Review: ★Game Changer★ by @m_cutler

Game Changer 
Series: Bomb Squad #3
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: May 19, 2015

The author of Undefeated and Risky Business has another sexy hero for you to meet…

Welcome to Destiny Falls, New York, home of Bomb Squad—an ice hockey team full of rugged military heroes. A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity has the team captain packing his bags for greener pastures, but saying good-bye to the woman who’d captured his heart is easier said than done…

After being wounded in combat, Brandon Theroux lives every day like it’s his last. He never could have imagined that the sleek mechanics of his prosthetic leg would open so many doors, including minor celebrity status as a fitness model and a well-earned reputation as a rakish playboy. The only door it hasn’t opened is the one to Harper Johnson’s bedroom.

Harper has too much self-respect to join the ranks of Brandon’s “carpe diem” conquests, but when she needs someone to keep the peace in the tavern she owns, Brandon offers his help—as long as she agrees to a very tempting trade. It isn’t long before the two realize that a deal struck between friends who can’t keep their hands off each other has the potential to be a whole lot hotter than either of them is prepared to handle…

This is going to ruin our friendship.”
The fire in his eyes threatened to incinerate them both where they stood. “Baby, we were never meant to be friends.”

Oh. Oh wow. This book. What a perfectly pleasant surprise this was. Admittedly, my inner cover whore first caught her eye on that cover, because c’mon, have you seen that cover. So of course I was thinking I’m getting another hot hockey player and manwhore and the woman that denies him so he wants her even more. What I got is so SO much more. The depth of these characters, their story, the romance, I think I loved everything about this book.

You should see the way you look right now,” he growled. “The fight in your eyes. The fire. I live to see you like this.”
“Such pretty words,” she sneered, shoving at his chest. “If only they weren’t empty.”
“You have no idea how hard I’ve tried to give you up.”
“Stop saying that as though it means something.”

Brandon Theroux lost his leg to an IAD explosion while deployed in the military, but he didn’t let that stop his life. A successful model and personal trainer by day, a lothario by night, he lives every day like it’s his last. As much as he loves his Bomb Squad team of fellow wounded vets, he knows he’s not meant for the small town of Destiny Falls and finally seizes his chance with the opportunity of a lifetime to move to Miami and appear on Meet the Groom and bring national recognition and inspiration for all wounded vets like himself. He just has some unfinished business first; in the form of the independent and feisty blonde that has been denying every single one of his advances for the last five years.

He didn’t know what the future held for her, or for him. All he knew was that neither of their lives would ever be the same again after this weekend.

Harper Johnson has no interest in being another notch on Brandon’s bedpost. She wants commitment and permanence and she knows that Brandon will never offer what she needs and she has too much pride to give into the lust between them knowing it won’t last past the night. She’s eight years older and he just may be too young to understand the beauty of what she wants. But then one disastrous hook up takes them from two people fighting their chemistry to two people who become each other’s rocks during their most difficult times and best friends.

Someday you’re going to find someone who’ll beg you to put that ball and chain on his leg. A guy who thinks the perfect way to spend the rest of his life is shackled to you inside your brick fortress.”

First of all, can I just say how much I loved the way that the author handled the first hookup between the characters. How often do you read about the hero loosing his erection because he’s so angry and the heroine faking an orgasm because she’s thinking too much. Bad sex? These two had it.

Melissa Cutler then takes a story that could have been ordinary and cliche and made into something so much more. She took a heroine and gave her a true struggle. She made her a survivor. She gave her a weakness to embrace. She made her a fighter, a woman who fights for every day of her life and enjoys it to the fullest. She then took a hero that could have been your typical manwhore, and gave him depth. She took a friendship and infused it with just the right amount of undeniable chemistry that the characters both try to ignore but can’t. She developed an incredible friendship between Brandon and Harper. She gave these characters so much depth and made me fall in love with their story and this book.

He was in love. He, Brandon, the biggest commitment-phone of all time, a self-proclaimed bachelor for all eternity. He didn’t want to settle down. He didn’t want to be shackled to one place and one woman. Except that now, he could think of no better fate than to spend the rest of his life bound to Harper.

Was this filled with gratuitous sex scenes? Nope. But the few that it did have were absolutely scorching and just added to the story. It’s not quick paced or filled with twists and turns. It’s a slow burn that’s paced just right to truly make you fall in love with the characters and the town of Destiny Falls. There was nothing even a little ordinary about either one of these characters and I absolutely loved all the secondary characters.

This was my first book by this author and I can definitely tell you that it won’t be my last. This book is easily read as a standalone (I started with this book and had no problems keeping up with the story), but I’ll definitely be going back and reading the rest of the series now. I hope that Melissa gives us Kayla’s book next because that set up was just too delicious to miss.

If you’re looking for a friends-to-lovers romance that’s different from the norm, a romance to fall in love with, and characters that you won’t soon forget, this is the book you need to be reading. I’m so glad that I did.

#NewRelease & Review: ★The Friend Zone★ by @Kris10Callihan

The Friend Zone (Game On #2)
Author: Kristen Callihan
Genre: New Adult Romance
Release Date: May 5. 2015

Gray doesn’t make friends with women. He has sex with them. Until Ivy.
The last thing star tight-end Gray Grayson wants to do is drive his agent’s daughter’s bubblegum pink car. But he needs the wheels and she’s studying abroad. Something he explains when she sends him an irate text to let him know exactly how much pain she’ll put him in if he crashes her beloved ride. Before he knows it, Ivy Mackenzie has become his best texting bud. But then Ivy comes home and everything goes haywire. Because the only thing Gray can think of is being with Ivy.

Ivy doesn’t have sex with friends. Especially not with a certain football player. No matter how hot he makes her…
Gray drives Ivy crazy. He’s irreverent, sex on a stick, and completely off limits. Because, Ivy has one golden rule: never get involved with one of her father’s clients. A rule that’s proving harder to keep now that Gray is doing his best to seduce her. Her best friend is fast becoming the most irresistible guy she’s ever met.

Which means Gray is going to have to use all his skills to get himself out of the friend zone and into Ivy’s heart. Game on

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 Excerpt

The backs of his fingers skim up my arm, raising goose bumps on my skin. “Nice top.”
Even though it’s thirty degrees out, I chose a black silk tank that hugs my waist but gathers loosely over my breasts. A tie around my neck holds the top secure. That I am braless is not lost on him. He stares at my stiff nipples as his fingers drift to the bow at the back of my neck and give it a little flick. “Take it off.”“W-what?”“Let me see those sweet tits you’ve been teasing me with since you walked in the bar.”“I—” My breath catches. “No. I’m not taking my clothes off for a stranger.”

He doesn’t look away. “But you want to, don’t you? You want me to look at you.” He bends his head until his lips are at my ear. “You’re dying to expose yourself, to let me see those pretty pink nipples.”

My skin draws tight. I struggle not to sway into him.

He leans back, his attention on my top again. “Untie the bow.”

“Someone might come in.” Despite our play, my fear of getting caught is real, though not completely unwelcome.

“They won’t. I took care of it.”

I believe that. Gray would cover all the bases. In his own way, he’s as much of a planner as I am. But I can’t think of him as Gray now, not when he’s doing this for me.

His fingers are back, skimming over my inner arm, teasing the edges of my top. “Just a little peek.”

My breasts ache so badly, they’re hot, heavy, the silk covering them an irritant. With shaking hands, I reach up. The fabric tugs against my neck then comes free. It slithers over my skin like a caress.

He sucks in an audible breath as my breasts are exposed. I see myself through his eyes, sitting half-naked in this dim back room, my nipples puckered, my breasts quivering with each shallow breath I take. The vulnerability of it feels naughty, forbidden, and I nearly whimper.

A noise of pure satisfaction leaves him. Not bothering to lift his gaze from my breasts, he reaches out, runs the tips of his fingers over my nipple. I’m so sensitized now the touch sends a bolt of pure, searing lust straight through me. I flinch, clench my teeth to keep still.

He hums, strokes me back and forth as if he owns me. “So pretty.” He grazes me again.

“You like that, sweetheart?”

Eyes closed, I bite my lower lip and nod.

I feel him move. The wet flat of his tongue drags over my nipple. My eyes fly open on a strangled cry. He grins up at me, his mouth hovering at my breast. It isn’t his usual cheeky grin but something more wicked. “Mmm. Delicious.”

He takes a step closer, and I swallow convulsively. Gray’s voice lowers. “I wonder where else you taste good. You want to show me, sweets?”

I’m practically panting now. My hair swings as I give my head a hard shake. He leans in, trailing the blunt tip of his finger up the curve of my breast. I nearly yelp when he gives the stiff peak a quick, crude pinch.

His smile is pure male smugness. “Lift up your skirt and show me where you’re wet.”

Review5 stars


You are the happiness I never realized I needed.

Have you ever started a book and from just the first few pages known that you have a 5 star on your hands? You know what feeling I’m talking about. The permanent goofy smile, the warm and fuzzies in your stomach, the I’ll-just-read-one-more-page-and-before-you-know-it-you’re-done, book butterflies kind of feeling. That’s exactly what happened to me. Now I loved The Hook Up and I was equal parts dying and dreading this book. Why? Because it’s hard to follow up on a book that you loved. But honest to gawd, I think I loved this one even more. Why?

1. There was Gray

If you love the manwhores but hate about reading all their conquests and about them generally being a giant douchebag for most of the book until they hit their epiphany, well my picky friends, meet your holy grail hero. Gray was absolute perfection from the very start. Well, don’t get me wrong, he’s not perfect perfect. But there were NO other women. None. Not even flirting. But oh was there texting. Which brings me to my next reason.

2. The banter/texting.
Oh. My. Gawd. The texting!

If you don’t have a goofy grin on your face reading each of the texts between Ivy and Gray, we’re not reading the same book. Seriously.

3. Ivy
I loved her. No seriously. I loved her. She was sassy, sharp-witted, 6ft of awkward dancing awesome. I just loved all her quirky imperfections and the fact that she wasn’t your typical dainty tiny heroine.


And, God help me because the truth is Ivy has become a craving in my blood, racing through me hot and thick.

Clearly Gray had no issues with that.

4. The friends-to-lovers trope
Gah. Just gah. I think this may have been my favorite friends to lovers romance I’ve read this year. That slow burn, that sizzling sexual tension. Perfection. I loved that their friendship was what developed first but with a clear underlying of attraction. And if you follow my reviews than you know I love me my slow burn. Why? Because when it finally implodes, it’s bound to be delicious…

And for my curious fellow perverts out there, yes there’s a verra good dose of steam here. I got two words for you: Bar. Scene. You’ll see.

So in case my list of feels wasn’t clear enough, I loved this book. I loved everything about it. Even the little thing that happens towards the end. To me, it fit the story and just added a little more depth to the characters and their romance.

Kristen Callahan hit it out of the ballpark once again. (Get it? Sports metaphor. Ha!) And I absolutely cannot wait for more in this series. Like maybe, hopefully, fingers crossed, Dex? I do love me those lumbersexuals.

Would I recommend this book? Hell yes! Read it, fall in love with the characters, laugh like a loon, and not regret a perfect second of it.

 

New Release & Review: ★The Mistake★ by @ElleKennedy

The Mistake (Off-Campus #2)
Author: Elle Kennedy
Genre: New Adult Romance
Release: April 28, 2015

He’s a player in more ways than one…
College junior John Logan can get any girl he wants. For this hockey star, life is a parade of parties and hook-ups, but behind his killer grins and easygoing charm, he hides growing despair about the dead-end road he’ll be forced to walk after graduation. A sexy encounter with freshman Grace Ivers is just the distraction he needs, but when a thoughtless mistake pushes her away, Logan plans to spend his final year proving to her that he’s worth a second chance.

Now he’s going to need to up his game…
After a less than stellar freshman year, Grace is back at Briar University, older, wiser, and so over the arrogant hockey player she nearly handed her V-card to. She’s not a charity case, and she’s not the quiet butterfly she was when they first hooked up. If Logan expects her to roll over and beg like all his other puck bunnies, he can think again. He wants her back? He’ll have to work for it. This time around, she’ll be the one in the driver’s seat…and she plans on driving him wild.


He absolutely makes me nervous. He’s John fucking Logan, one of the most popular guys at this college. And I’m Grace fucking Ivers, one of thousand of girls who are crushing on him.

You know what I love? A sexy bad boy. Know what I love even more? A good grovel. What else? A sassy and sharp witted heroine that makes the sexy bad boy work for it. So this book? My golden trifecta.

If you’ve read The Deal, then you remember Logan, Garrett’s best friend and roommate and also the poor bastard that manages to get a crush on Garrett’s girlfriend. Seemingly Logan has it all; his choice of girls, a promising hockey future and infamy on campus. But deep down everything is not quite so perfect. His promising hockey future? A mirage that he perpetuates to his friends because of a secret he hides. His pick of girls? Irrelevant because he can’t have the one he wants. But then knocking on the wrong door changes the course of his life when he meets Grace Ivers.

Grace Ivers is an introverted freshman with a mild case of OCD that’s as endearing as she is quirky. Prone to babbling when she gets nervous, I knew just after a few short lines that I’d love her. Her internal dialogue never failed to bring a goofy smile to my face.


I’ve given handjobs before, plus a few blowjobs that I know were a huge success because…well, semen and all that. but I don’t have enough experience to consider myself an expert penis-wrangler or anything.

What starts out as an unlikely friendship quickly turns into something more. Unfortunately before Logan realizes just how perfect Grace is for him he manages to fuck things up so perfectly there may be no fixing it.

I’d say this book is split in two halves; 1. Pre-monumental fuck up and 2. Post-monumental fuck up. And in between those two there’s one deliciously perfect grovel. As much as I liked Grace in the first half of the book, I absolutely loved her in the  second half. She’s a lot more assertive and self-assured in the second half. She really grows into her own and becomes that much more endearing.

To be honest seeing how Logan was crushing on Hannah in the last book and beginning of this one, I was afraid that he’d be “settling” for Grace. But that was never the case, not at all. As a matter of fact, I loved how the author handled that situation. I seriously loved every page of this book. The humor and banter between the guys (and my beloved manwhore Dean) was pure gold.


Just out of curiosity, what constitutes a ‘nice cock shot’? I mean, is it the lighting? The pose?”
“Well, the trick is, you’ve gotta keep the balls out of it.”
“Seriously,” Dean insists. “Balls aren’t photogenic. Women don’t want to see them.”

As for Logan, let’s just say my lust love for Logan never wavered. Well it may have shaken slightly at one point but boy did he make up for it.


Trust me, baby, you’re the only woman I want. The only one who gets me going.”

Everything the man said and did had me feeling all warm and lusty inside.

There was the one “friend” of Grace’s, Ramona, that I wanted to punch in both ovaries and then not-so-gently push her off a bridge because hello twat alert! I was glad to see that Grace wasn’t such a pushover with her later in the book as she was in the beginning, but hopefully Ramona never gets a book. I swear every time I read her name all I could think of was crazy Ramona from Real Housewives and I wanted to reach through my kindle and throttle her.

True story 😉

Aside from that, I really loved this. Logan was absolutely swoon worthy. I loved him and Grace together. I loved him in general. Sure you get another hero with “daddy issues” but I couldn’t find it in me to care.


Belonging. It’s the only way to describe the exquisite rush of sensation that washes over me. His lips BELONG on mine.

If you loved The Deal, I’m almost positive that you’ll love The Mistake. I know that I sure as hell did and I absolutely cannot wait for the next book. I’m hoping it will be my manwhoring Dean. If the set-up in this book is what I think it is then his book is sure to be one verra interesting read.

Review: ★Game Play★ by Lynda Aicher

Game Play (Power Play #1)
Author: Lynda Aicher
Genre: Contemporary, Sports Romance
Length: 248 Pages
Release Date: February 16, 2015

 One night, one time, nothing more.That’s all it was supposed to be. They’d agreed their first night together would be their only night together—and Minnesota Glaciers defenseman Dylan Rylie was fine with that. Giant hickeys and claw marks on his ass had never been his style, even if the very memory of Samantha Yates’s merciless sexual energy gets him hard within seconds. He needs to focus on getting a better contract, not mind-blowing orgasms.

One night, one time, nothing more.

Fresh off representing the US at the Games and with nowhere else to play, Samantha gave in to one night of frantic passion with the Glaciers’ brawny hotshot. She couldn’t get hurt—not if she controlled the outcome. And she planned to leave Minnesota soon, anyway. She didn’t expect to be recruited to coach Dylan after they’d gotten down and dirty.

When brutal on-ice workouts lead to kinky locker room sessions and “one night” falls by the wayside, Samantha insists on keeping things casual, despite Dylan’s quiet hope for more. But when Dylan goes down—hard—and his career is in jeopardy, Samantha is the first one by his side. What will it take to keep her there after he’s healed?

There was nothing like battling a strong opponent. Nothing she’d found at least. And nothing had tested her like Dylan Rylie since she’d left the game- off the ice or on.

This was my first book by Lynda Aicher, and I can definitely tell you that it won’t be my last. I really clicked with her style of story telling and of course the fact that I’m a huge hockey fan didn’t hurt either. It’s clear from Lynda’s writing that she’s either a fan of the sport herself or she’s definitely done her share of research, so even if you’re not a fan of the sport, you will have no problems understanding it after you read this book.

What first intrigued me about this synopsis was the fact that Samantha, the heroine, is a hockey player herself and a damn good one. Unfortunately the female professional team just isn’t as lucrative or promising as the male one. So no matter how much love Samantha has for the sport and her career in it, she knows that she has no future with it. Forced to give up on her dream, especially after as much success as she’s had in it has certainly left her with her share of bitterness.

So when she sees Dylan Rylie, a Glacier’s defenseman, practicing on the same rink as her one night, she issues a challenge and proceeds to wipe the floor with him, much to the shock of everyone around them…including Dylan. There is a good amount of pent up sexual tension surrounding them, and when a drink at the bar after turns into one fiery encounter on a desk, sparks definitely fly. But while they decide on this being one night only, especially since Samantha plans on leaving in 6 months, Dylan isn’t as convinced to let it go at that. Convincing his coach to hire Sam as his trainer after she more than proved her skills on the ice, Dylan and Samantha’s relationship turns into one giant complication.

So why only 3 stars? Two reasons really. The biggest one being Samantha. She drove me a little crazy with her constant back and forth and bitter mentality. Her treatment of Dylan was almost callous at times and Dylan was an absolute sweetheart, which made it all the worse. I couldn’t connect to her “hangups”. Her belief that her father always wanted a boy and her constantly trying to live up to it just didn’t really seem solid enough reasoning. Especially since there wasn’t enough backstory on that end to really support her thoughts, or at least not to the extent that it was made to be. I understood her drive to succeed and be independent in her own right, but it also didn’t excuse her lack of support (or at least I found it to be) towards Dylan. At times I found myself thinking that Dylan was just too good for her.

The second reason was Dylan. Now here’s the thing, he was a total sweetheart and that would probably really work for many reasons. I like my heroes to be total alphas, and he just didn’t give off that vibe to me. Maybe a gamma at best? I found Samantha to be the more intense and in control of the two as far as their interactions went. I suppose I just wanted a little more ‘presence’ from Dylan, if that even makes sense. Sure he was sexy and funny, but he just lacked a certain intensity that I’ve come to like in my heroes. I didn’t really connect with his party boy “image” either. Yes, we’re given reasons for this particular facade, but it just never made sense to me. Could be I missed something? For whatever reason, those two things combined did wane my enjoyment of this book quite a bit. While the story is original, sexy, and entertaining, I often found the characters to me lacking for me. I will happily read the next installment in the series and definitely look forward to getting to know more of the Glaciers players.

ARC Review: Blue Lines by Toni Aleo

Opposites do more than just attract in Toni Aleo’s latest Nashville Assassins novel about a very bad boy and the good girl he can’t resist.

The instant Piper Allen sees Erik Titov, she wants him—wants his rock-hard body, sure, but the strength and mystery that lies behind that superstar hockey jock demeanor, too. So when he sidles up to her at a bar and slinks his arm around her waist, she’s lost. What follows is the wildest night of her life . . . followed by inevitable heartbreak the next morning. And then, a few weeks later, a very big surprise: two blue lines on a pregnancy test.

Only a check to the head could make Erik fall for a nice girl like Piper. But since their crazy-sexy night together, he’s been trying to forget about her alluring body by falling into bed with every woman in Nashville, and it’s not working. So when Piper shows up at his house with a baby-bomb to drop, it doesn’t take much for Erik to suggest the nuclear option: marriage. While it’s supposed to be all for show, the second they say “I do,” the ice between them starts to melt into sizzling steam.

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Review
4.5 stars
“You need someone to love you and you need to know that you deserve that love, and I want you to let me be that someone.”
I love a good sports romance, add into this mix a sexy, tatted, very man-whorish hockey player and I’m on pervy cloud 9. But this was no smooth ride for me. As much as I wanted to love Erik, I’m pretty sure I wanted to kick him in the nuts more often than not. He had so many things going for him, and then he’d open his mouth and the things he’d say to Piper just had me going

But all that aside, I spent the end of this book in tears. The last part of this book made me cry silly, crocodile tears of joy. I loved it so much.

Piper has been in love with the sexy Erik Titov for months. So when the opportunity to give into their mutual passion shows itself, she doesn’t even think twice. The last thing that she expects is for Erik to leave, and to leave her with a plus sign surprise after their night together.

Erik hasn’t been able to put the alluring Piper out of his mind since that night. But he knows that he’s not the right man for her. So he moves on the only way he knows how, between the legs of many, many, many different women.

So when Piper shows up on his door step with the shocking news that he’s to be a daddy, suffice it to say he doesn’t take it very well. I swear, the things that this man would say to Piper had me screaming

Because I wanted to kick his man-whoring ass. To say that he was a dick to her for the majority of the book would be a gross understatement. Particularly when he proposed that they get married for the sake of image. Really Erik! Way to take the romance out of things!

Piper on the other hand was an amazing heroine. I loved her from the very beginning. Her strength and the way she cared for Erik through thick and thin really got to me. She was such a likable and endearing heroine.

Now as much as I wanted to hate Erik, there were moments where his vulnerability would shine through and we got to see the real man behind the facade. And little by little I began to warm up to him. When the truth behind his childhood all came to light, I can definitely say I understood exactly why he was so hesitant to fall for Piper.

Their story was filled with many bumps, but it was also filled with sweet and steamy moments. I lived for the times where Erik’s sweet side would shine through. And then that ending; perfection!

So as frustrating as some parts of this book were, and as much as I wanted to throttle Erik, I still really enjoyed it and looking forward to the next installment of the Assasins series.

Copyright © 2015 · Dirty Girl Romance

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