Book Review – Tracking You

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We saw Puppy Love earlier this year.  Now it is time for the next O’Grady to take a fall.

*****

TRACKING YOU

Redwood Ridge series

by Kelly Moran

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Pub Date: 5/23/17

Blurb:

Love isn’t always loud. Sometimes it’s silent.

Gabby Cosette has always been dubbed the good girl of quaint Redwood Ridge, Oregon, and being permanently put in the friend zone has left her dating life stagnant. With no prospects in sight, she clings to her friends and resolves to not let loneliness drag her under. So when the town Battleaxes set their matchmaking sights on her, she figures it can’t hurt. Yet the guy they think is perfect for her just happens to be not only her boss at the veterinarian clinic, but her best friend. Sure, Flynn O’Grady is attractive and the nicest guy around, but going there with him would topple both of their carefully constructed worlds and there would be no going back. Even if he is starting to make her girly parts zing.

Having been born deaf, Flynn has already felt like an outsider most of his life. Aside from his brothers, Gabby is about the only person who’s gone out of her way to treat him as more than a handicap. Which is exactly why he’s banked his secret attraction for his sweet, beautiful vet tech. Except his meddling family is trying to play Cupid and ruin the best thing to ever happen to him. Without Gabby, his work as a veterinarian, never mind his personal life, wouldn’t flow. Determined to ignore the antics, he’s secure in the knowledge she’s not interested in him romantically. But then a kiss changes everything . . . and he’s wondering if taking the ultimate shot at love might be worth the risk.

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*****

Excerpt:

Gabby Cosette smoothed her hand down the simple baby blue sundress she meticulously picked out for this evening and tried not to look too eager. Or throw up. That wouldn’t do either.

From a back booth, she glanced around the only Italian restaurant in Redwood Ridge, comforted by the fact it was still early yet for the dinner rush. The place was a good choice. Right? Not as casual as Shooters—the bar she and her friends frequented—but not as formal as one of the seafood restaurants that dotted their Oregon coastal town. A step above grabbing coffee or a beer, yet it didn’t scream desperation.

Was a booth in the back too obvious? Had she overdone it with her makeup? Maybe she should’ve put her hair up instead of down?

No, no. She went for light and natural on purpose. The patrons of Redwood Ridge had known her all her life. It wasn’t far out of the realm of ordinary for her to wear a dress and light cosmetics. She was being a basket case.

It’s just… Well, she hadn’t had a date in a year. A year!

To calm her nerves, she drew in a deep breath and focused on the red checkered tablecloth. A votive candle flickered on the windowsill to her right, the flame reflecting off the tinted glass. The parking lot stretched beyond, where her date’s car was not in one of the available spots.

It was silly to get this worked up over a first date, especially with Tom.

She’d gone to elementary and high school with him. His parents still lived down the street from hers. Strange how he’d never shown any interest in her romantically, yet out of the blue, he’d asked her out this week.

Then again, most everyone in town viewed her as the sweet Cosette girl, everyone’s friend. Thus the no date in a year. It was hard to get a guy to think about kissing her, never mind imagining her naked, when she had platonic all but tattooed on her forehead.

The waitress strolled over in her apron, holding a notepad in her hand.

“Are you waiting on someone, sweetie pie?”

“Yes.” She smiled and grabbed her cell on the table. Tom was five minutes late. “He should be here any minute.”

“Ooh. Is it a date?” Mavis planted a hand on her plump waist and grinned, the wrinkles around her eyes growing to crevices. Gabby wasn’t sure how old Mavis was, no one really knew, but she never seemed to age past the state from when Gabby was a child.

Gabby opened her mouth to answer, but Tom strode toward her, weaving around tables and plopping in the seat across the booth.

“Couldn’t find ya at the bar. I wasn’t expecting a table.”

It was still early, and Le Italy didn’t get that crowded even on a Friday night. How hard could it possibly have been to locate her? “Give us a sec,”she told Mavis and waited for her to step away.

Tom had blond hair too short for her preference and a thin mouth. His unremarkable brown eyes darted around the restaurant and back to her. He made no attempt to apologize for being late, and it appeared as if he’d just come from work. His jeans and T-shirt were paint-splattered. The hazard of working for his dad’s commercial painting and roofing company.

“Thanks for meeting me.” He took off his ball cap and scratched his head.

Why did that sound un-date-like? “Um…sure thing. How’s work going?”

Her gaze dipped to his hands, no better off than his clothes. Maybe she should’ve picked Shooters after all.

Something felt very, very off as her belly twisted. Not with nerves this time. Confused, Gabby’s mind scrolled through their conversation from earlier in the week when he’d brought his dog into the vet clinic where she worked. As he was checking out, he’d anxiously spun around to face her and asked if she could meet him.

“Good. Work’s good.” He put his hat back on and glanced outside.

“Getting to be warmer out, so the jobs are picking up.” Perhaps he was just nervous, too. Her tension drained a degree.

Mavis returned and asked for a drink order.

Tom lifted his hand to wave her off. “Nothing for me, thanks. I can’t stay long. Got a poker game with the guys tonight. I need to shower before they show up.”

The forced smile Gabby had plastered on her face began to wilt like her mom’s petunias in August. What did he mean he couldn’t stay long? And why would he ask her out and schedule a card game on the same night?

Plus, he could shower for his friends, but not her?

Mavis divided her gaze between them, a mix of bewilderment and irritation lifting her brows. She tapped her pen to her pad as the silence hung. “Can I get you something?” She focused on Gabby, her tone indicating she should order something.

“I’ll have a sweet tea. Thank you.” When the waitress walked away, Gabby looked at Tom. He’d thrown his arm over the back of the booth and had stretched his legs out. The aroma of Eau de Paint Thinner wafted across the table. “So…?”

“Right, right.” Tom leaned forward and crossed his arms. “I appreciate you letting me do this in person.”

She stilled. “Do what?” Because she was definitely getting the this-is-not-a-date vibe now.

A warring shift in contradiction took over her body. Everything inside grew rapidly chilly while her skin heated in what she hoped wasn’t a blush. Her pale complexion always gave away her emotions and she hated that more than she’d hated freshman algebra. Math was evil.

He let out a tense laugh, which sounded more like a guffaw, and drew several heads from other diners. “Not exactly a conversation you want to have over the phone or somethin’, ya know?”

No. She didn’t know. “Maybe if you just tell me?”

He played with the parmesan shaker, not meeting her gaze. “Well, the whole town’s buzzing about Rachel and Jeff’s split.”

She frowned, not connecting the dots on his crazy pattern. Her older sister had only dated Jeff for a few weeks which, per Rachel standards, might as well have been marriage. Rachel liked to keep her options—and legs—open.

Guilt immediately consumed her for the crass thought, but it didn’t make it any less true. She and Rachel couldn’t be any more different. Rachel was aloof and sexy. Gabby was the girl next door. Men desired Rachel. The only thing they desired from Gabby was a shoulder to cry on after her sister shot them down.

She twirled a strand of hair around her finger to keep from fidgeting. “I don’t understand what Rachel and Jeff have to do with…” Unable to finish the sentence—because she had no idea anymore what “this” was—she waved her hand between them.

“Well,” he said in an aw-shucks kind of way that made her want to grind her teeth, “now that Rachel’s available, I thought maybe you could put in a good word for me?”

*****

Review:

I didn’t read Puppy Love when it came out in May but now I’m wishing I had because if Avery & Cade are half as adorable as Flynn & Gabby then it is definitely a must read.  The deep friendship between them just shines off the pages and had me waiting with them to see if they can figure out how to make something more work.

I really appreciate that Moran is willing to address disabilities in her stories – first she had an autistic daughter and now our hero is deaf.  It isn’t that uncommon to have a child on the spectrum in romances today, but I think that usually it isn’t as severe.  And while we are seeing more amputations (especially in books with military characters) I can’t think of the last one I’d seen with a deaf person as a main character.  I think that it is refreshing to address that the world isn’t made up of 6’+ hunks and willowy women.

Granted Flynn is still sexy but he does have some hang-ups thanks to the way he’s been treated.  Many of them are tied back to his childhood but those scars can be some of the deepest, coming as they do at such an impressionable age.  While it hasn’t stopped him from leading a very full life, it has impacted the way that he approaches his love life.

Gabby has been Flynn’s best friend since Kindergarten and she understands him like no one else, even his brothers.  Her big heart and giving nature makes her a wonderful vet tech and even more so it makes her a great friend.

And that’s the problem.  While they love and value each other, both are a lot scared that any changes in their relationship might ruin their friendship.  And while they are struggling with deepening feelings, that fear is their main driving force.  What they need help seeing is that while they are concentrating on what could happen if it goes bad, they are missing what could be if it goes right.  They are already so important to each other that their relationship could be spectacular if they’d only let it.

Not knowing any one who is deaf (not since middle school) I’m not sure how realistic Moran’s treatment is but it felt like she handled it well.  Flynn’s concerns seem realistic as does the life he’s built for himself.  It’s not easy for him, but if he can finally let go of some of his old baggage he could find out how great life really can be.

*****

Author Info:

Bestselling author Kelly Moran says she gets her ideas from everyone and everything around her and there’s always a book playing out in her head. No one who knows her bats an eyelash when she talks to herself, and no one is safe from becoming her next fictional character. She is a Catherine Award-Winner, Readers Choice Finalist, Holt Medallion Finalist, and earned one of the 10 Best Reads by USA Today’s HEA. She is also a Romance Writers of America member. Her interests include: sappy movies, MLB, NFL, driving others insane, and sleeping when she can. She is a closet caffeine junkie and chocoholic, but don’t tell anyone. She resides in Wisconsin with her husband, three sons, and two dogs. Most of her family lives in the Carolinas, so she spends a lot of time there as well.

Website * Twitter * Facebook * Amazon * Goodreads

*****

Giveaway:

Print copy of the book

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*****

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Spotlight – Sam’s Legacy

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For lover’s of Western romances, Shirleen Davies brings another treat with the latest in her MacLaren historical series.

*****

Sam’s Legacy

Book Four, MacLarens of Boundary Mountain Series

Historical Western Romance

by Shirleen Davies

Blurb:

Samuel Covington, ex-Pinkerton agent and deputy in the frontier town of Convictionhas come a long way from his upbringing in Baltimore. His job, and a particular woman, occupy his time and thoughts. His future is assured—until a message from home tears it all apart.

Jinny MacLaren loves the ranch, her family, and one particular deputy. Even though Sam’s never said the words, she’s certain of his feelings, envisioning a future as his wife—until the day he announces he’s leaving without a promise to return.

His future no longer belongs to him. Sam never anticipated the news awaiting him, or the consequences of a past he’d left far behind.

Shoving painful thoughts of Sam aside, Jinny focuses on a life without him, allowing a friendship to grow with someone else. He’s handsome, smart, and caring, yet in Jinny’s heart, he’ll never be Sam.

As both face an uncertain future without the other, neither anticipates the dangers stalking them.

Protecting what’s his is Sam’s calling. Reclaiming what he left behind may prove to be the biggest challenge of his life.

Sam’s Legacy, book four in the MacLarens of Boundary Mountain historical western Romance Series, is a stand-alone, full-length novel with an HEA and no cliffhanger.

Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Amazon CA | iBooks | Google Play | Kobo

*****

Excerpt:

“Jinny, let me explain.” Sam tried to turn her toward him, feeling her resist. “There are reasons I must go.”

She refused to look at him, let him see how much his leaving hurt. She’d been a fool to dream about Sam, hoping someday he’d feel the same. “I’m certain there are, and I respect that you believe you must leave.”

Looking around, he eased her between two buildings, out of the range of prying eyes and ears. Placing his hands on her shoulders, he held steady, even as she twisted to leave.

“Look at me, Jinny.” He waited until she stopped squirming, her reluctant gaze meeting his. “I don’t want to leave. It’s something I have to do. You were the reason I stayed beyond the time I’d agreed to with Brodie.”

Her eyes widened. “I don’t understand. Why must you go now?”

Letting his hands slip from Jinny’s shoulders to stroke her arms, he felt her shiver, his own body tightening. A life with her was what he wanted. He’d thought of little else the last few months, yet it may now be out of his control.

His resolve began to slip as she moved closer, her feelings for him clear on her face. Even as his hands moved to her back, he knew it was a mistake. Drawing her to him, he leaned down, brushing a soft kiss across her lips. Seeing the intensity in her eyes, feeling her hands tighten on his arms, he took her mouth again, letting passion take control.

A thrill rushed through him as he realized she knew little of what was happening. He doubted she’d been kissed before, yet her response was immediate. Moving his lips across her jaw, trailing kisses down her neck, he felt a shudder rush through her.

“Sam…”

Her soft plea brought an unwelcome flash of sanity. Placing one more kiss on her lips, he pulled Jinny close, tucking her head below his chin.

“There are things you don’t know about me. I wish it could be different. You know I’d stay if I could.”

Her body stiffened at his whispered words. Moving her hands to his chest, she pushed away. Clearing her throat, Jinny took another step back. “I should go.”

“I’ll walk with you.”

“Nae. It would be better if I go alone.” Taking a few hesitant steps, she stopped. “When will you be leaving?”

His throat worked as he sucked in a slow breath. “As soon as a decision has been made on the prisoners. I can’t leave Brodie with just two deputies.”

“A few days then.” Her voice was devoid of all emotion. “Then I won’t see you again.” She tried to smile, but couldn’t manage it. “I wish you the best, Sam. Always the best.” Without waiting for him to respond, she hurried away, leaving him feeling a loss greater than he’d ever known.

*****

Author Info:

Shirleen Davies writes romance—historical, contemporary, and romantic suspense. She grew up in Southern California, attended Oregon State University, and has degrees from San Diego State University and the University of Maryland. During the day she provides consulting services to small and mid-sized businesses. But her real passion is writing emotionally charged stories of flawed people who find redemption through love and acceptance.  She now lives with her husband in a beautiful town in northern Arizona.

Email | Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | LinkedIn | Pinterest

*****

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Book Review – The Bronte Book Club for Hopeless Romantics

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As an avid reader (obviously) a series centered around a librarian and her book club just tickled me pink!

*****

The Bronte Book Club for Hopeless Romantics

by Laura Briggs

Blurb:

Quaint Lewis Cove is home to the charming three-story Victorian manor known as the Alice Wilshire Lending Library and its plucky librarian Peg Turner:  the current hostess of the weekly Bronte Book Club, better known as the ‘Hopeless Romantics’ of all ages. Nurse Annette has been too busy working for love; mechanic Tim has missed the boat somewhere in his past; art student Sophie comes off as too unique, while tech geek C.J. has fallen—hopelessly—for the too-cool-to-care Llourdes.

With her vacation plans indefinitely on hold for the summer, Peg has decided to transform the ‘Hopeless Romantics’ into hopeful ones. But while she’s trying to help her fellow readers find romance, she’s avoiding her matchmaker friend Caroline’s latest blind date—only to see her best friend Cam, the ruggedly-cute-but-sometimes-curmudgeonly coffee shop owner fixed up instead. And that’s something Peg isn’t sure she likes.

Questions about love and last chances on her mind, and way too many books piled on her desk, will Peg succeed in finding romantic hope for anyone, including herself?

*****

Excerpt:

“Evening everybody!” Caroline breezed into the coffee shop in her usual manner. She pulled off her summer scarf and dropped her shopping bags on the floor as she sat down at our table. “Did you see the repair work they’re doing on the highway? I had to cut across Ocean Lane in Valencia to get here from the city.”

Next to Stacy — and Cam — Caroline was my oldest friend in Lewis Cove. We had known each other in college; now she worked as a realtor with an office closer to the metropolis than town, and believed firmly that one’s social life should never slow down, no matter the time of day or the fatigue one might be feeling.

“Just a cup of black coffee for me, and a low-cal snack,” she said to Cam. “What’s with the book?” Her gaze fell on the copy of Jane Eyre.

“It’s mine,” I said. “I’m trying to recruit new members for the book club.”

“Was that tonight?” said Caroline. “Is that why you said ‘no’ to going out with Greg’s friend tonight?” Greg was Caroline’s current boyfriend — his friend was a blind date setup I had been stealthily avoiding for two weeks.

“A date?” said Cam. “You’re dating again?” He looked at me.

“For the record, I was never not dating,” I clarified. “I just haven’t met anybody with whom the interest is mutual. Not in awhile, anyway.”

“To qualify as ‘dating,’ you have to go out with them,” said Caroline. “Not just say you’re going to do it sometime, then keep giving them excuses for why you’re not available.”

“Those aren’t excuses, Caroline, those are reasons,” I said. “Friday nights, I’m always at the book club. I’m the librarian, I have to be there to unlock the door and let them in.”

“So? Get them to meet somewhere else. They can meet in Cam’s coffee shop. Lots of atmosphere and great beverages.”

“The music will drive them out,” said Cam, placing a low-fat granola bar in front of her. “I’m instituting an ‘all rock and roll, all the time’ policy come Monday.”

I hid my smile for this answer. “Besides, I like the club,” I continued. “I like being part of their meetings.”

“The Hopeless Romantics?” said Caroline. “There’s a reason why it has that nickname, Paige. They’re people who can’t find the right person because they’re too picky, or because they’re too blind to see the right person when it’s right in front of them. You are not hopeless — and you’re definitely not a fully-fledged romantic.”

“I have a romantic streak,” I said. “And it’s mean to call them hopeless just because they have a lot of free time and no romantic ties. They’re just trying to spend an evening with people they have something in common with. That’s the whole point of the club — an exchange of mutual ideas on literature.”

“Will you exchange mutual ideas with Greg’s friend next week?” she asked me.

“Maybe,” I said. “I’ll call him. We’ll find an evening we’re both free.” From behind the counter, Cam coughed noisily. I wondered if he had tried a bite of the low-fat granola bars he kept on hand for calorie-conscious customers.

Caroline leaned forward and lowered her voice. “Speaking of dating,” she said, “I have the perfect person for Cam.” She glanced to the side, making sure he was busy with a new customer.

Did I mention Caroline is an obsessive matchmaker, too?

*****

Review:

This one reminded me of an entertaining comedic drama (dramedy?) on TV.  We get a fun diversion, with a complete storyline, but there is still so much going on that we just have to wait for the next installment.

Paige fits the lead character role well.  She’s got her friend’s best interest at heart while she meddles, perfectly matching up two of them thanks to some insights from their reading habits (she is a librarian so it works).  Unfortunately her own love life is a little lacking and hopefully it’ll play out over the next couple of books as she works to find a HEA for the rest of the book club.

Briggs brings together a cute premise and fun characters to deliver a satisfying quick summer read.  Perfect for a trip to the pool – introducing us to a lot of fun characters and giving the satisfaction of a successful romantic pairing, while also leaving us curious about who will fall next.

*****

Author Info:

Laura Briggs is the author of several women’s fiction and chick lit novels, with themes that range from wedding planning to modern Jane Austen. Even though she tends to write stories with a romance theme, as a reader she has a soft spot for mysteries, including those by Agatha Christie and Mary Roberts Rinehart. She also enjoys books by Jane Austen, Anne Tyler, Amy Tan, and too many others to name. In her free time, she likes to experiment with new recipes and tries to landscape her yard (a never-ending project).

Author Website: http://paperdollwrites.blogspot.com/

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Spotlight – Dating the Wrong Mr. Right

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This one is getting some fabulous review – you don’t want to miss Amanda Ashby’s Sisters of Wishing Bridge Farm series!

*****

Dating the Wrong Mr. Right

Sisters of Wishing Bridge Farm, #3

by Amanda Ashby

Publication Date: June 19, 2017

Genres: Adult, Entangled: Bliss, Contemporary, Romance

Blurb:

Pepper Watson has lost everything–her job, her fiancé, and the future she’d so carefully planned. Now she’s back at Wishing Bridge trying to figure out her next step. Her new plan does not include the ever-so-sexy Ben Cooper. Nope. She’s getting her life back on track, and getting out of this little town as fast as possible.

Ben Cooper is doing his best to build his business and help his parents. The last thing he needs is the distraction that is Pepper Watson. She might be prickly every time he’s in her presence, but he sees another side of her. The side that has set aside her dreams to help her sisters. And then there’s the fact that kissing her is pretty much the best thing that’s ever happened to him.

He’s putting down roots. She’s running away. It’s going to take more than a wish for these two to find their happily ever after.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2rpiFrF

Paperback: http://amzn.to/2rpxASB

B&N: http://bit.ly/2rFTosp

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Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2rAHBQS

Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/2rAoBSS

Amazon AU: http://amzn.to/2tbYzCm

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2tctVci

*****

Excerpt:

She tilted her head a fraction. Was it an invitation? He leaned toward her.

“Coop, we shouldn’t,” she croaked, not moving.

“Oh, we really should,” he assured her as his mouth found hers.

Want exploded through him. Her lips were soft against his and she tasted of beer and freshness. Last time they’d kissed, it was over too soon. This time it’s on my terms. Her mouth opened to his as the beer fell from her hand. Coop discarded his own bottle and slid his hands around her back, drawing her closer.

The stars, the night sky, everything faded away.

She ran her hands down his back, turning him on more than it had the right to. He deepened the kiss before planting a trail of kisses down her neck. His fingers slid down the inside of her coat, but before he could tug her shirt from the waistband of her slacks, her cell phone beeped. It was like a siren in the night, and they both froze.

Pepper was the first to respond as she pulled away from him and a series of emotions flickered across her face.

“Um, I should check this. It could be urgent.”

“More urgent than this?” Coop tried to get his breathing under control.

She opened her mouth and then shut it again. Obviously lost for words. She stood up, carefully stepping over the beer that had spilled out onto the ground.

“I’m sorry, I’m not sure what came over me, but I should go.”

Coop bit back his disappointment with a shrug. “Sure. But you know Pepper. Kissing me once might have been an accident, but twice…”

“Twice was a mistake. It won’t happen again,” she said in a regal voice.

“You’re the boss,” he said. She turned her back and hurried toward her car and driveway.

Okay, so that had happened. If only I knew what the hell that was.

*****

Author Info:

Amanda Ashby was born in Australia but now lives in New Zealand where she writes romance, young adult and middle grade books. She also works in a library, owns far too many vintage tablecloths and likes to delight her family by constantly rearranging the furniture.

She has a degree in English and Journalism from the University of Queensland and is married with two children. Her debut book was nominated for a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice award, and her first young adult book was listed by the New York Public Library?s Stuff for the Teen Age. Because she’s mysterious she also writes middle grade books under the name, Catherine Holt and hopes that all this writing won’t interfere with her Netflix schedule.

She also runs writing workshops and loves to speak to people about Buffy (er, she means writing). See her Website for more information.

Website | FacebookPinterest | Instagram | Goodreads | Newsletter | Amazon Author Profile

*****

Giveaway:

$15 Amazon Gift Card

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*****

Falling for the Best Man (Sisters of Wishing Bridge Farm, #1):

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2rFINO3

The Wedding Planner’s Baby (Sisters of Wishing Bridge Farm, #2):

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2sHZk96

*****

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Spotlight – The Colorado Mountain Series

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Announcing three beautiful new trade paperback editions from The Colorado Mountain Series!

*****

THE GAMBLE

Life isn’t meant to be perfect. It’s meant to be lived . . .

Nina Sheridan thought she’d found the perfect man who would become the perfect husband. She was wrong. When Nina realizes the man she planned to grow old with doesn’t know her at all, it’s time to rethink her idea of perfect. And what better place to get her life in order than a remote Colorado mountain town halfway around the world?

Gnaw Bone, Colorado, may not be flashy or cosmopolitan, but it’s got a brand of hospitality all its own. Nina isn’t entirely sure she’s ready to trade the life she thought she wanted in England for cozy evenings in her mountain retreat, and she definitely isn’t sure she’s ready to handle the connection she feels to the owner of her rental house, Max Holden . . .

Nina didn’t come to Colorado to find love, but even the best-laid plans can go awry. Now, if Nina can let go of her past, Max-and a future in Gnaw Bone-might just be the perfect second chance she’s been waiting for.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2pGUXVV

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SWEET DREAMS

When you lose everything, anything is possible.

Lauren Grahame needs a whole new life. A simpler life. After leaving her cheating husband, she moves to Carnal, Colorado, takes a job as a waitress, and realizes she might have finally found the hometown she’d been searching for. Except things are about to get a lot more complicated . . .

Lauren’s fresh start does not include her growing feelings for her boss, Tate Jackson. She’ll take the new friends, the new job, not to mention the incredible banana bread from the local coffee shop, but love is not on the agenda.

However, the people of Carnal know chemistry when they see it, and they’re not about to let Tate and Lauren miss their chance.

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LADY LUCK

All you need is a little luck.

Lexie Berry has had nothing but bad luck. You name it, Lexie has probably survived it-or worse. But there’s only so much bad luck a girl can take, and now one promise is all that stands between her and a brand-new life.

When that promise brings her to Carnal, Colorado, Lexie isn’t sure the rough, yet strangely charming, town is for her. But there’s something Carnal has that might just make staying around worth it . . . and that’s Ty Walker.

For five years, Ty was imprisoned for a crime he didn’t commit. Now he wants revenge on the people who framed him. Lexie knows there’s a difference between vengeance and justice, and she’ll do everything she can to make sure Ty gets the latter. And with the good people of Carnal on their side, Lexie and Ty might finally find their luck is changing for the better.

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*****

Author Info:

Kristen Ashley grew up in Brownsburg, Indiana, and has lived in Denver, Colorado, and the West Country of England. Thus she has been blessed to have friends and family around the globe. Her posse is loopy (to say the least) but loopy is good when you want to write.

Kristen was raised in a house with a large and multigenerational family. They lived on a very small farm in a small town in the heartland, and Kristen grew up listening to the strains of Glenn Miller, The Everly Brothers, REO Speedwagon, and Whitesnake.

Needless to say, growing up in a house full of music and love was a good way to grow up.

And as she keeps growing up, it keeps getting better.

Social Media Links

www.kristenashley.net

www.facebook.com/kristenashleybooks

www.twitter.com/kristenashley68

*****

Giveaway:

Enter to win 1 of 5 sets of The Gamble, Sweet Dreams, and Lady Luck! http://bit.ly/2r26Avw

*****

Book Review – Her Baby, His Love

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Her Baby, His Love

by Lynne Marshall

All Taylor Clark ever wanted was a normal life and a traditional family, but so far she’s had neither. Soon after discovering that her boyfriend was secretly engaged and she moves to Charity, Montana for a fresh start, she realizes she’s pregnant. As her new friendly and sexy landlord helps her settle in, they become friends, although Taylor has to keep reminding herself to keep her distance. The last thing she needs is to start something new.

As an ex-con, Joe Collins knows a little something about fresh starts. Despite his determination to keep his head down, he can’t ignore Taylor’s natural beauty or obvious vulnerability. In short time, a tentative friendship blooms along with something more precious—trust.

When Taylor’s ex comes to town, he threatens everything that Joe and Taylor have built together. Joe steps up to care for and protect her, even though he risks losing more than the woman he loves.

I’m giving this one 3.5 stars … I’m not quite comfortable with giving it 4 but it definitely doesn’t deserve 3.

As you can imagine this story spends a lot of time delving into trust issues.  Taylor has had some really bad luck with men and so she’s pretty much at the point of thinking they are all going to treat her poorly.  Then when she does meet one that seems like he could be different, he turns out to be an ex-con.  Not having known anyone who has gone to jail, she’s pretty much only got stereotypes to go off of.  It’s a slow process as Joe shows Taylor what an up-standing guy he is, regardless of a stupid choice in his youth.

There is a lot of back-and-forth on the romance side of things as they both struggle with timing and their own histories.  I can understand where Taylor comes from on a lot of stuff but Joe really is a good man and he shows it.  There comes a point where I think that some readers might be tired of her attitude but luckily she figures things out.

Spotlight – Kelly Bowen Sweepstakes + Vote on Kelly’s New Duke

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Forever Romance is giving away a Kelly Bowen historical romance prize pack and asking for your help in choosing the cover design for Kelly’s February 2018 release. Click the link below to enter for a chance to win and you can cast your vote on the dreamiest duke while you’re at it!

Click here to enter for a chance to win.

Prize pack consists of a Forever/Forever Yours tote bag and the following six (6) Forever titles from Kelly Bowen:

Duke of My Heart by Kelly Bowen

A Duke to Remember by Kelly Bowen

Between the Devil and the Duke by Kelly Bowen

A Good Duke is Hard to Find by Kelly Bowen

I’ve Got My Duke to Keep Me Warm by Kelly Bowen

You’re the Earl That I Want by Kelly Bowen

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. A PURCHASE DOES NOT INCREASE CHANCE OF WINNING. Void where prohibited. Must be legal US resident 18 years or older as of June 16, 2017 to enter. Sweepstakes begins June 16, 2017 at 12:01 am ET and ends June 30, 2017 at 11:59 pm ET. Visit http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/features/forever-romance/kellybowen/ for Official Rules and details. Sponsor: Hachette Book Group, Inc., 1290 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10104.

*****

Author Info:

Kelly Bowen grew up in Manitoba, Canada. She attended the University of Manitoba and earned a Master of Science degree in veterinary physiology and endocrinology. But it was Kelly’s infatuation with history and a weakness for a good love story that led her down the path of historical romance. When she is not writing, she seizes every opportunity to explore ruins and battlefields.

Currently, Kelly lives in Winnipeg with her husband and two boys, all of whom are wonderfully patient with the writing process. Except, that is, when they need a goalie for street hockey.

Follow:

www.kellybowen.net

www.facebook.com/authorkellybowen

www.twitter.com/kellybowen09

Pre-order Kelly Bowen’s February 2018 release

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Spotlight – Lost and Found Sisters

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From New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis comes her first women’s fiction novel—an unforgettable story of friendship, love, family, and sisterhood—perfect for fans of Colleen Hoover, Susan Mallery, and Kristan Higgins. Order your copy today!

*****

Lost and Found Sisters

by Jill Shalvis

Blurb:

They say life can change in an instant…

After losing her sister in a devastating car accident, chef Quinn Weller is finally getting her life back on track. She appears to have it all: a loving family, a dream job in one of L.A.’s hottest eateries, and a gorgeous boyfriend dying to slip an engagement ring on her finger. So why does she feel so empty, like she’s looking for a missing piece she can’t find?

The answer comes when a lawyer tracks down Quinn and reveals a bombshell secret and a mysterious inheritance that only she can claim. This shocking revelation washes over Quinn like a tidal wave. Her whole life has been a lie.

On impulse, Quinn gives up her job, home, and boyfriend. She heads up the coast to the small hometown of Wildstone, California, which is just a few hours north, but feels worlds apart from Los Angeles. Though she doesn’t quite fit in right away, she can’t help but be drawn to the town’s simple pleasures…and the handsome, dark-haired stranger who offers friendship with no questions asked.

As Quinn settles into Wildstone, she discovers there’s another surprise in store for her. The inheritance isn’t a house or money, but rather something earthshattering, something that will make her question everything she thought she knew about herself, about her family. Now with a world of possibilities opening up to Quinn, she must decide if this new life is the one she was always meant to have—and the one that could finally give her the fulfillment she’s searched so long for.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2rlgg4C
Barnes and Noble: 
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Kobo: 
http://bit.ly/2qT3c5l
Google: 
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ibooks: 
http://apple.co/2qjOYaT
BooksaMillion:
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IndieBound:
http://bit.ly/2rYWg48

ADD LOST AND FOUND SISTERS TO YOUR GOODREADS: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32319723-lost-and-found-sisters

*****

Excerpt:

“You’re up, honey,” Carolyn said and gestured to the front counter.

Trev, the carefully tousled barista, was an L.A. beach bum and aspiring actor forced to work to support his surfing habit. His hands worked at the speed of light while the rest of him seemed chilled and relaxed. “Hey, darlin’, how’s life today?”

“Good,” Quinn said. She didn’t want to brag, but she’d totally gotten out of bed today with only two hits of the snooze button. “How did your audition go?”

“Got the part.” Trev beamed. “You’re looking at the best fake Thai delivery guy who ever lived. It means my luck as changed, so say you’ll finally go out with me.”

Quinn smiled—see, she totally did smile!—and shook her head. “I’m not—“

Trev piped in along with her, in perfect sync, “—dating right now,” and then shook his head.

“Well, I’m not,” she said.

“It’s not right, a hot chick like you. You’re way too young to be in a rut. You know that, right?”

“I’m not in a rut.” She was just…not feeling life right now, that’s all. “And hey, I didn’t tell you my order yet,” she said when she realized he was already working on her coffee.

“Has it changed?” he asked. “Ever?”

No, but now she wanted to order something crazy just to throw him off, except she wanted her usual, dammit.

Okay, so maybe she was in a rut. But routine made life simpler and after the complications she’d been through, simple was the key to getting out of bed and putting one foot in front of the other every day.

That and the badly needed caffeine, of course.

“You should go out with him,” Carolyn whispered behind her. She smiled kindly when Quinn craned her neck and looked at her. “You only live once, right?”

“Not true,” Quinn said. “You lie every day. You only die once.”

Carolyn’s smile slowly faded in understanding. “Then make it count, honey. Go hog wild.”

Hog wild, huh? Quinn turned back to Trev.

“I’m all for the hog wild,” he said hopefully.

Quinn went for it. “An extra shot and whip.”

Trev blinked and then sighed. “Yeah, we really need to work on your idea of hog wild.”

*****

Author Info:

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jill Shalvis lives in a small town in the Sierras full of quirky characters. Any resemblance to the quirky characters in her books is, um, mostly coincidental. Look for Jill’s sexy contemporary and award-winning books wherever romances are sold and click on the blog button above for a complete book list and daily blog detailing her city-girl-living-in-the-mountains adventures.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Newsletter SignUp

*****

They say life can change in an instant …

From New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis comes her first women’s fiction novel—an unforgettable story of friendship, love, family, and sisterhood.

Pre-order your copy in any format and receive an exclusive crossover Heartbreaker Bay meets Wildstone bonus scene, featuring Archer and Elle going to Wildstone, CA, the town in which Lost and Found Sisters takes place – read about their night in a haunted B&B!

Simply enter your order number OR upload a screenshot of your proof of purchase. Entries must be received by June 25th and you will receive content via email on June 27th!

Preorder and fill out the form here: https://a.pgtb.me/MdHvvG

*****

Schedule:

June 12th

East Coast Book Chicks – Review & Excerpt

Fictional Rendezvous Book Blog – Excerpt

I Love Romance – Review & Excerpt

Lucky 13 book reviews and news – Excerpt

June 13th

Adventures in Writing – Excerpt

Book Angel Booktopia – Review & Excerpt

Cocktails and Books – Review & Excerpt

Melena’s Reviews – Review & Excerpt

The Book Hammock – Review & Excerpt

June 14th

Aly’s Miscellany – Excerpt

Books,Dreams,Life – Excerpt

Coffee Books Life – Excerpt

She Reads too Much Romance – Review

The Readdicts – Review & Excerpt

June 15th

Crystal’s Chaotic Confessions – Excerpt

Debbie’s World of Books – Review & Excerpt

Ramblings From This Chick – Excerpt

Red Hot + Blue Reads – Review & Excerpt

Shannon’s Book Blog – Review & Excerpt

June 16th

A Literary Perusal – Review & Excerpt

Brittany’s Book Blog – Excerpt

I Smell Sheep – Review & Excerpt

Reads & Reviews – Excerpt

June 17th

Bookishly Yours – Review & Excerpt

Lover of Big Books Cannot Lie – Review & Excerpt

Romantic Reads and Such – Excerpt

Two Girls with Books – Review

June 18th

A geordielass honest blog on reviews – Review

Nicole’s Book Musings – Excerpt

Robinson Reviews – Review

Those Crazy Book Chicks – Review & Excerpt

With Love for Books – Review

June 19th

Becky on Books – Review & Excerpt

BooksPieAndCoffee – Review

IrishdaisylovesRomance – Review & Excerpt

JOJO THE BOOKAHOLIC – Review & Excerpt

Writing My Own Fairy Tale – Review & Excerpt

June 20th

Marieke’s Books – Review & Excerpt

Reviews from the Heart – Review & Excerpt

Sascha Darlington’s Microcosm Explored – Review & Excerpt

Thoughts of a Blonde – Review & Excerpt

Two Book Pushers – Review & Excerpt

June 21st

AC Squared Book Blog – Review & Excerpt

Babbling about books and more– Excerpt

Literary Gossip – Excerpt

Love’s A State Of Mind – Review

June 22nd

Books 2 Blog – Review & Excerpt

Cara’s Book Boudoir – Review & Excerpt

I’m A Book Shark – Review & Excerpt

Love Affair With Fiction – Review & Excerpt

What Is That Book About – Excerpt

June 23rd

Books and Tequila – Review & Excerpt

Once Upon A Page – Review & Excerpt

Reading To Unwind – Review & Excerpt

Sweet Red Reads – Review & Excerpt

Talking Books Blog – Excerpt

June 24th

G & T’s Indie Café – Excerpt

Reading Between the Wines Book Club – Excerpt

Red’s Romance Review’s – Review & Excerpt

Renee Entress’s Blog – Review & Excerpt

TjLovesToRead – Review

Book Review – Read, Write, Love at Seaside

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Sweet with Heat: Seaside Summers features a group of fun, flirty, and emotional friends who gather each summer at their Cape Cod cottages. They’re sassy, flawed, and so easy to relate to, you’ll be begging to enter their circle of friends! Start reading FREE with Read, Write, Love at Seaside

*****

Read, Write, Love at Seaside

Sweet with Heat: Seaside Summers #1

by Addison Cole

Releasing June 14th, 2017

World Literary Press

Blurb:

Bestselling author Kurt Remington lives to write. He spends twelve hours a day in front of his computer, rarely leaving the seclusion of his beach-front property, where he’s come to finish his latest thriller — that is, until free-spirited Leanna Bray nearly drowns in the ocean trying to save her dog. Kurt’s best-laid plans are shot to hell when he comes to their rescue. Kurt’s as irritated as he is intrigued by the sexy, hot mess of a woman who lives life on a whim, forgets everything, and doesn’t even know the definition of the word organized.

Leanna’s come to the Cape hoping to find a fulfilling career in the jam-making business, and until she figures out her own life, a man is not on the menu. But Leanna can’t get the six-two, deliciously muscled and tragically neat Kurt out of her mind. She tells herself she’s just stopping by to say thank you, but the heart-warming afternoon sparks an emotional and unexpectedly sweet ride as Kurt and Leanna test the powers of Chemistry 101: Opposites Attract.

*Read, Write, Love at Seaside by Addison Cole is the sweet edition of New York Times bestselling author Melissa Foster’s steamy romance novel Read, Write, Love. The stories and characters remain the same, and convey all of the passion you expect between two people in love, without any explicit scenes or harsh language.

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34845082-read-write-love-at-seaside

Goodreads Series Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/203990-sweet-with-heat-seaside-summers

*FREE in ebook format

Buy Links:   AMAZON | B&N | KOBO | iBOOKS | GPLAY

*****

Excerpt:

Leanna Bray was wet, cold, and floundering. Literally. She’d been floundering for twenty-eight years, so this was nothing new, but being pummeled by rain, wind, and waves, chasing a dog that never listened? That was new.

“Pepp—” A wave knocked her off her feet and she went under the water, taking a mouthful of saltwater along with her. She tumbled head down beneath the surface.

Now Pepper and I will both drown. Freaking perfect.

Something grabbed her arm, and she reflexively fought against it, sucking in another mouthful of salty water as she broke through the surface, arms flailing, choking, and pushing against the powerful hand that yanked her to her feet.

“You okay?” A deep, annoyed voice carried over the din of the crashing waves.

Cough. Cough. “Yeah. I—” Cough. Cough. “My dog.” She blinked and blinked, trying to clear the saltwater and rain from her eyes. The man’s mop of wet, dark hair came into focus. He held tightly to her arm while scanning the water in the direction of where she’d last seen Pepper. His clothes stuck to his body like a second skin, riding the ripples of his impressive chest and arms as he held her above the surface with one arm around her ribs.

“Come on.” She coughed as he plowed through the pounding surf with her clutched against his side. She slid down his body, and he lifted her easily into his arms, carrying her like he might carry a child, pressing her to his chest as he fought against the waves.

She pushed against his chest, feeling ridiculous and helpless…and maybe a little thankful, but she was ignoring that emotion in order to save Pepper.

“My dog! I need to get my dog!” she hollered.

Mr. Big, Tall, and Stoic didn’t say a word. He set her on the wet sand and tossed her a rain-soaked towel. “It was dry.” He pointed behind her to a wooden staircase. “Go up to the deck.”

She dropped the towel and plowed past him toward the water. “I gotta get my dog.”

He snagged her by the arm and glared at her with the brightest blue eyes she’d ever seen—and a stare so dark she swallowed her voice.

“Go.” He pointed to the stairs again. “I’ll get your dog.” He took a step toward the water, and she pushed past him again.

“You don’t have t—”

He scooped her into his arms again and carried her to the stairs.

*****

Review:

This is the absolutely perfect beach/summer read (even more so since it is set in the Cape … on the Cape?  Whatever – there is sand involved.)  Cole brings the right amount of fun in the sun, humor with heart, and characters that capture your attention.

Kurt is fantastic from the beginning.  He’s a little OCD and likes to be alone while he writes.  And pretty much all he does is write, but when happy-go-lucky Leanna comes crashing into his life she quickly stirs things up.  Like the awesome guy he is, though, he takes it in stride – there is no angst or drama over her bubbliness to his stoicism.  Instead she helps to bring him out of his shell, reminding him that there is more to life than his books, and that he needs to get out to enjoy it.

And he complements her as well.  She’s been drifting for years but she seems to have found a calling in her jam business.  Unfortunately she doesn’t have a clue what it means to really go after this as a career, but with some help from her friends and the support that Kurt gives her she starts to figure things out.

This is a super sweet romance, with just enough heat to keep your attention but without ever getting too explicit.  (I haven’t read this series by Foster, but I’m definitely curious if Kurt was a little less refined in the original  🙂 )  The story is very smooth and moves along at a good pace – very realistic with Kurt and Leanna getting to know each other, figuring out whether they fit together, and (of course) falling in love.  There’s a ton of friends introduced here so it looks like we’ll have plenty of stories to keep us entertained … and I’m looking forward to every one!

*****

Author Info:

Addison Cole is the sweet alter ego of New York Times and USA Today bestselling and award-winning author Melissa Foster. She writes humorous and emotional sweet contemporary romance. Her books do not include explicit sex scenes or harsh language. Addison spends her summers on Cape Cod, where she dreams up wonderful love stories in her house overlooking Cape Cod Bay.    

Website: https://addisoncole.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AddisonColeAuthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16711767.Addison_Cole

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/addison-cole

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Addison_Cole_

Newsletter: www.AddisonCole.com/Newsletter

*****

Giveaway:

Win an Addison Cole Tote Bag Prize Pack

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/521ac4c81311/

*****

Click on the banner below to check out the rest of the tour … including a look at Book 2 in the Sweet with Heat Seaside Summers series!

Spotlight – Talen

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Ooooh, a sexy, broody vampire who’s all alpha … Zanetti’s newest looks promising for danger and suspense and, of course, the sexy!

*****

Talen

Dark Protectors series

by Rebecca Zanetti

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Pub Date: 6/6/17

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32426225-talen?ac=1&from_search=true

Blurb:

She’ll love him forever . . . but he can’t make her obey . . .

The war is over. Danger has passed. Cara Kayrs is healed after decades of illness and ready for a break.

Too bad her brooding, alpha vampire husband can’t seem to change gears. In their twenty-five years together Talen Kayrs has learned to sense every shiver of her body, to ignite her desire with a word or a look. She would think he could learn she’s not some fragile damsel in distress.

But Talen is on edge, watching their backs, treating her like she’s made of glass. Like there’s something following them, a deadly threat that somehow none of their intelligence has uncovered. It’s enough to drive a woman crazy, and Talen has plenty of those tendencies already.

But what’s even more maddening is that he seems to be right . . .

Amazon * Apple * B&N * Google * Kobo

*****

Excerpt:

Talen couldn’t shake the itch between his shoulder blades. Taking his mate from the safety of their headquarters didn’t set well with him, and his muscles tensed in one long line.

“Would you relax?” she whispered from the passenger seat, her head back on the leather and her eyes closed in pleased abandonment.

Her legs were up on the dash, her feet in little sandals that showed off bright pink toenails. Sexy and pink. Her long auburn hair cascaded over her shoulders, and he fought the urge to tug on a strand.

The woman was right. The war had ended, and he really did need to relax. He watched the road outside and yet kept a close eye on his woman out of his peripheral vision. “It occurs to me that you think things have changed.”

She opened her eyelids then . . . her eyes a stunning blue. “Huh?”

He cleared his throat and made sure her seat belt was firmly around her small body. “The war is over, you’re well, and you think things are different.” In fact, his woman hadn’t been healthy since right after they’d mated, and for years, he’d been more than gentle with her. At the thought that she was whole, finally, his heart started to thrum.

“Of course things are different.” She gestured out with one arm.

“We’re on a road trip, without guards, without death hanging over our heads.” Her laugh was throaty and full. “Emma and I are taking a Vegas trip next month for a girls’ weekend.”

“Absolutely not.”

She gaped. “I did not ask permission, Kayrs.”

He bit back a wince. Whenever Cara used his last name, he was about to end up in the doghouse. Yet she was no longer vulnerable or weak, and he was finished placating her. “Mate? I have no intention of allowing you to go anywhere for a girls’ anything.” The second the word allow was out of his mouth, the tension in the car ratcheted up several degrees.

“Oh, you did not,” she sputtered, her eyes narrowing.

He sighed and turned to pin her with a look. He’d forgotten her stubbornness in the last difficult years when she’d been fighting a deadly virus that had almost taken her life. Now that she was healthy, memories of their first months together, before she had become infected, filtered through his mind. “I was fairly certain I tamed you way back when,” he said thoughtfully.

Red infused her face. “I’m about to kick your ass, Kayrs.”

Maybe not. Interesting. At the thought, his entire body tightened, and his cock started to throb. “Cara.”

Her shiver enticed him. “What?”

“I strongly advise you not to push me.” It was only fair to warn her, and he went on instinct. After nearly dying when the war had ended, he’d been restless since. For so many years, he’d treated his mate with more gentleness than he would’ve thought possible as she’d endured the virus.

Now that she was healthy, a primal part of him, one much closer to the surface than he liked, wanted to claim her again with all the dominance that was inherent to his species. “Okay?”

She breathed out. “Oh, mate. You’re the one who needs to stop pushing.”

He reached out, catching the long strands of her hair before she could avoid him. Her eyes widened, and he twisted his wrist with enough pressure to tilt back her head, fighting instincts he’d forgotten he had.

Curiosity and desire spilled from her.

His nostrils flared, catching his mate’s scent. It had been too long since they’d both been whole and healthy. He’d forgotten her defiant nature and how much she liked to challenge him. “Maybe this trip was a good idea,” he said softly, the beast inside him raging as her lids half-lowered.

*****

Author Info:

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Rebecca Zanetti has worked as an art curator, Senate aide, lawyer, college professor, and a hearing examiner – only to culminate it all in stories about Alpha males and the women who claim them. She writes contemporary romances, dark paranormal romances, and romantic suspense novels.

Growing up amid the glorious backdrops and winter wonderlands of the Pacific Northwest has given Rebecca fantastic scenery and adventures to weave into her stories. She resides in the wild north with her husband, children, and extended family who inspire her every day—or at the very least give her plenty of characters to write about.

Website * Twitter * Facebook * Amazon * Goodreads

*****

Giveaway:

Print copy of the book

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/23d974a9251/

*****

Click on the banner below to check out the rest of the tour