Review – Jock by CM Foss

Title: Jock
Author: CM Foss
Release Date: Nov 2, 2015
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CLICHES

She can’t stand them.

Hates them.

Refuses to be one.

But…

Tessa Brooks is strong-willed, sassy, and determined, on the brink of dominating in the testosterone-fueled sport of horse racing. She’s spent her life avoiding the norm, staying true to herself to achieve her ultimate goals.Her relationship with Jace Hitchen, her brother’s best friend, just might be the biggest cliche of all. Over the years, he’s been her protector, her annoyance, her confidante, her crush. But giving in to what she’s really wanted for the last ten years could be the very thing that destroys everything she’s worked for and wanted. Can Tessa achieve her dreams for the future, but still hold on to the past?

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BFF K’s Review

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I love the start of this book! You understand from the very beginning the intense desire that Jace has to protect Tessa. Over the years, you see that protection morph from the instinct of a friend/brother to to the instinct of a friend/lover.

I love the middle of this book. The life of a jockey is hard, there is emotion and tension watching Tessa and Jace navigate the lifestyle and a relationship. Tessa is coming into her own, discovering her passion for racing and learning how to balance the demands of this daunting profession. Jace is learning how to balance being Tessa’s protector and being her partner.

I love the end of this book. There is a fulfilling happily ever after for Jace and Tessa that demonstrates how far they have come, but also their commitment to one another. Jock was a heartwarming, fast-paced, satisfying read. It was also my first book by CM Foss, but I know it won’t be my last!

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An advance copy was received in exchange for an honest review.

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Book Trailer

About the Author

CM Foss is a hopeless romantic with a love for the written word. When she was little, her mom would ration her books so she wouldn’t go through them too quickly. It didn’t matter, she would just re-read. She’s always been an avid equestrian, competing in the top levels of Three Day Eventing by age seventeen. CM now resides in Northern Virginia with her husband and kids where they own and operate their own equestrian business, as well as raising grass-fed, sustainable meats. She doesn’t have this thing people call “free time”, but she does spend a weird amount of time writing, reading, playing with her kids, milking goats, and drinking wine, while avoiding bananas at all costs. Other books by CM Foss include Shiver, Swoon, and City Beautiful.

New Release – Drawn Through You by Sarina Rhoads

It’s release day for Drawn Through You by Sarina Rhoads! We are so excited to share this sexy billionaire romance with a twist with you!! Sarina is sharing an excerpt and fantastic giveaway, so check it out! BFF K will have a review coming next week!

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What if the brooding billionaire wore pencil skirts and Louboutins? What if the impressionable intern was a small-town furniture maker with boyish charm?

Cole Jacobson always thought he would take after his father and pursue his dreams. But when the family business falters and he’s forced to accept his uncle’s help, Cole is summoned to the big city for a job he never wanted.

Priorities become obscured when Cole finds himself working for Shaun Wright, the strong, intimidating, and ruthlessly attractive business partner at his uncle’s contracting firm. Forced to either sacrifice his hard-won integrity or leave behind the one thing that brings him true happiness, Cole must make a decision that could cost him both. A decision only complicated by the sexy, inscrutable woman he can’t stop thinking about. A woman who just might be as intrigued as he is to cross professional boundaries.

A provocative, trope-twisting romance, Sarina Rhoads’s Drawn Through You finally puts the heroine on the other side of the desk.

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Excerpt

They stepped onto the elevator, just the two of them, but she pressed twelve instead of six. Were they back at square one, where she retreated to her office in the sky instead of dealing with her feelings head on? Too bad for her, Cole thought to himself. There was too much at stake for him. More than she could even fathom. He needed to make a decision about his uncle’s ultimatum, and the clock was running out. The fate of his father’s business still hung in the balance, dependent upon his next move. Shaun’d basically said she was done with Olivia, and the way she had stared at him when she didn’t think he’d notice had set his body ablaze. Frustrated, rejected, and somewhat inebriated, Cole slammed his fist against the emergency stop button and the car jerked to a halt.

“What the–?” Shaun exclaimed as the scream of the buzzer bounced around the four walls. Cole stepped toward her while she inched back. “Are you drunk?”

He attempted to shake off the beer fog slowly swallowing his brain whole. “Maybe.” He would let Shaun make up his mind. If she turned him down right here, right now, then he’d be free and clear. He’d report back to Robert that she wasn’t interested and that he’d need to employ another stud-for-hire. But what if she didn’t? Cole thought as he ceased his forward progression.

Not an inch of space remained between them. He searched her eyes, ears honed in on her rapid breathing, which he could hear even over the thundering of his own pulse and the buzzing of the elevator. “In the stairwell, you saw me, didn’t you? You saw me before I dropped my file, and you liked it.” He didn’t know where the sudden surge of courage had come from. The beer? The shitty position his uncle had cornered him into? Shaun continued to stare in silence. “So is it just women for you now, Shaun? Is that why you can’t address the idea of going out with me?”

“I… We…” She flattened her palms against his chest, but didn’t push him away. A sign to keep going? He half wondered if she could feel the thump of his heart against his ribcage or the spike in his body temperature. She was so beautiful this close. He’d failed to notice the light dusting of freckles across the bridge of her nose or the tiny scar above her left eyebrow until now. The scent of her perfume acted as a hallucinogen when mixed with the glorious vision before him. He leaned down, mouth almost brushing over hers.

“Shaun,” he breathed.

With a second jerk, the elevator started moving again. Cole glanced down, finding Shaun’s finger on the emergency button. Her action was answer enough. He backed away to the opposite side of the car and poked at the button for six.

When the car stopped, he glanced over his shoulder at her. She hadn’t moved. Didn’t that make him feel even more like an asshole.

“Don’t worry, Ms. Wright. It’s just business between you and me from now on. I promise.” He stepped out, leaving Shaun to continue her ascent to the twelfth floor alone. He was tired of looking like a world-class idiot, hard up on his boss and her mind-scrambling skirts. He’d really thought something had passed between them at lunch, but no. Maybe the pressure from his uncle was starting to fuck with his brain.

“Mr. Jacobson.”

Cole stopped and turned around. Shaun stood just outside of the elevator, one arm stretched out to keep the doors from closing. Her expression gave nothing away, but he could see her swallow, as if she were preparing herself for something. She cleared her throat and proceeded in a voice that lacked the confidence he’d come to associate with her.

“I’m not sure that will be enough.” Without another word, she stepped back into the elevator and disappeared.

About the Author

Sarina Rhoads photoMaintaining a suburban orbit of NYC all her life, Sarina Rhoads ran the gamut of odd jobs in pursuit of a one true passion. Once exposed to a world of creative storytelling through online writing groups, she fell completely in love. Now she finds pleasure in penning both contemporary and paranormal romance, possessing notebooks chock full of ideas only waiting to be released.

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Review – Irresistibly Yours by Lauren Layne

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IRRESISTIBLY YOURS
Oxford #1
Lauren Layne
Releasing Oct 6th, 2015
Loveswept

Meet the men of Oxford magazine! In the first captivating spin-off of Lauren Layne’s Sex, Love & Stiletto series, a not-so-friendly battle of the sexes turns into a scorching office romance.

Hotshot sports editor Cole Sharpe has been freelancing for Oxford for years, so when he hears about a staff position opening up, he figures he’s got the inside track. Then his boss drops a bombshell: Cole has competition. Female competition, in the form of a fresh-faced tomboy who can hang with the dudes—and write circles around them, too. Cole usually likes his women flirty and curvy, but he takes a special interest in his skinny, sassy rival, if only to keep an eye on her. And soon, he can’t take his eyes off her.

Penelope Pope knows all too well that she comes off as just one of the guys. Since she’s learned that wanting more usually leads to disappointment, Penelope’s resigned to sitting on the sidelines when it comes to love. So why does Cole make her want to get back in the game? The man is as arrogant as he is handsome. He probably sees her as nothing more than a barrier to his dream job. But when an unexpected kiss turns into a night of irresistible passion, Penelope has to figure out whether they’re just fooling around—or starting something real.

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BFF K’s Review

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Irresistible!  This is a fantastic, fast-paced, super-sweet romance. All of the great elements of a romance novel are packed into one great story. You have a confident but caring hero who isn’t looking for love, but puts his philandering past to rest when he meets the perfect woman for him. And, of course, the perfect woman is cool! She’s hard working, understanding, and doesn’t have any idea how stunning she is.

So the storyline is fairly predictable, but there are a couple of interesting, character-driven, plot twists that will keep you turning the pages. The dialogue and banter are quick and fun. The cast of supporting characters is deep and rich and adds so much to the overall story.

The guys are all manly and model-good-looking, but they also gossip like women and love their partners fiercely. The women are beautiful and kind and look out for one another while having kick-a$% careers and keeping their men in line. I know it’s all too good to be true, but this is why I LOVE to LOVE books about LOVE!

If you’re looking for a fun read with great characters, a unique sports-news setting, and plenty of distracting, delightful storylines, you definitely need to pick up Irresistibly Yours. The only warning I have is that this book (although it is a quality stand-alone) will make you want to read the rest of the books coming in the Oxford Series AND the entire Stilettos Series, all by Lauren Layne!

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An ARC was received in exchange for an honest review.

Excerpt

But before Cole could make the call on whether or not to die curious about that damn notebook or risk rejection by Tiny Brunette, his best friend and co-worker was holding a fresh beer in front of his face.

“You look like you need it,” Lincoln Mathis said, sipping the foam off his own beer.

“How would you know?” Cole said. “You’ve been chatting up Jonas Leroy’s wife for the better part of four innings.”

“Had to,” Lincoln said with a little shrug. “She was bored. Her husband’s completely preoccupied with whatever’s going on with that ball down there.”

“As he should be at a baseball game,” Cole said pointedly.

Cole didn’t know why he bothered. His friend was already back on his cellphone, not the least bit interested in the game.

Lincoln Mathis looked like the type of man who should enjoy sports: tall, athletic, well muscled from their early-morning gym sessions. Carelessly styled black hair and friendly blue eyes that screamed guy’s guy just as loudly as they did ladies’ man.

But, much to Cole’s dismay, he’d never been able to get his friend to invest more than a passing interest in sports—any sport. Lincoln was always happy to tag along to a game when booze and women were involved, but ask him who he thought this year’s MVP would be, and he’d say Babe Ruth without the smallest hint of irony.

Still, tonight, Cole couldn’t exactly lecture Lincoln for not paying attention when he himself was having a hell of a time keeping track of the score.

Once more, his eyes found Tiny Brunette, who was . . . yep. Writing in her notebook.

“Hey, Sharpe. Do you know where they keep a fire extinguisher in here?” Lincoln asked, looking around the luxury suite of Yankee Stadium.

Cole tore his gaze away from the woman and her damn notebook. “What for?”

“If you stare at that girl any harder, she’s going to burst into flames,” Lincoln said, jerking his chin at Tiny Brunette.

“I wasn’t staring.”

“Don’t insult our bromance,” Lincoln said cheerfully.

“Keep running your mouth and we won’t have a bromance.” Cole forced himself not to look at the woman again.

“Hey, if you’ve got a crush on the wee lass, you can tell me,” Lincoln said, taking another sip of beer.

“I don’t have a crush. And wee lass? Really? You’re Scottish now?”

“Sometimes. Chicks dig the brogue. You should try it on your girl over there.”

“She’s not my girl. She’s just . . .” Interesting, Cole finished silently.

“Good,” Lincoln said, clapping him on the shoulder. “So you won’t mind that she left.”

Cole’s eyes flew to the seat where the woman was sitting, annoyed to see that his friend was right. She was gone.

“It’s just as well,” Lincoln said. “We have bigger things to focus on. Say, like how we’re going to annihilate the bastard who’s out for your job.”

“It’s not my job,” Cole said, carefully keeping the tinge of bitterness out of his tone.

“Not yet,” Lincoln said. “But it will be. Taking your competition out of the picture is the only reason I’m at this barbarian event.”

“Remind me never to take you to a hockey game,” Cole muttered.

Still, he appreciated his friend’s loyalty. And Lincoln was right. Tonight wasn’t about petite female baseball fans and their damn notebooks.

Tonight was about Cole’s professional future.

The key to that future? Oxford magazine.

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About the Author

 

Lauren Layne is a USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance. Prior to becoming an author, Lauren worked in e-commerce and web-marketing. In 2011, she and her husband moved from Seattle to New York City, where Lauren decided to pursue a full-time writing career. It took six months to get her first book deal (despite ardent assurances to her husband that it would only take three). Since then, Lauren’s gone on to publish ten books, including the bestselling Stiletto series, with several more on the way in 2015.Lauren currently lives in Chicago with her husband and spoiled Pomeranian. When not writing, you’ll find her at happy hour, running at a doggedly slow pace, or trying to straighten her naturally curly hair.

Don’t miss out of the Sex, Love & Stiletto Series 

where the “Oxford” guys first appeared!

AFTER THE
KISS (Book One) 
KINDLE | NOOK | IBOOKS | KOBO
 
LOVE THE
ONE YOU’RE WITH (Book Two)  
KINDLE | NOOK | IBOOKS | KOBO
 
JUST ONE
NIGHT (Book Three)  
KINDLE | NOOK | IBOOKS | KOBO
 
THE TROUBLE WITH LOVE (Book Four)
KINDLE | NOOK | IBOOKS | KOBO
 
 

Review – The Sparrow Sisters by Ellen Herrick

Title: The Sparrow Sisters
Author: Ellen Herrick
Publisher: William Morrow
Pages: 384
Genre: Magical Realism/Fantasy
Format: Kindle/Paperback

 


With echoes of the alchemy of Practical Magic, the lushness of Saving CeeCee Honeycutt, and the darkly joyful wickedness of the Witches of East End, Ellen Herrick’s debut novel spins an enchanting love story about a place where magic whispers just beneath the surface and almost anything is possible, if you aren’t afraid to listen.

 

The Sparrow Sisters are as tightly woven into the seaside New England town of Granite Point as the wild sweet peas that climb the stone walls along the harbor. Sorrel, Nettie and Patience are as colorful as the beach plums on the dunes and as mysterious as the fog that rolls into town at dusk.

 

Patience is the town healer and when a new doctor settles into Granite Point he brings with him a mystery so compelling that Patience is drawn to love him, even as she struggles to mend him. But when Patience Sparrow’s herbs and tinctures are believed to be implicated in a local tragedy, Granite Point is consumed by a long-buried fear—and its three hundred year old history resurfaces as a modern day witch-hunt threatens. The plants and flowers, fruit trees and high hedges begin to wither and die, and the entire town begins to fail; fishermen return to the harbor empty-handed, and blight descends on the old elms that line the lanes.

 

It seems as if Patience and her town are lost until the women of Granite Point band together to save the Sparrow. As they gather, drawing strength from each other, will they be able to turn the tide and return life to Granite Point?

 

The Sparrow Sisters is a beautiful, haunting, and thoroughly mesmerizing novel that will capture your imagination.

 

Purchase the Sparrow Sisters

 

Harper Collins     Amazon     Barnes & Noble     Kobo     Google Play     Audible

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The Amazon.com links used in this post are directed to the paperback copy of The Sparrow Sisters. This is an unusual case where the paperback is less expensive than the Kindle copy, FYI!

 

BFF K’s Review

 

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The Sparrow Sisters is an absolutely lovely book and the perfect pick for your fall book club meeting! I was captivated by the beautiful imagery and remarkable sense of place created by Ellen Herrick in this book. At first Granite Pointe is such an idyllic little seaside town. The residents and their surroundings are seen through the eyes of several of the characters. You learn about the quirks and nuances of Granite Pointe and its’ inhabitants. At the center of the community are the Sparrow Sisters and their nursery.

The mystical presence surrounding the Sparrows is woven through the first parts of the book and you’re left believing in the magic of who they are and what they can do through the plants that they grow in their nursery. The synopsis of the book hints at a pending tragedy and the build up creates a delicious sense of angst and suspense. There were a couple of times I was so nervous, I hesitated to turn the page or press play on Audible for fear of what might be coming.

Sorrel, Nettie and Patience are intertwined with the town and you soon realize that the success or failure of one is equal to the other. When Dr. Henry Carlyle arrives in Granite Pointe, he is immediately drawn into a passionate and life altering relationship with Patience Sparrow. When the tragedy strikes, the relationships of EVERYONE in Granite Pointe are tested and strained. I was so intrigued by the way that town turned on one of their own and the strife created from the discontent. It was too easy, almost unsettling, the way the witch hunt unfolded with the Sisters and Henry at the center. But, the devotion that the Sparrow sisters have to one another and their close-knit circle of friends/family is heartwarming. It’s critical for the women of Granite Pointe to take a stand and the Girl Power is fully awesome!

I had hoped for a little more magic and mystery, but the exceptional characters and relationships made up for any lack of alchemy. Herrick has created a delightful world full of beautiful passages and quirky characters. I enjoyed the entire book, both audio and written. The Sparrow Sisters has an immensely satisfying ending, but still leaves an opening to revisit these endearing characters. I’m looking forward to discovering what’s in store for Sorrel and checking in with all of the Sisters.

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This book was reviewed using a combination of audiobook and Advance Reader Copy. The audiobook was purchased by the reviewer, the ARC was received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

About the Author

Ellen Herrick was a publishing executive in New York until she moved to London for a brief stint; she returned nearly twenty years later with three grown children (her own, it must be said). She now divides her time between Cambridge, Massachusetts and a small Cape Cod town very much like Granite Point.

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That’s What She Said – Author Interview – Andrea Johnston

I never thought that, at 40, this would be my life. Mourning the loss of the man I vowed to love for life was hard enough. Online dating, starting a business, and falling in love was never the plan.

Victoria Bennett has been blessed with a loving husband, a wonderful son and amazing friends. Always the organized planner, Victoria was thrown life’s curve ball when she found herself a widow and single mom before 40. After mourning the loss of her husband and rejoining her friends and family in her once simple life, Victoria finds herself venturing into the world of online dating with little success.

After hanging up her keyboard and focusing on new experiences and hobbies, Victoria is as surprised as everyone else when her favorite pastime leads to a new career and passion for life. When a friendship turns to romance, her life is once again thrown for a loop. Like everything new in her life she takes on the relationship with gusto, and a series of mishaps. 
Victoria soon learns that sometimes the life you’ve planned isn’t the life you lead. It is still your life, just your life rewritten.
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But remember: #DillonisMine

That’s What She Said – Author Interview with Andrea Johnston

BFF K: How much of Victoria is you?

AJ:  Oh goodness. Much of Victoria’s personality is me but also a little dash of various friends.

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BFF K: Old-school rap? Is it really on your playlist? Did you have a writing playlist?

AJ:  Haha! It is! I am a child of the 80s & 90s and love LOVE old school rap and hip hop! I almost always had some sort of old school funk, hip hop, rap and R&B. Specifically the Beastie Boys station on Pandora.

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BFF K: Who is your D.L. Cardwell? Meaning, if you could do a private event, small meet and greet with one author, who would it be?

AJ: What’s with the hard question??? There is a list. I would have a dinner party surrounded by amazing female authors but if I could sit down for 1 hour and enjoy a cup of tea with Jackie Collins I think my life would be complete.

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BFF K: Are you going to open a P&Q? Can I come visit and read??? I love this idea!

AJ: Well, I’d like to have the home Victoria has and my own version of P&Q for my ‘tribe’. Of course you’d be on the list!!

BFF K: Thank you! If this ever happens, I’m totally there! <3

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BFF K: Will we ever get a short story where we find out what Dillon said during the P&Q event???

AJ:  It’s something I have considered. I love Dillon. I would actually love to see this story from his POV.

BFF K: That’s even better than a short story! The book from Dillon’s POV?!?! I’m swooning just thinking about it. One or both of these things should happen!

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BFF K: What’s next? Do we get Anna’s story? What about Charlotte? And when can we meet Liam???

AJ:  You’ll be happy to know I have started Anna’s story! I will say that she does meet someone and it is steamy. Charlotte talks to me constantly and is demanding her story be told. She’s a sad soul with a peppy persona. I can’t wait to share her with everyone. Oh Mr. Liam Laughlin when will you make your appearance? In due time ladies. In due time.

BFF K: Yes, I am very happy to know that! Ugh! Due time is hard…..I’ll be waiting not so patiently for all of the above!

___________________

Rapid Fire:

Tupac or Biggie? Tupac.

Red or White? White.

Cream or Sugar? Cream.

Kindle or Real Book? Kindle.

Comedy or Horror movie?  Comedy.

Cook or Dine out? Cook.

Brownies or Cupcakes? Cupcakes!

Thank you so much to Andrea Johnston for answering my most burning questions about Life Rewritten in this installment of That’s What She Said! I <3 you and I <3 this book!

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About the Author

Andrea Johnston spent her childhood with her nose in a book and a pen to paper. An avid people watcher, her mind is full of stories that yearn to be told.  A fan of angsty romance with a happy ending, super sexy erotica and a good mystery, Andrea can always be found with her Kindle nearby fully charged.
Andrea lives in Idaho with her family and two dogs.  When she isn’t spending time with her partner in crime aka her husband, she can be found binge watching all things Bravo and enjoying a cocktail. Nothing makes her happier than the laughter of her children, a good book, her feet in the water, and cocktail in hand all at the same time.

 

 

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Review – Life Rewritten by Andrea Johnston

Title: Life Rewritten
Author: Andrea Johnston
Release Date: Aug 20, 2015
Find on Goodreads

I never thought that, at 40, this would be my life. Mourning the loss of the man I vowed to love for life was hard enough. Online dating, starting a business, and falling in love was never the plan.

Victoria Bennett has been blessed with a loving husband, a wonderful son and amazing friends. Always the organized planner, Victoria was thrown life’s curve ball when she found herself a widow and single mom before 40. After mourning the loss of her husband and rejoining her friends and family in her once simple life, Victoria finds herself venturing into the world of online dating with little success.

After hanging up her keyboard and focusing on new experiences and hobbies, Victoria is as surprised as everyone else when her favorite pastime leads to a new career and passion for life. When a friendship turns to romance, her life is once again thrown for a loop. Like everything new in her life she takes on the relationship with gusto, and a series of mishaps. 
Victoria soon learns that sometimes the life you’ve planned isn’t the life you lead. It is still your life, just your life rewritten.

 

Buy Links

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

BFF K’s Review

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#DillonisMine

I’m just putting that out there right now. Up front. Honest. Throwing down. I want this hero! He’s sweet, sexy, smart, caring, kind, compassionate, patient, loving, trustworthy, honest. And, he bakes. I’m convinced he’s pretty much perfect! And he’s mine!!!

Now that that is out of the way…..Prepare yourself with all the things you will crave as you read this book: wine, chocolate, coffee and a hot, sensitive manly-man. And, if you can’t find the guy, just get more wine!

Victoria is a 40-year-old widow coming to terms with the massive changes to her life. After a series of memorable, but unsuccessful outings via online dating, she’s decided to take a break from dating. She pours herself into a new business venture centered around her love of reading. I was so moved by Victoria’s circumstances and her approach to life and love at this stage of her life; it was honest and real and emotionally charged. And, her internal (sometimes accidentally external) monologue cracks me up!

Enter Dillon, the owner of Irish Coffee, Victoria’s favorite coffee shop and haunt. He agrees to help her with the business plan and general planning for her new venture. The relationship grows from a really authentic place. Dillon’s patience and understanding of Victoria’s emotions and needs make him the most amazing BBF I’ve read in a long time. He’s also the perfect match for her.

Experiencing Dillon and Victoria navigating  their new relationship and the burgeoning business is fun and fresh. Dillon is also keeping a bit of a secret from Victoria and it was one I didn’t see coming until it smacked me in the face! But, it’s perfect!

I think the best thing about Life Rewritten is the way I felt when I finished the story. There is a perma-grin on my face and a lightness in my heart. Not only is it a sweet and poignant romance, but it’s a great story to remind us that life doesn’t always go as planned. But, Life Rewritten can still bring us more joy and satisfaction than we ever imagined.

This is Andrea Johnston’s debut novel, and I’m so looking forward to the next book. I can’t wait to see what kind of trouble Anna finds on her upcoming trip! If you like a sweet story, full of rich characters, delightful surprises and a satisfying happily ever after, one-click Life Rewritten today!

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  female point of view      

 

 

An ARC was received from the author in exchange for an honest review.  

 

Excerpt

Everyone manages to keep me distracted and on task for a solid thirty minutes. With how I’ve been feeling, that is quite the success for them. When the doorbell rings I’m a little taken aback. It is far too early for the guests and if they are already arriving, what am I going to feed them? Lunch at 10:30 in the morning? I guess, but I could go for those baked goods and Sara isn’t here and … just answer the door. Relax. I head to the door feeling as nervous as I did the day I took my driver’s license test. It’s like a swarm of butterflies has taken up residence in my stomach while a dragon flaps its wings next to them. Basically, I want to throw up.

What lies before me is a shock. All six-foot something of him, swirly blue eyes, and dressed like a gift from the hunk heavens … Dillon.

“Mornin’,” he says with that toothpaste-commercial smile. Oh boy.

“Hi. Uh, what are you doing here? What’s all that?” I say, pointing at the bags of what appear to be groceries he is holding. Groceries? Has word gotten back to him that I am not exactly Rachael Ray in the kitchen? We’ve been spending afternoons together working on my plan and I suppose becoming friends, yet none of this has come up. We don’t really get too personal, just talking about movies, my love of books, baking, and our town.

“Goodies for your guests. Well, not quite, but the ingredients to create them,” he replies with a simple shrug and a move into the house.

I step aside and hear Justin chuckle and whisper, “Close your mouth, Mom, it’s just groceries.” Justin gives Dillon the “what’s up” nod as he’s heading to the kitchen.

“Ello, ladies. Beautiful mornin’, isn’t it?” Dillon says as he starts emptying his bags. He wasn’t kidding, he even brought his own measuring cups. Just because I choose to eat culinary treats created by others doesn’t mean I don’t have the means to create my own. I have measuring cups, for goodness sake. Of course mine are from Target and hot pink, but that is neither here nor there.

Anna kicks my shin while I hear Charlotte giggle. Apparently I’m still standing there with my mouth open. Classy. “Hello, Dillon, it is a lovely morning. Isn’t it, Victoria?” Anna asks as I give her the evil eye and pull up a chair. Not one to be deterred by my so-called evil eye, Anna continues, “So, Dillon, what brings you by?”

“Well, I knew Sara was supposed to bring the treats for today and to be honest I couldn’t see her here. She has referred to reading as ‘so, like weird and scary.’ Plus, I feel compelled to see this first day through. Plus, I wanted to be here to help Victoria with Pages and Quiet if she needed it.”

He says all of this without a single misstep as he moves with ease about my kitchen. I’m sure my kitchen appreciates his presence. Dillon begins pouring ingredients into a bowl, never once pausing to squat down and check his measurements. Show off.

“What better way to get people to relax than the smell of freshly baked muffins? Don’t you agree, ladies?”

Oh sweet baby jeebus. He’s going to bake. In my kitchen. He could only be sexier if he mopped the floors after. Get it together, girl, he’s just a guy. Barely a friend and definitely not interested in a forty-year-old single mom with a fondness for spending her nights with a pint of ice cream and book.

“Well, don’t let us stop you. We’ll just be right over here watching the show,” Anna coyly replies.

A show is putting it mildly. The three of us sit there like we are watching the creation of a new civilization. He’s a master with a whisk. How is he not getting stuff all over him? I have to shower, spray down the kitchen, and still don’t get everything clean after I make some break ‘n bake cookies. And is it normal to find forearms sexy? There’s a hint of a tattoo above his shirt sleeve. And Charlotte has already whispered how he must obviously work out to have that chest. I’m ignoring her assessment. I couldn’t care less if he’s just blessed, I could watch this show all day.

“Victoria?” I hear my name but I’m so focused on those arms it takes yet another kick to the shin before I look up, thoroughly embarrassed when I realize Dillon has been talking to me.

“Sorry. I just spaced out for a sec. What was that?” Please don’t ask me anything that requires me to leave the room. I don’t want to miss any of this.

“I was asking if you wanted to come over here and help me. That way you’ll be honest with your guests when you say you made muffins.” Swoon. I’m swooning. And apparently, so is Charlotte because she lets out the sigh I am holding in. Suddenly I hear hysterical laughter coming from the doorway. Justin. He’s lucky I love him.

“Justin, really? Is it really that funny?” I ask as I stand and face him with the best Mom face I can manage.

“Mom, it really is. I don’t think Dillon has any idea what he’s asking and I think I’ll go outside and play with Tilly just to keep her safe,” he says as he grabs an apple and heads out the back door.

“Don’t mind him, come over here and help me. Nothing will feel sweeter than proving him wrong,” Dillon says with a big grin.

I want nothing more for Dillon to be right. I grab my apron off the hook and tie it as I make my way to his side. He looks at my apron and lets out a chuckle as he shakes his head. I look down and can instantly feel the blush creep up my neck to my cheeks. “Wine Not” is displayed directly across my chest. I love this apron and really, “wine not”.

Over the next thirty minutes Dillon patiently tries to help me melt chocolate. I don’t care what anyone says, anyone can catch a pot of chocolate on fire. Dillon ushers us out of the kitchen so he can finish just as the first guests arrive.

 

 

About the Author

Andrea Johnston spent her childhood with her nose in a book and a pen to paper. An avid people watcher, her mind is full of stories that yearn to be told.  A fan of angsty romance with a happy ending, super sexy erotica and a good mystery, Andrea can always be found with her Kindle nearby fully charged.
Andrea lives in Idaho with her family and two dogs.  When she isn’t spending time with her partner in crime aka her husband, she can be found binge watching all things Bravo and enjoying a cocktail. Nothing makes her happier than the laughter of her children, a good book, her feet in the water, and cocktail in hand all at the same time.

 

 

Giveaway

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Review – Finding Flynn by Alexandria Bishop

Ashtyn Moretti is ready for the best summer of her life. But her parents have other plans when they drop the bomb that her perfect summer will be spent… Away from home. Away from friends. Away from half her family. Armed with her Summer from Hell playlist and a Kindle full of book boyfriends, Ashtyn prepares to face what she is sure will be the worst summer of her life. Or will it be? Flynn James has one thing on his mind—the success of his band Marlowe. He’s focused and doesn’t have time for any distractions, and that includes facing his past. But then a petite brunette comes walking into the pub where he works. Neither Ashtyn or Flynn were looking for love but they can’t deny their obvious attraction. Ashtyn’s summer has been full of lies. The last thing she expects is for Flynn to be one of the liars too. Can she forgive his lies and turn her summer around? Can Flynn keep his secrets without losing everything? Or will this really be the Summer from Hell?

BFF K’s Review

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Let me start by saying I love this cover! It’s so freaking cute and I think it sets the tone for the whole book. This is an endearing book with a super-sexy, bad boy rocker as the hero. It is an enjoyable New Adult read.

Ashtyn is prepared to spend the “Summer from Hell” complete with a playlist to match. (See below.) After a fight with her mom, she storms out the door and stumbles right into hard body hottie, Flynn. The rest of the book is a back and forth between Ashtyn and Flynn as their relationship develops. I do have to say that I didn’t really think Flynn’s “Big Secret” was that big of a deal. There were a few times that I just wanted to shake them both and tell them to talk to each other. So many of the issues between the two could have been solved with a little communication! And, there were also a few times that I wanted to shake Ashtyn’s mom….I thought she was a little too lenient with a high school senior. (So in my head, I just pretended that Ashtyn was older!) 🙂

I enjoyed the supporting characters in this book. I loved Flynn’s band mates in Marlowe, and Ashtyn’s best friend, Chloe. I’m anxious for the next book to see where these characters go. All in all, it was a fun, quick read and an impressive debut for this brand new author!

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An ARC of this book was provided by the author in exchange for a fair review.

Link to Purchase on Amazon

Excerpt

Ashtyn

We’re strolling through a nearby empty park. Leaves are dancing in the light breeze, and a creek is babbling gently nearby. It’s quiet and peaceful but it isn’t doing anything to help calm my nerves. Although we came out here to talk, we haven’t said a word. I open my mouth and immediately close it. My mouth is dry like I just spent all day rocking out at Warped Tour, leaving my tongue like a sheet of sandpaper.

I lick my lips hoping to produce some saliva and ask, “Are there any drinking fountains nearby?”

Flynn gets a shit-eating grin and points to a giant statue with fountains on all sides. “Over there.”

I take a giant gulp that I immediately spit right back out. Unfortunately, Flynn is standing within shooting range and gets a mouthful of the nasty liquid, which tastes like coppery rotten eggs. I’m not sure which one of us is more shocked but I can’t hold in the laughter. The pain in my side is almost unbearable. I almost don’t hear Flynn say, “You think that’s funny, do you?”

Not understanding his tone, I look up to a blazing green fire. I don’t know whether to be scared or seriously turned on. I turn to run but he grabs me and flips me around. My body shakes with fear and desire as Flynn rubs his hands up and down my arms. I don’t speak, too terrified of what I would say but even more terrified of ruining whatever is happening. I nervously gnaw on my bottom lip and he zones right in on it and licks his own.

Leaning forward, I run my hands through his silky hair. He lightly presses his lips to mine, stopping everything around us. Not satisfied with the featherlight kiss, I greedily run my tongue along his bottom lip and use my teeth to gently tug on his lip ring. A guttural groan escapes him, causing my entire body to tingle, right down to my toes. Suddenly I understand what all those girls are feeling in the romance novels I devour. This single kiss will ruin all future kisses for me.

Letting go of his piercing, I push my tongue against his mouth and he grants me access. The moment our tongues tangle, the air around us thickens and everything shifts. Flynn’s hands trail my body. Everywhere he touches, my body is on fire. My back hits cold stone, and I wrap my leg around his waist. Flynn lifts me and both legs hook around him. His hardness hits my sweet spot and I let out a husky moan, causing him to rock against me. My eyes roll back into my head and I throw it back, unable to control myself any longer.

Playlists

Summer From Hell Playlist

Somewhere Other Than Hell Playlist

About the Author

Alexandria Bishop is an Oregon girl and lives there with her husband, young daughter and fur baby. She’s been a bookworm her entire life and always dreamed of becoming a writer but never thought it would be a reality.

Alexandria spends more time on social media than she would like to admit, come visit and say hi!

 

 

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