Saturday, June 3, 2017

ARC Review: Only With Me by Kelly Elliott

Only With Me is the second book in Kelly Elliott's With Me series, but each book is a standalone story. After reading and loving Stay With Me though, I couldn't wait to get more in this world. Only With Me was such a great story, and Kelly Elliott continues to prove why she is a go-to author when it comes to contemporary romance for me. 

Nic was content living life as a bachelor and a SWAT officer, his dream job, until he walked into Gabi's bakery. Everything changed for him when he met her, but then his very traditional and Greek family got involved. With Gabi being Italian, his family was determined to prove that they didn't belong together. As if their differences in heritage weren't enough, Gabi has a past that has kept her running for the last several years. Can Nic keep her safe and show her that they have a future together, or are there too many obstacles for them to overcome? 

I really liked these two. This was definitely a case of insta-love, and yet it really worked in this case. I felt like these two belonged together and that they just fit. Nic and Gabi were super hot together, and the chemistry was what had me hooked from the very first page. But they were so much more than that, and I really enjoyed seeing them get to know one another and watching as their connection continued to strengthen as they got to know one another. 

Overall, this book was so cute and fun. It was a great light read, with a little bit of suspense thrown in that kept things interesting. Once I started, I didn't want to put it down. I have really enjoyed everything that I have read from Kelly Elliott, and she is definitely an author that I recommend checking out if you have never read any of her books. Only With Me is definitely worth the read, and I think fans new and old will really enjoy this one.

**ARC Provided by Inkslinger PR**

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

Feature and Giveaway: Toughest Cowboy in Texas by Carolyn Brown

Last time Lila Harris was in Happy, Texas, she was actively earning her reputation as the resident wild child. Now, a little older and wiser, she's back to run her mother's café for the summer. Except something about this town has her itching to get a little reckless and rowdy, especially when she sees her old partner-in-crime, Brody Dawson. Their chemistry is just as hot as ever. But he's still the town's golden boy-and she's still the wrong kind of girl.

Brody hasn't had much time lately for anything other than ranching. Running the biggest spread in the county and taking care of his family more than keeps him busy. All that responsibility has him longing for the carefree days of high school—and Lila. She may have grown up, but he still sees that spark of mischief in her eyes. Now he's dreaming about late-night skinny dipping and wondering how he can possibly resist the one woman he can never forget...

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Friday, June 2, 2017

ARC Review: One Taste of Angel by Violetta Rand

I'm not really sure what the appropriate numerical rating for this book is. I have very mixed feelings about what is a very mixed bag of a plot. As you may know, I'm an MC romance fan so this book certainly started off on the right foot with me. I'm just not sure if we were able to maintain a positive relationship as the story went on. I found myself less than excited about some of the plot twist and the choices the characters were making just left me alternating between scratching and shaking my head. So I don't know what to tell you about the stars but read this review and read the book in light of what I've told you.

So Angel is a stripper/virgin who is hiding a really big effing secret. She gets hired for a party in her former hometown. Things get out of hand and she is rescued by Eagle. Eagle happens to be the love of Angel's life who she escaped years ago to protect him (more on that later). Angel faked her own death and had some pretty major reconstructive surgery so that no one would recognize. Her face rearranging was apparently quite effective because Eagle doesn't recognize Angel as is his one true love. But what the eyes don't see, the heart recognizes (or so it would seem) because Eagle is instantly attracted to his long lost love.

Eagle is a bad ass biker. He checks all my man boxes- sexy, bossy, dirty mouth and a bit on the violent side. Check, check, check and wrap it up, I'll take it. Eagle focuses on Angel (who is going by Seraphina while she has the new face) and sees her as his opportunity to finally let go of the past and step into the present. And look, blah blah blah, so on and so forth. To quickly summarize the rest of the book, Eagle figures out who Angel is in a stupid way. Everyone accepts Angel's reasons for disappearing even though her disappearance sent the MC into a war where brothers died because of Angel's failure to communicate. The feud that is brewing between the clubs in the book never really materializes into the kind of drama that it is built up to be. Angel and Eagle have some hot steamy sex but there relationship is basically developed in a book that we're not reading so we're a little left out of the intensity of it.

Like I said I don't really know what an appropriate rating for this book is. It's definitely not bad but some of the puzzle pieces just didn't fit together well. If you're an MC romance fan, give this one a try but temper your expectations.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

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Guest Post with Author Denise Grover Swank and Giveaway

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Denise Grover Swank was born in Kansas City, Missouri and lived in the area until she was nineteen. Then she became a nomadic gypsy, living in five cities, four states and ten houses over the course of ten years before she moved back to her roots. She speaks English and smattering of Spanish and Chinese, which she learned through an intensive Nick Jr. immersion period. Her hobbies include witty (in her own mind) Facebook comments and dancing in her kitchen with her children. (Quite badly if you believe her offspring.) Hidden talents include the gift of justification and the ability to drink massive amounts of caffeine and still fall asleep within two minutes. Her lack of the sense of smell allows her to perform many unspeakable tasks. She has six children and hasn't lost her sanity. Or so she leads you to believe.

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Thursday, June 1, 2017

ARC Review: An Affair with a Notorious Heiress by Lorraine Heath

“An Affair with a Notorious Heiress(Scandalous Gentleman of St. James” is classic Lorraine Heath. I love so many of Heath’s books but the books in the last series has not grabbed until this book! The fourth book in the “Scandalous Gentlemen of St. James” series.

First, the book was so,so,so good. It’s been a while since I have started reading a book and look up to see it’s almost 2 am! The chemistry between Alistair Mabry, Marquess of Rexton and Tillie, Lady Landsdowne was so fantastic! Heath gives us two very different characters! Alistair is the son of the notorious Frannie in her previous books and series, “Surrender to the Devil: Scoundrels of St. James.” Frannie was notoriously known because of her lack of blue-blood in the previous books. Her son, Alistair has had to pay the price. After getting beat up many times while he was in school because of his mother’s reputation, Alistair is determined to marry only a woman with impeccable reputation and Tillie has anything but that. Alistair is a quiet and reserved guy who is looking for an equally quiet wife. When he begins to court Gina, Tillie’s sister Alistair has to remind himself who he is really interested in.

Tillie came to London in search of a husband because of her mother’s urging. Her parents had “new money” and in the colonies they were not accepted. Tillie’s mom urges her into London society with the hopes that she will marry a titled man-which she does. But her disastrous marriage quickly ends in a divorce. Tillie is eager to help her sister find a good match so she can return back home. When Alistair shows interest in her, she is not only weary of what his intentions are with Gina but also about her own feelings towards him. Alistair was quick to realize that Tillie’s name was slandered and her ex-husband was not. While Tillie is shunned and an outcast, her husband is readily welcomed back. The more time that Alistair spends with Tillie the more he comes to love her no longer fight their attraction. But Tillie is very much not welcomed into society and Alistair might be able to help her find her way back in however he is not sure if she will even stay in London.

Heath is an automatic read for me but for reasons I can’t understand her latest books haven’t grabbed me, but this book had me up all night. I really loved both Tillie and Alistair and loved their story. I also loved that Gina was a very conning matchmaker and she was an accomplice in helping her sister and Alistair find love. I loved this book and highly recommend it!

**ARC provided by Publisher**

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Feature and Giveaway: Lightstruck by Liz Crowe

Brewer Ross has given up on love…until he meets a woman who turns his life—and brewery—upside down.

Ross Hoffman held the potential for a perfect life in his hands—a life with Evelyn, the only woman he’d ever allowed himself to love, their baby and…her husband, Austin Fitzgerald, who also happened to be his best friend. But the challenge of trying to make a threesome into something acceptable—let alone the thought of actually sharing Evelyn with anyone—forces him to bolt. Determined to put all thoughts of their relationship behind him, Ross jumps headfirst into a new brewery job in Colorado, and back into the sort of sexual decadence that he hopes will distract him from his misery.

When he agrees to assist Austin through a spate of brewery mishaps, he lays eyes on his true fate—in the form of the petite, mysterious and exotic Elisa Nagel. Hired as assistant brewer, Elisa is absolutely everything he believes he doesn’t want in a woman. But he’s drawn to her in ways he can’t explain, and he can’t help but fall hard, fast and deep, which places him square in the middle of her horrific, until now secret backstory.

Ross is determined that his love will conquer and overcome the horrors of Elisa’s past, allowing her to trust him with the only thing he desires—her heart.
Reader Advisory: This book contains a scene with attempted rape and violence, as well as a brief scene alluding to person being drugged and raped.

Purchase: | Amazon |

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

ARC Review: Ruckus by L.J. Shen

Ruckus is the third book in the Sinners of Saint series. I know it says #2 but the first book in the series is technically a novella so I guess the author doesn't count it in the series count. The series tells the stories of four friends from Todos Santos, "the hotholes" (uh yeah, that's the stupidest clique name EVA but they got in high school so we'll give them a pass), and Dean- "Ruckus" is the third friend whose story we get. You could technically read any of the books in this series as standalones but I would not recommend that. Each book contains at least minor spoilers of the book that came before it and this series is so good that you don't want to mess it up by reading it out of order.

So, for all of you Todos Santos fans, you know that Dean is the fun loving, mostly high, often drunk member of the hotholes. Dean was somewhat of a mystery to me in prior books. He was the guy who seemed to have a good heart but he had an A hole switch that he seemed perfectly comfortable switching when the occasion called for it. Dean seems to have the most stable family of all his friends and also seems like he is the most easy going. But, hold off on any assumptions you might have about this one. This book reveals a character that is way more nuanced than what we see in other books. In fact, it takes time for Dean to come into full view in this book. He is a man who is fighting some seriously ugly demons and the book is as much about his struggle to defeat those demons as it is his relationship with Rosie.

And speaking of Rosie, she is another dynamic character for the ages. Rosie is so much more than Emilia's sickly younger sister. The problem is proving that to her family can be a little difficult. Rosie was gutsy, outspoken and independent. Rosie has an illness which gets in the way of her doing all the things she wants to do in life. But Rosie doesn't hide, she embraces even what she doesn't have and lets herself experience joy in others even when it's not her own. Rosie knows that Dean is effed up way beyond what other people see of him and she sacrifices herself for him. Rosie lets Dean take out all of his issues on her body and in exchange she accepts his love and loves him in return.

I was worried about how I would feel about Rosie and Dean since Dean did date Rosie's sister in prior books. The relationship between Rosie and Emilia, however, is not at all what it was cracked up to be and both of them knew it. The really fascinating thing was how Dean and Rosie basically agreed that Dean would be with Emilia to protect Emilia. They sacrificed their own happiness for Emilia's. You can't help but to root for a couple like that.

So you know...Rosie is kind of dying and the end is not at all guaranteed in this book. The author forces the reader to pull a Rosie. Embrace the moments you have and don't worry about what happens in the end. Just enjoy the journey. This book is amazing as is the entire series. This one has more emotional angst than the last one but it's good angst and I think you'll like it.

**ARC provided by Enticing Journey Book Promotions**

Purchase: | Amazon |

Feature: Ruckus by L.J. Shen


They say that life is a beautiful lie and death a painful truth. They're right.
No one has ever made me feel more alive than the guy who serves as a constant reminder that my clock is ticking.
He is my forbidden, shiny apple.
The striking fallacy to my blunt, raw, truth.
He is also my sister's ex-boyfriend.
One thing you should know before you judge me;
I saw him first. I craved him first. I loved him first.
Eleven years later, he waltzed into my life, demanding a second chance.
Dean Cole wants to be my bronze horseman. My white knight has finally arrived. Hopefully, he isn’t too late.


They say the brightest stars burn out the fastest. They’re right.
She sets my mind on fire.
All smart mouth, snarky attitude and a huge heart.
In a world where everything is dull, she shines like fucking Sirius.
Eleven years ago, fate tore us apart.
This time, I fucking dare it to try.
Getting to her is a battlefield, but man, that’s why they call me Ruckus.
Rosie LeBlanc is about to find out how hard I can fight.
And conquering her will be the sweetest victory.

Purchase: | Amazon |

ARC Review: Crave Me by Stacey Lynn

I will admit that I am a huge addict when it comes to forbidden love stories. It doesn't matter what the story is really, if it is at all forbidden the chances are I am going to want to read it. I was really excited to read this one though, and it was everything I was hoping for and more. Crave Me is definitely my favorite of the books I have read from Stacey Lynn, and one I recommend to fans of erotic romance. 

Chloe knows what she wants and is looking for the perfect Dom to help fulfill all of her desires. The man she really wants is her sister's ex-boyfriend, but she knows that he is the perfect man for her and has dreamed of Simon since she met him. While Chloe's sister wanted nothing to do with the BDSM lifestyle, both Simon and Chloe know that it is the life for them. But can they possibly have something lasting when they know that her family will never approve of them being together? 

I really liked these two. They were a perfect match for one another, fulfilling each other's desires and needs without judgment. Simon was commanding and sexy, without being a jerk. He was kind and caring, and really did a great job of introducing Chloe to the lifestyle. Chloe was smart and strong and just feisty enough to make her submission that much sweeter for Simon. She was such a great heroine and I instantly liked her. These two were super sexy together, but it was so much deeper than that and I loved every bit of it. 

Overall, this was a really great story. If you are a fan of BDSM and forbidden romance stories, this is one I recommend giving a shot. It was sexy and sweet, and just a great all around book. Simon and Chloe are easy to like and I was captivated with them the entire way through. I can't wait to read more from Stacey Lynn.

**ARC Provided by Social Butterfly PR**

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Tuesday, May 30, 2017

ARC Review: Found Underneath by K.L. Kreig

Found Underneath is Part 2 in the "Finding Me" series. You cannot read this book if you have not already read the first book and you should not read this review either as it will contain spoilers.

This is the conclusion to the Willow and Shaw story. The story picks up right where the last one left off. There are still unanswered questions about what role Shaw's sister had in the death and other secrets are lurking in this book as well. The issue with Shaw's sister becomes much more prevalent in this book and there are other answers about Willow's sister that emerge as well.

The reason you should really read this book is because of the relationship between Shaw and Willow. I warn you, Willow's emotional issues are front and center. You may sometimes want to smack the hell out of Willow. There are so many things Willow needs to say but they are locked up so tight she never seems to be able to get anything out. Shaw is transforming right before our eyes. Every barrier he put in place is being renegotiated as he discovers that he loves Willow more than he loved his life of whoring, emotional barriers and working like a maniac. Shaw knows that Willow is hiding behind walls and does everything he can to knock the walls down before he finds himself trapped inside of his own impossible walls. Even with all their barriers the love between these two characters intensifies even more in this book until it is consuming everything. That little weasel Reid is still popping up to mess things up but for the most part Willow handles it really well. Willow sees Reid for what he is and she is committed to Shaw and their relationship. The sex between these two characters is smoking hot. The author never skims on the steam or gets lazy with the scenes.

And just so you know, the situation between Willow's Father and Shaw's sister did not go down the way you might think. I wasn't great but in the end the author resolved it in a way that let the characters move forward in a believable way.

I did something with my rating of this book that I've never done before. I changed my rating after I read the author's personal blurb at the end of the book. I was going to give this book 4 stars because Willow's emotional isolation made me crazy. But then I read the author's explanation that she wasn't just building gratuitous drama into the story line but giving us a real character who isn't able to communicate in the perfect way that makes romance stories tidy. As someone who can be a little closed off I had two reactions to the author's blurb: First, oh shit, I hope I'm not as annoying as Willow. Second, I appreciate the effort to mix endless orgasms and super hot sex with some very real emotional dysfunction. Yeah, I like to see my characters get over it a bit quicker but I'm here for the struggle too.

**ARC provided by Give Me Books Promotions**

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ARC Review: The Rebellion by S.L. Scott

The Rebellion is the fifth book in S.L. Scott's Hard to Resist series that centers around a group of sexy rockers that make up the band, The Resistance. This book is a standalone second-chance romance, so readers can read this one even if they haven't read the previous books in the series. With that being said though, I struggled to finish this book. There was a lot to get over here, and unfortunately the only thing that kept me reading was the fact that I have enjoyed books from S.L. Scott in the past. 

I won't go into a ton of details on the story itself so as not to spoil anything. Derrick and Jaymes met at a young age and things quickly became more for them. But then everything changed and Derrick went on to become a famous rockstar while Jaymes was left behind to struggle and fight a life that was more than just about her. 

A huge part of my issues here were the characters. I couldn't connect with them and I really didn't like them. There were some huge assumptions here and some things that just didn't make sense to me about how they acted. While the heroine was left behind and had so much she was struggling with, the hero was out sleeping with tons of groupies. The worst part of all of it is that what happened to the heroine could be traced back to the hero, and yet it was easily forgiven because Derrick didn't know. I just couldn't get past everything that they did and that had happened. It was just too much to overcome. 

Not only were the characters a problem for me, but the story itself was. I just couldn't believe that this came from an author that I had loved so much in the past. With everything that Jaymes had been through and the stuff that she was forced to endure, and then there is this hero that has had his dreams come true and spent his time being a complete manwhore it was just too much for me to look past. I couldn't bring myself to like the characters or truly feel invested in their story and this one was disappointing. I have seen a lot of reviews from people that loved this story, but sadly this is one I would recommend skipping.

**ARC Provided by Author**

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Feature and Giveaway: Highland Hellion by Mary Wine

· Illegitimate daughter of an English earl
· Abducted to Scotland at age 14
· No family, no reputation...
· No rules

· Heir to an honorable Highland laird
· Can’t believe how well tomboy Kate can fight
· About to learn how much of a woman she really is

Scotland is seething with plots, the vengeful Gordons are spoiling for a fight, and the neighboring clans are at each other’s throats. All it takes is a passionate hellion with a penchant for reckless adventure to ignite the Highlands once more.

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

Monday, May 29, 2017

ARC Review: Wrecked by Cynthia Eden

Wrecked is another installment in the romance/suspense LOST series by Eden. I've read 3 other books in the series but you don't need to do that if you want to read this one. Each of these books are standalones and contain no spoilers of the preceding books. I have thoroughly enjoyed all of the books I've read in this series. Each one contains compelling characters and enough suspense to keep you on the edge of your seat or whatever.

It's hard to do any kind of meaningful summary of these books which isn't just repeating the blurb without spoilers. These books have layers and layers of mystery so the less you know about the actual plot, the more fun this will be for you. I can tell you this though, all the layers of mystery are what makes these books so good. There is one over arching story but there are also several sub-stories that get unwound along the way.

Ana is a LOST agent who gets drawn into an FBI manhunt by Cash. Cash is the man Ana hasn't been able to forget and after 2 years, the feeling is mutual. Of course the whole "help me with the investigation" thing is pretty nuanced. Cash does want Ana's help but what he really wants is Ana. These two characters are...complicated. You will be gobbling up every detail about them as the picture of their past and present slowly emerges. Both Cash and Ana are hiding things that could destroy them even if some psycho killer doesn't get them first. But the secrets and scars that these two characters have make the relationship between them intense. Everything with them is magnified and the connection feels much realer than you expect to find in a mystery/suspense.

A lot of times the romance in these books is eclipsed by the action or the suspense and the romance portion is lacking. That is not the case with Eden novels and that's why they're so good. For readers like me who were James Patterson, Lisa Gardner, Mary Higgins etc fanatics for years who have grown to love romance, we couldn't ask for more than these books. That is particularly true if you like things a little dark and dirty, as I do.

This is another hit for Cynthia Eden and an excellent choice to kick off your summer.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

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