Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Cover Reveal: Amber Smoke by Kristin Cast

Amber Smoke (The Escaped #1) by Kristin Cast

Release Date: June 9, 2015
Genre: New Adult, Paranormal
Publisher: Diversion Books
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The door to the massive New York Times bestselling House of Night series has closed. Now, Kristin Cast kicks down a new door to welcome her millions of fans to her latest sizzling series.

There is a world that runs parallel to our own, a world in which the souls of the damned are caged, where they are looked over by the Furies, and where they spend eternity in torment, mirroring the devastation and mayhem they created when alive.

Someone has opened the cage.

The worst of terrors has crossed the barrier that separates our world from theirs, and the Furies send a great, albeit untested warrior—their only son, Alek—to try to bring those souls back. He is young and handsome, headstrong and impulsive, and he won’t be able to do it alone.

Eva has grown up, beautiful and beloved, but surrounded by secrets. First, she will be hunted in an ancient feud that will threaten her life. Then, she will become the hunter.

With the police closing in and two worlds on the verge of crumbling around them, Alek and Eva must find each other, discover the limits of their powers, and work together to save everything they hold dear, including one another.

Blending elements of mythology with the dazzling storytelling that her fans have devoured through the House of Night series, Kristin Cast weaves a spellbinding and passionate tale that starts a thrilling new series with an explosive charge.


About the Author

Kristin Cast is a NY Times and USA Today bestselling author who teamed with her mother to write the young adult House of Night series. She has stories in several anthologies, as well as editorial credits, and a thriving t-shirt line. The first book in her new adult paranormal romance series releases June 9th, 2015!

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Monday, January 26, 2015

Blog Tour + Review + Giveaway + Author Interview: Sweet Surprise by Candis Terry

Sweet Surprise (Sweet, Texas #4) by Candis Terry

Release Date: January 27, 2015
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: Avon (HarperCollins)
Pages: 384
Format: eBook
Source: ARC for Tour from Edelweiss
Goodreads • Amazon

Playing naughty or nice . . .

Fiona Wilder knows all about falling in lust. Love? That's another story. Determined not to repeat past mistakes, the single mom and cupcake shop owner is focused on walking the straight and narrow. But trouble has a way of finding her. And this time it comes in the form of a smoking hot firefighter who knows all the delicious ways to ignite her bad-girl fuse.

Can lead to heartbreak . . .

Firefighter Mike Halsey learned long ago that playing with fire just gets you burned. He's put his demons behind him, and if there's one line he won't cross, it's getting involved with his best friend's ex. But when fate throws him in the path of the beautiful, strong, and off-limits Fiona, will he be able to fight their attraction? Or will he willingly go down in flames?

Or a sweet surprise!

As a single mother, Fiona is doing her best to navigate the many responsibilities that follow. Her daughter is her world, and while she wants to find the one someday, little Isabella and her dream of owning her own cupcake shop come first. So she makes the move to Sweet, Texas to be closer to the support of her surrogate family. Enter Mike, the hotter-than-hell fireman who makes her reconsider her own "serious relationships only" promise. They both have their histories, but the possibility of being together may be just what they need to let go.

Fiona and Mike as characters were definitely solid. They had a lot of baggage from their pasts that manifested in—what felt to me like—real, believable interactions (perhaps with the exception of Fiona's camaraderie with her ex-husband, but only because I've never seen two people as enviably amicable post-divorce). But, despite their respective hang-ups, they worked hard to move past them in order to be together. I also really enjoyed Fiona's—and eventually Mike's— devotion to and consideration for Fiona's daughter. That had the maternal instincts going haywire in the best way. On top of that, Fiona's drive and determination with regards to her business were admirable and likable qualities. In both cases, our leads certainly strong, worthy characters with enough flaws and missteps for intrigue and believability.

Perhaps my favorite aspects of this book were the little town of Sweet and the lively, genuine characters that inhabit it. The family and small-town dynamics of the Wilders and the rest of the residents were brimming with charm, humor, and all-around entertainment value. Sure, there are elements that aren't so new—the meddling, matchmaking matriarch (Ha! Alliteration!) for instance—but they all worked within the story for me and I never got hung up on whether they might be tired or trope-ish.

Sweet Surprise was the perfect cute read for a decompression weekend. I had a lot going on while I was making my way through it and the book I'd been reading before really hadn't been doing it for me, but this book was the perfect way to bring my stress down. It was a pretty quick read, but not in a way that detracted from the overall story. It was the textbook fun, light read, with enjoyable characters and interactions, but a healthy dose of heart. If you're a romance fan and looking for a way to relax, look no further! The town of Sweet, Texas has you covered.

Excerpt from Sweet Surprise

Fiona swallowed. Something warm and forbidden swirled in the pit of her stomach, then wound its way into her heart and other vital parts of her body. In the old days she’d tug him closer and take what she wanted. But this was a new day. A new Fiona. A more responsible Fiona who, unfortunately, couldn’t seem to get this man off her mind.

“Then maybe this won’t work out.” She eased her hand from his and instantly missed the fire in his touch.

“Maybe.” Those broad shoulders beneath that fresh cotton T-shirt lifted in a nonchalant shrug. “I’m willing to give it a shot if you are.”

Give what a shot, she wanted to ask. The actual work? Or the sexual tension that ignited between them like gasoline and matches?

A sigh expanded her chest. “If you’re going to work for me there can’t be any flirting. Or touching.”

His smile widened to a grin. “It’ll be a pleasure working under you.”

Oh boy.

Interview with Candis Terry

What drew you to write a series set in Texas? Assuming it's more than just the cowboys, that is... ;)

Hello! Thank you so very much for having me here today! Well, I do love my cowboys. I live on a farm in an agricultural area and there might be more rodeos here per year than anywhere else. When my daughter was involved in the rodeo circuit I got an eyeful of those cowboys. And I’m not complaining! Writing a series set in Texas was a very exciting venture for me. I’d been to Texas many times. I have relatives in Texas. And I just really love the state and its people. So the possibility of being able to do research and spend a little more time there was very appealing. Plus, Texas just seems to have very hearty people, and I knew the Wilder bunch was going to have to come from someplace that had a lot of guts and grit.

Where did you get the inspiration for Sweet, Texas?

I put boots on the ground and traveled all through the Texas Hill Country and I found more inspiration than I could have ever imagined. Sweet, Texas is really a combination of the small towns of Boerne and Comfort. I love these places! Sweet’s favorite fashionista goat, Miss Giddy, would not have come to pass had I not been driving through Comfort and seen an adorable little shop with that name. The sweet potato fries served at Bud’s Nothing Finer Diner may not have made it to the page if I hadn’t discovered the delicious ones at Soda Pop’s in Boerne. And Wilder & Son’s Hardware and Feed may never have opened its doors if it hadn’t been for Bergmann Lumber. There were so many places I discovered that I just couldn’t wait to come back home and create the little town that has become so near and dear to my heart.

What are your favorite characteristics in female and male leads?

Strength and the ability to push past their problems. Anyone who has read my books knows I write very flawed characters. And sometimes their stubbornness drives me a little crazy (Hello, Jackson Wilder from Sweetest Mistake!). But honestly, I want these characters to be as real as the people I meet every day. Real people are complex. They aren’t always nice. They have pasts that mold them into who they have become. Personally, I can tell you why I am the way I am and what caused me to be that way. Characters in books must act and react in the same way real people do. But in a story, the reader must admire or even relate to the characters. And that can only come from giving the characters enough depth and enough strength to overcome their issues and be brave enough to reach out there and grab hold of what really matters. I don’t create wimpy characters because I can’t tolerate them. I want to create characters who, at the end of the day, can be proud of themselves for the way they handled something. Even if they have a tough road getting there. And I want to create characters that the reader will (hopefully) remember long after they close the book.

Is there a part of Sweet Surprise that you really love? What makes it special?

Okay, narrowing it down to just one part is really hard . . . but . . . (groan) okay, I’m going to divide this up into a part that I really love and a scene that I really love. How about that?

The part that I really love is Fiona’s love and relationship with her daughter. I was once a single mom and my daughter is now a single mom. It’s a tough job. Fiona questions herself all the time and wonders if she’s doing a good enough job with Izzy so her daughter will grow up with the least amount of baggage possible. She works hard to achieve that dream, but she’s realistic enough to know that she’s not perfect and somewhere along the way she’s going to hit a brick wall. But her love for Izzy is apparent in everything she does. And I love that part about her.

The scene that I really love is the one where Jana calls in her charity donation from the Black Ties and Levi’s Bachelor Auction and asks Fireman Mike to help Fiona move into her new house and get her cupcake shop started. Poor Mike isn’t quite sure what to make of Jana and her request, but it gives him the opportunity to look at things a different way. It helps him leave his baggage at the curb and open the door to his dream, even if he gets there kicking and screaming all the way.

Fiona and Mike both have a lot of baggage, but they’re both strong characters and after a few bumps and bruises, are able to push forward and grab hold of what really matters.


About the Author

Candis Terry was born and raised near the sunny beaches of Southern California and now makes her home on an Idaho farm. She's experienced life in such diverse ways as working in a Hollywood recording studio to scooping up road apples left by her daughter's rodeo queening horse to working as a graphic designer. Only one thing has remained constant: Candis' passion for writing stories about relationships, the push and pull in the search for love, and the security one finds in their own happily ever after. Though her stories are set in small towns, Candis' wish is to give each of her characters a great big memorable love story rich with quirky characters, tons of fun, and a happy ending.

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Blog Tour + Giveaway: In His Keeping by Maya Banks

In His Keeping (Slow Burn #2) by Maya Banks

Release Date: January 27, 2015
Genre: Paranormal, Romance
Publisher: Avon (HarperCollins)
Pages: 432
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#1 bestselling author Maya Banks continues her suspenseful and steamy Slow Burn trilogy with this second book—a twisting tale featuring a strong yet vulnerable heroine in danger and the sexy alpha hero who must save her.

Abandoned as a baby to a young wealthy couple and raised in a world of privilege, Arial has no hint of her past or who she belonged to. Her only link lies in the one thing that sets her apart from everyone else—telekinetic powers. Protected by her adoptive parents and hidden from the public to keep her gift secret, Ari is raised in the lap of luxury, and isolation. That is, until someone begins threatening her life.

Beau Devereaux is no stranger to the strange. As the head of Deveraux Security, he’s more than familiar with the realities of physic powers. So when a family friend approaches him about protecting his daughter, he’s more than ready to jump on board. What Beau isn’t prepared for is the extent of his attraction to his beautiful and powerful client. What began as a simple assignment, just another job, quickly turns personal as Beau discovers he’ll do anything at all to protect Ari. Even if it costs him his life.

Excerpt from In His Keeping

GAVIN Rochester stood in the doorway of his enormous living room watching as his wife carefully examined a Christmas ornament before quietly replacing it in the box and tucking it back into the plastic basin they used to store Christmas decorations.

Her sadness instilled an ache inside his heart that made him physically rub his chest in an effort to alleviate the pain. But some wounds were simply too deep. Permanent and unable to heal. And her pain was unbearable to him because he couldn’t fix this for her. His connections, money, power. None of it meant anything if he couldn’t give his beloved wife what she wanted most. He felt her pain as keenly as if it were his own—and it was. Because he couldn’t stand for her to be unhappy. He’d move mountains just to make her smile.

She’d changed him. Made him a better man. A man he never thought he could be—never wanted to be. But she changed everything—his world—his place in his world. Suddenly he’d
wanted to be a better man. For her. Because it was what she deserved. And he would never place her in harm’s way with his business practices. It was a new experience for him. Living clean. In the light. Having someone who made him want to feel . . . worthy.

Then she turned from her sad perusal of the lone orna- ment, and when she saw him, her face lit up, rosy from the shining Christmas lights strung around the tree. He marveled at how, whenever she smiled at him, it took his breath away. It was something that would never go away. His love for his wife was like nothing he’d ever experienced in his life.
Staggering. Yet warm, like the flames in the fireplace. Unwavering. Without res- ervations, strings or conditions.

She loved
him, and that knowledge still had the power to bring him to his knees.

“That’s the last one,” she said, her gaze drifting one last time to the sole ornament that hadn’t been hung on the tree. Sorrow briefly chased the warmth from her eyes before she appeared to make a concerted effort to collect herself, and the grief filling her features slipped away, but he’d seen it. Knew it to be there no matter the effort she made not to let it show.

He crossed the room, no longer able to bear the distance between them. He pulled her into his arms and thrust his fingers into her long hair and then nuzzled the top of her head, inhaling her scent as his lips pressed to her glossy brunette strands.

“We’ll try again,” he murmured, trying to inject confidence and reassurance in his tone. And yet he knew he’d failed miserably. He sounded as dejected as he knew her to be. Not because she’d failed him. He could live his life with only her and never suffer a single regret. But he’d failed
her. He was unable to give her a child he knew she wanted with every breath.


About the Author

Maya Banks is a #1 USA Today and New York Times bestselling author whose chart toppers have included erotic romance, romantic suspense, contemporary romance, Scottish historical romances. She is the author of the Breathless Trilogy, the KGI novels, the Sweet series, and the Colters Legacy novels.

She lives in the South with her husband and three children and other assorted babies, such as her two Bengal kitties and a Calico who’s been with her as long as her youngest child. She’s an avid reader of romance and loves to dish books with her fans and anyone else who’ll listen! She very much enjoys interacting with her readers on Facebook and Twitter as well as in her Yahoo! Group.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Blog Tour + Review + Giveaway: The Grown Ups by Robin Antalek

The Grown Ups by Robin Antalek

Release Date: January 27, 2015
Genre: Contemporary
Publisher: William Morrow (HarperCollins)
Pages: 304
Format: eBook
Source: ARC for Tour from Edelweiss
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From Robin Antalek, author of The Summer We Fell Apart, comes an evocative and emotionally resonant coming-of-age novel involving three friends who explore what it means to be happy, what it means to grow up, and the difficulties in doing both together. Spanning over a decade, and told in alternating voices, The Grown Ups explores the indelible bonds between friends and family and the challenges that threaten to divide them. It is the addictive and moving story of these old friends who wind up confronting their past in order to find happiness in their adult lives that make this novel an anticipated winter release.

Sam Turner, the summer he turns 15, feels lucky enough to enjoy the unexpected attention of his friend Suzie Epstein, even though it’s only a few secret months. For reasons Sam doesn’t entirely understand—and will never question—the budding relationship is kept hidden from their close circle of friends. But before their summer tans can even start to fade, Sam’s world unexpectedly shatters twice: Suzie’s parents are moving away to save their marriage, and his own mother has suddenly left the house, leaving Sam’s father alone to raise two sons.

Watching as her parents’ marital troubles escalate, Suzie Epstein takes on the responsibility of raising her two younger brothers while simultaneously planning an early escape to college to seek independence. Though she occasionally thinks of Sam, it’s her oldest friend Bella Spade she finds herself missing. Embarrassed by the destructive wake of her parents as they left the only place Suzie could call home, Suzie makes no attempt to reconnect with the one person she needs. Its years later that a chance meeting with Sam’s older brother Michael will reunite her with both Sam and Bella—finally forcing her to confront her friends, her past and what she left behind.

After losing Suzie, Bella surprisingly finds her first real love in Sam. But his inability to commit to her or even his own future eventually drives them apart. Watching Suzie and Michael as they seem to have worked it all out, Bella’s only to wonder where she went wrong and how to make it right.

It's been a while since a story put me through the emotional gambit quite like The Grown Ups. At times I was left mixed up, hurting, but in this kind of wonderful way. This story just made me feel everything—from the warmth of love curling low in your belly to the hollowed-out insides of despair and flush of anger. While I can't claim my life really looks like any of these characters', there's a stark honesty to the way Antalek portrays the inter-weaving of their development that feels impossible to not relate to in some small way, at the very least. You will relive those awkward, terrible times of thinking you understood the world and your place in it, only to have that belief dashed over and over again. It's difficult to make it through at times for that very reasoninga visceral recalling of all of the moments of failed bravado and having to accept that no one ever really knows what will happen in life.

As far as the characters go, I was immediately drawn to Sam. I don't know if it's as simple as the fact that his was the first perspective shared or some more complex thread connecting us, but I often found myself falling into his feelings. The way Suzie treated him kept me irrationally angry at her for far longer than I should've been and I really didn't know who I wanted him to find his way to in the end between her and Bella. At times I resented his brother, Michael, for being the golden child that everyone wanted, just as Sam seemed to. So while I enjoyed parts of all three narratives, it was Sam's that really pulled me in, for reasons I won't delve to far into for now.

Throughout the entirety of the story, most of the moments that really stood out were nothing short of poetic. Antalek crafts prose that a some points has a flow so present that you have expect to see it in some stanza-ed format. I'd never read any of her books before, but it was certainly one of my absolute favorite parts. Because those lilting passages seemed to follow the path of the emotions behind them, only to be felt all the more intensely. It's possible I'm getting a tad over-dramatic, but that's how it felt for me. Sure, that effect may not be present for everyone. But for me it was something pretty damn special.

With all of that said, there were a couple of struggles. For one, I had trouble keeping the timeline straight on more than one occasion because of the narrative switching and time jumps. Honestly, though, once I sopped worrying about it and just kind of decided I'd more or less figure out where we were, that frustration disappeared. Secondly, some portions of the narrative seemed to drag a bit. Then, upon reflection, I didn't even care, because they chronicled those points in time where you feel at a standstill and like nothing is happening to you, but the world just keeps on turning. And within this particular story, with these particular players, those times really needed to be acknowledged.

Overall, The Grown Ups is everything you would expect from a coming-of-age novel: full of emotion, the fumbles we make, and just everything else that is life. For me, this book represents some of the very best of what these types of stories have to offer. So if you're a fan of such chronicling tales, I highly recommend giving it a chance. Even the times that seemed to drag packed the kind of punch that only comes from recognizing yourself and our own life in the pieces of a character's. This book offers the kind of kinship and acknowledgment of all the twists and turns we go through so you feel just a little bit less alone at the end. And there's just something so incredible about it.

Excerpt from The Grown Ups

Years ago on a December night in their junior year of high school they had been in Peter Chang’s basement before the winter dance, when Sam had turned to Bella, his eyes as navy as his sweater, and said, “So?”

It began as simply as that, friends who had known each other since they were in diapers. Sam made her happy. Just the sight of him as his cheeks flushed a deep shade of red was all it took. She wanted to kiss him and she knew that he probably wanted to kiss her too. Later, when they had all stumbled from Peter’s basement, wandering through the streets of their neighborhood to the high school, Sam had bumped up against her shoulder and she had found his hand down by his side and grabbed hold of his fingers. He wound them through hers and hadn’t let go, and right then in that moment she had been so sure of everything she had ever wanted.

Since her mother’s funeral, Bella had been stuck on that memory, and she didn’t know why. Maybe it was only the ache of nostalgia. She wanted to lie in bed alone and go over every minute she had spent in Sam’s arms. But then she had noticed the way her mother was looking at her and instead she had crawled into bed with her and whispered about Sam. The mustard light in the room was diffused by the angle of the bathroom door, and she caught a glimpse of her mother’s face in the shadows. She was smiling but there was also something sad in her expression.


About the Author

Robin Antalek is the author of The Summer We Fell Apart. Her nonfiction writing has been published in literary journals and in several collections, including The Beautiful Anthology; Writing off Script: Writers on the Influence of Cinema; and The Weeklings: Revolution #1 Selected Essays 2012-1013. Her short fiction has appeared in 52 Stories, Five Chapters, Sun Dog, The Southeast Review, and Literary Mama among others. She lives in Saratoga Springs, New York.

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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Cover Reveal: All Played Out by Cora Carmack

All Played Out (Rusk University #3) by Cora Carmack

Release Date: May 12, 2015
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: William Morrow (HarperCollins)
Pages: 320
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First person in her family to go to college? CHECK.
Straight A’s? CHECK.
On track to graduate early? CHECK.
Social life? …..yeah, about that….

With just a few weeks until she graduates, Antonella DeLuca’s beginning to worry that maybe she hasn’t had the full college experience. (Okay... Scratch that. She knows she hasn't had the full college experience).

So Nell does what a smart, dedicated girl like herself does best. She makes a "to do" list of normal college activities.

Item #1? Hook up with a jock.

Rusk University wide receiver Mateo Torres practically wrote the playbook for normal college living. When he’s not on the field, he excels at partying, girls, and more partying. As long as he keeps things light and easy, it's impossible to get hurt... again. But something about the quiet, shy, sexy-as-hell Nell gets under his skin, and when he learns about her list, he makes it his mission to help her complete it.

Torres is the definition of confident (And sexy. And wild), and he opens up a side of Nell that she's never known. But as they begin to check off each crazy, exciting, normal item, Nell finds that her frivolous list leads to something more serious than she bargained for. And while Torres is used to taking risks on the field, he has to decide if he's willing to take the chance when it's more than just a game.

Together they will have to decide if what they have is just part of the experiment or a chance at something real.

And don't miss the other books in the Rusk University series:

All Lined Up
(Amazon • B&N • iTunes)

All Broke Down
(Amazon • B&N • iTunes)

About the Author

Cora Carmack is a twenty-something writer who likes to write about twenty-something characters. She's done a multitude of things in her life-- boring jobs (like working retail), Fun jobs (like working in a theatre), stressful jobs (like teaching), and dream jobs (like writing). She enjoys placing her characters in the most awkward situations possible, and then trying to help them get a boyfriend out of it. Awkward people need love, too. Her first book, Losing It, was a New York Times and USA Today bestseller.

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Thursday, January 15, 2015

Blog Tour + Review + Giveaway: Call Sign Karma by Jamie Rae

Call Sign Karma by Jamie Rae

Release Date: January 5, 2015
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: Lyrical Press (Kensington Publishing Corp)
Pages: 270
Format: eBook
Source: ARC for Tour
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Love in the no-fly zone…

Distraught over the loss of her brother in a fighter jet accident, Tinklee Pinkerton decides to follow in his footsteps and prove the tragedy wasn’t his fault. But when she’s chosen as the first woman to fly the Air Force’s F-35, her plan for a life that revolves around work is thrown off course by a handsome, mysterious stranger…

Thanks to Locke’s seductive British accent, sweet nature, and one too many beers, Tink is soon inspired to throw caution to the wind and herself into his arms. She thinks maybe love can heal after all—until she discovers Locke is her superior officer. Tink has no problem risking her life in the air, but with everything on the line, is she brave enough to risk her heart on the ground?

Tinklee Pinkerton—despite the setbacks to being taken seriously of being small, blonde, a girl, and named, well, Tinklee Pinkerton—is well on her way to being a certifiable bad-ass. Her status of being the first woman chosen to fly the Air Force's new baby has made sure of that. Now if she can just convince herself and the boys' club around her she's worthy of the honor, maybe she can finally prove that the accident that killed her brother wasn't his fault.

Enter Locke. He's sweet, sexy, British...and her new flight instructor, as she finds out after one oh-so-very fun night between them. Somehow, Tink doesn't see an indiscretion with her superior helping her with any of these endeavors. But she's determined, and the same tenacity that got her here will carry her through, if only she could move past the weight of her brother's death.

The one thing that I can't stress enough about Call Sign Karma is how incredibly awesome it is to have a female fighter pilot lead. Tinklee's character brings a kind of freshness into military romance stories (an—arguably—otherwise saturated market) that I didn't realize I was waiting for until I read it. More often than not, these types of stories fall into the civilian woman/military man trap without consideration for the fact that there are women right alongside those men, albeit in smaller numbers. It's a foundation to the story that had me hooked from the get-go by sheer force of girl-power appreciation. Tink is by no means perfect as a character—the loss of her brother has left her emotionally stunted and unwilling to let others in, even in the case of sexy British pilots you may or may not be rooting for. But over the course of the story she must face what has happened to her and learn how to be the strong female pilot she needs to be, while also letting herself be vulnerable when it counts.

Which brings me to the romance. While I liked Tink for a whole lot of reasons, I really wanted to smack her a few times. Locke is that charming, sweet, and emotionally supportive. Although—I begrudgingly admit—it ultimately led to a stronger bond between the two, the number of false starts to their relationship made me so crazy I wanted to pull my hair out. But despite my frustration, theirs is an enjoyable relationship with laughs, trials, steam, and one fabulous accent.

Perhaps the most important recommendation I can make for this book is for fans of the more traditional military man male lead stories to give it a shot. While I enjoy those books as much as the next sucker-for-a-uniform, it's beyond refreshing and uplifting to have a story go a step further and show the female perspective. I—like many others out there—love feisty female leads, and this is the perfect set-up for just that. Here's to hoping for more leads like Tinklee and stories like Call Sign Karma!


About the Author

Jamie Rae is a New Adult and Young Adult author. She writes with one goal in mindcreate stories with a positive message that will stay with the reader long after they've finished reading.

Jamie is an avid reader and loves discovering stories with a great hook, though she will not eat, sleep, or speak until she reaches the end. The Harry Potter years weren't pretty!! Convinced that her Hogwarts letter was lost in the mail, she keeps a watchful eye for owls hoping her children will have better luck!

In her other life, Jamie Rae is an orthodontist, and literary agent. She keeps her heart overflowing with love as a mother of three and has perfected the art of nomadic living as a military spouse and Air Force veteran. Jamie has a passion for critters of all shapes and sizes and you can often find her sneaking them into her own home or volunteering for rescues.

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Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Cover Reveals: Hard to Be Good and Hard to Let Go by Laura Kaye

Hard to Be Good (Hard Ink #3.5) by Laura Kaye

Release Date: April 7, 2015
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: Avon Impulse (HarperCollins)
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Hard Ink Tattoo owner Jeremy Rixey has taken on his brother’s stateside fight against the forces that nearly killed Nick and his Special Forces team a year before. Now, Jeremy’s whole world has been turned upside down—not the least of which by a brilliant, quiet blond man who tempts Jeremy to settle down for the first time ever.

Recent kidnapping victim Charlie Merritt has always been better with computers than people, so when he’s drawn into the SF team’s investigation of his army colonel father’s corruption, he’s surprised to find acceptance and friendship—especially since his father never accepted who Charlie was. Even more surprising is the heated tension Charlie feels with sexy, tattooed Jeremy, Charlie’s opposite in almost every way.

With tragedy and chaos all around them, temptation flashes hot, and Jeremy and Charlie can’t help but wonder why they’re trying so hard to be good…

Hard to Let Go (Hard Ink #4) by Laura Kaye

Release Date: June 30, 2015
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: Avon Impulse (HarperCollins)
Pages: 384
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Five dishonored soldiers.
Former Special Forces.
One last mission.
These are the men of Hard Ink.

Beckett Murda hates to dwell on the past. But his investigation into the ambush that killed half his Special Forces team and ended his Army career gives him little choice. Just when his team learns how powerful their enemies are, hard-ass Beckett encounters his biggest complication yet—a seductive, feisty Katherine Rixey.

A tough, stubborn prosecutor, Kat visits her brothers' Hard Ink Tattoo shop following a bad break-up—and finds herself staring down the barrel of a stranger's gun. Beckett is hard-bodied and sexy as hell, but he's also the most infuriating man ever. Worse, Kat's brothers are at war with the criminals her office is investigating. When Kat joins the fight, she lands straight in Beckett's sights . . . and in his arms. Not to mention their enemies' crosshairs. Now Beckett and Kat must set aside their differences to work together, because the only thing sweeter than justice is finding love and never letting go.

And don't miss the other books in the Hard Ink series:

Praise for the Hard Ink Series

For Hard as You Can:

"TOP PICK! There is a sinister and desperate edge to this tale that will keep readers glued to their seats. Kaye has dark romantic suspense nailed!"
          ~ RT Book Reviews Magazine

"Hard as You Can is another five star read. The characters Ms. Kaye has created are wonderfully broken and the drama is gritty, but the burgeoning romance and the tight-knitted relationship of the team leaves you with a sense of redemption. A must read series!"
          ~ San Francisco Book Review

For Hard as It Gets:

"Edgy, sexy and full of suspense! A great read from a great new author!"
          ~ #1 NYT Bestselling Author J.R. Ward

"Sizzling romance... The intriguing tattoo parlor and military background will appeal to fans of Suzanne Brockmann and Lindsay McKenna."
          ~ Publishers Weekly Review

"Kaye's depiction of sexual tension and her sex scenes are masterful and this will appeal to fans of Maya Banks' KGI and Julia Ann Walker's Black Knight's series."
          ~ Booklist

About the Author

Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over twenty books in contemporary and paranormal romance. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. She lives in Maryland with her husband, two daughters, and cute-but-bad dog, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.

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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Blog Tour + Review: Blind Date Bride by Arlene Hittle

Blind Date Bride (Reality TV Bites #1) by Arlene Hittle

Release Date: June 10, 2014
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 274
Format: eBook
Source: Review Copy for Tour
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Nearly a decade ago, accountant Kari Parker shed 220 pounds of dead weight—her hulking, abusive college boyfriend. The last thing she wants in her life is another man—especially one as tall as a Windy City high rise. Yet when her best friend enters her in Romance TV’s “Get a Love Life” contest, another man is exactly what she gets. As much as she'd love to just say no, she can't turn down the prize money that will allow her to help her parents save the restaurant they've run all her life.

Sparks fly between Kari and her bogus groom, and as she and Damien share close quarters, intimate meals and—gulp—his bed, Kari doesn’t stand a chance of resisting his considerable charms. Even worse? She might not want to. But building a real future out of their sham marriage will be tougher than baking a wedding cake from scratch… with no flour… in a broken oven.

What happens when the day you meet your future husband is on your wedding day? Thanks to a Romance TV contest Kari's best friend Bethany nominated her for, she's about to find out. Now Kari, still burdened with the aftermath of an unhealthy relationship 9 years ago, must try to make it work with a man she just met in order to secure financial security for her parents. Perhaps easier said than done.

Blind Date Bride is the kind of romance that attempts to show every part of life and relationships--from the serious to the sad to the hilarious and embarrassing. There were moments of challenge caused by Kari's past and the Romance TV-meddling in their relationship. Moments that acknowledged the inherent awkwardness of getting to know someone. And all of that is only heightened by the fact that they got married before getting to know each other.

The relationship between Kari and Damien is full of sweetness and heat and, at first, the demons from Kari's past. When their relationship is good, it's so sweet, fun, and lovable. But my one continuing annoyance came from certain references to Kari's past. For instance, the near-constant fixation on Damien's size. I understand that this is something that would be hard for Kari, given her experience, but something about the way it was stated just rubbed me the wrong way. I can't explain it exactly, but it didn't keep me from enjoying the other aspects of their courtship.

For fans of light-hearted romance fair, this book is the perfect choice. The humor and romance are dominant throughout the story, and even when the struggles arise. And the major struggles are not overly drawn-out, so you get to enjoy the periods of happiness. So if you prefer the lighter, fluffier side of life in your books, and laughing while reading is what you you love to do, check out Blind Date Bride!

About the Author

Arlene Hittle is a Midwestern transplant who now makes her home in northern Arizona. She suffers from the well-documented Hittle family curse of being a Cubs fan but will root for the Diamondbacks until they run up against the Cubs. Longtime friends are amazed she writes books with sports in them, since she's about as coordinated as a newborn giraffe and used to say marching band required more exertion than golf.

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Monday, January 5, 2015

Release Day Launch + Giveaway: Call Sign Karma by Jamie Rae

Call Sign Karma by Jamie Rae

Release Date: January 5, 2015
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: Lyrical Press (Kensington Publishing Corp)
Pages: 270
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Love in the no-fly zone…

Distraught over the loss of her brother in a fighter jet accident, Tinklee Pinkerton decides to follow in his footsteps and prove the tragedy wasn’t his fault. But when she’s chosen as the first woman to fly the Air Force’s F-35, her plan for a life that revolves around work is thrown off course by a handsome, mysterious stranger…

Thanks to Locke’s seductive British accent, sweet nature, and one too many beers, Tink is soon inspired to throw caution to the wind and herself into his arms. She thinks maybe love can heal after all—until she discovers Locke is her superior officer. Tink has no problem risking her life in the air, but with everything on the line, is she brave enough to risk her heart on the ground?


About the Author

Jamie Rae is a New Adult and Young Adult author. She writes with one goal in mindcreate stories with a positive message that will stay with the reader long after they've finished reading.

Jamie is an avid reader and loves discovering stories with a great hook, though she will not eat, sleep, or speak until she reaches the end. The Harry Potter years weren't pretty!! Convinced that her Hogwarts letter was lost in the mail, she keeps a watchful eye for owls hoping her children will have better luck!

In her other life, Jamie Rae is an orthodontist, and literary agent. She keeps her heart overflowing with love as a mother of three and has perfected the art of nomadic living as a military spouse and Air Force veteran. Jamie has a passion for critters of all shapes and sizes and you can often find her sneaking them into her own home or volunteering for rescues.

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