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Results 26 - 50 of 1,487
26. Meet Olivia Beckett from Fix You by Christine Bell and Giveaway

 

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Good morning, Olivia!  Can you share a typical day in your life?

[Olivia Beckett] Sure. I wake up, usually around eight a.m., and make a chocolate covered strawberry smoothie (DO THIS. It’s DELICIOUS. ½ cup vanilla yogurt, ½ cup fat free milk, ½ cup frozen strawberries, 1.5 TBS dark cocoa powder. Blend. Drink. Rejoice.) Then, if I have morning classes, I go to those. If not, I try to hit the gym or go for a walk or something. In the afternoons, I do homework so that in the evenings I can hang out later on. Did I say drink a pot of coffee throughout the day? If I didn’t, add that in. I love coffee. What else? Usually, one night a week we hit the bar and play beer pong or pool. Lately, I go hoping to run into Bash. Although, I don’t know how much longer I’ll be doing any of those things. My parents are having some…financial issues so school might not be an option next semester.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words come to mind when you think of Bash?

[Olivia Beckett] Gorgeous. Troubled. Gorgeous. Wait, did I say that one already? Okay, so the third one would be strong.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What’s his most appealing quality?

[Olivia Beckett] Physically? His mouth. Particularly his lips. They’re perfect. As for his personality, his determination.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What’s irritates you the most about him?

[Olivia Beckett] Probably the same as above. His determination. The same self-discipline that makes him a great boxer and a strong person able to overcome odds and succeed is also the quality that makes him stubborn and set on his course. That course is one that will take him far from Boston…and from me. So, yeah. As much as I admire it, that’s pretty irritating sometimes.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you could change one thing you’ve done in your life, what would it be?

[Olivia Beckett] I’d go back to the day my abusive ex, Andy, asked me out and instead of saying yes, I’d kick him in the balls. Hard.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

[Olivia Beckett] Dental floss. I keep it in every purse I own. Nothing worse than having chicken stuck between your teeth and not being able to get it out. Well, I mean, not *nothing* worse. Like, drowning is worse, probably. And being infested by maggots. But no floss is still pretty bad.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you share your dreams for the future in five words or less.

[Olivia Beckett] Me and Bash together forever.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you!

[Olivia Beckett] Thank YOU! It was fun. And try one of those smoothies. You won’t regret it, pinky swear.

“Fresh, sexy, and addicting–you won’t want to put it down!”—New York Times Bestselling Author Jen McLaughlin

FIX YOU is part one in the new adult McDaniels Brothers serials from USA TODAY Bestselling Author, Christine Bell. Fans of Monica Murphy, Jen McLaughlin, and H.M. Ward will be seduced by Bash and Olivia’s story and will look forward to a new installment in this ongoing family saga every month!

Want to learn more about FIX YOU? Be sure to check out this exclusive interview with Christine Bell!

Follow the tour and win some awesome prizes!

About FIX YOU, Bash and Olivia Book One (The McDaniels Brothers, #1)

Olivia Beckett’s once-charmed life is falling apart. Her family is about to lose everything, and she has almost no chance of continuing her college education. She can’t even seek solace from her high school sweetheart. He’s changed. She doesn’t recognize the boy she used to know— his violent behavior is escalating and it scares the hell out of her. Her whole world is crumbling, and she has no one to turn to……
Sebastian “Bash” McDaniels is an up and comer in the boxing world working nights at the local college bar until he can land the fight of his dreams that will get him the hell out of Boston and away from his family’s tragic past. He’s weeks from his goal when Olivia Beckett comes tumbling into his life in a flash of silky dark hair and haunted eyes. When he saves her from a potentially brutal beating, they begin to grow close, but Olivia’s ex isn’t ready to let her go so easily.
Bash can’t bring himself to walk away, but fixing Olivia just might leave him broken…
On Sale: March 31, 2014

Add FIX YOU to your TBR pile on Goodreads!

About Christine Bell

Christine Bell is the USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romances, and one half of the happiest couple in the world. She doesn’t like clowns or bugs (except ladybugs, on account of their cute outfits), but loves movies, football, and playing Texas Hold ‘Em. Writing is her passion, but if she had to pick another occupation, she’d be a wizard. She loves writing fun, sexy romance and deep, emotional new adult novels, but also hopes to one day publish something her dad can read without wanting to dig his eyes out with rusty spoons.

Subscribe to Christine’s mailing list for exclusive content, ARCs, giveaways and more!

Website | Twitter | Goodreads | Facebook


Prizes:

A $50 e-giftcard to Amazon or Barnes & Noble (winner’s choice, open internationally) and an opportunity to have a character named after the winner in serial #3 of The McDaniels Brothers series!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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27. Spotlight and Giveaway-Shade’s Fall and Stand of Honor

 

SHADE’S FALL

The Last Riders Book Four

By: Jamie Begley

&

STAND OF HONOR by Cathryn Williams   (See Below)

 

Blurb

Shade is everything Lily doesn’t want in a man. He’s rude, obnoxious and he’s definitely not a cowboy. The tattooed enforcer for The Last Riders is a mystery Lily doesn’t want to solve. He’s too much for her to handle, especially with the nightmares from her past constantly threatening her sanity.

Lily is everything Shade wants in a woman. She’s sweet, kind and submissive. When she discovers the truth about The Last Riders, it threatens to tear apart every relationship within the club. Her rebellion causes the predatory instincts to rise in the ex Navy SEAL sniper.

When the nightmares from her past come calling, Shade is her only hope of surviving the approaching confrontation.  Could their passion be Shade’s downfall?

*NOTE TO READERS*
This book is a stand alone story. However, to receive the full experience these books are recommended before “Shade’s Fall” in the following order:
Razer’s Ride (The Last Riders, #1)
Viper’s Run (The Last Riders, #2)
Knox’s Stand (The Last Riders, #3)
Sex Piston (Biker Bitches, #1)
Teased (The VIP Room, #1)
Tainted (The VIP Room, #2)

SHADE’S FALL

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Shades-Fall-The-Last-Riders-ebook/dp/B00J47HAUS/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1395351353&sr=8-3-fkmr0&keywords=shade%27s+fall+jamie+begley

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Shades-Fall-The-Last-Riders-ebook/dp/B00J47HAUS/ref=sr_1_sc_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1395351425&sr=8-1-spell&keywords=jamiebegley+Shade%27s+fall

B&N:http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/shades-fall-jamie-begley/1118942200?ean=2940149538737

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/shade-s-fall

Link to Follow Tour: http://tastybooktours.blogspot.com/2014/03/now-booking-release-blast-march-21st.html

Author Bio

“I was born in a small town in Kentucky. My family began poor, but worked their way to owning a restaurant. My mother was one of the best cooks I have ever known, and she instilled in all her children the value of hard work, and education.

Taking after my mother, I’ve always love to cook, and became pretty good if I do say so myself. I love to experiment and my unfortunate family has suffered through many. They now have learned to steer clear of those dishes. I absolutely love the holidays and my family puts up with my zany decorations.

For now, my days are spent writing, writing, and writing. I have two children who both graduate this year from college. My daughter does my book covers, and my son just tries not to blush when someone asks him about my books.

Currently I am writing four series of books- The Last Riders, The Dark Souls, The VIP Room, and Biker Bitches series. My favorite book I have written is Soul Of A Woman, which I am hoping to release during the summer of 2014. It took me two years to write, during which I lost my mother, and brother. It’s a book that I truly feel captures the true depths of love a woman can hold for a man. In case you haven’t figured it out yet, I am an emotional writer who wants the readers to feel the emotion of the characters they are reading. Because of this, Teased is probably the hardest thing I have written.

All my books are written for one purpose- the enjoyment others find in them, and the expectations of my fans that inspire me to give it my best. In the near future I hope to take a weekend break and visit Vegas that will hopefully be this summer. Right now I am typing away on my next story and looking forward to traveling this summer!”

Author Links

Goodreads page:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7127521.Jamie_Begley

Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorJamieBegley

Website:

http://www.jamiebegley.net/

Email:

JamieBegley@ymail.com

Twitter: @Jamie_Begley

Rafflecopter Giveaway

-GRAND PRIZE: $50.00 Amazon Gift Card and Signed Copy of RAZERS RIDE,VIPERS RUN, KNOXS STAND, SHADES FALL, SEX PISTON, TEASED and TAINTED

-TWO RUNNERS UP: $25.00 Amazon Gift Card

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Stand of Honor

Stand Series #1

By: Cathryn Williams

Blurb

Melanie Brooks is determined to prove her father wrong, she does have what it takes to be a champion in the cage. The only problem is that she needs a trainer, one that can help her get the championship belt she’s determined to win. Her brother’s friend Zane is the obvious choice, now she just has to convince him.
Zane, a disgraced MMA fighter, takes one look at the feisty Melanie and knows he is headed for trouble, but decides to go for it anyway. For her own safety, he should stay away, but Melanie’s fighting spirit reawakens his own, forcing him to make the choice to stay a prisoner of his past or fight his way back to being a champion.

Goodreads page: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21400516-stand-of-honor

Buy Link:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Stand-Of-Honor-Cathryn-Williams-ebook/dp/B00J4OURUQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1395351640&sr=8-1&keywords=stand+of+honor+cathryn

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Stand-Of-Honor-Cathryn-Williams-ebook/dp/B00J4OURUQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1395351668&sr=8-1&keywords=stand+of+honor+cathryn

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/stand-of-honor

Author Bio

Cathryn Williams is the oldest and only female in a family of four children. While born on the east coast, she has lived all over the country. Her father’s job as an engineer caused the family to move throughout her entire youth. She has spent time in Texas, Idaho, and Nevada before moving back to the eastern part of the country as an adult. It was during these early years that her love of literature began, starting with Nancy Drew and growing with the Sweet Valley High series stories. This passion grew with each book and has caused her to transition into writing her own stories. Cathryn’s inspiration stems from a diverse childhood, loving family, and oversized lapdog Scarlet. When not giving life to her characters, she enjoys traveling, marathoning TV shows, and spending time with her family.

Author Links

Goodreads page:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8026733.Cathryn_Williams

Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCathrynWilliams

Email:

AuthorCathrynWilliams@gmail.com

Twitter:

@AuthorCathrynW

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28. Cynthia Garner’s Top 5 Items in a Post-Apocalyptic Woman’s Survival Kit and Giveaway!

Cynthia Garner dropped by the virtual offices to share her Top 5 items every woman needs to pack in her post-apocalyptic survival kit.  See if you agree, learn about her latest release, Vampire’s Hunger, and then enter the giveaway!

Cynthia Garner’s Top 5 Items in a Post-Apocalyptic Woman’s Survival Kit

1. Chocolate

2. Tampons

3. Pain reliever

4. Lip balm

5. Fabric refresher

What do think?  What would you add to your post-apocalyptic survival kit?  Maybe the guy on the cover of Vampire’s Hunger??

 

VAMPIRE’S HUNGER  by Cynthia Garner (April 1, 2014; Forever Yours E-Book; $3.99)

In a post-apocalyptic wasteland, civilization no longer exists, and only the strongest survive. The few remaining humans must band together with supernatural beings to battle unspeakable evil-or all hope will be lost.

Kimber Treat is an ordinary woman with an extraordinary gift: she can raise the dead. As a necromancer who works with the police, she communicates with murder victims to bring their killers to justice. But after a normal session goes horribly wrong, Kimber realizes she’s summoned something dark and sinister. She’s unwittingly unleashed the apocalypse, and everyone blames her…except Duncan MacDonnough, the devastatingly handsome vampire she can’t stop fantasizing about.

As society shuts down and flesh-eating hordes close in, Duncan vows to protect Kimber. He can keep her safe from others-but not from the insatiable carnal hunger he feels for her. Now racing to reverse the chaos she’s unleashed, Kimber can’t afford any distractions. But even as she succumbs to Duncan’s seduction, she fears that he has a hidden agenda. And with the line between life and death starting to blur, his secrets might kill her-or worse…

About the author:

Cynthia Garner discovered her love for writing when her sixth grade teacher told the class to write a story that began “It was a dark and stormy night…” With that Cynthia’s love for all things paranormal was born.  When she’s not working her day job as a mostly mild-mannered Human Resources Manager, she’s on her laptop writing or playing way too much Solitaire. Originally from Northeast Ohio, Cynthia now lives in the desert Southwest.

Social Media Links:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

Buy Links:

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

iTunes

Excerpt –

Two nights later Duncan answered the knock on Kimber’s door. Murray stood there, just as fragile looking as ever. “What now?” Duncan asked.

The other vampire lifted his chin, motioning toward the inside of the apartment. “Maddalene wants to see your little necromancer again.” His face was expressionless but Duncan caught the smirk in his voice.

He clenched his jaw. No way in hell was Kimber going back there until he and Maddalene came to an understanding. The fact that Maddalene had overridden him and allowed hungry vampires into his living quarters, to threaten Kimber and her friends, had driven home the point that the sense of loyalty he felt toward Maddalene was a one-way street.

“Tell Maddalene to forget it,” he told Murray.

“I’m not your messenger boy, MacDonnough.” The skinny excuse for a vampire gave a grunt and pointed to his head. “Still attached, the way I like it. You got something to say to Maddalene, you say it yourself.” He gave a sardonic salute with two fingers and sauntered off.

Damn it.

Duncan closed the door and turned to face the other inhabitants of the apartment. Natalie stood in the kitchen, leaning back against the counter, her hands braced on either side. Aodhán was kicked back in the recliner, his gaze steady and calm. Kimber, his lovely Kimber, stood beside the sofa, arms crossed and one foot tapping on the floor.

“I am not going back there,” she said.

“No, you’re not.”

“I mean it, Duncan. Maddalene wants the impossible, and I won’t do it.”

“I agree.”

“No matter what you…” A frown dipped between her brows. “Wait. What?”

He couldn’t stop the small grin that quirked his lips. She was adorable when she was confused. It wasn’t a look he got to see very often because she had such a sharp mind. “I said I agree. You’re not going to see Maddalene.”

“Oh.” Her hands dropped to her sides. “Um, why not?”

Ignoring the interested gazes of Aodhán and Natalie, he walked over to Kimber and took her face in his palms. “Because I don’t trust her right now, and I mean to keep you safe.”

Her lips parted and he couldn’t stop himself from dipping his head to press a soft kiss against her mouth. When he drew away, her lashes fluttered and swept up to show slightly dazed eyes. That was a good sign, anyway. He knew she wasn’t indifferent to him. If he could prove to her that he wouldn’t lose control and drain her, maybe one day she’d trust him enough to let him close again. To let him love her.

He took a step back. Where the hell had that come from? He didn’t love Kimber. He couldn’t love her. She was mortal. He was not. He didn’t deny he wanted her—his lust for her was nearly a living entity on its own. But love?

No.

He didn’t have the time for love. He didn’t have the luxury for love.

He didn’t have the right. He’d done things he wasn’t proud of. Kimber deserved better than him. She certainly didn’t deserve the danger he’d be putting her in if Maddalene found out he had a soft spot for Kimber. And he deserved…

He firmed his jaw. He deserved only what she gave him. But that didn’t negate the fact that she had something he wanted—well, actually, two things he wanted: the ability to contact the Unseen and a body he wanted to lose himself in. Both might be within his reach if he could just get Maddalene to back the hell off.

Yeah, Duncan. Just keep telling yourself all you’re interested in is her body. You might really believe it someday.

He turned away from Kimber. Grabbing up the tire iron from where he’d placed it underneath the coffee table, he headed toward the front door. “I’m going to talk to Maddalene.”

“Wait.” Kimber’s soft voice stopped him. When he looked over his shoulder at her, she said, “Be careful.”

He gave a nod and pulled open the door. As he closed it behind him, he heard Aodhán say, “He’s strong and he’s fast. On his own, he’ll be able to get around any zombies out there. He’ll be fine.”

Fine against zombies, yes. Against his own heart? He wasn’t so sure.

5 print copies of VAMPIRE’S HUNGER, Grand prize: Twilight Saga White Collection

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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29. Cover Reveal and Giveaway-One Lucky Night Anthology

I’m so happy today to share the cover and official blurb of One Lucky Night with you!


One night can change everything…

The crew at Boston’s Brazen Head Pub hasn’t been very lucky in love. Can a mysterious visitor inspire them to look past old hurts and misconceptions and give romance a chance? One Lucky Night is a collection of five sexy interwoven novelettes by Aria Kane, Grace Teague, Ana Blaze, Constance Phillips, and Melinda Dozier.

Lucky Break by Aria Kane
Four years ago, chef Derek Chase walked out of Andrea Rivera’s life after a tragedy neither of them were prepared to deal with. When she’s called to the Brazen Head to repair a dishwasher, old sparks ignite buried feelings.

Lucky Star by Grace Teague
When her life is threatened by a mugger, Charlotte Price realizes she’s in love with her best friend, Tommy Leung. The Brazen Head seems like the perfect neutral place to confess her feelings, but nothing goes according to plan.

A New Tune by Ana Blaze
When it comes to dating, Holly Hall has one unbreakable rule: no musicians. Not even gorgeous ones. Especially not gorgeous ones. Dating them only leads to heartbreak. So why did she let singer-songwriter Cian O’Neill kiss her? And why is she thinking about doing it again?

Lexi’s Chance by Constance Phillips
As a bartender, Sean Whalen meets all kinds of women every night, but none turn his head the way that Lexi has. She’s been playing cat and mouse with him for weeks. Tonight, Sean’s determined to get Lexi to quit teasing and take a real chance on him.

Drink or Dare by Melinda Dozier
A bachelorette party Drink or Dare game pairs paramedic students, Rachel Robertson and Killian Whelan, in a flirting match. Soon, the dares threaten to turn their academic rivalry into something much more.


One Lucky Night will be available in print and at all major ebook retailers on May 7th. For now, you can add it to Goodreads!


About the Authors

Aria Kane is a recovering mechanical engineer and romance writer. As a military brat, she grew up all over the country, but now lives in sunny Florida with a 60 lb mutt who thinks he’s a chihuahua.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest | Goodreads

Grace Teague lives in Pittsburgh with her spouse, children and a cat named Mr. Sushi.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Ana Blaze lives near Washington DC with her charming husband and three cats who firmly believe they are royalty. Ana is a member of Romance Writers of America.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest | Goodreads | Tumblr

Constance Phillips lives in Ohio with her husband, two ready-to-leave-the-nest children, and four canine kids. Her perfect fantasy vacation would involve hunting Dracula across Europe with her daughter, who also digs that kind of stuff.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest | Goodreads | Tumblr

Melinda Dozier teaches English to middle schoolers by day and writes at night. She lives in Guatemala, Central America with her college sweetheart and three sons.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest | Goodreads


Giveaway

The authors are giving away four print copies of One Lucky Night before you can buy it!

Enter here.

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30. Interview with Alyssa Montgomery, Author of Echoes of the Heart

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Good morning, Alyssa!  Describe yourself in five words or less.

[Alyssa J Montgomery] Creative, Manic, Organised, Loyal, Reliable

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about Echoes of the Heart?

[Alyssa J Montgomery] Absolutely! Media Tycoon Jake and Legal Secretary Amanda were torn apart by circumstance. Both married others and it seemed hopeless that they’d ever find their way back to each other. Now Jake is divorced and Amanda is widowed. Having never forgotten Amanda, or forgiven her for walking out on him, Jake wants her back to achieve closure on their relationship so he can finally move on with his life. Meanwhile, Amanda hasn’t been leading the easy life Jake imagines. She’s been through her own private hell.

There are many twists and turns, lots of secrets revealed throughout the book that hopefully will keep readers wondering and wanting to turn those pages! Jake has to learn to trust and be prepared to make himself vulnerable rather than being set for revenge. Amanda has to stand up for herself and believe she’s worthy of love. Ultimately she’s rewarded with a hero she can lean on when she has been carrying the weight of responsibility for another for so long, and they both overcome the odds and achieve their happy ending.

[Manga Maniac Cafe]  Can you share your favorite scene?

[Alyssa J Montgomery] Gosh, that’s a hard question! Maybe the opening chapter at the cemetery because it’s charged with emotion and there are a lot of questions raised there that are answered throughout the book. There’s a small glimpse of Jake revealing his heroic potential as he stands up for Amanda even though he really doesn’t like her at that point and is seeking closure on their relationship. The scene also starts to reveal just how much stress Amanda’s been under and gives an insight into her personality in that she can feel a little empathy for a woman who would attack her publicly. And…despite the setting (a funeral), there’s the sexual tension and awareness that still thrums between them and promises to heat up as the story moves along.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What gave you the most trouble with the story?

[Alyssa J Montgomery] Jake’s pain. He’s been devastated by what he believes is Amanda’s betrayal of his love. Carrying around that hurt has really stunted his ability to move forward and have a decent relationship. He’s bitter and twisted and hell-bent on revenge and he lashes out at her with some extremely unkind words and treatment. I went over and over it needing to strike a balance—hoping he wasn’t coming across as too nasty with his bitterness and that the reader would understand and forgive him because of the depth of his hurt. But I also wanted him to be cutting hoping that the reader would empathise with how Amanda was being gutted by his misconceptions. I want the reader to feel the pain they’re both feeling and to wonder how they’re ever going to heal all the scars of the past wounds they’ve suffered. I hope I’ve succeeded in bringing forward Jake’s heroic traits early enough so the reader knows he’s there unconditionally when Amanda desperately needs support and that the reader will end up loving him!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

[Alyssa J Montgomery] My iPhone.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name three things on your desk right now.

[Alyssa J Montgomery] A vase of red and yellow roses; a photo of my three fabulous children at the Matterhorn Mountain in Switzerland posing with two St. Bernard dogs, and a long “To Do” List.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you could trade places with anyone for just one day, who would you be?

[Alyssa J Montgomery] Maria Sharapova in a grand finals match of a Grand Slam Tennis Tournament (preferably Wimbledon). I love tennis and I’d love to be able to walk onto a court and experience her amazing range of shots and skill. I’d also love to feel super fit for a day (not to mention enjoying being trim, taut and terrific)!!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] You have been granted the use of one superpower for one week.  Which power would you choose, and what would you do with it?

[Alyssa J Montgomery] Supernatural Speed! The ability to physically zip around as if someone put me in fast motion. That would be awesome. Imagine how much I’d be able to achieve! The house might actually be spotless and the ‘To Do” List might end up just a blank piece of paper…although I can just imagine the dog watching me with a very perplexed expression and getting dizzy!

(I guess I’d just have to tone it down when I was driving or I might find myself broke from fines!)

If you have a number for a hotline that can grant this wish please forward immediately!!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are some books that you enjoyed recently?

[Alyssa J Montgomery] The entire Anne Gracie series featuring “The Stolen Princess”; “His Captive Lady” etc {Berkley Sensation}

Michelle Condor “The Most Expensive Lie of All” {Harlequin Mills & Boon}

Lynne Graham “The Dimitrakos Proposition” {Harlequin Mills & Boon}

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[Alyssa J Montgomery] I’d love to hear from readers. My webpage is www.alyssajmontgomery.com My email is alyssaj.montgomeryromance@gmail.com and I’m also on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/AlyssaJMontgomery and Twitter @Alyssaromance

Excerpt

Amanda Bennett is waiting in your outer office.

Jake froze as he read the note handed to him by his personal assistant. After Bennett’s funeral, he’d instructed her to notify him as soon as Amanda made contact. But he’d been expecting a telephone call, not a personal visit.

He was sitting in a meeting at a critical stage of negotiations that could seal the acquisition of a national television network into his media empire — common sense demanded he keep Amanda waiting. But his usual ironclad control deserted him and he couldn’t focus on the meeting any longer.

Amanda was here.

Each of his senses surged into an acute state of alert.

‘Jake, are you okay?’ his ex-wife asked him quietly. The other people in the room were too caught up in a troublesome clause to notice the exchange. Sophie was sitting in on this meeting as a representative of the Board of Directors. Upon their marriage, she’d taken her grandfather’s seat on the board.

He looked at her with regret. Sophie was a stunningly-attractive redhead. She was smart, sexy, talented, loyal and kind — everything a man could want in a woman. He wished with all his heart he could have felt the same degree of attraction to her as he did for Amanda.

‘Jake?’ Sophie pressed.

He passed her the message he’d received. The instant she read it, she turned troubled green eyes to his and shook her head. ‘You’re not going to see her are you?’

‘I asked her to come.’

It had been a month since Bennett’s funeral. In that time, he’d telephoned the Bennett household only to find the number was disconnected. He’d driven to the Bennett estate a couple of times but nobody answered when he buzzed for admission. Short of scaling the high, wrought-iron front gates and contending with the two Dobermans that stood growling at him from the other side, there was nothing he could do except bide his time and wait for Amanda to come to him.

He’d been sure she would. The passion burning between them was too hard to ignore. Hell! He’d tried and failed dismally. Amanda had been a thorn in his side — a lover he’d never been able to forget, or to forgive.

‘Jake, what in God’s name are you thinking?’ Sophie demanded quietly with a frown of concern.

‘Mr Formosa?’

All the men and women seated at the long conference table looked at him, waiting for him to respond to whatever it was that had been suggested. It was impossible for him to keep his mind on business proceedings. He had to go to Amanda.

‘Ladies and gentlemen, you’ll have to excuse me. An urgent matter requires my immediate attention.’ He glanced at his watch. ‘We’ll resume our negotiations after lunch.’

A peripheral part of his brain registered the surprised reactions of a few of his executives and a ripple of irritation from the representatives of the television corporation, but he didn’t care. Amanda was waiting for him. That was all that mattered. Finally she was here, ready to acknowledge their mutual attraction. Ready to become his lover again.

As he rose from his seat at the head of the table, urgency gripped him, making his heart pump harder. Barely able to contain his anticipation, it was hard to restrain himself from sprinting out of the conference room to meet her.

It was Sophie’s hand on his arm that made him pause.

‘No. Don’t do this to yourself,’ she pleaded in hushed tones as she waved away hovering employees who would have approached him.

‘I have to,’ Jake said.

She grabbed his hand, steered him into a small soundproof room off the conference area and closed the door. ‘Just what do you hope to achieve, Jake?’

About the book:

 

She betrayed him and left him to be with another. Now that she’s alone again, nothing is going to stop him from coming for her.

Australian media tycoon Jake Formosa does not believe in forgiving…or forgetting. So when he discovers that Amanda — the woman who once broke his heart — is newly widowed, he immediately enacts his revenge.  Jake is intent on making Amanda remember him, and making her suffer for what she did. He will leave her broken and alone, and finally have his closure. 

But Amanda is not the sweet girl that Jake remembers, and her life is far from perfect. As the web of lies surrounding her begins to unravel, Jake finds himself once again ensnared. Can he learn to overlook the past and risk his heart again?

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31. Spotlight and Giveaway-Quicksilver Soul by Christine D’Abo

 

About QUICKSILVER SOUL

Nicola Tesla has never needed a man to complete her life. A gifted engineer, she has always had her experiments to keep her company-or she did, before her vile boss stole them. Now she’s working at the Archives in New London, where the memories of the dead are stored. But it isn’t long before Nicola discovers she’s being watched . . . by a most intriguing, sinfully sexy man.
Archivist Emmet Dennison should be busy extracting memories from the dead. Instead he’s been asked to keep an eye on the brazen, strikingly beautiful Nicola Tesla. Soon Emmet and Nicola are shaken by an attraction neither of them wants. Yet when a nefarious man takes them hostage, Nicola and Emmet will need to rely on their attraction, and the growing bond between them, to stop a madman hellbent on destroying New London forever.

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About the Author

Multipublished author Christine d’Abo loves exploring the human condition through a romantic lens. She takes her characters on fantastical journeys that change their hearts and expand their minds. A self-professed sci-fi junkie, Christine can often be found chatting about her favorite shows and movies. When she’s not writing, she can be found chasing after her children, dogs or husband. Christine is published with Carina Press, Ellora’s Cave, Samhain Publishing, Cleis Press and Berkley. Please visit her at her blog and come chat with her on Twitter @Christine_dAbo.

Excerpt

Nicola barely managed to suppress a gasp at Emmet’s unexpected words against her ear. He’d moved up behind her while her attention had been focused on Keegan, and now his body was so close she could have swayed little more than an inch and they would be in complete contact. Her traitorous body reacted to his proximity in a way she wouldn’t have assumed herself capable of before now. Her nipples were hard and a warmth she’d never felt the result of being with another person, consumed the sensitive spot between her legs.

This was a rather inconvenient time to develop physical attraction to a man.

Doing her best to keep her body as still as possible, Nicola nodded. “I’ve only seen that state a few times before. I suspect he’ll have a difficult time sleeping, even if that’s the one thing he wants most in the world.”

“What do you think Edison wants him for? Surely, a boy of that age would have little to offer to an engineer.”

“Sometimes age doesn’t inform ability.” Did he know what he was doing to her by standing this close? She wanted nothing more than to turn around and slap him for eliciting this reaction from her. “Would you mind stepping back?”

His hot breath tickled the side of her neck as he chuckled. “It’s easier for me to speak quietly if we are close. What are you afraid of, Miss Tesla?”

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32. Like Water for Chocolate

"Like water for chocolate" refers to the desired temperature for the perfect cup of hot chocolate. And that is: just at the point of bursting into a rolling boil. So, too, is the steamy love affair between Tita and Pedro: just about to boil over. Blistering, indeed! Books mentioned in this post Like Water for Chocolate Laura Esquivel Used [...]

0 Comments on Like Water for Chocolate as of 4/3/2014 10:17:00 PM
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33. Larva is Live on Amazon

 

Larva Kindle Cover

We are pleased to announce the release of our second young adult book in our Alpha Girls series, Larva.  Book two of The Alpha Girls series follows Caitlin and her friends during their freshman year of high school.

Caitlin has been dating Josh most of the summer, but she finds herself torn between Josh and the new man on campus, Trick. Trick shared a passionate kiss with Caitlin over the summer on a Florida beach, but she never thought she’d see him again.

High school is full of choices. Some more difficult than others.

 


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34. Review: Vampire’s Hunger by Cynthia Garner

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

It seems as though I have fallen into a zombie rut again.  I don’t know why I keep turning to these books, because they are starting to give me nightmares.  Seriously!  Vampire’s Hunger isn’t even that graphic, and I woke up during the night after I finished it from a scary dream.  Heart pounding, can’t fall back asleep nightmare.  Good thing the puppers were there to cuddle!  I am taking a little break from zombies, but I bet it won’t last long!

 

Kimber is a necromancer.  She works with the police, raising the dead to find out who murdered them.  After a summoning goes wrong, she discovers that she’s unleashed the zombie apocalypse.  In addition to fending off zombies, she has to deal with the threats of the rest of humankind who also blame her for bringing doom upon the human race.  I would so not want to be in her shoes.

Duncan is the second in command of the local vampire clan.  He has been lusting after Kimber for years, but she keeps rebuffing his advances.  She doesn’t trust vampires after they murdered her family, and she’s not about to get close to Duncan.  He vows to protect her and her friend Natalie as society takes a nose dive.  Along with the fairy Aodhan, Duncan has his work cut out for him.  His queen, Maddalene, wants Kimber to raise her consort from the dead, and she just won’t take no for an answer.  Sworn to obey her every command, Duncan is torn between his growing feelings for Kimber and his loyalty to his queen.

Vampire’s Hunger is a fast, sexy read.  I liked the setting – the world has just ended, and Kimber is still adjusting to her new normal.  She blames herself for the zombie plague, and she is determined to figure out a way to put an end to it.  The day she brought Richard Whitcomb back to life something went wrong, and she is going nuts trying to understand why the Unseen, the source of her power, has changed.  The day she called Richard back, something felt wrong and evil, and when she tried to release him back to death, he fought back.  The entire episode was a complete disaster, challenging Kimber’s skills to keep him under control.  It also marked the start of the zombie apocalypse, leaving one unfortunate observer bitten and infected.  Yup, Kimber’s slip up resulted in Patient Zero and the end of the world.

I originally started reading this book because I saw the word zombie in the blurb, but I think it was more focused on the vampires.  I felt that the zombies were more of an obstacle for Kimber and  her friends to get around than an actual threat.  There were a few battles with them as they traversed from Kimber’s apartment to Duncan’s vampire enclave, but it was the vampires that were the real danger in Vampire’s Hunger.  Duncan’s queen is a nutbag, and she is going to force Kimber to raise her dead consort, come hell or high water.  Kimber knows that the attempt will kill her; it’s hard enough raising someone who just died, let alone someone whose original death was a hundred years ago.  The Unseen isn’t being very friendly to her, either.  Something dark, evil, and dangerous keeps lurking in it’s depths.

The main conflict between Kimber and Duncan is Kimber’s distrust of vampires.  She is afraid that Duncan will lose control and drain her of every drop of blood in her veins, leaving her a lifeless husk.  Her family was murdered by vampires, and they haven’t done much to gain her trust since then.  Duncan, however, has been nothing but protective of her, watching over her and Natalie and working with Aodhan to keep them safe.  Still, with the insane Maddalene threatening everyone she cares about, it’s no wonder that Kimber has no love for vampires.  Duncan refuses to go against his queen, even though he knows that she is off her rocker and that she is becoming increasingly unstable.  I was disappointed that it took him so long to decide to do something about her, but once he makes up his mind that Maddalene is too much of a liability to keep her power over the clan, he quickly moves against her.

The book ends on a cliffhanger, but Vampire’s Thirst comes out in May, so I didn’t give it a ding for that.  I enjoyed Vampire’s Hunger, and I am looking forward to book 2.

Grade:  B

Review copy provided by publisher

From Amazon:


In a post-apocalyptic wasteland, civilization no longer exists, and only the strongest survive. The few remaining humans must band together with supernatural beings to battle unspeakable evil-or all hope will be lost.

Kimber Treat is an ordinary woman with an extraordinary gift: she can raise the dead. As a necromancer who works with the police, she communicates with murder victims to bring their killers to justice. But after a normal session goes horribly wrong, Kimber realizes she’s summoned something dark and sinister. She’s unwittingly unleashed the apocalypse, and everyone blames her . . . except Duncan MacDonnough, the devastatingly handsome vampire she can’t stop fantasizing about.

As society shuts down and flesh-eating hordes close in, Duncan vows to protect Kimber. He can keep her safe from others-but not from the insatiable carnal hunger he feels for her. Now racing to reverse the chaos she’s unleashed, Kimber can’t afford any distractions. But even as she succumbs to Duncan’s seduction, she fears that he has a hidden agenda. And with the line between life and death starting to blur, his secrets might kill her-or worse . . .

Approx. 50,000-60,000 words.

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35. Interview with R E Butler, Author of The Alpha’s Heart and Giveaway

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in five words or less.

[R E Butler] Creative, fun, silly, loving, honest.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about The Alpha’s Heart?

[R E Butler] This story is about the alpha of the Wilde Creek pack as he comes to terms with changes he’s made to his pack and reconnecting with a woman from his past.

[Manga Maniac Cafe]  Can you share your favorite scene?

[R E Butler] My favorite scene takes place between Acksel and Brynn when she’s decided to set the record straight with him.

“I realized what’s been bugging me. You never asked me to be your mate; you just talk about us as if we’re already a couple. I’m pretty sure that things don’t work that way in the forest, so I think you’re taking advantage of me being human and not knowing the score.”

“I am not taking advantage of you,” he huffed.

“Really? So when was it exactly that you asked me if I wanted to be your mate? Because I don’t remember you doing that.”

A low growl rumbled in his chest and she waved her hand and rolled her eyes. “Oh, please. You know I’m right.”

Damn it. She was right. He’d made an assumption and it hadn’t occurred to him to actually ask her. Maybe because he’d been afraid of what her answer would be.

He inhaled deeply and exhaled slowly. “Brynn, would you—”

“Hold it!” she shouted, putting both hands up. “Are you serious? You’re going to just ask me now? How easy do you think I am? Wait, wait. Don’t answer that. What I mean is that you have to earn me, buddy, and I don’t come cheap. You might have been able to get me into your bed six weeks ago without all the fuss, but that ship has sailed.”

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What gave you the most trouble with the story?

[R E Butler] Expanding the cast of characters. In the first book in the series, the focus is mainly on the hero and heroine, and their families. In this book, I had to bring in other members of the pack. I know that these characters will eventually have their own stories as well, so it wasn’t as simple as just slapping names down and moving on, I had to think about each character and create their back stories.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

[R E Butler] My cell phone.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name three things on your desk right now.

[R E Butler] Coffee mug, ear buds, notebook

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you could trade places with anyone for just one day, who would you be?

[R E Butler] Angelina Jolie. Not only is she beautiful, but…hello! Brad Pitt!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] You have been granted the use of one superpower for one week.  Which power would you choose, and what would you do with it?

[R E Butler] I’d want to be able to fly. I’d zip around to all the places in the world that are on my to-travel-someday list.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are some books that you enjoyed recently?

[R E Butler] Big Furry Deal by Celia Kyle, Mate’s Bite by Milly Taiden, and AgentI1: Tristan by Joni Hahn.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[R E Butler] My website: http://www.rebutlerautho.com

Twitter: @rebutlerauthor

Email: rebutlerauthor@gmail.com

[Manga Maniac Cafe]  Thank you!

SERIES SPOTLIGHT INFO:

Wilde Creek Series

The Wilde Creek series was created in an attempt to write a darker, more intense werewolf series.  The Wilde Creek Pack is archaic in their beliefs that humans and wolves should not interact, but the alpha’s sister throws a wrench into their lives and changes things forever.  Follow the members of the pack as they navigate this new world, find their mates, and make Wilde Creek their home.

 

Mate of Her Heart

Wilde Creek, #1

Publication Date: December 9, 2013

Print Length: 76 pages

ASIN: B00GT25GZC

Werewolf Eveny Moore is coming into her first heat at the age of twenty-five. Bucking tradition, she chooses to go through her first heat alone instead of choosing an unmated male from her pack. There is only one male that she wants in her bed and her life: her best friend, Luke Elrich. But Luke is human and doesn’t understand the consequences of her heat-cycle, so she hides out in a safehouse, planning to ride out the cycle alone and then ask Luke to be her mate.

Luke has loved Eveny forever, but something is going on between them. He’s afraid he’s losing her forever, until she promises to talk to him after her heat-cycle is over. He overhears her brother, the pack alpha, ask another wolf to go to Eveny and take her through the heat-cycle. What her brother doesn’t know is that the male plans to invite some of his friends along. And Eveny is alone in a remote cabin, unprotected. Luke will do anything to keep her safe, even if it means going up against four wolves.

This story contains a meddling brother, a human fighting a pack of male wolves for the only woman he’s ever loved, a female who thought she had a good plan, and bone-melting, skin-tingling hot sex between a male and a female who have loved each other forever.

Available for $1.99 at:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Mate-Her-Heart-Wilde-Creek-ebook/dp/B00GT25GZC/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=8-1&qid=1390831231

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/mate-of-her-heart-re-butler/1117391127?ean=2940045411752

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/mate-of-her-heart/id743066688?mt=11

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/376415

The Alpha’s Heart

Wilde Creek, #2

Publication date: April 10, 2014

Print Length: 130 pages

ASIN: B00J2CJVI4

Alpha wolf Acksel wakes up one morning in the bed of the one human who was kind to him in school. Now, ten years later, Brynn Mara is snuggled up at his side, smelling like passion and sweet dreams. Even though Acksel has declared that his pack members can mate with humans from now on, he knows that any woman he takes as his mate will have a target on her back. Especially if she’s a fragile human. Deciding it’s better to cut things off than string her along when there’s no hope for a relationship, he leaves without a word and ignores her.
But it doesn’t matter if Acksel acknowledges her or not, because their night of passion has left a permanent reminder of what happens when one drunk wolf forgets protection. Angry, banished wolves from his pack discover Brynn’s secret and decide to use her against Acksel. His worst fears have come true, and the only woman who ever touched his heart is now suffering because of his mistake.
This book contains one ticked off, emotionally damaged alpha, the human woman who can tame him, and a sweet little surprise that no one expected.

Available April 10th:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Alphas-Heart-Wilde-Creek-Two-ebook/dp/B00J2CJVI4/ref=sr_1_9?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1395233550&sr=1-9&keywords=the+alpha%27s+heart

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Alphas-Heart-Wilde-Creek-ebook/dp/B00J2CJVI4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1395252864&sr=8-1&keywords=the+alpha%27s+heart+re+butler

Barnes & Noble:

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/no/book/the-alphas-heart-wilde-creek-2/id835140926?mt=11

Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/415845

AUTHOR BIO:

A Midwesterner by birth, R.E. spent much of her childhood rewriting her favorite books to include herself as the main character. Later, she graduated on to writing her own books after “retiring” from her day job as a secretary to become a stay-at-home mom.

When not playing with her kids, wrestling her dogs out the door, or cooking dinner for her family, you’ll find her typing furiously and growling obscenities to the characters on the screen.

Her best-selling series The Wolf’s Mate, Wiccan-Were-Bear, The Necklace Chronicles, Hyena Heat, Wilde Creek, and Ashland Pride are available now.

Connect with R.E.:

Website: www.rebutlerauthor.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/R.E.ButlerAuthorPage

Twitter: https://twitter.com/rebutlerauthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5332306.R_E_Butler

 

Excerpt – R.E. Butler’s Alpha’s Heart

Standing slowly, she walked to the door.  “Who is it?” she called loudly.  Her mind raced.  Her dad and Mia both had keys to her place and wouldn’t be banging on the door in the middle of the night.

“Open the door.  I just want to see you.”

No.  Way.

There was no possible way on earth that Acksel Moore was banging on her door at this hour.  Or any hour, for that matter.

She flipped on the switch to turn on the porch light and drew in a deep breath.  The lock clicked as she turned it and pulled the door open.  Standing in the harsh light was the most gorgeous man she’d ever known.  The star of every dirty fantasy she’d ever had.

And he looked like someone had shot his puppy.

His gray eyes were red and he reeked of whiskey.  His strong jaw was covered with stubble as if he hadn’t shaved in days.  He leaned heavily on the door frame.

“I just want someone to care.”  His words were raw, his tone rough and full of despair.

Her heart cracked painfully as he slumped forward, too drunk to stay on his feet.  She managed to ease his fall to the floor so he didn’t get hurt.  Leaning over, she stroked his forehead.  “Oh Acksel, I always cared.”

TOUR GIVEAWAY PRIZES:

GRAND PRIZE: $25 Gift Card (Amazon, Amazon.co.uk, or Barnes & Noble), eBooks of Wilde Creek One and Two

1st Place: Signed copy of Wilde Creek One (US only)

2nd Place: $10 Amazon, Amazon.co.uk, or B&N Gift Card (Intl)

3rd – 6th Place: eBooks of Wilde Creek One and Two (4 winners – Intl)

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36. Spotlight and Giveaway-You Again by Ashlee Mallory

 

You Again by: Ashlee Mallory

Author Bio

Ashlee lives with her husband, two kids, a dog, and cat surrounded by the majestic mountains of her hometown of Salt Lake.

Born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, she always wanted to know what it was like to live on the other side of the mountains. In college, she interned a semester in DC and later attended law school in Syracuse, New York, where she also ventured to Israel for a summer semester. After graduating law school with a taste of what it’s like living in the bigger world, she moved back home to Salt Lake and took the Utah Bar Exam, got married, and settled in with her hubby and two wonderful kids. After a few more years in the legal realm, she grew restless and turned her pen to one of her first loves—writing stories.

Currently, when she’s not working the day job as in-house counsel, she spends her time with the family and squeezing in writing time—anything to avoid the housekeeping. Just kidding, honey! ;)

She writes with romance and humor at the heart of every story—and a healthy dash of mystery and suspense.

Hopefully she pulls it off.

Email: Ashleemallory7@gmail.com

Website: http://www.ashleemallory.com/

Blog: http://ashleemallory.wordpress.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AshleeMallory

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ashlee.mallory.50

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7912393.Ashlee_Mallory

Newsletter: N/A

Release Date: 3/24/14

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Synopsis: A hopeless crush…

Back in high school, Allie McBride thought the sun set around Sam Fratto’s smiles, even if they were only friends. Now she’s older, wiser, hotter, and teaching at the same school they grew up in. When Sam joins the faculty, she has a chance to make good on the crush that got away. But when a dead body turns up on school grounds, they realize there might be a murderer in their midst. The heat keeps getting hotter between Allie and Sam, but more might be in danger than their hearts…

The cute kid from high school is all grown up…

A family crisis brings true-crime writer Sam Fratto back to town after more than a decade’s absence. Teaching at his alma mater seems like a good way to pass the time—especially when he sees that Allie, the geeky, sweet-mannered girl from high school, has blossomed into the saucy teacher in the classroom next door. Too bad finding a dead body transforms his return into one of his true-crime books come to life. And when it seems the killer might be after Allie next, it’s up to him to keep her safe…

A killer determined to keep the past buried at any price…

As if dealing with the return of one ghost from her past wasn’t enough, it looks like the killer might be the person they least suspected. Someone from the past. Someone with something to hide. Someone who thinks Allie and Sam are getting a little too close to the truth. If Allie and Sam are going to get out of this alive, these two friends to lovers will have to work together…or die together…

Tagline: Old acquaintances, New Lovers, and Murder…

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20944708-you-again

Amazon Buy Link: http://amzn.to/1nkJ0iA

Barnes & Noble Buy Link: http://bit.ly/1ceCGYw

Entangled Book Link: http://bit.ly/1gNPFh3

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37. Spotlight and Giveaway-The Scandalous Love of a Duke by Jane Lark

 

Title: The Scandalous Love of a Duke (Marlow Intrigues #3) Author: Jane Lark Genre: Regency Romance (Historical) Publish Date: April 3, 2014 Publisher: HarperImpulse Event Organized By: Literati Author Services, Inc.

Synopsis

Book three in Jane Lark’s Kindle best-selling Regency romance series!

Isolated by life and choice, John Harding, the Duke of Pembroke, sees an angel in a pale mauve dress across a room and is drawn closer as lust grips firm and hard in his stomach.  The wheat-blonde hair escaping her dull dove-grey bonnet and caressing her neck lures his eyes to a spot he’d like to kiss.  She speaks with animation her hands moving. Then as if she senses his gaze the stranger turns and looks at him.

A rush of pain and longing spilled from Katherine’s heart into her limbs. It was so long since she’d seen John but her reaction was the same as it had been more than half-a-dozen years before. She loved him, secretly, without hope, but a chasm of years and status stood
between them.

Add to Goodreads

Purchase Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA

Excerpt

A glass of red wine balanced in one hand, the stem dangling between his fingers, he joined another group of guests, fulfilling his duty. He trusted no one here.

God, this was his life now, duty and falsehood. He missed Egypt, he missed adventure and peace and simplicity. He was already bored with people’s endless supplication. Everyone seemed to want something from him. They sought to attach themselves to either his wealth or his power.

His grandfather had warned of this.

John had had enough. He was seeking his family to escape it for a little while, and looking for Mary particularly. He knew his vibrant sister would bring him back from the cold darkness crowding in on him.

He’d passed his mother and Edward in the hall, they’d been speaking with Richard and Penny, they’d directed him in here.

His gaze swept about the room then stopped.

There was a young woman standing amidst his family, like a blonde beacon of light amongst his dark-haired black-clad cousins. She was an angel in a pale mauve dress.

Lust gripped had and firm in his stomach, an intense physical attraction. He’d never experienced anything so instant before. But it was a long time since he’d bedded a woman – far too long.

Her figure was a sublime balance of curves and narrow waist. Her spine had a beautiful arch as it curved into the point where her dress opened onto a full skirt.

Wheat-blonde hair escaped a dull dove-grey bonnet, caressing her neck and drawing his eyes to a place he’d like to kiss.

She was speaking with animation her hands moving.

He moved closer and as if she sensed his gaze the stranger turned and looked at him. In answer a lightning need struck his groin, a sharp sudden pain. She was an English Rose among orchids, the sort of woman he had seen nothing of abroad. Her skin was pale, with roses blooming in her cheeks, and her eyes were a vivid beautiful blue, like the bluebells which bloomed in spring, in the woods at Pembroke Place.

She was what he had longed for abroad and not even known he’d been lacking.

His attention wholly captured, desire slipped into his blood as his groin grew heavy with hunger.

This was what came from abstinence he supposed. He’d never had a fancy for fair, fay women before. He did now.

She did not look the sort for a fling though, certainly not the she-wolf type who stalked the foreign fields. His mind began rattling through his guest list, but no name fit her, and her dull grey bonnet and shawl did not speak of affluence. Who was she?

He smiled as he grew nearer, then realised he was staring and shifted his gaze to the others in the group. It was then he noticed Phillip as they turned to towards him. “My God.”

“Your Grace.”

“Phillip.” Lord, John hoped Phillip had not come here with a motive. John did not wish to hear oily grovelling from an old friend. His heart thumped in cold anger, not gladness. Then he looked at the blonde and his breath caught as recognition whispered in his head. Kate.

About the Author

Jane is a writer of authentic, passionate and emotional Historical and New Adult Romance, and a Kindle top 25 bestselling author.

She began her first historical novel at sixteen, but a life full of adversity derailed her as she lives with the restrictions of Ankylosing Spondylitis.

When she finally completed a novel it was because she was determined not to reach forty still saying, I want to write.

Now Jane is writing a Regency series and contemporary, new adult, stories and she is thrilled to be giving her characters life in others’ imaginations at last.

You might think that Jane was inspired to write by Jane Austen, especially as she lives near Bath in the United Kingdom, but you would be wrong. Jane’s favourite author is Anya Seton, and the book which drew her into the bliss of falling into historical imagination was ‘Katherine’ a story crafted from reality.

Jane has drawn on this inspiration to discover other real-life love stories, reading memoirs and letters to capture elements of the past, and she uses them to create more realistic plots.

‘Basically I love history and I am sucker for a love story. I love the feeling of falling in love; it’s wonderful being able to do it time and time again in fiction.’

Jane is also a Chartered Member of the Institute of Personnel and Development in the United Kingdom, and uses this specialist understanding of people to bring her characters to life.

Connect with the Author: Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Website | Goodreads

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38. Interview with Wendy Godding, Author of Time After Time

[Manga Maniac Cafe]  Good morning, Wendy!  Describe yourself in five words or less.

[Wendy Godding] A daydreaming, shopaholic chocolate addict.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about Time After Time?

[Wendy Godding] Time After Time is the story of a girl who can remember her past lives through her dreams.  But those past lives always ended in her murder by the same man before she turns eighteen and now that same man has moved into the house next door.

I’ve always loved the idea of  reincarnation and what would it would mean if you could actually remember your past lives.

[Manga Maniac Cafe]  Can you share your favorite scene?

[Wendy Godding] My favourite scene is definitely towards the beginning of the book,  where Penelope is making her way up to Broadhurst Manor and she sees the stranger on the horse on the hill watching her.  When I was writing that scene I had chills.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What gave you the most trouble with the story?

[Wendy Godding] Bringing the two time periods together and linking them so that there was a crossover between them.  I had to change and rewrite that many times. Time After Time as it is now is completely and utterly different from the original plotline.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

[Wendy Godding] Earrings.  I feel naked and underdressed without them.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name three things on your desk right now.

[Wendy Godding] Happiness – a cute journal I picked up from Kikki K, an owl pen holder full of glitter pens (I have a thing for owls and glitter pens) and a massive faux diamond paper weight that was a gift from a good friend.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you could trade places with anyone for just one day, who would you be?

[Wendy Godding] That is really, really hard.  I’m not sure I’d actually want to BE  anyone else in particular. But I would love to walk the red carpet of the Oscars, not as anyone in particular but just to have that Cinderella moment and wear a stunning dress.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] You have been transported back in time to 1806.  What modern convenience would you miss most, and what would you like best about your new time period?

[Wendy Godding] I would miss my espresso machine!  I don’t know how I’d start the day without it and I won’t drink regular or instant coffee, I’m a bit of a coffee snob.  And I would LOVE the manners of the new time period.  And the dresses.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are some books that you enjoyed recently?

[Wendy Godding] I’ve been reading quite a bit of dystopian young adult lately and have just finished These Broken Stars, by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner, The Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth as well as Veronica Rossi’s third book in her trilogy, Into the Still Blue.  All were wonderful!  I’ve just picked up Wayfarer by Lilli St Crow and am having a lot of trouble putting that down to get on with my real life.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[Wendy Godding] Via my facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/wendygoddingauthor or very soon via my webpage http://wendygodding.com/

Excerpt

‘I think Mr Lockwood has taken a fancy to you,’ Georgina informed Penelope as soon as they were alone. They walked the gardens of the Manor, enjoying the last rose blooms of the season.

‘I’m sure you’re mistaken,’ Penelope replied, hoping just the opposite. ‘I think he is only being polite.’

‘I see how he looks at you. He doesn’t look like that at me — nor Annie — and he is just as polite with us. No, I do believe, my dear cousin, that you have your very first admirer.’

Penelope flushed with pleasure as she recalled Heath’s dark brown eyes and how he’d looked at her with such…She couldn’t find the right word. It wasn’t interest. It wasn’t admiration. It was something else entirely.

‘You like him too!’ cried Georgina, eyeing Penelope’s coloured cheeks.

‘How could I not? You, yourself pointed out how handsome he is. And agreeable. Many times.’

‘Yes, I suppose I did,’ Georgina frowned slightly before continuing, ‘but you know, I simply cannot find out anything about his family.’

‘It’s a delicate subject,’ Penelope observed. ‘Being an orphan must be difficult, and it’s amazing to hear he has no other kin to speak of, save a brother.’

‘Yes, I thought so, too. That’s why I have sent a note to my aunt in London to see what she can find out about Mr Heath Lockwood.’

‘Georgina, you didn’t!’

Georgina shrugged, looping her arm around Penelope’s. ‘Of course I did. Father would not want someone of questionable character staying in our home, I am sure. And as for Mr Lockwood, well, there is no point keeping secrets — if he has any. Everyone knows secrets always come out in the end.’

Something about the way Georgina said that made Penelope feel uneasy, her stomach performing a small flip in the pit of her belly. But she ignored it, spying a bright orange rose bloom and hurrying across the lawns to inhale its scent. ‘Look!’ she cried, ‘Isn’t it marvellous? I’ve not seen one this colour before.’

Georgina eyed it sadly. ‘That bush was Mama’s favourite. It hasn’t bloomed since she passed away. I think it has been in mourning, too.’

Penelope felt for her cousin. ‘You miss her still?’

‘Every day,’ Georgina nodded, ‘I miss her counsel and advice. She would know exactly what to do about Mr Lockwood.’

‘I’m not sure anything needs to be done.’

‘Oh Penelope, you are so naive!’ Georgina admonished. ‘Of course there is everything to be done. Mama would find out in an instant who he was, where he came from, who his parents were, and how much income he has.’

‘Well…’

‘Mama would work him out well enough,’ Georgina continued confidently, ‘and advise whether he is good company to keep — or a good beau to pursue.’

‘I think it’s best to make a judgement when it’s not influenced by things such as money and family,’ Penelope said thoughtfully. ‘We should decide his character based on manners and countenance.’

Georgina sniffed. ‘Well, based on your theory we should all adore Mr Lockwood.’

‘Your father is a good, sensible man,’ Penelope continued, ignoring Georgina’s sarcasm, ‘and a good judge of character. He doesn’t seem to have any objections to Mr Lockwood, and neither does Harry.’

‘Harry would invite a tramp into the house if he thought it would upset me and give him a laugh,’ Georgina replied. ‘I’m not sure Harry is a good judge of character at all. But you are right about Father. He seems just as taken as the rest of us.’

‘Well, there you are,’ Penelope said, pleased and somewhat surprised by her eagerness to defend a man she barely knew. ‘And don’t forget you were singing his praises only a few days ago.’

‘I suppose I was. Still, I look forward to hearing from my aunt,’ Georgina added, ‘and I’m sure you are, too, my dear cousin. Despite your protests of good manners and countenance being enough!’

They had made their way back to the house when Penelope felt the slightest breeze rustle her skirts. She paused and turned, her arms traced with goosebumps.

‘What is it?’ Georgina asked.

Penelope’s eyes scanned the wide expanse of lawn: the gardens, the hedgerows, the rose garden and the late, splendorous orange bloom. Nothing. There was nothing to make her uneasy, nothing to suggest anyone was there.

Turning, she smiled at Georgina, pushing to the back of her mind the sudden chill, the inexplicable anxiety in her stomach, and the feeling they were being watched. ‘Nothing. It’s nothing at all.’

About the book:

She has died countless times before, and she is not going to let it happen again.

Abbie Harper dies just before her eighteenth birthday. It has happened before, more times than she can remember — and always at the hands of the same man. Her dreams are plagued with past lives, cut short.

But this latest dream feels different. Her past life as Penelope Broadhurst — an English pastor’s daughter in 1806 — keeps bleeding into her present life in ways both sinister and familiar. As Penelope meets and falls in love with the dashing Heath Lockwood, so too does Abbie meet the brothers Marcus and Rem Knight. One wants to love her; the other to kill her.

Time is running out for Penelope, but as Abbie mourns her inability to change the past, she chases the slim chance to save her future. To survive, she must solve the puzzle of an ancient love story…and Penelope just might be able to help.

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39. Spotlight and Giveaway-Sex & the Single Vamp by Robin Covington

Sex and the Single Vamp by: Robin Covington

Release Date: 3/24/14

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis:

Cici Trent, vampire and media darling, spends her days finding true love for humans and supernaturals (the “Others”) at her dating agency. But someone is trying to sabotage her business and she needs help. Unfortunately, the best man for the job is the one who broke her still-beating heart two hundred fifty-four years ago.

Deacon is a patient vampire. He’s only loved one woman in over three hundred years— CiCi— and she chose another. So when she shows up in his office asking for help, he finally has the chance to lay that demon to rest. He’ll help her, but for a price—a night in his bed.

Adrenaline, mischief, and a little late-night B&E light the passion that even a couple of lifetimes couldn’t put out. But Deacon has a secret and when Cici is suddenly mortal, his deception might be the only way restore her immortality. Can love bridge the gap between a heartbeat and forever?

Tagline: Love. Sex. Eternity. Dating never gets easier.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20944668-sex-and-the-single-vamp

Entangled Book Link: http://bit.ly/1oi65kF

Author Bio:

Robin Covington, who NYT Best Selling authors, Robyn Carr and Carly Phillips, said was their new “auto-buy author”, writes sizzling hot contemporary and paranormal romance.

A Night of Southern Comfort, her best-selling debut novel was named a 2012 finalist in the RT Book Reviews Reviewers Choice Awards, earned 4.5 stars and was touted by RT Book Reviews as bringing a “fresh, modern feel to the genre while still sticking to the things that get our adrenaline pumping — sex and danger”. When she’s not exploring the theme of fooling around and falling in love, she’s collecting tasty man candy, indulging in a little comic book geek love, and stalking Joe Mangianello.

Robin is a member of the Romance Writers of America, the Washington Romance Writers, a faculty member at Romance University, a member of the Waterworld Mermaids, and a contributor to the Happy Ever After blog at USA Today. You can find Robin on her website, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter (@RobinCovington).

Email: robincovingtonromance@yahoo.com

Website: http://robincovingtonromance.com/

Blog: http://robincovingtonromance.com/burning-up-the-sheets/

Twitter: @RobinCovington

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

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5812874.Robin_Covington

Newsletter: http://averyflynn.us6.list-manage2.com/subscribe/post?u=86d6422aba38201281a747f83&id=a525b102ea

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40. Spotlight and Giveaway – Pretty Reckless by Jodi Linton

Pretty Reckless by: Jodi Linton

Release Date: 3/24

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Synopsis:

Welcome to Pistol Rock, Texas where secrets last about as long as the sporadic west Texas rain showers.

Laney Briggs has long been considered reckless, but she’s turned herself around—she’s respectably engaged and she’s become a Pistol Rock deputy sheriff. Everything’s fine until a dead body turns up and her ex, Texas Ranger Gunner Wilson, decides to stick his boots into the town’s first murder case.

Laney will be damned if she lets Gunner trample all over her turf and her chance at a quiet, contented life. His seemingly endless ability to undermine her resolve and her libido is only outdone by her constant urge to butt heads with him. But when the bodies start to pile up, Laney has to ask the lethal bad boy for a hand—and a truce in exchange for his help.

Having an ex-boyfriend as an ally might not be the best idea, but Laney has always been pretty reckless…

Tagline:  She’s dead-set on giving one bullheaded cowboy the boot.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20944652-pretty-reckless

Amazon Buy Link: http://amzn.to/1mQSXHY

Barnes & Noble Buy Link: http://bit.ly/1fD6usO

EP Book Page: http://bit.ly/1fD6usO

Author Bio:

Jodi Linton grew up across the street from a cow pasture, where she was more likely to be seen selling Kool-Aid in a Dixie cup at ten cents a pop, or inviting neighbors over to watch one of her plays staged on her father’s Bass boat.  

In 2001, she traded in the rednecks, cowboys, and mesquite trees of her hometown to chase destiny out west. After a few years of mucking it around with the roughnecks, dust storms, and droughts, she decided to dust off her boots and head home. With a History degree in one hand and a marriage license in the other, she followed her husband in 2006 to central Texas the heartland, fabulous Austin.

After settling into the Texas Hill Country with her husband and two kids, she joined the Austin Romance Writers of America, and signed with The Belcastro Agency.  Today she can be found cozied up to the computer escaping into a quirky world of tall tales, sexy, tight jean wearing cowboys, and a protagonist with a sharp-tongue quick enough to hang any man out to dry.

Email:jodilinton30@gmail.com

Website: http://jodilinton.com/

Blog: N/A

Twitter: @JodiLinton1

Facebook: http://facebook.com/JodiLintonAuthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7912388.Jodi_Linton

Newsletter: http://jodilinton.us3.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=4988983a2898e5154762e5bb7&id=2c98479e78

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41. Review: Romancing the Duke by Tessa Dare

 

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

I haven’t read many historical romances lately, so after a seeing a lot of positive buzz for Romancing the Duke, I decided it was time to read Tessa Dare’s latest release.  I have read a couple of her books, and have enjoyed each one.  I found this one utterly charming, just like the feisty protagonist, Izzy.  I raced through, and was sorry when I reached the last page.  I really need to hit up more of Tessa Dare’s backlist.

Izzy is desperate and impoverished, which prompted her to hire a coach and head off to the remote Gostley Castle after receiving a letter that one of her father’s benefactors has left her an inheritance.  Since her father’s death, she has been barely getting by.  He died suddenly, and Izzy learns, much to her dismay, that he never bothered to update his will, so all of his possessions have been willed to her cousin.  They have hated each other since childhood, and he’s absolutely crowing that she has been left with nothing.

Rather bitter that her life’s work has been for naught, she’s angry that her father neglected to see to her welfare.  She gave up everything to assist him with the serial he wrote for the newspaper, using her as the main character.  The Goodnight Tales garnered quite a following, even after his death, and Izzy is constantly asked about them by her father’s fans.  I loved this premise-she is even followed by cos-players who are so enchanted with the story that they dress up like their favorite characters and have formed clubs to celebrate The Goodnight Tales.  If it wasn’t for their popularity, she would probably have fared even worse after her father’s demise.

After arriving at the castle, she meets grouchy Ransom, the Duke of Rothbury.  He isn’t in the mood for visitors, and he promptly attempts to chase her away from his moldering castle.  Injured in a duel, he is suffering from a disfiguring scar, as well as blindness, from the misguided fight.  He isn’t happy to have a woman in his home, and he’s even less amused when he discovers that he no longer owns his family’s estate, and that Izzy has just inherited it.  Refusing to believe it, because he would never sell Gostley Castle, they come to an agreement.  While he was licking his wounds in private, he ignored his business correspondence.  Izzy agrees to help him go through the massive pile of letters, for a fee, to see how the castle was sold.  She needs the money to fix up the pile of crumbling stone, and he needs to discover who has been cheating him out of his money and property.

I found it difficult to sympathize with Ransom at first because he brought about his own misfortune; but Izzy – Izzy!  She is the victim of an unfortunate set of circumstances that left her with nothing but the few dresses in her travel bag.  Her father was a miserable caretaker for not ensuring that she was left with the means to provide for herself after his death.  Now that she has a roof over her head, she is going to fight tooth and nail to keep it.  I loved Izzy and her attitude, and how she refused to be cowed by the gruff, angry duke who refuses to give in gracefully and accept that Izzy is now the owner of the castle.

The secondary characters are also a treat, from the cos-playing fans of The Goodnight Tales, to Izzy’s new acquaintances at the castle.  Romancing the Duke made me laugh, held me spellbound, and even made me gasp with dismay when Izzy reads a fan letter to Ransom, and discovers that The Goodnight Tales is partly responsible for his turn of poor luck.  I hated to have the book come to an end, and I am now eagerly awaiting the next book in the series,  Say Yes to the Marquess.  In the meanwhile, I will have to revisit Spindle Cove; I have a few sitting unread on my Kindle!

Grade:  A-

Review copy provided by publisher

From Amazon:

n the first in Tessa Dare’s captivating Castles Ever After series, a mysterious fortress is the setting for an unlikely love . . .

As the daughter of a famed author, Isolde Ophelia Goodnight grew up on tales of brave knights and fair maidens. She never doubted romance would be in her future, too. The storybooks offered endless possibilities.

And as she grew older, Izzy crossed them off. One by one by one.

Ugly duckling turned swan?
Abducted by handsome highwayman?
Rescued from drudgery by charming prince?

No, no, and… Heh.

Now Izzy’s given up yearning for romance. She’ll settle for a roof over her head. What fairy tales are left over for an impoverished twenty-six year-old woman who’s never even been kissed?

This one.

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42. Release Day Spotlight and Giveaway-Turned by Virna DePaul

To celebrate today’s release of Virna DePaul’s Turned, I have compiled a handy list of places where you more than likely will NOT meet a hot vampire.  Please add additional places in the comments.  Thanks to the uber awesome peeps at Random House, I also have 5 copies up for grabs, so enter away!

Top 5 places you are guaranteed to NOT pick up a vampire:

Pool Party

Beach Volley Game

Church Service

Golf Tournament

Tanning Salon

Also avoid Italian restaurants, your local tent stake factory, and the Vatican.  I will bet dimes to dollars that you will never find a vampire hunk there.  Where else would you be wasting your time seeking your vampire soul mate?

Welcome to a mesmerizing world where vampires hide among humans. This centuries-old species has its own rules, code of conduct, and taboos. Only the FBI knows that vampires exist—and although the Bureau agrees to keep their secret, it also plots to give humans the upper hand.

Turning mortals into vampires is forbidden.

But there are creatures who refuse to play by the rules.

Ever since he was turned, FBI special agent Ty Duncan has had one mission: bring rogue vampires to justice. As a recruiter for Belladonna, a shadow agency formed to keep vampires in check, Ty must tap Ana Martin, a troubled ex–gang member and one of the few mortals who can infiltrate places that his kind and the law cannot. From their first encounter, Ty fights a hunger to make Ana his own.

When Ty claims to have information about Ana’s missing sister, Ana has no choice but to trust this captivating stranger who awakens her deepest desires. But as she and Ty climb the heights of pleasure and passion, an enemy is conspiring to destroy them both.

Can Ana help Ty find his humanity in a love that could heal them both, or will their passion lead them into a darkness impossible to escape?

Order your copy here:

Buy Links: Amazon, Amazon Kindle, Amazon Audio, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, iTunes

   

Virna DePaul is a former criminal prosecutor and bestselling author of steamy, suspenseful fiction.  Whether it’s vampires, a Para-Ops team, hot cops or swoon-worthy identical twin brothers, her stories center around complex individuals willing to overcome incredible odds for love.  She loves to hear from readers at www.virnadepaul.com | www.facebook.com/booksthatrock | www.twitter.com/virnadepaul

Giveaway!

Win a print copy of Turned by Virna DePaul.  US addresses only, please!

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43. Spotlight and Giveaway-One Night with an Earl by Jennifer Haymore!

ONE NIGHT WITH AN EARL by Jennifer Haymore (April 1, 2014; Forever Yours E-Novella; $1.99)

Beatrice Reece, Lady Fenwick, has retired from polite society. Everyone knows her late husband treated her abominably, and she simply cannot bear the whispers of the ton. But it’s the night of London’s premier masquerade ball-and Beatrice’s one chance to revel in anonymity. She hopes no one will recognize her beneath her mask, not even the sinfully sexy stranger across the room who holds her captive in his gaze . . .


Andrew Sinclair would know beautiful Beatrice anywhere from the gentle sway of her hips, the richness of her hair, and the lushness of her body. When he asks her to dance, the attraction is instant and all-consuming. The only woman he’s ever truly wanted is finally in his arms. But when the clock strikes twelve, will this one reckless night fade into the morning light?

Buy Links:

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About Jennifer Haymore:

As a child, Jennifer Haymore traveled the South Pacific with her family on their homebuilt sailboat. The months spent on the sometimes quiet, sometimes raging seas sparked her love of adventure and grand romance. Since then, she’s earned degrees in computer science and education and held various jobs ranging from bookselling to teaching inner-city children to acting, but she’s never stopped writing.
You can find Jennifer in Southern California trying to talk her husband into yet another trip to England, helping her three children with homework while brainstorming a new five-minute dinner menu, or crouched in a corner of the local bookstore writing her next novel. 

Social Media Links:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

Excerpt –

He reached down and took her right hand in his own. He raised their hands as he slipped his other arm around her waist. She pressed her palm against the back of his shoulder and suppressed a shudder. They were so very close, in such an intimate position. She wanted more, wished she could press herself even closer to him. “I haven’t danced a waltz in a very long time,” she breathed.

In fact, though she had learned how to waltz, she had never officially danced one during her Season because waltzes were considered highly improper for young ladies.

“The waltz is my favorite dance,” he told her.

“Why is that?” she asked, thinking that if he was to keep holding her like this the whole way through, it might just become her favorite dance, too.

“I do not enjoy touching a great many people,” he said quietly, his glittering blue eyes locked on hers. His arm tightened around her. “I prefer to have my hands on just one woman at a time. And that woman happens to be you.”

It felt like the air in the room—already thin and difficult to breathe—was sucked away. For a moment, she felt light-headed, unable to speak. Then she managed, “But don’t you dance the other dances as well?”

“Yes, when it is necessary for me to do so.”

“Why, if you don’t like them?”

“Because it is expected. I have made a study of societal expectations. The study has allowed me to become quite skilled at meeting them, Persephone.”

And with that, the waltz began. It was a lively dance, and Mr. Bull took full advantage, his steps bold, his turns wide, causing her pleats to stretch open and her skirt to billow around her.

She held on tight and let him take her on the ride. She didn’t think about the steps—she didn’t need to. She learned quickly that she must allow her feet to move as they would, and as long as she did so, they fell into a natural, perfect synchronicity.

He took her into a wide, spinning arc, and she couldn’t help it. She laughed in delight. She couldn’t remember ever feeling so free.

He squeezed her hand very tight for a moment. “You have the sweetest laugh I’ve ever heard,” he said, gazing down at her.

Still smiling, she looked into his eyes as he spun her around yet again. “Thank you.”

“I believe you enjoy waltzing with me, Persephone.”

“I have not enjoyed anything so much in a very long time,” she admitted. “I wish…”They danced around a group of couples, steering clear of a flurry of colorful skirts.

“What do you wish?” he asked, his voice low.

“I fear this might be our only opportunity to dance a waltz,” she said. “And I wish that wasn’t the case.”

“I hope it isn’t the case,” he said.

“But it must be. Because I fear Persephone’s time here is limited.”

Soon enough, she’d need to leave the colorful rebirth of spring and return to the underworld. But it was true—something about being with this man felt like she was blossoming after a very, very long time spent underground. She loved that feeling…and she didn’t want it to end.

“My time is limited.” She gazed at him straight on. “But I intend to enjoy every second while it lasts.”

This time, his lips were easier to read, his smile slow and seductive, and his eyes narrowing the slightest bit through the sockets of the mask.

“And I intend to enjoy every moment with you.”

She felt so free. Spinning, turning, waltzing, a handsome man holding her as if she were his most cherished possession, her dress a cloud of blue linen around her, her heart soaring. Tonight, after living so long a prisoner, she was breaking free of the cage Fenwicke had built around her.

For the first time since long before his death two years ago, she felt free.

And until a person has been a prisoner, they never understand how truly sweet freedom can be.

 

Don’t miss Jennifer’s May release!

THE SCOUNDREL’S SEDUCTION by Jennifer Haymore (May 27, 2014; Forever Mass Market; $8.00)

TEMPTATION KNOWS NO BOUNDS . . .
Undercover agent Sam Hawkins has devoted his life to protecting king and country. So when he receives orders to assassinate a ruthless traitor, he doesn’t question his mission. But Sam didn’t know his deed had a witness–the beautiful and mysterious betrayer’s wife. Now he has no choice but to take her as his prisoner-one he can neither trust . . . nor resist.
Élise, Lady Dunthorpe, will do anything to escape her powerful captor–including seducing him senseless. She didn’t know of her miserable husband’s crimes, but she has secrets of her own, secrets that threaten everything she holds dear. With his piercing dark eyes and gentle touch, Sam inflames Élise’s deepest desires, but how could she ever trust a man who won’t let her go? Caught between the crown he’s sworn to serve and the woman he’s come to love, Sam will risk his heart–and his very life–to keep her safe.

Buy Links:

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44. The Great Scots Blog Tour and Giveaway!

 

This morning I have a fun post featuring recent releases with Highlanders.  I have an excerpt from Paula Quinn’s latest book, as well as an interview with Sue-Ellen Welfonder.  Please enjoy, and be sure to enter the awesome giveaway!

 

About THE SEDUCTION OF MISS  AMELIA BELL

Edmund MacGregor will do anything to save Scotland from English rule-even kidnap Lady Amelia Bell for ransom. As the daughter of a duke and the chancellor’s betrothed, she’s the perfect pawn in this game. But from the moment he first lays eyes on his spirited captive, he can’t resist stealing a kiss.

Lady Amelia’s duty is to marry well, but that hasn’t stopped her from fantasizing about true love. So when a sexy Scot appears in her home, she’s beguiled. When he kidnaps her, she’s furious. Yet as Edmund introduces her to a world of passion beyond her wildest dreams, can she leave her family behind for this handsome Highlander? And will Edmund risk the only true home he’s ever known to capture the heart of this lovely lass?

Excerpt

What was left? Everything! Why was she saying all the wrong things today? Why were the two people she cared about forbidden? When he moved to turn away and leave her as Sarah had, she stopped him, taking hold of his arm. Forbidden had never stopped her before. She wouldn’t let it now.

He turned and she looked up into his despairing gaze. Did he care for her?

She reached her hand up to his face and watched his lids close as she touched him.

“There is something between us, Edmund. It draws me to ye even when every thought in my head is shouting to keep my distance fer our hearts’ sake. It tempts me to beg God that if this is a dream and I am still asleep at David’s feet in my uncle’s garden, never let me wake. I don’t want to contemplate

my life. I want to live it.”

She spread her thumb over his enticing mouth and inched closer toward it. “And all the pleasures of it. With ye. I know none of them and I want to learn with ye.”

He pulled her in the rest of the way and covered her mouth with a hot, hungry kiss. She answered, rising up on the tips of her toes and plunging her fingers into his locks, then pulling him down to answer her passion. She felt engulfed in flames. Her nipples burned, as did the crux between her legs. Her lungs, too, so she didn’t waste any breath speaking, except to say, “Take me inside.”

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About Paula Quinn

New York Times bestselling author Paula Quinn lives in New York with her three beautiful children, three over-protective chihuahuas, and a loud umbrella cockatoo. She loves to read romance and science fiction and has been writing since she was eleven.  She loves all things medieval, but it is her love for Scotland that pulls at her heartstrings.

Learn more here:

Website

Twitter

Facebook

 

[SEW] Thanks so much for hosting the tour today, Julie! It’s great to be here and you asked some clever questions. I love that, so thanks! (also loved seeing you’re a fellow animal lover)

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you for taking the time to drop by and answer my questions!   Describe yourself in five words or less.

[SEW] Loves Scotland, animals, books, quiet.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

[SEW] Water. (I live in most-times sunny and broiling southwest Florida)

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name three things on your desk right now?

[SEW]  Scottish rocks, an empty tea cup, and a framed picture of my beloved Jack Russell terrier, Em. (he’s sharing my desk chair, sleeping soundly behind me, snoring his little dog snores)

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you could trade places with anyone for just one day, who would you be?

[SEW] Anyone who lives in the wildest, most empty and remote corner of Scotland.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] You are lost in the mountains after a hiking trip gone terribly awry. Who do you want to rescue you?

[SEW] Grim Mackintosh, hero of ONCE UPON A HIGHLAND CHRISTMAS, Scandalous Scots 0.5. Grim also had a strong role in my Highland Warriors trilogy and makes continuing appearances throughout my new Scandalous Scots series. Here’s his description…

Tough and battle-hardened, Grim is a fearsome warrior. He’s formidable with both a sword and a Norse war ax, which he prefers. He’s also fierce-looking, being a big, powerfully-muscled man with smoke-gray eyes, wild black hair and his beard rings. For all his ferocity in battle, Grim is great-hearted and a good man. He is loyal, a staunch friend, and he loves animals.

I’d trust my life to Grim and I’m convinced he exists out there somewhere, just the other side of a swirl of Highland mist.

Julie, thank you again for hosting the tour. And thanks to all readers looking in today. Your participation makes these tours so much fun. Good luck in the drawing! I hope you’ll enjoy TO LOVE A HIGHLANDER.

Visit me online at:

www.welfonder.com

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SE’s Book Info Only Blog: http://tartaninkafterhours.wordpress.com

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Twitter: @se_welfonder

Amazon Author Central: https://www.amazon.com/author/sueellenwelfonder

 

About TO LOVE A HIGHLANDER
As one of the bastards born to the Stirling court, Sorley the Hawk has never known his mother or father. It’s a burning quest he has devoted himself to uncovering at any cost. But as a roguish warrior who serves at the pleasure of the King, his prowess-both on the battlefield and in his bedchamber-is legendary. So when a flame-haired Highland lass sneaks into his quarters with a tantalizing proposition, he can’t resist taking her up on her offer .

Lady Mirabelle MacLaren will do anything to keep from marrying her odious suitor, even sully her own good name. And who better to despoil her than his sworn enemy, the one they call “Hawk?” As they set about the enjoyable task of ruining her reputation, Hawk and Mirabelle soon learn that rebellion never tasted so sweet.

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About Sue-Ellen Welfonder

Sue-Ellen Welfonder is a Scotophile whose burning wish to make frequent trips to the land of her dreams led her to a twenty-year career with the airlines.
Now a full-time writer, she’s quick to admit that she much prefers wielding a pen to pushing tea and coffee. She makes annual visits to Scotland, insisting they are a necessity, as each trip gives her inspiration for new books.
Proud of her own Hebridean ancestry, she belongs to two clan societies: the MacFie Clan Society and the Clan MacAlpine Society. In addition to Scotland, her greatest passions are medieval history, the paranormal, and dogs. She never watches television, loves haggis, and writes at a 450-year-old desk that once stood in a Bavarian castle.
Sue-Ellen is married and currently resides with her husband and Jack Russell terrier in Florida.
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45. Spotlight and Giveaway–Wolf’s Strength by Ambrielle Kirk

Wolf’s Strength

Caedmon Wolves, #5

Tension grows between old rivals.

Cold-blooded murder sparks a feud between rivals that could lead to the deadliest civil war in Pack history. Alpha Devin Caedmon and his council are forced to risk all that is precious to protect their bloodline. Tristan Arnou, Caedmon’s rival, isn’t the only force trying to tear down the unity holding them together. The source of the threats must be eliminated before their entire race is destroyed.

Forbidden love burns like a wildfire.

There is one woman who Blake DeLuca loves more than anything else. Naomi Valentine. Despite the escalating battle and power struggles between their respective packs, the erotic fire between these two lovers has yet to be extinguished. Naomi’s heart belongs to Blake, but her allegiance lies with Arnou. She’s left with two choices: Assume her duty or accept Blake’s eternal bond?

In Wolf’s Strength, secrets are exposed and memories that should have been buried have resurfaced. The game of deception is a deadly one. There can be no peace until the bloodshed ends.

AVAILABLE NOW

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Wolfs-Strength-Caedmon-Wolves-Ambrielle-ebook/dp/B00IWB1ECM/

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wolfs-strength-ambrielle-kirk/1118887926

ARe: https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-wolf039sstrength-1436549-178.html

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Multi-published author Ambrielle Kirk writes erotic, paranormal romance, and urban fantasy. Ambrielle lives in Atlanta, GA where she works in the accounting and finance industry. She holds a Master’s Degree in Accounting. Since graduation she’s worked in the public and private accounting sectors. She is the wife of a loving husband, and the mother of a beautiful girl. She works and writes full-time.  A bestselling author in several sub-genres at ARe and Amazon, she has also earned a 2012 Swirl Award in the paranormal category. She’s a PAN member of RWA, FF&P special interest chapter of RWA, and co-founder and treasurer of Cultural, Interracial, and Multicultural special interest chapter of RWA. Ambrielle Kirk is also an admin at the blog, IRMC Books.

Connect with Ambrielle:

Webpage http://ambriellekirk.com

Blog http://ambriellekirk.com/blog.html

Facebook Personal Page https://www.facebook.com/ambrielle.kirk.9

Facebook Fan Page https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAmbrielleKirk

Twitter https://twitter.com/AmbrielleKirk

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/ambriellekirk

Excerpt

“Stop the car. Someone’s in trouble.”

Blake DeLuca sat straight up in the passenger side seat with each one his senses heightened in alarm. The sharp scream of the woman echoed in his head just like it had done across the evening atmosphere just moments early.

The scream was a cry for help and it sounded like someone was in despair.

“You heard it too?” Dawson asked, as he swerved into an empty lot and brought the Maserati to a screeching halt.

Blake’s body lurched forward from the blunt maneuver, but he didn’t waste a moment’s notice. He was out of the car in three seconds flat, rushing toward the sounds of scuffling in the alley. His wolf was just below the surface of his skin urging him toward the incident. Plus, they were in unmarked territory where there was sure to be human eyes everywhere even at this odd hour of the evening. Dusk had just fallen, but that didn’t mean every human was all cozy in their homes.

Dawson was right behind him, his running footsteps crunching the gravel and broken sidewalk with determination.

With their keen sense of smell, it didn’t take them long to find the scene of the crime. Blake stopped short of revealing their arrival too soon, keeping his body positioned behind the shadow of a long dumpster. The woman screamed again, but louder this time.

There were three of them. The intricate pattern inked on the left shoulder designated them as belonging to the Other clan.

They had a Caedmon female backed into a darkened alleyway. A man lay dead on the pavement next to them. The deep gaping slit on his neck and the pool of blood draining from his throat evidenced that a cut to the jugular was a cause of death, if not the main one. What little clothing the female wore were tattered and torn about her body. The dead male didn’t look that presentable either. Anyone could tell they’d put up a fight and as a result a man had paid with his life.

“We just wanted to have some fun with you, that’s all,” one of the men from the Other clan taunted. He and the others moved closer and closer to the frightened woman. “Your friend there shouldn’t have stuck his snout where it doesn’t belong.”

One of the men kicked the dead body and grinned. “He’s dead. Now we can play some more.”

Blake emerged from the shadows with rage and curiosity running through his system.

“Help!” The woman cried out as she finally noticed he and Dawson folding in behind the Other clan.

The biggest one swung around and his gaze focused on the new threat. His irises were a murky dark gray which was very unusual for someone of the Other clan. Their eyes usually sparked a bright silver, especially when they were provoked and up to no good. But this man’s powers were literally seething from his pores, kind of like a Caedmon’s would do, but in far less vivid colors. Although Others were the human branch of Caedmon kind, they couldn’t shift and their abilities and powers were reduced. Only through the wolf genes were the powers and Caedmon spirit more potent.

“Look what else we got,” the biggest one said through clenched teeth. “More mutts. I wonder if they’re even worth earning a dull blade. The last one fell quickly–like a limp rodent.” He held up his knife, demonstrating the sharpness by pressing a pointer finger to the tip.

Dawson growled next to him. ‘Let me do this one in.’

The statement came to Blake through projection. After claiming the lost relics and on the night of the delegation, this gift, along with others, was afforded to all six members of the Council. Thought projection was something that was only shared among mates and close siblings, so to have something this rare in common with his fellow Council members who were like brothers to him was a precious gift.

‘But there’s three of them.’ Blake projected back. ‘The one with the most kills wins.’

‘Game on.’

Blake pointed to the dead Caedmon on the ground. “Why is this man dead?”

“For the same reason you will be lying dead next to him,” one replied, taking a step forward to show his seriousness. “Not being able to mind his own business.”

“Westcott was trying to help me!” The woman blurted out, then shrank back into the building when the biggest one, presumably the leader, turned on her.

“Shut up, tramp!” he hissed at her and rushed her with the knife. “You were asking for it. I’ll save you for last…after I get through with these scumbags.”

Blake acted quickly, his wolf on the surface egging him on. He reached the offending male with lightning speed, grabbing him tight around the wrist. His determination was made clear as he snapped the offender’s carpal bone in two. “Now that’s no way to talk to a lady.”

He hollered in pain and dropped the knife.

There was some scuffling behind them and Blake figured that Dawson had got into it with the other two. Dawson had just reached the age when a young male wolf was most aggressive. So Blake was almost certain that he would have lured them into a fight one way or the other.

His own opponent caught him off guard, throwing a punch with his other fist. It missed Blake’s jaw by only a centimeter.

Blake shoved the big brute hard into the stone wall.

When the body hit, spittle and sweat flew away from his neck and face. He stumbled away from the building, shaking off what was likely the result of being disoriented from the hit. The brute appeared to give up but then he sprang back up with a second knife, slinging it in the air at him.

The blade caught Blake in the upper forearm. He bit his bottom lip and snatched the thing out. Blood pulsed from the wound down his arms through to his hand. He dug his fingers into his palms while the blood rage gathered in his fists.

Blake’s eyes glazed over and he began seeing everything in a vivid red, but things were clearer, nonetheless. His body shuddered as he fought down his wolf, angry and ready to emerge. There was no subduing this animal any longer. The wolf was his other half, they completed each other, and they both hungered for revenge.

Blake’s canines ripped violently from his gums.

He heard a squeak and discovered that the woman was still standing there, unmoving and shocked from what she was seeing. He caught her gaze and held it.

“Run. Never come back in unmarked territory again,” he said to her.

She wasted no time gathering up her ripped skirt and running out of the alley.

“I’ll carve you,” his opponent screamed. “I’ll slice your throat just like your dead Doctor there.” His fingers shook as he pointed.

“Will that be before or after I stuff your mouth with your own guts?”

The next thing the coward pulled out from behind his back was a pistol.

Blake ducked out of the pathway of the first bullet. Within seconds his bones snapped and molded. His skin grew hot and stretched until he became the wolf. But it wasn’t he who earned the first kill. Dawson had already ripped into the throat of one.

An enemy’s treachery fueled the wolf’s rage. The need for revenge of a murdered brethren harkened. As a Council member, he had pledged long ago to protect his people by any and all means necessary. Above all else, he wasn’t ready to die tonight–not by any man’s hand and not by a gun.

The third and fourth bullet came too close to his head and he sprang into action. He leapt into the air, hurling himself at the offender.

His claws dug into a meaty chest as he drove the man’s body into the ground on his back. The wolf offered very little mercy when it came to cold blooded murderers.

Blood rushed into Blake’s mouth as he tore into the man’s stomach, pulling out a mass of guts and tossing them in heaps on the ground. This murderer’s screams were too loud. The only mercy the wolf afforded that evening was putting him out of his misery by ripping into his throat to end it all.

After the kill, Blake’s wolf spun around ready for more, but Dawson’s wolf had just taken down the last man.

They shifted back into their human forms almost at the same time, heaving in and out with deep raged breaths trying to recover. Dawson stumbled to the opposite side of the wall, clutching his side.

Blake rushed over to him. “Were you hit?”

He held up his palm. “Dude, I’m fine. The bullet isn’t deep. I got this.”

Dawson was brother to the Alpha, son to a male descending from the original line of Caedmon ancestors. Despite his youth, Dawson was probably ten times more powerful than Blake was. In a matter of seconds, Dawson had expelled the bullet on his own and succeeded in stopping the blood leakage.

Blake pried a pistol from one of the dead man’s cold fingers. He held it up to the light from the moon. “Just as I thought. This gun is hot. The serial number has been stripped. Bullets are probably untraceable too.” He dumped the remaining bullets from the clip into his palm.

Dawson picked up a shell from the ground and pocketed it. “They popped off too many rounds during the scuffle. Chances that someone nearby heard are high. Let’s get out of here.”

They bent together to pick up the dead Caedmon from the pavement. When they reached the car again, they popped the trunk and slid him inside.

“I’ll drive this time.” Blake gestured to his wounded side. “You need time to mend.” He pulled his cell phone out of his jacket pocket and hit the speed dial key then the number 9. His call was answered promptly.

“M-9.”

“Max, we need another clean up,” Blake replied, as he slid into the driver’s side seat.

Max blurted out an expletive on the other end. “This shit is getting serious, ain’t it?”

“Roger that.”

TOUR GIVEAWAY:

GRAND PRIZE: $25 egiftcard to Amazon, B&N, or ARe

RUNNERS-UP: 2 runners up get to select an eBook title from Ambrielle’s backlist

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46. Monday Mishmash 3/31/14


Happy Monday! Here's my mishmash of thoughts:
  1. Family Expo  I'll be at the Family Expo on Sunday the 6th from noon to 3pm talking about writing and displaying my books. The Expo is held at East Stroudsburg High School South if you're in the area.
  2. Edits  I'm expecting edits this week for Perfect For You, my upcoming Ashelyn Drake YA contemporary romance. I'm excited!
  3. Author Events  April is a busy month for me. I have three author events scheduled.
  4. Reading  I'm reading Insurgent right now. I loved Divergent, but I'm not as in love Insurgent just yet. I'm enjoying it, but not quite as much as book one.
  5. Need To Read  Tomorrow is the first Need To Read post on YA Bound. Need To Read is a new meme, posted on the first Tuesday of each month, that highlights books releasing that month. These are the books we've waited for and now we can read them. Feel free to grab the button and post your Need To Read books.

That's it for me. What's on your mind today?


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47. Spotlight and Giveaway-Brazen March Releases!


If you like your heroes hot, the sex hotter, and a swoon-worthy romance to swoop in and save your happily ever after, Brazen has the story for you. Sinfully sexy soldiers. Alpha cops who demand control. Sweet guys with a naughty side in the bedroom. At Brazen, they’ve got the hero destined to melt your… heart. Visit the Entangled website, the Brazen Blog, follow them on Twitter, Like their Facebook page, and follow them on Pinterest.



Introducing Brazen’s March 31st releases:


RA_300
Friends with benefits was never the plan…

Melanie Jacobs’s chances for having a family are shrinking with every passing day. Her only comfort is her best friend, sexy cowboy Colton Freeze, but when a heated argument between them turns into an even hotter kiss, the boundaries of their friendship are blurred. But will their new friends-with-sexy-benefits arrangement destroy everything they once shared?

Find out more! 

Special $0.99 Introductory Price!

 






Also, don’t miss these three great novellas from our prior Halloween Anthology, now available individually for the first time!

PWT_300 SMR_1600 WG_300
Possession is nine-tenths of the law. And she belongs to him. 


He’s not who she thinks, and he has seduction plans of his own…


When a battle of wills becomes a game of lust, one wrong move could be fatal. 


Find out more! Find out more! Find out more!

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48. Novella Review: The Art of Goodbye by Gwendolyn Heasely

I really enjoyed Where I Belong, so I was eager to catch up with Corrinne and see what she’s been doing since her days in Broken Spoke, Texas.  The Art of Goodbye takes place over the evening before she leaves for college, with brief flashbacks to the spring, when she visited Broken Spoke to attend prom with her new friends.  That evening didn’t go quite as she had planned, so Corrinne has carefully crafted a schedule of events to celebrate her last night in New York City.  She is on a rigid time table, and when these plans don’t go as expected, either, she learns a valuable lesson.  There is no art to saying goodbye, and sometimes, things just happen.  Trying to control every situation to make a perfect memory isn’t possible and it’s better to just go with the flow.

 

When I started reading this novella, I was so disappointed with Corrinne.  It seems as though she had completely reverted back to her old overindulged, spoiled self.  Her evening is all about her, her, her.  Forget what the other participants in her plans want.  She has been planning this night all summer, and things are going to go according to her schedule.  Period.

Only the night doesn’t go at all like she planned.  Bensen, her boyfriend with an expiration date, wants to extend their relationship.  She’s taken aback by his suggestion, because she thought they had an agreement.  They would have fun during the summer, and then move on, with no hurt feelings, when they both headed off to college.  A long distance relationship, especially with Bensen, just isn’t in her future.  I really felt bad for Bensen, as Corrinne made it painfully clear that their relationship didn’t mean half as much to her as it did to him.

To further throw her perfect evening out of whack, Corrinne runs into Bubby, not once but twice.  She is still smarting about how prom night ended between them, and all of her plans for this evening are driven by the need to be in control now, since everything was totally out of control then.  Because of that night, she has blown the significance of this evening so far out of proportion that it would be virtually impossible for her not to feel let down.

As the night continued to snowball, and Corrinne continued to see her plans derailed, she started to take a close look at herself and how she was acting.  She was partly responsible for the disastrous outcome after prom, and she’s finally willing to own up to her role in that fiasco.  She has been blaming Bubby for their falling out, when in reality, she had just as much to do with their misunderstanding as he did.  I thought her childish behavior was mostly responsible, and I kept hoping that she would eventually man up to her own mistakes, instead of just dumping everything into Bubby’s lap.

She does redeem herself at the end, after realizing that there is no perfect moment.  This allows her to reflect on her behavior, and put her priorities into perspective.   While I was nervous about the resolution, I was happy to see that Corrinne does get a happily ever after, despite it being somewhat unrealistic. 

Fans of Where I Belong will enjoy spending more time with Corrinne.  I think this novella would be a let down for readers who haven’t read the book yet, so do yourself a favor and give Where I Belong a spin, too. 

About the book:

The heroine of Where I Belong is back in The Art of Goodbye, a romantic digital original novella about first loves and second chances.

It’s Corrinne Corcoran’s last night in town before heading off to college, and she’s determined it’ll be the most epic night ever. She’s planned every detail of each hour of the night, from what dresses she’ll wear, to what parties she’ll hit, to which of her best friends will be with her. But Corrinne’s perfect plan for her last night in New York goes awry when she runs into a ghost from her past, and the boy she’s never been able to forget—her ex-boyfriend, Bubby, from Broken Spoke. And Corrinne starts to wonder if her expertly planned goodbye to New York City was as perfect as it seemed. . . . Set over the twelve-hour period before Corrinne sets off for college, The Art of Goodbye will make you believe that true love can find you when you’re least expecting it . . . again.

HarperTeen Impulse is a digital imprint focused on young adult short stories and novellas, with new releases the first Tuesday of each month.

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49. Spotlight and Excerpt–Secrets of a Bollywood Marriage by Susanna Carr

 

 

This morning I have an excerpt from Susanna Carr’s latest release, Secrets of a Bollywood Marriage.  I have a fondness for Bollywood movies, so this book immediately hit my TBR pile.

Excerpt: 

Tina walked to the center of the large entryway and stared at the sight before her. As she inhaled the stench of alcohol, sweat and cigarette smoke, she recognized a few of the guests. They were celebrities and actors whose faces graced billboards and movie posters. They still looked gorgeous, their damp hair and clothes plastered to their skin, as they moved feverishly to the heavy beat of the drums.

She narrowed her eyes and watched as two guests competed in a drinking game at the bar. So this was how her husband had spent his days while she was away. After reading the weeks-old tabloid, it shouldn’t surprise her.

Tina wondered what the occasion was for the party. It had to be about business. The moment Dev was born he had been destined to reign this world. But it was not enough to take his rightful place at the top. He was driven to succeed, conquer new territories and gain incredible power. Money was secondary to this man yet every moment of Dev’s day was consumed with business.

Well, almost every moment. She had been the exception. Once she thought that the aberration meant he loved her. Now she knew differently.

Tina continued to walk through the house. She wondered if he would claim that it was her welcome-back party. He was bold enough to try. And why not? He could lie and break promises without suffering the consequences. Dev was untouchable.

But her return had been impulsive. She hadn’t known that she was coming back until yesterday. Now she wondered if that had been the wrong decision. Tina bit the inside of her lip as she walked further away from the main entrance. Her goal was to show that she was no longer vulnerable. That she was stronger than her husband could imagine.

Tina hesitated before she moved deeper into the house. Once she had felt safe and comfortable here. She had even considered it her home. Now she knew it had been an illusion. Instead of being protected, she had ultimately been stripped of her power and freedom. Her fingers flexed nervously against her purse strap as she looked around, trying to remember where the closest exit was located.

She heard a group of people clapping and chanting loudly in the direction of the billiards room. Tina pivoted and marched to the back of the house, certain that her husband would be there. With his stunning looks, raw masculinity and star power, Dev was always the center of attention.

Tina rolled her eyes when she recognized the song the men were chanting. It had been from Dev’s first hit movie. She had seen it countless times but she knew her husband was privately critical of his performance in it. He wouldn’t play the song unless it was a special request for someone important.

She suddenly remembered the scene also included an actress. Would he be dancing with a partner? A certain ingénue? Bile burned in her stomach at the thought, but Tina kept moving. She needed to see this herself and not rely on other sources. She needed to know.

Tina entered the billiards room unnoticed. She was invisible in this brand-name crowd. Her crumpled tunic and baggy jeans didn’t cause one head to turn. The only time the Hindi film elite noticed her was when she was on the arm of her husband.

Everyone was facing the center of the room, jumping up and down with their arms outstretched as they sang. She stumbled to a halt when she heard Dev’s bold laughter. The sound pierced her heart.

He sounded…carefree. Happy. Tina staggered back as the realization hit her like a fierce blow. How could he be like this after everything that had happened? Didn’t he feel anything? Or was it just a relief to him?

Tina hunched her shoulders. Perhaps it was a bad idea to return for one final confrontation. She had always suspected that she had been a burden to Dev. She’d thought they had been desperately in love, but now she realized he had felt obligated to marry her. It hadn’t helped that his parents had disapproved of the match. Of her.

Who could blame them? She was not worthy of him. His parents were Bollywood legends and she was from the slums. Dev had given up his parents’ grand plans and eventually he’d given up on her.

Everyone had known it was bound to happen, believing she’d tricked him into marriage. They confused her with the bad-girl roles she had in those low-budget masala films. Perhaps Dev did, too. It had soon become obvious that she wasn’t the brazen and sexy woman of his dreams. Dev had been ready to return to his playboy ways and he wasn’t going to let a wife stop him.

And she wasn’t going to let him have any more power over her. Determined to get this over with, Tina took a shaky breath and plunged into the crowd. She stopped, her heart lurching when she saw Dev standing alone in the center of the circle. He held the guests captive as he performed the intricate dance step with effortless grace.

Tina’s chest squeezed tight. Dev Arjun. Her first love. Her biggest mistake.

She stared breathlessly at her husband, unable to look away. Dev was lean and muscular thanks to years of training for his popular action adventure movies. Tina shivered as she remembered how his strong and athletic build felt under her fingertips. His golden skin had been warm and rough and she had enjoyed watching his rock-hard abdomen clench as she’d teased him.

She flushed, her skin tingling, as she watched Dev finish the iconic dance, encouraging the others to follow along. Yet no one could match his confident swagger or his bold and precise moves.

As he raised his hands up like a conquering hero, Dev appeared taller than she remembered. Larger than life. Tina noticed how his dark shirt couldn’t hide his broad chest and how his jeans encased his powerful thighs.

She wished she wasn’t aware of how good he looked, but this was a man in the prime of his life. His strength and vitality came off him in waves. In the past she had yearned to have those powerful arms encircle her. Now she knew to keep her distance.

As his audience roared with their approval, Tina dragged her gaze to Dev’s face. Only then did she notice the darker shadows and the deeper lines around his eyes. His angular features were harsh and mesmerizing. He looked older. Harder.

Dev bowed before he accepted a drink from one of his friends. He tilted his head back and her gaze locked with his. Dev froze. He held the glass midway as his eyes widened. Tina felt his shock quiver in the air.

“Tina?”

His husky question scraped at her taut nerves. She wanted to melt back into the protection of the crowd. She wanted to run. She wasn’t ready for this. She wasn’t ready for him. But it was too late.

The room went silent. She couldn’t speak, couldn’t move, as Dev tossed down his drink and pounced. He moved with a swiftness that stole her breath. Her throat tightened as her heart thumped against her ribs. She suddenly felt cold as her muscles locked violently.

Dev captured her in his arms and gathered her tightly against him. She was trapped. She inhaled his spicy scent and tears sprang in the corner of her eyes as their most intimate memories assailed her.

Tina had imagined how she would act when she was finally in the same room as Dev. This was not part of the plan. She was supposed to be aloof. Icy cold. Untouched. Just like he had been during the last days they were together. This was the moment when she would take back her power and make her demands.

Instead, she remained silent as he slid his large fingers through her short hair. She stared at him as he firmly tilted her head back. Her mouth trembled with anticipation. She knew he was going to claim her with a hard and possessive kiss.

About the book:

After the glitter settles… 

Tina Sharma and Dev Arjun’s whirlwind romance made them Bollywood royalty, but beneath the glitz and glamour there’s trouble—Tina is about to demand a divorce! 

But Dev won’t give in without a fight, so he proposes a deal: play the dutiful wife for two months, then he’ll let her go. Tina is furious! He clearly regrets their shotgun wedding, so why stay together a day longer? But it isn’t the days she should be worried about…. 

As Dev turns up the heat, Tina may just find herself wishing for a lifetime of pleasure with her devilishly delicious husband!

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50. Spotlight and Giveaway – Seducing Mr. Right by Rebecca Rose

 

SEDUCING MR. RIGHT by Rebecca Rose (April 1, 2014; Forever Yours E-Book; $2.99)

Only love can heal his wounds . . .

Gunnery Sergeant Jake Sanders made it through the war in Afghanistan, but he’s struggling to survive the peace at home. Still scarred by his experiences overseas, Jake now spends most of his time working out and tending to his brother’s bar and grill. He’s not looking for a girlfriend and avoids intimate relationships . . . until he meets the bar’s gorgeous new manager.


Ex-ballerina Sophie Agnés couldn’t take her eyes off Jake the moment she saw him—he was, after all, sleeping half-naked in her new office when she arrived on her first day of work. The chemistry between them is immediate, and soon it’s not clear who is seducing whom. But Sophie fears that something is keeping Jake from opening his heart to her. And a man with dark secrets may not be the right man for her after all.

About the author:

Once Rebecca Rose picked up her first romance novel she knew her destiny was typed on those pages. She lives to find romance in ordinary life doing everyday things, by believing you just need to be conscious enough to look for it.  While being slightly dyslexic has created some challenges for her, she feels compelled to write about the characters living in her head.
With multiple books out, she is a full-time writer with a nagging muse who even talks obsessively in the car. That is of course, when the voice can get a word in edgewise with her three children and husband of 17 years.

Social Media Links:

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Buy Links:

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Excerpt -

She took the heaping spoon of ice cream with her to the large picture window which faced the front of her home. The street was quiet, except for the taxi dropping some guy off. She nibbled on the dessert, appreciating every spoonful, when the stranger below turned into the street light.

“You have got to be kidding me.” In a rush, Sophie tossed her spoon on the counter and raced down the flight of stairs to the street. The buzzard rang just as she hit the last step. Joy swelled inside of her. Anticipation made her stumble with the locks. She opened the door and found the only person on this earth she wanted to see standing there.

“Jake, what are you doing here?”

“I needed to see you.” He stroked her cheek with his thumb and gave her a little smile, “Can I come in?”

Sophie leaned against the door jam and crossed her arms. “What makes you think I want to let you in?” she joked. Even in the dim of her hall light, Sophie could see the flush creep up his neck.

“Oh…I don’t know. If you want me to go, I will.” He bit his lower lip and Sophie felt hers twitch.

“You’re far too cute. A powerhouse of a man, with a marshmallow heart. I can’t believe you’d give up so easily? I was only kidding.”

Jake stepped forward when she fisted the material of his shirt and started to pull him in. For the first time ever, Sophie felt anticipation’s powerful grip. Her breath hitched, her body pulsed and the primal need to be with him, to love him, to share secret moments with him, washed over her. The ache in her heart made her head feel faint and mind giddy. For this wasn’t the beginning of a teenage crush, but the sensation of two apposed worlds pulled together with such force, the inevitable collision would be catastrophic to anyone in denial. She couldn’t calm her nerves from prickling in exhilaration.

“Oh, I wasn’t going to give up that easily,” Jake told her. His stare transfixed Sophie as he stepped into the front entryway then kicked the door shut behind him.

“You’ve been drinking.” Her voice shook, not from fear, but from her racing heart and sexually-charged body.

“Not as much as you think.” He pinned her against the wall, grasped her ass and hiked her up so she’d wrap her legs around his waist. “Four beers to be exact and only to convince myself not to come here.”

“I want you too, Jake. Please.” At her plead, he grasped the silk rope and nightie underneath, then tore. She cried out as Jake’s mouth and teeth assaulted her breasts.

“Good God, you’re built.”

“I’m all yours.” Fisting her hands in his hair he brought his mouth to hers. Their bodies heated the small entryway and Jake made a move for the stairs.

“Up, right?”

“Yea. Down the hall, bedroom on the left.” She pulled his shirt over his head then began a journey over his chest with her mouth. When she came to one of his nipples, Sophie bit. His body reacted by tensing under her mouth.

“Fuck it, honey. We’re not going to make it.”

Only a few steps up, he laid her on them. His mouth scorched her, his hands possessed her, and his greed for more seemed unquenchable. He tore the rest of her night clothes open. Then in one swift move, pulled her panties off. She felt the searing kisses start at her ankle and hastily move their way up.

“I just want to devour you, Sophie. You’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen.” His hands moved to her legs then opened them to taste. His tongue and fingers worked her body to a fury and she gripped the stairs to keep from bucking off. “You taste incredible.”

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