Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: THE GODDESS GETS HER GUY by Ashlyn Chase

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THE GODDESS GETS HER GUY by Ashlyn Chase

Publication Date: November 26, 2019

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis

44B2D3C9-0E1E-4889-AECA-DE72BE27E0D0What happens when the goddess meets Mr. Right…but she absolutely can’t tell him who she really is?

After leaving his job as a cardiac surgeon, Dr. Aaron Samuels needs a new purpose in his life. Wanting to help his patients even if he can’t operate, he heads to the Puerto Rican rainforest to find a cure for heart disease. He never imagined he’d meet a beautiful, mysterious woman, especially not one talking to a frog in the middle of the jungle…

Gaia—a.k.a. Mother Nature—has had it with paranormals breaking her number one rule: Never reveal your supernatural powers to humans, not even your mate. Fed up, she transports to the rainforest, happy to converse with amphibians who don’t talk back. But Dr. Samuels is a much better conversationalist, and Gaia can’t wait to help him mend all those broken hearts he told her about.

When her attempts to help only complicate things between them, Gaia begins to wonder what would happen if she opened her heart and was honest with Aaron…and herself. Maybe her number one rule has been wrong all along…

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Excerpt

Karma lifted her sunglasses. “How goes the challenge of the century, Sister?” She stretched her long legs over a lounge chair next to her private pool.
“More like the challenge of the millennia.” Fate plopped herself on the lounge chair beside her.
“I referred someone to you.”
Fate’s eyes widened. “Pan? You sent Pan?”
“No. Why? Did someone else send him?”
“I doubt it. He said he heard rumors and wanted to volunteer.”
Karma laughed. “What did you say?”
Fate sighed. “A resounding ‘Thanks, but no thanks.’”
“Good. I’m not sure he has ever made up for that horrible practical joke he pulled in the sixteenth century.”
“I confronted him on that. He seemed to think the whole thing was wildly exaggerated, and it may have been. You know writers…if the truth isn’t quite dramatic enough, they’ll embellish it. But he did give me something to think about. Instead of trying to find someone with opposite faults, I should be looking for someone with common interests. Faults can be overlooked if you’re happy and living a better life because of your mate.”
“Exactly true. Is that what you were doing? Looking for someone who is basically a saint?”
“No. Why would you say that?”
“Hon, our sister is so riddled with faults, I can’t think of anyone with opposing assets.”
Fate let out a huge sigh.
“Here.” Karma produced a pitcher of ice water and two tall glasses.
“Is that all you got?”
“I’m in need of hydration. If you want something else, get it yourself.”
Fate snapped her fingers and held a sparkling orange mimosa. “Some hostess you are.”
“I’m not hosting a party, Sister, and if I were, you’d be crashing it. I was just lying here, enjoying the sun. Alone.”
Fate rose. “Well, pardon me. I didn’t realize I needed an engraved invitation to come to you for support.”
Karma waved away her remark. “Sit back down. Of course I’m here for you if you need a shoulder to cry on.”
Fate shook her head. “Unbelievable. I’m not in tears. I just thought two heads would be better than one.”
“So you’re rethinking my offer to help. Hey, if you want me to come up with a list of assholes to punish by setting them up with her, I can help you and myself both.”
Fate laughed. “Yeah, right. Like any of our gods wouldn’t see that coming.”
“Who said it has to be a god?”
“What are you suggesting? A human who knows nothing of the paranormal world? That’s exactly what she doesn’t want.”
Karma shrugged. “Well, it’s either that or a paranormal. Flip a coin.”
Fate was about to laugh until she realized Karma might be onto something. There were plenty of men, both human and paranormal, who could give Gaia a run for her money—so to speak. And some knew about gods and goddesses, even worshipped them.
“Most men would cower from her, but there are a few with the self-confidence to stand up to her and not crumble when faced with her abilities,” Karma was saying.
“Perhaps…” Fate tapped her lip as she mentally ran through a list of men she’d destined for greatness but whom she hadn’t found mates for. There weren’t many. “Is there any world leader without a mate?” Fate asked.
“None who actually deserve one at the moment.”
“How about someone smart and selfless? Do you know of any heroes with very high IQs?”
“Aren’t those two things antithetical? How smart is it to run into a burning building or sacrifice yourself in another way?” Karma asked. “We’d be back to square one.”
Fate snorted. “Well, there goes the only suggestion the modern muses came up with.”
Karma gave a slight shrug. “Gaia isn’t all bad, you know. In fact, deep down, she has some very positive traits.”
Fate snickered. “Must be deeper than I’ve ever looked.”
* * * *
Aaron wandered aimlessly around his large living room. He had immediately retired from the Boston hospital where he’d worked for thirty years as a cardiac surgeon. Kind of necessary since he’d been diagnosed with essential tremors. At last, he dropped into his favorite chair, and as soon as he did, his black-and-white cat jumped onto his lap.
“Hi, Cat. I’m sorry we never gave you a more imaginative name, but you came when Ruthie called, so in a way, it’s your fault.” He scratched behind the cat’s furry ear, and the feline began to purr. On the housekeeper’s day off like this, he had no one to talk to but his cat—not that he talked to Mrs. Rivera very much. He had to keep his family’s magical witch power a secret, and it was easier to do if he didn’t communicate much with people who had no knowledge of magic and the paranormal.
“Can I confide in you, Cat? Of course I can. You won’t tell anyone, will you, boy?” He sighed deeply. “My hand trembled during a transplant. I can’t afford to nick an artery if even one finger trembles.”
He ran his currently steady hand over the cat’s soft back. “I have a beautiful million-dollar home in Brookline, but what’s a home without a family in it? No offense. You’re part of the family, but you don’t take up much room. What are we doing here?”
He answered, “I’m talking to myself. That’s what I’m doing.”
He let out a huge groan. Despite feeling odd about it, he continued his musing aloud. “My wife died two decades ago. You weren’t around then. I’ve raised my daughters, and they’re both living their own lives in their own homes, starting families. My nest is empty. Again, no offense. We’ll call it empty-ish.
“I miss my daughters, who I could talk to frankly about our Wiccan roots. I have one useless power. The power of invisibility.” He chuckled bitterly. “I might as well be invisible right now. Couldn’t have gotten a useful power, like my girls’ power to save one life a day with supernatural intervention.”
Cheek resting against his fist, he thought about how pathetic he seemed. He couldn’t stand being this way. He hadn’t told anyone about his diagnosis. “Maybe it’s a good thing they’re not here. The girls would worry, and I don’t want to burden them.

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Buy Links

KindlePaperback

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Giveaway

3 Copies of THE GODDESS GETS HER GUY by Ashlyn Chase

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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About the Author

An award-winning author, ASHLYN CHASE specializes in characters who reinvent themselves, having reinvented herself numerous times. She has worked as a psychiatric nurse, and for the Red Cross, and has a degree in behavioral sciences. She lives with her true-life hero husband in beautiful New Hampshire.

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: THE COST OF HONOR by Diana Muñoz Stewart

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THE COST OF HONOR (Black Ops Confidential Series, Book 3) by Diana Muñoz Stewart

Publication Date: November 26, 2019

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Synopsis

7C76234A-2A67-495B-A06D-3DA3DB6B1B7FShe saved him. But to save her, he’ll have to walk away…

The only male to be adopted into the notorious Parish family, Tony Parish always did right by his vigilante sisters. But when an attempt to protect one of them went horribly wrong, he had to fake his own death to escape his fanatical family. As “Lazarus,” he disappeared to Dominica—only to awaken face to face with the woman of his dreams…

When Honor Silva plunged into stormy waters to rescue a drowning kiteboarder, she had no idea resuscitating the sexy stranger would bring life-changing love—and life-threatening danger—crashing into her world.

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Donna 4 stars

I was glad that I liked Honor and Tony right away, and that they just went with their desires instead of fighting it. Yes, he had his secrets, but that didn’t stop either of them. This romantic suspense had a lot going on – constant danger, mysterious murders, and sexy romance. I enjoyed almost all of it. My main problem that was not resolved for me, was the reason for his faked death. If he was that close to his family, why was there the need for his action….and why oh why was there a need for their actions. It made no sense to me and frankly, it ticked me off. It shows how much I liked the rest of the story with all it’s twists and turns, to rate it a 4, because one of my favorite things in books is a group dynamic. A closeness with those around them. I did not get that from this book. I hope there is a book 4 in this series, as I liked the writing style and all other parts of this story.

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

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Excerpt

As Honor opened the door to lead Laz into her chocolate store, she cursed her cowardice. Why hadn’t she kissed him? She could see he’d wanted her to. Could feel the scorching heat between them. And yet as he’d looked down at her, too handsome to be real, she’d froze.
Inside the store, the cool air smelled of sugar and chocolate and spices. And well it should with cases of chocolate, shelves of wrapped chocolate, fudge and elaborate displays of green and gold boxed chocolates.
As Laz looked around at the store, she closed her eyes, took a deep breath, and let it out with a satisfied sigh.
When she opened her eyes, she found him staring at her mouth. Heat rushed through her. She should’ve kissed him. Should’ve kissed him. “You like?”
He grinned.
“I mean the store.” What was wrong with her? “Do you like the store?”
His smile widened. “It’s a great store. Best I’ve ever seen.”
It was. It was, in fact, a perfect candy store. Her chocolatier’s dream. She was glad he enjoyed it, but one thing made her nervous. Well, many things about him made her nervous, but right now this. Getting him to taste something.
Time to bite the bullet. She pointed at the rows of dishes in the glass case, white china, filled with different types of chocolate and truffles. “What’s your favorite?”
He put down a chocolate bar whose wrapper he’d been reading. “My favorite? Would it disappoint you if I said I’m not a huge chocolate fan?”
Would it disappoint her? Was he kidding? “Are you trying to cause me physical pain?”
He laughed. “No. I love chocolate.” He moved closer to her, front to front. “Can’t get enough. You have anything with some bite?”
Biting. Yes. What? She was losing her mind. Oh, he was so hot. But this was her chance. Her chance to make up for her missed opportunity. Bold, Honor. Be bold.
She leaned past him, into him. Her entire front caught fire. She gathered up a jar of chocolate  sticks, took one out. Putting the jar back, she brushed his bicep. Hopefully he didn’t notice her shaking hands.
She held up the chocolate stick. “I invented this.”
“A small, chocolate straw?”
She pulled off the plastic wrapper. “It’s a kissing stick. The middle is filled with a warm surprise, but as you can see, it’s a little large for one mouth to suck on.”
He grinned at her. “I think I might need a demonstration.”
She grinned back. Oh good. That was what she’d wanted. “The things I do for my craft.”
She put the chocolate straw in her mouth, up to the center, tilted up her chin. He dipped down and captured the other end of the stick.
Heat. Heat like she never felt before shot through her body. She clutched at him, had no choice, no way not to. Her body took over, closed down her mind. Closer. More. Closer. Now.
The chocolate reacted instantly, melting against their lips. Her hot and needy tongue licked the chocolate from his full lips.
The cayenne warmed her already tingling mouth, and she found her boldness in her desire. She probed the kiss, begged him to let her inside.
He did. Eagerly.
She moaned and moved into him. He put his arms around her. He’d given her the first move, but he was taking control now, demonstrating his own need.
His body was hard against her, mouth pulling at her, tasting her. The chocolate melted, leaving the cayenne slick between them.
The jingle of the bells over the door brought her to her senses. What was she doing? In the middle of her store?
She broke off the kiss, licked her lips, stepped back from him. They stared at each other. Their breathing heavy and much too loud. The heat in their mouths was nothing compared to the heat building between them. She couldn’t have mumbled a single word.
What was this?
What was happening to her?
She’d never felt this way about a man. She’d thought it was a myth, this type of attraction—the kind that drove away doubt and common sense. She needed to take him to her room and rip off his clothes.
But was this unique for him too? Or did he act this way or feel this way with all women? A bolt of pain, real pain, pierced her chest. She had to be cautious. This was her first experience with these feelings, this desire, but that didn’t mean it was his. Maybe he did this to all women.
He licked his lips. “Sweet.” His voice was thick with need.
Though she wanted to grab another stick, take another chance with feeling his firm and eager body against hers, she found her voice and a better idea. “My grandfather usually finishes the tour around five, so we have some time. Would you like me to show you the rooms?”
His eyebrows jumped. “That sounds fantastic. Let’s start with yours.”
This man had just read her mind. Not that you needed to be a mind reader. She was sending up red signal flares that burst into the air between them spelling out, I’m going to take you hard. You’re mine.

Excerpted from The Cost of Honor by Diana Muñoz Stewart. © 2019 by Diana Muñoz Stewart. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

Black Ops Confidential Series:
I Am Justice (Book 1)
The Price of Grace (Book 2)
The Cost of Honor (Book 3)

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Giveaway

3 Sets of I Am Justice and The Price of Grace

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

Having earned her MFA in Creative Writing, DIANA MUÑOZ STEWART went on to write several novels that garnered awards and recognition in the paranormal, science fiction, and contemporary romance genres. A believer in the power of words to heal and connect, she blogs and provides web-content on health, writing, and social issues.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

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Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: WISH UPON A COWBOY by Jennie Marts

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WISH UPON A COWBOY (Cowboys of Creedence Series, Book 4) by Jennie Marts

Publication Date: November 26, 2019

Genre: Contemporary Western Romance

Synopsis

3EF56CD5-1B90-41A9-9480-EBFCC05C0855Hot on the ice and tall in the saddle…

Rancher and hockey coach Logan Rivers’ attempts to hire a housekeeper are hindered by women more interested in marriage than meal-planning. So when snarky Harper Evans arrives with zero romantic interest in him, he couldn’t be happier. But as he gets to know her, he finds himself hungering for more than her cooking.

Down-on-her-luck single mom Harper Evans came to Colorado with one goal: to find her son and bring him home. Temporary work for a local rancher seems perfect, but to keep the job she has to deny her feelings for the hot cowboy who’s heating up her kitchen.

Logan’s secret learning disability has caused a financial mistake that could cost him everything. With the holidays approaching and a storm closing in, he and Harper have to save his ranch and fight for her son. But can Harper trust the cowboy who is offering her both a home—and his heart?

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Excerpt

Logan walked back to stand next to her, their shoulders not quite touching as they looked at the tree together.
“I love the star on top,” she told him. “Some people like to put an angel on the tree, but I’ve always preferred the star.”
“Yeah? Why’s that?”
“I don’t know. I guess I think of the star as a promise of something amazing ahead. Like the star the wise men follow in the Christmas story. They don’t question it, they don’t second-guess it, they just believe. And it led them to everything they would ever need. They didn’t have to earn it or even deserve it. They just had to follow the star, and the promise would be fulfilled.” The lights on the tree blurred and transformed to tiny twinkling stars as she blinked back the tears filling her eyes.
“Sorry. I love the Christmas star the most, but I think stars in general are amazing. They’re so far away, and we shouldn’t even be able to see them, but we can. I think each one is like a little miracle, and maybe they shine so brightly because they hold so many of our wishes.”
She shook her head. “Gosh, that sounded so dorky. I sometimes think sappy stuff like this, but I don’t often say it out loud. I didn’t mean to get all gushy.”
“It’s not gushy at all.” Logan gazed up at the star. “We always put the star on last, but I don’t know that I’ve ever really thought about what it represents. But I like what you said, that the star is a promise of something amazing ahead.”
They were standing shoulder to shoulder and not looking at each other, but she still felt as though they were seeing each other. As though here in the glow of a hundred tiny, sparkling lights, they were each giving the other a small piece of themselves, holding it out to see if the other would take it and cherish it, or refuse it with scorn.
“I guess I’ve always thought stars represented whatever it was that you wanted,” he said. “Like your deepest desire. You know, you reach for the stars like you’re going for something you really want.” The back of his hand grazed hers, and his pinkie finger twined around hers. “We’ve always used the stars to guide us. The night sky was the original GPS. If you’re ever lost or can’t find your way, you can use the stars to lead you home.”
His words were doing nothing to quell the emotion building in her throat. She’d always loved the Christmas star, loved what it represented, but she didn’t think she’d ever said her feelings about it out loud. Or maybe she had.
Her son loved everything to do with space and the stars. She’d hoped to get him a telescope for Christmas this year. He loved to learn about the stars and the planets. One morning at breakfast, he’d told her he wanted to be an astronaut, to fly into space and be among the stars.
Harper remembered smiling and asking him why—and having her heart shatter into a million pieces when he said it was so he could be with his dad.
Thinking about Michael and Floyd and all she’d lost had pain piercing her heart. She missed them both so much. So much that she couldn’t see the right path to take or the correct choices she was supposed to make. She needed a star right now—needed something to guide her, to lead her to her deepest desire. She felt more lost than she’d ever been.
She stared into the lights of the tree and prayed for guidance and wisdom and for something to give her hope to hold on to. The ache in her chest felt as if it might turn her inside out and swallow her whole.
She started to tighten her hand into a fist and realized her fingers were now completely entwined with Logan’s. A surge of warmth had flowed through her a few seconds ago when his pinkie had gently looped around hers, but when had she taken his hand? And why was she squeezing it now as if he were the lifeline she’d been looking to cling to?
A sob threatened her throat, and she let go of his hand. She didn’t want to cling to anyone. She’d been down that road before, hanging on to other people, holding to the idea that they would save her. But there was no one to save her now. Not Michael, not her grandmother, and not the tall cowboy standing next to her.
The only one who could save her, and her boy, was her. The only one she could truly count on to come through for her was herself.

Excerpted from Wish Upon a Cowboy by Jennie Marts. © 2019 by Jennie Marts. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

Amazon Series Link

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Giveaway

3 Sets of Cowboys of Creedence Books 1-3

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

Jennie Marts is the USA TODAY Best-selling author of award-winning books filled with love, laughter, and always a happily ever after. Readers call her books “laugh out loud” funny and the “perfect mix of romance, humor, and steam.” Fic Central claimed one of her books was “the most fun I’ve had reading in years.”

She is living her own happily ever after in the mountains of Colorado with her husband, two dogs, and a parakeet that loves to tweet to the oldies. She’s addicted to Diet Coke, adores Cheetos, and believes you can’t have too many books, shoes, or friends.

Her books include the contemporary western romance Hearts of Montana series, the romantic comedy/ cozy mysteries of The Page Turners series, the hunky hockey-playing men in the Bannister family in the Bannister Brothers Books, and the small-town romantic comedies in the Lovestruck series of Cotton Creek Romances.

Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: THE OUTLAW’S HEART by Amy Sandas

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THE OUTLAW’S HEART (Runaway Brides Book 3) by Amy Sandas

Publication Date: October 29, 2019

Genre: Historical Romance

Synopsis

6B06EF2E-E22C-48F8-9088-284FC26A68F1Three runaway brides
Determined to escape their fates
Flee West to find freedom that can only be had
in a cowboy’s arms…

Desperate to escape an unhappy marriage, Boston socialite Evelyn Perkins flees west in hopes of losing herself to the dusty frontier. But when her train is boarded by outlaws, Evelyn is taken for ransom. Despite her terror, Evelyn fears being returned to her husband more. Refusing to cooperate, she becomes the responsibility of a man whose steady gaze threatens to pierce her brave façade and reach the wounded heart within.

Gabriel Sloan has his orders, but the haunting shadows in the pretty young woman’s eyes spark an intense protective instinct he can’t deny. Every look, every touch brings them closer together. He would do anything to protect her, but dangerous men are on their trail, and soon the two must face Evelyn’s darkest nightmare— or risk losing the unexpected joy they’ve found forever…

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Excerpt

“ The tall, muscled man who’d stared at her across the fire was even more intimidating up close. He had expansive shoulders, thick arms barely contained in his pale-colored cotton shirt, and powerful legs encased in worn denim. In a graceful economy of muscle and movement, he folded his large body into a crouch, bringing his face even with hers.
And what a face it was. Strong and beautiful in a way she’d never seen before. He had a broad forehead and a long, straight nose. His jaw was sharply angled, as were his cheekbones, but his mouth was wide and his lips were soft and full.
But unsmiling.
Startled by his unexpected proximity, Evelyn flinched when he lifted his hand, realizing belatedly that he held a canteen and was offering it to her.
He did not react to her obvious fear. Instead, he remained still—his expression flat as his eyes held hers. “It’s water,” he said.
His voice matched the rest of him—richly complex and powerful. Something strange rolled through her at the sound. Like anticipation of a storm when you hear the rumble of distant thunder, but warmer.
Her lashes flickered as she glanced down at the canteen. She was unbelievably thirsty, but how could she trust anything offered by men who held her captive?
“If you want to survive, you’ll drink the water and eat the food,” he said quietly. The words were just between them. Still she did not reach for the canteen. “You want to live?” he asked, raising a brow.
Evelyn lifted her chin, regaining eye contact with the man, despite her uncertainty and fear. “Yes, I want to live,” she replied, surprising herself by the conviction in her words.
With a single, short nod, he extended the canteen a bit more. “Then drink.”
She lifted her hands to take the water, but because of the binding rope and her frozen fingers, she couldn’t grasp it.
Realizing her predicament, he gave a quiet grunt, then set the canteen on the ground and reached for her wrists. His large, warm hands surrounded her curled fists. He held them in silence for a moment—as if his only intention was to share his heat and offer comfort.
Though Evelyn felt the icy stiffness in her fingers dissipating, she resisted the instinctive desire to accept anything more. But she didn’t pull away.
And she wasn’t sure why.
“Don’t be scared,” he stated, still in a private tone. “You won’t be hurt.”
She searched his gaze in the darkness. She wanted to believe him, but she knew far too well how easily a man could hide wicked intent. “I am not so naive,” she replied, her voice barely more than a murmur of sound.
He did nothing to indicate he heard her reply as he released his hold on her hands and deftly loosened the ropes. He did not remove them altogether, but he allowed for a bit of freedom to use her hands more effectively. Then he picked up the canteen and offered it once again.
Evelyn managed to bring it to her lips this time and took a few long drinks. The water soothed her throat, but it also made her very aware of her empty stomach. Lowering the canteen, she offered it back to the man who remained patiently beside her. Watching her in silence.
His nearness was discomfiting. As were his size and his quiet manner.
She had no idea what to make of him. There was strength in him, something his muscled form attested to without effort, but he displayed not the slightest hint of temper or violence.
Of course, Matthew hadn’t either…until something set him off.
The outlaw took the canteen, never shifting his gaze from hers. Not even when the voices around the fire rose higher in discord.
“Shit,” the young one named Ramsey exclaimed, frustration clear in his tone. “We can still ransom the woman. I mean, look at her.”
Evelyn stiffened under the sudden flood of attention. The man crouched before her was still watching her carefully, and she feared she might have revealed her trepidation when his brows lowered over his gaze.
Did she really believe she was better off with these outlaws than in her husband’s hands?
Yes. Yes, she did. But that didn’t mean she was not in danger.
He stared at her for a moment longer before he rose to his feet and walked away without a word, leaving the canteen on the ground beside her. She couldn’t keep her gaze from following his powerful form as he melted into the darkness beyond the fire while the others continued discussing her fate.
She expected to release a breath of relief at being left alone again, but it didn’t come.
“With her fancy clothes and fine airs, there’s gotta be someone somewhere who’ll be willing to pay good money to get her back.”
Evelyn listened to the exchange with increasing tension. These men were right about one thing. Her husband would no doubt be willing to pay a small fortune to get her back. But there was nothing in the world that would convince her to tell them that.

Excerpted from The Outlaw’s Heart by Amy Sandas. © 2019 by Amy Sandas. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.

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F822856F-DC6B-4AC2-9DD6-1E053A412353

Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

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Runaway Brides Series:
The Gunslinger’s Vow (Book 1)
The Cowboy’s Honor (Book 2)
The Outlaw’s Heart (Book 3)

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Giveaway

5 Copies of The Cowboy’s Honor

a Rafflecopter giveaway

~*~*~*~

About the Author

Amy Sandas’ love of romance began one summer when she stumbled across one of her mother’s Barbara Cartland books. Her affinity for writing began with sappy pre-teen poems and led to a Bachelor’s degree with an emphasis on Creative Writing from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. She lives with her husband and children in Wisconsin.

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: COWBOY FIREFIGHTER CHRISTMAS KISS by Kim Redford

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COWBOY FIREFIGHTER CHRISTMAS KISS (Smokin’ Hot Cowboys, Book 5) by Kim Redford

Publication Date: October 29, 2019

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Synopsis

A12FC05E-9AA5-4537-ABED-00599D763CBBThe firefighting cowboys of Wildcat Bluffs take Christmas VERY seriously…

When Ivy Bryant arrives in town to run the historic honkytonk, she finds herself immersed in traditions that can’t be bucked. Luckily, cowboy firefighter Slade Steele has an idea to increase both the honkytonk’s income, and his own. It’s an offer Ivy couldn’t refuse, even if the passion between them wasn’t already reaching the boiling point.

Ivy and Slade’s love story is legendary—when you add in arsonist cattle rustlers, a runaway Angus bull, and a chili recipe that includes liquor AND chocolate, Wildcat Bluffs will be celebrating a cowboy Christmas unlike any other.

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Excerpt

As Ivy Bryant stood on her tiptoes with arms raised to toss decorative tinsel over deer antlers on the wall above her head, she heard the side door that led to the Wildcat Hall’s beer garden open and boots hit the floor with a determined stride.
“We’re closed!” she hollered, not bothering to look over her shoulder. “Come back next week.”
“You look like you could use a little help,” a man said.
She froze with her hands in the air as she felt the deep male voice with that melodic, slow cadence of a born-and-bred Texan strike her body and go deep, as if she’d been pierced by a flaming arrow. Talk about red-hot. She tried to shrug off the heat, but the chair shifted under her, making her sway.
“Easy does it,” he said. “Chairs have a way of pretending they’re bulls sometimes.”
“Bulls?” She didn’t know whether to laugh at the joke or appreciate he’d tried to make her feel better about almost toppling to the floor. Still and all, if she’d known she was going to have company, she’d have put on something besides formfitting yoga pants and top in hot pink with black trim. He was getting an eyeful.
“In my case, I always tried to pretend bulls were chairs.”
“How’d that work out?” She eyed the antlers, mind half on her next throw and half on the amusing man behind her.
“About like you can imagine.” He sighed, as if life had been unfair. “I finally had to give up bulls for chairs.”
“I bet the bulls were grateful.” She definitely wanted to see the face that went with the voice, but she wanted to finish her task more.
“Yeah…but I’ve broken a few chairs.”
“Maybe even one of the chairs here in the honkytonk.”
“Might be. Looks like your chair is keeping an uneasy peace with the floor
“That’s one way of putting it.” She rose to her tiptoes again, trying one last time to get the tinsel to disobey the laws of gravity.
“Let me help.” He spanned her waist with large hands and lifted her so she could easily reach the antlers.
She caught her breath in surprise at his strength—and his boldness. But she wasn’t looking a gift horse in the mouth. She quickly twined the antlers with red tinsel until they looked festive for the holidays.
“Pretty,” he said.
She shivered in response. What had gotten into her? She should be struggling to get away. Instead, he was revving her up with his hot hands.
“Got any more tinsel to put up?” he asked in a deep voice gone husky. “I could hold you all day and into next week.”
“I suggest you put me down before you get into trouble.”
“If you’re the one handing out trouble, I’d wait in line to get it.”
She couldn’t help but chuckle because he was laying it on thick in that teasing way Texas men would do to get them out of problems with women. “Better put me down before your arms give out.”
“Not a chance. You’re light as a feather.”
She laughed harder. “Guess some women would fall for that one. What are you selling?”
“As a matter of fact, I’m here to help you, but you might consider it selling to you, too.” He gently set her down so her feet were steady on the floor, and then he stepped back.
She turned to face him—and felt her breath catch in her throat at the tall hunk of a cowboy. He wore pressed Wranglers that accentuated his long legs and narrow hips, with a wide leather belt sporting a huge rodeo belt buckle. His blue-and-white-striped, pearl-snap shirt tucked neatly into the waistband of his jeans emphasized the width of his shoulders and breadth of his chest. Blond haired. Blue eyed. Square jawed. Full lipped. He looked as if he’d been made to dazzle—and she was suddenly and breathtakingly susceptible to every single one of his charms.
“Whatever you’re selling, I think I’m buying.” She spoke the words with a teasing lilt in her voice and a mischievous smile on her face. Still, she meant it. And he probably knew it because he was definitely heartbreaker material. How many women had already fallen to his charms and been left in the dust? She didn’t intend to be a notch on his belt, but if she’d known leaving the city for the country paid off so well in eye candy, she might’ve followed her sister sooner.
He chuckled at her words and held out his hand with a thick, muscular wrist that came from controlling thousand-pound-plus animals. “Slade Steele. If you haven’t heard of me, maybe you’re aware of the Chuckwagon Café and Steele Trap Ranch. Family businesses. I’m not just any guy off the street.”
“You’re definitely not just any guy.” She slipped her hand into his big one and felt him gently enclose her fingers. “Smart guy to throw a few compliments my way. Guess you’re more than a pretty face.” She tried to keep the teasing going, so their interaction stayed on a light note, but he was still holding her hand and she wasn’t pulling away and his eyes were heating up to a blazing blue fire.
“Nothing but the truth.”
“My sister Fern is the star.” She tried to tug her hand away, but he held on another long moment, nodding as if deciding something or conveying something or accepting something before finally letting go.
He grinned with a gleam in his eyes, revealing teeth white against the tan of his skin. “Yeah, she is that…but you make the earth move.”
“Oh my.” She returned his grin while fanning her face with one hand in that old Southern way, as if he was too hot to handle. “You really do want to sell me something, don’t you?”
“How am I doing?”
“Not bad.”

Excerpted from Cowboy Firefighter Christmas Kiss by Kim Redford. © 2019 by Kim Redford. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Buy Links

Kindle | Amazon Paperback

Amazon Series Link

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Giveaway

5 Copies of Hot for a Cowboy

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

KIM REDFORD is an acclaimed author of Western romance. She grew up in Texas with cowboys, cowgirls, horses, cattle, and rodeos. She divides her time between homes in Texas and Oklahoma, where she’s a rescue cat wrangler and horseback rider—when she takes a break from her keyboard. Visit her at kimredford.com.

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Review, Guest Post & Giveaway: A LIE FOR A LIE by Helena Hunting

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A LIE FOR A LIE (All In Series Book 1) by Helena Hunting

Publication Date: October 15, 2019

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Author Guest Post

Guest Post: Lainey vs. Puck Bunnies in A Lie for a Lie

A Lie for a Lie is a heartwarming, sexy, emotional romantic comedy. It’s a second chance romance, filled with secrets and there are definitely some exciting, fun twists. It’s also a story of empowerment, self-discovery, and independence.

Rook Bowman, aka RJ or Rookie as he has been known as previously, has recently taken on the role as captain of Chicago’s NHL team, and with that role comes big responsibility and more fame than he sometimes knows how to handle. As with any professional sport, the NHL lifestyle can often be full of excess and decadence; money, fame and an endless stream of women who will do just about anything to get into bed with them, and it’s not always easy to avoid that kind of temptation.

When we meet Rook in A Lie for a Lie we learn that he has a less than shiny past when it comes to the excess and the puck bunnies (hockey groupies). NHL players are often drafted quite young—just watch a game and you’ll notice that the rookies can often barely grown peach fuzz, let alone a full beard. They’re still teenagers when they start their careers, and Rook was no different. Having grown up on an alpaca farm in rural New York, his focus was mainly hockey and the family farm, but once he hit the pros he found himself surrounded by women who literally threw themselves at him. And being young, attractive and full of testosterone, he fell headfirst down that rabbit hole. At least until the drama found him in the form of a fake pregnancy and a social media firestorm. Because of that, and the impact it had on his relationship with his family, Rook swears off the bunnies and refocuses on his career, rather than extracurricular activities.

He meets Lainey on the way to Alaska, where he’s gone every summer since he was a teenager with his dad and his brother. He lost his father a few years earlier, but kept the tradition with his brother because he craves the escape from the demands of his life as an NHL superstar. Lainey encapsulates everything he misses about being a “normal guy.” She doesn’t recognize him or seem to even know anything about hockey, and that makes her even more alluring. For once, he can just be himself. He doesn’t have to worry about ulterior motives or being used. Lainey is refreshingly innocent, incredibly smart, genuine and overwhelmingly sweet and Rook finds himself enamored with her sense of adventure. As they get to know each other, Rook learns about her traumatic past and realizes that despite the challenges she’s faced, Lainey possesses a quiet strength and resilience. Add some insane chemistry and you’ve got a recipe for love. Unfortunately for Rook, he built their entire fragile relationship on lie he can’t take back.

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Synopsis

C040BC59-AE0A-4A01-ADB7-798DDC621AB2Sometimes I need an escape from the demands, the puck bunnies, and the notoriety that come with being an NHL team captain. I just want to be a normal guy for a few weeks. So when I leave Chicago for some peace and quiet, the last thing I expect is for a gorgeous woman to literally fall into my lap on a flight to Alaska. Even better, she has absolutely no idea who I am.

Lainey is the perfect escape from my life. My plan for seclusion becomes a month long sex fest punctuated with domestic bliss. But it ends just as abruptly as it began. When I’m called away on a family emergency, I realize too late that I have no way to contact Lainey.

A year later, a chance encounter throws Lainey and me together again. But I still have a lie hanging over my head, and Lainey’s keeping secrets of her own. With more than lust at stake, the truth may be our game changer.

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Donna 4 stars

I enjoyed this sweet romance about a summer fling, little white lies, and reuniting. Although I couldn’t relate to Lainey and her insecurities, I totally understood his attraction to her. Nicely done, Ms. Hunting. It is written in first person, each given their own voice that deftly conveyed their feelings without bogging down the story. Yes, RJ is a hockey player, but the story did not revolve around that. So those that are not fans of sports novels will also love it.

RJ was lovable while keeping his manliness. I’m glad he came across as determined instead of weak and desperate. So many things made me smile and swoon a little. They made a great couple in and out of the bed. There were steamy parts, but it was more about instant attraction, overcoming obstacles and how love can blend two opposite lifestyles.

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

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Excerpt

When Lainey excuses herself to the bathroom, I rush upstairs and throw on a T-shirt. I know she said whatever makes me comfortable, but sitting around shirtless is such a douche move.

I make it back to the kitchen and pour her a fresh drink before she returns from the bathroom.

“How can I help with dinner?” Lainey drapes her sweater over the back of a chair.

And my mouth goes dry. Like I ate an entire sleeve of saltines and chased it with a tablespoon of salt. So far I’ve only seen Lainey in a giant parka or an oversize sweater. Under all that bulky fabric is one hell of a body. She’s wearing a simple white waffle shirt that conforms to her curves. A pair of dark-wash skinny jeans encase her toned legs.

I’m used to bunnies throwing themselves at me, often in questionable states of undress. I stopped getting excited about miniskirts and revealing tops a long time ago. There’s something infinitely sexier about a woman who can show off her body without actually showing it off at all.

Lainey tips her head to the side. Her teeth press into her full bottom lip. I want to do that. Suck that pouty, full lip between my teeth and bite it. I want to do a lot of other, far more explicit things than that, but a kiss seems like a good place to start.

“RJ? Is everything okay?” Her eyes dip down to my chest. I’m wearing a shirt from one of my endorsement campaigns. It afforded me the extensive renovations on this cabin a few years ago.

“Huh?” I give my head a shake. “Oh. Yeah. Everything’s good. Sorry, zoned out there for a second.”

She smiles and pushes up on her toes, her eyes twinkling—like, they legit light up, and her excitement makes her entire body vibrate. It also makes her boobs jiggle. I try to keep my eyes glued to her face. It’s not easy, though.

“I do that all the time! Sometimes my brain is busy with so many thoughts I miss entire conversations. Does that happen to you too?”

I grin. I love that she seems to say whatever is on her mind. “All the time.”

“It’s actually a helpful skill when you’re being lectured, because I can sort through stuff in my head, but it’s not so great when your supervising professor is telling you what’s wrong with your thesis.” She pulls her hair over her shoulder and finger combs it.

“I take it that’s happened to you.”

“It did. Thankfully he also emailed all his criticisms, so missing out on it the first time wasn’t that big of a deal.” She divides her hair into three sections and deftly braids it without looking at what she’s doing even once. It’s pretty damn impressive. I almost want to pull it apart so I can watch her do it all over again. “Anyway, enough about that. Let’s get started on dinner!” She nudges me out of the way so she can wash her hands. She dries them on her jeans and moves over to the fridge, opening it to check out the contents.

I kind of like that she makes herself at home. I’m used to women who expect to be catered to. It’s refreshing to meet someone who doesn’t want me to pander to her.

I start pulling things out of the fridge as she starts naming items she’ll need and set them on the counter. I manage to locate most of what she asks for.

“What about garlic? Do you have any of that?” She leans over, peering into the fridge beside me. Her braid slips over her shoulder, skimming my arm.

“Uh, maybe we could forgo the garlic?”

“Are you allergic? My oldest brother gets bloated when he eats it. It took us forever to figure out what was causing it. Sometimes I’ll still put some in when he’s coming for dinner, because it’s funny to see him look like he’s expecting.” She tips her head to the side. “Or you just don’t like garlic?”

“I like it sometimes, but it depends.”

Her brows pinch together. “On what?”

“Who I’m eating with. I mean, if I’m going out with buddies, you bet I’m gonna order the honey garlic wings, or the cheesy garlic bread, or the pasta Alfredo. But if I’m eating dinner with a pretty girl, I’m gonna pass on the garlic.”

“Oh.” She twists the end of her braid around her finger.

I hope I’m not reading things wrong and making her uncomfortable.

“Does that mean you think I’m pretty?”

That she sounds genuinely curious as to my answer is unexpected. “You see yourself in the mirror every day—what do you think?”

She averts her gaze, still playing with the end of her braid. “My eyes are too big, so I always look like I’m surprised. My nose is small, and my lips are too full, so my mouth doesn’t really fit the rest of my face.”

“Wow. I think you need a new mirror, because all I see is a whole lot of gorgeous.”

She snorts a laugh and waves me off. “Once, I took a portrait class, and we learned all about proportion and symmetry of the face. Those are just my flaws based on what I was taught.”

“Well, I’m a big fan of all your flaws, and I think they make you more beautiful, not less.”

“Thanks. I think you’re beautiful too.” She cringes. “I mean handsome. You’re very nice to look at, with or without a shirt on. When I fell in your lap on the airplane, I remember thinking, At least I fell on someone nice looking.”

“Is that so?”

“Mm-hmm.” She opens a drawer, maybe to avoid looking at me. “And as much as I was mortified when you sat beside me on the Cessna, I couldn’t complain about the view, inside or outside of the plane. That you turned out to be really nice, and just so helpful, was a great bonus.” She hands me a roll of foil. “Why don’t you wrap the potatoes? They take the longest, so we should get started on those first.”

I put the potatoes on the barbecue and let Lainey order me around. She definitely knows her way around a kitchen. When I was growing up, my mom did most of the cooking, but my dad could make a mean Saturday-morning brunch. He also made great bread, which I miss a lot.

An hour later we’re seated at the table, plates full of steak, twice-baked potatoes, and crispy brussels sprouts cooked in bacon fat. I open a bottle of red wine and offer Lainey a glass.

“Just a little bit? I’m not sure I like red wine.”

“Maybe you just haven’t had the right red wine.” I pour a little into her glass.

She picks it up and gives it a swirl, then sniffs it. “I’ve seen people do this in the movies, but I don’t really know what the point is,” she admits, then tips the glass back and takes a tentative sip. Her expression turns thoughtful; then she takes another, slightly more robust sip. “This is actually really nice. I like it. Maybe the red wine I had before was bad.”

“Maybe. Some of the cheap stuff tastes pretty awful.” I pour more into her glass before filling mine. I hold up my glass and wait for her to raise hers.

“To chance meetings.”

“To new adventures and great company to share them with.” We toast and take a sip, each smiling behind the rim.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Amazon Paperback

If you have Kindle Unlimited you can borrow this series for Free!

Join Amazon Kindle Unlimited 30-Day Free Trial

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Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card and Digital Copy of Helena Hunting’s A LIE FOR A LIE

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

965E5447-1A96-428F-B355-4B949A912726New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. Helena writes everything from contemporary romance with all the feels to romantic comedies that will have you laughing until you cry.

Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: ONE DARK WISH (Deadly Force) by Sharon Wray

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ONE DARK WISH (Deadly Force Series, Book 2) by Sharon Wray

Publication Date: September 24, 2019 

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Synopsis

2885ECBD-6FB2-4E0B-B61F-A38D3742AE66Her life must be forfeit for his to be redeemed

Historian Sarah Munro is not used to being shot at, but that’s just what happens while she’s poking around cemeteries on Georgia’s Isle of Grace, searching for the key to a centuries-old cipher. Her quest has unwittingly drawn the attention of two deadly enemies intent on destroying each other—and anyone who gets in their way.

Ex–Green Beret Major Nate Walker is on a mission of his own: to restore the honor of his men. To do that, he is required to stop Sarah—or one of his own men will die. Caught in the middle of a deadly rivalry, Nate can’t afford to trust the woman standing in his way. But his heart says he can’t afford not to…

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Excerpt

PROLOGUE 

“The man bowed.” Sarah Munro hiked her straw bag higher on her shoulder and followed the officer down the Savannah Police Department’s hallway. He held a cell phone to his ear, and she yanked his arm. “And a woman died tonight.” 

He nodded, but his deep frown, as well as his dismissive wave, told her he wasn’t too concerned about the murder. Or the fact that Sarah had found the body in the Savannah Preservation Office’s courtyard fountain. 

Was a death in the historic district so commonplace that it didn’t warrant its own investigator? Frustrated, she followed him around the corner toward the second-floor landing when her cell phone buzzed. A text from her father. Where are you? 

She halted near the stairs, her fingers hovering over the phone’s keyboard. She debated how much to tell him. Then again, he probably already knew. 

She texted, I’ll be home soon. 

Someone bumped her as they passed, and she moved closer to the vending machine that carried only rows of Coke cans. Her officer stood nearby, talking on the phone, while federal, state, and local LEOs congregated in groups around the open area. Her father had told her that the city had numerous task forces, all trying to combat the rising crime rate. She and her dad had returned to Savannah nine months ago, and in that short time, they’d both noticed the uptick in drug use and violence. 

It’s dark. I’ll come get you, her father texted back. 

No. Not only did she not want her father worrying about her, he wasn’t supposed to drive. I’m leaving soon. Drink your tea. 

I hate that tea. It tastes like sh*t. 

Despite the ache in her chest, she smiled. Yes, he hated the tea. Yet it was the only thing that helped with his recurring seizures. And if he thought that being even more cranky than usual meant she’d ease up on the herbal leaves, he was wrong. I don’t care. Drink it. 

She glanced at her officer—who was still on his phone—and debated leaving. If the cops wanted her statement, they knew where she worked. The same place where a woman had been murdered. “I’m leaving, Officer. But I know what I saw.” 

He ignored her, and she turned toward the stairs. 

“Sarah?” A male voice cut through the station’s din, ringing phones, and metal chairs scraping along seventy-year-old linoleum. 

She blinked one man into focus. Tall, broad shoulders, long blond hair tied at the base of his neck, angular face, and deep, ocean-green eyes. The kind a girl could lose herself in. “Nate?” 

Was that her breathy voice? She swallowed, and a warm flush rose from her neck to her cheeks. She wasn’t sure why, but since meeting Nate Walker yesterday, she’d felt shaky and incoherent and…restless. 

Does he know what I did to his map? 

“I heard what happened.” He touched her arm before shoving both hands in the front pockets of his jeans. His biker jacket stretched across his shoulders, the black leather rustling with the movement. “Are you okay?” 

“I wasn’t hurt.” She stared at the red-and-white vending machine and blinked. Daughters of cops didn’t cry. They endured. “This is my fault, Nate. I’d asked my assistant to do some research for me. I had no idea she was staying late.” 

“This isn’t your fault.” He leaned in closer, the scar on his cheek appearing deeper and more ragged. His pine-scented aftershave tickled her nose. “I’m sorry.” 

She wiped her palms on her chiffon skirt, relieved he didn’t seem to realize she’d secretly photographed the seventeenth-century map he’d brought to the preservation office for her to look at. The map included the only layout she’d ever seen of the remote, colonial-era Cemetery of Lost Children on the Isle of Grace. Even though the property’s owner—and Nate himself—had both told her to stay away, she was determined to visit as soon as possible. 

She was a terrible person. “My dad was a police chief in Boston, so unfortunately I’m used to things like this. I’d just hoped Savannah was safer.” 

“Nate?” A man built like a wrestler with long, black, braided hair yelled from the lobby on the first floor. “We gotta go, man.” 

Nate ignored him and kept his attention on her mouth. “I couldn’t help but overhear. What did you see?” 

She licked her lips. “You’d never believe me.” She wasn’t sure she believed it herself. Loud voices downstairs distracted her. Two military policemen in full uniform and carrying weapons had entered the station. “That’s odd. What do you think they want?” 

Nate took her hand and led her into a nearby alcove. “What did you see?” 

She pressed her hands against his chest. His heart pounded, and he radiated heat like an engine revving. “What are you doing?” 

“Nate?” The man with the braid ran up the stairs. “Time to go. Now.” 

“Please, Sarah. Tell me. 

The MPs were right behind Nate’s buddy. 

“In the shadows, I saw a man bow.” 

She heard Nate’s sharp inhale right before he kissed her, his gentle hands on her shoulders at odds with his demanding lips. His warmth wrapped her in an erotic haze and he tasted like mint and summer breezes. 

Had she moaned? Good golly Moses. 

“Excuse me, ma’am.” 

Nate broke off the kiss because the man with the braid had taken his arm and dragged him down the hallway to the emergency exit, the MPs on their heels. Chills scurried along her arms, and she wrapped her sweater around herself. She touched her swollen lips, still stunned. Still tasting his peppermint mouthwash. Still inhaling his scent that reminded her of freshly cut grass and pine trees. 

Nate glanced at her before he hit the metal exit and disappeared. The door slammed shut with a loud reverb. Apparently, he’d locked it as well. When the MPs couldn’t force it open, they turned and ran past her, one of them brushing her skirt as they headed toward the stairs. 

What do MPs want with Nate Walker? 

“Miss Munro?” The officer who’d been ignoring her touched her elbow. “I’m ready for your statement.” 

She pulled away, her attention on the MPs racing out the front doors. She was a woman who sought the truth in both her professional and personal life. But tonight’s revelation was more than a cheap magazine tell-all. It was an earth-shattering event that stripped away the delusions she’d been carrying her entire adult life. One delusion in particular: when Nate’s lips had touched hers, she discovered she’d never truly understood what it meant to be kissed. 

“Ma’am?” 

She nodded. She’d give her statement. Then go home to her father. But as she followed the officer into an interrogation room, she couldn’t help but wonder if she’d ever see Nate again. No. If she was being honest with herself, which she always tried to be, she wondered if she’d ever kiss Nate again. 

Excerpted from One Dark Wish by Sharon Wray. © 2019 by Sharon Wray. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

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Giveaway

5 Copies of EVERY DEEP DESIRE

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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About the Author

Version 3Sharon Wray is a librarian/archivist who studied dress design in the couture houses of Paris and now writes stories of adventure, suspense, and love. She’s a three-time Daphne du Maurier® winner and an eight-time RWA Golden Heart® Finalist. She lives with her super-hero husband and teenage twins in Northern Virginia.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: SILVER TOWN WOLF: HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS by Terry Spear

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SILVER TOWN WOLF: HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS by Terry Spear

Publication Date: September 24, 2019

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis

0A2307B4-2537-4C40-970A-F843856C72EDSilver Town is howling with Christmas cheer

Gray wolves Meghan MacTire and Sheriff Peter Jorgenson plan to spend the rest of their lives together, and what better time to start forever than Christmas? But they are both harboring dark secrets that are about to surface and threaten their future together. With holiday magic in the air and all Silver Town ready to celebrate, Meghan and Peter have to conquer the past if they’re to have any hope of spending this Christmas in each other’s arms.

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Donna 4 stars

This was a fun addition to the Silver Town Wolves. (POSSIBLE SPOILER)  I’m still up in the air about ghosts and how it dominated the story, but it did add an interesting dimension to this sexy romance. The real-life danger dogging Meghan could have carried the story if it had more action and suspense. That may have cut in on the day-to-day building love for each other and bonding with the town. Meghan and Peter made a lovely and believable couple, neither too bogged down in what happened in their pasts. I’m glad they took care of that angle early on so they could focus on everything else going on. This was a nice holiday romance that I enjoyed.

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

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Excerpt

“I have to change clothes,” Meghan MacTire said to her sisters, Laurel and Ellie. She was feeling a little anxious about the date she was going on with Sheriff Peter Jorgenson tonight, since she needed to tell him about her psychic ability to speak with and see ghosts.

Running their Victorian inn in wolf-run Silver Town, Colorado, had been keeping the triplet sister busy during the holiday season. And now it was just ten days until Christmas. Meghan had hoped she and the sheriff could go to her home for an intimate dinner and watch Christmas movies, like they’d been doing whenever they could get the free time. But tonight he wanted to take her out to the Silver Town Tavern. The food and atmosphere were great there, and it was private membership, so only wolves were allowed. Still, it wasn’t as relaxing after a hectic day. Especially when everyone in the pack was wondering if Peter and she were mating. If not, other bachelor males in the pack were waiting in the wings. Some were sure to see her and Peter at the tavern and would be keeping an eye on their relationship.

“Do you think he’s going to ask you tonight if you want to mate him?” Laurel asked. Her sisters had been dying to know when Peter would pop the question. They were both mated to Silver brothers and couldn’t wait until Meghan was mated as well.

“I don’t know. I’ll let you in on it if it happens, you know.” Meghan had been dating Peter for over a year now, not really typical but everyone was different. Sam and Silva, owners of a tea shop and the tavern, had dated for years before they finally tied the knot. Peter didn’t seem to be in a rush to ask Meghan to mate him, and she needed to discuss some issues with him that could affect how he viewed her.

Besides her ghost abilities, she had sent a wolf to prison before she moved to Silver Town, something one of their kind was never to do, and she hated to tell Peter. Even if he could live with what she’d done, she didn’t want anyone else in the pack to know. Would he be willing to keep her dark secret? Or would it bother him that he had to?

She could imagine the news getting out to the rest of the pack, and she knew some would no longer see her the same way. She wished that night had never happened, but it had. And there was nothing she could do to take it back.

She’d been so hurt the last time she’d mentioned it to a wolf boyfriend that she never wanted to discuss it with anyone again. The ex-boyfriend and her sisters were the only ones who knew. But she had to tell Peter before long. Tomorrow night. She couldn’t do it at the tavern. She had to talk to him privately about it before he asked her if she wanted to mate him, and she thought he might ask soon. She kept thinking something might be holding him back too, some dark secret of his own. Unless she was projecting her own mistake on him.

Meghan managed a smile for her sisters before she became too melancholy thinking about the notion. She pulled on her coat and headed for the back door of the inn.

“Have fun,” Laurel and Ellie both said.

“Thanks!” Meghan hurried outside to reach her Victorian house through the snow-covered garden. Just in case Peter proposed, she planned to wear a red satin dress, hoping she didn’t look too overdressed, as if she was expecting something to happen. But it was Christmastime, and she was going to dress up since she didn’t normally.

When she arrived home, she went upstairs to her bedroom and pulled the dress out of the closet. Maybe it would be a little much. Too dressy. Too shiny. Too sexy. Maybe she should just wear a green sweater and her MacTire plaid skirt and boots.

She brought them out and laid them next to the red dress on the canopied Victorian replica bed. She stripped out of her slacks and sweater and considered both outfits. It was cold out. Really cold out. And snowy.

She eyed the red dress. She’d never worn it for Peter. Hopefully, it wouldn’t be the wrong choice. She pulled off her bra and put on the red strapless one she’d purchased to wear with the dress. Then she pulled on the dress and struggled to reach the zipper on the low, low back. Darn it. She couldn’t reach it, no matter how hard she tried. She’d only worn the dress once—to a Christmas party two years ago when she and her sisters still lived in St. Augustine, Florida—and she’d forgotten she needed help with the zipper.

Before Peter arrived, she called Laurel. “Hey, I can’t get my zipper zipped. Can either you or Ellie come over and zip it up for me?”

“Ohmigod, you’re wearing the red dress. I’ll be right over. Unless you want Peter to zip it up for you.”

Right. Hurry, before he gets here.” Meghan hated to ask. She knew Laurel would tell Ellie that Meghan was wearing the dress, created to hook a guy for sure. Yes, it was an eye-catcher, but she’d never caught a wolf’s attention while wearing it.

She brought out her red high heels before Laurel arrived. If Peter proposed, she wanted to be dressed for the occasion, though she reminded herself they still had to talk before she could say yes.

Excerpted from Silver Town Wolf: Home for the Holidays by Terry Spear. © 2019 by Terry Spear. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

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Giveaway

5 Copies of Destiny of the Wolf

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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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.

 Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: PUPPY CHRISTMAS by Lucy Gilmore 

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PUPPY CHRISTMAS (Forever Home Series, Book 2) by Lucy Gilmore

Publication Date: September 24, 2019

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Synopsis

6A0CE99D-4993-462A-8006-E5CC9F27FA03These adorable service puppies
are matchmakers in the making…

Lila Vasquez might not be the “fun one” at Puppy Promise—the service puppy training school she runs with her sisters—but she can always be counted on to get things done. So when her latest client shows an interest in princess gowns over power suits, Lila puts aside her scruples, straps on the glittery heels, and gets to work.

If only the adorable six-year-old’s father wasn’t such an appealing Prince Charming.

Ford’s whole life revolves around his daughter…until he meets Lila. Smart, capable, and amazing at helping Emily gain confidence with her new service puppy at her side, Lila is everything he ever wanted—but she’s way out of his league. Good thing Emily and her new pup are up to the matchmaking task. This Christmas, it’s all hands (and paws) on deck!

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Donna 5 Stars

I thoroughly enjoyed this light contemporary romance. Sometimes quirky, sometimes solemn, it ticked all my boxes and kept me reading. To Lila, she evolved throughout the story, but to the readers and those around her, she became the loving and fun person she was at the beginning. I liked her from the start and enjoyed her journey. Ford was a likeable single father raising a hearing impaired daughter. His flirting was an emotional shield that crumbled when he met Lila. The immediate attraction between them was believable and a joy watching it grow into a smoking romance. Christmas and the puppies only added to the charm. I now have a new author added to my “must read” list.

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

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Excerpt

“We’re going to the symphony. We’re visiting art galleries and sipping overpriced white wine. Oh, I’ve got it! You’re taking me to the fanciest store in the city and buying me a new dress. I’ll be like Pretty Woman, except you won’t have to pay me for s-e-x later.”
Ford cast a sidelong look at Lila. She’d caught her lower lip between her teeth, but she didn’t look up from the phone in her lap.
“I like to make the first one free to get the ladies hooked,” he explained. “Then I ratchet up the price accordingly.”
That didn’t get her to take the bait, either. “Turn right at the next intersection,” she instructed him. “Parking should be in the big lot on the right. And for the record, I don’t think that’s a very good way to run your gigolo business. Why would the cow pay for milk after the fact?”
“The cow isn’t the one paying for the milk. The cow is the one providing it.” He clucked his tongue and shook his head. “And here I thought you were supposed to be the smart one.”
That got her to glance up, her gaze sharp. “I never said that.”
“No, you didn’t,” he agreed cheerfully as he pulled his minivan into the last of a row of cars. “But that doesn’t make it any less true.”
She had no response to this, which was just as well since they’d arrived at their mystery destination. He had no idea where they were or why, but he didn’t care. The fact that he was on an actual date with Lila was enough.
It wasn’t just any date, either. He’d had to lift nary a finger to make it happen. Apparently, Lila took her role as invitee very seriously. From dropping Emily off at her mom’s house to planning the evening from start to finish, she’d handled everything on her own. All Ford had to do was doll himself up and wait to be whisked away for an evening of romantic bliss.
It was a new experience for him—and a delightful one. Lila was wooing him. Lila was wooing him hard.
He, too, was hard just thinking about it.
Although that wasn’t really fair. He’d been in the same state of agonized anticipation for days. No number of cold showers or hot showers or short, frantic showers with his cock in his hand had helped. Nor had Lila’s constant presence in his home. How she managed to sit with his daughter and Jeeves, cool and collected as she went through the steps of puppy training, was a mystery.
“Here. We’re going to need this.” Lila reached into the pocket of the white wool coat she wore and handed him a flask. “It’s like fifteen degrees outside. It’s straight bourbon, in case you’re wondering.”
“You remembered,” he said as he accepted the flask and took a long pull. “My vice of choice.”
It wasn’t the cheap stuff, either. The woodsy-sweet taste coated his tongue and throat, the warm burn making him feel almost giddy.
“I have my occasional value,” she admitted. “Remembering things in painstaking detail doesn’t make me a very endearing person, but it does make me a useful one.”
He opened his mouth to argue, to tell her that her value lay primarily in her ability to make him feel relaxed and happy and like a hot-blooded man again, but he didn’t have a chance to get the words out before she pulled a white knit cap over her head and secured her gloves onto her hands.
Lila was a stunning woman almost all the time, her poise and grace so ingrained that he doubted she was aware of them, but there was something about the way the cap framed her face that almost undid him. She looked absurdly youthful, her cheeks flushed from the bourbon and the cold and—he hoped—the company.
Unable to help himself, he leaned across the console and dropped a kiss onto her slightly parted lips. Surprise rendered her delightfully malleable, her mouth giving way to his for a full ten seconds before she realized what was happening and kissed him back. That was delightful, too, but for entirely different reasons—most of which had to do with the fact that she wasn’t about to let him have his wicked way with her without giving him his own back again. In fact, that was a thing she’d done since the day they’d first met. He could, on occasion, catch her off guard, but it rarely lasted for long.
She proved it by deepening the kiss. The assault of her tongue and the warm press of her mouth against his invoked every sense he had—taste and smell and glorious touch. She even released a soft moan into his mouth that made his head whir with possibilities.
And then she ended it as quickly as it began.
“Let’s skip the date,” he said before he’d even managed to open his eyes again. “I don’t care if we’re flying to the Eiffel Tower on a private jet run entirely on champagne. Let’s stay in this van and make out instead.”
She didn’t move. “You don’t want to see what I have planned?”
He’d opened his eyes by this time, but the parking lot lighting was dim, and what little vision he did have was obscured by the stars dazzling his vision. Actual g-o-d-d-a-m-n stars.

Excerpted from Puppy Christmas by Lucy Gilmore. © 2019 by Lucy Gilmore. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

Amazon Series Link

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Giveaway

3 Copies of Puppy Love

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

Lucy Gilmore is a contemporary romance author with a love of puppies, rainbows, and happily ever afters. She began her reading (and writing) career as an English literature major and ended as a die-hard fan of romance in all forms. When she’s not rolling around with her two Akitas, she can be found hiking, biking, or with her nose buried in a book. Visit her online at http://lucygilmore.com. She lives in the Spokane, WA area.

Author Website: lucygilmore.com

Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway: A DASH OF CHRISTMAS by Samantha Chase

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A DASH OF CHRISTMAS (Montgomery Brothers) by Samantha Chase

Publication Date: September 24, 2019 

Genre: Contemporary Romance 

Synopsis

0FCF4B7D-33E7-4874-A23C-E6643D942FF8With a dash of Christmas magic…

Two people who have spent most of their lives being rivals…

Learn a little something about following their hearts…

Carter Montgomery broke the family mold when he went to culinary school. Now a successful restauranteur, he’s at a crossroads: should he continue on his successful path or look for a new challenge? What he needs is time alone to think things through. But his matchmaking family has other ideas

Emery Monaghan’s no-good fiancé has embroiled her in scandal and she needs a way out. When mentor Eliza Montgomery offers her a refuge, she’s relieved—until she realizes that the deal means rubbing elbows with Eliza’s son Carter—Emery’s childhood nemesis.

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Excerpt

“Don’t go.”

His voice was raw and it wasn’t hard to tell there was a battle waging within him. Normally, Emery enjoyed watching Carter squirm and struggle, but for some reason seeing him this emotional after a call with his mother affected her in a way she didn’t expect.

She felt compassion for him—a need to comfort him and tell him it was going to be all right.

She made her way toward him. “I think it would be best for everyone if I did. You didn’t deserve to be blindsided like this, and I’m sorry it happened this way. I truly believed you were aware of what was going on and you were coming here specifically to work on the book. I had no idea your trip here had nothing to do with it or that you were so against giving it more attention.”

Carter’s shoulders sagged a little. “At any other time…”

“I know,” she said softly, moving a little closer. “I get it. Hey, there isn’t anything I can do about whatever else you’re dealing with, but on this particular subject, I can. I’ll work with the files you sent your mother and I’ll make it into something closer to what she’s looking for, okay? And in the meantime, I’ll stay out of your way so you can have at least one night’s peace.”

They stood in silence for a long time, and as much as Emery wanted to pack and get out of his way, she couldn’t seem to make herself move. In all the years they had known one another, they had bickered and poked fun at each other and essentially gone out of their own way to make the other miserable. It was what they did. It was comfortable. But right now, she couldn’t think of a single snarky or antagonistic comment.

And that freaked her out.

Swallowing hard, she took a step back. And then another. Next thing she knew, she had spun and was walking back to her bedroom, mildly trembling. She went straight to her closet and pulled out her weekender bag. Knowing she wasn’t going to be going out or doing anything other than vegging in her hotel room, she walked over to her dresser and pulled out a couple of pairs of yoga pants, a few T-shirts, a pair of pajamas, and a pair of shorts and tossed them in the bag. Next, she opened her lingerie drawer and was pulling out a handful of panties when a large male hand closed over hers. Gasping with surprise, she turned and found herself face-to-face with Carter.

While they both held her panties.

Awesome.

Emery wanted to be outraged—or at the very least annoyed that he had invaded her space when she was clearly trying to be the bigger person here, but for some reason she couldn’t seem to make herself speak or react.

What was happening to her?

“This is crazy,” he said, his voice deep and low and borderline hypnotic.

So he felt it, too? This sudden, crazy pull toward one another? The change in the air around them?

“I already said I didn’t want you to go, Em,” he went on and that’s when she realized what he was talking about.

Forcing her gaze away, she carefully pulled her hand and underwear from his. “I think it’s for the best.” Then she moved away, tossing her garments in the weekender bag along with the rest of her clothes. For a few minutes, she busied herself collecting odds and ends—her laptop, her e-reader, her iPod—before going into the bathroom and grabbing her toothbrush, makeup, and brushes. Anything else she needed she’d get from housekeeping. When she walked back out into the bedroom, she found Carter sitting quietly on her bed.

And her weekender bag emptied.

Okay, now she was outraged.

“Seriously, Carter?” she cried. “Why can’t you just let me do this?”

He shrugged. “I already told you. It’s not necessary.”

“To me it is! There’s no reason for me to stay here. And, might I remind you, I’ve been a thorn in your side since we were kids!”

It pleased her that he paled a little at having his words thrown back at him.

“I would think you’d be thankful that I was leaving,” she said, hating the tremor in her voice. “One less thing for you to worry about.”

The curse that flew out of his mouth followed by a huff of annoyance didn’t really surprise her. This was them. This was the relationship they had. And honestly, she preferred this to the strained silence and whatever it was that she was feeling just minutes ago.

Carter stood and walked over until they were toe to toe. “What I said to my mother,” he began and then stopped. “What I mean is, that was said in the heat of the moment and really, it couldn’t have been news to you. I’ve been telling you that to your face since we were twelve.”

“Eleven, but…whatever,” she corrected and smirked when he growled with frustration.

“That! That right there is why I said it! Can’t you just let some things go?”

Me?” she cried. “How about you? I was being the bigger person here! I was putting your feelings first, and where did that get me, huh? I should be in a cab on my way to a hotel with room service, but instead I’m here arguing with you again! Why couldn’t you just let me leave?”

They both instantly fell silent and Emery felt herself holding her breath while she waited for his answer.

“What’s the matter?” she finally asked. “Is it possible the arrogant Carter Montgomery has nothing to say for himself for the first time in his life?”

Yeah, she was taunting him, but…she needed to. Needed things to be like they always were. If she didn’t get them back on solid ground—back on the familiar turf of a lifelong rivalry—she wouldn’t know what to do. For years she’d been aware of Carter as a person. She couldn’t deal with suddenly being aware of him as a man.

When his only response was a slight tick in his jaw, she figured she’d poke the bear a little more. “Did you burn the sauce? Is that why we’re not eating yet? Or maybe you realized all that pretentious crap you bought was no better than grabbing a couple of slices from the pizzeria on the corner.” She noted he seemed to be almost inflating before her eyes—his posture straightened, his shoulders seemed to grow broader…

Go big or go home, right?

Leaning in, she said, “I bet you really don’t know how to make homemade pizza. At least not good homemade pizza.” She let out a devious little laugh. “Probably thought I would be too naive to know the difference. You probably could have served up one of my frozen pizzas and I wouldn’t know the difference.”

He was breaking molars now, no doubt.

“Not that it matters. I’ve got some microwave popcorn I can have for dinner, along with the last brownie. That’s the kind of stuff I can count on—and will probably be a lot more enjoyable.”

This time when Emery tried to move away, Carter’s large hand on her arm stopped her.

She had to hide her smile of satisfaction. “Problem?” she asked innocently.

“You’ve got a real smart mouth, Emery, but you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about.”

“Oh, really? Care to explain?”

But he shook his head. “As a matter of fact, no. I don’t.”

She shrugged. “Fine, whatever. Now, if you’ll excuse me, my dinner awaits.”

“If you so much as think of making popcorn for dinner, I’ll strangle you,” he said, tugging her closer.

When she leaned in until they were nose to nose, she said, “I dare you.”

“Such a smart mouth,” he said right before he claimed it.

Excerpted from A Dash of Christmas by Samantha Chase. © 2019 by Samantha Chase. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

Amazon Series Link

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Giveaway

 

2 Bundles of The Montgomery Brothers Books 1-4

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

New York Times and USA Today Bestseller/contemporary romance writer Samantha Chase released her debut novel, Jordan’s Return, in November 2011. Although she waited until she was in her 40’s to publish for the first time, writing has been a lifelong passion. Her motivation to take that step was her students: teaching creative writing to elementary age students all the way up through high school and encouraging those students to follow their writing dreams gave Samantha the confidence to take that step as well.

With twenty-three titles currently to her name, she has no plans to slow down. The success of the Montgomery Brothers series has her working on six new titles in that collection as well as two new exciting series set to start popping up on bookshelves in 2015. You won’t find her books with the erotica or paranormal titles, all of her works are pure contemporary romances.

When she’s not working on a new story, she spends her time reading contemporary romances, blogging, playing way too many games of Scrabble on Facebook and spending time with her husband of 25 years and their two sons in North Carolina.

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