Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway: THE GIRL WITH THE MAKE-BELIEVE HUSBAND by Julia Quinn

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THE GIRL WITH THE MAKE-BELIEVE HUSBAND (Rokesbys #2) by Julia Quinn

Publication Date: May 30, 2017

Genre: Historical Romance

Synopsis

GIRL WITH THE MAKE BELIEVE HUSBANDWhile you were sleeping…

With her brother Thomas injured on the battlefront in the Colonies, orphaned Cecilia Harcourt has two unbearable choices: move in with a maiden aunt or marry a scheming cousin. Instead, she chooses option three and travels across the Atlantic, determined to nurse her brother back to health. But after a week of searching, she finds not her brother but his best friend, the handsome officer Edward Rokesby. He’s unconscious and in desperate need of her care, and Cecilia vows that she will save this soldier’s life, even if staying by his side means telling one little lie…

I told everyone I was your wife

When Edward comes to, he’s more than a little confused. The blow to his head knocked out six months of his memory, but surely he would recall getting married. He knows who Cecilia Harcourt is—even if he does not recall her face—and with everyone calling her his wife, he decides it must be true, even though he’d always assumed he’d marry his neighbor back in England.

If only it were true…

Cecilia risks her entire future by giving herself—completely—to the man she loves. But when the truth comes out, Edward may have a few surprises of his own for the new Mrs. Rokesby.

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Excerpt

Manhattan Island
July 1779

His head hurt.
​Correction, his head really hurt.
​It was hard to tell, though, just what sort of pain it was. He might have been shot through the head with a musket ball. That seemed plausible, given his current location in New York (or was it Connecticut?) and his current occupation as a captain in His Majesty’s army.
​There was a war going on, in case one hadn’t noticed.
​But this particular pounding—the one that felt more like someone was bashing his skull with a cannon (not a cannonball, mind you, but an actual cannon) seemed to indicate that he had been attacked with a blunter instrument than a bullet.
​An anvil, perhaps. Dropped from a second-story window.
​But if one cared to look on the bright side, a pain such as this did seem to indicate that he wasn’t dead, which was also a plausible fate, given all the same facts that had led him to believe he might have been shot.
​That war he’d mentioned… people did die.
​With alarming regularity.
​So he wasn’t dead. That was good. But he also wasn’t sure where he was, precisely. The obvious next step would be to open his eyes, but his eyelids were translucent enough for him to realize that it was the middle of the day, and while he did like to look on the metaphorical bright side, he was fairly certain that the literal one would prove blinding.
​So he kept his eyes closed.
​But he listened.
​He wasn’t alone. He couldn’t make out any actual conversation, but a low buzz of words and activity filtered through the air. People were moving about, setting objects on tables, maybe pulling a chair across the floor.
​Someone was moaning in pain.
​Most of the voices were male, but there was at least one lady nearby. She was close enough that he could hear her breathing. She made little noises as she went about her business, which he soon realized included tucking blankets around him and touching his forehead with the back of her hand.
​He liked these little noises, the tiny little mmms and sighs she probably had no idea she was making. And she smelled nice, a bit like lemons, a bit like soap.
​And a bit like hard work.
​He knew that smell. He’d worn it himself, albeit usually only briefly until it turned into a full-fledged stink.
​On her, though, it was more than pleasant. Perhaps a little earthy. And he wondered who she was, to be tending to him so diligently.
​“How is he today?”
​Edward held himself still. This male voice was new, and he wasn’t sure he wanted anyone to know he was awake yet.
​Although he wasn’t sure why he felt this hesitancy.
​“The same,” came the woman’s reply.
​“I am concerned. If he doesn’t wake up soon…”
​“I know,” the woman said. There was a touch of irritation in her voice, which Edward found curious.
​“Have you been able to get him to take broth?”
​“Just a few spoonfuls. I was afraid he would choke if I attempted any more than that.”
​The man made a vague noise of approval. “Remind me how long he has been like this?”
​“A week, sir. Four days before I arrived, and three since.”
​A week. Edward thought about this. A week meant it must be… March? April?
​No, maybe it was only February. And this was probably New York, not Connecticut.
​But that still didn’t explain why his head hurt so bloody much. Clearly he’d been in some sort of an accident. Or had he been attacked?
​“There has been no change at all?” the man asked, even though the lady had just said as much.
​But she must have had far more patience than Edward, because she replied in a quiet, clear voice, “No, sir. None.”
​The man made a noise that wasn’t quite a grunt. Edward found it impossible to interpret.
​“Er…” The woman cleared her throat. “Have you any news of my brother?”
​Her brother? Who was her brother?
​“I am afraid not, Mrs. Rokesby.”
Mrs. Rokesby?
​“It has been nearly two months,” she said quietly.
​Mrs. Rokesby? Edward really wanted them to get back to that point. There was only one Rokesby in North America as far as he knew, and that was him. So if she was Mrs. Rokesby…
​“I think,” the male voice said, “that your energies would be better spent tending to your husband.”
Husband?
​“I assure you,” she said, and there was that touch of irritation again, “that I have been caring for him most faithfully.”
​Husband? They were calling him her husband? Was he married? He couldn’t be married. How could he be married and not remember it?
Who was this woman?
​Edward’s heart began to pound. What the devil was happening to him?
​“Did he just make a noise?” the man asked.
​“I… I don’t think so.”
​She moved then, quickly. Hands touched him, his cheek, then his chest, and even through her obvious concern, there was something soothing in her motions, something undeniably right.
​“Edward?” she asked, taking his hand. She stroked it several times, her fingers brushing lightly over his skin. “Can you hear me?”
​He ought to respond. She was worried. What kind of gentleman did not act to relieve a lady’s distress?
​“I fear he may be lost to us,” the man said, with far less gentleness than Edward thought appropriate.
​“He still breathes,” the woman said in a steely voice.
​The man said nothing, but his expression must have been one of pity, because she said it again, more loudly this time.
​“He still breathes.”
​“Mrs. Rokesby…”
​Edward felt her hand tighten around his. Then she placed her other on top, her fingers resting lightly on his knuckles. It was the smallest sort of embrace, but Edward felt it down to his soul.
​“He still breathes, Colonel,” she said with quiet resolve. “And while he does, I will be here. I may not be able to help Thomas, but—”
Thomas. Thomas Harcourt. That was the connection. This must be his sister. Cecilia. He knew her well.
​Or not. He’d never actually met the lady, he felt like he knew her. She wrote to her brother with a diligence that was unmatched in the regiment. Thomas received twice as much mail as Edward, and Edward had four siblings to Thomas’s one.
​Cecilia Harcourt. What on earth was she doing in North America? She was supposed to be in Derbyshire, in that little town Thomas had been so eager to leave. The one with the hot springs. Matlock. No, Matlock Bath.
​Edward had never been, but he thought it sounded charming. Not the way Thomas described it, of course; he liked the bustle of city life and couldn’t wait to take a commission and depart his village. But Cecilia was different. In her letters, the small Derbyshire town came alive, and Edward almost felt that he would recognize her neighbors if he ever went to visit.
​She was witty. Lord, she was witty. Thomas used to laugh so much at her missives that Edward finally made him read them out loud.
​Then one day, when Thomas was penning his response, Edward interrupted so many times that Thomas finally shoved out his chair and held forth his quill.
​“You write to her,” he’d said.
​So he did.
​Not on his own, of course. Edward could never have written to her directly. It would have been the worst sort of impropriety, and he would not have insulted her in such a manner. But he took to scribbling a few lines at the end of Thomas’s letters, and whenever she replied, she had a few lines for him.
​Thomas carried a miniature of her, and even though he said it was several years old, Edward had found himself staring at it, studying the small portrait of the young woman, wondering if her hair really was that remarkable golden color, or if she really did smile that way, lips closed and mysterious.
​Somehow he thought not. She did not strike him as a woman with secrets. Her smile would be sunny and free. Edward had even thought he’d like to meet her once this godforsaken war was over. He’d never said anything to Thomas, though.
​That would have been strange.
​Now Cecilia was here. In the colonies. Which made absolutely no sense, but then again, what did? Edward’s head was injured, and Thomas seemed to be missing, and…
​Edward thought hard.
​…and he seemed to have married Cecilia Harcourt.
​He opened his eyes and tried to focus on the green-eyed woman peering down at him.
​“Cecilia?”

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Cori 3.5 Stars review

THE GIRL WITH THE MAKE-BELIEVE HUSBAND is the second book in Julia Quinn’s Rokesbys series, but can be read as a standalone. It’s a light and fun historical romance to curl up with this summer. I’ve been on a historical romance reading binge and this was a good one. The romance between Edward and Cecilia was steamy. I thought the plot was good, but I wanted Cecilia to confess her deception sooner and thought it dragged on a little longer than necessary. The ending was satisfying though. I recommend this book for historical romance lovers looking for a steamy love story with a little mystery.

*Review copy provided by Avon Books in exchange for an honest review. 

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Buy Links

AMAZON | B&N | ITUNES | KOBO

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Giveaway

(Win a print copy of BECAUSE OF MISS BRIDGERTON (US Only))

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

julia-homeJulia Quinn is the New York Times bestselling author of twenty-five novels for Avon Books, and one of only sixteen authors ever to be inducted in the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her family.

Author Links: WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS

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Review: A FIRE IN THE BLOOD by Amanda Ashley

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A FIRE IN THE BLOOD by Amanda Ashley

Publication Date: April 25, 2017

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis

IMG_7870“I see a man. He is old. Very old. He will come into your life in a moment of danger. He will watch over you and protect you.” The gypsy’s hand gripped Tessa’s tighter. “He will bring you death,” she whispered, her voice like the rustle of dry leaves. “And life.”

Ten years later, when Andrei Dinescu saves Tessa from a vicious attacker, she has no idea that the handsome stranger the gypsy fortune teller predicted is not a hunter but a seven-hundred-year-old vampire. Darkly powerful, unbelievably compelling, he is obviously pursuing Tessa, but is it her love he’s after or her blood?

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3.5 stars Donna

This was a fun light romp through a dangerous vampire world. Tessa handled her new reality quite easily, but with the handsome vampire Andrea…how could you not. That being said, she sometimes took the new information too easily. The love and romance are there, but light on the sexual aspects. Perfect for those who like their romances less explicit. A fun quick read.

*Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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Buy Links

Kindle http://amzn.to/2nTmRBi | Amazon Paperback http://amzn.to/2pll6xO

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About the Author

Amanda Ashley is one of those rare birds—a California native. She’s lived in Southern California her whole life and, except for the earthquakes, she loves it. She shares a home with her husband, as well as an adorable Pomeranian named Lady, a wild house sparrow named Tweety, and a tortoise who remains nameless. Amanda and her alter ego, Madeline, have written 60 books. Not bad for someone who started writing just for the fun of it. Her books have made the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists. You can get a sneak peek at her next book on her website www.AmandaAshley.com.

Review, Guest Post & Giveaway: BETWEEN A WOLF AND A HARD PLACE by Terry Spear

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BETWEEN A WOLF AND A HARD PLACE (Silver Town Wolf, Book 7) by Terry Spear

Publication Date: April 4, 2017

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis

IMG_7560In Silver Town, the secrets run deep…

Alpha werewolf Brett Silver has an ulterior motive when he donates a prized family heirloom to the Silver Town hotel. Ellie MacTire owns the place with her sisters, and he’s out to get her attention.

Ellie is even more special than Brett knows. She’s a wolf-shifter with a unique ability to commune with the dead. Ellie has been ostracized, so she protects herself and those she loves by revealing nothing—not even when strange and dangerous things begin to happen in Silver Town. And especially not to the devastatingly handsome and generous wolf who’s determined to win her over…

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3.5 stars Donna

This was a fun light story with many angles. Shifters that find themselves in a ghostly mystery. For those of you that like a light romance without a lot of sex – this one is for you. Full of likeable characters and sweet romance. A nice quick read.

*Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an review.

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Author Guest Post

 Terry: I do a lot of research about wolves, so I pick up tons of interesting, true stories.

In one story, one of the wolves was extremely fast at catching prey, but her sister was the alpha leader, and she didn’t like the sister. So she kept trying to chase off the sister, even though she was the best at catching prey. The sister continued to stay with the pack, leaving for a time, and returning. A wolf on its own can easily be killed. When the alpha female died, the alpha male took the sister as his mate and they lived happily ever after.

In another true story, a male wolf wanted to join the pack. A female had lost her mate and he was eager to take his place. She kept chasing him off, and her packmates followed suit. So he followed them, leaving for a time, and returning. He had the hots for her and he wasn’t giving up. She finally liked his persistence and took him as her mate. True alpha hero.

In one situation, a female puppy was off exploring like an omega wolf, not fighting with the others to show who was top wolf. A nanny wolf kept forcing her to be with the other wolves. The pack’s adult omega was happy to have her take his place. But she ended up being the pack leader’s mate when she grew up—it proves we can all be capable at reaching the top if we just persist.

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Buy Links

Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

Amazon Series Link

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Giveaway

Paperback Copy of Between a Wolf and a Hard Place 

LINK TO FACEBOOK GIVEAWAY POST

*Paperback provided by Sourcebooks.

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About the Author

USA Today bestselling author TERRY SPEAR has written over 35 paranormal romances featuring werewolf and jaguar shapeshifters. In 2008, Heart of the Wolf was named a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry also creates award-winning teddy bears that have found homes all over the world. She lives in Spring, Texas.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Spotlight, Review & Giveaway: LAST MILE (A Vicious Cycle Novel, Book 3) by Katie Ashley

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LAST MILE (A Vicious Cycle Novel, Book 3) by Katie Ashley 

Publication Date: May 3, 2016

Romantic Suspense/ Contemporary Romance

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imageThe thrilling third romance in the Vicious Cycle series from the New York Times bestselling author of Redemption Road.

After her father was murdered in the line of duty, ATF agent Samantha Vargas is determined to take down the scumbags of the drug trade. When her partner takes on a case to infiltrate the Hells Raiders MC, Samantha agrees to go undercover as his old lady, but is surprised to find herself drawn to the very man she is investigating, Benjamin “Bishop” Malloy.

Even though she’s determined to bring down the Raiders, Samantha discovers their world isn’t as black and white as she thought. And as the stakes grow higher, she’s in danger of losing more than her heart.

Story Locale: Georgia

Series Overview: Prepare for a wicked ride with the men of the Hells Raiders motorcycle club and the women who rev their engines…

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Excerpt

I rose off the picnic bench. As I set my longneck down, I could feel Bishop’s eyes burning into my back. When I glanced at him over my shoulder, his eyebrows rose questioningly. Slowly, I turned around. As I met his blazing baby blues, I held out my hand. His body shuddered slightly before he leaned up to put his hand in mine. I tugged him up off the bench, pulling him close to me.
His warm breath against my cheek, causing me to shiver with building anticipation. “What are you doing, Sam?”
Without a moment’s hesitation, I replied, “Getting you to take me somewhere we can be alone.”
He pulled back to look at me. Both longing and regret flickered on his handsome face. “You gotta know that nothing good is gonna come with me being alone with you right now.”
“I know.”
“And you’re okay with that?”
It was the same question raging through my mind. Did I want to fuck Bishop to get in even deeper with him because of the case or was it because I was starting to feel more for him than I should? In the end, I tuned out the voices in my head. “Yeah, I am,” I responded, my voice resonating with certainty.
With a brief nod, Bishop tugged on my hand and started leading me away from the others. We went around the back of the clubhouse and then passed the pawnshop. As we continued walking, the lights grew dimmer and dimmer until we found ourselves in shadowy darkness. Bishop stopped us in front a tall chain-link fence that ran the length of the property.
After gazing around, I swallowed hard. I’d never had sex out in the open before, and I could feel my once firm resolve slowly fading. “Here?”
“It’s really the only place we can be alone with all the brothers being in from out of town. I gave up my room in the clubhouse.” A lustful gleam burned in Bishop’s eyes as he pulled me against him. I could feel the hardened length of him through his jeans. “But if you want, I’ll put you on the back of my bike and take you anywhere you want to go.”
Deep down, I knew it was right here and right now, or I was going to lose both my nerve and my buzz.I brought my arms up to wrap around his neck. “I just want to be with you.” I drew his head down to where our lips were almost touching. We stayed like that for a few seconds, both of our chests heaving and our bodies trembling. This was our figurative cliff, and we were just inches from free-falling off it. Before we could think any more about it, Bishop crushed his lips against mine.
For such a hardened, tough guy, his lips were so very smooth. They felt as soft as velvet as they moved against mine. I tightened my arms around his neck, drawing him as close to me as I could. My breasts strained against the bulging muscles of his chest.
I couldn’t seem to get close enough to him. I had to fight the urge to jump up and wrap my legs around his waist and grind myself against him. As his warm tongue entered my mouth, I moaned. He proved within seconds he was one hell of a kisser. He was also one for multitasking, because as his tongue caressed mine, his hand palmed my breast through the fabric of my dress. My nipple pebbled under his fingertips, and I gasped when he pinched it between his thumb and forefinger. While one hand continued to knead my breast, the other dipped below the hem of my dress. I sucked in a breath when it skimmed against my thigh before journeying farther upward. It had been too damn long since a man had touched me, and as Bishop’s hand cupped me, my head fell back, banging against the fence.
“Fucking hell. You’re drenched,” Bishop said in a ragged voice.
“I know,” I groaned. Gazing up at him, I said, “Please, don’t stop touching me.”
“Hmm, I like the sound of you begging.” His fingers began to work me over my panties, but I wanted more. I wantonly kicked my legs apart, spreading them as far as I could for him. Bishop read my mind by jerking my panties to the side and thrusting two fingers deep inside me.
“Oh yes!” I cried, moving my hips against his hand. At that point, I didn’t give two shits if anyone at the party could see or hear us. I just wanted to come.

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3.5 stars Donna

I have enjoyed the Vicious Cycle series but I have to admit that this one seemed a little rushed. The storyline was riveting however, and I couldn’t wait to see how things turned out with all the twists and turns. Bishop was someone that I warmed to immediately in more ways than one, and I was glad that Samantha finally brought me around to liking her. All in all it’s a good story and a quick read.

*Review copy provided by Penguin in exchange for an honest review. 

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Kindle http://amzn.to/1MhgsB1
Amazon PBK http://amzn.to/1Op3ENs
B&N http://bit.ly/1jeEq8v
Kobo http://bit.ly/1G0TWiM
iBooks http://apple.co/1WQfdAd

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VICIOUS CYCLE SERIES BY KATIE ASHLEY

Vicious Cycle (Book 1) – REVIEW
Publication Date: June 2, 2015
Kindle http://amzn.to/1wJXEJs
Amazon PBK http://amzn.to/1wJYhCR
B&N http://bit.ly/1L9Njrj
Kobo http://bit.ly/17WnldV
iBooks http://apple.co/1jRRNMx

Redemption Road (Book 2) – REVIEW
Publication Date: October 6, 2015
Kindle $5.99 http://amzn.to/1MU2eJa
Amazon PBK $10.86 http://amzn.to/1MU2bNt
B&N http://bit.ly/1RwNqBM
Kobo http://bit.ly/1RwNuBD
iBooks http://apple.co/1G0Ufdz

Last Mile (Book 3)
Publication Date: May 3, 2016
Kindle http://amzn.to/1MhgsB1
Amazon PBK http://amzn.to/1Op3ENs
B&N http://bit.ly/1jeEq8v
Kobo http://bit.ly/1G0TWiM
iBooks http://apple.co/1WQfdAd

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imageEnter to win a Paperback Copy of LAST MILE by Katie Ashley

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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  Katie Ashley is the New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon Best-Selling author of The Proposition Series, Runaway Train Series, as well as several New Adult and Young Adult titles. Her latest series, Vicious Cycle, has been picked up for publication by Penguin Books.

She lives outside of Atlanta, Georgia with her two very spoiled dogs. She has a slight obsession with Pinterest, The Golden Girls, Harry Potter, Shakespeare, Supernatural, Sons of Anarchy, Downton Abbey, Designing Women, and Scooby-Doo.

With a BA in English, a BS in Secondary English Education, and a Masters in English Education, she spent 11 1/2 years educating the Youth of America aka teaching MS and HS English until she left to write full time in December 2012.

Social Media Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

Review: DRAGON SOUL by Katie MacAlister

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DRAGON SOUL by Katie MacAlister

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Publication Date: March 29, 2016

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imageNOTHING BURNS HOTTER . . . 

Sophea Long knows that escorting her octogenarian client to Europe will be an adventure. Mrs. P has a habit of stealing anything shiny, and the former “hoochikoo dancer” is a lot faster than she looks. But Sophea hadn’t counted on Mrs. P leading her right into the arms of a smoldering, dark-haired stranger who kisses like a dream. If only he’d give up all this nonsense about Sophea being some kind of dragon…

THAN THE FIRE INSIDE

There’s a reason Rowan Dakar is known as the Dragon Breaker. The last thing he needs is to fall for a woman who literally sets him aflame every time they kiss. After all, he has a mission-one that will finally free him of dragonkin for good. He can’t afford to be distracted by the funniest, most desirable woman he’s ever set eyes on. But no prophecy in the world can ever stop true love . . .

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I wanted to like this book more than I did. Her crazy dragon world is full of imagination and hijinks that are sometimes hard to keep up with. Rowan and Sophea were fun but don’t expect a sultry romance. It was more rapid dialogue (Sophea never stops talking) and fast paced action. It was unique and I couldn’t wait to see how it ended, which was good because Mrs. P threw a curveball in at the end. It is zany slapstick humor that will make you chuckle, sometimes wince and then wonder just where those dragons will bring you next time.

*Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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Excerpt

READ AN EXCERPT

http://katiemacalister.com/books/dragon-soul/#excerpt

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Kindle | Amazon PBK | B&NiBooksKobo

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BLACK DRAGONS SERIES
✦Book 1: Dragon Fall ➢ REVIEW | Amazon
✦Book 2: Dragon Storm ➢ REVIEW | Amazon
✦Book 3: Dragon Soul ➢ Amazon

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image imageFor as long as she can remember Katie MacAlister has loved reading, and grew up with her nose buried in a book. It wasn’t until many years later that she thought about writing her own books, but once she had a taste of the fun to be had building worlds, tormenting characters, and falling madly in love with all her heroes, she was hooked.

With more than fifty books under her belt, Katie’s novels have been translated into numerous languages, been recorded as audiobooks, received several awards, and are regulars on the New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly bestseller lists. A self-proclaimed gamer girl, she lives in the Pacific Northwest with her dogs, and frequently can be found hanging around online.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Amazon | Goodreads

Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway: Hidden Heat (
Brothers of Mayhem #1) by Carla Swafford

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Hidden Heat (
Brothers of Mayhem #1) by Carla Swafford

Publication Date: February 16, 2016

Synopsis

imageSizzling with passion and suspense, perfect for fans of Joanna Wylde and Julie Ann Walker, the Brothers of Mayhem series revs up as a headstrong beauty faces off against an outlaw motorcycle club—and falls for the bad boy she never saw coming.

Cassidy Ryder refuses to be intimidated by anyone, even the hell-raising, hard-drinking Brothers of Mayhem. The daughter of their former president, she’s not above smashing a few heads to keep her teenage brother safe. But when Cassidy’s big mouth gets her in trouble, the only thing that saves her is some quick thinking from the Brothers’ bartender. He’s commanding and strong, and as smooth as the whiskey he pours: the ultimate temptation for a girl who swore she’d never be a biker’s plaything.

But Thorn Savalas is no ordinary biker. He’s a cop, and he’s worked too hard earning the Brothers’ trust to blow his cover over a female—even one who rocks a pair of jeans like Cassidy. The only way to protect her is by claiming she’s his old lady. Trouble is, Thorn can’t just pretend. He wants Cassidy, and every scorching touch tells him she feels the same. But acting on their hottest fantasies could leave them both exposed . . . even if nothing else has ever felt so real.

Link to Follow Tour

Goodreads Link

Goodreads Series Link

Print

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Cori 3.5 Stars review

Hidden Heat is a fun cop/ biker romance. Yep cop/ biker and I love both so it was a fun read. Thorn has the bad boy biker thing going on but he’s a undercover cop. The story focuses on Thorn and Cassidy. There isn’t a lot of focus on club brotherhood like most biker romances I pick up. The heat between Thron and Cassidy was scorching hot. Their story flowed quickly and I read it from start to finish one afternoon. I’d recommend this book for romance lovers who want a little bit of bad boy in their hero. Hidden Heat was a fun, sexy romance and I’m looking forward to picking up the next book in the series when it comes out.

*Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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Excerpt

Cassidy Ryder swung the bat, testing the weight and reach, as she marched around the line of motorcycles. Wrinkling her nose, she ignored the sharp, pungent smell of marijuana drifting across her path.
Huddled in the shade beneath the building’s eaves, men with greasy hair and beards puffed on tightly rolled joints and eyed her with mild curiosity. As long as she stayed away from their well-loved bikes, they’d let her move on without interference.
Her body trembled with suppressed fury. She almost wished they’d try to stop her. Anything to give her a reason to release the pressure building inside. With a snort of derision, she straightened her back and stalked into the Skull and Bones Bar.
The thumping beat of Kid Rock blasted from the speakers, competing with the rowdy conversations shaking the large, smoky room. Though mostly rural, Sand County had a law against smoking in any public establishment. In pure defiance, a blue-gray haze hovered around the dim bulbs spotlighting the long shelves of liquor and above two pool tables in the back.
She hesitated. Catching movement out of the corner of her eye, she ignored the tall, lanky bartender strolling along behind the counter and heading her way. The rest of the crowd ignored her entrance. Did they often see people carrying a bat into the place?
She didn’t care. Time for someone to listen to her.
With a swing of her whole body, she brought the bat down, sweeping several glasses from the long bar. The loud pops and tinkling of broken glasses immediately quieted the room just as Kid’s “American Bad Ass” faded out. Several of the leather-and-denim clad men stood and stepped toward her.
She lifted the bat for another swing.
“Damn it to hell! Wait!” The bartender slid over the top of the counter to stand in front of her. “What the hell are you doing?”
Speaking of badass, with his broad shoulders and tats down both arms, he’d draw anyone’s attention just by entering a room. But add in the dark hair cut tight on the sides, long on top and brushed back to his nape, he especially caught the eye of every woman in the place. She’d noticed too, but she had more important things on her mind.
Her arm muscles tensed as she pulled her weapon higher over her shoulder.
He stopped a bat length away and raised his hands. “Cassidy . . .” He hesitated as if he waited for her reaction to the name. Was she that forgettable? She’d been there several times over the last month, to drag her brother back home. When her eyes narrowed, he continued. “Whatever has you riled up, can we talk about it?”
Emphasizing each word, she pointed the bat as if it were a finger. “I came in here yesterday and asked, real polite, if you or anyone here had seen my brother. Each one of you looked me in the face and lied. This morning, I get a call, telling me he was seen yesterday, hanging out back, talking with Stonewall.” She glanced around, keeping the bartender in her peripheral view. “Where’s the bastard? I want answers about my brother’s whereabouts.” Proud of how her voice remained even and carried across the room, she jutted out her chin. What would they lie about next?
The Brothers of Mayhem Motorcycle Club never took kindly to threats. She didn’t care. Violence was the only way they would respect her, and she was prepared to do more, if that’s what it took to bring her little brother back home. Storm had never stayed gone this long.
“Put the bat down before you get hurt.” The bartender’s soft command sounded so reasonable.
Screw reasonable. She’d been fair and understanding for the last three days while she searched for Storm. Her patience had disappeared with the only member of her family worth a damn. No way would she fail him again.
“I will when you—”
Brawny arms wrapped around her chest and squeezed. She gasped for breath as someone hauled her against his chest and off her feet. The bartender grabbed the bat from her loosened grip and threw it to the side. It hit the floor with a loud clanking.
“Little girl, we don’t know where your brother’s at. We didn’t lie about that.” The deep voice of the club’s VP, Mac McGee, came from above her head as he squeezed again in warning. “Maybe I need to teach you some fucking manners.”
She squeaked from the pain, her ribs near the breaking point. With little blood circulation reaching below her waist, her kicks were no more than taps to the mountain restraining her. She pushed at the tight arms as her head dug into his sternum.
“Please,” she pleaded with a hiss of precious air.
“Mac, let her go. I’ll handle her.” The bartender rested his elbows on the countertop behind him, crossed his long legs at the ankles, and waited.
The big guy released her so quickly she barely caught herself before falling at their feet. Asshole. Taking cautious breaths in case of a cracked rib, she regained a little of her composure.
Handle her? In his dreams. Shoulders thrust back and head held up, she asked, “Where’s my brother?”
The bartender sighed in frustration. “You’re the most hardheaded woman. Mac told you yesterday, and today is no different. We have no idea where your brother is.”
Then it struck her what the big guy said a moment earlier. She turned and looked into the angry bloodshot eyes of Mac. “What did you mean when you said ‘We didn’t lie about that’? What did you lie about?”
With a shake of his massive, shaggy head, the big guy reached for her, but the bartender knocked her to the side and stepped between them, one arm out to keep her back. “Go on. I’ll take it from here.”
“Never could stand bossy old ladies,” Mac drawled with a sneer.
She leaned over the bartender’s arm and shouted, “Who are you calling old lady? I’m no one’s old lady! You old fart!” She knew what he meant, that it had nothing to do with age, but with belonging to someone. At the age of twenty-one, she refused to let anyone call her that. At sixty-one, she would damn well still refuse.
“Who would want you as their old lady, with that bitchy attitude,” Mac said, more as fact than a question. “You need your ass beaten.” Then he walked away as he raised one finger in her direction.
“Yeah, but at least I look human and not like a grizzly bear, what with all that fur on your face!” How lame.
She really needed to shut up before they got tired of her mouth. As a kid she’d grown up around surly men like Mac, but her father’s reputation had protected her from worse. Besides, what about her promise to be a good girl? Her foster mother tried her best to teach her self-control. Yet Cassidy often let her temper get the better of her. Remembering how her hissy fit had caused her brother to leave home in a huff the other night, a sharp pain roiled in her stomach.
As she opened her mouth to apologize, the bartender’s hand cupped the back of her head, clutched a handful of hair, and twisted. At the same time, his other hand covered her mouth.
“Shh,” he said softly. Concern darkened his blue eyes as he shook his head.
Bending her back, he caused her to lose balance but held her tight. Her feet remained on the floor as he aligned his body with hers, almost touching his nose to hers.
“If you don’t shut your trap, you’re going to get more than you asked for,” he whispered. “Your brother isn’t here. He’s turning eighteen in a couple days, right?” Without giving her a chance to answer, he added, “Then he’ll be an adult. At least one who can vote and die for his country. So, I think it’s in your best interest to go home. When he’s ready to talk, he’ll show up.”
She wasn’t sure why it happened. The last few days had been stressful. She wasn’t one of those girls who did it at the drop of a hat, but her eyes welled with tears.
“Ah, shit. Don’t do that,” he said between gritted teeth. He moved his hand from her mouth, pressing her cheek to a broad shoulder as he lifted her upright.
Unable to stop, she dug trembling fingers into his leather vest and sobbed.
Why is he being so nice?
The strong hand in her hair remained, but the other one rubbed and patted her back. He acted as if he had all of the time in the world while she bawled like a little kid.
“Shh. Everything will be okay.”
She glanced up and her heart skipped a beat. The guy had a gorgeous smile; there was even a dimple beneath the stubble on his face.
A gravelly voice nearby said, “Get me a beer, Thorn, before you fuck her.”
Her body stiffened.
Stonewall had arrived.

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Giveaway

$25.00 Amazon eGift Card

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Buy Links

$2.99 Kindle | B&N | iTunes | Kobo

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About the author

Carla Swafford loves romance novels, action/adventure movies, and men, and her books reflect that. She’s married to her high school sweetheart and lives in Alabama.

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads

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Review: Hot Like Fire, Cold As Ice: (BBW Polar Bear Shifter Paranormal Romance) by Lizzie Lynn Lee

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Hot Like Fire, Cold As Ice: (BBW Polar Bear Shifter Paranormal Romance) by Lizzie Lynn Lee

Genre: Paranormal Romance/ Erotica

Publication Date: January 15, 2016

Synopsis

imageA man like him should come with a five-alarm warning…

Vivacious and bubbly Melissa “Missy” Thornton is a career-driven lobbyist on top of her game. She is sent to convince eccentric billionaire Henry Parker to lease out his oil-rich land in Alaska. Before she could meet him, she gets into a car accident and stranded in a snowstorm. She would’ve frozen to death if a handsome stranger hadn’t helped her.

Henry “Hal” Parker likes solitude. As a polar bear shifter, he prefers to live in the wilderness rather than the glamourous life he left behind after his fiancée died. When he helps a trapped Missy from her car, he wonders if it’s a sign for him to finally move on. He can’t get his eyes off her and their attraction is instantaneous.

It doesn’t take long before Missy falls hard for him. Does it matter when Hal forgets to mention he’s a werebear? Uhm, maybe. Regardless, fur or no fur, a guy like him is perfect to curl up with in front of fireplace waiting for the ice to melt…

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3.5 stars DonnaThis was a fun little novella full of hot steamy romance. It would have benefited from more background on Hal and Missy plus a longer story to make their connection a little more believable though. Double it with another 80 pages would have fleshed it out nicely. I liked the humor Ms. Lee injected into the story as well as the backstory. All in all a nice quick story for when reading time is scarce.

Note: This EBOOK has 84 pages.

*Review copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review. 

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Buy Links

Kindle $2.51 | B&N $2.99 | Kobo $2.99 | iBooks $2.99

Note: The EBOOK has 84 pages so it’s a short read.

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About the Author

imageLizzie Lynn Lee was a guitarist, receptionist, executive assistant, tarot reader, boutique owner, and graphic artist before she discovered that writing is her dream job. The advantage is that she can do it in her pajamas and socks.

She’s an incurable chatterbox, heavy metal aficionado, bookworm, digital enthusiast, and a night owl since most of her stories were done in the wee hours of the morning because of her caffeine-induced insomnia.

These days she still plays her guitar whenever she gets bored staring at her computer’s screen or plotting the most elaborate scheme of world domination. Fortunately, she has a chronically short attention span.

Author Links: Website | Free Reads | Goodreads

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Spotlight, Review & Giveaway: A SEAL Forever (West Coast Navy SEALs, Book 3) by Anne Elizabeth

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A SEAL Forever (West Coast Navy SEALs, Book 3) by Anne Elizabeth

Publication Date: December 1, 2015

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Synopsis

imageEven a hero needs someone to believe in him…

Parkour instructor Maura Maxwell has always denied her attraction for her bachelor neighbor because she’s seen his revolving door of women and doesn’t want to become another notch on his belt. But the man who rescues her from a sudden storm isn’t the one she thinks she knows—he’s Master Chief Declan Swifton of SEAL Team Five, and he literally sweeps Maura off her feet.

Just as his teasing and tenderness start to work their way into Maura’s heart, Declan and his team are called in for a dangerous op in the Middle East. The man who returns is facing the toughest fight of his life, and he needs Maura by his side more than ever…

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3.5 stars DonnaI enjoyed the story but wish that the characters were given more depth so I could relate to them more. That being said, it was a nice sweet romance that gave you plenty to think about. The courage and strength they had pushed them to fulfil their lives and show that love is a precious thing.

*Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 

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ExcerptMaster Chief Declan Swifton of SEAL Team Five rolled over the side of the Rigid-hulled Inflatable Boat and slid soundlessly into the Pacific Ocean. The RIB took off without even a comment from the operator, leaving Declan to sink farther into the drink.
The temperature cooled as he swam away from the surface. Fish skirted the edges of his thighs, small shimmers of movement against his skin. He scissor-kicked his way forward. The ocean currents caught him, dragging him in the direction they wanted to go, toward shore. He lay with his arms at his sides, frog-kicking only. Above him, he could see the afternoon sunlight glistening and frothy foam chasing away the glassy surface. Down here things were different…calmer. Peaceful, in a way few souls would understand, and yet he knew that even he would have to surface soon.
His lungs would start to ache and burn, his gut would begin to feel as if it would cave in, and that would force him to either head topside or drink in the salt water. But there was still time. This was the water in front of Imperial Beach and the apartment he lived in. He knew it very well.
Scanning the ocean floor, he gauged it would be about thirty seconds until he reached one of the many rocky sandbars out here. He’d have to pull up before then, or the force of the current would smack him against the side.
As his body began to complain, he used both arms and legs to draw himself upward. Breaking the surface, he opened his mouth and drew in air like a thirsty man would gulp water.
The waves bounced him like a buoy. The tide was coming in and the wind was picking up momentum. Looking at the sky to the east, he could see that there would most likely be a storm today. Over his should, to the west, he spied a wave coming his way large enough to take him to shore. It would reach him in about thirty seconds.
Dec took a long, slow breath and appreciated the sun dropping into the horizon. The colors were extraordinary; orange and gold dappled the horizon as the blazing ball of light attempted to sink before the moon lifted higher in the sky.
His hands flexed, cupping the water. It had been a hot day, and the sun’s rays had heated the top of the ocean, making the surface feel like a warm bath, loosening his muscles. Three months ago, he’d been in waters so frigid, with actual ice caps—the memory still made him cold. But here, the Pacific Ocean off California’s Imperial Beach, was a slice of heaven.
Coming in from the east were some nasty-looking cumulonimbus clouds. Seeing the lightning arc way off toward the distant desert, he decided it was time to go in, and right on cue, here came a perfect wave.
Swimming at top speed, Declan pushed his way through another changing current, one that sought to drag him into faster-moving waters. He went over a higher sandbar, having no intention of going to Mexico today, and increased the reach of his stroke. With single-mindedness he worked his way into the more placid surf as he homed in on a large stretch of beach.
The SEAL felt a few sea lions swimming around him, and one nosed him in the gut and another in his back a few times, assessing whether or not he’d play. Not this time, my friends. He continued swimming without engaging. If he stopped to play, he’d be out there for hours.
Switching to the breaststroke, his arms protested. His platoon had switched their training this month to desert-warfare techniques, and he’d been sweating his balls off in the heat. He managed to learn a thing or two, even now, after all of his years in the Teams. But it felt good to be back in the ocean, his element. He’d live in the deep blue like a Jules Verne character if he could.

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A Navy SEALs Fun Fact from Anne Elizabeth

The mind follows the body and the body follows the mind—be thoughtful in how you feed it.

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Buy Links

Kindle $6.15 http://amzn.to/1X1cQsy
Amazon PBK $7.99 http://amzn.to/1NVbWNR
Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1O3JffD
Apple: http://apple.co/1M6H7Dj
Books a Million: http://bit.ly/1M6Hrlt
Indie Bound: http://bit.ly/1O3JEPe

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Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the author

imageNew York Times bestselling author Anne Elizabeth is an award-winning romance author and comic creator. With a BS in business and MS in communications from Boston University, she is a regular presenter at conventions as well as a member of The Author’s Guild and Romance Writers of America. Anne lives with her husband, a retired Navy SEAL, in the mountains above San Diego.

Social Networking Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Review: Give it Up by Lori Foster

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GIVE IT UP by Lori Foster

Publication Date: November 24, 2915

Synopsis

Cover Give it Up by Lori FosterHe Sees You When You’re Sleeping:
Booker Dean knows exactly what he wants for Christmas: his next-door neighbor, Frances Kennedy. And he’s got a gift planned for her that involves lots of delicious unwrapping.

Some Like It Hot:
Family practitioner Cary Rupert wants Nora Chilton so badly he can barely keep a hold of his stethoscope. Now he’s out to prove that when it comes to loving her forever, he’s the man for the job…

Playing Doctor:
Dr. Axle Dean is shocked and surprised when he spots sexy Libby Preston at a party. Not exchanging names they enjoy a sizzling kiss and a little more in the garden. When he finds out Libby’s secret…he hightails it out of there…only to be haunted by the memory of the time they shared. Imagine his surprise when he walks into his treatment room and finds her sitting there. Life has just gotten a little more complicated. Will these two find a happy ending?

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Excerpt

Read an Excerpt here: http://lorifoster.com/books/some.php#excerpt

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3.5 stars Donna

Three novellas about two brothers and a friend close enough to be a brother. They are fun light romances and I love how the three men banter and tease each other. Their relationship is just fun. I like the women they fall for also and the steamy romancing. My only complaint is that the relationships go from zero to marriage far too fast in the storyline. It just didn’t ring true enough for me to embrace on the first two stories but the last one seemed to flow in such a way that I could believe it. They were all around sweet stories.

*Review copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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Teaser Give it Up by Lori Foster

Buy Links

Kindle | Amazon PBK | B&N | iBooks | Kobo

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Synopsis

Lori Foster bio picSince first publishing in January 1996, Lori Foster has become a USA Today, Publisher’s Weekly and New York Times bestselling author of over 80 novellas and novels. She currently writes single titles for HQN.

Lori hosts a very special annual “Reader and Author Get Together,” aka RAGT, in West Chester, Ohio. Proceeds from the event have benefited many worthy causes, including the the Animal Adoption Foundation, The Conductive Learning Center for children with spina bifida and cerebral palsy, and The One Way Farm, Children’s Home. See more about the annual event here: http://readerauthorgettogether.com/

Each year Lori does a “benefit book,” with all author and agent proceeds going to a local charity. You can see all the benefit books here: http://lorifoster.com/benefit-books/

Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads

Review: Veiled Magic by Deborah Blake

Veiled Magic by Deborah Blake review

Veiled Magic by Deborah Blake

Publication Date: November 17, 2015

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis

imageA spellbinding new novel from the author of the Baba Yaga novels.

Since Witches came out of the broom-closet in the early 21st century, they have worked alongside humans as police officers, healers, stock traders, and more. But they aren’t the only paranormal entities in our world…

Police officer and Witch Donata Santori spends her days interrogating dead witnesses by summoning their spectral forms. Normally the job is little more than taking statements and filing reports. But when she’s called in on the case of a murdered art restorer, she finds herself suddenly in possession of a mystical portrait that both the human and paranormal communities would kill to get their hands on.

Unable to take on the forces hunting her alone, Donata seeks help from two unlikely and attractive allies: a reluctant shape-changer and a half-dragon art forger. But as the three of them hurry to uncover the truth about the powerful painting, Donata realizes that she’s caught in the middle of not one but two wars—one for possession of the painting’s secrets and one for possession of her heart…

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3.5 stars Donna

I enjoyed this fast paced quirky story of Donata the witch who finds herself in the middle of a mystery. I liked how the author pulled in the inquisition, giving it a twist that is quite fun and perfect fuel for more books. At times the story became a little convoluted but she managed to reign it in without losing momentum. My complaint would be that it was listed as a romance but it’s more of an ensemble piece with a little tension and a couple kisses. That being said, I had fun reading it.

*Review copy provided by Penguin in exchange for an honest review.

Buy Links Kindle http://amzn.to/1MvTMxC
B&N http://bit.ly/1OcETD6
Kobo http://bit.ly/1l16nSm
iBooks http://apple.co/1MSgEql

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About the Author

imageDeborah is the author of eight non-fiction books on modern witchcraft from Llewellyn and the Baba Yaga series from Berkley Romance, including Wickedly Magical (novella), Wickedly Dangerous, and Wickedly Wonderful.

Deborah lives in a 120 year old farmhouse in upstate NY with four cats, and runs an artists’ cooperative shop when she’s not writing. She believes in magic, laughter, chocolate, and wine. The order may change depending on the day.

AUTHOR LINKS: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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