Friday, October 28, 2016

Blog Tour:Beard Science by Penny Reid - Review! (@ReidRomance)

Author: Penny Reid
Publication Date: October 11, 2016
Published: Cipher-Naught 
Source: Indiesage PR

My Rating:

Make a deal with the devil and you might get what you want, but will it be what you need? Jennifer Sylvester wants one thing, and that one thing is NOT to be Tennessee’s reigning Banana Cake Queen. Ever the perpetual good girl and obedient daughter, Jennifer is buckling under the weight of her social media celebrity, her mother’s ambitions, and her father’s puritanical mandates. Jennifer is officially desperate. And desperate times call for Cletus Winston. Cletus Winston is a puzzle wrapped in a mystery covered in conundrum sauce, and now he’s in a pickle. Despite being convinced of his own omniscience, extortion by the exalted Banana Cake Queen of Green Valley has taken him completely by surprise. So… what’s a maniacal mastermind to do? Likely, the last thing you expect. ‘Beard Science’ is the third book in the Winston Brothers series, is a full-length romantic comedy novel, and can be read as a standalone.

Penny has done it again with her sweet as pie, sexy as magic mike, and bearded to high heaven Winston brothers. This time we get some focus on the stand out from books one and two, Cletus. There was something about Cletus that had me wanting this book after finishing the first. He was funny, sweet, and diabolical. In Beard Science, we get all of that and more.

We also get Jennifer Sylvester or as mentioned previously, The Banana Cake Queen. Jennifer is this sheltered girl who is basically living the life that her parents are laying out for her. Kind of like a caged bird. Never experiencing anything for herself. That is until she catches the most dangerous Winston brother in something she can use as leverage. Having what she has, she can use this to finally seek the freedom she only sees in others for herself.

What I loved about this is the progression of Jennifer and Cletus. And the friendship that blossomed. This felt like a “don’t judge a book by its cover” story. Jennifer on the outside is this meek and weak girl who just bakes and does what she’s told. Cletus can shift the perception he exudes depending on the person he’s dealing with. However, both of them are more than what they seem. With the help of Cletus and his family, Jennifer finds that she is strong and can be something more. And with Cletus, we see that there are deeper rivers to be discovered.

“Because knowledge is only a cage if you dell in isolation.”

I laughed, cried (a little) and swooned all too much with this book. I think I loved Cletus the most in this. We got to see so much of what makes him tick. I loved his friendship with Jennifer. Also, I loved more Billy. The two Winston brothers that have been kind of background for me are Billy and Roscoe. I’m still waiting on more Roscoe but having Billy play a bigger role in this was amazing. Crossing my fingers for his solo book next.

Please, don’t read this as a standalone. If you haven’t read the first two books, go do that now. Go fall in love with these guys and their ladies. Then go have some banana cake and sausage. 

SEX! It all started with sex, between my parents. Personally I don’t like thinking about it, but whatever works for you is a-ok with me. No judgment. The sex happened in California and much of my life also occurred in that state until I moved from the land of nuts (almonds), wine, silicon… boobs, and heavy traffic to the southeast US. Like most writers I like to write, but let’s get back to sex. Eventually I married and gave birth to 2 small people-children (boy-6, girl-4 as of this writing). By day I’m a biomedical researcher with focus on rare diseases. By night I’m a knitter, sewer, lino block carver, fabric printer, soap maker, and general crafter. By the wee hours of the morning or when I’m intoxicated I love to listen to the voices in my head and let them tell me stories. I hope you enjoy their stories.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Blog Tour: To Love and to Cherish by Lauren Layne - Review! (@TastyBookTours @_LaurenLayne)

After 8 years of waiting...he's got 1 month to make her his.

The Wedding Belles #3
Lauren Layne
Releasing Oct 18th, 2016
Pocket Books

Sex and the City meets The Wedding Planner in The Wedding Belles, a contemporary and witty romance series about three high-powered New York City women who can plan any wedding—but their own.

Alexis Morgan has spent the past six years devoted to turning her tiny start-up into Manhattan’s premiere wedding planning company, The Wedding Belles. Now that her business is thriving, it’s time to turn towards her much neglected personal life, and Alexis approaches her relationships like she does everything else: with a plan. Not a part of that plan is Logan Harris, the silent partner in the Belles, and the one person who’s been there for her since the very beginning. But Alexis needs someone fun, and Logan’s all business, all the time—except when a late night at the office ends with an unexpected kiss that leaves the usually cool and together Alexis reeling.

Logan has lusted after Alexis since the day he walked into the tiny Harlem apartment that used to double as her office. But the ambitious wedding planner has always been untouchable...until now. Alexis has made it clear that she’s on the dating market—and equally clear that he’s not in the running. But when Alexis finds herself in need of a date for her sister’s last minute wedding in Florida, Logan knows it’s the perfect time to show Alexis that there’s more to him than numbers and spreadsheets—and beneath the pinstripes and glasses lies a hot-blooded heartthrob. As Florida’s sultry days turn into even hotter nights, Logan’s out to convince Alexis that the fling of a lifetime could just maybe turn into forever...

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Don't Miss Any of the Wedding Belles Novels

Finally we are getting to know more about the matriarch of The Wedding Belles. Not only are we seeing what is behind that icy exterior of Alexis Morgan, but we’re finding out the real story between her and the Belle’s accountant, Logan Harris. For the last two installments of Lauren’s Wedding Belle series, we’ve been given kernels to what kind of relationship these two have. If they’re messing around or is it something more. Honestly, when I found out the answers to my questions, I felt a bit underwhelmed.

I thought that by the time we got to Alexis’ solo book, I would love her. She was going to blossom into this loveable person that has just had some rough times that has hardened her over time. I was somewhat right. Alexis is not in love with love. She has been burned in the past, some would say it was the ultimate burn ever, and it has made her even more focused on the business of her dreams. I did appreciate the fact that we got some good back story on what had happened. And how the Belles truly came to be and how Alexis' and Logan's relationship/partnership started. 

Speaking of Logan, I adored him. My heart broke every time he showed Alexis some affection or tried to convey that he was more than just a friend and she ignored the signs. But when the signs couldn't be ignored any longer, it felt like everything was in the sweet spot. I think the parts I didn't like the most when Alexis fought her feelings or reverted back to her shell. It made her not likable. 

In the end, I loved their ending. It felt justified and ended how it should have. What I didn't love was the overall progression. It felt drawn out in places that didn't really need it. Even though this wasn't the best Belle book in my opinion, I appreciated it. And it doesn't take away my love for this wonderful series.

My Rating:

Lauren Layne is the USA Today bestselling author of more than a dozen romantic comedies. She lives in New York City with her husband (who was her high school sweetheart--cute, right?!) and plus-sized Pomeranian.

In 2011, she ditched her corporate career in Seattle to pursue a full-time writing career in Manhattan, and never looked back.

In her ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.

For a list of all her works, please be sure to check out her official website!

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Monday, October 24, 2016

Book Review: Interborough by Santino Hassell! Happy Book Birthday @SantinoHassell!

Interborough (Five Boroughs #4)
Author: Santino Hassell
Publication Date: October 24, 2016
Published: Riptide Publishing
Source: Netgalley

My Rating:

The Raymond Rodriguez from a few years ago wouldn’t recognize the guy he is today. He’s left his slacker ways far behind him and is now juggling two jobs and school. But the balancing act doesn’t allow much time for the man he loves.
David is doing his best to be supportive, but problems at work and his own insecurity leave him frustrated—in more ways than the obvious—whenever he goes to bed before Raymond gets home. The heat and affection between them is still there, but they barely have the time or energy to enjoy it. And it doesn’t help that Raymond is still hiding David from his colleagues.
The stress mounts so high that a vacation in paradise is filled with turmoil instead of harmony, and culminates on their return to the five boroughs with broken promises and heartache. They have to figure out how to stop allowing their differences to overshadow their love. It’s the only way they’ll make it to forever.

New York to the heart, but got love for all
Lie and die in the fire, where I learned to ball

I am a New Yorker through and through. I was born and raised and never really left so when I read a series like Five Boroughs, it does something to my heart. Every character feels like I’ve seen them in my every day. The connection I have to these characters run as deep as the Hudson.

Release Blitz! A Place in The Sun by R.S. Grey!

Title: A Place in the Sun
Author: R.S. Grey
Release Date: Oct 24, 2016
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When her mother’s incessant matchmaking hits an all-time high, Georgie Archibald does what any sensible woman would do: she flees the country.
Seeking refuge in the picturesque seaside village of Vernazza, Italy, Georgie’s only plan is to lie low, gorge herself on gelato, and let the wine and waves wash her troubles away...that is until she wakes up in a bed that belongs to the most romantic-looking man she’s ever seen.
After going out of his way to rescue her, the former London financier turned mysterious recluse makes it clear that despite acting as her white knight, he has no plans to co-star in her fairytale.
But Georgie isn’t asking for his heart—she’s merely intrigued.
After all, Gianluca isn’t just gorgeous—tall and tan from days spent in the sun—his touch sets her world on fire. With him, Georgie experiences the most intoxicating passion she’s ever known, and it only takes a few steamy nights for her to realize that sometimes running away from trouble is the best way to find it.

I am a lover of books, chocolate, reality TV, black labs, and cold weather. Seriously, if I had it my way I would be curled up on the couch with all of those things... everyday.

I live in Texas where I spend my free time writing and reading. My favorite authors are Mindy Kaling & Jonathan Safran Foer. I'm a comedy geek and love all things "funny". Women like Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Mindy Kaling are definitely the biggest inspirations for my writing, though I think my work tends to skew a bit smuttier than theirs.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday! Characters I'd Name A Pet After!

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish

I actually used to have fish and two of them I couldn't tell apart so they were named Mary-Kate and Ashley. I don't have pets now, but if I did...

1-4. Padmé, Anakin, Luke and Leia (Star Wars). They would obviously be a family of cats. Anakin would have to be a black cat.  Padmé would be a beautiful Russian Blue and they'd have a litter together.  I'd keep two and name them Luke and Leia. Then all four cats would be spade and neutered because I can't deal with more cats. I think having 4 cats would be enough on my poor allergies.  

5) Kenobi (Star Wars) He'd be a beagle or maybe a chocolate lab. 

6 & 7. Sevro au Barca and Ragnar Volarus (Red Rising series). Sevro would be a small wolfish dog.  Maybe a Husky, but the runt of the liter. Ragnar would be a huge guard dog. A breed that would make an intruder think twice. 

8 & 9. Monica and Chandler (Friends) After my fish died my family never replaced them, but I always thought if I did get fish again, I'd name them after my favorite TV couple. 

10. Merryweather (Sleeping Beauty) would be my feisty horse. I love horses and if I were rich I'd have one. 

Royally Screwed by Emma Chase Release Day Blitz!


royally-screwed-for-web  Emma Chase, New York Times bestselling author of the Tangled Series & Legal Briefs Series, returns with the first of three sizzling standalone books about a family of racy, irresistible Royals. Nicholas Arthur Frederick Edward Pembrook, Crowned Prince of Wessco, aka “His Royal Hotness”, is wickedly charming, devastatingly handsome, and unabashedly arrogant—hard not to be when people are constantly bowing down to you. Then, one snowy night in Manhattan, the prince meets a dark haired beauty who doesn’t bow down. Instead, she throws a pie in his face. Nicholas wants to find out if she tastes as good as her pie, and this heir apparent is used to getting what he wants. *** Dating a prince isn’t what waitress Olivia Hammond ever imagined it would be. There’s a disapproving queen, a wildly inappropriate spare heir, relentless paparazzi, and brutal public scrutiny. While they’ve traded in horse drawn carriages for Rolls Royces and haven’t chopped anyone’s head off lately—the royals are far from accepting of this commoner. But to Olivia—Nicholas is worth it. *** Nicholas grew up with the whole world watching, and now Marriage Watch is in full force. In the end, Nicholas has to decide who he is, but more importantly, who he wants to be: a King... or the man who gets to love Olivia forever.

AmazoniBooks | Amazon Print | Audible | B&N | IndieBound | BAM!


 “I have a plan.” We’re in the library of the suite. Nicholas is behind the desk, his hair falling still damp over his forehead from a recent shower, while James and Tommy stand near the windows. “Take off your clothes,” I say, dropping a stuffed backpack at my feet. He stands, giving me a curious, dimple-flashing smile that makes my stomach tingle. “I like this plan.” He pulls his shirt over his head—and at the sight of that gorgeous chest and ripped abs, I have to close my mouth to stop the flow of drool. “Should I send the lads to their room?” he asks. I toss him a Beastie Boys T-shirt and ripped jeans from the backpack. “They can stay—I’ll get to them in a second.” Nicholas puts on the outfit, his disguise for the day. I hold up a thick gold chain with a dangling cross, and he dips his head so I can loop it over his neck. Then I squirt gel into my hand and reach up on tiptoes to rub it through his hair—mussing it at the top and slicking the sides. Perfect. “Do you know how to drive a motorcycle?” “Yes.” “Excellent.” I pull a helmet with a full, tinted face shield out of the backpack and hold it up. “Marty’s bike is downstairs. He said to tell you: break it, you bought…a Ducati.” Logan steps into the room from where he was stationed just outside the door, lifting his hand, like a traffic cop. “Hold on, now—” Nicholas takes the helmet. “It’ll be fine, Logan.” “And,” I say cautiously, turning to the three big, strong, probably-have-a-license-to-kill boys. “I want Nicholas and me to go on this outing alone. You guys stay here.” “Jesus, Mary and Joseph.” Tommy says. James makes the sign of the cross. Logan takes another route. “No fuckin’ way. Not possible.” But the look on Nicholas’s face says it’s definitely possible. “No,” Logan insists again, his voice straining with a faint hint of desperation. “I have an itinerary.” I take the sealed envelope out of the backpack and hand it to Logan. “I wrote everything down for you, just in case—exactly where we’ll be, every minute.” When he starts to tear it open I put my hand on his. “You can’t open it until after we’re gone—it’ll ruin the surprise. But I promise it will be all right. I swear on my life.” My eyes drift from Logan to Nicholas. “Trust me.” And I want him to—so much. I want to do this for him, give him something he hasn’t had. Something he’ll remember always: freedom. Nicholas looks at the helmet, then at Logan. “What’s the worst that could happen?” “Ah…you could get assassinated and the three of us will hang for treason.” “Don’t be silly,” Nicholas scoffs. “We haven’t hung anyone in years.” He smacks Logan’s back. “It’d be the firing squad.”      


    Emma Chase is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the hot and hilarious Tangled series and The Legal Briefs series. Emma lives in New Jersey with her husband, two children and two naughty (but really cute) dogs. She has a long-standing love/hate relationship with caffeine. WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | NEWSLETTER | TWITTER | GOODREADS

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Waiting On Wednesday #72

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Author: James L. Haley
Release Date: November 1, 2016

It is 1801 and President Thomas Jefferson has assembled a deep-water navy to fight the growing threat of piracy, as American civilians are regularly kidnapped by Islamist brigands and held for ransom, enslaved, or killed, all at their captors’ whim. The Berber States of North Africa, especially Tripoli, claimed their faith gave them the right to pillage anyone who did not submit to their religion.

Young Bliven Putnam, great-nephew of Revolutionary War hero Israel Putnam, is bound for the Mediterranean and a desperate battle with the pirate ship Tripoli. He later returns under legendary Commodore Edward Preble on the Constitution, and marches across the Libyan desert with General Eaton to assault Derna—discovering the lessons he learns about war, and life, are not what he expected.

Rich with historical detail and cracking with high-wire action, The Shores of Tripoli brings this amazing period in American history to life with brilliant clarity.
This is a part of American history I didn't know about. And it's amazing how it relates to current events. History goes back a long way. I must admit it was the cover that first grabbed my attention.