Dirty Rich

Review:  Pretend It’s Love (Behind the Bar) by Stefanie London

Title:  Pretend It’s Love

Author: Stefanie London

Publisher: Entangled: Lovestruck

Publication Date: September 28, 2015

Format: eBook

Genre:  Adult Contemporary Romance

Pages:  203 pages

Rating:  5/5 stars

Synopsis:

One fake relationship shaken not stirred…

Bar manager Paul Chapman is sick of his family’s traditional ideals. Marriage, babies, and a white picket fence? Not his gig. But now that his ‘golden child’ big brother is tying the knot, Paul’s screwed. His ex will be there…and she’s having his cousin’s baby. Unless he wants to show up to the wedding alone and face his family’s scrutiny, he needs a girl on his arm. Now.

Cocktail specialist Libby Harris has spent her life earning the nickname Little Miss Perfect, all to win the love of her wealthy, controlling father. But she deviated from his plan, and now her business is on shaky ground. If it fails, she might as well kiss his respect-and her dream-good-bye. Her only hope? Convince the hottest bar in town to take on her product.

Luckily for her, the owner’s brother is sexy as sin and in need of a perfect girlfriend…

 

 

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

 

Review:   What a great book. This is the book version of the perfect romantic comedy movie. Paul and Libby have issues and they need each other so they make a deal. This is a great story of pretend becoming real and a sweet little happily ever after. I loved it!

 

Dirty Rich

Review: Tempted by Mr. Write by Sara Hantz

Review:  Tempted by Mr. Write by Sara Hantz

Title:  Tempted by Mr. Write

Series: What Happens in Vegas #7

Author: Sara Hantz

Publisher: Entangled: Lovestruck

Publication Date: September 28, 2015

Format: eBook

Genre:  Adult Contemporary Romance

Pages:  73 pages

Rating:  3/5 stars

Synopsis:

She thought she knew everything about romance. She was wrong.

After losing out on a plum assignment, a romance book conference is the last place journalist Sheridan Farlow wants to be. Love is a myth-like flattering changing room mirrors-and she has the past relationships to prove it. Her editor wants a story? Fine. She’ll write an entire exposé…only it doesn’t go quite according plan.

Bernard “Mac” Mackenzie is something of an anomaly in the romance-writing world-a man who writes romance and believes in it. And until he met Sheridan, Mac’s never felt anything close to the love he writes about. He needs more of her. In his arms, and in his bed.

Their attraction is explosive; even as Sheridan’s cynical side battles her growing feelings for Mac. But can she handle writing a biting exposé with an exposed heart on the line?

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

 

Review:

Short tale of insta-love at a romance book convention in Vegas. I didn’t really care for this book. It was too rushed and I didn’t have enough time to really connect with the characters. I think I would have liked it if the book were a bit longer and the romance had time to simmer and build some more, even at a novella length.

If you like a good insta-love story then this could very well be for you.

Dirty Rich

Review: Fear Us by B. B. Reid

Title:  Fear Us

Series: Broken Love – Book 3

Author: B. B. Reid

Pages:  252 pages

Rating:  4.5/5 stars

Synopsis:

KEENAN

It’s been four years since I ran away–from home, my brother, and my maybe father. I created a life free of expectations while pretending I wasn’t being hunted by all of the above. I managed to stay under the radar all this time… or so I thought. When big brother shows up and saves my ass, I’m forced to face everything I left behind, including her.

SHELDON

It’s been four years since I became another statistic. I made a lot of mistakes when it came to Keenan Masters. The first was loving him at all. He took something from me the night he left, and when I told him I still loved him, he told me he’d always hate me. After that, I learned how to be okay… until he came back. Gone was the boy who always knew how to make me laugh, and in his place was a cold, arrogant monster.

Review:

Not really sure what to say here…

While I believe you could read this as a standalone, I would not recommend it.  Read books 1 and 2.  There is so much backstory alluded to in this book that you really would miss out by not reading books 1 and 2.

In book three of the series, we are told Keenan’s story.  We were introduced to Keenan in books one and two as the funny and loyal younger brother to Keiran.  He was so different from Keiran.  Keenan had a heart of gold.  Then he was shot and betrayed in that order and he became a monster, a shell of his former self.

Fear Us tells Keenan and Sheldon’s (his long time girlfriend) story, or more accurately, their way back to each other.  It is dark and gritty and difficult to read at times.  If you don’t like a dark read where sex is used a power and punishment or a dominant/submissive (not in the traditional BDSM sense) then you may not like this book.  There is a happily ever after, sort of, but it sure is a hard ride to get there.

You may be wondering why I gave this 4.5 stars, well I’m somewhat invested in these characters and this series and truly this is the best book yet.  Think Penelope Douglas’s Fall Away series on crack.

 

Dirty Rich

Review: Grayson’s Vow by Mia Sheridan

Title:  Grayson’s Vow

Series: A Sign of Love

Author: Mia Sheridan

Pages:  340 pages

Rating:  4/5 stars

Synopsis:

A standalone romance from the New York Times bestselling author of Archer’s Voice.

Kira Dallaire is desperate.

Some challenges in life seem too hard to overcome. With little money, and even fewer options, the quick-witted and vibrant twenty-two-year-old needs to reinvent herself. Known for her generous heart and impulsive personality, she devises a survival plan, possibly her most outrageous idea yet.

Grayson Hawthorn is losing hope.

Some obstacles in life seem too hard to overcome. Betrayal definitely being one of them. With limited capital, and dwindling resources, he is attempting to resurrect his failing family vineyard, a self-imposed vow seemingly destined to fail. That is until a young woman enters his office with an outlandish, unexpected proposition impossible to refuse.

What begins as a temporary business arrangement, soon evolves into more as vivacious, spirited Kira challenges detached, arrogant Grayson to want more from life. To want more for himself. But as their wills clash and fiery passion ignites, they’ll realize that sometimes the past creates walls too difficult to climb, and that lies and deception rarely precede a happily every after.

As Kira and Grayson race toward their destiny, they will discover that some vows are meant to be broken, and others are worth risking everything for . . . even your very own heart.

THIS IS A STAND-ALONE SIGN OF LOVE NOVEL, INSPIRED BY LIBRA. New Adult Contemporary Romance: Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.

Review:   Oh my, Grayson!!  You are a bit of a hard one to love.  But then, Kira wasn’t always a peach either.

Grayson’s Vow is a standalone novel in Mia Sheridan’s A Sign of Love series.  This one based loosely on the sign, Libra.

Grayson’s Vow is the story of two people who are both a bit down on their luck who had family issues growing up.  Neither one trusts anyone and both are rather cynical to the idea of love.  They’ve both been burned by love before.  I don’t spoil in my reviews so I’ll leave it at that.

I loved both main characters at times and hated them at other, but that’s what makes a good a book, doesn’t it?  As with her other books in this series, there was turmoil and anger and mistrust and all the other good makings of a great, angsty romance.  In the end, though, we get our happily ever after.  When all was said and done I realized how much I truly liked the book.

Dirty Rich

Review: The Dark Ones by Rachel Van Dyken

Title:  The Dark Ones

Series: Book 1 Dark Ones Series

Author: Rachel Van Dyken

Pages:  242 pages

Rating:  5/5 stars

Synopsis:

To touch a Dark One is death.
To talk to an immortal is suicide.
Yet, I’ve been marked by both.
A Vampire.
And the King of the immortals.
My life is no longer my own.
And now I know the truth, my life was never mine to begin with.
It was theirs.
It’s always been theirs.

Review:   Another fantastic read by Rachel Van Dyken!  Seriously, this woman can crank out the books.

The Dark Ones is the first in her new vampire/archangels/other mystical beings series.  In the first book we meet the new cast of characters – Ethan, Genesis, Stephanie, Mason, Alex and Cassius.  Book one is the story of Genesis and Ethan.  It’s a romance through and through with a dark paranormal spin.  We get the same quirky one-liners that are present in all her books along with danger, friendship, love, and a happily ever after.

I found myself not sure who to actually root for, but in the end, I was happy with the outcome.  This is different from the many paranormal romances out there.  Of course, no two paranormal books are alike, but in my opinion, this one is near the top of my favorites list.

This is part of a series, but does have a happily ever after.

Amazon: The Dark Ones

Dirty Rich

Happy Release Day, Tiffany King!!! A Shattered Heart, A Fractured Lives Novel

Happy Release Day, Tiffany King!!

Today is the day for book two in the Fractured Lives series – A Shattered Heart by Tiffany King!!!

If you’re not familiar with the Fractured Lives series, it centers around a group of friends who were involved in a horrific car accident on the night of their high school graduation.  Not all of them survived.  Book one in the series was a highly emotional read with fantastic characters.  King’s writing draws you in and you can’t help all the feels.

Just look at the gorgeous cover!

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About the book:

From Tiffany King, USA Today Bestselling Author of A Shattered Moment, comes book 2 in the Fractured Lives Series.

A Shattered Heart is the story of Kathleen “Kat” Darby who discovers that although you can run away, you can never escape the ghosts from your past.

Physically, Kat Darby walked away relatively unscathed from the tragic car accident on the night of her high school graduation. Emotionally, her scars run much deeper from the loss of two of her best friends and her longtime boyfriend, Dan. Unable to face the constant reminders of the person she thought she would love forever, Kat leaves for twelve months to study art in France before returning home to start her life again.

Life in Florida proves more difficult than Kat anticipated with remnants of the accident still lingering. The only solace she can find is in her love for art until she runs into Brian, the younger brother of her deceased former boyfriend. Finding they can lean on each other, Kat and Brian find comfort in their emotional common bond. When an unexpected romance develops, Kat must decide if she is willing to face the ghosts from her past in order to love again.

Don’t delay!  Click one of the links below and grab this eBook today!!!  I know I will.  I’ll be posting my review later this week.

Amazon: A Shattered Heart

Apple: A Shattered Heart by Tiffany King

Kobo: A Shattered Heart

Don’t forget to add this to your Goodreads list!!

Goodreads: A Shattered Heart

Dirty Rich

4.5/5 star review for Ryker: A Cold Fury Hockey Novel by Sawyer Bennett

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Title:  Ryker: A Cold Fury Hockey Novel

Series: Carolina Cold Fury Hockey – Book 4

Author: Sawyer Bennett

Publisher: Loveswept     

Publication Date: September 8, 2015

Genre:  Sports Romance

Pages:  249 pages

Rating:  4.5/5 stars

 

Synopsis:  The rugged men of the Carolina Cold Fury hockey team are winning hearts once again in another scorching novel from New York Times bestselling author Sawyer Bennett.
 
The stakes have never been higher for Carolina Cold Fury goalie Ryker Evans. With his contract running out, he’s got a year left to prove he’s still at the top of his game. And since his wife left him, Ryker has been balancing life as a pro-hockey star and a single parent to two daughters. Management is waiting for him to screw up. The fans are ready to pounce. Everybody’s taking dirty shots—except for the fiery redhead whose faith in Ryker gives him a fresh start.
 
As the league’s only female general manager, Gray Brannon has learned not to mix business with pleasure. And yet even this tough, talented career woman can’t help breaking her own rules as she gives Ryker everything she’s got. She hopes their hot streak will last forever, but with Ryker’s conniving ex plotting to reclaim her man, the pressure’s on Gray to step up and save a tender new love before it’s too late.

 

 

Review:   Ryker: A Cold Fury Hockey Novel by Sawyer Bennett is an adult contemporary sport romance that is book four in the Carolina Cold Fury Hockey series.  If you have not read any of the previous books, this series centers on the super-hot players on the Carolina Cold Fury hockey team.

Ryker Evans is the current goalie for Carolina Cold Fury.  Gray Brannon is the new GM for the Cold Fury and the first woman named to the GM position in the league.  Gray is trying to prove herself as capable in the position despite being a woman.  Ryker is trying to prove he should remain the starting goalie after a missed goal in the playoffs the previous year that knocked the Cold Fury out of the playoffs.  Ryker and Gray give in to their attraction even though they have to see each other in secret for a number of reasons.  The book is about their growing affection and the challenges they face in their budding relationship. 

 

My only real critique is that while I found Gray to be a great female role model, I had a difficult time connecting with her on an emotional level.  I think that this may be purposeful on the part of Sawyer Bennett due to the nature of Gray’s personality (you will likely be able to see this, too, when you read the book), but even with that in mind, I liked the theme of the Gray character, but not necessarily the character herself. 

For those of you who have read all or some of the previous Carolina Cold Fury novels, you will find this one to be a bit different.  The hockey player finds a woman, falls in love and they have to deal with drama along the way—that is all the same.  The difference is the main characters—Ryker and Gray—they are both in their early thirties, more mature, settled.  This is a change from the other Cold Fury novels and I think this is a good thing.  If you are expecting an alpha male chasing after the weaker female, you will be disappointed.  That is not what this one is about.  There is romance, sex (although not nearly as descriptive as the previous books), falling in love, interference and even danger.  We also get to catch up with our favorite characters from the previous books. 

This is part of a series but can be read as a standalone.  The book is written in alternating POVs.  There is a HEA.

Recommended for readers 17+ due to sexual situations, alcohol/drug use and violence

Dirty Rich

Coming Soon – Screwball by Linda Morris —> (Release date 9/15/2015)

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Review:  Upcoming Release – Screwball by Linda Morris

 

Title:  Screwball

Series: Hard Hitters

 

Author: Linda Morris

Publisher: PENGUIN GROUP Berkley, NAL/Signet

Publication Date: September 15, 2015

Format: Ebook

Genre:  Romance

Pages:  227

Rating:  4/5 stars

 

Synopsis: Passion dominates the diamond in the second novel in this fun and flirty baseball romance series by the author of High Heat.
 
Paul Dudley, president of the Plainview Thrashers, is spinning out of control. Preserving his family’s baseball legacy in these tough times takes everything he’s got, and constant clashes with his father have left him struggling for authority over the team and even his own future. So when sports reporter Willow Bourne, a one-night-stand from a year ago, walks back into his life, he knows he can’t give into his feelings for her—no matter how strong they are.

Willow never expected to see Paul again, and she’s got her reasons for keeping her distance. Except the more time she spends around Paul, the harder it is to hide her secrets—or stop herself from falling head over heels.

As the sparks between them fly, Paul discovers what Willow has been concealing from him, leaving him with a difficult choice—keep the team his top priority or make his own legacy by following his heart…

 

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

 

Review:   I want to tell you I loved this book, but I didn’t.  I believe in honest reviews and I’m being honest here.  I enjoyed the book, right up until the end…then they lost me.

There is a lot to like in this book.  Paul and Willow are both flawed and full of issues they need to resolve.  They are better together, but it seems to take forever for them to get there.  Despite all their issues and secrets, the two are great together…once they finally get there.  See the theme here?

I like a good secret and I love angsty romances and this book included both of those things, but it just wasn’t quite enough for me.

Dirty Rich

Cover Reveal!!! Ginger Scott’s Wicked Reckless

Super excited to post the cover reveal for Ginger Scott’s new book Wicked Reckless!  Quick!  Scroll down and take a gander at the beautiful cover and read the blurb and excerpt.  I highly recommend the first book in the series – Wild Reckless.

October 20th!!!  Should be available for preorder soon.  🙂

Wicked Restless Cover Reveal + Excerpts

Those Harper boys are wild…

I am so excited to share the cover for Wicked Restless with you! This book felt so damn good to write. I loved living in Andrew’s head, for just a little while. I cannot wait for you to get to know Owen’s baby brother, and I think you’re going to like watching him grow up. Life gets messy, and love is wicked for this one.

Along with the cover, I’m sharing the synopsis, the first chapter and a small excerpt just to give you a little taste. Like Wild Reckless, this book can stand on its own, however, I think you might get a richer experience if you read Wild first – big brother Harper is quite the story. So check out the cover, then Facebook or Tweet me or drop me a line – I’d love to know what you think! Book releases Oct. 20th.

SYNOPSIS

Andrew Harper grew up in a house marked by tragedy. His older brother Owen did his best to shelter him, but you can only be protected from life’s pain for so long. Eventually, you end up just feeling numb…and isolated.

Loneliness was the one constant in Andrew’s life. Until one girl, met by chance in a high school hallway, changed everything. Emma Burke was a mystery and all that was beautiful in this world, the only air Andrew ever wanted to breathe. She took the lonely away, and filled it with hope and color, and Andrew would do anything to keep her safe, happy and whole.

But sometimes, what feels good and right is what ends up hurting us the most. And when Andrew and Emma are faced with an impossible decision, Andrew is tested to see just how far he’s willing to go for the girl who owns his heart.

Cuts are deep.

Scars are left behind.

And revenge beckons.

When Andrew finally gets his chance, in college, five years after his first love broke him completely, he finds out old feelings don’t really disappear just because you say you hate someone. The more he tries to avenge all that he believes he lost, the more he uncovers the real story of what happened years before.

Love is wicked. But a restless heart is never satisfied beating on its own. Can Andrew and Emma make it right before it’s too late, or will the ties that bind them now destroy their only chance at a future?

EXCERPT

“Alright, Harper. Who’s the target tonight?” Trent leans over me, startling me out of my trance, grabbing my next beer and taking it for his own.

“Hey, dickhead,” I say. He holds up a hand and orders another one, sliding it to me. “I’m pretty sure it’s your turn this time.”

His face falls and his complexion turns green. Trent and I have this game we play with one another. It started as a drunken dare a few months ago, when he goaded me into taking a girl home from Majerle’s Pub. I’m not suave; I don’t have great pick-up lines. I usually wait for girls to hit on me. I wait for easy. When Trent dared me, I came up with my own set-up—I stole a girl’s wallet. I returned it to her later, pretending I’d found it. She was so grateful she spent the rest of the night sitting on my lap, her arms looped around my neck, her lips sucking on my skin, her hands soon finding their way in my pants.

That first girl taught me to never bring any of them to our apartment. I go to theirs now. It’s easier to leave then it is to kick someone out.

“Fine, I’ll go. But next time, I get to pick your girl,” I say, tipping my beer back to drink what’s left before leaving the bottle on the bar behind me and pointing at my friend.

“Dude, whatever. You know it’s your turn anyway,” he says.
“My choice next time,” I remind him as I walk backward. I know it’s his turn, and I also know he doesn’t really like taking the dare. Trent’s too nice, and he usually ends up dating the girl for weeks after. He doesn’t like to be an asshole. Or maybe he just doesn’t like people to say bad things about him. Maybe there’s no difference between the two.

I couldn’t give a shit what people say about me. Let ’em talk.
I make one pass through the crowded bar, letting my eyes roam over the dance floor and the tables that line the back wall on the way to the bathrooms. It’s a Friday night, so there are lots of girls here. It’s the middle of the semester, too, so they’re all ready to party—no finals to worry about. There’s one group that seems like an easy target, a blonde on the end who keeps trying to talk the others into dancing. I hover around the restrooms waiting for my shot, and when she finally drags the group of girls with her out to the dance floor, I walk back through the crowd, passing their table.

So easy.

Their wallets and purses are all piled in the center of the table except for a red bag looped over the back of a chair, the ID sticking out of the top. I drag my hand along the bottom of the table, and as I pass the red handbag I grab the small plastic card poking from it, tucking it into the sleeve around my palm. I glance up to make eye contact with Trent, and raise the corner of my mouth in a smirk.

“Dude, you are so slick at this. Seriously, if you flunk out of the engineering program you should just turn to a life of crime.”

I slide into my stool and look away from him. I know he was just saying words, but the joke doesn’t sit well with me. I have a chip on my shoulder. It’s my fucking chip, and I earned it. He also doesn’t know how many nights I walk that line with Harley, fixing bets that are illegal in the first place. Trent just thinks I like the workout boxing gives me.

“Well…let’s see it? Who’s the lucky lady?”

I pull my sleeve loose from around my wrist and let the card slide out, flipping it over while I drink what’s left of my beer, and that’s when karma slaps me like a bitch.

She’s older. Of course she’s older. She’s twenty-one, too. But she looks…older. She also looks the same. Nobody looks good in an ID photo. Emma Burke looks like a dream. Her brown hair is just as I remember it, long waves around her bright pink cheeks, lips that stretch into this sensuous smile. I don’t know if it’s sensuous to anyone else, but to me, it sure as fuck is.
It’s also cruel. I swear to god she’s mocking me in her picture, her eyes shining through and looking at me, calling me stupid, telling me what a chump I am for thinking I was some sort of hero or something.

She’s slapping me in the face for being good and decent to her.

Don’t worry, Emma. I won’t ever be good and decent to you again.

RELEASES OCT. 20th

Add to your Goodreads shelf here: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26124170-wicked-restless

Dirty Rich

New Release – Anything But Broken by Joelle Knox

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Title:  Anything But Broken

Series: Book 1 in the Hurricane Creek Series

 

Author: Joelle Knox         

Publisher: Joelle Knox

Publication Date: August 25, 2015

Format: Ebook

Genre:  New Adult Romance, Contemporary Romance

Pages:  237 pages

 

Rating:  5/5

 

Synopsis: The first in a New Adult series about small towns, fast cars, bad boys and the girls who keep falling for them.

After five years, tragedy brings Hannah Casey back to Hurricane Creek to bury what’s left of her family. She’s flunking out of college, haunted by scandal, and the only person who cares is Sean Whitlow, an irresistible bad boy with a soft spot for her. The problem? He’s her dead sister’s ex.

Sean doesn’t bleed red, he bleeds motor oil. During the week, he struggles to turn his auto repair shop into a profitable business. But when Saturday night rolls around, he’s the reigning stock-car king of the local race track. He doesn’t know how to lose-or how to walk away and leave Hannah alone with her grief.

Between her grades and her wealthy family’s dark secrets, Hannah’s barely holding her life together. And the last thing Sean needs is to get tangled up with another Casey girl. As the attraction between them spins out of control, they’ll either find a love with no limits-or go up in flames.

 

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

 

Review:   This is my first Joelle Knox (who is apparently a writing team of Donna Herren and Bree Bridges) book and I’m hooked.  Her debut novel in the Hurricane Creek Series (a new adult contemporary romance series) is full of all kinds of feels.

There was so much more to this book than the blurb gives away.  There is pain and loss and heartbreak along with love and longing and recovery.  Knox’s writing makes all of these emotions realistic and I appreciate that.  She tackles some pretty serious subject matters that are the true focus of this book.

I have been harping on the realistic nature of characters.  While I don’t mind a larger-than-life secondary character, I prefer my heroes and heroines to be real and Knox does a fantastic job of making you feel and understand Sean and Hannah.  The character that surprised me the most, to the point of almost stealing the show, was Gibb.  He’s hard not to love.

I highly recommend this fantastically emotional book.  Let yourself fall in love with Hurricane Creek.

This is a standalone told from a dual POV with an HEA.

Also, watch for the second book in the series – Anything But Perfect coming in early 2016!!!