Kissing Charlie Elsa Winckler
(Unexpected Love, #1)
Published by: Inkspell Publishing
Publication date: December 7th 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
One Kiss Will Change Their Lives Forever
Bowen therapist Charlie Wilson is not interested in men or relationships. Her only concern is making sure her sister Lindsay is safe.
But then billionaire Logan Johnson walks into her rooms and stirs powerful feelings inside of her. Logan’s perfectly knotted tie is a clear indication free-spirit Charlie should steer clear of him at all costs.
They are complete opposites, so why does he keep coming back to see her?
“How did you hurt your back?” Her voice was cool, and she wasn’t meeting his eyes.
“While hiking,” he said curtly. He was in pain; it didn’t matter what the hell happened. “Tell me about this Wowen, Bowen, whatever the hell you call this cr—therapy.”
She gave him a cool look. “It’s called Bowen Therapy.”
“Bowen Therapy,” he said, his gaze on her mouth.
“The guiding principles of the technique were established by Tom Bowen during the 1950s. It focuses on the whole person, not just the condition. In other words, it treats the cause, not only the symptoms. It helps the body to heal and restores the balance by shifting the body from your innate ‘fight or flight’ system to a more natural state of calm.”
He watched her as she studied his body. She was holding something in her hand. Damn, she had yet to touch him, but he was struggling not to react to her nearness. The fact that he was lying on his back wasn’t helping, either.
“Natural state of calm? With you doing strange things to my body?” he grumbled, only realizing the ambiguity of his words when they hung in the air around them.
Her lips twitched.
“Oh, you think this is funny?” he snarled.
“I think you’re in pain. I think you like being in control and at the moment, you’re not. That’s why you feel the need to lash out. But it’s fine. I often have children throwing tantrums.”
“I’m not throwing a tantrum, damn it…” He tried to sit up straight, but a pain shot up his back, and groaning, he had to slowly lie down again.
“The movements in Bowen Therapy,” she continued as if he hadn’t interrupted her, “are very distinctive and are used on precise points on the body. It involves moving the soft tissue in a particular way. I will use a rolling-type movement, using my fingers, hands, or sometimes my elbow. It will create a focus for the brain by stimulating the nerve pathways and tissue. I work on only a small area, depending how far your skin can move. What you may find strange—”
“This whole damn day is strange. I don’t know what the hell my mother was thinking,” he muttered.
I write love stories because I love reading them. I like the heroines to be feisty, independent and headstrong. And the heroes must be strong but possess a generous amount of sensitivity and should of course, be gorgeous!
Type X M.A. Phipps
(Project W.A.R., #2)
Publication date: March 26th 2021
Genres: Dystopian, Young Adult
Feared by many. Frightened of few. Torn between humanity and the monster she’s become.
When Wynter surrendered to the DSD two years ago, she thought she was protecting her friends. Lured by the promise of a cure, she hoped she might finally be rid of her devastating disease or, at least, be on the path to controlling it. But Dr. Richter was never interested in curing her.
With a collar around her neck keeping her unstable powers in check, Wynter is transformed into an unstoppable weapon. Compelled to do the State’s bidding, she kills without feeling, remembering nothing of the people she gave herself up to protect. Her only thought is to obey.
When a mission goes wrong, triggering suppressed memories, Wynter finds herself determined to piece together her past. But as she uncovers the truth, she realizes it’s no longer clear who the real enemy is, and with the threat of war looming, she must again make a choice. Can she escape her role in the impending destruction?
Or is she doomed to remain a monster forever?
TYPE X is the second book in the Project W. A. R. trilogy, which readers have compared to The Giver, Divergent, and The Hunger Games!
“This series is a must-read for dystopian and YA readers.” ★★★★★
“Twists at every chapter will have you thinking and rethinking about the way things will play out and even then you will never see it coming!” ★★★★★
“Amazing story that leaves you begging for the next one.” ★★★★★
A heavy wind slams into the side of the helicopter, jerking the metal carcass with rough, repetitive jolts, which threaten to send the gargantuan carrier aircraft spiraling to the ground. The two dozen Enforcers around me don’t seem to take much notice of the turbulence, their expressions drawn, eyes fixed straight ahead, like robots that have been programmed to concentrate only on the specified task laid out before us.
Propping my head back against the vibrating wall, I focus on the roaring drone of the rotors, listening intently to the constant whir. Steadied by the deafening hum, I drag in a deep breath and let my eyes drift closed, my heart rate evening out as I distance my thoughts from what awaits when we land. More than anything, I wish my consciousness could remain in this state of calm in-between forever. Here, reality is but a dim afterthought.
Unfortunately, such blissful escape isn’t an option.
I push out an exasperated breath through my nose and peek open my eyes, scowling at the tingle creeping over my face. Even without looking, I can tell someone’s watching me. The burning touch of wandering eyes is a far too familiar sensation by this point—that unavoidable curiosity that seems to go hand in hand with what I am now that my existence is public knowledge.
Hell, after this long, I’ve grown to expect it.
Looking up, I narrow my eyes into slits, glaring at the Enforcer strapped in the seat directly across from me. He doesn’t glance away, which intrigues me considering how skittish others tend to become in my presence. Especially the newer recruits who have only heard stories of my unfathomable power.
Based on this particular soldier’s appearance, I’d be willing to venture a guess and wager he’s barely older than me. Perhaps we’re even the same age, although twenty is unusually young for an Enforcer. Then again, the State is at war. The rules for registration have likely been eased to help expand our ranks for the battles ahead.
If only these soldiers knew how little their presence in this war even matters.
Typically, registration age begins at twenty-five, so the person in question has to work within their designated career for a minimum of six years before they can make the conscious choice to become an Enforcer—a decision not to be made lightly given everything the individual would be sacrificing. For one, service to the State is for life, which means no reneging and going back to your previous career, not to mention that Enforcers all reside in the barracks in Zone 5, which means surrendering any previously assigned living quarters. Secondly, Enforcers aren’t allowed to enter partnerships or have families of their own and all existing familial ties must be severed. This rule is in place to prevent deviant forces from ransoming loved ones to gain access to intel or admission to prohibited locations that an Enforcer would be able to access. Not that such an eventuality is even really a threat to the State. Enforcers are nicknamed Loyalists for a reason, and they live and breathe devotion to the governing body. The good of the State must always come first.
To them, nothing and no one else matters.
The young soldier’s dark eyes scan over my throat before meeting my gaze again, his pupils blown wide with the same fear written all over his face. The metal ring around my neck chafes against the skin of my collarbone when I shift in my seat. As the Enforcer quickly looks down at the floor, I grasp what it is he’s truly afraid of.
The irony of the situation would be amusing if it wasn’t so damn maddening. The battle we’re about to fly into poses far more danger to the Enforcers aboard this aircraft than I do, and yet, I’m the one he’s second-guessing. Or maybe, he’s simply doubting the effectiveness of my collar.
I breathe in, holding back a mocking laugh.
Don’t worry, I’m tempted to say to him. You aren’t the one who needs to fear me.
M. A. PHIPPS is an American author who resides near the ocean in picturesque Cornwall with her husband, daughter, and their Jack Russell, Milo. A lover of the written word, it has always been her dream to become a published author, and it is her hope to expand into multiple genres of fiction.
Dating Dracula Kinsley Adams
(Dating Monsters, #1)
Publication date: March 15th 2021
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Paranormal, Romance
The Legend. The Immortal. My… Boyfriend?
You know, I really only had two goals in life:
1) Unearth the truth about vampires and,
2) Become hella famous.
Nowhere on that list did I have “die” or “get turned into a bloodsucker.” But guess what? Life doesn’t always go according to plan. Now, thanks to an unfortunate back-alley encounter, I’m the newest member of the undead country club (fangs, coffin, and all). And my savior? Sire? Whatever…
Freaking. Dracula. Himself.
Even stranger, he claims I’m his mate. Like… eternal love. But come on! I don’t have time for that. Not only do I need to track down my attempted murderer, but I also need to learn how to be a vampire. Falling in love is the last thing on my mind right now.
Too bad Dracula has other plans for me.
Fans of Dracula will love this new modern and chic take on the immortal legend himself. Scroll up and one-click now!
“I’m sorry,” she whispered with her back still to me. “I just…. You died, Anna. You’re dead.”
“Undead,” my savior clarified for like the third time.
“It’s still dead!” Lucy snapped.
Even I glared at him. Now wasn’t the time for his little comments.
“I—I don’t know how to handle all this. Do I grieve for you? Or celebrate the fact that you’re still walking around? You’re a vampire, Anna. For frick’s sake, do you know what that means? You drink blood, you sleep in a coffin… you aren’t you anymore. How am I supposed to handle this?”
My dead heart shattered. “You’re supposed to accept me as I am,” I said, struggling to keep my voice steady. “We’re sisters. Always. Forever.”
“Except always and forever means two very different things to us now,” she said.
I forced myself to swallow. From the sounds of it, Lucy was breaking up with me. Which almost made me laugh. She was my longest relationship ever. And she wanted to walk away from it? All because of an accident I had no control over?
I ran a hand down my face and turned toward my savior. Someone whose name I really needed to learn. I couldn’t keep referring to him as my savior or I was going to develop some major hero worship issues.
“Anna, I’m sorry,” Lucy repeated. “But I think I need some time to process all this.”
I nodded, all the while keeping my gaze trained on my savior. He was the only thing keeping me calm right now. The thought that I might lose my best friend over all this was too much. I couldn’t show her how much this hurt, because if I did, I might never recover. Lucy had stormed into a vamp club at my side, but apparently, she drew the line at death.
And honestly? I didn’t blame her. This time, tears really did spring to my eyes, but I blinked them back before they spilled. If I started crying, I had a feeling I’d never stop.
“I’m going to head back to the hotel,” she said. “I’ve been staying there the past few nights.” Wait, what? Past few nights? But before I could question that little tidbit, she continued speaking. “Do you want me to call your parents for you? Explain what happened?”
“No,” I rasped. That wasn’t her responsibility. If anyone was going to tell them about my transformation, it would be me.
“I’ll text you,” she mumbled, but her voice was already fading. She was leaving.
Text me. Ugh. Why not just tell me you hope we can still be friends?
I hated this. What happened to best friends forever? I’d like to think that if this had happened to her, I’d still be standing by her side. Lucy was my world. Nothing could have convinced me to leave her.
“I’m sorry” was her final comment before I heard the door shut.
I took a few minutes to absorb everything. Thankfully, my savior let me brood in silence. I appreciated that. I wasn’t in the mood to hear platitudes right now.
Once I was sure I had schooled my expression, I turned toward him and nodded. It was embarrassing to have someone witness a break-up, but there wasn’t anything I could do about that now.
I needed a distraction. I didn’t want to think about Lucy right now. I’d reserve that for later, when I was alone and could process everything myself. Instead, I stared up at him, once again stricken speechless when our gazes met. Why did I find him so enthralling? So fascinating? It felt like I could stare at him for hours.
Clearing my throat, I rubbed the bridge of my nose and asked, “Well, do you have a name?”
His brows shot upward, and an amused smile claimed his lips, exposing the tips of his fangs. Intrigued, I reached for my own, poking them with my fingertip. They must have been what scraped my tongue earlier. Seemed they were a permanent fixture too. I’d have to remember that when talking and laughing. Vampires might be public knowledge now, but as seen by Lucy, humans weren’t one hundred percent ready to accept them yet.
“Forgive me,” he said, his voice deliciously rumbly. “I’m so accustomed to being recognized wherever I go that I often forget to introduce myself.”
So, he was like vampire royalty or something?
Fangs still peeking out from behind his lips, he gave an old-fashioned bow, one he executed flawlessly, then peered at me through long, dark lashes. I shit you not, the boy almost breathed life back into me. He was just that gorgeous.
“My name is Vlad.” He took my hand and lifted it to his lips before brushing a gentle kiss across my knuckles. “But most know me as Dracula.”
I wish I could say I absorbed that information with grace and poise. But that would have been a lie. Instead, I burst out laughing, and said, “No shit!”
Kinsley Adams is a thirty-something-year-old author who stopped counting when she turned twenty-five. When she isn’t writing uproariously hilarious romantic comedies, she’s raising her womb-gremlin with the hopes that he might one day become the world’s first Supreme Leader.
Beast Cambria Hebert
(House of Misfits, #4)
Publication date: November 12th 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Fairy Tales, Retelling, Romance
A tale as old as time…
A charismatic man cannot see beyond his own
brilliant reflection, never learning that true beauty lies within.
His selfish behavior draws the ire of a witch with enchantment on her wicked tongue.
A fiery curse is unleashed, engulfing the self-centered man’s entire existence.
When at last the flames are extinguished,
he gazes upon his reflection to discover he is no longer breathtakingly handsome
but condemned with scorched flesh and twisted scars.
He is no longer a man at all… but a beast.
While the ferocious beast rages, alienating everyone far and wide,
a woman whose beauty is far more than skin-deep
dwells in a world much simpler than his.
The beauty’s quiet life is disrupted when she is ambushed, threatened,
and boldly steps in the path of her father’s debt.
However, it’s not the thugs on her tail or the roaring beast
testing her patience that threatens to be this sassy beauty’s downfall.
It’s the way her heart flutters whenever he is near.
But some curses just can’t be broken, and really…
How can she truly ever love a beast?
“Damn. Is that all I had to do to get you to shut up all this time? Just tell you, you stink?”
I low growl vibrated my throat. It hurt, but I didn’t stop.
Her eyes rolled. Their color was beautiful, reminding me of roasted chestnuts from street vendors around the holidays.
I wondered if I’d even be able to walk the street this year. My face would probably scare everyone.
“I’m asking because now that your bandages and stitches are removed, it would be a good time to shower off before I re-cover it all.”
“I haven’t had a shower since before. Only a couple sponge baths.” Then a piece of the old me slipped out, a piece I’d thought had been gone for good. Leaning in with a slight smirk and naughty whisper, I asked, “You offering to give me a sponge bath?”
Without missing a beat, she also leaned in. “I guess I am.”
The messy room fell away, and for a moment, I forgot I was a hideous, exposed beast overwhelmed with discomfort and cast aside by the people I’d trusted. All that remained was a pair of hickory eyes regarding me with sassy mirth. Her crimson-stained lips pursed, and my eyes lingered upon them, suddenly so incredibly hungry. Unlike mine, her skin was flawless, smooth, and richly pigmented.
The long column of her neck was graceful and always exposed because the curls on her head were short and wild. My fingers itched to wrap around it, gripping with just enough force to possess her while my mouth devoured hers.
“What’s the matter, Ander? Not used to someone calling your bluff?” Her voice was amused but hushed, and something deep inside me howled in delight that she might not be as composed as she portrayed.
I leaned closer, noting the way her nostrils flared. We were so close now we shared the same breath. Hers smelled faintly of mint and was more rapid than before. “Who said I was bluffing?” I whispered.
Her cheeks turned slightly reflective, taking on a glossy sheen, and she pulled back, eyes flaring just a bit. She was flustered.
Cambria Hebert is an award winning, bestselling novelist of more than twenty books. She went to college for a bachelor’s degree, couldn’t pick a major, and ended up with a degree in cosmetology. So rest assured her characters will always have good hair.
Besides writing, Cambria loves a caramel latte, staying up late, sleeping in, and watching movies. She considers math human torture and has an irrational fear of chickens (yes, chickens). You can often find her running on the treadmill (she’d rather be eating a donut), painting her toenails (because she bites her fingernails), or walking her chorkie (the real boss of the house).
Cambria has written within the young adult and new adult genres, penning many paranormal and contemporary titles. Her favorite genre to read and write is romantic suspense. A few of her most recognized titles are: The Hashtag Series, Text, Torch, and Tattoo.
Cambria Hebert owns and operates Cambria Hebert Books, LLC.
Disavow Bella Di Corte
Publication date: November 5th 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
He was my only oath.
Aniello Assanti was a monster dressed in a gentlemen’s suit.
He was everything I should’ve feared and run away from. A walking nightmare. He belonged to an organization that valued money over life; power over free will; codes over love.
And if that wasn’t enough of a deterrent, he was strictly forbidden.
I, Rosalia Lombardozzi, solemnly vow…no fraternizing with the men who belong.
I worked for the same organization, and even with that oath forever marking my tongue, I was drawn to him like a moth to a flame. Something existed between us that not even the fire of disloyalty could turn to ash.
Some called it obsession. I called it love.
The world we lived in called it an act of betrayal. To disavow meant certain death.
When the heart takes an oath, though, it is more sacred than any vow spoken—it’s the one thing worth living and worth dying for.
The story of Assanti and Rosalia is quite a ride.. full of passion, danger, death and destruction.
The first chapter started in a way that made me feel a bit like I’d been dropped into the middle of something. It took me a few pages to settle in but once I did I couldn’t stop reading. The attraction between Rosalia and Assanti is immediately apparent, and forbidden. Both characters were willing to risk everything for love. Assanti not only would kill for Rosalia but would die for her too.
The secondary characters added extra layers to the story and brought it to life. The friends and family, their enemies… each was multifaceted and complex in their own way. And seldom was anyone as they first appeared.
Disavow will keep you on your toes, always guessing, but will give you a deeply satisfying ending that will make you wish there was more… you’ll never want to leave Bella Di Corte’s world once you take that first step.
*Disclaimer: I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. The review above is only my opinion.
Bella Di Corte has been writing romance for seven years, even longer if you count the stories in her head that were never written down, but she didn’t realize how much she enjoyed writing alphas until recently. Tough guys who walk the line between irredeemable and savable, and the strong women who force them to feel, inspire her to keep putting words to the page.
Apart from writing, Bella loves to spend time with her husband, daughter, and family. She also loves to read, listen to music, cook meals that were passed down to her, and take photographs. She mostly takes pictures of her family (when they let her) and her three dogs.
Bella grew up in New Orleans, a place she considers a creative playground.
She loves to connect with readers, so don’t hesitate to email her at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to reach out.
Reborn Anne K. Whelan & Liz Cain
(The Royal Pack Trilogy, #1)
Publication date: August 13th 2021
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance
Imagine waking up on the edge of the woods with no memory of who you are or how you got there.
When Aine finds herself in this situation, she must rely on the kindness of others to get back on her feet.
With the help of a handsome Irish stranger she starts a new life, but her memories soon claw their way out and she can’t outrun her duty.
A story of intrigue, discovery and the corruption of ambition. Aine must figure out her past, before the life she can’t remember is destroyed.
As she walked back to her seat, the large glass doors at the front opened, and a tall, muscular man walked in. Aine froze as a quiet growl escaped her throat and her muscles tensed. He moved with a lethal, controlled grace. She dropped into a crouch as she watched his muscular frame push the door closed.
He had rough facial hair along a prominent jaw, his ice-blue eyes were cold with inexplicable anger as he looked at her. His hair was dark chocolate brown, slightly grey around his ears.
Dizziness overtook Aine as he walked forward—not the best moment to be left vulnerable. Her instincts screamed at her to escape. The little energy the food had given her drained away as she faced him, ready to fight.
The man frowned, as he looked her in the eyes, and when her gaze met his, a jolt of recognition shot through her. Confused, she growled a warning. The kitchen door slammed behind her, and Aine quickly turned to keep both entrance and exit in view.
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In the Echo of this Ghost Town C.L. Walters
Publication date: October 12th 2021
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
When everything in your life unravels and the future you imagined disintegrates into dust—how do you decide which way is forward?
Griffin Nichols has lost everyone close to him. Unhealthy choices rooted in unmet expectations have him feeling like he’s failing at being a man. Everything he thought he knew about being a good son, brother, and friend has him feeling as substantive as an echo.
Then Maxwell Wallace walks into his life and teaches him that sometimes in the weakness of the echo is where he can claim his strength.
I look up at the sound of a voice, grateful to be jerked from the train of my thoughts.
The girl. She’s standing on the other side of the table in her dark t-shirt and cutoff shorts, her back to the gas pumps and road. The light from the store illuminates her, and I think she’s cute, but obviously not all there if she’s talking to a stranger.
She sits down with a Slurpee, and I look at it longingly but also wish I had some vodka to spike it with. I conjure Danny’s words from the night before. I’d told him I’m always drunk. What had he said back? “Yeah. Maybe that’s the fucking problem. It’s time to grow up, Griff.” What if I do have a problem? Then I’m annoyed by the stupid thought—of course, I don’t. What the fuck? Can’t this weird girl tell I’m busy sulking?
My face must screw up because she says, “I’m not carrying any diseases.”
I take a sip of my water, not sure what to do about this stranger who’s sat with me at a table outside of Custer’s. I glance to check if someone is playing a joke on me, but all my friends have abandoned me. So yeah, there’s that. I look at her. She’s got a round face, but it’s smooth and pleasant looking. Brownish hair, I think, because it’s pulled back in a bun or something off her face. Black eyeliner. Black T-shirt with the words Def Leppard inside a Union Jack.
She pinches the straw and moves it around the slushy. It squeaks. “Decide I’m not a serial killer?” She smirks, and my eyes are drawn to her blunt black nails at the end of her long fingers holding the red straw.
“Jury’s out.” I look away and take a sip of my water, annoyed but kind of curious.
I shrug. “What if I’m the serial killer?” I can’t look at her, though I’m not sure why. It isn’t like I’m nervous, even if she’s a little unnerving. Why have I said that? The idea of being compared to a killer takes me backward. Griff Nichols, son of a murderer, when I’d been alone, but I’d shed that persona with my crew. I shove the reminder aside.
“It’s a distinct possibility.”
My eyes connect with hers, the curiosity revving up a notch. “Why’s that?”
“Guy sitting outside of a convenience store on a Monday night looking all moody. Definitely sending shady vibes. You spike that unassuming water bottle? Use the innocence of water to lure in your victims but in reality, you’re just setting the trap?” She smiles, and I see that she’s joking around even though I don’t know her; it’s the squint of her eyes.
“I get that a lot.” She pauses and leans forward to take a sip of her drink and looks over at me. Her eyes sparkle with mirth, but it’s hard to tell what color they are even in the light. Lightish. “So, what do you do in this town for fun?”
“Get drunk. You new?”
“Yes. Why aren’t you doing that?”
“So, a drunk six days a week? You have standards, I see. So that must be real water.” She pauses and raises a single eyebrow—which bugs me for some reason. “You don’t look much like the type with standards.”
I’m not, but I don’t say it. “Neither do you.”
“Touché, serial killer. So, you don’t drink on Monday for other reasons, then?”
“I didn’t say I don’t drink on Monday. I just said it was Monday. You made the assumption.”
She laughs, but it’s mostly air. “Fair enough.”
This conversation could die. I could stand and walk away. I don’t. I blame it on my lack of being alone, which I’m going to have to reestablish. “So, you’re new here?”
“Yep. Just moved. Only here for the summer.”
“Why what?” She takes another sip of her slushy.
I watch her swallow it. Then I look back at my water bottle to resume plucking the plastic label. “Only for the summer?”
“The band I play with is going on tour.”
She laughs. “No.”
“So you’ve said.” She stands. “Well. Thanks for sharing the table.”
“There were two other ones you could have chosen.”
She glances at the other two and then leans forward. “But then I wouldn’t have gotten to talk to a serial killer.” She smiles, offers me a nod, and with her hand wrapped around her cup, she walks away. She’s wearing jean cutoffs, tight, and the strings of the cut denim hang against her long and shapely legs.
I scoff, looking away because I don’t want to notice her. A serial killer. Stupid.
As I watch her—the nameless, weird girl—walk away, I realize I forgot what I was sulking about.
My Review – 4 1/2 stars
In the Echo of this Ghost Town is a hard, yet rewarding, read. It will make you angry, make you cry, and still give you hope for a better tomorrow.
The opening of the book was a bit of a struggle for me to read. I wasn’t invested in the characters and didn’t much care about the fight between the friends. But I kept reading, and I’m so glad I did.
Griffin is all kinds of messed up. He’s taken all of his pain and shoved it down deep, letting it fester so that he lashes out not only at those around him, but even attacks himself. Drowning his pain in alcohol and parties, he didn’t realize how far he’d fallen, until he had nowhere to go but up.
Enter “Weird Girl.”
The moment Griffin met Max, I knew something was about to happen. She sparked his interest, intrigued him unlike anyone ever had, and didn’t let him get away with being a complete jerk. With Max, Griffin realized he needed to become a better person. Not only to ever have a chance at a true friendship, but also for himself.
In the Echo of this Ghost Town isn’t about the end destination so much as the journey… Isn’t that what life really is? A journey? I enjoyed seeing Griffin grow as a person, loved how patient Max was with him while remaining tough and telling him what he needed to hear and not always what he wanted to hear. The dynamic between the two was amazing. The book touches on some hard topics, but life isn’t easy so why should a fictional character’s not be just as messy and screwed up?
Definitely worth the read!
*Disclaimer: I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. The review above is only my opinion.
As a kid, my world revolved around two things: stories and make believe. I have built a real life around those two things as well: I am a teacher of stories and a writer of make believe.
While I went to high school in a small town in Oregon and college in a smaller town in Oregon – both gifted me with treasures to fill my creative reservoir and most importantly, my husband. We got married, I followed him from Oregon to Hawaii (it was that or forgo the marriage).
They Stay Claire Fraise
(They Stay Series, #1)
Publication date: October 12th 2021
Genres: Supernatural, Thriller, Young Adult
For fans of Stranger Things comes a suspenseful YA mystery about a missing kid, a girl who can see ghosts, and a horrifying crime only four outcasts have the power to stop.
What if the only person who could help you find your missing brother was dead?
Nothing is as important to sixteen-year-old Shiloh Oleson as her little brother Max. So when the six-year-old goes missing without a trace, a heartbroken Shiloh refuses to believe nothing can be done and sets out to find him.
When one of Shiloh’s classmates says she knows where Max is, Shiloh hesitates to believe her. Francesca is creepy. She says she can see ghosts, but everyone knows ghosts aren’t real … right?
But Francesca says that Max is going to be murdered.
And a ghost told her where he is.
As the line between the dead and living begins to blur, Shiloh starts to think Francesca might not be as crazy as she believed. One thing is becoming clear. Someone has gruesome plans for Max, and Shiloh must confront her worst nightmares to find him before it’s too late.
THEY STAY is the first book in the They Stay Series. Read on if you like ghost stories, plot twists, enemies-to-friends, creepy circuses, budding romance, and unlikely heroes.
Content Warnings: This book contains death, kidnapping, domestic abuse, references to suicide, bullying, and mild adult language.
They Stay is both tragic and full of hope. The horror Shiloh and Max faced with an abusive alcoholic for a father is sadly a reality for too many people. Someone you should be able to trust becomes the monster you fear most. All Shiloh had was her brother, until he vanished.
Shiloh makes friends in unlikely places as she tries to find her brother. With a bit of Ghost Whisperer flare, the story is full of spirits and people making difficult choices. It does end with a bit of a cliffhanger, but the main story arc is tied up neatly.
If you’re looking for a paranormal mystery with a bit of romance, a lot of drama, and some tough topics, They Stay is worth the read! Once I started, I couldn’t put it down.
Claire Fraise earned her B.A. in English from Tufts University. She is also the author of YA dystopian novel Imperfect (winner of the San Francisco and Beverly Hills Book Festivals), which she published when she was 16. When Claire’s not writing, she likes crocheting amigurumi animals, reading, and hanging out with her dogs. Even though it goes against every introverted bone in her body, she is on social media. Connect with her on Instagram at @clairefraiseauthor, on YouTube at Write with Claire Fraise, or visit her website at clairefraise.com.
Hot as a California summer and off limits.
A rich, snobby princess, but I couldn’t help crave her innocence as much as the next man.
No matter how much her feigned hatred stirred up obsessive want inside me, I found myself protecting her from the real predator.
Betrayed by Addilyn and my father, I ended up in jail for assault.
But I’m a free man now, and I have what I need to get my revenge.
I’ll destroy the man who uprooted my life.
Make Addilyn pay for her part in ruining me.
My obsession has not waned in five years, so to hell with wanting.
This time, I’m taking.
WARNING: Taking, the second book of the Forbidden Obsession Duet, contains triggers and mature themes. Recommended for 18+
Addilyn and the asshole eventually exited, moving across the parking lot together. My stare burned on the back of her head. She stumbled and nearly fell—until the blond fucker touched her.
Fucking touched what didn’t belong to him.
Jaw clenched and hands fisting, I roused my self-control to hold still, allowing him to help her right herself, all the while cursing his existence, his smile.
They moved forward once more, and I shifted with the deep darkness of the night, determined to get closer. To stop the fucker from putting his hands on her if he tried.
He bumped her arm a second time, blatantly flirting, and I growled, fingertips itching to rip his face to fucking shreds.
The thought he might kiss her goodnight—or even worse, follow her home to her place, raised my goddamn hackles, and I shivered with the need to unleash some violence. The hunting knife strapped to my waist suddenly felt heavier, the blade seeming to whisper as I slid it out into my palm. One slash would spill blood and keep whoever the fucker was from touching her ever again.
From behind a truck, I gritted my teeth and watched them approach her car.
Waited, every cell in my body vibrating.
She went to open her car door, and he reached out for her arm, halting her.
I took a step forward, the handle of the knife in my hand in a blink.
A few mumbled words—and he turned back the way they’d come, sending me sliding into the shadow of the truck.
Addilyn peered after him for a few seconds before climbing inside her car.
I stayed put and pressed against the truck, contemplating the blade in my hand and the clueless fuck seconds from passing me by.
Twinkie had taught me how to wield a knife and where to best stab to end a life.
And I considered it. Fuck, did I think on it.
Saw it in my mind… A quick grab, a single slash across the fucker’s throat. The spray of blood reddening the snow and slush at my feet. Soothing my rage’s need to unleash.
But he could easily shout before steel met flesh.
And the other people exiting the pizzeria behind me would see.
Five years in prison had been more than enough, and I couldn’t afford to land there again without finishing what I had planned.
Pulling back tight against the truck, I held still. Didn’t breathe.
And the clueless fuck waltzed right on past, not realizing fate had given him a generous second chance at life.
Lynn Burke is a full time mother, voracious gardener, and scribbler of spicy romance stories. A country bumpkin turned Bay Stater, she enjoys her chowdah and Dunkin Donuts when not trying to escape the reality of city life.
The Soul of Love E.X. Alexander
(The Soul of Love, #1)
Publication date: August 31st 2021
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance
For generations, the Greek gods have been at war with each other; fighting to sit on the throne of Mt. Olympus.
Eros, the god of love and the most powerful of the ancients, has been waging his own secret war. For eons, he has been looking for his lost soul mate, Psyche; her return marks the beginning of the end of the reign of the Olympians, and the restoration to power by the primordial gods. But she has been reborn as a mortal, with no memory of him.
Psyche holds the key to the throne of Mt. Olympus. With her and Eros’ enemies coming out of the shadows to stop them, it is a race against time. If she cannot reunite her soul with Eros, her powers, memories, and the lives of the gods and mortals alike will be forever lost.
Content Warning: This book contains some scenes with mild violence, sexual situations, and references to suicide.
She lay still in his arms, allowing the heat from his body to lull her back into a semi-relaxed state. When he made no move to resume the intimacy of their wedding night, she turned slightly toward him.
Burying his head in her hair, he breathed in her scent as if committing it to memory. “I will leave you alone if that is your wish. We can wait until you are ready to consummate our marriage.” Feeling a heavy sorrow at the thought of leaving her, he nonetheless did not want to cause her any more turmoil. He would wait, even as it threatened to dim the joy he felt at finally having her back in his life.
He pressed a kiss against her temple and released her. As he turned away and made his way out of the bed, Psyche was gripped with fear at the thought of him leaving her. It was so strong it overwhelmed her with a desire to keep him by her side in spite of her reservations.
Not understanding her reaction to his departure, she cried out, “Wait!” Reaching out to stop him, she was shocked to discover what her hand was gripping. “You have wings,” she said in startled amazement.
Eros stopped and shuddered at the touch of her hand on his wing. It was the first touch she initiated between them of her own volition, and it devastated him. Holding still, for he did not trust himself, he waited to see what she would do.
Psyche was too stunned to do anything but hold on to his wing for several moments. When he did nothing to repudiate her touch, she slowly slid her hand down his wing, marveling at the soft texture and heat. Repeating the caress, she inched closer and brought her other hand to press against his other wing. Feeling emboldened by his continued silence, she pressed against his back and continued to stroke his wings.
Then Psyche laid her cheek against the center of his shoulder blades, where his wings grew out of his back. She continued her slow caress. The feel of his wings seemed strangely familiar, as if she had run her hands over them hundreds of times. Frowning, she tried to remember, the memory teasing along the edges of her mind, but no matter how hard she tried, the knowledge danced away from her. Before she could chase the phantom memory, she was distracted by the hiss of pleasure that her new husband released at her touch.
Eros could barely restrain himself from turning around and pinning her to the bed as lust consumed him. The feel of her bare breasts pressed against his lower back sent shards of pleasure directly to his groin, where he tightened painfully as she continued to pet him. But it was her breath teasing the sensitive nerve endings of where his wings emerged from his back that was his undoing. When she started to nuzzle him, Eros knew he had to warn her before he lost total control. “Psyche, make your choice now. I only have so much control, and I have waited so long for you that I cannot continue to let you touch me without taking you. So choose, do I stay or do I go?”
Psyche stilled at his words. Faced with the power to control even a small part of her destiny gave her courage. Feeling that something fragile and precious would be lost if she allowed him to leave this night, she made her decision. “Stay.”
E.X. Alexander is a romance author who loves to tell a good romance story: the hotter, the better. A proud Greek American (no My Big Fat Greek Wedding jokes or she’ll be forced to pull out the Windex 😉 who loves to spend time with her family and friends. There is no better way to relax than to curl up with a steamy romance novel with purr babies under a blanket. Okay, a spa day would be a close second. If she is not reading or writing she can usually be found in her car listening to heavy metal and rock music in pursuit of her two favorite fruits: coffee and chocolate. (Yes, they are fruits.)