Review – Stranger Ranger by Daisy Prescott

BFF K Reviews Stranger Ranger by Daisy Prescott

Smartypants Romance Launch #2

 

New park ranger Daphne Baum is a reformed good girl. Breaking free from her overbearing family as soon as she turned eighteen, she’s been on her own ever since. The life of a park ranger, moving from park to park, suits her just fine. Though still a rule follower, she’s okay with a little sin in her life.

Every generation of Hill men has its black sheep. The general consensus among the family is that Odin Hill is the lucky bastard this go around. At seventeen, he blew out of town like an angry tornado only to return fifteen years later withdrawn and secretive. Living like a recluse in the hollows in the Smoky Mountains, he’s happy to keep to himself and is content to let locals believe he’s the town weirdo. Odin prefers the company of his pet pig to the nosy citizens of Green Valley.

When Daphne discovers Odin might be committing nefarious deeds on park land, she vows to find out the truth behind the handsome, yet chaotic, loner. Will the stranger help the ranger discover the difference between being good and doing the right thing? Or will they find themselves on opposites sides of love?

‘Stranger Ranger’ is a full-length contemporary romance, can be read as a standalone, and is book #2 in the Park Ranger series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

 

Buy Today or Read on Kindle Unlimited!

 

BFF K’s Review of Stranger Ranger

 

Daisy does it again – Stranger Ranger is a fantastic slow burn that delivers a sweet and satisfying ending! I have a sudden desire to hole up in a log cabin in the Great Smokey Mountains with my love!

Daphne is a terrific heroine with a really interesting back story. She is clever and hard working and you’ll like her more and more as the story goes on! Odin is the Thor of Vegetables and there’s so much more to him than meets the eye. The book is a lot of uncovering the backstories of both the heroine and the hero.

Daisy’s writing just makes me happy and Stranger Ranger was another delight to read! Beware the slow burn, but know it’s critical to setting up the storyline and it makes the ending worth it all. This is the perfect story to take your mind off whatever is happening in the world right now. Just be prepared to have a sudden urge to head to Tennessee!

 

 

 

 

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

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Thanks for all the release day love yesterday! Stranger Ranger ebooks and paperbacks are available now. If you buy your ebooks from a retailer other than Amazon, be sure to purchase your copy this week! Ebooks will go into the Kindle Unlimited program on 5/25. Thanks to everyone who tagged me yesterday. Thanks for reading, posting on social, and taking the time to share your thoughts in a review. I really appreciate every single one of you. Thanks for making Stranger Ranger’s release a happy day in the middle of a tough season. xox **LINKS ALSO IN MY BIO ** Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2OLZTZd Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/38fDgUf Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2RdgqHi Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2G9DccG AppleBooks: https://apple.co/2G1OCiw Nook: http://bit.ly/2NNN5kC Kobo: http://bit.ly/38rmi5w Google Play: http://bit.ly/370S60C Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/30Po5yN ✦*✦*✦*✦*✦*✦ New park ranger Daphne Baum is a reformed good girl. Breaking free from her overbearing family as soon as she turned eighteen, she’s been on her own ever since. The life of a park ranger, moving from park to park, suits her just fine. Though still a rule follower, she’s okay with a little sin in her life. Every generation of Hill men has its black sheep. The general consensus among the family is that Odin Hill is the lucky bastard this go around. At seventeen, he blew out of town like an angry tornado only to return fifteen years later withdrawn and secretive. Living like a recluse in the hollows in the Smoky Mountains, he's happy to keep to himself and is content to let locals believe he’s the town weirdo. Odin prefers the company of his pet pig to the nosy citizens of Green Valley. When Daphne discovers Odin might be committing nefarious deeds on park land, she vows to find out the truth behind the handsome, yet chaotic, loner. Will the stranger help the ranger discover the difference between being good and doing the right thing? Or will they find themselves on opposites sides of love? ——— Read book 1, Happy Trail in #Kindleunlimited https://amzn.to/3ayQ5KW

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About the Author

USA Today Bestselling Author Daisy Prescott writes romantic comedies about real love.

Love with Altitude, Daisy’s new series of standalone Rom Coms, is set in the mountains of Colorado. The Wingmen books star regular guys who often have beards, drive trucks, and love deeply once they fall. Modern Love Stories feature characters in their thirties and forties finding and rediscovering love in unexpected and humorous ways.

Born and raised in San Diego, Daisy currently lives in a real life Stars Hollow in the Boston suburbs with her husband, their rescue dog, Mulder, and an imaginary house goat. When not writing about herself in the third person, Daisy can be found traveling, gardening, baking, or lost in a good book.

To learn more about Daisy and her writing, sign up for her mailing list here (copy and paste this link): http://smarturl.it/daisysignup . Send her an email at: daisyauthor AT gmail DOT com Or chat with her on Twitter (@daisy_prescott) and Facebook: /daisyprescottauthorpage, and follow her on Instagram: /daisyprescott

Review – Cherish Her by Andrea Johnston

Title: Cherish Her
Series: Military Men of Lexington
Author: Andrea Johnston
Genre: Contemporary Romance; Small Town Romance; Single Mom Romance; Ex-military Romance

 

My life was perfect . . .

Until fate took it all away.

Heartache and broken bones left me searching for solace in the darkest of places.

It wasn’t pretty, but with the support of my family, I persevered and I’m stronger for it. My daughters deserve nothing less.

Things were finally back on track, until I met Grant Ellison. Tall, dark, and handsome he sets my heart racing. If only the fear of loving again didn’t paralyze me.

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Nobody was as surprised as me when I left a long military career for a slower pace in life. After all, I’ve never been one to make decisions lightly or without a plan.

A new town means a fresh start. Although it’s a lonely existence, I don’t regret my decision. Especially when a beautiful woman catches my eye.

Dakota Jennings’ strength and ambition are for all to see but her heart is protected by the strongest of walls. My new mission is to show her how precious she is and how great we can be together.

 

**The Military Men of Lexington is a series of interconnected, standalone, small town romances.**

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BFF K’s Review of Cherish Her

 

A little suspense, a whole lotta butterflies and one incredible silver fox Hero! Cherish Her is sweet and swoony but still full of surprises. Andrea Johnston writes wonderful small town romance, it is really her sweet spot and Cherish Her is the perfect example of her craft.

I have been waiting years for Dakota to get her Happily Ever After! She was such a significant part of the storyline in Martini’s and Moonlight though she hardly appeared in the book. But, her story was intriguing and I’ve been waiting for her to meet someone who was worthy. And is he ever worthy, Grant Ellison is absolutely fantastic!

There’s a suspenseful storyline that keeps you turning the pages to solve the mystery while you’re waiting for this slow burn to ignite. This is a really enjoyable, quick read that you should definitely add to your TBR!

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

 

 

 

“Do you have one of those pod coffee makers at your house?”

His random question pulls me from my thoughts and I actually do a double take before looking at him quickly before returning my eyes to the road.

“Huh?”

Very articulate, Dakota.

“You didn’t get your cup of coffee. I don’t know about you but if I don’t get my fill each morning, I’m only functioning at half rate. If you don’t have one of those pod things, maybe we should stop in town for a cup to go.”

Oh my goodness. Someone who gets my caffeine needs. If he tells me he wears glasses while he reads in bed I might combust. What is wrong with me? I’ve never been so scattered in my thoughts when it comes to a man. Even Jeff, bless him, never brought out this awkwardness and unbridled attraction. Of course, I never went without when Jeff was alive. It’s been years since I’ve been with a man. And, while the thought of dating has only recently come to the forefront of my mind, thanks to the man to my right, I’m a little overwhelmed.

“Oh . . uh . . . umm . . . yeah, I do. Sorry. I guess I’m a little off kilter now that I smell like I bathed in dark French roast with hazelnut creamer.”

“A dark roast kind of gal, huh? I was thinking of you as more of a flavored brew.”

“No way. I like my coffee to serve its purpose. Bold is the only way to go.”

Feeling his eyes on me, I glance his way. Slowly, he smiles before turning his attention back out his window.

“This is a nice neighborhood,” he comments as I approach a stop sign and signal to turn left.

“It’s been perfect for us. The houses are small, and while the lots are on the smaller side, it’s made maintenance easier.”

“Low maintenance is good.”

Turning into my driveway, I click the button to engage the garage door before cutting the engine. Opening the door, I look to Grant who is now on his phone.

“You weren’t serious about staying out here were you?” I’m sure he was but that’s silly.

“Of course. You shouldn’t invite strangers into your home, Dakota.”

“You’re hardly a stranger, Grant. Come on in and make yourself at home. Fair warning, two little girls live here. It’s likely there’s some sort of doll or glittery fairy lying around.”

Laughing, he exits the car and follows me into the house. “Help yourself to something to drink. I’m going to clean up and change. Be back out shortly.”

Meet the Military Men of Lexington
a series of interconnected, standalone, small town romances

Promise Her
Read for FREE with KindleUnlimited
Amazon US | Amazon Worldwide

Cherish Her
Read for FREE with KindleUnlimited
Amazon US | Amazon Worldwide

Love Her
Pre-Order Today! Releases July 23
Read for FREE with KindleUnlimited
Amazon US | Amazon Worldwide

 

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 – The Treble With Men by Piper Sheldon

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The Treble With Men, an all-new secret identity romantic standalone from Piper Sheldon, is now available in Kindle Unlimited!

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As far as Green Valley is concerned, Kim Dae disappeared into the Wraiths a decade ago. They were sort of right. Kim has spent her life since Jethro fighting her curious nature and trying to blend into the background. Unfortunately for her, a mysterious Maestro comes to town and takes quick notice of her for reasons unknown to anybody.

The masked conductor, known simply as Devlin, was already a source of much gossip thanks to his reputation for getting fired. Now, his sudden interest in the quiet fourth chair cellist has added fuel to the rumor fire. The new conductor of the symphony needs to learn to control his temper and finish his latest musical masterpiece and only the reluctant star of his symphony can help him do that. If Devlin can’t convince Kim to help to finish his latest composition he’ll lose everything.

Can Devlin and Kim compose without losing composure?

‘The Treble with Men’ is a full-length contemporary romance, can be read as a standalone, and is book #2 in the Scorned Women’s Society series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

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Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

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BFF K’s Review of The Treble with Men

The Beauty and the Beast trope takes a musical, sexy, turn and Piper Sheldon delivers another fantastic story in the Scorned Woman Series.

There’s no doubt that Devlin is more than a little devlish….he’s cranky, intolerant, demanding, intriguing, beautiful and misunderstood! And, Christine/Kim is both drawn to him and a little terrified of him. The push and pull creates a puzzling and captivating storyline that you just can’t stop reading.

The book is full of surprises and grounded in unique settings. You’ll be drawn to the characters and their circumstances. I couldn’t wait to find out which mysteries I solved and which ones still surprised me! The story and characters are so appealing that you’ll race to the end to ensure that there is an HEA! Add this enchanting story to your TBR today!

 

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

 

 

 

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Excerpt from The Treble with Men

“Let’s play through. I want to hear if you’re qualified,” Devlin said.

“Yes, Maestro.”

Around me, the symphony moved into the ready position. Devlin didn’t pick up his baton.

“You’ll need to move,” he said coolly, as his gaze flicked to the empty first chair.

Amazingly, my legs supported me despite how badly my knees tingled. The neck of my cello was tightly gripped in my fist like it was the only thing keeping me from spinning off the earth.

“We will start from the Andante movement,” he called out as I got situated.

Next to me Barry gave me a brief nod of encouragement. I managed a small smile back. Playing alone at night was a heck of a lot different than feeling an entire symphony watch you. I wiped my palms on my dress pants before straightening my spine.

My nerves were shredded. I did this for a living and yet I couldn’t get my bow to stop wobbling where it hovered just above the strings. My heart sputtered and cranked to a manic tempo. Carla should be here. What if something happened to her? The world began to tune out around me. Tears pricked behind my eyes. How ridiculous was that? I played with these people every day, but if I tried to speak or breathe or move, I’d start to cry.

“Hey.” Devlin’s voice was so soft I hardly noticed it at first. His biker boots appeared in front of my blurring vision. “Christine?”

I lifted my chin to find him standing in front of me with a furrowed brow. “Is she okay?” The question just slipped out, but I needed to know.

He dropped into a crouch to better hear me, causing me to pick up soft hints of cologne, fabric softener, and motorcycle exhaust. “What?”

I asked again a little louder but likely only Barry would be able to hear, if that.

His face was impassive like he was processing what I said. “Who? Carla?”

I nodded stiffly.

“Family emergency. She’ll be back on Monday,” he spoke softly.

“Oh.” A weight lifted from my shoulders.

My chest rose as I took a deep breath in. I released it slowly. Surely the entire room was waiting to see what my deal was.

“I appreciate you stepping in for her.” He lifted his chin to get me to look into his eyes. “I’m sure she would appreciate it too.”

I doubted that, but at least I wasn’t taking the performance from her. I was helping the orchestra out. I could absolutely do this. My thoughts had me worrying my bottom lip.

His focus lowered to my lips then quickly to where my hand gripped the shoulder of my cello. He cleared his throat. “Are you ready?”

I swallowed down my irrational fears. Carla was fine. It was just one show. I could do this. I got into position in answer to his question. Those dark eyes flitted around my face as though checking to see if I really was ready.

“All you need to do is watch me.” When he spoke his mask hardly moved; nobody would know he’d spoken at all. My gaze was locked on his as it smoldered with intensity. “It’s you and me.”

As though I could look anywhere else. When he gave me his focus, the rest of the room faded away. The rest of the world.

“Ready?” he asked.

I forced my shoulders down. He got back onto the podium and I lifted my bow to wait for my solo entrance as he counted the rest of the orchestra in. The notes on the page transformed into a foreign language. The music quieted, signifying my entrance. I drew my bow along the string, but my tense arm caused a noticeable wobble. A wave of heat burned up my neck, a flush likely giving me away. Just when I thought I might lose total control, I remembered his directions. I looked to him.

His arm conducted the rest of the orchestra smoothly as they played their soft accompaniment, but his head was turned to me. He was willing me to look at him. His eyes narrowed when mine finally met his. He nodded his chin subtly. I didn’t need to read the music. I knew this solo in my sleep. Instead, I kept my focus on him. I played. Everything else blurred into the background. The music came then. It flowed through me.

It was just us and the beautiful music.

About The Author

Piper Sheldon writes Contemporary Romance and Magical Realism books that hope to be New York Times bestsellers when they grow up. For now, she works as a technical writer during the day and writes about love the rest of the time. Of course she also makes room for her husband, toddler, and two needy dogs at home in the Desert Southwest.

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Review – Beef Cake by Jiffy Kate

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I was all in with this slow burn romance that had me laughing and swooning from cover to cover” –Author Andrea Johnston

Beef Cake, an all-new small town contemporary romance from Jiffy Kate, is LIVE!

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If opposites do actually attract, then Gunnar Erickson and Frankie Reeves take the cake.

Frankie Reeves is complicated, even though she won’t admit it. She fills her days working as an ER nurse, taking care of her mom, and searching for the father she never knew. Anything else has no place in her perfectly compartmentalized, purposefully simple life. Attachments? No thank you. She has no time for that.

Gunnar Erickson recently moved to Green Valley to train at Viking MMA with his brother Cage. Being the youngest of the Erickson clan, he’s always felt like he has something to prove, and now that he’s finished with college, it’s his time to shine. But before he can step into the ring, a freak accident sends him to the ER and into the care of one Frankie Reeves.

While he’s immediately smitten, she pretends to be unfazed by this six-foot-three, two hundred and thirty-pound beef cake. Gunnar sets out to prove to Frankie that, not only does she like him more than she wants to admit, but he’s not the uneducated, brute she assumes he is. To Frankie, he’s the worst kind of complication, but that doesn’t make it easy to stay away.

‘Beef Cake’ is a full-length contemporary romance, can be read as a standalone, and is book #4 in the Donner Bakery series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

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Download your copy TODAY!

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BFF K’s Review of Beef Cake

WARNING – Gunnar Erickson will ruin you for future heroes. He’s just so perfect! So sweet, so caring, so patient, so wonderful….so everything! Stud Muffin was one of my favorite books in 2019 and when we first met Gunnar, I was so hopeful that he would get his own story. And, it was even better than I dreamed!

Frankie reminds me of a hedgehog: super cute and a little prickly! But, if you know just how to handle her, she will love you forever. And boy oh boy does Gunnar know how to handle her!

Beef Cake is a slow burn, sweet, small town romance. But, it isn’t all fluff. (Don’t get me wrong, I love fluff. I’m a fan of all fluff!) There is a pretty serious domestic violence storyline that weaves through the book. It can be pretty unsettling so be warned, but not warned away – it’s a great story. There is hope and humor and kindness and love truly conquers all.

You should absolutely download it TODAY!

 

 

 

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

About the Author

Jiffy Kate is the joint pen name for Jiff Simpson and Jenny Kate Altman. They’re co-writing besties who share a brain. They also share a love of cute boys, stiff drinks, and fun times.

Together, they’ve written over twenty stories. Their first published book, Finding Focus, was released in November 2015. Since then, they’ve continued to write what they know–southern settings full of swoony heroes and strong heroines.

 

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Review – Meet Me On Love Lane by Nina Bocci

From the USA TODAY bestselling author of On the Corner of Love and Hate comes a romantic comedy about a woman who grudgingly returns home to small-town Pennsylvania, only to find herself falling in love—not only with the town, but with two of its citizens.

Charlotte Bishop is out of options in New York City. Fired, broke, and blacklisted by her former boss, she’s forced to return to her hometown of Hope Lake, PA to lick her wounds. Although she’s expecting to find a miserable place with nothing to do, she is pleasantly surprised to discover it is bustling and thriving.

She’s only supposed to be in Hope Lake temporarily until she can earn enough money to move back to New York. She’s not supposed to reconnect with her childhood friends or her beloved grandmother. She’s not supposed to find her dream job running the local florist shop. And she’s definitely not supposed to fall for not one but two of Hope Lake’s golden boys: one the beloved high school English teacher, the other the charming town doctor.

With a heart torn between two men and two cities, what’s a girl to do?

A perfect blend of humor and heart, Meet Me on Love Lane is the second in a new series from USA TODAY bestselling author Nina Bocci that is sure to charm fans of Josie Silver and Sally Thorne.

 

Buy It Today

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BFF K’s Review of Meet Me on Love Lane

Meet Me on Love Lane by Nina Bocci is a sweet, endearing novel reminiscent of a Hallmark Movie or a clever Rom Com. While it’s not chock full of big surprises or mind-bending plot points, it is full of wonderful characters and feel-good moments!

This is one of the books I describe as balm for a hurting heart! Have a rough week, see something sad in the news, struggling with life and want a feel-good escape? Meet Me on Love Lane (and the Hopeless Romantics Series) is just the right answer.

Meet Me on Love Lane is a charming delight and I can’t wait for Bocci to take us along on her next trip to Hope Lake!

An advance copy of this book was received. The reviewer purchased the audiobook copy. Receipt of the advance copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

About The Author

Photograph © Keith Perks

Nina Bocci is a USA TODAY bestselling novelist who loves reading and writing about swoony, relatable heroes and smart, witty heroines. If the story is set in a small town, even better. You can always find her chatting on social media about her massive, crazy Italian family and her favorite person in the world, her son. Find her at @NinaBocci on Twitter and Facebook and @Ninapolitan on Instagram.

Review – Outmatched by Kristen Callihan & Samantha Young

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Outmatched by Kristen Callihan and Samantha Young

Release Date: November 19, 2019

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Outmatched, an all-new standalone contemporary romance by New York Times bestselling authors Kristen Callihan and Samantha Young.

What happens when a boxer finds chemistry with a geek?

Parker Brown can’t believe she needs to hire a fake boyfriend. When she landed her dream job in renewable energy, she thought she’d be entering a world at the forefront of progressive thinking. But the head boss prefers to promote employees who are “settled.” Thankfully, she’s found the perfect candidate, a fellow intellectual looking for some quick cash. What Parker gets is his protective big brother—Rhys Morgan. The tall, muscled ex-boxer with a foul mouth shows up just as her boss does, and now she’s stuck with the manipulative jerk.

Responsibility weighs heavily on Rhys. Now permanently out of the ring, he’s trying to hold together his late father’s gym and keep his younger brother, Dean, on the straight and narrow. To save Dean from himself, Rhys takes his place, ready to give this society girl a piece of his mind. Instead, he finds an opportunity. Even though they can hardly stand each other, posing as Parker’s boyfriend is a win-win deal. She gets to keep her job, and he’ll charm her star-struck boss into sponsoring his gym.

Problem is, they can barely keep their hands off each other. And what started as an easy deal isn’t so easy anymore. Because what future can a rough ex-boxer, afraid to open his heart, and a polished society geek, who has sworn off real relationships, possibly have?

They say opposites attract. These opposites are about to combust on impact.

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Download your copy today!

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BFF K’s Review of Outmatched

When I first saw that this duo was releasing a co-written book, I was super excited. Then the cover and the blurb were both SO cute! I think the anticipation built it up too much. The reality was unfortunately not quite what I had hoped for. In fact, I almost DNF’d at about 30%. I just had a really had time getting into it. Thankfully a friend had already read it and told me to stick it out. In the end, I’m glad that I read Outmatched.

What I liked: the enemies to lovers storyline is spot-on! I thought that Rhys was a strong character. I liked him a lot and I wanted him to find happiness. The banter and text conversations were fun and lively.

What I struggled with: there was just too much going on! There was her job-in jeopardy with an uber creepy boss, her family (which didn’t end up making any sense as a conflict point), his gym, why he quit boxing, his brother, her college friends….there was just sooo much. I needed about 4 fewer sub-points or to flush a couple of them out a little more. I felt like overall it needed some more judicious editing.

Once the two main characters decided to become a real couple, I thought everything made more sense. I wish that would have happened sooner. The book was a slow burn that came too close to smoldering out a few too many times. I think the story had so much potential and there were things I loved about it. All in all, I am still glad that I read the story. I think it’s the loss of a great opportunity for an incredible story that disappointed me the most.

An advance copy of this book was received. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

Excerpt

AngryTink: Hey. This is Parker. Parker Brown.

My phone dinged loudly. I fumbled around my bed, finally finding the damn thing under a pillow. Wiping the sleep off my face, I rolled onto my back and read the text that had pulled me out of a pleasant sleep. I smiled. It was just so … Parker. Settling in, I answered her.

RhysThis: Don’t have to tell me who you are. Your number is programmed on my phone. What do you want?

AngryTink: Well, good morning to you too, Happy Pants.

My smile turned into an evil grin. The girl was always going to punch back and make it count.

RhysThis: That’s Mr. Happy Pants. Though, TBH, my pants aren’t too happy at the moment. Want to help me out with that?

AngryTink: Tempting. Truly. But, no.

RhysThis: RU sure? ‘Cuz Happy Pants Rhys is much more agreeable than Sad That He Had to Self-Satisfy Rhys.

AngryTink: Would you please behave?

RhysThis: I’m not the one who mentioned the emotional state of my pants.

AngryTink: ARGH!

A chuckle rumbled in my chest as my thumbs tapped out a response I knew would piss her off more.

RhysThis: Was that even English? Honestly, Ms. Brown, I thought you were educated.

She took a moment to answer. I could picture her, phone in hand, grinding her teeth.

AngryTink: You’re deliberately trying to annoy me, aren’t you?

RhysThis: You’re quick. I’ll give you that.

AngryTink: Mr. Morgan, I’m about ten seconds away from finding an alternate fake boyfriend. A goat on a rope would be a better candidate at this point.

It was cute she thought that was threatening.

RhysThis: Yeah, probably. But the goat doesn’t have a signed contract. I do, Tinker Bell.

AngryTink: ARGH@!!

RhysThis: You’re kind of cute when you talk pirate.

About the Authors

About Kristen:

Kristen Callihan is an author because there is nothing else she’d rather be. She is a RITA winner and three-time nominee and winner of two RT Reviewer’s Choice awards. Her novels have garnered starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly and the Library Journal, as well as being awarded top picks by many reviewers. Her debut book FIRELIGHT received RT Magazine’s Seal of Excellence, was named a best book of the year by Library Journal, best book of Spring 2012 by Publisher’s Weekly, and was named the best romance book of 2012 by ALA RUSA. When she is not writing, she is reading.


Connect with Kristen:

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/KristenCallihan/

Twitter – Kris10Callihan

Website – http://www.kristencallihan.com/

Amazon – https://amzn.to/2zrf3Lo

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/Kristen_Callihan

About Samantha:

Samantha Young is a New York Times and #1 International bestselling author from Stirlingshire, Scotland. On Dublin Street was Samantha’s first adult contemporary romance series and has sold in thirty countries. She has since published over thirteen romance titles including the New York Times Bestsellers Into the Deep, Hero, and her most recent contemporary romance Play On. When writing Adult Paranormal romance she writes under the pen name S. Young.

Connect with Samantha:

Social media links:

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/AuthorSamanthaYoung/

Website – http://authorsamanthayoung.com

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/authorsamanthayoung/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/AuthorSamYoung

Pinterest – https://www.pinterest.co.uk/samyoungauthor/

Amazon – http://amzn.to/2H47kEP

Goodreads – http://bit.ly/2FWgYdn

Bookbub – http://bit.ly/2D241eO

Review – Stud Muffin by Jiffy Kate

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It’s hard to get revenge without getting a rap sheet.

Stud Muffin, an all-new friends-to-lovers standalone romance from Jiffy Kate, is available now!

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After Tempest Cassidy walks in on her husband banging her high school nemesis, her whole world gets turned upside down. She goes from being known as the Duchess of Muffins to the town crazy. Her new MO: revenge. Eventually, Tempest grows weary being arrested. Yet what choice does she have? If she’s not angry, then she’s simply . . . sad.

Just as she decides to get her life back on track, in walks Cage Erickson, the new bouncer at the local strip club. He’s scary-handsome and the polar opposite of her ex. She’s attracted to him, but she’s not looking for a rebound. He’s attracted to her, but he’s not looking for a serious relationship. So, they agree to be friends.

But when lines get blurred in the friend zone, will they both get burned? Or will it be a TKO?

‘Stud Muffin’ is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book#2 in the Donner Bakery series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

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Download your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/35TdNQh

AppleBooks: https://apple.co/2lWf2eJ

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/StudMuffin

Nook: http://bit.ly/2m1a1lk

Kobo: Coming Soon!

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BFF K Review of Stud Muffin

A girlfriend called me tonight and asked, “what do you think of this Smartypants Romance thing?” I am pretty sure I went on for about 7 solid minutes listing all of the things that I love about this world and the incredible authors bringing more of the spaces and characters to life! Stud Muffin is one of my favorite books in the Smartypants world so far; and this delightful rom-com is a standout and one of my favorite books in 2019!

Tempest is fabulous! She’s clever and sweet, smart and talented. She’s a little naive, but not in a way that gets annoying, in a way that makes her charming and endearing. She doesn’t deserve the horrible way that her husband has treated her and it’s easy to see why she loses her mind for a bit. In fact, I think her slightly unhinged personality is super easy to relate to! 😉

Cage….Cage is just everything. When you picture a viking, cage fighter with a heart of gold…you get Cage. He’s strong, protective, patient, kind, loyal and everything Tempest needs and deserves. He’s a really swoony, dreamy, fantastic hero!

Like the rest of the Smartpants books, it’s wonderful to see what these talented authors have created inside Penny Reid’s world. You don’t need to be a Penny Reid fan to enjoy this book, but it sure makes it that much sweeter if you are a Penny-fangirl! I did a combo read and listen on Author’s Direct. The narrators made this story come alive and were really wonderful.

If you’re looking for a rom-com that that you can absolutely devour, Stud Muffin definitely hits the sweet spot!

An advance copy of this book was received. The reviewer purchased the audiobook copy. Receipt of the advance copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

Excerpt from Stud Muffin

As Mindy gets closer, she begins rubbing her hand over her belly, ensuring I know she’s with spawn, I mean, child. How far along is she anyway? The picnic wasn’t that long ago and she didn’t look pregnant then, did she? Maybe she did, but I was too shocked by the ring on her finger to notice? My mother would’ve said something to me when she broke the news about Mindy and Asher being married, so she must not have noticed either.

Maybe she just carries big… and early. Maybe she’s pregnant with multiples. That would be rich—I can’t even get pregnant with one, but Mindy Mitchell, husband stealer extraordinaire, can have my husband and all the babies.

All I know is that I have to stop gawking because Mindy is enjoying this way too much.

“Hey, Tempest. Soup for one, I presume?” Her smile is wide and condescending as she glances at the contents of my shopping cart.

Bitch.

“You know, I’ve been so busy lately that canned soup is all I have time for some nights. It’s not always the healthiest option, with all that sodium, but I’m fortunate to not retain water, like you obviously do.”

Really, Tempest? Is that the best put-down you can think of?

“I’m not bloated, silly.” She laughs, swatting the air in front of her face. “I’m pregnant! Of course, I don’t expect you to notice the difference.”

It’s illegal to hit a pregnant lady, Tempest.

She’s not worth the jail time.

Deep, cleansing breaths.

You don’t look good in orange.

“How far along are you?” I ask, willing myself to stay calm. “Elephants are pregnant, for what, two years?” I know I’m being immature, but I’m using my words and not my fists, so I’m calling it a win.

“Gah, you’re such a bitch. No wonder Asher wanted to leave you. At least I was able to give him what he wanted,” she brags, rubbing her belly even faster than before.

Maybe if she rubs a little more, a fucking genie will pop out, and I can at least get three wishes out of this deal. Wish one: Asher and Mindy disappear off the face of the planet.

“And,” she continues, “because I know it’s driving you crazy, I’ll let you in on the secret. I’m in my third trimester.” She smiles and squeals, like we’re BFFs and she just told me the best news. “Just a couple more months to go and this precious bundle of joy will be in the world… Asher is going to be such a great daddy.”

The blood drains from my face as I do the math in my head. Asher and I have been divorced for almost two months. I found them in bed together three months before that. Two plus three does not equal the amount of months it takes to be in the third trimester. I know my pregnancy facts.

Mindy just answered one of my many burning questions: that sack of shit was cheating on me months before I busted him.

And now, he’s having a baby with someone else.

Honestly, I don’t know how to feel right now… numb, blind-sided, furious, hurt?

All I know is I’m trying my damnedest not to lose my shit.

Deep breaths.

“Believe me,” Mindy says, breaking through the haze I’m in. “I tried and tried to get Asher to leave you before you found out about us on your own, but he didn’t listen.” She sighs, like she’s disappointed for me… like she’s on my side and she was trying to do me a favor. “Oh, well, life goes on, right?”

We enter into a bit of a staring competition for a brief moment, her bright, smiling eyes against my crazy, sadistic glare. I feel the crazy oozing out of me. When she finally starts to back her buggy up to make a U-turn in the aisle, she has the audacity to smile… and wink at me.

She’s the incarnation of Satan.

Asher and Mindy aren’t going to have a bouncing bundle of joy, they’re going to have a devil love child. I should alert the media. This has a horror movie written all over it.

“See you around, Tempest,” she says over her shoulder, before stopping and turning. “Oh, I guess I’ll see you at the reunion, if not before… and you’re bringing a date, right?”

Deep breaths, Tempest.

I don’t answer her with words, only with my glare, hoping it burns a hole in her skull.

You can do this.

Don’t let that cow win.

After she makes a turn onto another aisle, I take a few more deep breaths, willing my nerves to calm, and when that doesn’t work, I close my eyes and try harder. With my hands on my knees, I suck in air like it’s going extinct. My breathing becomes routine and I automatically start swaying my body in preparation for the Tai Chi moves that come next.

Cage has been teaching me a little bit of Tai Chi to further help channel my anger and anxiety and I have to admit, I love it. Completely forgetting where I am, I begin to perform my favorite combination of steps. If people see me, I don’t care. I’d rather them talk about me doing Tai Chi in the canned goods aisle than losing my shit at the Piggly Wiggly.

I’m finally feeling relaxed and in control of my emotions, so to celebrate my victory, I decide to throw a few punches into the air, similar to what Rocky Balboa did after running up all those stairs in the movie.

I am Tempest Cassidy, master of my emotions.

Thoroughly enjoying myself, I decide to end my impromptu workout with a killer roundhouse kick… right into a tower of Pork N Beans.

At first, it’s only a few cans. I lurch out, containing them in a lunge, looking around to see who might’ve witnessed my performance. Only a lady down at the other end of the aisle seems to be in the know. I breathe out a sigh of relief, feeling uncharacteristically lucky as I try to balance the cans and myself.

Just as I decide it’s safe to stand up, I lose my balance and the cans in my hands take a tumble… and then the entire end cap begins to fall.

Cans.

Cans of Pork N Beans are rolling everywhere.

When everything finally comes to a rest, I’m sprawled out on the glossy tile of the Piggly Wiggly in aisle six, using my body as a dam to stop them from getting too far. I’m afraid to move… afraid to breathe…

 

 

About the Authors

Jiffy Kate is the joint pen name for Jiff Simpson and Jenny Kate Altman. They’re co-writing besties who share a brain. They also share a love of cute boys, stiff drinks, and fun times.

Together, they’ve written over twenty stories. Their first published book, Finding Focus, was released in November 2015. Since then, they’ve continued to write what they know–southern settings full of swoony heroes and strong heroines.

Connect with Jiffy Kate

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2kkDmqx

Twitter: http://bit.ly/2ki0mq5

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2lGyhsz

Instagram: http://bit.ly/2kkDkPr

Website: http://www.jiffykate.com/

Connect with Smartypants Romance

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2kvDnb4

Twitter: http://bit.ly/2lzyduO

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2lGdIMQ

Instagram: http://bit.ly/2kwKsYK

Website: https://smartypantsromance.com/

 

 

Review – Happy Trail by Daisy Prescott

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“Happy Trail was a feel good, funny and heartwarming adventure with the usual Daisy Prescott charm..”– T. Gephart, USA Today bestselling author

Happy Trail, an all-new opposites attract standalone romance from USA Today bestselling author Daisy Prescott, is available now!

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A man of few words, Ranger Jay Daniels values the calm, quiet solitude of the Great Smoky Mountains. Never quite fitting in with either side of his family, he prefers the company of birds and trees to people.

Yeah, he’d most definitely prefer a bird—any bird, any bird at all, take a vulture for instance—to the human-tornado hybrid that just blew onto his peaceful stretch of the Appalachian Trail.

The path of true love never has run smooth for Olive Perry. After getting dumped and promptly abandoned in the middle of her multi-month hike, Olive swears off men. Determined to finish the long trek by herself, she doesn’t need a prince—or broody and taciturn ranger—to save her.

Yet, when an early snowstorm threatens the mountains, and Ranger Daniels is charged with getting hikers to safety, that includes hot-tempered Olive Perry. Snowed in and forced to share an abandoned cabin, can Olive’s heated intensity melt Jay’s cool reserve?

And if so, will this happy trail lead to true love? Or will their time together be just another bump in the road?

‘Happy Trail’ is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book#1 in the Park Ranger series.

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Download today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2MEE8K1

AppleBooks: https://apple.co/2lB3BJv

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/HappyTrail

Nook: http://bit.ly/2m0VeXN

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2lEAwww

Google Play: http://bit.ly/2jXnfPc

Amazon Print: https://amzn.to/2ku05Al

Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2kwOTmm

 

BFF K’s Review of Happy Trail

Daisy Prescott is consistent…..consistently amazing! I know for a fact that when I pick up one of her stories, I’m going to fall in love. I’m going to fall in love with the characters and their struggles, with the highs and lows of the personal and romantic journey, with the setting and the supporting characters. Daisy Prescott writing a book set in Green Valley and the Penny Reid Universe? Well, I knew it was going to be great, and boy was it ever GREAT!

Jay and Olive have the most unlikely journeys that bring them together. In so many ways, they wouldn’t seem a match “on paper” but in every way that counts, they’re perfect for one another. They both have super interesting back stories that give each of them solid identity and their own substance. Olive’s journey on the Trail is particularly interesting, dare I say inspiring! And, Jay is learning how to come to terms with his own identity, history and future. It’s a joy to read, learn and experience the lives of both main characters.

Happy Trail is set on the Appalachian Trail and in and around Green Valley. It’s so idyllic, I desperately wish Green Valley were a real place I could visit and experience along with these characters. It’s the true mark of an incredible writer when they can make a place come alive as a character in the book and Daisy has painted such vivid images of life on the Trail and in Green Valley. Her story has continued to add depth to the Penny-verse and I can’t wait for more in this Park Ranger series!

Three cheers for Smartypants Romance and the chance to savor more great authors in this really vibrant world! And 5 amazing, happy, bright, shiny, feel-good stars for Daisy Prescott’s Happy Trail!

An advance copy of this book was received from the author. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review. BFF Book Blog also uses a set of icon ratings. This book received additional icons for: world creation, romance, hero, heroine, character development, supporting characters, sweet and butterflies.

 

 

 

An advance copy of this book was received from the author. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

Excerpt

“Can we drop the pretense of not being trapped on the wrong side of the fence with whatever bloodthirsty beast is making such a sound?” I squint into the distance, hoping narrowing my eyes will give me super strength vision.

It doesn’t. I step behind Ranger Daniels for protection.

“What are you doing?” He twists his neck to look down at me.

“Hiding. I believe you took an oath to protect and serve.”

“Pfft. You’re confusing me with a police officer. I’m here to engage, educate, and empower.” He moves so he’s beside me.

“You carry a gun, don’t you?”

“Sometimes. Do you see a holster now?”

I scan his hips and shake my head, allowing my eyes to linger on the tight fit of his uniform pants over his strong thighs and the thick belt at his narrow waist. Ranger Daniels is packing heat, but not of the pistol variety.

Is it hot in here, or is it just me?

A distinct braying reaches my ears.

“Is that a donkey?” I tip my head.

“What would a donkey be doing up here? Makes no sense.”

“Ask him. Or her.” I point at the gray beast moving toward us. “I’m a city girl, but I’m pretty sure that’s an ass.”

“Well, I’ll be damned.” Jay removes his hat.

Maybe he plans to shoo away our attacker with it?

The gray form ambles toward us, letting out a loud bray and revealing large teeth.

“Should we be worried?” I’m standing behind Jay again.

“About a donkey? They’re mostly docile. He’s probably just curious.” Shifting his attention forward, he addresses our new friend. “Hey there. Where’d you come from?”

The donkey halts.

“See? He’s fine. Probably thinks we’re bringing treats.”

“And what will he do when he realizes we’re showing up to his house empty-handed?” I’m half mocking. In my world, not bringing a hostess gift is an unthinkable breach of etiquette. I have no idea about the social decorum for equines.

“Let’s go.” Jay encourages me forward with a sweep of his hat.

We take several steps and the donkey does the same without breaking eye contact, like we’re about to duel. There’s definitely a challenge, a mild threat in the eyes of our new foe.

“Should we slowly retreat to the fence?” I whisper at Jay’s back.

“Nah, we’re fine.”

“Maybe he’s a guard donkey.” I slide a glance over my shoulder toward safety. We’re a dozen or so yards away, but it isn’t too late to make a quick escape.

Jay’s eyes meet mine. “You know guard donkeys aren’t a thing.”

“I’m a stranger in a strange land—anything’s possible.” I wait until he faces forward to stick my tongue out at him.

He’s shaking his head and clearly not paying attention to me anymore as he stomps across the squishy field.

Left with no choice, I follow after him.

My boot slips in the mud, or donkey poop—it’s impossible to tell the difference. I squawk and flail my arms as I tumble forward in an awkward motion resembling the mating dance of an emu.

The donkey’s ears prick up before flattening against his head.

“Uh oh,” I murmur as I straighten up.

“It’s fine,” Jay says for the dozenth time.

Only he’s wrong.

About the Author

Born and raised in San Diego, Daisy currently lives in a real life Stars Hollow in the Boston suburbs with her husband, their rescue dog, Mulder, and an imaginary house goat. When not writing about herself in the third person, Daisy can be found traveling, gardening, baking, or lost in a good book.

Connect with Daisy

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2lzD4fw

Twitter: http://bit.ly/2lXq4jW

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2lXqZAU

Instagram: http://bit.ly/2m2eVhW

Website: https://www.daisyprescott.com/

Connect with Smartypants Romance

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Website: https://smartypantsromance.com/

 

 

Review – Baking Me Crazy by Karla Sorensen

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“Friends to lovers at its best– a sweet indulgence I couldn’t put down!” – R.S. Grey, USA Today Bestselling Author

Baking Me Crazy, the first in the romantic comedy Donner Bakery Series of standalones, from Karla Sorensen is available now!

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I’m Levi Buchanan, and until five years ago, I thought the legend of my family’s curse was a load of crazy, Southern nonsense.

No curse can make you fall in love at first sight. No curse can force a true, deep, passionate, all-consuming love that will haunt you all the days of your life.

Then I met Jocelyn Abernathy and I realized how completely wrong I was.

The problem is, Jocelyn guards her feelings like well-armed soldier. She’s the most beautiful, stubborn, infuriating woman I’ve ever met. Every time she talks, I want to kiss the living daylights out of her. But I can’t.

Because when we met, she didn’t need true love. She needed a best friend. And that’s what I’ve been to her… for five years.

But when Jocelyn meets a handsome stranger her first day working at Donner Bakery and she lets him buy her a dill pickle cupcake, I realize with ominous regret that I may have missed my window with my best friend.

If I can’t get her to see past our friendship, my new curse may be to watch the love of my life move on with someone else.

‘Baking Me Crazy’ is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book#1 in the Donner Bakery series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

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Download your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/313ShV6

AppleBooks: https://apple.co/2ku8Pq7

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/BakingMeCrazy

Nook: http://bit.ly/2lEMEh0

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2lU7066

Google Play: http://bit.ly/2klKiUj

Amazon Print: https://amzn.to/2k0ZaqL

Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2ku91Wg

BFF K’s Review of Baking Me Crazy

If Baking Me Crazy is any indication, we all need to get ready for some incredible books from the Smartypants Romance writers!
There’s a Buchanan Curse. ”…it’s been said that Buchanan men fall in love only once, and they fall in love—real, true love—the moment they meet the one.“ Levi Buchanan has fallen victim to the curse as well and the object of his affection is his best friend Joss. They’re move from friends to lovers is a slow burn, but so sweet and authentic that you’ll be cheering for them to “figure it out already!”
Part of what I love about Penny Reid and the Smartypants universe is a commitment to tell stories with diverse characters and truly unique settings. Baking Me Crazy is a glowing example of both of these tenets. Joss is an extraordinary character and it’s wonderful to read a book that places you in a unique setting and in the mind of a character with a uncommon set of circumstance. And, Levi fiercely loves her through it all. It’s fun reading the scenes as he tries to get Joss to switch from the BFF mindset to Best Friends with All-the-Benefits!
I absolutely recommend Baking Me Crazy, in fact, I think I told 3 people at work about it on Tuesday. I hope many many more people will read it too! Bring on all the Smartypants books ASAP!
An advance copy of this book was received. The reviewer purchased the audiobook copy. Receipt of the advance copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

 

Excerpt from Baking Me Crazy

“Besides, this is my best friend perk. Shouldn’t I get perks in baked goods?”

She cut me a look. “You’ve been getting those perks for two years, Buchanan. Don’t even pretend you didn’t put on a solid ten pounds that first year I started baking.” Quite pointedly, she looked at my stomach, which we both knew was covered in muscle.

“That’s rude,” I mumbled under my breath. I flexed my bicep. Nero licked my elbow since it was right in front of him. “Yeah, ten pounds in my left arm maybe.”

The noise she made roughly translated to you are ridiculous. She made that sound at me a lot. Of course, the sad truth of the matter was that I was ridiculous.

Not once in the past five years had my feelings lessened for her. I had just learned to live with them. In my junior year of undergrad, I was taking a class on brain pathology in injuries, and a man came to talk to us about how he learned to live without his right arm after it was amputated.

He told us about how, even years after he lost his arm, his brain still triggered sensations to the limb that was no longer there. The adult brain, in particular, struggled to reorganize after the loss of a limb, and given that four out of five amputees suffer from phantom pain symptoms, some of which were incredibly debilitating, it was a lesson that stuck with me.

I wasn’t fool enough to think that me loving Jocelyn was on par with a man who’d lost his arm, but something about the way he talked plucked at a chord inside me. Sometimes my brain struggled to remember that we were just friends.

She’d never dated, never even hinted that she wanted to. She’d never given me a longing glance. Never stared at my mouth like she wondered what it tasted like.

But my hands never, not once, stopped wanting to reach for hers. My fingers always, always itched to dig into her crazy hair and see what the curve of her scalp felt like.

My brain knew what this relationship was, but sometimes, the signals it sent to the rest of my body didn’t always match up with the truth of our situation. We worked out together a lot, Joss and I, and when she got frustrated with the limitations of her body, I always wanted to wrap my arms around her.

I wanted to pull her into the curve of my body, absorb her dissatisfaction into my skin, and carry it for her. That was the irony when she made noises like that.

She had absolutely no clue how ridiculous I really was.

About the Author

Karla Sorensen has been an avid reader her entire life, preferring stories with a happily-ever-after over just about any other kind. And considering she has an entire line item in her budget for books, she realized it might just be cheaper to write her own stories. It doesn’t take much to keep her happy…a book, a really big glass of wine, and at least thirty minutes of complete silence every day. She still keeps her toes in the world of health care marketing, where she made her living pre-babies. Now she stays home, writing and mommy-ing full time (this translates to almost every day being a ‘pajama day’ at the Sorensen household…don’t judge). She lives in West Michigan with her husband, two exceptionally adorable sons and big, shaggy rescue dog.

Connect with Karla

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2lU6xAS

Twitter: http://bit.ly/2khRSPL

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2k0Yp0T

Instagram: http://bit.ly/2lBNuez

Website: http://www.karlasorensen.com/

Connect with Smartypants Romance

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2kvDnb4

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Amazon: https://amzn.to/2lGdIMQ

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Website: https://smartypantsromance.com/

 

 

Review – Beard with Me by Penny Reid

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“This is Penny Reid at her finest.” — L.B. Dunbar, author

Beard With Me, an epic and breathtaking story from New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Penny Reid, is available now!

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No one is better at surviving than Scarlet St. Claire and making the best out of circumstances beyond her control is Scarlet’s specialty. In an apocalyptic situation, she’d be the last person on earth, hermitting like a pro, singing along to her CD Walkman, and dancing like no one is watching.

Scarlet is clever, Scarlet is careful, and Scarlet is smart . . . except when it comes to Billy Winston.

No one is better at fighting than Billy Winston and raging against his circumstances—because nothing is beyond his control—is Billy’s specialty. In an apocalyptic situation, he’d be the first person on earth to lead others to safety, overcome catastrophe, or die trying.

Billy is fearless, Billy is disciplined, and Billy is honorable . . . except when it comes to Scarlet St. Claire.

‘Beard With Me’ is the origin story of Billy Winston and Scarlet St. Claire (aka Claire McClure) and is just the beginning of their epic love story.

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Download your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2lAQAj8

Apple Books: https://apple.co/2kwugqz

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Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2lzgOCt

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Enter the giveaway for a signed paperback set of The Winston Brothers Series!

http://bit.ly/2mGr64Q

 

BFF K’s Review of Beard with Me

I don’t mean to skip ahead but….Beard Necessities is the title of the next (and final) book in the Winston Brothers Series. And, I don’t think there’s ever been a more appropriate title. After reading Beard with Me, I’m in desperate need of the next book. Now! Stat! Please put me out of my heart-broken misery!!! 💔

I’ve been waiting the entire series to know and understand Billy Winston. And, the backstory is even more endearing and tragic than I imagined. Billy and Scarlet are star-crossed lovers for sure. Beard with Me is the beginning of their relationship and explains all the ins and outs of their broken journey.

Bill Winston has always struck me as being wiser than his years and carrying more responsibility than someone his age and all of his siblings. I had NO idea. My intuition didn’t even scratch the surface of what was really happening in his life, his heart and his brain. And, if Billy is an old soul, then he’s a perfect match for Scarlet. This book is a tale of young love, misunderstanding, and sacrifice that exceeds maturity.

This story was at times hard to read due to the gut-wrenching challenges and vulnerabilities that the characters displayed, but it was such a glimpse into what circumstances built the Winston family. And, it was the perfect story I didn’t know I needed in the series.

All of the praise for this angst-filled, tear-jerker aside, I don’t remember the last time I was this anxious to end a cliffhanger and put a beautiful bow on the Winston Brothers Series!

 

 

 

An advance copy of this book was received. The reviewer purchased the audiobook copy. Receipt of the advance copy did not impact the content or independence of this review.

Excerpt from Beard with Me

*Scarlet*

“Do you want me to leave?”

Yes. That would be best, a wise voice said between my ears.

So of course I inhaled deeply and said as calmly as I could manage, “I thought we were going to go get firewood.”

“Okay. Good.”

“But then,” I blurted, flustered and irritated with myself for not speaking wisdom, “You should go. You can’t tell me carting firewood back and forth between your house and here is how you want to spend the last of your Thanksgiving weekend.”

“I didn’t say it was.” He began making his way up the incline.

“But you just said—”

“How about we make a deal.” Billy dropped the kindling next to my little woodpile, dusting his hands off on his pants. “I’ll cart the firewood, and you sing.”

“You want me to serenade you while we carry firewood?”

He smiled, slow and easy as he walked to me and reached out his hand. On autopilot, I accepted it and allowed him to help me up.

As soon as I was standing, his gaze moved from my hairline down to my nose, lips, and then chin, saying quietly, “I’ll take a serenade from you anytime.”

Thunk ka-thunk. That was my heart. It had been doing the thunk ka-thunk quite a lot around him. I ignored it, because what else could I do?

“And you’re not carrying the wood.” He tugged on my hand, pulling me out of my daze and past my tent.

“I will too carry wood.” Struggling to find my bearings, I stumbled after him. “I can carry logs just fine.”

“You’ll carry a log.” Billy fit his fingers between mine, pressing our palms together and grinning at me like he was waiting for me to argue and he couldn’t wait.

Snapping my mouth shut, I glared at him.

“Nothing to say?”

Maintaining my glare, I walked next to him. I wasn’t being led anywhere I didn’t wish to go. Not anymore. He wasn’t talking me into anything else.

“That’s an awfully mean look, Scarlet.” His grin grew, his brutally attractive eyes glowing happily as he peered down at me.

“Well, you deserve it. Always trying to tell me what I can and can’t do. I’m not arguing with you about this. I’m carrying as much wood as I want and you can take your stupid, chauvinistic opinions and shove them up your pretty-boy ass.”

Goodness. Where had that come from?

Billy’s steps faltered and his mouth fell open, his eyebrows rising high on his forehead. He stared at me, looking shocked as hell. And then in the next moment, he threw his head back and laughed. But he did not let go of me, instead bringing my knuckles to his chest as his deep, rumbly laughter filled the empty spaces between the trees, surrounding us.

Crushing me.

Yes. I was well and truly crushed as I could only watch Billy Winston laugh, desperately basking in the image of him so delighted and relaxed. I had the odd sense that his laughter also filled the empty spaces inside of me, the neglected, vacant rooms, and even a few places that felt brand-new, like he’d created them.

All that noble honesty he carried around like a boulder abruptly lifted, revealing him. Just him. Carefree and young and happy. Someone he might’ve been if his burdens hadn’t been so heavy, his responsibilities so broad.

It lasted only a minute, maybe two, maybe less, but I had the sense of being caught afterward. Billy’s laughter had receded, but he’d spun a web while I’d been staring at him, holding his hand.

His grin became smaller and he bit his bottom lip, his gaze dropped to my mouth. “You think I’m pretty?”

“You know you’re pretty,” I said, bizarrely out of breath, rattled, needing to anchor my focus to a tree beyond him and waging war against the heat climbing up my neck to my cheeks. Oddly, my eyes stung. I blinked.

His attention was still on me. I felt it, but I didn’t dare look at him. I couldn’t handle one of Billy Winston’s intense stares right now. He’d probably use my scattered wits to his advantage, talk me into something I shouldn’t want to do, and then I’d be kicking myself later.

“What’s wrong?” he asked, his voice deep with concern, all trace of his earlier humor gone.

I huffed, trying half-heartedly to steal my hand back from him. He didn’t let it go, instead taking my tugging as a signal to step closer, filling my vision.

“Scarlet—”

“Are you ever going to teach me how to play the guitar?” I closed my eyes.

He didn’t answer right away, and I felt him hesitate, his mind work before he muttered, “It’s only been a week.”

A quality to his voice made me think he wasn’t answering the question I’d asked, but rather he was reminding himself that it had only been a week since we’d struck the deal.

Was that only last week? Why does it feel like so much has changed?

Then he said, “Don’t be angry.”

“I’m not angry.” I was muddled, my head and heart hurt, I was incredibly confused, but I wasn’t angry.

The air shifted and I felt him move closer. A second later, the fingers of his free hand were at my ear, tucking my hair behind it, his fingertips lingering at my neck, sending wave after wave of goose bumps every which way. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t swallow. I couldn’t think. Every nerve in my body strained toward him and I didn’t understand it. What is happening?

“Have you ever been kissed, Scarlet?”

 

About the Author

Penny Reid is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Best Selling Author of the Winston Brothers, Knitting in the City, Rugby, and Hypothesis series. She used to spend her days writing federal grant proposals as a biomedical researcher, but now she just writes books. She’s also a full time mom to three diminutive adults, wife, daughter, knitter, crocheter, sewer, general crafter, and thought ninja.

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