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Sneak Peek: WORTH THE CHANCE by Ki Veeland

SNEAK PEEK into

WORTH THE CHANCE

BY BESTSELLING AUTHOR VI KEELAND

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A New Adult/Adult Contemporary Romance

Releasing February 17th, 2014

Meet Liv Michaels
It may have been seven years, but I’d know him anywhere. Sure, he’s grown, filled out in all the right places, but his captivating blue eyes and cocky grin are exactly the way I remember. Even though I’d much rather forget.

Liv Michaels is almost there. She’s smart, determined and weeks away from landing the job she’s dreamed about for years. Time healed old wounds, even her broken heart from the devastation of being crushed by her first love.

Meet Vince Stone
Women love a fighter, especially a good one. Lucky for me, I’m damn good. But there’s one woman that isn’t interested. Not again, anyway.

Vince ‘The Invincible’ Stone is every woman’s fantasy…strong, sexy, confident and completely in control. Growing up surrounded by chaos, he’s learned never to get too attached. Love will drag you down. He adores women, treats them well, puts their own needs before his own…for the night anyway. With the biggest fight of his life coming up, his focus should be on training.

When fate brings Vince & Liv back together again, there’s no denying the chemistry is still there. But can Vince erase the old scars their past left behind? Or will Liv hurt him instead?

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You might also like Worth the Fight, Book #1 (Each book a standalone)

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Continue reading Sneak Peek: WORTH THE CHANCE by Ki Veeland

Virtual Book Tour: BLITZING EMILY by Julie Brannagh (Review & Giveaway)

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Book Info:

Title: Blitzing Emily: A love and football novel

Author: Julie Brannagh

Release Date: January 7, 2014

*Avon is hosting a TOUR WIDE Rafflecopter Commenter Giveaway for THREE Digital Copies of BLITZING EMILY by Julie Brannagh.

 

Book Blurb:

All is fair in Love and Football…

Emily Hamilton doesn’t trust men. She’s much more comfortable playing the romantic lead on stage in front of a packed house than in her own life. So, when NFL star and irresistible ladies’ man Brandon McKenna acts as her personal white knight, she has no illusions he’ll stick around. However, a misunderstanding with the press throws them together in a fake engagement that yields unexpected (and breathtaking) benefits.

Every time Brandon calls her “Sugar,” Emily almost believes Brandon’s playing for keeps, not just to score. Can she let down her defenses and get her own Happily Ever After?

My Review:

As my first foray into Julie Brannagh’s writing, I’m happy that I can look forward to another talented author on the rise in the contemporary romance genre. Blitzing Emily was a joy to read. Even though I know next to nothing about football, I really enjoy reading about football players and their love stories, see Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ Chicago Star series.

Emily is married. To her career, that is. As an opera singer, yes, an opera singer, she has been working her butt off since she was young to achieve her goal of singing for the Metropolitan Opera in New York. She doesn’t have time for dating or for love, her last foray into the latter had left her in the dust of deep betrayal. She has lost her trust in most men and in relationships. But when a semi-serious fall on the ice lands her on the arms of Brandon McKenna, star player for the Seattle Sharks, everything in her life shifts.

Brandon McKenna is living a larger-than-life existence. He’s got the looks, the talent on the field, the money raking in from his career as a star player, and the love of all types of women. But a slight misunderstanding may cause him in the negotiations for the renewal of his contract with his team. But Emily Hamilton falling into his arms in the process of delivering a gift set of balloons and candies from a nut-case ex-girlfriend might just be what his life and his career need at the moment.

I really enjoy reading about fake engagements as a premise. I guess you can say it’s one of my favorite tropes in romance novels. And I really liked how the author has developed this set-up. I appreciated that while she did start from this familiar trope, she was still able to surprise me with how she weaved the rest of the story.

I also loved that there were so much of Brandon and Emily together, interacting, talking or word-sparring more like it. These offer the readers a much detailed look into the inner workings of their minds and hearts. I also love the reversals that Julie Brannagh did in the novel. This might be a bit SPOILERY so read on at your own risk. I love that it was Brandon who was not afraid of commitment, who believed in a lifetime love, who wanted to have a family, get married, and have kids while it was Emily who was, partially unconsciously shrinking away from committing whole-heartedly to a relationship. I love that Brandon is the one who wanted to talk, really talk and get to know Emily while Emily wanted a clinical way of getting to know each other for their shenanigan of an engagement. END OF SPOILERS.

I also liked how Emily’s character has evolved. Without revealing too much details let’s just say that she has been burned quite heavily in her previous relationships and her trust issues are issues as many as one can count TIME magazine’s. When the conflict arises in the latter part of the book, I wanted to scream at her too (her sister Amy did) and shake her. But then I realized that if I kind of understood where she was coming from. It might not make sense to everybody but it resonated for me. So I give the author props for presenting it that way.

Blitzing Emily is a love story but I find that more than finding that right person that fits you perfectly, it’s also about realizations that loving isn’t easy, trust is a good foundation of a relationship, and faith in the future you both can have drives because of the strength of your love and commitment are the things that will keep you together.

I can’t wait to read Julie Brannagh’s next novel. And what do you know, I already received an advance copy of that one featuring Emily’s younger sister, Amy. Off to read.

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5 stars; REALLY LIKED IT. You guys should go check this series out.

*I received an eARC from Avon via Edelweiss in return for an honest review.

Buy Links:

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About the Author:

Julie Brannagh has been writing since she was old enough to hold a pencil. She lives in a small town near Seattle, where she once served as a city council member and owned a yarn shop. She shares her home with a wonderful husband, two uncivilized Maine Coons and a rambunctious chocolate Lab.

Julie hasn’t quite achieved the goal of owning a pro football team, so she created a fictional one: The Seattle Sharks. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, or armchair-quarterbacking her favorite NFL team from the comfort of the family room couch. Julie is a Golden Heart finalist and the author of four contemporary sports romances.

Connect with Julie Brannagh:

Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter Goodreads

GIVEAWAYS!!!

Avon is hosting a TOUR WIDE Rafflecopter Commenter Giveaway for THREE Digital Copies of BLITZING EMILY by Julie Brannagh.

If Rafflecopter doesn’t appear, you can go HERE instead.

Follow the tour HERE and comment in as many participating blogs as you can. The more comments you have, the higher your chances of winning!

Tour Organizer:

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Tour organized by: Tasty Book Tours

Virtual Book Tour: LIVE: THE BURNSIDE SERIES by Mary Ann Rivers (Review & Giveaway)

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Book Info:

Title: Live: The Burnside Series

Author: Mary Ann Rivers

Publisher: Loveswept

Release Date: January 21, 2014

 
*Loveswept is hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for $25.00 E-Retailer Gift Card or Loveswept Tote.

 

Book Blurb:

Mary Ann Rivers kicks off a new contemporary romance series—sure to please readers of Ruthie Knox, Kristan Higgins, and Jill Shalvis—where love can be found unexpectedly.

If there’s an upside to unemployment, Destiny Burnside may have found it. Job searching at her local library in Lakefield, Ohio, gives her plenty of time to ogle the hottest man she has ever laid eyes on: the sexy wood-carver who’s restoring the building. But as the rejection letters pile up, Destiny finds an unexpected shoulder to cry on. With his rich Welsh accent, Hefin Thomas stirs Destiny so completely that, even though he’s leaving soon, she lets herself believe the memory of his scorching kisses will be enough.

Hefin can’t help but notice the slender, confident woman with ginger hair who returns each day, so hopeful and determined. So when the tears start to fall, his silence—penance for a failed marriage—finally cracks. Once he’s touched her, what Hefin wants is to take her back to Wales and hold her forever. But Destiny’s roots run too deep. What they both need is each other—to learn how to live and love again.

My Review:

Mary Ann Rivers does it again in her full-length novel debut. Get ready to be swept away by her story-telling. LIVE is as much about the love story of Destiny and Hefin as it is about these two people rediscovering the love for themselves.

Destiny Burnside, or Des, to family and friends, has been in an employment slump for months now since her father’s death and she constantly comes to the town library for job hunting. That’s where she “met” Hefin Thomas, “met” being the defining word as they have not been introduced at all and the extent of their interaction is when she ogles him at the library. He’s one of the highlights of Destiny’s day, even more so when it is currently filled with thoughts of her constant failure to land a job, of trying to help with the recovery of her sister who was in a motor accident, and of somehow trying to keep her family together, since that Burnside siblings lost their father. What she didn’t know was that the ogling went both ways.

Hefin Thomas is currently working on a restoration project for the library. He’s originally from England but moved to the States when he got married. Unfortunately, his marriage didn’t work out, leaving him divorced and his heart scarred. His aware of Destiny Burnside since the first time he saw her enter the library. But his little “crush” on Destiny can turn into a complication when one day he could not help himself when he saw her breakdown and cry. He didn’t have time for a long-term and serious relationship. Not when he decided he needed to get back to England in order to find what he seemed to have lost since his divorce.

From that first touch of Hefin’s hand on Destiny’s knee as he tried to comfort her in what she deemed a pretty embarrassing breakdown, in the library no less, I knew I was in it for the long haul. Because I wanted to see how they would change each other’s lives. And boy did they ever.

Hefin has found himself lost since his marriage collapsed and the painful part for him is that he blames himself for the failure. He has grown resentful of his ex-wife when they were still together not because she didn’t love him but because he somehow could not find himself as himself when they moved to the States. I love how Mary Ann Rivers presented this conflict with Hefin. You could see how it must have happened in the past and you understand the reasons behind it. And you also understand that Hefin somehow needs to open himself up to acceptance: acceptance of the fact that yes, he was at fault but then a marriage is not a relationship of one alone. And I love how Destiny stirs him towards that realization. Apart from his divorce, you just know that Hefin is finding himself lost somehow. Adrift. He plans to return to England where he hopes to reconnect with his past and be able to start anew towards his future.

In the outset, I initially thought that Hefin had the more complicated and heavier of the conflicts in the story. But if you’ve read Mary Ann Rivers before, you’ll know that her characters are multi-faceted, layered, and deep. And Destiny Burnside is no different. I was surprised to find myself realizing the conflicts and complications of Destiny’s life much the same time as Hefin starts to discover them. Because that’s also the time Hefin realizes that Destiny is the kind of person who likes to take care of people. And that caring personality meant that you don’t get to see what her worries or her problems are like because it doesn’t show. She doesn’t show it because that’s part of her nature.

The love story of these two was heartbreaking and heartwarming to read at the time. Heartbreaking because you know these two have set a sort of deadline for their time together, knowing that Hefin is scheduled to return to England. Heartwarming because you know neither time nor place would matter when you know change is bound to happen within yourself, with the way you see your world, with the way you love and live your life, and find your home.

There were so many good parts that I truly loved in this book, I must  have highlighted favorite passages dozens of times in almost every single chapter. I really appreciate Mary Ann Rivers’s style of writing. I particularly appreciate all the metaphors and the imagery that she presents to her readers. LIVE has a lot of those and you have to read the book in order to appreciate it better but a couple of my favorites are the Dome of twigs constructed on Destiny’s backyard, the talk about owning to your percentage for the failure of a relationship, and every reference that talks about finding your place in the world, that place you can call your home.

These two people’s journey in life and love would inspire you, make you ask questions about your own lives, about the importance of living, the healing power of love and acceptance. As much as I would like enumerate all the things I love about this book, because there are a lot, I feel I would be taking the experience from you. So I will just suggest that you go buy and read this book. You can never go wrong with a Mary Ann Rivers book. Destiny is the first of the Burnside siblings to get a story and I know we’re looking out for Sam Burnside’s book sometime in the immediate future. Mary Ann Rivers has created a wonderful groundwork for them and I can’t wait to read their stories as well.

Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5 stars

Buy Links:

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About the Author:

mary ann riversMary Ann Rivers was an English and music major and went on to earn her MFA in creative writing, publishing poetry in journals and leading creative-writing workshops for at-risk youth. While training for her day job as a nurse practitioner, she rediscovered romance on the bedside tables of her favorite patients. Now she writes smart and emotional contemporary romance, imagining stories featuring the heroes and heroines just ahead of her in the coffee line. Mary Ann Rivers lives in the Midwest with her handsome professor husband and their imaginative school-aged son.

Connect with Mary Ann Rivers:

Facebook | Twitter | Website

 

Giveaway!!!

Loveswept is hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for $25.00 E-Retailer Gift Card or Loveswept Tote.

If rafflecopter doesn’t appear, you can go HERE instead.

Follow the tour HERE and comment in as many participating blogs as you can. The more comments you have, the higher your chances of winning!

Tour Organizer:

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Tour organized by: Tasty Book Tours

Book Blitz: KNOWING JACK by Rachel Curtis (Excerpt & Giveaway)

* One (1) eBook Copy of KNOWING JACK up for grabs.

 

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Book Info:

Book Title: Knowing Jack

Author: Rachel Curtis

Release Date: January 17, 2014

Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance

Hosted by: Xpresso Book Tours

Book Description:

I am not a slut, although I’ve been called one often enough. Yeah, I spent three months screwing one of my college professors, but I was crazy about the guy. Then he broke up with me.I am not a bitch, although people like to say I am. I kept our relationship secret. I’m not responsible for telling the university administrators about it, but a lot of students still blame me for getting their favorite professor fired.

I am not a drama queen, although everyone thinks I am now. When I got a few nasty messages, I just deleted them. When I got the threat, I assumed it was someone being stupid. I still think that’s all it was. My parents worry, though, so they hired me a bodyguard. Now Jack follows me around, intimidating everyone who approaches me and looking obnoxiously hot.

This is what I am. I’m Chloe. I’m a twenty-year-old art history major. Kind of shy, although I pretend not to be. Stubborn enough to stay here for my senior year, even though everyone hates me.

And I’m stuck with Jack.

He calls me “Princess,” but I’m not a princess either.

Knowing Jack is a New Adult contemporary romance and includes adult content and language. The plot of the book is fully resolved at the end, but the last page includes a hanging teaser for the next book in the series.

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Some “Quote-astics”:

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Continue reading Book Blitz: KNOWING JACK by Rachel Curtis (Excerpt & Giveaway)

Virtual Book Tour: THE TWELFTH NIGHT WAGER by Regan Walker (Guest Post, Excerpt, & Giveaways)

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by regan walker

*Regan will be awarding a copy of three (3) of her books, Racing with the Wind, The Holly and the Thistle and The Shamrock and the Rose to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour.
 

Book Blurb:

On a dull day at White’s, the Redheaded Rake agreed to a wager: seduce and abandon the lovely Lady Leisterfield by Twelfth Night. After one taste of her virtue, he will stop at nothing less than complete possession.

Guest Post:

I’m so pleased that Girl meets Books is able to host a guest post from Regan Walker where she talks about the Wagering Culture in Regency London.

The Wagering Culture in Regency London

By Regan Walker

Gambling is, as they say, as old as the hills. As long as there have been people willing to take risk, and the money to back up a challenge, there have been wagers and gaming.

Regency England (1811-1820 when Prince George was Regent) was no different, except that the wealthy members of le bon ton had the leisure time and the money to indulge. Men of the upper classes had their richly appointed clubs like Brook’s and White’s where, in the course of social gathering, political discussions and networking, outlandish wagers were made and recorded in “the book” for all the members to see. Fortunes could be won or lost with a single wager. Historical Romance novels set in the Regency often reflect the demise of a peer brought on by his unrestrained gaming.

White’s, a gentlemen’s club in London, established in the 17th century from a regular meeting of wealthy men, is the setting of the first scene in my novella, The Twelfth Night Wager, when one October evening in 1818, two bored men of the aristocracy enter into a scandalous wager involving a virtuous young widow.

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White’s Club with its bow window

Historically, White’s played host to many ridiculous wagers. William Arden, 2nd Baron Alvanley once bet a friend £3,000 as to which of two raindrops would first reach the bottom of a pane of the bow window of White’s. Other bets dealt with sports, politics and social events, such as when a man might marry. No matter was too small or too great for the wager book. And some men piled up huge debts gaming and wagering. The politician Charles James Fox was famous for this. Lord Holland, Fox’s father once paid off almost £140,000 in gambling debts for his son.

In the Regency culture, gaming and wagers were glamorized in a society addicted to luxury. Gambling was entwined with the conspicuous consumption of the aristocracy, led by the Prince Regent himself. As Lawrence Stone said, “…wealth is not a sufficient source of honour in itself…it needs to be advertised.” What better way than an outlandish wager for some small matter? It was one way the aristocracy showed its detachment from the value of money. Still, there was honor among those who gambled. A gentleman might wager vast sums of money, which he might lose, but he must never lose his temper or his integrity—and he must pay his debts.

References:

A Study of Gamblers and Gaming Culture in London, 1780-1844 by Arthur Pitt

Gambling in Historic England by Ellen Micheletti

Continue reading Virtual Book Tour: THE TWELFTH NIGHT WAGER by Regan Walker (Guest Post, Excerpt, & Giveaways)

Release Event: HARD GLAMOUR by Maggie Marr (Author Interview, Excerpt, & Giveaways)

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* Prizes up for grabs:

(1) $ 25.00 USD Sephora Gift Car – International

(1) $ 25.00 USD iTunes Gift Card – International

(1) $ 25.00 USD Starbucks Gift Card – International 

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Book Info:

Book Title: Hard Glamour

Author: Maggie Marr

Release Date: January 14, 2014

Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance

Hosted by: AToMR Tours

Book Description:

A promise to keep…

Honoring her mother’s last wish, Lane Channing vows to follow her dreams. She takes the ‘big risk’ and leaves her small Kansas town behind and heads to LA, the city of dreams. She’s got a stellar job lined up, an old jeep, and 20 bucks to last her to her first paycheck. Her hopes shatter when she arrives to find her job’s been given to someone else.  Now she’s broke and will soon be living on the streets if she doesn’t do something fast. Welcome to cutthroat – Lane is most certainly not in Kansas anymore.

On the cusp of success…

Dillon MacAvoy has one goal–to become a star–whatever it takes. Even if it means honing his bad-boy can’t-be-tamed-and-forever-single image. Besides the image isn’t far from the truth. Dillon cares only about his younger brother and his career. He’s on the brink of superstardom if he can just decide on the next right script. But for that, he needs a script reader he can trust.

In a strange twist of fate…

Lane Channing is Dillon’s last chance. If Lane lasts the summer without becoming MacAvoy’s latest conquest, she’s guaranteed a job in entertainment. No problem, as long as she can ignore the heat that pulses through her every time Dillon is in the room. After all, love and commitment with a sweet, hometown girl would only ruin the Dillon MacAvoy brand.

Continue reading Release Event: HARD GLAMOUR by Maggie Marr (Author Interview, Excerpt, & Giveaways)

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.

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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.

 

 

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