2013: A Year in Review

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2013 has been a pretty special year to me in bookish terms. It was in September that I finally decided to write my own book blog and I can’t seem to stop expressing how awesome this experience has been for me. But even though I only started blogging in the last quarter of the year, the avid reader in me had been cataloging my books I’ve read since day 1 of 2013. This post is my year-in-review of the awesomeness that is this year.

 

Best Books I’ve Read in 2013

2 of my Ultimate Best!

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The Countess Conspiracy by Courtney Milan
Hostage to Pleasure by Nalini Singh

 

The best of the best are:

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Historical Romance
One Good Earl Deserves A Lover by Sarah MacLean
Any Duchess Will Do by Tessa Dare

 

12 heart of obsidian

Paranormal
Heart of Obsidian by Nalini Singh

 

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Steampunk
My Lady Quicksilver by Bec McMaster

 

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Contemporary Romance
The Chocolate Touch by Laura Florand
Love the One You’re With by Lauren Layne

 

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Young Adult
Eleanor & Park and Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
Divergent by Veronica Roth
Lola And The Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

 

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New Adult
Before Now by Cheryl McIntyre

 

Favorite Character Name

CRICKET BELL from Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins

 

Best Book Couples

SEBASTIAN & VIOLET from The Countess Conspiracy by Courtney Milan
DORIAN & ASHAYA from Hostage to Pleasure by Nalini Singh
CROSS & PIPPA from One Good Earl Deserves A Lover by Sarah MacLean

 

Best New-to-Me Authors

Laura Florand
Kate Meader
Mary Ann Rivers
Lauren Layne

 

My First Audiobook

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A Kiss for Midwinter by Courtney Milan, narrated by

 

Favorite Book Covers

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Hostage to Pleasure by Nalini Singh
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

 

Out-of-my-comfort-zone Books I’ve Read

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Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

 

New Auto-Buy Authors for Me

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Laura Florand
Kate Meader

 

Best Novella

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The Story Guy by Mary Ann Rivers

 

Best Book Boyfriend

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Dorian Christensen from Hostage to Pleasure by Nalini Singh

 

Favorite Series

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Psy-Changeling series by Nalini Singh

 

Things I’m Looking Forward To in 2014

1. Awesome Titles scheduled for release

2. More blog posts

3. Hosting more virtual Book Tours

4. Hosting my own Giveaway

5. Re-designing my blog

 

 

There you go, guys. It has been an awesome year. I wish you all A Happy New Year. Here’s to 2014! Cheers!! ^__^

 

 

 

 

 

Spotlight Tour: ‘Tis the Season (Multi-author/Book bundle – Excerpts)

Tis the Season Bundle Cover

Bundle Info:

 

 

Book Blurbs:

‘Tis the Season to Kiss Santa by Kate Hardy
With the help of a sprig of mistletoe and some snow angels, a recently single pastry chef teaches a highly successful and sexy Scrooge the true meaning of the holidays on a snowy Christmas Eve that quickly heats up.

‘Tis the Season to Get Lucky by Heidi Rice
When a Christmas Day blizzard strands an up-and-coming marketing manager and her boss’s very off-limits, very hot playboy son in his department store, the two toe the line between naughty and nice as they unwrap their holiday presents—and each other!

‘Tis the Season to be Kissed by Amy Andrews
A down-on-her-romantic-luck kindergarten teacher plans to drown her New Year’s Eve sorrows in a gallon of spiked eggnog, but the arrival of her best friend’s sexy brother threatens to melt the snow piling up outside the tiny Vermont cabin.

‘Tis the Season to be Tempted by Aimee Carson
After the worst year ever, a jilted music manager rings in the New Year alone, swearing off men forever. But things get complicated when her brother’s best friend, the perfect man with the perfect body, tempts her to break her vow—if only for one hot night!

 

 

Excerpts:

Excerpt – ‘Tis the Season to Kiss Santa

Excerpt – ‘Tis the Season to Get Lucky

Excerpt – ‘Tis the Season to be Kissed

Excerpt – ‘Tis the Season to be Tempted

 

 

About the Authors:

 

Kate Hardy

Author Picture - Kate HardyWebsite Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Kate Hardy is an award-winning author of over 50 books for Harlequin and is thrilled to be writing now for Indulgence. Her novel ‘Breakfast at Giovanni’s’ won the RNA Romance Prize in 2008 and she’s been shortlisted three more times for the award, as well as for two Romantic Times awards. She lives in Norwich in the east of England with her husband, two children, springer spaniel, and too many books to count. She’s a bit of a nerd who loves cinema, the theatre, ballroom dancing history and cooking (which is why she has to go to the gym five times a week!), and adores anything Italian. Reviewers say that her books are full of warmth, heart and charm – and also that you’ll learn something new and interesting from them! Kate also writes bestselling local history books under the name of Pamela Brooks.

 

Heidi Rice

Author Picture - Heidi RiceWebsite Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest

USA Today bestselling author Heidi Rice lives in London and is married with two teenage sons (which gives her rather too much of an insight into the male psyche). She also works as a film journalist but loves being a romance writer because it involves sitting down at her computer each day and getting swept up in a world of high emotions, sensual excitement, smart feisty women, sexy tortured men and glamorous locations where laundry doesn’t exist … Not bad, eh.

Then she gets to turn off her computer and do chores (usually involving laundry!)

 

Amy Andrews

Author Picture - Amy AndrewsWebsite | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Amy is an award-winning, best-selling Aussie author who has written thirty + contemporary romances in both the traditional and digital markets. She has written for Harlequin Mills & Boon, Entangled, Harper Collins and Momentum.

To date she’s sold over a million books and been translated into thirteen different languages including manga.

She loves her kids, her husband, her dogs, cowboys, men in tool belts, cowboys in tool belts and happily ever afters. Please, DO NOT mess with the HEA! Also good books, fab food, great wine and frequent travel – preferably all four together.

She lives on acreage on the outskirts of Brisbane with a gorgeous mountain view but secretly wishes it was the hillsides of Tuscany.

 

Aimee Carson

Author Picture - Aimee CarsonWebsite Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

The summer she turned eleven Aimee left the children’s section of the library, entered an aisle full of Harlequin Mills and Boon, and pulled out a book.  That story sparked a love affair that has followed her from her life in Florida to Alaska, Seattle, and finally South Dakota.

Armed with a fantastic job working part-time as a physician in the Alaskan Bush (imagine a combo of Northern Exposure and E.R., minus the beautiful mountains and George Clooney), she enjoys being home in the gorgeous Black Hills, riding her dirt bike with her three wonderful kids and beyond-patient husband.  But every morning she gets to play God and flirt vicariously through her characters, who all just happen to reside in one of her favorite vacation destinations . . . South Beach, Miami.

Her motto? Life is too short to do anything less than what you absolutely love.

 

 

Tour Organizer:

Tour Banner - Tis the Season Bundle

Tour organized  by: Buy the Book Tours

 

 

 

 

Book Blogger Hop (4): Books I’m looking forward to reading in 2014

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Book Blogger Hop is hosted @ Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. It’s a chance to follow other blogs, learn more bookish things, and add followers to your own blogs. It runs for a whole week starting on a Friday and ends on a Thursday.

This week’s question:

What books are you looking forward to reading in 2014?

 

This is so easy and yet so difficult at the same time: easy because I can totally list all the books I want to read and difficult because this would be a really, really long post if that happens. So to compromise, I just listed my top picks for this.

 

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The Shadow Throne - Jennifer Nielsen
The Chocolate Temptation - Laura Florand
Shield of Winter - Nalini Singh
It Felt Like A Kiss - Sarra Manning
Cruel Beauty - Rosamund Hodge
City of Heavenly Fire - Cassandra Clare
Forged by Desire - Bec McMaster
Isla and the Happily Ever After - Stephanie Perkins
Landline - Rainbow Rowell
Just One Night - Lauren Layne
To All The Boys I've Loved Before - Jenny Han
The Break-up Artist - Philip Siegel
The Mistress Rebellion - Courtney Milan

 

There you go. That’s a lot but for me that’s only the tip of my reading list iceberg. I’m excited about 2014 as there are lots of amazing books scheduled for release.

 

Happy Holidays everyone!

 

 

 

 

AToMR Tours presents Frenched by Melanie Harlow (Cover Reveal & Giveaway)

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Title: Frenched

Author: Melanie Harlow

Release Date: March 4, 2014

New Adult / Adult Sexy Contemporary Romance

Cover designed by Tom Barnes

 

 

*Melanie Harlow is giving away $25 USDE Gift Card to Amazon or Barnes and Noble. So check out the Rafflecopter link below and get a chance to win!

 

 

Book Summary

Mia Devine plans over-the-top weddings for a living. So when it comes to her own nuptials, she spares no expense—hand engraved invitations, Vera Wang gown, luxury honeymoon in France. And since her fiancé is Tucker Branch, playboy heir and notorious flirt, local media is obsessed with every little detail.

Which is why it really sucks when he jilts her a week before the wedding.

Mortified, Mia wants nothing more than to crawl under her newly monogrammed sheets and plan a funeral for her dignity, right after blabbing to the world how fitting it is that Tucker will inherit a bolt and screw company, because that’s all he wants to do—screw, and bolt. And he doesn’t do either with much finesse.

When her friends convince her that bitter tastes better when it’s drowned in Bordeaux, she grits her teeth and packs her bags, determined to make the best of a week in Paris alone.

She never planned on meeting Lucas Fournier.

The free-spirited musician’s scruffy good looks and less-than-sympathetic ear annoy her at first, but when she takes him up on his offer to show her around the city, she discovers that the romance of Paris isn’t just a myth.

Nor is the simultaneous O.

The last thing Mia needs is another doomed love affair, but since she only has a week, she figures she might as well enjoy La Vie en O with Lucas while she can. But each day—and night—with him is better than the last, and suddenly her heart is telling her this is more than a rebound fling.

Is it just the seduction of Paris…or could this be the real thing?

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About the Author

Melanie Harlow likes her martinis dry, her lipstick red, and her history with the naughty bits left in. She’s a 20th century fanatic and gets her kicks from historical fiction and TV series like Boardwalk Empire, Magic City, Deadwood, Mad Men, and Downtown Abbey (although she wishes it were more HBO and less PBS). Her debut novel, Speak Easy, was inspired by Detroit’s fascinating Prohibition-era history.

Blog | Facebook | Twitter

 

 

Giveaway!!!

Melanie Harlow is giving away $25 USDE Gift Card to Amazon or Barnes and Noble. So check out the Rafflecopter link below and get a chance to win!

*If the link above does not appear, you can CLICK HERE instead.

 

 

Cover Reveal Organized by:

AToMR Tours logo

 

 

 

Feature & Follow Friday (4): Holiday Book Haul

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An awesome idea to make friends in the blogosphere, Feature & Follow Friday is hosted by Parajunkee & Alison Can Read. It’s a great opportunity to find and follow new blogs. Every week, they feature bloggers on their sites and we get to learn more about them as they answer some questions. Each week also features a question that we can share our answers to.

 

Question of the Week: 

Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays! What books did Santa stuff your stocking with this holiday season? Do a holiday book haul for us! If you don’t celebrate just show off your books that you got this week. Pictures!!!

Well, I haven’t received any from Santa but I definitely got some book gifts from ME! ^_^ I also won an audiobook and an ebook and got freebie deals this Holiday season!

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I finally got my first ever package from The Book Depository.. Laura Florand’s The Chocolate Heart.

 

1465379_187025781501178_926229841_nI bought these on a shopping spree. ^_^

Searching for Someday by Jennifer Probst
Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor
Burn for Burn by Jenny Han
The Queen of Attolia, The King of Attolia, and The Conspiracy of Kings by Megan Whalen Turner
Bloodlines by Richelle Mead

I bought these ebooks from Amazon, Kobo, and Smashwords.

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Plus, I won an audiobook and an ebook from Courtney Milan!

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I have to say that it has been a wonderfully-booked Holidays! Happy Holidays everyone!

 

What about you guys? What are your book hauls this Holiday Season?

Don’t forget to check out the other blogs participating in this feature. Head over to Parajunkee and Alison Can Read.

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Or if you can, follow me via Twitter and like my Facebook page too.  🙂

 

Linky List

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday Quotables (4)

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Thursday Quotables is a weekly meme hosted at Bookshelf Fantasies. You choose a quote from your latest book read for the week. It can be a quote that made smile or laugh, had you crying, or just interesting in general.

 

This week, I quote from Kate Meader‘s Feel The Heat16076194

Like a sleepwalker, she shuffled back and shut the door. Through the spy hole, she watched him linger, his expression half swallowed by the shadow in the dimly lit hallway. She knew he was smiling because she was smiling, and if any kiss deserved a joyful reaction, it was that one.

It didn’t last. Well, it couldn’t, could it? Smile vanishing, she sank to the floor, her body a spineless mess, her stomach knotted so tight it hurt. The challenge had been thrown down; the choice was a minefield. She could get what she wanted and lose him, or give him what he wanted and lose her heart. Either way, it was going to be wonderful.

And then it was going to suck.

 

I love those last two lines the most. Reading the story, it is going to be both those things, I figure. *LOL*

I’m loving Kate Meader’s books. I can’t wait to read her upcoming books. She’s gearing up to be one of my favorite authors of Contemporary Romance.

What do you guys think about this quote?

 

 

Here’s the blurb from Goodreads if you’re interested in reading it (you should be ^_^):

IF YOU CAN’T STAND THE HEAT . . .

Photographer Lili DeLuca spends all her time managing her family’s Italian restaurant, instead of following her dream of getting an MFA. When famous British chef Jack Kilroy unexpectedly challenges her father to a cook-off, Lili decides she’s tired of playing it safe and vows to seduce the tempting Brit. But once a video of her and Jack kissing goes viral and her luscious butt starts trending on Twitter, Lili fears she’s cooked up a recipe for disaster . . .

. . . GET INTO THE BEDROOM

Jack Kilroy’s celebrity has left him feeling used and used up. While Lili’s oh-so-sexy moans when she tastes his delicious creations turn him on, he’s even more aroused by how unimpressed this beautiful, funny woman is with his fame. He knows they could be amazing together, if she could only see past his bitch fork-wielding fan base. Now as he’s about to start a new prime time TV cooking show, can Jack convince Lili to realize her own ambitions – and turn up the heat in his kitchen?

 

 

 

Throwback Thursday: Historical Romance Edition (9)

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Throwback Thursday: Historical Romance Edition is a meme hosted by Tin @ Love Saves the World and Mary @ Buried Under Romance where you get to feature historical romance novels published before October 3, 2008.

Visit Ki Pha @ Doing Some Reading and check out her pick for the week as well.

 

This week, I’m featuring Lisa Kleypas.

 

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It Happened One Autumn, published in 2005

From Goodreads:

It happened at the ball…

Where beautiful but bold Lillian Bowman quickly learned that her independent American ways weren’t entirely “the thing.” And the most disapproving of all was insufferable, snobbish, and impossible Marcus, Lord Westcliff, London’s most eligible aristocrat.

It happened in the garden…

When Marcus shockingly—and dangerously—swept her into his arms. Lillian was overcome with a consuming passion for a man she didn’t even like. Time stood still; it was as if no one else existed…thank goodness they weren’t caught very nearly in the act!

It happened one autumn…

Marcus was a man in charge of his own emotions, a bedrock of stability. But with Lillian, every touch was exquisite torture, every kiss an enticement for more. Yet how could he consider taking a woman so blatantly unsuitable…as his bride?

 

 

This is the second book in her Wallflowers series and I really, really enjoyed reading this book. Devil in Winter was my favorite in the series but this comes in as a close second. Lillian and Marcus have such strong personalities that it was so much fun watching them interact, in any way, be it antagonistically or through the friendship that they somehow form, and of course, the off-the-charts sexual chemistry and tension between them. I loved how they seem to be two very different people and yet reading their journey to their HEA, you get why they click and why they fit together.

 

Connect with Lisa Kleypas

Website | Facebook | Google+ | Tumbler | Twitter | Youtube 

 

Check out fellow TBT: HR edition participants for their picks for the week.

Renee @ Addicted to Romance

Jennifer @ Feminist Fairy Tale Reviews

Cerian @ Rookie Romance

 

 

 

 

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Wouldn’t Mind Santa Bringing Me

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the gals at The Broke and the Bookish. For this week, it’s the Top Ten Books I Wouldn’t Mind Santa Bringing Me. I’ve decided to simply wish for books that have already been published so Santa wouldn’t have a hard time looking for advance copies. Most of the books in my list are the ones that are not yet available in print in my country and although I can buy the e-book, I want hard copies of them.

 

Here’s a rundown of my Top Ten.

 

#10 Tail of the Devil by Danielle DeVor

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#9 Splintered by A.G. Howard

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#8 Cinder by Marissa Meyer

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#7 Legend by Marie Lu

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#6 Foreplay by Sophie Jordan

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#5 These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman, Meagan Spooner

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#4 This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales

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#3 Behind His Lens by R.S. Grey

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#2 Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay

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#1 Crash Into You by Katie McGarry

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There you go. What about you, guys? What are your picks for the week?

Book Blogger Hop (3)

book blogger hop

Book Blogger Hop is hosted @ Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. It’s a chance to follow other blogs, learn more bookish things, and add followers to your own blogs. It runs for a whole week starting on a Friday and ends on a Thursday.

This week’s question: What is your favorite book set around Christmas time?

My answer: A Kiss for Midwinter by Courtney Milan

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Here’s the blurb from Goodreads:

Miss Lydia Charingford is always cheerful, and never more so than at Christmas time. But no matter how hard she smiles, she can’t forget the youthful mistake that could have ruined her reputation. Even though the worst of her indiscretion was kept secret, one other person knows the truth of those dark days: the sarcastic Doctor Jonas Grantham. She wants nothing to do with him…or the butterflies that take flight in her stomach every time he looks her way.

Jonas Grantham has a secret, too: He’s been in love with Lydia for more than a year. This winter, he’s determined to conquer her dislike and win her for his own. It all starts with a wager and a kiss…

This novella packs a punch. A wonderful, intriguing, and utterly heart-wrenching punch. I recently won an unabridged audio copy of this book and it was amazing to listen to this story as well. It really doesn’t matter what medium you consume this work with, be it with an actual printed copy, an e-book, or an audio book, this great love story, because it is a great love story, will still clamp on your heart, twist it for good measure, and then give you the most heartwarming relief and joy. For me, it really is one of those rare perfect books I can’t believe were written with words that I know and yet only Courtney Milan can weave those words together and create such a compelling story.

 

 

Feature & Follow Friday (3): My recommendations in Historical Romance to a reluctant reader

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An awesome idea to make friends in the blogosphere, Feature & Follow Friday is hosted by Parajunkee & Alison Can Read. It’s a great opportunity to find and follow new blogs. Every week, they feature bloggers on their sites and we get to learn more about them as they answer some questions. Each week also features a question that we can share our answers to.

Question of the Week: 

Pick a book in your favorite genre that you’d recommend to a reluctant reader.

 

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My favorite genre is Historical Romance and one of the greatest and most unique authors in this genre is Courtney Milan. I would recommend these two books of hers. These are not sappy love stories. And they’re most definitely not your run-in-the-mill of this genre. They’re unique, plot-wise and Courtney Milan’s writing is superb. You have compelling characters, an unassuming but passionate romance, and spot-on dialogue.

You can start with a novella first, if you’r really reluctant to read historical romance. It’s short of course but Courtney Novella is one of those great writers that regardless of the length of her work, be it a novella or a full-length book, the story would still be full and complete.

 

What about you guys? What are your recommendations this week?

 

Don’t forget to check out the other blogs participating in this feature. Head over to Parajunkee and Alison Can Read.

 

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Or if you can, follow me via Twitter and like my Facebook page too.  🙂