Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Cover Reveal: His Risk to Take by Tessa Bailey + Giveaway

Lately wherever I looked everyone seemed to rave and praise Tessa Bailey's Entangled debut novel Protecting What's His, the first in her Line of Duty steamy and exciting new series, so no wonder it shot straight to the top of my TBR pile. And now it's time for Entangled Publishing and Tessa to reveal the cover of her next Line of Duty novel: 

His Risk to Take by Tessa Bailey

Book #2 in the Line of Duty series

The greater the risk, the hotter the reward?

Homicide cop Troy Bennett had a reputation on the Chicago PD for being fearless and in control?until the night his daredevil partner is killed during a raid. From that moment on, he swears he?ll never again be responsible for the loss of a loved one. To escape his demons, Troy transfers to the NYPD, bringing him up close and personal with Ruby Elliott, a beautiful, street-savvy pool hustler.

Reckless and stubbornly independent, Ruby embodies everything Troy?s avoiding, but when she walks into O?Hanlon?s Pub and blows his carefully laid plans to hell, Troy knows he has to have her?risks be damned. But there?s a connection between Ruby?s shadowed past and a case Troy?s working involving a notorious Brooklyn felon, throwing her safety into jeopardy. Confronted with his biggest fear, will Troy push Ruby away to keep her safe or fight to keep her in his arms where she belongs?

Buy at Amazon - B&N

GIVEAWAY RULES:

To be entered to win a $50 USD Amazon gift card just fill out the Rafflecopter form below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway is open worldwide!

Good Luck!

Guest post by Rachel Kall + Giveaway

Today's guest Rachel Kall, author of the newly released Legally Undercover is here to tell you her thoughts about the well known "write what you know" advice/truth. And if you leave a comment you could even win yourself a copy of Legally Undercover

Write what you know?
by Rachel Kall

Write what you know. That’s advice often given to aspiring authors, and it makes sense in a lot of ways. Especially while you’re learning the craft (which is a difficult task). Why write something that you have no personal knowledge or experience in?

I think writing what you know is good advice. But even good advice should not be viewed too stringently. I definitely started out writing what I know. Not only the setting and topics of the books, but the characters. This provided me with an opportunity to enrich the story with experience and insight. While at the same time realizing that fiction is still that—fiction. If we write too true to life, no one would want to read it. What’s the fun in that?

Now I want to write more about things I don’t know, but would love to learn. One of the most exciting parts about being an author in my opinion is learning new things. Researching is a key part to writing a believable book. Research also drives imagination. Once you have a base level of knowledge about a topic, then it’s time think outside the box and get creative.

In my debut romantic suspense, Legally Undercover, I wrote what I know. The law firm setting was something I’m very familiar with. But once you get some of the elements in place, that’s when imagination takes over. No one wants to really read about someone working in a law firm day in and day out. Believe me--no one has ever approached me about taking top secret assignments. But that’s exactly what happens to Alex Popov in Legally Undercover. One day she’s trying to focus on her goal of making partner and the next her world is changed by events out of her control. She has to make difficult choices and some of them may even end up being life and death decisions.

So writing what I knew was only the first step. I had to make that into fiction—something interesting and entertaining. I say above all things write what you love and enjoy. Because if you love it, chances are others will too.

What do you think? Is writing what you know good advice?

Rachel Kall writes romantic suspense. She enjoys writing spicy and suspenseful stories to keep readers guessing. She’s a lawyer by day and passionate about writing. Her favorite genres are romantic suspense and contemporary romance, but she’s always open to an amazing story in any genre. Rachel is a member of Romance Writers of America, KOD, and Georgia Romance Writers. She loves animals and is active in animal rescue. She enjoys adding loveable pets to her stories. She lives in Georgia with her husband and five furkids—two dogs and three cats.

Where you can find Rachel:


Legally Undercover by Rachel Kall

Attorney Alex Popov’s dream of partnership is put to the test when she’s pulled into a top-secret investigation involving arms dealers and one of her clients, Rodrigues Capital. The only good part about her association with the secretive organization is her client contact, Pedro Martín. She’s drawn to him, but he’s hiding something.

When Jacob shows up as a new attorney at Alex’s firm, it’s clear Pedro isn’t the only one with secrets. As Alex tries to determine Jacob’s true identity, she’s drawn closer to Pedro and deeper into the mystery of Rodrigues Capital and its shadowy networks.

Everyone has an agenda. In a world of lies, where no one is what they seem, Alex puts everything — even her dreams of partnership — on the line for love.

Watch the book trailer

Buy at: Amazon | B&NKobo

Get the prequel Pure Deception for free at Smashwords

GIVEAWAY RULES: 

To win one of the 4 ebook copies of Legally Undercover fill out the Rafflecopter form below:


a Rafflecopter giveaway
Giveaway is open worldwide and ends on 3 May 2013!

Good luck!

Monday, 29 April 2013

Guest post by Hayson Manning + Giveaway

Please give a warm welcome to Hayson Manning, who is here to talk a bit about her debut novel Wife in Name Only, a contemporary romance set on the beautiful tropical island of Tonga. So take a cocktail and join us where the warm breeze coming from the turquoise waves will ruffle your hair and if you tell us about your own dream destination you could even win a copy of Wife in Name Only

Dream Places to Live
by Hayson Manning

First up, a very big heartfelt thank you to Stella for having me on her fab-o site today. I am chuffed to be here.

Wife in Name Only is set on a tropical island in the Kingdom of Tonga. I have been fortunate enough to visit the island and it’s heaven. For Zoe, the island was more than a destination—it was the way of life that she craved. The connections with people, taking the time to find herself, so to speak. Of living, laughing, knowing your neighbors. Loving life instead of speeding through to the finish line. She’d once shared such a connection with Rory before both of them let what they’d once held so precious, die. When Rory first arrived on the island, the slow place nearly killed him. He was itching to get back to Los Angeles and the cutthroat business empire he’d built. But slowly the island grew on him, and he too found connections to a life and the woman he loved heart and soul.

Palm trees on Fiji
That little island on Tonga would be my dream place to live and it got me thinking about dream destinations I could live. I have to say that I love the sun. The closer I can get to the equator, the happier I am. Hubs, the shoe dropping addict, would rather don a snowsuit and trek around Antarctica, which makes for lively discussions at Chez Manning on the topic of holidays. The kids don’t care as long as there’s food and I’m not cooking it.

First destination of choice would be an island in the South Pacific. I’ll take Tonga, Fiji, Vanuatu, Western Samoa, Tahiti, New Caledonia or The Cook Islands. I’m sure there are tons of other little islands there that need researching and I’m up for that.

Italian bread and wine
Italy would come next. Wine, pasta, Italian men and stunning woman I could research for my next book. Oh, did I say wine?

Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia. It’s just jaw-droppingly pretty. Crystal water, stunning beaches, a truly remarkable part of the world where I could while away the years.

Where I am in Southern California is pretty awesome. The beach is close; okay, so the water is freezing—not that I’d ever go in anyway unless it was midnight and there wasn’t another person in a five mile radius. The weather here is awesome. I’m sitting outside in April and the sun is warm on my skin.

What about you? Do you have a dream destination where you’d love to live?

Wife in Name Only by Hayson Manning

Trapped in a loveless marriage, Zoe Hughes escaped to make a new life for herself on the tiny island of Tonga. Now she runs a successful boutique honeymoon resort. Selling true love is easy. No one needs to know she’s married in name only. At least until America’s premier honeymoon magazine wants to publish a feature on her perfect marriage. Now she must convince her estranged husband to rip himself away from plotting corporate takeovers in LA to save her island paradise.

Rory agrees to come for forty-eight hours, but only because he needs the positive PR. To his surprise, the wife he finds in Tonga isn’t the same woman he married. Now she’s so much more…

When a storm strands Rory in Tonga, will he win back his wife or leave paradise empty-handed?


Hayson Manning’s debut release, Wife in Name Only with Entangled Publishing, is available now. She lives in Southern California with her lovely sloth children, infuriating but much loved shoe-dropping husband, a tubby opinionated cat (as if a cat doesn’t ever have an opinion). There will often be a foster dog parked on the couch waiting for their forever home. She loves to read, cries while watching Antiques Roadshow and is cannot speak she’s sobbing so much by the end of Undercover Boss. She is also an expert at finding new and inventive ways to avoid exercise.

Where you can find Hayson:



GIVEAWAY RULES: 

Hayson has generously offered an ebook copy of Wife in Name Only to a lucky commenter!


To enter just leave a comment and answer's Hayson's question: Do you have a dream destination where you’d love to live?

Giveaway is open worldwide and ends on 10 May 2013!

Good luck!

Bout of Books Read-a-Thon 7.0 Starts Soon! Join the fun and giveaways!


In 2 weeks the 7th Bout of Books Read-a-Thon will start so if you haven't tried it yet read on and join the fun or if you are a seasoned BoB veteran mark your calendar and don't forget the big day!

You were going to read that week anyway, right? Read with us.

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 13th and runs through Sunday, May 19th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog.

- From the Bout of Books 7.0 team

So ready steady, go!

Or at least soon, until the event starts think through what books you'd like to tackle from your TBR pile and what will be your Read-a-Thon goals (doesn't need to be anything daunting can be a simple: "Have fun and read at least 20 pages per day!").

I know I'll be at the starting line, will you? Hope to see you there!

Sunday, 28 April 2013

It's Monday, What Are you Reading? (#113)


It's Monday, What are you reading? is a weekly event hosted by Sheila at One Person's Journey Through a World of Books to list the books completed last week, the books currently being read and the books to be finished this week.

Hey Everyone,

I know, it has been weeks or even months since I last had the time for a Monday post, so of course I won't be able to tell you about all the books I've read since (but if you follow me on Goodreads, Twitter or Facebook you might have seen them mentioned). This post is just about the books I've read in the past week or so:

Books I completed


A lovely second instalment in Christi Barth's Aisle Bound wedding romance series. It was just as romantic as Planning for Love with an extra dose of angst and heartache. I really liked Mira and Sam, they were a great couple.



With another beautifully written and engaging story Alyssa Everett proves that she absolutely deserves to be on my must-read-author list. I couldn't put down Lord of Secrets and can't wait for her next novel! My review will be posted soon, until then you can check what I thought of Ruined by Rumor.



Lately you might have seen this new wedding romance series mentioned on the blog: this was Book #3 in the Promise Harbor Wedding series, and if you want a light and heart-warming contemporary romance series you should pick this one up! To get a first taste you can read my reviews of Jilted, Bolted and Busted.



This was a very steamy sci-fi/paranormal erotica, a quick read I enjoyed but since it was book #3 in the series and I haven't read the previous ones I was a bit lost when it came to the big picture/mystery/plotline. You can read my review here.


Books I'm currently reading
Can you believe that this is my very first FemDom or Domme erotica? It is interesting to see how a string alpha male can want to play the role of a submissive to a feminine woman who has a certain vulnerability to her. Enjoying it so far!



The premise of Femme Fatale features one of my favourite tropes: the inexperienced heroine wanting to explore her sexuality and have a passionate and sexy man show her the ropes, so I was very much looking forward to reading it. I'm at around 20% and so far I'm not blown over :-/


Books I can't wait to start 


So far I've only seen raving reviews and glowing praise about this book so I'm curious to read it.



I recently read Samanthe Beck's debut novel Private Practice, which I LOVED (once again it featured the sexy bad boy introducing the inexperienced heroine to a world of pleasure and awakening her to her own sexuality), so I'm extra excited to read this second novel of hers!

And what are you reading this week?

Guest post by Ros Baxter + Giveaway

Please give a warm welcome to Ros Baxter, author of Fish Out of Water, an unique mermaid urban fantasy story as she tells you about how she copes with books, which don't end the way she would have liked. Share your story and you could win a copy of Fish Out of Water!

My characters or yours?
by Ros Baxter

When I was a kid, I read a lot. A lot. And you know what I hated more than anything? When the book didn’t end like I thought it should. I used to wail and rail and gnash my teeth, and generally throw myself around. How could they have done that to my precious hero/heroine? The one in whom I’d invested so many pages and hours.

One day, my mother saw me getting all hot under the collar. I don’t remember the book, but I do remember the moment, and the problem.

“They cut his arm off!”

(Honestly. They did. On the last page, they cut my handsome, sword-fighting hero’s arm off.)

Mum looked at me carefully, those grey eyes measuring my pain. She shrugged. “So grow it back,” she said.

“Huh?” My mind was spinning. What was she suggesting? Surely you couldn’t just...? “Are you serious? I can’t do that.”

“Why not? Are they real people?”

“No.”

“Where do they exist then?”

“In the book.”

“Where else?”

My brain struggled to catch up, as it so often did with her. “Erh, in my...”

She nodded encouragingly.

“...imagination?”

She clicked her fingers. “Exactly. So grow it back. Make like it never happened. Change the ending.”

Change the ending. At first it seemed like sacrilege. Then it was incredibly liberating. Those three words, and a whole universe of artistic licence. Of course, she also said “Even better, write your own book” (which, of course, I began to do, with a vengeance).

But I’ve thought about that moment with my mother a lot these last few days, as this battle over Charlaine and her Sookie ending has raged. Quite apart from my sympathy for this wonderful, rich, funny writer, I’ve kept thinking of all those readers, so indignant. I’ve kept thinking: just change the ending.

She gave you hers. Make your own.

What do you think? Is it sacrilege? Did you ever change the ending? I’ve got a free copy of my sexy mermaid mystery, Fish Out of Water, for the best change-the-ending story from a reader. You can read a little about the book below.


“It’s Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum meets Splash in a sexy, smart-talking debut about a mermaid in a desert, a city under water, and the secret that no-one is supposed to uncover.”

Dirtwater's straight-talking Deputy Sheriff has a lot on her plate: a nicotine addiction that's a serious liability for a mermaid, a solider-of-fortune ex who's hooked on her Mom's brownies, a gorgeous, naked stranger in her shower, and a mysterious dead blonde with a fish tattoo on Main Street.

Oh, and one other thing.

She's scheduled to die on her thirtieth birthday - in three weeks - unless she can 'change the course of destiny and save the world entire'. Throw in a Mom who's the local Mayor and a Dad who's been locked in the county jail for twelve years, and that's all the trouble she needs without her mermaid roots coming back to haunt her.

Rania's heading home to Aegira for a family wedding but she's starting to have a sinking feeling that's got nothing to do with hydroporting seven miles under the sea and everything to do with some weird connections that seem to be emerging between her, the dead blonde, her Mom's shady past and a ten thousand year old prophesy. Now if she can just steal a corpse, get a crazy Aegirian priest off her case, work out who the hell's trying to kill her and stop sleeping with the fishes, she might be able to unravel the prophesy, the mystery of the missing choirgirls and the secrets hidden in her Mom's past. And maybe even save her own ass while she's at it.

Buy it at Amazon - iTunes

Ros Baxter has been writing since she was eight and penned a whimsical series of short stories about a race of tiny people who lived on a rainbow. While they were a hit in the playground, a few things intervened – including a career in social policy and four noisy children.

Ros started writing again in earnest three years ago. In that time, Ros has secured a two-book deal with Harper Collins Australia, published Sister Pact (a romantic comedy co-written with her sister Ali) and Fish Out of Water (Escape Publishing on 1 April), been a contributing author to the e-anthology URL Love, and finaled in the STALI competition.

Ros writes fresh, funny, genre-busting fiction. She digs feisty heroines, good friends, quirky families, heroes to make you sigh and tingle, and a dash of fantasy from time to time.

Ros also runs a successful business consulting to government and the private sector. She teaches professional writing skills and has authored a writing guide, Clarity.

Ros lives in Brisbane, Australia, with her husband Blair, four small but very opinionated children, a neurotic dog and nine billion germs.

Find Ros at her website - BlogFacebook - Twitter.


GIVEAWAY RULES:

Ros has generously offered a copy of Fish Out of Water to a lucky commenter!


All you need to do is just leave a comment, answer Ros' question and share with us one of the endings of a story/book you have changed and how.

Giveaway is open worldwide and ends on 10 May 2013!

Good luck!

Book Review: Busted by Sydney Somers

Title: Busted
Author: Sydney Somers
Series: Book #3 in the Promise Harbor Wedding series
Release Date: 16 April 2013
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Source: ebook copy provided by the author for review
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Author's WebsiteAmazon, Samhain, Read an excerpt

Grade: 5 stars

Novellus Perfectus!
Goodreads appetizer: His game... her rules.

The Promise Harbor Wedding, Book 3

Hockey star Jackson Knight has a hundred reasons not to return to Promise Harbor, but none of them are good enough to get him out of attending his best friend’s wedding. Even with a career-ending knee injury, every puck-bunny in town will be gunning for him.

Worse, getting a pair of cuffs slapped on him at the bachelor party could ruin any chance of getting back in the game, even as a coach. Unless he can convince the arresting officer to smooth things over—by going to the wedding as his date.

Hayley Stone figures posing as Jackson’s girlfriend is the least she can do to salvage his reputation. Plus, having a man with a toe-curling smile on her arm will keep her ex off her back.

What starts as a simple plan to deflect small-town pot-shots unexpectedly becomes a sizzling night that hits Jackson like a full-body-check to the heart. Now he’s determined to prove that she’s the best of reason of all to come home—for good.

Warning: Contains a fiery powerplay both on and off the ice, skin-tingling forced intimacy, interfering grandparents, bear costume hijinks, a haunted house and the kind of game-changing chemistry worth fighting for.

My Thoughts: If you follow the blog you might remember that I love wedding romances and have been reviewing the Promise Harbor Wedding series (you can already read my reviews of Jilted by Kelly Jamieson and Bolted by Meg Benjamin, and I'll review Hitched by Erin Nicholas next week).

Busted is the third book in the series and so far it was my absolute favourite! You want to know why? Well who could resist a sexy hockey player who lays on the charm heavily, a sassy cop heroine, and chemistry so explosive you'll constantly get those shivers of delight *mmm*? Well most certainly not me, and I bet you won't either.

Jackson Knight, hockey celebrity and Promise Harbor's Golden Boy, is back in town as best man for Josh's wedding. But although the wedding doesn't happen he just can't seem to leave. Mostly because of a sassy blonde feisty woman who isn't impressed by his fame and glory and crosses swords (or rather handcuffs) often with him. Jackson was a hero the reader fell in love with in no time: it wasn't his good looks (though they didn't hurt ;-)) but his charming, witty personality and his warm heart.

Hayley was a breath of fresh air heroine: despite being a cop she wasn't a hardened too tough person, she retained her femininity and a certain vulnerability that didn't clash at all with how well she performed her job. Her sass and smart mouth, and the way she stood up to Jackson made me laugh out loud several times:

“I’m listening,” she prompted, not all that happy about it. If he didn’t enjoy pushing her buttons so much, he’d kiss her again.

“You need help. I need something to keep my hands busy.”

“As much as I appreciate how eager you are to volunteer your bra removal services, I’m not interested.”

“I’m talking about the renovations on your gramps’s house.”

“Oh.” She didn’t glance away despite the flicker of pink on her cheeks.
She stood next to him in jeans and a T-shirt that read, Feel safe at night. Sleep with a cop. It had taken him a couple minutes to stop laughing long enough to tell her he loved it.
Same with me, I almost choked on the bus when I read it! :-D

“There were never any girls in here with me. Not in any locker room.” He’d always been careful to keep hockey separate from his love life. And now he couldn’t imagine ever separating Hayley from that part of himself. What would it have been like to come home from a game to her? Would she have helped to ice his bruises and kissed them all better? Probably after she told him to nail the other guy’s ass to the boards next time.

As you can get a glimpse from the quote below the chemistry between Jackson and Hayley was phenomenal:
People moved around them in search of a table, but he didn’t take his eyes off her, giving him plenty of time to slip an arm around her back when she pressed up against him. She lifted a hand to his face, her palm sliding along his jaw as she rose up to kiss him. Soft and sweet, her mouth opened over his, coaxing him to return the kiss. She didn’t have to try very hard. The taste of her awakened a fierce craving for more. More of her hair tickling his skin, more of her fingers curling around his nape and digging in, more of her breath catching between each pass of his mouth across hers.

And what made their story even more outstanding was that Sydney Somers made it so much more than physical attraction: there was friendship, understanding, support and love all rolled into the mix besides the lust part and that's what made Busted such a fantastic and truly memorable love story.

Verdict: I loved Busted. It was flirty, funny, sexy and witty and full of heart-warming scenes. I really couldn't think of a better way to spend a Sunday afternoon than reading this lovely small town romance. Busted was an instant hit and Sydney Somers just became a must read author for me. I urge you to pick up this series and to discover Sydney Somers in case you aren't a fan of hers already. ;-)

With such glowing praise how could I give Busted anything else than 5 stars? So Busted gets the 5 shining smexy stars it deserves!

Review originally posted at Book Lovers Inc.

Plot: 9/10
Characters: 10/10
Writing: 10/10
Ending: 9/10
Cover: 9/10 - almost perfect but I would imagine a hockey player to have wider shoulders and more muscle than the cover model.

Order of the series:

Book #1 - Jilted by Kelly Jamieson
Book #2 - Bolted by Meg Benjamin
Book #3 - Busted by Syndey Somers
Book #4 - Hitched by Erin Nicholas


Buy it:


Saturday, 27 April 2013

And this week's winners are...


Hey Everyone!

The weekend is finally here and that means it's time to announce this week's winners! Congratulations to

the lucky winner of an ebook copy of Chasing Mrs. Right by Katee Robert is

Katha


the lucky winner of a paperback copy of the Clean by Alex Hughes is

Robin the Book Nerd


the lucky winner of an ebook copy of Ask Me to Stay by Elise K. Ackers is

Christine LaCombe


Congratulations winners! You have all be notified of your win in e-mail, please get back to me within 48 hours or I will have to draw a new winner. Thank you.

There are still a lot of giveaways going on, you can enter them by clicking on their individual links at the top of the blog. 

Enjoy your Sunday everyone! :-)

Book Review: Bolted by Meg Benjamin

Title: Bolted
Author: Meg Benjamin
Series: Book #2 in the Promise Harbor Wedding series
Release Date: 2 April 2013
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Number of pages: 272 pages
Source: ebook copy provided by the author for review
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Author's WebsiteAmazon, Samhain, Read an excerpt

Grade: 4 stars

Novellus superbus!
Goodreads appetizer: Sometimes you have to get lost before you can find yourself.

The Promise Harbor Wedding, Book 2

Greta Brewster McBain in a bind. Two, if she’s really counting. First there’s the can-barely-breathe, bridesmaid’s dress from hell. Second, the stranger who just carried her “perfect” brother’s fiancée out the church door has made it impossible to tell her own mother about her own divorce.

Rather than confirm her reputation as the family screw-up, Greta takes a drive to clear her head.

Trapped in a hole and unable to reach his cell phone, Hank Mitchell is resigned to becoming a permanent part of his own archeological dig when help arrives—in the form of a woman who looks like a Gone With The Wind refugee. Behind the ruffles and lace, though, is something he appreciates: a woman who isn’t afraid of a little dirt.

Their instant connection draws Greta into the eccentric world of the Hotel Grand, where she impulsively trades her hoopskirts for an apron. Soon things are getting hot, not only in the hotel kitchen, but in Hank’s arms...

Warning: Contains hot moonlit sex, a melancholy turtle, two wisecracking seniors, and the world’s ugliest bridesmaid dress.

My Thoughts: I love wedding romances and have enjoyed Jilted by Kelly Jamieson, the introductory story to the Promise Harbor Wedding series, so of course I was very much looking forward to reading the next books. Bolted, which is the second novel in the series and features the maid of honour who vanishes after The Wedding That Wasn't, was a wonderful and unexpected surprise.

Greta, the heroine and focal character of Bolted was also introduced in Jilted: she is the groom's sister and the chief maid of honour, who disappears after the wedding disaster to hide away from her family so as she doesn't have to share that she got divorced and has failed in her marriage as in most of the things in her life. I will honestly admit that I didn't care much for Greta in Jilted, so it came as a surprise how much I enjoyed reading her story and getting to know her better. And the reason for that was Meg Benjamin's witty and entertaining writing style.

Despite my feelings being rather lukewarm toward Greta in Jilted, I came to like her quite quickly in Bolted. I especially loved her snarky and sarcastic inner voice.

“You called Gavin the night before our wedding and told him you’d always love him?” Josh was staring at her as if he’d never seen her before. Allie licked her lips.

“Not exactly,” she said. “I didn’t tell him to come or anything. I didn’t say that I loved him.”

“Allie. We’re getting married,” Josh said flatly. “You don’t just change your mind at the last second about something like this.”

“I’m sorry,” she whispered.

Right. Greta wasn’t a lawyer, but she had a feeling that defense wasn’t going to fly.

Despite being the black sheep of the family and having lived a somewhat irresponsible life or rather a life full of failures as Greta feels, it was surprising to see that there was much more to Greta than met the eye: she had doubts and fears and an inner vulnerability that made her a character the reader could understand, sympathize with and grow to care for.

She was a fascinating combination, Greta Brewster. Practical and fantastic. Sneakers and Gone With the Wind dresses. He wasn’t sure he’d ever run into anyone quite like her before.
Hank rolled to his side, taking her with him, one hand tangled in her hair. “You can cook. You can rock a hoopskirt. And you’re sexy as hell. Maybe you should tell me about your flaws now before I decide you’re the ideal woman.”

And besides Greta being a nuanced and well fleshed out character another detail that made me bond with her was her love and talent for cooking and baking. ;-) The scenes where she created the meals for the family were wonderfully written and besides making my mouth water made me picture her creations with ease.

“This is one of the most fantastic cakes I’ve ever tasted. You’re an artist, babe. The Chagall of cake pans.”

Bolted  was full of a cast of secondary characters that not only made the reader chuckle out loud but grow very fond of them. It wasn't only Greta who made new friends but I also felt like part of the small makeshift Dubrovnik family, and the events (=the simple meals) felt like scenes from a Tennenbaum movie ;-)

Hank was an endearing hero, he was kind and nice, the kind of man whose embrace gives you comfort and makes you smile. He was a hunk but completely unaware of his own handsomeness and his absent-minded professor thing just made you love him more. Although he was great, I felt that the story was mainly about Greta and her path to rediscovering and redefining herself and Hank was merely a standby alongside the other secondary characters like the Dubrovniks.

My personal "complaint" was that I would have preferred if the whole story was told through Greta's POV and not switching between hers and her mother's, but I understanding that this way we could see how Greta is perceived by her family and friends.

Verdict: Bolted was an unexpected and delightful surprise, I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would at the end of Jilted, and it is all thanks to Meg Benjamin's funny and witty writing that I grew to like Greta so quickly. She was a great heroine, her dry sarcastic narrative won me over in no time and with a set of wonderfully quirky secondary characters Bolted will sure remain a memorable story. I am grateful for having discovered a great new author and will definitely check out more of Meg Benjamin's books, and until then I can't wait to read the next Promise Harbor Wedding books!

Review originally posted at Book Lovers Inc.

Order of the series:

Book #1 - Jilted by Kelly Jamieson
Book #2 - Bolted by Meg Benjamin
Book #3 - Busted by Syndey Somers
Book #4 - Hitched by Erin Nicholas

Buy it:

Cover Reveal: Adorned by Geaorgeann Swiger

Adorned by Georgeann Swiger

Book #1 in The Trinity of Souls series

When seventeen-year-old Anya finds out she’s actually an angel being trained to protect humanity, she discovers that becoming an angel has nothing to do with wings and haloes. For Anya, becoming an angel has to do with death—her death.

Micah, the angelic soldier ordered to protect her until she transitions from human to angel, promises her death will be a glorious experience as long as she follows his rules. But getting Anya through this life and to the next isn’t as simple as Micah expects. His job becomes even more difficult after he unwittingly performs a miracle that exposes Anya’s hidden angelic light.

With her secret out, Hell’s legions begin targeting her. Unfortunately, Hell’s minions are the least of Micah’s worries. He’s more concerned about the forbidden human emotions he’s developed toward Anya. Even more troubling, is she seems to love him too. And giving in to those feelings, could mean dire consequences for them both.

Release Date: 4 November 2013

About the Author

Georgeann Swiger earned her degree in journalism from West Virginia University, and then spent five years as an anchor/reporter at WBOY-TV in Clarksburg, WV. After having children, she left television news to be a stay at home mom. During that time, she discovered creative writing was more fun than writing about real life tragedy. Imagining interesting characters and having them come to life on the page is now her passion. When she’s not writing, she works as a substitute teacher. She lives in Reedsville, West Virginia with her husband, two kids, a beagle dog and a temperamental cat who tries to rule the house.

Connect with her at her website - Facebook - Twitter - Pinterest

Friday, 26 April 2013

Guest post by Sydney Somers + Giveaway

April is almost over, and the wedding season has officially begun. So to get in the mood of sunny summer romances, there is nothing better than reading some wedding romances and I especially would like to recommend to you the Promise Harbor Wedding Series penned by Kelly Jamieson, Meg Benjamin, Sydney Somers and Erin Nicholas. To learn more about the series and the individual stories check out first  the introduction to the series by Kelly Jamieson, then get to know the bride through a Bride's Wedding Day Checklist by Erin Nicholas, and learn some wedding etiquette by Meg Benjamin. And today I would like to introduce you to Sydney Somers who is here to tell you about Busted, the third book in the series (and my personal favourite so far! - come on it has a sexy hockey player who lays on the charm heavily, a sassy cop heroine and some explosive sparks between them, a must read in my opinion!). So read on to get to know Jackson and Hayley and I dare you not to pick up a copy after getting a first taste of their story ;-)

Ingredients to a Love Story
by Sydney Somers

First off, thanks so much for having me, Stella!

With Busted (the third book in the Promise Harbor Wedding Series) now available, I’ve been taking part in different blog tours and chatting about the books to anyone I can tie down long enough to listen to me. :-) I recently answered an interview question about what ingredients make a great love story, and it really got me thinking about Busted in particular and what makes it such a fun romance. Not that I’m bias or anything :-)

So I thought I’d break down my recipe for a great love story step by step with examples from Busted.

1. Take one sinfully hot hero:

From the altar’s steps, Jackson continued to stare at her. One corner of his full mouth tipped up, making him look far more innocent than they both knew he was.

As if reading her thoughts, he winked.

2. Add one quick-witted heroine:

Jackson reached the door first, but didn’t push the glass open. “You never said when I could make things up to you.”

“Are we still talking about the truck thing? That’s not necessary. Just water under the bridge, right?” She inclined her head toward his arm. “Are you actually going to open the door or are you waiting for a ref to blow a whistle first?”

3. Mix well and watch the sparks fly:

Oh sh*t. She wasn’t the one he’d taken to Sunset Bluff at all.

“Hayley,” he managed, the croaked name rising to the tip of his tongue out of nowhere.

She nodded and lowered her voice. “Though I usually go by Detective Stone these days.” Without a word she waved at the two tables across the room and headed for the door.

4. Introduce some conflict:

“You arrested the Jackson Knight?”

Hayley rolled her eyes at the exaggerated disbelief in her partner’s voice, not bothering to ask him to lower his voice. By now most of Promise Harbor had heard about last night, and all the Knight fans she worked with at the station had already given her hell.

5. Make things interesting:

“Getting back to the wedding,” Jackson said, “we both have people we want to avoid later today. Going together just makes sense. We can bail each other out of any uncomfortable situations.”

“We could do that without being each other’s date.” The word nearly caught in her throat.

He shook his head. “Makes it more authentic if we go together, and it will keep the wolves at bay.”

“Wolves? Is that what you’re calling the puck bunnies who want you to autograph their breasts?”

6. Build the attraction:

Jackson returned her grin, and the slow curve of his lips was far more potent when unleashed in person. Ignoring the warming sensation in her stomach that made her think long and hard about taking a step closer to him, she rounded her truck to the driver’s side. Jackson followed.

7. Stir in some trouble:

“How good are you at climbing trees?”

Jackson cringed. “Horrible. Broke my arm after I fell out of one when I was twelve.”

“Never mind. I think…I’ve almost got it…” Another frustrated curse was followed by, “Either embrace your inner twelve-year-old or you’ll have to head to the wedding without me.”

Damn, she was serious.

Jackson looked up and down the street, searching for another option—any other option—and not finding anything.

Okay then.

8. Really stir in some trouble:

“What the hell was your friend thinking?”

“I have no idea,” she answered honestly, but clearly Gavin hadn’t been able to sit back and let Allie marry someone else after all.

“Did you know he was going to do this? Aren’t you his best friend?”

“He apparently forgot to text me that he planned to storm the church.”

“You could try not sounding half-impressed by that.”

9. Throw in a twist:

Something tugged at his memory, something to do with the stupid braces...

Maybe it was just nerves left over from the failed cigarette attempt that made Hayley almost squirm in place when he looked her way. Or maybe it was something else…something…

No way.

“It was you.”

“Me?” Her neutral expression didn’t slip even a little.

“Yes, you. You in the bear suit that night.”

10. Heat things up:

Her voice lowered, like she might not be getting enough air with him pressing up against her. “What about the handcuffs?”

“I’m not ready to rule them out entirely.”

She planted her hands on his chest but didn’t push him away. “I’m going to get you wet.”

“Christ, I hope so.”

Hayley sucked in a breath, the catch in her voice dragging his attention right to her mouth.

Tracing her bottom lip with his thumb, he gave himself a second to absorb the charged current drawing them closer, his mouth a whisper from sweeping across hers. And then he kissed her, slowly.

11. Raise the stakes:

On her way out, Gramps stopped her. “Are you in love with him?”

“Jackson?” she asked, realizing a second too late who he meant.

He arched a bushy brow. “Are you dating any other hockey players I don’t know about?”

Laughing, she shook her head. “No to both questions. We haven’t been…together long enough,” she settled on, ignoring the guilt greasing her stomach.

“Are you sure? Could have sworn you were in love with him years ago with the way you were hanging around the rink all the time.”

12. Don’t forget the HEA:

You guys didn’t think I was gonna give that away, did ya? ;-)

Busted by Sydney Somers

Book #3 in the Promise Harbor Wedding series

His game... her rules.

Hockey star Jackson Knight has a hundred reasons not to return to Promise Harbor, but none of them are good enough to get him out of attending his best friend’s wedding. Even with a career-ending knee injury, every puck-bunny in town will be gunning for him.

Worse, getting a pair of cuffs slapped on him at the bachelor party could ruin any chance of getting back in the game, even as a coach. Unless he can convince the arresting officer to smooth things over—by going to the wedding as his date.

Hayley Stone figures posing as Jackson’s girlfriend is the least she can do to salvage his reputation. Plus, having a man with a toe-curling smile on her arm will keep her ex off her back.

What starts as a simple plan to deflect small-town pot-shots unexpectedly becomes a sizzling night that hits Jackson like a full-body-check to the heart. Now he’s determined to prove that she’s the best of reason of all to come home—for good.

Warning: Contains a fiery powerplay both on and off the ice, skin-tingling forced intimacy, interfering grandparents, bear costume hijinks, a haunted house and the kind of game-changing chemistry worth fighting for.


Buy at Amazon - Samhain

A born and raised Maritimer, Sydney Somers fell in love with writing when she finished her first story, Jenny and the Glowing Green Mittens. After attempting her first book in high school, she set writing aside to focus on school. While getting her degrees in psychology and education, Sydney tried her hand at journalism between part time jobs before finally returning to her love of writing.

Twenty-five novels and novellas later, Sydney is thrilled to spend her days slaying demons, running with shape-shifter packs and making the people in her head fall wildly in love. When she’s not writing or curled up with a good book, Sydney can be found chasing after her herd of kids, talking her way into a gourmet meal, exterminating rogue dust bunnies or joking about the pending zombie apocalypse. She loves hearing from readers and invites them to contact her anytime at:



GIVEAWAY RULES:

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Giveaway is open worldwide and ends on 6 May 2013!

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