Yours And Mine by Christine Duval (Freshman Forty #2)

 

Yours And Mine
Christine Duval
(Freshman Forty #2)
Publication date: February 10th 2017
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult

The highly anticipated sequel to Positively Mine….

Picking up from the dramatic ending of Positively Mine, Yours and Mine continues the Freshman Forty series as we meet Danny Santoro, Laurel’s baby’s father, for the first time.

It’s been almost a year since he last saw her, that sultry morning she walked off the beach before dawn had even cracked the August sky. It seemed from her silence, she was out of his life forever.

But Laurel’s timing couldn’t be worse to tell him he’s a father. The last year hasn’t been easy. Danny’s own father was arrested for a DUI, his mother moved out, and Danny started sleeping with his brother’s old high school, drug-abusing girlfriend.

After Laurel shocks him with the news, she attempts to relinquish Danny of any parental responsibility leading to a heated custody battle. In an unorthodox arrangement, an eccentric judge orders Danny and Laurel to spend alternating weekends with each other for the upcoming school year.

Told from Danny’s point of view, Yours and Mine explores the second chapter of a romance that never got off the ground, the challenges of young parenting, and the hope of rekindled love.

Goodreads / Amazon

***REVIEW BY LIZ***

Yours and Mine by Christine Duval was such an emotional read. I found it genuine and heartbreaking to see what Danny and Laurel went through as young parents. I do, however, must admit I did not read the first book, but will do so as soon as possible. Though I did not feel totally lost, the first book deals with how Laurel dealt with being pregnant and alone (by her own choice).

In Yours and Mine, Danny only finds out about the baby after she is born. It’s been almost a year since he last saw Laurel and he thought that had been the last of it. But now she is back and telling him he is a father. Oh, and letting him know she is okay with him relinquishing all his rights. She is setting him free of all responsibilities.

But Danny has other ideas. It has not been an easy time for him in the last year. His father was arrested for a DUI, he started sleeping with a girl who is older and abuses drugs and is going to

school. But he is not ready to relinquish his parental rights. He wants to be a part of his daughter’s life. But Laurel is not ready to share her daughter either. And so, they head to court.

Laurel, though a mother, is still very young and had a lot of growing up to do. She loved her daughter, but it also seemed like she wanted to have a normal college experience as well. Which is really a hard thing to do. She was a bit irritating at times with her demands, requests and actions. But we also see her slowly begin to mature.

On the other hand, I really liked Danny. He was not perfect in any way, but he immediately, once the shock of learning he was a father wore off, wanted to be a part of his daughter’s life and fought for his rights. He did not settle for what Laurel wanted to give him. And once he realized there could be something there with Laurel, he went after her as well.

It was interesting to get this story only from the male point of view, but it was also refreshing to see him involved in and wanting to be a part of his child’s life. And while Laurel attempted to have as normal a college life as she could, Danny arranged his life to be a father. It was an interesting contrast. But after the courts dictated an original custody agreement, you see these two connect and get to know each other all over again.

I enjoyed Danny and Laurel’s story. It was a bit angsty, but also filled with hope and possibility. Their journey was not easy, as finding your way as young parents never is, but we get to see them both grow, learn what is truly important and open up to possibilities.

I give Yours and Mine by Christine Duval 4-stars!

Author Bio:

Christine Duval lives in New Jersey with her family. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, Women Who Write, and the Authors Guild.

When not creating fictional characters or organizing carpools, you can find her walking through houses and writing about them for an upscale real estate company. She also has an extensive social media background and has worked for several well-known magazines.

Find her online at www.christineduval.com or on Twitter @christineduval1.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

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Nine Kinds of Naughty by Jeanette Grey (Art of Passion #3)

Available: Now Amazon/B&N

Type: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Forever

My Copy: NetGalley

Reviewer: Kim

NOT SUITABLE FOR WORK

Lexie Bellamy can handle a boardroom. Relationships, however, are a minefield that always blow up. When a business trip takes her to Spain, Lexie knows she’ll have no problem closing the deal. But spending uninterrupted one-on-one time with her crazy-hot coworker might be more than she can take.

At the office, Lexie gets to call the shots. But this trip is the perfect opportunity for Dane Huntley to show his gorgeous boss how good it can feel when someone else takes charge…

Miles away from home, giving in to Dane’s naughty commands feels so easy. But when the trip is over, Lexie’s determined to go back to their professional relationship. Dane, though, has other ideas. He’ll have to prove that what they’ve found together is real… and he has no intention of letting go.

Jeanette Grey is a somewhat new author to me. I just recently read Let It Snow and am glad to read yet another great story!!

Lexie Bellamy is the definition of a strong, independent boss lady. She’s extremely smart and has so much going on trying to have control and prove her worth, Lexie hasn’t just let go in some time. She is bound and determined to show her brother that she is perfectly capable of running their company.

Dane Huntley is an extreme thrill seeker trying to mask the pain of losing his brother. Dane is playing work life safe for his mother, working as Lexie’s assistant even though the corporate world is just not for him. Dane knows Lexie desperately needs to lose control and he wants to be the one to show her how. But how exactly do you get your boss to explore the BDSM lifestyle with you?

Nine Kinds of Naughty was EXACTLY that…so very naughty. Lexie and Dane are both strong characters who try to keep their vulnerability close to the vest. Their chemistry, in and out of the bedroom, is very sexy. Now, there is A LOT of BDSM which I thought might make me a little uncomfortable (it’s just not my thing) but I feel that the storyline was done very tastefully. I kind honestly say that Jeanette Grey has changed my mind about the BDSM storyline. I loved the fact that Lexie was the boss and that Dane was the assistant out in the professional world. Yet in private, Lexie was the one doing the submitting. The role switching really peaked my interest and made the story very appealing to me.

Though there is A LOT of sex, I enjoyed watching Dane and Lexie build their relationship based on trust. I loved how it evolved into something more and how Lexie learned to let go.

There are two other books in the Art of Passion Series which do not have to be read to follow this book. However, I will definitely be checking the rest of the series out!

This is one of the most sensual, sexy and irresistible romances that I have read to date. I could not put it down and finished it in an afternoon!

I give Nine Kinds of Naughty by Jeanette Grey 4 stars!

Unexpectedly Hers by Jamie Beck (Sterling Canyon #3)

Available: February 21, 2017 Amazon/B&N

Type: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Montlake

My Copy: NetGalley

Reviewer: Kim

By day, bashful wallflower Emma Duffy works at her family’s bed-and-breakfast. By night, she secretly pens erotic romance hot enough to melt the snow in their cozy Rockies town.

But Emma’s real life is about to heat up when her mother books the entire inn to a professional snowboarder, hoping the publicity will put them on the map. In a karmic twist of fate, that guest is Wyatt Lawson, the man with whom Emma had shared the secret one-night stand that became the inspiration for her novel and its dreamy hero. Worse, a film crew is documenting his comeback just as her debut is about to hit the shelves. Emma’s only saving grace is that Wyatt doesn’t remember her—and hopefully he never will.

When Wyatt arrives in Sterling Canyon for several weeks of intense training, the last tumble he expects to take is falling for a girl, especially one as shy as Emma. Unlike groupies with their hidden agendas, she isn’t using him—or so he believes…until the film crew uncovers Emma’s pen name and steamy novel.

Wyatt’s comeback run can withstand a fall or two, but can his heart recover from this crash and burn?

Unexpectedly Hers is the third book in the Sterling Canyon series by Jamie Beck. Ms. Beck is a first-time author to me. This book can be read as a stand alone novel, and it is not necessary to have read the first two books to be caught up with this one. Hopefully, the other two books were better than this one but at this point, I really am not interested in finding out.

I am usually very excited to give new authors a chance but this book really disappointed me. So much so that I skimmed almost the entire book.

Emma is a 31-year-old mama’s girl working at her mother’s B&B in the mountains. What her mother doesn’t know is that Emma is writing erotica under a pseudonym right under her nose. Her entire story is based on a one night stand she had with Wyatt when she was pretending to be someone else.

Wyatt ends up staying at the inn while her mother decides to leave town, leaving Emma to run the entire B&B. Wyatt has no idea Emma is the girl from the one night stand a few weeks back. He is in town filming his comeback story as a professional snowboarder.

The relationship between Emma and Wyatt is just strange. She is mad because he doesn’t remember her, yet she does not want him to remember her. Emma stays away from Wyatt as much as possible but yet goes out of the way to help his brother, Ryder, who obviously wants nothing to do with his brother or this movie being filmed. Wyatt is all about getting into the pants of the girl who does nothing but ignore him. Now you know they finally get together and have sex. Even that is strange. Sneaking around, I want him but wait, no I don’t.

Needless to say, everything comes to a head and things don’t go as Emma planned. I honestly found myself hoping that Wyatt kicked her to the curb or that Emma hooked up with someone else by the end of the story. I just did not feel this story, at all.

I give Unexpectedly Hers by Jamie Beck 1 star

Brighter Than The Sun by Maya Banks (KGI #11)

Available: March 7, 2017 Amazon/B&N

Type: Romantic Suspense

Publisher: Jove

My Copy: NetGalley

Reviewer: Nikki

The Kelly Group International (KGI): A super-elite, top secret, family-run business.
Qualifications: High intelligence, rock-hard body, military background.
Mission: Hostage/kidnap victim recovery. Intelligence gathering.
Handling jobs the U.S. government can’t…

As the last unattached member of the Kelly clan, Joe is more than ready to risk life and limb on any mission he’s assigned to, but when it comes to love, he’ll keep his distance. He’s content to watch his brothers become thoroughly domesticated.

Zoe’s had nothing but heartbreak in her life, and she’s determined to start over with a completely new identity, thanks to her college friend, Rusty Kelly. But it’s the gorgeous smile and tender words of Joe Kelly that begin to weaken her resolve to never risk her heart again. And Joe will have to put everything on the line to save Zoe, when secrets of her past resurface—and threaten to tear them apart…

Running from a life she never chose, Zoe has created a new identity for herself with the help of her best friend Rusty. Never having been allowed to be herself, Zoe has no clue how to act without the barrier of designer clothing and a ton of makeup. Insecure and nervous of being found and forced back into a life she doesn’t want by an unloving father, Rusty takes her home to the family compound before her last journey to freedom.

Joe knows his mother wants him to find “the one” and settle down to make some more Kelly babies just like his brothers but that’s just not him. He loves being free from responsibilities outside of his KGI ones and has no need for a permanent woman in his life. Rusty’s new friend Zoe immediately triggers all his warning bells with her skittishness and vague background information. Telling himself he’s just protecting his family, he attempts to get close to her to learn her story.

Zoe knows she can’t tell Joe the truth about her past. She’s everything he stands against while fighting the bad guys. As they get closer and feelings get deeper, Zoe is either going to have to trust him……or let him go so she can protect him.

So here we are. Book 11 in probably my favorite series ever. The KGI series by Maya Banks. A series that has most definitely had its ups and downs. Several downs in fact. A few downs that had me almost quit reading the series. It took me a year to read book 9 because book 8 pissed me off so much. But I eventually came back and was pleasantly pleased with book 9. I read book 10 and gave it a solid 3.5 stars, even if the majority of the book I was seriously pissed off at the “hero”. That brings us to book 11, Joe’s story. The twin I wasn’t sure would ever get his own happy ending. The last remaining Kelly brother.

I found Brighter Than The Sun to be well done. Not too long like has been a problem in the past, full of engaging dynamics between characters and perfectly paced. I enjoyed the progression of the relationship between Joe and Zoe. I thought it was done with an honesty and an air of reality. It just felt real to me. Even with the weird paranormal thread that was introduced that I know lots of readers detested. I mean, at this point, there’s no taking it out, so I thought it was used well but not overly so. I think Banks realized her misstep in adding those in and has used them as little as she could since then. Zoe is terribly insecure and obviously nervous about her future but Joe manages to draw her out. I wish we would have gotten more backstory on her though. I understood the gist of her background but it felt a bit glossed over and unimportant, when it should have been highlighted more so readers could understand her character better.

The suspense aspect really doesn’t kick in until close to the end. Up till that point it’s a straight contemporary romance with some military/black ops aspects thrown in. However, it’s full throttle from then on out. It almost came out of nowhere. One minute nothing and then BAM, hit the ground running. I enjoyed the amount of characters in those scenes because there were a ton. This group of men and women who make up KGI, work so well together and I love to see their personalities mesh so well on the page. Even the new recruits were entertaining.

I think my favorite thing about this book though was Rusty and her budding relationship with the town sheriff. Her and Sean have been going round in circles since the beginning and I cannot wait for them to finally get a story. It appears I might get my wish soon since they got awfully close in this book. Fingers crossed.

Overall, Brighter Than The Sun got much, much closer to returning to the books I loved from earlier in this series. Providing there are no weird paranormal curveballs again or over the top, long drawn out story lines, I think Banks has returned to the author I love.

I give Brighter Than The Sun by Maya Banks 4 stars!

 

 

 

Love Story by Lauren Layne (Love Unexpectedly #3)

Over the course of one wild road trip, 

feuding childhood sweethearts get a second chance at love.

LOVE STORY

a Love Unexpectedly novel

Lauren Layne

Releasing February 14th, 2017

Loveswept

 

Over the course of one wild road trip, feuding childhood sweethearts get a second chance at love in this charming rom-com—a standalone novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Blurred Lines and Good Girl.

When Lucy Hawkins receives a job offer in San Francisco, she can’t wait to spread her wings and leave her small Virginia hometown behind. Her close-knit family supports her as best they can, by handing over the keys to a station wagon that’s seen better days. The catch? The cross-country trip comes with a traveling companion: her older brother’s best friend, aka the guy who took Lucy’s virginity hours before breaking her heart.

After spending the past four years and every last dime caring for his sick father, Reece Sullivan will do just about anything to break free of the painful memories—even if it means a two-week road trip with the one girl who’s ever made it past his carefully guarded exterior. But after long days of bickering in the car turn into steamy nights in secluded motel rooms, Reece learns that, when it comes to Lucy, their story is far from over. And this time, they just might have a shot at a happy ending.

Although listed as a title in the Love Unexpectedly Series, all books in the series stand alone.

 

**Review From Liz**

Love Story by Lauren Layne is a story about second chances, even if it’s the last thing they wanted. When childhood friends turned lovers, turned enemies of sorts, embark on a two-week road trip, the shenanigans begin!

Lucy Hawkins has always been drawn to Reece Sullivan. Even if he was her older brother’s best friend, he never treated her like a pest. Over the years, they developed their own friendship, until one day they both realized it was so much more.

Lucy is set to move across the country to start her new job. She is excited. As part of this journey, she planned on taking two weeks to see the country. But fate has other plans. When her car finally breaks down, her family jumps in to save the day, by offering the keys to their old family station wagon. But there is a catch. The first and only boy she loved, gave her virginity too, and broke her heart the next day, comes along for the ride as well.

I loved Lucy Hawkins. She was strong-willed, determined and passionate about life. Once she set her mind on something, she jumped in with both feet. Always thinking of the endgame. But no matter what, she wanted Reece Sullivan to be a part of that endgame.

Reece, on the other hand, has not had an easy life. Losing so much as a child, he gravitates to his best friend’s family, where he is accepted and treated as one of their own. But always feeling inferior, he lets his insecurities and self-doubt stand in the way of what he has always wanted. Finally needing a change and a fresh start, he takes a job across the country.

The last thing either of them wants is to spend time together, much less in a confined space for two weeks. But neither wants to disappoint her family and really, it just makes sense. Right from the start, these two were constantly bickering or totally avoiding each other. So many moments I found myself smiling. Other times they just broke my heart.

These two really cared so much for each other, but let misunderstandings and doubts come between them. Both determined to forget, neither really could. Both held secrets from each other, that in the end, put so much space between them.

I loved how author not only gave us both points of views in this story, but also glimpses of Lucy and Reece’s past. As we got to see their interactions in the present, we see how they became friends, found love and then lost everything. It added so much to the story.

I enjoyed reading Love Story by Lauren Layne. It was a sweet book, with laugh out loud moments and two very likeable characters. Lucy and Reece were so good together, even when they were constantly fighting, that you are immediately drawn into their story.

I give Love Story by Lauren Layne 4-stars.

 

Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen romantic comedies. A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011 to pursue a full-time writing career. She lives in midtown Manhattan with her high-school sweetheart, where she writes smart romantic comedies with just enough sexy-times to make your mother blush. In LL’s ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.

 

 

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Park Avenue Prince by Louise Bay

Available: Now Amazon/B&N

Type: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Self

My Copy: Sent

Reviewer: Kim

THE PRINCE OF PARK AVENUE FINALLY MEETS HIS MATCH IN A FEISTY MANHATTAN PRINCESS.

I’ve made every one of my billions of dollars myself—I’m calculating, astute and the best at what I do. It takes drive and dedication to build what I have. And it leaves no time for love or girlfriends or relationships.

But don’t get me wrong, I’m not a monk.

I understand the attention and focus it takes to seduce a beautiful woman. They’re the same skills I use to close business deals. But one night is where it begins and ends. I’m not the guy who sends flowers. I’m not the guy who calls the next day.

Or so I thought before an impatient, smart-talking, beyond beautiful heiress bursts into my world.

When Grace Astor rolls her eyes at me—I want to hold her against me and show her what she’s been missing.

When she makes a joke at my expense—I want to silence her sassy mouth with my tongue.

And when she leaves straight after we f*ck with barely a goodbye—it makes me want to pin her down and remind her of the three orgasms she just had.

She might be a princess but I’m going to show her who rules in this Park Avenue bedroom.

A sexy, standalone, contemporary romance.

Grace Astor, Park Avenue Princes. Gallery Owner. Fixer of men. Grace wants to believe that there is not an ounce of truth to that. Grace is bound and determined to make it on her own. She owns her own art gallery which she will do anything to keep open, even if it means featuring artwork from a two timing ex-boyfriend. At that opening, she meets the gorgeous and charming Sam Shaw.

Started at the bottom, now he’s here 😉 Sam Shaw, Park Avenue Prince. Sam learned at a very young age to not form connections to anything or anyone. Orphaned when he was a child, he learned to be tough in all aspects of his life. That tough guy attitude is about to fly out the window once he spends time with Grace.

Sam is totally intrigued with Grace. She has him feeling all sorts of things he has never felt and taking risks he has never taken before for her. Grace is just trying to find out what makes Sam tick and do what she does best, fix him. Grace pushes Sam, Sam pushes right back.

“He was everything I shouldn’t want – everything I’d spent my life rejecting and here I was, wanting him so badly I could barely breathe.”

Park Avenue Prince was a well written, romantic book. There was just something about the sex between the couple that was remarkable. I also loved the secondary characters. I enjoyed Grace and Sam as a couple as well as on their own. Grace was very down to earth and a take no shit kind of girl. Sam was the one who harbored the most pain. Being a child growing up in the system and only having one true friend, certainly shaped the man he became. But it was lovely to see that all fall apart as he fell for Grace.

I give Park Avenue Prince by Louise Bay four stars!!

PROMO: Keeping Her Wet by M. Robinson

Available: Now Amazon/B&N

Type: Romantic Erotica

Publisher: Self

My copy: Sent 

Reviewer: Liz

A Novella from USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR M. ROBINSON just in time to spice up your Valentines Day!

Ten couples.

Twenty characters.

Ten chapters.

A collection of ten hot scenes from all ten of M. Robinson’s standalone books. Each couple will have a chapter dedicated to them. New and never read before.

Sebastian and Ysabelle- The VIP Trilogy

Mika and The Madam- The VIP Trilogy

Devon and Brooke- Tempting Bad

James and Gianna- Two Sides Gianna

Lucas and Alex- Complicate Me (The Good Ol’ Boys)

Jacob and Lily- Forbid Me (The Good Ol’ Boys)

Dylan and Aubrey- Undo Me (The Good Ol’ Boys)

Austin and Briggs- Crave Me (The Good Ol’ Boys)

Martinez and Lexi- El Diablo

Creed and Mia- Road to Nowhere & Ends Here

*Note: You do not have to read the books above to read Keeping Her Wet!

Keeping Her Wet by M. Robinson is a must read for all her fans! A novella with a chapter devoted to each of her couples to-date full of hot, steamy scenes that remind us why we love her characters and stories so much. And not to worry, if you are new to M, this is a great introduction to her characters. Absolutely no spoilers.

Each couple is given one hot sexy scene together with both point of views. Some were so surprising and may include more than anticipated, but every single chapter will keep you captivated.

This was a great read! I loved every chapter. Every single, steamy, sexy chapter. Perfect timing with Valentine’s Day around the corner. One quick note, this is an erotic novella, so expect a lot of sex from your favorite couples.

A fun and sexy quick read for fans of M and newbies as well. A must read for sure and one I highly recommend.

Keeping Her Wet by M. Robinson was a 5+ hot and steamy stars for me!

A Thousand Letters by Staci Hart

 

 

 

Title: A Thousand Letters

Author: Staci Hart

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: February 9, 2017

Blurb

 

Sometimes your life is split by a single decision.

I’ve spent every day of the last seven years regretting mine: he left, and I didn’t follow. A thousand letters went unanswered, my words like petals in the wind, spinning away into nothing, taking me with them.

But now he’s back.

I barely recognize the man he’s become, but I can still see a glimmer of the boy who asked me to be his forever, the boy I walked away from when I was young and afraid.

Maybe if he’d come home under better circumstances, he could speak to me without anger in his voice. Maybe if I’d said yes all those years ago, he’d look at me without the weight of rejection in his eyes. Maybe if things were different, we would have had a chance.

One regretted decision sent him away. One painful journey bought him back to me. I only wish I could keep him.

*A contemporary romance inspired by Jane Austen’s Persuasion*

 

Purchase Links

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

Free in Kindle Unlimited

 

 

*****REVIEW FROM LIZ***** 

A Thousand Letters by Staci Heart was such an emotional roller coaster. I love angst, I mean for me, the more the better, but this book really took it to the limit. I could not put it down, even as my heart hurt.

Wade and Elliott were high school sweethearts. Happy. Until they weren’t. They went their separate ways. Lived their separate lives filled with regrets. Seven years later, he came back. But things are different now. They are different people now. Too much time and hurt has passed, but have all the feelings?

I loved this story. It was a beautiful story with all the feels. Choices were made that could not be taken back and now he was finally back. But not for her.

This story was so much more than just a second chance romance. It’s hard to talk about without giving away spoilers, but it was also about family, friends, loss and finding your way back. It was about letting go. When I finished this book, I needed a moment. This is a book I will think about for a long time to come.

I was drawn in from the start. My heart hurt. With every word, I was drawn in to their devastating journey. Will they find their way back to each other? Can you learn to put the past behind you to move forward? This was a heartbreaking story of two lost and broken people possibly finding their second chance.

I give A Thousand Letters by Staci Hart 5-stars!

Author Bio

 

 

 

Staci has been a lot of things up to this point in her life: a graphic designer, an entrepreneur, a seamstress, a clothing and handbag designer, a waitress. Can’t forget that. She’s also been a mom, with three little girls who are sure to grow up to break a number of hearts. She’s been a wife, even though she’s certainly not the cleanest, or the best cook. She’s also super, duper fun at a party, especially if she’s been drinking whiskey. Her favorite word starts with f and ends with k.

From roots in Houston, to a seven year stint in Southern California, Staci and her family ended up settling somewhere in between and equally north, in Denver. They are new enough that snow is still magical. When she’s not writing, she’s sleeping, cleaning, or designing graphics.

Author Links

Ex-Con Part 1-3 by Katana Collins (Harrison Street Crew)

Available: Part 1 – January 7 2017 Amazon/B&N

                  Part 2 – February 7 2017 Amazon/B&N

                  Part 3 – February 14 2017 Amazon/B&N

Type: Romantic Suspense

Publisher: Swerve

My Copy: NetGalley

Reviewer: Nikki

Ex-convict Shane McGill is as rugged and wild as they come. Bad to the bone and back on the streets, he’ll do anything and say anything to survive. Even if that something means joining the one car club he had worked so hard to avoid. But there’s one person out there who can match him toe-to-toe…the hot mechanic pin-up doll of a woman with the body of a goddess and tomboy attitude would even give him a chance.

Is Fast and Furious your favorite movie? If you answered yes, well then this is probably the book for you. Because reading this book was a lot like watching any of the movies in that series. Lots of street racing, lots of gear wrenching and just enough sexual tension to keep you on edge.

I have to admit first off, that one of the sole reasons I picked this book up was the ex-con draw. I feel like those heroes are generally the underdogs and I love that type of hero. Plus there is the whole bad boy thing that totally gets my *ahem* motor running. Shane wasn’t an overly complex character, but I felt from the beginning that he was missing part of the backstory to the Harrison Street Crew he was trying so hard to avoid. It was pretty annoying too that none of the other characters clued him in for so damn long. In fact, that was my main gripe about this book overall. Everything was so long and drawn out. And not in the sexy way you’re hoping I mean it for.

Charlie is a female mechanic/ shop owner in a very rough area of town. She’s looking for street cred by street racing to break into the inner circle of all the car owners looking to take their vehicles in for upgrades. She knows her stuff and craves the thrills but it often leads to her taking unnecessary risks. With mounting bills she’s gambling every time she buys into yet another race, especially those against the famed leader for the Harrison Street Crew, but it’s her only option in making enough money to cover another months bills. When the HSC newest driver turns out to be her newest employee she’s conflicted about keeping him on. Ultimately her attraction to him wins out as she begins to trust the stranger who claims to have been “out of town” since she moved in.

Of course, by “out of town” Shane means maximum security prison, but the pretty mechanic surely doesn’t need to know all that. Especially since he just needs to make enough money to get his cherry ride running again so he can flee the state and break his parole. Except the more Shane learns about her plight and the shady characters who seem to be tailing her, the more he wants to stick around to protect her. But sticking around might mean both their deaths.

At the heart of the story I really enjoyed it. The ex-con/female mechanic aspect was awesome, original and something that instantly drew me. I liked both Shane and Charlie too. The sex was good but felt a bit to scripted and predictable. Except maybe the hood of a car scene, that one was pretty hot. I found the stalker aspect of Charlie’s ex the most interesting parts of the book. I hated how she was unable to confide in her best friend or her family about their past and his abusiveness and I understood her reluctance to get involved with a man like Shane because of that past. I was rooting for Shane to really show her he was different. Which of course he did.

The problem for me was the slow pace of the entire book (or 3 sections depending on how you’re reading this one). It was SOOOOOOOOOOOO slow. Nothing much happens for parts 1 and 2. The action doesn’t actually rev its engine until part 3 and then even that is fleeting. I found myself skipping around way to often for my liking.

I do think future books might be better executed due to not having to cover so much information, so I will be looking for those when they come out. However, this one was a bit too slow for my overall liking.

I give Ex-Con by Katana Collins 3 stars!

 

Royal Affair by Parker Swift (Royal Scandal #1)

Available: February 14, 2017 Amazon/B&N

Type: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Forever Yours

My Copy: NetGalley

Reviewer: Kim

One seriously sexy son-of-a-duke . . .

Behind the posh British accent, Dylan Hale possesses a down-and-dirty sexiness. Off-the-charts gorgeous, a ruthless architect . . . and did I mention he’s a future duke? Every time we touch, it’s wildfire. All need and lust and heat. But Dylan has rules: just sex, no one can know, and in the bedroom he gets complete control. All I have to do is follow the rules, because falling in love with Dylan Hale is all it would take to screw everything up . . . royally.

 

Royal Affair is the first book in a three-book series and the debut of author Parker Swift. I enjoyed this cover of this book and was surprised by the British hero, Dylan Hale. I enjoy a dirty talker and man, Dylan did not disappoint!!

Lydia, an American who is trying to make a life for herself after her father passed away from cancer. She had been a nanny for a very well to do family for the summer before starting her life in London as a fashion designer. She runs into Dylan Hale, a gorgeous British architect, on her last day of her nanny job and has no idea how life is about to change from that one chance encounter.

There is instant chemistry between Lydia and Dylan and but yet Lydia thinks that they will never cross paths again. Dylan gives her his number and the craziness begins. Lydia quickly learns that there are ties between the people she is working with and Dylan. She also learns that he is a Duke…totally out of reach for someone like her. However, Dylan will just not let this thing with Lydia die. He proposes a secret “relationship” (in other words, let’s just have lots of sex) and no one can know about them, at all. Dylan does not do relationships and this will keep her out of the press, so he thinks. Of course, Lydia is ok with it but then changes her mind when she feels he is not being truthful.

Royal Affair is a very fast paced, instant love kind of story. It was good but reminded me a little too much of 50 shades. A truly naive woman mixed with a very rich (and British!!), experienced dirty talker who demands total control in the bedroom. The book finished with a cliffhanger and I am intrigued as to what the next book holds.

I give Royal Affair by Parker Swift 4 stars!

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