Synopsis Ida and Engen’s 13-year-old friendship is altered when the death of their friend comes between them. Engen, guilt-ridden over Janelle’s passing, has become violent. Ida, in her grief, attempts to fill the loss with a one-night stand, which leaves her pregnant. As punishment, their parents force them to join a program called Youth of America Help a Nation, and they are sent to Africa on work assignments.
Enter Lev Rosen, Ida’s irresistible boss at the orphanage where she’s been appointed. Lev has his own connection with Ida, although she doesn’t know it yet. Engen hoped the time away would give him the courage to finally tell Ida his true feelings for her, but how can he do that now that she is getting closer to Lev?
WHAT REVIEWERS ARE SAYING:
★★★★★”Page Turner of a Coming of Age Tale. From the get go, I knew this wasn’t going to be a typical YA coming of age tale. Olson expertly crafts her characters with realism and humanity.” – JenMN
★★★★★ “Great new YA book! Team Engen? Team Lev? Or perhaps, simply, Team Ida!” – Devon N.
★★★★★ “The Beginnings of a Terrific New Novelist! I cannot recommend this book enough!” – Justin J Atkinson
Excerpt 2 I kicked Dan out ten minutes after dinner, because I wanted to visit Janelle’s parents before I left for Africa and time was running out. After rejecting Dan’s offer of a ride, I set out on foot for the two-block walk to Janelle’s house. I kept my head down and twirled a dandelion between my thumb and forefinger. I liked to test myself to make sure I could still find her house without usingmy eyes.
A few moments later, I stopped and turned my head sideways to see the familiar raised cement. I stepped onto the walk just as the screen door banged shut, and my head snapped up. I saw the side of Engen’s smiling face as he said goodbye to Mr. and Mrs. Lyndahl, and I was overcome with a feeling of tenderness toward him. The YAHN orientation had been rough. He’d stayed by my side whenever possible; we just hadn’t talked much.
Engen’s eyes swiveled around to mine and his smile faded. I dropped the dandelion, hating that I used to be the reason for his smile, not the disappearance of it. Head lowered, he walked toward me. I continued to trudge up the walk, eyes firmly fixed on the Lyndahl’s garden. We passed each other in slow motion, it seemed. I felt his warm fingers grasp my pinkie finger at the knuckle, and as he kept walking, his hand slowly ran down the entire length of my finger.
I half-glanced behind me in time to see his foot crush the discarded dandelion.
I know how you feel, I thought to the weed.
I rapped on the screen door. I’d spent the walk preparing myself for the inevitable misery I’d see in Mr. and Mrs. L.’s eyes, along with the slumped shoulders and hands that were so weak they could barely hold a coffee mug to their lips.
Mr. L. answered the door. He was 6’1, slim as a rail, and bald.
“Hi,” I greeted, careful not to meet his eyes. The failure to protect his daughter had a haunting way of reflecting out of them at all times. “Evening, Ida,” said Mr. L. “You and Engen just missed each other.”
“I miss him all the time now it seems,” I said, trying to sound nonchalant.
I walked in and closed my eyes at the absence of smell. When Janelle was alive, some sweet aroma was always in the air, sugar cookies or Rice Krispie bars. The untouched grapefruit half that sat in front of Mrs. L. on the kitchen table didn’t even emit a scent.
Mrs. L. let the curtain fall back in place. “Engen’s still not speaking to you?”
“No.” I pulled out a kitchen chair and sat. The cushion was warm. Engen.
“A tragedy born from a tragedy,” she mused.
“Oh, Mrs. L.,” I said consolingly. “The two are hardly comparable.”
“I made him promise to call you this evening.” Her hand flew to her cardigan. She closed it at the throat as if she were cold.
“Would you like something to drink, Ida?” Mr. L. asked.
“Water, please.” I shook my hair back.
“Your hair is so beautiful.” Mrs. L. gave a sad smile. “She envied it.”
I took the water glass from Mr. L. “Thank you.”
Mr. L. kissed his wife’s cheek. “I’m turning in.”
“It’s only seven-thirty. We aren’t going to see Ida again for half a year.”
Mr. L. took off his glasses and rubbed a spot with the corner of his shirt. “Dear, I am tired.”
“Goodbye. I’ll call you guys from Africa every now and then,” I said, before Mrs. L. tried to persuade him again.
“I would love that. Bye, Ida.” Mr. L. bowed his head to me.
Ever since Janelle died, Mr. L. stopped using the word “good”.
“Engen told me that you plan to disappear after high school; he seemed pretty distraught over it.” Mrs. L. looked up from the bottom of her water glass. “I’d like to disappear, too.”
“I know.” Man, it was dark in this house.
“When something horrible happens to a person you love, it changes you.” Her eyes were wide with grief. “You haven’t changed.”“You have no idea what’s going on inside of me.”
“I am perfectly aware of what’s going on inside of you.” Her eyes dropped to my mid-section.
“I wasn’t referring to the baby.” I took a drink of water and thought about how if it wasn’t for her daughter, I wouldn’t be in this pregnancy predicament. I certainly didn’t feel like discussing that with Mrs. L., though.
Mrs. L. stood. She held out the bowl with the half of grapefruit and asked with her eyes if I wanted it, but I shook my head. She brought the bowl to the garbage can and threw away the grapefruit followed by the glass bowl.
About the Author Janet lives in St. Paul, Minnesota with her artist husband, charismatic son, and three neurotic cats. Janet is a lifelong fan of reading and writing stories. NewBeginnings may be her debut novel, but she has several projects in the works. Unlike some of her characters, she has never been to Africa, although she does dream of going one day.
Welcome to the book blitz for FORGOTTEN MAGIC, the first book in the adult paranormal romance series, Crimson Cove, by Eden Butler. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
FORGOTTEN MAGIC (Crimson Cove Series #1) by Eden Butler
But each day, that brooding wizard gave Janiver Benoit a glance.
And when she could not take another quiet stare, or the warmth that look sent over her skin, she took from Bane something he’d never give freely—one lingering, soul knocking kiss.
Ten years later, someone has stolen the one thing that keeps magic hidden from the mortals in Crimson Cove and only Janiver can recover it. But returning to her hometown means she’ll have to face the past and all the secrets she left buried there, including the one person she promised herself she’d never see again. The dangerous wizard that might make leaving Crimson Cove the last thing she wants to do.
*FORGOTTEN MAGIC was previously independently released as CRIMSON COVE. However, Eden has since sold the rights to City Owl Press and the book has been replotted, rewritten, and kicks off the new Crimson Coves trilogy which follows witch Janiver Benoit and her siblings as they try to unravel the well-hidden secrets that have destroyed their family.
WHAT REVIEWERS ARE SAYING:
★★★★★”Butler’s tantalizing fantasy romance, originally self-published as Crimson Cove, burns slow and hot…The magical elements are electric and the chemistry between Bane and Janiver is delicious. Butler builds the tension slowly, carefully pulling story threads to a satisfying but open-ended climax. Readers will be eager to return to Crimson Cove.” – Publishers Weekly
★★★★★ “Eden is a masterful storyteller who takes mere words and turns them into magic.”
★★★★★ “I REALLY LOVED this fresh, innovative, and out of the box concept of a modern romance with a dark, ethereal twist.”
Excerpt 2 “Jani…” he started, following me, coming to his knees despite his bad ankle, crawling so close that I had nowhere to go. “You’ve been keeping something from me. I see it. Even in the damn dark I can see it. It’s everywhere.” Bane moved his warm fingers to my bottom lip and let his thumb glide across my cheekbone. “You refuse to meet my eyes. You avoid me when I stare too long.”
“You always stare too long.”
“I can’t help that.”
He was massive, a sweltering cloud that collected energy, that absorbed emotion so that it became consuming—a vacuous funnel that craved the things it did not need but took what it wanted. That was Bane. He took control, but for the life of me I could not see past letting him take what had always been his.
“Tell me my daydream was invented. That dream of being in the classroom with you.” There was a challenge in his voice that reminded me of us as children, huddled and scared, taunting and fearless. But I wouldn’t answer, couldn’t tell him something that would hurry along his anger. It would be heavy enough when it came.
“Jani,” he said, coming so close that I could smell the sweat from his skin and hear the tiny rasp that caught in his throat.
“You’ll hate me.” It was as close to an explanation as I could offer.
Bane pressed his hand against my cheek, the touch warm and soft but with that small red current still working behind his skin, still flirting with me to cry out that he was mine. “Never, little witch.”
Give and take. He wanted, needed, but didn’t understand why. He didn’t remember, and at that moment, I could not bring myself to remind him. It would hurt too much. But the warmth in his hand, the sweet, honeysuckle scent from his skin weaving like a spell of its own making, intoxicating me, lulling me closer and closer until only Bane—the sound, feel, and smell of him—took up all the space in my head. There was only this man. There was only this moment.
Both belonged to me.
Our mouths came close together, our breaths heated and dampened our faces, our lips—bringing us to the blistering, bated breath before the race begins. A small incline, the minutest stretch of my neck and that mouth, that tongue would belong to me. It was different from the night he spelled me. There was no primeval encouragement from the ley lines egging us on, inching us closer and closer toward our most basic urges. This was more, and somehow with Bane’s face so close to mine, with his fingers tugging on the back of my hair, I knew that one kiss would unhinge me. It would change everything and there would be no stopping us.
“I…this…” My words got stuck somewhere around the back of my throat, clung tight against the hot breath that fanned out when Bane rested his forehead against mine, when he moved his mouth to kiss between my eyebrows.
“This isn’t normal, Jani. This…” He paused, shuddering when that pulsing red light shot across his skin, hovering near his fingertips. “Someone spelled us.”
Blinking, nodding, it was all I could manage. Bane was too strong, the heat in the room too full, the air too thick. Yes, someone had been spelled—him. Someone had done the spelling—me. But really I was a coward, scared of what he’d think, say, damn well do if he found out I’d taken his memories from before. Even if it was for the best, I’d still lied to him—the lie of omission. I’d blocked him and kept for myself something I had no business hiding away.
But Bane seemed content to ignore the past. He seemed mesmerized by the moment, fascinated by the play of reddish light on our skin and that whip of succulent heat that warmed us every time he moved his fingers across my collarbone. “I think I know what this is, Jani, but it makes no sense. Nothing between us, then or now, ever made sense to me.” And it wouldn’t, not to him, not with the understanding I’d taken from him when I blocked his memories. He kept flirting closer to the truth, skating the surface of what that light meant and where he’d seen it before. I couldn’t let him find out, not like that. Not just then.
“Bane,” I said, pulling him closer, loving the low, deep throttle of his voice vibrating when my nails slid up his neck. “You watched over me. Protected me.”
“Did I scare you then?”
“Always,” I said, feeling brave, reckless. I exhaled, staring in his eyes like I wasn’t a coward. “But I loved you for it.”
One swift nod, as though he’d made up some silent decision on his own and Bane picked me up, pulling me closer, his arm around my waist and that busted ankle injury forgotten in his smooth haste to kiss me.
His look was feral and possessive, and even though some loud, loud voice in my head told me to stop him, reminded me that it was my job to stop him, I was powerless against the rush of his mouth against my neck and the greedy hold of his massive hand cupping my hip.
“This isn’t…this won’t lead anywhere…” There was little fight in my protest, my words meant to stop him, only contradicted by how I stretched my neck, giving him greater access to my skin.
“It already has. It started a long time ago.”
“Yes, Jani,” he said, shutting me up with that wide mouth, with the slip of his tongue along my bottom lip. “Every look back then to right now, I was saying the same thing. Every single one.”
My body was electrified, stunted by Bane’s confession, crippled by the light heat collecting around us. If I asked and was disappointed, I’d lose nothing. I had claimed him long ago and had lived with the empty feeling of that for years. If he claimed me now, not remembering a thing and discovered later how badly I’d betrayed him, could I stand the notion that I was his and he no longer wanted me?
Risk and rules. My life existed around both and just for a moment with Bane watching me, with him waiting for permission he didn’t seem familiar with ever having to wait for, I wanted to take something for myself. Just once. “Do I have to ask?”
“No,” he said, his bottom lip twitching as he watched me, “just look a little deeper.”
Author Eden Butler
About the Author Eden Butler is a writer of contemporary, fantasy and romantic suspense novels and the nine-times great-granddaughter of an honest-to-God English pirate. This could explain her affinity for rule breaking and rum.
When she’s not writing or wondering about her possibly Jack Sparrowesque ancestor, Eden patiently waits for her Hogwarts letter, reads, and spends too much time in her garden perfecting her green thumb while waiting for the next New Orleans Saints Superbowl win.
She is currently living under teenage rule alongside her husband in southeast Louisiana.
Author Leslie Scott is revealing the cover to FULL TILT BOOGIE, the third book in her new adult contemporary romance series, Arkadia Fast, releasing July 22, 2020. See below for the cover, information on the book and series, preorder links, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.
FULL TILT BOOGIE (Arkadia Fast Series #3) by Leslie Scott
Synopsis Breanna Casey has only ever wanted two things in life: to race and to get the hell out of Arkadia, Texas. Stifled beneath her family’s turbo-charged reputation, she’s got her thumb firmly on the self-destruct button. A night of hyper-driven racing and rebellion leads to a one night stand with the one guy who knows how to press all her buttons: Noah McKay.
Torn apart by the toll of his high-intensity enlistment in the Marines and guilt-ridden by what he’s seen, Noah McKay left the military to find peace. A chance encounter sends him working for the parents of a raven-haired Amazon goddess with a tongue that cuts sharper than any knife. Quiet is the last thing he’ll get.Finally, she gets her chance.
Calloway Racing wants her to drive for them. But that’s not all they want. A good friend of her father’s, Calloway insists she take Noah along for the ride. Suddenly, her dreams are feeling more like a nightmare. Will they be able to help each other, maybe even find love, when living life full tilt boogie?
About the Author Award nominated author of Two Hearts, One Stone and the Arkadia Fast Series, Leslie Scott has been writing stories for as long as she can remember. The happier the ending, the better. Currently, she lives and writes amidst her own happily ever after with her soul mate, son, and domestic zoo.
Author Bella Di Corte is revealing the cover to MARAUDER, the second book in her adult romantic suspense series, Gangsters of New York, releasing August 7, 2020. See below for the cover, information on the book and series, preorder links, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.
MARAUDER (Gangsters of New York Series #2) by Bella Di Corte
There was one thing I always thought was mine to give: my heart.
I never imagined a marauder would steal it out of vengeance—vengeance that had nothing to do with me. His greatest enemy happened to be the man in love with me, and somehow I became nothing but a pawn. I was no damsel in distress, though. More like an archer, ready to battle.
And my target? The marauder himself.
Cashel “Cash” Kelly.
Kelly might have been as gorgeous as he was ruthless, but he had no idea what I’d do to steal it back. Or better yet, get even.
She was determined to keep what was mine.
They say hearts can’t be stolen unless they’re willing to be. Tell that to the man everyone on the streets called “the marauder.”
Because by the time I was through, Keely Ryan’s heart would be mine. And my enemy’s? As good as broken. Trouble was, the archer was precise with her aim, and her arrow was pointed at my heart.
About the Author Bella Di Corte has been writing romance for seven years, even longer if you count the stories in her head that were never written down, but she didn’t realize how much she enjoyed writing alphas until recently. Tough guys who walk the line between irredeemable and savable, and the strong women who force them to feel, inspire her to keep putting words to the page.
Apart from writing, Bella loves to spend time with her husband, daughter, and family. She also loves to read, listen to music, cook meals that were passed down to her, and take photographs. She mostly takes pictures of her family (when they let her) and her three crazy dogs.
Bella grew up in New Orleans, a place she considers a creative playground.
She loves to connect with readers, so don’t hesitate to email her at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to reach out.
Author B. Austin is revealing the cover to THE WITCH WITH NINE LIVES, the second book in her young adult fantasy series, A Dysfunctional Family of Witches, releasing August 27, 2020. See below for the cover, information on the book and series, pre-order links, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.
THE WITCH WITH NINE LIVES (A Dysfunctional Family of Witches Series #2) by B. Austin
Synopsis Nikki and Medea are half-sisters and the daughters of Dima. Their mother is 130-years-old, but because of a shapeshifting stone, she appears to be 19. She insists her daughters treat her as a sister and not a mother. Dima can live forever, due to the shapeshifting stone.
Medea and Nikki are both 18-years-old, but Medea is no ordinary, young woman. Medea turns into a cat at night, due to her mother’s irreversible curse. Medea is living the first of her nine lives. She, too, will live a long time. Medea has a secret that can destroy the sisterly tie between her and Nikki.
Nikki is beautiful but jealous of her mother and sister because she has no magic and works as a maid, rather than in the family witchcraft business.
Unknown to Nikki and her family, she, too, has a magical gift she cannot yet control, a sorcery that will threaten Medea and pit two powerful sisters against each other.
About the Author B. Austin writes Science Fiction and Fantasy, spellbinding tales filled with suspense, mystery, and unique magic. She loves creating future worlds with cool technology.
B writes under two other names. BELINDA AUSTIN writes Psychological Thrillers, Suspense, and Hysterical Fiction. BELINDA V. GARCIA has written award-winning Historical Fiction and middle-grade fantasy.
Before writing fiction full time, B. Austin was a Computer Programmer, Web Developer, and Software Engineer. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Mathematics. If you are still curious about Belinda, she has written a series of memoirs entitled: MEMOIRS OF A BIGAMIST’S DAUGHTER. She thanks you humbly for your interest.
In her own words: “I would like to have a dinner party on Halloween with all my fans, and Edgar Allan Poe as guest of honor. I fell in love with his writing when I was a kid. We will have chocolate cake, chocolate-covered strawberries, and fudge for dessert. With bated breath, we will ask Eddie the real story of how he died. Everyone loves a good horror tale.”
Belinda invites you to subscribe to her newsletter at her website http://authorBelinda.com under the tab CONNECT. At her website are, also, other social media links.
Welcome to the book blitz for WHY CAN’T FRESHMAN SUMMER BE LIKE PIZZA, the second book in the young adult contemporary series, The Pizza Chronicles, by Andy V. Roamer. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on his giveaway.
WHY CAN’T FRESHMAN SUMMER BE LIKE PIZZA (The Pizza Chronicles #2) by Andy V. Roamer
Synopsis RV, having successfully completed his freshman year at the demanding Boston Latin School, is hoping for a great summer. He’s now fifteen years old and looking forward to sharing many languid summer days with his friend Bobby, who’s told him he has gay feelings too. But life and family and duties for a son of immigrant parents makes it difficult to steal time away with Bobby.
Bobby, too, has pressures. He spends part of the summer away at football camp, and his father pushes him to work a summer job at a friend’s accounting firm. Bobby takes the job grudgingly, wanting to spend any extra time practicing the necessary skills to make Latin’s varsity football team.
On top of everything, RV’s best friend Carole goes away for the summer, jumping at an opportunity to spend it with her father in Paris. Luckily, there is always Mr. Aniso, RV’s Latin teacher, to talk to whenever RV is lonely. He’s also there for RV when he inadvertently spills one of Bobby’s secrets, and Bobby is so angry RV is afraid he is ready to cut off the friendship.
Excerpt #2 After dinner tonight Dad asked me to help him prepare for the test. Yay! He’s finally stopped procrastinating. When I walked into his little study he was flipping through the test-prep booklet. But he didn’t look like he was studying. Instead he was turning the pages haphazardly and frowning. No, scowling is more like it. That’s more powerful than frowning, right? Kind of like frowning to the umpteenth power.
When he saw me he put the book down and started complaining again. About a lot of things. He told me that the immigration process was all a money-making racket. That it showed the country didn’t really want immigrants. That trying to become a citizen the honest way was foolish because there were easier, dishonest ways to do it. That he’d never learn all the questions no matter how hard he tried.
I just stood there not knowing what to say. Dad just can’t help himself, can he? Why does he get into his complaining mode so easily? We get so sick of it. And I knew what he’d say next—that he might just pack his bags and go back to the Old Country.
“Good. Then go!” Mom says when she gets exasperated with him at times like this. Ray and I aren’t brave enough to say anything. Correction. I’m not brave enough to say anything. Ray isn’t afraid. Of course he often gets a good wallop for talking back to Dad, but maybe the pleasure of talking back outweighs any physical pain he feels on his ass.
Dad suddenly stopped talking as if he noticed me for the first time. He took a deep breath, asked me to sit down, and handed me the prep booklet. Good, at least he’s going to try, I said to myself.
He told me to ask him some questions. I found the pages with test questions and we started. I tried to ask Dad easy questions first, to give him a boost. Questions like “Who’s the current President?” and “What’s the ocean on the western side of the United States?”
Dad got those questions right. Progress! But he’s got a long way to go because when we got to the harder questions, he either shook his head or gave the wrong answer. I can see I’ll have my work cut out for me for the rest of the summer. Another little chunk of summer gone. It feels weird, like I’m the parent and Dad is the child. But I do want both Mom and Dad to become citizens, so Dad will stop talking about going back to the Old Country.
Dad was quiet again after he couldn’t answer the harder questions. He was staring off into space, not looking angry anymore. Instead he looked lost. I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to leave and I didn’t. Here was this big guy I’m usually so afraid of looking like a little kid. A lost little kid.
“Ar nori sustoti?” I asked. “Do you want to stop?” I told him we could continue another time.
He looked at me. “Nežinau.” “I don’t know.” He kept staring at me, but he wasn’t really focusing on me. It was as if he was looking through me, focusing on something far way. I asked him again if he wanted to stop.
He ignored my question and shrugged. “Gal šitas kraštas ne man.” “Maybe this country is not for me.” He kept repeating it. “Gal šitas kraštas ne man.”
He stopped and asked me what I had just said. I told him I didn’t say anything. I was just waiting for him to continue. He nodded and told me to ask him some more questions. But I could tell he wasn’t into it, and he kept getting most of the answers wrong.
I don’t know how long we both stayed there going over that dumb booklet. Dad’s thoughts were somewhere far away and we didn’t make much progress.
I finally mumbled something like, “Okay, I’ve got to do things for Mom. We can continue this another time.”
He nodded, still staring out into space. I slunk out of room, glad to leave.
But I was still thinking about Dad. Seeing him so sad got me really upset. I had never seen him like that. I felt bad for him. And for me too. Dad and I would have to work extra hard to pass that test. I’m determined to work as hard as we need to. There is no way I’m going let him take us back to Old Country. I’m still struggling to fit in here in my own country, which is hard enough.
About the Author AndyV. Roamer grew up in the Boston area and moved to New York City after college. He worked in book publishing for many years, starting out in the children’s and YA books division and then wearing many other hats. WHY CAN‘T LIFE BE LIKEPIZZA? is the first novel in THE PIZZA CHRONICLES. The books follow the exploits of RV, the teenage son of immigrants from Lithuania in Eastern Europe, as RV tries to negotiate the four years of his demanding high school, his budding sexuality, and new relationships. To relax, Andy loves to ride his bike, read, watch foreign and independent movies, and travel..
Welcome to the book blitz for KISMET, the first book in the adult romantic suspense series, Birch County Blue, by USA Today bestselling author, April Canavan. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
KISMET (Birch County Blue Series #1) by April Canavan
In the dark of the night, 911 dispatcher Maya Daniels becomes the one thing she fears the most, a victim. Faced with new limitations, both physically and emotionally are what prove the hardest for Maya to handle. That and one very stubborn deputy who refuses to take no for an answer.
Brian will never forgive himself for the pain Maya went through when he couldn’t protect her. When he’s given one more chance to make things right, he swears that he’ll do anything to keep her safe. Even if it means he could lose his job as a Deputy Sheriff.
Nobody believes that Maya is safe, especially when her stalker returns with a vengeance. Maya finds herself fighting for her life once more, but this time she’s not alone.
Fans of Mary Burton and Susan Stoker will fall into the world of Birch County and never want to come back.
Excerpt #3 “If you tell a woman even one time that she isn’t what you want, or reject her for someone else, she is never going to forget it, Brian. No matter how many times you tell her afterwards that she is the most important person in the world, she is going to be taken back to the moment you crushed her existence. And it’s up to you to make that right.” Brian stared at his dad, unsure of what he should say. He hadn’t even brought up Maya at all. He couldn’t be talking about Ashley, both his parents had hated her.
Trying to convince himself more than his father, Brian said, “Dad, I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“Of course you do.” And he didn’t have to say anything else about the situation.
They sat on the porch, looking out into the woods in silence while they reflected on their lives and relationships. Brian’s mom and dad had been married for over thirty years, but they also fought like cats and dogs most of the time.
“You know, there are times that your mother won’t let me forget about. But I’ll tell you what, son. Making up for those times has led to some of the best moments in my entire life. I owe her so much, just for turning me into the man I am today.”
“I know dad, you’ve told me before.” Growing up, Brian had been taught the importance of respecting women and behaving in a way that would reflect well on his parents. “I’m gonna go give mom her hug before I have to leave. I’m working tonight. Are you sure it’s okay for the boys to sleep over tonight?” As he mentioned them, they both came running into the backyard followed by a golden retriever. The dog had been here forever, it seemed, and was at least fifteen years old. His mom had named him Greg so that he felt like a real part of the family.
“Yeah of course, they give Greg a run for his money.” His dad chuckled at the sight of Greg chasing the boys around the yard.
“Okay. Thanks Dad.” And he turned and walked into the kitchen where his mom was spending her day.
He watched her for a few minutes before he walked into her line of sight. She was mumbling to herself about dinner and trying to decide what the boys would like most. In that moment he understood that the house they stood in wasn’t home. His mother and father were what made it home. They were the real home, the people who he loved and wanted to share his life with.
“Have I ever told you the story about your father falling in love with my best friend and picking her over me when we were younger?” His mother, Janet, interrupted his thoughts.
“Seriously mom, you too? Dad already gave me this speech.”
His mother was aging, but still beautiful. She had brown eyes set against pale skin and dark hair. She had the same laugh lines that his dad had but was barely taller than five feet. Their years had been spent growing together, fighting each other and laughing at the same jokes, smiling at the same stories, and creating an entire world that no one else was part of. His parents had been best friends while he was growing up, but Brian had known that there were troubles before he was born.
“Just sit down and listen to me.” He did as he was told, planting his ass on a barstool while she puttered around the kitchen pulling out the ingredients for dinner and desert for the night. Her voice was sweet and melodic, lilting as though she were about to start singing. He had loved that voice growing up.
“When I was fifteen your daddy had just turned sixteen. I thought the world hung in his eyes, you know. Well I hadn’t really started to show my charms yet,” she winked at him and he knew she was talking about the features of her female body.
“My best friend though, Sheri, she had. The boys went crazy about her and your father was no different. He was the best looking boy in town, you know. Well Sheri knew how I felt about him, and she went after him still. She had him wrapped around her little finger for a year. I was heartbroken, swore I’d never love anyone else. You know how teenagers are. The summer I turned sixteen though, everything started changing.
“Your daddy was slow to realize that all she had to offer was the space between her legs. When he did, I wasn’t there. I spent the summer with my aunt and uncle in Boston, and when I got home everything had changed. Sheri was sent away to boarding school for getting caught with Jimmy Parsons behind the church. Ryan had finally grown into enough of a man to admit that he had made the wrong choice.” Brian was a little startled by his mom using his father’s name. She very rarely did it. “The first time I saw him after that trip; he looked at me and never looked away.”
“That’s sweet ma, but I don’t know how that applies to me.” And yet, he could feel the pull of familiarity, the idea that she was talking about his life by example.
“You don’t see it?” His mama was never one to mince words, “You wasted how many years with Ashley, when you should have taken one look at that little Hispanic girl and never looked away.”
“Ma, they aren’t the same thing at all.” Brian knew that his mom was trying to make comparisons between the two situations, but he couldn’t get there.
“Listen, Brian. I love you,” she said. “But if you don’t see the lines you should take a step back. Let her heal and then worry about making a connection with her.” He knew that it hurt her to say it, but she wouldn’t hold back.
Author April Canavan
About the Author USA Today bestselling author by day and superhero by night, April spends her time split between real and fantasy worlds. While she writes across genres, her heart lives with Contemporary Romance that will tear her readers apart.
She lives on the rocky coast of Maine, in the perfect place to visit the ocean but still live surrounded by the woods. Her son inspires her to write, demanding stories that he’s not allowed to read.
As long as she has coffee, April can conquer the world… but she hates talking about herself in third person.
Author Giulia Lagomarsino is revealing the cover to PARKER, the 25th book in her adult contemporary romance/romantic suspense series, Reed Security, releasing July 3, 2020. See below for the cover, information on the book, pre-order links, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.
PARKER (Reed Security Series #25) by Giulia Lagomarsino
I’ve been disgraced. I have nothing left to my name after being dishonorably discharged from the military. But I was falsely accused. It doesn’t matter though. It would take a Presidential pardon for me to get my life back, and I don’t see that happening anytime soon. But then Knight walked into my life and offered me a chance at redemption. I don’t want to believe that it could be true, but I’m ready to go along for the ride and see what happens. That’s how I met her. She threw me through a window, but that won’t stop me from seeing her again.
You know that phrase ‘I’ve gotten myself into a pickle’? Well, this is a huge pickle. I thought I knew what I was doing when I ran, but this is so much more involved than I ever imagined. I didn’t think someone else would show up at the senator’s house where I was digging up information. I also didn’t expect him to be so hot or to follow me. And I really didn’t expect him to attack me. But I know how to defend myself, so I’m not too worried about it. Now I just have to stay hidden until I can figure out what’s going on. But nothing in my life seems to be going as planned lately. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised when he shows up yet again.
Author Giulia Lagomarsino
About the Author I’m a stay at home mom that loves to read. Some of my favorite titles are Pride and Prejudice, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and Horatio Hornblower. I started writing when I was trying to come up with suggestions on ways I could help bring in some extra money. I came up with the idea that I could donate plasma because you could earn an extra $500/month. My husband responded with, “No. Find something else. Write a blog. Write a book.” I didn’t think I had anything to share on blog that a thousand other mothers hadn’t already thought of. I decided to take his challenge seriously and sat down to write my first book, Jack. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed writing. From there, the stories continued to flow and I haven’t been able to stop. I hope my readers enjoy my books as much as I enjoy writing them. Between reading, writing, and taking care of three small kids, my days are quite full.
Today is release day for POWER SURGE, the fourth book in the adult romantic suspense/political romance series, PowerPlay, by Kennedy L. Mitchell. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.
POWER SURGE (Power Play Series #4) by Kennedy L. Mitchell
Everything has changed, and not for the better. The not-so-perfect life I had as VP is gone, along with the team that’s been by my side each step of my political journey. Every move I make, every breath and thought, now affects millions, and the weight wears me down without Trey as a welcomed distraction.
They tell me war is coming, and I’m the one who has to stop it. But how is the question no one can answer. Past enemies lurk in the shadows while new ones hide in plain sight, stalking, watching, and waiting for the right moment to take me out. I need Trey back. I need them all by my side and ready to fight for me.
Can I undo the mess that my predecessor left in his wake, or will I break under the burden to save the world?
No pressure, right?
Power Surge is the fourth book in the five-book Power Play series and is a continuation of Randi and Trey’s epic love story. The books in this series cannot be read as standalones. All five books follow one main couple’s relationship as it grows through a five-year time period. It’s suspenseful, steamy, and oh so unputdownable. If you’re a fan of Tiffany Snow, Meghan March, and Skye Warren, then this series is for YOU!
About the Author Kennedy lives in Dallas with her husband, son, and 80lb Goldendoodle who still believes he’s a lap dog. A bookworm at heart, Kennedy loves to snuggle up in bed or by the campfire with an unputdownable book. She began writing two years ago with Falling for the Chance and has no plans of stopping. Her novels are witty, action-packed, and offer enough steam for a great facial. If you like strong heroines and sexy, tattooed men who can’t keep their hands off them, then this author is the one for you.
Welcome to the book blitz for THE DREAM, the fourth book in the adult contemporary romantic comedy series, Creek Water, by Whitney Dineen. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
THE DREAM (Creek Water Series #4) by Whitney Dineen
Synopsis Ashley has loved the same boy since high school. She knew Davis Frothingham was special even before he championed her at her senior prom. She also knew he was completely out of her league.
Years later, her attraction for him is still there, but Davis? He doesn’t even remember her.
When Ashley is tasked with being the nurse for Davis’ terminally ill grandmother, she’s thrown back into his world. More than anything, she wants him to remember her, but that recollection could come at a price of its own.
Can Ashley accept that she’s good enough for Davis? And can Davis learn to love a girl from the wrong side of the tracks?
Find out in this delightfully fun romcom about love and life in Creek Water, Missouri!
Excerpt #3 Memories of our senior prom nearly overwhelm me as Buck and I drive to the country club. It’s like I’ve fallen into a hole in the space/time continuum and am watching the past in real time on a movie screen in my brain.
Right after Buck’s near-death experience during dinner, I turn to him and say, “Look, Buck, we’re not exactly a love connection. I know my mom and Sammy roped you into this whole thing and you probably had no intention of ever going, but I think we should dance at least once. That way when we’re adults and have finally overcome the humiliation of our teenage years, we can tell our kids we weren’t total losers. What do you think?”
He reluctantly stands up. “I guess, when you put it that way. Far be it from me to be a total loser.” He offers me his hand. “Let’s do this.”
“We owe it to future generations.”
“For our children,” he says before turning beet red and mumbling, “Not our children together, I mean my children and your children … with other people.”
“Relax, Buck. I know what you meant.” We walk to the dance floor side-by-side and find an open spot near the middle of a throng of our sparkly dressed peers. The song ends so we stand facing each other while we wait for the next one to come on. Three weeks later, or so it seems, the beginning strains of a golden oldie blast through the speakers. “Love of the Common People,” from the Sixteen Candles soundtrack. I wonder if it’s an omen that maybe I shouldn’t give up on my dreams.
Buck lets out a cynical sounding laugh. “More like survival of the common people, huh?”
“We’re not common, Buck,” I tell him. “We’re not so lucky. We’re two very uncommon people spending their adolescence in a high school where we don’t fit in, living three trailers away from each other in a small-town trailer park in Missouri.”
“We’re smart,” he says. “Which is a lot more than most of these goons have going for them. I’d rather be uncommon with options than destined for mediocrity.”
I look up at my date and really consider him before agreeing. “I like how you think. Why is it we’ve never talked before?”
He arches an eyebrow in question. “Really? Seems to me the answer is obvious. We’re both afraid of being the target of any more negative attention.”
“Ouch,” I reply.
Buck shrugs as if saying, just because the truth hurts, doesn’t mean it’s not the truth.
My date turns out to be a good dancer which he attributes to his grandmother’s obsession with the television show Dancing with the Stars. “She makes me practice the steps with her,” he confesses.
“I haven’t the words to describe how shocking I find that,” I joke.
“Yeah, well, tell anyone and I’ll deny it.”
“I’m pretty sure Janine and Melody wouldn’t care. In fact, they’d probably think it was sweet.”
He gives me a little spin to showcase his moves. Luckily, I somehow manage to retain my footing and don’t trip. Suddenly, he asks, “You like Davis Frothingham, right?”
“Why would you think that?” I practically choke on the words. Have I got no game at all?
“I hate to be the one to tell you, but I’m pretty sure everyone knows. You stare at the guy a lot.”
I want to curl up in a ball of embarrassment and die. “Really?” I squeak, hoping he’ll lie to me and tell me he was just kidding.
No such luck. “I’ll let you in on a secret.”
“What could possibly be as embarrassing as the fact that I’m pining for a guy so far out of my league we might as well be playing ball on different planets?”
“How about this?” he asks before divulging, “I’ve had a crush on Jessica Holt since we were in kindergarten.”
Disgust must be etched across my face because he hurries to add, “I know she’s never going to think I’m anything but a slug beneath her feet, but I can’t help myself.”
“Did you ever consider the whole vampire-look might be working against you?” I venture to ask.
He stares behind me transfixed by something or someone. “I’m not much to look at without it. I figured being different would at least make me less invisible.”
I totally feel his pain. I’d wear a paper bag over my head to school if it meant people wouldn’t notice me and stop referring to me by the horrendous nickname Chad Adkinson stuck me with on my first day at Creek Water High.
“We should enlist Sammy’s help,” I tell him. “She took some hair courses at beauty school before deciding to focus on nails. I bet she could help you mainstream your look so people would notice you in a good way.”
“I guess it couldn’t hurt.” Then he spins me around so I can see what he was just looking at.
Davis and Jessica are dancing right next to us. They’re like Cinderella and Prince Charming. Davis catches my eye before offering a knee-buckling smile.
Jessica must sense his focus isn’t solely on her because she maneuvers him around so she’s facing me. She flips me the bird and sticks out her tongue like we’re still in grade school or something.
“How in the world can you like her?” I ask Buck. “She’s a total viper.”
“She was the prettiest and sweetest girl in grade school. She gave me a valentine in third grade that said she thought I was cute.” After a pause, he reluctantly confesses, “I still have it.”
Poor Buck. He’s as hopeless as I am. I’m pretty sure nothing is ever going to come from our love for the most popular couple at school, but at least we found each other. If nothing else, I’ve come out of tonight with a new friend, and lord knows, I need as many of those as I can get.
About the Author Whitney loves to laugh, play with her kids, bake, and eat french fries — not always in that order. Whitney is a multi-award-winning author of romcoms, non-fiction humor, and middle reader fiction. Basically, she writes whatever the voices in her head tell her to. She lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her husband, Jimmy, where they raise children, chickens, and organic vegetables.
Gold Medal winner at the International Readers’ Favorite Awards, 2017.
Silver medal winner at the International Readers’ Favorite Awards, 2015, 2016.
Finalist RONE Awards, 2016.
Finalist at the IRFA 2016, 2017.
Finalist at the Book Excellence Awards, 2017
Finalist Top Shelf Indie Book Awards, 2017
Author Maggie Mae Gallagher is revealing the cover to THE PROMISE KEPT, the second book in her adult contemporary romance series, Echo Springs, releasing August 19, 2020. See below for the cover, information on the book and series, and preorder links.
THE PROMISE KEPT (Echo Springs Series #2) by Maggie Mae Gallagher
Synopsis Cybil Roe gave her heart away thirteen years ago only to have it wind up shattered. With painstaking determination, she has rebuilt her life into something to be proud of today. Yet all her future plans are upended when the only man she has ever loved returns to Echo Springs. Nor does it help that he seems bound and determined to draw her back into his life. Cybil vows to stay away from him, no matter what seeing him all the time does to her resolve.
Miles Keaton wiped the dust of his hometown off his shoes years ago, never expecting that life would lead him back to the place where he had begun. Coming home to Echo Springs, to Cybil, to start a new law practice and a new life is a risk he never thought he’d take. She hates him – with good reason. Years ago, he walked away when she needed him the most. But now is he back, and intends to argue the case of his life, one more important than any he has debated in a courtroom, because she is the one woman he cannot live without.
Can Miles convince Cybil to take a second chance on him, or will a secret she has kept all these years destroy any future they might have?
About the Author Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Maggie grew up listening to Cardinals baseball and reading anything she could get her hands on. She remembers her mother saying if only she would read the right type of books instead binging her way through the romance aisles at the bookstore, she’d have been a doctor. While Maggie never did get that doctorate, she graduated cum laude from the University of Missouri-St. Louis with an M.A. in History.
Maggie is a bestselling and award-winning author published in multiple fiction genres. She also writes erotic romance under the name Anya Summers. A total geek at her core, when she is not writing, she adores attending the latest comic con or spending time with her family. She currently lives in the Midwest with her two furry felines.
INtense Publications and author Alicia J. Novo are revealing the cover to UNWRITTEN, the first book in the young adult fantasy series, The Zweeshen Chronicles, releasing November 14, 2020. See below for the cover, information on the book, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.
UNWRITTEN (The Zweeshen Chronicles #1) by Alicia J. Novo
About the Book Title: UNWRITTEN Series: The Sweeshen Chronicles #Z Author: Alicia J. Novo Publisher: INtense Publications Release Date: November 14, 2020 Genre: Young Adult Fantasy Links:Goodreads
Synopsis Books whisper to Beatrix Alba. But they aren’t the reason she has never fit in. Bullied at home and school, she keeps a secret—a power of violence and darkness.
When the spell that keeps her hidden fails, she’s catapulted into the Zweeshen, a realm where all tales live, and her dream of meeting her favorite characters comes true. But wishes are tricky, and behind its wonder and whimsy, the Zweeshen is under attack. A character is burning bookworlds in pursuit of a weapon to rule both stories and storytellers. To succeed, he needs a riddle in Beatrix’s possession.
Now he’s hunting her down.
Joining forces with William, a cursed conjurer, Beatrix must face an enemy who knows her every weakness in a realm where witches play with time, Egyptian gods roam, and Regency heroines lead covert operations. And with her darkness as the only weapon, she may have to sacrifice everything to save a world that rejects her.
Author Alicia J. Novo
About the Author Alicia has a weak spot for happy endings and transformative journeys. She spent her teenage years in Argentina and Europe, speaks several languages and loves to travel.
An eclectic reader, she grew up on a diet ranging from Lucy M. Montgomery and Jane Austen to Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, Raymond Chandler, Hermann Hesse, Jorge Luis Borges, and many classics. She’s never been cured of reading a bit of everything and is as likely to geek out about Mr. Darcy as Dr. Who.
She is a history and astronomy aficionado, who walked the Camino de Santiago in Spain, completed her Masters in the Netherlands and worked for Google in Ireland. She decided to become a writer at six but took a full, winding road here. Along the way, she learned if there’s one thing that cuts across cultures, one unifying thread that pulls everyone together, it’s a good story
A big-city girl, she now lives in the Midwest, where she occasionally picks apples and pretends witches exist..
Welcome to the book blitz for TASTE MY WRATH, the first book in the adult urban fantasy romance series, The Iron Fae, by USA Today bestselling author, Debbie Cassidy. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
TASTE MY WRATH (The Iron Fae Series $1) by Debbie Cassidy
Synopsis A dead earth, a handful of survivors, and a game that could wipe out humanity.
I was one of the few humans to be saved by the shining ones. Powerful beings who came from the stars just in time to stop the annihilation of mankind. But they’ve been here before.
Earth was once their home and humanity has another name for them. Fae.
Now we live in iron cities paying for haven as workers and conscripted warriors. We owe them after all. Until they ask too much.
The Regency Tournament is about to begin. A test of prowess for the shining ones to determine which House will rule their people for the next century.
And we humans? We’re the prey.
But I didn’t survive earths almost destruction to be hunted like a beast.
If I’m going to go down, then I’ll be taking these pointy eared wankers with me.
And I have an advantage. A shadow companion—protective but tough. My mentor has trained me in the art of survival. With his smooth dulcet tones in my head, and his shadowy form at my back, I’ll no longer be prey.
And when I hunt the shining ones, they won’t even see me coming.
An Urban Fantasy Romance adventure. Experience the magic of the Fae set against a Post-Apocalyptic back drop in a dystopian world.
Author Debbie Cassidy
About the Author Debbie Cassidy lives in England, Bedfordshire, with her three kids and very supportive husband. Coffee and chocolate biscuits are her writing fuels of choice, and she is still working on getting that perfect tower of solitude built in her back garden. Obsessed with building new worlds and reading about them, she spends her spare time daydreaming and conversing with the characters in her head – in a totally non psychotic way of course. She writes Urban Fantasy, Fantasy and Reverse Harem Fantasy. All her books contain plenty of action, romance and twisty plots.
Rosewind Books and author Alexandrea Weis are revealing the cover to THE CHRISTMAS SPIRIT, a stand-alone adult contemporary holiday romance, releasing October 27, 2020. See below for the cover, information on the book and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.
THE CHRISTMAS SPIRIT by Alexandrea Weis
About the Book Title: THE CHRISTMAS SPIRIT Author: Alexandrea Weis Publisher: Rosewind Books Release Date: October 27, 2020 Genre: Adult Contemporary Holiday Romance Links:Goodreads
Synopsis SOMETIMES IT TAKES ONE BROKEN HEART TO HEAL ANOTHER.
Courtney Winston is a writer on a deadline. Eager to finish her book and get over a recent break-up, she ditches Christmas with her family and retreats to a secluded cabin in the mountains.
Appliances rarely work, and cell service is spotty, but Courtney senses there is more to her rustic rental—something dark and haunting.
Then Peter, the attractive Stone Mountain Lodge owner, and a meddling cook, Mrs. Finn, keep coming around, shattering her peace and offering advice on how to fix her heavy heart.
Courtney grows closer to Peter, but Mrs. Finn warns her of his troubled past. Undaunted, Courtney sets out to win him over. But being with the brooding stranger may end up costing her more than she ever imagined.
Author Alexandrea Weis
About the Author Alexandrea Weis, RN-CS, PhD, is a multi-award-winning author, screenwriter, advanced practice registered nurse, and historian who was born and raised in the French Quarter of New Orleans. Having grown up in the motion picture industry as the daughter of a director, she learned to tell stories from a different perspective. Infusing the rich tapestry of her hometown into her novels, she believes that creating vivid characters makes a story moving and memorable.
Weis writes romance, mystery, suspense, thrillers, supernatural, and young adult fiction and has sold approximately one million books. She lives with her husband and pets in New Orleans where she is a permitted/certified wildlife rehabber with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries and rescues orphaned and injured animals.
She is a member of both the International Thriller Writers Association and the Horror Writers Association. www.AlexandreaWeis.com..
Welcome to the book blitz for OUT OF MY LEAGUE, a stand-alone young adult contemporary fake-relationship romance, by Sarah Sutton. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
Synopsis It’s all fun and games until someone catches feelings.
Sophia Wallace is convinced her life is over when her high school cuts the journalism program. Without the elective, she loses her chance to intern with the biggest newspaper company in the county, and why? All because the baseball team needs more funding.
To make matters worse, her boyfriend publicly dumps her at a party, which is mortifying. But the icing on the cake is when the captain of the baseball team and the most popular guy at Bayview High, Walsh Hunter, decides to be chivalrous. He jumps in, throws his arm around Sophia, and declares his undying love for her. In front of everyone.
Suddenly, Sophia is thrown into a world of fake relationships and undercover journalism, and she realizes she’s way, way out of her league.
Good thing she’s got the team captain to teach her how to play.
But faced with choosing between saving her journalism class or her newfound feelings for Walsh, will she strike out or hit a home run?
Excerpt #2 Time passed as I stood at the door, enough for all thoughts of Scott to be scattered from my mind. So I jumped again when yet another knock came, lunging for the handle, ready to shout. “I swear, I will call the—”
But it wasn’t Scott.
Walsh stood on the other side of the door with his blond eyebrows high up on his forehead. “Nice to see you, too?”
“What are you doing here?” I was ten kinds of disoriented, staring at his figure standing against the fading sky. Did I conjure him from my thoughts? “Why aren’t you at the bay? Aren’t the fireworks starting soon?”
“I didn’t go,” he told me, slipping his hands into the pockets of his shorts.
“What? What do you mean you didn’t go? Where have you been for the past few hours, then?”
Walsh reached a hand out to me, palm up. “I can show you.”
As enticing as his words were, I hesitated, glancing at the picture on the wall as if somehow my parents could see me through it. “I can’t leave the house.”
“Your house,” he said, eyes vivid with energy, “or your yard?”
Walsh grabbed my hand and led me out onto my front porch, then down the two steps. “Close your eyes,” he commanded, his other hand coming around to my other shoulder to guide me. “I promise I won’t let you trip over anything.”
“Shh. Just say ‘yes, Walsh’ and close your eyes.”
I gritted my teeth but relented, swaying as my vision filled with black. “I hate surprises.”
Walsh pressed firmer against my side, his chest touching my shoulder, a smile in his voice. “I think you’ll like this one.”
Grass crunched beneath my bare toes as he moved me along, but I remained a good sport and kept my eyes sealed. Though it was silly, my heart started to beat faster, the anticipation making me nervous. His hands that curved over my shoulders were gentle, the pressure steady, his body close enough behind me that I could practically feel his proximity.
“Relax,” Walsh said, guiding me to a halt. “Your shoulders are so tense. I’m not about to kill you and stuff you in my trunk.”
“Your trunk’s huge. You seriously think you’d have to stuff me into it?”
Walsh was close enough that I could feel him chuckle.
“Can I open my eyes now?”
Walsh hesitated for a moment before he let go entirely. “Yes.”
Author Sarah Sutton
About the Author Sarah Sutton is a YA Romance author, bringing you stories about teenagers falling in love (sometimes with magic)She spends her days dreaming up ideas with her two adorable puppies by her side being cheerleaders (and mega distractions).
Welcome to the blog tour for TAKING HER CHASE, the second book in the adult contemporary romance/romantic suspense, small town enemies-to-lovers series, Dare to Surrender, by Danielle Pays. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
TAKING HER CHASE (Dare to Surrender Series #2) by Danielle Pays
Synopsis He’s in love with his best friend. She’s dating his number one suspect. What could go wrong?
Harmony Brose can’t stop fantasizing about her best friend. After a few drinks, she took a risk. She asked Chase to kiss her. It was the best kiss of her life. Until he jumped up and left, breaking her heart.
Officer Chase Harvey had thought about kissing Harmony for years but never crossed that line until that night. Fearing Harmony was drunk, he had to cut it off until he was sure she truly wanted him. Apparently she didn’t, because Harmony just started dating the new man in town.
Chase doesn’t have time to waste on regrets. A woman vanished from their small town and he’ll do whatever is necessary to solve the case. When evidence points to the new man, Chase must follow the lead. It has nothing at all to do with the fact the man is dating Harmony…
Now he has to decide. Is he willing to risk losing the woman he loves in order to protect her?
Excerpt #1 They each drank another shot, and whatever Harmony had been mad about seemed to fade away. Then Chase noticed that her skirt was riding high up on her thighs as she sat next to him. He was about to pry his eyes away when a drop of her drink fell right onto her bare skin.
“Oops.” Harmony smiled at him.
What happened next, he could only blame on a combination of the shots and sitting too close to her. He reached down and wiped the drop away with his finger, then brought it to his mouth. When his gaze met hers, her eyes had darkened.
Shit. What was he doing?
“Didn’t want to waste any,” he said as he averted his gaze.
What the fuck? That was the best he could come up with?
Zach turned on some music, and Harmony asked Chase to stand up so she could get out of the booth. At this point, he’d do anything to get her focus away from what he’d just done. Once she was up, he sat back down. Mistake. Her hips were following the rhythm. Right in front of his face. He tried not to watch, but it was impossible.
“Let’s dance!” Harmony grabbed his hand and led him out to the dance floor.
Her body moved in ways he wasn’t used to seeing. When she turned away from him and shimmied closer, he backed up a step. The smile on her face as she glanced back at him was full of mischief. “This isn’t middle school, Harvey. You can touch me.”
Harvey. The name never sounded right coming from her. After entering the police academy, he’d asked everyone to call him by his last name. Even Harmony had finally obliged.
She inched back again and placed his hands on her hips. When her backside grazed against his crotch, his fingers dug deeper into her flesh. He needed to think about something else before his friend discovered she was making him hard as hell.
Swamps, alligators, baseball.
It was working. Then she spun, tossed her arms around his neck, and pressed her body up against his.
About the Author Danielle Pays writes steamy romance novels with a touch of suspense. When not trying to write her characters into some kind of trouble, she can be found guzzling coffee at her kids’ soccer games. Black coffee is a requirement as she lives in the Pacific Northwest.
Synopsis Deep in the Appalachian Mountains, a brilliant scientist and his daughter retreat from a catastrophic global plague. Worried for Molly’s future, James crafts the ultimate gift for his lonely little girl: A sentient AI charged with the task of protecting her and keeping her company in the event he is no longer able to do so. His creation, Will, is bestowed with an expansive intellect, superhuman strength, and a fierce protective streak. However, as year go by, Will’s feelings start to change from duty and service to something more.
At eighteen, Molly knows little of the world beyond a collection of grainy VHS classics. Life with Will and James is idyllic. But Will’s mission to protect involves keeping dangerous secrets, including some that could destroy the trust between them forever. Will struggles with the rigid self-discipline of his programming, versus turbulent, irrational feelings that grow stronger each day. True love can’t exist without honesty and risk; the two things Will has been programmed to control at all costs. But trouble is brewing outside their sheltered utopia, and ignorance might be a luxury neither of them can afford any longer.
From the primitive heights of the Appalachian Mountains to the revolutionary scientific breakthrough hidden within, Adamantine, a story of love, sacrifice, and sentience is scheduled to be released in June 2020.
Excerpt Fatigue lines circled James Walkers eyes and forehead; dry canals of wrinkled flesh ran down the sides of his face. A flood of light washed over him, flickering ever so often. He found himself hissing at that inconvenience before resuming his examination. James spent months inspecting every piece of hardware and taking voice notes—he was ready to proceed.
“James Walker, Ph.D.,” he said into the recorder. “After meticulous examination that produced minor wins and fails, everything seems to be in order. The mechanism is responsive. I’m proceeding to the next step—implementation. Cooling systems have taken to the previous modifications, refer to doc-234. Internal examinations will continue intermittently.”
James clicked off the recorder and sighed. He walked across the room and paused inches from his destination, letting his eyes scan the table and its contents. The thin, silicone-based polymer suit reflected the soft light in the room. The project was close to completion and when he thought of what was at stake, the usual litany of questions and doubts arose. He scratched his stubble and pushed aside thoughts of consequence. He knew all too well that one wrong move might bring down his research like a flimsy deck of cards.
“Positivity doesn’t exist in the realm of fringe science, but you have to try,” he muttered under his breath. Those words fueled James, who focused on the most favorable outcome.
The augmented bio-hybrid suit had muscles, tendons, and ligaments designed to replicate the human body—an exact replica. He rolled the table close to the gurney then proceeded to couple the parts together. It took thirty minutes of concentrated effort to get the body sheathed. James took a step back and admired his masterpiece. It reminded him of a Renaissance anatomical painting he once saw in a museum. A smile tugged at the corner of his lips, but he wiped it away with the back of his hand. He attached a transfusion tube to the small glass cylinder filled with dense liquid. He injected the mixture into the body’s cervical vertebrae. Spider-like microscopic nanocells hurried down the spine and spread into the hybrid suit. The muscle tissues expanded and solidified over the impenetrable frame underneath.
James watched the process unfold. His heart beat in double time, eager to move to the next phase. The pulsating vibe in his ears synced with his anxiety. He ambled to a wall lined with metal cabinets and retrieved the synthetic skin from its compartment. At the table, he arranged them over the entire body like a giant jigsaw puzzle. He watched the panels of skin adhere to one another. His hands imprisoned within his pockets to resist the urge to touch. Soon, skin covered the mechanical suit and a man lay in its place. The transformation was a success.
Exhausted, James glanced at his watch and wondered if he should call it a night or continue to the next phase. Logic advised against that course of action, but the restless inventor needed to proceed. A tremor ran through his hand, a reminder of the imminent situation he was in. Time was no longer a commodity he could afford.
He shook off the reverie and began the final phase. He flipped a switch and waited.
James didn’t expect movement, so when the eyes fluttered, he was startled. Rapid eye movement meant the system transmitted the packets of data through a private server James created, which allowed limited access to a vast global network.
“William? Can you hear me?” James whispered. He moved closer to the table and repeated the question. The eyes continued to flutter for a moment, then flew open. Gracefully, the body sat up and surveyed the room. It—he—was trying to assess its surroundings.
“How do you feel?” James asked tentatively.
“William? Is that my name?” His deep voice resonated throughout the room. His eyes stopped on the bespectacled man in a dark green, cable knit sweater, who stood next to the table. He looked to be in his fifties with tired blue eyes and short, graying, brown hair.
“Yes. Your name is William. And my name is James. I am your creator.”
The AI tilted his head to the side. His dark brown eyes rose to meet James’. “You’re ill. You ha—”
“I-I know,” James interrupted. “Do you know what you are?”
Will held up his hands and flexed the digits. “Am I awake, or am I programmed to feel awake?”
James smiled and sat in a chair near the wall. Excitement welled up inside him. “The fact you even ask that question gives me hope that you are exactly what you’re meant to be.”
“I’m not human,” Will stated.
“No, you’re far more advanced. I was able to correlate specific patterns of the central nervous system with emotions and thought processes to create something beyond a program—an organism. You are the first AI ever to have this organism installed.”
They held each other’s gaze for a moment before James broke contact and continued.
“This evolutionary system will gradually alter and determine your choices based on the human interaction you experience throughout your life, much like a regular person. Over time—I’m not sure how long—but over time, you will start to engage in a more human-like behavior. You will continue to write code as a sentient being.”
Will canted his head and blinked rapidly. “I’ll be able to freely write my own code?”
“To a degree. There are restrictions, uh, goal-oriented programs. More specifically, there is a source code which will prevent you from accessing data that can alter or corrupt your program. Once certain milestones are crossed, you will have the ability to act upon your own thoughts and emotions.” James looked at Will and let out a deep sigh. The expunged breath formed a visible cloud over his face before it dissipated. “For the time being, I need you to remain here in the lab until I’m certain your program is fully functional and is safe enough.”
“Safe enough for what?” William asked.
James didn’t answer.
Author Rosie Weir
About the Author Rosie Weir is an authoress by passion and now profession. She penned her first story at the age of 10 and has been writing ever since. Obsessed with science fiction, horror, and sometimes dark historical romances, her writing repertoire is wide-ranging and wildly diverse. On a quest to tell unconventional stories, human behavior and humanness are at the heart of all her literary works; stories that inspire readers to rethink and reshape their perspectives. When she’s not busy writing, she’s baking and chasing after a tiny, and rambunctious human.
Her debut novel, Adamantine, is scheduled to be released in June 2020 with The Champagne Book Group..
Today is release day for TRAP ‘N’ TRACE, the the fourth book in the adult contemporary romantic suspense series, Federal K-9, by Tee O’Fallon. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.
TRAP ‘N’ TRACE (Federal K-9 Series #4) by Tee O’Fallon
For wealthy socialite Katrina Vandenburg, business meetings and charity galas are all part of her orderly, structured world—one that gets blown to hell after finding two dead bodies in the same day. The police think she was in the wrong place at the wrong time. FBI Special Agent Dayne Andrews thinks otherwise. Dayne and his K-9 Remy are tracking a cold-blooded killer, and that trail…leads straight to Kat.
Kat and her rescue shelter—the Canine Haven—are the only common denominators between the murders, and Dayne is convinced she’s dead center in the killer’s sights. Protecting her will test every ounce of his steely resolve. She’s the most intriguing woman he’s ever met. And everything he shouldn’t want. Too bad neither of them seem to have gotten the memo.
And they need to focus on catching a killer now more than ever. Because if Dayne and Remy fail in their mission, nothing will stand between Kat and the killer’s deadly blade.
Excerpt High heels clicked as Kat glided down the stairs into the foyer, looking so regal and so incredibly beautiful Dayne was struck utterly dumb. For the last four days, he’d tried not to think about kissing her again. Since then, they’d avoided each other as much as possible and barely spoken. Now he couldn’t talk even if he wanted to.
Her rich chestnut hair was pulled back into a cluster of curls, and as she turned to greet his friends, the glittery clip in her hair shimmered like jewels. Her gown was just as glittery, reminding him of pale pink champagne. Tiny sleeves fell just off her shoulders, displaying the graceful curves of her upper arms and shoulders and making him want to kiss every inch of exposed skin. The dress’s neckline dipped to a deep vee, stopping just short of baring the tops of her breasts, while the rest of the
gown hugged her torso and hips, flaring at the bottom in pink waves. Dayne hadn’t known his mouth hung open until Eric’s hand beneath his chin nudged it shut.
“You look amazing,” Tess said.
“Thank you.” Kat gave Tess a quick hug. “How’s Rosie doing? Are she and Tiger still getting along well?”
“You should see them together.” Tess whipped out her phone and pulled up pics Dayne had already seen of Eric’s Dutch Shepherd K-9, Tiger, and the pretty Australian sheepdog-shepherd Tess had adopted from the Haven.
Kat shifted to look at the phone, and holy hell. He’d thought the front of her dress was eye-catching. I’m doomed. The back of the dress draped—no, make that swooped— teasingly low to just above her waist, leaving most of her back exposed. All that smooth, creamy skin called to him like an ice cream cone to a kid on a 95-degree day. He wanted to lick every last inch. Someone gulped, and damned if it wasn’t him.
Jaime unclipped his cell and began snapping shots of Dayne. “I gotta send these to Nick and Matt.” Kade and Eric joined in, and the air filled with the snapping clicks of cell phone cameras.
Dayne gritted his teeth so hard they squeaked. “Knock. It. Off.”
Kat stepped closer, massaging her chin as she examined the tux. “Something is a bit off. I wonder…” She pulled open the right side of the jacket, exposing his Glock. “Must you really wear this dastardly weapon of death? It ruins the cut.”
About the Author Tee O’Fallon is the author of the Federal K-9 Series and the NYPD Blue & Gold Series. Tee has been a federal agent for twenty-three years and is now a police investigator, giving her hands-on experience in the field of law enforcement that she combines with her love of romantic suspense. Tee’s job affords her the unique opportunity to work with the heroic men and women in law enforcement on a daily basis. When not writing, Tee enjoys cooking, gardening, chocolate, lychee martinis, and all creatures canine. Tee loves hearing from readers and can be contacted via her website http://teeofallon.com where you can also sign up for Tee’s newsletters.
Welcome to the blog tour for THE MARRIAGE GAME, a stand-alone adult contemporary romance, by Sara Desai, One of Oprah Magazine’s Most Anticipated Romances of 2020. See below for information on the book, buy links, a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR, and an exclusive excerpt.
Synopsis One of Oprah Magazine’s Most Anticipated Romances of 2020
A high stakes wager pits an aspiring entrepreneur against a ruthless CEO in this sexy romantic comedy.
After her life falls apart, recruitment consultant Layla Patel returns home to her family in San Francisco. But in the eyes of her father, who runs a Michelin starred restaurant, she can do no wrong. He would do anything to see her smile again. With the best intentions in mind, he offers her the office upstairs to start her new business and creates a profile on an online dating site to find her a man. She doesn’t know he’s arranged a series of blind dates until the first one comes knocking on her door…
As CEO of a corporate downsizing company Sam Mehta is more used to conflict than calm. In search of a quiet new office, he finds the perfect space above a cozy Indian restaurant that smells like home. But when communication goes awry, he’s forced to share his space with the owner’s beautiful yet infuriating daughter Layla, her crazy family, and a parade of hopeful suitors, all of whom threaten to disrupt his carefully ordered life.
As they face off in close quarters, the sarcasm and sparks fly. But when the battle for the office becomes a battle of the heart, Sam and Layla have to decide if this is love or just a game.
Excerpt 1 “You’re sitting at my desk.” She put the pot on the reception desk and folded her arms.
Sam shuffled his papers, spreading them across the polished wood surface for no reason other than to keep his gaze off her distractingly perfect breasts. “I didn’t see your name on it.”
“Just look at your lease. You’ll see it written across the top, or can’t you read big words like Patel?”
“I don’t recall seeing any identification,” he countered. “For all I know, you could have just walked in off the street. You’re certainly not dressed like you’re running a business.”
Eyes blazing, she glared. “What’s wrong with how I’m dressed?”
“An apron and a pink tracksuit with Juicy written across the ass are hardly serious business attire and they certainly don’t scream swipe right on desi Tinder.”
Sam didn’t know if there was such a thing as Tinder for people of South Asian descent living abroad, but if it did exist, he and Layla would definitely not have been a match.
Layla gave a growl of frustration. “You may be surprised to hear that I don’t live my life seeking male approval. I’m just getting over a breakup so I’m a little bit fragile. Last night, I went out with Daisy and drank too much, smoked something I thought was a cigarette, danced on a speaker, and fell onto some loser named Jimbo, whose girlfriend just happened to be an MMA fighter and didn’t like to see me sprawled on top of her man. We had a minor physical altercation and I was kicked out of the bar. Then I got dumped on the street by my Uber driver because I threw up in his cab. So today, I just couldn’t manage office wear. It’s called self-care, and we all need it sometimes. Danny certainly didn’t mind.” Danny certainly didn’t mind.”
“Who’s Danny?” The question came out before he could stop it.
“Someone who appreciates all I’ve got going here…” She ran a hand in and out of her generous curves. “… and isn’t hung up on trivial things like clothes.” She tugged off the apron and folded it on the crock-pot.
“I’m not hung up on clothes either,” Sam teased. “When I’m with a woman I prefer her to have no clothes at all.”
“You’re disgusting.” Layla grabbed her crock-pot and donuts and marched into the small kitchen at the back of the office.
Sam heard cupboards bang. Cutlery clatter. Angry mutters and a huff. A few minutes later Layla marched back out with a bowl of dal in one hand and two donuts circling her finger like rings.
Only when she sat down and proceeded to eat one of the donuts off her finger did he realize he hadn’t done any work since she walked in.
“Donuts and dal are not two foods that naturally go together,” he pointed out.
Layla took a giant bite and licked her lips. “Do you not have work to do? Or are you just going to sit there and look pretty?”
Author Sara Desai
About the Author Sara Desai has been a lawyer, radio DJ, marathon runner, historian, bouncer and librarian. She lives on Vancouver Island with her husband, kids and an assortment of forest creatures who think they are pets. Sara writes sexy romantic comedy and contemporary romance with a multicultural twist. When not laughing at her own jokes, Sara can be found eating nachos.
Welcome to the blog tour for COLD WICKED LIES, the third book in the adult romantic suspense series, Cold Justice – Crossfire, by New York Times bestselling author, Toni Anderson. See below for information on the book and series, buy links, and an exclusive excerpt.
COLD WICKED LIES (Cold Justice – Crossfire Series #3) by Toni Anderson
Synopsis Read the latest FBI romantic thriller by New York Times bestselling author Toni Anderson.
In an effort to halt an armed standoff, FBI negotiator Charlotte Blood tries to unravel the mystery of a young woman’s death on a remote mountainside. Pity she has to fight her stubborn, sexy, Hostage Rescue Team counterpart every step of the way.
As a highly skilled operative, HRT leader Payne Novak doesn’t have time to play detective or make nice with killers who flout the law. His focus is getting inside the compound and ending the siege as quickly as possible.
Forced to work together, the battle-hardened HRT team leader and the quietly determined negotiator figure out they might have more in common than they anticipated. As the clock ticks, Charlotte discovers there are some dangers she can’t talk her way out of, and the race to unearth long-buried lies becomes a matter of survival for everyone on the mountain.
Excerpt #1 She wagged the pen at him and moved closer. “You know, it’s exhausting trying to keep up with your moods.”
“Hot one minute. Cold the next.”
“Then don’t bother trying.” His voice was low and terse. He sounded mean. Good. He removed his sunglasses and gave her his flattest stare.
Charlotte blinked and then rolled her eyes. “For some reason I keep giving you the benefit of the doubt, that you’re not actually an ass. That you actually do like and respect me like you said back at the base.”
Novak opened his mouth to respond but she never gave him a chance to speak.
“But you’re grumpy every time I talk to some guy—” She cut herself off and stared at him with eyes that kept growing bigger.
He folded his arms over his chest. “What?”
She held his stare and he wished he had the strength to sever the connection.
“You’re jealous,” she said.
“Ha.” He walked around her waving a hand in defeat as he strode back to the Suburban. “That’s ridiculous.”
“Nonsensical. I’m not jealous. You’re delusional.”
He got in the cab and she opened the passenger door. “Not delusional. Spot on. Oh my god. I’ve seen more than a few signs. Like when I talk to or about Truman, you scowl.”
“That’s my resting bitch face.” He grabbed the coffee she’d purchased and left in the cup holder and took a slug.
“We’ve already established you’re attracted to me.”
The coffee spurted out. Oh god. She was talking about his hard-on that morning. He almost choked and grabbed a tissue to clean up the mess.
“You’re an attractive woman. I’m not blind.” He wasn’t gonna blush because of an autonomic biological reaction. Fuck.
She strapped herself in and reached for her own cup as he went to pick up his sandwich. Their hands brushed. Both froze.
She didn’t move her hand away and he couldn’t remove his. The connection felt both ephemeral and fragile and like something he wasn’t equipped to deal with, was not trained for. He wanted to turn his fingers over and interlink them with hers. All the anger and embarrassment drained out of him. But the frustration built. Frustration that he wasn’t the sort of guy a woman like Charlotte Blood would want.
About the Authors ToniAnderson writes award-winning, bestselling, FBI Romantic Thrillers. She is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, RITA® finalist, science nerd, professional tourist, dog lover, gardener, mom. Anderson‘s books have won the Readers’ Choice Award, Aspen Gold, National Excellence in Romance Fiction, Book Buyers’ Best.
Originally from a small town in Shropshire, England, Toni studied Marine Biology at University of Liverpool (B.Sc.) and University of St. Andrews (Ph.D.) with the intention she’d never be far from the ocean. Well, that plan backfired and she ended up in the Canadian prairies with her biology professor husband, two kids, a rescue dog, and a laid-back leopard gecko.
Toni started writing while pregnant with her first child and never stopped. Her greatest achievements are mastering the Tokyo subway, climbing Ben Lomond, snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef, and surviving fifteen Winnipeg winters (fingers crossed). She loves to travel for research purposes and was lucky enough to visit the Strategic Information and Operations Center inside FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. in 2016. She also got to shove another (police) car off the road during pursuit training at the Writer’s Police Academy. Basically she has way too much fun!