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Saturday, April 4, 2015

Weekly Winners

Below is a list of all of the winners from last week.

The Earl's Defiant Wallflower by Erica Ridley

Chase Me by Tessa Bailey

Manwhore by Katy Evans

Nova Series by Jessica Sorensen

RFTC Monthly Giveaway

All winners have been notified via email. Thank you to everyone that stopped by and entered. =)

ARC Review: What the Lightning Sees: Part One by Louise Bay

What the Lightning Sees Part One by Louise Bay was fantastic! I loved this first installment to her new novella series, and I honestly can't wait for more! Since this is the first part of three in the series, there is a cliffhanger. The ending left me wanting more, and I cannot wait for Part 2. I am so glad that I read this installment, even knowing that I have to wait for more, as I absolutely loved Jake and Haven together! 

When Haven lands a huge story at her work, she knows that it is exactly what she needs in order to help her secure the promotion that she is after. She knows that she isn't well liked at the office, but she is determined to do her job as professionally as possible in order to achieve her goals. But when the new replacement photographer on the story shows up and it is another friend of her boss, she immediately suspects the worst. His friends are always rich and spoiled, and she hates that they have such a sense of entitlement. Things get off on the wrong foot between them, but knowing that they have to work together they form a sort of truce. The more time they spend together though, the more Haven begins to realize that she might have been wrong about Jake and the chemistry between them begins to grow. Soon they are both beginning to see each other in a new light and are wanting to explore the connection between them. 

I will admit that I didn't like Haven at all at the beginning of this story. She came off extremely bitchy, and she was so judgmental. But soon we get to see more of her, and there was so much more than just her first impression. I loved seeing her with her best friend and brother, as it gave us a completely new side to her! She wasn't just the uptight and buttoned-up professional, but she was also able to let her hair down and have some fun. I was really glad that Jake got to see it as well, and I liked how he went about flirting with her. Jake wasn't like what Haven had first thought at all, and although he was rich, he had worked for everything he had. He was smart and successful, and I loved that he was determined to continue working though he didn't need to. He was a smart businessman, but he was also a great photographer that was really modest about his work. The chemistry he had with Haven was off the charts, and I loved that he was into her even when she was prickly. He knew just how to get her to shut up when needed, and I liked that he was able to see beneath her facade. He saw so much more in her than most people did at first glance, and I enjoyed seeing these two get to know one another.

Overall, this was a great first installment. The ending left me not only wanting more, but needing to know what would happen next! I loved Jake and Haven together, and I thought that they were perfect for one another. I loved the banter between them, and that combined with the sexual tension was enough to create the perfect build up to their inevitable explosion. There was so much going on between them, and I couldn't wait to see what would happen! I have to say that I am also really intrigued with Haven's brother Luke and her best friend Ash. They are so interesting to me, and I love what I am seeing between those two as well. I really hope that they continue to be such a big part of this story, because I love their relationships with Haven as well as the back and forth they have going on between them. Can't wait to see what happens next for all these characters, and part two cannot get here soon enough! I highly recommend this story, and I think that readers will really enjoy this story as much as I did.

**ARC Provided by AToMR Tours**

Purchase: | Amazon | B&N | 

RFTC Hall Pass Event with Lauren Blakely

Lauren Blakely writes sexy contemporary romance novels with heat, heart, and humor, and her books have appeared multiple times on the New York Times, USA Today, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iBooks bestseller lists.

Like the heroine in her novel, FAR TOO TEMPTING, she thinks life should be filled with family, laughter, and the kind of love that love songs promise. Lauren lives in California with her husband, children, and dogs. She loves hearing from readers!

Her bestselling series include Caught Up in Love, Seductive Nights, and Fighting Fire. She recently released Nights With Him, a standalone novel in her New York Times Bestselling Seductive Nights series that became an instant New York Times Bestseller. Her next book in that series is Forbidden Nights, releasing in early 2015.

She also writes for young adults under the name Daisy Whitney.

Friday, April 3, 2015

ARC Review: Free Me by Laurelin Paige

You read 100 books just so you can get to one like this.

Let me start by saying that I was biased by my own potential bias. I was afraid going into this book that I was going to give Laurelin more credit than she deserved because I am a “Fixed” series fan (have you read the “Fixed” series? If not, please step away from this review, do so and then come back). It’s happened before, sometimes we love an author so much that everything they write gets filtered through that positive feeling and we lose objectivity. I tell you that so you know that the fact that I love this book should be given real credence because it started at a disadvantage in my mind because I was trying so hard not to be biased. If you can make sense out of any of what I just said, bless your heart. Moving on.

“Free Me” is Gwen and J.C.’s story. Gwen and JC are both emotionally unavailable people but they have very different coping mechanisms. Gwen has shut off the sex valve, JC can’t locate the shut off button. That’s the condition they are in when they meet and bam you have a story. The book is told entirely from Gwen’s POV. If you’ve read any of my reviews, you know I prefer books written in dual POV. However, it was not an issue for me in this book. This book was written so well that even utilizing just one POV, I got everything I needed from the story.

Some books you feel like an observer but this book, you feel like a participant, the story draws you in and makes you forget that you’re a third party. I don’t want to give anything away about the book but I will tell you that you can feel the connection between Gwen and JC and you can also feel both of their angst and hesitation. Every insecurity, hope and disappointment is described in HD detail. We don’t get a lot of the back story on JC but somehow it still works. I didn’t walk away from this book feeling like I didn’t know anything about him, I understood his story well enough.

Gwen is kind of an ice queen in the “Fixed” series but it really works in “Free Me.” At the same time, the journey to her slowly opening up doesn’t feel contrived or rushed for the sake of the story line. I’m surprised but I honestly walked away from this book empathizing with and liking Gwen.

I was trying to figure out what elevates this book above other books in the genre and I got it: It’s the language of this book that moves it beyond the realm of a good book to a truly great book that you will remember. At one point, feelings in this book are described as colors with such eloquence that I could SEE what the author was describing. I could see the emotions. Now that’s some stellar writing!

My one relatively minor criticism of this book is about the sex scenes. The scenes were good but they had a clinical tint that was a total buzz kill. During the early sex scenes, J.C. was asking Gwen questions like he was studying her. Awk-ward. Eventually that stopped but it was distracting at best and icky (that’s a word) at worst. This criticism is minor and doesn’t detract from my five star rating. This book is a MUST READ and I am really looking forward to Part 2.

**ARC provided by InkSlinger PR**

Purchase: | Amazon | B&N | iTunes |

ARC Review: Perfect Game by Collette West

Perfect Game is the newest New York Kings book by Collette West. Each one of these books can be read as a standalone, but I would recommend reading these in order if you can as the characters are interconnected and some things will be spoiled by reading them out of order. I was really looking forward to Scott and Carrie's story, and though I was frustrated with these two at times I really ended up enjoying their story. 

Scott Harper is the first baseman for the New York Kings. He is known for being a player both on and off the field. When his phone is hacked and nude pictures of him and several different girls are released to the public, it just makes his reputation worse. Carrie McKenzie has always been known as the fat chick, but after slimming down and winning the job as the clubhouse reporter for the Kings, she scores the sole interview with Scott where he will discuss the nude selfies. Carrie and Scott have been flirting for awhile, but it wasn't until they spent a passionate night together while at spring training that things began to really heat up for these two. Scott isn't used to wanting more than one night with any girl and Carrie doesn't date baseball players, but they soon find themselves with feelings that they didn't plan on and in a very complicated situation. But Carrie also has a secret that could change everything that her and Scott are just starting to build. 

I really liked Scott and Carrie, but I have to admit at the beginning of this book I really feared I was going to hate them both. They had a lot of chemistry and attraction right off, but they were also very frustrating. Both of them would flip flop constantly on what they wanted, and I got very sick of the back and forth. Luckily, they started to see that there was something special between them and things started to shape up. I liked that Scott was so much more than what you first saw. He was known for being a player and extremely cocky, but underneath he was also really sweet and caring. His feelings for Carrie were genuine, and I liked that he didn't give up on her. Carrie was a little harder for me to like if i'm honest. She was slower to warm up to Scott and I felt like she made a few bad decisions along the way. She knew she wanted him and was attracted to him, but she also let some things happen that I wasn't really a fan of, especially when it came to one of Scott's teammates. But I really liked Scott and Carrie together, and I liked seeing them figure things out. It was sort of them against the world, and they really had so many obstacles that they had to face. I was glad that they had each other to lean on. 

Overall, this was my favorite book in the series so far. I really liked Scott, and I think part of that is seeing the bad boy player fall hard for his girl. I just loved Scott and thought that despite everything that he had been through that he really just needed to meet the right girl that would change his life. He deserved to be happy, and I thought that Carrie was a great match for him. These two challenged each other and might not have made the most sense on paper, but they were proof to me that opposites can attract. They connected in a way that neither of them had ever done with anyone else before, and I liked seeing how things played out for them. I think that this book was a great addition to the series, but it is also a really great standalone. I would recommend this to contemporary romance fans looking for an entertaining and well written story. If you are a sports romance fan, you will definitely want to check this one out!

**ARC Provided by IndieSage PR**

Purchase: | Amazon | Kindle | B&N | Book Depository | iTunes | 

RFTC Hall Pass Event with AJ Pine

AJ Pine writes stories to break readers’ hearts, but don’t worry—she’ll mend them with a happily ever after. As an English teacher and a librarian, AJ has always surrounded herself with books. All her favorites have one big commonality–romance. Naturally, her books have the same. When she’s not writing, she’s of course reading. Then there’s online shopping (everything from groceries to shoes) and, of course, a tiny bit of TV where she nourishes her undying love of vampires, from Eric Northman to the Salvatore brothers. And in the midst of all of this, you’ll also find her hanging with her family in the Chicago burbs.

AJ’s first series with Entangled Embrace, IF ONLY and companion novel, WHAT IF, are out now. Her new NA series, ONE NIGHT (April 2015) and ONE LIFE (October 2015), releases with Penguin/Intermix this year!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Review: Seduced By The Senator by Alex Elliott

Seduced By The Senator is the first book in the Dirty Little Secrets Series by Alex Elliott. I will admit that I was drawn in by the cover and blurb, but I had no idea what to expect since I hadn't ever read anything by this author before. I could not put this book down! I was instantly drawn into the story, and I had to know what would happen next for Xavia and Bennett. Not to mention this book was super hot! I am very excited to see where this series goes from here! 

Xavia Kennedy is tired of doing things the way her family wants. Being a Kennedy, her life is planned out by her family and she is ready to escape. She has a plan, and she intends to see it through. One night while out with friends she meets a sexy stranger and proceeds to have a sexy hook-up in a bar hallway. He calls it a mistake, and she walked away. Though they didn't speak again after that night, they both can't get it out of their heads. When Xavia's best friend offers her the break she needs, she heads to D.C. as the newest intern for Senator Bennett Stone. Bennett Stone never expects his new intern to be the girl he can't get out of his mind, and though he knows it goes against everything he should do he finds himself unable to fight his attraction to her. But Xavia and Bennett both have secrets that would be disastrous if put into the wrong hands. Bennett needs Xavia to agree to his terms in order to protect them both, but will X agree or continue to argue with him every step of the way? 

Bennett Stone is sexy and alpha, and I loved him right away. He is so comfortable with himself, he knows what he wants and what he needs. I loved how put together and successful he is on the outside, and how that control translates when it comes to his desires. He is one of the sexiest Doms I have ever read about, and it was so clear to me why X would be so drawn to him. I liked that he was always in control, except when it came to X. He found himself breaking rules constantly with her, and I loved seeing him unable to fight the pull he felt to her. X was strong and smart, and I loved how feisty she was. She might be a Kennedy, but she was determined to be her own person. She gave Bennett a run for his money when it came to control, but she also was able to submit to him as well. These two really challenged each other, and I loved every minute of it. Their attraction and chemistry was instant, and it is shocking that my Kindle didn't overheat with these two. But I actually loved how they could verbally spar and the witty banter between them. 

Overall, this was a great first installment and I can't wait for more! I absolutely loved how things progressed between these two. The pacing was fantastic, and I really liked Alex Elliott's writing style. This book sucked me right in and I couldn't stop reading until I had devoured every single word. I am anxious for more of these two and can't wait to see where they go from here. If you are looking for a captivating story that has a ton of steam, you are going to want to check this book out! I love these two together, and I think that readers will love them just as much as I do.

**Review Copy Provided by Flirty Subs PR**

Purchase: | Amazon | Kindle | B&N | Book Depository

Review: Tyler's Undoing by L.P. Dover

I have really been loving the Gloves Off series by L.P. Dover, so I was really excited when I got the chance to read another book from the series. While each of these books can be read as standalones, they do contain interconnected characters. I have read these completely out of order, and it has never been a problem. That being said, you do get so much more to the experience when you know the entire back story for each of the characters in my opinion. While it isn't necessary, I would definitely recommend reading these in order if you can. I have really enjoyed each book I have read, but I think Tyler's Undoing just might be my favorite. I really liked Tyler and Kacey and I couldn't get enough of these two together. 

Tyler Rushing is used to women falling at his feet and he is on his way to winning the title and becoming even more famous as one of the UFC's sexiest fighters. When his secret fling with Gabriella Reynolds comes to a mutual end, he has no idea his life is about to change forever. When Tyler meets Kacey he is instantly drawn to her and despite her resistance, he is determined to win her over. But Kacey has spent the last few years caring for her sick grandmother since the rest of her family couldn't be bothered, as well as trying to get away from her brother Kyle Andrews. Kyle is well known and hated in the MMA world, and Kacey doesn't want anyone associating her with Kyle and his actions. Though Kacey tries to stay from Tyler, she finds out that he is different than the rest of the fighters she has met. But Kacey also knows that as close as her and Tyler are growing, that when he finds out who she is he might very well want nothing to do with her. 

I loved Tyler. He was used to going through women, and never thought twice about a future with anyone including Gabriella. But he was so different after meeting Kacey. You could tell that he really liked Kacey right away, and I was so glad that he didn't give up on her. She was really cold to him and he just kept trying, and I really admired that about him. He was successful and smart, and so much more than just a fighter. I liked that he was protective and alpha, but he was also so caring and kind with Kacey. He was there for her when she needed him the most, and I loved seeing that side of him. Kacey was understandably very secretive about her family, and I knew exactly why she didn't want it getting out who she really was. But I do think that she waited far too long to let Tyler know what the truth was. There were a few times that it would have been so easy to tell him, and a few times that other things got in the way. I just wanted her to be honest with him, since their feelings had grown so much. I had faith that though Tyler wouldn't like it, that he would see the truth and I hated the way things were finally revealed. I didn't like Tyler's reaction, but I do think he was right to be mad about finding out how he did. It should have come from Kacey, and that was something that was hard for me to get over. These two had such chemistry and a strong connection though. Besides that one criticism, I really loved everything about these two. 

Overall, I thought that this book was probably my favorite so far in this series. Having read these out of order, it was really interesting for me to see some of the other characters I have read about and what happened to them before they wound up with their guy/girl. It was interesting to me to see how all these characters relate to one another, and I loved getting more of their friendships. I will say that I absolutely hated Kyle through a lot of this book, and when things came to a head at the end I seriously wanted him to get what was coming to him. But then I saw a different side to him after everything played out, and it felt as though maybe there was something good still somewhere in him. I really hope that he can turn things around and make amends for all the horrible things he has done. If Camden could find redemption, I have faith that L.P. Dover will get Kyle there as well. This series is so good, and I honestly can't wait to read the rest of the books that I haven't read yet. With each book, I find myself falling in love with all these characters all over again. This is one series that I would definitely recommend to anyone looking for good stories with some sexy fighters. Each story is well written, entertaining, and filled with unique characters. I look forward to reading more from L.P. Dover in the future.

**Review Copy Provided by Enticing Journey Book Promotions**

Purchase: | Amazon | Kindle | B&N | Book Depository | iTunes | 

RFTC Hall Pass Event with Roni Loren

Roni wrote her first romance novel at age fifteen when she discovered writing about boys was way easier than actually talking to them. Since then, her flirting skills haven’t improved, but she likes to think her storytelling ability has. She is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of The Loving on the Edge series.

Site Blog | Facebook Twitter Tumblr |

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

ARC Review: The Millionaires Unexpected Proposal by Jane Peden

Deja vu again....

I feel like I've read this book before. Because I have, several times. Camilla gets pregnant after a one night stand with Sam. Sam misses out on four years of the kid's life but is forced to marry Camilla to protect said child. And they fall in love. And just when things are going great, there is a misunderstanding. And then it's over. And they live HEA. Sound familiar?

Here's the thing, I don't deride books for following a formula. It's the formula that we look for and want from these books. What separates books that follow a formula from the ones that are formulaic is how the author re-works the details of the story to give us something fresh. The problem with this book is that nothing is re-worked. There is no real nuance to the plot. The conflicts are shallow, not well explained and too quickly resolved.

There are several things that just left me feeling like 'um WHAT??' For example, I still don't understand why Camilla didn't try harder to tell Sam about his child or why Sam accepted her lack of explanation. Also, the conflict that brings Sam and Camilla together is so easily and quickly resolved that it was just...stupid. And another thing, why the hell didn't anybody besides Sam, Olivia and Camilla note the resemblance between Sam and JD? Is this like Family Guy episodes where only Brian can understand Stewie when he talks? I'm reaching but I'm trying to find SOME explanation here.

Random questions that I couldn't logically fit anywhere in this review: Why didn't Camilla have a job? Did she ever work? How old was she? What did she do after she graduated from High School? Did she graduate?

Camilla gave in to Sam way too easily. In related news, Sam kept having the same ridiculous internal monologue over whether he could trust Camilla. Maybe it wasn't ridiculous the first time but by the 8th time, I read it, I was giving myself a headache from how deeply I was rolling my eyes.

The sex scenes were vague and boring and also formulaic. The supporting characters were pretty good and the book had a good pace. But the author missed every opportunity to add something to a formula which I actually like. If this is your first book written with this story line, perhaps you won't find it as uninspiring as I did but it's not on my recommended reading list.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

Purchase: | Amazon | B&N | iTunes |

ARC Review: Ricochet: Locked & Loaded by Heather C. Leigh

Locked & Loaded is the first installment in the Ricochet Serial by Heather C. Leigh. This is a full novel that will be released as three parts, so keep in mind that there will be cliffhangers. Luckily, Heather C. Leigh is releasing these very close together, so the wait for each installment isn't a long one. I thought that this was a great start to the series, and I am excited to read more about Rick and Quinn. 

After finally escaping from her abusive husband, Quinn Wallace turns to her father's Marine buddy Mack. He offers her a job working for his gym, Sanctum MMA, where his hand-picked team trains elite fighters. Each trainer has special skills that allows Mack to run a special secret organization. Though Quinn hates all things violent after living with abuse for so long, she finds herself drawn to Rick "Ricochet" Brennan. But Rick is more than just a fighter, and soon they begin spending time together. As Quinn gets to know Rick, she finds herself wondering if she can leave her past behind and learn to trust again. 

I liked Quinn and Rick. Rick is used to sleeping around, and gets his nickname from the fact that he is not in one bed for long before hopping to the next. He was more than his reputation though, and I liked seeing him be so kind and patient with Quinn. He knew by her actions that she had some issues, and I liked that he was so respectful to her while at the same time unable to stay away. He felt drawn to her, and he knew that she was different. It was good to see his feelings start to develop from just attraction to more as this installment progressed. Quinn had trust issues and wasn't a fan of violence due to all that she had been through. I loved that she was strong though and that she had removed herself from the situation and was strong enough to ask for help when she needed it. She might not have been comfortable around fighting, but I was glad that it didn't keep her away from Rick and the gym. These two had chemistry right off, and it was interesting to see them start to have feelings for one another. 

I will say that this story moved pretty quickly, and I wish that things had slowed down a bit. It felt kind of rushed to me, and I would have loved to see these two get to know one another a bit better. I also would have liked to have seen a little more of their back-stories as well, and I am hoping that we get to know each of them a little better as this serial continues. Other than that and the cliffhanger ending though, I really enjoyed this story. I am looking forward to the next part, Ricochet: Friendly Fire, and I can't wait to find out what happens next for these characters. This cliffhanger was a pretty big one, and I have to say that I am anxious because of where we left off. I think that this is a really good start to this serial though, and I would recommend it to those that are able to handle some slightly uncomfortable and violent scenes.

**ARC Provided by TRSOR Promotions**

Purchase: | Amazon

RFTC Hall Pass Event with Monica Murphy

New York Times, USA Today and international bestselling author Monica Murphy is a native Californian who lives in the foothills below Yosemite with her husband and three children. She's a workaholic who loves her job. When she's not busy writing, she also loves to read and travel with her family. She writes new adult and contemporary romance and is published with Bantam and Avon. She also writes contemporary romance as USA Today bestselling author Karen Erickson.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

ARC Review: Stay for Me by Megan Smith

Stay for Me is a spin-off to the Love series by Megan Smith. You can easily read this book as a standalone, but I would recommend reading Let Me Love You since Jaylinn and Cooper play such a large part in this book. It isn't necessary to understand the story, but they happen at the same time and I think that you get a much better understanding of what is going on in both stories if you read them both. That being said, I am having a really hard time writing this review. I think that there are a lot of readers that are going to feel exactly as I do right now about this book, and that isn't necessarily a good thing.

Eli Sabatino has just opened up a a new club with his best friend Cooper. He hires Layla Del Luca as a bartender, but he never expected to feel the pull to her that he did. Layla has been trying to go to school, make money to support herself and her family, as well as avoid her abusive boyfriend Brian. As Eli and Layla get to know one another better they can't help but begin to feel more for each other than they know they should. Eli is determined to explore things between them, knowing that her boyfriend doesn't deserve her. But Layla has her reasons for sticking with Brian. Can Eli and Layla find a way for her to leave her past behind and move forward together, or will there be too many things standing in their way? 

I really liked Eli. I thought that he was really sweet and was a good guy. He was great with his niece and with Layla's sister Fallon. He genuinely cared about his friends and family and those that worked for him. He was always looking out for them and doing what he could to help them. I thought that he was really good for Layla. He showed her that it was okay to ask for help and to let someone in. I was glad that he didn't turn her away when she was finally able to see that she needed someone. Layla was struggling to do so many things at once, and her loyalty and love to her sister were amazing. She was determined that Fallon would have a better life than she had had, and I really liked that she tried to let Fallon not see how hard things were. She worked hard and did what she had to do. She had been so used to going it alone, that it was easy to see why it would be hard for her to let others in. I really liked seeing her open up to Eli though, and I loved that they were able to have fun together. They had their sweet moments, but they were also really hot together too. I was glad that their relationship developed slowly though, and that they didn't rush into bed together. 

I will say that I felt like while things progressed rather slowly over the first half of the book, that things seemed to rapidly pick up after about the half way mark. Things started to happen too quickly to me, and it felt pretty rushed. I kept wondering why things had changed pace so suddenly and then the ending happened and I saw what the author had been trying to do. I say trying, because it honestly didn't feel as though she had accomplished what she was meaning to. It felt rushed and unrealistic, and then the ending happened and changed everything. While I really liked this book for about the first 90% I have to say that the ending really killed that for me, which is why I am rating this book 3 stars. My rating would have been 4 stars, except for that ending. The ending made me want to give this book 2 stars, but I really felt that wasn't fair considering I had enjoyed the majority of this book. So I give it 3 stars, and call the fact that I didn't pull a Bradley Cooper in Silver Linings Playbook and chuck my Kindle out the window a huge success. I have no idea why the author felt the need to go where she did, and I didn't see any point in it. I have to admit that I am a bit skeptical about reading anything else from this author in the future after reading this book. I think that there are those that will read and enjoy this book, but for me this wasn't what I had been expecting or hoping for. I don't always need things to be completely wrapped up in a nice package, but I do expect things to have a satisfying ending and I just don't feel as though this ending achieved that.

**ARC Provided by Book Plug Promotions**

Purchase: | Amazon | Kindle | B&N | iTunes |