Blog Tour

★BLOG TOUR, REVIEW & EXCERPT★ PLAY ON BY SAMANTHA YOUNG

Genres: Contemporary Romance

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PLAY ON by Samantha Young

Release Date: 12th September 2017

Nora O’Brien chased a dream from Indiana to Scotland, so sure it was the right thing to do. Three years later she was left in her adopted country with nothing to her name but guilt and regret.

Until Aidan Lennox entered her life.

Older, worldlier, a music producer and composer, the sexy Scot should never have made sense for Nora. But somehow in each other they found the light they were looking for, the laughter and the passion—the strength to play on despite their past losses.

But when life dealt Aidan another unlucky hand, instead of reaching for her he disappeared. The agonizing loss of him inspired something within Nora. It fired her spirit— the anger and hurt pushing her forward to take control and reach for her dreams.

Finally pursuing a career on stage while she put herself through college, everything is how Nora wants it. She’s avoiding heartbreak and concentrating on her goals.
Sounds easy but it’s not. Because Aidan is back. And for some reason he hates Nora.

He’s determined to be at war with her.

And she has absolutely no idea why.

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Despite Seonaid’s warning that I couldn’t keep my feelings bottled up, I tried very hard to convince myself that I was okay with how things had played out with Aidan. That I needed to be okay so I could go on living my life in perfect contentment. While he gallivanted around the theater with his beautiful women and horse-assery.

Finding my Zen, however, was proving more difficult than I’d thought. I was a bundle of confused feelings. At war with myself.

So it wasn’t any wonder I reacted the exact opposite of how I’d hoped when Aidan finally confronted me in private.

Having to meet up with another student to work on an assignment we had for a tutorial, I hadn’t seen any point in heading home to Sighthill only to have to return to Tollcross for rehearsal. I’d grabbed a salad from a shop on Potterrow, and walked to the theater. I was ninety minutes early so no one was there. Thankfully, Quentin was usually at the theater during the day so the doors were open. When I got inside the auditorium, however, it was pitch black.

“Quentin?” I called out. “Are you here?”

My voice echoed.

Nothing.

“Anyone?”

But the silence told me I was alone. I wondered if Quentin had accidentally left the theater unlocked. I’d need to let him know.

Switching on the stage lights to make me not feel like I was about to become part of a horror movie, I found my way into an empty dressing room.

Eating my salad, I worked on a paper, waiting for the minutes to tick by.

A noise far off in the distance made me still like a rabbit caught in headlights. I cocked my head, listening, and sure enough, footsteps approached. Blood rushed in my ears as my pulse raced. I then cursed myself for being freaked out when it was obviously a cast member who was—I glanced at my watch—an hour early.

I waited, and the dressing room door I had left slightly ajar squeaked open.

My breath caught at the sight of Aidan filling the doorway.

He crossed his arms and his ankles and leaned against the jamb, staring at me dispassionately.

All I could do was stare back, my emotions whirling in a mess of feelings, like a tornado, with no thought to what it was sucking up into its wind funnel. “What are you doing here?” I finally said, my voice hoarse.

“I was sitting in the coffee shop across the way and I saw you come in.”

“You followed me?”

“I argued with myself about it for a while. But aye.”

Adrenaline coursed through me and made my hands shake. I curled them into fists and hoped I looked back at him with as much boredom as he was bestowing upon me. “Why?”

“Curiosity.” He shrugged.

“Curiosity?”

“Were you always such a heartless robot and I was just too fucking blind to see it?”

I flinched, knowing this was the moment I should tell him that Laine had lied to me. But I couldn’t get the words out. I wanted to and I didn’t want to.

So fear of him hating me and fear of him loving me left me in some kind of exasperated, frustrated no-man’s land. I shot to my feet. “If you came here to use me as your emotional punching bag, you can leave,” I hissed.

His eyes flashed and he pushed off the jamb, coming into the room. For the first time, I hated that I had to tip my head back to look up at him. “Not before I tell you what I really think of you, Nora, instead of hiding it behind the subterfuge of giving a fuck what happens with this play.”

“Aidan—”

“You are the biggest coward I’ve ever met in my life. You’re weak and emotionally defunct. What’s worse is how fucking manipulative you are—”

“Aidan—”

“I’ve never met anyone who had me so fucking fooled!” His chest heaved as his cool fled in the wake of his rage. “You lied and strung me along, fled when the going got tough, not once but goddamn twice, and I’m the idiot who let you do that to me.”

“Aidan—”

“But rest assured, Nora, you are the last woman who is ever going to make a fool out of me. I see you now. Who you really are. A fucked-up, selfish, self-involved, immature little—”

Whatever horrible thing he was going to call me next, I swallowed it in my kiss. Unable to bear his contempt any longer, but not knowing how to make it stop, I went with my gut.

And my gut told him to grab his T-shirt in my fists and use it to haul him down to my mouth.

What a mistake.

Because I remembered him now.

I remembered how beautiful he felt.

So when his hands gripped my forearms and tried to pry me off, I let him, only to slide my arms around his neck and cling on tighter, kissing him in desperation.

He grunted and grabbed my arms again and just as I feared he would shove me away, he broke. Aidan jerked me closer, his mouth opening under mine, his tongue searching for my tongue.

Quite abruptly, he was in charge.

 

If I ever deemed to make a list of favourite authors and reads, there’s no doubt Samantha Young and On Dublin Street would be on it. I remember naively thinking I would read a few chapters before bed, and then next realizing it was 4AM and wisely deciding stopping before I’d finished was not an option.

PLAY ON is a story that takes us back to Scotland, and back to the conflicted characters of Sam’s that I love so much. Nora O’Brien is an eighteen-year-old American girl who has lived the emotional heartache of someone twice her age. She’s left so much behind in Indiana, and is hopeful that her new life will bring her a sense of belonging and peace.

For those who “know” Nora, know that there’s a sense of unavailability to her. It’s a defense mechanism of hers and whether she accepts or not, it holds her back from forming meaningful relationships. It’s a defense she thinks has served her well until she meets a man who penetrates her amour and sets about an irrevocable chain reaction that forces her to confront the past she has run from.

So heartfelt in it’s telling PLAY ON is story of self-discovery and acceptance. As well as the story I enjoyed the imagery and pride that shone through when Samantha describes the backdrop of her story, Scotland. I’ve been lucky enough to visit and it’s every bit as beautiful as she describes.


 

About Samantha Young:

Samantha Young is the New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of adult contemporary romances, including the On Dublin Street series and Hero, as well as the New Adult duology Into the Deep and Out of the Shallows. Every Little Thing, the second book in her new Hart’s Boardwalk series, will be published by Berkley in March 2017. Before turning to contemporary fiction, she wrote several young adult paranormal and fantasy series, including the amazon bestselling Tale of Lunarmorte trilogy. Samantha’s debut YA contemporary novel The Impossible Vastness of Us will be published by Harlequin TEEN in ebook & hardback June 2017

Samantha has been nominated for the Goodreads Choice Award 2012 for Best Author and Best Romance for On Dublin Street, Best Romance 2014 for Before Jamaica Lane, and Best Romance 2015 for Hero. On Dublin Street, a #1 bestseller in Germany, was the Bronze Award Winner in the LeserPreis German Readers Choice Awards for Best Romance 2013, Before Jamaica Lane the Gold Medal Winner for the LeserPreis German Readers Choice Awards for Best Romance 2014 and Echoes of Scotland Street the Bronze Medal Winner for the LeserPreis German Readers Choice Awards for Best Romance 2015.

Samantha is currently published in 30 countries and is a #1 international bestselling author.

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★BLOG TOUR, REVIEW, EXCERPT★ CAN’T HARDLY BREATHE BY GENA SHOWALTER

Genres: Contemporary Romance

From New York Times Bestselling author Gena Showalter, comes the next standalone romance in the Original Heartbreakers Series—CAN’T HARDLY BREATHE!

New York Times bestselling author Gena Showalter returns with an irresistible Original Heartbreakers story about a woman who’s never felt desired and the man who wants her more than air to breathe…

Bullied in high school, Dorothea Mathis’s past is full of memories she’d rather forget. But there’s one she can’t seem to shake—her longstanding crush on former Army Ranger Daniel Porter. Now that the sexy bad boy has started using her inn as his personal playground, she should kick him out…but his every heated glance makes her want to join him instead.

Daniel returned to Strawberry Valley, Oklahoma to care for his ailing father and burn off a little steam with no strings attached. Though he craves the curvy Dorothea night and day, he’s as marred by his past as she is by hers. The more he desires her, the more he fears losing her.

But every sizzling encounter leaves him desperate for more, and soon Daniel must make a choice: take a chance on love or walk away forever.

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Hands trembling, she hooked the vacuum to the cart and rolled the cargo to the supply room…where her younger sister Holly was smoking a cigarette.

Coughing, Dorothea claimed the cigarette and stubbed the tip into an ashtray.

“Hey!” Eighteen-year-old Holly glared at her. “I wasn’t done.”

“You mean you weren’t done giving our guests lung cancer and stinking up the inn?”

“Exactly.” Ever the smart aleck, Holly tossed a piece of gum in her mouth and popped a bubble in Dorothea’s face. “Besides, we don’t really have guests, now, do we? Since you took over, only four people have stayed here. Mayor Trueman and his side slice, and Daniel Porter and whatever bimbo he happens to be banging.”

Not true! A few months ago, Dorothea had hired Harlow Glass, and everyone in town had rented a room to witness the former bully’s downfall.

Good times.

Dorothea hadn’t wanted to like Harlow, but dang it, something bad had happened to the girl in the years since

high school, and she’d changed. More than that, Harlow had done everything in her power to make amends, and eventually Dorothea had warmed up to her.

Now the beautiful brunette was married to reformed playboy Beck Ockley. The happy couple were expecting their first child in a few months.

A razor-sharp pang cut through Dorothea. Won’t think about my own—

Nope. Slam the breaks.

To ward off the oncoming pity party, she drew in a deep breath…slowly released it… Good, that was good.

She focused on her sister. Holly had pinned back the sides of her jet-black hair, the remaining locks tumbling all the way to the metal links anchored around her biceps. She’d paired a crimson corset top—her first pop of color in months—with a ruffled black skirt, ripped fishnet stockings and combat boots caked with mud Dorothea would have to clean from the floors.

In a town as small as Strawberry Valley, Oklahoma, Holly was a legend. Unique.

“My inn, my rules,” Dorothea said. “No smoking. Ever.” Besides, she suspected the teenager only ever lit up to aggravate her. Not once had Dorothea witnessed an actual puff.

“You’re worse than a Mogwai that’s been fed after midnight.”

A Gremlins reference? Seriously?

“No wonder Jazz left you,” her sister added.

Air hissed between her teeth. Holly might hate her guts, but the teenager loved to insult her, and this barb hit harder than most.

Rather than waiting for love, as Dorothea had dreamed, she’d settled for companionship, marrying the first guy to pay attention to her. Worse, she’d believed his words rather than his actions. I adore you and only want what’s best for you…for us.

4 STARS

From the outset I could tell I was really going to enjoy CAN’T HARDLY BREATHE. We’re introduced to a teenage Dorothea Mathis, she’s had a horrible time at school so far, but she’s positive and upbeat that this will be her year. When her tormentor sets her sights on her it soon becomes apparent she’s due for another year of ridicule, except this time her object of desire Daniel Porter comes to her defence.

Any visions of falling into one another’s arms are quickly quashed when Dorothea is the accidental voyeur to Daniel hooking up with another girl. Although heartbreaking for her, it serves as a reminder that boys like him don’t go for girls like her.

Years later and Dorothea back in Town to help run the family Inn. A failed marriage and stalled career behind her, it’s easy to see why she’s down in the dumps about things. That is until the object of her teenage affection rents a room in her Inn. She’s not the naive school girl she once was so if he thinks he can charm her with one of his smouldering looks, he’s got another thing coming.

Daniel’s primary reason for being home is help look after his father. He struggles with guilt for being away so long, but more seriously he suffers from the residual effects of being in the Army. Daniel doesn’t need distractions which is why he finds himself frustrated he can’t get his cute Inn keeper out of his head. He’s reluctant to start anything serious, but Dorothea quickly sets him straight. Any notions of having his cake and eating it are off the menu.

Here’s where the fun really starts. Who knew that Daniel had it in him to be so incredibly sweet? He really did well raking up the swoons from me. And Dorothea? Talk about under selling yourself. She has great comedic value and a much loved snarky streak.

CAN’T HARDLY BREATHE is a banter filled, cat and mouse chase and I enjoyed every cheesy moment of it. I absolutely love it when the tables turn, and Dorothea certainly did  fantastic job of making Daniel work for it.

 

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About Gena Showalter:

Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of the spellbinding Lords of the Underworld and Angels of the Dark series, two young adult series–Everlife and the White Rabbit Chronicles–and the highly addictive Original Heartbreakers series. In addition to being a National Reader’s Choice and two time RITA nominee, her romance novels have appeared in Cosmopolitan (Red Hot Read) and Seventeen magazine, she’s appeared on Nightline and been mentioned in Orange is the New Black–if you ask her about it, she’ll talk for hours…hours! Her books have been translated in multiple languages.

She’s hard at work on her next novel, a tale featuring an alpha male with a dark side and the strong woman who brings him to his knees. You can learn more about Gena, her menagerie of rescue dogs, and all her upcoming books at genashowalter.com or Facebook.com/genashowalterfans

 

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★BLOG TOUR & REVIEW★ WILD CARD BY KARINA HALLE

Genres: Contemporary Romance

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Wild Card, an all-new contemporary STANDALONE by New York Times Bestselling author Karina Halle is available NOW!!!

Wild Card AMAZON

Wild Card by Karina Halle
Release Date:
August 15th
Genre:
Contemporary Romance

Wild Card is a standalone novel and the first book in the North Ridge Trilogy about rough and rugged Canadian mountain men, the Nelson brothers. Canada’s never felt so hot.

She swore she’d never go back home.

She swore she’d never see the man who broke her all those years ago.

But you don’t always get to choose your path.

And sometimes that path is as wild and rugged as the heart.

Rachel Waters thought she saw the last of the small mountain town of North Ridge, British Columbia, when she left six years ago. But while her advertising career blossomed beneath the skyscrapers of Toronto, her mother’s sudden illness has the 26-year old returning to North Ridge to care for her, putting her career on hold while dealing with family secrets, regrets and unresolved goodbyes.

Shane Nelson has always been a bit of a wild card. The youngest of three brothers, Shane’s spent most of his life being underestimated and misunderstood. With his quiet intensity, classic good looks and thoughtful demeanor, he’s an enigma on horseback, managing his father’s sprawling ranch on the slopes of North Ridge.

But while Shane remains the quintessential brooding cowboy, complete with an arsenal of inner demons, all of that changes when Rachel steps back into his life.

She was the girl he pushed away.

Now she’s the girl who wishes she could leave.

Despite the odds, Shane will do everything to convince Rachel he needs a second chance that he doesn’t deserve but when the two of them head off into the wilderness together in search of lost cattle, more than just their hearts are at stake.

Whether it’s love or lives on the line, one thing is for sure: always bet on the wild card.

WildCard-AN

Read Today!

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★4 STARS★

Wild Card is the first standalone novel in the North Ridge Trilogy, and suffice to say Karina Halle surprised the hell out of me with this one. I was not expecting or prepared for the level of intensity I experienced, nor the angst that clung to the pages of this novel.

It’s billed as a second chance romance but for me it’s much more than that. It’s a story of forgiveness and redemption, as Halle takes us on a journey navigating the tatters of what was once a grandiose love.

Rachel Waters has not looked back since leaving North Ridge. Her relationship with her mother can be described as fragile at best, and when the only man she’s ever loved breaks her heart in a callous way, there is no reason for her to stay.

When word reaches Shane of Rachel’s return, it ignites the flame to the candle he has always held for her. He knows he’d be foolish to think anything could ever happen between, there’s too much water under the bridge but when he sets eyes on her the flood gates open and as foolish as it may be he’s prepared to live in hope.

There’s innocence to this story that touched me from its opening pages, and as it continued I became addicted to the hurt, the rawness of the pain six absent years could not diminish. It drove the novel and reinforced how great their love once was and inferno that still rages between them.

Wild Card is a deeply emotional and stunningly heart breaking read. I fell in love with every aspect of it, and wild horses couldn’t keep me away from what promises to be an incredible series.

 

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Meet Karina:

Karina Halle is a former travel writer and music journalist and The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Bestselling author of The Pact, Love, in English, The Artists Trilogy, Dirty Angels and over 20 other wild and romantic reads. She lives on an island off the coast of British Columbia with her husband and her rescue pup, where she drinks a lot of wine, hikes a lot of trails and devours a lot of books.

Halle is represented by the Root Literary and is both self-published and published by Simon & Schuster and Hachette in North America and in the UK.

KarinaHalle

Connect with Karina:

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★BLOG TOUR, REVIEW & EXCERPT★ ROYALLY ENDOWED BY EMMA CHASE

ROYALLY ENDOWED by Emma Chase

Series: The Royally Series Book 3

 

Logan St. James is a smoldering, sexy beast. Sure, he can be a little broody at times—but Ellie Hammond’s willing to overlook that. Because, have you seen him??

Sexy. As. Hell.

And Ellie’s perky enough for both of them.

For years, she’s had a crush on the intense, protective royal security guard—but she doesn’t think he ever saw her, not really.

To Logan, Ellie was just part of the job—a relative of the royal family he’d sworn to protect. Now, at 22 years old and fresh out of college, she’s determined to put aside her X-rated dreams of pat-downs and pillow talk, and find a real life happily ever after.

The Queen of Wessco encourages Ellie to follow in her sister’s footsteps and settle down with a prince of her own. Or a duke, a marquis…a viscount would also do nicely.

But in the pursuit of a fairy tale ending, Ellie learns that the sweetest crushes can be the hardest to let go.
***
Logan St. James grew up on the wrong side of the tracks, in a family on the wrong side of the law. But these days, he covers his tattoos and scars with a respectable suit. He’s handsome, loyal, brave, skilled with his hands and…other body parts.

Any woman would be proud to bring him home to her family.

But there’s only one woman he wants.

For years he’s watched over her, protected her, held her hair back when she was sick, taught her how to throw a punch, and spot a liar.

He dreams of her. Would lay down his life for her.

But beautiful Ellie Hammond’s off-limits.

Everybody knows the bodyguard rules: Never lose focus, never let them out of your sight, and never, ever fall in love.

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Ellie

But then the mood shifts, as if the air becomes thicker, weighted, more . . . sultry.

Because slowly, Logan sinks down to one knee in front of me—looking in my eyes the whole time. In this position, I could touch his shoulders, comb my fingers through his thick, dark hair. He’s the perfect height for me to bend down and kiss his mouth—the perfect height for him to kiss me back . . . in a lot of places.

My breath hitches. And I wonder he feels it too.

There’s a sound of tearing Velcro, and Logan takes something off his ankle—a holster, with a small silver knife, about three inches long.

“Keep this on you all the time,” he says seriously. “Just in case. If you wear a skirt, the strap will fit around your thigh.”

And I almost laugh. Most girls get a ring from a guy on his knees. I get a murder weapon. But still, it makes me feel safe . . . watched over. Like I’m something precious that deserves to be protected.

I take the knife from him, testing the surprisingly solid, heavy weight of it in my hand. I press my index finger to the tip.

Logan grabs my wrist tightly. “Careful. It’s sharp.”

There’s a small, painless nick, a tiny bead of blood, so I put my finger in my mouth, sucking.

And Logan’s watching me again.

Watching my mouth.

His chest seems to rise just a little faster, and his throat ripples when he swallows. He bends his head, curves his strong back, and then I feel his hands on my ankle, securing the strap. His touch is warm and self-assured. It’s the way he always moves—confident and experienced. Logan knows his body and he knows how to use it, in every way possible.

I almost moan. The sound is in the back of my throat, but I keep it trapped. I never knew the ankle was an erogenous zone, but it sure as hell is now. A hot pulse of pleasure streaks from Logan’s fingers on my bare skin, up my thigh, between my legs.

And I throb there, growing swollen and heavy as he keeps his hands on me.

Can he tell? Does he know? He’s so aware of everything, always so attuned, I wonder if he can sense my arousal . . . feel it in the air that clings between us.

 

★4.5 STARS★

Describing Logan St. James as a fit as f*ck bodyguard is both accurate and a gross injustice the man behind the uniform. Being raised in an underprivileged area with a family that prides itself on their rap sheet, has not stopped Logan from living a life he is proud of. His role as personal bodyguard to the Royal family is one he is honoured to do and gives him a sense of purpose in life.

By personal request of the King, Logan is asked to watch over the Queen’s younger sister, Ellie. Much like myself as a reader he is instantly amused by her quirky personality and vivaciousness. They strike up a friendship that over the years transforms into a relationship filled with angsty forbidden undertones. And I dear reader could not get enough!

Having a sister who is The Queen has opened doors Ellie had daren’t peek behind. For starters there aren’t many girls her age that have their own personal bodyguard. Far be it of Ellie to think of Logan as that though. He quickly became her friend and closest confidant, and now as young woman his role in her life has changed once again.

The slow burn in this novel is the stuff dreams are made of. I was positively itching for these two to get together, but with a chilling outside threat made against The Queen, scratching that itch could dire consequences for all.

Royally Endowed is the third edition to series which you’d think would get harder for the author to top. Instead we get more laughs, bigger swoons and a wealth of smouldering steam. In short, Emma Chase writes an utterly delightful romantic comedy that I could not put down for love nor money.


About Emma Chase:

Emma Chase is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the hot and hilarious Tangled series and The Legal Briefs series. Emma lives in New Jersey with her husband, two children and two naughty (but really cute) dogs. She has a long-standing love/hate relationship with caffeine.

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★BLOG TOUR, REVIEW & GIVEAWAY★ BEARD IN MIND BY PENNY REID

Genres: Contemporary Fiction

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Beard in Mind, an all new standalone in the bestselling, romantic comedy Winston Brothers Series by Penny Reid, is available NOW!

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All is fair in love and auto maintenance.

Beau Winston is the nicest, most accommodating guy in the world. Usually.

Handsome as the devil and twice as charismatic, Beau lives a charmed life as everyone’s favorite Winston Brother. But since his twin decided to leave town, and his other brother hired a stunning human-porcupine hybrid as a replacement mechanic for their auto shop, Beau Winston’s charmed life has gone to hell in a handbasket.

Shelly Sullivan is not nice and is never accommodating. Ever.

She mumbles to herself, but won’t respond when asked a question. She glares at everyone, especially babies. She won’t shake hands with or touch another person, but has no problems cuddling with a dog. And her damn parrot speaks only in curse words.

Beau wants her gone. He wants her out of his auto shop, out of Tennessee, and out of his life.

The only problem is, learning why this porcupine wears her coat of spikes opens a Pandora’s box of complexity—exquisite, tempting, heartbreaking complexity—and Beau Winston soon discovers being nice and accommodating might mean losing what matters most.

TEASER02

She’d taken the sofa, in her own house, and given me the bed. That didn’t make a lick of sense.

I crouched next to her, threading my fingers into the silky hair at her temples. “Honey.”

“Mmm.”

I bent to whisper, “Shelly.”

“Hmm?”

“I’m going to carry you to your bed. I’ll take the sofa.”

“Mmm.”

I grinned at her soft noises, at the untroubled expression on her face, and how her brow—even in sleep—still looked regal and stern.

Sliding my arms under her legs and shoulder, I picked her up. And, unfortunately, that woke her up.

She jerked in my arms. “What are you doing?”

“I’m taking you to the bed.”

“Don’t do that.”

“I don’t mind, I’ll take the sofa.” Our mouths were just inches apart, and hers was distracting.

She squirmed. “Put me down.”

Sighing unhappily, I did. I set her on her feet next to the couch. The blanket pooled at her feet and I stepped back to give her some space. It was dark, but I could see her just fine, and that meant I had to force my eyes to remain above her neck. The woman was wearing two pathetic scraps of fabric as pajamas. A thin little tank top and shorts. That’s it.

I set my jaw and turned to the side, waiting for her to walk past.

“Where are you?”

I glanced at her and realized she couldn’t see at all. She didn’t have a hand out, but the way her eyes were moving about the room gave away her blindness.

“I’m here.” I didn’t touch her, because if I did, I wouldn’t want to stop.

Shelly turned her head in my direction and took a deep breath. Still she didn’t reach for me. I didn’t know the specifics of what to expect after her Friday session, but I recalled Dr. West saying something about Shelly doing self-guided ERP exercises over this week.

“Can you see?” She licked her lips, her voice sandpapery. “Because I can’t see at all. It’s so dark.”

“I can see.” Unbidden, my eyes dropped to her body, to the swell of her breasts, the panel of bare stomach, the curve of her hips. Pinpricks of heat raised over my skin and I curled my hands into fists.

She shuffled forward and I caught her before she bumped into me, setting my hands gently at her waist.

“Let me take you to your room.” My voice was rough, for obvious reasons.

Saying nothing, she brought her hand to my forearm, her body gently colliding with mine. And then her hand on my arm slid up my bicep to my shoulder.

“Shelly.” I was running out of breath.

“I like this.”

“What?”

“Touching you.”

Oh fuck.

I held still and endured her hands moving over my body, down the front of my shirt, stopping at the hem, then pushing it up.

“Take this off.”

I did. I pulled the T-shirt over my head and let it drop to the floor.

We stood there, facing each other in the dark, not touching. Despite the session on Friday and the progress that had been made, I realized she wasn’t quite there yet. Dr. West was right, Friday was just a step, the first step. Shelly wasn’t able to initiate contact. Not yet.

Her hands balled into fists and she swayed forward, her breath struggling little puffs.

If anything was going to happen tonight, I had to initiate it. I had to be the one to touch first.

God, how I wanted her. How I wanted her above me, beneath me, surrounding me. But how could I?

“I know why I hesitate,” her voice was breathless, “but why do you hesitate?”

“Lots of reasons.”

“Give me one.”

“I don’t want to you use you.”

“I wish you would.”

That pulled a laugh from me, just a small relief from the mounting tension. My eyes moved over her body, an undeniable impulse to devour the sight of her, her legs, stomach, chest, then up her neck to her lips.

“You asked me on Saturday if sex was a big deal for me, or if it was you. The answer is both.”

She held very still, and I got the sense she was holding her breath, straining to listen.

“You are a big deal to me. I don’t want a fling. I don’t want a flirtation. I want promises.”

“What can I promise you?”

That you’ll love me. That I’ll be your priority.

She shifted her weight from foot to foot. A spike of anxiety that she might leave me like this had me acting without forethought. I lifted my hands to her waist again and immediately, her fingertips skimmed over skin of my lower stomach in response, making my muscles tense in hot anticipation. She grew more assertive as she caressed my sides, abdomen, ribs, chest, shoulders, and then back down.

Shelly stepped closer, a hint of thrilling contact between her breasts and my torso, and all the words and worries melted from my mind, died on my tongue, suffocated by the feel of her body, and the possibility of this moment.

Her finger hooked in the waistband of my jeans. “Take these off.” Her hand turned, her fingers and palm cupping me over my zipper.

Instinctively, I pressed myself into her touch even as I grabbed her wrist.

“Beau, I promise—”

She didn’t get to speak, because I kissed her, hard and wild, unbuttoning and unzipping my fly with one hand and bringing her palm inside my boxers with the other.

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★4 STARS

At first glance it’s easy to peg Beard in Mind as an Enemies to Lovers romance.  Shelly Sullivan is the newly employed mechanic to the Winston family run auto shop and immediately clashes with Beau. He’s affronted by her hostility to not only himself but to the shops customers. He’s a genuinely easy going individual but there’s something about Shelly that raises his hackles.

Speaking of Shelly, it would take me a while to think of the last time I came across a character as complex as herself. Credit to Penny, she took care and attention with her in the way she was written. In some ways I think she used Beaus character as a device to ask the questions I as a reader and person wanted know.

The revelations in this story are not Shelly’s alone; Beau too experiences some life changing moments and in these moments of Beau’s vulnerability, it’s wonderful to see Shelly blossom and showcase personal develop.

I’m in awe of Penny’s ability to write a swoon worthy romance whilst concurrently tackling serious current issues. Beard in Mind is conscientious and thought provoking romance which was nicely balanced by its comedic value and heart fluttering feels.

I can’t get enough of this band of bearded brothers and am looking forward to what’s in store next.

 

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Meet Penny Reid:

Penny Reid is the USA Today Bestselling Author of the Winston Brothers and Knitting in the City series. When she’s not immersed in penning smart romances, Penny works in the biotech industry as a researcher. She’s also a full time mom to three diminutive adults, wife, daughter, knitter, crocheter, sewer, general crafter, and thought ninja.

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★BLOG TOUR, EXCERPT & REVIEW★ BAD DEEDS (A DIRTY MONEY NOVEL) BY LISA RENEE JONES

Genres: Romantic Suspense

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Bad Deeds: A Dirty Money Novel by Lisa Renee Jones
Release Date: August 8th, 2017
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Would you bleed for the one you love?

To save his family empire from the grip of the drug cartel, Shane is pushed to the edge of darkness, forced to make choices he might never make. His father is dying. His brother is desperate to rule the empire and this means war and all gloves are off. His brother only thought he knew what dirty meant. Shane is about to give it new meaning. There is another war brewing though, and that one, is inside him, his battle between right and wrong, light and dark, and in the heat of the night, it is Emily he turns to for escape. Driving her to new limits, pushing her to accept a part of him that even he cannot.

In every one of Shane’s seductive demands, Emily can taste and feel, his torment, his struggle to save his family and not lose himself. But he is losing himself, and that is a problem just as dangerous as her secret, that still lurk in the shadows, a threat to the Brandon Family waiting to erupt. No matter where she and Shane have traveled, or will travel in the future, she can’t just sit back and watch him become everything he hates, everything he never wanted to become, everything she tried to save him from when she tried to run. It could be their undoing, the end. His end.

This is war, blood will spill, and someone in the heart of the Brandon family will not survive….

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“What is in your head right now?”

His eyes heat, darken. “You. Always.” He inches back and looks at me. “You’re mine. Mine to protect.” His voice is low, fierce, and he grips my panties and yanks them away. “Mine to fuck.”

I gasp and grab his shoulders. “Shane.”

His answer is to wrap his arm around my waist, pull me close, his cheek against mine, his fingers pressing into the V of my body. “Wet, just the way I like you,” he says, pressing two fingers inside me. “Wet for me. And too fucking perfect for my sanity sometimes.”

“That doesn’t sound like a compliment,” I pant out, grabbing the lapel to his suit as a sweet ache begins to build in my sex as his thumb strokes my clit.

“And no one else,” he murmurs, nipping my earlobe, “will ever touch you like this.” His fingers caress deeper inside me. “No one,” he adds, “will ever make you say their name like I want you to say mine right now. Say it.”

“Shane,” I whisper, and not because he wants me to, but rather because it’s there on my lips, the way I wish his tongue was on my lips now. “Shane, I—”

Seeming to know what I need, he cups my head and kisses me, long, slow, sensual strokes of his tongue that somehow make every touch of his fingers more intense.

“Come for me,” he murmurs, and this time when he kisses me, I start climbing that wall to release, and I’m there at the top in an instant. I stiffen while his fingers and tongue tease, please, and then I jerk, I’m over it, tumbling in an instant into shudders and shakes. Shane’s lips lift from mine as he breathes with me. His fingers slow as he eases me through the waves until I collapse against his chest.

He tangles his fingers in my hair and drags my mouth back to his. “And no one but me will ever make you come like that again,” he declares, the waves of his emotions beating down any embarrassment I might feel over having had an orgasm on his father’s desk.

“No one has ever made me feel what you make me feel, Shane.”

Bad Deeds Available

 

★4 STARS

When I think cleverly written sexy suspense, I think Lisa Renee Jones. Her Dirty Money series is one that sustains it’s intrigue, all the while building on the seductive romance between Shane and Emily.

Fans of the series will enjoy developments to the story as we see Shane delve deeper into the murky waters he adamantly vowed to avoid, and the temporary or not transformation to his relationship with his family.

As can be counted Lisa leaves us on another high octane moment guaranteeing we’ll want to stick around for the End Game.

 

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About the Author:

Lisa Renee Jones

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Lisa Renee Jones is the author of the highly acclaimed INSIDE OUT series. Suzanne Todd (producer of Alice in Wonderland) on the INSIDE OUT series: Lisa has created a beautiful, complicated, and sensual world that is filled with intrigue and suspense. Sara’s character is strong, flawed, complex, and sexy – a modern girl we all can identify with.

In addition to the success of Lisa’s INSIDE OUT series, Lisa has published many successful titles. The TALL, DARK AND DEADLY series and THE SECRET LIFE OF AMY BENSEN series, both spent several months on a combination of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling lists. Lisa is also the author of the bestselling DIRTY MONEY and WHITE LIES series. Presently, Lisa is working on her Murder Girl/Lilah Love series to be published by Montlake.

Prior to publishing Lisa owned multi-state staffing agency that was recognized many times by The Austin Business Journal and also praised by the Dallas Women’s Magazine. In 1998 Lisa was listed as the #7 growing women owned business in Entrepreneur Magazine.

Lisa loves to hear from her readers. You can reach her at http://www.lisareneejones.com and she is active on Twitter and Facebook daily.

 

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★BLOG TOUR & REVIEW★ THE BRIGHTEST SUNSET BY ALY MARTINEZ

Genres: Contemporary Romance

The Brightest Sunset by Aly Martinez was everything! This is the conclusion of a must-read contemporary romance duet, and is it available to read for FREE on KindleUnlimited!

The Brightest Sunset (The Darkest Sunrise Duet, #2)

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Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never harm me.

Bullshit.

Words destroyed me.

“I’m sorry. She didn’t make it.”

“Daddy, he can’t breathe!”

“There’s nothing more we can do for your son.”

Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never harm me.

Lies.

Those syllables and letters became my executioner. I told myself that, if I didn’t acknowledge the pain and the fear, they would have no power over me. But, as the years passed, the hate and the anger left behind began to control me.

Two words—that was all it took to plunge my life into darkness.

“He’s gone.”

In the end, it was four soft, silky words that gave me hope of another sunrise.

“Hi. I’m Charlotte Mills.”

★4 STARS★

The Darkest Sunrise is the devastatingly climatic conclusion to a story that has riveted me from its very first page. With the shocking developments made in The Darkest Sunrise, Aly did not disappoint in plunging us over the precipice, and in doing so, continuing the gripping roller-coaster of emotions.

The combination of drama and romance was heighted by the vein of heartbreak that flowed throughout the story. As a reader that was fully invested in this couple, I was moved by the repercussions of a fracture which threatened to shatter their foundation.

The sombre mood of this half of the duet is juxtaposed by the raucous urgency for a resolution. I was torn and pulled in different directions, and I dared to predict how it would end. Although there were times I felt it moved a little slowly, I love the story Aly created and developed, and it’s no surprise it will be on list of favourites for the year.

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The Darkest Sunrise (The Darkest Sunrise Duet, #1)

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You won’t want to miss this amazing series!

———————

AUTHOR INFORMATION:

Originally from Savannah, Georgia, USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez now lives in South Carolina with her four young children.

Never one to take herself too seriously, she enjoys cheap wine, mystery leggings, and baked feta. It should be known, however, that she hates pizza and ice cream, almost as much as writing her bio in the third person.

She passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a super-sized tumbler of wine by her side.

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★BLOG TOUR & REVIEW★ THE DARKEST SUNRISE BY ALY MARTINEZ

I’m so excited to be sharing the release for The Darkest Sunrise by Aly Martinez with you. It is the first book in a contemporary romance duet, and is it available to read for FREE on KindleUnlimited!

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

The Darkest Sunrise (The Darkest Sunrise Duet, #1)

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Buy it Now:

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Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never harm me.

Whoever coined that phrase is a bald-faced liar. Words are often the sharpest weapon of all, triggering some of the most powerful emotions a human can experience.

“You’re pregnant.”

“It’s a boy.”

“Your son needs a heart transplant.”

Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never harm me.

Lies.

Syllables and letters may not be tangible, but they can still destroy your entire life faster than a bullet from a gun.

Two words—that was all it took to extinguish the sun from my sky.

“He’s gone.”

For ten years, the darkness consumed me.

In the end, it was four deep, gravelly words that gave me hope of another sunrise.

“Hi. I’m Porter Reese.”

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★5 STARS★

If I may boldly say, this is Aly Martinez at her best. Phenomenal in her storytelling, The Darkest Sunrise is a raw and highly emotive portrayal of two strangers bound together by their grief.

In many ways it reminded me of the poem “Soul meets soul on lovers lips” by Percy Bysshe Shelley. Granted it’s the unstemmed pain which flows though them that is the source of the recognition they share, but in this pain is the beginning of an unlikely but pure and honest relationship that blossoms.

It’s a book that already received much praise and after reading I too am among those showering Ms Martinez with adulation. She drives the story in such a way the reader is invested from the outset and such is the pay off i’m left in desperate need to the conclusion.

For those going in I would say to forget the hype and take it as it comes. If you receive it like I did, you’ll surely want NEED more.

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The Brightest Sunset (The Darkest Sunrise Duet, #2)

Coming July 27th

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You won’t want to miss this amazing series!

———————

AUTHOR INFORMATION:

Originally from Savannah, Georgia, USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez now lives in South Carolina with her four young children.

Never one to take herself too seriously, she enjoys cheap wine, mystery leggings, and baked feta. It should be known, however, that she hates pizza and ice cream, almost as much as writing her bio in the third person.

She passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a super-sized tumbler of wine by her side.

AUTHOR LINKS:

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★BLOG TOUR, EXCERPT & REVIEW★ ALL I AM: DREW’S STORY BY JODI ELLEN MALPAS

Genres: Contemporary Romance

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All I Am, an all-new story in the This Man Series from Jodi Ellen Malpas is available now!!

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Note from Jodi:

I’ve been revisiting a few old friends. You remember Drew? The dark, mysterious pal of Jesse’s? The cool guy, who kept himself to himself? Yes, him! It’s time for Drew to shine in a brand-spanking-new THIS MAN Novella coming June 18th! I can’t tell you how much fun I’ve had going back to my roots, and I just know you’re gonna LOVE Mr Davies. I hope a little something while you’re waiting for THE FORBIDDEN (Aug 8th) will put a smile on your face as wide as mine ☺

ALLIAM

A new novella featuring Drew from the #1 New York Times bestselling This Man trilogy!

Title: All I Am (This Man #3.5) by Jodi Ellen Malpas
Publication Date: June 18th, 2017
Genre: Contemporary Romance

I thought I had control. I was so, so wrong . . .

I don’t need a relationship.

I have Hux, a decadent club where I quench whatever raw desire I choose. I take pleasure and I give it—no strings attached. So when Raya Rivers comes in asking for someone cold, emotionless, and filthy . . . well, no man ever takes his wicked pleasure quite the way I do.

Only Raya is different. Vulnerable. And carrying some deep sorrow that gets past all my carefully constructed walls and inexplicably makes me care. Now craving controls me. Ice has given way to red-hot need.

But Raya has no idea about my other life—my real life. That I’m a daddy to an adorable little girl.

My two worlds are about to collide with the force of a supernova. And once Raya knows the truth, will she be able to accept all I am?

‘What do you want, Raya?’

She steps toward me tentatively, as if she’s questioning what she’s doing. And when she reaches me, her chest pressed to mine, she gazes up at me. ‘I don’t know.’ Her eyes are wild and unsure. ‘But I know that every time we’re close, something powerful takes over. And you’re trying hard to fight it. You’re warm and cold. What are you scared of?’

‘You.’ My mouth is on her before I can think better of it, and I’ve lifted her from her feet before my tongue breaches the seam on her lips. We should talk, but this is the only thing I know what to say right now, and when her arms circle my shoulders, her mouth opening up, inviting me in, I know she’s okay with it. I know she gets it.

With one arm around her waist holding her to me and one secured on the nape of her neck, I walk to my office, my kiss deep, my blood racing, my heart bouncing off my ribcage. I set her on her feet and take the hem of her dress, pulling it up over her head, losing her lips for just a second in the process. She wrenches my shirt open, scattering buttons in the process, her hands immediately finding my skin beneath. My forward steps encourages her backwards, our kiss deepening as she unfastens my trousers and I push her knickers down her thighs.

We’re all over the place, desperation getting the better of us, a mess of tongues, hands and bodies. I pull some strength from nowhere, seize her hands and break our kiss, breathing heavily. Her unsure brown eyes soon prompts me to start ridding myself of the rest of my clothes, all under her watchful gaze. Until I’m naked.

‘This wasn’t supposed to happen,’ she whispers.

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When I think of Jodi Ellen Malpas, I automatically think to her This Man series. It’s one that sticks out in my mind for a few of reasons, but namely the one and only Lord of the Manor, Jesse Ward. By default anything with a mere association to the series has my interest, so of course I was only too happy revisit the gang.

Without giving away too much of what we already know about Drew, we understand his justification for the way in which he is guarded. He chooses a lifestyle where his intimacies are purely carnal and take place at a BDSM club. It’s the last place he would look to find a meaningful relationship, but we all know what happens when you least expect something.

Like Drew, Raya is looking for release without attachments. More mysterious in reasons, Drew tells himself it’s not his place or within his interests to discover them. She’s a means to an end until he’s consumed with thoughts of beginning a life with her in it.

A wonderful highlight to this novella was the welcomed addition of Jesse and Sam. In addition to the  conflict and drama they brought some real loud out moments, not too mention “awws” from Drew’s young daughter.

ALL I AM nicely set up the story from Jodi and all eyes are on THE FORBIDDEN which releases in August.

June 14th teaser

About Jodi:

JEM

Jodi Ellen Malpas wrote her debut series, The This Man Trilogy, in secret, worried about what people might think if they knew what her imagination was capable of. She was shocked herself. But she finally found the courage to unleash her creative streak and self-published THIS MAN – the first book of the This Man Trilogy – in October 2012. She took a chance on the story with a hero who soon became one of modern day fictions most prolific alpha male characters. Jesse Ward – also affectionately known as The Lord of The Manor, sparked incredible reactions from women across the globe and catapulted Jodi into the world of women’s fiction.

Jodi went on to self-publish the second book in the trilogy, Beneath This Man in Jan 2013, just before Grand Central Publishing, part of the Hachette Book Group, picked up the popular trilogy and the unknown Jodi. The third book of the trilogy, This Man Confessed, took Jodi to the top of the bestsellers lists, earning her the proud title of #1 New York Times Bestselling Author. This Man has since been voted one of the top romance novels of all time.

With so much love, enthusiasm and a thirst for her words from her readers, Jodi suddenly wasn’t afraid of her imagination anymore. She went on to write The One Night Trilogy with the delectable and mysterious Miller Hart, and stole the hearts of her readers once again. Her first stand-alone novel, THE PROTECTOR, released in September 2016 and has since been nominated for a Reviewers’ Choice Best Book Award. Jodi’s next stand-alone novel. THE FORBIDDEN, is set for release in August 2017.

All seven of her published novels have hit the New York Times best sellers list – as well as the Sunday Times list and various international best seller lists. Her work is now published in over 24 languages across the world.

Jodi was born and raised in the Midlands town of Northampton, England, where she lives with her two boys and a beagle. She is a self-professed daydreamer, a mojito addict, is famous for her obsession with Converse, and has a terrible weak spot for Alpha Males. Writing powerful love stories and creating addictive characters has become her passion – a passion she now shares with her devoted readers.

 

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★BLOG TOUR, GIVEAWAY & REVIEW★ HEARTS ON AIR BY L.H. COSWAY

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Hearts On Air by L.H. Cosway is live!!!

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Hearts on Air by L.H. Cosway

Series: Hearts, #6

Genre: Contemporary Romance 

3 weeks. 5 cities. 15 impossible stunts. One reality show.

Trevor Cross came into Reya Cabrera’s world with a bang and faded out with a whimper. They vowed to make it work, but life had other plans. After chasing his TV dreams for years, Trev finally became the UK’s next big reality star, but he alienated his family and friends in the process. Now he finally has everything he ever wanted. Women. Money. Fame. But none of it means anything when he doesn’t have the one thing that matters most: love.

Money leaves a gaping hole. Fame surrounds him with loneliness. And no woman makes him feel like Reya used to before the whirlwind of success pulled them apart.

He has a plan to get her back. However, with a hectic filming schedule looming, the only way to do that is to convince her to come on the road with him. Reya has been stuck in a rut for a while, and the opportunity to travel across Europe and play her music for new audiences seems like heaven. The only catch? She has to do it with the one boy who ever got close enough to break her heart. But he’s not a boy anymore, and as she gets to know him again she can’t deny her respect for the man he’s become.

Every time she’s around him her heart feels full of air, like a balloon about to pop. Little does she know, Trev’s feelings are just as tumultuous as hers. One thing’s for sure, these three weeks on the road together will either make them whole again or break them irrevocably.

**Hearts on Air is a contemporary romance and book #6 in the Hearts series, however it can also be read as a complete standalone.**


★4 STARS

I’m in slight denial that Hearts on Air marks the conclusion of a series that managed to be diverse with every novel, but still have kept it’s charm and likeability. The evolution of the brothers has been a huge highlight. As colourful as each brother is, I have to admit, it was Trev who has intrigued me the most. He’s boisterous and the epitome of a cheeky chap to the nth degree, but it’s his unlikely friendship with Reya that has always been the overriding selling point.

Trev is a larger than life character and though he has a role on a Parkour a reality TV show, Reya’s star shines just as brightly next to his. She’s independent, has a huge heart, and has always put her friendship with Trev before any other feelings she has for him. When her life stalls and an opportunity to reconnect with Trev arises they cautiously navigate through an uncertainty their relationship has never experienced before

Their story has been a long time coming, and I for one have been waiting patiently to hear it. We’ve previously seen them dance around each other in a relationship that became far more significant than friendship, and I loved the way in which Cosway told their story, but still managed to feed my anticipation as we moved between past and present.

Emotionally they tugged on my heartstrings, and as expected there were plenty of laughs courtesy of Trev. They like the series came full circle, and any sadness I had going in was replaced but how full of heart it was to read.

 

(1) A signed paperback copy of the book

(1) Swag and a $50 Amazon giftcard

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 About the author:

L.H. Cosway lives in Dublin, Ireland. Her inspiration to write comes from music. Her favourite things in life include writing stories, vintage clothing, dark cabaret music, food, musical comedy, and of course, books. She thinks that imperfect people are the most interesting kind. They tell the best stories. L.H. is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.

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