#Review: Impossible Promise by Sybil Bartel @SybilBartel @CarinaPress

Description

Three years ago, Layna Blair listened in horror over a telephone line as her parents were murdered. When the killer said she was next, Layna panicked and made a deadly deal—his secret in exchange for her life. She’s paid the price every day since, becoming a prisoner in plain sight.

Marine Sergeant Blaze Johnson offers Layna a way out—her freedom, his rules, no questions asked—and she takes it, despite knowing what her keepers do to people who get too close. She doesn’t know Blaze is fighting his own demons or that beneath his warrior façade is a man on the verge of breaking.

Embarking on a wild revenge mission with Blaze and his smooth-talking best friend, Talon, is not what Layna signed on for. But attempting to run when Blaze has made no secret he intends to make her his is a reckless mistake. With the killer closing in, it’s up to Blaze to save them all—and to Layna to realize that she’s risked the one thing she can’t afford to lose.

Review

Oh my freaking God!

You know it’s kind of weird jumping all the way back to the beginning. I know ultimately how this story turns out because I’ve read all of the later books featuring other characters who are just on the periphery in this book but I just needed to read Blaze and Layna’s story and hot damn, is it lighting a few fires!

This is where it all starts, this is where the groundwork is first laid for all those guys I’ve already fallen for in the later books. Some of them appear here, some are alluded to but ultimately this is about the nightmare Layna is living and Blaze is determined to get her out of.

Layna is one of those characters you can’t help but love, she heard these awful people murder her parents and then found a way to ensure they didn’t do the same to her, even if it did mean being a prisoner. Now Blaze has a solution to that problem and she’s all balls of steel and standing up to fight, trying to keep him safe, while he tries to keep her safe. God that woman is someone I can truly respect.

The balance of her attraction to Blaze versus her friendship with Talon was perfect. I loved Talon in this and it helped me understand him a little more, gave a bit more depth to the joker he often comes across as. He is a truly solid, caring guy deep down and Layna’s relationship with him is a really beautiful one to see develop.

Blaze is such an incredible guy, he’s going through some pretty awful shit during this time and the way he pushes it aside to look after Layna and show her how he cares is moving and I was willing them to find each other and come together.

I am eager to get onto book two and see how their relationship develops. I have a feeling more evil is heading their way but hoping together they will destroy it.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleImpossible Promise
Series: Unchecked #1
AuthorSybil Bartel
Genre: Romance | New Adult | Military | Contemporary | Suspense
Publisher: Carina Press
Publication Date: 23 March 2015
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: N/A
Pages: 276
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US

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#Review: Abuse by Nikki Sex @NikkiSexAuthor

Description

Bonjour, my name is André Chevalier. It has been my joy and my great honor to help those who have lost their way. Not long after I began my journey, I met two such wounded souls.

Renata Koreman, my little mouse. She came to me as a child—shy, mute, injured… broken. It took oh-so many years to start to bring her back to herself! Yet, I could not fully heal her.

Years later, Grant Wilkinson, he too fell into my hands. The ex-Army Ranger was badly disfigured and saw himself as a monster. Isolated by secrets, solitary and self-contained, his colleagues affectionately named him ‘Frosty.’ Yet, how should one behave when besieged by a lifetime of confusion and guilt?

The moment I saw him, I thought of her and I wondered. The eyes, they cannot always see clearly. And the heart? Ah, the heart can only guess at the truth. So it was that I remained uncertain.

Could the mouse and the monster heal each other?

Review

I won this along with a couple of Nikki’s other titles earlier in the year and finally had some time to sit down and read it. Grant Wilkinson is badly disfigured, although we aren’t going to learn why, at least in this novel, we know it wasn’t because of his time in the army, which I think is a nice twist alluding to something more sinister. He keeps to himself not really engaging in life. Since his father’s death he is now the head of the family business, has a nagging mother who wants him married yesterday, and is part of a family of alcoholics, although he is finally in recovery on that front thanks to Andre who refused to see him unless he sobered up.

Renata had a neglected childhood, shipped around abusive foster homes until she ended up on the streets. Eventually she ended up with Andre, a psychologist who looked after her and nurtured her to be the woman she wanted to be.

Despite this book being about Grant and Renata, Andre was very much the star of the show for me. I loved it when he was on the page and I couldn’t wait to read more about him. His dominant personality very much appealed to me and I loved that he had a very non-conformist way of treating his patients, even to the point of almost becoming friends with Grant, and practically adopting Renata.

The majority of this book, is back story, telling how both Grant and Renata have been abused, why they need Andre’s help and painting the picture of why Andre is putting the two characters in each others path’s. There is very little word count dedicated to the two characters together, what time is spent with them together is short and quick setting up for book two in the series.

I was a little disappointed on that front, feeling like just as the juicy stuff got started the book ended but I can also understand why it was written that way and the back story was really important. There is a sinister undertone and it’s clear that the second book is going to have a nasty undertone as that story line really kicks off.

I’m hoping for much more Andre in the second book, and I’m aware there is another series featuring Andre which I’ll definitely be reading…yes I may be crushing on Andre just a bit!

A huge thanks to Nikki Sex for the eBook which I won in a giveaway!

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleAbuse
Series: Abuse #1
Author: Nikki Sex
Genre: Romance | Contemporary | Erotica
Publisher: Ashton Publishing Group
Publication Date: 13 January 2015
Review Format: eBook
Other FormatsPaperback
Pages: 310
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US

#BlogTour: The Sullivans Books 1-3 by Bella Andre @bellaandre @RABTBookTours #Review

Happy Monday! Today I have a treat for you, this is a 3-in-1 from the very wonderful Bella Andre which I’ve had the pleasure to read and review, check out my thoughts below. You can check out the full tour schedule over at RABT Book Tours.

Description

More than 6 million readers have already fallen in love with the Sullivans! Now get ready to meet your new favorite family in Bella Andre’s New York Times and USA Today bestselling contemporary romances with the first three books in the #1 hit series.

“Not since Nora Roberts has anyone been able to write a big family romance series with every book as good as the last! Bella Andre never disappoints!” Revolving Bookcase Reviews

THE LOOK OF LOVE
Chloe Peterson is having a bad night. A really bad night. The large bruise on her cheek can attest to that. And when her car skids off the side of a wet country road straight into a ditch, she’s convinced even the gorgeous guy who rescues her in the middle of the rain storm must be too good to be true. Or is he?

As a successful photographer who frequently travels around the world, Chase Sullivan has his pick of beautiful women, and whenever he’s home in San Francisco, one of his seven siblings is usually up for causing a little fun trouble. Chase thinks his life is great just as it is–until the night he finds Chloe and her totaled car on the side of the road in Napa Valley. Not only has he never met anyone so lovely, both inside and out, but he quickly realizes she has much bigger problems than her damaged car. Soon, he is willing to move mountains to love–and protect–her, but will she let him?

FROM THIS MOMENT ON
For thirty-six years, Marcus Sullivan has been the responsible older brother, stepping in to take care of his seven siblings after their father died when they were children. But when the perfectly ordered future he’s planned for himself turns out to be nothing but a lie, Marcus needs one reckless night to shake free from it all.

Nicola Harding is known throughout the world by only one name – Nico – for her catchy, sensual pop songs. Only, what no one knows about the twenty-five year old singer is that her sex-kitten image is totally false. After a terrible betrayal by a man who loved fame far more than he ever loved her, she vows not to let anyone else get close enough to find out who she really is…or hurt her again. Especially not the gorgeous stranger she meets at a nightclub, even though the hunger – and the sinful promises – in his dark eyes make her want to spill all her secrets.

CAN’T HELP FALLING IN LOVE
Gabe Sullivan risks his life every day as a firefighter in San Francisco. But after learning a brutal lesson about professional boundaries, he knows better than to risk his heart to his fire victims ever again. Especially the brave mother and daughter he saved from a deadly apartment fire…and can’t stop thinking about.

Megan Harris knows she owes the heroic firefighter everything for running into a burning building to save her and her seven-year-old daughter. Everything except her heart. Because after losing her navy pilot husband five years ago, she has vowed to never suffer through loving – and losing – a man with a dangerous job again.

The Sullivans - Tour Banner

Review

This is a three books in one deal so reviewing it is going to be a little different. I don’t want to bundle them into one summary as I feel like that would do each of them an injustice so I will do smaller summaries for each book to give you a feel for what you are getting…

The Look of Love
Chase Sullivan is the first of the Sullivan family we are introduced to, a photographer who is growing tired of his fast and loose lifestyle. When he finds Chloe in a car wreck at the side of the road, a nasty bruise on the side of her face that she clearly didn’t get crashing her car he instantly feels the need to protect her. Taking her to his brothers Vineyard where he was heading for a photo shoot anyway he is determined to win her over. But Chloe isn’t easily won.

It’s like watching a game of cat and mouse with these two, he is so self-assured and she is so determined that a man in her life is the last thing she needs. As they get to know each other the heat is palpable, and they are both so adamant in their chosen paths. It’s hard to know which way either of them are going to go.

From This Moment On
Marcus is the eldest Sullivan at 36 and has just split up with his long term girlfriend who was cheating on him. When he meets 25 year old Nicola in a club he only has one thing on his mind, sex. But Nicola is sweet and kind, and she starts to get under his skin. He is completely oblivious to the fact she is a superstar known to everyone, including his choreographer sister, who works with her, as Nico.

The two can’t help but be drawn together, but Marcus, who likes a quiet and private life and has seen what fame brings to his movie star brother’s life, needs to decide if Nicola is worth sacrificing his privacy. Feeling the torture he was going through was heartbreaking. The same for her, there are times I could sense she would give everything up for the peace of being on Marcus’ vineyard with him. Two people from such different worlds who clearly love each other but making it work seems completely impossible.

Can’t Help Falling In Love
This was my favourite of the three books in this boxset. Gabe is the hero of the Sullivan clan, a firefighter. When he gets injured saving a mother and daughter from an apartment fire they want to than him. The moment he see’s them in the hospital room he knows that Megan is special. But he has an arrangement with himself, no dating people he saves because it never ends well.

Megan’s husband died several years earlier and she has her own arrangement with herself to not date anybody who has a dangerous job. But her own attraction to Gabe is almost too much. These two broke my heart over and over. Their push and pull from and to each other was so hard to keep reading. They both battled themselves and each other so hard trying to deny their feelings and yet through it all the way they felt kept shining through. This is a beautifully written book and if you’re only going to read one of the three make it this one.

One thing I absolutely love in all of these books was how the Epilogue in each is a teaser for the next book in the series, it really makes you want to dip in and keep reading the series, very cleverly done. I’m totally falling in love with this family, I absolutely have to continue reading about the Sullivans, as you read these books all of the family members become a part of your psyche and there is now a need to know what their stories will be and how things will turn out.

Sending a huge thanks to Bella Andre and RABT Book Tours for the eARC so that I could honestly review this book.

Rating

About Bella Andre

Bella Andre - Author Image

Bella Andre is the New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of “The Sullivans”, “The Morrisons” and “The Maverick Billionaires” series.

Having sold more than 6 million books, Bella Andre’s novels have been #1 bestsellers around the world and have appeared on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists 33 times. She has been the #1 Ranked Author at Amazon (on a top 10 list that included Nora Roberts, JK Rowling, James Patterson and Stephen King). Apple iBooks named her one of their “Bestselling Authors of All Time” (alongside Nicholas Sparks, Nora Roberts and EL James). And Publishers Weekly named Oak Press, the publishing company she created to publish her own books, the Fastest-Growing Independent Publisher in the US. After signing a groundbreaking 7-figure print-only deal with Harlequin MIRA, Bella’s “The Sullivans” series is being released in paperback in the US, Canada, and Australia.

Known for “sensual, empowered stories enveloped in heady romance” (Publishers Weekly), her books have been Cosmopolitan Magazine “Red Hot Reads” twice and have been translated into ten languages. Winner of the Award of Excellence, The Washington Post called her “One of the top writers in America”; and she has been featured in Entertainment Weekly, NPR, USA Today, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, and  TIME Magazine. A graduate of Stanford University, she has given keynote speeches at publishing conferences from Copenhagen to Berlin to San Francisco, including a standing-room-only keynote at Book Expo America in New York City.

Bella also writes the New York Times bestselling Four Weddings and a Fiasco series as Lucy Kevin. Her “sweet” contemporary romances also include the new USA Today bestselling Walker Island series written as Lucy Kevin.

If not behind her computer, you can find her reading her favorite authors, hiking, swimming or laughing. Married with two children, Bella splits her time between the Northern California wine country and a 100-year-old log cabin in the Adirondacks.

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Book & Buy Links

TitleThe Sullivans Boxed Set 1-3
Series: The Sullivans #1-3
AuthorBella Andre
Genre: Romance | Anthologies
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 5 December 2015
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: N/A
Pages: 662
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US

#Review: The Definition of Icing by Aven Ellis @AvenEllis

Description

Kenley Hunter finally has everything sorted out. Fresh from studying chocolate making in Europe, she’s gambling everything on her new business, Confection Consultations.

All Kenley wants in life is people to take her seriously, to see the person on the inside rather than the blond beauty on the outside. While pursuing her passion of chocolate, Kenley discovered people seek her knowledge. They see past the exterior and fall for the chocolate delights in front of them.

So with work as her focus, Kenley is ready to start her career in Dallas. Men are out of her recipe, because she fears that once they get past her looks, they’ll be disappointed in what they find. Kenley decides she’s all about the chocolate now.

Or is she?

Because a chance meeting with new Dallas Demon hockey star Nate Johansson might change everything. Sent to Dallas in a blockbuster trade, Nate is somewhere he doesn’t want to be, for reasons that have caused him heartbreak on multiple levels. Nate knows he will never trust a woman again after what happened to him in Minnesota.

But when he meets a woman with an intriguing name and a passion for chocolate, Nate isn’t so sure about his theory. And he might just learn a definition of icing other than the one used in hockey with Kenley as his guide…

Review

I’ve been on a mission to read Aven Ellis’ back catalogue that I missed before I discovered her work, this is one of those books. I’ve learned now that to pick up an Aven Ellis book is to dive into a happy comfortable world where two people are going to discover what true love really means.

In The Definition of Icing we meet Kenley. Kenley runs Confection Consultations, she is a chocolate specialist who ensures that the people she works with love and understand chocolate just as much as she does when she is finished.

On a photo shoot ice hockey star Nate steps in to help her handle an awkward situation and the intense attraction between the two in incredible. They are both people who have been terribly hurt in the past but as readers we get to watch as they negotiate getting to know each other and learning what it means to trust someone again.

These are two people who are completely adorable to watch falling in love and this, as with all of Aven Ellis’ books, is an absolute treat, although you may want a few bars of chocolate by your side for this one!

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleThe Definition of Icing
Series: Dallas Demons #2
Author: Aven Ellis
Genre: Romance | Contemporary | Sports | Sports Romance
Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing
Publication Date: 27 May 2015
Review Format: eBook
Other FormatsPaperback
Pages: 274
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Wordery

#Review: The Air He Breathes by Brittainy C Cherry @BrittainyCherry

Description

I was warned about Tristan Cole.

“Stay away from him,” people said.
“He’s cruel.”
“He’s cold.”
“He’s damaged.”

It’s easy to judge a man because of his past. To look at Tristan and see a monster.

But I couldn’t do that. I had to accept the wreckage that lived inside of him because it also lived inside of me.

We were both empty.
We were both looking for something else. Something more.
We both wanted to put together the shattered pieces of our yesterdays.

Then perhaps we could finally remember how to breathe.

Review

It is almost impossible to find the words to describe this book. Brittainy Cherry has taken two of the most heartbreaking situations and from them moulded a perfect love story.

Lizzie’s Husband who she adored and worshipped, who adored and worshipped her back is killed and the only thing that keeps her moving each day is their daughter Emma. When she finally moves back to their home having run away to her Mother’s in grief, she meets her new next door neighbour Tristan, the man everybody in the town is warning her to stay away from.

Tristan has spiralled, cutting himself off from the world after losing his entire world. His wife and son killed in a freak accident. He doesn’t know how to be a real person without them in his life and now he just floats through each day. But his new next door neighbour is persistently pushing for a friendship he doesn’t have to give.

My heart broke from the early pages in this book, seeing these two forge an uncomfortable friendship, their shared grief helping them find a bond that nobody else could possibly understand. But beyond that grief they were so perfectly suited to each other. Emma adopting Tristan as a male role model and friend.

This is not a book to read if you aren’t willing to shed a few tears and have your heart torn from your chest time and again. These are characters who are going to make mistakes and have their hearts ripped from their chests before they find any true happiness and when they find out the truth behind the death of their loved one’s it’s truly devastating.

I wasn’t entirely sure what I was getting when I picked this novel up but what I received was a stunningly written and heartbreaking novel which took me on an emotional roller-coaster. This is an author I will definitely be reading more by.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleThe Air He Breathes
Series: Elements #1
Author: Brittainy C Cherry
Genre: Romance | Contemporary
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 25 September 2015
Review Format: eBook
Other FormatsPaperback | Audio
Pages: 308
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US

#BookBlitz: In Her Blood by Janice Jones @jrjones65 @amberjackpub @XpressoTours #Excerpt #Giveaway

Welcome to this book blitz organised by Xpresso Book Tours. Check out more about this book below along with an excerpt.

Description

Alex Stone wants to pretend the supernatural doesn’t exist.

As the owner of a hot new clothing line, the only thing she’s killing is her competition – until she gets a phone call from her past. As the Dagger, she was a member of the covert ops team tasked with hunting threats of the supernatural kind. For the super soldiers of Night Command, the rules were simple: take the pills, fight the bad guys, and live to tell no one. After putting a bad-ass vampire on ice landed her in a padded cell, Alex thought she’d left the hunting game for good. Now she’s in the orbit of a handsome vampire with a problem. And sometimes keeping secrets bites.

Jason Stavros has the best of everything and life eternal. To the human world, Jason was just a poor boy who made it to the top. For a human turned vampire, the fight for a place in the inner circle of the ruling class hinges on one task: convince the best ex-vampire hunting assassin to become his personal bodyguard and save them all.

Join Alex, Jason and a new team of young hunters as two worlds unite against a common enemy. As the body count begins to rise, Alex and the Tracker Team fight friends and enemies to find the answers they seek.

What’s been happening in the dark will finally come to light.

In Her Blood - Blitz Banner

Excerpt

In the center of the room were two models, two huge bodyguards and one gorgeous, tall, dark-haired man. His tailored suit and leather shoes looked new and expensive. Against the shiny marble floors and overhead lighting, he looked human, almost.

 

It was obvious Jason Stavros took pride in his appearance. Judging by the way he stood, it was apparent confidence was not an issue he struggled with. Alex rolled her eyes as his dazzling smile melted everyone else in sight. His longish nose had a small rise in the bridge. It had been broken long before he was turned; becoming a vampire wouldn’t erase the past.

 

The face of the limited edition Zenith timepiece on his left wrist sparkled as he talked to the pretty redhead to his right. Against the rich fabric of the jacket sleeve, his watch looked even more expensive. Most young guys would throw a Rolex on their wrists to show how much they were worth, but a Tourbillon Quantieme made a different kind of statement. His accessory announced he had taste and the means to express it in the most unexpected ways. Wearing a watch that cost more than a Ferrari was pretty unexpected.

 

As she stepped back, her head bumped the wall with a hollow thud. “Fuck me,” she whispered.

About Janice Jones

Janice Jones - Author Image

Graduating with a Masters in Creative Writing from Southern New Hampshire University, Janice’s first novel, In Her Blood, is the first book in her vampire adventure series The Dagger Chronicles. This series introduces you to the world of Alexa “Alex” Stone, ex-vampire hunter and assassin turned fashion mogul. Hiding in plain sight, Alex must return to the world of the supernatural in order protect a handsome vampire and her own secrets. Look for Book Two, By Blood Sworn to hit online outlets soon. Janice is looking forward to readers of New Adult Fiction and Vampire lore to embrace a new kind of action adventure hero, a woman with many secrets and many stories to tell.
(Author photo courtesy of Omar Ramos Photography www.omarramosphotography.com/ Makeup by LaChandra Middlebrooks)

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Giveaway

 

  • Giveaway ButtonSigned Copy In Her Blood & $50 Amazon Gift Card

Blitz-Wide International Giveaway ends July 13th.

 

Book & Buy Links

TitleIn Her Blood
Series: The Dagger Chronicles #1
Author: Janice Jones
Genre: New Adult | Romance | Supernatural
Publisher: Amberjack Publishing
Publication Date: 1 May 2015
Review Format: N/A
Other Formats: eBook | Paperback
Pages: 349
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Waterstones | Foyles | Book Depository | SpeedyHen | Wordery

#Review: Mother of Wolves by J. Aislynn d’Merricksson @cala_gobraith

Description

It is a year of awakening and change for Kalla kyl’Solidor – the Wolf Who Sleeps. After a fire wyvern attacks her home, she sets on a harsh path to self-discovery.

With the future of their world at stake, Kalla and her magister embark on a journey that will shake the foundations of De Sikkari and shape their destiny.

From the depths of Xibalba to the plains of Arkkadia, and the soaring heights of the sky continent of Argoth, they journey to claim their rightful place in the world, and to put an end to the source of destruction before chaos claims the realm.

Review

This isn’t a particularly easy review to write, I stopped reading at about 85% but I can’t offer you a good reason for my reaching the point where I couldn’t read anymore other than to say I didn’t gel with this book and despite pursuing for a large chunk I didn’t find a connection anywhere.

Kalla is a mage who takes on a new magister, Aleister, and the pair of them set out on a journey to track down the culprits of a wyvern attack on Kalla’s home. This is a strongly written epic fantasy with a steampunk twist. There is  a journey through the world of De Sikkari meeting many different creatures with a host of powers.

d’Merricksson is a strong writer and storyweaver, if you trawl the reviews for this book you will see nothing but praise to back this up. So why couldn’t I connect and engage with this story? I don’t know. I just didn’t connect with the characters or the story. Nothing jumped off of the page and grabbed me in the way I hoped.

The cover gave me the impression of a paranormal romance and this is definitely not what you get with this book, I think that whilst the cover isn’t the be all and end all the cover on this book doesn’t speak to the books content or tone at all.

I can’t sit here and write this picking holes in a book that doesn’t have anything to pick holes in, this was in my opinion a personality clash, a book that wasn’t meant to be for me. I do think this is a book that many others will thoroughly enjoy and I look forward to seeing the reviews rolling in!

A huge thank you to J. Aislynn d’Merricksson for a review copy of this book with which to provide my honest review.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleMother of Wolves
SeriesEvalyce Worldshaper #1
Author: J. Aislynn d’Merrickson
Genre: Fantasy | Epic Fantasy | Steampunk
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 12 July 2015
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Paperback
Pages: 158
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Wordery