Monday, August 31, 2015

The Day the Crayon's Came Home by Drew Daywalt, Illustrated by Oliver Jeffers - A Mom Monday Review

A Mom Monday Review:

Author: Drew Daywalt, Illustrator: Oliver Jeffers
Publication Date:  18 August 2015
Publisher: Philomel Books
Series:  Crayons, book 2
Genre:  Children's Picture Book
Age Recommendation: 4 and up
Rating: 5 Stars

Book Description:

I'm not sure what it is about this kid Duncan, but his crayons sure are a colorful bunch of characters! Having soothed the hurt feelings of one group who threatened to quit, Duncan now faces a whole new group of crayons asking to be rescued. From Maroon Crayon, who was lost beneath the sofa cushions and then broken in two after Dad sat on him; to poor Turquoise, whose head is now stuck to one of Duncan's stinky socks after they both ended up in the dryer together; to Pea Green, who knows darn well that no kid likes peas and who ran away—each and every crayon has a woeful tale to tell and a plea to be brought home to the crayon box.

My Review:

I am so in love with this sequel to the book The Day the Crayons Quit.  The Day the Crayons came home has a similar feel to the first book, but I found it to be even more witty and clever.  I loved the attitude of each crayon, particularly Pea-Green crayon, AKA Esteban and Neon Red Crayon.  I couldn't help but feel a bit bad for our dear friend Esteban as his plans to run away keep hitting road blocks and there are so many laugh out loud moments as Neon Red Crayon travels the 'world'.  

All of the crayons take us on a humorous adventure as they make their way back home to Duncan.  The illustrations by Oliver Jeffers are fabulous, we loved the glow-in-the-dark page most, but each page has so much to look at.  The illustrations are simplistic enough for the youngest reader, but full of little detailed that even the oldest readers will find something to love.  

I also loved that with each of these crayons personalities you as the reader can find one of them to connect with.  I am most definitely a Neon Red Crayon, my oldest daughter said she would be the pencil because they are the simplest and she would rather write than draw and my youngest couldn't decide between Rainbow Crayon (who makes a guest appearance) or Esteban (formerly known as Pea-Green Crayon).  Sufficed to say you can tell we had a great time reading this book.  Lots of laughter, plotting (for what the crayons do next), and smiles!  

This is a fantastic book for anyone really, I swear I enjoyed it as much if not more than my 9 and 6 year old daughters.  Every Pre-K through 3rd grade (at the least) should have a copy of this book (and the first one) on their class room shelves...if you're teacher doesn't have it let me suggest it as a wonderful teacher appreciation gift!  This is a must have book for any home library as well, it will get read over and over and bring lots of wonderful laughter into your home!


Get The Day the Crayons Quit 

Ever since his childhood in one of Ohio’s most haunted houses, writer director Drew Daywalt has been writing escapist fantasy and building worlds of his own. With a degree in Creative Writing, and a concentration in Children’s Literature from Emerson College in Boston, Daywalt set off to Hollywood where he spent years writing for Disney and Universal on such beloved shows as Timon & Pumba, Buzz Lightyear, and Woody Woodpecker, and where his animated series The Wacky World of Tex Avery garnered an Emmy nomination. 

His first trip into live action landed him studio screenwriting and feature film directing work with such Hollywood luminaries as Quentin Tarrantino, Lawrence Bender, Tony Scott, Brett Ratner and Jerry Bruckheimer.

From figurative painting and installation to illustration and picture-book making, his work has been exhibited in New York, Dublin, London, Sydney, Washington DC, Belfast and elsewhere.
A co-founder of the art collective OAR, their exhibitions include 9 days in Belfast, book and the award winning BUILDING.
Illustration clients include Orange UK, Lavazza, Sony PSP, RCA Records, Starbucks, Candy, the Vacuum and Her Royal Majesty the Queen of England.
HarperCollins UK and Penguin USA publish his picture books, including the award-winning Lost and Found and The Incredible Book Eating Boy.

There has always been a strong undercurrent of narrative behind Jeffers's work, but his current interest in making art lies in the anomaly between logical and emotional thinking.
While striving to find a harmonious balance between form and content, Jeffers is curious about the opposing means by which the world he lives in can be assessed. To explore this he has been drawing parallels between the arts and sciences, as in his recent solo show, Additional Information (exhibited December 2006, in Hill St Belfast), in which figurative oil paintings were over laid with mathematical equations.

Friday, August 28, 2015

An Alpha's Choice by Carrie Ann Ryan - Review and Giveaway

Author: Carrie Ann Ryan
Publication Date:  18 August, 2015
Publisher: Fated Desires Publishing
Series:  Talon Pack, book 2
Genre:  Paranormal Romance, Shifter
Age Recommendation: 18 and up
Rating: 4 Stars
~ I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review ~ 

Book Description:

Brynn Brentwood has spent the whole of her life protecting the Talon Pack through terrors only she will ever know. She’s never asked for more in life other than to live to take her next breath and to ensure her family is safe. Regardless of her selfless wishes and the atrocities the former Alpha committed, she has always known that fate would provide for her as it had countless others. Fate is what has carried her through with one exception—upon meeting the one wolf who could be hers, he doesn’t feel their bond.

Finn Jamenson has been broken more than once, left beaten and half dead—and that was before he was an adult and Heir of the Redwood Pack. When called upon to work with their allies, the Talons, he finds himself intrigued with a woman who his wolf doesn’t claim as his own. Though he knows there could be something there, he refuses to tempt himself with a wolf who could never be his when his own mate could waiting for him.

The world changed in a blink of time and now the two wolves must fight as one—ignoring the burning temptation between them—when their people are threatened. With one wrong move, their homes could be destroyed and its up to Finn and Brynn to save them all…if only they could save themselves.

My Review:

"They'd come for her family, her pack.  They'd come for her."

The world knows, they know that Shifters exist.  Will they accept that knowledge, can they accept the Shifters, or is a battle looming between Shifters and Humans and if so is there any way to stop it.  

After the fight within the Talon pack that lead to humans discovering that Shifters were and had been living among them the world is on edge.  Humans are scared and Shifters simply want to be left to live in the comparative peace that they had been until that tragic day when a Talon Pack member shifted on live TV.  

Brynn, sister to Talon Pack Alpha Ryder has been the face of her pack for the past year.  She's been trying to foster a sense of normalcy between humans and shifters, but she knows deep down it isn't working.  She can feel the humans unease and she and other Shifters no longer feel safe.  She's lived a life most humans (and shifters) can only imagine.  The daughter of a tyrannical and abusive father, the niece of an unstable uncle, and she holds a painful secret in her heart that is slowly tearing her apart.  

Finn Jameson is the Heir from Talon's rival  pack, the Redwoods.  An Alpha on par with Brynn's own Alpha strength.  He and his peers are beginning to take over the pack hierarchy and while he knows becoming the pack Alpha is his destiny and the path he wants to take he knows that there is something not quite right between he and his wolf.  Brought back from the brink of death as a child, his connection between he and his wolf have since been muted.  He doesn't feel the tug from his wolf, the voice, and feelings that he knows other Shifters feel, but he doesn't know just how much he is missing because of it.  

Thrown together by the two packs to represent them out in human society Finn finds himself fighting his human sides attraction to Brynn, knowing that his wolf has no mating feelings toward her and he finds himself constantly fighting Brynn but he has no idea why.  Why does she hate him, what did he ever do but try and be nice to her, try to be friends?  Bryan on the other hand knows something that Finn doesn't and it is eating away at her and having to spend time with him is beginning to break her down.  

I really enjoyed the dynamic between these two the push and pull was heartfelt and realistic.  Sometimes when you get a book where a couple is fighting the draw between them it can get overly frustrating but Carrie Ann Ryan manages to make this pull and push between these two characters simple, heartbreaking, and beautiful.  You just want so badly for both of these broken people to find their happiness and to find their love.  

I also really enjoy a common theme to Carrie Ann Ryan's pack novels and that is how much these families love one another.  It isn't simply about the love between two destined mates, it is the love of entire families and to some extent their entire packs.  I love how these characters will do anything to save each other and how they will come together in the most beautiful moments of strength just to help hold up one of their own while they are breaking apart.  

The storyline here is fantastic.  I like the idea of the shifter packs and humans having to come together to find common ground.  It could get overly complicated but Carrie manages to pull it off effortlessly.  Although there are machinations going on in the background and we don't have full answers yet, you aren't left hanging and confused.  I liked that even though this book is part of a series, and I of course suggest reading the series in order, you won't be lost at all if you don't  I can see that will likely not be the case as we get more books and the plot becomes thicker but for now, if this is your first Carrie Ann Ryan book you won't be lost or disappointed.  

The story of Brynn and Finn is truly and beautiful, heartbreaking at times, emotional story.  Fans of Shifter books, suspense, paranormal romance will enjoy this story.  This is the second book in the series but like I said earlier don't shy away from this one if it is the first book of Carrie's that you will read.  I am really looking forward to book three!  


New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Carrie Ann Ryan never thought she’d be a writer. Not really. No, she loved math and science and even went on to graduate school in chemistry. Yes, she read as a kid and devoured teen fiction and Harry Potter, but it wasn’t until someone handed her a romance book in her late teens that she realized that there was something out there just for her. When another author suggested she use the voices in her head for good and not evil, The Redwood Pack and all her other stories were born.

Carrie Ann is a bestselling author of over twenty novels and novellas and has so much more on her mind (and on her spreadsheets *grins*) that she isn’t planning on giving up her dream anytime soon.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Forgetting August by J.L. Berg - Cover Reveal and Giveaway

We're so excited to help share the absolutely stunning cover of FORGETTING AUGUST with you! Take a look:


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USA Today bestselling author J.L Berg’s FORGETTING AUGUST, in which a woman, who started over, never expected her world to suddenly be turned upside down by the reawakening of the one man who could destroy it all, releases as an e-book in December 2015. More information coming soon!

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Want to be one of the first people to read FORGETTING AUGUST? Enter below for a chance to be one of the first people to get an ARC when they're available!

About J.L. Berg

J.L. Berg is the USA Today bestselling author of the Ready Series. She is a California native living in the beautiful state of historic Virginia. Married to her high school sweetheart, they have two beautiful girls that drive them batty on a daily basis. When she's not writing, you will find her with her nose stuck in a romance novel, in a yoga studio or devouring anything chocolate. J.L. Berg is represented by Jill Marsal of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency, LLC.

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Dragon King by Donna Grant - Review and Excerpt

Dragon King Review & Excerpt Tour banner

I am so happy to help bring you the Review & Excerpt Tour for Donna Grant's DRAGON KING! 

DRAGON KING is a novella in Donna's Dark Kings Series brought to you by the team at 1001 Dark Nights! 

Grab your copy today!


 Amazon eBook ~ Amazon Paperback ~ GoodReads

Book Description:

A Dark Kings Novella: 

A Woman on a Mission 

Grace Clark has always done things safe. She's never colored outside of the law, but she has a book due and has found the perfect spot to break through her writer's block. Or so she thinks. Right up until Arian suddenly appears and tries to force her away from the mountain. Unaware of the war she just stumbled into, Grace doesn't just discover the perfect place to write, she finds Arian—the most gorgeous, enticing, mysterious man she's ever met.

 A King with a Purpose 

Arian is a Dragon King who has slept away centuries in his cave. Recently woken, he's about to leave his mountain to join his brethren in a war when he's alerted that someone has crossed onto Dreagan. He's ready to fight . . . until he sees the woman. She's innocent and mortal—and she sets his blood aflame. He recognizes the danger approaching her just as the dragon within him demands he claim her for his own...    
My Review:

I love these 1,001 Dark Nights Novellas.  I love that for fans of a particular series we can get a small glimpse back into the worlds we love while we wait on the next full length novel.  I love that for fans who are new to a series you get to discover so many new authors and books with out feeling like you have no clue what is going on, or have moments spoiled for you.  These novellas are both a perfect introduction and a fantastic continuation by the authors we love most.  

Dark King is no different.  I have happily read all the books in this series so far.  Donna Grant is by far one of my favorite Paranormal (Historical) Romance Authors.  For fans that love this series as much as I do you will not be disappointed in this book and for new fans you are going to want to run out and start the series right away.  

Arian has been asleep for centuries but with the latest developments in the war between the Dark Fae and both known and unknown enemies King of Kings, Constantine has begun to wake all the Dragon Kings to assist in the coming turmoil.  As Arian slowly comes back to the world his hidden (and spelled) sanctuary is compromised by a human woman who is about to turn everything on it's head.  

I loved that Grace is an author.  It was so fun to imagine Donna in this role of hunting down the perfect place to escape and write, only to stumble into a world she could never fathom existed. I can totally see her stressing about being behind on a deadline, panicked that her contract is going to be cancelled and then having everything come to a halt when a handsome, NAKED, incredibly 'cut' man comes waltzing up to her in what she assumed was a deserted cave in the middle of no where.  Doesn't that just make you grin like the crazy book reader you are?   (Just me?  Okay, then...never mind, haha)

The chemistry between these two is wonderful, of course it is going to be a bit of insta-love but in this type of series that is not uncommon, it's a Mate thing and then add to it that this is a novella it all happens fairly quickly.  Donna does a fantastic job of not making anything feel rushed though.  There is a natural progression that goes along with the storyline in previous books.  I didn't feel like even though this was a novella that I was truly missing out on anything, although I of course would have loved for the book to have been full length, simply because I can't get enough of the Dragon Kings.  

Donna also nicely continues on in the vein of making us all question and not so much like Con.  Which I know is leading us up to the explosive book that will be his.  The last several books in this series have been an absolute tease when it comes to Con's storyline and we are all getting anxious.  I also love that while we get a bit more of Con and this build-up, his issues don't take anything away from Grace and Arian story.  Some books have the unfortunate happening where you are so taken in with the story of another character and the wait for their book that you begin to loose the characters in the books that are out now, but Donna manages to make us all crave answers when it comes to Constantine without pushing aside the current Hero and Heroine.  

Don't be afraid that you will find yourself lost, confused, or ruined for the other books in the series if you have not read any of them before.  This could easily come out as a standalone.  It gives you background and a new story that intermixes with out taking anything away from the rest of the books.  Any fans of Paranormal Romance will thoroughly enjoy this series.  If you do decide to read the series you can start with book one in Dragon Kings, but I would like to suggest going all the way back to Donna Grant's Dark Sword series.  No, you won't miss anything if you don't but the books all slightly weave together and in the end they are all so worth the read!  



Grace knew her knees were going to give out at any moment. She didn’t recall why she had woken, only that she had. With the rain no longer falling, she wanted to see how wet it was. Only she saw two men climbing the mountain.

The next thing she knew, a large form dropped from the sky, only to go back up again the next moment. She gaped in horror when she saw the turquoise dragon burn one of the men.

Before that truly registered in her mind, things got stranger. The remaining man threw what looked like a large bubble at the dragon.

“What the hell,” she murmured.

Was she really seeing a dragon? A massive beast that was as beautiful to behold as it was terrifying.

“Dragons aren’t real. And yet, there’s one. Right there. Right in front of me.”

More bubbles hit the dragon. It must’ve hurt because the dragon spun around and flew back to the man.

Only to land on the side of the mountain.

Grace gawked at the immense width and breadth of the dragon’s turquoise wings as he spread them out. The scales fairly gleamed in the morning sun, shining brilliantly like metal.

The dragon had two short brow horns and another short horn atop its nose. The head and body were so huge she could barely grasp it, and the tail extended far behind the dragon, twitching as if waiting to be used as a weapon.

Suddenly, the dragon’s black eyes turned to her. She froze in fear, unable to move. The last thing she wanted was to bring the dragon’s attention to her. She didn’t want to get eaten.

What was that old expression? Don’t anger a dragon because you are crunchy.

Well, she didn’t want to anger this dragon. She just wanted to go back to the B&B, get some sleep, and then check herself into a mental institution because she was obviously losing her mind if she was seeing dragons.

The dragon’s head snapped back to the man, a low rumble coming from its chest. Grace told herself to go back inside the cave and find Arian, but she still couldn’t move.

Whether it was from fear or curiosity, she wasn’t sure.

But she remained to see what would happen. And as the man began to throw more bubbles at the dragon, she was glad she did.

The dragon was a large target. Even when the dragon knocked the man sideways with its wing, he got back on his feet. As the sun rose higher, Grace got a better look at the man. His short black hair was liberally laced with thick, silver strands.

Everything was odd about the entire scene, from the man to the dragon. It had to be a dream. There was no other explanation for such things.

The man blasted the dragon with several bubbles in a row, and to her shock, Grace watched the dragon disappear in a blink. And in its place was none other than Arian.


About Donna Grant: Donna Grant is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the sizzling Dark King series featuring dragons, immortal Highlanders, and the Fae. She was born and raised in Texas but loves to travel. Her adventures have taken her throughout the United States as well as to Jamaica, Mexico, and Scotland. Growing up on the Texas/Louisiana border, Donna’s Cajun side of the family taught her the “spicy” side of life while her Texas roots gave her two-steppin’ and bareback riding. Despite deadlines and voracious reading, Donna still manages to keep up with her two children, four cats, and one long haired Chihuahua.  

Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Author Goodreads

DRAGON KING – Review & Excerpt Tour Schedule:
August 26th
Penny for My Thoughts – Review
JB's Book Obsession – Excerpt
She Hearts Books – Review
Pages Abound – Excerpt
August 27th
Read Your Writes – Excerpt
Reads All the Books – Review & Excerpt
Booklover4lifeblog – Excerpt
21st Century Once Upon A Times – Review & Excerpt
August 28th
What Is That Book About – Excerpt
Oh My Shelves – Excerpt
I can't help where my mind goes – Review
My Golden Reads – Review & Excerpt
August 29th
Ali's Reviews and Morr – Review & Excerpt
Reading Between the Wines Book Club – Excerpt
Becky on Books – Review & Excerpt
Oh My Growing TBR – Excerpt
August 30th
Adventures in Writing – Excerpt
Little Read Riding Hood – Review & Excerpt
Books That Hook – Review
Jen's Reading Obsession – Excerpt
August 31st
Romancing the Readers – Review
SofiaLovesReading – Review
Home Is Where the Wine Is Book Blog – Review
September 1st
Read-Love-Blog – Excerpt
Romance Bytes – Excerpt
Literary Misfit – Review & Excerpt
Books and Warpaint – Review & Excerpt
September 2nd
Boundless Book Reviews – Review & Excerpt
Love Affair With Fiction – Excerpt
Kelsey's Corner Time – Review
The Book Disciple – Excerpt
September 3rd
Revenge of the Feels – Review & Excerpt
Roxy's Reviews – Excerpt
Reading in Pajamas – Review & Excerpt
My World of Books – Review
September 4th
Once Upon An Alpha – Review
Confessions of a Bookfreak – Review
Sultry, Steamy Reading – Review
Amour's Books – Review & Excerpt
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RIP by Rachel Van Dyken - Cover Reveal

On OCTOBER 20 Rachel Van Dyken brings you Rip a complete stand alone novel that fans of the Eagle Elite series will devour! With twists and turns you won't see coming, this dark romantic suspense will keep you on your toes and leave you screaming for more.

Book Description:

Pretty things aren't meant to be broken.
But I broke her, and now we both have to pay the price.
I'm her nightmare.
I'm her savior.
And now that I have her signature on an ironclad contract, I own her body and soul.
She doesn't remember me.
She will.
It's inevitable.
Because as much as I know I need to stay away, for fear of unlocking the memories I helped her father bury--I can't.
She was the apple in the Garden, dangled in front of me, her core so tempting and sweet. A voice whispered. Just. One. Bite.
I bit.
I tasted.
I fell.

Welcome to the world of the Russian mafia, where death, is your only future.

Rachel Van Dyken is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today Bestselling author of regency and contemporary romances. When she's not writing you can find her drinking coffee at Starbucks and plotting her next book while watching The Bachelor.
She keeps her home in Idaho with her Husband, adorable son, and two snoring boxers! She loves to hear from readers!
Want to be kept up to date on new releases? Text MAFIA to 66866!
You can connect with her on Facebook  or join her fan group Rachel's New Rockin Readers. Her website is 

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Breakout by Ann Aguirre - Release Week Blitz and Giveaway

BREAKOUT - RWB -banner

I am happy to help bring you the Release Week Blitz for Ann Aguirre's BREAKOUT! 

BREAKOUT is an Adult Romantic Science Fiction novel set in the Jax Universe and is a part of Ann Aguirre’s Dred Chronicles, published through Ace

Grab your copy of BREAKOUT today!

  BREAKOUT - cover

Amazon ~ Barnes&Noble ~ BAM ~ Indiebound ~ Vroman’s ~ Book Depository ~ iBooks

 Book Description:

  All hell is breaking loose in the edge-of-your-seat follow-up to Havoc and Perdition fromNew York Times bestselling author Ann Aguirre…

The prison ship Perdition has become a post-battle charnel house with only a handful of Dred’s soldiers still standing and now being hunted by Silence’s trained tongueless assassins. Forging an uneasy alliance with mercenary commander Vost—who is their only chance at escape—the Dread Queen will do whatever it takes to end her life sentence on Perdition and keep the survivors alive long enough to cobble together a transport capable of getting them off station. If Dred and her crew can win the deadly game of cat and mouse, the payoff is not only life but freedom—a prize sweeter than their wildest dreams. Yet the sadistic Silence would rather destroy Perdition than let a single soul slip from her grasp… 

  Praise for the Dred Chronicles: "There's so much action, so much adventure, and more than that, it's great writing."—USA Today "SiranthaJax fans may be intrigued to see what befell Jael after his ill-considered actions there, and new lead Dred is a strong linchpin for a promising new series."—Publishers Weekly "Spectacularly and spell-bindingly perfect with high octane action that keeps you on the edge of your seat and a romance that is surprisingly sweet and tender in a harsh and unforiving setting...This is honestly one of the best SF romance series I have read." —Book Pushers  

And don’t miss the previous books in the Dred Chronicles!





      Author PhotoAbout Ann Aguirre: Ann Aguirre is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling author and RITA winner with a degree in English Literature; before she began writing full time, she was a clown, a clerk, a voice actress, and a savior of stray kittens, not necessarily in that order. She grew up in a yellow house across from a cornfield, but now she lives in sunny Mexico with her husband, children, and various pets. Ann likes books, emo music, action movies, and she writes all kinds of genre fiction for adults and teens, published with Harlequin, Macmillan, and Penguin, among others.      

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Tough Love by Lori Foster - Release Week Blitz and Giveaway

TOUGH LOVE - RDL banner  

I am absolutely thrilled to help bring you the Release Week Blitz for Lori Foster's TOUGH LOVE! 

TOUGH LOVE is a Contemporary Romance and is a part of Lori Foster’s Ultimate Series, published by Harlequin HQN. 

Grab your copy today! And if you haven't before, make sure you grab the other books in this fantastic series!

  Tough Love - cover

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Book Description:

  She's playing hard to get…to win the MMA fighter of her ultimate fantasies in a sultry new novel from New York Times bestselling author Lori Foster 

Vanity Baker loves a good, clean match, but she's not above playing a little dirty. She's wanted Stack "The Wolf" Hannigan from day one. Seems as though the best way to corral the famously commitment-phobic fighter is to insist on keeping it casual. And her plan works—deliciously well—until Stack's past steps out of the shadows. Stack learned early to stay free of attachments. But with sexy, forthright Vanity, he's the one always left wanting more. Then his troublemaking family comes back into the picture, threatening everything Stack cares about—Vanity included. Suddenly he realizes they're much more than friends with benefits. He's ready to go to the mat for her…but will it be in time to protect the woman who's tamed him for good?

  Praise for TOUGH LOVE: “Foster brings her signature blend of heat and sweet to her addictive third Ultimate martial arts contemporary. Foster ably tosses out red herrings and also seamlessly lays the foundation for the next book in this series. This luscious tale will appeal to Foster’s legion of fans and attract new ones—even those who aren’t fans of professional fighting.”- Publishers Weekly  

       young couple in love, kissing, studio shot, back light   


Brushing his thumb over her knuckles, he asked gently, “Nervous, then?”

She shook her head. “No.”

“You’re shaking.”

Lifting his hand to her mouth, she lightly bit a knuckle, then kissed the spot. Gaze sincere, she whispered, “Because I’m eager.”

Well, hell. She’d just done it again, made him taut with her words. Needing to explain to her, just in case he jumped the gun, he said, “The first time…”

“Fast and hard,” she finished for him. “I know.” Her smile slipped into place even as her eyes darkened and her voice went all breathy. “It’ll be worth it if I get to watch you. I’ve been thinking about that forever.”


“After that,” she murmured, “then it can be my turn.”

Trying to give a little more room to his growing erection, Stack stretched out one leg. If she kept that up, he wouldn’t make it to her place. Hell, he was so close to losing it, the idea of pulling over for a quickie in the car appealed in a big way. It should have embarrassed him, how she stole his control. But knowing Vanity pushed him on purpose only made him more determined to blow her mind with sex.

Reaching for long-lost patience, he drew in a deep breath and put both hands back on the steering wheel. “You’re playing with fire. You know that, right?”

“I’m playing with you, Stack Hannigan, and it’s the most fun I’ve had in a very long time.”

He liked her like this, so open about what she wanted—namely, him. “Like I said before, you’ll pay for the play.”

“I’m hopeful.” She laughed, and even that turned him on.

Vanity was the one of the sexiest women he’d ever known, but she was also real. Bold. He didn’t have to wonder at her thoughts, because she spelled out what she wanted and how she wanted it.

She also made it clear that their time together had a short time frame, and after they’d settled the lust, she fully expected him to mosey on out of her life.

Should’ve been perfect, only…it nettled him that she didn’t push for more.

Both of them now silent, he turned a corner onto a dark street—and immediately saw the collision. Two vehicles, one in a ditch, the other overturned. Headlights cut the dark of the night at odd angles. Even as Stack slowed his car, searching the scene, the overturned car ignited and flames licked into the air.

“Oh, my God.” Vanity sat forward to stare. “There!” She pointed to the side of one car. “There’s a body!”

Stack jerked the car to the curb, slammed it into park and released his seat belt at the same time. “Call 911.”

She already had her purse in her hands, digging through it. “Be careful,” she called after him as he hurriedly left the car.

He’d only taken one step when Stack heard a woman’s weak screams.

TOUGH LOVE is part of the Ultimate series. Check out all the books in the Ultimate series today!

Ultimate Novels- cover banner

Hard Knocks

No Limits

Holding Strong

Tough Love

Fighting Dirty

      Close- up of woman kissing neck of man in bed    

  Author Photo
About Lori Foster: Since first publishing in January 1996, Lori Foster has become a USA Today, Publisher’s Weekly and New York Times bestselling author. Lori has published through a variety of houses, including Kensington, St. Martin’s, Harlequin, Silhouette, Samhain, and Berkley/Jove. She is currently published with HQN. Lori hosts a very special annual “Reader & Author” event in West Chester, Ohio. Proceeds from the event have benefited many worthy causes, including the Hamilton County YWCA Battered Women’s Shelter, the Animal Adoption Foundation, The Conductive Learning Center for children with spina bifida and cerebral palsy, and The One Way Farm, Children’s Home. Each year Lori donates all proceeds from one book to charity. You can see the benefit romance books here: 


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Thursday, August 20, 2015

Into the Dangerous World by Julie Chibbaro - Review and Giveaway

Author: Julie Chibbaro, Illustrations by JM Superville Sovak
Publication Date:  18 August, 2015
Publisher: Viking/Penguin
Genre:  Young Adult Fiction
Age Recommendation: 14 and up
Rating: 4 Stars
~ I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review ~ 

Book Description:
Ror lives to draw—to her, it’s like breathing; it’s how she understands life. Raised on a Staten Island commune, she’s never attended a day of school, and knows little of the outside world. When her paranoid father burns down the commune with himself inside, Ror, her mother, and sister end up in a homeless residence in Manhattan. There, she runs into trouble—and love—with Trey, the leader of Noise Ink, a graffiti crew.  On the city’s streets, and in its museums and galleries, Ror finds herself pulled in different directions. Her father wanted her to make classic art. Noise Ink insists she stay within their lines. Her art teacher urges her to go to college. But what does she want? Ror’s soul-searching—expressed in remarkable drawings and sharp-edged prose, set in the gritty Manhattan of 1984—is cinematic in its scope, and its seamless blend of text and art makes Into the Dangerous World a groundbreaking event in young adult fiction.

My Review:
This is a rather difficult book for me to review because it is so far out of my realm of expectancy and has such an amazingly personal feel to it that I almost feel like reviewing this book is the equivalent of telling another person how I feel about all their life choices as a teenager.    
One thing I did not realize going into this book is the era in which it covers.  This is the era of my childhood (although, and I have to admit this to make myself feel better, I was not quite a teenager during this time), this was a time that our society found itself in a bit of an upheaval.  The Vietnam War had only 'ended' ten years prior to the stories timeline, We were on the cusp of the Cold War, the idealism of the 60's and 70's had come seemingly to a screeching halt as people struggled to find a new identity in a post wartime world where government, inflation, conservatism, and materialism had begun to explode.  This is a time where a generation of teens were lost in the fray, trying to find their own places as they began to mature and come into themselves, a time where a lost generation of children were trying to fight the changes around them and find their voices.  

All that being said...Teens of today's world, do not set this book aside as the book of your parents generation.  Do not think that this is a story that won't resonate with you because it came from a time before you were a blip in the atmosphere.  Do not think that because this book is as much a history book as it is a fiction story that you won't find it interesting because in each of these things you would find yourself mistaken.  This book is a book that can and will open your eyes to the world that was being shaped while your parents were your age now.  This is a book about self discovery, about fears, and desires.  A book about finding your place in this huge machine of a world, of standing your ground, taking chances, and becoming the person you are meant to be.  This is a book that will surely grab your attention and get you asking questions of your teachers and parents.  It will remind you that  while in each generation we feel like we are the only ones, that no one could ever feel the way we do, or struggle the way you do, YOU are not alone.  We may not all travel the same path but we have all been at the same point sometime in our lives...simply said, your parents understand you more than you may ever realize.  

Aurora (Ror) is quite the conundrum for me, as much as I think she is for herself actually.  She grew up in a faltering commune living by the ideals her father (Dado) set forth and attempted to foster.  After tragedy strikes the family, Ror, her mother, and her older sister are forced to now rely on a system which they had shunned, a system which is fundamentally broken and leaves them struggling to survive in the harsh world of New York City's poverty.  She is thrown in to the public school system as a sophomore who is artistically inclined, been burned badly enough that she feels the need to cover her head with knit caps, was raised and home schooled in a 'hippie' commune, and taught to fear 'the man'.  This would be a Dangerous World to any teenager, a world in which they don't fit in, are labeled, and if not outright bullied then ignored, but this is the world she now has to find her own place in and she begins to do that through her art.  

I really would have loved to have more of her story.  I would not say that the book ended abruptly but to feel as though you have travelled this incredible journey of self discovery with Ror and never know what happens to her as she goes out 'Into the Dangerous World' was a bit of a downer.  I know we should all take that moment to use our own imaginations and see her future through our own eyes, but man I would have liked to have heard it from the author, at least in a epilogue. I think the reasoning is because as I said in the beginning of this review, I felt like this was a truly personal story in many ways and I need to know how it ended from their eyes because I could simply not do it justice.  

Readers will love the art in the book, it has a bit of a graphic novel vibe to it, which truly just enhances the story being told.  It makes it so much easier to visualize everything Ror and the NoiseInk Crew do, especially for readers like myself who are not artistically inclined, ha.  I have to admit to googling 'Fire Pop' and I am still not certain I know exactly what that artistic term means, although I am going with my best guess, haha.  I am a HUGE fan of e-readers as many of you know and I did read this book as an e-copy but I think in this case this is a definite hard copy kind of book.  I think having the ability to physically touch the pages, the art, would make the connection to this story even more emotional.  

This is a great read for young YA readers (14 and up) as well as adults.  For me it was a bit of a look back into my history (although I grew up in a very different way) and made me want to search out information that I would not have had about our society when I was a teen.  For teens, I think this is an important book of self discovery, of learning to trust yourself.  I would love to see this book in high school/college English Lit classes being analyzed and discussed.  I think it could truly open a whole new world for people.  

**This book does deal with the death of two parents and some of the harsh reality of living in poverty. Please for parents of younger YA readers especially, although I would suggest this to everyone, take the time to discuss this book with your reader!**


About The Authors:
Julie Chibbaro and Jean-Marc Superville Sovak are the husband and wife duo behind Into the Dangerous World (Viking 2015).
Julie Chibbaro was born into a family of artists, and also married one. She grew up in NYC during the explosion of graffiti art. She has written two historical novels, Redemption, which won the American Book Award, and Deadly, which won the National Jewish Book Award. JM Superville Sovak is half-Trini, half-Czech, half-Canadian. His fourth half is spent making art, for which he earned his M.F.A. from Bard College in NY.
They both live in Beacon, NY.
For those of you that purchase a copy of INTO THE DANGEROUS WORLD any time during the official book tour (August 18-September 30) will receive a one of a kind #IntoTheDangerousWorld pack filled with lots of goodies.
(While supplies last)
To qualify you must send proof of purchase to amydelrosso(at)gmail(dot)com.
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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Tough Love by Lori Foster - Review and Excerpt Tour

Tough Love - Review & Excerpt Tour  banner  

I am absolutely thrilled to help

bring you the Review & Excerpt Tour for Lori Foster's TOUGH LOVE! 

TOUGH LOVE is  the next novel in her Ultimate Series  published by Harlequin HQN. 

This amazing book releases on August 25th

If you haven't before, make sure you grab the other books in this fantastic series today!

  Tough Love - cover

 Amazon ~ Barnes and Noble ~ iBooks ~ Kobo ~ GooglePlay ~ Booksamillion

Book Description:

She's playing hard to get…to win the MMA fighter of her ultimate fantasies in a sultry new novel from New York Times bestselling author Lori Foster  

Vanity Baker loves a good, clean match, but she's not above playing a little dirty. She's wanted Stack "The Wolf" Hannigan from day one. Seems as though the best way to corral the famously commitment-phobic fighter is to insist on keeping it casual. And her plan works—deliciously well—until Stack's past steps out of the shadows. Stack learned early to stay free of attachments. But with sexy, forthright Vanity, he's the one always left wanting more. Then his troublemaking family comes back into the picture, threatening everything Stack cares about—Vanity included. Suddenly he realizes they're much more than friends with benefits. He's ready to go to the mat for her…but will it be in time to protect the woman who's tamed him for good?  

My Review:

Vanity and Stack have been dancing around each other for months, until Vanity gathered up all her courage and decided the way to Stacks heart was through a simple (is it ever really simple?) seduction.  Tough Love begins at the wedding of two of their friends, Cannon and Yvette's wedding.  At the end of Holding Strong (book two in the Ultimate Novel series) Vanity asks Stack to join her at the wedding as her date and promises one night in exchange.  Vanity knows Stack, she's watched him, she's studied him, she wants him, but she knows that he does not do relationships. She also knows how to get what she wants and she has a plan, too bad that  plan may be her ultimate failure.  

I really enjoyed Vanity.  I appreciated how this girl who simultaneously lost everything (everyone) and gained a fortune stayed down to earth, not becoming a pretentious, bitter, spoiled rich girl.  Vanity is a girl with a heart of gold and a giving nature.  She lost her entire family in one horrible accident and it taught her to live everyday to it's fullest, to go after what she wants, to stand her ground when needed, and to love with her whole heart.  I loved her strength and kindness, I loved that she put herself out there to help others when needed without even giving it a second thought.  I loved her for her independence, she has taken care of herself for so long that he relies on no one, but I loved even more than she wasn't afraid to accept help and support when it was given or needed.  

Stack, it is truly hard not to fall head over heels for Stack.  It is easy to see why Vanity fell hard for him.  We know from previous books that he is commitment phobic, but what we don't truly see until now is his deep love for his family, friends, and community.  Stack is 'knight' with a shining back eye, but a 'knight' none the less.  Like all heroes he has a issues to overcome, his toughest being his inability to truly trust.  To trust that someone won't lie to him, to trust that they want him for him, not for who he is or what he can do for them.  He is a gentle soul in the body of beast.  He's sexy, strong, protective, and caring.  A huge downfall for me with Stack though was his inability (it seems) to think before he spoke.  He harbors a lot of pain from past relationships, but wow he could cut down a tree with his words a time or two.  Now we all know he was going to mess up, it is just the way of a contemporary romance and redemption is part of that formula, but I was really surprised by how thoughtless he could be of Vanity's heart a time or two.  

Good thing he knows how to make-up after a fight!  The steamy scenes between these two characters are for lack of a better word HOT!  I loved that you think coming into this book you are going to get an insta-love vibe but Lori Foster manages to give this couple time to really grow together.  There are a lot of side stories that go on keeping our couple apart from each other a little more than I would have liked, but I appreciated that the moment we were all waiting for got dragged out a bit and once we got there, wow!  

I loved having Stack and Vanity together, they are an amazing pair and so perfectly suited for each other once they can both let go and be honest with one another.  There is a true feeling of deep love between he two of them, I can very much see their relationship reflecting the relationship that Stacks mother and father had.  Those daily words and touches of love, the simple sweet smiles, and not so sweet ones when they think no one is looking.  Long nights of calm moments followed up by some pretty steamy not so calm ones.  It always feels good to set down a book and be able to imagine the lives of the books characters long after you have finished reading and I never fail to do that with one of Lori Foster's stories, and especially with Stack and Vanity.  

Tough Love is part of a series and I will of course suggest that you read the first books before starting this one but...Tough Love could be picked up and read as a Standalone.  You will get a few spoilers for past books in case you decided to go back and read them, and there might be a time or two you scratch your head over a few moments but in general you will not be lost.  No Limits is the title of the first book, but start with Hard Knocks (a novella), a prequel to the series.

 Fans of Contemporary Romances, MMA, NALit, strong female heroines and alpha males will enjoy this book.  The fighting takes a back seat to the romances in this series, so don't go in looking for an in-depth of the MMA/Fighting world.  I am thoroughly enjoying this series and ARMIE is next in Fighting Dirty....I CAN NOT WAIT!   


        Tough Love - promo banner  


She softened. Harking back to the idiotic joke about him being a wolf and how ladies reacted, she said, “At least I didn’t howl, right?”

Mocking her, he said, “Little bit.”

She laughed. “Well, I wouldn’t want to ruin your rep.” Now decently covered, she sat on the bed beside him and pulled on socks. “So what’s happening? A street light go out? Lady’s cat stuck in a tree? Somebody have a flat tire?”

“No, smart-ass.” Is that really what she thought they did? If so, he wouldn’t correct her. Soon enough she’d find out that, with Cannon’s leadership, they’d become watchdogs for the neighborhood. Together they’d run off drug dealers, stopped extortion, helped family-run businesses stay open, and secured the safety of the young and the elderly. Being honest, Stack told her, “But if that happened, we’d help if we could.”

“Of course you would.” She looked beneath the bed, found ankle boots and, sitting on the floor, pulled them on. “So what’s going on then?”

He eyed the boots with curiosity. Why the hell was she getting dressed? “My mom collapsed.”

Her face fell. “Oh, God, Stack.” Scrambling back to her feet, she said, “I’m so sorry!”

She looked sincerely, deeply sorry. Huh. They hadn’t yet slept together, she’d never met his mom, but she cared all the same. “My sister called while we were in the shower. When she couldn’t reach me, she called Armie.”

“She knows him?”

“They’ve met. In case of an emergency she has his number along with a few others.”

Her small hand covered her mouth. “So this is an emergency?”

“Hard to say.” He stood and buttoned up his tux shirt, leaving it untucked. “Tabby’s all into drama, so if Mom stubbed her toe, she’d be as likely to call it life and death.”

Gasping, Vanity whispered, “Life and death? That was her message?”

He had to grin at her horrified expression. “No, she just told Armie that Mom collapsed. I’ll call her on my way out to find out the details.”

Nodding, Vanity rushed to her closet and withdrew a dark poncho. She snagged his hand and started out of the room. “Come on.”

When Stack didn’t budge, she pulled up short.

They stared at each other.

“Why are you waiting? You need to make that call!”

Stack nodded. “Where do you think you’re going?”

“With you.”

She said that so matter-of-factly that he frowned in suspicion. “Why would you—”

Exasperated, she hooked her arm through his and tried to get him moving. “You haven’t yet met your obligations. Until you do, I’m not giving you a chance to back out.”

“Believe me, I’ll be back as soon as possible.” He allowed her to drag him to the front door. This time, knowing sex wasn’t on the agenda, he looked around with more interest.

“I’m going with you.”

“Not to a hospital to meet my family.”


Giving up his perusal of her interesting artwork, he turned to her. The innocence in her face amped up his suspicions even more. “That makes zero sense, darlin’, and you know it.”

TOUGH LOVE Review & Excerpt Tour Schedule
August 17th
NightWolf Book Blog – Review & Excerpt
Talk Books to Me – Review & Excerpt
August 18th
Romance Bytes – Excerpt
Indy Book Fairy – Excerpt
Romance Reviews and More – Review & Excerpt
Mythical Books – Excerpt
Read more sleep less – Review & Excerpt
August 19th
Reads All the Books – Review & Excerpt
Tome Tender – Review
Red Cheeks Reads – Review & Excerpt
I Heart YA Books – Excerpt From the TBR Pile – Review & Excerpt
August 20th
A Bookish Escape – Review & Excerpt
Riverina Romantics – Excerpt
Author Groupies – Review
Pages Abound – Review & Excerpt
BookWorm221 – Review & Excerpt
August 21st
grownupfangirl – Excerpt
Those Crazy Book Chicks – Review & Excerpt
Life With Two Boys – Excerpt
stories and swag – Review

August 22nd
naughty Book Eden – Excerpt
The Book Review – Review & Excerpt
The Smut-Brarians – Review & Excerpt
Making it Happen – Review & Excerpt
August 23rd
Cruising Susan Book Reviews – Review & Excerpt
Ashleyz Wonderland – Excerpt
YOLOFORALIVING – Review & Excerpt
Books and Warpaint – Review & Excerpt
August 24th
Will Read for Feels – Excerpt
Wild and Dirty Book Blog – Review & Excerpt
Becky on Books – Excerpt
Book Munchies – Review & Excerpt
Vera is Reading – Excerpt
Jen's Reading Obsession – Review & Excerpt
BJ's Reviews – Excerpt
August 25th
Alleskelle Blogs – Review & Excerpt
August 26th
Oh My Growing TBR – Review & Excerpt
Stormy Day Reading Books – Review & Excerpt
Between The Lines – Review
I Bookin' Love To Read – Review & Excerpt
BBF BookBoyfriends – Review & Excerpt

August 27th
KT Book reviews – Excerpt
PBC – Review
Kimmy Loves to Read – Excerpt
The Book Maven – Review
August 28th
Talking Books Blog – Excerpt
Fic Central – Review
Coast to Coast Book Besties – Review & Excerpt
Caroline Jane Reads – Excerpt
The Book rogue – Review
mignonmykel : reviews – Review & Excerpt
August 29th
G&T Indie CafĂ© – Excerpt
My YA NA Book Obession – Review & Excerpt
alpha book club – Review & Excerpt
Read-Love-Blog – Review
August 30th
Books Need TLC – Review
Margie's Must Reads – Excerpt
Renee Entress's Blog – Review & Excerpt
Rock 'n' Romance – Excerpt
Books and Friendz – Review & Excerpt
Sexy Bibliophiles – Review

TOUGH LOVE is part of the Ultimate series. Check out all the books in the Ultimate series today!

Ultimate Novels- cover banner

Hard Knocks

No Limits

Holding Strong

Tough Love

Fighting Dirty

  Praise for TOUGH LOVE: “Foster brings her signature blend of heat and sweet to her addictive third Ultimate martial arts contemporary. Foster ably tosses out red herrings and also seamlessly lays the foundation for the next book in this series. This luscious tale will appeal to Foster’s legion of fans and attract new ones—even those who aren’t fans of professional fighting.”- Publishers Weekly  

Author PhotoAbout Lori Foster: Since first publishing in January 1996, Lori Foster has become a USA Today, Publisher’s Weekly and New York Times bestselling author. Lori has published through a variety of houses, including Kensington, St. Martin’s, Harlequin, Silhouette, Samhain, and Berkley/Jove. She is currently published with HQN. Lori hosts a very special annual “Reader & Author” event in West Chester, Ohio. Proceeds from the event have benefited many worthy causes, including the Hamilton County YWCA Battered Women’s Shelter, the Animal Adoption Foundation, The Conductive Learning Center for children with spina bifida and cerebral palsy, and The One Way Farm, Children’s Home. Each year Lori donates all proceeds from one book to charity. You can see the benefit romance books here:



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