Book Review – Unzipped

Tags

, ,

Lauren is donating 100% of the first five days of sales for UNZIPPED from all retailers to California Fire Relief Charities, so one-click and you’ll get a sexy, witty rom-com and help a good cause!

*****

Unzipped

by Lauren Blakely

Blurb:

Wanted: hot nerd seeks dating coach.

Picture this – I’m ready to win back the love of my life, and I’m going big this time. We’re talking boom box, sing her name in the rain, let the whole damn neighborhood know I’m good and ready this time around. After all, if you’re going to grand gesture the ever-loving hell out of a second chance, you need to pull out all the stops. 

There’s only one little problem.

My college girlfriend isn’t the one who shows up when I play my “I’ll do anything to win you back” tune. The woman who flings open the second-floor window tells me my ex doesn’t live here anymore. But she’ll help me win her back. Anything for romance, anything for a guy so willing to go big for love. And that’s what I want at first. Until I get to know my new “romance coach” and discover she’s funny, clever, and keeps me on my toes. Now I don’t want to win anyone else’s heart. I want the woman who’s been helping me all along. Trouble is – she thinks I’m in love with someone else, and when we take off on a road trip, everything I think I know about women is about to be unzipped and turned inside out.

Unzipped is a standalone romance!

ADD IT TO YOUR GOODREADS TODAY!

ORDER YOUR COPIES HERE!

✦Kindle US ➜ https://amzn.to/2E9muKE

✦Kindle UK➜ https://amzn.to/2C0zIbk

✦Kindle CA➜ https://amzn.to/2zPcNhF

✦Kindle AU➜ https://amzn.to/2zPd9ov

✦ Apple Books ➜ https://apple.co/2QiENo1

✦ Kobo ➜ https://bit.ly/2OeFJFr

✦ Nook ➜ https://bit.ly/2EdTBge

✦ Google Play ➜ http://bit.ly/UnzippedGplay

✦ Paperback ➜ https://amzn.to/2Eayo6X

✦ The audiobook is narrated by Joe Arden and Andi Arndt! ✦
✦Audible ➜https://adbl.co/2wncWWL

*****

Excerpt:

As I peruse the scenes, the opening notes of a song filter from the front of my townhome. What the hell? Did I leave the streaming app open on my phone? I step away from the counter and head to the front door, looking for my phone, even though I swear I had it with me in the kitchen.

The song grows louder, and it’s not coming from my cell at all. It’s coming from outside. I peer through the peephole.

I jerk back.

Rub my eyes.

What the hell?

Am I really seeing what I’m seeing? I don’t think I had that much wine. I had one sip.

Fine, fine. One large sip. One very large, very hearty sip. All right, it was a gulp.

But I can’t possibly be hallucinating, can I?

I peek again, and holy smokes.

There’s a guy on my front lawn going full Lloyd Dobler.

The hair on the back of my neck stands on end, and my paranoid brain leaps three thousand steps ahead. Did he escape from Alcatraz? Is he going to bang down my door? Attack me?

I pivot and grab the baseball bat I keep handy. As the youngest sister of two older brothers, I’ve learned a few valuable lessons: boys are trouble, pizza is good cold, and always keep a baseball bat near the door and/or bed.

With my bat in hand, I scurry to the kitchen to grab my phone, then fly upstairs to the bedroom, taking the steps two by two.

I race into the bedroom, set the bat at my feet, and keep my phone clutched in my hand, ready to call 911 if need be. I pull back the white curtain a smidge.

And I nearly die laughing.

The song has stopped, and the Dobler wannabe is now kneeling on the ground, furiously hitting buttons on the boom box.

I peer around the curtain’s edge, and it’s like watching a sideshow act auditioning for my circus.

He hoists the boom box up above him again. A new tune plays. I cock my head, listening, and I cringe when I recognize the tune.

For real? Is he truly playing “Unzipped”? I could never stand that song when it was popular eight years ago. The music sounds like a can opener mating with a trombone. I wish he were playing Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes,” like Dobler did in the film.

But as I study the bizarre suburban male mating ritual, I decide to award him points for sheer balls. He also deserves bonus points because he chose to go without the super cheesy trench coat that Dobler wore. It worked for Cusack, but on anyone else that attire screams serial killer.

This guy seems harmless.

And admittedly, from my vantage point two stories above, he’s kind of handsome with the glasses, the thick, floppy hair, and the jeans that fit nicely. Strong jaw too.

Fine, fine. He’s more than kind of handsome. He’s 100 percent good-looking, in that hot nerd kind of way.

*****

Review:

I adored this book.  It’s got the perfect mix of humor and fun, with the perfect level of heat and the tiniest bit of angst.  From the cute-meet moment to the big gesture finish, I just couldn’t put it down.

Our heroine is quirky and enthusiastic about life.  She’s got just the right amount of goofiness that makes her playful but not annoying.  (I kinda want to be her when I grow up.)  He’s also just a hoot.  Sexy, smart, and also charmingly goofy – a great match for our girl.  The flirty banter just flows between them and it makes for a highly entertaining read.

With characters who are adorably dorky (and who own in), Unzipped is lighthearted, charming, funny, and easy to read.  I highly recommend it to anyone who loves romantic comedies and/or a lot of fun in their reads.

*****

Author Info:

 #1 New York Times Bestselling author, and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that’s hot, sweet and sexy. She lives in California with her family, including her smoking hot and funny husband and her two brilliant and kind children. She has plotted entire novels while walking her dogs — she might have four dogs, or maybe five. If she’s lucky, she’ll soon have six dogs. With fourteen New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than 100 times, and she’s sold more than 2.5 million books. In December she’ll release UNZIPPED, in January BIRTHDAY SUIT, and in March BEST LAID PLANS. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter! laurenblakely.com/newsletter

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Newsletter | Goodreads

*****

Advertisements

Review – SAPD SWAT Series

Tags

, , , ,

Looking for something with a little humor to lighten up the rest of your 2018?  Mays’ stories of sexy guys and the heroines who bring them to their knees definitely have a few giggles in store for you.

*****

Surrender to You

SAPD SWAT Series Book 1

by Nikki Mays

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Comedy

Blurb:

Mellie

Mellie has been hypnotized by a pair of gorgeous green eyes, attached to a very yummy package for months now. Unfortunately for her, her brain goes on hiatus anytime Morris Jackson is around. Looking like a bobble head whenever he asks her anything isn’t the best way to go about getting a man like him interested. Not like ruggedly handsome men go for quirky, accident prone introverts like her. Plus, even if she did have a snowballs chance in hell with him, him being her brothers SWAT teammate doesn’t bode well for her. A girl can dream though!

Morris

Those blue eyes sucker punched him the minute he looked into them. It felt like the ground had literally gone out from under him. Mellie is everything that he could ever want and everything that he shouldn’t have. Even if he didn’t know that she’s too good for a guy like him, her brother would never be okay with it. He is over protective and proud of it. But at some point you have to say screw the consequences and go after what you know is meant to be yours.

Too bad someone wasn’t happy for them when the found their way to one another. Someone will make sure they don’t stay together by any means necessary. They’ll even kill to get what they want.

Goodreads | Amazon

~

Addicted to You

SAPD SWAT Series Book 2

by Nikki Mays

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Comedy

Blurb:

Michelle is my addiction. She’s sweetness and light wrapped up in a delicious package. Almost as delicious as the confections she makes. Until now, I’ve kept my distance to make sure my darkness doesn’t taint her. She’s better than a killer who sits behind a scope.

I watch her from afar. Getting dragged under her spell a little further with every sweet smile and mischievous grin. I know I’ll cave one day, give into the craving to be near her. Being in her presence is a feeling like no other, one I can’t seem to resist.

Unfortunately, I’m not the only one living under her influence. While I was watching her, someone else was watching too. But she belongs with me, no matter what anyone else wants.

Now I need to make sure she gives me my next fix of her, even if she’s too stubborn to admit she wants to. She’s my addiction, cure and redemption all rolled into one. Her soul calls out to my own. I’ll make sure she’s as addicted to me as I am to her. She’ll crave me – if it’s the last thing I do.

Book Trailer: https://youtu.be/ZxGOuMBy8Pc

Goodreads | Amazon

*****

Review:

(I’ve seen a lot of reviews for both books claiming that a good editor would help a lot.  I don’t know if I had final versions or ARCs but there were a lot of mispellings and grammar issues.  As a regular reader of review copies though, this kind of thing doesn’t really affect me but I wanted to put this out there as a warning to others who may be a little more discerning 🙂 )

There are authors that write characters that could be straight out of Gilmore Girls (I’m looking at you Susan Mallery), always ready with a snappy comment.  Then there are those characters who are sophisticated, never saying a wrong thing and who always make me feel like I need to work better at this adulting thing.  Mays seems to have found a voice that is like that conversation you have with your bestie after a couple of glasses of wine.  It’s unfiltered and sometimes graceless, but it is real for the homespun characters she’s created.

In Surrender to YouMorris has had a thing for Mellie for a while but since she’s his friend’s sister he tried to stay away.  Unfortunately, his feelings are pretty apparent and after a while her brother is so tired of his awkwardness that he gives the OK.  Mellie is just as dorky when Morris is around so there is a lot of fun to be have while the two are dancing around each other.  And it doesn’t stop when they get together because these two definitely have a lot of personality.  (Mellie fighting with her brother is the best thing ever!)

Addicted to You is a fun follow-up that has a lot of the same vibe.  Damon is a pretty curt guy, but I love the way he and Michelle mesh.  She’s so full of sass that it helps bring him out of himself just a bit.  I got such a kick out of these two together, and their interactions with their friends are both sweet and hilarious.

The SAPD SWAT stories are delightfully fun romantic comedies with entertaining characters.  I enjoyed how the couples got together & watching them piece together a life with each other.  The friendships help make it a winner as well.  It is quite obvious that Michelle and Mellie have been friends for ages because those two are a hoot together.  The guys are your typical guy’s guys – giving each other a hard time, a little rough around the edges – but they have good hearts and are supportive of each other.  The lack of angst is a real winner for me and overall I felt the suspense parts, while not a huge part of the story (especially the second), are done well.

The SAPD SWAT series isn’t going be for everyone, but I think that it will be a huge hit with the right audience.

*****

Author Info:

Nikki Mays is a pen name that was created from her maiden name. She is a wife and mother, who lives in a small town in New Jersey. She has been with her husband for a decade and is surprised that he’s still alive. She began writing as a creative outlet after becoming a stay at home mom. She decided that she needed something exclusively for herself, not just being mommy. She has two crazy boxers that love to keep that “Evil” mailman out of the yard. Besides writing and spending time with her little hellions, she enjoys cooking & baking. She has recently taken up gardening and made her loving husband plant her a mini fruit tree orchard, as well as a garden taking up half an acre. Nikki loves to be stalked by her readers and encourages all interaction.

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Bookbub | Amazon | Goodreads

*****

Giveaway:

$5 Amazon

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/23d974a91080/

*****

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

Spotlight – One Wish

Tags

, ,

There’s a TON of 5 star reviews for this one.  Get your copy and find out why!

*****

One Wish

Love in the Vineyards series

by Kate Kisset

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Blurb:

Blend a former tight end with a bad reputation  and a gorgeous computer geek who doesn’t date. Toss in two matchmaking grannies who have only One Wish this Christmas.

Lilly Martelli’s first vacation in over a year has her on a mission to support her two busybody relatives in St. Helena. Helping the grannies bake stinky fruitcakes for their Christmas bake sale is bad enough, but being forced to co-host the fund-raiser with Mr.-Fun-in-the-pants Brett Benning might be too hot to handle.

Brett had hoped retiring from football, becoming a firefighter, and moving back to Napa Valley would be enough to repair his reputation. But he’s sick to death of the tiny town gossip, and tired of dating in the shallow end of the pool. He’s looking to score The One.

What are the odds he’d find her while helping with the annual bake sale? His smart and sexy co-chair has him eating out of her hands and asking for seconds of her grandmother’s nasty fruitcake. For the first time in his life, Brett might be in over his head.

One Wish is a standalone, sexy romcom. Although you don’t have to read any of Kate’s other stories to enjoy this one, Love in the Vineyards fans will love seeing their favorite characters from other stories, as they get to know the Santino brother’s lovable grandmother, Mimi, their quirky great-aunt Cha-Cha, and all their gorgeous cousins.

If you enjoy small town romances, romantic comedies, and sexy love stories with a full cast of strong heroines, drool worthy alpha heroes, and grannies in orthopedics, you’ll love One Wish.

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2EbTXUM

*****

Excerpt:

(Former Seattle Seahawks tight end, turned St. Helena firefighter, Brett Benning, is co-chairing the annual Sweet Paws Charity Bake Sale with self-professed computer genius Lilly Martelli. Here, Brett is picking Lilly up at her aunt’s magnificent mansion, so they can spend the day scouting new locations for their event. Unfortunately, Lilly’s grandmother and great-aunt have just baked another batch of their notorious fruitcakes.)

“We were just taking another batch of fruitcakes out of the oven.” Mimi sidled next to him so he was cozily flanked by both women.

The faint rum-and-mysterious, pungent smell he detected when he entered the house was impossible to ignore in the kitchen. Cha-Cha offered him a seat at the island in the middle of the room.

“Lilly will be down in a moment,” Mimi explained. “But you have time for a nice slice of cake.” She deposited a plate laden with a green and red speckled, shiny mound in front him.

The overpowering odor wafted up from the dish, making his eyes water. “No, I couldn’t.” He gently pushed the plate away. Mimi pushed it back.

“You can’t expect him to eat with his hands, Sister,” Cha-Cha chuckled, passing a fork to him. “Go ahead, darling, while it’s still warm,” she coaxed. “Dig in.”

He could swear the mound moved, but couldn’t trust his vision through the tears. What is that smell? “I had a very big breakfast at the station.” Brett eyed the doorway, praying Lilly was ready to leave and would walk through the door and save him.

Mimi brought her hands to her hips. Her expression conveyed in no uncertain terms that she was having none of it. With perfect posture, Cha-Cha took a stance next to her, her blue eyes flicking from the blob on the plate to his mouth. Brett glimpsed at the doorway again. No dice.

“Had I known I-I- would be in for such a treat,” he explained, knowing his excuse would have zero effect, “I would’ve saved room.” He waited a beat, hoping for a miracle, but it was no use. The sisters weren’t taking no for an answer, so he sliced into the cake with his fork and took the tiniest possible bite.

The texture was thick, gelatinous, and chewy at the same time. Little knobs of hard bits rolled over his tongue, and he tried not to wince. It was even worse than he remembered, which he would have thought impossible. The flavor was as revolting as the smell. “Hmmm.” He muttered while swallowing hard to force the cake down, but the slippery hunk caught in the back of his throat. He’d never given himself a Heimlich before, but right now he was glad he at least knew how.

“Well?” Cha-Cha’s long sleeves fluttered as she crossed her arms, never taking her eyes off him. “We used a new ingredient in this batch. You’re our test monkey.”

“Hmmm.” The last gulp did the trick, and the gooey globule slid down. That’s when the explosion in his mouth happened. It felt like someone lit a match, and heat tore through his sinuses. His body couldn’t hold back anymore and tried to repel the substance with a cough, which led to another. And another.

“That’s the rum.” Cha-Cha nodded to her sister.

“We should’ve warned you, dear. It has a little kick,” Mimi explained. “Oh, no. Are you crying?”

“Child-gag-hood mem-choke-or-cough-ies.”

“Are you all right?” Thanks to his coughing fit, he hadn’t noticed when Liliana walked in. She opened a drawer and pulled out a stack of paper napkins. “Here.” She passed a few to him.

“Thanks.” He gratefully used it to wipe his mouth. When he dried his tears, Liliana’s beautiful face came in view. Light streamed through the windows, casting a shine on her hair. Her leggings hugged every one of her curves, and the fluffy sweater made her look extra-adorable, and so sexy at the same time. Should he get up and hug her? After all, they were working together now. She probably smelled good, too. If his nose ever recovered from its beating, he hoped to find out…

Brett caught a glimpse of Cha-Cha checking out his reaction to her granddaughter and decided to stay put.

Lilly gave him a devious smile. Like everything else about her, it was pretty.

*****

Author Info:

Former San Francisco radio disc jockey Kate Kisset is the author of Love in The Vineyards, a series of small-town contemporary romance novels set in California wine country.

Readers call her novels, sexy, sweet and refreshing, with complex characters and plots that serve up humor without holding back on heart.

Kate divides her time between Northern and Southern California. Her stories feature strong heroes and heroines set in the small town, real-world vineyard settings found outside her front door.

When she’s not writing, Kate’s favorite job is being “The Mommy.” She enjoys reading, binge watching Netflix and the Hallmark Channel, wine tastings, cooking, listening to music, and hiking with her loyal companion Luciana Parmigiana, her rescue-dog-editor.

AMAZON PAGEWEBSITENEWSLETTERFACEBOOK GROUPFACEBOOK
INSTAGRAMTWITTERBOOKBUBPINTERESTGOODREADS

*****

Giveaway:

$25 Visa Giftcard

https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/4cf78adb739/

*****

Spotlight – Tall, Dark, & Tempting

Tags

,

TALL, DARK AND TEMPTING, an all-new fun and flirty standalone romance from New York Times bestselling author Erika Wilde is available now!

*****

Tall, Dark, and Tempting

by Erika Wilde

Blurb:

Dylan Stone and Serena Fields have been best of friends their entire lives. For Dylan, she’s the solid, dependable woman in his life. His person. The one who has been there for him through the best and worst of times and doesn’t see him for the millions he has in the bank. And even though he’s been secretly attracted to her for years, there are some lines that best friends don’t cross—even if he does spend most of their time together entertaining dirty thoughts about her that have no business being in his head.

Serena has been in love with Dylan Stone for as long as she can remember, but she’s searching for her happily-ever-after and that’s not her best friend’s thing. Unfortunately, her dating life is one disaster after another, yet Dylan is always there with a pint of her favorite ice cream and a listening ear after each and every disappointing encounter.

It’s the perfect arrangement, until one night changes everything.

Download your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2TcczJe

AppleBooks: https://apple.co/2DG9ZXA

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/TallDarkTempting

Nook: http://bit.ly/2FkYE0T

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2RQKplw

Google Play: http://bit.ly/2zLLBiI

Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2PVVdSe

*****

Author Info:

Erika Wilde is a New York Times Bestselling author. She is best known for her super sexy Marriage Diaries series and The Players Club series, and has also co-written the Dirty Sexy Series and the Book Boyfriend Series with Carly Phillips, her best friend and writing buddy for the past twenty years. She lives in Oregon with her husband and two daughters, and when she’s not writing you can find her exploring the beautiful Pacific Northwest. For more information on her upcoming releases, please visit website at http://www.erikawilde.com and sign up for her mailing list for updates and news!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2OLvHe9

Twitter: https://twitter.com/erikawilde1

BookBub: http://bit.ly/2Ply3lh

GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2MsZBqj
Friend Erika on Facebook: http://bit.ly/2PkVyKZ

Visit her author page: http://bit.ly/2vVITpY

Join her reader group: http://bit.ly/2OLuIut

Stay up to date with Erika by joining her mailing list:http://bit.ly/2OJIsWE

https://www.erikawilde.com

*****

Spotlight – Trusting Jack

Tags

, ,

Today we have another holiday read getting some great reviews!

*****

Trusting Jack

MC Securities Book 1

by Ruby Moone

Length: 45,000 words approx.

Cover Design: Meredith Russell

Blurb:

With only a few days to go until Christmas, Michael Cross has to admit there is something amiss about his latest employee, Jack Whelan. Quiet, jumpy, thin… he never seems to eat. He is also incredibly gorgeous with dark spiky hair that Michael aches to touch. But as his boss, Jack is off limits. And when it comes to relationships, he…well, he sucks.

Jack Whelan is at the end of his tether. He’s living rough in the middle of winter, and paying off a massive debt, so getting a job with MC Securities is a lifeline. His new boss is also the hottest guy ever. Geeky, broody, and scarily clever.

When Michael stumbles upon the reality of Jack’s life, he offers to help. But as Michael’s feelings deepen, and Jack’s terrible past catches up with him, Michael has to decide between believing in the awful truth that is staring him in the face, or trusting Jack.

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

*****

Author Info:

My name is Ruby Moone and I love books. All kinds of books. My weakness is for romance, and that can be any kind, but I am particularly fond of historical and paranormal. I decided to write gay romance after reading some fantastic books and falling in love with the genre, so am really thrilled to have my work published here. The day job takes up a lot of my time, but every other spare moment finds me writing or reading. I live in the north west of England with my husband who thinks that I live in two worlds. The real world and in the world in my head…he probably has a point!

Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/RubyMoone/?ref=bookmarks

Twitter – @RubyMooneWriter

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/rubymoone/

*****

Giveaway:

Backlist ebook from Ruby Moone

https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/3e0e9a43517/

*****

Spotlight – Christmas in Smithville

Tags

, ,

I love this Christmas story – two people who doubt themselves finally finding a happy ending together.

*****

Christmas in Smithville

The Hometown Series Book 4

by Kirsten Fullmer

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Blurb:

Even though Gloria is determined to change her reputation, most of the women in town still think she’s a tramp. Sure, she may have dressed a little flashy and dated pretty much every single guy in town, but that’s the past. Now that she wants to make a fresh start, will Smithville give her a second chance?

Ned has heard all the gossip, but being the Sheriff’s Deputy, he sees all the kind things Gloria does behind the scenes for the folks of Smithville. It looks like the upcoming Christmas Pageant will offer him the opportunity to spend time with her, but can he overcome a frustrating stutter and talk to her, face to face?

Your favorite characters from the Hometown Series bring craziness, love, and Smithville Christmas style, to a whole new romance about overcoming your past and sharing your deepest secrets. Fall in love and be swept away with the Christmas Eve celebration of your dreams.

Video Trailer:  https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=k5PRT6W0mHY

Goodreads * Amazon

*****

Hometown Girl at Heart

Hometown Series Book 1

Goodreads * Amazon

Hometown Girl After All

Hometown Series Book 2

Goodreads * Amazon

Hometown Girl Forever

Hometown Series Book 3

Goodreads * Amazon

Hometown Girl Again

Hometown Series Book 5

Goodreads * Amazon

*****

Excerpt:

Gloria could practically hear Ned’s heart beating; he was standing so close. What was he thinking? They’d formed a solid friendship, and now, if her instincts we right, he appeared to be crossing the friendship line. Had that been his intention all along? Was she so stupid that she’d let her guard slip and hadn’t seen that he just wanted to get her in bed? What was it about her that made men think she was fair game?

Scrubbing at a stubborn piece of food on a plate, she frowned.

Ned backed up half a step, picking up on her discomfort. “What’s wrong?”

The plate was clean, but she kept scrubbing anyway.

“Gloria?” He said her name more like a quiet demand than a question. She quit scrubbing the dish but didn’t look up.

He waited, and the silence in the small kitchen was deafening.  Finally, Gloria met his eye. Ned grinned an easy smile. “I’ll dry.” With that, he snatched up the dishtowel hanging on the oven door and reached for the plate.

She regarded him through narrowed eyes, trying to read his intent. He felt like the same old Ned; maybe she’d been wrong. With a shrug, she rinsed the plate and handed it to him. Her instincts had led her astray before. Crap, she’d never been able to tell when a man cared about her.

Ned dried the plate and reached up to put it in the cupboard.  Glancing back to Gloria, he caught her watching him, so he offered a reassuring, friendly grin.

“Damn,” she thought, turning her attention back to the dishes. The man really was dangerously good looking. Yet, here she stood with him in Nadine’s kitchen. The one woman she wanted to show she had changed. She had to prove to Nadine, and the other wives in town, that she wasn’t out to get a man. She needed to remember that, no matter how gorgeous Ned was. Besides, she valued his friendship far too much to mess it up. If she was capable of managing any type of relationship with a man, she wanted to be Ned’s friend.

Rinsing a plastic cup, she handed it off to him, and her eye caught his. Something in the depths of his gaze snagged her attention, and she couldn’t look away.  What was he trying to tell her?

“I’m firsty,” Christi’s tiny voice said from the doorway.

The cup dropped to the sink as both Ned and Gloria jerked their hands apart, both jumping back as they turned toward the little girl.

Christi stood in her pajamas, her eyes wide. “I need a dwink.”

Ned was the first to spring into action. “I’ll get you a d—drink, sweetheart. Do you want water or milk?”

“Miwk,” she said. Her little face was serious as her eyes bounced from Ned to Gloria and back.

Reaching into the cupboard by the sink, he retrieved a child’s sippy-cup and lid, then headed toward the fridge. For a moment he juggled the cup and lid to open the door and take out the milk, but he managed to make it to the table and fill the cup half full. Tossing a grin to Gloria, as if to say ‘I got this’, he twisted the cap onto the cup.

Christi padded across the room and reached for the cup.

Ned squatted down to eye level and offered her his trademark grin. “Here you go d—darlin’.”

The child gave him a serious once over as she took the cup, then tipped it up to drink.  Unfortunately, when the cup reached her mouth, the lid came off, and milk spilled all down the front of the little girl’s chin, neck, and footy pajamas.

Ned gasped and jumped back to miss the torrent of milk splashing across the floor.

“Oh dear!” Gloria cried, grabbing the towel off the counter and hurrying to the little girl’s side. “Did the lid come off?” Her eyes sprung to Ned’s, and she felt instantly silly for asking the obvious, so she turned back to the little girl. “Of course, it did. Let’s get you cleaned up.”

Ned floundered, “I didn’t m—mean to… I’m so s—sorry…”

Little Christi glared up at him, her expression clearly stating that she considered the man to be a complete jerk. Milk dripped onto the floor as she stood in a widening puddle. Her fuzzy pink pajamas and even her hair were soaked in milk.

Trying not to laugh, Gloria stripped off the sodden pajamas, soothing and assuring Christi that the deputy didn’t mean to spill her milk. After dabbing up all the milk she could with the now-soaked towel, she hefted the child up onto her hip and turned to Ned. The miserable look on his face gave her pause. “Don’t worry,” she assured both parties. “Nothing a bath won’t fix.”

As she headed across the room, Ned found his voice. “I’ll m—mop up…” but Gloria was gone, along with his chance to tell her how he felt.

*****

Author Info:

Kirsten grew up in the Western US and graduated from high school in 1984. She married soon there after and quickly built a family. With three young children and number four on the way, she returned to college in 1992. Her career as a draftsman included many settings ranging from a steel fabrication shops to prestigious engineering firms. Balancing family life with the workplace forced her to become the queen of multitasking. In 2001, bored with the cubical life, she moved on to teach drafting in technical college, then to opening her own consulting firm teaching 3D engineering software. Due to health problems, Kirsten retired in 2012 to travel with her husband for his job. She now works writing romance novels and enjoys spoiling her three grandchildren. Since 2017 Kirsten has lived and worked full time in a 40′ travel trailer with her husband and her little dog Bingo.

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram * Pinterest * Amazon * Goodreads

*****

Giveaway:

$15 Amazon gift card

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/23d974a91088/

*****

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

Book Review – My Forever Home

Tags

, , ,

By combining love, four legged friends, and a happy ending, Burns brings reader a great holiday read.

*****

My Forever Home

A Rescue Me Novel

by Debbie Burns

Blurb:

Love comes to the rescue.

Vet school drop-out Tess Grasso dreams of having her own pet therapy business, but she meets one disastrous obstacle after another. There’s no denying she has a way with animals, so in the meantime she puts her skills to use at a local no-kill shelter. Between helping her furry companions and a budding relationship with fellow dog lover Mason Redding, Tess begins to find fresh confidence…

What Tess doesn’t know is that Mason is recovering from an accident, hoping to get back to his pro-baseball career. He’s afraid the truth will ruin everything—and he’s right. But in the midst of hurt and betrayal, a free-spirited stray Husky enters their lives, and teaches them a few things about faith, love and forgiveness.

Amazon: amzn.to/2M2jncH

B&N: bit.ly/2LXvQOG

Apple: apple.co/2niQZ79

IndieBound: bit.ly/2LZDkB0

*****

Excerpt:

Tess lifted her mug of tea and carried it into the kitchen and away from the wall of windows and the remarkable St. Louis night skyline. If this were her place, she’d get nothing done in the evenings as she cuddled against that couch, sipping tea, and gazing at the beautiful lights.

“I had no idea a veggie meat loaf could smell so amazing. I’m so hungry, I could eat… Wait, I don’t think you can say you could eat a bear when you’re vegetarian, can you?”

Mason laughed and said she could say whatever she wanted. He was slicing through a cucumber with a gleaming chef knife.

“After we eat, I’ll be good to get back out there and search again.”

“Me, too. I’ve been standing here thinking what it could be like if we succeed. I want the dog. No question. And I know he’ll have a better life. A much better life. But I can’t help but wonder if he’ll want to be here.”

Tess joined Mason at the opposite counter. “He will. I’m sure he will.” Her hand closed reflexively over his forearm in reassurance, and she had to refrain from jerking it away. Seeing his strength was one thing. Feeling it was another.

What would he do if she slid between him and the countertop and allowed her lips to land where they wanted?

She forced a stepped back. “Do you have honey?”

“Yeah. In the pantry.”

His pantry was relatively uncluttered, and she spotted the honey right away. A family-sized box of Cocoa Puffs on the top shelf made her smile.

“What?” He pulled open a drawer and handed her a spoon. “Are you grinning at my juvenile selection of pantry foods?”

“That’s a big box of Cocoa Puffs.”

“Aren’t they a kitchen-pantry requirement?”

“I certainly wished that growing up, but not in my house. At least not unless it was a special occasion. My parents both worked full-time when I was growing up, and I went over to my grandparents’ house every day before school. My grandma’s idea of a quick breakfast is a bread roll with butter and jam or day-old biscotti to dip in her coffee.”

“Somehow that doesn’t make you sound deprived, if that’s what you were aiming for.”

Tess laughed as she squeezed a bit of honey into her mug. “How can I help?”

“I’m almost done, thanks. I have a red on the counter and a white in the fridge, if you’re up for wine.”

“I’d like to try this,” she said, picking a Barolo, “if you like red.”

“Sure.” He pulled a corkscrew from one of the top drawers. “How about you open it while I finish up?”

Mason had a beautiful salad prepared, and a small pot of gravy was warming on the stove. When he opened the oven, she spotted a ceramic bowl of mashed potatoes, another of green beans, and the veggie meat loaf.

As Tess opened the wine, she thought of her grandma. Nonna had taught her never to belittle someone’s effort in the kitchen by equating their work to trouble. “Wow,” she said instead. “Everything looks great. I can’t wait to try it.”

“Thanks. My, uh, slow season is in winter. Cooking is a hobby I’ve wanted to take up for a while. Like I said, before tonight I’d only ever made three different main dishes.”

“You said that, but you didn’t tell me what they are, aside from meat loaf, that is.”

“Want to guess?” Mason grinned as he carried over the salad bowl to a dining table long enough to bring to mind Beauty and the Beast. Mason had set two places, one at an end, the other in the seat adjacent to it. Tess’s heart beat at the intimacy of it.

“Absolutely. Let’s see. You grew up on a farm in rural Iowa, and your family is not Italian, so I’m guessing one of them is not lasagna.”

“You would be correct.”

“Hmm, what’s farmy to cook? I’m trying to picture the Cracker Barrel menu in my head. And before you ask, I only got to eat there when I went to Florida with my cousin’s family on vacation. Okay, let’s see. Chicken and dumplings?”

Mason chuckled. “Nope, though that’s one of my mom’s go-to winter meals.”

“Country-fried steak?”

“If we were playing hangman, you’d have a head and body.”

“Chicken pot pie?”

“And there’s a leg, or is it the arm next?”

Tess clicked her tongue and slid into the open seat next to him. “Pot roast?”

“Well done.”

“Really?” Tess waggled her eyebrows. “Pot roast and meat loaf. Two very hearty meals. Impressive.”

“I bet you hang before you guess the third.”

Tess pierced a bit of salad and silently counted off the meals she’d guessed. “Barbecue ribs?”

“Add the second leg. I can barbecue as well as the next guy, but I wasn’t counting it. Slathering a rack of ribs with some sauce and enjoying a beer while it sizzles over the coals isn’t the same as preparing a meal from scratch.”

“True, I guess.” She pointed her fork his way. “Don’t tell me. I’m going to get this.” She was halfway through a bite of salad when she smacked her palm against the table and hurriedly swallowed. “OMG, I’ve got it. I’ve totally got it. I know your third meal, Mason…” Tess paused. “I know your third meal, but I don’t know your last name. How weird is that?”

Mason sat back in his chair and took a sip of wine, appraising her, his mouth pulled up in the crooked smile that she adored. “With that reaction, this is the all-or-nothing round. Get it right, you win. Get it wrong, that’s the arms, feet, hands, everything, and you’re hanged.”

“I’m okay with that, only what’re we playing for?”

“I don’t know. I haven’t thought about that. Something bigger than who does the dishes, that’s for sure.”

Tess agreed with him. “How about winner calls it?”

His gaze dropped to her mouth for two solid seconds before returning to her eyes. “Yes, definitely.”

*****

Review:

My Forever Home is a wonderfully cozy and heartwarming read.  It is just made to tug at you, through both animal and people.  You totally understand why Mason keeps who he is from Tessa and the revelation works well with their relationship as it has developed.  And while there is the opportunity, I really appreciate that Burns avoids  melodrama and handles issues quickly and realistically.

While I feel that Mason had good development as a character, I do wish we’d gotten a little more of Tessa’s family.  Her issues with her family is what sent her on a tour of Europe, but while it is hit upon I think that it could have used a little more.  I do love her relationship with her grandmother – their closeness is so sweet and I loved the support there.

As much as I love Mason and Tessa’s relationship, it is the connection with John Ronald that is really the highlight of the book.  The look inside his mind brings happiness, sadness, and humor.  Some may not like the personification of a dog, but it works for me.

Like Sit, Stay, LoveMy Forever Home is one of those easy to read, slow burn books that takes it time creating connection between the characters – exploring them as people and how they relate to each other.  Mason & Tessa manage to find each other at a time when both are ready for the next phase and it creates a delightfully satisfying HEA.  I’m so looking forward to what Burns has in store for us next.

*****

Author Info:

Debbie Burns’ writing commendations include a Starred Review from Publishers Weekly and a Top Pick from RT Book Reviews for A New Leash on Love, as well as first-place awards for short stories, flash fiction, and longer selections. Her hobbies include hiking, gardening, and daydreaming, which, of course, always leads to new story ideas. She lives in St. Louis with her family, two phenomenal rescue dogs, and a somewhat tetchy Maine coon cat who everyone loves anyway.

*****

Giveaway:

5 Copies of Sit, Stay, Love

https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/54ca7af7708/

*****

Book Review – My Bad

Tags

, , ,

Something a little different for me, but I’m really happy I gave it a chance!

*****

My Bad

Bear Bottom MC series, Book 4

by Lani Lynn Vale

Blurb:

Hoax knows two things very well.

One, he’s not relationship material. Two, the nurse that treats him for erectile dysfunction is the most beautiful thing he’s ever seen, and practically has ‘the marrying type’ stamped on her forehead.

Does that stop him from wanting her? No.

Unfortunately, he learned a long time ago that Army Delta Force and long-lasting relationships don’t go hand in hand.

But beautiful hazel eyes, curly blonde hair, and the prettiest lips he’s ever seen play havoc with his resolve, making him forget his earlier convictions.

All it takes is one teeny, tiny kiss for every shred of control he has to disappear, along with the problem in his pants.

Soon he finds himself doing things that he knows that he shouldn’t. He doesn’t know that he’s found the woman that’s meant to be his. Nor does he realize that her father is the man he’s idolized from the moment he joined the army at the age of eighteen. Because, maybe if he had, he would’ve tried a little harder to ignore the pull he felt between them instead of making her his the night before he deployed for six months.

He also might’ve tried a little harder not to knock her up.

GOODREADS: https://bit.ly/2x2MEKB

AMAZON: https://amzn.to/2CGTfQm

AMAZON AU: https://amzn.to/2KEQmjd

AMAZON UK: https://amzn.to/2RkkB1D

AMAZON CA: https://amzn.to/2P5gO6g

Apple Books: https://apple.co/2P7afQs

B&N: https://bit.ly/2RpURkx

*****

Review:

There is some insta-lust/love so the relationship with these two moves pretty quickly, but Vale does it in a believable way.  They are funny and steamy and fun, and I enjoyed them as a couple. Pru is mouthy and sassy – the perfect foil for an overbearing, alpha man.  Thanks to her upbringing she can stand up for herself but she also has an appreciation for his “type”.  And Hoax is pretty much what you’d expect for a special forces military man who spends his free time as part of a MC.  Along with being dominant and overprotective, he’s also caring, sharp, and sexy.

I really liked the interactions they had with their friends and family, both independently and as a couple.  There is a feeling of belonging that isn’t impacted by blood and these people are there for each other no matter what.  Not having read any of the other books I didn’t have a point of reference for any of them, but it didn’t really seem to matter.  Everything worked really smoothly as a standalone and I felt like I got to know the characters well.

While it was a minor part of the story, I was a little disappointed in the ending.  There is this suspenseful moment that just didn’t make a lot of sense to me.  I’m not sure I understood why things happened they way they did (or at all for that matter) but since the characters and their relationship is the main part of the story, and is well done, I don’t think that it really mattered.  I’m hoping to get my hands on the next story to see if this is the style for this writer or just a thing here.  Or an issue with me 🙂

I’m not usually into the whole bad boy MC thing but the description for this one was intriguing enough that I gave it a chance.  Still not my favorite genre but I will say that Vale is really good at what she does and I’m definitely willing to give her stories another go.  (This is another book, though, where the blurb doesn’t quite match up to the story.  The whole thing with her dad was pretty much a non-issue, as was Hoax’s “treatment”.)  You do have to be OK with things being a little more down-to-earth and kinda … well, coarse.  The guys lead a rough & tumble life and the story is very much same.  It definitely works with the characters – these are not buttoned up and polished people.  And being real is definitely not a bad thing.

*****

Author Info:

Lani Lynn Vale is a USA Today Bestselling Author of over thirty titles. She is married with three children, two dogs, two cats, a donkey, and a couple (a couple also meaning over twenty) chickens.

When she’s not writing, you can find her curled up in her favorite chair reading.

Lani is married with three children and lives in the Great State of Texas.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | BookBub

*****

Spotlight – An Alpha for Christmas

Tags

,

Who’s looking for a little something to spice up their holiday season?

*****

An Alpha for Christmas

by Charity Parkerson

Length: 12,000 words approx.

Blurb:

Christmas Eve night with a sexy new friend turns into the perfect Christmas. But Austin never expects his dream holiday to ruin his life.

Hoping to avoid another yearly gathering of the worst people Austin knows—his family—he volunteers to play Santa’s little helper at the department store where he works. That’s where the sexiest Santa on the planet comes to his rescue.

Will plays Santa every year at his grandfather’s department store. It’s something he oddly enjoys. This year is twice the fun when he’s paired with a mouthwatering elf. When Will finds Austin stranded in the parking lot, he’s more than willing to help. A ride turns into an amazing night together. The night turns into a weekend that changes both their lives forever. Not necessarily for the good.

It’ll take more than a good time in bed to fix Austin’s life. For the first time, Will might have to put someone else first.

This is a short and steamy story, featuring a character from Charity Parkerson’s Low Blow series. It was written to be a complete standalone, separate from the series.

Amazon US | Amazon UK

*****

Author Info:

Charity Parkerson is an award winning and multi-published author with several companies. Born with no filter from her brain to her mouth, she decided to take this odd quirk and insert it in her characters.

*Eight-time Readers’ Favorite Award Winner
*2015 Passionate Plume Award Finalist
*2013 Reviewers’ Choice Award Winner
*2012 ARRA Finalist for Favorite Paranormal Romance
*Five-time winner of The Mistress of the Darkpath

Connect with her online:

–Website: charityparkerson.com
–Facebook: facebook.com/authorCharityParkerson
facebook.com/TheMenofSin
–Twitter: twitter.com/CharityParkerso

*****

Giveaway:

$5.00 USD Paypal cash

https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/47d10e9472/

*****

 

Book Review – The Rancher Takes a Family

Tags

, , ,

The Rancher Takes a Family

The Montana McGregor Brothers series

by Paula Altenburg

Rugged rancher Jake McGregor wrangles cattle better than kids, but when he’s suddenly saddled with three grieving children, he’s determined to step up. His sister’s kids shouldn’t pay for her error in judgment in naming him guardian. Problem is, he doesn’t have a clue what he’s doing. And the woman who attempts to help with his every fumble is the one woman he wants to steer clear of…

Lacey Anderson loves a challenge, but Jake’s already broken her heart once. When his tall shadow darkens the doorway of her classroom, she’s ready to shut him out – until she meets her new students, and sees the desperation in Jake’s eyes. Emotional intelligence is so not his forte. But she’s done banging her head against that wall.

Jake, however, is finally ready to learn how to love and Lacey’s the teacher he wants. Is she willing to risk her own heart again to teach him?

Altenburg delivers a sweet second chance romance about an unprepared guy who steps up to take care of his orphaned niece and nephews.  And it is absolutely adorable how these big strong guys are responsible for the oh-so-cute kids.  They each have a connection with a different kid and it wonderfully sets up future stories.  Even better it’s done with just the lightest amount of drama – all three guys are opinionated, but they handle any disagreements pretty well.

There’s also only a little drama on the romance side of things.  Jake and Lacey had a high school relationship but thanks to some miscommunication and assumptions it ended with hurt feelings.  Now, years later, they are thrown back together again thru the kids.  And I am so happy that Altenburg made it so the relationship was about the couple and not some desperate need for a surrogate mom.  Instead Jake is just taking advantage of the situation to reconnect with Lacey and give a relationship as adults a chance.

The relationship portion flows pretty easily and the story is as much about the new family dynamic.  You’ll totally go “awww” over these kids and how the men work to make the adjustment to their new situation as easy as possible.  They do the best they can to help the kids, as they all are having to get used to their loss and the new normal of their lives.  I’m very much looking forward to the next brother’s story so I can spend time with this group again.