Review: The Brazen by Willa Nash

THE BRAZEN
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Calamity, Montana #3
Author: Willa Nash
Release Date: July 15, 2021

From USA Today Bestselling Author Devney Perry, writing as Willa Nash, comes a stranded together, small town romance.

Kerrigan Hale’s personal life is about as exciting as a bucket of tar. With hard work and hustle as her steadfast companions, who needs romance or adventure? Her empire in Calamity, Montana, isn’t going to build itself.

For years, her mentor—and investor—helped make her dreams come true. Until his unexpected death put her fate in his grandson’s hands. A brazen billionaire, he seems intent on ruining Kerrigan’s life.

But if Pierce Sullivan thinks she’ll go down without a fight, he’s sorely mistaken. Pushed to the extreme, she drives to his ritzy mountain lodge to force the arrogant You Can Call Me Mr. Sullivan to hear her out.

No sooner does she arrive than a snowstorm traps her with Pierce. Stranded together for days, she’s in for the battle of her life. Pierce is nearly irresistible by candlelight. Without his suits and fancy cars, he’s almost human.

Except only a fool would let down her guard. And Kerrigan can’t risk her future. Not when she doesn’t know if he’s out to pilfer her dreams . . . or to steal her heart.

AMAZON

Never in my life had I seen an angry woman I wanted to kiss so much.

The second I read about Kerrigan yelling at the sleek business man in The Bluff, I was immediately desperate for their story. I mean, can the set up sound more delicious? Small town romance, enemies to lovers, with a splash of force proximity. Yes, please, and thank you!

Kerrigan is exactly the type of heroine I love to read about. She’s intelligent, fiercely undefended though slightly down on her luck. She took a loan from a mentor to follow her dreams, but then the investor died in a tragic accident and his entirely too handsome for his own good grandson is in town to collect on the debt. Suffice it to say they clash at first sight.

I love this series and I simply adore this author, and while I enjoyed this installment, it wasn’t entirely my favorite. The romance was cute, but just a bit too insta love for my taste. Now, that’s not to say that they get all gooey eyes the second they meet, because let’s be clear, they hate each other, mostly. It takes months for them to get on the same page, but that happens off the pages, and so when they finally do get together, it feels quick. It was still highly satisfying, but I suppose I would have loved more of a burn.

That aside, I really enjoyed this one. Though I’d be lying that Pierce’s sassy assistant Nellie didn’t steal the thunder each time she appeared on the pages. And when we get more insight into her and Pierce’s best friend? GAH. ALL OF THE NEED. But I digress.

While I didn’t love every element of this story, I still enjoyed it quite a bit. It was swoony, emotional, with multi layered characters and plenty of heart. If you love small town romance, this series is simply not to be missed.


Willa Nash is USA Today Bestselling Author Devney Perry’s alter ego, writing contemporary romance stories for Kindle Unlimited. Lover of Swedish Fish, hater of laundry, she lives in Washington State with her husband and two sons. She was born and raised in Montana and has a passion for writing books in the state she calls home.

Devney loves hearing from her readers. Connect with her on social media!

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Review: Exposed by Kristen Callihan

EXPOSED
Series: VIP #4
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Kristen Callihan
Release Date: July 13, 2021

Brenna

There are some people in life who know exactly how to push your buttons. For me, it’s Rye Peterson. We can’t spend more than ten minutes together before we’re at each other’s throats, which makes working together that much harder. Rye is the bassist for Kill John, the biggest rock band in the world, and I am his publicist. It doesn’t help that the man is gorgeous, funny, talented, and…never takes anything seriously. Avoidance is key.

But everything changes when he overhears something he shouldn’t: a confession made in a moment of weakness. Now the man I’ve tried so hard to ignore is offering me the greatest temptation of all—him.

Rye

Brenna James is the one. The one I can’t have. The one I can’t get out of my mind. Believe me, I’ve tried; the woman loathes me. I managed well enough—until I heard her say she’s as lonely as I am. That she needed to be touched, held, satisfied. And I could no longer deny the truth: I wanted to be the one to give her what she craved.

I convinced her that it would just be sex, mutual satisfaction with nothing deeper. But the moment I have her, she becomes my world. I’ve never given her a good reason to trust me before. Now, I’ve got to show Brenna that we’re so much better together than we ever were apart.

Things are going to get messy. But getting messy with Brenna is what I do best.

AMAZON | iBOOKS | NOOK | KOBO 

“I’ve spent my entire adult life either wanting you or wanting to forget you.”

I feel like I’ve been waiting forever for this book. But if there’s one thing that Kristen Callihan does well, is she makes every minute, month, and year of the agonizing wait for our next VIP fix super worth it when she releases the next one. And when I got my grabby little hands on this book, no sleep was had because I had to devour it in one sitting.

I’m good, Bren. I’ll do whatever you want, for as long as you want. I’ll make certain you’re taken care of, and I won’t tell a soul.”
Jesus. I can’t breathe. “So selfless,” I murmur. “And what do you get out of all of this?”
“You.” His fingers stroke my braid. “I get you.”

God. Brenna and Rye. These two just made my cold black heart feel all warm and fuzzy. They’ve spent years in an antagonizing back and forth of hate lust and forced proximity. Brenna is Killian’s cousin and Kill John’s publicist and Rye is the bassist and Killian’s best friend. Until one conversation that Rye overhears changes everything.

My power is in maintaining the illusion that nothing can get to me, and I accept that as part of doing business. But some days? Some days, I want to crumble. I want…comfort, touch, release.

Brenna is a power woman that always put her career first. But she can’t help but feel like something is missing. And when she spills to her friend what it is and Rye overhears? Well let’s just say he volunteers as tribute.

While Brenna is all hard edges and fearful avoidance, Rye is the sexy softhearted one that is willing to put it all on the line for her. I loved this man so hard. SO HARD. I loved that they’ve know each other for so long, but only start to get to know each other over the course of their arrangement. Seeing how they misinterpreted things about each other through the years was almost painful, if they didn’t fully talk it out when the subject came out. I loved watching them grow closer together. I loved their fiery passion. And I absolutely loved the tight bond of the band and their friendships and relationships. I live for cameos from Scottie, what can I say?

The story is told in dual POVs and I couldn’t get enough. I also loved the twist on the romantic conclusion. I loved seeing Brenna’s hard edges soften. And did I mention that I loved my bearded, dirty talking, and uber sweet bassist? Because GAH.

Control has always been mine, no matter the partner, no matter the situation. Rye is another story. Hell, he’s a whole other genre. I can’t control Rye. I can’t control my feelings when I’m with him. I’m on a Tilt-a-Whirl in the dark, terrified the harness might snap.

I did wish we got a little more fleshing out of Rye’s story. While Brenna got the focus here, which I get, we did spend a good chunk of the story on Rye’s issue, and I would have loved more on that.

But as it was, I still devoured this book. It was sexy, entertaining, and oh so satisfying. I’m already desperate for my next fix of VIP with Whip’s story.

Kristen Callihan is an author because there’s nothing else she’d rather be. She has written New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestsellers. Her novels have garnered starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Library Journal. Her debut book, Firelight, received RT Magazine’s Seal of Excellence and was named a best book of the year by Library Journal, Best Book of Spring 2012 by Publishers Weekly, and Best Romance Book of 2012 by ALA RUSA. When she’s not writing, she’s reading.

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#DGRFave Review & Excerpt: It Happened One Summer by Tessa Bailey

IT HAPPENED ONE SUMMER
Series: It Happened One Summer #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Tessa Bailey
Release Date: July 13, 2021

Tessa Bailey is back with a Schitt’s Creek-inspired rom-com about a Hollywood “It Girl” who is cut off from her wealthy family and exiled to a small Pacific Northwest beach town… where she butts heads with a surly, sexy local who thinks she doesn’t belong. 

Piper Bellinger is fashionable, influential, and her reputation as a wild child means the paparazzi are constantly on her heels. When too much champagne and an out-of-control rooftop party lands Piper in the slammer, her stepfather decides enough is enough. So he cuts her off, and sends Piper and her sister to learn some responsibility running their late father’s dive bar… in Washington.

Piper hasn’t even been in Westport for five minutes when she meets big, bearded sea captain Brendan, who thinks she won’t last a week outside of Beverly Hills. So what if Piper can’t do math, and the idea of sleeping in a shabby apartment with bunk beds gives her hives. How bad could it really be? She’s determined to show her stepfather—and the hot, grumpy local—that she’s more than a pretty face.

Except it’s a small town and everywhere she turns, she bumps into Brendan. The fun-loving socialite and the gruff fisherman are polar opposites, but there’s an undeniable attraction simmering between them. Piper doesn’t want any distractions, especially feelings for a man who sails off into the sunset for weeks at a time. Yet as she reconnects with her past and begins to feel at home in Westport, Piper starts to wonder if the cold, glamorous life she knew is what she truly wants. LA is calling her name, but Brendan—and this town full of memories—may have already caught her heart.

AMAZON

Brendan Taggart was the first Westport resident to spot the women.He heard a car door slam out by the curb and slowly turned on the barrel that passed as a seat in No Name. His bottle of beer paused halfway to his mouth, the loud storytelling and music filling the bar fading away.

Through the grubby window, Brendan watched the pair exit on opposite sides of a taxi and immediately wrote them off as clueless tourists who obviously had the wrong address.

That is, until they started hauling suitcases out of the trunk. Seven, to be exact.

He grunted. Sipped his beer.

They were a ways off the beaten path. There wasn’t an inn for several blocks. On top of misjudging their destination, they were dressed for the beach at night, during a late-summer rain, no umbrella to speak of—and visibly confounded by their surroundings.

It was the one in the floppy hat who caught his eye right away, purely because she looked the most ridiculous, a lipstick-shaped purse dangling from her forearm, wrists limp and drawn up to her shoulders, as if she was afraid to touch something. She tilted her head back and gazed up at the building and laughed. And that laugh turned into what looked like a sob, though he couldn’t hear it through the music and pane of glass.

As soon as Brendan noticed the way the rain was molding the dress to Floppy Hat’s tits, he glanced away quickly, going back to what he’d been doing before. Pretending to be interested in Randy’s overboard story, even though he’d heard it eighty goddamn times.

“The sea was boiling that day,” Randy said, in a voice equivalent to scrap metal being crushed. “We’d already hit our quota and then some, thanks to the captain over here.” He saluted Brendan with his frothy pint. “And there I was, on a deck slipperier than a duck’s ass, picturing the bathtub full of cash I’d be swimming in when we got home. We’re hauling in the final pot, and there it was, the biggest crab in the damn sea, the motherfucking grandpappy of all crabs, and he tells me with his beady little eyes that he ain’t going down without a fight. Noooo, sir.”

Randy propped a leg up on the stool he’d been sitting on earlier, his craggy features arranged for maximum drama. He’d been working on Brendan’s boat longer than Brendan had been captaining it. Had seen more seasons than most of the crew combined. At the end of each one, he threw himself a retirement party. And then he showed up for the next season like clockwork, having spent every last dime of last year’s take.

“When I tell you that sucker wrapped a leg around the arm of my slicker, right through the pot, the mesh, all of it, I’m not lying. He was hell-bent for leather. Time froze, ladies and gentlemen. The captain is yelling at me to haul in the pot, but hear me now, I was bamboozled. That crab put a spell on me—I’m telling you. And that’s when the wave hit, conjured by the crab himself. Nobody saw it coming, and just like that, I was tossed into the drink.”

The man who was like a grandfather to Brendan took a pause to drain half his beer.

“When they pulled me in . . .” He exhaled. “That crab was nowhere to be found.”

The two people in the crowded bar who hadn’t already heard the legend laughed and applauded—and that was the moment Floppy Hat and the other one decided to make their entrance. Within seconds, it was quiet enough to hear a pin drop, and that didn’t surprise Brendan one bit. Westport was a tourist stop to be sure, but they didn’t get a lot of outsiders stumbling into No Name. It was an establishment that couldn’t be found on Yelp.

Mainly because it was illegal.

But it wasn’t only the shock of non-locals walking in and disrupting their Sunday-night bullshit session. No, it was the way they looked. Especially Floppy Hat, who walked in first, hitting the easy energy of the room with shock paddles. In her short, loose dress and sandals that wrapped around her calves, she could have stepped out of the pages of a fashion magazine for all those . . . tight lines and smooth curves.

Brendan could be objective about that.

His brain could point out an attractive woman without him caring one way or the other.

He set his beer down on the windowsill and crossed his arms, feeling a flash of annoyance at everyone’s stupefied expressions. Randy had rolled out the red carpet in the form of his tongue lolling out of his mouth, and the rest of the men were mentally preparing marriage proposals, by the look of it.

“Little help with the luggage, Pipes?” called the second girl from the entrance, where she’d propped open the door with a hip, struggling under the weight of a suitcase.

“Oh!” Floppy Hat whirled around, pink climbing the sides of her face—and hell, that was some face. No denying it, now that there wasn’t a dirty windowpane distorting it. Those were the kind of baby blues that made men sign their life away, to say nothing of that wide, stubborn upper lip. The combination rendered her guileless and seductive at the same time, and that was trouble Brendan wanted no part of. “Sorry, Hanns.” She winced. “I’ll go get the rest—”

“I’ll get them,” at least nine men said at once, tripping over themselves to reach the door. One of them took the suitcase from Floppy Hat’s companion, while several others lunged into the rain, getting stuck side by side in the doorway. Half of those jackasses were on Brendan’s crew, and he almost disowned them right then and there. 

Within seconds—although not without some familiar bickering—all seven suitcases were piled in the middle of the bar, everyone standing around them expectantly. “What gentlemen! So polite and welcoming,” Floppy Hat crooned, hugging her bizarre handbag to her chest. “Thank you!”

“Yes, thanks,” said the second girl quietly, drying the rain off her face with the sleeve of a UCLA sweatshirt. Los Angeles. Of course. “Uh, Pipes?” She turned in a circle, taking in their surroundings. “Are you sure this is the right place?”

In response to her friend’s question, she seemed to notice where she was standing for the first time. Those eyes grew even bigger as she catalogued the interior of No Name and the people occupying it. Brendan knew what she was seeing, and already he resented the way she recoiled at the dust on the mismatched seats, the broken floorboards, the ancient fishing nets hanging from the rafters. The disappointment in the downturned corners of her mouth spoke volumes. Not good enough for you, baby? There’s the door.

With prim movements, Pipes—keeper of ridiculous names and purses—snapped the handbag open and drew out a jewel-crusted phone, tapping the screen with a square red nail. “Is this . . . sixty-two North Forrest Street?”

A chorus of yeses greeted the strangled question.

“Then . . .” She turned to her friend, chest expanding on quick breaths. “Yes.”

“Oh,” responded UCLA, before she cleared her throat, pasting a tense smile on a face that was pretty in a much subtler way than Pipes’s. “Um . . . sorry about the awkward entrance. We didn’t know anyone was going to be here.” She shifted her weight in boots that wouldn’t be good for anything but sitting down. “I’m Hannah Bellinger. This is my sister, Piper.”

Piper. Not Pipes.

Not that it was much of an improvement.

The floppy hat came off, and Piper shook out her hair, as if they were in the middle of a photo shoot. She gave everyone a sheepish smile. “We own this place. Isn’t that crazy?”

If Brendan thought their entrance had produced silence, it was nothing compared to this.

Owned this place?

From IT HAPPENED ONE SUMMER by Tessa Bailey, published by Avon Books. Copyright © 2021 by Tessa Bailey. Reprinted courtesy of HarperCollinsPublishers.

He was a set-in-his-ways fisherman. She was a rich, adventurous socialite.

Y’all. I’m going to make a pretty extreme statement here and you may want to sit down for it. But this? This was, hands down, my favorite Tessa Bailey book to date. I’m on bookish cloud nine. I felt like I was floating just reading it. And the goofy grin on my face for the entire book? Couldn’t help it! I’m in love and his name is Brendan Taggart.
This book had everything; humor, steam, a slow burn, a small town setting, a quirky socialite, and a grumpy bear…err…fisherman.

It won’t let me just use my own name as my username.”
“Yeah, probably because about nine hundred Brendan Taggarts joined before you.”
“So what should I use?”
“CaptainCutie69,” Fox spat out.
“IGotCrabs4U,” Deke supplied.
“SlipperyWhenWet.” Brendan stared.
“You’re all fired. Go home.”

This story reminded me a little of It Had to Be You but in a totally unique way. Maybe it was just the feels that it brought out, but man, I just died.

Piper is a type of heroine that could easily be seen as a fluff, unless Tessa writes her. She’s a spoiled socialite who has never known hard work or trouble beyond no good parties around on the weekend. So when her stepfather finally has enough of her antics and inability to take anything serious, her and her sister find themselves in a small town running their late fathers dive bar in the middle of a fishing town. Suffice it to say they’re ill equipped for the task, but in the most hilarious of ways.

Piper followed, looking down at him from the top of the stairs. “Are we friends, Brendan?”
“No,” he called back, without missing a beat.
Her mouth hung open, a laugh huffing out of her as she closed the door. Hannah sat up and asked, “What the hell is going on there?”
Slowly, she shook her head. “I have no freaking idea.”

No one has ran the bar for years since the passing of their father. And the town just kind of took it as their own. So when Brendan meets who he assumes is an air headed socialite, suffice it to say they get off on the right foot. Add into the fact that no one knew of the long lost daughters and they do anything but fit in with the locals and well, it’s a catastrophe waiting to happen. But god was it good!

The slow burn of this romance was EVERYTHING. And I really mean everything. I loved watching Piper grow into her own and I loved watching Brendan fall for her. She was such a sweet, quirky, and endearing character. And the grumpy and broody fisherman captain? I LIVED FOR HIM.

Going to fuck the word ‘friend’ right out of your beautiful mouth. You’ll forget how to say anything but my name. Real quick, honey.”

I loved this book beyond words and beyond reason. It was funny, swoony, and with a sizzle of Tessa’s signature dirty talk and I was so here for it. If there’s one book you add to your TBR this summer, make it this one. The perfect beach read is here and I can’t recommend it enough. Now if Tessa can just write Hannah and Fox’s book faster because the level of need that I have for that one is UNREASONABLE.

 

Review: Carnal Urges by J.T. Geissinger

CARNAL URGES
Series: Queens & Monsters #2
Genre: Contemporary, Erotic Romance, Suspense
Author: J.T. Geissinger
Release Date: June 30, 2021

Carnal (adjective):
1) Relating to the pleasures of the body
2) Given to sensual indulgence
3) The man who kidnapped me

The devil has blue eyes, an Irish accent, and a hatred for me that runs deep.

He blames me for starting a war.
Consorting with his enemies.
Getting his men killed.

Though I’m innocent on all charges, he wants his pound of flesh.
With an eye on revenge, he makes me his captive.

But as we’ll both soon discover, there are more powerful urges than that for revenge.

 

When the devil meets his match but she’s his sworn enemy, that’s when the real war begins.

Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

AMAZON 

In a life full of unforgivable sins, sleeping with the enemy would be the absolute worst.

In case you were wondering, above is actual footage of me reading this book. BECAUSE OH MY HOLY BOOK CRACK. This was DELICIOUS.

Men say they love a strong woman, right up until they meet one.

The second Sloane appeared on the pages of Ruthless Creatures, I was instantly captivated. There’s just something about a strong, smart, fiercely independent woman that owns her sexuality and doesn’t feel bad about being one and done with men while leaving them all panting in her wake. And what I mean by that, is this woman was instantly my spirit animal. I loved her as a secondary character but I was nervous about her being the main one. Because it’s so easy to take a character like this and overdo it. Make her too much. But somehow, she was even better than I ever hoped.

I’m not the girl who gets butterflies. I’m not the girl who swoons or begs. I’m the one who moves on before things get complicated, who keeps moving on relentlessly without looking back, like a shark that has to keep swimming forward its whole life or it will die. I’m the one who doesn’t fall. Who doesn’t feel. Who doesn’t get attached.

And you may also remember Declan from Cruel Paradise. And if you haven’t read that series, you haven’t lived. Just sayin’. But I digress. Declan was the right hand man for the Irish mafia, and suddenly finds himself at the head of it in this book. He’s also the mortal enemy of Kage from Ruthless Creatures, who happens to be Sloane’s bestie’s new man. Complication, they has it. But I digress again.

This was enemies to lovers GOLD. Declan kidnaps Sloane and keeps her captive, only it doesn’t go as he planned considering the woman is opinionated, with a razor sharp tongue, and completely fearless. She challenges him at every turn and turns him on at every corner. Their banter was the thing mu bookish dreams were made of.

I’m probably going to die with only you for company. Can you blame me for being upset?” His eyes are narrowed, doubtful, arctic blue.
I throw my hands in the air. “I’m not invincible!”
“So that deal you made with the devil for the power to kill with run-on sentences didn’t include immortality?”

Y’all. When I tell you I lived for this banter, words can’t describe the level of goofy smile I had on my face reading it.

Now I liked book one, but also wanted more story and more tension and (whispers shamefully) less sex. What? Yes it happens even to me. But I digress again. This gave me the tension I had so needed. The buildup was fiery and delicious. And when these two finally collide? HOLY MOTHER!!!!! What’s the best thing you can imagine for a fiercely independent woman? Give her an uber dominant alpha with a penchant for kink. YES PLEASE.
I’ll bind you and blindfold you, probably gag you with my tie, too. And I’ll make you come, over and over. I’ll make you glad you let yourself submit. Are you ready?”


The steam, people! THE STEAM. I died for it. I loved Sloane slowly work her quirky charm on Declan almost as much as I loved his dominant side completely own her in bed.

In this moment, all I want is to let him run me over. To let him break me, savage me, tear me apart.

Carnal Urges was action packed, quick paced, filled with humor, banter to die for, and steam hot enough to set fire to your reader. When I tell you I died for this book, I mean I DIED FOR THIS BOOK. This was JT Geissinger in all of her amazing glory and I was so here for it. And the twist at the end? DIE. I DIE. Seriously. I need the next book like yesterday.

If you love a sizzling hot mafia romance with an uber alpha to die for and a sassy and strong willed heroine to challenge him at every turn, welcome to your next addiction. This book was all of the things! I cannot recommend it enough.

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

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Review: Heartless by Gena Showalter

HEARTLESS
Series:
Immortal Enemies #1
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Author: Gena Showalter
Release Date: June 29, 2021

Vengeance is irresistible…

Kaysar the Unhinged One, fae King of Midnight, can drive anyone to madness with his song. A ruthless warrior forged in hate, he lives to force his enemies to their knees.

He will stop at nothing to succeed—even abduct and seduce his foe’s beloved bride, ensuring his own child one day sits on the male’s throne.

Except, his prize escapes to the mortal realm before the first kiss, her heart transplanted into a mortal beauty with dangerous secrets…

Chantel “Cookie” Bardot is a professional gamer girl great at trash talking, bad at peopling. After a long awaited surgery, she begins to morph into a powerful fae princess.

Catapulted into a strange land ruled by a cruel but seductive villain, she must battle flesh and blood monsters and navigate royal intrigues.

But the true danger is Kaysar, whose every wicked touch tempts her beyond reason. Should she run…or descend into the darkness with him?

AMAZON 

He struck her as a man who murdered without hesitation, breaking a sweat or regretting his actions.

As someone who’s read Gena’s entire backlist, it’s safe for me to say that this woman can write the alphabet on a sheet of toilet paper and I’d read it. So while I’ve been ravenous for Hades’s book and more of her LoTu, I will still jump at everything else she writes. And a brand new series that’s titled Immortal Enemies? Yeah you bet your patootie I’ll be all over it. No one writes enemies to lovers banter quite like Showalter. Then you add into it her sassy, sharp tongued, and bad@ss heroines meet tortured and uber protective heroes and I’m putty. PUTTY I TELLS YA.

Maybe you should let me go now?” she said. She needed a moment to think without him nearby.
Another chuckle. “Does my proximity bother you, sweetling?”
“Yes,” she burst out. “And I’d prefer an endearment like Machete or Chops. Now be a good boy, and let me go.”

The one thing I’ve come to appreciate about Gena’s stories, is the world building. We get a new world with fae, goblins, centaurs, and seers and I was so here for it. None of it felt like a data dump. All of it felt incredibly vivid, enchanting, and completely addictive.

Kaysar the Unhinged One is certainly appropriately known through the kingdom. The man is practically deranged in his need for revenge. The only thing that drives him is bringing all of the pain and suffering to his enemies who stole everything precious from him when he was just a small boy.

Chantel “Cookie” Bardot is a quirky gamer with a best friend who’s in her 60s and a cat to keep her company. She also has a bad heart and is looking at certain death unless she gets a heart transplant. Now I won’t give you a summary here because you can get everything you need from the blurb. But the second Cookie gets thrust into the world of Kaysar, I was totally and completely invested.

The tension and the relationship building between these two was utterly delicious. Their banter is hilarious and with a vein of sexual tension that’s so good, that by the time they finally give into you, you feel like you may go into flames yourself. There’s nothing better than that build up and man, I loved it so much here. Cookie is a bit of a nut herself. A gamer, she’s a bloodthirsty little thing herself. And when she gets a taste for battle in her new world, she finds she rather likes it. I couldn’t picture a better half for Kaysar’s particular brand of crazy. I loved watching him falling for her in spite of himself and I loved watching Cookie come into her own. I was afraid that having Lulundria’s heart and some of her memories may eventually morph her into someone else, but really it just gave her a boost.

There’s so much build up here that I can’t wait to read next with some secondary characters. Like a certain Frostline prince that lost his loved bride only to lose her all over again when her heart goes into the body of a woman that falls for his mortal enemy. GAH. How epic does that sound? Because NEED.

I will never complain about a new series from the queen of PNR. So even though I’m pretty sure I would go crazy until I get Hades’s book soon, this new series certainly helps. An entire series based on the enemies to lovers vibes? YES MA’AM! BRING IT I say.

Review: Bound To Her Fake Fiancé Boss by Hayson Manning

BOUND TO HER FAKE FIANCE BOSS
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Bound #2
Author: Hayson Manning
Release Date: February 28, 2021

Faking it never felt so real…

I’m a happy workaholic. She’s my sassy assistant. When I need a fake fiancée, she’s the perfect choice. What could go wrong in ten days…

I don’t do ‘I-do.’ Don’t believe in happy-ever-after. But to convince my grandmother I’m about to take the plunge, I must bring a “fiancée” to Montana. My heart might not be open, but my checkbook is. I agree to pay my sexy assistant, Asia Brown, to pose as my bride-to-be. She’s a level-headed professional who will get the job done. Or so I thought. When she openly flaunts my no-public-displays-of-affection rule, my grandmother’s not the only one convinced it’s the real deal. Every part of me from the neck down is totally sold.

When my broody billionaire boss offers me a six-figure bonus to pretend we’re engaged, I can’t refuse the opportunity to secure the funds to get my sister into rehab. And if there’s a little something left over to help me open my own dress shop, it’s a win-win. Determined to charm the grump out of him, I’m caught off-guard by how different Jason is away from spreadsheets and profit margins. And how real it feels when I’m in his arms.

When the stakes ramp up, can two opposites take a chance on love, or is faking it the only reality they have?

AMAZON 

I’m falling for my bossy, broody boss. What the hell have I done and become?

Office romance? CHECK
Grumpy, billionaire hero with a tortured past not looking for love? CHECK
Sassy, quirky heroine not afraid to speak her mind? CHECK
A swoon, sexy, feel good romance that had me turning the pages from beginning to end? CHECK AND CHECK

Now I’ll be the first to admit, reading the above summary makes the story sound a bit cliche, right? WRONG. You know when you have a story that can be like every other in the genre, but then there’s just a little magic to it that makes it different? Yep. This had it in spades. There was just this sizzle and spice to this that had me glued to the pages.

Jason Johnson is stone cold. He runs his business with an iron fist and doesn’t stop to count the casualties. Romance is the last thing he needs and his women never seem to make it past the 3 week mark with him even when they try.

Asia is his quirky assistant that somehow has made it where others have not and been tolerating his grumpy @ss. Though the paycheck certainly helps the crazy hours and lack of social life. She needs every dime she makes to get something her heart yearns for.

Jason doesn’t believe in love but needs to sell it to his grandmother who will sell his childhood home unless she sees him in a happy relationship. So what’s a man to do? Fake it and buy your secretary, of course.

What I absolutely loved about this story is the opposites attract vibe. Asia is vivacious and lovely and caring to Jason’s cold, unfeeling and brooding. Now in stories with a tortured hero who doesn’t believe in love, I really have to buy the why. And Jason’s past certainly did it. I understood why he was the way he was. I also loved watching him slowly but surely and unwittingly fall for his beautiful assistant.

The romance was sizzling and the story was addictive. And the grovel at the end? DELICIOUS!

If you’re looking for a marriage of convenience trope that will put a smile on your face from page one and keep it on there until the last one, READ THIS. And the set up for the rest of the brotherhood? GAH! SO GOOD. I love the friendship these men have and kept through the years that are full of dark secrets and pain. I NEED MORE!!

Review: Tryst Six Venom by Penelope Douglas

TRYST SIX VENOM
Genre:
 FF, Bully Romance
Author: Penelope Douglas
Release Date: June 3, 2021

𝑨𝒘𝒂𝒚 𝒈𝒂𝒎𝒆𝒔, 𝒃𝒂𝒄𝒌 𝒔𝒆𝒂𝒕𝒔, 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒍𝒐𝒄𝒌𝒆𝒓 𝒓𝒐𝒐𝒎 𝒂𝒇𝒕𝒆𝒓 𝒉𝒐𝒖𝒓𝒔… 𝑮𝒆𝒕 𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒅𝒚!

𝘾𝙇𝘼𝙔

Marymount girls are good girls. We’re chaste, we’re untouched, and even if we weren’t, no one would know, because we keep our mouths shut.

Not that I have anything to share anyway. I never let guys go too far. I’m behaved.

Beautiful, smart, talented, popular, my skirt’s always pressed, and I never have a hair out of place. I own the hallways, walking tall on Monday and dropping to my knees like the good Catholic girl I am on Sunday.

That’s me. Always in control.

Or so they think. The truth is that it’s easy for me to resist them, because what I truly want, they can never be. Something soft and smooth. Someone dangerous and wild.

Unfortunately, what I want I have to hide. In the locker room after hours. In the bathroom stall between classes. In the showers after practice. 𝑀𝑦 ℎ𝑒𝑎𝑑 𝑠𝑤𝑖𝑚𝑚𝑖𝑛𝑔. 𝑀𝑦 ℎ𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑢𝑝 ℎ𝑒𝑟 𝑠𝑘𝑖𝑟𝑡.

For me, life is a web of secrets. No one can find out mine.

𝙊𝙇𝙄𝙑𝙄𝘼

I cross the tracks every day for one reason—to graduate from this school and get into the Ivy League. I’m not ashamed of where I come from, my family, or how everyone at Marymount thinks my skirts are too short and my lipstick is too red.

Clay Collins and her friends have always turned up their noses at me. The witch with her beautiful skin, clean shoes, and rich parents who torments me daily and thinks I won’t fight back.

At least not until I get her alone and find out she’s hiding so much more than just what’s underneath those pretty clothes.

The princess thinks I’ll scratch her itch. She thinks she’s still pure as long as it’s not a guy touching her.

I told her to stay on her side of town. I told her not to cross the tracks.

But one night, she did. And when I’m done with her, she’ll never be pure again.

*TRYST SIX VENOM is a standalone, new adult, bully romance suitable for readers 18+. It will release directly into Kindle Unlimited!

AMAZON

I hate Olivia Jaeger. I f*cking hate her, and I’d happily never love anything if I could hate her my whole life. My eyes pool with tears, and I don’t know why.

The author that first introduced me to bully romance now coming out with an FF bully romance? You best believe I’d be all over that. I was downright salivating for this book for moooooonths. Desperately awaiting the release. So when it landed on my kindle, I must have jumped on it quicker than you can say “mine”. True story.

When you’re in the eye of the storm, the only way out is through.

A prestigious high school for the rich and entitled. A girl from the wrong side of the tracks. And the spoiled girl who seems to have everything she wants, except the one thing that alludes her. I was instantly hooked on the story.

Clay is a bully that you can’t help but love. She’s tortured, angry, and no matter how much venom she spits, you see the pain it’s rooted in. She’s the popular girl in the school. The one who seems to have everything at her fingertips. The captain of the lacrosse team and the girl all guys want and all girls want to be.

Olivia “Liv” Jaeggar is her antithesis. She’s the black sheep of the school and the brunt of everyone’s jokes. She doesn’t hide herself and makes no apologies. The only girl amongst her 5 brothers, she’s a bit of a bad girl with an aura of I don’t give a d@mn. I loved her. She’s venomous in her own right. She takes everything Clay has to give and dishes it right back. But where Clay hasn’t quite figured out who she is, Liv knows it and wears it openly.

I loved the fact that Pen also focused on some very real pieces of bullying and I appreciated this story so much more for it.

As for the romance, I lived for it. It’s a slow burn, full of angst and emotion. It had so much depth that I found myself happily drowning in it. And the epilogue? *chefs kiss* Perfection.

But even though I loved this book, I’m completely unsatisfied too. Why? Because I need more. I need a book for each and every single one of Liv’s bothers. Particularly Macon and Dallas. Like I would DIE for their book. I need it BAD.

Aside from that, I’m in book heaven. This book hit every single spot. I loved every page of it.

Review: Here With Me by Samantha Young

HERE WITH ME
Series: Adair Family #1
Genre: Romantic Suspense, Contemporary Romance
Author: Samantha Young
Release Date: May 11, 2021

Settled in the tranquil remoteness of the Scottish Highlands, Ardnoch Estate caters to the rich and famous. It is as unattainable and as mysterious as its owner –ex-Hollywood leading man Lachlan Adair–and it’s poised on the edge of a dark scandal.

After narrowly escaping death, police officer Robyn Penhaligon leaves behind her life in Boston in search of some answers. Starting with Mac Galbraith, the Scottish father who abandoned her to pursue his career in private security. To re-connect with Mac, Robyn will finally meet a man she’s long resented. Lachlan Adair. Hostility instantly brews between Robyn and Lachlan. She thinks the head of the Adair family is high-handed and self-important. And finding closure with Mac is proving more difficult than she ever imagined. Robyn would sooner leave Ardnoch, but when she discovers Mac is embroiled in a threat against the Adairs and the exclusive members of the estate, she finds she’s not yet ready to give up on her father.

Determined to ensure Mac’s safety, Robyn investigates the disturbing crimes at Ardnoch, forcing her and Lachlan to spend time together. Soon it becomes clear a searing attraction exists beneath their animosity, and temptation leads them down a perilous path.
While they discover they are connected by something far more addictive than passion, Lachlan cannot let go of his grip on a painful past: a past that will destroy his future … if the insidious presence of an enemy lurking in the shadows of Ardnoch doesn’t do the job first.

AMAZON | iBOOKS | NOOK | KOBO

She’d lit up under his hands. He tasted her fire on his tongue and, goddamn, it ignited something inside him.

I was immediately sucked into this story from the very first chapter. A fiery, tough as nails former Boston cop meet broody and reclusive former Hollywood star? Sign me right up!

If there’s one thing that I love when Samantha writes, it’s an enemies to lovers romance. There’s just something so sizzling ingrained into the chemistry of her characters that I’ll never get enough of.

Robyn was a heroine that I loved from the very first page. Hard not to love a fierce heroine that isn’t afraid to speak her mind. After a nigh on the job nearly costs her her life, she finds herself looking for answers. And for her, a log of her unanswered questions lie with her estranged Scottish father; a man who left her when she was just a little girl for an illustrious career protecting a Hollywood star.

Robyn finds herself in the remote Scottish Highlands, at Ardnoch Estate, going head to head with the reclusive owner, Lachlan and also in the center of an escalating stalker case.

If you love a good romantic suspense, this one brought the mystery and action in spades. Between the escalating hate lust going on with Robyn and Lachlan, and the whodunit mystery of the stalker case, I found myself incapable of putting the book down. The romance is a slow burn, a bit tamer on the steam but no less satisfying. What kept me absolutely riveted to the pages were all of the secondary characters, particularly the Adairs. I can already tell that I’m going to be hooked on this series because the set up for each of them is utterly delicious.

I love a good suspense when I can’t see the ending coming and this one definitely caught me unaware. I never saw any of it coming and it heightened the enjoyment that much more.

Lachlan definitely took his sweet time to extricate his head from his nether region, but man did I love to hate his broody, a-holish side. I particularly loved to see Robyn constantly put him in his place. I’m so excited to have another series to obsess over from one of my favorites. Hopefully we get Mac’s story next.

Samantha is the New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of over forty books, several of which have been nominated for Goodreads Choice Awards. She writes adult contemporary and paranormal romance, YA urban fantasy and YA contemporary fiction. Her books have been published in 28 languages in 30 countries. She resides in Scotland.

For more information visit http://authorsamanthayoung.com

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Review: The Warlord by Gena Showalter

THE WARLORD
Series: Rise of the Warlords #1
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Author: Gena Showalter
Release Date: April  20,  2021

New York Times bestselling author Gena Showalter begins a dark, sexy new series—Rise of the Warlords—with a fan-favorite character from her beloved Lords of the Underworld series, Taliyah Skyhawk. The ice maiden faces off with her greatest enemy, a villain brutal beyond imagining.

For centuries, Taliyah Skyhawk has prepared to become Harpy General, leader of the deadliest female army in existence. One of the requirements? Remain a virgin. But, for a chance to save her people, she must wed the fearless leader of the Astra Planeta, Alaroc Phaethon.

The time has come for Roc to sacrifice another virgin bride to his god. There has never been a woman alluring enough to tempt him from his path. No warrioress powerful enough to overcome his incredible strength. No enchantress desirable enough to make him burn beyond reason. Until now.

With the clock ticking, war between husband and wife ignites. Except Taliyah never expected the merciless king to challenge the future she once envisioned. She certainly never anticipated the thrill of their battles turning into games… The problem is, only one spouse can survive.

Love is a battlefield in Showalter’s The Warlord.

AMAZON

I’ve never been a hero. I’ve never wanted to be. I make a better villain.

Gena Showalter: announces new series
Me:

*giggles in giddy fangirl*

When I saw the new series announcement from Gena, I’m pretty sure I spent hours stalking any and all information on it. Then I spent months, and I mean MONTHS, stalking for the book. The level of anticipation was high, people!

The Warlord is a brand new book in Gena’s Rise of The Warlords series but it’s also an overarching series from her Lords of The Underworld. If you recall the harpy sisters from that The Darkest Surrender? We get Taliyah Skyhawk’s story in this one and man was it delicious.

If there’s one thing that I love about Gena’s books, it’s her fierce heroines. And Taya was all of those things and more. With a bloodline that’s a deadly secret, Taliyah grew up with one goal in life; becoming Harpy General. Leading a deadly army of female harpies is all she wants and she’ll sacrifice anything, including staying a virgin to do it. I know, right?! Plot twist.

Roc is the deadly leader of the Astra Planeta, a fierce army of ancient warriors feared in every realm. His task? To sacrifice a virgin bride to ensure his army receives a mystical blessing. If he fails, they’re cursed to utter defeat for 500 years. And Roc would do anything for his warriors.

First of all, the antagonism and hate lust between these two? *chefs kiss* SO GOOD. Roc is all broody, grumpy, and warlordy. And Taya is sassy, hilarious, and always game to press every button he has and a few he didn’t even know he has. And this reader? Gobbled it right up.

I should probably apologize for my tardiness, and I will, just as soon as I’m sorry. As your men are proving with their nineinch salutes, I’m totally worth the wait. Well, he’s giving me ten.” She winked at Silver. “Bravo, sir.”

As always the world building was enticing, vivid, and full of new characters I can’t wait to read more about. Including a cameo by my beloved Hades. Well not really a cameo, more of a mention. But I’ll take any morsel when it coms to this man. But I digress again.

I loved this book and this new slew of warrior characters. Move over lords, there’s new tortured and brooding warlords. And I’m not one to pick favorites here, but I’m saying I’m dying for the next book! If this one is anything to judge the series by, we’re in for one heck of a ride and I’m already braced for it.

If you’re looking for a steamy PNR with plenty of chemistry, banter, and all of the action with incredible characters that you won’t be able to get enough of, READ THIS.

Review: Distorted by Nyla K

DISTORTED
Series: Alabaster Penitentiary #1
Genre: Dark, MM Romance
Author: Nyla K
Release Date: March 18,  2021

This is Alabaster Penitentiary…
Where they send you when the world thinks you’re dead. And trust me, you’ll wish you were.
We’re the stain on society. The freaks, the creeps, your favorite Netflix documentaries come to life.
They lock us up and throw away the key, because we deserve it.
But not me. I’m just a lowly bank robber. I don’t belong here, surrounded by psychopaths and killers with no remorse… At least, I don’t think I do.
Getting by unscathed is my top priority. Unfortunately for me and my fellow prisoners, those in charge are more dangerous than we are.
You see, the guards run the show, and I seem to have caught the attention of the most twisted one.
He has a name, but it might as well be Officer. We move around one another like a sun and a moon, revolving in an axis of confused lust and torment until the truth is distorted, and the thing I once feared becomes that which I crave; my vile addiction, somehow so exquisite.
Reality warps in the dungeon, and I’m left wondering which prison is worse… the one holding my body, or my mind.

**Distorted is the first book in the Alabaster Penitentiary series. It is a full M/M romance, with HEA. Each book in this series is technically a standalone, though they are interconnected, so it will be recommended to read in order, as references to this story will be made in future books.

Distorted is intended for mature audiences and open-minded readers ONLY! If you prefer the same old story, this book won’t be for you. This story is dark, probably darker for some than others, so please proceed with caution, and if you’re easily triggered, steer clear.

AMAZON

If you’re stuck in Hell for eternity, it’d be wise not to poke the Devil.”

Oh.
MY.
GOD.

What in the ever loving hell did I just read? Why am I only now discovering this author? And how the hell are more of you not reading her?

Because holy hell. HOLY HELL Y’ALL!!!!

First of all, if you like a dark, taboo MM read with an epic mind fuck thrown in, READ THIS BOOK!
Oh my god! Why are you not running to grab this immediately?
I’m about to go violent recommendation on all of your asses here, people! DO IT!

But I digress. First of all, I’m seriously kicking myself for not discovering this author sooner and super grateful to my lovely friend Francis for telling me she’d be right up my alley. And being a huge lover of all things dark and twisted, I couldn’t agree more. This was one of the most epic mind fucks I’ve read in a long while, and I’m already desperate for my next hit in this series. But I digress.

This book. THIS BOOK. A convict falling for a prison guard with plenty of dub con thrown in. GAH. Be still my heart. I can actually feel my ovaries fluttering. But I digress again.

Dash is the furthest thing from normal as you can get. He has his issues and plenty of them and he’s no stranger to criminal activities. But one risky robbery finally lands him in prison, and it’s a hell unlike any other, reserved for the worst of humanity, and he’s convinced it’s a mistake. As days begin to bleed together, the one sanity that he realizes he has, is his personal tormentor who he knows only as Officer.

Now let me tell you guys, this book is dark. Like seriously DARK, okay. There’s triggers for a good reason, so if you’re sensitive to those things, you’ve been warned. It’s definitely not for the faint of heart. It’s twisted. It’s perverse. It’s DELICIOUS. What else it is, is completely unputdownable. It’s 450+ pages of unpredictable story with a romance so delicious, you don’t even see it coming. To say I’m hooked on this series is an understatement. This series is crack and Nyla K just became my favorite dealer.

Copyright © 2015 · Dirty Girl Romance

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