Monday, January 16, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?
Welcome to It's Monday! is a weekly event hosted by Book Date to share with others what you've read the past week and are planning to read the next.

New Reading Challenges 
9 of 250

Only finished 3 last week but I'm hoping to double that this week. 

Read Last week


Currently Reading

Once Upon a Zombie by Billy Phillips & Jenny Nissenson
Rest of the week
I didn't get to these last week. I should be able to this week. 
Blood in Iron by J.N. Colon Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren
Dream Mire by Sharman Badgett-Young 

What are you reading? Anyone else hit the holiday slump?

Cover Reveal: Redemption




Title: Redemption
Series: Golden Beach #4
Author: Kim Loraine
Genre: Contemporary Romance/New Adult
Cover Design: Ramona Lockwood
Release Date: February 8, 2017

Blurb

Sparks may fly in the bedroom, but fire always brings destruction.

Golden Beach firefighter, Lieutenant Michael Oliver, has everything he wants — a beautiful wife, a job he loves, and a future that finally looks bright after years of darkness. Until one day a surprise from his past shows up, throwing everything he’d finally recovered from back in his face.

Lena Shirakawa married the man of her dreams in an impulsive Vegas wedding. As a free-spirited and highly sought-after travel photographer, being the wife of a firefighter who wants her to settle down isn’t easy. Especially when her job takes her all over the world for months at a time.

When Lena’s deep-rooted fears take hold, the damage is done and divorce seems the only option. But Michael won't give up, even if it means risking everything to keep her.



Excerpt

Lena Shirakawa swayed in her spot as the unseasonably warm October sun beat down against them. She wiped the beads of sweat from her brow and waited for the models to get into position. 

She heard them as they approached, filling the quiet beach with rowdy banter. Twelve drop-dead gorgeous firefighters from different stations across the Virginia coast filed into the partitioned section of sand and surf. Her heart raced at the sight of the men in uniform—chiseled, well muscled, and confident. 

"Where do you want them?" 

Lena snapped her mouth closed as her assistant waved a handkerchief in her face. 

"I wasn't drooling," she told Hallie, aware of the indignant tone in her voice. 

"It's for your forehead. You're sweating … but now that you mention it—" 

"Shut it, Hal." 

Hallie laughed as she gathered a reflector and started her stroll toward the group. 

"Can you line them up by month? I want a few shots of all of them and then we'll go down the line, January through December." 

"Any particular poses?" 

Lena shook her head and snickered as her gaze fell to the table of props. A few axes, a coiled fire hose, rope, chains, and a bottle of baby oil covered the surface of the table. This was going to be fun. She counted the men as Hallie lined them up and stopped short at eleven. 

"Hal? There's one missing. And where's my truck? I was told we'd have a truck and that I'd get real flames to work with." 

Hallie nodded. "The truck is on the way, along with Mr. December . . . Michael Oliver." She nodded to the pile of driftwood stacked about twenty yards down the beach. "There's your fire." 

Lena cocked an eyebrow and smirked. "I trained you right, didn't I?" 

Hallie chuckled and continued positioning firefighters which turned out to be more difficult than it seemed. They were loud, boisterous, and Lena couldn't stop herself from snapping candid shots as they teased and flirted with her assistant. 

Six of the men were from Station 31, Golden Beach's local firehouse. She knew most of them by reputation alone, and one due to a mistake she'd made a year earlier. 

"Okay, fellas. Line up. Backs to the waves, if you please. Let's go ahead and get your shirts off." Hallie directed them without batting an eye and Lena just stood back and watched. 

She started plotting the next few hours in her head, planning for the best poses, but lost her focus as bare chests, tattoos, and washboard abdominals came into view. 

Stop it. You are a professional. Ogling is not okay.

She snatched the bottle of baby oil and tossed it at Hallie with a wink. 

"Glistening," Lena instructed. 

"Some days this job sucks. Today is not one of them." 

As Hallie offered oil to each of the guys, Lena turned her back, organizing her thoughts and planning the shoot. The waves crashed behind them, and the sun hung low in the sky. All she needed was the damn fire truck and Mr. December. 

The sound of a siren broke through the chatter. Engine 31 rolled down the beach, lights flashing, and Lena rolled her eyes. 

Michael parked the truck and jumped down from the driver's seat, a wide grin on his perfect face. 

"Damn. That man is beautiful." Hallie's breathy whisper echoed Lena's own feelings. He was beautiful. Pouty lips, a chiseled jawline, gentle eyes graced with soft laugh lines. She knew what those lips felt like . . . everywhere. 

"Physical perfection. Too bad he's only pretty on the outside," Lena muttered. 

"I don't know. Might be worth it." 

Lena offered a light shrug and walked over to inspect the truck. 

"Freshly waxed just for you." Michael's deep baritone drew a layer of arousal over her body. 

"Good. You're late," she snapped. 

"You're welcome." 

She eyed him, trying to get past the jaw-dropping good looks and focus on the reason she was here—a calendar for charity. 

"Shirt off, please," she ordered. "Let's see what we've got to work with." 

That had been a bad choice. He stripped off his thin, blue t-shirt and tossed it at her. It smelled of leather and something spicy. She had to force herself not to bring the fabric to her nose and inhale deeply. 

"Do I get your stamp of approval?" He cocked an eyebrow and smirked at her as he flexed his chest. 

She had to clear her throat before she could get her voice to cooperate, then she shrugged. 

"You'll do," she threw over her shoulder as she walked away, gripping her camera tightly and trying to control the shaking of her fingers. 

After a few deep, calming breaths, she got past the sparks of attraction she felt for Michael, and the shoot fell into place. At the end of the night all that remained were the embers of the bonfire and three firefighters, including Michael. They sat around the dying fire, talking and watching the waves. 

"Should we leave?" Hallie asked under her breath. 

Lena shrugged as she continued packing up. Donovan Miller, the newest firefighter at the station, had already taken the truck and borrowed props back to the firehouse. All that was left to do was make sure the flames were extinguished and load the table in the back of her van. 

She tipped the table on its back and started collapsing the legs while Hallie carted a bag up the path to the parking lot. Struggling to gain traction in the sand, Lena lifted the long rectangle at one end and began to pull. 

"Let me help you with that, princess." Michael's voice sent warm tingles down her spine. 

He grabbed the other end of the table and lifted it with ease, grinning as he followed her lead and they made their way to the waiting van. 

Hallie snickered and cast her a knowing glance as she passed the pair on her way back to the beach. "I'll get the boys to help me put out the fire. You don't need to hang around on my account, L." 

She could practically feel his broad smile behind her and she shook her head, fighting a laugh. 

The idea of a night or two tangled in the sheets with a gorgeous man sounded exactly like what she needed. Unfortunately for Michael, she wasn't willing to give him the satisfaction of adding her notch to his bedpost—again. 

As he helped her load the table he brushed his fingers along the exposed skin of her shoulder. She fought off an involuntary shiver, pushing the door closed and turning to face him. 

"So, are we doing this?" His tone was confident as he closed the distance between their bodies—his hips touching hers. 

A wave of need crested over her. It was all she could do to wait for it to recede. 

"Not tonight." She could barely manage a whisper. 

His lips turned down in a playful pout but instead of backing away, he pressed closer, one hand on either side of her face.

"That's not a never."


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Author Bio



Kim Loraine is the author of the “Golden Beach” series, including “Restoration” (2015) and “Renovation” (2015). She started writing at a young age, scribbling down song lyrics, short stories, and poems she was too afraid to share with anyone. Busy working as a music teacher in her Pacific Northwest hometown, it wasn’t until her family of four picked up everything and moved to beautiful Japan that she decided to finally take the plunge and send her characters out into the world. 

The central theme in Kim’s books is self-discovery, whether that is found through taking risks, breaking down walls, or admitting mistakes. Kim likes to write characters that seem like someone you actually know, who find that life is a journey not without its challenges.

When not writing Kim spends her time with her husband, chasing around their crazy kids, exploring Japan, and binge-watching Doctor Who on Netflix.

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Giveaway

Cover Reveal: Gutted




Title: Gutted
Series: Torn #5
Author: A.F. Crowell
Publisher: Boroughs Publishing Group
Genre: Contemporary Romantic Suspense
Release Date: January 31, 2017

Blurb
KILLING THE LIE


Barb and Viper had an explosive relationship from the moment they met. She looked past his MC affiliation and saw through his rough and possessive exterior. Then she fell. Hard. Just as she let down the wall around her heart, he was gone. It's taken her nearly two years to feel human again, and she's barely recovered. 

Cole Ellett, road name Viper, is back. But his lies remain. Never a member of an outlaw MC. Never murdered. Undercover for the Department of Homeland Security, his job forced him to disappear. But now he's back for Barb, who is everything he’s ever desired. No matter that his life is still in danger and that their relationship was like a house built on sand. No matter that she’s locked her heart away for good. He will reignite her spark and bring back the fire that burns only for him. Theirs is a love that will never die.




Excerpt
“Right. Remind me to ask about that later. I’m gonna go try to talk to Barb,” I said as I practically leaped from the chair and bounded up the first and second flight of wooden stairs.

“Good luck,” Jaxon muttered on my way out.

I was going to need all the luck I could get.

Once I reached the master bedroom on the third floor, I looked across the room at the closed white door leading to the bathroom. My heavy boots betrayed my attempt at being quiet. As I stilled, I could hear a low, deep growl coming from the other side of the door.

Fuck. He was in there with her.

“Who’s out there?” She asked through the wooden door.

“Babe, it’s me,” I replied and the growling got a little louder.

“I told Lei I didn’t want to see you. Leave. Me. Alone.”

“You know I’m not gonna do that. I’ve waited almost two years to see you. Hold you. Feel your hair between my fingers. I need you to at least let me try to explain. Please, baby.” Yeah, I was groveling. I would have gotten down on my knees and kissed her feet if that’s what it took. Anything for a chance.

“Leave Cole. There’s nothing you could say to me right now that’ll make me change my mind,” she sobbed and the rift in my chest widened a little more.

“Please, Barbara. I’ll stay out here and explain. You don’t have to see me, just give me a chance. I didn’t have a choice. I was under orders.”

“No, you’re not listening. You don’t get a chance to explain why you left me, or a chance to explain why you allowed me to think that you were dead. You don’t get a fucking chance to tell me why you let me grieve you for a year and eight months. Fuck you, Cole. You don’t get a chance. Now leave me the fuck alone or so help me God, I’ll open this damn door and let the dog out.” The fire in her voice shot straight to my cock. Fuck me, she was hot when she was pissed.

I was quiet for minute and waited for her anger to fade. My girl would get mad fast then soften a little. I knew she was trying to cover.

Even though I couldn’t see the hurt, I could hear it. Her cries and gasps for air damn near killed me. Maybe she did need more time than I was willing to give her.

“I know you’re still there, Cole. Please,” she sniffled as her breath hitched, “please just leave. I can’t deal with you right now.”

Her words were like a sharpened Ka-Bar to the heart. They opened me up and drained every drop of blood coursing through my veins.

In all of my preparation for this day, I never imagined it would be this awful.

She fucking hated me.


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Author Bio

A.F. Crowell lives in Charleston, SC with her husband and two sons. They have two dogs, Diesel, a German Shepherd rescue and Dez, a black Labrador Retriever. She shares her love of books with her children, who have a head start on becoming life-long readers.

Romance fiction hit her radar when her husband forced her to watch Twilight one weekend when they were snowed in. That was it! From there her love grew; Contemporary Romance, Paranormal, YA and Dystopian are her preferred reads.

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Giveaway

Book Blitz: Horribly Marvelous: The Diary of Cyndi Victoria Chase (Part One: Miracle Week) by Troy CLE with Giveaway

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Hello Readers!
Welcome to the Book Blitz for
Horribly Marvelous: The Diary of Cyndi Victoria Chase (Part One: Miracle Week) by Troy CLE!

This book is part of the Marvelous World series published by Simon and Schuster and Random House Listening Library.
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!

hmdvccover

Cyndi Victoria Chase’s junior year was supposed to be about fun and getting into college while desperately dodging the pitfalls of being awkward and painfully self-conscious. All of that was derailed when the massacre of two of her Alonis Academy classmates marked the beginning of a local epidemic. That did not sit well with Cyndi, who is a highly imaginative girl living in her own “Naturally Augmented Reality” where she can flawlessly detect when someone is lying and see people’s words come to life right in front of her eyes. She’ll discover that she’s up against a vicious trans-dimensional and intergalactic threat that has dropped chaos upon her life, school, and town. Cyndi is Cyndi and will always be compelled to fight back; her powerful foes better be prepared for a battle that will become historic throughout the galaxy.
This book is part of the Marvelous World series published by Simon and Schuster and Random House Listening Library.
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Horribly Marvelous: The Diary of Cyndi Victoria Chase (Part One: Miracle Week) 
by Troy CLE 
Publication Date: November 29, 2016
Available for Purchase: AMAZON

About-the-Author2
Troy CLE is the author of the Horribly Marvelous and Marvelous World book series (Simon & Schuster / Random House Listening Library Audio) along with being the creator of Marvelous World University. He is a graduate of New York University (BA American Literature and English, MS Digital Design) and a highly experienced lecturer who has spoken Harvard, UCLA, Colorado College and many other well know and respected institutions.
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Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!

Release Blitz: Back to Country




Title: Back to Country
Series: Country Love #4
Author: Vicki Green
Genre: Contemporary Romantic Suspense
Release Date: January 16, 2017

Blurb

Success is hard work,
Finding the right woman is even harder,

Nash Harris comes from a good family and wealth. His pa had one of the best horse breeding ranches in Texas. After Pa died, Nash felt there were too many memories there for him to stay. He sold the ranch and moved to Montana, finding the perfect place to start over. He made friends quickly but there’s one woman who catches his eye that won’t give him the time of day. He may just have to up his game.

Tina Brogdon. She’s your typical overzealous girl, yet beneath it all she’s shy around guys. After moving to Montana to follow her bestie, she finds her new hometown a wonderful place to begin her young life. Tina has met a few hot and sexy men here and even in the next town over but none of them give her the ‘spark’ she’s looking for. Then a fiery redhead arrives and her panties go up in flames. Her non filter is normal but now she’s a bumbling idiot whenever he is near.



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Free in Kindle Unlimited


Excerpt
“All I know is – I love you. I know what I feel, darlin’. You’re in my every wakin’ thought. And when I close my eyes, you’re right there. When I hold you while you sleep, my life is complete, my heart is full. And when you’re not, I ‘bout go crazy until you’re in my arms again. We may not know each other completely but how will we learn about each other if we’re not together?” Wetness forms in her eyes. “When you sleep, I know you drool a little, right in the corner of your mouth.” She purses her lips, tryin’ not to laugh. “I know that when you laugh really hard you let out the most fuckin’ adorable snort.” She closes her eyes. A tear slowly rolls down her cheek. I hold her hand tighter. “I know your eyes change from a beautiful shade of green to a gorgeous shade of blue dependin’ on what you’re wearin’ and your face scrunches up when you’re confused. I love everythin’ about you.”

Nash

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Author Bio
Best selling Author of Romance and Romance Suspense, Vicki lives in Kansas with her husband and two boys as well as their 3 dogs that rule their house. She loves spending time with her family and furbabies as well as reading.

Look for more exciting romance adventures in the future.

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Release Blitz: Playing the Game




Title: Playing the Game
Series: A Beautiful Game #1
Author: Karen Frances
Genre: Romance
Release Date: January 16, 2017

Blurb
International football star Fletcher Adams always has an eye on the ladies and, more often than not, one on each arm. The sexy football pin-up knows he needs to make changes in his life, but changes don’t come easily. It’s time to head home to Scotland, away from everything that distracts him, and concentrate on Playing the Game.

Jessica Taylor, a young ambitious business woman, has her whole life mapped out. With her own home, a boyfriend, and a baby on the way, her life is moving along according to plan. When the unimaginable happens, her world crashes down and the happy life she had is plunged into darkness.

A meeting of chance brings together two very different people from different worlds. Both are trying to move forward from pasts that haunt them. While Jessica is trying to pick up the pieces of her shattered life, Fletcher is trying to prove he’s calmed his wild ways and is ready to be the man to help piece her heart back together. Will Fletcher Adams be the right man to save her, or will she be the one to save him?



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Excerpt

Fletcher 

“You’re Fletcher, aren’t you?” a tall blonde with legs that go on for miles asks, resting her hand on my shoulder. Logan smiles with a look that says you’ve pulled tonight. She is pretty tidy looking, but has overdone it in the make-up department. I rake my eyes in appreciation over her body. Curves in all the right places, and those tits, bloody hell…I could have a lot 

of fun with those as I slide between them, but of course, they’re probably fake. 

“Yeah,” I say, even though I shouldn’t, but I’m sure the rest of the guys are loving the female attention they’re getting. “Drinks all around,” I call out. 

The bartender smiles as he looks at our company. Even he has an idea of how tonight will end.

The blonde tells me her name, but I don’t take any notice. I don’t want to remember her name in the morning, or whenever I creep out of her bed. Makes it easier that way. As the alcohol flows freely, the blonde keeps trying to persuade me to get on the dance floor with her. She seems the type that wouldn’t mind putting on one hell of a floor show. I might be on the drunk side now, but I’m still cautious. I’ve definitely learned my lesson over the years; you just never know who is lurking around, ready to get pictures. She can do what she wants for me in private later on, though.


Author Bio
Karen Frances currently lives just outside Glasgow, Scotland, with her husband, five children and two dogs, although she does dream of living somewhere warm and sunny. Her days are spent helping her husband run their busy family business. She spends some of her free time trying to keep fit and prepare healthy meals for her family, when their busy schedules allow them to sit down at meal times together. The rest of her free time she uses to plot and write and occasionally read.

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