Release Blitz & Giveaway: Out of Bounds by Lauren Blakely

forbidden_adsizeFrom NYT Bestselling author Lauren Blakely, comes a sexy new standalone sports romance…

OUT OF BOUNDS

Ready to be swept off your feet? Meet the witty, sexy, dirty-talking quarterback Drew in OUT OF BOUNDS! Grab your copy today!


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The first rule of football–don’t screw with a streak.

My career is finally looking up, and I’m leading a new pro team down the field every Sunday. No way will I mess with that. But when I meet the most stunning and captivating woman I’ve ever seen, I tell myself one night will have to be enough.

But it’s not. And now I can’t get her out of my mind. Even when I’m playing. Even when I need to focus. Even when I’m on the hottest streak of my life.

And it turns out, she’s not just some random woman I met. She works for the team. My team.

 

***

I only have one goal this season–do my part as the team’s lawyer to keep them out of trouble. Help rebuild their reputation on and off the field. There’s no room for error and certainly no room for a secret tryst with a player . . . even if he’s the quarterback.

Right?

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Excerpt

“Be on your best behavior, Drew,” he says, a teasing tone in his voice.

“I always am,” I reply, and the fact is, that’s true. Clean-cut is my nickname.

“And text if you’re done early.”

“If I’m done early, I’m having a date with my mattress.”

He groans. “You are the definition of no fun.”

I grin. “That’s me. That’s why Qwench wants me now. Because I know how to get a good night’s sleep and stay out of the line of fire.”

When I hang up, I step out of the car, hand the keys to the valet, and thank him. Then I head inside, where Stuart greets me in the room reserved for the event, claps me on the back, and introduces me to several people. A photographer snaps shots the whole time, and I play the role that’s hardly a role—the outgoing, non-trouble-making, peace-loving quarterback who doesn’t throw punches or raise fists, like others before me have.

Don’t smoke, don’t do drugs, don’t have unprotected sex, and I also don’t speed. Squeaky clean indeed. Not even a traffic ticket on the record, and certainly no knocked-up teenyboppers with mini Drews baking in their bellies.

Stuart introduces me to the red-haired, freckle-faced guy who heads up this charity. “And this is Drew Erickson. He’s our new starter. We’re thrilled to have him on the team, especially since he’s already active with many wonderful charitable endeavors,” Stuart says to the ginger-haired guy.

We exchange small talk for a few minutes, then Stuart drops a hand on my shoulder and tells me there’s someone else he wants me to meet. “I’d love to introduce you to a sharp-as-a-tack woman who makes sure I don’t fumble,” he says, then winks in case I didn’t realize he was making a joke.

I smile to let him know I got it—fumbling humor and all—then my smile turns into a ruler-straight line when I turn on my heels and see my surfer angel.

Holy shit. She’s hot as sin in a red skirt, white blouse, and black heels. She holds a drink. Her blond hair is twisted on her head. Damn. The smoking-hot look is almost enough to make me forget she blew me off. My dick, the traitorous bastard, has already come down with amnesia. The fucker wants her.

“This is Dani Paige. She’s an attorney for the team,” he says, and I attempt to school my expression as I come face-to-face with the woman who ditched me.

And all I want to do is toss her on my shoulder, stalk to the bathroom, slam the door, and ask her why the fuck she didn’t call. Then when she tells me it was because she was too busy getting off to thoughts of me, I’d kiss the hell out of her until she melted in my arms and begged me to take her. I’d happily oblige. Hoist her up, hook her legs around my hips, and fuck her against the wall until she comes harder than she ever has before.

Instead, I shake her free hand. “Pleasure to meet you.” Then I whisper, just for her. “Jaws.”

 

dont-like-football_availnowAbout the Author

Since self-publishing her debut romance novel CAUGHT UP IN US over three years ago, Lauren Blakely has sold more than 1.5 million books. She is known for her sexy contemporary romance style that’s full of heat, heart and humor. A devout fan of cake and canines, Lauren has plotted entire novels while walking her four-legged friends. She lives in California with her family. With twelve New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than seventy times. Her bestselling series include Sinful Nights, Seductive Nights, No Regrets, Caught Up in Love, and Fighting Fire as well as standalone hit romances like BIG ROCK, MISTER O, WELL HUNG, and THE SEXY ONE which were all instant New York Times Bestsellers. In January she’ll release FULL PACKAGE, a standalone romantic comedy. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter! laurenblakely.com/newsletter.

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✮✮✮ Celebrate the release of OUT OF BOUNDS! ✮✮✮

 

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Release Blast, Review & Giveaway: Consolation prize by Linda Kage

rb-consolationprize-lkage_finalConsolation Prize
Series: Forbidden Men #9
Genre: New Adult Romance
Author: Linda Kage
Release Date: November 17th, 2016add-to-goodreads-button-2

Muscular Male Torso with shirt

Muscular Male Torso with shirt

 

Don’t you just hate it when someone destroys all your carefully made plans?

I mean, I had goals: college to graduate in one semester, a future I was working hard to reach, and an image of myself I wanted the world to see. My life was stacked into these precisely placed blocks. But then Colton Gamble came along and knocked them all askew.

I hated how he messed everything up, how he could hog all my attention whenever he was around, how he made my pulse quicken–but only because he ticked me off…not because I was attracted to him. Oh! And I hated how he knew how attractive he was too, the shallow, full of himself, doesn’t take no for an answer, too-flirty, too cocky, extremely irritating jerk.

The boy had all the qualities that turned me off. Or so I thought.

One night he wasn’t quite the brainless, over-confident jerk I usually took him for.

One night, he took care of me when I was at my lowest. He opened up to me and made me open up to him.

Now I’m learning maybe he’s not what I first thought he was. And maybe I’M not what I first thought I was. Maybe it’s okay to rearrange a couple of my perfectly set blocks. Maybe, just maybe, I’ll stop worrying about what I’m afraid everyone else will think and finally reach for something I really want. It’s possible some of my plans need to be destroyed, and Colton Gamble is exactly the kind of mess I need in my life.

What do you think? Should I give him a try?

Desperately seeking your advice,
Julianna Radcliffe

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Excerpt

“Just for that, I’m going to make you cuddle.”

“Cuddle?” My eyes bulged as he crawled closer.

For some reason, cuddling struck more fear inside me than getting slapped or punched. I knew exactly how to respond to those—kick his ass out of my apartment. But with cuddling, I was lost.

I edged away from him, shaking my head, only to yelp out a surprised scream when he snaked out a hand and caught hold of my leg, stilling me.

“Yes, cuddle,” he said. “I like to cuddle.”

My muscles clenched and limbs went tense as he climbed up right into my personal space and wrapped himself around me like a second skin.

“I…I’m not big on cuddling,” I finally admitted, my body board-stiff against him.

“Really?” He sounded surprised by that. “Well, don’t worry, by the time I’m through with you, you’ll love it.

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Review-DGR4.5 stars

I’m used to coming in second place.”
“Not with me you don’t.”

There’s just something about this series for me that seems to hit the spot each and every single time. These characters have become like family to me. I’ve grown to love them and root for their HEA and I have to admit that no one tugged at my heart strings more than Brandt and Colton Gamble. Brandt got his HEA in Priceless and I’ve been eagerly anticipating Colton’s turn. The brothers are polar opposites. Brandt serious and Colton the goof with the easy smiles and plenty of charm. I knew it would take a special girl to bring this guy to his knees and Julianna was certainly his perfect match.

His grin always bore that smug, arrogant smirk, as if he could read every dirty thought in my head. I hated that too…almost as much as I hated him.

After their failed date that barely made it halfway, Julianna find herself at Brandt’s wedding, pining after what could have been. Sent in as the distraction, Colton is all too eager to hit on the beautiful woman that he’s been lusting after since he first laid eyes on her and who has been thwarting each and every single one of his flirty advances.

Every time you disagree with me, I just want to piss you off until you kiss me and rip at my clothes. And then I want to bury my cock so deep inside you I forget my own fucking name. And then I want to make you forget yours.”

I was afraid that Juli’s feelings for Brandt may put a permanent shadow over anything developing with her and Colton, but I should not have feared it at all. I absolutely loved these two together. Four years his senior, Juli is not exactly thrilled about her building lust towards the little Gamble. But his easy smiles and charm soon begin to win her over. Then there’s the quiet intensity and layers that he so easily keeps hidden beneath his playful personality that calls to her even more.

They have everything stacked against them. Colton will always be Brandt’s brother, he’s younger…and he’s white. I love reading interracial romances, but sadly it’s not a common find. Nor is it an easy thing to pull off without making it all about color. But I have to say that Linda Kage not only pulled it off, but she did so flawlessly.

While Juli may come off as a harass at first sight, there’s so much more to her. She’s such a multilayered character that I couldn’t help but like her right away. The more I found out about her, the more I understood why she acted the way she did. As for Colton, I knew I’d love him and I was not wrong. What I didn’t expect is to love him as much as I did. But he’s right up there with Ten for me. The same sort of ornery personality and easy humor, but beneath it all is a heart of gold.

I don’t know. Doesn’t that sound… wrong to you?”
“Oh, baby doll. Wrong’s just the way I like it.”

While the book may be titled Consolation Prize, their relationship was anything but. I absolutely adored the two of them together and watching them both slowly tear down the other’s walls. I loved watching them fall for each other against all odds.

Where the hell have you been all my life?”
“I’ve been looking for you, baby doll.”

When I’m in the mood for a poignant, emotional and sexy NA romance, this author has become my go-to. The Forbidden Men has been and continues to be one of my top favorite NA series. This book only served to remind me why I love it as much as I do. I simply can’t recommend it enough. Perfection. Pure perfection.


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About the Author

Linda Kage grew up on a dairy farm in the Midwest as the youngest of eight children. Now she lives in Kansas with her husband, daughter, and nine cuckoo clocks. Her life’s been blessed with lots of people to learn from and love. Writing’s always been a major part of her world, and she is so happy to finally share some of her stories with other romance lovers.

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Release Blitz & Giveaway: Resuscitate Me by Leddy Harper

resuscitate-me-release-day-blitz-bannerResuscitate Me
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Leddy Harper
Release Date: November 16, 2016add-to-goodreads-button-2

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Suffocating

I never knew I couldn’t breathe,

Until he forced air into my lungs

Gave me reason

Showed me life.
Carter Hastings was only supposed to be a fling,

A summer of fun, excitement, pleasure

And, it was…

Everything.

It’s hard to walk away,

To leave the one man,

Who resuscitates me.

But I did.

He didn’t reciprocate my feelings.

He didn’t love me.

Not now.

Not ever.

Coming November 16, 2016

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Available on Kindle Unlimited

resuscitate-me-jumpExcerpt

“Look at me,” he ordered again in that rough, no-nonsense tone.I blinked and focused on his eyes. His pupils had dilated so much they practically swallowed the green. “I can’t…” I whispered in what sounded to me like apologetic shame. “I can’t…”

He finally released the pressure against my chest, but I was unable to catch my breath. Instead of keeping me restrained between his hips and the mirror, he grabbed the back of my thigh and lowered me to the floor. Except, I wasn’t on the floor. I stood on an aerobic step that had to have been at least four inches considering the height advantage it provided me.

Again, he kept me immobilized and mute.

He wrapped one large, rough hand around my jaw. Four thick fingers extended along one side of it. A thumb dug into my cheek with my chin cupped in the web between them. He used his hold on me to tilt my head back until it fell against the mirror behind me.

My voice, my heartbeat, and my ability to breathe—gone.

Stolen.

Silenced by his hungry gaze.

About the Author

leddy-harperLeddy Harper had to use her imagination often as a child. She grew up the only girl in a house full of boys. At the age of fourteen, she decided to use that imagination and wrote her first book, and never stopped.

She often calls writing her therapy, using it as a way to deal with issues through the eyes of her characters.

She is now a mother of three girls, leaving her husband as the only man in a house full of females.

The decision to publish her first book was made as a way of showing her children to go after whatever it is they want to. Love what you do and do it well. Most importantly Leddy wanted to teach them what it means to overcome their fears.

 

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McNaught-E November! #Giveaway & ::Whitney My Love:: Excerpt

I am so excited to share with you that the fourteen Judith McNaught titles listed below are available for the first time in E-Book today, November 1st! If you previously read any of these amazing titles, revisiting them in E-Book is not “All for Naught,” as each E-Book will contain original, new content (a letter) from Judith McNaught.

Excerpts:

To celebrate this abundance of new material from Judith McNaught, we kick off McNaught-E November today with an excerpt for Whitney, My Love ($2.99 special price November 1st – December 4th, 2016). Please check back on McNaught-E Mondays (every Monday in November) to enjoy additional excerpts for the other thirteen E-Books.

 Giveaway

Want to win a promo code for EACH of these amazing 14 titles? For McNaught-E Cyber Monday (11/28) I will announce the winner of 14 promo codes, one promo code for each title. That’s right, one winner will get 14 promo codes for each of the books listed below! Enter to win today! 

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You can enter on all blogs on the tour listed below, but you can only win once.


 Judith McNaught Historical Romances:

Let New York Times bestselling author Judith McNaught who “is in a class by herself” (USA TODAY) sweep you off your feet and into another time with her sensual, passionate, and spellbinding historical romance classics, featuring her “unique magic” (RT Book Reviews)! 


SEQUELS SERIES


 Once and Always

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Victoria Seaton, a blithe and fiercely independent orphan, leaves her home in America to travel across the vast Atlantic to claim her long-lost inheritance: a labyrinthine English estate named Wakefield. There she encounters her distant cousin, the notorious, proud, and mysterious Lord Jason Fielding. Drawn to his magnetic charisma, Victoria can’t help but suspect that like her, he harbors a dark and painful past. Neither Victoria or Jason are able to resist one another’s charm but, in a moment of blinding anguish, Victoria discovers the shocking truth that lays at the heart of their love—a love she had dreamed would triumph.

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 Something Wonderful

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“Judith McNaught not only spins dreams but makes them come true” (RT Book Reviews) in this sensual and moving tale of a tempestuous marriage facing its ultimate test. Alexandra Lawrence, an innocent country girl, and Jordan Townsende, the rich and powerful Duke of Hawthorne, have always had a stormy relationship. But when she is swept into the endlessly fascinating world of London society, free-spirited Alexandra becomes ensnared in a tangled web of jealousy, revenge, and overwhelming passion. But behind her husband’s cold, haughty mask, there lives a tender, vital, sensual man…the man Alexandra married. Now, she will fight for his very life and the rapturous bond they alone can share.

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Almost Heaven

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Elizabeth Cameron, the Countess of Havenhurst, possesses a rare gentleness and fierce courage to match her exquisite beauty. But her reputation is shattered when she is discovered in the arms of Ian Thornton, a notorious gambler and social outcast. A dangerously handsome man of secret wealth and mysterious lineage, Ian’s interest in Elizabeth may not be all that it seems. His voyage to her heart is fraught with intrigue, scandal, and a venomous revenge.  As a twisting path of secrets takes them from London’s drawing rooms to the awe-inspiring Scottish Highlands, Elizabeth must learn the truth: is Ian merely a ruthless fortune hunter at heart? “Well-developed main characters with a compelling mutual attraction give strength and charm to this romance set in nineteenth-century Great Britain” (Publishers Weekly).

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WESTMORELAND DYNASTY SAGA


 Whitney, My Love

cover-whitneymylove$2.99 (Offer Valid November 1st – December 4th, 2016)

A saucy spitfire who has grown into a ravishing young woman, Whitney Stone returns from her triumphant time in Paris society to England. She plans on marrying her childhood sweetheart, only to discover she has been bargained away by her bankrupt father to the arrogant and alluring Clayton Westmoreland, the Duke of Claymore. Outraged, she defies her new lord. But even as his smoldering passion seduces her into a gathering storm of desire, Whitney cannot—will not—relinquish her dream of perfect love. Rich with emotion, brimming with laughter and tears, Whitney, My Love is “the ultimate love story, one you can dream about forever” (RT Book Reviews).

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Excerpt CHAPTER 1 EXCERPT!

Whitney, My Love
1As their elegant travelling chaise rocked and swayed along the rutted country road, Lady Anne Gilbert leaned her cheek against her husband’s shoulder and heaved a long, impatient sigh. “Another whole hour until we arrive, and already the suspense is positively gnawing at me. I keep wondering what Whitney will be like now that she’s grown up.”She lapsed into silence and gazed absently out the coach window at the lush, rolling English countryside covered with wild pink Foxglove and yellow Buttercups, trying to envision the niece she hadn’t seen in almost eleven years.“She’ll be pretty, just as her mother was. And she’ll have her mother’s smile, her gentleness, her sweet disposition . . .”Lord Edward Gilbert cast a skeptical glance at his wife. “Sweet disposition?” he echoed in amused disbelief. “That isn’t what her father said in his letter.”As a diplomat attached to the British Consulate in Paris, Lord Gilbert was a master of hints, evasions, innuendoes, and intrigues. But in his personal life, he preferred the refreshing alternative of blunt truth. “Allow me to refresh your memory,” he said, groping in his pockets and retrieving the letter from Whitney’s father. He perched his spectacles upon his nose, and ignoring his wife’s grimace, he began to read:

“ ‘Whitney’s manners are an outrage, her conduct is reprehensible. She is a willful hoyden who is the despair of everyone she knows and an embarrassment to me. I implore you to take her back to Paris with you, in the hope that you may have more success with the stubborn chit than I have had.’ ”

Edward chuckled. “Show me where it says she’s ‘sweet-tempered.’ ”

His wife shot him a peevish glance. “Martin Stone is a cold, unfeeling man who wouldn’t recognize gentleness and goodness if Whitney were made of nothing else! Only think of the way he shouted at her and sent her to her room right after my sister’s funeral.”

Edward recognized the mutinous set of his wife’s chin and put his arm around her shoulders in a gesture of conciliation. “I’m no fonder of the man than you are, but you must admit that, just having lost his young wife to an early grave, to have his daughter accuse him, in front of fifty people, of locking her mama in a box so she couldn’t escape had to be rather disconcerting.”

“But Whitney was scarcely five years old!” Anne protested heatedly.

“Agreed. But Martin was grieving. Besides, as I recall, it was not for that offense she was banished to her room. It was later, when everyone had gathered in the drawing room—when she stamped her foot and threatened to report us all to God if we didn’t release her mama at once.”

Anne smiled. “What spirit she had, Edward. I thought for a moment her little freckles were going to pop right off her nose. Admit it—she was marvelous, and you thought so too!”

“Well, yes,” Edward agreed sheepishly. “I rather thought she was.”

*  *  *

As the Gilbert chaise bore inexorably down on the Stone estate, a small knot of young people were waiting on the south lawn, impatiently looking toward the stable one hundred yards away. A petite blonde smoothed her pink ruffled skirts and sighed in a way that displayed a very fetching dimple. “Whatever do you suppose Whitney is planning to do?” she inquired of the handsome light-haired man beside her.

Glancing down into Elizabeth Ashton’s wide blue eyes, Paul Sevarin smiled a smile that Whitney would have forfeited both her feet to see focused on herself. “Try to be patient, Elizabeth,” he said.

“I’m sure none of us have the faintest idea what she is up to, Elizabeth,” Margaret Merryton said tartly. “But you can be perfectly certain it will be something foolish and outrageous.”

“Margaret, we’re all Whitney’s guests today,” Paul chided.

“I don’t know why you should defend her, Paul,” Margaret argued spitefully. “Whitney is creating a horrid scandal chasing after you, and you know it!”

“Margaret!” Paul snapped. “I said that was enough.” Drawing a long, irritated breath, Paul Sevarin frowned darkly at his gleaming boots. Whitney had been making a spectacle of herself chasing after him, and damned near everyone for fifteen miles was talking about it.

At first he had been mildly amused to find himself the object of a fifteen-year-old’s languishing looks and adoring smiles, but lately Whitney had begun pursuing him with the determination and tactical brilliance of a female Napoleon Bonaparte.

If he rode off the grounds of his estate, he could almost depend on meeting her en route to his destination. It was as if she had some lookout point from which she watched his every move, and Paul no longer found her childish infatuation with him either harmless or amusing.

Three weeks ago, she had followed him to a local inn. While he was pleasantly contemplating accepting the innkeeper’s daughter’s whispered invitation to meet her later in the hayloft, he’d glanced up and seen a familiar pair of bright green eyes peeping at him through the window. Slamming his tankard of ale on the table, he’d marched outside, grabbed Whitney by the elbow, and unceremoniously deposited her on her horse, tersely reminding her that her father would be searching for her if she wasn’t home by nightfall.

He’d stalked back inside and ordered another tankard, but when the innkeeper’s daughter brushed her breasts suggestively against his arm while refilling his ale and Paul had a sudden vision of himself lying entangled with her voluptuous naked body, a pair of green eyes peered in through yet another window. He’d tossed enough coins on the planked wooden table to mollify the startled girl’s wounded sensibilities and left—only to encounter Miss Stone again on his way home.

He was beginning to feel like a hunted man whose every move was under surveillance, and his temper was strained to the breaking point. And yet, Paul thought irritably, here he was standing in the April sun, trying for some obscure reason to protect Whitney from the criticism she richly deserved.

A pretty girl, several years younger than the others in the group, glanced at Paul. “I think I’ll go and see what’s keeping Whitney,” said Emily Williams. She hurried across the lawn and along the whitewashed fence adjoining the stable. Shoving open the big double doors, Emily looked down the wide gloomy corridor lined with stalls on both sides. “Where is Miss Whitney?” she asked the stableboy who was currying a sorrel gelding.

“In there, Miss.” Even in the muted light, Emily saw his face suffuse with color as he nodded toward a door adjacent to the tack room.

With a puzzled glance at the flushing stableboy, Emily tapped lightly on the designated door and stepped inside, then froze at the sight that greeted her: Whitney Allison Stone’s long legs were encased in coarse brown britches that clung startlingly to her slender hips and were held in place at her narrow waist with a length of rope. Above the riding britches she wore a thin chemise.

“You surely aren’t going out there dressed like that?” Emily gasped.

Whitney fired an amused glance over her shoulder at her scandalized friend. “Of course not. I’m going to wear a shirt, too.”

“B-but why?” Emily persisted desperately.

“Because I don’t think it would be very proper to appear in my chemise, silly,” Whitney cheerfully replied, snatching the stableboy’s clean shirt off a peg and plunging her arms into the sleeves.

“P-proper? Proper?” Emily sputtered. “It’s completely improper for you to be wearing men’s britches, and you know it!”

“True. But I can’t very well ride that horse without a saddle and risk having my skirts blow up around my neck, now can I?” Whitney breezily argued while she twisted her long unruly hair into a knot and pinned it at her nape.

“Ride without a saddle? You can’t mean you’re going to ride astride—your father will disown you if you do that again.”

“I am not going to ride astride. Although,” Whitney giggled, “I can’t understand why men are allowed to straddle a horse, while we—who are supposed to be the weaker sex—must hang off the side, praying for our lives.”

Emily refused to be diverted. “Then what are you going to do?”

“I never realized what an inquisitive young lady you are, Miss Williams,” Whitney teased. “But to answer your question, I am going to ride standing on the horse’s back. I saw it done at the fair, and I’ve been practicing ever since. Then, when Paul sees how well I do, he’ll—”

“He’ll think you have lost your mind, Whitney Stone! He’ll think that you haven’t a grain of sense or propriety, and that you’re only trying something else to gain his attention.” Seeing the stubborn set of her friend’s chin, Emily switched her tactics. “Whitney, please—think of your father. What will he say if he finds out?”

Whitney hesitated, feeling the force of her father’s unwaveringly cold stare as if it were this minute focused upon her. She drew a long breath, then expelled it slowly as she glanced out the small window at the group waiting on the lawn. Wearily, she said, “Father will say that, as usual, I have disappointed him, that I am a disgrace to him and to my mother’s memory, that he is happy she didn’t live to see what I have become. Then he will spend half an hour telling me what a perfect lady Elizabeth Ashton is, and that I ought to be like her.”

“Well, if you really wanted to impress Paul, you could try . . .”

Whitney clenched her hands in frustration. “I have tried to be like Elizabeth. I wear those disgusting ruffled dresses that make me feel like a pastel mountain, I’ve practiced going for hours without saying a word, and I’ve fluttered my eyelashes until my eyelids go limp.”

Emily bit her lip to hide her smile at Whitney’s unflattering description of Elizabeth Ashton’s demure mannerisms, then she sighed. “I’ll go and tell the others that you’ll be right out.”

Gasps of outrage and derisive sniggers greeted Whitney’s appearance on the lawn when she led the horse toward the spectators. “She’ll fall off,” one of the girls predicted, “if God doesn’t strike her dead first for wearing those britches.”

Ignoring the impulse to snap out a biting retort, Whitney raised her head in a gesture of haughty disdain, then stole a look at Paul. His handsome face was taut with disapproval as his gaze moved from her bare feet, up her trousered legs, to her face. Inwardly, Whitney faltered at his obvious displeasure, but she swung resolutely onto the back of the waiting horse.

The gelding moved into its practiced canter, and Whitney worked herself upward, first crouching with arms outstretched for balance, then slowly easing herself into a standing position. Around and around they went and, although Whitney was in constant terror of falling off and looking like a fool, she managed to appear competent and graceful.

As she completed the fourth circle, she let her eyes slant to the faces passing on her left, registering their looks of shock and derision, while she searched for the only face that mattered. Paul was partially in the tree’s shadow, and Elizabeth Ashton was clinging to his arm, but as Whitney passed, she saw the slow, reluctant smile tugging at the corner of his mouth, and triumph unfurled like a banner in her heart. By the time she came around again, Paul was grinning broadly at her. Whitney’s spirits soared, and suddenly all the weeks of practice, the sore muscles and bruises, seemed worthwhile.

*  *  *

At the window of the second floor drawing room overlooking the south lawn, Martin Stone stared down at his performing daughter. Behind him, the butler announced that Lord and Lady Gilbert had arrived. Too enraged at his daughter to speak, Martin greeted his sister-in-law and her husband with a clenched jaw and curt nod.

“How—how nice to see you again after so many years, Martin,” Lady Anne lied graciously. When he remained icily silent, she said, “Where is Whitney? We’re so anxious to see her.”

Martin finally recovered his voice. “See her?” he snapped savagely. “Madam, you have only to look out this window.”

Bewildered, Anne did as he said. Below on the lawn there stood a group of young people watching a slender boy balancing beautifully on a cantering horse. “What a clever young man,” she said, smiling.

Her simple remark seemed to drive Martin Stone from frozen rage to frenzied action as he swung on his heel and marched toward the door. “If you wish to meet your niece, come with me. Or, I can spare you the humiliation, and bring her here to you.”

With an exasperated look at Martin’s back, Anne tucked her hand in her husband’s arm and together they followed Martin downstairs and outside.

As they approached the group of young people, Anne heard murmurings and laughter, and she was vaguely aware that there was something malicious in the tone, but she was too busy scanning the young ladies’ faces, looking for Whitney, to pay much heed to the fleeting impression. She mentally discarded two blondes and a redhead, quizzically studied a petite, blue-eyed brunette, then glanced helplessly at the young man beside her. “Pardon me, I am Lady Gilbert, Whitney’s aunt. Could you tell me where she is?”

Paul Sevarin grinned at her, half in sympathy and half in amusement. “Your niece is on the horse, Lady Gilbert,” he said.

“On the—” Lord Gilbert choked.

From her delicate perch atop the horse, Whitney’s eyes followed her father’s progress as he bore down on her with long, rapid strides. “Please don’t make a scene, Father,” she implored when he was within earshot.

I make a scene?” he roared furiously. Snatching the halter, he brought the cantering horse around so sharply that he jerked it from beneath her. Whitney hit the ground on her feet, lost her balance, and ended up half-sprawling. As she scampered up, her father caught her arm in a ruthless grip and hauled her over toward the spectators. “This—this thing,” he said, thrusting her forward toward her aunt and uncle, “I am mortified to tell you is your niece.”

Whitney heard the smattering of giggles as the group quickly disbanded, and she felt her face grow hot with shame. “How do you do, Aunt Gilbert? Uncle Gilbert?” With one eye on Paul’s broad-shouldered, retreating form, Whitney reached mechanically for her nonexistent skirt, realized it was missing, and executed a comical curtsy without it. She saw the frown on her aunt’s face and put her chin up defensively. “You may be sure that for the week you are here, I shall endeavor not to make a freak of myself again, Aunt.”

“For the week that we are here?” her aunt gasped, but Whitney was preoccupied watching Paul help Elizabeth into his curricle and didn’t notice the surprise in her aunt’s voice.

“Good-bye, Paul,” she called, waving madly. He turned and raised his arm in silent farewell.

Laughter drifted back as the curricles bowled down the drive, carrying their occupants off to a picnic or some other gay and wonderful activity, to which Whitney was never invited because she was too young.

Following Whitney toward the house, Anne was a mass of conflicting emotions. She was embarrassed for Whitney, furious with Martin Stone for humiliating the girl in front of the other young people, somewhat dazed by the sight of her own niece cavorting on the back of a horse, wearing men’s britches . . . and utterly astonished to discover that Whitney, whose mother had been only passably pretty, showed promise of becoming a genuine beauty.

She was too thin right now, but even in disgrace Whitney’s shoulders were straight, her walk naturally graceful and faintly provocative. Anne smiled to herself at the gently rounded hips displayed to almost immoral advantage by the coarse brown trousers, the slender waist that would require no subterfuge to make it appear smaller, eyes that seemed to change from sea-green to deep jade beneath their fringe of long, sooty lashes. And that hair—piles and piles of rich mahogany brown! All it needed was a good trimming and brushing until it shone; Anne’s fingers positively itched to go to work on it. Mentally she was already styling it in ways to highlight Whitney’s striking eyes and high cheekbones. Off her face, Anne decided, piled at the crown with tendrils at the ears, or pulled straight back off the forehead to fall in gentle waves down her back.

As soon as they entered the house, Whitney mumbled an excuse and fled to her room where she flopped dejectedly into a chair and morosely contemplated the humiliating scene Paul had just witnessed, with her father jerking her ignominiously off her horse and then shouting at her. No doubt her aunt and uncle were as horrified and revolted by her behavior as her father had been, and her cheeks burned with shame just thinking of how they must despise her already.

“Whitney?” Emily whispered, creeping into the bedroom and cautiously closing the door behind her. “I came up the back way. Is your father angry?”

“Cross as crabs,” Whitney confirmed, staring down at her trousered legs. “I suppose I ruined everything today, didn’t I? Everyone was laughing at me, and Paul heard them. Now that Elizabeth is seventeen, he’s bound to offer for her before he ever has a chance to realize that he loves me.

“You?” Emily repeated dazedly. “Whitney Stone, Paul avoids you like the plague, and well you know it! And who could blame him, after the mishaps you’ve treated him to in the last year?”

“There haven’t been so many as all that,” Whitney protested, but she squirmed in her chair.

“No? What about that trick you played on him on All Soul’s—darting out in front of his carriage, shrieking like a banshee, and pretending to be a ghost, terrifying his horses.”

Whitney flushed. “He wasn’t so very angry. And it isn’t as if the carriage was destroyed. It only broke a shaft when it overturned.”

“And Paul’s leg,” Emily pointed out.

“But that mended perfectly,” Whitney persisted, her mind already leaping from past debacles to future possibilities. She surged to her feet and began to pace slowly back and forth. “There has to be a way—but short of abducting him, I—” A mischievous smile lit up her dust-streaked face as she swung around so quickly that Emily pressed back into her chair. “Emily, one thing is infinitely clear: Paul does not yet know that he cares for me. Correct?”

“He doesn’t care a snap for you is more like it,” Emily replied warily.

“Therefore, it would be safe to say that he is unlikely to offer for me without some sort of added incentive. Correct?”

“You couldn’t make him offer for you at the point of a gun, and you know it. Besides, you aren’t old enough to be betrothed, even if—”

“Under what circumstances,” Whitney interrupted triumphantly, “is a gentleman obliged to offer for a lady?”

“I can’t think of any. Except of course, if he has compromised her—absolutely not! Whitney, whatever you’re planning now, I won’t help.”

Sighing, Whitney flopped back into her chair, stretching her legs out in front of her. An irreverent giggle escaped her as she considered the sheer audacity of her last idea. “If only I could have pulled it off . . . you know, loosened the wheel on Paul’s carriage so that it would fall off later, and then asked him to drive me somewhere. Then, by the time we walked back, or help arrived, it would be late at night, and he would have to offer for me.” Oblivious to Emily’s scandalized expression, Whitney continued, “Just think what a wonderful turnabout that would have been on a tired old theme: Young Lady abducts Gentleman and ruins hisreputation so that she is forced to marry him to set things aright! What a novel that could have made,” she added, rather impressed with her own ingenuity.

“I’m leaving,” Emily said. She marched to the door, then she hesitated and turned back to Whitney. “Your aunt and uncle saw everything. What are you going to say to them about those trousers and the horse?”

Whitney’s face clouded. “I’m not going to say anything, it wouldn’t help—but for the rest of the time they are here, I’m going to be the most demure, refined, delicate female you’ve ever seen.” She saw Emily’s dubious look and added, “Also I intend to stay out of sight except at mealtimes. I think I’ll be able to act like Elizabeth for three hours a day.”

*  *  *

Whitney kept her promise. At dinner that night, after her uncle’s hair-raising tale of their life in Beirut where he was attached to the British Consulate, she murmured only, “How very informative, Uncle,” even though she was positively burning to ply him with questions. At the end of her aunt’s description of Paris and the thrill of its gay social life, Whitney murmured, “How very informative, Aunt.” The moment the meal was finished, she excused herself and vanished.

After three days, Whitney’s efforts to be either demure or absent had, in fact, been so successful that Anne was beginning to wonder whether she had only imagined the spark of fire she’d glimpsed the day of their arrival, or if the girl had some aversion to Edward and herself.

On the fourth day, when Whitney breakfasted before the rest of the household was up, and then vanished, Anne set out to discover the truth. She searched the house, but Whitney was not indoors. She was not in the garden, nor had she taken a horse from the stable, Anne was informed by a groom. Squinting into the sunlight, Anne looked around her, trying to imagine where a fifteen-year-old would go to spend all day.

Off on the crest of a hill overlooking the estate, she spied a patch of bright yellow. “There you are!” she breathed, opening her parasol and striking out across the lawn.

Whitney didn’t see her aunt coming until it was too late to escape. Wishing she had found a better place to hide, she tried to think of some innocuous subject on which she could converse without appearing ignorant. Clothes? Personally, she knew nothing of fashions and cared even less; she looked hopeless no matter what she wore. After all, what could clothes do to improve the looks of a female who had cat’s eyes, mud-colored hair, and freckles on the bridge of her nose? Besides that, she was too tall, too thin, and if the good Lord intended for her ever to have a bosom, it was very late in making its appearance.

Weak-kneed, her chest heaving with each labored breath, Anne topped the steep rise and collapsed unceremoniously onto the blanket beside Whitney. “I-I thought I’d take . . . a nice stroll,” Anne lied. When she caught her breath, she noticed the leather-bound book lying face down on the blanket and, seizing on books as a topic of conversation, she said, “Is that a romantic novel?”

“No, Aunt,” Whitney demurely uttered, carefully placing her hand over the title of the book to conceal it from her aunt’s eyes.

“I’m told most young ladies adore romantic novels,” Anne tried again.

“Yes, Aunt,” Whitney agreed politely.

“I read one once but I didn’t like it,” Anne remarked, her mind groping for some other topic that might draw Whitney into conversation. “I cannot abide a heroine who is too perfect, nor one who is forever swooning.”

Whitney was so astonished to discover that she wasn’t the only female in all of England who didn’t devour the insipid things, that she instantly forgot her resolution to speak only in monosyllables. “And when the heroines aren’t swooning,” she added, her entire face lighting up with laughter, “they are lying about with hartshorn bottles up their nostrils, moping and pining away for some faint-hearted gentleman who hasn’t the gumption to offer for them, or else has already offered for some other, unworthy female. I could never just lie there doing nothing, knowing the man I loved was falling in love with a horrid person.” Whitney darted a glance at her aunt to see if she was shocked, but her aunt was regarding her with an unexplainable smile lurking at the corners of her eyes. “Aunt Anne, could you actually care for a man who dropped to his knees and said, ‘Oh, Clarabel, your lips are the petals of a red rose and your eyes are two stars from the heavens’?” With a derisive snort, Whitney finished, “That is where I would have leapt for the hartshorn!”

“And so would I,” Anne said, laughing. “What do you read then, if not atrocious romantic novels?” She pried the book from beneath Whitney’s flattened hand and stared at the gold-embossed title. “The Iliad?” she asked in astonished disbelief. The breeze ruffled the pages, and Anne’s amazed gaze ricocheted from the print to Whitney’s tense face. “But this is in Greek! Surely you don’t read Greek?”

Whitney nodded, her face flushed with mortification. Now her aunt would think her a bluestocking—another black mark against her. “Also Latin, Italian, French, and even some German,” she confessed.

“Good God,” Anne breathed. “How did you ever learn all that?”

“Despite what Father thinks, Aunt Anne, I am only foolish, not stupid, and I plagued him to death until he allowed me tutors in languages and history.” Whitney fell silent, remembering how she’d once believed that if

she applied herself to her studies, if she could become more like a son, her father might love her.

“You sound ashamed of your accomplishments, when you should be proud.”

Whitney gazed out at her home, nestled in the valley below. “I’m sure you know everyone thinks it’s a waste of time to educate a female in these things. And anyway, I haven’t a feminine accomplishment to my name. I can’t sew a stitch that doesn’t look as if it were done blindfolded, and when I sing, the dogs down at the stable begin to howl. Mr. Twittsworthy, our local music instructor, told my father that my playing of the pianoforte gives him hives. I can’t do a thing that girls ought to do, and what’s more, I particularly detest doing them.”

Whitney knew her aunt would now take her in complete dislike, just as everyone else always did, but it was better this way because at least she could stop dreading the inevitable. She looked at Lady Anne, her green eyes wide and vulnerable. “I’m certain Papa has told you all about me. I’m a terrible disappointment to him. He wants me to be dainty and demure and quiet, like Elizabeth Ashton. I try to be, but I can’t seem to do it.”

Anne’s heart melted for the lovely, spirited, bewildered child her sister had borne. Laying her hand against Whitney’s cheek, she said tenderly, “Your father wants a daughter who is like a cameo—delicate, pale, and easily shaped. Instead, he has a daughter who is a diamond, full of sparkle and life, and he doesn’t know what to do with her. Instead of appreciating the value and rarity of his jewel—instead of polishing her a bit and then letting her shine—he persists in trying to shape her into a common cameo.”

Whitney was more inclined to think of herself as a chunk of coal, but rather than disillusion her aunt, she kept silent. After her aunt left, Whitney picked up her book, but soon her mind wandered from the printed page to dreamy thoughts of Paul.

That night when she came down to the dining room, the atmosphere in the room was strangely charged, and no one noticed her sauntering toward the table. “When do you plan to tell her she’s coming back to France with us, Martin?” her uncle demanded angrily. “Or is it your intention to wait until the day we leave and then just toss the child into the coach with us?”

The world tilted crazily, and for one horrible moment, Whitney thought she was going to be sick. She stopped, trying to steady her shaking limbs, and swallowed back the aching lump in her throat. “Am I going somewhere, Father?” she asked, trying to sound calm and indifferent.

They all turned and stared, and her father’s face tightened into lines of impatience and annoyance. “To France,” he replied abruptly. “To live with your aunt and uncle, who are going to try to make a lady out of you.”

Carefully avoiding meeting anyone’s eyes, lest she break down then and there, Whitney slid into her chair at the table. “Have you informed my aunt and uncle of the risk they are taking?” she asked, concentrating all her strength on preventing her father from seeing what he had just done to her heart. She looked coldly at her aunt and uncle’s guilty, embarrassed faces. “Father may have neglected to mention you’re risking disgrace by welcoming me into your home. As he will tell you, I’ve a hideous disposition, I’m rag-mannered, and I haven’t a trace of polite conversation.”

Her aunt was watching her with naked pity, but her father’s expression was stony. “Oh Papa,” she whispered brokenly, “do you really despise me this much? Do you hate me so much that you have to send me out of your sight?” Her eyes swimming with unshed tears, Whitney stood up. “If you . . . will excuse me . . . I’m not very hungry this evening.”

“How could you!” Anne cried when she left, rising from her own chair and glaring furiously at Martin Stone. “You are the most heartless, unfeeling—it will be a pleasure to remove that child from your clutches. How she has survived this long is a testimony to her strength. I’m sure I could never have done so well.”

“You refine too much upon her words, Madam,” Martin said icily. “I assure you that what has her looking so distraught is not the prospect of being parted from me. I have merely put a premature end to her plans to continue making a fool of herself over Paul Sevarin.”


 A Kingdom of Dreams

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Abducted from her convent school, headstrong Scottish beauty Jennifer Merrick does not easily surrender to Royce Westmoreland, Duke of Claymore. Known as “The Wolf,” his very name strikes terror in the hearts of his enemies. But proud Jennifer will have nothing to do with the fierce English warrior who holds her captive, no matter what he threatens. Boldly she challenges his will—until the night he takes her in his powerful embrace, awakening in her an irresistible hunger. Suddenly Jennifer finds herself ensnared in a bewildering and seductive web of pride, passion, and overwhelming love. This beloved tale about two defiant hearts clashing in a furious battle of wills in the glorious age of chivalry “will stay in your heart forever and be a classic on your shelves” (RT Book Reviews, Top Pick).

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Until You

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In this unforgettable romantic adventure, a teacher of wealthy young ladies finds her life changed forever when she travels from the wilds of America to elegant London. Sheridan Bromleigh is hired to accompany one of her students, heiress Charise Lancaster, to England to meet her fiancé. But when her charge elopes with a stranger, Sheridan wonders how she will ever explain it to Charise’s intended, Lord Burleton. Standing on the pier, Stephen Westmoreland, the Earl of Langford, assumes the young woman coming toward him is Charise Lancaster and reluctantly informs her of his inadvertent role in a fatal accident involving Lord Burleton the night before. And just as the young woman is about to speak, she steps into the path of a cargo net loaded with crates. Sheridan awakens in Westmoreland’s mansion with no memory of who she is; the only hint of her past is the puzzling fact that everyone calls her Miss Lancaster. All she truly knows is that she is falling in love with a handsome English earl, and that the life unfolding before her seems full of wondrous possibilities.

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Miracles (in A Holiday of Love)

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Now available for the first time ever as an e-novella, New York Times bestselling author Judith McNaught’s short historical romanceMiracles—which ties up ends left open in the Westmoreland Dynasty Saga—is available for the first time ever as a standalone e-novella. In Regency London, world-weary lord Nicki du Ville receives an outrageous proposal from Julianna Skeffington, who is Sheridan Bromleigh’s charge from Until You.

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Judith McNaught Contemporary Historical Romances:

Discover the sensual and sweeping power of love in New York Times bestselling author Judith McNaught’s contemporary romances that will make “you laugh, cry, and fall in love again” (RT Book Reviews)!


STAND-ALONES


Tender Triumph

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On Friday, a sensuous stranger enters Katie’s life. By Sunday, her life is irrevocably changed forever.

Katie Connelly submerges her painful past in a promising career, an elegant apartment, and men she can keep at a distance. Yet something vital is missing from her life—until she meets proud, rugged Ramon Galverra. With his charm and his passionate nature, Ramon gives her a love she had never known. Still she is afraid to surrender her heart to this strong, willful, secretive man—a man from a different world, a man with a bold, uncertain future. Will Katie’s relationship with Ramon survive once the thrill of their simmering passion subsides?

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Double Standards

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In the exclusive, glittering world of business superstars, Nick Sinclair is a legend. The ruggedly handsome president of Global Industries handles his business the way he handles his women—with charm, daring, and ruthless self-control. A man used to the very best, Nick hires Lauren Danner and assumes the proud beauty will soon be another easy conquest. But Lauren’s flashing wit and rare spirit dazzles him and slowly, against his will, he’s intrigued, challenged, and in love. Yet he doesn’t know that Lauren is living a lie and, trapped in a web of deceit, she fights her growing love for Nick. Her secret could destroy his fragile trust and the promise of life with the most compelling man she has ever met.

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FOSTER SAGA


Remember When

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When multinational tycoon Cole Harrison approaches her on a moonlit balcony at the White Orchid Charity Ball, Diana Foster has no idea how life-changing the night ahead will be. The most lavish social event of the Houston season had brought out Texas aristocracy in glittering array but Diana only agreed to attend to save face after reading about her fiancé leaving her for an Italian heiress in a sleazy gossip magazine. Her Beautiful Living magazine is her family’s success story, and Diana knows that as a single, childless, and suddenly unengaged woman, she is not living up to its lucrative image of upscale domestic tranquility. But when she spots the pride of Dallas billionaires, Cole Harrison, closing in on her with two crystal flutes and a bottle of champagne, she has no idea that he has ulterior motives for seducing her tonight. And he certainly has no idea that a match made in what he considers logic’s heaven might be headed straight for an unexpected, once-in-a-lifetime love. “Judith McNaught once again works her unique magic in this charming, sparkling romance” (RT Book Reviews, 4 stars).

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 PARADISE SERIES


 Paradise

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“Judith McNaught comes close to an Edith Wharton edge” (The Chicago Tribune) in this stylish and fast-paced classic. Ruthless corporate raider Matthew Farrell is poised to move in on the legendary department store empire owned by Chicago’s renowned Bancroft family. In the glare of the media spotlight, it’s a stunning takeover that overshadows the electric chemistry between Matt, once a scruffy kid from steel town Indiana, and cool, sophisticated Meredith Bancroft. Their brief, ill-fated marriage sparked with thrilling sensuality but ended with a bitter betrayal. Now, locked in a battle that should be all business, dangerous temptations, and bittersweet memories are stirring their hearts. Will they risk everything for a passion too bold to be denied?

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Perfect

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A rootless foster child, Julie Mathison has blossomed under the love showered upon her by her adoptive family. Now a lovely and vivacious young woman, she is a respected teacher in her small Texas town and is determined to give back all the kindness she has received, believing that nothing can ever shatter the perfect life she has fashioned. Zachary Benedict is an actor whose Academy Award-winning career was shattered when he was wrongly convicted of murdering his wife. After the tall, ruggedly handsome Zack escapes from a Texas prison, he abducts Julie and forces her to drive him to his Colorado mountain hideout. She’s outraged, cautious, and unable to ignore the instincts that whispers of his innocence. He’s cynical, wary, and increasingly attracted to her. Desire is about to capture them both in its fierce embrace but the journey to trust, true commitment, and proving Zack’s innocence is just beginning.“A mixture of virtue and passion that is almost—ahem—perfect” (Kirkus Reviews) this is a captivating tale that fans will adore.

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Night Whispers

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In this “exciting tale of loyalty, love, and danger” (Publishers Weekly), Sloan Reynolds, a small-town Florida policewoman, knows that her modest upbringing is a long way from the social whirl of Palm Beach, the world inhabited by her father and her sister, Paris. Total strangers to Sloan, they have never tried to contact her—until a sudden invitation arrives, to meet them and indulge in the Palm Beach social season. Reluctant to accept the long-overdue familial gesture, Sloan is convinced to visit when an FBI colleague informs her that her father and his associates are suspected of fraud, conspiracy, and murder. The only catch is she must hide her true profession from her family. Sloan is on top of her game until she meets Noah Maitland, a multinational corporate player and one of the FBI’s prime suspects. She finds herself powerfully attracted to him, against her deepest instincts. When a shocking murder shatters the seductive facade of the wealth and glamour surrounding her, Sloan must maneuver through a maze of deceit and passion in this superb and enthralling tale of breathtaking suspense.

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Someone to Watch Over Me

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Leigh Kendall is relishing her stellar Broadway acting career in her marriage to Logan Manning, scion of an old New York family, when her husband finds the perfect mountain property for their dream house. But while driving upstate on a winter’s night, Leigh is run off the road in the midst of a blinding blizzard. When she awakes in the local hospital, seriously injured, the police inform her that her husband has mysteriously disappeared, and Leigh becomes the focus of their suspicions. The more she discovers about her husband and his business affairs, the less she realizes she knew about Logan Manning. Now, Leigh is heading deeper and deeper into unknown territory—where friends and enemies are impossible to distinguish, and the truth becomes the most terrifying weapon of all in this thrilling tale filled with unrelenting suspense, unforgettable characters, and powerful traces of greed, ambition, and desire. 

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About the Author 

Judith McNaught is the New York Times bestselling author who first soared to stardom with her stunning bestseller Whitney, My Love, and went on to win the hearts of millions of readers with Once and AlwaysSomething WonderfulA Kingdom of Dreams, Almost Heaven, ParadisePerfectUntil YouRemember WhenSomeone to Watch Over Me, the #1 bestseller Night Whispers, and other novels. There are more than thirty million copies of her books in print. She lives in Houston. Please visit her at JudithMcNaught.comand on Facebook at AuthorJudithMcNaught.

Blog Tour:

*****Harlequin Junkie: Spotlight Q&A with Judith McNaught!

A Midlife Wife

Agents of Romance

Alpha Heroes

Always Reviewing

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Books, Movies, Reviews! Oh My!

Celticlady’s Reviews

Dark Faerie Tales

Dear Author

Dew On The Kudzu

Dirty Girl Romance

Feeding My Addiction Book Reviews

KT Book Reviews

Live to Read

Mrs. Leif’s Two Fangs About It

Poof Books

Romancing the Readers

Romantic Reads and Such

Stephanie’s Book Reports

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The Book Enthusiast

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The Romance Reviews

Treat Yourself With Books

Undeniably Book Nerdy

Wrapped Up In Reading

WTF Are You Reading?

Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway: Take Me With You by @ninagjones

ninagjonesbannerTAKE ME WITH YOU
Genre:
Dark Romance
Author: Nina G. Jones
Release Date: October 17, 2016
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast PromotionsGoodreads Button with Shadow

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I watch.
I study.
I prowl.
I hunt.

I always go in with a plan. A set of rules for myself. I don’t take unnecessary risks. That’s how I’ve been able to evade capture all these years.

But there’s something about this girl that is different than the others. When I finally meet her, the rules become a blur. And I break the most important one of all—I take her with me.

——-

It’s just my imagination—that feeling of being watched. That those icy eyes— a vivid turquoise with a distinct golden fleck—aren’t watching me.

It’s just stress. I am the person everyone relies on. Maybe that’s why I haven’t been feeling so content with my life lately. Why I dream those eyes belong to someone who can tear me away from all of my responsibilities.

But these are just shameful fantasies, never meant to breach reality.

Then one night, the dream comes true, only it’s a horrific nightmare.

Now, I only have one task: survival.

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8

Review-DGR4 starstake-me-with-you-dgr-teaser

“Who are you?” I cry. “The Night,” he rasps.

What.
The.
Fuck.
Did.
I.
Just.
Read.

This book was all sorts of fucked up. ALL SORTS OF FUCKED UP, I TELLS YA! I need to be committed, my head examined, my sanity questioned… because I liked it. Never has something so wrong felt so…actually no. It just felt wrong. So very wrong.

Nina G. Jones was not afraid to go there. To the deepest, darkest depths of depravity. She didn’t just push comfort lines here, the woman ran over them with a damn mac truck. Then she backed that shit up and ran it the hell over 3 more times to make sure it stuck. To make sure that you question your sanity with every page. To make sure that you’re convinced that clearly something must be wrong with you for enjoying it. For questioning your damn sanity because you can’t put it down and yet it feels so wrong. SO VERY WRONG. Bah! Just bah!

Girls like her don’t want the beast. They want the idea of one. They want to be safe and still revel in the thrill. But there’s no safety with a monster. Because monsters consume. They take your body, your soul, and your innocence.

Imagine watching an episode of Criminal Minds and actually finding yourself falling for the perpetrator. There’s no gray area with this anti-hero. Fuck no. This man is as deep in the black as it gets. There’s no redemption in sight. He’s not a man that will tug at your heart strings. You’ll actually WANT to hate him. But here’s the thing? His character is written so freaking well, that you’ll actually understand him, and that, my friends, is where the mindfuck begins.

He’s all rippled muscles, and sweat, and filth. Eyes that reveal no soul or depth, clear as a demon’s.

Here’s what I’ll tell you about the book: NOTHING

And if you need to know something, then this book is not for you. It needs to be experienced and to do that, you need to be fully unprepared for what you’re getting yourself into.

I have news for you, Vesp. When you’re fucked up like me—like that—heaven and hell aren’t very different.”

Take Me With You is dark, twisted and immoral. It’s violent, crude and dirty. The characters are so far outside typical comfort zones and the norm, they may as well be in a different dimension. It was also phenomenally written, completely unputdownable, and utterly unforgettable.

I want him to fill me with his poison again. He likes the taste of my sadness and I like when he injects me with his venom. He is my danger, my greatest threat. When he’s on my side, I know that I am safe.


If you want a book that will take you out of your comfort zone, this is it. If you want a book with an anti-hero that will redeem himself at the end and it’s all twu wuv and rainbows at the end, this book is certainly not for you, my delicate friend.

He’s right there, still in front of me, forcing me to look into those eyes. Eyes that have stolen everything.

I’m still questioning my sanity for enjoying it as much as I did. I also need a mental health break full of bunnies and unicorns shitting rainbows after it. I tip my hat to you, Nina G. Jones, you’re a true evil genius. You’re not afraid to cross boundaries and go where most would shudder to. This was dark and twisted brilliance…in a filthy, completely fucked up way that is.


About the AuthorNina G. Jones is the author of seven full-length novels of various romance and erotica sub-genres. Her latest novel, Take Me With You, releases on October 17th.

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Blog Tour & Giveaway: The Sexy One by Lauren Blakely

sexyoneavailnowTHE SEXY ONE
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Romantic Comedy
Author: Lauren Blakely
Release Date: October 17, 2016
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the-sexy-one

Want a romance guaranteed to make you melt? Get ready to fall in love with THE SEXY ONE!

From the NYT Bestselling author of MISTER O, comes a sexy new standalone romance…

Let me count the ways why falling into forbidden love is not my wisest move…
1. She works with me every single day.
Did I mention she’s gorgeous, sweet, kind and smart?
2. She works in my home.
Playing with my five-year-old daughter. Teaching my little girl. Cooking for my princess. Which means…
3. She’s the nanny.
And that makes her completely off-limits…But it doesn’t stop me from wanting her. All of her.

***

The other nannies in this city don’t call him the Sexy One for nothing. My boss, the amazingly wonderful single father to the girl I take care of every day is ridiculously hot, like movie star levels with those arms, and those eyes, and that body. Not to mention, the way he dotes on his little girl melts me all over. But what really makes my knees weak are the times when his gaze lingers on me. In secret. When no one else is around.

I can’t risk my job for a chance at something more…can I? But I don’t know how to resist him much longer either…

With all the heat, heart and humor readers have come to expect, this newest standalone will make you laugh, swoon and feel like you’re falling in love!

Buy Links Amazon | Amazon Paperback | iBooks | Kobo | Barnes & Noble

teaser-8-copyExcerpt

“I want to talk to you about the other day.” He sounds so serious.All of a sudden, the weight of my mistake crashes down. “Are you firing me?” I blurt out.

His jaw drops. “What?”

“I’m sorry,” I say, and the wild anxieties consume me once more. “I love this job, and I love working with Hayden, and I didn’t mean to jeopardize it by . . .”

By making out with you? By touching you? By murmuring your name when you kissed me senseless in the cab, and would you please just do it again?

He steps closer. My stomach makes like a skydiver.

“You did not jeopardize a thing. I’m not firing you. I promise.” His blue eyes are locked to mine. “I hope I didn’t make you uncomfortable. And I hope I didn’t lose you, either. You’re so good at what you do, and I value your skills so much. You’re great with Hayden, and I don’t want to mess that up. I’m sorry for crossing the line.”

I shake my head. “It’s okay. I crossed it, too.”

He licks his lips. “And I really appreciated you inviting me out with your friends. I wanted to go, but I didn’t want to mess up your night. I didn’t want to make you uncomfortable.”

A grin threatens to take over my face because my heart soars. I thought he was turning me down. Instead, he was thinking of me. “You wouldn’t have messed it up.”

“I wouldn’t have?”

“No.” I latch onto Harper’s advice. Talk to him. “I wanted you there.”

My breath comes fast, and the hairs on my arms stand on end. We’re so near to each other—our words, our voices, our bodies. Everything in me reaches for him.

“I’m glad,” he whispers.

“And you don’t make me uncomfortable. I promise.”

He doesn’t say anything in response. Just nods. I press my teeth into my lips. My back is against the sink, and he’s standing so close I can smell him. The faint scent of his soap intoxicates me. He must have gone to the gym after work and taken a shower, and oh God, now I’m imagining him naked in the shower, soaping up his strong body. I go up in flames.

“What happened in the cab was”—he pauses, as if he’s searching for the right word—“crazy.” But the way he says it in a voice full of longing doesn’t sound like crazy-bad. It sounds like . . .

“Crazy-good,” I supply.

He nods. “So good,” he whispers, and inches closer.

“It was so good,” I echo, my voice breathy, full of this potent need for him.

He stares at me, his eyes brimming with heat. I exhale, and my lips part slightly. He’s looking at my mouth now, and I’m burning all over.

We collide.

His hands are in my hair, and his lips crush mine. My fingers race up his shirt and around his neck. I pull him against me, his strong, hard body aligned with mine. His erection presses against my belly, and the realization that he’s already hard thrills me. Sparks fly through me as I register how hard he is, and my God, I want him. I want to feel him slide into me, I want to take him deep into my body. I want him to know what he does to me, too—that I’m as turned on as he is, and I can’t stop kissing him.

His big hands curl around my head, and I moan into his mouth. I love how much bigger he is than I am—taller, broader, stronger. He meets every primal desire I have to be taken. I want this man to consume me. I want to be under him, I want to be pinned by him—I want the full weight of him moving over me.

His lips are demanding, coaxing out more and more kisses from me. More murmurs, more sighs. As I arch into him, he groans, rough and husky.

Then, he breaks the kiss.

“This is bad,” he says firmly, his breath coming heavily. But then, he’s not so certain at all. “Is this bad?”

“Yes,” I answer quickly. “It’s bad. But it’s so good.”

teaser-6-copy

About the Author

author-pic-lauren-blakelyAbout Lauren Blakely:

Since self-publishing her debut romance novel CAUGHT UP IN US three years ago, Lauren Blakely has sold more than 1 million books. She is known for her sexy contemporary romance style that’s full of heat, heart and humor. A devout fan of cake and canines, Lauren has plotted entire novels while walking her four-legged friends. She lives in California with her family. With eleven New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than sixty times. Her bestselling series include Sinful Nights, Seductive Nights, No Regrets, Caught Up in Love, and Fighting Fire as well as standalone romantic comedies like BIG ROCK, MISTER O and WELL HUNG, which were instant New York Times Bestsellers. In the fall she’ll release THE SEXY ONE, a swoony contemporary romance. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter at laurenblakely.com/newsletter.

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✮✮✮Celebrate the release of The SEXY ONE! Enter to win a NIGHT OF ROMANCE, including a $100 gift card to your favorite restaurant, Signed copies of Big Rock, Mister O, and Well Hung, $25 gift card to Fandango, $25 gift card to 1-800 Flowers, and a $25 gift card to Victoria’s Secret or Bath and Body Works for 1 winner. Second and Third place prizes include a Signed copy of Well Hung and $25 Amazon Gift Card.✮✮✮

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Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway: Thief of Hearts by @LHCosway

tohreviewtourThief of Hearts
Series: Hearts #5
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense
Author: L.H. Cosway
Release Date: October 4, 2016add-to-goodreads-button-2

lhcthiefheartscover6x9

Seduce the teacher.
Meet the cousin.
Make a deal.
Steal the painting.

Andrea Anderson has no clue of the thoughts churning around in the dark and dangerous ex-con’s head as he enters her classroom. In fact, she’s momentarily lost for words. Not in her entire teaching career has she had a student who looked quite like Stu Cross.

A widow at just twenty-eight, love is something Andie hasn’t considered a part of her life for a very long time. However, when lingering touches turn to whispered words and hot, searching stares, she begins to wonder if maybe she should take a leap of faith.

But Stu is in her class for a reason, and it has nothing to do with love. He’s there to burrow his way into her life and repay a debt, otherwise his family will suffer. Andie is the first person to show him true kindness since he left prison, and though he doesn’t want to mislead her, he doesn’t have another choice.

Before long, Stu can’t tell whether or not he’s acting anymore, and his feelings for Andie could throw all of his carefully crafted plans into complete and utter disarray.

**Can be read as a stand alone.

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toh5

Review-DGR5 stars

5 L-H-Cosway-I-LUV-YOU Stars!!!!!

à la Mode St. » fashion

People like you give people like me a soft place to fall. Otherwise we’d just be cold and hard.

à la Mode St. » fashionI haven’t read an L.H. Cosway book in waaaay too long. And I haven’t read all of her books. But I love every single one that I’ve read so far. What I love about L.H. Cosway is her ability to make me feel all the feels without telling me how to feel (Did you get that?). Her words and dialogue evoke such emotion and I get the feels from them. I usually don’t like student-teacher tropes but I went into this blind, and because I will read anything LH Cosway writes, I ended up loving it (duh!)! It’s not your typical student-teacher story.
à la Mode St. » fashion

I’d always been fascinated by stories like that, where words on a page could make you feel things as strongly as though the emotional trauma was happening in real life.

à la Mode St. » fashionStu & Andrea:
 : Andrea teaches adult students. Stu recently got out of prison and is sentenced to attend the adult class. He is the typical bad boy, and I fell SO HARD for Stu. He’s got a dirty mouth. Cosway has a way with dirty words probably because she’s British and dirty words just sound so much more cool and natural in a British accent. Lol. Stu is tall, dark, wears sunglasses, and he smokes! Gah, I love a smoker! (only in books. Haha). Stu PURSUES Andrea…relentlessly, and I loved every second. And he can be sweet as pie! He’s pretty much my perfect man….
both physically and cerebrally.

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”You’re just very, um, fit. I’m feeling a little self-conscious of all my jiggly bits.”

Stu grinned and reached for my hips. “I love all your jiggly bits.” Dipping his head down, he sucked one of my nipples into his mouth. “Especially these ones,” he continued, mouthing my breast.

à la Mode St. » fashionThere is insta-attraction, and these two are so
sexy awkward.
Andrea immediately thinks Stu is the bees-knees. She’s the dorky teacher, and he’s the hot student, and there is nothing cliché about anything in this book. After learning that Stu has a way with numbers, she connects him with her father who is a math professor to get Stu some individual tutoring. Andrea is actually a widow (so sad!), so she has trouble letting go of this part of her life. I loved how she did and how Stu got her there! I can’t say too much about the plot because I don’t want to give away any spoilers, and there were a couple surprise twists in the story. Ugh, I wish I could tell you everything, so go read the book so my mouth doesn’t splurge out all the deets! Go!
à la Mode St. » fashion

”I’m sure my oversized grey slacks get you real hot and bothered, Stuart,” I deadpanned.

“I could take or leave the slacks,” he breathed, all gravelly. “But those lips and your big brown eyes, now those are what get me all jacked up.”

à la Mode St. » fashionAndrea’s all like…


And Stu’s all like…


And I’m all like…

I LOVED Andrea’s dedication to teaching and wanting to see her students succeed. It defined her character so well. Being a teacher myself, I definitely related to Andrea in that way. I loved that it was a continuing theme in the book…education. Even after Stu and Andrea started their thing, Andrea didn’t stop wanting Stu to continue his education. She has the ability to see students’ strengths even if they aren’t the typical types of intelligence. My nerdy teacher side was like “Yes!” through this whole theme in the book. I love that Cosway even HAS themes in her books. What romance author has themes these days?! LOL!

I love that this whole book is written in Andrea’s pov. So many books coming out are written in alternating pov’s, which I really like sometimes, but I LOVE Cosway’s writing style so much that she just doesn’t need to alternate. I loved the mystery of Stu. I love the thief heist of the story. It was just so much fun! This book is all kinds of hot and swoony and perfection, so yeah, go read it now!


About the Author

l-h-cosway-author-picL.H. Cosway lives in Dublin, Ireland. Her inspiration to write comes from music. Her favourite things in life include writing stories, vintage clothing, dark cabaret music, food, musical comedy, and of course, books. She thinks that imperfect people are the most interesting kind. They tell the best stories. L.H. is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.

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Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway: Sparking The Fire by Kate Meader

blog-tour-banner-sparking-the-fireSPARKING THE FIRE
Series: Hot in Chicago #3
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Kate Meader
Release Date: September 27, 2016add-to-goodreads-button-2

sparking-the-fire

Heating up reading lists this Fall will be Kate Meader’s highly anticipated Sparking the Fire, the “sexy and sassy” (#1 New York Times bestselling author Jude Deveraux) steamy third novel in the Hot in Chicago series, where former lovers unexpectedly reunite for a sizzling affair that will have the director yelling, “Quiet on the set!”

Actor Molly Cade, America’s fallen sweetheart, finally has her shot at a Hollywood comeback with a dramatic new role as a tough-as-nails firefighter that promises to propel her back to the big time and restore her self-respect.

Wyatt Fox, resident daredevil at Engine Co. 6, needs a low-key job to keep him busy while he recovers from his latest rescue stunt. Consulting on a local movie shoot should add just enough spark to his day. Especially when in struts Molly Cade: the woman who worked his heart over good, and then left him in the Windy City dust.

Their story is straight out of a script: irrepressible, spunky heroine meets taciturn, smoldering hero. But these two refuse to be typecast, and when the embers of an old love are stoked, someone is bound to get burned…

Buy LinksAMAZON | B&N | iBOOKS | S&S | BaM | GOOGLE PLAY

Review-DGR

Kate Meader’s blazing Hot in Chicago firefighter series has “everything you want in a romance” (RT Book Reviews, Top Pick)! The flames of desire burn out of control in this sexy third novel when ex-lovers unexpectedly reunite for a sizzling affair that will have the director yelling, “Quiet on the set!”

Actor Molly Cade, America’s fallen sweetheart, finally has her shot at a Hollywood comeback with a dramatic new role as a tough-as-nails firefighter that promises to propel her back to the big time and restore her self-respect.

Wyatt Fox, resident daredevil at Engine Co. 6, needs a low-key job to keep him busy while he recovers from his latest rescue stunt. Consulting on a local movie shoot should add just enough spark to his day. Especially when in struts Molly Cade: the woman who worked his heart over good, and then left him in the Windy City dust.

Their story is straight out of a script: irrepressible, spunky heroine meets taciturn, smoldering hero. But these two refuse to be typecast, and when the embers of an old love are stoked, someone is bound to get burned…

Buy LinksAMAZON | B&N | iBOOKSReview-DGR5 starssparking-the-fire-dgr-teaser

He’d thought he could control himself around Molly, yet every second in her presence loosened the granite hold on his emotions one more slippery, dangerous inch.

That’s it! Stick a fork in me, I’m done! I am a pile of dead and melted goo, all at the hands of a broody, silent, former Marine turned firefighter. I would like my headstone to read that my ultimate demise came from the hottest BILF I’ve ever read, and I regret nothing. NOTHING.

What’s a BILF you ask?

She poked him in the chest. “Drunk, sober, any state, I would be doin’ you tonight, Mister. Lucky. That’s what you are. A total BILF.”
“BILF?”
“Beard I’d like to fuck.”

When I’m in a book funk, I know all I need is 5 minutes with a Kate Meader book and I’ll have an instant goofy grin on my face and the worst case of blue ovaries known to man kind. Why? Because the woman writes some of the best alpha heroes and I can’t get enough of it!

So what happens when a silent and socially awkward firefighter that likes to stay in the shadow of his infamous foster siblings meets a woman who’s in the very center of the spotlight? A. Whole. Lot. Of. Awesome.

Their lives did not mesh. She was Hollywood designer duds. He was Chicago Dumpster diving. And he wanted her more than his next breath. But since when in hell had he ever gotten anything he wanted?

Wyatt Fox is the quietest one of his siblings, the unassuming one, the one that sticks to himself. But for six nights years ago, he let his inhibitions fly with a woman that left him in the dust but he hasn’t stopped thinking about since.

Molly Cade is used to the media attention, but after an ugly divorce brought her on the wrong end of public scrutiny, she’s hoping the new movie she’s starring and producing will turn things around on her. Little does she expect that the new CFD consultant on the movie set is none other than the man that she never expected to see again. Suffice it to say that sparks fly and fires are set!
Sparking The Fire is written in Meader’s signature sassy style with plenty of sexy and a whole lot of banter which I’ve come to be addicted to.

She placed her palms on his shoulders. “You planning to glare me into orgasm, Marine?”
“I don’t glare. I smolder.”

I am head over ovaries in love with this series. I’d set my house on fire just to get my very own Wyatt Fox to come over and put out my fire…uhem.

The romance is full of sizzle and spark, and just enough sexual chemistry to set your kindle on fire. I loved the back and forth between Molly and Wyatt. The odds are stacked against them and they’re complete opposites, but yet they can’t stay away from each other.

Molly was absolute perfection. She’s sassy and funny and doesn’t let anything get her down. She has a backbone but still has this perfect amount of vulnerability to make her incredibly endearing. As for Wyatt? Wowza! I’m all about the BILF.

Nothing had ever felt this good. No one had ever felt this good. It had always been her.

If you haven’t read this series, you’re seriously missing out. If you haven’t read anything by this amazing author, you’re seriously missing out. And if you haven’t made plans to meet Wyatt Fox, then you’re SERIOUSLY missing out!

Kate Meader is going to spoil me with her awesomeness soon, but you won’t hear a peep of complaint out of this reader.


HOT IN CHICAGO SERIES 

REKINDLE THE FLAME | FLIRTING WITH FIRE | MELTING POINT | PLAYING WITH FIRE | SPARKING THE FIRE

About the Authorkatemeader

Kate Meader was raised on romance. An Irish girl, she started with Catherine Cookson and Jilly Cooper novels, and spiced it up with some Mills & Boon. Now based in Chicago, she writes romances of her own, where sexy contemporary alpha heroes and strong heroines match each other quip for quip. When not immersed in tales of brooding mill owners, oversexed equestrians, and men who can rock an apron or a fire hose, Kate lives on the web at katemeader.com.

 

GiveawayHOT TIP: Kate is also offering a $25 Amazon gift card during the Sparking the Fire release tour. It will run Monday September 26 to Friday October 7. Enter here.

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Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway: Well Hung by Lauren Blakely

adwhcoupleavailablemnWELL HUNG
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Romantic Comedy
Author: Lauren Blakely
Release Date: September 10, 2016add-to-goodreads-button-2

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From the NYT Bestselling author of MISTER O, comes a hot and hilarious new standalone…
Here’s what you need to know about me — I’m well-off, well-hung and quick with a joke. Women like a guy who makes them laugh—and I don’t mean at the size of his d*ck. No, they want their funny with a side of huge… not to mention loyal. I’ve got all that plus a big bank account, thanks to my booming construction business. Yup. I know how to use all my tools.

Enter Natalie. Hot, sexy, smart, and my new assistant. Which makes her totally off limits… 

Hey, I’m a good guy. Really. I do my best to stay far away from the kind of temptation she brings to work.

Until one night in Vegas… 

Yeah, you’ve heard this one before. Bad news on the business front, drowning our sorrows in a few too many Harvey Wallbangers, and then I’m banging her. In my hotel room. In her hotel room. Behind the Titanic slot machine at the Flamingo (don’t ask). And before I can make her say “Oh God right there YES!” one more time, we’re both saying yes—the big yes—at a roadside chapel in front of a guy in press-on sideburns and a shiny gold leisure suit.

But it turns out what happened in Vegas didn’t stay in Vegas. And now, my dick doesn’t stay in my pants when she’s around. I try to resist. Honest. But the more we try to keep our hands to ourselves, the more we end up naked again, and the more time I want to spend with her fully clothed, too.

The question now is…do I take this woman to be my ex-wife?

Buy Links

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whteaserbangassistantmsmall

Excerpt

She twirls the pen in her hand. “So who caused the contamination today? Was it Floyd or Kevin the oily electrician you tried to put a chokehold on?”“Oily Kevin needed the chokehold. Agree or disagree?”

She nods. “Completely agree. There’s so much agreement in me, I can’t imagine how much more I could possibly agree.”

“The chokehold was one hundred percent certifiably necessary,” I add, since Kevin had hit on her when he stopped by a few weeks ago. Here’s the thing—Natalie could dropkick him in the blink of an eye. She could slam him to the ground herself. But that shit he pulled with the leering and lewd comments does not fly with me. I would have done the same if a dude tried to get fresh with my little sister, Josie, at the bakery where she works. So I’d dropped a hand on Kevin’s shoulder, Vulcan style, and promptly escorted him the fuck out of my office. No one, and I mean no one, gets to put the moves on my employees.

“It was Floyd today,” I tell her, then give her the safe-for-work version of the story—the one about Floyd’s client conquests, not his comments about banging assistants. There’s no need to have that hanging out there in the air between us. Can’t plant that forbidden idea in her head.

That risky, dangerous, dirty, filthy, completely fucking alluring idea. My eyes roam the office briefly, and I catalogue all the places that are calling out to be christened. Her desk, her chair, the floor…

Just like that, my head is a wild rumpus of inappropriate ideas. Exactly what it shouldn’t be. It’s like horny aliens have invaded my mind.

But I’m not Floyd. I can do better, so I picture a vise, jam the images into it, and crush them out of my mind. The dirty images and the horny aliens, too.

“And then I escorted him out of Lila’s home and said see ya later,” I tell her, finishing the story, as I drag a hand through my dark brown hair. “Like, in another lifetime later.”

“Hmmm…” she says.

“Hmm, that’s great, or hmm, why did I give one of our suppliers the heave-ho?”

“Hmm, as in your story gives me a good idea. Something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.”

“What’s that?”

Her eyes sparkle. Hers are a lighter shade than my dark blue. “Want me to find a new hinge supplier?”

The idea is beyond perfect. I smack my palm against the edge of her desk enthusiastically. “Yes. And for the record, you’re brilliant and beauty—“ I cut the last word off so it sounds like a low bass note. Note to self: Don’t call her beautiful when you’re berating other men for hitting on her at work.

She’s watching me, waiting for me to finish my sentence, and somehow I twist the words into a new compliment, as I say, “Brilliant, and…bountiful.”

Bountiful? Seriously? What the hell was that? Maybe she won’t notice.

No such luck.

“Bountiful?” she asks, skepticism thick in her tone. As it fucking should be. “I’m bountiful?”

I nod, going with it, owning it. “Your brain. It’s like a cornucopia of ideas. It’s a Thanksgiving bounty. It’s bountiful,” I say, because I’ve got to sell this cover-up.

She squares her shoulders. “If you say so, Hammer.” And this bountiful brain was two steps ahead today. I already found a new supplier. I called around, talked to some of our colleagues, and got some great recommendations. I already have a new hinge guy lined up.”

My smile spreads quickly. “Damn. You are three steps ahead of me.”

“A good assistant should be.”

whteaserfixasinkmsmall

Review-DGR5 stars5 Horny Aliens Stars!!!!!

(Don’t google “horny aliens.” Very bad idea. Just read this book instead.)

BAD, BAD, JENNIFER!!! I am putting myself in the corner because this is the first Lauren Blakely book I’ve ever read, and I am kicking myself for it!

Lauren Blakely deserves all of my happiness because that is exactly what I’m giving her right now.

20515589-_sx540_Wyatt Hammer…..yep, that’s his name….owns a construction company. He has a fantastic assistant who helps him with scheduling, and is pretty much his dream woman, but because she works for him, he is trying to be the good guy and keep it professional. They get a contract in Vegas and fly out together to make it happen, and after it falls through, agree to have one night of Vegas together. You can see where this is going.

My Wyatt:
Chris Pratt Eye Candy : theBERRY:
à la Mode St. » fashion

Natalie: Become ugly. Act like an asshole. Stop being so damn caring.

Wyatt: Likewise, could you start acting like a cold-hearted bitch who’ll stab me in the back? It’d make it so much easier to keep my hands off you.

Natalie: If you could get a reversal on your sense of humor so I wouldn’t laugh so much around you, that’d also help.

Wyatt: While you’re at it, please stop having so damn much in common with me.

à la Mode St. » fashionMy Natalie:

Amber Heard:
Natalie is just trying to do her job of being an organized assistant for Wyatt’s construction company, but his hot body keeps distracting her. She is a badass ninja but also a girly, flirty girl looking for her unicorn. We don’t hear much of Natalie’s pov, but I still had a clear picture of who she was and what she might be thinking. The texting between her and her friends and sister was definitely entertaining and a nice addition to the story.

20515590-_sy540_
The beginning of this book is everything. Even though Wyatt is trying to stay away, I love that he just went for what he wanted. I loved that Natalie was touchy and flirty without being inappropriate or annoying. I loved that the happiness of the beginning of this book lasted for almost half of the book. So many Vegas books start off with the dread of the morning after, but with this one, we get to live all of the wonderful goodness of the Vegas moments and I loved that.
à la Mode St. » fashion

She’s slipping through my fingers, this woman tangled up with me in the mess we made one crazy night. Now, I want all those entanglements. I crave them. Judging from this emptiness in my chest, I fucking need them, because this moment with her – her sweetness, her zaniness, her upside-down sense of humor that matches mine – is the only balm to that ache.

à la Mode St. » fashion
I LOVED that this whole book was in Wyatt’s point of view. Few authors can write a whole book from a guy’s pov, but this author CAN! And she did an awesome job of it. I literally laughed out loud, more than once. The cheesy jokes between these two….it just worked! This book felt like a combination of Tessa Bailey and Emma Chase and I ate up every word. The hotness level in this book just sends it over the edge of awesome.

About the Author

daisywhitneylaurenblakelyheadshot_smallSince self-publishing her debut romance novel CAUGHT UP IN US three years ago, Lauren Blakely has sold more than 1 million books. She is known for her sexy contemporary romance style that’s full of heat, heart and humor. A devout fan of cake and canines, Lauren has plotted entire novels while walking her four-legged friends. She lives in California with her family. With ten New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than fifty times. Her bestselling series include Sinful Nights, Seductive Nights, No Regrets, Caught Up in Love, and Fighting Fire as well as standalone romantic comedies like BIG ROCK and MISTER O, which were both instant New York Times Bestsellers. In the fall she’ll release WELL HUNG, another romantic comedy. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter, laurenblakely.com/newsletter!

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Newsletter | Goodreads

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Launch Day Blitz & Giveaway: The Protector by Jodi Ellen Malpas

The-Protector-Launch-Day-Blitz-5THE PROTECTOR
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Jode Ellen Malpas
Release Date: September 6, 2016
Forever Trade Paperback & Forever eBookadd-to-goodreads-button-2

The Protector

THE NEW NOVEL FROM THE #1 BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE THIS MAN TRILOGY AND ONE NIGHT TRILOGY!

People think they have Camille Logan nailed: daddy’s girl; beautiful, spoiled young woman with her father’s bank balance to fund her lifestyle. But Camille is determined to have a life free from his strings. Out on her own, she’s made mistakes, including one that found her clawing her way back after a stint in rehab and plenty of bad press. Now, after fighting so hard to be independent and happy, she finds her life threatened as a result of her father’s ruthless business dealings. Caught between resentment and fear, Camille prepares herself for the measures her father will take to protect her. But nothing could prepare her for the ex-SAS sniper who crashes into her life.

Jake Sharp resides in his own personal hell. He was distracted from duty once before, and the consequences were devastating–both personally and professionally. He vowed never to let that happen again. Accepting the job of bodyguard to Camille Logan isn’t the kind of distraction from his demons he should take. Women and Jake don’t mix well, yet protecting the heiress seems the lesser of two evils. But Jake soon discovers that she isn’t the woman she’s perceived to be. She’s warm, compassionate, her presence settling, and his duty to protect her soon goes deeper than a well-paid job, no matter how hard he fights it. He needs absolution. He comes to need Camille. But he knows he can’t have both.

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The-Protector-Quote-Graphic-#3-2About the AuthorJodi was born and raised in the Midlands town of Northampton, England, where she lives with her two boys and a beagle. She is a self-professed daydreamer, a Converse & mojito addict, and has a terrible weak spot for Alpha Males.

Writing powerful love stories and creating addictive characters has become her passion – a passion she now shares with her devoted readers.

She’s now a proud #1 New York Times bestselling author – all six of her published novels having hit theNew York Times bestsellers list – as well as a Sunday Times bestseller and international bestseller. Her work is published in over 20 languages across the world.

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