Geronimo Hotshot (The Ben Blackshaw Series #4) by Robert Blake Whitehill-Review, Guest Post and Giveaway

GERONIMO HOTSHOT (The Ben Blackshaw Series #4) by Robert Blake Whitehill-Review, Guest Post and Giveaway

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Geronimo Hotshot
The Ben Blackshaw Series #4
by Robert Blake Whitehill
Release Date: October 1, 2015
Genre: adult, contemporary, mystery, suspense

Geronimo Hotshot / / B&N / KOBO /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date: October 1, 2015

Ben Blackshaw’s wife, LuAnna, has been shot and lies in a permanent coma on Smith Island. Blackshaw has a disastrous falling out with his best friend, Knocker Ellis. Licking his wounds alone on Lethe Island, Blackshaw resolves to quit the Chesapeake. To his disgust, he soon uncovers evidence of the brutal lynching of a young black boy. Police fail to capture the murderers despite the evidence Blackshaw turns over; Blackshaw himself becomes a suspect. He deploys west to Arizona in search of the killers, and discovers an encampment of armed ranchers, along with a one-percenter biker gang, and a cult of white supremacist vigilantes who have all sworn to stop the flood of undocumented immigrants crossing the Mexico line.

But everyone hides deadly secrets, including a biologic Weapon of Mass Destruction, the bizarre shoot-down of a Customs and Border Protection helicopter, and the disappearance of its crew. The vigilante camp itself is surrounded by a raging wildfire. Blackshaw teams with Del, an Apache member of the Geronimo Interagency Hotshot Crew, who was detailed to battle the blaze. Together they patrol in on the gathering of monsters. Part of their treacherous journey takes Blackshaw and Del through a cavern system of strange, wondrous, and lethal beauty. In the end, fire and hate threaten to consume everyone; the light of the inferno reveals that Blackshaw might be no better than the quarry he hunts.


REVIEW: GERONIMO HOTSHOT is the fourth installment in Robert Blake Whitehill’s adult, contemporary Ben Blackshaw suspense series focusing on retired Navy SEAL Ben Blackshaw. Although this is the fourth book in the series, GERONIMO HOTSHOT can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any previous information will be revealed where necessary.

Told from several third person perspectives the storyline advances the series one month. Ben’s wife had been injured in the previous storyline (TAP RACK BANG) and currently remains in a coma; our hero is unable to consider the future without his wife and embarks on another solo adventure to Bisbee, Arizona where racist bigots and white supremacists find themselves involved in a high tech drug war with the FBI, Customs and Border Patrol, a former sheriff, a murderous motorcycle gang, and the possibility of a biological weapon of mass destruction. Raging wildfires add another dangerous dimension to the equation wherein Ben Bradshaw finds himself trapped between the fires and his imminent death.

The lynching and murder of a young African American boy finds Ben on a mission to locate the people responsible and the connection to a religious cult known as the Pure Nation Comitatus wherein the leader presents himself as The Messiah. On a cross country journey from Smith Island on the Chesapeake Bay to the drought riddled forests of Arizona, Ben will come in contact with several people whose connections to and information about the PNC sparks a new sense of dread and urgency in our hero. A local Native American will follow Ben on his journey in the hopes of retribution and revenge.

GERONIMO HOTSHOT is a storyline with several intersecting paths, graphic violence, murder, action and adventure. From racism, prejudice, drug trafficking and murderous vendettas GERONIMO HOTSHOT looks at cult and culture; society, social inequality and community; race relations and ‘new age religion’ wherein people are seeking direction from a charismatic leader who demands obedience and proof of loyalty.

The numerous colorful and dynamic characters drive a good portion of the storyline as the build up follows several plotlines that will intersect and merge throughout the course of the novel. One thing is for sure: Ben Blackshaw is not your stereotypical hero-more of an anti hero-but a man who will command your respect and interest. There is intrapersonal conflict for Ben; and intergroup conflict between the PNC, biker gangs and the former local sheriff. The backdrop of the Arizona forests is a major player throughout the story.

GERONIMO HOTSHOT is an intriguing, enthralling and intense topical storyline. Robert Blake Whitehill will seduce your mind into a world of retribution and revenge. The destructive nature and powerful control of cults, drug trafficking and gangs are central to the storyline premise wherein the ill-fated machinations of the Messiah, the sheriff, and the drug lord will see reprisal and retaliation in the form of Ben Blackshaw and the FBI. Prepare to be pulled into a dark and destructive storyline.

Reading Order
1. Deadrise
2. Nitro Express
3. Tap Rack Bang
4. Geronimo Hotshot

Copy supplied by the author.

Reviewed by Sandy

guest post

Amateur Editors and Rewrites: From Hard Lessons to High Praise
By Robert Blake Whitehill

In film making, the editor assembles the movie from the raw footage gathered during production. In the newspaper business, an editor has the overall shape of the day’s edition in mind when recommending changes to the articles, and laying out their positions. In writing novels, there are different sorts of editors, and they can all make your book better, or make you crazy, depending on your point of view.

Every reader with an advance copy of your latest manuscript is also an editor. Every moment of the story, every word choice gets a subconscious yay or nay of judgment from the reader about the work. The reader might not realize this process is going on if you know your business, tell an interesting, well-structured story, and have done a few passes over the work by yourself before handing it off.

What happens if the reader finds a typo, or doesn’t like something in the story? The reader is pulled out of the story. Something got a nay. A professional editor will tell you exactly what the problem is with fine strokes of a red pen, or clever notes in an annotated .pdf file. An amateur reader/editor will identify trouble, or perhaps a specific issue. As writer, you might not agree that the noted point is a problem. That is always your choice.

Don’t overlook your readers’ concerns. They might not be able to articulate issues with the specific clarity of a professional editor, but their inner story-tellers are wired to flag problem areas. It is up to you to determine if the reader’s note relates to the exact place they mention, or if it is referred pain from a structural issue elsewhere in the manuscript. The reader is not at fault for missing your genius. Trust the reader’s judgment. Examine the area of concern closely. Nothing seems amiss? Next, examine what has come before that problem area in the manuscript. Still all good? Examine what comes after the place your reader planted that red flag. Yes, not providing certain information soon enough in the story might leave your reader confused. You cannot afford that.

The amateur editor will help you make your manuscript better. As an author, you must learn to interpret an amateur editor’s remarks to fully exploit their great value. Remember, amateur means doing a thing for the love of it. Quite possibly it is not for the love of reading that your editor has taken on your work. It is likely the reader has accepted your manuscript out of love for you. Respect that this affection can lead you to the truth of your best work.

~~Robert Blake Whitehill~~

About The Author

Follow Robert: Facebook / Website / Twitter /

Robert Blake WhitehillRobert Blake Whitehill was born into a Quaker family in Mardela Springs, just outside Salisbury on Maryland’s Eastern Shore peninsula. The family home lay next to the pond that powered a colonial-era relic, the Barren Creek Mill. He grew up sailing the Chesapeake Bay, and one of her most beautiful tributaries, the Chester River.

After graduating from Westtown School Whitehill stayed in Pennsylvania to earn his B.A. in creative writing at Haverford and Bryn Mawr Colleges. Later he trained as an actor at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, and at The Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theatre in New York City. As with David Mamet, exhaustive studies of the best English language drama for the stage and screen transformed an aspiring actor into a passionate writer.

An early focus on feature screenwriting earned Whitehill film festival wins at the Hudson Valley Film Festival, and the Hamptons International Film Festival where he also received an Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship for his script U.X.O. (Unexploded Ordnance). His feature script Blue Rinse, co-written with Andrea Shane is currently under option with producer Bill Jarblum (Charley Bartlett, The Little Traitor, Cloudburst), with Olympia Dukakis to star, and Thom Fitzgerald slated to direct.

While writing many highly rated episodes of Discovery/Times Channel’s The New Detectives, Daring Capers, and The Bureau, he served as the Vice President of Independent Film Acquisitions for the groundbreaking, developing and managing their Independent Film Channel.

His first thriller in the Ben Blackshaw series, Deadrise, was named by Cyrus Webb to the Conversations Book Club Top 100 Books of 2012. His second book in the series, Nitro Express, was named to the Conversations Book Club Top 50 Books of Fiction of 2013.

Movie studio HatLine Productions is optioning the first two books, as well as the third title in the series, Tap Rack Bang, for development into feature films.

Whitehill lives in New Jersey with his wife and son. For a number of years, he has worked with the Montclair Ambulance Unit as an emergency medical technician.

When not sailing, or knocking around the sky in a Cessna 152, Whitehill is a contributing writer to Chesapeake Bay Magazine.


Robert Blake Whitehill is graciously offering a signed paper copy of GERONIMO HOTSHOT to FIVE (5) lucky commenters at The Reading Cafe.

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Run! Hold On Season 3 by Peter Darley-Review, Guest Post & Giveaway

RUN! : Hold On ! Season 3 by Peter Darley-Review, Guest Post & Giveaway

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Hold On! Season 3
by Peter Darley
Release Date: August 17, 2015
Genre: adult, military suspense, sci-fi/paranormal

Run / /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date August 17, 2015

Book Three in the Hold On! Trilogy.

The world believes Brandon Drake is dead, but he awakens in a secret government complex believing it to be 2012. The last four years of his life have been erased from his conscious mind. Only his true, malevolent self, The Scorpion, remains.

He soon finds himself dispatched on an assassination mission, but the mission fails as he is struck down by a debilitating pain in his head.

Before long, he discovers he’s been duped, and that four years have passed since his last memory. A bloodbath ensues as he escapes from the complex and sets out to find the truth about his missing years. He learns of a woman named Belinda Reese and associates her with his terrible pain. To be strong enough to destroy those who betrayed him, he sets out to kill Belinda, leaving a trail of death and destruction in his wake.

However, a mysterious figure wearing a black helmet appears to him in the darkness. He is the true cause of Drake’s pain: an adversary who identifies himself only—as The Interceptor.

Past, present, and future collide as the Hold On! Trilogy reaches its jaw-dropping conclusion.

CAUTION: This entry contains violent and adult themes.


REVIEW: RUN ! is the third installment in Peter Darley’s adult Hold On military suspense (slightly sci-fi/paranormal) series focusing on former soldier Brandon Drake.

NOTE: There may be some spoilers in my review if you have not read the previous installments.

Told from several third person perspectives RUN commences several weeks following the events of GO ! book two wherein Brandon Drake is presumed dead following an explosion aimed at ending his life. At a secret government facility in the Mojave desert Brandon is very much alive and unaware of the last four years of his life. The Brandon Drake we have come to love is no longer the Brandon Drake who awakens from a six week coma-he is a changed man; a man who has undergone a personality reassignment making Brandon one of the most dangerous men on the planet. While his former love grieves for what could have been, Brandon sets out to destroy everything that was and still remains in his life including the woman he can no longer remember.

Peter Darley’s RUN is the culmination of one man’s descent into H*ll and back; a former soldier whose entire life has been focused upon inflicting pain and suffering on anyone who stands between Brandon and his latest assignment. Brandon is a mercenary; a soldier for hire, whose earlier years of abuse and torture at the hands of his foster father, have shaped the beast known as The Scorpion. As The Scorpion Brandon is feared; a take no prisoners attitude whose aim is deadly with accurate results.

RUN is a storyline with graphic violence; an anti hero whose murderous spree and the resulting carnage will claim numbers in the hundreds as the FBI, CIA and secret government divisions hunt for the man whose need for revenge is a promise not a threat.

Once again, RUN, like the previous installments, has a large ensemble cast of supporting and secondary characters including Brandon’s family who become one of Brandon’s primary targets. A good portion of the storyline is driven by the others: some with murderous intent; some with aspirations of ultimate global powers; and others who are hoping to survive another day.

The world building no longer focuses on Brandon Drake and Belinda Reese but on Brandon’s slide into the abyss. Several government agencies will go in search for Brandon but most will find themselves on the receiving end of Brandon’s need for vengeance and death.

RUN! is a revealing, imaginative and suspense filled conclusion to Peter Darley’s HOLD ON series. The non-stop action finds Brandon Drake ferreting out his next victim with sensational and dramatic results; very few will survive a face to face meeting. Brandon Drake aka The Scorpion is the result of a government experiment gone horribly wrong; where mind control has yet to reach its zenith when love and emotions continue to war with what’s real, what’s unknown, and a mind previously destroyed by an abusive past.

Copy supplied by the author.

Reviewed by Sandy

Series Spotlight

Hold On !
by Peter Darley
Release Date: July 7, 2014
Genre: mystery, suspense, action,romance

Hold OnClick HERE for Sandy’s review of HOLD ON ! / /

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date July 7, 2014

Two lovers! A deadly conspiracy! A race to freedom!

When Carringby Industries, a government-contracted arms manufacturer, is raided by what appear to be terrorists, the CEO’s secretary, Belinda Reese, is rescued by Brandon Drake, a dashing young AWOL soldier. Using an experimental test aircraft, he flees with her to his remote, isolated cabin in the mountains of Aspen.

While assisting in the design of military weaponry, Brandon discovered a plot within his own government to attack its own facilities, under the guidance of immoral politician, Senator Garrison Treadwell. Belinda’s body was not found among the dead at Carringby Industries, and Treadwell suspects that Drake was responsible for rescuing her. In an effort to entrap him, Treadwell arranges for an all points bulletin to be placed on Belinda

Deeply in love, Brandon and Belinda attempt to escape from America, only to endure one harrowing experience after another as they try to evade and expose Treadwell’s corrupt faction.

But on the run, with danger around every corner, Brandon makes a discovery so devastating that it shatters the very foundations of his reality.


(Hold On Season #2)
by Peter Darley
Release Date: May 26, 2015
Genre: adult, contemporary, romantic, suspense / / /

Click HERE for Sandy’s review of GO!

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date May 26, 2015

Brandon Drake has escaped from Leavenworth, aided by a new player who has entered the game. Tyler Faraday is the heir to an empire––and Brandon’s long-lost brother. Tyler enables Brandon’s reunion with his lover, Belinda, but Brandon is no longer the man she once knew. Haunted by memories of a life that never happened, he succumbs to the lure of alcohol.

Tyler has discovered he and Brandon have another sibling. Having been raised in a convent, their sister, Emily, has a crisis of faith and flees. On the road, she is kidnapped by a ruthless human trafficking organization run by a mysterious kingpin called Sapphire. Brandon, Tyler, and Belinda learn of Emily’s plight and begin their search for Sapphire’s location, hampered by Brandon’s growing alcohol dependency.

Meanwhile, Andrew Wilmot, new leader of a rogue government faction, seeks to use Brandon for his own nefarious plans, and hunts him down.

Brandon, Belinda, and Tyler’s quest leads to Los Angeles, where they search for the only one who knows Sapphire’s location––a former captive known only as Siren, and who may not even exist. Their quest is destined to lead to the most explosive action in the series so far.

Guest Post

The End? Or the REAL Beginning?

Well, what can I say? It’s been one hell of a ride through a cavalcade of cliffhangers to rival even those in the Hold On! series, itself. However, this time, it has resulted in a contender for the most extraordinary alliance in the world of contemporary literature. J

First, I will say a few things about Run! – Hold On! Season 3. Unlike Hold On! and Go! I knew exactly where the story was going before I even started writing it. The first two seasons introduced numerous concepts and characters that only received mentions. In a couple of cases, certain characters had been introduced previously, but wound up on the cutting room floor due to third party interference. Run! gave me the opportunity to bring these characters back into the official canon. Brandon’s commanding officer, his superior at Mach Industries, his abusive foster father, and Belinda’s mother-from-hell, all finally appear in the Trilogy’s conclusion.

I knew that I had to do something unexpected with the final act, and this one turns the entire concept on its head. Brandon’s malevolent, true persona, The Scorpion, only ever appeared fleetingly in the previous two novels, and was never explored as an actual character. He was just something that came over him during times of crisis. In Run! we get to experience who The Scorpion really is, and the extent to which the series’ hero could be irredeemably evil. Where before he saved his loved ones from certain peril, he is now the one they need saving from. The opening chapter tells the complete origin story, snippets of which had only previously been mentioned, or seen in flashbacks with no context.

However, fear not. The Interceptor – the heroic Brandon from Hold On! and Go! – is still around. Run! concludes all existing plotlines – but also leaves a door open for an entirely new one. I endeavoured to ensure that the hypothetical ‘next story’, Hold On! – Tomorrow, wasn’t absolutely necessary, and left it to my readers to decide if it should happen. So far, the idea has been received with great eagerness, which has thrilled me enormously.

But then I received a message on Facebook that made the next book an absolute certainty. Several months ago, just for fun, I created the hypothetical Hold On! soundtrack video, made up of the melodic rock songs that drove the original novel, and posted it on Youtube:

I took the title ‘Hold On’ from the fact that it is, hands down, the most used song title in the AOR/Melodic Rock genre.

Nothing really happened with the music video until a few weeks ago when Pierpaolo ‘Zorro11’ Monti, the founder of one of the bands featured in the video, contacted me.

He was so intrigued that I’d used one of his tracks in the video that he plugged it on rock sites across the internet. Suddenly, I was getting tagged and ‘friended’ by rock celebrities, and Pierpaolo and I quickly became friends.

Pierpaolo is the mastermind behind critically-acclaimed rock album projects, Shining Line, Charming Grace, and Room Experience, and he dropped a bombshell on me that literally blew me away. He wants to write and record the official theme song for Hold On! – Tomorrow, for inclusion on his next album. Movies and TV shows have ‘songs from’ soundtrack albums. But I don’t think this has ever happened with a book before.

I feel that this is an astonishing and unique alliance between fiction writer and musician. After a devastatingly harrowing journey through the writing world, I now have the opportunity to take the series farther, with the might of the rock world behind me. J

I have just begun working on Hold On! – Tomorrow, and over the next year, Pierpaolo and I will be liaising about the plot, and subsequently – the lyrics. I hope to release the new book – along with the theme song – toward the end of summer, 2016.

Run! – video trailer:



Peter Darley

About The author

Follow Peter: Blog / Twitter / Facebook /

peter-darley1Peter Darley (P.D. to his friends) is a British novelist, whose professional history is in showbusiness. He is a graduate of the Birmingham School of Speech and Dramatic Art, and he studied television drama at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA.) His television credits include guest-starring roles is UK productions such as BBC’s Crime Ltd, Stanley’s Dragon for ITV, The Bill, and Sky One’s Dream Team, and numerous TV commercials. He has also worked as a model, presenter, and voice-over artiste for ten years, and has acted as an agent for several variety acts.

His lifelong admiration of heroes, and love of roller-coaster-style thrills have been a huge influence on his writings.

He is also a professional close-up magician, a keen athlete and body builder, and lives with his wife in rural England.


Peter is offering an ecopy of HOLD ON!, GO! and RUN ! (The Trilogy) to ONE(1) lucky commenter at The Reading Cafe. ONE commenter will win a copy of all 3 ebooks.

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.

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9. Giveaway runs from September 16-20, 2015


Sleeping With the Enemy by Tracy Solheim – Review, Guest Post & Giveaway

Sleeping With the Enemy by Tracy Solheim – Review, Guest Post & Giveaway

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Sleeping with the Enemy
Out of Bounds #4
by Tracy Solheim
Release Date: September 1, 2015
Genre: adult, contemporary, romance, football

sleeping with the enemy

Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / BAM / The Book Depository

Dot-com millionaire Jay McManus is discovering that owning a pro football team like the Baltimore Blaze isn’t easy. An anonymous blogger is out to destroy his reputation, and now his team is being sued by its own cheerleaders. If Jay’s not careful, he could lose big—and not just financially.

Bridgett Janik’s brother may play for the Baltimore Blaze, but she’s not thrilled to be defending Jay McManus, the man who broke her heart. It’s bad enough she has to mingle with Jay during games, but working beside her former lover may be too much for her body—and her heart—to resist.

Jay’s determined not to let Bridgett slip away from him a second time. But, as the two follow the mysterious blogger’s trail, secrets—both past and present—are revealed, and Jay and Bridgett must decide if their relationship can be something more than just sleeping with the enemy.

Sleeping With the Enemy by Tracy Solheim is the 4th book in her Out of Bounds series. I have not read the earlier books, but after reading this book, I do plan on going back and read the other three. Sleeping With the Enemy reads very well as a standalone,

Bridgett Janik is our heroine, and she is a strong, smart, savvy one at that. Bridgett is a top notch lawyer, and isn’t too happy to be assigned to a case defending the Baltimore Blaze football team. The reason for her unhappiness? Jay McManus is our hero, and the owner of the Blaze. Jay and Bridgett had a relationship years before, which broke both of their hearts, with each having walked away blaming the other person.

With a scandal and threat of a lawsuit, Jay and Bridget are thrown together, and their feelings for each have not been forgotten. The chemistry between them is undeniably hot, and Jay is determined to win Bridget back, but only as a mistress; he will not allow his heart to fall for her again. Bridgett wants nothing to do with Jay, but she cannot control her lust for him.

In between the hot sex scenes, and the slow build romance being resurrected, there is a mystery of who is behind the false rumors and innuendo about the team and Jay. As secrets become unraveled, Jay begins to suspect that someone from his past is out to hurt him, but what he doesn’t know is how far this person has gone in trying to destroy his life.

This was a very nice second romance between Jay and Bridgett, but what I really enjoyed about the story was all the wonderful secondary characters that made up this story. Jay’s sister, Charlie was great, and I hope Solheim plans to give us her story soon. I also enjoyed Bridgett’s sister, though at times she needed to be smacked at her comments to Bridgett; and Linc was a good character that will need his story, too. The key to the story as we race to the finish: Will Jay allow himself to open his heart to Bridgett? Will Bridgett be able to trust Jay again? Will the truth come out what really happened all those years ago?

Tracy Solheim has written a wonderful story that has a bit of everything; great couple, sizzling romance, wonderful secondary characters, mystery, betrayal, and many secrets that will be revealed. I recommend you read Sleeping With the Enemy, as you will enjoy it as much as I did.

Reviewed by Barb

Copy provided by Publisher


Guest post-White and Red

Play List for Back to Before


I have a secret to share with you: I’m a huge music junkie. While everyone in my family will walk into a room and head straight for the television remote, I’m the one reaching for my iPod. In fact, I do some of my best scene development while listening to music. Unfortunately, I’m usually ironing or on the treadmill so those scenes sometimes get lost before I can reach a computer. But, trust me, before it evaporated, that prose was amazing.

Anyone who knows me will tell you that my musical tastes are somewhat eclectic. When I’m plotting, I tend to cycle through a variety of playlists—including rock, alternative, dance, musical theatre and country. The genre I select, in my mind, either represents the character or the scene I’m writing at the time. Here’s what I came up for my latest release, SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY:

  1. Cheerleader, by OMI. Okay, so I had to list this one, since the book revolves around the Baltimore Blaze’s litigious cheerleaders, the Sparks. But have you listened to this song? It’s so upbeat and lively that it’s the perfect song to write to, much less tromp around on the treadmill. Besides, my only other option here was Mickey, by Toni Basil and none of us needed that earworm.

     2.  We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together, Taylor Swift. Bridgett repeats this
          mantra every time she gets near Jay.

  1. Can’t Feel My Face, The Weeknd. Jay is such an Alpha male that he’d never admit to needing Bridgett. But if he did, he’d totally sing this song. Okay, maybe not. It is kind of ridiculous. But you have to admit, Tom Cruise did a great job lip syncing to it on The Tonight Show!
  2. Photograph, by Ed Sheeran. The first line of the lyrics says it all: “Lovin’ is hard.” Jay and Bridgett’s story is poignant and, at times, painful in the re-telling. This song is about the perseverance of love. Jay and Bridgett’s love definitely withstood the test of time, geography, and deceit. Plus, Ed Sheeran is a fellow Ginger and I have to give him his props.
  3. Like I’m Gonna Lose You, by Meghan Trainor and John Legend. This is a soulful song that epitomizes Jay’s determination to win Bridgett back. Of course, Jay’s idea of a win would be luring Bridgett back into his bed. He’s determined not to let his heart become engaged again. That would give Bridgett too much power over him and Jay plays to win. All the time.
  4. Lips Are Movin’, by Meghan Trainor. This would be Bridgett’s other theme song. She doesn’t trust Jay as far as her football playing brother can throw the team’s owner. Too bad her body isn’t listening to her Harvard educated brain on this one.
  5. Reason to Believe, by Bruce Springsteen. If you follow me on social media or read my blog, you’ll know I’m a huge Springsteen fan. He’s not only my favorite singer, but one of my favorite authors as well. No playlist of mine would be complete without one of his songs. And this one says so much about Jay and Bridgett’s relationship. Both have gone on with their lives and have dealt with the mess life has thrown at them. Both are struggling with the reaction of their bodies to each other despite the hurt they’ve afflicted. In the end, they have to find a reason to believe in their attraction—their love.
  6. Let’s Get It On Like Marvin Gay, by Charlie Puth (with Meghan Trainor. Are you sensing a theme here? MT is my “it” girl right now.) There are some steamy scenes in this book. Nuff said.
  7. A Thousand Years, Christina Perri. No matter how Bridgett thinks Jay has deceived her, she still can’t help loving him. No matter how long they have been apart, her love for him won’t die.
  8. Feel Again, by One Republic. The lyrics sum up how Jay and Bridgett’s happily ever after would sound if it were written about in a song instead of a book. “My heart was numb, but I feel again.” “I was a lonely soul, but that’s the old me. A little wiser now…I feel again.” Love it.

Are you a music fan? What genre is your favorite? Do you have a song that best describes your life right now?



Jay and Bridgett are stranded in a motel together during a tropical storm.

Bridgett shook her head, the brief glimpse behind the cool veneer she kept in place closed. Instead she gestured to his pants, which she’d hung over a chair. “They’re still damp at the cuffs but I squeezed as much of the water out as I could. You may have to roll them up at the ankles.”

He arched an eyebrow at her. “Worried you might not be able to keep your hands off me without my pants on?”

Her blush was obvious even in the candle light as she quickly stood and walked over to the dresser filled with the food he’d brought back—a can of potato chips, peanut butter crackers, two apples, and the necessity of women everywhere: a bag of Dove chocolate. He’d also grabbed a couple bottles of water, a bottle of chardonnay, toothpaste and two toothbrushes. The wine wasn’t the best vintage, but he knew they’d both appreciate something a little stronger than water right about now.

“Thanks for leaving the roller food at the gas station, but you forgot the corkscrew.”

She kept her back to him as he pulled on his pants. He stepped behind her, reaching past her shoulder into his briefcase and pulled out his pocket knife. Bridgett’s breath caught as his arm brushed over hers. When he clicked a button on the bottom, a corkscrew emerged. Jay handed it to her and went into the bathroom to grab the two plastic cups.

“I should have known,” she said as she worked the screw into the cork. “You never went anywhere without one that summer. Frankly, I’m surprised you went into the dot-com industry and didn’t go into the wine business like you’d planned.”

“Who says I didn’t,” he asked, taking the bottle from her and finishing the job.

Bridgett held the glasses while he poured. “I guess there’s a lot about each other we’ll never know.”

Her words sounded almost wistful and the warm wine went down rough as Jay swallowed. “Even without being chilled, our chardonnay is definitely better than this.”

She sat on the bed, leaning on one arm as she sipped from her cup with the other. “So tell me, how did the guy who wanted to rule the world one bottle of wine at a time end up establishing a major dot-com business instead?”

“There’s a lot more money to be made on the Internet than in the vineyards.” He sat down on the bed across from her, leaning up against the headboard and crossing his feet at the ankles.

“But wine was your passion.”

Jay eyed her over the rim of his cup. “I’ve learned that it’s not always a good idea to be ruled by passion.”

Bridgett kept her gaze level with his. “Exactly what I’ve been telling you all along.”

“I didn’t say I gave up on passion, Bridgett. I’ll never do that.”

That got the reaction he was hoping for as she gulped the remainder of her wine and began prying open a package of peanut butter crackers.



About The Author
Tracy SolheimMy creative writing career started in the fourth grade when I published my first book. It was a bestseller–mainly because my dad bought all ten copies I’d made on the school’s prehistoric Xerox machine. From there, I moved to newspaper reporting with a monthly column in a local newspaper. A bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Tennessee landed me in Washington, DC, where I wrote reports for Congress while pursuing a Master’s degree in Legislative Affairs from The George Washington University.

Aside from a brief stint in television production for NBC Sports at the Seoul Olympics, most of my early writing consisted of crafting lengthy government reports. Not exactly the most scintillating backlist, I know! My creative writing projects had to wait until I could squeeze them in between my paying gig and my family’s busy schedule. I finally realized the dream of becoming a published author in May, 2013 with the release of my debut novel, GAME ON, through Berkley Publishing.

I went on to release four books in the Out of Bounds series during my first year as an author. In addition to the books about the fictitious Baltimore Blaze football team, I also write the Second Chances series for Berkley and digital novellas set in the small coastal town of Magnolia Bay for Tule Publishing. Check out my books page for excerpts and buy links.

Currently, I live in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia, with my husband, two kids, a wild Labrador Retriever puppy and a mare named after my debut novel. When I’m not writing, I enjoy photography, cooking, and reading–shocker, right? Be sure to friend me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter. Or, leave me your email address to receive my newsletter.

I look forward to hearing from you and thanks for stopping by.



Tracy’s publisher is offering a papercopy of SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY 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.

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3. Please LIKE and Follow Tracy Solheim  on Facebook

4. Please FOLLOW The Reading Cafe on TSU

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

6. FOLLOW us on Twitter for an additional entry.

7. Please FOLLOW us on GOODREADS for an additional entry.

8. Giveaway open to USA only.

9. Giveaway runs from September 8-12, 2015


Tracker’s End (Wind Dragons MC #3) by Chantal Fernando-Review and Interview

TRACKER’S END (Wind Dragons MC #3) by Chantal Fernando-Review and Interview

Tracker's End / / B&N / KOBO / The Book Depository / BAM

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date August 11, 2015

Tracker is everything I’ve ever wanted.

I see him. I’ve watched time change him.

I’ve been patient, but he still hasn’t noticed me. Not the way I want him to. The more time I spend with the MC, the more I understand.

When you want something, you have to take it. You have to fight for it.

And Tracker is more than worth fighting for…


REVIEW: TRACKER’S END is the third installment in Chantal Fernando’s adult, contemporary Wind Dragons erotic, romance MC series focusing on the men and women of the Wind Dragons MC. This is Tracker and Lana’s storyline. Lana is Anna’s (Arrow’s Hell) best friend, and Tracker is the MC ‘tracker’-if someone needs to be found, Tracker is the man to get the job done. Tracker’s End can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty but I recommend reading the series in order for backstory and cohesion.

Told from first person point of view (Lana) with a few chapters from Tracker’s POV, the storyline follows the building relationship between two people of opposite personality and responsibilities. Lana is hired as a nanny to look after Faye and Dex’s (Wind Dragons president) six year old daughter Clover, and Tracker is a biker whose history with women, and one woman in particular, rattles Lana’s proverbial nerves. Tracker has been attracted to Lana since the first day they met, one year earlier, but Lana isn’t about to jump into a relationship with a man whose sexual escapades could be the subject of many an erotic romance novel-in fact, Lana is an erotic romance novelist who keeps her true passion a secret from everyone but her mom. While Tracker slowly seduces the woman of his fantasies, Lana will become the target of jealousy and revenge.

The sexual attraction between Lana and Tracker is immediate, intense and not without some moments of jealousy and possessiveness. Lana’s sexual history is minimal compared to Tracker, and most of the other MC members, but Lana quickly succumbs to the needs of the man with whom she is falling in love. $ex scenes are erotic and intense.

Throughout the storyline we are witness to Tracker’s promises of fidelity; how his past is now his past, and Lana is the woman that calls to his heart. But a perceived betrayal by Lana finds Tracker quickly taking advantage of his current circumstance, and in this I had some issues with the double standard as it pertained to Lana and Tracker’s relationship. Tracker is an arrogant, alpha male who continues to focus on his own personal needs and wants, never considering how his actions will affect the woman that he loves.

Most of the previous storyline characters play secondary and supporting roles including Faye and Dex (Dragon’s Lair); Arrow and Anna (Arrow’s Hell); and several of the other MC members. We are introduced to Lana’s mother-a single parent and nurse who is totally accepting of her daughter’s choices in life. Allie returns as the resident Club whore but her prior relationship with Tracker will not only affect Lana but the Wind Dragon MC as well-not everyone will survive to see another story. Anna’s brother Rake will come face to face with his past-a past that wants nothing to do with revisiting heartbreak and broken promises.

TRACKER’S END takes another intimate look at the world of the MC; the lovers, the fighters, the rules and regulations; the breakdown of power and the penalty for disobedience and going rogue. There are moments of romance and love; betrayal and heartbreak; jealousy and revenge. The series will captivate your imagination; you will fall in love with the bikers and their old ladies; the romance is a promise for the future. No matter how tough the biker claims to be, in the end, it is the woman with whom he falls in love, that has to be the toughest of them all.

Copy supplied by the publisher through Netgalley.

Reviewed by Sandy

Series Spotlight Black and Gold


(Wind Dragons MC #1)
by Chantal Fernando
Release Date: May 19, 2014
Genre: adult, contemporary, erotic, romance, motorcycle club

Dragon's Lair

Click HERE for Sandy’s review of DRAGON’S LAIR / / B&N / KOBO / The Book Depository

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date May 19, 2014

When I found my boyfriend cheating on me, I did something stupid.

Or should I say, someone?

Because of that mistake, I’m now stuck in a world I don’t belong in.

I’m a law student. They’re criminals. He’s the vice president of a motorcycle club. I’m a good girl with a strict upbringing. He’s my ex-boyfriend’s brother.

And I’m screwed.


(Wind Dragons MC #2)
by Chantal Fernando
Release Date: June 16, 2015
Genre: adult, contemporary, erotic,romance, motorcycle club

Arrow's Hell / / B&N / KOBO / The Book Depository

Click  HERE for Sandy’s review of ARROW’S HELL

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date June 16, 2015

Being the younger sister of a Wind Dragons MC member isn’t as great as you’d think it would be.

I can’t escape the details of my brother’s exploits.

No one tells me anything.

Men who know who I am tend to stay away from me.

And worst of all:

The members of the MC are off-limits.

When Arrow catches my eye, I make it my mission to make him happy again.

When I fall head over heels in love with him, I just hope he will be there to catch me.

And that my brother doesn’t kill him.


TRC: Hi Chantal and welcome to The Reading Café. Congratulations on the success of your WIND DRAGONS MC series.

Chantel FernandoChantal: Thank you so much and thanks for having me!

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

Follow Chantal: Website/ Facebook/ Twitter/ Goodreads

Chantal: I’m 28 and live in a small town in Western Australia.

TRC: Who or what influenced your career in writing?

Chantal: I stopped reading in high school, and got back into it when I picked up my sister’s copy of Twilight. I fell back in love with reading and writing and haven’t looked back since.

Tracker's EndTRC: Would you please tell us something about your 2015 releases of TRACKER’S END and ARROW’S HELL, and the Wind Dragons series?

Chantal: All these books focus on the love stories between a member of the MC and their leading lady. I think Arrow and Anna have one of the hardest paths to each other, but Tracker and Lana also have their own problems to overcome before they get their happily ever afters.

TRC: How many books do you have planned for the series?

Chantal: Three so far… and maybe more 😉

TRC: If you could virtually cast the leading characters (so far), which actors or models would best represent your ideal image?

Chantal: I generally stay away from this, as I prefer readers to create their own image in their head, but Brock O’Hurn is definitely my Tracker.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties (research, logistics, MC lifestyle) did you encounter writing this particular story and series?

Chantal: I don’t like to write about cheating, even though it’s unrealistic for every member be 100% faithful to their women.

TRC: Do you have any further plans to continue your RESISTING LOVE series?

Chantal: No, I don’t. A few people have asked about the Morning Alliance books, which I may revisit, but I have a heap of books planned before that :)

Wind Dragon MCTRC: How do you keep the plot unpredictable without sacrificing content and believability?

Chantal: I start with a good, well thought out outline. I think that people in general are unpredictable, and my characters are the same, they take over the story, directing where it goes. I think it makes the characters more believable, because sometimes the direction the novel takes surprises even me.

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

Chantal: I think a pretty cover helps! But if the book is good, word of mouth will still make sure the book is picked up.

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

Chantal: The characters definitely direct my writing lol.

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

Chantal: I do listen to music while I write, unless I’m having trouble concentrating, then I need silence. With me, I don’t think music influences my storyline, I think I’m attracted to music that I can connect to a particular scene I’m writing, or the novel as a whole

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

Chantal: I’d like to travel the world and meet as many of my readers as I can.

Keep writing books that my readers enjoy.

Have more of my books available in store.

TRC: What is something that few, if any people, know about you?

Chantal: I’m super shy and terrible at public speaking!

TRC: On what are you currently working?

Chantal: I will be announcing this very soon! 😉


Favorite Food- Chicken parmigana

Favorite Dessert- Choc brownies and vanilla ice-cream

Favorite TV Show- Outlander

Last Movie You Saw- Inside Out

Dark or Milk Chocolate- Milk chocolate

Secret Celebrity Crush- Jason Momoa but that’s not really a secret.
Bruce Venture!

Last Vacation Destination- Scotland, England and Ireland.

Do you have any pets?- 3 dogs that I adore.

Last book you read- Jamie Begley- Lucky’s Choice

Pet Peeve- People who are late!

TRC: Thank you Chantal for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on the release of TRACKER’S END and ARROW’S HELL.

Chantal: Thank you so much!


Maps, Artifacts and Other Arcane Magic (Dowser 5) by Meghan Ciana Doidge-Review, Guest Post & Giveaway

MAPS, ARTIFACTS, AND OTHER ARCANE MAGIC by Meghan Ciana Doidge-Review, Guest Post and Giveaway

Maps Artifacts and Other Arcane Magic Banner

Maps, Artifacts, and Other Arcane Magic
Dowser Series #5
by Meghan Ciana Doidge
Genre: adult, paranormal
Release Date: July 23, 2015


About the book: Release Date July 23, 2015

One treasure down, two to go …

Three months ago, I nearly lost my best friend while retrieving the first instrument of assassination. I also inadvertently released a rival who was definitely unhinged, way more powerful than me, and obsessed with harnessing the deadly power of the artifacts I’d been tasked by the guardian dragons to collect.
Add a sexy sentinel and a nearly immortal vampire to the mix, and what could possibly go wrong?


Review: MAPS, ARTIFACTS AND OTHER ARCANE MAGIC is the 5th book in Meghan Ciana Doidge’s Dowser series. Wow, that title is a mouthful!! I will give you my favorite reason for reading this novel: Kett is back!!! *happy dance* Yes!! Our Ancient, nearly immortal vampire and self- appointed Mentor is back in the thick of the action! Jade loves her chocolate, but I love Kett’s peppermint infused presence!

Jade is off to find the second instrument of assassination. These are items that can kill a powerful Dragon, that’s why the guardians are using her to find and contain them. Jade is opening her eyes to the blatant discrimination or distrust against her at times, she is only a half dragon, but she is studying the map to find the next location. Someone else is obsessed with the deadly artifact and Jade’s powers and soon Jade is face to face with the young Dragon that she freed in the last novel, but this kid is not so kind or innocent, she is downright nasty and unhinged!! I love her nickname of the “Rabid Koala”! This new rival practically destroys the cupcake shop!

Jade, Warner and Kett decipher the location of the next artifact which leads them to San Francisco then Peru and the action begins. Without saying too much, this artifact is cleverly guarded in a silver mine, which nulls all magic and along with our Rabid Koala things get tense and exciting. Things are so action packed and exciting, but if I told you more details it would be like eating a cupcake with a bite out of it! You wouldn’t enjoy it as much!

Jade is full of her usually snark and good sense in shoes and chocolate, Kett is wonderful as always. He is prepared to die for Jade, does this hint at love? I’m sure that we will learn more and Warner, our wonderful Sentinel Dragon is loyal and at Jade’s side. This novel greatly advances the storyline of finding all the artifacts and Jade learns her greatest destiny at the end. I hope she is up for her new title!! Plus, there is some steam in this novel, poor Warner is a Dragon raised in earlier times and different morals. Don’t worry, Jade will give him quite an education. I hope you enjoy this latest installment of the Dowser Series! I sure did!!

Reviewed by Jules C

Copy supplied by author

Series Spotlight

Cupcakes, Trinkets, and Other Deadly Magic
Dowser Series #1
by Meghan Ciana Doidge
Release Date:June 18, 2013
Genre: adult, urban fantasy, witches, vampires


FREE ebook: / / Barnes and Noble / KOBO /

SONY DSCABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date June 18, 2013

If you’d asked me a week ago, I would have told you that the best cupcakes were dark chocolate with chocolate cream cheese icing, that dancing in a crowd of magic wielders — the Adept — was better than sex, and that my life was peaceful and uneventful. Just the way I liked it.

That’s what twenty-three years in the magical backwater of Vancouver will get you — a completely skewed sense of reality. Because when the dead werewolves started showing up, it all unraveled … except for the cupcake part. That’s a universal truth.


Trinkets, Treasures and Other Bloody Magic
The Dowser Series #2
by Meghan Ciana Doidge
Release Date: December 27, 2013

Click HERE for Jules’s review of TRINKETS, TREASURES AND OTHER BLOODY MAGIC. / / Barnes and Noble /

SONY DSCABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date: December 27, 2013

Three months ago, I lost my foster sister, Sienna, to the darkness. As in blood magic and chaos and general mayhem. No one saw it until it was too late, but I should have. Now, I have a wounded heart and soul that I can’t even reveal to anyone around me, because I’m supposed to hate Sienna with the fiery passion of the justified. And I do. I just wish I didn’t feel so lost without her, so unsure of the path I thought I had carved for myself, and so outclassed by the powerful Adepts constantly by my side these days. I’m not even sure if they’re with me for my own protection or because my shiny new powers are rare and valuable. Assuming I ever figure out who or what I am, and how my magic actually works.

Even chocolate can’t save the day every time … just most of the time. At least I’ve got that going for me.


Treasures, Demons, And Other Black Magic
Dowser Series #3
by Meghan Ciana Doidge
Release Date: June 11, 2014
Genre: adult, urban fantasy, vampires, witches / Barnes and Noble / KOBO /

Click HERE for Jules’s review of TREASURES, DEMONS and other BLACK MAGIC

SONY DSCABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date June 11, 2014

I hadn’t set foot in the human world for more than a few hours in over three and a half months. Sure, I was stronger and faster than I’d ever been before, and I had a shiny new sword, but I was seriously chocolate deprived. I don’t recommend quitting cold turkey. And the new sword was a problem — to my mind, anyway. It represented all the expectations of a powerful father and a new otherworldly life. A life that wasn’t the one I’d worked so hard to build. It also represented the responsibility I had to bring my foster sister Sienna to … what? Justice? I didn’t know if that was even possible. What I did know was that Sienna wouldn’t stop, and that I couldn’t just leave everything up to fate and destiny … or maybe I was. Maybe I was doing exactly what I was supposed to be doing. If you believed in that sort of thing.

I just hoped that before the chaos and mayhem renewed, I’d manage to get my hands on some chocolate. It didn’t even have to be single-origin Madagascar. I was utterly prepared to lower my standards.


Shadows, Maps and Other Ancient Magic
Dowser Series #4
by Meghan Ciana Doidge
Genre: adult, paranormal,
Release Date:February 26, 2015


shadows, maps and other ancient magicI had new cupcakes to bake, a new treasure to hunt, and a new dragon in town — literally. Who wouldn’t be ecstatic filling their days with chocolate, trinket collecting, and martial arts training?

Yeah … me.

Because no matter how much chocolate I ate, I couldn’t fill the dark pit in my soul. A darkness born from blood alchemy. A darkness that reeked of the black magic I now knew I was capable of creating.

Maybe it was time to walk away.

But what if there were important things left to do? What if I was the only one who could do what needed to be done?

I wasn’t sure I could handle the responsibility, but as long as I had my chocolate stash and a good friend to back me up, I was willing to give it a try.

Guest Post-Black and Blue




About The Author Black and Blue

Meghan Ciana DoidgeMeghan Ciana Doidge is an award-winning writer based out of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. She has a penchant for bloody love stories, superheroes, and the supernatural. She also has a thing for chocolate, potatoes, and sock yarn.

Novels – After The Virus, Spirit Binder, Time Walker, Cupcakes, Trinkets, and Other Deadly Magic – Dowser #1, Trinkets, Treasures, and Other Bloody Magic – Dowser #2, Treasures, Demons, and Other Black Magic – Dowser #3

Novellas/Shorts – Love Lies Bleeding and The Graveyard Kiss

WARNING: author has been known to manipulate characters with chocolate, sex, and fantastical plotting. Readers beware

Follow Meghan: Goodreads / Website / Facebook / Twitter


Meghan is offering a signed, papercopy of book 1-CUPCAKES, TRINKETS and other DEADLY MAGIC 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.

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8. Giveaway open INTERNATIONALLY.

9. Giveaway runs from August 7-11, 2015


Made for Us (The Shaughnessy Brothers #1) by Samantha Chase-Review, Interview and Giveaway

MADE FOR US (The Shaughnessy Brothers 1) by Samantha Chase-Review, Interview and Giveaway

Made For Us / / B&N / KOBO / The Book Depository / BAM

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date August 4,2015

The Shaughnessy brothers—Aidan in particular—have spent the years since their mother’s untimely death taking care of each other and trying to make their father proud. And Aidan has managed pretty well so far. But his father is starting to worry he’s neglected himself. At the age of thirty-four, he is successful and handsome, and he still has no grandchildren!

Aidan’s met plenty of attractive women over the years, but who has the time? It isn’t until he meets Zoe, a designer on one of his jobs, that he starts realizing he wants something more.


REVIEW: MADE FOR US is the first installment in Samantha Chase’s adult, contemporary THE SHAUGHNESSY BROTHERS romance series focusing on ….The Shaughnessy family. This is home builder/eldest brother Aidan Shaughnessy, and designer Zoe Dalton’s storyline.

Told from third person point of view MADE FOR US follows the building relationship between Shaughnessy Construction owner Aidan Shaughnessy and decorator Zoe Dalton. When the previous designer all but destroyed Aidan’s ideas and plans for his new series of homes, Zoe is tasked with correcting the problems and appeasing an irate Aidan in the process. What ensues is a relationship that finds Aidan at a loss as to what to do next. Sixteen years earlier, the Shaughnessy family lost their mother to a drunk driving accident and in the ensuing years Aidan has become a second father to his family of five younger siblings. Aidan is a man who doesn’t like change, and with Zoe’s presence in his life, change is happening at an all too rapid pace.

MADE FOR US focuses on Aidan’s need for control-almost OCD in dynamics-Aidan doesn’t like change or mistakes. When a hurricane catches Aidan and Zoe alone in a small one bedroom apartment, sparks fly, but Aidan’s ensuing guilt finds our storyline hero running away from a future that he refuses to accept or comprehend. In the process, Aidan will lose Zoe but not before further destroying any hope of reconciliation with the woman he loves. For all of his duties and responsibilities Aidan has a difficult time letting go and it is his anxiety that affects his relationships with family and friends.

We are introduced to all of the Shaughnessy siblings: youngest and only daughter Darcy; brothers Hugh, Quinn, Riley and Owen. Patriarch Ian Shaughnessy realizes he didn’t do his family any favors allowing Aidan to become a substitute father and in the end pushes his eldest son to live his own life and forget about the rest. The local sheriff has the potential for a romantic storyline as well.

The world building centers around the Shaughnessy family dynamics; their love, their support and their co-dependent relationship with eldest brother Aidan. Ian Shaughnessy is a widower who has struggled to raise six children as a single parent but in doing so ultimately became dependent upon Aidan for his help. There is the potential for a new love interest for Ian-let’s hope something comes to fruition.

MADE FOR US introduces the Shaughnessy family with the focus on Aidan and Zoe, as well as some tumultuous interaction between Darcy and her over-protective older brother. The premise is realistic and heartwarming; the characters are colorful, energetic and expressive; the road to a happily ever after finds our hero lost and in need of direction. There is plenty of angst, drama and disquiet right from the start.

Copy supplied by Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy


TRC: Hi Samantha and welcome to The Reading Cafe.

We would like to start with some background information. Please tell us something about yourself?

SamanthaChaseSamantha: Thank you so much for having me here today. I am an avid reader of contemporary romance – that’s one of the reasons I decided to write it. You can pretty much guarantee that you’re going to find me working on two or three books at a time while reading at least one. It’s a good thing my family is understanding!

TRC: MADE FOR US is the first release in your new Shaughnessy Brothers series. Would you please tell us something about the premise?

Samantha: What I love about this new series is how much family means to each of them. When Lillian Shaughnessy was killed, she left behind a husband and six children whose ages ranged from eighteen to ten months. And rather than this tragedy tearing them apart, it made them closer as they clung together to get through their grief. At the point that you’re going to be meeting them, seventeen years has gone by and we see how the loss of their mother still affects who they currently are.

MADE FOR US introduces us to eldest son Aidan. He pretty much took on the task of taking care of his siblings and is the one they all turn to. He’s got a construction business that pretty much takes up most of his time but he’s stayed close to home. When he meets Zoe Dalton – she’s the new designer on his job site – he begins to realize how much he hasn’t been living his life for himself. While Zoe – who is new to the area – is starting her life over after losing her mom to breast cancer.

So really, they’re two people who are at a crossroad in their lives and happen to find each other.

TRC: How many books do you have planned for the series?

Samantha: There will be six books – one for each sibling.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties (research, logistics,) did you encounter writing this particular story?

Made For UsSamantha: I think this story was probably the most REAL story – emotion-wise – that I’ve ever written. I am lucky in that I still have both of my parents, so I really had to explore how it would feel if that weren’t the case. Sometimes in a story, it’s mentioned that one or both parents are gone, but you don’t really look into how that loss can still affect you years later. I cried a lot while I was writing – and then remembered to call my parents and tell them I loved them!

TRC: How do you keep the plot unpredictable without sacrificing content and believability?

Samantha: That is never easy to do. It’s hard to come up with something new and different for exactly what you’re asking – and keeping it believable. Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, you do end up with a predictable plot. The only way to mix it up is – to me – by keeping the dialogue fresh. I love some good dialogue!

For this story, Aidan and Zoe get stranded together during a hurricane. Yes, stuck in a storm together has been done a million times. However, it’s what happens between the two of them during that time – the things that they say and do that aren’t all about the bedroom – is what keeps things fresh. That, coupled with thinking about your actual life and keeping yourself grounded to that and not being outlandish helps.

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?

Samantha: Absolutely! I know that for myself as a reader, the cover plays a huge part in my decision to purchase a book or not, but it’s not the only factor. I know there are certain authors whose books I’ll read without looking at the cover at all – I just love their work and the cover isn’t an issue. If the premise and plot sound interesting, I’ll give it a try. Hopefully other readers feel that way too.


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

Samantha: People think I’m crazy when I say it, but it is primarily the characters directing me. I can plot out a book and then find it going in a completely different direction as I’m writing it because my characters are taking me in a direction I never even thought about. I love when that happens!

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

Samantha: Thank you so much for having me to The Reading Café today! This was great!

TRC: Thank you Samantha for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on the new release and new series.

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Coming Home to Mustang Ridge by Jesse Hayworth – Review, Interview & Giveaway

Coming Home to Mustang Ridge by Jesse Hayworth – Review, Interview & Giveaway


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Coming Home to Mustang Ridge
Mustang Ridge series – Book #5
by Jesse HayworthRelease Date: August 4, 2015

Coming Home to Mustang RidgeAmazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / BAM / The Book Depository

After putting all her savings—and then some—into purchasing a vintage clothing shop in downtown Three Ridges, Wyoming, Ashley Webb is determined to succeed come hell or high water. Problem is, she’s never been good at long-term commitments.  And when Ashley crosses paths again with the incredibly sexy cowboy she got cozy with at her brother’s wedding, she can’t help being distracted.

Tyler Reed isn’t looking to settle down—he tried that before and got burned. Not to mention that the new head wrangler at Mustang Ridge Dude Ranch has other things on his mind. Things that are far more important than helping out his boss’s pretty—but flaky—sister…even though there’s some serious chemistry between them. When Ashley turns out to be very different than he expected, he’s tempted to go against his better judgment. What’s a cowboy to do when the wrong woman lassoes his heart?




Coming Home to Mustang Ridge by Jesse Hayworth is the 5th book in her wonderful Mustang Ridge series. I enjoy anything written by Jesse Hayworth/Jessica Andersen, as I have loved her two series (Mustang Ridge & The Nightkeepers). Mustang Ridge is such a fun and delightful series about the Skye family and their ranch.

In Coming Home to Mustang Ridge, Ashley is our heroine and is Wyatt’s sister. Right from the start I loved Ashley, and it was so great to see the friendship between her and the heroines of the previous books….Krista, Jenny, Shelby, Danny. Of course, I also adored our hero, Tyler Reed, who has come back to Mustang Ridge to work for Krista. Tyler is also a musician, and when he was last at Mustang Ridge, attending the wedding of Krista and Wyatt, he had a one night stand with one of the bridesmaids, whom he has not forgotten.

When Tyler sees Ashley with her friends at the bar, where he is singing, he recognized her as the girl he has not forgotten. When he meets up with Ashley outside, he is shocked to learn she is Wyatt’s sister, and he backs away, as Wyatt is his friend and technically his boss. Ashley agrees, and tells him to keep that one night a secret.

Easier said than done, as Ashley has just bought the store she has worked in, and was determined to make it a success. There are financial aspects which must be met, and Ashley gets the help of her friends to have events to bring in people. Tyler is forced to help with supplies, equipment that the Skye family offers to Ashley, and they both find themselves becoming closer and closer, as they learn more about each other. The chemistry between them both was hot, and I totally rooted for them to be able to overcome some obstacles that threatened to keep them as friends with benefits.

I love the family background of this series, the Skye family members, the wonderful friendships, and all the regulars we have come to love continue to play big parts in the stories. I will say that in this book, I was not a fan of Wyatt, as I thought he was too unbending towards Ashley, and even Tyler, though I knew it was because he loved and worried about her. Still, I did not like him as much as I did in the previous book.   Kudos to Jesse Hayworth for continually giving us wonderful, fun and sexy romances in Mustang Ridge, and forcing us to always go back home to this fabulous family and ranch. If you have not started this series, I suggest you do so, and start with Summer at Mustang Ridge.

Reviewed by Barb

Copy provided by Publisher




Hi Jesse. Thank you for taking the time to revisit us at The Reading Cafe, to discuss your new release “Coming Home to Mustang Ridge”, as well as to give us an update as to what you have in store for us next.

Jesse: Thank you so much for having me back! I always love hanging out at the café with a cup of tea (maybe a glass of wine, depending) and something sweet to nibble on while we chat about hunky cowboys, sassy cowgirls and sweet Wyoming sunsets!

TRC: For those who are new to your series, can you please tell us the premise of the Mustang Ridge series?

Jesse:  Mustang Ridge is a long-time cattle ranch that spitfire cowgirl Krista Skye convinced her parents and grandparents to help her convert into a high-end guest ranch, complete with a chuck wagon, overnight trail rides, and theme weeks—everything from Singles Week to Reunion Week. Take the men and women who live and work on the ranch, add in a new crop of guests each week, and top it all with the residents of nearby Three Ridges, Wyoming, with its spunky mayor and Wild West persona, and you’ve got a whole lot of lives and loves to read about!

Coming Home to Mustang RidgeTRC:  Would you please give us a brief description of Coming Home to Mustang Ridge?

Jesse: Have you ever had a wedding hookup that was super fun at the time, but got complicated after the fact? That’s what happens to Ashley when she gets friendly with the super-sexy country guitarist at her brother’s wedding at posh Mustang Ridge Dude Ranch, only to have him turn up more than a year later as the ranch’s new head wrangler. She’s determined to make her new business venture a success, and he’s got a quest he’s put off far too long, but when they’re thrown back together, sparks fly!


Starting over at Mustang ridgeTRC:  Last month you released a novella, Starting Over at Mustang Ridge. I always enjoy spending time with the Skye family in each of your books. Krista, Jenny and Shelby are so much fun with your newest heroines. How many more books do you anticipate for the Mustang Ridge series?

Jesse:  Thank you so much for loving them! That means a ton to me, especially on the hard days when the words just won’t get out of my head and onto the page exactly right … As for future books, I definitely plan on returning to Mustang Ridge! I would love to do a holiday novella and go from there. Stay tuned (and sign up for my newsletter) for what’s next.

TRC:  Have you any thoughts of returning to the Paranormal genre or another genre, and writing again as Jessica Andersen?

Jesse:  Most definitely! I think my first stop as Jessica Andersen will be a new medical romantic suspense series. It’s in the works, release dates TBD. At some point, I will also return to paranormal romance. I’d love to do another Nightkeeper book, and I have a new series nudging at the back of my brain.

TRC: This is awesome news. 

TRC:  Would you like to share with us what you are currently working on, and what you have in store for us in 2015/2016?

Jesse:  See the next question, please. LOL!

TRC:  How has the birth of your son, Wallaby (online name) changed your writing habits? Do you have specific times and places to write? I love your stories on your blog about Wallaby and Arizona.

Jesse:  Awww, thanks. Becoming a mom after all this time (and through lots of heartache as we fought the issues that come with deciding to start a family after forty …) has definitely changed things for me in a whole lot of ways. It’s all for the better, but I sure don’t have the luxury of locking myself in my writing cave for hours on end anymore! Arizona—who is a rockstar as a daddy—gets up with the little one in the morning, giving me a couple of hours of uninterrupted writing time.

We’ve been doing that about a month now, and I’m starting to find my writing groove again. But I’ll confess that I haven’t had the most productive 2014/15, as far as writing goes, which means I don’t have any firm release dates I can share with you right now … but stay tuned. I’m writing and loving it!

TRC:  Would you like to add anything else?

Jesse: I’d like to give a shout out to my pet nonprofit, Beech Brook Farm Equine Rescue. ( I started volunteering at BBFER so I would have something to do other than fret about getting (and staying) pregnant, and while it may not have saved my life, it definitely saved my sanity and made me much easier for Arizona to live with.

Being hands-on with formerly abused and neglected horses, miniature horses, donkeys and mini-donks as they’re being rehabilitated and adopted into new homes … it’s a really special thing, as are the outreach programs targeting at-risk youth and differently abled adults. I’ve learned far more than I expected to through volunteering, and these days, little Wallaby does chores right along with me!

TRC:  That’s one picture you will need to share on your blog….Wallaby doing the chores with you.  :)

TRC: Thank you, Jesse for visiting us again to talk about your new release. We wish you good luck with Coming Home to Mustang Ridge.

 Jesse:  Thank you so much for having me! It’s always a pleasure to kick back in the café and talk about the books we love :)





Jesse and her publisher are offering a paper copy of Coming Home to Mustang Ridge  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.

2. If you are using a social log-in, please post your email address with your comment.

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

4. LIKE us on Twitter for an additional entry.

5. Like Jessica Andersen/Jesse Hayworth on Facebook for an additional entry.

6. Giveaway is open to USA only.

7. Giveaway runs from August 3 – August 6, 2015


Primal Heat (The Shadow Shifters 6) by A.C. Arthur-Review and Interview with the Author

PRIMAL HEAT (The Shadow Shifters #6) by A.C. Arthur-Review and Interview with the Author

Primal Heat / / B&N / KOBO / The Book Depository / BAM

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date August 4, 2015

In the savage world of the Shadow Shifters, desire can be as dangerous as nature itself…

As guard to the most powerful shifter in the human world, Eli Preston is sworn to protect his leader, defend their alliance, and keep his darker instincts in check. But when a beautiful female trainee arouses his jaguar senses, there is no stopping the beast within. He must have her. Even if it jeopardizes the deadliest mission of his life…

When the heat is on—and the claws come out—the heart is the fiercest hunter…

For six years, Nivea has been waiting for Eli to take her in his arms, unleash his animal urges, and claim her as his mate. But once their passion is unleashed—in a reckless moment of pure unbridled lust—nothing can ever be the same. The battle lines are drawn: man versus animal, shifter versus shifter. And Eli must be prepared to fight for his life—and his love—or he will lose Nivea forever…


REVIEW: PRIMAL HEAT is the sixth full length installment in A.C. Arthur’s adult, contemporary SHADOW SHIFTERS paranormal romance series focusing on a breed of feline shifters known as The Shadow Shifters. This is Guardians Eli Preston and Nivea Cannon’s storyline. Because of the developing storyline throughout the series I would suggest new readers to the series start at the beginning for cohesion, history and back story.

Told from several third person perspectives PRIMAL HEAT continues to focus on hunt for the person(s) responsible for threatening to ‘out’ the shifters to the human race. The Shadow Shifters have long hid their supernatural existence; blending into the communities and societies of man but a new species of hybrid is threatening to destroy the peaceful co-existence between man and beast. What ensues is an act of retaliation and revenge against the Shifters by several of their own kind.

Meanwhile, Nivea has known that Eli Preston is her mate but Eli’s history in the jungles of Sierra Leone have left Eli distant, cold and withdrawn. He is a Shadow Shifter Guardian who has come into a secondary power but with it comes memories and the guilt of a time not so long ago. Taking a mate is the last thing Eli wants or needs but it is the touch of a mate that will calm the beast within.

Nivea is a strong, alpha female who isn’t afraid to let Eli know what it is she wants from her mate but Eli continues to refuse to claim the woman that calms his soul. When Nivea’s life is threatened time and again, Eli can’t stop the need to protect and claim the woman with whom he is falling in love. The $ex scenes are intimate, sometimes aggressive, and provocative.

PRIMAL HEAT and thusly the SHADOW SHIFTERS series is an ensemble story with all of the previous storyline couples and characters in secondary and supporting roles. In fact, PRIMAL HEAL follows several developing and existing premises that intersect throughout the story and series.

The world building continues to focus on the Shadow Shifters: their history; their mating; and their struggles to survive. Now that their existence has been revealed their future battles will find them facing off against a different enemy-one that has already started to pass judgment in the face of the unknown.

PRIMAL HEAT is an engaging and character driven storyline with action, suspense, and some disturbing scenarios. The Shadow Shifters face an uncertain future-one filled with the potential for specieism, discrimination, prejudice and the possibility of a disaster on par with ethnic cleansing. Shifters are no longer safe in the world of man; everyone has been targeted now that their secret has been revealed. A.C. Arthur has written a passionate storyline with an all-too familiar historical formula.

Copy supplied by the publisher through Netgalley

Reviewed by Sandy

Interview yellow:black

TRC: Hi AC, and welcome to The Reading Cafe. We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?

Follow AC: Goodreads /Website/ Facebook /Twitter /

AC ArthurAC: I am a full-time paralegal working for a federal judge, a mother of three, and a wife.

TRC: Who or what influenced your career in writing?

AC: I’ve been reading since the early days of Sweet Valley High and Judy Blume’s Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. I graduated into adult books with Danielle Steele’s Star. During my sophomore year of high school I won a writing contest and from that moment I figured why not write stories and see if others enjoy them.

TRC: PRIMAL HEAT is your August 2015 release in The Shadow Shifters paranormal, romance series. Would you please tell us something about the premise?

AC: Primal Heat is book #6 in the Shadow Shifters series. It brings to a culmination a war that has been brewing between the Shadow Shifters (a group of feline shapeshifters that originated in the Amazon rainforest) and the Rogues (a renegade group of Shadow Shifters). This is also the story of Eli and Nivea, two guards in the shifter world who are sworn to protect their secret. They’re also falling in love, despite Eli’s resistance. It’s a passionate and action-packed love story.

TRC: What challenges or difficulties (research, logistics) did you encounter writing this particular story?

AC: Not really so much as challenging, but I did take a trip to the Gaylord Hotel in National Harbor since the big fight scene takes place there. I also continued with the research I’d done for the previous books into the various big cats of the world—jaguars, cheetahs, white lions, white tigers, cougars—as they all play a part in this last story.

Primal HeatTRC: How many books do you have planned for the series? Have you considered writing any novellas to ‘catch up’ with some of the previous storyline couple?

AC: There are currently 6 full length books in this series and three novellas (which give a look into the new adults of the shifter world). I would love to continue writing books in this series, but I’m not sure if that will happen just yet.

TRC: How do you keep the plot unpredictable without sacrificing content and believability?

AC: I think that depends on the characters. When I begin writing I have an idea of where the plot is going and how it will all pan out, but the characters’ actions throughout the story sometimes changes things up a bit. For me, that makes the writing itself unpredictable and hopefully does the same for the readers.

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?

AC: Yes, absolutely. I believe this because as a reader myself, I’m always drawn to the covers first. They’re like a commercial on the shelf for me. I see something pretty or alluring and I immediately want to know what that book is about.

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

AC: I outline each book before I begin writing so that I can clearly see my characters’ conflicts, sexual tension and resolution as it will roll out over the course of the book. But again, once I start writing the characters’ personalities really take the lead and while I have a basic road map for them, I tend to let them drive for the most part.

TRC: The mark of a good writer is to pull the reader into the storyline 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 writer’s fail in this endeavor?

AC: I think as a writer you have to know these characters as well as you know yourself. If you know them, you will feel what they feel. If you feel what they feel, you’ll be able to convey that on paper and when the reader reads the story they’ll feel it too. It’s very easy to write words, but if you’re not feeling them, they’re just words.

Writing an emotionally charged book can be difficult if the writer isn’t open to these same emotions themselves. We have to believe and feel everything we’ve written if we expect the reader to.

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

AC: Yes! I love listening to music while I write. For the fight scenes in this series I listened to lots of Imagine Dragons and Maroon 5. For the love scenes it was Trey Songz and Justin Timberlake. If you listen to Spotify I have playlists titled ‘Shadow Inspirations’ and ‘Shadow Shifter: Damaged Hearts’.

I like watching movie trailers, so when I listen to music while I write it really helps me to see the scene in my mind and sometimes the song lyrics influence the character’s feelings and actions.

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

AC: I don’t even have three things. I just try to take one day at a time. That goes for each book I write, just one at a time and whatever happens does. I believe that whatever accomplishments are meant for me, I will have without focusing too much attention on reaching them.

TRC: Have you collaborated with any other authors/writers? If not, have you considered such an enterprise?

AC: No, I have not. I’ve been asked this question a lot and to be truthful that’s the only time that I actually think about it. LOL

TRC: Many authors bounce ideas and information with other authors or friends and family. With whom do you bounce ideas?

AC: My family. I have a twenty-three year old son, a twenty-one year old daughter, a fifteen year old daughter and my husband. So I feel like I have a good range of opinions for whatever type of story I’m writing. They’re usually pretty good at telling me what’s ridiculous and what has potential.

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

AC: That we’re rich! LOL I was just talking about that at my reader appreciation event. There’s a big misconception about how much money authors really make from their books.

TRC: What is something that few, if any people, know about you?

AC: That I would much rather watch old movies than anything current.

TRC: On what are you currently working?

AC: I’m working on a new series titled Wolf Tales and yes, you guessed it, they’re wolf shifters! This will be an even sexier series than the Shadow Shifters, focusing on the psyche of the shifters and what it takes for each of them to really give in to love.

TRC: Would you like to add anything else?

AC: Thank you so much for this opportunity!


Favorite Food

Favorite Dessert
Carrot Cake

Favorite TV Show
I Love Lucy

Last Movie You Saw
Jurassic World

Dark or Milk Chocolate

Secret Celebrity Crush
Morris Chestnut

Last Vacation Destination
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Do you have any pets?
5 angelfish – one that looks just like Gil from Finding Nemo

Last book you read
I re-read books all the time, so the book I just finished for the billionth time was Carolina Moon by Nora Roberts.

Pet Peeve
Pointing.I hate when people point at me, for any reason. I just don’t like it at all!

TRC: Thank you AC for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on all of your success.