The Blues might be new to Whiskey River, Texas, but these illegitimate sons of the legendary Boots Kelly are no strangers to charisma.
Xander Blue, IT genius, has always been a love 'em and leave 'em kind of guy. But when he meets the CFO of Kelly Boots, beautiful single mom, Bailey Richmond, he knows he's down for the count.
Bailey Richmond has been there and done that and won't do it again. In Bailey’s eyes, once a player always a player and she and her son have too much at stake to risk it all on a fling. But dark-haired, blue-eyed, sexy Xander Blue makes her question all her rules.
Xander is determined to prove to Bailey that there's more between than chemistry. Can a charming millionaire convince a once bitten, forever shy single mom that she wants more than one night with the bad boy?
When a gorgeous, fun, kind, charming, and hot man falls, it is fun to watch it... Xander is all that and then some. He isn't used to relationships, the lasting kind. But he knows with Bailey he is in trouble from the first time they meet.
The connection between Bailey and Xander is so natural and smooth. They have some serious fireworks going on between them. And they don't mind to explore them, either. As long as Xander stays away from Seth, her son.
The conflict between them, and in the relationship, comes from Bailey's inability to trust, after what she went through in the past.
I liked the straight talk they had with each other, the honesty, no games. They admit when they are wrong, and make plans for avoiding that kind of conflict again.
Xander with Seth is just adorable! Those two have an instant connection, understanding, and trust. It is sweet, and so cute.
Fun, sexy, and entertaining, fast read for the weekend!
~ Four Spoons
An edge-of-your-seat suspense and fearless romance!
Bud Mac Phearson’s job is to protect Mallory Christiani and her young daughter, Emily — not to get personally involved with either.
But after Emily disappears and the trail leads directly to a well-known crime boss, Mac can’t refuse the beautiful single mother’s pleas for help.
With assassins hot on their trail and danger around every corner, the tentative partners race to find the missing key needed for the ransom…even as they try to fight the attraction blooming between them.
But when Mac trades his own life for Emily’s, Mallory must risk it all to save the man she’s come to love…
A true 'throwback Thursday' yesterday, when I started to read this story. It was originally published in 1990, and now published as a reader's favorite. It has a 'dated stamp' on it, with talks of the Vietnam war, phone booths, Volvo, typewriter, and VCR, it all made me smile and think about how much the world around has truly changed in a short period of a time.
But the story itself was full of intense action, danger and fear are constant companions. The desperation, agony and despair for Emily is palpable. Mallory's terror is real.
The romance is slow to build. Mac has disliked Mallory for years, not even knowing her. He has preconceived notions about people with money and certain background, and Mallory has always fit the bill in his mind for a spoiled princess.
At first the affection between them was more of comfort and compassion. And when the attraction and intimacy comes, even that is tainted by Mac's suspicion of Mallory's judgement.
After all the high-speed action, plotting to escape, and the future still very much uncertain, I felt the story could have used an epilogue.
But overall, a refreshing step back to the nineties, in a story filled with suspense, threats and menace
~ Four Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
Tasty Book Tours is thrilled to Present
the Cover for the Upcoming Brightwater Romance...
BEST WORST MISTAKE
Releasing Oct 20th, 2015
The third sexy and emotional novel in debut Avon author Lia Rileyâs Brightwater series set in the mountains of Northern California
Sometimes the worst mistakes turn out to be the bestâ¦
Smoke jumper Wilder Kane once reveled in the rush from putting out dangerous wildfires. But after a tragic accident, heâs cut himself off from the world, refusing to leave his isolated cabin. When a headstrong beauty bursts in, Wilder finds himself craving the fire she ignites in him, but letting anyone near his darkness would be a mistake.
After her Hollywood life went up in smoke, Quinn Higsby decided to leave Tinseltown behind and returned to Brightwater to care for her ailing father. Spending her days in a small bookstore, her peaceful existence is up-ended by a fascinating but damaged man. Quinn is determined to not to be scared off by Wilder, not once sheâs experienced the heat of his passions.
But when an arsonist targets the community and Wilder is accused, he must confront the ghosts of his past. Will his desire for Quinn flameout or will he be able to tame the wildness inside and rekindle a hope for their future?
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Lia Riley writes offbeat New Adult and Contemporary Adult romance. After studying at the University of Montana-Missoula, she scoured the world armed only with a backpack, overconfidence and a terrible sense of direction. She counts shooting vodka with a Ukranian mechanic in Antarctica, sipping yerba mate with gauchos in Chile and swilling XXXX with stationhands in Outback Australia among her accomplishments.
A British literature fanatic at heart, Lia considers Mr. Darcy and Edward Rochester as her fictional boyfriends. Her very patient husband doesn't mind. Much. When not torturing heroes (because c'mon, who doesn't love a good tortured hero?), Lia herds unruly chickens, camps, beach combs, daydreams about future books, wades through a mile-high TBR pile and schemes yet another trip. Right now, Icelandic hot springs and Scottish castles sound mighty fine.
Check out the other books in the Brightwater Series
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The World of Nightwalkers #5
Releasing Aug 25th, 2015
From New York Times bestselling author Jacquelyn Frank comes the final chapter in the Nightwalkers saga! As the momentous showdown with a powerful demon unfolds, a passionate encounter breaks the ultimate taboo.
Kamen is a Bodywalker, an ancient soul reborn in one human host after another. Heâs also a prisoner of his own kind: for it was Kamen who released Apep, the deadly god who threatens the existence of their world. To atone for this grievous error, Kamen accepts an urgent mission: to convince the other nations of the Nightwalkers to set aside their centuries-old conflicts and band together. If he fails, all will be lost. And no tribe presents a greater challenge than the Wraiths, the spectral beings who are feared and despised for their lethal deathtouch.
Kamen makes first contact with a stunning, ghostly pale beauty named GeneviÃ¨ve. Part Wraith and part human, scorned as a half-breed, ViÃ¨ve shares the hunger for redemptionâand for connection. Her scintillating touch holds the kiss of death, and yet it makes Kamen feel more alive than ever. Soon his lips are pressed against hers, sending ViÃ¨ve into fits of desire and forging a bond that breaches the divide between them. Now they must unite all the Nightwalkers, from Vampire and Shadowdweller to Djynns, and fastâfor Apep is ready for war.
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Jacquelyn Frank is the New York Times bestselling author of the Immortal Brothers series (Cursed by Fire, Cursed by Ice, Bound by Sin, and Bound in Darkness), the World of Nightwalkers series (Forbidden, Forever, Forsaken, Forged, and Nightwalker), the Three Worlds series (Seduce Me in Dreams and Seduce Me in Flames), the Nightwalkers series (Adam, Jacob, Gideon, Elijah, Damien, and Noah), the Shadowdwellers novels (Ecstasy, Rapture, and Pleasure), and the Gatherers novels (Hunting Julian and Stealing Katherine). She lives in North Carolina and has been writing romantic fiction ever since she picked up her first teen romance at age thirteen.
Isabella Russ, known simply as Bella or Bella the Enforcer, had found herself living in New Mexico for the better part of seven months now. It was necessary for her to be there in order to work closely with Kamenwati, the Bodywalkersâ most learned man. So she had moved and, with great reluctance, brought her children to the compound as well. The god Apep knew where the compound was and had already made an attack on it. It was dangerous to have them there.
But living apart from them for days at a time? Unacceptable. She would not be a ghost in her childrenâs lives during the most important years of their development. True, Leah was ten now and more than capable of being independent of her mother for short stretches of time, but her son was not. He was just exiting his toddler years, having only recently learned all the basics of walking and potty training and other such milestones for a child of three going on four.
But she struggled constantly with the idea of them being potentially in the line of fire. Luckily their father was there and he had always been able to protect them. And several of their friends from the other Nightwalkers in the First Faction were there as well. There were Sagan and Valera, the former Shadowdweller priest and his natural Witch wife; Jasmine and Adam, the Vampire princeâs most trusted aide and her Demon husband; Windsong, one of the Mistral leaders; and Jinaeri, a Lycanthrope scholar.
Together it meant that every member of the First Faction was represented. As for the Second Faction, so far there were numerous Bodywalkers, a Night Angel named Faith and her human husband, Leo, who often acted as a translator and who came with some mercenary skills of his own. There was a Djynn named Kat and her Gargoyle husbandâalthough the Gargoyles were not technically members of the Second Faction because they were the scions of the Bodywalkers. Sheâd learned that Gargoyles had been created by Templars to be used as slaves. Other than that, there was no representation of the Mysticals, no one from the Phoenixes and no one from the Wraiths . . . although to hear the Second Faction tell it, this was a good thing.
But Bella couldnât escape the thought that they needed to have the Phoenixes and Mysticals there. As she got dressed for the night she thought about it more and more. If they were going to get out of this mess they needed all hands on deck.
An idea that was supported only an hour later when she met up with Kamen and he revealed his discovery, via Leo who was interpreting between the two.
âBut if what youâre saying is true, then we have to get the Phoenixes and Mysticals on board. And the Wraiths.â
âWeâll have to do this without the Wraiths. Trust me, they are too deadly to be dealt with.â
âWell, weâll have to deal with at least one of them according to this. I think it means we need a party of twelve to defeat Apep,â Bella said.
âSurely you arenât thinking of sending just twelve people to fight a god?â Kamen was aghast.
âOf course not! But we have to have at least twelve. One from each nation. That means you have to make nice with a Wraith.â
Kamen thought about this a moment. âThen it seems itâs clear what we have to do here. We have to make contact with each of these groups and get representatives from each to come here.â
âAnd who are you going to get to do that?â Leo asked. âThe last time we met up with Wraiths they almost killed Faith and me.â
âI donât know, but someone has to try,â Kamen said.
âWe should start with the Phoenixes and Mysticals first. Begin with the easy ones,â Bella said.
âEasy? Weâve been trying to contact them and get them to cooperate for months now. They arenât all that interested,â Kamen said.
âWell then, we need to send someone to make it interesting for them,â Bella said.
Kamen grew quiet then said, âIt should be me.â
âYou? Why you? We need you here, researching how to break this curse.â
âI have to do this,â Kamen said firmly. âI have to do something other than study books. You can take over doing it just as easily as I can for now. Let me go to the courts of the other three Nightwalkers.â
âSo youâre going to reach out to the Wraiths?â
âWe have to at least try to approach them. They might surprise us.â
âOr they might kill you. No way. No way are you going alone. At the very least you should take Leo. Heâs human and immune to their deathtouch.â
âOr so we believe,â Kamen retorted. âThereâs no proof of that.â
âYou canât go alone. It would be suicide.â
âItâs homicide to risk more than one life . . . and it will look less threatening if one is sent as opposed to a cadre of Nightwalkers showing up on their doorstep.â
âHe has a point,â Leo added. âOne trained man can get in a lot better than six. I just donât know if Iâd call Kamen a trained man.â
âI can take care of myself,â Kamen said harshly. âI was second only to Odjit when it came to Templar power. I can keep the Wraiths off me long enough to get them to talk and I can escape more quickly than anyone else. It would be better if I didnât have anyone else to worry about in the process.â
âIâm convinced,â Leo said. âI just donât think youâre going to convince Jackson.â
âIf you want to convince the leader of the Politic Bodywalkers to let you do this,â Bella said, âyou better meet with him alone. There are too many people here who think the worst of you and will shoot you down before you can say boo about it.â
âI am aware of that,â Kamen said grimly. âBut getting Jackson alone will not be an easy trick for me.â
âIt would be for me,â Leo said. âHeâs my best friend after all. If I ask him to meet me alone, heâll come alone. Bella, you can stay here and work,â Leo said, indicating the mounds of books that had been brought into the library for her and Kamen to go through together.
She nodded and let them go. She crossed her fingers though. There were too many variables that made it a bad idea all around. But she had a feeling Kamen was going to convince Jackson . . . or die trying.
There's something I feel like I should tell you about my review process, before I get to the next review. As you can see, both of them are from Montana, and both of them have Maverick in them... Well, this is not intentional from my part.
Most of the books I read are advanced reader copies, that I get from tour companies, publishers, NetGalley, Edelweiss, or from the authors themselves. Usually these ARCs arrive months ahead, and I put them in my calendar by the title of the book, to the closest date I have free upon books publishing date. The books show up in my kindle with the title name, and often with the email address the book was sent from (for example kindle@netgalley).
By the time I get into the book, most often I don't know the author or genre of the book, the books open with from the beginning of the story, so I don't even have the cover image to go by. So my opinion of the story comes truly from the story, and the coincidence of two same types of books being reviewed close to each other, is completely that, coincidence. Just thought I should point all this out, before getting into the review of the other Montana Maverick.
THE CURIOUS CASE OF DETECTIVE DREAMY
Rust Creek Ramblings
By now, you’ve all heard about Lani Dalton, everyone’s favorite Ace in the Hole bartender. Observed singing and dancing fully clothed in the park fountain on the Fourth of July, she was hauled off to jail dripping wet by dashing detective Russ Campbell. Readers, what would you do if you found yourselves in the strong arms of the law?
Since then, Lani’s been reluctant to revisit the Case of the Spiked Wedding Punch. Because helping the arrestingly handsome Russ crack the case could risk breaching family confidentiality — and Lani never breaks a promise! So why does Russ keep showing up at the Ace? We at The Gazette would never kiss and tell, but reports of Lani and Russ’s mutual distrust are greatly exaggerated...
This story has me chuckling from the beginning, I really enjoyed the authors' humorous way to write the story.
Lani and Russ both haven't been lucky in love, and are avoiding a relationship. The attraction is there, but Russ had gone to lengths to avoid doing anything about it.
Until the night of the wedding, when Lani does everything she can to get arrested, to save her brother, with some interesting results.
That wedding reception has surprising effects on a lot of the town folks. The punch at the reception was spiked, and people were acting out of character.
The sheriff asks Russ to help to solve the case of spiked punch, and says Loni is the best person to help him.
To be able to do so, they start to pretend to be dating, but that pretense seems awfully real...
I loved the family loyalty, and the close relationship the siblings have. The way Loni's dad, the lawyer, interrogate Loni, was pure entertainment.
Russ and Loni had their hands full, with their jobs, the investigation, and with each other. The connection between them was believable, and the talk of the town. They work on their issues, slowly learn to trust each other, and find a way to communicate with each other. They are fun, adorably sweet, and passionate.
The town folks are not shy at all to get involved in each others business, in any matter. And everyone has their opinion about the spiked punch nearly everyone drank.
Humorous, warm, and delightful story! I enjoyed it, and am looking forward to the next installation in the series, maybe we finally find out, who made the whole town to act so crazy
~ Four Spoons
During Flynn Bensen‘s last wildfire rescue, a woman died despite Flynn’s best efforts to save her. He can’t escape his sense of failure or recurring nightmares, but he can escape to Marietta, Montana, to a new job as the head of Crawford County Search and Rescue. When he meets his scorching hot co-worker on his first day, Flynn feels like he might have just jumped from one wild fire to another that threatens to burn out of control despite his determination to keep a safe distance.
Outspoken, direct, and ambitious Kat Robinson isn’t thrilled to have a new boss—after all, if the timing had been different, she’d have been a shoe-in for Flynn’s job. But a single mom of a ten-year-old son knows where her priorities lay—with Brady, the light of her life. No way is she looking for a relationship and co-workers are always off limits. Too bad Flynn’s so darn hot, gorgeous, kind and authentic.
Will Flynn be the hero Kat needs to help her find the courage to fall in love again?
There was something very real and lifelike in this touching novel. The story has several voices in it, his, hers and her son's. It gives it more spice, more layers, and makes the situation well understood, well rounded. The insights to the characters makes them easy to like, and relate to.
I admire how respectfully the author has always handled serious situations, like this time the autistic son, Brady, and his condition, emotions, and situations are handled with great respect, in a real, tasteful way.
Flynn and Kat both came to Marietta, Montana to start their lives anew. They are working together, and that is not the best place for the instant attraction they feel for each other. There are some humorous situations they are put because of the work they do, as well as serious emergencies, that made me bite my nails and hold my breath.
There's some family drama, and clearly shown how past mistakes can affect into today's life, even if those mistakes were not ours.
A great addition to the Montana Mavericks series, a tender and compassionate story of learning to trust, and taking the risk of leaping into the future, grasping the life we are given, and living it fully
~ Five Spoons
Former Navy SEAL turned marine rescue firefighter Brad Silverman is tasked with his toughest mission yet: taking care of his best friend's wife.
The only problem is that Scarlett Harrison has always been the one-the one who got away, the one who held his heart, and the one who has always been off limits...
Now widowed Scarlett returns to her childhood home in St. Louis, determined to get her life back on track. She misses her husband but can't fight the attraction she feels for sexy fireman Brad.
As she spends more time with him, the connection they have had since high school grows stronger. Are they finally ready to overcome their pasts and lose their hearts to each other?
This is a super sweet second chance romance, that made me shed a tear, cause at times the pain of loss is so deep and raw.
And yes, the sorrow and heartache hang heavy over the story. Scarlett is ready to move on, ready to start a new life, life for herself a bit more, and not just survive from day to day. She made the decision, she moved to St Louis, maybe that will help with the fresh start, maybe she can find her place again in her old hometown.
Brad is carrying his own burden, the survivor's guilt is weighing him down. But as Scarlett with her daughter settle in his house, the old attraction from high school days is suddenly stronger than ever.
It really is a sweet tale, I liked that the conflict and drama between them was kept to the minimum, since there was already the angst of losing Todd.
I am a sucker for a navy SEAL, if you follow the blog and my reviews, you might have caught up on that.
So the story is adorable with a little girl and her kitten, charming and delightful with a love that grows naturally and seems so right, with couple hot scenes where it's demonstrated. A great read for a late summer evening
~ Four Spoons
The hunted becomes the hunter as the past threatens a small Texas town once again...
Rancher Brody Fields stops cold when he receives a plea for help from Rebecca Hughes. The one-time love of his life, who was abducted along with her brother fifteen years ago, now believes the kidnapper has returned to tie up loose ends. Rebecca needs Brody’s help bringing the kidnapper — or killer — to justice.
For Brody the job is risky, but that the real danger is their unexpected Texas-sized attraction. As they uncover answers to difficult — and deadly — questions, Brody has a question of his own: can he trust the woman who once shattered his heart?
The story takes off with an adrenaline spike, setting up the scene what Rebecca is against of when trying to solve the fifteen year old kidnapping.
She asks help from Brody, her high school sweetheart, she left behind. The investigation of the old crime is tedious, with no real leads, or anything solid to pursue. Rebecca's desperation for any lead is heartbreaking, her emotions are raw with every disappointment they face.
I liked how the old high school friends were getting together again, and forming new relationships as adults. They were all willing to help Rebecca, and stood by her during this difficult time.
The friends also saw that the attraction between Rebecca and Brody was back, hotter than ever, and were giving their opinions about it, since they still remembered how broken Brody was after the last break up. And that break up is also something Brody hangs on to, holding back, not sure if he could trust Rebecca again. Even after a steamy love scene, Brody still questions their feelings and Rebecca's loyalty.
The story doesn't consist much action, mostly investigation, mixed with few short peaks of danger and fear. It is interesting to see, how little pieces of information all finally fit together like the pieces of a puzzle. Most of the intensity came from the tension between Rebecca and Brody, as they are trying to figure out their relationship as adults.
This is a first installment of a series, where a group of high school friends is introduced, as they come together as adults, to help Rebecca and Brody to solve the old crime. Lots of characters, little clues to solve the crime, and a second chance romance, where danger and fear have been constantly present in Rebecca's mind, until she finds peace of mind in Brody's arms.
An interesting first installment of the series, that awakens curiosity to what more is to come
~ Four Spoons
Meet the Mitchell brothers of Fool’s Gold, California—five gorgeous men who’ve left a trail of broken hearts in their wake…
Maya Farlow learned the hard way to depend only on herself, so when she fell too deeply for the bad-boy charms of Del Mitchell, she did the only thing she could—she ran. Stunned, Del left Fool’s Gold to make his name and fortune in extreme sports.Now ten years later, Maya’s been hired to promote her hometown’s new slogan, The Destination for Romance. The celebrity spokesman is none other than Del, the man she dumped but never forgot. Awkward!Although Del’s not the type to hold a grudge, he’s determined to avoid falling a second time for the woman who broke his heart. He’s a daredevil, not an idiot. Trouble is, in all his adventures, he never found a rush as exhilarating as Maya’s kiss. Maybe risking his heart will prove to be the biggest thrill of all…
Series: Fool’s GoldMass
Market Paperback: 368 pages
Publisher: HQN Books (July 28, 2015)
A light summer read about small town living and second chance in love with teenage sweethearts, with lots of details of documentary filming and planning.
Yes, after reading this story, I now know more about the 'making a documentary' and filming process, that I ever thought I wanted to. I liked that the characters have a passion for it, work so well as a team, and want to make the world a better place. But it did get more attention than I expected.
I really enjoyed the previous book in the series, Kiss Me, and it was nice to see now, how much Zane had changed, since he fell in love with Phoebe. In Kiss Me Maya was a force to be reckoned with, fiery and sassy, I kind of missed that in this story.
Del and Maya have the connection from ten years ago, they were engaged to be married, until there was a bad break up. The romance between them is a typical second chance romance with trust issues.
Del's family likes to keep secrets, and one of the subplots is about his mother, Maya's friend, having a breast cancer, and keeping it from her family.
There were lots of drama and issues within the family, and it was mentioned many times that keeping secrets were the family way, that's why I found Del's reaction to Maya's loyalty to keep his mother's secret an over play.
This was an easy read, nice and warmhearted romance story, with the quirks of living in a small town, where everyone knew each other. I missed some of the intensity from the previous book in the series, where there were several dangerous situations, with emotional highs and lows. I think that could have helped the story move forward with a more rapid pace, as well.
~ Three Spoons
New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery has won the hearts of millions of readers around the world with books described as “immensely entertaining, intensely emotional” (RT Book Reviews), “hilarious” (Fort Worth Star-Telegram), and “heartwarming” (Publishers Weekly). One major retailer recently described her as “the queen of romantic fiction.” While she deeply appreciates the accolades of critics and booksellers, Mallery is even more honored by the enthusiasm of her readers and the word-of-mouth that catapults her toward the top of the bestsellers lists time and again.Mallery lives in not-so-sunny Seattle with her husband and a toy poodle who makes her laugh every day and who’s not even a little bit impressed by her growing fame.
Connect with Susan Website | Facebook | Twitter
Denver Heroes # 3
By: Kathy Clark
Releasing August 18, 2015
Sure to thrill readers of Nora Roberts and Karen Robards, the breathtaking Denver Heroes series from New York Times bestselling author Kathy Clark continues as two adrenaline junkies find themselves fighting unexpected passion—and unspeakable terror.
Ex-soldier Chris Wilson lost too many friends to war. Back home in Denver, he’s trying to make a difference as a paramedic, treating victims of crisis situations. Not even active combat could prepare Chris for the rush he gets when violence and tragedy collide, but the job isn’t the only thing making his heart race. His partner is his closest confidant from childhood, and the girl he remembers is now a strong, sensual woman . . . who needs him more than ever.
Sara Richards is more comfortable risking her life than asking for help. The petite blonde medic put a wall around her heart long ago, vowing to never let anyone hurt her again. Only now her long-buried secrets threaten to destroy everything she’s built. And though she should be able to trust Chris, his smoldering blue-gray eyes ignite desires that feel more dangerous than whatever’s lurking in the shadows. For once, Sara can’t go it alone. But Chris might just be stubborn enough to stand by her side as she faces down her worst nightmare.
Heart-rending, emotional story of survival, with lots of gory details and bloody situations.
Sara is a strong woman, a true survivor, who has been able to build a successful life for herself, despite the tragedy of her childhood, that no one is aware of. The story starts with a prologue, that is not for the faint at heart, and continues from there to the adrenaline filled work situation, that Sara and Chris face daily, as EMTs.
Chris has a need to protect and serve those around him. The way he takes care of his former mate of military, Miller, is touching.
I liked both Sara and Chris, the characters are deep, they have faced tragedy, pain, and sorrow, but are working with the issues they have, they support each other when needed, and the passion between them is tender and loving. They have been friends since their childhood, but now as work partners and roommates, get to know the person their grew up to be. The attraction and interest between them is realistic, and the built up of the relationship is credible. I wish the book would have concentrated a bit more into the building of the relationship, and the characters. Because there are lots of stories of their daily life as EMTs, going into a great detail, that in my opinion, made the story move slowly, and the possible messages it could have delivered were lost in the excess of details.
There were lots of potential for deep, meaningful moments and messages, since the story touches many sensitive, and sometimes raw, issues, like suicide, PTSD, problems with legalized drugs, sexual abuse, domestic abuse, etc.
With the struggle and pain from the past, both Chris and Sara go through a journey to heal and conquer their past demons, with the support and love from each other, and the family and friends who stand beside them. A poignant, moving, and yet a joyful story of the healing power of love
~ Three Spoons and a teaspoon on the side
Welcome to Storybook Lake, where dreams come true.
Not all fairy tales have a happy ending. Jocelyn learned that the hard way, when she married her high school sweetheart Keaton Shaw—only to have him break her heart.
But that was a long time ago. The papers were signed, the divorce finalized, and Jocelyn is no longer a little girl with her head in the clouds. That’s why no one in Storybook can believe it when Keaton, the All-American dream boy, walks into Jocelyn’s bakery, looking as sweet as one of her frosted cupcakes, and demanding a second chance with the woman he still calls his wife.
Every time I choose a book to read, I do so with the consideration, that I will invest my time on it, and I wish to invest it wisely, so I want to like the books I read.
This story is a mess. Mainly for the reason that the heroine Jocelyn is a mess, a train wreck really. The story is told in first person, by only from her point of view, so it is her mess that the readers see and experience.
The story goes back and forth between present day and the past.
Jocelyn is abrasive, loud, and obnoxious, both as a teenager and as a thirty year old. I tried so hard to like her, but I couldn't find much there to like.
I did like Keaton, all the way to the end, when he finally comes clean about the past and the three years they had been apart. But what he did, was just not acceptable in my mind.
And I don't even want to start with Dani, all I am going to say, that I wish the story would have shown her getting some much needed professional help.
There is so much drama, angst and turmoil, just in between Jocelyn and Keaton, both in the past and the present. And when you add to that the all details that are shared from Jocelyn's twin brother and mother's lives, it is just overflowing.
This is the first time ever, when I have read a romance novel, that I wished the hero and heroine would have walked away from each other, because they seemed to bring the worse out on each other, and I just couldn't see how the actions of the past could have been forgiven and forgotten and moved on, towards a healthy relationship. As that was not the case, maybe an epilogue could have saved me from all the doubts the story left.
In any case, obviously, this story wasn't for me, no matter how hard I tried to like it
When the local fire fighter of a small town falls out of a tree to land at her feet, Elissa didn’t expect it to be the same sweet man who’d sat with her while she cried on his hotel balcony.
Simon had never forgotten the woman who had fled into the rainy city night, now here she was for a wedding.
Hurt and betrayed, she’s looking for a new life.
Can he convince her to make him a part of it?
Angela Verdenius is on my top 5 list of favorite authors. I love her BBW series, because they are full of great friends, lots of fun, memorable characters, that are easy to relate to, and life changing moments in the characters' lives that help them grow as a person, with the addition of a little bit of action.
Gully's Fall, the newest series, has been all that as well. Simon, the laid back, always eating fireman, is in focus in Fly With Me. After meeting Elissa, Simon turns into the protective, possessive (in a nice way) alpha male, to all his friends delight. But there's more to Simon than what it seems at the first glance, there's a complex, loving, caring man under the laid back exterior.
Elissa has her troubles at home, and barely holding it together, when she arrives to town for her best friend's wedding. The one encounter in the past between Simon and Elissa, gives them something to build upon as friends, even though Simon is hoping for so much more. Even though Elissa is a big, beautiful woman, the issues she is having to deal with are more centered around her parents and her career, than her size and curves.
Simon and Elissa are so sweet together, the connection is real, the feelings are growing, and the attraction is strong between them. Simon adores everything about Elissa, and in his arms, she feels safe.
The circle of friends was as rowdy as they always have been, if not even more so, when it comes to the girls. I think the banter between the ladies took a step to the worse this time, and could have been toned down a bit.
More than before, the story was built around the characters, and their cats, there wasn't so much action as before.
But as always, visiting with the gang at the Gully's Fall is like meeting with old friends, I cherish reading these books, and like this one, saved it for my vacation this summer.
~ Four Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
When the past and present collide…
Taya Kostas is a survivor. She’s clawed her way back from the hell she was subjected to at the hands of an undercover agent working for the U.S. government. Since then she’s dedicated her life to preventing the same from happening to anyone else. Now her story has come full circle. She’s about to take the stand as the key federal witness in the biggest terrorist case the country has seen in years. But even though the man responsible for her nightmares is behind bars, the evil she escaped is still hunting her. When fate places her safety in the hands of the man who saved her life once before, together they race to stay one step ahead of a lethal enemy.
He’ll risk it all to save her.
For five years Special Agent Nathan Schroder has been battling his inner demons, but lately it seems like he’s on the verge of losing that fight. Then Taya is suddenly thrust back into his life and in imminent danger, so he steps in to protect her. He’s never forgotten her or the way she held up under fire, and this time he’s not letting her walk away. The terrorists determined to prevent her from testifying will stop at nothing to silence her forever. She might be in official protective custody, but she’s way more than a job to Nate. When the enemy finally strikes and her life hangs in the balance, he’ll do anything to keep her safe.
Kaylea Cross' military books are some of my all time favorite, I love her style of writing, the rhythm of the stories, and how they flow. The characters are strong, capable, and fierce, yes, the female leads, and the heroes are completely swoon worthy.
In Avenged, Nathan isn't doing well. He is part of the elite HRT team, performing his job, but his mental state of mind is crumbling. The nightmares are constant, he is sleep deprived, and to feel something, anything, he is using one night stands for sex.
If he can't pull himself together, he will soon lose all that is important to him, his job and team mates.
And then he meets Taya again. The connection between them is amazing. It was formed under the most difficult times, but it is real, honest, and pure. Taya is a true survivor, she worked with herself, until the nightmare of her past was just that, in her past. I admire her character, and all that she stood for, was capable of.
Taya presence alone, calms Nathan and his nightmares. There's a scene in the book, where Taya helps Nathan to start to deal with the mental wounds, let's him cry in his arms, face his demons, grieve for his friend, and feel her acceptance of him as he is. A very powerful scene!
The romance between Nathan and Taya is hot, passionate, and sweet. Taya surely brings the best out of Nathan, his tender, caring, protective, romantic side, as he is willing to do anything and give up everything, to take care of Taya.
The fear and danger are constantly present, but the true action comes at the end of the story, and it is brutal, bloody, and deadly.
The characters are deep and complex, very likable, easy to understand. The action and danger elements were intense, and the events from five years ago, when Nathan and Taya met are lived through flashbacks, and nightmares. Overall Avenged is a great romantic suspense, but I admit, not my favorite in the series. And couple grammar mistakes in the story really took me by surprise.
~ Four Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
Make You Burn
The Deacons of Bourbon Street # 1
By: Megan Crane
Releasing August 4, 2015
Meet the Deacons of Bourbon Street, bad boy bikers who are hell on wheels—and heaven between the sheets. Megan Crane revs up an irresistible new series co-written with Rachael Johns, Jackie Ashenden, and Maisey Yates.
Sean “Ajax” Harding’s oaths are inked into his skin. Once second-in-command of the Deacons of Bourbon Street motorcycle club, he left New Orleans to protect the brotherhood, and only the death of his beloved mentor, Priest Lombard, could lure him back. Walking into the old hangout gives him a familiar thrill—especially when he gets an eyeful of the bar’s delectable new owner. A wild ride with her is just the welcome Ajax needs. Then he realizes that she’s Priest’s daughter, all grown up and totally off limits.
Sophie Lombard loved her father, not his lifestyle. She’s done with bikers . . . until Ajax roars into town—arrogant, tough, and sexy as ever. And although he treats her like the Catholic schoolgirl he once knew, Sophie’s daydreams tend to revolve around sin. With the very real possibility of heartbreak looming, Sophie knows better than to get too close to an outlaw. But every touch from Ajax is steamier than the Louisiana bayou—and heat like this may just be worth getting burned.
This close, she could see too much. Entirely too much. The years hadn’t been particularly kind to Ajax, but then, he’d started off entirely too pretty for his own good. She remembered him in his feral early twenties, bright and blonde and so stunning that tourists had followed him around the French Quarter like they thought he was a harmless wolf cub set loose from his pack, like that hard smile of his was merely teeth and there was something more than violence in his sweet blue eyes.
I’m so glad you came back from Afghanistan in one piece, she’d heard one of the besotted tourists giggle at him once upon a very late night, over at one of the Priory tables with her too- short denim skirt already shoved out of his way.
And Ajax had responded, that angelic face of his never quite as hard as those eyes, No one comes back in one piece, bitch. With his hands high on her thighs and murder in his tone. They just come home.
His face was leaner now. Tougher. Less angel, more warrior. This Ajax wore his danger and his power right there on his face, in the lines that made his eyes look bluer, in the beard that made him look like the walking calamity he was, and no one would mistake this man for anything but that, blue eyes or not. He was lethal. And Sophie couldn’t help but think that he was far more beautiful for it, God help her. A battered, dark gold, finely-honed machine of a man, and he was grinning at her like he already had her pants at her knees and her ass over the nearest table.
No small part of her wished he did.
And she was fucked, because once that image was in her head, she couldn’t think of anything else—and she was positive he could read it right there on her face.
“You better tell your girl to put down that phone,” he said softly, so softly and so close that Sophie had to blink to make sense of it, so entranced was she by that mouth of his. “If the police show up in the middle of my homecoming party I might lose my sense of humor.”
“I’m fine, Danielle,” she called, and the bartender behind them froze, her cell phone clenched tight in her hand. “Sean here is just an old friend of my father’s.”
“You don’t have any idea when to quit, do you?”
“Because you, of course, are the model of restraint.”
That dangerous curve of his mouth tightened, and so did everything inside of her. “I’m not the mouthy piece of ass pinned up against the back of a bar, with a golden opportunity to rethink my attitude. If I were you, I’d take it.”
“I’m not afraid of you.”
Ajax studied her. “Then you’re as dumb as you act. Bad combination, babe. Especially in this neighborhood.”
“Should I interpret that as concern for my well-being?” she asked, her voice as acidic as it was sweet. “It’s hard to tell while you’re choking me out.”
A different sort of grin lit his face then, changing that look in his eyes and then dancing all over her. He shifted, sliding that big, hard hand of his up over her chin and then dragging his thumb over her lower lip, slowly. The grin drained from his face as he watched and he looked . . . hungry. Needy. Then he tested her teeth on the way back with the pad of that big thumb of his, and the urge to close her lips around him was so intense, so overwhelming, she lost her train of thought.
There was only Ajax, big and threatening and so beautiful it was making her shake.
He did it again. And it was the way he did it. It was pure sex in a simple little scrape of his thumb on her lip, then against her teeth, and it was dirty as all fuck.
Ajax lifted his gaze to hers then, and his blue eyes had gone hot. It shuddered through her, intent and heavy. A threat, she told herself. Dark and hard and life-altering. A distinct and deliberate threat.
But she was far more worried it was a promise.
Megan Crane is a New Jersey native who had great plans to star on Broadway, preferably in Evita, just like Patti LuPone. Sadly, her inability to wow audiences with her singing voice required a back-up plan. Accordingly, she graduated from Vassar College and got her MA and PhD in literature from the University of York in England. She wrote her doctoral dissertation on AIDS literature, mostly so she could wallow in her obsession with the remarkable multimedia artist David Wojnarowicz and her idol, the bitter and hilarious David Feinberg. After many years in the rain and subject to the whim of seasons, she followed the sun to Los Angeles, where she lives with too many pets and an artist named Jeff. She is still plotting her Broadway debut.
Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads
Books & Spoons with Tasty Book Tours present: Cover Reveal for AMERICA'S FIRST DAUGHTER By Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie
Tasty Book Tours is Pleased to Present...
AMERICA'S FIRST DAUGHTER
Stephanie Dray & Laura Kamoie
Releasing March 1st, 2016
In a compelling, richly researched novel that draws from thousands of letters and original sources, bestselling authors Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie tell the fascinating, untold story of Thomas Jeffersonâs eldest daughter, Martha âPatsyâ Jefferson Randolphâa woman who kept the secrets of our most enigmatic founding father and shaped an American legacy.
From her earliest days, Martha âPatsyâ Jefferson knows that though her father loves his family dearly, his devotion to his country runs deeper still. As Thomas Jeffersonâs oldest daughter, she becomes his helpmate in the wake of her motherâs death, traveling with him when he becomes American minister to France. And it is in Paris, at the glittering court and among the first tumultuous days of revolution, that she learns of her fatherâs liaison with Sally Hemings, a slave girl her own age.
Patsy too has fallen in loveâwith her fatherâs protÃ©gÃ©, William Short, a staunch abolitionist intent on a career in Europe. Heartbroken at having to decide between being Williamâs wife or a devoted daughter, she returns to Virginia with her father and marries a man of his choosing, raising eleven children of her own.
Yet as family secrets come to light during her fatherâs presidency, Patsy must again decide how much she will sacrifice to protect his reputation, in the process defining not just Jeffersonâs political legacy, but that of the nation he founded.
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LAURA CROGHAN KAMOIE is a historian specializing in colonial and revolutionary America, Virginia history, and the history of slavery. She holds a M.A. and Ph.D. in American history from The College of William and Mary and has published two historical monographs, including Irons in the Fire: The Business History of the Tayloe Family and the Virginia Gentry, 1700-1865 (University Press of Virginia, 2007). Laura is an Associate Professor of History at the U.S. Naval Academy. In her fourteen years of college teaching, she has taught numerous graduate and undergraduate courses on colonial America, revolutionary America, African-American Slavery, as well as seminars on Thomas Jefferson.
As LAURA KAYE, she is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over a dozen titles in contemporary and paranormal romance. Her books have won numerous industry awards, including the EPIC eBook Award, the Golden Leaf award, the PRISM award, and the HOLT Medallion Award of Merit. She is a frequent panelist at national writing conferences and a frequent instructor of craft and social media workshops. Laura lives just outside the nationâs capital with her husband and two young daughters.
Find Laura Here
STEPHANIE DRAY is a bestselling and award-nominated author of historical womenâs fiction. Her series about Cleopatraâs daughter has been translated into six different languages, was nominated for a RITA Award and won the Golden Leaf. As STEPHANIE DRAVEN, she is a national bestselling author of paranormal romance, contemporary romance, and American-set historical womenâs fiction. She is a frequent panelist and presenter at national writing conventions and lives near the nationâs capital. Before she became a novelist, she was a lawyer, a game designer, and a teacher. Now she uses the stories of women in history to inspire the young women of today.
Find Stephanie Here