Monday, September 25, 2017

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Sunday, September 24, 2017

Book Review: Going Dark by Monica McCarty

Going Dark (The Lost Platoon #1)
By Monica McCarty
Release Date: September 5, 2017
Source: Publisher
The members of a top secret SEAL Team can't keep their passion under wraps in this thrilling contemporary romantic suspense series from New York Times bestselling author Monica McCarty.

Like Rome's Lost Legion, a SEAL platoon goes on a mission and vanishes without a trace.

After walking into a trap on a covert op in Russia, the men from top secret SEAL Team Nine are presumed dead. Not knowing whom they can trust, and with war hanging in the balance, the survivors must go dark and scatter around the globe.

Marine ecologist Annie Henderson joins her new boyfriend on a trip to the Western Isles of Scotland to protest a hazardous offshore drilling venture. When she realizes that she may be swept up in something far more dangerous than she'd intended, there is only one man she can turn to. . . .

She and the mysterious but sexy dive boat captain haven't exactly gotten off to the best start, but something about his quiet confidence makes her think that he's the kind of man she can depend on. Because he's gruff and guarded, she can tell Dan Warren has secrets. But she could never imagine how high the stakes are for him to keep his cover, even as he risks everything to protect her. . . .

When I saw that Monica McCarty was coming out with her first romantic suspense, I was so excited. I love a good action-filled romance and could not wait for this one set in Scotland! 

When Dean's top secret SEAL team walks into a trap and is presumed dead, all of the surviving men must go into hiding. Dean finds himself working on a boat in Scotland, trying to lay low and stay out of trouble. Annie Henderson is passionate about her work in marine ecology and protecting the environment, so she doesn't hesitate to join her new boyfriend in Scotland to protest offshore drilling. Enticed by their dark, brooding boat captain, Annie doesn't realize until it's too late that her boyfriend is dragging her into something that could really hurt innocent people. Annie is forced to ask the captain for help, but the captain seems to have a lot of secrets of his own. Can Annie escape the dangerous plan she's become a part of while trusting the man more mysterious than anyone she's ever met? 

I've got to say, in the beginning of this book, it was kind of hard to get in to. I wasn't interested in the back story and found it hard to find the motivation to pick this book up. Once I got over that hurtle, though, and we were brought into Annie's world with her French boyfriend just arriving in Scotland, I was sucked in. I loved how there were twists and turns thrown in regarding what Annie was really involving herself in and there were so many dangerous situations she got into with her gorgeous boat captain. Definitely a lot of action and suspense in this one! 

As for our hero Dean, I loved how strong and in control he was. I mean, he's a trained SEAL, so of course he can remain calm in all of the crazy situations he and Annie found themselves in. It was so fun how he was trying to keep his true identity from Annie, but Annie kept on noticing clues that let her know he was definitely more than he seemed. I was a bit annoyed by how naive Annie was and the mistakes she kept on making, but overall I really enjoyed how there was undeniable chemistry between them that they had to try to ignore so that they could focus on just surviving. 

Overall this was quite the enjoyable romantic suspense from Monica McCarty. I loved how this one took place in Scotland and was full of secrecy, plenty of suspense, and shocking twists. You should definitely pick it up if you like danger and a romance the main characters try to fight but just can't ignore.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Book Review: Checkmate: This is Beautiful by Kennedy Fox

Checkmate: This is Beautiful (Checkmate Duet #6)
by Kennedy Fox
Release Date: September 19, 2017
Source: Authors
The anticipated conclusion of the Logan & Kayla saga in the Checkmate Duet Series from a secret duo under the USA Today bestselling author pseudonym, Kennedy Fox!

This second-chance romance will have you gasping and cheering this two on from the first to the last page! Are you ready to play the final game? 


Kayla Sinclair is a saint and real life Angel.
She wears her heart on her sleeve and inspires me to be a better person.
Rescuing dogs, feeding the homeless, volunteering at the local food pantry are just a few of the ways she gives back to others, although no one has ever been there for her.
Falling for her was inevitable, losing her will destroy me.

Letting someone in didn't come easy, but she made me want to try for the first time in years.
Her bubbling personality and kind spirit make it impossible to forget a girl like her.
But when tragedy strikes and she loses all memory that our relationship ever existed, my worst nightmare comes to life.

I'll do anything to remind her of the love we shared. I know it'll be an uphill battle, but I won't walk away without a fight. Whoever said all is fair in love and war never played by my rules.

Checkmate, Angel.

How is this series already over? I feel like I just discovered Kennedy Fox yesterday and their fun, quirky series is coming to an end. After reading the ending of This is Dangerous, I have been DYING to read the conclusion to Kayla and Logan's story! 

Kayla Sinclair has always been on her own and felt a passion for giving back to others. The moment Logan Knight appeared in her life, Kayla couldn't help but fall hard for her knight in shining armor. But when tragedy strikes and Kayla loses all memory of ever loving Logan, Logan is devastated. Logan does everything in his power to remind Kayla of their love, but can they fall in love all over again or will they stay strangers forever? 

Of course, I was super excited to jump into this one. I always wondered why Kayla and Logan's duo was marketed as a Second Chance romance and now I know why. It was heartbreaking watching Logan have to try to make Kayla fall in love with him again and I really appreciated how realistic that plot line was. Kayla didn't just fall into Logan's arms; Kayla had to work up to even going on a date with him and even then there were many trials. I loved how Kayla got to really reevaluate her life now that she had a fresh perspective on it and really think about what she was passionate about. 

While this was super emotional and very sweet, it did still feel a little slow at times. This book was just watching Kayla and Logan get to know each other again and nothing truly exciting happened that made me want to read until I couldn't keep my eyes open. And the big mystery behind the case Logan was dealing with felt a bit of a letdown. It was still surprising, but I wanted something shocking. 

Overall, this was a super sweet conclusion to a very fun, entertaining series. All of these couples are made of each other and I love how tight-knit Viola, Courtney, and Kayla were throughout the whole series. While I'm definitely going to miss these characters, I can't wait to meet the cowboys Kennedy Fox is bringing us next!

Friday, September 22, 2017

Blog Tour: The Outskirts by T.M. Frazier


The Swamp is about to get a whole lot hotter! The Outskirts by T.M. Frazier is coming September 12th!

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The Outskirts 

by T.M. Frazier

Release Date: September 12th, 2017 
Genre: Contemporary Romance


Sawyer wants a life of her own.
Finn wants to forget he ever had one.
After a tragedy, Finn Hollis escapes
into the swamp to be alone.
That is until Sawyer Dixon shows up,
all SCORCHING HOT innocence,
claiming she owns the land less than
fifty feet from his front door.
Sawyer gets under his SKIN, but even worse?
She makes him WANT things.
Things Finn hasn’t wanted in a very very long time.
Finn WANTS Sawyer gone.
Almost as much as he wants her in his BED.
The Outskirts is Book One in the Outskirts Duet.

My throat tightened and a heaviness grew in my chest like my heart didn’t know whether to beat faster or stop beating altogether. “Did you leave me all this to show me the life you could’ve had, but didn’t? Why!?” I pounded the wheel again and then again, and again and again until my vision was blurry and all I could see was the redness of my own heated rage. “You’re a fucking coward! You fucking COWARD!” I screamed to no one, pounding on the wheel until the skin across my knuckles split and blood dripped between my fingers.
Strong hands bit into my biceps, yanking me from the cab. I was spun around by my shoulders and found myself face to face with Finn. “I like it when you swear,” he said, pressing close.
“Finn, get off me! Get off me! Let me go!” I wailed, struggling to free myself from his grip. Kicking out my legs only to connect with the air as he evaded my every move.
A growl tore from his throat. Finn picked me up and walked me to the back of the truck, setting me on the open tailgate. He pushed himself between my legs and hovered over me to keep me from leaping off.
“Let me go,” I demanded, pushing at his hard chest. “I don’t have time for your broodiness right now.”
Finn held my wrists together with one hand. “No, of course you don’t. You’re too busy tearing up pictures and screaming at no one.”
“Let me go,” I repeated.
“No,” he said between clenched teeth.
“Just go! Leave me alone. Leave meeeeeee!” I wailed as I pounded against his stone chest.
“You don’t want to hit me,” he warned, his eyes hardened.
“Then let me go.”
“Why?” He stepped in closer, unaffected by my attempt to fight against him. My inner thighs were touching his outer thighs. 
“Because she did!” I screamed, my eyes sprang open to find his cold blue gaze. “She could have run anywhere and taken me with her. Instead she left him but she left me too. She was a coward who couldn’t make the right decision and I love her. I love her…but I hate her. I hate her so much…so…” I was interrupted when Finn’s lips pressed against mine, momentarily rendering me stupid. I pointed my toes toward the sky to avoid my initial instinct which was to wrap my legs around him. It was so consuming that I momentarily forgot to fight him off, but I didn’t need to, he pulled his lips from mine.
“Stop doing that,” I said. I pushed him off but he stayed between my legs, his hands on my bare back just under the hem of his big t-shirt I was wearing. His gaze hardened. I could see the conflict written in his lined forehead and the deep V between his eyes. I had no doubt the conflict had everything to do with me.
And kissing me.
“It’s your fault that I do it,” Finn said, his voice deep and smooth against my chin and then my neck.
“So that’s your plan? Kiss me every time you want to shut me up?” I asked, still feeling every bit of my anger but also feeling something else. Something that sent tingles between my legs and an ache in my core. “Thank you for saving me. Really. Thank you. I appreciate it,” my voice cracked. “But you can just leave me alone now. And please, STOP kissing me.” My words a whisper.
“I’m going to kiss you whenever I want to kiss you,” Finn stated as if I didn’t have a say in the matter.
The early morning sunlight highlighted the beads of sweat trickling from his shoulders down his broad chest and across the valleys of his defined abs. He was standing so close that we were breathing in each other’s air.
“Whenever you want to kiss me?” I laughed. “I don’t understand you. I don’t understand any of this. You’re always mad at me. Why did you save me? Why do you keep kissing me when you’re always mad at me?”
“It’s when I’m pissed off at you that I want to kiss you the most,” Finn said, his voice flowing over my skin like a silky blanket. 


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About the Author

T.M.Frazier is a USA TODAY bestselling author. She resides in sunny Southwest Florida with her husband and her young daughter. When she’s not writing she loves talking to her readers, country music, reading and traveling. Her debut novel, The Dark Light of Day was published in September of 2013 and when she started writing it she intended for it to be a light beachy romance. Well…it has a beach in it!


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Twitter: @TM_Frazier
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Thursday, September 21, 2017

Book Review: Dark Lover by JR Ward

Dark Lover (Black Dagger Brotherhood #1)
by JR Ward
Release Date: September 6, 2005
Source: Own Copy
In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there's a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing more than Wrath, the leader of The Black Dagger Brotherhood.

The only purebred vampire left on earth, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But, when one of his most trusted fighters is killed-leaving his half-breed daughter unaware of his existence or her fate-Wrath must usher her into the world of the undead-a world of sensuality beyond her wildest dreams.

I know, I know. How am I now just reading Dark Lover? This series has been on my TBR for YEARS and I finally had the desire to pick it up and read it. The funny thing is, I was reading this book at a book signing and people who saw me reading in line told me how amazing this series is. Yeah, yeah, I know! EVERYONE has been telling me I have to read this series because of how amazing it is. All I can say is it's about time I finally read it! 

Being a vampire is dangerous business, especially with people running around trying to kill them. As the last pure-bread vampire, Wrath takes his position as the leader of the Black Dagger Brotherhood very seriously. His brothers are his family and they will do anything to protect one another and their race. When Wrath learns of a woman who is half human, half vampire and is going to change soon, he knows its his responsibility to help her through the transition. The last thing he expects, though, is to feel an almost violent attraction for her. Can Wrath bring her into his world while trying to fight the people who took his own parents from him? 

I have to say, this is a loooong book considering how not too much actually happens. While I did feel like some things dragged, once I got to about the halfway point when Beth was brought into the vampire world, things started moving. I really enjoyed how unique this vampire world was and how the vampires were in danger of being killed by their enemies. While there were tons of side characters that were a little hard to keep track of sometimes, I found myself getting excited by the idea that they would get their own romances and their own stories. 

While this was a pretty entertaining first book to a long series, I get the feeling that this was just introducing me into this world and to these characters and I will be much more into the next books in the series. I love these characters and the politics of this world and cannot wait to get to book two!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Blog Tour + Giveaway: There's Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins

There's Someone Inside Your House
by Stephanie Perkins
Release Date: September 26, 2017
Source: Publisher
Scream meets YA in this hotly-anticipated new novel from the bestselling author of Anna and the French Kiss. 
One-by-one, the students of Osborne High are dying in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasing and grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and the hunt intensifies for the killer, the dark secrets among them must finally be confronted.
International bestselling author Stephanie Perkins returns with a fresh take on the classic teen slasher story that’s fun, quick-witted, and completely impossible to put down.

When I first heard about this book, I was so excited. I never read horror or thriller novels, but, come on, it's Stephanie Perkins! I had to read it! Right before picking this up, though, I saw a few early reviews that said this wasn't everything they wanted it to be. While I did lower my expectations going in, I was still a bit disappointed with how this book turned out. 

Everything seems fine in the small town of Osborne until teens from Osborne high are being killed one by one. The slaughtered students seem to have nothing in common and everyone is in fear for their lives. Who is this killer? And who will be his next victim? 

Like I said, I lowered my expectations going into this one and tried to keep an open mind. In the beginning, the whole "thriller" part of it didn't feel so thrilling to me. I never once felt scared and at one point actually laughed out loud during a part I was pretty sure wasn't supposed to be funny that involved a murder attempting to happen. I didn't really care about any of the characters, especially Makani. She had this huge dark secret that I felt was not all that satisfying when it was revealed. I mean, that was really it? I expected this book to go all out and it was just tame and not that impressive. 

What surprised me about this book was how much it centered around the physical relationship of our main character. I mean, there was a lot of talk about sex. There weren't necessarily explicit scenes, but our main character had a really physical relationship with someone and she obsessed about it pretty much the whole book. Then, at the end, I was really disappointed with the choices Stephanie Perkins made in the last few pages when deciding who lived and who died. Everything seemed to happen way too quickly and I really didn't like the reason the killer was choosing who to murder. It seemed so anti-climatic and I just expected more. While this was more of a 2.5 star read for, I still found myself wanting to get to the end just to figure out the connection between all of the murders. 

Overall, I was definitely expecting a lot more out of this one. As a huge scaredy-cat when it comes to anything horror or scary, I never once felt any fear when reading this book. I wanted more of an edgy story that really shocked me, but instead I felt underwhelmed when I finished. If you're looking for your next thrilling, horror-filled read, I wouldn't jump for this one. 

Enter for a chance to be one (1) of three (3) winners to receive a hardcover copy of There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins. (ARV: $17.99 each).
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on September 18, 2017 and 12:00 AM on October 16, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about October 18, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

Follow the Tour!

Week One:
September 18 – Mostly YA Lit 
September 19 – Here’s to Happy Endings
September 20 – Peace Love Books
September 21 – Lost in Lit 
September 22 – Novel Novice 
Week Two:
September 25 – Stories & Sweeties
September 26 – In Wonderland
September 27 – Book Addict’s Guide 
September 28 – YA Romantics 
September 29 – Twirling Pages 
Week Three:
October 2 – Adventures of a Book Junkie 
October 3 – Oh the Book Feels 
October 4 – Andi’s ABCs 
October 6 – YA Bibliophile 
Week Four:
October 9 – ButterMyBooks 
October 10 – BookCrushin 
October 11 – The Wednesday Blog for Books         
October 12 – Swoony Boys Podcast 
October 13 – Don’t Fold the Page

Teaser Blitz: Duke of Desire by Elizabeth Hoyt

Duke of Desire
by Elizabeth Hoyt
Release Date: October 17, 2017

Refined, kind, and intelligent, Lady Iris Jordan finds herself the unlikely target of a diabolical kidnapping. Her captors are the notoriously evil Lords of Chaos. When one of the masked-and nude!-Lords spirits her away to his carriage, she shoots him . . . only to find she may have been a trifle hasty.


Cynical, scarred, and brooding, Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore, has made it his personal mission to infiltrate the Lords of Chaos and destroy them. Rescuing Lady Jordan was never in his plans. But now with the Lords out to kill them both, he has but one choice: marry the lady in order to keep her safe.


Much to Raphael's irritation, Iris insists on being the sort of duchess who involves herself in his life-and bed. Soon he's drawn both to her quick wit and her fiery passion. But when Iris discovers that Raphael's past may be even more dangerous than the present, she falters. Is their love strong enough to withstand not only the Lords of Chaos but also Raphael's own demons?

      Iris tasted of red wine—the red wine she must have drunk at dinner—and all the reasons he shouldn’t do this fled his mind. A vital chain broke in his psyche and everything he’d held back, everything he’d restrained with all his might, was suddenly set free. He surged into her mouth, desperate for the feel, for the taste of her, his wife, his duchess, his Iris. She was soft and sweet and warm and he wanted to devour her. To seize her and hold her and never let her go. The deep unfathomable well of his urges toward her frightened him, and he knew that if she became aware of them, they would frighten her as well.

      But that was the thing—she wasn’t aware of them. She thought she was simply consummating their marriage or some such rot, God help them both.
      She gripped his naked arms and the beast within him shuddered and stretched, claws scraping against the ground.
      Dear God, he wanted this woman.
      But he had to remember—to keep that human part of his mind awake and alive—that he mustn’t seed her.
      Must never do as his cursed father had done.
      He broke from her mouth, feeling the pulse of his cock against his breeches, and trailed his lips across her cheek to her ear. “Come with me, sweet girl.”
      She blinked up at him, wide blue-gray eyes a little dazed.
      He covered her mouth again before she could speak—either to consent or decline—and drew her slowly backward, step by step, toward the bed, until he hit it with the backs of his legs. He broke the kiss, looking down at her, her wet ruby lips parted, her cheeks flushed pink.
      She looked edible.
      “Raphael,” she whispered, his name on her lips like a plea, and something within him broke.
      This wasn’t what he wanted. This wasn’t right. But it was the only thing possible and it would have to suffice because it was all he could do.
      And trying to resist was killing him.
      He traced a hand up her arm, over her shoulder, to her neck, and from there touched her bound golden hair. “Will you take down your hair for me?”
      She gasped—a small, quick inhalation—and nodded.
      He watched as she raised her arms, her stormy eyes locked on his, and withdrew the pins from her hair one by one until the heavy mass fell like a curtain around her shoulders. He bent then and gathered the locks in his hands, burying his face in her neck, inhaling her.
      His woman.
      He felt her tremble against him and then her fingers speared through his hair. “Raphael.”
      He lifted his head.
      Her hands fell away and she began undressing, her head bent down as she unhooked her bodice. He saw that her fingers fumbled and he knew that a better man would turn aside. Would give her privacy to collect herself and disrobe with modesty.
      But he wasn’t such a man. He wanted all of her—her mistakes and her private moments, her shame and her worries—everything she held back from the rest of the world. As he wanted this. This moment of fumbling.
      This moment of intimacy.
      She pulled the bodice from her arms. Untied her skirts and let them pool around her feet before kicking them aside. Glanced up at him and then worked at the laces to her stays.
      Her unbound hair fell over her shoulders, nearly to her waist, thick and swaying gently as she moved.
      She was beautiful.
      She pulled her loosened stays off over her head and stood in chemise, stockings, and shoes. The tips of her breasts peeked out from beneath the thin cloth.
      She began to bend for her shoes, but he stopped her. “No. Let me.”
      He grasped her by the waist and lifted her to the bed.
      Carefully he drew off her slippers, letting them drop to the hardwood floor before running his hand up her left calf. The room was so quiet he could hear each breath she drew. She watched him as he reached under her chemise, into that warm spot behind her knee, tugging at the ribbon of her garter.
      Her breath hitched.
      He glanced up at her as he found bare skin. Hot, so hot under her skirt. He could almost imagine he smelled her, standing between her bent legs. He pulled the first stocking off and moved to her other foot, smoothing his thumb over her arch, over that high instep, that sweet, delicate ankle. The curve of her calf—one of the loveliest curves in nature—elegant and perfect. Someday he’d like to draw her nude.
      The faint, almost inaudible whisper as he pulled the ribbon off raised the hairs on the back of his neck. His nostrils flared and he couldn’t wait any longer. He lifted her bodily, moving her farther up on the bed, placing her head and shoulders against the pillows, and then pushed up her chemise, crawling between her spread thighs and settling to enjoy what he’d found.

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About the Author

Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times bestselling author of over seventeen lush historical romances including the Maiden Lane series. Publishers Weekly has called her writing "mesmerizing." She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with three untrained dogs, a garden in constant need of weeding, and the long-suffering Mr. Hoyt.

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