Truly delightful festive romance from Annabeth

Better Not PoutBetter Not Pout by Annabeth Albert

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Annabeth Albert + a Military MC + a festive setting = complete win!

I knew going into this one that I would – more likely than not – end up loving it as it had all the hallmarks of the great formula which has worked so well in Annabeth’s Out of Uniform series (and if you’ve not read that yet, get on it!

This is magic, a lonely Sergeant Major being pushed into retirement after 28 years service, a younger man who lives in the town he grew up in, surrounded by his extended family and a support network but never taking risks.

They meet when Nick is cajoled by his Commanding Officer into taking over the role of Santa that her husband usually plays when he’s invalided out following a heart attack. Nick is not a jolly Santa at all, he’s a serious character whose really only ever known the Army life.

While there is tragedy in his past, it’s not dwelled upon, it’s something he’s pushed deep inside and so Teddy’s open and expressive way of life and the closeness he has with his own family, even though they too have had a similar painful experience, is something he’s not sure how to deal with.

I loved watching Teddy slowly break down all Nick’s walls, not even deliberately, he just is Teddy and Nick slowly realises there might be an alternative to living the remainder of his days alone in a Florida setting he’s only heading for because he promised an old Army buddy he’d invest in his tour business.

Teddy’s not all fluff though, he knows he’s got his own issues and the safety and security of his small hometown where he knows everyone is just one of the things which holds him back. Nick opens up a future he hadn’t thought was possible.

I love me a good Christmas/festive romance and I love me a good military romance, especially with an age gap and complete opposites attract, and Annabeth delivers on all three. Put this one at the top of your reading list, it’ll make a lovely present!

#ARC kindly received from the publishers Carina Press, via NetGalley, in return for an honest and unbiased review

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Release Blitz: Ride or Dye by Aimee Nicole Walker

Ride or Dye | Aimee Nicole Walker

Curl Up and Dye Mysteries #6

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MM ROMANCE

RELEASE DATE: 12.09.18

PHOTOGRAPHER: Wander Aguiar

COVER ARTIST: Jay Aheer/Simply Defined Art

MODELS: Jacob and Matthew

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BLURB

Gabe and Josh Roman-Wyatt have been living life in the fast lane. Demanding jobs, precocious twin toddlers, an ever-growing circle of friends, and a menagerie of pets means their home is filled with love and laughter but very few quiet moments for the happy couple. Gabe’s solution is to plan a surprise vacation at a perfect hideaway where the two of them can slow things down and reconnect.

Tarlington House, a historic home located on Edisto Island in South Carolina, hosts an annual murder-mystery event which will allow Josh to use the skills he learned from his all-time favorite television detective to solve the case. The serene setting is perfect for fun days in the sun, passionate lovemaking under the stars, and a healthy wager between husbands to see who can plan the best date.

But when the other guests arrive, the guys find themselves surrounded by liars and cheaters who will say or do anything to win, reminding them there’s no place like Blissville.

When a guest is killed during a vicious storm that knocks out the power and phone lines, Josh and Gabe’s murder mystery role-playing becomes a real-life whodunnit. Serve and protect will take on a deeper meaning for Gabe when he’s torn between upholding the law and protecting his husband from a ruthless killer.

Ride or Dye includes sexy sunrises, snarky banter, and swoon-worthy romance. It is the sixth and final book in the Curl Up and Dye Mysteries, which must be read in order.

Ride or Dye contains sexually explicit material intended for adults 18 and older.

Ride or Dye Teaser 2

EXCERPT

I followed Josh into our bathroom and undressed while he turned on the faucet to let the water heat up. “Let me,” I said when he reached for the hem of his T-shirt. Baring his skin never got old, and I knew it never would. Once he was naked, Josh adjusted the water temperature then put the stop in the drain so the tub would fill. I kept my hands on his body the entire time then pulled him to me for a kiss while we waited for the water to rise.

“I love the way you cherish me,” Josh whispered against my lips. “I appreciate all the thought you put into this vacation. I adore being just us again.”

“I do love and cherish you, Sunshine. It feels like these last few years have flown by like a speeding train. At least at this moment with you, life doesn’t feel so damn hectic and insane.” I reached around to glide my hand over his taut ass. “I want to slow it down and soak up every second I have with you.”

Josh reached over and shut off the faucet. “We’ll start with a soak in this amazing tub.”

“That’s borderline cheesy, Sunshine,” I said, stepping into the tub. The water temperature was perfect, but Josh always knew just how I liked everything. “We are a snarky family, not a cheesy one.”

“I believe I came up with that rule,” he reminded me.

“Well, you nearly broke it.”

Josh waited for me to get settled before he stepped over the side of the tub and sank down in the water between my parted thighs. “Oh, hello there, Captain.”

How could I not be rock hard with his glorious ass pressed against my cock and balls? Thoughts of soaking my body turned into rowdy fucking. “Turn around and straddle me,” I whispered in his ear. Josh must’ve liked the husky timbre in my voice because he shivered deliciously before doing as I requested.

Josh let his head fall back as soon as our hardened cocks pressed against each other. I took advantage of his exposed neck, knowing how sensitive it was and how horny my kisses made him.

The urge to fuck grew stronger every second he was in my arms, but why rush? We were on vacation. We didn’t have to set alarms to be up early for work nor would our kids wake us at some ungodly hour. I could kiss and savor him in ways I hadn’t in a very long time.

I left no part of my husband’s body untouched, and he did the same to mine. I relearned all the types of kisses that made him shake with want and need. Neither of us let up on our sensual attack until we both trembled against each other.

As much as I wanted to be inside Josh, I took my time drying his body then mine before we kissed our way to the bedroom. Turning the bedside lamps off wasn’t even a consideration because I didn’t want to miss a single expression on his face when we joined our bodies.

I loved the way he reached for me, trusting his heart, body, and soul in my hands. No matter how desperate my lust became, I took my time stretching him open with lubed fingers because I only wanted cries of pleasure crossing his parted lips.

I pressed my mouth to Josh’s, tasting the passionate cries escaping him when I finally slid home and was fully seated. Josh wrapped his arms around my shoulders and hooked his legs around the back of my thighs, making sure every part of him enveloped every part of me. Just like that, my plans to love him slow and tender evaporated.

About The Author

Aimee Nicole Walker Logo

I am a wife and mother to three kids, three dogs, and a cat. When I’m not dreaming up stories, I like to lose myself in a good book, cook or bake. I’m a girly tomboy

who paints her fingernails while watching sports and yelling at the referees.

I will always choose the book over the movie. I believe in happily-ever-after. Love inspires everything that I do. Music keeps me sane.

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Release Blitz: Darcy by RJ Scott & Meredith Russell

 

Darcy | RJ Scott & Meredith Russell

Boyfriends for Hire #1

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Length: 40,000 words approx.

Cover Design: Meredith Russell

Darcy 400

Blurb

 

Darcy’s newest assignment is to play the role of boyfriend to a wealthy socialite but never expected the intense attraction to his date’s brother. Falling for Adrian is dangerous and certainly not part of the plan.

Adrian has been as unlucky in love as his sister, but he doesn’t approve of hiring a boyfriend, whatever the reason. Until he meets Darcy. Then he comes to realize that love can happen in the most unexpected of ways.

One week. That is all the two men needed to fall in lust, but will they have a lifetime to fall in love?

RJ’s goal is to write stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, that hint of a happily ever after.RJ is the author of the over one hundred novels and discovered romance in books at a very young age. She realized that if there wasn’t romance on the page, she could create it in her head, and is a lifelong writer.

She lives and works out of her home in the beautiful English countryside, spends her spare time reading, watching films, and enjoying time with her family.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit and has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.

She’s always thrilled to hear from readers, bloggers and other writers. Please contact via the following links below:

Email RJ (rj@rjscott.co.uk)

 

Meredith Russell lives in the heart of England. An avid fan of many story genres, she enjoys nothing less than a happy ending. She believes in heroes and romance and strives to reflect this in her writing. Sharing her imagination and passion for stories and characters is a dream Meredith is excited to turn into reality.

 

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Release Blitz: Risk Taker by Lily Morton

 

Risk Taker | Lily Morton

Mixed Messages #3

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MM Romance

Release Date: 22.07.18

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Cover Design: Natasha Snow

AMAZON US: https://amzn.to/2Oal9WI

AMAZON UK: https://amzn.to/2LD9u0F

BLURB

Being in love with your best friend is hard.

Henry’s the odd man out. All his friends are settling down, and his reputation as the Hook-Up King of London seems more like a curse than a blessing these days. Especially when it keeps photojournalist Ivo, his best friend and the brilliant man he’s loved since they were fifteen, at arm’s length. But that’s where Ivo wants him, right? Putting aside his feelings, Henry decides to give up casual sex and look for the real deal. After all, he has no chance with Ivo – or does he?

Henry is everything to Ivo. Best friend, soul mate, the one person who has never let him down. The one person he is loyal to above everything and everyone. But Henry’s in a box marked best friend and that’s where Ivo’s kept him for nearly twenty years, despite steadily falling in love with the gentle man. And besides, why would Henry want to date Ivo? Burned out and injured, he’s the walking embodiment of damaged.

Distance has helped Henry and Ivo keep a lid on their attraction, but when they find themselves in the same city for a change—Ivo hurt and needing assistance, and Henry more than willing to provide it—the two best friends grow closer than ever, forcing a realization, and a decision. Risk their friendship for their hearts? Or can they have both?

From the bestselling author of Rule Breaker and Deal Maker comes a tender love story about two best friends who are perfect for each other, and always have been – if only they knew it.

This is the third book in the Mixed Messages series, but it can be read as a standalone.

RiskTaker-Teaser1

EXCERPT

The bell in the shop rings as the door opens, and I smile as I feel his presence behind me.

“Is there a particular reason, Henry, why I am standing in an art supply shop rather than sitting in a perfectly good restaurant eating lunch?”

I shift the basket over my arm and turn to face one of my best friends. “Gabe, you really should be a bit more highbrow. Otherwise, you’ll never keep that pretty totty you’ve got.”

His perfect-looking face scrunches up in disgust. “Totty. What an utterly disgusting word.”

“I know,” I say cheerfully, turning back to the shelf I was perusing and chucking in another tube of Rose Gold oil paint.

“Makes you sound like your father,” he says snippily, and I nudge him.

“Now that’s petty. Anyway, I’m nothing like him. I have all my own teeth, and my complexion is milky-white perfection, if I do say so myself.”

He snorts. “Apart from those freckles.”

I shake my head and touch a finger to my face and my bête noire, the multitude of freckles that span my nose. “I wish that cream I got off the internet at uni had worked,” I say forlornly, and he laughs loudly, making it echo around the shop.

“I did so enjoy the way your face turned that shade of green. Made you look like Grotbags from The Rod Hull and Emu Show.” He reaches over and grabs a tube of paint. “It was this shade precisely. Hmm, Pistachio Green.” He chucks it into my basket, and I patiently remove it and put it back on the shelf.

I toss a couple of tubes of Prussian Blue into the basket while he leans casually against the shelf looking like the perfect picture of a lawyer in his dark grey, hand-tailored suit.

“Why are we here, Henry? Because if you’re thinking of giving up the law and becoming an artist, I really will have to stage an intervention.”

I laugh. “I think I’d make a very good artist.”

“Piss artist, more likely,” he says, poking my arm with one long finger. “So, if we’re not shopping for what would be the shortest career in art history, who are we shopping for?” His gaze sharpens, and I mentally groan because aside from Ivo there is no one who knows me better. “Hmm. Would we be shopping for a six foot four blond photographer who a certain red-headed lawyer has had the hots for, for years?”

“That’s such a non-Gabe expression,” I sneer. “Has Dylan been influencing you?”

He looks startled and shakes his head. “Those fucking phrases of his and Jude’s. They’re messing up my vocabulary. Yesterday one of the senior partners asked me if I was okay and I said I was cool. He went out and asked his assistant to tell maintenance that the building heating needed to be turned up.”

I laugh helplessly, and he gives me a rueful grin. “Don’t distract me, Henry. Is Ivo back?” I nod slowly and his expression darkens. “Is he okay?”

I shrug, picking up a brush and studying it intently so I don’t have to look at him. “Not really. He’s got a hole from a fucking bullet in his side, and broken ribs and bruises all over him from being near a car bomb when it went off.”

“What?” he says instantly. “Is he okay?” Gabe has always had a complicated relationship with Ivo. He loves being with him, and they can talk for hours, but he hates the effect that he unknowingly has on my life.

“He’s fine. Silas checked him over.”

He checks with his hand out to grab the brush from me. “Henry, isn’t Silas a vet?”

I shrug. “He was very good at biology at school.”

“I was good at it too. You don’t see me turning up at St Bart’s Hospital and performing a few appendectomies during my lunch hour though, do you?”

“The only biology you were any good at was the male anatomy kind,” I say tartly, and chuck the brush in the basket.

He smiles. “That I was. I’m a very learned man in that area.”

I snort. “You’re practically PhD material.”


Lily Morton Logo

Lily writes contemporary romance novels, and specialises in hot love stories with a good dose of humour.

Lily lives in sunny England with her husband and two children, all of whom claim that they haven’t had a proper conversation with her since she bought her first Kindle.

She has spent her life with her head full of daydreams and decided one day to just sit down and start writing about them. In the process she discovered that she actually loved writing, because how else could she get to spend her time with hot, funny men!

She loves chocolate and Baileys and the best of all creations – chocolate Baileys! Her lifetime’s ambition is to have a bath in peace without being shouted by one of her family.

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Utterly delightful romance with a shade of ghostly historical

The Captain and the Cricketer  (The Captivating Captains, #2)The Captain and the Cricketer by Catherine Curzon  &  Eleanor Harkstead

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

So wonderfully British in the finest tradition of Jeeves & Wooster only with a romance instead of the quintessential Master and Butler relationship of the original.

Although this has a present day setting, the tone is very much of that halcyon period between the Wars when England’s finest spent their days listening to the sound of leather on willow, eating cucumber sandwiches and romping through tiny little villages.

George and Henry are utterly delightful, childhood friends who fell out over a missing cricket trophy but who are still madly in love with the other.

This whole book just brought a massive smile to my face as the dastardly villains got their comeuppance in full view of the whole village, the England cricket team and a full set of TV cameras.

The secondary mystery plot and the aura of ghostly lovers from two centuries ago only adds to the book’s charms.

#ARC kindly provided by the authors in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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Release Blitz: Catch Me by Beth Bolden

Catch Me | Beth Bolden

Kitchen Gods #2

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M/M ROMANCE

RELEASE DATE: 10.06.18

Catch Me Cover

COVER DESIGN: AngstyG

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BLURB

Chef Wyatt Blake is finally ready to move on from his thankless job. He gets no wiggle room, zero praise, plenty of abuse, and on a good day, he might only spend twelve hours in the Terroir kitchens. A friend of his recommends a private chef position, but despite the boost in pay, Wyatt doesn’t want to babysit some spoiled, rich LA family.

Imagine his shock when the family isn’t a Kardashian clone, but Ryan Flores, the only professional baseball player to ever come out of the closet.

Ryan is also at a career crossroads. His team’s management wants to see his more responsible side, which means no more late night hookups and no more adrenaline-charged stunts. When his agent suggests he find a fake boyfriend to give him an air of domesticity, he’s only reluctantly interested.

Until Ryan goes to a local bar and spies the cute private chef he’s supposed to be interviewing the next day. Maybe a quieter life wouldn’t be so bad, as long as Wyatt is part of it?

Wyatt believes Ryan could be more than just a crappy boss, but he isn’t sure about leaving the kitchen for the life of a professional boyfriend. Especially when he wants the reality so much more than the fantasy.

Catch Me Teaser 1

EXCERPT

And he was the epitome of the California boy, Ryan thought as he watched Wyatt carrying his board towards the sand. Blond hair bright under the sun, the tall lanky build, all that tanned skin rippling with muscle.

Ryan hadn’t thought there was a place he could look better than naked in his bed, but he was surprised to discover that he’d been wrong.

There was something in the quicksilver of Wyatt’s smile as he turned to make sure Ryan was still following him. It made Ryan want more from him than just the admittedly mind-blowing sex they had had, which was something he’d thought he’d left behind years ago.

He thought about texting Tabitha and telling her she might be right, but she was already insufferable enough. Besides, if he didn’t tell her, he didn’t put it into words and the truth, while eye-opening, was also fucking terrifying.

“You coming?” Wyatt turned back fully this time, gracing Ryan not only with a quick glimpse of his bright smile, but his entire self. He looked worried, and Ryan wondered how long he’d been spacing out. Not something he usually did—and he’d already spent the morning doing it.

“Sorry,” Ryan apologized. “I was distracted by such a fantastic view.”

“I’ve always loved Huntington Beach,” Wyatt replied.

Ryan snorted. “Not the view I was talking about.”

Wyatt didn’t say anything but the look on his face was enough for Ryan to know that comment wouldn’t always go un-remarked upon. Eventually they would have to address the sexual tension simmering away between them. Eventually they would have to do something about it. And that day was one Ryan eagerly awaited and dreaded in equal parts.

“We gonna surf?” Wyatt asked as they set up their little camp over by one of the piers.

Ryan had tossed the wax over to Wyatt a few minutes before, and had been fidgeting with his tow strap since. He’d wanted to come out here and let the sun and the sand and the waves exorcise his bad mood, but now he wasn’t sure he even wanted to go in the water.

He wanted to sit on the sand and look at the sunlight on Wyatt’s hair, and ask him to tell him more about culinary school and Chicago and Terroir. Even about that nutjob Aquino.

Ryan was not used to wanting to pick social interaction over the adrenaline rush. It was weird, and he wasn’t sure he liked it.

“We’re here, aren’t we?” Ryan asked, shooting Wyatt a disbelieving look, even though all the hesitation had been on his end. He wasn’t ready to admit to anyone—never mind Wyatt—that he’d been contemplating something so out of character. “Last in the water buys burgers on the way home.

 

About The Author

Beth Bolden Logo

Beth Bolden lives in Portland, Oregon with her supportive husband. She wholly believes in Keeping Portland Weird, but wishes she didn’t have to make the yearly pilgrimage up to Seattle to watch her Boston Red Sox play baseball. She’s a fan of fandoms, and spends too much of her free time on tumblr.

Beth has been writing practically since she learned the alphabet. Unfortunately, her first foray into novel writing, titled Big Bear with Sparkly Earrings, wasn’t a bestseller, but hope springs eternal. She’s published eight novels and two novellas, with Catch Me, the next novel in the Kitchen Gods series, releasing in May 2018.

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This YA first love story was quite a surprise

Spooning Leads to ForkingSpooning Leads to Forking by B.A. Smith

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

This was a surprise, not a bit what I thought it was going to be and actually quite an interesting take on that mad, crazy emotional headrush you get the first time you fall in love.

It’s a sex fest though, these guys are 17 and horny and at it all the time but it’s also realistic and quite brutally honest about finding your way from a passing friendship into a weekend long orgy for two!

There’s a kind of sense to the whole thing though, it fit the narrative of two guys who just suddenly clicked with both sexual chemistry but also on an emotional level.

It ventures slightly off track with each pair’s families, they’re all just a little bit odd, but again, they’re realistic too. Some parents are just benignly apathetic about what their kids are up to without being mean arses.

Overall, even with it being a YA, which I rarely read, I found myself eagerly flipping pages to see where it would go next. Oddly enough, I could see these two together forever right from school.

#ARC kindly provided by the author in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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