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A Lie for a Lie (All In, book 1), by Helena Hunting

15 Oct

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Format: e-ARC, 285 pages

Publisher: Montlake Romance

Published: 15 October 2019

ISBN: 9781542015356

Genre: General Fiction (Adult), Romance

Back cover blurb: From the New York Times bestselling author of the Pucked series comes a romantic comedy about instant attraction, second chances, and not-so-little white lies.

My review: I didn’t think much of Rookie in the Pucked series, particularly in Lance’s book, but I immediately changed my view after only a few pages of Helena Hunting’s latest book and first in a new spinoff series. He was a wonderful hero and had obviously matured in the intervening period. Lainey was a good heroine but I couldn’t help feeling her lie was much bigger than his, tipping the balance in his favour for my sympathies. Thankfully, there was no contrived external conflict to break these two up in the latter part of the story. However, as other reviewers have stated, this book is not exactly what the blurb describes, and if you don’t like the trope – and I’m not a fan – you may feel blindsided. Still, I couldn’t put this down and will definitely be reading the rest of the series.

***Disclaimer: This e-ARC was provided to me by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to them. ***

My rating: 5/5

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Consumed, by J.R. Ward

9 Nov

39293128Format: e-ARC, 416 pages

Publisher: Hachette Australia, Piatkus

Published: October 2, 2018

ISBN: 9780349420622

Genre: Romance

Back cover blurb: From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the popular Black Dagger Brotherhood series comes a brand-new novel about arson investigator, Anne Ashburn, who is consumed by her troubled past, her family’s scorched legacy, and her current case: chasing a deadly killer.

Anne Ashburn is a woman consumed…

By her bitter family legacy, by her scorched career as a firefighter, by her obsession with department bad-boy Danny McGuire, and by a new case that pits her against a fiery killer.

Strong-willed Anne was fearless and loved the thrill of fighting fires, pushing herself to be the best. But when one risky decision at a warehouse fire changes her life forever, Anne must reinvent not only her job, but her whole self.

Shattered and demoralized, Anne finds her new career as an arson investigator a pale substitute for the adrenaline-fueled life she left behind. She doesn’t believe she will ever feel that same all-consuming passion for her job again–until she encounters a string of suspicious fires setting her beloved city ablaze.

Danny McGuire is a premiere fireman, best in the county, but in the midst of a personal meltdown. Danny is taking risks like never before and seems to have a death wish until he teams up with Anne to find the fire starter. But Danny may be more than a distraction, and as Anne narrows in on her target, the arsonist begins to target her.

From the creator of the bestselling Black Dagger Brotherhood, get ready for a new band of brothers. And a firestorm.

My review: Ward’s new series starts out okay, but with such an unlikeable heroine at its centre it was a bit of a slog to get through this first book.

Had it not been for the fact I read the prequel novellas I would find it difficult to see what Danny saw in Anne. She was very unsympathetic, and I had a hard time with her choosing to take the word of an acquaintance over Danny. She was pretty tough on her mother, too. Anne’s brother was horrible, and I also had a big problem with the idea that a fire chief could be in his thirties. Only Danny was great, and his buddies seem good guys – so far, so like the BDB. It seems Ward can write heroes really well but the women she has trouble with.

In fact, the more Ward I read, the more I am convinced she’s not a great writer. Her style is full of clichés and “gangsta lite” – instead of saying Danny lit a cigarette, Ward writes that he “got his smoke on.” Ugh. Tighter editing and removal of some of the clichés could have made this a much pacier, more enjoyable read.

I’ll probably continue with the series, but only because I know the heroes will probably be worth it.

***Disclaimer: This e-ARC was provided to me by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to them. ***

My rating: 3.5/5

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Eye Candy, by by Tijan, Tara Sivec, J. Daniels, Helena Hunting, and Bella Jewel

14 Jan

35265623Format: e-ARC, 660 pages

Publisher: Swerve

Published: 5 September, 2017

ISBN: 9781250148230

Genre: Romance

Back cover blurb: A frightfully good time! Dive into these Halloween novellas from bestselling authors Tijan, J. Daniels, Helena Hunting, Bella Jewel and Tara Sivec. Featuring stories set in the worlds of their popular series.

My review: I didn’t much like the Tijan story, which was the first thing I’ve read by her, but the rest of this anthology was solid and very enjoyable. The best story by far was Helena Hunting’s, and I’m keen to read more with these characters. I think I’ll also have to check out the other writers in the collection, too, whom I haven’t read before.

***Disclaimer: This e-ARC was provided to me by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to them. ***

My rating: 4/5

 

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The Ones Who Got Away, by Roni Loren (sneak peek)

12 Apr

Format: e-ARC, sneak peek of first three chapters

Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca

To Be Published: January 2, 2018

ISBN: 9781492651406

Genre: Romance

Back cover blurb: A fresh new contemporary romance from New York Times and USA Today bestseller Roni Loren that will rock your world.

Twelve years ago, tragedy struck the senior class of Long Acre High School. Only a small number of students survived, a group the media dubbed as The Ones Who Got Away.

Now, web designer Liv Arias, along with the rest of the survivors, have returned to the small Texas town to tell their stories for a documentary. Which means Liv seeing former star-athlete and old flame Finn Dorsey. A lot happened between them that night and Liv is ready to end their decade-long riff and move on. But when her attempt at closure turns into a steamy kiss, moving on proves much more difficult than either of them thought…

Liv’s words cut off as Finn got closer. The man approaching was nothing like the boy she’d known. The bulky football muscles had streamlined into a harder, leaner package. The smooth face was now dusted with scruff, and the look in his deep green eyes held no trace of boyish innocence. A thousand things were in those eyes. A thousand things welled up in Liv.

My review: *** This review is for a sneak peek of the first three chapters, which were provided to me by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to them. ***

Oh, this is sooo good! I haven’t read a Roni Loren book before but I’ve been aware of her work and her writing advice, so when I saw the unique premise in the blurb I knew I had to have it. Even from just the sneak peek I can get a good sense of the characters and what they have been through as survivors of a school shooting. Twelve years later they’ve returned to film a documentary, and the chemistry between Liv and her secret love, Finn, doesn’t appear to have diminished, although she has blamed him for what happened to her that day. He’s a bit of a man of mystery as an adult, and – this goes without saying – super hot. Just this taster was not enough and I cannot wait to read the rest of the story. Is it January yet?

My rating: 5/5

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The Hating Game, by Sally Thorne

14 Jan

Format: e-ARC, 363 pages

Publisher: Hachette Australia

Published: August 9, 2016

ISBN: 9780349414256

Genre: General Fiction (Adult)

Back cover blurb: NEMESIS (n)

1) An opponent or rival whom a person cannot best or overcome
2) A person’s undoing
3) Joshua Templeman
Lucy Hutton has always been certain that the nice girl can get the corner office. She prides herself on being loved by everyone at work – except for imposing, impeccably attired Joshua Templeman.
Trapped in a shared office, they’ve become entrenched in an addictive, never-ending game of one-upmanship. There’s the Staring Game, The Mirror Game, The HR Game. Lucy can’t let Joshua beat her at anything – especially when a huge promotion is on offer.
If Lucy wins, she’ll be Joshua’s boss. If she loses, she’ll resign. So why is she questioning herself? Maybe she doesn’t hate him. And just maybe, he doesn’t hate her either. Or maybe this is just another game . . .

My review: The Hating Game is one of those books from which you resent real life taking you away. Many times I had to put it down to go and do RL stuff, only to find myself muttering “Joshua Templeman…” I loved the snarky banter, and the swoons were many. Nothing came as a surprise, as I was paying attention and could see where things were going, but I loved it all nonetheless. I think Sally Thorne is about to become my latest auto-buy author. When I started this I was unaware she was someone who had been recommended to me often by friends in an online writing community, so I shouldn’t have been surprised that it was fantastic. I highly recommend, and will be keeping a keen eye out for Thorne’s next project.

***Disclaimer: This e-ARC was provided to me by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to them. ***

My rating: 5/5

5cupcakes

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Cover Reveal: Mastering Her Senses (Blasphemy #2), by Laura Kaye

17 Nov

Decadent… Sensual… Forbidden…

12 Masters. 12 Desires. 12 Fantasies Come to Life.
Meet the Masters of Blasphemy…

Releasing February 21, 2017, MASTERING HER SENSES is the second full-length novel in Laura Kaye’s Blasphemy Series. Check out the amazing cover created by Kim Killion from The Killion Group below!

 

A Note from Laura Kaye:

Friends! I’m so excited to share the cover for Mastering Her Senses, the second book in my new erotic Blasphemy series! I’ve been dying to write Master Quinton since he first appeared on the page, and now he is coming your way this February. I’m also excited because the heroine, Cassia Locke, is the sister of one of the Raven Riders (Jagger Locke), so there will be some fun series crossover happening in this book, too! So, so much to love! I hope you’ll check it out and the other books in the series, too!

xo, Laura

12 Masters. Infinite fantasies. Welcome to Blasphemy…

He wants to dominate her senses—and her heart…

Quinton Ross has always been a thrill-seeker—so it’s no surprise that he’s drawn to extremes in the bedroom and at his BDSM club, Blasphemy, where he creates sense-depriving scenarios that blow submissives’ minds. Now if he could just find one who needs the rush as much as him…

When an accident leaves Cassia Locke with a paralyzing fear of the dark, she’ll try anything to get help. Ready to fight, she knows just who to ask for help—the hard-bodied, funny-as-hell Dom she’d always crushed on—and once stood up.

Quinton is shocked and a little leery to see Cassia, but he can’t pass up the chance to dominate the alluring little sub this time. Introducing her to sensory deprivation becomes his new favorite obsession, and watching her fight fear is its own thrill. But when doubt threatens to send her running again, Quinton must find a way to master her senses—and her heart.

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Books in Series:

Hard to Serve #.5

Bound to Submit #1

Mastering Her Senses #2 – 2/21/17

Eyes on You #3 – 7/11/17

 

Laura Kaye - author picAbout Laura Kaye:

Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of thirty books in contemporary and erotic romance and romantic suspense, including the Blasphemy, Hard Ink, and Raven Riders series. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. Laura also writes historical fiction as the NYT bestselling author, Laura Kamoie. She lives in Maryland with her husband and two daughters, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.

 

 

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Midnight Untamed (Midnight Breed #14.5), by Lara Adrian

14 Oct

 

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Format: e-ARC, 120 pages

Publisher: Evil Eye Concepts, Inc.

Published: October 11, 2016

ASIN: B0197OZW7A

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Back cover blurb: The mission was supposed to be simple. Infiltrate an enemy’s stronghold outside Rome and eliminate its leader. For a Breed warrior as lethal as Ettore Selvaggio, AKA “Savage”, stealth assassinations are only one of his many cold-hearted specialties. But the last thing Savage expects to find behind enemy lines—in his target’s bed—is a woman he once adored.

It’s been years since Savage last saw beautiful Arabella Genova. Years he’s strived to banish to his past, along with the fierce desire he once felt toward Bella . . . and the irresistible calling of her blood that stirs in him even now, despite the fact that she belongs to another male.

But when fate throws Savage and Bella together again in a race for their lives, will his long-lost love prove to be the one woman he can’t live without, or the perfect weapon to destroy him?

My review: Lara Adrian’s latest contribution to the 1001 Dark Nights series continues the Midnight Breed stories set in Italy, this time with Order warrior Savage. I loved him in the previous novellas, and here he finds himself in the middle of an assassination job when he sees the love of his life, Arabella, a Breedmate whose family forced him to leave her 10 years earlier. Saving her risks his mission but, as we know with these warriors, they place a priority on rescuing women and children, and he ends up doing both before the night is over.

Adrian always writes a great, hot romance, and there are plenty of thrilling moments with the ongoing battle against the Red Dragon drug. I was also intrigued by Scythe and hope we see more of him and Trygge in the books to come.

This novella can be read as a standalone or out of order in the series – as I have read it – as long as you are aware of a bit of the Breed history and know about the 20-year time jump between books 10 and 11. I really must catch up on the ones I own but haven’t read yet. This series is fabulous and it just keeps getting better!

***Disclaimer: This e-ARC was provided to me by the publisher via InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to them. ***

My rating: 5/5

5cupcakes

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I’m thrilled to be part of the Review & Excerpt Tour for MIDNIGHT UNTAMED by Lara Adrian, a novella in her Midnight Breed Series brought to you by 1001 Dark Nights. Grab your copy of this sexy novella today!

Book trailer: https://s3.amazonaws.com/embed.animoto.com/play.html?w=swf/production/vp1&e=1475604408&f=8l51MQrU143hd56W0kagqw&d=0&m=p&r=360p+720p&volume=100&start_res=720p&i=m&asset_domain=s3-p.animoto.com&animoto_domain=animoto.com&options=
Direct Link: https://video214.com/play/8l51MQrU143hd56W0kagqw/s/dark

 

lara-adrian-headshotAbout Lara Adrian:

Lara Adrian is the New York Times, USA Today and #1 internationally bestselling author ofthe Midnight Breed vampire romance series and seven award-winning, historical romances, previously released under the pen name Tina St. John.

Lara’s Midnight Breed series is available in hardcover, mass market paperback and e-book through Random House, and in limited edition through Doubleday Book Club, Rhapsody Book Club, Book of The Month, and the Science Fiction Book Club. Unabridged audio editions are available through Tantor Media, Random House Audio, Amazon, iTunes, etc. Lara’s new releases regularly appear on all of the key bestseller lists including the New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, Indiebound, Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, etc. There are more than 2 million copies of the Midnight Breed novels in print in the United States.

 

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Lara Adrian’s MIDNIGHT UNTAMED – Review & Excerpt Tour Schedule:

October 12th

Hart’s Romance Pulse – Excerpt

2OCC Reviews – Review

A Fortress of Books – Review

Coffee Books Life – Review & Excerpt

Shayna Renee’s Spicy Reads – Review & Excerpt

Nice Ladies, Naughty Books – Excerpt

Reading in Pajamas – Excerpt

October 13th

Adria’s Romance Reviews – Review

Books That Hook – Review & Excerpt

Books,Dreams,Life – Excerpt

Evermore Books – Review & Excerpt

That’s What I’m Talking About – Review

Straight Shootin’ Book Reviews – Review

Hannah’s Words – Review & Excerpt

October 14th

Books, Coffee & Passion – Excerpt

Majorly Delicious – Review

Tome Tender – Excerpt

Books, Baking and Other Objects of Beauty – Review

Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews – Review & Excerpt

K&J Book Promotions – Excerpt

October 15th

Lucky 13 – Excerpt

The Reading Cafe – Review & Excerpt

Diane’s Book Blog – Review

Reading Between the Wines Book Club – Excerpt

Vagabonda Reads – Review & Excerpt

October 16th

Ramblings From This Chick – Excerpt

Loves Great Reads Blog – Review & Excerpt

Nerdy Dirty & Flirty – Review

Sofia Loves Books – Review

October 17th

Literary Misfit – Review & Excerpt

Rantings of a Reading Addict – Review & Excerpt

SnoopDoo’s Book Reviews – Excerpt

Rock Out With Sweet Reads – Excerpt

October 18th

Booknista – Review & Excerpt

Angel’s Guilty Pleasures – Excerpt

Read-Love-Blog – Excerpt

Feeling Fictional – Review & Excerpt

Wicked Babes Blog Reviews – Review

GraveTells – Excerpt

October 19th

Becky on Books – Excerpt

The Romance Reviews – Review

Queen of All She Reads – Excerpt

Lynn’s Romance Enthusiasm – Excerpt

The Silver Dagger Scriptorium – Review & Excerpt

BFD Book Blog – Review & Excerpt

October 20th

G & T’s Indie Café – Excerpt

KatyaRath – Review & Excerpt

Knotty Girl Reviews – Review

Romance Reviews and More – Review & Excerpt

Bookgatherer – Excerpt

October 21st

Romancing the Readers – Review

EskieMama Reads – Excerpt

What Is That Book About – Excerpt

Shelf Life – Review

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Fire and Rain (Rising Storm Season 2, Episode 5), by R.K. Lilley

10 Oct

31681620Format: e-ARC, 79 pages

Publisher: Evil Eye Concepts, Inc

Published: September 27, 2016

ASIN: B01KGGHV4A

Genre: Romance

Back cover blurb: Secrets, Sex and Scandals …

Welcome to Storm, Texas, where passion runs hot, desire runs deep, and secrets have the power to destroy… Get ready. The storm is coming.

As Celeste Salt continues to unravel in the wake of Jacob’s death, Travis grows closer with Kristin. Lacey realizes the error of her ways but is afraid it’s too late for reconciliation with her friends. Marcus and Brittany struggle with the continued fallout of Hector’s return, while Chase and Anna Mae face some hard truths about their past…   

My review: This is the raunchiest episode so far this season. Marcus and Brittany finally get some alone time, and I’m certainly rooting for them to have a HEA. Things look pretty bleak at the Alvarez house, but at least Joanne is having moments where she stands up for herself. There’s hope there, and also with the possible thawing of relations between Mallory and Lacey, and with Dakota finally questioning her father’s behaviour. I’m not a fan of the Travis/Kristen storyline, but something’s going to have to be done to snap Celeste out of her grief.

R.K. Lilley is new to the series and a new author for me. Her writing fitted into the series seamlessly. Keen to get on to the next installment.

***Disclaimer: This e-ARC was provided to me by the publisher via InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to them. ***

My rating: 5/5

5cupcakes

 

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Lightning Strikes (Rising Storm Season 2, Episode 4), by Lexi Blake

6 Oct

31681626Format: e-ARC, 81 pages

Publisher: Evil Eye Concepts, Inc

Published: September 27, 2016

ASIN: B01KGGHT92

Genre: Romance

Back cover blurb: Secrets, Sex and Scandals …

Welcome to Storm, Texas, where passion runs hot, desire runs deep, and secrets have the power to destroy… Get ready. The storm is coming.

As Ian Briggs begins to fall for Marisol, Joanne and Dillon also grow closer. Joanne’s new confidence spreads to Dakota but Hector’s return upends everything. A public confrontation between Marcus and Hector endangers his relationship with Brittany, and Dakota reverts to form. Meanwhile, the Senator threatens Ginny and the baby…  

My review: The lightning of the title is Hector Alvarez, and he certainly times his strike well as he returns to Storm to create havoc. Dakota was almost becoming bearable, and Joanne and Dillon were just starting to get somewhere, not to mention how well Marcus’ life was improving, but now Hector is back Joanne has returned to her subservient role and Dakota is immediately back in brat mode. This is a great episode from Lexi Blake, and I’m eagerly going straight in to the next one.

***Disclaimer: This e-ARC was provided to me by the publisher via InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to them. ***

My rating: 5/5

5cupcakes

 

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Brave the Storm (Rising Storm Season 2, Episode 3), by Lisa Mondello

30 Sep

31681623Format: e-ARC, 92 pages

Publisher: Evil Eye Concepts, Inc

Published: September 27, 2016

ASIN: B01KGGHWSU

Genre: Romance

Back cover blurb: Secrets, Sex and Scandals …

Welcome to Storm, Texas, where passion runs hot, desire runs deep, and secrets have the power to destroy… Get ready. The storm is coming.

As Senator Rush’s poll numbers free fall, Marylee tries to drive a wedge between Brittany and Marcus. Across town, Anna Mae and Chase dance toward reconciliation. Ginny longs for Logan, while he fights against Sebastian’s maneuvering. And Hector, newly freed from prison, heads back to Storm…   

My review: A bit of a filler episode, mostly focusing on Chase and Anna Mae. Although the pacing of this one was slower, I quite enjoyed their storyline even though it was easily predicted. The addition of Patsy was very cute! Elsewhere in Storm, things are plodding along. I think I can see where Max, Jacob’s old roommate, and his friend Scott are going to fit in. I did miss Ian in this episode, but the ending was a doozy.  

***Disclaimer: This e-ARC was provided to me by the publisher via InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to them. ***

My rating: 3/5

3cupcakes

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