Danielle's Reviews

~ REVIEW: True North by Kelly Collins ~

23430890SynopsisAlexa leaves Los Angeles with a scarred heart, a beat-up car, and a secret. The legal system has failed her. Her family has abandoned her. She’s fleeing her hopelessness.

Zane already has more responsibilities than most, but when he finds a broken, but beautiful woman stranded on the side of the road, he rescues her. Picking up the pieces is what he does best.

Forced to work at Zane’s bar, Alexa watches suspiciously as young girls frequent Zane’s quarters. Surely he can’t be paying them for sex?

One night, Alexa finds out just how little she knows about her enigmatic and sexy boss. The last thing she expects to find reawakens heartache and guilt beyond imagination.

When Zane’s ex shows up unexpectedly, Alexa is determined to fight for him. For them. However, in order to fight, she has to reveal her past, and in doing so she could lose everything, again.

When you’ve lost your direction, trust your heart. It’s a good compass to follow when you’re looking for love.

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daniell review4 and a half stars

Alexa needs a fresh start in life. After living a lie for 4 years, she is finally free of her abusive ex-husband. Her family is hardly speaking to her, so she decides to just head out on the road, in a piece of crap car, to a destination to be determined. However, her car breaks down in the sweltering heat in the middle of nowhere.

Zane is a hot, sexy bar and grill owner in a small town called Sugar Glen. He has a lot of responsibilities and is having a hard time juggling everything. Little does he know, things are going to get better soon.

Zane rescues Alexa from her car trouble and gives her a lift to the motel across the street from his bar. When she stops by for some food, he’s in need of a waitress and tells Alexa she owes him and she agrees. Even with Zane’s gruff attitude, Alexa is attracted to him and is surprised to learn the feeling is mutual. And when Alexa comes to Zane’s rescue a few days later, a stronger bond is formed.
Zane asks Alexa to stick around and give him and Sugar Glen a chance. Alexa agrees to stay for a while and see how things go. Will Alexa decide she has found her new start in Sugar Glen? Or will she decide it’s too risky to put her heart on the line again?

What a sweet story! I loved both main characters and their banter is so entertaining! Alexa had a bit of a quirky personality that made her endearing. After Alexa had such heartbreak, it was wonderful to see her treated so well by Zane. I fell in love with him, too! Definitely enjoyed the sexy, steamy sex scenes as well!! This book didn’t have a lot of angst, which made it a great, easy read!

Abou the authorKelly Collins is the author of Contemporary Romance Novels with her first published book being Tempo. She is in love with the idea of love. She has been married to her husband for 24 years and has three wonderful children. She is crazy about hockey and lemon drop martini’s and stops for anything that’s shiny.

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~ DRAMA QUEENS:CALL OFF YOUR DOGS by L.U. ANN Release Blitz + Giveaway ~

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Title: Drama Queens: Call Off Your Dogs

Author: L.U. Ann

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: November 17, 2014

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Synopsis

Gertie knows she doesn’t have a picture perfect life, but feels blessed with what she does have. So what if love left her heart shattered and broken? She has a great job at Simple Luxury, an apartment in Houston with her sister, Mabel, and an outspoken, no-filter, church-going Gram back in Eufaula, Oklahoma where she was raised after her parents died.

Things are going well for Gertie until the man who broke her heart shows up in Houston. Tyler knew he had made the biggest mistake of his life the night he lost Gertie, but now he is back to reclaim the woman who owns his heart. It won’t be easy though, but he is going to have to make Gertie accept the life he has now and want to be part of it. As the owner of a successful construction company, he is devoted to making Eufaula the place Gertie will want to return and to forgive him for his mistakes.

With Gram being so outspoken in her column Drama Mama in the Eufaula’s Daily Indian Journal, she doesn’t hold back with her opinions about books and the nonsense drama among authors in the book world. Gram isn’t afraid to give her opinion to Mabel and Gertie when it comes to life, either.

Will events out of their control change their future plans for everyone involved?

By the way, the dog on the cover is named Cujo. What is a small town full of secrets and gossip without a dog named Cujo?

 

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Excerpt

Prologue

“Thank God, I was let out of this dirty cage today. I seriously needed a break from listening to those humans cackling about this and that. I sure will miss my tail wagging friends. This human is questionable. His bright yellow pants and pink shirt are giving me a headache. Dear God, please don’t let him dress me up. Wait… Oh, no, I think I’m going to be carsick!”

~ Cujo

2008

“Gram, that seems a little risqué to me,” Mabel says handing me the rough draft of Grams weekly column. “I wonder what the people at your church think.” Mabel raises an eyebrow at Gram.

“Darling, you have to live a little. Don’t limit yourself to society’s rules. Lord knows those rules are violated every day. I’m only doing it underhandedly. And, for the love of God, don’t bring him into this. He and I have worked out an arrangement.” Gram bats her lashes. How can an old woman be conniving yet look innocent at the same time?

Damn she’s good.

I begin to read the rough draft of this week’s column post:

Sunday, July 19, 2008

Drama Queens: Call Off Your Dogs

Citizens of Eufaula, Drama Mama here, and I’m going to tell you two chewable, delicious, bone-worthy reads releasing this week.

Trenda Jacobson’s Wronged is projected to jump to the top of the charts quickly. Trenda brings in Alan Bird—a quiet man who had very few friends growing up. Not because others didn’t like him. No, he was a loner. This behavior kept him away from the real world. With little interaction with the outside world as an adult and an experimental scientist, he found his joy in pain. Not his pain, but others. The FBI has been hunting Alan for years—almost a decade—before they discover his underground lab. When the violent acts are uncovered, will the FBI agents be able to find Alan, and most importantly, will they be able to escape being next in line?

This next one is going to be a must-read. Deliberate Intentions by Renee Gilbert is best described as a modern day Romeo and Juliet—only worse. The two main characters, Mike and Lauren, are high school sweethearts. Mike is two years older, goes to a local community college so that he can stay close to his girlfriend. He makes sacrifice after sacrifice to stay with her. Problem is, she doesn’t. Lauren is brilliantly manipulating Mike as her puppet. This story looks at the problems with young-dumb love and how two teens practically escape a bright future because they are in too much of a rush to get married. Lauren does something very sneaky to seal the deal—something that has great consequences for both of them. Will they get the love and support from their families when everything becomes clear? This one is sure to touch readers of many generations.

Quickly, I would like to take a moment to thank my readers for their support and enjoyment of this unconventional column. This marks my fifty-second column as Drama Mama. For one year, I’ve created quite a stir in the reader, author, and in the publishing world—and I’ve enjoyed every bit of it. I appreciate all the comments and can’t wait to see what we discover over the next fifty-two posts.

Okay, now that we’ve gotten all that out of the way. Let’s get onto the good stuff. People who you interact with on a regular basis can be compared to dogs. You know you have thought about it before. It can be a co-worker, friend, or possibly, a family member. Either way, canine behavior isn’t exclusive to its kind. Take for instance Chihuahuas. They are small and look so innocent, but the moment you piss them off, they are attacking the leg of your pants or hiking their leg on your furniture to show you who the real boss is.

These are the true bullies of the world. Why? Because the moment you stop cuddling with your pocket pet, they turn on you. Let’s have a look at the monstrous Pit bull. Their big, muscular frame has many scared to death of them. They were born with strong jaws that match their strong bodies. But guess what? They aren’t going to turn on you like those little Mexican things. No, they will lick you to death and play for hours. So, when I’m looking for someone to be in my corner, I’d rather have the one that looks vicious on the outside, but has a heart of gold as opposed to the one that looks cute and cuddly, but can turn into a biting piranha at any moment.

So there you have it. Drama Mama’s paw print. Until next week, keep your eyes open for those ankle biters and thanks for reading Drama Queens: Call Off Your Dogs.

“Gram, I’m going to college so that I can, hopefully, become a great writer and editor, but I can tell you now, I won’t be writing stuff like this. You must’ve been born with a set of balls,” I manage to say in all seriousness before looking at Mabel and we fall into a fit of giggles.

“Gertie, you will find people in this industry who are precisely like the dogs I described. It’s best you toughen up. You will encounter some who are nice to your face, become a best friend, but will talk about you behind your back and make you sound crazy. All the while, they are the crazy ones to start with. I’m trying to teach you how to cope with these Chihuahuas of the world. Your best bet is to find a Pit bull.”

My eyebrows furrow in confusion. Are people really like that?

“Sweetheart, you’re young and dumb.” My eyes grow at her harshness. “Oh, please, you know it as well. You need to go out and experience the world. Just watch out for needless drama and the back-stabbing bitches of the industry. I mean, come on, really? No one does drama like me.” Gram smiles before walking out of the room.

“We’re related to that?” Mabel whispers, watching Grams retreating form. Slowly raising my shoulders in a shrug, we glance at one another suspiciously before returning our eyes to the doorway Gram had just walked through.

“That woman is crazy,” I claim.

“No doubt,” Mabel agrees.

Abou the author

L.U.  Ann

She lives in Colorado with her husband and two children. Moving from the lush landscapes of Maryland’s Eastern Shore to the high desert plains of Colorado was a drastic change. She and her family moved to their own “Little House on the Prairie” at an elevation of over 6,000 feet above sea level, and a semi-arid climate that makes it hard to grow anything. While barely anything can grow where she resides now, the wildlife makes up for it. Mountain Lions, and coyotes, and rattlesnakes, oh my!

She tries to spend a little time each day writing, but domestic chores around the house usually take precedence. She would much rather hide them from her husband. She tends to her loving four-legged children who at times become much too demanding when she locks herself in the office. This often results in MORE domestic work, and she finds herself cleaning up after their deviant behavior.

She has always been an artist painting as a hobby to back drops in theatrical set designs. Graphic design is her guilty pleasure.

A Destructive Novel is a series of three books based on her life. They deal with heavy life issues and will have the reader begging for a happily ever after.

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~ EYE OF THE STORMS By Lisa Gillis Release Blitz + Giveaway ~

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Title: Eye Of The Storms

Author: Lisa Gillis

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: November 17, 2014

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Synopsis

Is the cure for a breakup a hookup?

Marissa Duplei has one mission. Pick herself up, dust the ex off, and get dirty with someone else. However, sexy, inked-up, metal-musician Jack Storm is not the average girl’s revenge fling.

A tour bus bang.
A one night stand gone awry.
A secret to keep at all costs.

Could it all lead to love?

♪♫ Marissa ♫♪

Looking back, everything about that day was a perfect storm.

My bestfriend’s score of two VIP passes the day before the Hang Fest. A giant hurricane with a generous shot of alcohol. A sexy metal musician who was opposite of my cheating fiancé in every way.

The inked up muscled arms holding a tiny puppy protectively to his bare chest told me there was more to him than met the eye.

I had to know more.

I’ve always been practical. I know I wouldn’t have seen him again if I hadn’t rolled out of bed and stepped into the shower.
♪♫ Jack ♫♪

That’s true. A Perfect Storm.

There was the puppy my sister forced on me as an exercise in commitment.

And for damn sure, the cutoff shorts and tight sleeveless top she was wearing that day. The tan line well past the very short hem and way above the very low neckline of her tank top told me the packaging on this girl was deceptive.

I had to know more.
Much more.

It likely would have ended like every other hookup in that tour bus—if I hadn’t followed her into the shower afterward.

♪♫♫♪

That shower was the beginning of us.

The point where we became more than a chance possibility. The part never told in countless interviews.

I’m Marissa, and Jack may jump in. Here’s our story…

Author’s note

Eye of the Storms is the first POV, Spicy Hot, Original Edition of Marissa and Jack’s story as written three years ago.

The 3rd POV Clean version was never acceptable to those who first loved Jack and Marissa as told in her voice and his—those who encouraged the story to be published and spent hours beta reading and making suggestions.

I love you guys, you are my rock stars. So here a year later, is the Anniversary Edition, aka the Original, Hot, First POV edition of Jack and Marissa.

Purchase Links

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Excerpt

Taking my glass, he thrust both drinks aside, and his palms came to rest on my hips to pull me close. The hand snaking so familiarly under my shirt was cold from holding his drink, but it quickly warmed against the heat of my skin. Greedily, I couldn’t get enough of his kiss, and I found myself practically hanging on him in an effort to get even closer.

His hand splayed on my back, smashing our bodies together. Phase two was all downhill from here, or rather down the hall. As I thought of my bedroom, some sanity returned. Five years ago, we had hooked up for the sake of hooking up. And tonight? Tonight I had phased sex into some devious plan. A plan that, not for the first time, felt weird and wrong.

“Jack?” I wedged a hand between us, and when he pulled back enough to warm my face with his inquiring gaze, I pulled in a fortifying breath. “You’re not seeing anyone?”

A myriad of emotions crossed his face, and one seemed to be annoyance. “I thought we just cleared this?”

An awkward silence stretched, and he still seemed exasperated with this line of questioning or maybe with the interruption.

And so I joked, “I’ve heard about rock stars. A woman in every city! I just don’t want to be your gulf coast girl.”

“What are you asking, Marissa?”

Oh hell… What was I asking? Was I trying to define our relationship, right here, right now? Because what faster way to scare away someone like him? I was an idiot!

“I’m not asking anything,” I tried to salvage a shred of humility. “I just don’t want to go where this is going if you have a girlfriend. It’s wrong.”

Picking up his glass, he drained it. I had definitely killed the mood, and I was regretting it now. I was about to drink to my own stupidity when he dropped to my level again, speaking against my lips.

“I’m not seeing anyone. No woman in any city. No one.” His lips brushed mine as he spoke, and his gaze sank into my eyes. “Is there anything else you need to clear up in this kitchen before we move to the bedroom and fuck like it’s been five years since?”

Hypnotized by his words, and heated with his look, I could only shake my head in one small chin movement.

“Anything you want me to sign?” He pressed, as he pressed a kiss to my mouth, and when I smiled at the humor, he did too.

A touch of our tongues had us heating up fast, and within seconds, the past minutes fell away as if I had never cock-blocked myself.

Abou the author

LisaGillis

Lisa Gillis resides in Texas, with her husband who is the inspiration to her fictional men, her son who is the light of her world, and a spoiled chocolate lab, Bailey.

Writing is a recent passion and she strives in her books to blend a perfect mixture of fantasy and reality.

Her love for music, bands, and concerts inspired her Six Silver Strings Series.

When she is not writing those little voices out of her head while listening to music, she’s making her own noise on drums or guitar.

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~ True Blue by Jules Barnard Release Blitz + Giveaway ~

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True Blue
by Jules Barnard
The Blue Series, #3
Publication Date: November 17, 2014
Genres: New Adult, Romance

Tour: True Blue by Jules Barnard

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Synopsis

Mira Frasier has worked hard to pull herself out of the darkness of her Tahoe reservation childhood, but rough beginnings shape a person in all the wrong ways. Mira gets mixed up with shady people while trying to bail out her destitute mother—and now Mira’s life is in danger.

Tyler Morgan grew up a star athlete and scholar, but a tragedy he hasn’t dealt with has him regrouping in his home town of South Lake Tahoe. The last person he expects to see is Mira, the girl he lost his virginity to in high school, and the only woman who ever took a piece of his heart. He’d rather live in a tent than do what his sister asks and stay with Mira while they figure out how to keep her safe from the men who attacked her.

To ensure Mira remains in his past where she belongs, Tyler agrees to look out for her temporarily until she’s safe enough to move out on her own. And if he has to push that process along by snooping around and figuring out what she’s hiding, he’ll do that too. Only, Mira is still beautiful, and she’s feisty as hell, and she has all his attention—just like she did six years before.

Mira is driving Tyler crazy, the tension between them off the charts while they’re trapped under the same roof. Something is going to crack. Will it be Mira’s last hold on a haunted life, or Tyler’s self-control around the one girl he’s never been able to get over?

Add to GoodreadsPurchase LinksDeep Blue, The Blue Series #1 (FREE)

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Blue Crush, The Blue Series #2

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True Blue, The Blue Series #3 

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Abou the author

JulesBarnard_edited-265x300

Jules Barnard is originally from the San Francisco Bay Area. She attended UC Davis, whose college landscape often finds its way into her New Adult novels. She has a Master’s degree and spent many an hour running statistical analysis, until she realized her favorite part of the job was writing reports. She decided to cut out the math and add in some hot guys, and so began her career as a novelist.

Jules is a Northern California native living on the coast with her husband and two children. She has no impulse control around cupcakes and credits herself with the ability to read while running on the treadmill or burning dinner.

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~ Good Girls Don’t by Rosalie Lario Release Blitz + Giveaway ~

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Good Girls Don’t
by Rosalie Lario
Everly Brothers #2
Publication Date: November 17, 2014
Also in this series: Wild Girls Rule
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
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Good Girls Don't CoverSynopsis

Good girls don’t do one-night stands…

If there’s one thing Lyssa Rivera knows, it’s that good girls don’t do one-night stands. But it only takes a few hours in the company of sexy businessman, James Everly, to change her mind. All she wants is a night of sin with the man who’s admittedly way out of her league. Then she can go back to being painfully, boringly good.

James Everly doesn’t do relationships, not after the horrible example set by his parents. When he meets a luscious, irresistible woman at his favorite bar, he’s more than ready to show her a night of ecstasy, but that’s all it could ever be. He certainly never plans on seeing her again. Yet when he shows up at his meeting the next morning to woo a venture capitalist, he’s shocked to find his competition is the very woman whose bed he just left.

James knows he should stay away. He’s no good at long term, and that’s what a woman like Lyssa deserves. But as the two vie for the investor’s attention, he finds himself struggling to choose between the family business and the woman whose touch makes him burn with desire.

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Abou the author

Rosalie LarioRosalie Lario is the author of the contemporary romance series, THE EVERLY BROTHERS, as well as the paranormal romance series, DEMONS OF INFERNUM and THE FALLEN WARRIORS. Rosalie double majored in Anthropology and Classics as an undergraduate student, and briefly considered becoming an archaeologist before realizing they don’t actually live the life of Indiana Jones. So what was a classical geek armed with a lot of useless knowledge to do? Become a lawyer, of course!After attending law school in Florida, she practiced real estate law for several years before finally admitting to herself that negotiating contracts wasn’t nearly as fun as dreaming up stories. When not writing, you can find her on a boat somewhere along South Florida’s waterways, chasing down a rainbow or pretending to be a pirate.social links

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~ Finding Southern by Barbara Lohr Release Blitz + Giveaway ~

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Finding Southern Comfort
by Barbara Lohr
Windy City Romance #0.5
Publication Date: November 17, 2014
Also in this series: Her Favorite Mistake, Her Favorite Honeymoon, Her Favorite Hot Doc
Genres: Contemporary, Romance

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Blitz: Finding Southern Comfort by Barbara Lohr

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Synopsis

She’s not what he wanted…
but she is what he needs.

Harper Kirkpatrick is not what Cameron Bennett expects for the bachelor party in his Savannah mansion. She’s desperate when he sends her home. Jobs are scarce and eviction looms. Former boyfriend Billy took off for California and she’s too proud to head home to Chicago.

Although Cameron may not go for her cheerleader kicks, he does admire Harper’s spunk. When she answers his ad for a nanny, she’s horrified to find herself back at his mansion. But she can’t turn down the generous salary or Bella, the toddler with troubled eyes. Youngest in the Kirkpatrick clan, Harper’s not an expert on kids. Neither is the young widower.

Her head-strong personality soon puts her at odds with Cameron and his TV personality girlfriend, Kimmy Carrington. When she stands in for Kimmy at a Savannah gala, Harper and Cameron spark a fire that nearly burns down the dance floor. Never has the wrong man felt so right. Never has a boy from the south worked so hard to rev up the charm. Will the Windy City girl be able to put the heart back in his home? Can he convince her that his southern comfort has staying power?

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Abou the author

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Barbara Lohr writes contemporary romance, adult as well as New Adult, often with a humorous twist. Her early career included teaching writing and lit, while writing theater and book reviews for the local newspaper. When her career broadened to advertising and marketing, her love of literature and writing remained. Eventually, national magazines published more than two hundred of her short stories. Today she concentrates on novels and novellas with feisty women who take on hunky heroes and life’s issues. Barbara lives in the Midwest with her husband and their cat, who insists he was Heathcliff in another life. In addition to travel, her interests include outwitting the deer that insist on sharing her beloved garden. Her Windy City Romances series present Vanessa, Amy and McKenna and the men who are a match for these three high school friends.

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~ Shutter Volume Three by Eli Chastain Cover Reveal ~

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Shutter
by Eli Chastain
Shutter Volume 3
Publication Date: December 1, 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Erotica, Novella, Romance, Serial

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000035_00025]Synopsis

The final volume of Shutter, a three-part series from bestselling author, Eli Chastain.

My entire world changed when dark secrets surrounding me were revealed. Through the hurt and loss an unlikely savior has emerged to shield and protect me. However, my true desires haunt me day and night with thoughts of forgiveness and trust – yet knowing where to place them is unclear.

Having finally found my way back behind the camera, I’m not willing to let anyone deter my dreams again. Trusting my instincts has never been an easy task. But in order to determine if the sins from our past can be forgiven, I must listen to my heart and decide if an undeniable connection is worth the gamble.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000035_00025]

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Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000035_00025]

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Abou the author

AuthorHeadshot

Eli Chastain is a super-secret ninja set on conquering the world one reader at a time. In reality, she’s an alter ego of a struggling author that needs a secondary route to reveal her inner most demons. Follow along to see if you are haunted by some of the same.

Chastain’s contemporary serial, Shutter, is set for publication starting in August 2014 with all subsequent volumes to be released before the end of the year.

And last but not least, Eli is short for Elizabeth and is pronounced E-lie. Just wanted to clear up the confusion.

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