Monday, November 19, 2018

Release Day, Excerpt and Giveaway! "More Than This" by Shannyn Schroeder

It’s the release day for Shannyn Schroeder’s MORE THAN THIS! Check it out and grab your copy of this sexy new release today!


Author: Shannyn Schroeder

Genre: Contemporary Romance

About More Than This:

A sexy bartender stirs up a daily lesson plan for an adventurous teacher... When she discovers her ex-husband is about to be a father, Quinn Adams is on a mission. Determined to get pregnant without the commitment of a man, Quinn sets out for her own adventure. But everyone seems to think she need to focus on herself first. With a list of challenges compiled but her sister and their friend, Quinn embarks on some life-altering fun. Her first challenge is to go on five dates within two weeks. After a few disastrous attempts, Quinn’s ready to give up—until sexy bartender Ryan O’Leary offers his assistance. Ryan is the go-to person for everyone in his large family, so it’s natural for him to want to help Quinn. However, as they get to know each other better, friendship with Quinn isn’t enough for him. Now, it’s time for him to show her how serious the Irish can be. Will the bartender quench Quinn’s thirst by mixing up more than she ever imagined?

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Exclusive Excerpt:

Quinn stood outside her loft, wishing that she’d been smart enough to meet this guy at the restaurant, if that’s what you could call it. It had barely been a step up from fast food. Now he stood in front of her, still talking about himself, when all she wanted to do was curl up on the couch with a good book. This is what she got for picking a guy based on his online profile. Next time she’d make sure she had at least a phone conversation before making a date.

Jeff suddenly stopped his rambling and asked, “So, I think we really hit it off tonight, right?”

She stared blankly at him. Lying had never come easy to her. “I had a pretty good time.”

He stroked her arm, and she locked her knees to stop herself from pulling away. He wasn’t a bad guy. He didn’t give her the creeps. Jeff was even kind of good-looking: tall with dark hair and brown eyes, a little on the skinny side. But something turned her completely off.

When his hand stopped stroking her arm and his fingers interlocked with hers, the sweatiness of his palm was apparent. Eww. How was she supposed to disengage without seeming like a bitch?

“I’d like to see you again.”

“Maybe. Why don’t you send me an e-mail and we can set something up?”

“Can I have your number?”

She shifted slightly to the left, nearer to the door. “I don’t like to give out my number to too many people. This was just our first date and all.”

“But definitely not our last.” He leaned in to kiss her.

She saw it coming, thought she’d get a little peck on the cheek, but his mouth crashed into hers. When she didn’t immediately open her lips, his tongue poked and prodded. It was slimy and gross. When she tried to step back, he pulled her closer. The quick move startled her and in her shock, she inadvertently opened her mouth.

That was one hell of a mistake. He jabbed his tongue so far into her mouth, it was like he wanted to inspect her molars. And he was a sloppy kisser too. Saliva everywhere.

Her stomach started to churn just as he pulled away. “How about we take this upstairs?”

Not in this lifetime. “I don’t sleep with guys on the first date.”

“There’s a lot of territory between a kiss at the door and sleeping together.” He waggled his eyebrows at her.

Like she wanted to dry-hump that? “No, thanks. I should be getting in. It’s late and I have work tomorrow.”

“Oh, okay.” He really sounded disappointed. “Maybe we can get together this weekend.”

She slid toward the door, hoping he’d get the hint and not try to swoop in for another kiss. “I’ll be pretty busy this weekend. End of the school year stuff. But send me an e-mail. Good night.”

She didn’t wait for him to respond. She practically ran for the door. After scrubbing her mouth twice and then throwing her toothbrush in the trash, she called Indy. She plopped on the couch and put her feet up on the table. While Indy’s phone rang, she stared at the green nail polish on her toes. What a waste of a perfectly good pedicure.

Preorder the Series Now:

A Good Time

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Something To Prove

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About the Author:

Shannyn Schroeder is the author of the O’Leary series and the For Your Love series, contemporary romances centered around large Irish-American families in Chicago and the Hot & Nerdy series about nerdy friends finding love. Look for her new series – The Dating Challenge in 2019. When she’s not wrangling her three kids or writing, she watches a ton of TV and loves to bake cookies.

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Monday, November 12, 2018

Review: "Out of Left Field" by Kris Hui Lee

There’s no playing it safe in love or baseball in this sparkling debut, perfect for fans of Morgan Matson and Kasie West. Marnie has never had a hard time fitting in with the guys. It would take a lot more than their goofy antics to keep her from joining them at the neighborhood sandlot to do what she loves best: play ball. An added perk of hanging out at the sandlot? Spending time with Cody Kinski, their high school’s star pitcher and Marnie’s best friend. Sure, he can be stubborn and annoying. He also knows how to make her laugh and respects her skills on the mound. And when he gets nailed in the arm by a bone-fracturing pitch, Marnie becomes the team’s best chance at making it to the playoffs. Except no one told the guys they’re supposed to be on her side. With her own team against her, Marnie begins questioning her abilities. And when fate throws her a curveball, can she play without losing the game, Cody, and her belief in herself?

Many thanks to Sourcebooks Fire via Netgalley for the free review of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
This was such a cute book! If you like your contemporary YA on the sweet and light side, with a fun cast of characters and an underdog MC, "Out of Left Field" is a great choice for you.

So here are a few of the things that stood out for me with this book:
  • I really liked how Marnie and her friend Sara hung out with the boys and weren't super girly. It reminded me of the group of guys I hung out with in high school - we had so much fun! We were always going swimming or cliff jumping at a lake, or 4x4ing through the mud, or rock climbing without any gear (stupid, yes, but it was the 90's and we didn't know any better!) Even going to Subway or the movies was an adventure with those guys, and reading "Out of Left Field" brought out some of that nostalgia.
  • I liked that Colby and the baseball coach had Marnie's back, even when her teammates didn't accept her and she doubted herself and her abilities.
  • There were some good platonic relationships represented here, which I haven't seen often in YA contemporary romance novels. I especially enjoyed the developing friendship between Marnie and one of her biggest rivals!
  • I also appreciated the relationships Marnie had with the members of her family. There were a few warm and fuzzy moments between Marnie and her mom, for example, that did their job tugging on my heartstrings.
How about the things I didn't love?

  • The romance was kind of...meh. I usually love the best-friends-to-more trope, but in this case, the first 10 or 11 years of Marnie and Colby's friendship happened off-page, so there was none of that usual slow burn development I love. Basically, Marnie tells us in Chapter One that she and Colby have been best friends for x number of years, but we're not given much from those years. Maybe a couple of anecdotes here and there, but as far as show and tell, this book was very skewed towards telling with minimal showing. 
  • I thought the coach's language could have been toned down a bit. I thought his use of profanity was unwarranted and unprofessional. I know I sound like a total mom here, but honestly, if a coach was speaking like that around my kids, he wouldn't be coaching much longer, if you know what I mean.
Overall, I enjoyed my time with "Out of Left Field". For a debut, it was really well done, and I think that Kris Hui Lee is a name to watch for in the future of Contemporary YA. 

My rating: 3 stars

Friday, November 2, 2018

"Royally Yours" by Emma Chase: Review and Blog Tour!

Welcome to the Blog Tour for "Royally Yours" by Emma Chase. I'm so excited to be chosen to review this highly anticipated title, so make sure you read on to see my thoughts.

Princess Lenora Celeste Beatrice Arabella Pembrook had an unusual childhood. She was raised to be a Queen—the first Queen of Wessco. 

It’s a big deal. 

When she’s crowned at just nineteen, the beautiful young monarch is prepared to rule. She’s charming, clever, confident and cunning. 

What she isn’t…is married. 

It’s her advising council’s first priority. It’s what Parliament is demanding, and what her people want. Lenora has no desire to tie herself to a man—particularly one who only wants her for her crown. But compromises must be made and royals must do their duty. 

Even Queens. Especially them. 

** Years ago, Edward Langdon Richard Dorian Rourke, walked away from his title and country. Now he’s an adventurer—climbing mountains, exploring jungles, going wherever he wants, when he wants—until family devotion brings him home. 

And a sacred promise keeps him there. 

To Edward, the haughty, guarded little Queen is intriguing, infuriating…and utterly captivating. Wanting her just might drive him mad—or become his greatest adventure. 

** Within the cold, stone walls of the royal palace—mistrust threatens, wills clash, and an undeniable, passionate love will change the future of the monarchy forever. Every dynasty has a beginning. Every legend starts with a story. This is theirs.

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Emma Chase is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the hot and hilarious Tangled series and The Legal Briefs series. Emma lives in New Jersey with her husband, two children and two naughty (but really cute) dogs. She has a long-standing love/hate relationship with caffeine. 


I was pretty excited to receive an early copy of "Royally Yours" for this blog tour! I'd already read the first two books in the Royally series, and was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed them, especially the first title.

One of the strengths of this series are the characters - they are all so unique and interesting. Lenora, or "Lenny", as Edward likes to call her, has never led a normal life. I imagine her being modeled after Queen Elizabeth II, bred and trained since birth to lead a country.  She's serious, intelligent, and responsible. She's also very lonely. When we first meet her, she doesn't really have any friends, and even her sister is kept somewhat at arms length. She ends up making friends with Thomas, a newly minted Duke, and together they unite to conquer the old boys' club of Wessco, or in other words, do a bunch of political stuff like change laws and make some new ones. It doesn't really matter a whole lot, except for the fact that Lenora and Thomas become very close.  

So where does Edward come in? Well, he's Thomas's brother and he's been away for many years, exploring the world. One of Thomas and Lenora's favourite things to do is sit together and read Edward's letters, so when Edward finally returns to Wessco, Lenora feels like she already knows him, and she definitely has a bit of a crush on him! 

One thing I didn't like was how long it took for Lenora and Edward to actually come face to face: they don't even meet until a third of the way through the book! With only two thirds of a book left to develop a complicated relationship, their romance felt a bit rushed, in my opinion. 

I wasn't sure what to expect from "Royally Yours": I had really enjoyed "Royally Screwed", but "Royally Matched" was not as much fun. In the end, I'd rank "Royally Yours" somewhere in the middle of the two. 

My rating: 3.5 stars