ABOUT THAT KISS by Jill Shalvis

January 23, 2018

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A Heartbreaker Bay Novel

I’ve enjoyed every book in this series and this is another good one. After receiving some bad health news, I was looking for a light, funny escape and this fit the bill perfectly.

Kylie is a woodworker who learned from the best, her grandfather. But he was killed in a terrible fire that also took much of his work. She has a special gift from him, a hand carved penguin that is such a treasure to her that she carries it with her. One day after work, she picks up her bag and notices it is open and everything spilled out, and the penguin is gone.

She is desolate, and mentions it to her boss who barely responds. Then she gets an envelope pushed through her mail slot that has a picture of the penguin in a precarious position, and she is determined to find it.

Kylie reluctantly approaches Joe Malone. He works for a private investigating company and is a real bad ass. They have a bit of history – one night at a party, she was drunk and kissed him. It was a life changing kiss for her, but he never followed up so she gave up on him. Nonetheless, she needs his help and he hers – he wants her to make a carved mirror for his sister. A deal is struck, but Kylie isn’t content to sit back and wait for Joe to find it, she insists on coming with him every step of the way.

You can see where it goes but who cares, the journey is the fun part. Another excellent entry into the Heartbreaker Bay series.

1/18 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

ABOUT THAT KISS by Jill Shalvis.  Avon (January 23, 2018). ISBN: 978-0062741769. 272p.

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THE DUKE OF HER DESIRE by Sophie Barnes

January 15, 2018

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Diamonds in the Rough Series, Book 2

Amelia Matthews became a Lady when her brother inherited a dukedom. But he goes off on his honeymoon, asking his best friend and neighbor, Thomas Heathmore, Duke of Coventry, to not only keep an eye on his sisters but help shepherd them through society. It’s important that Amelia makes a match as that will clear the way for her younger sister to do so the next season.

What Thomas didn’t know when he agreed to this was that Amelia is quite stubborn, and has a secret plant to turn a crumbling old home on the edge of a bad neighborhood, into a free school for poor children. Thomas ends up having to help her and they both end up in danger more than once. Of course, they also fall in love but both are too stubborn to do anything about it, until they have no choice.

This was not my favorite Barnes book but I did enjoy it.

1/18 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

THE DUKE OF HER DESIRE by Sophie Barnes. Avon (December 26, 2017). ISBN: 978-0062566829. 384p.

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DARKER by E. L. James

January 11, 2018

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Fifty Shades Darker as Told by Christian

The second entry in the Fifty Shades trilogy was my favorite. It is the most like a traditional romance, albeit a contemporary, highly erotic version, so when James released the “Christian” version, I was all in.

This is from the publisher:

E L James revisits the world of Fifty Shades with a deeper and darker take on the love story that has enthralled millions of readers around the globe.

Their scorching, sensual affair ended in heartbreak and recrimination, but Christian Grey cannot get Anastasia Steele out of his mind, or his blood. Determined to win her back, he tries to suppress his darkest desires and his need for complete control, and to love Ana on her own terms.

But the horrors of his childhood still haunt him, and Ana’s scheming boss, Jack Hyde, clearly wants her for himself.  Can Christian’s confidant and therapist, Dr. Flynn, help him face down his demons? Or will the possessiveness of Elena, his seducer, and the deranged devotion of Leila, his former submissive, drag Christian down into the past?

And if Christian does win Ana back, can a man so dark and damaged ever hope to keep her?

If you’re a fan of the books, you’ll enjoy this one. If you’re not, this won’t change your mind. I enjoyed it.

1/18 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

DARKER by E. L. James.  Vintage (November 28, 2017). ISBN: 978-0385543910. 560p.

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IF EVER I SHOULD LOVE YOU by Cathy Maxwell

January 3, 2018

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The Spinster Heiresses, Book 1

The Earl of Rochdale unexpectedly inherited the title, which came with a large estate in serious disrepair and some gambling debts. Short of cash, the Earl realizes the best way to settle his newly acquired debts and fix up the crumbling house and estate is to marry rich.

The three “Spinster Heiresses” are recommended to him, and to his surprise, he knows one of them. Years earlier, Leonie Charnock had found herself in dire straights, and Rochdale saved her and her reputation, to his own great harm. Now he feels like she owes him.

Those dire straights really soured Leonie on men and marriage, not to mention her own parents and the bad example they set with their tumultuous marriage. Nevertheless, she reluctantly agrees to marry the Earl, but keeps insisting that he promise that she won’t have to sleep with him. He ignores her and the wedding takes place.

This couple has major communication problems, but no fear, they reach their happily ever after. Maxwell tells a good story with some humor and sensual scenes. A very interesting subplot deals with alcoholism, and not in the usual way, as in men in their “cups.” I’ve noticed lately that serious issues are being addressed in some historical romances, which I find adds depth to these stories.

I am looking forward to the next book in this series, A Match Made in Bed, which doesn’t come out until April, 2018.

12/17 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

IF EVER I SHOULD LOVE YOU by Cathy Maxwell. Avon; Reissue edition (December 26, 2017). ISBN: 978-0062655745. 368p.

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THE ART OF RUNNING IN HEELS by Rachel Gibson

December 27, 2017

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Lexie Kowalsky had the bright idea to get herself on TV. She landed a part on “Gettin’ Hitched,” the fictional country cousin of “The Bachelor.” And being the competitive beauty that she is, she wins which means she gets hitched on live TV. Instead, she leaves her groom at the altar and jumps onto the first plane out of town, piloted by a friend.

When she lands in the plane, she is surprised to see that she is not the only passenger. In fact, the gorgeous man sitting there has paid for passage home to a small town, Sandspit, Canada, and Lexie is going along for the ride.

The gorgeous hunk is the Seattle Chinooks (a fictional hockey team’s) newest star, Sean Knox. In an odd coincidence, Lexie’s father is the coach, but because she’s been busy with reality TV, she hasn’t even seen a game this season and doesn’t recognize Sean.

This is a match made in heaven, but first, they have to get through a lot of bumps along the way. It’s a super fun, sexy read and I’m happy to report this is the first book of a new series. I’m really looking forward to the next!

12/17 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

THE ART OF RUNNING IN HEELS by Rachel Gibson.  Avon (December 26, 2017). ISBN: 978-0062247476. 384p.

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BEAUTIFUL LAWMAN by Sophie Jordan

December 26, 2017

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Devil’s Rock, Book 4

Once again I start a series with the most current book rather than the first book. But it didn’t seem to matter, I loved this book anyway.

Piper Walsh grew up on the wrong side of the tracks. Her family has an awful reputation which she just can’t seem to outrun, not as long as she stays in Sweet Hill. But with her brother in prison nearby, she just can’t leave. So she tries her best to take care of her younger sister and pay the bills, but it’s getting tougher all the time.

Hale Walters was one of the golden boys in high school, and is now the Sheriff of the small town. When Piper’s sister gets arrested, she is mortified, especially when she has to deal with Hale. But he has a different perspective on the Walsh family, and is willing to give them a chance if he can get past the enormous chip on Piper’s shoulder.

This was a terrific romance with Jordan’s legendary smokin’ hot loe scenes. But more than just the sex, there is a lot of heart here, and plenty of emotion. I loved it and have just checked out the first three books in the series from my library – I have a vacation coming up next week, guess what I’ll be reading?!

12/17  Stacy Alesi AKA the BookBitch™

BEAUTIFUL LAWMAN by Sophie Jordan. Avon (December 26, 2017). ISBN 978-0062666567. 368p.

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Paperback


SO OVER YOU by Kate Meador

December 20, 2017

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The Chicago Rebels Series, Book 2

Ice ice baby! The Chicago Rebels are a fictional NHL hockey team whose owner has died. He’s left the team to his three estranged daughters, all from different baby mamas, with the caveat that if the team doesn’t make it to the playoffs, it will be sold off.

Hockey is one of the mysognistic sports for sure, so women owners are a rarity. In this case, Isobel Chase  is the middle sister and the one her father favored. He raised her to play professional women’s hockey, but in her first game she got seriously injured and had to leave the game. She is trying to work her way up to coaching the Rebels, and her first assignment is to work with their new left wing. Vadim Petrov, nicknamed the Czar of Pleasure, not that Isobel would call him that. He was her first lover when they were both teenagers, and she didn’t tell him she was a virgin so it was not a wonderful deflowering.

No one knows about their history until one of the players overhears her conversation about it with her younger sister. He blabs, and the gossip is thick. Meanwhile, the Czar of Pleasure has been in love with Isobel since they were together the first time, not that she knows it and he barely admits it to himself. Nonetheless, they find their way back to each other with a lot of hot sex and some real bumps in the relationship along the way.

Another Meador romance so hot the ice can’t cool it off!

12/17  Stacy Alesi AKA the BookBitch™

SO OVER YOU by Kate Meador. Pocket Books (December 19, 2017). ISBN 978-1501180897. 400p.

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COWBOY UP by Harper Sloan

December 19, 2017

I am so excited to be kicking off the blog tour for Cowboy Up, the third book in Harper Sloan’s Coming Home Series! I love this series, and I am delighted to be able to offer a chance to win all three books!

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Win all three books!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve linked to my reviews of the first two, read on for my review of this latest and for all the details on how you can win!

It definitely feels like this is the end of the series and while I’m sad about that, I’m looking forward to whatever Sloan comes up with next.

Cowboy Up tackles the eldest of the Davis brothers, Clayton. He’s the one who inherits the ranch and spends all of his time running it. He hasn’t had a relationship in years, between his work schedule and the last woman, Jess, who really messed with his head.

Clay finally gets a few hours to himself and he heads to the local bar, where a petite little dynamo sits on the next stool. She can’t really see his face between the dark lighting and the smoke in the room, but she sees a big, strong cowboy with an iron jaw.

Caroline Michaels owns a small bookstore in the next town. Her two best friends, twins Lucy and Luke, own the bar and have encouraged her to break out of her shell a bit. Caroline’s been damaged by a horrible home life with her mother and a subsequent years-long abusive relationship. Luke & Lucy helped her escape and she hasn’t had a date in years. But this cowboy looks promising.

The heat between them is unmistakable and a one night stand ensues. They part ways and don’t see each other again for months, until a baby shower throws them together. The sparks fly and they embark on a trial relationship – neither of them wants to commit but they become inseparable pretty quick. There’s not a lot of drama in their relationship until the very end, then wowza!

What I loved most about this book was the epilogue, which is in two parts. The second part, “Fifteen Years Later” neatly tied up the trilogy. Yup, Sloan gives us a peek into the relationships in all three books over those fifteen years. I haven’t seen that before but I’ve always wanted to, and it was very satisfying.

I highly recommend this series to fans of the very specific contemporary cowboy romance subgenre. If you haven’t tried one of these, this is a terrific series to try.

12/17 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

COWBOY UP by Harper Sloan. Pocket Books (December 19, 2017). ISBN 978-1501155277. 384p.

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To win copies of the first three books in the Coming Home Series– Lost Rider, Kiss My Boots & Cowboy Up by Harper Sloan, please send an email to contest@gmail.com with “COMING HOME” as the subject.

You must include your U.S. street address in your email.

All entries must be received by December 31, 2017. One (1) name will be drawn from all qualified entries and notified via email. This contest is open to all adults over 18 years of age in the United States only. Your books will be sent by SIMON & SCHUSTER|POCKET BOOKS.

One entry per email address. Subscribers to the monthly newsletter earn an extra entry into every contest. Follow this blog to earn another entry into every contest. Winners may win only one time per year (365 days) for contests with prizes of more than one book. Your email address will not be shared or sold to anyone.

About the author:

Harper Sloan is the New York Times and >USA Today bestselling author of the Corps Security and Hope Town series. She started writing as a way to unwind when the house went to sleep at night. Harper lives in Georgia with her family. Visit her at AuthorHarperSloan.com or Facebook.com/HarperSloanBooks.


DUKE WITH BENEFITS by Manda Collins

December 12, 2017

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Studies in Scandal, Book 2

Due to an illegal marriage, Alexander Westcott finds himself the new Earl of Riverdale. This was not something he coveted, especially when he finds that the previous Earl has let the estate go into disrepair. Alexander didn’t inherit money in addition to his title, so as the gentry is wont to do, he must marry money.

Wren Heyden is a neighbor of the new Earl. She has been a recluse for most of her life. Born with a large strawberry birthmark covering half of her face, she was scorned and abused by her parents until a kindly aunt took her in. The aunt married well, and they adopted Wren, giving her a comfortable life, albeit a lonely one of her own choosing. When her aunt and uncle die, she inherits everything.

The young heiress only wants for one thing; a husband. She invites a few of her unmarried male neighbors to visit, hoping to find a husband in one of them and is quite taken with the Earl. But as much as he needs to marry for money, he isn’t going to rush into anything. They agree to start a courtship, and Wren finds herself in way over her head. He has social obligations, a large family, and wants her to participate in his life. She is very much afraid, but takes small steps to that end, and finds herself falling for Alexander.

Alexander is not looking for great passion, just companionship, and affection. But the relationship deepens, much to their surprise. But Wren has to learn to get past her abusive childhood, and with Alexander’s help, she does.

This is an interesting, lovely romance from Balogh. The sex is more sensual than explicit, but the romance rings true. Another wonderful entry into the Westcott series.

11/17 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

DUKE WITH BENEFITS by Manda Collins. St. Martin’s Paperbacks (June 27, 2017). ISBN 978-1250109880.  320p.

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SWEET TEA AND SYMPATHY by Molly Harper

December 11, 2017

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Southern Eclectic Series, Book 1

This is a contemporary romance with oodles of charm and laughs. This author is new to me as her previous bookls were paranormal, which I just can’t get into for whatever reason. But this book, the first of a new series, is paranormal free and right in my wheelhouse.

Margot is a top flight party planner in Chicago until disaster strikes. Of course it is all caught on video and goes viral, causing her to lose her job and consequently her home. Margot has lost her mother, and her father took off when she was a toddler, and the only family she has left is her stepfather who adopted her as a child. Then he pulls the rug out from under her, telling her he was never really married to her mother. While she is reeling from that bit of news, she gets a job offer.

Margot’s great Aunt on her father’s side calls to offer her a job at the McCready Family Funeral Home and Bait Shop in Lake Sackett, Georgia. Margot has always believed her father, an alcoholic, wanted nothing to do with her but she is definitely curious about him and his family, so off she goes. She is sending out resumes everywhere trying to get a job as a party planner in a city, but then she meets Kyle, the principal of the elementary school, and things start looking up in Georgia.

Lots of small town charm including every Southern stereotype from sweet tea to bless her heart, but who cares when a book is this engaging. The characters are quirky, the setting brought skillfully to life, and there is just enough romance and drama to keep it all interesting. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series.

12/17 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

SWEET TEA AND SYMPATHY by Molly Harper.  Gallery Books (November 21, 2017). ISBN 978-1501151224. 320p.

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