Sunday, February 28, 2021

Blogtour: Heart and Haven series by Heloise West



Hitting Black Ice
Heart and Haven Book 1
by Heloise West
Genre: M/M Contemporary Romantic Suspense



Shawn is on the run from the law and love, to protect himself and anyone else involved. Until he meets Hunter, and he no longer wants to run.

ER physician’s assistant Hunter guards his heart carefully, but that doesn’t stop him from falling for the temp front desk clerk. He keeps his distance from relationships for a good reason but just can’t help himself when it comes to Shawn.

Forced into a hostage situation, buried passions explode in the aftermath, and sex in the supply closet brings both their hearts back to life. But as they explore their relationship, the past catches up with Shawn.

FBI agent Nick Truman has finally found his man, and when Shawn escapes, he focuses his attention on Hunter. Will Shawn sacrifice himself to save Hunter from the man who framed him for murder?


Excerpt:

Chapter One


Hunter had a crush, a big one.

In the cafeteria late one night on his break at the hospital, he sipped at a coffee and focused on Shawn, the night desk clerk for the ER, sitting a few tables over. With long black hair tied back neatly and eyes of faded denim blue, Shawn had a lean body, his face long and bony. Tonight, he wore a brown turtleneck under a white-and-green-striped button-down. The rolled sleeves revealed muscled forearms dusted with golden hair, as mismatched to the dyed black hair as his pale eyebrows and lashes. A silver skull ring and silver studs in his ears appeared at odds with the lanyard and dangling ID card.

Hunter drank more coffee, barely tasting it. He’d tried to talk himself out of it, but he couldn’t squirm away from the attraction. When he’d walked past the registration desk to the water cooler—again—or hung out there a moment too long with an empty clipboard in his hands, he caught those tiny flicks of interest in Shawn’s eyes. Hunter must have given away his interest because the nurses smirked at his pretended obliviousness.

He bent to the not-very-engrossing crossword in the newspaper, imagining what tattoo might lie beneath Shawn’s cool demeanor. Maybe gargoyle wings across a broad and muscled back, or a snake wrapped around his thigh. Something more esoteric—a phrase in Latin, like Hunter’s own primum non nocere, or a bit of wisdom in Chinese characters. Or an old-school Aerosmith tat? Hunter glanced up from filling in the little squares with black ink blocks. He could have sworn Shawn hurriedly dropped his attention down to the paperback in his hands. He turned the page and shot a second glance at Hunter. Gazes locked and jumped away.

Shit!

Heat rushed through Hunter all at once and climbed up to his face. Too aware of the black-haired man with biceps to die for and long legs to—well, never mind. Taking a boner back to the ER was not a good idea.

He had touched those biceps once when he gave Shawn a flu shot back in the fall. Shawn had taken the needle without a flinch.

Shawn stood with his tray in hand and walked toward the trash container behind Hunter. The back of his neck prickled as if Shawn breathed on the little hairs there. Hunter picked up his coffee cup once more but tasted only the dregs.

Good thing he’d decided to become a physician’s assistant and not an actor. He didn’t talk to Shawn unless he had to, the worst giveaway of all. No shy bones in his body, yet he feared conversation led to more conversation, to flirting, and the next thing he knew, they’d be going on a date, Hunter falling head over heels, and then the asshole—

Stop. You know how the story ends.

Behind him, Shawn cleared his throat. Hunter didn’t turn around. Shawn returned to his seat, picked up the paperback, and slumped down into the chair with a scowl.

Marisa slipped into the seat across the table from Hunter, and he smiled.

“I’m onto you,” she whispered.

“Uh-huh.” Hunter moved his body slightly so he could still see Shawn around her.

“You’ve been taking late lunch for three weeks now. I know why—or who.” She smiled, a small Hispanic woman with curly chestnut hair framing her heart-shaped face and hazel eyes. If Hunter weren’t himself, and she weren’t married, he thought he’d be with her. Her lips always gleamed with gloss, and her eyes snapped with fire when she got pissy. He loved it, most days, even when she aimed for him.

She leaned toward him. “Shawn, right?” Her eyes took on a warning snap now and dared him to contradict her.

“I don’t even know if he’s gay.” Which wasn’t true, but he knew better than to deny it to her face.

She sipped at her coffee with her gaze on him. Her mouth left lipstick smiles on the rim of the cup. “There’s something different about this one. And he’s lovely to look at.”

“Lovely.” Hunter snorted. Dead sexy Shawn. Hunter spied him out at the clubs twice now but avoided him there too. Shawn undulated like liquid fire across the dance floor.

“Talk to him, honey.”

“Please. Don’t.” He must have spoken louder than he meant to. Shawn glanced at them and away again.

“You’re letting Jerry’s death run your life.”

Hunter slapped the magazine down. “I’m too sober for this conversation.”

“It’s like he’s locked your heart away.”

Mindful of the potential audience, he lowered his voice. “You’re jumping way ahead here.”

She shook her head. “I know you. You have so much love to give, and I hate to see you suffer.”

Her probing questions about Hunter’s past, family, present situation were all familiar ground. Friendship he could manage; he recognized it when it was offered to him. He’d been out since he was nine. Always been out was what he told people. She was one of the few friends to whom he could confide nearly everything. Jerry’s addictions had killed him, but his family and friends blamed Hunter, and on a deeper emotional level, he blamed himself too. Marisa knew this, and it worried her. She wanted him to find love and move on, be part of a couple. She knew, but she didn’t understand.

He wasn’t abstinent now, not at twenty-five, and never got involved with anyone beyond one- and two-night stands. Hunter didn’t want to take responsibility for another heart.

When the tide of emotion and memory washed through him and left him able to speak again, he said, “I’m not suffering here.” He kept much of the darkness at bay with whiskey and anonymous sex. Who needed Prozac with a warm, muscled body in the bed?

“Stagnating,” Marisa said.

“Maintaining.” It had been a far prettier day in May, eight months ago now, when he walked out of the ER at Boston General to Jerry waiting for him in the parking lot with a gun.

“Ask him out on a date. An old-fashioned date where, at the end of the night, you kiss him good night.”

“No!”

“Don’t get angry.” She patted his hand.

He whipped it away. “Too late.”

Marisa sighed. “I’ll make it up to you. Toni, Anna, and I are going to Twisters tonight. I’ll buy you a drink.”

Hunter gathered up his tray. He liked the ER crowd. They always had fun when they got together in off-work hours, and he agreed to meet her at Twisters before hitting the clubs.

When his shift was over early in the morning, he drove back to his apartment and crawled into bed as the day glowed behind the blackout curtains. The end of the week had left him exhausted, and his sleep was blessedly dreamless.


* * * * *


In Twisters, dark-wood-and-burgundy-leather seats and bumpers, cushioned stools, and low light filtering through stained glass made the place comfortable. Three bartenders were already hustling, their tip jars filling. By the time Hunter greeted the women, one of the bartenders had poured his Maker’s Mark over ice and set it in place. A second drink joined the first soon after. His friends had already had a few rounds themselves. He made a note to keep an eye on Marisa, a lightweight when it came to alcohol consumption.

A nice bar to start the weekend, and he reveled in the fact he had two more weekends off before he had to take the next weekend rotation at the hospital. He sipped and scanned the crowd.

Pretty, brittle, blonde Toni broke into Hunter’s reverie. “Why aren’t you straight, damn it?”

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Bookblast: Ordinary Whore by Dieter Moitzi

Book Title: Ordinary Whore

Author: Dieter Moitzi

Publisher: Self-published

Cover Artist: Dieter Moitzi

Genre/s: Mystery, Romance

Trope/s: Family secrets, escort, healing, rebirth, finding a soulmate

Themes: High society, escort, finding oneself, false perceptions, finding the sense of life, resilience

Heat Rating:  0 - 1 flame       

Length: 87 222 words / 328 pages

It is a standalone book.

Add on Goodreads

 

Buy Links

Universal Link  |  Amazon US  |   Amazon UK  |   Kobo  

A story of loneliness, loss, treacherous perception, family secrets, and… rebirth.


People tell me I should count my blessings. “You’re handsome, Marc,” they say, “handsome, rich, young, and intelligent.” But then, given time and opportunity, people would always say inanities, I think.

Am I handsome? Honestly, I don’t know, but it seems so; handsome enough, at any rate, that I’m allowed to live comfortably off my looks. I’m not rich, mind you, but the men and women paying for my company fling enough crumbs of their wealth my way. I’m still fairly young, too, but since when is youth anyone’s personal achievement? Last but not least, I’m not sure about my intelligence. I’m not even sure being intelligent would be a blessing.

Anyway, I can’t complain—my life is not unpleasant. I’m a bit bored, a bit melancholic, my mood often as black as the clothes I wear all the time.

And now my father has died. It shouldn’t mean anything to me—for years we tried to have as few ties or dealings with each other as possible. But all of a sudden, everything comes crumbling down, and my life turns into an unwholesome mess…


Excerpt


—107—

He is just that guy. In his sixties, balding, short and slender; some would even say gaunt. His skin is white and papery. Thin lips, thin features, a jaded attitude. His eyes are… wait a second… grey? Yes, grey, I think, the shade of light-coloured steel, and his gaze is cold but not too cold. He is no man of extremes; a nondescript guy in fact who looks like an accountant or a small-town solicitor.

Someone of little interest or concern for me, more present in the media than in my thoughts.

And yet, by one of those strange, sly whims that destiny seems to love, that guy is my father.

Or rather, that guy was my father. Because he is dead now.




—106—

My older sister is the one who spills the beans. It’s half past nine in the evening. I’m sitting on my white sofa, turning the pages of a fashion magazine, my gaze empty like the faces of the models who are striking poses on the glossy pages before me. Gentle boredom seeps in through the half-open windows, glides over the walls, oozes from every piece of furniture, glistens on the glass or metal surfaces, forming a motionless, invisible, indolent space-time that surrounds me like a halo.

I’ve switched the television on but turned the volume down to a subdued whisper. The soft sounds of a TV game blend with the persistent hum of the traffic downstairs. From time to time, I lift my eyes from the magazine to look at the game host’s white-toothed smile, which seems as genuine as a handbag purchased from a street vendor in Italy. I don’t really follow the show; it is just a means to drown the mortal silence of my apartment. My other choices would have been to listen to the unutterable sadness of a Mahler symphony, or bear the silent cries of my immaculate walls.

That’s when the phone rings.

I pick it up and recognise Raphaëlle, my older sister. Apart from sounding breathless, she is the same as usual. Her vocabulary remains precise, her weary and cold inflections suggesting that we are not on earth to have fun but for other purposes, none of which very pleasant. That’s her in a nutshell: unfazed, unaffected, wintry. Imagine an emotionless automaton. Well, I’m speaking of so-called positive emotions, of course. She knows how to be curt and authoritarian. She knows how to throw an angry fit if needs be.

“Hi Marc. It’s Raphaëlle,” she says. Then, without further ado, she tells me the news. She is staying with our mother, because the old man died.

“Did he? When? And how?” I enquire.

“Let me think… Two days ago. Or was it three? I don’t know. You want me to ask Mother?”

Release Blitz: Cinderellis by Evie Drae

Cinderellis

by Evie Drae
(Once Upon a Vegas Night #2)
Publication date: February 25th 2021
Genres: Adult, Fairy Tales, LGBTQ+, Retelling, Romance


As the son of music industry royalty and a famous rock star in his own right, Henry “Cinder” Cinderford has spent his life on the road. Craving stability, he signs on to do a special limited engagement in Las Vegas and plans to spend the next six months discovering the meaning of home.

After losing his mom at a young age, Ellis Tremaine survived a childhood with an abusive stepfather who took out his anger on the son he never wanted. Nearly two decades later, Ellis continues to struggle against the emotional manipulations of his family, even in his career. But when he meets none other than the Prince of Pop himself, things start to change.

From attraction to friendship to something so much more, Ellis and Cinder become the celebrity ‘ship known as “Cinderellis.” But when reality threatens their storybook romance, all they can do is hope there really is a happily ever after for every once upon a time.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

Ellis leaned his elbows on the handrail of the narrow metal catwalk overlooking the frontstage area and closed his eyes, allowing the music below to encompass him from all sides. Surrounding his senses. Filling his soul.

About three-quarters of the way through Cinder’s set, there was a song that dripped with passion and heart, making exquisite use of his stunning vibrato. It had become a favorite of Ellis’s almost from the get-go, most especially because its simplicity allowed him a moment to breathe, to open himself, and to fall heart-first into the music.

The constantly moving parts of the high-concept production ground to a halt during those three minutes and forty-two seconds. The fly space he occupied went still and quiet as a single bloodred spotlight focused on center stage, highlighting a lone wooden stool and a microphone stand. Following his third wardrobe change of the night, clad in skintight black jeans and a white ribbed tank, Cinder stepped onto the stage clutching the neck of an acoustic guitar. As if on cue, the audience swooned into the orchestrated mood change.

They all knew what came next, and with a soft, collective gasp, the whole theater held its breath. Then, like the beat of a heart, as Cinder rested a hip on the stool, adjusted the strap of his guitar, and drew the microphone close, the crowd exhaled as one.

With the first note of the now familiar song, Ellis’s chest tightened. Music had always held an important place in his life, affecting him in ways he couldn’t explain. But nothing in his twenty-six years on this earth had ever latched on to his very being the way Cinder could with his haunting tenor as it trembled up an octave before plunging in both register and depth. Straight into his heart.

Friday, February 26, 2021

ARC Review: Forever Your Duke by Erica Ridley


From the blurb:


This year, the Duke of Nottingvale's Christmastide house party doubles as a bride hunt. The handsome duke seeks a blue-blooded debutante as respectable as he is, and his parlor is brimming with paragons of propriety.

Inveterate spinster and unapologetic hoyden Miss Cynthia Louise Finch does not fit the mold. Any mold. Her younger cousin is perfect for the duke! By matchmaking the two, Cynthia will save her favorite cousin from a horrific fate. The only problem? Cynthia has always held a tendre for the duke. And for the first time, she seems to have caught his attention...

The Duke of Nottingvale knows his responsibilities: Duty and decorum above all else. A respectable lord would never sneak away for stolen moments with a fearless, audacious minx he cannot make his duchess. He definitely wouldn't kiss her. Or fall in love…

Heather's rating:

 

 

Another enjoyable, if a bit far-fetched, romance in the 12 Dukes of Christmas series by Erica Ridley, Forever Your Duke was a positively pleasant read.

I always read Erica Ridley, and she rarely disappoints. Sure, it's rare for her books to really wow me, but they always make me smile.

Forever Your Duke was a bit of an opposites-attract romance with a 30-year old dare-devil spinster matched with a buttoned-up duke. I liked their dynamic, even though the relationship development was too speedy for my liking (a consistent issue with this author's books). I thought it was a bit of a stretch that he would ignore his mother and all that he's proclaimed to stand for in a just a few days time of being with Cynthia Louise, but I still thought it was very sweet.
 

Blogtour: Afloat by Isabelle Adler


Title: Afloat

Series: Staying Afloat, Book Three

Author: Isabelle Adler

Publisher: NineStar Press

Release Date: 02/15/2021

Heat Level: 3 - Some Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 70900

Genre: Science Fiction, LGBTQIA+, sci-fi, spaceships/pilots, action-adventure, 

space battles, abduction, aliens, alien ships, bisexual, demisexual, military

Add to Goodreads

Description

No place is safe anymore.

Matt and his crew know it all too well—and it’s especially true now as the war with the Alraki has reached the heart of Federation space and struck close to home. Suddenly, Matt is faced with a difficult choice. He has the opportunity to sway the tide of the war and rectify a past wrong by helping the Fleet obtain a groundbreaking Alraki technology. But to do so, he must risk his ship and the lives of his crewmates.

With Matt’s archenemy, the infamous Captain Rodgers, still on the loose and bent on revenge, the Alraki aren’t the only ones who pose a deadly threat to Matt and the people most dear to his heart. With danger and betrayal haunting their steps, Matt and Ryce must find a way to save their friends even as sinister secrets from the past threaten to tear them apart.

This time, the price of staying afloat might be higher than what Matt is willing to pay.

Afloat is the third book in Isabelle Adler’s exciting debut series, Staying Afloat, and concludes the series. For best enjoyment, we advise reading the books in order.

Excerpt

Afloat
Isabelle Adler © 2021
All Rights Reserved

“Can’t wait to get the hell out of here,” Matt muttered to himself.

A Federation space map slowly revolved on the large canopy screen, illuminating the darkened bridge with the light of distant stars. A red dot flashed sedately at the very edge of the map, marking their current location. The Elysium system was as remote as an inhabited corner of the galaxy could possibly be.

Unfortunately, as it turned out, “remote” didn’t always mean “out of harm’s way.”

Matt set the empty coffee mug on the edge of the console and leaned back, linking his hands behind his head as he considered the vastness of the galaxy, sprawled before him in all its unassuming majesty. At first glance, it appeared to hold endless possibilities, but as it turned out, they were unfortunately limited by constraints that had nothing to do with Matt’s dreams and preferences. Even the parts of the galaxy ostensibly under Federation control weren’t always safe for humans, and out of those, quite a large number of places weren’t safe for him personally.

“Permission to come on the bridge,” a voice chimed over the speaker. Matt smiled and spun around in his chair to greet Ryce as he walked in.

“So formal. Are you going to salute me next and call me ‘Captain’?”

Ryce grinned back at him and leaned down for a quick kiss before sitting beside him in the copilot seat.

“Now who’s being kinky? I thought adherence to a chain of command wasn’t your thing.”

“It’s not. But it’d still be nice to get some respect around here.”

“Knowing your crew, there’s not much chance of that,” Ryce remarked and cocked his head as he studied the map. “Have you been here all morning?”

“Pretty much. And where were you? I didn’t see you at breakfast.”

“I was playing chess with Val in the rec room.”

“Really? Two geniuses playing chess? Could you be any more cliché?”

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Audiobook Tour: Confessions of a Bookaholic by Joslyn Westbrook


 

 

Author: Joslyn Westbrook

Narrator: Sierra Kline; Tim Paige

Length: 6 hours 4 minutes

Publisher: Fifth Avenue Publications

Released: Dec. 7, 2020

Genre: Romance



What happens when a book blogger accidentally publishes her digital diary online? A viral shitstorm, that's what. 
No way did I want thousands of subscribers to read my confessions—yet, that's precisely what went down last night after four too many Cosmos with my girls. Now, Damage Control is my new middle name because my diary confessional has my roommate, Lucas Stone, written all over it. Literally. 
I've been in love with him forever—well, ever since I saw him sprint across campus naked during our first year of college. And now that Lucas knows how I feel about him? Well, things are destined to get awkward. 
Because Lucas Stone, my BFF—the man who sleeps only one room over—just got engaged. And his fiancée isn't me.

 

CONFESSIONS OF A BOOKAHOLIC is a steamy, friends-to-lovers, sports romance full of laughter and a tiny bit of angst.

 

 
Buy on Amazon

Buy on Audible

Buy on iTunes
 
 
Wife. Mom. Foodie. Fashion Junkie. Rom-Com Lover. Author of sexy rom-coms and feel-good contemporary romance, Joslyn Westbrook's novels feature sweep-you-off-your feet heroes and the sassy, classy, badassy heroines who can't seem to breathe without them. When she's not writing, Joslyn can be found watching Netflix, cooking, shopping, and spending time with her husband and children at home in sunny California.
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Independent Audiobook Award finalist Sierra Kline is a programmer by day, narrator by night. Sierra earned her degree in theater from Michigan State University, which she has been fortunate to put to heavy use both on the stage and in the booth. When she's not lending her voice to multiple genres, from romance to LitRPG, she prefers the great outdoors and loves running, traveling, and backpacking.
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Tim Paige is an audiobook narrator with a passion for rom coms, superheroes, and telling stories that provide an escape from the world (or a new lens with which to view it). A former full-time touring musician, Tim has played on some of the biggest stages in the world. He is the voice of "The More You Know" on NBC, and has provided voice-over for many national commercials, promos, trailers, and video games. When he's not narrating audiobooks or voicing fun projects, you'll most often find him playing pretend with his two sons, shouting at the television during Syracuse Orange basketball and football games, or cooking up tasty vegan treats.
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Q&A with Author Joslyn Westbrook
  1. Was a possible audiobook recording something you were conscious of while writing?
    1. Yes, I always try to imagine how things - dialogue - would translate in audiobooks while I am writing.
  2. Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?
    1. Yes, I LOVE audiobooks. In fact, when my favorite authors release a book, I often wait until it comes out on audio before I purchase it. I am a busy mom, wife, and author and sometimes the only way I can commit to “reading” a book is via audio.
  3. Is there a particular part of this story that you feel is more resonating in the audiobook performance than in the book format?
    1. I believe Sierra and Tim did a phenomenal job bringing all aspects of Macy and Lucas to life. Especially toward the end where both perfectly captured the emotions.
  4. If this title were being made into a TV series or movie, who would you cast to play the primary roles?
    1. So, yeah. It would be a dream if Confessions of a Bookaholic made its way to the big screen. Lili Reinhart would play Macy Sinclair and Nick Bateman (Canadian actor/model) would make a pretty HOT Lucas Stone — in fact all my books would cast him as the hero, LOL.
  5. What do you say to those who view listening to audiobooks as “cheating” or as inferior to “real reading”?
    1. Listening to a book on audio is much like watching your favorite book become a movie. I mean, don’t get me wrong: I too love getting lost in a book. At the same time, narrators bring life to your favorite characters—make them more real than they are in a book.
  6. How did you celebrate after finishing this novel?
    1. Wine. Then sleep. Lots of sleep. And I spend a few weeks with the family before I go back into the writing cave.
  7. What gets you out of a writing slump? What about a reading slump?
    1. Hmm. Good questions. When I’m in a writing slump I stream a show that may be similar to the book I’m writing or want to write. It puts me back in that mindspace. And if I ever find myself in a reader slump - whether it’s a book or audiobook slump - I re-read or listen to one of my favorite books.
  8. Have any of your characters ever appeared in your dreams?
    1. Oh, gosh. ALWAYS!! Especially when I’m writing the middle of their story. They don’t leave me alone until I write THE END. Just like anyone else in my life who may appear in my dreams every now and then, my characters do so as well. They are real to me, people who have a story that needs to be told.
  9. What's your favorite:
    1. Food - Pizza
    2. Song - Get Low (thanks to that movie The Proposal)
    3. Book - Wow! There are too many to name, but I loved the audiobook version of Tapping the Billionaire by Max Monroe
    4. Television show - The Bold Type
    5. Movie - The Proposal
    6. Band - This may tell my age, but I still love Metallica
    7. Sports team - Seattle Seahawks
    8. City - NYC
  10. What bits of advice would you give to aspiring authors?
    1. Keep writing and write the kinds of books you love to read.
  11. What’s next for you?
    1. FLING will release late spring with an audiobook to follow. It’s an off-limits best-friend’s-older-brother romance featuring a pro hockey player and a ballerina.
CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE FULL TOUR SCHEDULE!


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Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Blogtour: The Surprise Bollywood Baby by Tara Pammi



Please say hello to Tara Pammi with

The Surprise Bollywood Baby

Born Into Bollywood #2

a Harlequin Presents novel

Bollywood is in for a shock when these ex-lovers are bound together
by their baby in this emotional pregnancy romance by Tara Pammi.

Falling for a Bollywood superstar…

…leads to the shock of a lifetime!


For actress Zara Khan, a pretend romance with an old flame, director Virat Raawal, is the ideal story to feed the press—and halt her family’s attempts to marry her off. But after sparks reignite one scorching night, she has a very real pregnancy to go with their fake relationship…


Virat is determined to do the right thing and claim Zara as his wife. He offers her everything in the world…save for the heart that he’s locked firmly away. The trouble is, Zara will only wed for love!







Excerpt

She was up to something.

Zara Khan, actress extraordinaire and astute businesswoman, should be firmly embedded in his distant past but kept shimmering like an enticing beacon in his present. No, strike that. She was more like a niggling thorn lodged in his skin.

And damn it all to hell, but Virat Raawal felt every inch of him practically vibrating with an anticipation and excitement he hadn’t tasted in a long time. He ran a hand through his hair, cursing his tunnel focus on his current project for the last eighteen months.

From the moment he had stepped into the banquet hall and found her watching him with undisguised attention, Virat had known something was afoot. Tracking his every move from that wide-eyed gaze. Making his skin prickle with awareness.

She couldn’t have been more obvious if she’d thrown herself at him—all grace and curves and self-confidence oozing out of every inch of flawless skin she revealed.

No wonder his long-denied libido was now wagging its tail like an excited puppy at the sight of a much-coveted fancy treat.

Because that was what Zara was to him. A delicious treat that made him act like a man barely out of his teens, riding the roller coaster of horniness and emotional turbulence all over again.

Even after all these years. Even after he’d reminded himself countless times that she’d made her choice a long time ago. That she’d left no doubt as to whom she preferred, between the famous Vikram Raawal—the uncrowned king of Bollywood who’d slogged night and day for years, to save his family and the prestigious Raawal House of Cinema from dire straits—or him, Virat Raawal, the man whose questionable paternity was always a fan-favorite topic of conversation on the weekly chai-and-chat shows.

In the decade since she’d used him to climb up the ladder of success, Virat had built up a reputation both within the industry and with the critics—a reputation that his grandfather and cinema visionary Vijay Raawal had garnered more than half a century ago. A reputation and a body of work that had every artist in the industry salivating to work with him.

Even though they’d regularly butted heads on the direction of the family’s production house, Virat had always had Vikram’s support. The brothers’ bond had been borne out of their parents’ incapability to provide them with a modicum of emotional and mental stability in their lives. So Virat had actively worked on not letting the bitterness of Zara’s choice or her long-standing relationship with his brother rot the bond between himself and Vikram. And he’d succeeded for the most part.

While he’d never understood their relationship, he’d left it alone. And now, with his brother about to marry the lovely Naina and the resulting nasty rumors about Vikram breaking Zara’s heart, Virat had been thinking a lot more about their purported, decade-long relationship.

Tucking his hands into his trouser pockets, he absently nodded at some comment on his left when the subtle hint of Zara’s scent hit his nostrils. Virat stiffened, as if bracing himself against an oncoming attack. He didn’t have to turn and look at her to know that she had sidled up to him, closer than a woman he hardly ever talked to in ten years should have done.

Her bare arm rubbed up against his, the warmth of her curvaceous body a teasing caress. Virat scowled and was about to ask her what the hell she was up to when the roaming strobe light focused on them both and a cheer went up around the hall.

An announcement flashed on the huge screen propped at the top corner next to the stage just as a short, bespectacled woman announced his and Zara’s names together as the primary investors in the web mag, calling out giveaways including and not limited to scholarships for female junior college students, a featured monthly charity drive for innovative small businesses from around the country’s rural villages, and an opportunity for the chosen SuperWoman of the month to meet Zara and Virat. As their schedules allowed, of course.

“Shall we, darling?” Zara said then, loosely linking her arm through his, in that husky voice of hers that he could recognize in his sleep.

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Blogtour: His Secret Starlight Baby by Michelle Major


Please welcome Michelle Major with 

His Secret Starlight Baby

a Harlequin Special Edition novel


Welcome to Starlight


Book 1: The Best Intentions

Book 2: The Last Man She Expected

Book 3: His Last-Chance Christmas Family

Book 4: His Secret Starlight Baby


Becoming a father wasn’t part of his game plan in USA TODAY bestselling author Michelle Major’s latest book in her Welcome to Starlight miniseries!


Coparenting this baby is going to take teamwork


Former professional football player Jordan Schaeffer’s game plan was simple: retire from football and set up a quiet life in Starlight. But when Cory Hall arrives with their infant son, Jordan not only gets a surprise but has to devise a new life strategy.  

And Cory finds herself agreeing to be his fake fiancée until they work out a coparenting plan. Jordan may have rewritten the dating playbook…but will it be enough to bring this team together?



Excerpt

Cory needed a fresh start like she needed her next breath.

Jordan went back to locking the door, and if it weren’t for that initial rigidity and the tension currently radiating from him, Cory might have thought he hadn’t heard her greeting.

When he turned, she realized what a fool she’d been—nothing new there. Jordan’s pale green eyes blazed with an emotion she couldn’t name, although it definitely wasn’t friendly. Not that she expected a warm welcome back into his life, although she had to admit, in the two and a half days it had taken to drive halfway across the country, her mind had wandered down the path of silly fantasy more than once.

She fisted her hands, the sharp pain of nails stabbing into the flesh of her palm a much-needed reminder to stay grounded in reality. Cory was in Starlight to take care of business, not to indulge in ridiculous daydreams. Single moms didn’t have time for that sort of nonsense.

“How are you?” she asked, clearing her throat when the words came out on a croak. She tried for a smile. “It’s been a minute.”

“What are you doing here?” He pocketed the set of keys and rocked back on his heels. His eyes raked over her in a way that left her wishing she hadn’t forgotten her flat iron back in Michigan. Or had she deserted that particular styling tool when she’d taken off from Atlanta? She hadn’t given much thought to making herself look pretty in what felt like ages.

“I was…um…in the area, and I thought I’d stop in and say hi.” She gave a limp wave. “Hi.”

Jordan stared at her like she’d lost her mind.

“I didn’t know if you’d remember me.” She pushed away a stray lock of hair that blew into her face. “I’m sure you want to—”

Release Blitz: All That Is Solid Melts Into Air by C. Koehler

Title: All that is Solid Melts into Air

Series: The Lives of Remy and Michael, Book Two

Author: C. Koehler

Publisher: NineStar Press

Release Date: 02/22/2021

Heat Level: 3 - Some Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 107500

Genre: Contemporary, LGBTQIA+, Contemporary, romance, new adult, family-drama, gay, sports, college, rowing team, HIV positive

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Description

Remy thinks life after high school will be easier. He’ll go to California Pacific for a year while he gets a handle on his HIV, then after Michael graduates from high school, they’ll blast out of there for colleges—and life—on the East Coast. Then Remy visits Boston and everything changes. He realizes he likes CalPac. Turns out, Boston doesn’t have anything for him beyond one of the biggest regattas in North America.

Life grows more complicated when he gets home. He can’t find a way to tell Michael that he’s just blown their plan for their lives out of the water. Then Remy’s CalPac coaches drop a bomb on him. Those rowing officials who have been watching him? They are recruiters for the national team, and his coaches want him to try out. They’ll even let Lodestone coach him. Now he has to choose, school or crew, CalPac or Michael, and he still hasn’t told Michael he can’t transfer. Is there even a place for Michael in his life? Somehow they have to withstand training at the highest levels and having different goals. Will love hold them together…or tear them apart?

Excerpt

All that is Solid Melts into Air
C. Koehler © 2021
All Rights Reserved

Chapter One

So far, I’d made it halfway through the first semester of my freshman year at California Pacific, and you know? I had to admit that it didn’t suck. I know, I know, that was a bizarro thing to say about one’s choice of school, but there’s something you had to remember. CalPac was most assuredly not my choice of school. I made some very…I’ll call them colorful…choices the summer before my senior year of high school, and the gods of indiscriminate love rewarded me with HIV. It almost killed me—mostly because I neither told anyone but my brother and my boyfriend, nor did I seek medical care—but my parents made a decision I resented at the time: rather than sending me across the country to Boston University, as I wanted, they spoke to the men’s crew coach at CalPac. Between their persuasion and some fast talking from my high school coach, the ever-awesome Peter Lodestone, I wound up going to the local private university in the Sacramento area with a full-ride scholarship so long as I stayed brilliant in the boats. Mom and Dad’s idea was that I spend my first year in college at CalPac as I learned to quote, unquote manage my condition, and at the end of that we’d discuss transferring.

I flipped out when they dropped this bomb on me, and I dropped an R-bomb on them in return. R-bombs. That’s what Michael affectionately called my rages. They’re like daisy cutter cluster bombs but involved words and caused a lot more damage. All my plans—all our plans, as Michael and I had our future worked out—gone, just like that. But my parents knew me well, surprisingly enough, or at least knew my temper, and to take the sting out of it, they made a contract with me: in return for my cooperation, they gave me a notarized promise that at the end of my freshman year I could transfer to the school of my choice. Or maybe the school of my choice that chose me back might be a better way to phrase it. At the time I felt so sure of my future. Row my seat, keep my grades up at CalPac while I applied to BU, and bide my time while Michael finished high school. As soon as he graduated, I’d transfer so fast people behind me would get pneumonia from the wind in my wake. Michael and I would stay on the same schedule on the East Coast. That was the Plan. I’d worry about NCAA eligibility later.

Oh, and then there was my father’s edict that despite the fact they lived across the Yolo Causeway from CalPac, I would live in the dorms. That went over well.

“You’ve got to make the break, Remy,” my dad had said.

As I recall, I made a face. “Dad, no. I’ll be what, fifteen miles from home? How much of a break could I possibly make?”

Monday, February 22, 2021

Blogtour: Time Cures by Tag Gregory & Lily Marie


Title: Time Cures

Series: Time Adventures Series, #4

Author: Tag Gregory & Lily Marie

Publisher: Self-Published

Release Date: 2/14/21

Heat Level: 4 - Lots of Sex

Pairing: Male/Male

Length: 238

Genre: Romance, Time Travel, Adventure, LGBTQ

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Synopsis

Cocky American Ad Exec, Bradley Connors, and his courageous ex-RAF fighter pilot husband, Janes Garrett, are back in London and once again separated through the power of time.

With James stranded  in 1956 during a polio outbreak, a world of homophobia threatens to keep him from the man he loves. How will he talk himself out of the trouble he’s unwittingly creating? Who from his past can he rely on to help him get home to Bradley? 

Will they be able to save their friends from the deadly pandemic or will they too perish in the attempt? And can they do all this while reaffirming that nothing can tear their love apart, not even time itself? Time Cures is a love story like no other. It’s a romance through time.

Excerpt

“Considering the length of time he was unconscious, I feel it imperative that he remain in hospital for at least the next twenty-four hours for observation. Provided no other symptoms manifest, he can be released to his family at that time,” Dr. Donaldson advised.

James was relieved that the diagnosis wasn’t worse. He knew Bradley was still going to be angry at him for getting hurt. Again​. At least he ​would​ be angry - once Bradley got over being relieved - when James finally got around to calling him.

“Pardon me, Doctor,” the nurse interrupted before the doctor could make his grand exit. “But, before ya came in, the patient was showing signs of confusion and talkin’ all sorts a nonsense. I’m thinking he mighta banged his ‘ead a bit harder than he’s lettin’ on.”

“Confusion?” That got the good doctor’s attention.

“Yes, Doctor. He was spoutin’ some nonsense ‘bout needin’ to ring his ​husband, ​ an’ seemed to think he had a ​telephone​ in that kit bag of ‘is.” The nurse pointed to James’ messenger bag while giving the doctor a knowing look.

“Is that so . . .” The doctor turned back to his patient, one bushy eyebrow raised inquisitively, much more interested in the young blond man now than he had been initially. “Do you remember your name, son?”

Blogtour: The Duke Heist by Erica Ridley

 


The Duke Heist
The Wild Wynchesters Book 1
by Erica Ridley
Genre: Historical Romance


NYT bestselling author kicks off a new Regency series of "irresistible romance and a family of delightful scoundrels" as a woman looking to recover a stolen painting accidentally kidnaps a duke instead. (Eloisa James)

Chloe Wynchester is completely forgettable -- a curse that gives her the ability to blend into any crowd. When the only father she's ever known makes a dying wish for his adopted family of orphans to recover a missing painting, she's the first one her siblings turn to for stealing it back. No one expects that in doing so, she'll also abduct a handsome duke.

Lawrence Gosling, the Duke of Faircliffe, is tortured by his father's mistakes. To repair his estate's ruined reputation, he must wed a highborn heiress. Yet when he finds himself in a carriage being driven hell-for-leather down the cobblestone streets of London by a beautiful woman who refuses to heed his commands, he fears his heart is hers. But how can he sacrifice his family's legacy to follow true love?



Anyone who registers their purchase at https://ericaridley.com/preorder/ gets a FREE bonus book!




 

Excerpt:

Miss Wynchester swept into the Duke of Faircliffe’s dining room with her head high. 

Faircliffe’s throat went dry and his mind emptied of rational thought.

Gone was the insipid blandness of tan-on-tan. Her curves were now draped in a slip of mauve twill, overlaid with a sweeping frock of white netting. The dark velvet trim on the light rose bodice matched the velvet vandyke points decorating the skirt. The gauzy romantic colors brought out the dark brown of her hair and the deep brown of her long-lashed eyes. 

His body tightened. It was all he could do not to reach for her. Pull her against his chest, and claim her in ravenous kisses that weren’t his to take. 

A smile flitted at her lips, as if she sensed the maelstrom she’d unleashed within him.

His lungs tangled, making it hard to speak. Each syllable was the rasp of a drowning man. “You look magnificent.”

She stood much too far away for Faircliffe’s taste. That bodice would be displayed at its best pillowed against his chest, the perfect distance for a man to embark on a trail of kisses from her rosy lips, down the column of her throat, and into the swell of her bosom.

Tonight, he would dream of nothing else.

Miss Wynchester took a step toward the table. He watched, rapt. The swing of her hips was sensual and confident. She was a Wynchester. A woman of flesh and blood. Not being a highborn lady erased none of her power. The empty dining room crackled with it.

He leapt to his feet to help her into her chair.

She stopped her forward progress when she was less than an arm’s length from him. Close enough to touch. Close enough to see

Her eyes were the warmest shade of brown he had ever beheld. They were fathomless, penetrating. He wanted to see those eyes flutter closed in pleasure, and know that it was he who had brought her to that peak.

That.” Her voice was warm honey. “Whatever you’re thinking at this very moment. That is what you should be doing.”

He’d been thinking of her. Of devouring her kiss by kiss, lick by lick, until she was limp and sated in his arms. 

It was highly improper dinner party behavior.

His voice was hoarse. “I don’t think you understand what I…”

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