September 12, 2017

BLOG TOUR REVIEW: Lust (Vegas Nights #2)



Lust (Vegas Nights #2), by Emma Hart
Publish Date:
September 12, 2017
Publisher: self-published
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author and Inkslinger PR
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS


(Synopsis) Detective Adrian Potter had a lot to answer for. I didn’t care that he was tasked with shutting down the city’s most prolific hookers.

I cared that he was stopping me from providing for my daughter.

He didn’t care.

Not at all.

Until I broke down in the backseat of his car… And he let me go.

Adrian was a single parent, too. He knew how hard I had it. At least, he thought he did.

He had a job. He had people who cared. He didn’t know just how lucky he was.

My name is Perrie Fox.

I was a whore of the highest value.

Until Detective Adrian Potter.

Until the tattooed, redemption-seeking detective entered my life, looking for his fairytale.

The cop and the hooker.

Happily ever fucking never.

You’ve met one Fox sibling.

Now meet the other…

I love Emma Hart’s writing. Usually, her stories are laugh-out-loud funny, super sexy and so freaking romantic. Lust is one of the more serious books of hers that I’ve read. It’s still sexy and romantic, but in place of a lot of that trademark snark is a huge depth of emotion. Perrie has not had things easy in the least, and that comes through.

A lot of the necessary comic relief comes in the form of Perrie’s very sassy seven-year-old daughter Lola. I can’t imagine Perrie’s life - that she’s part of one of the wealthiest families in Las Vegas, but because of her horrible adoptive father, she was shunned and can’t access any of the money that is rightfully hers. Like any other mother, she does what she has to do to keep a roof over their head and food in their bellies. But, you can tell, it is slowly killing her soul.

I think her getting caught trying to turn a trick on Adrian was the best thing that ever happened to her. He ends up enlisting her help in rounding up other prostitutes in exchange for a legit paycheck and some self-respect back. And, Adrian ends up having to admit that, despite her chosen profession, Perrie is a pretty awesome woman. It also doesn’t hurt that her daughter and Adrian’s eight-year-old son become fast BFFs.

Lust backs up the established timeline a bit. We actually met Perrie briefly toward the end of Sin (Vegas Nights #1) when Dahlia meets with her about reuniting with Perrie’s estranged brother and then Dahlia offers her a job tending bar at The Scarlet Letter. Lust gives us the chance to witness the events leading up to that meeting. So, we know where Perrie’s frame of mind is when she gets to that meeting. And it came at a really great time.

We also get to move on from that moment in time and see what happens later. The reunion between Perrie and her brother Damien that happened off camera in Sin is now front and center in Lust. We also get to see where Damien and Dahlia are in their relationship.

But, obviously, the relationship that takes center stage here is the one between Perrie and Adrian. The cop and the hooker. But, neither of them can be defined by just those titles. Their individual tragedies have made them complex people who just happen to be perfect for one another.

I don’t know if we’ll get another Vegas Nights book (perhaps about Dahlia’s bar manager Abby?), but if Emma Hart writes it, I’ll read it.

By day, New York Times and USA Today bestselling New Adult author Emma Hart dons a cape and calls herself Super Mum to two beautiful little monsters. By night, she drops the cape, pours a glass of whatever she fancies—usually wine—and writes books.

Emma is working on Top Secret projects she will share with her followers and fans at every available opportunity. Naturally, all Top Secret projects involve a dashingly hot guy who likes to forget to wear a shirt, a sprinkling (or several) of hold-onto-your-panties hot scenes, and a whole lotta love.

She likes to be busy—unless busy involves doing the dishes, but that seems to be when all the ideas come to life.

SIGN UP FOR ALL NEW RELEASE INFO!

FACEBOOK / TWITTER / GOODREADS / AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

BLOG TOUR REVIEW: Blood Guard (Mission #1)


Blood Guard (Mission #1), by Megan EricksonPublish Date: September 12, 2017
Publisher: Loveswept
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: adult paranormal romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 4.5 STARS


(Synopsis) Tendra: One minute, I’m a bartender in gritty Mission City; the next, I’m whisked away by a vampire named Athan who tells me that I’m the lifeblood of his clan. It sounds unbelievable, but he’s got evidence I can’t deny. Turns out, Athan belongs to an underground society of vampires who feed only on humans with their consent. Their enemies have no such qualms, and they want me dead. The only thing standing in their way is strong, sexy Athan. And the closer we get, the more tempted I am to let Athan feed. . . .

Athan: How could I have known when I snatched this snarky, beautiful human off the streets that she would change mydestiny? As a loyal soldier, I must deliver Tendra to our future king—my brother. Empowered with the blood of ten generations of the Gregorie breed, she is fated to rule as our queen. But there’s something between us that’s so intoxicating, so carnal, I can’t help wanting Tendra for myself . . . even if it’s treason.

I have to admit - I got burned out on vampires. I read Twilight, Sookie Stackhouse, Night Huntress, Black Dagger Brotherhood and Chicagoland Vampires all in the same time period (along with countless other vampire books), and I just kind of got sick of them. It’s been a while since I read a vampire book. I’m glad it was Megan Erickson that broke my dry spell.

Blood Guard is not Megan’s first trip into the paranormal (see her Silver Tip Pack series for that), but it is her first go at the blood suckers. When I read a new vampire book by a new author or a new-to-me author, I’m always most interested in how they will use and spin the mythology we’re all familiar with.

In Megan’s vampire world (which is our own world, so it’s got a gritty, urban fantasy vibe to it), sunlight is deadly, they are long lived and they drink human blood to survive. All very normal vampire traits. But, in true Megan Erickson fashion, there’s a unique element or two added in just to make things extra interesting.

Our heroine, Tendra, is a pretty badass human. She has no knowledge of vampires in the beginning, and we learn that she has just lost her only family and is feeling pretty alone in her small town. She’s in a perfect position for vampire prince Athan to pluck her from her humdrum life and show her that vampires are real. But, she was not a random choice. She has a specific role to fulfill, and he’s here to protect her while they travel so that she can realize her destiny.

Thank goodness that Megan Erickson didn’t have Tendra automatically accept all this as fact right away. I hate when heroines are told vampires are real in books, and after a few half-hearted attempts at denial, they fall in line. Tendra’s a lot tougher than that, and Athan knows he has to offer her some pretty solid proof. Even with all that, it still takes her a short while to come to terms with all of it.

Like she did with the Silver Tip Pack series, Blood Guard doesn't follow every rule for vampires out there. Megan puts her ability to shock the crap out of us to good use. There's a few big twists in store that will surprise you and keep you glued to the pages. Well, those and the super sexiness. Because Tendra and Athan are crazy hot together. Their sexual chemistry builds for awhile because she's been promised to his brother. But, of course, Athan can't keep his hands off her. Thank goodness.

I'm completely sold on Megan Erickson's world of vampires. I can't see what is in store for Athan's brother Idris. 

Megan Erickson is a USA Today bestselling author of romance that sizzles. Her books have a touch of nerd, a dash of humor, and always have a happily ever after. A former journalist, she switched to fiction when she decided she likes writing her own endings better.

She lives in Pennsylvania with her very own nerdy husband and two kids. Although rather fun-sized, she's been told she has a full-sized personality. When Megan isn't writing, she's either lounging with her two cats named after John Hughes characters or... thinking about writing.

Connect with Megan:
Website: meganerickson.org
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authormeganerickson/
Twitter: www.twitter.com/MeganErickson_
Bookbub: http://bit.ly/2wlessh
Newsletter: http://bit.ly/2voYMHc

September 5, 2017

RELEASE DAY REVIEW: If There's No Tomorrow


If There's No Tomorrow, by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publish Date:
September 5, 2017
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: young adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS


(Synopsis) Lena Wise is always looking forward to tomorrow, especially at the start of her senior year. She's ready to pack in as much friend time as possible, to finish college applications and to maybe let her childhood best friend Sebastian know how she really feels about him. For Lena, the upcoming year is going to be epic—one of opportunities and chances.

Until one choice, one moment, destroys everything.

Now Lena isn't looking forward to tomorrow. Not when friend time may never be the same. Not when college applications feel all but impossible. Not when Sebastian might never forgive her for what happened.

For what she let happen.

With the guilt growing each day, Lena knows that her only hope is to move on. But how can she move on when her and her friends' entire existences have been redefined? How can she move on when tomorrow isn't even guaranteed?

I had to psych myself up to read this one. Not because I was afraid I wouldn't like it. After reading The Problem With Forever, I knew that Jennifer Armentrout could do an emotional YA contemporary so well. No - it was the fact that I knew it would slay me, and I had to gear myself up for the tears. I mean, that description, right?? It sounds so ominous and unfortunate. It sounds like death is involved somehow, and knowing these are kids, any death in their young lives is going to be tragic. 

I was SO right.

But, despite the fact that I had the book in my hand for a few weeks before I actually started reading it, I did love it. Lena's a book fan who has a large circle of friends including three best girl friends and one best guy friend. She's a moderately good volleyball player, a good student and has a great mom (although, her dad is another story). She worries about all the typical things 17-year-old girls worry about - what college will she go to and what will she study? How could she have let that guy kiss her last month? And why does she have to have feelings for her best guy friend Sebastian? 

Then, one choice on one night changes her world in a tragic way. 

I think, for me, one of the things about this book that made it especially emotional is that everything that happens to Lena has happened to other teens in America countless times over. Perhaps not always with the same outcome, but kids grapple with the choices Lena faced, and I'm sure they make the same one. I want my daughter to read this book when she gets to high school, and I hope she makes some sort of connection with the characters and uses it as a reference if she finds herself in a similar situation. 

Never fear all you romance lovers out there - despite the deep and heavy subject matter, there is plenty of romance in If There's No Tomorrow to sink your teeth into. Things between Sebastian and Lena develop at such a great pace. The romance never seems to be thrown in there in a haphazard way, as romances sometimes seem when they're overshadowed by the larger story arc. Lena's way of dealing with what happened remains always at the forefront, and how her relationship with Sebastian develops is shaped because of that larger story arc. It's as it should be, even if it is incredibly frustrating to read at times. 

If There's No Tomorrow is told entire from Lena's POV. In some of Jen Armentrout's previous books, she's gone back later and posted on her website portions of her books written from the guy's POV. I would LOVE to get some of that here. There's no doubt that this is entirely Lena's journey, so it's only right that it be told all by her. But, there are some parts of the story, that I would've loved to have known what was going through Sebastian's head. That would be an amazing extra. 

I'm a huge Jen Armentrout fan. She's so versatile - able to write emotional YA contemporary one month and adult romantic suspense the next. And she does them all so very well. If There's No Tomorrow will gut you and frustrate you. It will make you cry and make you smile a little from time to time too. And it's one that will stay with you for a long time.