Welcome to the book blitz for MIDNIGHT, a stand-alone adult contemporary LGBTQ+ romance, by J.V. Speyer. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis Brandon loved Adrian, so when Adrian abruptly moved out of their apartment Brandon was devastated. Six weeks later Brandon is ready to start to ease his way back into life again, but a chance encounter leaves him questioning everything he thought he knew – about Adrian, their relationship, and himself.
His friends are there to see him through it, especially his best friend Greg. Greg wants what’s best for Brandon. He’s always wanted what’s best for Brandon, even when it’s not necessarily what’s best for Greg.
As Adrian’s true nature is revealed, Greg starts to wonder if maybe what’s best for both of them wouldn’t be each other.
Excerpt Brandon sat down on one of the chairs. “Yeah. I mean I know he had to hide. I knew that going in. A lot of guys had to do that. Most of them figure it out. And I’m not mad at him or anything. I just want to move on.” He frowned. ”What are you trying to get at here, Greg? Why does Adrian have anything to do with tonight’s party?”
Greg inclined his head down, toward the spot on the street that he hadn’t been able to tear his eyes from. “Because he’s been here this whole time.”
Brandon choked on his gin and tonic. “What?”
“He’s been sitting outside the condo, watching the building, this whole time. I mean, I get it.”
“I don’t!” Brendon declared, standing up again. He clutched his drink in his hand and couldn’t decide if he wanted to hurl it at the ex standing on the ground or if he wanted to go inside and hide. Throwing the glass would be wrong. It would be irresponsible; it would get people hurt. He didn’t want to hurt Adrian, even if this latest stunt was creepy and stalker-ish. “He’s the one who walked away. Why is he hanging around outside my building like some kind of lonely ghost?”
“He wanted your attention. He didn’t know how to get it, and his ploy backfired spectacularly. I think he regrets what he did.” Greg sighed. “I’ve been watching him all night, trying to figure out what to do. I was thinking about bringing him in.”
Brandon spun, bringing himself face to face with his best friend. “Why would you do that?”
“Because you love him, Bran!”
“So what? I’m moving on, trying to rebuild my life. Something you have not been shy about encouraging, I’ll point out. And you want to just… what, drag him back in here? What could that possibly accomplish?” He pulled at his hair.
“I thought it might give you guys a second chance.” Now it was Greg’s turn to sit down, flopping into one of the other patio chairs like it was the only thing holding him up. “I want to see you happy, Bran. I keep hopping this fence – I know you weren’t with the people who made you happy, but you seemed so perfect for each other. And I desperately want you to be happy.” He sighed heavily, gesturing back in Adrian’s general direction. “But I didn’t do it. The guy’s in his thirties. If he wanted to come up he could ring the doorbell like an adult.”
Brandon shook his head and rubbed Greg’s shoulders. “I knew I could trust you.” Greg leaned into the touch, just a little bit, and Brandon grinned. “I thought we established that Adrian can’t make me happy at this point. We’re not right for each other, even if we thought we were.”
“I know. I just don’t know what to do here.” He leaned back. “I mean, this is kind of creepy. He’s just out there, watching. If I’m not going to invite him inside, I probably ought to call the cops.”
Technically, Greg was right. Brandon probably ought to call the police, because no good ever came from one ex staking out the other’s home like this. “Do you think he’s dangerous?” Brandon hedged. “Seriously, has he said anything that’s struck you as dangerous?”
“Other than creepily hanging around outside your house? Nah. Not that he’d say anything to me, you know?” Greg snorted. “I’m pretty much the last person he’s talking to right now, except maybe you.”
“What do you mean?” Brandon’s arms froze on his friend’s shoulders.
“He’s all pissy because I lit into him about stalking you through the rally.” Greg waved a calloused hand in dismissal. “Like okay, fine, he wants to be with someone new. Okay. And so what if the guy’s an undergrad – it’s a little weird, he’s a little young for a midlife crisis but who am I to judge? But that whole thing – like anyone didn’t know what he was up to.” He shook his head again, and Brandon could feel his shoulders tensing up again underneath his hands. “I wasn’t going to just sit there and not say anything.”
Brandon let his hands fall. “Oh, Greg. I’m so sorry.”
“What the hell for?”
“I never wanted to come between the two of you. You’re friends. You should be doing friend things, not arguing over me.” He turned away, clutching at his drink so he could do something with his hands.
Author J.V. Speyer
About the Author J. V. Speyer has lived in upstate New York and rural Catalonia before making the greater Boston, Massachusetts area her permanent home. She has worked in archaeology, security, accountancy, finance, and non-profit management. She currently lives just south of Boston in a house old enough to remember when her town was a tavern community with a farming problem.
J. V. finds most of her inspiration from music. Her tastes run the gamut from traditional to industrial and back again. When not writing she can usually be found enjoying a baseball game or avoiding direct sunlight. She’s learning to crochet so she can make blankets to fortify herself against the cold.
Welcome to the book blitz for ACCEPTING AERIN, the second book in the adult contemporary romance series, Beckley’s Daughters Romance, by Tinsley Sellers. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway. For a limited time, you can pick up the ebook for just $0.99.
ACCEPTING AERIN (Beckley’s Daughters Romance #2) by Tinsley Sellers
Synopsis Former Chicago Cubs third baseman Chet Coakley needs a quiet place to write the last novel in his best-selling series.
When a freak accident ends his baseball career, Chet finds his second chance writing a series of retro-detective novels. He’s on a deadline and can’t afford a distraction—especially not in the form of a vivacious blonde innkeeper who challenges everything he believes about himself.
Professional chef Aerin Buckholtz owns a vintage lodge and fifteen cabins on a secluded lake in the Michigan woods.
Betrayed by her best friend and self-conscious about her appearance, Aerin believes that romance isn’t meant for her. She’s building her business—and working to earn good reviews seems safer than admitting her attraction to a handsome former athlete who feels far out of her league.
Can Aerin and Chet learn to see themselves through each other’s eyes and accept a love neither one saw coming?
Welcome back to Beckley, Michigan! Autumn is in the air and as the days get shorter, the air gets cooler and the trees begin to turn every shade of gold and red. The people are just as warm, friendly, smart, funny, and real as you remember. When you need a place to call home, Beckley welcomes you—and sometimes the family you choose is as strong as the bonds you’re born with.
If you like small-town romance, you’ll like Beckley. If you like smart heroines who balance demanding professional careers with a commitment to family, friends, and finding love, then you’ll definitely like it here. If you like strong, sexy, hard-working heroes who have not-so-secret soft spots for kids, kittens, and classic cars, you may find that you never want to leave!
Accepting Aerin is the second in the Beckley’s Daughters Romance series. This series is recommended for adult readers and contains explicit language and intimate situations.
Excerpt #1 Aerin. Nichelle had given me that much information, at least. Well, that and the part about owning the lodge and being the cousin of the best man, an enormous mountain of beard and muscle ridiculously named ‘Buck.’ However, the best way to gather information is always from the primary source. Unfortunately, the midnight-dressed, violet-eyed primary source was nowhere to be seen.
The music started, and the bridal couple took to the floor, dancing romantically close and whispering in each other’s ears. Nichelle left me and returned to the head table, where she leaned into a close conversation with the ginger-bearded best man. I strolled to the bar, scanning the room in vain. Optimistically, I asked the bartender for two glasses of champagne. I wanted a second chance to make a first impression.
Strolling the perimeter of the room, I scanned the crowd and failed to find her. Finally back to my original table, I noticed the lights. Along the lakeshore, one by one, lanterns flickered to life. I quickly found the door and followed my hunch. She was there on the beach and even more beautiful, barefoot and bathed in candle glow.
Smiling, I offered her the champagne flute. Three or four wise-guy one-liners flitted through my thoughts before I opted to go with the simple truth. “I was looking for you.”
Even in the diminished light, I could see her cheeks flush. She looked away, sipped nervously.
“Thank you,” she whispered. “For the wine.”
“No, thank you. For letting me crash your perfectly planned and expertly executed wedding dinner. That was a spectacular meal.”
Her eyes lit up with the compliment, so I gave her another. “You know, you’re very beautiful.”
Wrong, wrong, wrong. Her sapphire eyes flashed then narrowed slightly, and her lips pressed together.
“Excuse me,” she said, a slight edge in her voice. “I need to finish lighting these.”
She struck another match with a scratch-hiss-flare and a whiff of sulfur. Walking away, she carefully lit the remaining lanterns. What had I done? I wasn’t sure, but her guard was up. When you tell a woman she’s gorgeous and she runs the other way…I hurried to catch up and apologize.
“I said the wrong thing, didn’t I? Aerin, I’m sorry. I was out of line.”
“Not to be blunt, but who are you?” She waved the long match and the flame died, a thin stream of smoke wafting skyward. She pointed the burnt end at me. “You know my name, and I have no idea who you are or why you’re even here!”
I raised my hands slowly, taking a step backwards. There was an undercurrent of genuine fear in her voice, and I definitely didn’t want to frighten her.
“Sorry,” I apologized again, gently removing the charred stick from her fingers. “You could put somebody’s eye out with that, you know,” I chided in a humorous voice. There it was. A tentative smile.
“I’m Chet Coakley, and Nichelle and I have been friends forever. She’s been trying to get me up here for months, but she had no idea I was coming tonight, and I had no idea that I’d be crashing a wedding.”
“You’re…” she swallowed, her eyes uncertain. “Chet Coakley? As in Chet Coakley?”
“Chet Coakley,” she continued weakly, “As in Clubhouse Confidential? That Chet Coakley?”
“Christopher Ethan to my mother,” I nodded again with a grin, “but yeah, ‘Chet’ to my friends.”
“Oh my god!” she exclaimed. Then her brow furrowed and her plump lips pursed. She grabbed the 6-inch spent match from my grasp, poking me in the chest with it to punctuate her words. In her bare feet, the top of her head didn’t quite reach my shoulder.
I laughed out loud. So she did know who I was. Chet Coakley was my real name, but it was also my pen name and the name of my chief protagonist. The Clubhouse Confidential series of retro detective novels was my very small claim to fame. ‘Chet Coakley’ the character was a washed-out baseball-player-turned-clubhouse-manager for the Cubs who kept accidentally stumbling into mysteries while keeping his players in line. The series took place in 1950s Chicago, and ‘Chet’ was always falling for sultry brunettes who turned out to be bad news. He never learned.
Chet the author (me) was a washed-out baseball-player-turned-novelist who had turned a bad break (literally) into a fairly sustainable franchise. I wasn’t always falling for sultry brunettes, but there was definitely an aspect of art imitating life. My first sultry brunette was long gone from my life—and married to another man. I had tried to erase the bitter taste with a second, even sultrier brunette. She was smart enough not to want me on the rebound, and we had parted ways after only a few months.
The first ClubhouseConfidential novel had sold well enough to be optioned by a respectable film director, but in casting it had morphed into a vanity project for an aging Hollywood pretty-boy. When it bombed at the box office, the actor blamed the script. The screenwriter, in turn, blamed the source material. As a result, the last two books in the series hadn’t sold nearly as well as the first three.
And that’s why I was here, at the Starbrite Lodge in remote Beckley, Michigan crashing a stranger’s wedding on the evening of the autumn equinox. I needed a break from Chicago. I needed a break from my agent and my editor, and I flat-out fired my publicist (that she was my sister didn’t make it any easier). I had one book left on my contract, and I wanted ‘Clubhouse’ Chet’s sixth and last adventure to be his very best. But I was working with a deadline; the finished manuscript had to be on my editor’s desk by December first.
“So do you really have four older sisters? Or is that just ‘Clubhouse’ Chet?” Aerin derailed my train of thought.
“Oh yeah, absolutely. ‘Real’ Chet couldn’t possibly make that stuff up. ‘Clubhouse’ Chet’s sisters are about as real as I can make them without getting sued by my own family.”
She sighed wistfully. “It must be nice to have a big family. Is it fun to have a houseful of siblings?”
I shrugged, “It’s all I know. I was 18 and away at college before I was ever anybody other than so-and-so’s baby brother. Turns out I actually missed it.”
A cool breeze blew off the lake, and Aerin shivered in her sleeveless dress. I wasn’t wearing a suit because I hadn’t anticipated a wedding; I had no jacket to drape across her bare shoulders. I contemplated putting an arm around her but before I could make a move, she had already marched halfway back to the reception. Neither of us remembered the black satin heels in the sand.
About the Author Tinsley Sellers grew up in Chicago, spending her summers with her grandparents in a tiny town a lot like Beckley, Michigan. Life took her to Arizona, Washington, and Idaho before she finally found her home in Arkansas. She is married to an amazing, supportive (and handsome!) man, with whom she has rescued three dogs and two cats. When she’s not writing, she teaches physics and engineering at the local university. When she’s not writing or teaching, she’s probably trying new recipes. She enjoys fast cars, loud music, fine whisky, and big books. In no particular order.
Welcome to the book Blitz for THE YEAR I LEFT, a stand-alone adult contemporary romance, by Christine Brae. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis “A thousand half loves must be forsaken to take one whole heart home.”
Carin Frost doesn’t understand what’s happening to her. A confident businesswoman, wife, and mother, she begins to resent everything about her life. Nothing makes sense. Nothing makes her feel. Maybe it’s the recent loss of her mother in a tragic accident. Or maybe she’s just losing her mind.
Enter Matias Torres. As their new business partnership thrives, so does their friendship—and his interest in her. Carin is determined to keep her distance, until a work assignment sends them to Southeast Asia where a storm is brewing on the island. In the midst of the chaos, Matias asks her to do something unimaginable, exhilarating, BOLD. Carin knows the consequences could be dire, but it may be the only way to save herself.
An honest look at love and marriage and the frailties of the human heart, this is a story of a woman’s loss of self and purpose and the journey she takes to find her way back.
Excerpt #1 Sometime in the late summer when the air began to tingle and the leaves started to fall, I opened my eyes one morning and my view of the world had changed.
Just like that. I can still see it in my head. The way I let it all unfold. It was a train wreck waiting to happen, and I let it.
I left for a business trip that morning with my house in total disarray. I had no good reason for refusing to take Charlie to his school bus, and despite having some time to change our dog’s water bowl, I chose not to do it. There it lay, next to the unwashed food dish, crusted with the remains of last night’s dinner. I figured Jack would get home from the gym and handle it all.
Piles of paper gathering dust on the floor and debit card receipts busting out of a little white box screamed for my attention. I ignored them. My home office, the place where I used to hide all day, was like a war zone.
And it wasn’t like we had money issues. Paying our bills was the least of my worries. Jack had made a killing when his startup was bought out, and I was the head of client services at a global real-estate company.
I just stopped giving a damn. Nothing interested me. I was beset by indifference. I just couldn’t keep up anymore. The sleepless nights, the exhaustion, the constant streaming in my head. Everything seemed so insignificant, so mundane. My successes, my accomplishments, they had lost all meaning.
Author Christine Brae
About the Author Christine Brae is a full time career woman who thought she could write a book about her life and then run away as far as possible from it. She never imagined that her words would touch the hearts of so many women with the same story to tell. Her second book, His Wounded Light was released in December, 2013.
Christine’s third book, Insipid, is a standalone that was released in June, 2014, and her fourth book, In This Life, released in January 2016.
When not listening to the voices in her head or spending late nights at the office, Christine can be seen shopping for shoes and purses, running a half marathon or spending time with her husband and three children in Chicago.
Christine is represented by Italia Gandolfo of Gandolfo Helin Literary Management..
Welcome to the book blitz for HEALING HEATHER, the first book in the adult contemporary romance series, Beckley’s Daughters Romance, by Tinsley Sellers. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway. For a limited time, you can pick up the ebook for just $0.99.
HEALING HEATHER (Beckley’s Daughters Romance #1) by Tinsley Sellers
Synopsis She’s going 120mph in a 65 zone—and if driving even faster could change history, Professor Heather Harris would floor it. She’s on a collision course with Sergeant Brian Daniels, a state trooper determined to enforce the speed limit and slam the brakes on his own heartache. Can a fast-moving physicist find love with a laid-back law officer, or will ghosts from their pasts keep driving them apart?
“All relationships come with an expiration date. All of mine just happened to fall on the same two days.” —Heather Harris
After a long year of tragedy and loss, Dr. Heather Harris is finally ready to come to terms with the deaths that have left her devastated and alone in the world. Spending summer break at the lake cottage she inherited from her grandparents is the first step in coping with her crushing grief, but she soon finds herself on a collision course with Sergeant Brian Daniels, a police officer whose passion for classic cars won’t stop him from enforcing the speed limit.
Brian Daniels embraces his small-town, laid-back, lakeside life. After years of heartbreak at the hands of his first love, he’s finally free—and a fast-driving, karaoke-singing physics professor offers an exciting diversion. Opposites attract, but the sudden appearance of a blonde on a Harley threatens to throw a monkey wrench in the works. Will the pull of his past be stronger than the promise of his future?
Welcome to the small-town world of Beckley, Michigan. The two-lane roads are long and winding, the many lakes are cool and blue, and the dense forests are green and shaded. Summer days are warm and sunny and summer nights are clear under the glittering stars. The people are warm, friendly, smart, funny–and very, very real. When you need a place to call home, Beckley welcomes you—and sometimes the family you choose is as strong as the bonds you’re born with.
Excerpt #2 As I emerged from the ice cream parlor with my enormous probably-better-than-sex sundae, the first thing I saw was a fully-restored classic pick up. Parked directly in front of Johnson’s, right next to Violet, it was a Dodge, 1951 or ’52, five-window. From the pristine condition of the Sea Mist Green paint to the spotless whitewall tires, I surmised that it still had the original straight-line 6-cylinder engine and three-speed transmission. Brian stepped wordlessly aside while I handed him my sundae and circled the truck, utterly transfixed. I may have been drooling just a little. Clicking the latch, I lifted the driver’s side bonnet—and gasped out loud.
“Yeah,” he nodded over my shoulder, “it’s a 392 Hemi. Just like yours.” He grinned and started spooning my sundae into his mouth. “I bought her about eight years ago, and it took me six years to bring her back to life. I figured she deserved the Hemi.”
He scooped another generous spoonful of my ice cream into his mouth and savored. “Dang, did Lizzie make this? Just gets better every time.” He handed me back the paper bowl and closed the truck bonnet. “Wanna go for a ride?”
Did I ever. Girl Code or Common Sense 101 be damned, there was no way I was turning down a ride in that beauty-on-the-outside, beast-on-the-inside truck. Without a word, I climbed into the cab on the passenger side. The interior had been meticulously restored, and the tan leather bench seat had been customized with intricate stitching.
He roared the engine to life, and my heart skipped a beat. In seconds, he had turned off the main highway, and we headed east an empty two-lane, windows rolled down and radio turned up.
“So, if I remember correctly, this is the part of the country song where I kick my shoes off and put my pretty bare feet on the dash.” I smiled sweetly and licked the caramel from my spoon, a little more suggestively than was strictly necessary. Something about the rolled-up sleeves and half-unbuttoned casual shirt he wore over a plain white tee spoke to me on an almost cellular level, triggering a sensual response I couldn’t really control. I took another bite, swirling my tongue through whipped cream with an exaggerated innocence.
“Followed by the verse where I kick you out of my truck for spilling ice cream all over the leather,” he looked meaningfully at the paper bowl and its rapidly melting contents. The molten caramel and the summer heat had conspired, almost liquefying the butter pecan.
“Sorry,” I said meekly, sitting up straighter and corralling my wayward thoughts. “I won’t spill, I promise. But you may have to help me finish this, it’s a double.”
“Now that’s an offer I can’t refuse.” He kept his left hand on the wheel, and while I held the bowl, tried unsuccessfully with his right to secure a spoonful. “I’m a lefty. Help me out here?”
I slid over a bit closer and held the sundae-loaded spoon to his lips. Without taking his eyes from the road, he took the bite with obvious relish. I repeated the process, then helped myself to a spoonful. Sharing the single spoon felt intimate and little romantic.
About the Author Tinsley Sellers grew up in Chicago, spending her summers with her grandparents in a tiny town a lot like Beckley, Michigan. Life took her to Arizona, Washington, and Idaho before she finally found her home in Arkansas. She is married to an amazing, supportive (and handsome!) man, with whom she has rescued three dogs and two cats. When she’s not writing, she teaches physics and engineering at the local university. When she’s not writing or teaching, she’s probably trying new recipes. She enjoys fast cars, loud music, fine whisky, and big books. In no particular order.
Welcome to the release blitz for CALL HER MINE, the first book in the adult contemporary romance series, Harmony Pointe, by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Melissa Foster. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
CALL HER MINE (Harmony Pointe #1) by Melissa Foster
Synopsis Fall in love in Harmony Pointe, where hearts are lost, found, and sometimes misplaced…and everyone get a happy ever after.
If a woman can’t find love in the quaint town of Harmony Pointe, it’s sure to find them—whether they’re looking for it or not. Here, the remaining single Dalton siblings are about to discover that they’re next in line to get swept away by love. A sweet and sexy spin-off of Melissa’s beloved Sugar Lake series.
Ben Dalton has always been honest, except where his heart is concerned. He’s been in love with his best friend—saucy, smart-mouthed Aurelia Stark—forever. But Ben’s a planner, and timing has never been on his side. When he finally decides to make his move, Aurelia beats him to the punch with a move of her own—to a different town.
Aurelia loves her new life in the charming town of Harmony Pointe. She has a great apartment and her very own bookstore, and best of all, the sinfully hot, commitment-phobic friend she’s crushed on for years is no longer just around the corner. Maybe she’ll finally be able to leave her unrequited love behind and move on.
But when a baby is left on Ben’s front porch—a baby that is presumably his—Aurelia is there for him. Neither one knows the first thing about babies, but how hard can it be? Ben and Aurelia are catapulted into a world of love, laughter, and tracking down the baby mama, and it might even add up to a very happily ever after . . . just not one either of them expects.
Excerpt AURELIA LOOKED LONGINGLY at the muscular arm circling her waist and the large hand cupping her breast over her shirt and promptly closed her eyes, chastising herself for doing it again. Always a bridesmaid, never a bride was beginning to ring too true, and it was all Ben Dalton’s fault. She’d had a ridiculous crush on her Henry Cavill–lookalike best friend for far too long, and it was getting in the way of her life, her thoughts, hereverything. Every time she went out with a guy, she compared him to Ben, who looked rugged and yummy in jeans that hugged his thick thighs and perfect ass and could rock a suit like he’d strutted off a runway. But it wasn’t just his looks. She quickly bored of every date, waiting for them to be quippy, fun, and unknowingly seductive like Ben. If she wasn’t careful, she’d end up the spinster of Sweetwater, New York. Harmony Pointe, she corrected herself. Though she’d grown up in Sweetwater and had moved back to reopen her grandmother’s bookstore and combine it with the Ben’s sister Willow’s bakery, Sweetie Pies, Aurelia had recently changed directions. In an effort to stop waking up in Friendsville, she’d bought an adorable bookstore with an apartment above it on the corner of Main Street and West Avenue in the next town over, Harmony Pointe.
She allowed herself another minute to enjoy the feel of Ben’s broad chest against her back, his titillating breath warming her neck, and yes, even his morning wood pressing into her bottom. The situation would be sexier if the man child wrapped around her wasn’t also drooling on her shirt.
That was about all the action she’d ever see from him.
She’d spent the last month swearing she was done doing this with him. But when he’d called her last night and said, “Come on, Rels, hang out with me. I miss you,” that’s all it had taken. The way he said Rels always made her stupid heart melt. She’d been called Aurelia since the day she was born—the day her mother had died—by everyone except by Ben. He had coined the nickname Rels—or Relsy if he was in a particularly sweet mood—and he only seemed to use it when they were alone. It was ridiculous that a secret nickname could made her feel special, but it did. She knew she was important to him. She was the first person he called to share any kind of news, and they were known in their circle of friends as Ben and Aurelia—always linked, like Ben and Jerry. Two people who seemed to exist as one perfect combination.
Except she didn’t want to be Ben and Jerry.
She wanted to be the perfect combination of man and woman, like Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively. The type of couple who had wild, crazy sex and woke up naked, tangled in each other’s sticky body parts, not clothed on a chaise lounge in the middle of Benjamin Unable-to-Commit Dalton’s couch with drool on their shoulders.
Author Melissa Foster
About the Author Melissa Foster is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author. She writes sexy and heartwarming contemporary romance, new adult romance and women’s fiction with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page. Readers adore Melissa’s fun, flirty, and sinfully sexy, award-winning big family romance collection, LOVE IN BLOOM featuring the Snow Sisters, Bradens, Remingtons, Ryders, Seaside Summer, Harborside Nights, and the Wild Boys After Dark. Melissa’s emotional journeys are lovingly erotic and always family oriented.
Melissa also writes sweet and clean romance under the pen name Addison Cole.
Melissa has painted and donated several murals to The Hospital for Sick Children in Washington, DC. Her interests include her family, reading, writing, painting, friends, helping others see the positive side of life, and visiting Cape Cod.
Melissa is available to chat with book clubs and welcomes comments and emails from her readers. Visit Melissa on social media or her personal website.
Never miss a brand new release, special promotions or inside gossip again by simply signing up to receive your newsletter from Melissa.
Welcome to the book blitz for THE MINIMALIST BABE:: Tidying-Up Your Whole Life, a self-help book by Lola R. Marie, releasing September7, 2019. See below for information on the book, preorder links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
THE MINIMALIST BABE:: Tidying-Up Your Whole Life by Lola R.Marie
About the Book
Title: THE MINIMALIST BABE:: Tidying-Up Your Whole Life Author: Lola R. Marie Publisher: VisualBee Publishing Release Date: September 7, 2019 Genre: Adult Self-Help Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis Lola is every bit the minimalist babe – she lives simply, is intelligent and sassy, emotional and strong, calm and composed. Realizing that less is more, she traded in material possessions to focus on what was truly important to her. Lola’s inspiring guide delivers real-world advice on how to consume less, clear out clutter, find authenticity, and live a life based on freedom. It is a sincere attempt to help those who want to end their obsession with stuff.
Echoing the thoughts behind Leonardo da Vinci’s quote that “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication,” this book teaches you how to value the simple things. From learning to declutter and live with less to living life with passion, good health, and great relationships. The Minimalist Babe is for anyone who desires a more intentional life. Drawing from real-life experiences, it is filled with stories that will teach you step-by-step how to be:
Authentic, self-assured, calm and composed, mindful, minimal and self-sufficient, financially stable, purposeful, free, healthy and happy.
Excerpt #3 Difficult yes, but not impossible
If you want to overcome destructive habits, you have to find ways to create life-changing neural pathways that override the existing unfavorable ones you’ve seeded and matured over years of practice. Now that you know how your brain works in acting out habits and how you’ve single-handedly trained it to be the way it is, you should know that its transformation is also in your control. Instead of thinking that something is wrong with you or that you will always be stuck with a nagging habit, think of what you can do to undo the habit. Think of how you can re-write the negative neural pathways with positive ones.
They all add up
We live in a society that’s quick to judge and brand. What’s worse is that they are equally quick to sell their assumptions to others. It’s good dinner-time conversation, you see. You either fit in and get included or rebel and get ignored and nobody wants that. Most people need attention and acceptance and need others to make them feel worthy.
Society is the product of our inbred need to be with others of our own species. In essence, it reinforces our need to be with others like ourselves. We are exposed to ads that tell us what we need to be healthy, good looking, successful, and happy. We are given formulas that promise to fix just about anything instantly. As we seek to satisfy our need for acceptance and while in pursuit of things that society tells us we need (and the number of these things only grows), some people become hoarders by habit.
Justifying lack of control by giving it sentimental value
In essence, our possessions can symbolize our hopes and dreams. They can represent the world that we want to fit into. They can personify what we want others to think of us as. However misguided it might be, looking at these things can bring back memories and reinstate the reasons you bought them, and fill a void that came from a lack of security, status, comfort, love, and worth. With that much sentiment riding on these things, it comes as no surprise that it can be difficult to let them go.
They tell our story
People hold onto things because they attach them with memories and/or hope, says June Saruwatari, author of Behind the Clutter11, a thought-provoking book that entails not just the physical things that occupy our space but also the mental clutter that keeps us from living in the present and being happy. She explains how we buy things in the hope of accomplishing something that’s been left undone for a long time. As long as the thing stays, our hope to complete the undone remains, and due to that hope of fulfilling the task someday and fear of missing out, we refuse to let it go.
We hope to lose weight and therefore buy a treadmill. We hope to catch up on reading and therefore borrow fifteen of the most loved books from the library. We hope… and therefore we… Somehow that’s always the narrative. We validate our excuses by attaching it to hope and that one feeling alone is enough to keep you going.
We hold onto things because we fear not valuing it otherwise
Some people refuse to let go because of the monetary value they attach to something. For instance, you’ve bought something that was highly priced and know you’ll lose out on money if you resell it or give it away. You therefore hold onto it so as to justify the monetary loss you might have to suffer otherwise. Sometimes, because the item isn’t really worth anything any longer, you’re faced with the option of keeping it (although it is not worth anything) versus cutting your losses. Other times, the thought of losing out on money and of not valuing things might trigger memories from the past, such as a time when you might not have had enough. You, therefore, hold onto things because you believe you’ve learned from your experiences and don’t want to go down that path again.
It’s a vicious cycle borne out of fear, and that manifests into a compulsive and self-destructive habit
The need to experience the feelings mentioned above can cause us to cling onto more and more, in time compounding into the reactive burden of living amidst all the memories and physical baggage associated with these things.
Until you realize you have had enough and want to reform. Because you can…
Ask yourself why you can’t part with your things. Let’s face it; there might only be a handful of people who are ready to drop their possessions overnight and they may not be the ones reading this book. Decluttering is a positive response that is acquired over deliberate introspection and action. Fortunately, you don’t have to rush into things. Take your time and, when you are ready, focus on each item you have trouble parting with and ask yourself why. Dig deep and stay open. You might be surprised by the not so obvious answers.
Memorabilia are different from memories
So often, we hold onto physical belongings because they help us recollect a certain memory. You hold onto your first paycheck because it reminds you of a certain time. You hold onto your baby’s first car seat because it reminds you of the day you got him/her home…
However, there isn’t any relationship between our past and the records we hold onto in view of recollecting that past. You are quite capable of remembering any memory from the past, and if you happen to forget a certain memory, it probably was something that was okay to forget. It’s okay to move on.
In essence, it’s the memories that we can recall without the aid of physical possessions that are important. The rest amounts to frills and extra possessions. As for photos, I recommend you go digital. You’ll be saving up on space and can still look at them when you want.
Let go of the idea of getting your money’s worth
Nobody likes to lose out on hard-earned money, and so in view of getting our money’s worth, we hold onto things even when they become irrelevant to our situations. For instance, you hold onto the bike that you hardly ride and let it collect dust because you aren’t getting your money’s worth. Well the truth is that you most likely won’t, but it’s okay to drop your expectations just a bit. Get real and make the sale when you think you’ve got a good enough deal.
Minimizing is difficult, but not impossible
I believe that cluttering is not just the physical manifestation of your impulses. It digs deeper and into emotions that are stopping you from realizing yourself. Decluttering the physical things can actually help you unravel layers of unaddressed and suppressed emotions. When that happens, you’ll realize your true self and will begin to live your best life.
Points to remember
Clutter causes stress and anxiety. Stop subscribing to it.
Your brain is conditioned to act out your habits- so cultivate the right routines.
Memorabilia is not the same as memories. Take pictures, but it’s better to go digital.
Let go of the idea of getting your money’s worth.
Name three things you possess that you have been conditioned to hold on to. Now let go of two of those items.
Author Lola R.Marie
About the Authors Hi All!
I love to write, bathe in sunrays and ponder the mysteries of life. Follow me as I write my way to a better live.
Today is release day for RULES OF A REBOUND, the second book in the adult contemporary romance series, Breakup Bash, by Nina Crespo. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
RULES OF A REBOUND (Breakup Bash #2) by Nina Crespo
Natalie Winters thought she’d married the man of her dreams…but her marriage ended way too soon in a nightmarish divorce. She even has to share custody of the dog! The stress is killing her, so she decides to take a night off and attend the Breakup Bash—a private party for women celebrating their breakups—with her friends.
Former executive security specialist turned bartender Rome Collier is drawn to the woman easily trading sexy banter with him. And if she wants the “Do Me” condoms she accidentally throws across the counter at him, she’ll have to claim them…personally. Their flirtation turns into so much more, and every scintillating night they spend together is better than the last.
Strong, protective…and hot, Rome is everything Natalie ever wanted in a man. All she has to do is convince him he’s more than a rebound.
Excerpt Breathe, Collier, justbreathe… He forced himself to take in a steady stream of air through his nose then slowly released it from his mouth. If he focused hard enough on his breathing, his mind would absorb the pain. A few breaths later, sweat formed on his spine, and once again, he was white-knuckling the back counter. Fuck. The damn pills weren’t kicking in fast enough. He needed a distraction.
“Excuse me, bartender.” The woman’s sultry voice coming from behind Rome teased him from the brink of hell. “I’ll take an orgasm.”
He’d filled countless orders for sex on the beaches, blow jobs, and wet pussies, but overly coy deliveries or too much effort had ruined the effect. From her naturally sensual tone, this woman had confidence lying on its back begging to please her.
He glanced over his shoulder.
Auburn highlights shown in the woman’s shoulder-length black hair. Long lashes accented her brown eyes, and her full berry-colored lips were beyond tempting. A thin-strapped, red tank top complemented flawless brown skin.
Fuck confidence lying on its back. He’d gladly lay under one of her sexy stilettos for a closer look at her long shapely legs and equally enticing curves. At least, that’s what he envisioned the counter hid from his view.
Logan glanced over as if he was planning to take her order, prompting Rome to ignore the pain and walk to her at the counter. “Sure you don’t want champagne instead? It’s on the house.”
“No.” She tapped one of her red manicured nails against the Naughty Nine menu. “I’m definitely interested in a number five.” Her gaze met his. “I haven’t had a really good orgasm in years.”
Too bad she was only talking about the drink. Or was she? “So, it’s been hard to find someone to deliver what’s on the menu?”
“Yes. My ex-husband definitely failed that test.” For a moment, a flash of sadness intermingled with the spark of mischief in her eyes.
Her ex was clearly a dumb bastard or a fool. A woman as sexy as this one deserved at least one orgasm every damn day of the week. As he envisioned slipping the straps from her shoulders, revealing her voluptuous breasts and more of her silky-smooth skin, his groin tightened. If she was in his arms, he’d explore every inch of her on the way to delivering what she’d been unfairly denied.
Rome rested his hands on the bar and leaned in. Her perfume, feminine and sensual, lured him closer. “Are you sure you’re only in the mood for one?”
“I’d love more than one, but I don’t want to come off as…” Her long lashes raised as she looked up and gave him a ghost of a smile. “Greedy.”
As the last word purred from her lips, goosebumps raised on his arms. He welcomed the challenge of satisfying this beautiful woman.
Rome reached for a cocktail shaker and paused. Pouring liqueurs over ice and shaking it up was the half-ass way of doing it. She’d asked for a really good orgasm, and he’d give her one.
About the Author Nina Crespo lives in Florida where she indulges in her favorite passions — the beach, a good glass of wine, date night with her own real-life hero and dancing.
Her lifelong addiction to romance began in her teens while on a “borrowing spree” in her older sister’s bedroom where she discovered her first romance novel.
Let Nina’s sensual contemporary stories and steamy paranormal tales feed your own addiction for love, romance, and happily ever after.
***JOIN NINA’S READERS GROUP***
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Welcome to the blog tour for ONE YEAR HOME, the highly-anticipated sequel to the adult contemporary military romance, FIVE YEARS GONE, by New York Times bestselling author, Marie Force. See below for information on the book and series, buy inks, and an exclusive excerpt.
He came home a hero and lost the only woman he’s ever loved…
I have no idea how to survive without my beloved Ava. She had no choice but to move on with her life during my six-year deployment and has now married Eric. I hate him for taking her from me. I’d prefer to wallow in my depression and heartbreak, but the whole damned world wants a piece of the SEAL Team leader who helped capture the world’s most-wanted terrorist. I need help handling the relentless requests, and when Ava sends her new sister-in-law to manage the media circus for me, I’m prepared to hate her on principle. Her brother took my Ava. What else do I need to know about her?
It takes five seconds to realize Ava’s ex is going to be the most complicated and difficult client I’ve ever had, but the opportunity to represent the most celebrated man in the world could make my career. I’m determined to do the job, even if I dislike John from the moment I meet him. And I like everyone. So much so that my brothers worry about me being exploited by those who would take advantage of my unwavering love for others. But John… He’s in a class by himself, and his bitterness is a festering wound that I begin to wish I could somehow fix for him. The more time we spend together, the more our mutual disdain morphs into something that feels an awful lot like desire. There’s no way I can want this man, or so I tell myself, and when Eric finds out I’ve developed feelings for the man causing trouble in his new marriage, well…
That’s going to be a hot mess.
The hotly anticipated follow up to Five Years Gone is here!
Excerpt #1 Chapter 2
He’s so scary looking that it’s all I can do not to shrivel up in a ball or bolt for the door to get away from him. If I’d run into him on the street, I would’ve moved out of his way so there’d be no chance of coming into contact with him. And that’s not like me at all. I talk to everyone I encounter, which drives my brothers crazy. They swear I’m going to end up dead one of these days because I’m too friendly to strangers.
I can’t help it. That’s just how I am. But this stranger is different, and I quickly realize he’s not about to do anything to make this easier for me. He’s also incredibly handsome, but I barely notice that. The scary requires my full attention.
Muncie breaks the uncomfortable silence by clearing his throat. “Captain John West, meet Julianne Tilden.”
Mustering courage and determination to get through this with my professionalism intact even if I’m quaking on the inside, I take several steps forward and extend my hand. “It’s nice to meet you, Captain West. Thank you for your service.”
He shakes my hand and offers a brusque nod as he lowers himself carefully onto a love seat. “Have a seat.”
I take one of the straight-back chairs that faces the love seat.
Muncie produces a take-out cup of coffee, cream containers, sugar and fake sugar. “Wasn’t sure if you drank coffee or how you take it.”
He seems very sweet, and I offer him a warm smile, greatly relieved that he’s there in case the scary captain decides to go postal on me. “Thanks. I can’t function without it.”
“You and the captain have that in common,” Muncie says with a pointed look for John as if to say, Get your head out of your ass and be nice.
At least I hope that’s the message he’s sending, because it would be very nice if he would get his head out of his ass and be nice.
I stir cream and sugar substitute into my coffee. “What can I do for you, Captain West?” He’s not going to make it easy for me? I can play that game, too.
“Deal with the bullshit.”
“You’re going to need to be more specific, I’m afraid.” I take a sip of the coffee and thank God once again for whoever thought it would be a good idea to dump hot water over ground cocoa beans. Did they know at the time what a service they were doing for all of mankind?
“I’m getting killed with calls from the media. Everyone wants interviews. They want me to write a book. One company asked me to model underwear for them. It’s nonstop and totally insane, and I can’t deal with it.”
“How are they contacting you?”
“Somehow, they got my personal cell number.” As he says those words, a phone on the coffee table vibrates with an incoming call. “That’ll be the first of at least a hundred calls today.”
“Well, that won’t work. Do you mind if I take the phone and manage the calls for you?”
He hesitates, glancing at the phone with such yearning that I feel my heart soften toward him.
“I’ll get you a new one and make sure she has the new number,” Muncie says.
That’s all the captain needs to hear. “Take it. It’s all yours.”
I take the phone off the coffee table. “Does it have a code?”
“Zero five twenty-five.”
I write that down in the notebook that’s always with me. I sleep with it under my pillow. It has all the most important information about my clients in it. My siblings make fun of my notebook, but a lot of the details contained in there are ultrasensitive, and I’d never keep them on a smart phone that can easily be hacked. We had a seminar at work about that topic last year. It scared the crap out of me and everyone I work with. Quite a few of us have switched to paper and pen since then.
Captain John West is my only client at the moment. The powers that be at the firm were so excited to land him that they bent over backwards to get coverage for all my other clients so I can give the man of the moment my full attention. After ten minutes in his presence, I want to give him back.
But I won’t do that for two reasons. One, everyone who is anyone in my business would literally kill to be me right now, and two, Ava asked me to take care of him, so I will. I adore Ava. She’s made my brother Eric happier than he’s ever been, and there’s nothing I wouldn’t do for her. This is a big deal to her—John is a big deal to her. She was in love with the guy for eight years, more than six of them spent wondering where he was while hoping he would return to her.
By the time he did, she was in love with Eric and they were planning a life together. I know how hard it was for her to see John again after all that time. I can’t for the life of me imagine what it must’ve been like for him to hear she’d found someone else and was engaged to be married.
“Why are you staring at me?” he asks gruffly, startling me.
I realize, to my horror, that I had in fact been staring at him. “Sorry,” I mutter.
He rubs his face. “Did I cut myself shaving again, Muncie?”
“Not this time, sir.”
“I, um, I apologize. I didn’t mean to stare.”
“So you said.” He seems to return the rudeness by taking the opportunity to blatantly stare at me.
I try not to wither under the glare of the most intense blue eyes I’ve ever seen, but I wilt a tiny bit waiting to find out what fresh hell he has in store for me next. “You sure I didn’t cut myself shaving, Muncie?”
The lieutenant commander laughs. “Nope. All good.”
I glance at the captain and note that his scowl has softened somewhat, not into what anyone would call a smile, but perhaps the starting of one.
“Your brother married my Ava.”
And there it is, the proverbial elephant in the room. “Yes, he did.”
“What’s he like?”
Oh, for God’s sake. I hadn’t expected him to ask me that and have no idea what to say.
“Is that a hard question? I take it you’ve known him awhile.”
“All my life, in fact.”
He leans forward, full of intensity and quiet rage. That’s the only way I can think of to describe the vibe coming from him.
“Captain…” Muncie’s word of warning goes ignored.
“He’s… He’s a good guy, one of the best guys I know. He’d do anything for anyone, give you the shirt off his back.” I hate the cliché, but it does the job—and it’s true. In a crisis, Eric would be the first person I’d call.
“What does he do for a living?”
“What the hell are high-end investments?”
“Five million dollars or more.” At his look of distaste, I feel the need to say more. “He can spend a year fully investigating a potential investment, only to have the acquisition committee in his company turn it down. It’s very complex work.”
Judging by his expression, that doesn’t help with the distaste. “Sounds like a heck of a way to make a living.”
“He likes it.” I take a deep breath and tell myself to get control of this meeting. “Back to the media inquiries.”
“How old is he?”
“Did you ask me here to discuss my brother, Captain West, or are you interested in my professional services?” I force myself to look him dead in the eye and not to let him see that he intimidates me.
He stares back at me for a long moment before he blinks. “Both, I suppose.”
“I’m only interested in the professional inquiries, if it’s just the same to you. While I empathize with your situation, I love my brother, and it doesn’t feel right for me to be discussing him with you.”
He doesn’t like that, but too bad. I’m here to do a job, not defend my brother.
“You empathize with my situation? Really?”
“Captain…” The note of warning in Muncie’s tone isn’t lost on either of us.
“Yes, I do empathize with what you’ve been through, and like the rest of America, I’m deeply grateful for the role you played in bringing a terrorist to justice at great personal and physical expense.”
He begins to clap, slowly and dramatically.
Heat creeps into my face, which is infuriating. The last thing I want him to see is that he gets to me.
“Did you practice that little speech on the flight out here?”
“No.” I wish I could punch him and still have a job afterward. The partners were thrilled when I told him who my potential client was. Land him, they’d said, and we’ll consider you for junior partner. “I made it up right here.”
“Nice to see that you’re good on the fly.”
“I’m outstanding on the fly, which is how I became one of the top young PR professionals in New York.”
His cell phone rings, which is when I realize I’m gripping it tightly. With him watching me in that intense, intimidating way of his, I take the call. “Answering for Captain West.”
It’s a producer for NBC Nightly News, wanting to book an interview. “Let me take down your contact information and get back to you.” The name and number go in my trusty notebook.
“And you are?” the producer asks.
“Are you working for Captain West?”
“Please hold for one moment.” I put my hand over the phone so I won’t be overheard. “It’s an NBC News producer. She wants to know if I work for you.”
He holds my gaze for a long moment, during which I honestly have no idea what he’s thinking. He gives nothing away. “Tell her you do.”
I offer him a brief nod and return to the call. “I’ll be representing Captain West for media inquiries going forward. May I give you my number so you can reach me directly?” I recite the number for my work phone and tell her again I’ll be back in touch. I end the call and glance at my new client.
The first thing I do is slide my company’s retainer contract across the table. “Before we go any further, I need you to sign this.”
He leans forward to retrieve the document, and after studying it, he says, “Two hundred dollars an hour?”
“I assure you, I’ll earn every dime of it.”
“Yes, you will,” Muncie mutters.
I really like him.
“Who’s paying for this?” Captain West asks Muncie.
“We’ve got it covered. Sign the form.”
He signs it and hands it over to me. “Now what?”
“Now we need to talk about what you’re willing to do—and what you’re not willing to do.”
“If he had his druthers, he wouldn’t do anything,” Muncie says.
I never divert my gaze from the captain. “Why is that?”
“I don’t want to talk about it, but the navy has decided to make me their new poster boy for recruitment. I just want to retire and ride off into the sunset, but they’re not going to let that happen.”
“What’s the minimum that he can do?” I ask Muncie.
“They haven’t given us a minimum. They want him to take full advantage of the opportunities he’s being offered, whatever that means.”
I redirect my attention to the captain. “What’re your physical limitations?”
If looks could kill, I’d be a goner. “I have no physical limitations.”
“So you can travel?”
“Yes,” he says through gritted teeth.
“Here’s what I suggest… We book a New York media tour, including morning shows, nightly news, late night, and then we come back out here and do an LA leg.”
As soon as I say the word “leg,” I wish I could take it back. Not that the word is incorrect, but I don’t want him to think I’m fixated on what he’s lost. And why would he think that exactly? Shut up, Julianne. I hate that inner voice that constantly critiques me. It’s my mother’s voice. She made a career out of critiquing my every move until the blessed day I left for college at Barnard and could breathe for the first time in my life.
He doesn’t respond to my suggestion.
I clear my throat. “Would that work for you?”
I glance at Muncie, who shrugs as if to say damned if I know what his problem is. Great. He’s been dealing with him for months, and he has no clue. What chance do I have?
I open my notebook and uncover my favorite gel pen. “Let’s cover what you will and won’t talk about.”
“I won’t talk about the raid, the mission or anything to do with Al Khad.”
“That’s what they’re going to want to know.”
“Despite the fact that Al Khad’s camp released the video of the raid, the mission is still classified on our end. I’m not at liberty to discuss the particulars, and even if I was, I wouldn’t.”
“Can you talk about what it was like to be deployed for more than five years?”
“Yeah. It sucked.”
“You have to say more than that.”
“What else should I say?”
“What did you do for all that time?” The question is one that I’ve had since I first heard the story about him and how he’d deployed the day Al Khad’s organization had taken out a US-based cruise ship with suicide bombers, killing four thousand innocent people. My sister-in-law, Ava, who’d been John’s live-in girlfriend at the time, waited five years in San Diego for him to come back before returning home to New York to start over.
“We looked for Al Khad.”
“Where did you look for him?”
He thinks about that, seeming to decide what he should say. “Our search spanned several countries that’re hostile to Americans, so we had to embed and blend in with the locals to get information. That took time and patience, among other things.”
“When you joined the navy, did you know you might have to deploy for so long without any word to your loved ones at home?”
“Other than the girlfriend I wasn’t supposed to have, I didn’t have loved ones at home, which is why I was initially chosen for the unit. In an interview, I could only say that I didn’t have loved ones at home. I can’t say I had a girlfriend.”
“What does it matter now?” I ask. “Cat’s out of the bag.”
“It matters. I don’t want her dragged into this.”
“Yes, that’s true.” I respect that he’s protecting her, even now. “I agree that we’re better off not arousing curiosity about her. The press would be relentless in their efforts to locate and interview her.”
“Which would be inconvenient and disruptive to your brother.”
Infuriated all over again, I stare him down. “It would be inconvenient, disruptive and intrusive for Ava. I’m sure you’ll agree she’s already been through enough.”
Muncie makes a sound that might be laughter, but he quickly coughs to cover it up.
“I agree,” John says. “Ava’s been through enough, and that’s entirely my fault.”
My heart breaks a little for him, because even though he tries to hide it, the pain of losing her is as obvious as his blue eyes, prominent cheekbones and sexy lips.
God help me, but the man is sexy—and completely off-limits to me for so many reasons, it would take me days to list them all in my notebook.
About the Author Marie Force is the New York Times bestselling author of contemporary romance, including the indie-published Gansett Island Series and the Fatal Series from Harlequin Books. In addition, she is the author of the Butler, Vermont Series, the Green Mountain Series and the erotic romance Quantum Series. In 2019, her new historical Gilded series from Kensington Books will debut with Duchess By Deception.
All together, her books have sold 6.5 million copies worldwide, have been translated into more than a dozen languages and have appeared on the New York Times bestseller list many times. She is also a USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestseller, a Speigel bestseller in Germany, a frequent speaker and publishing workshop presenter as well as a publisher through her Jack’s House Publishing romance imprint. She is a two-time nominee for the Romance Writers of America’s RITA® award for romance fiction.
Her goals in life are simple—to finish raising two happy, healthy, productive young adults, to keep writing books for as long as she possibly can and to never be on a flight that makes the news..
Welcome to the blog tour for THEY’RE A MATCH, the third book in the adult romantic suspense series, Tough Love, by Chloe Liese. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
THEY’RE A MATCH (Tough Love #3) by Chloe Liese
About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited Title: THEY’RE A MATCH Series: Tough Love #3 Author: Chloe Liese Release Date: August 12, 2019 Genre: Adult Romantic Suspense Link: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis One blazing relational bond formed by two fiery lovers. And a new element just joined the formula.
Chemistry calls it covalence. Shakespeare named it the “marriage of true minds.” Historically speaking, Nairne never liked the impractical notion of marriage, and Zed never thought he’d live to see the day when tying the knot was even an option. After a decade of entanglement in the mafia, Zed’s now free to play the game he loves and love the woman who owns his heart.
Problem is, the spitfire’s been a loner her whole life. Independent, self-reliant, and driven. And she wants nothing to do with marriage, since statistically it fails more than it succeeds, which to her scientific mind is the universally acknowledged definition of an experimental bust. But the elemental pull toward matrimony between the sexy scientist and her dark and handsome soccer star is stronger than Nairne anticipates. Can she risk her heart for her perfect match, even if it’s a gamble rather than a sure bet?
In the game of life,
you win some, you lose some.
“And They Lived Happily Ever After” is theirs for the taking,
but for that pesky little word that so often gets overlooked…
Book Three in the Tough Love Series—a suspenseful romance, full of sexy Italians, feisty heroines, a house full of friends and family, and an ending that closes the chapter on these lovers, and paves the way for new ones.
Excerpt #2 Zed stood at the counter, chopping onions and dabbing his eyes with the back of his sleeve.
“Jesus Christ,” he said. “Where’d you get these? They’re killing me.”
I sat at the island across from him, segmenting oranges. “The market down the street. They seemed fresh.”
“No shit.” He laughed.
He finished the onion and slid it into the cast iron pan where it sizzled and popped in olive oil. He set the cutting board and knife in the sink, and I watched his muscles flex under his grey thermal. It fit him unfairly well, and it was all his fault, since the man was particular about his wardrobe. I’d never bought him a stitch of clothing. He blamed it on being Italian.
“You ever see an Italian man who looks like a slob? That’s right, because they don’t exist.”
I smirked to myself and felt a dull ache grow between my thighs as his round shoulders and arse flexed when he leaned for the soap.
“Like what you see, MacGregor?”
I scowled at his back. “You always know when I’m undressing you with my eyes.”
He peered over his shoulder and hit me with those pale tiger irises, along with a knowing smirk. “I don’t know it. I feel it.”
When he finished at the sink, he came over to me. His hands slipped around my waist until he got as close as my growing belly allowed.
“You know what I’m thinking about?” he asked.
I was a little preoccupied with how his hands had drifted down to fondle my arse. “Hmm?”
“Where were we this time last year?”
His childhood home in Beacon Hill. He’d left the dinner table abruptly after his father had heckled him about the life Zed had become entangled in, a world he’d felt no choice but to both enter and try to destroy. Problem was, it had been destroying Zed, too.
“I remember,” I whispered. “How you looked so forlorn. I watched the snow and felt like you were as desolate inside as the storm around us.”
He nodded. Kissed me tenderly. “I was.” His hands cupped my cheeks as he smiled. “But then a spitfire came along and blew it all to hell. Brought heat and light and demand. Made me look at my life and want so much more from it.”
Tears burned my eyes. Sometimes I forgot to look back and feel the immense gratitude I should for how far we’d come, what we’d both survived. The life we’d fought to share.
“Thank you, innamorata, for this life. For giving me your love. For giving me a baby. It’s all because of you.”
I clutched his shirt and pulled him to me, kissing him hard. “I didn’t do it alone. It’s always been the two of us, together.”
About the Author Chloe’s always been a sucker for a suspenseful steamy romance, ever since she managed to find the one saucy mystery series hiding in her high school’s prim little library. Nothing drives her crazier than a story that cranks up the heat, then closes the door on the reader’s face, so don’t read her books if you don’t want to know what actually happens when the lights fade to black…
When she’s not writing, Chloe’s busy reading books of all genres, rereading Harry Potter (which she can’t help but make her characters similarly obsessed over), and playing catch-up with her bad@$$ little girls. She’s also been known to scramble around the pitch for a pick-up soccer match and run along the river while dreaming up her next book.
Welcome to the blog Tour for PERFECT PITCH, the second book in the young adult paranormal romance series, The Chameleon Effect, by Alex Hayes. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
PERFECT PITCH (The Chameleon Effect #2) by Alex Hayes
About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited Title: PERFECT PITCH Series: The Chameleon Effect #2 Author: Alex Hayes Release Date: August 6, 2019
Genre: Young Adult/New Adult Paranormal Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis All Dean wants is to escape…
But he can’t leave his younger brother, Ty, in the care of their alcoholic mother. And when their abusive father shows up, Dean has to get Ty out. Which means joining Shri — his best and only friend — in taking a job out of state and breaking the law by stealing his brother away.
Cadi’s life is almost back together after Dean blew it into a million pieces. She’s come to terms with her life as a shape-shifter — well, almost. She’s still trying to wrap her head around the fact that a vicious enemy is out to destroy the remnants of her people.
As if Cadi doesn’t have enough to deal with, Dean’s about to land on her front doorstep, forcing her to decide whether to let him into her secret world or slam the door in his face.
The Chameleon Effect series, starring shape-shifter teens with extraordinary superpowers, is sure to appeal to Young Adult and New Adult readers who enjoy romance with a paranormal twist.
Excerpt #3 At three, I text Ty and get no answer. After fifteen minutes of silence, I head home.
Dad’s truck is gone, so I park my car in its place—my space—as if that will somehow keep him from coming back. I kill the engine.
Pepper’s continuous barking from over the backyard fence makes me stiffen. Why would Ty leave him outside making such a ruckus?
The answer is, he wouldn’t.
I jog to the front door, trying to convince myself nothing’s wrong. Ty’s wearing his earbuds, that’s all. Or he’s in the shower.
“Ty?” I shout as I burst through the door.
Still nothing. The parents must have taken him out to an early dinner is all, but I hurry to his bedroom door, anyway, heartbeat racing.
I knock. “Ty?”
A faint sob.
Shit! I thrust open the door and face total devastation.
Broken pieces of wood and wire lay scattered across the floor. The shattered remains of Ty’s guitar.
Stifling a gasp, I turn toward the bed. Ty lies curled in a ball, his face hidden in the pillow, crying.
“Ty?” I bend over him, rub his shoulders and gently peel his fingers from a death grip on the bedding.
He twists in my arms and buries his face into my chest.
“What happened?” I whisper, trying to keep some semblance of calm in my voice. “Did he hit you?”
When he doesn’t answer, I push Ty far enough away to see his face. Blotches of red mar his features, but no swelling or bruising.
I swallow. “Tell me if he touched you.”
“He pu-pu-pushed me.” Ty’s slender frame trembles as I pull him close. “And b-b-broke my guitar.”
I squeeze my eyes shut, wrapping a tourniquet around the fury building in my chest, and take a deep breath. “Don’t worry about your guitar, okay? We’ll get you a new one. But I need to know if Dad hurt you in any other way. Where did he push you?”
The events come out in as many broken pieces as the guitar strewn across the floor. I reassemble them into a story that starts with Ty practicing his guitar with his earbuds in, and not hearing Dad yelling at him to stop making noise. It ended with our father bursting into Ty’s bedroom, shoving him into the wall and smashing his guitar across the floor, then stamping on it.
Once Ty has calmed down, I snap photos of the mangled guitar, for what it’s worth. Once I’ve confirmed neither Mom nor Dad are on the property, I let Pepper inside and tell Ty to pack a bag, because we’re leaving.
Ty throws a sports duffel on his bed and turns to me. “We have to take Pepper.”
Part of me wants to argue, but Ty’s right. Pepper’s no less prone to abuse than either of us. I throw clothes, toiletries and my most valuable belongings into a bag, including the graduation gift for Shri.
This whole situation reminds me too much of the past, of how powerless I was at Ty’s age. I grip the zipper tab and swipe it across the bag. History can’t be repeated. I won’t let it.
About the Author Alex Hayes wrote her first fiction story when she was twelve. Inspired by her mother’s storytelling, she began work on her first novel, Ice Cracks, at eighteen.
She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. In her twenties, she moved from Marin County, California to Boston, Massachusetts, where she built a career as an IT professional in database engineering. In 2004, she self-published Ice Cracks, which became a semi-finalist in the 2005 IPPY Awards.
Alex splits her time between Grand Junction, Colorado and Guanajuato, Mexico. When she isn’t writing, she’s helping her partner, Lee, renovate a 450 year old hacienda. She is mother to one beautiful daughter and many wonderful cats..
Welcome to the book blitz for BEASTS OF THE FROZEN SUN, the first book in the young adult fantasy series, Frozen Sun Saga, by Jill Criswell. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
BEASTS OF THE FROZEN SUN (Frozen Sun Saga #1) by Jill Criswell
Synopsis Burn brightly. Love fiercely. For all else is dust.
Every child of Glasnith learns the last words of Aillira, the god-gifted mortal whose doomed love affair sparked a war of gods and men, and Lira of clan Stone knows the story better than most. As a descendant of Aillira and god-gifted in her own right, she has the power to read people’s souls, to see someone’s true essence with only a touch of her hand.
When a golden-haired warrior washes up on the shores of her homeland–one of the fearful marauders from the land of the FrozenSun–Lira helps the wounded man instead of turning him in. After reading his soul, she realizes Reyker is different than his brethren who attack the coasts of Glasnith. He confides in her that he’s been cursed with what his people call battle-madness, forced to fight for the warlord known as the Dragon, a powerful tyrant determined to reignite the ancient war that Aillira started.
As Lira and Reyker form a bond forbidden by both their clans, the wrath of the Dragon falls upon them and all of Glasnith, and Lira finds herself facing the same tragic fate as her ancestor. The battle for Lira’s life, for Reyker’s soul, and for their peoples’ freedom has only just begun.
Excerpt Something made me stop.
There, sitting atop my father’s black warhorse, was a Westlander unlike any other. Long ashen hair trailed behind him. He was bare chested, as if he didn’t fear the threat of blades on his skin, and he radiated a sleek, savage sort of beauty.
His gaze locked on me.
The Savage prodded his mount. Leaning to one side, he brought his axe crashing down into the Sons of Stone who ran at him, wielding his weapon like an extension of himself. My clan’s warriors fell. Blood splashed in waves across his skin.
His eyes never left mine. My limbs were heavy as boulders, stiff as plaster.
A voice called my name. Rhys rushed toward me, sword in hand. His eyes darted from me to the Savage, trying to reach me first.
The horse was coming. My legs wouldn’t move.
The Savage veered at the last second, passing between Rhys and me, so close his calf brushed my arm, and I shivered. He circled his horse back in our direction, and Rhys grabbed me, yanking me forward. The warhorse’s hooves pounded, nearly on top of us. We only made it a few steps before Rhys stumbled and choked, eyes widening. His hand slipped from my arm. His sword fell into the grass.
A battle-axe was buried between his shoulders.
My scream was the raw, wrenching keen of an animal. I caught Rhys as he collapsed, lowering him to the ground. I looked around wildly, calling for Father and Garreth.
The Savage leaped off his horse.
“Stay away!” I let go of Rhys and picked up his sword.
With a swift kick, the Savage knocked the weapon from my grip. I drew the dagger, and he slapped it away too. He pulled me to him, smelling my hair, running his fingers through it. I hammered my fists against him, but it did nothing. This close, I saw every detail of his face, his body. I absorbed them through a haze of shock.
Older than Garreth, younger than Father. Tall, muscled, with thick hair hanging down his back in braided ropes of silvery-white. Eyes a shade of greenish-gold, like a cat’s. Black ink crawling across one entire side of his body: up his stomach, chest, and neck, then back down the length of his arm to his fingertips, coiling along one jaw and cheek, to his forehead, disappearing into his scalp. Knotted patterns, with intricately etched claws and tails and reptilian heads interwoven between the twisted links.
If the other Westlanders were frost giants, he was a leviathan; if they were beasts, he was their king.
I struggled feebly, my palms smacking his chest. Anguish had torn my mind wide open, left my abilities untethered; my consciousness plunged into the depths of his soul. Except what I dove into was nothing. Colorless, shapeless, void of sensation. The space was starkly, infinitely empty. A barren abyss.
The Savage had no soul.
I pulled my hands free, snapping back into my body as the Savage grasped my chin. “What you see, soul-reader?” The words sounded cumbersome to his mouth. He took hold of my wrist, bending it to expose the scar of flame Reyker had marked me with, laughing like my scar was a joke meant to offend him. “He is here.”
The Savage thrust one of his hands into my hair, holding my head still, and the other tightened around my waist, crushing me against him. He pulled a delicate knife from his belt, pushing my hair back and sliding the stiletto behind my ear. The blade bit into my flesh in short, deep cuts. He was carving me. Marking me, just as Reyker had, only this felt far more violent. I whimpered as blood dripped down my neck. “Mine,” he said.
A threat and a promise.
Author Jill Criswell
About the Author JillCriswell is a writer of Young Adult Historical Fantasy. She was born and raised in the swamps of northeastern Florida. She earned degrees in English and Psychology and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Central Florida. Her greatest passion, besides reading and writing, is traveling the world; she’s visited fifty countries across six continents, falling in love with places like Iceland, Namibia, and Cambodia. She works as a university English teacher and lives in South Carolina, near the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, with her husband and daughter (who is named after a volcano in Iceland).
Author Sarah Robinson is revealing the cover to WYLDE FIRE, the first book in the new adult contemporary romance series, 100 Proof, releasing September 17, 2019. See below for information on the book, pre-order links, and an exclusive excerpt.
Synopsis Sam Wylde is ready to prove he’s more than just the privileged son of a wealthy Southern dynasty.
Wyldefire Whiskey is poised to take Nashville by storm—and with any luck, overshadow the scandal of his cheating ex-girlfriend marrying his brother. The only problem? This gruff country boy has no idea how to throw a launch party that will get people talking.
The answer to everything might just be Holly Glen. A party wrapped up in one tiny woman, Holly is tattooed, tempting, and exactly the event planner Sam needs to liven up his brand—and his life. He can give her what she needs, too.
All it will take is a ring on her finger.
Falling in real love with his fake wife was not part of the plan—but one shot of Holly isn’t going to be enough..
WYLDE FIRE (100 Proof #1) by Sarah Robinson (Full Cover)
Excerpt “You cannot do this to me, Cassie,” Sam Wylde argued over the speakerphone attached to his truck’s dashboard. He cringed as his Southern drawl came out a little thicker than usual. Frustration did that to him, and right now it was taking everything in him to not start cussing.
With a deft twist of his wrist, he steered his truck into the parking lot next to Town Hall, cutting off another car with a halfhearted wave of acknowledgement. He needed to pick up several permits before the city offices closed, leaving no room for pleasantries.
Damn, for a Saturday, the lot sure is packed.
He sighed and forced his attention back to the phone call. “We’ve got a few months until the launch of the entire brand. Everything I’ve done the last two years is riding on this.”
“I’m really sorry,” Cassie, his event planner, said from the other end of the phone. Or former event planner, apparently. “But I can’t be in two places at once, and neither can my influencers and vendors. We’re booked for that day now.”
Teetering on the brink of exploding, Sam breathed in slowly. “But. You. Signed. With. Us. First.” He ground the words out slow and steady.
“Technically, I haven’t signed an actual contract. I was helping you out as a favor to Noah,” Cassie informed him. “And where I go…so do my connections.”
Author Sarah Robinson
About the Author Aside from being a Top 10 Barnes & Noble and Amazon Bestseller, Sarah Robinson is a native of the Washington, DC area and has both her Bachelors and Masters Degrees in criminal psychology. She is married to a wonderful man who is just as much of an animal rescue enthusiasts as she is. Together, they own a zoo of rescues including everything from mammals to reptiles to marsupials, as well as volunteering and fostering for multiple animal shelters.
Welcome to the book blitz for HYBRID, a stand-alone adult science fiction horror novel, by Rebecca Henry. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis Agent Van of the CIA is sent to an Australian underground military surveillance base called Pine Gap. Agent Van finds himself thrown in a conspiracy cover up of an ancient alien race known as species X. Agent Van falls in love with Annika, a mysterious and uncommon woman who displays unusual abilities, leading Van to question her own origin. Mystery and horror explode around Agent Van during a cave diving exhibition to search for a lost colleague referred to as Agent One. The only clue for Agent Van and his team is a cryptic message carved on a wall inside the bleak cave that reads “Agent One is gone. No more Agent One.” Terror arrives as the agents are trapped inside the ominous cave. Agent Van soon learns that there is more to Pine Gap than Species X.
Excerpt #2 I was the fourth in our group to go through the tunnel, and my insides twisted with fright. The Tomb lived up to its name. We army-crawled on our bellies through the hollow passage for what felt like forever, but was actually about ninety meters. There was hardly enough room to move; the space was so tight that there was only about three or four inches of extra space between by body and the sides of the Tomb I slithered through like a snake. I couldn’t imagine how the General was managing it. Sweat beaded on my forehead despite the cold. I stopped to gather my wits, preparing myself for the challenge ahead.
Annika’s soft voice carried from behind me. “Take shallow breaths. And move slowly, the rocks are sharp,” she instructed, her voice soothing. “Don’t panic. You can make it out. Just keep calm and keep going.”
I tried to duck my head to see her, but the space was too tight. I knew she was right; logically, I wanted to believe her words, but fear was tightening its grip.
“Maybe you should go first?” I squeezed through the tightness of my throat. “I don’t like leaving you back there alone.”
I could hear the smile in her voice. “Don’t think I’d fit,” she said with a low chuckle. The thought of the smile I knew she wore in this dark hell was enough to get me through this tomb.
“Don’t worry about me, Van,” she continued, “Caves are a second home for me. Don’t worry, I’ll meet you on the other side.”
It was quiet inside the Tomb, no wind, no noise, only the sound of my breathing, the shuffle of my teammates ahead lost in the echoing dark. My head felt heavy, my neck stiff from being cranked to the side. There was no space to relax, and sharp rocks lay all around me. I kept my eyes trained on the wall to my right, its surface mere inches from my face. Looking ahead made me dizzy; I could see nothing but a void of darkness. I moved my left elbow forward two inches, then my right, dragging my legs behind me. Rocks scraped and stung as I forced myself deeper inside the Tomb.
It was dead quiet; no other sounds accompanied me on my crawl, and it was easy to imagine I was alone—trapped. I fought the sensation and pushed down the fear. Is this tunnel getting smaller? I was breathing heavy from the effort it took to move. No breeze, no noise, no light, no other signs of life. Only the dark and my panting breath. Fear began to get the better of me, its icy finger trickling down my neck and back. What if I made a wrong move inside this death trap and unleashed a hell of rocks, and an entire mountain came down to crush me?
I shook my head to dislodge the horror from my thoughts. I focused on Annika’s words: Just keep breathing and I’ll make it out. I concentrated on my crawling, counting each slithering movement. One, two, three. Keep crawling, keep moving. Four, five six. It’s only nine meters, not a massive stretch. Seven, eight, nine, ten. Wait—what was that noise?
A strange sound interrupted my counting. I paused to listen, but only heard my breath. I tilted my head searching for its source. Sliding rocks? That wasn’t right. The sound was too steady. I wanted to call back to Annika to see if she heard it, too, but I didn’t want to scare her. Maybe it was some rookie hazing, but the General didn’t seem like the type to tolerate that stuff. You are panicking, Van. Chalking up the sound to my imagination, I continued to move. Eleven, twelve, thirteen, fourteen. I stopped. There it was again. It wasn’t my imagination.
A sharp wind blasted my face, making me blink. How was that possible? The sound grew louder, and my heart raced as adrenaline flooded my system. I needed to get the hell out of there. I no longer cared about the dangerous rocks I was crawling through. I moved my arms faster and willed my body to get out of that death trap. The sound grew louder with each movement I made. Scrape… scrape. The sound was all around me. What is that? It sounded as if someone was in front of me scraping two stones together, but that was impossible.
The strange wind blasted me again, a sharp wind as if it was mixed with ice. My frozen eyes stung, and I fought to keep them open. I drew my elbows close to my body to fumble with my headlamp, trying to aim it up ahead, but I couldn’t get it to work. The space was too tight, and I couldn’t reach to click it on. Scrape… scrape… scrape… scrape… scrape. The sound was everywhere; it rang in my head, setting my teeth on edge.
Behind me, Annika’s headlamp clicked on. “Van I’m right behind you. You’ve got to keep moving.” No longer calm and musical, Annika’s voice thrummed with urgency, and I knew we weren’t alone. Something else was in the Tomb with us—something threatening. I could feel its menacing presence as dread crept over me.
“We’ve gotta get out of this tomb, Van! Go! Go as fast as you can!” Annika’s order kicked my ass into full gear, and I crawled as fast as the small space would allow, sharp rocks slicing my torso and forearms as I continued through the Tomb. I didn’t give a thought to my own safety— it was Annika. She was behind me, and if I didn’t get out of here, she’d be trapped behind me, like wine under a cork. Whatever was in the Tomb with us would get her soon. I had to get out—fast. Annika needed to reach safety. We were getting close; I could hear our teammates ahead of us, screaming for us to move, get out now! Behind me, Annika’s headlamp went out, and total blackness filled the space. I couldn’t see my hand one inch in front of my face.
That’s when I felt it. I heard a hissing in my ear as a putrid stench invaded my nostrils. I froze, petrified in sheer terror. I could no longer hear Annika behind me. I lost sight of the opening, where I was, what was happening. I couldn’t breathe, the small space closed in on me, suffocating me. A slithering tongue touched my neck, tasting my skin. Like a deer frozen before advancing headlights, I couldn’t move as I felt whatever it was taste my perspiration. When its tongue danced across the pools of salt on my face, I sprang into frantic action. I pounded on my headlamp, begging it to turn on while I reached for the creature in the pitch blackness. I swung my fist but it found only rock. I craned around to try to see behind me, only to feel the creature lick the other side of my neck, hissing and clicking mirthfully. I jolted my head it its direction, ready to pound my fist in its skull. Nothing was there.
From the opening ahead, Agent Austin lit a flare and shined it inside the Tomb. It was lit only a moment before it was snuffed out, but it was long enough for me to catch a glimpse of the creature. It happened in a flash, and I sensed it more than I saw it. It was behind my team members in the open space, a creature hunched on all fours. Not quite humanoid, but not animal either. Its ears were pointed up, as if it were listening to us. I couldn’t make out all its features, but it appeared to be hairless with shining, white skin. The creature dragged one of its claw-like hands against the rock wall—the noise I heard inside the tomb. It stared at me with white, bulging eyes. It drew back its hideous pale lips to drag a forked tongue over sharp dagger-like teeth.
The light blinked out, and we were again plunged into darkness.
Author Rebecca Henry
About the Author Rebecca Henry is a newly published author. Her debut novel is The Lady Raven, A Dark Cinderella Tale, which was published in 2017. The Lady Raven, is for those Rebecca Henry is a world traveler living abroad in England. Besides being an American author of two published books, Rebecca is also a podcast talk host on the show The Latte Talk. The podcast was inspired by her novel, Louisiana Latte and her diva sister Deb. Rebecca is a serious vegan, gardener, wife and mom who practices yoga.
Welcome to the book blitz for LOVE REPAIRED, a stand-alone adult contemporary romance, by Deana Birch. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis Attorney Amee sets aside her own needs to juggle the broken pieces of her life and family until mechanic Ben repairs her heart.
Divorce attorney Amee Benton—who has an ex of her own—is pretty sure she’s a #MomFail. Showing up late on a Friday night to retrieve her car from the shop and finding the pink frosted cupcakes she forgot to leave at her daughter’s ballet camp confirms it.
When mechanic, Ben Mathis, confesses to stealing one of the confections and asks who is taking care of Amee, she knows he’s a unicorn—a magical, beautiful beast who surely only exists in fantasies. And she tells him just that. With an f bomb for good measure.
Amee has three things Ben finds irresistible in a woman—brains, a family, and a serious potty mouth. At a chance run-in at Ben’s own personal hell, AKA the mall, he summons the courage to ask her out. Though Amee is leery of dating a younger man, and Ben is more than aware of their social gap, the two take a chance.
But Amee’s life isn’t like his. And when her ex returns and the doubting divorcée blunders, all of Ben’s insecurities are piqued anew. Now, Amee must prove to Ben his worth is much more than stand-in dad and rebound boyfriend or she’ll watch magic gallop off into the forest forever.
Amee With my hands in the pocket of the cardigan that I’d grabbed, I sat on the steps of my front porch and examined my toes. I was going to need to revisit regular lady grooming if the thing with Ben went any further.
The purr of a motor came from down the street. The closer the headlights approached, the faster my heart raced. Is this feeling the same thing rule-breaking babysitters go through when they have their boyfriends illegally visit them while on duty?
Ben’s big black truck pulled into my driveway and the sound and shine died. I stood and walked over to the driver’s side where the window was halfway down.
“Hey, Cupcake.” He rubbed his beard and leaned back.
“You sure you won’t come in?”
He gestured to the other side of the truck and said, “Hop in.”
I closed the car door as silently as I could and tried to find any residual confidence the second-guessing of the prior twenty minutes hadn’t washed away. “I hope you weren’t in the middle of something.”
“Nah. Nate and I watched Laurel and Hardy all night and I had just put him to bed.”
“He doesn’t look like you.” I thought back to the little boy from the mall.
“No reason why he would.” When I tilted my head, he continued. “He’s not mine. Unfortunately. But I love him like he is.”
A man who steps up to the plate? Yes, please. I repositioned myself to get an eyeful of Ben Mathis. Between my front porch and the streetlight, there was enough of a glimmer to bounce in his blue eyes.
“He’s my cousin’s kid. His dad died in Iraq.”
“Oh. I’m sorry.”
Nate was another fatherless child. Between work and my personal life, I’d seen too many.
“What about you? What led you to want to do something nice for yourself? Which, as it turns out, sounds nice for me too.” His dimples deepened, turning me into putty in PJs.
I dropped my head behind me and exhaled.
“Every Saturday morning for the last six months, I’ve driven the girls to see their dad. The little one doesn’t want to go anymore and the big one would prefer if we lived across the street from the prison.”
“That must be tough.” He stared ahead at my closed garage door. “For him. For everybody.”
“It’s definitely not easy. And we can’t go next week, so he and Carly are pissed. And I’m their favorite punching bag.”
Ben turned to me and narrowed his eyes.
“So, you called your favorite unicorn? You think I can make you feel better?” He lifted one of his thick blond eyebrows as if he was daring me to be bold.
“I have a lot of baggage. Two kids, I work all the time…”
“Ah, the list. I knew you had one.” He chuckled to himself and stretched. His clothes were just as casual as mine, black sweatpants and a plain white T-shirt. He crossed his arms and smirked over to me.
List or no list, I needed to be honest. I continued, “I don’t have a lot to give. I mean, I don’t even know if I believe in love at this point. Not that I’m…” God, the horror. What am I assuming we would be?
“It’s okay. Get it out. Tell me all the shit inside your beautiful head. Then I’ll know what I’m up against.” His gentle words coaxed their way to the other side of my wall.
I pressed my palms into my forehead. “I just don’t—”
“Say it. Ask it. I promise. I’ll answer.”
“I don’t get it.” I dropped my hands as the curiosity bubbled. “Why me? I mean, you’re hot and sweet and single. Why would someone like you want all the fucked-up shit suitcase that is my life?”
“Fucked-up shit suitcase?”
“Yes. So why?” I slipped off my Flip-flops and tucked my foot under my rear.
He looked forward and blinked a few times.
Crap, maybe my sales pitch of how messed up I am worked.
“I honestly don’t know. That first night, I thought you were pretty, then funny. And I was sure you were going to be pissed at me for the cupcake. But instead, you called me a unicorn.”
“A fucking unicorn,” I corrected.
His eyes met mine and he smiled. “Exactly. Then, when I saw you in the mall, I just wanted to know you. Who the hell knows why there’s a spark? But there is. I’m just trying to figure out what it means and respect you and your family on the way.”
I let the words settle between us and used my thumbnail to push back a cuticle on my other hand. “What if this doesn’t go anywhere?”
“Then it doesn’t. I mean, I’ll probably still check out your ass when I see you again, but we’ll both live.”
The grin on my face was hard to hide. “You check out my ass?”
“Every chance I get.” He wet his lips. “Which leads me to your original message.”
“I have plenty of rooms with locks on the doors in that house.” I tried my sexiest voice, as rusty as it was.
“I told you…I’m not going in there.” His deep, breathy words dripped with ultimatum. “Whatever it is you want, you’re gonna have to come and get it.”
Unicorns were beautiful. Unicorns were magic. But they had no idea what two years of middle-aged sexual frustration and solitude could do to a woman. I climbed over the center console and wedged myself between him and the steering wheel.
Straddling him, I gazed down into his eyes as his hands skimmed my hips then traveled to my ass. As he squeezed, he tilted his head onto the headrest behind him. I played with the thick hair at the bottom of his neck. My breasts perked, and my old but ever-so-welcome friend arousal joined the party. I needed to taste him, to devour him, to breathe him. Aware of my thin cotton pajamas and the soft fabric of his sweats, I swayed my hips once.
He exhaled, leaving his mouth barely open. As gently as I could, I touched my lips to his. I peppered delicate pecks down his jawline to his ear. I flicked the lobe and pulled on it with my teeth. When I reached my hand under his T-shirt and caressed his hard stomach, it was way better than I’d imagined. Rock solid and ripped. Thank you, unicorn gods.
“I want to do dirty things to you, Ben,” I whispered in his ear. With another grind of my hips, I found the stiffness in his pants and rolled over it again. “Dirty things, with my dirty fucking mouth.” I kissed a trail to his lips and he strained to meet me. Instead, I pulled back and smiled. “You sure you don’t want to come in?”
Ben grumbled and he moved his hands from my ass to hips. With a sexy smirk, he asked, “Are you teasing me?”
I brought my other hand under his T-shirt and I shrugged.
He grinned. “One, I fucking love it. Two, sorry, Cupcake, I’m not coming in. Not tonight.”
I moved closer and kissed him once. I looked over his face for any signs to stop. He dug his fingers into my flesh and drew me nearer.
That time, the kiss was his. It was deeper, harder, rougher. His whiskers scratched my face and the friction and intensity of his movements were well worth the cost of the burn. I intensified the grind, eager for what might someday await. My skin tingled. Had kissing always been that fantastic? I honestly couldn’t remember.
He slowed, pulling back between the brushing of our lips, then withdrew completely. “You should go in.”
I slumped down and rested my forehead on his thick shoulder. “When can I see you again?”
When I sat up, he reached for the door handle.
“That’s a long time,” I protested.
The click of the release brought the cool night air and I climbed down.
“You’re worth the wait, Cupcake.” He winked.
“How do you know?” My arms crossed.
“You just showed me.”
We said good night and I walked to the door, hoping my pajama pants-clad butt was worth watching.
Author Deana Birch
About Author Contemporary romance and erotica writer Deana Birch was named after her father’s first love, who just so happened not to be her mother. Born and raised in the Midwest, she made stops in Los Angeles and New York before settling in Europe where she lives with her own blue-eyed Happily Ever After. Her days are spent teaching yoga, playing tennis, ruining her children’s French homework, cleaning up dog vomit, writing her next book, or reading someone else’s.
Welcome to the book blitz for THE CAVE, the seventh book in the adult romantic suspense series, Berry Springs, by Amanda McKinney. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway. For a limited time, you can pick up the eBook for just $0.99 or read for free with Kindle Unlimited.
Synopsis After getting trapped in a remote cave, two strangers must work together to survive while being hunted by a ruthless killer…
Life is full of surprises, rescue swimmer Owen Grayson knows that better than anyone, especially when he’s forced to take an indefinite military leave and return home to pick up the pieces of his dad’s latest mistake. As Owen struggles to settle back into his roots, he is called to a remote cave where he discovers the mysterious death of his uncle wasn’t an accident at all. As the clues begin to unravel, it becomes apparent that the cave is hiding secrets worth killing for… and everyone on site has a target on their back.
Coming off a bad break up and an even worse few days, Forensic Anthropologist Dr. Sadie Hart is brought in to excavate human remains found deep in the treacherous mountains of Berry Springs, in a cave rumored to be haunted, nonetheless. When her team stumbles upon a dead body before they even reach the cave, Sadie quickly realizes this is going to be no ordinary job—especially when she meets a particularly bull-headed Adonis who claims to be related to the victim.
A storm hits, trapping Sadie and Owen inside the cave with nothing but a flashlight and a small backpack with provisions… and someone who wants them dead. As the odds stack up against them, Sadie begins to fear she and Owen will become the next pile of bones found deep in the catacombs of Crypts Cavern…
THE CAVE is a standalone romantic suspense novel.
Excerpt #2 OWEN WATCHED DR. Sadie Hart pop open the trunk of her SUV and give orders to her team as they pulled packs and bags from the back.
He wasn’t sure what he expected when Colson had told him they’d called in a doctor to excavate the bones, but it definitely wasn’t the steely-eyed, brick-balled, smoking-hot stunner standing before him now.
He guessed she was somewhere in her early thirties—which was his first shocker—with dark, hooded, almond-shaped eyes that were as skeptical as they were beautiful. Chestnut hair against smooth, pale skin and a face with defined, strong lines that seemed to fit her personality. And the sexiest pair of pouty, come-fuck-me lips he’d ever seen in his life. Based on the worn khaki tactical pants and scuffed leather hiking boots, Sadie was no stranger to the woods. And, based on the curves in the back of her pants and the T-shirt that stretched against generous breasts, she wasn’t unaccustomed to getting looks from men. But the way she carried herself, the squared shoulders, no-nonsense braid of brown hair that ran down her back—occasionally falling over her shoulder, remedied by an annoyed flick of her hand—and look of determination in her eyes told him that she’d fought for her title as doctor, almost as much as she’d fought for the respect that came along with that title. A bit prickly on the initial impression, and perhaps one of those women who’d cut you at the balls just to prove she could? No doubt about it.
He watched her shrug on a blue backpack that was half her weight, and sweep her braid to the side.
Her gaze flickered to him again, as it had done a dozen times since she’d stepped out of her SUV. Subtle, stolen glances laced with questions—or interest, perhaps. He wasn’t sure.
But something inside him wanted to find out.
Author Amanda McKinney
About the Author Amanda McKinney is the bestselling and multi-award-winning author of more than ten romantic suspense and mystery novels. She wrote her debut novel, LETHAL LEGACY, in 2017 after walking away from her career to become a writer and stay-at-home mom. Set in small, southern towns, Amanda’s books are page-turning murder mysteries packed with steamy romance..
Welcome to the book blitz for NO GOOD DOCTOR, a stand-alone new adult contemporary romance, by Wall Street Journal bestselling author Nicole Snow. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
NO GOOD DOCTOR by Nicole Snow
About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited Title: NO GOOD DOCTOR Author: Nicole Snow Release Date: July 29, 2019 Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance Links:Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis Dashing. Jacked. Bad tempered. My new boss, everybody. Now what’s the cure for smitten?
Pinch me. I can’t believe I’m working under him. Dr. Gray Caldwell. Hottest, swooniest, stormiest bachelor ever. Insanely tall. Unfair perfection. Intimidating abs and X-ray glares. Doc puts the animal back in veterinarian.
My dream job should be all puppies and kittens. Turns out, my new boss hates three things:
1. Small town drama. Baby, we’ve got tons.
2. Pets in distress – and he’s their hero every time.
3. Anybody poking around his past. Like me. Oh, crud.
But how could I resist the best mystery in Heart’s Edge? I wish I had. Unraveling Gray is a dangerous game. One wrong move could end our little town. Plus this gorgeous, complicated grump plays for keeps.
I barely recognize the man he becomes vowing to protect me. A beastly shield who sets every rule on fire. Then one stolen, five alarm kiss sends my whole world spinning. Hello, trouble. Farewell, sanity. What if it’s not the good doctor who claims me – but the bad one?
From Wall Street Journal bestselling author Nicole Snow – two hearts on the line and a whole town’s fate. A badass vet slays his demons, saves pets, and makes the firefly he swore he’d never chase his. Full length romance novel with a Happily Ever After worth the purrs and wagging tails.
Whatever’s in that box is going to hurt itself if we don’t move. It’s flapping around frantically. So much the box is about to bounce right off the chair.
I glance at Doc worriedly. He’s standing there rigid, breathing hard, but finally he nods and joins me, striding toward the chair. I clasp the box and hold it still, and he gingerly lifts the lid off, both of us leaning back slightly just in case something comes blasting out.
The poor hummingbird inside flops on it’s one good wing, desperately trying to fly. It takes all of three seconds to see the reason why. Its the other wing, hanging at an odd angle, immobile. The bone looks clearly broken close to the main joint.
Poor thing! I nearly whimper with hurt sympathy, reaching in instantly to clasp its body in my hand, spreading my fingers around the broken wing while gently pinning the other wing to its jewel-toned, glittering side so it can’t thrash around and hurt itself more. It stops fighting immediately but opens its long, narrow beak in the saddest little squeaky sound ever as I cradle it in my hands.
“Gray!” I murmur pleadingly, not even thinking about the intimate use of his name.
He lets out a rough sigh, raking a hand back through his dark hair, then nods tightly, rising to his feet.
I want to know what’s happening, want to know why that woman is making veiled threats toward both of us, and how she knows Peters or what Peters might’ve told Doc about her. But this poor little feathered jewel’s life comes first.
He tosses his head toward the back and, cradling the crying hummingbird gingerly, I follow him as quick as I can. This bird’s life is in his capable hands now.
And honestly? So is my heart.
Because every time I look at him over the table as we gently bind and splint the bird’s wing, when our eyes meet, it happens. My pulse races. My breath catches.
My whole freaking world pops a screw loose and comes undone.
I remember him saying that he’ll protect me. Just as much as he’ll protect every small, precious thing that winds up in his care.
I’m not sure what’s racing faster – my mind or my heart.
Because the more I think about it, the more it frightens and thrills me, wondering what Gray freaking Caldwell would do to protect someone like me, if push came to shove.
Author Nicole Snow
About The Author NicoleSnow is a Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author. She found her love of writing by hashing out love scenes on lunch breaks and plotting her great escape from boardrooms. Her work roared onto the indie romance scene in 2014 with her Grizzlies MC series.
Since then Snow aims for the very best in growly, heart-of-gold alpha heroes, unbelievable suspense, and swoon storms aplenty. With over a million books sold, she lives for the joy of making two people fight with every bit of their soul for a Happily Ever After.
Current fan favorites include her Enguard Protectors series, accidental love novels, plus long beloved MC romance thrillers like the Grizzlies and Deadly Pistols.
Welcome to the blog tour for COVERT VENGEANCE, the second book in the adult romantic suspense/military romance series, Vengeance, by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Kaylea Cross. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, and an exclusive excerpt.
Valkyrie hacker Amber Brown is deadly in her own right, but her preferred weapon is a keyboard. So after her teammates left her for dead, she took her revenge the way she was trained to—swiftly and brutally. Except one of her targets might be innocent. To right that wrong, Amber vows to rescue the at-risk Valkyrie no matter the cost, and this time she’s working alone. So when a sexy stranger shows up in the middle of a firefight and announces he’s been sent by her sister, it’s going to take a whole lot more than his word to make her trust him.
Chasing redemption may prove deadly.
Elite gun for hire Jesse Cordova lives on the edge of the law. When a new job offer sets off warning bells, he digs deeper and finds the startling truth. The woman he’s been tasked with capturing is a secret government assassin, and Amber Brown is unlike any target he’s gone after before. But bringing her in opens them up to a whole new level of danger, pitting them against one of the most ruthless assassins in the world. Now that the sexy Valkyrie has stolen his heart, Jesse will risk everything to see their mission through—knowing that the only way this ends is with one of them dying.
Excerpt #2 Footsteps sounded over their heads. Then raised voices came from outside the stairwell door.
“Get behind me,” Amber said, pushing Kiyomi back. She raised her weapon just as the door burst open and fired at the first man through it, catching him low in the chest. He cried out and toppled down the stairs.
Amber was already moving sideways toward the far wall, herding Kiyomi backward as bullets ripped down the staircase. Legs appeared in her line of sight. She fired at the thighs, was rewarded with another guttural cry as the next man tumbled down, but more rushed onto the steps before she could kill him.
She got off four more shots at the approaching men, hitting two more in the chest, then a large shadow detached from the steps and came hurtling at her.
A huge, heavy weight slammed into her side, taking her to the floor. She braced and grunted as her back hit the cold concrete, driving the air from her lungs.
Chest burning, she shoved the man off and rolled away from him. As soon as she was free she aimed her weapon at him, but Kiyomi leaped into action. Though it must have been agony for her the other Valkyrie lunged up and wound the chain binding her handcuffs together around the man’s neck, then twisted.
His eyes bulged and he clawed at the chains strangling him as Amber got to her knees and changed the angle of her aim. But Kiyomi didn’t let go, her teeth bared in a feral snarl as she choked the life out of him. They fell forward and hit the ground with a thud, Kiyomi still pulling on the chains.
Struggling for air and almost out of ammo, Amber reached for a fresh mag and shifted to one knee, turning to face the stairs as more shouts and running footsteps reached her from above. Three more men appeared in the open doorway at the top of the stairs.
She whipped her weapon up to fire but before she could pull the trigger, shots rang out from behind the men and they started falling. She watched in astonishment as they all slid down the stairs one by one, dead or dying, smearing blood all over the stairs.
Staggering to her feet, she blinked to clear her hazy vision just as another figure appeared at the top of the steps. She jerked her pistol up to aim at his center mass, then froze when his face came into view.
Amber stared up at him in astonishment, her pulse roaring like the ocean in her ears.
About the Author New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Kaylea Cross writes edge-of-your-seat military romantic suspense. Her work has won many awards, including the Daphne du Maurier Award of Excellence, and has been nominated multiple times for the National Readers’ Choice Awards. A Registered Massage Therapist by trade, Kaylea is also an avid gardener, artist, Civil War buff, Special Ops aficionado, belly dance enthusiast and former nationally-carded softball pitcher. She lives in Vancouver, BC with her husband and family.
Welcome to the blog tour for LILIES ON MAIN, the fourth book in the adult contemporary romance series, Granite Harbor, by bestselling author, J. Lynn Bailey. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, and an exclusive excerpt.
LILIES ON MAIN (Granite Harbor #4) by J. Lynn Bailey
Synopsis For bookstore owner Lydia White, another geographical move doesn’t faze her. She doesn’t even bat an eyelash at one more curveball thrown into her life plan. Five years running from a man who broke her heart, and her spirit, has taught her to keep her walls up.
Scared to trust again, Lydia swears to keep all men off limits. Even Aaron Casey, who seems too perfect to be true. With a daughter to protect and a life to build, she simply can’t afford to let her guard down.
But when William Davis, a seventy-something recovering alcoholic, steps into Lydia’s bookstore for the first time, holding the secret to saving both of their lives, she might have to learn that trusting a man with her life is just as dangerous as trusting one with her heart.
Excerpt “Come here,” I tell her as I lean in across the table.
“What?” She drops her head to the side.
“Come here,” I say again.
Lydia hesitantly leans in, but nevertheless, she leans in toward my mouth.
“I need you, Lydia,” I whisper in her mouth before I kiss her. She doesn’t move.
She doesn’t hesitate but welcomes my tongue into her mouth. I don’t care that I’m kissing her in front of patrons at the restaurant. I don’t care if the rumor mill starts. I’m making a statement. I love this woman, and I want everyone to know about it. Let them talk because kissing Lydia is like seeing in vivid color. Like feeling the warm breeze. Like the first taste of a beer on a hot summer day. Like the first time you hear I love you against a lover’s lips. The feeling of being wrapped up in a perfect moment. Where your mind is present and not in yesterday or today but right now. I pull away but only a little, so I can say, “I’m going to need you to touch my body tonight, Lyd.” I don’t ask if she’s okay with it. Because, looking in her eyes, I know she needs this, too.
About the Author Lynn Bailey has loved to write since she learned to read, around the second grade. When she isn’t running after her children, watching COPS, or on the hunt for her next Laffy Taffy joke, you can probably find her holed up in her writing room feverishly working on her next book. She lives in Northern California with her family.
Welcome to the blog tour for SEVERANCE, a stand-alone adult contemporary romance, by N.N. Britt. See below for information on the book, buy links, and an exclusive excerpt.
SEVERANCE by N.N. Britt
About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited Title: SEVERANCE Author: N.N. Britt Release Date: July 25, 2019 Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance Links:Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis They say first love doesn’t last. Alana’s ends on the night her boyfriend Dakota dies in a deadly shooting at a Portland club.
In an attempt to look for ways to deal with her grief, Alana reaches out to Dakota’s older brother Mikah, who’s struggling with moving on himself.
Both damaged beyond repair, neither Alana or Mikah know how to cope with their loss. What’s worse, they have zero idea how to handle the unexpected feelings they start developing for each other.
Excerpt Up close, he’s even more beautiful. He has an elegant face with a strong jaw and a cleft in his chin, high cheekbones, and wide-set eyes—all that, touched with a hint of softness. His skin’s the color of milk and honey and I wonder if he’s real. What if I’m dreaming? What if when I wake up, he’s gone?
My heart beats faster when he tosses a smile at me—wide, all-consuming, and with dimples—pretty much knocking me off my feet.
For a second there, I actually forget I’m a sweaty ice pop.
“Hey,” he says, ignoring the noise around us. His voice is a blend of rough and tender, and it washes over me like a warm, playful wave, flirty and tempting. Erasing all my surroundings.
“Hey.” I return the greeting, not sure if he can hear me when my tongue stiffens. He doesn’t need to, though. Because he looks at me as if he can read my mind, and I wonder if that’s why he’s smiling.
“Did you enjoy the show?” he asks without paying attention to Jess or Luke.
“Yes.” I nod. “Did you?” My eyes drink in every detail of him slowly and hungrily. He’s the kind of guy you’d see on Pinterest when you type “gothic fashion.” He wears rings and a chain necklace and his boots have metal studs. I can tell he’s put a lot of thought into his outfit.
“I did… I heard my buddy hooked you up with some tickets to see our show?” He gives Luke a pat on the back.
“Looks like it.” I breathe out, thrusting my hands into the tiny pockets of my jacket. The cloud of condensation coming from my mouth floats lazily in the air between us. “So…” I drawl, letting the words sit on my tongue for a moment. “You’re in a band.”
“Yep.” A head tilt. “And you like rock music.”
Author N.N. Britt
About the Author N.N. Britt is a Los Angeles-based music journalist and photographer whose articles appeared in numerous publications. Her photos have graced t-shirts, billboards, and CD covers. When she is not writing or drinking coffee, she is probably reading or attending a heavy metal show.
Welcome to the blog tour for BEAUTIFULLY DAMAGED, the first book in the adult contemporary sports romance series, Shine Design, by Laura Pavlov. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
BEAUTIFULLY DAMAGED (Shine Design #1) by Laura Pavlov
About the Book Title: BEAUTIFULLY DAMAGED Series: Shine Design Author: Laura Pavlov Release Date: July 24, 2019 Genre: Adult Contemporary Sports Romance Links:Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU
Synopsis Peyton Kroft was his forever, until the unthinkable happened. Walking away all those years ago had been the right thing to do. But, a decade later, he was ready to put the past behind him. Moving to San Francisco and hiring his first love, the city’s top designer, was a good place to start. Seeing her again stirred up feelings he thought he’d long buried. He wanted her. Just one taste of those sweet lips. The girl like a light leading him home. She’d found a way back in somewhere she could never stay. And, the worst part—he liked her there.
Jackson Vance broke her heart. He took half of it with him on his way out of town. Picking up the pieces hadn’t been easy, but more than nine years later, Peyton is living her best life. Coming face to face with her first love is not on the agenda. Emerald green eyes that see straight to her soul. Jackson Vance is beautiful, broken, and everything she’s ever wanted. He’s not a forever guy—but when their lips touch, it feels like forever. History has a way of repeating itself. The past still hovers like a dark cloud. But every dark cloud has a silver-lining.
Excerpt #1 The main door swung open, startling her. The water bottle slipped from her fingers and the liquid spilled down the front of her blouse. A gorgeous woman strode in, rocking a sexy black bandage-style dress, more of her on display than covered. Her breasts spilled from the narrow strap covering them, yet gravity appeared to be on her side. The sky-high red heels and platinum-blonde hair made her even more alluring. The woman the epitome of a bombshell.
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to startle you. Is Jackson around?” the woman inquired in a silky voice.
Jackson walked up behind her, his tone didn’t hide his surprise seeing the woman here. “Hey, I thought I was meeting you at Giordelli’s?”
Is this his girlfriend? Her mind spun at a mile a minute and her mouth went dry.
“I decided to Uber here and surprise you.” The words rolled off her tongue.
He looked between the women. “Peyton, this is Lana. Lana, Peyton.”
“Nice to meet you,” she lied to the sex-on-a-stick woman standing before her.
“It’s a pleasure. Jackson tells me you’re the best designer in all of San Francisco.” Her sultry voice like a swift kick in the gut.
Peyton smiled, her stare following the woman embracing Jackson, running her hand up the back of his neck and into his hair. Who the hell does she think she is? Fury nearly choked Peyton. She swallowed hard, trying not to reveal her anger. What right did she have to be angry. Sebastian made her happy. Didn’t stop her from wanting to throat punch the sex goddess? All logic left Peyton the day Jackson Vance sauntered back into her life.
He pulled away from Lana, his gaze landed on the front of Peyton’s blouse, still wet from the spill. Looking away, she didn’t want his pity. This was like a bad episode of The Bachelor—where the hot girl rides off into the sunset with a rose and the dowdy girl stands there like a fool, with a stain on the front of her blouse. No, thanks.
Ever so casually, she hoisted her briefcase strap over her shoulder. “You guys have a great night. See you tomorrow.”
“Here, let me help you with your bag,” Jackson said, coming up behind her and grabbing the strap of her briefcase.
“I’ve got it.” She kept a tight hold not wanting his help, but he slipped it from her fingers with ease.
Stepping outside, she walked beside the couple like a pathetic third wheel. Her breaths came faster, and it took all her strength not to run for her car. Lana wrapped her hand around his bicep, and they strode along the sidewalk, like a picture, perfect couple. Peyton bit down hard on her lower lip and fought the urge to demand Lana remove her hand from his body. He paused at his car, parked right in front of the restaurant, and unlocked the door for Lana. His date. They were going on a freaking date. Nausea rose in her throat.
“I can take my bag. I’m parked right over there,” Peyton snarled, and grabbed at the strap with impatience.
Lana stepped into the car and he shut the door, his voice calm and controlled. “Stop it. I’m walking you to your car.”
She marched ahead of him, unable to stop the onset of a full-blown meltdown. She unlocked the passenger door and held her other hand out for her bag, avoiding his gaze.
“Bag, please,” she hissed.
“You’re mad.” He chuckled, the man obviously pleased with himself.
“Don’t flatter yourself.”
“Okay, Pea. See you tomorrow.”
He continued to stand there when she walked around to the driver’s side.
Irked by his cool, aloof manner, “Your date is waiting for you.”
“And I’m waiting for you to get your ass in the car.” His emerald-green stare drilled into her.
Author Laura Pavlov
About the Author Laura Pavlov writes sweet and sexy contemporary romance that will make you both laugh and cry. She is happily married to her college sweetheart, mom to two awesome almost-grown kids, and dog-whisperer to a couple crazy yorkies. Laura resides in Las Vegas where she is living her own happily ever after.