Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: THE GOOD ONES by Jenn McKinlay

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THE GOOD ONES (Happily Ever After Book 1) by Jenn McKinlay

Publication Date: February 5, 2019

Genre: Contemporary Romance

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2E370382-B877-453A-BBB3-C955FCB0AB9FA romance bookstore owner finds her own happily ever after with a single dad in a new romance series from the New York Times bestselling author of Every Dog Has His Day.

Ryder Copeland is an accomplished architect and one heck of a father…not to mention tall and sexy. He’s everything a hero should be, and Lord knows, Maisy Kelly has read enough of her great-aunt Eloise’s romance novels to recognize one when she sees one. But like all fairy tales, Maisy can’t help but wonder if this Prince Charming is too good to be true…

Ryder is drawn to the shy, curly haired professor who hires him to convert the Victorian house she’s inherited from her aunt into a romance bookstore. Attracted to a woman for the first time since his divorce, Ryder finds himself wishing for a future with Maisy that he knows is impossible. Ryder has never wavered from his plan to leave the small town of Fairdale, North Carolina, so he can give his daughter the life she deserves. But suddenly he’s not so sure. And the closer he gets to Maisy, the harder it’s going to be to walk away…

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Donna 5 Stars

This is a feel-good story from start to finish. Yes, Maisy and Ryder had their obstacles and felt the need to keep their distance, but nothing too angst ridden or frustrating for me. Maisy, her dreams for the bookstore, love of romance novels and optimism, connected me to her. I love the whole idea of that store and enjoyed how the author verbally illustrated the power of the romance novel. Ryder, like most men, had some preconceived ideas on what his future should be. Good thing he had his daughter and Maisy to open his eyes to new possibilities. I liked his humor and tenderness, all wrapped up in a sexy package. This is a light romance with just enough heat to keep me warm, and enough love and friendship to keep me smiling long after I closed the book. I look forward to book two in this series.

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

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Excerpt

When Jake took off his cowboy hat and pulled her close, Claire wrapped her arms around him and the two became one. When they kissed she knew they were making each other a promise for today, tomorrow, and forever. Clare sighed. For the first time in her life, she knew that no matter what happened this man, who was her partner and her best friend, would be by her side. For all time.

 Maisy Kelly closed the book and pressed it to her chest and sighed. Jake Sinclair, the perfect man, why did he reside only in the pages of a book? It wasn’t fair. She was twenty-nine and none of the men she’d ever dated had been even remotely as caring or charming as Jake Sinclair.

Knock knock knock.

Maisy blinked. Someone was at the door. No, no, no. She had a book hangover and she didn’t want to deal with the world right now.

Knock knock knock.

They weren’t going away. Maisy rose from where she’d been seated on the bottom step of the stairs. In theory, she was supposed to be cleaning out her Great Aunt Eloise’s house, in reality she was binge reading Auntie El’s hoarder’s trove of romance novels. It wasn’t making the task, which was heartbreaking to begin with, any easier.

Knock knock knock.

“All right, all right,” Maisy grumbled. “I’m coming.”

She strode to the door and yanked it open. Probably, if she had bothered to glance through the peep hole she would have been prepared, but she hadn’t and she wasn’t.

Standing on her front step, looking impossibly handsome and imposing, was a cowboy. Maisy glanced down at her book. On the cover was the artist’s rendering of Jake Sinclair, in jeans and a white shirt, leaning against a split rail fence, with a brown cowboy hat tipped carelessly over his brow. Maisy could practically hear the cows mooing in the background.

She glanced back up. Jeans, white shirt, and a cowboy hat. This guy had it all going on, except where the artist had left Jake’s face in shadow and not clearly defined, this guy was a full on 3D HD of hotness, with full lips, faint stubble on his chin, and quite possibly the bluest eyes Maisy had ever seen this side of the sky. She had a sudden urge to poke him with her pointer finger to see if he was real.

 “Mornin’, Miss,” the man drawled, drawled.

Miss? Huh, she hadn’t been called “Miss” since she’d started teaching at Fairdale University. Why would he…she glanced down.

She was wearing her favorite floral Converse All-stars, ripped up denim shorts, and her old Fairdale University sweatshirt, the one with the sleeves that hung down past her hands, oh, and she had on no makeup and her hair was held back by an enormous pink headband. She probably looked like one of her college students, possibly a freshman.

In that brief shining moment, she was certain if it was possible to die of embarrassment, she would expire in three…two…one. She gave it a second. Nope, still standing. Damn it.

“Listen, I’m sorry, sir, but whatever you’re selling, I’m not interested—,” she began but he cut her off.

“Oh, I’m not selling anything,” he said. He looked confused. “This is three-twenty-three Willow Lane, right?”

“Yes, it is. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to get back–,” she let her voice trail off, hoping he’d get the hint. He didn’t.

“I have an appointment with a Ms. Kelly,” he said. “Or Mrs. Kelly, I’m not sure.”

Maisy knew she didn’t have any appointments today. That was why she’d indulged herself in a good long reading sesh. This guy was probably a hustler, trying to con her to buy some property insurance or new windows. Ever since she’d inherited this monster of a house from Auntie El she’d had all sorts of scammers climbing out of the cracks in the sidewalk, trying to get her to refinance or buy a security system. It was exhausting.

The man met her squinty stare with one of his own. He shrinkled up one eye and mimicked her look of disbelief right down to the small lip curl. The nerve! Then she saw the twinkle in his one open eye, and Maisy couldn’t hold it. She burst out laughing.

He grinned at her and her ire diminished as she noted the cowboy had a sense of humor. Okay, she decided to give him a break and at least take his name and number.

 “I’m sorry,” she said. “What was your appointment with Ms. Kelly about?”

 “It’s about the house, actually,” he said. “My name’s Ryder Copeland. I’m a restoration architect, and you are?”

“Ryder Copeland?” Maisy’s eyes went wide. “But our appointment isn’t until tomorrow, you know, Tuesday.”

“Today is Tuesday,” he said.

“No, it isn’t,” she said. “It’s Monday.”

“Sorry, it really is Tuesday. Wait,” he said. “Our appointment? You’re Maisy Kelly?”

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Kindle | Paperback

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Giveaway

Paperback Copy of THE GOOD ONES by Jenn McKinlay

Enter on Facebook Post Here

Winner will be selected Sunday (2/10) by 6PM EST. Reading in Pajamas is responsible for this giveaway. Paperback was provided to Reading in Pajamas by Penguin.

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Jenn is the New York Times, USA Today, and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author of several mystery and romantic comedy series. She lives in sunny Arizona in a house that is overrun with kids, pets, and her husband’s guitars.

Visit her website at: http://www.jennmckinlay.com

Or follow her:
Facebook: JennMcKinlayAuthor
Instagram: @mckinlayjenn
Twitter: @JennMcKinlay

 

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Spotlight, Review & Giveaway: THE WHOLE PACKAGE by Marie Harte

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THE WHOLE PACKAGE (Veteran Movers Book 1) by Marie Harte

Publication Date: January 29, 2019

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Synopsis

b5513d52-433e-45cc-8343-e3680bce7b57Vets on the Go!
They didn’t plan to become heroes…

When former Marine Reid Griffith started his moving company, hiring only veterans, he just wanted to help his brother Cash adjust to civilian life. But when Cash is caught taking down a thief mid-robbery, the video goes viral. Suddenly Vets on the Go! are local heroes…and Reid’s phone explodes. He needs help handling the deluge of interest—fast.

When PR expert Naomi Starr sees the news spot of a muscular vet expertly apprehending a bad guy with duct tape, she knows Vets on the Go! is just the thing to revive her career. There’s just one problem. Naomi has vowed to never mix business with pleasure. Ever. Again. And tall, dark and brawny Reid Griffith is a whole package of temptation.

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Donna review 4.5 stars

10% into the book and I knew I was going to like it. The group at Vets on the Go moving company are the perfect mix of personalities. Their banter and difficulty getting to know each other was fun to read. Poor Reid looked like a goldfish herder trying to get them all to work together. I liked Reid, he had a vulnerability under his tough exterior that made him real. Naomi was a little harder to read at first, but it didn’t take long for me to warm up to her. I liked them as a couple, each strong, yet still needing strength from the other. The steamy sex blended well with their budding romance and made for a nice read. The biggest thing I liked about this book is the group dynamic. It made me want to be a part of it all, and impatient for the next installment. I’m dying to learn Cash’s story.

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

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Excerpt

“Just get in.” When she didn’t, he glowered. “I can wait all night.”
She stared back at him, a little alarmed when he closed the distance between them.
Then he shocked her by pressing her up against the car, full-body contact. The heat of him singed her. Suddenly, instead of feeling annoyed or scared, she wanted him in the worst way. Whoa, momma.
Reid ran a finger down her cheek. “I’m not letting you drive home.”
His implacable resolve surprised her. “Seriously, Reid. I’m a big girl. I know how to get home without getting mugged.”
He didn’t move, and she didn’t want to think about him pressed so firmly against her.
She didn’t see herself winning this battle, and though it was ridiculous to think she needed rescuing from herself, she had to admit it felt nice to have someone looking out for her. “If you really need to drive me home, go for it. But you’re going to feel stupid tomorrow when all that testosterone in your system wears off.” She added in a lower voice, “Won’t let me go. Please.”4045cef0-081a-4ee3-87a4-b186acc7a791
“I’d rather feel stupid than regret not helping you out.” He moved back to unlock the car and opened the door for her, then waited for her to settle in. After joining her, he followed her directions home.
Naomi could have been angry about it, but his need to protect softened something inside her. Something she’d need to firm up before dealing with the man again. Reid sat far too close. She could smell alcohol and the faint scent of cologne on him, and it went straight to her head. Hell, maybe she was a little loopy. She really needed to get something to eat.
They arrived at her home in Greenwood, a cute little bungalow she’d refused to sell, even after losing her job with PP&R. She’d worked so hard for her home and had finally gotten the house exactly as she’d wanted it
“You okay?” Reid asked as he parked.
“Yes, fine. You’ve done your duty. Go home.”
“Keys.”
Her purse was in his hands before she could grab it back.
“Damn it!”
He had her keys out and had already left the vehicle when she’d thrown open her door, only to have him help her out and up the sidewalk. A domineering yet polite gentleman.
He nodded at the house. “Nice place.”
“Thanks,” she said, grudgingly, loving the homey two-bedroom Craftsman. Dark purple with white trim and a tidy little porch, the house had plenty of room for her and Rex, should he deign to come home. Probably out catting around like half the men in this town, she thought…cattily.
She snorted. “I suppose you want to come in.”
“Just to make sure you’re okay.”
She rolled her eyes at him, but he ignored her. She heard his car beep, locked up tight, and she glared at him. If he had any intention of staying, she’d disabuse him of that notion right away. She watched him unlock the front door then step back to hold it open for her.
Since Rex didn’t greet her right away, she figured he was probably touring the neighborhood. With a little huff, she took the keys from Reid and walked inside. He closed the door behind them while she flicked on a light.
“It’s you,” he said. “Same blue in here as your office walls.”
Huh. He’d noticed. What did that mean? That he had good recall or actually possessed an interest in her? And why did she care?
She nearly tripped again and swore, then kicked off her stupid heels.
“You want some water? I know I’m parched. It’s been a long day.” Reid stepped past her into her open living room that led by a dining area into her kitchen. She refused to follow him inside and instead massaged her aching toes.
He returned with a glass for her.
“Make yourself at home, why don’t you?”
He didn’t say anything and handed her the glass. She took a sip and handed it back. “There. Now go home, please. Because of you, I’ll have to get someone to take me to my car in the morning.” Though if she was feeling industrious, she could walk the short distance to get it herself.
“I’ll swing by and pick you up.”
His bossy attitude that had somewhat charmed her before now annoyed her. “No, thanks.” She watched him drink her water and grew even more steamed. “I’m not some silly little woman needing your help Reid. I’m not drunk or impaired in any way. I’m tired and my feet hurt.”
He gave a small smile.
“You find that amusing?”
He set the glass down on a coaster on her side table, and she hated that she couldn’t nag him about that either. “You’re cute when you’re mad.”
“And helpless, right?” She felt a little lightheaded, which had nothing to do with exhaustion and everything to do with Reid. Around him, she felt more. Angry, annoyed, aroused. The three As of danger drawing nearer as he smiled at her distress. The bastard.
“Want me to help you, you poor, fragile thing?”
She could do without the smirk. “Yes, please,” she said, her voice sugary-sweet, then dragged him closer by the shirtfront, shocking him. “Isn’t this what you want? To take advantage of a helpless woman?”
“Hell, no.” Finally, a bit of his anger. He glared at her. “I’m trying to help you out, here, Naomi. Oh, forget it.”
“Oh, so now, because I’m a little aggressive, I’m not good enough for you.” She started to lose track of what she was saying, so close to Reid, to that firm chin with a hint of stubble, to that sexy smell of man and cologne, to the sheer breadth of him that seemed much bigger up close. Reid stood inches above her own height, their disparity even greater without her heels.
He tried to pry her hands free but stalled when he looked down into her eyes. “Y-you’re mad?” He sounded hoarse, his gaze moving slowly over her face and stilling on her mouth. “Hell,” he muttered.
“Yeah, I’m mad. You’re a menace, you know that?” Out of control and stirred to an angry passion by the man who refused to know she had her own mind, she yanked him down for an angrier kiss. The touch of his mouth under hers brought everything to a halt. An instant connection turned their burning chemistry into an all-out inferno.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

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Giveaway

d22f2882-7313-4ddf-9640-22fba3c82e3aSweepstakes Entry Information Here

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About the Author

Award-winning author Marie Harte has been writing professionally since 2005. She’s both a NY Times and USA Today bestselling author and has written over 100 books and counting. Marie writes books with heat, humor, and character.

She writes independently and for several publishers, to include Sourcebooks and Samhain. Though currently writing contemporary romance, she also writes paranormal and romantic suspense.

Before turning to writing full-time, she earned a B.A. in English from Pennsylvania State University and spent several years in the United States Marine Corps as a communications officer.

Marie currently lives in Central Oregon with her family. There’s nothing she likes more than finding a good book to read and a great cup of coffee to drink.

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Review: ONE TOUGH COWBOY by Lora Leigh & Veronica Chadwick

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ONE TOUGH COWBOY (Moving Violations, Book 1) by Lora Leigh & Veronica Chadwick

Publication Date: January 29, 2019

Genre: Western/ Contemporary Romance

Synopsis

eba73b3c-69e6-4e85-87f3-cb224b706b6bFirst in a brand-new series from #1 New York Times bestselling author Lora Leigh and Veronica Chadwick about one man’s pursuit of justice—and unbridled desire.

LAW AND ORDER.

For as long as Samantha can remember, Hunter—a man as strong as steel, with a heart of gold—has been her hero. It came as no surprise to Samantha when she found out that the ranch-hardened cowboy who always protected her from bullies went on to become the town’s sheriff. What does surprise her is how incredibly hot he still is. And how much she still wants him…

PRIDE AND PASSION

And, lo and behold, Hunter still has feelings for Samantha. The long-smoldering heat of their innocent flirtation has grown into a full-raging fire. But when tragedy strikes, and their small-town community is shattered, Hunter vows to do everything he can to keep his childhood sweetheart safe. But can Samantha trust that Hunter has her best interests at heart…and that, after all these years, his love is true?

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Donna 4 stars

This was a fast-paced story of intrigue and mystery, making you wonder who friend or foe was. Even when you knew who the bad guys were, it kept you reading to see how it played out. Hunter and Samantha were easy to get to know and had me invested in their future right away. Granted, Hunter got a bit smarmy later in the book with all his sexual innuendo. It seemed a bit excessive and out of character to me. As for the romance – it was red-hot sizzling. It’s a wonder they got any police work done. I think this book revolved more around their relationship than the dangerous mystery. I enjoyed it, but wish they spent more time on their non-bedroom working relationship. I look forward to the next installment in this new series.

 

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

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback 

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#1 New York Times bestseller Lora Leigh is the author of the Navy SEALS, the Breeds, the Elite Ops, the Callahans, the Bound Hearts, and the Nauti series.

Website | Facebook | Amazon

Veronica Chadwick started storytelling when she was a little girl. She was first published in 2004. She lives in Tennessee with three cats, a very spoiled Shih Tzu and two grand dogs. When she’s not writing, she’s hanging out with friends, reading or badly playing video games.

Goodreads | Amazon

Spotlight, Review & Giveaway: BEYOND RISK by Connie Mann

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BEYOND RISK (Florida Wildlife Warriors, Book 1) by Connie Mann

Publication Date: January 29, 2019

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Synopsis

958f8742-2fbb-40b9-a2f7-3b9a619713c6The river runs wild

Former Fish & Wildlife Officer Charlotte “Charlee” Tanner still carries the guilt of a tragic drowning accident that occurred on her watch. She hoped moving back home to the wilds of central Florida would provide a safe haven-until she learns the death was no accident, and she’s the intended target.

But no wilder than their passion

Tough and decisive, Lieutenant Hunter Boudreau loves his new job as a law enforcement officer with the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission. Charlee is his best friend, so when she comes under fire, he’s not letting her out of his sight until the killer is caught. But Charlee won’t sit by and let anyone else die for her.

As danger closes in and Charlee and Hunter’s attraction threatens to consume them, Charlee has to decide if she can trust Hunter. And to save Charlee, Hunter will have to trust her, too.

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Donna 5 Stars

This was a whitewater-rapids ride, with danger and suspense around every turn. I loved it. Charlee and Hunter were both believable and relatable, their backstories woven seamlessly into the story so that you became invested in them early on. I’m used to more graphic sex, but I did not miss it in the least, as the romance and physicality of it flowed well with the rest of the story. I could not put it down until I knew for sure who the bad guy was. Some situations may have been a little improbable, but they were sure fun to read. I’m looking forward to book two!

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

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Excerpt

While Hunter checked outside, Charlee popped the​second batch of cupcakes in the oven, his words echoing in her mind. Her heart ached for him over the loss of his brother. She would have wrapped him in her arms and told him how sorry she was if she thought he’d allow it.

She, better than most, understood the kind of guilt that gnawed at your heart, the sense of failure when things went wrong that never really went away. She also knew responsibility and the need to protect those you cared about. In that way, she and Hunter were exactly the same.

She shook out her fingers to get the blood flowing after clenching the wooden spoon so tightly. She knew every bit of the frustration churning inside him. But even though she knew things were different with Hunter, he still sounded just like her brothers. Or Rick. She wouldn’t tolerate a man telling her what to do “for her own protection.”

She snorted. Please. Capable woman here. Former cop. No pats on the head or macho swagger, thank you very much.

Hadn’t she followed her instincts and done what needed doing today? It had been exactly the right thing—no matter what he thought—and had shored up her battered confidence.

She allowed herself a little smile at that, then let out a breath. Enough. She had far more important things to think about than her muddled feelings for her maddening, altogether tempting best friend.

A bowl of chocolate fudge frosting sat on the table, and she was using her pastry tube to decorate the first batch of cupcakes when Hunter strode back in, his face void of all expression. She glanced up and went back to what she was doing. She didn’t have time to decipher what he was thinking. She didn’t care, either. At least that’s what she told herself.

He walked up behind her, and she could smell his woodsy scent and the heat that emanated from him. “Look, cher, I know you don’t like it, but I’m trying to protect you—”

He didn’t get any further than that. Without conscious thought, Charlee whirled around and shot half the tube of chocolate frosting right in his face, then calmly went back to her cupcakes. “Spare me the macho crap, Lieutenant. I don’t want to hear it.”

The silence went on for several beats, and Charlee had a moment to wonder if she’d gone too far. But then she heard him start to laugh. She looked up through her lashes and saw him tip his head back and laugh like she’d never heard him laugh, with his whole body.

She tried to keep from smiling, but finally gave up and joined in.

She was so distracted by the pull his laughter stirred in her belly that she yelped in surprise when a big glob of frosting landed on her nose. Followed immediately by another blob on her right check. And then her left. She tried to fight back with her pastry tube, but his assault was relentless, swiping frosting off his own face and transferring it to hers.

“Two can play this game, cher, and I’m betting I’ll win,” he warned, adding another layer to her chin.

“Oh yeah?” She went on the offensive, and they went back and forth, smearing frosting on each other.

Laughing and breathless, Charlee took a step back, stunned at the playfulness from such a serious man. She opened her mouth, trying to decide what to say, when his eyes met hers. Their laughter stilled as they studied each other. Behind the frosting and the laughter still dancing in his eyes, Charlee saw something more. Attraction, certainly. But something that went much deeper, that reached beyond friendship and caring and connected them in ways she was almost afraid to examine too closely.

Almost.

Charlee read the clear invitation in his eyes, and suddenly, her arms were around his neck, his wrapped around her back, and his hard mouth came down on hers. But where she expected aggression, he gave her featherlight kisses and licked the frosting from her lips, a smile on his own.

A shiver shot straight to her core, and she clutched his shoulders as he pulled her flush against him. The bands of muscle under her hands tightened, and she could feel the effect she had on him, but his arms didn’t feel like a cage, the way Rick’s had. No, Hunter was different. Danger clung to him like a second skin, but it was never directed at her. He growled low in his throat as he nuzzled her neck, and Charlee shivered, burrowing closer.

She shifted, giving him access to her neck, and ran her hands over his shoulders, down his arms, loving the way his hard grip made her feel safe even as his roaming hands and woodsy scent tempted her, invited her to move closer, to explore the fire that erupted whenever their skin touched.

When he nudged her lips open, she opened her mouth, welcomed his tongue in to dance with hers, hearts pounding, the kiss sparking and bursting to life until all Charlee felt was heat—his,
hers, theirs. Being in his arms was like nothing she’d ever experienced before.

It felt…right.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

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Giveaway

5 Copies of BEYOND RISK

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

Connie Mann is a licensed boat captain and loves writing romantic suspense stories set in Florida’s small towns and unspoiled wilderness. She is the author of Beyond Risk, (Florida Wildlife Warriors #1), the Safe Harbor series (Tangled Lies, Hidden Threat, Deadly Melody), as well as Angel Falls and Trapped! She has lived in seven different states but this weather wimp has happily called the Ocala area home for more than twenty years.

When she’s not dreaming up plotlines, you’ll find “Captain Connie” on the Silver River, introducing boats full of schoolchildren to their first alligator. She is also passionate about helping women and children in developing countries break the poverty cycle and build a better future for themselves and their families. Besides boating, she and her husband enjoy hanging out with their grown children and extended family and planning their next adventure.

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Blog Tour, Review & Giveaway: PLAYING FOR KEEPS by Jill Shalvis

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PLAYING FOR KEEPS: A Heartbreaker Bay Novel by Jill Shalvis

Publication Date: January 22, 2019

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Synopsis

ac776d8f-131e-45f1-b8ed-b7c637268b7eIf you’re planning on falling in love…

When it comes to the confident, charismatic Caleb Parker, Sadie Lane feels the spark—the kind that comes from rubbing each other the wrong way. She’s yoga pants, he’s a suit. She’s a tattoo artist, he’s a straight-laced mogul. But after they accidentally co-rescue an abandoned dog from a storm, Sadie sees a vulnerable side to the seemingly invincible hottie.

you’d better be sure…

Caleb doesn’t do emotions. Growing up the underdog, he’s learned the hard way to build up an impenetrable wall. Perfect for business. Disastrous for relationships. He’s never worried about it before—not until he finally gets behind Sadie’s armor and begins to fall.

… someone is there to catch you.

Both guarded and vulnerable, Sadie and Caleb are complete opposites. Or are they? Shocked at their undeniable connection, can they ever admit to wanting more? That all depends on what they’re each willing to risk.

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Donna 5 Stars

I truly enjoyed this story. It pulled me in on page one, and never let me go. I think a lot of that is the banter and camaraderie of all the players that make me want to move there. Sadie had an interesting past, but she remained relatable and loveable. I fell hard for Caleb. He was all together on the outside, even as he dealt with shadows in his own past. They were both real, making mistakes, knee-jerk reactions to things and yet able to step back and think about it rationally. I liked that…they didn’t belabor the situation, they just moved on after talking it out. It was a sweet romance that stuck with me long after I finished the book.

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

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Excerpt

“Sadie.”
She shook her head.
“Look at me. Please?”
It was the damn please that had her opening her eyes. He’d closed the gap so that if she so much as took a breath, they’d be touching.
So she did just that. She took a deep breath, and then their bodies were up against each other, his warm and hard. Everywhere. “What’s happening?” she whispered.
“I believe you’re deciding between kicking me in the nuts and kissing me.” One side of his mouth curved very slightly as he lifted their still joined hands above her head, against the wall.
“But that last part might just be in my dreams.”
“Yes,” she whispered.
“Yes, it’s just in my dreams?”
She meant to say yes again, she really did.
She even opened her mouth to say it, because this was insane, this incredible . . . craving she had for him. It made no sense. Less than no sense, and yet . . .
She went up on tiptoe and touched her mouth to his.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

Amazon Series Link

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Giveaway

Paperback Copy

Enter on Facebook Post HERE

Winner will be selected Saturday (1/26) by 6PM EST. Paperback provided by HarperCollins.

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About the Author

22ef435a-7671-413d-8da9-3eb4413815b2New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jill Shalvis lives in a small town in the Sierras full of quirky characters. Any resemblance to the quirky characters in her books is, um, mostly coincidental. Look for Jill’s sexy contemporary and award-winning books wherever romances are sold and click on the blog button above for a complete book list and daily blog detailing her city-girl-living-in-the-mountains adventures.

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Review: CRAVE THE HEAT by Marnee Blake

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CRAVE THE HEAT (The Smokejumpers, Book 2) by Marnee Blake

Publication Date: January 15, 2019

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Synopsis

3f424515-bffa-4e04-95de-b903ed864e06Fan the flames of desire . . .

Smoke jumper Dak Parrish has come home to Oregon to fight fires—and to mend fences with his family. He left the Warm Springs Tribal Reservation after feuding with his father. Now, with tribal lands threatened by an arsonist, Dak gets a chance to make amends by acting as a liaison between the reservation and the forest service criminal investigator—a woman who sparks a surprising and hungry flame in him.

After a trauma on the east coast, Heidi Sinclair left DC to start fresh as a criminal investigator in Oregon. But her first serious investigation provides one stubborn obstacle after another—including an arrogant firefighter she suspects knows more than he’s saying. Though she tries to battle her attraction to Dak, it’s too late. As they track down the arsonist, someone will do whatever it takes to keep old secrets buried, even if it turns everything Heidi and Dak have fought for to ashes . . .

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3.5 stars Donna

I enjoyed this story and the mystery of who the arson is. Yes, it did have some problems for me – Dak and Heidi were blatantly honest about their feelings and the corresponding reluctance with each other yet held deep secrets that didn’t mesh with that honesty. Their emotional transitions weren’t smooth either. I also thought the climax scene could have been more believable. Despite these reservations, this book was a nice read.

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

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

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About the Author

Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: COWBOY WOLF TROUBLE by Kait Ballenger

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COWBOY WOLF TROUBLE (Seven Range Shifters, Book 1) by Kait Ballenger

Publication Date: January 01, 2019 

Genre: Paranormal Romance 

Synopsis

e5b8cb1c-3b21-4acf-98cf-fa4e24cb7756Seven shifter clans call the Montana mountains home.
But a new evil will stop at nothing to tear their world apart.

For centuries, the shifters that roam Big Sky country have honored a pact to keep the peace. Even bad-boy rancher Wes Calhoun, former leader of a renegade pack, has given up his violent ways and sworn loyalty to the Grey Wolves. But his dark past keeps catching up with him…

Human rancher Naomi Evans cares only about saving the ranch that was her father’s legacy. Until a clash with Wes opens up a whole new world—a supernatural world on the verge of war—and Naomi, her ranch, and the sexy cowboy wolf stealing her heart are smack dab in the middle of it.

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Donna 4 stars

I enjoyed the start to this new shifter series. There was plenty of action, suspense and sexy romance to keep me turning the pages. Wes was the quintessential bad-boy looking for redemption, and Naomi was the strong capable woman putting up with all that came with him. There were a few times when the shifter’s actions/reactions were not consistent with being apex predators, and one or two “too stupid to live” moments for Naomi…but I still enjoyed the story and look forward to the next installment.

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

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Excerpt

Naomi came to on a jolt of energy and fear. Dreaming. She had been dreaming. Closing her eyes again, she slowed her breathing. A gentle sway moved beneath her as she lay on her stomach, her spine curved in an upside-down U. Where the hell was she? Her head throbbed and her thoughts somehow felt fuzzy. Was she on a horse? The oily scent of coat polish permeated her nose, and from the gentle sway it certainly felt like it. But she didn’t trust her disoriented head. Hadn’t she been at home just moments ago? As she attempted to push herself up, a soft tug pulled at her wrists. She shifted until her wrists were in front of her face. Loosely tied rope wrapped around her wrists. Panic flooded her. She scrambled in an attempt to sit up. Immediately, she slipped from where she’d been perched and her back hit the cold mountain ground with a hard thud.
​A nearby male voice cursed.
​The moon above bathed the normally pitch-black forest in pale moonlight. A horse’s hooves leading up into thick muscled legs stood less than a foot away from her; its coat was as dark as the night sky. Equus ferus caballus. A black American mustang, a typically free-roaming species. She scrambled to sitting despite the ache in her shoulders from the fall. It took her all of two seconds to ascertain she’d been riding passed out on the back of the horse. And this horse was decidedly not free-roaming.
​She didn’t think. Jumping to her feet, Naomi darted into the trees. She had to escape. Had to get back to her ranch. Her feet flew over the hard mountain terrain as she ran downhill. Ten yards in a rock caught the toe of her boot and she toppled into the dried autumn leaves. She started to scramble to her feet again.
​And that’s when she saw him, looming in front of her. Her captor.
​He sat on the back of the dark horse, hands clutched in the beast’s mane, those same yellow wolf eyes narrowed in her direction. Thankfully, he was clothed now.
​He rode before her as a man. But his eyes told the true story.
​“Werewolf,” the word fell from her lips.
​“Glad we’ve gotten that out of the way,” he said.
​She jumped at the deep rumble of his voice. His voice was human, but those dangerous yellow eyes…
​He dismounted the horse, and her eyes widened as she took in the full sight of him. Mangy blond hair brushed beneath his chin, wild and unkempt. He stood unnaturally still, wolf eyes ablaze through the darkness. Harsh, brutal features comprised his face. Jagged cheekbones, a bladed nose, an angry slash of a mouth, and a strong jaw lined with a thin layer of coarse blond stubble clenched tight. He watched her with relentless intent. Violent battle scars marred the skin of his chest, highlighting the bloody wound at his shoulder from where her shot grazed him, and the deep slashes of the now removed wolf trap in his forearm only served to make him appear all the deadlier.
​Wild, fierce, virile.
​Dangerous.
​In her work as a biologist, she had developed a brief, flirting fascination with large apex predators. After she’d finished her degree, she’d accepted a brief summer internship at a large cat rescue in northern Florida, where she’d worked with the rehabilitated predators up close. She’d been captivated with the languid way they moved, their ability to become so still in anticipation before they struck or lunged at lesser prey, a trait common among predators across varying species. Being so close to such strength and power had filled her with both excitement and fear. She remembered once observing a cougar crouch in anticipation of a live rabbit that had been released into its cage. The intense, deadly look in its eyes had both thrilled her and terrified her. Making her want to draw closer while also being thankful a cage had stood between them.
​She had no such protection now.
​It was the cold, ferocious intent in his golden wolf eyes that paralyzed her, that held her captive. Even in this form, he was lethal, standing well-over six feet, his body unforgiving muscle and sinew that moved with predatory fluidness.
​Few would have called him handsome. Terrifying seemed more accurate, yet she couldn’t pull her gaze away. She didn’t want to.
​He wore nothing but a pair of loose jeans covered with riding chaps. The combination hung low enough on his hips to serve as a reminder there was nothing underneath. Her eyes followed the trail of blond hair on his muscled abdomen. The material covering him seemed so precariously perched there, that it sent a wave of embarrassed heat straight to her cheeks.
​Slowly, she shifted her legs underneath herself until she crouched over the tree roots. Though she naturally loved the outdoors, having grown up on a ranch, she’d never been a very fast runner. But she had to fight, had to try. She knew these mountains. She could find her way to her ranch, even in the dark. Right? He took one step toward her, and even that small movement was predatory, not fully human.
​And she was his prey.

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

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Giveaway

 5 Copies of COWBOY WOLF TROUBLE

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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About the Author

ROMANCE AUTHOR, WORLD TRAVELER, ENGLISH PROFESSOR, AND FORMER PROFESSIONAL
BELLYDANCER, Kait Ballenger hated reading when she was a child, because she was horrible at it. Then by chance she picked up the Harry Potter series at the age of eight, fell in love with reading, and never looked back. When she realized she could tell her own stories, the deal was sealed. After stints working as a real vampire (aka a phlebotomist), a bingo caller, and a professional bellydancer, Kait finally decided that her eight-year-old self knew best: Kait’s meant to be a writer…though the jury is still out on being the next J.K Rowling.

When Kait’s not preoccupied with writing captivating paranormal romance, page-turning suspense or love scenes that make even seasoned romance readers blush, she can usually be found spending time with her family or with her nose buried in a good book. She lives in Florida with her husband and two young sons.

And yes, she can still bellydance with the best of them…

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Review & Giveaway: OUT OF TIME (The Lost Platoon) by Monica McCarty

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OUT OF TIME (The Lost Platoon, Book 3) by Monica McCarty

Publication Date: December 31, 2018

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Synopsis

623521a9-6c8c-48dc-a5af-a9dab874d06dA hunt for dangerous secrets leads to explosive chemistry in this exhilarating romantic suspense novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Off the Grid.

A team of Navy SEALs goes on a mission and disappears without a trace–they are the Lost Platoon.

With his men scattered to all corners of the globe after a disastrous secret op in Russia, Lieutenant Commander Scott Taylor is trying to find out who was responsible for leaking the information that killed half his platoon. Were it not for Natalie Andersson, the woman he had been secretly dating in the Pentagon who had warned him of the danger, he knows they would all be dead. Scott is devastated when he hears that the woman he loved and hoped to marry has been killed for helping him–until he learns that Natalie was the spy who betrayed them. But when his search to clear his name brings him face-to-face with a very-much-alive Natalie, Scott realizes that justice and vengeance might not be as clear-cut as he thought.

Natalie Andersson, or, as she was born, Natalya Petrova, has put the memories of her early childhood in Russia behind her. She never dreamed that she would be at the center of an elaborate “sleeper” espionage program. Even when she learns the truth, she refuses to spy for the country of her birth, until the Russians threaten the lives of the only family she has ever known. But Natalie is the worst spy in the history of spying, falling for her target. When her attempt at misdirection leads to irreversible consequences, she is forced to run for her life, with her lover hot on her tail.

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Donna 4 stars

I enjoyed this installment in the Lost Platoon series, even though it started out a bit slow for me. There was a lot of talking about and searching for clues to what happened in Russia. It picked up for me about a third of the way in. I like Natalie and understand why she did the things she did, I also understand her attraction to Scott. Their relationship sure needed some work, but their physical relationship was spot-on. I am glad questions were answered, and that the series is moving in a slightly different direction. Maybe then the Unit will be together and hopefully show the camaraderie that I love with group series.

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

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Excerpt

Read an Excerpt Here: Excerpt

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Buy Links

KindlePaperback

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 ✦The Lost Platoon Series by Monica McCarty✦
1. GOING DARK ➢ Review 5 Stars | Kindle
2. OFF THE GRID ➢ Review 4.5 Stars | Kindle

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Giveaway

Paperback Copy of OUT OF TIME (The Lost Platoon) by Monica McCarty.

★ENTER FACEBOOK GIVEAWAY HERE

Winner will be selected Saturday (1/12) by 6PM EST. Reading in Pajamas is Responsible for this giveaway. Paperback was provided to Reading in Pajamas by Berkley Romance.

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About the Author

Monica McCarty is the bestselling author of The Arrow, The Raider, The Hunter, the Highlander trilogy, the Campbell trilogy, and more. Her interest in the Scottish clan system began in the most unlikely of places: a comparative legal history course at Stanford Law School. After a short but enjoyable stint as an attorney, she realized that her career as a lawyer paired with her husband’s transitory life as a professional baseball player was not the best match. So she traded in her legal briefs for Scottish historical romances with sexy alpha heroes. She now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and their two children.

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Review: LIONHEART (Moonshadow Trilogy, Book 3) by Thea Harrison

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LIONHEART (Moonshadow Trilogy, Book 3) by Thea Harrison

Publication Date: October 15, 2018

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Synopsis

4F21E6EB-124B-45BD-B917-94B4A4EF5E26From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Thea Harrison comes the final story in her spellbinding Moonshadow trilogy…

King Oberon reigned over his Dark Court in Lyonesse for centuries until an assassination attempt laid him low. Now he lies unconscious in his snow-bound palace while his Power battles the enchantment that threatens to end his life.

A skilled trauma surgeon and magic user, Dr. Kathryn Shaw reigns at the top of her profession in New York. Then comes a challenge she can’t resist—she is asked to cure the incurable. Just getting close enough to try healing Oberon is a dangerous proposition. When she does reach him, he awakens too soon.

Roused from darkness by Kathryn’s presence, Oberon confronts the beautiful stranger who claims she wants to save his life. But the enchantment has frozen his emotions. How can he learn to trust her when he can’t feel anything?

Oberon’s desire is icy, devoid of all tenderness. Not only must Kathryn match wits with him, she must also fight her reaction to his touch, because there is so much more at stake than her own endangered heart.

For the Dark Court faces its most deadly peril yet. Its ancient enemy Isabeau, Queen of the Light Court, is obsessed with its annihilation, and Oberon must be brought to remember his loyalty and affection for his people.

Because if he won’t fight for them, Lyonesse itself may very well be destroyed…

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Cori 5 Stars

I loved this trilogy and LIONHEART was a favorite! This is the final book in Thea Harrison’s Moonshadow Trilogy that is set in the Elder Races World. You don’t need to read the Elder Races Series before starting this one, but I would recommend reading the Monshadow Series in order. Each book in the Moonshadow Series features a different couple and can be read as standalone though. LIONHEART is a King Oberon and Dr. Kathryn Shaw’s book. Kathryn is Dragos’s doctor in the Elder Series. LIONHEART had plenty of action, danger, passion and a unique storyline. I highly recommend this trilogy and I hope there will be a spin-off sent in this world because I love it!

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

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Buy Links

Kindle | Paperback

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✿MOONSHADOW SERIES BY THEA HARRISON✿
✦Book 1: MOONSHADOW ➢ Kindle http://amzn.to/2cZvGoH | Review 5 Stars http://wp.me/p3d0RZ-7mB
✦Book 2: SPELLBINDER ➢ Kindle http://amzn.to/2snKjWv | Review 5 Stars http://wp.me/p3d0RZ-9gY
✦Book 3: LIONHEART ➢ Kindle https://amzn.to/2NXkgDA

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Elder races series by Thea Harrison reading order
✦THE ELDER RACES BY THEA HARRISON✦
Amazon Series Link: http://amzn.to/1Ees2uY 
✦#1: DRAGON BOUND – http://amzn.to/17OAJsX
✦#2: STORM’S HEART – http://amzn.to/1fGeSNo
✦#3: SERPENT’S KISS – http://amzn.to/1fGeE8Y
✦ TRUE COLORS (Novella) – http://amzn.to/17OA9vi
✦#4: ORACLE’S MOON – http://amzn.to/17OAuhw
✦ NATURAL EVIL (Novella) – http://amzn.to/1bCUsjm
✦ DEVIL’S GATE (Novella) – http://amzn.to/H0mewH
✦ HUNTER’S SEASON (Novella) – http://amzn.to/1fGdMRF
✦#5: LORD’S FALL – http://amzn.to/1hZVCXV
✦ THE WICKED (Novella) – http://amzn.to/17id5XD
✦#6: KINKED – Review http://wp.me/p3d0RZ-NU | http://amzn.to/1bCTGmw
✦ DRAGOS TAKES A HOLIDAY – http://amzn.to/IcMCmT
✦ PIA SAVES THE DAY – http://amzn.to/1MgRXTI
✦ PEANUT GOES TO SCHOOL (Short Story) – http://amzn.to/1xTjQQU
✦#7: NIGHT’S HONOR – Review http://wp.me/p3d0RZ-1Au | http://amzn.to/1HJIoNr
✦#8: MIDNIGHT’S KISS – Review http://wp.me/p3d0RZ-2ma | http://amzn.to/1Mubm4M
✦DRAGOS GOES TO HOLLYWOOD (Novella) – http://amzn.to/1jjzW1e
✦PIA DOES HOLLYWOOD (Novella) – http://amzn.to/1MgqhC2
✦#9: SHADOW’S END – Review http://wp.me/p3d0RZ-3sP | http://amzn.to/1L7MAcn
✦LIAM TAKES MANHATTAN (Novella) – http://amzn.to/1P1EIuH

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About the author

Thea Harrison Bio A debut author at the age of nineteen, Thea Harrison had sixteen romances published under another name before she took a break to collect a couple of graduate degrees and a grown child. She’s back with the Novels of the Elder Races, a paranormal romance series, which includes Night’s Honor, Kinked, Lord’s Fall, and more.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads 

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Review: LOVING A WARRIOR by Melanie Hansen

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LOVING A WARRIOR by Melanie Hansen

Publication Date: November 26, 2018

Genre: LGBTQIA, Romance

Synopsis

2DA4F434-4283-4EF4-9F08-8E876B8BF8A8BUD/S: six months of the most intense training there is. It’s survival of the toughest, and Matt Knytych is determined to come out the other side a navy SEAL.

Distraction is life or death. And just the sight of former marine Shane Hovland is enough to shake Matt’s concentration.

Shane came to BUD/S training ready to prove himself—again. Semper Fi is forever, but he needs a new start. Not this dangerous heat with a man he barely knows.

Everything they’ve ever wanted is riding on a thin, punishing line. And they’ll have to fight for more than just each other if they want to make it through intact.

After all, the only easy day was yesterday.

This book is approximately 77,300 words

One-click with confidence. This title is part of the Carina Press Romance Promise: all the romance you’re looking for with an HEA/HFN. It’s a promise!

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Donna 5 Stars

I was swept into the world surrounding this romance by page two. I’ve never been in the military, so was surprised to flow right along with the struggle of the BUD/S, Navy SEAL training while the romance grew. I just loved Matt and Shane. They were strong warriors, driven to succeed, hot, yet they each had a vulnerability and gentleness of spirit that captured me. Each secure enough in their masculinity to lean on the other when needed. This is one story that has stuck with me long after the last page was read.

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

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Buy Links

Kindle | Amazon Series Link

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About the Author

Melanie Hansen has spent time in Texas and Florida prisons…for work. She’s been in a room with a 17-year-old mass murderer who was also one of the most soft-spoken and polite teenagers she’s ever met. After a 13-year career as a court reporter, she can tell many stories both hilarious and heartbreaking.

She grew up with an Air Force dad, and ended up marrying a Navy man. After living and working all over the country, she hopes to bring these rich and varied life experiences to her stories about people finding love amidst real-life struggles.

Melanie left the stressful world of the courtroom behind and now enjoys a rewarding career transcribing for a deaf student. She currently lives in Arizona with her husband and two sons.