Friday, September 29, 2017

The Charmer by Avery Flynn

* * * *

Don't miss the hot new romantic comedy follow-up to the smash hit The Negotiator...

Hot, filthy rich, and usually irresistible, Hudson Carlyle just met the one woman in Harbor City who’s immune to his legendary charm. Nerdy ant researcher Felicia Hartigan is the unsexiest dresser ever. She trips over air. And she’s in love with totally the wrong man. Hudson can’t stop thinking about her.

His regular moves won’t work here. He’s going to need a new plan, starting with helping her win over the man she thinks she wants. And if in the process she ends up falling for Hudson instead? Even better. Step one, charm her panties off. Step two, repeat step one as frequently as possible.

But what if the famous Carlyle charm finally fails him when he needs it most? Or worse, what if she figures out the one secret he’s kept from everyone, including his family, and walks away for good?

Source: advance e-galley provided in exchange for an honest review

I had only recently finished The Negotiator (featuring the older Carlyle brother, Sawyer) when I found out that there'd be a second Harbor City book with Hudson. I fell so hard for the first story that I was beyond ecstatic to keep that feeling going!

Hudson has spent his adult life honing his carefree, ladies man persona. With an older brother who's successfully steering the family business, he can afford to be the one who takes life a little less seriously. At least that's what he wants others to think so that he can continue to hide his true passion. Then along comes Felicia, a scientist who's consumed with researching ants. Hudson is bowled over by this petite and slightly awkward researcher and can't stop thinking of her. As luck would have it she's secretly in love with someone else who happens to be kind of a mutual friend (it's complicated) and going against his better judgment, he offers to help her get his attention. It's the only way he can think of to be near her and possibly change her mind. Those silly kids. The plan simply drives him crazy and the same goes for Felicia. 

Oh my god. This book was so funny! I loved Hudson's reaction when Felicia snubbed him so hard in the beginning - definitely not something he's used to. The guy is charming, there's no doubt about it. His slight cockiness is tempered by his wicked humour. He knows his audience and he plays it up for them, but it's Felicia's initial cluelessness that's pretty funny. She's so intent on her prize that she doesn't realize there's a guy who's crazy about her right in front of her. Like with The Negotiator, The Charmer doesn't have its hero steamroll its heroine. Even though Felicia has agreed to this plan of Hudson's, and has agreed to follow his advice, she's adamant that she not change anything that's intrinsically true to her nature which makes her all the more appealing to him. And once again, Flynn knows how to set up a steamy rendezvous or two - and there are a few that'll make you blush - before they figure out what exactly is happening between them.

If you read The Negotiator and enjoyed it, you will also love The Charmer which has a more playful, flirty vibe that will reel you in. It also has bad ant puns, ant paraphernalia and a mewling escape artist cat. I am so grateful to Avery Flynn for introducing us to the Carlyle men and the headstrong women in their lives!

~ Bel

How about a giveaway? You can enter to win this ridiculously awesome gift basket valued at $250 filled with all sorts of reading goodies, an Echo Dot, Amazon gift card and more! 

Thursday, September 28, 2017

If There's No Tomorrow by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Lena Wise is always looking forward to tomorrow, especially at the start of her senior year. She’s ready to pack in as much friend time as possible, to finish college applications and to maybe let her childhood best friend Sebastian know how she really feels about him. For Lena, the upcoming year is going to be epic—one of opportunities and chances. 

Until one choice, one moment, destroys everything. 

Now Lena isn’t looking forward to tomorrow. Not when friend time may never be the same. Not when college applications feel all but impossible. Not when Sebastian might never forgive her for what happened. 

For what she let happen. 

With the guilt growing each day, Lena knows that her only hope is to move on. But how can she move on when her and her friends’ entire existences have been redefined? How can she move on when tomorrow isn’t even guaranteed? 

Source:  Advance copy in exchange for an honest review.  

This is a terrible review to write because it's impossible to discuss this book without spoilers and I don't want to spoil this experience for you.  It's something you have to discover on your own, in your own time, and with lots of freaking kleenex handy.

Lena reminds me of Katy from Armentrout's Lux Series - bookish, nerdy, homebody, which is good.  I liked Katy.  Sebastian is a great YA book boyfriend and if I were younger, I would totally claim him as my book boyfriend.  Alas, I am not younger, so I will leave him to my neices.  

Me, while reading Tomorrow.  I will definitely be giving this book to my neices.  There are so many great messages in Tomorrow - friendship, honesty, love, forgiveness, redemption...  It's a cautionary tale, but so much more. And sooo many kleenex!

Me, after reading Tomorrow...

Ok, I will stop tormenting you.  Tomorrow is a thought provoking story written in the enthralling manner as most Armentrout stories.  You won't be able to put it down, but you will want to.  The foreshadowing will fill you with apprehension and terror.  You will suffer and cry and then feel a glimmer of hope and you will finish the book with so many feels and be a mess.  

I'm not much for heartwrenching books, but every once in a while, when it's done well, this kind of book is exactly what I didn't know I needed.  I'm sorry, but you have to read this one.  You have to.

~ Shel 

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Maybe This Christmas by Jennifer Snow

I don't know about you all, but I'm already in the mood for the holiday romances!  I've been scouring the coming soon lists and looking at what I'm going to re-read from last year (I'm looking at you Merry Christmas Mr. Miggles).  Needless to say, we're happy to bring the holiday romance love to you as well!  Don't forget to enter the giveaway below!  


Title: Maybe This Christmas
Author: Jennifer Snow
Series: Colorado Ice #3
On Sale: September 26, 2017
Publisher: Forever
Formats: Mass Market
Price: $7.99

All wrapped up . . .

One more game. That's all that stands between NHL star Asher Westmore and a major career milestone. But then his brother bashes him against the hockey boards, sidelining him for months. Over Christmas holidays, no less. If staying off the ice doesn't drive him crazy, staying with his family will. The only bright spot amidst the mistletoe and twinkle lights: His best friend, Emma, is a physical therapist. And working out with her improves his body and his spirit.

One last time. Emma Callaway was in trouble the minute she and Asher added benefits to their friendship. How is she supposed to resist a funny, caring guy who makes her toes curl? Her heart was safe while he lived in a different state. Now that he's back home recuperating, though, it's only a matter of time before she blurts out her feelings. Emma's only hope is that with a little holiday magic, she'll get the best Christmas gift of all.


Colorado Ice # 3



               Asher climbed out of the car. “Nah. I’ll hang out with Em tonight. I’m her last patient of the day,” he said, suddenly feeling a little better and eager to get this appointment finished so they could go back to her place for the evening. Without the meds, he was suffering a little more, and she was the only thing that eased his pain.
“All right, man. Take it easy,” Jackson said as he closed the door.
Entering the clinic, he tugged the big, heavy old door closed behind him.
“Hey, Asher,” Jane said, standing as she saw him.
“Hi, Jane. How are you?” he asked, approaching the desk and leaning over it. If he sat again, getting up would be a struggle.
“I’m great. Um, actually, I wanted to ask you…if maybe you wanted to grab a drink at the Grumpy Stump tonight?”
Caught slightly off guard, he laughed. “You don’t hang out there, do you? You’re far too pretty to be slobbered on by all the local single men.”
She blushed. “Thanks. Actually, I don’t hang out anywhere. Single-mom life doesn’t lend itself it to many dates. Not that this would be a date…”
Oh, damn. He felt like an ass saying no to the woman who was obviously putting herself out there…but he wasn’t interested in dating. In fact, since his last semi-permanent situation ended a while ago, he’d been enjoying how things were going with Emma. Right now, she was certainly the only one he wanted to be with. “I…uh…”
Emma appeared in the reception area, an unreadable expression on her face as she glanced back and forth between the two of them.
“Well, the thing is…I promised Emma I’d do that…thing with her tonight,” he said, looking at her to save him.
Her expression softened slightly as she slowly nodded. “Right, you did promise me you would do that…thing tonight.”
He smiled. Saved. Now he could resume getting excited about a full evening with her, naked, with no pressure of a flight out the next day or having to be anywhere at all. The idea excited him beyond the sexy thoughts coming to mind. He looked forward to just being with her, holding her, kissing her, and talking. He’d been so caught up in his own problems the last few weeks, he had no idea what was going on with her.
“Ok, yeah, no problem,” Jane said, busying herself with the papers on her desk.
He felt like a jerk. He turned to Emma for help.
“Um…maybe Asher could get you and Aiden tickets for a game in Denver,” she said.
Perfect. Right there—that’s why he loved her so much. The thought made him pause. Love? Of course, love. She was his best friend.
“Right, Ash?” she said when he’d yet to confirm her suggestion.
“Oh, yeah…no problem.”
Jane smiled. “Aiden would love that. Thank you,” she said, sitting back down at her desk as the phone rang.
Emma’s eyes held a hint of amusement as he followed her into her therapy room.
“What?” he asked.
She closed the door behind them and grinned. “You just turned down a hot date to suffer through dinner at my sister’s house tonight.”
Oh shit.
Excerpted from MAYBE THIS CHRISTMAS by Jennifer Snow. Copyright © 2017 by Jennifer Snow. Reprinted with permission of Forever. All rights reserved.  


Jennifer Snow lives in Edmonton, Alberta with her husband and son. She writes sweet and sexy contemporary romance stories set everywhere from small towns to big cities. After stating in her high school yearbook bio that she wanted to be an author, she set off on the winding, twisting road to make her dream a reality. She is a member of RWA, the Writers' Guild of Alberta, the Canadian Authors Association, and the Film and Visual Arts Association in Edmonton. She has published over ten novels and novellas with many more on the way.



The Corner of Forever and Always Release Blitz

We are so excited to celebrate the release of The Corner of Forever and Always! Lia Riley is back with another spectacular story in the charming Everland, Georgia series. Check out the excerpt, giveaway and review!

 Fairy tales aren't ever what they seem . . . 

Tuesday Knight's dream of Broadway stardom has flopped, leaving her unemployed and brokenhearted. Ready to quit kissing frogs and make her own happily-ever-after, she takes a job as a princess in Everland, Georgia's historical amusement park.

Mayor Beau Marino lives an unenchanted existence-all work, no play-which is fine by him. After his marriage ended in disaster, the last thing he wants in his life is more drama. But Everland's new free spirit has a talent for getting under his starched collar.

When the town's beloved but bankrupt park might be shut down, Tuesday and Beau face a choice. Can they join forces, save the day-and each other? Or will their fierce battle of wills destroy any chance of a fairy-tale ending?

In the tradition of New York Times bestselling authors Kristan Higgins, Jill Shalvis, and Marina Adair, comes the second book in Lia Riley's Everland, Georgia series about two city sisters finding love in a small town.


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Lia Riley is a contemporary romance author. USA Today describes her as "refreshing" and RT Book Reviews calls her books "sizzling and heartfelt." She loves her husband, three kids, wandering redwood forests and a perfect pour over coffee. She is 25% sarcastic, 54% optimistic, and 122% bad at math (good thing she writes happy endings for a living). She and her family live mostly in Northern California.

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“I’m nervous.” The tightness in his tone backed up the muscles bunching near the hinge in his jaw. And the simple, honest admission did something to her that no amount of flirtatious back-and-forth ever would.
“So am I.” She began buttering the dish. “Who taught you how to cook?”
He stirred the chocolate in the double boiler, hands clenching the spoon. “Mama used to say that a man needed to know three things: how to fix a dessert, iron his own shirt and sew a button. That some day future women would thank her.”
               “Smart lady.” Tuesday laughed, grateful for a moment to recalibrate, to slow her racing heart. “I suck at ironing by the way.”
               Beau gave her a resolute stare. “I make my own starch.”
               “Stop.” She nearly dropped the dishtowel. “No, you don’t.”
               “One tablespoon of cornstarch in two cups of water.”
               Her gaze fixed on the rare smile tugging the corner of his mouth. The revelation was oddly endearing. “I’m not sure whether to be impressed or terrified.”
               “Your mama didn’t teach you these things?”
               Tuesday thought. “We grew up in small town Maine.”
               “Sounds cold.”
               “So, so cold. So much snow. So much cold. Beautiful though.”
               “I’d like to check it out, in summer.”
               “Yeah, good idea. My dad ran a maple sugarbush farm, made homemade maple syrup. Mom was his opposite. He loved being outdoors. She liked being inside. I guess they were opposites,  must have attracted at some point but over time they repelled each other. Pushed one another further and further away. She left when I was in high school. Moved down to New Hampshire where she was from and met a banker. They live in the suburbs. She has a housekeeper now.”
               “She abandoned your family?”
               “I. . .you know, I don’t know. My sister thinks so. I was the baby. My mom used to love to style my hair. She could do so many intricate braids. We didn’t have much money but she’d shop at thrift stores and garage sales and find me cute dresses. Sometimes I’d find her sad and I’d try to cheer her up. I’d ask her to brush my hair and she would,  even though sometimes I could hear her sniffling and I knew if I turned around I’d see her crying.”
               Tears sprang to her eyes and she ground her fists into them. “Wow. Hello! Where'd these come from.” God, way to keep things light. Her inconvenient emotions would probably sink the night.
               “I’m sorry that happened.”
               “Me too.” She took a breath. Then another.
“Can we return to the regularly scheduled programming? Chocolate is always the cure.”
               Beau looked like he might press forward but changed his mind at the last moment. “My mama taught me how to separate yolks from whites. Can I show you?”
               “I won’t pretend that I have skills. Instruct away.”
               “Okay, pick an egg, any egg.”
               She selected a brown one and he stepped behind her, her back heating against his  chest. His arms slid over hers. “Now what you do is give it a tap to open the shell. No! Not so big, just a little one.” His hand engulfed hers, guiding the movement. “Good. That’s real good. Now let the yolk settle in one side. That’s it. Now you start to transfer the egg back and forth and back and forth, let the white run out like that until voila! All you have left is the yolk.”
               Tuesday gawked at the golden yolk in the shell. “Martha Stewart eat your heart out.”
               He checked the chocolate and milk, it had melted down into a decadent pool.
               “Can we eat that as is? I’m sure the souffle is amazing and all but hey, a bowl of melted warm chocolate is going to do me fine.”
               His laugh was just as decadently rich. “Haven’t you ever heard that good things come to those who wait?”
               “Sure, by people waiting,” she quipped. “They need something to tell themselves.”
               That really got him going, his deep laugh rich as sun-warmed molasses. “Let me make you a deal.”
               “I’m not agreeing until I hear the terms.”
               “Smart woman. When you have this dessert, you are going to say it’s better than the best sex you’ve ever had.”
               She set her hands on her hips. “You have a low opinion of my sex life.”
               “Nah.” He winked. “Just a very high opinion on my soufflĂ©.”
               She arched a brow. “You’re on.”  
               Standing behind her he continued to help guide her effortlessly through measurements and pouring, mixing and stirring. He didn’t grind on her or get perverted, not that she’d have minded. Chocolate was meant to be an aphrodisiac and she’d never experienced anything so sexily mundane as chatting over nothings in the kitchen with a man who didn’t try to cop a feel. He appreciated and and even savored her for who she was and what she offered which right now was fully dressed fairly polite company.
               In fifteen minutes he opened the oven and slid the soufflĂ© in.
“And now?”
               “We wait,” he answered. “Until it’s puffed on top and jiggly in the center.”
               “You have a way of making cooking sexy.”
               “Do I? I guess that helps even the field.”
               “How so?”          
               “You make breathing look sexy.” His gaze lingered on hers for a few beats before he turned and began to wash the dishes.
She stared at the back of his head, his broad shoulders, his narrow hips, blinking in surprise. He seemed wholly unaware that he’d broken her heart and put it back together, refashioned into something new, stronger and brighter.



* * * 1/2

These covers are simply too cute and they convey what is the absolute best about the Everland, Georgia series from Lia Riley -- they're sweet, charming and irresistible. 

I never ever thought that small town romances would be a thing for me but Riley has converted me. She continues the set up she created in It Happened On Love Street, featuring a quirky little town with equally quirky residents and those adorably romantic street names. In this second book, Tuesday (Pepper's sister from the first) makes her home in Everland after abruptly leaving New York. Also left behind are the ex-boyfriend and her dreams of being an actress. Though she may have quit acting it doesn't mean that she's given up her flare for the dramatic and this is something that confounds the town's mayor, the widowed and very single, Beau. He's not used to Tuesday's view on life. He likes rules, structure and work. He drowns himself in it. As mayor he has lofty ambitions to get his beloved town on the map and thriving once again. Tuesday's impulsiveness is contrary to his sense of propriety and organization. The fact that they seem to be polar opposites doesn't mean that they aren't also enthralled with each other in small spurts. The problem is that they've had their hearts broken with everything they believed in thrown in their faces in the process, and each has reacted differently to that heartache. When Tuesday becomes a formidable spokesperson for one of the town's landmarks, it means they have to work together and time that will tell if they finally hook up or continue to be friendly foes.

I laughed quite a bit while reading this because Riley has a fun way of phrasing things, especially emotions. It's almost like you're there experiencing everything firsthand. There were plenty of moments when I thought to myself, "Same". I'm always curious when two different personalities clash and how they find mutual ground. It's no different here. The inclusion of the POV from the town's vindictive and manipulative archnemesis, Ma Hogg who lives in the next town over, makes for a distinct contrast to the entire town of Everland's generally sunny disposition. There are also a couple of other characters that I hope will get their own stories and I'm happy to have Riley surprise me. 

I feel redundant saying this but I'll read anything by Lia Riley. I've read all her books so far and I've learned that she can do angsty, romantic, light-hearted, adventurous and serious. Each work she has put out has had a different feel to it. Reading On The Corner of Forever and Always was a sweet escape into a modern day fairytale-like story replete with a prince and princess warding off evil, and legends of lost treasure. 

~ Bel

Too Beautiful to Break by Tessa Bailey Release Biltz, Giveaway & Review

Hey everyone!  We are so excited for Belmont and Sage!  If you've been following the Clarkson's you know that Belmont is the big bear of a big brother who was damaged by childhood trauma and suffers pretty severe PTSD.  He's in love with his little sister's best friend, but he's not very good at talking or functioning outside of his routines.  I've been looking forward to Belmont's story since the first Clarkson book, so I'm happy to take part in the blitz.


Author: Tessa Bailey
Series: Romancing The Clarksons, #4
On Sale: September 26, 2017
Publisher: Forever
Mass Market: $7.99 USD
eBook: $5.99 USD

A love of a lifetime . . .

Leaving Belmont Clarkson is the hardest thing Sage Alexander has ever done. From the moment they met, she knew Belmont was the one, and getting up close and personal with him on his family's epic road trip has taken her desire to a new, even hotter level. But there's no way she can go there---not without revealing secrets that could devastate them both.

Losing Sage is not an option. Belmont's heart is hers, has always been hers. He knows she's hiding something from him, but nothing will stand in his way of telling her just how much she means to him. Finding her is easy---saving her from her past could cost him everything.



I want to wrap Belmont up in bigs hugs and then smack him in the back on the head.  Tessa Bailey does brain melting sex scenes and dirty talk, but her heroes have gotten more and more crazy obsessive and Belmont is one of the worst.  I love everything about him, except that.  The obsession and co-dependency in this book are over the top.  

That said, I love the journey of the Clarksons and seeing them all come together in this finale.  Belmont is the glue that keeps the Clarksons together, whether they know it or not.  I don't want to give anything away, but Belmont and Sage go through some crazy shit in this book.  And they are freaking hot together.  What these two do in a church will make you blush.  

At the end of the day, or on New Year's Day, as the story goes, all the Clarksons get a satisfying ending, both as a family and in their individual relationships.  Be prepared for some feels.  




Tessa Bailey is originally from Carlsbad, California. The day after high school graduation, she packed her yearbook, ripped jeans, and laptop, and drove cross-country to New York City in under four days. Her most valuable life experiences were learned thereafter while waitressing at K-Dees, a Manhattan pub owned by her uncle. Inside those four walls, she met her husband, best friend, and discovered the magic of classic rock, managing to put herself through Kingsborough Community College and the English program at Pace University at the same time. Several stunted attempts to enter the work force as a journalist followed, but romance writing continued to demand her attention.

She now lives in Long Island, New York with her husband and daughter. Although she is severely sleep-deprived, she is incredibly happy to be living her dream of writing about people falling in love. 


Monday, September 25, 2017

The Charmer Release Blitz


The Charmer, an all-new sexy standalone from Avery Flynn is coming LIVE!

Don’t miss the hot new romantic comedy follow-up to the smash hit The Negotiator…
Hot, filthy rich, and usually irresistible, Hudson Carlyle just met the one woman in Harbor City who’s immune to his legendary charm. Nerdy ant researcher Felicia Hartigan is the unsexiest dresser ever. She trips over air. And she’s in love with the wrong man. Hudson can’t stop thinking about her.

His regular moves won’t work here. He’s going to need a new plan, starting with helping her win over the man she thinks she wants. And if in the process she ends up falling for Hudson instead? Even better. Step one, charm her panties off. Step two, repeat step one as frequently as possible.

But what if the famous Carlyle charm finally fails him when he needs it most? Or worse, what if she figures out the one secret he’s kept from everyone, including his family, and walks away for good?

Read Today:

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Enter the Giveaway!

About the Author:

Avery Flynn is an award winning, USA Today bestselling romance author. She has three slightly-wild children, loves a hockey-addicted husband and is desperately hoping someone invents the coffee IV drip. She was a reader before she was a writer and hopes to always be both. She loves to write about smartass alpha heroes who are as good with a quip as they are with their *ahem* other God-given talents. Her heroines are feisty, fierce and fantastic. Brainy and brave, these ladies know how to stand on their own two feet and knock the bad guys off theirs.

Connect with Avery:

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