September 26, 2017

BLOG TOUR REVIEW & EXCERPT: Stud Finder


Lauren Blakely's newest addition to the 1001 Dark Nights collection was the perfect bite-sized fairy tale. Check out my review and an excerpt...

Stud Finder, by Lauren Blakely
Publish Date:
September 26, 2017
Publisher: Evil Eye Concepts, Inc.
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and Inkslinger PR
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon

Rating: 5 STARS


(Synopsis) Man seeking woman: Hot, rich, smart, witty, self-made multimillionaire Internet genius seeks classy, intelligent, sexy, fun-loving woman who’s interested in settling down and sharing all the good things.


There. Best. Ad. Ever.


I will absolutely find the woman of my dreams, someone who’ll love me for me. Even if my sister thinks I need help dating, I’m confident I can pull this off, courtesy of the great worldwide web.

Let me just hit the upload button right now...


***


No. Just no. As a woman and a professional matchmaker, I can’t let Dylan Parker run this ad. He’s the catch of all catches. That’s why his sister has asked me to help her ridiculously good-looking, insanely rich, but socially clueless brother find a woman. As a broker of happily ever afters, I’m known as the Stud Finder since I make a great living pairing wildly successful women with men who won’t fleece them but will adore them. After all, what woman in her right mind wouldn’t fall in love with Dylan?


I mean, besides me. It totally won’t be me.

Stud Finder was the perfect way to spend a lazy weekend afternoon. It allowed me to return to this Big Rock world that Lauren Blakely has created, if only for a short while. The story went by pretty quickly (it IS a novella, after all), but the humor, heat and heart that I've come to expect from Lauren Blakely was still there. 

Dylan is the most adorable rich nerd. He's this tech genius who has made millions and is now looking to find someone to share it with. This guy is not your typical guy. He's actually looking for a commitment - a wife even. But, wading through the gold diggers is more than he can handle. So, his sister enlists the help of her BFF - the so-called "Stud-Finder." 

Evie has made a living out of being a professional matchmaker. Although she usually works with women, she's willing to do a favor for her best friend and try and match Dylan up with the perfect woman. Shouldn't be hard since he's rich, nice, funny AND totally hot. Evie is in denial from the very beginning - it's adorable. She tells herself all the right things - I don't want a relationship. He's my BFF's brother. He's a client. But, when it's right, it's right. And Dylan and Evie are RIGHT. 

Theirs is a slow, sweet burn. Although Evie and Dylan know each other when he hires her, it's only peripherally. As Evie gathers details about Dylan so that she can match him with the perfect woman, they both have the chance to get to know each other without all the usual pressure. 

Stud Finder was a sweet and sexy addition to the awesome Lauren Blakely line-up. 
What am I doing?

Dylan is my client’s brother.

Dylan is now my client.

I’m not interested in a match for myself. I’m not looking for love. I’m focused on work, and Dylan is my work.

The trouble is, my work turns me on more than I expected, and that’s for one elemental reason—I like him.

I like him so very much.

That’s why I jerk this conversation back to the purpose of these get-togethers—prepping him for his princess charming, whoever she may be.

I brush one palm against the other. “The big question is—are you ready for me to set you up on your first date? Or do you think the fall in yoga has set you back?” I wink.

“You think falling in yoga means I’m not ready to date?”

I laugh. Nervously. “Well, not entirely. But it did remind me what we talked about before we had tea. That we all have a bit of dork in us. So, I didn’t know if you wanted to walk through all the potential topics, moments, pitfalls, and so on.”

“Like a pre-date prep? Or maybe even a practice session?”

“Sure, we can practice now if you’d like,” I offer.

He doesn't answer right away. When he does, he takes his time, like he’s making an offer. “Or maybe we can practice in a true date simulation.”

Tingles race over my shoulders. “Like a practice date?”

His eyes twinkle like stars. “I need a practice date badly. Can I take you on one? It would be so helpful to review everything. Make sure I’m ready.”

When he puts it like that… “Yes, of course.”

I want him to put his best foot forward. I didn’t say yes because I want to date him. I wouldn’t do that, even though when he walks away, all I can think is how on earth did I wind up with a pitter-pattering heart for a man I’m handing off to another woman?

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 eighty times, and she's sold more than 2 million books. In October she'll release HARD WOOD, a sexy, standalone romantic comedy. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter! laurenblakely.com/newsletter

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September 12, 2017

BLOG TOUR REVIEW: Lust (Vegas Nights #2)



Lust (Vegas Nights #2), by Emma Hart
Publish Date:
September 12, 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) Detective Adrian Potter had a lot to answer for. I didn’t care that he was tasked with shutting down the city’s most prolific hookers.

I cared that he was stopping me from providing for my daughter.

He didn’t care.

Not at all.

Until I broke down in the backseat of his car… And he let me go.

Adrian was a single parent, too. He knew how hard I had it. At least, he thought he did.

He had a job. He had people who cared. He didn’t know just how lucky he was.

My name is Perrie Fox.

I was a whore of the highest value.

Until Detective Adrian Potter.

Until the tattooed, redemption-seeking detective entered my life, looking for his fairytale.

The cop and the hooker.

Happily ever fucking never.

You’ve met one Fox sibling.

Now meet the other…

I love Emma Hart’s writing. Usually, her stories are laugh-out-loud funny, super sexy and so freaking romantic. Lust is one of the more serious books of hers that I’ve read. It’s still sexy and romantic, but in place of a lot of that trademark snark is a huge depth of emotion. Perrie has not had things easy in the least, and that comes through.

A lot of the necessary comic relief comes in the form of Perrie’s very sassy seven-year-old daughter Lola. I can’t imagine Perrie’s life - that she’s part of one of the wealthiest families in Las Vegas, but because of her horrible adoptive father, she was shunned and can’t access any of the money that is rightfully hers. Like any other mother, she does what she has to do to keep a roof over their head and food in their bellies. But, you can tell, it is slowly killing her soul.

I think her getting caught trying to turn a trick on Adrian was the best thing that ever happened to her. He ends up enlisting her help in rounding up other prostitutes in exchange for a legit paycheck and some self-respect back. And, Adrian ends up having to admit that, despite her chosen profession, Perrie is a pretty awesome woman. It also doesn’t hurt that her daughter and Adrian’s eight-year-old son become fast BFFs.

Lust backs up the established timeline a bit. We actually met Perrie briefly toward the end of Sin (Vegas Nights #1) when Dahlia meets with her about reuniting with Perrie’s estranged brother and then Dahlia offers her a job tending bar at The Scarlet Letter. Lust gives us the chance to witness the events leading up to that meeting. So, we know where Perrie’s frame of mind is when she gets to that meeting. And it came at a really great time.

We also get to move on from that moment in time and see what happens later. The reunion between Perrie and her brother Damien that happened off camera in Sin is now front and center in Lust. We also get to see where Damien and Dahlia are in their relationship.

But, obviously, the relationship that takes center stage here is the one between Perrie and Adrian. The cop and the hooker. But, neither of them can be defined by just those titles. Their individual tragedies have made them complex people who just happen to be perfect for one another.

I don’t know if we’ll get another Vegas Nights book (perhaps about Dahlia’s bar manager Abby?), but if Emma Hart writes it, I’ll read it.

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.

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BLOG TOUR REVIEW: Blood Guard (Mission #1)


Blood Guard (Mission #1), by Megan EricksonPublish Date: September 12, 2017
Publisher: Loveswept
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: adult paranormal romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4.5 STARS


(Synopsis) Tendra: One minute, I’m a bartender in gritty Mission City; the next, I’m whisked away by a vampire named Athan who tells me that I’m the lifeblood of his clan. It sounds unbelievable, but he’s got evidence I can’t deny. Turns out, Athan belongs to an underground society of vampires who feed only on humans with their consent. Their enemies have no such qualms, and they want me dead. The only thing standing in their way is strong, sexy Athan. And the closer we get, the more tempted I am to let Athan feed. . . .

Athan: How could I have known when I snatched this snarky, beautiful human off the streets that she would change mydestiny? As a loyal soldier, I must deliver Tendra to our future king—my brother. Empowered with the blood of ten generations of the Gregorie breed, she is fated to rule as our queen. But there’s something between us that’s so intoxicating, so carnal, I can’t help wanting Tendra for myself . . . even if it’s treason.

I have to admit - I got burned out on vampires. I read Twilight, Sookie Stackhouse, Night Huntress, Black Dagger Brotherhood and Chicagoland Vampires all in the same time period (along with countless other vampire books), and I just kind of got sick of them. It’s been a while since I read a vampire book. I’m glad it was Megan Erickson that broke my dry spell.

Blood Guard is not Megan’s first trip into the paranormal (see her Silver Tip Pack series for that), but it is her first go at the blood suckers. When I read a new vampire book by a new author or a new-to-me author, I’m always most interested in how they will use and spin the mythology we’re all familiar with.

In Megan’s vampire world (which is our own world, so it’s got a gritty, urban fantasy vibe to it), sunlight is deadly, they are long lived and they drink human blood to survive. All very normal vampire traits. But, in true Megan Erickson fashion, there’s a unique element or two added in just to make things extra interesting.

Our heroine, Tendra, is a pretty badass human. She has no knowledge of vampires in the beginning, and we learn that she has just lost her only family and is feeling pretty alone in her small town. She’s in a perfect position for vampire prince Athan to pluck her from her humdrum life and show her that vampires are real. But, she was not a random choice. She has a specific role to fulfill, and he’s here to protect her while they travel so that she can realize her destiny.

Thank goodness that Megan Erickson didn’t have Tendra automatically accept all this as fact right away. I hate when heroines are told vampires are real in books, and after a few half-hearted attempts at denial, they fall in line. Tendra’s a lot tougher than that, and Athan knows he has to offer her some pretty solid proof. Even with all that, it still takes her a short while to come to terms with all of it.

Like she did with the Silver Tip Pack series, Blood Guard doesn't follow every rule for vampires out there. Megan puts her ability to shock the crap out of us to good use. There's a few big twists in store that will surprise you and keep you glued to the pages. Well, those and the super sexiness. Because Tendra and Athan are crazy hot together. Their sexual chemistry builds for awhile because she's been promised to his brother. But, of course, Athan can't keep his hands off her. Thank goodness.

I'm completely sold on Megan Erickson's world of vampires. I can't see what is in store for Athan's brother Idris. 

Megan Erickson is a USA Today bestselling author of romance that sizzles. Her books have a touch of nerd, a dash of humor, and always have a happily ever after. A former journalist, she switched to fiction when she decided she likes writing her own endings better.

She lives in Pennsylvania with her very own nerdy husband and two kids. Although rather fun-sized, she's been told she has a full-sized personality. When Megan isn't writing, she's either lounging with her two cats named after John Hughes characters or... thinking about writing.

Connect with Megan:
Website: meganerickson.org
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authormeganerickson/
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