Blog Tours, Erotic Romance, Excerpts, Reviews

Blog Tour! Sneak Peek & Review: Tonic – Staci Hart

tonicTonic by Staci Hart
Series: standalone
Genre: contemporary romance
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Joel Anderson doesn’t take anything seriously.

Not his relationships, which have been few and far between since his brutal divorce. Not the drama of working in a tattoo parlor, which seems to be around every corner. When things get him down, he smiles and cracks a joke. But he’s not the kind of man you cross, or you’ll find yourself at the wrong end of his fists.

Annika Belousov takes everything seriously.

Like her job as a reality television producer, given that she typically has something to prove. Or her love life, which is defined by a series of requirements — affluent, ambitious, accomplished, to name a few. Definitely her family, who worked their whole lives to afford her every opportunity, a sacrifice she doesn’t take lightly. When she’s tapped to produce a reality show at Joel’s shop, she doesn’t think twice, just goes in for the kill, as if there were any other way.

The second Annika walks into Joel’s shop, he makes it his mission to crack her open, but she’s not having it. He’s all wrong — too crass, too hairy, too un-serious. But it doesn’t take her long to find out there’s more to him than smirks and tattoos. And what she finds could put her career and his heart on the line.

Not that Joel cares. Because for the first time in a long time, he’s found his tonic.

Purchase it

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA

Sneak Peek

“Let me see it.”

“What?” I blustered, caught off guard.

“Stand up and turn around. I want to see it.” I was too surprised and caught up in the moment to refuse, so I stood and turned, laying my palms on the armrests as I faced the back of the chair.

One hand rested on my hip.

My heart stopped as I wondered what the hell I’d gotten myself into.

I glanced over my shoulder, my gaze bouncing between his face —turned down too much to read —and his reflection in the speckled, antique mirror, which I couldn’t see much of either. His free hand moved to the waistband of my tailored pants, and his fingers hooked and tugged, pulling the band down low.

His thumb ran over where I knew the tattoo was, and I felt his breath. Every place where we connected spoke to me of ownership.

“You got this done here? In New York?” His voice was rough.

Mine wasn’t much better. “Yeah. In Brooklyn.”

“Let me cover it up for you. Give you something you’re proud of. Your skin …” He paused, and I wished I could see his face, read his mind. “This shouldn’t be here, not on you. Let me … I want to …” He had moved closer, his hand on my hip pulling me back into him slightly enough for me to not have noticed that the backs of my thighs were touching his, my back arched just enough, his breath hot.

And then, he disappeared. I stood, finding my hands were trembling, wondering where I was and how I’d gotten there. The shop was mostly empty —no one had seen, not that it would have looked like much from the outside. But from where I stood, I felt every single deliberate move like a telegraph, telling me exactly what he wanted to do without him having to finish the sentence.

His back was to me when I turned around, his face down —I couldn’t see it in the mirror over his cabinet of ink and needles as he dug around in the drawers, seemingly for nothing in particular.

“Let me know if you want me to draw something up.”

“Okay, I will.” I paused, not knowing what else to say, feeling like I should say something. But there was nothing that I could say. “Well, have a good night, Joel. I’ll see you tomorrow.”

He nodded, glancing at me in the mirror. “See you, Annika.”

I tried not to bolt out of the shop, but once outside, I admit it —I took off. I hauled up the stairs and into the office to grab my bag, grateful that Laney was already gone, and I texted my driver, asking him to pick me up a few blocks away so I could walk, put some distance between me and Joel, get the energy out of my body, through my legs and feet, into the pavement.

Review

Heat: ★★★★
Rating: ★★★

I then decided two things. One: My new mission in life was to make her laugh. Two: I’d crack her open if it was the last thing I did.

I struggled a little with this one. My main issue is that I felt it was quite a predictable read, and it took me a while to actually get into it. I wasn’t so keen on the minor mafia links, and some of the familial subplots dragged a bit for me. I’m also not a fan of the insta-love that was on the edge of happening from the very first couple of pages.

I had a feeling once I got a taste, I wouldn’t be able to get her out of my system for a long, long time.

That’s not to say it wasn’t a decent book – the chemistry and sex scenes were absolutely scorching, and I thought Hart’s characterisation of Annika and Joel was brilliant – they were largely complex characters and worked extraordinarily well together. I just couldn’t help but feel that the story I wanted to read was the destructive, explosive prequel of Joel and Liz.

Three steps and I was in his arms. Two heartbeats and I looked him into his eyes. One breath and I kissed him.

Slow and predictable, this wasn’t one of my top books by Hart, especially as I absolutely loved Wasted Words. It had its good moments, but I was expecting something a little funnier whilst wanting something a bit more emotional.

Erotic Romance, Release Blitz, Reviews, Romance

Out now! Review: Fastball – A.M. Hargrove & Terri E. Laine

fastballFastball by A.M. Hargrove & Terri E. Laine
Series: A Wilde Players Dirty Romance #2 (can standalone)
Genre: erotic romance
Themes: fling to thing, BDSM, sports
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Our relationship starts off like a bad joke.

A gorgeous guy walks into a bar and says to me, “Do you want to F#ck?” and damn if I don’t say yes.

And that should have been it—the punch line.

We never should’ve seen each other again.

Only we do.

Turns out sex on a stick, Ryder Wilde, is more than an orgasm-giver. He’s a player. Not just any either. A Major League Baseball pitcher. And damn, I want to be his catcher.

Except he doesn’t want to play any games or follow my rules:

No relationships.

No falling in love.

Because he’s used to winning … and wants to claim me as his prize.

His mission is to own me, body and soul, no matter how much I push him away.

Powerless to stop him, I can only hope my heart isn’t another casualty of his fastball.

Purchase it

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Review

Heat: ★★★★
Rating: ★★★

Reviewer’s note: although this can standalone, full enjoyment will come from having read the first instalment in the series.

Hargrove and Laine have written a wonderfully hot erotic romance here, with enough depth to it to keep it interesting and more than just sex with no plot. I found this perfectly paced, a fairly quick read that managed to progress and develop at the right speed without leaving anything out, and allowing understanding of the characters and where they were emotionally.

I loved how this dived straight in, immediately to steam with no set up, something a little refreshing and different to many of the other romances I’ve read recently. And although their relationship was clearly set up in the previous instalment, I didn’t feel like I really missed anything crucial.

“I would gift you the stars just to see them twinkle in your eyes because you’re more than this, Gina. More than the sum of your experiences.”

My main gripe with the story was the lack of honestly between the characters, making the angst seem a little forced at times. I was also unable to really tell the ages of these characters, as although I feel they were painted to be mid to late twenties, they really did act immaturely and have younger voices. And, despite the super steamy sex, I never quite felt the sexual tension between the two characters which was a shame for me. Neither did I really grow attached emotionally to either character.

Above all, although (like everyone) I’m a huge fan of a happily ever after, I found that everything came together a little too easily and perfectly towards the end.

Regardless of its drawbacks, I really did enjoy reading this, particularly with its BDSM twist, and will be going back to read the first one.

Reviews, Romance

REVIEW: Wildest Dream – R.C. Boldt

Wildest DreamWildest Dream by R.C. Boldt
Series: Teach Me #1

Genre: romance
Themes: friends to lovers, office romance, fling to thing, military
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Taken from his parents and bounced from one foster home to the next, former Navy SEAL turned math teacher, Callum “Mac” Mackenzie had a rough childhood. The only time he’s let himself get attached to anyone has been with his military “brothers”. He’s convinced he doesn’t know how to love and certainly doesn’t “do” relationships. He’s spent fourteen years in the Navy and now he gets to live out his other dream: teaching.

Her thirtieth birthday fast approaching, science teacher, Raine Thompson feels as if her time to find “the one” is running out. She knows life is short, especially after dealing with breast cancer two years ago, and wants to experience her own happily ever after. But is it in the cards for her?

Finally acting on the simmering attraction they have long ignored, Raine and Mac decide to have a fling and they discover what it’s like to have someone who knows you inside out also be the one who makes your body come alive.

But it was only temporary…

Purchase it

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Review

Heat: ★★★
Rating: ★★★★

When his hand grasped hers, feeling his firm, callused fingers, she swore she felt like their hands just…fit.

I describe a lot of the heartwarming books I read as “candyfloss” – that is, they’re delicious and yummy but somewhat devoid of substance. This was a little different. Yes, it was unbelievably heartwarming and romantic, including the typical big gestures, passionate monologues and a somewhat predictable storyline, but this had a little more depth to it than I was expecting. It touched on past scars of the military and cancer, having a lingering presence and driving the relationship between Mac and Raine forwards without the book and more light-hearted storyline drowning underneath the weight of them.

I also enjoyed the feisty nature of Raine, how her smile was described by Mac and yet when she needed, she could be absolutely cutting – something which came out during the few dates and confrontations peppered throughout these pages. The comedic value of these moments and one-liners was just gold. Similarly, although there were many characters, Boldt presented them in a way which was easy to keep track of who was whom, as well as creating this wonderful family vibe; for me, this is primarily where the extra depth came from. The strength of the friendships and relationships of this group of people, with the humour and chemistry between them all just cementing this as a fantastic novel, and hopefully a great series, if it continues to build upon this.

Something in his chest pinched as he watched her slowly descend the steps and walk toward him. God, the moonlight casting the glow over her in that dress and her hair being tousled in the gentle breeze nearly took his breath away.

Yes, it’s predictable, soppy stuff. But it’s also something well worth reading if you need a smile, or you need that horrific pinch in your heart when you really feel invested in watching a relationship come together. Now for the main test – would I read the sequel? Absolutely.

Blog Tours, Drama, Erotic Romance, Reviews, Romance

TOUR & REVIEW: Man of Honor – Diana Gardin

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Goodreads

The best rules are the ones worth breaking . . .

After his mother’s funeral, ex-Army Ranger Drake Sullivan wants only to disappear and drown his sorrows in whiskey. Then he sees her: Mea Jones. An untamed, sexy-as-hell whirlwind of energy. A few years ago, she showed him the best-and hottest-night of his life, then walked away without a backward glance. But he’s never stopped wanting more.

When it comes to guys, Mea has rules. One night. No dating. Whatever it takes to have control and keep it. With Drake, it’s all heat and hurt and hunger, and pretty much the opposite of control. And that makes him dangerous as hell. Mea has her own demons, and falling in love-or even in lust-is strictly a no-go proposition. But she soon finds out Drake is incredibly single-minded when it comes to getting what he wants. And he’s determined to be the exception to all her rules.

Excerpt

Her voice voice has gone all low and husky, and my dick instantly jerks to attention like it’s responding to a signal that only she knows. “Yeah?” The thudding of my heart is heavy, harsh, and violent.

She breathes out. “Yeah.”

She lifts her eyes, big, warm, and beautiful to meet mine. I’m hypnotized for a minute, just staring into them while she stares right back. With an uncontrollable surge of need, my body moves into autopilot and I just react.

I tug her wrist, pulling her off the back of the bike. When she’s standing beside me, a quick gasp escapes her as I pull her to straddle my lap.

And then she’s mine.

Her lips are mine, her mouth belongs to me.

And I pillage.

And I plunder.

At the insistent urge of my tongue, she opens to me with a moan. I pull back for a second.

“Sexiest sound I ever heard, baby.” I don’t want to scare her, but I can’t do much more than growl at this moment.

Claiming her lips again, I taste her and she’s perfect. Fucking perfect. She presses against me, forcing me to go deeper, to kiss her harder. When she grinds her hips against my rock-hard cock, I can’t take it anymore. Her hands sift through my hair. Rough, rough, rough.

I wrench away from her devilish mouth and grab her ass. The fact that any other rider could come along at any moment only amps me up, not slows me down. I lift her up, and when I plunge her back down on top of me she clamps down on her bottom lip with her teeth and drops her head into my shoulder.

“Drake,” she whispers. Harsh, harsh, harsh.

Then she bites down hard on my shoulder.

Review

Title: Man of Honor
Author: Diana Gardin
Series: Battle Scars #3 (can standalone)
Category: fling-to-thing, drama, erotic
Heat: 4/5
Plot: 3/5
Rating: 3.5/5

This was the first book I’ve read by Diana Gardin, and I very much enjoyed it. It had a really good balance of eroticism and drama, and well-defined characters with a serious and deeply interesting sub plot. I particularly liked the strength of Mea, and how she could hold her own.

My only real complaint is that I’m beginning to get frustrated by male characters’ cocks “twitching” or getting hard from pretty much nothing, and the immense alpha-male characteristics, particularly growling and possessiveness. Normally it doesn’t bother me so much but it felt a little over the top here.

Regardless, a very sexy read with a sensitive sub plot regarding abuse, and a fantastic female lead too. I’ll definitely be going back and reading the others.

Erotic Romance, Release Blitz, Reviews, Romance

RELEASE & REVIEW: Thor – L.P. Lovell

image

Goodreads

I’m selling your fantasy. Are you buying?

They say that love is the most powerful force in the universe. They’re wrong. Sex, lust, passion, these are the emotions which human beings crave. And they’ll spend any amount of money for a taste.

I’m the guy that makes your heartbeat rise with a look, your breath falter with a touch. It’s my job. My name is Thor Jameson and I’m a male escort. No, I’m THE male escort. My reputation is unrivalled and well deserved.

I’ve always been for sale, until the one thing I didn’t even realise I wanted was thrust in my face by chance. For once, I’m not selling, and she’s certainly not buying.

Purchase

US: http://bit.ly/ThorAMZNUS
UK: http://bit.ly/ThorAMZNUK

Review

Title: Thor
Author: L.P. Lovell
Series: Recherché #1
Genre: erotic romance
Heat: 4/5
Plot: 3/5
Characters: 3/5
Rating: 3.5/5

As ever, L.P. Lovell packs the heat on in this romance, delving into the escort genre. Although a sweet read, well-written and easy to devour, I found that it fell a little flat for me plot-wise. It was more like going through the motions of a cliched story, and although Thor was a wonderfully sexy, cheeky and arrogant man, his felt lie the only really developed character. The novel could have done with some extra length, to really make me believe in the romance, and more than just a half-hearted angst towards the end which really didn’t take much time or effort to overcome. Fun and lighthearted, with some scorching sex scenes too, if you are a fan of Lovell’s work and after a summer read, this is a great option.

Erotic Romance, Erotica, Reviews, Romance

REVIEW: Bad Teacher – Clarissa Wild

image

My name is Thomas and I’m always hard.
No really, that’s my last name. Thomas Hard, the pleasure is all mine … literally.
I can’t help it that my name suits me well.
You know what else suits me well? That girl sitting across the bar, with her lips right where I tell them to be. I want her, and when I want something, it’s gonna be mine.
One night. No names. No phone numbers. Just me, her, and pure pleasure.
Except, that one girl turns out to be the biggest mistake of my life.
Why?
Because I broke my cardinal rule …
Never bang a student.

Review

Title: Bad Teacher
Author: Clarissa Wild
Series: standalone
Genre: erotic forbidden romance
Rating: ****

Well this was a filthy little number. Those sex scenes were some of the hottest I have ever read, and were totally up my street. It’s rare to find humiliation included in erotic romances which aren’t of the dark variety. Yum.

I loved this. One of the best reads of 2016, the characters and relationships were wonderful, strong, confused and passionate. The arrogance of Thomas was delicious, as was the innocence of Hailey. Together they made quite a pair, and it was an easy, quick read. The ending was not a typical romance one, which made this even better. My only complaint? I wanted more. Some of the drama could have been extended to be more emotionally affecting, and have more of a place within the main narrative.

Highly recommended.

Reviews, Romance

REVIEW: The Billionaire’s Favourite Mistake – Jessica Clare

the billionaire's favourite mistakeTitle: The Billionaire’s Favourite Mistake
Author: Jessica Clare
Series: Billionaires and Bridesmaids #4 (can be read as a standalone)
Genre: romance
Rating: ***

This was an enjoyable, light read, dealing with a surprise pregnancy narrative. The conversations between Asher and Greer were pretty amusing, but overall for me it was just lacking in something. Emotional interest, maybe. For a pregnancy narrative it felt like there was very little focus on the actual pregnancy, no emotion in dealing with it. There also didn’t seem to be a massive amount of chemistry between the two leads.

I found Greer just too naive, the ‘practicing’ was funny but a tad unrealistic (if not stupid), and there was too much angst through misunderstandings. The plot for this one just wasn’t for me, really. I haven’t read the other books in the series, and although I found I could understand and there was no need to have done so, perhaps this would have made me more emotionally invested.

Overall, I found this to be an average lighthearted romantic comedy.

Reviews, Romance

REVIEW: We Shouldn’t and Yet… – Stephanie Witter

25491715Title: We Shouldn’t And Yet…
Author: Stephanie Witter
Series: standalone
Genre: forbidden romance
Rating: **** 

I found this a highly emotional and captivating read, with perfect character development and pacing. I always enjoy seeing two broken people finding comfort and love with one another, and this was no exception to that. Even the forbidden/taboo aspect of their relationship was sensitively written, without leaving that horrible sick feeling in the pit of your stomach.

The angst and relationship complications felt completely natural within the plot, nothing forced at all, and flowed brilliantly. The sex scenes were insanely steamy with massive chemistry between Aideen and Jensen, and even the supporting characters were fully developed and complicated.

Highly recommended.

Reviews, Romance

REVIEW: Play Maker – Katie McCoy

30168894Title: Play Maker
Author: Katie McCoy
Series: standalone
Genre: romance
Rating: ****

This was a really fun, very steamy sports romance, written extremely well with perfect characterisation of the two leads. James and Nicole were highly developed and complex individuals, and although there was instant chemistry, this was not a story of insta-love but rather an unfolding fling-to-thing romance. James was just delicious, even if the overuse of typical British words such as “wanker” and “bloody” is quite funny to a British reader. Those blue eyes and that smile though…I could really build up a fantastic picture (and I very much liked it).

There was a little angst in this but luckily not too much, and nothing that wasn’t obviously going to be set in motion from the very beginning. Regardless, this was a funny and easy, well-paced read with fabulous sex scenes and one candy floss happy ending.