Christie's Reviews

~ REVIEW: The Mistake (Off-Campus #2) by Elle Kennedy ~

91IyQSKSWIL._SL1500_SynopsisHe’s a player in more ways than one…
 
College junior John Logan can get any girl he wants. For this hockey star, life is a parade of parties and hook-ups, but behind his killer grins and easygoing charm, he hides growing despair about the dead-end road he’ll be forced to walk after graduation. A sexy encounter with freshman Grace Ivers is just the distraction he needs, but when a thoughtless mistake pushes her away, Logan plans to spend his final year proving to her that he’s worth a second chance.

Now he’s going to need to up his game…
 
After a less than stellar freshman year, Grace is back at Briar University, older, wiser, and so over the arrogant hockey player she nearly handed her V-card to. She’s not a charity case, and she’s not the quiet butterfly she was when they first hooked up. If Logan expects her to roll over and beg like all his other puck bunnies, he can think again. He wants her back? He’ll have to work for it. This time around, she’ll be the one in the driver’s seat…and she plans on driving him wild.

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christie review 5 star aIf you haven’t discovered this gem of a series, you really need to…like yesterday! I have been waiting for Logan’s story ever since I met him in The Deal. He is Garrett’s friend from The Deal, and he’s just as naughty, sweet, and sexy as Garrett. This book kept me up at night; I had to know what happened, so I read into the wee hours of the morning. But, the lack of sleep was well worth it.

Grace and Logan are one of my favorite book couples ever! They are just so freaking good together. The two come from completely different backgrounds. She has two loving parents, and Logan has a loving mother, but an alcoholic father who seems to descend further into his own darkness that makes him almost unrecognizable to him. Logan is a player with a capital “P”, and she is a virgin. He’s a hockey star hockey player, and Grace doesn’t like hockey but loves football. These two definitely don’t have much in common, but together, they make perfect sense. However, as with all romances, there will be roadblocks to their HEA. Logan and Grace meet by chance when he comes to her room looking for someone else. She knows who he is by his reputation and saw him up close at a party as he came out of a bathroom after one of his famous hookups. He’s intrigued by her, especially by her babbling and her love for action movies, and the first of several HOT hookups begin…some of the sexiest I have ever read. But, Logan isn’t in a good place. His dreams of going pro are rapidly dissipating, and he thinks he has feelings for his best friend’s girl. When he is with Grace, his soul is at peace. However, is she just a distraction, or something more? Is he making the biggest mistake by letting her in his life, or will he move past their hookups and try a real relationship for a change?

I loved the steamy sex and sweet romance between them, but Kennedy also addresses the serious problem of alcohol, and she does it in a very different way than a lot of books. So many New Adult books portray the alcoholic as a monster, and she delves deeper into Logan’s father. I found myself having the same feelings as Logan…I hated him, but I loved him too. Logan remembers the loving father that tried so hard to stay on the wagon, but a tragic accident threw him off. He is turning into an angry man who is becoming unrecognizable. He’s shown in such a human way that allowed me to have sympathy for him and root for him…not just for himself but for his boys. Almost everyone is touched by alcoholism in some way, and this book gives hope to people who may think things are hopeless. There is always a chance for redemption!

Elle Kennedy has an amazing ability to address serious issues, yet she includes lightness and humor throughout her books. She had me crying in some instances, especially seeing Logan’s complicated feelings for his father…love and hate. But in the next instance, she had me laughing my butt off…Grace’s list Logan has to complete before she agrees to a real date with him and his attempts at wooing her. I LOVE THIS SERIES, and I’m so happy to see the biggest player of the all, Dean, will be getting his own story next. I am anxiously waiting to see the woman that tames that wild man.

Abou the authorA USA Today bestselling author, Elle Kennedy grew up in the suburbs of Toronto, Ontario, and holds a B.A. in English from York University. From an early age, she knew she wanted to be a writer, and actively began pursuing that dream when she was a teenager.

Elle currently publishes with Signet Eclipse, Harlequin Romantic Suspense, Samhain Publishing and Entangled Brazen. She loves strong heroines and sexy alpha heroes, and just enough heat and danger to keep things interesting!

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Giveaways

~ Rough (Chicago Underground #1) by Skye warren Re Release Blitz + Giveaway ~

 

 

 

Title: Rough
Series: Chicago Underground #1
Author: Skye Warren
Release Date: May 26, 2015

 

Synopsis

I’m a cautionary tale. A statistic. A victim. A single teenage mother from the poor part of town. Most of the time I’m too busy working and struggling to care what people think. Survival doesn’t come easy.

 I have a dark secret, a pressure valve, a rare moment just for myself. On these nights I visit a club. There I find men who give me what I need.

 Men like Colin.

 But he wants more than a few stolen hours. He demands more than my body. He wants my heart and soul—my happily ever after. I never thought I’d be Cinderella. I never thought a man that rough could be my prince.

 

GOODREADS LINK: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25601261-rough

 

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AVAILABLE IN THE
CHICAGO UNDERGROUND BOXED SET
BOOK ONE

 

 
 
Excerpt

He walked me backward, and we made out against the round fake-wood table, his hands running over my sides, my back. Avoiding the good parts like we were two horny teenagers in our parents’ basements, new to this. I shuddered at the thought. This was all wrong. His hands were too light. I was half under him already, my hips cradling his, so I surged up and nipped at his lip. Predictably his body jerked, and he thrust his hips down onto me.

Yes. That’s what I need. I softened my body, surrendering to him.

“Bed,” he murmured against my lips.

We stripped at the same time, both eager. I wanted to see his body, to witness what he offered me, but it was dark in the room. Then he kissed me back onto the bed, and there was no more time to wonder. The cheap bedspread was rough and cool against my skin. His hands stroked over my breasts and then played gently with my nipples.

My body responded, turning liquid, but something was wrong.

I’d had this problem before. Not everyone wanted to play rough, but I was surprised that I’d misread him. His muscles were hard, the pads of his fingers were calloused. I didn’t know how he could touch me so softly. Everything about him screamed that he could hurt me, so why didn’t he?

I wanted him to have his nasty way with me, but every sweet caress destroyed the illusion. My fantasy was to let him do whatever he wanted with me, but not this.

“Harder,” I said. “I need it harder.”

Instead his hands gentled. The one that had been holding my breast traced the curve around and under.

I groaned in frustration. “What’s wrong?”

He reached down, still breathing heavily, and pressed a finger lightly to my cunt, then stroked upward through the moisture. I gasped, rocking my hips to follow his finger.

“You like this,” he said.

Yes, I liked it. I was undeniably aroused but too aware. I needed the emptiness of being taken. “I like it better rough.”

Colin frowned. My eyes widened at the ferocity of his expression.

In one smooth motion he flipped me onto my stomach. I lost my breath from the surprise and impact. His left hand slid under my body between my legs and cupped me. His right hand fisted in my hair, pulling my head back. His erection throbbed beside my ass in promise. I wanted to beg him to fuck me, but all I could do was gasp. He didn’t need to be told, though, and ground against me, using my hair as a handle.

That small pain on my scalp was perfection, sharp and sweet. Numbness spread through me, as did relief.

The pain dimmed. My arousal did too, but that was okay. I was only vaguely aware of him continuing to work my body from behind.

I went somewhere else in my mind. I’d stay that way all night.

At least that’s what usually happened. Not this time. Instead I felt light strokes on my hair, my arms, my back. His cock pulsed hot against my thigh, but he didn’t try to put it inside me, not in any of the places it would almost fit. His hands on me didn’t even feel sexual. He petted me, and I arched into his caress.

“Why did you stop?” I meant it to come out demanding, but instead I sounded weak. I hated sounding weak, especially about sex. He may be the one with the cock and the fists, but I called the shots. I had to.

“Allie, shhh. It’s okay.” He was trying to soothe me, and it was working. He turned me back over and began to kiss me, still murmuring words against my lips. “I’ll give it to you. Don’t worry. Relax.” More words than he’d spoken all night.

I was lost, my emotions all jumbled up from my arousal and my high and subsequent low, at the mercy of this stranger.

What’s happening to me? I needed to get back to something I knew. I wanted him to fuck me, to be inside me, to center me. I whimpered, hoping he’d understand. “Shhh.” He arranged my arms and legs so that they were splayed open on the bed and then kissed his way down my stomach.

Abou the authorSkye Warren is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of dark romantic fiction.
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Giveaway

Giveaways

~ unDefeated (Wayward Fighters #3) by J.C. Valentine Release Blitz + Giveaway ~

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unDefeated
by J.C. Valentine
Wayward Fighters #3
Publication Date: May 26, 2015
Also in this series: Wayward Fighters: Books 1 & 2
Genres: Contemporary, Romance

unDefeated CoverPurchase Links

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Synopsis

Spencer Bradley ruins everything he touches. Addicted to gambling, he’s lied, cheated, and stolen to get what he wants. Now, in order to protect those he cares for, he’s keeping his distance. Rehab’s taught him a lot, but when his time runs out and he finds himself with nowhere to turn, he seeks help from the one person he’s capable of destroying.

Olivia Carter fell in love the day she met Spencer Bradley. Despite him being responsible for the downfall of his best friend’s career and landing himself in rehab, she can’t bring herself to stay away—even if it means risking her own recovery.

*Note* While this book is a part of the Wayward Fighters series, unDefeated can be read as a standalone.

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Also in the Wayward Fighters series

KNOCKOUT (FREE!)

KnockoutKnockout
by J.C. Valentine
Wayward Fighters #1
Publication Date: April 6, 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
FREE: AmazonNookKoboiBooks

Synopsis

From the wrong side of the tracks…

Alyson Blake had learned early on that the only one she could depend on was herself. The only light in her life was a boy whom everyone agreed was destined for prison; but with his first kiss, he had set her soul on fire. Since the day the police dragged him away in handcuffs, she had managed to lead a quiet life, but when she attends an event fraught with mayhem, trouble resurfaces.

The one person she can’t forget…

Jamison Weston is the kind of guy dads load their shotguns for; endowed with a hot temper and a rap sheet as long as both tattooed arms. Known as “The Judge,” Jami’s hot temper, lethal fists, and cocky attitude have earned him respect and admiration both in and out of the ring. But just when he thinks he’s pummeled his past to death, Alyson Blake reenters his life.

Two paths collide…

After years of separation, Alyson is eager to reexplore the man who’s never left her thoughts, but for Jamison, she’s both the distraction he wants, but doesn’t need. As the two embark on a relationship that neither of them expected or bargained for, an outside threat closes in. When Alyson crosses the line of professionalism and takes her work home with her, her life is put in danger, leaving Jamison with no choice but to once again step in and become her protector.

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TAPOUT (99c!)

Tapout

Tapout
by J.C. Valentine
Wayward Fighters #2
Publication Date: July 8, 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
99c: AmazonNookKoboiBooks

Synopsis

History brought them together. Circumstances may keep them apart.

Alyson Blake’s past left her with scars. Scars that she tried to fix the only way she knew how—by helping others. But actions have consequences, and Alyson is about to find out that being naïve is no excuse.

Fighting is Jamison Weston’s passion. Alyson is his obsession. Despite the past and a few lingering concerns, their relationship is as solid as ever. Until a shocking lie is uncovered and all of his plans begin to unravel. Now, Jami is rushing to pick up the pieces, but as relationships are put to the test, will he be strong enough to keep it together, or will it all just fall apart?

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Abou the author

JC Valentine

USA Today Bestselling author J.C. Valentine is the alter-ego of Brandi Salazar, whose enjoyment of tales of romance spurred her to branch out and create her own.

She lives in the Northwest with her husband, their wild children, and far too many pets. As a university student, she studies literature, which goes well with her dream of becoming an editor. Brandi entertains a number of hobbies including reading and photography, but her first love is writing fiction-in all its forms.

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Giveaways

~ Summer Fire Anthology Release Blitz + Giveaway ~

SummerFireBlitz

Summer Fire
by Brandy L. Rivers, Cat Miller, Clarissa Wild, Danielle Jamie, Gennita Low, Helen Scott Taylor, Joan Reeves, Kym Grosso, L. Wilder, Linda Barlow, Lorhainne Eckhart,Mimi Barbour, Mona Risk, Nicole Blanchard, Patrice Wilton, R.J. Lewis, Teresa Gabelman, Terri Marie, Victoria Danann, Victoria James
Publication Date: May 26, 2015
Genres: Anthology, Contemporary, Romance

SummerFire

20 ALL NEW Contemporary Romance stories by New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon Bestselling authors.

LIMITED TIME ONLY!

Love when it’s hot? So do we. Especially when we’re writing about gritty alphas, angsty bad boys, sizzling attraction, and unrequited passion. So loosen your buttons, turn the fan to oscillate and join us for this steamy, groundbreaking bundle of summer tales that are hot hot hot.

1. Gennita Low Sizzle Spies, Lola and Jake, fall hard for each other. Is their love strong enough for one assignment that would risk everything?

2. R.J. Lewis Sinful Two different people from two different worlds find their lives colliding in the most sinful way.

3. L. Wilder Summer Storm VP Guardrail’s life has always been his MC club. It’s up to him to fix a wrong, but he wasn’t expecting Allie to take him by storm.

4. Victoria Danann A Season in Gemini The first time sexy biker, Brant Fornight, saw Garland St. Germaine, he knew she was going to turn him inside out. And she did.

5. Kym Grosso Solstice Burn Love and temptation flare in a tropical paradise. When Chase rescues Penny, she learns to embrace her inner fantasies.

6. Cat Miller Sun Burnt Kesslyn inherits a ranch, but the city girl is unsure she’s up for the challenge. Can her sexy foreman rope her into staying forever?

7. Mimi Barbour Big Girls Don’t Cry He’s everything she’s ever wanted in a man. And she’s nothing like the girl she wants to be. Something’s gotta change…

8. Clarissa Wild Killer Secrets could kill you. He murdered her husband. She’s the prime suspect seeking justice. Only one of them can win.

9. Teresa Gabelman Rodeo Romance Jake McCabe had one rule. Never date a client. Trisha Summers had a new rule. Never date a man again. Rules were meant to be broken.

10. Helen Scott Taylor Irish Kisses Ten years ago he said he loved her, then he left and broke her heart. Now he’s back, and he wants her again, but can she trust him?

11. Victoria James Sweet Surrender Cade showing up on her doorstep is not what Julia wants-but this bad-boy is back and ready to convince her that this time is forever…

12. Mona Risk Husband for a Week A Sicilian vendetta, a fake husband, and a matchmaking grandmother complicate Jonathan and Isabella’s lives. Can love conquer all?

13. Patrice Wilton A Man for Hire Jordon’s ex-boyfriend is bringing home a bride. To save face she hires a hot guy for the weekend. Sparks fly–can this be love?

14. Linda Barlow My Mile-High Mistake Six years ago, she yearned for her sexy, forbidden high school teacher. Now she can’t resist his temptation at 35,000 feet.

15. Joan Reeves Heat Lightning Her husband found her, claimed her, rescued her. His touch makes her throb. Her body knows him, but she remembers nothing about him.

16. Danielle Jamie Tan Lines and Salty Kisses Becca and Parker have a second chance at summer romance. The spark is hotter than a Georgia July. Can it withstand news of his secret?

17. Terri Marie Someone Exactly Like You Cameron Barron’s plan was solid. A few lies, a disguise, and an apology to Chastity Newberry… What could possibly go wrong?

18. Lorhainne Eckhart His Promise A love they thought would last forever. A promise forgotten. Until one summer night.

19. Brandy L Rivers Summer Rhythm Doug never could resist Chloe. She always runs. Will this time be different or is their summer rhythm destined to repeat.

20. Nicole Blanchard Anchor I thought it was a weekend from hell, until he showed me a little piece of heaven.

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Book Tours · Giveaways

~ Dismantled (Girls on Top) by Yara Greathouse Blog Tour + Giveaway ~

Title: Dismantled
Series: Girls On Top Series
Author: Yara Greathouse
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: May 18, 2015
Cover Designa: Rebecca Berto of Berto Designs
Photography: Erin Dawn Photography
Synopsis
What happens when a stranger takes everything from you in the blink of an eye? When your life goes from perfection to hell and you aren’t sure if you want to climb out of the hole you’re in or dig down deeper?
 
Events from Traxx Maxwell’s past prevent him from getting into serious relationships and he likes it that way. One unexpected day, hell breaks loose. “The Incident” happens. Traxx is forced to watch something that no one should ever see. He starts to fall into a person that no one recognizes. There is darkness moving within him – he is broken inside.
 
While she’s waiting for Traxx to quit his slutty ways and really notice her, Ciara Collins is dating other guys and having fun. One unexpected day “The Incident” takes over Traxx’s life. While he tries to push everyone away, Ciara refuses to retreat. Can she help him put his fractured life back together or will he have to remain this shattered shell, completely dismantled?
 
And just when life seems somewhat bearable, the creepers who have been quietly observing and enjoying Traxx’s suffering, have decided to take everything away from him – once and for all.
 
This is a story about how the unexpected can make someone’s life fall into pieces, and how unconditional love and friendship can help those who are dismantled become whole again.

 

Purchase Links

Excerpt

 

I’m still waiting for him to say something…
anything. So many emotions cross his face in a matter of seconds. Happy.
Confused. Sadness. I don’t know what to say. Perhaps I need to say nothing at
all. In the stillness, our eyes do all the silent talking. Our chests move with
heavy breathing and desire pours out through our pores. It’s unmistakable. The
question is what are we going to do about it? The seconds feel like hours while
we weigh each other’s options.
 
Finally, Traxx man-ups the situation, and he slowly
takes a couple of steps until he invades all my senses. So close that I can
feel his body heat, and the clean scent of his cologne becomes a part of the
air I breathe. I look at him, my high heeled shoes giving me a closer look to
his masculine face. His jaw is tense. His eyes intense. It’s a lot more than I
can take. He’s everywhere and nowhere all at once. I want to grab a hold of
him, and I want to turn around and walk away. Too many feelings…too much. I
want it all. With shaky fingers I place a hand on his chest. I’m unsure if I
should push or pull, so I leave it still instead. He is rock solid and soft at
the same time, if that’s even possible. His heat burns my hand, but I won’t
move it. It’s the best burn I’ve ever had.
 
The heat moves through that hand and comes into me
– inside of me, moving throughout my body and filling in my empty heart. One of
his hands comes up to cover the one I have on his chest, and as I turn my head
to look at the Traxx sandwich my hand’s caught in between, his other hand lifts
up, and grabs my hair, moving it behind my shoulder. His hand caresses my
shoulder, then my collarbone, never leaving my skin, until it finally wraps
around the side of my neck and with his thumb, he gently rubs the outline of my
jaw. Back and forth. And again – back and forth. It’s a beautiful feeling. It’s
excruciating. I catch myself looking into his eyes and then my eyes move so I
can stare at his lips.
 
“Ciara, you are breathtakingly beautiful.”
 
I realize I can’t talk and then something similar
to a whimper escapes my lips. I recover quickly by clearing my throat and
whispering, “Thank you.” The time lingers on. I wish I could pull him inside my
place and into my room. Keep him there, allowing myself to be selfish. There
are so many things I want to do to this man that even eternity wouldn’t be
enough time. I also need to try and decipher these feelings I have for him. To
show him someone cares and that he is worth it. His eyes say so much and
nothing at all.
 
Raising my chin with his fingers, Traxx whispers,
“It’s time to go.”
 
“Is it really… time?”
 
“Yes, it is. We may have to finish… this… another
day. Don’t you think?”
 
“Agreed. We really have to work on…this.”
 
He kisses the top of my hand and steps away from
me, back into the receiving hall, waiting for me to lock the door. I turn
around and he smiles and extends his hand towards me. I hold on to it and
follow him to the truck. The thought occurs to me that I would follow this man
anywhere he needed me.

 

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Abou the author
 
Yara Greathouse likes to write contemporary romance dashed with elements of suspense. She grew up in Dominican Republic, moved to the Unites States at the age of 17 and served in the US Army. Always an animated storyteller, she finally gave into her friends’ requests for her to write. Her first series, “Girls On Top” is about strong female lead characters and the sexy alpha males who love them. 
 
She currently resides in Texas, but calls Georgia her “home” state. She lives with her husband, has two boys, a dog (Hank) and a cat (Mollie) who acts like a spoiled child. Her days are dedicated to a job she loves as a Business Analyst, and during her free time she writes, takes care of her family, and indulges on her love of reading, cooking and travel. She loves to hear from readers, bloggers and other authors. You can find her at:
 
Email: YaraWrites@hotmail.com
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