Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Review: A Family Affair by ReShonda Tate Billingsley

A Family Affair
Title: A Family Affair (Click on Link for Synopsis)
Author: ReShonda Tate Billingsley
Publisher/Publication Date: Gallery Books, July 30, 2013
Format/Source:  E-ARC, Edelweiss

 My Thoughts

If you’re looking for a fictional novel filled with well-developed, diverse characters and family drama, then A Family Affair by ReShonda Tate Billingsley is the book for you.  It’s a realistic story that highlights how lies, money, and power can lead to more problems.
Bernard Wells had an affair with Lorraine that resulted in—a child, Olivia. After Adele Wells, his wife, found out she gave Lorraine a lump sum of money and forbade Bernard from having any further contact with the two of them.  As a result of having a lack of funds, Olivia grew up having dreams that she could not pursue. She learned her father’s identity just prior to her mother’s death. Olivia was on a quest to find answers. And as she searched for answers, there were a series of revelations that caused the key players to deal with  unresolved issues from their past and inner conflicts while facing the truth.
In A Family Affair, Billingsley presents the perfect example of the effect that money and power can have on relationships. We meet Bernard Wells whose desire for wealth outweighed following his heart.  His web of lies caused so many people unnecessary pain. He was just so self-righteous and when he knew in his heart that he was wrong, he used money to fix it. Bernard Wells was a prime example of a man playing the blame game, and not really looking in the mirror to own up to his personal faults. Adele Wells used money and her family’s status in society to get whatever she wanted. Yeah, money could buy her a lot of things, but back to reality—could she really buy her husband’s love? At first glance, Adele Wells seemed callous and unlikable, but as the story unfolded I began to understand the underlying issues that affected her attitude. I loved the portrayal of Kendall, the Wells’ son, who experienced the effects of growing up in a dysfunctional family with money. He was surprisingly candid about the important things in life and oh, so wise.  As for Olivia, she was looking for answers, but she would soon learn the harsh reality that some of the answers she sought might not be the truth that she was looking for.
This is the first book that I’ve read by ReShonda Tate Billingsley, and it definitely won’t be the last. The book was well-written and had diverse characters. It was also a real page turner that encompassed important life lessons.
Rating 5/5
I received an e-arc of A Family Affair by ReShonda Tate Billingsley from Edelweiss for an honest review, thank-you.


Sunday, July 28, 2013

Release Day Blitz: Play Me (Take a Chance #3) by Diane Alberts

Title: Play Me (Take a Chance #3)
Author:  Diane Albers
Publisher, Publication Date: Entangled Publishing,  July 29, 2013

Even the best-laid plans can go awry. 

Single-mom Kiersten Worth knows a bottle of champagne and night of hot, no-strings-attached sex is the perfect solution to her jilted bride blues…and Garrett Kelly, long-time friend and her teenaged son’s sexy basketball coach, is just the stud for the job. 

Garrett wants more from the elusive temptress than a casual affair, but he never expects it to come in the form of an unexpected pregnancy. When he proposes an unorthodox solution—move in and raise their baby together—Kiersten has to decide whether to let down her guard and open her heart to the man who secretly loved her for years, or risk losing his tender embrace for good.


     Three months, two weeks, one day, and nineteen hours.
     That’s how long it had been since Garrett walked away from Kiersten. She barely even spoke to him anymore, other than a soft hello as they passed on the court after practices. It was probably better that way. Anything more than a brief encounter hurt too much. He’d spent most of his life pretending not to care about her. Pretending he was fine without her. But now that he’d had one night in her arms, he knew he wasn’t.
     And he wanted her more than he could ever possibly describe.
     Oh well. Tough shit. He wasn’t going to get her on his terms. And he wouldn’t accept hers. 
     He needed a drink. Or three.
     He unlocked the door to his apartment and froze. Pots clanged in the kitchen. Dropping his gym bag to the carpet, he walked around the corner. Only his buddy Mike had a copy of his key, and that was just in case of an emergency or if he somehow lost his own set. But why would Mike let himself in and then cook? To the best of his knowledge, Mike didn’t even know how to cook.
     “Mike?” he called out.
     “Uh, no,” Kiersten replied. “It’s me.”
     He tensed and walked slowly into his kitchen, his heart beating rapidly in his ears. “How did you get in here?”
     She flushed. “I asked Mike for the key. Told him I needed something for Chris to practice at home.” She waved a hand. “He didn’t question me, thank God. My story was weak.”
     He studied her. “Why are you here? You could have just knocked.”
     “I was worried you wouldn’t let me in,” she said softly, averting her eyes. “So I took matters into my own hands.”
     “And the dinner?”
     “A way to try to make up for what I did. It’s pathetic and not big enough, I know, but I had to do something.”
     He raised his brows. “You could give me space, like I asked. Why cook for me? What do you want?”
     She looked at him. “I thought you might like to eat some food. Last time I checked, you were human.”
     “It’s been over three months since we talked or hung out.” He crossed his arms over his chest, not sure what her sudden reemergence in his life meant. What game did she play? “And last time I checked, we weren’t really on speaking terms. Yet here you are. Cooking me dinner.”
     “Yep.” She set down the spoon she was stirring the sauce with, shoulders tight as she leaned on the counter. “Pretty much.”
     He looked away from her and swallowed hard. Did she realize how much it hurt him just to see her face or to hear her voice? Probably not, since he’d been the only idiot who had wanted more. Every woman paled in comparison to her. No matter how hard he tried to move on, to be attracted to another woman, there was only one person on his mind. Kiersten. But if she was here…
     He shoved his hands into his pockets. “Have you changed your mind about us?”
     She paled and he cursed himself for jumping to foolish, optimistic conclusions. “I—no, not yet. But—”
     “Then you need to leave,” he said. He raised his head and met her eyes, unwilling to back down. “I haven’t changed my mind, either. I need space.”
     “It’s been three months. Isn’t that enough space?”
     “No.” He drew in a ragged breath. “It’s not. Now please leave.”
     She bit her lip. “No.”
     “Yes.” He stalked toward her, picked her up, tossed her over his shoulder, and headed for the door. He tired not to remember that the last time he’d carried her like this, they’d been going up to her bedroom. “If you won’t walk out on your own, then I’ll carry you out.”
     She punched his back and squirmed. “Let me down. We need to talk.”
     “The time for talking is over. I need distance right now. Eventually we can be friends again. But for now?” He opened the door, set her in the hallway, and closed the door in her face. “Please go home.”
     He turned away and stomped into the kitchen. Damn it, he wasn’t doing this anymore. He may have played the part of the lovesick friend for months—hell, years—now, but he was done with being a benchwarmer she pulled out when it suited her mood.
     From now on, it needed to be a starting position for him…or nothing at all.
     Shutting off the stove, he picked up the pot and peeked inside. She’d made his favorite meal. Cheese ravioli. Vodka sauce bubbled away in a different pot and he could smell the garlic bread in the oven.
     “Listen, Garrett, we need to talk,” Kiersten said.
     Garrett jumped and faced her with a glare. “What are you doing in here—again?”
     “I have a key.” She waved a gold key under his nose, her nose tilted up in the air stubbornly. “And I know how to open a door on my own. I’ve been doing it since I was three.”
     “Congratulations.” He snatched the key out of her hand and reached for her, determined to put her right back where he had left her. “But you need to go. I’m serious.”
     She jumped out of his reach and sprinted behind the relative safety of his favorite chair. “Not until you listen to me. Sit down and shut up for a second, will you?”
     He pursued her, ready to stick her back out in the hallway, sans key this time. “All I asked for was a break. Can’t you respect that?”
     He bolted around the chair, reaching for her arm. Her eyes widened and she darted to the side when he feinted left and ran right, hoping to fool her into his arms. “I can’t leave until we talk,” she replied.
     “Why not?” he asked in exasperation, holding his hands up. “What could possibly be so damn important?”
      She blinked at him, wringing her hands. “I’m pregnant.”

     Diane Alberts has always been a dreamer with a vivid imagination, but it wasn't until 2011 that she put her pen where her brain was, and became a published author.  Since receiving her first contract offer, she has yet to stop writing. Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal clear water. She lives in Northeast Pennsylvania with her four kids, a husband, a schnauzer mutt, a cat, and a Senegal parrot. In the rare moments when she's not writing, she can usually be
found hunched over one knitting project or another.
     She is a multi-published, bestselling author with Entangled Publishing, Swoon Romance,
and Decadent Publishing. ON ONE CONDITION hit #18 on the Barnes and Noble Bestseller List, and TRY ME hit #76 on Amazon. CAPTIVATED BY YOU hit #31 on the Barnes and Noble bestseller list.  Her goal is to write so many fantastic books that even a non-romance book fan will know her name. She also writes New Adult books under the name Jen McLaughlin. Diane is represented by Louise Fury from the L. Perkins Agency.
Website  /Facebook Fan Page /Twitter /Goodreads  

Diane is offering up a $10 Gift Card to Amazon or B&N for one lucky reader.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

ARC Review: Famously Engaged by Robyn Thomas

Title:  Famously Engaged 
Author: Robyn Thomas
Publisher/Publication Date: Entangled Publishing, Indulgence, July 8, 2013
Source/Format:  Publisher, e-book
Genre: Contemporary Romance


A chef and a rock star. They couldn’t be from more different worlds…

Rock star royalty’s favorite son, Jake Olsen, couldn’t help but interfere after listening to his future brother-in-law talk non-stop about his ex-wife, Beth Carlisle. Jake decides that the only way to get the groom’s mind off his ex-wife is to give her a fake fiancĂ©.

Before Jake can convince Beth of his plan, he's forced to move in with her to avoid the paparazzi. Their instant attraction makes for a sizzling "first date", but soon Jake’s fame gets in the way and Beth wants out. Too bad Jake's figured out just why her ex is so obsessed with her, and he's afraid he's not going to be able to give her up either.

Now it's up to Jake to convince this chef together they make the perfect recipe.

My Thoughts

I liked the overall storyline of Famously Engaged by Robyn Thomas, but the progression of the plot from Jake’s ploy to cease Beth’s relationship with Brad to Jake and Beth developing feelings for each other happened rather fast.  Portraying Beth as being so willing to invite Jake into her home after he divulged a sketchy story about why he was there seemed a bit unrealistic. Although Beth was supposed to be a private person, it seemed that her common sense went out the window when “Famous Man” appeared.  I understand that it was possible for them to have an instant physical attraction, but their dialogue and interactions didn’t lead me to believe that they had an emotional connection after such a short period of time.  I also had a problem with Skyla being sent away on business while Jake was trying to convince Brad to forget about his ex-wife.  It seemed to only give Brad more time to focus on Beth.  At times Beth seemed a little desperate, especially when she discussed how once her fake engagement was over, she wanted her friends to help her find the perfect man.  Um, what happened to letting things happen naturally? Brad’s and Skyla’s roles seemed insignificant, and I was disappointed that they weren’t an integral part of the story.

Rating 3/5

I received a copy of Famously Engaged from the publisher for an unbiased review, thank you.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Trailer Reveal: Frigid by J. Lynn/Jennifer L. Armentrout

Title:  Frigid
Author:  J. Lynn, Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publisher/Publication Date:  Spencer Hill Contemporary, July 15, 2013

Frigid Synopsis

For twenty-one-year-old Sydney, being in love with Kyler isn’t anything new. They’d been best friends ever since he pushed her down on the playground and she made him eat a mud pie. Somewhere over the years, she fell for him and fell hard. The big problem with that? Kyler puts the ‘man’ in man-whore. He’s never stayed with a girl longer than a few nights, and with it being their last year in college, Syd doesn’t want to risk their friendship by declaring her love.
Kyler has always put Syd on a pedestal that was too high for him to reach. To him, she’s perfect and she’s everything. But the feelings he has for her, he’s always hidden away or focused on any other female. After all, Kyler will always be the poor boy from the wrong side of tracks, and Syd will always be the one girl he can never have.
But when they’re stranded together at a posh ski resort due to a massive Nor’easter, there’s nothing stopping their red-hot feelings for each other from coming to the surface. Can their friendship survive the attraction? Better yet, can they survive at all? Because as the snow falls, someone is stalking them, and this ski trip may be a life-changer in more ways than one.
Buy Links
Amazon    B&N
About the Author
# 1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.
Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen.
She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.
Website    Twitter     Facebook

Frigid Trailer 

Frigid Trailer Link

Giveaway Information & Link
Visit Jennifer L. Armentrout's/J Lynn's website to enter the release day giveaway for your chance to win a gift card, a copy of Frigid, or a snowflake necklace. http://www.jenniferarmentrout.com/frigid-is-out-winners-contest/

I hope that you've enjoyed the Frigid synopsis and trailer. If you'd like to learn more about J. Lynn/Jennifer L. Armentrout, you can visit her website, twitter page, and facebook page. Thank you for stopping by.  : D

I'd also like to extend a thank you to J. Lynn/Jennifer L. Armentrout for allowing me to participate in the trailer reveal.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

ARC Review & Giveaway: Taste the Heat by Rachel Harris

Taste the Heat (A Love & Games Novel #1)
Publisher/Publication Date:  Entangled Bliss, July 8, 2013 
Format, Source: e-arc, Publisher
Genre: Contemporary Romance


One sexy fire captain. One Cajun chef. One combustible kitchen…

When chef Colby Robicheaux returned home to New Orleans to save her family restaurant, the last person she expected to reconnect with was her brother’s best friend and her childhood crush. As tempting as a sugar-coated beignet, Jason is one dish she can’t afford to taste. Colby can’t wait to leave the place where her distrust of love and commitment originated and go back to Vegas.
Fire captain Jason Landry isn’t looking for love, either. Disillusioned by his past, he knows he should be focusing on finding the perfect mother for his daughter. But when he first sees Colby, all grown up and gorgeous, he can’t help but be drawn to her. And when she suggests a no-strings-attached fling, Jason can’t say no.
As their relationship grows more intense, Colby finds that Jason isn’t as easy to leave behind as she thought. Could turning up the heat on something real be worth the possibility
of getting burned?

My Thoughts

Taste the Heat by Rachel Harris is an amazing, passionate love story. I loved the premise of Colby having a childhood crush on Jason and a chance to live her dream of being with him years later. 
Harris’ depiction of the characters’ intense emotions along with the struggles associated with becoming a blended family were well-developed. Both the characters and their situations were believable. Jason is hesitant to get involved with Colby, because he doesn’t want a relationship to have a negative impact on his daughter, Emma. Emma just wants her father to be happy and her matchmaking attempts are priceless. I just loved the sly tactics that Emma used in her matchmaking schemes. Colby had a hard time trusting due to the untrustworthy men of her past. Her thoughts can be described as irrational and self-centered at times; yet, I liked how Colby evolved as she reflected on her feelings/behaviors and reconsidered her position on various issues.  The supporting characters were also well-written as they helped Jason and Colby resolve issues from their past so they could move on. 
At one point, there were just some events and misunderstandings that put Jason and Colby’s relationship on unstable ground, and at times it seemed that a happy ending was a little out of reach.  The ending was touching but similar to another book that I read recently. Then--in the end… Well, if you’d like to know how the book ended, I recommend reading Taste the Heat. 
I received an e-arc of Taste the Heat by Rachel Harris from the publisher for an honest review, thank you.
About the Author

Rachel Harris grew up in New Orleans, where she watched soap operas with her grandmother and stayed up late sneak reading her mama's favorite romance novels. Now a Cajun cowgirl living

in Houston, she still stays up way too late reading her favorite romances, only now, she can do so openly. She firmly believes life's problems can be solved with a hot, powdered-sugar-coated beignet or a thick slice of king cake, and that screaming at strangers for cheap, plastic beads is acceptable behavior in certain situations.

When not typing furiously or flipping pages in an enthralling romance, she homeschools her two beautiful girls and watches reality television with her amazing husband. Taste the Heat is her adult romance debut. She's the author of MY SUPER SWEET SIXTEENTH CENTURY and A TALE OF TWO CENTURIES. She loves hearing from readers! Find her at RachelHarrisWrites.com

 Rafflecopter Giveaway

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Indulgence Cover Reveal and Sexy New Look

Thank you to Entangled Publishing for allowing me to take part in presenting Indulgence's sexy new look and cover reveal.  Indulgence books are short contemporary romances.  They are new, fresh, edgy, light, and whimsical and always have a happily ever after.
Scroll down to check out a few of the upcoming titles and Indulgence's new look.


Famously Engaged, by Robyn Thomas
 Publisher/Expected Publication Date: Entangled Indulgence, July 8, 2013

A chef and a rock star. They couldn’t be from more different worlds…

Rock star royalty’s favorite son, Jake Olsen, couldn’t help but interfere after listening to his future brother-in-law talk non-stop about his ex-wife, Beth Carlisle. Jake decides that the only way to get the groom’s mind off his ex-wife is to give her a fake fiancĂ©.

Before Jake can convince Beth of his plan, he's forced to move in with her to avoid the paparazzi. Their instant attraction makes for a sizzling "first date", but soon Jake’s fame gets in the way and Beth wants out. Too bad Jake's figured out just why her ex is so obsessed with her, and he's afraid he's not going to be able to give her up either.

Now it's up to Jake to convince this chef together they make the perfect recipe. 

Amazon: http://amzn.to/16KcgH1

Barnes and Noble: Coming

The Wedding Gamble, by Cindi Myers
 Publisher/Expected Publication Date: Entangled Indulgence, July 8, 2013

Preschool teacher Laura Nichols is celebrating her birthday and sister's bachelorette party in Vegas. Being in Sin City is thrilling and she intends on tapping in to her wild side. Laura can't resist the added excitement that comes with saying yes when a hunky man off the street proposes...

FBI agent David Abruzzo has been working undercover as a thug to bring down the Zacolli crime family, but his cover depends on convincing the mob he came to Vegas for a quickie wedding. If they catch on to his plan, his cover's blown, and he's as good as dead. 

Over the course of 48 hours, David and Laura use rollercoasters, glowing condoms, and exotic male dancers to stay alive and bring the crime family down. But it will take more than Lady Luck, one night of passion, and a little Vegas magic to turn their fake marriage into something real.

Amazon: http://amzn.to/13mhnyK

Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/11bhLAf


Dishing Up Desire, by Barbara DeLeo
 Publisher/Expected Publication Date: Entangled Indulgence, July 8, 2013

Image consultant Blake Matthews is facing his toughest PR challenge yet: salvage the image of celebrity chef Kirin Hart. Once he does, he'll be able to acquire LA's most successful PR firm. But Kirin's no easy fix. She's stubborn about changing her comfortable homemaker image, and is being sued for sexual harassment by a junior staffer. She needs a PR lifeline fast. Only problem is Blake wants more than to make her over...

Kirin doesn't need a makeover--her fans love her as she is. But she could lose everything if the sex scandal and reputation that has followed doesn't get quashed right away. Kirin agrees to let model-perfect Blake work his magic for two weeks, but things get complicated when she can't deny the way her body flares to life whenever he's near.


Famously Engaged, The Wedding Gamble, and Dishing Up Desire are just a few Entangled Indulgence books. If you want 56 reasons to indulge in classic romance with a fresh new twist, check out the titles below on Entangled Publishing's website for more information!!!
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