#DGRFave & Review: Angry God by LJ Shen

ANGRY GOD
Series: All Saints High #3
Genre: New Adult Romance
Author: L.J. Shen
Release Date: February 18, 2020

Vaughn Spencer.
They call him an angry god.
To me, he is nothing but a heartless prince.

His parents rule this town, its police, every citizen and boutique on Main Street.

All I own is a nice, juicy grudge against him for that time he almost killed me.

Between hooking up with a different girl every weekend, breaking hearts, noses and rules, Vaughn also finds the time to bully little ole’ me.

I fight back, tooth and nail, never expecting him to chase me across the ocean after we graduate high school.

But here he is, living with me in a dark, looming castle on the outskirts of London.

A fellow intern. A prodigal sculptor. A bloody genius.

They say this place is haunted, and it is.

Carlisle Castle hides two of our most awful secrets.

Vaughn thinks he can kill the ghosts of his past, but what he doesn’t know? It’s my heart he’s slaying.

AMAZON

We were an unfinished business, personal and always walking the tight rope between love and hate.

Let’s talk about angst for a hot second here. Because this book? Mother. Of. All. Angst. Would you expect anything less from any kid of Vicious?

This book. This book was EVERYTHING. It’s not for the faint of heart. It was gritty, painful, and downright captivating. It was deliciously angsty and rip your hair out frustrating. It was all of the things. Full of depth and emotion, layered with an angst only Shen can deliver, and characters that you won’t be forgetting any time soon.

I knew that LJ was going to be saving the best for last, and she did not disappoint. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve loved the previous books, but there was just something about this one that felt different. it was…more. It was like a live wire under your skin the entire time you were reading it. We’ve seen glimpses of Vaughn in the previous books, and it’s no secret that the guy is all sorts of messed up. His story unravels all those layers to bring you to the heart of who he is. And who he is, is deep, multi-layered, and oh so broken.

I was born with an insatiable appetite for destruction.

What I loved most about this book is how the characters balance each other. Vaughn may be all sorts of screwed up, but Lenora doesn’t just take it lying down. She gives as good as she gets, and in some parts, even better. I loved that about her. The girl has grit. She’s got a spine of steal and a smart mouth to go along with it. The two of them together were instant sparks.

There’s a lot of back and forth and their road is definitely not an easy one. It’s angsty, gritty, and dark. And I do mean DARK. This book is much darker than the rest of the series and it definitely fits. But don’t go into it expecting butterflies and rainbows. Your heart will break. It will bleed. It will ache. And at the end you’ll be thankful for it.

Angry God was everything I hoped it would be and so much more. Shen has given us one of her most tortured heroes to date, and I was SO HERE FOR IT!!!

Review & Excerpt: Then You Happened by K. Bromberg

THEN YOU HAPPENED
Genre: 
Contemporary Romance
Author:
K. Bromberg
Release Date:
February 3, 2019

“Bromberg is the master of making hearts race and pulses pound.” -Jay Crownover, New York Times bestselling author

Then You Happened, an all-new small town stand-alone romance from New York Times bestselling author K. Bromberg, is available now!

 

Jack Sutton was the man I didn’t want to need.

His know-it-all attitude. His annoying suggestions. His outlook on life.

He was determined to help me while I had resolved to figure it out on my own.

But he taught me things I’d forgotten.

How to trust. How to believe in myself. Who I was.

The problem?

I went and fell in love with him.

Tatum Knox was the disaster I should have walked away from.

Her ruined reputation. Her failing business. Her chaotic life.

She hated me at first sight and yet intrigued me all at the same time.

I was only supposed to be there six months.

I was supposed to use that time to make amends for things I’d done wrong.

Instead I fell in love with her.

They say it’s better to have loved and lost, then not to have loved at all. Does that hold true when the love is based on a lie to begin with?

(THEN YOU HAPPENED is a STANDALONE enemies to lovers, small town romance. Full-length at one hundred and seven thousand words)

AMAZON | iBOOKS | NOOK | KOBO | GOOGLE PLAY

“Just face it, Knox. You’re head over heels in love with me.” Jack finally smiles, dimple winking and those eyes lighting up as he takes a step toward me, holding the scoop to his chest. “You can’t be near me because you want me, and you can’t talk to me because you get all flustered and tongue-tied.”“There is nothing about you I find attractive,” I lie.

He places the scoop in my hand but doesn’t let it go when I try to take it. “It’d be much easier and a whole lot less distracting if I could say the same of you.” He lets go of the scoop and dips the tip of his hat in an aw-shucks kind of way. “But I’m not one to lie.”

Our eyes hold across the short distance as his comment floats through the air and fades like the dust specks dancing in the sunlight.

“That won’t work, you know?” I say.

“What won’t?”

“You trying to charm me every time you want something. I know your kind, Jack Sutton, and I’m not impressed by them.”

“Is that so?” He shifts on his feet and adjusts his hat before re-crossing his arms over his chest. “And what kind is that?”

“A man who uses his good looks and smooth words to get his way with people. A man who turns on the charm to disguise it.”

His eyes darken and then narrow. “Just like you’re the woman who keeps living her privileged life . . . fiddling while Rome burns down around her?” he counters, making me want to scream that he knows nothing about me or how I live or what I’ve been through for the last year. A small part of me is shouting about how that was his point, but I tell the voice to shut up. “And if by good looks and smooth words, you’re implying I’m like Fletcher, I suggest you not infer that again.” That muscle in his jaw feathers in contempt.

“I’m not the woman you think I am.”

He twists his lips and stares at me in a way that feels like he is seeing right through me. It’s unnerving and unsettling, and I force myself not to look away because his silence is telling me that maybe he thinks I am.

I’m not sure why that bugs me. Why I want him to see me as someone different.

“I’m not even certain you know who that woman is either.”

There’s something about Jack Sutton that calls to me, and it’s so much more than learning how to trust again.

K. Bromberg is my happy place. She just is. And with every book she releases, she just solidifies that place more and more in my heart. Her stories hit me right in the feels and this one just rooted right in and made itself at home.
*happy sigh*

Tatum Knox. The unexpected woman I can’t seem to get enough of. I’ve definitely fucking fallen for her. And hell if that isn’t a hard one to swallow.

This is a heartfelt and highly emotional story of redemption, forgiveness, and moving on. It’s a wonderfully poignant romance with plenty of feels and all of the sizzle, and this reader couldn’t get enough.

Tatum Knox is one tough cookie. After giving up everything for a man once, she’s now learning how to pick up the pieces of the semblance of what her life once was. She’s tough, angry, and totally fierce. Trying to make ends meet living in a small town that hates her and holding on to her ranch that’s barely breaking even. She’s determined to make it work, and she won’t let anyone run her off, even when the town’s citizens are fully determined to do so. So when a gorgeous cowboy shows up on her doorstep promising to be her salvation as her branch manager, she promptly fires him before even hiring him.

Jack is a mystery wrapped in an enigma. He’s in the small town and on Tatum’s doorstep to pay a debt he promised to keep. So even when she snipes at him at every turn and the gossip about her is less than pleasant, he has enough reason to stay and work through it. But as he works through Tatum’s defenses, he begins to see a whole different side to the woman she first seems to be.

This was such a beautiful romance, y’all. It was full of heart and emotion. Both Tatum and Jack are slow to trust, yet they soon figure out that they fit each other’s broken pieces. Jack is everything I love in my heroes. He’s a little cocky, funny, and determined. When he sets his eyes on Tatum, he fights their connection HARD. But the connection between them is simply undeniable.

I adored this story. Simply adored it. I loved the two of them together. I loved their road to HEA even if it was filled with plenty of bumps along the way. There are some characters that I would have loved some more closure for, but alas, this book wouldn’t be as touching as it was if that was there. If you’re looking for a memorable and emotional read, you need this one in your life!

New York Times Bestselling author K. Bromberg writes contemporary novels that contain a mixture of sweet, emotional, a whole lot of sexy, and a little bit of real. She likes to write strong heroines, and damaged heroes who we love to hate and hate to love.

A mom of three, she plots her novels in between school runs and soccer practices, more often than not with her laptop in tow.

Since publishing her first book in 2013, Kristy has sold over one million copies of her books across sixteen different countries and has landed on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestsellers lists over twenty-five times. Her Driven trilogy (Driven, Fueled, and Crashed) is currently being adapted for film by Passionflix with the first movie slated to release in the summer of 2018.

She is currently working on her Everyday Heroes trilogy. This series consists of three complete standalone novels—Cuffed, Combust, and Cockpit (late spring 2018)—and is about three brothers who are emergency responders, the jobs that call to them, and the women who challenge them.

She loves to hear from her readers so make sure you check her out on social media or sign up for her newsletter to stay up to date on all her latest releases and sales: http://bit.ly/254MWtI

 

Connect with K. Bromberg

Website: http://www.kbromberg.com

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2QYIfBC

Twitter: http://bit.ly/2sVi7Qe

Instagram: http://bit.ly/36ywE2S

Amazon Author: http://amzn.to/204Qnfz

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Jennifer & Lana’s Review: The Rules of Engagement by JT Geissinger

THE RULES OF ENGAGEMENT
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Romcom
Author: JT Geissinger
Release Date: January 28, 2020

Love is a battlefield for a quirky matchmaker and the cocky football star who hires her to find him a wife.

As the owner of Perfect Pairings matchmaking service, Maddie McRae earns her living helping others fall in love. And one thing the sweet Southern belle knows for sure is that the foundation of wedded bliss is built on similarities: opposites might attract, but they don’t stay together.

Enter Mason Spark.

Rude, arrogant, and notoriously allergic to monogamy, the hottest quarterback in the NFL is Maddie’s polar opposite. He’s also her new client. Her gorgeous, infuriating new client who’s paying her an outrageous sum of money to find him a wife. With his multi-million dollar contract on the line due to his behavior on and off the field, bad boy Mason is willing to pretend to settle down.

But when he starts to fall for the adorkable matchmaker who can’t stand him, the playboy finds himself in the game of his life to keep something he never thought he’d lose—his heart.

Eyes blazing, she says, “You know, before I met you, I hadn’t argued with anyone in fifteen years.”
“Doubtful. That tongue of yours is way too sharp to be outta practice.”

OH MY GOD. My face actually hurts from smiling so much. This was the most fun I’ve had reading a book in a while. It had the perfect amount of humor all wrapped around witty and fun banter, all anchored by a sizzling slow burn romance that I couldn’t get enough of.

My mistake was presenting lovely, intelligent, gracious single women who desired to meet equally lovely, intelligent, gracious single men. What Mason Spark needs is a lady gorilla.

J.T. Geissinger is an auto-read author for me. I don’t even bother reading the blurbs to her books because I already know I’m going to read them. But when I saw she’s coming out with something different from her usual, you know I had to read the blurb. And when I read the blurb to this, it gave me total Match Me If You Can vibes. And in case it’s not obvious, I loved Match Me If You Can. Yet this is not exactly the type of trope you find often. Now don’t get me wrong, this book totally stood out in its own unique right, and it hit every spot I never even knew I had.

It’s too bad the man has the personality of a chupacabra, because he’s actually very good-looking.

Mason is a football superstar, and a royal grump. I’m talking the king of grumps here. He’s a bit of a recluse and the only kind of woman he likes is a temporary one. But his agent is convinced that the only thing that would pull his terrible rep out of the pits of hell is a woman. Or a wife specifically. There’s just one problem, Mason has the temperament of a bear with a thorn in his paw. In comes Maddie, matchmaker extraordinaire. She’s a little prissy, a lot proper, with souther charm, a love of pink and mouth full of sass. The two of them set off instant fireworks, and so begins the best banter of all time.

Mason doesn’t believe in love where Maddie loves love. She’s determined to find Mason the perfect woman while he’s convinced she doesn’t exist. They snipe and snarl at each other at every step, and soon Maddie realizes that Mason doesn’t just need a matchmaker, he needs a dating coach. And off they go. You guys. These two had some of the funniest, cutest, and witty banter I’ve read in a while. The two of them set the pages on fire with their chemistry. And yet the slow burn sizzled so good, it actually made my ovaries hurt. True story.

Maddie is the perfect southern belle to Mason’s grump. GOD. He was so grumpy. I loved him. I loved her even more. Enter the most perfect secondary characters with Maddie’s aunt and Mason’s agent, and everything was just GAH. I couldn’t get enough of this story. Like I never wanted it to end. It was the cutest, quirkiest, sassiest, swooniest thing EVER. SO stinking good. If you’re looking for a lighthearted, witty, and feel-good romcom, this will hit every spot for you. TRUST ME.


JENNIFER’S REVIEW

This book is a super sweet read with a big dollop of sexual tension. It was sexual tension at first sight! It had me grinning through the whole thing, and I enjoyed every second of it.


Mason.

He is just so grumpy! And delicious! I love him! He’s got some PR issues, so his manager connects him with a matchmaker. He doesn’t want one, but he goes along with it. From the moment he meets Maddie, there are sparks and chemistry and delightful frustration. Mason has some anger management to deal with (along with basic dating etiquette), and Maddie is there to keep him in check and determined to find the right match for him, despite all of his outward emotional flaws.

Maddie.

She runs a matchmaking business and believes in true love. She’s got the sexy librarian look going on, but she is a tough pink cookie. Despite Maddie being the polar opposite of Mason, she still sees the good in him. She goes toe-to-toe with him in every verbal battle, and I loved her.

Mason and Maddie have both been hurt in the past in different ways (I appreciate that the author didn’t spend too much time on this), which makes them connect on a deeper level and need each other that much more.

It’s the perfect haters to lovers romance. The sweet sexual tension. The slow burn. I’m not usually a fan of slow burns, but this one had me hooked and I just couldn’t stop reading because of all the grinning.

I’ll read anything J.T. writes.

p.s. I didn’t care for the multiple points of view (match-making behind the scenes). It was cute, but it just wasn’t for me.

J.T. Geissinger is a bestselling author of emotionally charged romance and women’s fiction. Ranging from funny, feisty rom coms to intense, edgy suspense, her books have sold more than one million copies and been translated into several languages.

She is the recipient of the Prism Award for Best First Book, the Golden Quill Award for Best Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, and is a two-time finalist for the RITA® Award from the Romance Writers of America®. She has also been a finalist in the Booksellers’ Best, National Readers’ Choice, and Daphne du Maurier Awards.

Her first novel was published in 2012. Since then she’s written eighteen more novels. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, drinking wine, surfing the internet, and daydreaming about all the things she’s going to be when she grows up. She lives near the beach in Los Angeles with her husband and deaf/demented rescue kitty, Ginger.

Connect with J.T. Geissinger

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | GoodReads | BookBub | Website

Join Geissinger’s Gang Reader Group: http://bit.ly/2Oj7iMg

Stay up to date by joining J.T.’s mailing list: http://bit.ly/39KRQol

 

#DGRFave & Review: The Third Best Thing by Maya Hughes

THE THIRD BEST THING
Series: Fulton U #3
Genre: Contemporary, New Adult, Sports Romance
Author: Maya Hughes
Release Date: January 30, 2020

Dear Letter Girl, I need to see you. When can we meet?

Her response never came. My secret pen pal with a dirty mind has ghosted me. I’ve roped Jules, my sweet as pie next door neighbor, to help me track her down.

There’s only one problem–I’m falling for her. The tortoise shell glasses, out of this world curves and delicious treats are making the search for The Letter Girl even harder.

My notes were supposed to be a one time thing.

A little too much wine and naughty thoughts on a winter’s night. I never thought Berk would write back. I wanted to tell him it was me, but the fear of rejection kept my lips sealed.

Now he’s enlisted my help to track down The Letter Girl and our search has him hot on my, ahem, her trail.

She’s the girl next door.

He’s my secret pen pal.

Truth is on a collision course with their hearts and it’s only a matter of time before one of them gets wrecked…

She was an indescribable kind of perfect for me. The kind that made my heart ache that I’d only just found her and was ready to get down on my knees so I didn’t have to wait another day without knowing her beauty.

Be. Still. My. Heart.
It’s so full right now. I can’t stop grinning. This book was one of the most satisfying, feel-good, keep you swooning from beginning to finish kind of reads. My absolute favorite in the series and favorite Maya Hughes book to date!! It was, simply, EVERYTHING. Like all of the things. Perfection between the pages. I never wanted it to end.

Everything about her made me want to never let her go. She was the kind of woman I’d dreamed of one day being at my side. Beautiful. So warm and caring, and with a hint of a potty mouth.

Berk has been one of the most fun secondary characters in this series. He’s the goofball that always has an easy smile on his face. But you just know that beneath the smiles and easy going attitude there are some hidden layers, and boy were those deep. As a hero, this man was beyond multi-layered. Berk is a character with a tremendous amount of depth. he’s a guy that hides his pain and difficult childhood behind easy smiles and fun loving attitude. But beneath the college football superstar persona, is just a boy that wants love.

Jules has been crushing on Berk for over a year. What first started as a way for her to get her feelings out by writing him anonymous letters, soon turned into more when they began to write each other. But while Jules knows exactly who the letters are going to, Berk only knows her as the mysterious Letter Girl that he’s desperate to know the identity of. Living next door to each other they develop a sweet friendship. And while Berk adores Jules for everything that she is, Jules struggles with self esteem issues and can’t imagine someone like Berk ever going for someone like her.

I have to say that I loved both of these characters so much. Both Berk and Jules were incredibly multilayered with their own broken pieces. I loved how they filled in the broken pieces for each other in their friendship. I loved seeing Jules through Berk’s eyes, and I loved even more watching their friendship blossom into something so much more. Berk is a hero that’s simply impossible not to love. He’s vulnerable and tough, and oh so endearing.

Jules, even though her crazy family has certainly added to a lot of her self esteem issues is still a tough cookie. I loved watching her grow into herself throughout the book. She’s not a damsel and I loved that about her. And together? GAH. PERFECTION. I couldn’t get enough of the two of them. If you’re looking for a New Adult romance that has one of the most memorable friends to lovers tropes I’ve ever read, you need this book in your life. I’m addicted to this series. Simply addicted.


ALSO AVAILABLE IN THE FULTON U SERIES

And FREE to Read with Kindle Unlimited
#1 The Perfect First
US: https://amzn.to/2uU4n96
 #2 The Second We Met
US: https://amzn.to/31hczw4

Maya Hughes can often be found sneaking in another chapter while hiding in the bathroom from her kids! 🙂 I’m a romance writer who loves taking inspiration from everyday life, namely my husband and biggest fan. Inspiration also strikes when I hear a song, meet someone new or daydream while at soccer practice.
I’m the mom of three little ones, the wife to an amazing husband and also work full time. Some of my favorite things are cinnamon rolls, white wine, laughing until I can’t breathe and traveling with my family.

AUTHOR LINKS

Review: Bastard Bachelor Society by Sara Ney

BASTARD BACHELOR SOCIETY
Series:
The Bachelor Club #1
Genre: Dark Romance
Author: Julia Sykes
Release Date: January 28, 2020

What is the Bastard Bachelor Society?

It’s a gentleman’s club—like the dignified men of the past used to have.

Except, we’re not gentleman, and we’re not dignified.

We’re ineligible bachelors; bored, jaded and not looking for relationships. Quite the opposite actually…

We’re so committed to being single, we’ve created a high stakes bet to see who can remain single the longest. Rules are involved. Prizes.

Laugh it up, but I’m no loser.

Enemy number one to my single status? My irresistible neighbor, Abbott Margolis. She with her evil cat Desdemona, and Sexy AF pencil skirts. She’s kind and beautiful and hilarious. We can’t get involved, no matter how much her meddling grandmother pushes us together. But if I was going to lose this bet for anyone? It would be for Abbott.

Let’s face facts: I’m a bastard, unwilling to settle down. Especially when there’s a bet to win.

AMAZON

I already decided to friend-zone her—where does she get the audacity to friend-zone me? Doesn’t she realize the pecking order here? It starts with me. Me, at the top, hen-pecking away and deciding who gets what. I do the zoning in my relationships. Me. Not her.

If you’re looking for a lighthearted, sweet, laugh till you pee, and super swoony romance, look no further! Because this book was all of those things and so much more. Sara Ney has started her brand new series with a bang by giving us a charming and hilarious romance between two neighbors that you won’t be able to get enough of.

Abort, my head cries.
Touch her, my dick urges.
Everyone calm the fuck down, my brain shouts, irritated.

I love Ney’s brand of sass, but she seriously brought it with these characters. Brooks and Abbott were pure magic on the pages. Their chemistry was instant and potent. I fell hard and fast for the two of them and their adorable road from awkward neighbors to friends to romance.

Abbott Margolis is the female version of myself, and I want to strangle her and stick my dick in her at the same time. Wait—that didn’t come out right, which only makes my mind wander further into the gutter: what kind of kink is Abbott into? Choking? Spanking? Biting? Licking? Bent over from behind?

Brooks has sworn off women after his last relationship ended. Who needs the complication of women when you have the lustrous career you’ve worked your entire life for? You have good friends, a great apartment, what else is missing? Ah yes. A secret society formed between said friends that swears off relationships and comes with stylish smoking jackets. Unfortunately for Brooks, he doesn’t really stand a chance…poor bastard.

Brooks lives in a shiny new apartment, but he’s never met his sassy new neighbor. And when they finally do? Fireworks. Well, kinda. It’s a lot awkward and seriously hilarious. They soon develop a sweet friendship that’s full of incredibly endearing secondary characters. There’s the fiery gran, the evil cat, and the hilarious best friends. All of it combines into one funny, swoony, and charming read that I couldn’t put down for even a second.

I loved Sara’s Douchebags, but I have a feeling I’m going to obsess over her Bachelors even more! Can’t wait for more.

#DGRFave & Excerpt, Review & Giveaway: A Favor for a Favor by @helenahunting

A FAVOR FOR A FAVOR
Series: All In #2
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Sports
Author: Helena Hunting
Release Date: January 28, 2020

From the New York Times bestselling author of Pucked and A Lie for a Lie, a new stand-alone romance about trading favors, battling wills, and winning love.

When I joined Seattle’s NHL expansion team, I thought it was the start of something great. But nothing ever goes the way you expect. Take my introduction to my new neighbor. She came rolling in on the hot mess express at midnight, making a racket while she tried to get into my team captain’s apartment. Did I mention that he’s married to a woman who definitely was not her?

Imagine my surprise when I end up with an injury that has me out of the game for weeks, and she’s the one to offer to help me. I should probably add that she’s not the captain’s mistress. She’s his sexy, pastel-haired younger sister.

So we come up with an arrangement: she rehabs me so that I can get back on the ice sooner, and she can add a professional athlete that isn’t her brother to her client list. Seems simple enough. As long as I can keep my hands to myself and my hormones in check.

AMAZON

“Say you were taking a woman to a formal work function. Would you get her flowers or something?” I’ve gone on my fair share of dates, had a few relationships, but I’ve never been one for hearts and flowers or any of that bull. I’m thinking I might need to do that with Stevie, though, since she’s been screwed over pretty hard.“Is this a date or a favor for a friend?”

“I guess she thinks I’m doing her a favor.” At least that was the impression that I got when I offered to go with her.

“Is that actually what you’re doing?”

“Yes and no.”

“Can you give me a little more to go on?”

“Her ex is going to be there and I don’t want her to go alone.”

“You don’t want her to go alone because you’re worried he’ll be a jerk or he’ll try to take advantage of her?”

“Sure, yeah, that’s part of the reason.”

“Instead of me dragging the information out of you, why don’t you lay it down for me?”

“So, Stevie—”

“Hold up, we’re back to Rook’s little sister?”

“Who else would I be talking about?”

“I thought you said there isn’t anything going on between you, and now you’re taking her to some kind of work function? That’s not a favor; that’s a date. Does Rook know?”

“It’s none of his damn business.”

“I’m not sure he’ll see it that way.”

“Well, he doesn’t have control over her or what she does, or what I do.” I’m agitated now. “She’s not going to that thing alone. I don’t trust that ex of hers, and I don’t want her to end up in a situation she doesn’t like.”

Kingston tips his head to the side. “Dang.”

“What?”

“You like her.”

“Well, yeah, I like her.” What’s not to like? She’s gorgeous, and she’s funny and feisty; her body is rockin’; and she’s fun to be around, super chill, and genuinely selfless.

“Like you actually want to date her, though.”

I shrug, because what am I going to say? The answer to that is yes, I want to date her, but the timing needs to be right. “I don’t want the ex thinking he has another chance.“

“You really love complicated situations, don’t you?”

“They just tend to find me, is all.”

“When’s this event you’re supposed to take her to?” King asks.

“Saturday.”

He frowns. “We get back at noon on Saturday.”

“It’s in the evening.”

“You better hope our flight isn’t delayed.”

I hadn’t considered a delay. The only reason that would happen is if the weather isn’t good. “It doesn’t start until five. I should have plenty of time to get home and throw a suit on.”

Kingston nods and taps restlessly on the edge of the pool. “So would you call this your first date?”

“We hang out all the time.”

“‘Hang out’ meaning what?”

“Other than PT sessions, we watch hockey, eat pizza, stuff like that.”

Kingston blinks several times in rapid succession. “That’s it?”

“I pick her up from work a lot.”

“Have you ever bought her flowers before? Brought her any gifts?”

“I brought her over an aloe plant once. But, like I said, it hasn’t been like that.” I don’t get why he’s so hung up on the flowers.

“Again, please try not to take offense, but are you sure you haven’t inadvertently put yourself in the friend zone?”

“How do I know if I’m in the friend zone?” I haven’t had a lot of friends who are girls. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever had a friend who’s a girl who isn’t related to me. And I only have two female cousins, whom I see a couple of times a year at family functions. They’re significantly younger than me, so mostly I avoid them.

It’s Kingston’s turn to blow out a long breath. “If you put your arm around her and she gets all snuggly but doesn’t try to take it any further, it could mean you’re in the friend zone.”

I don’t know what my expression must be, but the panic I feel inside quite possibly reaches my face. I feel like it should be obvious that I’m interested. A guy doesn’t spend endless hours with a gorgeous woman who combines weird pizza toppings for shits and giggles. But then again, I haven’t attempted to make a move on her since the almost-kiss. And any conversation I’ve tried to have with her about it has been shut down. In fact, she wants to pretend it didn’t happen. I hadn’t considered that this might be because she actually didn’t want it to happen at all. She seemed just as into it as I was. Or maybe I’ve been misreading the whole thing. “If I’m in the friend zone, how the hell do I get out?”

I need you to stop touching me!” It’s stupid because I’m still holding on to her, not the other way around.
“Why are you yelling at me?” she shouts back.
“Because you’re half-undressed in my tub,and I’m a guy, and apparently my dick is a fucking sadist. It honestly feels like my balls are on fire right now. A semi has literally never been this painful.” “Well, close your damn eyes and think about dead things.”

FAVORITE. HELENA HUNTING BOOK. EVER.

How do you even top this? This book was EVERYTHING. The blurb was amazing but it didn’t even begin to do this justice. I loved the first in the series, but this story just owned me. It was enemies to lovers with a slow burn to beat all slow burns. It was full of banter and humor and all of the sizzle. GAH! I seriously can’t right now with all of my feels!!

These two were easily my favorite characters that Helena Hunting has created to date.

Stevie is RJ’s younger sister from A Lie for a Lie. She’s feisty, sharp-witted, and currently trying to move on from walking in on her boyfriend having sex with another woman in their bed. The bed in the apartment they just moved into together. The apartment that they got because of a job they both got and will be working together at. Good times. As she runs away to lick her wounds, looking a hot mess, her brother offers up his condo to her. So of course as fate would have it, what happens when everything that can go wrong does and you’re looking a hot mess trying to get the key to work to your temporary new gigs? You run into your ridiculously good looking but terribly tempered neighbor.

To say that these two get off on the wrong foot would be a serious understatement. While Stevie is dealing with her new normal, she now has to deal with her grumpy new neighbor that happens to assume that she’s his married teammate’s sidepiece. So suffice it to say, he’s not that happy to see her. No matter that the relationship between RJ and Bishop is antagonistic at best.

These two begin an intricate dance of antagonism laced with enough sexual tension to set their condo building on fire. It’s enemies to lovers at it’s very best. With amazing banter, sizzling chemistry, and all of the funny barbs and one-liners. When Bishop gets dangerously hurt during a game, he’s desperate to get back on his feet. And then Stevie offers him her help. She’s a physiotherapist specializing in sports therapy. It’s a great arrangement. A favor for a favor. She’d help get him back on the ice, and he’d give her the chance to work with her first professional athlete and make a name for herself without her brother’s help. Thus begins an even more intricate dance of denying their chemistry as they’re forced in tight quarters and to be around each other a lot more often.

Bishop was such an amazing hero. This man is brooding, and while looks are deceiving, he’s not the typical man-whoring athlete. He takes care of his younger brother and focuses on his career. He has no time for a woman, until one quite literally stumbles into his life.

This was such a delicious story. I don’t even have all of the words to describe how good. The chemistry was incendiary, the humor was on point, and the story was addictive. Pure perfection on pages. I can’t recommend it enough. If you’ve been living under a rock and haven’t read a Helena Hunting book yet, then this is the perfect one to hook you with!

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. Helena writes everything from contemporary romance with all the feels to romantic comedies that will have you laughing until you cry.
 
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Review: Conceal by Ava Harrison

CONCEAL
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Ava Harrison
Release Date: January 11, 2020

From USA Today bestselling author Ava Harrison comes a billionaire romance full of witty banter and a jaw-dropping twist!

I ran.
Escaped the man who wanted to hurt me.

I got in my car and drove.
No destination. No direction. No help.

I hid in the one place I would never be found.
Now in New York with no job, I didn’t know what to do.

Then I met him.
Jaxson Price.
The enigmatic devil who wasn’t only above the law, but played it like a puppet.

He might be the answer to all my problems.
Too bad he’s asking for something in return for his help….
My heart.

He tells me with no words, I’m his. That he owns me with every move of his hips. He tells me he will make sure I’m okay. I feel the truth in it. And I believe him.

This is the kind of story that sneaks up on you slowly. It’s not an in your face, slam bam sort of suspense and romance. It’s a slow burn, with plenty of layers, incredible character development, and a romance that’s as intense as it is satisfying.

I’ve been waiting for Jaxson’s book for what feels like ages. He was the light tempered, easy to laugh, and first to joke sort of man. But beyond the easy smiles and good-natured temperament, you just knew there’s another layer to this man. Conceal shows us those layers, and let me just tell you, they’re deep. There’s so much more to Jax than meets the eye. He’s desperate for his siblings approval. His older brother seems to think he’s more of a party boy that never took running the family business seriously. And while the Price empire isn’t his passion, he’s determined to prove to them he can do it.

But more than that. Max has a heart of gold. This is a man that’s always ready to help those in need, even if he gets nothing out of it. So when he stumbles into a beautiful woman that seems to be running from something. He’s determined to learn her secrets as much as he’s determined to get to her heart. What starts an unlikely friendship soon begins to turn into something so much more.

Willow is on the run, but you don’t know from who or from what. She keeps her secrets well hidden, but her fear is obvious. Admittedly, it took me a bit to get into this story. It’s definitely a slow burn sort of read. It has many different layers that take time to unravel. And while I wasn’t exactly bored, I also wasn’t riveted to the pages. Then when the puzzle pieces began to come together, I was completely sucked in.

This is my second Ava Harrison book and I’m definitely hooked on her brand of story telling.

Review: Riven Knight by Devney Perry

RIVEN KNIGHT
Series: Tin Gypsy #2
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Devney Perry
Release Date: January 21, 2020

Genevieve Daylee didn’t expect to be standing in front of a judge on her twenty-seventh birthday. But ever since her life became entangled with a former motorcycle gang, she’s learned not to expect anything but trouble.

Her mother, a woman she once admired and adored, is gone, leaving behind a trail of secrets and lies. She’s living in a tiny apartment above a garage owned by her brother, a man who loathes her very existence. And the father she met beside her mother’s grave is as much of a stranger as Isaiah Reynolds, the broken man with soulless eyes standing beside her in front of the judge.

Isaiah is her protector from the murderer at large in Clifton Forge. Though he’s more like a riven knight in dented armor than a prince on a white stallion. She knows next to nothing about him, other than he works as a mechanic. As of tonight, he’ll be sharing her bathroom.

And, according to the judge, Isaiah is now her husband.

AMAZON

Isaiah looked in the mirror and saw everlasting broken pieces, but maybe my broken pieces would fit with his. Together, maybe we’d make a whole.

Oh.
Oh wow.
My whole heart right now.
This story owned me from beginning to finish.

I remember a day when I used to devour MC romance. Now? Not so much. It all just kind of started blending into one another. Or it was filled with gratuitous violence and crazy plot twists for shock value. This book? This book reminded me all over again why I loved MC in the first place. But it’s so much more then that too. It’s a heart wrenching, heart pounding, and beautiful romance full of suspense and incredible depth.

She needed to leave this town and fade into a memory. Before I forgot that I didn’t deserve her.

You need to read this series in order. Even though Riven Knight is the story of a different couple, there’s an overarching story arc that continues from book one. This is the story of the mysterious Isaiah and Genevieve, and It. Was. Everything.

Isaiah has been the quiet and unassuming recent addition in the Tin Gypsies garage. The man is an ex-con, and you just know those soulful eyes of his hide some dark demons and pain. Genevieve is Dash’s half-sister that he didn’t know existed from an affair he’s still struggling to forgive his father for. But while Dash is dealing with her, she’s struggling just as much with her new reality. Her mother has been murdered, her killer is still on the lose, and the father she never knew about is suddenly wanting to get to know her. Add into this her sudden marriage to Isaiah for a secret that both of them are keeping close to the vest, and there’s a lot of things happening in this story.

The story is multi-layered and the characters even more so. Both Isaiah and Genevieve had so much depth, every new page revealed a new layer. I loved watching them unknowingly fall for each other during their fake marriage. I loved their road to happiness.

There’s a lot of events happening around The Warriors and Tin Gypsy, and plenty of twists and turns along the way. I don’t remember the last time a book was able to evoke so much emotion and reaction out of me. It gutted me, it broke me, and then it put me right back together again. I cannot wait for the next book. I’m so addicted to this series!

Review: Descent by Natasha Knight

DESCENT
Genre: Dark Romance
Author: Natasha Knight
Release Date: January 20, 2020

Persephone Abbot is in my debt.
Exactly the way I want it.

The sins of the father should not be inherited by the daughter. It’s unfair, I know, but since when has life been fair?

The events that brought us here began on Halloween night more than five years ago in that chapel ruin. I saved her that night. Carried her home through the storm that was the omen warning of what would come.

I didn’t know it then, but I do now.

Her father destroyed something precious. Someone innocent.
I don’t believe in an eye for an eye. I won’t just balance the scales of justice, I’ll tip them so far in my favor his legacy will topple.

I’ll take that which is most precious. His daughter. I’ll own her. Make her mine.

But I’m not the only monster lurking in the dark corners of her world. She’ll sleep in the bed of the beast but I’ll keep her safe. Protect her fiercely.

And maybe I’ll keep her.

Set in the Benedetti Mafia World, Descent is a brand new Standalone Enemies-to-Lovers Romance.

AMAZON

Persephone Abbot belongs to me. She always has. And now, she belongs in my bed, too. And I’ll make sure she stays there no matter what I have to do.

Natasha Knight books are like crack for me. I devour them in one sitting and can never get enough. Her stories are sexy and addictive, and Descent was no exception. It was deliciously sinful, gritty, and with a dark undercurrent that I was immediately hooked on.

Hades.
He was my savior once.
Twice.
Now he’s become my tormentor.
And I don’t ever want him to let me go.

Persephone is reeling in the aftermath of her beloved father tragic accident and trying to hold together the pieces of his crumbling empire. Hayden “Hades” is a boy that she was enraptured by in her past, but is now the man that threatens everything she holds dear. He now holds the key to her father’s company, house, and he’s not above making her beg for it. A deal is struck, Persephone, in exchange for her continuing to live in her family house that Hades now owns, and keep the name of her father’s company that now lies in Hades’s ownership as well.

Hades has a clear axe to grind with the Abbots, and Persephone is a convenient collateral. He’s wanted her for years, and now he intends to have her. Even if he has to buy her to do it. He knows something that Percy doesn’t about her father. But Percy also has secrets of her own. Dark secrets that could unravel everything.

Descent was a page turner full of secrets, plot twists, and sizzling romance. It was sinfully sexy and deliciously dark. There’s plenty of secrets that get unraveled here, but it also left me with quite a few questions. I’m not sure if the plot just wasn’t finished and may be continued in the next book, or if it was meant to be that way. It felt a little…rushed towards the end and there were some gaps that I had hoped would be addressed. But that aside, I enjoyed this story thoroughly. And can’t wait for more in this world!

Review: Twisted Hearts by Cora Reilly

TWISTED HEARTS
Series: The Camorra Chronicles #5
Genre: Dark Romance, Mafia
Author: Cora Reilly
Release Date: January 7, 2020

Savio Falcone has a few non-negotiable rules when it comes to girls.
They need to be hot as f*ck.
Spread their legs without much prompting.
And leave as soon as the fun is over. Preferably minus any bitching or tears.
With his easy-going bad boy attitude, a last name that rules over Las Vegas and a body to die for, girls have always been at Savio’s disposal.
Unfortunately, the hottest girl in Vegas comes with a price Savio isn’t willing to pay. For Savio to get Gemma he’d need to seal the deal and put a ring on her finger. Settling down is out of the question, no matter how hot a piece of ass waits at the altar.
Gemma Bazzoli has had a crush on Savio from the first moment she came face to face with his arrogant smile, but for him she was always his best friend’s annoying little sister—until her hard-earned curves catch even his attention.
But Savio likes it easy, and Gemma is anything but. When she’s promised to another man, Gemma resigns herself to the fact that the man she’s wanted all her life, doesn’t want her badly enough.
Savio has to decide how much work he’s willing to invest, because bending the rules in his usual style might not be enough to get the girl that haunts his wet dreams.
– Can be read as a standalone-

AMAZON

Gemma was the hottest girl in the city and didn’t even realize it. She was the girl I wanted most and couldn’t have.

Ever finish a book and you struggled to feel any which way about it? This was that book for me. I didn’t love it, but I didn’t hate it. It was something of that middle of the road story that I don’t enjoyed reading, but also would never be something I’d come back to either. Does that even make sense? I hope it does, because there’s no better way for me to describe how I felt about Twisted Hearts.

I love mafia romance. I love unconventional love stories with imperfect characters that make their fair share of mistakes. And it just doesn’t get more imperfect than womanizing Savio. Savio and Gemma have known each other since they were kids. Savio was Gemma’s older brother’s friend and a boy that she crushed had on. Her crush was so obvious and at times desperate when she was a teen, that it was almost uncomfortable to read at times, admittedly. Luckily, she doesn’t carry that into adulthood either. Gemma lives in a highly traditional world of old-world mafia family where the women are kept innocent and naive and marriages are a contract and not of love. That doesn’t stop her from hoping beyond hope that Savio will ask for her, since his family is one of the most powerful business alliances her father can make. But Savio is much too concerned with sowing his wild oats with every single available woman out there to even think of marriage. That is, until Gemma is promised to another.

Now I loved the fact that the author stayed true to her character with Savio and didn’t have him turning a complete 180 the second he decides he wants Gemma. He’s not a perfect character and I loved that about him. What didn’t gel for me was the lack of everything else outside of the back and forth he and Gemma go through. The world, the suspense, the story all kind of fell sideways and got lost in the frustrating back and forth of I want you but I can’t have you and I’ll have you but won’t give you all of me. It started off so strong and then all just sort of fizzled for me. I was skimming parts and growing more bored with each page. And while Gemma did grow a backbone in her adulthood, I did also found myself wishing that she made Savio work for it in a different way than she did. Although, I do respect the hell out of her for the way she did handle their relationship.

Ultimately, the romance just didn’t grab me. I didn’t fully buy into it and I just didn’t love Gemma and Savio. They were entertaining, sure, but just not memorable characters for me. Did I enjoy the book? Sure. Most definitely. Was I glued to the pages reading it? Not really. A fun read, but ultimately not an entirely memorable one. But hey, different strokes for different folks right? Give it a read and judge for yourself.

Copyright © 2015 · Dirty Girl Romance

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