Great Books I Read in 2016

I read a total of 181 books in 2016 and while not all of them were my favorites or top books of the year, some were really enjoyable and I would highly recommend checking them out. So below are some books that I read and highly enjoyed in 2016 and I think you will too.


Dirty Together by Meghan March
My wife.
I love saying those words.
She’s mine, and if she thinks I’m going to let her run without tracking her down and bringing her back to where she belongs—with me—then she’s about to be introduced to a new reality.
Because I’ll fight dirty to give her the happily ever after she deserves.

 

 


Make Me Sin by JT Geissinger
Chloe Carmichael’s life feels pretty sweet—she’s both maid of honor and florist for her best friend’s A-list wedding, things are getting serious with her boyfriend, and her flower shop is about to get a spread in a national magazine. But it all quickly turns sour whenever the best man, Bad Habit drummer A.J. Edwards, shows his face…his handsome, unforgettable face. A.J. is everything Chloe doesn’t want: tattooed, selfish, and all-around bad news. So why can’t she stop thinking about him?Goody two-shoes Chloe isn’t exactly A.J.’s type, either, but the chemistry between them is undeniable. A.J. will be the first to say he isn’t a saint, but there’s something he’s not saying—something that would devastate Chloe. The only way he can protect her is to push her away, but the drummer finds he needs her now more than ever. When a wedding-day confrontation reveals secrets they’re both hiding, will Chloe and A.J. ever find their rhythm again?


Snack by Emme Burton
Marcus “Snack” Snackenberg is a born ladykiller.
When Minnie Cooper moves back to her dad’s hometown as a child, with her two brothers and Star Wars action figures in tow, they become immediate friends.
By junior high, Minnie, although unaware, is in love with him.
Snack is completely in touch with his feelings for her.
Sometimes the villain in the story isn’t a person.
Sometimes it’s time.
And space.
And fear.
Fear of losing the best friend you’ve ever had.
Snack.
An overnight romance…twenty-six years in the making.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27833945-snack


Last Call by Staci Hart

Once Rose Fisher makes a decision, that’s it. End of story.
Like when her ex, Patrick, dumped her out of the blue, then showed up with a super hot, tatted up sex kitten on his arm. Then it was over for good. The end. Poof. Dead to her. Except he was everywhere — down the hall, at the bar with their friends, worming his way into her dreams.
But with their friends paired off, they’re left alone more and more. Rose is determined to keep him friendzoned — doesn’t matter that he stares at her with a smolder that drops all panties in a ten foot radius. She’s over him, and she’ll prove it by getting back into the dating game, Patrick be damned.
Patrick Evans is no stranger to consequences. When your mother walks out, your dad drifts away. When you leave home, you’re on your own. And when you run away from the girl you love, you lose her. He finally has an opportunity to rebuild the bridge he burned, and it’s not one he’ll take for granted. But he’ll have to fight for her, even if it hurts. Even if it means he’ll walk away brokenhearted. Because deep down, he knows that she’s it for him.
The trick will be to get her to admit she feels it too.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27181582-last-call


Some Sort of Love by Melanie Harlow

From the outside looking in, I had it all—a career I loved, a supportive family, the Nixon metabolism but not the Nixon ears, and a salary that supported my lavish taste in designer shoes, fine wine, and lacy lingerie … but I had no one to share it with.
Until the day I ran into him—my one night stand from college with the crooked smile, let’s-get-out-of-here eyes, and dirty, dirty mouth.
Cute and cocky then, today Levi Brooks is six feet four inches of hot bearded fantasy. A sexy single dad with broad shoulders, strong hands, and a fantastically big … heart. (I mean, it’s massive. And generous. And it pumps so hard … um. Sorry. Lost my place.)
Being a good father means everything to him, but he’s keeping me at a distance because he thinks I deserve someone better — a man who can give me more time, more attention, more of him elf. He doesn’t believe he could ever be enough.
But he’s wrong.
He’s everything.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27845282-some-sort-of-love


Hooker by Brooke Blaine

Whoever said singles were missing out by not finding true love and getting married before the age of thirty had never experienced the sheer pleasure of nightly romantic comedy viewings in their underwear while eating one of Licked’s famous Crazy Cat Lady sundaes. Because life just doesn’t get better than that.
At least, it doesn’t for Shayne Callahan. It didn’t take more than a handful of broken hearts after college to solidify that she was better at pairing up those around her than herself. As a matchmaker at the elite HLS—Hook, Line, & Sinker Matchmaking Company—in the City of Angels, she has a knack for finding the other halves of even the most eccentric clients:
Sugar daddy with a foot fetish? Gross, but no problem.
A severe case of nudophobia? Match made before lunch.
But even the most happily independent of women can find their best-laid plans screeching to a halt when they meet that guy. For Shayne, that guy comes in the form of boyishly handsome, suspender-lovin’, dimple-poppin’ Nate Ryan on a pantsless (we’ll get to that later) Metro ride.
Of course, relationships can never be easy. Before the destined lovers can ride off into the sunset, they must overcome a power-hungry and sexual-punning boss, a celebrity scandal and cover-up, and let’s not forget Shayne’s dreadful foot-in-mouth disease—with which there can never be a happily ever after.
Will fate throw Shayne a freakin’ bone? Or will she be destined to live out her life as sexy(ish), single(ish), and L.A.’s finest Hooker (upper)?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28013770-hooker


Drop Dead Sexy by Katie Ashley

For Olivia Sullivan, love is more a four letter curse word than a sentiment. Growing up as the daughter of a small town mortician, guys didn’t warm to the fact there were dead people in her house. At thirty, taking over the family business and becoming the town Coroner helped to cement her undateable status. Of course her past sex history didn’t help matters either.
Attempt number one with her first love ended barely before it got started with a horrific latex allergy hospitalization. Attempt number two had him coming and then going with an undiagnosed heart condition. For the past three years, Olivia has closed up shop for fear of what might happen next in the bedroom.
After being forced to go single to her mother’s lingerie shower, Olivia stumbles into an out of town bar with one intention: find an able bodied stud to go home with to end her losing sex streak. Enter Holden Caulfield Mains aka Catcher, who earned his nickname not just from the book he was named for, but for the fact he was sure to catch the attention any woman who came within a five mile radius. Waking up after a night of the most mind blowing sex she could have ever imagined, a horrified Olivia runs away thinking she’s left Catcher behind.
When Olivia’s small town is wracked by its first murder, she never could have imagined her one night stand would reappear in the form of the GBI’s lead investigator. To her mortification, Catcher isn’t ready to let go of their sizzling chemistry, and he doesn’t understand the meaning of no. As things start to heat up between them, the body count starts to rise, and they’re led on a wild goose chase from back woods mountain Nudist Colonies to altercations with the Dixie Mafia. Can Olivia and Catcher survive to solve the murder while also not succumbing to their explosive passion?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17236244-drop-dead-sexy


Fall by Stacey Brandon and Karen Bell

Liv is smart, sexy, and confident. Just ask her. She isn’t shy. Her photography business is starting to really take off, she has amazing friends, and there has never been a shortage of boyfriends. With so much to offer, why hasn’t she ever fallen in love?
Zac followed his dream and just opened his first restaurant. He is also about to marry the woman he has loved since he was in high school. He has his life right on track and couldn’t be happier.
When Liv is hired to photograph Zac’s upcoming wedding, she realizes why she’s never been in love before… She hadn’t met the right guy yet.
When Zac gets to know the photographer for his wedding, he can’t stop thinking about her. It doesn’t change his love for his fiance’… but Liv fascinates him and that scares him more than he wants to admit.
What happens when you fall for a guy that already belongs to someone else?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29453498-fall


The Matchmaker’s Playbook by Rachel Van Dyken

Wingman rule number one: don’t fall for a client.
After a career-ending accident, former NFL recruit Ian Hunter is back on campus—and he’s ready to get his new game on. As one of the masterminds behind Wingmen, Inc., a successful and secretive word-of-mouth dating service, he’s putting his extensive skills with women to work for the lovelorn. But when Blake Olson requests the services of Wingmen, Inc., Ian may have landed his most hopeless client yet.
From her frumpy athletic gear to her unfortunate choice of footwear, Blake is going to need a miracle if she wants to land her crush. At least with a professional matchmaker by her side she has a fighting chance. Ian knows that his advice and a makeover can turn Blake into another successful match. But as Blake begins the transformation from hot mess to smokin’ hot, Ian realizes he’s in danger of breaking his cardinal rule.…

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27383715-the-matchmaker-s-playbook


Rugged by Lila Monroe

Laurel Young needs a plan, and fast. After her reality TV boss has a major meltdown, not-so-fun employment seems inevitable–unless she can pitch the idea of a lifetime. When she sees Flint McKay’s audition tape – flannelled, handsome as hell, and building a house with his own two hands – she knows she’s found her secret weapon. The women of America are going to love him, especially if she can convince him to try building without the flannel shirt.
Only problem is, Flint didn’t make that tape – and he has zero interest in trading the wilds of Western Massachusetts for the bright lights of Hollywood. But Laurel isn’t the kind of girl to take no for an answer. Soon, she’s knee-deep in rustic charm, and getting plenty of hands-on experience. And it turns out, this city girl and country guy may have a few things in common after all, like crazy hot chemistry, a wild side, and a weakness for good whiskey…
But can their behind-the-scenes connection last once the world falls in love with Flint? And will this be the big break both of them need- or leave them in the dirt?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28479939-rugged


Moto by M. Never

What’s harder than resisting one Dane man? Resisting two.
I don’t date bikers. It’s my one cardinal rule. No rough, rugged, tattooed egotistical maniacs on two wheels. Even if they are gorgeous, brilliant, and sport the prefix Doctor. Bottom line, bikers are nothing but trouble.
T.R.O.U.B.L.E
Dr. Devlin Dane has had his sights set on my panties for months. But I’ve done a stellar job of fending him off. As Mercy Medical’s most eligible bachelor, he has no problem in the panty dropping department. He’s tall, dark, and inked all over. I get the appeal, I’m not dead. I’m not stupid either. He’s a walking heartbreak waiting to happen.
But when Reese Dane comes crashing into my life – literally- the game suddenly changes.
Reese, the dark, brooding, motorcycle racing champion, knows exactly how to apply the right pressure on and off the track.
The two have an unstoppable pull like centrifugal force, and both bad boy bikers are determined to take me on a high-powered ride I’ll never forget…

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29888745-moto


Below The Surface by Elizabeth Lee

Daniella Alvarez and Dylan McKendrie used to be in love. They used to be a team. An inseparable force to be reckoned with. But, when tragedy struck, their relationship sank faster than the ships they used to scour the ocean floor for. Now all that’s left are scattered remains of what used to be.
Dylan, no longer seeking the mysteries on the ocean floor, now goes for the sure things and the guaranteed paychecks. When a longtime friend suggests he has hard proof that one of those legends that used to keep Dylan up at night could be real, he’s torn between going after the gold and maintaining the life he’d built since leaving The Florida Keys.
Daniella was always a dreamer. She’s always been chasing what would most deem unattainable—professionally and personally. Everything she’d ever wanted seemed to slip through her fingers the day he left, which is exactly why his return has her seeing red.
Can the two of them put their past aside long enough to figure out a mystery that has plagued them both for years? Can they work together to see what lies below the surface?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32195639-below-the-surface


Remember When by R.C. Boldt

Over a decade ago, fourth grade teacher Tate Donnelly was attending college with the love of her life by her side. She had been certain, even then, that it was the forever kind of love. But she was proven wrong when he left her all alone to pick up the pieces of her life—and heart—when her entire world imploded.
Former Navy SEAL Miller Vaughn once had the love of a girl he thought would be his, and be by his side forever. Unfortunately, that only lasted until after he joined the Navy. Then she vanished, never to be heard from again. Throwing himself into his training, he vowed to become the best, toughest SEAL he could be, and never let a girl get the best of him again.
Years later, a man who resembles a boy she once knew reappears in her life. A boy she had loved with her whole being. A boy who had eviscerated her heart.
Though much time has passed, Tate and Miller still feel that same “pull” they did years ago. When truths about the past are revealed, will they both be able to move on from their painful past … or are they destined for heartbreak again?
Can they remember when their love was the most important thing in their world?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28592188-remember-when


Untimely You by K. Webster

He can’t love her. It simply won’t work. Besides, he’s already bound to the prison he created. A life that owns him.
She craves to help him. She’ll make it work. His secrets test the limits of her sanity and morals. Yet he owns her.
The chains will break free.
The demon will be released.
And he’ll be hungry for…her.
Will their untimely love overcome the past and create a living, breathing future?
Perhaps.
Or, they might just go crazy…

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30848835-untimely-you


The Matchmaker’s Replacement by Rachel Van Dyken

Wingman rule number two: never reveal how much you want them.
Lex hates Gabi. Gabi hates Lex. But, hey, at least the hate is mutual, right? All Lex has to do is survive the next few weeks training Gabi in all the ways of Wingmen Inc. and then he can be done with her. But now that they have to work together, the sexual tension and fighting is off the charts. He isn’t sure if he wants to strangle her or throw her against the nearest sturdy table and have his way with her.
But Gabi has a secret, something she’s keeping from not just her best friend but her nemesis too. Lines are blurred as Lex becomes less the villain she’s always painted him to be…and starts turning into something more. Gabi has always hated the way she’s been just a little bit attracted to him—no computer-science major should have that nice of a body or look that good in glasses—but “Lex Luthor” is an evil womanizer. He’s dangerous. Gabi should stay far, far away.
Then again, she’s always wanted a little danger.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29068220-the-matchmaker-s-replacement


Laws of Attraction by R.C. Boldt

Langley Ford is the definition of serious. Going through life as a pararescue jumper, working solely around men, she’s had to go above and beyond to prove she’s their equal. In fact, she can’t recall the last time she allowed herself to truly relax or let her guard down.
Always the one others rely on to crack jokes, the one to liven things up, Lawson Briggs is a fun, easygoing guy who doesn’t take life too seriously. But witnessing so many of his friends falling in love, he begins to wonder what the fuss is about. Will he ever fall prey to that infamous “love bug”?
Langley is now out of the military and working at a security consulting firm. When she meets the tall, bearded teacher who has endless wisecracks and comments, a part of her wishes she could be like him, wishes she could remember how.
While Lawson might be the best person to teach her how to live life to the fullest, will Langley be the one who teaches him all about love?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28592225-laws-of-attraction


The Hunted by HJ Bellus

Revenge. Blood. Lies. Hate.
The good guy is the bad guy and the bad guy is the good guy.
Or is that what they want you to believe?
In a city where crime is at an all time high and new mutilated bodies are showing up every day, who do you trust?
He’s the silent neighbor who vanishes at night and reappears when the morning news is reporting on the latest victim.
How do you know this?
You watch him through the curtains as his silent stalker. Everything about him is twisted, but you can’t get past his stare. It’s hypnotizing and the hardest pull you’ve ever experienced…you know it’s all wrong.
Then he walks through your front door covered in blood.
Who will you trust?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25710046-the-hunted


Depths Of Salvation by Molly E. Lee

Sadie Jenkins’ most recent site of preservation is a sunken WWII cargo ship off the coast of the Bahamas. When a giant corporation threatens to blow it up to make way for an underwater gas pipeline, Sadie is forced to prove to the Head of Government the importance and value of her site. And when assistance comes from a bad-boy welder who works for the corporation, she ends up battling not only the people trying to demolish her site, but her heart as well—because its latched on to the one man who can save her ship or destroy it.
Connell Murphey is the best underwater welder this side of the Atlantic and thrives when the stakes are highest. When Slade Industries offers him a dangerous gig with a big pay off, he can’t wait to sign on. When a local marine preservationist gives Slade trouble—her site’s protection would cost him millions to go around it instead of through it—Slade offers Connell the deal of a lifetime: twelve million has his name on it if he gets close to Sadie and testifies to the Head of Government that her site isn’t worth saving. Should be easy money.
That is, until he meets Sadie. She’s a force to be reckoned with and the only woman who has ever been able to not only keep pace with him on a dive but completely surpass him on every level. She’s smart, sexy, and their chemistry is off the charts. The more he gets to know her, the harder he falls but he’s already in too deep with the deal he made with Slade.
When the time comes, will he be able to turn down the money and choose the girl of his dreams, or will too many lies kill his only chance at forever?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31680368-depths-of-salvation


Bedmates by Nicole Chase

Everyone makes mistakes, especially in college. But when you’re the daughter of the President of the United States, any little slip up is a huge embarrassment. Maddie McGuire’s latest error in judgment lands her in police custody, giving the press a field day. Agreeing to do community service as penance and to restore her tattered reputation, Maddie never dreams incredibly good looking but extremely annoying vice president’s son, Jake Simmon, will be along for the ride.
Recently returning from Afghanistan with a life-altering injury, Jake is wrestling with his own demons. He doesn’t have the time or patience to deal with the likes of Maddie. They’re like oil and water and every time they’re together, it’s combustible. But there’s a thin line between love and hate, and it’s not long before their fiery arguments give way to infinitely sexier encounters.
When Jake receives devastating news about the last remaining member of his unit, the darkness he’s resisted for so long begins to overwhelm him. Scared to let anyone close, he pushes Maddie away. But she isn’t about to give up on Jake that easily. Maddie’s fallen for him, and she’ll do anything to keep him from the edge as they both discover that love is a battlefield and there are some fights you just can’t lose.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25817470-bedmates


Risking Ruin by Mae Wood

Marisa Tanner’s most important client, multi-billion dollar family-owned Brannon Company, has been sued by nine of its employees for sexual harassment. Marisa is a pro at handling sexual harassment allegations, but will she be able to handle the CEO’s prodigal son as well as she can handle the lawsuits?
Clients are off-limits and Marisa could lose her law license and livelihood, but Memphis playboy Trip keeps making strong plays for her.
Their attraction is undeniable and chemistry electric. Can she have her career and Trip, too, or will she have to choose?
A steamy debut novel by Mae Wood, “Risking Ruin” is a stand alone novel that blends the tone of chick-lit and the sensuality of contemporary romance to create a landscape filled with strong characters in the lush environment of Memphis, Tennessee.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32293860-risking-ruin


To Love and To Cherish by Lauren Layne

Alexis Morgan has spent the past six years devoted to turning her tiny start-up into Manhattan’s premiere wedding planning company, The Wedding Belles. Now that her business is thriving, it’s time to turn towards her much neglected personal life, and Alexis approaches her relationships like she does everything else: with a plan. Not a part of that plan is Logan Harris, the silent partner in the Belles, and the one person who’s been there for her since the very beginning. But Alexis needs someone fun, and Logan’s all business, all the time—except when a late night at the office ends with an unexpected kiss that leaves the usually cool and together Alexis reeling.
Logan has lusted after Alexis since the day he walked into the tiny Harlem apartment that used to double as her office. But the ambitious wedding planner has always been untouchable…until now. Alexis has made it clear that she’s on the dating market—and equally clear that he’s not in the running. But when Alexis finds herself in need of a date for her sister’s last minute wedding in Florida, Logan knows it’s the perfect time to show Alexis that there’s more to him than numbers and spreadsheets—and beneath the pinstripes and glasses lies a hot-blooded heartthrob. As Florida’s sultry days turn into even hotter nights, Logan’s out to convince Alexis that the fling of a lifetime could just maybe turn into forever…

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29997408-to-love-and-to-cherish


Beneath These Shadows by Meghan March

The only permanent thing in my life is the ink I put on my clients.
I drift from city to city, in and out of beds, from one tattoo shop to the next.
Every time I start to put down roots, I rip them up.
Until New Orleans.
Until her.
She’s everything I’m not.
Full of fire and life. An innocent where I’m a sinner.
I want to consume her. Protect her. Keep her.
But first, I have to escape from beneath these shadows.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30249091-beneath-these-shadows


Challenge by Amy Daws

He’s her patient. She’s his doctor. They shouldn’t. But God, do they want to.
Camden Harris, the famously hot, hulk of a footballer is laid up in a London hospital. But his busted knee doesn’t stop him from running his well-practiced game on Indie Porter—his redheaded spitfire of a doctor. She’s not his type, not even close. But she could be the perfect distraction from the soul-crushing damage this injury could cost him.
Indie’s tired of her naivety putting a target on her back. As a gifted child, she’s let her education take the front seat her whole life. But a fling with a footballer like Camden might be just what she needs to grab life by the balls.
And he could be the perfect guy for the plan she’s been sitting on for over two years.
But when feelings make a final play, there’s no amount of medicine that can heal the damage to their hearts.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30266228-challenge


Love Story by Lauren Layne – Excerpt Reveal

Over the course of one wild road trip, 

feuding childhood sweethearts get a second chance at love.

LOVE STORY
a Love Unexpectedly novel
Lauren Layne
Releasing February 14th, 2017
Loveswept

Over the course of one wild road trip, feuding childhood sweethearts get a second chance at love in this charming rom-com—a standalone novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Blurred Lines and Good Girl.

When Lucy Hawkins receives a job offer in San Francisco, she can’t wait to spread her wings and leave her small Virginia hometown behind. Her close-knit family supports her as best they can, by handing over the keys to a station wagon that’s seen better days. The catch? The cross-country trip comes with a traveling companion: her older brother’s best friend, aka the guy who took Lucy’s virginity hours before breaking her heart.

After spending the past four years and every last dime caring for his sick father, Reece Sullivan will do just about anything to break free of the painful memories—even if it means a two-week road trip with the one girl who’s ever made it past his carefully guarded exterior. But after long days of bickering in the car turn into steamy nights in secluded motel rooms, Reece learns that, when it comes to Lucy, their story is far from over. And this time, they just might have a shot at a happy ending.

Although listed as a title in the Love Unexpectedly Series, all books in the series stand alone.

 

“Spock, we’re giving you Horny!” my mom blurts out, apparently fed up with my denseness.

Her utterance is too much for my siblings to handle and they both burst out laughing, retreating into the kitchen to rejoin the party where there’s wine.

Oh what I wouldn’t give for wine right now.

“I, um . . . you’re giving me the car?” I ask.

“Because yours broke down,” my dad explains, walking forward to thump Horny’s dented hood.

“And this one’s . . . not broken down?” I ask skeptically.

Look, it’s not that I’m not grateful. My parents are trying to give me a car, I appreciate the sweetness of the gesture, it’s just . . .

Here’s the thing about Horny: he barely got us three kids through high school. I mean, Horny is the car that sputtered and shook making it the 3.2 miles to Jefferson High, no matter who was behind the wheel.

I’m even going to come all the way clean here and say that early on in my freshmen year, I was embarrassed showing up in Horny. Then I realized I was lucky to have a car at all, and well . . . I dunno, I guess Horny became a part of us Hawkins kids’ charm, because the station wagon was practically an institution from Craig’s high school reign all the way through Brandi’s.

But poor Horny quit working years ago. Much to Brandi’s chagrin, he gave up the ghost a mere two months before her high school graduation, and she spent the last bit of her senior year being picked up by my parents.

“He’s going to take you to California,” Dad says, giving the car another thump.

“Really?” I step forward and run a tentative finger along the familiar panel. He’s had a bath, so at least that’s something. “Because last I knew, he wouldn’t even make it out of the garage.”

“Yeah, well, we neglected him for a while, but he’s right as rain now,” Dad says, puffing out his chest as though Horny’s a fourth child.

“Like, as in he actually starts?”

“Purrs like a kitten,” my mom says with an emphatic nod, even though I know she doesn’t even like cats. “We didn’t believe it, but we took him to church on Sunday and there were no issues.”

I literally bite my tongue to keep from pointing out that this is hardly a feat. Sacred Presbyterian is 0.8 miles away from the house.

“You took Horny into a shop?” I ask, starting to warm to the idea of having a car again. I’m a little touched, actually. Money is tight for my parents. Dad’s a PE teacher, and Mom gives a mean winery tour, but the gig’s never paid much.

“Not exactly, it was more of a bartering situation,” Mom says.

“Yeah?” I say, going around to the driver’s seat, already giddy with the prospect of telling Oscar I’ll be able to come see him in Miami after all, even if I won’t exactly be riding in style.

“Reece agreed to fix him up.”

I’m lowering myself into the car as my dad says this, but I reverse so quickly I hit my head. My skull doesn’t even register the pain, because I’m too busy registering the hurt in my heart at the familiar name. “I’m sorry, what?”

“Reece,” my mom says, giving me a bemused look. “He’s always been handy with cars.”

“He fixed up the car in exchange for what?”

And then I feel—I actually feel—the air change around me as the side door to the garage opens, and a new presence sucks all the air out of the space.

I don’t turn around. I don’t move. But I feel his eyes on me. Over me.

“Reece is headed out to California too,” my oblivious mother chatters on. “It worked out perfectly actually. Now you two can ride together, and your dad and I don’t have to worry about you alone in the middle of nowhere with a twenty-something-year-old car.

They think the car is going to be the problem here? It’s not the car that’s toxic to me. It’s him.

Reece Sullivan. My brother’s best friend. My parents’ “other son.”

Slowly I force myself to turn, and even though I’m prepped, the force of that ice-blue gaze still does something dangerous to me.

He winks, quick and cocky, and I suck in a breath, and I have to wonder . . .

I wonder if my parents would feel differently about their little plan if they knew that their makeshift mechanic is the same guy that popped my cherry six years earlier under their very roof.

And then broke my heart twenty-four hours later.

Lauren Layne is the USA Today bestselling author of more than a dozen romantic comedies. She lives in New York City with her husband (who was her high school sweetheart–cute, right?!) and plus-sized Pomeranian.
 
In 2011, she ditched her corporate career in Seattle to pursue a full-time writing
career in Manhattan, and never looked back.
In her ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a
Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.
For a  list of all her works, please be sure to check out her official website!
 

 

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Riveted by Jay Crownover – Excerpt Reveal

RIVETED - header banner

 

From the New York Times bestselling author of the Marked Men books comes the next installment in the Saints of Denver series.

 

Riveted - cover

Everyone else in Dixie Carmichael’s life has made falling in love look easy, and now she is ready for her own chance at some of that happily ever after. Which means she’s done pining for the moody, silent former soldier who works with her at the bar that’s become her home away from home. Nope. No more chasing the hot as heck thundercloud of a man and no more waiting for Mr. Right to find her; she’s going hunting for him…even if she knows her heart is stuck on its stupid infatuation with Dash Churchill.

Denver has always been just a pit stop for Church on his way back to rural Mississippi. It was supposed to be simple, uneventful, but nothing could have prepared him for the bubbly, bouncy redhead with doe eyes and endless curves. Now he knows it’s time to get out of Denver, fast. For a man used to living in the shadows, the idea of spending his days in the sun is nothing short of terrifying.

When Dixie and Church find themselves caught up in a homecoming overshadowed with lies and danger, Dixie realizes that while falling in love is easy, loving takes a whole lot more work…especially when Mr. Right thinks he’s all wrong for you.

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excerpt

Church

“You’ve been awfully quiet tonight.”

The southern drawl was lighter than mine, more lyrical and smooth. The Blue Hills of Kentucky rolled thick and unmistakable in Asa Cross’s twang as he looked at me steadily from behind the massive oak bar he was currently in the middle of wiping down.

“I talk when I have something to say.” No one would ever accuse me of being the chatty type. When I did choose to speak the Mississippi Delta was deep and locked thickly around all my words. My drawl was much slower than the blond bartender’s and far less practiced. Asa used his inflection and his southern charm to work whoever was sitting on the other side of the bar like they were one of his marks in a long con. He turned up the south in his voice to make hearts flutter and to fool drunks into thinking he was far less sharp than he was. His Kentucky-flavored tone was nothing more than a tool he used to his advantage whenever he needed it, while my unhurried inflection reminded me of a home I hadn’t seen in far too long. That was one of the reasons I never had much to say. Every time I opened my mouth the sound of my voice, like molasses over gravel and deep as the Mississippi River, took me back to a place I had been actively avoiding for over a decade.

I’d spent a little over ten years serving my country in various capacities while enlisted in the army. I’d been around different types of men from a million different walks of life. In all that time I’d never met anyone as hard to unravel as the man standing across from me. He had eyes the exact same color as the aged whiskey on the shelf behind him, and they were picking me apart with a perceptiveness that made me uneasy. I wasn’t used to being so transparent. Whatever shield I had up, whatever ironclad curtains I had pulled around me, Asa Cross saw right through them.

“You are usually quiet, but tonight you didn’t say a single word. You look like you have something on your mind.” His eyebrows lifted and that smirk on his face turned into a grin that I wanted to put my fist in. He wouldn’t be half as pretty as he was with missing teeth and a bloody nose. “Dixie had a date tonight. I figure you were worried about her since she’s been spending time with those internet guys over the last few months, and the bar is never the same on her nights off.”

My back teeth clicked together in aggravation and a low growl escaped my throat. My hands curled into fists at my sides without me being aware they were doing it and I could feel a furious heat climb up the back of my neck.

The idea of Dixie, sweet, sunny Dixie, out there with God only knew what kind of troll she was going to find on the internet made me want to destroy everything. I wanted to break the bar top in half. I wanted to throw chairs through windows. I wanted to smash all the meticulously placed bottles displayed behind Asa into smithereens. I wanted to dropkick the remaining few stragglers nursing their last-call drinks out the door and I wanted to get my hands on whoever had taken Dixie out tonight and throttle him within an inch of his life.

Logically, I knew there were decent, normal individuals using the internet to find love and sex . . . the sex being more likely. There were millions of people online dating and while I thought that was okay for them I refused to think it was an option Dixie should be utilizing. I hated the idea of her dating at all, but there was something about her meeting strangers, meeting men that hadn’t had the opportunity to see her in person before taking her out, that really rubbed me the wrong way.

Dixie Carmichael was the nicest girl I had ever met. She didn’t have a mean bone in her perfectly curvy and petite body. She was always smiling, always laughing, and there wasn’t a moment spent in her company where it didn’t feel like the sun was shining directly on you. She embodied warmth and care. Someone behind a computer monitor would never understand that. They would never feel the way her innate ability to make everything seem like it would be okay made the world seem like it was worth saving. There was a lot of bad shoved at us all on a day-to-day basis but somehow Dixie was a filter for it, and when you were around her it seemed like the only thing you could focus on was the good she let through.

She needed someone that could appreciate that. She needed a man that shined as bright as she did and that would hold her above the shit that was always trying to drag everyone else down. I doubted that guy was on Tinder or Bumble. In fact, I doubted that guy existed at all.

“I don’t keep track of her comings and goings.” I rubbed a hand over my mouth and watched as Asa’s eyebrows shot up and his lips twitched. I was a damn good liar. I lied to myself for years and years about the kind of man I was in order to convince myself that the choices I made were the right ones. But I was currently trying to lie to a man that was a professional liar, so it was no surprise that he saw right through the bullshit I was laying down.

“Ahh . . . I see. You have no interest in the fact she might be out there with a serial killer that wants to turn her pretty hair into a coat for his pet hamster?”

I glowered at him and crossed my arms over my chest. I was a big guy. Years of doing PT and boredom in the desert had led to a strenuous fitness routine I still maintained, partly out of habit and partly because when my muscles burned and I made myself sweat I could shut off all the other stuff that was crowding my head. Some of it nagging, niggling regret from the past, a whole lot of it new nightmares and realizations from my present. I had a couple inches in height on the Kentucky charmer and a whole lot more brute strength. Yet none of that or the glower that I was sure was stamped across my face kept Asa from keeping his stupid, sound advice to himself.

“Dixie is a good girl, she deserves someone who can give her that kind of good back.” I could see the surprise on Asa’s face as I finally gave him something that was wholeheartedly true.

He pushed off the bar and hollered that it was time for the last few customers to finish up. There were some grumbles but everyone left was a regular and as soon as the clock hit one thirty they would move towards the door without any hassle. I liked nights like this, where there were no fights to break up, no crying girls to console, no puke to clean off the floor, no amorous couples to shoo out of the bathrooms. Typically on a night like this I would watch Dixie scamper around shutting the bar down while pretending I wasn’t looking at her. I couldn’t help myself. My eyes were pulled to her and when she laughed or smiled I felt it in my gut like a punch. She did things to me that no woman had ever done to me before.

She made me want to smile and that alone was enough to have my feet itching to hit the road before I did something stupid, like fall in love or take her up on her blatant invitation into her bed. I wanted to fuck her, but I knew if I did it would fuck us both. She was nothing but good and when I got good in my life it always went bad, so I didn’t allow myself, or her, to go there. She shone as bright as the sun every single day but I was a man that knew all too well that too much time in the sun could lead to some serious burns.

I’d spent the last few months biting my tongue until it bled while she dated men that weren’t me and I went to bed alone each night wondering why I didn’t just pick up one of the barflies that hung around making it known they were ripe for the picking.

I’d never been the kind of guy that burned through women. My mother, and subsequently the women that stepped in to raise me after my mom was gone, Elma Mae and Caroline, taught me to understand that women’s hearts were fragile and you had to be careful with them. They tried to teach me how to take care of the good when you had it, how to respect it and earn it. I kept the lessons close because they were some of the only things I had left of the women that shared them with me. I never played with a woman’s body if I didn’t know for sure her heart was kept in a separate box somewhere. I liked my hands on soft tits and full hips, and silky legs wrapped around my back as much as any other guy. What I didn’t like was wiping away tears, explaining myself, and dramatic good-byes when I didn’t stick around after a good time. I was picky about who I went to bed with and I made sure they understood all my hard and fast rules about not committing or sticking around before I ever put my hands on them.

“Denver was just a pit stop.” I rubbed my hand over the top of my buzzed head and looked down at the wooden floor under my boots. “With everything that happened with Brite and Avett a few weeks ago I think it’s about time I put some space between me and the Mile High.” A friend and his daughter had recently run afoul of some really nasty people. My old commanding officer and current boss and I had moved in to help in any way we could, which ended with bullets and blood and some seriously pissed-off drug dealers. Holding a weapon in my hand and kicking in doors was second nature to me. I missed the fire of combat in my blood and the adrenaline coursing through my veins. I was made to fight, not to rest on my laurels. “Well past time I made my way home and tried to mend some fences.”

This was why Asa was such a good bartender. He pulled your story out of you whether you were planning on telling it or not, and he listened like he cared even if my story was told in fewer words than he was used to.

He nodded at me and pushed a rocks glass filled with amber liquor towards me. He typically drank Scotch at the end of the night, but I was a bourbon guy through and through. “I know all about mending fences, brother. Not a day goes by that I don’t have to dig a hole for a new post and string up some new wire.” He took a swig of his own drink and plastered that arrogant smirk back on his face. “Plus you might as well run before that girl you’ve been watching when she isn’t watching you fall in love with someone who ain’t you.”

I was going to hit him. My intent must have been clear because he put his glass down on the bar and lifted his hands up in a gesture of surrender. “My girlfriend is armed and she likes my pretty face the way it is. Keep that in mind, soldier.”

I slammed back the rest of the bourbon and let it burn its way down my throat. “Fuck you, Opie.”

He chuckled at me and turned to cash out the register behind him. “That’s why they say the truth hurts, Church.”

Before I had been Church I’d been Dash. And before I had been Dash I’d been Dashel. It was already hard enough being a kid with less than white skin and with parents in an interracial relationship, but having a name that was as uncommon as mine down in the Deep South was fuel on an already burning fire. I’d hated it growing up and even with shortening it to Dash I’d still struggled with it. But now I’d been Church for a long time, and he was a man that didn’t give any kind of shit what anyone else thought of his name. I’d earned that nickname through service and blood. It wasn’t a name that was given to me. It was one I had taken and made my own. Elma Mae was going to hate it and she was still going to call me Dashel even when I begged her not to but there was a part of me that couldn’t wait to hear the stubborn old woman tell me, I’ll call you by the name your mother picked out for you, son. That’s the name she wanted for you and you should respect it. I should, but there were a lot of things I should have done to make my mom proud that I didn’t do.

The truth Asa was laying down did hurt, because there was no hiding from him that part of the reason I was ready to bolt was because I really couldn’t stomach the idea of watching someone else take Dixie’s heart.

“Didn’t ask you for the truth.” I stuck my head out the front door and watched as the last two bar patrons climbed into their Uber. I locked the front door and shut off most of the lights and made my way back to the bar.

I liked the operation Rome had set up here. I liked the people, both the ones who worked for him and the ones he served, and I liked that the atmosphere was usually festive but pretty mellow. On the nights that heads needed to be cracked and tempers needed to be tamed I enjoyed the exertion and physicality of that as well, but I wasn’t meant to be a bouncer. I had too much training, too much experience, and frankly too many demons that needed an outlet, to babysit drunks and party girls for the long haul. It was time for me to stop drifting.

Asa finished up with the money and shot a glance at his phone. I could tell by the genuine smile that crossed his face and the way his gaze sparked that his gorgeous redheaded girlfriend was the one behind the message. Royal Hastings, the pretty Denver policewoman had recently moved in with the annoying southerner and it wouldn’t surprise me if she ended up with a ring on her finger before the year was out. The cop and the con had something special going on even if I firmly believed it was doomed to fail.

“Most folks don’t ask for the truth but that doesn’t stop me from giving it to them.” He gave me a look that told me if I was any kind of man I would take that truth he was so fond of and do something smart with it. I didn’t bother to tell him good and

I didn’t really see eye to eye. We made our way to the back door after a quick stop at the office to lock the money up in the safe. Asa scribbled a note to Rome and then quickly checked the security cameras. He typed out a message on his phone and by the time we hit the parking lot at the back of the bar a brand-new Toyota 4Runner was pulling in with a smiling redhead behind the wheel.

Asa clapped a hand on my shoulder and gave me a look that burned with understanding and seriousness. I felt like he was speaking directly into my soul when he told me quietly, “The real truth is, I let something good go, so I know how that feels. Got it back and would move heaven and earth to keep it by my side, so I know exactly what you’re walking away from, soldier. Be smarter than I was and don’t let all that goodness slip through your fingers.” He turned around and walked backwards for a second while flashing me that shit-eating grin of his. “It’s always better to be warm than it is to suffer the cold, Church.”

He moved towards the SUV and I had to look away when he leaned into the driver’s side window to kiss his girl. There was so much intimacy there, so much passion that it made everything I swore I knew about love and togetherness pull against the reins that held it tight.

I gave a halfhearted wave as Royal honked the horn at me and pulled out of the parking lot, then made my way over to my Harley. It was still nice enough weather to ride, another reason I needed to get my ass in gear and head south. In a few weeks it was going to be too cold to have the bike on the road and I wasn’t interested in putting the beauty on a trailer and driving her like some expensive piece of luggage back to Mississippi.

I was swinging my leg over the chrome-and-leather beast when my phone vibrated in my back pocket. It was after two in the morning so I knew anything buzzing through at this time of night couldn’t be good. Considering I’d recently shot Denver’s top drug supplier’s right-hand man and put down another one of his henchmen for good, I was dreading seeing what was waiting for me on the display.

It was almost as bad as I expected it to be. The number was one I’d been ignoring since I landed in Denver months ago. It was a number that belonged to a man that I owed more than some simple conversation or a handful of words. It was a call I would have continued to ignore if it hadn’t come in the middle of the night and on the heels of three other calls throughout the day that I had turned a blind eye to.

It was time to stop running from my past. It was time to man up.

It was time to be a better man, the man the person calling had tried his best to raise me to be.

“Hey, Julian.” I rested the Harley back on the kickstand and ran a hand over my face. I could practically feel the shock wafting across the phone line. He hadn’t expected me to answer and that made me a special kind of asshole.

“Dash.” His voice was even deeper and coarser than mine. People often told me I sounded like Johnny Cash but Julian Churchill really had the Man in Black’s rough growl embedded throughout his tone. “I didn’t think you were going to answer.” I sighed and felt like the wild five-year-old he had tried to wrangle all over again. “Been busy. Took a while to settle in and get used to sleeping without bombs going off overhead.”

He didn’t say anything for a long minute and when he spoke I could tell he was trying really hard to keep the hurt and censure out of his deep voice. “You have a perfectly good bed here and last I heard there weren’t any bombs in Lowry.” Lowry was the small town where I had been born and raised, just outside of Tupelo, Mississippi. There weren’t bombs there but there was a bucket load of memories that blasted me with emotional shrapnel that hurt worse than the kind I’d had surgically removed from my skin.

“I needed time, Jules.”

“Had more than enough time, son. You need to come home.” I bristled just like I always did when he tried to tell me what to do. I thought I’d squashed that urge after we stood side by side and lowered my mom into the ground but there was something about him talking to me like I should know better that always made me feel like an unruly kid.

“Planning on it. Have to tie up a few loose ends around here, and I have to make sure I don’t leave my friend that helped me out in a lurch.” Rome would send me on my way with a pat on the back and a foot in my ass if he knew the real reason I was hiding in Colorado instead of hightailing it home. He was understanding, but the man was all about family first and he wouldn’t abide the way I’d been avoiding mine for the last decade or so. I was a coward and I didn’t want a man I’d been in the trenches with, a man I would die for and knew would die for me, to know just how deeply that weakness ran.

“Dash.” There was a sigh and then Julian cleared his throat, so I knew he was struggling to keep his emotions in check. “Elma Mae had an accident.”

I almost dropped the phone as I bolted up from my lounging position on the bike. “What do you mean she had an accident?” My fingers tightened around the phone to the point that my knuckles hurt and the blood rushing furiously between my ears made hearing his response difficult.

“She was carrying her laundry in off the line and tripped going up the stairs. She fell backwards and busted her hip. A neighbor heard the commotion and ran to help. They had to airlift her to the hospital in Tupelo. She’s also got a dislocated shoulder and a sprained wrist. She’s back in the Lowry hospital now recovering and she should be going home at the end of the week.”

“Jesus.” Elma Mae was chasing down eighty if she was a day. None of us knew her exact age and she refused to tell. She would just smile at us and tell us we kept her young. Those kinds of injuries were serious for someone in their prime. In a woman Elma’s age they were life threatening. “She gonna be all right?”

“Elma is a tough old bird. It’ll take more than a tumble to keep her down. She’s been asking about you.”

Well, if that wasn’t just a fucking red-hot poker right through the guts. It was also a slap across the face with the reality of everything I’d purposely been avoiding and denying for way too long.

“I bought a Harley. Gonna have to ride it home, so I’ll be there in a couple days.” My homecoming was happening sooner than I’d planned, but there was no way I couldn’t be there for the woman that had always been my true north. When nothing else in my life made sense there was Elma Mae. She was the only safe place I had ever known and if she needed me I was going to be there to return the favor. I owed the woman everything and the fact I’d waited so long to see her after years of deployment was a startlingly clear reminder of why I was correct and considerate in staying the hell away from Dixie.

She lived in the light and I was far more comfortable hiding in the dark.

“I’ll let her know. That will make her day.” He paused for a second, which made me brace for whatever was coming next. “She mentioned a girl. Elma told me the reason you weren’t in any hurry to come home from Denver was because of a girl. That true?”

Son of a bitch. The truth might hurt but the lies I told, and they were more gray than white, were going to outright kill me. “There’s a girl.” And there was, but she wasn’t entirely the reason I wasn’t ready to face Julian or anyone else back in Lowry. She had been one of my reasons for sticking around Denver longer than I’d planned. She was an excuse that would buy me time and one that wasn’t entirely untrue.

“Do me a favor and see if you can bring her with you. Elma would love nothing more than to see you happy, to know you’re finally settling down and moving past the things that happened with your mom and with Caroline. You bring your girl home with you and give all of us some peace of mind. Make an old woman happy, Dash. You owe Elma a few years where she doesn’t have to worry about you catching bullets or ending up alone.”

Shit. I rubbed my temples and kicked at the loose gravel under the soles of my boots. “I’ll see what I can do.” That was bullshit. Dixie would drop everything and come with me if I explained the situation. She was too nice and too sweet to tell me no. Elma Mae was going to goddamn love her after she gave her a ration of hell in order to make sure she was the right girl for her boy.

“If the girl cares about you then she’ll figure out a way to be here. If she can’t figure it out, she isn’t worth your time. Come home, son, we miss you.”

I missed home, too, but I could do without the memories and reminders that had kept me away since the day I signed my life away to my country.

It was my turn to sigh. “I’ll see you soon, Jules.” He hung up and I wanted to kick myself because after all these years and all the time and effort he put into raising me I still couldn’t call the man Dad. He deserved the title, after all it was his last name I carried around with me, not that of the man who had knocked my mom up and run. He had earned it much like I had earned my name, but whenever I tried to say it the word got stuck and I fell back on something that seemed less important. It felt like I was fooling God and everyone under the sun about just how important Julian was to me if I refused to call him the only thing he had ever been to me. I was trying to trick fate so Jules didn’t end up the way so many others I loved had.

I was also going home, and I was going to put some sunshine in my pocket and take it with me.

 

RIVETED - Preorder graphic

Jay Crownover continues her Saints of Denver series with Riveted, available February 14th, 2017

Give yourself a Valentine’s Day gift in advance…Preorder and fill out the form here: https://a.pgtb.me/t0JkQX

Pre-order Riveted today and on February 14th, you’ll also receive a glossy Saints of Denver poster and an exclusive first-look at Chapters 1 and 2 of Avenged, her forthcoming Mackenzie Family novella.

Avenged combines the grit of Saints of Denver series with the all-out heat of The Point series with a mind-blowing, mystery, yet-to-be-revealed, couple combining both of these worlds. Be one of the first to find out who it is, pre-order Riveted today.

Posters will be mailed the week of February 14th and Avenged chapters will arrive via email.

 

 

Jay Crownover - headshotAbout Jay Crownover:

Jay Crownover is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Marked Men, The Point, and the Saints of Denver series. Like her characters, she is a big fan of tattoos. She loves music and wishes she could be a rock star, but since she has no aptitude for singing or instrument playing, she’ll settle for writing stories with interesting characters that make the reader feel something. She lives in Colorado with her three dogs.

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My Favorite books of 2016

These are the books that I would recommend highly that I have read this year. I read 181 last year and these are the 16 books I enjoyed the most. They are in the order that I read them in and not sorted by by favorites. For more books that I enjoyed last year please check out this list.

Built – Jay Crownover

Studio portrait of young bearded man --- Image by © pinkypills/Corbis

Sometimes you have to tear everything down to build something new…

Sayer Cole is frozen inside. At least, that’s what it’s felt like for as long as she can remember. She’s yet to let anyone past her icy exterior – and the one guy she thinks might melt her heart couldn’t possibly be interested in someone so uptight.

Rough, hard and hot-as-hell, Zeb Fuller has rebuilt his life and his construction business since protecting his family sent him to jail all those years ago. His elegant client, Sayer, makes him feel like a Neanderthal in denim, but despite the many hints that he’s been dropping to get to know her better, she seems oblivious to his charms.

Just as things finally start to heat up, Zeb’s past comes back to haunt him and he needs Sayer’s professional help to right a wrong and to save more than himself. As these opposites dig in for the fight of their lives, fire and ice collide in an unstoppable explosion of steam…

goodreads

review

5 Stars

I don’t think anyone can top Captain No Fun as my favorite book boyfriend, but Mr. Fix-It came pretty damn close. This was an amazing story all around and is now one of my all time favorites. I cannot wait for the rest of this series.

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Listen To Me – Kristen Proby

Listen-to-Me-cover

Seduction is quickly becoming the hottest new restaurant in Portland, and Addison Wade is proud to claim 1/5 of the credit. She’s determined to make it a success and can’t think of a better way to bring in new customers than live music. But when former rock star Jake Keller swaggers through the doors to apply for the weekend gig, she knows she’s in trouble. Addie instantly recognizes him—his posters were plastered all over her bedroom walls in high school—he’s all bad boy…exactly her type and exactly what she doesn’t need.Jake Keller walked away from the limelight five years ago and yearns to return to what’s always driven him: the music. If he gets to work for a smart-mouthed, funny-as-hell bombshell, all the better. But talking Addie into giving him the job is far easier than persuading her that he wants more than a romp in her bed. Just when she begins to drop her walls, Jake’s past finally catches up with him.

Will Addie be torn apart once again or will Jake be able to convince her to drown out her doubts and listen to her heart?

goodreads

review5 Stars

Jake Keller is by far my favorite Kristen Proby character, but Addison comes in a close second. One of my favorite parts of a Kristen Proby story is the close knit groups and their relationships with each other. I am looking forward to seeing a lot more from the Seduction family and the amazing strong women she has created.

I have now read this book 3 times since it was released and I am still at a loss for words. I loved every aspect of this book so much I can’t decide where to start and how to convey my overwhelming love for this book. I’ll leave it to I wholeheartedly recommend you pick up this book. It has all the swoons, all the banter and all the steam you would expect from a Kristen Proby novel and then some.

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Dirty Ugly Toy – K. Webster

Her time is over.
Things are looking up.

She’s dirty and ugly.
He’s wicked but handsome.

Six months to toy with her.
Six months of vacation and a ton of money.

I’ll hurt her beyond repair.
I’ve been through much worse.

She’s difficult to control and doesn’t obey.
I’m done submitting to anyone or anything in this life.

I should hate her.
I should hate him.

The game has changed.
I will win.

goodreads

review

This book is not for everyone, but it was so beautiful, haunting, heartbreaking, terrifying and intriguing that I could not put it down. I read it in one day and already want to start again. This book was more than a book, it was an experience that I would happily undertake again and again.

My Thoughts
From the second I read the synopsis of this book I was hooked. I love dark and twisty reads, so this was right up my alley. I didn’t think that I would fall so hard for Braxton or Jessica. These two broken people found each other in the most messed up of ways, but ended up being better than they could have imagined. For all the darkness and rawness of the story there was an underlying goodness in both Jessica and Braxton that called to me and made me abandon all responsibility and read through this book from start to finish in one day. I highly recommend this book if you want something that is a little different, a lot beautiful, and a little ugly all at the same time

I pre-ordered this book because of the synopsis and I was extremely happy I did.

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This is WAR, Baby and This is LOVE, Baby by K. Webster

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My life had a plan. Until he invaded it and stole it all away. My captor took me and I became a pawn.His strategy changed and he sent me away to WAR, because money is everything in this world.

In my WAR, though, I found peace.

I couldn’t help but find love where I least expected it, with a man who lived a battle every day of his life
…all inside his head.

But then my captor came back for me.
Yet, this time, battle lines had been drawn and I was protected.

So we thought.
Even though my WAR was raging,
my captor would fight to the death.

The good guys always win, right?
Not always.

All’s fair in love and WAR, right?
Not this time.goodreads

review

5 Stars

As soon as I finished this book I wrote this on Goodreads “I have no words. This book was so incredible I don’t know how to write a review. As soon as I can gather my thoughts about the amazingness I just read, I will write a full review.” In some ways I still feel like that. How am I going to review this and express the amazingness without being spoilery? I will say that it is not an easy read and please heed the following warning : “This is War, Baby is a dark romance. A really dark one. So dark you’re going to wish you had a flashlight to see yourself to the end and someone to hold your hand. Human trafficking, dubious consent, and strong sexual themes that could trigger emotional distress are found in this story. This story is NOT for everyone.”

My Thoughts

This book starts off like any romance involving high school age people, but you are quickly thrown for a loop. This part of the story was seriously hard to read, but at the same time I was compelled to keep reading because of Baylee. I loved her character from the start. She was strong, smart and seeing the events through her eyes made the story a little bit easier to read.

So the basics… she was kidnapped by a crazy, intense, messed up man who has claimed her as his own. He will stop at nothing to keep her, and that is where he is truly terrifying. Enter War the man she was sold to. This part of the story was still hard to read but in a different way. War is a broken man that also happens to be a gorgeous rich young man who has a slew of mental issues and is in a prison of his fears and obsession.

War… I loved War. His obsessions were debilitating and it was heartbreaking. Ever time we got to see the world through his POV I fell a little harder for him. It was so real and brutal and beautiful that your heart breaks while you swoon. They are an old couple at first but as they start sharing and trusting each other they from something that neither of them expects but both welcome. She is his peace and he is her savior, until it is all wrecked again by her kidnapper and tormentor. At the end we are left with more questions that we started with, but it has been a week since I read this book and I still can’t get these characters out of my head, luckily there is not a very long wait for book two. I cannot wait to revisit these characters and get answers.

I highly recommend this book if you can handle a little darker of a read and some uncomfortable situations. I was hooked from the first word and could not put this down. I felt compelled to finish this book and am so happy that I did. K. Webster’s writing in this book is phenomenal. She can take a monster and make you feel for him, and at the same time fear and loathe him. Everything about this story felt so real and raw and beautiful that I have a feeling this will be one of my go to books.

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My War was over and I had lost. My captor reminded me I was nothing more than his pawn.
His strategy never changed…it was always me.
But what he didn’t know was that LOVE always wins.In my War, I’d found not only peace
but LOVE as well.I’d been through a battlefield with my War and LOVE was what brought us to the other side.
Our LOVE was beautiful and pure. Undying.My captor thinks he has won this war. That I will LOVE him.
What he doesn’t know is this time, I’m the one with a strategy. I’m always thinking several moves ahead of him, my War taught me that.I will outsmart him and find peace again.
This is a war I will win.
My LOVE will conquer all.goodreads

review

5 Stars

I just finished this book and I have no words. Of all the things I could imagine would happen in this book, somehow K. Webster was able make the perfect ending I didn’t know I needed.
Every word, every feeling, every second of this book was everything.
The amazing story weaving between War and Peace was enough to shatter your heart, but was also so powerful and all encompassing that it put you back together again, piece by piece, word by word. I loved every second of this journey and highly recommend picking up this series if you want something that has a dark side, but also has enough light to lead you through.

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Hate to Love You and Love to Hate You by Isabelle Richards

Opposites in every way, Chase and Arianna have been bitter rivals since childhood. Constantly in competition, they fight incessantly, making it nearly impossible for them to be in the same room with each other. Until they slept together.
Sex changes everything.
In one emotional evening, they go from enemies to lovers. Hate quickly evolves into passionate lust, but old habits die hard. The love growing between them can’t erase a lifetime of animosity. The two quickly fall back into old routines of spite and vengeance, and their relationship crumbles under the weight of their deep-seated distrust.
Chase and Arianna spend the next two years on opposite sides of the globe, avoiding each other at all costs. Despite the lies they tell themselves, neither one is ready to let go. Even though they are both engaged to other people, they can’t find it in their hearts to forgive each other or to move forward.
A family emergency calls Arianna home, where they have no choice but to face each other again. Will they finally admit the truth, or will they remain forever trapped between love and hate?

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Some connections are so powerful they will not be denied. Despite doing everything in their power to fight their feelings, Chase and Arianna decide to give their love a second chance. They hope that the long, painful journey back to each other will have taught them not to make the same mistakes again. This time they’ll get it right. All they need is a little time for the wounds to heal.
Unfortunately, life doesn’t stop just because love is in the air. Just as they begin to reconcile, their relationship is bombarded by crisis after crisis throwing their lives into a tailspin. Had they learned from their past, Chase and Arianna would find a way to lean on each other during trying times. But some people never learn.
Instead of revealing their strength, each challenge exposes their vulnerabilities. The cracks in their relationship turn into chasms as they let each other down time and time again. Hurt and betrayal overshadow the love, and they slip back into old habits. Hiding behind hatred for each other is much easier than facing the truth.
Will they find their way back to each other or will they stay trapped in the space between love and hate?

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Edge of Chaos and East of Redemption by Molly E. Lee

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Blake Caster has been in an emotionally abusive relationship with Justin for so long, she can’t tell what is normal anymore, and so she clings to the one thing that is solidly hers—her passion for extreme weather.

Three years into her Meteorology degree, Blake meets professional storm chaser, Dash Lexington, who is as gorgeous as he is daring. Instantly recognizing her passion and skills in analyzing weather data, he makes a spot for her on his tight-knit storm chasing team. Dash and Blake form a fast friendship and it forces her to realize just how toxic her relationship with Justin is. She can’t deny the lightning-worthy chemistry she has with Dash or how her heart stalls every time he gets too close to a tornado.

With each chase and the cherished moments with Dash, Blake discovers her own self-worth and gains the strength to end things with Justin for good. But he won’t go easily. As Blake tries to sever ties with one man, she fears she’ll lose the other to his dangerous obsession—and she doesn’t know if she’ll be enough to save him from the impending storm that could end them all.

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East of RedemptionFINAL-high

Easton Wells has spent years burying his guilt by digging up some of the world’s most renowned treasures while surviving the dangerous terrains in which they’re located—all captured for television. When his producers threaten to axe the show, he has no choice but to turn to the last person he still trusts—the girl he left behind.

Rain Walker has made a name for herself documenting wild and endangered animals, and the last voice she expects to hear while shooting in South Africa is Easton’s. He’s more gorgeous than she remembers, but the pain in her heart is as fresh as ever. They’d once planned on spending the rest of their lives together, but after her father’s tragic death while on expedition in Israel with him, Easton bailed on their future together without an explanation. It’s been nine years, and yet the intense love they shared seems only a moment ago.

When he asks her to film his latest treasure hunt, Rain wants to turn him down instantly. But when he explains it’s to the same cave that swallowed her father, she can’t say no. She wants to experience the last place her father was alive, and she’s beyond curious about what happened to the boy she used to love.

They’ve got two weeks to locate a treasure that’s been lost for centuries, or Easton will lose the one thing in his life he’s come to depend on. As their old passion is reignited—and dark secrets uncovered—they face the extreme terrain of the mountain range that threatens them at every turn. As more than the wildlife and sharp drop-offs tries to kill them, Rain starts to question if the legendary treasure they seek—the same one her father had died trying to unearth—is truly meant to be found, or if some things, including their feelings for each other, are better left buried.

goodreads

review

5 Stars

This book kept me on the edge of my seat from the very first word. I was packed full of action, intrigue, mystery, love, steamy moments and so much fun to read.

My Thoughts

I’m going to keep this a short and spoiler free as I can, because this is one of those books that you have to experience for yourself in order to really get it. This book has such depth, emotion and heart stopping adventure, that you almost forget you are reading a romance novel. (Yes, there are some steamy scenes) It’s this total immersion in the world that draws me to Molly E. Lee’s books. She has this uncanny way of combining all these elements into an all engrossing story that makes you forget everything other than the story unfolding on the pages.

The first page will have you hooked, but by the end you will be in love with this world, these characters, and the hunt for treasure. I knew going in that it had an Indiana Jones vibe, and I was not disappointed. It’s full of adventure, humor, a perilous journey, survival skills, and a second chance with your first love. It is a very fast-paced read that will keep you turning the pages and keep you on the edge of your seat to see what’s going to happen next with Easton and Rain. I highly recommend the Love on the Edge series for anyone that’s looking for a different kind romance that stands head and shoulders above the others.

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Good Girl by Lauren Layne

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Jenny Dawson moved to Nashville to write music, not get famous. But when her latest record goes double platinum, Jenny’s suddenly one of the town’s biggest stars—and the center of a tabloid scandal connecting her with a pop star she’s barely even met. With paparazzi tracking her every move, Jenny flees to a remote mansion in Louisiana to write her next album. The only hiccup is the unexpected presence of a brooding young caretaker named Noah, whose foul mouth and snap judgments lead to constant bickering—and serious heat.

Noah really should tell Jenny that he’s Preston Noah Maxwell Walcott, the owner of the estate where the feisty country singer has made her spoiled self at home. But the charade gives Noah a much-needed break from his own troubles, and before long, their verbal sparring is indistinguishable from foreplay. But as sizzling nights give way to quiet pillow talk, Noah begins to realize that Jenny’s almost as complicated as he is. To fit into each other’s lives, they’ll need the courage to face their problems together—before the outside world catches up to them.goodreads

review

5 Stars

It’s no secret that I love Lauren Layne books, but this book is so much more than that. Every word, every page was special. It was so beautifully written, full of heart, heat and the things we expect (and some we don’t, in a good way) from a Lauren Layne novel, that i was blown away.

My Thoughts

Jenny Dawson has been dubbed America’s Sweetheart by the media and hounded by the paparazzi. I love that she is so down to earth and a still a country girl at heart. It was fun seeing her prove everyone wrong about the preconceptions they had about her. Actually I loved everything about Jenny. If I could have a book character be a real friend I would definitely choose Jenny Dawson. She is smart, funny, fun, not afraid to get dirty, and full of sass. And Noah talk about a dreamy brooding hero.

I loved every second of this book so much I finished and immediately started reading again. Even the side characters of this book are amazing. I highly recommend picking this book up, you will not regret it.

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Style by Chelsea M. Cameron

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Kyle Blake likes plans. So far, they’re pretty simple: Finish her senior year of high school, head off to a good college, find a cute boyfriend, graduate, get a good job, get married, the whole heterosexual shebang. Nothing is going to stand in the way of that plan. Not even Stella Lewis.

Stella Lewis also has a plan: Finish her senior year as cheer captain, go to college, finally let herself flirt with (and maybe even date) a girl for the first time and go from there.

Fate has other plans for Kyle and Stella when they’re paired up in their AP English class and something between them ignites. It’s confusing and overwhelming and neither of them know what to do about it. One thing they do know is that their connection can’t be ignored. The timing just isn’t right.

But is there ever a good time for falling in love?goodreads

review

5 Stars

I loved this book. It was adorable, sweet, and a great read.

My Thoughts

I loved this book. It was adorable, sweet, and a great read. It was nice to have a sweet coming of age story with very little angst and a happy ending. This book was hard to put down. It was a beautiful story of first love, figuring out relationships in High School and finding yourself.

“What I DO know is that I can’t go back in time and put a book in my hands, but I CAN put it in someone else’s.” Thank you for writing for this book, Chelsea M. Cameron for all the people that need these words and all those that support and love them unconditionally.

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Restored by Kate Canterbary

Restored

Can a reformed player ever truly play by someone else’s rules?

Sam Walsh has finally put an end to decades of self-destruction, turned over a healthy new leaf, and now he’s ready to call himself a married man. But love and marriage are only the beginning, and life is about to get much more complicated.

Will tying the knot tie down a free spirit?

Tiel Desai never imagined herself getting married again, and before she can blink, she’s swept up into the Walsh wedding whirlwind. If that chaos isn’t enough, she’s also busy winning over her future in-laws, grappling with a bumpy adjustment to her new job, and staying afloat when a string of disappointments hit.

They’re building a future, but can they ever fully demolish the past?

Sam and Tiel beat back their demons and learned to love each other, but love might not be enough to solve every problem that crawls their way.goodreads

 review

5 Stars

I fell in love with Sam and Tiel all over again in this book. This book felt organic like you were checking in with old friends instead of reading a sequel just for a sequel’s sake. Restored had it all, ups and downs, serious steamy moments, laugh out loud antics, incredible banter and a whole lot of love. It will make you break out the tissues one moment and laugh out loud the next and was the perfect combination of each. This is what Kate Canterbary does best and what makes her one of my top auto buy authors.

My Thoughts

At the end of Necessary Restorations we got a happy for now, but it felt like these two still had something else to say. I am thrilled that Restored picked up right where Necessary Restorations left off and we get to hear the rest of their story. Being privy to the evolution of this relationship felt like you were spying on the couple next door at times. It was so real and so beautifully written that these characters feel like they could be real. That is what makes this book so special and what makes this one of my top reads of 2016.

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Sparking The Fire – Kate Meader

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

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

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

goodreads

review

I have been intrigued by Wyatt Fox since I read Rekindle the Flame in an anthology before Flirting With Fire came out. He is the strong silent type, but also fiercely protective of his family and sticks to the background. I was not disappointed. Wyatt was so much more than I imagined and I loved every second of his story.

My Thoughts

I loved the way this book started. We got to see a side of Wyatt we haven’t seen before and it was refreshing. I loved both Wyatt and Molly in this story so much. Molly is a firecracker, but still reeling from public scandal, and Wyatt is dealing with a whole host of guilt and overprotectiveness. When these two collide the sexual tension is off the charts. You can feel the draw they have on each other and I loved every second.

These two fit in every way you could imagine. She makes him laugh and smile more, he grounds her and protects her, even when she doesn’t want it. I loved they way they brought each other out of their self-imposed shells and how the Dempsey’s welcome everyone into the fold. It was so fun getting to catch up with the other couple’s throughout this story. I highly recommend this series, but in particular this book. It was so much fun to read, had so much heart, and was off the charts steamy. I am sad to see it go, but happy I can revisit the Dempsey’s anytime I want.

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HIgh Sided – LP Dover

Wild, reckless, and fast.

That’s how I raced until a fatal accident on the track ruined my riding career. I had no choice but to leave that life behind; at least, until now. My name is Logan Chandler, one of the best FBI agents in the country. When an old friend calls for help and winds up dead, I take matters into my own hands. In order to do that, I have to go back to my past, back to the racetrack and to the one girl I never thought I’d see again . . . Kassidy Bennett.

She’s the key to solving it all, but bringing her in could put her in grave danger. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize she was already there. To save her, I have to put everything on the line. It’s a race against time, a race to the death, and only one will make it to the end.

goodreads

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Out Of Love – RC Boldt

Foster Kavanaugh, former Navy SEAL, knows what it’s like to be the top dog, the man in charge, the one calling the shots. Now that he’s running his own security consulting firm, not much has changed.

Except the curvy blonde he hired as his office manager.
Noelle Davis has been through the damn ringer. Swearing off men after escaping a toxic relationship, she’s grateful for a fresh start—new job included. Except her job isn’t tranquil and calm. In fact, it’s quite the opposite because her boss is the most infuriating man on the planet.

And, not to mention, sexy as hell.
Foster has limits. Rules. No attachments allowed because he doesn’t do love—and Noelle Davis foiled that plan and took a red pen to his list of rules. With her smart mouth and quick witted banter, he found the woman beginning to creep past his defenses.

When circumstances put Noelle in a perilous position, the first person to come to her rescue is none other than Foster Kavanaugh. She gets to see the man in action—not as her aggravating boss, but the man who will stop at nothing to keep her safe.

The same man who makes her want to reconsider her self-imposed embargo of men.

The man she wants to get to know now that she’s seen another side of him.

The man who makes her want…more.

But is more possible when you’re OUT OF LOVE?

goodreads

review

4.5-Stars

 

I knew Foster and Noelle’s story would be one of my favorites from their banter in the last few books, But I was completely blown away. This book had it all, fun back and forth banter, a strong smart heroine, steamy sexy times, and a bad ass alpha with a soft spot for Disney movies.

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Some One Like You – Lauren Layne

Sometimes you have to tear everything down to build something new…

Sayer Cole is frozen inside. At least, that’s what it’s felt like for as long as she can remember. She’s yet to let anyone past her icy exterior – and the one guy she thinks might melt her heart couldn’t possibly be interested in someone so uptight.

Rough, hard and hot-as-hell, Zeb Fuller has rebuilt his life and his construction business since protecting his family sent him to jail all those years ago. His elegant client, Sayer, makes him feel like a Neanderthal in denim, but despite the many hints that he’s been dropping to get to know her better, she seems oblivious to his charms.

Just as things finally start to heat up, Zeb’s past comes back to haunt him and he needs Sayer’s professional help to right a wrong and to save more than himself. As these opposites dig in for the fight of their lives, fire and ice collide in an unstoppable explosion of steam…

goodreads

review

5 Stars

Wow. I knew Lincoln’s story was going to be special, but this was way more than I expected. It is safe to say that Lincoln is my new favorite Stiletto/Oxford man. There is so much more to the charismatic ladies man that we have grown to love over the course of this series and it really was special to peel back all of those layers and see the “real” Lincoln.

My Thoughts

From the other books in this series we have met the infamous ladies man Lincoln Mathis, but what you see is not always what you get. I had a feeling this book was going to pull out all of the stops and bring all of the feels, and I was not disappointed. The man behind the reputation is incredible, his story is moving, and his journey is both heartbreaking and endearing all at the same time.

Daisy is Emma’s twin sister, but is so wholly and completely different from Emma that if they didn’t look-alike you would never know. Neither of them are what they show the world, so it is no surprise that they become fast friends. Lincoln lets her see behind the veil so to speak and both of their worlds change from that moment on.

I loved every second of this book. I forced myself to slow down several times so that I could savor the story a little more and have it last just a little longer. After 2 readings I still think this is my favorite Lauren Layne book. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and highly recommend it if you like strong characters that grab you from page 1 and don’t let go until long after you have finished the story.

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The Spire – Kate Canterbary

Not all those who wander are lost.

Rebel, runner, recluse, rich girl.
Nine years ago, Erin Walsh ran away from everything.

Home.
Family.
Secrets.
Tragedy.
Herself.

The only permanence in her life is catastrophe.

She travels from country to country, chasing disaster, teasing fire, playing with poison. She guards against real connections, and shuns the only family she has left.

She holds everyone—even her siblings—at a mile-long distance. It’s the only way to protect herself.

But she can’t protect herself from him.

He’s the ice to her fire, and he’s willing to sacrifice everything to bring her home.

goodreads

review

5 Stars

I honestly have no words for this book. It was such a beautiful journey home. If I could give it all of the stars I would. So for now I am using GIFs to convey my feelings for this amazing book.
The book starts and we are all:
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And then there is quite a bit of this:
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With a little bit of this:
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And this:
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And this:
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And this:
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And a whole lot of this:
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Retreat – Jay Crownover

Every once in a while, you need to get away from it all.

I was a woman on the edge, shaken and shattered after a breakup that felt like it tore my entire world apart.

My best friend, sick of watching me drown in misery and melancholy, harassed me until I agreed to go with her on a week-long wilderness retreat.

She promised days spent bonding and getting in touch with our inner bad-asses.
It was supposed to be all about the two of us roughing it and making do with the bare minimum. She assured me we were going to be pushed to our limits in ways that were unimaginable. Neither one of us could have ever guessed just how right she was.

Nowhere in the glossy brochure did it say anything about the fact I was going to have to battle the insufferable but deliciously rugged and sexy trail guide instead of the elements. The brochure also forgot to mention the part that warned when you left civilization behind, there was no place to pack your inhibitions and fears.

I was told that I would be facing a week where the only thing I should expect was the unexpected. However, no one mentioned that I was going to have to fight for my life…and my heart as soon as I ventured into the unknown.

I was a pro at hiding from my feelings but when it came time to face a real threat, one that could change everything, I learned I was more of a no surrender, no retreat kind of girl.

Retreat is a standalone novel, the first in the Getaway series which centers on the hardheaded and brokenhearted Warner brothers and the women that dare to love them.

These boys are very good at putting the wild in wilderness.

goodreads

review

5 Stars

I was hooked from the first word of this story. This is so unlike anything I have read from Jay before, but she knocked it out of the park with this one. Cowboys, suspense, action, bad ass heroines, grumpy alpha males and super steamy scenes make this book one of my top reads of 2016.

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Real Good Love by Meghan March – Now Available

Real Duet complete duet

real-good-love-amazonFrom USA Today bestselling author Meghan March comes a sexy new duet with a hero you won’t want to miss.

I’ve had my fair share of bad boys, but nothing prepared me for what it was like to be with a real good man.

Logan Brantley changed everything.

Somewhere along the way, what started as a fling became the best part of my life.

He makes me want all the things I’ve never had, like forever and happily ever after, but nothing worth having comes easily.

Everyone is betting on us to fail, but I’m ready to fight for this real good love.

Real Good Love is the conclusion of the Real Duet and should be read following Real Good Man.

iBooks | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Amazon CA | BN | Kobo

 

real-good-man-amazonFrom USA Today bestselling author Meghan March comes a sexy new duet. We’ve all had the bad boys, now it’s time for a Real Good Man.

Fall for a woman over text messages? No way in hell.

Reality can never be as good at the fantasy, right?

Wrong. It’s better.

Banner Regent is smart, funny, and she’s so far out of my league, she might as well be royalty.

I’m a mechanic from Kentucky. She’s a New York City party girl.

We were never supposed to meet, but one text started something neither of us saw coming.

How do you seduce the woman who already has everything?

Show her what it’s like to be with a real good man.

Real Good Man is book one of the Real Duet. Logan and Banner’s story will conclude in Real Good Love, releasing January 17, 2017.

iBooks | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Amazon CA | Kobo | Google Play | Audible | Paperback

 

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Meghan March has been known to wear camo face paint and tromp around in woods wearing mud-covered boots, all while sporting a perfect manicure. She’s also impulsive, easily entertained, and absolutely unapologetic about the fact that she loves to read and write smut. Her past lives include slinging auto parts, selling lingerie, making custom jewelry, and practicing corporate law. Writing books about dirty talking alpha males and the strong, sassy women who bring them to their knees is by far the most fabulous job she’s ever had. She loves hearing from her readers at meghanmarchbooks@gmail.com.

FACEBOOK | WEBSITE | INSTAGRAM | AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE | TWITTER | PINTEREST

Clam Jam by R.C. Boldt – Excerpt and Q and A

“Clam Jam”

Definition: the female equivalent of a cock
block.

Example: You’re chatting with a guy you’re
interested in 
and your friend comes along and lays claim to him. 

CLAM JAM
RC Boldt
Releasing January 10th, 2017
 
“Clam Jam”
Definition: the female equivalent of a cock
block.
 
Example: You’re chatting with a guy you’re
interested in 
and your friend comes along and lays claim to him. 
 
Maggie
That’s my
life—except it’s worse. My friend who keeps “jamming” me is my gay roommate and
if that isn’t a W.T.F. moment, I’m not sure what is.


Fact: He went home with three—yes,
three—of the guys I had been so sure were into me.
Fact: 
He’s really
pissing me off. I mean, hello? I’m trying to get back in the saddle, but I’ll
never manage to get a boyfriend before the age of fifty if he keeps this up.
Fact: Secretly, I wonder
what it would be like if he weren’t gay. Why do all the hot, sweet,
tender-hearted guys have to be gay?
Fact:
My gay-dar needs a
serious tune-up.
 
Ry
The day I
interviewed for the room to rent, everything changed. I knew I had met “the
girl”, except there was one small problem: she didn’t want anything to do with
men. I recognized a top-notch force field when I saw one. She’d been burned
badly and didn’t want to deal with a heterosexual guy as a roommate. I could’ve
turned around and found another place to live, but I wanted to live there—with
her.
So I had to
go “undercover”. 


Fact: I’m in love with my roommate.
Fact: 
I’m a likely
candidate for carpal tunnel surgery since all the action I’ve had for the past
year has been my hand.
Fact: 
She’s going to
hate me if I come clean now.
Fact: 
I’m not giving
up. Which means, I’ll just have to continue to run defense until I figure out a
way to get Maggie to see the “real” me. 


The me that
loves her.
The me that
would never do her wrong.
Until then,
I’ll keep running off every guy who shows any interest. 
Until then,
I’ll continue to Clam Jam. 
 
excerpt

“But she doesn’t want anything to do with men, Ry. What are you going to do? Just casually bring it up one morning that you’re actually hetero?” He scoffs, shaking his head at me. “I see that going over real well.”

“I haven’t gotten that far but, this way, I can get to know her without all that shit getting in the way. The whole nervousness, the whole showing the other person your best at all times until you’re really committed and then it all comes out.”

“And you’re going to do this by being dishonest from the get-go.”

Running my hands down my face, I let out a frustrated groan. “What was my other option? To let her go, to never have an opportunity to get to know her—to never get to be her friend, at the very least—without her feeling like I have any ulterior motives—”

“Which you do.”

“—and be faced with the possibility of me being too late and another guy getting to her when she decides she’s ready to start dating again?”

“I’d like to go on record and say that you’ve been watching too many damn chick flicks.”

“Whatever.”

He’s silent for a moment, staring at me before his lips twitch, slowly forming a smirk. “So how long have we been together, love muffin?”

The breath I’ve been holding in comes out in a slow exhale. “For a while.” Holding up a finger, I add, “But we have an ‘open’ relationship.”

His eyebrows arch at that. “Why, you little player, you. Won’t commit to being monogamous, huh?” He tips his beer to his lips, takes a swig, and grins. “I bet I can convince you to be mine within a few months tops, pookie bear.”

I make a face, scoffing, “Not likely.”

He waves a hand dismissively. “You’ll be putting out before long. Mark my words.”

“You’re not right.” I laugh, shaking my head at him.

“You’re the one who’s pretending to be gay.”

“Point taken.”

We both take a swig of beer and fall silent for a moment before Jack finally speaks.

“Can’t say that I’ve ever pretended to be someone’s gay lover before.” His face stretches into a wide, toothy grin.

And, just like that, my best friend is officially involved in my game plan. All for the sake of a woman I’m convinced is “the one.”

 

Q&A with RC Boldt

Describe yourself in five words or less.

Sarcastic, organized, wino, loud, happy

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

Maggie, with her internal dialogue, was the most fun to write. She was definitely quirky in her own right but, I like to think she’s also quite realistic in voicing what I feel a lot of women think.

Name three things on your desk right now.

My planner, my Sharpie ultra fine point pen, and my laptop.

If you could trade places with anyone for just one day, who would you be?

My daughter, because I never went to Pre-K and I’m pretty much convinced I missed out on something HUGE. Snack time, going to the park, Art, etc. No homework, no bills, singing out of tune without any judgment… Sign me up for that.

What are some books that you enjoyed recently?

Managed by Kristen Callihan, Someone Like You by Lauren Layne, and Vicious by L.J. Shen.

Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans?

I am so incredibly grateful for your support! I could never truly manage to put into words how thankful I am.

Can you tell us about your upcoming book?

Out of the Ashes is scheduled for release in May. It’s a standalone about a Navy SEAL who was left in the hands of hell’s cruelest gatekeepers and the one woman ready to show him that his life isn’t over, that he’s worthy of love. She might be the only one to prove to him that sometimes even a phoenix needs help rising out of the ashes.

RC Boldt is the wife of Mr. Boldt, a retired Navy Chief, mother of Little Miss Boldt, and former teacher of many students. She currently lives on the southeastern coast of North Carolina, enjoys long walks on the beach, running, reading, people watching, and singing
karaoke. If you’re in the mood for some killer homemade mojitos, can’t recall the lyrics to a particular 80’s song, or just need to hang around a nonconformist who will do almost anything for a laugh, she’s your girl.

 

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Clam Jam by R.C. Boldt – Review

reviewClam Jam

33255156Synopsis

Clam Jam
Definition: the female equivalent of a cock block.
Example: You’re chatting with a guy you’re interested in and your friend comes along and lays claim to him.
Maggie
That’s my life except it’s worse. My friend who keeps jamming me is my gay roommate, and if that isn’t a W.T.F. moment, I’m not sure what is.
Fact: He went home with three yes, three of the guys I had been so sure were into me.
Fact: He’s really pissing me off. I mean, hello? I’m trying to get back in the saddle, but I’ll never manage to get a boyfriend before the age of fifty if he keeps this up.
Fact: Secretly, I wonder what it would be like if he weren’t gay. Why do all the hot, sweet, tender-hearted guys have to be gay?
Fact: My gay-dar needs a serious tune-up.
Ry
The day I interviewed for the room to rent, everything changed. I knew I had met the girl, except there was one small problem: she didn’t want anything to do with men. I recognized a top-notch force field when I saw one. She’d been burned badly and didn’t want to deal with a heterosexual guy as a roommate. I could’ve turned around and found another place to live, but I wanted to live there with her.
So I had to go undercover.
Fact: I’m in love with my roommate.
Fact: I’m a likely candidate for carpal tunnel surgery since all the action I’ve had for the past year has been my hand.
Fact: She’s going to hate me if I come clean now.
Fact: I’m not giving up. Which means I’ll just have to continue to run defense until I figure out a way to get Maggie to see the real me.
The me that loves her.
The me that would never do her wrong.
Until then, I’ll keep running off every guy who shows any interest.
Until then, I’ll continue to Clam Jam.

goodreads

4.5-Stars

I loved this book. Laugh out loud funny, sexy, and a whole lot of fun to read.

My Thoughts

I don’t even know where to start with this book. First of all I was like this the entire time reading:

Getting strange looks from the people around me like this:

But it was completely worth it. I loved every second of this book. Aside from the hilarity of it there was so much heart and you really felt connected to Ry and Maggie. These two were some of my all time favorite characters and I know I will be reading this over and over again.

Notable Quotes

CLAM JAM DEFINITION: the female equivalent of a cock block. EXAMPLE:You’re chatting with a guy you’re interested in and your friend comes along and lays claim to him.


Hello, my name is Maggie Finegan, and I’m mega lame.
Do they even have support groups for that?


I had spotted Maggie in the Starbucks around the corner from my office building. But she was always with a guy whom I assumed to be her fiance. And something about her captivated me.


I’ve just gone to all this trouble to try to make myself as pretty as possible for a guy. But not just any guy. For my roommate. For my gay roommate.


I want a guy who will love me even when I have no makeup on and still tell me and believe that I’m beautiful.

copy-of-excerpt

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About the Author

RC Boldt is the wife of Mr. Boldt, a retired Navy Chief, mother of Little Miss Boldt, and former teacher of many students. She currently lives on the southeastern coast of North Carolina, enjoys long walks on the beach, running, reading, people watching, and singing karaoke. If you’re in the mood for some killer homemade mojitos, can’t recall the lyrics to a particular 80’s song, or just need to hang around a nonconformist who will do almost anything for a laugh, she’s your girl.

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