Bad Ass Heroines Release Day Party

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Jade Eby & Megan D. Martin are celebrating the release their new novels VORACIOUS and CLINGING TO RAPTURE by giving away some sweet ebooks!

 

 

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Clinging to Rapture
(Rapture, #2)
By: Megan D. Martin
Genre: New Adult Erotic Romance
Goodreads | Amazon

Four months ago I ran away. I left him behind. The man who stalked me, took control of my body, and claimed he loved me.

Now he’s returned. Like dripping razor blades, he has slashed his way back into my life. But everything is different.

He doesn’t want me anymore.

I expected him to come back, to be sorry. I even planned to forgive him. I should have known that he would discard me like everyone else in my life. But I’m going to change that.

My billionaire stalker has come to say goodbye…only this time I plan to keep him.

 

 

 

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Voracious
(Back to Bad, #2)
By: Jade Eby
Genre: New Adult Suspense
Goodreads | Amazon

Voracious, the action-packed second book in the Back to Bad series follows Lacey as she sinks deeper and deeper into the crime addled world she tried to avoid.

She’s got blood on her hands and a yearning to be crazy.

What’s a girl to do when she leaves her innocence at the door?

She goes back to being bad, of course.

 

 

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Megan and Jade are giving four lucky winners their choice of any ebook on their backlist.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday Wrap-Up #35

Sunday Wrap-Up is all about sharing the books and book related items that I’ve picked up recently. I also recap what went on last week and let you in on what’s coming up. I link up my post to Sunday Post, Bought, Borrowed & Bagged, Showcase Sunday, and Stacking the Shelves.

Last week on BSA:
Third Rail by Rory Flynn (Excerpt)
Kissed by Darkness by Shea Macleod (Review)

 

 

So as you may have noticed I was missing for a few weeks. That’s because the Mr. got new orders and we were moving to his next duty station. So, I was a little busy packing and unpacking.

We moved from here:
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To here:
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Three weeks after being at the new place, we have finally started to settle in. Granted the house is still a mess, but things are starting to come together. I have to admit, the Mojave desert is very beautiful but I’m loving the fact that we live practically on the ocean. I can see it from the house, we’ve taken the dog for walks along the boardwalk, and the other day we took a walk down to the harbor. Yup, I’m enjoying the new place quite a bit.

 

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Irresistable Force
By: D.D. Ayres
Release Date: Aug. 26, 2014
Genre: Romantic Suspense
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For Shay Appleton, it’s love at first sight when a gorgeous stray dog is brought into the animal shelter where she works. She just knows he’ll make a terrific watch dog—and with an abusive ex who won’t let go, she needs all the protection she can get. But Shay never suspected that her new pet is actually a trained police K-9 named Bogart—until Bogart’s even more gorgeous, human partner shows up on her doorstep.

Officer James Cannon is one tall, strong alpha male who’s convinced that Shay stole his dog. But once he gets closer to the suspect, he realizes that this stubborn, independent woman not only needs a guard dog, she needs James as well. It seems that someone from her past is stalking her, and threatening her life. When danger meets desire, will James risk his career and his best friend…to protect the woman who’s stolen his heart?

 

 
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Shatter
By: Erin McCarthy
Release Date: Sept. 1, 2014
Genre: New Adult Romance
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Kylie Warner prides herself on being optimistic, but after finding her best friend in bed with her boyfriend and flunking chemistry, her upbeat attitude has taken a dive. Even an impromptu hook-up with her sexy new chemistry tutor only brightens her mood slightly. After all, it’s not like she’ll ever see the tattooed scholar again…

While he’s a whiz at complex equations, Jonathon Kadisch has trouble when it comes to figuring out women. So when Kylie tells him that she’s pregnant after their night of passion, he’s at a complete loss. He’s prepared to be a good father—unlike his own deadbeat dad—but he’s less prepared to fall for the genuine and alluring blonde bearing his child.

With emotions running high, Kylie wonders if Jonathon’s devotion is out of growing love or looming obligation. And when heartbreak threatens to tear them apart, Jonathon will have to fight for the only girl who’s ever made him feel whole…

 

 
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Zomburbia
By: Adam J. Gallardo
Release Date: Aug. 26, 2014
Genre: Y/A Horror
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My name is Courtney Hart, and I’m here to tell you about things that suck. Being born in a podunk town like Salem, Oregon, for one. Living in a world infested with zombies? That, too. And the meat heads I go to school with? I think I’d actually take the undead over them most days. But I have a plan to get out of here and move to New York. I just have to keep selling Vitamin Z along with your fries at The Bully Burger. The secret ingredient? Zombie brains.

I’ve noticed things are getting even worse lately, if that’s even possible. The zombies seem to be getting smarter and faster. If I can avoid being arrested, eaten by shufflers, or catching the eye of some stupid boy, I should be able to make it through finals week still breathing. . .

 

 
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E-Day
By: D.T. Dyllin
Release Date: Sept. 2014
Genre: Dystopian Erotic Romance
Goodreads

M-Day was the dawn of a brand new harsher world. A world where old lives could be left behind and secrets buried for good. At least that’s exactly what Tammie Miles had planned. But even with her new identity as Evo, she discovers that your past is never far. When a man from her old life tracks her down, will she risk everything to keep her secrets? Or will she finally learn that maybe even she can love the right man?

 

 

bought
books

Dragonfire Series, #1-8
By: Deborah Cooke
Genre: Paranormal Romance
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Dragonfire is a paranormal romance series featuring dragon shape shifter heroes on quest to save humanity.

 

GoodiesMy friend got me a going away present before we left the desert. She said she wanted to give me a few of her favorite books. I cannot wait to read them.

 

 
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Eating Stone
By: Ellen Meloy
Genre: Non-Fiction
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Long believed to be disappearing and possibly even extinct, the Southwestern bighorn sheep of Utah’s canyonlands have made a surprising comeback. Naturalist Ellen Meloy tracks a band of these majestic creatures through backcountry hikes, downriver floats, and travels across the Southwest. Alone in the wilderness, Meloy chronicles her communion with the bighorns and laments the growing severance of man from nature, a severance that she feels has left us spiritually hungry. Wry, quirky and perceptive, Eating Stone is a brillant and wholly original tribute to the natural world.

 

 
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Jitterbug Perfume
By: Tom Robbins
Genre: Fantasy/Humor
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“Jitterbug Perfume” is an epic. which is to say, it begins in the forests of ancient Bohemia and doesn’t conclude until nine o’clock tonight [Paris time]. It is a saga, as well. A saga must have a hero, and the hero of this one is a janitor with a missing bottle. The bottle is blue, very, very old, and embossed with the image of a goat-horned god. If the liquid in the bottle is actually is the secret essence of the universe, as some folks seem to think, it had better be discovered soon becaused it is leaking and there is only a drop of two left

 

 
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House of Leaves
By: Mark Z. Danielewski
Genre: Horror
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Years ago, when House of Leaves was first being passed around, it was nothing more than a badly bundled heap of paper, parts of which would occasionally surface on the Internet. No one could have anticipated the small but devoted following this terrifying story would soon command. Starting with an odd assortment of marginalized youth — musicians, tattoo artists, programmers, strippers, environmentalists, and adrenaline junkies — the book eventually made its way into the hands of older generations, who not only found themselves in those strangely arranged pages but also discovered a way back into the lives of their estranged children.

Now, for the first time, this astonishing novel is made available in book form, complete with the original colored words, vertical footnotes, and newly added second and third appendices.

The story remains unchanged, focusing on a young family that moves into a small home on Ash Tree Lane where they discover something is terribly wrong: their house is bigger on the inside than it is on the outside.

Of course, neither Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Will Navidson nor his companion Karen Green was prepared to face the consequences of that impossibility, until the day their two little children wandered off and their voices eerily began to return another story — of creature darkness, of an ever-growing abyss behind a closet door, and of that unholy growl which soon enough would tear through their walls and consume all their dreams.

kRISTIN

Review: Kissed by Darkness by Shea Macleod

11888618Kissed By Darkness
(Sunwalker Saga, #1)
By: Shea Macleod
Publisher: Self-published
Published: June 28, 2011
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Rating:
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Goodreads | Amazon | B&N

Three years ago, Morgan Bailey narrowly survived a vampire attack that left her with heightened senses, uncanny speed, and a new calling: supernatural bounty hunter. Since that day, sexy, street-smart Morgan hasn’t met a vampire she couldn’t dust or a demon she couldn’t kill — until she’s hired to hunt down a priceless amulet and the sunwalker who stole it. Sunwalkers — powerful vampires immune to sunlight — are notoriously difficult to find, let alone kill. Still, a job’s a job, and Morgan’s never been one to shy away from a challenge. So bring it on… right?

But the sunwalker ends up tracking her down. And not only that, he turns out to be cunning, charming — and undeniably gorgeous. Nevertheless, she can’t ignore the destruction he is capable of: the sunwalker possesses an ancient secret which, if unleashed, could destroy the human world. Captivating and fantastical, Kissed by Darkness introduces a kick-ass new heroine and an addictive new series for fans of urban fantasy.

 

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Morgan is the person who chases down the things that go bump in the night. After being bit by a vampire and not turning, Morgan gained some new abilities. Abilities that allowed her to be faster, stronger and heal quicker than a human. Making her one of the best bounty hunters out there. However, her latest job has her questioning everything. She’s not overly convinced that the guy she’s hunting is the one who deserves her attention. In fact, as it turns out the guy who hired her is the real danger.

This was the first book by Shea’s I’ve read. I liked that she took a normal vampire story and mixed Atlantean mythology into it. That little adjustment made the story more enjoyable. I felt like I was reading something completely new. Which is kind of a rare thing when you read as much as I do. So not only do we have vampires, psychics, and fey. We also get the priests, priestesses and Templar Knights.

The story moves at a good pace but I did find myself getting a little restless at times. The author does a lot of beating around the bush. There was a lot of talk in the story. Now normally I’m not against dialogue but there was so much telling but not enough showing, if you know what I mean. There were a lot of times where the characters sat around discussing what it all could mean and what was really going on, instead of getting out there and doing stuff, they just talked a lot. I just with there was more action.

I know that you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover but can we take a second to look at this one? The cover leaves a lot to be desired. The ho-hum look on the models face, the bored looking sitting position, the make-up job that would make a drag queen cringe, and that god awful wig. Goodness, the cover is just awful and I’m sad to see that it doesn’t change any in the upcoming novels either. However, the story inside is pretty good. So in this case, just don’t look at the cover before reading it.

Aside from the lack of action and the less than stellar cover this was a pretty good read. It had a lot of elements to it that kept me interested. Sure, there were times where I would skim along a little to get back to the good stuff but the story as a whole was good. I just wish there was more oomph in the story. It’s a book about a hunter afterall.

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“I love my job. There is something do immensely satisfying about going to work and hacking someone or something’s head off. They don’t usually let you do that at, say, a pharmaceutical company or the post office, even if that someone really deserves it. They kind of frown on it, actually.”

kRISTIN

Excerpt: Third Rail by Rory Flynn

thrdrailThird Rail
By: Rory Flynn
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Published: June10, 2014
Genre: Mystery

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At crime scenes, Eddy Harkness is a human Ouija board, a brilliant young detective with a knack for finding the hidden something—cash, drugs, guns, bodies. But Eddy’s swift rise in an elite narcotics unit is derailed by the death of a Red Sox fan in the chaos of a World Series win, a death some camera-phone-wielding witnesses believe he could have prevented. Scapegoated, Eddy is exiled to his hometown just outside Boston, where he empties parking meters and struggles to redeem his disgraced family name.

Then one night Harkness’s police-issue Glock disappears. Unable to report the theft, Harkness starts a secret search—just as a string of fatal accidents lead him to uncover a new, dangerous smart drug, Third Rail. With only a plastic disc gun to protect him, Harkness begins a high-stakes investigation that leads him into the darkest corners of the city, where politicians and criminals intertwine to deadly effect.

Excerpt

When the first headlights burn in the distance, Harkness shoves the wire cutters in his back pocket, climbs through the fresh hole in the chain-link fence, and scrambles down the gravel embankment. He pulls on a Red Sox jacket to hide his uniform and finds his place in the center of the road like a pitcher taking the mound—focused and ready for tonight’s game. His departmental counselor would see this late-night return to the scene of the incident as proof of risk-seeking tendencies. His brother George would just shake his head and tell him to get over it and move on. Thalia would tell him to have another drink. But they aren’t here. Only Officer Edward Harkness, formerly of the Boston Police Department, stands on the Turnpike, ready to see if a stranger in a car will kill him.The first contender appears, a white BMW that takes the curve at Kenmore Square and races toward Harkness. The roar grows louder and echoes from the cement walls of the Pike. At twenty yards, the headlights set his Red Sox disguise aglow.

Harkness runs west toward the car. No dodging. Stay on the line. These are the rules of engagement tonight.

The BMW hurtles closer and the driver hits the horn. Breath steaming in the cool night air, Harkness runs down the yellow line. The horn screams and the car swerves so close that Harkness could reach out and touch the doors as it flies past, its slipstream spinning Harkness to the ground. The driver lays on the horn, the note bending lower as the car speeds away.

“One down,” Harkness whispers. His palms scrape in the grit as he stumbles to his feet and turns to watch the red taillights smearing toward South Station.

When Pauley Fitzgerald stood here exactly a year ago, the highway was crowded with Sox fans driving home. In the blurry security video, he leaps across the lanes, pivots sideways, ricochets from one lane to the next, and somersaults over moving cars. More than three million people had watched Turnpike Toreador the last time Harkness checked YouTube, staring in sick fascination as Pauley Fitz dropped, danced, and died. After it was all over, the Staties couldn’t even find his teeth.

Harkness runs down the empty highway as the white eyes of new headlights race toward him.

authorrory

Rory Flynn is a Boston-based mystery writer whose novels include Third Rail, the debut of the Eddy Harkness series (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, June 2014). Author Jess Walter (Beautiful Ruins) calls Flynn “a suspense writer to watch.” And readers compare his work to Robert B. Parker, Richard Price, Dennis Lehane, and George V. Higgins.

Website

Review: Pieces of Olivia by Melissa West

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Pieces of Olivia
(Charleston Haven, #1)
By: Melissa West
Publisher: Intermix Books
Published: July 15, 2014
Genre: New Adult Romance
Rating:
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Goodreads | Amazon | B&N

Olivia Warren used to be a normal girl with a bright future.
But on one fated night, everything changed.

Hiding the scars of her past up her sleeves, Olivia transfers her enrollment from Columbia University to The College of Charleston, determined to pursue her own dreams for the first time in her life.

She intends to allow herself a bit of alone time to heal… that is, until she meets Preston.

Preston is best friends with her roommate, completely hot, and off-limits. But the chemistry between them is instantaneous—and as the pair begins to spend more time with one another, their feelings for each other build into something undeniable, something powerful enough to heal Olivia’s deepest scars.

Olivia tries to put her own past behind her and trust Preston, but she discovers that his past might be more present than she ever bargained for…

 

1thoughtsThis was a really emotional book. Olivia is clearly still grieving over something that happened to her. She blames herself and is in a very deep depression for a lot of the book. She has PTSD from her past and the littlest thing like a movie theater or a song will revert her back in time to that horrific day. However, she finds comfort in her therapist, her new college roommate, Kara, and Kara’s best friend, Preston. Over time she starts to heal little by little in the hopes of becoming whole again.

“You’re a little wrinkled right now, and I understand how heavy those wrinkles can feel. How permanent they can feel. But I’ve never met a crease that time couldn’t iron out.”

This was a great story. There was so much raw emotion that there were a couple of times where I was balling my eyes out. I don’t often cry like a baby while reading, so when I do, you know the book is good. I never went through what Olivia did, nor have I been to therapy before, but living through it with Olivia definitely brought it to life for me. So many emotions, so much pain. I could understand why Olivia was the was that she was. The girl had survived something horrific.

There wasn’t a whole heck of a lot going on in the story. Just a girl trying to get back to having a normal life again. Now of course there is the love interest, Preston, who is your typical “I don’t want a relationship” guy. Now granted something horrible happened to him to make him become that way, but I didn’t understand how only dating/sleeping with a girl for a couple of weeks really protected his past from repeating itself. Olivia I understood, but his reasoning didn’t make sense to me. Nevertheless, I like the fact that it wasn’t insta-love. Hell, they don’t even say “I love you” until way down the road. There is angst, I will give it that, but thank goodness not the immediate love connection.

This is the second book by West that I’ve read and loved. She’s definitely becoming an author that I will automatically read without waiting to read reviews first. I just really enjoy her writing style. It’s so easy to fall into the characters and live their lives with them. They aren’t just simply words printed on paper. They become alive with every word. You grieve with them, fear for them and in the end you’re sad to see them go when you finish the story.

 

1favequote“Sometimes it’s all just a guess, Olivia. Life. We move through it, we plan, we try. But at the end of the day, like the weather, it’s all just a guess. We can’t stay inside all day, afraid of the rain. We have to live.”

kRISTIN

Review: Going Down in Flames by Chris Cannon

18363243Going Down in Flames
By: Chris Cannon
Published: June 30, 2014
Genre: Paranormal Romance YA
Rating:
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If her love life is going down in flames, she might as well spark a revolution.

Finding out on your sixteenth birthday you’re a shape-shifting dragon is tough to swallow. Being hauled off to an elite boarding school is enough to choke on.

Since Bryn is the only crossbreed at the Institute for Excellence, all eyes are on her, but it’s a particular black dragon, Zavien, who catches her attention.

Zavien is tired of the Council’s rules. Segregated clans, being told who to love, and close-minded leaders make freedom of choice almost impossible. The new girl with the striped hair is a breath of fresh air, and with Bryn’s help, they may be able to change the rules.

At the Institute, old grudges, new crushes, and death threats are all part of a normal day for Bryn. She’ll need to learn to control her dragon powers if she wants to make it through her first year at school. But even focusing on staying alive is difficult when you’re falling for someone you can’t have.

 

1thoughtsNot only did Bryn not know she was a dragon shifter, but she’s also a mutant that shouldn’t exist. Her parents are from different clans and weren’t supposed to be able to breed. Apparently, they were wrong because a fire dragon and an ice dragon can apparently create a hybrid. Bryn is not only able to use both elements but she’s also able to change her appearance by willing it. Her “coming of age” draws the councils attention and soon she finds herself shipped off to an institute for dragon kids. Not only does the fact that her parent’s ran away breaking the law cause her to be an outcast, but she’s faster and have more abilities than even the more skilled dragons. Yup, there’s a lot in store for Bryn.

This was a good paranormal young adult story. There was a little bit of romance sprinkled in but it wasn’t what stole the show. The author has a great way of giving the readers details on what’s going on without overloading them with information. I liked that we were talked through the transformation instead of getting the usual smoke and mirrors that so many paranormal books throw our way.

There wasn’t anything overly surprising in this story. However, I enjoyed it a lot. I like that the dragon clans are kind of set in their old ways. The council determines whether a dragon is eligible for marriage and if so they are designated a mate. If they aren’t approved for marriage, they are left to find a “benefactor” to whom they become the mistress of. Considering dragons are an old species that date back thousands of years ago, it would make sense that their ways would be a bit outdated.

The author did manage to throw some twists into the story to keep it interesting. I was never bored with where things were going. There was always something going on between attacks on Bryn, her non-existent romantic life, and the fact that she’s still learning about what being a dragon means.

The ending is a bit abrupt and left a lot of loose ends. I’m hoping that there is another book in the works and that this wasn’t a stand alone novel. Otherwise, there’s going to be a lot of frustrated readers.

 

1favepartEvery time I’m reading a romance novel the Mr. always leans over to my side of the couch see what I’m reading. This is pretty close to what we go through this a lot.

 

“What’re you trying to hide? His longer reach almost allowed him to pull the book from her grasp.

“It’s about rival dragons falling in love and ending a war.”

“Why are they half naked?”

“It takes place in a desert.”

“Isn’t that a forest behind them?

“They travel.”

kRISTIN

Excerpt & Giveaway: Perfected by Kate Jarvik Birch

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perfPerfected
By: Kate Jarvik Birch
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Published: July 1, 2014
Genre: Dystopian YA

Goodreads | Amazon | B&N

Perfection comes at a price.

As soon as the government passed legislation allowing humans to be genetically engineered and sold as pets, the rich and powerful rushed to own beautiful girls like Ella. Trained from birth to be graceful, demure, and above all, perfect, these “family companions” enter their masters’ homes prepared to live a life of idle luxury.

Ella is happy with her new role as playmate for a congressman’s bubbly young daughter, but she doesn’t expect Penn, the congressman’s handsome and rebellious son. He’s the only person who sees beyond the perfect exterior to the girl within. Falling for him goes against every rule she knows…and the freedom she finds with him is intoxicating.

But when Ella is kidnapped and thrust into the dark underworld lurking beneath her pampered life, she’s faced with an unthinkable choice. Because the only thing more dangerous than staying with Penn’s family is leaving…and if she’s unsuccessful, she’ll face a fate far worse than death.

 

 

 

Excerpt

 

“Do you mind if I sit?”I jumped a little, surprised to see one of the young men Penn had been talking to earlier standing next to the foot of my chair. He smiled broadly, bringing two deep dimples to his cheeks. He was dressed in the same sort of black tuxedo Penn was wearing.

“Please.” I gestured to the chair next to me.

“Thanks.” Ignoring my gesture, he brushed my feet to the side and sat down near my legs. “I’ve been looking at you all night. Have you not noticed?”

I shook my head.

“I’m Collin,” he said, sticking out his hand for me to shake. I took it lightly, surprised when he brought it up to his lips.

“I’m Ella.” I didn’t know how much Penn had told him about me, but I didn’t want to make the congressman’s wife angry by saying too much.

“It was kind of rude of Penn not to bring you over to meet us,” he said, resting his hand on the cushion near my leg.

I was suddenly very aware of how short this dress was compared to the other gowns I was used to wearing and I tugged at the bottom of it, trying to get it to cover my knees.

“But I can see how he’d like to keep you to himself,” Collin went on, scooting a little closer. “So, is it true what they say about pets?”

I fumbled to pick up my drink, which still sat on the small table by my chair, and took a small sip, but with the bubbles gone it didn’t taste good at all. I swallowed. “I don’t know what you mean.”

“Sure you do,” Collin said, reaching out to put a hand on my thigh. “I’ve always wondered what they taught you at those kennels. It can’t just be how to sit there and look pretty.”

“I…well…there’s etiquette…” I stumbled.

“Not that I have a problem with you just sitting there looking pretty,” he said. “Has anyone told you how gorgeous you look?”

“That’s very kind of you.” I swung my legs over the side of the chaise lounge to give myself some distance. I needed to get out of here, somewhere where I wouldn’t be such a distraction. I was afraid this was exactly what the congressman’s wife had been talking about.

“I’m sorry, but if you’ll excuse me.”

“Wait,” he said, tightening the grip on my leg. “We were just getting to know each other.”

My stomach knotted and I tried to scoot farther away from his grasp. “It really has been a pleasure meeting you, but I think Mrs. Kimball is expecting me.”

Collin laughed softly. “No, she’s not. Come on, we both know she’s trying to hide you. I mean, look at this dress.” He rubbed the fabric between his fingers. “When has a pet ever worn anything like this?”

I shook my head, trying to find my voice. “I don’t…I don’t know what you’re talking about.

“It’s all right,” he said, stretching his hand more fully across my thigh.

I swallowed back the embarrassment that burned the back of my throat. “I…I shouldn’t be talking to you. Mrs. Kimball asked me to keep my distance from the guests.”

“How about we keep our distance from the other guests together?” He nodded his head at the dark house. “I bet it’s nice and private in there.”

My gaze traveled up the shadowed brick to Penn’s room on the second floor. My heart stuttered, imagining how different it would feel if he had been the one to invite me inside. I remembered the way he’d kissed me. Is that what this boy wanted to do? I didn’t want to kiss him.

“That sounds lovely,” I said, pushing down the fear in my voice. “I just need a minute to freshen up. If you want to head inside, I’ll meet you in the conservatory in just a few minutes.”

Collin grinned. “Don’t keep me waiting.” He traced a finger along the collar of my dress.

“I’ve been imagining what’s under here all night. I don’t know how much longer I can stand it.”

“I won’t,” I choked out. As soon as he closed the door behind him, I slid out past the pool house and onto the cool lawn. A swarm of tiny bugs hovered in front of me like a cloud and I batted them away.

Never. I would never let him touch me.

My legs wobbled as I broke into a run. A dark undercurrent surged beneath the congressman’s picture-perfect world, threatening to pull me down and it frightened me…almost as much as what waited for me at the kennel if I was to make a mistake.

 

 
author
sb

Kate Jarvik Birch is a visual artist, author, playwright, daydreamer, and professional procrastinator. As a child, she wanted to grow up to be either a unicorn or mermaid. Luckily, being a writer turned out to be just as magical. Her essays and short stories have been published in literary journals including Indiana Review and Saint Ann’s Review. She lives in Salt Lake City, Utah with her husband and three kids.

Website | Twitter | Facebook

 

 

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Review: Then Came You by Jill Shalvis

18628672Then Came You
(Animal Magnetism, #5)
By: Jill Shalvis
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: July 1, 2014
Genre: Contemp. Romance
Rating:
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Goodreads | Amazon | B&N

Veterinary intern Emily can’t believe she wound up in the small town of Sunshine, Idaho, instead of the Los Angeles clinic she had always imagined. Now she has to put her plans to move to L.A. on hold for a whole year while she fulfills the obligation of her vet school scholarship.

Then Wyatt, her gorgeous one-night stand from a Reno vet conference, introduces himself as her new boss. And Emily is just as drawn to his seductive looks and quiet strength as she was on that very steamy night. She soon learns that Wyatt isn’t just a laid-back doctor, but a delicious alpha male tempting her away from her carefully laid-out plans…

 

1thoughtsEmily isn’t overly excited to be assigned to some podunk town for her vet internship. She was hoping for a little more city and a lot less country. However, she can manage being stuck there for a year, that is, until she walks in on the first day and realizes her supervisor is the guy whom she had a one night stand with. They try to keep their relationship professional but pretty soon they find themselves sneaking around. The only problem is, Emily doesn’t plan on sticking around and Wyatt’s already had his heart broken by a woman who left him behind.

This was a cute story. It was highly predictable but enjoyable in the end. Emily is put in a pretty interesting predicament when her one night stand turns out to be her supervisor. At first she tries to skirt around the whole ordeal but soon finds herself literally jumping Wyatt’s bones… or boner if you will. I liked her character to a degree. I liked that she had compassion for animals and put them before her own safety. I liked her devotion to her family. However, I didn’t fully understand her when it came to Wyatt. She’d tell him that they couldn’t be together, and then the next minute she’d be stripping him in the broom closet saying how he’s just too scrumptious to resist. I’d have been fine if she decided to just go for it, but instead it just came off as weird and scripted. I mean, every interaction between the two when it became sexual was her voicing how she just couldn’t help the slut coming out when she was around him. One time this happened when Wyatt was expressing a dog’s anal glands. I kid you not, the woman got hot and bothered watching his hands work the dog’s ass. And that right there was what really turned me off.

Wyatt was a great character however. He knew what he wanted and he went after it… again to a degree. As a child, his parents moved him and his sisters around the world a lot. His life was uprooted more times than he could count and he never got a say in the matter. So therefor he will never take anyone’s decision from them. Which also means that he would never influence or alter their decision by giving them the choice to stay with him. Thus, the problem with his and Emily’s relationship. However, he is loyal to his sisters and friends. He’s even there for Emily on a moments notice in the middle of the night after she’s made it clear that they don’t have a relationship but rather a bit of fun before she moves on with her life. The guy was a stand up man, minus his problem with owning up to his feelings.

Like I said, this was a cute read. It didn’t wow me, but I wasn’t entirely bored with it either. I wish there was a bit more to it though. It just felt like it was missing something. I never fully committed to the characters.

 

1favequote“He wasn’t sure why she’d been in a suit in the first place when her job was wading knee deep in questionable shit all day, but hell, he had sisters, two of them, both bat-shit crazy, so he knew better than to question a woman’s clothing choice.”

kRISTIN

Review: Straddling the Line by Jaci Burton

18277064Straddling the Line
(Play by Play, #8)
By: Jaci Burton
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: July 1, 2014
Gener: Contemp. Erotic Romance
Rating:
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Trevor Shay has it all—a successful football and baseball career, and any woman he wants. But when he finds out his college mentor’s daughter is in trouble, he drops everything to come to her aid.

Haven Briscoe has finally landed a dream job as a sportscaster for a major network. But she hasn’t been able to move past the recent death of her beloved father, and it’s affecting her career. A plum assignment following the daily life of sports superstar Trevor Shay might be just the inspiration she needs…

Trevor will do anything to spark life back into Haven, including letting her into every aspect of his world. The chemistry between them flames higher than one of Trevor’s home runs and faster than his dashes to the end zone. But as they grow closer, Haven stumbles onto Trevor’s closely guarded secret, one he’s hidden his entire life. And despite his protests, now it’s Haven’s turn to put everything on hold to help Trevor. Will he let her in and trust her with a secret that could blow his professional and personal world apart?

 

1thoughts Trey is a very talented man. He not only plays one sport professionally but two. He’s a very busy man considering he jumps from baseball season to football season in one year with no breaks. He gets a call from his old college dorm parent who calls in a favor. Her daughter (his college tutor) isn’t handling the passing of her father well and with her being a sports reporter, she should do an interview piece on him to take her mind off of her father. Have I mentioned that Trey is a very private man? However, he’d do anything for his dorm parent and agrees to help out. Only, he doesn’t plan to fall for the sexy reporter who shows up, or her persistence in revealing his skeletons.

I LOVED Changing the Game. So I was really excited when I got this book. Even though I haven’t read the other books in the series, each one can be read as a stand alone. However, this one just didn’t work for me. The characters seemed too scripted. There were parts that were just about robotic in both the characters speech and actions. I just found myself not connecting with anything going on because of this.

I did like that the author didn’t include a lot of nonsense drama. The problems that these characters face are real. They don’t play cat and mouse, leaving the other person confused on their feelings. I liked that twist at the end that the author gave Trey. It definitely humanized him.

This was a nice romance with some erotic highlights to it. However, it wasn’t the best one from the series. The characters came off as fake and that really detracted from the story for me.

 

1favepart“I sure as hell hope my mother doesn’t come running down the hall to see what that noise was about,” Haven finally said.

“Me, too. But if she does, I promise to throw you on the floor on the other side of the bed, toss a blanket over you, and then tell her I was thrashing around because I was having a nightmare.”

Her lips curved. “How chivalrous of you to protect my virtue like that.”

“Just the kind of guy I am, babe.”

 

Previous reviews from Play by Play
Changing the Game

kRISTIN

Review: Crux by Moira Rogers

5895613Crux
(Southern Arcana, #1)
By: Moira Rogers
Publisher: Samhain Publisher
Published: March 3, 2009
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Rating:
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Jackson Holt makes a decent living as a private investigator in New Orleans, home of one of the largest underground supernatural populations in the United States. He and his partners have never met a case they couldn’t crack…until a local bar owner asks him to do a little digging on her newest hire.

New Orleans is the fourth destination in as many months for Mackenzie Brooks, a woman on the run from a deranged stalker. After all, any man who shows up on her doorstep claiming to be her destined lover has more than a few screws loose. But crazy doesn’t explain why he always finds her no matter how far she runs.

When her well-meaning boss puts a PI on her case, Mackenzie comes face to face with the incredible truth: magic is real, and whatever spell has kept her hidden and separate from the paranormal world is rapidly deteriorating.

With time running out, she has no choice but to trust Jackson as he struggles to uncover the truth of her past-and her destiny.

 

1thoughtsMackenzie has been on the run for about a month from a man who will do anything to get and make her his. When she first met him, she thought he was charming but then he started talking about destiny and their babies and not soon after Mackenzie found herself running through five states to escape him. No matter how fast she runs and how well she hides, he always seems to find her in the end. Her latest stop in New Orleans has proven to be no different than the last except that she has stumbled across a supernatural community who is willing to lay their lives on the line to save her.

Mackenzie is a really skittish person. She isn’t quick to trust people and it takes her a little bit of time to trust Jackson when he tries to help her. However, she soon learns that the man chasing her, Marcus, wasn’t crazy when he talked about other beings. Not only is Jackson someone who can cast spells and make himself invisible, but apparently she can shape shift into a cougar. Which just so happens to be really rare.

This is the first book by Moira’s that I’ve read and I must say that I really enjoyed it. You don’t only have shape-shifters but seers and wizards as well. There are a lot of secondary characters in this story and sometimes that can throw me off, but they play such a huge roll in the story, that I never got confused with who was who. There was quite a bit of action in this story and a lot of sexual frustration at the beginning when Mackenzie goes into, what can only be described as, heat when the spell binding her cougar side starts to unravel. I found myself flipping through pages just to find out how it all ends and even though this book is rather large… I read it within a day.

 

1favequote“Jesus. How are we supposed to explain any of this to the cops? A wild cougar attacked me in the shower and you shot yourself?”

kRISTIN