Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Jack of Hearts by Sandra Owens - Release Tour Excerpt


Jack of Hearts
by Sandra Owens
Series: Aces & Eights, #1
Genre: Contemporary Romantic Suspense
Publisher:  Montlake Romance
Release Date: February 14, 2017



Alex Gentry doesn’t scare easily. Working as an undercover FBI agent in the biker bar he and his brothers co-own, he hangs with deadly criminals in order to gather information. Danger is just part of the family business. But one thing has him terrified: his attraction to Madison Parker.

Madison is the cousin of Ramon Alonzo, son and second in command to a notorious drug lord Alex is trying to bust. Alex has befriended Ramon as part of his cover, and Madison has unknowingly become his informant. Falling for her could risk this case—and both their lives.

All Madison wants is to get her new bookstore business off the ground, and for her creepy cousin Ramon—to whom she’s unfortunately indebted—to leave her alone. If she could only stop fantasizing about his mysterious new friend, Alex…

As the Alonzo cartel investigation heats up, so does their relationship. But will the secrets they’re keeping tear them apart—or get them both killed?



Alex tapped a prearranged code on the glass, and the window immediately slid up. After stepping inside, he closed the window, locking it. It was undeniably odd to be sneaking into a woman’s room for reasons other than joining her in her bed.

They’d tried to think of a neutral place to meet, but Ramon had spies all over South Miami. Madison Parker, cousin to Ramon Alonzo, was running scared, and ever since stepping between her and Ramon when the jackass had tried to kiss her, Alex had accidentally fallen into the role of champion. Since that worked to his advantage, he’d encouraged her to contact him if Ramon ever messed with her again.

Why he was keeping her a secret from his brothers was a question he refused to examine too closely. She was a prime source for information on the Alonzo family. There was no one in the world he trusted more than Nate and Court, but he was feeling weirdly possessive where Madison was concerned. A damn red flag there. He didn’t do possessive.

The reason he’d lied to his brothers sat crossed-legged on the end of her bed, leaving the only chair in the room for him. The bedside lamp was dimmed, and in the low artificial light her fiery red hair reminded him of the flames of a campfire, changing colors whenever she moved. Her eyes almost appeared black, but in the daylight they were a captivating green. Cat eyes, he’d thought the first time they met.

He’d first laid eyes on Madison Parker three weeks ago at Ramon’s house while playing a game of pool with the man, doing his best to lose a hundred bucks. Not an easy thing when his opponent kept missing the pocket. Alex had already learned that Ramon didn’t like losing, no matter what the game was.

He quietly sighed when Ramon missed again. Alex bent over the table and lined up his cue. He was going to have to put this one in the pocket, or it would become obvious he was missing on purpose. If Alex could manage to lose to Ramon, the man would be happy and might even brag a little about his drug business.

Just as Alex pulled his arm back to take the shot, a woman walked into the room, and he hit the ball so hard that it flew over the rim of the table and hit the wall. Jesus, she was gorgeous. Red hair curling halfway down her back, green eyes, and a splash of freckles across her nose, she took his breath away. A first for him.

He liked women, maybe a little too much if you listened to his brothers, but never had he wanted to lay claim to one at first sight—until now. Who was she? She glanced from him to the dent in the wall then back at him, and full lips that wore nothing more than clear gloss lifted in a grin.

“Nice shot, Ace.”

He straightened, dropped the cue stick, and walked around the table, holding out his hand. “Hi, I’m Alex, and you are?” She put her hand in his, and he had the unsettling thought that he was never going to let it go.

Her gaze fell to their joined hands. “I’m—”

“My cousin,” Ramon said, stepping next to her and putting his arm possessively around her shoulders.

“You don’t look anything alike.” It was a stupid thing to say, but he had the urge to call Ramon a liar. If she was a member of the Alonzo family, she was off-limits, and that was a heartbreaker.

She tugged on her hand, and he reluctantly let go, then she slipped out from under Ramon’s arm. “I’m Madison Parker, and you’re very observant, Alex.”

There was mischief in those cat eyes, but it faded when Ramon wrapped his fingers around her hair and pulled her roughly back to him. She didn’t seem to like her cousin, if they were in fact cousins. Alex wasn’t sure he believed it, but he also hoped she wasn’t Ramon’s girlfriend.

“Ramon’s father and my mom are twins.”

So it was true; they were cousins. He wondered where the red hair and green eyes came from, but he reminded himself that as a family member of the man he was investigating, she was untouchable, no ifs, ands, or buts. Where that gorgeous hair and those beautiful green eyes came from was not his concern.

When she tried to pull her hair out of Ramon’s fist, Ramon’s eyes flashed with annoyance. Alex gritted his teeth and forced himself not to give Ramon a bloody nose.

She slapped at her cousin’s arm. “Ouch. That hurts, Ramon.”

As fast as a striking snake, Ramon backed her up to the wall, pressed his body against hers, and crashed his mouth down on hers. She whimpered as she tried to push him away.

Alex saw red, dark blood red. He grabbed the man’s earlobe and twisted it hard until Ramon let go of her.

“What the hell’s wrong with you?” Ramon said, rubbing his ear after Alex let go.

“She’s your damn cousin, man. The better question is, what’s wrong with you?”

Ramon looked at her and sneered. “Does she look like my cousin? I think my aunt brought the wrong baby home from the hospital.”

“I’m proud to say I got my looks from my dad,” Madison said to Alex. She swiped the back of her hand across her mouth. “The next time you touch me like that, cousin, you’re gonna want to guard your balls, because those are what my knee will aim for.” She walked out of the room with her head held high.

“Damn, she’s hot,” Ramon said, his gaze on her ass as she left.

Alex visualized how Ramon would look without teeth.




A best selling, award-winning author, Sandra Owens lives in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Her family and friends often question her sanity, but have ceased being surprised by what she might get up to next. She’s jumped out of a plane, flown in an aerobatic plane while the pilot performed thrilling stunts, has flown Air Combat (two fighter planes dogfighting, pretending to shoot at each other with laser guns), and rode a Harley motorcycle for years. She regrets nothing.

Sandra is a member of Romance Writers of America’s Honor Roll and a 2013 Golden Heart® Finalist for her contemporary romance, CRAZY FOR HER. In addition to her contemporary romantic suspense novels, she writes Regency stories.





Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Between the Devil and the Duke by Kelly Bowen - Release Day Blitz and Review


Title: Between the Devil and the Duke
Author: Kelly Bowen
On Sale: January 31, 2017
Series: A Season for Scandal, #3
Publisher: Forever
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Price: $5.99 USD


Their love was always in the cards.

He should have thrown her out. But when club owner Alexander Lavoie catches a mysterious blonde counting cards at his vingt-et-un table, he's more intrigued than angry. He has to see more of this beauty-in his club, in his office, in his bed. But first he'll have to devise a proposition she can't turn down.



Gossip said he was an assassin. Common sense told her to stay away. But Angelique Archer was desperate, and Lavoie's club offered a surefire way to make quick money-until she got caught. Instead of throwing her out though, the devil offers her a deal: come work for him. Refusing him means facing starvation, but with a man so sinfully handsome and fiercely protective, keeping things professional might prove impossible . . .




Excerpt:
“I don’t suppose you’d be interested in a job?”
“A job?” Angelique was aware she was repeating him like a half-wit, but she couldn’t seem to wrap her head around the last minute of conversation.
 “Yes.” Lavoie leaned forward slightly.
“Ladies don’t have jobs.” Angelique tried to put some conviction into that statement, knowing it was what she was supposed to say. Such knowledge had been drilled into her since she was old enough to walk. Ladies grew up and married well and became wives who lived out their lives in genteel comfort. They did not partake in industry. Or gambling.
At least they didn’t until they did not marry at all, much less well, and their parents died, their family fortune went missing, and their newly titled brother couldn’t stay sober long enough to look for it. Then ladies did what they had to do to hold their families together.
She glanced up at him, but her sharp reply, like everything else, had only seemed to amuse him.
“A strange thing to say for a lady who already treats my vingt-et-un table as her personal place of business.” Lavoie’s lip had curled, his scar making it look more like a smirk than a smile.
She looked away, despising the truth in his assessment. “I do no such thing. Ladies don’t have jobs,” she repeated, though it was a pitiable attempt at her defense.
“Ladies don’t have jobs that people know about,” he countered.
“What? What does that mean?” Angelique’s eyes snapped back to his.
Lavoie moved out from behind his desk and leaned back against the front of it. He crossed his booted feet casually, never taking his eyes off her. “It means, my lady, that once you stop pretending to be aghast, and you understand that I offer the potential to earn more money in a single night than you will earn in three at the card tables, you might wish to reconsider. I wish you to deal a high-stakes vingt-et-un table that can accommodate at least six players who will be playing against the house and not each other. Who will be playing against you.”
Angelique was at a loss for words.
“I don’t need to have your answer now,” he said, tipping his head. “You know where to find me. I will pay you for your time, of course, and you will also receive a percentage of whatever you—my club—wins. I promise that your identity will remain concealed. And unlike the men you have had to endure thus far at the tables, I promise that I won’t touch your breasts. And anyone else in my club who might attempt to do so in the future will answer to me.”
She felt her face heat all over again, even as another hail of unwanted thrills crackled through her like a summer storm.
“Tell me you’ll think about it,” Lavoie prompted.
“Very well.” The shock was wearing off, and Angelique was trying her best to collect her scattered thoughts. She’d be an idiot to deny him outright. She didn’t trust him entirely, but her current situation didn’t leave her many choices. And she couldn’t deny that his offer, like the man himself, was more than a little…intriguing. Exciting. Fascinating.
Lavoie pushed himself off the desk, coming to stand directly in front of her. His eyes skimmed over her hair, her mask, her gown, as if he was evaluating—admiring—what he saw. “With a mind such as yours, I think you would be brilliant,” he murmured. “I think that you and I would make splendid partners.”




My Thoughts:

I absolutely loved this! Angelique is in Alex’s club counting cards because she is in desperate need of money. Instead of being upset, he is intrigued and offers her a job. He ends up helping her out with more than that. I just loved them together. It was one of those stories I just didn't want to end because they were so darned adorable I just wanted to read about them forever. This was my first book by Kelly Bowen but now I need to go and find more.


My Rating: *****
Steam Factor: !!!!
*Notes:
Some mild language.

My Source: Publisher


Where to get it:

Amazon | B&N | iBooks | Google Play | Kobo


About the author:

Kelly Bowen grew up in Manitoba, Canada. She attended the University of Manitoba and earned a Master of Science degree in veterinary physiology and endocrinology. But it was Kelly's infatuation with history and a weakness for a good love story that led her down the path of historical romance.  When she is not writing, she seizes every opportunity to explore ruins and battlefields.

Currently, Kelly lives in Winnipeg with her husband and two boys, all of whom are wonderfully patient with the writing process.  Except, that is, when they need a goalie for street hockey.


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Giveaway:

We’re giving away 10 copies of BETWEEN THE DEVIL AND THE DUKE!
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Thursday, January 19, 2017

Giving It All by Christi Barth - Release Tour Review, Giveaway, and Excerpt


Giving It All
by Christi Barth
Series: Naked Men, #3
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: January 17, 2017



Logan Marsh never stays in one place for long. Through his family’s foundation, Logan spends his days traveling to the world’s most dangerous places to deliver disaster relief, which really puts a damper on his sex life—until he reconnects with his high-school crush. Stranded together in the Caribbean, they enjoy a steamy fling that awakens feelings Logan has ignored for too long. But family drama calls him away from her sweet embrace . . . or so he thinks.

Brooke Gallagher loved being a home economics teacher and cheerleading coach. Then an unexpected tragedy forced her to take some time off. Now she’s back in D.C. and despite the intensity of her tropical encounter with Logan, she’s shocked to bump into him again. Logan’s dealing with his own issues (including a newly discovered half-sister) and he’s itching to get back on the road. More than anything, Brooke wants to be there for him. But first, he has to decide if love is enough to keep him in one place.






I've been reading these from the beginning and while they probably stand alone okay, the characters are so interconnected that I recommend starting from book one. I think this one is my favorite so far. We finally get to meet Logan! He is pretty fantastic. He's rushing home to meet the sister he didn't know about when he runs into Brooke, his old high school crush. Things get steamy and then he's off. But they bump into each other again and again and it is super sweet. He's always off to different parts of the world saving people so he doesn't think he can be in a relationship when he'll just have to leave again. Brooke understands. But they have a hard time keeping things light. I just really enjoyed this one. 




Christi Barth earned a Masters degree in vocal performance and embarked upon a career on the stage.

A love of romance then drew her to wedding planning.  Ultimately she succumbed to her lifelong love of books and now writes award-winning contemporary romance, including the Naked Men and Aisle Bound series. Christi can always be found whipping up gourmet meals (for fun, honest!) or with her nose in a book. She lives in Maryland with the best husband in the world.







Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Shacking Up by Helena Hunting - Cover Reveal

Ruby Scott is months behind on rent and can’t seem to land a steady job. She has one chance to turn things around with a big audition. But instead of getting her big break, she gets sick as a dog and completely bombs it in the most humiliating fashion. All thanks to a mysterious, gorgeous guy who kissed—and then coughed on—her at a party the night before.

Luckily, her best friend might have found the perfect opportunity; a job staying at the lavish penthouse apartment of hotel magnate Bancroft Mills while he’s out of town, taking care of his exotic pets. But when the newly-evicted Ruby arrives to meet her new employer, it turns out Bane is the same guy who got her sick.


Seeing his role in Ruby’s dilemma, Bane offers her a permanent job as his live-in pet sitter until she can get back on her feet. Filled with hilariously awkward encounters and enough sexual tension to heat a New York City block, Shacking Up, from NYT and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting, is sure to keep you laughing and swooning all night long.


Author Bio

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She's writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy.

Available 5/30
Preorder Links
Amazon
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iBooks
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Monday, January 16, 2017

Falling for the Player by Jessica Lee - Release Tour Excerpt and Giveaway


Falling For the Player
by Jessica Lee
Genre: New Adult - M/M Romance
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
Release Date: January 16, 2017



Bad boy and former NFL running back Patrick Guinness is tired of meaningless sex. Ever since his scorching hot one-night stand three years ago, no one has interested him. So when Max Segreti wanders into his mechanic shop—and his life again—Patrick can't stop thinking about the totally-out-of-his-league law student and the possibility of getting him out of his system once and for all…

Max Segreti has spent his entire life doing what his father wants. But when he runs into the hotter-than-hell player he’s never been able to forget, he’s not thinking about studying for the bar. A distraction is the last thing he needs, but after an encounter leaves him wanting more, Max embraces the chaos that Patrick brings…even as he knows it can’t last. They're too different to ever have a future together.




     Jumping up, Patrick yanked his soaked shirt over his head.
     Damn, that shit is hot!
     “Oh, fuck!” Max grabbed the wet shirt and tried to soak up the remaining coffee dripping off Patrick’s skin. “God, this is my fault. I should have been more careful.” Then Max jerked his own T-shirt off and blotted Patrick’s chest with it, his expression twisted with concern. “Are you okay?”
     He was fine. Not that Max would stand still and listen long enough to find out. Fuck, the guy was too adorable. Patrick was lucky the coffee had been Max’s heavily creamed version and so not hot enough to do any damage.
     Patrick braced his hands on the other guy’s shoulders, trying to hold him in place, but it wasn’t working. “Max,” he called out to him.
     “Do we need to get you to the ER?”
     “I’m fine.”
     “Shit, Patrick, I—”
     Seizing one of Max’s wrists, Patrick hauled him against his chest, bringing a halt to whatever else he’d been about to say. Max looked up, his eyes wide, stunned.
     “I’m okay,” Patrick whispered. He couldn’t stop drinking in the other man’s features. Strands of Max’s dark hair had fallen forward onto his forehead. The guy had the most expressive dark blue eyes, with small flecks of amber around the pupil he hadn’t noticed until now. Patrick followed the bridge of the man’s perfectly straight nose lower to where it ended above the carved V of his mouth. Outside of his looks, Max was everything Patrick never went for, smart and obviously rich, judging by the expensive car and his big-ass condo. Back home, the only way he and Max’s type would have mixed would have been when he worked on their cars. Funny how his popularity as a football star placed him, for once, on the other side of the tracks. Someone who would soon be rolling in the big bucks. The pink tip of Max’s tongue appeared, momentarily short-circuiting Patrick’s train of thought as Max licked his full lower lip.
     Fuck.
     Patrick wasn’t sure who moved first, but the next thing he knew, he had his fist clenched in Max’s short, thick hair and his lips sealed against Max’s. A hard shudder of pleasure raced over him, and Patrick’s cock bucked against the confines of his zipper. Max groaned, his mouth roaming every inch of Patrick’s mouth, as if he couldn’t get enough. But Patrick matched his every move, unsure who needed the contact, the pleasure, more.


Visit Entangled Publishing for links to all available retailers


Jessica Lee is an EPIC eBook Award winner and international bestselling author of paranormal romance. She lives in the southeastern United States with her husband and son. In her former life, Jessica was a science geek and spent over twenty-five years as a nurse. But after the birth of her son, she left her medical career behind. During that transition, she discovered her passion for writing romance and has never looked back. Jessica Lee is currently published with Entangled Publishing and Resplendence Publishing. Plus she has several self published titles available.



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