Review: Matter of Time by Alannah Lynne

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** I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review **

Title: MATTER OF TIME 
Author: Alannah Lynne
Series Info: Heat Wave #5
Release Date: 4/21/2015
About MATTER OF TIME:

Matter of Time - Alannah Lynne

Some might think the phrase, “you complete me” is a just cheesy line from the movies, but Lizbeth Sanders knows better…

In MATTER OF TIME, Lizbeth has spent the past fifteen years desperately searching for someone to fill the void left by Logan Steele’s disappearance from her life. However, rather than finding love and happiness, all she’s found is disappointment, heartache, and an ever-present longing for the man she can never have.
Fifteen years ago, Logan Steele left the woman he loved to marry his high school sweetheart and be a father to the child he didn’t know he had. He’s always tried to do the honorable thing, to be a good husband and a great father, but despite his sacrifices and best efforts, the shaky foundation of his marriage crumbles and falls apart.
When his identical twin surprises him with a reintroduction to Lizbeth, Logan feels like he’s been given a second chance—at life and love. But a lot can change in fifteen years, and after hurting her so badly the first time, building trust isn’t just hard, it’s nearly impossible—especially when duty and obligation pulls him away again.

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Where to buy MATTER OF TIME:
Amazon | B&N | iTunes/iBooks | Kobo | Google Play

Click here to enter our Heat Wave Series contest!

My Rating:

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My Thoughts:

Matter of Time was an enjoyable and quick read. The chemistry between Logan and Lizbeth jumped off the page. Their mutual devotion and admiration for one another was obvious and well-developed. My only criticism is that I would have liked to have seen more of them. We were told from the beginning how perfect they were together, but for a brief flashback (which was lovely) we weren’t shown much about why they worked together or how they worked as a couple.

Logan made what he considered the responsible move and left Lizbeth (the woman he wanted to marry) in order to form a family with this ex and their infant daughter. I personally question the sensibility of raising a child in a home that is not founded on love, but hey, at least he tried. Lizbeth never blamed Logan for his decision, so I guess neither shall I.

After nearly fifteen years of marriage Logan freed himself to find his happiness and immediately set his sights on rekindling his relationship with Lizbeth. He really didn’t have to work too hard at it. 😉 While Logan’s been married, enjoying a successful career, and raising his three children (yes, they had more), Lizbeth has been flitting from relationship to relationship trying to find that spark she had with Logan, that sense of belonging. Lizbeth is open to letting Logan in her life (and bed) without nearly enough groveling in my opinion (then again, Lizbeth seems a lot nicer than me). Not that Logan and Lizbeth didn’t experience plenty of angst, but a little more conflict in working through their issues would have gone a long way to making this story more emotionally rewarding for me.

Lizbeth and Logan’s spark was certainly still there and they quickly started setting the sheets afire. After years with a ‘vanilla’ unsatisfying sex life with a harpy of an ex-wife –BOY! What a piece of work she ends up being!– Logan was ready to explore the more domineering side of his bedroom persona that’s he’s only ever let out with Lizbeth, and Lizbeth was ALL IN!

Matter of Time is a well-written tale that could have been made better by a little more ‘meat’ to the telling, but it was still ultimately satisfying.


Matter-of-Time-teaser-1Excerpt from MATTER OF TIME:

She couldn’t logically think through something that was ninety-nine percent emotional, but what if she took the emotion out of it? What if she reduced them to a baser, primal level, like animals circling each other in the wild?

A dog in heat didn’t study the neighbor’s Doberman and wonder if he would be around the next day. The bitch rolled over, allowed him to take what he wanted, and enjoyed the hell out of it. Comparing her and Logan to dogs seemed ridiculous, but that was the only way she knew to cope with the overwhelming magnitude of the situation.

Swallowing the lump in her throat, she slowly, tentatively reached out to him. With a barely-there touch, she pressed her index finger to the edge of his forehead, drew it across the unfamiliar scar at his temple, then down to the one intersecting his upper lip. He closed his eyes and moaned as a shudder shook his torso and his head fell back on his neck.

Seeing him respond to her touch as strongly as ever gave her the courage to continue her exploration. Using a whisper-soft touch designed to drive him crazy, she traced the outline of his upper lip, then pulled a long, slow sweep along the bottom one.

Her breath caught in her throat and she gasped in surprise as his lips parted and his teeth latched onto her finger, capturing her in the velvety heat of his mouth. His tongue wrapped around her and he sucked once… twice… a third time. The force of the suction shot through her arm, into her chest, and dropped into her sex with the heat and intensity of an atomic bomb.

Good, so freaking good, just as always with him. Simple caresses and touches were more powerful and intimate than full-on sex with anyone else, and she closed her eyes and allowed the carnal energy swirling between them to carry her away.

As the room spun and she grew lightheaded, like being caught in a massive vortex, a terrifying thought jumped into her brain. What if the past fifteen years hadn’t been a nightmare, but this was nothing more than a dream?

If so, it was the best, most realistic dream she’d ever experienced, and she prayed she never woke up.

She cracked her eyes open and watched his nostrils flare as the heat continued to build between them. She needed to be closer. To taste him. To feel him pressed against her. Scooting to the edge of her seat, she pressed her knees between his legs and smiled as his eyes flashed hotter and his chest rose and fell rapidly. His mouth was masterful, and while the suction on her finger did crazy things to her entire body, it wasn’t enough.

When she tugged on her hand, drawing him closer while also indicating she wanted him to let her go, he released her finger with a loud pop. The sound was like a starting gun, and in the next instant, his lips crashed down on hers, hot, hard, and demanding. Logan had always been sexually dominant, but this… this was unlike anything she remembered.

One hand slid through the hair at her temple, then wrapped around the back of her head and held her in place while he angled his head and deepened the kiss. His tongue thrust in and out of her mouth, harsh and nearly punishing, and when he nipped on her bottom lip, both of them groaned with the pleasurable familiarity.

The past fifteen years melted away, and she was a twenty-year-old girl again, standing in his bedroom, getting ready to crawl into his bed for the first time. They’d kept their relationship platonic for a year, respecting the boundary constraining them because of his off-and-on relationship with Bobbi Jo. But the night he came back to school and told Lizbeth he and Bobbi Jo had broken things off for good, it took less than thirty minutes to ditch their friends at the restaurant and make their way back to his condo.

His hands tangled in her hair and held her head in place as he ravished her mouth. She clawed at his shirt, trying to get to the hard muscle and soft skin beneath. She couldn’t get close enough, fast enough, and desperation had her whimpering into his mouth.

When he drew back to grab a breath, she latched onto him to keep him close. “More. I need more.”


2013PromophotoAbout Alannah Lynne:

Alannah believes there’s nothing more magical than finding the other half of your soul, experiencing fiery passion, and knowing you’ve found happily-ever-after.

She loves going to work each day (in sweats and a T-shirt) and writing about hot heroes and feisty heroines who torment each other in the most delicious ways before finding their happy ending.

She lives in the coastal region of North Carolina with her husband, who also happens to be her best friend and biggest fan. They have two sons, a dog, and two cats.

Connect with Alannah Online:

Website | BlogFacebook | Twitter | Goodreads

 Promotional material provided by:

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Dare to Hold by Carly Phillips Preorder Contest

  


A message from Carly Phillips:


Hi!

 

You may have saw a few posts from me on social media last week about a huge contest I’m holding – with lots of goodies!

Well I’m happy to announce that with your help, I’ve met my first preorder milestone for Dare to Hold.  

BE SURE TO READ TO END FOR HOW TO ENTER – ESPECIALLY IF YOU’VE ALREADY PREORDERED!
 
My second Milestone is 6k copies! 
Once I hit that number I’ll be giving away a $50 gift card to Amazon and I’ll send 5 lucky winners Advanced Reading Copies of Dare to Hold.
But that’s not all – I’ve set “milestones” to happen along the way with some terrific prizes that include:

  • $100 Amazon Gift Card
  • $250 Amazon Gift Card
  • Signed copies of ALL the Dare books
  • Tea/Drink/Lunch with me for one lucky winner at RWA in New York or NINC in St. Pete’s Florida (don’t worry if you can’t attend either event, you’ll have your choice of a gift card to an online retailer that allows e-gift cards for $200)

And if we surpass my preorder goal, I have a super exciting grand prize that I’ll announce later.

Once I reach each goal, I’ll announce the new goal and pull a winner from the list and share with everyone!

Preorder links:

Fill out this Google Doc to enter to win! Pre-Order must be purchased before 4/14/15 to be eligible.

 (Clicking on Giveaway Kitty will take you to entry form too!)

  


Release Day Blitz: Scandalously Yours by Cara Elliot

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Two passionate intellectuals find more than an ideological match when seeking political reform. Unexpected love and desire mark Olivia and John’s heated partnership in this delightful and engaging novel by Cara Elliott.

Title: SCANDALOUSLY YOURS
Author: Cara Elliott
Availability: March 31, 2015 (Forever Mass Market); e-book also available
Series Info: Hellions of High Street (#1)

Proper young ladies of the ton-especially ones who have very small dowries-are not encouraged to have an interest in intellectual pursuits. Indeed, the only things they are encouraged to pursue are eligible bachelors. So, the headstrong Sloane sisters must keep their passions a secret. Ah, but secret passions are wont to lead a lady into trouble . . .

Scandalously Yours by Cara ElliottThe eldest of the three Sloane sisters, Olivia is unafraid to question the boundaries of Society-even if it does frequently land her in trouble. Disdaining the glittery world of balls and courtship, Olivia prefers to spend her time writing fiery political essays under a pseudonym for London’s leading newspaper. But when her columns attract the attention of the oh-so-proper Earl of Wrexham, Olivia suddenly finds herself dancing on the razor’s edge of scandal. With the help of her sisters, she tries to stay one step ahead of trouble . . .

However, after a series of madcap misadventures, Wrexham, a former military hero who is fighting for social reform in Parliament, discovers Olivia’s secret. To her surprise, he proposes a temporary alliance to help win passage of his bill. Passion flares between them, but when a political enemy kidnaps the earl’s young son, they must make some dangerous decisions . . . and trust that love will conquer all.

Where to Buy Scandalously Yours:

Amazon  |  B&N  |  iBooks  |  GooglePlay  |  BAM  |  Kobo

GIVEAWAY INFO:Giveaway Kitty!

Enter the Giveaway hosted on Rafflecopter!

  • Ten (10) winners will receive a copy of Scandalously Yours by Cara Elliott

About author Cara Elliott:

Cara ElliottCara Elliott started writing Western novels at the age of five. However, she traded in her cowboy boots for Regency high-top Hessians after reading Pride and Prejudice in junior high school and hasn’t looked back. She graduated from Yale University, and she now lives and works in New York City.

Connect with Cara’s Social Media:

Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Goodreads

Read an excerpt from Scandalously Yours:

“How dare you spy on me, sir!” demanded Olivia, once she had mastered her emotions enough to speak.

He fixed her with a commanding stare, the one that had set many a seasoned soldiers to quaking in their boots. “I would not have had to resort to such tactics if you had shown me the courtesy of answering my letters.”

Olivia refused to be intimidated. Lifting her chin, she scowled back at him. “I did answer them.”

“With a single word—no.”

“And what,” she asked with excruciating politeness, “did you not understand about such a simple syllable?”

John couldn’t help but admire her grit. It took courage and resourcefulness to play in a man’s world. And she played well, he conceded.

Expelling a harried sigh, he felt his anger dissipate just as quickly as it had come. She had no choice but to guard her secret very carefully. “Look, at least hear me out, Miss Sloane. Tracking down The Beacon has led me on a merry dance throughout Town.”

Olivia paled at the mention of the nom de plume. Turning abruptly, she plunged off the path and darted around a tangle of holly.

“Wait!” John ducked under the prickly branches, losing his hat in the process.

“Go away!” Her voice was muffled by the overhanging leaves.

“Not until we talk!”

“I’ve nothing to say to you.”

The Devil take it. All but a last little flutter of her skirts disappeared behind a shaggy yew hedge. Swearing under his breath, John cut through a patch of lavender. He hadn’t come this far to be rebuffed. She would damn well listen. Or else…

Several long strides brought him within arm’s reach of her. “Confound it, Miss Sloane, stop and listen,” he called, lunging for her sleeve.

As his fingers seized the fabric, his boot snagged on a twist of morning glory. Pitched off-balance, he stumbled and fell, taking her with him. Tangled together, they hit the ground hard, their momentum rolling them into a patch of pachysandra.

“Ooof!” Olivia’s flailing kick caught him square in the shin.

Flat on his back, John got a momentary glimpse of Olivia’s irrepressible curls dancing in the breeze before another half turn landed him on his stomach. Burning with embarrassment, he tried to right himself, only to find that she was sprawled across his…posterior.

Bloody hell, he had never felt like a bigger arse in all his life.

They both started wriggling at the same time. He managed to twist face-up just as she slipped on the glossy leaves and fell back down atop him.

“Miss Sloane,” he gasped.

“Lord Wrexham,” wheezed Olivia, an odd little burr roughening her already throaty voice.

For an instant, he feared she was going to burst into tears.

Instead, she began to laugh.

And laugh.

Scottie was right. It was a delightful sound, its top notes shaded with a rich, sensual echo that seemed to stroke over his skin like a moon-dappled midnight breeze.

A twitch tugged at his lips. His dignity—as well as his coat—was in tatters, his pride was bruised, and though he should not find it at all funny, John felt a rumble vibrate deep in his throat.

Olivia tried to get up again, but her limbs were too weak with mirth. “Good Lord, what a ridiculous picture we must make!” she wheezed in between burbles of laughter.

“Here, let me help you.” Levering to his feet, John lifted her up and as she seemed a bit shaky, he kept his hands on her waist.

“Well, it’s not every day I take a tumble in the hay with an earl,” she quipped.

“Please don’t think that I make a habit of ruining a young lady’s reputation,” he answered.

Her cheeks, already pink from the breeze, turned a lusher shade of red as she looked up and wet her lips.

John felt his body clench. His legendary sang froid began to bubble…His steely self-control went up in smoke…

Olivia flinched as his mouth possessed hers. She was like summer rain against his tongue. So soft, so sweet.

Her hands came up around his neck.

Hell, it would serve him right if she throttled him on the spot.

But then, all of a sudden, she was kissing him back.

In a daze, John twisted around and braced her back against the ivy-covered wall, the glossy leaves crackling under the crush of silk. He was dimly aware of a roaring like cannonfire in his ears, and as his hands slid down to cup her breasts he realized it was the pounding of his own heart.

Knocking all reason to flinders.

A gust of air ruffled his hair, stirring wild, wicked thoughts of her waltzing naked through the trees. In response, his own privy parts began dancing to their own drummer. Thump. Thump. Thump. His pulse was pounding a military tattoo, commanding all soldiers to stand erect.

And Dear God, his Major Organ was responding with unabashed enthusiasm.

Olivia didn’t seem disgusted by his display of primitive lust. With a tiny moan, she tightened her hold and hitched her hips into him.

Lud, it felt good. No, better than good.

Exquisite.

Don’t forget to keep an eye out for the next two books in the Hellions of High Street series: SINFULLY YOURS (April 28) and PASSIONATELY YOURS (May 26), as Olivia Sloane’s younger sisters pursue their intellectual passions – and find love along the way!

New Release: The Scandalous Secret of Abigail MacGregor by Paula Quinn

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**I received an e-ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review**

Title: THE SCANDALOUS SECRET OF ABIGAIL MACGREGOR Author: Paula Quinn Series Info: The MacGregors: Highland Heirs #3 Availability: March 31 (Forever Romance, Mass Market and e-Book) Where to Buy THE SCANDALOUS SECRET OF ABIGAIL MACGREGOR: Amazon  |  BAM  |   B&N  |  IndieBound  |  GooglePlay  |  iTunes |  Kobo About THE SCANDALOUS SECRET OF ABIGAIL MACGREGOR:

The Scandalous Secret of Abigail MacGregor by Paula QuinnA LADY’S MISSION . . .
Known for her beauty and boldness, Abigail MacGregor must preserve her clan’s dangerous secret: that her mother is the true heir to the English Crown. If the wrong people find out, it will mean war for her beloved Scotland. To keep peace, she embarks for London, unprepared for the treachery that awaits-especially from her wickedly handsome escort. He is the enemy, but his slow, sensuous kisses entice her beyond reason . . .
A WARRIOR’S TEMPTATION
General Daniel Marlow, loyal knight and the kingdom’s most desirable hero, would rather be on the battlefield than transporting a spoiled Highland lass. But Abby MacGregor is unlike any woman he’s ever met, in a ballroom or in his bedroom. Captivated by her daring spirit and seduced by her lovely innocence, Daniel must choose between betraying his queen or giving up the woman who would steal his country-and his traitorous heart.
My Rating:
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4.5/5 bottles of polish for another stellar creation by the remarkable Paula Quinn, pairing fast-paced adventure with courtly schemes to create a heartwarming love story.
My Thoughts:
Historical intrigue, action, and undeniable passion – what’s not to love? (Other than the perfectly crafted villainess Charlotte, Duchess of Blackburn – what a b***h!)
Abigail MacGregor and Daniel Marlow are the Jacobite era equivalent of Romeo and Juliet.  Daniel is sworn to serve and protect Queen Anne of Great Britain, while Abigail is the daughter of Anne’s secret older sister Davina– the rightful Queen.  Abigail’s royal lineage, coupled with her outlaw Highland roots, should make her the last woman confirmed bachelor and loyal general Daniel Marlow would give his heart to.  Daniel has spent his entire life close to Queen Anne and has build his career on protecting her throne from Jacobite rebels, such as the MacGregors.
The wonderful thing about Abigail and Daniel’s tale is, despite their differences, they are able to see past labels and prejudices and learn to love –and more importantly like– each other as individuals. Unable to deny their attraction and affection, they each retain a realistic outlook as to the futility of their connection, all the while falling further in as while their future grows farther out of reach. Luckily, honesty, mutual respect and communication save the day – with a little help from Abigail’s family.
On its own, the love of Abigail and Daniel would be a compelling read, however the historical elements are tightly woven into the story and enhance it rather than act as mere background. Author Paula Quinn continues to skillfully mine the era of Jacobite conflict to create historically accurate and intriguing plots, peppered with exciting action sequences. This is the third generation of MacGregors that Ms. Quinn has treated readers to (check out awesome MacGregor family tree and bonus details). The reappearance in The Scandalous Secret of Abigail MacGregor of characters from earlier novels is welcome, as they retain their unique personalities and add real value to the story instead of appearing one-dimensional.  I have to point out, Abby’s father Rob MacGregor (hero of Ravished by a Highlander) still cuts a fine figure. It’s easy to imagine choosing a life with him over the precarious position as Queen– smart move, Davina.
The Scandalous Secret of Abigail MacGregor is a lovely tale of passion and compassion overcoming seemingly insurmountable differences, with the added bonus of a chivalrous knight (and some steamy nights).
Giveaway Info:
Giveaway Kitty!
Enter the Giveaway hosted on Raffecopter for a chance to win:
  • (5) Lucky winners will receive the set of THE MACGREGORS: HIGHLAND HEIRS series

Click on Giveaway Kitty or the link above to enter!

About author Paula Quinn:
Paula QuinnNew York Times bestselling author Paula Quinn lives in New York with her three beautiful children, three over-protective chihuahuas, and a loud umbrella cockatoo. She loves to read romance and science fiction and has been writing since she was eleven.  She loves all things medieval, but it is her love for Scotland that pulls at her heartstrings.
Connect with Paula’s Social Media:
Goodreads  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Website  |  Twitter: @Paula_Quinn
Read an excerpt from THE SCANDALOUS SECRET OF ABIGAIL MACGREGOR:

“Aye, ye did say that,” she murmured. “Well, since we’re both awake, we might as well spend the night together again.” The innocence in her voice struck him in the guts. She wanted nothing more from him than someone to be with outside in the night. He, on the other hand, was not innocent at all. Her choice of words sent a little spark of heat to his groin. The way she turned on the pads of her feet and ended up pressed against his side and tucked neatly under his shoulder tilted him on his axis a little. “I’m cold,” she whispered, her teeth chattering. He put up no fight when she lifted his arm around her shoulder, then covered them both with her plaid. The desire to protect her overwhelmed him and sent tremors through his muscles. He knew little of her. Was she an innocent daughter of a Jacobite chief, or part of some secret scheme Anne was devising. Hell. Anne didn’t devise schemes. “I wasn’t certain if you were ever going to speak to me again,” he said, when what he should have said was, You should go sleep somewhere, lady, and not on me. “I was verra’ angry with ye. But I’ve forgiven ye.” He heard the smile in her voice and made a mental note of how well it pleased him that she was no longer angry. He would decide what to do about his unwanted concerns for her tomorrow. Right now, he only wanted to sit with her just like this, with her beneath his arm and pressed snuggly into his side. Warmth swept over him like fine wine until he felt drunk on it. How was it that she fit so neatly into him, now and earlier when she slept in his lap, like she belonged there, close to him? Close to his heart. Hell, it scared him, and after fighting for over a decade, not much scared him anymore. “D’ye have a wife, General Marlow?” Came her sweet voice against his chest. “No, lady.” “Are ye betrothed?” “I am not.” “Is there a lass somewhere who has yer heart?” “No.” “Well,” she laughed softly, “are all the ladies in England fools?” “They’re the opposite,” he told her. “They’re wise to set their interests in another direction.” She shook her head then tilted her face up to his. In the filtered light of the moon, he could make her out enough to fall victim to the alluring curves of her mouth, her soft, sweet breath against his chin. “Nae, they are fools not to try to win yer affections.” He knew every reason there was to stop what he was thinking, what he was feeling, and what he was about to do. But reason was a puny opponent compared to desire. Slipping one hand behind her nape and the other to her throat, he tilted her chin another half-inch then covered her mouth with his. The instant after he did it, he regretted it, but then she coiled her arms around his neck and drew him closer, and he couldn’t stop. He never wanted to. She didn’t resist him, in fact, she melted in his arms. She groaned softly when he drew his tongue across the seam of her mouth. She bit his lip and ignited his blood to liquid fire. He swept his tongue in and out of her, holding her close to him while they kissed, wanting nothing more from her than what she gave him now. Making love to her could be dangerous if Charlotte found out. He’d have to make sure she didn’t find out, at least until he had proof of other crimes and could arrest her. If she hurt Abigail before that he’d hang her himself. He wondered, as he held her in his arms and kissed her long into the night, how he could be so content with one he was supposed to hate.

New Release: Random & Rare by Cat Porter (Lock & Key #2)

** I received an e_ARC in exchange for an honest review **

TitleRandom & Rare
Author: Cat Porter
Series Info: Lock & Key Series, #2; Lock & Key (Lock & Key Series #1)
You can read my review of Lock & Key here (4/5 bottles of polish).
Release Info: eBook available NOW
Where to Buy:
Kindle  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Smashwords
Cover Blurb:

I am that gash in her soul.
Once I loved Grace, really loved her.
And she loved me, and it was so fucking beautiful.
Once.
That pendulum swings to and fro.
We’re here,
and then we’re—
No.
How can that rare beautiful be rendered irrelevant, intangible when I still feel so damn much?
Does all that energy, that glory, that significance simply dissolve?
Turn to smoke?
To nothing?
It can’t. It just can’t.
Are the moments that shape us absolutely random?
Is time not fluid?
I made promises to them, to her.
Especially to her.
Promises I still burn to keep.

Giveaway Info:

  • Enter the Giveaway hosted on Rafflecopter for a chance to win the necklace featured on the cover of Lock & Key:

necklace Cat Porter giveaway
My Rating:

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My Thoughts:

The cover blurb for Random & Rare doesn’t really give away much about the plot of this touching and slightly melancholy novel.  Random & Rare serves as both a prequel and sequel to Cat Porter’s early novel Lock & Key, which depicted the love story of the widow Grace Quillen and the emotionally reserved Miller. We learned Grace’s side of her life with her first love, Dig, and the consequences of his untimely –and violent– death.  Random & Rare begins with story of Dig and Grace from his point of view, as well as detailing his tragic past and heartbreaking end.

Part 2 tells the story of Grace and Miller’s present-day struggle to start a family. When tragedy strikes, Grace blames herself and nearly drowns in guilt over the child she has been unable to share with either of the men she has loved. An unexpected encounter with a figure from Dig’s past gives Grace a better understanding of her late husband and hope for the future for her and Miller. (Sorry if that’s too vague, but spoilers must be avoided! 😉 )

I enjoyed learning more about Dig, especially his past, but the telling of his tale in this new novel prevents me from recommending Random & Rare as a standalone read. Part 1 takes more than half the book (65% according to my Kindle) and introduces many characters that were featured in Lock & Key. I think I would have preferred reading Part 1 before Lock & Key, then reading Part 2 as an emotionally satisfying epilogue. Events from Lock & Key were referenced in Part 2 that I had forgotten the details of and certainly would make no sense to a reader new to the series.  Also, the best part of Lock & Key for me was Miller and his role in this novel is relegated to almost a secondary character (although I loved seeing him interact with Dig in Part 1 – and he remains undeniably sexy!). I know Grace and Dig shared a unique and powerful love, but I would have liked to read more about how Miller and Grace’s love was different and special in its own right.

The story of Dig, Grace, Miller and the One-Eyed Jacks Motorcycle Club, as told in both Lock & Key and Random & Rare, is unique and touching, with moments of extreme passion and characters you can’t help but care about. I look forward to more tales of the One-Eyed Jacks!

About Author Cat Porter:

Cat Porter was born and raised in New York City, but also spent a few years in Europe and Texas along the way. As an introverted, only child, she had very big, but very secret dreams for herself. She graduated from Vassar College, was a struggling actress, an art gallery girl, special events planner, freelance writer, restaurant hostess and had all sorts of other crazy jobs all hours of the day and night to help make her dreams come true. She has two children’s books traditionally published under her maiden name. She now lives in Athens, Greece with her husband and three children, and freaks out regularly and still daydreams way too much. She is addicted to the History Channel, her iPad, her husband’s homemade red wine, really dark chocolate, and her Nespresso coffee machine. Writing keeps her somewhat sane, extremely happy, and a productive member of society.

Connect with Cat’s Social Media:

Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter: @catporter103  |  Goodreads

Excerpt from RANDOM & RARE by Cat Porter ©2015:

Warning: contains graphic language and reference to NSFW scenarios

“Hey you.” Lissa’s voice piped up behind me stopping me in my tracks.

Ah, fuck.

“Hey.”

“Haven’t seen you around in a while.”

“Busy. Got married. Life.”

Glasses thunked on the bar top, and stools shuffled behind me.

Lissa’s thin eyebrows shot up for a second. “Oh. Right.”

“Yep.”

She punched out a hip and smirked. “And how’s that going?”

“Who wants to know?” Grace suddenly stood next to me, her eyes piercing Lissa.

“Uh…”

Grace inclined her head. “Who are you?” she slowly uttered the words.

Oh, she wasn’t asking for Lissa’s name. She was asking a deeper metaphysical question.

“I’m Li—”

“And I don’t care,” Grace practically snarled. “This is my old man. He’s not yours. Not yours to touch, kiss, lick, suck, strip for, dance for, tease, nor does he light your fucking cigarettes or buy you a drink. Ever.”

Lissa gulped, her eyes wide, her body motionless.

Grace turned to her BFFs standing on my other side. “Did I miss anything?”

“No, honey,” Dee replied. “You got it.”

Grace turned back to Lissa. “Did that register, or should I go over that one more time for you to make sure?”

Speechless.

I was transfixed.

“No, I-I got it,” Lissa mumbled.

“Let me know if you need a review of these basics because you cross those lines again, any of them, in any fucking way, large or small—ever—there will be serious repercussions for you.” Grace leaned into Lissa. Her stance wide, my old lady looked larger than life. My cock stiffened against my jeans.

“Did you hear that, bitch?” Alicia said, her face twisting in a nasty sneer.

“Got it. Yeah, sorry.” Lissa glanced at me.

Mistake.

Grace leaned in closer, her hand gripping Lissa’s chin. “Honey, I get that bikers do it for you. But this particular biker is mine. All fucking mine, head to toe, inside and out. So fuck off. Got that?”

Grace released Lissa’s chin, and Lissa stiffly and slowly nodded her head, like a toy robot on its last charge of battery power.

“Yeah, that’s right.” Dee let out a throaty dark laugh.

“I know you’ve been trying your damnedest for the longest time. I’ve been watching. But he is not going to be tapping that ass of yours. Not ever. Get the fuck out of my bar, and do not come back.” Grace was still, focused like a stealthy cobra calmly waiting in between strikes.

“Okay,” Lissa mumbled as she teetered away.

“Tommy!” Grace shouted to one of her bouncers at the door.

Tommy’s bodybuilding bulk towered before Lissa. His eyes flicked over her. “What’s up, Mrs. Q?”

“This girl needs to be escorted out of our bar, and she’s not allowed back in. Got that?”

“Got it.” He glared at Lissa. “Let’s go.”

Lissa plodded after Tommy toward the front door.

“Lissa?” Two girls screeched and bustled at the other end of the bar. “Lissa? What’s going on? Where are you going? Wait up!”

Grace scowled at me, her hands digging into her waist. “Sprite!” she snapped.

I nodded as I rounded the bar top. She grabbed my arm as I brushed past her.

Her big greenish eyes flashed at me. “My office when you’re done, and be prepared to get on your knees.”

My breath stalled.

I fixed that soda gun within four minutes, strode into the office, and made sure the door behind me was locked.


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Q&A with Jessica Lemmon, author of new release, Bringing Home the Bad Boy

Bringing-Home-the-Bad-Boy-Blog-Tour
I’m really excited to share my Q&A with one of my favorite authors. Jessica Lemmon, in celebration of her  new book out this week: BRINGING HOME THE BAD BOY. Readers of Jessica’s earlier books will recognize protagonist Evan Downey and his adorable son Lyon (YES! Evan gets his HEA–and some lovin’!!!)
If you aren’t familiar with Jessica’s other books WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU?! Just kidding (sorta). If you like authentic dialogue, original characters, hot guys, strong women, and fantastic writing, you’ll love Jessica’s work! I bet you’ll find at least one new book boyfriend (I know I did ;)). Check out the Giveaway link at end of this post for a chance to win ALL of Jessica’s books, including #1-3 of Love in the Balance series (Tempting the Billionaire, Hard to Handle, The Millionaire Affair).
Pick up BRINGING HOME THE BAD BOY today, you won’t be sorry!
Title: BRINGING HOME THE BAD BOY
Author: Jessica Lemmon
Publisher: Forever (Grand Central Publishing)
Availability: NOW! Ebook and mass market
Series: Second Chance, #1
Where you can buy BRINGING HOME THE BAD BOY:
Amazon |  BAM |  B&N  |  IndieBound  |  GooglePlay  |  iTunes  |  Kobo
About BRINGING HOME THE BAD BOY:
Bringing Home the Bad Boy by Jessica LemmonCreativity is his drug, painting is his escape, but she’ll be the addiction that brings him to his knees. 
Evan Downey buried a part of his soul when put the love of his life in the ground. He knows he needs to get his shit together for the sake of their son, but escaping into his art is the only way he can begin to cope with Rae’s death. When the chance to move back to Evergreen Cove, one of the few places that has ever felt right to him, he knows it’s a chance he has to take.
For his sake, and his son’s. Charlotte Harris would give anything to have her best friend back. But if she can’t have Rae, then she vows she’ll at least be there to support the family Rae left behind. So when she learns that Evan is looking to move home, she does everything she can to help him and Lyon re-build their lives at the Cove. But when sparks start to fly between Charlotte and Evan it’s the first glimpse of something bright and beautiful either of them has seen in far too long. And they start to wonder if fate has offered them a second chance at happiness– if only they’re brave enough to take the risk and let love back into their lives.
Q&A with author Jessica Lemmon:

Is there a message you’d like your readers to take away from BRINGING HOME THE BAD BOY?

That there is life for those of us left behind after someone we love passes away. It will be different than the life we had while they were here, but it will get good again.

What books do you curl up with when you need a comfort read?

Lori Foster, Jill Shalvis, Kristin Ashley, and Roxanne St. Claire to name a few. I also love to try new authors. Some of the recent ones I have discovered are Shannon Richard, Lauren Layne, and Rachael Lacey. They are fantastic!

What is your guilty pleasure?

Anything fried. Specifically, potato chips and french fries.

If you could write yourself into any book, what would it be?

I wanted to be Bella from Twilight so bad I couldn’t see straight! I think there is always a part of us, as women, that feels very plain and unnoticed. When the hottest guy around takes notice, likes you back… well, that’s every high school dream come true, isn’t it?

Which of your books was the most fun to write?

Tempting the Billionaire. I knew there was something special about Shane August, and that book was just a joy to write.

Which the most challenging?

Without a doubt, Rescuing the Bad Boy. Donovan and Sofie’s book was originally written back in 2010. Then rewritten in 2011. And, just because I was a masochist, before I handed it into my agent, I rewrote it one more time in 2012. Then, guess what? Once my editor and I talked about the direction of the Second Chance series, I decided to write it ONE. MORE. TIME. Yep, I wrote it again. And while I wondered if this rewrite just might kill me, I have to admit that the story is exactly as it should be.

About author Jessica Lemmon:
jessicalemmon_author photoJessica Lemmon has always been a dreamer. At some point, she decided head-in-the-clouds thinking was childish, went out, and got herself a job . . . and then she got another one because that one was lousy. And when that one stopped being fulfilling, she went out and got another . . . and another. Soon it became apparent she’d only be truly happy doing what she loved. And since “eating potato chips” isn’t a viable career, she opted to become a writer. With fire in her heart, she dusted off a book she’d started years prior, finished it, and submitted it. It may have been the worst book ever, but it didn’t stop her from writing another one. Now she has several books finished, several more started, and even more marinating in her brain (which currently resides in the clouds, thankyouverymuch), and she couldn’t be happier. She firmly believes God gifts us with talents for a purpose, and with His help, you can create the life you want. (While eating potato chips.)
Inspiration for Evan Downey, actor Ian Somerhalder Photo found on author's Pinterest board

Inspiration for Evan Downey, actor Ian Somerhalder
Photo found on author’s Pinterest board

Connect with Jessica’s Social Media:
Twitter: @lemmony  |  Website  |  Goodreads  |  Facebook

You also HAVE to check out Jessica’s Pinterest boards. She includes tons of amazing pictures that inspire and/or relate to her stories. Her board for BRINGING HOME THE BAD BOY (found here) has lots of steamy pics of Ian Somerhalder, her inspiration for Evan Downey.

Excerpt from BRINGING HOME THE BAD BOY:

“Know why I moved here?” he asked, keeping his voice low.

She wrenched her eyes from his and focused on a spot over his shoulder.

“Because you didn’t want to live in Columbus anymore.” That’s what he’d told her. That he wanted a change. That he and Lyon had outgrown the house. And, she imagined it’d be hard to live in the house where Rae had passed.

“But why here?”

“Um…”

His fingers grazed her jaw and turned her head, his palm moving to her neck where he cupped her nape and forced her eyes to his.

Reluctantly, she met them.

“Rae’s more alive when you’re around, Ace.”

Her heart, oh her heart. Kicking against her chest in a confusing, hectic rhythm.

“You bring her to life for Lyon—more than anyone else. I need him to remember her because he can’t remember her alive.” His hold stayed, his palm warming her neck, his gaze unwavering.

She tried to separate the two feelings she was having—one that she was now talking about Rae with Evan and two, that he was touching her while talking about Rae.

Before she could, his lips closed over hers.

Her thoughts short-circuited.

This wasn’t anything like a soft peck hello. This was his lips moving over hers, slanting over hers, warm and firm and then his mouth opened and—

Oh my gosh!

His wet, warm tongue slid along the seam of her lips and she stopped being passive and started kissing him back. When she would have touched her tongue to his, he relocated it, running along her bottom lip instead and tugging with his teeth.

If she’d been standing, her knees would have given out and dropped her right on her butt.

And then there was the palm on her neck, now spearing up through her hair and clutching onto a handful of it. He held her captive, his hand fisting her hair as he angled his mouth again. In response to the soft whimper escaping her throat, he swept his tongue into her mouth. He tangled his tongue with hers once, twice, and released her.

When he pulled his mouth away, a long, satisfied sigh escaped her lips. Because that was a kiss. A kiss to rival all other kisses.

She opened her eyes to realize A) she’d closed her eyes and B) she’d at some point wrapped both hands around his forearms where she was holding tight and C) Evan looked as pleased as she felt.

“God damn, Ace. Your mouth.” His eyes flicked to her lips. Lips still tingling from the rough scrape from the stubble surrounding his.

She concurred with that sentiment. Not that she said anything. She’d gone dumb; completely mute.

He backed away, but held onto her chin and tweaked it lightly with the rough pad of one thumb. “That’s the way this is gonna go from now on.”

Her breathing went shallow, her thoughts went muzzy and her head blurred as her heart palpated to the point of panic attack.

“Sorry, Rae.”

She didn’t mean to say it, and it had only been a whisper, but by the look twisting Evan’s face—the angry look twisting his face—he’d heard. And he hadn’t liked what he’d heard.

“Sorry,” she said to him this time. “I should go.”

Unbelievably, he leaned closer. She pulled her chin back until she realized she likely had a double chin, then settled her head on her neck in a more reasonable position.

Gosh. He was making her crazy.

GIVEAWAY!!!

Giveaway Kitty!

Enter the giveaway hosted on Rafflecopter: (1) One lucky winner will win a collection of Jessica Lemmon novels!

Click on the link here or on the Giveaway Kitty to enter. Good luck and happy reading!

Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway: Never Surrender to a Scoundrel by Lily Dalton

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Title: NEVER SURRENDER TO A SCOUNDREL
Author: Lily Dalton
Publisher: Forever Romance (Grandcentral Publishing)
Series: One Scandalous Season, #3 (Never Desire a Duke, #1; Never Entice an Earl, #2)
Release Info: Available January 27, 2015!
Where to Buy: 
Amazon |  BAM |  B&N |  IndieBound |  GooglePlay |  iTunes |  Kobo

About NEVER SURRENDER TO A SCOUNDREL:

unnamedA Reckless Desire . . .
Lady Clarissa Bevington is in trouble. A reckless indiscretion has left her with two choices: ruin her family with the scandal of the Season, or marry Mr. Kincraig, the notorious scoundrel mistaken as her lover. Desperate and disgraced, Clarissa vows to love and cherish a veritable stranger, a man whose eyes smolder with danger-and undeniable desire . . .
An Unexpected Arrangement . . .
As an agent for the Crown, Lord Dominick Blackmer has spent the last two years guarding Clarissa’s grandfather from an unknown assassin while disguised as the rakehell Kincraig. His mission may now be over, but his duty has just begun. Salvaging his beautiful, impetuous wife’s virtue will cost him his fortune and his position as an officer-but it might save him from the ghosts that haunt his own past. When their marriage “in name only” leads to exquisite seduction, Dominick must risk the only thing he has left to lose . . . his heart.

My Rating:

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My Thoughts:

Never Surrender to a Scoundrel by Lily Dalton is the third novel in the One Scandalous Season series. However, this final installment of the trilogy detailing the romantic lives of the Bevington sisters easily stands on its own. You need not have read Never Desire a Duke or Never Entice an Earl in order to enjoy this novel, although I would urge you to, since they are both delightful. Lady Clarissa and her future husband appear in each of the pervious novels and its fun to catch glimpses of their future friendship. Check out the Giveaway link at the bottom of this post for a chance to win all three books!

The marriage of convenience between Lady Clarissa Bevington and Lord Dominick Blackmer (originally known to her as Mr. Kincraig) wasn’t very convenient for either party. Clarissa had given her heart –and her virtue– to another and Blackmer was anxious to return to foreign duty as an spy for the Crown. When Clarissa’s beau unexpectedly marries another, Blackmer is caught up in her scandal when her family mistakenly assumes he’s to blame for her ‘interesting condition’. Rather than forsake the kind young lady, and out of deep respect for her grandfather, Blackmer agrees to marry Clarissa, keep her secret and raise her child as his own. I particularly enjoyed when Clarissa discovered her groom wasn’t actually Mr. Kincraig, the rake she’d presumed him to be.

I found Never Surrender to a Scoundrel to be a perfectly lovely read, one of those books that leaves you smiling and satisfied (and in this case, anxiously awaiting Lily Dalton’s next book). Clarissa and Dominick have a wonderful, mature relationship. Despite the circumstances at the beginning of their marriage, they quickly grow closer and become friends. Clarissa’s defense of Dominick against her family’s unfounded vitriol was especially touching and exemplified her respect and appreciation for his sacrifice. Friendship soon develops into much more, as they give into their mutual attraction. What could have felt rushed or forced in the hands of a less talented author felt like natural and organic character development. There is plenty of Blackmer family drama and secrets from Dominick’s past missions to add excitement and mystery. These plotlines add to, rather than detract from the story of Clarissa and Dominick, and highlight the strength of their partnership.

About author Lily Dalton:
unnamedLily Dalton grew up as an Army brat, moving from place to place. Her first stop after relocating was always the local library, where she could hang out with familiar friends: Books! Lily has an English degree from Texas A & M University and after graduation worked as a legal assistant in the fields of accident reconstruction and litigation. She now lives in Houston, Texas, with her family. When she isn’t at work on her next manuscript, she spends her time trying out new recipes, cheering on her favorite Texas football teams and collecting old dishes, vintage linens and other fine “junque” from thrift stores and flea markets.

Connect with Lily’s Social Media:

Twitter: @LilyDalton  |  website |  Facebook

Excerpt (steamy and funny!):

He set the nightshirt back on the bed, and spoke over his shoulder.

“I think it’s time you returned to your room.”

He spoke the words without passion. She could only assume he’d had enough talking and wanted her to leave. The night air chilled her skin, and she wrapped her arms around her waist for warmth. She felt rebuffed by him. Stung. Her husband, the man with whom she would spend the rest of her days, did not have the slightest interest in spending a moment more in her company.

She knew she ought to calmly say ‘Very well then, I bid you good night,’ and quit the room, but she feared with a certainty that if she opened her mouth and attempted to utter a single syllable, her voice would falter and reveal the confused tumult of her emotions.

Not because she cared for him. Of course she didn’t. Clearly he did not care for her.

They’d been thrown together, and no amount of wishful thinking or good intentions would create a spark between them, when such a spark was never intended to be. She blinked away tears. Foolish tears! As if he had hurt her, but he hadn’t.

It had just been a long day, and a long night before that, and she’d made a terrible mess of everything, and she hated Quinn. And perhaps still loved him. And she was lonely. So very lonely and frightened of what the future held.

So instead she nodded jerkily, her chin outthrust, and turned on her slippered foot to escape into the dark dressing closet, taking care to close the first and the second door firmly behind her. Miss Randolph reclined in her sleeping gown and robe on the chaise with her book open and steepled across her forehead, snoring, which was just as well because Clarissa could not face the woman’s questions or her pity.

She doused the lamps and, in darkness, with only the scant light from behind the fire grate to see, crawled into bed and lay on unfamiliar sheets, her mind tangled with thoughts of… Mr. Blackmer.

Suddenly, the door swung open, and a shadow moved toward her, stealthily and swift, with only the faint white swath across his hips visible in the night. She recognized Blackmer instantly and desire ignited inside her.        He crouched above her, breathing hard, his skin still damp and the tight flex of muscles in his shoulders darkly illuminated. The scent of the soap from his bath filled her nostrils. Her pulse raced, her heart near exploding.

“You,” he growled deep in his throat. “Are my preference.”

A second later, he kissed her hard, pressing his thumb against the side of her jaw, commanding her lips to part while his tongue boldly entered and teased. She gasped for breath, stunned into half-senselessness…and surrendered, her mouth opening fully to accept each deep, possessing stroke.

He gave a husky groan. His large hands caught hers by the wrists, pinning her to the mattress. She squirmed beneath him—but with no intent to escape.

Moments before he had dismissed her coldly, and made her feel invisible and unwanted and yet in this moment, he revealed his true feelings, ones he’d tried to conceal. She knew without a doubt that her husband desired her. Something about that made her weak, and—

His mouth moved to her cheek…her neck, leaving her skin hot and awakened wherever his lips touched. Sensations she’d never experienced spiraled up from inside her, delicious and achingly sweet, awakening a need in her body and rendering her unexpectedly wild.

God help her, she didn’t understand, but she wanted him as well. The moment he released her hands she moaned and seized his shoulders, sliding her hands upward over his neck, finding unexpected appreciation in the powerful contraction and flux of his muscles beneath her palms. He exhaled, filling her mouth with his breath, and sucked her bottom lip—

Only to groan and twist away.

No. She reached, her hands trailing over his shoulders and his arms, desperately wanting more. More of his kiss, and his warm, firm skin. And yes, for him to ravish her so she would forget—

Then nothing.

The bed creaked, relieved of his weight. She heard his sharp exhalation of breath–a laugh, perhaps?

“Good night then, Mrs. Blackmer,” he murmured.

Silence filled the room.

“Good night,” she answered breathlessly.

He crossed the room, disappearing into the dressing closet, gone the way he had come. She heard the door close.

After a long moment of silence, Miss Randolph’s voice came from the direction of the chaise. “Well that was rather thrilling.”

GIVEAWAY!!! 

Giveaway Kitty!

Enter the giveaway hosted on Rafflecopter: (5) Lucky winners will receive the complete ‘One Scandalous Season’ trilogy by Lily Dalton

Click the link here or on Giveaway Kitty to enter. Good luck and happy reading!