Release Day Blitz (Book Review, Teaser Video, Excerpt, Giveaway): The Sinner’s Bargian by Claire Contreras

Sinner's Bargain release

sinner's bargain
Title: The Sinner’s Bargain (Contracts & Deceptions #2)
Author: Claire Contreras
Genre: Erotic Suspense
Length: 256 pages
Rating: 4.5 stars

Synopsis
Being pulled in different directions, Amara must choose

what she wants to believe and whom she’ll trust.

Grace Review
After the first book, there were a lot of open questions:
Would Amara finally repair the debt owed to Phillip?
Who was threatening her safety?
Would she and Colin get another chance at love?

In this book, we get answers to those questions.  Eventually.  The mystery unravels with the center theme of trust.  Who can Amara trust?  When can Amara put her full trust in someone else?  And sadly, there is broken trust.

Similar to The Devil’s Contract, the author leaves us in the dark for a good part of the book, which made me want to read faster.  She gives the reader little bits of information, hints at who to trust and why.  Only to throw doubt on that trust moments later.

If you had issues with Amara’s sexual exploration with people other than Colin before, this book will be easier to handle.  But that doesn’t mean that Amara and Colin’s road back to each other is an easy one.  There are threats to their relationship at every turn.  But they fight those threats together.

Although Colin has a hare time getting over Amara’s activities with Méchant, he remains a presence and tries to maintain control over her.  Not giving others much chance to do the same.

The connection between Amara and Colin is hard to ignore.  The longing grows day by day to a point where they can’t control their urges.

“Move.”
He spanked her ass once, and then again when she stayed frozen in place.
“Yeah, like that.  Ride me baby.”

Although I liked their intimate moments, I didn’t like how Colin used jealousy to drive Amara’s actions.  And it pissed me off how he often seemed to put business partners before her – how he could even fathom doing business with her father after how he treated Amara, is beyond me.

“But my girl isn’t a puppet, Mara, she’s a motherfucking queen.”

As I mentioned, trust in this story is key.  And when Amara finally gives Colin all of her trust, things change dramatically between them.  That breadth I’d been holding thru a good part of the book, could slowly be released.

“Queens do what they have to do for the people they love.”

However, this author doesn’t give you much time to relax.  There are some sad and shocking twists, which toyed with my emotions.  Thanks Claire!  As trust is broken, it has tragic consequences.  And to avoid spoilers, that’s all I’ll say.

If you were mad with the cliffhanger at the end of book 1, you’ll be happy to know that this book gives you a HEA that provides resolution and happiness.

“More than the stars.”

This series has all the elements I love: an original plot, suspense, thigh-clenchingly hot scenes, and a passionate love story.  The mystery is a slowly unraveling one that will keep you guessing until the end.

– Grace

*An ARC was received from the author for an honest review.

Check out the amazing teaser video made by YaYa:

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Excerpt

“Holy shit,” she breathed when she looked at the four women standing in front of her. Courtney wasn’t kidding when she’d said Philip collected lookalikes. All of them looked like Amara. Not identical, but enough that a person who didn’t know her could confuse them or think they were sisters. They all had dark, straight hair that reached their elbows, a couple had layers like hers, and the others were cut the same length. Their bodies were all thin like Amara, although with slight variation in the hip area.
“You must be Amara,” one of them said, speaking up.
“I am,” she said, uneasily.
“Isn’t it against code to use real names?”
The girl laughed. “What am I supposed to call you? Jasmine?”
“Yes,” she responded slowly.
“Okay, Jasmine, I’m Jasmine.”
Amara’s brows furrowed. “For real?”
“All of our Méchant names are Jasmine for the night.”
“What?”
The girl shrugged. “That’s what they told us. We’re all wearing the same thing; we’re all standing the same way, and using the same make-up.”
“But how will… Okay,” Amara said, blinking rapidly. She reminded herself she had this one last thing to do before she was free.
They all dressed in threads of fabric, artfully shredded, tiny black shirts that left little to the imagination and similar skirts, barely covering the panties beneath. Before long, Vivienne appeared at the door, much to Amara’s surprise.
“It’s been a long time,” Vivienne said with a smile when she spotted Amara.
Amara nodded in response, still gaping at her. She noticed pairs of handcuffs that Vivienne held in her hands.
“Okay, girls, stand in a
single line so I can put these on you. Don’t look so scared, Ava, they come off after the auction,” she said, rolling her eyes. “I’m also going to put masks on you,” she added. “Just a final touch so you can look more…alike.”
As Vivienne fastened the handcuffs on each girl, she put a key on the side of their panties and gave them a level stare. “For after.” She continued to give her unwanted comments as she stood in front of each girl. Sometimes, “where did they find you?” others “your hips are too big.” Nobody responded to her ”they just let her talk, cuff
and slip the black, demure masks over their faces.
“Ready,” she chimed before walking out of the room. “Follow me!” she called over her shoulder.
The women followed Vivienne to a stage where they lined up in a row beside one another, their shaky arms rubbing against the other’s as they looked into the crowd. A few scattered women accompanied some of the men. They watched with equal attention and excitement. The look on their faces sickened Amara.
“This is crazy,” she heard Ava whisper beside her.
“It’ll be over soon,” Amara whispered back.
Her eyes scanned the crowd again. The lighting in the room
was dim, like everywhere else, and it gave everyone in the crowd a rosy glow.
Amara wondered where the man was—the one looking for her—and that’s when she spotted Colin sitting off to the left side, by himself with a drink in his hand. Shit. Amara cursed repeatedly. She tried to see if she could spot Sam or Philip, but couldn’t. She needed to tell somebody about him. If he decided to bid on her, if he could even bid on the right her, it would throw everything off.
Before she could do anything else, the auction started. Ava was
pushed up first. She stood in front of the line with her head tucked into her chest, just waiting, as Vivienne introduced her as “Number One.” So they would do it by numbers. Nothing more was said about Ava, before a woman stood up and placed her bid of five thousand dollars, only to be countered by the woman at her same table with a bid of twelve thousand. They both laughed, as if it was such a hilarious thing to be bidding on this poor girl’s body. They gave each
other a knowing look, which made Amara’s stomach turn. Ava knew what she was in for, though. The girls in Méchant were prepared to give their bodies away without hesitation.
Three more numbers went by before it was Amara’s turn: Number Five.
She stood, with head held down as the others had, until she heard Colin’s opening bid of fourteen thousand dollars. Her eyes snapped up to meet his. She wanted to warn him to stop. A man standing off to the other side of the room countered him. Twenty thousand. Colin raised it to thirty. Her hands sweated, shaking so hard she was forced to clamp them together in front of her body as her eyes searched the room for Philip, Vivienne…anybody who could help. The man raised his bid to forty and Colin countered with fifty. Amara waited on bated breath and sighed in relief when the man didn’t counter the offer. She should have been nervous knowing Philip would be furious if that was the guy they’d been waiting for, but a part of her was relieved. Vivienne said that standard procedure was for them to check who the winning bidders were before they left
with the girls —that’s how they would know if the man was there. Maybe if he bid on one of the others and was caught, Amara wouldn’t have to do much more.
The longer she counted the numerous ways this could go, the more
tied up she felt. The cuffs around her hands began to be weighty, and the mask on her face felt like it was suffocating her. Amara had to squash an overpowering need to get out, to run and never look back.

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(1) $25 Starbucks Gift Card, (1)$25 Amazon Gift Card
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If you haven’t read the beginning of Colin and Amara’s
story, grab The Devil’s Contract now!

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Title: THE DEVIL’S CONTRACT
Author: Claire Contreras
Age group: Adult
Genre: Dark Contemporary Romance
Cover Design: Najla Qamber
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About

Claire

Claire Contreras graduated with her BA in Psychology from Florida International University. She was born in the Dominican Republic and raised in Miami, Fl, where she currently resides with her husband, two boys, and two American Bulldogs.

Life is short, and it’s more bitter than sweet, so she tries to smile as often as her face allows. She enjoys stories with happy endings, because life is full of way too many unhappy ones.

Website | Facebook | Twitter

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New Release Blitz (Excerpt & Giveaway): Two Roads by Lili St. Germain

Two Roads release

Two Roads

Amazon: TBD
B & N: http://bit.ly/ZXM11S
iTunes:http://bit.ly/1vx45Nv
Goodreads:http://bit.ly/1vWrO7f
RELEASE DATE: September 30th, 2014

Synopsis

The sixth book in the #1 iBooks bestselling Gypsy Brothers series.

Juliette and Jase may be out of Dornan’s immediate reach, but as tensions rise, will they end up walking right into the enemy’s trap?

Can Juliette forgive Jase for his devastating betrayal, or will it destroy everything they’ve been fighting for?

Excerpt

He killed my father. I’m having his baby.

He killed my father. I’m having his baby.

Those two sentences are on repeat in my head, the agony of the rolling waves almost too much for me to bear.

And the agony of my nausea slams into me again with the violent rock of the waves that carry us to safer shores. I think. I hope.

But really, how safe am I? I’m suddenly questioning everything, stuck in a vortex of swirling paranoia and doubt. Is Jase on Dornan’s side? He killed my father. He didn’t even try to deny it.

I can’t believe it, I can’t accept it, and I just wish I could think straight for five fucking minutes. I wish I didn’t feel like this. I’ve left one prison, the one Dornan constructed for me, only to be trapped in one of my own making. The one in my mind that goes over and over and over again.

I’m curled as tight as I can get into a ball on a bed in the main cabin of the boat. We must be going pretty fast, or be in some crazy swell, because I swear if the boat tilted a little more, it’d capsize.

The door is closed. I made Elliot promise he wouldn’t let Jase come in here. I’m going to have to face him eventually, but I just can’t face him now. I don’t want to hear his excuses, if he even has any. He killed my father.

I’ve never been afraid of drowning before, but right now, I’m terrified. Drowning in this ship. Drowning in lies and in blood. Drowning in my own treacherous deceit. For so long, I’ve had only one goal – to destroy Dornan. I was too busy focusing on his suffering to notice or care about my own, and now, I feel so damned broken. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to feel normal again.

In fact, come to think of it, I don’t even know what normal is.

I jump as a warm hand touches my shoulder.

“Hey,” a low voice murmurs beside me.

I turn over to see Elliot lying beside me, his pose mirroring mine. I can see water lashing against the small round window that looks out to the cruel sea we travel within.

“You’re shaking,” Elliot says, frowning as he reaches out a hand to me. Without thinking, I shrink back, an automatic response after three months of Dornan’s psychotic hands being the only ones to reach for me. Elliot’s face crumples into something resembling sadness—despair—as he reaches out to me again, slower this time, and pushes my lank hair back from my face.

Am I even here? I’m not sure. This could all be a dream. An elaborate, drug-induced hallucination. The thought makes me reel. Am I out? Or am I still in the basement? Is Elliot in front of me, or is it Dornan?

I scramble away from Elliot, clambering off the bed and backing up to the far end of the tiny room. Behind me, waves pound violently into the thick glass porthole, the only thing separating us from the deadly currents beyond. The movement of the waves catches my attention and I turn, mesmerized, as I press a trembling palm up to the freezing cold glass.

Am I here? Am I alive?

A nudge in my stomach, nothing more than a flutter really, propels me back to sanity.

Yes. I am here. I am here, while Elliot hovers behind me, and Jase and Luis are somewhere beyond the door that keeps me safe in this room.

And I am carrying a baby inside me. A baby that should never have existed.

And I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a terrible thing.

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Gypsy Brothers Series by Lili Saint Germain

Series image
Seven Sons (Gypsy Brothers, Book One) FREE
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1t6zQIy
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/1uCENKj
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1wNBlxD
iTunes: http://bit.ly/Z9sA66

Six Brothers (Gypsy Brother, Book Two)
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1pQjAOq
B&N:http://bit.ly/1xikeYV
Itunes: http://bit.ly/1rbe5oO

Five Miles (Gypsy Brothers, Book Three)
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1oKwLu1
Amazon UK: TBD
B & N:http://bit.ly/1rbcAac
iTunes:  http://bit.ly/1qiTUt4

Four Score (Gypsy Brothers, Four)
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1o447oe
B & N:http://bit.ly/1pve7X1
iTunes:  http://bit.ly/1qB2zWi

Three Years (Gypsy Brothers, Book Five)
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/1rbbD1z
B & N: http://bit.ly/1ljdVzb
iTunes:  http://bit.ly/1rBWdHu

Two Roads (Gypsy Brothers, Book Six)
Amazon US: TBD
B & N: http://bit.ly/ZXM11S
iTunes:  http://bit.ly/1vx45Nv

One Love (Gypsy Brothers, Book Seven)
B & N; http://bit.ly/1utEZPg
iTunes: http://bit.ly/1rPgZFW

About

Lili

Lili writes dark romance, suspense and paranormal stories. Her serial novel, Seven Sons, was released in early 2014, with the following books in the series to be released in quick succession. Lili quit corporate life to focus on writing and so far is loving every minute of it. Her other loves in life include her gorgeous husband and beautiful daughter, good coffee, Tarantino movies and spending hours on Pinterest.

She loves to read almost as much as she loves to write.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

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Giveaway Two Roads

One Grand Prize winner will win a charm necklace
PLUS a Gypsy Brothers Swag Pack.
Two additional winners will win a
Gypsy Brothers Swag Pack along with
Gypsy Brothers “Revenge is Sweet” rubber bracelets.

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THANK YOU!

TRSOR

New Release (Excerpt and Giveaway): All Things Pretty by M. Leighton

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All Things

Synopsis
Pretending to be something they’re not, afraid to trust anyone completely, destined to tear each other apart– this is the story of unlikely love and unbearable consequences.

Sig Locke is a cop. He was raised by a cop and all his brothers are cops. He bleeds blue, believes in right and wrong, and sees in black and white, never in shades of gray.

But that was before he met Tommi.

Tommi, with her long legs and bright green eyes, she captured Sig’s interest from the moment he saw her. Even after he discovered who she was–the girlfriend of a drug dealer, the beauty behind a criminal–he still found her utterly irresistible. What Sig doesn’t know, however, is that she has a secret even a cop can’t uncover. 

Tommi Lawrence hasn’t had an easy life, and it only got more complicated the day she met Sig. She learned long ago that she can’t trust anyone. Her gut tells her that Sig is no exception, her heart tells her that he is. But that was before she found out his real identity.

Can love be forged in a fire of lies? Or will the truth destroy them both?

Excerpt
Her lips are still curved when she turns her attention back to me.  Something about the moment hits me like a punch to the gut.  I think for a second that I could stand here and stare at her, just enjoy her smile and her happiness for hours.  Days, maybe.  But I can’t.   We can’t. So, instead, I brush a clump of mud from the end of her nose. “Have fun?”

“I did. Thank you. This was so good for him.”

“And you.”

“And me,” she concedes.

“You can be the real you around me anytime.  I won’t tell a soul.”

“So you prefer this?”

“Oh, hell yeah!  I don’t need glamorous. Or proper.”

“I’m not proper.”

“You forget that I heard your…expressiveness that day on the side of the road.  And it didn’t consist of ‘darn’ or ‘golly gee’.  But I haven’t heard anything like that come out of your mouth since then.”

“Ladies aren’t supposed to talk that way, according to Lance.”

“I don’t want a lady. I want a woman.  One who knows her own mind. One who wears what she’s comfortable in, one who says what she’s thinking.”  I take a step closer. I can’t help myself. Her scent draws me in.  Even covered in mud, she smells like sexy sunshine.  “I want the woman who kisses like she’s on fire and makes me feel like I’m the only one who can put her out.”

“Sig,” she begins.

I break in to cut her off.  I know her objections.  And I know how much I don’t want to hear them.  “I’m just being honest.  I’m not even touching you.”

Her eyes are glued to mine, a damn near irresistible gravity pulling us together.  “It’s not like you can anyway.  I mean, we’re in public.  With my little brother.  What could you possibly touch?”

I reach down and smear my hand in mud.  With her eyes locked on mine, I reach between us and flatten my palm on her chest, right over her heart.  “This.  I’d touch this.”

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Win a signed copy of All Things Pretty, a Sig t-shirt and swag pack.

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About

Michelle pic

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author, M. Leighton, is a native of Ohio. She relocated to the warmer climates of the South, where she can be near the water all summer and miss the snow all winter. Possessed of an overactive imagination from early in her childhood, M. Leighton finally found an acceptable outlet for her fantastical visions: literary fiction. Having written over a dozen novels, these days M. Leighton enjoys letting her mind wander to more romantic settings with sexy Southern guys, much like the one she married and the ones you’ll find in her latest books. When her thoughts aren’t roaming in that direction, she’ll be riding horses, swimming in ponds and experiencing life on a ranch, all without leaving the cozy comfort of her office.

A note from M. Leighton: I love coffee and chocolate, even more so when they are combined. I’m convinced that one day they could be the basis for world peace. I also love the color red and am seriously considering dying my hair.

Twitter | Author Goodreads | Website | ALL THINGS PRETTYGoodreads | Facebook

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Blog Tour (Review, Excerpt & Giveaway): Working Girl by A.E. Woodward

Working Girl tour

Working Girl cover
Title: Working Girl
Author: A.E. Woodward
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 249 pages
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis
Life As I Know It:
Booze
Drugs
Gambling
Easy Women
Such was my life in fabulous Las Vegas. But what do you expect when you’re the daughter of a prostitute. This is not the life I want for myself, and I have a plan.

Life As I Want It:
Go to college.
Get my degree.
Get as far from Vegas as possible.

But life has other plans. Plans that include him. Life isn’t always sunshine and roses and even the best laid plans change.

This is my story. The story of a girl who thought she had it all figured out until life threw her a curve ball. My name is Presley and I refuse to be just another Working Girl.

Grace Review
Warning: If you read the synopsis, then you have an idea of the world this book explores.  It is dirty and sad, at times.  There is one scene involving her Mom that was very upsetting for me, but likely a common part of that world.  This book does not gloss over the harsh realities of prostitution.

Now, that I have that out of the way, on to the review . . .

This story begins with a common theme, the poor virgin and rich manwhore, but then it takes it to the extreme.  Presley, named after her Mom’s love of Elvis, was basically born and raised in a brothel. Despite being raised to follow in her Mom’s footsteps, she fights it tooth and nail.  And fights to get out of that seedy world.

She survives day to day, taking classes at a local college.  On just another one of her bad days, she meets Emerson, named after the poet, of course.

Although Presley fights Emerson’s advances, he is one persistent man.  He shows her there is a better world out there and like Chrissy, her BFF, he convinces her that she deserves that world.

Emerson is a guy you want to add to your BBF list.  While his attraction to Presley is obvious, he doesn’t push her physically and provides her with support on the darkest of days.

“. . . but maybe – just maybe – I actually see something in you. Something that makes me want to know you. Something that makes me think we can be better, together.”

“You don’t have to let your past define you, Presley. From the second I saw you, I knew you need my help. And call me a sucker, or an arrogant son of a bitch, but I can help you if you’ll let me.”

Although Presley has the comforts of school and a chance at love, how to escape the seedy world isn’t clear.  She has the safety of her Mom and Chrissy to consider, along with no skills and income base to support a life on her own.

Her nights are dark, enduring the sounds and activities that occur at the brothel.  Working as the “office manager”, she relies on Chrissy to make it thru each night.

Chrissy is the ultimate best friend.  She uses her own body to protect Presley, while being a supporter for her to have a better life.

“You’ve got a lot going for you right now and you need to seize the opportunity. Be irresponsible. Be twenty-one, for God’s sake. Make mistakes. Take risks. Do something. Because watching you let it all pass you by is seriously pissing me off.”

Chrissy’s personality was intriguing to me.  Although prostitution is a dirty thing, she generally seems to love sex and had an upbeat attitude, all things considered.  I would have loved to get her POV to see if her positive spin was all just an act in order to keep Presley from becoming more depressed.  But we are left in the dark on that.

The majority of this book was a 5 star read for me.  However, my rating changed after the twist.  Don’t get me wrong, I loved the twist, so crazy!  I was eager to see how it would all play out.  Unfortunately, the drama of the twist was resolved too quickly, in my opinion.  It was almost as if the author was rushing to finish the book.

I was also surprised that the author made no mention of Emerson’s friends and how they reacted to Presley.  I would have expected some drama as her secrets are revealed, but there wasn’t any. Maybe at that point, the author wanted to cut her heroine some slack. ???

“You haven’t broken me at all. You’ve put me back together.”

Overall, while there were some parts of this book that were hard to read, as thankfully I’ve never had direct exposure to that dark world, the author did a great job of bringing you into that world.  And you are drawn thru the story, hoping Presley finally escapes to get her HEA.  Which she does. It isn’t an easy or pretty escape, but there is hope for her in the end.

“Life is meant to be scary, Presley. But you’ve gotta take the chance every now and then. Lie down and accept its splendor.”

– Grace

*An ARC was received for an honest review.

WG teaser 2

WG teaser

Excerpt

“Chrissy!” I whine.
She laughs and lies down next to me. “Stop thinking, Pres. Live. Let him in. You deserve to have someone else on the inside. You have way too much beauty locked up in there to not share it. Whether or not you want to believe this, you have so much to offer someone if you would just take the chance and let someone else in. Trust me, I know what is behind those carefully constructed walls, and it’s amazing.”
If it were possible to look more like a goldfish I’d be stunned. Living this life has made Chrissy hard-faced, and although she is forever telling me she loves me, and that I’m worth more than I believed, I’ve never heard her speak with such conviction before. The problem with keeping yourself locked up tight and spending most of your time alone is that the thoughts and opinions you have about yourself fester. They fester and grow and seep into every aspect of your
being, until one day, you wonder how it is that you even managed to get one true friend. Even then, I managed to convince myself that had we not been born into the same life, that there’s no way Chrissy would have wasted her time on me.
She thinks so, but up until now I haven’t been so sure. We’re just so different.
She exudes confidence, whereas I shy away from life. She walks into a room and commands attention; I am more than happy to sneak in via the fire exit, just to make sure no eyes are on me.
Chrissy’s eyes shimmer with tears and I know that she not only means what she is saying, but that it means something to her that I believe her. This beautiful broken soul has believed in me for so long that I owe it to her, and to myself, to allow her words to take hold of me. I reach for her hand, unable to form words eloquent enough to tell her how much she has done for me, how much she has given me. I look into her eyes and I try, with everything I am, to convey what I
feel burning in my chest. I am enough.
A moment passes between us; a moment too special to mar with anything but silence. When Chrissy sniffs and shifts in her seat, I know she’s ready to move on. And I know just how.
“He’s asked me out for coffee tomorrow,” I say quietly. “What should I do?”
“Meet him. Meet him tomorrow, and every day after that.”
“But . . .” I start to argue. Getting involved with Emerson is dangerous for both of us. Someone is bound to get hurt.
Chrissy reaches out and softly places her hand over my mouth preventing me from talking anymore. With her free hand she snakes underneath my pillow and grabs my cell phone before handing it over to me. “Stop thinking, and just say yes.”

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About A. E. Woodward

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A.E. lives in Vacationland with her husband and two children. Between her real job and writing she finds little time to enjoy life’s finer things. However in the free time she does manage to steal, she enjoys spending time with friends and family, and reading. A.E. is the author of Kismet and A Series of Imperfections: Imperfectly Perfect, Imperfectly Real, and Imperfectly Bad. Working Girl is her fifth book.

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Blog Tour (Book Review & Interview): Deacon by Kristen Ashley

Deacon blog

Deacon cover

Title: Deacon (Unfinished Hero #4)
Author: Kristen Ashley
Genre: Erotic, Contemporary
Length: 216 pages
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis
Deacon has an ugly history, a history that broke him, leaving him a ghost of a man. Out of necessity, he left the normal world to descend into the criminal world and found he fit. So he stayed. Cold as ice and living off the grid, Deacon has no intention to connect, not with anyone.

Then he returns to some remote cabins in the Colorado Mountains and finds they have new owners. One of them is Cassidy Swallow, a young woman willing to work hard to live her quiet dream in a house by a river surrounded by aspen and pine.

Suddenly, Deacon finds he’s at war. Cassidy’s pull for him to connect is strong. He fights it, but he loses, always coming back for more. But when he does, he gives her nothing.

From the first time she sees him, Cassidy knows Deacon is dead inside. She knows he’s the kind of man who could destroy a woman. But one night when Deacon’s control slips, Cassidy takes a chance.

He might break her. He also might be her dream come true.

Grace Review
While this story has some dark elements, it is not a Dark Romance.

This is a story of a man trapped in the dark.  Unsure if he deserves to leave the dark and come into the light.

And this is a story about the woman that is finally able to bring him into that light.

The story between Deacon and Cassidy is a slow building one.  There is no insta-love or lust.  Well, maybe internally there is some lust, but it take a long time before either act on their developing feelings.

From Cassidy’s perspective, Deacon is a mystery and very hard to get thru to.  He doesn’t give her much indication he’s interested, other than repeatedly showing up at her Colorado Mountain cabins.

Side note: If you are a big KA fan, yes, it is the same cabins mentioned in The Gamble.  And Max fans, he does get a brief mention in this book, along with Nina and Woods.
Even their first introduction is a bit odd, as Deacon introduces himself as John Priest.  Cassidy is quick to suspect he isn’t telling the truth, but she doesn’t get his real first name for awhile.  And the last name?  Nope.  That information, like other details such as his birthday, remain a secret.
Deacon eyes
Over the span of several years, Cassidy is drawn more to Deacon with each of his visits to the cabins, despite his intimidating and withdrawn reactions around her.  When “his cabin” eleven is not available one night, the relationship turns a corner, from casual acquaintances, to something more.  And that relationship slowly builds, day by day.  We are exposed to a new side of Deacon, one that is protective, supportive, and willing to lend a hand, both financially and physically.  Qualities Cassidy’s former boyfriend, was sorely lacking.  But while Deacon offers Cassidy a new level of comfort, he still keeps any personal information private from her.

As the reader who is familiar with the Unfinished Hero series, we have an advantage over Cassidy.  We already know what Deacon does for a living, or have an idea as to what he does, which isn’t always on the right side of the law.  So I felt bad that Cassie had to wait so long to learn some of his story.

While Deacon only reveals some small truths about his past, he didn’t keep this information from Cassidy because he didn’t care about her.  He did so because he didn’t want to bring her into his dark.  And he wanted to protect her.

With the manner in which his personal story unfolds, KA leaves us guessing a lot about Deacon (even with what we know about his job).  What made him the way he is?  Is there hope for him to come out of the dark?

A picture proves to be a breaking point for the couple, and we finally learn about the cause of his pain.

I felt sorry for Cassidy during parts of this story.  You can sense her connection and love for Deacon, but he never fully gives her his trust.  Literally leaving her in the dark.  Is it strength that she is able to wait an unknown amount of time when Deacon goes off on a job, or is it a weakness?  Like a lot of other KA Alphas, Deacon doesn’t really communicate his feelings thru words, but actions.  I had to wonder, could you endure what Cassidy does?  Knowing Deacon might not be a “good guy”?  Knowing nothing about him?  How long would you wait?

. . . I knew down to my bones I couldn’t bear a life of longing for him, wondering how it could have been if he gave me what he was offering right at that moment.
The chance to get in.

Lucky for Cassidy, there are people like Raiden Miller to set Deacon straight.  He finally is able to confront his demons and come out of the dark.

Lucky for Deacon, Cassidy is waiting for him.

“And she resurrected me.”

Like the previous books in this series, there are a number of very erotic scenes between the couple.  I was very surprised at the level of trust and control Deacon gives Cassidy sexually.   So different from her previous Alphas.
Deacon teaser
“Love is trust, Cassie, you taught me that.”
The end of this book is very different from previous KA books.  Without giving anything away, it doesn’t fast forward into the future.  Instead, we are treated to a reunion of sorts, with all of the previous lead characters from this Unfinished Hero series, so I get my Creed and Sylvie fix.  Woohoo!  Also joining them are Marcus and Daisy Sloane, who if you are a Rock Chick fan, need no introduction.  What’s causing this grande reunion?  Just look at the book 5 title – SEBRING.  Oh yeah, you know shits about to go down. . . .but we have to wait.
– Grace
*An ARC was received from the author of an honest review.

Deacon

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Goodreads

Interview

In case you missed out Unfinished Hero Day, here is my interview with Kristen Ashley.

http://afterdarkbooklovers.com/2014/09/22/unfinished-hero-day-interview-with-kristen-ashley/

Click images below to purchase the previous books in this series:

Knight Creed cover Raid

Release Day Blitz (Reviews, Excerpt and Giveaway): The Invitation 1 & 2 by Roxy Sloane

Invitation Release day

Invitation
Title: The Invitation Prequel (Invitation 1)
Author: Roxy Sloane
Genre: Erotica
Length: 50 pages
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis
Hot, English businessman Ashton Pierce made a pact not to screw up his friendship with Justine ‘JJ’ Jenkins over a cheap one-night stand. Now, two years later, he’s going out of his mind with wanting her — but she’s still off-limits.

Now school is over, and his control is wearing thin. They’ve got one last night together, and he’s determined to make it an experience she’ll never forget.

The one girl he swore off is going to have the night of her life. And with a sexy game of dare on the table, it won’t take long.

Michelle's Review
Well if by reading the synopsis doesn’t get your panties wet, I don’t know what will.

Hot damn this book was hot! While reading this delicious book (while o my bus ride going home), I kept hearing Nelly’s song “It’s getting hot in here.” I thought I was going to combust that’s for sure. But before I started reading the book, Yaya texts both me and Grace and states “This is fucking HOT. Ash and JJ have just become my favorite couple. Holy goodness. My ovaries are dead.” Boy was Yaya not lying! I may or may not have had mini orgasms during my bus ride home. I have the right to remain silent lol.

I will also agree with Yaya that Ash and JJ has also become my favorite HOT couple. If you have read In The Seduction (if you haven’t do yourself a favor a read all four novellas), remember how Keeley was really mousy and shy at first and you wanted tosmack her? JJ (Justine) is the total opposite. She is young, hot and she owns it. Ash is your hot Brit studying for his MBA and is a total freak in the sheets. These two has had a “friends” only relationship with no benefits. Well their last day of school is about to change.

The flirtation and the dares these two have will lead up to one ovary explosive night. Hot damn, just typing about it is getting me all riled up. Let me just say this, when reading The Invitation, please do it in the privacy of your own home with your favorite “toy” and not riding on a bus and practically panting while other riders are looking at your funny. You were warned.

Invitation teaser

I cannot wait to read Book 2 and see how this explosive relationship continues.

– Michelle
* Teasers made by YaYa

Amazon

Additional purchase links:
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1tZ6ChR
B&N: http://bit.ly/1vgK6zl
Kobo:  http://bit.ly/1r9kGFr
Smashwords: http://bit.ly/1r9kVjK
iTunes: http://bit.ly/1DxnkZy

Goodreads

Invitation 2
Title: The Invitation 2 (Invitation 2)
Author: Roxy Sloane
Genre: Erotica
Length: 158 pages
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis
Welcome to your wildest fantasy…

The invitation arrives out of nowhere. No name. No address. Just one simple challenge.

‘Play with me.’

The games are intoxicating, each one more thrilling than the last. And pleasure is the ultimate prize.

He knows my secrets. He sees my darkest desires. He can drive me to ecstasy — and I don’t even know his name.

This is your invitation. Now it’s your turn to decide.

Are you ready?

Michelle's Review

Roxy, Roxy, Roxy, I think the shorties will agree with me that our ovaries will never be the same.  Thankfully, I took my own advice from my previous review, and read this book in the privacy of my own home.  All I will say is that I texted Yaya asking her when is book 3 coming out.

Text

Ok book whores, book 2 starts three years after Justine and Ash hooked up.  Justine has become an associate with a fast track to partnership especially if she wins this big intellectual property lawsuit.  Off to New York Justine goes.  Guess who makes an appearance none other than Keely from The Seduction Series.  They both happen to be BFFs and Keely offers Justine her corporate apartment in New York.

Justine thinks about her last night with Ash.  She’s really hurt that in the three years she’s been an attorney, he has not once picked up the phone.

Upon Justine’s arrival to New York, a mysterious package and invitation awaits her.  If you read book 1, Justine loves a challenge. All thoughts of said package is put aside.  Justine needs to bring her A game to meeting with the attorneys trying to sue her client.  Of course, as a reader, I cannot wait to find out who the one sending Justine these invitations and packages.

Well, well, well as Justine is trying to get a handle on all the testosterone filled lawyers trying to take her client down, enters Mr. Ashton Pierce himself.  He is not the same Ash from 3 years ago.  He is a little cold.  JJ (as he likes to call her) will have none of that.  If Ash wants a fight, he’s going to get one all right.

Again, these mysterious invitations and packages keep arriving which intrigues Justine even more. I’m not even going to tell you what happens with said packages, you know why, YOU NEED TO READ THE FUCKING BOOK! LOL.

I will say this, the things and events that take place during these “invitations” are panty dropping worthy and you will be giving your significant other some really good loving afterwards. (Men really should start reading smut if they want to get some from their women, just saying).

Invitation 2 teaser

Yeah, freaking Roxy and her cliffhangers, us shorties need book 3 like yesterday lady!  Between the texts and tweets, I don’t know how we will survive waiting for book 3.  As much as I loved book 1, I really ADORED book 2, holy shit it was hot, hot hot!

– Michelle
*Teaser made by YaYa
*An ARC was received from the author for an honest review.

Amazon

Additional purchase links
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1rux6Hp
B&N: http://bit.ly/1uGHoCu
Kobo:http://bit.ly/1psbQw4
Smashwords: http://bit.ly/1pd0Bs5
iTunes:  http://bit.ly/1spH2Uu

Goodreads

 

Excerpt
The server arrives with a fresh drink on her tray.

“I didn’t order this,” I say, confused.

“Courtesy of the gentleman at the bar.” She deposits it in front of me. “Oh, and he said to give you this.”

It’s another black gift-box.

My heart stops.

“Who is he?” I demand, twisting around. “Can you point him out to me, please?”

She looks over at the bar. “He’s gone now, sorry.”

Damn.

The waitress leaves, and I turn my attention back to the box. How is this possible? Nobody knows I’m here tonight. But it’s the same gold ribbon. The same cream card. My name in gold ink.

The box is smaller this time. But it’s definitely from the same person.

I slide the invitation out from under the ribbon and open it.

Play with me.

Intriguing.

I glance around, my skin prickling with awareness. I’m wearing the lingerie he sent, and suddenly, it feels so intimate. My calves slide against each other in the silk stockings, the garters pressing into my thighs. My nipples stiffen against the lacy bra.

What is he planning next?

I take a deep breath and slowly untie the ribbon. Inside, I find a silver butterfly nestled in a cocoon of black tissue paper.

I pause. What is this?

I take the butterfly out of the box. It’s made of smooth, matte silicone and fits in the palm of my hand. The body of the butterfly is ribbed, and adjustable satin straps hook to each corner of the wings.

Suddenly, the butterfly buzzes in my hand.

My mouth falls open.

Holy shit. It’s a vibrator.

I can’t stop a giggle of surprise slipping from my lips. The couple at the next booth look over, so I quickly move the box out of sight below my table.

I gaze at the toy, my excitement rising. I’ve seen these on the website where I shop for all my sexy accessories, but I’ve never used one before. You strap it around your thighs so the butterfly nestles against your clit. There’s either an on/off switch or a remote that controls the vibrations. But I don’t see a switch.

I check the box again. No remote control.

Realization crashes through me. The mystery man must have it. That means he’s close. He’s here.

My pulse races as I scan the room. He has to be watching me. But everyone seems to be paying attention to their own dining companions. No one cares that I’m over here at the corner table with a vibrator in my hands.

I glance down again. The butterfly looks so cute nestling in the tissue paper, and the contrast between its innocent appearance and illicit purpose gives me a thrill. Nobody would know if I put it on.

Nobody except the man holding the controls, hidden somewhere out of sight.

“Excuse me.” A different server arrives at my table. I slam the box shut with a yelp.

“This is for you,” he says, looking bored. He holds out a new envelope, and I take it, my cheeks flushing. Before I can ask anything else, he walks away.

I take a deep breath, and unfold the card. There’s only one word on the paper.

Now.

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About
Romance junkie, mom, and legal eagle. I have a dirty mind and I’m not afraid to use it.
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Book Enthusiast

 

Book Review: Extremely Famous by Heather Leigh

EF
Title: Extremely Famous (Famous series #3)
Author: Heather Leigh
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 338 pages
Rating: 4.5 stars

Synopsis
Sydney Tannen has been living in denial for the last 12 years. Now that she’s making a life with Drew Forrester, hiding from her past is no longer an option.

An emotional reunion with her father brings Sydney a peaceful feeling that she hasn’t experienced in a long time. Her contentment vanishes quickly with a single phone call. When Sydney finds out that Drew is keeping something huge from her, she throws herself into work to avoid facing the problem.

The stress of Drew’s secret, combined with 12 years of carefully constructed denial, comes crashing down spectacularly and Sydney ends up in a hopeless place, alone and afraid. Can she accept her past and face the future? Or is it easier to remain in the dark?

Michelle's Review
Again, I will start off my review like I did for my review for book 2, if you haven’t read book 1 or 2, do not pass go and do not collect $200. You will be so lost if you do not read those 2 books first. Ok enough of bullying you all lol.

Well after the most romantic proposal left off in book 2, the story moves on forward. Sydney is finally getting to see her father again after 12 years of no contact. If you have read book 2, you already know why her parents decided no communication with her very famous father, Reid Tannen was for her best interest. I was so happy to finally to see the reunion with her father happen. Especially more so now that she is with Drew. When Sydney finally sees her dad, it’s as if the 12 years apart didn’t happen. Sydney had her daddy back, and her dad has his “heartbreaker”.

Sydney and Drew are joyfully blessed being engaged, but of course, he wants to shout it through the rooftop. Sydney is still trying to being back in the public eye with such a public figure and “Sexiest Man Alive”, she just wants to savor her engagement without the prying eyes of the world upon their relationship.

Drama continues to surround Sydney and Drew in the likes of Kiera Radcliffe. Boy I hated her in book 1, 2 and now 3. This bitch knows no bounds. Oh and the lovely Brit, Adam Reynolds. I had my little issues with Adam, I wasn’t sure what his true agenda was towards Sydney. He and Drew have a volatile past and I wanted to know exactly why they were so antagonistic towards each other. You too will finally find out why they hate each other so much. Of course, Adams does not make things easy by acquiring a $29 million dollar penthouse that he wants Sydney to redesign. Yep, let the fireworks begin people.

The ups and downs between Sydney and Drew’s relationship is off the scale. They are both so stubborn. I do love how Sydney is so much better with dealing being in the public eye, and being more assertive, but she really was trying my patience for being so petulant at times. Oh but Drew he’s so damn alpha and bossy. I understand him trying to protect Sydney, he still feels so guilty from the attack and the miscarriage during his movie premiere. I get it, but come on dude, open communication with your woman damn it!

Through it all her BFF Leah (whom I loved and is dating a famous actor herself, Ryder Brancroft), has always been her rock and voice of reason. I wished Sydney would have listened to Leah, maybe some of the unnecessary drama wouldn’t have happened.

Through it all, Sydney and Drew finally get their HEA. During his speech during his Oscar acceptance was very sweet and beautiful.

Here are some of my favorite Drew quotes, enjoy:

Bossy Drew – “You like that, don’t you? Getting fucked by me, held down while I take what I want?”

Real Alpha Drew – “I need to make sure you’re ready for me because I’m not going to be gentle.”

I really enjoyed reading Heather’s Famous Series. Thanks Yaya for introducing me to her writing. This book in particular was better paced. I cannot wait to read more of Heather’s stuff in the future. I’m going to miss Sydney and Drew.

– Michelle

*An Arc was provided by the author for an honest review.

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Book Review & Interview: Fear of Heights by Mara White

Fear of Heights
Title: Fear of Heights (Heightsbound #2)
Author: Mara White
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 276 pages
Rating: 4.5 stars (Michelle) 4 stars (YaYa)

Synopsis
What are you willing to sacrifice for love?

Your family? Your freedom? What about your life?

She’s a wealthy, forty-three-year-old Upper East Sider with a PhD – He’s a twenty-three-year-old Dominican drug dealer from Washington Heights.

Kate Champion always did exactly what was expected of her. She was the perfect wife, the perfect mother – until the day she met Jaylee Inoa.

Their journey travels a path riddled with danger, deceit, scandal and loss – where nothing is at it seems. Yet Kate and Jaylee’s passion for one another remains nearly unstoppable.

Will this daring pair of lovers from two different worlds triumph over circumstance? Can they deny the past in their quest to be together? Or is fear the ultimate navigator – a force more powerful than love?

MY review
Michelle: So Mara White I applaud you loudly. This book my was my favorite. Everything comes full circle here, that’s for sure.

Yaya: I applaud her no matter what. I don’t agree on this one being my favorite though. I felt more connected with book 1.

Fear teaser 2

Michelle: Kate, of course, is back to doing stupid shit like in the first book. At one point, I was yelling at the top of head to this woman, get a grip damn it.

I wasn’t sure how I felt with the newcomer “Ideal” pronounced “Ee-day-al”. I was like, oh no, not again with another young thug, what is up with Kate. When you continue reading, you will see the true meaning of friendship. Good looking out Ideal.

Yaya: You can say that again about Kate doing stupid shit. I can’t believe her over abundance of poor choices. Like, how old are you again? Is there a working brain inside that big ass head of yours?

I can say that I understood where she was coming from in the first book. Needy, lonely wife, seeking attention. Got raptured up in the claws of young Jaylee and his swag. Not this time. I lost count on how many times I was yelling at her.

Kate, one mistake, fine, but how many more do you need to keep making to please everyone else? The new guy Ideal, spiced things up a bit and that’s all I’m saying.

Michelle: Robert, oh Robert, Robert, Robert. “Oh what a tangle web we weave when first we practice to deceive.” (Sir Walter Scott). Yes, this quote is very apropos on how I am feeling about Robert. If you read my review for Heights of Desire, wherein I stated I was on the fence regarding him, well that fence is down. All I will say is, I had a feeling from the first book that he was somewhat shady, but wasn’t sure and I will leave it at that.

Yaya: Some might say he’s a Saint. Come on how many times is he going to forgive Kate? Controlling quite a bit but he really didn’t cause any harm. He was fighting for what was his. His wife. His family. Maybe he wasn’t doing it in a kindly manner. He must be really good at his job. Lol.

Michelle: Jaylee – wow is all I can say. My heart broke for him yet when certain truths come out, I really wanted to hate him. Yet, my heart still broke for him.

Yaya: Jaylee from book 1 I easily fell for. Jaylee in book 2 spent too much time in jail. Then what he did to Kate, not forgivable. I did feel some pitty for him but he was out of control. I also felt like Kate swept him under the rug by not caring for his feelings or wishes while he was in jail. He only told you to stay away. Fine don’t listen Kate.

Michelle: Also in my review was I Team Robert, Team Jaylee or Team No One. Well actually, believe it or not, Team Kate. Although she still pissed me off, at the end of the book, you wanted some time of redemption for her.

Yaya: My fellow reviewer 👆👆👆has lost her marbles. I’ll stick to Team No One. Everyone played a part at pissing me off at one point or another. Except Sara. All she wanted to do was smoke some weed. LMAO. She cracked me up. Then there’s Ideal. He was the only one with some type of a brain.

Michelle: There were no winners here. The loser of it all was love. And with that ladies (and gentlemen if you read our blog), I will leave it at that.

Yaya: Now she’s getting all poetic on me over here and ending it just like the Epilogue. Which by the way was a pretty slick move. “Eyes like Gold.”

Michelle: Mara White, wow, I cannot wait to meet you one day at a book signing. You really went there and then some. You had me at moments of despair and anger.

You made my heart race with both books (more so in book 2). You go girl! I cannot wait to read more of your stuff.

Yaya: Although Michelle and I don’t agree in our rating and how she feels towards the end about Kate, we can both agree that we love Mara’s writing and will continue to follow her future work. My advice to the author to translate the Spanish content more for the non-Spanish speaking readers. It is very clear where this takes place and the mention of the Dominican culture. Me as being Puerto Rican I take into consideration that the Spanish used in the book may not be the same as we use in our culture. My rating towards the book was obviously not toward any of the characters but towards the writing of the story. I will be clearly discussing further matter with the author herself. Laters💋

Fear teaser

– Michelle and YaYa
*Teasers made by YaYa

*An ARC was provided by the author for an honest review.

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Goodreads

Interview

What would you like your new readers to know about your series before they begin? What do they need to know?
The Heightsbound Series are not standalone novels so Heights of Desire has to be read before embarking on Fear of Heights. HOD is on sale for $0.99 for another week so readers don’t have to break their budget. The story is a gritty, urban portrait of love in the twenty-first century. It’s a story of forbidden love that challenges accepted norms of class, culture, race, gender and age.

What was the thought process in creating the characters in Heights ofDesire. i.e. Kate , Robert and Jaylee?
I didn’t really approach Robert and Jaylee with much of a process they just developed as I wrote the story.  With Kate, there was more intent. I had been reading so much in the genre and I’d become tired of the Billionaire alpha male character. So I took a subversive approach when I created Kate and I imbued her with the typical alpha male advantages just to see if it would work. I thought what if it was the heroine that had the upper hand? What if she were the wealthy one, the more experienced one, the one with the sexual demands. What if he was the one who had everything to gain and she was already completely established and he had nothing to offer her? Would that still be appealing to a female reader – would she be able to embrace a women in the dominant role? (The verdict is still out on that one!) In Fear of Heights I took it one step further and took the womanizer attribute that so many alphas have and gave that to Kate. In Fear of Heights, Kate uses sex as an escape and an emotional release.

I am sure many have asked you this before, but why was Kate so frustrating? Was it because of the attention she was getting from Jaylee or needed? Was it because of Robert? We need some help understanding this woman.
I believe Kate is frustrating because she is passive. She spends a lot of time wavering between doing what she wants and doing what Robert (and society at large) expect of her. I think most of us just want her to chose, get it done and move forward, but then we wouldn’t have a story. It’s like the horror movie intro where: The woman is home alone- she hears a noise in the basement-she grabs a kitchen knife- proceeds to walk down basement stairs even though the light is burnt out. While we all sit on the edge of our seats and scream “NO!” We don’t want her to do it but she has to do it so that we can watch and be horrified.

In Heights of Desire, Robert was just a little to easygoing on Kate, especially after finding out about Kate’s affair, was that your intention? What’s making him change?
Well, people react to infidelity in a million different ways and we can’t say that any of them are right or any of them are wrong. Statistics say that 75% of couples deal with infidelity at some point in their relationship, so just imagine how many couples experience it and move past it. In Heights of Desire, Robert establishes himself as someone who wants to win no matter what the cost. So, Robert fighting for Kate is much more about keeping up appearances and about winning the game—not so much about having a healthy, loving relationship with his wife.

In Fear of Heights, we get to meet Ideal. Not going to lie, I was real apprehensive about him in the beginning. The character easily grows on you. He plays a major part in the lives of both Kate and her sister, Emily. Why Ideal? Why did you create him?
Ideal created himself. He was really a force of nature to me. I always intended on bringing him back for one scene, but after I wrote it, he just wouldn’t go away. Every time I sat down to write he kept showing up and inserting himself in the story. I figured I’d better listen to him, because, obviously, he knows better than me. So I let him guide me and I agreed to let him have a big part of the story.

Book 2 had a nice mind fuck of an epilogue. Many would agree. So the question is, will we get more? A little something? Or were those your intentions?
I didn’t mean for it to be a mind fuck! I meant for it to provide a bit of closure. I left the story open because that’s what I like personally, as a reader. HEA endings always start to make me feel like someone is wrapping a giant pink present bow around my neck, pulling it tight and suffocating me to death. Especially if there are bended knee proposals, wedding bells and rice throwing, goo-gawing babies and rocking chair couples holding hands and growing grey together. I like to breathe a little and set my characters free. If the author has created a strong enough character the reader can see for herself what they would or wouldn’t do. So that’s my intention. It doesn’t mean there will be another Heightsbound book.

I really enjoyed Janine and Oscar. Kinda scary for a moment there with Kate’s situation. Would you consider writing their story in the future?
No. I love Janinie and I like her and Oscar together but I write erotica to explore the taboo and to me there is nothing taboo about Janinie and Oscar being together. To me that equals (kind of boring) and I have no interest in writing it. The novel I’m writing now, The Delivery, is about a 25 year-old social worker who falls in love with an 18 year-old juvenile delinquent in her charge. Now that’s taboo and something I’m excited to write about!

Do you listen to the music in your book?
Yes! (And even if I didn’t want to I would hear it all over my neighborhood!)

Lightning Round
What are you currently reading?
The Tied Man by Tabitha McGowan. So good!

Who is your favorite author?
(This is a miserable question to answer YaYa and you know it!!! Akin to asking who is your favorite child.) If I can only choose one I’d have to pick Louise Erdrich, because I’ve read her throughout my whole life and she’s definitely influenced my writing heavily.

Favorite romance novel?
Sab by Gertrudis Gomez de Avellaneda
So savage and heartbreaking and for the record- the two lovers never even touch each other because it’s that taboo for them to be together. (Did this book influence The Heightsbound Series? YES!!)

Favorite Batman actor?
I don’t know. Christian Bale? My favorite batman writer is Scott Snyder!

The Vampire Diaries or True Blood?
Unfortunately I’ve never seen either one of these shows. I know of them via subway and bus advertisements though. I don’t have a TV. I live in the dark ages.

Biggest vice?
Is it Miami Vice?
Or Vice Squad?
Oh, maybe Vice magazine?
Just kidding!!
Coffee, chocolate, tattoos and romance novels (in that order)

Pepsi or Coca Cola?
Coffee

About

I’m a reader, a writer, and a lover of all things romantic. I’m also a coffee, hot sauce, ink, telenovela and Bikram Yoga enthusiast. I live in New York City with my husband and two children, and I spend a lot of time on the playground.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/heightsbound
Twitter: https://twitter.com/authormarawhite
Author Website: marawhite.com
Author GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7372906.Mara_White

Book Review: Heights of Desire by Mara White

Heights
Title: Heights of Desire (Heightsbound #1)
Author: Mara White
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 280 pages
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis
A woman who has everything meets a man who can offer her nothing but trouble. They bring each other to a height of desire neither thought possible, but is it enough to overcome the differences that tear them apart?
Kate Champion, a forty-two-year-old, married mother of two, leads an enviable upper class life of luxury. Her comfortable path takes an unexpected detour after a chance encounter at a neighborhood playground.
Jaylee Inoa is a twenty-two-year-old, second generation New York Dominican with close ties to the Heights and the gangs that run them.
Her life of privilege is no match for the code of the streets he navigates with ease. When a crime of the heart leads to a crime in the flesh, how far will she go to redeem him? Can she risk all in her life that is golden for the love of her golden-eyed man?

Michelle's Review
I will be totally honest, I don’t even know how to start processing what I have read to write this review. Talk about a clusterfuck of events and then some.

42-year-old Kate Champion, mother of two beautiful girls, married to Robert. Living the charmed life in Washington Heights. She also very educated, still trying to finish up her Ph.D. Ok so you would think like me, as reader, ok what’s wrong then, right? She comes from money, has a “devoted” husband, etc., why the mid-life crisis? Yes, I said it, mid-life crisis to the extreme. Enter Jaylee Iona, 22-year-old punk, thug, whatever catch phrase you want to add, comes into her life. He gives her the attention that somehow her husband (although, not a bad guy at first) does not show her. This has total fucking drama written all over it. Your typical love triangle to the 10th degree.

Kate is so taken with Jaylee from the very start, especially when she turns to see him for the first time after his comment “Nice tat!”, she looks upon his caramel eyes and is truly in lust at first sight by him. That is how best I can describe the situation because this woman was totally enamored with this kid. Yet, when they have their first sexual encounter, he was a real asshole.

Of course, the cheating has consequences, and when her husband finds out, it’s not pretty.

“I didn’t change the rules, Kate, you did. Remember that.” – Robert.

I honestly cannot say how I feel about Robert. There were moments where I felt really bad for him and yet there were times I wanted to punch him in the face. I feel he’s trying to save his marriage, but the thing is had he paid more attention to Kate, we wouldn’t be reading this book, right? I am really on the fence regarding Robert.

As for Kate, I really want to bitch slap her in the worst way. Look we all have read books of older man seeking out younger woman. Hell I love the ones I have read about teacher/student romances and loved them and fought for them to have a HEA. With Kate, I just don’t know if she even deserves Robert and/or Jaylee. I detest female leads like her in a book. I’ll read them, but hate them all the same. Here is why. If she felt that she wasn’t getting the attention she so deserved from her husband, why not just tell him? I get the attraction she has with Jaylee. He’s young, Alpha/Dominant, sexy, and fine. Realistically though, what can he really offer her besides a good old fashion, throw your hands in the air, wrap your legs around his waist, scratch his back … pounding?

Heights teaser

My heart really goes out for Jaylee too. He is a product of his environment (without saying too much, you will get my reference). Am I Team Jaylee? I really can’t answer that right now because he is in a lot of trouble. I guess when I get to the second book (oh yeah this book has a major cliffhanger) to really know if I am Team Jaylee or Team Robert or Team No One. His love for Kate is undeniable as is her love for him. Here’s an interesting quote from Kate:

“Before Jaylee, I was always under the impression that people cheated on their spouses because they were seeking something outside of marriage that was missing. I’m not sure if anything was lacking in my marriage to Robert. I wasn’t looking; Jaylee just happened.”

Heights teaser 2

I haven’t read a book like this before. It’s setting is so NYC. I am a product of Brooklyn, via Williamsburg so I get all the references in the book. Also the landmarks and places in Washington Heights that the author mentions, I have seen and/or heard. This book has a nice urban feel to it. My only suggestion to the author (and maybe she did this already) that for second book, whenever quoting in Spanish she may want to translate into English. I know what I she was saying, but a non-reading Spanish person may not. What I found really funny was how Jaylee describes his name.

“Jayle”, he whispers right into my ear. “Like the comet?” I ask. “No. Like J-A-Y-L-E-E. It’s a Dominican thing, my mom made it up.”

This is true very true in the Hispanic culture. They make up names lol.

Overall, I would totally recommend this book, just don’t have any sharp objects around you when you do read it because you may want to stab someone, just saying lol. I also liked the author’s style of writing. Although there were times where I would have wanted her to speed it up, but the book flowed very well. I am looking forward to reading the second book, which my girl Yaya will be reading and reviewing for the blog. So sit back relax and enjoy the drama, because there’s lots of it here with this book.

– Michelle
*Teasers made by YaYa

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Book Review: Absolutely Famous by Heather Leigh

Absolutely Famous
Title: Absolutely Famous (Famous series #2)
Author: Heather Leigh
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 338 pages
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis
***Warning, contains language and situations for mature readers. Appropriate for adults age 18+***
When 24 year-old Sydney Allen fell for the sexy Drew Forrester, it threw her life into chaos.
The daughter of Hollywood royalty, Sydney had been hiding her identity from the world since her parents’ tumultuous and very public divorce when she was 12.
Dating Drew forced her back into the spotlight to face some of her old demons. Now, she has to relearn how to live with the fame that she ran from for so long. Can her relationship with Drew survive the scrutiny?
When a media scandal that spans three countries and two continents threatens to destroy them and the people they love most, Sydney needs to decide if she’s strong enough to weather the storm that comes with being famous.
*Absolutely Famous is second in the Famous Series. You must read Relatively Famous before reading this book*

Michelle's Review
Before reading this review, if you haven’t read book 1, do not pass go, do not collect $200. Go purchase book 1 (chessy grin).

So book 2 leaves off where book 1 ends. Sydney finds out that Drew is none other than famous actor and Sexiest Man Alive Andrew Forrester. But to Sydney, he is just Drew, the man she fell in love with before she actually knew who or what he did for a living. They are in Vancouver, Canada where Drew is filming his next film. After the drama that unfolded in book 1, Drew wants Sydney as close to him as possible.

As you already know, in book 1, Sydney hated all things about her famous parents and being in the public eye, yet she is committed to her relationship with Drew and will learn to live with the scrutiny of being in the public eye again. Of course, there will always be drama regardless. As much as Drew tries to protect Sydney, there is always something (or rather someone, yeah bitch Kiera, I’m talking about you) who will try to sabotage Sydney and Drew’s relationship.

Sydney gets another opportunity to have input on another club, but it’s in England. She figures she and Drew need some time apart from each other and the wandering tabloids. So off to England Sydney goes. I loved how in this book Sydney had “grown up” a lot. She was so terrified even of her own shadow in book 1, she really put her big girl panties on.

The new project manager for the club though has the hots for Sydney. Olivia Clarke at first comes off very standoffish towards Sydney. Later, he sees that Sydney is not your typical “pampered princess because mommy and daddy are famous” and he really takes a liking to her (I mean big time). Sydney’s heart only belongs to Drew.

Drama continues to follow Sydney in England. Lots of life situations that somehow the tabloids get a hold of and for the life of her, Sydney cannot understand how they know so much intimate details. I will leave it at that because you have to read what sought of fuck up things people will do to invade a celebrity’s privacy. (I am guessing this is true in real life for celebrities).

I loved reading the journey Sydney and Drew are taking together as a couple. I liked how fast paced this book was from the first book. I did not want to put this book down at all. I really enjoy Heather’s style of writing that’s for sure. I cannot wait to dive into book 3 and see the continuation of Sydney and Drew’s love story.

I will leave you with some of my favorite quotes from Drew:

This quote comes when Drew finally becomes intimate again with Sydney in Canada after her attack. “God baby, I’ve missed so much. I need to know you’re still mine.” I love vulnerable Drew.

Then you get swoon-worthy, romantic, panty dropping Drew: “You’re not getting fucked, Sydney, I’m making love to you.”

And my all time favorite, Alpha Drew: I’m not done with you yet, you wanted to get fucked hard.”

– Michelle

*An ARC was provided by the author for an honest review.

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