After Dark’s Darkness Poll Winners

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And the winners of our first Darkness Poll are . . .

Favorite dark romance author?
WINNER: Pepper Winters

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Favorite dark book (standalone)?
WINNER: Raw by Belle Aurora

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Favorite dark series?
WINNER: King by T.M. Fraizer

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Favorite paranormal series?
WINNER: Black Dagger Brotherhood by J.R. Ward

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Favorite paranormal author?
WINNER: J.R. Ward

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Favorite Black Dagger Brotherhood Vamp?
WINNER: Zsadist

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Favorite male vampire in a TV series or movie?
WINNER: Eric Northman – True Blood

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Congrats to all of the winners!!!

Month of Darkness: Our Favorite Dark Reads

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What constitutes a dark read?  Many dark romances feature human trafficing.  Others include the use of torture and graphic violence.  Why are they popular?  I think it can almost be explained as a twist on a taboo, something we shouldn’t like but do.  As a reader, it takes you out of your comfort zone and challenges you to see a different side to the story.  Those authors who do this genre well, take the reader on a dark journey, they entertain you with their wicked minds, and drive your anxiety through the roof.  In the end, you’ll look back and realize their brillance.

It’s is impossible to list every dark read, but below is a list of our favorites.  So if you are looking for something to get your blood pumping, look no further (click on the image to purchase) . . .

CJ Roberts

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Pepper Winters

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T.M. Fraizer

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Pam Godwin

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Ker Dukey

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Ker Dukey and D.H. Sidebottom

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Lili St. Germain

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Arden Aoide

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Anna Zaires

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Aleatha Romig

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J.A. Redmerski

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Nashoda Rose

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Madeline Sheehan

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E.K. Blair

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M. Stratton

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Karina Halle (we loved the Artists Trilogy, but feel that is more of romantic suspense than dark like this series, so that’s why it is not listed)

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Great Stand-Alones

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*We know there is another book in this series, but since it hasn’t been released yet, we are considering this a stand-alone.

Sooo, what did we miss?  What are your favorite dark reads? Let us know.

Book Review: Baking and Babies by Tara Sivec

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Title: Baking and Babies (Chocoholics #3)
Author: Tara Sivec
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Length: 226 pages
Rating: 4.25 stars

Synopsis

“I’m pregnant.”

Molly Gilmore had a good life before she uttered those two stupid words. While preparing to graduate from culinary school and building up the courage to make a move on her hot, sugar-cookie-smelling pastry instructor Marco, she can’t wait to finally have the GREAT life she’s always dreamed about, instead of just the good one she’s been living.

Always known as the quiet ninja, she fully intends to stay hidden in the shadows with her nut-job family, so they have no chance to embarrass her around the man she’s crushed on for two years. Unfortunately, her family has other plans. When they yank her straight out of her comfort zone, she finds herself starring in the craziest train wreck she’s ever witnessed.

Molly ultimately gets a more exciting life that doesn’t revolve around school, but she’s pretty sure the man of her dreams won’t be sticking around long after her family gets ahold of him. There aren’t too many guys who can handle smelling like pee, having the whole world know how he masturbates, and being forced to eat an entire bag of dicks.

Join the Chocolate Lovers and Chocoholics gang for one final story about love, baked goods, making poor life choices, and remembering how important family is—even if they drive you insane.

Mostly because it’s illegal to kill them.

Grace Review
Several years ago, I picked up Seduction & Snacks, and laughed so hard, I literally woke up my whole family.  Some 600 books later, that book and this series, is still one of the funniest things I’ve ever read.  So it’s a bit bittersweet saying goodbye to this group, but I think Tara gave them the proper send off.

Like all of the books before, there are a lot of laughs and yes, some awkward situations that are so out there, they can only come from Tara’s whacky brain.  But I’m not going to be like a bad Hollywood trailer and give away all of the funny scenes.

I can tell you that this story features Molly (Liz’s daughter, and sister to Charlotte and Ava) and Marco “POLO” (this joke is courtesy of Drew and may make sense once you read the book, or not. It’s Drew after all).

Marco and Molly follow a popular romance plot line, he’s her culinary instructor, she’s he’s student, and they have been attracted to each other for 2 years.  It’s not until after graduation that they do anything about this attraction, and it is in the unlikeliest of ways thanks to Charlotte and her selfish plans.  Yes, Charlotte annoyed me and I thought she did some foolish things.  Thankfully, she has a sister like Molly. . . who really didn’t care for her sister much before.  Somehow these crazy plans bring them together.  Which leads me to . . .

I can tell you there is a baby.  It’s in the fucking title so don’t come after me with your spoiler complaints.

“You had one job to do – piss in a fucking cup without getting pee on my hand.  This is why we can’t have nice things. . . “

I can tell you that Marco’s family is just as crazy as Molly’s.  Both families put these two through the ringer.  And yet they stay together.

“Your boyfriend dresses up like a horse, your opinion is invalid!”
She hops off of her desk and puts her hands on her hips. “It’s not a horse, it’s a PONY, show some respect!”

I can tell you that it’s never good to keep a secret.  As I posted on FB, the not telling part becomes worse than the lie.  I’m looking at you Alfanso!

“Anal is pretty much the sexual duct tape of the world – it fixes everything.”

I can tell you it’s all Tom Brady’s fault.  Always.

Like the previous books, this crazy gang is in full force.  You’ll get:
Cat fights
Men trying to be manly
Oversharing
Awkward moments
A lot of vomiting
And masturbation

You’ll shake your head at the outlandish moments which are so far fetched, you’ll want to slap the characters (I’m looking at you Drew and Jenny) for their stupidity.  But you’ll laugh your ass off just the same.  It’s crazy and immature, just want I needed!

– Grace

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

PURCHASE LINKS:

Amazon US – Amazon UK – Amazon AU – Amazon CA – ibooks – Nook – Kobo

Goodreads

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

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Click on the images below to purchase the books in the Chocolate Lovers series:

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Interview & Giveaway: Tiffany Reisz

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☆ ☆ ☆ Interview & Giveaway: Tiffany Reisz @tiffanyreisz ☆ ☆ ☆

The Shorties had the great opportunity to interview one of our favorite authors, Tiffany Reisz!!! *fan girl(s) down*

Interview

Grace
Sum up The Queen in five words.
The eighth Original Sinners book.
(Sorry, I’m a smartass).

If you were stranded on an island with one of your characters, who would you pick and why?
Kingsley because of all the Sinners, he’s the one who has the strongest survival skills. He could keep me alive. And bang me. But also keep me alive.

This is the first BDSM series I have read that tied so strongly with the Bible.  Was this your intention from the beginning?  How much of the Bible stories did you research and how much was from your personal knowledge?
I started writing THE SIREN while I was attending seminary if that answers your question.

It’s Halloween at the 8th Circle. What will Nora and Kingsley wear? (We know Soren wouldn’t dress up)
That’s where you’re wrong. Of course Soren would dress up. If you read “Christmas in Suite 37A,” last year’s Original Sinners Christmas story, you’ll hear from Griffin about a wild Halloween party where Kingsley dressed like a priest, Soren dressed like Kingsley, Nora dressed like Slash and Sheridan dressed like Axl Rose.

Michelle
​Tiffany I still am thinking about The Queen and cannot wait to purchase it so I can re-read it over and over again.  I still cannot believe that this is the “last book”, yup, I put it in quotes because in my heart, I know you may give us some more eventually down the line.  Anywho, here goes:
Although Original Sinners may be done, are you looking into possibly writing a book from any of the secondary characters down the road?
It’s always possible but currently not anything I want to do or plan to do. I’d love to write more Original Sinners books eventually but The Virgin and The Queen were the two hardest most frustrating novels I’ve ever written. I need a break for awhile to write outside this universe. Someday I’ll come back to it with a fresh brain and new ideas.

What are you working on currently?
I just completed POINSETTIA, this year’s Original Sinners Christmas story, told from the point-of-view of Magdalena, Soren’s friend and teacher from his seminary days. She taught him how to be a good sadist. This story takes place when Soren is 20 and you’ll be able to read it for free this December.

YaYa
Do you have any plans to write another Rom-Com?
Yes! I love writing rom-coms. I had the most fun writing “Seize the Night,” my modern gender-swapped very silly Romeo & Juliet retelling.

Will any of your leading characters become parents in the future?
None of them that aren’t currently parents.

Who is going to win the World Series?
The real winner of every baseball game is the women who get to see those glorious baseball butts in those tight tight pants.

Tammy
Are any scenes or moments in the series from personal experiences in and out of the bedroom, or playroom or a Rolls Royce?
Maybe……..

How do you choose your characters names and looks and status?
Names are very important. Names are everything. I spend a lot of time thinking and pondering and looking at baby name books and lists until I find the perfect name. You sort of get a vague image of a character in your head and as you write, that character turns into a person you can see as if he or she is standing in front of you.

Is there anything that you wished you would have added to any of the books, or a character trait, or scene?
There were a few scenes I wish I could have written. I did write the “Kingsley and Nora get stoned in a bathtub” scene for The Queen but edited it out.

All the characters take a vacation together, where do they go and what 2 toys do they bring with them?
They would all go to the south of France and visit Nico and his vineyard. Kingsley would never leave him without a flogger. Nora must have her crop. Soren loves his razor blades.

Is there anything that you want us to know about the series? Hidden secrets?
I almost gave Soren a pet dog. It was my way of working through my intense desire to own an Irish deerhound. But I didn’t do it. I edited that out too.

What is the strangest thing a fan has asked you?
Did you base the series on Depeche Mode songs? Answer? No. Maybe Pet Shop Boys songs, but no Depeche Mode. Don’t be ridiculous.

What is the strangest thing a fan has given you?
That’s a hard one. I get a lot of weird gifts. But the funniest gift was when a fan from Kentucky came to see me in NYC and asked if I wanted anything from Kentucky. I asked for Grippo’s which is a kind of local potato chip and she actually brought them. A fan also brought me an Oreo Blizzard to a signing and God, I love that woman.

What is the strangest thing a fan has shown you?
A “fan’ sent me naked pictures of herself which is not cool. Absolutely not cool. You do  not ever send unsolicited naked pictures to anyone, not even the erotica author. I have the internet. I can find my own porn.

SPEED ROUND
Inside The Author With Twenty Questions

  1. What is your favorite word?

Bumblebee

  1. What is your least favorite word?

Squat

  1. What turns you on?

New office supplies.

  1. What turns you off?

A lack of empathy for the less fortunate

  1. What sound or noise do you love?

You know that weird industrial sound in CONTACT? The sound the aliens make that Jodie Foster hears? I love that sound. Best movie sound ever.

  1. What sound or noise do you hate?

The smoke alarm

  1. What is your favorite curse word?

I like shouting “Holy poop!” which isn’t a swear word but takes the place of one.

  1. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?

Train engineer.

  1. What profession would you not like to do?

Anything involving child-care. That shit is HARD WORK.

  1. What are you reading right now?

SILVER THAW by Catherine Anderson. It takes place in Central Oregon where I live! Exciting!

  1. What book(s) do you urge readers to read?

“Kushiel’s Dart” by Jacqueline Carey.
“The Vintner’s Luck” by Elizabeth Knox.
“The Winter Prince” by Elizabeth Wein.
“All the Kings’s Men” by Robert Penn Warren.

  1. What inspires you?

Everything. Seriously. I get ideas everywhere.

  1. What is your favorite indulgence?

Chocolate chip cookies.

  1. What is your favorite movie?

The Princess Bride

  1. What is your favorite piece of clothing?

My sock monkey pajama pants.

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

Chocolate.

  1. What is something you like to collect?

Books obviously!

  1. What item must you have with you at all times?

A pen.

  1. What city could you get lost in for hours to explore?

Savannah, Georgia.

  1. What is one thing about you that would surprise us?

I’m terribly terribly boring.

Last After Dark Question: Who is your favorite Star Wars character?

Luke.

THANK YOU TIFFANY!!!

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Have you read The Queen yet?  If you didn’t notice from our review, we kind of LOVED it!  Enter to win a signed copy of The Queen.

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Book Review: One More Rule by Nikki Sloane

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Title: One More Rule
Author: Nikki Sloane
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Erotic
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis

One week back in Chicago to witness our best friends get married. One hot night to help them celebrate. And one rule for the bride and groom to obey: no more sex until the wedding.

After the evening Dominic and I have planned, who will break first?

Michelle's Review

Logan, Evie, Payton and Dominic are back for this quick and sexy novella.  Logan and Evie are finally heading down the aisle.  Payton and Dominic are back from Japan and have some fun and sexy plans for the newlyweds-to-be.  Payton and Dominic find out that Evie has been withholding sex from Logan for the past month so their wedding night could be special.  One more Rule!  Uhm, what?  If you’ve read Three Simple Rules, and please do so before heading over to read this novelal, you do not withhold sex from the sexy and filthy talking Logan, is she crazy?

 

There are some serious side bets between the couples as to see if Evie will go through the plan, especially with the sexy fun times that is supposed to happen and to make things interesting, Evie and Logan must wear blindfolds to their destinations.  Yes, there was several trips, first to a drag show then to a strip joint.  Private dances, for Evie and Logan had them really primed, especially since bets were on the line.  And how does one get kicked out of a strip club? 

 

Nikki Sloane still delivers the steamy sexy times with these two couples.  I adore both these couples and will miss reading them, but I have a feeling we may be seeing another novella, come one we need one for Payton and Dominic.  I love when he calls Payton devil woman!  A quick hot read to satiate your smutty minds. 

-Michelle

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

Amazon

Goodreads

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

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Book Review: Child Star by J.J. McAvoy

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Title: Childstar (Childstar #1)
Author: J.J. McAvoy @JJMcAvoy
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 95 pages
Rating: 4.5 stars

Synopsis

Amelia London is America’s sweetheart. Noah Sloan is America’s bad boy. Both are former child stars and once were lovers. When they are cast as the leads in the upcoming erotic suspense blockbuster—Sinners Like Us—they are forced to come to terms with the issues that tore them apart to begin with.

As the whole world watches, can they keep their secrets hidden? After all, everybody is a sinner.

Grace Review

Hollywood and all the drama that comes with it, is the perfect fit for the romance genre.  You have fragile egos, temptation, bad rumors and greedy managers/family members.  All of those plot lines play a part in this quick read, as book 1 of a 3 part serial.

My initial impressions on the 2 child stars and former lovers:
***Amelia is a bit weak and seems let people walk all over her.
***Noah is an ass who does whatever he wants no matter what the consequences.

“You both were children who were forced to become adults, and now you’re adults who are acting like children.”

But everything isn’t as it seems.

As we get to know the character’s more, my initial impressions were proved wrong:
***Amelia stands up for what she wants and doesn’t fall weak to criticism.  In addition, she will always put Noah first, no matter how he treats her.  Is she a doormat or a loyal friend?  That’s up to you to decide.
***Noah cares about more than he shows.  He has a lot of reasons for what he does.  These reasons come out in a huge twistapoloza at the end of the book.

Even after all these years, Amelia London was my kryptonite, and she still didn’t know it.

Can Amelia and Noah fight off the treats that come close to home?  Can they maintain the connection that has been rebuilt?

We’ll have to wait for part 2, to find out.

– Grace

*An ARC was received from the publisher via NetGalley for an honest review.

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Book Review: The Queen by Tiffany Reisz

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Title: The Queen (The White Years #4)
Author: Tiffany Reisz
Genre: Erotic
Length: 400 pages
Rating: 5 stars

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Synopsis

Once upon a time, Nora and Søren made a fateful deal—if he gave her everything, she would give him forever. 

The time has finally come to keep their promises. 

Out of money and out of options after her year-long exile, Eleanor Schreiber agrees to join forces with Kingsley Edge, the king of kink. After her first taste of power as a Dominant, Eleanor buries her old submissive self and transforms into Mistress Nora, the Red Queen. With the help of a mysterious young man with a job even more illicit than her own, Nora squares off against a cunning rival in her quest to become the most respected, the most feared Dominatrix in the Underground. 

While new lovers and the sweet taste of freedom intoxicate Nora, she is tempted time and time again by Søren, her only love and the one man who refuses to bow to her. But when Søren accepts a new church assignment in a dangerous country, she must make an agonizing choice—will the queen keep her throne and let her lover go, or trade in her crown for Søren’s collar? 

With a shattering final confession, the last link in the chain is forged in The Original Sinners saga. It’s the closing chapter in a story of salvation, sacrifice and the multitude of scars we collect in the name of ecstasy—and love.

Shorties reivew

We love this series and author so much, we each wanted to give a review on this book.

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Grace Review

This is one of those books that I feel you need to go in blind to. Every fan should experience this book on their own. Hopefully my letter conveys why this is a MUST READ.

Dear Ms.Reisz,

Several years, based on the recommendations of my friends, I read The Siren. That story that brought me into a world I know little about and showed me a very different side to the BDSM world and the people who enjoy it. Did I like Soren in that book? No. But you told me and your readers to trust you. And I did. By the Mistress, you had convinced me why he is so special. Then I get to this book, and you break my heart over and over, in a good way as I fell more in love with Soren. I felt that this book, more than any other before, really delved deep into the relationship between Soren and Nora and their love story. It was sad and beautiful all at once.

“Come back to me.”

While I wasn’t always on board with Soren, from page one of The Siren, I have loved Nora. She’s my one of my all-time favorite heroines. I feel like this book among both series, exposed her the most, in good and bad ways, as she takes on a new life role. Her fears of failure and then confidence, made me love her even more. And that scene with Milady, perfection.

I am that reader that hates cheating, yet I have come to accept the open relationships Nora and Kingsley have with others.

I am that reader that hadn’t recovered from The Mistress. I was a green eyed monster when it came to Grace. But you have taught me to accept what happened since ultimately, no one was hurt. Well not emotionally at least, lol. Getting Nora’s thoughts on the whole incident, put it all in a new light and now I fully understand.

What I love about your stories is that there is a reason for everything. Whether it is explained in one book or another, those things that happen that we the reader, challenge, are written for a reason. That lock of hair, that kiss. I could totally relate to Nora’s anger. But like everything else, there was a reason for it. You are truly a wicked genius!

For a series I have come to love and consider it one of the best erotic series ever written, it is hard to say goodbye. My finger kept trying to scroll on my kindle, with an ending arrived sooner than I wanted. Reflecting back, I feel sated. You gave me and other readers, a beautiful ending.

Thank you for giving me this was a dirty fun ride. I enjoyed every minute!

XOXO,
Grace

Michelle's Review

5+++++++++ “I’ll Give You Everything” Stars

 

Here’s my confession, while one day trolling through Twitter back in late 2011, I kept seeing the promo for The Siren by Tiffany Reisz.  I read the synopsis and will admit that I was a wee bit uncomfortable.  I’m a Catholic, and I would really consider myself a Jesuit Catholic, my mind is more liberal at most, conservative at best.  Oxymoron much you say?  Probably, but I’m sticking with this analogy, so bear with me okay.  So months later and a few more Tweets about people going on and on about The Siren, I say to myself, “okay just one-click the bitch already”.  BEST DECISION EVER.  So I devoured the The Angel, The Prince and The Mistress.  I meet my co-bloggers Yaya and Rachel on Twitter reading The Mistress and later on met Grace.  TR (as we love referring to her) let’s her fans know that she is writing the Prequel and will call it the White Years.  On to The Saint, The King, The Virgin and of course, Ms. Reisz saves the best for last The Queen.

 

I’m not going to say much about The Queen, you need to read it, experience it and fall in love all over again with Soren, Kingsley and of course, Nora.  You know the saying, everything comes full circle?  TR did it with the final installment of the Original Sinners Series, or it is really final, hmm?  Besides the beautifully written words of the story, you all get your Bible stories all packed into this book.  Yes, it will want you to pick up your Bible and wanting to read the stories.

 

Besides the vulnerabilities of the main characters, you get a lot of funny moments.  God, I love Nora’s sick sense of humor.  Nora telling Soren about the new virgin she de-flowed  “Third one I’ve found.  I even have a punch card-if I fuck two more virgins I get a free frozen yogurt on my birthday.” 

 

As I sit here trying to type this review, I will admit that I am teary eyed.  I have a lot of emotions because truthfully I want to hold on to these characters forever.  So here’s one of my many favorite Soren quotes, and I dedicate it these characters: “Come back to me.”  Yes, I am hoping and praying that Ms. Reisz will let her characters come back to me in her short stories that she is famous for during the Christmas holidays.  I know that may be asking a lot, but I just want to keep them in my heart forever.  And now and forever, I will kneel at the altar of Tiffany Reisz.

 

One final thought, although I was crying my eyes out after reading this beautiful book and after the tears had dried, this song kept popping into my head because this is how I truly felt after reading The Queen, “Oh Happy Day” and, yes, the video clip is from Sister Act 2 which I think it is fitting.  

– Michelle

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My heart is full. My eyes are wet. My brain is in love.

Tiffany is a story/word wizard. There is not one or sentence that does not drawl you in and hug you to the genius.

While some crave conventional society baring relationships, Tiffany allows you and entrances you to see a unconventional world be beautiful, loving, respectful and warm and most certainly right for them. All are one family. A family you want to send a Christmas card too. A family you want to just sit around and listen too. A family you want to invite to your child’s birthday party. A family you want to fool around with and it will be ok. A family who just has love.

The Queen gives you everything you thought you wanted and more. All ties are knotted so that we can see the entire story as a whole. We see why one person is this way and they other is one way. It all just makes sense for these characters that we have a huge attraction too. It makes you think outside of the box, it’s bigger are the outside.
Many people ask me what I recommend them to read. She is my number one. They get a look of “what?!” When I explain the story. I always reply with “it sounds crazy I know but she writes it so beautifully you look over, understand their lifestyle and it becomes just a-o-k. Tiffany can write a book on why a worm has two heads and I would devour it.” That perks them up.

– Tammy


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“I told you there were three ways to be a queen. There are four.”
 “What’s the fourth way?”
“You can be born a queen.” He looked up at her. “That’s why you are a queen. Not because I made you one or you stole a throne or a crown. You were born to be the queen and you are.”

So after 2 years, 8 books, numerous short stories, about 86 near heart attacks, and enough tears to fill a lake or at least a large pond we finally come to the end of the Original Sinners series, and I’m not sure how to put into words my love for this book, this series, or this author. This won’t be a review of The Queen so much as a review of the series as a whole because like all of the other books it’s best to go into this book knowing as little as possible. Also, finishing The Original Sinners has me feeling a little nostalgic about all of it (I apologize in advance). I dreaded and anticipated The Queen in equal measure, always eager to spend time with my favorite characters and yet wanting to hold off for as long as possible because I wasn’t ready to say goodbye to them just yet. I’ve never read a series of books that filled my heart with such ache and such joy before, and in The Queen Tiffany Reisz wraps this story up in an ending worthy of these larger than life characters she created. Everything comes full circle and when I finished I felt like there was nothing else I could’ve asked for.

I know that when some people find out I read erotica I get that “Oh really?” look that is usually somewhere between feeling ashamed for me or pitying me, and I will be the first to admit that a good portion of it isn’t exactly high brow literature. In fact, a lot of it is crap. But I’ve always felt that The Original Sinners is a series I would recommend to anyone, even someone who doesn’t read erotica, because it is THAT well written. It’s isn’t just the sex (even though the sex is incredibly hot) that makes this erotica worth reading. It’s Nora, Søren, and Kingsley. It’s the unconditional love they share that seems to defy all odds and the inextricable link of their lives as if they were somehow brought together by destiny. We get to know these characters inside and out over the course of years to the point where they began to feel like real people to me. I know Tiffany says she doesn’t write romance but I’d be hard pressed to find a story filled with more love than this one. For me good erotica has hot sex, but great erotica has to have something more. It has to make me feel, and no other series has made me feel like this one.

If someone told me I could only read one series for the rest of my life, it would have to be this one. I’ve read a lot of books. Most of them, even the ones I enjoy or even love, I rarely go back to, and yet I always go back to Nora, Søren, and Kingsley. I’ve read these books more times than I can count and I know that years from now I will continue to go back to them. Like Alice falling through the rabbit hole, I was introduced to a world that was so unlike anything I’d witnessed in real life. It was a world that some people on the outside would call “ugly” or “wrong” but Tiffany Reisz made it seem beautiful. I want to thank her for allowing us into this dark and intriguing world inside her head for a little while. I even want to thank her for all the mindfucks and torture she put me through and reminding me that a little pain makes the sweet moments all the sweeter. I want to thank her for giving me Nora, the best heroine I’ve ever had the fortune of reading, a heroine that all others will be measured against and found lacking. When people complain that “there are no strong females in romance” I always point to Nora and say “she’s who I want to be when I grow up”. Mostly I want to thank her for Søren, my favorite character in any book ever. Maybe I’m weird but I loved him from the beginning, and with every line and every book my love for him grew, and by the time I finished The Queen my heart felt full to bursting. The Queen was the final piece of the puzzle in the evolution of Nora Sutherlin, from submissive Eleanor Schreiber to the Mistress Nora we know and love in the Red Years, and just like the other books this one broke my heart only to mend it up in the most beautiful ways, and I can’t thank Tiffany Reisz enough for that. It was truly one hell of a ride.

“Eleanor, I will never truly be gone from you. I will never leave you or forsake you.” “Where you go I will go. Your God will be my God,” Nora continued the verse. “Where you die, there I will be buried.”
“And we will have each other forever. In this life and the next.”
“Promise?” she asked.
“Anything for you, Little One,” he said. “Everything for you.”

– Rachel


YaYa's Review

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– Yaya

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*An ARC was received from the publisher via NetGalley for an honest review.

**Teasers made by Yaya.

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Book Review: Friction by Sawyer Bennett

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Title: Friction (Legal Affairs #8)
Author: Sawyer Bennett @bennettbooks
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 288 pages
Rating: 4.5 stars

Synopsis

At the powerhouse law firm of Knight & Payne, winning comes first and ethics a distant second. Leary Michaels uses her female charms to daze opponents, and it’s always worked well—until now. On her most personal case yet, she finds herself going up against a defense attorney just as skilled, shameless, and seductive as she is.

Reeve Holloway has never met a woman as sure of her own sexuality, or as ruthless in wielding it, as Leary is. But he won’t be toyed with. What Leary starts, he’ll finish—in the courtroom, the bedroom, or any-damn-place he wants. The sex is uninhibited, electrifying, and absolutely against the rules. Reeve’s job is to ruin Leary’s case…even if it destroys her in the process and costs him the woman he’s come to love.

Michelle's Review

Having been a huge fan of the Legal Affairs Series with Mac and Matt, and then Macy and Cole, now Ms. Bennett introduces us to Leary and Reeve.  Matt will always have a piece of my heart, but I think Reeve is closely creeping into my heart (and possibly panties, but let’s not tell Matt ok).

Leary Michaels is a junior partner and civil litigator at Knight & Payne.  She’s smart, beautiful and uses her feminine wiles to get into the opponent’s head especially if they are of the opposite sex. so when she has to argue a motion on a case that is so personal to her, she’s not only pissed off by the frivolous motion, but does her homework to find out who’s the idiot that would make such a motion in the first place.  

Reeve Holloway had no way in knowing that the sexy hot woman who so sexily is seen taking off her stocking in the elevator would be his adversary.  To say he was a bit fluster during his argument would be an understatement.  He’s both annoyed yet aroused with Leary Michaels.  

Leary and Reeve has some intense chemistry from the very beginning.  And although they are adversaries in this particular case, they immediately know that the sexual tension between each other will not go away.  Let the sexing olympics begin!

From the very beginning you knew Leary had a sad upbringing and I wanted to know why this particular case was so important to her.  I loved how Reeve truly respected Leary on a professional level.  I especially loved his Alpha tendencies with Leary.  She loved and craved his bedroom domination that’s for sure.  My heart was literally racing with regards to information on the case that could make or break for Leary.  You see, it’s a slippery slope when you’re having an affair with opposing counsel.  Will this case eventually be a test or just put these two in jeopardy of losing each other?  Well one click to get your answers.  I loved this book and could not put it down.  I really hope Ms. Bennett writes Ford’s story next.

– Michelle

*An ARC was received for an honest review.

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Book Review & Giveaway: Walk Through Fire by Kristen Ashley

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Title: Walk Through Fire (Chaos #4)
Author: Kristen Ashley @KristenAshley68
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 615 pages
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis

Millie Cross knows what it’s like to burn for someone. She was young and wild and he was fierce and even wilder-a Chaos biker who made her heart pound. They fell in love at first sight and life was good, until she learned she couldn’t be the woman he needed and made it so he had no choice but to walk away. Twenty years later, Millie’s chance run-in with her old flame sparks a desire she just can’t ignore. And this time, she won’t let him ride off . . .

Bad boy Logan “High” Judd has seen his share of troubles with the law. Yet it was a beautiful woman who broke him. After ending a loveless marriage, High is shocked when his true love walks back into his life. Millie is still gorgeous, but she’s just a ghost of her former self. High’s intrigued at the change, but her betrayal cut him deep-and he doesn’t want to get burned again. As High sinks into meting out vengeance for Millie’s betrayal, he’ll break all over again when he realizes just how Millie walked through fire for her man.

Ivy

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The Oh So Good: Kristen Ashley made me freaking cry. Again.

Normally, I’m fluffy bunny reader, so I tend to stick to low-angsty, funny and sweet in my reads. The Chaos series has had its moments, but it’s the biker series that takes me into that MC world but also keeps me safe. So believe me when I say I was shocked, because I spent the first half of this book ugly crying. Like, tears pouring down my face, trying to read this quietly and not let my husband know that I’m a blubbering mess because of Logan and Millie. It was ridiculous. I wasn’t prepared for that, but I cannot help but sympathize with a suffering heroine like Millie and seems I also have a soft spot for a hero who can be a prick, as long as I understand why.

Millie has simply existed for 20 years. Years that she has stayed away from Logan “High” Judd for reasons unknown to the reader and to High at first (though you can guess). Years of nothing but emotional pain and solitude for Mille. And it gets worse, way worse, before it gets better. High has been in a loveless marriage, with the only things that matter to him being his two girls Cleo and Zadie. Until Millie comes back into his life. She was IT for him, but she cut him loose with no real explanation and he went down a dark path, living life on the edge, not caring if he lived or died.

When Millie stumbles upon Logan and realizes that he’s divorced and has kids, she pulls up the courage to go to him and try to explain what happened all those years ago and set them both free from the past.  That reunion is as full of passion and pain as any I’ve read in a long while and I was swept up in its wake, bobbing in a little sea of my own tears. For that alone, I have to give high marks.

The story is told in dual first person POV, so you get some good time in Millie and Logan’s heads The first half also jumps from the present to the past, so you can see the happy times, the early days of Chaos and the ties that bound them together. Which was great because frankly, Logan is a grade A asshole to Millie, so without the explanation, without seeing to see the love through the hurt and pain, it wouldn’t have played the same way for me.

The love between Logan and Millie and their love of family – the ones they came from, the one they created with Chaos, and the one they hoped to have together one day – was so strong, I was rooting for them to work it out and seeing Millie realize the foolishness of her own actions, and High truly acknowledging and appreciating the sacrifice that Millie made for him was just the balm needed to give me those happy sighs. Bonus, there’s an ex but she’s not a crazy biznitch but a reasonable adult. Honestly, for the first half I was anticipating another 5 star read. And then…

The Not So Good: You know the horror of premature ejaculation? This is the book equivalent. First half? Amazing feels, super hot tension, great sex, and angst kept me turning the page. Second half? Well..it’s more of a supersized epilogue.

Now, Kristen Ashley’s epilogues are great, so I can’t truly complain, but the second half rolled along in a sweet way, just catching up with the gang and the dealing with the day to day life, and that is….fine. Enjoyable even. There’s still some trials and tribulations (yes Zadie, you little punk, you’re lucky you shaped up), but much like the aftershocks of a good orgasm, it’s not unpleasant, but nowhere near the tension and joy you feel pre-orgasm.

Everything in Between: The Valenzuela threat is alive and well…but I needed there to be some big emotional stakes, ratcheting up the tension and making something happens that matters. This was too safe and felt like a big fake out. For Valenzuela to reach that next level of awfulness, I need him to be more than just a cardboard cutout villain. While I appreciate the safety of these books, I also feel that eventually you need to take it to the next level or the threat ceases to be effective. Right now, he’s just the threat just because there needs to be one, not because there genuinely is one. I’m hoping that part of the overarching storyline gets stronger, because it’s time to step up.  The hints about Snapper and Hound have solid promise, so I’m definitely hanging in and enjoying the ride.

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I truly did enjoy my time with Millie and Logan. If you’re a fan of Kristen Ashley and this Chaos series, I encourage you to give it a shot for the first half alone.  I’m eager to see what’s next up for this MC club.

– Ivy

*An ARC was received from the publisher via NetGalley for an honest review.

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Click on the images below to purchase the previous books in the Chaos series:

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Click on the images below to purchase the books in the Dream Man series:

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Giveaway text

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I (Grace) was very lucky to meet Kristen Ashley, not once, but TWICE this year. *fan girl down*  Since not everyone can get this opportunity, I thought I’d share the love.  US only.

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Author Spotlight (Interview): Nashoda Rose

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☆ ☆ ☆ Author Spotlight: Nashoda Rose @nashodarose ☆ ☆ ☆

Several years ago, a book called Torn From You appeared on NetGalley.  Yaya  reaced out to Nashoda and got a copy of the prequel.  After reading that prequel, With You, there was no way to NOT read the next book.  A fighter, musican, and sex slavery.  That’s a lot of romance themes, but Nashoda made it work.  It was dark and sexy and we wanted more. Thankfully, this was just the beginning of a great series that always has kept us guessing.  And now Yaya is one of her beta readers!

Nashoda has been a supporter of our blog from the beginning, so its time to give some of that love and support back!

Interview

Describe your last release in 5 words or less (include title of book). What are you currently writing?

Nashoda: “Shattered by You” Damaged. Strength.

How did you decide on writing in the dark romance genre?

Nashoda: I didn’t decide. The characters lead me there. When I started the novella “With You” I had no plan except Logan was a damaged underground fighter/lead singer and Emily had a deep passion for horses. They told me their story and boy was it a wild ride, lol.

Who was/is your favorite character to write?

Nashoda: 100% Kai

What was the hardest scene you’ve ever written (without spoilers)?

Nashoda: Without spoilers…? Logan’s POV “Don’t Let Them Breathe” which is a scene I wrote at the request of Totally Booked Blog. I love that they asked me to write a Logan POV because it made me dig deep into one of the most emotional scenes in the book “Torn from You”. I now have it posted on my website.

Would you ever want your books to be made into a movie/TV series?  If so, what series and do you already have actors/actresses in mind?

Nashoda: Movie/TV series….I feel incredibly lucky to be able to write every single day and in a way I’d fear losing that with such a huge opportunity. But WOW ,if that ever came to the table, I’d be honored. I think The Scars of the Wraiths would make a great TV series and the Unyielding series would be a thrilling three part movie.

What is your favorite dark read by another author?

Nashoda:  Damn, really? I’m in awe of so many fantastic dark romance authors. Okay, I’m going to tell you my most memorable, “The Tied Man” by Tabitha McGowan. This book was so beautifully written, incredibly emotional and a year later I still remember some of those scenes. I read it every other night because I couldn’t handle the darkness, but that right there is a brilliant author because I felt everything. I cried, hurt and I didn’t want to go back, but I needed to. I had to. A must read for dark romance readers.

Do you read romance books out of your genre?  If so, which is your favorite?

Nashoda: I prefer the lighter reads when I’m in deep writing and Tijan’s Fallen Crest series is one of my favorites.

Do you celebrate Halloween?  If yes, what was your favorite costume to dress up in?

Nashoda:  I don’t celebrate anymore. But a number of years ago I was ‘half-asleep’ which was so much fun. So, half of me was all dressed up and looking sexy (heheh) and the other half I wore pajamas, had matted hair and no make- up. I had to cut clothes and sew them together to make it work… but it was wicked.

Name one thing you are afraid of (spiders, clowns, etc.).

Nashoda: Spiders

Vampires, werewolves or other?

Nashoda: Other: The Scars 😉

Favorite scary movie?

Nashoda: The Shining

Final question: who is your favorite Star Wars character?

Nashoda: Han Solo

Thanks Nashoda!

About

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Nashoda Rose is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who lives in Toronto with her assortment of pets. She writes contemporary romance with a splash of darkness, or maybe it’s a tidal wave.

When she isn’t writing, she can be found sitting in a field reading with her dogs at her side while her horses graze nearby. She loves interacting with her readers and chatting about her addiction—books.
#SocialLinks

Facebook  Twitter  Goodreads  Website  Newsletter

If you haven’t read them already, check out Nashoda’s books:

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Book Title: With You (Tear Asunder #0.5)
Genre: Dark Romance
Length: 65 pages

Synopsis

Sculpt is an illegal fighter.

He’s also the lead singer of a local rock band.

No one knows his real name.

And from the moment I met him, he made me forget mine.

In order to convince Sculpt to give me self-defense lessons, I had to follow his one rule—no complaining or he’d walk. I didn’t think it would be a problem. I could handle a few bruises. What I hadn’t anticipated was landing on my back with Sculpt on top of me and my entire body burning up for him.

I tried to ignore it.

I failed of course. And having a hot, tattooed badass on top of me week after week, acting completely immune to what he was doing to my body—it was frustrating as hell, so I broke his rule—I complained.

Then he kissed me.

Author’s Note: This novella is Sculpt and Emily’s beginning and how they met. It is an extra and not required to be read before “Torn from You”. Their story and what happens to them is the novel “Torn from You”.

*Warning* Huge cliff-hanger. Like huge! But “With You” and “Torn from You” are released on the same day.*

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Book Title: Torn From You (Tear Asunder #1)
Genre: Dark Romance
Length: 305 pages

Synopsis

Love is like an avalanche. It hits hard, fast and without mercy.

At least it did for me when Sculpt, the lead singer of the rock band Tear Asunder knocked me off my feet. Literally, because he’s also a fighter, illegally of course, and he taught me how to fight. He also taught me how to love and I fell hard for him. I mean the guy could do sweet, when he wasn’t doing bossy, and I like sweet.

Then it all shattered.

Kidnapped.
Starved.
Beaten.
I was alone and fighting to survive.
When I heard Sculpt’s voice, I thought he was there to save me.

I was wrong.

(It is highly recommended to read “With You” the novella first).

*Warning: This book contains some disturbing situations, strong language and sexual content. Over 18 years.

This is a love story with some dark elements. Dark contemporary romance. No cliffhanger and next in the Tear Asunder series is Ream’s story (the band’s lead guitarist).

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Book Title: Overwhelmed by You (Tear Asunder #2)
Genre: Dark Romance
Length: 321 pages

Synopsis

Love is ugly and secrets will destroy you.

KAT
I don’t beg.
I don’t cry.
And I don’t give second chances.

Ream, the lead guitarist of the rock band Tear Asunder, deserves a gold medal for best dick move ever when he ran the moment he discovered my secret after two days of hot sex. Then he brings some chick to my coming home party from the hospital—after being shot.
I hate him.

Until …

Ream’s six foot two frame unfolds out of the car after being gone on tour for eight months. I stared. And in my defense, any girl would stare. It would almost be rude not to because Ream was the type of guy who stood out. Not because he was loud and obnoxious. No, it was because he was the complete opposite. Subtle and dangerously quiet. If he spoke, you’d better hope he liked you because otherwise you’d be falling at his feet begging for mercy. Except me … I don’t beg—ever.
But when our eyes locked, it was Ream’s steady confidence that had my nerves shooting off like jet sprinklers.

Then…

Ream told me he didn’t need a second chance because he was still working on his first.

REAM
Sex is ugly. It’s using someone for your own narcissistic pleasure. I did it, but hated it—until her. She was unfuckinexpected. Then I had to wreck our beginning with my screwed up past. I don’t deserve her, but I’m selfish and I’m taking her anyway. This is who I am and it’s too late to change me.

*Warning contains violence, sexual content, and coarse language. Some scenes may be triggers. Mature audiences 18+

A contemporary romance with lots of angst.

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Book Title: Shattered by You (Tear Asunder #3)
Genre: Dark Romance
Length: 321 pages

Synopsis

What started out as a deal quickly became a friendship that conquered monsters.

I killed, but I escaped hell.
Emotionless. Disconnected. Cold. A mannequin. It’s what I’d become in order to survive the years held in captivity. I was able to endure the abuse and devastating loss as long as I remained detached.

But he wouldn’t let me.
Crisis, the bass guitarist in my brother’s rock band, Tear Asunder. He’s cocky, rude, a total man-whore. But the rock star has far more beneath the surface of his inked skin, and he’s determined to make me laugh again.
He made me a “deal”, but really, it was blackmail.
His terms were simple. Until his playful honesty became the building blocks to something unexpected. Something strong enough to pull me from the eye of the storm.

Because even though I escaped years of abuse, it didn’t mean I was free.

For mature audiences only.

Shattered by You is written as a standalone, however, it is recommended you read the Tear Asunder books in order.
*Contains spoilers for “Overwhelmed by You”

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Book Title: Perfect Chaos (Unyeilding #1)
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: 223 pages

Synopsis

Georgie
I lie to survive.

Have since I was sixteen and my world fell into chaos. But I found a way to endure, or rather it found me. Now I’m a prisoner of my own doing, hiding behind a false mask so no one sees the truth. Not even the man I want but can’t have—Deck. But I messed up and the lies are spilling over, out of control.

Deck is unrelenting and will settle for nothing less than the truth. He demands everything from me—EVERYTHING—even if it rips me apart.

DECK
I kill for a living.

Unyielding—It’s how I survive in my line of work. I bend people to my will…except Georgie.
But that ends now.
I’ve played her game for far too long. Now I think it’s time we play mine.

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Book Title: Perfect Ruin (Unyeilding #1)
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: December 14th

Synopsis

Kai
There is nothing I care about.
No attachments.
No connections.
Outwardly, I’m a perfect gentleman.
Until my target sees my knife.
I fear nothing, not even death.
In my world, death is considered a privilege.
But my life comes with unbreakable cruel strings and
when I met her, I should’ve walked away.
I didn’t.
I was too selfish.
And that sealed her fate.
Because one week with me led her into the hands of ruin.

London
We all have unique layers that make up who we are.
What makes us vulnerable or strong.
What we fear and what excites us.
But peel back those layers and you’re left naked and exposed.
They did that to me.
Each piece was slowly stripped away then burned.
I merely existed.
But there was one layer they overlooked.
The most important of them all—the tie to one man.
The man responsible for me being this way.
The man who found me.
And the killer who would do anything to protect me.

Perfect Ruin is the dark erotic story of Kai and London.
Their beginning.
And the continuing story of Vault.

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Book Title: Stygian (Scars of the Wraiths #0.1)
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Length: 277 pages

Synopsis

Danni
I remember nothing of my abduction two years ago. Sounds and scents trigger horrific flashes, but it’s all a blur except for one man with brilliant green eyes. When the tatted six foot two Adonis shows up at my door, my knowledge of the world is shattered.
Bound to the immortal Scar by an ancient spell, we are on the run. Because Balen is the hunted.
And if he dies, so do I.

Balen: Scar
My code of honor was respected without question … until I consumed the blood of a vampire in exchange for a mortal woman’s freedom.
The Scars want me imprisoned. The Wraiths want me dead.
But the woman I can’t forget needs me. And I’ll risk everything to protect her.
Even if it means killing her.

Because in order for her to live—first she must die.

Full-length novel. Come meet the Scars.

Scars: Immortal warriors with capabilities derived from the senses: Trackers, Sounders, Healers, Tasters, Visionaries, and the rare Reflectors. They each have what is known as an Ink, a tattoo that can be called to life.

There are three full-length prequels to TAKE (scars of the wraiths). This is book One.
All three prequels were previously published and have been re-written entirely and are now in multiple first person POVs.
*Stygian was originally titled JUMP.

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Book Title: Take (Scars of the Wraiths #1)
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Length: 208 pages

Synopsis

MAX
Feelings are a luxury I can’t afford. Hidden behind a shield of quiet placidity, I keep my secret safe from those who’d use it against me. Until him—the tatted up, self-centered Scar assassin hired to protect me.

He takes pleasure in tormenting me, chipping away at my defenses as if I’m a toy to be played with. I hate that he continuously reminds me that I’m nothing more than a job. I hate that my body responds to his touch. I hate him.

JASPER
I’m not a good guy and I don’t pretend to be. Condemn me if you want, I don’t give a fuck. You’re nothing to me. No one is … except her—Max. She’s my target. And I was hired to do a hell of a lot more than protect her … I was hired to kill her.
It should’ve been simple, but it was complicated as hell.

Full-length novel. Come meet the Scars.

Scars: Immortal warriors with capabilities derived from the senses:Trackers, Sounders, Healers, Tasters, Visionaries, and the rareReflectors. They each have what is known as an Ink, a tattoo that can be called life.

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