Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Throne of Truth by Pepper Winters | Out Now!

Tuesday, February 28, 2017 with

Hello everyone,
If you had a chance to read my Crown of Lies review earlier this month, you know I absolutely loved it! It also end in a cliffhanger, BUT Throne of Lies is finally out and it will answer EVERYTHING!


You need to read Crown of Lies first, but it's AMAZING and you'll get hooked and then you'll be ready for Throne of Truth (and lucky you, you won't have to wait an agonizing month to read it).

THREE YEARS
Since I ran away for the night, danced in New York streets, and almost got killed in an alley by two thieves. Until he showed up and saved me.

THREE DAYS
Since I threw a drink at the man my father expected me to marry, then found myself slammed against a wall with Penn Everett’s seductive voice whispering a proposal I couldn’t refuse.

THREE HOURS
To fall into hate with the man who reminded me of so many things and hid so much behind his lies. He couldn’t be the man who saved me three years ago…but there’s something so familiar…

THREE MINUTES
For our relationship to switch from no-strings to marriage. He announced it to my father—he’s ecstatic. He told my friends—they’re shocked. But he didn’t ask me, he commanded me—and I’m livid.

THREE SECONDS
For his lies to slowly steal my heart and make me believe, hope…trust.

THREE BREATHS
For his truth to destroy me.
Start the series with Crown of Lies!
Google Play: https://goo.gl/a9A3nH

On Audio:

Now, if you haven't read Crown of Lies, stop right here.


YASSSS!!!

But, also

Because who is Nameless? Who is that mysterious mf with all the secrets, Penn Everett? And how tf will Elle escape the clutches of that psycho Greg?!

TWO YEARS
Since my life changed for the second time and not necessarily for the better. Two years since I traded prison bars for streets and hunted a runaway who I’d met in an alley.

TWO DAYS
Since I forgot how to lie, woke to fists, and chased after the girl who’d been stolen from me.

TWO HOURS
To save her, rescue her, keep my lies intact. She looks at me full of hate. I look at her full of confession.

TWO MINUTES
For our relationship to switch from mutual dislike to floundering with unknowns. I’ve hurt her. Now, she’s hurt me. I guess we’re even.

TWO SECONDS
For her to listen, to see, to finally know who I am. The answer comes with hardship. The answer isn’t what she wants to hear.

TWO BREATHS
For me to walk out the door.

TWO HEARTBEATS
For it all to be over.
Google Play: https://goo.gl/IuXqg6


About the Author
Pepper Winters is a multiple New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today International Bestseller. After chasing her dreams to become a full-time writer, Pepper has earned recognition with awards for best Dark Romance, best BDSM Series, and best Hero. She’s an multiple #1 iBooks bestseller, along with #1 in Erotic Romance, Romantic Suspense, Contemporary, and Erotica Thriller. With 19 books currently published, she has hit the bestseller charts twenty-six times in three years.

Pepper is a Hybrid Author of both Traditional and Self-published work. Her Pure Corruption Series was released by Grand Central, Hachette. Her books have garnered foreign interest and are currently being translated into numerous languages, including already released titles in Italian and Turkish. Audio Books for her entire back-list will be available in 2017.

Connect with the Author
Twitter: @PepperWinters
Never miss an update! Sign up for Pepper’s newsletter today!
https://pepperwinters.com

******
I am part of the upcoming blog tour for Throne of Truth. Look for my review on March 8th!

Happy reading,
Michelle

Monday, February 27, 2017


Hi everyone,
The Hot One by Lauren Blakely now available at your favorite online e-book retailers! If you've been keeping up with my blog the last few months, you know that I'm a HUGE Lauren Blakely fan and I look forward to each of her releases with much anticipation. Read on for my thoughts about The Hot One and an excerpt.

Release Date: February 26, 2017
Source of my e-copy: InkSlingerPR/Lauren Blakely
Series: One Love #2
Synopsis
A sexy new standalone romance from #1 New York Times Bestselling Author Lauren Blakely...

Ever notice that sometimes a guy will do something really stupid, like let the love of his life slip through his fingers?

Yeah. I'm that guy. But the moment I run into the woman I once loved madly, I’ve got one goal and one goal only—a second chance. The plan? Go big or go home.

Fine, at first glance, stripping naked at my ex-girlfriend's place of work might not seem like the brightest way to win her heart again. But trust me on this count—she always liked me best without any clothes on. And you've got to play to your strengths when you're fighting an uphill battle. As a lawyer, I know how to fight, and I'm prepared to fight hard for her. Because sometimes you need a second chance at first love.

He's the one who got away . . .
The nerve of Tyler Nichols to reappear like that at my job, showing off his rock-hard body that drove me wild far too many nights. That man with his knowing grin and mischievous eyes is nothing but a cocky jerk to saunter back into my life. Except, what if he's not . . .? I've tried like hell to forget him, but maybe I'm cursed to remember the guy I fell madly in love with eight years ago. Lord knows I’m not over him, so what's the harm in giving him a week to prove he's changed in the ways that matter?

After all, how do you resist the hot one…


Second-chance-romance is my all-time favorite romance trope, so I was very much anticipating The Hot One which features a guy trying to win back his ex-girlfriend from college. As always, Lauren Blakely absolutely delivered a most swoon-worthy, romantic comedy read.
Tyler Nichols and Delaney Stewart were college sweethearts--not only were they hot between the sheets (or an empty classroom, or in the stacks, or in the laundry room, etc.) but they were best friends. Delaney didn't have an easy life growing up after her father abandoned their family, and she doesn't let many people in and keeps things close to her chest, but with Tyler she was able to talk to him about everything. Then, he started pulling away and eventually breaks up with her with just a few insensitive words. 

Fast forward, years later, and they run into each other at a park. Tyler, now a hotshot entertainment lawyer, knew this is his chance to win back the love of his life. Delaney, now a massage therapist, wants to forget about the guy who broke her heart in college, but now Tyler is back in her life and determined to win her back. 

Tyler is the cocky and brash but extremely sweet, charming, and caring book boyfriend that I love to read about. He's a go-big-or-go-home kind of guy, and it was fun reading about him do all the things he did to get Delaney to go out with him again. I rooted for him to win back his girl. I love Delaney, too. She's confident, successful, and just a lovely person all around--the kind of person you'd want to be best friends with.

The dynamics between Tyler and Delaney were different from other romance couples who've just met since they've been in a romantic relationship before and knew each other very well from years ago. They played on this familiarity with each other as they went through their courtship, and I found that really refreshing. I really enjoyed the flirtatious banter between them, and I absolutely loved that they talked about their shared past and tackled the whys of what happened to their relationship early on. Often, things get dragged because the characters do not communicate with each other, but Tyler and Delaney cleared the air early on and so the focus wasn't about what happened in the past, but about the now and what each wanted in their present relationship, which I really appreciated. I also love that even though they had a hot and heavy relationship back in college, they didn't immediately fall into bed right away, which really ramped up the sexual tension.

Unlike Lauren's other rom-coms, her One Love books (The Sexy OneThe Only One, and the upcoming The Wild One) are told in dual POVs, which I very much enjoy since I love knowing exactly what each character is thinking. Also, it was fun seeing of a few of the previous characters from Lauren's other books again, like Simon from The Sexy One, who is Tyler's best friend. Penny from The Only One (a 1001 Dark Nights novella) as well as Well Hung, was a secondary character since she's one of Delaney's best friends. There was even mention of Nick Hammer since Tyler represents him. I love how the characters in Lauren's rom-com books are all connected in some way--it's really great getting a little glimpse of them and having these characters of different professions all interconnected you kinda build a community in your head with them.

You can't go wrong picking up The Hot One, especially if you love sexy rom-com reads. It has Lauren Blakely's signature mix of humor and swoon and sexiness. Highly recommended!

She turns her head.

And waves.

And smiles.

That smile makes me feel like I can do this. Like I can win her heart again. Mine pounds faster as I near her, and it’s not just because I happen to think she’s the most stunning woman I’ve ever seen, but because of who she is.

I arrive at her side, and she straightens. “Hey.”

“Hey.”

There’s that awkwardness again, and I want no part of it today. Like the bungee jumper I am, I lean in and dust a quick kiss on her lips. At first, she freezes. That won’t fucking do at all. My tongue darts out, flicking her top lip. A soft breath escapes her, and she gives in. Her sweet lips linger on mine, sending a charge down my spine. My brain leapfrogs ahead, and I picture scooping her up in my arms, carrying her to a quiet little patch of trees, and kissing her till she begs me to take her home.

I want that badly—I want her to beg for it because she’s at her happiest when she’s overcome—but I suspect it’s too soon for her.

Not to mention, screwing in Central Park usually results in a public citation. Public fornicators are never as clandestine as they think they are.

I nibble lightly on her bottom lip for a few seconds, drawing out a throaty murmur from her. Then I somehow find the will to separate.

She blinks. Several times. She sways the slightest bit, like her feet barely touch the ground. Good. I want her to be affected.

She furrows her brow. “I’m sorry, but do we kiss now when we see each other in the park?”

“Evidently we do.”

“Weird. Because I didn’t get that memo.”

I rock on my heels. “Want me to take it back?”

“The kiss or the memo?”

“The memo,” I say matter-of-factly, like this is all so obvious. “You can’t take a kiss back.”

“You sure on that, Nichols?”

“I can try to take back the kiss. Want me to, sweet girl?” I use the term of endearment I once called her. She doesn’t blanch, and that’s a damn good sign.

She smirks. “Be my guest.”

I kiss her once more, like I’m reversing the lip lock, doing it all in rewind, pulling away ever so slowly, ever so softly, leaving her dazed once more.

Perfect.

If she can drive me this crazy, make me this hard, send the temperature in my blood to beyond incendiary, the least I can do is return the favor.

Judging from her reaction, I’m doing it right.

I gesture from her to me. “Like that. I think that’s how you take back a kiss.”

Chuckling, she nods to the running path. “Ready for me to kick your ass?”

Every competitive bone in my body snaps to attention. “We’ll see about that,” I say, then I smack her pink nylon covered behind.

Her eyes widen, saying oh-no-you-didn’t.

But there’s a twinkle in those baby browns that says the lady might like spanking.

That’s new, and it’s most interesting.

I pencil in a new item on my mental to-do list. Find out how much she likes spanking. I never spanked her in college—just wasn’t part of the repertoire. But judging from her response now, I’m more determined than ever to find out everything she likes in and out of bed.
Google Play: http://bit.ly/2fY0KGf
Amazon Paperback: http://amzn.to/2fDNSRA



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About the Author

A #1 New York Times Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that's hot, sweet and sexy. She lives in California with her family and has plotted entire novels while walking her dogs. With fourteen New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than seventy-five times, and she's sold more than 1.5 million books. In February she'll release The Hot One, a standalone contemporary romance. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter! laurenblakely.com/newsletter



Happy reading,
Michelle

Tuesday, February 21, 2017


Hi everyone,
Several weeks ago I posted an excerpt of Lost In Between by KL Kreig. Today, I am posting my review of Lost In Between because as of yesterday it is now available for purchase from your favorite e-book retailer.

Release Date: January 9, 2017
Publisher: self-pubbed
Source of my e-copy: L. Woods PR
Series: Finding Me #1
Synopsis
We all have one.

A price.

That magic number that will get us to agree to do anything, be anything.

Don’t sit on your gold-plated high horse and say you don’t because you do. Everyone does. Each of us has something we covet enough that we’d sell ourselves to have it.

What’s my tipping point, you ask? Apparently a cool quarter mil will do the trick.

What does one do for 250 large, you wonder? Anything the infamous, gorgeous playboy of Seattle wants. For the next four months I’ll be Shaw Mercer’s arm candy, his beck and call girl, his faux girlfriend. I’ll be his to command, mold, push and pull in any direction he sees fit.

I’ll fight falling into bed with him. I’ll fight falling in love with him even harder. I’ll fail at both. And when my past and present collide in the most unexpected of ways, I’ll learn that while one man’s love for me has never died, the only man’s love I really want will never be mine.

*If dirty-talking, dominant alphas are not your thing, move along. Mature, 18+ only. Book 1 in a 2-part duet.


After reading and loving KL Kreig's Black Swan Affair, I was very much looking forward to reading Lost In Between. I'm always down for a romance with a Pretty Woman vibe so I went into Lost In Between with admittedly higher expectations than I usually would have. While I liked Lost In Between it didn't quite live up to my expectations. It's still an okay read though, especially if you like your romances with a large side of alpha males.
Willow Blackwell is a romance audio book narrator by day, and a rich men's arm candy by night--she's sort of like a prostitute without the sex. She hates being an arm candy, but she needed the extra cash to take care of her mom who is suffering from Alzheimer's. One day she gets rear ended by this super cocky, arrogant guy, but they had an immediate sexual connection.

This super arrogant guy is Shaw Mercer. He is a rich businessman and playboy. He and his best friend/business partner Noah are in a habit of picking up women to have threesomes with (fyi, there were zero threesomes in this book). But, Shaw's dad is planning to run for city mayor and his campaign manager suggested that Shaw clean up his act and get a girlfriend. They are also hoping Shaw's love life will divert the media from looking into his younger siblings' personal lives, and because Shaw loves his family and will do anything for them, he agrees. Instead of choosing one of his marriage-minded ex-girlfriends to be his fake girlfriend during his dad's campaign, Noah suggested Shaw hire this girl he recently met, which will save Shaw from a messy break-up and the possibility of marriage in the end.

Shaw, although skeptical, agrees. The girl Noah had in mind to be Shaw's paid fake girlfriend, of course, was Willow. As soon as Shaw found out that the girl who gave him a permanent boner since he rear ended her will be playing his fake girlfriend he was determined to get her into his bed. Although Willow is permanently wet whenever Shaw was around, she wanted things strictly professional. She had a feeling that if she sleeps with Shaw and let's him get close, he'll break her. She can't afford to let anyone close because she's dealing with a lot of stuff in her personal life and had skeletons in her closet she does not want getting out.

Of course, despite Willow's determination to keep Shaw at arm's length and not end up in his bed, that's exactly where she ended up in. The author definitely knows how to turn up the steam factor because this book was a scorcher! The sexytimes are extremely HOT!

I also liked that Lost In Between is set in the city of Seattle, which was personally a refreshing change from all the NYC-set books I've been reading. Don't get me wrong, I love my NYC books, but it's also nice to "see" another city.

I found the writing to be very readable, and I liked that the story was told in first person dual perspective. I enjoyed knowing what Willow and Shaw were thinking--I didn't prefer one POV over the other. The beginning was a little slow, but necessary as Willow and Shaw's situations and backstories were established. After that, the pacing was pretty steady all the way to the revelation of the big twist in the end and then it ended kinda abruptly. I actually didn't mind the cliffhanger ending because I was ready for the book to finish already--this was a long book at 420 pages.

My biggest issue with this book were the two main characters--Shaw more than Willow. I never really connected with either of them. I sympathized a bit with Willow's situation, but I never felt for her or really rooted for her. She kind of reminded me of Bella Swan in that all of the other characters were drawn to her and fawned over her, but I never understood why. I guess she's supposed to be charismatic, but that never shown through on the page. Her character never felt special to me.

As for Shaw, my biggest issue with him was his irrational jealously. Every time Willow spoke to another man, he gets super jealous and, even though he acknowledges that he's being crazy jealous, violent threats toward these men still flash through his thoughts. Irrational jealously is not sexy. I never warmed to Shaw's character. The only thing I liked about him was how he'd do anything for his troubled youngest sister Annabelle, and how protective he was of her. But, besides that, I found the other men, like his best friend Noah and Willow's ex-boyfriend Reid, more interesting. I found myself wanting to read about them rather than Shaw.

Another thing that made me side-eye this book was the looong passages the author included in this book from her other books (and one from another author). Like I mentioned, Willow is an audiobook narrator so we had a few scenes where she was narrating a book, and included in these scenes are these unnecessary pages-long excerpts of what she was narrating, which I thought was a bit of a shameless self-promotion on the author's part of her other books. **shrugs**

So, while I didn't enjoy Lost In Between as much as I did the author's previous book Black Swan Affair, I did like it well enough. I'm definitely intrigued to read the second book in the series to see how Willow and Shaw work things out after the twist in the end. If you like the Pretty Woman trope, a whole lot of alpha in your book boyfriend, and enjoy some panty-melting sexytimes, I suggest looking into Lost In Between.


About the Author
Author KL Kreig
As a USA Today Bestselling author, I write stories that are deeply emotional with flawed characters, because humans ARE flawed and if we read about perfect characters living in their perfect world, first of all, snoozer, but secondly, we never experience the gratification of redemption.

Outside of writing, I’m just a regular ol’ Midwest girl who likes Game of Thrones and am obsessed with Modern Family and The Goldbergs. I run, I eat, I run, I eat. It’s a vicous cycle. I love carbs, but there’s love-hate relationship with my ass and thighs. Mostly hate. I like a good cocktail (oh hell…who am I kidding? I love any cocktail). I’m a huge creature of habit, but I’ll tell you I’m flexible. I read every single day and if I don’t get a chance…watch the hell out. My iPad and me: BFFs. I’m direct and I make no apologies for it. I swear too much. I love alternative music and in my next life I want to be a bad-ass female rocker. I hate, hate, hate spiders, telemarketers, liver, acne, winter and loose hairs that fall down my shirt (don’t ask, it’s a thing).


Happy reading,
Michelle

Friday, February 17, 2017

Throne of Truth by Pepper Winters | Cover Reveal

Friday, February 17, 2017 with
Labels:
Hi everyone,
School and work has been kicking me in the butt this semester. They've taken over my life and blogging has taken a back seat... for now. I just have to get through this semester and then I'm all good.

Anyway, today, I have a cover reveal for my most anticipated release this month, Throne of Truth by Pepper Winters. If you got a chance to read my review of the first book in the duology, Crown of Lies, you all know how much I loved it and that I'm dying to find out how everything will conclude in Throne of Truth.

Here it is...


TWO YEARS
Since my life changed for the second time and not necessarily for the better. Two years since I traded prison bars for streets and hunted a runaway who I’d met in an alley.

TWO DAYS
Since I forgot how to lie, woke to fists, and chased after the girl who’d been stolen from me.

TWO HOURS
To save her, rescue her, keep my lies intact. She looks at me full of hate. I look at her full of confession.

TWO MINUTES
For our relationship to switch from mutual dislike to floundering with unknowns. I’ve hurt her. Now, she’s hurt me. I guess we’re even.

TWO SECONDS
For her to listen, to see, to finally know who I am. The answer comes with hardship. The answer isn’t what she wants to hear.

TWO BREATHS
For me to walk out the door.

TWO HEARTBEATS
For it all to be over.
EEeeeeepppp!!! So excited!!! Throne of Truth is also available for pre-order.


Happy reading,
Michelle

Tuesday, February 7, 2017



Publisher: self-pubbed
Release Date: January 31, 2017
Source of my copy: TRSOR/author
Series: Truth and Lies Duet #1
Synopsis
“I met the man I wanted. But then he vanished, and a new man claimed me instead. My father approved, my colleagues congratulated, and behind closed doors, I was bedded by a stranger.”

Noelle Charlston lives a fairy-tale life: a doting father, a powerful job, and a future blessed with financial security.

However, two meetings with two men changes her happy existence forever. First, she meets the man who makes her heart sing. Three years later, she meets the man who makes her blood quiver.

Broken-hearted from a teenage romance, Noelle’s freedom is no longer hers. It belongs to the stranger her father believes is her perfect match. The stranger who pulls his lies over everyone he touches.
Including her.

Seduced and manipulated, Noelle gives into the mysterious Penn Everett. The lies he spins, the truth he hides, the mystery he weaves—it’s all enough to slowly erode the woman she is and turn her into something else.
Until her past collides with her present.
And it’s her turn to lie.

To everyone… including herself.



Ever since I heard of Crown of Lies, I've wanted to pick it up. Not only because I've been wanting to read a novel by Pepper Winters (she comes highly recommended from my fellow-smut loving friends), but because the synopsis really caught my attention. 

And, yup, it was soooo fuckin' good. I needed Throne of Truth yesterday!

The story is told entirely in Noelle "Elle" Charlston's first-person POV. She was the sole heiress of Belle Elle (a chain department store like Macys), and from when she was a young girl she's always known that one day she'll take over the reigns from her father. By the time she graduated high school, Belle Elle was her whole life. But, on the night of her nineteenth birthday, feeling reckless and wanting to feel like a normal girl for once, she left Belle Elle to explore the city. What started as a night of wonder and new experiences ended in a nightmare when she found herself cornered in a dark alley with two thugs. All seemed hopeless when a mysterious man appeared and rescued her just in time. She ended up spending a magical night with him, until the police caught up with them. Elle ended up back with her father, while the mysterious man was taken away in handcuffs.

Fast forward three years later, and Elle had tried to push that nightmarish night with the thugs from her mind, but she also couldn't forget about that mysterious man she called Nameless who saved her. She tried to find him again, but couldn't find a trace of him. Meanwhile, her father had recently met a man named Penn Everett, who set his sights on Elle. Penn is the opposite of the mysterious man of Elle's past that she admit she had fallen for despite their brief time together. But, Penn's dogged pursuit of Elle, her father's easy acceptance of their relationship, and Elle's reluctant attraction to him, didn't erase the fact that there was something slightly off about Penn. Could he possibly be connected to the events that happened three years ago in that dark alley? What secrets was he hiding? And why does he look so familiar...?

Like I mentioned, I've been wanting to pick up Ms. Winters's books for a while but they've always been described as "very dark" which I equated to "sinister" and "BDSM", which was just not my cup of tea. I was happy to find that while there were dark moments and scenes, it was NOT the creepy, sexually overt ropes and dungeons type of dark.

I absolutely loved Elle. She's smart, capable, and even though she was surrounded by men, she held her own and acted like the capable businesswoman who runs a multi-dollar department store was supposed to be. She did not take Penn's alpha bullshit lying down, and every demand he made, she asserted herself right back. I really liked watching her character grow throughout the novel.

As for the men, Nameless was only there for a little while and we didn't really learn much about him and Penn, like Elle, I wasn't quite sure what to make of him. There were flashes of good that shown through, but he's keeping a lot of secrets. I couldn't quite swoon over him because there's the potential that he's not who I think he was despite my theories about who he may really be. I am DYING to know all the answers about Penn and Nameless though, because they're most definitely connected.

I was engaged throughout my reading of Crown of Lies. I love that it's set in New York City. I love the high tension and the mystery throughout the story that kept me glued to the pages, and I couldn't turn the pages fast enough. And I love Elle's character. She was definitely the best part--I love her mix of powerful CEO, and vulnerability without being a doormat. My only gripe with her was why didn't she take some self-defense classes? 

And for the steam factor, this one was HOT, like, turn your AC up high hot, but there was nothing out of the ordinary if you read a lot of sexy, steamy romance.

Yes, it ends in an awful cliffhanger, but Throne of Truth comes out in about three weeks so the wait isn't that long (although still excruciating, because after that ending, I am dying to get my hands on the Throne of Truth). I highly recommend Crown of Lies (however, if you have triggers for sexual assault, you'll want to skip this one), for a darker-themed and twistier kind of romance read.


About the author
Pepper Winters wears many roles. Some of them include writer, reader, sometimes wife. She loves dark, taboo stories that twist with your head. The more tortured the hero, the better, and she constantly thinks up ways to break and fix her characters. Oh, and sex... her books have sex.

She loves to travel and has an amazing, fabulous hubby who puts up with her love affair with her book boyfriends.

STALK Pepper: Website | Pinterest | Facebook | Twitter | Blog | Goodreads


Pre-order Throne of Truth here.
If you've read Crown of Lies, I'm dying to talk theories of who Nameless is and what really happened to him. Chat with me in the comments!