Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Book Review: Temporary by Sarina Bowen and Sarah Mayberry

Temporary 
by Sarina Bowen and Sarah Mayberry
Release Date: September 12, 2017
Source: Authors
The most beautiful man I've ever seen is the one who can ruin everything...

The first time I lay eyes on Callan Walker, I know he’ll be trouble. With his smug grin, hot Aussie accent and thousand dollar shoes, he’s just the kind of rich guy who always gets what he wants.

And he wants two things: a night of sin, and my cooperation as he outmaneuvers his powerful mother to take control of his uncle’s estate.

I can’t afford either one. I’m the only thing standing between my little sister and the foster care system. He may have money and charm on his side, but I have something even more powerful -- pure desperation. This temp job at his mother’s company can become a full time job for me. It has to.

But when Callan’s eyes rake over my body, sometimes I forget my obligations. His piercing gaze finds the fun, optimistic girl I used to be and not the tired person I’ve become.

And it works--if only for a moment. Our night together was a mistake. I can't afford to get sucked into his high-powered family’s treachery. But the closer I get to Callan, the more layers I find beneath those expensive clothes. Though I can’t forget this is temporary. He’s temporary. I have too much to lose.

Too bad my foolish heart didn’t get the memo
 



Over the last year, I have fallen in love with Sarina Bowen's contemporary romances. I have never read anything by Sarah Mayberry before, but I was excited to see what these two authors could come up with together!

Grace has tried her best to provide for her teenage little sister ever since they finally decided to leave their mom. So when a temp job opens up working for a great company, Grace can't help but hope it will turn into a permanent position. Grace is put in charge of a huge project clearing out the home of the company's owner's deceased brother and she knows this is her time to prove her worth. But the moment Callan Walker walks through the door, Grace knows he's trouble. The Australian playboy was devastated to learn of his Uncle's death, the only member of his family who showed him real love, and he'll do anything save his legacy. But the more time Callan spends with Grace, the more he realizes he can't ruin her life while trying to save his Uncle's life work. Grace knows her job's important, but can she resist Callan before the job is over? 

When I started this one, I really appreciated Grace's character and how she was a twenty-something who had to raise her teenage sister. Grace sacrificed so much for her sister and she really was desperate to keep her job. The moment Callan walked into her life, though, Grace was tested again and again in order to keep her job. While I did like their chemistry, I felt like once they got together, that's really all we got from them and I wasn't as connected with them both individually as I wanted to be. I don't know what it was, but nothing about this book made me dying to keep on reading. I just felt "meh" about the whole story. 

While I liked Callan's character, I thought his family situation was a bit cliched and like something I had read about before. His mom's character was so over the top and I felt like I've read about the icy, back-stabbing mother who doesn't care about her playboy son. And the reason Callan couldn't find the thing he had been looking for for so long wasn't that exciting or realistic to me. I don't know, I just felt underwhelmed after reading this one. 

Temporary was a nice, sweet read that was enjoyable enough to read. While it wasn't amazing, it was still a cute romance between two very different people.



Monday, September 25, 2017

Cover Reveal: Bountiful by Sarina Bowen



No last names. No life stories. Those were the rules.

Once upon a time a cocky, copper-haired tourist sauntered into Zara’s bar. And even though she knew better, Zara indulged in a cure for the small-town blues. It was supposed to be an uncomplicated fling—a few sizzling weeks before he went back to his life, and she moved on.

Until an accidental pregnancy changed her life.

Two years later, she’s made peace with the notion that Dave No-Last-Name will never be found. Until one summer day when he walks into her coffee shop, leveling her with the same hot smile that always renders her defenseless.

Dave Beringer has never forgotten the intense month he spent with prickly Zara. Their nights together were the first true intimacy he’d ever experienced. But the discovery of his child is the shock of a lifetime, and his ugly past puts relationships and family out of reach.

Or does it? Vermont’s countryside has a way of nurturing even tortured souls. The fields and the orchards—and hard won love—are Bountiful.

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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

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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

Synopsis

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.

Sawyer
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!

TMFrazier

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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!



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