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Saturday, July 23, 2016

2 in 1: Back to Buckhorn & A Buckhorn Summer by Lori Foster

For odd-girl-out Zoey Hodge, the best thing about Buckhorn, Kentucky, was leaving it behind. And now she’s back—at least until she can nurse her mother back to health and hightail it out of there anew. But there’s one person she doesn’t mind seeing again. Garrett Hudson was one of the few who was always kind to her. Now he’s a firefighter—still one of the good guys, but with a sexy alpha charm that’s tempting her inner bad girl.

In school, Zoey was smart, witty and unafraid to be herself. Garrett fell hard back then, and he’s falling even faster now. As far as he’s concerned, there are all kinds of reasons Zoey should stick around. Her pet grooming business. Her mom. And the chance for him to prove that he can be her real-life hero in every way that matters


Back to Buckhorn (HQN, 2014) is a novella that features the offspring of the men in the "Buckhorn Brothers" series. I loved that series, so it's a treat to see their kids fall in love.  In Back to Buckhorn, Zoey has returned home to take care of her mother.  Her secret crush, Garret Hudson is unattached and drawn to Zoey.  Zoey and Garret's story was really sweet.  It's a friends to lovers story, which is always one of my favorites.  It wouldn't be a Burckhorn story with out the family interfering.  It was really fun to watch them all work to get these two together.



Lisa Sommerville’s wild one-night-stand was completely out of character for the workaholic businesswoman. So when she arrives in Buckhorn, Kentucky to spend a summer rethinking her career, she’s stunned to find that Gray Neely has stepped out of her steamy memories and taken up residence in her hometown. What’s more, the laid-back ex-cop wants to pick up where they left off.

Lisa has been on Gray’s mind every day since that mind-blowing encounter. He was reeling from a tragedy in the line of duty, and their connection was instant and intense. Still is. But sleepy Buckhorn is a million miles from her corporate world. And he has one sweet, hot summer to prove they have a future there, together…
 


I honestly think this one is my favorite out of the Buckhorn novellas.  I absolutely loved Lisa and Gray together. In Buckhorn Summer (HQN, 2015) The couple had a one night anonymous stand, but fate brings them together again in Buckhorn County.  Their attraction sizzles off the pages.  I loved how they kept getting interrupted when they were trying to get together.  Of course the family shows up just in time to help out and give the couple the push they need to find their HEA.  It as a really fun read!

Friday, July 22, 2016

Blog Tour: Going Down Easy by Carly Phillips

Author: Carly Phillips
Publisher: CP Publishing
Date of publication: July 2016

Billionaire Bad Boys: Rich, Powerful and sexy as hell.

Billionaire Kaden Barnes has a reputation for being difficult and always getting his way.

Enigmatic and exacting, he's unable to keep an assistant for long. Enter his newest hire, Lexie Parker. She's no-nonsense, efficient and all business… She's also hot as sin and soon starring in Kaden's dirtiest fantasies.

As their passion for each other reaches a boiling point, neither can control the explosive outcome when they finally give in to their desires. He may think he's calling the shots, but for this bad boy, going down easy has never felt so good.


Going Down Easy is the first in a new series about three friends who own a billion dollar business together.  Kade has issues with anxiety and OCD and that prevents him from keeping an assistant.  When Lexie starts working for him, he quickly realizes that she is more than capable of handling his issues.  He also decides he wants her in his office and in his bed.  Lexie has her own stuff to deal with at home, but she can't ignore the chemistry between her and her boss.

I really enjoyed this one.  I thought it was a sweet story without too much angst.  That was a refreshing change.  I thought Kade and Lexie were good togetherespecially since Lexie could empathize with Kade over his issues.  I was also happy to see that Kade was kind of on the other side of his anxiety issues.  Meaning, he had been dealing with it for a while and had learned some coping mechanisms to help deal with them.  It made their relationship more believable and solid to me.  

This is a great start to a new series.  I look forward to Luke and Derek's stories.

Add to Goodreads

Buy links:



About the Author:



After a successful fifteen-year career with various New York publishing houses, and over 40 sexy contemporary romance novels published, N.Y. Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Carly Phillips is now an Indie author who writes to her own expectations and that of her readers. She continues the tradition of hot men and strong women and plans to publish many more sizzling stories. Carly lives in Purchase, NY with her family, two nearly adult daughters and two crazy dogs who star on her Facebook Fan Page and website. She's a writer, a knitter of sorts, a wife, and a mom. In addition, she's a Twitter and Internet junkie and is always around to interact with her readers. You can find out more about Carly at www.carlyphillips.com.

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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Throwback Thursday: Ryan's Hand by Leila Meacham


Author:Leila Meacham
First published in 1984 by Walk & Company
Re-issued in July 2016 by Grand Central Publishing

Some friends are more like family...and that's exactly how Cara Martin feels about Ryan Langston. He stood by her side through the most difficult time of her life and there's nothing she won't do for him, even now after his death. But inheriting Ryan's share of his family's ranch in west Texas and living there for a year? Cara doesn't understand what he was thinking. Still, she cannot, will not deny Ryan's last request...even if it means sharing a roof with his brooding, arrogant older brother.

Jeth Langston doesn't trust Cara as far as he can throw her. Jeth is certain she prevented his baby brother from spending his last days at home. And he'll be damned if he lets this stranger take over the Langston family legacy too. Whatever the cost, he's determined to drive this beautiful outsider away-no matter how intriguing he finds her.

But as the days grow longer and sunshine sweeps across the plains, Cara can't help but fall for the untamed land-and the man whose passion for it captures her, heart and soul. Can their love bloom wild and free on this Texas ranch?


Ryan's Hand was originally written in 1984.  It's the first book by this author.  Included in the beginning of the book is a story of how this book came to be.  As I was reading it, I kept having to remind myself that it was written in the early 80s. A time when men were jerks and women fell in love with them. I think for the time this was written, this is a good clean romance.   It's a really good first effort. The author notes that no updates or revisions were made with the re-issue and I was happy to see that. I do want to try to hunt down some of her other works to see how her writing evolved over the years.

That being said, I did ultimately like this one.  Out of the two main characters, I liked Cara the most.  I loved her conviction to stay true to her promise to her best friend Ryan, no matter what happened to her. She definitely didn't have an easy time at the ranch.  Jeth is a major douche to her most of the time, but she still falls for him anyway.  The ending was sweet.  I only wish that they had spent more time together in the book actually liking each other.   There was a serious lack of communication between the couple.  I did like that it took place over a full year.  I made the HEA more convincing. 

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

What Might Have Been by Sherri Hayes

Author: Sherri Hayes
Publisher: Self
Date of publication:June 2016

Trent Daniels only has one regret in life. Nearly fifteen years ago, he let his high school crush, Abby Hoffman, go off to college in New York City without telling her how he felt. Ever since, he’s wondered what would have happened if he’d been bold enough to tell her his feelings. 

Abigail Hoffman left Ohio behind long ago and with it the family that had taken her in and embraced her as one of their own. She’s missed the Daniels family, but she couldn’t bring herself to face them again—not after what happened. Now her job has brought her back to the place she’s done her best to avoid and right smack into Trent Daniels.


What Might Have Been is the fourth book in the Daniels Brothers series.  For me it was the most emotional book.  It has one of my favorite tropes in romance, the second chance/friends to lovers plot.  Abby had been best friends with Trent growing up.  She was close to the entire family.  But in college, she stopped talking to them all.  Trent has always wished he spoke up in high school, but now that Abby is back, he wants a chance to do just that.

I really liked Abby and Trent.  It was fun to see them reconnect and I was rooting for Trent to get his girl the whole time. However,it wasn't all hearts and flowers.  As I said earlier, this was a pretty emotional story.  Abby had been harboring a secret and it was just so sad.  The biggest problem is that it involved Trent's older brother, Chris.  My heart broke for both of them.  

There is a little bit of a mystery in the book and it balanced out the story nicely.  We also get to touch base with the rest of the Daniels brothers and their families.  Since this wraps up the four brothers, I am eager to see what Ms. Hayes comes out with next.  I would love to see Max get a story!  

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Blog Tour: The Memory Painter by Gwendolyn Womack

AuthorGwendolyn WomackPublisher: Picador Date of publication: July 5, 2016) 

What if there was a drug that could help you remember past lives? What if the lives you remembered could lead you to your one true love? What if you learned that, for thousands of years, a deadly enemy had conspired to keep the two of you apart?

Bryan Pierce is an internationally famous artist, whose paintings have dazzled the world. But there's a secret to Bryan's success: Every canvas is inspired by an unusually vivid dream. Bryan believes these dreams are really recollections?possibly even flashback from another life?and he has always hoped that his art will lead him to an answer. And when he meets Linz Jacobs, a neurogenticist who recognizes a recurring childhood nightmare in one Bryan's paintings, he is convinced she holds the key.

Their meeting triggers Bryan's most powerful dream yet?visions of a team of scientists who, on the verge of discovering a cure for Alzheimer's, died in a lab explosion decades ago. As his visions intensify, Bryan and Linz start to discern a pattern. But a deadly enemy watches their every move, and he will stop at nothing to ensure that the past stays buried.

The Memory Painter really intrigued me after reading the synopsis.  And while it did suck me in right at the beginning.  it ended up dragging a little at times.  The story involves Bryan who has dreams of past lives and in turn is able to create incredible paintings that depict that moment in time that he relives.  He meets Linz and is immediately drawn to her.  They say in reincarnation that we are drawn to others in our past lives over and over.  These two share a history in a lot of those lives.  

So, as I said, I liked premise. The mystery of Michael and Diana and how they connect to Bryan and Linz was kind of cool.  But, in the end it was the pacing that made the book drag for me.  I think the story could have benefited from less past lives.  I found those sections kind of dull and ended up skimming a lot of them. There was a little twist in the end that was unexpected, so if you can stick it out, it's almost worth the wait.


Praise “... hang on for a wild and entertaining ride around the world and through the centuries back to ancient Egypt.” Library Journal (starred review) “Gwendolyn Womack's tale dazzles.” US Weekly (Standout Spring Novels)

“A sweeping, mesmerizing feat of absolute magic...” ?M. J. Rose, New York Times bestselling author of The Witch of Painted Sorrows

“The guy-meets-girl story as you've never heard it before...A mind-explosion of a journey ensues that involves time travel, mystery, love, and a whole lot of plot twists.” Refinery29 “A page turner that will keep readers up late into the night. Readers who love adventure, romance and fantasy will love this book.” The Vancouver Sun



Purchase Links

About Gwendolyn Womack

Gwendolyn Womack began writing plays in college and majored in Theatre at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. She received an MFA in Directing Theatre and Film from California Institute of the Arts and currently lives in Los Angeles with her family. The Memory Painter is her first novel. Find out more about Gwendolyn at her website, connect with her on Facebook and Twitter, and see what she's pinning on Pinterest.

Tour Stops
Monday, July 4th: Lilac Reviews
Tuesday, July 5th: Kahakai Kitchen
Wednesday, July 6th: Dreaming Big
Friday, July 8th: Art @ Home
Monday, July 11th: A Bookish Affair
Wednesday, July 13th: Ms. Nose in a Book
Thursday, July 14th: Broken Teepee
Monday, July 18th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
Tuesday, July 19th: From the TBR Pile
Wednesday, July 20th: Ms.Bookish.com
Thursday, July 21st: Bibliotica


Monday, July 18, 2016

Blog TOur: Review & Excerpt of Don't Tempt Me by Lori Foster


Lori Foster's fantastic contemporary romance, DON'T TEMPT ME, is a story of how love comes along when you least expect it. Be sure you order this amazing standalone novel today! 

"Don't Tempt Me is a sweet, fast read about finding family, love, and more! You can't go wrong with this book! It’s a must read!"—Night Owl Reviews

“Best friends find hunky men and everlasting love in Foster’s latest charmer.”—Publishers Weekly

Publisher: Harlequin
Date of publication: July 26, 2016

Jason Guthrie has no time for entanglements—between helping out his widowed brother and teenage nephew and getting his hometown back on its feet, his days are spoken for. But his nights are another story… And when his lovely new neighbor, Honor Brown, reluctantly accepts his help in remodeling her house, Jason finds himself wishing his handyman skills could knock down the defenses she keeps building around herself.

Martial arts teacher Sullivan Dean knows real danger when he sees it—even when it takes the form of the gorgeous blonde helping her friend move in across the street. After putting his wayward past behind him to focus on teaching control to troubled kids, Sullivan has learned to avoid party girls like Lexie Perkins. But Sullivan can’t seem to keep his hands off the real woman behind that flirty charm—or keep his heart from landing at her feet…

I am always super excited when a new book by Lori Foster comes out.  You all know by now that she is among my top go to authors when I need a good romance with great characters and enough chemistry to steam up the pages.  Don't Tempt Me hit the spot! In this one, we get treated to two romances.  My only problem was figuring out which couple was my favorite!

We have Honor, who moves into the house next Jason's. He is instantly taken in by Honor's beauty, but even more than that he wants to get to her heart. I loved watching these two fall for each other.   Given her real family situation, Honor had a lot of problems with trusting people.  The way Jason and his family made her their own was wonderful.  I also liked Lexie and Sullivan.  While their romance was a little less central for me, it was still fun to watch.  

With most books by Lori, you can also count on getting a little bit of a mystery., Someone keeps trying to break into Honor's new house,  The solution as not what I expected!  But my lips are sealed, so make sure to pick up your copy when it goes on sale next week! In the mean time, enjoy this sneak peek below!


Excerpt:

“Dear God,” Lexie muttered, losing her amusement. Her feet dropped to the floor and she leaned forward as far as the seat belt would let her. “Please tell me that’s not it.”
                “It is,” Honor confirmed with pride. Sure, it was a little rough, the lawn overgrown, the landscaping obliterated. But now it was hers. Lexie might not see the possibilities—but Honor most definitely did. “All it needs is some TLC and love.”
                “Or maybe a…demolition?”
                “Don’t be dramatic.” With a frown, Honor added, “I wanted you to be happy for me.”
                “I know, and I am. I just don’t see why you always want to do things the hard way.” Going quiet, Lexie drew in a breath and straightened her shoulders. “I’ll help. With everything. No, don’t argue. I can’t claim I’m strong and I’ll admit I’ve never remodeled anything. Honestly I’ve never held a hammer. But I’m here for you.”
                “Between dating and working and shopping, you mean?” Honor loved Lexie like a sister, but their social calendars, as well as their motivations, were as different as night and day. As they neared the house, three men stepped out from the garage next door. They’d obviously been working. One held a motor of some sort while the other gestured toward it. The tallest nodded as he cleaned his hands on a towel.
                “Oh, hey.” Lexie perked up. “What’s this? Man candy? Very sexy man candy.” She rounded on Honor. “You’ve been holding out!”
                Repeatedly glancing at them, Honor shook her head. Nope, no holding out. This was the first time she’d laid eyes on the men. Fact—because if she’d seen them, she sure as heck would have remembered.
                “Oh, please, please, please,” Lexie whispered. “Let them be single.”

Amazon * Kindle * Barnes & Noble * Nook * Book Depository GooglePlay * iBooks *BAM * Kobo * IndieBound

Add it to your Goodreads Now!

 About the author: 

 Since first publishing in January 1996, Lori Foster has become a USA Today,
Publisher’s Weekly and New York Times bestselling author. Lori has published through a variety of houses, including Kensington, St. Martin’s, Harlequin, Silhouette, Samhain, and Berkley/Jove. She is currently published with HQN. Visit her online at LoriFoster.com.        

WEBSITE ** FACEBOOK ** TWITTER ** GOODREADS ** PINTEREST ** YOUTUBE

      Lori Foster’s DON’T TEMPT ME – Review & Excerpt Tour Schedule
July 18th
Curvy and Nerdy – Review
From the TBR Pile – Review & Excerpt
July 19th
Curled Up and Cozy – Review & Excerpt
My Girlfriends Couch – Excerpt
East Coast Book Chicks – Review & Excerpt
July 20th
With Love for Books – Review
Go Read A Book – Review
I'm A Book Shark – Review
July 21st
Fiction Fangirls – Review & Excerpt
Best Book Boyfriends – Excerpt
LucyLicious Reads – Review
July 22nd
Book Munchies – Review & Excerpt
Ebook Indulgence – Excerpt
I Love Romance – Review & Excerpt
July 23rd
Nicole's Book Musings – Excerpt
Booknerd1107 – Review & Excerpt
Always Booking – Review & Excerpt
July 24th
Up All Night Read All Day – Review & Excerpt
Becky on Books – Excerpt
Book Briefs – Review
July 25th
EskieMama Reads – Review & Excerpt
Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews – Review & Excerpt
Okie Dreams Book Reviews – Review & Excerpt
July 26th
A Bookish Mess – Review & Excerpt
Embrace the Romance – Review & Excerpt
Take Me Away To A Great Read – Review & Excerpt
July 27th
Margie's Must Reads – Excerpt
Author Groupies – Review
Smut Book Junkie Reviews – Review & Excerpt
July 28th
Romance Book Nerd – Excerpt
BJ's Book Blog – Review
July 29th
The Smut-Brarians – Review & Excerpt
Bookalicious Babes Blog – Review & Excerpt
July 30th
A Brit and a Yank – Excerpt
For The Love of Fictional Worlds – Review & Excerpt
Majorly Delicious – Review & Excerpt

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Sunday, July 17, 2016

End of Watch by Stephen King

by:  Stephen King
published by:  Scribner
publish date:  June 7, 2016

Brady Hartsfield, perpetrator of the Mercedes Massacre, where eight people were killed and many more were badly injured, has been in the Traumatic Brain Injury Clinic for five years, in a vegetative state. According to his doctors, anything approaching a complete recovery is unlikely. But behind the drool and stare, Brady is awake, and in possession of deadly new powers that allow him to wreak unimaginable havoc without ever leaving his hospital room.

Retired police detective Bill Hodges, the unlikely hero of Mr. Mercedes and Finders Keepers, now runs an investigation agency with his partner, Holly Gibney, who delivered the blow to Hartsfield's head that put him on the brain injury ward. Brady also remembers that. When Bill and Holly are called to a murder-suicide with ties to the Mercedes Massacre, they find themselves pulled into their most dangerous case yet, one that will put not only their lives at risk, but those of Hodges’s friend Jerome Robinson and his teenage sister, Barbara. Because Brady Hartsfield is back, and planning revenge not just on Bill Hodges and his friends, but on an entire city.

This trilogy has been a departure from the typical Stephen King story.  I'm glad he took this departure and got into the detective mystery game, because these books were so good.  

End of Watch is the final book in the trilogy.  This story ties back into the first with the Mercedes Killers and some of his victims.  The story takes place several years after the massacre and Brady Hartsfield seems to be making a come back.  Somehow Brady, despite still being in a coma, is programming hand held game devices to hypnotize the players into doing terrible things.  It's up to Bill and Holly to convince everyone that these devices are causing the havoc.  When Jerome's sister Barbara is one of the victims, he too joins the team to bring Brady Hartsfield down.

This book was the perfect conclusion to the series.  It wrapped up the Bill Hodges story very well.  I loved the characters in this series especially Bill and Holly.  I doubt there will be anymore stories after this one, but it would be great if there was another spin off involving Holly.



Saturday, July 16, 2016

Britt-Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman

by:  Fredrik Backman
published by:  Atria
publish date:  May 3, 2016

Britt-Marie can’t stand mess. She eats dinner at precisely the right time and starts her day at six in the morning because only lunatics wake up later than that. And she is not passive-aggressive.  It's just that sometimes people interpret her helpful suggestions as criticisms, which is certainly not her intention.

But at sixty-three, Britt-Marie has had enough. She finally walks out on her loveless forty-year marriage and finds a job in the only place she can: Borg, a small, derelict town devastated by the financial crisis. For the fastidious Britt-Marie, this new world of noisy children, muddy floors, and a roommate who is a rat (literally), is a hard adjustment.

As for the citizens of Borg, with everything that they know crumbling around them, the only thing that they have left to hold onto is something Britt-Marie absolutely loathes: their love of soccer. When the village’s youth team becomes desperate for a coach, they set their sights on her. She’s the least likely candidate, but their need is obvious and there is no one else to do it.


This book reminded me a lot of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry.  Older people leaving their family to set out on a new adventure.  Both had the same kind of tone.  So I think if you liked Harold Fry, you'll like Britt-Marie.  

Britt-Marie gets fed up with her family and decides to leave her husband.  She goes to the job office and realizes there isn't much she is qualified for despite the fact that she has successfully run her household for 40 years.  She pesters the woman that works there until she is give a job in the tiny town of Borg.  Her job is to run the recreation department for the children.  She ends up becoming the soccer coach for the kids despite the fact that she HATES soccer.  The town begins to grow again as does Britt Marie.

This was a lovely story.  Britt Marie was a fun character and her dialogue had me cracking up.  Readers of all ages will like this book, I think there's something in it for everyone.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Spotlight Tour: Giveaway and Excerpt of Devil and the Deep by Julie Ann Walker

Author: Julie Ann Walker
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Date of publication: July 2016


A COVERT MISSION
Maddy Powers’s life revolves around cocktail parties, political fundraisers, and charity events — but she can’t forget the daring former SEAL who appropriated her father’s yacht a few months ago … or the scorching kiss they shared before he disappeared into the deep blue sea.

SPARKS A FLAMING DESIRE
Bran Pallidino carries a dark secret behind his lady-killer eyes — one that keeps him from pursuing a serious relationship with Maddy. But when she’s taken hostage during a trip to the Dry Tortugas, the men of Deep Six Salvage drop their treasure hunt for a sunken galleon and embark on a dangerous mission to save Maddy.

WITH EARTH-SHATTERING REPERCUSSIONS
As they fight her merciless kidnappers, they discover this isn’t a simple hostage situation, but something far more sinister. Passion boils between Bran and Maddy, but what good is putting their hearts on the line if they don’t survive the dawn?

Buy links:

Enjoy this excerpt!

7:29 p.m.…
Hurt.
The word rolled over Bran’s heart like an Abrams tank, smashing the organ beneath its steel tracks.
“Maddy…” He whispered her name. “I…” He stopped himself from saying, I woulda answered if the satellite dish hadn’t blown down. Because he wasn’t sure that was the truth. And he was many things. But a liar wasn’t one of them.
The muscles on the back of his neck tensed, and he ran his hand over them before blurting, “The truth is, I didn’t decide to come ’til the last minute.”
Why?” She blinked up at him, her stormy eyes searching his face.
He didn’t say anything, simply raised a brow and waited. Maddy was a smart cookie, so it didn’t take her long to figure it out. He saw the moment shock and realization struck.
“Oh.” She shook her head, frowning. “Sorry… I thought maybe we were… Because there was that thing on my father’s yacht. And then the last three months we’ve… But…never mind. Doesn’t matter. My bad.”
Bran didn’t know which he regretted more. Seeing that look on her face, or the burning mothersucker of a gash across his thigh.
On second thought, I do know. It was definitely her expression. His thigh would heal with time. But he’d never forget that he’d hurt Maddy. Hurt her, mislead her, and…embarrassed her in front of Mason and the park ranger.
“Maddy.” He cupped her chin in his hand again. Partly to make her meet his eyes, and partly because he couldn’t stop himself from touching her. Her skin was so soft and warm. Had there ever been a woman as eminently touchable as Maddy?
“Sure, I get it.” She jerked her chin from his hand.
“Well, I sure as shit don’t,” said the park ranger whose embroidered name read “Rick.” Seriously? Ranger Rick? He was once again in front of the kitchenette’s counter. But he wasn’t leaning against the Formica countertop. He was pacing back and forth. Back and forth. “I don’t get anything about this.” There was a slightly hysterical edge to his voice. “Who are those men? What are they doing here? And who in God’s name are you guys?”
Bran stared down at the golden crown of Maddy’s head glinting brightly in the dim light. His fingers itched to run through the strands of her short, silky hair. Then his fingers weren’t itching to do anything but curl into fists. She no longer hesitated on his stitches, instead going after them like a dollar-a-day factory seamstress. He had to bite the inside of his cheek to keep from sucking in a harsh breath when the needle punctured fresh flesh.
He thought about asking her to take it easy, but she had made that comment about his Grand Master of Ceremonies—which he’d like to keep fully intact and sporting just the one hole. So he decided to keep his mouth shut and endure. And besides, he probably deserved it after the way he’d bumbled things between them.
You really are an asshole, you know? the supremely unhelpful voice that lived in his head commented.
Roger that. He knew.
“I can’t answer the first question,” he told Ranger Rick, his eyes nearly crossing when Maddy hit a particularly tender spot. Sweat broke out across his brow and the back of his neck. “But if I had to guess, I’d say the answer to the second question is ransom. Maddy’s family is beyond rich—we’re talking Daddy Warbucks—and whoever these assholes are, they probably thought it’d be easy to snatch her from a remote island in the middle of the Gulf.”
“There was an article that ran in the Houston Chronicle about me and the scholarship girls and this trip,” Maddy said consideringly. “Anyone with an eye toward kidnapping could’ve seen it. I should’ve thought about that. I should’ve—”
“This isn’t your fault,” Bran assured her before turning back to Rick. “As for who we are.” He wagged a finger between himself and Mason. Just keep talking. Just keep talking. Ow! Shit!
He jumped. He couldn’t help it. And instead of looking contrite, Maddy scowled at him. Heaven help him, it made her mouth look even more tempting.
“What did I tell you about that tough-guy, don’t-cry crap?” she demanded. “Am I hurtin’ you?”
“I’m f—”
She narrowed her eyes, daring him to say I’m fine one more time.
He cleared his throat and motioned with a hand toward his half-stitched wound. “Please continue.”
She hesitated, turning her head to view him from the corner of her eye as if that might help her see through his bullshit. She must’ve been satisfied with what she saw—confirming he could have had a job on the stage—because after a second, she bent back to her work.
He blew out a covert breath and curled one hand around the edge of his chair, gripping the wood so hard he was surprised he didn’t splinter it. “We’re your neighbors,” he told Ranger Rick through his clenched jaw.
“Huh?” Rick’s youthful face scrunched up.
“We live on Wayfarer Island.”
“Ah, the six retired Navy SEALs who are looking for the lost treasure of the Santa Cristina.”
Bran lifted a brow.
“News travels fast in the Keys,” Rick clarified.
Ain’t that the truth?


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About the author:

Julie Ann Walker is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Black Knights Inc. romantic suspense series. You can find her on her bicycle along the lake shore in Chicago or blasting away at her keyboard, trying to wrangle her capricious imagination into submission. She lives in Chicago, IL.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Throwback Thursday: The Cutting by James Hayman



Author: James Hayman
First published in 2009 by Minatour books

Detective Sergeant Michael McCabe moved from New York City to Portland, Maine, to escape a dark past: both the ex-wife who’d left him for an investment banker, and the tragic death of his brother, a hero cop gone bad. He sought to raise his young daughter away from the violence of the big city . . . so he’s unprepared for the horrific killer he discovers, whose bloody trail may lead to Portland’s social elite.


With the help of his straight-talking (and, at times, alluring) partner, Maggie Savage, McCabe begins a race against time to rescue the missing woman and unmask a sadistic killer---before more lives are lost.

I found this audiobook while perusing my library's overdrive site looking for a Throwback Thursday book.  I had never heard of the series, but I was intrigued.   McCabe is a detective in Portland,Maine, He is a transplant form New York who moved to get away from the big city and make a better life for his daughter.    He ends up investigating the murder of a teenage girl and the disappearance of another woman.

In the end it was just an OK mystery for me. I did finish it, but it was really slow. They myetery wasn't that surprising, even with the little twist toward the end.  I did like McCabe's character.  He is a detective that I would normally be interested in following.  Hopefully the later books have a faster pace.  I didn't care for his partner, Maggie. She was just an odd fit for him.  There was also that weird interaction with McCabe later in the book that didn't make any sense.  Why would she kiss him?  It just seemed out of place and unnecessary.  Anyway, I might look for the next book if it's on audio.  Although, I wasn't a fan of the reader.  He made a lot of the characters seem like emotionless shouters.