Friday, July 14, 2017

Blog Tour: Excerpt and Review for "Wicked Grind" by J. Kenner


Sometimes it feels so damn good to be bad

Photographer Wyatt Royce’s career is on the verge of exploding. All he needs is one perfect model to be the centerpiece of his sexy, controversial show. Find her, and Wyatt is sure to have a winner.

Then Kelsey Draper walks in. Stunning. Vibrant. And far too fragile for a project like this. Wyatt should know—after all, he remembers only too well why their relationship ended all those years ago.

Determined to break free from her good girl persona, Kelsey wants spice. Adventure. And she’s certain that Wyatt is just the man to help.

But when Wyatt agrees to give her the job only if he has complete control—on camera and in his bed—Kelsey can’t help but wonder if she’s in too deep. Because how can a good girl like her ever be enough for a man like Wyatt?

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She was driving him crazy.
The way she held his eyes while she moved, so bold and flirtatious, as if she was just daring him to pull her into his arms and kiss her senseless.
Daring him? No, strike that. She wasn’t just daring him, she was throwing down a goddamned gauntlet. But was she challenging him to claim her? Or was she goading him that he couldn’t have her?
Damned if he knew. Right then, Wyatt was certain of only one thing—his body was tight, his cock was hard, and he wanted to be somewhere other than here. Someplace without other people.
Someplace with a bed.
It was the dancing that did it. Because Kelsey Draper and her dancing had always been his downfall. After all, that was what had started everything all those years ago. He’d seen her dancing to a bouncy pop song, her interpretation elevating the music and lyrics. He’d seen passion and precision, sensuality and seduction. She’d enchanted him. Cast a spell over him.
He’d seen the magic in her, so much larger than the quiet, subdued girl he’d met before. The Kelsey he’d watched dancing had surprised him. She was vibrant. Alive. Unexpected.
He’d fallen hard, and then she’d broken his heart.
He wouldn’t make the same mistake again.
He might want her—hell, he <em>did</em> want her. For his bed. For his show.
But he damn sure wasn’t going to trust her. He’d already learned that lesson, and he really didn’t need a refresher course.
As he watched, she dropped to the floor, then used one hand to rip open her shirt before letting it fall down her arms. She writhed on stage, her seductive movements making him ache inside, all the more when he imagined taking it further. Her wrists bound not with a tattered blouse, but with silk ropes. And not just her wrists, but her legs as well. Red ropes, the only color in an otherwise black and white image. Her body twisting, and the audience unsure if she was fighting the bonds or reveling in her own rising passion.
She was exactly what he needed for the show. The complete package. Hell, he’d known that from the moment she’d walked into his studio.
So why was he hesitating?
Because he wanted her?
Or was it because he wanted to punish her?
Or maybe it was even more insidious than that. Maybe it came down to how much was riding on this show. It was his shot, after all. The apex of all his work and sacrifice. The chance to escape from under the black cloud his father had left hanging over him.
The chance to prove himself to his family.
To live up to the goddamn Segel name.
But that would only happen if the show was a success.
So maybe that was why he was hesitating. Because the moment he committed was the moment the truth crept toward him on little cat paws, and it would either curl up and purr, or rip his heart out.
On stage, Kelsey rose, then did some sort of pirouette, twirling as she pulled off one of those transparent, colored scarves that served as a barely-there skirt. Wyatt imagined his hands on her waist, the brush of her skin against his palms as she spun. He could imagine her heat. The way she shivered under his touch.
So help him, he wanted that. Wanted to hear her sighs. Those little moans he remembered.
Another scarf went flying, and he straightened so that he was no longer leaning against the pillar. Instead, he shifted his weight from foot to foot as he tried to tamp down the rising lust. The violent need. To not only have her, but to have her in his show.
He wanted her, yes. But she was an indulgence he couldn’t justify. An indulgence and a risk, because he knew damn well that she’d run if things got too intense.
And damn but his show was intense. That was the point, after all.
He couldn’t take a chance on her, no matter how much he might want to. Couldn’t even bring her in only long enough to test her out. Not on such a tight schedule. Not when there was no way to ensure that she wouldn’t bolt.
Kelsey was a risk he simply couldn’t take. He had to get it right. There was too much at stake for him to be wrong about her.
The final scarf fluttered to the ground, and Wyatt’s pulse pounded in his throat as he moved closer, his mouth going dry as she reached for her bra, pulled it over her head, then tossed it aside.
The music faded out, and the dim, colored stage lights made the flesh-colored G-string blend into her pale skin, enhancing the illusion that she now stood before the entire room not just topless, but one hundred percent, birthday-suit naked.
She took a bow as the lights came up, and the men in the audience actually stood to applaud her. She’d blown away the competition, and even though Wyatt wanted to rush the stage and wrap his jacket around her, he couldn’t deny the swell of pride he felt for her victory.

J.Kenner (aka Julie Kenner) is the New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, Wall Street Journal and #1 International bestselling author of over seventy novels, novellas and short stories in a variety of genres. Though known primarily for her award-winning and international bestselling erotic romances (including the Stark and Most Wanted series) that have reached as high as #2 on the New York Times bestseller list, JK has been writing full time for over a decade in a variety of genres including paranormal and contemporary romance, “chicklit” suspense, urban fantasy, and paranormal mommy lit. JK has been praised by Publishers Weekly as an author with a “flair for dialogue and eccentric characterizations” and by RT Bookclub for having “cornered the market on sinfully attractive, dominant antiheroes and the women who swoon for them.” A five time finalist for Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA award, JK took home the first RITA trophy awarded in the category of erotic romance in 2014 for her novel, Claim Me (book 2 of her Stark Trilogy). Her Demon Hunting Soccer Mom series (as Julie Kenner) is currently in development with AwesomenessTV/Awestruck. Her books have sold over three million copies and are published in over twenty languages. In her previous career as an attorney, JK worked as a clerk on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and practiced primarily civil, entertainment and First Amendment litigation in Los Angeles and Irvine, California, as well as in Austin, Texas. She currently lives in Central Texas, with her husband, two daughters, and two rather spastic cats. 

Thank you to the publisher and author for the free review copy in exchange for my honest opinion.

I really enjoyed my time with this book! I've only read one other title by J. Kenner, but her writing is such that I can see myself going back and reading some of her other books in the future.

What's to love? Quite a few things, actually. I liked the second chance trope here - it worked really well for the most part. By going back and forth between the present and the past, I was able to see the deep connection between Wyatt and Kelsey, evident from their very first meeting. I was also quite involved in finding out why two such kindred spirits were separated in the first place - the pages seemed to rush by as I devoured this book, trying to solve the mystery, and while I had my suspicions, things actually went down a little bit differently than I first imagined!

The characters themselves were quite unique, and their personalities pulled me further into their story. Wyatt, while not exactly my type, was charismatic and artistic in an interesting way. I liked how he wanted to build his own success without resting on the laurels of his famous family, and while some of his actions made me cringe, they always made sense in the context of his character.  

Likewise, Kelsey also intrigued me. I loved how passionate she was about her dancing, but I could also understand the conflicts she was facing in her life. The guilt she felt, too, was not completely unfounded. I think in her shoes, I would be feeling the same way she did, and that just made her all the more relatable to me.  

I need to take a moment here to just say that occasionally, a side character comes along in a book that I feel particularly partial to, and I find myself wanting to beg the author to please, pretty please, write that character's story!!!  In "Wicked Grind", that character was Kelsey's brother, Griffin. He stole my heart more than any other character in this book, and I would like to declare right this minute that I would be the first in line to buy his book if ever J. Kenner decided to write it!

Okay, enough of a digression there, back to the book review at hand. Of course, hardly any book is without its faults, and "Wicked Grind" is no exception, although my complaints are fairly minor. First off is perhaps due to my own expectations: I thought this book would be more erotic, to be honest. It really wasn't all that steamy! A good chunk of the book takes place in the past, when Wyatt and Kelsey were teenagers, and while I appreciated the buildup of the relationship, I definitely wasn't getting all hot and bothered. With the present timeline, again there was that buildup of tension, but things didn't really get going until about 60%.  For a book of this genre, the slow burn was a bit too slow for my liking.

A couple of other niggling details:
  • The title - what does "Wicked Grind" even mean? It's not that I dislike the title, exactly, it's just that there was absolutely no connection to the story that I could see.

  • The cover - I like the colour scheme and the fonts that were used, but not a fan of the lipstick, sorry. 

Overall, I liked this book and would probably be tempted to pick up others in the series, especially if one of them featured Griffin!

My rating: 3.5 stars

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

"All or Nothing at All" by Jennifer Probst: Teaser Reveal!!!

Today we are sharing some teasers for ALL OR NOTHING AT ALL by Jennifer Probst. This is the third novel in the Billionaire Builders series, and it will be released on July 25th! Be sure to enter the pre-order giveaway where you could win a $50 gift card or signed set of the series.

Pre-order Now

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All or Nothing at All by Jennifer Probst

(Billionaire Builders, #3)

Coming July 25th!


HGTV’s Property Brothers meets The Marriage Bargain in this third volume in the Billionaire Builders series, an all-new, heart-wrenching, and sexy contemporary romance from New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Probst.

Tristan Pierce left the family business to carve out a life of his own, but never forgot his passionate affair with the much younger, inexperienced Sydney Greene, or the hurtful breakup that tore him apart. When he’s forced to return home and face his past, will he be able to carve out a future, or will lies ruin his second chance at love?

Sydney Greene loved Tristan her entire life but when he left, he took not only her heart, but her trust along with him. Now that they’re together again, it’s time they both face the biggest secret of all...


Pre-order Now

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Jennifer Probst 
Jennifer Probst - Bio: Jennifer Probst wrote her first book at twelve years old. She bound it in a folder, read it to her classmates, and hasn’t stopped writing since. She took a short hiatus to get married, get pregnant, buy a house, get pregnant again, pursue a master’s in English Literature, and rescue two shelter dogs. Now she is writing again. She makes her home in Upstate New York with the whole crew. Her sons keep her active, stressed, joyous, and sad her house will never be truly clean. She is the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of sexy and erotic contemporary romance. She was thrilled her book, The Marriage Bargain, was ranked #6 on Amazon's Best Books for 2012. She loves hearing from readers. Visit her website for updates on new releases and her street team at


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Monday, July 10, 2017

Review: "Coming Up for Air" by Miranda Kenneally

Swim. Eat. Shower. School. Snack. Swim. Swim. Swim. Dinner. Homework. Bed. Repeat. All of Maggie’s focus and free time is spent swimming. She’s not only striving to earn scholarships—she’s training to qualify for the Olympics. It helps that her best friend, Levi, is also on the team and cheers her on. But Levi’s already earned an Olympic try out, so she feels even more pressure to succeed. And it’s not until Maggie’s away on a college visit that she realizes how much of the “typical” high school experience she’s missed by being in the pool. Not one to shy away from a challenge, Maggie decides to squeeze the most out of her senior year. First up? Making out with a guy. And Levi could be the perfect candidate. After all, they already spend a lot of time together. But as Maggie slowly starts to uncover new feelings for Levi, how much is she willing to lose to win?

Many thanks to Sourcebooks Fire via Netgalley for the free review copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
Another winner from Miranda Kenneally! This one has all the elements you know and love from her Hundred Oaks series: a strong, feisty heroine working through an internal struggle, great friendships, cameos from some of the well-loved characters we've met earlier in the series, and an amazingly swoony love interest. What more could a fan ask for?

I loved Maggie's struggles in this book. (Oh yeah, and the seriously embarrassing moments she has put a huge grin on my face while reading!)  She's got a few things weighing on her mind, including but not limited to:

  1. an intense rivalry with an ex-teammate and the online bullying she's subjected to
  2. occasionally driving a car, which she is extremely horrible at!
  3. college, mainly how she's going to miss her friends when they all go to different schools
  4. getting some experience with boys, and how to do such a thing when she has no time to start a relationship
  5. trying to improve her times so she can get herself to the Olympic trials, and
  6. dealing with her changing feelings for her best friend, Levi.
I absolutely loved Maggie's friendship with Levi! It was somewhat reminiscent of Jordan and Sam from "Catching Jordan", which is further emphasized when Jordan, or Coach Woods as she's now known at Hundred Oaks High, gives Maggie some advice about balancing her heavy training schedule with a social life, namely, dating. Maggie and Levi spend almost all of their time together, and have since they were little kids, so they're super comfortable with each other. Honestly, there's not much I would have changed about their relationship or their story. If anything, I just wanted more!

If you're not already a Kenneally reader, then you seriously need to remedy that right away. All of her books are great, and I'd be hard pressed to pick a favourite, but "Coming Up for Air" is definitely one of my top picks!

My rating: 4.5 stars

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Review: "Once and for All" by Sarah Dessen

As bubbly as champagne and delectable as wedding cake, Once and for All, Sarah Dessen's thirteenth novel, is set in the world of wedding planning, where crises are routine. Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that's why she's cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm's length. But Ambrose isn't about to be discouraged, now that he's met the one girl he really wants. Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humor, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself.

Many thanks to Penguin Young Readers Group via Netgalley for the free review copy in exchange for my honest opinion.
I was sooooo excited to have my wish granted through Netgalley and receive a copy of this book to review!  I've only read two other Dessen titles - one I rated two stars, and one I rated four - but I've been wanting to read more as I'm on a bit of a contemporary YA kick.  I was hoping "Once and For All" would give me some sweet swoony times and a storyline with a bit of meat to it, and for the most part, I'd say this book delivered just that.

Starting with Louna, I would say she's introverted, not necessarily shy but not overly outgoing either. She's very cautious romantically, being brought up surrounded by her mother's and William's attitudes - not exactly flattering to men!  (On a bit of a sidebar, I am not loving her name, and here's why: I had a great aunt in Australia, who I never actually met, and her name was "Luna". My mom said she was "crazy" and whenever I hear that name, I think of "Loony Luna"! It's a good thing this book is told in first person, so I didn't have to read Louna's name on the page very often, otherwise I'd be thinking "Loony Louna" the whole way through!)  

Ambrose is pretty much Louna's exact opposite. He seems hyper to me - maybe he has ADHD? He's definitely annoying, but he knows it and kind of owns it. He's charismatic, charming, spontaneous, caring, and pays attention. All great things, but Louna doesn't trust the chemistry between them because he flirts with EVERYONE! Everyone loves him, and he loves everyone, too, so why should Louna be the special one who wins his heart? I don't blame her one bit for being apprehensive about him.

And then there's Louna's backstory. Oh my goodness, so heartbreaking! I was really surprised at how the flashbacks pulled me in so much. Dessen unfolds everything so gradually, I was turning the pages frantically to find out what really happened, and, well, sigh. Things sucked, I'll say that much. Can't give anything more away, because spoilers, but I hated what happened there, ugh.

Back to Louna and Ambrose. They start off as...well, I was going to say friends, but it was really less than that. Let's just say they were forced to work together, and eventually, they did become friends. Then comes the bet: Louna will try dating freely, as freely as Ambrose does, at least three dates a week, for two months (I think). Ambrose will try the opposite: date one girl exclusively for two months. The person to win the bet gets to choose the next date for the other. I remember thinking that the terms of this bet would be equally difficult for both to stick to: Louna hasn't gone on a date in a year, for reasons that soon become apparent, and Ambrose has never dated a girl more than two or three times, if memory serves.  Maybe neither of them would succeed! I guess you'll just have to read "Once and for All" yourself to see how things work out.

Oh, and one more thing I loved about this book: the weddings! I remember planning my own wedding, and thinking that being a wedding planner would possibly be the best job in the world. That far fetched dream never came to fruition, and after reading this book, I'm rather glad it didn't - seems a bit more stressful than I'd envisioned! But if you've ever wondered what that type of job would be like, or if you are just a fan of weddings in general, than you won't be disappointed with this title. 

My rating:  

Release Week Blitz: "Easy Nights" by Kristen Proby Exclusive Excerpt and Giveaway!!!


From New York Times Bestselling author Kristen Proby, comes a steamy and passionate friends-to-lovers romance—EASY NIGHTS! The sixth standalone title in the Boudreaux Series, Savannah and Ben’s highly anticipated story is now available on all retailers! Grab your copy today!


About EASY NIGHTS (Boudreaux Series #6):

The Boudreaux Series—Sexy. Intriguing. Easy.

No one said change was easy…

Savannah Boudreaux knows what it is to hurt. To bleed. To be afraid that the man she’s promised to be true to until “death do us part” might in fact separate them far sooner than anyone had ever anticipated. But Van also knows what it is to survive. To move on. To live life to the fullest. With five brothers and sisters and a loving mother as her constant source of strength during the pain and the healing, Van realizes there is little else she needs.

But some things never change…

Benjamin Preston sat on the sidelines of the Boudreaux family for years, in love with a woman he couldn’t have. As the best friend of the Boudreaux brothers since childhood, Ben has seen both tragedies and joys in the family. And as a former MMA fighter and KravMaga expert, Ben’s used to fighting for what he wants—and winning. His hands were tied when Savannah married her high school sweetheart not long after graduation, but now two years have passed since Ben found Savannah broken in her own home.

Sometimes what you need most has been right in front of you the whole time…

Van’s convinced that happiness isn’t in the cards for her, no matter how right it feels to be in Ben’s strong arms—and his bed. Ben is determined to win her heart and fight for her trust. He’s promised to protect her, to be her friend. But more than anything, he wants to finally make her his, and this is one fight he’s not willing to lose.


Pick up your copy of EASY NIGHTS today!


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And don’t miss the first standalone titles in the Boudreaux Series!

EASY LOVE-FREE for a limited time only EASY CHARM-$.99 for a limited time only EASY MELODY-$1.99 for a limited time only EASY KISSES EASY FOR KEEPS: A Boudreaux Novella EASY MAGIC



We turn a corner and there it is, my favorite tree. It’s at least four hundred years old, with branches so big and heavy that they rest on the ground.

And under it is a portable swing with a red blanket spread in front of it.

“Oh, my.”

He smiles down at me and leads me to the swing. I sit and kick my flip flops off, and Ben sets the basket in the middle of the blanket and joins me on the swing.

“This is lovely.”

“It’s a good day for it,” he says and rests his arm on the back of the swing, behind my shoulders. His fingertips brush the bare skin on my shoulder. I scoot closer to him and rest my head on his shoulder.

“We spent countless summers out here,” he says quietly, as if speaking too loud will disrupt the perfect spring day.

“We did.”

“And as a teenager, I would see you sitting out here, under this tree, with a book. Your knees pulled up to your chest, and your bare feet dirty as can be. You took my breath away even then.”

I glance up at him in surprise.

“I can’t tell you how often I’d watch you—not in a creepy way, I might add—I’d watch you reading and enjoying this tree, and I wanted so badly to sit with you and kiss you senseless.”

“I didn’t know that.”

“Of course you didn’t,” he says with a gentle smile. “But now you do.”

He nudges my chin up with his fingers and lowers his lips to mine, covering them softly. I cup his face in my hand and let myself simply soak in the moment, in my favorite place, with this man.

He slowly takes the kiss from sweet to hot, and to my delight, drags his hand from my hip to my breast, his thumb dancing over my already tight nipple.

Good God, he’s like a drug that I’ll never get tired of.

After what seems like an hour, he pulls back and rests his forehead against mine.

“I have been waiting for that for a very long time,” he whispers.

“I think this was probably way better than anything you might have done as a teenager.”

He chuckles. “Ture. So, it’s a win-win.”

I let my fingertips glide down his cheeks to his neck.



“I want you,” he says and closes his eyes tightly. “I don’t say that to rush you into anything, and this isn’t the time or place anyway, but I need you to know that I want you.”

I cover his lips with mine, watching his eyes. “I want you too, Ben.”

He inhales and kisses me again, moving straight into hot as fuck.

Finally, he pulls back, clears his throat, and smiles at me.

“Are you hungry?”

I laugh and push my hair off my face. “So hungry.”

“I think Gabby made fried chicken.”

“That sounds good too.”

About Kristen Proby:   New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Kristen Proby is the author of the bestselling With Me In Seattle and Love Under the Big Sky series. She has a passion for a good love story and strong, humorous characters with a strong sense of loyalty and family. Her men are the alpha type; fiercely protective and a bit bossy, and her ladies are fun, strong, and not afraid to stand up for themselves.   Kristen lives in Montana, where she enjoys coffee, chocolate and sunshine. And naps.            

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Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Cover Reveal: "Wicked Dirty" and "Wicked Torture" by J. Kenner


Sometimes bad isn’t good enough…

On the outside, Lyle Tarpin is a clean-cut Hollywood actor whose star is on the rise. Inside, he’s battling his own demons, shunning relationships and finding solace in the arms of a string of anonymous women paid very well for their discretion.

But when he’s photographed in a compromising position by an over-eager reporter, the only way to save his career is to say that the woman he was with is his fiancĂ©e. And now Lyle has to play a very public game with the only woman who’s ever managed to get under his skin.

Struggling waitress Sugar Laine agrees to spend one night with Lyle—but only because she’s desperate to save her family home. She never expects that a night of passion will turn into a pretend engagement … or that the heat between them will blossom into love.

But sometimes love has a price.

And now the only question is—can Lyle and Sugar afford to pay it?



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Outwardly, Noah Carter is riding high as the tech world’s hottest new genius. Inside, he’s still reeling from the abduction of his wife and baby daughter eight years ago, and then the devastating discovery of his child’s body. For years, he kept up hope that his wife was alive, but now that she’s been declared legally dead, he’s thrown himself even more deeply into his work, cutting himself off from emotional ties because they just hurt too damn much.

Then he meets Kiki Porter, an eternal optimist with a killer work ethic and dreams of fronting a band. And everything changes. Even though he tries his damnedest to fight it…

Sexually, they are combustible together. But their true fire is emotional, though it is a slow to burn. But once it lights, it is all consuming. The relationship grows emotionally, the sex is hot, things are good.

But just when it’s looking like they might have a real future together, the past comes back to haunt them. And Noah’s going to have to decide what he’s willing to give up for love …


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Julie - J Kenner Author Photo
J.Kenner (aka Julie Kenner) is the New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, Wall Street Journal and #1 International bestselling author of over seventy novels, novellas and short stories in a variety of genres.
Though known primarily for her award-winning and international bestselling erotic romances (including the Stark and Most Wanted series) that have reached as high as #2 on the New York Times bestseller list, JK has been writing full time for over a decade in a variety of genres including paranormal and contemporary romance, “chicklit” suspense, urban fantasy, and paranormal mommy lit.
JK has been praised by Publishers Weekly as an author with a “flair for dialogue and eccentric characterizations” and by RT Bookclub for having “cornered the market on sinfully attractive, dominant antiheroes and the women who swoon for them.” A five time finalist for Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA award, JK took home the first RITA trophy awarded in the category of erotic romance in 2014 for her novel, Claim Me (book 2 of her Stark Trilogy). Her Demon Hunting Soccer Mom series (as Julie Kenner) is currently in development with AwesomenessTV/Awestruck.
Her books have sold over three million copies and are published in over twenty languages.
In her previous career as an attorney, JK worked as a clerk on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and practiced primarily civil, entertainment and First Amendment litigation in Los Angeles and Irvine, California, as well as in Austin, Texas. She currently lives in Central Texas, with her husband, two daughters, and two rather spastic cats.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Release Day Excerpt! "Lost and Found Sisters" by Jill Shalvis


From New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis comes her first women’s fiction novel—an unforgettable story of friendship, love, family, and sisterhood—perfect for fans of Colleen Hoover, Susan Mallery, and Kristan Higgins. Don't miss LOST AND FOUND SISTERS and grab your copy today!


They say life can change in an instant…

After losing her sister in a devastating car accident, chef Quinn Weller is finally getting her life back on track. She appears to have it all: a loving family, a dream job in one of L.A.’s hottest eateries, and a gorgeous boyfriend dying to slip an engagement ring on her finger. So why does she feel so empty, like she’s looking for a missing piece she can’t find?

The answer comes when a lawyer tracks down Quinn and reveals a bombshell secret and a mysterious inheritance that only she can claim. This shocking revelation washes over Quinn like a tidal wave. Her whole life has been a lie.

On impulse, Quinn gives up her job, home, and boyfriend. She heads up the coast to the small hometown of Wildstone, California, which is just a few hours north, but feels worlds apart from Los Angeles. Though she doesn’t quite fit in right away, she can’t help but be drawn to the town’s simple pleasures…and the handsome, dark-haired stranger who offers friendship with no questions asked.

As Quinn settles into Wildstone, she discovers there’s another surprise in store for her. The inheritance isn’t a house or money, but rather something earth shattering, something that will make her question everything she thought she knew about herself, about her family. Now with a world of possibilities opening up to Quinn, she must decide if this new life is the one she was always meant to have—and the one that could finally give her the fulfillment she’s searched so long for.


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Coop whined and Mick looked down at the twelve-year-old golden retriever, ball in his mouth. Coop panted happily and dropped the ball at Mick’s feet, his rheumy brown eyes ever hopeful.
Mick shook his head. “Last time I threw it, you decided you didn’t mean it.”
Coop gave a talkative “woo woo woo.”
Translation: Mick was full of shit. “I had to go get it myself,” he reminded the dog. “Remember that?”
This bought him another “woo woo woo.”
“Okay, okay.” Mick picked up the ball, and because there was a lot of old-man dog pride on the line here, he gave it a dramatic throw, making sure it went only about twenty feet.
Coop gave an energetic leap. A single energetic leap. After that, he eyeballed the sea of sand ahead of him, huffed out a sigh, and sat. Then he craned his big, fuzzy golden head and gave Mick a sad-eyed look.
“Are you kidding me?” Mick asked him.
Coop lay down, set his head on his front paws, and stared forlornly out at the ball that his brain wanted to chase but his sore joints and tired body wouldn’t allow. It was a daily reminder for the dog, who in his own mind clearly wasn’t elderly, forgetful, or more than half deaf. Nope, in Coop’s opinion, he was still a rambunctious, energetic puppy.
Mick blew out a sigh and fetched the damn ball. When he came back, the dog sat up, eyes bright, tongue lolling.
“Not a chance,” Mick said on a laugh. “I’m not throwing it again. This was about your exercise, not mine. I already had my run today.”
A Lexus pulled up. A woman sat behind the wheel and stared out at the dunes and the ocean. All Mick could see of her was a cloud of whiskey-colored waves of hair and a pale face. She stared at the water and then set her head to the steering wheel and banged it a few times.
Then, head still down, she went utterly still.
Coop whined about the ball and nudged Mick’s knee, eyes pleading.
With a head shake, Mick threw the ball five feet.
Coop happily pounced on it.
While his dog pranced around proudly, ball in his mouth, Mick turned back to the car. The woman hadn’t moved. Had she knocked herself out? Was she still breathing? “What do you think?” he asked Coop. “Stay out of it, or ask her if she’s okay?”
Coop, who’d never been impressed by a single one of the women in Mick’s social life, yawned.
“Right,” he said. “Stay out of it.”
But the woman suddenly sat up straight and fumbled her way out of the car, falling to her knees on the rough gravelly asphalt, gulping in air like she was suffocating.
Realizing she was hyperventilating, Mick rushed to her and crouched at her side, having to push Coop back from making her acquaintance—which he tended to do with a rude nose push to the crotch. “Stay,” he ordered and looked the woman over.
Young. Late twenties maybe. Definitely having a panic attack of some kind. Not touching her, he spoke quietly and calmly. “Take a deep breath through your nose.”
She had to quiet herself to hear him, but she did as he said. She took a deep breath, shuddery as it was.
“Good,” he said, still holding Coop back from trying to say hello. “Stay.”
“What?” she gasped.
“Sorry, not you. My nosy-ass dog. Keep breathing. That’s it,” he said when she worked at it.
When she had it under control, she met his gaze, her own eyes hooded and clearly embarrassed. “I’m sorry.”
“Don’t be.”
Coop, tired of being held back, shoved his big old head between them and licked her from chin to forehead. Mick palmed the dog’s face and pushed his head away from the woman whose shoulders were now shaking.
Aw, hell. He patted his pockets—for what, he had no idea. It wasn’t like he carried tissues or napkins on him to offer her. He rose to his feet to go search the truck, which was when she lifted her face and he saw that she was shaking with laughter, not tears.
She was laughing at his ridiculous dog.

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

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