Tag Archives: MM

Book Blast: Little Harbour by Sophia Soames

Little Harbour | Sophia Soames

Cover Artist: Miriam Latu

Genre/s: MM, contemporary, romance

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length: 135,377 words/468 pages

It is a standalone story and is the first book in a series of stories set in Scandinavia.

Buy Links

Available on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Add on Goodreads

Blurb

This is a story about life and death. Because there has never been anyone else for Jens. He had been with Sofie almost all his life, from the day they met at school when they were fifteen, until the day she took her final breath against his chest. She was always everything to him. As he was to her. He never doubted that. Not for a minute.

This is a story of hope, where Axel Kleve keeps himself too busy to even stop and think. Work, sleep, eat, repeat. He loves his job as a Midwife at Oslo’s University Hospital, He’s good at lecturing and training, and now he has somehow been pushed into running “Ask Axel,” a midwifery blog on PNN.no –  the parenting-site everyone in Norway trusts.

This is a tale of second chances. Jens, he doesn’t let himself think of Axel. He doesn’t think of Axel at all. And Axel needs to stop longing for that one crush he’s never been able to leave behind. It’s just plain ridiculous. He should have got over Jens Sommerfeldt years ago.

A song about family and love and happiness found in small doses. Of trying to parent when you don’t know how. Of finding love where you always knew it lived.

This is the story of a little harbour. The place in your heart you didn’t know was there.

Excerpt

“Can I have a hug? Please?” Axel asks. He can’t help it. He needs one. He needs to know that Jens is still Jens. His Jens. The one who hugged him every time they met up all those years ago. Jens always hugged him to say hello. Always hugged him goodbye. Always. He needs Jens to still be Jens.

Jens doesn’t hug him. Jens body slams him, so hard Axel thinks he might fall over. Stumbling backwards while Jens’ arms are squeezing him, so hard he can’t breathe, and there is hot breath against Axel’s neck and it is so Jens. All-consumingly Jens. All him.

“I fucking missed you so much.” Jens whispers, his voice hoarse and quiet.

I’m all yours.” Axel whispers back. “I always was.”

About the Author

Sophia Soames should be old enough to know better but has barely grown up. She has been known to fangirl over tv-shows, has fallen in and out of love with more pop stars than she dares to remember, and has a ridiculously high-flying (un-) glamourous real-life job.

Her long-suffering husband just laughs at her antics. Their children are feral. The AuPair just sighs. She lives in a creaky old house in rural London, although her heart is still in Scandinavia.

Discovering that the stories in her head make sense when written down has been part of the most hilarious midlife crisis ever and she hopes it may long continue.

Author Links

Facebook: Sophia Soames

Twitter: @sophiasoames

instagram: sophiasoames

Tumblr: sophia soames


Giveaway

Come and enter a super chilled Scandinavian style laid back competition. Just sit back, follow Sophia on social media if you wish, and enter to win a cozy Little Harbour inspired ‘Hygge’ pack featuring a Little Harbour printed tea towel and an Amazon £10 gift card.

And it wouldn’t be Scandinavian without FIKA, so I will throw in a $5 Starbucks gift voucher too. How is that for a relaxing prize?

Competition ends December 22 and 3 (yes 3!) lucky winners will be drawn to win a Hygge pack each. Good luck!

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/1c2e23811/

BOOK BLAST SCHEDULE

LITTLE HARBOUR

Hosted by Gay Book Promotions

A story of love and grief, second chances, and family life. An MM GFY-ish romance, featuring a hoard of feral children, a stolen pram, a Midwifery blog and an ill-advised stint on TV.

Oh yes and a man who has lost hope and another who never gave it up.

Release Blitz: Shadowing the Light by Miranda Turner

Shadowing the Light |  Miranda Turner

The Bearer of Truth #1

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GAY URBAN FANTASY

RELEASE DATE: 17.12.18

Cover by Lou Harper

Universal Link: http://a.co/d/7yULzrg

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BLURB

“Everybody has their own agenda. Everybody.”

Hunted for the unique blood that runs through his veins, half-angel, half-demon Gabriel Sinclair lives without expectations. On the run from forces on both sides of an ancient conflict, he searches for strength and peace in a world which only seeks to use him.

When Gabriel is forced to stop running, assigned a team—and a mate—he doesn’t want, and reluctantly tasked with a mission, he must overcome obstacles both real and imagined. Otherwise, the world as he knows it, and the mate he’s reluctantly come to care for, may cease to exist.

“I will do as the Creator bids me. Always.”

Evander Ryan is special, and he knows it. The final handcrafted immortal warrior for the light, he is the Creator’s greatest masterpiece. For fifty-eight years, he’s lived his life in black and white, coddled by his Maker, while leading his team to countless victories against their enemies. Those fights were easy. Working with a new, uncooperative mate who sees the world in shades of gray? Less so.

As Evander’s eyes are opened to the existence of light warriors who are not good, dark warriors who are, and the wider world of supernatural beings, he learns nothing is as he thought it was, and his mate isn’t who he thought he was either. Maybe there’s something to be said for not always following the rules. . .

 

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EXCERPT

Gabriel sighed. Every fucking time he tried to relax something went wrong. Why did the drama always find him? “Do you need help?”

“If you would be so kind as to get me out of here without them seeing me, I would be very grateful.”

“Sure, man. I’ll make sure they don’t notice you. See the doorway right there?” Dubhlainn nodded. “That’s the back exit. I’ll provide a distraction, you get out there. I’ll meet you four alleyways to the left in fifteen minutes.” Gabriel looked over his shoulder at the two gigantic fae warriors Dubhlainn was running from. “Uh, maybe twenty.

“Go…now. Keep your head down,” Gabriel commanded him. Then he swung around off his stool and affected a drunken stumble, pulling a dollar out of his pocket. Walking across the room, he acted like he was heading for the jukebox on the other side of the bar. As he drew even with the two fae, he stuck the dollar in their face, asking them if they had change. As he asked, he swayed too far forward, losing his balance and taking the two large men down.

“Oh…I’m…I’m shhhh…shhorry. My bad.” Gabriel hiccupped. “I didn’t…shee you there.”

“Get. Off.” The warriors began trying to push Gabriel off them, but he kept stumbling and falling back onto them, clinging like a barnacle to their bodies to keep them from getting up. After a few minutes of struggling, they managed to extricate themselves from Gabriel and made a mad dash for the back door.

Smiling to himself, Gabriel stood up. Steady on his feet, he slinked out after them, intending to make sure his new friend got away safely.

Staying far enough behind them that they wouldn’t notice him, Gabriel followed the warriors through the alleyways. They kept trying to scent the air, but with all the scents in city alleys, it was almost impossible to single out any one being unless you were a were of some sort. Eventually, they turned the wrong way to continue their search, and Gabriel made his way to the meeting spot.

When he arrived, Dubhlainn wasn’t alone. “Fuck.” Why the hell was Michael there? “Was this one of your stupid fucking tests?” Gabriel asked.

“No, Gabriel. I was here to find you and saw you providing a distraction for the fae. I followed him when he left. I assure you, I’ve never met him before in my life.”

Gabriel rolled his eyes. “Way to be creepy, Michael. Dubhlainn, are you okay?”

“I am well, Gabriel. I will take my leave of you now. I would like to offer a token of my appreciation.” Bowing at the waist, Dubhlainn handed Gabriel a gold coin the likes of which he’d never seen. “Do not lose it. Its worth is beyond anything money can buy.”

Gabriel and Michael stared down at the coin. “What’s it fo…” Gabriel looked up only to realize Dubhlainn had disappeared.

“What the fuck?” Gabriel spun around, searching for any sign Dubhlainn hadn’t been a figment of his imagination. Well, the coin he now slipped into his pocket was real enough.

“I must say, I do meet the most interesting people when I’m with you.” Michael chuckled.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Miranda Turner is a single mom of eight living outside a small, hippie town in the middle of Ohio. She’s surrounded by children, chickens, and one temperamental editor kitty who is silently judging her on a daily basis.

She is a voracious reader and an editor who decided she had different stories to tell. She firmly believes a happily ever after is there for everyone, but she likes to make her characters earn it.

Amazon Author: https://amzn.to/2UOn6ew

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authormturner/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/author.miranda.turner/

Email: author.miranda.turner@gmail.com

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Release Blitz: Omega Defiant by Dessa Lux

Omega Defiant | Dessa Lux

Cover Artist: Mara Williams

Release Date: November 29, 2018

Genre/s: Paranormal, Werewolf, A/B/O, mPreg

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length: 119 000 words/350 pages

It’s the second book in the series but can be read as a standalone.

Buy Links:

Available on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Add on Goodreads

Blurb

Omega werewolf Casey Niemi has grown up in the safety of his adopted pack. He can’t remember what took him from his original family–and he doesn’t want to, even if it might explain why getting too close to an alpha makes him panic.

He’s moving on with his life and totally has it under control–until a new alpha shows up and throws Casey’s world completely off kilter.

Alpha werewolf Adam Vinick wants to improve the lives of omegas through the power of rigorous scientific research. After the death of his omega dad, he left his father’s pack and has never looked back.

But he’s been having a hard time finding omegas for his study, and his life’s work may be cancelled if he can’t show results soon. When he turns to the Niemis for help, he’s not expecting an omega like Casey.

Adam and Casey have instant chemistry–the kind that explodes on contact. When the Niemis send Casey to assist Adam on his research trip, enemies become reluctant allies and it doesn’t take long for them to argue their way into each other’s beds.

But can their long road lead them to each other’s hearts?

About the Author

Author 400

Dessa Lux also writes fanfic as Dira Sudis and has one novel published as Dira Lewis through Less Than Three Press. She is a confirmed Midwesterner, a librarian, and a Diet Coke addict, but she does not own a cat.

Author Links

Blog/Website

Facebook

Twitter: @DessaLux

Tumblr: dessa-lux

REVIEW TOUR SCHEDULE

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Review Tour: Trusting Jack by Ruby Moone

Trusting Jack | Ruby Moone

MC Securities #1

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Length: 45,000 words approx.

Cover Design: Meredith Russell

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Blurb

 

With only a few days to go until Christmas, Michael Cross has to admit there is something amiss about his latest employee, Jack Whelan.

Quiet, jumpy, thin… he never seems to eat. He is also incredibly gorgeous with dark spiky hair that Michael aches to touch. But as his boss, Jack is off limits. And when it comes to relationships, he…well, he sucks.

Jack Whelan is at the end of his tether. He’s living rough in the middle of winter, and paying off a massive debt, so getting a job with MC Securities is a lifeline. His new boss is also the hottest guy ever. Geeky, broody, and scarily clever.

When Michael stumbles upon the reality of Jack’s life, he offers to help. But as Michael’s feelings deepen, and Jack’s terrible past catches up with him, Michael has to decide between believing in the awful truth that is staring him in the face, or trusting Jack.

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Dec 10  OMGReadsKimmers’ Erotic Book BanterDec 12 – Amy’s MM Romance ReviewsDec 14 – Mainely StoriesBook Corner ReviewsThe Blogger GirlsDec 17 – Mirrigold: Mutterings & MusingsMegan’s Media MelangeSexy Erotic XcitingDec 19 – Scattered Thoughts & Rogue WordsBayou Book JunkieDec 21 – Valerie UllmerBook Review by Virginia LeeLillian FrancisGay Media Reviews

About The Author

My name is Ruby Moone and I love books. All kinds of books. My weakness is for romance, and that can be any kind, but I am particularly fond of historical and paranormal.

I decided to write gay romance after reading some fantastic books and falling in love with the genre, so am really thrilled to have my work published here. The day job takes up a lot of my time, but every other spare moment finds me writing or reading.

I live in the north west of England with my husband who thinks that I live in two worlds. The real world and in the world in my head…he probably has a point!

Social Media

Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/RubyMoone/?ref=bookmarks

Twitter – @RubyMooneWriter

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/rubymoone/

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Review Tour: Home For Christmas by RJ Scott

Home For Christmas | RJ Scott

A Texas Story

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK

Length: 45,000 words approx.

Cover Design: Meredith Russell

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Blurb

Can Connor show River a real family Christmas?

When Connor finds River on the roof of the campus admin building, he doesn’t know what to do. His friend is drunk, and shouting into a snowstorm, a bottle of vodka in his hand. The easy part is getting River down; the hard part is insisting River comes home with Connor for Christmas.

River doesn’t have a family, or any place outside of college that he calls home. Not that it matters to him; he’s happy being alone for Christmas in his budget motel, watching reruns of Elf. Only, Connor keeps telling wildly improbable stories of the perfect family celebrations at his parents’ ranch in Texas, and it’s wearing River down. He didn’t ask to be kidnapped. He didn’t want to fall in love with the entire Campbell-Hayes family. But he does.

From one Christmas to the next. This is Connor’s year to rescue River, and himself, for them both to mess things up, make things right, fall in lust and finally, for Connor to show the man he loves what being part of a family can mean.

Excerpt

Chapter 1

Connor skidded to a stop.

The cold December wind whipped around his face, ice and snow knifing into his skin, and at first, he couldn’t make sense of what he was seeing. 

Maybe he should have stopped, called 911, shouted for help, but it could’ve been too late, so he’d acted on instinct alone. He’d taken the four flights of stairs at a run, reaching the roof and throwing the door open. His lungs burned from the freezing air and his voice had gone. What now?

Why was River on the roof in nothing but jeans and a T-shirt, clearly drunk? Why was he standing on the ledge, his feet spread, his arms wide, and a bottle of vodka in his hand?

When the girl from his floor told him she’d seen River go up to the roof, he thought she’d meant something else. He often went up there to read or watch life go by. But not in a snow storm. 

He didn’t expect to see River standing on the ledge in the snow.

Don’t scare him. He’ll stumble and fall. He might jump. 

A gust of air slapped Connor. River swayed to the left but righted himself with the casual grace of a gymnast. River wouldn’t fall by accident. Hell, Connor had seen him balance on one hand on a diving board, perfectly still, before falling gracefully and accurately with spins and pikes into the water below. He’d never seen River falter.

“River?” Connor asked, only an inch from grabbing River’s shirt and holding him tight. He saw River tense, but he didn’t wobble in surprise or slip and fall to the ground.

“I canbalance. Look at me.” River sounded so damn proud of himself. 

Connor took a small step forward, finally being able to hold River’s shirt, hoping to hell that would be enough to stop River from falling.

“Come down, buddy.”

River lifted the bottle over his head, sloshing alcohol over his hair, his tongue flicking out to catch any that ran over his face. 

“Fuck,” he shouted.

Connor tugged at him, not knowing what else to do. “Come back,” he said, loud enough that River actually looked at him. 

“Leave me alone,” he said.

“I’m not leaving you on the roof,” Connor snapped and got a better hold of River, hooking a finger into his belt. River wasn’t a big guy, a diver’s body, no more than five ten and a buck sixty soaking wet, but if he fell, would Connor be able to hold him long enough to save him? 

River pulled against Connor’s grip, and for a second the world stopped turning as Connor had to use his entire body weight to keep him upright. Something about the action must have scared River. He cursed and rocked backward, but he still wouldn’t come down.

“Come down,” Connor pleaded. “You’re scaring me.”

“You think you gotta save me? Huh?” River threw his arms wide again, more alcohol sloshing over the top of the bottle. “I don’t need saving.”

“I want you to come down.” Connor tried for calm. What was he doing? He should have called the cops immediately when he spotted River. Or firefighters, negotiators? Or whoever the hell should’ve been here. He’d seen things like this on the television, the mediator knowing all the right things to say and do, standing by River and connecting him to his family or childhood or his faith. All Connor knew was that he needed to pull River down, use the only thing he had going for him; the fact that he was bigger and stronger. 

“I like it up here!” River explained with another wide gesture. He wobbled a little but righted himself immediately.

“Come down, Riv.”

“Saint Connor tries to save everyone,” River shouted, ending with a hysterical laugh. He was clearly losing control of himself, and even if Connor did have the words to talk him down, he thought maybe he’d just yank River back onto the concrete roof of the building and worry about injuries later.

But River wasn’t finished. “Even if they don’t need saving!” 

“River!”

“Who the hell cares if I can balance, huh?”

“I care,” Connor shouted back. This was so out of character. 

“Yeah, right, telling me what Christmas and family is like for you, making me see it in my head, and then leaving me here alone.”

“River, please.” Connor tugged him, but River wouldn’t move back. 

“Leaving me here, alone, because that’s all anyone ever does. They fuck off, leave me, and what happens when college is over, huh? What happens when I lose that?” He lifted one clenched fist to the sky. “Fuck you!”

Connor had never heard River curse like this, and he was done with holding on to him. So evaluating where they would end up if they fell backward and not caring how much it hurt, he yanked, hard. River tumbled with him, arms flailing and the vodka bottle slipping from his grasp and falling into the tub of snow-covered plants on the roof patio. The two of them fell onto the roof, Connor using his body to cushion River’s descent, getting his arms full of an icy cold man, the breath forced from his lungs when they hit the ground.

Connor enveloped him in his arms and locked his hands in place, fighting a frozen, wet, drunk River. He wouldn’t get free. Connor had his pappa’s height, a rancher’s build, and he was a solid anchor in the wind and snow. There was no point in River fighting, and somehow he must have realized he couldn’t get free and went still in Connor’s arms. 

All Connor could think was that he’d wanted River back in his arms for a long time now, but he’d expected soft lighting and mood music, not driving winds and snow.

“What the hell are you doing?” Connor demanded. 

“Let me the fuck go.”

“Jesus, are you trying to kill yourself?”

River attempted to wriggle free. Connor’s grip didn’t falter in his hold. With his arms securely around River, he shuffled them back so they were protected by the low wall. He wanted to get them back inside, but he wasn’t ready to let River go yet, and the door was at least ten feet away.

What if River wriggled free and ran for the ledge? The idea of River on the ground, twisted in death, blood… Connor didn’t want to think about it. He opened his coat, one-handed, and then pulled River closer, trying to get as much of the material to go over him, attempting to keep them both warm. River’s skin was like ice. How long had he been standing up there? 

“What were you doing?” he demanded, but River didn’t reply, only burrowed deeper into Connor’s hold. This was stupid. He needed to get them off the roof, or he needed help. His phone was in the car. The campus was emptying for Christmas. It was ten a.m., snowing. What the hell was he going to do now? 

“I have no one,” River muttered, then laughed and buried his face deeper.

“What do you mean? Talk to me, River.”

“No.”

“We need to get inside.” 

How the hell do I get River inside?

He imagined struggling with River’s weight, trying to get him down four flights of stairs and across to his room. Maybe if he could just get him to the car, with its heated seats and the warm air blower and the coffee in a flask that Connor had made for the start of his journey back to Dallas. Then he could call someone, the cops or a doctor? That seemed like a plan, a focus.

He scrambled to his feet, bringing River with him, and stumbled inside. As soon as the door shut, warmth hit them, prickling at his exposed skin, and he moved toward the radiator, still gripping River’s belt. He let go of him long enough to remove his jacket and place it around the shivering man’s shoulders. 

River buried himself in the coat, and Connor went into disaster assessment mode. He’d seen hypothermia back home at the D, and it wasn’t pretty. He remembered his pappa saying there were signs to look for, and when Jack spoke, Connor always listened. He pulled up the facts he could remember.

Did River have hypothermia? His teeth weren’t chattering, and he wasn’t talking at all, so it wasn’t obvious if he was slurring. Then, even if he did talk and his speech was slurry, how could Connor tell how much vodka he’d drunk? Connor tried to remember the symptoms. The college hospital wasn’t far away. He could drive there, and they would help. 

Why the hell did I leave my phone in the damned car?

“It’s okay. I’m okay.”

“No, you’re not.”

“You can go,” River said dully. He wriggled closer to the radiator. 

“I’m not going anywhere.”

“But you are,” River murmured. “You kissed me, you got me off, and now you’re leaving today.” Then he hid his face in his hands. “Shit, shit, shit.”

Wait. Was this about what happened at the Thanksgiving party? 

Is this my fault?

Connor didn’t usually drink that much, but he’d had one beer too many at the party, to the point where he had all the courage he needed to wait for River to come out of the bathroom.

“Can I kiss you?” he’d asked, and River had stared at him, stone-cold sober and narrow-eyed. 

But then, holy shit, River had pushed him back into the nearest bedroom, shut the door, and the kiss had turned into something more, hands tangled in hair, the two of them kissing and rutting against each other until they were coming in their jeans. Really unromantic.

Nothing more than getting off, and River had left before Connor could even get his breath back. Not the best of outcomes. Then River had ignored him. Not returning texts, no more study sessions in the library, and he’d even missed the last lecture of the semester.

All of that told Connor on thing: River wasn’t interested in anything more with him. But that didn’t mean they weren’t still friends. They sat in silence for a few minutes, River’s face still buried in his hands, and he was clearly crying. 

What the hell should I do now? 

Texas Series

Book #1 – The Heart of Texas – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #2 – Texas Winter – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #3 – Texas Heat – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #4 – Texas Family – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #5 – Texas Christmas – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #6 – Texas Fall – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #7 – Texas Wedding – Amazon US | Amazon UK

Book #8 – Texas Gift – Amazon US | Amazon UK

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USA Today bestselling author RJ Scott writes stories with a heart of romance, a troubled road to reach happiness, and most importantly, a happily ever after.

RJ Scott is the author of over one hundred romance books, writing emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the men who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn’t with family either reading or writing.

The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn’t like it one little bit, and she 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 links below:

Email RJ rj@rjscott.co.uk | Facebook | Twitter | BookBub | Instagram | Pinterest

 


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Jocelynn & Rinda open this new series with a cracking good read

Something About Jace (Pineapple Grove #1)Something About Jace by Jocelynn Drake & Rinda Elliott
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

From the minute he almost stole the show as a guest star in Dominic and Abe’s book Sadistic Sherlock, I’ve been hoping we’d get Trent’s book.

Jocelynn and Rinda use it to kick off their new Pineapple Cove series set in sunny Florida and it’s a great introduction with a new set of characters to fall in love with.

They even manage to add in a bit of suspense with a secondary subplot involving art vandalism which ties in with Trent’s love interest Jace’s sister.

And speaking of Jace, he was a sweetheart and just the right person to spark Trent’s interest and to allow the global superstar movie actor the freedom to be himself.

The tension in this is all relatively low key, concentrating on the relationship and the impact on Trent’s career when he comes out as bisexual. It was handled with ease by these two talented authors and felt organic and not there just for the plot.

The sex is, as expected with these two, volcanic. I’m sure they deliberately seek ways in which they can get us dedicated fans of theirs to shout out loud in joy!

This book is no exception and the chair and mirror combo in this one rocketed to the top of the list of seriously sexy times!

I’ve five starred this one, as I have most of their books, because it was a read in one go and I finished it at 3am this morning and loved every bit of it 🙂

#ARC kindly received from the authors in return for an honest and unbiased review.

View all my reviews

Release Blitz: Operation Toy Rescue by Sarah Hadley Brook

Operation Toy Rescue | Sarah Hadley Brook

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | JMS Books

Length: 29,000 words approx.

Publisher: JMS Books

Blurb

When Jules Evergreen lands in trouble at the North Pole and gets shipped off to Snow Hope Island for ninety days, he never expects to take up the cause of the forgotten toys waiting for new homes. Falling for his new boss is not on the agenda either, but his heart has other ideas.

Felix Winterson has grown up on Snow Hope Island and now runs the place. He isn’t thrilled when party boy Jules arrives, and Felix tries hard to ignore the man’s charms. He has other problems, anyway. For years he’s tried to get Santa to look at the growing inventory of damaged toys in the warehouse, to no avail.

When Jules comes up with a plan to save the toys, the men find themselves working closely together. As Christmas Eve looms, there’s a lot at stake. Can they save Snow Hope, convince Santa to rescue the toys, and fall in love all at the same time?

Excerpt

He was surprised that no one else was in the building yet. Unless they were upstairs in the loft, or locked away in an office. He thought he’d seen Eve’s coat hanging from a peg up front.

Jules opened the laptop and logged in, ready to get started. He really wanted to take that trip to the warehouse with Felix and the quicker he finished logging things in, the quicker that could happen.

As he carefully opened a rather large box, he heard a door open and turned to see Felix, Eve, and Zuzu hurry out of Felix’s office. All wore a look of panic and his heart jumped.

“What’s wrong?” he asked as Eve grew closer.

“The Big Guy is coming for a visit three days before Christmas! We just found out. He never does this. Never, Jules.” Her voice rose as she spilled the news.

Jules glanced at Felix and caught his eye, holding it for a moment. “Isn’t Santa coming a good thing?” he asked, confused.

“We don’t know. He never does this. Never,” Eve reiterated.

“She’s right. He doesn’t. What if he wants to make major changes? Or move us to the North Pole?” Felix asked.

Jules crinkled his brow. In his mind, moving to the North Pole would be great. Felix would be closer to Jules. “You don’t want to live at the North Pole?”

All three of them looked at him in shock, their mouths gaping open.

“What?” he asked.

“The North Pole is headquarters. It’s chaos,” Zuzu explained.

Okay, I’ll give them that. But there were good things, too.

“But you’d be closer to …” he flicked his gaze to Felix and felt his cheeks heat up. “The main operation,” he finished lamely.

“But we like it here. Our island is beautiful and we’re like a family. What if we’re torn apart?”

“I don’t think Santa —

“You don’t know, Jules,” Eve broke in. “Maybe he thinks we don’t do enough to help these toys.”

Felix was vigorously nodding his agreement, so Jules shut his mouth and sat down in front of his laptop, considering the possibilities. He finally glanced back up, his lips curving up into a small smile as he eyed all three. “Then I guess there’s only one thing to do, guys. We need to show Santa how important the island is to children all over the globe.”

“How do we do that?” Eve asked quietly, her brow furrowed.

“By developing a kick-ass plan to get these ‘inadequate toys’ into the hands of kids,” he explained, using air quotes. It was really just expanding what he and Felix had talked about last night. But calling it a plan made it feel more real. More promising.

Again, they gaped at him. Well, all but Felix. He was grinning. Happiness filled Jules’s chest and his heart raced as he grinned back, warmth spreading through him. Their gazes held and Jules felt like Felix was peering inside of him. Like he was seeing the real Jules. Not the guy that always screwed up. Not the guy that only thought of himself. But the one that finally — finally — wanted to do something worthy. Something that would bring others joy.

“Jules is right. We need to work together to show Santa we can handle the responsibility of taking care of the toys on this island. To prepare them for new homes. To convince him to take them with him on Christmas Eve.” Felix straightened his shoulders as determination flitted across his face and hope flashed in his eyes.

Jules couldn’t look away. The man was beautiful in every way.

About The Author

Sarah Hadley Brook lives smack-dab in the middle of the Heartland and is the mother of two wonderful young men, as well as two cats. During the day, she works in the nonprofit world, but reserves evenings for her hobby-turned-passion of writing, letting the characters she conjures in her mind take the lead and show her where the story will go.

When not working or writing, she can be found reading, working on dollhouses, trying her hand at new recipes, or watching old movies and musicals. In her ideal world, Christmas would come at least twice a year, Rock Hudson and Doris Day would have co-starred in more than three movies, and chocolate would be a daily necessity.

She dreams of traveling to Scotland some day and visiting the places her ancestors lived. Sarah believes in “Happily Ever After” and strives to ensure her characters find their own happiness in love and life.

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