Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Spotlight on Heartless by Vanessa Marie with a guest post and giveaway


~ Book Synopsis ~

All the other girls had a normal childhood, full of Girl Scouts and sleepovers, but Charlie Evans wasn't so lucky. Her life had been spent in and out the Cardiac Care Unit and moving across the country with her military father.

So when Charlie finds out she's moving back to her home town, she hopes things will finally be different. She has learned the hard way not to let anyone in. People always let her down, and it wasn’t easy to trust anyone new. That was until Sam Greyson walks into her life and threatens to knock down every wall she’d ever built to protect herself.

With Sam in the picture, Charlie decides to take one last shot and open herself up. With Sam’s help, she is finally able to let someone see the real, bruised and damaged girl inside. That is until she is forced to make a decision between her own happiness and ruining Sam’s life to be with him. If giving him up meant he could have a normal life…She would do it, in a broken heartbeat.

Title: Heartless (The Chasing Hearts Series #1)

Author: Vanessa Marie

Genre: NA, Romance, 18+ for Mature Content and Language

Publish Date: April 15, 2014

Publisher: Independent Published

Cover by: Sprinkles on Top Studios

Event organized by: Literati Author Services, Inc.

 

Excerpt:

She dove in the water and swam a couple of laps. All she could think about was Sam wanting to talk. What the hell would I even say? She couldn’t tell him the truth, but she didn’t want to lie to him anymore. It tore her apart inside.

As she swam lap after lap, she tried to play things out in her head. Unable to clear her mind, she couldn’t get herself into the headspace she usually did when she swam. There was no way to avoid what she needed to do any longer.

Charlie got out of the pool and wrapped her towel around herself. She rang her hair out and tossed it into a messy bun on top of her head. She walked down to his room and knocked on his sliding door. Oh shit, what did I just do? With her nerves a mess all of a sudden, she turned to run back to her room, but it was too late. He opened the door. All he had on was a pair of shorts and everything in her head disappeared as she stood there with a blank stare on her face.

“Hey, you okay?” he asked, his eyes full of concern. Charlie just shrugged, how the hell was she supposed to concentrate when he looked like that? She regretted knocking on his door and had no idea what she was going to say.

“Come in before someone sees you,” he said, and stepped aside to let her in. She walked past him and he slid the door shut. Crossing the room, she leaned on the table against the wall as he sat on the coffee table across from her. The Civil Wars “The One That Got Away” was playing on his iPod Radio. She’d listened to that song so many times since she’d broken things off she couldn’t keep count. They held each other’s gaze but neither of them said a word.

He leaned forward with his forearms on his knees. “Why’d you come here?”

“I don’t know.” She shrugged.

“Are you ready to talk to me?”

“I don’t know what you want to talk about?”

“Us, what’s going on with you for starters.”

“Nothing’s going on with me,” she said, and re-wrapped her towel around herself.

“Cut the crap Charlie. You haven’t been the same since your surgery. You totally shut me out.”

“You’ll never understand what I’ve been through.”

“You’re right I don’t, but I can be there for you, if you let me. And yet you won’t.”

“I’m just better off alone. I’ve always been on my own. I don’t know how to be any other way.”

Sam stood and walked toward her. “Bullshit. We were great together. You let your guard down and you let me in. You can’t sit here and tell me that you being alone is better than that.”

She looked at her feet and her heart raced faster the closer he got. She couldn’t argue with him. He was right. The only time she’d ever felt whole was when they were together. Sam lifted her chin with his finger and his bare chest was just inches from her. Glancing up, she met his gaze. With the urge to reach out and touch him, she held onto her towel even tighter.

“Look me in the eye and tell me you’re better off alone,” he said, as he cupped her cheek and tears streamed down her face. Wiping them away, he leaned against her, supporting his weight with each hand firmly planted on either side of her on the table. Just inches from her face, she stayed silent, but her eyes said it all.

About the Author

Always the cause of shenanigans, Vanessa is a heavily tattooed, sarcastic motorcycle enthusiast who started her career as a Jeep tech at the age of sixteen. The happily married mother of three little monsters—oops, children—lives in Kentucky by way of Las Vegas, Nevada. Once her life took a different direction—sidelined by Heart Disease at 26 and becoming a pacemaker recipient—she decided to write as a creative outlet, and Heartless was born. She realizes life can be dark clouds and acid rain at times, but her outlook on life puts a positive and sarcastic spin on it all.

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What Inspired me to write my book?

When I was twenty-six I was blindsided with heart disease and ended up getting a pacemaker implanted. I passed out constantly and wasn’t allowed to work anymore. I’d worked all my life as a Jeep mechanic and then I found myself stuck on couch arrest, (with my mom and husband as my wardens) unable to do much of anything.

I was still accepting my new life and had this crazy dream, I couldn’t seem to shake. So, I called my sister and told her all about it. She suggested I write it down and see what happened. It was only one scene, and I knew it would be toward the end of the book. What did I have to lose? I had nothing but time. Nineteen days later I finished the rough draft to my original 100,000 word manuscript. After the shock wore off, I shared it with my family…my very opinionated family, and they said it was too good to not publish. I never set out to write a novel, it was a way for me to deal with what I’d just gone through and it took on this life of its own.

Over the last year, I’ve had four mini strokes and a baby. Through it all, I worked on my manuscript. Little by little, piece by piece. Every extended hospital stay I had, my mom would bring me my laptop and tell me I had no excuse not to write. She believed in me even when I didn’t believe in myself. My inspiration started out as an outlet, just for me. Then it turned into bringing these characters and their world to life, doing them justice. While my baby slept, while I fought through symptoms of my disease I wrote, rewrote and edited. I’ve pushed myself harder than I ever imagined I could. This has been such a labor of love, and all I want is to share my story with readers. I hope they love it as much as I do.

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That truly is inspirational! Vanessa, I feel for you and all that you go through with heart disease. I wish the best possible health for you and much happiness. Congratulations on your book, it sounds like an emotional work of art! :-)

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Cover Reveals of the first four novellas in the Kelly Family series by Lashell Collins with a giveaway


Lashell Collins spent the last twenty years of her life working in Veterinary Hospitals and Garden Centers. But whether she was surrounded by the adorable puppies and kittens she helped care for, or by the beautiful flowers, trees and shrubs, she constantly pursued her favorite pastime – reading romance novels and imagining herself as the heroine in each and every one of them. She began writing as a way to work through her grief after the loss of a few people who were special to her, and she found it to be cathartic, so she kept at it. She self-published her first novel in 2013. Since then, Lashell has self-published ten titles across two series – the Pierced Trilogy (romantic suspense), and the Jagged Ivory Series (contemporary romance) – and is hard at work on another seven titles for this year. All of Lashell’s stories are full of heart and romance, with smart dialogue and spicy sex scenes.

When she’s not writing, Lashell enjoys reading, shopping, eating Chinese food, and riding on the back of her husband’s Harley-Davidson. She loves watching General Hospital and Grimm. She is a huge music fan and is completely obsessed with Slash. Lashell is a member of the Romance Writers of America. Drop her a line; she loves to hear from readers.

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The Kelly Family Series – Books 1-4 by Lashell Collins

Ethan: A Kelly Family Novella

Officer Ethan Kelly is a nice guy. That’s what all the girls say, right before they toss him aside for one of those bad boys. But when he meets rookie officer, Heather Moss, Ethan is determined to show her that a nice guy knows how to treat a real woman.

But Heather isn’t interested. Or at least, she doesn’t want to be. She swore off men a long time ago, and focusing on her career leaves zero room for romance. Even with someone as sweet and sexy as Ethan. But when she saves his life on a robbery call, Heather realizes that he might just be the man to save her from herself.

Barnes & Noble

Storm: A Kelly Family Novella

Bad boy cop Storm Kelly is on the prowl for some action. And the way he’s feeling, he doesn’t much care if it comes in the form of a bar fight or a smart, sassy woman. So when he gets off his Harley and walks into a biker bar, he’s in his element when he finds both … barroom brawl, check. Rescue the damsel in distress, check. And with any luck, that sexy damsel might just turn out to be the perfect sub he’s been searching for.

Nina Fitz is in a world of trouble when the sexy stranger comes to her rescue. Never one to resist a hot guy on a motorcycle, she quickly decides to invite this one home. And when the jerk from the bar decides he’s not through with her, Officer Storm Kelly becomes her protector. But after one night of passion with Storm, Nina is left wondering if she can handle his dark dominant side.

Barnes & Noble


Frankie: A Kelly Family Novella

Frankie Kelly has fought her whole life to prove that she is just as capable as all the men in her testosterone-driven family. And now her hard work and dedication to the police K-9 program is finally beginning to pay off. But when her secret, sexy romance with her sergeant culminates in a marriage proposal, Frankie is thrown for a loop wondering if she’s ready to go public with their clandestine relationship.

John Myles is sure of two things in life - one, that he is dedicated to the K-9 program he leads at the police department. And two, that he loves Frankie Kelly more than life itself. But when she hesitates to accept his proposal, John is rattled. Especially when the job gets in the way, forcing him to send her and her K-9 partner out into the dark night in search of a dangerous murder suspect.

Barnes & Noble


Marina: A Kelly Family Novella

Marina Kelly is sick to death of cops! That’s all she’s known her entire life - her father is a cop, her uncle was a cop. All of her cousins are cops. Even her two brothers and her big sister … all cops. So Marina decided early on that her life would take a much different path, getting as far away from that lifestyle as she could get. And dating a cop is totally out of the question!

Levi Hawks is well aware of Marina’s ‘no cops’ dating rule, so when a supposed chance meeting brings him face-to-face with the sexy shop owner, Levi is determined to hide the fact that he’s a police detective from her for as long as he possibly can. Or at least until he can get her to agree to go out with him!

Barnes & Noble


Lashell will be awarding a $15 Amazon gift card to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

The more you follow the tour and comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found by clicking the banner at the top of the post.


These sound good to me and if I could have reviewed them, I would have. You know how much I like series. :D



Don't forget to enter the Comment Incentive Giveaway. It is a great chance to win a book you'd like to have! The link can be found at the top of the page.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Review ~ LILY BY BONNIE BLISS


Synopsis:

Lily Blackwood is torn between two strong men...

One, Wallace is her perfect idea of a partner, loving, loyal and handsome. The second, Bryn, is her true mate, the man chosen for her by nature and her family. Denial and naivety for nature’s choice, sends her into a rage of independence against the laws of her own destiny, family and her own father.

Wallace Kirk is assigned to protect the beautiful Lily since her birth...

His loyalties are tearing him apart. His own mate, dead, taken from him, fills his thoughts as Lily begs for his attention. She needs him, but not as much as the wolf that prowls in her flesh.

Bryn Kemp's nature and need fill his flesh...

Yet his true mate, the woman chosen for him, denies her destiny. His battle for her and his own pride must overcome her feisty rebellious streak. Both men must fight for her in the throes of oncoming battle and she must make the right choice. A decision that will shape the war.

*Author note: this book was previously published under the title Blackwood: Lily by R.L. Kirk*

Purchase Links:

Amazon Us

Amazon UK

Barnes & Noble





Excerpt:

Lily nodded thanks at the woman who served her coffee. Turning too quickly, she collided with a very firm wall like being. She stumbled backwards and strong arms wrapped around her waist. Lily turned in time to see a quick, large hand catch the cup of coffee before it splattered all over the ground.

Inexplicably, she felt moisture pool between her legs. A whimper parted her lips. She turned breathlessly to look up at the most mesmerizing blue eyes she’d ever seen. Lily couldn’t breathe. Hell, she didn’t want to. She might vomit all over him in her embarrassment.

Her wolf exploded to the surface and she leaned up, tipped over by her rescuer and took in a deep whiff of his scent. It was so right. God, he smelled like the moist woods at night, soap, and salted masculine sweat. The tip of her nose rubbed against the curve of his neck and she opened her mouth. She realized in an instant what she was about to do to the handsome, gorgeous stranger—mark him as hers.

Mine.

Her wolf snarled and tried to become the dominant player in this new unexpected game. She felt something bay back at her. Startled, she realized that the man holding her was wolf. Her fingers gripped his biceps tighter and she opened her mouth to speak.

Slowly, and as if she would break from too rough a movement, the man set her to rights. “Sorry, I thought you wanted to dance there, this is Starbucks right? Not a dance studio?”

Lily found that her lips were flapping like a fish out of water. She sealed her lips shut and swallowed past the lump in her throat. Her heart thumped wildly against her rib cage and she could only stare up at this beautiful man—wolf. “Um, sorry. You must think I’m just—?” Reluctantly, she moved away from him.

His smile was warm and it reached his eyes. His dark hair was trimmed, but the ends at the back of his neck touched the collar of his shirt—rugged and wild.

Like me.

She watched him reach out and brush a strand of hair from her face. It was so tender her heart suddenly started to ache.

He is wolf, run for fucks sakes! Wallace is the only safe wolf.

But she couldn’t. She was rooted to the spot. Super glued to the floor. She wanted to know this man so bad.“Yeah, um, sorry again. I mean, I was thinking about things. Stuff—my friends.”

“Well, maybe you could help me; I’m actually supposed to meet someone, a young woman.”

She swallowed and tilted back a bit. For some reason the thought of him looking for another woman made her jealous—nope it downright pissed her and her wolf off. The barely restrained snarl pressed at her lips that were now tightly pressed together. Once she’d regained some form of humanity, she cleared her throat. “What makes you think I can find her? London is a huge place, and I only deal with a certain type of client in my line of work.”

“I was told to meet her here, her name's Lily Blackwood.”


Meet the Author:

Bonnie Bliss is the brain child of two authors. Bonnie is husband and wife duo that has come together to weave stories of passion, action, betrayal, and ultimate surrender. They have discovered that mixing genres in their thing. Their tastes go dark, and they love to twisted up sweet stories and make them a bit more tense and sexy. Bonnie writes in multiple genres with plans to dabble into more areas of fiction.

One is a Southern California native, the other was born and raised in Yorkshire, England. The husband spends his time giving the wife alpha males with bite. He is a man that needs to see his world in print. He has a panty melting accent, loves listening to music, watching Game of Thrones, and obsessing over Heisenberg. The wife spends her time writing strong women that evolve into their power, they don’t just come out guns blazing. She claims the song California Girls, by Katy Perry is totally accurate. She’s done everything from waitressing, customer service phone rep., Corporate Real Estate, and spent a pretty impression part of her life working for the Disney Corporation—before finding her way into the publishing world with her husband.

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My Thoughts:

This is the first book in a werewolf series that includes vampires too. They are not the sparkly kind!

I really liked some parts of this book and had minor issues with other parts. The general setting and characters, I liked a good bit. :-) The pace and writing style was great. :-) The plot was exciting. :-)

This book had suspense, action, werewolves including a female Alpha who was in denial, a creepy psychotic vampire hybrid, and lots of steamy action and gritty sex talk. ;-)

I should also caution that there is some gore and blood and the psychos commit some very unfriendly acts if you get my drift. I would caution those with a weak stomach and young readers may want to skip this one.

I had some dislike for the attitude of the heroine, Lily. She was supposedly a bad a** female alpha but she seemed more weak and bitchy than anything at times. Also, her mate, kept checking out other wolves and getting turned on by them. I prefer my wolves to be totally committed to their mate and that includes not checking others out. I totally loved Wallace though!

I received an ecopy in exchange for my honest opinion. Lily was thrilling. It was an adrenaline inducing paranormal suspense, that was a sexy and impressive start to a new series.
 

Don't forget to enter the Comment Incentive Giveaway. It is a great chance to win a book you'd like to have! The link can be found at the top of the page.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Review ~ Lost in Me by Lexi Ryan with a giveaway too!

Get ready for NYT Bestselling Author Lexi Ryan’s new series Here and Now! The first novel in the series, LOST IN ME, is a sexy New Adult contemporary romance released April 7th!
Purchase Links:

Amazon US

Amazon UK

iBooks

B&N * Kobo

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20872079-lost-in-me?ac=1

LOST IN ME is the first book in the Here and Now series, a spin-off of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling New Hope series. This sexy amnesia love triangle is intended for mature readers.

The last thing I remember is having drinks at Brady’s and trying to avoid eye-contact with my life-long crush—the gorgeous, unattainable Maximilian Hallowell. They tell me that was a year ago, but I have no memories of anything since then. What I do have is this ring on my finger that Max says he gave me, and this much-thinner body I’ve dreamed of most of my life. Aside from a case of retrograde amnesia, everything seems almost…perfect.

But the deeper I immerse myself into this new world of mine—planning a wedding to a man I don’t remember dating, attempting to run a business I don’t remember starting—the clearer it becomes that nothing is as it seems. Do I have the life I’ve always wanted or is it a facade propped up by secrets I don’t even know I have?

I need answers before I marry Max, and the only person who seems to have them is the angry, tatted, sexy-as-sin rocker Nate Crane. And Nate wants me for himself.

LOST IN ME is not a standalone novel, as the story continues in Here and Now book two, FALL TO YOU, releasing in June.



Adult Excerpt:

When Asher leaves the stage, Nate stays behind, strumming chords to a song I don’t recognize. He lifts his gaze. For five painful beats of my heart, our eyes lock. There’s so much in his eyes. Pain, anger, frustration. I see it all there before he refocuses on his fingers and starts to croon the lonely lyrics of his song.


I’m nobody’s hero, baby. Try not to fall too deep.

I’m nobody’s angel, love, but you were crying in your sleep.

I’m useless, empty, nothing, sugar. Wait around and then you’ll see.

You thought you’d find your answers, but now you’re lost in me.


The words tap into me, loosening something in my chest until I feel like anyone looking at me can see my confusion and the inexplicable aching of my heart.

And when he lifts his head and watches me as he sings the last verse of his song, I don’t move. I don’t hide from those eyes that know too much. I don’t run from that face that could destroy my whole world. I stand transfixed, the words rolling through my veins like they’re part of my blood.

After he strums the final chords, he puts down his guitar and leaves the stage without explanation or promise to return.

My feet are following him before I’ve decided what to do. He heads up the stairs and out back, through the French doors and onto the patio, where he keeps going until he hits the path in front of the river.

He’s trying to escape me. I should be happy, right? The past can stay in the past, and whatever mistake I made with this rocker can be left behind with it. But I can’t let him walk away without answers.

“Stop!” I rush down to the river, my heels sinking into the rain-softened earth. “Who are you?”

He turns slowly, the confusion back on his face. “Is that supposed to be funny? Pretending there was nothing between us wasn’t enough? You need to pretend you don’t even know who I am?”

“I—” Oh my God. The hurt in his eyes. “I don’t know who you are,” I say carefully. “But maybe I should? I was injured and I have amnesia, so I honestly don’t know you.” And if that doesn’t sound like a line from a Lifetime movie, I’m not sure what does.

“Amnesia? You’re kidding me.”

“I’m not.” He starts toward me, and I hold out a hand to stop him. “I’d prefer you to stay over there. Please.”

He pulls back, watching me. “Amnesia,” he repeats.

“Yeah.”

“You don’t know who I am.” It’s not a question—more a realization.

“I don’t know who you are or why you would crawl into my bed in the middle of the night. I don’t understand why—” My breath catches and fat, hot tears spill onto my cheeks. Suddenly this is just all too much. “I don’t understand,” I repeat, and leave it at that.

“You don’t remember anything? Do you know who you are?”

“Yeah. I remember everything up until about a year ago, but the last eleven months are just…gone.”

He drags a hand through his hair, and I’m struck again by how gorgeous he is. Dark messy hair, dark intense eyes. His T-shirt clings to his sculpted arms. Tattoos peek out from the sleeves. No matter how hard I look, I can’t remember being with him. So why do I have this feeling in my chest like my heart knows something I don’t?

“Do I know you?” I ask.

He lets out a huff and stares at the starlit sky. “Yeah. You do.” When he drops his gaze back to meet mine, his eyes are moist with unshed tears. “I’m the idiot who’s in love with you.”

In love with me? “But I’m engaged.”

“I saw that,” he whispers, his gaze flicking back to my hand. “Can I ask? Did that happen before or after the amnesia?”

“Before.”

“Fuck.” The word isn’t screamed or thrown like a stone. He breathes it—exhaling the sound like so much disappointment.

To me, Nate’s a stranger, but to him, I’m…what?

We just stare at each other, him looking heartbroken and angry, me trying to piece it all together in my head and make some sense of this. I’m engaged to Max Hallowell. I’m not the kind of girl who would get engaged to one guy when she’s been sleeping with another.

Am I?

  
Lost In Me Playlist

Anna Nalick—Breathe (2am)

Barenaked Ladies—Odds Are

Dave Matthews Band—The Space Between

Matchbox Twenty—If You’re Gone

Shakira, Rihanna—Can’t Remember to Forget You

Sarah Bareilles—I Choose You

Jason Mraz—I Won’t Give Up

Nine Inch Nails—Something I Can Never Have

A Great Big World—Say Something

P.M. Dawn—I’d Die Without You

Jason Walker—Down

Macy Gray—I Try

James Blunt—You’re Beautiful


Playlist on Lexi’s Spotify:

https://play.spotify.com/user/writerlexiryan/playlist/5y8YBssSSFIRx8WjEmQfrN

 
About the Author

Once a college English professor, I now write full time. I live in rural Indiana, where, when I’m not writing, I get to hang out with my husband and two kids–a six-year-old boy and a two-year-old hellion, er, girl.

Not surprisingly, reading and writing remain my favorite activities, though both come in bits and pieces these days, not the big hunks of time I enjoyed before I had children.

When I’m feeling virtuous, I like to go running (I use that word liberally. I’m really, really slow) or do yoga. Don’t worry, I’m always careful to balance out such activities with a hearty serving of ice cream or a chocolate martini.

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My Thoughts:

Lost In Me was an intriguing labyrinth of memories, thoughts, feelings, doubts and fears.

You see,  Hannah just woke up in the hospital and now has amnesia. There is more that she doesn't know or remember than she does. At least where the last few months are concerned.

At first, she is surprised to find her body is much lighter than she remembers being, her twin sister seems to be stand offish which is odd, and then there is the rock on her finger and the man that says she is his fiance!

I could not stop reading and I was so eager to know what would happen, I almost peeked at the end, I ended up resisting the urge but I was tempted!

There was some romance, but it was more steam and dirty talk than romance. ;-) I was ecstatic!

This book had two hot guys vying for the heroine. I will say that I was not and am not a fan of Max. He seemed to good to be true. I am team Nate all the way!

 I hope that we will find out what happened to her when she had her "accident". And that ending, who wee! I need to know who now! I don't think I can wait till June!

Just so you all know, it isn't really a cliff hanger but there is something mentioned at the very end that makes you really want to get to the next book!

Lost In Me is a book that I would recommend getting lost in. It is extremely easy to do. If you like romantic mysteries, love triangles, heroines that have issues, or great writing style, this book should be on your TBR list. :-)

I received an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion. I thought it was fantastically mesmerizing. I really liked this book and I can't wait for June when I can get my hands on Fall To You.




Don't forget to enter the Comment Incentive Giveaway. It is a great chance to win a book you'd like to have! The link can be found at the top of the page.