General Blog Posts

It’s Monday (August 19, 2019)!
What Are You Reading! #IMWAYR
#Books #Reading #TBRList

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? hosted by Kathryn at Bookdate is a weekly post to share what you’ve recently finished reading, what you’re currently reading, and what you plan on reading this upcoming week.

 

So here is what I just read, am reading, and what I plan to read next:

 

What I Read Last Week:

 

Title: An Alaskan Christmas (Wild River #1)

Authors: Jennifer Snow

Immediate Thoughts: Sweet, sexy, and heartwarming!

Rating: 9/10

Publication Date: September 24, 2019

 

 

Title: Missing Person

Authors: Sarah Lotz

Immediate Thoughts: Simmering, mysterious, and sinister!

Rating: 7.5/10

Publication Date: September 3, 2019

 

 

Title: Butterfly in Frost

Author: Sylvia Day

Immediate Thoughts: Quick, fervent, and twisty!

Rating: 7/10

Publication Date: August 27, 2019

 

 

Title: Winter in Paradise (Paradise #1)

Author: Elin Hilderbrand

Immediate Thoughts: Mysterious, romantic, and intense!

Rating: 9/10

Publication Date: October 9, 2018

 

 

What I’m Currently Reading:

 

When disaster strikes, paradise calls…
As a published novelist, Lila Rose has been writing about fictional weddings all her life. But disaster strikes on her own big day when she hears her philandering fiancé, Daniel whispering sweet nothings to someone else.

With her dream day shattered, all Lila wants to do is run and hide, so she decides to fly solo on her own honeymoon.

When Daniel arrives in the resort with his new squeeze, Lila strikes up a ‘showmance’ with hot new movie star, Freddie Bianchi. Freddie is perfect for the part and Lila soon relaxes into her leading lady role.

But as truth starts to merge with fiction, could real love be in the air?

A sizzling holiday romance, perfect for fans of Sophie Kinsella, Lindsey Kelk and Sophie Ranald’s Sorry Not Sorry.

 

What I’m Reading Next:

 

From the international bestselling author of The Gilded Hour comes Sara Donati’s enthralling epic about two trailblazing female doctors in nineteenth-century New York

Obstetrician Dr. Sophie Savard returns home to the achingly familiar rhythms of Manhattan in the early spring of 1884 to rebuild her life after the death of her husband. With the help of Dr. Anna Savard, her dearest friend, cousin, and fellow physician she plans to continue her work aiding the disadvantaged women society would rather forget.

As Sophie sets out to construct a new life for herself, Anna’s husband, Detective-Sergeant Jack Mezzanotte calls on them both to consult on two new cases: the wife of a prominent banker has disappeared into thin air, and the corpse of a young woman is found with baffling wounds that suggest a killer is on the loose. In New York it seems that the advancement of women has brought out the worst in some men. Unable to ignore the plight of New York’s less fortunate, these intrepid cousins draw on all resources to protect their patients.

 

Have you read any of my upcoming reads? What do you have coming up?

#BookReview #AudioBook
Never Have I Ever by Lauren Blakely
@laurenblakely3 @audible_com

#BookReview #AudioBook Never Have I Ever by Lauren Blakely @laurenblakely3 @audible_comTitle: Never Have I Ever

Author: Lauren Blakely

Narrated by: Amanda Ronconi, Jason Clarke

Published by: Audible Studios on July 30,2019

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Length: 8 hrs and 20 mins

Format: Audiobook

Source: Audible

Book Rating: 9/10

 

Synopsis:

What happens when two frenemies can’t stop pushing each other’s buttons? Find out in this tender, laugh-out-loud funny romance from number-one New York Times best-selling author Lauren Blakely, available in audio first!

Never Have I Ever been so infuriated by a man I wanted to kiss.

They say opposites attract, but I beg to differ. Combust is more like it. Because every single time I talk to Zach Nolan, I see red.

The too-good-looking, too-smart, too-effortlessly-charming single dad who works down the hall from me has turned getting under my skin into a sport. Call it the battle of wits between the wedding planner and the divorce attorney. Trouble is, when we’re forced into closer quarters, planning an engagement party for our best friends, I start to see his other sides.

And I fear I’m falling for the enemy.

***

I’m not out to make friends. My goals are simple — fight till the end for my clients, and my family. The last thing I need is a vibrant, outgoing, snarky, and surprisingly big-hearted wedding planner to spend my precious free time with…except, watching Piper bond with my daughter just might break down the cinder block walls I’ve built around my heart these last few years. Second chances don’t come around for guys like me…or do they?


Review:

Spicy, addictive, and intriguing!

Never Have I Ever is a hilarious, alluring, enemies-to-more romance that introduces us to the sweet, sassy, charming Piper who spends her days making brides happy and fairy tale weddings come true, and the intelligent, sharp, confident, divorce lawyer Zach who after losing the first love of his life is content to fill his days battling for his clients and spending time with his children.

The writing is titillating and fun. The characters are appealing, gregarious, and witty. And the plot is a sultry, push-pull tale full of red-hot chemistry, flirty banter, sexual innuendoes, tender moments, friendship, family, and unconditional love.

I have always been a fan of Lauren Blakely, and Never Have I Ever has just become one of my favourites. I loved the characters, I loved the storyline, and I loved the dual narration by Ronconi and Clarke. This story is an Audible Original title and is available now for free with any Audible Escape subscription. 

 

This audiobook is available now.

Pick up a copy from the following audible link.

 

Thank you to Audible for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Lauren Blakely

A #1 New York Times Bestselling, #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling, and #1 Audible Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that's sweet, sexy and witty. Her heroines are strong and smart and her heroes have hearts of gold and fantastic funny bones. She'd love to give you a free book today! Check out her web site to grab your free read: https://laurenblakely.com/one-free-book/

#BookReview
The Doll Factory by Elizabeth Macneal
@esmacneal @SimonSchusterCA

#BookReview The Doll Factory by Elizabeth Macneal @esmacneal @SimonSchusterCATitle: The Doll Factory

Author: Elizabeth Macneal

Published by: Simon & Schuster on August 13, 2019

Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 386

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Simon & Schuster Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

The Doll Factory, the debut novel by Elizabeth Macneal, is an intoxicating story of art, obsession and possession.

London. 1850. The Great Exhibition is being erected in Hyde Park and among the crowd watching the spectacle two people meet. For Iris, an aspiring artist, it is the encounter of a moment – forgotten seconds later, but for Silas, a collector entranced by the strange and beautiful, that meeting marks a new beginning.

When Iris is asked to model for pre-Raphaelite artist Louis Frost, she agrees on the condition that he will also teach her to paint. Suddenly her world begins to expand, to become a place of art and love.

But Silas has only thought of one thing since their meeting, and his obsession is darkening . . .


Review:

Gothic, evocative, and eerie!

The Doll Factory is a riveting, gritty tale set in London in the mid-1800s at a time when the city was bustling, scavenging was prevalent, respectability meant everything, The Great Exhibition was a structural marvel, and the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood was redefining visual art.

There are three main memorable characters in this novel; Iris Whittle, a young red-headed girl who dreams of becoming an artist and unconsciously catches the eye of many; Silas Reed, a strange fellow with a morbid fascination with taxidermy and a macabre, obsessive nature; and Albie, a young guttersnipe who spends his days traipsing the streets for a shilling and dreaming of a mouth full of pearly whites.

The prose is ominous and rich. The supporting characters are multilayered, flawed, and believable. And the plot is an insightful, compelling tale of familial responsibilities, strength, duty, coming-of-age, art, friendship, passion, desire, obsession, loss, love, survival, and the roles of women in Victorian England.

Overall, The Doll Factory is an intense, creative, menacing read by Macneal that does a beautiful job of interweaving historical facts and compelling fiction into a sinister, suspenseful mystery that is deliciously atmospheric and highly entertaining.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                                            

 

 

Thank you to Simon & Schuster Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Elizabeth Macneal

Elizabeth Macneal was born in Edinburgh and now lives in East London. She is a writer and potter and works from a small studio at the bottom of her garden. She read English Literature at Oxford University, before working in the City for several years. In 2017, she completed the Creative Writing MA at UEA in 2017 where she was awarded the Malcolm Bradbury scholarship.

The Doll Factory, Elizabeth's debut novel, won the Caledonia Noel Award 2018. It will be published in twenty-eight languages and TV rights have sold to Buccaneer Media.

Photography by Mat Smith.

#BlogTour #BookReview
Playing for Keeps by Kendall Ryan
@KendallRyan1

#BlogTour #BookReview Playing for Keeps by Kendall Ryan @KendallRyan1Title: Playing for Keeps

Author: Kendall Ryan

Series: Hot Jocks #1

Published by: Dream Press on August 13, 2019

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 258

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Kendall Ryan

Book Rating: 9/10

 

Synopsis:

I’ve never been so stupid in my entire life.

Elise Parrish, my teammate’s incredibly sweet and gorgeous younger sister, should have been off-limits, but my hockey stick didn’t get the memo.

After our team won the championship, our flirting turned physical, and I took her to bed. Then shame sent her running the next morning from our catastrophic mistake.

She thinks I don’t remember that night – but every detail is burned into my brain so deeply, I’ll never forget. The feel of her in my arms, the soft whimpers of pleasure I coaxed from her perfect lips….

And now I’ve spent three months trying to get her out of my head, but I’m starting to understand she’s the only girl I’ll ever want. 

I have one shot to show her I can be exactly what she needs, but Elise won’t be easily convinced. 

That’s okay, because I’m good under pressure, and this time, I’m playing for keeps.

Get ready to meet your new favorite hot jocks in an all new series of stand-alone novels. If you like sexy, confident men who know how to handle a stick (on and off the ice), and smart women who are strong enough to keep all those big egos in check, this series of athlete romances is perfect for you!


Review:

Spicy, sexy, and sweet!

Playing for Keeps is a beguiling, frisky, passionate tale that mixes the charming, slightly insecure Elise who may finally get more than just a drunken hookup with her forever crush, and Justin, the cocky, handsome hockey player who may finally discover his best friend’s little sister is more than he ever could have imagined and is definitely worthy of a long time instead of just a good time.

The writing style is smooth and steamy. The characters are playful, spirited, hesitant, and endearing. And the plot is a delicious combination of family, friendship, undeniable attraction, smoking chemistry, enticing innuendoes, light drama, swoon-worthy romance, and sporty action.

Overall, Playing for Keeps is an enticing, adorable, sizzling start to the Hot Jocks series and I can’t wait to read Owen & Becca’s story, All the Way, when it’s published September 24th.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                                       

 

 

 

About Kendall Ryan

A New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of more than two dozen titles, Kendall Ryan has sold over 1.5 million books and her books have been translated into several languages in countries around the world. She’s a traditionally published author with Simon & Schuster and Harper Collins UK, as well as an independently published author. Since she first began self-publishing in 2012, she’s appeared at #1 on Barnes & Noble and iBooks charts around the world. Her books have also appeared on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists more than three dozen times. Ryan has been featured in such publications as USA Today, Newsweek, and InTouch Magazine.

 

Thank you to Kendall Ryan for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

#BookReview
The Winemaker’s Wife by Kristin Harmel
@kristinharmel @GalleryBooks @SimonSchusterCA

#BookReview The Winemaker’s Wife by Kristin Harmel @kristinharmel @GalleryBooks @SimonSchusterCATitle: The Winemaker's Wife

Author: Kristin Harmel

Published by: Gallery Books on August 13, 2019

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 400

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Simon & Schuster Canada

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

Champagne, 1940: Inès has just married Michel, the owner of storied champagne house Maison Chauveau, when the Germans invade. As the danger mounts, Michel turns his back on his marriage to begin hiding munitions for the Résistance. Inès fears they’ll be exposed, but for Céline, half-Jewish wife of Chauveau’s chef de cave, the risk is even greater—rumors abound of Jews being shipped east to an unspeakable fate.

When Céline recklessly follows her heart in one desperate bid for happiness, and Inès makes a dangerous mistake with a Nazi collaborator, they risk the lives of those they love—and the champagne house that ties them together.

New York, 2019: Liv Kent has just lost everything when her eccentric French grandmother shows up unannounced, insisting on a trip to France. But the older woman has an ulterior motive—and a tragic, decades-old story to share. When past and present finally collide, Liv finds herself on a road to salvation that leads right to the caves of the Maison Chauveau.


Review:

Informative, beautiful, and tragic!

The Winemaker’s Wife is a stirring, immersive story set in France during the early 1940s, as well present day, that is told primarily from three different perspectives; Inès Chauveau, a young wife who after feeling neglected and misunderstood naively makes choices that have far-reaching, life-changing consequences; Céline Laurent, the half-Jewish wife of Chauveau’s winemaker who lives in constant fear of the advancing Germans except when deep within the vineyard caves where she finds solace, hope, contentment, and love; and Liv Kent, a recently divorced American who journeys to France at the request of her grandmother only to uncover a family history that’s littered with secrets, betrayals, and sacrifices.

The prose is preceptive, vivid, and sincere. The characters are courageous, vulnerable, and resilient. And the plot is a heartrending tale that gives us a unique view into the struggles, sacrifices, horrors, and bravery of those who lived and survived in the Champagne region during this heinous time in history.

The Winemaker’s Wife is, ultimately, a story about life, love, loss, deception, determination, perseverance, resistance efforts, intricacies of winemaking, and the importance of forgiveness. It’s pensive, moving, and thoroughly absorbing and a fantastic choice for historical fiction fans and book clubs everywhere.

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                                            

 

 

Thank you to Simon & Schuster Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Kristin Harmel

Kristin Harmel is the international bestselling author of THE ROOM ON RUE AMELIE, THE SWEETNESS OF FORGETTING, THE LIFE INTENDED, WHEN WE MEET AGAIN, and several other novels. Her latest, THE WINEMAKER'S WIFE, is coming in August 2019 from Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster. A former reporter for PEOPLE magazine, Kristin has also freelanced for many other publications, including American Baby, Men’s Health, Glamour, Woman’s Day, Travel + Leisure, and more.

Kristin grew up in Peabody, Mass.; Worthington, Ohio; and St. Petersburg, Fla., and she graduated with a degree in journalism (with a minor in Spanish) from the University of Florida. After spending time living in Paris, she now lives in Orlando, Fla., with her husband and young son.

Photograph by Phil Art Studio, Reims, France.

It’s Monday (August 12, 2019)!
What Are You Reading! #IMWAYR
#Books #Reading #TBRList

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? hosted by Kathryn at Bookdate is a weekly post to share what you’ve recently finished reading, what you’re currently reading, and what you plan on reading this upcoming week.

 

So here is what I just read, am reading, and what I plan to read next:

 

What I Read Last Week:

 

Title: The Paris Orphan

Authors: Natasha Lester

Immediate Thoughts: Poignant, heartbreaking, and enthralling!

Rating: 10/10

Publication Date: September 3, 2019

 

 

Title: Your Truth or Mine?

Authors: Trisha Sakhlecha

Immediate Thoughts: Gripping, cunning, and pacey!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: September 3, 2019

 

 

Title: The Reckless Oath We Made

Author: Bryn Greenwood

Immediate Thoughts: Heart-tugging, unconventional, and gritty!

Rating: 8.5/10

Publication Date: August 20, 2019

 

 

Title: Hello I Want To Die Please Fix Me

Author: Anna Mehler Paperny

Immediate Thoughts: Informative, honest, and perceptive!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: August 6, 2019

 

 

What I’m Currently Reading:

 

The New York Times bestselling author of Beautiful Exilesconjures her best novel yet, a pre-World War II-era story with the emotional resonance of Orphan Train and All the Light We Cannot See, centering on the Kindertransports that carried thousands of children out of Nazi-occupied Europe—and one brave woman who helped them escape to safety.

In 1936, the Nazi are little more than loud, brutish bores to fifteen-year old Stephan Neuman, the son of a wealthy and influential Jewish family and budding playwright whose playground extends from Vienna’s streets to its intricate underground tunnels. Stephan’s best friend and companion is the brilliant Žofie-Helene, a Christian girl whose mother edits a progressive, anti-Nazi newspaper. But the two adolescents’ carefree innocence is shattered when the Nazis’ take control.

There is hope in the darkness, though. Truus Wijsmuller, a member of the Dutch resistance, risks her life smuggling Jewish children out of Nazi Germany to the nations that will take them. It is a mission that becomes even more dangerous after the Anschluss—Hitler’s annexation of Austria—as, across Europe, countries close their borders to the growing number of refugees desperate to escape.

Tante Truus, as she is known, is determined to save as many children as she can. After Britain passes a measure to take in at-risk child refugees from the German Reich, she dares to approach Adolf Eichmann, the man who would later help devise the “Final Solution to the Jewish Question,” in a race against time to bring children like Stephan, his young brother Walter, and Žofie-Helene on a perilous journey to an uncertain future abroad.

 

What I’m Reading Next:

 

In Alaska, it’s always a white Christmas—but the sparks flying between two reunited friends could turn it red-hot…

If there’s one gift Erika Sheraton does not want for Christmas, it’s a vacation. Ordered to take time off, the workaholic surgeon reluctantly trades in her scrubs for a ski suit and heads to Wild River, Alaska. Her friend Cassie owns a tour company that offers adventures to fit every visitor. But nothing compares to the adrenaline rush Erika feels on being reunited with Cassie’s brother, Reed Reynolds.

Gone is the buttoned-up girl Reed remembers. His sister’s best friend has blossomed into a strong, skilled, confident woman. She’s exactly what his search-and-rescue team needs—and everything he didn’t know he craved. The gulf between his life in Wild River and her big-city career is wide. But it’s no match for a desire powerful enough to melt two stubborn hearts…

 

Have you read any of my upcoming reads? What do you have coming up?

#BookBlitz #Giveaway
Love Repaired by Deana Birch
@DeanaBirch @XpressoReads

#BookBlitz #Giveaway Love Repaired by Deana Birch @DeanaBirch @XpressoReads

#BookBlitz #Giveaway Love Repaired by Deana Birch @DeanaBirch @XpressoReadsTitle: Love Repaired

Author: Deana Birch

Published by: Totally Bound Publishing on July 30, 2019

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 305

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Attorney Amee sets aside her own needs to juggle the broken pieces of her life and family until mechanic Ben repairs her heart. 

Divorce attorney Amee Benton—who has an ex of her own—is pretty sure she’s a #MomFail. Showing up late on a Friday night to retrieve her car from the shop and finding the pink frosted cupcakes she forgot to leave at her daughter’s ballet camp confirms it.

When mechanic, Ben Mathis, confesses to stealing one of the confections and asks who is taking care of Amee, she knows he’s a unicorn—a magical, beautiful beast who surely only exists in fantasies. And she tells him just that. With an f bomb for good measure.

Amee has three things Ben finds irresistible in a woman—brains, a family, and a serious potty mouth. At a chance run-in at Ben’s own personal hell, AKA the mall, he summons the courage to ask her out. Though Amee is leery of dating a younger man, and Ben is more than aware of their social gap, the two take a chance.

But Amee’s life isn’t like his. And when her ex returns and the doubting divorcée blunders, all of Ben’s insecurities are piqued anew. Now, Amee must prove to Ben his worth is much more than stand-in dad and rebound boyfriend or she’ll watch magic gallop off into the forest forever.

 

Goodreads/Amazon/B&N/Google

 

EXCERPT:

Amee:

Duggan’s was a not-too-hip, not-too-chic coffee shop downtown. It had its own parking lot and outdoor seating with canvas umbrellas for overly sunny days.

Ben—I didn’t know his last name—was sitting at a table for two toward the edge of the terrace. His long-sleeved army green Henley was pushed up to the elbows and his casual sprawled posture opposed the nerves brewing in my belly. He stood when he saw me, those damn dimples pressing into his cheeks with his smile.

Time to face the unicorn.

He side-stepped around the table and pulled out the wicker chair for me. The earthy scent from Friday night returned, this time without the motor oil.

“Hey.”

The grittiness of his voice made me swallow hard, and I sat in the chair. He reached up to adjust the angle of the umbrella to protect us from the sun. What promised to be the perfectly formed V of his lower abdomen peeked out from between a black elastic waistband under his jeans and the green shirt.

Unicorn cupcake eating man candy. Shit. I was in over my head. He was wayout of my league. My workouts consisted of me taking the stairs and vacuuming with headphones on. I hadn’t even been on a date since Pete and I had divorced. I shouldn’t have been allowed to play ball.

New planExcuse my behavior from Friday night, tell him I was not ready for any kind of relationship, go home and take a long, long shower thinking about his stomach.

“Sorry I’m late,” I said as he took his seat.

“I assumed you would be.” He scooted in, and before he could say anything else, the waiter came over. I ordered a fluffy complicated sugary mess of caffeine and Ben asked for just a water.

“You don’t drink coffee?”

“Nope.” He crossed his arms. “So, let’s hear it, Amee Benton.”

“Hear what?” There was no way in hell I would tell him why I’d called him a unicorn. A fucking unicorn.

“Your list.” His blue gaze challenged me from the opposite side of the table, then he blinked.

“What list? I don’t have a list.”

“Yes, you do. You have a list of why you’re not going to give me your phone number and agree to see me again.”

I sank a little into my chair before puffing out my chest, mulling over my next move.

“Maybe you should tell me your list.” Every muscle on my cheeks wanted to smile but years of questioning witnesses had polished my game face. I shaped parallel lines with my forearms on the black wire tabletop.

“Which one do you want me to tell you about?” he asked with a casual grin.

Stupid dimples. His dimples were dumb. Dumb like puppies.

“How many are there?” I raised my eyebrows.

“Many. Many. So many lists…” Leaning in, he licked his lips. He lightly traced a semi-circle on the top of my hand. “Grocery lists, home repairs, back to school…”

The breath from the base of my lungs rose up my chest and escaped slowly through the ‘O’ I’d formed with my mouth. I hadn’t been touched like that in ages and mundane tasks had never sounded better. Christ. I was practically panting.

His recoil startled me and he cleared his throat. The waiter set down our drinks, breaking the beautiful tension.

Creamy froth parted as I blew into the mug before taking a cautious sip. Without the haze of his touch, I regrouped. I placed my coffee on the table and he drank from his water bottle.

“Why?” I asked.

“Why what?” He screwed the cap on and set the bottle on the table.

I’d studied body language. I knew liars and I knew nervousness. His open legs and arms were neither. He was confident, honest. Real.

“Why me?”

A small airy chuckle accompanied a shake of his head and his blond hair brushed against his shoulders.

“Why not you, Amee Benton?”

Questioning soon-to-be-ex-spouses was much more satisfying. They weren’t allowed to answer questions with questions.

“What’s your last name?” I squinted.

“Mathis. And because I like you.”

I sipped my coffee.

He propped his elbows on his knees and searched my eyes. “And you’re kinda beautiful. Beauty and a dirty mouth are a weakness of mine.”

“Like cupcakes?” I fought the smile, but when his dimples appeared, I lost the battle.

“Just like cupcakes.” He shifted in his seat and pulled his phone from his back pocket. Quick tapping from his thumbs hit the screen before he slid it to me.

“May I please have your phone number?”

Yes. He could. Shit.

I picked up the phone. Under the heading New Contact, there was one word. Cupcake. I giggled, like a school girl in a candy shop. Pitiful. I typed in my number, hit new message and sent myself a text.

Satisfied, I grinned and handed the phone back to him. Instead of reviewing my handiwork, he set it face-down on the table.

“You’re not going to check? Make sure it’s the real number?”

“Nope.” He popped the ‘p’.

My toes twitched in my flats. The remainder of my coffee and foam clung to the edges of my cup and trailed down to the empty bottom.

“Are you free Friday night?” Ben asked with a rasp.

Coffee had been one thing. Safe. The sun was shining. Friday night would be a date. Risky. Dark.

“What did you have in mind?” I asked. The man had other lists. Lists hidden in his dimples and heavenly touch.

“A movie. Popcorn.” He lifted a shoulder.

One small step for Ben Mathis and a giant leap for Amee Benton. Crap. A firetruck and its sirens raced by on Third Avenue and the intrusive sound gave me a minute to think. This is what I’d wanted when I’d divorced Pete, right? A chance for something deeper before I shriveled up and had as many cats as Shae had dolls.

But then Pete had gotten drunk and killed another human being. He’d pleaded guilty to a lesser charge and had been taken away to a correctional facility within months, locking away my bright future behind bars with him. Instead of free weekends to build a new life, I had one hundred percent parenting duties twenty-four-seven, not to mention my career.

But Ben’s touch had answered a faded call—a call to be selfish, a call to be human.

“Can I meet you there? I’m not sure the girls are ready for their mom to be on a date.”

“I’ll text you.” He flipped over the check and dug into his front pocket.

With the money and check secured under my used coffee cup, Ben walked me to my car. When we arrived at the driver’s side door, I turned around to face him. He pushed his arm into the window and crowded my space.

“I gotta admit that I’m a little disappointed.” He was close. So close. And the hair on the back of my neck stiffened with the scratch in his voice.

I could have kissed him. I could have absolutely kissed him. Right there. Broad daylight. Sunday morning. Did. Not. Care.

I summoned any courage I had and asked, “Why’s that?”

Soft stubble caressed my cheek as he leaned into my ear. His warm breath brushed my neck as he whispered with his ridiculous rasp, “I was looking forward to your dirty mouth.”

My expression must have been his desired response, because when he stepped back and freed the heat between us, his grin stretched from ear to ear.

“See ya Friday, Cupcake.”

He swaggered away and climbed into a beat-up truck.

Revised planShower and a lonely orgasm.

 

About Deana Birch

Contemporary romance and erotica writer Deana Birch was named after her father's first love, who just so happened not to be her mother. Born and raised in the Midwest, she made stops in Los Angeles and New York before settling in Europe where she lives with her own blue-eyed Happily Ever After. Her days are spent teaching yoga, playing tennis, ruining her children's French homework, cleaning up dog vomit, writing her next book, or reading someone else's.

 

GIVEAWAY!

$25 Amazon gift card + all of Deana Birch’s books in ebook

$15 Amazon gift card + an eBook copy of Love Repaired

eBook copy of Love Repaired

(Blitz-wide, International)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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#BookReview
Life and Other Inconveniences
by Kristan Higgins @Kristan_Higgins
@BerkleyPub @PenguinRandomCA

#BookReview Life and Other Inconveniences by Kristan Higgins @Kristan_Higgins @BerkleyPub @PenguinRandomCATitle: Life and Other Inconveniences

Author: Kristan Higgins

Published by: Berkley Books on August 6, 2019

Genres: Women's Fiction

Pages: 448

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Penguin Random House Canada

Book Rating: 10/10

 

 

Synopsis:

From the New York Times bestselling author of Good Luck with That comes a new novel about a blue-blood grandmother and her black-sheep granddaughter who discover they are truly two sides of the same coin.

Emma London never thought she had anything in common with her grandmother Genevieve London. The regal old woman came from wealthy and bluest-blood New England stock, but that didn’t protect her from life’s cruelest blows: the disappearance of Genevieve’s young son, followed by the premature death of her husband. But Genevieve rose from those ashes of grief and built a fashion empire that was respected the world over, even when it meant neglecting her other son.

When Emma’s own mother died, her father abandoned her on his mother’s doorstep. Genevieve took Emma in and reluctantly raised her–until Emma got pregnant her senior year of high school. Genevieve kicked her out with nothing but the clothes on her back…but Emma took with her the most important London possession: the strength not just to survive but to thrive. And indeed, Emma has built a wonderful life for herself and her teenage daughter, Riley.

So what is Emma to do when Genevieve does the one thing Emma never expected of her and, after not speaking to her for nearly two decades, calls and asks for help?


Review:

Graceful, nuanced, and moving!

Life and Other Inconveniences is a beautifully written, affecting story that immerses you into the lives of the London family, especially three strong, determined women, and all the secrets, wounds, smiles, tears, strength, and compassion that surround them.

The prose is effortless and expressive. The characters are authentic, angry, lovable, and stubborn. And the story is an exceptionally touching tale about life, loss, love, grief, forgiveness, familial drama, friendship, courage, hope, and the unbreakable ties that bind us as family.

Overall, Life and Other Inconveniences is another absorbingly insightful, skillfully plotted, multi-generational, family saga by Higgins that reminds us that life is complicated, messy, challenging, short, heartbreaking, as well as all those other wonderful things, lovely times, and special moments that happen in-between.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                                             

 

 

Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Kristan Higgins

Kristan Higgins is the New York Times, USA TODAY, Wall Street Journal and Publishers Weekly bestselling author of 18 novels, which have been translated into more than two dozen languages and sold millions of copies worldwide. Her books have received dozens of awards and accolades, including starred reviews from Kirkus, The New York Journal of Books, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and Booklist. Her books regularly appear on the lists for best novels of the year. Kristan is also a cohost of the Crappy Friends podcast, which discusses the often complex dynamics of female friendships, with her friend and fellow writer, Joss Dey.

The proud descendant of a butcher and a laundress, Kristan lives in Connecticut with her heroic firefighter husband. They own several badly behaved pets and are often visited by their entertaining and long-lashed children.

Photograph by Kristan Higgins.

I Can’t Wait For . . . #CWW #WOW
(Can’t-Wait/Waiting on Wednesday)
Missing Person by Sarah Lotz
@mulhollandbooks @HBGCanada

 

Can’t-Wait Wednesday hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings is a weekly
post to spotlight books we’re excited about that we have yet to read.

 

This week the book I’m waiting on is …

 

 

From acclaimed horror writer Sarah Lotz, hailed by Stephen King as “vastly entertaining,” a new novel about a group of amateur detectives infiltrated by the sadistic killer whose case they’re investigating.

Reclusive Irish bookseller Shaun Ryan has always believed that his older brother, Teddy, died in a car accident. It’s only on his mother’s deathbed that he learns the truth: Teddy, who was gay, fled the Catholic, deeply conservative County Wicklow for New York decades earlier. Shaun finds no sign of him in New York or anywhere else–until he comes across the unsolved murder of a John Doe whose description matches Teddy’s.

Desperate for information, Shaun tracks down Chris Guzman, a woman who runs a website dedicated to matching missing persons cases with unidentified bodies. Through Chris’s site, a group of online cold case fanatics connect Teddy with the notorious “Boy in the Dress” murder, believed to be one of many committed by a serial killer targeting gay men.

But who are these cold case fanatics, and how do they know so much about a case that left the police and the FBI stumped? With investigators, amateurs, and one sadistic killer on a collision course, Missing Person is Sarah Lotz at her most thrilling and terrifying.

 

What do you think? It sounds so good, doesn’t it! 

 

Have you had a chance to read Missing Person or any other books by Sarah Lotz?

 

Will it be added to your TBR shelf?

 

#BookReview
Say You Still Love Me by K.A. Tucker
@kathleenatucker @AtriaBooks @SimonSchusterCA

#BookReview Say You Still Love Me by K.A. Tucker @kathleenatucker @AtriaBooks @SimonSchusterCATitle: Say You Still Love Me

Author: K.A. Tucker

Published by: Atria Books on August 6, 2019

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 384

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Simon & Schuster Canada

Book Rating: 10/10

 

 

Synopsis:

Life is a mixed bag for Piper Calloway.

On the one hand, she’s a twenty-nine-year-old VP at her dad’s multibillion-dollar real estate development firm, and living the high single life with her two best friends in a swanky downtown penthouse. On the other hand, she’s considered a pair of sexy legs in a male-dominated world and constantly has to prove her worth. Plus, she’s stuck seeing her narcissistic ex-fiancé—a fellow VP—on the other side of her glass office wall every day.

Things get exponentially more complicated for Piper when she runs into Kyle Miller—the handsome new security guard at Calloway Group Industries, and coincidentally the first love of her life.

The guy she hasn’t seen or heard from since they were summer camp counsellors together. The guy from the wrong side of the tracks. The guy who apparently doesn’t even remember her name.

Piper may be a high-powered businesswoman now, but she soon realizes that her schoolgirl crush is not only alive but stronger than ever, and crippling her concentration. What’s more, despite Kyle’s distant attitude, she’s convinced their reunion isn’t at all coincidental, and that his feelings for her still run deep. And she’s determined to make him admit to them, no matter the consequences.


Review:

Sincere, intoxicating, and heartwrenching!

Say You Still Love Me is an alluring, emotional tale that takes you on a journey into the life of the hardworking, intelligent Piper as she juggles a high-pressure career, a sexist coworker, an overbearing family with good intentions, the memories of one summer that changed her life forever, and the sudden reappearance of the boy who first stole her heart and then left her brokenhearted.

The writing is fluid and intense. The characters are secretive, scarred, ambitious, and intriguing. And the plot is a wonderful, contemporary mix of life, love, coming-of-age, family dynamics, humour, heartbreak, privilege, conflict, and surprises that starts in the present, takes you back 13-years in the past, and ultimately finishes when the past and the present collide.

Overall, Say You Still Love Me is another memorable, heartwarming, compelling tale by Tucker that once again has the perfect amount of mystery and romance to keep you engaged, enthralled, and invested from start to finish.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                                          

 

 

Thank you to Simon & Schuster Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About K.A. Tucker

K.A. Tucker writes captivating stories with an edge.

She is the USA Today bestselling author of 17 books, including the Causal Enchantment, Ten Tiny Breaths and Burying Water series, He Will Be My Ruin, Until It Fades, Keep Her Safe, and The Simple Wild.

Her books have been featured in national publications including USA Today, Globe & Mail, Suspense Magazine, First for Women, and Publisher's Weekly. She has been nominated for the Goodreads Choice Award for Best Romance 2013 for TEN TINY BREATHS and Best Romance 2018 for THE SIMPLE WILD. Her novels have been translated into 16 languages.

K.A. Tucker currently resides in a quaint town outside of Toronto with her family.

Photograph (c) Christa Hogan, Storeybook Studios.

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