What is JacketFlap

  • JacketFlap connects you to the work of more than 200,000 authors, illustrators, publishers and other creators of books for Children and Young Adults. The site is updated daily with information about every book, author, illustrator, and publisher in the children's / young adult book industry. Members include published authors and illustrators, librarians, agents, editors, publicists, booksellers, publishers and fans.
    Join now (it's free).

Sort Blog Posts

Sort Posts by:

  • in
    from   

Suggest a Blog

Enter a Blog's Feed URL below and click Submit:

Most Commented Posts

In the past 7 days

Recent Posts

(tagged with 'romance')

Recent Comments

JacketFlap Sponsors

Spread the word about books.
Put this Widget on your blog!
  • Powered by JacketFlap.com

Are you a book Publisher?
Learn about Widgets now!

Advertise on JacketFlap

MyJacketFlap Blogs

  • Login or Register for free to create your own customized page of blog posts from your favorite blogs. You can also add blogs by clicking the "Add to MyJacketFlap" links next to the blog name in each post.

Blog Posts by Date

Click days in this calendar to see posts by day or month
new posts in all blogs
Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: romance, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 26 - 50 of 1,940
26. Review: A Cowboy’s Christmas Promise by Maggie McGinnis

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

I decided to read A Cowboy’s Christmas Promise  because both protagonists are veterinarians.  Hayley is a big city vet, tending to pampered show cats, while Daniel is a large animal vet in rural Montana.  Hayley really wanted to be an equine vet, but obligations to her uncle changed her focus to small animals instead.  One of the things I enjoyed about the book was Hayley’s enthusiasm for Daniel’s line of work.  He’s an overworked vet, the only animal caregiver for hundreds of miles.  Even though he has two young daughters, he finds solace in his busy workload.  Since the death of his wife, he’s been trying to cope with his grief and be a loving father, but there are times when he’s overwhelmed juggling his work and home schedules.

Hayley is a love ‘em and leave ‘em kind of girl; she has no intentions of ever settling down, and her longest relationship lasted a record two months.  Visiting Montana for her friend’s wedding (Kyla from Accidental Cowgirl), Hayley realizes that she needs to stay far, far away from Daniel.  Daniel doesn’t do casual, and Hayley doesn’t trust enough in love to risk a commitment.  Daniel is also fighting with his mother-in-law over custody of the girls, and it’s obvious that she disapproves of both Daniel’s work and the sudden appearance of Hayley in his life.

I loved the humor, and immediately wanted to read the first book in the series (which is in my Terrifying Tower of TBR, so there are hopes that I will get to it yet!).  The setting was also a huge plus, as was Daniel’s work.  I am fascinated when the vets come out to the barn, and like to watch them work on the horses, as well as ask questions about the procedures they are performing.  There’s a feeling of that in the book, as Hayley pitches in to assist with the equine care.  She desperately comes to love Montana, treating larger animals, and Daniel and the girls, but she doesn’t see a way to leave her own practice in Boston to take a chance on a permanent relationships with Daniel.

After she returns home from her vacation, she and Daniel stay in contact, calling and Skyping.  This part of the story felt very real, too.  Their long-distance relationship blossoms into something much deeper than friendship, and I found that their period of separation strengthened their ties to each other.  They really listened to what the other said, and used the information gained to do thoughtful things.  Usually I’m bored when the protagonists are apart, but that was never a complaint here.

Though Christmas plays a part in the story, it isn’t until the end of the book.  I mention this because when I told my mom how much I enjoyed A Cowboy’s Christmas Promise, she said that she didn’t care for holiday themed books.  Most of the story takes place during Hayley’s summer vacation, so even if you don’t like Christmas reads, download the sample from Amazon and give this a try.  I don’t think you’ll be sorry.

Grade:  B+

Review copy provided by publisher

From Amazon:

In a captivating novel spiced with holiday magic—perfect for fans of Rachel Gibson, Susan Mallery, and Molly O’Keefe—a rugged Montana man mends a Northeast girl’s jaded heart.

Boston veterinarian Hayley Scampini tends the city’s pampered pets but dreams of the rural life of a country vet. She’s single and determined to stay that way, convinced that love isn’t permanent enough to trust. Then a vacation to the Whisper Creek dude ranch introduces her to Daniel McKee, a sexy single dad who runs the kind of veterinary practice she aspires to—and rattles her conviction to keep men at a distance.

Managing a thriving practice, coping with the loss of his wife, and fighting a custody battle with his in-laws over his twin daughters, Daniel couldn’t be more overwhelmed. Hayley is a godsend, accompanying him in the field and winning over his girls. It doesn’t take Daniel long to realize he’s falling for this woman, hard and fast. So before Hayley returns to Boston, he extracts a promise: that she will return to Whisper Creek for Christmas. It’s the perfect time and place to show Hayley that the promise of a beautiful life together is something she can believe in.

The post Review: A Cowboy’s Christmas Promise by Maggie McGinnis appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
27. Spotlight and Giveaway: Just for Christmas Night by Lisa Marie Perry

I enjoyed Midnight Games, the 2nd book in the Blue Dynasty series, so I’m happy to share an excerpt and giveaway for Just for Christmas Night by Lisa Marie Perry.

 
Enter to Win
$10.00 Amazon or B&N Gift Card
and
Signed Copy of JUST FOR CHRISTMAS NIGHT
 

 
A red-hot holiday

Pro football publicist Martha Blue has something to prove. To protect the image of the Las Vegas Slayers—and stay employed— she has to shed her party-girl reputation. Fast! So no more mistakes. No further scandals. And absolutely no falling for the one man who can give her everything she wants…and nothing of what she needs.
 
Danger and desire never mixed well for undefeated prizefighter Joaquin Ryder. A friend of the Blue family, he’s a man who knows his boundaries…boundaries he has secretly crossed only once before. Now that he’s back in Sin City to train for the biggest fight of his career, he can’t afford to let a sexy distraction like Martha put him against the ropes. Revisiting their sizzling past is something he isn’t willing to risk—until a steamy Yuletide encounter, where for just one night, they’ll surrender completely….


BUY NOW
 
 
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
 
 
Lisa Marie Perry encounters difficult fictional men and women on a daily basis. She writes contemporary romance fiction with plenty of sizzle, energy and depth. Flawed, problematic, damaged characters are welcome. Her tales feature exciting multicultural mash-ups, sexy guy-next-door heroes and powerful larger-than-life alphas who are brought to their knees by the love of complicated women.

According to Lisa Marie, an imagination’s a terrible thing to ignore. So is a good cappuccino. After years of college, customer service gigs and a career in caregiving, she at last gave in to buying an espresso machine and writing to her imagination’s desire. She lives in America’s heartland and she has every intention of making the Colorado mountains her new stomping grounds. She drives a truck, enjoys indie rock, collects Medieval literature, watches too many comedies, has a not-so-secret love for lace and adores rugged men with a little bit of nerd.






 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Excerpt:

Joaquin’s heart staggered, bearing the impact when he saw Martha waltz into the study a few steps ahead of her mother.

Some women had butts, others had asses. Martha had an ass, and it shone under the metallic gold-green fabric that fondled her slender body as she moved.

She was all bronze and shimmer and curves and long limbs, scarcely contained in a gown held together by strands of jewels.

A meaningful, appreciative glance passed between the attorneys, and Joaquin eyed them coldly.

Martha arrived at the desk, set down a shopping bag. “Merry Christmas, Pop.” She wiggled a sprig of something woven into her shiny, slicked hair.

Mistletoe. She’d tied mistletoe in her hair.

“Careful of my makeup,” she warned, offering her cheek for a kiss. To the rest of them, she said, “Excuse me, fellas, but my father insists that I knock, so—” She rapped on his desk obnoxiously.

“All right. All right.” Marshall’s smile appeared painful, but it was genuine. “Go, men. Enjoy the party.”

As the attorneys left, accepting drinks from the server waiting at his post, Joaquin approached Martha. She stood between her parents now, a treasure dangling out of his reach, a beauty out of his realm.

“Merry Christmas,” Joaquin said to her, presenting the oversize candy cane.

At the exact moment she ventured forward, suddenly near enough to taste.

Grab her face, lick into her mouth. Pull her close, drink her moans.

Rather than do it and have Tem threaten castration or Marshall call him out for a street fight, he laid the cane in her hand and murmured against her hair, “So you won’t steal mine the next time you’re in my ride.”

A snort of wry laughter or a smartass remark was expected. Not crystalline tears.

“I need to speak with my parents.” Taking the candy, she added in the silkiest whisper, “Tonight, if you want me, Joaquin, find me.”

It was the sexiest proposition he’d ever heard, or the most baffling. Either way, he left the office dazed, hard and confused.

The post Spotlight and Giveaway: Just for Christmas Night by Lisa Marie Perry appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
28. Spotlight and Giveaway: Inside Out by Lia Riley

I have an excerpt and giveaway for Lia Riley’s Inside Out this morning – enjoy!

INSIDE OUT by Lia Riley (December 2, 2014; Forever E-Book; $3.99)

Lia Riley made New Adult readers fall in love with her breakout debut, Upside Down. Sideswiped, the second of her series, made readers clamor for more. Now, with INSIDE OUT, Lia Riley brings her evocative Off the Map series to a stunning conclusion.

When Talia first moved from California to Australia to study abroad, she never dreamed she’d find the love of her life. Bran understands her like no one ever has before. And despite the numerous challenges they’ve faced, they’ve always managed to figure out how to stay together. But this time they’ll face their toughest hurdle yet. Is their love strong enough to keep them together?

Buy Links:

Amazon
B&N
iBooks
GooglePlay
Kobo

About the author:

After studying at the University of Montana-Missoula, Lia Riley scoured the world armed only with a backpack, overconfidence and a terrible sense of direction. When not torturing heroes (because c’mon, who doesn’t love a good tortured hero?), Lia herds unruly chickens, camps, beach combs, daydreams about as-of-yet unwritten books, wades through a mile-high TBR pile and schemes yet another trip. She and her family live mostly in Northern California.

Social Media Links:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

Tumblr

Excerpt:

Who was I when I first fell in love with Bran?

A person who had courage to stare down an unfeasible situation and say, Sure, I’m up for the challenge.

Who was I when Bran threw himself at me like a wounded animal, all claws, abandonment fear, spit, and fang?

A person who accepted that the moon has two sides, light and dark.

Who am I now?

I feel like a lost soul rocking in the corner, fresh out of ideas.

Bran pushes me through the long line until it’s our turn at the passport desk.

“How long do you plan to stay in the United States?” The customs official glances from Bran’s face to his passport photo and back again.

My stomach squirms like a writhing snake. We’ve avoided any discussion about future plans, focused instead on the short term. I had to accept the reality that I couldn’t return to the Peace Corps, even with the medical separation. I was too sick, too shattered. Our discussions about the logistics of leaving Africa were easier to concentrate on than the looming issue of what we were going to do with each other. I treated the topic like an abandoned lot, filled with weeds and rusting cars, a subject to walk past and pretend to ignore.

Now a stranger is forcing the issue.

“Until this one gets better.” Bran cocks his head in my direction.

The woman scoots forward, peers at me with a faint frown. “May I see proof of a return ticket, sir?”

Bran digs out the photocopy of his itinerary. When we bought the tickets, he had to borrow money from his dad. He hasn’t said much, but I know the fact must eat at him. Add another bitter drop to my guilt bucket—soon it’s going to overflow.

“You’re on a temporary tourist visa.” The customs agent flips the passport to a blank page and stamps with obvious relish. “You have three months, starting now.”

Here we go again.

Visa issues.

Ticking clocks.

People imagine international romance is excitement, hot accents, and adventure. They don’t want to hear about the bureaucratic drudgery that threatens to harden the arteries of even the most passionate hearts.

I thought I was going somewhere.

Nope.

I am an idiot Icarus who flew too close to the sun.

Bran leans forward, his lips hover an inch from my ear, his breath a hot caress on my cool skin. “You okay, Captain?”

“Fine.”

“What are you thinking, thinker?”

“I’m just sitting here, a sitter.”

We roll past an American flag overhanging a framed photo of the president. His smile seems smug, as if to say, You really thought you’d get away?

Yes, sir. I kind of did.

“We’re up next.” Bran hands a final customs form to yet another officer who waves us toward big silver doors that open and shut like gnashing teeth. On the other side is California. I can’t shake the disorienting sense we’re heading in the wrong direction.

“Ready?”

Nope.

Bran crossed an ocean for me. I have to find the way out of this black swamp, but I’m manacled to an island of self-doubt, and the tide is rising.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Spotlight and Giveaway: Inside Out by Lia Riley appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
29. Spotlight: Home for the Holiday by Rochelle Alers

This morning I have an excerpt from Rochelle Alers’ Home for the Holidays to get you holiday spirit.  Enjoy!

About HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS

There’s no place like home for the holidays, especially for divorced pastry chef Iris Nelson. After escaping an abusive marriage, she’s found peace on charming Cavanaugh Island. As the holiday approaches, Iris looks forward to spending it with her newfound best friend’s family . . . and their very handsome visitor.

On leave from Afghanistan, Army Master Sergeant Collier Ward is excited to be reunited with his family for Christmas. But the best gift of all may be this warm, beautiful stranger who joins them for the festivities. With his visit coming to an end, Collier can’t deny the heat smoldering between them. Yet Iris can’t help but wonder if it’s just the glow of the season-and one night of passion-or a true miracle of love that will change their lives forever . . .

Amazon: http://amzn.to/15MAMwa

B&N: http://bit.ly/10FJoBS

iTunes: http://bit.ly/1xigdRZ

Kobo: http://bit.ly/1xdGb8f

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/10FJr0y

Excerpt:

When Collier walked into the apartment earlier that afternoon asking to date her, Iris had felt as if she’d been enveloped in a cocoon with a happiness expiration date stamped on the outside. Collier would only be around for another couple of weeks and then he’d be gone. And yet, here he was offering her a chance at… She didn’t want to say love, because falling in love with him wasn’t an option. But trust perhaps. If nothing else, maybe Collier could finally teach her to trust a man without looking for an ulterior motive in his interest.

“Wait here,” she told him.

Iris went into her bedroom and retrieved a second set of keys to the apartment, knowing her life was about to change. She planned to give a man the keys to her sanctuary.

Iris returned to the living room, reached for Collier’s hand, placed the keys on his palm and closed his fingers over them. “Yes.” Going on tiptoe, she kissed his cheek. “Good night, and thanks for making this Thanksgiving one I’ll remember for a very long time.”

Collier ran a finger down her nose. “Good night, babe. Sleep well.”

About Rochelle Alers

Bestselling author, Rochelle Alers has nearly two million copies of her novels in print. She is also the recipient of numerous awards, including the Gold Pen Award, the Emma Award, Vivian Stephens Award for Excellence in Romance Writing, the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award and the Zora Neale Hurston Literary Award. 

Website

The post Spotlight: Home for the Holiday by Rochelle Alers appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
30. Guest Post and Giveaway: Collete West, Author of Game On

Please welcome Collete West to the virtual offices this morning! She’s here to share a Top 5 list, and she has an awesome giveaway for you to enter!

Top 5 Things Jilly Would Never Do on a Date by Collete West

1. Make boring, small talk.

If he’s going to say something, it’s going to be meaningful—something that’s sure to hold your interest and give you some deep insight into his character.

2. Split the check.

He might not take you to the most glamorous of locations, but he’ll be sure to pick up the tab. He likes being able to take care of his girl, but he’s going to make sure that there’s a personal touch to everything he does.

3. Get dressed up.

He will if he has to, but he’d rather not. He finds suits to be uncomfortable, especially those Italian designer varieties. He doesn’t like clothing that constricts his movements, and if it does—he’d fantasize about you taking it off him.

4. Go to trendy places.

He’s much more comfortable out of the limelight. He’s a well known ballplayer, who can’t run from being a celebrity, but he’d like to pretend that it’s possible when he’s with you. He wants you to see him as just a regular guy, and he’s happy indulging in activities that ordinary people take for granted—even something as simple as strolling down the street hand in hand.

5. Make the first move.

He’s super shy and even though he’s full of confidence on the field, it doesn’t mean he scores a lot off of it. He wants to satisfy your desires but you’ll have to encourage him to take it to the next level because Jilly’s the kind of guy who needs you to spell it out for him.

Game On

New York Kings # 3

By: Collette West

Releasing October 17th, 2014

Self-Published

Pitching phenom Bruce “Jilly” Gillette has a hard time talking to women. His hulking presence of tattoos and muscles is what makes him an intimidating closer on the mound, yet off the field, he’s painfully shy, uncomfortable in his own skin.

Desperate to revamp his loner image, the New York Kings hold a dream date contest, granting the lucky winner a night on the town with their surly reliever, doing whatever it takes to force Jilly out of his comfort zone.

Hailey Halpert enters the contest on a whim, looking for answers as to why her high school relationship with Jilly hit the skids. Now she’s a popular romance author writing under a pen name, and her reappearance in Jilly’s life is no accident. It turns out that her novels are all about the sexy players on the Kings, and Jilly has no clue that he’s about to become her new leading man.

Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2014/09/game-on-new-york-kings-3-by-collette.html

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22883350-game-on?from_search=true

Buy Links: Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iTunes

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Game-Collette-West-ebook/dp/B00OHQ8ZLE

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/game-on-west-collette/1120553674?ean=2940150494725&isbn=2940150494725

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/collette-west/id830692301?mt=11&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/search?Query=%22collette+west%22+&fcmedia=Book

Author Info

Collette West grew up as somewhat of a jock-nerd hybrid. Entering the world three weeks premature, her dad nearly missed her birth because he had seats behind the dugout for a sold-out, highly-anticipated match-up between two of baseball’s biggest rivals. Not to be outdone, her book-loving mom taught her how to read by the time she was three. A love of the game coupled with an appreciation for the written word were instilled in Collette’s impressionable brain from a young age. No wonder her characters believe in the philosophy: sports + romance = a little slice of heaven.

Splitting her time between the Pocono Mountains and Manhattan, Collette indulges her inner fangirl by going to as many games as she can from hockey to baseball and downloading every sports romance novel in existence onto her iPad. When she’s not clicking away on her laptop, she enjoys walking her dog in Central Park, satisfying her caffeine craving at the Starbucks on Broadway and keeping an eye out for Mr. Right. But above all, she loves dishing with her readers. Email her at collette_west@yahoo.com

 

She is the author of NIGHT GAMES, GAME CHANGER and GAME ON.

Author Links: Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Collette-West/537935442972229

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Collette_West

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7539982.Collette_West

Rafflecopter Giveaway ($10 Amazon eGift Card and, signed paperback of GAME ON)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Guest Post and Giveaway: Collete West, Author of Game On appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
31. Guest Post and Giveaway: Christina Moore, Author of Beautiful Death

Please welcome Christina Moore to the virtual offices.  She’s here to talk about her release Beautiful Death.

Greetings to all of you Manga Maniac Café readers, I’m Christina Moore, the author of the Uruwashi Series. I’m in the middle of a tour here for Book One of the Uruwashi Series, Beautiful Death. Book two, Bête Noire and book three, Moon Child are also available for your reading enjoyment. You can read more about them at www.thebeautifuldeath.com.

Tristan Blum, poor blundering Tristan, is the reluctant protagonist of the series. He’s part Japanese by birth but pure American at heart. He’s blunt, rash and amusingly unpredictable at times. And let’s not forget the mouth he’s got on him, even more so now that he’s lost his way. Before his life was turned upside-down by the seemingly random car accident that took his family, he was a good, nice kid, generous and fun. Back then, when life was simple, he didn’t have much of a requisite on accoutrements just to leave the house, not like he does today, embroiled so in his dark new world.

Once where his keys, wallet and a full iPod were more than enough to hit the streets to have a good time, he now has to rely on much darker accessories, and there’s usually no fun to be had. Just staying alive has taken its toll on him, making him rely on carrying a gun with an extra clip (or three), several knives and a good pair of vampire-kicking boots—or jikininki stompers as he likes to think of them now. (He learned the first time not to stomp a jikininki to death with his bare feet). The katana he usually does without unless he’s talked into it, but the most important of thing of all he can’t leave home without is not a thing at all, but a who. Such a heavy dependence on the dead to maintain life can’t be particularly prudent though, can it? It seems to be his only choice now.

Beautiful Death for Kindle is on sale from November 24-30, Bête Noire from December 1-8 and Moon Child from December 9-16, all for $.99 each. There’s also a Tour prize happening, you can find the entry form at my website. Thanks goes to our host, Julie and thank you readers for stopping by. Stick around for more Tour exclusives, you can follow at http://www.paranormalcravings.com/nov-24-dec-8-beautiful-death-uruwashi-series-1-christina-moore (P.S. I totally dig manga, you can check out my collection on Goodreads—maybe you’ll even discover some of my writing influences…)

Title: Beautiful Death (The Uruwashi Series #1)

Genres: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal romance

Series: The Uruwashi Series

ISBN: 978-1500670757

Book Length: 361

Publisher: Uruwashi Publications

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23261303-beautiful-death

Buy Links

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Beautiful-Death-Uruwashi-Christina-Moore-ebook/dp/B00FVV7H9K/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=&qid=

His life is in a monster’s hands but he may be one himself.
The only thing about Tristan’s typical American life that’d been even slightly atypical was that he was adopted. The Blum’s raised him, loved him as if he was their own. But they never knew who Tristan really was, about the stigma his birth surname carried. Everything changed after their untimely death. Suddenly monsters are after Tristan and all because of a few words spoken by a remarkable stranger.
After carelessly stumbling into the arms of the enemy’s servant, a rotting jikininki, the one silently watching over Tristan is forced to intercede. Ash claims to be a hunter, but that’s not the whole truth. Whatever Ash is or isn’t, it’s neither good nor evil. And Ash is the only one who can save Tristan now. But can someone who can’t even accept the unwavering truth that maybe they never were really human to start with be saved?

EXERPT Chapter 1: Clubbed to Death

THERE were dead bodies everywhere. Skeletons, zombies, mummies, something hairy with fangs… Odoru Shikabane was one of the stranger clubs Tristan had been to. He wasn’t sure what the name meant in English, but the theme was clear: death. He half expected a real bat to fly by or find a guy dressed in a black cape with red lining telling all the girls “I vant to suck your blood.” Yep, it was just weird.

Tristan gave a soft oomph as someone plowed right into the back of him. “Hey pretty lady,” he said with a great big smile, looking down at the petite girl gawking up at him. “How’s it going? Ah… genki ka?” That was pretty much the extent of his Japanese right there. Well, plus a few curses, but she was too cute to curse at just for running into him.

The girl gasped and then was being dragged off by her friend, saying loudly in Japanese that she didn’t need to get mixed up with a gaijin. The small town was more than a little weary of foreigners and as gaijin went, Tristan stood out more than most with his towering height and handsome European features. At least he wasn’t in a skirt like the dude at the bar—it was only a kilt, but still, it wasn’t something you saw every day. At least not outside of Tokyo.

There was one who wasn’t intimidated by the American’s presence though as she wiggled up against him. That would be Shizuka. Her name meant “the quiet one.” Tristan wondered how someone like her ended up with a name like that. Seriously, the woman never shut up. She did a little dance, moving against him to get his attention. Her silly expression clearly said she had something to say—because she never did, right? Tristan bent down with a weary sigh. He wasn’t tired of her company really, but he was tired of her going on without being able to understand a thing she said. Even the English bits. Shizuka leaned in close, pressing as much of her front to his, a hand against his chest for support. The other found its way over his hip and grabbed a handful of American ass.

Tristan grinned at the new development, tilting his face into hers and met those gorgeous dark almond eyes. She had been getting all touchy feely with him from the start, but this was more forward, more demanding than before. Maybe she was tired of waiting for him to make a move. He wasn’t shy when it came to flirting, but somehow, he just wasn’t into it tonight. It might have had something to do with the reason he was in Japan to start with. He didn’t belong here. He knew he didn’t, but still he tried to force it. He had to find something normal in his life again. Flirting, drinking and the fun that came after was normal enough he supposed. Somehow though, it wasn’t enough. Not nearly.

“I get more drink,” Shizuka breathed into Tristan’s ear. She’d been feeding him drinks all night. If it was her plan to get him loaded, she’d have to try a hell of a lot harder than a handful of beers. She shot him a grin full of teeth and danced off towards the bar without another word—small miracle. She made sure to prance around so that her dress bounced up to show virgin white panties, now bright purple thanks to the black lights. Tristan grinned hard and found himself swaying with the pulse of the room, mesmerized by the music, the mass of bodies in endless dance and the sway of Shizuka’s cute little ass. The music picked up, a fast, frantic beat and he was lost to the pounding. He caught himself quickly and stopped, wondering what he was doing. He hated dancing.

Shizuka leaned over the front of the bar and flashed the entire place her rear end and those sexy glowing panties. Everyone was watching her. They were thinking primitive sexual thoughts—well, the men anyway. The women, they all looked like they were about to claw her pretty little eyes out. Tristan chuckled, studying Shizuka’s exposed backside, moving his gaze down the smooth line the back of her legs made all the way to her shiny red heels. She had a great set of legs.

An ashy voice cut through the din as if searching Tristan out, drawing him out of his admiration of the saucy Asian. “That is no woman.”

“S’cuse me…?” Tristan drawled, turning. “What the f—” His next words were cut off when he saw the person standing behind him. “The hell are you?” he asked, eyeing the soft-faced, shorty with long pale hair that glowed purple in the lights. Dude was wearing a cape. Yep, just like Dracula. But his question wasn’t to the costume. He had no idea if he was talking to a young woman or an older teenaged boy. Guess he didn’t really care. “Look, Count. I’m not interested in whatever you’ve got hidden in that cape, so scamper off and hit on someone else.”

If only the loudmouthed American knew all that was hidden within. Maybe he wouldn’t have been so quick to snap. “You misunderstand, Tristan.”

The young stranger’s voice made Tristan flinch back. It was strange, but he felt like the voice touched him, tickled his face. Or maybe he was drunker than he realized. “Howdya know me?” The words fell out of his mouth jumbled, tongue slow and uncooperative. He stopped and clutched his head feeling disorientated. He was sweating, though it had nothing to with the oppressiveness of the club. “You know what, forget it, I’m leaving.”

He turned to go, but the other man grabbed his arm, forcing him to stop.

“I am afraid it is for something rather more urgent than sex. I will only ask for you to come with me once politely.”

Tristan made a rude noise, giving him the look to go with it as he felt a little more himself and jerked his arm away. “Look, sweetheart. I’m not going anywhere with you. So why don’t you go find someone else to take home and play your silly vampire game with.”

“You misunderstand,” the stranger repeated sternly. “I could care less about games. I am here to help.”

“Ahuh. Help. I’ve heard that before. Seriously, piss off.”

The stranger let out an annoyed sigh, looked down, brought long fingers up to pinch a thin bridge of nose. Another sigh. “Looks like things must be done the hard way. Again.” When the wannabe vampire looked up again, he was grinning so that Tristan got a flash of press-on fangs. “But the hard way can be more liberating now, can it not?”

Unlike Shizuka, the stranger spoke perfect English and yet Tristan didn’t understand a word of their bizarre conversation. He blinked down at the stranger, wondering what in the hell he—yeah, Tristan decided that kind of arrogance had to be a dude—was rattling on about. He opened his mouth to ask just that when the guy reached out and grabbed his upper arm again.

“You do not have time for this.”

“Wha—” Tristan’s words turned into a small yelp of shock and he stumbled into a girl, spilling her drink all over them both. “Hey!” Tristan yelled over the music as he tumbled along, lead around by his arm like an indignant toddler. “What the hell do you think you’re doing?”

Cries of surprise and groans of anger echoed around the pair as Tristan was dragged through the dense throng of hot, thrashing bodies. He tripped over his own feet, over other feet, over nothing fighting to keep up with the quick pace. He glared at the back of the short man’s head, willing his gaze to burn a hole through him. When that didn’t work, Tristan jerked his arm but it was as if the guy anticipated the movement seconds before it happened and tightened fingers into Tristan’s flesh. He groaned in frustration and tried to plant his feet against the floor, faintly aware that his arm hurt. He pulled back with his full body, thinking the smaller man couldn’t possibly hold on against his larger weight and his sneakers lost traction causing him to fall into a slender back, fingers tangled in silken hair.

“What the fuck?” Tristan muttered under his breath, arm still in the guy’s bruising grip.

The other man looked back, past Tristan. Green and blue lights reflected off his pale skin giving that fucking stupid smirk a sickly complexion. Tristan followed the other man’s line of sight and found Shizuka standing where he had been moments before, a drink in both hands, watching him being dragged off. She didn’t look very concerned.

Tristan huffed at her indifference and stumbled again, almost falling. There was a hard jerk on his arm and then he was being propelled forward. Hands slapped down onto his back and he went stumbling head first into a door painted blood red. His free hand went up to catch himself but he slipped, falling against the cold metal. He cursed loudly when his thumb pulled back at a bad angle—it was a miracle he didn’t dislocate it. The slurred words were barely out of his mouth when the stranger kicked in the long push bar with his heavy boot, making the door spring outward. Tristan was falling forward again, only to come to a sudden stop. Hard fingers dug into his ribs from behind as the guy grabbed him. Just as he thought the short shit decided to play nice, there was a deep grunt and then Tristan was airborne. He had seconds to think that the cold outside air felt good and then his right shoulder slammed into a dumpster. He cried out and tumbled backwards onto his ass. The ground was cool and wet through his jeans. The tang of blood filled his mouth where he’d bitten into his cheek.

He shook his head and mumbled, “Pretty strong for a scrawny little bitch.” He wobbled to his feet, turning to face the man who was now standing outside too, back to Tristan. “Look, asshole, I don’t know what the fuck your problem is, but you don’t need to be a fucking prick about it.” He was talking to the back of his head. The jerk hadn’t bothered to face him while he was speaking. “Hey, I’m talking to you.” He grabbed the thin shoulder in front of him and spun the shorter man to face him. Tristan’s fist was balled and moving towards that stoic expression before he had a chance to think about what his body was doing, a reaction that’d gotten him into trouble more than once recently.

Brilliant white flashed past Tristan’s vision seconds before his head snapped back, his body following the movement. After a moment of disorientation, Tristan realized he was on the ground against the dumpster, again. A tickle above his lip brought his hand up to find blood. He stared at the red dripping down his fingers for a moment, unbelieving and then up to the stranger. “You son of a bitch, who the fuck do you think you ar—”

The back door squeaked and they both jerked to attention. Tristan sighed to himself, thinking that sumo-sized dude who was doing crowd control had seen them and decided to follow them out. He was no stranger to a bar fight, or two, or the inevitable that generally followed. And who knew if the cops around here even spoke English. Guess it wouldn’t really matter either way since Tristan had no idea what the hell was going on. He didn’t have the faintest idea why he was sitting outside on his ass, in a filthy alleyway with a bloody nose, staring up at the short man who gave it to him.

“Shit,” Tristan said with a sigh. He was having a fairly decent night too, that was until this guy showed up. Now, it looked like he was going to end up in jail. Perfect.

The door opened and a beautifully shaped almond eye framed by smooth white porcelain appeared around the edge. Tristan let out a long breath, only half relieved. Shizuka stepped out into the alleyway, her heels making two sharp clicks against the ground. She watched with a cynical sort of smile while Tristan inched to his feet using the dumpster at his back as a crutch. Shizuka slid her hands behind her, leaning against the door as she glided across the front of it to make it click shut under her weight. She grinned broadly, too broadly. It was then he realized she was mirroring him, mocking him. He pushed off of the dumpster and took a step towards her, but not before tripping on his own feet again.

Shizuka stood off the door immediately, mimicking his movements, less the clumsy trip, and took a step towards him. Tristan’s expression shifted into anger as she gave him a huge shit-eating grin. He just about had enough of these two. He wanted to get the fuck out before he really did find himself in serious trouble.

“That was unnecessary,” Shizuka said to the stranger, amusement heavy in her voice as she fought off a laugh.

“It got you outside…,” he answered, “you disgusting filth.”

Now Tristan was just confused. He thought that maybe the guy wanted the girl, but now it looked like that couldn’t have been farther from the truth. Maybe it was the beer. Wouldn’t have been the first time it confused him.

“So rude.” Shizuka put hands to her slender hips. “Master teach you no manner?”

The young man grunted a crude laugh, as if it were some terrible joke. “Pitted against that man, I would be the one to teach manners.”

In her native tongue, Shizuka responded, “What do you want, fucking traitor whore?”

The stranger answered in perfect Japanese. “Now are those Shizuka’s words or his?”

“You know very well that answer.”

The man gave a heavy sigh. “I am here to stop you from doing this.”

“This one is special.”

“I know.”

“There was a telling,” Shizuka snapped. “He must die.”

“You are wrong.”

“He’s dangerous, As—”

“You have always been wrong,” he snapped, returning to English.

The creature laughed, all giggly and girly.

Tired of being left out of the conversation, Tristan took a heavy step forward, reaching for the stranger. “What, the fuck are you two—”

The shorter man’s head jerked around to glare at Tristan. All he could see of the look was those intense pale eyes but it was more than enough to shut him up, snap his hand back. He couldn’t explain it, but there was something dangerous and wild about this strange man who came barging into his life like a bad superhero in that silly cape and press-on fangs.

“Enough,” Shizuka said, returning to her version of English, “you bore and I have pet now. No hard feeling.”

Tristan smirked, wondering if he was the pet. Then he thought that sounded like a lot of fun, in the right situation. God, what the hell was wrong with him, thinking about sex at a time like this? “Look, it was nice meeting you both,” he said with a sarcastic tone that even the dead could hear. “But I’m done. I’m going home. You two have fun without me.”

Tristan pushed past the shorter man, bumping into his shoulder harder than he intended and tripped. He fell into the stranger and felt something hidden within the cape that he was sure he didn’t like. “What the fu—” The same moment he realized what the hard object was, Shizuka shot forward and decked Tristan. He never saw the hit coming and for such a tiny little thing, she packed one nasty punch. Tristan lost his footing and fell, timber, all six-three straight back. He only just managed to save from cracking his skull open on the pavement like a watermelon. When he looked up again, Shizuka was swinging at the stranger. Despite the absurdity of the whole damn situation, Tristan had to smile. The loudmouthed girl had more fire to her than he realized. He loved a woman that could kick his ass.

She took another swing at the stranger that went wide when he ducked and he countered, delivering a hard blow to Shizuka’s plexus.

“Hey!” Tristan shouted at him, stumbling to his feet again. “The hell is wrong with you… hitting a girl?”

Tristan threw his own punch that never made contact. He wasn’t sure how, only that the stranger was holding his fist in a cold, hard hand, blinking at him. “That is no woman.”

He said that before too, didn’t he? Tristan jerked his hand back, glanced at Shizuka then back to the man. “You’re a bit of an asshole. Or fucking blind.”

The other man gave a small nod. “I accept the former. However, the latter is far from the truth. It is you who is blind.”

“What the fuck are you talking about? You know what, I don’t give a shit. Come on Shizuka, I’ll take you home.”

“Stop!” The man darted out and grabbed Tristan’s wrist when he reached out to the woman. He started to argue, ready to punch the short shit’s lights out when there was a loud laugh echoed in the alleyway. They pair stopped grappling and looked up.

Shizuka looked… different, though Tristan wasn’t sure exactly why right away. “And that is not man.” She laughed again. “I think animal. Hai, hai, inu-chan…”

“Yogore,” the man hissed back.

Shizuka burst into laughter. Her flesh rippled from top to bottom and the smooth porcelain was replaced with dark, shriveled leather. The surface flaked, sending leaves of dead flesh to the ground like dirty brown snow. Voids opened, revealing knots of raw muscle and dark jelly. Silken black hair came off in thick clumps, taking chunks of scalp with it to fall to the pavement with a wet, sticky noise that echoed off the close walls.

As her body changed, so did her voice. Her laughter turned shrill. The short little black dress sagged on her frame as dark fluids poured out from under it and down spindly legs. She started to wobble on her feet, splashing up dark liquid as she took tiny steps to steady herself in her high heels. Finally, it was clear she couldn’t stand in those dangerous shoes anymore. She kicked them off, sending them towards the club exit and stepped bony feet into the body fluid collecting under her in a murky pool.

“Oh my god,” Tristan whispered and sucked in a sharp breath, catching a whiff of decay. He gagged and stumbled backwards until his back hit the dumpster, jabbing an elbow against the side. He sank to the ground against the bin, cradling his elbow to his chest, though the pain wasn’t enough to matter. Nothing mattered now except for the awful thing standing before him that he knew as Shizuka. The stranger made no movement that Tristan could see from his low seat. Somehow though, he knew the guy wasn’t surprised. That he knew exactly what this woman was.

Monster…

The man sighed, shaking his head and reached inside his cape. “I had preferred that it not come to this.” The soft reverberation of metal rubbing against something solid sounded from under the fabric moments before the katana that Tristan felt earlier emerged.

Shizuka’s laughter finally subsided as she rolled cloudy brown eyes down to look at the others. She grinned broadly showing the muscles of her jaw in thick leathery strands. When she spoke again, it was the voice of a cartoon snake, all hiss. “Silly toy for silly—”

“Damare!” the cloaked stranger shouted and darted forward, blade aimed right for Shizuka’s head.

Totally thrown off guard, lost and confused, Tristan gave a small cry and jerked back in shock, hitting his head on the dumpster. He lifted a fist and banged it into the side. He was angry that he hadn’t high-tailed it out of there while he had the chance. He was angry that all he could do was sit there and watch, trapped between a stinking dumpster and a man with a sword fighting a zombie.

A fucking zombie.

He thought briefly of getting up, trying to sneak away. Maybe of evening helping the guy he was ready to punch out only minutes before. But he fell into a trance, staring at the spectacle before him. It was a dance these two performed. Somehow, despite one being short, the other short and dead, they both moved with a delicate grace, and it was completely mesmerizing. He was shaken out of the trance though when Shizuka landed a hard blow to the man’s stomach that made him give a low groan and shudder. But, he didn’t go down.

Zombie Shizuka stepped back, shifting into a stance that would have been appealing if she had her skin. Her chin started to jiggle in a movement that was the beginning of her trying to speak, but then her lower jaw fell off. The man gave a crude grunt and a little leap, aiming for Shizuka again with that sharp, shiny blade. But he was swinging at empty space. The blade whipped through the air, pulled downward as gravity brought man and metal back to the earth. The tip chipped into asphalt with a loud metal ting. Tristan had only a moment for his lethargic brain to think about why it was wrong before the man spun on his heel, lifting the sword towards Tristan.

He put his hands up. “Whoa, hey—”

Shizuka appeared between them and reached out, grabbing the man by his neck with those disgusting decomposed fingers. He let out a long breath and lowered his arms, letting them hang lifelessly at his sides as she held him in place. The sword almost slipped from his fingers, but he didn’t seem to notice one way or the other. There was no fear in his eyes as a dark, closed-mouth smile curled his lips, not quite reaching those pale eyes.

A blaze of bright metal flashed up past Shizuka’s side and the arm gripping the stranger’s neck was suddenly on the ground. Shizuka wailed and reached for him again with her remaining arm as he jumped away. His toes barely touched asphalt and then he was airborne again moving towards Shizuka. Towards Tristan. Tristan sucked in a sharp breath through clenched teeth when the guy suddenly appeared directly in front of him, toe to toe. The young man stared down at him, calm and relaxed as if he had been there all along. As if there wasn’t a zombie trying to kill him.

Tristan blinked up at him for the longest ten seconds of his life, not a single tangible thought making its way to the surface to help guide him to something close to sane. He finally tore his gaze from the stranger. Shizuka was standing behind him with her back to the others. Tristan looked up to the man again, confused and whispered, “What happe—”, but never got to finish his question. Shizuka’s head broke away from her neck and hit the ground with a loud crack. Seconds later her body crumbled to the ground with a heavy weight that said she was more than skin and bones. The stench of death doubled as a breeze brought Shizuka’s scent to the others. It seemed to seek Tristan out, tickling its way into his sinuses, making the back of throat itch. Tristan’s stomach tightened and the blood drained from his face so fast it made him dizzy.

The cloaked man blinked slowly, his eyes coming into focus on Tristan’s. Expression utterly blank, he gave his blade a quick flick at his side. Tristan flinched at the sudden movement and wished he hadn’t. Expression still impassive, the stranger flung his long hair over his shoulder, turned away, and brought his sword down onto the mass of bones and rotted flesh that was once Shizuka.

The first piece of zombie was tossed over Tristan’s head to the dumpster and a warm glob of something squishy, wet and stinking of rot fell to his forehead and stuck. That was all it took. Tristan’s stomach twisted and he scrambled to his knees, retching on the pavement.

When his stomach was empty of all of its contents Tristan sat back on his heels, his back to the guy. He took in a deep breath past his burning throat and hung his head in hopes to ease the pounding. He could hear the cutting of rotted flesh and bones. He wasn’t ready to turn around and see that again. Not just yet. He sighed, shutting his eyes and his head spun again. When he opened his eyes, something to his right caught his attention in a dark corner between the dumpster and a wall. Stomach spinning, head feeling even worse, he decided standing wasn’t an option at the moment and pushed to hands and knees to crawl forward a few paces.

“Oh shit!” he screamed and fell back onto his ass, damp gravel cutting into his palms.

“What is it?” the zombie slayer asked, annoyance lacing his words. The cracks of breaking bone echoed loudly off the walls as he deftly finished his work.

A new nightmare, the crumpled body of a naked woman shoved in the corner like a pile of trash. Her stomach cavity had been ripped open and emptied, leaking stinking bile and other vital liquids on to the pavement. The edges of the hole were torn and jagged like an animal had at it with its teeth. Bloody scratches ran down the length of her face stopping at lips frozen in a frightened scream. Two dark, cavernous holes stared blindly up at nothing where her eyes had been ripped out.

“Ther—there’s a dead girl back here.” He didn’t think he even spoke loud enough for the guy to hear. He swallowed hard against the tang of his regurgitated dinner and alcohol. He was sure he was going to lose it again. God, what was wrong with him? He never got sick from just drinking. And as his head spun he was sure the reason had more to do with Shizuka than he realized.

“Ah yes, I had almost forgotten about that. The jikininki I just disposed of did that. It needed the—” He paused and Tristan looked over his shoulder to him, disgusted. He was twirling his hand in a small circle like he was searching for the appropriate word. Finally he settled on, “Sustenance, from that poor soul there to appear as the exquisite woman she was.”

“I—I don’t understand…”

“I know.” He strolled forward, boots silent on the pavement, and extended a hand.

Tristan gave the pale hand a long, slow blink and whispered, “You askin’ me for a dance again?” A heavy, dark fuzziness was creeping in on the edges of his vision. He shuddered, suddenly cold and let out a long sigh. “You’re pretty sweet, for a weird lookin’ dude.”

The “weird lookin’ dude” gave a dismayed sigh. “Come, we must go.”

Tristan met those strange eyes and gave him another long look. “Go… with you? Why?”

The offer of a hand was rescinded with a scowl. “Did you not figure that much out?”

Tristan shook his head, immediately regretting it. Thick lace covered his vision, blurring everything and he swayed, even though he was seated firmly on the ground.

“That jikininki knew me,” he said, voice steadily rising, “but it was summoned to hunt you.”

Tristan could only manage to answer with a long, drawn out, “Oh.” Someone was looking for him? That was nice. He dropped his face into his hands and toppled over. Something dark and warm was coursing through him. He was certain of it now, that he’d been drugged. It was whispering promises of sweet sleep to him. His eyes had shut, though he couldn’t remember when. He was losing against the drug. It was better to not fight it anyway.

“Who—what… ?” He couldn’t even finish his sentence. What was he even trying to say? Guess it wasn’t important.

“Everything is okay,” came the stranger’s creamy smooth voice, like a distant whisper. It was strangely comforting. “I am here now to—” His voice broke. “Just… sleep.”

Tristan let out a long groan, the drug finally claiming victory over him. He thought he heard the stranger again in his last twilight of consciousness whisper something about ashes.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

SOMETIMES known as Stinna (pronounced Steena), Christina Moore just so happens to be her real name. Her writing career started under a pseudonym in the romance genre. But her true love has always been the paranormal. Vampires, werewolves, demons, faerie and everything in between, she loves them all—the allure of the unknown. The birth of the Uruwashi series started many years ago with a daydream sparked by a very special voice of a certain bad-ass vampire in her favorite anime. Little did she know then that the story of the Uruwashi would morph into what it is today.

When not writing or chasing her toddler, Christina loves to read, garden, cross-stitch, and play video games. A Maryland native, she lives just outside of beautiful historic downtown Annapolis with her husband, daughter (a.k.a. Tiny Boss) and two Australian Shepherds, Deunan and Aydin. Growing up riding horses to show in dressage and cross-country, later moving on to racing Volkswagens and then finding a career in the architecture industry as a graphic artist/mother hen, she’s never been a real expert in any one thing. Christina has a passion for diversity and enjoys many types of music, film and literature that sometimes clash with the norm. She’s often said she’s going to marry Spike Spiegel when she grows up—her husband understands.

Author (Contact Links)

Website: www.thebeautifuldeath.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/thebeautifuldeathseries

Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheUruwashi

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7275171.Christina_Moore

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Christina-Moore/e/B00FVXGO92/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Guest Post and Giveaway: Christina Moore, Author of Beautiful Death appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
32. Spotlight and Giveaway: Tempting Mr Weatherstone by Vivienne Lorret

 

Tempting Mr. Weatherstone

Wallflower Weddings Book #0.5

By: Vivienne Lorret

On Sale Nov 25th, 2014

 

Avon Romance

Penelope Rutledge longs for passion, but only with the man of her dreams: the brilliant, dashing Ethan Weatherstone. If only her longtime neighbor would open his eyes and realize how much she loves him. If only they weren’t best friends with so much at stake. Penelope knows her future – and their friendship – is in her hands, but is she willing to take the biggest risk of all on the man she loves?

If it were up to Ethan, life and love would be as predictable as the figures in his ledgers – certainly nothing like the adventures Penelope longs for. Yet his childhood friend has grown into a beautiful, feisty woman blissfully unaware of the danger she causes when near. Ethan knows he must save Penelope-and her reputation…but can he save himself from the temptation of her lips?

Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2014/11/tempting-mr-weatherstone-by-vivienne.html

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22836686-tempting-mr-weatherstone

Series Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/115423-wallflower-weddings

Buy Links: Amazon | B&N | iTunes

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Tempting-Mr-Weatherstone-Wallflower-book-ebook/dp/B00M719Z3S

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/tempting-mr-weatherstone-vivienne-lorret/1120323588?ean=9780062387257

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/au/book/tempting-mr.-weatherstone/id904017053?mt=11

Author Info

I fell in love with fairy tales and the romance behind happily ever after at a very young age. Like a lot of you, I tweaked the fables bit by bit in my imagination until they suited me perfectly. By the time I was eleven, a teacher encouraged me to start writing.

Throughout the years that followed, my teachers remained my most fervent supporters, giving me the tools I needed to continue my journey as a writer.

My husband and I have two teenage boys, who are heroes in their own right. For now, we live in a small Midwestern town near Lake Michigan…until a time in the future when a new adventure calls us to other shores.

I am currently working on my next novel, but I always enjoy hearing from my readers. Feel free to email me at vivienne@vivlorret.net

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter

http://www.vivlorret.net/home

https://www.facebook.com/vivienne.lorret

https://twitter.com/VivLorret

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1806374.Vivienne_Lorret

 

Excerpt

Ethan Weatherstone was due for a piece of her mind. It was about time he understood that he had no right to interfere with her life.

Mind made up, she took one last look at the mail coach and shook her head. She reached down for her satchel and stormed over to Ethan’s carriage.

Penelope threw open the door and climbed inside, seething as she sat across from him. He didn’t even have the courtesy to look at her. Instead, he sat back against the squabs, his head turned to the window. The only reason she knew he was aware of her presence was from the way he clenched his jaw, a muscle twitching just beneath the surface of his skin.

“Were you waiting to humiliate me? Waiting until I was already seated before you dragged me away from the mail coach? Or perhaps you planned to follow me all the way to Portsmouth?”

He refused to respond or even so much as look at her. If she hadn’t been angry before she entered the carriage, then she certainly was fuming now.

“Truly, Ethan, for someone who cannot live outside the lines of your carefully crafted order, your sameness that covers you like a shroud, this is quite surprising behavior,” she hissed, baiting him. “I only wish your concern for my happiness were as great as your concern for my reputation.”

At that, he glared at her sharply. Ah, so she’d struck a chord.

Good. Yet still, he did not say anything.

There he sat, perfectly groomed, his cravat perfectly pleated, his temper perfectly managed. She wished just once he’d lose some of that control. Because here she sat, with her eyes, most likely puffy and red from having cried most of the night instead of sleeping. She was certainly not perfectly groomed, since she could feel a soggy tendril of hair plastered to her cheek. Her cloak was damp from rain. Her nose was cold and likely red as well.

“How can you be so . . . so unaffected all the time?” Her voice rose with her accusation. “Haven’t you ever dreamed for something outside the realm of possibility? Or are you content with each day so long as your cravat is perfectly pleated?”

She glared at the offending garment, struck by a ridiculous notion to crumple it. No sooner had the idea formed that she gave in to the impulse and moved forward on her seat, her arm reaching forward.

Ethan stopped her, taking hold of her wrist. His eyes flared. Before she could react, he yanked, propelling her forward to land clumsily on his lap.

“How dare—”

His mouth covered hers, silencing her outrage. Her head spun, reeling from the sudden scorching heat of his kiss.

This was a kiss, wasn’t it? Yet, it was nothing like her dreams, where his rehearsed request was followed by carefully controlled actions. No, this was no gentle dream. This was hard and demanding. His tongue didn’t request entrance but swept in and plundered.

His arms were not gentle either. In fact, he held her so tightly she couldn’t move, and grasped her wrist so she couldn’t touch him or push him away.

But she’d never push him away.

Instead, she wanted to cling to him. Her anger evaporated in a rush of steam. Her mind cried out for more of this glorious punishment. She wanted his kiss to burn her, through and through. This was the first time she’d been warm in months.

Rafflecopter Giveaway ($35.00 Harry & David Gift Card)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Spotlight and Giveaway: Tempting Mr Weatherstone by Vivienne Lorret appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
33. {Review} Time After Time by Tamara Ireland Stone

Review by Kit Time After Time by Tamara Ireland Stone Sequel to Time Between Us Age Range: 12 and up Grade level: 7th and up Paperback: 368 pages Publisher: Disney-Hyperion; Reprint edition (October 14, 2014) Goodreads | Amazon Calling Anna and Bennett’s romance long distance is an understatement: she’s from 1995 Chicago and he’s a time traveler from 2012 San Francisco. The two of them never

0 Comments on {Review} Time After Time by Tamara Ireland Stone as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
34. Spotlight and Giveaway: Love Me Tender by Susan Fox

I’m still recovering from a busy Thanksgiving weekend!  I have an excerpt and giveaway for Susan Fox’s Love Me Tender to help ease you back into the workweek.  Enjoy!

Love Me Tender
Caribou Crossing # 4

By: Susan Fox

Releasing December 2nd, 2014

Zebra / Kensington

Pay a visit to Caribou Crossing, the rustic, inviting Western town where broken hearts mend and new love takes root…

Dave Cousins, owner of the Wild Rose Inn, is known throughout Caribou Crossing as the nicest—and loneliest—guy in town. He’s had his heart broken more than once, and he’s determined not to let it happen again. So it’s no wonder he’s wary when a free-spirited drifter leaves him longing for more than just a steamy fling…

Like the wild goose tattooed on her shoulder, Cassidy Esperanza goes wherever the wind takes her. For her, a new day means a fresh start. And yet something about her days in Caribou Crossing—and nights with its handsome hotel owner—makes her think about staying a while. But when life takes an unexpected turn, her first instinct is to take flight once more. Is Dave strong enough to help them both face their fears, come to terms with the past, and believe that sometimes love truly can last a lifetime?

Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2014/09/love-me-tender-caribou-crossing-4-by.html

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20949500-love-me-tender

Goodreads Series Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/111662-caribou-crossing

Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes | iBooks | Kobo

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Love-Tender-Caribou-Crossing-Romance/dp/1420135767/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1411745530&sr=8-1&keywords=9781420135763

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/love-me-tender-susan-fox/1118871374?ean=9781420135763

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/lv/book/love-me-tender/id880314959?mt=11

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/love-me-tender-20

Books A Million: http://www.booksamillion.com/p/Love-Tender/Susan-Fox/9781420135763?id=6117417208691

Indie Bound: http://www.indiebound.org/book/9781420135763

Author Info

Award-winning, international best-selling author Susan Fox (who also writes as Savanna Fox and Susan Lyons) is a Pacific Northwester with homes in Victoria and Vancouver, British Columbia. She has degrees in law and psychology, and has had a variety of careers, including perennial student, computer consultant, and legal editor. Fiction writer is by far her favorite, giving her an outlet to demonstrate her belief in the power of love, friendship, and a sense of humor. Visit her at her website.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Goodreads

Website: http://susanlyons.ca/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SusanLyonsFox
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4646475.Susan_Fox

   

Excerpt

How many times had some well-intentioned relative or friend told him he needed to dip his toe in the dating waters, get back in the game, yada yada? He rejected their efforts at matchmaking and suffered through the curious gazes they gave to every female he even spoke to.

Didn’t they get it? He couldn’t imagine ever loving again. Besides, he’d been by Anita’s side from the time she got the diagnosis of terminal brain cancer until the day she died. Never, ever again, would he let himself be vulnerable to the shattering pain of loss. To the bitter anger against the world, himself, even the woman he loved but couldn’t save.

His heart clenched, the ache rose in his throat, and—

“Dave? You okay?” Warm fingers brushed his forearm, bare below the rolled-up sleeve of his lightweight denim shirt.

Cassidy. He breathed in, fresh air cleansing his throat, his chest.

“Yeah, sorry,” he said brusquely. Her voice, her touch had beaten back the darkness.

And now that he was back in the real world, he realized how disconcertingly good those soft fingers felt against his skin.

They’d reached the outskirts of town, which gave him an excuse to raise his arm so that her hand dropped. He pointed ahead. “That’s Westward Ho!—where I keep my horse.” The well-maintained wooden stable housed a couple dozen horses. Beside it was a red-roofed barn, and two white-railed paddocks provided space for the horses to stretch and socialize.

“That’s so cool, that you have your own horse.”

He shrugged. “Can’t imagine my life without a horse.”

“You’ve been riding since you were little?”

“Yeah, though I wasn’t a ranch kid, or into rodeo, like some of my friends. When I married Jessie, horses became a bigger part of life, and Robin lives and breathes them.”

“Handy that you can keep your horse in town.”

“Uh-huh,” he said as they walked into the stable. “I try to get out on Malibu at least every couple of days. When I can’t, Robin or one of the staff here exercises him for me.”

Dave greeted Eddy, the teenage girl whose dad owned the business, and introduced Cassidy. Leaving the two of them to deal with Cassidy’s paperwork, he and Merlin went out to the paddock to call Malibu. The palomino gelding came over, bobbing his head eagerly.

Dave went through the familiar ritual: tie his horse with cross ties, groom him and pick his hooves, then saddle and bridle him. By the time he was finished, Eddy’d got Cassidy up on the back of a pinto mare and given her refresher instructions on how to position her body, hold the reins, and give basic cues to her horse.

“You’re all set,” Eddy said. “Have fun.”

“Absolutely.” Cassidy beamed at the girl, then at Dave. “Lead on.”

Her smile really did have a way of lighting the day. And warming his blood.

They headed out on a quiet dirt road that led out of town, their horses walking side by side with Merlin springing happily along beside them. Cassidy looked relaxed and comfortable in the saddle. Did she fit in this easily wherever she went?

She bent forward to stroke her horse’s neck, the motion snugging her jeans even tighter against her firm butt. “This is Cherry Blossom, if you can believe it,” she said. “Eddy says she prefers to be called Cherry, and I can see why. You said your palomino is Malibu?”

“Yes. Named by the woman who owned him before me.”

“Suits him. Such a pretty boy.” Her gaze skimmed up from his horse to move across Dave’s torso and end up on his face, a hint of suggestive mischief in her eyes.

“Thanks.” He added quickly, to make it clear he wasn’t flirting, “On his behalf.”

Her lips squeezed together like she was holding back a smile. “How long will it take us to get to . . . what did Robin call it? Riders Boot Camp?”

“Yes, that’s the place her mom runs. It’s about ten miles by highway, only eight by the back roads and trails. It usually takes Robin and me about half an hour, but we move fast. Don’t know how much speed you’re up for.” He cocked an eyebrow.

“I’m up for pretty much anything.” Her striking blue-gray eyes danced, and he got the sense she didn’t just mean riding.

“Uh,” he said awkwardly, “we should let the horses warm up first.” The moment he said those words, he wondered if they could be taken sexually too. He was about to clarify, then figured that would only make things worse.

“Sure,” she said. “My muscles could use a little warming up too.”

Riding muscles, right?

Best to change the subject.

Rafflecopter Giveaway (Three print copies of Love Me Tender)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Spotlight and Giveaway: Love Me Tender by Susan Fox appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
35. You’re Only Young Once

I’ve been in a sort of Margaret Widdemer, sheltered girl finally getting the adventure she’s been wanting mood, so I keep picking up her books, but You’re Only Young Once isn’t in that mold. Instead of a lone, lonely heroine, you have a family of them, plus some brothers, with loving parents in the background. Angela Goldsborough is the eldest, a doll-like singing teacher, one of two daughters who are contributing to the family income. Then Janetta is tall, dark and business-minded, Deborah is dreamy and beautiful, Annice is quiet and quaint, and Isabella is lively and spoiled. All of them are pretty, and none of them lacks male attention — the older sisters draw lots for the parlor in the evening, because all of them are always expecting callers. Each of them gets a romance over the course of the book, and so do two of their three brothers — warm-hearted John and steady, bespectacled Worrel.

With so many young people to dispose of, none of them get very much time. Sometimes that’s fine — I was satisfied with how much I got of Deborah and Isabella, who each had a few extra chapters, post-engagement, and Angela’s story was almost too abrupt to engage me at all. But I would happily have read a whole book about Annice, who comes up with a ridiculous plan that turns out better than she has any right to expect. Or Janetta, who might be my favorite, and who doesn’t allow her marriage to end her career in real estate. And John really only gets half his story told.

All of my complaints boil down to wanting more, though, and that’s barely a criticism.


Tagged: 1910s, margaretwiddemer, romance

0 Comments on You’re Only Young Once as of 11/30/2014 9:42:00 PM
Add a Comment
36. Spotlight and Giveaway: All for You by Jessica Scott

I have an excerpt and giveaway for Jessica Scott’s latest release All for You.  Check it out!

ALL FOR YOU by Jessica Scott (November 25, 2014; Forever Mass Market; $8.00)

Can a battle-scarred warrior . . .
Stay sober. Get deployed. Lead his platoon. Those are the only things that matter to Sergeant First Class Reza Iaconelli. What he wants is for everyone to stay out of his way; what he gets is Captain Emily Lindberg telling him how to deal with his men. Fort Hood’s newest shrink is smart as a whip and sexy as hell. She’s also full of questions-about the army, its soldiers, and the agony etched on Reza’s body and soul.


. . . open his heart to love?
Emily has devoted her life to giving soldiers the care they need-and deserve. Little does she know that means facing down the fierce wall of muscle that is Sergeant Iaconelli like it’s just another day at the office. When Reza agrees to help her understand what makes a soldier tick, she’s thrilled. Too bad it doesn’t help her unravel the sexy warrior in front of her who stokes her desire and touches a part of her she thought long dead. He’s the man who thinks combat is the only escape from the demons that haunt him. The man who needs her most of all . . .

Buy Links:

B&N

Amazon

iBooks

IndieBound


About the author:

USA Today bestselling author Jessica Scott is a career army officer; mother of two daughters, three cats and three dogs; wife to a career NCO and wrangler of all things stuffed and fluffy. She is a terrible cook and even worse housekeeper, but she’s a pretty good shot with her assigned weapon.  She’s currently pursuing a PhD in Sociology in her spare time and most recently, she’s been featured as one of Esquire Magazine‘s Americans of the Year for 2012.
She’s written for the New York Times At War Blog, PBS Point of View: Regarding War Blog, and Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. She deployed to Iraq in 2009 as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom/New Dawn and has served as a company commander at Fort Hood, Texas.


Social Media Links:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

Excerpt:

It was fate. It had to be. A slow warmth unfurled inside him as the doctor he could not get out of his head looked up at him, her cheeks flushing pink.

She was all buttoned up at work. Tonight, she looked different. Looser. Unbound.

Compelling. That’s what she was. Her fire at work. Her refusal to let him bully her. He’d admired her backbone before.

Tonight, he admired her in an entirely new light. Her hair framed her face in careless curls. He hadn’t expected to see her outside of work. He damn sure hadn’t expected to see her here. An old familiar need rose inside him. A need for touch, human and warm. A need to lose himself for an interlude in sweat and sex and stunning pleasure. He’d given up drinking but women had apparently fallen into that category as well.

It had been months since he’d felt a woman’s hands on his body.

This woman was not someone he needed to be talking to at the bar tonight but he found himself walking toward her anyway.

After the week of confrontation they’d had, he’d be lucky if she didn’t slap him the minute he approached her.

He could do this. He could talk to a woman without drinking. Right?

Emily met his gaze as he approached. He almost smiled.

“Not your usual scene?” he asked, leaning against the bar.

She shifted, putting a little space between them. That slight reclamation of power. He made a noise of approval in his throat. “I’m surprised you’re talking to me.”

“I’m surprised you’re here. Shouldn’t you be home reading medical journals or something?” Her cheeks flushed deep pink and he wondered how far down her body that color went.

She tipped her chin then and looked at him. “Have you been drinking?”

He looked down at the bottle in his hand. “I don’t drink anymore,” he said quietly. No reason to delve into his abusive history with alcohol. “You?”

“Glass of wine,” she said.

Reza shrugged and leaned on the bar, taking another pull off his water and being careful not to lean too close. She looked like she’d bolt if he pushed her. “That would explain why you’re talking to me. We haven’t exactly been friendly.”

Her hair reflected the fading sunlight that filled the room from the wide-open patio doors. He wanted to fist it between his fingers, watch her neck arch for his mouth.

She motioned toward his bottle with her glass. “‘Anymore’?”

He simply took another pull off his water. He was going to be damn good and hydrated after tonight. He wondered what she’d do if he leaned a little closer. “Long story.”

“One you’re not keen on sharing?” she asked. She leaned her cheek on one palm. The sun glinted across her cheek.

“Let’s just say alcohol and I aren’t on speaking terms. Bad things happen when I drink.” It was nothing to be ashamed of but there it was. Shame wound up his spine and squeezed the air from his lungs. He was just like his dad after all.

“You say that like giving up alcohol is a bad thing,” Emily said quietly.

Reza snorted softly. He should have guessed she wouldn’t let it alone. She had stubbornness that could last for days. “It’s not something I’m proud of.”

Her hand on his forearm startled him. Soft and strong, her fingers pressed into his skin. “But stopping is something to be proud of.”

Reza stared down at her hand, pale against the dark shadows of his own skin. A long silence hung between them.

He lifted his gaze to hers.

“It takes a lot of strength to break with the past,” she said softly.

“What are you doing?” Her eyes glittered in the setting sun and he thought he caught the sight of the tiniest edge of her lip curling.

Her fingers slipped from his skin. “Offering my professional support?”

His lips quirked. “Was that a joke?”

“Maybe,” she said. “I’m working on developing a biting sense of humor. Defense mechanism against raging asshole commanders.”

Reza barked out a laugh. “You look different out of uniform,” he said lightly, pressing his advantage at this unexpected truce.

“So do you.”

He angled his body toward hers. “You like my makeup?” he asked.

Her lips parting as she tried to figure out if he was kidding or not. Finally, she cracked the barest hint of a smile.

Something powerful woke inside him and he moved before he thought about it. He reached for her, brushing a strand of hair from her cheek. The simple gesture was crushing in its intimacy. Her lips froze in a partial gasp, as though her breath had caught in her throat.

“Sergeant Iaconelli,” she said quietly, her voice husky. But she didn’t move away. Didn’t flinch from his touch.

“Reza.” He swallowed the sharp bite of arousal in his blood, more powerful without the haze of alcohol that usually clouded his reactions. “My name is Reza.”

“Reza.”

His breath was locked in his lungs, the sound of his name on her lips triggering something dark and powerful and overwhelming.

He wanted this woman. The woman who’d stood in opposition to him this week. The woman who lifted her chin and stood steadfast between him and his soldiers.

There was strength in this woman. Strength and courage.

“I’m Emily.” Her words a rushed breath.

He lowered his hand, unwilling to push any further than he’d already gone. This was new territory for him. Unfamiliar and strange and filled with potential and fear.

“It was nice talking to you tonight, Emily,” he said when he could speak.

He waited for her acknowledgment that she’d heard him. Some slight movement of her head or tip of her chin.

Instead her throat moved as she swallowed and she blinked quickly, shattering the spell between them.

He left her then because to push further would challenge the limits of his restraint. He wasn’t ready to fall into bed with someone. No matter how compelling Emily might be.

He waited and he watched for the rest of the evening. Watched her slip out with her friend, leaving an empty space at the bar.

Leaving him alone with the fear that included the empty loneliness as well as the cold silence of sobriety.

His thoughts raced as he made sure his troopers all got home that night, and Teague crashed on his couch.

He fell into bed later, need and desire twisted up, filling the cold dead space left inside him by the lack of alcohol. A dead space he usually filled with work while deployed. Tonight, though, unfamiliar pleasure hunted his thoughts, whispering that he could still love a woman, that he didn’t have to be drunk to climb into bed with someone.

But Emily wasn’t a random someone.

And she was so far out of his league, it wasn’t even funny. Even if there was some sexual attraction there, she wasn’t likely to go slumming with a burned-out infantryman like him.

He lay there in the darkness, waiting, clinging to the single, simple pleasure of her touch, hoping that maybe tonight he could sleep, avoiding the nightmares that reminded him of the monster he’d become.

A beast who had lost his compassion somewhere on the road to Baghdad.

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Spotlight and Giveaway: All for You by Jessica Scott appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
37. Interview and Giveaway: Hope Ramsay, Author of Last Chance Family

Please welcome Hope Ramsay to the virtual offices this morning!

Good morning, Hope! Describe yourself in five words or less.  

[Hope Ramsay] Author and yarn fanatic.

What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

[Hope Ramsay] My reading glasses.  (And I carry my Nook with me everywhere too.  The glasses and e-reader kind of go together.)     

Name three things on your desk right now.

[Hope Ramsay] Photos of my cats (and also the kids and hubby), hand cream, a dry-cleaning claim check for stuff I dropped off almost a month ago.

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

[Hope Ramsay] This is a tricky one, superpowers come with significant down-side risks.  I guess if it were in my power, I’d like to see peace in the Middle-east where everyone is free to practice whatever faith moves them and holy war is a thing of the past.  I don’t know what superpower that might be.   

What are some books that you enjoyed recently?

[Hope Ramsay] I just read Juliet Marillier’s latest books, Assassin’s Quest and Dreamer’s Pool: A Blackthorn & Grim Novel.  I’m a huge Juliet Marillier fan.  She’s on my must buy list.   I recently re-read her entire Sevenwater’s series.  Her heroines are such strong, smart, tough women.  I just love everything she writes.

About LAST CHANCE FAMILY

Mike Taggart has always been willing to take a gamble. But these stakes are just way too high – there’s no way he’s prepared to become a legal guardian to his five-year-old niece. His only option is to head from Las Vegas to Last Chance to sort things out as quickly as possible. Problem is, he arrives to find an inconsolable little girl, her sick cat, and a gorgeous veterinarian he can’t get out of his mind. Charlene Polk has two talents: healing sick critters and falling in love with the wrong men. Mike has trouble written all over him, but she can’t leave him in the lurch. And the more time she spends with the sexy high roller, the more she sees that this ready-made family is the best stroke of luck they’ve ever had . . .

About Hope Ramsay

Hope Ramsay grew up on the North Shore of Long Island, but every summer Momma would pack her off under the care of Aunt Annie to go visiting with relatives in the midlands of South Carolina. Her extended family includes its share of colorful aunts and uncles, as well as cousins by the dozens, who provide the fodder for the characters you’ll find in Last Chance, South Carolina. She’s a two-time finalist in the Golden Heart and is married to a good ol’ Georgia boy who resembles every single one of her heroes. She lives in Fairfax, Virginia, where you can often find her on the back deck, picking on her thirty-five-year-old Martin guitar. 

Hope’s social media

@HopeRamsay

www.HopeRamsay.com

http://facebook.com/Hope.Ramsay

Buy Links

Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/1FapmNm

Books-A-Million: http://bit.ly/1qKhFwx

IndieBound: http://bit.ly/1tb4hwH

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1uOlCA8

Excerpt:

Charlene stood in the kitchen doorway, her hair wet, her stomach empty, and her heart suddenly racing. Mike leaned against the counter, his head hung low. He seemed to be struggling to draw breath.

She crossed the room and put her hand on the middle of his back. His T-shirt was soft, the body beneath it hard and warm.

He straightened and let out a big breath. “Sorry.”

“What’s wrong?”

“Killer heartburn,” he said, then immediately changed the subject. He moved toward the coffee maker, shaking off her touch. “You want some coffee?”

He turned and gave her a quick glance. That’s all it took.

Her heart wrenched, and she responded the way she always did when confronted with unspoken pain. She encountered it often, usually in the eyes of animals. But it was there, beyond that mild-mannered expression he tried to wear. He was hurting. She reached up to stroke his cheek. Her fingers encountered his warm skin and rough stubble. That touch flipped her switch. Electricity flowed inside her.

He closed his eyes and took a deep breath as her fingers moved over his face to his ear and up into his bright red hair.

“Don’t,” he whispered, but he made no attempt to move away. He reminded her of an abused animal that growls when all he wants is a little kindness. She cupped the nape of his neck and pulled him down as she rose up on tip-toes.

She gave him a soft, gentle kiss. Nothing deep or sexy, just a little kiss, intended to comfort. But it didn’t stay that way. Mike grabbed her by the cheeks and pulled her up into it like a man starving for love. His tongue stroked hers. His right hand dropped to her hip, and he yanked her forward and into his chest.

Her knees almost buckled. But she didn’t fall, because Mike had her. His hand found the small of her back as he sagged against the counter. They leaned together, thigh to thigh, chest to chest. The kiss turned utterly carnal. His hand wandered up over her spine to her breast. He palmed it. Her nipples came alive. He groaned.

And her whole body throbbed.

She broke the kiss and looked up into his face. His eyes had dilated with desire. His breath sounded ragged. His skin flushed red.

“I want you,” he said in a hoarse voice. “I want to strip you naked and do it right here in the kitchen.”

His words ignited a bad-girl fire that pretty much torched her reservations about him. “Okay.”

His gaze widened. “I’m not a reliable bet,” he said.

She laughed. “You think I don’t know that?”

“Oh.”

She could almost feel him having second thoughts. And she had no intention of allowing that. She’d have the rest of her life to regret this choice. Or not.

Which would she regret more? Letting her reservations about him put the kibosh on this? Or spending the rest of her life wondering if maybe she should have bet on Mike Taggart?

Heartbreak was her middle name. “I’m a gambler,” she whispered. “And sometimes the long shots pay off.”

“Not usually,” he said.

“Maybe not. But I’m the eternal optimist.”

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Interview and Giveaway: Hope Ramsay, Author of Last Chance Family appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
38. Interview and Giveaway: Marina Adair, Author of Sugar’s Twice as Sweet

This morning Marina Adair dropped by the virtual offices for a chat.  Check out what she has to say, and then enter her awesome giveaway!

Good morning, Marina!  Describe yourself in five words or less.

Hot mess with a sunny disposition. Okay, I know, that’s 6 words, but I’m also an over achiever.

What’s one thing you won’t leave home without?

A book.

Name three things on your desk right now.

Since my bed is essentially my desk, as I spend all day there writing, I will say, my cat Suki, my other cat Awesome Bob, and my reading glasses, because they are so helpful being placed near my laptop instead of on my face J

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

Super metabolism, so I can eat all the mini-doughnuts in the Hostess bag and not get a belly ache.

What are some books that you enjoyed recently?

CHASING TROUBLE by Joya Ryan—super sexy small town with heroes who have so much charm and swagger I melt.

SAVING GRACE by Julie Garwood—this is the fifth time I have read this book and I love it more every time. There is something about a bit of a woman who bring a hulking warrior to his knees.

SUGAR’S TWICE AS SWEET by Marina Adair (November 25, 2014; Forever Mass Market; $6.00)

He’s trouble she doesn’t need . . .
Thanks to a cheating fiancé, Josephina Harrington’s perfect life just crashed and burned. Moving in with her overbearing parents is definitely not an option. No, she needs to prove she can make it on her own. And she will-by turning her great-aunt’s old plantation house into a destination getaway. She’s just not expecting her contractor to be so hands-on-and so totally irresistible.
. . . but everything she wants
Bad-boy golf champion Brett McGraw figured his hometown of Sugar, Georgia was the perfect place to lay low and get his life back up to par. The leggy blonde with a pint-sized pup is the kind of sweet ‘n sassy trouble he never saw coming. She doesn’t know a nut from a bolt and before long, he’s renovating her house . . . as she steals his heart. Can he convince Josephina that his womanizing ways are in the past and he’s ready for forever?


Buy Links:

B&N

Amazon

iTunes

Kobo

GooglePlay


About the author:

Marina Adair is a lifelong fan of romance novels. Along with the Sugar series, she is also the author of the St. Helena Vineyard series. She currently lives in a hundred-year-old log cabin, nestled in the majestic redwoods of the Santa Cruz Mountains, with her husband and daughter.
As a writer, Marina is devoted to giving her readers contemporary romance where the towns are small, the personalities large, and the romance explosive. She also loves to interact with readers and you can catch her on Twitter at @MarinaEAdair or visit her at www.MarinaAdair.com.

Social Media Links:

Website

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

Excerpt:

Three days later, Josephina shoved the last scrap of wallpaper into the trash bag and knew it was quitting time. Her arms were sore from scraping off glue, which was littering the wood floor, she had a big bruise on her forehead from running into Brett’s elbow—and sharing breakfast, lunch, and dinner with a man who made her motor hum only added to her aches.

True to his word, he had asked her out every day. And every day it became harder to say no.

Today had been the worst, she thought as she watched the play of Brett’s muscles while he supported a plank of rotted wood over his head. He was all rippled and gorgeous and flashing that orgasm-inducing smile. The one that curled up slightly at the corners, saying he’d caught her drooling. Again.

“A simple yes is all it would take,” he said in that southern-boy way that made her heart warm. Along with some other, more pertinent, parts.

“I have no idea what you’re talking about.” She stepped sideways, right into a bowl of nails, knocking them over. Then, blaming Brett for taking up too much damn space, she picked up the handsaw off the floor and reached into her back pocket for a pair of gloves—coming up empty.

“I’ve got an extra pair in my tool belt,” he said with humor in his voice as he jerked his chin toward his goodie bag, um, tool belt. “Right there in the center pocket. You see them?”

Oh, she saw them all right. She also saw how incredibly amused he was.

“Don’t move.” Eyeing him, she cautiously reached into the pocket, careful not to touch any of his tools. She grabbed the leather gloves and jerked her hand back.

Doing her best to ignore his laughing, she crawled up to the fifth rung of the ladder and sawed away the remaining few inches of beam. Between the sexy smiles and “accidental” brushing of bodies, Brett kept her in a constant state of unbalance.

“So to clarify, you’re saying you don’t want to go out with me,” he mused.

She sighed, sawing through the end of the beam and wondering why she kept repeating herself. “Dating wouldn’t be a good idea.”

“Why is that?” he asked, lowering the beam to the floor.

This time she was certain he was flexing his arms on purpose.

“Because we’d go out, have a good time, come home, and have sex. Only instead of just amazing no-strings sex it would be complicated by all this other stuff, which would make things weird. Eventually I’d be short one contractor, miss my opening date, and wonder what happened.”

Not wanting to look at him, she set the saw on the top of the ladder, ready to move to the next spot.

“First off, I’m in this for the long haul, I gave you my word on that.”

Josephina turned around to ask him if he was talking about the inn, but then she forgot how to speak. Brett blocked her descent, climbing up behind her to the second rung, which brought him eye level. He gripped her hips and backed her up against the ladder. “And, sugar, sex between us wouldn’t be amazing, it would be earth-shattering.”

That’s what I’m afraid of.

He sculpted his hands down her sides to her thighs, paying extra attention to her bottom on the trip back. She rested her hands on those biceps she’d been watching all week so she wouldn’t fall over as the air whooshed out of her lungs.

Hell, she’d suffered from severe oxygen deprivation since the minute she found him this morning, standing on the front porch, latte in one hand, a cheese Danish in the other, and the sun cresting behind him.

The man redefined “sexy contractor.” The faded college T-shirt clung to his impressive chest. And the hotter it got, the clingier the material became. Which was why four o’clock was Josephina’s new favorite time of day. It was when Brett shucked his shirt. And the tool belt he wore weighed down his jeans, giving her a prime view of chiseled abs and lean hips, and highlighting his yummy parts.

And that wasn’t even the most tempting part. Nope. The more she saw Brett as a normal hot guy, the more the never-going-to-date-him rule seemed to blur, and the harder he became to resist.

“I suck at relationships,” she rushed out, more for her than him. “I get so lost in the other person that Josephina goes MIA. I can’t do that again. Not now when people are counting on me. When I’m counting on me.”

“It’s just a date, Joie. I’m not down on one knee.” He sounded so sincere her heart pounded as if he were.

“Date implies the start of something, and you’re leaving.” And if I let you, you might take my heart with you when you go. “And I’m staying here, in Sugar.”

With a single nod, Brett let her slide past him on the ladder.

He wasn’t giving up, not by a long shot, she could see that in his eyes. But he was letting it go—for now.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Interview and Giveaway: Marina Adair, Author of Sugar’s Twice as Sweet appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
39. Spotlight and Giveaway: A Cursed Bloodline by Cecy Robson

This morning I have an excerpt and giveaway for Cecy Robson’s latest release A Cursed Bloodline.  Enjoy!

A Cursed Bloodline

Weird Girls # 4

By: Cecy Robson

Releasing November 18th, 2014

Loveswept

Blurb

The Weird Girls return in another edge-of-your-seat novel from Cecy Robson! Just when Celia thinks the supernatural world can’t turn deadlier, a new rival emerges, proving just how dangerous a power-hungry were can be.

Since being cursed with unique abilities, Celia Wird and her three sisters have fought the most bloodthirsty preternaturals in the Lake Tahoe region. But Celia’s greatest threat is someone she would have never suspected: Anara, a werewolf Elder who has allowed his hatred for Celia to spiral out of control. In a play for dominance, Anara tortures Celia and gives her an ultimatum: sever her mate bond with pureblood were Aric—or Anara will kill everyone she loves.

From the instant they met, Celia and Aric have shared an attraction that cannot be tamed. So keeping Aric away is impossible, and Aric would sooner die than allow anyone to hurt the woman he loves. Misha, master vampire and Celia’s sworn protector, also finds his way into the chaos, seeking blood from those who have harmed her.

Now Celia and her sisters are caught in the middle of a war driven by lust, fueled by hatred, and destined to end in tragedy. For Anara is a force to be reckoned with, and he will not succumb without robbing Celia of those who hold her heart.

Praise for the Weird Girls series

“One of my favorite books series . . . so much action, so much violence and, oh, the lust radiating off of our heroes . . . I definitely recommend this series for lovers of all things paranormal and awesome.”—USA Today

“[With Robson’s] edgy, witty and modern style of storytelling, the reader will be drawn deep into this quirky paranormal world. . . . Strong pacing, constant action and distinctive, appealing characters—including a gutsy heroine—will no doubt keep you invested.”—RT Book Reviews

“A healthy dose of humor, a heaping dash of the supernatural, and a pinch of mystery all laced with a heavy dollop of action . . . Robson knows how to combine all the best ingredients to keep her readers hooked and begging for another hit.”—Fresh Fiction

Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2014/09/a-cursed-bloodline-weird-girls-4-by.html

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22309931-a-cursed-bloodline?from_search=true

Buy Links : Amazon | Barnes | iBooks | Kobo

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Cursed-Bloodline-Weird-Girls-Novel-ebook/dp/B00KK0PJLK/ref=sr_sp-atf_title_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1410217185&sr=1-1&keywords=a+cursed+bloodline

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-cursed-bloodline-cecy-robson/1119609453?ean=9780553394580

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/a-cursed-bloodline/id882281135?mt=11

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/a-cursed-bloodline

Author Info

Cecy Robson is the New Adult author of Once Perfect, Once Loved, and Once Pure and the award-winning author of the Weird Girls urban fantasy romance series. A self-proclaimed professional napper, Cecy counts among her talents a jaw-dropping knowledge of useless trivia, the ability to make her hair big, and a knack for breaking into song despite her family’s vehement protests. A full-time writer, registered nurse, wife, and mother living in the Great Northwest, Cecy enjoys spending time with her family and silencing the yappy characters in her head by telling their stories.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Website: http://www.cecyrobson.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Cecy.Robson.Author

Twitter: https://twitter.com/cecyrobson

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6177334.Cecy_Robson

Excerpt:

I turned to Misha. “I don’t want to see Aric. Please ask him to leave—nicely.”

Misha angled his head, surprised by my request. Given that he hated Aric, I didn’t need to ask twice. My sisters stumbled into the bathroom, where he had directed them on his way out. They screamed when they saw me.

Aric’s growls returned full force. “What’s happening?”

Shayna veered back toward the stairs. “You have to find Emme. Celia’s in really bad shape!”

Taran approached me slowly, like she’d never seen me before. “Son of a bitch, Celia. What did this to you?” She reached to touch my face, only to yank it back as if it stung.

Tears streamed down Shayna’s cheeks. I didn’t want to lie to them, but I had to keep them safe. “I swung by the house to get some things. A pack of wolves broke in and attacked me.”

Taran clasped her hand over her jaw. “Shit. Did you kill them?”

I lowered my head. “No. I was no match for them.”

Taran took in the mangled mess of my face. “How the hell did you get away?”

I was a horrible liar. “I didn’t, they left me there when they were done.”

Shayna’s slender frame hunched and her long, silky black ponytail seemed to droop. She wiped her blue eyes on the sleeve of her white tunic. “Why would they just leave you like that?”

“You mean instead of just killing me?” I hated scaring them, but I wanted them to stop talking. I shrugged. “I don’t know, I guess because they could.”

Sleet splattered against the window and skylights, but it did little to muffle Misha and Aric. Damn, they were both furious. And Misha carrying the scent of his arousal from his snack time with me only made matters worse.

What did you do to her?” Aric demanded.

I could almost picture Misha’s wicked smile. “Tending to her wounds required me to taste her, and so I did.”

There was some scuffling and growling. The wolves were struggling to hold back Aric.

“Aric, listen to me,” Liam grunted. “Celia was still bleeding when we arrived.”

I’m not leaving until I see her.” Aric’s deep timbre rang with anger, but Liam’s words appeared to have stopped him from killing Misha. I was surprised Misha didn’t rub his feasting more in Aric’s face. Maybe he didn’t want to upset me . . . or maybe he preferred that Aric jump to his own conclusions.

“Celia does not desire your presence, canine. Can you fault her? How many times have you reduced her to tears?”

A stillness grew over the worsening weather. “Those times are behind us,” Aric growled. “Whether you like it or not, my future lies with her.”

Rafflecopter Giveaway ($25.00 eGift Card to Choice Book Seller and Loveswept Mug & Tote)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Spotlight and Giveaway: A Cursed Bloodline by Cecy Robson appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
40. A Lot Further Down The Romance Road

Back in 2012, I found Daughter of Smoke and Bone to be both romance and fantasy, two genres I'm not fond of in and of themselves. I need something more in those genres, such as a strong character, or, in the case of Daughter of Smoke and Bone, a mystery. Who was the main character, Karou? Why was the guy with the wings always hanging around her? There was a journey thing going on, as Karou discovered who and what she was. I can't find a post on Days of Blood and Starlight, the second book in the trilogy, but I recall feeling it was a connector, which second books in trilogies often are.

Dreams of Gods and Monsters, the last book in the trilogy, is more clearly a romance. There's various other things going on, but the real significant storyline here is all about Karou and Akiva. Their eyes meet across a crowd. There are many paragraphs about kissing. Lots of relationship stuff. There are teases for the reader, too. Will they kiss? Someone shows up at the cave opening and No! The kiss is off! Will they get together for some real hot and heavy stuff? Oh, they're getting closer...closer...No! Akiva has disappeared!

You can probably tell I'm not that keen on Karou and Akiva anymore. No, Liraz was my big interest in this book. I won't tell you who she gets together with because that's the best surprise.

The Significance Of Romance And Marketing "Gods And Monsters"

 

I happened to read A Billion-dollar Affair in the Oct. 24 issue of Entertainment Weekly while I was reading Dreams of Gods and Monsters. Sales of romance are huge, there's an enormous market. At the same time, though, author Karen Valby says the "long-ridiculed" genre is "dismissed by the critical mass." As a result, I started wondering how Dreams of Gods and Monsters is being marketed. Is it being promoted as a fantasy or paranormal romance, which could bring it to a large and appreciative audience? Or is it being marketed as something else, perhaps to avoid the romance label?

In a USA Today interview, Taylor talks about working on a short story for a romance anthology, so she thinks of romance as a genre she works within, at least some of the time
. I think there is a romance thing going on in the publisher's marketing of the book, but it's subtle. The publisher's copy at its website includes the line "They begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves--maybe even toward love." There's also talk of various beings fighting, striving, loving, and dying.

Wait. I just realized. My romance reading is limited to historical mysteries with couple characters. I don't read advertising copy for romance novels. "They begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves--maybe even toward love" may be exactly how a romance novel is marketed.

Dreams of Gods and Monsters is a Cybils nominee in the Young Adult Speculative Fiction category.
From the streets of Rome to the caves of the Kirin and beyond, humans, chimaera, and seraphim will fight, strive, love, and die in an epic theater that transcends good and evil, right and wrong, friend and enemy. - See more at: http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/laini-taylor/dreams-of-gods-monsters/9780316134071/#desc
They begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves--maybe even toward love. - See more at: http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/laini-taylor/dreams-of-gods-monsters/9780316134071/#desc
They begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves--maybe even toward love. - See more at: http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/laini-taylor/dreams-of-gods-monsters/9780316134071/#desc
They begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves--maybe even toward love. - See more at: http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/laini-taylor/dreams-of-gods-monsters/9780316134071/#desc
They begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves--maybe even toward love. - See more at: http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/laini-taylor/dreams-of-gods-monsters/9780316134071/#desc
They begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves--maybe even toward love. - See more at: http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/laini-taylor/dreams-of-gods-monsters/9780316134071/#desc

0 Comments on A Lot Further Down The Romance Road as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
41. Novella Review: Sweet Cowboy Christmas by Candis Terry

 

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

I have been struggling with this review, and I don’t know why.  I thoroughly enjoyed Sweet Cowboy Christmas, but I just can’t seem to put my thoughts down in any coherent manner, so I will instead give you my Top 5 reasons why you should read it

1.  This romance will put you in the mood for the holidays.  I read it last week, and afterwards, I was geeked for the holiday season.  Christmas plays a big part in the story, because Chase lost his father on Christmas years ago.  He’s still not over his loss, and he dreads the holidays, because he certainly doesn’t share in the holiday cheer that surrounds him.  Faith loves Christmas and giving to others, so she wants to help Chase regain his love for the holidays

2.  Both Chase and Faith are running unsuccessfully from their pasts.  Chase can’t get over the loss of his father, and now he’s just had a health scare himself.  He’s not sure who he is anymore, because he’s been told he has to give up his fast-paced, stressful life or he’s not going to be around much longer.  Faith is still smarting from a romance gone bad.  Her ex belittled her and she still hasn’t recovered her confidence after his contemptuous treatment of her.

3.  Chase is a caring guy, who realizes a good thing when he sees it.  When he learns that Faith’s confidence is still suffering from her past disastrous relationship, he isn’t shy about letting her know how special she is.

4.  The interactions between Chase and Faith are humorous, sweet, and romantic.  The ranch setting is the perfect backdrop for their budding romance.  How can galloping across a field and then sharing a kiss not be romantic?

5.  Sweet Cowboy Christmas is a novella, so you don’t have to invest a lot of time to reach the happy ending.  This is a great choice if you have some free time in between your own holiday preparations.  Who knows?  It may even get you in the mood to put out some extra Christmas decorations.

Grade:  B+

Review copy provided by publisher

From Amazon:

Mistletoe, holly, and cowboys, oh my! Christmas in Texas has never been sweeter.

Years ago, Chase Morgan traded in his dusty cowboy boots for the shimmering lights of New York City and a fast track up the corporate ladder. But when his shiny life is turned on end just in time for Christmas, Chase knows he needs to reevaluate—even if that means going home to Texas to endure his least favorite holiday.

When Mr. Tall, Dark, and Smoking-Hot walks through her door at the Magic Box Guest Ranch, Faith Walker sees just another handsome, rich exec looking to play cowboy for a week—at her expense. She’s sure the grumpy-but-sexy-as-hell Scrooge will put a crimp in her holly jolly plans. Until a sizzling kiss has her seeing him in a new light.

Chase is haunted by secrets, and even though it goes entirely against her “hands off the guests” rule, Faith is tempted to help him leave the past behind. As the magic of the season swirls around them, she is determined to succeed, because now she is certain one sweet cowboy Christmas will never be enough.

The post Novella Review: Sweet Cowboy Christmas by Candis Terry appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
42. Interview and Giveaway: Jennifer Delamere, Author of A Bride for the Season

Please welcome Jennifer Delamere to the virtual offices this morning!

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

[Jennifer Delamere] Travel-loving history geek

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

[Jennifer Delamere] My CamelBak water bottle. I’m a big believer in the benefits of drinking lots of water.

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

[Jennifer Delamere] My RITA® finalist pin (taped to my computer);

a coffee cup filled with bookmarks from my favorite authors;

an engraved silver bookmark with the George Eliot quote: “It is never too late to be what you might have been.”

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

[Jennifer Delamere] I’d stop time long enough to catch up on my writing and all my home projects!

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

[Jennifer Delamere] “The Anatomist’s Wife” by Anna Lee Huber; “The Girl Who Came Home,” by Hazel Gaynor; “Sailing Out of Darkness,” by Normandie Fischer

About A BRIDE FOR THE SEASON

London’s most scandalous bachelor has finally gone too far. Caught in a situation that was innocent but too compromising, James Simpson is forced to admit that he must do the honorable thing and marry the lady. Unfortunately, marriage alone will not be enough to appease her father. He won’t agree to a dowry unless James can find a suitable husband for the lady’s elder sister-the shy and awkward Lucinda Cardington.
Lucinda doesn’t care that she is close to being “on the shelf”; she has more serious pursuits in mind. She enjoys the friendship she and James share over their love of photography, but she leaves dreams of romance to silly young ladies like her sister. James does manage to find a match for Lucinda, and his efforts to get them together are about to succeed…until James comes to the distressing realization that he doesn’t want Lucinda in anyone’s arms but his own.

Amazon

B&N

iTunes

BAM!

Goodreads

About Jennifer Delamere

The youngest child of a Navy pilot and a journalist, Jennifer acquired a love of adventure and an excitement for learning that continues to this day. She’s lived in three countries and traveled throughout theU.S. An avid reader of classics and historical fiction, she also enjoys biographies and histories, which she mines for the vivid details to bring to life the characters and places in her books. She resides with her husband in North Carolina–where, when not writing or dreaming up romantic adventures for her characters, she can be found fantasizing about her next ski trip or European vacation.

Facebook

Twitter

Website

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Interview and Giveaway: Jennifer Delamere, Author of A Bride for the Season appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
43. Sublime: Review

Sublime is a dark, atmospheric romance. It’s the story of a living boy and a ghost who fall in love, but more than that it’s about the lengths someone will go to be with the person they love. There were things I liked and things I didn’t, but overall I thought it was a very romantic, unique paranormal romance. The best part about this book were the two main characters. The chapters switch between Lucy and Colin’s perspectives, and I think each character is given equal depth. I was especially surprised by Colin. He was sensitive and likable, even when he did stupid things (like crazy bike stunts that break his arm). A lot of times when I read young adult books I don’t feel like the boys come across as authentic, but Colin did effortlessly. He thought and acted like a teenage boy. His chapters were some of the... Read more »

The post Sublime: Review appeared first on The Midnight Garden.

Add a Comment
44. Novella Review: Can’t Wait by Jennifer Ryan

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

Kicking off the holiday reading season, I picked up Can’t Wait by Jennifer Ryan because I liked the cover and because it has one of my favorite tropes.  I can’t get enough stories with the heroine falling for her brother’s best friend.  The setting didn’t hurt either; all of the action takes place on a ranch in Montana.  While Montana would not be my first choice if I were to ever relocate (the winters last forever!), the whole ranch thing is so appealing to me that it makes me giddy.  Working with and around horses all day long seems so much better than herding IT professionals on a daily basis.

Summer has fallen so hard for her brother’s best friend that she’s had to move out of the main house and into the smaller cabin on the ranch by herself because being so close to him is driving her crazy.  The flirting and longing looks she casts in Caleb’s direction should be clear for everyone to see.  Everyone but Caleb, it seems.  He’s not taking the bait, no matter how hard she casts her lures.  She’s at her wits end and decides to take a different route; to heck with the subtle approach, she’s going to let him know exactly how she feels.

Caleb is far from indifferent to Summer, but because he owes so much to Jack, he can’t go after his best friend’s sister.  Jack kept him sane and alive during his stint in the military, and now Caleb is helping Jack run his ranch. He has too much to lose if things don’t work out with Summer, but the temptation is driving him to distraction.  But being a man of honor, he can’t allow himself to show his interest in her.

I really liked Summer because she is a woman who knows what she wants, and she’s not afraid to go after it.  She knows that they would be good together, if Caleb would only give her a chance.  Summer isn’t just working against Caleb’s sense of honor, she’s also battling his PTSD.  Both Caleb and Jack saw and did terrible things while overseas, and they are both haunted by the experience.  Caleb’s distress is so severe he can’t sleep at night, but once he opens his feelings to Summer, she gives him a sense of peace he had been lacking.  She becomes his anchor, something that he desperately needed.

The story takes place in the run up to Christmas, and Summer’s holiday traditions are seamlessly incorporated into the action.  Who wouldn’t want to go on a snowy trail ride in search of the perfect Christmas tree?  The snowball fight I could have lived without, but only because of my aversion to being cold and wet.  I was definitely in the holiday mood by the time I finished reading Can’t Wait.

Grade:  B

Review copy provided by publisher

From Amazon:

Originally appeared in the e-book anthology All I Want for Christmas Is a Cowboy.

Jennifer Ryan, author of the New York Times bestselling The Hunted Series and the upcoming Montana Men Series, takes us to the very beginning in this Christmas prequel about two people who finally receive the one thing they’ve always wanted … each other.

Though she is the woman of his dreams, Caleb Bowden knows his best friend’s sister, Summer Turner, is off-limits. He won’t cross that line. Summer shares a connection with Caleb she’s never felt with anyone else, but the stubborn man refuses to turn their flirtatious friendship into something more. Summer will have to take matters into her own hands if she wants her cowboy for Christmas.

The post Novella Review: Can’t Wait by Jennifer Ryan appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
45. Guest Post and Giveaway: Tina Wainscott, Author of Wild Nights

Welcome Tina Wainscott back to the virtual offices!

Top 5 things you would never find in Saxby’s duffle bag by Tina Wainscott

Saxby Cole is a Southern charmer, dubbed the “prince of Cole, Louisiana” by the ladies in his hometown. While he was supposed to head up his family’s grill company, Sax is all about doing bigger things … like fighting for his country. And now, fighting for justice outside the bounds of the law. He’s been told, since he was knee-high to a mudbug, that Cole men are incapable of monogamy, so Sax is committed to never committing and breaking a lady’s heart.

I’m going to let Sax himself tell you the Top 5 things you would never find in his duffle bag:

“One of those protein bars. Haven’t found one yet that tastes like food and doesn’t remind me of MRE’s—meals ready to eat. That’s the stuff we ate when we were deployed, like spaghetti in a bag. If I’m throwing a snack in there, it’s a Snickers bar. Chocolate, caramel, and peanuts … all good.”

“Sweatpants. Not that I’m a prima donna or anything, but baggy ole sweats are just damned ugly. And I don’t like them on a lady either.”

“Flip flops. While I’m no pretty boy, I do value a classy pair of shoes. Flip flops are for girls, sissies, or surfers.”

“A care package from my sisters. Man, did I get teased about that when I was in the SEALs. They’d pack obnoxious things like nose hair clippers, a portable urine holder, and homemade cookies with smiley faces on them and goofy sayings. It was sweet but embarrassing at the same time.”

“A CD with a love song mix. I don’t do mushy music. For one thing, if I’m with a lady, it gives her ideas. And it makes me kinda sad, too, that I won’t have that ‘everlasting love’ thing. You know who has sexy music without it being obvious? Led Zeppelin. Yep, some Zepp, some Kings of Leon, a little Maroon 5, and we’re rockin’.”

 

Wild Nights

The Justiss Alliance #3

By: Tina Wainscott

Releasing: Nov 4th, 2014

Loveswept

Blurb

The courageous men of USA Today bestselling author Tina Wainscott’s Justiss Alliance series never give up and never make a promise they can’t live up to—especially when love is on the line.

The only commitment Saxby Cole has ever made is to the SEALs. He follows a long line of Southern charmers who swear monogamy isn’t in their blood. He’s never met a woman who made him want to swear his allegiance—until, while undercover for a Justiss Alliance assignment, he finds a woman who makes him think twice.

When Jennessy Shaw’s boyfriend dumps her right before their vacation to a hedonistic Caribbean resort, she goes without him to explore her wild side. Throwing caution to the wind, she propositions Saxby—only to suffer his gentle rejection.

When she wakes in Saxby’s room with no memory of the night before, Jennessy discovers his real purpose: to sniff out an operation where women like her are drugged and prostituted to resort guests. She goes from victim to his investigative partner . . . but getting too close to the sexier-than-sin Saxby may be her wildest move yet.

Praise for the Justiss Alliance series

“Tina Wainscott delivers high-octane suspense and red-hot romance! Full of edge-of-your-seat action and red-hot passion, Wild on You is a souped-up roller coaster of a page-turner.”—Julie Ann Walker, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Black Knights Inc. series

“Bad boys breaking rules and hearts and dishing up justice—Tina Wainscott nails it!”—New York Times bestselling author Cindy Gerard

Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2014/08/wild-nights-justiss-alliance-3-by-tina.html

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22234180-wild-nights

Buy Links

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00KAFVOGE?ie=UTF8&tag=randohouseinc-20&linkCode=xm2&camp=1789&creativeASIN=B00KAFVOGE

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wild-nights-tina-wainscott/1119471240?ean=9780345548368&itm=1&usri=9780345548368&cm_mmc=Random%20House-_-Wild%20Nights-RandomHouse-9780345548368-_-Wild%20Nights-RandomHouse-9780345548368-_-Wild%20Nights-RandomHouse-9780345548368

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/wild-nights-6

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/wild-nights/id877158042?mt=11

Or, Purchase at Amazon | Barnes | iBooks | Kobo

Author Info

USA Today bestselling author Tina Wainscott has always loved the combination of romance and suspense, because nothing complements falling in love better than being hunted down. The author of more than thirty novels and novellas, Wainscott creates characters with baggage, past hurts, and vulnerabilities. They go through hell, find love, and, at the end, find peace in who they are and everything they’ve gone through. And isn’t that what everyone wants?

Author Links

Website: http://www.tinawainscott.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tinawainscottbooks
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Tina_Wainscott
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4731539.Tina_Wainscott

Or,

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Rafflecopter Giveaway ($25.00 Choice Book Seller eGift Card and Loveswept Mug & Tote)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Guest Post and Giveaway: Tina Wainscott, Author of Wild Nights appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
46. Candis Terry’s 12 Days of Sweet Blog Tour

Please join in as we celebrate Candis Terry’s 12 DAYS OF SWEET BLOG TOUR!  Be sure to visit the other blogs on the tour. I have two giveaways for you to enter, too!

DAY 4:

Allison Lane Wilder (from Something Sweeter)

The day I met Jesse Wilder I never dreamed I’d be the one to take Sweet, Texas’ favorite playboy off the market. Yet that’s exactly what happened even though we didn’t start out exactly liking each other. Stripping him down and having my way with him? Now that’s another matter. After all, how could I resist him? And while I may have once been the queen of party planning, I’ve never been that great in the kitchen. Jesse’s much better in the kitchen (or anywhere for that matter). But this is a recipe that’s pretty easy to make and isn’t overly sweet. I’ll let the something sweeter be him. And as the old saying goes, I’m happy to let him eat crackers—and cookies—in my bed. Any day. Any time.

Wilder Shortbread Cookies

Yield:

24-30 cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup butter, softened

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup icing sugar or 1/2 cup powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)

1/4 cup red maraschino cherry

1/4 cup green maraschino cherry

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

  • In a mixing bowl and using an electric mixer, combine butter, flour, icing sugar and vanilla extract; mix until mixture is a smooth consistency.

  • Prepare cookie sheets with parchment paper.

  • Spoon out dough onto parchment lined cookie sheets by teaspoonfuls or by tablespoons for larger cookies, spacing about 2 inches apart.

  • Cut maraschino cherries into quarters and place one piece in the middle of each cookie, alternating with red and green cherries.

  • Bake in preheated 350 F oven for 13 to 15 minutes or until bottom of cookies are lightly browned. Do not overbake.

  • Remove from oven and let cool on cookie sheet for about 5 minutes.

  • Transfer onto wire racks to finish cooling.

  • Store in a container with a lid and separate each layer with wax paper.

NOTE:

  • If you wish to add some extra flavor to the cookies, add 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract or almond extract.

  • Use sprinkles, half an almond or half a cashew or chocolate to the top of the cookies before baking.

  • Press a thumbprint in the cookie and fill with your choice of jam.

Exclusive Twelve Days of Sweet Giveaway

Leave a comment sharing the Holiday Dish/Desert/Drink you ‘Pass On’ every year, with a Valid Email Address, to be entered to win a Sweet Texas Series Romance of the winner’s choosing and Box of Candy straight from the lovely state of Idaho.

Sweet Cowboy Christmas
Sweet, Texas # 3.5

By: Candis Terry

Releasing November 25th, 2014

Avon Impulse

Blurb

Mistletoe, holly, and cowboys, oh my! Christmas in Texas has never been sweeter.
Years ago, Chase Morgan traded in his dusty cowboy boots for the shimmering lights of New York City and a fast track up the corporate ladder. But when his shiny life is turned on end just in time for Christmas, Chase knows he needs to reevaluate even if that means going home to Texas to endure his least favorite holiday.
When Mr. Tall, Dark, and Smoking Hot walks through her door at the Magic Box Guest Ranch, Faith Walker sees just another handsome, rich exec looking to play cowboy for a week-at her expense. She’s sure the grumpy, but sexy as hell Scrooge will put a crimp in her holly jolly plans. Until a sizzling kiss has her seeing him in a new light.
Chase is haunted by secrets, and even though it goes entirely against her “hands off the guests” rule Faith is tempted to help him leave the past behind. As the magic of the season swirls around them, she is determined to succeed because now she is certain one sweet, cowboy Christmas will never be enough

Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2014/10/sweet-cowboy-christmas-sweet-texas-35.html

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22552585-sweet-cowboy-christmas?from_search=true

Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes | iTunes | Kobo

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Sweet-Cowboy-Christmas-Texas-Novella-ebook/dp/B00L1AK6CA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1414523533&sr=8-1&keywords=Sweet+Cowboy+Christmas

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/sweet-cowboy-christmas-candis-terry/1120159648?ean=9780062380296

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/sweet-cowboy-christmas/id890047235?mt=11

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/sweet-cowboy-christmas

Author Info

Candis Terry was born and raised near the sunny beaches of Southern California and now makes her home on an Idaho farm. She’s experienced life in such diverse ways as working in a Hollywood recording studio to chasing down wayward steers. Only one thing has remained the same: her passion for writing stories about relationships, the push and pull in the search for love, and the security one finds in their own happily ever after.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Website: http://www.candisterry.com/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CandisTerry

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/CandisTerry

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4935263.Candis_Terry

Excerpt

“Anger and regret don’t change anything,” he said. “Haven’t you ever heard the saying, ‘the best revenge is to live well and be happy’?”

“You’re not at all who I think you are,” she said, her eyes squinting. “Are you?”

“I hope not.”

For a long moment, they stood there, gazes locked, the air around them thickening.

He took that last step closer to her. Simply because he couldn’t have stopped himself if he’d tried.

Then he did exactly what he’d promised himself he wouldn’t do. He reached out his hand and gently cupped her cheek. Her thick, dark lashes fluttered as she looked up at him. But she did not pull away. Unable to fight the desire burning through his blood, he lowered his head and pressed his lips to hers.

To his surprise and absolute satisfaction, she slid her hands up his chest, wrapped her lovely arms around his neck, and leaned into his kiss.

As she lifted to her toes, her full breasts pressed into his chest, and a hot zap of lust spiked deep in his groin. His arms went around her, pulling her closer just as her moist mouth parted and let him in.

When their tongues met, a surge of pleasure so different from anything he’d ever felt before lit him up inside. Kissing Faith was like the Fourth of July and Christmas morning all rolled into one. In the warm recess of her mouth, their tongues tangled, danced, and made love. Chase could have stood there all day, holding her in his arms, kissing her until she moaned with the need of something more.

When she did just that, he gathered his wits and ended the kiss by once more pressing his mouth to the center of her luscious lips, then one to her forehead.

With a sigh, she stepped away, and his arms were instantly void of the pleasure of her warmth.

“Why did you kiss me?” she asked.

“Because I wanted to. Why did you kiss me back?”

She grinned. “Because I wanted to.”

He returned the gesture. “Then we’d better be prepared. Because I’m guessing there are probably more where that one came from.”

She flashed a come-and-get-me grin as she spun on the heels of those worn-down boots, and said, “A girl can only hope.”

Rafflecopter Giveaway (Grand Prize: Print or Digital Set of SWEET, TEXAS Series (Bks 1-3) and $25.00 Amazon Gift Card)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Candis Terry’s 12 Days of Sweet Blog Tour appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
47. Spotlight and Giveaway: Twice Tempted by Eileen Dreyer

I am in the middle of Twice Tempted, and my project for the rest of the day is to finish reading it.  Check back soon for a review!

About TWICE TEMPTED:

Fiona Ferguson’s troubles began with a kiss . . . 

It feels like a lifetime ago that Alex Knight saved Fiona from certain doom . . . and stole a soul-shattering kiss for good measure. Wanting nothing more than to keep her safe, he left her in the care of her grandfather, the Marquess of Dourne. But Fiona was hardly safe. As soon as he could, the marquess cast her and her sister out on the streets with only her wits to keep them alive. Alex has never forgotten that long-ago kiss. Now the dashing spy is desperate to make up for failing his duty once before. This time he will protect Fiona once and for all, from a deadly foe bent on taking revenge on the Ferguson line-and anyone who stands in the way . . .

About Eileen Dreyer:

New York Times best-selling author Eileen Dreyer has won five RITA Awards from the Romance Writers of America, which secures her  fourth place in the Romance Writers of America prestigious Hall of Fame. Eileen is an addicted traveler, having sung in some of the best Irish pubs in the world.  Eileen also writes as Kathleen Korbel and has over three million books in print worldwide. Born and raised in Missouri, she lives in St. Louis County with her husband Rick and her two children.

Eileen’s social media:

@EileenDreyer

http://www.EileenDreyer.com

http://facebook.com/EileenDreyer

Buy links:

Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1FasQzq

Books-A-Million: http://bit.ly/1ukNFH7

IndieBound: http://bit.ly/1xon12i

Amazon: http://amzn.to/11MnbDz

Excerpt:

He arched an eyebrow. “Lord Whitmore again? Please, Fiona. Don’t do that to me. When I hear Lord Whitmore, I think of my uncle, who had six fingers and thought bathing was a trick of the devil.”

She giggled. “I can understand your wanting to maintain the distinction.”

“Every time you call me Lord Whitmore, I will call you Eloise.”

She glared at him, the curtains clutched to her chest like bedclothes, as if she were a maiden in threat of seduction. “You wouldn’t.”

He shrugged. “It is your name. Lady Eloise Fiona Ferguson Hawes.”

“No one knows,” she hissed.

He leaned in very close. “I do.”

She reared back and almost tipping the ladder again. “That is patently unfair.”

He shrugged and reached up for the curtains. “All is fair in love and safety.”

She refused to budge. “I do not believe that is precisely the quote.”

Grinning, he put his foot on the second rung, just beneath her. “Close enough.”

And then he made the mistake of looking into her eyes. Her blue, blue eyes that were suddenly black with arousal. He heard the sharp intake of her breath and saw the erratic pulse beating at the base of her long white throat.

His own body reacted just as it had every time he’d gotten close to her. He focused in on her, his grip on her tightening. Still she didn’t move, caught in the circle of his free arm, her hip pressed against his chest, her mouth just above his. All he had to do was climb another rung, and he could satisfy a four-year-old craving.

His heart was galloping suddenly, and he could feel a bead of sweat roll down his back. He could see a glow on her forehead, her upper lip. Her eyes widened, as if she could read his thoughts, and he could scent something new. Arousal. Need. Hunger. His own body was shaking with it. He swore his cock had taken on a life of its own, and his brain simply shut down.

He leaned a bit closer, his foot still on the step beneath her and paused, giving her a chance to escape, to clout him in the head if necessary. She didn’t. She watched him the way prey might a raptor, unsure and wary. He didn’t blame her. He wasn’t certain how much control he had over himself. It had been so long since he’d had a woman. So much longer since he’d really liked the one he had.

Slowly, so he didn’t startle her into tipping the ladder, he rose up and set his other foot on the rung. She was frozen in place, one hand fisted around the blood-deep velvet, the other clenched against the ladder, as if she was still uncertain whether to use it.

She didn’t. She inhaled, her mouth opening just a bit, as if there wasn’t enough air. As if she were struggling to stay afloat.

Sink, Alex wanted to say as he lifted himself face-to-face with her, mouth-to-mouth. Sink into me.

“I knew it!” a voice screeched behind him, shattering the moment. “What did I tell you about lettin’ them jackanapes in here?”

Fiona reared back, as if he’d attacked her, again throwing the ladder off balance. Alex instinctively pulled back to stabilize them. He pulled back too far and the ladder tipped.

There was a lot of yelling and a couple of muffled thuds as Alex landed on his back, cushioning Fiona’s fall. He wasn’t so lucky.

“Are you all right?” Fiona asked immediately, leaning over him.

“Serves him right,” the housekeeper snapped from the doorway.

He had hit his head so hard he was seeing stars. But he was smelling cinnamon and Fiona, so he really couldn’t complain

“That is enough, Mrs. Quick,” he heard. “Alex? Your eyes are open. Can you hear me?”

Rather than admit that he was too distracted by the plump pressure of her breast against his chest to answer, he simply closed his eyes and groaned. The act would have been unworthy of him if his head weren’t pounding and his arse aching from hard contact with the floor

“Mrs. Quick,” she was saying, her hand on his cheek. “See if Mr. Clemson is outside. Send him for the doctor.”

He knew his injuries didn’t merit such concern. “No doctor.” He blinked a couple of times until the multiple Fionas resolved into one. “I’ll live. My head is a bit bruised is all.”

In retaliation, she took away both her hand and breast, which almost set Alex to groaning again. She actually smacked him on the arm. “Then don’t frighten me like that….again.”

“Don’t know why you let him in here at all,” came the grumble from the doorway.

Untangling them both from the curtains, Fiona sat up. “Thank you, Mrs. Quick. I think we’re all right now.”

“Ya think that, do ya?”
Fiona gave her the kind of glare that betrayed her aristocratic heritage. The housekeeper, still grumbling, clasped her hands in a parody of good servile behavior and stalked off down the hall.

Fiona looked back down to where Alex lay, and he could see the cost of the last tumble on her face. He should have been outraged. He was lying in a nest of curtains with a fresh headache and the humiliation of his fall, and she was…laughing.

She tried so hard not to. She held her hand to her mouth. She shook her head. He could see her shoulders heave. He would have chastised her, except the minute he opened his mouth, he burst out laughing, too.

“You are not very beneficial to my amour propre,” he wheezed up at her.

She couldn’t stop laughing, full-throated, full-bellied, as if too much suppressed laughter had simply spilled over. “I…I….didn’t…”

“Mean it,” he managed, making it up as far as sitting beside her. “Yes, I know.”

She frantically shook her head. “Think anything could be so…funny!” She was gasping, bent over her hands at her waist. “The look on your face!”

He had meant to get up, to reassert his mastery of the situation. He refused to sacrifice this perfect moment with her on the floor. Wrapping an arm around her shoulder, he wiped at the tears that coursed down her cheeks.

“It’s not that funny,” he groused.

She started laughing again. “Oh, yes it is. You can have no idea of how long it’s been since I had the chance to laugh. Since I last saw your sister, I think.”

He had to grin. “Well, yes. Pip would set anybody to laughing. She’s a ridiculous little thing.”

For that he got a resounding smack on his chest. “Do not dare speak ill of my best friend.” She hiccuped, her eyes widening a bit. “My only friend, actually. Except for Sarah and Lizzie. And now that Sarah is married to my brother, I have no idea at all how we will meet again.”

There was the faintest plaintive note in her voice that made Alex want to curl her completely into his arms and shield her from hurt. Dear God, how lonely she must have been. “I promise,” he said instead. “I fully respect my sister’s loyalty. It’s her good sense I frequently question.”

Her breathing was evening out. She nodded. “Pip does have a knack for acting before thinking.”

“She’s like a whirlwind.”

“She needs to finally capture her Beau,” Fiona said with a definite nod. “That would settle her down.”

Alex snorted. “Poor Beau. He’d never have another moment’s peace.”

And for a long moment, they just sat there in a pool of sunlight and velvet, his arm around her and her head on his shoulder. It felt so good. So whole.

It couldn’t last. If he didn’t move, he’d damn well take her here on the floor. He opened his mouth to tell her, and then made the mistake of meeting her gaze again.

Her lips were still parted, but she wasn’t laughing anymore. He could see the pulse jumping at her throat, and her hands were clenched again, as if she were trying hard to keep them to herself.

He didn’t know why. Lifting his own hand, he cupped her cheek. Again he gave her the chance to pull away. Again she didn’t. His own heart started to skip around. He was rock hard. There was no longer a question. He had to kiss her.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Spotlight and Giveaway: Twice Tempted by Eileen Dreyer appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
48. Guest Post and Giveaway: Megan Frampton, Author of The Dukes Guide to Correct Behavior

Please welcome Megan Frampton to the virtual offices this morning!  Check out what she has to say about her latest release The Duke’s Guide to Correct Behavior, and then enter the awesome giveaway!

Thank you to the Manga Maniac Café for inviting me to guest at their site today. I am a fan of both manga and cafes, although I am not certain about maniacs. I guess it depends on what type of maniac you are. I am maniacal about IPAs, peanut butter, and black sweaters, myself. Not to mention tall, dark-haired British men (see: Most of my heroes).

My new release, The Duke’s Guide to Correct Behavior, pairs an incorrect duke with an improper governess. Both the hero and heroine have a lot to learn about their respective positions in life, and of course they make a muddle of it as they (spoiler!) fall in love with one another.

Marcus, the Duke of Rutherford, is particularly ill-equipped to be a duke, since he never expected to inherit such a lofty title, and has really only wasted time with trivial pursuits prior to this. But just as he’s inherited the title he also gets another responsibility—the care of a child he knew about, but hadn’t had to worry about before.

So Marcus has to hire a governess and take his place in society, which means dressing for the part. But unfortunately, Marcus is usually improperly dressed, which causes his valet some consternation.

Marcus’s valet, Miller, has a few complaints he would like to air here in this safe forum.

  1. The duke cannot seem to keep his cravat on. Each time after he’s met with his daughter’s governess his cravat is nowhere close to his neck.

  2. The duke does not care about whether or not he is appropriately garbed for a ball. He would be just as happy—perhaps moreso—if he could just wear trousers and a shirt.

  3. The duke’s hair seldom needs any kind of styling. I would not admit this to His Grace, but it looks best just after he’s run his hand through it, which he does when he is thinking about something.

  4. The duke is far too tall to fit into most men’s clothing. This requires his wardrobe to be specially ordered, which would be fine if His Grace actually cared about he was wearing. He does not.

  5. Have I mentioned his cravats? Because they are to be found scattered about the house, often with jam on them, and never on His Grace’s throat.

 

The Duke’s Guide to Correct Behavior
Dukes Behaving Badly # 1

By: Megan Frampton

Releasing November 25th, 2014

Avon

Blurb

All of London knows the Duke of Rutherford has position and wealth. They also whisper that he’s dissolute, devilish, and determinedly unwed. So why, everyone is asking, has he hired a governess?

When Miss Lily Russell crosses the threshold of the Duke of Rutherford’s stylish townhouse, she knows she has come face to face with sensual danger. For this is no doting papa. Rather, his behavior is scandalous, and his reputation rightly earned. And his pursuit of her is nearly irresistible—but resist she must for the sake of her pupil.

As for the duke himself, it was bad enough when his unknown child landed on his doorstep. Now Lily, with her unassuming beauty, has aroused his most wicked fantasies—and, shockingly, his desire to change his wanton ways. He’s determined to become worthy of her, and so he asks for her help in correcting his behavior.

But Lily has a secret, one that, if it becomes known, could change everything . . .

Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2014/09/the-dukes-guide-to-correct-behavior.html

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20957414-the-duke-s-guide-to-correct-behavior?ac=1

Buy Links : Amazon | Barnes | iTunes | Kobo

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Dukes-Guide-Correct-Behavior-Behaving-ebook/dp/B00IRCZCRY/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1409072698&sr=1-1&keywords=duke%27s+guide+to+correct+behavior

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-dukes-guide-to-correct-behavior-megan-frampton/1120020579

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/dukes-guide-to-correct-behavior/id833988081

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/the-duke-s-guide-to-correct-behavior

Author Info

Megan Frampton writes historical romance under her own name and romantic women’s fiction as Megan Caldwell. She likes the color black, gin, dark-haired British men, and huge earrings, not in that order. She lives in Brooklyn, NY, with her husband and son.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Website: http://meganframpton.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/meganframptonbooks
Twitter: https://twitter.com/meganf
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/686916.Megan_Frampton?from_search=true

Rafflecopter Giveaway ($25 gift card, e-retailer of choice)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The post Guest Post and Giveaway: Megan Frampton, Author of The Dukes Guide to Correct Behavior appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
49. Review: Twice Tempted by Eileen Dreyer

May Contain Spoilers

Review:

I was in the mood for a historical romance, so I fired up my Kindle and started reading Twice Tempted.  I was hooked from the first page.  I wasn’t sure what I was getting into, but a sweet romance, sprinkled with spicy interludes and a light spy thriller wasn’t it.  I enjoyed as the mystery slowly revealed itself, as well as the secondary characters helping Alex and Fiona solve it.  They actually made the read for me, because Chuffy and Mairead were so unique and their eccentricities were delightfully surprising.

Fiona isn’t having a good day.  The man she has obsessed over for the last four years has just delivered the heartbreaking news that her older brother Ian has been killed.  Worse, her cranky grandfather promptly throws Fiona and her twin sister Mairead out on the streets, because the honorable old man can’t abide the thought of Ian’s scandal rubbing off on his good name.  His granddaughters were only tolerated because Ian was his heir.  He can’t forgive them for the stain of growing up in the slums, and he can’t wait to be rid of them.

Alex, Ian’s friend, is dismayed to find Fiona and Mairead gone when he returns to inform the girls that Ian is still alive and the news of his demise was premature, as was the outrage he was accused of.  Now Alex truly is a man of honor, and he is consumed with guilt for not being there to protect the girls.  Four years ago he delivered Fiona to her grandfather’s estate, and after stealing a kiss from her, he thought that she was in good hands.  Little did he know that Fiona was verbally abused by the marquess, and constantly made to feel unwelcome in her new home.  Alex had only known love and support from his own family, so the thought that Fiona and Mairead would be treated so poorly never occurred to him.  Now he’s determined to find her and give her the life she deserves.

When Alex locates the young women, they are not interested in his plans for their future.  Both Fiona and Mairead are consumed with their intellectual pursuits, and they have no intention of giving up their mathematics and astronomy for a life of luxury.  Fiona has serious trust issues stemming from her childhood in the slums, and she doesn’t believe Alex is capable of delivering on his promises.  She fought to keep her and Mairead safe and fed, and it wasn’t always easy.  I have to say that I don’t understand where Ian was during this time; after their mother died, why didn’t Ian do anything to see the girls in a safer environment?  There was no excuse for him to have left them alone and defenseless for so long, regardless of his circumstances. Ugh.

I had a hard time putting Twice Tempted down, especially as Alex and Fiona became more enmeshed in the plot that threatened to destroy both of them.  They both have trust issues due to their pasts, and secrets they are keeping from each other.  I enjoyed the action, the romance, and how the diverse characters interacted, gaining strength and confidence from their new friendships.  This was a fun read!

Grade:  B

Review copy provided by publisher

From Amazon:

Fiona Ferguson’s troubles began with a kiss . . .

It feels like a lifetime ago that Alex Knight saved Fiona from certain doom . . . and stole a soul-shattering kiss for good measure. Wanting nothing more than to keep her safe, he left her in the care of her grandfather, the Marquess of Dourne.
But Fiona was hardly safe. As soon as he could, the marquess cast her and her sister out on the streets with only her wits to keep them alive.

Alex has never forgotten that long-ago kiss. Now the dashing spy is desperate to make up for failing his duty once before. This time he will protect Fiona once and for all, from a deadly foe bent on taking revenge on the Ferguson line-and anyone who stands in the way . . .

The post Review: Twice Tempted by Eileen Dreyer appeared first on Manga Maniac Cafe.

Add a Comment
50. The Orphan of Torundi, by J. L McCreedy | Dedicated Review

The Orphan of Torundi delivers all the key ingredients for a successful young adult novel. Romance, fast adventure, and a believable landscape blend together for a consuming read with a strong protagonist.

Add a Comment

View Next 25 Posts