Friday, September 30, 2016

Book Blitz and Giveaway: Lost Wolf by Stacy Claflin


Lost Wolf
by Stacy Claflin
(Curse of the Moon, #1)
Publication date: July 17th 2016
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Young Adult
She’s hiding a dark secret. It already killed her once.
Victoria can’t wait to start college, but there’s a hitch—she can’t remember anything before arriving on campus. Her memories spark when she sees her ruggedly handsome math professor, but she senses something horrific. The shock on his face affirms her fears.
Toby is an alpha wolf who never thought he’d see his true love again—not after she died in his arms. Nothing could have prepared him for her walking into his class. But to his dismay, not only has she forgotten what happened, she doesn’t even know who she is.
He’s determined to do whatever it takes to restore what they’ve lost. Can Toby help Victoria recover her memories, or will he lose her forever?


EXCERPT:

Beads of sweat broke out along my hairline. I wiped them away, tightened my ponytail, and ran faster along the dirt trail, jumping over exposed roots and ducking under low-hanging branches. Pine trees, firs, and alders turned my path into more of an obstacle course than a trail.

A twig snapped behind me.

I glanced back, but didn’t see anything. Probably just a raccoon.

My sneaker hit a root and my arms flew in front of me. I landed on my hands and knees, and slid down an incline. Rocks and branches dug into my skin until I crashed into a huckleberry bush.

I stood and dusted myself off. Blood dripped from my legs. I pulled twigs, dirt, and small rocks from the cuts.

“Nice work, Victoria,” I muttered to myself.

Sasha had said I shouldn’t have gone into the forest for my first jog. But having just moved to the beautiful Olympic Peninsula, I wasn’t about to join a club when I had the great outdoors. Birds chirped all around and a stream bubbled nearby. It was like the woods were telling me I’d made the right choice.

Another snap.

“Who’s there?” I sounded a lot braver than I felt. My heart thundered against my ribcage and I whipped my head around. My roommates had said the woods were safe, but I was also trusting people who had been strangers only a couple days earlier.

Why had I gone into the woods alone? Wasn’t that how half of all horror movies started?

I thought of Sasha running on a treadmill, flirting with cute college guys. Maybe she was the smart one.

Footsteps.

“Hello?” I called.

Nothing. The birds had even stopped singing.

“Is anyone there?”

The footsteps came closer.

My pulse drummed in my ears. I fought to breathe normally.

A small gray and black wolf stepped out from behind the tree. He made eye contact with me.

I didn’t move a muscle, holding its gaze.
Author Bio:
Stacy Claflin is a USA Today bestselling author who writes about complex women overcoming incredible odds. Whether it's her Gone saga of psychological thrillers, her various paranormal romance tales, or her sweet romance series, Stacy's three-dimensional characters shine through.
Decades after she wrote her first stories on construction paper and years after typing on an inherited green screen computer that weighed half a ton, Stacy realized her dream of becoming a full-time bestselling author.
When she's not busy writing or educating her kids from home, Stacy enjoys watching TV shows like Supernatural, Pretty Little Liars, and Once Upon a Time.
Join Stacy's newsletter to get three free novels. Register here to get your books right away: http://stacyclaflin.com/newsletter/

 GIVEAWAY!
 Blitz-wide giveaway (INTL) - Ends October 6th, 2016
$50 Amazon Gift Card


a Rafflecopter giveaway

XBTBanner1

Release Day Blitz and Giveaway: The Panther Moon by Beth Trissel

Tour Graphic
We are so excited to bring you the release of THE PANTHER MOON, the third installment of The Secret Warrior Series by Beth Trissel. The Panther Moon continues on the story of our endearing heroine Morgan Daniel as she embarks on another adventure in this thrilling and action-packed novel guaranteed to keep you on the edge of your seats.
The Panther Moon is available now at:
Amazon (Kindle) | Barnes and Noble (Nook).
The Panther Moon Cover

About The Panther Moon

Series: The Secret Warrior, Book 3
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy Romance, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
- - - - -
Being the seventh Morcant has its perks: Morgan is learning to fly and wield magical blue fire.
But the coyote shifters are growing bolder. Mateo and his panthers seem impossible to defeat. And vampires aren't real – are they?
When the elusive and enigmatic Chief Okema disappears and the wards protecting the Wapicoli territory falter, Morgan and Jackson are forced into the role of leaders. Badly outnumbered and outgunned, do they have time to search for the secret of the Divining Tree, and will it help them in the final battle?
Note:
For a better and more enjoyable reading experience, it is highly recommended to first read The Hunter's Moon and Curse of the Moon, books one and two of the Secret Warrior Series respectively.
- - - - -
The Panther Moon is now on sale! Available at:
Amazon (Kindle) | Barnes and Noble (Nook)

Giveaway:

Join The Panther Moon giveaway contest from Sep 30 - Oct 2, 2016!
Get a chance to win
all three books of The Secret Warrior's Series
plus a $10 Amazon Gift Card!
Giveaway Graphic

Other Books in The Secret Warrior Series

Don't miss the first two books of The Secret Warrior Series by Beth Trissel! Available now.
The Hunter\'s Moon Cover
The Hunter's Moon
The Secret Warrior Series, Book 1
Seventeen-year-old Morgan Daniel has been in the witness protection program most of her life. But The Panteras have caught up with her and her younger brother. Her car is totaled, she's hurt, and the street gang is closing in when wolves with glowing eyes appear out of nowhere and chase away the killers.
Curse of the Moon Cover
Curse of the Moon
The Secret Warrior Series, Book 2
The bad news? Morgan Daniel’s wolf is out of control. The good news? There’s a treatment. She just has to get a potion from a lizard shifter witch—without looking into the witch’s eyes. Easy, right?

About Beth Trissel

Married to my high school sweetheart, I live on a farm in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia with my human family and furbabies. An avid gardener, my love of herbs and heirloom plants figures into my work. The rich history of Virginia, the Native Americans, and the people who journeyed here from far beyond her borders are at the heart of my inspiration. I'm especially drawn to colonial America and the drama of the American Revolution. In addition to historical romance, I also write time travel, paranormal, YA/NA fantasy romance, and non-fiction.
Visit the Official Beth Trissel Blog: https://bethtrissel.wordpress.com/
Connect with Beth Trissel on Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram
- - - - -
In partnership with
Book Unleashed

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday: Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, and Robin Wasserman

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine where we spotlight upcoming releases that we're eagerly awaiting.  This week I'm picking a book of short stories about one of my favorite characters in the Mortal Instruments series, Simon.  I haven't read many of the other short stories that go with the series, but am excited to give these a try.  Here is the blurb from Goodreads:

The New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling collection of short stories chronicling the adventures of Simon Lewis as he trains to become a Shadowhunter is now available in print for the first time with ten brand-new comic illustrations!

Simon Lewis has been a human and a vampire, and now he is becoming a Shadowhunter. The events of City of Heavenly Fire left him stripped of his memories, and Simon isn’t sure who he is anymore. So when the Shadowhunter Academy reopens, Simon throws himself into this new world of demon-hunting, determined to find himself again. Whomever this new Simon might be.

But the Academy is a Shadowhunter institution, which means it has some problems. Like the fact that non-Shadowhunter students have to live in the basement. At least Simon’s trained in weaponry—even if it’s only from hours of playing D&D.

Join Simon on his journey to become a Shadowhunter, and learn about the Academy’s illustrious history along the way, through guest lecturers such as Jace Herondale, Tessa Gray, and Magnus Bane. Written by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson, and Robin Wasserman, these moving and hilarious short stories are perfect for the fan who just can’t get enough of the Shadowhunters. 


I know there are a lot of people who aren't the biggest fans of the series, but I am.  And I can't wait to hear more about this whole time period for Simon.  The authors listed are also some of my favorites, so I'm sure there will be a lot of good stories.

That's my book I'm eagerly anticipating this week. What book are you waiting on? 

Review: Legal by Bree Dahlia

BOOK DETAILS:
Legal
by Bree Dahlia
Publication date: July 20th, 2016
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Romance

Blurb:
Taboo. Wrong. Off limits.
I know the drill. I know the rules.
But damn, if he doesn’t get under my skin.
And into my bed.

There’s no reason for a woman like me,
Successful, established, independent,
To ever be sleeping with a younger man.
A younger man with a hard, rugged, sculptured body.
A body that can go all night.
All night.

I can’t resist, can’t turn him down.
Can’t walk away.
Because I’ve never known pleasure like this.
Chase Nolan walked into my life and disrupted my perfect little world.
And made it so much better.

Enjoy it while you can, Jillian.
Because there’s no way there’s a future for us.
After all, is he barely even legal?

My Review:
First I have to say thanks to Xpresso book tours for allowing me to read a review copy of this book.  I really ended up enjoying it a lot!  The story was great, the sex scenes were really hot, and I really loved the characters.  

I was first drawn to the story because it is about an older woman with a younger man, and I personally like younger men.  So that made the story fun for me.  And man, Chase sounded like a total  hottie!  The first night when they met and had their "one-night stand", wow, that was really sexy and mind-blowing.  Perry is the main character Jillian's best friend, as well as Jillian's brother's girlfriend.  And while I adore Perry, and what a great friend she is, not to mention how snarky and fun she is, if she was my friend?  And she kept putting me in the awkward situations of running into the guy I didn't want to see, or protested that I didn't want to see, well, she and I would have some major words!  Now yeah, I know it was really all for the best, as Chase and Jillian totally belong together.  But still, I was so ready to slap Perry for Jillian!  

While I also understood all the reasons Jillian didn't want to have an actual "relationship" beyond friends with benefits with this guy who was 15 years younger than she was, at a certain point her stubbornness just got ridiculous. To the point for me, that even if it was part of the conflict/suspense of the story, I marked it down from a 5 star to a 4 star book.  Or maybe it is a 4.5 star rating for me. Because I really did enjoy this book.  When I would start reading it, it was really hard to stop to do anything else, like work, go to sleep, etc.  I did like the way the author did a last chapter from Chase's viewpoint, and it left me hoping for a sequel.  

Grab this book for a fun, sexy read!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Promo Post and Giveaways: Nine Candles of the Deepest Black by Matthew S. Cox


Nine Candles of Deepest Black
by Matthew S. Cox
Published by: Curiosity Quills Press
Publication date: September 15th 2016
Genres: Horror, Paranormal, Young Adult
She saw it coming. She knew it would happen―but no one believed her.
Almost a year after tragedy shattered her family, sixteen-year-old Paige Thomas can’t break free from her guilt. Her mother ignores her, doting on her annoying little sister, while her father is a barely-functioning shell. He hopes a move to the quiet little town of Shadesboro PA will help them heal, but Paige doesn’t believe in happiness anymore.
On her first day at school, a chance encounter with a bullied eighth grader reawakens a gift Paige had forgotten, and ingratiates her into a pack of local outcasts. For weeks, they’ve been trying to cast a ritual to fulfill their innermost desires, but all they’ve done is waste time. After witnessing Paige touch the Ouija board and trigger a paranormal event, the girls are convinced another try with their new fifth member will finally work.
Once the darkness is unleashed, it’s not long before they learn it will give them exactly what they asked for―whether they want it or not.

Excerpt:
Sleep decided it wasn’t on speaking terms with Paige that night. After hiding in a ball for some hours, she risked a peek at the darkness. Nothing looked wrong. Nothing felt wrong. She reached up and turned on the little lamp on her nightstand, then pulled her foot up and looked. Two red dots proved the thorns weren’t a dream.
 

“Amber?” She looked around. “Are you here? Did we mess up? Did we do something bad?”
 

The crickets outside grew deafening.
 

Whispering came from the bathroom. Paige gathered blankets at her chin and shrank down.
 

“Who’s there?”
 

Rasps and titters continued, unchanged by her voice. Of course, the thought of the bathroom made her acutely aware of the need to use it. Figures. Paige stared at it for a while, unwilling to leave the ‘safety’ of the blankets. Ugh. What am I, six? My bed isn’t gonna stop a demon. She peeled the blankets away and stood, hands balled to fists at her sides. Step by step, she crept to the door between her bedroom and its attached bathroom, favoring her right foot. The two-inch gap offered a view of whispery darkness. The voices grew louder as she got closer.
 

“Something’s going to jump out at me.” Paige grasped the edge of the door. It doesn’t matter how much I expect it; I’m going to scream. She braced herself and whipped the door open.
 

The whispers ceased.
 

Paige stared at the strip of light leaking in from her bedroom, stretched over the white tile floor and shaggy bathmat. Her gaze settled on the empty spot where she’d left the thorn. Of course it’s gone. She allowed herself to breathe again and fumbled for the light switch. Eerie became bright, clean, and normal. Paige avoided stepping on the bathmat on the way to the toilet.
 

Not two seconds after the stream stopped, a creak came from the bedroom. She shot upright where she sat and pulled her pajamas as far up her thighs as she could without standing. “Who’s there?”
 

Silence.
 

She finished up and moved to the door, peering around the corner at an empty bedroom dark in comparison to the mostly white bathroom. I’m either losing my grip or I’ve pissed something off. She thought about what Mackenzie said… New Hope. Maybe I can find an old witch there who can fix this.
 

Nothing felt off, so she swiped at the bathroom light switch and scurried back to bed. The warm cocoon of blankets embraced her with the prospect of a rapid fall to sleep. Paige reached up, switched off the nightstand light, and snuggled into the pillow.
 

Seconds later, she sensed a presence and opened her eyes.
 

Melissa’s face hovered inches from hers, staring into her soul.
 

Paige shot upright, screaming. Melissa backpedaled and fell on her butt.
 

“Holy crap.” Paige grabbed her chest. “You scared me half to death.”
 

Melissa looked down. A mermaid doll dangled by one arm from her left hand.
 

“What’s wrong?”
 

“I’m scared too.” Melissa crawled to the bed and grasped the edge, peering over it. “Can I sleep here tonight? Someone was talking in my closet.”
 

Paige swallowed hard. “Okay.” She held up the covers.
 

Melissa crawled in and cuddled close. Paige lowered her arm and wrapped her little sister in a blanket hug. A nose full of strawberry-tinted red hair wasn’t the worst way to spend the night. She tried not to think about anything, especially not about the shadowy figure hovering over the candles. Melissa’s breathing changed, indicating sleep within two minutes. Mildly jealous, Paige closed her eyes.
 


Author Bio:
Born in a little town known as South Amboy NJ in 1973, Matthew has been creating science fiction and fantasy worlds for most of his reasoning life. Somewhere between fifteen to eighteen of them spent developing the world in which Division Zero, Virtual Immortality, and The Awakened Series take place. He has several other projects in the works as well as a collaborative science fiction endeavor with author Tony Healey.

Hobbies and Interests:
Matthew is an avid gamer, a recovered WoW addict, Gamemaster for two custom systems (Chronicles of Eldrinaath [Fantasy] and Divergent Fates [Sci Fi], and a fan of anime, British humour (<- after="" and="" br="" deliberate="" fiction="" happens="" intellectual="" it.="" life="" nature="" of="" questions="" reality="" science="" that="" the="" what="">
He is also fond of cats.<- after="" also="" and="" cats.="" deliberate="" fiction="" fond="" happens="" he="" intellectual="" is="" it.="" life="" nature="" of="" p="" questions="" reality="" science="" that="" the="" what="">


Click on the tour button below to check out the rest of the stops on this tour.

XBTBanner1
   

    Goodreads Book Giveaway  

   
        Nine Candles of Deepest Black by Matthew S. Cox    
   
     

          Nine Candles of Deepest Black      

     

          by Matthew S. Cox      

     
         
            Giveaway ends September 30, 2016.          
         
            See the giveaway details             at Goodreads.          
     
   
   
    Enter Giveaway

Cover Reveal and Giveaway: Enigma by Vanessa Liebe

It gives us great pleasure to bring you the Cover Reveal for ENIGMA, the first novel in The Enigma Series by Vanessa Liebe! Enigma is wet, wild, and deliciously sensual... guaranteed to tickle your senses in every fun and imaginative way.
Enigma cover

About Enigma

Series: The Enigma Trilogy, Book 1
Genre: Erotic Romance, Contemporary Romance, Marital Heat
Mark and Lucy Fuller have a great marriage, or so they think. But there is always room for improvement and there is one side to their marriage that they have never discussed or indulged in and that is their fantasies. When Lucy is referred to a new club where they can enact their fantasies, albeit only be intimate with one another, they become members and discover a whole new side to their marriage with some interesting and positive results.
READER ALERT:
Mark had no idea being kidnapped by his wife could be so arousing or that she could spank so well. Caution! When you read about Mark and Lucy’s sexual fantasies you may need that cold shower. Join them on a wet, wild and deliciously sensual ride and dare to wonder about your own.

Giveaway

Join the Enigma giveaway contest from Sep 27 - Nov 22, 2016!
Get a chance to win a $30 Amazon Gift Card + Themed Gifts!
Enigma giveaway graphic

Coming Soon!

Watch out for the Enigma Release Day announcement happening soon.

About Vanessa Liebe

Vanessa Liebe Author PicVanessa Liebe is the author of fun, sexy erotic romance and erotica, both contemporary and historical. She mostly writes in the Fantasy and Paranormal categories as she likes a man with bite.
Vanessa is married with three children and resides in Hampshire, South East England. When not house training her children, reading or writing, she likes to sit in the garden with a glass of rose wine.
Visit the Official Vanessa Liebe blog site: https://vanessaliebe.com
Connect with Vanessa Liebe on Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads

In partnership with
Book Unleashed

Monday, September 26, 2016

Promo Post and Giveaway: Piece by Piece by Elisabeth Staab

 
Book Blurb:
ETHAN’S HIT A ROUGH SPOT

So I caught my dad in bed with my ex-girlfriend.

My best friend cancelled our plans to celebrate my birthday.

Decided to drink away the betrayal.

Made out with a cardboard cutout of a celebrity in front of my new roommates.

Got in a bar fight.

Hooked up with that pretty bartender whose sad smile I’ve secretly been painting pictures of since forever, but she shoved me out the door without a word.

Did I mention the tattoo I don’t exactly remember getting?

And that’s only Saturday.

Now I need to pick up the pieces of my messed-up life.

LEEANNE’S HAD A TOUGH LIFE

What do you do when you’ve lived in the same small town your whole life and you feel as if you’ll always be stuck in the same rut, like a piece of busted wagon wheel? Well, maybe you start by hooking up with the first decent guy who walks into your bar.

Maybe once you do, it’s hard to get him out of your head even though you try. And maybe, just maybe, you find out he makes you laugh even more than he makes you want to shout his name.

If you’re me, you don’t even know what to do with a guy like him. A little piece of happiness…that feels downright dangerous.

Book Links:


Excerpt:

(LeeAnn’s POV):

So, whatcha thinking? Time to go?” He rises up on his knees. The way he’s poised, he could either move away or get closer just as easily.

“Oh, I don’t know. I'm not dizzy yet.” Not that I honestly want to get dizzy, but we’ve gotten a little too serious. After Ethan brought me here to have fun, I want to lighten the mood.

With his hands deep in the pockets of his leather jacket, Ethan leans in toward me again. “I thought you didn't want me to make you dizzy.”

I didn't think so. Yet here we are, hot breath puffing in the cold air between us. My lips tingle as he leans close. It’s impossible to forget the way his hands explored me so carefully before. The way his tongue tasted me like he wanted to keep on tasting me forever.

“You remember that first time you kissed me?”

His cheeks turn a deep merlot. “Damn right I do. I remember thinking it was the best kiss I'd ever had.”

Well now. I'm pretty sure if I wasn't sitting on something cold and metal, I'd have just melted right into the playground gravel.

“It was the first time I’d kissed someone because I wanted to, and not because I thought I should.” My chest feels strange when I confess this to him. Like it’s full of butterflies or bees. Lighter but nervous. And oh God, my heart is just bouncing every which way.

As his hair brushes my forehead, his dimple deepens and his eyes get darker. “I’m glad you wanted to kiss me, LeeAnne. I’ve been dying to do it again.”

Maybe…maybe I don’t have to lean on him. Maybe I could just lean in again. Meet those wind-chapped lips halfway. That’d be okay, right?

I wrap my arms around my knees and smile. “I think I've decided I wouldn't mind getting a little dizzy.”

His lips brush mine so fast, I’m left breathless when he jumps from the merry-go-round to give it a spin.

“Hang on tight,” he says.

So I do.

About the Author:
Elisabeth Staab started hunting mutant hedgehogs back in 1842… Oops, wrong bio… Elisabeth Staab digs coffee, saucy stories, and sexy things that go bump in the night. Once, she ate dinner in a jail and liked it. She lives in the Washington DC area with her incredible family and does her best to juggle life while ignoring the laundry.

Newsletter: http://elisabethstaab.com/newsletter-signup/


 Giveaway:
  • Elisabeth is giving away a cute makeup kit she made (US only) or an ecopy of Piece by Piece (INT). Follow the Tour!

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Review: Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

Book info:
TitleThree Dark Crowns  
Author:  Kendare Blake
Genre:  YA Fantasy
Published:  September 20th, 2016
Source:  ARC received from SparkPoint Studio (also through books for trade)

I was contacted back in August by a publicist from SparkPoint Studio about being part of a Fall YA Blog Tour, and one of the books they were featuring was this one, Three Dark Crowns.  This was a book I'd been excited about since I first heard of it earlier this past summer. So I emailed and asked if there were still any copies of it left so that I could be a part of the tour.  And lucky me, they still had copies available!  Now, it was a little later before I got the book, but I was still able to get it read, almost on time.  The plan was to do a review on Friday, but I wasn't able to get it finished in time.  I tried really hard to finish it before bed, getting through almost 100 pages before bed, but then I was tired.  So I finished the final 50 pages this morning while I was getting my pedicure.  And let me tell you what, those last 50 or so pages were incredible!!!  The whole story was good, but the end, well it just really grabbed me and held on, and kept me gasping and reading with my mouth hanging wide open until the bitter, and I mean bitter, end.  So many surprises at the end.  Betrayals, magical gifts being different than suspected, and the romance, even that had its twists and turns.  

The story is told in three separate viewpoints, one for each queen, and they basically alternate through each one.  The first queen that we meet is Katharine.  She comes from the current ruling family of the poisoners.  You see these people are able to eat anything poisonous and live. They also know how to come up with poisons to affect others when needed.  But Katharine doesn't quite seem to live up to her gift, and it worries those around her, that one of the other two queens, her two sisters, will end up winning the fight for the crown, thus ending the rule of the Poisoners.  When we first meet Katharine she is getting ready to do a sort of "practice" meal, what she will have to do when the competition between the queens first starts.  She must eat from all the different dishes of a special meal, one where every type of food is poison, mushrooms, poison creatures, berries, etc.  She's never been able to really stomach much of the poison, so her only hope is to be able to eat a little bit, and then get away from everyone before she is unable to hold it down any longer.  Only things don't quite work out that way.  And with her failure, her own people lose confidence in her, and she is disgraced.  Her trainer's nephew, Pietyr, shows up to try to prepare Katharine to capture all of the suitors attention, thinking that may be the best way to go.

The second queen we find out about is Arsinoe.  While Katharine was the youngest of the three, Arsinoe is the middle girl.  Arsinoe is with the naturalist people. These people can communicate with animals, make plants grow, all of that.  Arsinoe's best friend, Jules, is actually one of the strongest naturalists that anyone has seen in a long time.  Unfortunately, Arsinoe doesn't seem to be getting her gift.  Unlike everyone else in the town, she doesn't have her own familiar, and can't seem to attract one.  With the help of Jules's mother Madrigal, she begins to use a type of low magic to try to do what she needs to do.  The first attempt is to get a bear, and when it seems to be working, and Arsinoe goes out to find this bear, things turn bad, because the bear isn't under her power, instead it attacks, and Arsinoe's chances at being queen seem to go down, just as Katharine's have.  The romance at first in this one is between her friend Jules and their childhood friend Joseph.  Joseph has been away at the mainland, punished for trying to help Arsinoe escape the island when she was  younger.  But now he comes back, and he brings with him the son of his foster family, William, or Billy as he goes by.  Billy is going to be a suitor.  And he begins by getting to know Arsinoe, and becoming her friend.

The final queen is Mirabella.  Mirabella's gift is strong, she is an elemental.  She can control water, wind, fire, and the earth itself.  She is also backed by the priestesses.  And this year, she is rumored to be the strongest of the three queens, and is pretty much set to win according to most.  But Mirabella, who is the oldest of the three, doesn't think she will be able to go through with killing her own sisters.  She doesn't quite have the heart for it. Something that is shown to the priestesses when she isn't even able to participate in a sacrifice like she is supposed to.  When the priestesses begin to worry things won't go the right way because of this soft side of Mirabella, they scheme to come up with a new plan.  A White Queen year.  Where the other two queens are killed by other people or events before the final ceremony.  And the priestesses set out to try to make this happen.  At first there isn't much a love interest in this, although because of her beauty and strong gift, Mirabella is still expected to win all of the suitors.  Then, during one event where Mirabella has affected the water and wind and caused a boat to almost sink, and the boy in it to drown, she does find a connection. But it is this connection that will be a betrayal in a way to one of her sisters.

Let me say how much I loved the way this story was done.  I love how the different gifts were used, or how they were not used by those who could not.  I love the characters relationships with the people around them. There were definitely the people around them that you rooted for, and were so happy the queens had in their life.  Then there were those people that you hated and rooted for anything bad to happen to keep them away from the queens. And then there were those that gave up unimaginable things to help the queens, and those that were so close, yet still betrayed them.  There were moments when you thought one of the queens was going to die, and it was so shocking.  And there were times when they could come back from what seemed to be the edge, and that too was amazing.  

I loved this book.  I am so eager to read the next one, because with the way things were left, there are so many things that could happen!  I want the sisters to unite against everyone and rule together, but now it doesn't seem as if that will happen, with all the betrayal, real or imagined.  So much in this story.  I hope that you get a chance to pick this up and read it soon!

Review: Inclusions by Emily Duvall

Book info:
TitleInclusions  
Author:  Emily Duvall
SeriesFlawless #1  
Genre:  Contemporary romance
Published:  June 2nd, 2015
Source:  Won copy of book from author

First I have to say thank you to the author, because I won this from her, I believe it was in a contest on Facebook.  Other than some of the usual issues I have with independently published books, spelling and general editing issues, I really enjoyed this book.  When I first picked it up, I immediately started speeding through it, as it grabbed my attention and I couldn't seem to put it down!  

The main characters are Melanie and Luke.  They used to date, Melanie's brother used to be in the jewel business with Luke.  That is until he supposedly tried to kill Luke after stealing some jewels.  Because Melanie couldn't believe her brother would ever do that, and her brother insisted that he was innocent, it drove her and Luke apart, to where it was Luke's lawyer who basically broke up with her.  She hasn't even tried to get in touch with Luke since then, I mean he put her brother in prison, and ruined his life.  But then, her brother needs a favor, needs her to ask Luke to give him a break, so that he can get out of prison when he is up for parole.  So even though she does not want to, she sets out to see Luke and ask him this favor.

Luke, of course, refuses to do this.  He knows exactly what happened, and still feels betrayed that Melanie didn't believe him.  But he does still have feelings for her.  He has gone on with his brothers to create a very successful jewel business, and doesn't need to look back.  But when Melanie comes over, and he sees how good she is with kids who have developmental issues, especially the few minutes she spends with his own daughter, he offers her a deal.  If she will come with him to his brother's wedding, and work with his daughter, he might help her brother.  Except he really intends to show her just how wrong she is about her brother.  And he gets her to do this by convincing her current employers that he needs her, and that they should tell her they have no work for her right now.  So she is forced to go with him.  

Of course being in a romantic setting like Hawaii together, things do tend to get out of hand.  Their attraction begins to come out, and be almost impossible to ignore.  But neither will still trust the other, and this will lead to more heartbreak.  And as usual, there are all kind of other dramas going on, with Luke's brothers especially, and other women, even the one getting married.  

As I said, this was a very good read.  I could barely put it down once I picked it up.  I look forward to reading on in the series.  

Friday, September 23, 2016

Audiobook Review: Charged (Saints of Denver #2) by Jay Crownover

Book info:
TitleCharged  
Author:  Jay Crownover
SeriesSaints of Denver #2  
Genre:  New Adult Contemporary Romance
Published:  May 24th, 2016
Source:  Digital audiobook downloaded from public library

I've finally reached the point where I am having to wait on the next book in the series by a new favorite author.  I was able to breeze through the Marked Men series at my own pace, but got all of them read/listened to in one year, or actually less than a year.  This book is actually the second in a spinoff from that series.  So I love that we get to see tidbits of all our favorite characters from before, mixed in with new people to decide we love.  

The two main characters in this are Avett and Quaid.  We know Avett because her dad owned the bar that Rome took over in his book.  And she worked there for a while, but she was not a character that you really liked too  much.  I mean in Asa's book, you felt sorry for her knowing that her boyfriend did hit her, not to mention that she got beat up by drug guys that were after that same boyfriend.  She stole from the bar, and again in Asa's book, her boyfriend shot Asa's girlfriend.  That is what led to where she and Quaid happened to meet.  Asa took money he came into at the end of his story and used it to hire Quaid to help Avett with her own court case for being part of the robbery and shooting at the bar, because she drove her boyfriend there.  Asa believes in Avett's innocence, and wants to see her get a chance, probably because we know he was not a good guy for most of his life, and he wants to take the chance to help her get out of all of her trouble.

Quaid we know from the first book in the Saints of Denver series, Built.  He was introduced to us as a kind of slimy, womanizing lawyer, who Rowdy's sister Sayer knows as she is a lawyer as well.  One thing I really like about this series so far, is that the books are kind of all taking place over the same time period.  There were several scenes in the first book that are replayed again from Quaid and Avett's points of view, instead of Zeb and Sayer's points of view.  Quaid is at the top of his game, because he will defend anyone, even guilty criminals, and he has one of the best winning records at getting those people off.  At first he doesn't want to know anything about Avett's case more than what he needs to get her a deal. But Avett refuses to plead guilty, because she knows she isn't.  Now, Quaid must help her fight to prove her innocence.  Quaid comes from a poor background, working towards where he is just to prove that he could.  He even went through a horrible divorce recently.  Now he is on the path to hopefully becoming a partner in his firm.  But his bosses expect him to continue to defend the same types of people he has been.  

Avett's decision to plead not guilty, and to testify against her boyfriend, puts her in danger with the drug gang that is why her boyfriend did what he did in the first place.  They think Avett knows where the drugs are, and so they are after her.  It puts her family in danger, to the point that her dad's house even burns down.  It is at this point that Quaid and Avett are really starting to feel the attraction to each other and give into it.  And when Quaid gets asked by his bosses to defend a man who is charged with lighting his own house on fire when his own child was even in the house, Quaid can't stomach taking that on.

The chemistry between Quaid and Avett is definitely hot.  For being such a "straight-laced" upstanding lawyer guy, Quaid seems to have a few things he wants to try that Avett is willing to do in order to make him happy.  Something at the end we get to read about.  Avett has a bad thing in her past, something that has caused her to feel like she doesn't deserve good things to happen, and why she seems to make bad choices.  Quaid has to push past these walls she's built.  

I also loved when we tied back to the characters in the little pre-story, Leveled.  I loved getting more info on Wheeler, and I can't wait for his book!  There was a third narrator on this audiobook, and it turns out it was a third person, Church, a friend of Rome's.  I think the next book in the series is going to be Church's.  Not sure if I'll be able to listen to that narrator, as he has a very deep, almost Barry White type of voice, that sometimes is hard to understand what he's saying, and might be too distracting for me.  So I may end up actually reading the next one, instead of listening.  But I'm ready to get that story!   

Once again, I love another story by this author.  And a week from today I should be getting to meet the author and be all fangirl about how much I love her stories.  Look for pictures of me with her after I go to New Orleans.