May 23, 2017

EARLY REVIEW: When It's Real

When It's Real, by Erin Watt
Publish Date:
May 30, 2017
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Format: ARC, provided by the publisher
Genre: young adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS

(Synopsis) From #1 New York Times bestselling author duo Erin Watt comes the addictive contemporary tale of a teen rock star in need of an image makeover and the teen girl hired to be his fake girlfriend. 

Meet Oakley Ford-teen celebrity, renowned pop star, child of famous movie stars, hottie with millions of fangirls… and restless troublemaker. On the surface he has it all, but with his home life disintegrating, his music well suddenly running dry, and the tabloids having a field day over his outrageous exploits, Oakley's team decides it's time for an intervention. The result: an image overhaul, complete with a fake girlfriend meant to show the world he's settled down.

Enter seventeen-year-old Vaughn Bennett-devoted sister, part-time waitress, the definition of "normal." Under ordinary circumstances she'd never have taken this gig, but with her family strapped for cash, she doesn't have much of a choice. And for the money Oakley's team is paying her, she figures she can put up with outlandish Hollywood parties and a team of publicists watching her every move. So what if she thinks Oakley's a shallow, self-centered jerk? It's not like they're going to fall for each other in real life…right?

I'm very choosy when it comes to my YA contemporary romance selections. Although I've heard of Erin Watt before, I had never read any of her books, but based on the description (I LOVE the regular girl/rock star trope) and recos from trusted friends, I gave When It's Real a try, and it proved to be a winner. 

When It's Real was devoured in hours. Erin Watt was able to hook me in to the story and get me invested and involved in Vaughn and Oakley's lives in mere pages. I wanted to know why Oakley needed to clean up his image at only 19, why he is estranged from his parents and why he seemed to have a love/hate relationship with his job. And I wanted to know what kind of person Vaughn had to be in order to accept big money to be the fake girlfriend to a rock star who she doesn't even like. 

As Vaughn and Oakley mug for the paps and play up their fake relationship all over social media, it was everything that was going on behind the scenes that made this book magic. When they stopped throwing shade at each other and started really learning about one another and getting to know each other, they grew from enemies to friends. That's when my questions about Oakley and Vaughn were answered, and I started asking new ones. Like, will they just KISS already?! 

Vaughn and Oakley were amusing as enemies, adorable as friends, but as a real couple with real feelings, they were amazing. Vaughn realizes that Oakley isn't just some brainless chart topper, but a truly talented musician that is being stifled by the fake adults in his sphere. Oakley learns of Vaughn's tragic past and about what a hard worker she is for her family, but that she has no clue what she wants to do with the rest of her life. And they each care about those things and about trying to make them better for the other person. 

Vaughn gives Oakley a taste of selfless real that he hasn't ever gotten anywhere else. 

She didn't mock me when I confessed I was blocked. She tried to comfort me with silly stories about her family even when it was obvious those same memories caused her pain. She doesn't expect anything from me beyond what we'd agreed upon. She's different and I wanted a taste of that. I wanted to know what it felt like to be her, and the only way I knew how to do that was to put my mouth against hers.

Everything about When It's Real is incredible. From Oakley and Vaughn to the host of side characters, including Vaughn's sister Paisley and Oakley's bodyguard Ty. When It's Real was one of the best YA contemporaries I've ever read.

May 19, 2017

COVER REVEAL: The Beauty of Us (Fusion #4)

The next Fusion book is looking super awesome. Ready to see what it looks like?

The Beauty of Us (Fusion #4), by Kristen Proby
Publish Date:
August 22, 2017
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Genre: adult contemporary sports romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

(Synopsis) Riley Gibson is over the moon at the prospect of having her restaurant, Seduction, on the Best Bites TV network. This could be the big break she’s been waiting for. But the idea of having an in-house show on a regular basis is a whole other matter. Their lives would be turned upside down, and convincing Mia, her best friend and head chef of Seduction, that having cameras in her kitchen every day is a good idea is daunting. Still, Riley knows it’s an opportunity she can’t afford to pass on. And when she meets Trevor Cooper, the show’s executive producer, she’s stunned by their intense chemistry.

Trevor’s sole intention is to persuade Riley to allow Best Bites TV to do a show on her restaurant. But when he walks into Riley’s office, he stops dead in his tracks. The professional, aloof woman on the phone is incredibly beautiful and funny. But can he convince her that he’s interested in Riley for himself? Or is he using the undeniable pull between them to persuade her to agree to his offer?
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Kristen Proby is the author of the bestselling With Me In Seattle and Love Under the Big Sky series. She has a passion for a good love story and strong, humorous characters with a strong sense of loyalty and family. Her men are the alpha type; fiercely protective and a bit bossy, and her ladies are fun, strong, and not afraid to stand up for themselves.

Kristen lives in Montana, where she enjoys coffee, chocolate and sunshine. And naps.

Learn more about Kristen --> Website | Facebook | Twitter | Newsletter SignUp | Goodreads



VEGAS NIGHTS: the brand new series from New York Times bestselling author, Emma Hart!

Sex. Lust. Lies.

Set beneath the dazzling lights of Las Vegas comes a brand new, red-hot series of standalone novels from the snarky, sexy mind of Emma Hart.

Coming July 18th, SIN, book one, is a super-sexy, rivals-to-lovers romance filled with a dose of heartbreak, sexual tension, and a love story you won't be able to resist.

Get ready for your new obsession. 



By day, New York Times and USA Today bestselling New Adult author Emma Hart dons a cape and calls herself Super Mum to two beautiful little monsters. By night, she drops the cape, pours a glass of whatever she fancies—usually wine—and writes books.

Emma is working on Top Secret projects she will share with her followers and fans at every available opportunity. Naturally, all Top Secret projects involve a dashingly hot guy who likes to forget to wear a shirt, a sprinkling (or several) of hold-onto-your-panties hot scenes, and a whole lotta love.

She likes to be busy—unless busy involves doing the dishes, but that seems to be when all the ideas come to life.


May 18, 2017


Ball Peen Hammer, by Lauren Rowe
Publish Date:
July 25, 2016
Publisher: SoCoRo Publishing
Format: audiobook, purchased
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS

(Synopsis) Keane Morgan wouldn’t return any of my calls or texts, and I was pissed as hell about it. I didn’t want to drive from Seattle to L.A. with the guy any more than he wanted to drive with me, but I had no frickin’ choice in the matter--at least, not if I wanted to use his brother Dax’s coveted parking spot at UCLA. 

Okay, so it turned out Keane was objectively gorgeous, and, fine, pretty funny, too. But did he have to be so damned in love with himself? I mean, jeez, the cocky way he flashed those dimples was just so orchestrated. And, honestly, what kind of guy uses the phrase “baby doll” with a straight face? Oh, that’s right: the kind of guy who’s a male stripper.

Yup, the cocky jerk turned out to be Seattle’s answer to Magic Mike, a stripper known as “Ball Peen Hammer”--which meant Keane Morgan was emphatically not the kind of guy I’d ever fall for.

Not. At. All.

No freakin’ way.

Well, until Keane convinced me to fall for him, that is.

Which I did.


I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I purchased Ball Peen Hammer from Audible. No freaking clue that I would laugh more listening to this book than I ever have before. Or that I would fall in love so much with this world and ALL of its characters. Certainly I didn't know that this would be one of the most enjoyable audio books I've ever listened to. Go me. 

In its simplest form, Ball Peen Hammer is about an introverted UCLA film student who, through a friend of her sister, lines up a ride buddy she's never met before to take the trip to LA from Seattle. That buddy would be a very popular male stripper with ebullient charm and blue hair named Keane Morgan. On paper, they are complete opposites and make no sense. But, as it turns out, they are pretty much perfect for each other. 

The banter between Keane and Maddie was brilliantly hilarious. Somehow Lauren Rowe managed to work real conversation and the exchanging of personal information in among euphemisms, silly nicknames and talk of top-notch sex techniques. All along their trip and even later after they reach their destination, Maddie and Keane forged a wonderful friendship that spawned into something more for both of them. 

Keane and Maddie are not the only endearing relationship highlighted in this book. Keane has an epic bromance with his BFF Zander. Those two guys were utterly adorbcicles. And Keane and his siblings and parents sound like an incredible family. They're close enough to tell each other when they're being idiots and then that they love each other in the next breath. 

Sometimes "funny" books like these have a hard time finding the right balance between humor and seriousness. If the book is funny all the time, it's hard to take either character seriously when they're trying to do something or say something meaningful. Ball Peen Hammer, while funny way more often than not, did have moments when I was brought to tears for how upset it made me. There were moments when Maddie and Keane discussed sensitive subjects, and those moments were treated with the attention they deserved. 

The audio version of Ball Peen Hammer was narrated by two fantastic actors. John Lane read the part of Keane, and he was perfect. He captured the happy-go-lucky, cocky, sweet stripper man that I loved so much. Maddie was narrated by Lauren Rowe. Yep - the author. How cool is that? And she was so great! I don't know if the acting or the writing came first, but for sure, she's ace at both. 

May 17, 2017

COVER REVEAL: Bad For You (Dirty Deeds #3)

At long last, Stitch's story is coming! And today I get to show you the cover. Check out BAD FOR YOU...

Coming January 23, 2018.

Preorder Now:
Paperback ➜
iBooks ➜

J.Daniels is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Sweet Addiction series, the Alabama Summer series, and the Dirty Deeds series.

She would rather bake than cook, she listens to music entirely too loud, and loves writing stories her children will never read. Her husband and children are her greatest loves, with cupcakes coming in at a close second.

J grew up in Baltimore and resides in Maryland with her family.

Sign up to receive her newsletter and get special offers and exclusive release info:

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COVER REVEAL: Most Valuable Playboy

If you've read Lauren Blakely's Out of Bounds, then you know she can do sports romances gooooooood. Told from the guy’s POV, MOST VALUABLE PLAYBOY will hit retailers on September 1 - just in time to celebrate the start of fall and football season. The audiobook is slated for a simultaneous release and will be narrated by the awesome Zachary Webber! Check out the amazing cover and blurb below.

Most Valuable Playboy, by Lauren Blakely
Publish Date:
September 1, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Genre: adult contemporary sports romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks (releasing two days early on August 30!)

(Synopsis) Hands down, my favorite thing in the world is to score. Touchdowns.

Don’t let the fact that I’m the leading pick in the Most Valuable Playboy charity auction fool you. These days, I’m only a player on the field. I’ve kept my pants zipped all season long — and it has been long — because nothing’s more important than leading my team to victory every week. Except maybe escaping from the owner’s handsy-as-hell sister who seems dead set on winning more than a date with me at the auction.

Enter Violet and a well-placed Hail Mary.

She’s my best friend’s sister with a smile as sweet as cherry pie and a mind that runs quicker than the 40-yard-dash. After Violet saves the day with the highest bid, I don’t even give her a two-minute warning before I kiss her in front of the whole crowd and then announce that she’s my girlfriend. Which would be fine except my agent tells me the next day that we’ve got to keep up the act while he’s negotiating my contract.

Violet says she’ll take one for the team and pretend to be mine, but our boyfriend-girlfriend scrimmage quickly turns into a full contact sport. And soon enough, I want this game with her to go into overtime. The problem is — I’ve been riding the bench for years.

How can a guy like me, who finally has a chance to prove his worth on the field, convince the girl she’s most valuable to his heart?

A #1 New York Times Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that's hot, sweet and sexy. She lives in California with her family and has plotted entire novels while walking her dogs. With fourteen New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than 80 times, and she's sold more than 2 million books. In June she'll release THE KNOCKED UP PLAN, a standalone romantic comedy. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter!

Learn more about Lauren --> Website ** Facebook ** Twitter ** Newsletter ** Goodreads


K.A. Linde is off to an incredible start with this series about this awesomely crazy group of siblings with baggage and passion. Check out my review for The Wright Boss.

The Wright Boss, by K.A. Linde
Publish Date:
May 16, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and Inkslinger PR
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS

(Synopsis) I’ve always had one rule:

Don’t mix business and pleasure.

But then Landon Wright comes home to his family’s construction company with a broken back and a beaten heart and ends up as my new sexy boss. As the office gets heated, I’m thinking about throwing the rulebook out the window.

If only there weren’t a million reasons this could never work.

We may have shared a single perfect kiss, but I can’t let our intense connection cloud my judgment. Not with everything I’ve worked for on the line.

Dating your boss is so very, very wrong…even if he feels so Wright.

Landon Wright has a complicated past. His ex-girlfriend is now dating his brother and he's got the hots for her BFF. After a back injury forces him to push pause (and possibly stop) on his PGA career, he's forced to take a job he doesn't really want at his family's construction company, all the while managing his divorce from one of the most vile women ever. 

It's impossible to not feel for Heidi. She has strong feelings for Landon, but there are two massive barriers to getting him. First, is the sisters before misters code. Her best friend dated him for two years, and Heidi doesn't feel like she could go there with Landon. And second, Landon is married. No matter how unhappy he is and how much he wants out of his marriage, until he is at least legally separated from his wife, Heidi refuses to give in. 

I can't imagine the hopeless situation in which Heidi finds herself. She is mostly in love with this guy, and he's doubly unavailable. On top of that, he's now her boss, which adds a whole new layer of forbiddenness. 

I'm sure Heidi didn't anticipate Landon's determination to make her his. And thank goodness for that. Because reading about his wooing and her resisting was completely delightful. I loved how all-in Landon was when he decided that Heidi was it for him. He was absolutely irresistible. And Heidi's resistance just made for good reading. 

I wanted to make things right. To see where this relationship could go. I wanted her to be mine.

There's a few Wright siblings left that are still in need of a good man or woman. I am having so much fun reading about them all - I can't wait to see what's coming next. 

K.A. Linde is the USA Today bestselling author of more than fifteen novels including the Avoiding series and the Record series. She has a Masters degree in political science from the University of Georgia, was the head campaign worker for the 2012 presidential campaign at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and served as the head coach of the Duke University dance team. She loves reading fantasy novels, geeking out over Star Wars, binge-watching Supernatural, and dancing in her spare time.

She currently lives in Lubbock, Texas, with her husband and two super adorable puppies.


May 16, 2017

REVIEW: Behind the Curtain

Behind the Curtain, by Beth Kery
Publish Date:
May 2, 2017
Publisher: Berkley Romance
Format: e-ARC, provided by the publisher
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4 STARS

(Synopsis) There’s something about this woman…

On a break between overseas jobs, journalist Asher Gaites returns to his hometown of Chicago—and allows his friends to persuade him to check out a hot new singer. At a downtown jazz club, he’s soon transfixed by the lyrical voice and sensuous body of a woman who performs behind a thin, shimmering veil...

That could bring a man to his knees.

The veil gives Moroccan American Laila Barek the anonymity she needs since she has never been able to reconcile her family’s values with her passion for music. But one man is inexplicably drawn to her. And when Asher confronts her on a subway platform after a gig, he’s shocked to recognize the woman who walked away from him nine years ago...

Laila has never been able to forget the touch, the feel, the taste of Asher. And despite the doubt and fear that wind their way into their lives, they must trust the heat of their desire to burn down the walls the world has placed between them…

Behind The Curtain is a book that takes the trope of the forbidden romance to a whole new level. Because the relationship highlighted within its pages truly was forbidden on a very personal and profound level. And it asks the reader to think about exactly how far he or she would go in order to be with the person he or she loves. Would you forsake your family? Your culture? The fabric of your makeup? 

Laila and Asher meet one fateful summer in a beach town in Michigan. They were both on vacation and in very different places in their lives. Nineteen-year-old Laila was just starting out in life, and although a college degree in business isn't what she would've picked for her life, she understands the value in it and is excited to finally get to college and be on her own for a change. Asher is done with college and ready to start his first job, but it's not the job his father wants for him. Asher has bucked tradition and, rather than take over the family business, he's becoming a reporter. 

Asher's rich, society-conscious family would never approve of him dating a Moroccan-American Muslim girl. And Laila's very traditional family would never approve of her dating a white rich boy. Laila is set to start college in Chicago in a month. Asher is set to start a new dream job in Lost Angeles in a month. The timing and the situation could not have been worse for these two, but still, they fell deeply in love. And, when things came to a head and they had to part ways, it was devastating for both of them. 

Now, eight years later, Asher can't believe his ears when he hears Laila's beautiful singing voice coming from a veiled singing sensation named Yesenia. He has a second chance with Laila, but really nothing has changed. Her family still wouldn't approve. He is a week away from taking a new job in London. But, they have hindsight and maturity on their sides this time. Maybe that will make a difference this time. 

A little more than half of Behind the Curtain is told in the past. It's all told in one chunk, rather than switching back and forth between the past and the present as many books do in the case of a second chance love story. I prefer to get the whole story all at once like this. It's much less distracting this way. 

The thing with Behind the Curtain is that there is no completely happy ending. Both Asher and, particularly Laila, need to make some really difficult choices. It's so easy to say that you would do anything for love, but would you give up a family that you love and that loves you in return? Would that be an easy choice for you to make? It's definitely not an easy one for Laila. And that made for some delicious angst. And a not entirely clean ending, either.  

May 12, 2017



From New York Times Bestselling author Kristen Proby, comes a passionate new romance—EASY FORTUNE! A Boudreaux Series novella, this standalone second chance romance features Mallory’s best friend Lena! Don’t miss the beautiful cover and a note from Kristen below! EASY FORTUNE is coming your way May 30, 2017!


Easy Fortune (Boudreaux #5.5), by Kristen Proby
Publish Date:
May 30, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Genre: adult contemporary romance

(Synopsis) Sometimes the past is better left behind you…

Lena Turner has spent her life as the outsider. Thanks to her extraordinary gifts, she’s learned to be independent—especially when it comes to men. She’s content to live her life in New Orleans as a schoolteacher, dating casually and dedicated to her small family. Long term is not part of her plan.

Sometimes the past catches up with you…

Leaving Lena behind to pursue his career was the most difficult thing Mason Coulter ever did. He told himself that it was for the best, had even convinced himself that he had only Lena’s best interests in mind. But now, after six long years, he’s back in New Orleans to settle his late eccentric aunt’s estate. All he has to do is get in and out of the city without submitting to the need to see Lena. But to Mason’s dismay, his aunt made other plans.

And sometimes the future and the past collide…

Having Mason walk back into her life is something Lena never saw coming. She could refuse to help him, but she’s never been good at telling Mason no. So she’ll do what she can to get the estate settled and Mason out of her life for good.

At least, that’s the plan. But Mason has plans of his own…

A Note from Kristen: 

Hi, everyone! I’m so happy that it’s finally Friday because that means that I don’t have to keep this secret anymore! I’m horrible at keeping secrets. Seriously, don’t tell me any. I can’t be trusted. 

Since Easy Magic released last month, readers have shouted from the rooftops that they’d love for Lena, Mallory’s BFF, to have her own story. I honestly didn’t have that in mind when I wrote her into Easy Magic, but the more I thought about it, the more it occurred to me that you’re right. Lena does deserve her own happily ever after! 

And that brings us to this. Easy Fortune, Lena’s story, will release on May 30th! That’s right, you won’t have to wait long for this one. Easy Fortune is a novella, and can be read as a stand-alone. And look at this gorgeous cover! I can’t thank Sara Eirew Photography enough for the beautiful photo, and Okay Creations for the amazing cover art. 

Lena’s story has been a surprise to me, and frankly one of the most enjoyable story lines that I’ve written in a long time. I hope you enjoy watching her fall in love with Mason! He’s quite swoon-worthy! 

Oh, and to make it an even better treat, the prologue and first chapter for Easy Nights will be included at the end of Easy Fortune. JACKPOT! 

Have a great weekend, everyone! 



And don’t miss the first standalone titles in the Boudreaux Series:
About Kristen Proby: New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Kristen Proby is the author of the bestselling With Me In Seattle and Love Under the Big Sky series. She has a passion for a good love story and strong, humorous characters with a strong sense of loyalty and family. Her men are the alpha type; fiercely protective and a bit bossy, and her ladies are fun, strong, and not afraid to stand up for themselves. Kristen lives in Montana, where she enjoys coffee, chocolate and sunshine. And naps.

Website**Facebook**Twitter**Newsletter Sign Up**Author Goodreads

May 11, 2017

REVIEW: Restrained Under His Duty (Dirty Little Secrets #3)

Restrained Under His Duty (Dirty Little Secrets #3), by Stacey Kennedy
Publish Date:
April 4, 2017
Publisher: Loveswept
Format: e-ARC, provided by the publisher via Netgalley
Genre: adult suspense romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4 STARS

(Synopsis) As the chief of security for a prominent senator, Ryder Blackwood is stunned when an anonymous source sends him a compromising photo of his boss’s twenty-five-year-old daughter getting down and dirty in an underground sex club. If it gets out, the media firestorm could ruin her father. More troubling for Ryder is how arousing he finds the whole situation. He’s known Hadley Winters since she was a kid. And now she’s the woman in all his most private fantasies.

Wild behavior helps Hadley get through those painful, lonely nights, but she’s been waiting a long time for a man like Ryder to protect her from herself. Ryder is raw. He’s real. And he makes her feel safe. Now that they’ve both become pawns in a blackmailer’s dangerous game, there’s more at stake than her father’s political career. As the intimate threats tear apart a tender new love, Hadley is forced to trust Ryder with her life—and her heart.

Restrained Under His Duty is a great unrequited love story with a hefty dose of intrigue, suspense and danger thrown into the mix. And, of course, when you add those particular items, that unrequited love (which, actually, is completely requited, as it turns out) has no choice but to build into something pretty awesome. 

Ryder has a lot of reasons for not getting into it with Hadley, despite his desire to do just that. He's known her since she was just a kid. He's friends with, and employed by, her father. He's into some kinky stuff, as is evidenced by his ownership of a BDSM club. But, it's getting harder and harder to resist her when she keeps suggesting the opposite of a friends-only relationship.

Hadley has wanted Ryder ever since she knew what it meant to want someone. She trusts him. She's attracted to him. She thinks he can give her what she needs. She's been biding her time in one sex club or another, waiting for Ryder to wake up and claim her, but she's just about done waiting. I would be too, if I were her.

Unfortunately, she and Ryder are forced into close quarters when she's threatened in a horrible way and Ryder's caveman protector instinct kick in. It was a really beautiful thing when that happened. It was like, all those years of frustration and angst exploded into this crazy passion. But, that doesn't fix all their problems. Ryder still has his hang-ups, Hadley still feels largely unwanted, and there's still a guy out there blackmailing, kidnapping and attempting to murder, and no one knows who it is.

I really like this series about a bunch of sex club owners and BFFs who have these secret meetings and help each other out. I like how Stacey Kennedy has woven this over arching plot into all their stories, too. There's one final book left in the series, and I can't wait to see how it all comes together in the end. 

May 10, 2017

REVIEW: Pipe Dreams (Brooklyn Bruisers #3)

Pipe Dreams (Brooklyn Bruisers #3), by Sarina Bowen
Publish Date:
May 2, 2017
Publisher: Berkley Romance
Format: e-ARC, provided by the publisher via Netgalley
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS

(Synopsis) Mike Beacon is a champion at defending the net, but off the ice, he’s not so lucky. A widower and a single father, he’s never forgotten Lauren Williams, the ex who gave him the best year of his life. When Lauren reappears in the Bruisers office during the playoffs, Beacon sees his chance to make things right.

Lauren hates that she’s forced to travel with the team she used to work for and the man who broke her heart. There’s still undeniable sexual tension running between her and Mike, but she won’t go down that road again. She’s focused on her plans for the future—she doesn’t need a man to make her dreams of motherhood come true.

Lauren plays her best defensive game, but she’s no match for the dark-eyed goalie. When the field of play moves to Florida, things heat up on the beach.

One of Mike’s biggest fans doesn’t approve—his teenage daughter. But a true competitor knows not to waste the perfect shot at love.

Sarina Bowen's series about hot hockey players gets better with every book. And Mike Beacon may just be the best book boyfriend this year. This man is honorable and determined and a really good dad. Without a doubt, he's the sexiest Bruiser yet. 

I didn't know how I'd feel about Lauren's book. She's always been kind of awful to everyone around her. We discover in Pipe Dreams that there's a very good reason behind this, and I loved watching Lauren's cold attitude slowly change as her orbit starts to expand to include hockey and Mike once again - two things she used to love, but had to give up. 

Lauren's relationship with Nate is especially sweet. He's her boss, but he seems like a really close friend as well. And Nate is definitely a friend you want to have. Not only is he loaded, but he gives good advice and friendly nudges in the right direction when they're needed. 

Mike is a veteran on the team. One of the oldest guys, he has a thirteen-year-old daughter, a dead wife, and feelings for Lauren that haven't died out for years. His story is definitely a sad one - his choices were not easy. He and Lauren had 18 perfect months before he had to leave her, and although I think the way he went about it was all wrong, his reasons behind them were true. 

Mike's determination to get Lauren back in his life isn't dampened by anything - not her constant refusals or his daughter's vehement objections. A man who knows what he wants is super sexy, and Mike may be the sexiest of them all. He wants that love back, and he's not going to stop until he has it. This man is unbelievable. 

There's actually some movement on the Nate and Becca situation in Pipe Dreams, so I don't know if they will get their own book or not. Especially since neither is a player. But, I loved their little side story that was running parallel to Lauren and Mike's. 

There's tons of hockey action in Pipe Dreams as the Bruisers enter the playoffs and start the hunt for the Stanley Cup. Sports books with very little sports action are always a bit disappointing. So, I was glad that this one was full of all the sports action that makes sports books one of my favorite sub-genres. 

Pipe Dreams not only didn't disappoint, but it blew me away with it's passion, it's excitement and it's honesty. I certainly hope that this isn't the last we've heard from the Brooklyn Bruisers.

May 9, 2017

REVIEW: Blade Bound (Chicagoland Vampires #13)

Blade Bound (Chicagoland Vampires #13), by Chloe Neill
Publish Date:
April 25, 2017
Publisher: Berkley Books
Format: e-ARC, provided by the publisher via Netgalley
Genre: adult paranormal romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS

(Synopsis) Since the night of her brutal attack and unwilling transformation to vampire, Merit’s stood as Sentinel and protector of Chicago’s Cadogan House. She's saved the Windy City from the forces of darkness time and again with her liege and lover, Ethan Sullivan, by her side.

When the House is infiltrated and Merit is attacked by a vampire seemingly under the sway of dark magic, Merit and Ethan realize the danger is closer than they could have ever imagined. As a malign sorcery spreads throughout the city, Merit must go to war against supernatural powers beyond her comprehension. It’s her last chance to save everything—and everyone—she loves.

I read Some Girls Bite (Chicagoland Vampires #1) a bunch of years ago when I was looking for something to fill the Sookie Stackhouse-sized hole left in my vampire book loving heart. I fell in love with the strong, plucky, bacon-loving Merit and her sire, the enigmatic Ethan Sullivan. Over the years they have been through more than any one couple should ever have to go through. No really. It's been RIDIC. But here we are, at the final Chicagoland Vampires book, and it seems that their future might be happy, full, and pretty damn perfect after all. 

This last book is absolutely everything you could want or need in a series ender. With thirteen books under her belt, Chloe Neill has brought back nearly all of the side characters that made the Chicagoland world so full and rich, for at least a little glimpse. There are at least a few mentions of the other Chicago vampire masters, Scott and Morgan as well as Merit's Red Guard partner Jonah. We get to see Gabriel, the Apex of the North American Central Pack call Merit "Kitten" one last time. The Ombuddies - Jeff, Catcher, Mallory and Merit's grandfather - are on hand to solve one last Chicago plight. And the Cadogan vampires who we've come to expect to have Merit and Ethan's back - Malik, Luc and Lindsey - are kicking ass and taking names. 

Every one of the loose threads are tied up. Even threads I didn't realize were loose were tightened to an incredibly satisfying degree. Weeks after I finished reading Blade Bound, I thought back on the events that unfolded during the course of the book, and I realized how masterfully Chloe Neill wove those finalities into the story. I didn't even realize they were happening until later when I was thinking about all the characters I had grown to love and how they had all found this amazing life alongside Merit and Ethan. 

And, of course, Merit and Ethan are going to have an amazing life. We get to see them fight side-by-side, and puzzle out a new problem, and argue and make up and GET MARRIED. And yes - the big question that we've all had for years now about the prophecy that Gabriel made is answered. And I promise, it's a satisfying resolution to a story line that's kept us hanging for a long time now. 

I realize I'm being rather vague with my review, but the events that unfold in Blade Bound are a continuation from the events in Midnight Marked (Chicagoland Vampires #12). So, I can't go into specifics without giving away some pretty big spoilers. Suffice it to say that Blade Bound has tons of action, danger and humor. And the romance pegs the swoon meter. Merit and Ethan have found this incredible love and respect for one another that can only be borne from all that they have encountered and survived together, and that shows in their words and their actions. 

Thankfully, Chloe Neill seems as reluctant to leave the Chicagoland Vampire world as we are, and she announced at the end of Blade Bound that there will be a spin-off featuring certain characters from the series. If you want to know who they are, well... you'll have to read the book. :)

May 5, 2017


Kylie Scott has a new book coming out, and this cover you guys...

Trust, by Kylie Scott
Publish Date:
July 18, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: iBooks

(Synopsis) Being young is all about the experiences: the first time you skip school, the first time you fall in love…the first time someone holds a gun to your head.

After being held hostage during a robbery at the local convenience store, seventeen year old Edie finds her attitude about life shattered. Unwilling to put up with the snobbery and bullying at her private school, she enrolls at the local public high school, crossing paths with John. The boy who risked his life to save hers. While Edie’s beginning to run wild, however, John’s just starting to settle down. After years of partying and dealing drugs with his older brother, he’s going straight—getting to class on time, and thinking about the future.

An unlikely bond grows between the two as John keeps Edie out of trouble and helps her broaden her horizons. But when he helps her out with another first—losing her virginity—their friendship gets complicated.

Meanwhile, Edie and John are pulled back into the dangerous world they narrowly escaped. They were lucky to survive the first time, but this time they have more to lose—each other.

Kylie is a New York Times and USA Today best-selling author. She was voted Australian Romance Writer of the year, 2013 & 2014, by the Australian Romance Writer’s Association and her books have been translated into eleven different languages. She is a long time fan of romance, rock music, and B-grade horror films. Based in Queensland, Australia with her two children and husband, she reads, writes and never dithers around on the internet. You can learn more about Kylie from







May 4, 2017

REVIEW: Too Hard to Forget (Romancing the Clarksons #3)

Too Hard to Forget (Romancing the Clarksons #3), by Tessa Bailey
Publish Date:
April 25, 2017
Publisher: Forever Romance
Format: e-ARC, provided by the publisher via Netgalley
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS

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

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

Once again, Tessa Bailey hit the mark with her third Romancing the Clarksons book, as yet another Clarkson sibling is left behind thanks to unexpectedly finding love on their cross-country journey. 

Too Hard To Forget had a lot going for it. If you're a fan of the second chance romance, May-December romance and/or forbidden romance tropes, you'll love this book, because they're all there. 

I'm so glad I had a chance to get to know Peggy Clarkson better. In previous Romancing the Clarkson book, it was hard to get a bead on her. We knew she was always upbeat and sweet, but yet she wears four - FOUR - engagement rings around her neck as a reminder of the four weddings she backed out of over the years. I honestly felt bad for the guys she was engaged to - can you even imagine? 

But, Peggy's actions all became clear in Too Hard to Forget, as we learned about her relationship with Elliott Brooks when she was a senior in college. Told partly in flashbacks, it's clear that Peggy and Elliott were in love at the time despite the fact that she was a student and the head cheerleader, and Elliott was on staff at the college as the head football coach. However, Elliott fell for Peggy very much against his better judgement, and when the guilt and pressure and how BIG his feelings for her had gotten proved to be too much, he broke things off with her in a pretty harsh way, and Peggy was forced to move on. 

Those four engagement rings hanging around Peggy's neck is a physical manifestation of her inability to move on from him despite her best efforts. And when her road trip to New York takes she and Belmont near her alma mater in Ohio, she seizes the opportunity to finally get Coach Brooks out of her system. Nice try, Peggy.

No, getting over him would mean shutting off her center of gravity. Pretending she'd never felt the organ race out of control in her chest, just hearing another person's name. Who would want to forget that kind of insanity?

Elliott hasn't been doing much better than Peggy. He's buried himself in his job and shut everyone else out, including his own 12-year-old daughter. Peggy re-entering his orbit completely throws him for a loop and once again he finds himself fighting their attraction as hard as he can. His efforts were pretty harsh, and he pushes her away so violently (emotionally, never physically) that the vibrant and bubbly Peggy that we've seen so far disappears. 

I was prepared for the hot sex. That's something that Tessa Bailey ALWAYS does perfectly. I was also prepared for the humor that was injected at times. And it was needed, because what I wasn't prepared for was the depth and breadth of emotions that this story evoked. Between Elliott's tortured soul to his daughter's misunderstood feelings to Peggy's search for closure to the unexpected quick glimpse into Sage's past, Too Hard to Forget packed an angsty, emotional punch. 

Speaking of Sage, the final Clarkson left standing is the one whose story we've all been waiting for, and it's going to be the last one, due out in a few months. I'm so excited to see Sage and Bel FINALLY get together, because I just know it's going to be absolutely explosive. And having all four of these couples together in one space finally is going to be epic.

Peggy the bombshell. Peggy the liar. Peggy the mediator. Peggy the grief-stricken. The angel. The devil. The baby. The old soul. 

You never know what you're going to get. 

May 3, 2017

BLOG TOUR REVIEW: Sex in the Sticks

SEX IN THE STICKS is here - check out my review!

Sex in the Sticks, by Sawyer Bennett
Publish Date:
May 2, 2017
Publisher: Loveswept
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and Inkslinger PR
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4 STARS

(Synopsis) Valentine French may be the sassiest dating columnist in New York City, but the abundance of metrosexuals in her adopted metropolis is seriously cramping her style. Where are the beefy all-American boys? Hoping to find some inspiration, Val heads to Alaska, where the men outnumber the women fifteen to one and wrestle grizzly bears for sport. Or so she can only imagine. Suddenly the most eligible bachelorette in a town full of horny lumberjacks, Val is writing her best columns ever. But if she doesn’t get her nose out of her laptop, she just might miss out on Mr. Right.

Logan Burke is the sheriff of the little podunk town that Val finds so charmingly backward. He’s not that different from the guys she’s using for her little experiment; it’s just that one date would never be enough for Logan. As he listens to Val complain about love over beers in the local tavern, he realizes that she can’t see the forest for the trees. Because if she would ever give up her Prada bags and fourteen-dollar martinis, Logan would give her the only luxury that matters: his heart.

The Proposal meets The Bachelorette in Sawyer Bennett's new standalone rom com, Sex in the Sticks. 

Valentine French is a high maintenance rich city girl who would like to know what it's like to date a REAL man for a change. So would all her blog readers. After hearing the man to woman ratio in Alaska is, like, 15 to 1, she decides to try her luck there, and is not only not disappointed, but soon finds herself in way over her head when she makes it to a small town and meets its only police officer. 

You would think that Valley French would be a hard character to like. She's completely ignorant about how the real world works. She's used to car services and full service salons and personal shoppers. Sharing a bathroom with a bunch of mountain men in her "bed and breakfast" (read: boarding house) and eating caribou stew at the bar down the street is way out of her comfort zone. 

But, Valley actually was extremely likable because she was willing to adapt and she never, ever was hurtful or insulting toward the locals. She knew enough to know that she was unprepared for her experience in Alaska and was willing to do what she needed to in order to fit in and function in her surroundings. 

It helped that she had a major crush on the town hot cop, Logan Burke. I'm surprised that Logan went for someone like Valley, but perhaps it was a combination of her difference from everyone else that he already knew and her easy going and likable personality. As much as he didn't like it, she was honest with him about her intentions to come to Alaska and do some dating around. And I liked that he sort of took that as a challenge to try and take her off the market. 

I liked that things were not easy for Valley. Aside from the usual challenges with adapting to an environment that is so vastly different from what she's used to, Valley also has to deal with some small town problems like everyone knowing your business and not everyone being happy about it. All this gave Valley a chance to flex her people skills, and heaven knows, it gave her plenty of fodder for her blog. 

Logan's and Valley's romance was a slow burn that soon combusted into smoking hot times and lots of sweetness too. They were a perfect odd couple, which made them endearing and easy to root for. They were playful with one another, and I loved their banter and the situations that Logan had to rescue Valley from. Sawyer Bennett has proven that she can do hot and serious and dangerous and angsty. Sex in the Sticks proves that she also has romantic comedy in the bag. 

Since the release of her debut contemporary romance novel, Off Sides, in January 2013, Sawyer Bennett has released more than 30 books and has been featured on both the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists on multiple occasions.

A reformed trial lawyer from North Carolina, Sawyer uses real life experience to create relatable, sexy stories that appeal to a wide array of readers. From new adult to erotic contemporary romance, Sawyer writes something for just about everyone.

Sawyer likes her Bloody Marys strong, her martinis dirty, and her heroes a combination of the two. When not bringing fictional romance to life, Sawyer is a chauffeur, stylist, chef, maid, and personal assistant to a very active toddler, as well as full-time servant to two adorably naughty dogs. She believes in the good of others, and that a bad day can be cured with a great work-out, cake, or a combination of the two.


May 2, 2017


The Handy Men, by Jamie K. Schmidt
Publish Date:
May 1, 2017
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and Inkslinger PR
Genre: adult erotic romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4 STARS

(Synopsis) Jack and Dean love each other, but they’re missing the woman to complete their triangle. When newly divorced Paige Richards buys a Bed and Breakfast on Hamlet Island and employs them to help her fix the inn up, Jack and Dean are sure they’ve found the one they’ve been looking for. Despite the playful, sexy clues they drop, luscious Paige is reticent about getting involved, even when they set the stage so she can stumble on them in action. They can tell by her responses she wants to join them, but rumors travel fast on the small island, and tales of a threesome could get back to the conservative, family vacation crowd who won’t patronize those with an alternative lifestyle. And the last thing they want for Paige is the B&B’s rooms…and her bank account…to remain empty. But Jack and Dean will stop at nothing to prove to Paige that she can have it all…with them.

The best way to describe Jamie K. Schmidt's THE HANDY MEN is that it's just a good, dirty time. It was a very quick read with lots of dirty talk and even a surprise or two. 

Basically, Jack and Dean are a married couple who are rehabbing a B&B for Paige, a girl who comes from a rich, conservative family. They're looking for a third to complete their triad after their last relationship with a girl went south, and they think Paige is perfect. Convincing her of that, followed by her family and the rest of the island they live on, is the real challenge. And then when the girl from their last triad relationship shows back up wanting them back, things get even more complicated. 

If you have just a few hours and want a quick, dirty read, The Handy Men is perfect for you. It's only 141 pages, so it will go by fast. I read it in one afternoon. It's not overly angsty or drama-laden. There's no twisty plot or convoluted back story here - approach it as pure, sexy escapism, and this will more than check all your boxes. 

There's some hot m/m, m/f and m/m/f action in this book, so you're sure to find something you like. The book isn't very long, so we don't have a lot of opportunity to delve too deeply in the characters' lives, but I learned enough to know that I REALLY liked Dean, I liked Jack well enough, and I thought Paige was a great heroine. Paige has a difficult family and an ex who don't treat her so well, but when diplomacy and politeness doesn't work with them, she does what she has to in order to take control of her life again. Bravo, girlfriend. 

Then there's Jack and Dean. Jack bothered me from time to time, as he seemed less serious about a lasting relationship with Paige than Dean did. When a situation arises with their ex who shows up in town unexpectedly, Jack is shady about it. When Paige finds out on her own, Jack doesn't seem too apologetic or regretful about his actions at all. And Dean's explanation as to why was flimsy at best. It was Dean holding the three of them together, and for that, he gets a gold star.

As expected, the sex was super hot. I would've been disappointed if it hadn't been. So, if you're in the mood for a good time, you've got Jamie Schmidt's number.

USA Today Bestselling author, Jamie K. Schmidt is a hybrid author who has over thirty short stories published in small press and ezines, and a variety of novellas and books online. Her Club Inferno series from Random House has been in Amazon's top 100 ebooks sold and Barnes and Noble's top 10. She has a dragon paranormal romance series at Entangled Publishing. Book one of the Emerging Queens series is The Queen's Wings.

Jamie holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the State University of New York at New Paltz in Secondary Education English, which is a fancy way of saying she went to college to teach high school English. When that didn't pan out, she worked as a call center manager, a Tupperware consultant, a paralegal, and finally a technical writer for a major conglomerate company. She is an active member in the Romance Writers of America (RWA). When not writing, Jamie relaxes with a mug of hot tea and knits or makes beaded jewelry. You can reach her at Twitter: @jamiekswriter or at her website

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May 1, 2017


Lauren Blakely can do no wrong. Her latest rom com is out now - check out my review of JOY RIDE, read the excerpt and enter the amazing giveaway!

Joy Ride, by Lauren Blakely
Publish Date:
May 1, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and Inkslinger PR
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS

(Synopsis) Let’s be honest, ladies. A good man is a lot like the perfect car. You want a hot body, an engine that purrs, and superior performance under the hood... for the best joy ride of your life.

I’m at your service. Ready to go all night long.

But then a wildly sexy brunette appears in my life and throws a wrench in all my plans. She’s fiery, she’s talented, she’s gorgeous, and I’d really like to know what makes her engine hum.

Henley also happens to be my biggest rival, and now we’re forced to work together every day on the most important custom car build of my career. The trouble is I can’t quite figure out if she wants to kick me in the lug nuts or beg me to give her a good, hard fuel injection. Until one night that question is answered on the hood of a sports car when she calls out my name three times. And we can’t seem to put on the brakes.

If sleeping with the enemy is a bad idea, how much more dangerous would it be to fall in love with her?

Joy Ride was such a fun book. That should come as no big surprise. Lately, Lauren Blakely has been rocking the rom coms with her funny, sexy books that have confident heroines, interesting heroes and engaging plots. Her books have taken us into the world of many different professions - bar owner, comic strip writer, magician, doctor, animal shelter owner. And now - grease monkey.

Cars and chicks - that's all I need for sustenance.

Max Summers (brother to the aforementioned doctor, who was the hero in FULL PACKAGE) is one of the best custom car builders in the city, so when he is asked to build a custom ride for a TV show, he jumps at the chance. The only catch is, he has a co-builder who happens to be the one that got away. Rather, the one he sent away - when he fired her from his shop five years earlier. Now Henley is back and ready to prove him wrong.

Not only did I love the second chance storyline in Joy Ride, I loved the competition between Max and Henley. She obviously is still so angry at Max for firing her, but also obvious is her attraction to him and her reluctant respect for his talent. Max wanted to do this job solo, partly because he knows it will put his shop on the map, but mostly because his mutual attraction to Henley could be a distraction he doesn't need. So, the tension between them is super thick for quite awhile.

I also loved that Henley is a whiz in a male-dominated profession. She's confident and smart and creative. She also knows the deck is stacked against her and is trying to do all she can to earn her place in the city's custom car profession honestly. She was a very likable heroine, and I wanted her to get her HEA so badly.

Henley's and Max's chemistry takes over as they work on this car. They're so hot together, and they have a lot in common. They were probably one of the most perfect couples ever. Except that she works for his competition, which you just knew would eventually cause problems. How could it not?

I laughed a lot while reading Joy Ride. Henley and Max are playful with one another and the book just has this overall light tone. It's a perfect book for a beach read or a nice day in the park. I can't wait to see what's next up Lauren Blakely's sleeve.

I point to the guy behind the glass. “You want Peter’s number?”

“I don’t know. Do you think he likes pi┼ła coladas and making love in the rain?”

For a flash second, a burst of wildfire curls through my veins. It feels like white-hot jealousy. Which is ridiculous since she’s not making love to Peter.

Or me, for that matter, obviously.

I fight off the envy with a full dose of sarcasm. “Have you ever noticed you never have a good pair of headphones when you need them?”

She huffs. “Message received. I’ll just shut up and read a book.” She reaches for her phone on the seat, but accidentally knocks it to the floor of the car. I lean down to pick it up, and when I hand it to her I see her playlist.

Nena’s “99 Luftballoons.”

The Go-Go’s “Vacation.”

Madonna’s “Like a Virgin.”

I smirk. That’s too fucking adorable. “You like bubblegum pop?”

Her cheeks go red. “There’s nothing wrong with bubblegum pop,” she says as she tries to grab her phone from my hand.

I. Can’t. Resist.

I don’t know what comes over me, but I’m pretty damn sure it’s the way this girl needles me. It’s her French maid routine. It’s her pushing all my buttons. It’s the way she detests me.

I hold her phone behind my head.

“Max,” she says, in a perfect plea. God, it’s hot. I can hear her saying it in bed.

I feign surprise. “Oh, did you want your phone back, tiger?”

Her eyes widen when I use that word. Frankly, I’m surprised I said it. But she is a tiger, especially right now as she leans across the seat, reaching for it.

Damn, I’m an asshole. And yet, I can’t seem to stop playing keep-away with her phone, jamming it far behind me so that it hits the side of the car. She lunges for it, thrusting her arm out, but only hitting my forearm.

She swats me. “Give it to me.”

My brain short-circuits. She would sound hot saying that bent over the bed.

Then in a flurry, she unbuckles her seat belt and lunges at me.

Foul play indeed.

She’s on me. She’s fucking on me. She climbs, stretching high, her tits near my motherfucking face, so help me God. They are saggy, drooping, ugly breasts.

Except they’re not.

They’re perfect. Lush, ripe.

Like her sweet perfume scent. Like her cinnamon breath that flutters across my cheek as she rises higher. As she reaches, her T-shirt rides up, revealing a sliver of her stomach.

I’ve never seen anything so sexy in my life.

I don’t move. I don’t breathe.

I simply try not to grow more aroused. But then she wraps one hand around my wrist and pries the phone with the other as her breasts smash against my eyes.

Man down. 

A #1 New York Times Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that's hot, sweet and sexy. She lives in California with her family and has plotted entire novels while walking her dogs. With fourteen New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than seventy-five times, and she's sold more than 1.5 million books. In May she'll release JOY RIDE, a standalone romantic comedy. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter!

Learn more about Lauren --> Website ** Facebook ** Twitter ** Newsletter ** Goodreads

Celebrate the release of JOY RIDE with this amazing giveaway!

The JOY RIDE giveaway is filled with:
✮ Kate Spade Patton Leather Tote and Kate Spade Desktop Planner ($325 value)
✮ $50 Gift Card to Bath and Body Works
✮ $50 Gift Card to Amazon