Saturday, 30 November 2013

Let It Snow Books 2013 is here! - Giveaway Galore!



Hey Everyone!

We had so much fun last year we decided to have an encore and celebrate the holidays with all of you and our favourite authors once again, so with Anna we bring you the

Let It Snow Books 2013 Event!!!

Once again prepare yourselves for month long celebrations throughout December, there will be daily author guests with holiday-ish posts, festive interviews and lots of talk about books and of course tons of giveaways! ;-)

So mark your calendars, visit Ex Libris daily to enter all the wonderful giveaways and get in the holiday spirit! :-D

This post is the mastersheet of the event, you'll always find the direct link to the day's special post below.

There will be daily giveaways (with Rafflecopter that you can enter on the daily posts) and almost every giveaway is open worldwide, woohoo! (Once again thanks so much to all the generous authors who have donated to the event!)

To help us get the word out about the event (and get some extra entries) please display our badge wherever you can:

Let it Snow Books 2012


Thank you and let's the fun begin! :-)

Event Schedule: links will go live the day they are scheduled for!

December 1 - Kimberly Kincaid
December 2 - Ros Baxter
December 3 - Jennifer Shirk
December 4 - Jeanette Grey
December 5 - Diana Quincy
December 6 - Kathryn Barrett
December 7 - Katie McGarry
December 8 - Sarah Castille
December 9 - Alison Packard
December 10 - Christine S. Feldman
December 11 - Brighton Walsh
December 12 - Stacy Gail
December 13 - Robin Bielman
December 14 - Gina L. Maxwell
December 15 - Amy Andrews
December 16 - Jax Garren
December 17 - Jessica Scott
December 18 - Christi Barth
December 19 - Tamara Morgan
December 20 - Karen Erickson
December 21 - Robbie Terman
December 22 - Victoria James
December 23 - Jennifer St. George
December 24 - Jennifer Estep
December 25 - Julie James
December 26 - Nadia Lee
December 27 - Katie Porter
December 28 - Amanda Usen
December 29 - Sydney Somers
December 30 - Jillian Stone
December 31 - Lila DiPasqua

So join the fun with us and Happy Holidays! :-)

Book review: Darker Days by Jus Accardo

Title: Darker Days
Author:Jus Accardo
Series: Book #1 in The Darker Agency series
Release Date:August 19th 2013
Publisher:Entangled Publishing
Number of pages:332 pages
Source: Copy purchased by reviewer

Grade: 2 stars

Novellus malus!
Goodreads appetizer: Jessie Darker goes to high school during the day, but at night she helps with the family investigation business. Cheating husbands and stolen inheritances? They’re your girls—but their specialty is a bit darker. Zombie in your garage? Pesky Poltergeist living in your pool? They’ll have the problem solved in a magical minute. For a nominal fee, of course...



When gorgeous new client, Lukas Scott, saunters into the office requesting their help to find a stolen box, it sounds like a simple case—until the truth comes out. The box is full of Sin.



Seven deadly ones, in fact.

They’ve got five days to recapture the Sins before they're recalled by the box, taking seven hijacked human bodies with them. Easy peasy—except for one thing...

There’s a spell that will allow the Sins to remain free, causing chaos forever. When the key ingredient threatens the life of someone she knows, Jessie must make the ultimate choice between love and family—or lose everything.

My Thoughts:It had been quite some time since I read a good YA book and Darker Days seemed exactly the book to end that long period for me. Jus Accardo is known for her witty and humorous writing style and the premise of Darker Days is more than interesting. And while in some departments this story delivered, in some others it failed miserably to do so. But let's take things from the beginning.

As soon as I started reading this book I was sure I had a winner in my hands. I was beyond intrigued with the story and Accardo's humorous dialogues and descriptions. But my enthusiasm lasted less than a few chapters into the story I'm afraid. As soon as I reached the middle, any novelty of the plot had wore off and the humorous writing style was just trying to keep the reader's interest in a story that just couldn't deliver in any other department.

First of all, let me say that Darker Days is the embodiment of every imaginable YA cliche out there and that was the first failure for me. Do you want insta-love? Check. Hot bad boy? Check. Bad boy but in essence naive and pure hearted? Check. Annoying heroine who thinks she knows everything? Check. Heroine who saves the world without even understanding how? Check. Heroine who thinks is normal but she's far from it? Check. And the list goes on I'm afraid.

The second failure was the plot. Huge gaps there and that spin in the end instead of surprising the reader just didn't really make much sense.

In Darker Days there is a huge variety of supernatural creatures, zombies, demons, half demons, witches, necromancers, lamiai but all of them felt disconnected to the main plot and unreal. Like they were thrown in the story for the sole purpose of variety. Not to mention that more times than once, I felt that the whole story was unrealistic.Because even though such a variety of supernatural creatures exists, population, in its majority, doesn't have the slightest idea about it. Even though they walk in broad daylight. And when a normal person is encountered with the possibility of the supernatural being very real, they just take it for what it is without breaking a sweat. I mean you are possesed by a Deadly Sin, you have no idea of the supernatural world being actually real and when the Sin leaves your body all you do is thank the one who freed you and not even freak out or ask what the hell is going on? I mean come on!!! In what world that happens?

Anyway, that is just one example of how unrealistic the plot was but believe me there are more. So many actually that I kept rolling my eyes again and again while reading Darker Days.

The next failure were the characters. All of them. They again felt unreal and without consistency. The author is trying really hard to make us believe that Lucas is a bad boy but news here, wearing leather and pulling of the bad boy image doesn't make you one. In fact I haven't encountered such a naive character in way too long... Lucas is Wrath for a reason, although throughout the book, I couldn't believe for a second that he could ever be Wrath. Thus, when he was fighting to remain calm it was almost comical... And Jessie! Well, she was the only female character you could like because all the other female characters were awful. And that speaks volumes of her character. Not that she was that dislikable but she wasn't a memorable character either.

But the most problematic character of all was Vida aka Lust. I never thought that Lust equals slut but apparently that's the way things work in this universe. Plus, the reason Lust chose Vida's body to invade was a story better not be featured in a YA book. Just saying....

Verdict: Darker Days failed to impress me I'm afraid. Even though it is a fun written book and I appreciated the humor of it, at least at first, poor characters and a very loose plot made me lose my interest in the whole story pretty soon.

Plot: 5/10
Characters: 3/10
Writing: 6/10
Ending: 3/10
Cover: 6/10

Buy it:



Friday, 29 November 2013

Guest Post by Juli D. Revezzo + Giveaway

Today we are very excited to welcome author Juli D. Revezzo here at Ex Libris in celebration of her newest release with Wild Rose Press, Passion's Sacred Dance, the first novel in a brand new paranormal romance series that is bound to catch our interest! Juli stops by today with a very interesting post about heroes and how to build them and to share an excerpt of her book. So, please welcome Juli and don't forget to check at the end of the post for the giveaway :)

How to build a hero
by Juli D. Revezzo

There’s one thing I’ve learned writing romance these days, its readers are all about the hero. You know the one, the guy that steps in and takes all the responsibility off the girl, usually while she’s bickering with him?

Sometimes, he tends to dictate everything in their relationship, in and out of the bedroom.

Really? I don’t know about you, but… when I was growing up I read a lot of classic literature and in particular the Arthurian legends. So doing, it instilled in me a love of a different kind of hero. The one who will fight for his fair lady and by acts of bravery and chivalry, win her hand.

So when it came time to write my current paranormal romance, Passion’s Sacred Dance, I struggled with the current mold of stereotypical alpha male. How in Heaven’s name could I write such a strong woman as my heroine, Stacy Macken and fit in the stereotypical romance hero?

I went back to the original romances, those written in the long ago forgotten days of chivalry. Out popped my hero Aaron Fielding, wielding a strange, magical sword to keep this modern day, business-owning Damsel (in distress but holding her own quite well, thank you!) safe.

Throw in some wild supernatural creatures Stacy had heretofore had no experience with, and while she deferred to his expertise momentarily, Aaron was chivalric enough to allow Stacy her own side of the balance. And yet, Aaron is the perfect hero. He’s polite, he’ll open the door for her, and sweep her off her feet over a puddle of noxious bad guy entrails… (and in other non-contaminated rooms too! ;)) but working together, rather than fighting against each other seems to work quite well for Stacy and Aaron. Isn’t that what love’s all about?

Would you like a little taste? Okay:
Aaron planted his stance against the ground like the roots of a great oak tree, and pulled out his harshad. He flipped the handle over in his hand and two flail-like ends emerged. The ends cut through the glass wall, and snaked around the lawyer’s throat like metal ropes, before tightening.

The lawyer’s face began to turn red. Rendered immobile, he stumbled easily as Aaron gave the handle a hard tug. Stacy screeched as she tripped along with him. Aaron stepped through the wall, pried Bradley’s fingers from Stacy’s flesh, and shoved her protectively behind his back.

“Do me a favor,” he ground out between clenched teeth. “Call the number I gave you yesterday. They’ll do us more good than 9-1-1.”

Stacy turned and ran for the hall as the lawyer hissed out, “You should learn not to get involved, unsavory one.” Aaron swallowed his relief when he heard Stacy slam the door against the wall. He turned his attention back to the cackling lawyer.

“I would give you the same warning, human.” Aaron studied the man in earnest, his voice calm.

“You have no idea what you’re involved in.”

“I should say the same to you.”

“Oh, I know the depths of their malevolence.” He tugged Bradley’s shirt collar down to reveal the glowing green eye tattooed on his chest. The lawyer’s breathing became more shallow, and sweat trickled from his temple.

“Do you know what you’re dealing with? Think long and hard about which side of the debtors’ line you’ll be on when the battle comes.” He slung the lawyer around, towards the back door. “Tell your masters this ground will carry my brand when all is said and done, or I shall gladly hound them to the ends of their unnatural lives!”

He growled his disgust and willing the harshad to release, he shoved Bradley into the courtyard outside.

“Go back to your barrow and tell your masters I won’t let this place, or this woman, go so easily. Now, go! Before I decide to send you back to them in pieces!”

(FYI, the harshad is a special sword-like weapon made for Aaron’s army by the gods).

Juli D. Revezzo has long been in love with writing, a love built by devouring everything from the Arthurian legends, to the works of Michael Moorcock, and the classics and has a soft spot for classic the “Goths” of the 19th century. Her short fiction has been published in Dark Things II: Cat Crimes, The Scribing Ibis, Eternal Haunted Summer, Twisted Dreams Magazine and Luna Station Quarterly. She also has an article and book review or two out there. But her heart lies in the storytelling. She is a member of Independent Authors Network and Magic Appreciation Tour. Passion’s Sacred Dance is her first romance novel.



Battling mounting debt, Stacy Macken is determined not to lose her historic art gallery. When Aaron Fielding appears and offers to help, she fights to keep the attraction sizzling between them from clouding her judgment. He may be her savior in disguise--but can she trust him?

Aaron intrigues her with tales of the Tuatha dé Danann, god-like warriors who protect humanity from the monsters seeking their destruction. If Aaron can prove what he claims, she would give up anything to help--even the gallery he claims is sacred ground. But with her property set to stage the next epic battle, she needs answers. An old family diary will confirm the ancient legend is true, if only they can find it in time.

If the battle is lost, the enemy will take control of Earth for the next five hundred years. Stacy and Aaron's budding love might only complicate things.

Buy it at Amazon - Kobo - iTunes - Publisher - Goodreads
GIVEAWAY RULES:

Juli is generously offering one Passion's Sacred Dance bookmark to two lucky commenters!


To be entered in the giveaway just leave a comment telling us if you prefer to be a balance between the main couple of a story or your hero to be as alpha as it gets.

Giveaway is open worldwide and ends on 13 December 2013!

Good Luck!

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Book review: Rules of Entanglement by Gina L. Maxwell

Title: Rules of Entanglement
Author:Gina L. Maxwell
Series: Book #2 in the Fighting for Love series
Release Date:March 31st 2013
Publisher:Entangled Publishing: Brazen
Number of pages:247 pages
Source: ebook copy provided by publisher for review
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Author's WebsiteAmazon, Kindle, B&N, Book Depository US, Book Depository UK, Read an excerpt

Grade: 5 stars

Novellus Perfectus!

Goodreads appetizer: Seven days. And seven rules to break...


District Attorney Vanessa McGregor firmly believes that structure and order are the stuff that dreams are made of. Happiness can be planned - and it starts with seven rules she's laid out for her future. But as she's organizing her best friend's wedding in Hawaii, all of Vanessa's best-laid plans are about to meet their match in a wickedly hot MMA fighter...

Jackson "Jax" Maris is focused on surfing, training and fighting. That is, until he opens up his big mouth, and finds himself having to pretend he's engaged to his little sister's best friend, Vanessa. When they're force to share a romantic bungalow, however, their little charade suddenly takes a turn for the seriously sexy. And while Jax is definitely not part of Vanessa's long-term plan, he has seven days - and seven naughty nights - to turn her seven-rule plan upside down.

My Thoughts:One can't even imagine how much I enjoyed reading Rules of Entanglement! It was just the perfect story to suit my mood and to make me dream of sunny places and sexy guys! Oh, you just have to read Rules of Entanglement, preferably while you are lounging under the sun, hearing the waves crashing on shore. Well, you can read it wherever you want, because one thing is for sure, this story is a must read!

Rules of Entanglement is the much anticipated sequel to the Fighting for Love series, a story that since I read Seducing Cinderella I couldn't wait to get my hands on. And now that I finally read it, let me tell you that I wasn't disappointed in the least with Gina L. Maxwell's newest story! On the contrary! While I did enjoy the first book in this series, Seducing Cinderella, I remember I had a few problems with a couple of things. Not any major problems but enough to make me rate that story with 4 stars. Rules of Entanglement though, is a solid 5 star review for me! I didn't care if this is a romance that follows the same pattern as many other stories out there. The plot is rather typical. But who cares when it's so much fun to read something that even if you know where it leads it still makes it impossible for you to put the book down?

I won't say anything about the plot. The summary is sufficient to know what you are going to read and like I said this is just a romantic story more or less similar to others out there, meaning that it follows many of the genre's cliches. What I will say though is that Gina L. Maxwell must have had a really great time while writing this story and that much is evident throughout the whole book. From the first until the last page Rules of Entanglement is a fun, cute and sexy as hell story that you can't possibly put down. Add to that the gorgeous Hawaiian setting which the author described in an amazing way, the constant bickering between Jackson and Vanessa and you can easily understand why I had such a great time while reading this book and why it made me dream of sun and beaches!

Both Jackson and Vanessa are well developed and solid characters, their chemistry is sizzling hot and the sex scenes.... well, they were on fire! The sexiness department didn't really come as a surprise I must say. If you have read the first book in the series, then you know how good is Maxwell in that department. What came as a surprise is that even though I found quite unnecessary the lie Jackson said at the beginning of the story, I managed to move past it and even understand his reasoning. Well, partially. For many chapters into the story I just wished that he would be done with his lie and reveal the truth but after a point I just didn't care. And by the end, all I wanted was for those two to get their HEA :)And what an ending that was! I just loved it, just loved the way that the book ended pretty much the same way it started but also in a completely different way.

The writing style is easy flowing and enjoyable and like I said before the reader gets the vibe that the author had a really great time while telling this story which in my opinion always results in a book that the reader can't help but enjoy in return.

Verdict: Rules of Entanglement is one of the stories I really loved so far this year and believe me my choices lately in books are a bit bad... Gina L. Maxwell delivered a sexy and highly enjoyable story all fans of the romantic genre shouldn't miss the opportunity reading! A must read!

Plot: 9/10
Characters: 10/10
Writing: 10/10
Ending: 10/10
Cover: 9/10

Buy it:

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery



Order of the series:
Book #1 - Seducing Cinderella
Book #2 - Rules of Entanglement

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Book review: Midnight Lies by Ella Grace

Title: Midnight Lies
Author: Ella Grace
Series: Book #2 in the Wildefire series
Release Date:September 24th 2013
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Number of pages:368 pages
Source: ebook copy provided through NetGalley for review

Grade: 3 stars

Novellus bonus!

Goodreads appetizer: The Wilde sisters of Midnight return in this thrilling novel of romantic suspense, perfect for fans of Maya Banks, Allison Brennan, and Lori Foster.



IT’S ALWAYS HOTTER AT MIDNIGHT.



The winds of fate have blown cruelly on a family that once had it all: money, power, prestige. The lives of three beautiful daughters were forever changed when, on a sultry night in Midnight, Alabama, a murder-suicide shattered the Wilde family. The girls grew up to live separate lives but now have returned home, each to face a danger no one can see coming.

Former homecoming queen Samantha surprised everyone by going into law enforcement, but beneath her tough façade lies a wary heart. The tragedy that struck her family is an ever-present reminder that nothing is ever as it seems. When the man she loves, Quinn Braddock, a doctor and Iraq war veteran, is accused of murder, Samantha assumes the worst. Brokenhearted, her confidence shattered, she returns to Midnight. Though exonerated, Quinn still feels the sting of Samantha’s doubt, but he can’t forget his feelings for her and follows her. Soon after his arrival, a shocking murder terrifies the town, and once again, Quinn is under suspicion. This time, Samantha will not turn her back on the man she loves—even if it means walking into a killer’s trap.

My Thoughts: After how much I enjoyed reading the first book in the Wildefire series, you can easily understand why I was so excited when I started reading Midnight Lies. And for about the first half of the book I was pretty certain that Midnight Lies would be just as good as Midnight Secrets was, if not better. But that feeling unfortunately didn't last...

But let's take things from the start. My favorite part of the book was by far the pretty big introduction. Like in the first book of the series, Ella Grace takes the long route and describes in detail all the events that lead the couple in their present situation rather than start immediately and just inform us of her heroes' past. And while usually I'm not fond of big introductions, in this case I loved it! I thought that even if so many details were not necessary for the reader to understand the characters it still was a great way to get to know them before the actual story began. Plus, I always love a good mystery and Ella Grace knows exactly how to mix the right dose of mystery and suspense with a hot romance.

But, as soon as the intro finished, I noticed that I was becoming less and less excited with the whole story I'm afraid. I can't pinpoint exactly what it was that made me lose my interest. Maybe the fact that I had guessed the murderer's identity way too early in the story played a role. Or maybe because of how Quinn was portrayed as the sole responsible for his break-up with Sam. Don't get me wrong, he did treat her horribly but Sam played a role in their fall-out too. And the fact that only Sam understood that while all the others just assumed he was an asshat irked me a bit. They were both at fault (maybe one more than the other, but still both of them) and they needed to forgive each other.

And here probably lies my next problem with this book. And that is the characters. Sadly, even with the very detailed background I just couldn't connect to either of the main characters in Midnight Lies. Quinn was full of contradictions. He's supposed to be a control freak and never showing his emotions but at the same time he immediately caves to his ex's demands or rushes of to Midnight to beg for Sam's forgiveness as soon as he learns that she was the one who helped drop the charges against him. He's proud but still buys a house (of all things to do to get your loved one to forgive you!) in Midnight even when Sam turns him down.
And Quinn's character isn't the only one full of contradictions. Sam is as well. While she's portrayed as a smart and pretty perceptive person she acts nothing like it. What she does is doubt herself every other step of the way and never trusting her instincts.

Other than that the plot is another thing I wasn't all that excited about. While the writing style is very good and full of details and vivid images, the whole mystery subplot was done in a haste. After how great the whole story was set up at the beginning, the ending was anticlimactic to say the least. Both the murderer and his motive were pretty obvious really soon in the story.
So, you can easily understand why Midnight Lies couldn't really catch my interest. Neither the mystery part nor the chemistry between the main couple could get my attention I'm afraid.

Verdict: Midnight Lies was something of a disappointment for me I'm afraid, especially considering how much I enjoyed the first book in the Wildefire series. Even so, Ella Grace's writing style is so good that I can't possibly miss the opportunity of reading the next book in the series!

Plot: 6/10
Characters: 6/10
Writing: 8/10
Ending:.7 /10
Cover: 7/10

Buy it:

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery




Order of the series:
Book #1 - Midnight Secrets
Book #2 - Midnight Lies

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Book review: Crash Into You by Katie McGarry

Title: Crash Into You
Author: Katie McGarry
Series: Book #3 in the Pushing the Limits series
Release Date: November 26th 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Number of pages: 474 pages
Source: ebook copy provided through NetGalley for review
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Author's WebsiteAmazon, Kindle, B&NBook Depository US, Book Depository UK,

Grade: 5 stars

Novellus superbus!
Goodreads appetizer: The girl with straight As, designer clothes and the perfect life-that's who people expect Rachel Young to be. So the private-school junior keeps secrets from her wealthy parents and overbearing brothers...and she's just added two more to the list. One involves racing strangers down dark country roads in her Mustang GT. The other? Seventeen-year-old Isaiah Walker-a guy she has no business even talking to. But when the foster kid with the tattoos and intense gray eyes comes to her rescue, she can't get him out of her mind.

Isaiah has secrets, too. About where he lives, and how he really feels about Rachel. The last thing he needs is to get tangled up with a rich girl who wants to slum it on the south side for kicks-no matter how angelic she might look.

But when their shared love of street racing puts both their lives in jeopardy, they have six weeks to come up with a way out. Six weeks to discover just how far they'll go to save each other.

My Thoughts: Crash Into You is easily one of my most anticipated releases of this year and for one single reason: Katie McGarry can do no wrong with her stories. And yes, as it was expected, the third book in the Pushing the Limits series is yet again incredibly good! No big surprises here, right? :)

I don't know exactly what is that distinct quality that makes Katie McGarry's stories such a success. Oh, there are plenty of reasons people love her books, be sure about that, but I still can't pinpoint exactly what it is that makes my heart break each time I read one of her stories. At times I think it's the characters and how well written and real they are that make me fall in love with them. But it's not just that. All of McGarry's characters have such a troubled past and present that you can nothing else but care about them. It's like somehow the author is giving voice and hope to all those teens out there that feel like the world is up against them. And she's doing it in the most impressive way!

Needless to say, I loved Crash Into You! Maybe not so much as the previous two books in the series, but still, I enjoyed every single minute of reading Isaiah's story. You see Isaiah was by far my favorite character of the trio. Maybe because he was always feeling like no one ever cared for him, I don't know, all I know is that I had a soft spot for Isaiah from the very first book. And his story didn't disappoint me. Surely, it could have been a little bit better. After all, we're talking about a story written by Katie McGarry here and she has already proved that she can do much better than really good. She can do perfect! And if it wasn't for how quickly Isaiah fell in love with Rachel you might never hear a simple complain from me.

Anyway, I won't go into details about the plot of Crash Into You. If you have read the previous two books in the series you already know what to expect more or less. And that is a riveting story about two so very different people who are so broken inside but still have the strength to love and move on with their lives and finally emerge stronger from any difficulties they meet along their way. So no, I won't tell anything about the plot other than it is very well written and will keep you on your toes the whole time.

The chemistry between Isaiah and Rachel is sizzling even if their relationship progressed a little bit quicker than I would have liked while the characters are yet again the strongest part of the book. And not just the main ones. No, the brilliance of Katie McGarry's writing is that she can easily and just as well explore her secondary characters along with the main ones. She gives voice to everyone who participates in her stories no matter how small an appearance he/she makes.

Verdict: Katie McGarry delivers yet again a heart-breaking story that manages to stay with you long after you're finished reading it. Strong characters and a toe-curling romance are the best attributes of a story that manages to grab the reader's interest from the first until the last page. I just can't wait for the next book in the series to get published!

Plot: 9/10
Characters: 10/10
Writing: 9/10
Ending: 9/10
Cover: 8/10

Buy it:

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery




Order of the series:
Book #1 - Pushing The Limits
Book #2 - Dare You To
Book #3 - Crash Into You

Guest Post by Vanessa Kelly + Giveaway

Today we are very excited to welcome here at Ex Libris author Vanessa Kelly in celebration of her newest release Lost in a Royal Kiss, a brand new novella that will introduce us to the author's upcoming new series Renegade Royals that is set for release early in 2014! Vanessa stops by today with a very interesting interview of her heroine that is sure to make us just more eager to read her story!

Character interview with Linnet St. Clare 
by Vanessa Kelly

Thanks for having me on, Stella. I’ve brought Linnet St. Clare along with me, too. She’s the heroine of Lost in a Royal Kiss, the introductory novella to my new Renegade Royals series. Linnet, perhaps you can tell us a bit about yourself. For instance, how old are you?

My word! A lady never tells her age, or at least they didn’t back in my day. You moderns, I’m sorry to say, seem to have little conception of good manners. But since I do not wish to be rude, I will tell you that I made my debut several years ago and that most people would believe me to be firmly ensconced on the shelf.

Er, so I’m guessing early to mid-twenties?

*frosty stare*

All righty! Let’s get to the next question—where do you live and what do you do?

My family resides in Kew, near the royal palace. Since my esteemed mother is a governess and attendant to the younger children of King George III, I have taken over the management of my mother’s household, which includes looking after my little brother and sister.

So you don’t actually work at Court yourself?

Indeed not, unless you count as work my attempts to improve the behavior of the younger members of the Court.

I would think you’re talking about the royal princes, like the Prince of Wales and his younger brothers. I take it they’re a handful.

You cannot begin to imagine. And at such a young age, too. It’s quite disgraceful.

Actually, I have a very good imagination, but let’s move on to something else. Tell us about Sir Anthony Tait, who I believe is an advisor to King George III.

Umm…

*Vanessa squints* Linnet, are you blushing? I thought you never blushed.

I most certainly am not blushing, especially over someone like Sir Anthony! Indeed, he is the most provoking man I’ve ever met. He’s stubborn, imperious, and is convinced he knows a person’s business better than she does herself.

Sounds like someone else I know. You have to admit he’s very handsome, though.

I suppose so. If, that is, one likes a tall, broad-shouldered, powerful man with piecing hazel eyes and lovely brown hair that he refuses to powder. Not that I’ve ever really paid attention to that sort of thing.

Of course not. But would you say that you and Sir Anthony are friends? He seems to take an uncommon interest in you.

Really? I hadn’t noticed.

You’re blushing again. And, yes, he does. Everyone at Court is talking about it.

I never listen to idle gossip, especially Court gossip. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I do believe I have to step away and have a word with young Dominic Hunter. As you know, he’s the charity boy the queen adopted into the royal household as companion to the young princes. A very misguided notion, if you ask me, since the princes treat him in a very shabby manner. But Dominic is really a very nice boy and I have high hopes for him—if he can overcome his penchant for resorting to fisticuffs to solve his problems.

But wait! I’m not finished with my questions. Oh, drat. She’s gone. I swear that woman never sits still for an instant. Well, if you want to find out more about Linnet, Sir Anthony, and young Dominic Hunter, you can read all about their adventures in my new novella, Lost in a Royal Kiss.

Vanessa Kelly is an award-winning author who was named by Booklist, the review journal of the American Library Association, as one of the "New Stars of Historical Romance." Her sensual, Regency-set historical romances have been nominated for awards in a number of contests, and her second book, Sex and The Single Earl, won the prestigious Maggie Medallion for Best Historical Romance. Vanessa's next series, The Renegade Royals, is due to hit the shelves on Nov. 26 with Lost in a Royal Kiss. Book one in the series, Secrets for Seducing a Royal Bodyguard, will release in January, 2014. 

Find her online at her Website, her Blog, on Twitter or on Facebook


In this thrilling introduction to her Renegade Royals series, Vanessa Kelly transports readers to the court of King George III—where a London street urchin unwittingly plays Cupid, ushering in a new era—and ultimately a new kind of royal…

With her widowed mother working long hours as governess to the royal children, Linnet St. Clare must look after her siblings and run the household. Now she must add to her worries the fate of Dominic, a poor orphan who has inspired the wrath of the king himself. Clearly Linnet has no time to consider her own desires—much less notice the attentions of a certain handsome, powerful magistrate…

Sir Anthony Tait is at a loss for how to capture Linnet’s interest. If only she would be still long enough for courting. Outright seduction seems the only answer. But will his kisses be enough to persuade her—or might Anthony have something to learn from young Dominic about matters of the heart? And in saving the boy’s future, might Anthony and Linnet at last create their own?

Buy it at Amazon - B&N - iBooks
GIVEAWAY RULES:

Vanessa is generously offering an ARC of Secrets for Seducing a Royal Bodyguard to one lucky commenter!


All you need to do is leave a comment telling us: What's your favorite story featuring a bodyguard?

Giveaway is open to US residents only and ends on 6 December 2013!

Good Luck!

The Queen of Dirty Talk is back!

The Queen of Dirty Talking is back! Whether this is your first experience with Tessa Bailey’s dirty talking heroes or you’ve been following her all along, you don’t want to miss out on meeting Brent and Hayden. Their banter is witty, filled with sexual tension, and the sex itself is “fan-your-face” hot, according to an early review from USA Today Happily Ever After.

Here’s a dirty talking snippet just for you guys:

He leaned forward and spoke right against her ear. “Come for me right now and I’ll let you ride me as hard as you want later. I know what gets you off. I saw it in your eyes last night. You want to throw me down and fuck me, duchess? Good. I’m in the mood to let you.”

Now you see why she’s been dubbed the Queen of Dirty Talking!


Brent Mason and Hayden Winstead can't stand each other. She plans exclusive parties for her rich family’s charities. He’s a rough and tumble cop who rigs explosives for a living. Could two people be any less suited for conversation? They think not and prefer to keep it that way.

Unfortunately, their two best friends are deeply, disgustingly in love. Forced together, the mutual attraction simmering beneath the surface of Brent and Hayden’s non-relationship grows with every argument until it explodes into a scintillating night of mind-blowing sex. And it won’t be the last, as far as Brent’s concerned.

Hayden has a secret, though. Her father’s company is relying on a merger to save them from financial ruin, and only Hayden’s marriage to the CEO’s wealthy son can secure the deal. If she’s to protect her family, she’ll have to forget Brent. And he has no intention of being forgotten.


In celebration of her new release, Tessa Bailey’s first book Protecting What’s His is on sale for only ¢99 for two full weeks! (11/24 - 12/7) Just in time to gift it to everyone who appreciates a dirty talker.


She’s running from the law, and the law wants her bad.

The opportunity was just too damn delicious for Ginger Peet to pass up. The purse full of money she finds—$50,000 to be exact—could give her and her teen sister the new start they need. So she grabs the cash, her gothy sibling, and their life-sized statue of Dolly Parton, and blows outta Nashville in a cloud of dust. Chicago, here we come...

Turns out, Chicago has some pretty hot cops. Hot, intense, naughty-lookin’ cops like Derek Tyler, who looks like he could eat a girl up and leave her begging for more. And more. Tempting as he is, getting involved with the sexy homicide lieutenant next door poses a teensy problem for a gal who’s on the lam. But one thing is certain—Derek’s onto her, and he wants more than just a taste.

And as far as he’s concerned, possession is nine-tenths of the law.


Monday, 25 November 2013

Interview with Juliana Ross + Giveaway

Please give a warm welcome to the lovely Juliana Ross, author of the very steamy Improper series: a historical romance series of three very hot and romantic stories! Juliana is here today to tell us more about Improper Arrangements, the second novella in her series, and since I LOVED Improper Relations, the first one, you can bet I have it on my wishlist! ;-) So please give it up for Juliana and if you answer a question at the end you could even win yourself a copy! ;-)

Stella: Hi Juliana, welcome back to Ex Libris! Care to share what you have been up to since you stopped by in December last year?


Juliana: Has it really been a year? Let’s see – I finished writing Improper Arrangements, began edits on it, and then I wrote the third Improper novella, Improper Proposals, and went through the editorial process for it.

Stella: Your brand new release Improper Arrangements is the sequel to your debut novella Improper Relations, which I loved! :-) Can you share with us why you chose to write a sequel and what inspired the story/characters and their romance?

Juliana: I didn’t deliberately set out to write a series of linked books, but when I finished writing Improper Relations I was curious about Leo’s never-seen fiancée (well, almost-fiancée) Lady Alice. I wondered what might have happened to her after her rejection by Leo, and decided she deserved to have a happy ending of her own!

Stella: Could you tell our readers what they can expect of Improper Arrangements?

Juliana: They should certainly expect an entirely different setting – no more stately homes and London high society. Instead, we follow Lady Alice and her guide as they travel on foot through the High Alps – without a single ballroom in sight.


Stella: Could you introduce the hero and heroine of Improper Arrangements to us?

Juliana: Lady Alice is an unusual woman for her time. Not only has she managed to establish herself as an independent woman, free from the control of a husband or other male relative, but she is also committed to living an interesting, useful and even adventurous life. Beneath her confident exterior, however, is a woman with a wounded heart. She was badly hurt when she was young, and this has caused her to turn her back on the possibility of love and marriage. Until, that is, she meets Elijah Philemon Keating.

She is immediately captivated—not only by his unconventional appearance, but also by the way he commands attention without even trying. Here’s her impression of him from early in the book:

He began to make his way toward me, the look in his eyes chill and assessing and more than a little frightening. There was something quite singular about the way he moved, as if he’d swiftly calculated the optimal route from the room’s entrance to my table and was disinclined to expend any more than the minimal amount of time and effort to reach his objective.

As he walked through the room, heads turned to follow his progress. He was the sort of man who must attract attention wherever he went, and all the more so now that he was finely dressed. His hair was still long, though neatly combed, and he’d shaved off his beard. He looked younger without it, I thought. But no less dangerous.

Elijah is an acclaimed mountaineer and explorer, but loathes the limelight and has chosen to life quietly in a small Alpine village. He’s grumpy and irritable and not at all certain that he wishes to accompany Lady Alice on her journey through the Alps. Fortunately he decides to agree, otherwise the story would have ended before it began!

Stella: Could you whet our appetites for Improper Arrangements in Twitter-style (in 140 characters or less)?

Juliana: One independent-minded Victorian lady + one gorgeous adventurer + one trip through the High Alps = Improper Arrangements.

Stella: A little birdie told me that there may be more Improper stories coming, could you tell us more about the rumours? ;-)

Juliana: There is another novella – Improper Proposals, which will be published on March 24, 2014. It tells the story of Lady Alice’s brother Tom, a London publisher, and Caroline Boothroyd, a recent widow in need of a writing project. Let’s just say the book she agrees to write for him is highly improper – and that, once again, sparks fly when they are thrown together.

Stella: Would you like to share with us your future plans, what shall we be on the lookout next?

Juliana: I’m working on a full-length novel – I can’t yet share any details but you will be the first to know when everything is settled! I’m also set to appear on a panel on writing spicy historical romance with Jess Michaels, Kate Pearce and Monica Burns at the RT Readers Convention in New Orleans in May, 2014. Needless to say I’m really looking forward to it.

Persuasion
Stella: After such releases I think it goes without saying that you must be a period drama fan. So tell us: what is your favourite Jane Austen novel or film/TV adaptation?

Juliana: Although I dearly love Pride and Prejudice, my favorite Austen novel is Persuasion, I think because I am so fond of Anne Elliott. Simply thinking about how she suffers in the years between her rejection of Captain Wentworth’s proposal and their finding love together again…it makes me teary every time! I should add that the movie adaptation starring Ciaran Hinds and Amanda Root is magnificent—highly recommended.

Stella: I completely agree! There is so much heartache and love in that adaptation, love it! …favourite Downton Abbey character?

Juliana: The Dowager Countess, absolutely! Not only because I adore Maggie Smith, but also because she adds a much-needed note of levity to the show. I just hope they don’t kill off her character any time soon!

The Dowager Countess played by Maggie Smith

…favourite British tradition?

Juliana: I lived in England during my early twenties and grew very fond of afternoon tea. Not the elaborate kind of tea that tourists eat in grand London hotels – I mean simply a cup of tea properly made (almost impossible to find in North America), served with one or two biscuits (not cookies) that aren’t too sweet or too rich. I still like to brew up a pot of tea on a rainy afternoon and imagine I’m back in England.

Stella: …your favourite authors of historical romance?

Juliana: There are so many! Off the top of my head I would say Elizabeth Hoyt, Tessa Dare, Courtney Milan, Sherry Thomas, Meredith Duran, Loretta Chase, Lisa Kleypas, Julie Anne Long…I could probably add another dozen or so names but you get the idea!

Stella: Thanks so much for stopping by Juliana!:-)

An editor by profession but an historian by inclination, Juliana Ross lives in Toronto, Canada, with her husband and young children. In her spare time she cooks for family and friends, makes slow inroads into her weed patch of a garden, and reads romance novels (the steamier the better) on her eReader.

You can find Juliana on her websiteGoodreadsTwitterFacebook and - her newest obsession - Pinterest.

Improper Arrangements by Juliana Ross

France, 1866

A reckless infatuation nearly ruined Lady Alice Cathcart-Ross in her youth, but from the moment she spies Elijah Philemon Keating scaling a rock face without a rope in sight, the man awakens her long-buried desire. Alice has come to the high Alps in search of a mountaineer, and in Elijah she finds the guide of her dreams.

Though Elijah is known as one of the greatest explorers of the age, a tragic accident has destroyed his taste for adventure and society. Elijah can't deny his attraction to Alice, but he resolves to avoid the entanglement that could accompany it. He promises Alice one week in the Alps, and no more.

Alice agrees, valuing her independence above all else. But as the heights they climb by day are overshadowed by the summits of passion they reach at night, these vows become harder and harder to keep…



GIVEAWAY RULES:

Juliana has very generously offered an ebook copy of Improper Arrangements (or Improper Relations if the winner hasn't read it yet) to a lucky reader!


To be entered in the giveaway just leave a comment and tell us about your favourite period drama or historical romance author.

Giveaway is open worldwide and ends on 6 December 2013!

Good luck!

Let's Celebrate Entangled Edge's New Releases! + Giveaway


Edge, a digital-first single-title romance line from Entangled Publishing, takes its lead from our popular Select imprint but gives its novels an edge in the marketplace by bringing great stories to readers at reasonable prices in a quick-and-easy way. Whether sexy or sweet, traditional romance or love and lust with a women’s fiction bent, at the center of every Edge book is heart. From Urban Fantasy to Contemporary Romance to Science Fiction Romance, Edge has a book for all romance readers—and right at their fingertips! As they say, all’s fair in love and war. To find out more about our titles, chat with authors, participate in special events, and to find out what books are coming next, visit the Entangled website, follow us on Twitter, and like our Facebook page.

Today I'm happy to be featuring Edge's November releases, especially since Robbie Terman's previous Entangled release, Some Like It Spicy, was one of my favourite reads in 2013, so you can bet I can't wait to read her new book! :-D


Some Like it Sinful by Robbie Terman

Book #2 in the Perfect Recipe series


Their attraction is sinfully delicious…

A struggling business and one act of vandalism may have brought them together, but bakery owner Chloe Nelson and professional hockey player Griffin Lange get along like chocolate and pickles. Chloe needs the famous (and famously unattached) Griffin to attract people to her pastries, and Griffin needs the curvaceous and fiery Chloe to keep him out of trouble. A fake relationship to keep the media interested seems like the perfect plan.

But when temptation throws them into bed together, a new plan arises. Why not make the fake real? Griffin’s winning every home game, and Chloe’s business has never been better. Both know it’s only physical—and only temporary. But can they drop their defenses for love, even if it means getting a little bit sinful?




It was bad enough that gods gambled with human souls, but Catherine Sharp’s soul just had to be won by the Greek goddess of Discord, Eris. As if working a dead-end tech support job didn’t suck the life out of her as it was. Now, Cat finds herself performing random tasks for the goddess in her free time.

But when Coyote, the Native American trickster himself, claims to have won her own soul in Mayhem's weekly poker game, Cat wants in on the action. With five sneaky gods upping the ante, Cat needs to find a way to collect the winning chips that could save her soul.

Marius, a handsome yet irritating satyr with his own debt to Eris, might finally come in handy for something. If they play their cards right and work together, Cat and Marius may just get their freedom back. If they don't kill each other or fall in love first.



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Have a Holiday Blast with Entangled's Ever After! + Giveaway


Find Your Ever After in Under An Hour


Ever After features paranormal, sci-fi, and horror novellas, all with the romance you've come to love from Entangled--just in a shorter format. Make sure to like their new Facebook Page and follow them on Twitter.

Today I'm happy to be featuring Ever After's November release!


Time-traveling PhD student Sydney Dahlquist’s first mission sounded simple enough—spend two weeks in December 1810 collecting blood samples from the sick and wounded of Wellington’s army, then go home to modern-day Seattle and Christmas with her family. But when her time machine breaks, stranding her in the past, she must decide whether to sacrifice herself to protect the timeline or to build a new life—and embrace a new love—two centuries before her time.

Rifle captain Miles Griffin has been fascinated by the tall, beautiful "Mrs. Sydney" from the day he met her caring for wounded soldiers. When he stumbles upon her time travel secret on Christmas Eve, he vows to do whatever it takes to seduce her into making her home in his present—by his side.



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