Release by Aly Martinez #coverreveal

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“Aly Martinez is one of the best in the business. You have to read her books.” –Meghan March, New York Times Bestselling author

Release, an all-new emotional, second chance romance standalone from USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez is coming January 5th and we have the incredible cover!

Release AMAZON

Growing up, Ramsey Stewart branded my soul in ways time could never heal.

At twelve, he asked me to be his girlfriend.

At thirteen, he gave me my first kiss.

By sixteen, we’d fallen in love, planned a future together, and had our eyes set on the horizon.

Love never fails, right?

But for Ramsey, it did.

Love failed him.

I failed him.

The entire world failed him.

At seventeen, Ramsey was convicted of killing the boy who assaulted me.

Move on,he wrote in his first and only letter from prison.

Start a new life, he urged.

I don’t love you anymore, he lied.

There was no such thing as giving up on Ramsey. Love may have been our curse, but he was mine—then, now, and forever.

So here I am, twelve long years later, waiting for a man I don’t even know to emerge from between the chain link gates.

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Cover Designed by: Hang Le

Photographer: Wander Aguiar Photography

Model: Zack Salaun

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About Aly

Originally from Savannah, Georgia, USA Today bestselling author Aly Martinez now lives in South Carolina with her husband and four young children.

Never one to take herself too seriously, she enjoys cheap wine, mystery leggings, and olives. It should be known, however, that she hates pizza and ice cream, almost as much as writing her bio in the third person.

She passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a super-sized tumbler of wine by her side.

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Regretting You by Colleen Hoover #newrelease

RegrettingYou
Release Date: December 10, 2019
Publisher: Montlake
 
Summary
 

Morgan Grant and her sixteen-year-old daughter, Clara, would like nothing more than to be nothing alike.

Morgan is determined to prevent her daughter from making the same mistakes she did. By getting pregnant and married way too young, Morgan put her own dreams on hold. Clara doesn’t want to follow in her mother’s footsteps. Her predictable mother doesn’t have a spontaneous bone in her body.

With warring personalities and conflicting goals, Morgan and Clara find it increasingly difficult to coexist. The only person who can bring peace to the household is Chris—Morgan’s husband, Clara’s father, and the family anchor. But that peace is shattered when Chris is involved in a tragic and questionable accident. The heartbreaking and long-lasting consequences will reach far beyond just Morgan and Clara.

While struggling to rebuild everything that crashed around them, Morgan finds comfort in the last person she expects to, and Clara turns to the one boy she’s been forbidden to see. With each passing day, new secrets, resentment, and misunderstandings make mother and daughter fall further apart. So far apart, it might be impossible for them to ever fall back together.

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Excerpt

 

Despite knowing I just pissed my mother off by being half an hour late for curfew, I still can’t stop smiling. That kiss with Miller was worth it. I bring my fingers to my lips.

I’ve never been kissed like that. The guys I’ve kissed in the past all seemed like they were in a hurry, wanting to shove their tongue in my mouth before I changed my mind.

Miller was the opposite. He was so patient, yet in a chaotic way. It was like he’d thought about kissing me so often that he wanted to savor every second of it.

I don’t know that I’ll ever not smile when I think about that kiss. It kind of makes me nervous for school tomorrow. I’m not sure where that kiss leaves us, but it felt like it was a statement. I just don’t know what exactly that statement was.

My phone buzzes in my back pocket. I roll over and pull it out, then fall onto my back again. It’s a text from Miller.

Miller: I don’t know about you, but sometimes when something significant happens, I get home and think of all the things I wish had gone differently. All the things I wish I would have said.

Me: Is that happening now?

Miller: Yes. I don’t feel like I was entirely forthcoming with you.

I roll onto my stomach, hoping to ease the nausea that just passed through me. It was going so well…

Me: What weren’t you honest about?

Miller: I was honest. Just not entirely forthcoming, if there’s a difference. I left a lot out of our conversation that I want you to know.

Me: Like what?

Miller: Like why I’ve liked you for as long as I have.

I wait for him to elaborate, but he doesn’t. I’m staring at my phone with so much intensity that I almost throw it when it rings unexpectedly. It’s Miller’s phone number. I hesitate before answering it, because I rarely ever talk on the phone. I much prefer texting. But he knows I have my phone in my hand, so I can’t very well send it to voice mail. I swipe my finger across the screen and then roll off the bed and head to my bathroom for more privacy. I sit on the edge of the tub.

“Hello?”

“Hey,” he says.

“Sorry. It’s too much to text.”

“You’re kind of freaking me out with all the innuendos.”

“Oh. No, it’s all good. Don’t be nervous. I just should have said this to you in person.” Miller inhales a deep breath, and then on the exhale, he starts talking. “When I was fifteen, I watched you in a school play. You had the lead role, and at one point, you performed a monologue that went on for like two whole minutes. You were so convincing and you looked so heartbroken I was ready to walk onto the stage and hug you. When the play was finally over and the actors came back out onto the stage, you were smiling and laughing, and there wasn’t a trace of that character left in you. I was in awe, Clara. You have this charisma about you that I don’t think you’re aware of, but it’s captivating. I was a scrawny kid as a sophomore, and even though I’m a year older than you, I hadn’t quite filled out yet, and I had acne and felt inferior to you, so I never worked up the courage to approach you. Another year went by, and I continued to admire you from afar. Like that time you ran for school treasurer and tripped walking off the stage, but you jumped up and did this weird little kick and threw your arms up in the air and made the entire audience laugh. Or that time Mark Avery popped your bra strap in the hallway, and you were so sick of him doing it that you followed him to his classroom, reached inside your hoodie, and took off your bra and then threw it at him. I remember you yelling something like, ‘If you want to touch a bra so damn bad, just keep it, you perv!’ Then you stormed out. It was epic. Everything you do is epic, Clara. Which is why I never had the courage to approach you, because an epic girl needs an equally epic guy, and I guess I’ve just never felt epic enough for you. I’ve said epic so many times in the last fifteen seconds—I’m so sorry.”

He’s out of breath when he finally stops talking.

I’m smiling so hard my cheeks ache. I had no idea he felt this way. No idea.

I wait a few seconds to make sure he’s done; then I finally respond. I’m pretty sure he can hear from my voice alone that I’m smiling. “First of all, it’s hard to believe you were ever insecure. And second, I think you’re pretty epic, too, Miller. Always have. Even when you were scrawny and had acne.”

He laughs a little. “Yeah?”

“Yeah.”

I can hear him sigh. “Glad I got that off my chest, then. See you at school tomorrow?”

“Good night.”

We end the call, and I don’t know how long I sit and stare at my phone.

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Q&A with Author Colleen Hoover

 

You are ‘label-less’ in the fact that you write in several genres. Readers never know what to expect next. If someone asks, how do you label yourself?

When I self-published my first novel I had no idea what genre to put it in. I thought I had written a drama but it turns to that I had written a romance. I’ve learned a lot since then, but I still don’t put a lot of weight in genre when I write. When your best friend is begging you to read a book, it’s not going to matter what genre it is when someone you trust is passionate about the story.

To keep all of your stories and characters straight, you must be very organized.

I’m the most disorganized person you will ever meet! I have no schedule. I can’t wake up before nine in the morning. I probably don’t go to bed until like three in the morning. I usually work about 16 hours a day.

What happens if you get blocked when you are writing?

If I get stuck writing, I go for a drive and play music. Music really helps me plot. I love The Avett Brothers, X Ambassadors, Airborne Toxic Event…I could go on and on.

What can you tell readers about your latest release Regretting You?

I would spoil it if I told you about it! Most of my books are like that. I can’t say what they are about or it spoils it. But I can say that Regretting You is told from a dual point-of-view centered on the inner lives of both a teen and adult protagonist.

Sounds like lots of different types of readers will be interested!

Absolutely. I wanted to write a book that bridged the gap between young adult and contemporary romance so that mothers can read with their daughters. I think it’s exciting to see people sharing reading experiences.

About the Author

ColleenHooverColleen Hoover is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of several novels, including the bestselling women’s fiction novel It Ends with Us and the bestselling psychological thriller Verity. She has won the Goodreads Choice Award for Best Romance three years in a row—for Confess (2015), It Ends with Us (2016), and Without Merit (2017). Confess was adapted into a seven-episode online series. In 2015, Hoover and her family founded the Bookworm Box, a bookstore and monthly subscription service that offers signed novels donated by authors. All profits go to various charities each month to help those in need. Hoover lives in Texas with her husband and their three boys. Visit www.colleenhoover.com.
 
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Beard Necessities (Winston Brothers #7) by Penny Reid #newrelease #bookreview

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Billy Winston’s family is going to see him happy and in love if it’s the last thing they do.

Beard Necessities, the final standalone in the bestselling romantic comedy Winston Brothers series from New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Penny Reid, is available now!

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No one deserves a happily-ever-after quite as much as the second oldest Winston brother and his lady love, Claire McClure (aka Scarlet St. Claire). Cruelty and circumstance tore them apart almost twenty years ago. Secrecy and bitterness kept them separated.

But you know who’s tired of their separation and stubbornness? Everyone. Especially Billy Winston’s family. And now they’re going to do something about it.

Well-meaning interference means the star-crossed lovers can’t stop tripping over each other in the hills of Tuscany, the catacombs of Rome, and the waterways of Venice. Billy and Claire find themselves thrown together and at the mercy of the Winston siblings’ shenanigans.

But will their forced proximity bring them together? Or push them even further apart?

This second-chance romance brings back the entire Winston gang, playing cupid in one last story of love, hi-jinks, and family collusion.

BEARD NECESSITIES is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, and can be read as a stand-alone, but it’s probably best read after books 0.5, 2, 3, 5, and 6 of the Winston Brothers séries.
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My Review

Rating : ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

The conclusion of Billy and Scarlet’s journey is a beautiful story of second chance that encompasses so many feelings on all levels. My heart broke for them and what they have been through. Their story illustrates the reality of both sides of a soulmate relationship and the consequences both sides suffer when only one makes a choice. Scarlet fled, changed her name and married a man she didn’t love. She is convinced that Billy abandoned her and she has closed herself off to possible happiness. Billy was her dream and her solace, but fear railroaded their past. He made a difficult choice to protect her.

These characters are so easy to love and attach yourself to. Both are lost and damaged, yet completely perfect for one another. I wanted them to find peace. I wanted them to find happiness. I love that the one good thing they had going for them was each other. I was in awe of how strong their love was and I was rooting for them all the way! They were truly meant to be together. When their intense journey of forgiveness, love, healing, self-discovery and understanding finally unfolds, you feel immensely satisfied as a reader to have reached their happy ending. It takes a while, a past full of tears, regret, resentment and many mistakes to get there, but in the end it seems everything is just how it should be. Of course, the Winston siblings, including Cletus, were all involved in helping Billy and Scarlet reconnect and I loved just having them around with their families.

Many thanks to the author and Social Butterfly PR for the invitation to the blog tour for this book!

Download your copy today!

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Excerpt

Strolling to the desk, I set down the milk and cookies, crossed my arms and turned to face my brother. “You’re pointing out that Scarlet and I will see each other during various family functions.”

“Correct.”

“And, therefore,” I continued reasonably, “I need to be nice to her.” I knew that already, and tonight—after watching her face crumple and feeling a part of my soul shrivel at the sight—I’d finally accepted it. I would be nice. I would be so damn nice. I’d be a saint.

But then Cletus said, “No, Billy. Not nice. Nice is for tea parties and doctor’s visits. You need to woo her.”

I blinked once. “Woo her.”

“That’s right. You need to woo the pants off her, hopefully literally, and then make that woman yours. Permanently. Once and for all. Put a ring on it. Woo is where it’s at. Jenn still has the centerpieces from our wedding if you’d like to borrow them.” During this enlightening monologue, he’d moseyed over and picked up the glass of milk and a cookie, dunked the cookie into the milk, and then took a bite just as he’d finished his listings of delusions.

“That’s never going to happen.”

“Why not? Those centerpieces are lovely. You don’t know your color scheme yet. Ask Scarlet before you decide.”

I ground my teeth. “Scarlet and I are never going to happen, Cletus.”

He shook his head firmly. “I’m disappointed in your lack of ambition, Billy. I thought we’d be on the same page. But I see now, I’m going to have to take a tough love approach.”

“Cletus—”

“I’m going to give you one chance,” he said, then pushed the rest of the cookie in his mouth and spoke around it as he continued, “One more chance is all you get. I’ve waited long enough for this and you know my feelings on delayed gratification.”

“Pardon?”

“It’s overrated.” He took a gulp of milk and picked up another cookie.

“No, Cletus. One chance on what?”

“I’m giving you one chance. One.” He pointed the cookie at me. “Tomorrow, you’re going to go find her, apologize to her for whatever that kerflufflefuck was I walked in on. Tell her you were suffering from temporary insanity, hopped up on illicit drugs, abducted by asshole probing aliens, whatever. I’m giving you one chance to make this right, and if you don’t take it, you are not going to like what happens next.”

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Enter the giveaway for a signed paperback set of the entire Winston Brothers Series!

http://bit.ly/2Y4LKcN

image1Meet Penny Reid

Penny Reid is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Best Selling Author of the Winston Brothers, Knitting in the City, Rugby, and Hypothesis series. She used to spend her days writing federal grant proposals as a biomedical researcher, but now she just writes books. She’s also a full time mom to three diminutive adults, wife, daughter, knitter, crocheter, sewer, general crafter, and thought ninja.

Connect with Penny

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PennyReidWriter/

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2lakzsD

Twitter: @ReidRomance

Mailing List: http://pennyreid.ninja/newsletter/

www.pennyreid.ninja

The Lineup (Brentwood Baseball #3) by Meghan Quinn #newrelease #bookreview

THE LINEUP (Brentwood Baseball #3) by Meghan Quinn
Release Date: December 5th

Add to Goodreads:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48323337-the-lineup

AVAILABLE NOW!
Amazon US: https://amzn.to/35gDEjT
Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2XvCyhE
Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2CXVgFa
Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2Oss522

Blurb:

Want to know a secret?

It’s about that girl over there.
Don’t look, but she’s the one in the power suit—with the long, black hair and the serious expression, the one I’m about to go on a date with . . .

Yeah, according to her, she “accidentally” donated an obscene amount of money to my charity — The Lineup — to win said date but I found out the truth. Miss. Button Up Blouse has a secret, passionate crush on me.

I didn’t know her name until two days ago, despite the friends we have in common.
Was I oblivious? Probably.
Was I blind to it? Definitely.

But I’m no fool, I see it now. The High Heel Harlot wants more than just a date with Jason Orson, she wants to be able to claim the best butt in baseball as hers.

Here’s another secret . . . she has no idea I know.

My Review

Rating : ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

This book was the perfect mixture of smart, funny, sweet and sexy! I loved every minute of it. Meghan Quinn has as extremely addicting writing style, her characters are easy to connect with and her comedic approach to romance is irresistible. The banter between Jason and Dottie is absolutely hilarious and I spent most of the book with a huge smile on my face. The banter isn’t the only thing this couple has going for them though, they also have fantastic chemistry.

Jason Orson is a famous baseball player who has recently been traded to a major team in his home state. The trade will also benefit the foundation he has created in honor of his twin brother. Dorothy, “Dottie”, Domico is a strong-willed businesswoman who lives in a very chauvinistic world and doesn’t trust easily.  Jason and Dottie were in college together, but never were friends. An accidental donation to Jason’s foundation brings them together.

Jason is such a heartthrob, he is sweet, funny and incredibly sexy. What I liked most about him is his caring and thoughtful nature, he is a genuinely nice guy. Jason and Dottie are opposites. Where Jason wears his emotions on his sleeve, Dottie is guarded and uptight. I loved the transition of their relationship from being awkward to being able to communicate well with each other.  Despite some initial reticence, I liked seeing Dottie give up some of her control and just operate on her emotions. Jason can somehow manage Dottie and her closed off, hardened personality. He has a way of putting her at ease, he teases her and pushes her buttons. He helps her see the positive and live in the moment.

This romantic comedy is a quick, entertaining and easy read. It was great to join all the familiar characters from “The Dugout” and “The Locker Room” again.

Thanks for stopping by and happy reading!

My honest review is based on an advanced reader copy of this book.

Excerpt

**JASON**

It isn’t in my nature to cry over burnt ham, but here I am, tearing up like a jackass, because the meal I’ve been reluctantly slaving over for the past four hours is two shades away from charred dust.

I had it all planned out. The timing was right, the recipes perfected, the table decorated with impeccably folded napkins that impersonated angelic swans, and polished silver that I scrubbed for an hour until I could see my balls in the reflection. Nothing says polished silverware like a spoon that gives you a clear upside-down view of your gonads.

But even with countless hours of preparing this feast, naked as the day I was born with only an apron to cover my man-loins, I still ended up with a scorched ham doused in fire extinguisher agent because somehow, the damn thing caught on fire.

Imagine this, a grown-ass man—no, not just a grown-ass man, but a man at the fresh age of twenty-eight, built like a linebacker with buttocks you can bounce rocks off . . . thanks to squatting for a living—dancing around the kitchen on his twinkle toes, arms flailing with pink and white potholders attached to his hands, screaming like a banshee, as flames light up the Jenn-Air double oven where the brown sugar and pineapple ham resided.

Are you seeing it?

Add the imagery of said man naked, dick and balls harmoniously bouncing in panic while the apron his “girlfriend” got him that says Eat my food, Lick my dick, unravels in the fit to unleash the fire extinguisher.

That was me . . . a minute ago.

Frantic, screaming, and all in all losing any last shred of my man card I had left.

It’s why I’m currently weeping like a nitwit into the flaps of my apron, wondering where I went wrong.

If we’re going to be honest with each other—and I would like to establish honesty with you—I’ll admit, I’ve always leaned toward the sensitive side. You know, the cuddly grizzly bear. Big and intimidating but a fucking gooey butterball heart on the inside.

Tell me a love story. I’ll listen the crap out of it.

The Bachelor? Why yes, that’s one of my favorite shows.

Do I smile when sharing a candlelit dinner with myself, followed by a nice long soak in a bubble bath while Enya—the fucking goddess of all voices—plays in the background? I sure as shit do.

But if some ignorant asswipe gets in my face on the ball field, stirring up trouble, I’m the first to lay a fist across his jaw and the first to be thrown out of a game.

And I’m not even sorry about it.

People are arriving in an hour. I’m vulnerable as fuck with my bare ass resting against the cold white-oak floor of my girl’s apartment, while a lonely tear streams down my freshly shaven cheek. I have no main dish, and the apartment smells like burnt rabbit turd.

Why am I in this hopeless predicament?

Because of one person.

One single person who flipped my life upside down.

A bombshell in a suit, a ravenous sex-fiend in the sheets, a classy and sophisticated tight-ass in the boardroom. She’s a knockout who’s always on my mind. She’s the girl you do things for, that you never thought you’d ever do . . .

Like cook a fancy-as-fuck four-course meal for her and her business associates while practicing interesting conversational starters to ensure the night flows smoothly.

Back in college, I might have been referred to as the mother hen of the boys. I might have cooked at least two meals a week for the guys in the loft, and yeah, I was the ironing wizard, the one everyone turned to, to get out the most stubborn wrinkles. The title has carried on over the years, but my creativity in the kitchen has dwindled with the lack of time, my ironing is now done by my apartment keeper once a week, and the fresh flowers scattered around my place? They’re more dead now than alive.

My point—I’m not the lady of the house I used to be. But I’ve been getting back into the swing of it.

So when my girl asked me to perform the impossible feat of an intimate dinner for four, I should have ordered in, tossed everything in serving dishes, and called it a night.

But nooooooooo, I had to attempt to be a goddamn hero and try to cook everything myself.

And all for what?

For one girl?

No. Not just one girl. The girl who owns my balls, who has a grip so tight on them that if she asked me to bellow out my ABCs in soprano while swirling my finger around my belly button . . . I would.

Who is this girl that has brought me to the brink of boo-boo smush bear insanity and caused me to weep like a schoolgirl in the corner of the apartment?

There’s only one lady with more than enough ovaries to buckle the knees of the mighty Jason Orson.

The one and only Dorothy “Dottie” Domico.

About the Author:
USA Today Bestselling Author, wife, adoptive mother, and peanut butter lover. Author of romantic comedies and contemporary romance, Meghan Quinn brings readers the perfect combination of heart, humor, and heat in every book.

Connect with Meghan:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/meghanquinnauthor
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7360513.Meghan_Quinn
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authormeghanquinn/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorMegQuinn
Website: http://authormeghanquinn.com
Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/meghan-quinn
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2LitE4x

Disarm (The Dumonts #2) by Karina Halle #newrelease #bookreview

Disarm by Karina Halle
Title: Disarm
Author: Karina Halle
Release Date: November 19, 2019
Publisher: Montlake
 

Summary

 

Seraphine Dumont seems to have it all: she’s gorgeous, brilliant, and part of one of France’s most illustrious dynasties. But underneath the facade, Seraphine struggles to hold it all together. Besides grieving her adoptive father’s suspicious and sudden death, she also shares a tenuous role in the family business with Blaise, her in-name-only cousin. As tumultuous as their history is, he may be the only member of the deceptive Dumont family she can trust.

Seraphine is a temptation Blaise can’t resist. The torch he’s carried for years still burns. It’s his secret—a quiet obsession just out of reach. Until his brother demands that he spy on the increasingly cagey Seraphine, whom their father considers a dispensable Dumont outlier. But the more Blaise watches her and the closer he gets, the more he sees Seraphine may have every right to be suspicious. And she could be the next one in danger—from his own family.

As blood runs hot and hearts give in, Seraphine and Blaise have only each other. But can their love survive the secrets they’re about to uncover?

My Review
Rating : 4 Stars

I love it when a book keeps me at the edge of my seat, and the danger, excitement and romance tick all the right boxes for me. Blaise and Seraphine were very much alike. They both were strong, determined, loyal and stubborn. Despite their antagonism, the romance between them was evident from the beginning.

A dark past has molded Blaise Dumont into the man he is today. It determines his actions and behavior. He is complex and manipulative, which is just a mask to hide his true feelings for his cousin, Seraphine Dumont, the adopted daughter of Ludovic and Eloise Dumont. I liked the way he became protective of her, and loved seeing him stand up to his father and brother for her. Despite the family wealth and power, he has not led the happiest of life and is lonely and disillusioned. His family is totally dysfunctional, with relationships based on greed and power play. There is a strong rivalry between him and his brother.

Seraphine is no damsel in distress, she is focused and smart. I really loved her character, she was strong yet vulnerable. She doesn’t trust Blaise and won’t give him the power to hurt her. I loved the banter between them as they dealt with old memories. They both want to clear the air but nothing is simple between them.

The thrill and suspense really drew me, I liked that the book kept me guessing. The mystery surrounding Seraphine’s father death was well done, the pacing was perfect and the ending was not rushed. The author really took the time to develop the storyline, with some flashbacks, and the characters.

Many thanks to the publisher for my advanced copy of this book.

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Excerpt

“We can never be together, Blaise,” Seraphine says, like frustration is rolling through her. “I know you understand that.”

“But it doesn’t mean we can’t try.”

“No,” she says and suddenly gets up to her feet, walking out of the room. “No. I can’t do this. I can’t handle this,” I hear her cry out as she heads down the hall.

I get up and run after her, grabbing her by the arm and pulling her right up against me, and she opens her mouth to protest and then my mouth is on hers, swallowing her words.

I kiss her with everything I have, every bit of anger and frustration and the years of lust and pining and wanting. I should be more gentle after the night she’s had, but I can’t help myself; in fact, I think I’m seconds from turning into an animal as I hold the back of her head and press my hand at the small of her waist, keeping her pressed as close to me as possible.

Her tongue slides across mine, hot and fevered and—

She pulls back, gasping for breath, and slaps me across the face.

Whack.

That hurt.

“What the hell is wrong with you?” she says. “What are you doing? What am I doing?”

Her face is red with anger, perhaps even shame. I mean, my cheek is stinging from her powerful wallop, but even so, I expected it. She’s always been the type of woman to put you in your place. But I didn’t expect her to slide so easily back into hating me.

“Don’t pretend you haven’t been dreaming about that,” I tell her, trying to control myself. “Don’t pretend that you haven’t wanted that, wanted me, all these years.”

“The only thing I’ve been dreaming about, Blaise, is getting justice for my father. That’s it. That’s all that matters. And as far as I’m concerned, you’re no better than the rest of them.”

Anger pokes at me, building up inside. “Hey,” I say, my inflection razor sharp. “I risked my neck tonight for you. I saved you from a bad situation. And more than that, I let you know the truth. I chose you over my family.”

“And I’m choosing not to trust you,” she says. “You’ve given me no sign over the years that I mean anything to you at all. Why should I believe you now? Why do that when it might derail everything I’m working on?” Something comes over her, a flash in her eyes, as she’s realizing something. “This is all a setup, isn’t it? This is just something that Pascal is having you do, just like you followed me. You’re supposed to tell me all this nonsense about wanting me and staying celibate like some joke and waiting for me, and it’s all a lie to get my guard down. If you’re telling me I’m in danger, it’s because you’re putting me there.”

I knew she’d go this route at some point, but even so, it stings. “That’s not it at all. Seraphine, please, I’m serious.”

“You just want me to back off because I’m close to the truth,” she says, shaking her head wildly as the idea takes over. “For all I know, every single thing this evening that’s come out of your mouth has been a complete lie, all to throw me off.”

I run my hands down my face, trying to squash my frustration. I knew this was coming, and yet that tiny coal of hope was always burning inside. “That’s not true,” I mutter into my hands, but I know when she gets like this that there’s no changing her mind.

“Get out,” she says.

I look up to see her opening the door and gesturing for me to hurry up.

“You’re making a big mistake by not trusting me,” I tell her.

“And I don’t take threats very well. Get out, and if I see you around me again . . .”

I almost laugh. “You will see me again. At work tomorrow.”

“Right. I almost forgot that you’re taking over my job.” She runs her fingers under her eyes and sighs so defeatedly that leaving her feels like a crime.

“It’s not like that,” I tell her.

“Just go,” she says quietly, holding open the door and looking away, like she can’t be bothered to face me.

“You know where to reach me, if anything happens,” I tell her as I walk past and out into the hall.

“If anything happens, you’ll be the first one I’ll blame,” she says to me.

Before I can say anything in response, she closes the door in my face.

Q&A: Author Karina Halle 

 
1. To start off, can you tell us a little about your main characters from Disarm. Seraphine and Blaise have quite a history (not to mention they share the same last name!)

Seraphine and Blaise Dumont are (gasp) cousins. But not to worry, they aren’t blood-related. Seraphine is actually from India and was adopted by Ludovic Dumont when she was a young girl. Even though she was brought into the “nice” side of the family, she has always had trouble fitting in. Her looks, her accent, the fact that she was born poor and discarded like trash, gives her a very different perspective to life than her affluent family. This POV has colored her into the very outspoken, vibrant and feisty woman she is today – she is definitely one of my favorite female characters I’ve written.

Blaise, of course, belongs to the bad side of the family, though there were hints in the first book, Discretion, that he’s not as bad as you would think. In fact, he’s a lot like Seraphine, a bit of an outcast and the black sheep of his family. As we read Disarm, we also discover the history that Blaise and Seraphine have together which sets up for the angst, tension and hate for each other that they have in the present day, especially as Seraphine thinks Blaise has something to do with her father’s death.

2. They live in a world of privilege that most of us cannot fathom. What are the biggest pluses and some minuses of living with fabulous wealth?

The biggest plus is the material things: houses, cars, clothes, jets, vacations. You name it, they have it. You would also think a great deal of freedom comes with money too and it does but with that sort of wealth, it makes you go to great lengths to keep it. So that freedom still ties you to the wealth, in maintaining it and getting more of it. Of course, it breeds some pretty out of touch and unscrupulous characters, too, and you can never know who to trust when your world (and family) revolves around money instead of love.

3. What about Blaise makes him totally unique and different from all other book boyfriends?

The torch he has carried for Seraphine for so many years. This man is the epitome of yearning and pining for someone you can’t have, more so than most book boyfriends you’ve come across (and I won’t spoil exactly how but you’ll find out in the book just how secretly devoted to his cousin he is). He’s also an anti-hero, a man who has done some crooked stuff but still tries to do the right thing, even if it comes at the expense of his own family.

4. Seraphine has faced many difficulties during her life, but one of her toughest challenges is thinking Blaise abandoned her. How does she deal with this heartbreak?

She deals with it the way that Seraphine deals with any hardship—she tucks it away deep down inside and rises above it. She’ll force herself to be strong – her pride is very powerful – and she’ll trick herself into thinking she never cared about him to begin with. It’s much easier to paint Blaise with a villainous brush, that way it doesn’t hurt so much.

5. Extreme events are said to bring out a person’s true character. What harrowing situations do Seraphine and Blaise get entangled in and what does this say about them?

 
There isn’t anything more extreme than fighting for your life, and the two of them have had to do that in this book. Literally. But they willingly walked into those situations as a way to put an end to the tangled web they’ve been caught in. It says they would rather face it and fight than flee. This is especially true for Blaise, who, at the end of the book, choses to confront his loved ones face to face, even if it potentially means making some difficult choices.

6. What scene from the book do you think readers will enjoy the most and why?

Personally, I love the scene at the end, a nail-biting showdown between Blaise and his brother Pascal (and his father, too). That was a blast to write and read, I basically just watched it all unfold in my head and it had my heart pumping as if I was watching a movie. It’s DELICIOUS. Romance-wise, I think the flashbacks are pretty special, particularly their first kiss in Italy. There was something about that scene that felt so real.

7. It is often said that writing is re-writing. What were some things that didn’t make it into the book that you were hoping to add?

Nothing. It’s all in there, baby! If anything, scenes were added during edits.

8. What did you learn about yourself while writing this book?

 

I learned a lot about Muay Thai fighting moves haha.

9. What do you want readers to take away from reading this book?

 
That family isn’t just through blood, and that sometimes in order to do the right thing and be your own person, you musn’t be afraid to stand up to your family, even if it means tension or separation down the line.

10. Who is the next Dumont on your list to receive their own story?

The infamous Pascal. And believe me when I say, this villain’s story will both wow and win people over. His book is even more thrilling and dramatic than Disarm and I can’t wait for everyone to read it!

About the Author

 
KarinaHalleKarina Halle, a former travel writer and music journalist, is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of The Pact, A Nordic King, and Sins & Needles, as well as fifty other wild and romantic reads. She, her husband, and their adopted pit bull live in a rain forest on an island off British Columbia, where they operate a B&B that’s perfect for writers’ retreats. In the winter, you can often find them in California or on their beloved island of Kauai, soaking up as much sun (and getting as much inspiration) as possible. For more information, visit www.authorkarinahalle.com/books.
 
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Outmatched by Kristen Callihan & Samantha Young #bookreview

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Outmatched by Kristen Callihan and Samantha Young

Release Date: November 19, 2019

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Outmatched, an all-new standalone contemporary romance by New York Times bestselling authors Kristen Callihan and Samantha Young.

What happens when a boxer finds chemistry with a geek?

Parker Brown can’t believe she needs to hire a fake boyfriend. When she landed her dream job in renewable energy, she thought she’d be entering a world at the forefront of progressive thinking. But the head boss prefers to promote employees who are “settled.” Thankfully, she’s found the perfect candidate, a fellow intellectual looking for some quick cash. What Parker gets is his protective big brother—Rhys Morgan. The tall, muscled ex-boxer with a foul mouth shows up just as her boss does, and now she’s stuck with the manipulative jerk.

Responsibility weighs heavily on Rhys. Now permanently out of the ring, he’s trying to hold together his late father’s gym and keep his younger brother, Dean, on the straight and narrow. To save Dean from himself, Rhys takes his place, ready to give this society girl a piece of his mind. Instead, he finds an opportunity. Even though they can hardly stand each other, posing as Parker’s boyfriend is a win-win deal. She gets to keep her job, and he’ll charm her star-struck boss into sponsoring his gym.

Problem is, they can barely keep their hands off each other. And what started as an easy deal isn’t so easy anymore. Because what future can a rough ex-boxer, afraid to open his heart, and a polished society geek, who has sworn off real relationships, possibly have?

They say opposites attract. These opposites are about to combust on impact.

My Review

Rating : ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

This was an enjoyable read. A Fifth Avenue princess gets an ex professional boxer to pose as her boyfriend to help her professionally. I absolutely love the « fake relationship » trope, it’s very classic and predictable contemporary romance, but a nice break from darker plots. These two characters are opposites but work very well together. I enjoyed the contrast between them. Rhys is rough around the edges, obnoxious and intimidating. Parker is privileged, smart and comes from money. I loved her no-nonsense attitude, her zest and wit.

Rhys’s professional career has come to an end and he is in danger of losing his sole source of income, his gym that is about to be repossessed by the bank. He ambushes Parker to take his younger brother’s place posing as her fake boyfriend. To attend events with a sexy athlete on her arm should not be tough, but the man pushes her buttons.

Both main characters were warm and touching. I loved the fiery back and forth dialogue between Parker and Rhys, their constant bickering was fun. Sparks fly between these two both with chemistry and tempers. Rhys is cocky and brash, and one hot-blooded alpha! I loved how much he wanted Parker, and how hard he tried to fight it. She absolutely tested his self-control! Parker is insecure and feels stupid for putting herself in the position of being a mere monetary means to end.

This was an entertaining read with great characters, amusing dialogue, but the plot itself was a bit thin in my opinion.

Many thanks to the authors and Social Butterfly PR for my copy of this book.

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Download your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2ZwJjPt

Amazon Worldwide: mybook.to/OutmatchedKCSY

Kobo: http://bit.ly/OutmatchedKCSYKobo

Apple Books: https://apple.co/2zsHUyR

Nook: http://bit.ly/368dv84

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/OutmatchedKCSYGR

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Excerpt:

AngryTink: Hey. This is Parker. Parker Brown.

My phone dinged loudly. I fumbled around my bed, finally finding the damn thing under a pillow. Wiping the sleep off my face, I rolled onto my back and read the text that had pulled me out of a pleasant sleep. I smiled. It was just so … Parker. Settling in, I answered her.

RhysThis: Don’t have to tell me who you are. Your number is programmed on my phone. What do you want?

AngryTink: Well, good morning to you too, Happy Pants.

My smile turned into an evil grin. The girl was always going to punch back and make it count.

RhysThis: That’s Mr. Happy Pants. Though, TBH, my pants aren’t too happy at the moment. Want to help me out with that?

AngryTink: Tempting. Truly. But, no.

RhysThis: RU sure? ‘Cuz Happy Pants Rhys is much more agreeable than Sad That He Had to Self-Satisfy Rhys.

AngryTink: Would you please behave?

RhysThis: I’m not the one who mentioned the emotional state of my pants.

AngryTink: ARGH!

A chuckle rumbled in my chest as my thumbs tapped out a response I knew would piss her off more.

RhysThis: Was that even English? Honestly, Ms. Brown, I thought you were educated.

She took a moment to answer. I could picture her, phone in hand, grinding her teeth.

AngryTink: You’re deliberately trying to annoy me, aren’t you?

RhysThis: You’re quick. I’ll give you that.

AngryTink: Mr. Morgan, I’m about ten seconds away from finding an alternate fake boyfriend. A goat on a rope would be a better candidate at this point.

It was cute she thought that was threatening.

RhysThis: Yeah, probably. But the goat doesn’t have a signed contract. I do, Tinker Bell.

AngryTink: ARGH@!!

RhysThis: You’re kind of cute when you talk pirate.

About Kristen:

Kristen Callihan is an author because there is nothing else she’d rather be. She is a RITA winner and three-time nominee and winner of two RT Reviewer’s Choice awards. Her novels have garnered starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly and the Library Journal, as well as being awarded top picks by many reviewers. Her debut book FIRELIGHT received RT Magazine’s Seal of Excellence, was named a best book of the year by Library Journal, best book of Spring 2012 by Publisher’s Weekly, and was named the best romance book of 2012 by ALA RUSA. When she is not writing, she is reading.


Connect with Kristen:

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/KristenCallihan/

Twitter – Kris10Callihan

Website – http://www.kristencallihan.com/

Amazon – https://amzn.to/2zrf3Lo

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/Kristen_Callihan

About Samantha:

Samantha Young is a New York Times and #1 International bestselling author from Stirlingshire, Scotland. On Dublin Street was Samantha’s first adult contemporary romance series and has sold in thirty countries. She has since published over thirteen romance titles including the New York Times Bestsellers Into the Deep, Hero, and her most recent contemporary romance Play On. When writing Adult Paranormal romance she writes under the pen name S. Young.

Connect with Samantha:

Social media links:

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/AuthorSamanthaYoung/

Website – http://authorsamanthayoung.com

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/authorsamanthayoung/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/AuthorSamYoung

Pinterest – https://www.pinterest.co.uk/samyoungauthor/

Amazon – http://amzn.to/2H47kEP

Goodreads – http://bit.ly/2FWgYdn

Bookbub – http://bit.ly/2D241eO

Tease Me (A Stark International Novel) by J. Kenner #coverreveal

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author J. Kenner comes a new story in her Stark International series…

Tease Me, an all-new steamy, full length standalone in the Stark World from New York Times and #1 International bestselling author J. Kenner, is coming March 10th!

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Entertainment reporter Jamie Archer knew it would be hard when her husband, Stark Security Chief Ryan Hunter, was called away for a long-term project in London. The distance is difficult to endure, but Jamie trusts the deep and passionate love that has always burned between them. At least until a mysterious woman from Ryan’s past shows up at his doorstep, her very presence threatening to destroy everything that Jamie holds dear.

Ryan never expected to see Felicia Randall again, a woman with whom he shared a dark past and a dangerous secret. The first and only woman he ever truly failed.

Desperate and on the run, Felicia’s come to plead for his help. But while Ryan knows that helping her is the only way to heal old wounds, he also knows that the mission will not only endanger the life of the woman he holds most dear, but will brutally test the deep trust that binds Jamie and Ryan together.
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Pre-order your copy today: http://bit.ly/2O56deb

Amazon Paperback: https://amzn.to/2XulV5S

jkennerAbout J. Kenner

Kenner (aka Julie Kenner) is the New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, Wall Street Journal and #1 International bestselling author of over one hundred novels, novellas and short stories in a variety of genres.

Though known primarily for her award-winning and international bestselling erotic romances (including the Stark and Most Wanted series) that have reached as high as #2 on the New York Times bestseller list, JK has been writing full time for over a decade in a variety of genres including paranormal and contemporary romance, “chicklit” suspense, urban fantasy, and paranormal mommy lit.

JK has been praised by Publishers Weekly as an author with a “flair for dialogue and eccentric characterizations” and by RT Bookclub for having “cornered the market on sinfully attractive, dominant antiheroes and the women who swoon for them.” A six time finalist for Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA award, JK took home the first RITA trophy awarded in the category of erotic romance in 2014 for her novel, Claim Me (book 2 of her Stark Trilogy) and in 2017 for Wicked Dirty in the same category. Her Demon Hunting Soccer Mom series (as Julie Kenner) is currently in development as a television show.

Her books have sold over three million copies and are published in over twenty languages.

In her previous career as an attorney, JK worked as a clerk on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and practiced primarily civil, entertainment and First Amendment litigation in Los Angeles and Irvine, California, as well as in Austin, Texas. She currently lives in Central Texas, with her husband, two daughters, and two rather spastic cats.

 

Connect with J. Kenner

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JKennerBooks/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/juliekenner/

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/j-kenner

Stay up to date with J. Kenner by joining her mailing list: http://juliekenner.com/contact/subscribe-to-the-julie-kenner-newsletter/

Website: www.jkenner.com