Monday, May 29, 2017

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Release Date: May 30, 2017 (out now!)
Source of my copy: publisher
Series: Royal Bastards #1
Being a bastard blows. Tilla would know. Her father, Lord Kent of the Western Province, loved her as a child, but cast her aside as soon as he had trueborn children.

At sixteen, Tilla spends her days exploring long-forgotten tunnels beneath the castle with her stablehand half brother, Jax, and her nights drinking with the servants, passing out on Jax’s floor while her castle bedroom collects dust. Tilla secretly longs to sit by her father’s side, resplendent in a sparkling gown, enjoying feasts with the rest of the family. Instead, she sits with the other bastards, like Miles of House Hampstedt, an awkward scholar who’s been in love with Tilla since they were children.

Then, at a feast honoring the visiting princess Lyriana, the royal shocks everyone by choosing to sit at the Bastards’ Table. Before she knows it, Tilla is leading the sheltered princess on a late-night escapade. Along with Jax, Miles, and fellow bastard Zell, a Zitochi warrior from the north, they stumble upon a crime they were never meant to witness.

Rebellion is brewing in the west, and a brutal coup leaves Lyriana’s uncle, the Royal Archmagus, dead—with Lyriana next on the list. The group flees for their lives, relentlessly pursued by murderous mercenaries; their own parents have put a price on their heads to prevent the king and his powerful Royal Mages from discovering their treachery.

The bastards band together, realizing they alone have the power to prevent a civil war that will tear their kingdom apart—if they can warn the king in time. And if they can survive the journey...

Royal Bastards is the MOST entertaining YA book I've read this year and for that I'm giving it 
I'm not going to reiterate the plot in this review since the official [super long] synopsis does a really good job of that, so I'm going to jump right into my thoughts.

Do not go into Royal Bastards expecting an intricate high fantasy à la Brandon Sanderson or Robin McKinley. This book is very much fantasy-lite, very straightforward and it relies more on the action and plot rather than the world building or a huge cast of characters with multiple, interwoven storylines as in other high fantasy novels. I do liken this book to that movie The Knight's Tale because while it's set in a medieval fantasy setting the characters talked in like 21st century teenagers, which I didn't mind at all. I basically read this book at just the right time because I wasn't looking for a complicated fantasy novel. I wanted a book I can breeze through (since I was in a reading slump) but still capture me and hold my attention, and Royal Bastards delivered on that. 

On that note, this book would actually be a really good one to pick if you're on a reading slump because it's such a fast-paced read--really, there were no dull moments. For almost the entire novel, Tilla, Jax, Miles, Zell, and Lyriana were traveling, trying to stay under the radar because there was a bounty on their heads and to not get caught by Zell's psychotic older brother who was sent to track them and had a personal vendetta against them. There was constant danger, which meant constant action. I love when characters travel to escape danger or go on a journey in fantasy books, so I ate this book up. I would've loved a map, though, so I could have followed the characters' journey, but I was reading an advanced reader's copy so a map wasn't included. I don't know if the final copy will include a map, but hopefully it does because it's necessary!

Royal Bastards is told through Tilla's first person narrative, and, to be honest, I found her to be the least interesting character out of the five of them. Out of the five, my favorite was Zell because we were told a bit about his background and his relationship with his family that was different from the other three bastards. Lyriana was interesting too because she can do magic. The thing was, we're told about these characters and we never really get to know them at a deeper level, so they come across as made-for-TV archetypes rather than fully fleshed out characters.

However, the entertainment value of this book more than made up for everything else, because I was totally engaged in the story and I devoured this book in two days amidst my book slump. Also, I've also fallen out of love with YA this year, and this book may have renewed my enjoyment of the genre. Therefore, I couldn't give this book a lesser rating because it was just such an awesome and fun read despite everything. Again, add this book to your list of books-to-read-to-get-out-of-a-slump. Also, if you're looking for a light fantasy yet action-packed read, I highly recommend this one.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Release Date: May 16, 2017 (today!)
Source of my copy: Social Butterfly PR
Series: standalone
I was born into British aristocracy, but I’ve made my fortune in Manhattan. New York is now my kingdom.

Back in Britain my family are fighting over who’s the next Duke of Fairfax. The rules say it’s me--if I’m married. It’s not a trade-off worth making. I could never limit myself to just one woman.

Or so I thought until my world is turned upside down. Now, the only way I can save the empire I built is to inherit the title I’ve never wanted-- so I need a wife.

To take my mind off business I need a night that’s all pleasure. I need to bury myself in a stranger.

The skim of Scarlett King’s hair over my body as she bends over...

The scrape of her nails across my chest as she screams my name...

The bite of her teeth on my shoulder just as we both reach the edge...

It all helps me forget.

I just didn’t bargain on finding my one night stand across the boardroom table the next day.

She might be my latest conquest but I have a feeling Scarlett King might just conquer me.

Duke of Manhattan is my first ever read by Louise Bay and I am in love! It won't definitely be my last.

Duke of Manhattan is about Ryder Westbury, born to British aristocracy but made his fortune in New York, and Scarlett King, who moved to New York after her divorce and started a fragrance company with her best friend called Cecily Fragrance.

Ryder and his sister Darcy were raised by their grandfather, the Duke of Fairfax, after their parents basically abandoned them. When their grandfather fell and broke his hip, Ryder got called back to England and the Duke had some bad news. With the Duke old and his health quickly deteriorating, the next married male heir is line is set to inherit. This wouldn't have been a big deal since the very single (and loving it!) Ryder had no interest in inheriting, but estate would go to his jealous cousin Frederick and his horrible wife Victoria. And because the old Duke invested in Ryder's company under the estate trust, now Ryder's company is tangled up in the mess and he knows that Frederick will do anything to bring Ryder and his company down.

So, Ryder needs to marry in order to save his company and he doesn't want just any woman who'll only marry him for his title and wealth. So, he goes to the bar to mull over his problems and also at that same bar is Scarlett King who was being urged by her sister to have a good ole one night stand as a sort of cleanse from her dating and relationship hang ups ever since her husband divorced her for being "boring" and "predictable." They hook up and the sex was H-O-T dirty hot!

They meet again at a business meeting, and Ryder realized he's found a solution to his problem. Scarlett needed a lot money to pay off Cecily Fragrance's loans, and Ryder was willing to save her business and in return they marry and stay married for three years to save his.

Neither are expecting to fall in love, but well, you know...

Duke of Manhattan ticks off some of my favorite historical romance tropes, namely marriage of convenience. But, as an added treat it's set in modern times and it makes it all the more delicious. Louise Bay is also a fabulous author--I love her style of writing! So very readable and devourable. I stayed up way too late reading Duke of Manhattan, but I couldn't get enough of Ryder and Scarlett. The sizzling chemistry between them was off the charts hot! I love the mix of steamy sex, swoon-y heartfelt moments, and humor. 

I am so excited to read more books by Louise Bay. One-click Duke of Manhattan for a fun, sexy, entertaining rom-com read that will have you turning up your AC. Highly recommended!

About the Author
USA Today bestselling author, Louise Bay writes sexy, contemporary romance novels - the kind she likes to read. Her books include the novels Faithful and Hopeful and the novella series' The Empire State Series, What the Lightning Sees and Calling Me. The novels and together the series are stand-alone although there are some overlapping characters.

Ruined by romantic mini-series of the eighties, Louise loves all things romantic. There's not enough of it in real life so she disappears into the fictional worlds in books and films.

Louise loves the rain, the West Wing, London, days when she doesn't have to wear make-up, being on her own, being with friends, elephants and champagne.

She loves to hear from readers so get in touch!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Hi everyone,
Captain by Lauren Rowe is out today! One of my favorite reads of 2016 is Ball Peen Hammer so I was very excited to pick up Captain, which focuses on Keane's older brother Ryan. Read on for my thoughts about Captain and for more info about the book.

Release Date: May 15, 2017 (today!)
Source of my copy: Give Me Books
Series: standalone
It wasn’t the way this kind of story was supposed to go . . .
Insta-love isn’t supposed to turn into insta-hate.

But that’s exactly what happened when the hot-as-hell dreamboat I met in a bar turned out to be a lying, cheating scumbag-player-douche looking for nothing but a little side action. Jerk.

And he has the nerve to call me a liar and a “sociopath”? Assh*le.

And now, three months later, through a mind-blowing series of events I couldn’t have predicted in a million years, it turns out my boss is marrying his sister in Hawaii and I’ve got to play nice with him for an entire freaking week.

Okay, sure, I’ll put on a happy face this week and act like I’ve never even met the jerk before--did I mention his sister is marrying my boss?--but that doesn’t mean I’ll like it. And it certainly doesn’t mean I’ll stop secretly hating the cocky bastard’s guts.

Because I do.
I hate him.
I really do.

I just wish my brain would explain the situation to my body . . . because every time he flashes that panty-melting smile at me, it takes all my self-restraint not to jump the bastard’s hot-as-f*ck bones.

Having just broken up with a crazy, bunny-boiling loon of a girl, Ryan goes to a bar to meet his friends only to meet "Samantha." Samantha is actually Tessa who was at the same bar trying get her flirt on after nine months of being a hermit after her break up with her cheating boyfriend. At the urging of her best friend, she's dressed up as a stewardess and using a fake name, Samantha. Tessa and Ryan had an instant connection, until it was interrupted by Ryan's crazy ex-girlfriend, Olivia, who thought they were still together.

After that Ryan couldn't stop thinking about a sexy stewardess named Samantha he met at a bar. He even got his soon-to-be brother-in-law's friend to use his hacking skill to track her down but to no avail. Tessa herself couldn't forget about the sexy man named Ryan she met at a bar, but she thinks he's a lying, cheating douche having met and getting cursed at that night by Olivia who made the impression that Ryan is cheating on his girlfriend.

These two thought seeing each other again is a lost cause in a city of over 3 million people until they come face to face at Ryan's sister's destination wedding in Hawaii. And Ryan was in for a huge surprise when he found out that Samantha the sexy stewardess he couldn't stop thinking about and have been obsessively looking for the last three months was none other than his soon-to-be brother-in-law's personal assistant named Tessa--did he just fall for a bunny-boiling loon again?

Captain was such a fun, hilarious read. Ryan's nickname is Captain Morgan, and there's a hilarious running analogy of Captain Ahab's hunt for his elusive whale with "Samantha" being Captain Morgan's whale. I find I enjoy Lauren Rowe's brand of humor. I also loved spending time with the Morgan clan and their friends that I met in Ball Peen Hammer. I love the dynamics between each of the Morgan siblings, their parents, their significant others and their friends--they are one big crazy, nickname giving, smack-talking family. OMG, their crazy nicknames for each other were awesome and I can relate because I'm notorious for giving my siblings (and sometimes parents if I can get away with it) crazy, weird nicknames all in good fun.  

Ryan and Tessa were wonderful on their own and when together their chemistry sizzles. I loved how they went from inta-love to hate sex (make that very steamy hate sex) to a swoony HEA. Ryan is a real estate broker whose real dream is to own his own bar and Tessa is all about the details, practical, think-before-she-acts, and a self-described perfectionist. I just love the two of them together.

I also enjoyed the fact that most of the book is set where I live so I was able to recognize place names and the activities they did.

If you've read Ball Peen Hammer like I have, Captain is set around the time of Kat and Josh's wedding and I want to say a several months before BPH. But, while Captain is connected with Lauren Rowe's other books it can be read as a standalone. 

Captain was an all-around good time! Hilarious, fun, and sexy--I can't wait to read more by Lauren Rowe. Here' hoping she'll also write more books featuring the Morgan clan and their friends. I like that she doesn't stick to a strict timeline and can revisit couples we've already met or mentioned and she can write a full story about them. I'm definitely looking forward to more books featuring the last two Morgan brothers.

I recommend you pick up Captain if you're looking for a lighthearted, hilarious yet steamy read.

About the Author
USA Today and internationally bestselling author Lauren Rowe lives in San Diego, California, where, in addition to writing books, she performs with her dance/party band at events all over Southern California, writes songs, takes embarrassing snapshots of her ever-patient Boston terrier, Buster, spends time with her wonderful family, and narrates audiobooks. Much to Lauren’s thrill, her books have been translated all over the world in multiple languages and hit multiple domestic and international bestseller lists. With enticing characters, enthralling situations and a general love of romantic fiction, Lauren has created a world of her own, full of wit and sensual desire.

Happy reading,

Hi everyone,
I hope everyone had a most wonderful weekend Mother's Day weekend. I did, spending it with my mom and the rest of my family.

I am kicking off the week with an awesome cover reveal for My Best Friend's Ex by Meghan Quinn.

When I found an eviction notice taped on my apartment door, I had two options: find a comfortable cardboard box to call home, or move in with Tucker Jameson.

Seeing that cardboard makes me feel itchy, I chose the latter. Which shouldn't be that big of a deal Tucker is one of my good friends. And because he's still pining after his ex-girlfriend and I'm trying to finish my nursing degree, there is nothing to worry about in the romance department, making my last semester an easy one to conquer.
Boy, was I wrong.

Rules are set, dinners are made, conversations are had, and a shirtless, swoony roommate walks around in nothing but a pair of black briefs, ruining me for every other man.

Before I know it, I turn into a panting, lust-filled woman begging for Tucker to kiss me, touch me, and show me exactly what is hiding under those briefs.

But with great orgasms, comes great consequences.

Tucker might be my friend and roommate but he’s also my best friend's ex-boyfriend, making him completely off-limits. At least that's what my brain is telling me, my heart is speaking an entirely different language.
Publication Date: June 1, 2017

About the Author
Meghan Quinn

Born in New York and raised in Southern California, Meghan has grown into a sassy, peanut butter eating, blonde haired swearing, animal hoarding lady. She is known to bust out and dance if “It’s Raining Men” starts beating through the air and heaven forbid you get a margarita in her, protect your legs because they may be humped.

Once she started commuting for an hour and twenty minutes every day to work for three years, she began to have conversations play in her head, real life, deep male voices and dainty lady coos kind of conversations. Perturbed and confused, she decided to either see a therapist about the hot and steamy voices running through her head or start writing them down. She decided to go with the cheaper option and started writing… enter her first novel, Caught Looking.

​Now you can find the spicy, most definitely on the border of lunacy, kind of crazy lady residing in Colorado with the love of her life and her five, furry four legged children, hiking a trail or hiding behind shelves at grocery stores, wondering what kind of lube the nervous stranger will bring home to his wife. Oh and she loves a good boob squeeze!

Happy reading,

Monday, May 8, 2017

The Traitor's Kiss by Erin Beaty | Fancast

Monday, May 8, 2017 with

Hi everyone,
I am so excited to be part of The Traitor's Kiss blog tour. It's the cover absolutely gorgeous?! I basically fell in love with the cover (I have a thing for combining delicate and hard so the dagger/roses combo spoke to me) before really knowing what it's about. I am currently reading it and so far the I am really liking it--it's kinda giving me a The Storyspinner vibe, if you've read that fantasy duology by Becky Wallace (my review here if you've never heard of The Storyspinner--I really liked it).

Anyway, I'm sharing my fancast picks for some of the characters from The Traitor's Kiss.

An obstinate girl who will not be married.
A soldier desperate to prove himself.
A kingdom on the brink of war.

With a sharp tongue and an unruly temper, Sage Fowler is not what they’d call a lady―which is perfectly fine with her. Deemed unfit for marriage, Sage is apprenticed to a matchmaker and tasked with wrangling other young ladies to be married off for political alliances. She spies on the girls―and on the soldiers escorting them.

As the girls' military escort senses a political uprising, Sage is recruited by a handsome soldier to infiltrate the enemy ranks. The more she discovers as a spy, the less certain she becomes about whom to trust―and Sage becomes caught in a dangerous balancing act that will determine the fate of her kingdom.

Okay, here's the thing: I don't watch a lot of currently running TV shows or new movies so I'm not familiar with a lot of the popular young actors and actresses. I basically watch random movies on Netflix and occasionally binge on Netflix shows. I love fancast posts though so I thought I'd take a stab at doing one for The Traitor's Kiss. Also, just a little caveat, I don't always go with the books description when picking actors or actress. I just go with what feels right to me.

Here we go...
Sage Fowler
Saoirse Ronan pic via Tumblr
The actress the quickly came to mind for Sage is a slightly younger Saoirse Ronan. She's a very versatile actress and can play obstinate yet very observant Sage with her freckles and tomboyish ways.

Mistress Darnessa Rodelle
via Saint Heron
Mistress Rodelle is this very intimidating and highly respected matchmaker. Octavia Spencer is the perfect Mistress Rodelle.

Captain Alexander Quinn
via Pinterest
Okay, Scott Eastwood might be too old to play 21-year old Captain Quinn, he is so damn sexy. I love the scruff--imagine him with the scruff, slightly dirty from doing his duties, in Captain Quinn's black jacket sitting atop a horse commanding his men. **swoon**

Sergeant Ash Carter
via Pinterest
This is Josh Whitehouse and he's gonna be in Season 3 of Poldark (I'm a HUGE Poldark fangirl just FYI). I just pictured Ash (the king's bastard son who is careful not to upstage his half-brother who is the heir to the throne and tries to stay in the background) looking like him.

Lady Clare
via Pinterest
The gorgeous Yara Shahidi (from Black-ish) as Lady Clare who was Sage's roommate and friend. It doesn't show in this picture but she also has beautiful curls.

Lady Broadmoor (Sage's Aunt)
via Zimbio
Constance Wu (love her in Fresh Off the Boat!) as Aunt Braelaura

Lord Broadmoor (Sage's Uncle)
via Forbes India
Indian actor Hrithik Roshan as Uncle William

Since I'm currently reading the book I haven't met some of the characters yet, or they haven't really made an impression on me yet. I may update as I continue reading.

My secret message: "Was copying notes into bound ledger"

About the author
Erin Beaty was born and raised in Indianapolis, Indiana, which means she can't drive a tractor, but she won't eat veggies that come from a can. She graduated from the US Naval Academy with a degree in rocket science and somehow always ended up writing her study group's lab reports. After serving in the fleet as a weapons officer and a leadership instructor, she resigned to pursue her side hobby of populating the Church of Rome. It still amazes her when other people want to hear the stories that come out of her head.

She and her husband have five children, two cats, and a vegetable garden and live wherever the navy tells them to go.

Check out the other previous stops in the blog tour.

20-Apr: bookaddictsguide -Scented Candle
22-Apr: booknerdsacrossamerica - List of Favorite Literary Female Spies
24-Apr: mundiemoms - Guest Post: Top 10 Things All Spies Need
25-Apr: bookiemoji - Top 5 Reasons to read The Traitor's Kiss
26-Apr: fiktshun - Guest Post: Favorite & Most Challenging Scene to Write (and Why)
27-Apr: foreveryoungadult - Guest Post: YA "matchmaker"
28-Apr: yabookscentral Guest Post: What gave you the inspiration for this book?
29-Apr: bookbriefs Guest Post: Top 5 Things You Didn't Know about Sage & Mouse
30-Apr: trippingoverbooks - Mood Board
1-May: darkfaerietales - Guest Post: What's the most daring thing you would do for a mission?
2-May: whatsarahread - Mood Board
3-May: booklovingnut - Playlist
5-May: quitethenovelidea - Alternate Cover
6-May: herestohappyendings - Q&A
7-May: brooke-reports Sage Character Interview
9-May: YOU ARE HERE!! Fancast

Happy reading,

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Publisher: Loveswept
Release Date: May 2, 2017 (out now!)
Source of my copy: Inkslinger/publisher
Series: Love Hurts #1
Valentine French may be the sassiest dating columnist in New York City, but the abundance of metrosexuals in her adopted metropolis is seriously cramping her style. Where are the beefy all-American boys? Hoping to find some inspiration, Val heads to Alaska, where the men outnumber the women fifteen to one and wrestle grizzly bears for sport. Or so she can only imagine. Suddenly the most eligible bachelorette in a town full of horny lumberjacks, Val is writing her best columns ever. But if she doesn’t get her nose out of her laptop, she just might miss out on Mr. Right.

Logan Burke is the sheriff of the little podunk town that Val finds so charmingly backward. He’s not that different from the guys she’s using for her little experiment; it’s just that one date would never be enough for Logan. As he listens to Val complain about love over beers in the local tavern, he realizes that she can’t see the forest for the trees. Because if she would ever give up her Prada bags and fourteen-dollar martinis, Logan would give her the only luxury that matters: his heart.

Sex in the Sticks is my first book by Sawyer Bennett and why wasn't I told how awesome of a romance writer she is?! Because I would've read her a lot sooner. I enjoyed Sex in the Stick immensely!

As soon as I met Valentine French in the prologue (and all the more in the first chapter) the first thing that popped in my head is Carrie Bradshaw from Sex in the City. Val is stylish, fabulous, a local celebrity thanks to her popular dating and sex blog, and wealthy on her own (her family is old money and they're always side-eyeing her for writing a dating and sex blog). However, the New York dating scene have been kind of a dud lately with Val ending up on dates with the same type of metrosexual guy.

When her cousin and best friend Jeremy suggested she travel to Alaska where there are fifteen men to one woman, Valentine jumped at the idea. She packed her bags and her tiny dog Sassy and headed for the Alaskan Wilderness. Getting off the ferry, one of the first people she met was rugged, sexy, very manly mountain man Logan Burke (just the kind of man she's looking for for her blog!), the chief of police for the tiny town of East Merritt, Alaska.

Val came off a bit shallow at first, the pampered New Yorker, but I ended up really, really liking her. She's instantly popular with the men of East Merritt, including Logan, but they don't know about her blog. Soon, she's going on dates and have all these new material to write about.  Logan kept his attraction to her to himself, and Val in turn was very attracted to Logan, but she's never sure what he felt about her. That is until he ends up rescuing her from the woods and then all bets are off with these two. I love the spark and the white hot chemistry between them and the sex is H.O.T.! And then, of course, Logan finds out about Val's blog and unsurprisingly he wasn't very happy, especially after he read what she wrote about him.

Sex in the Sticks was just a very well-written, super fun, SUPER steamy read that made me swoon and smile. I love small-town romances set in the boonies, and this one very much delivered. I love Val and Logan and the other secondary characters from East Merritt as well. This book was just an all-around good time. Also, this was a great introduction to Sawyer Bennett, and I am planning on reading her other books very, very soon. I highly recommend you pick up Sex in the Sticks.

About the Author
Author Sawyer Bennett
Since the release of her debut contemporary romance novel, Off Sides, in January 2013, Sawyer Bennett has released more than 30 books and has been featured on both the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists on multiple occasions. 

A reformed trial lawyer from North Carolina, Sawyer uses real life experience to create relatable, sexy stories that appeal to a wide array of readers. From new adult to erotic contemporary romance, Sawyer writes something for just about everyone.

Sawyer likes her Bloody Marys strong, her martinis dirty, and her heroes a combination of the two. When not bringing fictional romance to life, Sawyer is a chauffeur, stylist, chef, maid, and personal assistant to a very active toddler, as well as full-time servant to two adorably naughty dogs. She believes in the good of others, and that a bad day can be cured with a great work-out, cake, or a combination of the two.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Publisher: Random House BFYR
Release Date: May 2, 2017 (out now!)
Source of my copy: publisher
Series: 5 Worlds #1
The Five Worlds are on the brink of extinction unless five ancient and mysterious beacons are lit. When war erupts, three unlikely heroes will discover there's more to themselves and more to their worlds than meets the eye...

The clumsiest student at the Sand Dancer Academy, Oona Lee is a fighter with a destiny bigger than she could ever imagine.

A boy from the poorest slums, An Tzu has a surprising gift and a knack for getting out of sticky situations.

Star athlete Jax Amboy is beloved by an entire galaxy, but what good is that when he has no real friends?

When these three kids are forced to team up on an epic quest, it will take not one, not two, but 5 WORLDS to contain all the magic and adventure!

The Sand Warrior is the first book in the 5 Worlds series, and going in I had very high expectations. Maybe too high? But, I couldn't help it! It's being promoted as Star Wars meets Avatar: The Last Airbender and some of my favorite graphic novelists (Kazu Kibuishi, Noelle Stevenson) wrote blurbs for it.

The whole Star Wars meets Avatar: The Last Airbender I see that, but The Sand Warrior didn't quite hit that epicness Star Wars and Avatar has. However, I do believe that the series could in future installments, not just with this book.

Hands down, my favorite part of The Sand Warrior is the art. I got an advanced reader's copy so most of the art in it is black and white, but the one chapter where everything was in color was beautiful--actually, even though the other pages were black and white the gorgeous art still shone through. The art reminds me a little bit of Kazu Kibuishi's art in his Amulet series, but softer and less angled. Anyway, the art is GORGEOUS and consistent throughout the book and the style and color really matches the story and characters.

Via 5 Worlds on Tumblr. Click on the image to go to the website to preview more of the art. 
My biggest issue with The Sand Warrior is the story itself. The first third of the story was very confusing. We were just thrown into the world and I naturally scrambled to try to figure things out and everything weren't gelling. Then, we got more information bit by bit as the story progressed and by the end I have a general idea of the world and all the different people and cultures. I did like the combination of ancient magic, plant magic, and futuristic technology the 5 Worlds have going on.

Another thing that knocked down my rating for this book was the fact that problems the characters run across sometimes were solved just a little too easily, or a character could spend pages denying something and then quickly does a 180 within a couple panels. This is especially true for Oona's character, which moved the plot along but it also left me skeptical.  

As for the characters, I really enjoyed the main trio--Oona, An Tzu, and Jax Amboy. They all have very interesting backstories, and it was strongly hinted that there's more about them and their past that even the characters themselves don't know about and I am very interested in finding out more. There was even a twist about Jax that I didn't guess until the reveal, which was great because I was able to figure out most of the plot twists way before they became super obvious.

Overall, The Sand Warrior was a fun, quick read. It didn't quite live up to my admittedly high expectations, but I was entertained by it and I absolutely LOVED the art. I strongly believe that the future books will be so much more epic now that much of the world has been introduced. 

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Release Date: May 2, 2017 (today!)
Source of my copy: L. Woods PR
Series: standalone
I'm known for being formal. Meticulous. Professional.

So you’d never suspect I spend my nights photographing my impressive junk for a NSFW blog. Don’t roll your eyes. I’m not bragging. I have millions of followers who’ll tell you they live for my posts.

I’m like a superhero, saving humanity one dick pic at a time.

Except leading a double life means I need someone to help me protect my anonymity, so that no one, especially my family, ever discovers my online celebrity.

When I call one of the most respected law firms in town, I expect quality legal advice and confidentiality. Not a sinfully sexy attorney whose dangerous curves and soul-piercing gray eyes make me want to personally demonstrate my particular skill set.

I shouldn’t be tempted.

Especially when she knows all of my best-kept secrets. But everyone has a breaking point. And I’ve met mine.

How did a handsome, glasses wearing, wealthy man from a  wealthy and prominent Portland family end up running a dick blog called All About the D? For Josh Cartwright it all started as a dare from his best friend, but lo and behold his blog blew up, getting millions of hits and comments every time he posts a new NSFW picture. Soon, companies that specializes in sex toys and dildo are contacting him. Despite his apprehension about word getting out about his secret "hobby," he knew he needed an attorney to help him with the deals and contracts and all the legalese.

So, he contacts Evelyn "Evie" Mills, a new associate at the prestigious law firm. Landing a Cartwright as a client would go a long way for Evie who is trying to get her footing at her law firm. She just has to convince the conservative partners at her very traditional law firm to take on someone who runs a dick blog. The moment Evie and Josh meet, there was an instant attraction between them, but with Josh potentially being her client Evie knew they cannot act on their attraction and just remain as friends... until they can, because the partners decided not to represent Josh.

Then, Josh somehow ended up charming the partners and they had a change of heart, which meant that Evie is now truly is his attorney and they couldn't be together despite the smoldering attraction between them that may be turning into something more. It doesn't help that they are spending more time together as client and attorney...

When I heard All About the D is about a sexy dick blogger, I was like sign me up! I've been really into male stripper romance lately and I thought All About the D is in a similar vein. Well, not really. Josh runs a dick blog, albeit a "classy" one since he like to superimpose his dick against city backdrops and city skylines, because he is an architect and a very successful one. Of course, the dick blog is secondary and the focus is really on how Josh and Evie navigate their professional and personal relationship with each other, which didn't really bring anything new to what I've read in the past with characters in similar situations. Evie and Josh's story didn't feel fresh.

I especially liked Josh's character. He's the secret deviant in his family, which included a brother who is running for senate and his parents are the crème de la crème of the Portland socialites. He knows if his secret blog is made public, it will be huge scandal not only for him but his entire family. Throughout the book, it was implied that if Josh's family ever finds out about his dick blog, they'd cut him off and would never speak to him again. But, the thing was, when his family learned about his blog their reaction wasn't as explosive as I thought it was going to be.

Evie herself was a little frustrating--she struggled with either going forward with her relationship with Josh at the detriment of her career, or keeping things platonic with him. So, she's pushing him away only to pulls him back in and I'm not a fan of that kind of drama.

There were standout parts that had me giggling, like when Josh had to make a mold of his dick and he couldn't get it hard enough so he kept screwing it up. Then, there's the classic scene of Evie's lovable but overexcited dog pulling her in a muddy puddle and Josh happened to just be there to lend his shirt. Of course, there's Josh's best friend, Drew, the lovable screw-up slob with the big beer belly, the total opposite of neat and meticulous Josh. Drew added some comedic relief to the story.

I enjoyed All About the D overall. It wasn't a bad book, but it didn't live up to my expectations and it was missing... something to make it really stand-out. However, the sex scenes were very steamy, there were some swoon-worthy moments, and overall a fun read.

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About the Authors
Leslie McAdam is a California girl who loves romance, Little Dude, and well-defined abs. She lives in a drafty old farmhouse on a small orange tree farm in Southern California with her husband and two small children. Leslie always encourages her kids to be themselves – even if it means letting her daughter wear leopard print from head to toe. An avid reader from a young age, she will always trade watching TV for reading a book, unless it’s Top Gear. Or football. Leslie is employed by day but spends her nights writing about the men you fantasize about. She’s unapologetically sarcastic and notoriously terrible at comma placement (that’s what editors are for!). Always up for a laugh, Leslie tries to see humor in all things. When she’s not in the writing cave you’ll find her fangirling over Beck, camping with her family, or mixing up oil paints to depict her love of outdoors on canvas.

Lex Martin is the USA Today bestselling author of Shameless and The Dearest Series. She writes contemporary romances, the sexy kind with lotsa angst, a whole lotta kissing, and the hot happily ever afters. When she's not writing, she lives a parallel life as an English teacher. She loves printing black and white photos, listening to music on vinyl, and getting lost in a great book. Bitten by wanderlust, she's lived all over the country but currently resides in the City of Angels with her husband and twin daughters.