Tag Archives: roommates

Release Blitz: Wheels Down by Beth Bolden

Wheels Down | Beth Bolden

Food Truck Warriors #5

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Release Date: September 30th, 2021

Cover Artist: Cate Ashwood Designs

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length: 76,000 words

Available in Kindle Unlimited

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Blurb

Shaw isn’t his friend—until Ross discovers he’s so much more.

Ross Stanton is having a bad week—a bad month—really, a bad year. But the last thing he wants, after the betrayal of his friend and business partner, is for anyone else to know just how much he’s fighting for survival.

He’s struggling to keep his food truck and to maintain appearances, but what Ross doesn’t realize is that Shaw Finley, the bartender from the Funky Cup, has seen right through his charade.

Shaw offers the couch in his apartment over the bar, suggesting that saving money on rent might help salvage Ross’ failing prospects.

Even though he doesn’t really consider them friends, Ross discovers that Shaw is great to talk to, easy to look at, and he likes him. Late nights and lazy mornings and evenings with only the polished wood of the bar between them lead to an attraction that Ross can’t deny—and that Shaw doesn’t even try to.

But falling in love isn’t as easy as falling into bed together, and Ross isn’t even sure what he feels is love, until he figures out that it couldn’t possibly be anything else.

This isn’t a standalone story and should be read after the first four books in the Food Truck Warriors series.

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Excerpt

Shaw removed his glass, replaced it with a full cup of water and ice, and then a moment later he was back, with a plate full of delicious-smelling food.

“Steak and mushroom hoagie, with horseradish aioli,” Shaw said, depositing it in front of him, “and our famous sweet potato fries.”

“They’re famous?” Ross wondered, even as he realized he had heard people talking about them.

“According to our Yelp reviews,” Shaw said. “Can I grab you anything else?”

Ross was about to ask for napkins, because the sandwich looked absolutely delicious but also messy, but then one appeared next to him, like Shaw had known he’d need it.

“I think I’m good, thanks,” Ross said, and picked up the sandwich. It had a surprising heft to it, and he had to give Jackson and Shaw credit—they’d revamped the kitchen and the work they’d put in showed. When he took a bite, he was even more impressed, half a dozen flavors exploding across his tongue as he chewed spiced sliced steak working in perfect complement to the earthiness of the mushrooms.

“You’re nodding over there,” Shaw said, his voice teasing. “Is that a good or a bad thing?”

Ross finished chewing and swallowed. “Really good,” he said. “I’m impressed.”

“Wow,” Shaw said, looking surprised. Too surprised.

“Am I really that notorious?” Ross asked, before he thought better of it. He ate a handful of sweet potato fries and they were really good too. “That picky?”

He didn’t really want to hear the answer; he really didn’t want to hear Shaw’s answer.

“Not exactly notorious,” Shaw said, returning to slicing his lemons.

“Then what exactly?”

Shaw sighed and put down the knife.

“You’re gonna get me in trouble,” he said with resignation.

“I am?”

Ross almost told him to forget it. After all, hearing the truth was probably not going to be all that enlightening and might actually make the next few months of living together uncomfortable.

Shaw smiled then, and it wasn’t the same smile he gave to all the random guys at the bar. It was softer, sweeter, more genuine somehow. Ross had never seen it before, and it hit him somewhere deep, a place where he hadn’t felt much of anything in years.

Maybe the last time had been when his grandmother had smiled at him, over pots and pans and pie dishes.

“You gotta know that you’ve got the best food at that whole lot,” Shaw said. “Objectively. The other food there is good, don’t get me wrong, but those guys? You know why they keep you at arm’s length? They’re all terrified of you, though they’d rather die than admit it. You’re brilliant. You should be working in the best, the fanciest, the most expensive restaurants, and instead you’ve got this food truck and it’s just amazing. Every time I go to Basket, I’m blown away.”

“And,” Shaw continued, leaning over, his blue eyes twinkling again, and Ross’ breath caught in his throat, “you’re gonna get me in trouble, because Jackson would have my ass for not thinking Alexis serves the best food on the lot.”

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About the Author

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A lifelong Pacific Northwester, Beth Bolden has just recently moved to North Carolina with her supportive husband. Beth still believes in Keeping Portland Weird, and intends to be just as weird in Raleigh.

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 twenty-three novels and seven novellas.

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Best one yet and a truly beautiful romance

58943601._SY475_Wheels Down by Beth Bolden

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

As ever, I beta read this for Beth but this is probably the entry that I had the smallest amount of commentary on because this is, hands down, my favourite in all the Food Truck Warriors series (so far! Ren is up next so who knows 😁 )

Most of that is down to both Shaw and Ross being so utterly perfect for each other.

Shaw is everything you’d ever want to have not only in a book boyfriend, but as a friend too. He’s kindness personified, he listens without judgement, and he’s sexy as Hell!

Ross though, my poor broken Ross.

Oh he needed someone to see him, to really see him, and then to hold a mirror in front of him which showed what a wonderful person he truly is, not the shattered soul he’s been left after so much betrayal.

I LOVE these two individually but as a pair they own my heart. Their friendship is wonderful, but when things move between the sheets, well they light up like a bonfire on July 4th!

It’s wonderful to see how Ross’ begins to get his confidence and his confusion over his feelings for Shaw are so sweet, it’s clear Ross knows what he feels is more than friendship, but he’s not had the experience to be able to put a name to what it is.

Until the moment he realises it’s love and then I just got all swoony 😁😍

It was also lovely to see the rest of the Food Truck gang go out of their way to try and include Ross more, even Tony, as they realised he’d been as much a victim of his insane former partner’s actions as Ash was – (see Full Speed Ahead for details of that!

Also Ren in this book is fabulous and I can not wait now for his book which will, if all goes as expected, finally wrap up this brilliant series from Beth.

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

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Release Blitz: Tapped By My Roommate by DJ Jamison

Tapped By My Roommate | DJ Jamison

Thrust Into Love #3

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Release Date: September 9th, 2021

Cover Artist: Cate Ashwood

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length: 75,000 words

Available in Kindle Unlimited

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COVER

Blurb

Ethan Greene: Shy geek, newly bi-curious, and…propositioning his gay roommate?

I have a passion for a lot of things: wildlife biology, Godzilla, bowties…

But when it comes to people, I’m more timid.

Which is why I’m stuck with a toxic ex-girlfriend who’s holding my lizard hostage.

I need to face her–and save my dignity.

But a little backup won’t hurt, right?

My roommate is the perfect wingman.

Rhett is assertive and charismatic. The kind of guy people respect.

And when he meets my toxic ex, he’s also the kind of guy to get protective.

I take comfort in his strength, even as I envy it.

But when he kisses me, things get awkward.

Frustrated by the tension between us, I turn to a hookup app for answers.

I don’t mean to proposition my roommate. Really.

It’s just a weird fluke–a mortifying one.

But Rhett has a proposition of his own.

He wants to help me explore my curiosity.

But he’s a bartender who practically flirts for a living, and I’m in way over my head.

It could all end in heartbreak.

Unless I find the courage I’ve been seeking my whole life.

Can I be bold enough to ask Rhett Hayes to be mine?

Tapped By My Roommate is Book 3 of the Thrust into Love series featuring a flirty bartender, a timid but passionate geek, and a mistaken app hookup that encourages these two roommates to explore friendship and love. It can be read as a standalone.

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Excerpt

RHETT

I took a seat by him on the futon, waiting while Linh shut the door behind her. Waiting while Ethan shifted nervously beside me.

He was blushing again.

“So, what’s up?” I prompted when he didn’t say anything.

He hesitated, biting down on his bottom lip, and my stomach clenched. His nerves were giving me nerves.

“If you’re not ready to—”

“I want it to be you,” he blurted. “The…sex stuff.”

My heart leapt. “Yeah? That’s great.”

“But I don’t want you to do it out of sympathy or obligation, because it was your kiss that made me so… And I don’t want this to be some weird thing where you’re protecting me from all the scary guys out there. I can’t do this if you don’t want it too. If you’re not…into me, then—”

“I’m into you.”

He looked thrown by my interruption. “You’re not just saying that?”

“Ethan, I’m into you. I liked kissing you. Both times.” My hand strayed to his knee and squeezed. “I wouldn’t mind kissing you again. Maybe in more places.”

“But you could be with anyone. What do you get out of it?”

“I get you.” Ethan frowned, and I didn’t want him to get the wrong idea. This wasn’t about love. “I’m burnt out on app hookups with strangers. It’s boring, you know? It has been for a while. I don’t have time for a real relationship, so I don’t date. But with us sharing an apartment…”

“It’s convenient,” he said.

I nodded. “Yeah, it is. But I don’t want you to think that’s the only reason. I like you. We’re friends. I think we could both have a lot of fun, as long as we’re careful and have clear expectations.”

“Right. That’s why I did this.” He picked up the notebook and shoved it at me. “I’m no good at talking about this kind of stuff. So, I wrote down some things. Because I know you’ll want to know. Explicit consent, right?”

“Okay…”

I released his knee to take the notebook and flipped it open to the first page, titled, “Roommate Hookup Policy.”

A set of rules followed, all in Ethan’s neat handwriting.

Rule 1: This is sex only. No emotional attachments.

Rule 2: Hookups will only happen when both parties want them to.

Rule 3: Hookups will only continue so long as both parties enjoy them.

Rule 4: Hookups will be exclusive and will stop immediately should either roommate meet a romantic prospect.

Rule 5: There will be no talking about hookups outside of hookups.

Rule 6: Hookups will end when list of bisexual experiences is complete (See Pg 2).

“You’ve thought this through,” I said. “But Rule 5…”

“Like I said, I’m no good at talking about this stuff. Besides, we should keep our friendship and this stuff separate, right? So boundaries are clear. We don’t need to talk about it when it’s not happening.”

“I guess, if that’s what you want,” I said dubiously. “But I don’t want to presume you want something without asking beforehand. Or assume you liked what happened between us without checking in afterward.”

“We can talk before and after. Just not, you know, at other times.”

I nodded. If this was a condition of being with Ethan, I’d make it work. He was nervous now. Maybe feeling a little shy. But with some time, he’d relax—and possibly his need for rules would too. In the meantime, it wasn’t a bad idea to maintain boundaries. Hooking up with someone you lived with was playing with fire—it just so happened that I thought it’d be good enough to risk a burn or two.

“Okay, we’ll play by your rules.”

“Okay, good. So, uh, there’s this too…” He took the notebook from me and flipped it to the next page. “I made a list of things I’d like to explore, so you won’t have to ask. Ignore the stuff in pink gel pen. That was Linh trying to make me more exciting. But honestly, this is about all the excitement I can handle right now.”

I glanced down. In black pen, in big, blocky letters, it said: Things Ethan Wants To Experience.

Below that was a checklist of sorts. A sexual checklist.

Ethan stood up and headed toward the hallway. I tore my gaze from the page. “Wait. Where are you going?”

“I can’t handle watching you read it. I’ve got to get to class. Just, uh, text me if you have any questions. That’s easier than talking, okay? And, um, if you agree, we can start… I guess whenever you want to.”

I took one more glance at the checklist, spotted kissing/making out at the top, and tossed the notebook down. Then I got up. “I’ll study this more carefully later.”

He swallowed. “Okay.”

I crossed the room, slowly. He watched me warily. When I got within range, I put my hands on his shoulders.

“What are you…”

His words trailed away as I pressed him against the wall. Slowly, so slowly—giving him all the time in the world to stop me—I stepped forward until my body pinned him in place. His breathing hitched. His heart hammered so hard I could feel it in my chest.

I tilted my head down, putting my lips close to his ear. “We’ll start now.”

“Uh, okay, but I—”

I traced the shell of his ear with my tongue, and he gasped.

“You like that?” I tugged at his ear lobe with my teeth.

He gave a muffled groan in response, his hands clenching tight on my sides. His body arched toward mine involuntarily, and I smiled. This was going to be hot as hell if he kept responding like that.

“I know you have to go to class,” I said. “This is just a taste of what’s coming.”

“God.”

I kissed along his jaw, closer and closer to his mouth. Slowly though, so slowly. Until Ethan gave a huff and turned his head, catching my lips with his in a desperate, wet kiss.

Heat flashed through me as his tongue swept out to meet mine. He grabbed my hair, threading those long, slender fingers through the strands, and pulled me tight. I let him kiss me as hard and as long as he wanted to, reveling in Ethan taking what he needed.

An idea started to form in my mind. One that would surely test my patience and his, but it felt right.

I would read Ethan’s list of sex acts—to make sure I didn’t overstep his boundaries—but we wouldn’t do any of them until Ethan found the courage to take what he wanted.

Just like today with the passionate kiss that he was very much leading.

When he bit my lip, making me groan deep in my chest, he broke the kiss. His eyes were wide, as if he couldn’t believe he’d done it.

“Sorry—”

“Don’t apologize. It was hot.”

“Really?”

“Touch me however you want. I’m not afraid of a few bites and bruises,” I said with a wink.

He blushed again, and I could sense our time for sexy talk was over. I vowed that by the end of this experiment, Ethan would want to hear my filthy words. That they’d make him hard for me. But for now, I had no plans to push him out of his comfort zone.

I stepped back. “I’ll let you get ready for class.”

“Class,” he echoed blankly.

I waited as he blinked twice, then seemed to snap back to awareness.

“Class,” he said, “Right. I should go.”

“Have a good day, Ethan.” I loaded my voice with innuendo. “I look forward to seeing you soon.”

About the Author

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DJ Jamison writes romances about everyday life and extraordinary love featuring a variety of queer characters, from gay to bisexual to asexual.

DJ grew up in the Midwest in a working-class family, and those influences can be found in her writing through characters coping with real-life problems: money troubles, workplace drama, family conflicts and, of course, falling in love.

DJ spent more than a decade in the newspaper industry before chasing her first dream to write fiction. She spent a lifetime reading before that and continues to avidly devour her fellow authors’ books each night. She lives in Kansas with her husband, two sons, one snake, and a sadistic cat named Birdie.

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