Blog Tour - Return to Poughkeepsie (Poughkeepsie #2) by Debra Anastasia ~ Ava's review and 2 Great Giveaways
"His heart overflowed with good intentions but his fists felt best covered in blood."
*I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.*
I have been waiting for what feels like forever for the return of the Poughkeepsie gang. I absolutely adored Blake and Livia the first time around and Mouse will forever be one of my favourite characters. I even had a soft spot for Beckett, sure he isn't your typical book boyfriend and his CV isn't exactly one to show off but I always knew he had a good heart and his story with Eve wasn't over so I couldn't wait to see what Debra Anastasia had in store.
For the first half of the book I was so nervous to read. From the synopsis I could tell bad things were coming for Blake and Livie and to be honest I just couldn't read about that, their world was so perfect and full of love, something Blake didn't ever see himself having so I had to put the book down and walk away. My hiatus lasted for two days then I put my big girl pants on and decided to get this done. Both Eve and Beckett would fight to the death for their family so what was I afraid of? Once I resumed reading, I didn't come up for air until the very last page.
We get to see the lives of all three couples yet it is still very much Beckett and Eve's story. I loved Eve, she was such a badass and one girl I would not mess with. The time she waited on Beckett to return just proved how much she loved him. Return to Poughkeepsie is in no way a gushy romance, there is death, debauchery and suspense but for the romance addict in me I loved the theme of tenderness and love running through the book.
"If all this time between them had taught him anything, it was that they were orbiting the same fate. Together, always together, even when physically apart."
I loved the side stories of Blake and Livia and Cole and Kyle, each with their own heartache yet overwhelming love at the same time. It really did keep me turning the pages as I was desperate for more.
The story started off a little slow for me, Beckett was trying to change his life to be the man he thought Eve deserved and Eve got involved in some business with a crazy woman. I couldn't see where the story was going and I worried Eve and Beckett didn't have a future with the arrival of Ryan the sexy cop. It was around 50% the story went full force and the action picked up, from there it was an entertaining ride to the end.
Debra Anastasia has a way with weaving the lives of this eclectic family together, we are given so much detail and amazing characters are created with their world coming to life. In the end I loved all things Poughkeepsie, it was an emotional roller coaster but one I just couldn't give up on. I was surprised and shocked to reach the end to find their story isn't over. Half of me jumps for joy as it means we get more from my favourite characters but the other half worries as it spells more trouble for Eve and Beckett at the same time. My poor heart might not survive a third time! But I have faith in the author, she hasn't steered me wrong so far!
My favourite thing about this series has to be the writing. Debra Anastasia makes every word count, even the details of the supporting cast enriches the story. From Beckett's life in Maryland to the group in Poughkeepsie, they are all linked and all serve a purpose. It really did make a great read.
I highly recommend you check out this series, it really is unique and one you won't forget.
Debra Anastasia is busy, just like every other mom. There's dinner, the dogs, the two kids, the two kids, and her ongoing battle with...ahem... digestive issues, which combined with her adolescent boy sense of humor makes for colorful and sometimes cringe-worthy social media updates. Her first love and crowning achievement is her thriving career as the weirdest mom on the block.
Her writing started a decent handful of years ago when--along with the animals and humans in her house--the voices of characters started whispering stories in Debra's ear. Insomnia was the gateway to plots that wouldn't give up, wouldn't let go. Now they stalk her everywhere. Halfway through making lunches, a twist takes hold and--fingers full of peanut butter--she finds somewhere, anywhere to write it down.
She's eternally grateful to Omnific Publishing, which has now published four of her books: two in the Seraphim Series and two in the Poughkeepsie Brotherhood Series, as well as her novella, Late Night with Andres. That one is special because 100% of the proceeds go to breast cancer research. (So go get it right now, please!) She also very much appreciates her open-minded readers, who embrace everything she has to offer, with a focus on anti-heroes and bathroom humor.
Debra lives in Maryland with her family. You can find her at DebraAnastasia.com and on Twitter @Debra_Anastasia. But be prepared.
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Which Team Will You Choose?
BUY THE FIRST BOOK IN THE BOUND TOGETHER SERIES HERE:
Layla Jennings is a fiery, independent and level headed nineteen year old. Always playing by the rules and doing what’s right, she has been the apple of her father’s eye and her mother’s treasure. But moving to college in Long Beach is about to turn Layla’s world upside down. With the gorgeous, pierced, guitar playing, wannabe rock star Oliver living across the hall, Layla finds herself thrown into a world of music, money, torn friendships and blood simmering sexual tension.
But on taking a job in a local coffee shop she meets the deliciously handsome Jared Garrett. Convincing herself that he is a waste of oxygen she tries to put the young successful business man out of her mind. But when he continues to show up she finds herself constantly thinking of him. Dazzled by his boyish good looks and discovering a whole new world of carnal and erotic pleasures, Layla finds herself falling head over heels in love but with Jared hiding a vital secret can she ever truly trust him?
AMAZON | AMAZON UK | BARNES & NOBLE | KOBO |SMASHWORDS
The Big Apple
Walking through the crowds, I gazed out of the vast window at the sparkling lights of New York. “Does he know I’m here?”
Daniel shook his head. “You asked me not to say, so I didn’t. I’m really glad you’re here though. He’s been fucking miserable since we left Long Beach. Besides, with you here, I have someone to talk to and keep me from going crazy. Things are about to get real hectic at the company. You sure you know what you’re in for?”
I gave him a puzzled look and he smiled at me. “Guess not. Well, you’ll learn.”
Daniel wasn’t just Jared’s driver; he was his friend, even if Jared didn’t realize it or choose to admit it. I felt that the two of us had also become friends. After all, he’d had my back so many times I’d lost count. When I’d been arrested, it was Daniel who’d called Jared and, as it turned out, broken several traffic laws to get to him. That awful night at Felix’s apartment would have ended a lot differently had Daniel not called Jared and warned him of our activity. I had a lot to thank him for and keeping him company during our time together, was the least I could do. I figured that it must be lonely work driving Jared around, sitting there, in the front seat, a screen between them. It all seemed awfully secluded, isolated and impersonal.
I was not going to be one of those high society girlfriends that I saw in magazines and newspapers. The ones that look as though they have caramel stuck to the end of their noses and pout a lot when people speak to them. I was definitely not buying into the hype of that lifestyle. Daniel was stuck with me now, and I was determined to have some fun.
“Do we have to go straight to the apartment? Will he get suspicious if you’re gone?”
He eyed me skeptically. “I guess not. I told him I had to run errands and he’s been so distant, he just kinda nodded and dismissed me. I could have been naked and dancing, and he wouldn’t have noticed. He’s really not himself right now.”
My heart sank. My intense, hot mess, businessman was in pain, and I was the cause. Bitch.
I was desperate to see him and put him out of his agonizing misery, but I was also determined to get to know Daniel better. I was going to be spending a lot of time with him during the next few months and aside from Jared, he was the only person I knew in New York and I hardly knew him at all.
Reaching the exit, Daniel gestured to the shiny, sleek Mercedes parked curbside. I smiled at the familiarity of it. He opened my door and ushered me inside before running around to pack my case into the trunk. He got into the driver’s seat and glanced back, smiling at me. I leaned forward and rested my hand on his shoulder. “I’m starving. Dinner?”
He gave me a look that told me he was unsure if it was such a good idea. “I don’t know. I mean, aren’t you anxious to see him?”
I shook my head. I wasn’t anxious to see him; I was freaking out from nerves and the more I worried, the harder my stomach churned. “Nope. I’m Hank Marvin and I need something to eat before I throw up from nerves.” He chuckled.
I nodded. “Yeah, you know, starving? I heard it on TV once.”
He threw his head back and laughed. “Since you put it that way, I’d be happy to have dinner with you. There’s a burger joint just around the corner, or do you want something a little fancier?”
I shrugged. “I think, a nice juicy burger sounds awesome.”
* * * *
Sitting in the booth, I scanned my surroundings. New York was a far cry from Pasadena or even Long Beach. It was almost eight in the evening, and the streets were still bustling with people.
The burger bar was quiet though. It was one of those nineteen fifties diner types and had a jukebox playing in the corner. The waitress rolled over on her skates and placed the most enormous cheeseburger that I had ever seen in front of me. The smell of greasy food and the delicious vanilla from my creamy, ice-cold milkshake was a welcome scent. Every single bite of my meal was like a taste of heaven. I really was hungry. I hadn’t eaten properly in days and I finally had my appetite back. I was definitely looking forward to my first New York bagel, too. Bagels. Coffee. Ollie.
My heart plummeted into my stomach again and I suddenly lost my appetite. My chest felt tight, and I could feel unshed tears begging to be released.
I could only imagine how broken he was right now. I’d done a horrible thing and I’d done it over a text! It was selfish, cowardly, and I deserved whatever hate or anger he was feeling toward me. He hadn’t replied or called since, and I knew that we were not only done as lovers, but also as friends. He’d never forgive me now, and I didn’t deserve him to.
Daniel frowned at me. “You okay? You seem a little distracted. You’re not having second thoughts are you?”
Snapping out of my mood and forcing thoughts of Ollie out of my mind, I shook my head. “No. I’m just a little tired from the flight.”
He smiled and took another big bite of his burger.
Pushing my plate away, I leaned back and cocked my head to the side. “So, I guess you’ll be keeping me company while Jared works, huh? I hope you don’t mind. I promise not to be high maintenance and to make it as much fun as I can.” He grinned and pushed his plate away, cleaning his hands on a napkin.
“It’s my job to take you wherever you want to go. Jared doesn’t usually use the Mercedes unless he’s going to a formal dinner or social. He’ll take the Jag so that leaves me at your disposal. Shopping shows and sightseeing … I’m the man to take you there, with Jared’s permission, of course.”
Jared’s permission? I rolled my eyes and shook my head at the statement. The whole time we’d been together he seemed to think he could dictate where I could go, how, and with whom. Things were going to change and for the better, I hoped.
“You leave Jared to me. I want to see everything, all the sights this city has to offer, and Jared is not going to stop me from having fun. I’m an adult and it’s time he started treating me like one.”
Daniel nodded, but I could see he was conflicted. “Well, if anyone can handle him, I’d say you can. Speaking of Jared, we should probably get going. You ready for this?” I bit my lip and smiled. I was so ready I was practically giddy with anticipation. Rolling his eyes, Daniel paid for our meal, even though I’d begged him to let me and we made our way back to the car.
I sat in the back because I needed a distraction as my nerves began to swarm in my stomach. “So where’s home for you Daniel?” He looked at me in the rearview mirror. “Illinois. I moved to California when my dad got transferred to another division of his company. I was about thirteen. My mom moved back to Illinois after the divorce, though. How about you?”
He nodded and smiled. “Small town boy, small town girl, and here we are in the Big Apple. Have you ever been to New York before?”
I shook my head. “Other than San Francisco, I’ve never really traveled beyond Long Beach. You like it here? I mean, you must be here a lot with Jared and his business.”
He glanced in the mirror at me again, and I saw his eyebrows furrow. “Can’t say I hate it or love it. It’s where I am. I have an apartment here that Jared pays for and I look at it as just another place I work. It’s not like I vacation here or anything. I’m on duty all week and some Saturdays, so I never really thought about whether I like it. I hardly know it. I’ve never seen the sights or anything else New York has to offer outside of the functions I drive Jared to.”
I felt bad for him and decided then, that I would do everything I could to make his time and mine in New York more fun.
“I guess we’re both gonna have to make New York home for now. Stick with me, Dan. I intend to have lots of fun while I’m here.”
He smiled and chuckled a little. “Dan?”
“Do you hate it?” He shook his head.
“I like it. Dan. Yep. You can call me Dan, Miss Jennings.”
I grinned and leaned forward to his seat. “And you must call me Layla. Deal?” His smile widened. “Deal. Well, we’re here. I’ll get your bags and give you a minute to breathe. You look a bit flushed.”
I looked at myself in the rear view. I was beet red. Nerves were no longer swarming; they were twirling like a tornado in my stomach.
We’d pulled up in front of an impressive building. With its white brick and elegant golden window frames, it was certainly extravagant and definitely expensive. One look at the name above the golden-framed glass door told me I was right. ‘Garrett Towers.’ It was one of Jared’s for sure.
My eyes immediately darted to the top floor where he would no doubt have the penthouse. My heart did a little skip and my insides twisted.
Opening my door, Daniel smiled and held my bags in his hand.
“Ready?” Now there was a question I couldn’t answer.
Ready to go up there? Absolutely.
Ready to see Jared? Oh good God, yes.
Ready to leave my old life behind and start my new one with him? Well, that would come eventually. Wouldn’t it?
The doorman saw me exit the car and nodded at Daniel. “Layton, this is Miss Jennings. She’s here to see Mr. Garrett. Would you please grant her entry while I park the car?” The large and burly gentleman scanned me from head to toe as I stood awkwardly on the sidewalk. I bit my lip anxiously.
Opening the door, he smiled politely. “Of course. Right this way. Let me take your bags for you, ma’am.”
Daniel grinned at me and nudged my arm, immediately pulling me from my dazed state. “You gotta go in there some time. He’s going to be thrilled to see you. Go on. Get in there, girl.”
I beamed back at him and threw my arms around his neck.
“Thank you so much, Dan. Wish me luck.” He snorted.
“You don’t need it. He’s crazy about you. I’ll catch you later. Have a good night.” Giving me a wink, he got in the car and drove away toward a large pair of iron gates, which I assumed, led to the parking lot beneath the building
Layton cleared his throat loudly. Giving him an apologetic look, I followed him inside.
The foyer was a gleaming white and the front desk was a beautiful ivory stone with gold trim. It matched the marble floor perfectly. I stood at the elevator and fidgeted mindlessly. When it finally chimed and the doors opened, I was so caught up in my thoughts; it startled me a little. I could hardly breathe as we entered, and as Layton reached for the keypad, I caught his hand in my own. “I just need a minute.” Taking a deep, calming breath, I held my nerve and nodded at him. He pressed the ‘P’ on the panel, and I hitched a breath as the doors closed and we headed, rapidly, to the penthouse. Well, here we go.
“I’ve missed you so much. When you left that day, I thought I’d never hold you in my arms, feel your body against mine, kiss these lips, or hear the sound of your voice ever again. I’ve been living in hell without you. You’re my angel, and I can’t find heaven without you.”
Talk about a triangle that will slowly pull your chest open and expose your heart to all of the elements of the poisonous world, Sheesh! This series has captured my heart and attention since I read Bound Together about a year ago! And I was so happy to see the release of Burning Up! The story of Layla, Jared, and Ollie will consume you in every way possible. I went through so many emotions reading this beautifully written sequel. I’ve been on team _____ for so long, for a whole year! And NO I won’t tell you if it was Jared or Ollie, but I will say this. I changed teams!! I never thought that I would, but Marie writes this story in such a way, that it makes both logical and heartfelt sense! And yes my heart is sort of broken, but also kind of mended at the same time if that makes any sense.
“I would never forget him. I couldn’t. I was still in love with him.”
From the minute I started this book a smile was spread across my face just for the pure fact of getting back to these three intriguing people. I knew it wouldn’t be a simple story, but I didn’t realize that it would be so all encompassing. Layla goes through so many emotions revolving around what she thinks she wants, and what is actually good for her. And I began to soften to the idea that what was good for her, was to just be alone. I knew that wouldn’t happen as that wouldn’t have been conducive to the story, but at one point I was so torn that maybe I would have accepted it. There are so many things that I want to tell about what happens!! But I just can’t for the sake of not spoiling the story!
“You hold another man in your heart, and I have to accept it and thank God everyday that you’re here with me, while worrying that it’s not where you want to be.”
So I can’t say what happens, but I will say that Jared pissed me off quite a bit in this sequel. He’s overbearing, possessive, and maybe a little crazy. And to be honest that normally doesn’t bother me, but since I have such a fondness for him, I believe I was more disappointed in him. I really feel like I know these characters, so when one does something stupid I’m really affected. And don’t get me wrong Layla has her fair share of stupid moments as well. And Ollie was just a breath of fresh air like usual. So yeah to say I was torn is a major understatement! Layla makes a choice, but obviously that choice will always be tested by her undying love for the other guy! In true love triangle fasion, and I LOVED it! Still love it! This story won’t leave my head for a while, and I’m pretty sure that by the time the ending came, I was content… I think. I mean I’m not really sure how I feel completely. HA! Well at least I know that there will be more of Layla’s story to come in 2014 with Coming Down (Bound Together #3) And I cannot wait for that!
“Don’t deny it. I saw the way your eyes gazed at me as I backed you against that wall. The way your body trembled as mine got closer and closer. Or the way you licked your lips, begging and enticing me to kiss them. You can’t hide it, Layla. Your whole body screams that you want me, even if you try to convince yourself that you don’t.”
Born and bred in Essex, England, Marie Coulson discovered her love of writing in her early teens. Beginning with poetry and song lyrics, she tried her hand at creative writing while studying for her English GCSE.
It was love at first line.
Unfortunately, Marie's career as a childcare and education practitioner soon took up most of her time and writing became something she only dreamed about.
In the summer of 2012 she quit her job and enrolled at university, ready to start a new career as a therapist. This left her with a lot of time on her hands and on August the 20th she sat down and wrote the first chapter of Bound Together.
Bound Together was a story that had been waiting three years to be written and when fingers hit the keyboard...Layla, Jared and Ollie's story was born.
Marie has since written and released two novels in the Bound Together series and a novella. Her romantic comedy novel Diary Of A Dieter has also received excellent reviews and is the debut novel in the Confessions series.
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Blog Tour - Quintessentially Q (Monsters in the Dark #2) by Pepper Winters ~ Ava's Double Review and Giveaway
"You crawled into the darkness, set my monster free, so scream, bleed, call out to me, but never say stop, never flee..."
*I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.*
Q had convincing to do from where I was concerned, I wasn't sure about him in book one and to my surprise he won me over from the first paragraph in his point of view in book two. Once I got inside Q's head it clicked for me, I didn't question his intentions with Tess and I almost didn't care how they got together, all I knew was these two people belonged together.
If you thought Tears of Tess was dark, heed the warning Quintessentially Q is by far darker but only in the most thrilling and twisted way. If you feel you can read with an open mind and withstand reading about tough situations then you really must read this one.
Tess and Q have found their equal in each other, they have found the one person that can accept their inner most desires without doubt or question but Q being the controller that he is, finds it difficult relinquishing any fraction of power to Tess. If you thought Christian Grey was a dark character with control issues, he is a Care Bear compared to Q.
Just when Tess and Q find some equilibrium and vow to make their relationship work, their world is ripped apart beyond comprehension. At first I did worry it was going to be a repeat of book one and I didn't want it to happen but I soon discovered it had to in order for Tess and Q to really confront their monsters lurking in the dark.
Q goes beyond Alpha, he was primal and his comparison to a dark monster was spot on. When it came down to it and Tess needed his help, his protectiveness was innate, it was probably the wrong time to fall for Q, when he was tearing down the country like a monster, that was probably the time to fear him, yet I was in his corner willing him to do anything and everything to protect Tess. He went on to prove there was nothing he wouldn't do for her.
If I wasn't completely sold in book one, I was in book two. Quintessentially Q is probably the most twisted romance I've read and it surprised me, not because of the content but by how much I was in love with the story and the characters, you may feel a little twisted for loving it but I was past the point of caring. I loved having Q's POV, it was definitely what I needed to connect with him. And even though I found it hard to read Tess' POV just for the fact I didn't want any of her suffering to happen, it really cemented both sides of the story and I soon learned there was no one more perfect for Tess than Q.
Usually a guy would buy his soul mate flowers of chocolates, what Q presented to Tess with his bare palm was in no way a romantic gesture to the sane population of the world, but for that little bit of us that lives in make believe, it was the ultimate sacrifice and I loved it!
Once again I really enjoyed Pepper Winters' writing, I was engrossed in this story and literally couldn't put it down. I stayed up until 4am on Christmas Eve as I was just desperate to find out how their story would end. I loved the descriptive writing and that is the main reason I could connect to Q and Tess so well. We were given a vivid picture of their tortured world, even the scenes that I wish didn't take place were done so well. The author really did a fantastic job. I loved the inclusion of the birds, from Q's tattoo, to his aviary to the symbolism of what they meant. It was so integral to the story and added another dimension. Even the formatting of the chapter headings added to the story. I loved it all.
My heart went out to both Tess and Q as their protective bubble was well and truly burst but also at the same time I was so frustrated, I felt pain for them both. Q was trying everything in his power to restore Tess while Tess was surviving the only way she knew how. It hurt my heart to see them both broken but I knew they had been through too much for it to end any other way than them together.
I loved the transition in Q, he began being so closed off, for all he done to try and help people, he spent all his life trying to hide who he really was and it took finding Tess for him to really explore the dark side of him. Some may find his request at the end barbaric and yeah I questioned myself saying should I be thinking this is perfect for both Tess and Q? But do you know what? It was! Their story isn't over, it doesn't end on a cliffhanger but you know there is more to come. They have experienced so much as a couple but now is the time for them to really discover each other and Q can finally bare all to Tess and I for one can't wait!
The one point I would mention is I feel this isn't a New Adult story, some readers may go in with different expectations with that label but indeed the subject matter and themes in both book one and book two are definitely of adult nature. This story is not for the faint of heart.
Quintessentially Q might not be for everyone, there are several scenes of a difficult nature and even the relationship between Q and Tess might test your own comfort levels but if you can go in with an open mind you might just discover one of the most deliciously dark romances ever written.
"Tess wreaked havoc on my soul. I didn't know if I'd survive allowing her to dig deeper into my world."
"I swallowed back the thick taste of lust and murmured, "Too fucking late esclave. I'm ruined beyond redemption."
"Now is not the time to talk about hearts and falling esclave. Now is the time for pain and fucking. See how the two don't mix."
"You stole my loneliness. I may have given you wings, but you've become my gravity. I'll never be free of your force." ~Q
"It felt as if the world exploded on its axis, tripping, spinning, hurling me headlong into sin and debauchery." ~Tess
"That's how I felt. Melting, changing, evolving. I just hoped I survived the transition." ~Q
"Why her? Because she made me fucking happy for the first time in my sorry existence. She made me stronger, more grounded...more right."
"Q wanted me, Q would protect me, and eventually Q would love me. Me, the girl with nothing but a broken mind."
"I had to give her my body because she already owned my heart."
Book one: Tears of Tess
A New Adult Dark Contemporary Romance, not suitable for people sensitive to grief, slavery, and nonconsensual sex. A story about finding love in the strangest of places, a will of iron that grows from necessity, and forgiveness that may not be enough.
“My life was complete. Happy, content, everything neat and perfect.
Then it all changed.
I was sold.”
Tess Snow has everything she ever wanted: one more semester before a career in property development, a loving boyfriend, and a future dazzling bright with possibility.
For their two year anniversary, Brax surprises Tess with a romantic trip to Mexico. Sandy beaches, delicious cocktails, and soul-connecting sex set the mood for a wonderful holiday. With a full heart, and looking forward to a passion filled week, Tess is on top of the world.
But lusty paradise is shattered.
Kidnapped. Drugged. Stolen. Tess is forced into a world full of darkness and terror.
Captive and alone with no savior, no lover, no faith, no future, Tess evolves from terrified girl to fierce fighter. But no matter her strength, it can’t save her from the horror of being sold.
Can Brax find Tess before she’s broken and ruined, or will Tess’s new owner change her life forever?
"Q was no longer the devil. He was my master and I belonged to him."
I had been looking forward to this story for a while, I had heard so many great things about Tears of Tess and couldn't wait to get stuck in.
The biggest warning I was given was this book was dark, it's not your average romance and rainbows and sunshine you will not find within these pages. To my surprise I was expecting Tears of Tess to be darker than what it was. I think I had imagined much worse after being warned, or perhaps my mind is just as twisted ;-) whatever the case Tears of Tess was an original entertaining read.
I'm not going to mention much of the plot other than what you can gleam from the synopsis. Tears of Tess sucks you into the world of human trafficking, some readers may be uncomfortable with the subject matter, what I can say is although it may be difficult to read about, it doesn't go as deep as it could so I would say if you are a bit hesitant of reading, you should definitely give it a try.
I really loved Tess from the start. I love strong heroines and they don't come much stronger than Tess. Sure some may view her as reckless, I even questioned my own actions if I were in the same abhorrent circumstances, my instinct would be to keep my head down and quiver in fear but not Tess, she fought at every turn. It was hard to read about the violence inflicted on Tess but that was due to me connecting with her and feeling protective, I wished her gone from the whole situation.
Now Q finally comes into the picture and he is portrayed as one character when in actual fact, we soon learn he is the complete opposite. Q is a dark character and he wants things with Tess that he has spent his whole life trying to eradicate from his soul. It took me a while to warm up to Q, even by the end of the story, I wasn't completely sold on him, book boyfriend material he was not, at least for me. That's just a personal reading quirk, when a couple come together under these circumstances, even though I can see a change, I find it hard to forget the origins. With that being said, for Tess' sake, I really wanted Q to be the one for her.
I really enjoyed Pepper Winters' writing. I was compelled to follow Tess' story and from the very first page I was in her corner praying she made it out of her living hell. Tears of Tess was a break from the contemporary romances I was overdosing in. It had suspense, an air of mystery, some WTH moments and surprisingly some very hot erotic scenes. There are some time jumps in the story and these were done well, at no time did I think elements were rushed or we missed out on important parts.
Tears of Tess will take you on a mind bending journey like no other, it can be hard to read at times and you will question whose side you are on but for me that all made for a very interesting and entertaining read and one you must check out today.
"My first tattoo and it demoted me from dog to shelf produce. A disposable thing. An item. No more. No less"
"They hadn't asked any personal information. They didn't care who I was. Only what I was becoming. Something to be sold."
"What did they see when they looked at me? A feral woman who signed her own death sentence, or a fierce warrior who saved herself...?"
"Two things I wanted most in the world: for Q to die a miserable death, and for him to fuck me."
"You may not be mine, but I'm fast becoming your." ~Q
"I finally found a place where my twistedness belonged. In Q's arms."
"I fully believed I was made for him and he was made for me. Two halves of the same fucked-upness. Two souls from the same twisted desires, unable to fully be free until we found each other."
"I promise to protect you, ravage you, hunt those who hurt you, and give you the life you deserve. My fortune is yours. My secrets are yours. And I will give you the corpses of the men who hurt you." ~Q
Pepper Winters wears many roles. Some of them include writer, reader, sometimes wife. She loves dark, taboo stories that twist with your head. The more tortured the hero, the better, and she constantly thinks up ways to break and fix her characters. Oh, and sex… her books have sex.
She loves to travel and has an amazing, fabulous hubby who puts up with her love affair with her book boyfriends.
Her debut book Tears of Tess will be followed with Quintessentially Q. You didn’t think Q could stop so soon, did you? Her other two titles, Last Shadow and Broken Chance will be coming soon.
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That One Summer is Book #3 in the mature young adult SUMMER SERIES, a series filled with intoxicatingly sweet romances and addictive, swoon worthy characters. The Summer Series is set in Onslow and it is here where you will meet the ruggedly handsome Onslow Boys - a group of men SO HOT in appearance and so likable in personality that’ll leave you craving MORE. Now imagine that, set it against a sizzling hot Australian background, fill it with good old Australian humour and there you have the Summer Series!
“Guess we better not muck around then.” Even in the night-time shadows I could tell that amusement lined his face; I could tell simply by the way the words had fallen off his tongue. They were tauntingly suggestive. If he thought it was funny to make me squirm under his penetrating stare, well, I wouldn’t give him the satisfaction.
I lifted my chin. “Keep dreaming, Henderson. I’m not skinny dipping,” I said proudly. “I don’t care how secluded this place is.”
The light of the moon illuminated the brilliant flash of Chris’s toothy smile. “More’s the pity,” he said. “To be honest, I’ll be amazed if you even get in.” He walked right up to the edge of the pool.
“Why wouldn’t I?” I said quickly.
Chris stretched his arms to the sky. “You just don’t strike me as a girl who gets out of her comfort zone much.”
My entire summer had been spent out of my comfort zone. This whole trip had been massively out of my comfort zone. But I had done it. Against all my better instincts, here I was. I had even been prepared to potentially do something last night with Chris that was completely out of character. I had wanted him to kiss me – everything in my body language had screamed as much at him. He would have to have been blind not to have understood that much last night, but he had known. Of course he had. Why else would he have spun around so fast other than to avoid me?
I felt not so much the burning of humiliation rising in me, but more the burning of anger.
He didn’t know anything about me. So what if I didn’t want to go skinny dipping? Just because I had some safety-related questions over the creepy, poorly lit, abandoned pool, I was a girl who never pushed the boundaries? That never went against the grain?
Fuck you, Chris Henderson.
My brows narrowed and all of a sudden I hoped that I was illuminated well enough that he’d see just how angry his statement had made me.
I pushed past Chris, my feet slapping angrily against the cool, wet concrete as I glanced out toward the massive pool.
“You don’t have to, you know,” Chris said, looking uncomfortable. “I just thought that it was kind of a cool place to bring you after a long trip.”
Oh, now he was trying to be nice and supportive?
Underneath the glow of the pool light, I stood close enough to count all the different shades of brown in his eyes, eyes that ticked across my face as if trying to solve the mysteries of the universe through me. Then they lit up, as if at that very moment he had realised what my determined, serious gaze meant.
“Tammy, wait …”
It was too late. In an act of defiance, as he reached out toward me, without a second thought I dived into the water.
"Chris Henderson kissed a girl for all to see and my heart swelled with absolute tenderness and joy, because that girl was me."
*I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.*
I previously enjoyed the first two books in the series and have come to love all the characters so I couldn't wait to get to know quiet, broody Chris Henderson better!
That One Summer can be read as a standalone, it is very much Chris and Tammy's story although you would have a better picture of the whole gang if you read the series from the beginning. I liked the fact this book was set away from Onslow as that is where the first two books have taken place and who doesn't love a road trip?
Chris has always been the older, more serious one of the 'Onslow Boys' and he would probably not even class himself as one of them. Having just taken on the Onslow hotel, Chris doesn't do anything just for fun, so the group agree to go away to celebrate New Year. With a little bit of meddling from friends it turns out Chris is left to drive his cousin Amy's friend Tammy. So it's just the two of them in the van, travelling for three days. It's either a recipe for disaster or fun!
I do like road trip stories, there are so many fun mishaps that often happen on the way. In this case it was a chance for Chris and Tammy to get to know each other. There was underlying attraction but they both had preconceived ideas about the other so it was great to see them each let their walls down. There were some really sweet moments when Chris looked after Tammy and went out of his way to make sure she had everything she needed. We got to see rare glimpses of Chris' sweeter side.
The romance element was low in this book. I don't mean the physical side, I don't mind if that is present or not but it was the actual chemistry between Chris and Tammy. I understand the pace was moving slow to build up a friendship first, but the sparks and butterflies were missing for me. Chris was depicted as moody and he played his part well. Usually you can get sexy moody alphas but in this case I felt Chris was just a plain grumpy guy. So I didn't get that swoon worthy book boyfriend vibe from him. This element of the story really lacked for me. At times it was more about the group of friends going on a road trip rather than the romance. Maybe that was the intention, I just always like romance to take the lead in the books I read.
That One Summer was a sweet tale of self discovery and acceptance. Tammy started off as a whiny and insecure girl but I was glad to see by the end her confidence had grown. There was plenty of drama to be had by this gang and a really sweet ending. For fans of the series this will be another great addition.
"Loving Chris Henderson would be wrong. I mean, what was there about him to love? He was moody, bossy, a control freak, and that was on a good day. But there was one achingly obvious fact that haunted my every thought, every minute of every day... the man sure could kiss."
C.J Duggan is the number one bestselling Australian author of the Summer Series! C.J lives with her husband in a rural border town of New South Wales, Australia. When she isn’t writing books about swoony boys and 90’s pop culture you will find her renovating her hundred-year-old Victorian homestead or annoying her local travel agent for a quote to escape the chaos.
Novels in the Summer Series includes: The Boys of Summer (2012), An Endless Summer (2013) and the highly anticipated That One Summer (2013).
For more on C.J and ‘The Summer Series’, visit www.cjdugganbooks.com
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"I would follow you anywhere Seven, anywhere."
*I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.*
I have loved all the characters from the Hers series so far and Kink the Halls was a lovely little Christmas Bonus with plenty of sexy times thrown in of course.
Star and Seven have a far from conventional family so Christmas time is all about the family they have created themselves. Star, Seven, Levi, Chrome, River and Paisley take the front in this novella and I really liked that we got to read a little from each point of view. There was plenty of laughs, sweet surprises and hot sex! Star and Seven have grown the most over the course of the books and their lives have changed dramatically but all for the better!
We were also introduced to Paisley, Star's younger sister who has a few secrets of her own. This was a great lead in for Paisley and River's story although they did move pretty fast and are established somewhat already. These couples sure don't like to take things slow but I look forward to their story nonetheless.
Kink the Halls is a sexy little novella, filled with some of the sweetest moments for this eclectic group and I can't wait to read what comes next for them.
Check out the rest of the series...
I am weak.
I am lonely.
I am a slut.
I am strong.
I am Dominant.
I am independent.
I am Seven James.
My entire life, no one has wanted me, and that was fine, because I sure as shit didn't need anyone else. Blah, Blah Blah, insert sad story here about negligent parents, and shitty siblings, and you have my life story in a nut shell. When my college boyfriend dumped me, it was just icing on the cake. Five years, and a booming career later I am here to collect my revenge.
That was until a delicious plaything walked into the kink club I frequent, and rocked my typically un-rockable world. Causing me to break the one rule I have lived by since Daniel Alexander walked out of my life, never have sex with the same person twice. Ever.
Warning!!!! Hers contains sexually explicit situations that may be uncomfortable for some. These include FF, FMF, and MFM interactions.
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Sex is all I have ever known.
It started at an early age, and never stopped.
Men, women, threesomes, foursomes, orgies. Fuck it, whatever goes.
Twenty eight years old and nothing to show for my life but a fat bank account, and an impressive porn catalogue; all featuring yours truly; Starburst Bloom.
I'm at a crossroads, and I have a choice to make. I choose salvation.
I choose life. I choose myself, for the first time ever.
I will find her. I will find the life I was forced to give up.
I just pray that he stays out of my way.
Finding Willow contains mature content and minor abuse scenes which may not be suitable for all readers.
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Dawn Robertson is a twenty-something indie erotic romance, and mother. She lives in sunny senior citizen packed Florida, where she wrangles her kids, and Pitbull puppy.
Dawn can normally be found swearing like a sailor, making late night drive-thru appearances, arguing with her kids (or being run over by their power wheels), reading a steamy romance while hiding in her bathroom, writing her little heart out on her laptop (or dragging her Macbook to the Genius bar praying they can save her latest work in progress), or sipping on a smoothie. She loves to hear from her fans, readers, and authors alike. Feel free to drop her a message.
Dawn rarely takes life seriously, so be sure to expect heavy sarcasm from her. She is also the life of the party, so be sure to meet up with her at one of the many author events she will be attending in the next couple months. Buy her a shot of whiskey, and she will love you for life.
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**I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review**
After reading (and loving) the first book in this series, Sempre, I was beyond excited to get my hands on Sempre: Redemption. And I have to say I loved this one almost as much as the first! Although I expected some drama and trouble, I was hoping to get a lot more of Haven and Carmine as a happy couple, and enjoying life a bit after all of the struggles and hardships they faced in the previous book... and that's definitely not what we get for most of this novel. This one had me bawling my eyes out in record time and I had a lump in my throat through almost the entire book. This continuation of Sempre is emotional, heartbreaking, and completely captivating-- such a page-turner for me.
Even though I had hoped for more of a happily ever after-- or even a tiny bit of one--- I loved that we got to see what life was like for Haven and Carmine after Haven gained her "freedom." This book was quite a role-reversal for the two main characters. In the first book, Haven is the one who can't make her own decisions and is forced to live her life a certain way, under other people's control... But now Carmine's life is no longer his own. Carmine makes the tough decision to let Haven go, so that she's free to truly enjoy her newfound freedom and live her life the way she wants. Although he goes about it in the wrong way-- again, taking a decision away from her instead of letting her decide for herself-- the love he shows for her is very heartwarming. He wants her to know true freedom, even if he has to sacrifice his own happiness to do so. We see a very different side of Carmine in this book. He's depressed, self-destructive, but determined to do right by Haven, even if it means he has to suffer.
Haven is such a strong character and one that is very easy to become attached to. She's strong, she's sweet and endearing, and she really steps up to the plate (eventually) and takes control of her life. After what's she's been through, that's incredible. Seeing these two characters attempt to live without each other for a time, struggling to endure their new lives while their heart is with the other-- surviving, but not living-- was heartbreaking.
Redemption-- the perfect word to describe the premise of this novel. We see many characters trying to right their wrongs and make amends. Corrado is a huge part of this story and I loved learning more about his life and what makes him tick. He really surprised me and I definitely grew to love him. In true Darhower fashion, there are tons of twists and turns, lots of surprises, and nail-biting action. I was anxious the entire time I read, waiting for the other shoe to drop-- because you KNOW something's coming, you just don't know when! Sempre: Redemption is a novel about pain, personal growth, heartache, and perseverance, finished perfectly with a lovely epilogue. I absolutely recommend this one!
Carmine sat in his usual chair in the library, casually strumming his guitar. A sliver of light filtered in from the large window, illuminating his somber expression in the darkness. She called his name but he remained still, continuing to pluck at the strings almost as if he hadn’t heard her. She took a step toward him and was about to say his name again when he let out a long, deep sigh. “I had a dream.”
“Another nightmare?” she asked, walking over to him. He glanced up at her as his fingers stilled, the music stopping, but Haven barely noticed. She couldn’t focus on anything but the green eyes boring into her. Once so alive
with passion, she saw nothing but deep sadness marring the bright color.
Carmine set the guitar aside and moved his legs to make room, motioning for her to join him. She climbed into his lap and he wrapped his arms around her.
“Not a nightmare this time,” he said. “It was a good dream.”
“What was it about?”
“You,” he said quietly. “You made a painting—some abstract shit, I don’t know—but it was so good they hung it in a museum and raved about how talented you were. It was like you were the next fucking Picasso, tesoro.”
She laughed. “I don’t even know how to paint, Carmine.”
“You could learn,” he said. “Would you want to?”
“Maybe, but I don’t know how good I’d be.”
“Oh, you’d be good,” he said confidently. “You shouldn’t doubt yourself. You can do anything you set your mind to.”
“Except for play the piano,” she said playfully. “Or the guitar.”
He chuckled. “Yeah, for the sake of everyone’s ears, we ought to leave music to me, but the rest is all you. You can probably do all of that, you know. Draw, paint, sculpt shit into weird shapes and tell people it’s something it doesn’t look anything like. That takes talent.”
She smiled. “And you think I have that kind of talent?”
“Of course,” he said. “There’s gonna be no stopping you once you get started.”
“Thank you,” she whispered, a swell of emotion surging through her at his words. “It means a lot that you believe in
“I’d be an idiot not to,” he said, kissing the top of her head.
JM Darhower is the author of countless stories and poems, most of which only she has ever read. She lives in a tiny town in rural North Carolina, where she churns out more words than will ever see the light of day. She has a deep
passion for politics and speaking out against human trafficking, and when she isn't writing (or fangirling about books) she's usually ranting about those things.
Chronic crimper with a vulgar mouth, she admits to having a Twitter addiction. You can usually always find her there.
Connect with JM:
Website / Facebook / Twitter
Tour information can be found at http://www.dianealberts.com/
I relaxed a little bit, but it didn’t feel right. Something was off, and I’d learned long ago to listen to my gut. If it said something was wrong, something was fucking wrong. “Yeah. Sure.”
She let go of me. “Now go get ready. I want to get out in the ocean.”
I headed for the bathroom, my phone still in my hand. As I brushed my teeth, I jotted off a quick text to Senator Wallington. Carrie’s okay. All is well.
Within a minute I had a reply. Thank you.
That was it. A thank you. There was nothing wrong with the text, per se. But it wasn’t right, damn it. I shook off the feeling that was bugging the fuck out of me, and focused on the date I’d promised Carrie. She had enough to stress about, what with that weird phone call I’d gotten that neither of us could make any sense out of, so I didn’t need to go obsessing about the tone of a text message like some pansy-assed little girl.
I leaned against the door, my eyes on my reflection. The nagging sensation that something was wrong wouldn’t let go. On top of that, I figured out what was bugging me from when we’d talked about our date. I stared at myself, all tattoos, dog tags, muscles, swim trunks and five-o-clock shadow—it hit me. The problem with her wanting a fancy date with flowers and dresses and jewelry and valet parking was I wasn’t fancy.
I could put on an expensive suit and pretend.
I could afford to be that guy, money-wise.
But underneath the suit and the charming smile, I was the tatted-up
Marine that had no place dating the daughter of a prospective President of the United States of America. She was supposed to be with a trust fund baby. One who had money and wealth and recognition.
Me? I so wasn’t that guy. I never would be.
*I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.*
After the cliffhanger ending of book one I needed to read this one, as I wanted to know about the phone call that Finn had received, and mainly because I wanted more Finn. ;)
Out of Time picks up where Out of Line ended, Carrie has forgiven Finn for not being honest with her, and they are very much in love. However, the phone call that Finn receives has now added to their worries, and they are still keeping their relationship a secret from everyone in order to protect Finn’s father’s retirement.
Finn and Carrie’s relationship is emotional, sweet, and very passionate. Finn is willing to do anything to make her happy even if it means changing. Carrie loves Finn, he is the only one for her it’s that simple. Carrie doesn’t want or need him to change, and she doesn’t care what her Father may say.
The storyline was definitely steamier and sexier that the last book. Finn and Carrie couldn’t get enough of each other. I loved the romance between the two. Told from Carrie and Finn's POV I was able to read how much they meant to each other, their fears about the phone call, and what it could mean for their future. I really did feel for them at times. I liked Finn’s POV, but I saw a different side to him. While I understood his insecurities and his doubts about not being good enough for Carrie, I wanted to shake him as I found him too negative at times.
Overall I liked this book, it was an easy read, but I felt that the first half of the book was too slow moving for me, and I found that I was getting frustrated at times as some things just took too long to be revealed.
I went into this book not knowing there was going to be a third book, so I must admit when I realised this a few colourful words left my mouth. I will be reading the third book in the series because even though I know that Finn and Carrie have some hurdles to face, and maybe heartbreak I want to see them get the happy ever after they deserve. Plus I still want more Finn.
“She really was the sun to me. The only thing that brought true brightness to my world”
“The fact that he thought he wasn’t good enough for me and my father made my throat tighten. Would I ever be able to convince him I loved him exactly how he was, not as a version of what he could be? That I didn’t want him to change at all?”
“She took my breath away with her beauty, and it would never cease to amaze me how much of an effect she had on me.”
“I will not leave you. And if you leave, I will always be here waiting for you when you get back. Whether it’s in a few days, a week, or a freaking year. I’ll be here. I’ll be yours.” ~ Carrie
“I love you. So damn much it scares the shit out of me. I’ve never been scared of anything before. Guns. Surfing. War. But now I have the biggest fear of all-losing you” ~ Finn
Jen McLaughlin is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. She writes steamy New Adult books for the young and young at heart. Her first release, Out of Line, came out September 2013. She also writes bestselling Contemporary Romance under the pen name Diane Alberts.Since receiving her first contract offer under the pen name Diane Alberts, she has yet to stop writing. She is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.
Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal clear water. She lives in Northeast Pennsylvania with her four kids, a husband, a schnauzer mutt, a cat, and a Senegal parrot. In the rare moments when she’s not writing, she can usually be found hunched over one knitting project or another. Her goal is to write so many well-crafted romance books that even a non-romance reader will know her name.
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Click to set
After a horrific breakup with her long time boyfriend, Brooklyn Caldwell is completely disenchanted with the notion of mingling with the opposite sex. Damon Williams had been everything she thought she wantedâ¦until he wasnât.
In an attempt to escape her heartbreaking past, Brooklyn seeks refuge in bustling Washington DC where she folds into the fast paced society unnoticedâ¦until she meets a young entrepreneur, Logan Colton.
Brooklyn is surprised to find that while she has been successful in keeping the opposite sex at bay, somehow she is defenseless against Loganâs confidence and charmâand it doesnât hurt that he is absurdly beautiful. While thrilled with Loganâs candor, Brooklyn hesitates, as she canât seem to move past the heartache that she suffered at the hands of Damon.
As much as Logan didnât plan on pursuing her, he is drawn to Brooklynâs muted beauty and her witty persona. For all his success, Logan is ensnared in the coveted world of unequivocal wealth and power, but behind closed doors is taunted by demons and an undeniable need to atone for a monumental mistake.
As the two embark on a tumultuous obstacle course saturated with unknown twists and turns, Brooklyn is left to question whether she can endure the journey ahead.
"I couldnât breathe. I saw her below me. I couldnât make out her face, but I knew she was someone close. Something was wrapped around her ankles, I thrust myself deeper into the darkness. The salty red water was all around me. Claps of thunder rang in my ears, but I plunged further into the bottomless abyss. Intense fear gripped my heart valve so tightly I thought it would burst, but I knew she needed me."
Meet The Author
Some of S.C. Ellingtonâs Favorite Things
Authorâs Favorite Bad Boy:
Authorâs Favorite Movies:
Love & Basketball
Authorâs Favorite Songs:
Way too many to name!
Have you always wanted to be a writer? Yes and no. I always enjoyed using my creativity. I found pleas-ure in writing short poems and things of that nature. For a while I considered medical school, then law school, but for me, those professions were more of a means to earn a substantial living. My father always told me to choose a profession that I didnât feel like would be "work." I ended up doing the opposite and pursued my Masters degree. From that point, I acquired a position within the government.
Over the course of the last few years, I found myself yearning for more. I would say that the day my husband brought me my Kindle, was the day that my life and outlook changed. I started thinking back on my fatherâs words and what I found joy in. Iâve always been an avid reader, and many close friends always told me that they thought I wrote well. About a year ago, a tiny light bulb went off, propelling me to pursue my creative pas-sion for writing. Had it not been for the ever evolving world of self-publishing, I am not sure that I would have ever seriously pursued my dreams of becoming a published author.
Have you ever suffered from "writers block"?
I had a few cases of this dreadful disease! I found that by leaving my work alone for a few days, ideas were able to flourish when I didnât put myself under pressure to spit out words.
Best advice for anyone starting out writing?
Well as a budding author myself, I canât stress enough the importance of networking. When I first approached the idea of writing a novel, I was mortified by the idea of social networking and meeting people face to face. Luckily I was able to meet a few great people early on who showed me the ropes of the author world. I think my exposure to them has made my author experience richer.
Is it harder to write a male or female character?
It is most definitely harder for me to write male characters. As a woman, it is so much easier for me to tune into what most women desire, complain about, or fear. Thankfully, my husband has been supportive and allows me to pick his brain to get male points of view.
What scenes are the hardest for you to write?
Oddly enough, as a new adult romance author, the hardest scenes for me to pull together are the actual love scenes. I struggle with the syntax of my word choice, where to stage the characters, and above all, keeping the scenes fiery.
If you could see the world through the eyes of one of your characters, which one would it be and why?
I would have to say I would like to experience the world through Loganâs eyes. Logan has had to deal with some hard blows. While everyone deals with adversity at some point, it would be nice to experience how he strives to move past it on a daily basis.
How do you know if your work is a short story or a novel in the making? What triggers that decision?
On some level, the characters speak to you. I find if they have a lot to say, then I continue to write. If theyâve, yelled, screamed, and made up in twenty pages, then I know they were only meant to be around for a season or two.
If you could bring one of your characters to life, who would you choose and why?
I would choose Brooklyn. Like Logan, Brooklyn has also dealt with tumultuous ups and downs in her life. Brooklyn has a fire about her, and I enjoy that. To see some of her crazy comments played out in real life would be comical.
Do your fans have any impact on your writing?
Certainly! As a budding author, youâre eager to hear what readers think of characters and the overall story line. What they liked and didnât like and so forth. SinceUnsettled is the first novel of a series, I would embrace things that my readers had to say to keep the thrill of the story going.
What is the best compliment you have received as an author?
The best compliment thus far was from a reader who messaged me and cried, "I was sad to see the story end."
If you had the chance to go on a date with one of your characters, who would it be?
I would love to hang out with Damon for a couple hours. Get some insight into what he was thinking! I donât think I could be his Mystic though!
What lies in your near future as an author?
I hope to pursue writing as a full-time career at some point. In the meantime, I look forward to interacting with my fans and continuing Logan and Brooklynâs story.
"He has become my air just as much as I’ve become his. I’m consumed completely, exposed, in love, and totally fine with all three of those things."
*I received an ARC for an honest review.*
Catch caught my eye from the synopsis. I like a bit of action with my romance and couldn't wait to get started. I also must mention the cover, it is absolutely perfect for the vision of Max and I found it to be striking.
From the very first page I loved Max. She was as feisty as heroines get and I like that in a female MC. It was Max's upbringing that made her into a tough nut but she could protect herself and could take anyone on. "I’m ready to kick him in the balls and then scratch her eyes out. Wait. I don’t scratch eyes out. I’m fucking Max Brady. I eat bitches like her for breakfast."
Max gets caught up in some serious business with her douche of a boss. Max takes something as leverage, not realising the danger she has now put herself in. A bounty is on her head and that is where handsome 'Catch' steps in. Catch is the number one assassin and always completes a job but his first mistake was to question Max's innocence and he soon comes to realise he must protect her rather than carry out the hit.
So Max and Catch go on the run whilst trying to prove Max's part in all of this, fend off the bad guys, answer to Catch's boss and keep themselves alive. Sounds easy right?
Max and Catch started out as mortal enemies. Max blamed Catch for holding her against her will and Catch was trying to prove to Max just how dangerous the situation was. The sexual chemistry was there from the beginning and yes they had more important things going on but I couldn't wait for them to get together. I love two broken souls mending the other! And lets not forget how hot Catch is!
“When we’re alone, just you and me, I’m not Catch. I’m Sage. When you moan my name, it’s Sage. When you whimper my name, it’s Sage. When you whisper and when you scream my name, it’s Sage,” he growls before claiming my mouth again."
The story was fast paced and I literally didn't want to put it down. I had to find out what was going to happen. Max's boss was closing in on them and my heart was in my mouth. I was worried as I neared the end as I thought a cliffhanger may appear and I would be frustrated but I was so pleased with the way things played out and it was the perfect ending.
This was my first book by S. Poirier and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The dual POV worked well and that is the sole reason I was able to fall in love with both characters. The story was action packed and kept me on the edge of my seat. It was a great switch up to the books I have been reading. It has action, suspense, romance and hot sexy times. What's not to love?!
The second book will be about Max's best friend June and one of Catch's acquaintances, Snitch. I really can't wait to read what they have in store.
I would recommend you 1-click Catch and let the sweet, sexy alpha charm you today!
"And no matter what is going through that pretty little head of hers I’m still not going to let anything happen to her. I care for her too much— no scratch that— I can’t breathe without her. If I lose her I will lose my fucking mind.
"When Max had gotten herself into trouble I always thought that she was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. I’ve now learned that sometimes that place can actually be exactly where you need to be for everything else in your life to fall into place."
Solange Poirier is married and lives in southern Louisiana. She have the utmost privilege of being the mom to a 6-year-old and a 2-year-old. They test her sanity on a daily basis. She loves to read and write. She also loves dogs, cats, flowers, wine, dirty martinis, chocolate, sushi, family, friends, tattooed men, rock music, rock stars, laughing, video games, horror films, and the list could go on and on.
She writes because she loves to create characters and make stuff up. She just hopes that the readers enjoy her stories as much as she enjoys writing them.
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Book One – Sapphire Universe
Rule #1 Do not ignore the signs.
Rule #2 Pay attention.
Rule #3 The less they know about you, the harder it is for them to hurt you.
Rule #4 Comfort is dangerous. It can be taken away.
Rule #5 Need is a handicap. It can cripple you.
Rule #6 He isn’t what he seems. Don’t trust him.
Simple rules made for a simple purpose. Nina Ryan learned early on in life that if you want to avoid being hurt, you need to be proactive. If you pay attention the Universe will always steer you in the right direction. It will help keep you safe. So, she follows the rules, and she is safe.
Until Connor Wright barges his way through all her carefully laid defenses and threatens to destroy the comfortable life she has created. Faithfully following her #1 rule, Nina tries to accept that the Universe has pushed Connor and her lives together for a purpose. Determined to make Nina his, Connor chips away at the walls Nina has placed around her heart and her secrets.
Is Nina following the signs that will lead her down the right path, or does Connor hold secrets of his own that will ruin Nina for good?
Only the Universe knows.
Recommended for 18+ only due to sexual content and mature situations.
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My hackles rise and I look him dead in the eyes and plant a finger in his chest. “What exactly do you want with her, Connor? Because these questions, they come with some heavy answers. Nina isn’t going to be easy or normal and it’s going to be rocky, so if she is just a challenge or some passing fling in a small town you’re visiting, you better just cut your losses now. I had no control over her being hurt the first time, and failed at protecting her the second, so I will not allow there to be a third. You get me?” I stab my finger deeper into his chest and glare up into his baby blues, putting every ounce of threat I can muster into my words.
“You don’t need to worry about that. I’m more likely to get hurt than she is at this point.” His words completely shock me. Guys don’t ever admit to things like that. “Now, I hate to be rude, but Nina is going to be out of the shower any minute now and I have some things to say to her when she does. If you’re here when she gets out, she’ll use you as an excuse to get out of facing whatever progress I made with her last night.”
I smile wide at him and pat him on the shoulder. “It’s about time that girl had someone to care about again.” I walk towards the door and turn around before exiting, to hammer the point home. “Connor, I like you, but if you hurt her, I will not hesitate to nail your balls to my fence post and leave you for the birds, understood?” Connor’s hand instinctively goes to protect the object in question and swallows.
“Like I said, unnecessary, but yea… I hear you. You know, you’re sort of scary.” I look up at the hulking man who outweighs me by at least seventy pounds and has a good eight inches on me and smile.
*I received an ARC copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*
I have been looking forward to reading this book. After first meeting Lola, Nina’s best friend, and Drake in the first book, Sapphire Universe I was pleased that they were getting their own book as by the end of Sapphire Universe I was left with some unanswered question about them and felt they had a story to tell.
From the first chapter, I remembered why I had loved Lola Chase. She had a funny, sassy, outspoken attitude and she was never afraid to say exactly what she was thinking. I liked Drake Thomas, and the fact he was a sexy cowboy even better, but he was stubborn and frustrating at times.
Both Lola and Drake have issues, they have family secrets, each as heartbreaking as the other, and understandably is the reason they both have their walls up, why they stay away from relationships and why they are afraid of letting anyone get too close.
Lola and Drake are a great couple, they work well together, the banter between them was great and so funny at times. From the moment these two first meet (which was very funny), you can feel the chemistry between them. I loved the friendship they had which started more as ‘friends with benefits’. Lola and Drake are very physical with each other, so there are plenty of hot, sexy moments. Let's just say Drake knows how to make a girl very happy ;)
I loved that it was told from both Lola and Drake’s POV as Devon does a great job of letting you get inside their heads, you see Lola’s insecurities and Drakes fears. I loved watching that, as much as Lola and Drake try to keep the relationship purely physical, it turns into something more. As they slowly get to know each other they can’t deny the emotions that they start to feel, and walls start to crumble.
The storyline was heartwarming and heartbreaking. After reading the prologue and discovering what happened to Drake in his past, my heart went out to him. Devon Herrera doesn’t fail to deliver on the romance, the emotions, the sexiness, the suspense, and the surprises, many reasons I didn’t want to put this book down.
Overall, like the first book, I really enjoyed this story it was a quick read. I like Devon’s writing style; it’s engaging from the start, and Devon has a way of bringing the characters to life. I liked the epilogue, but I wished it had been longer I needed an extra page or two to be completely satisfied.
I loved, like Sapphire Universe, Devon puts quotes at the start of each chapter, and I was so pleased that Devon did it again in this book, as you know I love my quotes, and Devon had so many good ones.
I would recommend this book, but I do think you should read Nina and Connor’s story in Sapphire Universe first as although Lola and Drake’s story is separate it happens at the same time. I read Sapphire Universe a while ago and I found that I wanted to go back to it to recap on parts.
“Calm, cool, sexually confident Lo has officially left the building, and drooling, incoherent and sexually deprived Lola has taken her place.”
“I didn't think I could possibly deserve a woman like you. I still don't, but I’m too fucking selfish to give a shit.”
“My skin flames under his touch and the air I was taking in gets stuck in my skin”
“Love is never black and white. People are never wrong or right. It’s all about choices.” ~Connor
“You don’t know me, because if you did you would run far away from me, but I never said I didn’t care.” ~Drake
“I let go with him in a way I’ve never done with any other man I’ve been with. He makes me laugh, he makes me angrier than any other person in the entire world, and I don’t know what I would without him”
“Drake laughs and I melt. Having someone make you melt when you’re supposed to be angry with them is major”
“Love is not a product of reasonings and statistics. It just comes-none knows whence-and cannot explain itself” ~ Eve’s Diary.
“The frankest and freest product of the human mind and heart is a love letter” ~Mark Twain
I am a wife of a U.S Army Soldier and mother of a beautiful little girl. I work for the Wyoming Department of Revenue in Cheyenne Wyoming, and no we don't still ride horses out here. I've been in love with reading since I first discovered the Harry Potter series in 4th grade. I don't just read a good book I devour it. After reading hundreds of novels I finally bit the bullet and sat down to write one of my own. I had an idea in my head and as soon as I started writing, the story seemed to play out right infront of me. Nothing has ever felt so natural. About 10 chapters into it I decided that I was going to take the plunge and get it self published as an Ebook. "Sapphire Universe" is a Contemporary Romance novel for adults, because lets face it, I'm female. Romance is what I like to read so it's what I'm going to write. Thank you so much for your support, and I can't wait for you to read The Universe Series.
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