Cover Reveal: Four Weddings and a Fireman by Jennifer Bernard

Today is just a teaser – but you can (and should – I did) go and Pre-Order this book now.  Fireman = heat.  Heat claims Hearts.  And don’t we all love Avon Romance?

It takes a certain kind of man to stand out among the
Bachelor Firemen of San Gabriel.

Firefighter Derek “Vader” Brown is one of a kind—six feet of solid muscle with the heart of a born hero. It’s that protective streak that has him pursuing a promotion to Captain to pay for his mother’s home care. And it’s why he intends to figure out why his sometime girlfriend Cherie Harper runs hot as hellfire one minute and pushes him away the next.

Cherie’s got it bad. Vader sweeps her off her feet—literally—and their chemistry is combustible. There’s just the little problem of a nightmare from her past she was desperate to escape. And then her sister Trixie arrives, causing havoc for Cherie and the male population of San Gabriel. Cherie doesn’t want her past to complicate Vader’s life or his career. But there’s nothing like a firefighter for breaking through all your defenses, one smoldering kiss at a time…

FourWeddingsFireman.LoResSo – what to do now?  Go and Pre-Order it from
Amazon  §  Barnes & Noble 
Releasing 25 February, 2014 

Then follow Jennifer in the links below for updates!

Jennifer Bernard is the author of the Bachelor Firemen of San Gabriel series for Avon Books, including The Fireman Who Loved Me, Hot for Fireman, and Sex and the Single Fireman. She’s a graduate of Harvard and a former news promo producer. The child of academics, she confounded her family by preferring romance novels to any other books. She left big city life for true love in Alaska, where she now lives with her husband and stepdaughters. No stranger to book success, she also writes erotic novellas under a naughty secret name not to be mentioned at family gatherings. 

You can learn more about Jennifer at her website, enjoy giveaways and sexy firemen at her Facebook page, hang out with her on Twitter as @Jen_Bernard, and sign up for her newsletter for exclusive excerpts and contests. 

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Dancing With Paris by Juliette Sobanet ~ Review and Giveaway

dancing-with-paris-bannerToday I have a lovely romance with time-travel and suspense elements from author  Juliette Sobanet.  Additionally, the publisher has graciously offered 3 lucky winners the opportunity for their own eBook copy of the book in kindle format, open to international entrants!  The drawing information is below… be sure to enter!

Juliette Sobanet Title:  Dancing with Paris
Author: Juliette Sobanet
Format:  Paperback, eBook, MP3 CD and AudioBook
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Pages:  324
ISBN:  978-1477805916
Source:  Publisher via NetGalley
Genre: Romance, Time-Travel, Suspense, Historical
Stars: 4
Purchase Now:  Amazon § Audible

About the Book: 

In Paris, a past life promises a second chance at love.

Straitlaced marriage therapist Claudia Davis had a plan—and it definitely did not involve getting pregnant from a one-night stand or falling for a gorgeous French actor. She thinks her life can’t possibly get more complicated. But when Claudia takes a tumble in her grandmother’s San Diego dance studio, she awakens in 1950s Paris in the body of Ruby Kerrigan, the glamorous star of a risqué cabaret—and the number-one suspect in the gruesome murder of a fellow dancer. As past lives go, it’s a doozy…especially when an encounter with a handsome and mysterious French doctor ignites a fire in Claudia’s sinfully beautiful new body.

But time, for all its twists and turns, is not on her side: Claudia has just five days to unmask the true killer, clear Ruby’s name, and return to the twenty-first century. To do so, she must make an impossible choice, one that will change the course of both of her lives forever.

-Amount of sex/violence: This book is a romance novel with time travel and murder mystery elements. There are two sex scenes and a few light murder scenes in the novel. There is a great deal of description of 1950s Paris as well.

Book Review:

In an interesting twist on my usual time-travel / romance trope, we are introduced to Claudia in 2012 San Diego. She is mildly dissatisfied with her life at the moment, pregnant by one man while desperately in love with another: who truly does seem to be the one for her. Very quickly, we are removed to 1950’s Paris, where Claudia awakens to find herself in the body of Ruby, a Parisian cabaret headliner who also happens to be Claudia’s grandmother’s best friend. Confused yet? I was at first – for we don’t have a great deal of time to know Claudia and gain a solid sense of her situation and character before we are whisked off to Paris and need to make sense of the situation that Claudia is currently embroiled in.

Not content to make this a simple parallel lives story: Ruby/Claudia is the primary suspect in a murder that she did not commit, and she must find the real killer and save Ruby from her current fate before she can return to her own life in San Diego. As if that wasn’t enough stress: with new situations, a new view of her grandmother and the Paris to rediscover in its past form, she has only five days in which to solve the mystery and set lives on a new path.

A complex and highly ambitious plotting arc and storyline for any author, but Juliette Sobanet is certainly up to the task. While there were moments of confusion, it gave me the feel of being Claudia/Ruby and the pacing, characterization and narration all aided in my getting up to speed, much as Claudia/Ruby needed to do. Then, since I mistakenly thought I had the mystery and murder pieces sorted out, the quick twists and turns proved to me that I was wrong, yet the answer was there, just awaiting discovery.

The city of Paris is just gorgeous and so very present in the story: from the descriptions and feel to the sense of ‘difference’, it fed every memory I have of the city at that time from photos that my grandmother had tucked into a scrapbook from when my aunt first moved there in mid-1950. Sobanet’s prose is lush and well-suited to the city and the story. The interwoven romance from present to past, while bringing a sense of Claudia’s current love to the character of Antoine, with their similar behaviors and concerns and their obvious affection for her was a smooth transition that gave more insight into Claudia and her modern life, while maintaining a true feel to the past.

While it will seem from this review that the story was hard to follow, or overly complex – I truly apologize. It was an exceedingly smooth read that never let up on the entertainment, and kept me involved and engaged with each page. Although I do wish that there was more sense of Claudia in the present and a sense of a solid conclusion for her story, it left me satisfied and smiling. I now want to read the author’s other titles, and have put them on my list.

I received an eBook copy from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

 

Giveaway:  

As I mentioned before, the publisher has graciously offered 3 eBook copies of the title for lucky winners.  Drawing will end at 23:59 on 14 August -winners will be notified via email.  Enter via this Rafflecopter.

About the Author: 

Juliette Sobanet earned a B.A. from Georgetown University and an M.A. from New York University in France, living and studying in both Lyon and Paris. She worked as a French professor before turning a new page in her career, penning romantic women’s fiction with a French twist. She is the author of Sleeping with Paris, Kissed in ParisMidnight Train to Paris, Dancing with Paris, and the upcoming Honeymoon in Paris. Today she lives with her husband and two cats in San Diego, where she devotes her time to writing and dreaming about her next trip to France.

Website § Facebook  § @JulietteSobanet

Tour Stop: Omega Mine by Aline Hunter

omegamine_msrTitle: Omega Mine
Author:  Aline Hunter
Format:  Paperback and eBook
Publisher:  Ellora’s Cave
Pages:  296
ISBN:  978-1419934827
Source:  Smexy Fab Four Tours
Genre: Erotic Paranormal Romance
Series: Alpha and Omega Series # 1
Best Read in Order: Not Applicable
Stars: 3
Flames: 4
Purchase Now:  Amazon § Publisher § Barnes&Noble  §  AllRomance 

About the Book:

A bond forged in blood. Fealty given to the one he desires above all others.

Graced with the ability to shift into any form, Diskant Black is the absolute authority when it comes to New York shifters, and as the Omega of the city, his word is law. Protecting the shifter races is more than a job, it’s a predisposition ingrained since birth–nothing is more important. Until a chance encounter with a tiny female sets fire to his blood, brings him to his knees and turns his world upside down. Ava Brisbane is more than he bargained for in a mate–beautiful, fragile…human. If he wants to keep her by his side, he’ll have to sacrifice a portion of his soul to establish a bond that can never be broken.

Unfortunately, the timing couldn’t be worse. Shepherds–hunters of all the shifter races–have arrived in New York. To protect the woman he can’t live without, Diskant will have to stand against those who have come to start a war.

Book Review: 

I had some interesting thoughts on this book, and my reaction to it is still mixed: even though there are many who found it tremendous. Firstly, the story does have some unique elements: it isn’t often that I come across a shifter novel with a shifter who is capable of transformation to any form he chooses, and is supremely alpha in each one. That was both a unique and fun twist, which managed to give a point to the author for originality. Unfortunately, every single “bad boy” generalization that could be used to define the character of Diskant: tattoos, Harley, snarky attitude that borders on bully, and promiscuity. So he was described beautifully – and is handsome, but I could have done without the stereotypes. The story had a great set up to be different, and unique, and that just took the edge off for me.

Now, Hunter again worked to redeem the story in creating the character of Ava: giving her a compelling story and troubles with family that so many of us can relate to. But the emotional connection that I would have hoped to see from the characters just didn’t feel authentic, no matter how often I was told about it. And therein lies the rub – I was told. Repeatedly. Not shown. It wasn’t until near the end of the story that their combined forces actually created a tentative emotional connection that I could see and believe in. When you combined those issues with some overly complex yet poorly drafted sentences that served little purpose but to add to confusion and half-define metaphors that would have been basic, at best, the story becomes a bit of a ‘meh’ for me.

Passably good book that needs another round of editing and tightening, there are some great ideas here that just didn’t grab me and demand that I turn that page. This just wasn’t, unfortunately, the read for me. Go, check it out – read the reviews and a sample – it may be your next must have!

I received an eBook copy for purpose of honest review for Smexy Fab Four tour. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

About the Author:

Aline Hunter is the alias of multi-published author J.A. Saare, who has written stories featured in horror magazines, zombie romance anthologies, and flash fiction contests. Her work has a notable dark undertone, which she credits to her love of old eighties horror films, tastes in music, and choices in reading, and have been described as “full of sensual promise,” “gritty and sexy,” and “a breath of fresh air.”

Currently she is penning multiple projects within the urban fantasy, erotic and contemporary, and paranormal romance categories. You can visit her online at www.alinehunter.com. Those interested in her tamer side can learn more by visiting www.jasaare.com.

Tour: Buying Thyme by T.J. Hamilton

18040477
Title
:  Buying Thyme
Author:  T.J. Hamilton
Format:  Paperback and eBook
Publisher:  Self-Published
Pages:  306
ISBN:  978-1484145999
Source:  Smexy Fab Four Tours
Genre:  Contemporary Erotic Romance
Series:  The Thyme Trilogy
Best Read in Order:  Not Required
Stars:  4
Flames:  4
Purchase Now:  Amazon § Barnes&Noble § Sony § Kobo § Diesel
About the Book:

Miranda is a high-class escort at the most prestigious escort agency in Sydney, Australia. Her Madam, Miss Stephanie commands the highest standard from her working girls and has taught Miranda the very best in the art of seducing men. Although it was never the life Miranda imagined for herself, she makes more than a decent living from it and always seems to be in demand from the Agency’s top clients.

American-born Joe Tench is one of Sydney’s most prominent businessman, owning the majority of the nightlife in Sydney, and across the country, but there is a dark side to Joe Tench. He is a regular client of Miranda’s, he is also demanding, dominating and hard to handle. Miranda finds herself falling for Joe Tench’s unfamiliar, yet enticing charm. Until she meets Tom Smythe, heir to a wealthy mining company and is amongst the top ten wealthiest families in Australia. The two develop a strong friendship after a chance meeting. Miranda is caught between her feelings for these two very different men until a personal tragedy sees Miranda embark on a journey of discovery… and into a world she finds difficult to escape from.

Book Review:

Interesting premise that had a bit of a slow start for me and the ending felt rushed, but the high points of the story more than made up for the issues.  Hamilton has created a story that is rife for discussion, her main character Miranda is a prostitute, and that alone is a different perspective.  Her development and character are well-crafted with a solid sense of the conflicts that she has in her chosen position, and how she attempts to maintain a more normal and socially acceptable life in her off hours.

Sydney is also a character in this story, with specific detail that will speak to residents and visitors, bringing a whole new view on the city with the famous Opera House.  Also the incorporation of multiple characters from different cultures is very true to the city, and provided a nice slice of life that was very realistic and honest.  While the sex trade does play a large part in the premise and the construct of this story, most is handled with a deft hand and feels less ‘dark underbelly’, partly due to Miranda’s very succinct and concise approach to her position, and the well-written sex scenes that don’t venture into the overly raunchy while maintaining their steam factor.

Secondary characters are well drawn and introduced with solid voicing and traits that allow them to be distinct and relevant in their input and interactions: every character has admirable and not so admirable traits and beliefs keeping us out of the territory of total fantasy and providing characters that are easy to understand, even if relating to them is too much to expect.

Hamilton has started a series that will have many fans. Even with the slow starts and occasional dragging as scenes are established, the supposed allure of this career choice are clearly defined and exampled, and give a sense of the reasons why it would be an option for some.

I received an eBook from the Smexy Fab Four for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

About the Author: 

TJ Hamilton is a former cop turned writer. TJ uses her experiences over the years of working the streets of Sydney as a tough cop to now write sexy stories of mystery and intrigue. Her first love, the city of Sydney, is a perfect base for her stories and she loves using actual locations to add a little realism to her books. TJ’s sits back to enjoy her time as a devoted momma and wifey to a handsome model, and spends her days re-living the action packed life she may have once had through her fictional characters.

Website §  @T_J_Hamilton

AudioBook Review: Passion at Dawn: Bytes of Life # 4 by Chris Almeida and Cecilia Aubrey

616vyF+LIUL._SS500_Title: Passion at Dawn
Series: Countermeasure: Bytes of Life # 4
Author: Chris Almeida and Cecilia Aubrey
Narrator: Tim Gerard Reynolds
Publisher: Eire Publishing
ISBN:  978-0988111295
Formats:  eBook and AudioBook
Pages:  52
Length:  1 Hour; 34 minutes
Buy Audio Book:  Audible § iTunes § Amazon
Where to buy: Countermeasure All Links
Stars :  5 Overall  5 Narration  5 Story

WARNING: Contains scenes of mature subject matter, graphic situations and language. Reader discretion is advised.

In the fourth Countermeasure: Byte of Life, Trevor and Cassandra Bauer have settled into married life after facing the bumpy road to the altar. While Cassandra looks for ways to spice up their love life, Trevor questions his efficacy as a husband. His insecurities are compounded by the constant threat of Nathan Nelson, her old friend and past lover, who can’t accept their marriage as final. A brand new marriage, personal uncertainties, and a good dose of alpha geek jealousy make for a volatile mix. When a phone call spurs him to lay claim to what is his and give Cassandra the fantasies she craves, Trevor reacts like any hot blooded man would. The result is a steamy room, slippery bodies, and Passion at Dawn.

Countermeasure: Bytes of Life is a tie-in series to the Countermeasure Series novels. This new series of shorts gives the readers glimpses into the day-to-day life of the  characters.

The main novels in the Countermeasure Series are action-packed plot-driven stories, while the short stories in the Bytes of Life Series are character-driven and a way to develop the characters as the main series moves forward. Please be advised that ALL short stories in this series contain EROTIC material. They are NOT recommended for younger audience. Although some of the events that take place in the short stories might be referenced in the novels and vice-versa, the short stories are not compulsory for the understanding of the series. They enhance the experience.

AudioBook Review:

One of the fun things with reviewing is the occasional opportunity to revisit a title that I have read previously, and get a whole new perspective on the work. This is one of the short additional content novellas that provide further character insight to readers of the Countermeasure series: a series that is part action, part mystery and part romance and follows the former NSA computer geek Trevor and his new wife and ex CIA operative Cassandra.

In this short, a snapshot of their lives when they are not working a case is the focus, and we see just how fragile an ego can be. What is reinforced for the reader is their relatively short acquaintance, and the fact that they have much to learn about one another, like any other couple. Throughout this series, we don’t often see the insecurities and fears: and Trevor’s are on full display in jealous reactions, somber moments and an unusual snappiness with his father in law.

Narration in this short is provided by Tim Gerard Reynolds, and his smooth delivery with subtle changes in pitch and tone, a slight deepening of the Irish in his accent and his vivid and accurate inflections that depict emotional turmoil, tension and gasping need are nothing short of perfect for this story.

Again, for readers of the Countermeasure series, these shorts are nice interludes to give us more of what we want: Cassie and Trevor. And, even more than we would expect, and no one will walk away from this short story without a small shiver of excitement and anticipation when seeing a can of whipped cream on a refrigerator shelf. Yes, there are several scenes that increase the eroticism of these stories, but these are not simply voyeuristic entertainment: the connection and obvious love between them shines through.

I received an AudioBook version of the book for purpose of honest review for the Heard Word. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

 

About the Authors

Writing had touched Chris Almeida’s and Cecilia Aubrey’s lives in different ways through the years but had never taken flight. It was in 2010, when Chris and Cecilia met and began role-playing online as a hobby, that writing placed itself front and center in their lives.

Chris and Cecilia have since chosen to release all their titles independently. They have several short stories and two novels published under their own label, Éire Publishing, and are vocal supporters of independent publishing done right. They are currently working on the third novel in their series. Through all the chaos and laughter, they still hold true to their roots, bringing their favorite role-play characters and stories to life.

You can find out more about them on their author and series websites:

Where to follow:

Website  Φ  Series Website  Φ  Series at Facebook  Φ  Facebook Group Φ Author Page

Individual Links to Facebook:   Chris  Φ  Cecilia 

Twitter: Chris  Φ  Cecilia  Φ  Combined 

Goodreads:  Cecilia  Φ  Chris