Sunday, April 30, 2017

Book We Didn't Finish - April Edition

The Fifth Letter - I got about halfway through this book and was so bored.  I was expecting a thriller, but all I got was a group of unlikable friends who talked about each other behind their backs and whine about their lives.  I was really bored and didn't care who wrote the fifth letter.

Livia Lone: This was a random pick at my library.  I could accept the main character being a cop who avenge kills (kind of like Dexter).  I was even becoming invested with the "before" scenes when Livia and her sister were sold as children.  But when the main character gets herself off while reminiscing about her murdering the serial rapist, I had to quit.  Not my cup of tea.

The Other Widow: I really wanted to like this one.  But I found I couldn't care for any of the characters.  How can I like someone who has an affair, but in the same breath says she will fight for her marriage?  What??  Maybe you shouldn't have cheated in the first place. I gave up at about 20%

Cage: After enjoying Axel, I was looking forward to reading Cage's story.  I loved his character in Axel.  But, I got in about 10% and couldn't even stomach the rest of the book. What happened to the guy in  the first book? In this one, he takes his nephew to the doctor and is enamored by the nurse Melissa with the big chest.  Because that is what makes a woman beautiful, right?  He runs into her at a bar during his "sister" Izzie's bachelorette party, not knowing she is friends with her. She is in the wedding, how does he not know her? But, whatever. He propositions her and practically molests her on the dance floor (which she allows becasue he is so hot), not even knowing her name.  His "friends with benefits" side piece, Mandy, gets into a fight with the Melissa trying to stake her claim.  He is so turned on (whatever) from his dance with Melissa, that he takes Mandy (the side piece) into the office at the club and screws her instead.(OK, gross!).  And the way he treats Mandy psycho clinger or not) honestly was borderline rape. I'm tired of reading about men who are so turned on that they HAVE to have sex. Ugh! I just knew I wouldn't be able to like this character after that scene.  I may go onto the next book, but I'm kind of afraid this one ruined the series for me.

The Roanoke Girls - I got about halfway through this one and couldn't stomach it any more.  The characters were unlikable. The secret was let out very early on in the book.  I wasn't expecting the incest, child grooming and rape story-line.  The parts about how the girls had to choose it made me ill. This is abuse that NO ONE tells the police about and it happened for years. I was most bothered about the sections where each of the Roanoke girls talk about the grandfather/uncle/father getting them 14 years old.  This got lots of 5 star reviews, but I couldn't finish it.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

April Mini Musings

Dane - So I figured I'd give the Mackenzie's series a try after reading Avenged by Jay Crownover.  This is the first in the series and it seems that all of them are novellas.  I can't say that I enjoyed this one.  I know it was a novella, but it was SO fast.  Dane left Charlie 10 years before and after being in town for 10 minutes, they are having sex in her auto-body garage. Then hours later, they are professing their love and making marriage plans.  No real back story, just some dialogue and sex. The one thing that bugged me about the novella is  that the town of Surrender is a small town.  I want to know how Charlie kept the fact that her son was Dane's from his brothers.  No one did the math or got a good look at the kid over a span of 6 months of her being in town?  That is one hugely populated small town!  I had a hard time buying into that!
A Christmas Wish (Dane):So, to totally torture myself, I had to read the sequel to Dan'es story.  Thankfully, I got it for free from the library.  This one wasn't really any better than the first one.  Basically, Charlie has been holding off on setting a wedding date.  She is afraid of how it will affect their son.  The kids os confused and resents Dane for not being there.  Um...what part of your mother kept you from him do you not understand?  Why was Dane in the wrong here?  OF course there is a HEA.  I'm not sure I'll read any more of these novellas.
Sister Sister:  This one was just an OK read for me.  It was pretty predictable and I found myself skimming parts of it.  I'll never understand how a family doesn't do DNA testing on a person who shows up after YEARS of not being around.  Especially when that person was a little kid when they disappeared.  Is it really that unreasonable to ask just to avoid fraud?  At any rate.  There were a couple of surprises, but the book overall dragged for me.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Blog Tour: Interview with Kate Brandes, Author of The Promise of Pierson Orchard

We are really excited to have with author Kate Brandes with us today for an interview.  She is promoting her book, The Promise of Pierson Orchard.  Make sure to come back on May 6 to read a review of the book!

Author: Kate Brandes
Publisher: Wyatt-MacKenzie Publishing
Date of publication: April 2017

Long before fracking ever came to Minden, Pennsylvania, the fissures in the Pierson family were developing into major fault lines.

Green Energy arrives, offering the rural community of Minden the dream of making more money from their land by leasing natural gas rights for drilling. But orchardist, Jack Pierson, fears his brother, Wade, who now works for Green Energy, has returned to town after a twenty-year absence so desperate to be the hero that he’ll blind their hometown to the potential dangers. Jack also worries his brother will try to rekindle his relationship with LeeAnn, Jack’s wife, who’s recently left him. To protect his hometown and to fulfill a promise to himself, Jack seeks out his mother and environmental lawyer, Stella Brantley, who abandoned Minden–and Jack and Wade–many, many years ago.

“Brandes checks off all the boxes for quality fiction: the characters are well-rounded, the settings, such as the apple orchards, the crisp Silver Creek, and the rocky outcrops, are vividly described, and the plot is well-organized and crisply paced. The tension between the characters satisfyingly rises to a crescendo that’s in sync with the larger environmental crisis that threatens the town.” – KIRKUS REVIEWS

Kari& Autumn: What inspired you to become a writer?

Kate: I’m not sure inspired is really the word for what happened to me. I began writing in my mid-thirties. Before that I worked as an environmental scientist, a job I still have. 

It was after my first son was born that I was struck with a feeling of wanting to try making something that would reflect my view of the world. I’ve always loved reading fiction and understand the world better through stories.  I’ve also kept journals all my life, used mostly for working out problems or making important decisions. So perhaps it was inevitable that I turned to writing as the creative outlet I found myself searching for.

Even though I had two small children, a full time job, and more volunteer commitments than any sane person should have, I crammed in time to learn how to tell a story on paper. I worked hard, whenever I could. And eventually, after years of rewriting and rewriting, I got a publishing contract for my book.

Kari& Autumn:
 Where do you come up with the ideas for your books?

Kate: I feel like the ideas find me rather than the other way round. It always starts with a small thing - something I fixate on. Then I start to build on that and if I feel like I have enough of a story possibility, I start writing.

Kari& Autumn: What exciting projects are waiting in the wings?

Kate: I’m writing a new novelJ It’s another book club fiction work with an eco bent, partly inspired by Edward Abbey’s The Monkey Wrench Gang.

Kari& Autumn: Who is your favorite literary character and why?

Kate: I love Olive Kitteridge.

Kari& Autumn: Just for fun, if you could be any animal, what would it be and why?

Kate: I’d be a sea turtle, because the oceans seem like the last frontier on earth and I’d love to experience the world as they do. 

Purchase Links

About Kate Brandes

An environmental scientist with 20 years of experience, Kate Brandes is also a watercolor painter and a writer of women’s fiction with an environmental bent. Her short stories have been published in The Binnacle, Wilderness House Literary Review, and Grey Sparrow Journal. Kate is a member of the Arts Community of Easton (ACE), the Lehigh Art Alliance, Artsbridge, the Pennwriters, and the Women’s Fiction Writers Association. Kate lives in a small town along the Delaware River with her husband, David, and their two sons. When she’s not working, she’s outside on the river or chasing wild flowers.

Connect with Kate

Kate Brandes’ TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Monday, April 17th: Broken Teepee
Tuesday, April 18th: Thoughts on This ‘n That
Monday, April 24th: The Book Whisperer
Wednesday, April 26th: 100 Pages a Day
Friday, April 28th: From the TBR Pile
Monday, May 1st: Write Read Life
Tuesday, May 2nd: Kritter’s Ramblings
Wednesday, May 3rd: The Paperback Pilgrim
Thursday, May 4th: A Chick Who Reads
Monday, May 8th: Patricia’s Wisdom
Tuesday, May 9th: Book Reviews and More by Kathy
Wednesday, May 10th: Books and Bindings

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Blog Tour: Slow Burn Cowboy by Maisey Yates

Author: Maisey Yates
Publisher: Harlequin
Date of publication:

In Copper Ridge, Oregon, a cowboy’s best friend might turn out to be the woman of his dreams… 
If Finn Donnelly makes a plan, he sticks to it. After his brothers left Copper Ridge, Finn stayed behind, determined to keep their ranch going by himself. And when he realized his feelings for Lane Jensen were more than platonic, he shoved that inconvenient desire away. It was easy…until it wasn’t. Suddenly his brothers are coming home to claim their share of the property. And Lane is no longer just in his fantasies. She’s in his arms, and their friendship is on the line…
He’s been her buddy, her handyman, her rock. But until that one breathtaking kiss, Lane somehow overlooked the most important thing about Finn Donnelly—he’s all man. They’re right together, no matter how much his volatile past has bruised him. Finn wants to hold Lane’s body, but he doesn’t want to hold her heart. But Lane is falling fast and now she’s got a plan of her own…to show Finn there’s nothing hotter than friendship turned to slow-burning love.
Also includes a bonus Copper Ridge novel, Take Me, Cowboy!

Slow Burn Cowboy is the seventh book in the Copper Ridge series and the second one that I have read.  I thought this one did a much better job as a stand  alone novel as it introduces a lot of new characters and didn't rely on a lot of back story.  This is Finn and Lane's book.  They have been best friends for 10 years, but lately, they have booth been having trouble denying their feelings for each other. 

I did enjoy this one for the most part.  I liked Lane and Finn.  Their relationship felt comfortable and the leap from friends to lovers wasn't so hard to buy into.  There was also very little angst and that was refreshing.  More than the romance, I liked the story-line of Finn's brothers coming back home. Each of them seem to be looking for something and they are hoping that the ranch their grandfather lef them will hep provide that.  None of them really grew up together, so it will be interesting watching the brothers' relationship develop over the next few books.

The only thing that I didn't care for in the book was the long passages of inner thought in the middle of a conversation.  Who does that in real life?  Sometimes, I forgot what they were talking about.  I also didn't care for the way Lane rambled on and on over everything.  I get that it was supposed to be amusing, but it got old after a while.  

Despite that, I do recommend this pone.  It's a cute friends to lovers story and a pretty quick read.  I look forward to the next one.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About Maisey Yates

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Maisey Yates lives in rural Oregon with her three children and her husband, whose chiseled jaw and arresting features continue to make her swoon. She feels the epic trek she takes several times a day from her office to her coffee maker is a true example of her pioneer spirit.
In 2009, at the age of twenty-three Maisey sold her first book. Since then it’s been a whirlwind of sexy alpha males and happily ever afters, and she wouldn’t have it any other way. Maisey divides her writing time between dark, passionate category romances set just about everywhere on earth and light sexy contemporary romances set practically in her back yard. She believes that she clearly has the best job in the world.
Connect with Maisey
Maisey Yates’ TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Tuesday, April 25th: Reading Reality
Wednesday, April 26th: Ms. Nose in a Book
Thursday, April 27th: From the TBR Pile
Friday, April 28th: Back Porchervations
Monday, May 1st: Staircase Wit
Wednesday, May 3rd: Stranded in Chaos
Thursday, May 4th: Books and Spoons
Thursday, May 4th: Written Love Reviews
Friday, May 5th: What I’m Reading
Monday, May 8th: Moonlight Rendezvous
Tuesday, May 9th: Books a la Mode – excerpt
Wednesday, May 10th: A Chick Who Reads
Tuesday, May 16th: The Romance Dish
Wednesday, May 17th: Becca the Bibliophile
Friday, May 19th: The Sassy Bookster
Monday, May 22nd: A Splendid Messy Life

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Spotlight: The Illusionist's Apprentice by Kristy Cambron

Author: Kristy Cambron
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Date of publication: March 2017

Harry Houdini’s one-time apprentice holds fantastic secrets about the greatest illusionist in the world. But someone wants to claim them . . . or silence her before she can reveal them on her own.
Boston, 1926. Jenny “Wren” Lockhart is a bold eccentric—even for a female vaudevillian. As notorious for her inherited wealth and gentleman’s dress as she is for her unsavory upbringing in the back halls of a vaudeville theater, Wren lives in a world that challenges all manner of conventions.
In the months following Houdini’s death, Wren is drawn into a web of mystery surrounding a spiritualist by the name of Horace Stapleton, a man defamed by Houdini’s ardent debunking of fraudulent mystics in the years leading up to his death. But in a public illusion that goes terribly wrong, one man is dead and another stands charged with his murder. Though he’s known as one of her teacher’s greatest critics, Wren must decide to become the one thing she never wanted to be: Stapleton’s defender.
Forced to team up with the newly formed FBI, Wren races against time and an unknown enemy, all to prove the innocence of a hated man. In a world of illusion, of the vaudeville halls that showcase the flamboyant and the strange, Wren’s carefully constructed world threatens to collapse around her. Layered with mystery, illusion, and the artistry of the Jazz Age’s bygone vaudeville era, The Illusionist’s Apprentice is a journey through love and loss and the underpinnings of faith on each life’s stage.

About Kristy Cambron

Kristy Cambron fancies life as a vintage-inspired storyteller. Her debut novel, The Butterfly and the Violin, was named to Library Journal’s Best Books of 2014 and nominated for RT Book Reviews’ Choice Awards Best Inspirational Novel of 2014 and for the 2015 INSPY Awards for Best Debut Novel. Her second novel, A Sparrow in Terezin, was named Library Journal’s Pick of the Month (Christian Fiction) for February 2015 and a Top Pick for RT Book Reviews. Kristy holds a degree in Art History from Indiana University. She lives in Indiana with her husband and three young sons.
Connect with Kristy

Kristy Cambron’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Friday, February 24th: BookBub Blog – New Historical Books for Book Clubs
Monday, April 3rd: Unabridged Chick
Wednesday, April 5th: Black ‘n Gold Girl’s Book Spot
Tuesday, April 11th: Books ‘n Tea
Wednesday, April 12th: Books a la Mode – guest post
Monday, April 17th: Suzy Approved
Wednesday, April 19th: A. Holland Reads – spotlight
Friday, April 21st: Just Commonly
Monday, April 24th: I Brought a Book
Wednesday, April 26th: From the TBR Pile
Monday, May 1st: Reading Reality
Wednesday, May 3rd: Just One More Chapter
Friday, May 5th: Books Without Any Pictures
Monday, May 8th: Let Them Read Books
Wednesday, May 10th: A Chick Who Reads
Monday, May 15th: Broken Teepee
Wednesday, May 17th: Kritter’s Ramblings

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Blog Tour: Excerpt of Too Hard to Forget by Tessa Bailey

Author: Tessa Bailey
Series: Romancing The Clarksons, #3
On Sale: April 25, 2017
Publisher: Forever

This time, she's calling the shots.

Peggy Clarkson is returning to her alma mater with one goal in mind: confront Elliott Brooks, the man who ruined her for all others, and remind him of what he's been missing. Even after three years, seeing him again is like a punch in the gut, but Peggy's determined to stick to her plan. Maybe then, once she has the upper hand, she'll finally be able to move on.

In the years since Peggy left Cincinnati, Elliott has kept his focus on football. No distractions and no complications. But when Peggy walks back onto his practice field and into his life, he knows she could unravel everything in his carefully controlled world. Because the girl who was hard to forget is now a woman impossible to resist.


Enjoy this excerpt:

“I don’t know, Peggy.” He whirled on her, closing in until she was forced back onto the desk. “I had an All-American on my squad this morning and now I don’t. That’s all I know.” He pointed a finger toward the window. “I solve problems down on the field. Saving people isn’t my job.”
Saving people. God, there was such a wealth of regret and pain in those two words. But he couldn’t hear it and she couldn’t address it. Letting him know she saw right through his façade to the hurt beneath might force Elliott to close himself off. “You didn’t always limit yourself. Why are you doing it now?”
“Accepting things that can’t be changed isn’t a limitation. It’s realistic.”

“But how will you know if something can’t be changed unless you try?”
“When it comes to certain things, Peggy, trying leads to losing.” He was in her face now, the mint from his toothpaste familiar and inviting where it slid over her lips. “And I don’t lose.”
No one ever stood up this man but her, and she wouldn’t be cowed now. “No? You’re out a receiver.” She hitched herself up on his desk. “I’d call that a loss.”
The tips of his shoes met Peggy’s, his hands gripping the furniture on either side of her hips. “Who do you think you are, little girl? Coming into my office and telling me what I’ve done wrong?” His eyes were brilliant in their vexation, the attraction he was trying so hard to fight. “Where do you get the goddamn bravery?”
“The bravery is what you liked best about me,” she breathed, heat sizzling in a downward V toward her thighs. “Isn’t it?”
“No. That bravery is what almost led to my downfall.” His hands found her bottom, jerking her to the edge of the desk. “I resented it. Still do.”
“Liar,” Peggy whispered, easing her thighs wider. “You’re dying for an excuse to head for another downfall.” When her legs were as open as she could spread them, she leaned up to Elliott’s ear and let her breath shake loose. “One thrust.”
Elliott’s right hand came up out of nowhere, molding over Peggy’s mouth as his hips crowded into the notch of her legs. With a quick maneuver to recline her halfway back, Elliott’s erection found the apex of her thighs, delivering an aggressive pump against her underwear that sent a scream climbing up Peggy’s throat, only to be trapped by his hand. Knees jerking up out of reflex over the rush of sensation, an orgasm almost—almost— broke past the surface, sending her waters rippling out on all sides. Her legs wanted to hug Elliott’s waist, her voice wanted to beg for one more, one more, one more, but he shook his head, denying her, even though his gaze was hot, a low groan issuing from his harshly masculine mouth.
He leaned in and nipped the lobe of her ear. “Next time, ask for two.” 



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Tessa Bailey is originally from Carlsbad, California. The day after high school graduation, she packed her yearbook, ripped jeans, and laptop, and drove cross-country to New York City in under four days. Her most valuable life experiences were learned thereafter while waitressing at K-Dees, a Manhattan pub owned by her uncle. Inside those four walls, she met her husband, best friend, and discovered the magic of classic rock, managing to put herself through Kingsborough Community College and the English program at Pace University at the same time. Several stunted attempts to enter the work force as a journalist followed, but romance writing continued to demand her attention.

She now lives in Long Island, New York with her husband and daughter. Although she is severely sleep-deprived, she is incredibly happy to be living her dream of writing about people falling in love. 


Monday, April 24, 2017

Blog Tour: Concepcion and the Baby Brokers by Deborah Clearman

Author: Deborah Clearman
Publisher: Rain Mountain Press
Date of publication: March 2017

In nine thematically linked stories set largely in Guatemala, Concepción and the Baby Brokers brings to life characters struggling with universal emotions and dilemmas in a place unfamiliar to most Americans. From the close-knit community of Todos Santos to the teeming danger of Guatemala City, to a meat-packing plant in Michigan and the gardens of Washington DC, Deborah Clearman shows us the human cost of international adoption, drug trafficking, and immigration.

A Cup of Tears, the opening novella, reveals a third-world baby farm, seen through the eyes of a desperate wet nurse, a baby broker, and an American adoptive mother. In “The Race” a young man returns to his native village to ride in a disastrous horse race. “English Lessons” tells of a Guatemalan immigrant in Washington DC who learns more than English from a public library volunteer. A teenage girl tries to trap her professor into marriage in “Saints and Sinners.”

With searing humanity, Clearman exposes the consequences of American exceptionalism, and the daily magic and peril that inform and shape ordinary lives.

Concepcion and the Baby Brokers was an interesting mix of novellas that show a darker side of life in the poorer society of Guatemala.  It's hard to believe that baby selling is a reality even today.  I had mixed feelings about the book.  I definitely felt invested in the first story about the stolen twins and the American adoptive parents.  I liked how it was told through the eyes of all of the players.  It helped me get a clearer picture of each person's motivation behind their actions.  It was uncomfortable to read, but sucked me right in. My heart broke for everyone involved. I wish the book been expanded and focused more on that story. The ending of the novella left me wanting more and to know what happened next for everyone involved.  It just felt unfinished.

 Unfortunately, I didn't connect with the rest of the stories.  I found myself skimming through them.  That is not to say they are not worth reading.  I think this book will appeal to a lot of people as it has something for everyone.  

“In these vivid and often heart-wrenching stories, Deborah Clearman illuminates Guatemalan culture at ground level, through characters whose struggles are palpable and moving. The collection couldn’t be more timely, or necessary.”
Julie SalamonWendy and the Lost Boys
“With deep respect for Guatemalan culture, particularly its variations in the beautiful, haunted town of Todos Santos, Deborah Clearman gives us these lovely, captivating stories out of Guatemala. Hers is a voice worth hearing; these are stories worth reading.”
Mark BrazaitisJulia & Rodrigo and The River of Lost Voices: Stories from Guatemala

Purchase links

About Deborah Clearman

Deborah Clearman is the author of a novel Todos Santos, from Black Lawrence Press. Her short fiction has appeared in numerous literary journals. She is the former Program Director for NY Writers Coalition, and she teaches creative writing in such nontraditional venues as senior centers, public housing projects, and the jail for women on Rikers Island. She lives in New York City and Guatemala.

Tour Stops
Monday, April 10th: A Bookish Affair
Wednesday, April 19th: Eliot’s Eats
Monday, April 24th: From the TBR Pile
Thursday, April 27th: Savvy Verse & Wit
Monday, May 8th: Lit and Life
Tuesday, May 9th: Bibliotica
Monday, May 15th: Bookish Way of Life
Thursday, May 18th: 5 Minutes For Books
Monday, May 22nd: Bibliophiliac
Tuesday, May 23rd: Kahakai Kitchen

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Book Spotlight: Surreal by R.E. Hargrave

The Divine Trilogy series, book 3
by R.E. Hargrave

***2015 FINALIST for BDSM Writers Con Golden Flogger Award for Best BDSM Novel of the Year***

Catherine O'Chancey is a young submissive who has found her happily ever after, with a man far better than she’d ever dreamed.

Or has she? Is life that easy?

Jayden Masterson first opened his playroom to Catherine—a provocative Irish beauty with a penchant for pain—and then his heart to her everyday persona, Erin. For him, life has never been more perfect . . . Or more confusing.

He's comfortable as a Dominant, but still finding his way as a lover and equal partner. Jayden is also learning that he can't protect his jewel from everything—nor should he. Some battles she must fight on her own.

The travesties of Erin's past still haunt her, and as the couple move forward in their merging relationship, they must now cope with the physical damage left behind by her abuser.
Catherine and her Master have a lot to learn—about each other, and about themselves. If Jayden and his jewel can overcome the challenges they'll face on the next leg of their journey, their ending just might be . . . Surreal.

***Contains explicit sexual content (including multiple partners and gender pairings) and mature situations which could be trigger-inducing for some readers.***

Catherine O’Chancey is a reserved, demure, and graceful submissive. All traits she trained hard to enhance when she discovered the world of Dominance and submission in college. In an attempt to start fresh after the unexpected death of her last Dom, Catherine moves to Dallas, TX to escape the shroud of darkness he left behind in her life. She has tried to fight the need that resides deep within her to submit, but finally has to admit she can’t for it is not a choice, but part of who she truly is. After months of mental preparation, she ventures back into the lifestyle by attending a coveted open-night event at Dungeons and Dreams, an exclusive BDSM club.

Is it fate or coincidence that Catherine garners the attention of one of the club’s board members who happens to be on the hunt for the perfect sub – a partner who enjoys receiving pain and pleasure as much as he enjoys doling it out?

Jayden Masterson is many things: a firm Dom, a shrewd businessman, and a gentleman. What he isn’t, is someone who partakes in relationships outside of contractual ones with his multiple, uncollared, regular submissives. While he likes rough sex, he is not an animal, and can find pleasure only if it is consensual. What his harem is missing is a pain slut; could there be one in his future?

Upon meeting Catherine, Jayden feels an instantaneous spark inside him that has him wanting to know not just her body, but her mind. He wants to unravel her mysteries and discover her secrets. Through pain can they find the pleasure they seek? Can part-time pain lovers find full-time fulfillment when it’s not in their contract?

Over the past year of being Jayden Masterson’s collared submissive, Catherine O’Chancey has worked through the mental terrors left behind by her old Dom—she thinks. To celebrate their collaring anniversary, Jayden organizes a special day, during which her final limits and fantasies will be realized. Will it prove to be more than she can handle? Can she endure the erotic onslaught her mind and body will experience and survive unscathed?

While Catherine faces dark shadows and pleasurable highs, Jayden finds his own inner strength being tested. He has come to realize that, somewhere along the way, Catherine has taken possession of his heart, mind, and body. Now he faces his biggest challenge ever; he must let go of all his submissives but one: his jewel, Catherine. Can he leave his philandering ways behind? Has he made the ultimate mistake by putting his jewel into the hands of others?

Domestic engineer. Author. Burgeoning editor. And quite possibly certifiable. Believing every story can shine bright with a bit of tenacious tough love, R.E. Hargrave is thorough and to the point. An international bestselling author, she takes storytelling and manuscript polishing seriously, working with her authors and on her own creations to ensure they come to life, crawling from the pages and into the reader’s souls.

Hargrave lives on the outskirts of Dallas, TX and is married to her high school sweetheart; together they are raising three children. A native 'mutt,' she has lived in New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Alabama, Texas, and California. She is fond of setting her stories—which range from the sweet to the paranormal, to the erotic and horrific—on location in South Carolina and Texas.

Amazon ✯ Website ✯ Facebook ✯ Pinterest ✯ Goodreads ✯ Tumblr ✯ Twitter ✯ YouTube ✯ Bookbub

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Blog Tour: Faking It by Carly Phillips & Erika Wilde

Authors:Carly Phillips & Erika Wilde
Publisher: CP Publishing
Date of publication: April 11, 2017

Confirmed bachelor Max Sterling isn't into rescuing damsels in distress, but when the very tempting Hailey Ellison needs his help, there's only one thing for him to do. Step in and pose as her loving fiancé. Except there is nothing fake about his attraction to her, or how much he wants her beneath him in his bed, moaning his name. But what starts as a sexy, flirty, temporary engagement, quickly becomes something more serious that neither one ever anticipated. 

Add to Goodreads:

Faking It is the second in the "Book Boyfriend" series.  Book boyfriend is a really good name for this series because I know my list has just gotten longer.  I thought I loved Wes from the first book,  Big Shot, but I have to say, I think I loved Max even more!  This is his and Hailey's story.  We caught a brief glimpse of her in the first book.  When done right, the fake engagement can be a fun read and this one was no exception.

As I said, I loved Max.  His reaction to finding out that Hailey really wasn't engaged was so perfect! It was fun watching these two fall for each other.  The way he helped Hailey realize that she was perfect, flawed body and all, was really sweet.  

What I love about these is that each one can really be read as stand alone books.  My only real complaint is that it was too short and I wanted more of the couple.  I definitely recommend this one.  It's a quick read and I will bet Max will make your ever growing book boyfriend list!

Buy links:

Amazon Kindle   B&N Nook  Kobo  iBooks  Google Play

About the Authors:

***About Carly Phillips***

Carly Phillips is the N.Y. Times and USA Today Bestselling Author of over 50 sexy contemporary romance novels featuring hot men, strong women and the emotionally compelling stories her readers have come to expect and love. Carly is happily married to her college sweetheart, the mother of two nearly adult daughters and three crazy dogs (two wheaten terriers and one mutant Havanese) who star on her Facebook Fan Page and website. Carly loves social media and is always around to interact with her readers. You can find out more about Carly at


***About Erika Wilde***
Erika Wilde is the author of the sexy Marriage Diaries series and The Players Club series. 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


Friday, April 21, 2017

The Secrets You Keep by Kate White

Author: Kate White
Publisher: Harper Paperbacks
Date of publication; March 2017

What would you do if you realized that your new husband, a man you adore, is keeping secrets from you—secrets with terrifying consequences?

Bryn Harper, an accomplished self-help author, already has plenty to deal with. She’s still recovering from a devastating car accident that has left her haunted by recurring, smoke-filled nightmares. Worse still, she can’t shake the ominous feeling her dreams contain a warning. 

In the beginning, Bryn’s husband Guy couldn’t have been more supportive. But after moving into a new house together, disturbing incidents occur and Guy grows evasive, secretive. What the hell is going on, she wonders? Then, a woman hired to cater their dinner party is brutally murdered.

As Bryn’s world unravels—and yet another woman in town is slain —she must summon her old strength to find answers and protect her own life. Her nightmares may in fact hold the key to unlocking the truth and unmasking the murderer.

I was definitely in the mood for a good psychological thriller when I picked up The Secrets You Keep.  I had really enjoyed Eyes on You, so I was hoping to be in for a great read.  The story revolves around Bryn, who is a self-help author.  She is recovering from a car accident and living with her husband full-time for the summer.  Up until the accident, theirs had been more of a commuter relationship.  She beings to feel like things aren't quite right with her husband. When a local caterer is murdered, she becomes the number one person of interest.

For the most part, I liked this book.  I'm not going to really talk plot, because there are a lot of twists, red herrings and surprises.  Would I say that this was a psychological thriller?  Not really.  But it is definitely a good solid mystery.  I didn't call the ending and that is always a bonus for me.  I thought the plot was well laid out and is told through Bryn's eyes.  I enjoyed finding things out along with Bryn as it kept me engaged.  Despite all of that, I never really had the sense that Bryn was in serious danger throughout most of the book.

 I would recommend this one.  Just don't go into it expecting a fast paced seat of your pants thriller.  

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Throwback Thrusday: Three Down the Aisle by Sherryl Woods

Author: Sherryl Woods
First published in 2005 by Silhouette
When Melanie D'Angelo arrived at Rose Cottage, she was only looking to mend her shattered heart and restore the beautiful house her grandmother once called home. The last thing she wanted was to become involved with her landscape designer!
Mike Mikelewski couldn't deny his instant connection with the gorgeous Melanie, but the single dad already had a woman in his life--his adorable, but troubled, young daughter, Jessie. Even though Melanie made his heart pound--and Jessie smile--he wouldn't allow himself to take a chance on a love that was blossoming like the Rose Cottage garden. Or could the trio become the family that Jessie had always dreamed about?
Three Down the Aisle is the first in the Rosewood Cottage Sisters series.  Melanie finds out her boyfriend has a wife and two kids and is devastated by the betrayal.  her sisters convince her to take some time off and restore their grandmother's cottage.  Mike is the local landscaper and cringes at the ruin of a garden every time he passes Rosewood Cottage.  When he offers help to Melanie to get the garden back in shape, he didn't count on falling for her.
I thought that this was a super cute and sweet romance.  I loved how Mike and Melanie became friends before lovers.  They were really sweet together.  I also love how Melanie was with Mike's daughter Jessie.  It's a pretty short read, so the romance is quick.  But I didn't mind, I actually found it quite believable.  I definitely recommend this one. I look forward to the rest of the series.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Blog Tour: Review and Excerpt of Ride Rough by Laura Kaye

Author: Laura Kaye
Publisher: Avon
Date of publication: April 25, 2017

Maverick Rylan won’t apologize for who he is—the Raven Riders Motorcycle Club Vice-President, a sought-after custom bike builder, and a man dedicated to protecting those he loves. So when he learns that the only woman who has ever held his heart is in trouble, he’ll move heaven and earth to save her.
Alexa Harmon thought she had it all—the security of a good job, a beautiful home, and a powerful, charming fiancé who offered the life she never had growing up. But when her dream quickly turns into a nightmare, Alexa realizes she’s fallen for a façade she can’t escape—until sexy, dangerous Maverick offers her a way out.
Forced together to keep Alexa safe, their powerful attraction reignites and Maverick determines to do whatever it takes to earn a second chance—one Alexa is tempted to give. But her ex-fiancé isn’t going to let her go without a fight, one that will threaten everything they both hold dear.

So after not having read anything really exciting lately, I was so excited when I started Ride Rough. I flew through this book and loved every second of it.  It is the second book in the Raven Riders series. I will say that while it can work as a stand alone, you might want to read the first book, Ride Hard to understand what happened before this one.  It picks up pretty much right after the events of Ride Hard.  Which brings me to that funeral scene..I definitely was a bit choked up at the Last Rev.  

I loved Maverick.  His love for Alexa never went away and he would do anything to protect her from harm. I also loved his fierce loyalty to his club and his family.  I also grew to really love Alexa. I was a bit wary of her at first because she came off as kind of weak.  I rooting for her the whole time to find her strong self again.  

Along with the romance, we get to visit with the other wonderful characters from the first book. I for one can't wait for Slider and Cora's book! There is also action and a very unlikable bad guy interwoven into the book.  This is one second chance romance that you need to read.  Make sure to read the excerpt below for a sneak peek!

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“Ride with me.” The words flew out of Maverick’s mouth, and he didn’t want to take them back even though, fuck, it put him out there to be smacked down again. But damn if it wouldn’t be worth it to feel her holding him, pressed up tight against him, laughing in his ear.

Alexa hesitated and maybe even looked a little nervous, but Maverick could see the interest in the liveliness of her eyes.

“Don’t think. Just say yes,” he said.

Alexa tilted her head and narrowed her gaze at him, and then she smiled. “Okay. Yes.”

That’s my girl. He kept the sentiment to himself, but he felt it down deep. His Alexa was in there. The one who could throw caution to the wind and have fun doing absolutely nothing. The one who laughed freely and bantered relentlessly. Maverick gave a single nod.

“Let me tell Mom. Be right back,” she said.

“I’ll bring the bike around.” Maverick took a step backward, but then paused when Alexa turned and hurried toward the house. His gaze traced her curves and lingered on the bare skin of her thighs. Thighs that were going to be wrapped around him in just a few short minutes. Thighs that had been wrapped around him in all kinds of ways many times. Many times. Fuck.

A few houses down, Maverick straddled his Harley Night Rod Special and brought the engine to life on a low rumble. He pulled the bike to the curb in front of the Harmon house and waited. He didn’t have to wait long.

Alexa came flying out through the garage. She made eye contact with him and it fucking seared his blood. For some reason this ride felt weighted with a significance he couldn’t put into words. And he wasn’t trying. He was just going to enjoy the hell out of it. Because Maverick knew her agreeing this one time didn’t change anything. Not anything important.

By the time she reached him, Alexa was smiling even though he could tell she was trying to hold that shit back. But she couldn’t, and that got to him, too. For a moment, she hesitated, like she wasn’t sure what to do. No way that was it, though, because even though it had been years, she’d been in his saddle as many times as his bed. He suspected the real issue was giving herself permission to do what she was gonna have to do—get close and hold tight. To him.

Something she hadn’t done in years.

But then she did it.

About the author: 

Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over thirty books in contemporary romance and romantic suspense, including the Hard Ink and Raven Riders series. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. She lives in Maryland with her husband, two daughters, and monster puppy, Schuyler, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.