Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Return to Poughkeepsie by Debra Anastasia: Review & Giveaways




RETURN TO POUGHKEEPSIE (POUGHKEEPSIE #2)

Debra Anastasia



Release Date: December 30, 2013 







Synopsis:


Beckett Taylor is a murderer. His calling, his craft are destruction and intimidation—whether he wants it that way now or not. He left Poughkeepsie to keep his brothers safe, to keep Eve safe. Set up with happy lives to live, they’re better off without him, right?

But all his willpower crumbles when he hears his brother Blake’s frantic voice on the phone. An unknown enemy has moved in on his old territory, and Livia’s been taken. In an instant, Beckett knows it will take an attack only he and Eve can execute to bring her back. All his self-imposed embargoes are torn to shreds, perhaps along with the new man he’s struggled to become.

“Brother, call Eve. I’ll be there soon.”


In this emotional and action-packed sequel to Poughkeepsie, Debra Anastasia conjures a tale of love at its most raw and ragged. With Beckett and Eve, how could we expect anything less? But even when it’s messy, not magical, true love perseveres. Real love finds a way—for better or for worse until death does part.





Review:


Star Rating: 4.5 stars

Heat Rating: Sizzling-Hot


I jumped on the Poughkeepsie train late,  (meaning I read it last week) and what I got was an amazing couple of days reading Poughkeepsie and then Return to Poughkeepsie back to back like one seamless book.  It was a fucking great ride! 

If you haven't read Poughkeepsie, you really need to before jumping into Return to Poughkeepsie.  What Debra Anastasia excels at is creating characters and community in this series.  I loved that this series wasn't just following two people on their journey into love, this series was about a group/ a family and we get to know each one of them and connect deeply.  Usually when I read stories that are more about a cast than a couple I am never satisfied but Debra Anastasia nails this concept!  I am so addicted to these characters that I can't let go even days after reading.

Poughkeepsie and Return to Poughkeepsie aren't "easy" or "light" reads but they are beautifully written books that really show the heart of the characters.  I cried, I laughed and I held my breath several times while reading.  An author that can evoke those kinds of emotions with just words has a precious talent that the world is lucky to have.

This was my first time reading anything by Debra Anastasia and it will not be the last!  I can't wait to see what else unfolds in Poughkeepsie and I will be the first in line for the next book! I highly recommend this series, not only because Debra lives where I grew up or because she is a knitter (and there is knitting in the series), I recommend this series because it was just too damn good not to read.  Go, 1-click and Return to Poughkeepsie and see what the gang is up to now OR go pick up both books and experience what a beautiful thing a simple smile can mean.


Buy this Book:




Haven't read Poughkeepsie yet?






















Just $0.99 at the time of this blog posting:






Meet the Author:


Debra Anastasia is busy, just like every other mom. There's dinner, the dogs, the two kids, the two kids, and her ongoing battle with...ahem... digestive issues, which combined with her adolescent boy sense of humor makes for colorful and sometimes cringe-worthy social media updates. Her first love and crowning achievement is her thriving career as the weirdest mom on the block.
Her writing started a decent handful of years ago when--along with the animals and humans in her house--the voices of characters started whispering stories in Debra's ear. Insomnia was the gateway to plots that wouldn't give up, wouldn't let go. Now they stalk her everywhere. Halfway through making lunches, a twist takes hold and--fingers full of peanut butter--she finds somewhere, anywhere to write it down.
She's eternally grateful to Omnific Publishing, which has now published four of her books: two in the Seraphim Series and two in the Poughkeepsie Brotherhood Series, as well as her novella, Late Night with Andres. That one is special because 100% of the proceeds go to breast cancer research. (So go get it right now, please!) She also very much appreciates her open-minded readers, who embrace everything she has to offer, with a focus on anti-heroes and bathroom humor.
Debra lives in Maryland with her family. You can find her at DebraAnastasia.com and on Twitter @Debra_Anastasia. But be prepared.




Social Media Links:


Giveaways:


#1:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


#2:

Win an e-book set of both Poughkeepsie and Return to Poughkeepsie!  

Just leave a comment and tell me about another hobby of yours besides reading (ex.  I am a knitter and a hoarder of yarn).  I will randomly select a winner by January 3, 2014.







Monday, December 30, 2013

IN THE FIRELIGHT by Sibylla Matilde: Review, Excerpt & Giveaway








INTO THE FIRELIGHT

by: Sibylla Matilde






Synopsis:




***** Mature Content, Sexual Situations, Adult Situations, Strong Language *****



She found him on a snowy night. He sparked her desires and inflamed her dreams. 

Independent and feisty, Shea Madison has a tussle on her hands. Living in and loving her quiet little corner of Montana, she’s fiercely determined to fight a real estate developer trying to turn her quaint little mountain town into a touristy ski resort. So, when an outsider shows up to study the effects on the area, she instantly attempts to sway his impression… even if it means a little harmless flirting with the enticing visitor. 

Rhys Weland’s charade has one purpose—to bring the locals around to the idea of the resort, primarily the ringleader, Ms. Shea Madison. Embroiled in his deception, he’s stunned by the feelings she draws from deep inside him. Her integrity and sincerity quickly have him second-guessing his twisted morals. Her spirit arouses his soul. Her sensuality steals his breath. 

In the dark of the night, in the warmth of the fire, the passion smoldering between them combusts. But just when it all seems to make sense, one small stubborn mistake shreds the fragile bond between them. Will an impetuous act reignite their flame, or will their love vanish like sparks in the air?



Excerpt:


Chapter 9 – The Visitor

The crunch of tires in the deep snow outside could faintly be heard through the heavy cabin walls, and she followed Wolfie to see who was there.
Rhys.
Shit.
Yay.
No, shit.
Really… shit.
Her play of emotions duked it out as she tried to decide just how she should feel about him being there. Wondering why he was there. Angry at the confusion that he wrought. A little excited by the thought of his splendid manliness standing in her little cabin again.
In the clear, bright moonlight that shone over the white terrain, she saw him climb out of his rental Jeep. A moment later, he climbed the steps to her porch, and a quick heavy knock sounded at her door. Shea’s first instinct was to pretend she wasn’t home. But, really… her truck was there. Her lights were on. He’d know that was bullshit in a second.
Crossing over to the door, she quickly looked down at her worn, faded jeans and light, clingy beige sweater. At least she had showered today, although she wasn’t terribly presentable with her hair up in a messy bun. Not that she cared what he thought, though.
Really… she didn’t.
Shea ripped the clip out that held her hair up off her neck, and the still slightly damp tendrils fell around her shoulders. She dropped it on the radio by the entrance and reached for the doorknob, mentally preparing herself to be cool. But as she opened the door, she almost moaned at the sight of him before her.
Fuck. Why did he have to be so God-damned good-looking? In the last two days, his stubble had grown thicker along his jaw, and he looked really rugged and… hot. Her body craved him, and the desire made her feel angry and defensive, Shea narrowed her eyes at him.
“Rhys, what the fuck are you doing here?” she asked.
He smiled at her less-than-enthusiastic greeting. “I see absence does not make the heart grow fonder after all, huh, sweetheart?” he asked as Wolfie nuzzled his hand, apparently not terribly upset by their company.
“I’m sorry, I just… I’m not used to having people just show up anyway, and for you to… It’s just a bit of a surprise, that’s all.”
“Can I come in?” he asked. “I just wanted to check on you, to see how you were doing because I hadn’t seen you in town for a few days.”
Shea stood back, opening the door wider to allow him in. He crossed through the doorway and unbuttoned his coat. Shea held the door open for another moment as Wolfie peered into the night before stepping out to explore. Shea shut the door behind him.
“I’ve been working,” she said quietly. “Trying to get caught up after all the excitement earlier this week, you know.”
“Excitement?” Rhys laughed as he pulled the coat from his wide, broad, beautiful… Stop it, Shea!  “What kind of excitement? Oh, wait, you mean having a stranger in town,” he chuckled.
“Rhys, Snowcreek is kind of the end of the road. We don’t really get people here that are passing through.” Shea took his coat and hung it on a hook by the door as Rhys bent down to remove his snow-caked boots. “So, yeah, someone new just shows up out of the blue, and it generates a little discussion. And the meeting the other day and everything, it just all got me completely off schedule with my transcription.”
Rhys kicked off his last boot and stood, walking over to her. Looming above her, actually, causing a thrill to run down her center. “Do you want me to leave? Or did you get caught up?” he asked, the dim light of the room casting slight shadows that played up the angle of his cheek.
Shea should tell him to leave. She should tell him she was behind and had to work.
But she didn’t. Instead, she ducked around him, stepping in a clump of melting snow that completely soaked through her socks and chilled her skin. Goosebumps rose all over her body. Every sensation seemed to be amplified when he was around.
“No,” she said, kicking herself the whole time, “I actually just kinda typed nonstop for the last day or two, and I’ve made up ground. I’ve even gotten a little ahead.” She crossed over to the fireplace and sat on the edge of the couch closest to its heat. She reached down and pulled off the cold, wet socks. Using every acting skill she possessed, she did her best to appear unbothered by his appearance. “So, what’s up? Why the impromptu visit?” She laid the wet socks on the edge of the hearth to dry and turned to watch Rhys casually amble to the other end of the couch and sprawl out to soak in the heat of the fire.
“Just what I said. I hadn’t seen you in a few days. I was just wondering how you were doing. I’ve been, um… thinking about you.”
Her eyes flew up to meet his, caught in the blue depths. He was making it somewhat difficult, with his ever-so-soft-looking thermal shirt, ruffled and messy hair, shadowy unshaved jaw. And there was an intensity in his eyes as he looked over at her that instantly made her drop her gaze to where her hands sat in her lap. She instantly noticed that the v-neck to her sweater had dipped low, showing off a bit more of the curves of her breasts than she had realized.
Her eyes darted back to his and saw the heat reflecting from the fire dancing off them, giving him a devilish appearance. Yes, she most definitely should have told him she was busy… she should have made him leave. Without a doubt.


Buy this Book:




Review:


Star Rating: 3.5 stars


Heat Rating: HOT HOT HOT!


In the Firelight was a quick, hot and enjoyable book to read all snuggled up on the couch (preferable in front of a fire).  I loved the tough foul mouthed Shea from the moment she stepped on the page and in my opinion she really made the book.  

Even though the plot was predictable and you knew pretty much how this was going to go, it was entertaining enough to see how Sibylla Matilde would resolve it all in the end.  The start of the book dragged a bit and then once things heated up (and they heat up a lot) the story took off and had my attention from there out.  My one wish would have been to end the book right before the epilogue, I felt the epilogue was rushed and things were confusing. I was left feeling like I had overstayed my welcome and was being pushed out before I was done with these two characters. Don't get me wrong, I liked how it all worked out, I just would have liked to had more time with Rhys and Shea in the epilogue to really get a good look at what happened after "the end".

In the Firelight was my first book by Sibylla Matilde and I really enjoyed her female leads with foul mouths and realism, so I will definitely be reading her again!  If you are looking for an easy read (with lots of heat and dirty talk) that you can cozy up to in an evening In the Firelight would be a great fit!  


Meet the Author:



Sibylla Matilde grew up in the mountain valleys of Southwest Montana exploring the dusty Old West gold country on the back of a horse. She attended a two-room schoolhouse beginning in 1st grade & had the same teacher until she changed schools after 7th. Beginning at about age 12, Sibylla discovered historical romance, feeding off of work of Jude Deveraux & Lisa Kleypas. She loves a book that can make the reader run the gamut of emotions, from the sweet glow of new love to gut-wrenching heartache. She is a true romantic & always has stories floating around in her head, living in a fantasyland until she writes them down to free them.

Music is her emotional trigger. Growing up with a Wagnarian-loving mother, Sibylla was raised to treasure music that digs deep into the psyche, drawing out elation, sorrow, grief, desire. The soundtrack to her life includes many genres spanning centuries. She looooooooves Thirty Seconds to Mars (rather obsessively, actually... but, really, how can you NOT be crazy about this guy!? 
Jared Leto. Shhh. ) & pimps them out to all her friends through Spotify. She also delights in Met Opera HD broadcasts at her local movie theater & hopes (listening Met?) to someday see Diana Damrau reprise her role as Mozart’s Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflöte.

Sibylla lives with her husband and hero who saved her from her own calamitous, young-adult self. He makes her laugh daily, even when things are tough. He's proved to her that love really can heal a shattered soul. In 18 years, they have never had a fight, although argue regularly with their two teenage kids who have, unfortunately, inherited their father’s quick wit (unfortunate as it is a quick wit that Sibylla, herself, definitely does not possess – there is a reason she is a writer & not a stand-up comedian). They live a quiet life with their two weird little rescued Chiweenies. Wait… teenagers & little yap-dogs? OK, maybe not so quiet.


Social Media Links:







Giveaway:



Each blog on this tour has a teaser pic. In each one of those teaser pics there is a letter that is different. There are four pictures in total that spell a four letter word. Figure out that word and type in the answer in the Giveaway/Rafflecopter.  


To get a tour schedule for the day go to 
https://www.facebook.com/subclubbers each day for the blog tour stops. The Prize? A signed Paperback from Sibylla Matilde herself. 








a Rafflecopter giveaway










Release Day: Music of the Soul (a Runaway Train Novella) by Katie Ashley


Title: Music of the Soul (Runaway Train #2.5)
Author: Katie Ashley
Published: Dec. 30, 2013







In Music of the Heart, an unexpected twist of fate caused Abby Renard to fall into womanizer Jake Slater’s bed. What started out as a small spark between the unlikely pair, grew into a deep and intense love. After a year-long engagement, the two have finally been able to set a wedding date. It’s off to Mexico for a destination ceremony on a private beach. After a heated week long honeymoon in a tropical paradise, the two return to the real world of touring and making music together. 

As the newlyweds settle into married life, another twist of fate challenges their love. For once, Abby isn’t able to be the rock of strength that Jake needs. Can the two of them hold on to the strong foundation of love they have built, or will it crumble under the pressure?









Long after the last footsteps could be heard pattering down the hall or the sound of water in the pipes, I finally threw back the covers and hopped out of bed.

I knew exactly what I wanted to wear, and it only took two seconds to pull it out of my suitcase. I then slipped into the bathroom and got dressed. As soon as I was done, I crept out of the bedroom and down the hall. I could hear my dad snoring in the guest bedroom, while the sound of muted TV came from the office where Eli and Gabe were sleeping on an air mattress and the pullout couch. Grabbing a flashlight out of the hall closet, I then snuck out the front door. I jogged as fast as I could in my robe and slippers across the front lawn and down the hill. Thankfully, Angel had actually listened to me when I told her to stay on the porch. The last thing I needed was for her to start a barking marathon and alert everyone that I was running around half-naked outside.

When I got to the barn, I reached under one of the potted plants to get out the hide-a-key. Gently, I unlocked the door and stepped inside. When I closed the door behind me, I heard rustling in the bed upstairs. Without hesitation, I made my way across the living room toward the stairs. Of course, I didn’t expect Jake to have left his shoes in the middle of the floor, causing me to trip and bang into the ladder.

“Ow!” I cried before I could bite down on my lip.

“Abby?” Jake questioned. Within a few seconds, he was peering over the railing of the loft.

Gazing up at him, I teased, “Yes, it’s me. Were you expecting someone else?”

His brows furrowed. “I wasn’t expecting anyone, especially you.”

“Well…surprise!”

Jake gave me a funny look as I started climbing the stairs. When I got to the top rung of the ladder, he helped me off. “What are you doing here?”

To answer his question, I undid the tie on my robe. I then shimmied it off my shoulders and let it fall to the floor. Jake’s eyes widened while his mouth gaped open at my skimpy lingerie. “Abby…”

“Do you remember this?” I asked, running my hand over the silky material.

As the revelation washed over him, desire burned in his eyes. “You were wearing that the night we made love for the first time.”

“Yes, I was.” Stepping forward, I wrapped my arms around his neck. “I want you to finish what you started earlier this afternoon. But most of all, I want you to make love to me again on our wedding eve in the same place we first came together.”

Jake’s gaze left mine to momentarily flicker over to the clock on the nightstand. “But it’s after midnight. That means it’s our wedding day. What about the bad luck?”

“We make our own luck. But more than anything, we make our own memories, and I want to make one with you tonight.”

As his arms wrapped tighter around me, he cocked his head at me. “Trust me, Angel, I certainly don’t want to argue with you. I just don’t want you to regret it later.”

“There hasn’t been a single moment I’ve regretted with you.”

Jake’s brows rose in surprise. “Really?”

“I promise.”

He smiled. “I’m really glad to hear that.”

“So are you down with my plan?”

“Oh, hell yeah,” he said, as he backed us over to the bed.





Katie Ashley is the New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon Best-Selling author of The Proposition. She lives outside of Atlanta, Georgia with her two very spoiled dogs and one outnumbered cat. She has a slight obsession with Pinterest, The Golden Girls, Harry Potter, Shakespeare, Supernatural, Designing Women, and Scooby-Doo.

She spent 11 1/2 years educating the Youth of America aka teaching MS and HS English until she left to write full time in December 2012.

She also writes Young Adult fiction under the name Krista Ashe.








Saturday, December 28, 2013

Cover Reveal with Giveaway: USED by Lynetta Halat





USED (Unlovable #1)

by: Lynetta Halat



A New Adult Contemporary Romance


Release Date: January 26, 2014



Synopsis:


I am a slut. No worries. I've come to terms with it, and you will too. I’m not one of those girls who thinks she’s too plain, too fat, too skinny, too shy … no, I don’t have that kind of luck. I’m the girl who knows she’s just right for everyone. — Denver

A reputation as a manwhore–with–a–heart–of–gold tends to precede me. But, I don’t do girls with issues, that is until this girl. It's this girl I want to fix. This girl I want to protect. And maybe … more. — Ransom

Being in love with the same girl your entire life isn't all it's cracked up to be. She uses me in every way imaginable. How does she see me? I am her perpetual one-night stand. No strings, no attachments. Just mind-numbing sex ... for her anyway. — Greer

Feeling like the life is being choked out of her in the small town of Anaconda, Montana, Denver Dempsey craves the escape that college offers …even if that means leaving her “best friend with benefits” and looking for a new way to forget. Thinking she's found the perfect hookup in Ransom, Denver's outlook on college is bright. That is, until Greer shows up looking for a second chance, and Ransom's interest turns to hatred.

Love. Hate. Triangle. 

Who's using who?



Excerpt:



Meet Denver


“She’s, at best, a fuck buddy. However, I prefer the term ‘whore.’ Fuck buddy is far too nice a term for her,” a catty voice cracks from behind me.
I take a deep breath and look up at the ceiling, saying a little prayer that maybe the venomous voice isn’t referring to me. I thought I’d left all that behind in Anaconda. We’d been here for all of three days, so it’s highly probable they’re not talking about me, right?  Looking back down, I continue pouring Jack in my Solo cup, surpassing the line that is recommended for liquor.
“Yeah, so apparently, she’s got some serious issues and doesn’t ‘do’ relationships. So, she puts out for her guy friends whose girls are too good to give it up. That’s her idea of a relationship.”
“Really? That’s kinda gross,” I hear the other girl mutter.
Sonofabitch! I groan. Yep, they’re talking about me. I splash a little Coke in my cup and stick my finger in it to stir it around a little. I feel tears spring to my eyes and berate myself for still having feelings and giving a shit what people think about me. Years of dealing with this crap should have made me immune, but I’d really hoped college would be different. And how the hell do they even know about that shit? Strengthening my spine, I turn and give them a beguiling smile, which causes them both to blanch. Yeah, bitches, you’ve no idea who you’re dealing with.
“Ladies,” I say with a quirked eyebrow. Removing my finger from the drink, I place it in my mouth and suck off the excess. With a pop, I release it. “I see my reputation precedes me. Well, let me just reassure you that I’m very good at what I do. When you won’t give it up for your guy, he’ll be looking me up, and I’ll be more than happy to take care of him. No questions. No strings. Just lots of meaningless … hot … sex.” I peer around them with a searching look. “Are they here? Your boyfriends?” I look back at them innocently. I almost snort at their mutual expressions of surprise and disdain. “Or,” I continue, “are the sticks up your asses enough so that you don’t need a man?” Both of their mouths drop on that line. Yep, gets ‘em every time. “Oh, no judgment here,” I vow. “I totally get not wanting to be tied down to any one Dick … or Tom … or Harry.”






Meet the Author:


Since the dawn of time, Lynetta Halat has lived to read and has written innumerable stories and plays. A lover of good books, bad boys, and kickass tunes, she'd always dreamt of penning books that people could connect with and remember. She also has a secret penchant for wringing the emotions out of unsuspecting readers, and she collects reader's tears in much the same way that wine connoisseurs collect their favorite vintage.
Her first novel, Every Rose, was the perfect catalyst to launch her into the world of publishing, effectively burrowing her way into the hearts and minds of readers throughout the world. Everything I've Never Had was her follow-up adult romance novel. Now, she has penned Used, a New Adult Romance that she hopes sinks its teeth into you and doesn't let go.
Her love of the English language prompted her to pursue a Master's degree in English from Old Dominion University in Virginia, where she also minored in snark and interpretive dance. She lives somewhere along the Mississippi Gulf Coast with her adorable husband, two amazing sons, and two loveable dogs. When she's not writing riveting stories, she likes to focus on her macramé art and her scouring of eBay, where she buys locks of hair from her favorite rock stars, most especially Bret Michaels and Dave Grohl.


Social Media Links: 


Website: www.lynettahalat.com 
Twitter: @LynettaHalat
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/ author/show/6969980.Lynetta_Halat
     
      Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Lynetta-Halat/e/B00BSGC5BC/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1  



Giveaway:


a Rafflecopter giveaway









Friday, December 27, 2013

Bloggers Give Back Holiday GIVEAWAY!!

Bloggers Give Back Holiday Giveaway 

For the 3rd Bloggers Give Back Giveaway, this time it is a Holiday Giveaway. To all of the followers and authors Thank you and Happy Holidays! 



* Amber's Reading Room → 1 winner, Amazon $5.00 gift card.
* Crystal's Many Reviewers → 5 winners get SWAG. (INTERNATIONAL) 
* Reality Bites! Let's Get Lost! → 1 winner, Amazon $5.00 gift card.
The Blushing Reader → 1 winner, Ebook of their choice. 
* Verna Loves Books → 1 winner, signed paperback of Ruin by Rachel Van Dyken (US ONLY)
Liezel's Book Blog → 1 winner, Ebook of All the Pretty Lies by M. Leighton 
Mary Elizabeth's Crazy Book Obsession → 1 winner, Ebook of Christmas Catch by Chelsea M. Cameron. 
Bookaholics Blog → 1 winner, Amazon $10.00 gift card. 
Author Groupies → 1 winner, signed paperback of Shattered Promises by Jessica Sorenson. (US ONLY)
* Love Between the Sheets → 1 winner, pick 2 Ebooks of the 12's NA's of Christmas. 
* Bare Naked Words → 1 winner, Ebook of Unsettled by SC Ellington. 
* Chicks controlled by books → 1 winner, Amazon $5.00 gift card. 
* Book Friends Forever → 1 winner, Ebook of their choice up to $1.99. 
* No BS Book Reviews → 1 winner, Ebook of True Bliss by BJ Harvey. 
* Food, Books, and More → 1 winner, Ebook of winner choice up to $3.99. 
* For Your Literary Pleasure → 1 winner, Amazon Ebook of Soul Stripper by Katana Collins. 
* As the Pages Turn → 1 winner, Amazon or B&N $25.00 gift card. 



a Rafflecopter giveaway