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Car Crash (Collision Series #2) by T. Gephart Blog Tour with Review

10 Feb

Today we are celebrating the release of CAR CRASH by T. Gephart! This is a contemporary romance, standalone title that you won’t want to miss! This novel is part of T. Gephart’s Collision Series. Check out some teasers for the book below!

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Available Now

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Sign up for T. Gephart’s Newsletter for exclusive news about her titles.

CAR CRASH by T. Gephart (Collision Series, #2)

Available Now

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Apple Books | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

 

 

Synopsis:

Kitty was not only beautiful but also incredibly intelligent—except when it came to relationships. It seemed if a guy was a loser, corrupt, deadbeat or unavailable, she was completely and utterly attracted to him. She definitely had a “type,” and all of them had been one bad decision after another.

Dallas had trouble of his own. Finding women wasn’t a problem—he could charm the pants off almost anyone—but most of those “pantless” women ended up being a few bananas short of a fruit basket. Not always the best candidates for his sex-without-strings philosophy. He was one date away from ending up a 60 Minutes special.

While both of them were at the top of their game professionally—she a high-powered executive assistant, and he one of the best tattooists in the city—their personal lives had become a dumpster fire.

No one in their right mind would have suggested they join forces to help each other wade through the crazy. Surely that was a recipe for disaster? But without reason, logic or even sanity on their side, they decided to do it anyway.

It was a hot mess primed for a head-on collision.




Christie’s Review

5 STARS

A Top Romantic Comedy of 2019

I can always count on T. Gephart to give me a book that I fall in love with. Car Crash is no different. It has everything I love in a T. Gephart novel…great characters, a great storyline, packed full of romance, spice, and humor!!!

Kitty and Dallas are those special characters full of color and life that just jump off the pages of the book. Kitty is beautiful, sassy, and intelligent. Despite those qualities, her dating life is a disaster. If a loser is anywhere in the vicinity of Kitty, she will find him. Needless to say, she has axed the idea of ever having a serious relationship.

Dallas is sexy, extremely artistic, and much more intelligent than her gives himself credit for. He loves women…all kinds of them…but with no commitment. As much as he thinks he knows  women, he really is clueless.

Dallas and Kitty did have one-night together, and it was spectacular. Somehow, they have remained friends. They come up with the bright idea to help each other out. She will help him decipher women, helping him avoid the crazies. In return, he will help her avoid the losers. What could possibly go wrong with this fail-proof plan, especially when they find it harder and harder to resist each other?

I haven’t had this much fun watching two people fall for one another in a LONG time. There are some really steamy moments as well as some very tender ones as well. They are great as friends which makes them even better as more!!!! Both of them have HUGE personalities. I loved seeing the deeper parts of their personalities which were revealed the more time they spent together.

I was in need of a book that would leave me with a big smile on my face, and T. Gephart definitely did that. I’m not surprised though. She is an incredibly talented writer who gives me an original story with characters I never forget!!!!




ADD CAR CRASH TO GOODREADS

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AUTHOR INFORMATION:

 

T Gephart is a USA Today and International bestselling author from Melbourne, Australia.

With an approach to life that is somewhat unconventional, she prefers to fly by the seat of her pants rather than adhere to some rigid roadmap. Her lack of “plan” has resulted in a rather interesting and eclectic resume, which reads more like the fiction she writes than an actual employment history. She’d tell you all about it, but the statute of limitations hasn’t expired yet. But all those crazy twists and turns have led her to a career she loves—writing romantic comedy.

When she isn’t filling pages with sassy and sexy characters with attitude, she’s living her own reality show in the ‘burbs of Melbourne with her American husband, two teenage children, and her fur child—Woodley.

She loves adventure, to laugh, travel, and strives to live her life to the fullest.

AUTHOR LINKS:

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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

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https://amzn.to/2SPLHOK

Also available on Kindle Unlimited

 

Meet The Author

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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/

Jock Rule by Sara Ney (JOCK HARD #2) by Sara Ney Review Tour

8 Dec

 

 

 

 

 

Kip Carmichael is no pretty boy.

He’s a rough. Dirty. Giant. Hair so unruly, and a beard so thick, his friends on the team call him Sasquatch.

The first time Sasquatch lays eyes on Theodora “Teddy” Johnson across the keg at a party one night on Jock Row, she’d been relegated to the sidelines by her jock hungry “friends.”

Week-after-week, he watches beautiful but bashful Teddy getting overshadowed, and overlooked. Sasquatch finally broad shoulders his way through the crowd, offering to to be her hairy godmother. But the minute their eyes meet? He’s a goner.

Teaching her the RULES for winning a jock will be the easy part. Not falling in love with her is going to be a losing game.

 




Christie’s Review

5 STARS

A Top Read in Romantic Comedy

Sara Ney has given her readers another sweet, sexy, and funny romance!!!!

Kip and Teddy couldn’t be more opposite from one another. He tends to stand out in a crowd. He is well over 6 feet tall and his beard makes him look like Sasquatch. Teddy is a sweet girl, and she tends to not stand out like her friends whose mission in life is to snag a jock. As soon as Kip sees her, he knows she is something special and doesn’t belong at these “jock” parties. After weeks of watching her, he approaches, and he is quite surprised she isn’t intimidated by him or his size. The two strike up an unlikely friendship with him offering to be her “hairy godmother” and help her feel comfortable in her own skin. Neither one ever realize how complicated this friendship is about to become…..

Ney has a way of pulling me in heart and soul into her books. This one is no different. I was completely immersed in Kip and Teddy’s story. They were both characters that were unique and very likeable. Kip is somewhat like the beast in Beauty and the Beast. Although, he isn’t unattractive like the beast. However, it’s his demeanor that scares people off. He doesn’t have any friends except for his sister and now, Teddy. I could understand why he shunned people, and I was so glad that he knew pretty much from the beginning that Teddy was worthy of his trust.

Of course, Teddy is somewhat like Beauty even though people overlook her beauty, except Kip. He has an uncanny ability to see through people’s pretensions and see them for who they are. He instantly knows Teddy is a good person. She might seem a bit shy, but she doesn’t have a problem not letting Kip get away with his “stuff.” She is independent, smart, and she sees past all of Kip’s defensiveness, wearing down his resistance day by day, even if she doesn’t realize it.  

One of my favorite things in the book was the banter between these two. They are pretty funny together, and once the sexual tension is introduced….whoa the butterflies. Ney really knows how to use that to her advantage, and she is an expert at it. She seems to know exactly when her characters need to finally give in. That is just one of her many talents as a writer!

I have only discovered Sara Ney this year, and my only disappointment is I hadn’t discovered her sooner. Not only do I love the stories she spins and the unforgettable characters, but I really like her style of writing. She never overuses angst. In the books I have read, there really isn’t a lot of that. They are about finding your soulmate and falling in love! If you haven’t read anything by her, I highly recommend you try one of her books. If you are like me, you will find her becoming one of your very favorite authors!!!!




 

Purchase Links

 

 

 

 

Sara Ney is the USA Today Bestselling Author of the How to Date a Douchebag series, and is best known for her sexy, laugh-out-loud New Adult romances. Among her favorite vices, she includes: iced latte’s, historical architecture and well-placed sarcasm. She lives colorfully, collects vintage books, art, loves flea markets, and fancies herself British.

She lives with her husband, children, and her ridiculously large dog.

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Newsletter | Website

 

 

Tequila Tequila by Emma Hart Blog Tour with Review & Excerpt

20 Nov

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Tequila + you best friend + your bedroom = um, whoopsie?

Tequila Tequila, an all-new hilarious standalone romantic comedy from New York Times bestselling author Emma Hart is available NOW!

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Don’t sleep with your best friend.

Take it from me. I did it. And it was awful.

I-wish-the-tequila-made-me-forget kind of bad.

The problem is, Luke has forgotten. He swears that he can’t remember a thing about that night beyond the trays of tequila shots being set on the tables.

Except I can’t forget. I can’t forget how good his hands felt until I fell over and hit my hip on the dresser, and I sure as hell can’t forget the entire two minutes of tap-tap-squirt.

Awkward. Embarrassing. And the new subject of a couple of dirty lucid dreams.

But I have no intention of telling him what we did. Nothing good comes from telling your best friend he’s the worst guy you’ve ever slept with.

Which makes the tequila on my birthday a very, very bad idea…

 




Christie’s Review

5 STARS

A Top Read in Romantic Comedy

Oh my goodness, this has to be one of my favorite romantic comedies of 2018!!!!

As Hart writes in her synopsis, “Tequila + Your Best Friend + Your Bedroom= Um. Whoopsie?”

That is exactly what happened one drunken night between Aspen and Luke. It should be easy to forget, especially since it wasn’t any good. Yet, they can’t even though they both are acting like neither one remembers it. Instead of putting it behind them, it seems to open up feelings they never thought they would have for one another. What ensues is a funny, heartwarming, and sexy read!

Hart always creates these larger than life and quirky characters, and the ones in this book are just as good! Oh my God, Luke’s family deserve an entire series written about them, especially his Abuelita!!! I want to be her when I grow up!

One of the things I loved most about these two is the friendship they have shared all these years. They really are an extension of one another and complete one another. They were both down to earth and so funny! Their banter is the centerpiece of the book and their relationship, and I loved that it was told from each of their POVs. I fell in love with both of them….I mean head over heels. I loved each awkward, sweet, silly, and sexy moment they shared!!!!

I can always count on Emma Hart to give me a sexy yet sweet story with great characters and a ton of laughs. Tequila Tequila was no different!!! She gave me all the things I love about her, and it’s all those things that make her one of my very favorite writers!!!! If you haven’t discovered the force that is Emma Hart, what are you waiting for!!!!!




 

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Download your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2xhhpf8

AppleBooks: https://apple.co/2NPmWCU

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

Nook: http://bit.ly/2Ooi0lv

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2pbcU11

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

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Excerpt:

Have you ever walked into a store and had to ask where the lady section is?”

I paused, my grip on the fridge door firm, and turned to him. I simply blinked. I wasn’t going to justify that with an answer.

“It took three people before a poor woman at the customer service desk took pity on me and walked me to the tampon aisle,” he went on, oblivious to my death stare. “She hovered over me for a second and I started fucking sweating, Aspen. Sweating.”

I bit my lip and moved the ingredients for his sandwich over to the board on the island.

“I almost dropped my phone trying to find the photo you sent me, and when I finally brought it up, I was so fucking confused I stood there like a lame damn duck for five minutes before she came back to help me like she knew I was a total idiot.”

Was it wrong that I was way more amused about this than anything else? A part of me told me I should feel bad, but…

“Did you know there are tons of those things? The boxes are all different. There are different brands. Different sizes. Different… absorbency levels.” He shuddered, his wide, muscled shoulders shaking with his cringey thought. “For flows and stuff.”

“I shop there regularly. I am aware.”

“Not that fucking regularly if you sent me to buy them,” he muttered. “Anyway, the nice lady who was trying her best not to laugh at the idiot in the sanitary products aisle asked me who I was buying them for. My mom, my sister, my girlfriend…”

I chopped the lettuce.

“When I told her it was for my best friend, she looked at me funny for a minute before nodding. Then, she dragged me over to the aisle with the candy and told me that Twizzlers went well with tampons. I was so confused I didn’t question her, so here.” He lifted a small bag from the stool next to him and tossed it in my direction. “You’re the proud owner of eight packets of Twizzlers.”

“Oooh, Twizzlers!” I dropped the knife and dove into the bag, pulling out all the long, red packets. “This is like heaven!”

“Dude.” Luke leaned forward and held his hands out. “My sandwich?”

“Geez, who’s on their period? You or me?” I put the candy down and went back to making his sandwich. “You should have saved the Twizzlers until after you got your food.”

“Rookie mistake.” He shook his head. “Please don’t ever ask me to buy you tampons again. I’m not sure my ego or reputation can take it.”

“Your reputation got shot to shit on your twenty-first when you mooned the mayor in the town square,” I reminded him.

“And I haven’t mooned anyone since,” he replied. “My pants now stay firmly on when I drink.”

About Emma Hart

Emma Hart is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over thirty novels and has been translated into several different languages.

She is a mother, wife, lover of wine, Pink Goddess, and valiant rescuer of wild baby hedgehogs.

Emma prides herself on her realistic, snarky smut, with comebacks that would make a PMS-ing teenage girl proud.

Yes, really. She’s that sarcastic.

EmmaHart

Connect with Emma

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EmmaHartBooks/

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

BookBub: http://bit.ly/2Dr0atq

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2Dq42ez

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2EBbZNe

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2D91d3T

Stay up to date with Emma by joining her mailing list: https://www.emmahart.org/newsletter

Website: https://www.emmahart.org/home

 

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

7 Nov

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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!

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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!!!!




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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.

 

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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.

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Flirting with Fire ((Blue Collar Brothers #1) Review Tour! This is a MUST READ!

16 Sep

 

 

 

 

 

Everyone knows that if you play with fire you’ll end up getting burned…

What happens when you attend a first responder’s bachelor auction with your best friends? Well, if your name is Madison Kelly like me, your friends end up bidding on a date for you with your high school crush.

That’s right. Even back when I was ‘Fatty Maddie’ to all my classmates, I had eyes for the quarterback of our football team. Not like I was the only one.

Mauro Bianco may fight fires for a living, but he still sets my heart ablaze. One look at the rugged, muscular man he’s turned into and I want to slide down his pole.

One date. That’s all I’m committed to. A few hours and I can tuck him back into that tattered old shoebox in my closet.

As always, the universe has other plans. I never would’ve predicted that in a matter of days he’d turn from my dream guy into my enemy.

ADD TO GOODREADS



 

Christie’s Review

5 ++++ STARS

Flirting with Fire by Piper Rayne was a book that grabbed me from the beginning with the special note from our favorite fireman, Mauro. I knew then he would own my heart. It didn’t take long for Madison to own my heart too! These two definitely belonged together even if it took them years to accomplish it, and I loved watching these two fall hard for one another.

This is one of my top ten reads of 2018 for romcoms and an all-time favorite! Madison was so incredibly easy to relate to. I have read so many books about the smart girl in high school who was in love with the jock, only for him not to notice her. She grows up and becomes a success and wants vengeance on her crush. However, that isn’t how this book goes at all as you will soon discover.

The chemistry between these two is evident, but their first date doesn’t go as planned. This is the point where Madison gained my respect and admiration. She is nothing like Mauro expected, but he won’t discover that until a bit later. It won’t be long until she has him under her spell.

As I wrote earlier, Madison is a woman many of us girls can relate to. She wasn’t popular in school, and she carries some of those self-confidence issues into adulthood with her despite the incredible woman she has grown into. Luckily, Mauro does everything he can to assure her of her beauty both inside and out.

Speaking of Mauro, he is pretty much perfect. He is an adonis, but it’s his heart that is his greatest asset. Madison describes perfectly who he is:

No one would blame me if I passed out right now because he really is the perfect specimen of a man, right down to his heart of gold.

As much as I loved the characters, I loved the storyline as well. The pacing was perfect, never rushed. The development of their romance was slow, with little sexual innuendos thrown in building the tension until that final moment when they couldn’t resist each other anymore. It really was the perfect combination of sexy and sweet.

Underneath the romance was the theme of never judging someone too harshly before learning what is underneath the surface. Mauro never got to know who Madison was in high school and was sorry for that. Mauro is often underestimated. Because of his looks, people, especially women, consider him not too intelligent. Madison idolized him in high school, with much of that based on his looks. Now, she is getting to really know him and is falling for him because of the man he is, not who she thought he was. Most of the time we see that label attached to beautiful women, so it was an interesting twist seeing that label attached to a gorgeous man.

The icing on the cake was the addition of the secondary characters: Madison’s friends, Lauren and Vanessa, and Mauro’s brothers, Cristian and Luca. Each couple will get there own book, and it all centers around the bachelor’s auction just like it did with Madison and Mauro! The authors give us just enough about each of them to whet our appetite for more. I, for one, will anxiously awaiting the next book in the series!



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Excerpt

My brothers widen their stances, share a look of amusement and cock their eyebrows at me.

“Hate to break it to you, but Maddie didn’t bid on you. Lauren did.” Luca laughs while Cristian chuckles.

“I’m going out with a Madison and she didn’t go to our high school. Which reminds me.” I pull out my phone.

“Maddie is Madison, you idiot,” Luca says. “Her and Lauren were my year.”

“I went to high school with Madison?” I try to let her face come back to me, and though I can picture her bright blue eyes and long chestnut hair, nothing about her is familiar from high school.

“Yes, but she definitely wasn’t hanging out at the bonfires and football pep rallies.” Luca grabs his helmet off his bike. The only responsible thing I’ve seen him do in the last few years.

“Well, shit and she doesn’t even want to go out with me? Her friend bid on me?”

Luca straddles his bike with a grin. I look over to Cristian, but he’s putting his shirt back on and starts fiddling with his earbuds. They obviously think this conversation is over.

“Yeah, but we’re all in the same boat.” Cristian’s thumb moves over his phone screen. “Maddie’s awesome and I think you’ll have a good time with her.”

“She seemed pretty quiet and way too accommodating,” I say.

Luca kicks his stand up, letting the bike rock a little under him.

Cristian’s hands freeze on the screen of his phone. “And that’s bad?” he asks.

“I want a woman who knows what she wants. Has her own damn opinions. Doesn’t just agree with everything I say.”

Cristian peeks over his shoulder, a look of amusement that matches Luca’s. “You want a girl to come up and grab your nuts?”

“I want a girl who knows what her favorite food is, has an opinion about where she wants to go for dinner, likes whatever sports team she likes and doesn’t default to my favorites.” I stuff my hands into my pockets, digging out my keys for my truck.

“Well then, Maddie might not be the one. Like I said, she’s nice.” Cristian slaps me on the shoulder. “Treat her good though, okay?” He inserts one earbud.

“What do you think I’m going to do, leave her in Garfield Park?”

He puts his other earbud in. “That’s not even funny man. I have a friend in that district and the shit that goes down there…” He shakes his head.

Cristian loses the entire point of my statement—the fact I’m not a jackass. I’m not Luca.

“It’s one date,” I say. “And who knows, maybe she’s nice but still has a wild streak.”

Christian again glances over to Luca who’s smiling like he’s fucking Mickey Mouse.

“Well, good luck on your date,” he says.

Cristian jogs away and Luca’s bike starts up.

I head to my truck.

The conversation is over, but I’m curious now.

Where’s my damn yearbook?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Piper Rayne, or Piper and Rayne, whichever you prefer because we’re not one author, we’re two. Yep, you get two USA Today Bestselling authors for the price of one. Our goal is to bring you romance stories that have “Heartwarming Humor With a Side of Sizzle” (okay…you caught us, that’s our tagline). A little about us… We both have kindle’s full of one-clickable books. We’re both married to husbands who drive us to drink. We’re both chauffeurs to our kids. Most of all, we love hot heroes and quirky heroines that make us laugh, and we hope you do, too.

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