Review: Who We Are by Shanora WIlliams

Monday, September 30, 2013

Who We Are (FireNine 2)
By Shanora Williams
Release Date:
Genre: New Adult
Rating: 4 Glasses of Wine


I thought I had gone through something much worse. I thought the abuse and pain from my mom and step-dad was bad, but this? This heartache? This pain? This depression? This gut-wrenching, heartbreaking moment? This knotted up feeling in my gut, the tightness in my throat, the ache in my chest? It was slowly but surely killing me.”
Eight months.
That’s how long it’s been since Eliza last saw Gage and they both feel as if they don’t deserve one another’s forgiveness. He screwed up. She walked away without looking back. They’ll try and make up all the time they’ve lost with one another, that is until they’re facing the choices of either going their separate ways, or hanging on and fighting for dear life.
The fights will be endless. They heartache will be real. The demons will return, and they won’t back down without a fight.
There are some who will do anything to keep true love apart, and those same people will dig deep into their demonic ways until Eliza and Gage are literally no more.
Can Eliza and Gage overcome it all? Will they be able to face the true demons that are seeking to destroy them? Or will they just forget about everything they’ve worked so hard for and go their separate ways?
Sometimes you have to go through struggles in order to reach an ultimate point of peace… but will 
their struggle be worth it?

Fall's Review
So first and foremost go read Who He Is if you have not already. I also reviewed (and loved) that book! 

Who We Are picks up 8 months after Ellie leaves Gage on his knees in a parking lot. She must be some girl to bring a man like Gage Grendel to his knees! You know what I'm sayin' ;) A lot happens in this book that I felt were big issues that got put on fast forward. 

First Gage loses his balls......okay, not really but he seems to go from this big, tough, sexy rock star in Who He Is to this weak, pussy whipped boy in Who We Are. He's being black mailed and instead of trying to stand up for himself and protect those he loves, he gives in to the demands, plays the "game" and loses in the process. I was excited that we got to meet Kristina and get to know her better (she was briefly mentioned in Who He Is). Gage is pissed when he first sees Ellie again. He sings about heartache and talks about having his heart ripped from his chest. Ellie knows that she deserves the way he feels and is not looking for forgiveness. 

“This girl… I know she’s here right now. She really broke my fucking heart. I fucked up; she let me go. I opened up to her; she closed off on me. Has anyone in this crowd ever been in love?” “I want her to know tonight how bad she fucked me over—how hurt I was when I watched her leave. Not only did she break my heart, but she took the pieces with her.”- Gage

Second Ellie grows a backbone .......YAY!  Even though she's found her spine she is still her insecure self: battling with her inner dialogue "I still love him, but I cant let anything tear me away from my dreams." She wants to make something of herself....great! But she is afraid being in a relationship will steer her off many of y'all went to college, dated a man AND still graduated? *raises hand*
Ok, rant over!

Ellie gets a new job, (her dream job) but little does she know that Gage works very closely with her new boss. She not only stands up to Gage repeatedly but puts him in his place a few times as well. You go Girl! She knows she is good at what she does and doesn't take shit from anyone! 

Third....three words: MontanaDeed and Roy! Hot Damn!!!! These three men made the book for me!  I Montana!!!!! We get to know each of the guys more intimately and learn a little about their skeletons. I am hoping and praying, *hint, hint*, we get books for each of them. When Gage goes off the deep end Montana, Deed and Roy are the ones that fight to get Ellie to see what Gage really needs. 

Ellie and Gage still have demons and are still VERY insecure with themselves. They must over come their individual insecurities before they can even attempt to become a couple. What do you do when your world starts to crumble around you? How do you prioritize what is most important in your life? 

“It’s so fucking hard to stay away from you, Eliza”- Gage
“Every single morning, I smell him. Even when I’ve changed the sheets, I smell him. When I roll onto the side of the bed he was on, I smell him. I can almost feel him.” - Eliza

 I really did enjoy this book!! I honestly don't think there is ANYTHING that Shanora has written that I have not liked! I gave Who We Are by Shanora Williams 4 glasses of White Zin. I love angst with a happy ending! I loved Montana, Deed and Roy! I am crossing my fingers that Shanora gives us more of each of them! Until next time as Ash would say, "Keep your wine cold and your books hot!"

Shanora Williams was born and raised in Matthews, North Carolina. She's the author of the New Adult series, OBTAINED and the Best Selling New Adult novel, Hard to Resist. Her upcoming mature New-Adult/Adult novel, Who He Is, will be released in July of 2013.

When she's not writing, she's happily reading or watching cartoons like the big kid she is. She has a wonderful family that you will hear her brag and talk about all of the time. Whenever she just wants to get away from the words for a while, she'll spend some time with her loved ones, eat gummy bears, or drown in Coca-Cola and anything else caffeinated.

Book Trailer: 

1500 Like Giveaway!!

Saturday, September 28, 2013


Our Facebook page just hit 1500 Likes!!!

With a little help from our Author and Blogger friends we are hosting a HUGE giveaway as our way to say Thank You for following our little blog. Four months ago we started White Zin Bookends with no idea that it would take off as quickly as it did. We appreciate each and every one of you! Cheers and happy reading! 
~Aly, Ash, and Fall

Review: Endre by S.T. Bende *Giveaway*

Friday, September 27, 2013

By S.T. Bende
Release: September 9, 2013
Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Entranced Publishing, Rush
Amazon | B&N | KoboGoodreads
Rating: A Whole Bottle of Wine

Sometimes, finding your destiny means doing the exact opposite of what The Fates have planned.

Winning the heart of an immortal assassin was a dream come true for Kristia Tostenson. Now she’s knee deep in wedding plans, goddess lessons, and stolen kisses. But her decision to become immortal could end in heartbreak -- not only for Kristia, but for the god who loves her. Because while Ull would do anything to protect his bride, even the God of Winter is powerless against the Norse apocalypse. Ragnarok is coming. And the gods aren’t even close to ready.


Aly's Review: 
I have a not so shocking confession: I am obsessed with S.T. Bende's Elsker Saga. I love it...hardcore! I raved about it. I championed Kristia's WINNING wedding dress. I even used my absolute favorite GIF on Goodreads begging for more.

 photo tumblr_m7e6y34ICe1rysmy3o1_250_zps9e7a370e.gif

And finally S.T. gave me more Ull and Kristia in the form of Endre (Elsker Saga #2)!

Endre is a fantastic follow up to Elsker that simultaneously left me satisfied and longing for more. Ull and Kristia have gone from the love struck college couple we met in Elsker to a married couple fighting for their lives during the Norse apocalypse. This book had it ALL for me. Love, action, adventure, drama...really my list of nouns could go on for miles. I adored everything about this book.

Ull, *sigh* for someone who gives me zero "dirty", I sure do have the hots for that, Norse god. He is romantic, and sweet, and no matter how hard he tries he can't resist his protective "alpha male" tendencies. And Kristia, she never ceases to amaze me. She is fierce and loyal, putting her own safety on the line to protect those she loves, especially Ull. Together, they make up a team that ultimately...wait a minute! I'm not spoiling Endre for you! You are just going to have to read this one for yourself.

As expected S.T. Bende has delivered again. This New Adult book swept me off my feet and into a fantasy land that I never wanted to leave. She flawlessly blended Norse mythology and a heart stopping romance into a book you never knew you wanted to read. Elsker and Endre have definitely made my "Must Read" list and I urge everyone to pick them up. You will not be disappointed. While I am currently still on my happy little Endre high, I know it won't be long before I start begging for more from the Elsker gang. *Cough*Gunnar*cough, cough* I am giving Endre, 5 HUGE glasses of wine!

About the Author:

Before finding domestic bliss in suburbia, ST Bende lived in Manhattan Beach (became overly fond of Peet’s Coffee) and Europe… where she became overly fond of McVities cookies. Her love of Scandinavian culture and a very patient Norwegian teacher inspired the books of The Elsker Saga (TUR, ELSKER and ENDRE). She is an audio co-host of #NALitChat, and helps compile indie new releases for the USA Today HEA blog. She hopes her characters make you smile and that one day, pastries will be considered a health food.

Find ST on Twitter, her blog, or send her an e-mail. While you’re at it, introduce yourself to @UllMyhr -- when he’s not saving the cosmos from dark elves, he loves meeting new friends. Especially the human kind.
Author social media links

Twitter: or @stbende
Email: stbende(at)gmail(dot)com

Endre Excerpt:

“What do you want to know?” Ull lowered his sunglasses lazily and eyed me with a look that made my insides burn.
“Well,” I paused. “Uh… what am I supposed to do if I’m attacked?”
“You mean if this happened?” Ull launched himself off the chaise, wrapping one arm around my waist and dragging me across the beach. He cradled me in his arms and landed in the froth where the ocean met the shore.
“See? I’m totally defenseless?” I gazed up at him, my back pressed firmly against the wet sand. He hovered over me, supporting his weight on his forearms.
“I am afraid you are.” Piercing blue eyes locked in on mine. Between the depth of his stare and the heat from his abs, I forgot everything else.
“Um …” I bit my bottom lip.
Ull tilted his head to one side, a small smile playing at one corner of his mouth. “Now what did you want to know?”
“I--” I broke off as a wave washed over us. The warm saltwater lapped up to my waist then retreated, leaving a film of sand over my legs.
“You were asking me how to defend yourself?” Dangit, it was hard to focus with Ull’s dripping body pressing against mine. Yes, I wanted whatever it was I’d asked about. Self-defense, right. But there was something else I wanted more.
I bent my knee and twined my calf around Ull’s. I shifted my hips just an inch and stared into those endless blue eyes. They sparkled in the sunlight. My arms were trapped beneath his torso, so I turned my palms upward to touch the spot where his chest met his shoulders. It was so smooth, so firm, and so very, very warm. My eyes never left his as I moved my thumb along the line of his shoulder, down his biceps and down to the crook of his arm. I drew a slow circle inside his elbow and Ull blinked.
“Kristia,” he whispered.
“Yes?” I tried to reach up to stroke the stubble lining his square chin, but my arms were pinned.
“You are not trying to defend yourself.”
“So?” I raised my head and kissed his jaw. “Maybe I don’t feel like fighting you off.”
“Mmm,” Ull closed his eyes as I kissed my way up to his ear. “So if someone came after you, you would just let them do this?”
He swiftly rolled onto his back, forcing me on top of him. He shoved his fingers in my hair and tugged gently, pulling my head back. He kept the other hand just above the bottom of my bikini, firmly pressing my hips into his. I squirmed against the hold, trying to find a way out of his grip. Though I tactically had the upper hand, I couldn’t move.
“Well I wouldn’t let just anyone do this.”
“I should hope not,” he growled softly. He raked his teeth along my throat and paused at the hollow of my neck. “Because this could end very badly for you.” He ran his tongue along my collarbone. I shivered.
In a lightning-quick move, Ull flipped me onto my back and pinned my arms above my head with one hand. I gazed adoringly at the fierce assassin glowering over me. “And this. What would you do if someone did this to you?”
“Uh,” I blinked. If I told Ull what I really wanted to do right now, I’d turn every possible shade of crimson.
“Focus Kristia.” Ull stared at me. “What would you do if you were trapped?”
“I… uh… I’d,” I blushed. “You seriously want me to fight you off?”
“If you are so bent on going through with this little exercise, then yes. Give it your best shot. And then I believe, you promised to pay me for the lesson.”
“Gladly.” I narrowed my eyes and wrenched my arm as hard as I could. It didn’t budge. I tried again but it was futile.
“You are outmaneuvered and I am twice your weight. Try something else.” Ull commanded.
I threw my shoulder into his chest and tried to roll to one side.
“You cannot out-force me. Look at the difference in our masses. Think tactically, Kristia. What can you do that will debilitate me?”
My eyes widened. “You don’t want me to--”
“I want you to find a way to get me off you. Do what you have to do.”
I closed my eyes and raised a knee to his groin. Ull groaned and rolled off me.
“I’m so sorry! You said to--”
He raised a hand and waved at me, turning away.
“I’m sorry,” I repeated.
“That was good.” He rolled back with a grimace. “But if someone is bent on capturing you, they will come back for more. And quickly. Your next step should be to run.”
“If you want I can get some ice for--”
“Run, darling.” It was a threat. “Now.”

 We have an excerpt from Ull's POV!
Take it away ST...

Hei hei! I’m ST Bende, and I adore IndyCar racing, McVities cookies, and a certain blonde haired Swede from True Blood. 
White Zin Bookends has been so sweet to my imaginary friends and me since we “met” during the NA Crush Tourney, and I’m excited to share an Elsker Saga special with y’all. This scene is written from Ull’s perspective on the day he met Kristia. Ull is the Norse God of Winter, and in Elsker he decides to take a break from Asgard to study at Cardiff University in Wales. In this scene, he takes care of some Asgardian responsibilities before he takes off for the British Museum -- where he meets Kristia for the first time. The full version is posted over in the Elsker Street Team Facebook page, so if you want to read more of Ull’s perspective leave a comment letting me know you’d like to join the team. For now, I hope you enjoy seeing a bit of Elsker from Ull’s POV! And a huge thank you to White Zin Bookends for being such a huge support of the Saga. Jeg elsker deg, y’all.

“Now,” I gave the command through my earpiece.
“You sure, mate?” Gunnar panted from the other end of the line. He was on the ground in the forest of Svartalfheim, and I was ensconced in my London home. But I distinctly heard pounding feet through my laptop. Gunnar was on the move.
“I am sure. Three. Two. One. Fire.”
“Arugh!” Gunnar’s battle cry rang out and twenty identical sounds followed. Though I was realms away I could visualize the scene. Gunnar would turn first, followed by his flank. The first line would fire crossbows in two… one… there they were. The whoosh of arrows was followed by anguished shrieks. Then came the impact. Shrieks became gurgles as the victims choked on their own blood. The bodies hit the ground. Seven? No, eight dark elves must have fallen.
I leaned back in my chair and stared at the ceiling. “Second line in three. Two. One. Now.”
“Charge!” Gunnar ordered. The thunder of ten assassins boomed from the speakers. They were on the move.
“And strike … now,” I said calmly.
“Arugh!” Gunnar cried again. Now I heard the clang of battle swords. Mostly broadswords from the sound of the pitch, but I knew at least two members carried rapiers. They ran cleanup.  
I waited until I heard ten bodies fall.  “Any of ours?” I asked.
“None, mate.” I could practically hear Gunnar’s grin. He lived for this stuff. I loathed it.
“Check the bodies. Dismember them, just in case. Heads in the lock box.” It was standard protocol for an uprising. They were coming closer together these days; a near sure sign Ragnarok was close. Odin collected the heads for research.
“Wouldn’t think of skipping that part,” Gunnar chuckled. “Anything else, Captain?”
I rubbed my forehead, kneading the deep line that seemed fixed between my eyes these days. Two taps at the keyboard and a new screen came up. “Hold on Gunnar.” I squinted. Ten hot spots illuminated the northwest quadrant of my screen.  “There are more.”
“I doubt it. My airborne team scouted the forest before we dropped in. It’s clear.”
“Gunnar, I am looking at ten bodies in--” I stared harder. “Is there a cave behind the heavy foliage at your eleven o’clock?”
“Possibly. Why?”
“Lock and load, friend. You have company.” I typed again and the screen zoomed in on the cave. I switched the view from heat source to satellite. “Eight more dark elves and two … trolls?”
“No way, man. They hate each other.”
“I know.” I scratched the two-day stubble on my chin. I could not be bothered with shaving at a time like this. Three rebellions in four days was unprecedented. Even for Svartalfheim. “No matter. Kill them all.”
“You don’t think they’re the wives and kids, do you?” Gunnar whispered.
“Does it matter?” I closed my eyes. I hated this part of the job most of all. It was why I refused to continue as a ground assassin. I was purely tactical now, and only in dire situations. But Odin’s orders had been explicit -- no survivors. “Take them out.”
“But Ull--”
“Do it, Gunnar.” I rubbed my forehead again and tried to ignore the pounding.
“Aye aye. Lock and load, Team One. Team Two, surround that.” He must have pointed. I watched the screen and saw ten bodies circle the cave. “On my call, Team One enter. No survivors. Three. Two. One. Now.”
I closed my eyes when I heard the screaming. Arrows pierced flesh with a ripping sound, and I heard two distinctly female voices crying. I cringed. This was absolutely the worst part of protecting Asgard. The senseless killing.
Only it wasn’t senseless. Something was bringing these normally warring races together against us. And until we got to the bottom of things, Odin was unyielding in his determination to obliterate any threat to the realm. Even if it went against everything we stood for.
“It’s over, mate.” Gunnar’s voice came through two minutes later. He sounded exhausted. “Are we clear?”
I studied the screen again. There was nothing amiss in the satellite view, and when I switched back to heat view, I counted twenty bodies.  “Are all your men accounted for? I see twenty live sources.”
“Hold on,” Gunnar paused as he counted. “Yep. All here.”
“Were there any children?” I held my breath.
“No. Though the trolls couldn’t have been more than a few hundred years old. Juveniles, but old enough to fight.” Gunnar sounded detached.
Veldig bra.” Very well. I studied the screen one more time. “You are clear. Decapitate the bodies, call for Heimdall and open the Bifrost. Speak to Odin on your way back. I will run debriefing tomorrow.” I clicked the screen and the images disappeared.
“Aren’t you coming back to Asgard now?” Gunnar asked.
“No. I need to clear my head for a while.”
“Fair enough. Sorry I had to drag you into this,” Gunnar apologized. “Anders still hasn’t stopped bleeding, or we’d have used him.”
“I understand. I cannot hide in Midgard forever, right?”
“Well you are the tactical go-to man. But I know how you feel about this part of the job. Sorry again.”
“Water under the Bifrost.” I shrugged. “Get the heads to Odin before they dry out. And tell the team I said ‘Well done.’”
“High praise from the mighty God of Winter,” Gunnar laughed.
“Shove it, Gunnar. Ull out.” I closed the screen and stared out the window. Mortal children played in the park across the street. Adults threw balls to dogs, who leaped joyfully, unaware of the absolute destruction that had just occurred. All orchestrated by me, just a hundred yards away. Mother would have been so proud.
I shoved my chair back and stretched my legs as I stood. I tilted my head from side to side, taking pleasure in the cracking sound. Two knots down, seven hundred to go. I pushed my chair under the desk, straightened the papers to the left of my laptop, and picked up my glass. I carried it upstairs and filled it again. After I drank, I put my palms on both sides of the sink and let my head drop. In the past four days, I had orchestrated the deaths of one hundred and eight insurgents, at least two of whom had been women. I was a monster.
I had to get out of here. With clipped strides, I crossed to my bedroom, pulled on a sweater, and jogged down two flights of stairs. I grabbed my keys and my wallet from the basket by the door and locked up.
I had no idea where I was going, but I could not be alone.

Wicked Thing by Angeline Kace *Giveaway*

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Wicked Thing 
by Angeline Kace

Carmyn Rafferty witnessed the aftermath of her mother's affair. She learned at a young age not to trust anyone. Especially not your spouse. So she's planned. She's planned every detail of her life: who her husband will be, what their careers will be, what their lives will be like. All to avoid the pain of infidelity.

Dallas Brown lives a life all his own. He doesn't do relationships, he doesn't care what anyone thinks of him, and he doesn't live up to anyone's expectations but his own.

When Carmyn's fiancé cheats on her, it sends her into a whirlwind of one-night stands with the most infamous player on campus. She can't seem to stay away from this tough guy and his dangerous motorcycle. Everything about him is the complete opposite of who she'd planned to fall in love with: tattoos, dark stubble along his jawline, and hair that brushes his shoulders.

As Dallas and Carmyn begin to fall deeper and deeper into each other, they learn that love can truly be a
wicked, wicked thing.

About the Author:

Angeline is a Scorpio living in the Rocky Mountains with her husband and dogs. She loves all things paranormal, believes ghosts are real, werewolves aren't, and vampires? Definitely real! At least in the Vampire Born world they are.

Author Links:

Rose of Thorne By Mia Michelle

Rose of Thorne 
by Mia Michelle

When a drunk driver tragically orphans Skylar Rose at the age of sixteen, she leaves her dreams behind and takes on the daunting task of helping her elderly grandmother raise her young sister. While other girls her age were living a typical carefree life, she was picking up double shifts at a local cafĂ© and struggling to pay the bills. 

Always putting her sister’s needs and school first, Skylar has never had time to date or develop relationships. Now a senior in college, she has her sights set on an amazing internship opportunity. The last thing she needed was for a sexy distraction like Sebastian Thorne to walk into her life. 

Sebastian Thorne had been an entitled and reckless nineteen year old when he got behind the wheel of his new sports car that night. When his night of indulgence goes tragically wrong, Sebastian hesitantly turns to the one person, he knows can make everything go away…the one person he hates ..his father.

Now twenty-six, Sebastian is the young enigmatic and powerful CEO of his late father’s design company, Thorne Enterprises. With both millions in the bank and a new woman on his arm almost every night, the world never knew the dark secret he carried inside. Still plagued with nightmares from the night of that horrific accident and having to leave the beautiful girl behind, Sebastian vows to find the one that haunts his dreams. Sometimes the choice of revisiting our past opens the door to a future that we never thought possible.

Haunted by their past, these two want nothing more than to have their life given back to them. But what do you do when the person who gave you back your life, was the very one that took it from you in the first place?

* BOOK 2 THORNELESS will follow VERY VERY SOON!! Contains sexual content and abusive situations. Recommended for readers 18+ years.
Author Links

Mia fell in love with the literary world at a very young age and began putting her active imagination to pen and paper by the age of six. Over the years, she has filled up numerous shelves with her notebooks and journals of her favorite stories. Twelve years ago, Mia began drafting The Thorne Series and through encouragement of a close friend, decided to finally take the leap of faith to bring her dream to life. She openly admits to having a hopeless infatuation with her Kindle and suffers from the one-click book addiction (No intervention required). 

Mia is currently a stay at home mom who has mastered the fine art of making a PB&J sandwich in between laundry and shuttling kids to ballet and swimming. In her spare time (“What spare time?” She laughs), she enjoys photography, traveling, and having a girls night out with her pals. She enjoys the simple things in life, such as sleeping more than 3 hours per night and 10 minute showers without being interrupted by children yelling “mommy” from the other side of the bathroom door. 

Mia Michelle resides in Tennessee with her soul mate and husband of 18 years and their 2 beautiful young children. She is currently working on her Masters in Counseling and drafting her new series. 

Cover Reveal: A Late Thaw by Ana Blaze *Giveaway*

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Author: Ana Blaze
Publisher: Entranced Publishing
Imprint: Kissed
Genre: Contemporary romance
Release Date: November 11th 2013

The town’s too small for Kiley St. Claire’s reappearance to be a surprise, still seeing her hits Cole Thomas like a punch to the gut. She ripped his heart apart when she turned to ice and ran away all those years ago. Now that she’s back, Cole’s going to say his piece and move on.
Even if she does look damn good in that uniform.
Kiley St. Claire is back in the small town of Barrett, Vermont, for one reason and one reason only: to earn some cash so she can survive her final semester of grad school. She’s not there for the sexy Christmas tree farmers.
Even the one who once held her heart.


Ana Blaze is giving away a $15 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card (winner’s choice) and an e-copy of her contemporary romance novella THE BEST MAN.

About the Author:

Ana lives just outside Washington DC with her very supportive husband and three rather demanding cats. She loves the ocean, Indian food, Ikea, and cooking. Ana admits to watching too much television and she swears that someday she’s going to learn how to play the guitar resting on the bookshelf in her office.

Author Social Media Links:

Heaven's Sinners by Bella Jewel *Giveaway*

Heaven's Sinners Front Cover (1)
Title: Heaven’s Sinners (The MC Sinners #2)
Author: Bella Jewel
Release Date: September 25
Genre: Biker Erotica

Spike knows tragedy, he knows that feelings are better left hidden. He refuses to put his heart out there again, it's a pain he's not willing to ever let himself feel. He's got a mission. He's got a goal. Nothing is going to get in his way. He will seek his revenge. But then there's Ciara, the sister of his deceased wife. She's beautiful and damned determined to throw herself into his life in hopes they can reform an old friendship, but Spike won't hear of it, and Ciara refuses to give up. Who will win the battle of wills?

“Can’t fix that, can fix this.” He leans down, and his lips are on mine before I can protest. My mouth opens as a strangled gasp leaves it. My body flinches, and a flood of warmth travels through my veins, making my entire body feel like it’s on fire. I shudder as he presses his mouth harder against mine. His lips are soft and full, his body large and firm as he presses himself against me. My hands are limp beside me, I can’t move, I’m like a rag doll in his arms. His tongue finds mine, and fireworks explode in my head, I’m almost sure I see stars. Then suddenly, my hands come to life, and I thrust them into his hair, tugging him closer. My mouth is devouring his, my tongue dancing with his in hungry, angry strokes. He growls, and presses a hand to my lower back, pressing my body up against his hard, aching erection. I untangle one of my hands from his hair, and run it down his firm back. I slip it under his shirt, and feel his hot, hard skin. It’s taut, and his muscles bunch as I slide my fingers up, feeling every inch of his muscled flesh. Then his mouth is off mine, and I’m stumbling backwards. He’s reeling backwards just as quickly, his eyes confused. He’s panting so heavily I can see his chest rising and falling rapidly. His eyes are wild, like he’s just made a huge mistake. I press my fingers to my swollen lips, did that just happen? Did Spike just…kiss me? I’ve never been kissed like that in my entire life, not once. That kiss, it was a kiss of passion. It was real, beautiful, gut wrenching, soul shattering…but mostly, it was mind fucking. What did it mean? Spike’s fists are clenched, and his eyes are a mix of anger and lust. “Now we’re even. Get on the bike,” he rasps.  

  Bella Jewel is an Aussie girl through and through. She spent her life in Western Australia, growing up in many different areas of the state. She now currently lives in Perth with her husband, children and mass amounts of pets. She's crazy, fun, outgoing and friendly. Writing is her passion, she started at the young age of 18 but finally got the courage up to publish, and her first novel Hell's Knights will be released in August 2013.  


Heaven's Sinners Full Jacket
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Playing With Her Heart by Lauren Blakely *Giveaway*

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Playing with Her Heart Book Blitz Banner



 From the NYT & USA Today Bestselling romance author, a sizzling and addictive story of a woman with a broken past and the man who can't fight his attraction to her... Twenty-three year old rising theater star Jill McCormick has built a life out of pretending. Pretending she's happy, pretending she's not haunted by the dark secret that shattered her world six years ago. But then she comes face to face with her new director - sexy, sophisticated, possessive, all-alpha Davis Milo. He tries to resist the actress he's cast, but the attraction between them is too powerful, and soon their private rehearsals spiral into new, forbidden territory. The passionate connection, the intense chemistry is undeniable, and it hits them anywhere, and everywhere - in the theater, on the piano, in the limo, in the restaurant...But the tragedy in Jill's past stands between them. Davis has walls too, so they can either face their fears together, or risk the deepest love and greatest passion either has ever felt...

  Deleted Scene from PLAYING WITH HER HEART 

 Explanation from Lauren: This deleted scene takes place in chapter 15 prior to the Jill and Davis’ second private rehearsal, which will be more familiar to readers as before the “piano scene.” I had originally written this scene where Jill rehearses with Patrick, and Davis’ reaction to it. But I then decided that I’d rather show Jill and Davis rehearsing. Plus, I felt readers already knew and understood the depths of Davis’ jealousy at this point and that the additional scene showing it wasn’t necessary. I also nixed it because I decided that Patrick was not falling in love with Jill, as Davis surmises from this scene. But, just for fun, here it is from the cutting room floor!!! xoxo Lauren

 Thirty minutes later, I am coiled full of tension from watching Patrick run his hands through Jill’s hair, from the way she responds, leaning her head back into him, from how she breathily whispers one of the last lines in the scene, “it feels so good,” her microphone taking the words on a trip around the whole theater, up to the proscenium arch and two boxes and back. “End scene,” Shannon calls out. I run a hand across my chin roughly. Steel myself, then stand up, walk to the edge of the stage, place a palm against the floorboards as Jill and Patrick look at me expectantly. “That’s a great start. Now, Patrick what I want you to work on next is really capturing the change in Paolo. This scene is the moment when he starts to soften around her. When he shifts from being the hard ass teacher and into the tender lover he will become. Look for those moments in between the words,” I say, giving him the full, honest truth of what his performance needs, even though if pains every bone in my body to instruct him like this. He nods several times, taking it in. He’s a pro, and I know he’ll knock this scene out of the park as he always does. He doesn’t command his name on the marquee for nothing. The man can sell tickets for a reason. Then I turn to Jill. She’s nibbling on her lower lip nervously. She stops when she meets my gaze. I do my best to give away nothing as I talk to her. “For Ava, I really see this moment as the one when it clicks for her. That she’s been confused and unsure for so long about Paolo. Is he just the professor? Is he merely a difficult teacher? Or is there something more? But then they are in the studio working and her hair is a mess and full of paint, and her hands are covered in it, and this is when she understands not only that he has feelings for her, but that she’s falling hard for him too.” “Thank you. That makes sense,” she says, like a good student. “Are we going okay on the blocking?” Patrick asks. “It’s a little unformed at this point.” “You’re doing fine. We’ll get it finalized soon. For now, run it again,” I say, and I return to my seat, feeling absolutely spent from having to tell the two of them to show me more of them falling in love. Another rounds later, they’re closer to nailing it, and I’m sure I’ll knock the punching bag from its chains the next time I’m at the gym. When Patrick asks to do the scene one final time, I’m about to explode with a resounding “No.” Instead, I keep it all inside, as I manage through gritted teeth, “Of course let’s get it right.” I watch one final time, even though it’s fucking eating away at me to see him touch her. Before he even starts the scene, he looks at her with softness in his eyes, and and I know he’s starting to fall for her too. That he’s not merely acting. That he’s only playing a part. The two are starting to blend, and this is why actors all over the world fall for actors. This is why you hear stories of movie set romances, because they aren’t stories. They’re true. There is little, I imagine, more intoxicating than pretending to be in love with someone. After a while, reality and fiction bleed over, and you fall in love for real. When the scene ends, the stage manager calls take five and Patrick tucks a strand of her hair behind her ear, flashing her that matinee idol smile of his that melts women. I swallow, close my eyes, clench my fists. Selfishly, I had hoped it would all be unrequited. I had hoped it was a one-way thing on her part. But that was stupid of me. I’m falling for her, and he is too. Lauren Blakely writes sexy contemporary romance novels with heat, heart and humor, and her books have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and iBooks bestseller lists. Like the heroine in PLAYING WITH HER HEART, she thinks life should be filled with love, passion, and dreams come true. Lauren lives in California with her husband, children, and dogs. Her novels include Caught Up In Us, Pretending He's Mine, Playing With Her Heart, and Trophy Husband.

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Review: The Edge Of Darkness by Melissa Andrea **Giveaway**

Monday, September 23, 2013


The Edge of Darkness Cover (new)
The Edge of Darkness
By Melissa Andrea
Rating: A Whole Bottle of Wine


After a tragic accident, Araya Noelle is left with a constant reminder that nothing is forever.
She is forced to give up her chance to be the youngest dancer accepted into Julliard & taking over their high society school by a graceful storm of determination is no longer an option. Instead of dwelling over her loss, she accepts the new future she’s been dealt. In a world as black as hers, there's no room for bitterness, no time for regret. Sheltered from the outside world, Araya has become suffocated by a life she has no control over. Until Ryland Dare comes crashing into her life. You don’t know true darkness until you've felt light… Like a firecracker, showering her with colorful sparks of freedom, Ryland quickly sweeps Araya away from her grey existence. For the first time since the accident, living in darkness is no longer something Araya wants to do willingly. Unleashed by the shadows of her reminder, being with Ryland, Araya touches light. Together they will learn what it’s like to feel alive for the first time. At the edge of darkness, a ray of light, will dare them both to HOPE.  DARE them to LOVE DARE them to LIVE  

Ash's Review:

I have been in a bit of a reading slump.  A book rut. Basically, nothing has sounded appealing to me.  I couldn't decide on what type of book I was in the mood to read next.  Did I want sexy? Funny? Uplifting? Heartwarming? I just didn't know.  Then I realized I had the read The Edge of Darkness for the blog, and STAT! So, I did. In less than a day. I stayed up past my bedtime reading.  And then, I read while at work.......ALL DAY!  It was THAT GOOD!!!!!!!

The Edge of Darkness is easily one of my top reads this year.  It is The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay (my favorite book) G-O-O-D!  And it's very similar to TSOT.  Not in a copy cat way, but writing style, and depth of characters.  To start, I REALLY liked the way this was written.  Melissa was very descriptive, but never to the point where I thought to myself, "ok enough already, I GET it."  Her writing flowed really well and her character development was super good.  After each chapter, it was like another layer of our characters had been peeled back.  She also had a lot of shock value without being graphic or brutal.  I'm pretty sure at one point my jaw dropped and I said "oooohhhhhhh!!!!!".  Then I immediately text Aly and Fall and said "this book is SO good!!!"

Araya is a young lady who is struggling to go on with her life after an unthinkable tragedy happens.  While she attempts to maintain a positive attitude and be thankful that she is alive, she has lost so much, and is dealing still with constant sorrow, that it's hard to be positive at times.  Along comes Ryland.  A handsome young man from a very wealthy background, something about Araya attracts him instantly.  He just can't figure out what it is.  When Araya shows up and his home one day with her aunt to be tutored by Rylands sister, Careless (by the way I was so confused at her name for the first 1/3 of this book), he realizes right then that there's no chance he isn't going to get to know her better.  This begins the beautiful story of Araya and Ryland, and all of the drama that ensues is nothing short of heartbreaking.

Y'ALL!  Seriously, at one point I was in my car crying!!!! What a BEAUTIFUL story.  This book was touching and gripping.  It was sexy (although not graphically so).  It was soul touching.  I loved every second of it.  I was half way in and telling people that they HAD to read it.  I love how brave Araya is.  How strong willed and determined she is.  In spite of all the horrors thrown at her, she is still an amazing and beautiful person, inside and out.  And Ryland... seriously, this guy is awesome.  Where can I find one like him for myself?  Patient and kind, honest and up front.  Considering his home life, a guy like him is one in a million.  

My only grumble is that this is a series and I have to wait til OCTOBER to find out what happens next.  I mean really, I think Melissa Andrea (where ever she may be) could have heard my wail of "NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!" When I turned the page and it said "epilogue".  

I can not wait to read the next book, The Grace Of Darkness, and pick up where we left off.  Since I'm not drinking White Zin these days, I'm giving Melissa Andrea and her fantastic novel a whole bottle of sparkling grape juice!!!!! 
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Meet Melissa:

mel bio pic
I find it hard to sum up my life in a paragraph, but I’ll try. I am the author of Flutter, The Discover Series! Reading has always been a passion for me, and writing as instinctive as breathing. Every inhale is an idea; every exhale a creation.  The only thing I do better than writing you ask? Making beautiful girls. My daughter’s will always be my greatest accomplishment. I was born in Denver, Colorado–but I will always think of sunny Arizona as my home. I don’t have a big family, but I’m close with my sister, brother & my mom. My mom is my hero, my inspiration, and I couldn’t have asked for a more amazing person to be raised by. 4 things you should know about me: I’m very girly, but I can get down and dirty with the best of them. I adore the color pink and things that sparkle (including vampires), I am a firm believer that chocolate cures ALL and I like even numbers (hence 4 things about me, not 5) Okay, maybe I cheated a little with my list, shhhh.

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