November 14, 2017

RELEASE DAY REVIEW: At Your Service (Masters & Mercenaries #14.5)

At Your Service (Masters & Mercenaries #14.5), by Lexi Blake
Publish Date:
November 14, 2017
Publisher: DLZ Entertainment
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: adult contemporary suspense romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4.5 STARS

(Synopsis) Juliana O’Neil’s promising future was burned away in the heat of battle. She had been an officer with a bright future in the military, but now she is struggling to survive. Her husband gone and her career in shambles, she finds a job at Top as a hostess and tries to put together the pieces of her life. The last thing she needs is any kind of male attention, but she can’t help but be amused at her neighbor and coworker’s lothario antics. Not that she would have anything to do with him, at least not for more than one night. 

Javier Leones doesn’t understand monogamy. No woman could ever be enough for his endless libido, but he has to admit Juliana has his attention. For reasons he doesn’t fully understand, he can’t seem to get the gorgeous redhead with the sad eyes out of his head. After one scorching night together, he realizes he’ll never be able to get her out of his system. But with his reputation, he fears she’ll never see him as more than a one-night stand.

When their passions collide, these new lovers will be forced to confront Juliana’s past and come to terms with Javier’s present. Will they find their way or will this reservation be canceled at the last minute?

Sweet, talented, manwhore Javier has been on the periphery of the McKay Taggart clan for awhile now. He's Sean Taggart's right hand chef at Top and a new Master at Sanctum. But, recent events have him wanting to become a one-woman man. Only problem is, you spend so long bouncing from one casual fling to the next, and it's hard to find anyone to take you seriously. 

And then there's Juliana. Once upon a time she had it all, and then she joined the military and lost her hand. Now, she is divorced, alienated from the only family she has and unable to do the one thing she loves the most. 

I think Javier's fall from womanizerdom came from a few places. He's seen three of his besties at Top fall in love in recent months, and he gets to see the great relationship that Sean and Grace have all the time. Javier is ready for his turn to find a woman to share his happiness and his burdens with. And taking care of his brother is a new and frustrating burden in his life. 

It was so nice to witness Javier in a vulnerable position for a change. He's always been so confident and charming every other time we've seen him. But, watching his older brother hit rock bottom and realizing he's missing out on a meaningful relationship has turned him into this contemplative guy that's a little out of character. I really liked it on him, though. His vulnerability goes through the roof when he sets his sights on his neighbor Juliana and she tries to turn him into a one-night stand.

Seeing the tables turn on Javier was fun for a minute, but it quickly became pretty frustrating. It was clear he was serious about Juliana and wanted her to take him seriously too, and when she didn't, I felt really badly for Javier and really angry at this girl who was obviously making a huge mistake. 

As Javier and Juliana navigate the choppy relationship waters, we still get some time in with some of our favorite MT and Top couples. And, of course, there's a play party or two that happen. 

Topped is such a fun spin-off addition to the MT world. I love that these relationships happen amid the backdrop of a working restaurant. It doesn't hold the same intrigue, suspense and danger as the M&M series, but there's enough of it to let you know that you're still in the same world. And, of course, the sexy times don't quit. Lexi Blake is so, SO good at writing about relationships with big hurdles, so when the couples overcome them, it's incredibly satisfying. 

November 10, 2017

COVER REVEAL: Miss Mechanic

Have you seen the cover of Emma Hart's upcoming novel MISS MECHANIC? It's SO perfect!

Miss Mechanic, by Emma Hart
Publish Date:
December 12, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

(Synopsis) Two mechanics. One rivalry.

She’ll prove she’s as good as she says she is.

He’ll prove her place isn’t under the hood.

It’s over it.

“Don’t let the bastards get you down.”

For twenty-six years, I lived by my daddy’s motto. Which is why “Mechanic Wanted” is all it takes for me to apply for the job at the garage we once owned.

And I meet the biggest bastard of them all.

Dexter Ryne. Hotter than Hell in July and a firm believer that my place is on reception, taking phone calls and looking pretty. Not getting dirty under the hood of a car.

Determined to prove each other wrong, we make a deal.

I have three weeks to prove my worth as a mechanic. If I don’t, I’m on telephone duty.

If I do, he’ll accept defeat and make my job permanent.

Now, all I have to do is fight my attraction to the cocky little… beep.

Problem is, an engine isn’t the only thing he knows how to make purr…