When I Need You (Need You #4) by Lorelei James-Review & Giveaway

When I Need You (Need You #4) by Lorelei James-Review & Giveaway

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WHEN I NEED YOU
Need You #4
by Lorelei James
Release Date: July 25, 2017
Genre: adult, contemporary, erotic,romance

When I Need You

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / Chapters Indigo /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date July 25, 2017

Rules are tossed aside when a pro football player join forces with a spitfire cheerleading coach in New York Times bestselling author Lorelei James’s brand-new romance…

Heir to Lund Enterprises and ladies’ man Jensen “The Rocket” Lund has three conditions when it comes to dating:
1) No single mothers
2) No cheerleaders
3) No medical personnel
So it makes no sense that he’s wildly attracted to Rowan Michaels, who breaks all three.

Rowan Michaels didn’t pass the rigorous requirements to become an athletic trainer and Vikings cheerleader in the hopes of landing a pro athlete: been there, done that, and she has a young son as proof that football players and fidelity don’t go hand in hand. When Rowan learns her new neighbor is Jensen Lund, the smoking-hot tight end who takes being neighborly to a whole new level, she’s grateful for the team’s strict “no fraternization” policy because the sexy man defines temptation.

But Jensen is intent on rushing straight to the goal line to prove to Rowan he’s much more than just a player…on and off the field.

••••••••

REVIEW: When I Need You begins with Jensen Lund’s chance encounter with a little boy running a little wild in the hallway of his apartment building. Unknown to Jensen, his best buddy, who lives across the hall, has sub-leased his apartment to his sister, Rowan. A couple of things come to mind: why didn’t Jensen know about said sister AND why didn’t he know about said sister being hot. Although their initial meeting was a bit awkward, it doesn’t take long for Jensen and Rowan to develop a friendship. And, friendship is all either of them have time for. Jensen has been rehabbing for the last year, hoping and praying that he will get medical clearance to return to his team, and has made this is sole focus. Rowan, being a single mother to her son, Calder, as well as a full time job (and a part time job as well!) has a full plate too.

What follows is a beautifully written story of friendship, acceptance and a truly believable love story. Jensen is a character with depth, who not only loves his family, but has a big heart that’s ready to settle down, even though he didn’t quite know that until his chance encounter with Rowan. Now, about Rowan. I LOVED everything about her. She is not a whiny, oh poor me, single mother. She is not so stand-offish that she comes across as a man hater. She DOES, however, put her son, and (SURPRISE!), herself before anything else. Yes, her son is her main focus, and she does lose her way a bit when it comes to letting her hair down, but when she finally figures out that it’s okay, she hits her stride. When these two finally trust in their feelings for each other, you feel that anything is possible. I also loved that their romance was slow to build. Yes, they were attracted to each other, but it took a bit for their true romance to build.

The secondary characters are well written and definitely leave you wanting more. The Lund family this series is written around is a triple threat: loving, forgiving and funny at times. Yes, they’re mega-wealthy, but if there is such a thing as being grounded billionaires, it would be the Lunds. I have loved everything I’ve ready by Lorelei James, and this series is no exception. If you’re a romance fan, you’ll love this series too. It pulls you in at the very beginning and leaves you wanting more. Well done, Lorelei James! Very, very well done!

Copy supplied by Netgalley

Reviewed by Vickie M.

Reading Order and previous reviews
What You Need
Just What I Needed
All You Need
When I Need You

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Vickie M.

giveaway

Lorelei James Publisher and The Reading Cafe are offering a paper copy of WHEN I NEED YOU to ONE (1) lucky commenter at The Reading Cafe.

1. If you have not previously registered at The Reading Cafe, please register by using the log-in at the top of the page (side bar) or by using one of the social log-ins.

NOTE: If you are having difficulty commenting after logging onto the site, please refresh the page (at the top of your computer).

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3. Please follow Lorelei James on Facebook.

4. LIKE us on FACEBOOK and then click GET NOTIFICATION under ‘liked’ for an additional entry.

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8. Giveaway is open to USA only

9. Giveaway runs from July 27 to 31, 2017

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Accidental Sire (Half-Moon Hollow #6) by Molly Harper-a review

ACCIDENTAL SIRE (Half-Moon Hollow #6) by Molly Harper-a review

Accidental Sire

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / Chapters Indigo /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date July 24, 2017

In Molly Harper’s newest paranormal romantic comedy, Ben, Gigi’s old boyfriend, must find a way to save his new love after a freak Ultimate Frisbee accident. But will she want to live after she finds out how Ben had to save her?

In this exciting addition to Molly Harper’s beloved Half-Moon Hollow series, the focus is on Gigi’s ex-boyfriend Ben. When his new girlfriend is killed in a freak Ultimate Frisbee accident, he’s determined to save her, no matter the cost, even if it means bringing her into the darkness of vampire life!

••••••••••

REVIEW: ACCIDENTAL SIRE is the sixth full-length installment in Molly Harper’s contemporary, adult HALF-MOON HOLLOW paranormal, romantic comedy series-a spin off from her Jane Jameson series. This is Ben Overby, and Meagan Keene’s story line. ACCIDENTAL SIRE can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty although I recommend reading the series in order for cohesion, backstory and the characters’ histories.

Told from first person point of view (Meagan Keene) ACCIDENTAL SIRE follows the unconventional human death and vampire re-birth of University of Kentucky co-eds Meagan Keene and Ben Overby. Following a freak Ultimate Frisbee accident Meagan lay on the verge of death and the only possibility of survival was through a vampire turning. But only twenty-four hours would pass, unlike the usual seventy-two, wherein our story line heroine would wake up a more powerful and hybrid version of the ‘normal’ vampire. What ensues is the accidental turning of Ben Overby, and the search for the person responsible for the new breed of vampire with above average abilities.

As new vampires, Ben and Meagan will fall under the guidance of Jane Jameson-Nightingale, leader of the local chapter of the World Council for the Equal Treatment of the Undead, and a powerful vampire in her own right. Locked down and treated like fledglings just out of the nest, Ben and Meaghan struggle within the confines of the vampire rules and newbie regulations. But someone wants Meaghan and Ben for nefarious purposes, and on more than one occasion our leading couple find themselves caught up in someone else’s plans.

There is a large ensemble cast of secondary and supporting characters including many of the previous story line couples, as well as a number of couples from the author’s Jane Jameson series. Meagan is introduced to a world of vampires, shifters and werewolves, as well as a plethora of information about her new life as a supernatural creature of the night.

ACCIDENTAL SIRE is a story of family and friendship, and the struggle for two young people to acclimate into the world of the supernatural. Molly Harper weaves humor, fun, romance and conflict into a paranormal story line where creating the ultimate vampire is akin to creating a more perfect human being. The premise is entertaining and enjoyable; the characters are colorful, energetic and sassy; the romance is sweet, sexy but mostly implied. Molly Harper’s ACCIDENTAL SIRE is a heartwarming story that will captivate your attention with its’ lighthearted look at the supernatural.

Copy supplied by the publisher through Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

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Fit For You by Cynthia Tennent – a Review

Fit For You by Cynthia Tennent – a Review

 

Fit For YouAmazon / B&N / Kobo / BAM / Book Depository

 

Description:
Small towns have the biggest hearts.
 
In the split-second it takes to injure her knee, Lily Shue’s life goes from rising star to small town reject. Forced to give up her role as a trainer on a hit reality fitness show, she takes a job in tiny Truhart, Michigan. By the time Lily arrives in the one horse town—on her crutches—she is well and truly fed up. And then a maniac nearly hits her with his garbage truck . . .
 
Edgar “Edge” Callaghan knows a little bit about broken bones—and broken dreams. A former skier and Olympic hopeful, Edge’s athletic career ended in injury, and took his love life with it, leaving him to bum around Truhart doing the occasional odd job, including driving his uncle’s teddy bear covered garbage truck. But something about the feisty new brunette in town tempts him to lace up his sneakers again. Even if it’s just to prove her wrong about him. And maybe to prove something to himself.
 
Lily and Edge may have started off on the wrong foot, but before long they realize they’re both moving in the same direction . . . toward each other.

 

 

Review:

Fit for You by Cynthia Tennent is the 4th book in her sweet romantic Truhart series.  Lily Shue is our heroine, and after injuring herself on a hit fitness show, she arrives on crutches to become the new fitness trainer in Truhart .  She is appalled to be picked up by a tall, bearded man in a truck that is filled with stuffed bears.  This is where meet our hero, Edge Callaghan, who is sweet  & easy going, as well as a jokester.  Lily’s first surprise is the apartment she was supposed to live in, was no longer available. Instead she was taken to live in Edge’s family’s house.  Everyone, including his mother, grandmother, sisters, etc all welcomed Lily.

The following morning, already in a bad mood, Lily is shocked when she is shown the gym she will be working in; it is an old grocery store, with no equipment.  To make matters worse, the other trainer, who was also hired  two different towns) on this grant, had a full gym with top notch equipment.  The town of Truhart did not have money or donors to buy any equipment; Lily had her work cut out for her.  She is big on all things healthy, including working out, and eating healthy food.  When she finds out that Edge, runs an ice cream place during the summer months, she becomes angry at him for always pushing his store, when she is trying to teach those in her class and in town to eat better. 

Edge we learn is a former Olympian Skier, who had too many concussions, forcing him to retire from the sport.  But despite this, Edge is happy and fun loving and loves his home town of Truhart. In a short time, Lily will begin to see Edge in another light, as he is caring, and everyone loves him.  A slow build romance will begin, but Lily feels there is no future, as once her job is over, she will be leaving town.  Other than the fitness competition between the two towns, she has nothing here in Truhart.  But Lily is determined to change people’s minds on eating healthier and losing weight.  She starts different programs to walk, exercise and offering different options to eat.  She starts making friends with the townsfolks and Edge’s family.   When the other trainer, pushes to remove Lily, the entire town of Truhart will come to her rescue and promise they will help her fight to win the competition

What follows is a fun storyline, with some really good and funny secondary characters, and a couple we slowly come to love.  Cynthia Tennent does a good job giving us a sweet romance, and more fun in Truhart.  If you enjoy a fun, humorous story in a small town, with a great couple, I suggest you read Fit For You.

Reviewed by Barb

Copy provided by Publisher

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Fly Away With Me (Blue Moon Harbor #1) by Susan Fox-Review, Interview & Giveaway

Fly Away with Me (Blue Moon Harbor #1) by Susan Fox-Review, Interview and Giveaway

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FLY WAY WITH ME
Blue Moon Harbor #1
by Susan Fox
Release Date:July 25, 2017
Genre: adult, contemporary, romance

Fly Away with Me

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / Chapters Indigo /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Dat July 25, 2017

Known for its rugged beauty and eccentric residents, tiny Blue Moon Harbor is big on love . . .

For busy lawyer Eden Blaine, a trip to a Pacific Northwest island she’s never even heard of is far from a vacation. Eden’s ailing mother has tasked her with finding her long-lost aunt, who once had ties to a commune on the island. Still reeling from a breakup with her longtime boyfriend, romance is the last thing Eden is looking for. But her gorgeous seaplane pilot has her wondering if a carefree rebound fling is exactly what she needs. . .

Aaron Gabriel has no illusions about happily ever after. His troubled childhood made sure of that. But he does appreciate a pretty woman’s company, and Eden is the exact combination of smart and sexy that turns him on. Still, as he helps her search for her missing aunt, the casual relationship he imagined quickly becomes something much more passionate–and much harder to give up. Can two people determined to ignore romance recognize that their heated connection is the kind of love destined to last?

••••••••••

REVIEW: Fly Away with Me begins with Eden Blaine embarking on a trip to try and find her mother’s long,-lost sister. Through a series of very unfortunate events, Eden’s mother has no idea if her sister is dead or alive. The only piece of information they have as to her whereabouts is the name of an island, Destiny, where the aunt headed to long years ago. Eden is bound and determined to find what happened to her aunt, even though she really has no idea where to start. Two things she does know: a little time away may do her some good and failure is not an option. Eden’s mother has been battling cancer, so, Eden being Eden, sets out to make everything okay.

Aaron Gabriel meets his passengers at the port where he will pick them up and fly them to various spots, including his home base of Destiny. Once he’s dropped off everyone except for Eden, he strikes up a conversation with her and offers his help in finding her aunt. The one thing Eden has to promise for his help? Have a little fun while she’s here.

As Eden and Aaron get to know each other a little, Eden immediately realizes that she will indeed need his help. Seems folks on the island have a little bit of a hard time warming up to outsiders. While they set out to question long-time residents of the island, they do start to have a little fun. Their attraction to each other grows and they both find themselves thinking things that they never thought they would. However, as the mystery deepens surrounding Eden’s aunt, neither know what is in store for their very near future.

Fly Away with Me is a nicely written story, and a first for me from author Susan Fox. I loved the character development of the main characters, as well as the eclectic secondary characters. This is not a story with an immediate HEA. They both have to work on themselves individually, as well as trying to be a couple and what comes with that. Fly Away with Me is ultimately a story that teaches you nothing is written in stone, and with hard work, you might carve out a whole lot of happiness for yourself. The first half was a bit slow, but the last half was worth the wait. This one touched me in ways that a romance hasn’t in a very long time. Like I said, this was my first story by Susan Fox, but it definitely won’t be my last. If you’re a romance fan that loves stories with a slow simmer and a real life storyline, you won’t go wrong with Fly Away with Me. Well done, Susan Fox!

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Vickie M

Interview-Blue

TRC:Hi Susan and welcome to The Reading Café.

Susan FoxSusan: Thank you so much for having me here!

TRC: Congratulations on the recent release of FLY AWAY WITH ME

Susan: Thanks again! I’m thrilled to be launching a new series (Blue Moon Harbor) set in my own part of the world.

TRC: We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Follow Susan: Facebook / Goodreads / Website / Pinterest / Amazon / BookBub

Susan: I’ve lived in Victoria and Vancouver, British Columbia, all my life, and I love the great outdoors as well as great restaurants and theatre. I have degrees in psychology and law, but rather than choose a sensible profession with a secure income, I drifted from job to job, looking for the right fit. I found it, with writing.

I’m fascinated by people, personality, character growth, relationships – and writing romance and women’s fiction is the perfect place to indulge that fascination. My world is a diverse, multicultural one, and that’s the kind of world I write about. I believe a writer has a responsibility, and so my stories always have messages, sometimes pretty blatant and sometimes more subtle. Equality and appreciation of differences are strong values for me. You’ll find some issues in my books, such as dealing with major illnesses or injuries (e.g., Eden’s mother’s cancer in Fly Away With Me) and dysfunctional families (such as Aaron’s), and so on. The stories aren’t heavy, dark ones, but they do involve some emotional stuff. As well as love and laughter, good friends, and some steamy sex. I love romance because the reader (and author!) always knows that no matter how much angst the characters go through, they will emerge stronger, and they’ll find love.

TRC: Who or what influenced your career in writing?

Susan: It took me forever to figure out that I didn’t just love reading fiction, I wanted to write it. That happened when a friend gave me Natalie Goldberg’s Writing Down the Bones. When I started to write my first book (which will never be published), I knew I’d found my passion.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties have you encountered writing and publishing your stories?

Susan: The biggest challenge was in getting my work published. I’m smart, organized and efficient, and I’m a good writer. And yet it took me 10 years to sell my first book. That was back in the days when self-publishing wasn’t an option. What I learned is that it’s easier to be a lawyer than to sell a book to a publisher. Becoming a lawyer is mostly within your own control: work hard and get good marks, work hard and finance your education, work hard and learn the law, hang out your shingle, and work hard to bring in clients then devote your best efforts to serving them well. But all the hard work and best efforts can’t make a publisher buy your work. I came close, so many times. When I did sell that first book to Kensington in 2005, it wasn’t that that particular book (Champagne Rules) was any better than the previous ones, it was a matter of luck and timing. I’d written a book that happened to fit with the new Aphrodisia line that Kensington planned to launch.

Trying to make decent money as an author is an ongoing challenge. I’ve written for Berkley and Harlequin as well as Kensington, and I’ve also done some self-publishing. Right now, Kensington is the best home for me. I’m certainly not getting rich, but I’m writing the kind of stories I want to write, with a supportive editor and publishing team.

Fly Away with MeTRC: Would you please tell us something about the premise of FLY AWAY WITH ME and the Blue Moon Harbor series?

Susan: The idea for the series setting came from my boating in the Gulf Islands near Victoria, British Columbia (something my partner and I do every summer). I love the ocean and the islands, which have a diverse and quirky population. So I’m writing about a small community setting, as with my Caribou Crossing books which are set in ranching country in B.C.’s interior. But an island has the added quality of only being accessible by water or air – it’s isolated and weather-dependent.

I created a fictional island and named it Destiny, because I thought that would lead to some interesting book titles. I named the village Blue Moon Harbor because who doesn’t love the romantic notion of a blue moon? My publisher, Kensington, decided to use Blue Moon Harbor as the series name.

I love seaplanes, and they’re an intrinsic part of island life, so making my first hero a seaplane pilot was a “well, duh!” kind of thing. To make for contrast and conflict, I thought Aaron needed an off-island heroine, and who could be more different from him than a big city lawyer? Eden’s not there on holiday, but on a mission for her ailing mom, to find her mother’s long-lost sister who ran away from home in 1969. A newly-discovered letter indicates she joined the island commune way back then.

Eden is responsible and driven. Aaron is easygoing (at least that’s the image he presents to the world) and he’s determined to teach Eden how to have fun.

Coming off a breakup, Eden’s not interested in a serious relationship, but a rebound fling sounds good to her. And Aaron, whose dysfunctional childhood made him cynical about finding love, only ever seeks casual relationships. So they’re on the same page – at least until their heartstrings start getting tugged!

But how could long-term be possible for them? She’s devoted to her family and career in Ottawa. He’s equally devoted to his career on Destiny, and to his single-parent younger sister and her little girl.

All the same, when you find your love on Destiny, life will never be the same!

I had originally titled the book Destiny Calls, but my publisher wasn’t keen on using “destiny” because they thought it might have religious connotations for some people. Fly Away With Me was my agent’s suggestion. It’s perfect, because of course Aaron flies away with Eden’s heart.

TRC: What kind of research/plotting do you do, and how long do you spend researching /plotting before beginning a book?

Susan: I’m not a big plotter, but I do need to feel fairly confident that I have enough of a story to make a 100,000 word book. I don’t need to know many plot details, but I need to know that I have characters who can carry a romance story. They need to be interesting, complex, relatable, and they need to have issues.

I don’t tend to do a lot of research ahead of time, just enough to get me into the story. For Fly Away With Me, for example, I already knew the setting because I’ve visited the Gulf Islands all my life, and as I said earlier, I go boating there a lot. (We have a 1960s vintage old wooden boat, a 36’ Shepherd.) I did do a bit of historical and factual research on the islands, to draw on in creating my fictional Destiny Island. I wanted to use a fictional island rather than a real one so I’d have more creative freedom.

The hero Aaron is a seaplane pilot. I’ve flown in seaplanes – and even flown one – so I didn’t have to do initial research on that. I did some as I was writing, to fine-tune the details. Eden’s a lawyer with a foundation that funds charities, and I had a pretty good idea of her job. But with some books, if I don’t know much about the heroine’s or hero’s occupations, I may need to do up-front research.

Or if a heroine or hero has an illness or injury (e.g., my hero’s leg amputation and PTSD in Ring of Fire), I’ll need to research that in order to get a clear idea of the issues that character deals with on a practical and emotional level. Those things are key to the character’s personality – and personality is key to how the story will develop.

So, basically, I do enough research up front to understand my setting and my two main characters, and then I let the story develop as I write, and do additional research as needed. I’ll often skip some of the nitpicky details while I’m writing and then fill them in later.

TRC: How did publishing your first book change your writing process?

Susan: It made me write faster and be more focused. I no longer had the luxury of messing around with a manuscript for as long as I wanted. I also felt the pressure to make each book the absolute best I could, because real people would be reading it. But I’m a disciplined, organized person, so it wasn’t too much of a stretch. And I was so thrilled to finally have publishing contracts and to know that my characters and stories would be reaching readers, I was happy to put in the extra hours and effort.

TRC: What was your hardest scene –ever-to write?

Susan: The hardest were probably a couple of sex scenes in Bound to be Dirty, one of my Dirty Girls Book Club erotic romances for Berkley Heat. The premise of the series was that each time the book club read a “dirty book,” one of the members would have a sexy romance that in some ways paralleled that story. In Bound to be Dirty (which came out after Fifty Shades of Grey), the club decided they had to read a BDSM book, since everyone else was doing it. Book club member Lily (a family practice doctor) was married to Dax (a helicopter bush pilot), their marriage was in serious trouble, and they started trying out some very mild BDSM stuff. It was more about exploring their relationship and developing communication, trust, and intimacy than about actual BDSM sex, but I did have to figure out how to write all aspects of the sex scenes.

And there lay my problem, because I personally can’t relate to BDSM. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with it, for two equal partners who both want it and consent and have a safe word, but for me the concept of one person being dominant and the other submissive makes me squirmy – and not in a nice way! But it was good for me to have to push myself – and of course the story wasn’t about me, it was about Lily and Dax and how they felt about themselves and each other. I also had an interesting time with the book club as they discussed the novel they were reading. Four young, intelligent, self-sufficient women, sharing their viewpoints!

TRC: There is a fine line between romance, erotic, and erotica in many of today’s popular contemporary fiction. Many authors are re-issuing their previously erotic story lines with ‘cleaner’ versions without the use of over the top, sexually graphic language and text. What do you believe has precipitated this move or change in direction?

Susan: The publishing world goes through phases. My first book (Champagne Rules) came out in February 2006, and all the traditional publishers were jumping on the erotic romance bandwagon, after seeing how successful e-publishers had been with those books. My Awesome Foursome series with Kensington Aphrodisia and my destination wedding series with Berkley Heat were branded as erotic romance. They were spicier than the books I’m writing now, but not hot or kinky enough for a lot of erotic romance readers, so they didn’t do terribly well.

The next trend was for many contemporary romances to become steamier, and at that point many of the erotic romance lines faded away. But then came Fifty Shades of Grey and the world “discovered” erotic romance. LOL. That seemed ridiculous to the authors who’d already been writing erotic romance for many years, but what that one book did was break through to the truly mainstream audience. It also spearheaded another surge in the popularity of erotic romance – especially the kind that featured BDSM.

But now that trend seems to have faded again, and we’re back to just having a nice range of romance. Everything from super-hot and kinky through to barely even a hint of sexual tension. It’s terrific that readers can find just the level of heat that works for them.

Why are authors turning their previously issued erotic stories into cleaner ones for reissue? For many, I’d guess that they figured those books had their opportunity to reach erotic romance readers. Now the authors have their rights back and are self-publishing the books, and they hope to reach a different audience.

Also, authors get tired of writing the same thing. Writing hot sex that’s believable, original, and steamy is really difficult. And you can, if you’ll pardon the pun, burn out on it. So if an author who once wrote erotic romance has turned to writing less erotic, as I have, then she may want all her current releases to appeal to her current readers rather than shocking or disgusting them with too much or too explicit or too kinky sex.

It’ll be interesting to see how some of those reissues work. With erotic romance, I always figured the premise of the story needed to be a sexy one. You had to find some reason for the characters to have sex early in the story. And then you needed not just a lot of sexual tension but also a fair number of sex scenes, because that’s something the readers were looking for. So, how do you take a book that’s as “erotic” as it is “romantic,” and take out the eroticism? Seems to me it would be like trying to take the suspense out of a romantic suspense novel, or taking the religious aspect out of an inspirational romance. But if authors can do it, and readers enjoy the result, then more power to all of them!

TRC: Do you believe the cover image plays a deciding factor for many readers in the process of selecting a book or new series to read?

Susan: It sure does for me, and I know I’m not the only one. The cover conveys so much about the book. For example, I usually won’t choose a book with a “hot, semi-naked guy” cover, because to me that suggests the book’s going to be more about the sexuality of the relationship than the emotionality. Nothing against sex – I write explicit sex scenes myself – but I want the emotions to be the most important part of the book. If I’ve read a blurb or review that really appeals to me, I won’t let the cover put me off getting the book, but if I’m just scanning a page full of covers, I pretty quickly narrow my focus to the books I’m most likely to be interested in.

Kensington asked me for cover ideas for Fly Away With Me and I said I wanted to convey the setting, and the fact that the story is a romance. I thought the seaplane aspect of the book was interesting, so suggested a couple on a dock with a seaplane. Kensington did a cover shoot and gave me everything I asked for! My only complaint is that the male model isn’t as rugged and masculine as Aaron.

TRC: When writing a story line, do the characters direct the writing or do you direct the characters?

Susan: A bit of both. It’s a joint effort, and we kind of trade off. In the beginning, I put a fair bit of thought into figuring out who they are. My goal is to create characters who are so multi-dimensional and genuine that they can then more or less take over and I just transcribe as they direct me. But usually I’ll stall at one or more points as I’m writing, which basically means they’ve stopped telling me what to type. Then I have to step away from the keyboard and do some more reflecting. I need to talk to the characters in my head, do more analysis, get to know them even better. And then they pretty much decide what they’re going to do next, and I get back to taking direction from them.

TRC: How do you select the names of your characters?

Susan: In all sorts of ways. Sometimes names just pop into my mind or I see interesting names in TV credits or magazines. I have lists of names that interest me and I review them when I’m naming new characters. I’ll check popular baby names for the year the character was born. Ethnic background is a factor. I’ve also asked for suggestions on my Facebook page.
Here’s how I came up with the names in Fly Away With Me. Eden: A friend gave her baby that name, and I loved it. Blaine: I wanted a simple surname, one syllable after the two-syllable first name, something that sounded good with Eden, so I just hunted through names until one felt right. Aaron: He was originally Adam, a name I like and have never used for a hero, but someone pointed out that Adam and Eden was too Biblical – something I’d never actually realized myself, even though it seems obvious – so I looked for something similar and hit on Aaron. Gabriel: It’s a name I just love, one I’ve used as a hero’s first name (in Finding Isadora), so I indulged and let myself use it again, this time as a surname. I also loved naming Di and Seal SkySong, but if I told you any more about that, it would be a spoiler!

TRC: The mark of a good writer is to pull the reader into the story line so that they experience the emotions along with the characters. What do you believe a writer must do to make this happen? Where do you believe writers fail in this endeavor?

Susan: I totally agree with you. For me, reading is all about the emotions. That’s why I write stories that are character-driven more than plot-driven. I think the key, for the author, is to “go deep.” Deep into who the character is, how her (or his) life up to now has shaped her, what she hopes for and fears, what she cares about and values, all of that stuff. Who she is when the story starts, and how she reacts emotionally to everything that happens during the story. How she makes decisions (e.g., mostly with her heart or with her mind?) and how she evaluates those decisions. And so on, and so on. I have a psychology degree and I’m fascinated by everything that goes into making us who we are and shaping our behavior and emotions. So, for me, I spend a lot of time getting to know my characters and then I try to put myself into their shoes. I talk to them in my head, like I’m having a conversation with someone I care about, whom I want to know even better.

As for other writers, well, I hate to judge. And reading is so subjective. Different things appeal to each of us. But if a reader is looking to be pulled into the emotional journey and finds that isn’t happening, then maybe the author didn’t actually want it to happen. Maybe the author wanted a story that was more plot-driven – perhaps thrilling or humorous – so that the reader cares more about events and actions than emotions. I find that some mysteries and police procedurals are like this.

In other cases, I think authors just don’t take the time to “sit with” their characters and stories for very long. They may be driven to turn out X number of books per year, and while some authors are capable of producing brilliant and emotional stories in a short time-frame, others just aren’t.

Or, of course, some authors simply don’t want to “go deep” on some emotional issues. For example, it was hard for me to write about Eden’s mom’s cancer, because my mother had cancer too. Ovarian cancer, in her case, and she did survive. But it was of course very hard on her, and on my stepdad and me. I used lessons from that time in writing Fly Away With Me, and I shed some tears. If an issue hits particularly close to home, an author just may not want to “go there” on a deep emotional level. And so they don’t take the reader there.

TRC: Do you listen to music while writing? If so, does the style of music influence the story line direction? Characters?

Susan: I don’t listen when I’m actually writing. I find music too distracting. But occasionally, if a certain song is relevant to a story I’m working on, I’ll listen to it before I start writing, or during a writing break. With the Caribou Crossing Romances, I listened to a lot of country music and developed a real appreciation for it. It was fun finding songs to match the stories, and then seeing that those songs influenced the direction of the story.

For the book I’m writing now (Sail Away With Me), one of the songs I’ve listened to is Ricky Nelson’s “I Will Follow You.” My heroine’s grandmother said it was the story of her romance with her hubby – and let’s just say, the song plays a role in my heroine’s love story, too!

TRC: What do you believe is the biggest misconception people have about authors?

Susan: That we’re rich! Or that we write just because we love it, not as an actual job. They therefore think it’s okay to download free books that have been pirated (i.e., stolen) from us. I don’t expect my doctor or car mechanic or hairdresser to work for free, so why should some readers think they shouldn’t have to pay for books? For most authors, if we can’t earn an income from our writing, then we have to do it from some other job – which means we have less, or even no, writing time. Which means fewer books out there for readers.

TRC: What is something that few, if anybody, knows about you?

Susan: My parents split up when I was in my early teens and didn’t tell me. Supposedly, my father was away on a business trip. How did I find out? When someone phoned for him, I said he was out of town, and they said they’d seen him in town the previous day. This was at Christmas. Let’s just say, it wasn’t the happiest Christmas of my life. Within a few months, they were divorced.

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Susan: I’m continuing the Blue Moon Harbor series. The next story is “Blue Moon Harbor Christmas” in Winter Wishes, a holiday anthology (October 2017) that also contains novellas by Fern Michaels, Jules Bennett, and Leah Marie Brown. Then Come Home With Me will be out in late December, and Sail Away With Me in the fall of 2018. I’m just finishing the manuscript of Sail Away with Me now. And pitching another book in the series: Come Dance With Me.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Susan: I’d love to hear readers’ thoughts on my new series, my writing process, and my new release. I’m also happy to answer any questions.

I hope readers will visit my Website (where they can subscribe to my newsletter, find all sorts of info about all my books, and get in touch with me) and my Facebook page. I’m also on Amazon , Pinterest, Goodreads and BookBub.

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food: Depends totally on my mood.

Favorite Dessert: The Grand Marnier soufflé I was served at a French restaurant on the island of St. Martin. Other than that, I’d go with a rich dark chocolate cupcake with almond icing.

Favorite TV Show: Heartland. It’s a Canadian production, set on the prairies, about family, relationships, and horses.

Last Movie You Saw: Dirty Dancing. I watched the TV version and was so disappointed, I had to go back and watch the original Patrick Swayze, Jennifer Grey original. Which I just happen to own.

Dark or Milk Chocolate: Dark. Only ever dark.

Secret Celebrity Crush: Richard Gere, at any age. Love, love, love his eyes and expressive face.

Last Vacation Destination: That’s actually a tough question! Boating in the Gulf Islands – does that count? Last winter’s motor home trip to southern California. Or, if you mean an actual real big trip, then St. Martin, a few years ago.

Do you have any pets?: No. Our lifestyle doesn’t really allow for it. I just enjoy the wildlife around me.

Last book you read: Sycamore by Bryn Chancellor.

TRC: Thank you Susan for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on your new release.

Susan: Thanks again for this opportunity!

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Susan Fox is graciously offering a signed, paper copy of FLY AWAY WITH ME to ONE (1) commenter at The Reading Cafe. Giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY

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Worth the Wait (Guthrie Brothers #2) by Lori Foster-a review

WORTH THE WAIT (Guthrie Brothers #2) by Lori Foster-a review

Worth The Wait

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / KOBO / Chapters Indigo /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date July 25, 2017

Ready or not…love will find a way

Single dad Hogan Guthrie is getting his life back on track, and working as the “barbecue master” at a local diner is just a temporary detour. He and restaurant owner Violet Shaw constantly butt heads…until one night they end up mingling other parts instead. Hogan thought he had the recipe for happiness all figured out. But loyal, carefree Violet is daring him to trust his impulses…and see just how sweet small-town living—and loving—can be.

Nathan Hawley traded his SWAT team credentials for a sheriff’s badge, but a gorgeous new neighbor is shaking up his orderly life. Nathan has a hunch there’s more to Brooklin Sweet than meets the eye—but given her caution about getting involved, he has his work cut out for him. Still, there’s something about the elusive beauty Nathan can’t walk away from—and helping her come to terms with her past might pave the way to the future they both secretly long for.

•••••••••••••

REVIEW:  WORTH THE WAIT is the second installment in Lori Foster’s contemporary, adult GUTHRIE BROTHERS romance series. This is single father and accountant Hogan Guthrie, and diner owner Violet Shaw’s story line. There is a secondary romance developing between former SWAT team member and Sheriff Nathan Hawley, and jewelry designer Brooklin Sweet. WORTH THE WAIT can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any important information from the previous story line is revealed where necessary.

Told from several third person perspectives WORTH THE WAIT follows two developing romances. Hogan Guthrie thought he had everything figured out but the death of his wife left Hogan a single father financially struggling to make good on a promise he made to his seventeen-year old son Colt. Working as the part-time barbecue master at Screwy Louie’s alongside the woman he can’t stop thinking about Hogan battles to separate business from pleasure. Enter diner owner Violet Shaw, his boss, and the woman with whom Hogan will fall in love. But all of Hogan’s attempts at seduction are pushed aside as Violet struggles with Hogan’s reputation as a one-night stand kinda guy. A bout of pneumonia, and a worrisome injury find Hogan playing nursemaid to a reluctant and ailing Violet. Slowly worming his way into Violet’s heart Hogan soon realizes that Violet may be the woman he claims for his happily ever after. But jealousy and temper will get the best of Violet Shaw threatening Hogan’s fragile hold on his new-found independence.

Meanwhile, Sheriff Nathan Hawley is desperate to get to know his gorgeous new neighbor but suspects Brooklin Sweet is keeping secret a dark and painful past. Nathan’s early morning runs with Brooklin, and flirty ‘hellos’ are rebuffed and ignored on more than one occasion but a late night scare finds Brooklin face to face with the man she had kept at a distance but a distance that is slowly closing as threats against Brooklin become personal and real.

WORTH THE WAIT follows numerous paths and several developing romances that intersect throughout the story. Brooklin’s past comes seeking revenge threatening many of the people she has come to love in the small town of Clearbrook Ohio. The premise is entertaining; the characters are playful; the romances are sexy and seductive. WORTH THE WAIT is a heartwarming, energetic and passionate story line by romance author Lori Foster.

Click HERE for Sandy’s review of book one-DON’T TEMPT ME

Copy supplied by Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

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The Hunting Grounds (Hidden Sins #2) by Katee Robert-Review, Excerpt & Giveaway

THE HUNTING GROUNDS (Hidden Sins#2) by Katee Robert-Review, Excerpt & Giveaway

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THE HUNTING GROUNDS
Hidden Sins #2
by Katee Robert
Release Date: July 25, 2017
Genre: adult, contemporary, murder mystery, romantic suspense

The Hunting Grounds

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / B&N / BAM / Chapters Indigo /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date July 25, 2017

For two FBI agents with a past, love becomes a matter of life and death in the new Hidden Sins novel from New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Katee Robert.

Maggie Gaines used to be an FBI agent—top of her class and one of the bright, up-and-coming stars—until she spectacularly fell apart during her first high-profile case. That was eight years ago. Now she’s a ranger at Glacier National Park, and she’s found some measure of peace. But when the body of a murdered woman is discovered, she must finally put the past behind her and work with the one man she thought she’d never see again.

For months, Vic Sutherland has been hunting a killer who’s been targeting unsuspecting hikers in national parks—and now the predator has come to Glacier. Vic knows the case will bring him face-to-face with his former partner, yet nothing can prepare him for seeing Maggie again after all these years, or for the memories of passion it stirs in both of them.

As the investigation brings them closer together—and closer to the killer—Maggie and Vic fear they have only each other to trust. But even that might not be enough to make it out of Glacier alive.

••••••••••

REVIEW: THE HUNTING GROUNDS is the second installment in Katee Robert’s contemporary, adult HIDDEN SINS murder/mystery, romantic suspense series. This is FBI agent Vic Sutherland, and former FBI agent and park ranger Maggie Gaines’s story line. THE HUNTING GROUNDS can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any important information from the previous story line is revealed where necessary. Vic Sutherland, and his boss at the FBI Britton Washburne were first introduced in book one THE DEVIL’S DAUGHTER.

Told from several third person points of view including Maggie and Vic, with flashbacks to the past THE HUNTING GROUNDS focuses on the search for a killer who is targeting hikers at various National Parks. When the most recent victim(s) is discovered in Glacier National Park park ranger Maggie Gaines comes face to face with her past-FBI BAU (Behavioral Analysis Unit) specialist Vic Sutherland-her former partner and the man with whom she had fallen in love. What ensues is the search for a killer, as Maggie and Vic analyze the path of jealousy and revenge.

THE HUNTING GROUNDS is a story of mystery, murder, suspense and retribution. As the number of victims grows, Vic and Maggie begin to break down the potential who and why of the killer’s murder spree.

The relationship between Maggie and Vic is one of mutual attraction but seven years earlier Vic Sutherland was a married man, and our heroine walked away from a career in the BAU when her first case went all to h*ll. Their attraction for one another has never waivered, and Maggie and Vic are wiling to reclaim what was lost years before.

There is a large ensemble cast of secondary and supporting characters including the head of the BAU Britton Washburne, Vic’s FBI partner Tucker Kendrick, park ranger Ava Boyle, seasonal ranger David Downey, coroner Dr. Katherine Huxley, and Maggie’s current boss Wyatt Thornton. There are also a large number of hikers who become targets for a psychopath h*ll bent for fury in the name of betrayal and revenge.

The superb and detailed world building focuses on the sights and sounds of life on the trails; the geography of Glacier National Park; and the search for a killer who will not stop until everyone is gone.

THE HUNTING GROUNDS does not focus so much on the romance aspect of the leading couple but focuses more on the hunt for a killer so I hazard to label THE HUNTING GROUNDS a true romantic suspense. The relationship between Maggie and Vic is a little more than a bi-product of working together but a relationship that has the potential to resume when all is said and done. The premise is intriguing but predictable although the killer’s motivation needed a more thorough explanation; the romance is limited and secondary to the overall story line; the leading characters are reserved and fell a little flat. THE HUNTING GROUNDS by Katee Robert is an imaginative tale of murder, suspense and revenge.

Click HERE for Sandy’s review of book one- THE DEVIL’S DAUGHTER

Copy supplied for review

Reviewed by Sandy

 

The Hunting Grounds Teaser

excerpt

NOTE: The excerpt is intended for mature readers due to strong language and text

The Hunting Grounds Excerpt

Copyright © 2017 Katee Robert

 

Vic’s gaze fell on his phone. Maggie’s number was now in the contacts folder. It would be easy to dial it, just to check on her.
Except it was late, and she hadn’t asked for him to babysit her.
He’d gone years without seeing her, and now that they were in the same general area, it was like they were two magnets that could barely resist the pull. He wanted to hear her voice, to sit her down and share a meal that wasn’t military issue, to actually talk.
His phone rang, which startled him so much he almost dropped it. Vic stared at the screen for several precious seconds, wondering if he was more tired than he’d thought, because it sure as fuck looked like Maggie was calling him. “Sutherland.”
“It’s me.”
He sat on the edge of the bed, suddenly painfully aware that he wore only a towel. It shouldn’t matter. She couldn’t see him, didn’t know what he was or wasn’t wearing, but it did matter. “Hey, Maggie.”
“I have to apologize.” He could almost feel her soft sigh. “You were right, and I was acting like a stubborn kid. This whole thing—the murders in the park and having to deal with my past and you—has got me all twisted up.”
Maybe it was the events of the last two days, but he was so goddamn tired of doing the noble thing. He never put himself or his personal shit before a case. Not once.
He’d never wanted to before.
“I twist you up?”
“As if you didn’t know. I had something of a crush on you when we were partners—which I’m sure you knew after I threw myself at you—and apparently I didn’t outgrow it as much as I thought.”
The dimness of the room evoked an intimacy he didn’t deserve. Was Maggie sitting in her bedroom in low light, too? He liked the picture that made. “You have nothing to apologize for.”
“I’ve been making an ass of myself since you stepped off that helicopter.” She shifted, the sound painfully loud in the near silence. “And I’m doing it again, apparently. My whole point was that I’m sorry and I’ll be professional from now on. You don’t have to worry about any breakdowns or hissy fits.”
If he was smart, he’d take her apology for what it was and allow it to move them back to solid ground. There were lives on the line and a condensed timeline that was only going to get more condensed with each body that popped up.
But when Vic spoke, he didn’t move them back to firm ground. He threw them right over the edge of the cliff. “Fuck being professional. I want you, Maggie. Not the former FBI agent. Not the park ranger. I want you.”


 

About The Author

Katee RobertsNew York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Katee Robert learned to tell her stories at her grandpa’s knee. Her 2015 title, The Marriage Contract, was a RITA finalist, and RT Book Reviews named it ‘a compulsively readable book with just the right amount of suspense and tension.” When not writing sexy contemporary and romantic suspense, she spends her time playing imaginary games with her children, driving her husband batty with what-if questions, and planning for the inevitable zombie apocalypse. Connect with Katee at:

Website | Facebook | Twitter| GoodReads | Instagram |

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Interview with Fitness & Cover Model Nick Bennett

INTERVIEW with  Fitness and Cover Model Nick Bennett

TRC: We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Follow Nick: Facebook / Instagram/ Twitter

Nick Bennett 14Nick: I’m Nick Bennett, I am the youngest of three brothers, my parents are still together. I grew up playing all sports and fell in love with working out when I was 13 years old in a before school weightlifting program.

TRC: What were your dreams and aspirations growing up?

Nick: I never really had any dreams or aspirations growing up. I never knew what I wanted to be career wise and as for out of this world dreams such as going pro in football or any other sport I never wanted it. I guess I just lived my life day to day and was motivated in the now and never really thought about the future too much.

TRC: When not modeling what is your ‘day job’?

Nick: I work in the service industry in Las Vegas, I have a bachelors degree in health sciences but I feel as if I am still currently too ” young minded” to be able to lock myself in a hospital or small office at this point in my life. I also dabble in the stock market with investments as well as personal training, both online and in person.

Nick Bennett MN ForgyTRC: What first sparked your interest in modeling? Is there a defining moment where you knew that modeling was something you were interested in pursuing?

Nick: A friend of mine in college recommend I get into it “mainly because of my physique” and so I created a Model Mayhem profile. I knew I was interested in pursuing modeling once I started getting paid for photo shoots “not long after creating my model Mayhem Mayhem account”. I was 18 years old and charging anywhere from 75-150 dollars an hour for shoots. I was hooked on the easy money as well as the attention it brought from my peers. Some negative because in male modeling yNick Bennett Cover 6ou are always exposed to what some people may not view as normal, in my case I was exposed to a pretty large gay fan base which I love, as well as a female fan base.

TRC: Have you ever had a photo shoot that went completely wrong?

Nick: Yes I have had photo shoots where I was extremely uncomfortable and manipulated after already showing up to the shoot on what the contents of the shoot would contain. I was 18 and was only seeing easy money but I quickly learned what the industry can be like sometimes.

TRC: Nudity in modeling or acting can be controversial. Some pictures can cross the line between sexuality to pornography. What would you tell young models/actors /body builders just entering the business about nude modeling and photography?

CavemanNick: My advice is very simple. To each his own. The internet is a hell of a place. If you’re comfortable being nude than be nude. Just know your son and daughter and everyone else related to you will be able to see that at some point in their lives. If you really want the money and find great opportunity in it maybe use an alias. That way you’re only googleable with your alias UNTIL the super creepers find out who you really are and then blast you on blogs.

TRC: The modeling industry exposes you to many people and sometimes it can be very stressful. What do you do when the stress becomes overwhelming?

Nick: Honestly I’m blessed enough to have never experienced any stress and or drama. I am decently “well known” I would say but I like to think I’m in the industry and yet at the same time not in the industry. I don’t get involved with any drama and most of my posts are directed towards positivity and nothing more. Getting too heavily involved would ruin the fun for me. Remember I’m just a kid from a small Florida town “Merritt Island” who just so happen to get pretty buff and doesn’t have a half bad face to look at 🙂

TRC: At times, there has been a ‘stigma’ surrounding the male model and the romance-cover industry but the popularity of the romance story line has skyrocketed in the last few years especially with the erotic and sensual cover images. What is your opinion about the recent popularity and the very busy industry of the ‘romance cover model’?

Nick Bennett 15Nick: I think its amazing!! I had no idea it even existed. I still remember my first cover, an image from FuriousFotog and a cover for Lani Lynn Vale. At the time I was only shooting modeling images for self promotion and to grow my social media. After shooting with Furious I was randomly sitting on my couch one day and got a paypl deposit followed by a text message explaining what it was all about. That was all she wrote and I kinda of blew up from there once everyone saw me on her cover and said “who is the new guy!!??’ I think it’s amazing that something as small as changing the cover of your book from a stock image to an actual person that the fans can communicate with and see at events was a genius idea.

TRC: What do you do to prepare yourself for a shoot?

Nick: Well this is where I SHOULD lie and say what needs to be done to live a healthy fit lifestyle and maintain a well oiled machine physique BUT….. I am genetically blessed. I eat literally whatever I want, whenever I want to do it, and I have pretty good abs year round. Every shoot I have ever done all I did to prep was try to work on my tan. Don’t get me wrong I bust my ass in the gym 5-7 days a week since I was 13 years old but I do get to live both worlds and eat amazing food while still maintaining what most would call a “goals body”

TRC: Do you know the number of novel covers that your image has appeared?

Nick: Including couples images as well as solo I am close to 50 sold images. Some of the images were just purchased with no book currently written, but it’s flattering that an author can see an image of myself, or a couples image and be inspired to write a whole story based on what they see.

Nick Bennett Cover 9TRC: Do you remember the first romance cover on which you appeared? Do you have a favorite?

Nick: Yes, like I said earlier my first cover was a FuriousFotog image for Lani Lynn Vale ‘Life to my Flight’…. and I didn’t even have to go back on my Facebook to check if I’m correct. It was a major turning point in my life and I thank both of them for welcoming me with open arms into the community. I cannot say I have a favorite…….. or maybe I can 😉 but I won’t.

TRC: Would you please tell us what you do to relax?

Nick: I love just snuggling up in bed with my girlfriend Madena. I really have a queen: she massages me without me asking, draws baths with all the fancy stuff I don’t know how to use, and is always super supportive of any work or modeling endeavor I decide to embark on. Every day with her is pretty relaxing in itself.

TRC: What three things would you like to accomplish in the next five years?

Nick: purchase a home, have a stable career instead of hustling with multiple “jobs” and maybe be married and have or start a family

TRC: What is something that few, if anybody, knows about you?

Nick: I am the tallest in my family at a whopping 5’7″ haha and I sleep with a blanket that was given to me as an infant every night which I hope to pass along to my child if and when I may ever have one.

Nick Bennett collage

TRC: What do you believe is the biggest misconception about modeling ?

Nick: Stereotypes exist for a reason BUT I don’t like it that some people view myself in particular as douchey arrogant or uneducated just because I have tattoos, muscles, and hair that’s low on the sides and long on top hah.

TRC: What type of music do you listen to? What songs are on your playlist today?

Nick: I mostly listen to early 90’s and 2000’s hip hop rap and r&b. Love classic rock as well and some punk rock screamo stuff for the gym.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Nick: Pretty solid interview

TRC: Thank you !

Nick Bennett Anne Mercier

LIGHTNING ROUND

Favorite Food:sushi

Favorite Dessert: multiple cheesecakes

Favorite Movie:anything by Pixar or Dreamworks

Favorite TV Show: Supernatural

Last Movie that you saw: Straight Outta Compton

Secret Celebrity Crush: none

Dark or Milk Chocolate: milk

Do you have any pets? Pitbulls back with my parents and a small Yorkie named Ollie in Vegas

Pet Peeve: talking over certain parts of certain songs, and crappy people who do extremely well in life.

TRC: Thank you Nick for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on all of your success and the numerous cover images we see every day.

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All I Ever Wanted by LuAnn McLane – a Review

All I Ever Wanted by LuAnn McLane – a Review

 

All I Ever WantedAmazon / B&N / Kobo / BAM

Description:
When Grady Heart, former lead singer of the cult-phenomenon boy band Heartbeat and eldest of the brothers, decides to bring the group back together for a highly anticipated reunion concert, he doesn’t expect to be met with so much resistance from his brothers. He also doesn’t expect them to hire his ex-girlfriend and ex-Heartbeat choreographer Arabella York to help the band rock some new dance moves.

Back in Heartbeat’s glory days the brooding bad boy fell hard for Arabella; the studious, stable dance teacher tamed Grady’s wild side but her lack of trust in him eventually drove them apart. Although their chemistry burns hotter than ever, Grady tries to keep his relationship with Arabella strictly professional this time around but in his heart, he might just still long to find out what could have been.

 

 

Review:

All I Ever Wanted by LuAnn McLane is the 1st book in her new Hearthrob series.   I love McLane’s Cricket Creek series, and was looking forward to reading this new one.  Upon completion of All I Ever Wanted, I am happy to say that I really enjoyed the book and all the main characters.  It is different than the Cricket Creek series, as it revolves around brothers that were part of a band “HeartBeat” when they were teenagers.  When their mother had passed away from Lupus, the boys decided to do a reunion concert to help raise money for the foundation they created for Lupus under their mother’s name.

Grady Heart is our hero, and the former lead singer of the boy-band Heartbeat.  As the brothers start practicing months before the concert, they have problems doing the movements they did years before.  Grady’s brothers keep insisting to hire their former Choreographer, Arabella York, to come back and help set up new dance moves that they can do now.  The problem?   Grady and Arabella were lovers during that time, and she left him broken hearted when she found him with a naked girl in his dressing room.  Grady had tried to call Arabella to explain that is was not what she thought, but she never returned his calls.  This left Grady bitter, and refusing to allow them to bring Arabella back.  But of course, brothers will do what they think best.

Arabella wasn’t sure she wanted to accept the offer to help Heartbeat, when Grady’s brother Oliver called her.  She knew it would be difficult to face Grady again, but she needed the money to help pay for her new business venture.  

What follows is a sweet second chance romance between Arabella and Grady, as well as watching the band thrive under her choreography.  At first, Grady gave her a hard time, but slowly they both knew they still had strong feelings for each other.  Both had their own issues, which threatened to endanger their romance.  I loved the brothers, how they would do anything to help Grady forget the past and win over Arabella, and how much they cared about Arabella like a sister.  Very nicely done.

All I Ever Wanted was a fun storyline, with a great couple, great secondary characters, sexy romance, and watching the behind the scenes of the band.    LuAnn McLane once again gives us another sweet romance, and I for one cannot wait to see who will be the hero in the next book. 

Reviewed by Barb

Copy provided by Publisher

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