Monday, June 30, 2014

Blog Tour, Excerpt, Review & Giveaway!! Hope at Dawn by Stacy Henrie

Title: Hope at Dawn
Author: Stacy Henrie
Publisher/Publication Date: Forever, June 24, 2014
Genre: Historical Romance, Christian Fiction
Format/Source:  E-ARC, NetGalley/Publisher

Buy links

About Hope at Dawn

With two brothers fighting in the Great War, her family needing extra money, and her boyfriend's drinking driving a wedge between them, Livy Campbell accepts a job teaching German-American children in a nearby small town. But even there, the effects of the war can be felt as anti-German hysteria divides the town's population. Friedrick Wagner feels shame for not fighting alongside his friends. Instead, he took a deferment to run his dying father's farm, work as the school handyman, and provide for his younger siblings. With so much hatred surrounding him, he fears God may have forgotten him. His friendship with Livy gives him hope, but the obstacles dividing them must first be overcome

Hope at Dawn Excerpt
After another fifteen minutes had crawled by, Livy forced herself to accept the likelihood that Robert—for whatever painful reason—had chosen to spend her birthday with a bottle cradled in his arms instead of her. Hot tears of anger sprang up behind her eyes and no amount of blinking could keep several of them from leaking onto her face.
            “Are you all right?”
            Livy whipped her chin up and found herself peering into eyes more brilliantly blue than she’d suspected from her seat across the room. Their clear depths exuded friendly concern in a way that made her feel immediately safe, though she didn’t know anything about this young man. Up close, his Sunday shirt and pressed trousers, though worn, accentuated his strong-looking physique. 
            She blinked, trying to remember what he’d asked her. Something about her being all right? “Yes. Thank you. I’m just fine.”
She swept away the salty drops from her cheeks. Of course her first real cry in ten years would be witnessed by a stranger, and yet, his self-assured, compassionate manner made her suspect he didn’t find her silly.
“You look like you could use a dance.” He crouched down in front of her and held out his hand. “How about it?”
Livy darted a quick look at the entrance again. “I’m . . . um . . .waiting for my boyfriend.”
“Ah.” He let his hand drop to his side. “Seems to be a bit late.”
She blushed. Who else had noticed her sitting here for over an hour? “I’m sorry,” she offered lamely.
“No, it’s all right.” He got to his feet and started to walk away.
Who was she kidding? Robert wasn’t coming. If he happened to, he’d likely be drunk and she didn’t want to be around him .
“Wait.” Livy jumped up. She could at least have one dance on her birthday. Why should she spend the whole evening hurt and angry over Robert’s absence?
The young man slowly turned back around.
She attempted a genuine smile. “I’d love a dance.”
His face lit up as he smiled in return and held out his hand a second time. Setting her hat on her chair, Livy placed her hand inside his larger one and allowed him to escort her onto the dance floor. The band began to play a fox trot—one of Livy’s favorite dances. She and Joel had become fairly adept at the steps before he’d left for the war.
It felt strange, at first, to be in another man’s arms, but the feeling soon left her. The way he held her hand in a confident but gentle grip, his hand warm on her back, helped Livy relax. He led her around the floor, their feet walking or spinning in time with the music. He was as skillful at the fox trot as her brother, and Livy relished the chance to do more than just sway to the music.
“Are you from around here?” he asked her after a minute or two of dancing.
“About an hour away. And you?”
He shook his head. “I live outside of Hilden. In the county north of here.”
Livy vaguely recalled hearing the town name. “You drove all the way down here, just to go dancing?”
“We don’t have a public dance hall in Hilden. So we have to come here, or head farther north or drive all the way to Sioux City. Do you come to this one often?”
“I used to, before I went to college in Cedar Falls.”
With slight pressure to her back, he expertly led her through a spin before he picked up their conversation again. “What did you study in college?”
“Are you a teacher now?”
Livy frowned, doing her best to tamp down the seeds of resentment the question unearthed. She loved her family and wanted to lift the burden her brothers’ absence had created, but she missed college and the chance to pursue her own dreams.
“I was only able to attend for a year before I was needed here.” Her words drew a look of sympathy from him.
“I know what that’s like,” he murmured. Before she could ask what he meant, he poised another question. “Would you still like to be a teacher?”
“Very much. I’m hoping someday I’ll have the chance.”
The understanding in his blue eyes changed to enthusiasm. “That might be sooner than you think. The teacher at one of the township schools outside of Hilden was recently . . . .” He shot a glance at the floor, his jaw tightening. Livy wondered at the change in his mood. Then he guided her through another spin and his expression relaxed. “Suffice it to say, she’s gone now and I don’t think they’ve found a replacement. It’s a little far away, but you might want to inquire about it.”
A possible teaching job? A flurry of anticipation set Livy’s pulse moving faster at the possibility. She tried to squelch it with the reminder she wasn’t likely to be hired with only one year of schooling completed and no teaching certificate, but she couldn’t destroy the hope completely. How wonderful it would be to be on her own again, and not learning how to teach this time, but actually being the teacher.
Livy met his open gaze and found her thoughts moving from his idea to the man himself. She didn’t even know his name, and yet, she felt comfortable enough in his presence to share some of her regret at having her dream of teaching cut short. She hadn’t even voiced those feelings to Robert yet.
“Thank you,” she said, hoping he sensed how much she meant it. “I may look into it.”
“I hope you will.” He smiled in a way that made her stomach twist with unexpected pleasure.
She searched her mind for a more neutral topic, one that wouldn’t mean spilling more of her secrets to this stranger. “Do you live with family, up there in Hilden?”
He nodded. “I’ve got my father, stepmother and two half-siblings. What about you?”
“I’ve got a few more than two siblings.” Livy laughed. “I’m the third of seven. Five boys and two girls.”
She studied the firm shoulder beneath her hand. He appeared quite fit and healthy, so why wasn’t he a soldier? “Can I ask you something?”
“How come you’re not wearing a uniform?”
Livy wished the question back at once when a shadow passed over his face, erasing the easy camaraderie between them. Before he could answer, the song ended. He released her hand at once, though he didn’t join her or the other couples in clapping.
She gnawed at her cheek, embarrassed at her apparent mistake. He’d been so kind to notice her distress earlier and suggest the teacher position in his town, and she’d repaid him by bringing up something he clearly did not wish to discuss.
“I’m sorry. It’s none of my business,” she said, rushing her words in an effort to keep him from disappearing into the crowd. “I didn’t mean to pry.”
He watched her, his expression guarded. What could she say to erase the awkwardness her inquiry had caused? They’d been having such a lovely time talking and dancing.
“I appreciate the dance. You see it’s my birthday and I adore the fox trot. So you’ve saved my evening, Mister . . .” She waited for him to fill the pause with his name.
The corners of his mouth worked up into a smile. “How about you call me ‘the birthday rescuer?’”
Livy chuckled. She wasn’t sure why he refused to give his name, but she wouldn’t press it—not after her blunder about the uniform. His kindness had completely changed her botched evening. “Thank you for the dance, birthday rescuer. And for telling me about the teacher position.”
“You’re welcome. Do I get to know the name of the birthday girl?”
Two can play at his game, Livy thought with a smirk. “How about ‘the girl I danced with once?’”
My Thoughts

Hope at Dawn by Stacy Henrie is a riveting historical romance novel. It’s a fictional story of the forbidden love during the early 1900's. The story captures ignorance associated with prejudice as a result of what Americans read-the propaganda—and heard about the German-American Citizens. There are several heart-wrenching moments along the way as the story of the plight of the German-American Citizens during the war unfolds. As a result of Livy’s initial beliefs, she was arrogant. It was nice to witness Livy's transition as she learned more about Friedrick and her German students; and as she started to stand up for what she believed in. In Hope at Dawn, Henrie has created a great depiction of a town torn apart by prejudice and war—A story of two people during a time of turmoil who have to decide between following their heart or an unjust law.  It’s a real page-turner that you won’t want to miss!!!

Rating 5/5
I received an E-ARC from NetGalley/the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

About Stacy Henrie

Stacy Henrie has always had an avid appetite for history, fiction and chocolate. She earned her B.A. in public relations from Brigham Young University and worked in communications before turning her attentions to raising a family and writing inspirational historical romances. Wife of an entrepreneur husband and a stay-at-home mom to three, Stacy loves the chance to live out history through her fictional characters, while enjoying the modern conveniences of life in the 21st century. In addition to author, she is a reader, a road trip enthusiast and a novice interior decorator.


Discussion Questions

Would you like some food for thought as you read Hope at Dawn? Well check out the discussion questions provided by the Author/Publisher below and feel free to post your thoughts in the comments section.

HOPE AT DAWN Reader Discussion Questions
  1. Friedrick resents the language law, which he sees as a threat to maintaining his family’s ties to their German heritage. What traditions, religious or cultural, would you find it difficult to give up?
  2. Faced with similar prejudice as the German-Americans during WWI, would you choose to stand silently, as Friedrick feels he must throughout most of the book, or would you take a stand, regardless of the consequences?
  3. Both Friedrick and Livy react with prejudice toward each other at their second meeting, only to learn later the error of those impressions. Have there been people in your life whom you perceived to be a certain way but later discovered your initial judgments were wrong, for good or ill?
Blog Tour

Spotlight and Excerpt posts:
6/24     Night Owl Reviews
6/24     Reading Is My Breathing
6/25     Book Reviews and More by Kathy
6/27     Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews
6/28     Manga Maniac Cafe
6/28     A Bluestocking's Place           
6/29     Inner Goddess

Original Content posts (Q&A, Top 5) 
6/25     The Avid Reader
6/26     SOS Aloha
6/30     Love Romance Passion
6/30     Gone with the Words

Review and Giveaway posts
6/25     Simply Angela
6/27     Polished Bookworm
6/30     Reading on the Rocks

Saturday, June 28, 2014

ARC Review: When Opposites Attract by Jules Bennett

When Opposites Attract... Title:  When Opposites Attract (The Barrington Trilogy, #1)
Author:  Jules Bennett
Publisher/Publication Date:  Harlequin, July 1, 2014
Genre:  Contemporary Romance
Format/Source:  E-ARC, Author

Book Summary from Goodreads

"When I want something, I find a way to make it mine."

After a near-fatal accident, Hollywood hotshot Grant Carter never imagined returning to the equestrian world. But producing a movie about a racing dynasty means he has no choice. Luckily Tessa Barrington, star jockey, provides the distraction he needs; feisty attitude, stunning looks; and a surprising innocence he can't resist.

Tessa won't give herself to just any man, especially a smooth-talking player like Grant. Once filming wraps, how can she trust he'll stick around? He's already keeping secrets. Besides, Tessa has her eye on bigger prizes; unless falling in love is the biggest prize of all, for both of them.

My Thoughts

When Opposites Attract by Jules Bennett is another fun contemporary romance novel filled with witty characters. I've read a few of her books and they always keep me smiling. The characters interactions are just so entertaining. I am intrigued by the city boy meets the country girl theme in which the country girl has preconceived notions that a man from Hollywood or the city is simply a heartbreaker. Then there’s the quest for the city boy to prove the country girl wrong. The overall concept results in a romance novel that just gives you a warm cuddly feeling and puts a smile on your face.

In When opposites Attract, we are introduced to Grant, a Hollywood producer who is making a movie about Tessa Barrington's family. He’s a city boy. And then you have the uptight Tessa Barrington of Virginia who follows a tight schedule. This contemporary novel was perfect from page one until the end. I loved how Grant is mesmerized by her curves and how he was intent on breaking through her defensive wall. And I like the fact that the heroines depicted in Bennett’s books have colorful personalities. Tessa’s uptight character was simply perfect. Her interactions with Grant were amusing as she fought giving into temptation. As for Grant, at times his behavior was less than stellar as he dealt with an inner conflict related to issues from his past, but he remained a likeable character.

I would definitely recommend When Opposites Attract to fans of contemporary romance novels. It is a quick read that’s sure to leave a smile on your face.

Rating 5/5

I was provided with an E-ARC of When Opposites Attract from the Author in exchange for an honest review.

ARC Review: Dream Huntress by Michelle Sharp

Title:  Dream Huntress 
Author: Michelle Sharp
Publisher/Publication Date:  Entangled Ignite, June 23, 2014
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Format/Source: E-ARC, Publisher

Book Summary

Detective Jordan Delany has a gift. Through her dreams, she connects with dead victims of violent crimes. Her isolated life as a drug cop is perfect for hiding the freakish visions, until her newest investigation has her posing as a cocktail waitress in a down-and-dirty strip club. When she’s saved from a drunken customer by a handsome stranger, the heated chemistry is exactly why she intends to keep Mr. Arrogant at bay. But learning he’s the new bouncer for the corrupt club she intends to bust just might be the one reason why she can’t.

Tyler McGee suspects a drug ring operating out of the local club is flooding the streets of his hometown with heroin. Determined to get answers, he plays the part of a fallen cop and lands the job of head bouncer. What he discovers is that the club owner isn’t the only deadly obstacle he’s facing. His attraction to an intriguing cocktail waitress with a penchant for danger just might kill him first.

My Thoughts

Dream Huntress by Michelle Sharp was another story that had things that I liked and didn't like about it. The Debut Novel was engaging, but there was a plot hole.

Tyler (Ty) and Jordan were from two different police departments and they were investigating the same establishment, a strip club. It was unbeknownst to them that they were working to take down the same people. There was an amazing chemistry between the two. Needless to say there was also a lot of tension. It seemed that Ty knew what he wanted from the start. On the other hand, there was Jordan who had attachment issues and she portrayed herself as being as tough as they come. She was absolutely unreasonable at times and I liked how Ty stood firm by his principles when Jordan wanted to use him to get what she wanted—well some of his principles, because when those two were together things got pretty hot.

As mentioned before, there was a plot hole. Jordan’s visions did consist of violent crimes, including sexual assault. One of the visions included a plot hole in which there was plenty of evidence left at the scene of the crime, but the crime had remained unsolved. Things just didn't add up. If the sequence of events and crime happened as it was depicted, I couldn't understand why the crime wasn't solved long before her vision

Despite the fact that there was a plot hole, I still liked Dream Huntress.  It had a nice balance of romance and suspense with well placed twists along the way that had me second guessing my analysis of the story’s probable outcome.

Rating 3/5

I received a copy of Dream Huntress by Michelle Sharp from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

ARC Review: Deadly Chemistry by Teri Anne Stanley

Title:  Deadly Chemistry
Author:  Teri Anne Stanley
Publisher/Publication Date:  Entangled Ignite, June 23, 2014
Format/Source:  E-ARC, Publisher


Book Summary

Former undercover cop Mike Gibson has been lying low, working as a maintenance man to put his troubled younger brother through college. But when a beautiful scientist enlists Mike’s help to repair the damage done to her lab by a group of vandals, Mike finds that his, and his brother's pasts, are about to be brought to light.

Laura Kane was happy having a secret crush on the hot maintenance man at Tucker University, but when the drug she was studying is stolen, Laura has a chance to get to know Mike in person. The problem is, he seems to know more about what's going on than any maintenance man should. But then the drug turns up in the wrong hands, and Mike and Laura have to decide if their own chemistry will help, or hinder, the race to save innocent lives. 

My Thoughts

Deadly Chemistry was an entertaining story, but it had its downfalls.

I loved the beginning of the story. And throughout the book there was a nice balance of   humor, romance, and suspense. The way Lauren literally tumbled into Mike’s life was absolutely amusing. There was an instant connection. But things didn’t move too fast. And Stanley did a good job of incorporating work life balance issues, which contributed to Lauren’s fears of being in a relationship.

One problem I had with the book was that the description of the African American Chief of Police Dwayne Crawford was stereotypical and lacking. It was assumed that he was around 30 years old with a height and lean power of someone who played basketball. There were a couple of other details, but it wasn’t enough information to allow me to really connect with the character. The description of the police chief just fell flat and didn’t compare to the descriptions of some of the other characters such as Lauren who was described as being tall, blond, and curvy.

As for the elements of suspense, it was a slightly predictable. However, there were several characters that could have had a motive to distribute the Devil’s Dust, a deadly substance that was thought to be derived from Lauren’s experimental drug.
Although there were some aspects of Deadly Chemistry I disliked and it was somewhat predictable, the storyline was captivating enough to keep me reading until the end.

Rating 3/5     

I received a copy of Deadly Chemistry by Teri Anne Stanley from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Cover Reveal & Giveaway: Razed by Shiloh Walker

RAZED, a sexy romance by award-winning author, Shiloh Walker, is the much awaited sequel to WRECKED in the Barnes Brothers series and it releases this December from Berkley!

Take a look at the cover and let us know what you think!
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway for a chance to win a signed paperback copy of WRECKED, along with some fabulous swag! (Yes, it’s international :))


Tattoo artist Keelie Jessup can handle that someone else has claimed the man of her dreams. She’s just not pleased with her remaining options…
Keelie doesn’t believe in the “perfect man.” But the men who are worth the trouble are usually taken—like her business partner Zach Barnes. After a string of bad luck and the lost chance with Zach, Keelie decides that maybe flying solo—and living with suppressed desires—is the key to happiness.
As a photographer, Zane Barnes has an eye for the human form, and his eyes can’t get enough of Keelie’s curves. Unfortunately, Keelie is like most women—always fawning over his little brother, Zach. Zane is about ready to give up, but then a few stolen moments at his brother's wedding have him thinking maybe there's a chance there after all. Now he just has to prove that the perfect man does exist...for her.

Also in the Barnes Brothers series: WRECKED by Shiloh Walker!


Humiliation burned in her.

Rejection turned her blood to ice while her skin shrank down about two sizes too small.

She wanted to sink into the floorboards, turn into something thin and vaporous so she could just disappear.

Pushing against his chest, she focused on the navy blue polo.  “Then how about you let me go, huh?  My mistake.”

The hand on her throat didn’t move.

It should have felt threatening.

But the feel of him touching her just made her melt that much more…and it was now a heavy ache inside because he—

His lips brushed her ear.

“You want to know what I want from you?” he asked, the words velvet, stroking over her like a caress.

Keelie closed her hands into fists to keep from reaching for him. He was messing with her.  It pissed her off—and, to her disgust, it hurt.  It almost felt like a betrayal, too, because she hadn’t expected to see this in Zane.

“Back off,” she warned, putting an edge into her voice and preparing herself to make him back off.  So what if he had some moves on him?  He hadn’t seen her moves yet.  Not really.

“I want…” He slid his hand down from her throat, to rest on her chest, fingers spread wide where it rested above her heart.  “This.”

The simplicity of the gesture stunned her into passivity.

She held still as he lifted his head and stared down at her.

She blinked, not moving, as he continued to stand there, his hand on her chest.  “I want five minutes of your time…over a cup of coffee.  An hour for lunch.  I want you to pick up the phone when I call, talk with me for a while,” he said, staring into her eyes while the blue-green of his gaze cut into her.

Then he leaned in and pressed a hot, open-mouthed kiss to her chest, just above the neckline of her sweater.  “I want to peel your clothes away, learn each and every one of these insanely sexy tattoos…each tattoo, and the reason behind them.  I want to know what makes you laugh, and I want to know what makes you mad.  I want to know what sort of book you’re reading whenever I’m in the office—I’ve asked, but you always toss it down when I walk by and you never answer me.”

His breath was a caress on her flesh and she broke out into goosebumps.

Her heart raced in her chest and she couldn’t even begin to understand why there was a knot in her chest.

About Shiloh Walker

Shiloh Walker has been writing since she was a kid... she fell in love with vampires with the book Bunnicula and has worked her way up to the more...ah... serious vampire stories. She loves reading and writing anything paranormal, anything fantasy, but most all anything romantic. Once upon a time, she worked as a nurse, but now she writes full time and lives with her family in the Midwest. She also writes under the pen name J. C. Daniels.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Boomerang by Noelle August Free First Part Serial Blog Blitz & Giveaway

—a Boomerang novel—
By Noelle August

“August…delivers a solid new adult trilogy launch. Mia and Ethan alternate viewpoints in this engaging story of young up-and-comers balancing responsibilities and desires.” – Publishers Weekly

Boomerang is the dating site for millennials, but their offices might be even steamier than the hook-ups people find on their website…

William Morrow is thrilled to publish Noelle August’s BOOMERANG (William Morrow Trade Paperback, On-sale: July 8, 2014, ISBN: 9780062331069; $13.99), the latest hot summer read! Readers can’t get enough of New Adult lit, and Noelle August is at the forefront of this phenomenon. With genre-bending characters, drama, and a fresh, fun premise, BOOMERANG showcases a hilariously charming, deliciously sexy style.

Welcome to BOOMERANG, the hottest recent startup in the trendiest city: Los Angeles, CA. The website’s about no-strings, no-fuss relationships for those on the rebound and those who crave connection—without all the baggage of long-term promises.

But that buzz is fading as Boomerang struggles to grow. The solution? Find two brilliant interns and give them a crack at launching the site into the stratosphere.

Enter Mia Galliano and Ethan Vance. Mia is an aspiring filmmaker with killer curves and gorgeous, curly locks. Ethan is a hot, blue-eyed go-getter who has just played his last game as a collegiate soccer star. They’re both sharp, hungry for success, and they share a major secret.

Ethan and Mia aren’t strangers. The night before they start their new jobs, Ethan and Mia meet at a bar and fall into bed together…or did they? Though they’re both hazy on the details, they definitely do know how awkward it is when they find themselves in a post hook-up taxi…to the same place: Boomerang headquarters.

Turns out they both got the gig, and now they’ll be competing for one job at Boomerang. Even better? The company’s strict policy about inner-office dating. Simply put: they can’t.

But their connection is as powerful as their ambition. Will they manage to keep their eyes on the future and their hands off each other? Find out this summer!

BOOMERANG will be available wherever books and e-books are sold July 8th, 2014 (ISBN: 9780062331069 | $13.99 | e-ISBN: 9780062331076 | $2.99).


Question: What do you get when friends pen a story with heart, plenty of laughs, and toe-curling kissing scenes? Answer: Noelle August, the pseudonym for renowned editor and award-winning writer Lorin Oberweger and New York Times bestselling YA author Veronica Rossi, the masterminds behind Boomerang. You can visit them at, @Noelle_August,


Enter for a chance to win 1 of 3 copies of

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