Monday, 5 December 2016

New Release ~ Heartbeats by Sarah O'Rourke

This one caught my eye because it reminded me of one of my favourite TV programmes, Criminal Minds.

Book Description:

He’ll fight her every step of the way. She’s fighting because there is no other way to keep him alive.

Legendary FBI profiler Matteo Cassano gives the orders. He is not accustomed at all to following them. The control-freak legend of the FBI could have any woman he wants, and often had in the past. But when he meets the amazing, younger Brenna Langley, he might have finally found the woman that could change his entire life.

Brenna Lagley is professional, focused, and determined to move ahead in her career with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Having tried a few failed relationships, she had decided that romance would not be in the cards for her. That was, until Matt Cassano enters her orbit and she finds herself on a secret, covert mission to save the great man from himself. 

But what happens when these two determined personalities clash and the change is more than either one of them bargained for? And when Matt’s health becomes an issue, can the fledgling relationship survive? 

STANDALONE. HEA. Romantica erotica.

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Sunday, 4 December 2016

Review ~ A Veil of Vines by Tillie Cole

Book Description:

To most people, princes, princesses, counts and dukes are found only in the pages of the most famous of fairytales. Crowns, priceless jewels and gilded thrones belong only in childhood dreams.
But for some, these frivolous fancies are truth. 
For some, they are real life. 
On Manhattan’s Upper East Side, people have always treated me as someone special. All because of my ancestral name and legacy. All because of a connection I share to our home country’s most important family of all.
I am Caresa Acardi, the Duchessa di Parma. A blue blood of Italy. I was born to marry well. And now the marriage date is set. 
I am to marry into House Savona. The family that would have been the royals had Italy not abolished the monarchy in 1946. But to the aristocrats of my home, the abolition means nothing at all.
The Savonas still hold power where it counts most.
In our tight-knit world of money, status and masked balls, they are everything and more. 
And I am soon to become one of them.
I am soon to become Prince Zeno Savona’s wife…
… or at least I was, until I met Achille. 
And everything changed.

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Our Review:

Reviewed by Donna ~ 4.5 stars

“Wealth is no protection from loneliness. It is very easy to be surrounded by many people yet feel like you are caught alone in the rain.”

I have to admit that I was hesitant to read this one, some of my trusted book friends were not bowled over by this book and I didn’t want to taint my six for six record with a Tillie Cole read. But, we all read differently and while for some this one was cheesy, for me, this just ticked every single hopeless romantic bone in my body. Yes, it was predictable, yes, at times it was over the top, but the little princess that is forever resident inside any female was just jumping around in happiness, with her hands over her heart as Tillie Cole delivered the ultimate fairy tale romance, a real Cinderella story where for once it was the prince that needed saving.

“…the unfortunates that in an alternate universe would be the happiest of hearts, but are forever broken and lost in this.”

One thing that Tillie Cole never fails to deliver is character connection, she embeds her characters into your heart and soul and A Veil of Vines was no different. The emotional connection that I had led to many a tear as stars fail to align and Plato’s split apart theory seems to have another two unwilling victims. Set in Italy in a well-known and sought after royal vineyard Tillie Cole transports you to the undulating hills, the rows of vines and into societal pomp and ceremony. Her atmospheric and visceral prose has you feeling the grapes, smelling the Italian fresh air and falling in love with one handsome, Italian winemaker.

Arranged marriages are a dying breed in this day and age, but in this quaint part of Italy it is very much in full flow as the Duchess di Parma and Prince Zeno put into motion the betrothal that was made by their parents when they were little children. With the King’s sudden death bringing the family’s wine business down drastic action is needed to qualm the fears of shareholders and buyers alike. Zeno is known as the “Playboy Prince” and none have confidence that this reckless and spontaneous Prince could ever emulate and fill the shoes of his predecessor.

“The monarchy is officially gone, yet look at us – a dethroned prince and an American-raised duchessa arranged to be married by our fathers. You can’t get more medieval than that.”

Caresa is the Duchess di Parma, born with Italian blue blood, raised in Italy until the diversification of the royal wine company led them to America. Now back on Italian soil to marry her prince, Caresa is not happy but willing to do whatever is necessary to secure the future of the company that her father has spent all his years tirelessly working on with the King. Wine, horses and family fill Caresa’s heart but little did she know that the biggest piece would be claimed by the winemaker that makes her favourite Merlot.

“Cinderella could keep the jewels, the carriage and the prince. I wanted the vineyard, the faded jeans and the golden touch of a beautiful winemaker.”

Achille Marchesi stole my heart, he was quiet, unassuming, hardworking, lived a simple life and lived for his vines, his wine, his Merlot. When his path crosses with Caresa’s for the first time he is forever changed, the dark becomes light, his heavy heart starts to beat once again, but most of all he finally meets his soul mate. His split apart. He knows it, she knows it, but the aristocracy don’t.

“I found you, my missing part, here amongst the vines, and nothing you say will ever change that fact.”

Forbidden romance, fairy tale romance, cute, heart fit to burst romance. Little angst, a lot of swooning a few emotional tears and I was one happy camper, make that seven for seven. I loved it, I adored it. For the little girl inside me, this was a perfect read.

“Passion fused with knowledge always births greatness.”

Saturday, 3 December 2016

Release Blitz & Excerpt ~ Home Tears by Tijan

Title: Home Tears
Author: Tijan
Genre: Contemporary Romantic Suspense
Release Date: December 2, 2016

Book Description:

Dani’s survived a lot of sh*t storms.

Her mother died. Her two sisters loathed her. One aunt hated her. The other was strangely distant, but the worst storm—being dumped by her childhood best friend/high school boyfriend/first love for her younger sister.

There went the one person who was hers and with that, the main reason she stuck around. So, she left for ten years. But now she’s back, and nothing’s the same.

With help from Jonah Bannon, a reformed—kind of—bad boy she remembers from high school, Dani uncovers family secrets that have spanned generations. And along with those, she’s about to face the biggest sh*t storm of her life.

Only this time, she may not survive.

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“Why’d you push me earlier?”

“It’s not important.”

But it was. She felt it in her chest. It was so important, and she needed him to say it again. She was salivating for the chance. She wanted to reassure him, and this time she felt it in her heart. She knew she wasn’t going anywhere. She wanted him to see it in her eyes, that she meant every single word.

She whispered now, “Ask me. Ask me again.”

His eyes met hers, narrowing slightly. He was looking into her, reading her.

She was letting him. There was no wall, no hesitation this time. She wanted him to know her, not just her body. All of her. A second passed. He was still searching in her. Another second. More. He waited a full thirty before asking, his voice so soft and tender, “What would you do if you found out another person cared about you? If you mattered to one more person?”

“Nothing.” She was trying to convey her feelings through her eyes. She wanted him to know so badly. “I wouldn’t run. I wouldn’t walk. I wouldn’t hide. I’d do nothing except stand and embrace it.” 

His eyes darkened, an emotion passed in them, one that had her heart beating so fast again. “Yeah?” He let go of her hand, but touched the side of her face. He held her in the palm of his hand, and his thumb rubbed over her cheek. It was like he was smoothing away any lingering worries she might have. “What if I was that person?”

She leaned toward him, her eyes going from his lips back to his gaze. Both were pulling her in, making her yearn for more. “Then I’d say, I feel the same.” Her breath held in her throat. They were talking in code, but it was out now. She was telling him how she felt, and a second later, his lips were on hers.

This. She turned, wound her arms around his neck. This was everything.

About the Author: 

Tijan is a New York Times Bestselling author that writes suspenseful and unpredictable novels. Her characters are strong, intense, and gut-wrenchingly real with a little bit of sass on the side. Tijan began writing later in life and once she started, she was hooked. She’s written multi-bestsellers including the Carter Reed Series, the Fallen Crest Series, and the Broken and Screwed Series among others. She is currently writing Fallen Crest Six (untitled) along with so many more from north Minnesota where she lives with a man she couldn’t be without and an English Cocker she adores. 

To find what to read next of hers, go to



Review ~ What Remains of Me by Alison Gaylin

Book Description:

The USA Today bestselling author of the Brenna Spector series returns with her most ambitious book to date, a spellbinding novel of psychological suspense, set in the glamorous, wealthy world of Hollywood—a darkly imaginative and atmospheric tale of revenge and betrayal, presumed guilt and innocence lost, dirty secrets and family ties reminiscent of the bestsellers of Laura Lippman, Gillian Flynn, and Harlan Coben.

Nobody’s perfect. Everybody’s got a drawer somewhere with something hidden in it.

On June 28, 1980—the hottest night of the year—Kelly Michelle Lund shoots and kills Oscar-nominated director John McFadden at a party in his home. . . . And instantly becomes a media sensation, her chilling smile fodder for national nightmares. For years, speculation swirls over the enigmatic seventeen-year-old’s motives, information she’s refused to share. Convicted of the murder, she loses her youth and her freedom—but keeps her secrets to herself.

Thirty years later—and five years after her release from prison—the past has come back to haunt Kelly. Her father-in-law, movie legend Sterling Marshall, is found in a pool of blood in his home in the Hollywood Hills—dead from a shot to the head, just like his old friend John McFadden.

Once again, Kelly is suspected of the high profile murder. But this time, she’s got some unexpected allies who believe she’s innocent—of both killings—and want to help her clear her name. But is she?

Written with masterful precision and control, What Remains of Me brilliantly moves forward and back in time, playing out the murders side by side—interweaving subtle connections and peeling away layers of events to reveal the shocking truth.

Buy Links:

Our Review:

Reviewed by Donna ~ 4 stars

“The world’s a stage, Little Miss, but very few of us get to write our own roles.”

This is one of those books where you have to have your wits about you. There is a lot to comprehend and digest, a lot of clues and information disguised cleverly in contrived sentences where the author knows exactly what she is doing, but that is the beauty of a thriller and this author definitely delivered.

Hollywood is notoriously full of influential people, holed up in their multi-million dollar houses, cavorting around with god knows who and who knows where. Where fame and fortune is paramount to social acceptance and it is definitely not what you know but who you know. Alison Gaylin portrays this perfectly as the children of the Hollywood glitterati get caught up in the parties, booze and drugs that leads to questionable decisions and actions.

This book is told through the voice of Kelly Michelle Lund, a convicted murderer that has since been released from prison. The time line flits back from past to present as the past details the events leading up to the then seventeen-year-old girl that committed the most heinous crime, the murder of famous movie director, John McFadden. One where she showed no remorse and where the paps caught a smirk for which she will forever be known… “The Mona Lisa Death Smile” was forever immortalised in picture and print.

“It isn’t what you do that makes you lose people…it’s what they think you’ve done.”

The present is Kelly stuck in a seemingly loveless marriage, holed up permanently as she battles to shed the stigma that surrounds her even after all this time. When her father in law, Sterling Marshall turns up dead in similar circumstances to his best friend, John McFadden all eyes once again turn to the “Mona Lisa” murderer and Kelly once again finds herself thrust into the media spotlight for all the wrong reasons. The media have already tried her and found her guilty, the police are hot on their tails trying to prove it.

For me Kelly was totally misunderstood and for once I actually found myself rooting for the murderer. With the flashbacks to the past I found myself constantly contradicting myself and reading in between the lines as my common sense constantly picked at what I was reading. I found myself consciously picking apart things and found myself questioning the validity of her first conviction. This book is full of red herrings, ones that I am now rather fond of, because it was this that made this unputdownable.

Hollywood is born and raised on secrets, everyone has them, everyone uses them to their advantage but some are born from love and are taken to the grave. Kelly was a young girl striving for acceptance, for a sense of belonging to someone. To be someone’s friend, confidante and lover. This pushed her into circles her mother warned her about and ones that had ultimately taken the life of her sister, but Kelly pushed on for that one thing she had always wanted, yet ultimately cost her…her freedom.

Alison Gaylin cleverly creates one hell of a tangled web and she is the spider surreptitiously awaiting you to fall victim to her trap. With twists and turns aplenty this story will give you whiplash and will definitely have your grey matter working at the rate of knots. For me, I couldn’t put this down, I was frantic to know not only who had killed her father in law but also how she came to be convicted of murder the first time.  Nothing is ever as it seems. I loved this book and I cannot wait to read more from this author. My current drive in the crime thriller genre shows no sign of abating.