Tuesday, June 19, 2018

#BookReview - The Cottages on Silver Beach by RaeAnne Thayne

Title: The Cottages on Silver Beach
Author: RaeAnne Thayne
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction
Publisher: Harlequin Books
Release Date: June 19, 2018


About the Book:
Years after betraying her, he’s back in Haven Point…and ready to learn the truth

Megan Hamilton never really liked Elliot Bailey. He turned his back on her family when they needed him the most and it almost tore them all apart. So she’s shocked when Elliot arrives at her family’s inn, needing a place to stay and asking questions that dredge up the past. Megan will rent him a cottage, but that’s where it ends—no matter how gorgeous Elliot has become. 

Coming back home to Haven Point was the last thing bestselling writer Elliot Bailey thought he’d ever do. But the book he’s writing now is his most personal one yet and it’s drawn him back to the woman he can’t get out of his mind. Seeing Megan again is harder than he expected and it brings up feelings he’d thought were long buried. Could this be his chance to win over his first love?
Buy Links: Amazon 

My Review:

When I first started reading THE COTTAGES ON SILVER BEACH, I didn't realize that this was Book #8 in the Haven Point series.  I had only read two other books in this series (Serenity Harbor and Sugar Pine Trail) and although I was able to follow along with this particular story, I'm sure I would have enjoyed it more had I been familiar with some of the other characters. I must say, however, that I loved the characters Megan and Elliot. Their history kept them at arms length, although they each harbored feelings that eventually needed to come out. This was a romance with a touch of mystery.

Megan, a talented photographer, owns and runs an Inn that consists of several cottages along Silver Beach, which she inherited from her grandmother. When Elliot Bailey, an FBI agent and the brother of Megan's deceased fiance, rents one of Megan's cabins, past memories cause tension between the two of them and with Luke, Megan's brother, who had been suspected of foul play when his wife went missing several years earlier. Megan is determined to prove her brother's innocence and embarks on a road trip with Elliot to piece together some clues that had not been followed up on. 

I love the writing style of RaeAnne Thayne and this series is quite heartwarming with characters that come alive in your mind as you read. I hovered between four and five wine glasses on this one, but settled on four. You can call it four and a half. 

My Rating:

About the Author:
I'm not one of those people who knew from birth she was destined to become a writer. I always loved to read and throughout my childhood I could usually be found with a book in my hands. To the disgust of my friends, I even enjoyed creative writing assignments that made them all groan. But I had other dreams besides writing. I wanted to be an actress or a teacher or a lawyer.

Life took a different turn for me, though, when my mother made me take a journalism elective in high school (thanks, Mom!). I knew the first day that this was where I belonged.

After I graduated from college in journalism, I took a job at the local daily newspaper and I reveled in the challenge and the diversity of it. One day I could be interviewing the latest country music star, the next day I was writing about local motorcycle gangs or interviewing an award-winning scientist.

Through it all -- through the natural progression of my career from reporter to editor -- I wrote stories in my head. Not just any stories, either, but romances, the kind of books I have devoured since junior high school, with tales about real people going through the trials and tribulations of life until they find deep and lasting love.

I had no idea how to put these people on paper, but knew I had to try -- their stories were too compelling for me to ignore. I sold my first book in 1995 and now, more than 30 books later, I've come to love everything about writing, from the click of the computer keys under my fingers to the "that's-it!" feeling I get when a story is flowing.

I write full-time now (well, as full-time as I can manage juggling my kids!) amid the raw beauty of the northern Utah mountains.

Even though I might not have dreamed of being a writer when I was younger, now I simply can't imagine my life any other way.

I love to hear from readers. You can reach me at my email address, raeannethayne@gmail.com


Monday, June 18, 2018

#BookBlitz & #Giveaway - Escape Forbidden by Ruth Silver


Escape Forbidden
Ruth Silver
(Aberrant Prequel)
Publication date: June 15th 2018
Genres: Dystopian, Young Adult
Fight to stay alive.
The Gravelands are a dangerous place.
In a world of uncertainty, Cora Manning knows one thing without a doubt: getting into Genesis will offer her a brighter future.
When the intake coordinator agrees to let her in because of her genetic makeup, Cora discovers the promised city of utopia is nothing like she imagined.
The rebellion has begun.
EXCERPT:
“Sit,” Noelle said and gestured toward the cot positioned on the floor.
Without much thought I wandered over and stretched out to lie down. Had it not been a trying day and with bombings outside, I’d have opted to go home or at the very least refused special treatment. That was what Noelle offered me, wasn’t it?
“You don’t have to stay here all night,” I said. It felt weird to be watched as I slept. “If I need anything, I can let you know. Or I mean, whoever stays.” I didn’t want to assume she wouldn’t go home either. I shut my eyes and relaxed against the cot. It wasn’t the most comfortable bed I’d been in, but it beat the straw in the barn.
“Toby and I will alternate, unless your fever breaks. Then we’ll both go home and let you sleep in peace.”
Hearing her words was enough to help me relax. “Okay,” I mumbled. If only I had the ability to control my own body temperature.
Noelle shut off the lights which helped ease the throbbing pulse behind my eyes. The distant wail of the siren ceased. Had it ended? Was everyone safe? I took momentary comfort in the quiet of Noelle’s office and allowed myself to fall asleep.
During the night, I heard the door whine and I attempted to roll over, only half cognizant of where I was. The cot groaned beneath me and I felt the warmth of metal against my cheek.
“Wake up, little girl,” an unfamiliar voice said, and I heard the distinctive click of the safety released from a gun.
My eyes flashed open, staring up at the intruder, the gun tight against my skin. How would I get out of this mess?


Author Bio:
Ruth Silver enjoys reading, traveling, writing, photography, boardgames, and playing with her dogs.
REFUGE FORBIDDEN (Aberrant Book 4) by Ruth Silver will be available June 29, 2018.
She also writes adult romance under the name Allison West.

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Friday, June 15, 2018

#BookBlitz & #Giveaway - When Time Stands Still by Sara Furlong Burr


When Time Stands Still
Sara Furlong Burr
Publication date: June 15th 2018
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
It’s been nearly a decade since Elle Sloan last saw Luke Hutchins. Close to ten years since she broke up with him over a single phone call, providing him with little explanation. Since the end of their relationship, Elle has done everything she could do to move on, marrying, proceeding forward with her life, almost allowing herself to completely forget about Luke.
Almost.
Out of nowhere, Elle receives a phone call from Luke’s mother. Luke has been in a horrific car accident and, a month later, has just awoken from a coma. However, instead of celebrating, his family is stunned to learn that Luke is suffering from amnesia and only remembers his life as it was before his breakup with Elle. Not wanting to tell Luke that he and Elle aren’t together anymore for fear it may compromise his recovery, Elle is asked by Luke’s family to come to the hospital to see him. Their hope is that she will slowly be able to jog his memory and cushion the blow.
Guilt-ridden over how their relationship ended, Elle readily agrees, finding herself transported back in time with Luke to the life they once shared and the future they could have had together.
EXCERPT:
I heard voices even before I stepped inside of the room. They were soft, but one by one, I was able to discern who was speaking. The first voice struck me like a freight train, catapulting me further back in time with each word he spoke. The second one made my heart skip a beat.
As I walked farther into the room, I saw another vision of my past sitting next to the hospital bed. His attention, at first, was entirely focused on the occupant in the bed, until movement from me diverted his attention to me. He locked eyes with me, surprise on his face quickly turning to an odd combination of contradiction. Anger, excitement, and suspicion all appeared to be waging war and were enough to give me whiplash just looking at him. Peter Monroe—or just Monroe, as he preferred to be called—had been Luke’s best friend since pretty much the dawn of each other’s existence. He’d aged. His boyish good looks had hardened into a man who would have been difficult to recognize to me, save for the same square chin, overly large nose, and mischievous eyes I had remembered so fondly.
Another step inside the room revealed a sight I had fought valiantly to keep from infiltrating my dreams for the last several years. Like Monroe, he didn’t notice my arrival at first, and I was grateful for that because the shock I was feeling at that moment would have undoubtedly transferred onto him. His head was turned, his eyes, from what I could see of them, were closed. Most of his features were facing Monroe, but from what little I could make out of them, he looked exactly how I remembered him. The rest of his body, however, was a different story.
His hair had begun to grow back after having obviously been recently shaved to prep him for surgery. On the side of his head that was visible to me, a bandage was secured to his scalp just above his ear and was wrapped around his head. Both of his legs had been broken and were secured with immobilizers, resembling large boots. He’d been through hell and back physically, and I feared he’d soon go through the same emotionally, all because of me.
Tears fell down my face before I even had the chance to realize they had formed. Not wanting Luke to see me upset, I dabbed my eyes with my sleeve and did my best to maintain my composure before he realized I was there. With a lump in my throat, I took a step closer to the bed, approaching it on the opposite side of Monroe. There another chair sat, which I was grateful for in the event my legs felt like they were going to give out on me. Monroe sat watching me expectantly, silently screaming at me to announce my presence and put an end to the torment Luke must have been going through since regaining consciousness.
Closing my eyes, I took a breath and spoke. “Luke.”


Author Bio:
Sara “Furlong” Burr was born and raised in Michigan and currently still lives there with her husband, two daughters, a high-strung Lab, and three judgmental cats. When she’s not writing, Sara enjoys reading, camping, spending time with her family, and attempting to paint while consuming more amaretto sours than she cares to admit.

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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Restaurant Review - Key Largo Fisheries Backyard Cafe

Yes, I know I generally review Books, but I just HAD to tell you about this great place the "locals" know about here in the Florida Keys. Hidden away, off the main road, you will find Key Largo Fisheries where the local folk go to buy fish when they are in the mood for seafood and didn't have much luck on the water that day.  They have some of the freshest fish you can find anywhere!  The store is clean and the people are friendly.  Just pick out what you want and they will even pack it in ice for you.  I went in to buy a couple of nice Yellowtail Snapper fillets to cook for dinner tonight.

Since it was around lunchtime, we decided to eat right there at the Key Largo Fisheries Backyard Cafe.  Great food in a typical "Keys" atmosphere.  You can come directly from your boat wearing your swimsuit and flipflops if you want to.  

You can even bring your dogs with you as long as they are well behaved (this applies to children as well).  I met this lady wearing a T-shirt that I absolutely fell in love with. (The T-shirt, not the lady.) For those who know me, you know that I am 100% for adopting rescue dogs instead of buying them.  Love this shirt!  Just goes to show what kind of people you will bump into here.

And speaking of nice ladies... when we went to place our order for lunch my hubby couldn't decide between pink lemonade and regular lemonade. Gabby, the cutie taking our order, gave him a taste of each one to help him make his decision.  Like I said, the people here at Key Largo Fisheries Backyard Cafe are super friendly.  

After picking out what you want to eat from the huge menu up on the wall, you tell Gabby or whoever is there taking orders at the window and then go find a seat until your food is ready... cooked up fresh while you wait.  


Enjoy the fresh air, watch the boats, and then dig into your delicious food! 

There are plenty of tables, but during the winter months when the tourists discover this place it can be hard to get in. I had one of their famous Lobster BLT's and OhMyGosh!  It was so good! I should have taken a picture when it was first served to me but it smelled so good I had to bite into it first!  So much lobster and yummy bacon on a big, fresh croissant.  How can you go wrong with both lobster AND bacon?  And with nice red ripe tomato and fresh lettuce with a special sauce. YUM!

Key Largo Fisheries Backyard Cafe is located at 1313 Ocean Bay Drive in Key Largo, Florida.  It sits right on the waterfront and is a delightful place to dig into some local cuisine.  Stop by and say hello to Gabby!

#KeyLargoFisheries, #BackyardCafe, #FloridaKeysGreatFood, #StillThinkingLobsterBLT

My Rating:  I give this one a definite 5 out of 5 wine glasses!




Tuesday, June 12, 2018

#BookBlitz & #Giveaway - Splash (Mermaid Royalty 3) by M.E. Rhines


Splash
M.E. Rhines
(Mermaid Royalty #3)
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: June 12th 2018
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Fawna is happy with the new life she has made for herself on land. She has her child and her youngest sister Pauline by her side—plus an amazing new human boyfriend named Randy. So when an old friend from Atargatis shows up, she immediately feels the weight of everything she stands to lose. But the news can’t be ignored – there’s been an attack on their kingdom; her aunt Myrtle is dead and her mother is missing. Angelique, their middle sister, is now ruling a kingdom to the north, leaving Fawna as the only royal left to help save Atargatis. Torn between responsibilities in two different worlds, the decision is made for her when the powerful sea witch who attacked the kingdom also takes Fawna’s son. Now she has no choice—to save her life on dry land, she’ll have to dive back into the ocean…
The final installment in the beloved Mermaid Royalty series, Splash is a heart-pounding fantasy romance that will have you feeling like you need to come up for air!
Grab book 1 – SINK – for FREE!
EXCERPT:
”And if you’d acted before you did, defied your mother and refused her order to kill him, do you believe you could’ve won?”
“Honestly? I don’t know. It doesn’t matter. For all we know we could’ve stopped it long before Gene. Aunt Margaret just kept telling us to be patient, that the catalyst would show itself. We rallied against my mother more because Pauline was in danger, not so much because of Eddie. To me, that was the ultimate incentive to proceed. Seeing her in danger was the reason we stood so strong together.”
“Maybe your aunt knew a human wasn’t a strong enough reason to fight such an epic war. I mean, you might’ve rallied behind Gene, but could you say the others in your resistance would? With everything Gilcrest has told you, you’ve got magic in you, Fawna. You stood a chance against your mother. Your aunt probably knew that.”
“You may be right, but it doesn’t matter. I’ve committed some terrible atrocities.”
“Because you were scared! You didn’t have a choice. I wasn’t even here and I can see that.” He clanged his knuckles against the cast iron frame of the cauldron. “You said you wanted to give this old heirloom a second chance, an opportunity to be used for good. Why can’t you give yourself that chance? Cut yourself a break.”
A smile cracked on my lips, and I shook my head in exasperation. “Why is it you always insist on seeing the good in me, even now when there’s none to be found?”
“There’s plenty of good in you, Fawna. If there wasn’t, you wouldn’t be so ready to risk your soul to rescue the ones you love the most.”
“There’s no talking any sense into you, is there?” I wrapped my arms around his torso, using his weight to anchor myself in place.
“Not a chance,” he grinned, planting a sweet kiss on my cheek. “I’m not going anywhere. It’s like I said before, Queen, my heart is yours and only yours. The sea is in my blood, always has been. Now I know why. I was meant for this life, down here with you and Sebastian. Don’t take it away from me because of a past you can’t outrun.”


Author Bio:
ME Rhines a southwest Florida native currently living in North Port with her two beautiful children and a third, much larger child whom she affectionately calls husband.
She writes young adult paranormal romance to feed her belief that fairy tales are real and
nonsense is necessary.
You can visit her on most major social media sites:
www.facebook.com/merhines
www.twitter.com/merhines
She also writes adult romances under her edgier alter-ego, Mary Bernsen.

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Monday, June 11, 2018

#BookReview - Unraveling an Enigma: Isaac's Story (Book 2 of the Enigma series) by Shandi Boyes

Title: Unraveling an Enigma: Isaac's Story (Book 2 of the Enigma series)
Author: Shandi Boyes
Genre: Adult Romance
Release Date: November 4, 2016


About the Book:
I've known for months that Isabelle was hiding something in her beautiful chocolate eyes. I just had no clue it was something so mammoth. Over the past five years, I’ve become accustomed to the vicious ploys some women undertake to capture my attention. The spilled drinks, the damsel in distress. Hell, I’ve even been propositioned with money from wealthy business associates in my industry just for the chance of occupying my bed for one night. 

But Isabelle was by far the most elaborate ruse I’ve ever come across. The woman that invades my every waking thought is an undercover FBI Agent. A stringent ruse to pry me of privy information that no one outside of my inner circle has access to. 

I’ll give it to her, though. She performed well. She played me like a f*cking fiddle.

Only now, after being arrested by Isabelle, do I realize that all of my assumptions and thoughts I had compiled on her have been terribly inaccurate. I don’t really know her at all. She is practically a stranger.

Or she will soon become one.

Book 2 in a four book series.

Author Warning: This book contains open door sex scenes, adult references, swear words and adult scenes. This book is only recommended for 18+ readers. It is part of a series, not recommended as a standalone. The entire series is available.
Buy Links: Amazon 

My Review:
I just finished reading Book 1 of this series and I absolutely HAD to grab Book #2.  Gotta say, however, that I'm really frustrated that I now need to go grab Book #3.  Dang! Another cliffhanger! I love a series, but much prefer some sense of closure with each book.

UNRAVELING AN ENIGMA is Book #2 of a four-book series and it looks like I will need to read all four books.  I'm definitely NOT fond of cliffhanger books because I hate feeling like I have to buy more and more books just to find out what happens.  But this series is just so dang good that I can't stop reading! Thank goodness that right now these books are available on Kindle Unlimited with the Audible book at a discounted price.  Not sure how long that deal will last, but right now it's pretty good.

Book #2 starts out with Isaac's point of view, rehashing some of the events from Book #1. Will Isaac ever be able to forgive Izzy?  Will Izzy be able to clear her name? This book is a thriller, so I can't go into all the details about the story without giving away spoilers. We do see more of Brandon (Izzy's fellow FBI agent), and Hugo (Isaac's driver and body guard) in this book and we are also more closely introduced to Hunter (Isaac's head of security).  These characters work so well together!  Great writing!
  

My Rating:

About the Author:
Shandi Boyes lives in Queensland, Australia, in a coastal community with her husband and children. She's been an avid reader for many years and discovered the love of writing in February 2016. Her first penned novel 'Perception of Life’ is a modern new adult rockstar romance that will have you sitting on the edge of your seat until the very last word. In September 2016, her focus shifted to hot alpha men in steamy contemporary reads that sizzle off the pages. Shandi’s penned novel ‘Enigma of Life’ is an award-winning story on FBI agent and the subject she was signed to investigate. Her men are swoon-worthy, devoted, and alpha; and her heroines are strong-willed, determined, and loveable. You should consider starting her stories first thing in the morning or you may not sleep.

You will laugh and you will cry, but Shandi's characters will stay with you for a lifetime! 

Join my newsletter: http://eepurl.com/cyEzNv
Facebook page: 
https://www.facebook.com/Authorshandi



SERIES ORDER:

Enigma of Life (Isaac #1) 
Unraveling an Enigma (Isaac #2)
Enigma: The Mystery Unmasked (Isaac #3)
Enigma: The Final Chapter (conclusion of Isaac's story #4)
Beneath the Secrets (Hugo #1)
Beneath the Sheets (Hugo #2)
Spy Thy Neighbor (Hunter)
The Opposite Effect (Brax)
I Married a Mob Boss (Enrique)
Second Shot (Hawke)


Sunday, June 10, 2018

#BookReview - Enigma of Life (Book 1 of the Enigma Series) by Shandi Boyes

Title: Enigma of Life
Author: Shandi Boyes
Genre: Adult Romance
Release Date: September 26, 2016


About the Book:
Dominant, Sexy, Alpha & 100% Off Limits.

A spine-chillingly delicious story on a rookie FBI Agent and the target she was assigned to investigate. After a chance meeting, Isabelle was falling at Isaac Holt's feet--literally. His magnetizing allure, heart-stopping features, and enigmatic personality sets her pulse racing, but no matter how much Izzy craves Isaac's touch, she can't have him. Morally and ethically, he is off limits. He is the enemy.

Her astute brain understands this, but her lust-driven heart needs a little more convincing. Join a fast-paced story based on forbidden love. Can two people on opposing sides of the team work together for love? Or will outsider influences force their cart off the tracks before the fireworks truly begin?

This is a story about two people NOT destined to be together. This is not your typical love story. Not everything is black and white: there is a whole heap of gray no one pays any attention to.

Author Warning: This book contains open door sex scenes, adult references, swear words and adult scenes. This book is only recommended for 18+ readers. It is part of a series, not recommended as a standalone. The entire series is available.
Buy Links: Amazon 

My Review:
I ordered this book on KU, but needing something to occupy my time on my 5-hour drive to Cocoa Beach, I ordered the Audible version as well. Good choice! It certainly kept my mind occupied as I drove! When I reached my destination I didn't want to stop listening and could hardly wait for my trip back home so that I could see what happens.  I was a bit disappointed that I was left with a cliffhanger.  I will definitely be purchasing the next book in this series so that I can find out what happens!

This book has such a great story line.  Female FBI agent bumps into a gorgeous hunk of a man at the airport and they hit it off beautifully.  She later finds out that he's the target of a major FBI investigation. Isabelle's fascination with this man is undeniable and the sexual attraction between these two is hot. Really. Really. Hot.

As the relationship between Izzy and Isaac grows, she is convinced that his involvement with the mob is not what the FBI thinks, and she tries to keep her involvement with Isaac Holt a secret from her fellow agents.  This is a relationship that should not happen, but the reader can't help but cheer for these two.

Shandi Boyes is a new author to me, but one I plan to follow now that I've read this book.  Her writing is intriguing and her characters are multi-faceted and likeable.. or hateable as the situation may be.  Great adult-only book.  

My Rating:

About the Author:
Shandi Boyes lives in Queensland, Australia, in a coastal community with her husband and children. She's been an avid reader for many years and discovered the love of writing in February 2016. Her first penned novel 'Perception of Life’ is a modern new adult rockstar romance that will have you sitting on the edge of your seat until the very last word. In September 2016, her focus shifted to hot alpha men in steamy contemporary reads that sizzle off the pages. Shandi’s penned novel ‘Enigma of Life’ is an award-winning story on FBI agent and the subject she was signed to investigate. Her men are swoon-worthy, devoted, and alpha; and her heroines are strong-willed, determined, and loveable. You should consider starting her stories first thing in the morning or you may not sleep.

You will laugh and you will cry, but Shandi's characters will stay with you for a lifetime! 

Join my newsletter: http://eepurl.com/cyEzNv
Facebook page: 
https://www.facebook.com/Authorshandi



SERIES ORDER:

Enigma of Life (Isaac #1) 
Unraveling an Enigma (Isaac #2)
Enigma: The Mystery Unmasked (Isaac #3)
Enigma: The Final Chapter (conclusion of Isaac's story #4)
Beneath the Secrets (Hugo #1)
Beneath the Sheets (Hugo #2)
Spy Thy Neighbor (Hunter)
The Opposite Effect (Brax)
I Married a Mob Boss (Enrique)
Second Shot (Hawke)


 

The Novel Lady Published @ 2014 by Ipietoon