Archive | All-time Favorites RSS feed for this section

Interlude (An Illusion Series Novel) by D. Kelly Blog Tour with Review & Excerpt

5 Feb

We are so excited to be bringing you the release of INTERLUDE by D. Kelly. INTERLUDE is a brand new standalone contemporary romance and tells the much awaited story of Jordan Weston. Be sure to grab your copy today!

 

About INTERLUDE

Jordan Weston is good-looking, mysterious, and sexually uninhibited, but his life is more like the name of his bar―Just an Illusion. His cousins are the bad boys of Bastards and Dangerous, but their fame hasn’t made everything rainbows and sunshine for him. He’s haunted, flawed, and the sole survivor of a homicide that wiped out his immediate family.

Allie Baker, the most recent hire at the bar, can see through Jordan’s façade. She knows he’s everything she doesn’t need, but she’s beginning to crave his cocky attitude and the way he looks at her. The more she tries to stay away from him, the more she wants to get to know him.

Jordan knows falling for an employee is a bad idea, but Allie pushes buttons he never realized he had. Even though Allie desperately needs her job, she soon decides being with Jordan is more important. Will they be able to compromise, or will she let her chance at love pass her by for the sake of a paycheck?

Add INTERLUDE to your Goodreads TBR!

 




Christie’s Review

5 STARS

Interlude is a great addition to one of my very favorite series EVER!!!!

Kelly has always surprised me, but she completely took me by surprise with this book. I knew what was going to happen because I have read the other books, and the events occur concurrently with those, so that wasn’t the surprise. The surprise was Jordan. He was a mystery to me. I wasn’t quite sure who he was or if I was going to really like him. He was a master at the facade he created to keep others at a distance. Granted, he loved the physical contact with others, yet he couldn’t handle the emotional contact…sometimes even with family. However, Allie was able to somehow penetrate those steel walls around his heart.

Allie was the direct opposite of Jordan. She is open and sweet. Yes, Jordan is honest but not so much with his feelings, not like Allie. She is light to Jordan’s darkness, and she was just the type of girl I would want to be friends with. I couldn’t help but love her. She had the ability to change a room just by walking in…not so much with her physical beauty but the beauty she radiated from within.

The storyline itself was addictive. Once I started, I was enthralled. I looked up and didn’t realize I had been reading until late into the night. The chemistry between these two is INSANE, yet Kelly doesn’t short-change their emotional connection. There was a bit of a love triangle, but I have to say it was unlike one I have ever seen before. There is a bit of angst, and at times, I got aggravated at Jordan. I just wanted him to make a decision. On the other hand, I could understand why he behaved the way he did.

This series has been one of my favorites ever! Kelly knew how to balance steam, romance, love, family, pain, and hope seamlessly. It is a series not to be missed. She will bring out all of your emotions. You will be happy, angry, sad, and yes, happy again!!!! I was so glad to finally get Jordan’s story. I’m looking forward to getting to know more of the secondary characters in upcoming novels.




Get your copy of INTERLUDE today!
Amazon | Amazon Paperback | Apple Books | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

 

Read an excerpt from INTERLUDE

“You’re just a big ol’ loveable ball of fur, aren’t you? Why did your daddy name you Fat Bastard? That’s just mean.”

“Because that’s what he is to most people.”

I jump and grab the cat, who isn’t pleased I disturbed his resting place. “Jesus, Jordan! You scared the crap out of me.”

He leans back against the wall, a grin kicking up at the corner of his mouth. Jordan seems tired but also quite amused. “Sorry, I didn’t expect anyone to be in my house. And I definitely didn’t expect to see my ornery cat curled up in your lap. Did you cast a spell on him?”

“He’s really that bad? I thought Sasha was exaggerating. All I did was feed him, give him water, and talk to him.”

Jordan takes a seat next to me, and I swear the temperature in here just rose about ten degrees. What is it about him that affects me like this? He’s not my type at all. Then again, my type hasn’t worked out so well for me either.

“Fat Bastard earned his name all by himself. Maybe you should have been the one to find him instead of me. I’ve never seen him take to someone like this, except with kids, but kids are pretty special in their own right, so I figured that was probably normal.”

Oh my God, he likes kids.

I’m not sure how to reply because I’m still stuck on the kid thing, but I get a reprieve when my phone rings. Jordan passes it to me and accidentally hits the speaker button.

“Hello? Allie … Christ, Allie, it’s about time! Are you finally going to talk to me?”

Shit. Evan is pissed. Jordan’s eyes cloud over like a thunderous rainstorm as he scowls at my phone.

“Evan, I can’t talk right now.”

“The hell you can’t. The gala is in three days, Allie. We’re announcing our engagement, your father is out of his mind, and he froze your trust fund. You have no money, Allie. It’s time to stop having a tantrum and come home.”

This is so embarrassing. My gaze locks on J’s, and I mouth “I’m sorry.”

“Evan, I suggest you do some damage control. Find the trollop you were fucking and announce your engagement to her instead for all I care. As I said in my letter, I’m not coming back. I’m sorry if you were planning to live off my trust fund, but if I can live without it, so can you.”

“You selfish bitch!” Evan rages.

Jordan’s eyes widen before he opens his mouth, and when he does, I’m not sure if I want to kiss him or punch him—or both.

“Babe, come back to bed. My cock misses your lips.”

“Who the hell is that?!” Evan screams.

Jordan nudges the cat to the floor and scoots closer to me. “This is the man Allie is currently fucking. Who are you?”

Evan sputters, and I can picture him losing his cool. “Allie, what is going on?”

Jordan flips me onto his lap, and I squeal in surprise. My eyes widen as he mouths “Go with it.”

What do I have to lose at this point?

Jordan leans in closer, holding the phone between us. “Come on, babe. Hang up the phone and let’s go back to bed.”

“Bed? That’s my fiancée you’re talking about. Allie Bear, tell me this is some kind of sick joke,” Evan whines.

“There’s no ring on her finger. Besides, possession is nine tenths of the law, and since her pussy was just wrapped around my dick, I’d say that makes her more mine than yours right now. Wouldn’t you?”

My cheeks flush as J runs his fingers across one with a lazy grin.

“Come on, Bear, tell him you’re just paying me back. A little quid pro quo, right?”

Jordan snickers. “You call her Bear? That’s adorable, but I think she’s more of a tigress myself. My little Allie Cat.” Jordan drops his mouth to my neck, and I can’t help the moan that escapes me. “Hear that, Evan? Doesn’t sound like anyone’s fiancée to me.” Jordan’s lips ghost over mine, and I whimper. It’s been a long time since I’ve been this attracted to someone, if ever.

“This isn’t over, Allie. Do you hear me?” Evan is probably redder than a beet, but when Jordan lowers his mouth to mine, it erases the image of Evan in my mind.

He kisses me loudly, like a man on a mission. Weaving his hands through my hair, he pulls me close. J nips my bottom lip, and I gasp in pleasure, his length growing beneath me as I press into him with a contented sigh. He turns off my phone and tosses it to the opposite side of the couch.

Jordan’s mouth closes over mine, and I fall into his kiss with all my senses. His tongue meets mine and claims it. This isn’t a sweet getting-to-know-you kiss. This is a sexual awakening I never knew I was missing, and I want more. Evan is already a distant memory as I press myself closer while losing myself in his kiss. As I tug on his hair, he growls into my mouth. I remember the freshly fucked look he had to him when we met, and I want to be the one to make him look that way. I want to be the one on my knees for him.

Get your copy of INTERLUDE today!
Amazon | Amazon Paperback | Apple Books | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

 

 

About D. KELLY

Kelly, author of The Acceptance Series, The Illusion Series, and standalone companion novels Chasing Cassidy and Sharing Rylee, was born and raised in Southern California. She’s a wife, mom, dog lover, taxi, problem fixer, and extreme multi-tasker. She married her high school sweetheart and is her kids’ biggest fan.

Kelly has been writing since she was young and took joy in spinning stories to her childhood friends. Margaritas and sarcasm make her smile, she loves the beach but hates the sand, and she believes Starbucks makes any day better.

A contemporary romance writer, D. Kelly’s stories revolve around friendship and the bond it creates, strengthening the love of the people who share it.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Newsletter | BookBub

Advertisements

Only a Breath Apart by Katie McGarry Blog Tour with Review, Excerpt, & Giveaway ($50 Amazon Gift Card for 1 winner)

28 Jan

Would you dare to defy destiny? Are our destinies written in stone? Do we become nothing more than the self-fulfilling prophesies of other people’s opinions? Or can we dare to become who we believe we were born to be?

“A gorgeous, heartfelt journey of redemption and love” (Wendy Higgins), ONLY A BREATH APART is a young adult contemporary novel from critically acclaimed Katie McGarry. “Haunting, authentic, and ultimately hopeful” (Tammara Webber), ONLY A BREATH APART is now available!

About ONLY A BREATH APART:

They say your destiny is carved in stone. But some destinies are meant to be broken.

The only curse Jesse Lachlin believes in is his grandmother’s will: in order to inherit his family farm he must win the approval of his childhood best friend, the girl he froze out his freshman year.

A fortuneteller tells Scarlett she’s psychic, but what is real is Scarlett’s father’s controlling attitude and the dark secrets at home. She may be able to escape, but only if she can rely on the one boy who broke her heart.

Each midnight meeting pushes Jesse and Scarlett to confront their secrets and their feelings, but as love blooms, the curse rears its ugly head…

 




Christie’s Review

5 +++++ STARS

An All-time Favorite

A Top Read of 2019

Only a Breath Apart by Katie McGarry is young adult fiction at its finest!!!!

Scarlett and Jesse were inseparable as children, until they weren’t. Each of them gave the other exactly what they needed at the time. Their time was an escape from their dark and sad realities. Before high school, Jesse severed that unbreakable bond and his important friendship with Scarlett. Years later, they will need each other more than ever to escape their pasts and forge a happier future, but the question is…will they do that together or apart?

This is a beautiful tale of two people who carry scars, some physical but both deep in their hearts. McGarry gives us a look into their lives and hearts as the story is told from both of their POVs. As they spend time together, they will come to learn each other’s darkest secrets, and those secrets are painful. As is McGarry’s talent, she handles each one with love and sensitivity. This was a couple I loved from the very beginning.

Both Jesse and Scarlett were strong individuals who learned quickly how cruel the world is. Yet, they never gave up in the face of the obstacles they encountered. McGarry also created a cast of secondary characters that were essential to the story, such as Glory. Even those characters were complex and had hidden layers that were discovered throughout the book.

This is truly a book not to be missed. It gives hope for a new, brighter, and better future. McGarry weaved together a spectacular book full of her magical words that engulfed my heart and soul.




Amazon | Kobo | Google Play

B-A-M | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books


Gritty and real, Only a Breath Apart is a story of hope conjured from pain, strength drawn from innocence, and love earned from self-respect. Beautiful, poignant, and fierce.”
―Kristen Simmons, critically acclaimed author of the Article 5 series


Add it to your Goodreads today!

EXCERPT:

~SCARLETT~

A scraping of a chair, a tray full of food and I glance over with my practiced smile in welcome. It’s not Camila, Evangeline, or anyone else from the group. It’s green eyes, red hair, a familiar mischievous smile that used to be reserved only for me, and my blood pounds with excitement as if someone lit a sparkler in my chest. Then I frown because I’m not supposed to feel this way. Not with him. Not with anyone.

Jesse Lachlin winks at me as he sits across from me like no time has passed from when we climbed trees together. “What’s up, Tink?”

Another thrill runs through me but then my muscles tighten. Stupid, antiquated reaction belonging to a dead past. “What are you doing here?”

Jesse pops a fry into his mouth, chews, then picks up another as if he has no intention of answering. I scan the cafeteria. Several people are watching us, curious as to why Jesse Lachlin is sitting with me, or is event at lunch, or even at school.

From the lunch line, Camila’s and Evangeline’s eyes are bugging out of their heads.

What is going on? Camila mouths.

I raise my eyebrows to inform her I have no idea. Jesse digs into his corn with his fork and that’s crossing a line. “Maybe you didn’t hear me, but I asked what you’re doing here.”

He lifts his eyes to meet mine and there’s a glimmer in them that causes my lips to flatten. Fantastic. He’s here to make my life a living hell.

“It seems obvious,” he says.

If he remembers anything about me, he should recall I was never known for my patience and that he should be speaking, and speaking soon. “Just answer the question.”

“I’m eating lunch.”

I honest to God groan in frustration. “There’s no room at the inn.”

He surveys the table, takes in the empty seats, my books, and then gives me a good look. A slow look. As if he’s trying to memorize every inch he’s drinking in. My cheeks redden because that somehow feels a little too intimate for lunch. Feels a little too intimate for someone I’m no longer friends with. It feels too intimate if we were friends.

I glance away, but I sense him still staring at me. God help me, I want to stare back.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Katie McGarry Bio:

Katie is the author of the PUSHING THE LIMITS series, THUNDER ROAD series, SAY YOU’LL REMEMBER ME, and the upcoming YA novel, ONLY A BREATH APART. Her novels have received starred reviews, critical acclaim and have won multiple awards including being a multiple Goodreads Choice Award Finalist for YA Fiction, multiple RT Magazine’s Reviewer’s Choice Award Finalist for Best YA Fiction, including a win in the category, and she was a 2013 YALSA Top Ten Teen Pick.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest | Tumbler | Instagram

 

Perfect Match by Zoe May Blog Tour with Review

17 Jan

perfect match

Perfect Match

by Zoe May

 

Synopsis:

Can you ever find true love online?

Sophia Jones is an expert in all things online dating: the best sites, how to write a decent bio, which questions to ask and the right type of photos to use. The only thing she’s not so great at? Picking the guys…

After sitting through yet another dreadful date with a man who isn’t quite what she expected, Sophia is just about ready to give up on the whole dating scene. But her flatmate, Kate, persuades her to give it one more chance, only this time she must create a profile describing her ‘perfect’ man.

Yes, he must look like Robert Pattinson and needs to own a multi-million pound business, but there are a couple of other deal breakers, too! So, when a guy comes along who ticks every box, surely there’s got to be a catch?

A laugh-out-loud romantic comedy, perfect for fans of Catherine Bennetto and Rosie Blake!




Christie’s Review

5 ++++ STARS

Perfect Match was one of those special books that ticks all my boxes to make it a 5-star read. It was sweet, funny, and had great characters!!!!

Sophia has become an expert at online dating yet she can’t seem to find the right guy. In fact, she seems to find all the wrong guys. One night she and her friend, Kate, come up with a dating profile on a new site, Dream Dates, just for fun and some alcohol was involved. You can only imagine…just know it involves a lot of laughs. When she gets a message from a guy who seems to be everything she was dreaming of, she isn’t quite sure if he is the real thing. Thus, begins Sophia’s journey to find her “perfect” man, but she will also go on a journey to discover who she really is.

This was a very different romance for me in that the writer, May, kept me guessing. That really isn’t something I see much in the genre…I loved it! She gave me some twists and turns. I always like when a book also has a deeper story as well. Sophia has a deeper story to tell us. She has a perception about how things should be, and she learns things aren’t always what they appear to be. She learns some really important life lessons, and she does it with such a sense of humor. I know you will come to love her as much as I did!!!!

I know I’m leaving her possible love interests out of this review, but they are a huge part of the story. I don’t want to ruin a thing because that part of the story is what made this such a great book!!!!

I love when a book surprises me, and this one certainly did that!!!! You can’t go wrong with this romantic comedy!!!! It’s one of my favorites of 2019!!!




 

Purchase Link

images

Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Perfect-Match-laugh-out-loud-romantic-comedy-ebook/dp/B075MW7HNC/

Amazon US – https://www.amazon.com/Perfect-Match-laugh-out-loud-romantic-comedy-ebook/dp/B075MW7HNC/

 

Author Bio 

larb97qo

Zoe May lives in south-east London and writes romantic comedies. Zoe has dreamt of being a novelist since she was a teenager. She moved to London in her early twenties and worked in journalism and copywriting before writing her debut novel, Perfect Match. Having experienced the London dating scene first hand, Zoe could not resist writing a novel about dating, since it seems to supply endless amounts of weird and wonderful material!

As well as writing, Zoe enjoys going to the theatre, walking her dog, painting and, of course, reading.

Zoe loves to hear from readers, you can contact her on Twitter and Instagram at: @zoe_writes

Social Media Links –

Twitter: https://twitter.com/zoe_writes

https://instagram.com/zoe_writes

 

perfect match full tour banner

New Review: The Substitute by Mickey Miller

14 Jan

The Substitute

by Mickey Miller

Synopsis

Amazon Bestselling Author Mickey Miller brings you a sexy, new standalone romance novel.

When the NFL goes on strike, Super Bowl champion Peyton O’Rourke ends up back in his hometown as a substitute teacher and high school football coach.
The one thing he didn’t count on?
Fellow elementary school teacher Maddy Cooper being newly single.

She’s the hot girl next door type.

Literally. She’s literally the cute girl who grew up next door to Peyton and his best friend’s (now ex)girl.

And even though he knows he should be with anyone other than Maddy Cooper —

Well you know the drill.

Things are going to get hot. Heavy.

Does Facebook still have an ‘It’s complicated’ button?
Because it’s about to go down.

Add To Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43411283-the-substitute

Christie’s Review

5 ++++ STARS

All-Time Favorite Read

Top Read of 2019

Top Read in Sports Romance & Romantic Comedy

What an addictive read!!! I couldn’t put the book down until I had finished the last page, and now I’m sad I had to say good-bye to Peyton and Maddy!!!

Peyton and Maddy were neighbors when they were teenagers, and Maddy was the girlfriend of Peyton’s friend, Eric. Peyton left their small town and didn’t look back. He was a Super Bowl Champion. Maddy stayed and became an elementary school teacher. Years later, Peyton returns. The NFL is on strike, and he comes home as a substitute teacher and high school football coach. Maddy is adjusting to single life since Eric broke up with her to travel. Now, he has moved back in with his grandmother who has Alzheimer’s. Once these two lay eyes on each other again, the sparks FLY!!!!!

I fell in love with the characters and the storyline! Peyton was so much more than I first thought he was. He was self-confident and somewhat cocky, with a hilarious sense of humor. Underneath that sexy exterior, was a somewhat vulnerable man who was afraid to get his heart broken by the woman who held it in the palm of her hands.

“He was a wolf in sheep’s clothing. He could charm the pants off almost anyone when he wanted to, but those who knew the background on his upbringing, like I did, knew he hid shades of darkness behind his smile.”

Maddy was the “girl next door.” She was sweet, loyal, and loving. But, like Peyton, she was complex and had more layers than I thought she did. Underneath that wholesome exterior was a woman who was passionate but yet didn’t feel comfortable sharing that side with anyone.

The storyline just like the characters were complex and multi-layered. The steamy romance between Peyton and Maddy was a big part of the book, but there was another story taking place at the same time. Maddy was a woman who was trying to find her own independence and direction in her own life. She found herself at a crossroads, did she choose security or take a chance on the unknown. Peyton was what she needed to test the waters. He was there for her just like she was there for him when he was a teenager. Peyton was also in unchartered territory. He had never had the feelings for anyone that he was developing for Maddy. At first, he tried to get her out of his mind. Then, he tried to be satisfied with their “no strings” relationship, but he kept finding himself wanting it all with Maddy.

“Trying to keep her out of my mind only etched her deeper onto my soul.”

The book was well-written, and I loved how Miller ended the chapters, giving me a bit of foreshadowing of what was to come. I have not had the opportunity to read Miller before. I’m so glad I’ve discovered this talented writer. He knows how to writer with the perfect balance of steam and romance that gives you “all the feels.” He was able to blend humor, steam, and romance flawlessly to give me another top read of 2019.

Purchase Links

51fcrhabihl

https://amzn.to/2SPLHOK

Also available on Kindle Unlimited

 

Meet The Author

aerueknd_400x400

Mickey is one of seven men who are members of the Romance Writers of America. He loves playing sports, performing improv, and pineapples. After trying his hand at screenwriting, he found his passion being one of a handful of guys who writes over-the-top contemporary romance novels. He lives in Chicago, IL and yes, his Grandmother knows what he does for a living. But she keeps it on the DL.

Social Links

Website: http://www.mickeymillerauthor.com/

  Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mickeymillerauthor/

  Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/mickeymillerwri/pins/

New Review: Ruthless King (A Kings of Rittenhouse Novel) by Maya Hughes with Playlist & Giveaway (5 eARCs of RUTHLESS KING!)

13 Jan
Title: Ruthless KingSeries: Kings of Rittenhouse #3

Author: Maya Hughes
Genre: New Adult
Release Date: January 10, 2019
Blurb
My dick never got me in half as much trouble as my heart…We were high school sweethearts. I was head over heels for her and no one could tell me we weren’t going to last forever. College? Going pro? My family’s money? None of it mattered. She was all I needed.

Then she ripped my heart out. But I’m not going to let that happen again.

She’s back. Invading my life and acting like she was the wronged one. The pain is still there, but I can’t keep my eyes off her. I can’t stop thinking about her and how much was left unsaid between us. Being this close is making me question everything I thought I knew about her.

This time everything will be on my terms. Everything…



Christie’s Review

5 STARS

Oh my goodness, Maya Hughes had control of my emotions from the first pages of this book until I finished the very last line.

Ruthless King is the rollercoaster romance of Emmett and Avery. These two fell hard and fast for each other when they were just in high school. Both of them thought they could achieve their dreams together. However, that wasn’t destiny’s plan for them…at least not at that time. Their breakup was devastating to each of them, especially Emmett as he believed something he thought he knew. But, appearances can be deceiving. Both tried to pick up the pieces and move on. Emmett’s dreams were realized, but Avery was still working on hers. Neither of them were able to move on from one another. When fate brings them together for a summer reunion with friends, they will have to decide whether to go on together or apart. Needless to say, the drama and emotion is at an all-time high.

Both Avery and Emmett had family issues that continued to affect their present day lives. Emmett has never had a good relationship with his family. He could never rely on them. The only thing he could get from them is their money, and it always had strings attached. Avery was the caretaker of her family. She was a mother to her younger sister and tried to help her father, all while putting her dreams on hold. Avery was definitely the stronger of the two, and Emmett would need that strength when secrets are revealed.

I loved both Avery and Emmett as well as their friends. I hated the way in which they broke up, and the two still made immature and hurtful decisions based on their past pain. I wished each of them had just talked and had been honest with each other, but I think they needed to mature. It made them both stronger when they came back together.

I love a good second chance romance, and Maya Hughes gave me one of my favorites. She definitely knows how to tug at your heartstrings. I can’t wait for the next book. She did a great job of setting that one up for us in the epilogue!!!!

Purchase Links
$2.99 for a limited time!
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
Free in Kindle Unlimited
Playlist
Also Available
FREE prequel!!
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
Free in Kindle Unlimited
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
Free in Kindle Unlimited
Author Bio
Maya Hughes has always loved romance novels. One look at her Kindle is confirmation. She started writing her first romance novel while pregnant with her third child and she hasn’t looked back. Now, her romance writing addiction has replaced her romance reading addiction.
 

You can find her writing on her foldable keyboard and phone anytime inspiration strikes. Her sweet and steamy stories range from rockstars to small towns and everything in between. When she’s not writing, she’s playing with her three kids, running errands or vegging on the couch with the love of her life and biggest fan, her husband.

Author Links

BOOK+MAIN

INSTAGRAM

BOOKBUB

FACEBOOK GROUP

TWITTER

NEWSLETTER

WEBSITE

Tragic (Lark Cove Series #3) by Devney Perry Review Blitz

14 Nov

 

 

 

Kaine Reynolds wants nothing more than solitude. After an unthinkable tragedy destroys his family, he’s cut off all ties to his former life so he can battle his grief the only way he knows how.W

Alone.

So when Piper Campbell knocks on his door, rambling on about being his new neighbor, he slams the door in her face.

But Kaine’s gruff demeanor doesn’t scare her. She’s set on living in Montana and starting over after a terrible divorce. And she wouldn’t mind having a fling to chase away the pain of her husband’s betrayal. Her handsome, albeit rude, neighbor is the perfect candidate.

Yet what neither of them suspect is that their no-strings affair will result in the surprise of Piper’s lifetime—and Kaine’s worst fear.




Christie’s Review

5 +++++ STARS

A Top Read of 2018

An All-Time Favorite Read

Tragic is another winner from Devney Perry, and she proves tragedy can lead to magic!

This is Kaine and Piper’s story. It involves pain and suffering so be prepared to shed some tears. As usual, Perry will make it up to you!!!! Kaine has spent the past years in solitude dealing with a tragic loss that many people would never recover from. He chooses to deal with his pain by himself that is, until a beautiful stranger moves next door completely taking away his solitude.

Piper moves to the town of Lark Cove, leaving behind a bitter divorce. She is hoping to find some peace and maybe a chance for a no-strings affair to alleviate the pain after her ex-husband’s betrayal. She loves her new home…her new neighbor, Kaine, not so much! Granted, he is easy on the eyes, but his attitude stinks. Yet, she doesn’t let his anger towards her affect her. There is no mistake, there is a mutual annoyance and frustration between the two of them, but there is also a massive undercurrent of lust. One fateful day, these two cross the line into lust, and things are never the same again!

The ingredients of a great story for me need to consist of three things: a good story, great characters, and a great setting. Perry always excels at this! For instance, she had my heart in knots from the prologue. From there, the story fell into place, and I was hooked.

She also manages to create characters that I always feel a connection with, and this book was no different. My heart was Kaine’s from the very beginning. I knew he was going to be a complicated and complex character. I might not always be happy with him, and he might make me mad…yet he had a piece of my heart. With Piper’s patience and love, he became the person he was always meant to be.

Piper was like a ray of sunshine in Kaine’s dark storm. Don’t get me wrong, she wasn’t without her flaws either. She had a hard time trusting men, and I couldn’t blame her. Kaine wasn’t the best person to trust your heart to, but Piper was patient with him. Like Kaine, she wasn’t the same person she was in the beginning either…she was much better.

Perry created such a unique, charming town in Lark Cove. The setting is beautiful, and she writes with such detail that I feel like I’m there myself. Each time I return, she shows me something else beautiful and special about it.

As I wrote earlier, Devney Perry manages to write a novel that pulls at my heartstring. To me, she is much more than a just a writer, but she is an immensely talented storyteller. That is always what makes me come back for anything she writes!!!!




AVAILABLE NOW

Amazon | iBooks | B&N | Kobo

 

READ THE PROLOGUE FOR TRAGIC HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Devney is the USA Today bestselling author of the Jamison Valley series. She lives in Montana with her husband and two children. After working in the technology industry for nearly a decade, she abandoned conference calls and project schedules to enjoy a slower pace at home with her kids. She loves reading and, after consuming hundreds of books, decided to share her own stories. Devney loves hearing from readers! Connect with her on social media.

Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Newsletter

I Bet You by Ilsa Madden-Mills Blog Tour with Excerpt & Review

7 Nov

IBY-SBPRBANNER-BT.jpg

She’s the one bet I can’t resist…

Wall Street Journal bestselling author Ilsa Madden-Mills returns with an all-new swoon-fest of a novel about what happens when you look beyond labels and take a chance on love.

I Bet You, an all-new sexy college romance standalone is available NOW!

I-BET-You-REALFINAL-3.jpg

Sexy Athlete: I bet you…

Penelope Graham: Burn in hell, quarterback.

The late night text is random but Penelope knows exactly who “Sexy Athlete” is. And why she shouldn’t take his wager.

Ryker Voss.

Football star.

Walks on water and God’s gift to women.

Just ask him.

His bet? He promises Penelope he’ll win her the heart of the nerdy guy she’s been crushing on. His plan—good old-fashioned jealousy. Once her crush sees her kissing Ryker, he’ll realize what he’s missing. Sounds legit, right? The only question is…why is Ryker being so nice to her?

Penelope Graham.

Virgin.

Lover of sparkly vampires and calculus.

His mortal enemy.

Penelope knows she shouldn’t trust a jock, but what’s a girl to do when she needs a date to Homecoming? And Ryker’s keeping a secret, another bet, one that could destroy Penelope’s heart forever.

Will the quarterback score the good girl or will his secret mean everyone loses at this game of love?




Christie’s Review

5 Stars

All-Time Favorite Read

A Top Read of 2018

A Top Read in Romantic Comedy

 

Ilsa Madden-Mills has created another well-written romance that made me weak in the knees and my heart go pitter-patter!!!

 

There is no love loss between Penelope and Ryker. She hates everything he stands for, especially that he is a star quarterback. That might have to do with some past family issues in her past. Ryker was the subject of a journalistic piece Penelope did the year before, so he really shouldn’t be her biggest fan. Yet, these two feel some sort of pull toward one another. However, one midnight text and a promise to help her land the man of her dreams will put these to on a road they never expected…one that will help them look past their preconceptions of each other and possibly a forever kind of love.

 

Oh my gosh…I just loved these two characters! Penelope is the girl I would want as my best friend. Her nerdiness just makes her adorable. She “part goofy but clever.” She exudes a sexiness yet with equal parts innocence. It’s all those qualities that attract Ryker. She is also quite tough, and despite her issues with her father, she doesn’t let hard times keep her down.

 

At first glance, Ryker appears cocky and arrogant. However, as the story progresses, we see a whole other side to him. Plus, the guy is really funny. It’s those qualities that pull at Penelope’s heart, and it’s getting harder for her to resist his charm. Plus, the guy is drop dead gorgeous. All those things make him lethal!

 

Madden-Mills has created a fascinating, sexy, and sweet enemies to lover’s story. Despite the instant chemistry, she took her time crafting their romance. She made them somewhat friends first, with a great deal of flirting involved. In addition, this woman knows how to write romance. No matter what she writes, she ALWAYS gives me butterflies. She is an expert at sexual chemistry and anticipation, yet it is always filled with emotion.

 

Ilsa Madden-Mills is one of those writers that just has that something special. She has the ability to draw me into whatever story she is writing, making me fall in love with the characters, while pulling at my heartstrings, leaving me with a smile on my face!!!!




IBY-AN

Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2yKDR15

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/IBetYouIMM

Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2vLgSkX

 

Excerpt:

Penelope

I stand in front of the mirror in the restroom and gasp. Holy moly, I’m a total disaster. Red is on my shirt, my neck, my cheek, and there’s even a dab in my hair. I let out a heavy sigh as I wipe at it with a wet paper towel. At least my hair is auburn and the red will just blend right in. I scrub at the stain on my shirt, but all I end up doing is making a giant wet spot.

“Forget it,” I mutter to myself a few minutes later as I straighten my lopsided messy bun and adjust my glasses. My makeup is faded, and I reach into my apron for a tube of cherry red lipstick then quickly swipe it over my mouth. Like that’s going to improve the situation. I need a makeover and new clothes stat.

I walk out of the restroom and take in Sugar’s Bar and Grill, a restaurant in Magnolia, Mississippi. The dinner rush is over, but a few stragglers will come in, mostly college students. Only a block from campus, Sugar’s has a modern farmhouse feel with galvanized steel light fixtures, pale pine floors, and straight-back metal chairs, but the food…well, that’s what keeps the place hopping. It’s the only restaurant near campus to get anything you want served up with a side of fresh fried green tomatoes. Their menu also features Southern classics, such as chicken and dumplings or macaroni and cheese with bacon sprinkled on top. Just thinking about it makes my stomach rumble. I was so wrapped up in writing during my break that I forgot to eat.

I sigh and head to the football table, where they promptly hand over the money. “Nice doing business with you, boys,” I say before flouncing off, feeling Ryker’s eyes on me the entire time.

What’s his deal with me?

I mean, you’d think he’d want to avoid me because of the article, but it’s as if his mission is to be around me as much as he can. In fact, I’m not even sure he knew who I was before I wrote it since we don’t run in the same circles. I suspect he’s torturing me.

I push him out of my head and walk over to a table that needs bussing, picking up half-empty soda glasses and putting them on my tray. The door chimes, signaling that someone has come in, and I raise my head to see—

Whoa.

I freeze.

Bring out the angels and cue the hallelujah chorus.

Now that’s the kind of man I should be writing sexy scenes about.

Standing at the door is Connor Dimpleshitz—yes, his surname is unfortunate, but his IQ makes up for it. I’ve been crushing on him since our sociology class last semester.

Framed by a golden halo of sunlight as it glints through the windows, I decide he’s what would happen if Albert Einstein and Henry Cavill had a baby. “A hot genius. The perfect unicorn,” I murmur to myself.

I chew on my lip, debating on whether to mosey up to him and say hi or hide.

Hide wins. I know, I’m a little ridiculous, especially since we have calculus together this semester and he’ll obviously see me at some point in class.

But then I’ll have good hair and ketchup-free clothes.

I quickly survey the possibilities for my escape as the hostess seats him in another server’s section. My eyes land on the right side of the restaurant, where I could make a mad dash for the kitchen, but he’s bound to see me darting since I’d have to walk past him. Plus, I want to hang around and watch him without him knowing.

I come to a decision. Wrangling the tray of half-empty sodas I cleared, I quickstep it over to the back left corner, the farthest away from the double doors of the entrance. I maneuver my body into an awkward hunkering position behind a huge potted plant with wide fan-shaped leaves. At least five feet tall with a gnarly brown trunk, the green monster is perfect camouflage.

I peek around a big leaf that’s in dire need of a good dusting,judging by the motes floating around. Feeling paranoid that someone is a witness to my absurdity, I throw a quick glance over my shoulder to make sure no one’s around.

Ryker. Shit.

He’s staring at me from the football table, and there’s a glint in his gaze, as if he’s wondering what I’m doing.

I scowl and stick my tongue out at him. He makes me feel so rebellious and flustered and…excited.

I can’t even stop myself. Ugh.

His expression deepens in amusement, and I grimace, realizing my butt is sticking out. His annoying eyebrow jacks up and says, What the hell are you doing?

With eye telepathy I tell him to mind his own freaking business.

I pointedly turn my back on him and focus on The Unicorn.

A few seconds later, a familiar deep voice resonates from behind me, making me start. “You look a little flustered, Penelope. Spying on someone for your next story, perhaps?”

I freeze. Blink. His voice is husky and lower than before when he was calling me garçon, the tone reminding me of languid summer nights under a starry Southern sky while he gives me deep, passionate kisses—

Good Lord.Stop your daydreaming.Must. Stop. Reading. Romances.

I heave out a sigh and turn around to face Ryker.

What the hell does he want now?

***

“I don’t submit to the Wildcat Weekly anymore,” I say.

I worked for them most of last year, covering the home games and a few random articles. With a dad who was in the NFL, I know a lot about football, but when Sugar’s offered me more hours, I took it.

“No more football stories, huh?”

I shrug, my gaze taking in his chiseled cheekbones, the curve of his full lips, the hint of scruff on his jaw. Dammit, why is he so gorgeous? “What can I say? I covered the most fascinating story last semester—you. Guess I went out on a high note.”

He nods, taking that dig. “I always noticed you at the games.”

I scoff. “I didn’t think girls like me were on your radar.”

“You sat near the third row at the fifty-yard line taking notes at every home game.” His eyes drift over me. “And I didn’t say you were on my radar.”

“Really? Sounds like you did.”

“Trust me, I have more discriminating tastes.” He shrugs.

“Why, how sweet of you.” My Southern accent has thickened, the way it does when I’m sassy. It’s one thing to know he doesn’t like me, but for him to say I’m not up to his standards…well. “Did you pop over here just to be nice?”

He exhales and rakes a hand through his hair, calling attention to the lighter strands that have been bleached by the sun. “Honestly, I’m not sure why I came over here.” A conflicted expression crosses his face as he tugs at his collar. My eyes stare at the myriad of curly blond chest hairs that are poking out from the V-neck of the light blue Oxford he’s wearing with the sleeves rolled up to his elbows. “I just wanted to make sure you were okay from the ketchup getting all over you, but everything I’m saying is coming out wrong.”

Oh. This is different. And not what I expected.

“I’m fine, Baby Llama. No need to worry. You can go. Your girlfriends are waiting for you.” I tilt my head back toward the football table.

He doesn’t budge. “Baby Llama?” An amused grin flashes over his face.

I shrug. It’s been my private nickname for him since sophomore year when I stumbled upon him coming out of an upstairs bathroom at the Tau house after a shower with only a white towel wrapped around his trim waist. Some jersey chaser was with him. His hairy chest had both shocked my virgin sensibilities and excited me at the same time. The unruly curls just made him seem more naked, as if I’d seen his cock. Much to my dismay, I’d later dream about rolling around on that bed of golden curls. Seriously, who takes a shower with a chick in the middle of a kegger? Ryker Voss, that’s who. Because he can. And girls do whatever he wants.

But not this one.

I respect the game—even love it—but I don’t fall for football players, especially high and mighty quarterbacks who think they walk on water. My dad was the star player at Waylon twenty years ago, and trust me, I know how they operate. They get what they want and then they walk out, leaving broken hearts everywhere.

“Have you ever seen a real llama?” he asks, continuing our conversation. It’s as if he’s actually trying to be nice. “I saw one at a safari park once. Little bugger tried to eat my hand off when I fed him, but he was cute. Maybe you need a poster of one in your room so when you see it, you’ll think about me. I’ll even sign it for you.”

And there’s the cocky again.

“Buy me one. I’ll throw darts at it.”

“Damn, you never stop.” He huffs out a laugh, his eyes lingering on my neck. “Oh, there’s a bit of ketchup here too,” he says, reaching out to glide his finger across the top of my collar, his knuckles barely brushing against my neck.

The feather-light touch is brief and not sexual, yet my body hums, tendrils of sparks racing over my skin. I suck in a breath and catch his scent, warm and spicy with hints of leather and sandalwood.

He blinks and clears his throat. “Um, I actually have this cleaner stuff that I spray on my practice clothes. It’s a miracle worker. You’re welcome to borrow it. Of course, you’d have to come by the football dorm to pick it up. We could even do laundry together if you wanted?”

He says the words softly, as if they’re nothing,and I’m staring at him full on.

Do our laundry together?

I suspect Ryker Voss is flirting with me, though not well. The pimply-faced checkout boy at Big Star has better lines than this.

Yet…

Something warm grows inside my stomach and then flutters around, the sputtering of newborn butterflies. He is the hottest guy on campus. Still, I remind myself he’s a player, gather my resolve, and shoot those butterflies down.

“You’re being weird, Ryker.”

“Because I’m being nice? Yeah. New year, new start. I want to forget all the bad stuff from last semester.” He pauses. “And the article you wrote.”

“Is that right? Even the part where I said you dishonored the sport and were a disgrace to college players everywhere?”

He stares down at his hands. “I had my reasons for what happened.”

So I heard. He got involved in the fighting to help his friend and fellow teammate Maverick save his disabled sister.

“Ah, well, I did write a follow-up article, but it wasn’t nearly as popular as the first one.”

He shrugs, and somehow, he’s closer now. I stare into his thickly lashed cerulean eyes and blink at the force of them. His irises…God, someone should name a crayon after them.

“So…do you want to do laundry together sometime?”

This again? My mouth parts. “What? Like a date?”

“Yeah.”

I blink rapidly, my brain trying to wrap about this new Ryker. “No. I’m sure you already have jersey chasers lined up outside your dorm vying to do your laundry. I’ve heard they actually beg to rub your shoulders and do your homework. I imagine they even fight to be the one to suck your sweet little toes.” I come to an abrupt halt. Suck his toes? SUCK HIS TOES? OMG. Where did that random comment come from? I don’t have a foot fetish. I blame it on his presence and carry on. “And don’t worry about me—I don’t need your laundry advice. A little ketchup never hurt anyone.”

Determination crosses his face and with a flurry of movement, he drops a small piece of paper onto the tray I’m holding.

I stare down at it. Sexy as Hell Athlete is written in masculine handwriting with a phone number after it. I look back up at him, my eyes tracing the enigmatic half-smile on his face.

“I wrote it down for you earlier and wanted to give it to you after the ketchup thing, but I chickened out.”

Several seconds go by.

“Will you give me yours?” he asks after a few moments of us just standing here.

“My what?”

“Number.” He grins.

I indicate the tray and my obvious impediment. “I don’t have any paper on me.”

“Just tell me. I’ll remember.”

I’m flustered, and that’s the only reason I rattle off my phone number. He grins and repeats it back to me.

He lowers his voice in a conspiratorial way. “So…you’re watching someone, I take it. Anyone I know?”

Feeling bemused by his attention, I shake my head, quickly losing control of this situation.

“For a writer, you seem to be at a loss for words. Do I make you speechless, Penelope?”

I scoff. “No.”

“I’m curious as to what has your attention back here.” He slides in next to me behind the plant, his shoulder brushing against mine. He’s a giant next to my slender frame, and all at once, I feel protected and safe, which is entirely wrong. It’s probably his male pheromones, lulling me into softness before the kill—and damn if it isn’t working. He murmurs something about us hiding together and spying on people, but I’m distracted because my face is up close and personal with the chest hair that pokes out of his shirt. I want to trail my fingers through it and see if it’s as soft as it looks. He smells like alpha male and sex. Hard, passionate sex that makes you orgasm fast and furious.

Not that I have any firsthand knowledge of that, of course, but I have my fantasies.

Gird your loins, Penelope.

Resist the quarterback.

But I’m getting sucked in.

I blame it on the dimple that appears when he smiles. My stomach does that fluttering thing again, and this time, I can’t shoo the butterflies away. I’m weak. I move my eyes up the strong column of his tanned throat to meet his gaze. At least ten seconds go by as we take each other in.

What. Is. Happening?

“You’re pretty,” he murmurs. “Have I ever told you that?”

“We don’t usually talk except for when I take your order.”

His hand reaches up and briefly touches a piece of my hair that’s fallen out of my topknot. He rubs it between his fingers. “Your hair…it’s—”

“Auburn,” I manage, clearing my throat.

“It reminds me of a new penny, the way the amber color catches the light…” His voice trails off, and he bites his bottom lip. “God, that has to be the stupidest thing I’ve ever said.”

“You have worse lines. Tell me, is doing laundry code for sex?” I say, staring up at him. I’m itching to straighten my glasses, a nervous reflex, but my hands are holding the tray.

“I only use lines on jersey chasers. You’re the kind of girl I have to work for.”

“What about your discriminating tastes?”

“Pure bluff. I think we have a real connection, Penelope.” His face is closer now, and I swallow, wondering how we must look to everyone else in the restaurant. I realize that in the process of talking, we’ve backed up to the wall behind the plant, and I figure the only table we’re visible to is the football one, but I don’t tear my eyes away from Ryker to check.

“You smell like rainbows,” he says.

My chest rises. I’m enjoying his full-court press. It’s…intoxicating. “What does a rainbow smell like?”

“Sweet and delicious.”

“It’s the suckers.” His eyes land on my lips, and it almost feels as if he’s touched them. Heat rushes over my skin. “The red ones are my favorite. I think they’re cherry or strawberry or raspberry…definitely not cranberry…that’s disgusting,” I say, rambling, feeling disoriented.

“It’s crazy, but I really want to kiss you right now,” he murmurs.

My eyes drift over his shoulder to where Connor’s table is. I can’t see his face, but I know he’s there, and even though I’m drugged by Ryker’s proximity, I remind myself he’s the one I should kiss.

Not Ryker.

Ryker is a player—just like my dad was.

He watches the direction of my gaze and follows it. “You’ve been watching Dimples hitz, haven’t you?” he says, a frown line appearing on his forehead. “Are you into him?”

My stomach dips. “Why would you say that?”

“Because you hightailed it over here when he walked in and you’ve been hiding ever since. So, I figure he either did you wrong or you’re infatuated, and since I haven’t heard any gossip about you and him, I’m guessing you must have a thing for him.”

Abort! Abort!He knows too much!

Sanity slowly returns to my brain in small increments, and I take a deep breath, orienting myself as questions race through my head. What if he uses my crush against me? Maybe he wants revenge for the article. I don’t know!

Flustered and unsure, my eyes dart around the restaurant, looking for an exit so I don’t have to answer his question.

My gaze lands on the football table he came from, and I notice Archer watching us with focused interest, a calculating look on his face as he whips his eyes from me to Ryker. He leans over and whispers to Blaze, who turns to peer in our direction. I pause, my brain analyzing and decoding. Why is Archer suddenly interested in what Ryker is doing over here with me—especially when there’s a pretty co-ed sitting right next to him, tracing little circles on his bicep?

Yet Archer’s eagle eyes are onus. Watchful.

I notice all three players at the table have suddenly given us their attention, anticipation evident on their faces.

Alarms go off in my head and things start to click into place.

How nice he was to me. How we ‘have a connection’. Yeah, right.

Mortification washes over me.

How could I not have seen it sooner?

God, I am an idiot.I was so distracted…

I’m a bet. A stupid freaking bet.

I feel like someone just punched me in the gut.

My survival instinct tells me to get away from Ryker, and obviously,I could just walk away and hold my head high, but I want to make a point and show those football players they can’t toy with me. I release the tray I’ve been balancing for what seems like days in his direction. The contents of the glasses spill out and crash to the floor, watered-down soda and ice drenching us before dripping down to the floor. The plastic glasses make a horrible clattering noise on the wooden floors, and I imagine most everyone in the restaurant heard it. I don’t look to see their faces. I only glare at Ryker.

He jumps back and stares down at the mess on his khaki pants then looks back at me. “Remind me to never bring up Dimpleshitz again.”

“Stop your games, Ryker.”

His face stills. “What games?”

My teeth snap together. Enough.

 

Love football heroes and nerdy heroines?

Start the series of standalones today with I DARE YOU

i dare you

Download your copy now or Read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2Fn15ur

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/IDareYou

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/IDareYouHookUp

 

About the Author
Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and USA Today best-selling author Ilsa Madden-Mills writes about strong heroines and sexy alpha males that sometimes you just want to slap. She’s best known for her angsty, heartfelt new adult college romances.

A former high school English teacher, she adores all things Pride and Prejudice; Mr. Darcy is her ultimate hero.

She’s also addicted to frothy coffee beverages, Vampire Diaries, and any kind of book featuring unicorns and sword-wielding females.

Join her Unicorn Girls FB group for special excerpts, prizes, and snarky fun!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/ilsasunicorngirls/

Ilsa Logo

Connect with Ilsa

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorilsamaddenmills/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ilsamaddenmills

BookBub: http://bit.ly/2OE8TwZ
Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2k6L96J
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2jjRzlD

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ilsamaddenmills/

Stay up to date with Ilsa by joining her mailing list: http://bit.ly/2MkYqK4
Website: http://www.ilsamaddenmills.com/