Blog Tour: Serendipity Summer by Laurie Kozlowski

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Today is my stop during the blog tour for Serendipity Summer by Laurie Kozlowski. There is a teaser and a tour wide giveaway.

Serendipity SummerTitle: Serendipity Summer
Author: Laurie Kozlowski
Series: Riverbend Way #1
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
Please Note–this book contains some adult language, partial sex scenes, and recommended to readers ages 18+ only.

Anna and her daughter, Katy, are uprooted from their Atlanta home when they become unexpected recipients of Rocky Top Inn, a family estate, in Riverbend Way, Tennessee. Anna loses patience with her ex’s demands while being harassed by his fiancee, a bonifide ice queen. The chance for a new beginning draws her into fulfilling an aunt’s dying wish while an overwhelming desire for her former boss, Jake Ivers, unravels any doubt that soul mates don’t exist.

While traveling through remote parts of the country as a wildlife photographer, Jake Ivers lands an assignment in the small mountain town of Riverbend Way. He soon finds himself wading in way over his head. Becoming the town handyman, consoling his nephew, being targeted by animals and threatened by an old lady with as much money as Bill Gates, was not part of his original plan. To top it off, there’s the issue of convincing Anna she has his heart.

Will their friendship last beyond a season or could this summer prove to be a stroke of serendipity?

excerpt teaser 3

Author PhotoAbout the Author:
Laurie Kozlowski resides in Northeast Georgia with her daughter and husband. Having small town roots, she’s intrigued with the charm, drama, and humor of the south, often weaving those themes into the fiction she writes. Her first contemporary romance book, Serendipity Summer, is the first of four books in the Riverbend Way Series. The Riverbend Way Series is contemporary small-town romance fiction. The series touches on serious modern day issues, a twist of earthy and sometimes bawdy humor, and a heavy dose of love. Laurie enjoys incorporating family-centered themes and stories including friendship, hope, and healing. When not writing, she loves to make music and jewelry, picnic near the river, or catch the latest comedy or drama flick at a local cinema. She hangs out mostly on Twitter @LaurieKozlowski when she isn’t caring for her daughter, writing, or driving her husband crazy.

Links:

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Blog Tour: Blue Phoenix series by Lisa Swallow

BP_Sale1
Today is my stop during the blog tour for The Blue Phoenix Series by Lisa Shallow. The entire BLUE PHOENIX series is on SALE for this week only! Summer Sky is FREE, and the other books are all .99¢ each! These are available exclusively through Kindle Unlimited. And there’s a tour wide giveaway. I feature Unplugged and a playlist for the book.

UnpluggedeBook.2Unplugged (Blue Phoenix #3)
by Lisa Shallow

Blurb:
“A rock star doesn’t return to his humble beginnings and whisk away the girl he kissed once. Especially if she has a four year old and her relationship status is ‘it’s complicated’.”

Blue Phoenix bass player, Liam Oliver discovers pictures of his fiancée with another man and his world crashes around him. He packs up his humiliation and hurt and flies back to his Welsh family home for Christmas.

Cerys Edwards once had pictures of Liam Oliver covering her bedroom wall. Her best friend’s big brother never gave her the time of day when they were growing up. When she was fifteen, he left town leaving Cerys with her fantasies. Now he’s back. The problem is, she has a daughter and a broken relationship of her own.

In the world of his Christmas past, Cerys and Liam reconnect. Are they two hurt people looking for comfort in a time of heartbreak or does Cerys have a place in Liam’s future too?

Months later and unplugged from his Blue Phoenix lifestyle, Liam reconnects with Cerys. He discovers Cerys’s world is full of complications he never expected – including Ella’s father who isn’t happy about being replaced by a rock star.

Unplugged is more than a rock star romance. Liam isn’t dark and brooding like Dylan, or a bad boy like Jem but a fiercely loyal man with a big heart. This is a story of love, family and unexpected bonds made that can’t be broken.

This is book three of the Blue Phoenix series. It can be read as a standalone but has minor spoilers for books one and two.

Happy Young Couple in Winter Park

BS_UnpluggedBanner

Playlist Unplugged

1. Liam’s bassist hero and inspiration is Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers and I think this song sums up how he feels when he’s in California watching his life fall apart and all he wants is to see Cerys again.

“The secret I’ve kept locked in my heart since Christmas can’t stay hidden. Cerys touched me in ways Honey never did and there has to be a reason why. If we’d really just been two hurt people looking for comfort, the need to see her wouldn’t have obsessed my thoughts for the last two weeks.”

Under the Bridge – Red Hot Chili Peppers

2. Cerys isn’t the only girl who steals Liam’s heart in this book. He builds a snowman with Cerys’s daughter, Ella, although he’s not keen on the song.

“I like you,” says Ella as she watches Liam place the head on the snowman’s body.
“Why, thank you, little lady,” he says in a false American drawl.
Ella suddenly hugs Liam around the leg and he looks down in surprise before glancing at me. Now he’s out of his depth as his arms hover over whether to hug the girl back or not. ~ Cerys in Unplugged

Do You Want to Build a Snowman
www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-zXT5bIBM0

3. This is the book where we first hear Jem’s real name too and more of a hint about Bryn’s weird sense of humour

“How’s Jeremy?” I can’t believe she still calls him this. Jem hasn’t been Jeremy since he was in primary school, apart from if we want to annoy him. If Bryn really wants to piss Jem off, he sings him the Pearl Jam track of the same name. ~ Liam in Unplugged

Jeremy ~ Pearl Jam

4. This is also the first book where Ruby Riot feature, as Liam takes Cerys on a date to one of their local gigs. Ruby makes quite an entrance.

I’m interrupted by a girl arriving in the bar. ‘Arriving’ is a mild way of putting the entrance of the tall, skinny girl. She crashes through a side door and stomps in motorcycle boots across the room. Dressed in a short black dress barely covering any of her long legs, the girl’s hair shines scarlet red as it catches the light of the bar. ~ Cerys in Unplugged

She’s Thunderstorms ~ Arctic Monkeys

5. Cerys is a long-time friend of Liam’s sister and four years younger than him. When she hung out with his siter, Louise, they used to listen to Blue Phoenix rehearse.

“Blue Phoenix rehearsed at Liam’s house. I got subjected to their early stuff and believe me, it wasn’t good.”
“I don’t believe that! They’re an amazing band.”
“Once they started playing their own stuff, it improved. Marginally. When you’ve heard ‘Stairway to Heaven’ rehearsed on repeat for two hours, it doesn’t sound so good anymore.”
~ Cerys in Unplugged

Stairway to Heaven ~ Led Zeppelin

6. Well, there has to be a rock ballad…. I think this could be the song playing in the final scene of the book too (no spoilers!)

“Every time you listen to my heart, I want you to remember one thing. Until the day my heart stops, it belongs to and beats for you – always remember that.”
Cerys burrows further into me, pressing her face harder against my chest as if burrowing further into my heart and soul. She doesn’t need to. She’s there, always.

I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing ~ Aerosmith

Full Playlist for the Books

summer skySummer Sky (Blue Phoenix #1)
by Lisa Shallow

Blurb:
Sky changed her life for a man once, and she has no intention of doing it again – even if he is a six foot, tattooed rock god who makes a mean bacon sandwich.

Sky Davis is fed up of boyfriend Grant taking her for granted and when she comes home to find him wearing a girl, Sky suspects the relationship is over. She takes an unscheduled holiday and leaves the life (and guy) she hates behind.

Rock star Dylan Morgan is struggling with fame and infamy, sick of his life being controlled by other people. Dylan cuts his hair and walks away from his role as lead singer of Blue Phoenix, leaving chaos and speculation behind.

Outside the English seaside town of Broadbeach their cars and worlds collide.

Sky decides Dylan is an arrogant guy with too many tattoos, and Dylan is amused by the smart-mouthed girl with no idea who he is. Dylan and Sky soon discover they’ve travelled to Broadbeach for the same reason – to escape from reality back to a place with happy childhood memories.

Losing themselves in a world where they know nothing about each other, Sky and Dylan begin a holiday romance that soon heats up their rainy English summer.

Fantasies can’t last forever and when reality crashes the party, Sky isn’t sure she wants to be more than his ‘summer Sky’.

Returning to the real world and public scrutiny isn’t their only problem. Blue Phoenix lead guitar player, Jem Jones, has a reason for wanting Sky out of Dylan’s life, and is determined to come between them. Some things won’t stay hidden, even when they’re paid to ‘go away’.

Summer Sky is a romance where occasionally more than the bacon sizzles. This is the first in the new ‘Blue Phoenix’ series of contemporary rock star romances.

*Please note this is not a standalone and has a cliffhanger – Sky’s and Dylan’s story continues in Falling Sky (Blue Phoenix #2)

Summer Star (Blue Phoenix #1.5)
by Lisa Shallow

Falling Sky (Blue Phoenix #2)
by Lisa Shallow

Rising (Blue Phoenix #4)
by Lisa Shallow

Reverb (Blue Phoenix #5)
by Lisa Shallow

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About the Author:
Lisa is an Amazon bestselling author of contemporary and paranormal romance. She is originally from the UK and moved to Australia in 2001. She now lives in Perth, Western Australia with her husband, three children, and Weimaraner, Tilly, who often makes appearances on Lisa’s social media.
Lisa’s first publication was a moving poem about the rain, followed by a suspenseful story about shoes. Following these successes at nine years old there was a long gap in her writing career, until she published her first book in 2013.
In the past, Lisa worked as an English teacher in France, as an advertising copywriter in England, and ran her own business in Australia. Now she spends her days with imaginary rock stars.
She lived in Europe as a child and also travelled when she left university. This has given Lisa stories which would sound far-fetched if she wrote them down, and maybe one day she will. These days, Lisa is happy in her writing cave, under Tilly’s supervision.

Links:

There’s a tour wide giveaway, for a chance to win enter the rafflecopter below:
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Blog Tour: Protecting the Prince by Dana Volney

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Today is my stop during the blog tour for Protecting the Prince by Dana Volney. I’ll share my review with you and there’s a tour wide giveaway.

Protecting The Prince FINAL coverTitle: Protecting the Prince
Author: Dana Volney
Series: standalone
Rating: 4 stars
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Links:

Blurb:
Eliam Prince is finally where he wants to be in his late father’s shipping enterprise: at the helm and ready to navigate. However, when a mysterious car tries to run him off the road on his first day as CEO, it’s clear he needs a personal bodyguard—even if the idea annoys him to no end.

Winter Wyn has built a thriving personal security business after surviving a horrific tour in the Middle East. Eliam is just a routine middle-of-the-night call—until she arrives at his penthouse, where it’s clear her strict policy of not mixing business and pleasure with her clients is in serious trouble. Keeping this man safe—from sabotage, blackmailers, assassins, and his own stubborn pride—isn’t nearly as hard as protecting her own heart.

But as the stakes rise, Eliam and Winter have no choice but to break all the rules if they want to survive. Fans of Castle will love the sparks that fly on this most unlikely couple’s journey to their happily ever after.

My Review:
Eliam Prince has only just managed to take back control of his family business from his step-dad Franklin when an attempt is made on his life. His Head of Security calls in an ex-military subordinate of his to provide extra personal protection. Cue the arrival of Winter Wyn and her team of specialists. The book describes the efforts made to protect their high-profile client, and there is plenty of action, twists and turns, and suspense to propel the plot along.

I enjoyed both main characters and they each had their own issues to deal with. They are instantly attracted to one another and it doesn’t take much for them to cave to that attraction. To be fair, their lives are at stake and they need to draw comfort from one another in order to survive. I wasn’t sure about them as a couple at the start, but I believed in it by the end. There’s a decent smattering of smoldering scenes to liven things up.

The writing is good, the pacing is consistent, and the words flowed smoothly. This was a very enjoyable, quick read. The only issue was the villain of the piece: it’s pretty obvious who it is and I would have preferred more intrigue around the culprit’s identity. But it didn’t dent my enjoyment at all and I thoroughly enjoyed this read.

I’d like to thank the publisher and Inkslinger PR for providing a review copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the Author:
Dana Volney lets her imagination roam free in Wyoming where she writes romances and helps local businesses succeed with her marketing consulting company. Surrounding herself with good friends and family, Dana thrives on moments and memories created with loved ones, especially while baking. Not possessing the natural ability to want to cook every day, she still enjoys watching culinary shows while eating take-out. It helps her to dream up sweet treats and sexy men. Dana is bold, adventurous and, by her own admission, good with plants, having kept a coral cactus alive for more than one year. Find Dana Volney at www.DanaVolney.com , on Facebook at
www.Facebook.com/DanaVolney , on Twitter @VolneyVentures, and Goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/DanaVolney .

Links:

There’s a tour wide giveaway, for a chance to win enter the rafflecopter below:
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Review: My Forever Valentine (Due South #5) by Tracey Alvarez

My Forever ValentineTitle: My Forever Valentine
Author: Tracey Alvarez
Series: Due South #5
Rating: 5 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
Love small town romance and Happily Ever Afters?
Dive into the Due South world to find out what your favourite characters are doing to celebrate Valentine’s Day with these four short and sweet romance stories.

Shaye & Del
Does Del’s stay in hospital after donating a kidney to his dad mean a Valentine’s Day spent alone? Not if his sexy fiancée, Shaye, can pull off some ninja moves and sneak into his room for a little romance…

Piper & West
Piper attempts to cook a Valentine’s dinner for two—guess how well that’ll turn out? But the results are a little unexpected…

Carly & Kip
An overnight hike on the beautiful Rakiura track is not what Carly had in mind for a romantic evening with her hottie barman. Kip, however, has an ulterior motive…

Kezia & Ben
Nothing will go wrong…the most dangerous phrase in the English language, especially when used to describe a Valentine’s Day surprise for Kezia and Ben.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Because these four short stories of approximately 3,000 words each contain spoilers, they are intended to be read and enjoyed after the first four Due South Novels:
In Too Deep (Book #1)
Melting Into You (Book #2)
Ready To Burn (Book #3)
Christmas With You (Book #4)

My Review:
Another stomping good read – short, but sweet and sexy.

Shaye & Del and Kip & Carly are my fav couples from this series and I especially loved their short stories. Ben and Piper witnessing Shaye’s special Valentine’s treat for Del was hysterical. So funny.

There isn’t much else I can say without giving too much away. These are great little teasers for those readers who may not have read the series yet, though you should read all the other books first to maximise the reading enjoyment.

The first book, In Too Deep, is free to download from Amazon and if you sign up to the author’s mailing list you will receive book 2 for free (Melting Into You.)

I highly recommend this well-written series. Love these books! (Fan-girling all over the place)

Review: Christmas with You (Due South #4) by Tracey Alvarez

Christmas with YouTitle: Christmas with You
Author: Tracey Alvarez
Series: Due South #4
Rating: 5 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
She’s a Holiday Grinch…

Carly Gatlin doesn’t want to spend another Christmas alone. With her beloved father gone, she’s desperate to be part of a family—so she’s spending the holidays with her step-brothers on Stewart Island. But even with sand, sun, and not a snowflake in sight, everything reminds her of what she’s lost. So no tree trimming, cookie baking, or kisses under the mistletoe for her, thanks. Especially not from Due South’s sexy bartender, Kip.

He’s a too-hot-for-his-Santa-suit killjoy…

Kip Sullivan’s moved hundreds of miles away from his family who’d like to see him married off before his next birthday—on Christmas Eve. Then ten days before the big event, his meddling relatives arrive en masse, and dear God, they’re planning to stay. With match-makers breathing down his neck, it’s becoming harder to ignore the temptation to unwrap Carly like a present under the tree.

The Kiwi barbecue isn’t the only thing sizzling this summer…

Kip agrees to help make Carly’s first New Zealand Christmas special. He’s got five holiday missions to complete—one involving a frisky fake reindeer—before he hopes to claim a mistletoe kiss…and maybe even Carly’s heart.

Christmas just isn’t Christmas without this spicy yet sweet Due South novella.

My Review:
This series is INSANELY good. I could gush buckets about it all day.

This book is every bit as brilliant as the other books in this series. I already loved Carly from Ready to Burn and I was looking forward to her story.

Kip has been mentioned in some of the other books as a bit of a ladies man but we didn’t know much else about him. Turns out, he is a really decent guy, and much less of the ladies man than most people think. Having grown up in a house full of girls, he knows how to relate to women and he is sensitive and caring. He is also HOTT (extra T worthy as Wendy Higgins would say) and Carly has been trying to avoid falling for him. All that changes when his delightful family turn up at Christmas time and set about match-making.

Tons of wonderful dialog and plenty of LOL moments make this a joy to read.

Tracey has an amazing ability to take a plot that could be considered quite simple and transform it into something magical and special.

Another sensational read. My only complaint is that it was too short and I could easily have devoured more. I’m a major convert now and I know I will continue to read this author’s work.

Review: Ready to Burn (Due South #3) by Tracey Alvarez

Ready to BurnTitle: Ready to Burn
Author: Tracey Alvarez
Series: Due South #3
Rating: 5 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
Love small-town romance with an unforgettable cast of characters? The Due South series will transport you to an unspoilt, wild island of the coast of New Zealand. Meet Shaye and Del…

Take one sassy Harland girl…

Shaye Harland, sous chef de-awesome, desperately wants the role of Due South’s head chef. Though a little out of her depth, she can totally cope with the extra de-mands if she can resist her future brother-in-law when he muscles in on her kitchen. The Hollywood wannabe is nothing but a troublesome distraction and he fries her sex-ometer to a crisp. But as far as romance? Forget it. Love, when she finds Mr. Perfect, will be as sweet as her to-die-for cookies.

Add a bad-boy from LA…

Del Westlake swore he’d never again set foot on the island he calls the “ass end of New Zealand.” With his reputation as a sous chef in one of LA’s hottest restau-rants trashed, and his estranged father’s restaurant needing a head chef, Del wants nothing more than to go in, get the job done, and get out. Except his feisty second-in-command carves herself a spot in his heart and completely incinerates his plans.

Watch the sparks fly as they burn it up in the kitchen…

Winning a spot on a TV reality show is just what Del needs to jumpstart his career back in the States. Nothing can get in the way of him winning—not even the woman whose trust he’d destroy if she discovers his secrets. But with a film crew capturing the explosive kitchen chemistry between them, will his bad-boy ways rear up and ruin his shot at becoming Shaye’s Mr. Perfect?

My Review:
Wow! What a mind-blowing book! Easily my favorite of all the books I’ve read in this series so far.

Ready to Burn has everything I adore in a book: Sublime writing, witty dialog, brilliant character development, stunning world building, strong emotions & relationships, lots of hot, steamy romance, and a fast-paced plot. There is nothing I would fault in the slightest.

Del Westlake has burned his bridges in LA so when an opportunity presents itself to go home, he can’t turn it down. Especially because it may well allow him restart his chef career in Chicago. Del is hiding behind his fair share of demons and it takes a very special lady to crack his nut. (Ahem!)

Shaye has been one of my fav characters in this series to date so I was really looking forward to reading this book. She is warm but sassy, strong yet vulnerable; particularly to Del’s charms.

They spark off each other at the start, and Shaye’s nose is understandably out of joint when she finds out Del has been hired temporarily as Head Chef, a position she believes she can easily fill. However, she quickly falls for Del’s Hollywood bad-boy charm and is soon in deep over her head.

I loved Del and Shaye as a couple and really enjoyed how Del transformed his whole attitude on life by the end of the book, even opening up to his family about the demons that have been torturing him. He was a great leading man.

I also adored the reality-TV theme, it added an interesting dimension to the story.

There was some really funny, laugh out loud moments in this book, like this bit: “Her revenge was squeezing your bum and letting you put a tongue in her ear? Sounds like cruel and unnecessary punishment.”

All in all, a truly amazing read. I’m only sorry I read it so quickly. I wish I could wipe my brain and start over, to relish the enjoyment all over again.

This is an excellent series and I highly recommend it.

Review: Melting into You (Due South #2) by Tracey Alvarez

Melting Into YouTitle: Melting into You
Author: Tracey Alvarez
Series: Due South #2
Rating: 4.5 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
Big, sexy men who don’t relate well to kids need not apply…

Kezia Murphy plays her widow card well. When you don’t trust people not to let you down, it’s easier to not get involved—and getting involved with a man who makes her skin sizzle just by looking at him would be una pazzia—crazy! Four years ago while Kezia’s daughter, Zoe, battled leukaemia, a tragic accident stole her husband’s life. Starting over in the little town of Oban where she’s adopted into the close knit community on Stewart Island, Kezia and her daughter are all the family the other needs. Except Zoe yearns for more.

New Zealand’s worst candidate for instant fatherhood…

Ben doesn’t do gooey emotional stuff. He doesn’t do cosy home and family. And he sure isn’t the big teddy-bear Kezia Murphy, the woman he secretly fantasises about, thinks he is. So when Jade, his surprise eight-year-old daughter arrives on his doorstep, he’s a D-minus student struggling to pass a crash-course in parenting.

They’ll either melt or raze their lives to the ground…

When the sparks of attraction between Kezia and Ben fan into an inferno, Ben doesn’t know how much longer the layers of resistance around his heart can resist melting into the gooey mess he fears. The more he fights it the harder it is to make the choice that will destroy the family he now longs to claim.

My Review:
Melting Into You is a great second book and another wonderful addition to this series.

I really love Tracey’s writing style and the quality is of a very high standard. I enjoy the small tight-knit rural community setting and I think it’s amazing that Tracey can write so many fantastic stories within such a small world. But she pulls it off with aplomb.

Ben Harland is a typical long in the tooth bachelor, a real live Neanderthal Man. He grated on my nerves a bit at the start, but I quickly warmed to him. His progression is heart-warming and I loved his loyalty toward his daughter at the end of the book. The two girls were so cute in this book and it really appealed to my maternal side.

Kezia is battling some pretty big insecurities, and she is terrified of relying on any man again. With Ben’s help and some prodding from her friends, she learns to overcome them.

It’s a beautiful love story – two guarded people opening their hearts and deciding to share a family life together.

Another fantastic read.
Actual Rating: 4.5 Stars

Excerpt Blast: To the Stars (Thatch #2) by Molly McAdams

To The Stars - Excerpt Reveal banner
Today is my stop during the excerpt blast for To the Stars (Thatch #2) by Molly McAdams. I share an excerpt from this book.

To The Stars - coverTitle: To the Stars
Author: Molly McAdams
Series: Thatch #2
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
In the second book in New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Molly McAdams’ Thatch series, Knox Alexander must convince his long-time love Harlow Evans that they’re meant to be together.

He promised to wait for her.
She told him he was wasting his time.
Not waiting for him ended up being the biggest mistake of her life.

When they were younger, Knox Alexander swore to Harlow Evans that he would wait for her to turn eighteen so they could be together. But that was three and a half years away, and Harlow couldn’t ask him to give up all the fun and thrills of going away to college for her. As the years passed, Knox remained a constant in her life—whether she liked it or not—but when her eighteenth birthday came around, Harlow’s heart belonged to someone else.

Every day for the last four years, Harlow has been haunted by that fateful choice. And though he may appear unaffected by what happened in their past, Knox has always tried to fill the void Harlow left. But when he comes stumbling back into her life and refuses to leave, will Harlow finally let him into her heart…?

Excerpt Reveal: To The Stars by Molly McAdams

Don’t miss the first book in the series!
Letting Go - coverTitle: Letting Go
Author: Molly McAdams
Series: Thatch #1
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
In the second book in New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Molly McAdams’ Thatch series, Knox Alexander must convince his long-time love Harlow Evans that they’re meant to be together.

He promised to wait for her.
She told him he was wasting his time.
Not waiting for him ended up being the biggest mistake of her life.

When they were younger, Knox Alexander swore to Harlow Evans that he would wait for her to turn eighteen so they could be together. But that was three and a half years away, and Harlow couldn’t ask him to give up all the fun and thrills of going away to college for her. As the years passed, Knox remained a constant in her life—whether she liked it or not—but when her eighteenth birthday came around, Harlow’s heart belonged to someone else.

Every day for the last four years, Harlow has been haunted by that fateful choice. And though he may appear unaffected by what happened in their past, Knox has always tried to fill the void Harlow left. But when he comes stumbling back into her life and refuses to leave, will Harlow finally let him into her heart…?

Molly McAdams - author picAbout the Author:
Molly grew up in California but now lives in the oh-so-amazing state of Texas with her husband, daughter, and fur babies. When she’s not diving into the world of her characters, some of her hobbies include hiking, snowboarding, traveling, and long walks on the beach … which roughly translates to being a homebody with her hubby and dishing out movie quotes. She has a weakness for crude-humored movies and fried pickles, and loves curling up in a fluffy comforter during a thunderstorm … or under one in a bathtub if there are tornados. That way she can pretend they aren’t really happening.

Links:

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Release Day Blitz: Just One Kiss (Black Alcove) by Jami Wagner

Just One Kiss RDL Ban
Today is my stop during the release day blitz for Just One Kiss (Black Alcove) by Jami Wagner.

justonekiss-wagner-ebookTitle: Just One Kiss
Author: Jami Wagner
Series: Black Alcove
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
A first kiss is hard to forget—and Kelsey Brian’s just walked into the bar where she works and isn’t planning to leave anytime soon. It figures. With her last semester of college finally here, Kelsey can’t wait to finish the year smoothly and start a new chapter. She doesn’t need to drive over yet another bump in the road.

Ethan Connelly has spent most of his adult life trying to be accepted by his father, and now he has the chance to make him proud. He’s also just stepped into another chance with the girl who got away. Deciding who matters most to him isn’t an easy choice. If he picks his father, he’ll lose her again—if he picks her, everything he’s worked for will be for nothing.

Can Kelsey learn to trust him, or will Ethan’s secret of why he’s really back in town tear them apart?

Excerpt:
“Well, I’ll be damned, Kelsey Brian showed up to work before me. Now I’ve seen it all.” Logan struts into the bar like he owns the place and lets out a low whistle. “To what do we owe the pleasure?”
I roll my eyes, but Sara just stands there with a silly smile on her face. Logan has one of those personalities that you can’t help but love. Just the tone of his voice and his own smile can improve a girl’s mood in less than a second. Not to mention his shaggy, dark blonde hair, blue eyes, and athletic build. He would be a catch in more ways than one. I think Sara is finally figuring it out.
“It’s not what, it’s who,” Sara coos. Warmth creeps up my neck and into my cheeks. Logan’s eyes go wide.
“Dude, are you serious? Someone has finally cracked the ‘I hate boys’ phase we thought would last forever.”
“It’s not a phase,” I interrupt. “I just find it hard to trust someone now.”
Sara’s face lights up as she slowly nods her head up and down. “And stop calling us dudes.” She laughs, pointing at Logan.
“Wait a minute…does this have anything to do with Ethan?” Logan suggests, folding his arms in front of him.
“Oh, I bet it does,” Sarah says.
Logan reaches his arm over the counter, his palm flat, and Sara gives him a high five. It’s like I’m not even here. How does Logan know about Ethan anyway? I just found out yesterday.
“He called me this morning, wanted to get together but something came up, said he needed a rain check.” Logan shares this piece of information as he joins us behind the bar. I continue with my side work and listen to them at the same time.
“Yeah, well, it better be for something good because he said he was going to be late.”
He probably went to change his shirt, but I’d be okay with him not changing his shirt and just forgetting about it altogether.
“Hello? Earth to Kelsey!”
I look up from—wait. Was I just staring at the sink water this whole time?
“What’s your deal?” Sara asks.
“She knows something,” Logan answers.
They both study me with their full attention. I crack under the pressure. It only took two seconds, but it’s always hard to keep things from Sara. Then you add Logan, and there’s no hope. They make a strong team.
“Alright, so I may have seen Ethan once or twice since yesterday.” That sounds good enough. I turn with the intention of filling the sink at the other end of the bar, but Sara grabs my arm. I keep my eyes pinned to the floor.
“And…?”
“And…I might know why he’s late?”
“Is that a question?”
My face wrinkles up. I want to avoid this whole conversation. Treat it just like a Band-Aid, Kelsey. One quick pull and it’s over.
“I may have kicked him in the face, given him black eyes, hit him with my car door, and burned him with coffee right before I got here.” I shrug. “Hence no coffee.”

Jami WagnerAbout the Author:
JAMI WAGNER was born in Wyoming. Still living in the Cowboy State, Jami and her boyfriend are currently writing their own love story with their yellow lab.

Jami enjoys writing New Adult and published her debut novella Date in the Dark in 2015.

Visit and connect with Jami at www.jami-wagner.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AuthorJamiWagner, on Twitter at @Jami_Wagner, or on Instagram at @JAMIWAGNER_.

Links:

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Review: In Too Deep (Due South #1) by Tracey Alvarez

In too DeepTitle: In Too Deep
Author: Tracey Alvarez
Series: Due South #1
Rating: 4 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
She vowed never to return.

To save her brother from financial ruin, Piper Harland must do the one thing she swore she’d never do—return to the tiny island home-town where Ryan “West” Westlake crushed her heart. Piper is tough, resilient and a little wild—much like the remote and beautiful Stewart Island where she grew up. As a cop who’s part of the elite New Zealand Police National Dive Squad, bringing the dead back to their families still doesn’t stop the guilt she feels over her father’s drowning death. Now nine years later she’s obligated to return to a hostile community as the outsider, and forced to work with the man who was once her best friend and first lover.

She’s a risk he can’t take.

West is an Island man, through and through. As owner of the local pub, he lives and breathes the local community, and sure as hell can’t imagine living anywhere else. But most of all he refuses to ever fall for a woman like his flighty mother. He lost Piper once to give her the chance to fulfil her dreams of becoming a cop. But now she’s back for an unexpected six week visit to help her brother—his best mate. Maybe West wants her a little bit, maybe he can’t resist the temptation to tease and touch her, but can he fall in love with such a flight risk?

Saying goodbye the second time might just destroy them both.

My Review:
I really enjoyed this book and I’m definitely going to continue the series.

I loved the writing, strong characterization and worldbuilding. Initially, I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy a small, rural community setting but the author wrote it so well that you couldn’t help falling in love with the place.

Piper and Ryan (West) have spent years dodging each other and as the story develops we being to understand why. The author skillfully builds longing and angst and I really felt the emotions of both characters. I felt it dragged a little in the middle and I thought I’d die if they didn’t get their act together.

Both characters develop and grow throughout the story and eventually learn to let each other in. It was really sweet and romantic (and there’s plenty of steamy action too!)

The ending was a bit too cheesy for me (though I’m not usually opposed to a bit of cheese)and the only other thing I didn’t like was the slight change in perspective and tense on occasion which was jarring. Minor complaints though. For a debut novel, I think it’s very accomplished, and I look forward to reading more from the author.

Thanks to Tracey Alvarez for running a promo on this book which enabled me to pick up a copy for free. I’ve already downloaded the second installment and I look forward to getting stuck in.