Blitz | It Started with a Dance by Tinia Montford

It Started with a Dance
Tinia Montford
(Pacific Grove University, #2)
Publication date: July 28th 2022
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, New Adult, Romance

WILL THEY PULL OFF THE PERFECT PERFORMANCE?

It’s double time for Cami Clinton…

Dance is in Cami’s blood, but a bombshell diagnosis puts her on the sidelines. Now returning for her senior year of college, she’s determined to prove she is the dancer she once was. Each year, at the end of the semester, the campus hosts a dance festival. Cami knows this is her shot at redemption, but while at a party, things go horribly wrong and Cami suddenly has a new boyfriend: Marsh Lincoln.

Marsh Lincoln has two left feet…

He doesn’t dance. A nasty accident haunts Marsh and he’s just ready to graduate. Until he’s told he’s missing credits. The only class left to fill his missing credits? Ballroom dancing. To make matters worse, his girlfriend breaks-up with him in front of everyone at a party, leaving him with a new girlfriend he’s never met before…

It takes two to tango…

Acting like the perfect couple isn’t easy when you’ve just met. When the lines between what’s real and pretend blurs, they have to ask themselves: Can you catch feelings for something that’s all pretend?

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

Girl, don’t do it; it’s not worth it. Don’t do it… Don’t do it, Cami. Last time was supposed to be it! Don’t…

Paper crinkled under Cami as she shifted on the exam table, facing the cabinet on the wall. It held a box of gloves, a thermometer, an otoscope, and the little disposable thingies that went with it. She exhaled shakily and squeezed her eyes shut. I swear I’m just thinking about stealing the doctor’s glove; I’m not gonna do it. Last time was it… They are good for cleaning. It would be awful if Devin had to bail me out of jail for stealing gloves in a doctor’s office. I’ll get expelled from school and be forced onto the mean streets of the Tenderloin. I’ll have to fight cats for chicken bones and steal cough syrup to stay high.

Cami’s karma was shot to hell based on her last six months of existence. She didn’t want the big man upstairs to send a bolt of lightning down to obliterate her.

She would be good…

Pushing herself up, she strained to hear any footsteps in the hall. The doctor wouldn’t notice a few missing gloves, would she?

Her phone dinged twice with a text message. It was her best friend, Deja. Saved by the bell.

Where are you?? I thought we were getting lunch? Winter and I are in the restaurant.

Cami slapped her forehead. How could she forget? It was their annual back-to-school tradition. Lunch in Japantown and mochi ice cream afterward. A staple in their friendship since freshmen year and even more important since last semester.

I had to meet with my adviser. Let’s meet for dinner?

Deja’s reply was instant.

Fine. Take a sneak pic of your adviser. Clark is foine.

Cami hung her head. Why did I lie? Deja and Winter, her best friends, knew about her hospital stint. They visited her every day until they had to go home for summer break, right before she finally received her diagnosis. Cami still couldn’t utter the words chronic disease…

She told herself she would confess to them, but when the moment came, she found herself saying viral infection instead. Each time after that, the lie flowed easier and it became harder and harder for her to backpedal. She told herself lying was for a good reason. Cami was tired of being the one people needed to look after. She was reinventing herself after this setback, presenting herself as independent and poised. Even if it was a façade.

Anxiety churned in her stomach, and she hoped her doctor would come back with the results she wanted. A glance at her phone let her know the time.

12:04 PM.

How long had she been sitting here? Twenty or thirty minutes? It was the first day of the semester, and Cami wasn’t letting it slip through her fingers. It was late August and freezing in San Francisco because of the coastal fog and wind. She tugged at the pink chunky sweater she’d paired with a skirt and combat boots. She pulled her knotless braids over her shoulder, biting her lip with a glance at the door before she pushed herself off the exam table.

“I’m just gonna take one. I’ve been through a lot,” she muttered, justifying the petty theft.

Cami plucked a glove from the box and held her breath as if alarms would sound. Once the coast was clear, she took another. Then another. Her hands were full as someone knocked at the door. She squealed, dropping some contraband as she darted across the room and shoved the gloves into her book bag, and plopped her butt back on the exam table, winded from that simple yet covert act.

“Y-yes?”

She tried placing a neutral expression on her face, hoping it didn’t reveal how fast her heart was beating, or her fear that a minor sprint consumed most of her energy.

The door opened, and her doctor’s head appeared. “Camille?”

“Dr. Aguilar.”

The last time Cami was in a hospital, besides her own illness, she found out her father had died. Of course, she didn’t remember this. She had been a toddler; her mother and brother recounted the story solemnly to her years later. It was a good enough excuse to avoid hospitals ever since.

Dr. Aguilar almost changed her mind about hospitals. The older woman’s aura of calmness and matronly appearance never failed to put her at ease. Bracelets adorning both arms and rings on all fingers. Plump. Graying hair. She smiled and her eyes went to the blue glove lying on the floor.

“The gloves fell out of the box…” That was a lame excuse.

Author Bio:

Tinia (TUH-NIA) Montford is a Pisces who’s a sap for romance, especially when there’s (tons of) kissing. Loves eighties sitcoms and will consume anything with chocolate. She graduated from the University of San Francisco with a degree in English and Graphic Design.

She is a world traveler having climbed a volcano in Nicaragua, scaled Angkor Wat in the blistering sun, and roamed the Acropolis of Athens. Oh, she also dabbles in short stories occasionally.

If you can’t catch her writing, you can bet she’s overindulging on poke bowls, listening to the same four songs, or chilling with her adorbs doggie. She is currently pursuing her MFA in Fiction.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest


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Blitz | Violins and Vampires by Cee Bee

Violins and Vampires
CEE BEE
Published by: Monster House Books
Publication date: June 26th 2022
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance

Lexa Uznetsov is trapped
To save my sister, I take on my father’s massive debt to Konstantin the Rus, leader of the New York Bratva. My life becomes a never-ending (and incredibly illegal) stakeout for the mob. There’s barely time to sleep, let alone find love. In desperation, I approach Caelin MacGregor, the handsome Scotsman who runs Empire Investments. After all, what’s the worst that can happen?

Caelin MacGregor is a lost king
Ages ago, I ruled a clan of Bloodkin vampires. My people are born to wield magic, drain humans, and live forever. That’s all over now. I’ve been alone for a thousand years. Today, I no longer care about the sunrise, let alone truly desire a woman. Then, I look upon Lexa. My world turns upside down…

Vampires of the Daemonverse Series
1. Violins and Vampires
2. Veils and Vampires
3. Vixens and Vampires
4. Valor and Vampires

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

LEXA

Another Saturday night, another stakeout.

This time, I’m in the Big Apple Café, watching the apartment of Dr Khatun. It’s a lot of nursing the same cup of java while staring out a window.

Suddenly, a man pauses on the sidewalk outside. This isn’t just any guy, mind you, but Caelin MacGregor, the so-called King of Empire Investments. Rumors are, Vass is a ruthless in business and a bastard in general. I believe those tales. Then there are other whispers. Folks say Caelin is a vampire with mind control powers. I have a different opinion on that.

What a load of B-S.

Caelin pauses, giving me a chance to inspect him more closely. To say that Caelin is just handsome is like declaring that the Mona Lisa is simply a painting.

The slightest shiver rolls across Caelin’s shoulders. Inch by inch, he turns toward me. My pulse skyrockets. Our gazes meet.

Everything goes haywire.

Lights flash in the coffee shop. Street lamps pulse and crackle. A breeze strikes up out of nowhere. Mist pours across the floor. An electric shock of worry moves through my limbs.

This can’t be good.

Everything in the coffee shop goes dark, except for a few beams of moonlight. Moments pass as my eyes adjust. Once I can see clearly again, I can’t believe what’s around me. The cafe is empty. The street outside is deserted as well. The entire city appears dark and abandoned.

And I’ve changed, too. Now I’m sitting on the tabletop with my skirt up and legs parted. A man towers before me.

It’s Caelin.

Maybe I should scream now or run for the exit, but I don’t. Instead, my entire being seems frozen in shock… Except for my ability to soak in more details of Caelin. Up close, this so-called king even more magnetic. A gentle scruff lines his chin. His face is framed with strong bone structure. His full lips appear ripe for a kiss. The gentle scent of musk and leather assaults me. It isn’t fair for this man to be gorgeous and smell good as well.

All this time, Caelin has been staring at me with a look that can only be described as worshipful hunger. Don’t get me wrong. I make side money in bikini contests. Getting ogled is nothing new. But I’ve never been visually devoured in the way that’s happening right now. The sheer intensity makes my core twist with desire. With every cell in my body, I want to touch the curl of hair at the base of Caelin’ neck. Some part of me screams that this whole situation is impossible.

More of me doesn’t care.

Author Bio:

CEE BEE writes stories that blend epic fantasy, steamy romance, and lots of sass. If you want immersive tales that transport you to fresh worlds (and new book boyfriends) then you’ve come to the right author. To learn more about CEE BEE, please visit http://www.ceebeeauthor.com. Her new book, VIOLINS AND VAMPIRES, is available on Kindle Unlimited: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09ZYVCNC3

CEE BEE also writes young adult fare under the name Christina Bauer. Check out Christina’s books at http://www.christinabauerauthor.com. There’s a literal sh*t ton of them.

Website / Blog / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Vlog


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Blitz | Spark of Madness by Brynn Ford

Spark of Madness
Brynn Ford
(Ember Glen, #1)
Publication date: July 21st 2022
Genres: Adult, Dark Romance, Dystopian

In Ember Glen, men purge under the full moon. It’s the duty of women to serve them. When Mercy refuses to serve, Arlo will force her to find absolution through three brutal trials. But will their forbidden romance destroy their world?

Mercy
Neglecting my duty to serve is a sin, and during the last full moon, I became a sinner.

He saw me run from my duty, chased me, and caught me.
He promised me that I would be punished.

But I never could have imagined the hellish fate that would be chosen for me. More than that, I never could have imagined the maddening lust that would spark between me and the man who caught me.

This passion is forbidden…and it might set us on fire.

Arlo
It’s my role to catch the sinners, and Mercy sinned gravely.

I saw her and I chased her, drawn to her inexplicably.
She sparked something within me, but she had to be brought to judgment.

Her punishment is coming in the form of an archaic ritual we’re bringing back to make an example of her. I’ll be her warden, her keeper, the man to ensure she stays alive between her torturous trials.

Something within her brings out the worst of me…and the worst of me wants to ruin her.

AUTHOR NOTE: This is a dark romance series that involves many triggering elements which may be upsetting for some readers. A complete list of tropes and triggers can be found on the author’s website at brynnford.com/triggers.

SERIES NOTE: Spark of Madness is book 1 of 3 in the Ember Glen series and it ends on a cliffhanger. The author plans to publish all 3 books by the end of 2022. The trilogy follows Mercy and Arlo and must be read in order.

READING ORDER
Book 1: Spark of Madness (July 21, 2022)
Book 2: Blaze of Misery (October 20, 2022)
Book 3: Embers of Mercy (December 29, 2022)

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

I sinned.

I ran, and I hid.

I rebelled from my soul’s purpose, and I was promised punishment.

He’s come to punish me.

As soon as the realization hits me, I scramble, kicking against the earth to push myself backward and crawl out from beneath him. He ignores me as I awkwardly rush to my feet and back away; instead, he bends to pick up my mother’s journal.

No!

I lunge for it, but he jerks his hand away, holding the journal beside his head.

“Give that back.”

“No,” he says plainly.

He slowly lowers it in front of him, thumbing open the pages.

I lunge again to snatch it, but he only steps back, narrowing his eyes at me with his head tilted toward the pages. “Stop. Your property is my property now.”

“What?”

What is he saying?

I’m entitled to have my own things.

Except, the Control has license to take authority over the personal property of sinners.

And I’m a sinner now.

I feel frozen as I watch him flip through the pages, reading a sentence here and there. A shiver runs up my spine despite the warmth of the sun, and I hug myself, running my hands up and down my arms. Movement in the distance catches my eye; standing at the tree line, at the edge of the meadow, are the other six members of the Control.

Watching.

Waiting.

The notion of my death claws through my mind, scratching away all other thoughts.

Have they come to kill me?

Will I die today?

How will they do it? Burned at the stake like my mother?

“What is this?” Arlo asks, closing the journal and holding it up. “Is this your mother’s?”

I hear him, but I struggle to respond. The very essence of my being is trapped behind a thick wall of ice inside my mind, frozen and paralyzed to thoughts of punishment and death.

“Forget it,” he says with exasperation. “Come with me.”

He holds out his palm, covered with a black leather glove, and I stare at it as if it’s the strangest thing I’ve ever seen, as if it’s the most terrifying thing I’ve ever seen…because it is.

If I take his hand, he’ll lead me away, only I don’t know where to and I don’t know what will happen then. I don’t know if I’ll be hurt or tortured, or if I’ll be killed immediately.

I lift my gaze from his hand to meet his stare. “Are you going to kill me?”

His eyes are blue—bright blue, like the clear sky above. They sparkle as he watches me, waiting for me to take his outstretched hand.

I think it’s the first time I’ve ever really looked at him. I’ve only known him by name and in passing before the other night in the forest. I knew of him; I’d seen him and could identify him easily. But looking at him now, I know I’ve never truly seen him before.

“Not personally, and certainly not today,” he offers. “Come along now. We have things to discuss.”

“What things?”

He takes a step closer, and instinctively, I step back.

“Mercy.”

“What’s going to happen to me? Please. Can’t you just tell me now?”

“I’m not going to ask you again.” His offered palm twitches with threat. “We will drag you away if you insist on resisting.”

Part of me wants to resist. If my fate has already been decided—and I suspect it has—then resistance won’t change the outcome. Resisting might make me feel like I did something, that I at least tried. That part of me makes my knees bend with the urge to run.


Author Bio:

Brynn Ford writes dark romance for daring readers. She is a lover of the dark, twisted, and playful, and strives to bring these elements into her stories.

When she isn’t obsessively writing, you may find her binge-watching favorite shows while eating far too much junk food or fanatically reading, always seeking to lose herself in the emotional roller coaster of a damn good story.

She’s a firm believer that her characters continue to live outside the pages in the minds of her readers. Stories don’t end just because there aren’t any more pages to turn.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook Page / Facebook Group / Instagram / Newsletter / TikTok / Amazon / Bookbub


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Blitz | Love You Again by Julia Kent

Love You Again
Julia Kent
(Love You, Maine, #2)
Publication date: July 19th 2022
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Contemporary, Romance

Set in the woodsy small town of Luview, “Love You,” Maine – a tourist favorite where every day is Valentine’s Day – local police officer and single dad Luke Luview has spent the last two years making his young daughter his priority after his wife’s death. When first-love Kylie Hood comes back into town under bizarre circumstances, he learns that nothing’s a coincidence – and maybe second chances are possible after all.

If you’re looking for a fun read about first kisses, second chances, featuring a hot single dad small town police officer and his accidental nanny, set in a small town in New England, with a golden retriever named Jester, a heroine whose dream in life is to run a fairy camp, and a hero who wants to build a place where everyone belongs – then this is your book.

Grab a cup of coffee, tea, and maybe some edible glitter, and get your happy meter ready as you read the second book in the Love You, Maine series – where love isn’t just a feeling – it’s a way of life.

✓Single Dad
✓Second chance
✓Small town romance
✓Local police officer and his last-minute nanny
…and a Golden Retriever named Jester

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo / Google Play

EXCERPT:

A white puff of air filled the space between him and the steering wheel, and he realized he’d sighed. How long had he been sitting here, mind and memory in the past? Shoving his hands into gloves, he opened the rear door, grabbed the white plastic bag, and made his way to the front of the bin.

Determined, focused, and grim: That was Luke Luview these days. A bad match for a town that existed to make people feel good about love.

Living in Love You, Maine–heck, being a Luview–was never harder than when you had a broken heart.

Time to let go of some of the pain.

“AAAAAAooooooooo,” called out a band of coyotes in the distance, making Luke jolt. His personal weapon was at home. He didn’t carry it in the glove compartment or on his body when he was off duty, but as the coyote population grew in the area, maybe he should.

A few feet from the donation bin’s front, he looked at the lever to pull down, squeezing the bag slightly. A whiff of Amber’s perfume caught his nose, so faint he almost imagined it.

Colleen had washed all the clothes a few weeks ago, so he knew he imagined Amber’s scent. Didn’t matter. He’d take the illusion. That was how much he hurt.

A skitter inside the box made him frown.

Damn animals. They got in those bins all the time. He felt sorry for the poor sap who emptied these metal boxes, carting all the goods to the warehouse in Manchester where they cleaned and sorted, getting it all ready for the second-hand retail stores.

Just do this, he thought, swallowing hard as the coyotes mated in the distance. The sound was violent and creepy, but for whatever reason, it felt fitting.

Throwing the tangible reminders of that terrible day into the donation box felt dangerous, too.

“I love you, Amber,” he murmured. “But I have to let you go. Have to let that day go. Harriet needs a daddy who isn’t tied down by grief. Just because I’m doing this doesn’t mean I love you any less, though.”

Tears pricked his eyes. “Why is this so hard? Because it’s hard,” he said with a huff. “That’s what you would say if you were here. You’d hug me and comfort me and tell me feelings are meant to be felt or they’d be called something else. You’d have all the right words. I don’t have any. I just have a big hole in my life, Amber. And you’re never going to fill it. Colleen says I can’t feel guilty for moving on. I don’t. But I sure do feel weird.”

And then he reached for the handle, pulled it down, and threw the bag in while calling out loudly, “I love you.”

To his utter shock, she replied from the darkness of the box, “I’m in here!”


Author Bio:

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Julia Kent writes romantic comedy with an edge. Since 2013, she has sold more than 2 million books, with 4 New York Times bestsellers and more than 21 appearances on the USA Today bestseller list. Her books have been translated into French, German, and Italian, with more titles releasing in the future.

From billionaires to BBWs to new adult rock stars, Julia finds a sensual, goofy joy in every contemporary romance she writes. Unlike Shannon from Shopping for a Billionaire, she did not meet her husband after dropping her phone in a men’s room toilet (and he isn’t a billionaire she met in a romantic comedy).

She lives in New England with her husband and three children where she is the only person in the household with the gene required to change empty toilet paper rolls.

She loves to hear from her readers by email at julia@jkentauthor.com, on Twitter @jkentauthor, on Facebook at @jkentauthor, and on Instagram @jkentauthor. Visit her at http://jkentauthor.com

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Amazon / Bookbub / Newsletter


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Blitz | Strut by Jay Hogan

Strut
Jay Hogan
(The Style Series, #2)
Publication date: July 14th 2022
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, LGBTQ+, Romance

New Zealand farm boy turns New York fashion model.
Fairy tale? Maybe. But it hasn’t been easy. A year in this crazy city, working my tail off just to survive in a ruthless industry where sex sells and boundaries are too readily crossed.

A year and a reassuring ocean away from Hunter Donovan—a sexy, humiliating mistake that I’m not about to repeat. Distance is good. Distance is safe.

But now Hunter is back. In New York. In my life. In all those treacherous feelings that haven’t gone anywhere. But when my world suddenly crashes and I have to piece myself back together and fight for my career, will Hunter be there when I need him? Will we have what it takes to make it through this, together?

Note: This book contains themes of sexual harassment and sexual assault.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

Halfway down the block I came upon a small queue outside a tidy brick establishment which proved to be Color. The distant thrum of Ariana Grande leaking through the double wooden doors onto the sidewalk reminded me I was close to a generation older than most of the guys ahead of me waiting to get in.

I joined the line, ignoring a low whistle of interest from one of the guys as I passed. I took his appreciation as reassurance that my skinny black jeans paired with one of Rhys’s new season tight black-and-white-checked T-shirts passed muster. I checked my phone as I waited and fired off a text to my younger sister knowing it was afternoon in New Zealand. A few seconds later the phone rang in my hand, and I smiled and swiped it open.

“Hey, sis.”

“Hey, you. I’m heading to the supermarket. What’s up?”

The line shrank by a couple of guys, and everyone shuffled forward. “Not much. I’m waiting to get into a bar and thought I might catch you.”

Silence. “Hunter Donovan is in a queue?” She chuckled. “You don’t do queues, bro. I thought you rarefied fashionista types skipped those pesky things.”

“It’s not that level of club,” I explained. “Think popular, off-the-beaten-track gay bar. I doubt I’ll see anyone I know and certainly no one who knows me.”

“A gay bar? Ohhhhh, are you on a date?”

“No, I am not on a date. You know me. Besides, I’ve only been here two days.”

“You’re right. I do know you. Which means you’re cruising for some pretty arse. You after a bit of downtown rough, big brother?”

“Jesus, Patty, you sound like a low-budget movie, and we are not having that conversation. Ever. If you must know, I met a guy I worked with in Auckland and he happens to tend bar here. I said I’d drop by.” Kind of, almost.

“Riiiight.” She sounded sceptical. “Do I know them? You’ve always said the best thing about your trips to New York was all the great clubs. I’ve never known you to waste your time on suburban bars.” My sister was way too perceptive.

“True, but this is that model from fashion week last year? The guy Rhys discovered—”

“Oh my god,” she blurted. “That gorgeous hunk of drool you shot for Flare. Alec someone, right?”

“Alec Williamson. He got signed by Cage Talent after the show and has been in New York since. I ran into him quite by chance.”

Patty was quiet for a few seconds as the cogs in her brain ticked over. “But you liked him, right?”

What the fuck? I said nothing

.

“You can’t lie to me, Hunter. I know you. He’s the one hanging in your office on your wall of fame, aka my personal wall of hotness. He’s wearing Rhys’s design. Holy shit, Hunter. Do you have a thing? Are you—”

I needed to shut this down fast. “He’s hanging there because it was my best friend’s signature shoot for his new label,” I argued. “Not because it’s Alec.”

“Mm-hmm.” There was an irritating smile in her voice. “Pull the other one. I called into Flare that day, remember? You couldn’t take your eyes off him. Neither could I, to be honest, but you were a little smitten kitten.”

I so was. “I so wasn’t. You’re dreaming. Alec is a great model, that’s all. If I was smitten, it was on a purely professional level.”

“And yet you’re queuing to have a drink at the place he works?”

Well, when you put it like that. “Maybe.” It was all she was getting. “It’s the friendly thing to do, right?”

“Aha. Yep. Very neighbourly of you. Oh, here’s a thought. If you like him, how about you keep it in your pants for once, at least for more than a day? Get to know him.”

Too fucking late. “Oh, look at that, the bouncer’s waving me in. Gotta go, sis. Nice talking to you.” I stabbed the End Call button, stared at the double doors for a second, took a deep breath, and then pushed through.

The immediate assault to my eardrums almost rattled my brain from my skull. Add that to the heaving crowd and multicoloured light display circling the room and dripping down the walls, and I needed a minute to orient myself. I passed the coat check desk and slid against the closest wall to take a look around.

The place was humming, the music pulsing loudly above the thrum of a hundred different conversations, while the surprisingly spacious dancefloor writhed with every possible combination of couples, throuples, and dogpiles of slick bodies. Like the queue outside, it was a younger crowd, mostly early twenties, but with enough around my age to drop the creep factor to acceptable. I watched the dancers for a bit, appreciating all the hot skin and tight muscle on display before scouting the bar.

“You wanna dance?” A warm body leaned close, and I turned to find an attractive dark-haired man just inches from my face. He had the greenest eyes I’d ever seen and a pouty mouth made for sucking cock. He licked his lips and ran his hand up my arm. “You’re fucking gorgeous.”

On any other night I would’ve had him down the back and on his knees with my dick down his throat in about five minutes flat, but I wasn’t even tempted—a disturbing fact that was worth an alarm bell or two. Instead, I simply smiled and covered his hand with mine.

“Thanks. You’re pretty hot yourself, but I’m meeting someone.”

Author Bio:

Heart, humour and keeping it real.

Jay is a 2020 Lambda Literary Award Finalist in Gay Romance and her book Off Balance was the 2021 New Zealand Romance Book of the Year.

She is a New Zealand author writing mm romance and romantic suspense, primarily set in New Zealand. She writes character driven romances with lots of humour, a good dose of reality and a splash of angst. She’s travelled extensively, lived in many countries, and in a past life she was a critical care nurse, nurse educator and counsellor. Jay is owned by a huge Maine Coon cat and a gorgeous Cocker Spaniel

Author Links


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Blitz | One Kind Hero by Christine DePetrillo

One Kind Hero
Christine DePetrillo
(Heart of a Wounded Hero)
Publication date: July 14th 2022
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

What do you do when your life plan goes up in flames?

Army sniper Reid Colborn has nothing left. His last mission was technically a success. Enemy hit. Boy rescued. Day saved. Getting trapped in a burning building, however, wasn’t part of the plan. Now Reid doesn’t have a steady shooting arm, and his military career is over. Heading back to his hometown of Maplehaven, Vermont is not the next target he’d hoped for, but he’s out of choices.

Until architect Valerie Bellerose gives him another option.

When Valerie sees Reid, every detail of their one night together as teens nearly ten years ago comes flooding back. Not that the memory had ever died. Reid had given her something that had made it impossible to forget him. Now that he’s back, can they have a second chance to hit their mark?

Is one kind hero high enough caliber to build the family they’ve always wanted?

One Kind Hero is a second-chance, small-town, steamy contemporary romance novella with a wounded military hero searching for what comes next after losing everything. For more romances set in Maplehaven, check out the One Kind Deed Series also by Christine DePetrillo.

The Heart of the Wounded Hero series was created to pay tribute to and raise awareness of our wounded heroes. Each of the over eighty authors involved have contributed time, money, and stories to the cause. These love stories are inspiring and uplifting, showing the sacrifice of our veterans but also giving them the happily ever after they deserve.

By increasing awareness through our books, we believe we can in a small part help the wounded heroes that have sacrificed so much. Thank you for reading.

Goodreads / Purchase

EXCERPT:

Reid

I have a place to stay and a job to go to. I need to quit whining and suck it up. That’s hard to do, however, when the treasured motorcycle I owned and rebuilt myself as a teenager is staring at me right now.

Straddling it, I love feeling it beneath me. The seat contours to my body. The paint finish is still glossy because Uncle Karl kept a cover over it. The chrome parts glint in the overhead lights. My left hand wraps around the left handlebar, the grip molding to my palm, as I lean forward a bit. I tighten my hold and imagine zipping down the open road.

I reach for the right handlebar with my right hand. The grip hits my palm, but my fingers won’t close all the way around it. My entire right arm shakes at being stretched out. There’s absolutely no way I can steer this motorcycle ever again.

I slam my left hand into the handlebar and get off the bike. The urge to kick the thing onto its side is overwhelming, but I get rational at the last second and refrain from doing so. Instead, I drape the cover back over the motorcycle.

Out of sight, out of mind.

If only I could drape a cover over myself, but all I have is a green Brenton Sawmill baseball hat and a matching sawmill T-shirt. Smoothing the wrinkles out of the shirt, I stomp out of the barn. The morning sunlight is too harsh, too cheerful. I should have picked a rainier, gloomier place to restart my entire life.


Author Bio:

Christine DePetrillo can often be found hugging trees, conversing with dragonflies, and walking barefoot through sun-warmed soil. She finds joy in listening to the wind, bathing in moonlight, and breathing in the fragrances of things that bloom. If she had her way, the sky would be the only roof over her head.

Her love of nature seeps into every story she tells. As does her obsession with bearded mountain men who build, often smell like sawdust, and know how to cherish the women they love. Today she writes tales meant to make you laugh, maybe make you sweat, and definitely make you believe in the power of love.

She lives in Vermont with her husband and cat who defend her fiercely from all evils.

Visit her and sign up for her newsletter at http://www.christinedepetrillo.weebly.com anytime.

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Blitz | Mermaid of St. Moritz by Jincey Lumpkin

Mermaid of St. Moritz
Jincey Lumpkin
(Mermaid of Venice, #5)
Publication date: July 11th 2022
Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Romance

Billionaire mermaid Gia Acquaviva is back for the riveting fifth installment of the Mermaid of Venice series. Gia struggles with intense feelings for a man from her past, while her passionate love affair with a Hollywood actress threatens to ruin it all.

The Mermaid Civil War unleashes Ancient Magic, putting both mermaids and mankind in danger. Caught in the middle of warring factions is Gia’s daughter, Serena. Will the child master her magical powers, or will she become a casualty of war?

Everything’s on the line for Gia. Will her risky behavior cause her to lose everything she’s worked so hard to regain?

Tropes:

• Love triangle
• Enemies to lovers
• Secret affair
• Billionaire romance
• Paranormal romantic suspense

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

They call it the “Top of the World.” The glitterati come to St. Moritz for its famous ski slopes, but they stayed for the champagne climate. Home to mineral springs and abundant forests, the chic village also draws a summer crowd. Late spring brings heavy rain and wildflowers as far as the eye can see. Today, though, the sun awoke and claimed the day.

Gia rose from her slumber to find Florent making her an espresso. They had their coffee on the deck, soaking in all that Alpine glory.

She finally felt relaxed again, knowing that she had taken care of Yiannis for good.

“The scenery reminds me of the Sound of Music,” Florent mused.

“Oh?” Gia asked. “Will you run to the top of the mountain and serenade me like Julie Andrews?”

Florent chuckled. “You would like that, wouldn’t you? Seeing me turn round and round in circles?”

“I am sure we can find you an apron somewhere. I would like the full experience, please.”

He slid out of his chair and approached her, nuzzling her face with his prickly, unshaven skin.

She put both hands on his cheeks and kissed him.

“Mmm!” Florent smiled with a devilish grin. “I almost forgot, Gia! I have a surprise for you.”

She grunted. “You know I hate surprises.”

“Oh, but you will love this. I have organized a private yoga session… with baby goats!”

“Florent, stop. Do not tease me.”

“I am quite serious, Gia! I thought you could bring the au pair… and Serena could pet those smelly little goats. My daughter loves all animals. Serena is probably the same.”

Gia realized for the first time that Serena had never been around any animal. The baby didn’t exactly have a normal start to her life.

“All right,” Gia accepted, feeling amused by this new development on the itinerary. “I will shower and then… baby goats.”


Author Bio:

Jincey Lumpkin is a writer who splits her time between NYC and Lisbon. She has been profiled by Dateline NBC, Vice, and GQ, among others. Out Magazine listed her in its “OUT 100,” naming her as one of the world’s most influential LGBTQ+ people, alongside celebrities like Laverne Cox and Ricky Martin. Sign up for free stories at JinceyLumpkin.com

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Blitz | The Sisterhood of Secrets by Winnifred Tataw

The Sisterhood of Secrets
Winnifred Tataw
(The Gods’ Scion, #4)
Publication date: July 1st 2022
Genres: Contemporary, Fantasy

Author Winnifred Tataw explores kingdoms and worldbuilding in this fantasy novel full of secrets and twists in her latest book, The Sisterhood of Secrets.

The story follows Arcelia, her flawed family, and Prince Rodrick, as they tumble through the deserts and underground city of Siesa Arid. Everything has been off since she found out her mother could be a murderer with the whispers of lies and broken promises hanging over her head. She hopes that a visit to her twin cousins’ homeland of Siesa Arid may be the kind of family reconciliation she’s been hoping to have. Arcelia and Rodrick are troubled by threats from a criminal organization; they become overwhelmed with moral questions of right and wrong. All with the help and under the watchful eye of the Archangel and God of Life.

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EXCERPT:

“The queen called for me,” I said.

One of them nodded as he knocked on Queen Riva’s office door. After a short while, she didn’t answer the door, so he hit it again.

“What is it?” she grumbled from the other side.

The guards cautiously opened the door to speak to the Queen.

“Let her in,” was all I heard echoed back.

The two guards stepped out to let me inside the office.

“Thank you,” I said to them as I was face to face with the Queen of Diar. She was still in her royal ceremony attire, with fewer jewels and hairpins adorning her. Her crown no longer sat on her head, yet no strand of silver hair laid out of place. The room’s lights were soft and dimmed, with a light cinnamon aroma.

I bowed. “Good evening, Queen Riva.”

“Good evening, Duchess,” she pointed to the seat in front of her desk. “Please have a seat.” I did as I was told and sat down, letting the yellow dress drape over the legs of the chair.

“So, how did you enjoy my son’s wedding?” she asked.

“It was beautiful. Honestly, it was fun seeing a different type of wedding.” I smiled softly. The queen’s face didn’t move. It was pretty chilling.

“That’s good.” She sighed, “Well. You are smart enough to know I didn’t call you here for just small talk.”

I nodded. I could hear my heartbeat slowly rising. I was so nervous. Throughout all the years I had been with Rodrick, Riva had never asked to talk to me like this.

“The reason for this conversation wasn’t planned, Duchess.” the Queen said. “I had only thought of it until today as my son’s wedding proceeded.”

She rubbed her temple and looked me in the eye. “As you know, Rodrick may be in that same position one day.”

I looked down at my manicure. “Yes—”

She cut me off, “Look at me when you’re talking to me, Duchess.”

I quickly snapped my head back up. “My apologies.”

She droned. “Just don’t do it—no need for apologies.”

I nodded again. “Yes, I’m aware that Rodrick will get married one day…or that he wants to…I think.” My nerves were finally getting to me. I didn’t know where she was going with this. I didn’t know how I was to answer her without stepping on her toes or getting on her wrong side.

“And as we all know,” Queen Riva continued, “Rodrick is the Acolyte of Time.”

She sighed. “As the Acolyte of Time, Rodrick is mighty. Even without the status of the prince, he still holds a great deal of power both physically and institutionally in the world.” Queen Riva clapped her hands together. “And I may not know if this is true for the other followers of the gods, but, for Tempus, this isn’t the first time a Royal has been an Acolyte.”

I raised my brows. This was new information to me. But how would I know?

She stared at me, her icy blue eyes sending shivers down my spine. “So as a contingency plan of some sorts, we placed the rule the Royal family placed in law. If an Acolyte were to marry and be of Royal blood…they would have to give up their title.”

My mouth dropped. “Are you serious?!”


Author Bio:

Winnifred or Winnie, as most know her by, is an artist, writer, and author of her debut novel: The Gods’ Scion: Child of Tempus. As a military child, Winnie has traveled extensively around the US East Coast and Germany, learning about the history, lore, and culture of each region. Winnie has spent the last two years writing and expanding the world of The Gods’ Scion trilogy series. Winnie has had a lifelong love of literature and art. As a new writer she wants to create beautiful fantasy world with compelling and intriguing characters. Winnie resides in South Carolina and is an undergraduate at the College of Charleston. She loves to spread positivity and joy to those around her, and look at the world through a glittery pink lens.

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Blitz | Spells and Slip-Ups by Annie Anderson

Spells and Slip-ups
Annie Anderson
(The Wrong Witch, #1)
Publication date: July 5th 2022
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy

I suck at witchcraft.

Coming from a long line of famous witches, I should be at the top of the heap. Problem is, if there is a spell cast anywhere in my vicinity, I will somehow mess it up. As a probationary agent with the Arcane Bureau of Investigation, I have two choices: I can limp along and maybe pass myself off as a competent agent, or I can fail. Miserably.

Worse news? If I can’t get my act together, I may not only be out of a job, I could also lose my life.

Whose idea was this again?

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

“Get out,” he barked, crossing his beefy arms over his substantial belly. “Ain’t no way I’m gonna let a Bannister tromp all over my shop. Who knows what you’ll break?”

Not that half the shit in this hovel wasn’t broken already, but still, tears prickled at my eyes. Gritting my teeth against the sting, I managed to stand my ground. This wasn’t the first time I’d been kicked out of a witch shop, and given my history, it wouldn’t be the last.

“Please,” I begged, reaching inside my bag for the wad of cash. Ellie and I had planned on moving in together after college, but here we were two years post-graduation, with no apartment in sight. Unearthing the fistful of bills, I held them in front of me to ward off my ousting. “I can pay.”

His gaze snagged on the money in my hand, and he licked his chops. By the looks of this place, Mr. Jones hadn’t seen a paying customer in longer than I’d been alive. “What? You stub your toe or somethin’? I ain’t wasting my time on no silly girl with a hangnail.”

Don’t back talk the healer, Wren. Don’t do it.

“It’s not for me, you judgmental ass. It’s for my best friend’s mom. Do you really think I’d be tromping through here looking for you if it was something I could fix with a nail clipper and a manicurist? I’m liable to get tetanus in this heap.” Gnashing my teeth, I took a deep breath, doing my damnedest to not start screaming. “It’s systemic organ failure. Can you fix that?”

Carmichael narrowed his eyes. “Your friend’s mom. Not your mom?” A slow smile pulled across his lips, exposing yellowed teeth and a fair amount of tooth decay. “You have my interest. What class is your friend’s mother? She a witch like you or…”

This was the sticking point. If I couldn’t get him to agree, Alice had no hope. It wasn’t like I could bribe my way into my mother’s good graces or beg my father.

“Human,” I breathed, praying he wouldn’t make a fuss.

He simply blinked at me for a solid thirty seconds. “I’m sorry—what was that?”

Stomping through the piles of junk, I slapped the money on the counter before reaching into my bag for the second roll of bills. It was my entire savings. Everything I’d squirreled away to set myself up. It wasn’t just an apartment I was getting. It was a chance.

But it meant nothing if Alice wasn’t breathing.

“She’s human,” I hissed. “Are you gonna help me or not?” The bank teller had audibly squawked when I’d pulled every dime from my account, her face purpling when I’d asked for it in cash.

Carmichael reached for the bills, but I slapped his hand before he could get within an inch. “Are you helping, or am I going to have to go down to the River Walk and deal with them?”

The “them” in question were the Fae, and I had no intention of dealing with that sort at all. Ever. Making deals with fairies was tantamount to jumping off a cliff with piranhas, sharks, and razor-sharp rocks at the bottom. Anyone who had ever made a fairy deal regretted it, and I wouldn’t be making the same mistake.

Luckily, my poker face was top-notch—otherwise Carmichael would have seen right through my bluff.

“What you’re asking for is illegal, you know.”

Author Bio:

Annie Anderson is a military wife and United States Air Force veteran. Originally from Dallas, Texas, she is a southern girl at heart, but has lived all over the US and abroad. As soon as the military stops moving her family around, she’ll settle on a state, but for now she enjoys being a nomad with her husband, two daughters, an old man of a dog, and a young pup that makes life… interesting.

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Blitz | Unexpected by Felice Stevens

Unexpected
Felice Stevens
Publication date: June 23rd 2022
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, LGBTQ+, Romance, Sports

Party planner Colin Brightman doesn’t drink or dance, preferring to go to bed early with his spreadsheets and lists. All he wants is to forget the singles weekend his friends sent him on, but he’s stuck with a suitcase filled with condoms and skimpy Speedos that don’t belong to him.

He doesn’t expect his luggage thief to be ex-baseball superstar Walker “Walk-Off” Scanlon. Or that Walker has hired his firm to put on a charity event at his bar. Colin can’t deny the mixed emotions the annoyingly flirty man stirs in him, but he refuses to fall for someone who racks up lovers as easily as he once hit home runs.
No matter how much he might want to.

Walker Scanlon likes his men easygoing with no complications. He’s had enough of those in his life. So why is he drawn to tense and straitlaced Colin and his frosty scowl?When even his corny one-liners and jokes don’t get him a smile? Because the sparks between them are undeniable. And that unexpected kiss? Amazin’.

Now if only Colin would stop running away.

When Colin and Walker come face to face with past hurts and betrayals, they’ll need to trust themselves and each other to learn that heartbreak and love don’t go hand in hand. It’s the bottom of the ninth and if they swing for the stars, they just might hit the grand slam of a lifetime.

Unexpected is a low-angst, high-heat romance between a corny joke-telling ex-baseball player who doesn’t believe in striking out on or off the field and a divorced, tea-drinking homebody who isn’t willing to get played…again.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

Damn, Colin Brightman was cute when flustered. Walker wasn’t sure what the hell he was doing flirting with him. It wasn’t smart to screw around with people who worked for you, but there was a haunted look in the man’s eyes that those long, dark lashes couldn’t hide. He sensed Colin kept quite a bit about himself secret, and Walker had always been a sucker for a good mystery.

“I’m surprised you noticed me,” Colin said, “since you seemed to be so into your dance partners.” As if realizing that his statement revealed his awareness of Walker, Colin fumbled a bit. “I mean, when I saw you on the dance floor, you were always surrounded.”

Too late, Colin Brightman. So you’re not made of stone. Good to know.

“Well, I saw you. Especially that last night. You were at a table, drinking something with an umbrella.”

“Like I said, I don’t drink much.” He picked up his more than half-full drink as if to prove his point. “See?”

“I’ll keep that in mind for next time. Stock up on my little umbrellas.” He winked, and a flush crept up Colin’s neck to his face.

Aren’t you adorable? Are you pink all over?


Author Bio:

Felice Stevens has always been a romantic at heart. She believes that while life is tough, there is always a happy ending around the corner. Her characters have to work for it, because just like life in NYC, nothing comes easy and that includes love.

Felice is the 2020 Lambda Literary Award winning author in best Gay Romance. She lives in New York City and has way too much black in her wardrobe. If she’s not writing, you’ll probably find her watching reality TV or procrastinating on FB in her reader group, Felice’s Breakfast Club.

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