Friday, April 28, 2017

Blogtour: Fishy Riot by Lindsay Black





Please say hello to Lindsay Black and 

Fishy Riot 





Blurb:

Most people think riot squad officer Taylor Jameson is an asshole. Little do they know his apparent indifference stems from having a meddlesome family always butting into his business. And little does Taylor know he’s about to stumble into a situation that’ll make indifference impossible.

When everything goes horribly wrong at a political rally on a harbour ferry, Taylor encounters Sietta Salisbury. The son of a wealthy politician, Sietta is a revered—but presumed dead—musician, and an enigma who is so strange, Taylor is compelled to look into his background. What he discovers draws him into a bizarre mess of prisoners, politics, and attempted murder that makes him realise what he’s been missing.

Falling in love isn’t hard. Trying to convince someone else you’re worth loving despite your crazy family and the people trying to kill you? That’s a whole other can of worms.

Get the book:


  




So, Fishy Riot has been out for a few days now. If you’ve read it, thank you for reading and I really hope you had some fun. Obviously, it’s not a serious book. It’s an action comedy romance, and it’s set in Australia. Nothing in that sentence implies seriousness, so… So! If you haven’t read it and you want a good laugh then this might be the book for you! It’s hard to say, since it is in all honestly very, very… unserious. I thought for sure that unserious was not a word. Turns out it is and I’ve learnt my new thing for the day.
At this point it’s hard to know what to talk about, I’ve talked about pretty silly things on this little blog tour, including love, piss, utes and weird stuff, so I thought I would talk about Emma (because that makes sense?).
I decided on this because most people who’ve read Fishy Riot end up talking about Emma. She’s Taylor’s niece, and she’s a bit of a riot (ha!). She’s one of my favourite characters, mostly because you get to see just how crazy family can be through the honesty of a five year old. But also because you realise how we get to be so crazy, watching our parents be crazy and all that.
A lot of people have asked if Emma was inspired by my own childhood. Sadly, if anyone in Fishy Riot reflects me as a child it’s probably Jay, Emma’s big brother and all-round trouble maker. He’s the curious one, always destroying things in his path to see what might happen next. Emma is much more my little sister in that regard, though my real life sister was far more polite than Emma could ever hope to be!
Just to give you a great summary of me in childhood, this pretty much does it:




At some point that morning my mother clearly thought it advisable to dress me nicely in a white dress, do my hair complete with ribbons and no doubt take me somewhere lovely, like church. Unfortunately, that never lasted long and that’s me in said lovely white dress, stomping through the sandpit (who knows where my shoes went), probably having kicked over my brother’s tonka truck (that’s not my brother in the photo, that kid’s just plain scared in the corner and staying clear of me), no doubt storming toward some poor unsuspecting sod with a bellowing battle cry (alternatively, I may have spotted a toad I felt needed destroying). At least I have a band-aid over my latest injury instead of spurting blood from a new one. This image really does sum up my childhood, so as I said, I was much more Jay than Emma. Unfortunately, for my parents.
Childhood in country Australia is great. Everyone in your town knows you (and knows not to invite you to things before proofing their home against your specific level of destructiveness, again I’m so sorry mum). When I hear stories of my partner’s childhood it doesn’t sound as great, mostly because he grew up in Melbourne and Sydney. Parents seem far more fearful in cities, with good reason. There’s traffic and strangers and well….traffic? I have no idea what’s in cities, I avoid them like the plague, obviously. But in country towns there are cows and magpies to look out for and the occasional kangaroo or snake to flee and that’s about it. You can walk to school. You can walk home from piano practise. You can throw a screaming fit in the supermarket because you lost the last scrap of your ruggie and everyone will laugh at you while helping your parents find the stupid thing. (Yes, that really happened. So sorry, Mum!) The point of this is I assume Emma has had a strange mix of mine and my partner’s upbringing. She’s in Sydney, and she’s sheltered as a result, but she’s also surrounded by a massive family of very unique individuals who don’t treat her like glass. That has to rub off on you, and clearly…does.
If you have any ridiculous photos of your childhood, feel free to share. In the meantime, here’s an excerpt, featuring the lovely Emma.





He fell asleep. When he woke, it was not Sietta’s eyes staring at him, nor Sietta’s face. Little flecks of brown, completely out of place in the eyes of any Jameson, which told him exactly who it was. Not that he needed that to tell him, when there was that much fruit on the kid’s breath.
“Emma… back off.”
“Give her a break, ever since she heard Uncle Tay was let out of the hospital, she’s wanted to come and make sure your face was okay.” Brayden’s voice came from somewhere near the kitchen.
“My face is fine, Em,” Taylor grumbled in response, reaching down to haul her into his lap as he sat up and searched the living room. He spotted Brayden by the couch, handing Sietta a steaming mug of what smelled like ginger tea.
“You let him in?”
Sietta froze, eyes flicking from one brother to the other before settling on Taylor. “Was I not supposed to?”
Taylor shook his head, and Brayden laughed, going to collapse on the other couch, looking tired, as usual. “Don’t mind Taylor, he prefers to avoid family as much as possible.”
“But…. Clay lives here,” Sietta pointed out, less confusion in his voice and more amusement as he sipped his tea.
“Uncle Clay and Uncle Tay are the same soul split in two bodies,” Emma settled in Taylor’s lap like a small princess. Somewhat literally, as she was dressed as Elsa, her favourite Disney princess, along with the rest of the world under six.
“I don’t think that’s quite right,” Brayden told his daughter, but she scrunched up her nose at him.
“Nanna said it!” As if that would magically make it saner.
“See, not right, then,” Taylor agreed with Brayden.
“Well, she was right about your face!” Emma reached up to poke the dark purple bruises on the side of his head, making him hiss and bat her hands away. “Why did Uncle Clay let the thing hurt your face?”
“What’s your preoccupation with my face?”

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Author Of The Month - Rhys Ford - Grand Finale



Welcome to our Grand Finale celebrations for the amazingly talented 







For today's post, we'll take a look at Hellsinger and Half Moon Bay, with excerpts from the latter, and we'll have our Q&A with Rhys. All the way at the bottom, there's also one more chance to win.


Let's begin with Fish And Ghosts




Blurb:

When his Uncle Mortimer died and left him Hoxne Grange, the family’s Gilded Age estate, Tristan Pryce knew he wasn’t going to have an easy time of it. He was to be the second generation of Pryces to serve as a caretaker for the estate, a way station for spirits on their final steps to the afterlife. The ghosts were the simple part. He’d been seeing boo-wigglies since he was a child. No, the difficult part was his own family. Determined to establish Tristan’s insanity, his loving relatives hire Dr. Wolf Kincaid and his paranormal researchers, Hellsinger Investigations, to prove the Grange is not haunted.

Skeptic Wolf Kincaid has made it his life’s work to debunk the supernatural. After years of cons and fakes, he can’t wait to reveal the Grange’s ghostly activity is just badly leveled floorboards and a drafty old house. The Grange has more than a few surprises for him, including its prickly, reclusive owner. Tristan Pryce is much less insane and much more attractive than Wolf wants to admit and when his Hellsinger team unwittingly release a ghostly serial killer on the Grange, Wolf is torn between his skepticism and protecting the man he’d been sent to discredit.




Get the book:





And the sequel, Duck Duck Ghost





Blurb:

Paranormal investigator Wolf Kincaid knows what his foot tastes like.

Mostly because he stuck it firmly in his mouth when his lover, Tristan Pryce, accidentally drugged him with a batch of psychotropic baklava. Needing to patch things up between them, Wolf drags Tristan to San Luis Obispo, hoping Tristan’s medium ability can help evict a troublesome spirit haunting an old farmhouse.

With Wolf’s sister handling Hoxne Grange’s spectral visitors, Tristan finds himself in the unique position of being able to leave home for the first time in forever, but Wolf’s roughshod treatment is the least of his worries. Tristan’s ad-hoc portal for passing spirits seems to be getting fewer and fewer guests, and despite his concern he’s broken his home, Tristan agrees to help Wolf’s cousin, Sey, kick her poltergeist to the proverbial curb.

San Luis Obispo brings its own bushel of troubles. Tristan’s ghost whispering skill is challenged not only by a terrorizing haunting but also by Wolf’s skeptical older cousin, Cin. Bookended by a pair of aggressive Kincaids, Tristan soon finds himself in a spectral battle that threatens not only his sanity but also his relationship with Wolf, the first man he’s ever loved.





Get the book:






From Half Moon Bay, Fish Stick Fridays


Blurb:

Deacon Reid was born bad to the bone with no intention of changing. A lifetime of law-bending and living on the edge suited him just fine—until his baby sister died and he found himself raising her little girl.

Staring down a family history of bad decisions and reaped consequences, Deacon cashes in everything he owns, purchases an auto shop in Half Moon Bay, and takes his niece, Zig, far away from the drug dens and murderous streets they grew up on. Zig deserves a better life than what he had, and Deacon is determined to give it to her.

Lang Harris is stunned when Zig, a little girl in combat boots and a purple tutu blows into his bookstore, and then he’s left speechless when her uncle, Deacon Reid walks in, hot on her heels. Lang always played it safe but Deacon tempts him to step over the line… just a little bit.

More than a little bit. And Lang is willing to be tempted.

Unfortunately, Zig isn’t the only bit of chaos dropped into Half Moon Bay. Violence and death strikes leaving Deacon scrambling to fight off a killer before he loses not only Zig but Lang too.


Excerpt:



There were very few little girls in Lang’s life. And by few, he concluded, he meant none. None of his nearby siblings had children, and the Harrises’ extended family truncated pretty quickly when searching for anyone not old enough to drive.

So when Deacon’s niece stomped into his shop and flopped onto a chair where Fafhrd lounged, Lang’s first instinct was to save her from the cat.

His second reaction was to save the cat from her.

Lang studied Zig from his spot behind the counter. They’d had a few bits of contact since she’d come to town, mostly shouts of hello as she trudged by after being dropped off by a school bus, and a long ten-minute conversation about unicorns and rhinos once when Lang was covering the checkout on a rainy afternoon. He’d be the first to admit he was more focused on her uncle, but Zig was fairly pleasant as children went.

The little girl sitting down next to Fafhrd seemed about as far from pleasant as humanly possible. Lang’d never seen her without a frilly skirt of some kind, regardless of any other clothing she wore, and today was no exception. Unlike other days, Zig’d gone from disheveled and was now firmly ensconced into grubby. She’d definitely been in an altercation of some kind. One eye sported a growing swell, while the other seemed to be on the tail end of a bruise. Mud caked one side of her once-pink tutu, and her green-striped leggings were ripped across her knees and in spots on her calves. Her eye-bleeding orange socks were similarly speckled with dirt and grass stains, the left one wadded down around the top of her boot.

“I need to pet your cat.”

There was no arguing with her. She’d obviously reached her breaking point, and it seemed like only a feline interaction would make it better.

“It’s up to him,” Lang replied softly. “If he growls, then it’s a no.”

“He won’t growl,” Zig declared, giving Fafhrd a test rub along his ears. “Cats know when you’ve had a fucking shitty day.”

Surprisingly, Fafhrd didn’t seem to mind the company, vibrating with deep, rumbling purrs as Zig worked her way in next to him and scratched at his head. Torn between asking her if she wanted hot chocolate or needed anything, Lang came out from behind the counter as her uncle strode into view outside. The bells over the door rang, clanging softly together to announce the man’s presence, as if the heat of his hard body wasn’t enough of a notice. Deacon made eye contact with Lang, a question poised on his strong lips, then spotted Zig sitting in the chair near the fireplace.

Zig’s uncle made a face, regretful and slightly sad. “Sorry, I’ll—”

“No, no, don’t worry about it. Looks like she needs….” Lang glanced over to where Fafhrd lay sprawled over Zig’s lap. “Apparently she needs a cat fix.”

“Yeah, kind of a crappy day, I think. I’ll pay for cleaning the chairs.” Deacon crossed over the space between the door and the counter in three powerful strides. “Think she brought about ten pounds of mud in with her.”

“It’s fine. They’re treated for that sort of thing. Mud’s nothing compared to cat hork.” Lang’s insides warmed at Deacon’s broad, wistful smile. “She can stay if she wants. She’s not in the way.”

The mechanic’s off-kilter grin punched Lang in the stomach, and he spread his hands on the counter to steady himself. Up close, Deacon Reid was deadly. Masculine with a hint of pretty, he was perfection in his flaws. From the quirk of his lips twisting to the side in a wry smile to the ruffled spiky mess of his choppy brown hair, he was a warm, long stretch of strength and tenderness smelling of sunshine, masculine heat, and lemons.




Get the book:




And the 2nd book, Hanging The Stars


Blurb:

Angel Daniels grew up hard, one step ahead of the law and always looking over his shoulder. A grifter’s son, he’d learned every con and trick in the book but ached for a normal life. Once out on his own, Angel returns to Half Moon Bay where he once found…and then lost…love.

Now, Angel’s life is a frantic mess of schedules and chaos. Between running his bakery and raising his troubled eleven-year-old half-brother, Roman, Angel has a hectic but happy life. Then West Harris returns to Half Moon Bay and threatens to break Angel all over again by taking away the only home he and Rome ever had.

When they were young, Angel taught West how to love and laugh but when Angel moved on, West locked his heart up and threw away the key. Older and hardened, West returns to Half Moon and finds himself face-to-face with the man he’d lost. Now, West is torn between killing Angel or holding him tight.

But rekindling their passionate relationship is jeopardized as someone wants one or both of them dead, and as the terrifying danger mounts, neither man knows if the menace will bring them together or forever tear them apart.


Excerpt:

Buying the house on the bluff had been irrational. West had no intention of ever living at Half Moon Bay. It was too full of memories—painful ones at that—but the house was… perfect. Even if he’d been the one who’d preferred a stately manor with a deep, dark cave in its bowels, the bright white crystalline house on the shore seemed like destiny.

He’d thought it funny how dreams died quietly, their passing unmarked until the moment when he’d stood in the middle of a hard-angled castle, and it made him long for a gray-eyed, sweet-mouthed love he’d turned his back on.

“What’d ya get me?” Zig plopped the bag on a backless couch set in front of the wall of windows. The sun flirted with the gold in her hair, teasing out the brightness in her curls. “Can I open it?”

“Yes, you can open it, brat,” West murmured. “Just let me get settled. Forget someone tried to run my car over with their truck?”

“Yeah, kinda.” Zig bared her teeth at him in a mockery of a smile. “I just figured you were moving slow ’cause you’re old.”

“Nice. I’m sure Lang loves to be called old by someone younger than most of his socks,” he teased back.

“Crap.” She grimaced. “You just don’t look alike. Kind of. You look different.”

“Same face, same body,” West reminded her. “I just got more of the personality and brains.”

“Says the person who regularly pisses enough people off he needs a bodyguard,” Lang shot back as he took off his jacket. “And Zig, you can’t just—West is….”

“Take what’s offered and then take more when no one’s looking?” Zig parroted West back at her father. “What? He says that’s what you do.”

“Good to know someone’s listening,” West drawled. “Leave her alone, Lang. She’s busy right now.”

As much as he reluctantly liked Lang’s adopted daughter and mostly tolerated the grease monkey his brother’d married, their happy, all-smiles family was a little much to take. To be fair, it wasn’t all smiles. There were dark days, struggles when Zig fought with her fear of every adult in her life leaving her alone. Lang’s marriage hadn’t been a magic cure for that. Her changing her name to Zig Harris-Reid helped, but there were still times when the world pressed in too close for his niece, and from his point of view, spoiling the hell out of her seemed to make her smile.

Her fathers were not so pleased about it, which made West even happier for some age-old sibling perverse reason.


The couch seemed too far away, but West was going to be damned if he let anyone see how much it hurt to move. The painkillers he’d been given rattled about in one of the bags Marzo was carrying in, and his jaw hurt from clenching his teeth. The cushions collapsed around him when West finally eased onto one of the couches, and something sharp dug into his back, probably his wallet or phone in his pocket, but he didn’t care. He was off his feet, and the pounding in his head faded a bit as he closed his eyes and blocked out the sunlight.



Get the book:





Our Q&A with Rhys:


1. What inspires you? What gets you writing?

I love the examination of personalities and how they fit into one another. Toss in a love for cities and world building and you’ve pretty much got what I love about writing. There’s a flavour to a book, a recipe a writer has cooked up for us to taste. Writing is like cooking, some dishes take a delicate hand while others are like a stir fry with an explosion of savory flavours.


2. What's your writing process? Seat of your pants, lots of sticky notes, complex spreadsheets? 

I sit down. Figure out the who of what I’m going to write and then fit in the pieces around them. I do plot a little bit, especially around the murder mysteries because you’ve got to know where you’re going. I also love finding the little truffles of ideas I get while I write because something will click in my brain that changes the whole book. But I do have notes and a bible to keep me on track.

3. Which character from your books is your favorite, and why?

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Audiobook Review: Practice Makes Perfect by Jay Northcote

From The Blurb:
Listening Time: 5 hrs. 15 min.  Getting experience with the guy next door seems like a great idea-until the lines blur. Dev, a geeky first year physics student, has zero sexual experience and he's determined to change that ASAP. After a bad time in halls of residence, he's starting the summer term with different housemates and a new plan of action. Ewan lives in the house next door to Dev. He's young, free and single, and isn't looking to change that anytime soon. When awkward circumstances throw them together, Ewan offers to help Dev out in the bedroom in return for maths tutoring, and Dev jumps at the chance. They work their way through Dev's sex-to-do list, but what starts as a perfect no-strings arrangement gets more complicated as their feelings for each other begin to grow. If they're going to turn their lessons in lovemaking into something more permanent, they need to work out how they feel about each other-before they get to the end of Dev's list.

Karen's rating:




Dev's just moved out of his residence at Uni because things weren't working out for him there and as luck would have it a friend of his has helped him move into a house with a few other students and a really hot neighbor, named Ewan.

Ewan's Scottish and he's a ginger. He's also a psychology student having trouble with one of his classes...a class that involves numbers. Dev's good with numbers and Dev likes to make list...list of things he wants to do. One of those things on his list involves getting some experience...experience of a personal and intimate nature. So it only seems natural that Dev who's good with numbers and Ewan who's more than happy to help Dev get intimate with him strike a bargain...a gentleman's agreement if you will.

Things get a bit more complicated when both men realize that their feelings have gone well beyond the boundaries of their gentleman's agreement and neither of them wants things to end but they're not sure where they stand with each other or how to find out without risking their hearts.

'Practice Makes Perfect' is the third book in Jay Northcote's series 'Housemates' and while each book can be read as a standalone, I never felt like I was missing anything from this story in spite of the fact that characters from the first two books made appearances in Dev and Ewan's story, as soon as time permits I plan on going back to the beginning to read those first two stories not because I need to but because I enjoyed this book that much and this is a way to get more.

'Practice Makes Perfect' was awesome, I truly don't remember the last time I was so wonderfully enchanted by a story. Dev is so sweet and naive and just totally adorkable and while Ewan may be more worldly and experienced than Dev, he's also a very sweet and kind person and even before there's an emotional connection between these two men, he cares about Dev on a basic decent human being level.

Humor can be a wonderful thing in a story, but it doesn't always work for each person for a number of reasons. Sometimes we can feel like maybe the author is trying to hard or we just don't get it, maybe it feels like the humor's coming at someone's expense, whatever there's a myriad of reasons but for me the humorous moments in this story were spot on and this story quickly became a happy place for me. I laughed and smiled and yes, I may have found myself talking to the characters from time to time...hey, don't judge me, if guys can yell at the television when their hockey/baseball/football/whatever team screws-up, I can talk to my audio books from time to time.

Blogtour: Best New Artist by BA Tortuga




Please say hello to BA Tortuga and 

Best New Artist 





Blurb:

Kasey “Tuff” Tuffman just told Nashville to kiss his you know what. After winning Best New Artist at an award show, he knows it’s time to head back home to Texas. So after a very public meltdown, Tuff makes his way to Austin, where the Red Dirt music lives large.

Jonah Littlejohn once loved KT more than anything in the world. When KT loses it on national TV, Jonah knows he has to reach out and offer his home studio as a place to heal and make music. A bad relationship has left Jonah broken and wary of romance, but he wants to help his old lover out.

Seeing Jonah again proves to Tuff that he’s made the right decision. Now all he has to do is convince Jonah that they’re the most perfect duet there’s ever been.



Get the book:





Red Dirt Music and Being Who You Are


Hey y’all. I’m BA Tortuga, resident redneck and lover of all things country music.


Seriously. I’m an addict. Like 30,000 songs on my iTunes addicted.


Of all the songs, of all the genres – Texas Red Dirt is my absolute favorite. What makes it Red Dirt?


No one seems to know.


To me it’s that attitude of “I don’t care what Nashville is doing. I don’t care what the big machine wants. I’ll play what I want, tour when I want, and look like me.”


Now, is this everyone’s definition? God no. But somehow to me? This one resonates.


My wife would say it’s the cowboy in me. The person that refuses to become something she’s not because it’s easier or more popular. I’d tell you that there are people that are constitutionally incapable of being someone they’re not, so they do their best and blunder on.


This is Best New Artist in a nutshell. It’s about figuring out who you are and blundering on -- with a Red Dirt soundtrack.


Much love, y’all.
BA



About the author:

Release Blitz: Unhinged by Rick R. Reed





Buy Links: JMS Books | Amazon US | Amazon UK


Paperback: JMS Books 



Publisher: JMS Books 



Length: 65,315 words



Blurb


Horror. Romance. The two seem at odds, yet in provocative author Rick R. Reed’s hands, the pair merge like a match made in heaven ... or hell.

Prepare for a dark journey into an unhinged world populated by ordinary and extraordinary monsters. Unhinged brings you sometimes chilling, sometimes romantic, sometimes hilarious, but always thought-provoking tales.

Among them you’ll find a chilling and redemptive ghost story, a most unusual and shocking first meeting for two lovers, a story revolving around one of the 20th Century’s most horrific serial killers, and a darkly comic take on the vampire mythos. This collection will make your heart race with passion ... in all its forms.

Contains the stories: Echoes, How I Met My Man, The Man from Milwaukee, Sluggo Snares a Vampire, The Ghost in #9, and Incubus.







Excerpt (From "Echoes")

Instead, a complete stranger stood in the doorway. He was about my age, mid-twenties, and stood about five-foot-four with a too-thin frame that made me want to feed him a few Giordano’s pizzas. The guy had dark, buzzed hair and a matching goatee. His skin, even in this dim light, looked ashen, marred by sores in various stages of healing. He stood just over the threshold and the weird thing was, it was like he didn’t even see me. Dark eyes darted about our new home, as if he were looking for something.

“Hello?” I said, standing still. I think I was too weirded out to be scared at this point. I just assumed maybe he had the wrong apartment. He certainly looked harmless enough. In fact, if I put enough breath behind it, I thought I could probably blow him off his feet.

But he didn’t answer. He continued to look right through me, as though I wasn’t standing there, all six-feet-two inches of me. Other than stacks of boxes, rolled-up rugs tied with twine, and furniture shoved at odd angles, I was pretty hard to miss, even in the orange-tinted light seeping in from our huge window.

And then he came into the room. Walked right into my and Ernie’s new home.

“What are you doing?” I snapped. “Can I help you?” I moved a bit closer, thinking to block further entry. Should I call out for help?

It was as though he didn’t hear me. He continued his progress into the apartment unabated. I was too stunned to do anything but stand and watch, gnawing on a hangnail. He moved into the center of the room and did something really strange—he squatted and felt around on the bare floor, as though he was groping for something. He paused and then the rest of his actions were all pantomimed. To the best of my ability, I could discern what looked like someone taking a pipe in his hands, bringing it to his lips, firing up a bowl with—again—a non-existent lighter, and then blowing out an invisible cloud of smoke. He closed his eyes and whatever his imagination told him he was smoking must have been deeply satisfying. His eyes popped open once more, and he appeared all at once more alert.

It was then he seemed to notice me standing there. I’m sure I was slack jawed and, to be honest, starting to get a little bit scared. I wondered where I had left my cell phone. Would anyone hear me if I screamed? Over the roar of an el train?

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

ARC Review: Olive Juice by T.J. Klune


Blurb:
It begins with a message that David cannot ignore:

I want to see you.

He agrees, and on a cold winter’s night, David and Phillip will come together to sift through the wreckage of the memory of a life no longer lived.

David is burdened, carrying with him the heavy guilt of the past six years upon his shoulders.

Phillip offers redemption.



Jewel's rating:



This will be a completely spoiler free review. It'll also be short because I want to make sure it stays spoiler free. My advice would to be to stay away from spoilers of any kind before reading this book. The emotional impact will be so much greater and more meaningful if you just let the story unfold as you read it.

I didn't know much about Olive Juice before I read it. Just the blurb and TJ's blog post, so, you know - not a lot. I didn't know what to expect.

When I started reading, I could tell it would be heavy. That, even though it's fairly short, I would still feel all the feelings. How could I not? This is a story written by TJ Klune, we're talking about here.

So whatever my expectations and thoughts were as I started reading, the story still turned out different. And there were tears. I didn't ugly cry, but it was close (I'm a cold hearted bitch). I wanted to ugly cry though, I really did (I am also a touch stubborn).

ARC Review: Sparkwood by Daria Defore

From The Blurb:
Finn has never trusted faeries, so it's no surprise to him when his twin brother turns up dead, probably by magical means. What he doesn't expect is an invitation to the funeral—in the faery realm—and a chance to find out who killed him. 
Investigating Luke's death is probably the stupidest thing Finn has ever done, and soon he's up to his neck in faery trouble. In the midst of it all is Robin, the faery who's supposed to be watching out for him—but who just might have had something to do with Luke's death.




Karen's rating:




This is not a romance...

But it does have a touch of romance in it. 'Sparkwood' is more of a murder mystery/thriller with a very subtle romance developing in the background and I do mean subtle about halfway through this book I was questioning whether or not things couple possibly ever work out between the MCs. Their relationship seemed firmly ensconced in the love to hate category...as in they loved to hate each other but there was also a definite pull of attraction between them, so of course I had to keep reading because one...I needed to know who did it and two...I needed to find out if these two were going to get together or walk away when all was said and done.

There were a couple of definite issues between them one being that Finn is a closeted bisexual and the only person he's willing to admit this to is himself and he has no use for the fae...doesn't trust them.

Robin is fae and takes an instant dislike to Finn. He's come to Sparkwood to invite Finn to attend his twin brother's funeral in Sparkwood...the other Sparkwood...the fae version of Sparkwood.  The only thing that Finn wants more than to not go is to know what happened to his twin brother Luke.  Someone killed Luke and Finn means to make sure they pay for their crime.

What Finn doesn't realize is that things aren't what they seem to be and the rules in the Fae Sparkwood are very different making it so much easier for a mere mortal to find themselves in over their head. Suddenly what's suppose to be a few days for a funeral and a bit of subtle sleuthing turns into an extended stay with a member of the fae who's even more irritating than Robin. Leaving Finn with only one option of who to turn to for help.

Release Blitz and ARC Review: Back Piece by L.A. Witt




Please welcome L.A. Witt and 

Back Piece 

Skin Deep Inc. #1



Blurb:

Colin Spencer is a tattoo artist with a past he’d prefer to keep a secret. Actually, he has a few secrets that he’d rather people didn’t know about, which is why Colin doesn’t do commitment. But when a shy sailor approaches him at the gym, Colin finds this guy pushing all his buttons.

Growing up in a conservative family, then escaping with the Navy, Daniel Moore is an unsure virgin who feels like he can’t share his true self with anyone. Seeing Colin—and his tattoos—at the gym are the sign Daniel needs to finally get those tattoos he’s always wanted, and maybe try his hand at flirting.

As Colin and Daniel spend more time together, their awkward hesitations turn into a deep passion neither expected. But with both men harboring secrets, will their relationship be able to survive their insecurities and become something beautiful?

Back Piece by L.A. Witt is a sexy, emotional journey of two people learning to love and finding acceptance for who they really are.




Excerpt:



Outside, some of the guys from the gym were milling around in the parking lot, so Colin took Daniel around the back of the building where they’d have some privacy. There he stopped and faced him, fighting the urge to fidget nervously. “So, how’s the tattoo healing?”
“Good. Good.” Daniel shifted his weight. “It’s still kinda itchy, but it’s getting better.”
Colin grimaced sympathetically. “That’s the worst part. The pain I can deal with, but the itching sucks. You’re not scratching it, are you?”
“No, of course not.”
Their eyes met, and they both smiled, but quickly looked away. Awkwardness didn’t even have to set in—it was already present and accounted for.
After a moment, Colin raked a hand through his hair. “Look, things went really fast the other night, and I’m sorry. I mean, maybe—”
“No. No.” Daniel shook his head. “You didn’t do anything wrong. I just kind of freaked out.”
“But . . . why?” Colin struggled to hold his gaze. “Did I make you nervous?”
“No, you didn’t. But what we were doing . . . yeah. It did. Kinda.” He paused. “Okay, a lot.”
“So, how is that not me making you nervous?”
Color bloomed in Daniel’s cheeks, but blushing wasn’t as cute this time. He seemed genuinely uncomfortable and embarrassed, and Colin’s stomach turned with guilt over putting him in this position.
Daniel took a breath and met his gaze again. “The thing is, that was . . .” He scratched the back of his neck and added a barely audible, “My first time.”
“Your . . .” Colin blinked. “Are you serious?”
Daniel was bright red now, and nodded. “Yeah. I mean, I made out with a guy while I was on cruise, but otherwise . . .” He laughed uneasily. “I’m a virgin.”
Colin stared at him. “Really?”
“Wasn’t it obvious?”
“Not from the way you kissed, no.”
Daniel gave a soft, self-conscious laugh. “Beginner’s luck, I guess.”
“Something like that.”
Daniel moistened his lips. “So it wasn’t that I didn’t want to do anything the other night. I did. And it was . . .” He laughed again and looked at Colin. “It was amazing. I know I took off and all, but it was fucking . . .” He whistled, shaking his head.
Colin smiled. “Good. I was worried I’d maybe gone too fast. Pushed you too far.”
“No. It wasn’t your fault. I mean, I liked it. A lot. And I definitely want it. More. More of it. I just . . . I . . .” He pinched the bridge of his nose, pausing as if trying to collect his thoughts. “Okay, the reason I freaked out is afterward, I thought you’d want me to reciprocate. And I . . .” He dropped his hand and stared at the ground between them. “Man, I don’t have a fucking clue what I’m doing. I guess I was scared you’d be disappointed.”
“Disappointed?” Colin shook his head. “No, not at all.”
“Yeah.” Daniel laughed humorlessly. “That’s because I left before I had a chance to make an ass of myself.”
“My God. Did you think . . .” Colin cautiously stepped closer. “You wouldn’t have made an ass of yourself.”
Daniel said nothing.
Colin advanced again, and now he had to be well within Daniel’s comfort zone. He halted, giving Daniel a chance to pull back if he wasn’t comfortable, and when Daniel didn’t move, Colin reached for him. He paused, glancing around to make absolutely sure they were still alone out here, and then slid a hand around Daniel’s waist, his own skin prickling with goose bumps even before Daniel’s breath hitched. “So you’re afraid you won’t be good at it, right?”
Daniel nodded, still avoiding Colin’s eyes.
“Is that the only thing stopping you?”
“Definitely.” Daniel hesitated, but finally made eye contact. “Because I really, really wanted to keep going last time.”
Colin grinned. “Is that right?”
“Mmhmm.”
“Well, my house is just over there.” He nodded past Daniel. “Five minute walk, and my brother works nights, so we’ll have it to ourselves.” He lifted his eyebrows. “You want to?”

Daniel gulped. Then he whispered, “Yes, please.”



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Karen's review:





Back Piece is the first book in L.A. Witt’s latest series Skin Deep Inc. This is the story of two men, damaged and hiding from the world. Colin is a tattoo artist and the owner of Skin Deep Inc. His past has left him damaged in so many ways but he’s a fighter, and with determination and a solid support system he takes one day at a time and struggles to keep himself together. Commitment’s not on the table for him because he’s not ready to share his past with anyone else.

Daniel Moore is 26 and joined the Navy to get away from his ultra conservative and controlling parents. Daniel’s been hiding who he is and what he wants his whole life. Raised by parents who loved Daniel not for who he was but who they believed him to be, Daniel’s kept himself firmly ensconced in the closet, but one look at Collin when he sees him for the first time at the gym with his ripped body covered in tattoos gives Daniel the courage to finally start going after what he wants: Some tattoos of his own and a man to go with them.

I loved how the relationship between these two men developed. It wasn’t love at first sight, there was a definite attraction but neither of these men were looking for the ‘L’ word.

Release Blitz: Well-Tailored by Silvia Violet








Cover Design: LC Chase



Length: 62,000 words



Thorne and Dash Series



Professional Distance (Book #1) Amazon US | Amazon UK

Personal Entanglement (Book #2) Amazon US | Amazon UK
Perfect Alignment (Book #3) Amazon US | Amazon UK



Blurb


Marc longs for a grand romance, but he doubts he’ll ever be that lucky. Then he meets Darius, an arrogant tailor who pushes all his buttons. When Darius offers him a job, Marc hesitates—he needs a direction for the future, not another man who doesn’t believe in relationships.

Darius lives by a few unbreakable rules: never sleep with employees, fashion should be simple, and romance is for fools. Marc, with his shimmery-sweaters collection, makes him want to break every single one.

They quickly give in to desire, but Darius wants to protect himself and Marc refuses to repeat past mistakes. It’s only when they let go of assumptions, that love has a chance to take hold.

Well-Tailored is a companion novel to the Thorne and Dash series. It can be read as a standalone. 






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