Thursday, November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving ~ Gratitude Raffle



Happy Thanksgiving!! 

I'm so very grateful for each and every one of you and I wanted y'all to know it, so I decided to have a raffle to show my gratitude. I have two mystery boxes of books and swag up for grabs. Simply fill out the rafflecopter below. 

I'm sorry but due to shipping costs, this raffle is for U.S. residents only. International peeps don't despair. I'll be hosting a few more giveaways in the next few months and you'll be included in those!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, November 20, 2017

Review ~ Law Man ~ Kristen Ashley #ShelfLove

Law Man (Dream Man, #3)Law Man by Kristen Ashley
Dream Man #3
Release Date: December 11, 2012
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Source: Purchased on Nook
Rating: 5 Bookworms
Challenges: #COYER (summer), #ShelfLove
Goodreads

Synopsis
Love is just around the corner...

Sweet, shy Mara Hanover is in love with her neighbor. For four years, she has secretly watched her dream man from afar. Handsome police detective Mitch Lawson is way out of her league. She's a girl from the wrong side of the tracks, and there's no way a guy like Mitch would want anything to do with her. But when Mara has a leaky faucet that she can't fix, it's Mitch who comes to her rescue.

Mitch has been eyeing his beautiful neighbor for a long time. He jumps at the chance to help her, and soon their formerly plantonic relationship gets very hot and heavy. But when Mara gets a disturbing phone call from her cousin's kids, she gets pulled back into the life she's tried so hard to leave behind. Can the hot law man convince Mara to let go of her past- and built a future with him?



I am officially in love with Mitch Lawson and since he has to have a leading lady other than me *wink* I couldn't ask for a better on e than Mara.

There really isn't anything that didn't work for me in this Dream Man installment but here are the main things that soooo did:

  • Mara - I completely identified with and related to her. I understood her rating system (she considers herself a 2.5 to Mitch's 10.5) and where it came from. I understood why her self-esteem was essentially non-existent and why she lived her life the way she did. I also really loved watching her blossom, come into her own, and realize she actually was a 10.5!
  • Mitch - God! Mitch. What's not to like about this man? I'd liken him to Hank (Rock Chick Redemption) on the alpha scale as well as being a family guy. And he said this one thing that I think is one of the greatest quotes about feelings when first laying eyes on a person... "I think I fell in love with the promise of you..."  *swoon*
  • Billy and Billie - you'll have to read to understand and I dare you not to fall in love with these two kids. They are ADORABLE. And I like that KA can incorporate kids in a story where they have a crucial roles.
  • The secondary cast - as always, a total draw! KA never underestimates or undervalues the importance of having good people around you...family and friends. Elvira is a character I can't get enough of and so I'm sad the Dream Man series is almost at its end.
  • The suspense - what can I say? KA gives good suspense...right along with good alpha *wink*


Thursday, November 16, 2017

Release Day Review ~ Scandalous Beat ~ Michelle Mankin (@MichelleMankin) #2017NewRelease

Scandalous Beat (Tempest, #6; Black Cat Records, #9)Scandalous Beat by Michelle Mankin
Tempest #6
Release Date: November 16, 2017
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Source: Purchased on Kindle but I also had the pleasure of being a beta reader as well. This in no way affected my rating and my review is voluntarily provided.
Rating: 5 Bookworms
Challenges: #2017NewRelease
Goodreads ~ Amazon

Synopsis
A rock star. A stripper. Can a hookup lead to a happily ever after?

Juaquin Acenado.
A drummer. A rapper. A rock king.
My brother's best friend.
Arrogant. Forbidden.. Do-not-go-there-trouble.
The sexy Latino was too old for me when we first met and I was in high school. But he was my first love. I've never gotten over him.

Miriam Jackson
Stripper. Exotic dancer. Her stage name is Queen.
My bandmate's little sister.
Spicy and sweet. The spark that fires my inspiration. The rhythm to my beat.
She's the one I imagine when I settle for the others. My ultimate fantasy. Only I can never have her.
Until I arrive in Vegas to record my solo rap album, visit a strip club, and there she is. Miriam was supposed to be in college, but she's not. She is so not.
Sin City, a place where anything can happen, and I'm the only one in the band who knows her secret.
So why resist anymore?
Who could possibly stop me?


Ah the Tempting Men of Tempest...I'm so sad to see this series come to an end but I'm been eager to finally get King's story, to see who stole his heart. Scandalous Beat was the perfect way to round out one of my favorite Rock Star series.

Highlights

  • Characters
    In Miriam, we have a young woman who had a difficult childhood suffering from dyslexia and verbal abuse. She found solace in acting. She's such a sweetheart. Selfless, loyal, and caring...she puts others' needs and feelings before her own.
    In Juaquin, we have a talented young man who also grew up in hardship. He lost his brother to gang violence and has dealt with anger management issues for most of his life. He's loyal and caring but finds it difficult to deal with his emotions.
    These two together were always magic. They met when Miriam was too young but they shared a special connection, were kindred souls. But even once Miriam was of age, Juaquin felt himself unworthy of her attention, plus being the little sister of his bandmate automatically put her on the "off-limits" list.
  • Forbidden Romance
    This was a trope that really worked in this case. Not only was there the age difference and the bandmate connection, but Miriam served as Beauty to Juaquin's Beast. There were all the reasons in the world for them to be apart but fate seemed to bring them together.
  • The Journey
    Yes, there were obstacles against them...age, etc., but the biggest obstacle was not knowing themselves. Juaquin, in his desire for Miriam to have better than him, unwittingly hurt her over and over again. Miriam, in her desire to have him, lost herself. When they are thrown into each other's paths once again, without the reminder of the original obstacles, they both journey towards finding themselves, realizing their true worth as well as their feelings for each other. As Miriam said, "[Love is] about becoming something better because you're together. Transforming each other's weaknesses into strengths. Making something beautiful together."
  • Relevant Issues
    This is a specialty of Mankin's, bringing awareness to social issues. Scandalous Beat was no exception. There were a couple of topics touched on including abuse and dyslexia but the main point I felt Mankin was trying to make was having the courage to ask for help when you need it. The way in which she conveyed Miriam's courage in getting the help she needed was brilliant as well as how she parlayed it into a way to help others.
  • Emotion
    Mankin is adept at evoking strong emotions. The push and pull between Miriam and Juaquin kept me on edge, alternately cheering, steaming, or crying. The depth of feeling between these two was something special.
  • Secondary Cast
    The secondary cast was a strength - not only because I got to spend time with some of the other Tempest couples but I also got to know Miriam's best friend, Mike. Mike is well developed and added complexity and depth to Miriam as well as the story. Mankin also skillfully tied in people and plot lines from earlier stories.

Scandalous Beat delivered characters that are genuine, a compelling story, and the full range of emotions as well as some smoking smexy scenes. It was the perfect way to "crown" this series.


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Audio Review ~ American Prince ~ Sierra Simone #2017NewRelease #AudioChallenge

American Prince (New Camelot Trilogy, #2)American Prince by Sierra Simone
New Camelot Trilogy #2
Narrated byStephanie Rose and Guy Locke
Release Date: June 27, 2017
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance
Source: I received a complimentary copy from Tantor Audio. This did not affect my rating and my review is voluntarily provided. 
Rating: 4.5 Bookworms
Challenges: #2017NewReleasee, #AudioChallenge
Goodreads

Synopsis
I've been many things.

I've been a son and a stepbrother. An Army captain and a Vice President.

But only with Him and I a prince. His little prince.

Only with Maxen and Greer does my world make sense, only between them can I find peace from the demons that haunt me. But men like me aren't made to be happy. We don't deserve it. And I should have known a love as sharp as ours could cut both ways.

My name is Embry Moore and I serve at the pleasure of the President of the United States...for now.

This is the story of an American Prince.



I started listening to American Prince immediately after finishing American Queen and found myself swallowed by Greer, Ash, and Embry once again.

American Prince is told mostly from Embry's POV and once again, Simone delivered the story via past and present timelines. This format was an excellent way to get Embry and Ash's backstory and their history was gut-wrenching, heartwarming, and riveting. The present timeline was also suspense-filled with Ash, Embry, and Greer dealing with the fallout over the consequences from the event that ended American Queen. The way Simone handled that was so well done and felt authentic. The feelings and emotions of Embry, Ash, and Greer as well as the public backlash over what was leaked - it all felt so real. The political intrigue and conniving and plotting against the trio kept me tied in knots as well. Especially considering who was behind most of it. Once again, I was shocked at how much emotion - HATRED - Simone made me feel towards a certain character.

And then...and then...AND THEN! I absolutely could not believe the choices Embry made and the repercussions from those choices. These choices and their repercussions impacted the rest of the book and even with all the revelations made at the end of the book, I'm still reeling. STILL. Seriously.

Needless to say, I pre-ordered American King in ebook format because I couldn't wait for audio...BECAUSE I HAVE TO KNOW HOW IT ALL ENDS!!! (I'm currently reading it)

The narrators, Stephanie Rose and Guy Locke, did well for the most part. Locke's range seemed limited and he did have some inconsistencies with pronunciations which bothered me but I enjoyed Rose's delivery once again.



Monday, November 13, 2017

Review ~ Master of the Mountain ~ Cherise Sinclair

Master of the Mountain (Mountain Masters & Dark Haven, #1)Master of the Mountain by Cherise Sinclair
Mountain Masters and Dark Haven #1
Release Date: August 8, 2014
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance, D/s
Source: Gift
Rating: 4.5 Bookworms
Challenges: #COYER
Goodreads

Synopsis
When Rebecca's lover talks her into a mountain lodge vacation with his swing club, she soon learns she's not cut out for playing musical beds. But with her boyfriend "entertaining" in their cabin, she has nowhere to sleep. Logan, the lodge owner, finds her freezing on the porch. After hauling her inside, he warms her in his own bed, and there the experienced Dominant discovers that Rebecca might not be a swinger...but she is definitely a submissive.

Rebecca knows that no one can love her plump, scarred body. But, to her surprise, Logan disagrees and is quite happy to show her just how much he enjoys her curves. Under his skilled hands, Rebecca loses not only her inhibitions, but also her heart.

Damaged from the war, Logan considers himself too dangerous to be around the enticing little sub. He sends her away for her own safety, not realizing she thinks she's been rejected because of her size. When Logan's mountains echo with her voice long after she's gone, he knows she's left behind part of herself--and taken his heart. But when he arrives in the city to reclaim her, Rebecca's phone has been disconnected and her apartment is empty...


Rebecca finds herself at a lodge in the mountains with her lover, Matt. He talked her into accompanying him on this getaway - introducing her to his swinging lifestyle - because both he and she realize there's something missing in their sex life. While Matt's lifestyle isn't the "thing" Rebecca is looking for, she definitely finds that "thing" and then some on this retreat.

Logan is a veteran and he suffers excruciating nightmares from his experiences. Therefore, he spends his time running the lodge with his brother - not daring to attempt a relationship with anyone much less a woman. But Rebecca intrigues him. He can't figure out why she came on the swinging retreat and the more he gets to know her the more he starts rethinking his ban on commitment.

This is the second book from Sinclair I've read and I admit to enjoying this one even more than the first. I related to Rebecca on a deeper level - her self-image issues and the hurt left by cutting remarks from those who are supposed to love you. Seeing her blossom not only under Logan's care, but also out in nature as it kindled and rekindled her artist's heart, was inspiring and heartwarming. Watching Logan's carefully constructed walls crumble was rather fun, too. Rebecca brought out the nurturing part of his personality. Yes, a Dominant can be - is probably always - nurturing. He was such a compassionate and gentle man. I fell for him right along with Rebecca.

The thing was, both Logan and Rebecca had built fortresses around themselves. They both had fears about being hurt or hurting someone. So it was a beautiful thing to witness these two souls - who were perfect for each other - come together, overcome those fears, heal the hurts, learn more about themselves, and find true happiness.

I'm eager to continue this series! 

Saturday, November 11, 2017

My TBR List ~ November ~ And the Winner is... #MyTBRList

MyTBRList

My To-Be Read List is a meme hosted by Michelle @Because Reading. I think it's a fabulous idea because it gets y'all in the game and it helps me knock off some of the many, many books on my TBR list. You're more than welcome to join in the fun! I've included the basic rules below but you can click on the graphic above to hop over to Michelle's site where you can find all the details. 

Here's how it works:
On the first Saturday of each month, I will make a post with three books from my TBR List (these books can be already on your ereader or bookshelf OR books you might want to purchase) and add your link on the linky that will be provided on Michelle's post. Y'ALL will help me choose which book I will read next. The following Saturday, I will announce which book won. Then the last Saturday of the month, I'll post my review.

Fun, right?!?


***

I'm continuing my quest, and working at one of my Bookish Resolutions to catch up on series (since I'm behind in 148 series) I'm once again having y'all decide which series I'm going to work at catching up on this month! :D

FYI, this will be my theme all year. And since I'm letting random.org choose from the list of series I'm behind in, you might see books show up more than once. ;)


And the Winner is...

Fair Game (Alpha & Omega, #3)
Fair Game
Alpha and Omega #3

Synopsis
It is said that opposites attract. And in the case of werewolves Anna Latham and Charles Cornick, they mate. The son-and enforcer-of the leader of the North American werewolves, Charles is a dominant Alpha, while Anna, an Omega, has the rare ability to calm others of her kind.

When the FBI requests the pack's help on a local serial-killer case, Charles and Anna are sent to Boston to join the investigation. It soon becomes clear that someone is targeting the preternatural. And now Anna and Charles have put themselves right in the killer's sights...



This one won hands down, y'all! Thanks so much for voting! :)

Friday, November 10, 2017

Review ~ Forsaken ~ Lisa Renee Jones #COYER #TravelingtotheTerminus

Forsaken (The Secret Life of Amy Bensen, #3)Forsaken by Lisa Renee Jones
The Secret Life of Amy Benson #3
Release Date: August 18, 2015
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense
Source: Library
Rating: 4.5 Bookworms
Challenges: #COYER
Goodreads

Synopsis
In this third book in the sexy, suspenseful "The Secret Life of Amy Bensen" series from New York Times bestselling author Lisa Renee Jones, we meet Amy's brother Chad--and the woman who either loves him or wants him dead.

Six years ago, Chad's hunt for a dangerous treasure turned deadly when his family home was set on fire, his parents killed. Faking his and his sister Amy's death to protect her from further retaliation, he set her up in a new life with a friend's help, letting her believe he'd died.

But now the men who hired Chad to find the treasure have found him, imprisoning and torturing him to learn where it's hidden. A dark-haired beauty named Gia helps him escape, promising him access to his worst enemy. And as he tries to unravel the deep secrets of the past, he starts falling for her...only to discover she's not what she seems.

Unable to trust anyone, Chad focuses on only two things: protecting his sister Amy and getting revenge. Is love even possible in the midst of heartache?


I admit I was worried going into this installment because of the POV change. I needn't have worried though. LRJ pulled me right into the story with a tight grip on my throat.

Forsaken stars Chad, Amy's brother, whom Amy believed was dead. When we meet him, he's being held captive by the very people who've been hunting Amy. Chad may or may not have something these bad people want very badly. He's resigned himself to dying when help arrives in the form of one gorgeous woman.

I quite enjoyed the action and suspense of Forsaken. It was a thrill ride not knowing whom Chad could trust, the revelations of all that'd happened to lead up to Amy's having to be on the run, what'd happened since, and how Gia, Chad's savior, fit into it all.

That LRJ could make me root for Chad after the things he'd gotten into was something but I realized at some point that he'd been just a kid really and had gotten in over his head. Gia, I adored. She's smart, witty, and it was exciting to watch her, as well as Chad, put pieces of the puzzle together and find a way to keep everyone safe.

Forsaken was a thrilling ending to the The Secret Life of Amy Bensen series. I know there's still a novella to read though and I'll make haste in getting to it. :)

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Audio Review ~ American Queen ~ Sierra Simone #2017NewRelease #AudioChallenge

American Queen (American Queen Trilogy, #1)American Queen by Sierra Simone
New Camelot Trilogy #1
Narrated byStephanie Rose
Release Date: April 30, 2017
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance
Source: I received a complimentary copy from Tantor Audio. This did not affect my rating and my review is voluntarily provided. 
Rating: 4.5 Bookworms
Challenges: #2017NewReleasee, #AudioChallenge
Goodreads

Synopsis
It starts with a stolen kiss under an English sky, and it ends with a walk down the aisle. It starts with the President sending his best friend to woo me on his behalf, and it ends with my heart split in two. It starts with buried secrets and dangerous desires...and ends with the three of us bound together with a hateful love sharper than any barbed wire.

My name is Greer Galloway, and I serve at the pleasure of the President of the United States.

This is the story of an American Queen.


First thing, I want to give a BIG thank you to an author who shall go unnamed (*cough* Jana Aston *cough*) for waxing poetic about this book to the point where I almost immediately went and dug it out of the pile of audiobooks I have hiding. Jana, you were so right!

Oh my! What to say about this book. Captivating. Stunning. Compelling. I started this book after Ms. Aston discussed, on her Facebook page, how affected she was by it. I don't typically listen to audiobooks very quickly but American Queen? I finished it in two days! Yeah.

Highlights

  • Political Drama
    Greer Galloway is the granddaughter of a former Vice President. She grew up around politics, even being used by her grandpa as a spy of sorts. She's beautiful, intelligent, reserved, and reads people well. All qualities that serve nicely in politics.
    Maxen "Ash" Colchester grew up to become a war hero and eventually the President. He's compassionate yet demanding, brave, skilled on a battlefield and a congressional floor.
    Greer and Ash met when Greer was only sixteen. The meeting made quite an impression and neither forgot the other. Ten years later, Ash re-enters Greer's life and what follows is one effed up fairytale.
  • Characters
    The main characters, Greer, Ash, and Embry, are all so well drawn and charismatic. I rather hung on every word any of them said. Greer is a strong, independent, and very intelligent woman who has shunned romantic entanglements after essentially having her heart broken twice. Ash is a widower, having lost his wife very young. He's a force to reckon with in his position and he's set his sights on Greer. Embry was a fellow officer in the military and fought alongside Ash, is Ash's best friend, and is the Vice President. Both men are handsome but Embry is a bit softer than Ash. The secondary cast is well developed as well. What would a political drama be without conniving, calculating cousins, sisters, and political advisors as well as heads of state conspiring against you?
  • Format
    The way Simone doled out information about the past and present kept me riveted as I learned more about the characters, who they could and couldn't trust, what they wanted from each other, and how they'd all become involved in each others' lives.
  • Layers
    Not only is this a political drama, it's also a romance - an erotic romance at that - plus it incorporates suspense via political intrigue. Simone adeptly wove it all together to create a story I was loathe to press "stop" on.
The narration was also well done. Stephanie Rose has a nice range and did well with both male and female voices as well as creating accents for certain characters. She's a new-to-me narrator but one I won't hesitate to listen to again.

I started American Prince, the second installment, immediately. :)



Tuesday, November 7, 2017

New Release Review ~ Right Where We Belong ~ Brenda Novak (@BrendaNovak) #2017NewRelease

Right Where We Belong (Silver Springs, #4)Right Where We Belong by Brenda Novak
Silver Springs #4
Release Date: October 31, 2017
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the author. This did not affect my rating and my review is provided voluntarily.
Rating: 4 Bookworms
Challenges: #2017NewRelease
Goodreads

Synopsis
New York Times bestselling author Brenda Novak returns to Silver Springs with a moving story about rebuilding your life when you've got nothing left to lose.

Savanna Gray needs a do-over. Her "perfect" life unraveled when, to her absolute shock, her husband was arrested for attacking three women. With her divorce settled, she takes her two children home to Silver Springs to seek refuge between the walls of the farmhouse where she was born. It needs a little TLC, but she's eager to take control of something.

Gavin Turner understands the struggle of starting over. Abandoned at a gas station when he was five, it wasn't until he landed at New Horizons Boys Ranch as a teen that he finally found some peace. He steps up when Savanna needs help fixing things--even when those things go beyond the farmhouse.

Despite an escalating attraction to Gavin, Savanna resolves to keep her distance. She trusted her ex, who had a similarly tragic background, and is unwilling to repeat her past mistakes. But it's hard to resist a man whose heart is as capable as his hands.



It was so nice to sit down with my friends in Silver Springs. Not only did I get better acquainted with Gavin, I was introduced to a new neighbor in Savanna as well as getting to spend a little time with Eli and Aiyana. A treat all around. 

Gavin came to New Horizons via a wretched childhood where his father allowed his stepmother to abandon and beat him. His foster family wasn't much of an improvement. But Aiyana Turner gave him the love he needed to overcome all that and find some peace. So it was disheartening that someone he was somewhat involved with would take advantage of his past to affect his future. Especially when he'd only just met Savanna.

Savanna came to Silver Springs to escape a very ugly and public set of circumstances. She's closed the door on that part of her life but meeting Gavin wasn't part of her plan.

Both Gavin and Savanna have every reason to be commitment-phobic, particularly Savanna. Imagine finding out the person you've shared your life with, had children with, was capable of such violence. But there was something between them that immediately clicked. They tried to talk themselves out of starting anything but it seemed fated. All they had going on individually though would have made most mortals run in the opposite direction so it was testament to their strong connection that they "stuck".

I loved watching Gavin and Savanna together. They had some great moments of fun banter as well as some serious romance. Gavin's honesty was refreshing as was Savanna's actually. Neither seemed averse to telling the other how they felt even if they did, on occasion, leave out a few details for the other's protection. The villainous supporting cast was very well done. I honestly couldn't stand any of them and that Novak developed them well enough to evoke such strong negative emotion says a lot. On the flip side, watching Eli and Aiyana conspire together in matchmaking efforts was fun and seeing Savanna and Gavin with Savanna's kids was heartwarming.

The only drawbacks were due to a few places where my suspension of disbelief was stretched a bit. Otherwise, Novak delivered a well-crafted story with characters so well drawn I both loved some and hated some. I'll be looking forward to my next visit in Silver Springs.


Saturday, November 4, 2017

My TBR List ~ November ~ Polling is Open!

MyTBRList

My To-Be Read List is a meme hosted by Michelle @Because Reading. I think it's a fabulous idea because it gets y'all in the game and it helps me knock off some of the many, many books on my TBR list. You're more than welcome to join in the fun! I've included the basic rules below but you can click on the graphic above to hop over to Michelle's site where you can find all the details. 

Here's how it works:
On the first Saturday of each month, I will make a post with three books from my TBR List (these books can be already on your ereader or bookshelf OR books you might want to purchase) and add your link on the linky that will be provided on Michelle's post. Y'ALL will help me choose which book I will read next. The following Saturday, I will announce which book won. Then the last Saturday of the month, I'll post my review.

Fun, right?!?


***

I'm continuing my quest, and working at one of my Bookish Resolutions to catch up on series (since I'm behind in 148 series) I'm once again having y'all decide which series I'm going to work at catching up on this month! :D

FYI, this will be my theme all year. And since I'm letting random.org choose from the list of series I'm behind in, you might see books show up more than once. ;)


Your Choices Are:

Fair Game (Alpha & Omega, #3)
Fair Game
Alpha and Omega #3

Synopsis
It is said that opposites attract. And in the case of werewolves Anna Latham and Charles Cornick, they mate. The son-and enforcer-of the leader of the North American werewolves, Charles is a dominant Alpha, while Anna, an Omega, has the rare ability to calm others of her kind.

When the FBI requests the pack's help on a local serial-killer case, Charles and Anna are sent to Boston to join the investigation. It soon becomes clear that someone is targeting the preternatural. And now Anna and Charles have put themselves right in the killer's sights...





Epilogue (The Dark Duet, #3)Epilogue
The Dark Duet #3

Synopsis

I'm writing this because you begged. You know how I love the begging. In fact, you probably know too many things and know them far too well. Who am I? Well, that's what I'm trying to figure out. I was a whore in my youth, a killer since my adolescence, and a monster as a man. I am the man who kidnapped Livvie. I am the man who held her in a dark room for weeks. But, most importantly, I am the man she loves. She loves me. It's quite sick, isn't it? Of course, there's more to our story than can be surmised in a few short sentences, but I'm at a loss for justifying my behavior back then. I assume if you're reading this, I don't need to make those justifications. You've already made your own. You're reading this because you want to know about the rest of the story. You want to know what happened that warm summer night in September of 2010, the night I met Livvie at The Paseo. It was the night my life changed all over again. It didn't happen exactly as Livvie said. She's been very kind to me in the retelling of our story. The truth is far more...complicated.




Master of the Abyss (Mountain Masters & Dark Haven, #3)Master of the Abyss
Mountain Masters #2

Synopsis
On the mountain, the watcher seeks out evil women. And then they die.

Two years ago, when Jake Hunt uncollared his slave, she committed suicide. Guilt-ridden, he will commit to a woman for one night only, devoting his energy to a mountain lodge that caters to a BDSM crowd.

Kallie Masterson is tough. Unwanted as a child, she worked hard to become a wilderness guide. She's proud of who she is, and hurt that Jake frowns on her for acting like a man.

After rescuing the macho guide from a bar fight, Jake is stunned that the ugly men's clothing hides a warm, responsive woman. A submissive woman. When guide business brings her to the lodge on BDSM night, and she is obviously aroused by the play, Jake takes the little sub right into his world of pain and pleasure. He warns her: one-night-only. But she responds so beautifully--so joyously--under his command, that one night soon becomes two, then three...

Meanwhile, the watcher on the mountain has rendered his verdict: Kallie Masterson is evil. The sentence: Death.




Okay, now vote! And thanks! :D


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Friday, November 3, 2017

New Release Review ~ Little Secrets: Holiday Baby Bombshell ~ Karen Booth (@karenbbooth, @DesireEditors) #2017NewRelease

Little Secrets: Holiday Baby Bombshell (Little Secrets #5)Little Secrets: Holiday Baby Bombshell by Karen Booth
The Locke Legacy #2
Release Date: November 1, 2017
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the author. This does not affect my opinion or rating. I voluntarily provided a review. 
Rating: 4 Bookworms
Challenges: #2017NewRelease
Goodreads

Synopsis
From Rivalry to Revelry...to Romance?

Competitive swimmer turned real estate magnate Michael Kelly is tastier than a Christmas cookie. But now Charlotte Locke's sexy former lover is her top business rival...and the father of her unborn child. Determined to keep her professional cool, the hotel heiress hides her delicate condition from her family--and from her commitment phobic ex. Until Michael moves in next door, exposing a desire left unquenched and Charlotte's pregnancy secret.

Michael may not be daddy material, but losing Charlotte and their baby isn't an option. He'll close the deal at any cost--even if it takes a Christmas miracle to prove this playboy is reformed for good!



Karen Booth delivered yet another delight continuing her reign on my list of guilty pleasure reading. I was eager for the continuation of the Locke Legacy series having enjoyed Sawyer's story so well and having met his siblings, Charlotte and Noah. The surprise baby trope is well-played in Holiday Baby Bombshell. :)

Highlights

  • Characters
    Both Charlotte and Michael have pasts that greatly impact how they approach relationships. Despite Michael feeling that Charlotte was "different" than anyone who came before her, he was determined not to commit. Charlotte's approach was rather opposite. What I appreciated about their second chance is that they each discovered a few things about themselves along the way. They showed emotional growth and that set them on a path to being able to work things out.
  • Setting
    NYC at the holidays was a brilliant backdrop. Add to that Sawyer and Kendall's wedding at The Grand Hotel? I adored feeling like I was alternately walking the streets of Manhattan, walking along the Hudson, or through the lobby or hallways of the hotel. Booth brought the location to life.
  • The Competition
    The race between Charlotte and Michael to sell apartments in the hotel was a fun element. It clearly brought out the competitive sides of both. They were each kinda ruthless in what they wanted. Luckily, despite things not going to plan, they both achieved their goal.
My only complaint is the length. With a few extra pages the resolutions could have felt more solid. But overall, I was pleased and I'm anxious for Noah's story as well as crossing my fingers for Chris' (Michael's brother) story.




Thursday, November 2, 2017

That's What HE Said #77 ~ Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts #69 ~ Ride Steady ~ Kristen Ashley



That's What He Said is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely ladies @Chapter Break. Here's the deal: every Thursday, post a line from your book boyfriend to his heroine. Keep in mind, these are direct quotes from dialog in the books. The quote doesn't have to be romantic - just something our hunky hero said to his lucky lady. Be sure to link up over at Chapter Break as well.


My pick this week for That's What He Said is from:

Ride Steady by Kristen Ashley
I re-read Joker and Carissa's story in my quest for reading KA's books in the order she recommends. I loved them just as much as I did the first time. Maybe more. :)

***


"I don't know where this will lead," he stated. "You and me and your boy. I know what we got. I know I like what we got. I know I wanna keep that strong and make it stronger. Shit happens. I hope like fuck it happens to us, we'll fight through to the other side. But I know this and you gotta know it too. No matter what happens, I will never, not ever, not fuckin' ever, Carissa, regret ridin' down that shoulder to help you and your boy. It's the best decision I ever made in my life, and I know that in a way I know I'll feel that until the day I fuckin' die."

***


I love this exchange between Carissa and Joker. And it gave me a hankering for some chili, too. :)

"Do you like chili?"
"Yeah."
"Chili," I declared and started to grab cans of beans.
"You know, a list helps," he remarked.
"I have a mental list," I told him, tossing kidney beans in the cart and going back for black.
"Was chili on it?" he asked.
I looked at him. "Don't you want chili?"
"What I want is not to wander every aisle so we're here for an hour rather than bein' here for twenty minutes gettin' shit from a list."
"If I stick to a list, inspiration can't strike, like the fact I suddenly have a craving for chili," I told him.

He shook his head, grinning and muttering, "Whatever."
He wasn't annoyed.
He was easy.
So I turned back and grabbed black beans. Then I got some chili beans. I finished up with pinto.
Four-bean chili. The best.

Monday, October 30, 2017

#OctobeRecFest Wrap Up ~ #TravelingtotheTerminus ~ Challenges Updates ~ Other Various Updates


My 4th Annual OctobeRecFest has come to an end. I didn't get quite as many books read as I'd have liked BUT I did read FOUR from the list I'd created and that also means I moved a little further into those series. :) I also read 3 not from the list for a total of 7...7 series I moved forward in. I may or may not get one last review posted tomorrow. It depends on how much reading I get done today and chances aren't looking good since it's our State Marching Band finals so I'll be away from home today, helping move pit equipment for the band.

Anyway, here are the books I managed to read this month:

The Angel (The Original Sinners, #2)Impulse (Mageri, #3)Edge of Oblivion (Night Prowler, #2)Breakable (Contours of the Heart, #2)Taken (Undone, #4)Ricochet (Addicted, #1.5)Knight (Unfinished Hero, #1)




Y'all know this year I've made it a goal to catch up in series. The last few years, I've dedicated November and December to #TravelingtotheTerminus. Once again, I'm going to tweak how I usually do things. This year, I'm focusing on series that I'm only behind by 1 or 2 books. There are ~45 series that fall into this category for me. There is no way I can read that many books, but at least I'll be able to cross a few series off my list. *grins* 


2017 Challenges

#2017 Bookish Resolutions
Y'all can click here for a list of my resolutions for this year but I just wanted to give a quick general update...and that is, I'm accomplishing some and failing at others. Luckily, I look at these resolutions as goals which means I'm not really failing. I simply need to refocus and get back to work at them. *grins*

#2017HW Report Card for Quarter One
My goal is 1 book a month. I read 3 books in the first and second quarters of 2017 so that means I got A's!!! However, I received an
F in the third quarter because I didn't get a single book from my list read. And my fourth quarter didn't start off well...nothing for October. But I still have November and December so we'll see. :D


#2017NewRelease - 34 books
#Audiobook Challenge - 21 listens
#authorluv - none yet
#BloggerShame - 10 books
Read All the Books - 11 books
#ShelfLove - 73 books

General Updates

As y'all probably know, I was MIA for quite a few months. I really appreciate all of y'all continuing to visit and/or comment on my posts while I was away. I know I owe y'all some raffle boxes and I have SIX already packed up. So look for those drawings over the next two months.

As for why I was MIA...if y'all follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you might have seen photos. At any rate, I did quite a LOT of traveling, following my oldest and youngest children while they toured for drum corps, took my middle on college visits, AND TO SEE HAMILTON!! I also traveled to be present for the wedding of one of my best friends. In all, I was in 17 STATES in 5 months. I like to travel y'all, but even though I had a blast, it was a bit too much for me. :D

Two last things... 1) I had a little accident with my laptop in August. I was opening it and it somehow jumped from the bar and ended up on the tile floor - on its lid - which did not do good things for my screen. So I'm having to share a laptop with James and since it's his, I get it when he doesn't need it. Therefore, my time online is somewhat limited. Santa is bringing me a new one though...so just a little longer. 2) I'm traveling again *sigh* this week. I'm headed to Texas to visit/check in on my grandma. I'll be online as much as I can.

I know this was A LOT. Thanks for reading!!!

Saturday, October 28, 2017

My TBR List Review ~ October ~ Lover Revealed ~ J.R. Ward #MyTBRList #TravelingtotheTerminus

MyTBRList

My To-Be Read List is a meme hosted by Michelle @Because Reading



Lover Revealed (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #4)Lover Revealed by J.R. Ward
Black Dagger Brotherhood #4
Release Date: March 6, 2007
Genre: Adult, Paranormal Romance
Source: Library
Rating: 4 Bookworms
Challenges: #TravelingtotheTerminus
Goodreads

Synopsis
Butch O'Neal is a fighter by nature. A hard-living ex-homicide cop, he's the only human ever to be allowed in the inner circle of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. And he wants to go even deeper into the vampire world-to engage in the turf war with the lessers. He's got nothing to lose. His heart belongs to a female vampire, an aristocratic beauty who's way out of his league. If he can't have Marissa, then at least he can fight side by side with the Brothers...

Fate curses him with the very thing he wants. When Butch sacrifices himself to save a civilian vampire from the slayers, he falls prey to the darkest force in the war. Left for dead, he's found by a miracle, and the Brotherhood calls on Marissa to bring him back. But even her love may not be enough to save him...



Confession: I started the Black Dagger Brotherhood series before I began blogging. Waaaay before. I couldn't remember where I'd stopped in this series but when I was reading through the synopses of the books, this one didn't sound familiar. After getting about a third of the way in, I realized that yeah, I'd read this one before. BUT it was about ten years ago so even though I remembered some things, there was more that I didn't. So this served as a nice reintroduction to the series.

Highlights:

  • Plot
    Of course I remembered the basics - the Brotherhood, the Princeps Council, the lessers. But I enjoyed how the plot progression in this installment refreshed my memory. What Ward did with Butch and the prophecy was rather genius. It enabled Butch's role to make more sense or rather feel more realistic as well as rounding out his character.
  • Characters
    Getting to spend time with Brothers I'd met previously (and remembered *wink*) and their mates was also memory refreshing. Butch, the hero of Lover Revealed, I'd always liked as well. He's a hard guy with a squishy center. Marissa was a female vampire I liked but felt she was a little weak. Seeing her find her backbone and her purpose after being made to feel "less than" her whole existence was inspiring and made me like her much more. I'm very curious about what's to come for Vishous and John though.
  • Politics/Culture
    The politics among the vampires, the culture of the vampire aristocracy, and the politics among the lessers was interesting to watch in action. Particularly in regards to how the vampires treat women (in the aristocracy) and those they consider inferior among their own race.
So yeah, despite having read this previously, Lover Revealed reignited my enthusiasm for the series and I'm eager to continue.



Friday, October 27, 2017

#OctobeRecFest Review #8 ~ Breakable ~ Tammara Webber #ShelfLove #TravelingtotheTerminus



Breakable (Contours of the Heart, #2)
Breakable by Tammara Webber
Contours of the Heart #2
Release Date: May 6, 2014
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Source: Purchased paperback
Rating: 4.5 Bookworms
Challenges: #OctobeRecFest, #ShelfLove, #TravelingtotheTerminus
Goodreads
Recommended by: Girls @Chapter Break, Naomi @Naomi's Reading Palace, Sharrice @Reese's Reviews, Robyn @Robgirlbooks, Tanya @Girl Plus Books, Teresa @Readers Live 1000 Lives, & Andrea (formerly The Bookish Babe)

Synopsis
He was lost and alone. Then he found her.
And the future seemed more fragile than ever.

As a child, Landon Lucas Maxfield believed his life was perfect and looked forward to a future filled with promise - until tragedy tore his family apart and made him doubt everything he ever believed.

All he wanted was to leave the past behind. When he met Jacqueline Wallace, his desire to be everything she needed came so easy...

As easy as it could be for a man who learned that the soul is breakable and that everything you hoped for could be ripped away in a heartbeat.




**This book was recommended by EVERYONE! (see above)**

I admit to being a little hesitant about Breakable, wondering how much more I could get out of the story being told from Landon/Lucas' POV. But it was so much more than simply a retelling of Easy. Webber gave me it all - everything Lucas endured, all he felt. And I fell for him even harder.


Although Breakable does give us more from Lucas' side of the story on how things went down with Jacqueline, it primarily related more about all that he experienced growing up - especially after the tragedy he suffered at 13. Witnessing all that through his eyes, how he internalized what happened, his dad's reaction to it, the way in which he (Lucas) coped, and, finally, what turned his life around broke my heart. But it also eventually put it back together.

I felt for Landon/Lucas. He didn't have many people on his side. And he continued to suffer devastating losses and/or blows. It was incredible the man he grew up to be and it was beautiful to watch him finally open up to Jacqueline. That took great strength and courage.

Breakable was deeply emotional and moving. And it was absolutely worth the read!