Sunday, May 31, 2020

Review: Broken by Rebecca Zanetti

Author: Rebecca Zanetti
Publisher: Zebra
Publication Date: May 2020

Dangerous: Former Navy SEAL Clarence Wolfe's unit was taken out with a land mine. Injured and devastated, he hasn't been quite right since. Worse, the tragedy was no accident. All Wolfe wants now is to take down the man responsible. In the meantime, he's good with being the muscle for the Deep Ops team--and leading a steamy no-strings-attached personal life. Until one intriguing woman changes everything . . .

Determined: Reporter Dana Mulberry is on a mission to avenge the death of a fellow journalist. She's finally hot on a trail--right to a sex club--where she runs into . . . Wolfe? It seems both their leads have led to the same spot. To keep from blowing their covers, they'll have to at least pretend to have a little fun. Trouble is, they genuinely like each other. And that's way too risky for Wolfe, especially when, to his surprise, Dana agrees . . .

Complicated: Drawn to each other in ways they can't understand, Wolfe and Dana keep it professional--until they're shot at one night. And when their adventures land them both at the heart of corruption in D.C.--and at odds in their missions--they'll have to dig deeper than ever to succeed in their quests--and with each other . . .

Broken is the third book in the Deep Ops series.  This one is Wolf and Dana's story.  I love this series.  So far, every story has had the right amount of intrigue, action, romance and comedy.  Wolf has been my favorite since the first book.  I was so excited to read his story.  It was everything I wanted.

I loved Wolf and Dana.  They needed each other.  I loved their banter with each other.  The mystery of who was after Dana and Wolf was intriguing and full of suspense.  The ending was a little predictable, but I still loved it.  One of my favorite parts of the book was the wedding.  It was so funny and had a lot of laugh out loud moments.  Dana's family was so much fun.  I would love a series with just them in it.  The rest of the team played a big part in the story as well.  I love how these characters are coming together as a family of sorts.  I look forward to the next book!

Saturday, May 30, 2020

May Mini Musings

Escape Room:  This one comes out in July, 2020.   I found it an OK YA horror. It had great potential, but fell flat on the execution.  It was fairly predictable and I guessed the ending.  The characters were kind of one dimensional and I didn't feel like I got to know them that well.  It was originally published in Dutch, so I'm there was something lost in translation or not.  It's a quick read that could be read in an afternoon.

The God Game:  I wish I could have loved this book, but it ended up just being OK.  I was expecting a cool computer virtual reality game that becomes all consuming and dangerous to its players.  And while I got that, I also ended up with a lesson in morality and some vague religious and mythical references that went over my head. Oh and Trump bashing. Just what any YA reader wants, right?  With forgettable characters and an overall boring plot,  I'm not sure I would recommend this one

Best Behavior: I wish I liked this one more than I did.   I could sympathize with Meredith for her situation. Empty nest syndrome is closer for me than I want to admit. Despite that  I found her a little depressing. In fact, I think the only character I really liked was Joel.  I found the book a bit repetitive and found my self skimming in places.  I think it just wasn't for me..

Dark Ride:  This was an enjoyable horror story.  I thought it had the the right amount of gore and suspense.  The characters were fun  and I liked that no one was safe.  The only thing I didn't love was the epilogue.  I thought it was a bit cheesy.  Definitely check this one out.

Accidental Girlfriend: I thought this was a really cute and funny rom-com.  I found myself laughing out loud so many times.  I loved Mason and Lauren together.  They had really fun banter.  I think they would be a fun couple to hang out with.  I highly recommend this one.

The Earl Next Door:  This was another fun and cute romance.  I thought the interaction between the girls at the school and the Earl were hilarious.  Adeline and her friends were hilarious.  I loved the school that they put together for the poor young girls to be able to earn a living in the future.  Adeline and Lyon were so good together.  I can't wait to read the next book.

Blog Tour: Giveaway & Excerpt of Night of the Billionaire Wolf by Terry Spear

Author: Terry Spear
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: 5/26/2020

It’s not easy being a billionaire, a wolf shifter, and a woman…

Lexi Summerfield built her business from the ground up. But with great wealth comes great responsibility, and some drawbacks Lexi could not have anticipated. Lexi never knows who she can trust… Even on vacation, Lexi has a hard time trying to relax. And for good reason—the paparazzi are dogging her, and so is someone else with evil intent.

Then Lexi meets bodyguard and gray wolf shifter Ryder Gallagher, who’s also vacationing at Redwood National Park. When the two run into each other on the hiking trails, and then serendipitously rescue two bear cubs, Lexi feels safe for the first time in she can’t remember when. But secrets have a way of surfacing… With the danger around Lexi escalating, Ryder will do whatever it takes to stay by her side…

Purchase Links:

Enjoy this excerpt:

Friendship is fine. Mating for life is a whole other story.” Lexi had never checked into their backgrounds, something she would definitely have done if one of the wolves had really moved her.
“I agree with you there.”
The rain-saturated breeze switched, and Lexi smelled the scent of a male wolf and a black bear that had passed through there recently.
“The wolf has to be a lupus garou like us,” Kate said, “since no one has reported any sightings of wolves in the area. Maybe the wolf was the one who left the message?”
“I don’t believe so.” Lexi didn’t think her father would ask another wolf to get involved in this. The fewer people who knew about it, the better. “And there’s a female black bear, by the smell of her, roaming the area. Keep your eyes peeled and continue to make noise. We need to head on back before the rain starts anyway. We can check the other location later. It will take us about an hour to reach the cabin.”
Kate laughed. “How often does the weatherman get it right?”
Lexi saw a fairy ring of mushrooms and took another picture. “Yeah, I know. But you know me. I always try to give him the benefit of the doubt.”
Light rain began to fall, and then the drops grew bigger. Lexi hurried to put away her camera, and both laughing, they pulled out their ponchos. They were already soaked by the time they got the ponchos on. Still, they’d be protected somewhat from the continuing rainfall.
A couple of young bear cubs cried out somewhere in the distance, and Lexi’s adrenaline surged. “Do you hear that?”
“Yeah, they’re close by. It sounds like danger to me.”
“They’re crying for their mother. They have to be in trouble. I’ll see if the park rangers can rescue them.” Lexi hurried to get her phone out and called the ranger service. “Hi, my friend and I were hiking, and we heard the distress calls of a couple of bear cubs.”
“We’ve got our hands full with a family of hikers who have lost their way, including one who’s badly injured. And a search party is looking for another missing hiker. We can look into the cubs’ situation after we’ve taken care of the hikers in distress.”
“Thanks.” Lexi ended the call.
“You didn’t tell them where the bear cubs are.”
“The park rangers are too busy with human distress calls. You’re my bodyguard. You can protect me.” Lexi left the designated trail, which she wouldn’t normally do as a human because she didn’t want to trample the vegetation. The bear cubs’ cries guiding her, she raced through the forest as best she could, trying not to stumble over tree branches and fall into the ferns filling the understory.
Kate trailed close behind her. “This is a dangerous idea. Where there are cubs, there’s a mother bear nearby. The female bear we smelled, I betcha.”
“Unless something has happened to her. And then we need to rescue them.”
“What do you propose we do? Take them home with you?”
Lexi was sure Kate wasn’t being serious. Wolves raising bear cubs at her oceanside home? No way.
“Once we rescue them, I’ll call the park rangers to pick up the cubs and take care of them if the mother doesn’t come for them. The rangers can find a home for them. As young as the cubs’ cries sounded, they wouldn’t be able to make it on their own.”
Lexi and Kate continued to move quickly through the underbrush in the direction of the cliffs. Lexi’s skin prickled with unease, her stomach twisting in knots. From the sound of the cubs’ cries, they were way down below the cliffs, and the only way to reach them quickly would be climbing down there. That terrified her. Worse, her fearful scent would clue Kate in.
No way had Lexi wanted anyone to know what had happened to make her fear cliffs. She prided herself on keeping her secret. But even now, she suffered a flashback: gasping as a wolf as the soil and rocks at the edge of the cliff gave way, free-falling toward the rocky ground, praying some of the tree branches would help to break her fall. They did, scraping and bruising her, but she still landed badly on the rocks below and broke her left hind leg. Just from the memory, she felt a shock of phantom pain shoot up her left leg. That would be the last time she’d fight with a boyfriend and take off on her own without telling anyone where she’d be.
It had been a stupid thing to do, something she had seen others do in videos on I Shouldn’t Be Alive—in other words, going alone, not telling anyone where she’d be, not having a satellite phone in remote areas, and not having water with her—though as a wolf, that was understandable. She’d sworn she’d never do anything that dumb herself. Worse, she’d been in her wolf form and couldn’t climb to safety with a broken leg, so she’d had to shift into her human naked form before help arrived.
She and Kate finally reached a steep cliff and Lexi hesitated, not wanting to get near the edge that, according to forest ranger reports on the area, were known to crumble. Chills raced down her bare arms and legs. She had to force herself to move toward the cliff’s edge. Slowly, so she wouldn’t end up falling and breaking a leg like she’d done before.
“Are you okay?” Kate asked.
“Yeah, sure. The cliff face is unstable. I’m just being careful.” But it was a lot more than that.
“Okay, yeah, you’re smart to do that. I guess I can’t talk you out of taking this dangerous route and looking for a safer way to get down there instead.”
“I don’t want to risk delaying the rescue.” Lexi finally reached the edge. She observed the rocky cliff, looking for the best way to climb down, terrified she would fall. The mewling cries were coming from the base of the cliff near a couple of trees.
“This is not what I had in mind when I signed up to… Holy shit,” Kate said, peering over the edge of the cliff.
Lexi looked down at the swollen creek rushing along the banks of the cliff. “The creek’s risen because of all the rain. The cubs are crying in a den down below. They could drown. We have to save them.” Lexi started down the cliff, grabbing whatever she could—rocks, tree roots, vines—to keep from falling to her death or breaking a leg or more. She grabbed what looked like a stable rock, but as soon as she tried to hold it and move her right foot to another rock, the one in her left hand pulled free. She fell and cried out, grabbing for anything that could stop her fall. She grasped a tree root and hung on for dear life, her breath coming out in harried puffs.
“Oh God, hang on, Lexi. I really didn’t sign up for this.” Kate waited to descend so she didn’t cause an avalanche of rocks and dirt to collapse on Lexi.
“You don’t have to do it.”
“Are you kidding? Then you’d be able to take all the glory!”
Lexi smiled, then frowned. If the mother bear attacked them, there wouldn’t be much glory in that.
Excerpted from Night of the Billionaire Wolf by Terry Spear. © 2020 by Terry Spear. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.

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About the author:

USA Today bestselling author TERRY SPEAR has written over forty paranormal romances. Heart of the Wolf was named a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year and Billionaire in Wolf’s Clothing was a Romantic Times Top Pick. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry also creates award-winning teddy bears. She lives in Spring, Texas.

Friday, May 29, 2020

Books I Didn't Finish in May

Follow Me:  I gave up on this one at about 30%.  I didn't like the multiple points of view.  The characters were self centered and boring.  I felt like the "Instagram" star was a cliche and not realistic.   It's really hard to like a book when you don't care about any of the characters. I flipped to the end and was correct in what was going to happen.   Also, if you move into a new apartment and the lock doesn't a new one and bill the landlord.

The Summer Villa:  I ended up DNFing this one fairly early on.  I didn't like that main character at all.  I had little patience for an 'Influencer" who feels she is not a good mother, so she spends zero time at home instead of working through her issue and bonding with her child.

The Socialite:  I have come to the conclusion that I just don't enjoy books that take place in WWII.  I DNF'd this one about 25% in.  I didn't like any of the characters.  I had a hard time buying the premise.  It definitely wasn't for me.

Breath Like Water:  I was definitely not the audience for this book.  I do enjoy a lot of YA books, I just didn't enjoy this one.  It's definitely a case of it's me not you.  I have kids and if I ever had a coach or teacher treat my child like the coach did in this book, I would never be able to sit back and let it happen.  I couldn't get past that.

To Have and to Hoax:  I had heard such good things about this book.  I was hoping it would be fun and flirty.  I stopped at about 50%.  I found this couple infuriating. Both characters were immature.  I can only take the non-communication scenario for so long.  When James started flirting with another woman in front of his wife, I was done. I don't care if was a set up, that was gross and turned me off of the book.

Sister Dear:  This book was really boring.  The main character was annoying and a "poor me".  Maybe it is the current global situation, but I was just not in the right head space for a character like that.  I did skim to the end.  I'm glad I didn't finish it, because I would not have been happy had I invested time into a character only for it to end the way it did. 

Blog Tour: Excerpt of Until the End by Juno Rushdan

Author: Juno Rushdan
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: 5/26/2020

He’s strong. Fierce. Relentless. And he may be her only chance of surviving the night.

Gray Box operative Castle Kinkade always gets the job done, no matter how tough the assignment. But when he agrees to protect white-hat hacker Kit Westcott, Castle’s loyalty is tested like never before. Trapped in the closest of quarters, protective instincts flaring, he can feel the ice surrounding his heart melt…and he knows he’d do anything to keep Kit safe.

Even defy the rules that shaped his life.

Castle is the last person Kit should confide in, let alone be attracted to, but he’s the only ally she has left. Under threat of imminent attack—and a chilling conspiracy that hits too close to home—Castle and Kit are forced to put their hearts and lives on the line…and stop at nothing to face the greatest danger the world has ever known.

Purchase Links:
Amazon  B&N  Apple  Kobo  BAM  Bookshop  

Enjoy this excerpt:

Did you find out why they changed security protocol?” Jess asked, driving the armored truck along the dark, deserted road stretching before her like a giant black hole.
“Nope.” Roger stared out the passenger window. “I don’t care either.”
She tried ignoring the dread that always bubbled in her gut on Route 15. This road was the worst part of their quarterly drive making deliveries from Nexcellogen to Fort Detrick.
Her gaze flicked to the rearview mirror. All clear. She half expected to find the boogeyman chasing up behind them. So ridiculous. Nothing was different about this run—except the sidearms she and Roger both carried. A new security requirement that substantiated the unnerving rumors among the drivers about the nature of their cargo.
Roger tapped his fingers against the gun on his hip like he was itching to shoot something. “Be grateful Nexcellogen didn’t replace us with retired cops. And the hazardous duty pay they’re giving us means more money for our kids’ college funds.”
Jessica wasn’t turning her nose up at an extra thousand per delivery, but it didn’t whitewash the fact they now had to carry lethal weapons and hadn’t been told why.
“I heard Fort Detrick handles the biological defense program,” Jessica said. “There’ve been whispers we’re transporting engineered toxins.” The kind of whispers that fueled her nightmares and painted her and Roger as Satan’s little helpers.
“It’s none of our business.” Roger raised his palms. “We’re paid not to ask—”
Pop! Pop! The truck jerked and swerved. That was damn loud. It sounded like exploding balloons or gunshots, followed by a whiffling noise. She slowed down and tightened her grip on the wheel.
“What the hell?” Roger asked. “Did we blow a tire?”
“More than one. But how on earth—”
Her head snapped around at the growl of a roaring engine. Blinding light cleaved the darkness on her left—and on the right!—from both sides of the crossroads. Headlights bore down on them.
Oh God! She threw her arm up, shielding her eyes from the onrushing light.
It happened fast. Too fast.
Two vehicles bigger than theirs, traveling at twice their speed, T-boned them on either side. The thunderous crunch of metal smashing into metal swallowed her scream.
Her head whipped back, slamming on the headrest and then forward into the airbag. The grinding force of the crash jarred every bone in her body.
Everything inside her hurt like a son of a bitch.
The airbag deflated. Her vision was fuzzed, dizziness eating away at her brain.
Roger stirred. “Jess, you okay?”
She wiped the moisture leaking from her nose. Blood streaked her hand. “Yeah. You?”
The semis that had pinned them wheeled into reverse, pulling back from the armored truck in an agonized squeal of metal. Headlights flicked on in front of them from a third vehicle.
She squinted at the light, letting her eyes adjust. Two men appeared in the road, dressed in black, wearing ski masks and carrying guns.
Roger drew his weapon and aimed it at the windshield.
“Don’t shoot,” Jessica said. “They can’t get in.” The glass was bulletproof. Doors, shell, and cabin were reinforced. There were no external door locks. The onboard sensor had detected the accident on impact. Police and hopefully an ambulance were already dispatched. “We have to sit tight. The cops are on the way.”
“Bullshit! Nexcellogen gave us guns to protect ourselves!”
The taller of the two men made a throwing gesture, bringing his hand from his shoulder straight out toward them.
A spear-shaped instrument resembling a harpoon shot into the windshield, puncturing the glass. Long prongs ejected like steel fingers, hooking onto the inside of the windshield.
Bulletproof but not spike-proof. That’s not good.
“Christ! What do we do?” Roger yelled, the 9mm shaking in his hand.
Saying a quick prayer, Jessica fumbled for her cell phone. They needed help. Right now! But the cops were already on the way, so who to call?
“They’re going to get in!” Roger waved his gun wildly at the figures on the other side of the windshield. “Jess, we’ve got to do something.”
The engine of the vehicle in front of them revved. The safety glass splintered into a mass of spiderweb cracks around the steel prongs.
Jessica’s heart lurched. Panic swelled. She dialed 911, her fingers moving on instinct.
The windshield began to buckle, the safety film still holding together.
“Oh, fuck!” Roger opened fire.
Bullets ricocheted around the cabin. Searing heat bit into Jessica’s side, tearing through her belly while her ears rang from the percussion of the shots. She dropped the phone and gripped her stomach. Hot blood seeped through her fingers. “I’m…I’m hit.”
The windshield popped out of the frame. Something whizzed into the cabin and clattered to the footwell. A deafening bang and a startling flash battered the confined space.
The world turned stark white. A great roaring silence filled her ears. She grabbed her head, disoriented, her senses swimming, just as someone dragged her out of the truck cabin and onto the cold pavement.
Pain exploded in her side and nausea climbed up her throat.
The man pressed something to her wound and patted her cheek with a gloved hand. “I’m sorry.” Not a man. A woman’s voice rose over the fading high-pitched hum in Jessica’s ears.
The back doors of their armored vehicle were hoisted open. Two people climbed inside.
Jessica shifted her head, looking underneath the truck. Roger was facedown on the ground, his wrists cuffed behind his back. Another individual stood near him.
“You weren’t supposed to have guns, Jessica,” the woman said.
They knew her name. How?
The woman took Jessica’s weapon and tossed it. “No one was supposed to die.”
Die! “I c-can’t die.” She was only forty. Too young to die.
“Yankee?” the woman called to the tall, broad-shouldered man stepping out of the truck, a metal container in his hands. “Did we get it?”
“Smallpox, anthrax, and Z-1984,” Yankee said. “How bad is she?”
“The bullet punctured her liver. The blood is black.”
“Sierra, leave her,” Yankee said and turned. “Whiskey, Victor, blow the trucks.”
“The pain will end soon,” Sierra said. Then she was gone from sight.
That thought wasn’t reassuring. Pain was good. It meant Jess was still alive. Where were the cops and ambulance?
Explosions rocked the night. Twin fireballs burst from the Mack trucks, painting the darkness red and orange. Heat licked her face but failed to warm her body.
She was so cold. Bile flooded her mouth. A growing numbness crept up her side as fear choked her, twisting her heart.
Still no sirens. Hope fled. The bloodcurdling realization sank in that she was going to die on this godforsaken road…all because someone wanted to steal the deadliest biotech ever created.
Excerpted from Until the End by Juno Rushdan. © 2020 by Juno Rushdan. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.

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About the author:

Juno Rushdan draws from real-life inspiration as a former U.S. Air Force Intelligence Officer to craft sizzling romantic thrillers.  Although she is a native New Yorker, wanderlust has taken her across the globe. She’s visited more than twenty different countries and has lived in England and Germany. When she’s not writing, Juno loves spending time with her family. She currently resides in Virginia.

Author Website:

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Blog Tour: Review of Bookish Princess by C. Lesbirel

Bookish Princess by C. Lesbirel is a contemporary Beauty and the Beast. Fans of enemies to lovers and angsty love stories will devour this new adult romance. The next installment of the Modern Princess Collection is now LIVE!

Only on Amazon + Read for FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

Desperate to escape the responsibility that came with her gypsy roots, Bella buries her head in books and does everything she can to hide her true identity. 
Hunter was born to fight and win, but fighting for Bella is a losing battle from the very beginning.

When she is forced to marry a monster, will she take a chance on love and see beneath the beast, or will she run away and turn her back on everything she knows?

If you enjoy angsty love stories and need to know what happens when love is unrequited, you’ll love this new adult, Beauty and the Beast retelling.

Bookish Princess is the latest installment of the Modern Princess Collection. It is essentially a Beauty and the Beast/ enemies to lovers story.  It is a quick read, but I wish it was a little longer.  I wanted more interaction with Bella and Hunter.  I liked both characters a lot, especially Hunter.  I can't imagine being put into the position either of them were put into.  I was rooting for them to figure things out and I enjoyed the ending.  There was one thing that I had a hard time with.  Something happens to Bella that seems to be swept under the rug by everyone involved and that did bother me.  I I would have liked more of a resolution of that aspect.  I do recommend this one.  Any character who loves to read is one after my own heart.

About C. Lesbirel

Clare Lesbirel is a lover of all things pink and fluffy with a huge obsession for Happy Ever After's. This includes most romance novels, country songs and Hallmark movies. She lives in England where she spends most of her time reading or dreaming up new love stories. She first published with her best friend under the pen name, Autumn Ruby in 2018 and won a handful of indie author awards. It is the love and support of the friends she has made along the way that has led her to follow her dreams of publishing sweet, sexy stories that celebrate the relationships of the perfectly imperfect.
Clare loves to befriend those who are equally as obsessed with hot alpha’s as she is, so be sure to catch up with her on social media.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Spotlight: Excerpt of Sister Dear by Hannah Mary McKinnon

Author: Hannah Mary McKinnon
ISBN: 9780778309550
Publication Date: May 26, 2020
Publisher: MIRA Books

In Hannah Mary McKinnon’s psychological thriller, SISTER DEAR (MIRA Trade; May 26, 2020; $17.99), the obsession of Single White Female meets the insidiousness of You, in a twisted fable about the ease of letting in those who wish us harm, and that mistake’s dire consequences.

The day he dies, Eleanor Hardwicke discovers her father – the only person who has ever loved her – is not her father. Instead, her biological father is a wealthy Portland businessman who wants nothing to do with her and to continue his life as if she doesn’t exist. That isn’t going to work for Eleanor.

Eleanor decides to settle the score. So, she befriends his daughter Victoria, her perfect, beautiful, carefree half-sister who has gotten all of life’s advantages while Eleanor has gotten none.

As she grows closer to Victoria, Eleanor’s obsession begins to deepen. Maybe she can have the life she wants, Victoria’s life, if only she can get close enough. 

Buy Links: 

Enjoy this excerpt:

Chapter 1

The police didn’t believe me.
A jury wouldn’t have, either, if I’d gone on trial, and most definitely not the judge. My attorney had more than a few reservations about my story. Ms. Allerton hadn’t said as much. She didn’t need to. I saw it in her eyes, could tell by the way she shuffled and reshuffled her papers, as if doing so might shake my lies clean off the pages, leaving only the truth behind in her inky, royal blue swirls.
After our first meeting I’d concluded she must’ve known early on—before she shook my hand with her icy fingers—that I was a liar. Before she’d walked into the room in shiny, four-inch heels, she’d no doubt decided she’d heard my excuses, or a variation thereof, from countless clients already. I was yet another person claiming to be innocent. Another criminal who’d remained adamant they’d done nothing wrong, it wasn’t their fault, honest, despite the overwhelming amount of evidence to the contrary, a wall of impending doom surrounding me.
And still, at the time I’d believed the only reason Ms. Allerton had taken on my case pro-bono was because of the amount of publicity it gave her firm. Reducing my sentence—for there would be one—would amplify her legacy as a hot-shot lawyer. I’d accepted her help. There was no other option. I needed her knowledge, her expertise, saw her as my final hope. I now know her motivations were something else I’d miscalculated. All hope extinguished. Game over.
If I’m being fair, the judgements Ms. Allerton and other people had made about me weren’t completely wrong. I had told lies, some, anyway. While that stripped away part of my claim to innocence, it didn’t mean I was entirely guilty. Not of the things everybody said I’d done. Things I’d had no choice but to confess to, despite that being my biggest lie of all.
But I’ll tell you the truth. The whole truth and nothing but. I’ll start at the beginning, and share everything that happened. Every last detail leading up to one fateful night. The night someone died because of me. The night I lost you, too.
I won’t expect your forgiveness. Our relationship—or lack thereof—will have gone way beyond that point. No. All I can hope for, is that my side of the story will one day help you understand why I did the things I did.
And why I have to do the things I’ve not yet done.

Excerpted from Sister Dear by Hannah Mary McKinnon, Copyright © 2020 by Hannah McKinnon. 
Published by MIRA Books

Author Bio: 
Hannah Mary McKinnon was born in the UK, grew up in Switzerland and moved to Canada in 2010. After a successful career in recruitment, she quit the corporate world in favor of writing, and is now the author of The Neighbors and Her Secret Son. She lives in Oakville, Ontario, with her husband and three sons, and is delighted by her twenty-second commute.
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Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Blog Tour: Review of Rebel Princess by Lynn Stevens

Author: Lynn Stevens
Publication Date: May 2020

REBEL PRINCESS by Lynn Stevens is a modern romance retelling of the Hunchback of Notre Dame. Fans of military romance, sweet love, and coming of age stories will enjoy this new adult romance. The next installment of the Modern Princess Collection is now LIVE!
 Only on Amazon + Read for FREE on Kindle Unlimited!

 I was born to rebel.
 Against love. Against authority. Against myself.
 Perfect precision, that’s how I planned my life. Dancing was my whole world. I wanted to be in the spotlight with all eyes on me, but recently, my heart’s pulled me in a different direction. Writing for the school paper has excited me in a way dance never has. Exposing truths trumps pirouettes and countless hours in the studio and being true to myself is more important than keeping dangerous secrets hidden.
 Getting close to Colin and his lacrosse buddies allowed me access to their secrets—but I had no idea how deep they went. On the brink of exposing them, I was set back. No sources, no boyfriend, and no way to get justice. No matter which angle I pursued, my story kept getting shut down.
 Until I met the guy with the scars. The one who helped me when I didn’t know what to do or who to turn to. He came into my life out of nowhere, saved me, and taught me to believe in myself. Then, when I finally did, he didn’t believe in me. I had to stand on my own two feet, fight for my values and for what I needed—for what I had earned—and learn that justice always comes with a cost.

Rebel Princess is part of the Modern Princess Collection.  This one is a Hunchback of Notre Dame retelling.  I admit, I haven't read the original story, so I have no context for this retelling.  Having said that I did ultimately enjoy Emerald's story.  I liked her character and her willingness to fight for what she believed in. I loved her decision in the end with what she published on the Gossip blog.  That should have been done a long time before.   I still feel like she got a raw deal in the end and would have loved to see what happened after the story was published.  I didn't feel like this one was as much of a romance, because I didn't see enough of Quinn and Emerald together.  I would have liked to see Quinn's point of view.  It would have helped me be more invested in the romance part.  I do recommend picking this one up.

About Lynn

Lynn Stevens flunked out of college writing her first novel. Yes, she still has it and no, you can't read it. Surprisingly, she graduated with honors at her third school. A former farm girl turned city slicker, Lynn lives in the Midwest where she drinks coffee she can't pronounce and sips tea when she's out of coffee. When she's out of both, just stay away.

Once upon a kiss, a modern romance becomes a fairytale.

The prestigious Camelot University comes fully equipped with elitist guys, a castle, and a Glass Ball, but these self-proclaimed princesses don’t need crowns to prove their worth. They’ve taken love and life into their own hands and written their own fairytale.

Follow seven of your favorite fairytale heroines as they find their happily ever after, in these standalone, contemporary romance novels. The ladies of Cam U are a dangerous combination of cute and badass, full of attitude and imperfections, and an innocence only fairytales can convey.

Want to keep up with all the Modern Princess Collection news? LIKE the Rewritten Fairytales Facebook page! 

This promotional event is brought to you by Forever Write PR

Monday, May 25, 2020

Blog Tour: Review & Excerpt of A Hidden Heir to Redeem Him by Dani Collins

Author: Dani Collins
Publisher: Harlequin
Publication Date: May 2020

She kept their child hidden…now the secret’s out!

Valentino Casale is outraged to find Kiara kept their daughter a secret from him for two years! Forever branded by his own illegitimacy, the hardened billionaire wants to do things differently…

Kiara could never regret the consequence of her one delicious night with Val. Even if he turned out to be every bit as cold-hearted as their night was hot! Yet behind Val’s reputation is another man—revealed only in their passionate moments alone. Could she give that man a second chance?

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My thoughts:

A Hidden Heir To Redeem Him is the first in the Feuding Billionaire Brothers series.  For the most part, the story kept me engaged enough to finish  it.  It had a lot of dramatic scenes as a lot of Harlequin books are known to have.  I didn't like Val all that much in the beginning, but as his story was revealed, I could almost understand why he acted  like a controlling douche.  I'm not usually a fan of the secret baby trope and I did feel bad for the way he was manipulated.  Kiara was, thankfully, not a wet blanket and did stick up for herself.

My biggest issue with the book was the feeling I had throughout that I was missing something.  I was surprised to see this was the first in a series.  I though it was the second. There seemed to be a lot of back story that I was missing. I had a hard time understanding the battle between the brothers at first because it seemed like the reader was supposed to already know.  I hope that in the second book, more of this conflict is explained and we see a resolution.   If you are looking for an entertaining read with lots of melodrama and sex, give this one a shot.

Excerpt, A HIDDEN HEIR TO REDEEM HIM by Dani Collins 

 “You knew she was pregnant? And you didn’t tell me?” he demanded of her.
“You were on your honeymoon.” His mother’s voice dropped to the syrupy, conciliatory tone that wheedled for him to take her side. “You didn’t need an ugly scandal.”
“Like the one I grew up in?” When had he last bothered to be angry? Truly furious? Maybe his last visit to this tower? Maybe it was the air in here that stoked his rage. The fetid stench of manipulation and jealousy and profound selfishness. “You live for making a scene. Blaming Niko for my shortcomings is your bread and butter. You could have used the baby for leverage all this time if you had— Oh, my God.”
Val hooked his hands on his hips and laughed drily toward the ceiling as he realized why she had preferred his baby be erased from existence.
“This is a new low for you, Mother.” He was un-characteristically, profoundly astounded. And sickened. “Or should I say… Nonna?”
“Do not…” she warned in shaken outrage.
“Oh, I will. Because your precious vanity sent her to him.” He pointed at Kiara then the folder rep-resenting the fortune that had been the reason for, and the bane of, his very existence.
This situation was abhorrently reminiscent of his childhood, when something clean and precious and his would be sullied and used as leverage and snapped apart in the struggle between his parents and his half brother and his father’s ex-wife, Paloma. Val’s wants and needs had never been part of any conversation. If they had, they’d been dismissed as irrelevant.
And Kiara had played along with all of that.
“Why did you tell her instead of me?” he demanded of Kiara.
Whatever culpability flickered into Kiara’s face was quickly schooled into something more facetious. “I guess I could have left a message with your wife?”
It was a darling effort at shaming him, but, “I’ve been divorced a year. You’ve had time.”
“There were circumstances.” She shifted uncomfortably. “Niko was ill and needed us there.”
“You’ve been living with him? This whole time?” If Val believed people were capable of true remorse, he might have thought the way Kiara bit her lip might have signaled regret.
He had played this game too long to believe she felt anything but glee, however, at claiming the pot of gold.
Walk away, he thought. Just. Walk. Away.
“He thought if you knew Aurelia existed, you would pressure me to leave the island instead of staying with him.”
Aurelia. It was the name of the villa in Venice where they’d spent their night together. The site of their lovemaking and, apparently, the conception of their daughter.
Every morning, when he gazed on Kiara’s sketch, he was back there on the bed with her, seated behind her in the rumpled sheets, teasing her into continuing with her study of the open balcony doors while he sampled the scent in her neck and tasted the smooth-ness of her shoulders and felt her breast rise and fall in growing excitement against his palm.
He swallowed, trying to dismiss any profundity in her bestowing that villa’s name on their child. He didn’t buckle to sentiment. It was a manipulation tactic. Everything was.
Even so, he couldn’t take his eyes off her as she turned her attention to his mother, showing no fear as she said baldly, “Niko didn’t want you or Paloma to know about her or about Scarlett’s pregnancy. He thought it would create more conflict than he could deal with in his weakened condition. Since he was terminal, we respected his wishes.”
It was so poetic, it bordered on sappy, but to keep the knowledge of his daughter from him for three years? He would never forgive any of them for this.
“We’ll wait for a DNA test before we continue this discussion.” Evelina took care to tuck her cashier’s check into her clutch. “Niko can’t overlook his son in favor of a child we’ve never seen. We’ll fight this.”
“You’ll be wasting your money,” Davin said. “There’s already a DNA test that proves Aurelia is Niko’s descendant. Her sample was correlated with the DNA test that proved Mr. Casale’s paternity. Niko was of sound mind. Further tests won’t change anything.”
Val didn’t need a test. He wasn’t so gullible as to take Kiara’s word, but his father had always been diligent about such fine points.
He didn’t care anyway, he assured himself. Not beyond how galling it was that Niko had gotten the last laugh, but so what? Val had never wanted offspring—one of the reasons his marriage had tanked—and he hadn’t wanted his father’s money, either. He had no desire to take responsibility for the child in possession of that fortune— Oh, wait. The girl was only entrusted with half. That meant any involvement he had with her would mean dealing with Javiero on some level, as well.
And all the while, his mother would continue to claw at him for her piece of the pie.
Definitely time to exit stage right. He certainly could. Kiara was financially equipped to meet the needs of his child. Nothing in his life had to change. In fact, his mother would become Kiara’s problem. The solution was elegantly simple and utterly freeing.
Yet, he remained where he was, coldly enraged. His insides were gripped by a wrath that swelled his chest with the pressure of a primal yell he couldn’t release.
He could hardly pick apart why this provoked such a volcanic rise of fury in him. It had something to do with the grotesque replay of history. While he’d been married to Tina, Kiara had been having his child, sentencing an innocent to the label he’d worn like a dead albatross until he was old enough to make damn sure he deserved the slur.
No. He might not have crafted himself into the most upstanding of men, but he was decent enough to pluck a child out of a toxic spill before she was lethally poisoned and scarred forever.
“Refuse that money,” he told Kiara. “My daughter will inherit my fortune, not his.”
“A minute ago you didn’t even want to know her name.”
“She can have mine,” he shot back. “You’re going to marry me. Today.”

About Dani Collins:

When Dani Collins found romance novels in high school she wondered how one trained for such an awesome job. She wrote for over two decades without publishing, but remained inspired by the romance message that if you hang in there you'll find a happy ending. In May of 2012, Harlequin Presents bought her manuscript in a two-book deal. She's since published more than thirty books with them and is definitely living happily ever after.

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