own a gun and I’m a damn good shot.
I’m a makeup artist, but it’s an insult to my talent.
I’ve never wanted to possess anything except my Ducati… until I met Darby.

Now here’s what I know since that day in the ER when she pieced me back together… nothing—but a few random thoughts.

My new “friend” is distracting, clingy, and obsessed with acronyms, emojis, and phrases like “breakfast soul mates.”

I didn’t want to like her, but she crawled under my skin and swallowed me whole. Now we’re best friends and she’s my new addiction. I’d drink her from a shot glass, snort her up my nose, or inject her into my veins if I could. What I won’t do… is ever tell her that.

She doesn’t know me… I don’t know me. When those missing years come back, I think she will hate me… I think I will hate me.

My parents named me Patrick Roth, and this is my story.

 

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Review
5-stars

Holy squirrels Batman! Unlike any other book I’ve read lately. Trick, Trick, Trick…so much more than I expected. So hot, so sweet…I’m still processing!

I really don’t know what I can share with you about this book without giving too much away, so I’ll just highlight some of my favorite elements.

Trick and Darby–What a pair! Darby has been living a lie. She goes through the motions of her life doing what is expected of her and dating who she’s supposed too. She’s not unhappy per se, but she’s not exactly bursting with joy in every aspect of her life. Then in comes Trick–the perfect squirrel! He’s mysterious with an aura of danger and the very man that pushes all those buttons she had once given up on.

Trick is lost–that’s the only word that comes to mind when I think about him before he met Darby. He had an accident that left him with a 5-year gap of memory loss. He’s quiet, keeps to himself and does everything he can NOT to draw attention to himself. But once Darby enters his life everything turns upside down. Her quirky attitude drives him up the wall, but he can’t help himself but to be drawn to her. Soon these two find themselves being the best of friends, which leads to so much more.

Kudos to Jewel E. Ann for bringing forth one hell of an intriguing story. This convoluted storyline had me gripping the hell out of my tabet and tap-tap-tapping the hell out of it just to find out what the hell was coming next. There were twist and turns, highs and lows and everything in between. And like the sucker I am I devoured it all in one sitting.

Unlike any other book I’ve read in the past few months, Trick and Darby’s story was packed full of excitement, frustration and anticipation. There were loving sighs, angry groans and various moments of laughing out loud and even some tears. These were just some of MY reactions.

Both Trick and Darby ran the full gamut of emotions. Darby struggled with her attraction to Trick and the feelings his constant presence brought about. She questioned, analyzed, hesitated and came to accept him in every way. Meanwhile, Trick was the quiet sort trying to keep his distance and failing miserably. I enjoyed them together as friends and loved them as a couple even more.

Of course Darby and Trick’s connection and chemistry were a force to be reckoned with. They clicked in every way and watching as that initial connection grew and strengthened as the story progressed was a treat for me to read. I loved the passion that flared between them, their banter and bickering and their candid moments and honest moments of just being together. Every single interaction served to bring their connection to the surface and cement my belief that these two were perfect for each other.

These a just some of the concepts that stood out the most for me, but I can’t keep on writing without divulging too much. Trust when I say that this book was awesome and it is worth much more than what I could possibly express in words.

All in all, a fantastic read with a special space on my ‘Favorites’ shelf.

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

 

Excerpt

“Ahh!” I scream as the closet door opens. My heart explodes and I nearly wet myself. I shuffle my feet against the floor, scooting as far in the corner as I can, hugging my knees to my chest.

“Come.”

I shake my head, holding my breath.

His lip twitches. Then, with what can only be described as a scene from a horror movie, he grabs my ankles and drags… he fucking drags me out of the closet. “Trick!”

Hoisting me over his shoulder, he smacks my ass so hard I yelp. “I’m thinking sofa.”

“Trick! Stop!” I scream, kicking and flailing as he carries me downstairs. As I pound my fists against his back, something catches my eyes. He has the ties to both my satin and terrycloth robes partially tucked into the waistband of his shorts along with one of his belts.

OH SHIT!

He sets me down with my ass backed up to the sofa, my chest heaving, eyes wide.

“Do you love me?”

I swallow and nod.

“Do you trust me?”

My gaze falters.

“Darby?” He lifts my chin with his finger.

“Do. You. Trust. Me?”

Another swallow, another nod.

“Good.” He lifts my yoga top over my head, wetting his lips as he stares at my breasts. Then he pulls down my pants, leaving me naked. His lips skim up my legs, stopping at my sex, but all he does is just breathe out causing my legs to pinch closer together. Then he inhales. Standing, he watches me—daring me to run again.

 

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About the Author

www.annajon.es
Jewel is a free-spirited romance junkie with a quirky sense of humor.

Jewel is a free-spirited romance junkie with a quirky sense of humor.

With 10 years of flossing lectures under her belt, she took early retirement from her dental hygiene career to stay home with her three awesome boys and manage the family business.

After her best friend of nearly 30 years suggested a few books from the Contemporary Romance genre, Jewel was hooked. Devouring two and three books a week but still craving more, she decided to practice sustainable reading, AKA writing.

When she’s not donning her cape and saving the planet one tree at a time, she enjoys yoga with friends, good food with family, rock climbing with her kids, watching How I Met Your Mother reruns, and of course…heart-wrenching, tear-jerking, panty-scorching novels.

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Series Review Tour: Ricochet by Heather C. Leigh *Review, Excerpt and Giveaway*

series review tour - Extraction point

Ricochet Serial
by Heather C. Leigh

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Rick “Ricochet” Brennan served eight years as an elite Marine special ops Force Recon soldier. After an injury, and the terrible memories from that night, he retires and goes to work for his former Command Officer, Howard “Mack” McEvoy, at his training center in Atlanta.

Sanctum MMA appears on the surface to be a normal gym, training elite fighters to be the best. Except each trainer, hand-picked by Mack, possesses a special background that allows Mack to run one of the best-kept secrets in the country.

When twenty-four year old Quinn Wallace finally escapes her abusive husband, she turns to her father’s old Marine Corps buddy, Mack, for help. Broken and skittish, Quinn finds herself surrounded by large, intimidating men— men who could easily overpower her. She avoids them the best she can, but when Rick turns out to be more than just a rough fighter with bruised knuckles, she finds herself wondering if she can allow herself to trust again.

Ricochet is a full-length novel to be released as three parts.

***This book contains hot sweaty men, sexy scenes for those over 18, and uncomfortable, sometimes violent scenes.***

ricochet series.

Ricochet:  Locked & Loaded
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Ricochet:  Friendly Fire
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Ricochet: Extraction Point
Amazon US | Amazon UK

 

Review

3-5 stars

3.50 stars

As the blurb states Ricochet is a full-length novel released as three parts. Locked & Loaded, the first part of the novel, introduces us to Marine Force Recon Rick ‘Ricochet’ Brennan who was forced to retire and now works as an operative for the covert organization within the Sanctum MMA gym. His reputation as a player never mattered to him and he had no problem living up to his nickname–until he met Quinn. Instantly drawn to the troubled young woman, soon Rick finds himself conflicted over the feeling Quinn manages to arise in him.

Quinn is not looking for a relationship. She just managed to escape from an abusive relationship and falling for another man is not something she was considering any time soon. However, Rick’s charming personality and protective tendencies have her considering giving him a chance. Now she just needs to get over Rick’s reputation and put her past to rest.

As the first installment in the ‘serial’, Locked & Loaded does a good job of establishing the characters, their individual stories and the overall conflict.

I found Rick to be an interesting character and would have loved to learn more about him. I appreciated the author’s effort in showing how conflicted he was in regards to his feelings towards Quinn, but I felt like I really didn’t get to know him as an individual. He was strong, caring and protective, but he had issues that I felt were not dealt with.

Quinn was also a great character to get to know. I admired her strong will and her determination to move on from her past. I did want to shake some sense into her a time or three, but I did understand where she was coming from. She had doubts and was scared on her how deeply Rick affected her and after learning her past I could understand her erratic behavior.

One element of the story I found lacking was a connection between Rick and Quinn. Yes, they were attracted to each other but most of the time they spent together was ‘off screen’. I would have appreciated a lot more showing than telling. I believe that this took away my chance to truly experience how Rick and Quinn had become close during their time spent together, which ultimately affected my enjoyment of the story. At least in regards to Rick and Quinn having a believable romance. And that cliffhanger didn’t help any!!!

Thankfully, I had the second installment uploaded on my tablet so I was able to keep on reading to find out how these two would come to work their issues out. In Friendly Fire we find Quinn taking those last steps to take back her life. She’s determined to put her past behind her and recognizes that the only way she can ever move on and start a new life is by completely putting her past behind her. However, she has not confided in Rick as to what her past entails and is foolish enough to think that she can do it on her own. Grrr!

Needless to say that Rick doesn’t take Quinn’s actions lightly. He’s hurt, confused and acting without thinking. His head is not where it should be and he gets hurt on a mission. Feeling betrayed and not understanding what the hell is happening, Rick keeps his distance from Quinn on her return to town but this time around Quinn is not to be deterred and confronts him. But just as things are looking up, everything comes crashing down on Rick and Quinn’s world.

This installment was an interesting mix of brooding alpha male, confused emotions and a whole lot of miscommunication. Truly, I was over the drama and ready to throttle them both! But…I was already invested in the story and wanting to see what the future had in store for these two so I kept on reading. It helped that Rick and Quinn’s interactions were brought to the page and not glossed over like in the previous installment. There weren’t many of them, but the ones that took place were honest, intense and showcased their connection. Finally!

Of course, this one ended in another cliffhanger and a mighty one at that!

So I went ahead onto Extraction Point, the last installment in the serial. Quinn’s past has come back to claim her, but she’s not that same woman she was has is determined to confront it head on. Meanwhile, Rick is out of his mind with worry. Clueless as to what the hell in going on but determined to save the woman he loves, Rick goes on a rampage until he finds what he’s looking for. The incident brings Quinn and Rick closer together but their future is still uncertain as long as her past isn’t put to rest.

I believe that this is the best part of the serial. It not only showcases how far Quinn and Rick have come in their relationship but also how far they have come as individuals. Quinn has grown more confident and has allowed Rick into her life fully. Rick is as protective as ever, but just as loving and understanding. He learns to compromise and allow Quinn the space she needs while still confident of what they have together.

Although I enjoyed this installment the best, I found the romance element lacking in places and the resolution of the conflict failing in its execution. At this point I don’t think I could have been convinced in regards to the romance since it was something that had bothered me from the very beginning. Still I came to overlook it because the story as a whole was interesting, especially once the villain appeared and the conflict reached its peak. Again, my problem was that there was a whole lot of telling and not a lot of showing. I would have preferred to be IN on the action rather than have been told how it all went down.

In any case, Ricochet was an entertaining story with an interesting set of characters.

*I received a copy of these titles in exchange of my honest opinion.

 

Excerpt–Extraction Point

“Hey,” he said calmly. “Why aren’t you resting?” Rick put his hands on her shoulders, gently massaging her arms.

Quinn’s eyes grew large and went to his gloved hands.

Fuck, she hates fighting. Now I know why she looks freaked out.

Rick yanked his hands away and took a step back. “I didn’t mean for you to see me fight, Quinn. I’m sorry.”

To his surprise, Quinn stepped forward, closing the distance Rick had put between them. He watched as she hesitantly lifted her arms, placing her hands on his sweat-slicked chest. Her eyes met his and his breath left in a sharp huff. The fear he had expected to see wasn’t there. No… Quinn’s eyes were dark and glistening with lust.

“I didn’t know that watching you fight would be so comforting. It makes me feel safe, and… turned on,” she murmured. Rick shivered as her hands ran down his torso, moving over each defined muscle until they were resting on either side of his waist.

“Turned on?” Rick swallowed, barely able to speak with Quinn touching him like that. She was only just about healed from the attack. He figured it would be months, if not longer before she’d be interested in pursuing anything physical.

“Yes, turned on.” Quinn’s fingers dug into Rick’s waist, her thumbs making small circles on the ‘v’ shaped ridges of his lower abs. Scorching waves of pleasure rippled down his spine, instantly making his cock come to life.

“Jesus,” he muttered softly. Using every last bit of willpower he had, Rick captured Quinn’s wrists, removing her hands from his body. “Not here, doll.” He glanced around, but none of the other fighters were looking their way. Still, he’d kill them if they saw the lust in Quinn’s eyes. That was for him, and him alone.

Quinn pouted, crossing her arms and glaring like a kid denied her favorite candy.

He couldn’t help himself. The sight of this tiny thing trying to look intimidating was funny. Rick laughed. “You’re too much, doll.” The corner of her mouth twitched up—it was just a hint of a smile, but it made Rick’s day. Quinn hadn’t smiled once since his team rescued her. Seeing some of her personality coming back flooded him with emotion.

 

extraction point teaser 2

 

About the Author

heather c leigh bio

After growing up in New England, I currently live just outside Atlanta, GA.

I love the Red Sox and hate the Yankees.

I love hot, sexy romance novels, but hate long, drawn out misunderstandings as a plot line.

I love book series, but hate cliffhangers.

I love alpha males, but hate when they borderline on abusive.

Mostly? I love love love chocolate.

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Tour: Wedding Favors (Bluewater Bay #7) by Anne Tenino *Giveaway*

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Wedding Favors (Bluewater Bay #7)
by Anne Tenino

An M/M Romance
From Riptide Publishing
Released April 13th 2015

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Lucas Wilder’s best friend is a traitor. First, Audrey moved back to their hick-infested hometown, Bluewater Bay, and now she’s marrying a local. His own brother, in fact. And as her Man of Honor, Lucas gets coerced into returning for an extended stay. Although, between his unfaithful ex-boyfriend and his artist’s block, going home isn’t the worst thing that could happen. Even if the Best Man is Gabriel Savage, Lucas’s first crush, first hookup, and first heartbreak.

The only reason Gabe hasn’t been waiting for Lucas to return to Bluewater Bay is because he never thought it’d happen. Not that it matters now that Lucas is back—Gabe’s still a logger who’s never been anywhere (Canada doesn’t count), and Lucas is now a famous sculptor who’s been everywhere twice. Plus, there’s that shared past.

When Audrey asks Lucas to make her wedding favors, the only place to set up a kiln is at Gabe’s tree farm. Soon, they pick up where they left off twelve years before, then blow past it, discovering why neither of them forgot the other. Now they have to choose how much of their history they’ll repeat, and what future they’ll make together.

 
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About the Author

Catalyzed by her discovery of LGBTQ romance, Anne Tenino left the lucrative fields of art history, non-profit fundraising, and domestic engineering to follow her dream of become a starving romance author. For good or ill, her snarky, silly, quasi-British sense of humor came along for the ride.
Anne applies her particular blend of romance, comedy and gay protagonists to contemporary, scifi and paranormal tales. Her works have won awards, she’s been featured in RT Book Reviews, and has achieved bestseller status on Amazon’s gay romance list.

Born and raised in Oregon, Anne lives in Portland with her husband and two kids, who have all taken a sacred oath to never read her books. She can usually be found at her computer, procrastinating.

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Giveaway

Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a draw for a $15 Riptide gift card. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on April 18th. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Don’t forget to add your email so we can contact you if you win!

 

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Tour: Deep (Stage Dive #4) by Kylie Scott *Review, Excerpt and Giveaway*

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Deep (Stage Dive #4)
by Kylie Scott

A New Adult Romance
From St. Martin’s Griffin
Released March 31st 2015

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Positive. With two little lines on a pregnancy test, everything in Lizzy Rollins’ ordinary life is about to change forever. And all because of one big mistake in Vegas with Ben Nicholson, the irresistibly sexy bass player for Stage Dive. So what if Ben’s the only man she’s ever met who can make her feel completely safe, cherished, and out of control with desire at the same time? Lizzy knows the gorgeous rock star isn’t looking for anything more permanent than a good time, no matter how much she wishes differently.

Ben knows Lizzy is off limits. Completely and utterly. She’s his best friend’s little sister now, and no matter how hot the chemistry is between them, no matter how sweet and sexy she is, he’s not going to go there. But when Ben is forced to keep the one girl he’s always had a weakness for out of trouble in Sin City, he quickly learns that what happens in Vegas, doesn’t always stay there. Now he and Lizzie are connected in the deepest way possible…but will it lead to a connection of the heart?

 

deep

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Review

5-stars

As a follower of this series, I grew curious about Ben’s story. He appeared to be such a great characters that I wanted to see if there was more to him that what I had glimpsed in previous installments. Thankfully, I was right and then some!

Lizzy is Anne’s sister, Mal’s wife. We met her in Play while Mal and Anne were getting together. She seemed to be a great character to get to know, but I admit that I didn’t pay her much attention. But that was mainly because I was so engrossed in Mal and Anne’s story that everything and everyone fell my the wayside!

Now she finds herself pregnant and trying to deal with the repercussions of her one-night stand with Ben. Ha! Talk about a surprise! I was not expecting that at all. But then again, Kylie Scott always manages to surprise me one way or another.

This time around, I found surprises in every turn. Be it Ben’s reluctance to commit, Lizzy’s determination to make it on her own regardless of Ben’s good intentions or the powerful chemistry that existed between these two.

Sure, the one-night stand pregnancy trope has been done many times before, but it’s always nice to see it done a different way. What I enjoyed most about this story was that it wasn’t all prettied up for the sake of a happily ever after. There were plenty of outbursts and rampant emotions. But there were also a lot of honest interactions that made a relationship between these two difficult to achieve.

“Why are you here?” I reached back behind my head and grabbed his wrists, stilling him. “Ben?”
“Because apparently I’m shit at staying away from you.”
“Then I guess we have a problem.” Our fingers meshed, holding on tight.
“That’s putting it fucking mildly.”

Ben sure had his moments. Pffft! I lost the count on how many times I wanted to throttle him. Sometimes he came across as a real jerk and I just could not stand it. However, these moments were blended with raw, honest ones and lust-fueled ones too. So it made for a great balance and a perfect chance to get to know him better.

As for Lizzy, well she was fun and I enjoyed her journey. From the very beginning when she found out she was pregnant all through to the end when she stood for what she believed regardless of the consequences, Lizzy kept me interested in her story. I enjoyed the process of getting to know her and I especially enjoyed watching her grow and mature.

As I stated before, the chemistry between Ben and Lizzy was very powerful and sparks never failed to fly whenever they were together. However, what cemented my belief that these two were perfect for each other was the way they communicated honestly. She never pressured Ben and although clueless to his feelings towards Lizzy Ben never failed to provide her support. Maybe his methods weren’t perfect, but his intentions were always in the right place and I had to admire that about him.

“What do I do?”
“Give me a chance to catch up.”
I just stared at him, trying to keep my cool. Took two to tango, yada yada.
“I’m serious.” His shoulders heaved up and down. “Just give me a chance to catch up and I promise, Lizzy, I will have your back.”

Keep in mind that although this is the fourth book in the Stage Drive series it can be read as a stand alone. Characters from the other books make an appearance and come to play part in the story, but the author made sure that everything was clear for the reader to follow along.

For me this story was a treat to read. I got to appease my curiosity about Ben, go on tour with the band and visit with some of my favorite characters. Mal still cracks me up and continues to be my favorite, but all the others were awesome too.

All in all, an awesome conclusion to the series that tells an amazing love story. It was fun, romantic and everything in between. Well done Kylie Scott! I will miss these guys, but I am so very glad I had a chance to read heir stories.

“Relax.”
“You try relaxing with a huge boner rubbing against your back. I’m trying to break up with you – not that we’re even together – and your penis is not helping.”

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

 

deep teaser 7

 

Excerpt

“C’mon. How have you been, really? What’s been going on with you?” he pushed. I frowned at him and he frowned right back. “Liz, please.”

I groaned in defeat. “All right, I suck.”

“Why do you suck?”

“So very many reasons.” I pushed my hair back from my face—no more hiding. “Pregnancy sucks. It’s natural, my ass. I finally stop throwing up, but I’m tired all the time. Giving up coffee was horrendous. None of my clothes fit right because of these stupid breasts, and they ache constantly. I have to pee like every thirty seconds, and then to top it off, I cry every time the Healthy Hound ad comes on. It’s ridiculous”

Little wrinkles appeared either side of his nose. “You cry at a dog food ad?”

“Yes. The puppies jump all over each other to get to their mother and it’s just so beautiful, with their cute little tails wagging and everything.”

He just stared at me.

“I know its psycho, Ben. Believe me, I’m well aware of this.”

“Hey, it’s fine.” He covered a smile with his hand. Too late, the bastard.

“You try dealing with all these hormones going apeshit. Crap. Apeshoot.”

“Apeshoot?”

“I’m trying not to swear,” I explained. “You want the first word our child comes out with to be something bad?”

“No. Gotcha.” The man was incredibly bad at hiding a grin. “No swearing.”

 

Stage Dive Series

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Lick (Stage Dive, #1)
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19080006Play (Stage Dive, #2)
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Lead (Stage Dive, #3)
Lead (Stage Dive, #3)
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About the Author

kylie scott

USA Today Bestselling Australian Romance Writer.

Kylie is a long time fan of romance, rock music, and B-grade horror films. Based in Queensland, Australia with her two children and one delightful husband, she reads, writes and never dithers around on the internet.

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