Book Review: Infamous (Kings of Capital 2) by Ivy Wild

Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

Published on: 30 January 2021
Type: HEA, standalone, series
Genre: New Adult Fiction, Contemporary Romance
Author: Ivy Wild
Read: 21 January 2021
Shelved: 23 January 2021
Rating: 5/ 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Get it here:
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Synopsis

My name is Sophie Strong
and I sold my soul to a record company
For fame
For fans
For fortune
For a life I thought I wanted.
I sold out in the worst possible way
Leaving everything I loved behind
Turning myself into someone I wasn’t
Just to watch the world turn itself on me.
Now the whole world hates me and I can’t escape them.
I can’t escape this.
And no matter how fast I run
Connor Driscoll always seems to find me.
He’s the man I left behind and the one I don’t deserve.
He says he loves me but he shouldn’t.
Because once you become famous,
all that’s left to do is become
INFAMOUS

Infamous is a standalone romance. It is a first person re-telling of the original Infamous Trilogy.

Reviews on the first editions of the trilogy:-
Chasing the Idol
Running from Fate
Beating the Odds


Review

Disclosure: Some topics were discussed/mentioned that may like BDSM, steamy scenes, kidnapping, and violence might trigger readers, so tread carefully.

One lustful kissed started it all for Connor and Sophie.

Sophie Stronglen (aka “Sophia Strong”) is a pop singer whose music career was abruptly cut short after her music label assigned her to another music management. After learning that running away from her problems and the public finding out her whereabouts in her hometown, she decides to go back to face the music in Los Angeles to protect Connor from her scandal. Sophie starts finding out how deep into trouble she is by trusting the wrong people.

Connor Driscoll knows he’s in love with Sophie. He’s been waiting so long to claim her as his own. Bumping into her years after had not eradicated his feelings for her. This time, he is NOT going to let her slip his fingers again without a good explanation. As he learns more about what happened to Sophie five years ago, the more he is stepping up his game to win her back. He is ready to risk it all for their relationship because he knows that he will do everything in his power for their HEA.

Before anything – Infamous is the combined version of the trilogy series previously titled Chasing the Idol, Running from Fate, and Beating the Odds. The story may be the same, but everything feels different this second time around.

No matter how much I try to prepare for the drama, I still fell for everything – hook, line, and sinker. 

I thought because I previously read the trilogy already that I wouldn’t feel so much. So WRONG! 

My heart hurt. 

I cried buckets. 

I felt raw and hopeless for Connor and Sophie’s situation.

BUT

I did throw the happy dance when it was all over (again)!

This combined version intensifies the suspense and drama of the storyline, so be prepared. The POV change, but it did not negate Sophie’s dilemma, Connor’s deep feelings, or the story’s drama. The book is long and heavy, so be patient and just read on.

In the first part of the book (Chasing the Idol), the author introduces readers to Sophie and Connor – meeting again after so long and in precarious positions. Will their past dictate their friendship status, or will they be strangers forever?

Bumping into Connor was the turning point of everything. 

Readers will see a broken and self-pity Sophie trying her best to pick her life back. Starting again means finishing off her degree and find a job. A job that will take her to anonymity, but Fate had other plans. 

I liked the second part of the book, Running From Fate, a lot. In this part of the book, I got a better connection for Sophie and her plight. I felt every emotion she went through – joy, disappointment, pain, and hopelessness— all of this due to fame and fortune. Sophie shot to fame at a young age to become the biggest pop sensation. The pressure and fame become too much, and with everyone scrutinizing her moves, she felt like a prisoner in her own home! If readers think that was bad, the fall from fame is worst. I believed that she just wanted her voice heard and her song shared. 

The flashbacks were great and helped readers understand more about what happened to Sophie and Connor individually, leading them to act the way they did in the first part.

I did love Connor’s “take-charge” attitude in helping Sophie, whether she wants to or not, near the end of this second section.

By the time readers get to Beating the Odds, the third and final section of the book, they will see a flicker of hope of things for Sophie and Connor. Sleezebag characters came into light and “resolved” in the previous section. Still, nothing could prepare Sophie and Connor for an even bigger, more powerful evil that seeks to destroy their happiness for more money. 

I love supporting characters! Both have their “wall of support” in the form of an ingenious and resourceful assistant named Kris for Connor and a lovely lady named Skyler for Sophie. 

Kris is the competent assistance and “right-hand man” of Connor at Pheonix Development. He has proven himself worthy in many ways in series and was essential in Connor’s plan to “fix” Sophie’s contract issues.

Sophie bonded with Skyler, a waitress in her and Connor’s favorite hangout spot, and was critical in “changing” the book’s course. 

Yes, I genuinely believe that without her, Connor and Sophie will not end up together. She is GOLD!!!

Overall, my impression of the book:-

If you are a first time reader or if you missed out on this great series the first time, you are in for a treat! It is for suspense, drama, romance fanatics. Infamous is what you want on your bookshelf.

If you want heart-stopping, cliffhanger-like, cannot breathe, on-the-edge kind of scenes, Infamous has you covered!

If you want to read a book that will make you go through a range of emotions of suspense, angst, frustration, sorrow, laughter, plus great supporting characters, Infamous will be your answer out of quarantine boredom lockdown!

If you are a reader who wants to read through a story that encapsulates a beautiful story of perseverance, resilience, redemption, and true love, Infamous is for you and more!

Lastly, if you are all of the above, you will surely love Infamous

PS: I am thankful that the author did this version because I believe readers will appreciate Sophie and Conner’s story beautifully written and NO CLIFFHANGER!

PSS: Also, I smell a sequel or spin-off of this story soon – I hope!


About the Author

Writer of all things untamed, romantic and free, Ivy Wild never planned on becoming a romance novelist. In fact, she hated romance as a kid and was quite proud of that fact. Basically, life is weird.
Married to her own alpha hero, she currently lives in various places of the world at various times thanks to his military career.
Her current side hustle is being a lawyer.

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Blog Tour : The Bromantic Comedies by Erin Mallon

The Bromantic Comedies, an all-new compilation of laugh-out-loud audio plays from Erin Mallon and featuring your favorite narrators is available now!

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Check out an Instagram interview with Erin and some of the narrators from The Bromantic Comedies!

Synopsis

A paintball battleground. A wrestling mat for sleep-deprived new daddies. A feminine product aisle in the local drugstore. These are some of the places where men connect… at least in The Bromantic Comedies.

A compilation of humorous and heartfelt plays exploring what it means to be “masculine” in a world where men are supposed to be tough.


Meet Erin

Erin Mallon‘s debut romantic comedy novel, Flirtasaurus, releases in July 2020. She is an award-winning narrator of over 450 books and an accomplished playwright and producer in New York City. She has written over 40 plays, which have been produced Off-Broadway and all over the country, including These Walls Can Talk, a raucous theatrical love letter to the romance audiobook community. She lives in a little yellow house on the outskirts of NYC with her husband and Three J’s.

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Blog Tour: These Violent Roots by Nicole Williams


These Violent Roots, an all-new psychological thriller from New York Times bestselling author Nicole Williams is available now!

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Synopsis

Grace Wolff spends her days fighting monsters, and her nights hiding from her own. As a public prosecutor in the sexual crimes unit, she knows more about rapists, pedophiles, and deviants than most people dare to consider.

Dr. Noah Wolff is as acquainted with monsters as his wife. While Grace dedicates her career to putting violent men away, Noah is more interested in rehabilitating them. A renowned psychiatrist specializing in sexual deviance, he counsels a burgeoning number of court-appointed patients wrestling with evil in its vilest form.

When she discovers a long line of pedophile suicides have been murders in disguise, Grace is duty-bound to aid in the investigation. But in her quest to track down the killer, Grace faces an ethical impasse. As a steward of the law, she has an obligation to seek justice for the murders. As a human being, she accepts that “innocent until proven guilty” is laden with loopholes criminals slip through too easily, and too often.

As she hunts the hunter, Grace is forced to acknowledge a complicated truth. To defeat the swell of monsters preying upon humanity’s most innocent, one must become a monster themselves.


Excerpt

Parked outside the police precinct in downtown Seattle, I found myself fixated on a particular piece of graffiti sprayed on a concrete column buttressed beneath an overpass. This was different than the typical profanities, initials, or gang signs spewed across old abandoned buildings and freeway infrastructures.

Freshly painted, given its prominence above the rest of the graffiti, an oval with a line cutting horizontally through the center stretched several feet long. Done in black, it was the Greek symbol for theta, the eighth letter of the Greek alphabet.

It was the symbol for death.

It had also become a mark the public had assigned to the Huntsman. A black theta. The mark of death.

It had started small, only known about in fringe society, but then a major news station ran a report on it and the concept exploded into the mainstream. A few weeks ago, a person might pass the occasional weirdo with a theta symbol penned in black Sharpie across the back of their hand, but fast forward a few weeks and a person couldn’t drive to the grocery store without passing bumper stickers, shirts, and pins hanging off backpacks and purses, from your average high school student to your aging veteran.

At the Public Market, vendors were carrying shirts with the theta symbol accompanied with the caption of Justice for all. They were selling out.

The Huntsman had been elevated from a cult following to an icon of pop culture, the first serial killer to gain mainstream acceptance. Serial killers before him had always drawn a small fan base of emotionally fragile women, but this was different. The Huntsman not only came with the adoration of those unstable girls wanting to marry him whenever he was caught and thrown into prison for the rest of his life, but your everyday mother, from inner-city to suburban, supported his mission of wiping out pedophiles. They saw him as the dark but necessary hand of justice, an angel of death who protected the most innocent and vulnerable of society.

The Huntsman had support in the male category as well, from dads, husbands, boyfriends, and students because, veiled as they might keep it, most men at their base believed in good old-fashioned justice where eye-for-an-eye was more life-for-an-eye.

The elderly, who had known hard times those of us under fifty couldn’t begin to understand, regarded the Huntsman as a necessary evil who was finally cleaning up the streets. And the kids . . . they talked about him almost as though he were the latest and greatest superhero to hit the big screen. An analogy I’d heard from one of the other attorney’s pre-teen was Deadpool meets Suicide Squad meets Batman.

Whatever that meant.

Huntsman fever hadn’t only hit the Greater Seattle area, but had swept across the nation. Rallies were arranged by satellite supporters in most major cities in the country. Protests had begun to crop up as well, Huntsman supporters waving signs outside of courthouses and demanding true justice for those standing accused inside. The supporters had even christened themselves with a name—The Disciples. As though they were some devote band of followers who’d do anything for their leader, some of which I didn’t doubt would.

The Huntsman’s mark—I was still staring at it, half-hypnotized. Up until now, the public had praised the efforts of anyone involved in catching a serial killer, but not this time. No one would thank us for catching the Huntsman. Some would probably attempt to impede our efforts. But I was a state’s attorney, a guardian of the law the way it was written.

I didn’t have the luxury of deciding which murders were justified and which should be prosecuted.


About the Author

Biographies are impossible for me to write without landing somewhere in the realm of lame. Which is ironic since I’m a writer attempting to, you know, do what I do and write. For whatever reason though, trying to sum up who I am is enough to make me rock myself into a psychiatric-something in a dark corner.

I could try explaining what I love: books, writing, adventures, the outdoors, animals, my family, my friends. I could list what I don’t love: hate, needles, narrow-mindedness, pantyhose, celery. I could go into my background and my sources of inspiration, sprinkling throughout witty bits of commentary and the expected author-fare of a few words that make a person scratch their head and reach for a dictionary. But the true biography of who I am is penned on the pages of my books, hidden between the words. Where I’ve been, who I am, where I’m going—it’s all there.

At the end of the day, I’m an open book.

Connect with Nicole
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Blog Tour: Captured in Ink (1001 Dark Nights) by Carrie Ann Ryan


“Count on Carrie Ann Ryan for emotional, sexy, character driven stories that capture your heart!” –Carly Phillips, New York Times bestselling author


Captured in Ink, an all-new smoking hot Montgomery Ink: Boulder Novella from New York Times bestselling author Carrie Ann Ryan and 1,001 Dark Nights is available now!

New York Times bestselling author Carrie Ann Ryan returns to the Montgomery Ink world with three souls bruised yet forever connected in this sexy and intoxicating ménage romance.

Download your copy today!
Amazon| Amazon Worldwide | Amazon Paperback | Goodreads

Synopsis

Julia and Ronin know their relationship is solid. They’ve been through hell and back, but their love has stayed true through it all. When Ronin’s ex, Kincaid, comes back to town, however, the two realize what they might be missing.

Kincaid didn’t mean to leave Ronin behind all those years ago. When tragedy struck not once, but twice, bringing with it the heat of horror, he couldn’t face the past he’d left behind. Now, he’s back and doesn’t know how he fits in with the seemingly perfect couple—especially not when their families will apparently stop at nothing to keep them apart.

**Every 1001 Dark Nights novella is a standalone story. For new readers, it’s an introduction to an author’s world. And for fans, it’s a bonus book in the author’s series. We hope you’ll enjoy each one as much as we do.**


Excerpt

I had spent too long trying to dig myself out of the darkness, attempting to claw my way out of horror, and I had missed my chance at something more. My fault, I repeated to myself—all my fault.

“Kincaid?” the woman in front of me asked, her voice soft. “It’s good to finally meet you,” she said, although her voice was devoid of emotion. I didn’t know if she was lying or not.

I rolled my shoulders back. “I’m sorry for disturbing you so late. I just got into town. I’ll let you be. Sorry about this.” I turned to walk away, to let the pain ease ever so slightly even though I knew it never would, but a small hand grabbed my arm—the strength of the grip surprising me. I looked down at that diamond ring that had been put on her finger by the man I once loved. The man I still loved? I wasn’t sure.

“Come inside. Please.”

“I don’t think that would be a good idea,” I said.

Ronin didn’t say anything. And, somehow, that hurt worse than him yelling at me and throwing me out. But I would deserve it if he did. I deserved all of it.

“I’m Julia. Please, come inside. It’s late and getting a bit chilly. You don’t even have a coat on.”

“I’m fine,” I said.

“Please. You don’t want me to get mean.” Her eyes twinkled as I peered at her face.

This was the woman Ronin had married, and I liked her. She was firm, smiled, and looked like she would take no shit—the perfect partner for Ronin. She was so different from Alexis. I could already tell that, and maybe that was a good thing. She likely wouldn’t run away when things got tough.

Though I had no idea how I could tell that from a single touch, a momentary glance.

“Come on. Ronin and I were just cleaning up after dinner.”

That’s when I finally noticed the swollen lips—the tousled hair.

Oh, they had definitely been doing something after dinner, but it wasn’t cleaning up.

Jealousy slashed at me, but I pushed it away.

I deserved this, and so much more.

Finally, I looked at Ronin again, saw the longing mixed with anger in his gaze, and knew I couldn’t just leave. I would after, but I couldn’t hurt this woman, not when I knew if I walked away, I would only leave ashes in my wake for her to deal with. And neither of them deserved that.

“Okay, just for a moment.”


About the Author

Carrie Ann Ryan is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of contemporary, paranormal, and young adult romance. Her works include the Montgomery Ink, Talon Pack, Promise Me, and Elements of Five series, which have sold millions of books worldwide. She’s the winner of a RT Book of the Year and a Prism Award in her genres. She started writing while in graduate school for her advanced degree in chemistry and hasn’t stopped since. Carrie Ann has written over seventy-five novels and novellas with more in the works. When she’s not losing herself in her emotional and action-packed worlds, she’s reading as much as she can while wrangling her clowder of cats who have more followers than she does.

Connect with Carrie
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The Sweetest Fix by Tessa Baily

The Sweetest Fix, an all-new opposites attract standalone rom com from New York Times bestselling author Tessa Bailey is available now!

Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

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Synopsis

Reese dreams of seeing her name in lights on Broadway, but so far she has only graced the used car parking lots of rural Wisconsin. With her window of opportunity shrinking fast, a miracle happens. She wins an audition with Bernard Bexley, Broadway’s most respected dance choreographer. When disaster strikes and Reese misses the audition, she has to find another way in front of Bernard, otherwise face the disappointment back home.

Following the sage advice of a Times Square Pikachu—Reese seeks out Bernard’s son, prepared to beg for his aid, never expecting mega sparks to fly between her and the gentle giant baker. With Reese’s heart now involved, she refuses to use Leo to her advantage and tries to walk away before her ulterior motives are exposed, but gravity continues to draw them back together…until it’s impossible to stay apart.

But Reese’s lie of omission can only stay buried for so long. When Leo finds out how their relationship started, will Reese keep her ultimate role as Leo’s leading lady? Or will the curtain fall on their real-life fairytale?


Excerpt

Leo stuck his hands in his pockets and sauntered toward her, taking a spot beside her at the edge of the roof. “So. You’re a long way from home. How long have you been in the city?”

Her smile wavered, the reminder of her lies of omission twisting bolts on the sides of her throat. “Oh, not long.” She turned and propped her arms on the wall, looking out over the city blocks. “I wish my mother could see this.”

“You said she owns a dancing school. Was she your teacher?”

“When I was little, yes. Around age ten, she thought I needed something a little more advanced.” She gave him a prim look. “It paid off, too, don’t you know? You might remember me from a certain national Red Rover Yogurt commercial.”

He turned slightly, squinting an eye at her. “Wait a minute. No way.”

Reese pushed off the wall and performed the soft shoe routine she’d done thousands of times—mostly as a party trick—since the age of eleven. “No preservatives or chemicals, we’ve got your all-natural meals,” she sang, “Choose Red Rover products and kick up your heels.”

“Holy shit.” He stared at her, dumbfounded. “The audacity of me to ask out a celebrity.”

“Please.” She fluffed her hair. “I put my pants on one leg at a time like everyone else.”

They seemed to gravitate toward each other naturally, as if there was no other option, until their faces were a handful of inches apart. “How about those shorts?” he said gruffly. “You get those on the same way?”

A hot, fizzy stream of awareness circled and danced in her midsection. This was flirting. But not the kind she was used to. Where she worried about every line out of her mouth, worrying they would come across too desperate. Or if the guy would think she was funny. No, it was easy as breathing to pull back the edge of her coat, drawing his attention downward. “What? These old things?”

“Yeah.” A muscle ticked in his cheek. “Those.”

She leaned in like they were sharing a secret and watched his eyes darken. “I have to wiggle around a little to get these on.”

They exhaled into each other’s space, not bothering to hide the fact that both of them were breathing faster. “Damn, Reese.”

There was a wealth of meaning in those two words. Not just, damn, you look good in those shorts. But damn, this attraction between them was not typical. “I know,” she said in a rush, their mouths almost touching. She wasn’t sure what made her pull away before he could close the distance for a kiss. Maybe it was to gather her wits or a tug from her conscience. But she took a long pull of February air to perform maintenance on her short-circuiting brain. “So, um…” She resisted the urge to fan herself. “How long have you owned the bakery?”

With his own centering breath, Leo slowly settled back in a safe distance away. “Four years,” he said, voice gravelly. “Took me a while after culinary school to build the capital and find the right people. The right place. Didn’t want to rush it.”

“Capital?” Her question hung in the air for several seconds before she realized what a stupid assumption she’d made. “Forget I said that. I just…I thought with your father being who he is…”

“That I would have an automatic investor?” He shrugged a shoulder. “Natural to assume that. Don’t worry about it.” There was an assessing glance in her direction, as if he wasn’t sure whether to say more. She held her breath, hoping he would. “I guess it didn’t feel right taking money for something he doesn’t have a real interest in. Baking. I’m not saying he’s unsupportive. We’re just about different things. Felt better doing it on my own.”

“That’s admirable.” She wanted to tell him how much she could relate. Currently. Trying to grasp something that felt just within reach, refusing any shortcuts. How it could feel scary and unfair one minute, rewarding the next. “And I guess you found the right people. Jackie and Tad.”

Warmth moved in his expression. “Yeah. Tad was actually an usher downstairs when I met him. We interviewed Jackie together. She’d just dropped out of nursing school because the emotional toll was more than she expected.”

“So she went for the exact opposite.”

“Only for a while. I doubt she’ll be at the Cookie Jar forever. But I’ll be glad to have her as long as she puts up with my grumpy ass.”

“You’re not coming across as grumpy as you did Saturday night.”

“That’s because I’m trying to charm you into going out with me. Is it working?”

Her laugh drifted out over the rooftops. “Maybe. How long until the grump returns?”

“I skipped lunch. So…imminently.”


About the Author

Tessa Bailey is originally from Carlsbad, California. The day after high school graduation, she packed her yearbook, ripped jeans and laptop, driving cross-country to New York City in under four days.

Her most valuable life experiences were learned thereafter while waitressing at K-Dees, a Manhattan pub owned by her uncle. Inside those four walls, she met her husband, best friend and discovered the magic of classic rock, managing to put herself through Kingsborough Community College and the English program at Pace University at the same time. Several stunted attempts to enter the workforce as a journalist followed, but romance writing continued to demand her attention.

She now lives in Long Island, New York with her husband of eleven years and seven-year-old daughter. Although she is severely sleep-deprived, she is incredibly happy to be living her dream of writing about people falling in love.

Connect with Tessa
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Feisty (The Do-Over 3) by Julia Kent

Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

Published on: 28 January 2020
Type: HEA, standalone, series
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Author: Julia Kent
Read: 17 January 2021
Shelved: 18 January 2021
Rating: 4/ 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Get it here: (99¢ for a limited time only!)
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Synopsis

I’m not too proud to admit that finding Mr. Right involves swiping right. Right? Welcome to dating in avocado toastland.

Here I am, on my first blind date, ever, courtesy of a smartphone app and my two annoying best friends.

So what is Chris “Fletch” Fletcher doing, walking across the room, looking at his phone like he’s pattern matching a picture to find a real person he’s never met before?

Oh.

Oh, no.

The guy I drop-kicked in seventh grade cannot be my blind date. The guy who earned me this infernal nickname.

That’s right.

Feisty.

More from New York Times bestselling author Julia Kent as Fiona “Feisty” Gaskill gets her chance at love – drop-kick included.


Review

Disclosure: Traumatic events discussed and relived in this book. Things like a potential school shooting/siege/hostage, kidnapping, violence, and reliving it might be triggers for some, and it all happened in the first few chapters of the book. Readers take heed.

Fiona “Feisty” Gaskill is a nursery school teacher. She is a spiritual person – finding her calm through nature and the earth’s energy. That energy helped save her and her students when an out-of-control parent decided to storm their small classroom. Fiona’s quick wit and heroic actions in defending her “space” and the kids were all caught on camera, and she later becomes a viral sensation!

Chris “Fletch” Fletcher is a paramedic and is the uncle of Mattie, who the out-of-control parent who stormed Fiesty’s preschool. He was the first responder on the scene and was the one who comforted Fiona and “grounded” her. It was an overwhelming sight for readers, I am sure.

I have been following The Do-Over series since Book 1 came out. A few of the series’ characters are present, but readers do not need to read the other books from the series to start Feisty.

The story is from a single POV – Fiona’s. The writing is smart, sharp, and witty. There was a lot of humor infused that balanced off the internal struggles of Fiona with her feelings. It talks a lot about redemption for both main characters, not only Fiona.

Note that the book may run slow. It can be considered a slow-burn book. A lot of Fiona’s thoughts heavily depended on the spiritual and energy connections around her. Readers may find this complicated, but I appreciated this since I believe in it. (Some call this gut-instinct or “intuition.”)

Fiona’s a very emotional and spiritual character that will make you feel everything she does as she tries to explain herself to everyone around her, including self-talking to herself in many situations. What she did to save her students, then later to reenact them again, is astounding. The traumatic experience did leave an impression on her, but not how readers will expect. 

I enjoyed discovering the “real Fiona,” especially the internal fights between her old self versus her new self. The latter being the social media sensation that brought women empowerment to Anderhill, Massachusetts.

Self-awareness is a double-edged sword. After a while, I can sense when one self inside me is fooling another self. You would think the clarity would help.
Instead, it just threatens the piece of me that is avoiding pain. It’s like the universe is conspiring to put us together.

— Feisty (The Do-Over 3), Julia Kent


Since readers only see Fiona’s POV, Fletch’s POV was critical for me. After his “encounter” with Fiona, it made a big impression on how he turned out in the book – this is HUGE! 

It is not often that teenagers realize the gravity of their actions unless it impacts them. The author talks about how Fletcher reflected on his actions – listening to women’s words and taking heed. This topic is an important one and applies to everyone, not only women. The author talks about empowerment and self-worth while quashing self-entitlement and misinterpretation. It is refreshing to have someone (anyone) in the book community tackle this topic, especially from the male’s perspective. Fletch does talk a lot that made me smile at what happened after he got his “shiner” from Fiona.

The “push-pull moments” between Fletcher and Fiona are stellar. Both grew individually and separately after their “encounter,” but their attraction is “fated.” Their in-book chemistry was explosive and volatile, wherein Fiona goes hot and cold all at the same time since she felt everything. 

“Did you kiss her again?” he demands.
Candi makes a snorted sound.
“Yes,” Chris confesses.
“Then you have to marry her!”

Feisty, Julia Kent


I felt terrible for Fletcher in a lot of book scenes as he knew that Fiona needed “space,” even if readers all know how it would end. He gave what he can and more. I believe them when they mentioned that “it was easy” – most likely because they connect beyond the physical but emotional/spiritual. Fiona being so emphatic, absorbs all the good, the bad, and in-between everything around her that she needed others to help her make sense of her “new feelings” for Fletcher that the latter gladly and patiently did throughout the book.

I miss Perky and Mallory from Books 1 and 2. They were how I remembered them. They both give readers a good balance of uncensored jokes, reality-checks, and unending laugh out banter that will be ingrained in your heads! 

In summary, I enjoyed Feisty. It is not your typical enemies-to-lovers rom-com and instead brings focus on the growth, maturity, and personal development of the main characters. The trauma of the past, if left unresolved, will find a way to resurface and make a person face it head-on – old self versus new self. Having Fate conspiring against Fiona’s wishes to avoid Fletcher is the best part of the book and will make readers believe in “meant-to-be” because it is true for both of them! Fletcher seems to have done a lot of “work” on himself in the past after his “lesson” from Fiona made him the best candidate/partner for Fiona to face and later “marry” her two selves into the best version of herself for everyone.

Energy doesn’t lie. People do. People can fool themselves, use denial as a tool, create defense mechanism that look like artwork. But energy? It just is. And when you fall for the right person, it’s the same way.
It just…is

Feisty (The Do-Over 3), Julia Kent


About the Author

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Julia Kent writes romantic comedy with an edge. From billionaires to BBWs to new adult rock stars, Julia finds a sensual, goofy joy in every contemporary romance she writes. Unlike Shannon from Shopping for a Billionaire, she did not meet her husband after dropping her phone in a men’s room toilet (and he isn’t a billionaire). She lives in New England with her husband and three sons in a household where the toilet seat is never, ever, down

Connect with Julia
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** GIVEAWAY ALERT **

In celebration of the release of Feisty, a giveaway is being run! Up for grabs is a $25 winner’s choice gift card!

This Blitz-wide giveaway is open internationally. The giveaway ends February 4.

Join now with the link below!
Head-on to Rafflecopter here.

Good luck!

The Honeymooner (Paradise Bay 1) by Melanie Summers

Disclosure:All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

Published on: 07 August 2018
Published by: Indigo Group 
Type: HEA, series, standalone
Genre: Contemporary British Fiction, Romantic Comedy, Satire Fiction. Women’s Fiction
Author: Melanie Summers
Read: 18 January 2021
Shelved: 19 January 2021
Rating: 4 / 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Get it here:
Amazon | Kobo Audio | Barnes & Noble | Google Play Audio | Bookbub | Goodreads

Synopsis

Twenty-nine-year-old workaholic Libby Dewitt lives by the motto ‘if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.’ She’s finally about to start her dream life with her steady-as-a-rock fiancé, Richard Tomy. Together, they’re the perfect power couple—right down to the fact that he’s agreed to use their honeymoon to help further her career in mergers and acquisitions. But ten minutes before the wedding, her dreams dissolve via text message.

Devastated and humiliated, Libby escapes to Paradise Bay alone. She’s got two goals for her trip: to devise a plan to get Richard back and to convince resort owner Harrison Banks to sell his property to her company. Unfortunately, when she arrives, she discovers that tall, dark, and built, Harrison is not about to make anything easy for her.

Instead, he derails her plans while at the same time, bringing out a side of Libby she’s kept carefully tucked away—a carefree, adrenaline junkie. After a few days together, Harrison’s got her wondering if the life she always wanted was meant for some other girl. Suddenly, Libby must decide which version of herself she wants to be.

Will she go back to her comfortable, safe life, or risk everything to be with the only man who’s ever made her feel truly alive?


Review

Liberty (“Libby” for short) Dawn Dewitt is a business analyst for GlobalLux Inc and has been pursuing new properties to expand GlobalLux’s asset holdings as the world’s premier luxury hotels. The company has its eyes set on Paradise Bay and is currently in negotiations/talks with the resort on possible acquisition when the book starts.

Libby is also a jilted bride (left at the altar) by her long-time boyfriend, which sucks big time for her. To get ahead and seal the deal (win-win in her books), Libby booked her honeymoon at Paradise Bay without realizing that she will be going alone. Note that she did push-through with her honeymoon to Santa Valentina Island, where Paradise Bay hoped to get a “win” in her professional life since her personal life isn’t doing very well.

Harrison Banks is the owner of Paradise Bay Resort. Harrison is very behind on his loan payments. He has a full load of responsibilities – keeping the resort afloat, supporting his siblings (one of them is finishing off her education), and still keep his sanity. His priority – to find a way to pay off the resort’s loans and turn the resort into a profitable one. Libby’s company acquisition offer at first was out-of-the-question, but as he had to sell an essential piece of his family’s possession at the start of the book, he realizes that maybe he might have to “cave-into” the offer whether he wants to or not.

The story is told from Libby’s and Harrison’s POVs. The writing is witty and hilarious as readers dive into the crazy minds of Libby and Harrison. There were many laugh-out moments that I kept chuckling, but there were also slow moments. There were a few moments when I wanted to shake Libby to let her know that in no way should she go back to her ex-fiancé, even if he does beg and grovel.

Libby’s been too uptight as a person, most likely because she wants to make sure she has everything planned and controlled compared to her mother, a free-spirited, nomad woman, who did not even know who Libby’s father is aside from a 3-day stand. She got lost along the way to her forever when she started looking forward versus looking to the present and “being” with her ex-fiance, which was what I believe the latter mentioned as the downfall of their relationship. She felt alone and lost when it all imploded.

In comes Harrison, who has this protector complex and easy-going nature, having trouble finding a solution to save the resort. He knows that he needs to focus on making the resort a profitable one.

The sparks were not immediate, but there was something – call it intuition, and learning more about each other brought them together in the book. They tried to avoid each other when they found out that Libby’s job was to find a way to have Harrison sell the resort to the company she works for, but things do not turn out that way.

Both characters have their flaws. For Libby, it is her constant need to “control” everything, trying to find a way to make her ex-fiance come back to her and avoid anything remotely “adventurous.” For Harrison, his compulsion to think of everyone else but himself drives everyone around him nuts. 

“I’m bored. Let’s do something incredible.”

— The Honeymooner, Melissa Summers


Along the way, things get a bit more complicated aside from finding a way for the resort to survive, Libby’s and Harrison’s feelings for each other, and keeping Libby’s sanity. Something happened near 3/4ths of the book that I appreciate the author bringing it in. It gives the first part of the story, Libby’s past, its worthy “closure.” This event has to happen and be “sorted out” before anything can even start with Libby and Harrison. That resolution becomes the book’s turning point that will make Libby and Harrison decide if there is anything to pick up after it happens.

Will Libby’s expertise in restructuring help Paradise Bay get back to its original splendor, or have it all sold to the highest bidder? 

Will Harrison’s desperation in helping everyone part of the resort means the end of anything that can spring up on a remote island?

In summary, I enjoyed reading The Honeymooner. It’s got a piece of everything for readers who love second chances, redemption, self-discovery, steadfast love, and humor. Yes, the book comes with a HEA ending for both main characters, the resort, and even the jilted ones that will surprise you how the author resolved Libby’s past and what she had to do for her future. And oh boy, did she come out of her comfort zone – to a new and improved without recognition Libby!

PS: I love the book’s inclusion of the wedding invitation, a map of the island, and even a resort brochure! That’s a lot to start, then the prologue in the form of email correspondences are perfect!

PSS: I’m glad that Libby didn’t end up with her ex-fiancé. Her full married name would be a real laugh-trip! I pity her future kids with it. You would have to read the book to get it, but I choked on my drink when the author explained how pronounced it was. LOL


About the Author

Melanie Summers resides in Edmonton, Canada, with her husband, three sporty nerd children, their adorable no-eyed dog, and one tiny puppy with a cute little brown nose. When she’s not writing novels, she loves reading (obviously), snuggling up on the couch with her family for movie night (which would not be complete without lots of popcorn and milkshakes), and long walks in the woods near her house. Melanie also spends a lot more time thinking about doing yoga than actually doing yoga, which is why most of her photos are taken ‘from above’. She also loves shutting down restaurants with her girlfriends. Well, not literally shutting them down, like calling the health inspector or something. More like just staying until they turn the lights off.

Melanie Summers also writes under the name M.J. Summers.

Connect with Melanie
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His Hot Mess (Jewel Lakes Series Book 3) by Claire Wilder

Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

Published on: 25 January 2021
Type: HEA, standalone, series
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Romantic Comedy
Author: Claire Wilder
Read: 18 January 2021
Shelved: 20 January 2021
Rating: 5 / 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Get it here:
Amazon | Bookbub | Goodreads

Synopsis

SADIE
I’ve never made good life choices. I call it being spontaneous, but the truth is, I fail at everything I touch. Bad jobs. Bad roommates. Terrible men.
This move from New York City to Jewel Lakes County, NY, is supposed to be a fresh start. Only I don’t know anything about opening a vintage clothing store, and the only one willing to help is know-it-all builder Chris Slade.
The only thing more annoying than Chris making me plan things out is how much I think about him when he’s not around.
And how much I want him when he is.

CHRIS
I’m a simple man. I don’t like messes. I don’t like talking about myself (ever), and I definitely don’t get involved with women—not since I was left at the altar by my long-time girlfriend back home.
If I did decide to date again, it couldn’t be with someone like Sadie Fulham. Yeah, she’s hot and funny and full of life. But she’s also a hot mess.
Unfortunately, there’s no way to avoid Sadie. My best friend is marrying her sister, and our contracting business is doing the renos on her shop.
I just wanted to keep my eye on her. So why can’t I take my eyes (or hands) off her?


Sadie and Chris couldn’t be more different. Could they teach each other a thing or two about love? Or are they too far apart to ever come together? 

~~~

Start the Jewel Lake Series Today!

Touching Wood (Jewel Lakes Book 0.5) –> free!
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Her Property (Jewel Lakes Book 1)
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His Build (Jewel Lakes Book 2)
Amazon | Bookbub | Goodreads


Review

Disclosure: some topics might be triggers to readers, like infertility, abandonment, and depression. Readers take heed.

Sadie Fulham is the free-spirited, flighty sister of Lucy in Book 1 of the series. She moved to Barkley Falls to have a fresh start after so many “life disappointments.” The area was perfect for a new beginning as she will be near her sister (her pillar of reason and strength) and away from the city. She is excited to starting her new business and being closer to her sister, who’s getting married to Chris’ business partner in a few months. 

Now, if she could only focus on straightening” her new life while being in the presence of a sexy yet frustrating contractor in her shop – everything else would be perfect.

Chris Slade is Graydon’s friend (also in Book 1) and an employee in Greyscale Constructions. He is a dependable, hardworking, and resourceful man who met Sadie through Graydon and Lucy. Their meeting was good, but their “nerves” for each other could be evident in Book 1. Chris gets his “kick” in testing Sadie’s temper and pushes her limit throughout the book. 

Sadie’s first step in “reinventing” herself is to start her own business – a vintage clothing store just below her recently moved-in apartment in town. She is lucky to have Grayscale Construction “in the family” and get the help she needed to get her shop opened sooner. 

Note to readers in the past series, this book is told from the first POV – Sadie’s and Chris’ versus the past books’ third-person POV. 

With this change, His Hot Mess achieved the goal of having readers better connect, relate and empathize with Sadie and Chris. Each character’s thought process and rationalization is more honest with this change. The story might be straight-forward based on the synopsis but expect a load full of complex characters and their dilemma. The emotions are all-over: from ecstatic and explosive passion to tearful, gut-wrenching self-realizations – a rollercoaster of emotions that will get readers working.

Sadie’s and Chris’ attraction did not jump out immediately – based on their first introductions. It was only later, when they got to work with each other on the store renovation project, that things do happen – by then, things between Sadie and Chris started sizzling. This book is NOT an “insta-love” story but more of the slow-burning, forlorn, getting-to-know-you connections that make this enemies-to-lovers story very plausible. They had to control and be professional – epic fail! My favorite part in the book was when all their control and attraction could not be contained and instead combusted into one absolutely pants-dropping, shirt-tugging scene! It was H-O-T!  

“But for the briefest moment today, sitting next to Sadie, I’d felt different.
Like air as fresh as the breeze on my face right now had filled my lungs,
giving me new life.
It was new. Good.
Despite everything screaming at me to stay away, I wanted to feel it again.”

— Chris, His Hot Mess


Unfortunately, things spiraled into some heavy gut-wrenching stuff after that scene, and the complications happen. The reasons for them to stay away from each other makes more sense. Not because they are not compatible,” but because they have too many unresolved issues in their heads even to explore anything outside of work.

Sadie’s past mistakes are “expected” for anyone who goes through life trying or thought they have found “the one.” Her string of choices was not quite what Chris has to offer as she soon finds out and will take her out of her “comfort zone,” which is a refreshing reprieve for her.

Chris’ past was a tougher one. It is never easy to lose someone you thought you would have your “forever” with. No one is supposed to go through such an event, then to be left shattered for years! The memory of being that vulnerable “rocked” Chris to the core and made him give up everything and move to Jewel Lakes. I felt more connected in Chris’ plight. I can see how Sadie wanted to do that also.

I appreciate the author taking the time to let readers understand both main characters’ emotional thought processes. The pace is slower because of this. I want to identify that each action by either main character is controlled and self-reflected well before anything comes to play. 

Expect the unexpected. 

Even if I tried to prepare myself, I did not expect all the grit and honesty of these characters who want to stay strong, but the emotions were too much to heal alone. They needed to get their “act together” and find out that what they have is a lot better than what their pasts were.

Even if I tried to prepare myself, I did not expect all the grit and honesty of these characters who want to stay strong, but the emotions were too much to heal alone. They needed to get their “act together” and find out that what they have is a lot better than what their pasts were.

I was happy to see some of the previous characters from Books 0.5, 1, and 2 came in support of the book and lent excellent advice to the main characters. It enables readers to revisit, reflect and see how far these past characters have come in the series. They will have continuing drama within the book, so that was a nice treat also.

Overall, I equivocally recommend His Hot Mess for readers who love slow-burning, second chances, hot steamy attraction, country-side romance, and gut-wrenching stories. It will make you feel things that you did not expect or did not know you had in you. 

PS: The book touches on a not-so-new comer in Jewel Lakes that I am excited to read about – Casey and Hank. I hope you all would join me on that journey when it comes out.


About the Author

Hey! I’m Claire.
And there are two things you should know about me right off the bat:
❤ LAKES
and
❤ LOVE!
(Would it be weird to get that on a t-shirt?)

Okay, I love a lot of other stuff (my husband, my kids, my creaky old house, man-candy, chocolate, wine….I could go on).
But those two are HUGE–they’re the reason I write the books I write!

First, Lakes.

I am a wee bit obsessed with lakes. I grew up on a lake in Ontario, Canada, and practically lived in or on the water all year round.
Swimming and dock-diving in the summer.
Ice skating ’til it hurt in the winter (literally. Chill blains are the WORST!).
I moved away from the lake when was ten and spent the rest of my childhood growing up in a major city.
But the lake is in my blood. There’s just something about being by the quiet stillness of a contained body of water that’s just…magic.
Just like the characters in my books, I’m a city girl now, yearning for a life closer to nature. For now, I’ll keep saving lake pictures and writing about them like I’m still there.

More Importantly, Love.

The other thing about me is I love…LOVE. All parts of it: the thrill, the warm-hearted comfort of it, the closeness, the connection. I believe in love wholeheartedly!
BUT. When it comes to romantic love, I’m a little picky. The kind of love I love (is this getting confusing yet?) is sweet AND sexy, cozy AND hot.
But above all, I believe true love must be formed on a basis of mutual respect. That’s why I write books about REAL women and the sexy AF men who love them. Jewel Lakes men are never manipulative. They never make you feel bad about yourself. They’re always sexy and they ALWAYS treat you right. 

What Else?

I love movies in extremes: I love it when they scare the pants off me (The Woman in Black); make me cry my face off (Steel Magnolias); OR make me laugh ’til my sides hurt (Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates). 
My favorite-ever food that I can’t cook is eggplant parmesan (though many dishes are close seconds–and I share lots of amazing recipes from foodies in my books in my newsletter). I also love a big ‘ol Costco hot dog (lol). 
I’m married to an amazing guy (Mr. Wilder) who is a movie lover (seriously ask him anything) and have three kids who drive me nuts but I wouldn’t trade them for all the sun and stars. 
When I’m not writing steamy lakeside romance novels (and the occasional sweet & sexy short story), I’m either reading, riding my e-bike (don’t knock it ’til you try it!) taking long walks by the ocean (which I consider a giant lake) or in the trees.
Thanks again for stopping by–be sure to check out my books page for all the latest info on my existing and upcoming work.

Connect with Claire
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Blog Tour: Wrecked Palace by Catherine Cowles


“Heartwarming, swoony moments, sizzling chemistry, and just enough intrigue to keep me completely invested–this book had me hooked from page one!”
— Willow Aster, USA Today bestselling author

Wrecked Palace, an all-new emotional slow-burn standalone romance in the Wrecked Series by author Catherine Cowles is available now!

Get it here:
Amazon | Amazon WW | Kobo | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books | Goodreads

Synopsis

One night was all it took for everything to change.
From college student to guardian in a single breath.
My siblings became my world.
No time for date nights or romantic dreams.
I traded quiet weekends for sleepless nights.
Giving my all to make sure they were cared for.

But Griffin had a brokenness that called to me—one that mirrored my own.
Gruff and just a little bit reckless.
He was the last thing I needed. But everything I wanted.
Only someone isn’t happy about this new life I’m building.
Deciding to set fire to everything I hold close.
And when the smoke clears, there might be only ashes left behind…


Excerpt

I climbed out of my truck in the parking lot of The General Store. Why was it that I always ended up here? There was just something about the brown-haired beauty who worked at the kitchen inside. Normally, people who shined with that life-is-beautiful kind of positivity made me want to punch something. But with Caelyn, I was fascinated.

I started towards the store when a man called my name. I stiffened and turned, expecting to see a stranger, maybe one of the reporters still holding out hope that I’d share my story with the world. The set of my shoulders eased a bit when I saw that it was Ford Hardy, owner of The Catch Bar & Grill. I said nothing but waited for the man to make his approach. He wasn’t a stranger exactly, but I had no desire for idle chitchat.

“I’ve been hoping to run into you,” he greeted.

I stayed silent.

Ford chuckled. “Not too talkative, are you?”

“Not much to say, I guess.”

Ford’s expression grew serious. “I just wanted to thank you for your help a few months back.”

“I didn’t do anything anyone else wouldn’t do.” Ford had been attacked by someone sick in the head. He’d been jumped from behind and knocked unconscious. I’d just come along at the right time.

“Either way, thank you.” He held out a hand, and I took it for a shake. “Come into the bar sometime. I’ll treat you to a beer and a meal. It’s the least I can do.”

I fought the wince that wanted to surface. The last thing I wanted was to sit around at the island watering hole. People whispered, thinking they were being discreet when they were anything but. Even worse, they sometimes thought it was completely acceptable to approach and ask me a million intrusive questions. “I’ll try and come by.”

Ford grinned. “I’m taking that as a fat chance in hell.”

My lips twitched. “You’re not a stupid man.”

“Thank God for that. Well, if I can ever do anything to repay you, just let me know. My brother’s a contractor. We could give you a couple of days on that house of yours if you’d like.”

My jaw tightened. “I’m good. But thanks for the offer.”

Ford nodded and gave me a wave before heading back towards The Catch. “There’s no expiration date on that.”

I wouldn’t take Ford up on his offer of help unless I got desperate. I needed to do this on my own. I started towards the store. Pulling the creaking screen door open, I walked inside. It was still a bit early, but when 4:00 a.m. was your usual wakeup call, 4:30 p.m. was just about perfect for dinner. Plus, I could avoid the after-work crowd.

I made my way towards the kitchen at the far end of the grocery but stopped in my tracks when I heard Caelyn’s voice.

“Is there any way you could give me more hours? Or more of the bookkeeping to do?”

Mr. Walters, the owner of the store, chuckled. “You’re doing it all already, deary. I barely show up here anymore.”

“Well, do you know of anyone else who might be looking for some help for things I could do from home?” she pressed.

“Are the two jobs you have not enough? You’re gonna work yourself to the bone. And you need to be home for those kids.”

“I know.” Caelyn’s voice seemed to deflate on the words. “But Mia got accepted into this gymnastics program, and it costs an arm and a leg.”

Walters’ voice gentled. “I’d be happy to loan you the fees—”

“No,” Caelyn cut Mr. Walters off. “You’ve done more than enough for us.”

A foreign feeling invaded my chest. A twisting sensation that burned. I’d heard the talk around the island that Caelyn had taken in her three younger siblings after their parents had been involved in some sort of drug bust. I couldn’t imagine taking all that on when she must’ve been barely more than a child herself.

I cleared my throat, stepping around the end of the aisle. Caelyn looked up, the frown marring her gorgeous face quickly turning into a bright smile. “Griffin. It’s good to see you. Have you finally given in to trying one of my salads?”

I gave my head a shake. “I think I’ll stick with the sandwich.”

Walters grinned. “I don’t know, Caelyn can make kale pretty tasty.”

I didn’t try to fight the twisting of my face. “No, thank you.”

Walters chuckled. “Maybe another day. All right, I’m off.” He turned to Caelyn. “You let me know if you change your mind.”

Caelyn reached up on her tiptoes, pressing her lips to the old man’s cheek. “Thank you.”

Walters headed out of the store, and just Caelyn and I were left. I slid onto a stool at the counter. It was rare that I waited here for my food, but I couldn’t seem to resist the temptation today. I had this undeniable urge to make sure she was okay.

“So, what’ll it be? Some version of meat and cheese?”

I almost chuckled. Almost. “Sounds good to me. But I know you’ll sneak some vegetables on there somehow.”

“Gotta keep you from getting scurvy.”

I almost choked. “I thought that was from not enough vitamin C. I drink my orange juice.”

Caelyn shook her head and started pulling things out of a fridge below the counter. “There’s vitamin C in vegetables, too. And lots of other nutritious things you need.”

“Good thing I come in here a few times a week then.”

“Good thing.”

An idea was forming in the back of my mind. One that just might be the answer to helping Caelyn out of her predicament and giving me some nice benefits, as well.

The screen door banged open. “Cae Cae!” a young girl’s voice called out. Soon, there was a flash of movement past me.

Caelyn stepped around the counter and lifted the little girl into her arms as she hurled herself at Caelyn. “How was your day?”

“So good. I taught cartwheels at recess, and you left me my favorite cookie in my lunch.”

Caelyn laughed. “Sounds like a good day to me. Where are the rest of the tiny terrors?”

The little girl beamed up at Caelyn. “They’re coming, but they were being too slow, so I ran when I got to the parking lot.” Her gaze caught on me. “Whoa. Are you a giant?”

I wanted to laugh but seeing the easy affection between the girl and Caelyn stole my ability to speak.

“Mia, this is Mr. Griffin. Griffin, this is my little sister, Mia.”

The girl looked so much like Beth had at that age, I struggled to find words. “It’s nice to meet you, Mia.” My voice came out rougher than before, and I tried to force my lips into a smile, but the action felt foreign.

“Hey, sis,” a male voice called.

I turned to see a boy who looked to be about sixteen or seventeen. As soon as he caught sight of me, wariness filled his features. He quickly crossed to his sisters, tugging another girl behind him. “Who’s this?”

Caelyn pressed her lips together as if holding back a laugh. “This is Mr. Griffin. Griffin, this is Will and Ava, my other two siblings. I hope you don’t mind, but they usually hang with me for thirty minutes before Molly takes over. Kids, you can go hang out in the office while I get Mr. Griffin’s sandwich ready.”

“I wanna stay with you and help,” Mia whined.

“I’ll go into the office,” Ava offered. She had taken a step behind her brother as if hiding from me.

“They can stay.” The words were out before I could stop them. Awkward and a little gruff, but Mia beamed.

“See, Mr. Griffin wants me to help make his sandwich.”

Caelyn shook her head. “Well, if that’s the case, we better wash our hands.”

Ava headed for the back office while Will took a seat next to me at the counter, eyeing me carefully. Caelyn helped Mia up onto a little stool by the sink, and they washed their hands, Mia singing some sort of song that counted off the seconds.

“All clean,” she called. “No germies can last to thirty.”

I couldn’t hold in my chuckle this time. “I guess they can’t.”

“I never thought I’d see the day,” Caelyn started, putting a hand over her heart. “I do believe you laughed, Griffin Lockwood. Who knew all it took was a seven-year-old singing about germs?”


About Catherine

Writer of words. Drinker of Diet Cokes. Lover of all things cute and furry, especially her dog. Catherine has had her nose in a book since the time she could read and finally decided to write down some of her own stories. When she’s not writing she can be found exploring her home state of Oregon, listening to true crime podcasts, or searching for her next book boyfriend.

Connect with Catherine
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Blog Tour: Fighting Dirty by Stacey Lynn

On or off the ice, I have no problems fighting dirty to get what I want.

But this is one fight I might just lose.

Fighting Dirty, an all-new irresistible, fake relationship standalone romance in the smoking hot Ice Kings Series from Stacey Lynn is available now!

Get it here:
Amazon | Amazon Worldwide | Kobo | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books | Google Play | Bookbub | Goodreads

Synopsis

There’s nothing I wouldn’t do for my best friend.

Like, hide the fact I’ve been in love with her for years.

Or agree to be her fake boyfriend when we have to return to her hometown for her exes wedding.

Little does Jillian know this is what I’ve been waiting for.

It’s a dream come true. I finally get to touch her and love her in all the ways I’ve been dying to show her.

For one weekend only, she’s mine, even if she thinks it’s fake.

Pretending to love her is easy.

I want her to be mine forever.

Getting Jillian to admit it’s what she wants too, is another thing.

On or off the ice, I have no problems fighting dirty to get what I want.

But this is one fight I might just lose.


Excerpt

“I’ll do it.”

“What?” I mean, that was Becca’s plan, but I still hadn’t decided if I was going to ask Klaus.

He’ll have to pretend to be my boyfriend. Someone who loves me enough to prove I’ve totally moved on from Roman and Julianna. I’m not sure my mental health can handle spending a weekend with Klaus pretending we’re dating and then coming back home after and going back to being friends.

“Sure. Why wouldn’t I do it?”

“Are you sure?” I take a small sip. Too much wine will go straight to my head. My appetite still hasn’t returned since Saturday, mostly because I’ve been dreading this moment. “Because it’s not just a date, I mean, it is, but we’d have to act in love and all that stuff.”

Klaus laughs and pushes off his stool. “I do understand the general idea of being a boyfriend and what that entails.”

A warm, calloused, and gorgeous hand covers mine, forcing both my hand and the avocado oil glass bottle to the counter.

“Look at me.”

When I do, he steals my breath. I’ve been able to hide my reaction to him for years. First I pushed it aside because I was stupidly in love with Roman, and then we were friends.

Are friends.

Right. Friends shouldn’t feel this way or have their body heat just because they’re in close, touching proximity to each other.

Someone should tell that to my vagina.

“What about Bailey?” Bailey’s his on-again, off-again cheerleader girlfriend with the local NBA team. She’s also a pre-med student and sweet as hell. It’s difficult to hate her even when I tried. And before Bailey, there was Barbie and Brianna and Bianca. Klaus has such a fascination with women whose names start with the letter B I hesitated to ever introduce him to Becca. Fortunately, Becca’s immune to his charm.

“I haven’t seen Bailey in months.”

“What?” I ask again. “I thought…”

“We weren’t serious. And she wanted something I couldn’t give her.”

“What’s that?”

“Commitment. My heart.” His steel-blue eyes are perfectly framed with long, golden-brown lashes that blink slowly. “I didn’t feel that way about her, so we ended things, firmly, months ago, and I don’t want to talk about her anymore. I’d love to take you to the wedding. In fact, I want to take you.”

A tiny little bubble of hope lifts my voice. “Really? You’ll pretend with me?”

His eyes bounce from mine, to my nose, to my lips before meeting my gaze. I swear that steely blue deepens into another emotion before he smiles. “Sure. I’ll pretend with you.”

A flutter of warmth skips across my shoulder, to my neck, down my spine.

Pretend to be in love with Klaus Newman?

 I can totally pull that off.

But can I do it while hiding the fact I think I’m already halfway in love with the guy?

I guess we’ll see how good of an actress I am.


About the Author

Stacey Lynn likes her coffee with a dash of sugar, her heroes with a side of bossy, and her wine a deep shade of red.

The author of over thirty romance novels, many of which have been best-selling titles on Amazon, AppleBooks, and Barnes & Noble, she loves being able to turn her vivid imagination into a career that brings entertainment and joy to her readers. Focused on sports romance and emotional, small-town romance, she also loves stretching herself in different genres.

Born in Texas and raised in the Midwest, she now makes her home in North Carolina and loves all things Southern. Together with her ultimate tall, dark, and handsome hero, she has four children. Her life is a chaotic mess that fights with her Type-A, list-making, neurotically organized preferences and she wouldn’t have it any other way.

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