Review | A California Christmas by Brenda Novak

Up-and-coming TV anchor Emery Bliss can’t imagine anything more humiliating than the sex tape her ex revenge-posted online. That is, until it causes her to lose her job on top of her self-esteem. Seeking solace—and anonymity—in Silver Springs, Emery isn’t looking to get involved with another man anytime soon. But when she’s thrown back into contact with Dallas Turner, she sees something that his many detractors have missed.

Being home for the holidays and his adoptive mother’s wedding isn’t where mountain climber Dallas feels most comfortable. Thanks to his troubled childhood, he’d rather be on a rock face alone than trying to connect with people. Emery, however, makes him want to overcome his past…somehow.

Both Emery and Dallas had been planning on a quiet, solitary Christmas, but the sparks between them are lighting a fire strong enough to last—possibly forever. 

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I was excited to pick this one up as I do enjoy books set at Christmas time, or centered around holidays. While this one does have Christmas in the title, it isn’t necessarily a Christmas story and could be read any time of the year. I really enjoyed how the characters had to grow and face their own difficulties before figuring out if they could take the chance to be together. The chemistry between Emery and Dallas was incredibly crafted and really great to read. Their individual journeys and working through their own roadblocks really added to the story.

I would definitely want to pick up other books in the series to see how they connect, but I would say that you don’t have to have read the series to read this book. I’m not sure if having read the previous books would add anything, but this does work as a stand alone.

Happy reading!

Blog Tour | The Trouble with Picket Fences by Teri Wilson | Review

She could teach him to turn lemons into lemonade.

All her life, Melanie Carlisle knew how to succeed in the face of failure. So when she finds herself pregnant—and her ex-boyfriend bows out, claiming he’s not the “picket fence type”—Melanie is on her own. Now she has a house—with a picket fence she wants gone. Cap McBride is dealing with his own problems, what with a potentially career-ending hearing loss and his surly teenager. So the last thing he wants to do is get involved with a single pregnant woman. As for fences? The only thing he knows how to do is put them up!

Lovestruck, Vermont

Will this fence make good neighbors into something more in the latest installment of award-winning author Teri Wilson’s Lovestruck, Vermont series?

Buy Links | Harlequin | IndieBound | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Walmart | Apple Books | Google Play | Kobo

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This is the first book I’ve read from this series, and while I do feel it can be read as a stand alone, it may be better if they are read in order as there are probably things in this book that spoil things in the first couple books. That being said I really enjoyed this very sweet love story. The love aspect did happen very quickly, but that doesn’t mean the story was over at that point. Our main characters legitimately have obstacles they have to overcome in their relationship and lives and I felt like the positivity that was reflected throughout the story played off of this well. I really enjoyed the writing style and pacing, which made this a quick and enjoyable read.

USA Today Bestselling Author Teri Wilson writes heartwarming romance with a touch of whimsy. Three of Teri’s books have been adapted into Hallmark Channel Original Movies, including UNLEASHING MR. DARCY (plus its sequel MARRYING MR. DARCY), THE ART OF US and NORTHERN LIGHTS OF CHRISTMAS, based on her book SLEIGH BELL SWEETHEARTS. She is also a recipient of the prestigious RITA Award for excellence in romantic fiction for her novel THE BACHELOR’S BABY SURPRISE.

Author Links | Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Happy reading!

Review | The Summer Set by Aimee Agresti

The real drama happens backstage in this juicy novel about an idyllic summer theater where hot stars, has-beens and hopefuls chase roles—and each other.

Charlie Savoy was once Hollywood’s hottest A-lister. Now, ten years later, she’s pushing forty, exiled from the film world and back at the summer Shakespeare theater that launched her career—and where her old flame, Nick, is the artistic director.

It’s not exactly her first choice. But as parts are cast and rehearsals begin, Charlie is surprised to find herself getting her groove back, bonding with celebrity actors, forging unexpected new friendships and even reigniting her spark with Nick, who still seems to bring out the best in her despite their complicated history.

Until Charlie’s old rival, Hollywood’s current it girl, is brought in to attract theater donors, threatening to undo everything she’s built. As the drama amps up both on the stage and behind the curtains, Charlie must put on the show of a lifetime to fight for the second chance she deserves in career and in love.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

While second chance romances are not always my thing, the theater setting and mentions of Shakespeare were what drew me in to read this book. I did enjoy the overall story and many of the side characters, as well as the journey our main characters went on to rediscover themselves and each other, but there were some things that took me out of the story. Our main female character does seem to have a younger voice than one would think for her age, but this may have been the intention when looking at her life as explained in the story. There were some instance where I felt that some of the side characters were almost more compelling. I did really love all of the theater talk and settings, so that was a wonderful aspect of this book. Overall it was a fun story and romance, and was an enjoyable read.

Happy reading!

Review | Fairy Godmothers, Inc. by Saranna DeWylde

First in a magical new series full of edgy and hilarious antics, this is the read you need to finally give your year the fairy-tale ending it deserves! An enchanting story of love, dreams, and second chances—a delightful read for cold winter nights that fans of Christina Lauren, Tessa Bailey, and Kerry Winfrey can’t miss…

If love is the source of all the magic in the universe, and the town of Ever After, Missouri, is the epicenter of enchantment, then the locals are in dire need of a reboot. At least according to resident fairy godmothers Petunia, Jonquil, and Bluebonnet. Their solution? Blow a bit of fairy dust in the direction of those in need of romance…what could possibly go wrong?

SOME KIND OF AWFUL…
Lucky Fujiki’s first name is a cosmic joke. Her luck is so bad, even the number seven steers clear of her. But when her adorable godmothers ask for a favor, Lucky can’t say no–even if she can already feel the bad juju waiting to strike. And her mission is even worse than she imagined: to promote Ever After as a wedding destination by faking a marriage to her first love and long-time ex, Ransom Payne–he of the Embarrassing Incident that neither of them will ever live down…

OR ALL KINDS OF WONDERFUL?
Ransom Payne has spent years building an impressive new reputation for himself, and now his godmothers want him to pretend to wed the one girl he’d like most to forget? Sure, weddings in Ever After could be a huge boon for his chocolate business, but risking more up-close-and-personal time with Lucky? Considering the stakes, it’s a curse he’ll have to bear, at the risk of being humiliated–or perhaps, bewitched… 

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I’m so glad I got the chance to pick this one up as it was exactly what I needed. It’s a fun rom com with a dash of magic and fantasy thrown in. We do get both the fake relationship trope and the second chance trope in this one, which aren’t always my favorites, but they perfectly worked in this one.

I was really pleasantly surprised at the characters themselves. Both Ransom and Lucky have their own obstacles and journeys they have to go on before they can really work on their relationship – and seeing the work being done on both of their parts was nice to see. The humor kept a lot of it light and there were moments that were very serious, so I felt there was a good balance.

I definitely feel like this is a great start to a new series and look forward to further books in the series as well as further work from Saranna DeWylde.

Thanks so much to the publisher for sending me a copy of this book! Happy reading!

Blog Tour | Back in the Texan’s Bed by Naima Simone | Review

He’s going to claim his child and the woman who got away…from USA TODAY bestselling author Naima Simone. Will they ever learn that giving in to desire is playing with fire?

After discovering he has a secret son, oil heir Ross Edmond isn’t letting Charlotte Jarrett walk away again. He proposes they move in together—to share their son…and a bed. But Charlotte has secrets, and Ross doesn’t know the real reason his family’s former chef left town three years ago—and they still have a powerful enemy who could bring them both down…

Buy Links | Harlequin | B&N | Booksamillion | Amazon | Indie bound

Rating: 3 out of 5.

This story contains a few different tropes, some that I often enjoy and some that don’t always hit right for me. I always enjoy a good second chance romance but the secret baby storyline isn’t always what I reach for. I really enjoyed the Charlotte herself, but the miscommunication between her and Ross was just too much for too long. There were also some instances where side characters didn’t seem to be quite consistent between their words and actions, but most of the characters were enjoyable to read. All in all I did enjoy the story and would read more of Naima Simone’s writing as I thoroughly enjoyed it.

USA Today Bestselling author Naima Simone’s love of romance was first stirred by Johanna Lindsey and Nora Roberts years ago. Well not that many. She is only eighteen…ish. Published since 2009, she spends her days writing sizzling romances with heart, a touch of humor and snark. She is wife to Superman–or his non-Kryptonian equivalent–and mother to the most awesome kids ever. They live in perfect, sometimes domestically-challenged bliss in the southern US.

Author Links | Website | Facebook | Twitter

Happy reading!

Blog Tour | Forgiven by Garrett Leigh | Review

High school sweethearts Mia and Luke get a second chance at love in this brand-new contemporary romance from award-winning author Garrett Leigh. 

When Mia Amour returns to England to open a florist shop, all she wants to do is put her lousy ex behind her and never look back. But getting a fresh start is easier said than done when her first love, the boy who once broke her teenage heart, strolls back into her life. He’s every bit as sexy as she remembers, and the urge to melt back into his arms almost makes her forget how devastated she was when he took off without a word. Almost. 

Left with no choice, Luke Daley did what he had to do, leaving town to earn enough money to save his broken family, though it just about broke him, too. But now he’s back, running his uncle’s business and trying desperately to forget about Mia, the girl he left behind all those years ago. When he runs into her in town, the shock of seeing her again brings an intense rush of emotions: love, guilt…and an overwhelming urge to find out if it’s still as amazing between them as it used to be.

It doesn’t take either of them long to give in to desire and discover the fiery passion they once shared burns hotter than ever. With each new touch, each moment of forgiveness, old hurts heal and the future they’d hoped for ten years ago becomes possible again. But their fragile connection is tested by a threat neither of them saw coming—a threat that could end their second chance before it even gets started.

BUY LINKS | Harlequin.com | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books | Google Play | Kobo

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Oh boy, if you’re looking for a second chances romance that is full of angst and very strong emotions, then this one will fit the bill. These characters and their feelings towards each other were deep rooted and intense, but not in a bad way. I really enjoyed Mia and Luke’s journey even though some of Mia’s reactions and emotions seemed perhaps a little too much, still it was believable with what she had been through as well as her personality overall.

It was an intense story, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. The writing style was easy to read and moved along at a good pace which made this a perfect read for a single sitting. I also really enjoyed some of the side characters and their interactions, which pointed towards the next book in the series.

Garrett Leigh is an award-winning British writer and book designer.

Garrett’s debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.

When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.

Garrett is also an award winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at blackjazzdesign.com, and co-owns the specialist stock site moonstockphotography.com with photographer Dan Burgess

Connect with Garrett Leigh

Happy reading!

Blog Tour | Mine to Keep by Rhenna Morgan | Review

Bonnie Drummond is from the wrong side of the tracks, raised in a family of liars and criminals. No matter how hard she tries to stay on the straight and narrow, she always finds herself sucked back into the family drama, forced to sacrifice everything she’s earned to protect her family.

But this time they’ve gone too far—crossed the wrong people—and to save them she’ll have to put her life on the line.

Roman Kozlov, enforcer for a New Orleans mafiya family, is the poster child for the life Bonnie is struggling to escape. But he’s also as alluring as he is dangerous, and it doesn’t take long for their lives to begin to mesh.

With Roman, Bonnie finds the family she never had.

As their race for answers heats up, so too does the budding romance between them. And with danger nipping at her heels and love threatening her heart, Bonnie must come face-to-face with her past if she wants to have a future.

Buy Mine to Keep | Harlequin.com | IndieBound | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | KoboGoogle

After reading Hers to Tame I was excited to get the chance to read more from Rhenna Morgan and I have to say I wasn’t disappointed. I really enjoyed this story as well as the relationship between Roman and Bonnie. Bonnie of course was hesitant to some things because of her history with her family and Roman was definitely an alpha personality, but the way things came together was wonderful.

Though this one is part of a series you can definitely read it without reading the previous books. Morgan’s writing style is quick to read and has a ton of not only character development, but the plot is paced really well and constantly keeps you going forward.

A native Oklahoman, Rhenna Morgan is a certified romance junkie. Whether it’s contemporary, paranormal, or fantasy you’re after, Rhenna’s stories pack romantic escape full of new, exciting worlds, and strong, intuitive men who fight to keep the women they want. For advance release news and exclusive content, sign up for her newsletter at http://RhennaMorgan.com. You’ll also find all of her social links there, along with her smoking hot inspiration boards.

Connect with Rhenna Morgan | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Happy reading!

Blog Tour | A Soldier Under Her Tree by Kathy Douglass | Review

Tis the season…for a second shot at love. Could a fake boyfriend be her real hero this Christmas?

When her ex-fiancé shows up at her shop—engaged to her sister!—dress designer Hannah Carpenter doesn’t know what to do. Especially when her former fling Russell Danielson sees her plight and rides to the rescue, offering a fake relationship to foil her rude relations. The thing is, there’s nothing fake about his kiss… But when things get real, will the sexy soldier once again stop short of commitment?

Buy Links | Harlequin | B&N | Booksamillion | Amazon | Indie bound

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I’m definitely in the mood for sweet Christmas stories, especially romances, right now and this one perfectly hit the spot. The pacing was good and the writing flowed really well so that this story just flew by. I did enjoy the characters and the progression that happened throughout the story with their own personal issues and growth over the span of the story. I really enjoyed Russell and Hannah as a couple and felt like everyone felt realistic and well developed.

Kathy Douglass came by her love of reading naturally – both of her parents were readers. She would finish one book and pick up another. Then she attended law school and traded romances for legal opinions. After the birth of her two children, her love of reading turned into a love of writing. Kathy now spends her days writing the small town contemporary novels she enjoys reading. Kathy loves to hear from her readers and can be found on Facebook.

Happy reading!

Review | Custom Built by Chantel Fernando

New York Times bestselling author Chantal Fernando brings you Fast & Fury: A sexy new series fully loaded with intense emotions and edge-of-your-seat suspense.

After losing her job, saying goodbye to a lifelong dream, and having an all-around cruddy year, Bronte Pierce needs a break. A job at Fast & Fury might be just the thing to reset her life, even though she knows nothing about custom motorcycles.  But taking a job isn’t the same as keeping it, and her fresh start quickly turns into a fresh nightmare.

Starting with her boss. Crow is hard-headed, stubborn and brutally honest. He may be easy on the eyes, but he runs with an MC, and he’s anything but friendly to Bronte. She suspects he has a softer side—just not for her.

Her whole life, Bronte has known that the only person she can truly count on to save the day is herself. But when a single murder turns into a conspiracy and the threat to her life is more than she can handle alone, it’s Crow who comes through—and her newfound family might just become her greatest strength.

Buy Custom Built by Chantal Fernando | IndieBound | Harlequin.com | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books | Google PlayKobo

Rating: 4 out of 5.

When this book first starts you are immediately sucked into the difficulties Bronte is experiencing, and man does she go through a lot in a short period of time. This definitely serves to establish her character and perseverance. The story is very fast paced and there are many things that happen very quickly.

The mystery and suspense element to the story was enjoyable and this is one of those stories that can easily be consumed in one sitting. I really enjoyed Chantal Fernando’s writing style and will definitely be picking up more of her works in the future.

Chantal Fernando is the New York Times bestselling author of the Wind Dragons Motorcycle Club series, the Cursed Raven Motorcycle Club series, and the Maybe series, along with several other novels. She lives in Western Australia, where she is working on her next book.

Connect with Chantal Fernando | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Happy reading!

Blog Tour | Claiming the Rancher’s Heir by Maisey Yates | Review

Arrogant, infuriating, insufferable… And the sexiest man she’s ever met.

Wren Maxfield hates Creed Cooper, but now she’s working with the wealthy rancher over the holidays! Those strong feelings hide undeniable chemistry…and one wild night results in pregnancy. Now Creed vows to claim his heir. That means proposing a marriage in name only. But as desire takes over, is that a deal they can keep?

Includes Rancher’s Wild Secret, a bonus story!

Emerson Maxfield is a sheltered beauty who never steps out of line. Now she must marry her family’s enemy before desire spells downfall for them all…

Sales links | Harlequin | B&N | Amazon | Indie Bound | Walmart

Rating: 4 out of 5.

From page one you could tell that this was going to be hate to love, with very intense hate going on. I did enjoy the characters and their interactions, but there were definitely times when I felt there was just a little too much of the discourse. I also enjoyed the family interactions and side characters.

The writing was fast paced and easy to read, the book itself can easily be read in a single sitting as it does suck you right in with the way it starts. I do think that the extreme nature of the characters dislike for each other could be polarizing for some people, but if you like hate to love you’ll probably really enjoy this one.

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Maisey Yates lives in rural Oregon with her three children and her husband, whose chiseled jaw and arresting features continue to make her swoon. She feels the epic trek she takes several times a day from her office to her coffee maker is a true example of her pioneer spirit.

In 2009, at the age of twenty-three Maisey sold her first book. Since then it’s been a whirlwind of sexy alpha males and happily ever afters, and she wouldn’t have it any other way. Maisey divides her writing time between dark, passionate category romances  set just about everywhere on earth and light sexy contemporary romances set practically in her back yard. She believes that she clearly has the best job in the world.

Author links | Website | Instagram | Facebook

Happy reading!