Thursday, March 5, 2015

ARC Review: Wicked, My Love (Wicked Little Secrets #2) by Susanna Ives

Title: Wicked, My Love (Wicked Little Secrets #2)
Author: Susanna Ives
Source: NetGalley
Genre: Historical Romance
Length: Novel
Release Date: March 3, 2015
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Rating - 5
Sexual - 3

A smooth-talking rogue and a dowdy financial genius...

Handsome, silver-tongued politician Lord Randall doesn't get along with his bank partner, the financially brilliant but hopelessly frumpish Isabella St. Vincent. Ever since she was his childhood nemesis, he's tried—and failed—to get the better of her.

Make a perfectly wicked combination...

When both Randall's political career and their mutual bank interests are threatened by scandal, he has to admit he needs Isabella's help. They set off on a madcap scheme to set matters right. With her wits and his charm, what could possibly go wrong? Only a volatile mutual attraction that's catching them completely off guard...
There was a lot to love in this one.  Isabella was my kind of woman.  She was smart - especially with numbers, they just make sense and she's a financial genius!  She's also quite awkward socially - you can't be good at everything.  But her social awkwardness is fun.  She has accepted it and moved on with her life (mostly).  It's just a part of what makes Isabella - Isabella.  Watching her discover some hidden parts of herself and find some new confidence was great to watch.

Randall started off as your typical historical hero.  He was handsome, titled, wealthy, and fairly smart.  And he was always bumping heads with Isabella.  When they go off on their great adventure together to save the bank, he realizes there was so much more to her than he ever realized.  Their constant bickering was fun with a bit of flirtyness under it all.  It would have been very easy to take this too far, but the author balanced it very well and it really served to bring out some of their personality.

As the pair race to save the reputation of the bank and themselves, they drift from the standard historical book.  They find themselves in situations where they both would have been ruined socially if anyone had even a hint of what was going on.  I particularly enjoyed the hay pregnancy (it makes me itch, too) and the grand escape from the bad guy's house.

The situations (like the bickering) toed the line of being too far out there, but was just enough and spread out that it worked brilliantly!  I loved the quirkiness and unique vibe the author brought to the story.  Everything adds up to make an historical romance that I won't soon forget.

*This book was received in exchange for an honest review*


More on Susanna Ives

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Review: Savage Hunger (Heart of the Jaguar #1) by Terry Spear

Title: Savage Hunger (Heart of the Jaguar #1)
Author: Terry Spear
Source: Self-Purchased
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Length: Novel
Release Date: October 2, 2012
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Rating - 3
Sexual - 3

As a jaguar he is graceful and gorgeous. Speedy and stealthy. Fierce, independent and
wild. As a man he is passionate and powerful, wilful and wonderful.

And he'll stop at nothing to protect what's his...

In the heat of the jungle, jaguars are clawed, dangerous, and hungry for love. With hopes of overcoming night terrors and thanking the man who saved her life, Kathleen McKnight returns to the Amazon.

A jaguar at heart, Connor Anderson doesn't just protect her, but wants to claim her for his own.
After loving a book later in the series, I had to go back and read this one from the beginning.  I will say that Terry Spear has improved over the books.  While book one wasn't quite as good as later books, it was still a really great story.

There were just a couple of things that were a bit off for me.  Connor's sister, Maya, was a bit immature and childish.  This wouldn't have been a problem if she was young or had a minor part in the story, but she played a very major role and a lot of her decision making regarding this role reminded me of a twelve year old's thought process at times.  I understand her motivations and emotions, but the way they were portrayed just wasn't quite right.  Also, Kathleen is a bit too forgiving and trusting - especially after what Maya does to her.  Ya - I would soooo not get over that easily.

What really makes this book work well is how Kathleen and Connor are together.  They just fit in a way that is really hard to understand.  I loved their parts of the book - which is good since they are the main characters.  Their flight from the bad guys got a bit repetitive at times.  I mean, how many times are they going to almost catch them but they shift and save they day.

Overall, this was cute and really fun. I enjoyed this "introduction" to the jaguar world and I see why so many people are in love with this series.

Cover Reveal: Adam (Cyborg #6) by Eve Langlais

Title: Adam (Cyborg #6)
Author: Eve Langlais
Genre: Science Fiction Romance
Release Date: March 17, 2015


On Earth, when a rebel cyborg leader is drawn into a search for answers, he doesn’t expect things to blow up. And he’s not just talking about his house. Somehow his heart explodes, too, with the last thing he ever expected—love.

Adam survived the great cyborg purge because the military made a mistake, a mistake they lived to regret. They crossed the line when they decided to take away his free will and turn him into a machine. They erroneously thought him a slave they could command. However, their biggest screw up of all was when they didn’t terminate him at the first sign cyborgs were regaining sentience.

As the rebel cyborg leader on Earth, Adam is doing everything he can to rescue others of his kind. Part of his current, undercover mission involves infiltrating a top secret military facility where he comes in contact with a human scientist. A sexy scientist whom he’s ordered to protect.

What should have been an easy job turns into a fight for his life because it’s not just bullets and hit squads he’s got to worry about, but his heart.

How can one fragile female mean so much? It’s almost too much for a rational-minded cyborg to understand. When the choice is given, escape or let her die, he lets his heart decide, and after that, things start to explode—literally.

The Cyborgs: More Than Machines series can be read as stand alone stories, however, for total reader enjoyment and world immersion, it is recommended you read them in order.
Excerpt

How can you not have a television in your living room?” He couldn’t help blurting his incredulous query.

“Because I don’t need one.”

“Don’t need one?” He practically sputtered the words, his disbelief overwhelming. “But what do you do to entertain yourself? How do you play video games? Watch movies?” While it should be noted, he could technically do all these things wirelessly, there was a tactile enjoyment in flopping in a comfortable chair or couch and munching on dietary useless carbs while visually enjoying the antics of good cinema or challenging his dexterous skills as he manipulated a video game controller.

“I work most of the time, and when I’m not working, or researching, I’m sleeping.”

“Surely you do something for relaxation? Your entire life can’t revolve around the lab?”

“I like my work, but if you must know, I do also like to read.” At his raised brow, she blushed, the pink in her cheeks enticing. “Non-fiction books usually about my work.”

“But what about having fun?” As she shifted her stance, adopting a defensive posture, he realized how his accusation might sound. I just accused her of being boring.

“Who says I’m not enjoying myself?”

“Me. Don’t forget, I’ve been watching you for some time now, and with the exception of tonight, when the director left you that mysterious cooler, your heart rate has never spiked, your eyes haven’t shone with excitement, and I’ve certainly never heard you laugh.”

“How would you know if my heart beats faster? For all you know, I’m in a constant adrenaline rush when I’m working. I’m a scientist. I get a kick out of discovery.”

A snort escaped him. “What a load of crap.”

Spine straight, she fixed him with a glare. “Would you mind not insulting me in my own home? What business is it of yours anyhow how I entertain myself?”

“It’s none of my business. But I’d hate to think you’re missing out.”

“Missing out? On what? Fictional creations about absurd situations?”

“Forget television for a moment. What about the simple rush you get out of doing something for pleasure? Like hiking up a scenic mountain. Scuba diving and observing the beauty of nature on a coral reef.” Things that even he, with his analytical mind, could appreciate. “What about the enjoyment that comes out of sharing an adventure with a friend, or a lover…” Why was it, when it came to Doctor Laura, his mind always revolved back to more intimate matters? She drew him like no other.

Her expression turned sad for a moment before tightening. “My work is important. Time enough later for me to indulge in frivolous activities.”

“Or you could squeeze time in for them now.”

“Says the guy assigned to watch over me. Don’t tell me you think us going out to paint the town red is a good idea, given the threat supposedly to CyberGlys employees.”

“You don’t have to go out to have fun.”

“So what do you propose we do? Play a board game? Cards?”

“I’ve got something better than that.” Before she could question him some more, he showed her what he meant.

Reeling her into his arms didn’t take any thought, or weighing of the pros and cons of his actions. He’d wanted to kiss her all evening. Weeks even. Pretty much from the first moment he’d begun observing her he’d wanted to see if her lush lips would prove pliant under his.

They were. Soft and welcoming.

For so long, he’d wanted to draw her against him and see how she molded to his frame.

She fit perfectly, her lush curves a perfect complement to his hard body.

He’d wanted to see if, beneath her prim and serious exterior, there lurked passion.

By all the nanos in his body, she practically melted him with the heat she unleashed with just one long, and sensual, kiss.

With his senses tingling, their lips separated, and they stared at each other, her bright brown eyes behind her glasses meeting his gaze with wonder. A wonder he understood. Her breath, already coming faster, brushed warmly against him.

The moment stretched, fraught with anticipation and desire. The cognitive part of his brain suggested he step away. Getting involved with the doctor, however pleasurable, wasn’t part of his mission. It could prove a danger, especially given her scientific background. What if she recognized what he was? She could jeopardize more than his life. It was an unacceptable risk.

And yet…

The man within said fuck it.

He crushed her to him, his arms wrapping around her tight, his mouth claiming hers with intensity and determination. She will know excitement.

Already her heart raced. It pounded, the blood in her coursing frantically as it brought all of her nerves alive. At the same time, her body went limp in his arms, a languorous arousal weakening her muscles. But she needn’t fear falling.

I have her, and I’m not letting go. I will show her pleasure. With me. And only me.

He could no more help the possessive feelings than he could resist her allure.

Her desire for him rose in a musky perfume, the layers of clothes separating them, unable to hide the evidence, not with his enhanced senses.

It served only to heighten his arousal. Hard. Harder than the steel they’d strengthened his bones with. Harder than the locks on the firewalls guarding his electronic secrets. So hard…it hurt?

Pain wasn’t something he needed to feel unless he chose to, yet with her, he let the agony of wanting her and holding back fill him. The wild urgency was intoxicating. Not ruled by programming or rational thought, he just felt. Felt on a level he’d not imagined.

It made him forget where he was, who he was, and the danger his very existence posed. But lucky for them both, he was capable of faster-than-human reaction because, when the window shattered, he knew enough to spin his body and present his back in the split second before the deadly shards blasted them.

But more ominous than the deadly rain of glass was the thump and ticking of the metallic ball with its flashing red warning.

A bomb. Ah, hell.

About the Author:

~ A New York Times & USA Today Bestseller
~ #1 Amazon Paranormal Romance Bestselling Author
~ Top 10 AllRomance Bestselling Author 2013

Hello, my name is Eve. I’m a stay at home mom who writes full time in between juggling my three kids, hubby, and housework, I write really raunchy stuff–usually with werewolves lol.

I am a bestselling Amazon author, ranking often in their to 100 romance authors. But I’m not just popular with Kindle readers. I was one of the top ten selling authors on AllRomance for 2013 and have had numerous of my books hit the top 20 books over all on Barnes & Nobles as well.

I am the first person to admit I am totally boring and lead a mundane life. Seriously. My idea of fun is shopping at our local Walmart lol. I like to play video games, cook, and read. My inspiration, hmm, I guess you could say hubby as he is a total alpha male which means I often want to club him over head with a frying pan. But, despite his ornery, ‘I-am-man’ nature, I love him dearly.

I’m writing romance, my way. I do have a twisted imagination and a sarcastic sense of humor something I like to let loose in my writing. I like strong alpha males, naked chests and werewolves. Lots of werewolves. In fact, you’ll notice most of my multi partner stories revolve around great, big, overprotective Lycans who just want to please their woman. I am also extremely partial to aliens, you know the kind who abduct their woman and then drive them insane…with pleasure of course.

My heroines, they kind of run the gamut. I have some that are shy and soft spoken, others that will kick a man in the balls and laugh. Many of them are chubby, because in my world, girls with curves ROCK! Oh and some of my heroines are a teeny tiny bit evil, but in their defense, they need love too.

Some of my work does push boundaries and cross lines. Good and evil aren’t always clear in my tales, and in some cases, I’ve stomped on well known religious ideologies. Have I mentioned my imagination is a tad bit warped?

I tend to have a lot of sexual tension in my tales because I think all torrid love affairs start with a tingle in our tummies. And when my characters do finally give in to the needs of their flesh? Well, let’s just say, you shouldn’t be reading my stuff at work. The door is wide open, explicit and hot. Really, really hot.

I love to write, and while I don’t always know what my mind is going to come up with next, I can promise it will be fun, probably humorous and most of all romantic, because I love a happily ever after.

Find Eve Langlais at

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Character Interview, Excerpt and Giveaway: Married to a Perfect Stranger by Jane Ashford

Today we are pleased to sit down with John and Mary Bexley, the protagonists from Jane Ashford’s Married to a Perfect Stranger (March 2015). From February 23rd through March 20th the Bexleys will be answering questions about their relationship at each stop in their tour!
What is one funny or embarrassing thing about your spouse that everyone knows that your spouse thinks no one knows? 
John: There’s nothing like that about me. 
Mary: He talks to his horse. 
John: (turns to frown at her) I do n… 
Mary: We’ve all heard you. Mrs. Tanner. Arthur. When you’re riding along. 
John: (mutters) Speaking aloud helps me work out ideas. 
Mary: I’m sure Whitefoot appreciates it. 
John: You can tell when Mary has been around flowers, because she gets pollen on her nose. From burrowing right in to sniff. 
Mary: (opens her mouth, closes it) Does everybody really know that? 
John: (nods)  
Title: Married to a Perfect Stranger
Author: Jane Ashford
Publication Date: March 3rd, 2015
ISBN: 9781492601906

Time and distance have changed them both…

Quiet and obliging, Mary Fleming and John Bexley marry to please their families and John immediately leaves on a two-year diplomatic mission. Now John is back, and everything they thought they knew about each other was wrong…

It’s disconcerting, irritating—and somehow all very exciting…

Jane Ashford discovered Georgette Heyer in junior high school and was captivated by the glittering world and witty language of Regency England. Her romances have been published all over the world. Jane has been nominated for a Career Achievement Award by RT Book Reviews. She lives in Los Angeles, California.

Excerpt from Married to a Perfect Stranger:
John Bexley reined in his hired horse on a slight rise and gazed down at the red brick manor, somnolent under the August sun. Eager as he was to get to London, he’d felt he must detour west into Somerset to fetch Mary. Her family’s decision to put her under the care of a great-aunt while he was away just showed he was right to fear that such a shy, quiet girl couldn’t arrange a journey on her own. And now that he was here, the sight of this place soothed him; it looked the very essence of English country comfort and peace.

John’s knock was answered by an aged butler. He gave his name, stepped in, and inhaled the familiar scents of beeswax polish and potpourri. The place reminded him of his own home farther north. Golden light pooled on the wooden floor and gleamed on the stair rail. In the rooms on either side of the entry, the furnishings were classic and inviting. Mary had certainly had a beautiful and serene spot in which to wait for him. “Mary’s husband,” he added when it seemed as if the old man didn’t know what to do with him. “I believe I am expected.”

“Yes, si…”

A filthy, hysterical chicken shot through the rear door of the dining parlor on his left, skidded in a turn around the table, and raced past him, neck extended, screeching, flapping its mottled wings. A little boy slathered with mud came racing after it, careened off the doorjamb, and staggered across the entryway, leaving streaks and globs of dirt in his wake. The old butler stiffened in horror.

The bird hopped across a flowered sofa in the front parlor, stitching it with muddy tracks, circled the delicate carpet, and looped back toward John. The boy in pursuit slipped, fell, jumped up, and turned to follow. He flapped muddy hands at the fowl in an inept attempt to trap it.

What seemed like a herd of adults jostled into the dining parlor, then surged forward. “Arthur!” snapped a young woman, her voice crackling with authority.

“It isn’t my fault,” the boy shouted over the wild squawking. “I pulled her from the mire. Fox was after her. I never shot her or nothing.”

As the crazed chicken surged past him, John bent, reached, and snatched hold of its legs. When he straightened, he held the muddy bird upside down, at arm’s length, well away from his clothing. It flapped and protested; flakes of dirt dropped to the floor.

“Good!” said the managing female, striding from the dining room into the hall. “Take it from him, Alice, and put it outside at once.”

The middle-aged maid jumped to obey like a subaltern responding to a commanding general. The butler relaxed. The boy stood to attention. “It wasn’t me, I swear,” he repeated. “I rescued ’er. I killed three rats as well. Would have been four, but I…”

“Very well, Arthur,” the woman replied. “Go now and get cleaned up.”

The boy finally noticed the mud sliding from his clothes to the polished floor. His face shifted from defensive to horrified, and he slunk out. In the same moment, John realized that the woman with a voice like a sergeant major was his meek little sparrow of a wife. 


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Monday, March 2, 2015

Author Interview with Tamara Gill


I'd like to welcome Tamara Gill, author of A Stolen Season, to the blog today for a short interview.

What made you decide to starting writing – and why romance?
I started to write romance after walking past some books in a shop and a novel, with the most beautiful Empire style gown caught my eye. I bought the book, which happened to be a Stephanie Laurens novel. Wow. Fell instantly in love with the Cynsters and my love of romance novels was born. After that, stories of my own started to form in my mind, and I decided to write some of them down. It was the beginning of my own romance with writing, which will be a life-long love.
If you could visit any period in time when would that be?
The Regency period would have to be my favorite period in time. And it’s not because of what wars were won and lost in that time, who was on the English throne, or because of the scandals Lord Byron was causing, but because of the gowns. Since seeing the Empire style gown for the first time, I wanted to know what period had dresses like that. It all comes down to the fashion I’m afraid. 
Do you find it difficult to write across several romance genres?  How do you get your mind to change gears?
I write across different genres, and I hope I do it well. I don’t find it difficult, but I do check facts when writing in historical periods, but not before starting the book, I do it during. I like writing across different time periods as it never leaves me bored. There is always something new to explore, different speech colloquialisms to use and of course, the hero’s are products of their time, so it makes for interesting conflicts with the heroine.
As a fan of historical sites – what are a few of your favorites?
I’m a huge fan of historical places. I love history and all its gory glory. My favorite place in all the world is the Tower of London. There’s something about that place that calls my name. Every time I’m in England I have to visit the site. Maybe it’s because the crown jewels are housed there. *grin*
Are there any popular historical shows that you just have to watch?  I’m currently addicted to Reign about Mary Queen of Scots.
I love Reign, in fact, I had to ban myself from watching it all the time as I was getting no writing done. I also love historical movies, Jane Austen ones especially. Outlander is a given, I’d marry Sam Heughan…oops I mean, Jamie tomorrow. The White Queen miniseries was fantastic, and I loved the play of families that show portrayed, and not always favourably either. If it’s an historical movie, of any era, I’m there.

Quickfire Questions.
Tomboy or girly girl?
I’m an Aussie. I’m a bit of both.
Cats, dogs or something else?
Cats
Leather or lace?
Lace
------------------------------------

Title: A Stolen Season
Release Date: February 23, 2015

Archaeologist Sarah Baxter just broke one of the biggest rules of time travel: leaving a piece of 21st-century equipment in 19th century Regency England. Unfortunately, when she goes back to retrieve it, she makes an even bigger mess of things—resulting in the death of an English earl. Now his brother is not only out for revenge, but he also has Sarah's device. Which means an entirely different approach.


It doesn't occur to the new Earl of Earnston that his charming acquaintance is responsible for his brother's death. He is merely swept away by a passion that threatens his very reputation. Yet he gets the distinct impression that Miss Baxter is hiding something from him. Now Sarah must find a way to steal back her device, hide the truth about the earl's brother and—most importantly—to not fall in love...


About the Author:
Tamara is an Australian author who grew up in an old mining town in country South Australia, where her love of history was founded. So much so, she made her darling husband travel to the UK for their honeymoon, where she dragged him from one historical monument and castle to another. A mother of three, her two little gentleman's in the making, a future Lady (she hopes) and a part-time job keep her busy in the real world, but whenever she gets a moment's peace she loves to write romance novels in an array of genres, including regency, medieval and paranormal. Tamara loves hearing from readers and writers alike. You can contact her through her website, and sign up to follow her blog or newsletter.


More on Tamara Gill

ARC Review: Locked in Stone (Hearts of Stone #1) by Tory Michaels

Title: Locked in Stone (Hearts of Stone #1)
Author: Tory Michaels
Source: NetGalley
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Length: Novel
Release Date: February 23, 2015
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Rating - 5
Sexual - 2

Her enemy is her only hope...

Rose Johnson's adoptive mother was murdered, and Rose is next. She may be the last gargoyle in the world—the last being who stands between this world and the evils of Otherworld. In order to keep her existence a continued secret, Rose needs to find the stone that holds her adoptive mother's soul. Which means enlisting the help of her enemies the Sentinels...

Sentinel Cal Levesque never forgave himself for failing Rose's family years ago. Seeing Rose alive is shock enough, until the stunningly beautiful gargoyle attacks him upon sight. As they strike an uneasy peace—and unexpected and escalating attraction—Cal knows he'll have to tell Rose who really betrayed her family. And with Rose's life in greater danger than ever, Cal has a chance to make up for the past...as long he doesn't fall in love.
 The lore in this series is going to be something new and exciting.  It's so unique!!  I love when an author takes a paranormal creature, one many see as ugly and fearsome, and turns them into something beautiful and awe inspiring.  The gargoyles are protectors of the world.  They close the rifts that open up between us and the Otherworld (not a good place).  The Sentinels are tasked with protecting them.

Rose believes she is the last gargoyle - an orphan rescued from a horrible attack.  But she soon learns that everything she was taught was wrong.  She meets (or re-meets) Cal and the group of Sentinels he lives with and they open her eyes to her purpose and the truth of her life and her past.  Cal is a protective sort - and he tries very hard to put aside his attraction to Rose for "her own good."  After all, he can't protect her if he's too busy staring at her butt.

I really liked how their relationship evolved.  It went up and down and sideways a couple times, but it wasn't because of pointless drama - it was constantly evolving and progressing into something else.  There was TONS of excitement in the story - with Rose and Cal at the center of it all.  Both will have to sacrifice to be with the other and in the end - well, let's just say it was beautiful and scary and just about perfect.

*This book was received in exchange for an honest review*

February 2015 - Monthly Kiss and Tell

Holy cow!  We had a lot going on last month.  Here's a look at what went on just in case you missed something fun.

Features/Guest Posts/Interviews

5 Rating

4 Rating

3 Rating

2 Rating

Cover Reveal/Trailers

Sunday, March 1, 2015

New Releases in Romance - Week of March 1, 2015

Looks like March is off to a great start so far!  There's even one from my favorite authors list down there (Bridget Blackwood - sooooo good).

Paranormal

Historical

Contemporary

Erotic

SteamPunk
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