Tag Archives: mystery

Cover Reveal: Prince Of Killers by Layla Reyne

Prince of Killers | Layla Reyne

Fog City #1

Prince of Killers Ebook

Cover Design: Cate Ashwood Designs

Cover Photography: Wander Aguiar Photography

Release Date (Ebook & Print): June 10, 2019

Add to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/45178448-prince-of-killers

Blurb

No indiscriminate killing. No collateral damage. No unvetted targets.

These are the rules Hawes Madigan lives by. Rules that make being Fog City’s Prince of Killers bearable. Soon, he’ll be king—of an organization of assassins—and the crown has never felt heavier. Until the mysterious Dante Perry swaggers into his life.

Dante looks like a rock god and carries himself like one too, all loose-limbed and casually confident. He also carries a concealed weapon, a private investigator’s license, and a message for the prince. Someone inside Hawes’s organization is out to kill the future king.

In the chaos that follows the timely warning, Hawes comes to depend on Dante. On his skills as an investigator, on the steadiness he offers, and on their moments alone when Hawes lets Dante take control. As alliances are tested and traitors exposed, Hawes needs Dante at his back and in his bed. But if the PI ever learns Hawes’s darkest secret, Hawes is sure to get a knife to the heart—and a bullet to the brain—instead.

There’s no shortage of twists and turns in this new romantic suspense trilogy from Layla Reyne. Prince of Killers is book one of three.

Fair warning: buckle up, cliffhangers ahead!

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Excerpt

“How do I trust you won’t kill me in my sleep?” Hawes sniped, more out of sexual frustration than any real fear. He felt more like himself than he had all night. Steady again.

“Same way I’m going to have to trust you not to kill me. You are the Prince of Killers, aren’t you?”

Hawes bit his tongue, fighting the words that wanted to form. Twice in one night. Hawes’s hate for the title crested once more. Hate that he was the prince when it was actually the three of them—him, Holt, and Helena—running the organization. Hate that he’d been forced into the role because he was the oldest, technically, and hate that when someone had to make the tough decisions, it was always him. He’d been the prince since he was sixteen and had given the doctors permission to turn off his parents’ ventilators when neither his grandparents, who were absent at the time, nor his siblings could make the call.

Cold as ice, the stories went.

He hated the killer part just as much. It implied malice, evilness, and cruelty when Hawes had strived to take those variables out of the equation. He knew what he was, what his family did, but there was a place for them, a need for assassins in a world where people didn’t play by the rules and legal justice missed its mark. He’d felt like a killer only twice in his life—that morning in the hospital when he’d become the prince, and that night three years ago when he’d spilled an innocent woman’s blood. A day that had somehow brought into his life the man now stretched out on his couch. And Hawes needed him to think he was the Prince of Killers, for both their sakes.

For now.

Layla Reyne - Author Photo

About the Author

Layla Reyne was raised in North Carolina and now calls San Francisco home.

She enjoys weaving her bi-coastal experiences into her stories, along with adrenaline-fueled suspense and heart-pounding romance.

When she’s not writing stories to excite her readers, she downloads too many books, watches too much television, and cooks too much food with her scientist husband, much to the delight of their smushed-face, leftover-loving dogs.

She is a 2019 RWA® RITA® Finalist in Contemporary Romance (Mid-Length) and was a 2016 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist in Romantic Suspense.

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Back to England’s past with the dashing Earl

Copy of Anthony-Earl-of-Crofton-Nook
Anthony, Earl of Crofton
by Rebecca Cohen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’m really glad Rebecca decided to head back into England’s past and revisit the dashing Earl of Crofton and his brother-in-law, the great actor Sebastian Hewell.

This book acts as both a new chapter to the original trilogy but also as a bit of a prequel to the contemporary romance starring Anthony’s ancestor Ben, 16th Earl.

While the mystery spy element of this one didn’t capture my attention as much as those of the first three, it was still great to see Anthony and Sebastian as much in love as before and tearing up the Stuart Court.

Can’t wait to find out more about the next Earl, William’s son James.

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

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Book Blitz: Submitting to the Cowboy by BJ Wane

Submitting to the Cowboy | BJ Wane

Cowboy Doms #3

Publication date: April 12th 2019

Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Tamara Barton had lusted after Connor Dunbar ever since she was old enough to know what those stirrings meant whenever he was near.

Connor’s refusal to see her as anything but the young girl he’d befriended and protected for years soon drives them apart, but not before she catches an up-close, personal glimpse of him exerting the dominant control she’d heard rumors about.

Connor regretted the harsh words he’d spoken to Tamara when he caught her spying on him as much as his lustful response to the look of need reflected on her face.

He’d been looking after the neighbor girl since the moment he saw her falling off her first horse at the age of ten and didn’t plan on stopping now that she was a grown woman who thought she wanted their relationship to go in a different direction.

He knew his sexual proclivities were not for the young, sweet kid he was so fond of, and wouldn’t jeopardize their special bond by giving in to her desires.

But Tamara always had a way of getting what she wanted and when he saw she was serious about becoming a member of the private BDSM club he owned with his brother and best friend, Connor discovered he didn’t want her submitting to anyone but him.

When he learns she’d kept things from him that could have impacted her welfare, would he allow his failure to protect her to drive another wedge between them or finally embrace a life with her at his side as more than just a cherished friend?

This is book three in the Cowboy Doms series but reads as a standalone.

Publisher’s Note: This contemporary western romance contains elements of mystery, suspense, adult themes, power exchange and sensual scenes. If any of these offend you, please do not purchase.

Goodreads / Amazon

Author Bio:

I live in the Midwest with my husband and our dog, a lovable Great Pyrenees/Standard Poodle. I love dogs, enjoy spending time with my daughter, babysitting dogs and kids, reading and working puzzles. We have traveled extensively throughout the states, Canada and just once overseas, but I now prefer being a homebody. I worked for a while writing articles for a local magazine but soon found my interest in writing for myself peaking. My first book was strictly spanking erotica, but I slowly evolved to writing erotic spanking romance with a touch of suspense. My favorite genre to read is suspense.

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Release Blitz: Ace In The Picture by Jude Tresswell

Ace In The Picture | Jude Tresswell

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Publisher: Rowanvale Books

Cover Artist: Billie Hastie

Heat Rating: 2 flames

Length: 63,000 words/ 251 pages (paperback format)

It can be read as a standalone but is also the third book featuring the County Durham quad

Release Date: March 31, 2019

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Buy Links

Rowanvale Books

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Waterstones (UK) | Barnes and Noble

ACE IN THE PICTURE BLURB copy.jpg

Blurb

Polyamory and asexuality meet in this third tale about a north-east England quad.

The police suspect Raith Balan of faking a painting. So do money-launderers who sink profits into art. Mike, Ross and Phil, the three men in Raith’s life, must prove his innocence. They’re hampered by their certainty that a member of the Fraud Squad is corrupt.

The senior investigating officer is Detective Sergeant Nick Seabrooke. He knows he is asexual but is he aromantic too?

As Raith’s lovers struggle to keep Raith safe and find the fraudster, the sergeant struggles to understand why the quad is often in his thoughts.

Excerpt

Chapter 1

Raith stood in the kitchen in front of the calendar. His gaze shifted from the naked figure depicted on ‘October’ to the highlighted ‘Thursday 12th’ and back again. He pressed a fingertip to his lips, transferred a kiss to the mid-point of the figure’s shoulder blades and ran his finger down the spine—Mike Angells’ spine.

The real-life Mike walked into the room and filled the kettle.

“What are you admirin’?” he asked. “The model or the artist?”

Raith was the artist. “The artist,” he replied. “He’s classy. The model’s okay, I suppose.”

“Cheeky!” Mike admonished.

Changing the subject, Raith asked, “You know what day it is in two days’ time, don’t you?”

“In two days? Well, let’s see… difficult one… It must be Thursday. Aye, that’s right. It was Monday yesterday, so—”

“Stop teasing me! Do you think he’s forgotten?”

‘He’ was Phil Roberts, the man Raith had married 364 days earlier.

“Don’t be daft. Of course not. You know Phil. His middle name’s ‘No fuss’.”

“That’s two names.”

“And that’s two cups of coffee. One for you. One for me,” said Mike, handing over a mug.

“None for me?” asked a third man who, yawning, had entered the kitchen. He hugged the two men already there.

“Sorry, Ross,” Mike apologised. “I didn’t make you one. I thought you were still asleep.”

“No. Just dozy,” said Ross sleepily. “I heard Phil’s car. Is it an emergency, Raith?”

“Not exactly,” Raith replied. “He went in early to cover for a colleague.”

Phil had helped to pioneer a form of rectal surgery that used nanocarbon patches to reconstruct torn tissue. He was a respected consultant at the hospital an hour’s drive away in Warbridge, County Durham.

“I’d better get sorted and get out myself,” said Ross. He was, amongst other things, a gallery proprietor in Gateshead, and his journey to work took longer than Phil’s. He yawned again.

“Are you feelin’ okay?” asked Mike, alert to Ross’s tone of voice. “It’s not like you to sound so unenthusiastic about work.” In fact, it wasn’t like Ross to sound unenthusiastic about anything. He was always lively—he personified keenness.

“I’m dead tired cos I didn’t sleep well. I had a strange text late on. You were already asleep. I don’t think you heard the phone buzz. Strange. Unsettling.”

“Oh?”

“How do you mean?” asked Raith. “We’re not going to get involved with more criminal activities, are we? I had enough of crime fighting last time!”

Even though Mike was no longer a detective with the Tees, Tyne and Wear Constabulary, the four of them were involved in a surprising amount of crime fighting. ‘Last time’ had involved an illegal immigrant, and the tensions that had arisen had threatened the survival of the quad.

That’s what they were: a gay, polyamorous quad. They lived in Tunhead, a hamlet in Weardale in the Durham hills. Once, Tunhead had rung to the sound of workers’ hammers hitting stone. In a way it still did: Ross had turned it into an arts centre full of smiths, sculptors and potters who wanted to escape the North East’s towns.

“Well, we’re not, are we?” Raith repeated.

“No.”

“Good. Well, my creations won’t create themselves. I’d better get off, too.”

In Raith’s case, ‘getting off’ simply meant walking twenty yards to his studio, a converted storehouse.

“You sure he hasn’t forgotten?” he asked Mike again before he left.

“I’m sure.”

“Okay then.”

“What’s that about?” asked Ross after Raith was gone.

“He’s bothered that Phil’s forgotten their anniversary.”

“He hasn’t.”

“I know he hasn’t. He’s takin’ him off on a trip sumwhere—but you know Raith. He needs everythin’ crystal clear and written in capital letters. And sumtimes, so do I. What was this message about?”

Ross pulled a face and explained. When he’d done so, Mike could understand his concern.

“He wouldn’t be so stupid, Ross… Would he?”

“Not stupid, Mike, but he’s gullible. He doesn’t always think. I just don’t know.”

***

The message stayed in Ross’s mind during the forty-mile drive to the gallery and he couldn’t forget about it once he was there. Some of Raith’s paintings hung on the gallery walls. They were mainly of Weardale’s waterfalls. After heavy rain, the falls transformed from gentle trickles into rushing, gushing powerful forces of nature that the four men knew could kill. They’d seen them kill.

Raith loved to paint the waterfalls. From a distance, his torrents looked alive. The effect was linked to his use of colour. Raith was a tetrachromat; he could see a host of hues in what, to most people, was a single shade. He painted for himself, though, not for fame or money—he had plenty of both, due to his skill with clay not brushes. Several of his wares were on show at the gallery, most tagged ‘sold’ with a price that would feed and clothe all four men for a long, long time. His sensually erotic sculptures, modelled on Mike and Phil, were always in demand and beautifully, lovingly executed. But today, Ross gave Raith’s erotica a miss. He stared, instead, at the waterfalls.

What might induce Raith to produce a piece of work “with intent to deceive”, as the legal phrase was?

That was what the worrying message had suggested. That Raith’s were the hands and eyes behind a painting that the police were interested in. They thought it was a fake. For the umpteenth time, Ross asked himself why?

Raith didn’t need fame and he didn’t need fortune, but did he need the challenge of outwitting the experts? Of copying another artist’s work so accurately that no one would notice the difference?

Surely not. Momentarily, Ross’s dark mood lifted. The only challenge Raith was likely to rise to was the one of finding ways to spice up the quad’s evening meals. Two nights ago, he’d ‘accidentally’ stumbled near the saucepan with a teaspoon of chilli flakes in his hand.

“Oh, look! They’ve fallen in,” he’d said apologetically.

Ross smiled when he thought about it, but anxiety soon returned. Could Raith be feeling resentment? Sometimes, that was the driving force behind a fraud. Failed artists whose work had been refused once too often. Failed artists who took I’ll show them! literally.

No. All Raith’s resentments were little ones that quickly blew over—feeling nagged for not doing his turn on the house-keeping rota, being yelled at for leaving clay-covered dirty washing on top of the pile of clean laundry. Raith took umbrage easily, but he’d be smiling again within the hour. And anyway, he wasn’t a failed artist. He was a very successful one.

He was a strange mixture though. That complexity was part of his attraction. It was part of what made him Raith. His skill was undeniable, but his mental health was fragile— ‘bloody unhinged’ was how Mike would describe Raith in less charitable moments. He could be unpredictable. He could be very violent. He had another side, though, and it was what Mike and Phil and Ross adored about him. Canny, clued up, an ex-con hard as nails… but at the toss of a coin, as loving, as sweet and as trusting as anyone they had ever met. Mike was as loving, and often as sweet, but trusting? No. Mike was ex-CID. It wasn’t in his nature to be trusting.

Which was why Mike was already making phone calls.

About the Author

I’m not Nick Seabrooke, the ace in the picture, but there are some firsthand truths peeping through the fiction.

Like Nick, I’m ace and happy with it, but also, like Nick, I’m wavery on that ro/aro line–and that can cause some soul-searching. If the picture painted in the story is a very narrow one, it’s because I didn’t want to stray too far from what I know. The quad, however, is totally imaginary.

I blog at https://polyallsorts.wordpress.com . There are posts about asexuality, polyamory, beer, tattoos, book covers, and many other story-related items.

There are photos of the Durham countryside, the setting of the stories, too. I’m always happy to receive and respond to comments. Well, if they’re friendly ones!

Author Link

Blog/Website

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Retro Review Tour: On Hands and Knees by Sai Fox

On Hands and Knees | Sai Fox

The Valentino Family

Cover Artist: Samantha Garrett

Release Date: June 1, 2018

Genre/s: Mystery, Thriller, BDSM

Heat Rating: 5 flames

Length: 40,000 words/ 226 pages

Buy Links:

Available on Kindle Unlimited

Amazon US | Amazon UK

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Blurb

Valentino blood runs black.

Nicolai Valentino is the almost perfect heir to the Valentino Family—impeccably dressed, devilishly handsome, impossibly cold, and absolutely dedicated to a family that scorns his very existence.

Born to the infamous Boss and a Japanese woman of no consequence, Nico must fight for respect in a blood-thirsty world that would be much happier to see him with a hole in his head.

Blood runs thick in the Valentino Family. To them, Nico’s little better than water.

Gabriel Delatto is Nico’s right-hand man, his childhood friend, and under the darkness of their ruby red sheets, his lover. But more than that, Gabriel holds the secret to unlocking who Nico really is—the true Nico, not the mask beginning to crack around the edges.

But there is a pleasure in that pain, he knows. There is only ever pleasure when it comes to Nico, even if it comes from the crack of a whip or on the edge of a blade.

But there’s someone lurking in the darkness, something that neither Nico nor Gabriel truly understand. But there is one thing they do know—

It isn’t afraid to bite.

RETRO REVIEW TOUR SCHEDULE

About the Author

Sai Fox was born and raised in New York City, so it doesn’t come as much of a surprise that there’s an ever-present coffee cup on her desk as she writes well into the night. A chronic insomniac, some of her best ideas come to her right before heading off to bed.

Currently residing in Tokyo, Sai finds most of her time spent writing, reading, and wandering the strange and intoxicating streets that tell thousands of stories… with a cup of coffee. There is always a cup of coffee.

Sai has been writing fiction for well over a decade, enjoying the ability to push boundaries of society and sexuality through her work.

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Review Tour: Honeythorn by Marina Vivancos

Honeythorn | Marina Vivancos

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Buy Links:

Amazon US | Amazon UK

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Length: 58,000 words approx.

Cover Design: Natasha Snow

READ MY REVIEW

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Blurb

Omega Milan Pryor knows his duty. He must travel North through the continent towards the snow, the cold, and his new betrothed.

They say that Lord Alpha Raphael Ledford, the man he is to marry, is as artic as the weather of his land. But Milan has always been an optimist. Perhaps he might find friendship in the arranged marriage. Even love.

It doesn’t take long for Milan to realize that all the rumours about Lord Raphael are true. Reclusive, distant, frigid. Milan finds himself unwelcome in what he must now call his new home. He’s used to fighting for what he wants—but can he survive a husband as cruel as Lord Raphael?

Being bonded to one who rejects you is a painful thing. Will Milan be able to win his husband’s regard?

What terrible secret is Lord Raphael keeping, and will Milan be able to discover it before it’s too late?

Or will Milan perish along with his heart?

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About the Author

When Marina was a child she couldn’t sleep. Night after dissolving night she just couldn’t sleep. Nothing much worked – until she started making up stories in her head. Suddenly, the transition into unconsciousness was a smooth dive into calm waters.

Marina is currently in a period of sleepless upheaval, and she hopes writing down the stories in her head will cast the same spell it did decades ago.

Marina hopes to write in a variety of romance sub-genres, from contemporary to supernatural to sci-fi. Her style, however, tends to focus on character-centred stories that explore different facets of the human experience, such as mental health.

She also enjoys writing explicit, drawn-out sex scenes, so expect those to be a prominent feature of her stories.

Marina tends to keep to herself unless prompted, so don’t be shy in approaching her!

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This paranormal shifter series is stunningly good

42282304Thrown to the Wolves by Charlie Adhara

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

That’s three out of three 5* reads for this stunningly good series from Charlie Adhara.

As with book two, the whodunit element had me guessing right to the end and I was jumping at red herrings all the way through.

I adore it when an author can keep me on my toes like that.

This one’s even more deeply focused on Cooper and Park’s relationship as well and by the end of the story I really was squee-ing out loud as the declarations of love got uber serious.

The political allegory is still as strong in part three, fear of the unknown combining with greed and corruption to pull together disparate people into a plot which sees murder committed on Oliver’s home pack territory.

As ever, Cooper and Ollie fail to communicate almost as much as they rely on the other and my heart broke for the BSI agent so many times as Park’s relatives treated him poorly.

But, when the proverbial hit the deck, each was quick to recognise the true bond between the two men and there’s a great tension-filled encounter which had me fist pumping.

Book four is going to be a doozy from the hints dropped in this one and I can’t wait. Sadly no word on when!

#ARC kindly provided by the publishers Carina Press via NetGalley in return for an honest and unbiased review.

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