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Saturday, 28 February 2015

The Design (A Heart Novel) by R.S. Grey - Review





Title: The Design
Author: R.S. Grey
Release Date: March 1, 2015
Find on Goodreads
 
 

Synopsis:

 
 
Five minutes until the interview begins. 
Fresh on the heels of her college graduation, Cameron Heart has landed an interview at a prestigious architecture firm.
Four minutes until the interview. 
She knows she’s only there because the owner, Grayson Cole, is her older sister’s friend.
Three minutes. 
For the last seven years, Grayson has been the most intimidating man Cammie has ever had the pleasure, or displeasure, of being around.
Two Minutes. 
But the job opportunity is too good to pass up. So, Cammie will have to ignore the fact that Grayson is handsome enough to have his own national holiday. 
One.
After all, she shouldn’t feel that way about her new boss. And, he will be her new boss.
“I’m not scared of you,” I said with a confident smile.
“Perhaps we should fix that, Ms. Heart. Close the door.”
 
 

Buy Links:


Amazon US:



 

Excerpt:

 
 
I paused just outside of the front doors and took a deep breath, trying to get my bearings. I was twenty minutes early for my interview. My outfit was still wrinkle-free. My pad-folio was filled with extra copies of my resume and reference letters, and I’d rehearsed every possible question that Grayson Cole would ask:
Greatest weakness? My inability to settle for anything less than what I deserve. I’m stubborn and persistent.
The honest answer? My inability to overcome my schoolgirl crush on you even though you’re a self-righteous ass.
I would NOT be giving him the honest answer.
 

Author Info:

 
I am a lover of books, chocolate, reality TV, black labs, and cold weather. Seriously, if I had it my way, I would be curled up on the couch with all of those things... everyday.
I live in Texas where I spend my free time writing and reading. My favorite authors include Mindy Kaling & Jonathan SafranFoer. I'm a comedy geek and love all things "funny". Women like Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Mindy Kaling are definitely the biggest inspirations for my writing, though I think my work tends to skew a bit smuttier than theirs.

 

Kristine's Review:

Reviewed: February 2015.

RS Grey is quickly becoming one of my favourite authors, her ability to easily move between teenage romance and new adult, her characters quickly drawing me in, making me yearn for more about them, where I'm often left thirsting for more from these people, The Design is the answer to my prayers. In The Duet I fell in love with Brooklyn Heart and Jason Monroe, the perfect mix of city and country had me swooning, but the characters that had me intrigued were Cameron and Greyson, the fierce loyalty and deep friendship Greyson had with Brooklyn captivated me, but it was the fiery Cameron, with her snappy one liners and constant comedic relief that made me sure she was so much more than just a secondary character.
 
Seeing Cammie truly step into her own, to be the kind of heroine that makes it impossible not to root for her, one where you love her flaws and celebrate her wins, a heroine so fleshed out, so fully realised that she leapt right off the page. There's a tendency for authors to write the stereotype, the rich successful hero vs. the naive, young heroine. Grey however writes the story of a smart successful enigmatic business man and a young woman fresh out of university, her youth is where the similarities to the stereotype end, while Cammie may be young, she's world weary in a way that only someone who was forced to grow up quickly after the death of her parents can be.
 
 Cammie knows what it means to feel lost, alone, to feel displaced, trapped by grief, it was during one of these moments that Cammie found her career focus,  she found a purpose, it was the moment that she was able to see through her pain and grief and find an outlet for her restless energy. 

Where Cammie is feisty and determined, Greyson is generally the epitome of calm, cool and collected, he is almost impossible to ruffle, the few moments that it seems like Cammie has broken through his tough veneer, he recovers almost as quickly. Until he can't anymore, until fighting something that's as clear as day between them. 

There's something so real between these two, a tangible connection, a raw chemistry, but there's so much more than just a raunchy sex fest here, there's a story about a girl trying to find her way, and a man who's watched her from afar for years. A man who thinks he's got it all figured out, he's isolated, an island who depends on no one, and a girl who thinks she needs space and distance to be strong. The funny thing is, what they need might just be the one thing they never even considered. 

There's a beauty in two strong characters, characters who are only vulnerable to one another when they open themselves up to a chance together. But most of all what I loved about this story, was the question Grey poses, what if the thing you've always dreamt of isn't the right path for you, what happens when your dreams don't live up to your reality and you're left wondering if you can swallow your pride and alter your dreams. It was so easy to immerse myself in this story, in these characters, no sooner had I turned the last page, that I was itching to start it again, always a testament to the skill of the writer. Kudos to you RS Grey. 


 



Book 1: The Duet 

Friday, 27 February 2015

The Problem with Heartache by Lauren McKellar - Blog Tour




RELEASE DAY BLITZ
Title: The Problem With Heartache
Series: Crazy in Love #3
Author: Lauren K. McKellar
Genre: Contemporary Romance (New Adult)
Release Date: February 27, 2015
 
SYNOPSIS
The problem with heartache is that there’s no one-size-fits-all relief package. You can go to classes; you can try to embrace change. But when you wake up at two in the morning, a smile on your face because you’ve dreamt about the could have—the should have—nothing will console you.
Because seconds later, you remember.
And remembering can rip you apart.
***
Kate will do anything for her family. It’s why she took the job with Lee. It’s why she’s attempting to forget her pain. But it's hard to forget, when you're desperate to hold on. Even if Lee Collins is the perfect package.
Lee will do anything for the ones he cares about. It’s why he hired Kate.
It’s why he keeps his secrets, and it’s why he cannot, will not fall in love. Not with Kate—not with anyone.
Ever.
The one thing he can’t forgive.
The one thing she can’t forget
 
PURCHASE LINKS
#3 The Problem With Heartache

Kristine's Review: 
Reviewed: March 2015.

It's no secret that The Problem with Crazy utterly decimated me, it took me weeks, possibly months to recover from, the love I have for that book, for Lauren McKellar's words was and still is astronomical. I knew stepping back into Kate's world would be fraught with emotions, I was ready, prepared even, for anyone who has ever lost someone unexpectedly you know all to well the stages of grief, you know what it's like to wake up in the morning and have that split second of happiness before the crushing pain floods your memory. You know with a painful clarity what it's like to be smiling and laughing only to remember that that person is no longer walking this earth with you. There's a shroud of darkness and desolation that seems to hang over you, that invades your every thought making it almost impossible to move on. For McKellar to truly nail that with such eloquence, to make me as the reader FEEL every second of that is a testament to her talent. 

The Problem with Heartache is so much more than just a story about grief though, this is a story of hope, of survival, this is a story of letting go but not saying goodbye, because for anyone who has ever lost someone you know that memories live on long after death. 

There is so much humour in this story, so many moments that had me giggling and outright laughing, McKellar proves that life goes on, even when at times we don't want it to, she shows that there are days when it's hard just putting one foot in front of the other, and days that grief is more of a faded memory not a grey cloak dragging you down. 

In the aftermath of Lachlan's death, Kate is alive but she isn't living, survival has become her main focus, get up, make it through the day, wash, rinse, repeat, but when Lee Collins offers her an opportunity of a lifetime she is forced to step back into the land of the living. What follows is a story of two people recovering from the hurts of their past and actively making a decision to move forward with their lives. And that right there is the thing about heartache, about grief, you have to actively decide to want to move on, you don't have to say goodbye the memories but you do have to let the hurt go. 

Once again McKellar has taken me on a journey with her, she's effortlessly created a world I want to live in, with characters I truly admire, and despite the moments of pain she inflicted on my battle weary heart, she left me feeling stronger, she's shown that life isn't always unicorns and cupcakes, but that life can be amazing if you're willing to take a leap and be part of it. 





ALSO AVAILABLE
#1 The Problem With Crazy


 
#2 Eleven Weeks


 
EXCERPTS
Excerpt 1
“You. In.” She pointed to the room behind me, and I glanced over my shoulder. 
“In there?” I smirked again, but her cheeks didn’t get any redder, to my astonishment. “Is now really the time?”
She pushed against my naked chest, her steely eyes fixed on my face the whole time, then slammed the door behind us with her foot. 
“If you wanted some private time together, you just had to say so.” I joked, leaning back against the chair that was positioned in front of the mirror in my dressing room. 
“You think this is funny?” Kate asked, her head tilted to the side. 
“Actually … yeah.” I nodded and smiled again, not unkindly.
Kate looked down, and for one God-awful moment I thought she was going to cry.
Then, she did something better than crying. Holy mother of crap sticks, was this better than crying.
She raised her hands to the top of her black button-up shirt—and she undid the top button. Creamy, white skin is exposed, defined collarbones, teasing my eyes down to—
She undid another button. Holy fuck, what was Kate doing? Her cleavage heaved in front of me, and I got a hint, just a hint of her black lacy bra.
“It cannot be a coincidence that one man is shirtless in front of me six times in two weeks.”
I grinned. She’d counted.
That totally means she’s into it.
Then she did something that completely surprised me. Hell, it shocked the living daylight out of me. In one fluid movement, she grabbed the sides of her shirt and pulled, popping open her entire top and then shrugging it over her shoulders so she stood there in the world’s hottest black, lacy bra, skin-tight black denim jeans and these shoes—how the hell did I not notice them before?—that were red, high, and sexy as sin. 
I swallowed. “So … this is a revenge …” Swallow, “… strip?”
“This is me, trying to do something to get you to pay attention and listen when I ask you to do something.” Kate’s voice was honey as it melted into me.
I raised my hand to the back of my neck and rubbed at the muscles there that had suddenly become tight with tension. “Oh, I’m paying attention, all right.” I widened my eyes. There was absolutely no doubt about that right now. 
“Get back stage, Lee. Seriously. This is your last warning.”
I swallowed again, and felt the clamminess of perspiration beading my brow. Was it hot in here? It sure felt hot.
She stepped close to me, till her chest was almost touching my chest. Shit, she smelt like soap and hairspray and … apples. Delicious.
“I …” My gaze flicked to her lips, and I wondered if it would really be that bad if I kissed her. After all, that wouldn’t be promising her marriage, and maybe she’d be up for a casual thing. And her lips—they were so red, and plump, and—oh God, she just licked them with that sweet-as-hell little tongue, and—
The palm of her hand made contact with my face before I even registered her arm moving. Five elegant fingers stung my cheek and I jerked backward, clutching my face in pain. “What the hell?”
Kate walked over to where her shirt lay on the floor and picked it up, casually shrugging it on. She had the biggest shit-eating grin on her face, and I couldn’t help but give a little smile myself. I’d not seen her look so animated since she first boarded the bus. 
“I told you it was your final warning,” she said, doing up her buttons, then turned to the door, wrenching it open and making a sweeping gesture with her arm, allowing me passage through. “Now, Mr Collins, if you please.” 
“Thanks,” I mumbled, walking past her and out into the corridor. I passed Xander’s door, and a thought flashed through my mind. What if she stripped for all the guys to get them on stage? I couldn’t have her just—
“Lee?” The voice halted me in my tracks. I spun to face her.
She threw my black shirt at me. “Put some clothes on.”
 
excerpt #2:
“The truth is, you can’t … you can’t die now.” My voice was tiny, and I leaned closer to his hand, laying my cheek against it. “Dad, I … I need you here. I just spent two months overseas, and the six months prior I was practically in a coma myself, damn it; I couldn’t stand it if I lost that time we could have had together. I can’t lose you.” 
Tears leaked from my eyes and snailed their way down my cheeks, and I brushed them away with the palm of my hand. I didn’t know that I’d ever felt so desperate, so much desire for something for so long. 
People lost their loved ones all the time. I’d lost Lachlan. Lee lost Ryan. Johnny lost his whole family. 
But I didn’t want to lose again. God, please don’t make me lose again.
“Don’t die, Daddy.”
Two hours later, I walked out of emergency, bag wheeled behind me, and I caught the train home. Mum stayed at the hospital to be by Dad’s side. She wanted to be there always. Just in case …
It wasn’t until my head hits the pillow that I realise. I realise that I must believe in something after all.
Who else was I praying to if I didn’t?
 
About the Crazy in Love series
The Crazy in Love series consists of three titles: The Problem With CrazyEleven Weeks and The Problem With Heartache.
 
AUTHOR BIO



Lauren K. McKellar is an author and editor. Her debut novel, Finding Home, was released through Escape Publishing on October 1, 2013, and her second release, NA Contemporary Romance The Problem With Crazy, is self-published, and is available now. She loves books that evoke emotion, and hope hers make you feel.
Lauren lives by the beach in Australia with her husband and their two dogs. Most of the time, all three of them are well behaved.
 
AUTHOR LINKS
 
 
GIVEAWAY
There is a giveaway included for 3 x $10 Amazon gift cards + ebook copies of each book in the series, The Problem WithCrazy, Eleven Weeks and The Problem With Heartache
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Thursday, 26 February 2015

Slow Burn by K. Bromberg - Blog Tour & Review


slow burn - blog tour.jpg


Meet Becks & Haddie in SLOW BURN - the newest stand alone in the 
Driven Series by K. Bromberg! 
 

Blurb:

slow burn cover.jpg
 
ONE NIGHT. THAT'S ALL IT WAS SUPPOSED  TO BE.
Reeling from the sudden loss of her sister, Haddie Montgomery has sworn off relationships. All she wanted from Beckett Daniels was a sexy distraction to help her escape her pain for just a little while....There weren’t supposed to be any strings attached—so why can’t she shake the memory of that unforgettable night from her thoughts? Or the taste of his kiss from her lips?
No matter how hard Haddie tries to forget about him, Becks relentlessly tries to prove that she should start living for today. But she is determined to avoid romantic commitment, and she can always use her ex-boyfriend’s reappearance to help snuff out the slow burn within her that Becks has sparked....
Or will fate force her to realize that this kind of connection doesn’t come along very often and a chance at love is worth the risk?
 
slow burn - live.jpg
 
NOW AVAILABLE
slow burn teaser 4.jpg
 

 Excerpt

 
“Yeah. That’s one way to put it. Is there something else you called for besides trying to stick your nose in where it doesn’t belong?”
I open my mouth and then shut it, unsure how calling him because I just needed to hear his voice has devolved so quickly into this. Into me scrambling for words I can’t find to fix shit that doesn’t need fixing.
Because I don’t want this. Don’t want him.
“Well then, if you want to actually talk instead of pull this ridiculous bullshit, I’m here for you…but Had…? Whatever this is here…this passive aggressive crap? I don’t do too well with that. We had our one night. You made it quite clear you didn’t want anything more than that so you don’t get to call me up and question what I might or might not be doing with anybody else. You want no strings? Then cut the ties…but frankly I don’t think you know what the fuck you want so until you figure your shit out, I think it’s best that we say good night before we make a bad situation even worse.”
 “Wait!” Desperation rings in my voice in the single word. And I hate myself for sounding like this but I’m so lonely, so scared and just want the comfort I know he can bring me right now.
I wait for the sound of the dial tone to assault my ears. Wait for the incessant beep that reaffirms why I have barbed wire wrapped around my heart – painful but necessary. But there is nothing for a few moments until I hear the phone scrape against the stubble on his face.
And I wait…my throat burning with the tears I want to shed but am so sick of. The ones that no longer bring me comfort.
“I’m here, Haddie. I’m not going anywhere, okay?” The timbre of his voice carries his concern and sympathy to me through the line.
The incoherent sound I make is all I can offer in thank you to him for not hanging up on me. For not giving up on me. 
slow burn teaser 2.jpg 
 

Kristine's Review:

Reviewed: March 2015



I stumbled across the Driven trilogy by Kristy Bromberg almost by accident, I had the first two books in the series on my kindle, when I finally dove into them, I was awestruck, the story, the characters, I fell in love with the world Bromberg had created, these beautifully flawed characters spoke to me in a way I wasn't prepared for and the rest as they say was history.

One thing that stood out for me in the Driven trilogy was how intrigued I was by the secondary characters Haddie and Becks, while they regularly provided comedic relief, the dedication they showed to Rylee and Colton was inspired, they perfectly complimented their best friends, the love and support and sometimes even the good old fashioned ribbing they gave added to the story.

When Kristy released word of Slow Burn being written I yelped with glee, this was a book I couldn't wait for, with that my expectations were high, I adored these characters but Bromberg not only met my expectations but she surpassed them, cementing herself as a must read author for me.
slow burn teaser 3.jpg

Haddie had always been fearless throughout the Driven trilogy but time and death change people, the happy go lucky girl we knew wasn't there anymore, left in her wake was a woman who lived for the day, and would never allow someone to get close to her and in turn allow herself to feel anything other than lust and primal attraction for someone else.
Death has a way of changing the way you view the world, sometimes for the better, but unfortunately it can also turn you off to experiences others take for granted.

Becks is everything and more I hoped for, Colton's sexy as sin best mate, equal parts dirty talker and knight in shining armour, he is the kind of man you want to take home to meet the parents and lock in your bedroom and chain to your bed all at the same time.

There's a simplistic beauty in Bromberg's writing, she effortlessly draws me in, EVERY SINGLE TIME. The story of Haddie and Becks is heart breakingly beautiful, in equal measures I wanted to shake some sense into Haddie and hold her while she cried, where this story could of been cliché - a story of a woman running scared and man strong enough to chase her, Bromberg proves why she is a USA Today and New York Times Best Seller, her story of love and lust, of courage and conviction, of strength and perseverance and most of all about second chances, had me invested, enraptured and hanging on every word, as the pages flew I was overwhelmed that their story was coming to an end, but so incredibly grateful for the journey.
 
 

 

 
 
 
Slow Burn Playlist

 

About the Author:

kristy bromberg.jpg
 
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author K. Bromberg is that reserved woman sitting in the corner who has you all fooled about the wild child inside of her—the one she lets out every time her fingertips touch the computer keyboard. 

K. lives in Southern California with her husband and three children. When she needs a break from the daily chaos of her life, you can most likely find her on the treadmill or with Kindle in hand, devouring the pages of a good, saucy book.

On a whim, K. Bromberg decided to try her hand at this writing thing. Her debut novels, Driven, Fueled, and Crashed of The Driven Trilogy were well received and went on to become multi-platform bestsellers as well as landing on the New York Times and USA Today lists. Her other works include a short story, UnRaveled, and a companion piece to The Driven Trilogy titled Raced. She is currently working on three stand alone Driven novels, Slow Burn, Sweet Ache, and Hard Beat. She also plans to release a novel addressing the 10 year gap at the ending of Crashed in late fall 2015





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Wednesday, 25 February 2015

For Authentication Purposes by Amber L. Johnson - Review & Blog Tour


 






 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Presents...
 
For Authentication Purposes
by Amber L. Johnson

 

 
Release Date: March 5th , 2015
Genre: New Adult Romance / Contemporary Romance / Romance Erotica / Humor 
 ISBN e-book: 978-1-61213-387-4
 
Available from: AmazonKoboBarnes and Noble, and TWCS PH
 
 

SUMMARY


 
 
Dawn Sims has made a name for herself writing romantic fiction online. When she's pushed to try her hand at publishing, she thinks she has everything figured out. The only problem? She's never been in a relationship, especially one that has led her to finding The Big O. So much for writing what you know. Warner Green has had Dawn in his sights since she walked into his class in seventh grade. She broke his teenage heart not once, but twice, so seeing her in his night class at the local community college was an unexpected surprise. Accidentally reading her bad erotica on her laptop was a blessing from the Smut Gods themselves. It's clear she has no idea what she's writing about, but Warner does. In fact, he knows so much that he's willing to offer her his services. The deal is simple: teach the good girl from high school everything she needs to know to write from experience. If he gets to live out a fantasy or two that he's been harboring for almost a decade, then there's no harm in that either. The lessons turn more heated, and Dawn begins to question where Warner has learned his skills, but he's not ready to talk, until his past comes back to haunt him at the worst possible time. It shouldn't matter when it's for authentication purposes only.  
 
 
 

Kristine's Review:

Reviewed: January 2015.

There are books that tear your heart out, books that make you question everything you've ever believed, books that put you through the ringer, and others that leave you somewhere between hot and bothered and ready to hump the next thing that moves, while laughing your arse off. For Authentication Purposes is the latter. 

Eight Days A Week gave me my first taste of Amber L. Johnson, and I was instantly hooked, finding the perfect balance of humour, heat and heart can be tricky, but Johnson nailed it, so I had pretty hefty expectations for FAP (ha ha...yes I still giggle at that one)

Dawn Sims has been writing historical erotic romance on the sly, posting in author/reader critiquing groups online and getting feedback that she should be publishing her work. The idea that you write what you know couldn't be farther from the truth, Dawn knows nothing about maiden sea voyages, sexy leading men, and wild crazy soul consuming sex. When one time childhood friend, and present day nuisance Warner Green stumbles across Dawn's work, she might have finally found a no strings way to experience everything she writes about...for authentication purposes obviously.

What these two embark on had me simultaneously laughing my arse off, and fanning myself to cool down. I've read plenty of sexy books, but this one...yeesh...phroawwww...this was effortlessly sexy, two characters who can laugh with each other, at themselves, the storyline was original from start to finish and I was hooked from the first page, not because FAP was exactly what I expected, but because it was everything I wanted to read without even realising it.

Amber L Johnson continues to wow me, I know without a doubt that I'm in for something special when I pick up her books, her characters are real, stories are believable, and filled with everything I want in a book. The sexual chemistry, the attraction and banter, the heartfelt feels, the moments of sheer hilarity, this author has cemented her place as someone I will 1click with no hesitation.
 




 
 

EXCERPT


 
Come on. Say it. I know where youre going.
 
Shifting a little to look at him, I resisted the urge to kick him in the nuts and lick his neck at the same time. I mean he looked pretty hot sitting in my chair eating that muffin. Stupid handsome face and fornication hair paired with what I assumed were dirty jeans and a plaid flannel.
Fine. Im going to buy a vibrator with the money you gave me. Happy?” His smile was in full force now. Hell yeah, Im happy. Ecstatic, even.” He chewed around the pastry in his mouth and laughed. Ill come with you to make sure you get the right one. Oh, hell no. Being with you in a porn shop is on my list of Things to Never Do before I Die.  
 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 

 
A true child of music, Amber's parents surrounded her with the loudest beats they could find, molding her into a girl who found inspiration and meaning in lyrics and chords. Raised on John Hughes movies, Luck Dragons, and pirate ships, she dreamed of love and adventure. When Amber began to create her own world, she envisioned a place where Happy Ever Afters do exist. Since then, she has authored several romance novels, all of which focus on songs and the way they can touch people's lives. Music may not be able to fix a broken heart, but it can provide one hell of a soundtrack for healing. A full-time wife and mother with a full-time job, Amber finds her muse in everyday life and the people who bring her inspiration.        
 
Be sure to look for Amber's other books!

 


 
 
~~CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR~~
 
Praise for For Authentication Purposes
 
"Hot! Great UST, very funny, and I loved the characters. Another great one from Amber. " - Andrea