Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Book Review & Release Day Blitz ~ ON THE PLUS SIDE (A Perfect Fit #2) by Alison Bliss {Giveaway}

Author: Alison Bliss
Series: A Perfect Fit, #2
On Sale: June 27, 2017
Publisher: Forever
Mass Market: $7.99 USD
eBook: $5.99 USD
Audio: $22.98

Big girls don't cry. They go after what they want.

Thanks to her bangin' curves, Valerie Carmichael has always turned heads-with the exception of seriously sexy Logan Mathis. Just Valerie's luck that the object of her lust-filled affection is also best friends with her overprotective brother. But Valerie's determined to get Logan's attention . . . even if it means telling a teeny little lie to get a job at his new bar.

Logan can't remember a time when Valerie didn't secretly fuel all his hottest fantasies. Now the curvaceous she-devil is working behind his bar, tempting him every damn night. It's only when he finds Valerie's naughty things-to-do list that Logan decides to break every rule in the book-by making each red-hot deed a reality.

No one warned them that they were going to fall this hard. And no one warned them that sometimes the smallest secrets can have the biggest consequences.

Valerie and Logan have been attracted to each other for years, but nothing ever came of it because of an age difference between the two and Valerie’s over-protected brother, who just happened to be Logan’s best friend.  Eight years later, Logan is back in town and that attraction from so long ago cannot be contained and the sparks that had started years before finally explode into a raging inferno that can not be denied.

Oh, my gosh!  On the Plus Side was absolutely amazing y’all!  I knew I was going to like this series after reading Size Matters, but now, I am hooked and totally in love.   I liked Valerie when she was introduced in the last book, but her character totally shined in this installment and I believe that is what made this story so amazing.  Valerie has so much confidence in herself and doesn’t back down from anything….well, maybe her brother Brent.  And Logan?  I totally fell in love with him.  Although he had a tendency to turn all cave-man-like (which was totally hot by the way!), he had a heart of gold that was just too sweet.

There is so much to like in this story.  Alison Bliss has created characters that many of us can relate too and doesn’t sugar coat anything.  Her characters and their situations are real which makes this story flow so effortlessly.  With humor, drama and steamy sex scenes, this book has it all and was truly a delight to read.

Right from the start, I knew that this was going to be a fun story, and I was not disappointed.  I simply adored this book!  It was such a cute story that had me laughing out loud throughout.  On the Plus Side had just the right amount of humor and passion which made this a highly enjoyable read.  Alison Bliss has a true talent for creating amazing stories that readers will instantly connect too.  On the Plus Side could be read as a stand-alone, but if you haven't already, I urge you to pick up Size Matters.  This is such a fun series that I know fans of contemporary romance will fall in love with it.

Overall, this was an amazing story that I couldn’t put down – wonderful from start to finish.  I can’t wait to see what comes next!

5 stars

Valerie Carmichael needed a drink. A strong one. Because it was the only way she envisioned herself getting through the night.
An elbow nudged into her side, bringing her thoughts back to the crowded bar. “I can’t see anything through all of these people,” Brett said, scanning the room with his eyes. “Come on, let’s go to the other side so I can get a better view.”
Sighing, Valerie trudged behind him without a word.
When Brett had asked her to attend the grand opening of Bottoms Up, a new bar in their hometown of Granite, Texas, she’d hesitated to say yes. Sure, she was curious what the inside of the recently remodeled bar looked like and had no doubt the place would be jam-packed with handsome, available men. But it was still the last place on earth she wanted to be.
She knew better than to hang out in bars with her older and only—thank God—brother. Every time she’d done so in the past, the nights had always ended the same way. Brett would spend the entire evening hovering over her like a rabid pit bull, daring any single guy with a glint in his eye to look her way. Because Valerie turned heads. She always had.
Oh, she wasn’t silly enough to believe she looked like some gorgeous supermodel with a lean, trim figure or anything. She definitely didn’t. But she had a pretty face, banging plus-size curves, and a lively personality. And that was good enough for her. Valerie was just…Valerie. And damn proud of it.
Across the room, Sam and Leah emerged from the dense crowd, with a beer bottle for him and a glass of water for her. Apparently, Leah was still on that damn diet and counting calories so she would fit into her wedding dress. Though why she didn’t just buy the dress in a larger size was beyond Valerie.
Leah blinked at the sight of her. “Val? What are you doing here? You said you weren’t coming.”
Valerie shrugged. “I changed my mind.”
“Are you feeling okay?”
“Yeah, sure. Why?”
“When you said you didn’t want to go out, I assumed you were sick. You never turn down a night out.” Leah placed her palm lightly against Valerie’s forehead. “You sure you don’t have the flu or something?”
Valerie laughed and pushed her friend’s hand away. “Oh, stop it. I just didn’t feel like getting dressed up. I’m getting tired of the whole bar scene.”
Then Valerie’s heart stopped, along with her lips. Oh God.

Brett stood there talking to a tall, dark-haired man who had one thumb hooked in the front pocket of his jeans while he leaned comfortably against the wall with his right shoulder. She couldn’t see the other guy’s face, but she didn’t need to. Valerie recognized all six feet, two inches of him. Logan Mathis.  



Alison Bliss grew up in Small Town, Texas, but currently resides in the Midwest with her husband and two sons. With so much testosterone in her home, it's no wonder she writes "girl books." She believes the best way to know if someone is your soul mate is by canoeing with them because if you both make it back alive, it's obviously meant to be. Alison pens the type of books she loves to read most: fun, steamy love stories with heart, heat, laughter, and usually a cowboy or two. As she calls it, "Romance...with a sense of humor."

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Book Blitz & Giveaway ~ Path of Thieves by Sunniva Dee

Path of Thieves 

Sunniva Dee
Publication date: June 27th 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult

Football hero by day and thief by night, Charles “Cugs” McConnely leads a double life in the small town of Newbark, Florida. At sundown, the seventeen-year-old turns burglar, forced into the business by the man who should be teaching him the difference between right and wrong: his father.
Cugs is a pro at both games, but only one can secure him a college scholarship. It should be an easy decision, a no-brainer—if Newbark hadn’t proffered the only life he knows.
After run-ins with Nadine Paganelli, his accidental victim and the sole person to have caught him in the act, Cugs starts to realize that hearts can be stolen too.
When his long-lost sister makes contact, lies are uncovered and truths revealed. Suddenly, Cugs finds himself questioning both plans and loyalties. Because sometimes the only way to move forward is by pulling the bottom out of the past.
Last night wasn’t good. Dad’s getting more eager. He wants to accomplish so much on his shopping sprees, blaming a more expensive life now that Step-Cynth’s with us. I’m not in a place to meddle, but it seems six-packs of aprons aren’t the only things she buys on his bill.
My father’s becoming sloppy. Yesterday, we returned in the early morning after hitting almost a dozen houses. The owners of four of them were still at home. Yeah. He isn’t doing his homework the way he used to.
Thing is I’m tired. I don’t see a change in sight. Now, I try to keep my eyes open as I drive the wreck to Orlando to meet up with Keyon. Which is going to come back and bite me in the ass. What other option did I have though, come off as a coward to, in the words of Liza, “freaking Keyon Arias of Alliance Cage Warriors?”
Keyon is already there when I enter the Hard Rock Café. He fills out his side of the booth with fighter shoulders and wide thighs. Elbows on the table and bent over a glass of water, he lifts a hand in greeting as soon as he sees me. My chance to chicken out just dissipated.
“Cugs,” he says, voice husky like it is after a fight. Maybe that’s his voice now. I remember it light, prepubescent, I guess, from back when my own had the pitch of a little kid.
“Keyon.” I tip my head, acknowledging him without a smile, and then I sit down in front of him.
I think of the possibility of going to Gainesville for the tryouts. “Ice water.”
Keyon doesn’t need to do much to get the waitress over. Half-turned to our table, she’s hovering with a watchful eye. When he glances up, she meets his stare immediately and hurries over.
“How are you?” From his expression, he’s not just being polite. He wants to know. “It’s been so long since we’ve talked.”
“I’m good,” I lie.
“What have you been up to? Your sister has been trying to get a hold of you.”
I’ve steeled myself for questions, assuming they would come. I didn’t think he’d start with them right away though.
“Oh you know, living it up in Newbark.” I do a long, purposely fake nod hoping it will make him laugh. Instead, he studies me, starting with my eyes then traveling over my face.
“You liking it there? How’s your old man?”
I shrug, unable to lie about him. “Married again. To a girl Paislee’s age.”
His eyes widen a little. “Is that so?”
“Yeah, as of a few months ago.”
“Geez.” He blows air out his nose. “New stepmother, huh?”
“Yeah, she isn’t exactly Mom.” And there, I said it. I hope he doesn’t notice. I open my mouth to add something, whatever, to get us off the subject, but he jumps in before me.
“You miss your mother?”
Snowmen. Hot chocolate. Cold summer lakes. Blue lips.
About the Author

Between studies, teaching, and advising, Sunniva has spent her entire adult life in a college environment. Most of her novels are new adult romance geared toward smart, passionate readers with a love for eclectic language and engaging their brain as well as their heart while reading.
Born in the Land of the Midnight Sun, the author spent her early twenties making the world her playground. Southern Europe: Spain, Italy, Greece--Argentina: Buenos Aires, in particular. The United States finally kept her interest, and after half a decade in Los Angeles, she now lounges in the beautiful city of Savannah.
Sometimes, Sunniva writes with a paranormal twist (Shattering Halos, Stargazer, and Cat Love). At other times, it's contemporary (Pandora Wild Child, Leon's Way, Adrenaline Crush, Walking Heartbreak, and Dodging Trains, coming in late March 2016).
This author is the happiest when her characters let their emotions run off with them, shaping her stories in ways she never foresaw. She loves bad-boys and good-boys run amok, and like in real life, her goal is to keep the reader on her toes until the end of each story.
Author Links 


Monday, June 26, 2017

Release Week Blitz: Girl on the Verge by Pintip Dunn - Excerpt and Giveaway

Hello Readers! Welcome to the Release Week Blitz for
Girl on the Verge by Pintip Dunn!
Check out the excerpt below, and be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
Congratulations Pintip!!
From the author of The Darkest Lie comes a compelling, provocative story for fans of I Was Here and Vanishing Girls, about a high school senior straddling two worlds, unsure how she fits in either—and the journey of self-discovery that leads her to surprising truths.
In her small Kansas town, at her predominantly white school, Kanchana doesn’t look like anyone else. But at home, her Thai grandmother chides her for being too westernized. Only through the clothing Kan designs in secret can she find a way to fuse both cultures into something distinctly her own. When her mother agrees to provide a home for a teenage girl named Shelly, Kan sees a chance to prove herself useful. Making Shelly feel comfortable is easy at first—her new friend is eager to please, embraces the family’s Thai traditions, and clearly looks up to Kan. Perhaps too much. Shelly seems to want everything Kanchana has, even the blond, blue-eyed boy she has a crush on. As Kan’s growing discomfort compels her to investigate Shelly’s past, she’s shocked to find how much it intersects with her own—and just how far Shelly will go to belong…

Girl on the Verge 
by Pintip Dunn 
Publication Date: June 27, 2017 
Publisher: Kensington

“Hey. Look at me, please.” I nudge her shoulder, and she lifts her tear-stained face. “I messed up tonight. But it won’t happen again. No boy is going to come between us. I promised.”
She widens her eyes. “You still plan to keep your word?”
“Of course. I don’t make promises just for the hell of it, you know.”
A smile ghosts across her lips, but I can tell she’s still hurt. My heart contracts even more. “I’m here for you, Shelly. How can I prove that?”
“Well, there is one thing. . . .” She glances over her shoulder, although no one else is here. “Never mind. You’re going to think it’s silly. Forget I said anything.”
“I won’t. We’re friends, right? You can tell me anything, and I won’t think you’re silly.”
She takes a deep breath. “Okay. Fine.” The words tumble out. “It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, ever since I was a kid. Problem was, I never had anyone to do it with.”
“What is it?”
“I want us to be blood sisters.”
A chill creeps up my spine. Blood sisters? As in, my blood mixed with hers? This is unsanitary at best, deadly at worst.
“You hate the idea, don’t you?” she moans. “Forget it. I knew it was silly. . . .”
“No, no. You just surprised me, that’s all.” My mind spins, as I try to think of how to respond. “I don’t have anything against the idea, in theory. But you know all that stuff we’ve heard, about AIDS and other diseases and infections. Maybe I’m just being silly. . . .”
“Hey, it’s a valid concern. And I could tell you I’m clean, but you can never be too sure, right?” She wrinkles her forehead. “I’ve got it! We can do our own modified version. We’ll drop our blood onto a clean surface and let the liquid mix there. That way, we’ve performed the ceremony, but we’re still protecting ourselves. What do you think?”
“Um . . .” NO! my mind screams. Every cell in my body rebels against the thought. Mixing our blood is just gross. And weird. There’s nothing in me that wants any part of this. I rack my brain, searching for a reason, any reason at all that won’t offend her.   
“Look, I know we only met a couple weeks ago,” Shelly says in a small voice, “but I feel this connection with you. Like we were always meant to be friends. This ceremony represents that. You’re my sister, through and through.”
I take a deep breath. This idea she’s suggesting is more than a little creepy. But Shelly’s been through such a rough time lately. It’s not going to kill me to drop a little blood on a cutting board. If it makes her happy, I should just say yes. It’s not that big a deal . . . even if it makes all the hair stand up on my neck. 
“Okay, fine,” I say, before I can change my mind. “Let’s do it.”

Pintip is a New York Times bestselling author of YA fiction. She graduated from Harvard University, magna cum laude, with an A.B. in English Literature and Language. She received her J.D. at Yale Law School, where she was an editor of the YALE LAW JOURNAL.
Pintip's first novel, FORGET TOMORROW won the RWA RITA® award for Best First Book. Her other novels include THE DARKEST LIE, REMEMBER YESTERDAY, and the novella, BEFORE TOMORROW. She is represented by literary agent Beth Miller of Writers House.
She lives with her husband and children in Maryland.
Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Book Review ~ Bring Her Home by David Bell

Bring Her Home
by David Bell

In the breathtaking new thriller from David Bell, bestselling author of Since She Went Away and Somebody I Used to Know, the fate of two missing teenage girls becomes a father's worst nightmare....

Just a year and a half after the tragic death of his wife, Bill Price's fifteen-year-old daughter, Summer, and her best friend, Haley, disappear. Days later, the girls are found in a city park. Haley is dead at the scene, while Summer is left beaten beyond recognition and clinging to life.

As Bill holds vigil over Summer's bandaged body, the only sound the unconscious girl can make is one cryptic and chilling word: No. And the more time Bill spends with Summer, the more he wonders what happened to her. Or if the injured girl in the hospital bed is really his daughter at all.

When troubling new questions about Summer's life surface, Bill is not prepared for the aftershocks. He'll soon discover that both the living and the dead have secrets. And that searching for the truth will tear open old wounds that pierce straight to the heart of his family...

Click HERE to add to Goodreads

In Bring Her Home, the reader is instantly thrown into the mystery of two missing girls, Summer and Haley.  Days later, they are found - one dead and one beaten up beyond recognition.  As the hunt for the person who committed this horrible crime continues, Summer’s father discovers that perhaps his hands-off approach to raising a child might not be the best.  Secrets are revealed and everyone is a suspect in this compelling story that will keep you on the edge of your seat and begging for the truth.

The first half of the story went slowly for me, but eventually the action did pick up and I found that I couldn’t put the book down.  There are a lot of details, twists, and misdirection in this intriguing story but nothing to overwhelming or confusing.  There were a few things that just didn’t work for me, or that I found unbelievable -  mostly regarding the police procedures and identifying remains of a deceased person.  Also, I just can’t imagine not being able to recognize my own child, no matter how beaten up they were. Thankfully, I am not a subject matter expert on either account, but these few things did not work for me.

Overall, despite the few issues that didn't work for me, this was a enjoyable read that was full of intrigue and tension that kept my interest and had me guessing throughout.  The characters are complex and well-developed and the writing was superb.   This was my first David Bell novel, but it won’t be the last as his wonderful storytelling ability has me hooked.

3 ½ stars 

David Bell is the author of seven novels from Berkley/Penguin, including BRING HER HOME, SINCE SHE WENT AWAY, SOMEBODY I USED TO KNOW, THE FORGOTTEN GIRL, NEVER COME BACK, THE HIDING PLACE, and CEMETERY GIRL. His work has been translated into numerous foreign languages, and in 2013, he won the prestigious Prix Polar International de Cognac for best crime novel by an international author. He is an associate professor of English at Western Kentucky University where he directs the MFA program in creative writing. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, he spends his free time rooting for the Reds and Bengals, watching movies, and walking in the cemetery near his house. He lives in Bowling Green, Kentucky, with his wife, writer Molly McCaffrey.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

New Release ~ LOST AND FOUND SISTERS by Jill Shalvis

by Jill Shalvis
On Sale: June 20, 2017
William Morrow Trade Paperback Original ISBN: 9780062448118
Pages: 400 | Price: $14.99
Also available in eBook: ISBN: 9780062448125 | $7.99
And downloadable audio: ISBN: 9780062680648 | $24.99
From New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis comes her first women's fiction novel—an unforgettable story of friendship, love, family, and sisterhood.

They say life can change in an instant…
     After losing her sister in a devastating car accident, chef Quinn Weller is finally getting her life back on track. She appears to have it all: a loving family, a dream job in one of L.A.'s hottest eateries, and a gorgeous boyfriend dying to slip an engagement ring on her finger. So why does she feel so empty, like she's looking for a missing piece she can't find?
     The answer comes when a lawyer tracks down Quinn and reveals a bombshell secret and a mysterious inheritance that only she can claim. This shocking revelation washes over Quinn like a tidal wave. Her whole life has been a lie.
     On impulse, Quinn gives up her job, home, and boyfriend. She heads up the coast to the small hometown of Wildstone, California, which is just a few hours north, but feels worlds apart from Los Angeles. Though she doesn't quite fit in right away, she can't help but be drawn to the town’s simple pleasures…and the handsome, dark-haired stranger who offers friendship with no questions asked.
     As Quinn settles into Wildstone, she discovers there's another surprise in store for her. The inheritance isn't a house or money, but rather something earthshattering, something that will make her question everything she thought she knew about herself, about her family. Now with a world of possibilities opening up to Quinn, she must decide if this new life is the one she was always meant to have—and the one that could finally give her the fulfillment she's searched so long for.

To Mick’s relief, he caught Quinn in the parking lot, leaning against her car, her thumbs moving furiously over the screen of her phone. When she saw him, she grimaced.
He lifted his hands and stayed out of her personal space. “Thought you could use a ride back to the B and B,” he said.
“I’m not driving.” She lifted her phone. “I’m trying to get an Uber.”
He smiled. “How’s that going?”
She sighed and slipped her phone into her pocket. “So Wildstone doesn’t have drive-throughs, Thai takeout, or Uber? Seriously?”
“We have other things.”
“Yes,” she said. “Ghosts. Big bugs. Cute dogs. And girlfriends, apparently.”
“Lena’s not my girlfriend,” he said. “She’s Boomer’s. Sort of.” He shook his head. “It’s complicated.”
She didn’t take her eyes off him. “But you’ve slept together.”
He arched a brow.
“I’m sorry,” she said, closing her eyes. “That was rude. There’s a chemistry there, and a familiarity, that’s all. You know what? Don’t listen to me. My tongue’s running the show and I think I’m just jealous at how everyone else seems to take life’s shit in stride and keep going. I haven’t learned that trick and I need to. And how to keep going, that is. Like the Energizer Bunny. Or my electric toothbrush. God.” She pressed her hands to her face. “I really need to stop talking. Make me stop talking!”
He took her hand and tugged her to his truck.
“Wait,” she said, putting a hand to his chest and fisting it in his shirt to hold him to her. “You’re not a murderer or a rapist or anything like that, right?”
He lifted a hand. “Scout’s honor.”
“Were you a Boy Scout?”
Laughing a little at that because he’d been just about the furthest thing from a Boy Scout, he gently pushed her into the passenger seat and leaned in to buckle her seat belt, and suddenly their faces were an inch from each other. He heard her suck in a breath and he did the same.
Talk about chemistry.
“Mick?” she whispered.
“Are you feeling something?”
“You could say that,” he murmured. “You?”
She licked her lips and he nearly groaned. “I think so,” she whispered.
“That’s good.”
“Are you going to kiss me?”
He cupped her face, let his thumbs trace her jawbone, his fingers sinking into her silky waves. “No,” he said quietly. “And not because I don’t want to, but because when I do, I want to know you’re ready. That you’ll feel it.”
She sighed. “Guys do whatever they want all the time, no emotions necessary. I want that skill.” Another shaky breath escaped her, and since they were literally an inch apart, they shared air for a single heartbeat during which neither of them moved.
Her gaze dropped to his mouth. “Okay, so I’m definitely feeling things.” She hesitated and then her hands came up to his chest. “Maybe we should test it out to be sure.”
God, she was the sweetest temptation he’d ever met, and he wanted nothing more than to cover her mouth with his. Instead, he brushed his mouth to her cheek.
“Please, Mick,” she whispered, her exhale warming his throat. He loved the “please,” and he wanted to do just that more than anything. But when she tried to turn her head into his, to line up their mouths, he gently tightened his grip, dragging his mouth along her smooth skin instead, making his way to her ear.
“Not yet,” he whispered, letting his lips brush over her earlobe and the sensitive skin beneath it.
She moaned and clutched him. “Why not?”
It took every ounce of control he had to lift his head and meet her gaze. “Because I want to make sure you’re really with me, that you’re feeling everything I’m feeling. That there’ll be no doubt, no regrets.”
“You sure have a lot of requirements.”
He laughed. And she was right, it was all big talk for a guy who didn’t do relationships anymore. Still, he forced himself to step back and shut the passenger door.
As he rounded the hood to the driver’s side, he tried to remind himself of all the reasons she was a bad idea. He lived two hundred miles away and he was hoping to move his mom up by him and never come back here. Not to mention that Quinn lived an equal two hundred miles in the opposite direction and she was in a deeply vulnerable place. No way would he even think about taking advantage of that.
But when he slid behind the wheel and their eyes locked, he realized that while his mind could stand firm, the rest of his body wasn’t on board with the in-control program. 

New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis lives in a small town in the Sierras full of quirky characters. Any resemblance to the quirky characters in her books is, um, mostly coincidental. Look for Jill’s bestselling, award-winning books wherever romances are sold and visit her website,www.jillshalvis.com, for a complete book list and daily blog detailing her city-girl-living-in-the-mountains adventures.