28 May 2012

Cover Gallery: Cover-gasms gallore *woot*


Last week contained quite the cover releases with a wow factor for me.

Dark Hunter's Touch: This cover and blurb instantly screamed my name and I want it something fierce!! What I find annoying is the fact I can only find a preorder at Amazon Kindle *sigh*

Got the summary info from Jessa Slade's website

They said fairy godmothers
would grant all our wishes.

They said Tinkerbell would die
if we didn’t believe.

They said magic was just pretend.

They lied.

Once upon a time (in the original, more ominous inflection of the phrase) eldritch creatures stalked the world. They ranged across mountains and deserts and waterways—even the heavens—in a glory of guises. Some of the phaedrealii court were beautiful; some horrific. Some lived in harmony with humans; some…did not. Eventually, the chaos human passions—fear and hatred, joy and desire—drove too many phae to acts of madness. With deadly iron, humans forced the phae to retreat to hollow hills and storybooks.

Then the humans forgot.

But the phae never did.

Welcome to the world of the steel-born phae…

Jesse Slade on the www:
website | Hot Excerpt Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Pre-order @ Amazon

Soul Weaver: Hot many body - I've said it before but these kind of covers just make me purrrr in delight. Again, I find it annoying that it's only up for pre-order via Barnes & Noble and iTunes. WTF!!

Genre: Paranormal/Fantasy Romance
Publisher: Forever Yours
ISBN: 9781455523467 (ebook)
ISBN: TBA (print)
E-book release date: August 1, 2012
Print release date: August 1, 2012
Wicked Kin, Book One
Length: Novel

Since the accident that nearly took her life, Chloe suffers from acute agoraphobia. Living alone above her family’s bookstore, she spends restless nights terrified by strange visions . . . until a mysterious stranger appears and offers her salvation. Chloe is drawn to the ethereal, gorgeous Nathaniel—but her haunted soul warns her there is more to him than meets the eye.

An archangel who roams Earth collecting souls of the newly departed, Nathanial is the sole witness to the accident that should have taken Chloe’s life. Seduced by the purity of her soul, he defies Providence by saving her life. But his attempt at kindness marks Chloe for damnation, and makes her an unwitting pawn in a game of unholy ambition. Now together they must fight the demons of Hell itself—for a love that defies the boundaries of Heaven and Earth.

Wicked Kin is my new paranormal romance series.

Coming Soon From Grand Central Publishing’s New Forever Yours Line!

Hailey Edwards on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Preorder @ Barnes and Noble

Loving The Dead And The Undead: The next cover just beckons me to come with him - what will he lure me into? Passion, danger, adventure? Who knows but its inviting nonetheless *wink*


I couldn't find much info on this book except that it contains a few Libby Fox novellas. The, Loving the Dead and the Undead, print book will soon to be out.

Lauralynn Elliott on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter no pre-order link found :(

The Shift: When I stumbled across this cover on facebook I was instantly drawn to the face; piercing soulful eyes and a somewhat angry look on his face. I want to know what happened...can you imagine my surprise when i found out it was a Samhain release and they have a free book discount of $5.50 with code RT2012. I bought this puppy faster than I could say *woot*

By: Kate Sherwood
Type: eBook
Genre: Gay Alternate Worlds
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
Publication Date: 05-22-2012
Length: Novella
ISBN: 978-1-60928-959-1

Summary from Samhain:

Two men, too many monsters.

Raised off the grid, Cash has trained all his life to protect humanity from The Shift—a mysterious force that creates monsters capable of unspeakable destruction. For Cash and his warrior family, risks are just part of the job and death is an ever-present possibility.

When his daredevil tendencies defeat a monster but leave him over his head in a puddle of green goo, Cash figures his number is up…until he’s plucked to safety by a devastatingly handsome stranger.

Toby needs no weapons to fight The Shift, that’s why he’s perfected the art of laying low. Sudden moves draw unwanted attention, but he can’t stand by and watch Cash drown. Big mistake—it isn’t long before Cash is returning the favor, rescuing him from kidnappers intent on harnessing his genetic enhancements.

On the run with danger nipping at their heels, romantic sparks fly between them. But there’s no trust without truth, and things get complicated when Toby reveals everything Cash has fought against is a lie. The time has come to decide who’s the real monster—and whose side he’s on.

Product Warnings: Super-romance, Super-sex, Super-heroism. Super-hot. Moments of Super-cute.

Kate Sherwood on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Buy @ Samhain for free till 5/31/2012 with code RT2012

Thrown By A Curve: Okay, every Jaci Burton cover in her Play By Play series has been amazing. I still say the first cover in her series remains my #1 but every cover is made of win. This one hit twitterverse a few days ago and lots of ooohhh's and aaaahhhh and purrrrrrrs have been uttered ever since ;)

THROWN BY A CURVE, Book 5 in the Play by Play series.
It will release in March, 2013.

Summary from Jaci Burton's website;
She thinks she knows this player—but he has a few surprise moves.

For Alicia Riley, her job as a sports therapist for the St. Louis Rivers baseball team is a home run—until she becomes the primary therapist for star pitcher, Garrett Scott. Out of the lineup with an injury, he’s short-tempered, hard to handle, and every solid inch, a man.

Right now, the only demand he’s making on Alicia is that she get him ready to pitch in time for opening day. Except the sexual chemistry between them is so charged, Alicia’s tempted to oblige Garrett just about anything. But both their careers are at stake—one bad move and it’s game over for both of them.

Garrett also feels the hot sparks between them, and the way he figures it, what better therapy is there than sex? Now all he has to do is convince the woman with the power to make the call.

Jaci Burton on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter Couldn't find a pre-order link :(

Can you see how I'm a puddle of satisfied cover hussy at the moment?! Has anyone got cover or release news to share I have to know about?

27 May 2012

Sunday's Brunch; A visit to a friend, LLC & a free book

Last week summer arrived in the Netherlands which I loved and hated at the same time. It never is a gradual increase of heat, oh no, the Netherlands had to go from around 14 C to a whopping 28 C in a few days. Can I say; Yikes!! But now that I’ve come accustomed to the humidity and temperatures I’m enjoying myself – if I don’t have much to do ;)

On twitter I’ve been following Pearl’s progress in her move to a new house and yesterday she and her hubby celebrated it with a housewarming party. It was one of those days that had a golden glow to them. First of all I was on schedule, which means I could take it easy and go to the bus in a less than frantic mode. On the bus I listened to music, sun was shining on my face and people were all in a good mood. A free day full of summer weather will do that to the Dutch people *wink*

PS: Due to hot weather my feet were swollen and I had to wear these, instead of the strappy sandals I had in mind, so I could walk to and from station & Pearls house.




I got on the train, had free wifi *woot* and though I had some stressors due to new public transportation route I was doing good. To Pearl’s former home it took me about 2 and a half – three hours but now it is a tight route and it takes me one and a half hours which is so full of win!!! I got out in Pearl’s neck of the woods and of course lost my way. The first friendly face I found I yelled “whelp me”. She did and while I walked in the right direction I found a beautiful fix me upper:


With a fantastic view given from across the street.


Then I got to the street of Pearl’s home to find myself at number 101, looked at the invite and yeah, I had to go way down the street. But there were cute stores; a fresh veggie and fruit store, an Italian ice-cream parlor (very important to me cause I LOVE Italian ice-cream!) I even came across a mill!

Pearl was already outside to greet me and from there on it was good company, good food – my taste buds got acquainted to a whole new set of tastes and structures *win* and most important good convo’s. I had a blast. Met with Lucy again after five years and we talked up a storm! Before I knew it, it was nine PM and time for me to go.

On the way back I was tired, I had a sun soaked skin, a grin on my face and I was uber tired. I had to take a picture from my view to commemorate the moment.


Then at eleven-ish I got home to find this:


It was the cherry on the day and it made me buzz around for at least forty-five minutes before I dropped dead in bed!

Now it’s Sunday, I’m taking my day to have some ‘me time’ before I have to get my apartment ready so my bro & his girlfriend will come in a reasonably organized house. They are going to furry sit on Lady Bug and Queen Furry while I am going to the Love letter Convention. On Thursday I’m going to my sister, Natascha, have a home cooked meal with brownies as dessert and catch up. Then on Friday our Love Letter Convention adventure is going to start. We’re going to meet up with @Lucy73 and @Pearl_828 and have a grand gurl time. We’re also going to see @xAurianx and her bestie, hopfully @susisunshine, @pattepoilue and @_ClaudiaGC, too!!

I know I’ve said it once or twice already *rolls eyes at self* but to meet Nalini Singh, Larissa Ione, Lara Adrian, Maya Banks, Shannon McKenna, Lisa Marie Rice, Bella Andre & a few more authors is just such a treasure!! It’s going to be an awesome experience!

I will close this Sunday’s Brunch with the annoucement that Samhain Publishing is having a $5,50 discount with the code RT2012 which will last, if my information is correct, till May 31st *woot* I already got me some good and free stuff;


Kate Sherwood - The Shift (m/m alternate worlds)


Arianna Hart - Waking Up (m/f paranormal)

Have a great sunday everyone!!

25 May 2012

Joely Sue Burkhart: The challenge in writing a menage a trois.

The challenge in writing a menage a trois.

In a really powerful romance, there has to be enough real, believable conflict between the hero and heroine that the reader has to wonder how in the world they're going to get together. Yes, we know it's a romance and so we're guaranteed a happy ending, or at least a happy for now...but it's the rollercoaster ride that we crave. Will they get together or not? Who's going to be devastated by a secret, betrayal, or doubt? How can they work out all their differences and find a way to be together?

Now think about trying to work out a relationship between THREE people. Of course there's inherent conflict from the beginning. Who's going to feel jealous? Who's going to walk out first? Are they all attracted to each other or not? In a modern day world where even basic marriage rights are still argued in America, how can they figure out a three-way committed relationship?

In Yours to Take, Vicki is at the center of the menage. She has a prior -- very fiery -- relationship with Elias that ended three months ago. The sex was good, maybe too good sometimes, but they fought over their jobs constantly. They wrestle each other for dominance and that's the way they like it. But it's also exhausting. Elias isn't a warm and touchy sort of guy and he has difficulty even finding words to say how much he cares for Vicki. His way of showing his love is to sit guard outside her place in the wee hours of the morning, even after they broke up.

When Vicki brings a homeless street artist in from the cold, her dominant tendencies are only exacerbated. But Jesse brings out her tenderness too. He's a snuggle bear. There's no fight with him -- he's perfectly willing to do anything and everything she says without question. She's in control without a fight, without any drama. But she fears that he doesn't have enough self assurance to stop her if she goes too far.

Then of couse there's Elias. When he comes charging in on his white horse, who's going to get hurt? Can he swallow his pride enough to accept another man in her bed, when he couldn't bring himself to apologize for walking out on her three months ago? When he's been sitting outside in his truck without ever knocking on her door?

It's definitely an emotional rollercoaster. But really, the best part of writing a menage....

Is figuring out where all those hands and mouths are going to wander. :-D

~ * ~

Joely always has her nose buried in a book, especially one with mythology, fairy tales, and romance.

A GIVEAWAY YOU DON'T WANT TO MISS: One winner will get a download of Yours To Take, format of their choice!! Winner will be announced on May 30th 2012. Let me have a way to contact you!!

Find her on her website, Twitter, and Facebook.. Be sure to check out her Free Reads

23 May 2012

Celebrating the romances of Nora Roberts

After reading The Witness (review) a month or so back it fueled a re-read spree of some of my favorite Nora Roberts books. I didn’t get to read them all because after four books in small towns I just about had enough of the setting. I also noticed that the female protagonists mostly have to deal with a controlling mother. Still, each plot and the incorporated tropes were exciting, drawing me in to the story and the vibrant characters made the small town setting come alive.

From the books I’ve read I accumulated many quotes, even though I didn’t do extensive reviews I wanted to share the quotes celebrating Nora Roberts and her many wonderful heartwarming romances!

The Witness
Quote 1; She understood the concept of pursuit and conquer. The male felt challenged, driven to persuade, capture, conquer. Perhaps she should reconsider having sex with him. With sex the pursuit would end, the challenge would be removed. His interest would begin to wane.
Those were logical reasons.
It would also include the benefit of eliminating this yearning. Once her own physical needs were met, his challenge met, his interest faded, she would have no reason to think of him at inopportune times. Everything would go back to normal and routine.
She considered the theory valid.

Quote 2; You’re in love with me. I can see it, and I can feel it. Why don’t you try the words?”
“I don’t know. I want to know.”
“Just try them out, see how it feels. I won’t hold you to it.”
“I … I’m in love with you. Oh, God.” She closed her eyes. “It feels real.”
“Say it again, and kiss me.”
“I’m in love with you.” She didn’t ease in, but flung herself. Starving for that knowledge, the gift, the light of it. Love. Being loved, giving it.


Carnal Innocence;

Quote 1; He slipped his hands into his pockets, leaned a shoulder against the jamb, and let himself drift along with her. It was odd, and certainly foreign to him, that he could find a woman so restful, so quietly appealing, so deeply arousing, when it had nothing whatsoever to do with sex.

Quote 2; “Damn. The nastier you are, the more I like you. I’m perverse that way.” “And other ways?”
He chuckled and sat on the arm of the sofa. “We’ll have to get to know each other better first. You might hear I’m easy, Caroline, but the thing is, I’ve got my standards."

Quote 3; On a professional level he was a tremendous asset to me. He pushed me musically. He said I was the finest artist he’d ever worked with, but I could be better. He would mold me, sculpt me.”
“Why didn’t he buy himself some Play-Doh?”

Carolina Moon;

Quote 1; She folded her hands. "No, I haven't forgotten anything. Who are you?"
"That sound you hear's my ego crumbling. Even after all these years, I could've picked you out in a crowd. It's Cade," he said, and stepped closer. "Kincade Lavelle."

Quote 2; "Cade, I'm no good at this sort of thing."
"Which sort? The kissing sort?"
"No." Her own laugh came as a surprise. How could he make her laugh when she was terrified? "The man-woman thing, the relationship thing."
"Then you'll just have to practice."

Quote 3; None of the others had been able to fight him, but she would. God, she would. I am Tory. The words were a battle cry ringing in her ears. She was Tory, and she would fight.

Birthright:

Quote 1; "She felt it was her fault, that she'd done something to cause it."
"I smoked a lot of pot in college."
Callie blinked, then found something rising unexpectedly in her throat. It was laughter. "Oh, Mom, you wild woman."
"Well, I did." Vivian wiped at tears even as a smile trembled on her lips.
"And I did LSD once, and had two one-night stands."
"Okay then, that explains it. You slut. Got any grass in the house now?"
"No! Of course not."
"Oh well, we'll get through this without blissing out then." Callie leaned over the table, patted her mother's knee. "So you were a pothead floozy. Got it."

Quote 2; I like books. I'm afraid I treat them carelessly, in a way that would make bibliophiles like you and Roger weep."
"You dog-ear pages?"
"Please, even I wouldn't go that far. But I break spines. I spill coffee on pages. And once I dropped an Elizabeth Berg novel in the bathtub. I think it was a first edition."
"Obviously, this relationship is doomed. So why don't we order?"

Quote 3; "Caught you." She gestured with her fork. "You smiled."
"I did not."
"Oh, yes you did. And there, you're doing it again. A very nice smile, too. Does it hurt?"
"Only a little. I'm out of practice."
She picked up her wine and chuckled. "I bet we can fix that."

Quote 4; "I hate when I get that mad. So mad I can't think straight. I'm going to hate this, too." She looked back at him. "You were right."
"Wait. I want to get my tape recorder out of the car."
"If you're going to be a smart-ass, I won't finish thanking you."

Quote 5; So far her time in Woodsboro had been just a little too interesting. Old family secrets, crude graffiti all over her Rover—which was why she was driving Rosie's enormous Jeep Cherokee—murder, mystery and finally gunshots and mild concussions.

Quote 6; "Look into it," Callie finished, and managed a laugh. "Can't blame the guy for being skeptical. A thirty-year-old crime solved by a couple of diggers, a girl lawyer and a bookseller."
"Excuse me, two respected scientists, a brilliant attorney and an astute antiquarian book dealer."

Of course I want to know which Nora Roberts is your favorite!!

Nora Roberts on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Buy @ BookDepo

21 May 2012

Review: Abigail Roux & Madeleine Urban - Cut And Run

Format: E-Book, 376 pages
Release date: September 1st 2008
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 193519223X (ISBN13: 9781935192237)
Language: English
Title: Cut & Run
Series Cut And Run #1
Characters: Ty Grady, Zane Garrett
Setting: New York (United States)
Copy read from my personal e-library

Summary from Goodreads:
A series of murders in New York City has stymied the police and FBI alike, and they suspect the culprit is a single killer sending an indecipherable message. But when the two federal agents assigned to the investigation are taken out, the FBI takes a more personal interest in the case.

Special Agent Ty Grady is pulled out of undercover work after his case blows up in his face. He's cocky, abrasive, and indisputably the best at what he does. But when he's paired with Special Agent Zane Garrett, it's hate at first sight. Garrett is the perfect image of an agent: serious, sober, and focused, which makes their partnership a classic cliché: total opposites, good cop-bad cop, the odd couple. They both know immediately that their partnership will pose more of an obstacle than the lack of evidence left by the murderer.

Practically before their special assignment starts, the murderer strikes again — this time at them. Now on the run, trying to track down a man who has focused on killing his pursuers, Grady and Garrett will have to figure out how to work together before they become two more notches in the murderer's knife.


Review:

For a very long time now I’ve been hearing good stuff about the Cut And Run series by Abigail Roux and Madeleine Urban. While I purchased the first three books at a fictionwise sale perhaps as long as one and a half years ago, it is only now that I started to read the first book in this series. I really had no expectation going in to Cut And Run but it turned out the story elements pulled me in to two directions.

The first hundred pages I had no idea what to think. The opening contained a grabbing angle with a perpetrator doing its worst. But after that the suspense fell flat for me and instead I got to meet the two FBI agents whom kept me invested in reading. The flow of the story was working against me and it wasn’t the rapidly altering point of views that was the cause. The story was either pulling me in with the lure of these two amazing men or it was throwing me out with the suspense. The second hundred pages I got action scenes on steroids, a deeper insight in who Ty Grady and Zane Garrett are with a few unraveling clues on the case. I still felt the push and pull and I already had a big hunch on the identity of the perpetrator. Then the third hundred pages the case was falling flat again for me with an ending that was good but couldn’t deliver the chills, thrills and gasps of surprise.

I feel an aggravation for not being able to adequately explain why the plot elements didn’t mesh for me. I mean, overall speaking the plot was nice, the action certainly over the top but with the macho attitudes of Ty and Zane it worked and in the end the serial killer was revealed. It was just too much hotel room for me, which makes time for incredible character and emotional development but didn’t add suspense to the plot. Then you get a few moments of investigating clues and either Ty or Zane end up hurt so it’s back to the hotel room again. I didn’t feel involved in the case, in the in-depth thought process of Ty or Zane in agent mode or even the serial killer wreaking havoc.

What drew me into Cut And Run you might ask? Why did I keep reading on? Well, Abigail Roux and Madeleine Urban created Ty Grady and Zane Garrett. Two men whom mesmerized me, aggravated me, baffled me and I just couldn’t resist them. Ty Grady; 6 ft 3" tall is a potent male, chaotic with no people skills, impulsive, with a wry sense of humor and I loved him on the spot. Then there’s Zane Garrett 6 ft 5" tall athletic body, analytical, has lots of issues, smart and talk about polar personality traits. At first he is a straight-laced agent, abiding by every rule in the book which unravels gradually and I got to see a total different side of Zane. I inhaled their interaction, both verbal as physical. It’s a clash of testosterone with moments of utter devastating emotions. Ty has the bad-boy image yet hides a good heart and turns out to be so very likable. Zane’s development however caught me off guard. He’s complex, intensely flawed and so messed up inside I just had to fall for him.

I have to say they get under each other’s skin easily and the attraction feels very real, the sex is awesome and the intimacy issues add layered problems to unravel. Not every personal problem gets fixed by the end of Cut And Run but this whole series is about them so I expect a continuation of their relationship progress in further stories. This is an epic gay couple whom I enclosed in my heart. I hope the suspense will work for me in the other stories but for Ty and Zane alone I will read it. Their interaction is phenomenal and I have a boat load of quotes to give you a taste.

3.5 stars

Quote Ty;
“Listen up, ’cause I'm only gonna say this once,” Ty muttered as they walked to their gate. “I don’t talk when I fly. I sleep. And I don’t listen when I eat, understand? I don’t wanna be buddies. I don’t wanna chat,” he said with a sarcastic lilt to the word. “I don’t wanna know about your childhood or how your momma whipped you with a rubber glove or how much therapy you had to go through ’cause you flunked out of preschool. I don’t wanna hear about how you want to be Director someday or how many collars you got chasin’ those Internet freaks or how proud you are of your bowel movements. I don’t wanna go shopping at Barney’s with you, and I’m not gonna help you pick out your ties to match your socks and, I swear to God, if you get me shot, I’ll kill you.”

Quote Zane;
Zane’s look was patently disbelieving. “I think you decide what a perfectly polite person would do and then do the absolute opposite. It’s like it’s your life’s goal to be the Antichrist.”

Quote Ty;
Ty stared at Zane incredulously for a moment and then looked away with a shake of his head.
“Perhaps you prefer Scooby Doo?” Henninger offered politely.
“More like the Dark Knight,” Zane muttered without thinking first.
Ty smirked and glanced over at the man. “Does that mean I can call you Robin from now on?” he asked with an amused glint in his eyes.
“That’s Boy Wonder to you,” Zane answered flatly, turning to look out the window as Morrison stared at them both.

Quote Ty;
Zane looked significantly up and down Ty’s barely covered body.
Ty looked down at himself and then back up at Zane with a sniff as he realized what Zane was blathering about. “I’m a lethal weapon, man,” he grunted.

Quote Ty;
Ty grabbed him and pulled him off the counter to kiss him again, forcing himself not to think about the consequences. If he thought about it, he’d cut and run—as far and as fast as he possibly could.

Quote;
Ty banged his head back on the door and closed his eyes, huffing through his nose as he tried to regain some control. “I lied,” he groaned plaintively. “I didn’t wanna know.”
Zane couldn’t help but smile and snicker. “Too late, hotshot,” he said.
“Bastard.”
“Coming from you, that’s pretty much an endearment.”

Quote:
Zane shook his head. “Are you feeling this, too?” he rasped. This insane, blown-away pleasure, the near impossible-to-assuage hunger, the ache deep inside, contrasted by short moments of tenderness that seemed so out of place. Zane certainly wasn’t sure where they came from, but oh, God …

Quote Zane;
Well, fine. They were just getting used to each other again, right? The insanely satisfying and addictive sex was just a bonus. Anything else he felt was shoved away as far as he could push it.

Quote:
It didn’t even faze Zane. “You look like sex on legs to me. You’ll blend in, no problem.”
“I swear to God, if you try to put me in leather pants or some shit like that I’ll kill you,” Ty warned with a point of his finger at Zane.

Quote;
It was a gloriously violent kiss that he poured all his anguish and anger into.


Abigail Roux & Madeleine Urban on the www:
Abigail Roux website | Madeleine Urban website | Goodreads | Abigail Roux Twitter | Buy @ Dreamspinner Press

Hop Against Homophobia; Winner


I've enjoyed many posts in this Hop Against Homophobia. I learned a lot, even got a date out of it with a good friend to do the Amsterdam Canal Pride and I hope everyone had an incredible time spreading the awareness!

Via Random.org a winner was selected. So congratulation to:

L.M. Brown

Somewhere today I will drop you an e-mail to get you your choice in K.A. Mitchell book!!

Everyone, have a great start of the week and happy reading time!

20 May 2012

Sunday's Brunch: I caved & joined Pinterest

My week has been a bit of this and a bit of that and I guess my Sunday's Brunch will be lots of small talk and LOTS of pictures. First of all I have a picture of a mated swan pair that has spent the summer at the pond for as long as I live here which is fifteen years now. There hasn't been a spring/summer where they grace the ponds behind my apartment complex with their young. My spring/summer is never right without them and I love seeing their swan babies grow up. My Lady Bug also loves playing with their swan babies but papa swan quickly scares her away. Each year I try to tell Lady Bug about the strong wings these magnificent animals have but of course Lady Bug has to be all happy, happy and dances towards them in greetings. Last year the swan pair had an epic eight baby swans...now it's "just" four.




This week I also participated in the Hop Against Homophobia and as I visited Janna's place we decided to go to Amsterdam for the Canal Pride. I've never been there but the news items each year always scream fun. So in August Janna and I will join the fun and hopefully will have an awesome day. I have no doubt we will report about this day on our blogs!!

I also have another girl day planned in July when Magic Mike will hit the cinema's. I heard about this movie via Mandi from SmexyBooks and as I watched the trailers I screamed it would be the perfect movie to end a girls day out with. This is in the works *woot* Of course this picture has been viral for several days but how can I deny you ladies another look??



Now that I'm much more on facebook as well I find much more books, pics and info. For instance, Kele Moon gave us the temporarily blurb of Star Crossed, her second book in the Battered hearts series. Romeo and Jules have me pining!!

Quote Kele Moon from Facebook:
Temporarily long blurb for Star Crossed, A Battered Hearts Book :D Coming to a reader near you on July 3rd :D

Heavyweight MMA fighter, Romeo Wellings comes from the hard streets of New York where his family ties to the mafia cause him nothing but pain. His life takes a surprising detour when he crosses paths with the twin sister of his long time enemy. After a steamy one-night stand, he faces the fight of his life, but it’s not in the cage. The secret relationship that blooms between Romeo and his real life Juliet has him battling his family and a dark past rather than let her go.

The only lawyer in her hometown of Garnet, Jules Conner is also a volunteer Sheriff’s deputy and co-owner of a successful MMA training center. Strong and dependable, Jules is always there for those who need her. Until one forbidden night in Las Vegas with Romeo leaves her feeling so alive she can’t stop reaching out to the sexy, bad boy of MMA, even knowing the forbidden love affair could jeopardize everything.

As the tide rises against them and the people they love work at keeping them apart, Romeo and Jules hold onto a dream for a better life together and vow to go down fighting rather than accept a tragic ending.

I also have found this book and it grabbed my attention - I lurv me some rockstars!! It sounds like a very dark and gritty story but sometimes i find myself in the mood for those!

Dazed: The Story of a Grunge Rocker, by Nikki Palomino
(The Dazed Series #1 )
Format: eBook
Cover Artist: Reese Dante
Genres: Contemporary, Gay, Romance
ISBN: 9781920502911
Pages: 424 pp.
Word Count: 86334

Blurb from Silver Publishing:
Eric returns home from the Portland streets to find most things unchanged, but a fellow art student sees the pain beneath the artistic brilliance as the men struggle to survive in a world that hates junkies and fags.

When artiste extraordinaire and grunge rocker, Eric Peterson, returns home after living on the Portland streets, he finds most things unchanged, except for one thing. His best friend, Kevin, has moved on to another relationship, causing negativity and pain to resurface in Eric's short, angry, inspired life.

Desperate, Eric will stop at nothing to secure a blast of smack, and fellow art student, Brian, tries to help, seeing that Eric's pain might extinguish his artistic brilliance.


When Eric finds DAZED, he gives up the drugs cold turkey and climbs brutally through the nightmarish world of addiction. Eric's journey leads to self-discovery, love and passion, and a triumphant survival in a world that hates junkies and fags.

CONTENT ADVISORY: There are mentions of a close MF relationship as well as several MM encounters with varying partners.


Nikki Palomino on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Buy @ Silver Publishing

I also found a few lol cats pictures that made me laugh so much.

 Sometimes you need to say the truth out loud!!

Kitty arrogance - I swear this makes me want to go out and buy a kitty of my own each time!!

And this one is especially for my friend, Pearl - who doesn't like early mornings in the weekend. Love ya, hon - hold on for a few more weeks!!

So last week I found myself with a little bit of extra green and wanted to spoil myself. One of the things I love to spoil myself with are shoes. I went into the city and found myself a pair of Steve Madden shoes:

Only to find out my feet hover between size 38-39 which they didn't have. My eyes got misty and tried real hard not to cry!! They shoe sales woman looked empathetically at me so instead I bought these - which look awesome too :)

See how much small talk I have for today. So now finally on to my title. Pinterest. I think Janna and I have talked numerous times about Tumblr. And I tried real hard to resist. I succeeded until Pinterest came in to the picture. We talked again about how fun it is. I said; "Do I want another time suck??"

But you see, I haz these folders sitting on my computer full of visual delights. It goes from man chest hotness to shoe pron to cover candy. I haz it all. So for all the struggling I did over the months trying to resist the lure of joining either Tumblr or Pinterest I caved last night. My fall from my soapbox of not wanting another timesuck made me fall flat on my face as I played with a big, wide grin on Pinterest. It was @_ClaudiaGC  from twitter who did me in. I talked about my thought on Pinterest and she said to "Dooooooo iiiiiitttttttttt" and then she lured me over to the dark side with hawt men. How can I stay strong when Janna already told me about the fun and then Claudia - I was weak but it felt good and now playing happily on Pinterest. I already have five folders:

  • Hunk Fest
  • Furry Fun
  • Cover Candy
  • Shoe Pron
  • Taste Bud Delights

I have no doubt there will be more in the future. So it might take me a while to finally join ranks but once I see the use in it for me I get excited. Will the rest of the world think; "Oh hon, we discovered that months ago." or "That's is sooooo 2010!" - Probably *sigh* but that is a Leontine trait *wink*

Have a fantastic sunday everyone!!!

17 May 2012

Hop Against Homophobia: K.A. Mitchell

Today is the international day against homophobia and many authors/readers/reviewers decided to come together in a hop to celebrate it and talk about homophobia in various ways. When I decided very last minute to join the Hop Against Homophobia it was because I think this is one of those topics that can't get enough attention. When I was pondering on what to do I was thinking of how to fill my blogpost. I was raised by parents who never had issues with different lifestyles. When I was in need of a children's therapist my mom took me to a home practice with a lesbian couple who did play therapy. It was just a natural thing for me and their verbal and nonverbal interaction made me feel safe. I think I'm very blessed to have parents who try very hard to keep an open mind. It's what they passed down on me. Plus, love is already hard to find, so if you do find it why should it matter with what gender that person is?! So there I sat, crunching my brain what to write for this blog hop. And came up with nothing.

That's when I gave a shout out on twitter and this incredible woman answered. She was willing to share a personal story. And as always with personal stories, they are never short. Still, I wouldn't want K.A. Mitchell to edit one word. So I'm giving the floor to her:


Leontine suggested I talk to you about the incident of homophobia that stands out the most, one particular point of discrimination. I'm a lesbian and while it gets easier to state that plainly every year, it's never without an awareness of risk, a tiny hesitation before I say or speak that word. And that hesitation is what I want to talk about.

For me, homophobia has been a lifelong experience. There wasn't any time I was bashed or fired for being who I am. I suppose if you want to take the biggest, most painful example, it would be when my now-legal- in-New-York-and-most- of-the-surrounding-states wife needed three months leave from her job to complete a certification she needed to keep her job. I couldn't add her to my health insurance because although my school was private and state-funded, we couldn't upset the bishop with a domestic partnership rider on our insurance. If the situation had been reversed I could have been on hers. We were two grand out of pocket. Expensive bit of homophobia.

But it isn't that which causes that hesitation, that moment. It's a lifetime of knowing. Of having the choice to hide or to be true to who I am. To find the courage to speak it no matter what effects the truth has.

From an adult perspective, I can tell you I should have always known I was gay. I didn't dream about marriages, but about settling into a house with my best friend. I sobbed for days if any of those relationships went sour. It seemed like an effort to drag myself into the whole "liking boys" thing we were supposed to do when we grew up. When I was sixteen, I was just realizing that my feelings for girls I'd never even hugged ran far deeper than those for boys I'd made out with. Harvey Milk's assassination that year was a salient example and sent me scurrying back to convincing myself that okay, I'd be closer to my female friends, but I'd find a guy I could fall for.

No one gets out of high school without knowing what it feels like to be "other." To know who the misfits are, the queers, the ones who even while you're nice enough to smile at them in the hall, you would never take the risk of wanting to be them. Those names that kids use--it wasn't "gay" in my day but "fag" and "dyke"—the disapproval, the fear gets into you deep and never lets go.

Eventually, I couldn't fake it anymore and came out, at least to myself. Then to others. From some of my friends it was "mazel tov," from others "I can't be seen with you or people will think I'm like that." From family, it was figuring out "What happened?" No big terrible fights. No shunning. But a judgment, when my grandfather said "You look more like a schoolmarm everyday" I knew what the connotation was. Old maid, unmarried, unwomanly. Homophobia doesn't have to be overt. On the other side, I had a grandmother who didn't speak to my eventual wife for sixteen years, though she never dared refuse us into her house.

Sometimes it felt easier to wear an otherness on the outside, so that I could fight the pretending. I had and still have waist length hair and a love of feminine clothes. I couldn't seem to conform to the militant lesbian look popular on my college campus, but I wore my favorite bright pink "Dyke Princess" pin almost every day. Insulated in college, I got a thicker skin.

But I still worried about being an embarrassment to my parents. And if you wanted to see an image of yourself reflected in fiction, there were many agonizing films about unhappy gay people to watch, tragic plays and books. It was the early days of AIDS and people were dying, and in the media, there was a clear "serves the queers right" kind of feeling to fight.

I took my internalized homophobia with me to work. While I would never permit name-calling, I could never tell my high school students. All I could imagine was the headline of "Avowed lesbian denies molesting female student at all girls school." That sense of otherness teaches you that when the world is not on your side, you hide, you blend. You worry about being seen going into a gay bar. You worry about what books you might be seen reading.

As a romance writer, I discovered a whole new world of homophobia. At my first writer conferences in the beginning of this century, I could tell what the attitude was. Women who didn't conform to the feminine in clothes and hair were immediately labeled queer, especially as they grew more successful. I don't know how many people tried to tell this newbie Suzanne Brockmann and Eloisa James were gay. I decided the publishing world would not accept a lesbian romance writer and swallowed all casual mentions of my family life.

Ten years later, here I am in a genre that I still wasn't sure would accept me, where I still get asked why would you a lesbian, chose to write about gay men, often with some agenda behind the question. I can't tell you why I find gay male romance to be the romance I love most to read and tell, anymore than I can tell you why I've always fallen in love with women instead of men.

And I want to tell you that for most gay people, we don't daily face a gauntlet of name-calling and sneers. It's the underlying digs, the knowledge that you will always be other, always have to correct the assumption of heterosexuality and in do so take a risk of rejection that wears on our souls.

In fact, the name calling is kind of funny. At least you know where you stand. None of this fake politelness to your face while they hate you behind your back. The only time I've ever been harassed in the "traditional" way is when while holding hands with my future wife while walking in Provincetown, putatively a gay haven, someone in a car threw a cigarette at me yelling "Fucking faggots." I was mostly worried about my hair and he was gone before I could correct his gender confusion of "That's a fucking dyke to you, moron."

While saying "I'm a lesbian" may be getting easier, there are still those moments that make my heart pound with fear. Just last summer, I was leaving a marriage-equality rally in Albany (we won!). It was noon. I had a pro marriage equality sign with me as I crossed the street in front of city hall. A driver leaned out of his truck to yell, "Fuck queers." The sudden explosion of hate and anger called up a lifetime of that fear, but I've had a lot of practice lately. Or maybe one of my cockier characters took hold of me. In an instant I yelled back "Thanks, I do."

Yeah. those three little words are getting easier. Maybe I'll try sliding them into conversations a little more. Hi, I'd like the eggplant I'm-a-lesbian Panini and a side of, yes, I'm queer, salad. Harvey Milk was right. Despite all the fear the institution of homophobia instills in us, it never gets better until we come out.

Thanks for having me here.

UK MEET GIVEAWAY
GIVEAWAY 1: For one lucky winner I have a ticket for the GLBTQ UK Meet. This does not include hotel/travel or meals not included in the ticket) The ticket is a portal to loads of fun, panels and many authors/readers of the GLBTQ genre!! Here's the program.

GIVEAWAY 2: K.A. Mitchell has been generous to offer the prize of an e-book of your choice from her backlist save The Christmas Proposition.

Just leave a meaningful comment to this blogpost, tell me if you have a preference for one of the giveaways and come back on May 20th to check back if you've won!!


K.A. Mitchell on the www:
website | Goodreads | Twitter

15 May 2012

Review: Belinda McBride - An Uncommon Whore

ISBN: 978-1-60737-512-8
Format: E-Book
Publisher: Loose-Id
Genre: LGBT Science Fiction/Space Opera
Length: Novel
Series: An Uncommon Whore; Next Book: When I Fall
Related Title: Belle Starr
Copy read from my e-library

Summary from loose-Id:
“As a general rule, you won’t find the love of your life while you’re on your knees under a table.”-- Helios Dayspring

Pasha is a slave, whoring for travelers at the most dangerous bar on Warlan. He has no memory, no future of his own, yet deep inside Pasha knows that that he is meant for better things. The day that Pasha spots the dangerous pirate in the bar, he knows that he mustn't let the stranger slip away, regardless of what he must do to attract his attention.

Captain Griffin Hawke spent the greater part of a decade searching for his lost king, only to find Helios Dayspring crouched between his knees, swathed in the robes and shackles of a whore. Though he is appalled by the downfall of his king, the hardened officer finds himself falling for the allure of the sensual creature who has taken his place. Returning Helios to his position on the throne is the only right thing to do, yet Griffin knows that in doing so, he risks losing his lover forever.

“A whore is a whore is a whore, unless he’s something else completely. I guess I must be an uncommon whore.”-- Helios Dayspring

Publisher's Note: This book contains male/male sexual practices.

Review:

An Uncommon Whore is a story where the beginning hums with the promise of a burning attraction and is seasoned with an interesting escape plotline. It is easy for the reader to absorb the world, its customs and I was quickly connected to the main pair which led me to emotion rife moments. As the story progresses it is carried by two formidable albeit flawed men but the plot tension kept at a level of engaging but refused to get in the ‘edge of your seat’ territory. Which I regretted because it would've made the stakes rise that much more!

From the beginning it is Helios Dayspring and Griffin Hawke who ensnare me with hidden secrets, fierce personalities and an attraction that sets the blood ablaze with passion. Helios is a whore who lives in the now with one wish: to be free. He is cunning enough to have attempted it but failed so far. When I met Helios is was intrigued by him. What made him so uncommon? While the answer to that question didn't wow me Helios' past became more interesting with each chapter. There is so much more to him than meets the eye and I wanted to know it all!

When Griffin enters the stage a whole new ball game comes in to play. The interplay he has with Helios is, by far, the best this story has to offer. There is a burning attraction between Griffin and Helios that demands rather than asks. There are secrets which are a live wire of danger entangling them both between past, present and the future. Griffin is the proverbial picture of a battle warn warrior with a penchant to lead rather than follow. He is gruff at first glance but in his interaction with Helios I got to see another side of him. He is a character of depth and I loved following him on his journey and discovery of his backstory. It's one that affected me, made me like him and I loved what he offered Helios.

The author gives the characters a layered personalities, instantly capturing the readers interest with backstories filled with mystery and dialogues filled with humor, snark and attitude. Carlotte is a supportive character who brims with temperament, backbone yet there remains a vulnerable side to her. In terms of characterization this author nailed it for me, she gradually reveals information that drives home an emotion rife HFN ending. However, I think the plot tension had a nice beginning but wasn't followed through as incredible as the characterization. The plot at the core holds incredible potential so perhaps in the sequel this will get a chance to really deliver on the suspense. In, An Uncommon Whore, it was more the revealing of secrets rather than the escape plot that added a subtle tension.

The writing flows with a natural ease allowing me to absorb the world building without much effort. At times, when emotions got the upper hand, the easy-to-absorb writing style only underscored the intensity of that particular moment and it was when the characters affected me the most.

Example quote: And just like that, belief spread across his face. Belief and joy. The smile he gave lit him, made him young and wicked and dangerous. He laughed, and pure joy flooded me, sheer elation at seeing life and hope awakening like the dawn in this man who was my life.

The story revolves around a few key characters, there is attention for world building and customs but in a very minimalistic way. Enough to get the picture but not enough to make it come alive in detail.

An Uncommon Whore is a beautiful character driven story with a plot that contains a promise for its sequel. Helios and Griffin make their love, life and world come alive in a way that made me enjoy their story from beginning till end!

3.5 stars

Quote:

1: “I do love you. I may not remember us, Griffin, but my soul remembers. My heart remembers.”

2: I didn't care that I was helpless, because it was Griffin, and I trusted him with my body, with my kingdom, and with my very soul. He drove me until I was ragged with bliss—sated, drained, and completely, utterly fucked.

Belinda McBride on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Buy @ Loose_Id

13 May 2012

Sunday's Brunch; Momma Day

Today I celebrate my mom with a few reflections over the years *grin*

1: Although I may not have shown it at the time you gave me my brother and sister. For which I am eternally grateful!!

2: I still remember the nights when you woke me up as a kid and we went into the city. I remember the wonder of the stars in the sky, the air on my face and you cycling us both to the city where we drank hot cocoa. It was magic to me!!
 
3: You’ve dealt with my impulsive behavior and did so gracefully. It created many embarrassing moments which I will not air on the internet. Yes mom, I have learned some control *wink*

4: You hugged me and patiently passed the tissues when I dealt with my first break-up. I thought my life was over and you didn’t say otherwise, you just let me vocalize my drama.

5: When you gave me the contact add of Henry I thought; “Get real, mom.” Still you got me to write him a letter and I met the man who will forever hold claim to a part of my heart!! You’re such a matchmaker *wink*

6: The love you share with dad makes my romantic heart flutter. I’m so blessed to witness that!! Perhaps I could do without stumbling on you while smooching in the kitchen with dad but hey…I’ll deal with that *grin*

7: When we have family meetings/days you effortlessly order us around to do stuff. Like it is your prerogative. And we do it because we have such fun in the kitchen.

8A: My humor eludes you but you still love me.

8B: When I show half nekkid men to your friends in a restaurant you reconsile with the fact I still have my impulsive moments and you still love me.

8C: You instilled the love for reading in me and you patiently listen to all my ranting and raving about romancelandia without thinking I’ve gone mad.

9: When I just moved in with Henry and went from a rambunctious eight person family to just the two of us you gave me Lady Bug. She brought a liveliness to our home I needed! You understood, without me uttering a word, what a drastic change moving out for me was.

10: In the best and worst times of my life you’ve been there. We laughed, we cried, we hugged, we discussed. You were my wonder woman when I grew up and turned in to my confidante as an adult. Both of us aren’t perfect but I’m happy that you’re my mom!! I hope to have you for so many more years to come (((hugs)))

photo from 2010

08 May 2012

ARC Review: Joely Sue Burkheart - Yours To Take

Format: ebook
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd.
Publication Date: 05-08-2012
ISBN: 139781609286804
Series: The Connaghers #3
Characters: Vicki Connagher, Elias Reyes, Jesse Dean Inglemarre.
Genre: Contemporary romance (BDSM)
Received an e-ARC for review.

Summary Goodreads:
All fire and gunpowder need is a stray spark… 

The day one of her old clients gunned down a cop, former defense attorney Vicki Connagher lost everything—her passion for justice, and her lover, Detective Elias Reyes. The dead cop’s partner. 

Even though she’s following her dream to start her own fashion line, it’s tough with heartache as her only companion. Until she brings Jesse, a wandering street artist, in from a freak Texas snowstorm. His submissive flirting brings out dominant tendencies she never knew she possessed, yet she hesitates to let him take her as far and as hard as she wants to go. 


Some homeless junkie in Vicki’s house? Not on Elias’s watch. Pride kept him away, but as long as Jesse is staying in Vicki’s downstairs shop, he’s staying with Vicki. On the couch, but it’s a start. As the days go by, the three work out an uneasy alliance. But Vicki’s joy at having Elias back in her life is tempered with a growing desire to have it all. Elias in her bed, and Jesse under her command. The only question remaining is if her tough alpha cop is willing to embrace all that she is… 


Product Warnings Explicit sex, BDSM, a tough alpha cop, a reluctant Domme, and a smoldering submissive street artist willing to do anything to belong to her.



Review:

Through a twitter convo I got curious what Yours to Take was all about. I read the blurb and my interest was piqued. I think a threesome is hard to pull off romantic wise and each author creates its own development to make it believable. While Joely Sue Burkhart isn’t an unknown author to me the Connagher series is my introduction to her. I love the tropes she incorporates in this series and the conflicts that arise from it. With Yours To Take I was kept on my toes, I was kept wondering what the dynamics were between these three personable characters I grew to love in their story.

I think Vicki Connagher is the epicenter of this story. I absolutely adore the women in this series. Vicki is creative, emotive, confident yet has a vulnerable streak. She forms a contradiction for me. At one hand she wants to dominate and at the other hand her dynamics with Elias tell me she surrenders to his strength. The interplay between Vicki, Jesse and Elias was something for me to figure out and it confused me at times but also kept me so very involved with the twists and turns in the characterization of every key player in this story.

Elias Reyes is a tough-as-nails cop. He has a commanding presence, goes after what he wants with sheer determination and is sometimes bull-headed. He brought a potent energy to the mix and I loved how he could make Vicki surrender to his touch. His controlled personality stood directly opposite to his explosive intensity in the bedroom.

And then there is Jesse Dean Inglemarre, the starving, homeless artist. From the moment he was introduced in to the story I fell in love with him. He tugged on all my heartstrings with his strength, weaknesses, poise and passions. He was the calm center between these two turbulent, magnetic personalities. What I also really enjoyed was the contradiction in Jesse's and Elias' personalities. Each on their own is an incredible male but together they form the answer to Vicki’s wants and needs. To see that interlock with each other was an interesting journey!

At first sight Vicki, Elias and Jesse seem to have insurmountable problems and I had no clue how they would overcome them. But there was also a fierce and budding love, a woman getting to discover her Domme side and two men who come with their own issues. It entwined in to a challenging romance with animated dialogues which coalesces these three distinctive personalities. There were times where I thought that Jesse would perhaps be second best to Elias. The balance was off, I didn’t feel an emotional connection between Elias and Jesse. Each in his own way vied for Vicki’s heart. Vicki was all that mattered to Elias and Jesse, so by the end, within their own rules and needs, it came together making this Ménage a trois work. I would’ve loved to see a deeper connection form between the two men but that was something that I wanted, not necessarily something the characters needed!

I think in the span of this story (about 155 pages) Burkhart did an incredible job with the character development. They each came alive and engaged me from beginning till end. Their sexy times where spine-tingling good and though I realized Vicki was very much at the beginning of discovering her Domme side I would’ve loved an elaborate scene or two where she gives it her all, instead of feeling a range of insecurities. There was one scene that singed the pages but it felt like Elias was in control of both Vicki and Jesse, and it made me think Vicki was more a switch between the two sides of her than anything else.

I have to give props for the secondary cast because they brought such a flamboyant vibe to the story. I mean Mal and Colby just…WOW. These two together equal pure sexual heat!! Of course various Connaghers have their moments in Yours To Take but none have my love as much as Mama Connagher. First of all, the scraps of info I got on her relationship with her late husband just mesmerized me. I so want their story!! But most of all she enamored me with her straight-forward commanding attitude and the love she bears for her children.

Yours To Take, while not perfect, is a story of enigmatic characters who make the love soar and their sexy moments go from sensual blooming to full-blown passion. The Connaghers are a family to enclose in your heart!

4 stars

Quote 1: Jesse 
But there was something undeniable in his eyes, a deep, soul-piercing light that she couldn’t forget. Without saying a word, he managed to reach inside her and tug, hard, amplifying her guilt and worry.   
Quote 2: Jesse 
Jesse didn’t care if the cop had primary claim on her, not really, as long as she claimed him. He’d do anything she wanted. Hell, he’d beg the cop to do him if that’s what it took to stay close and eventually find his way to her—their—bed.  
Quote 3: Elias 
Leaning against the door jamb, he gave her a sardonic wink. He’d already dressed for the evening. Dark to Jesse’s light, hard to soft, grim to demanding to light and giving, he, too, managed to take her breath away.  
Quote 4: Mama Connagher 
“I didn’t raise a doormat, Beulah Virginia.” Vicki winced at her Mama’s raised voice and held the phone away from her ear. “If you want this man, you tell him to marry you or get the hell out. I love you. Come home as soon as you can.” 

Joely Sue Burkhart on the www:
website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Buy @ Samhain

06 May 2012

Sunday's Brunch: Me & my facebook

Good mooooooorning everyone! I am going to love writing this Sunday’s Brunch post even more than normal cause it has pretty men and uhm, pretty men and I know I had more *crunches memory* Oh…just call me shallow, I’ve got hawt men in this post!! *grin*

The reason I’ve got hawt men in this post is due to social media. I know @erotromreader talked about social media a few weeks back and it got me thinking. I love being social but it is also a time suck. So last week I went to visit my friend, Marissa. Beside the fact that I got sideswiped by the announcement my train wasn’t going any further than Rotterdam and I called her in a panic, she came to save the day and we had a good time! Her little diva made me a pressie and we are so in sync regarding what is important in a drawing. Hearts, butterflies, flowers but most of all it is mainly PINK and has lots of GLITTER!!

I was dazzled:


Marissa and I talked the hours away and suddenly got to talk about facebook. When I started my blog there were two givens; you needed a twitter and facebook account. So I did but facebook and I never fully meshed. I’ve got no idea how Marissa and I got to this topic but she showed me her page and a hunk page she liked. Oh yeah, angels were singing hallelujah at that moment. First of all I love the new timeline feature, so much more dynamic and fun than before. But most of, and this was very important to me in actively participating in the facebook experience, I found a facebook app. It’s a good one, not a great one but it does its job. And since my Ipad is an extension of my body these days it was imperative I found that app. So I revamped my facebook a bit. For some reason it felt right to use a real life photo of myself and I entered the facebook world.

First of all I liked Beautiful Male Bodies…want a taste of what they got, here ya go *wink*


I’m also having plenty of smiles using facebook. Who doesn’t get all happy looking at this:
Find Giggle Palooze on facebook


And I find wisdom from likeminded peeps *wink*


Even when I wake up in the middle of the night and can't fall back to sleep I find treasures at Facebook:


I'm a simple kind of gal sometimes with covers. Give me a fantastic color palet, an interesting setting but most of all a drop-dead gorgeous and lickable guy on the cover and I'm in cover heaven. The first thing I did when looking at this cover was swallow hard. Look at all that skin and fine muscle tone. Add the jeans and cowboy hat and I go *rawr* BRANDED info can be found on Goodreads.

It is safe to say facebook and I rekindled the love and are going strong once more!

Last week has also been the week I had my Nora Roberts binge. After reading The Witness I read; Caroline Moon, Carnal Innocence and Birthright. For now I've had enough :) I will do an Ode to Nora Roberts blogpost that will contain my favorite quotes from these books. I just love the dialogues between a multitude of characters. Lots of laughs, lots of crying as well. So now I'm reading Cut And Run from Abigail Roux and Madeleine Urban, talk about doing an 180 genre wise. I think it is perhaps as long as two years ago that @erotromreader talked to me about these books and only yesterday I started to read the first book in this series. Ty and Zane have great dynamics but for some reason I'm reminded of Martin Riggs and Roger Murtaugh from Lethal Weapon. It's probably my weird mind at work here *eek*


Curious minds always want to know; So what are you guys reading?

05 May 2012

Cover Gallery: Cover & bookgasm of the first order!


Yesterday I lounged about on Twitter talking about baking an angel food cake and all of a sudden Kresley Cole pops up in my timeline revealing a cover and info that got my blood pumping!! I knew she was going to do a spin-off from her IAD series but her foray in YA with Poison Princess isn’t grabbing me at the moment. Shadow's Claim however is me going rabid screaming; Want. Mine.Now.Yes, soooo good!!!! Kresley Cole definitely gave me a bookgasm of epic proportion and the pre-order button has been found and double clicked *wink* 

I know just about every other fan/lover of this series has read the info by now but I just had to shout out…I can never be quiet when it comes to my bookgasms *wink* The cover made me think of Wolverine…something, I think it’s the feral look and the fierce pose of the cover model that makes me think of Wolverine. I’m just loving it! The blurb but most of all Kresley’s own input just tickles my imagination. I think the world this author has built, layer by layer, faction by faction, in her IAD series is paralleled by only a rare few!! Her quirky characters are the heart of this series and I can’t wait to meet more in this spin-off. I confess; Shadow’s Claim is definitely a huge incentive to read LOTHAIRE, which I haven’t read yet to my undying shame *hangs head* 

Fall 2012 #1 
New York Times bestseller Kresley Cole introduces The Dacians, a new paranormal romance collection following the royal bloodline of Dacia, a vampire kingdom hidden within the Lore of the Immortals After Dark.

Shadow’s Claim features Prince Trehan, a ruthless master assassin who will do anything to possess Bettina, his beautiful Sorceress mate, even compete for her hand in a blood-sport tournament—to the death. 

HE WON’T BE DENIED Trehan Daciano, known as the Prince of Shadows, has spent his life serving his people, striking in the night, quietly executing any threat to their realm. The coldly disciplined swordsman has never desired anything for himself—until he beholds Bettina, the sheltered ward of two of the Lore’s most fearsome villains. 

SHE’S BOUND TO ANOTHER Desperate to earn her guardians’ approval after a life-shattering mistake, young Bettina has no choice but to marry whichever suitor prevails—even though she’s lost her heart to another. Yet one lethal competitor, a mysterious cloaked swordsman, invades her dreams, tempting her with forbidden pleasure. 

A BATTLE FOR HER BODY AND SOUL Even if Trehan can survive the punishing contests to claim her as his wife, the true battle for Bettina’s heart is yet to come. And unleashing a millennium’s worth of savage need will either frighten his Bride away—or stoke Bettina’s own desires to a fever-pitch.... 

Quote Kresley Cole from her facebook page: 
Here it is, folks, the cover for SHADOW’S CLAIM! (11.27.12) I hope you love it as much as I do! [Below, I’ve got some more scoop on Trehan’s story and The Dacians Series in general] Background on the image: I put in a few cover requests for this one. I wanted to have the hero looking like he’d just returned from punishing the heroine’s enemies, basically a “you mess with her, you’ll see a man get mean” scenario. I requested mud on his grim face, a menacing stare that says “you’re next,” stuff exploding in the background, clothes all ripped up. And the art department delivered! That, my friends, is Trehan Cristian Daciano to a T! 
Background on the book: Trehan (the master assassin from LOTHAIRE) enters a blood-sport tournament for the hand of Princess Bettina (his halfling mate). I wanted to depict a hero who desires his heroine so much, he’s eager to run into the fray for her, to spit blood with a grin on his face--because with every blow he takes and gives, he’s one step closer to claiming her (of course, Bettina has a mind of her own, and things don’t go exactly as planned for poor Trehan). 
The Dacians Series is a sub-series of the continuing Immortals After Dark, with a focus on the royal Daciano family of vampires. The new books will drive forward the overarching Lore plot and will feature IAD characters--some that we know and love, some we’ve heard about in passing (for instance, Morgana, Queen of the Sorceri, is one of Bettina’s guardians!) I hope you enjoy! :) To preorder, click here: amazon
Kreslye Cole on the www: website | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Pre-Order @ BookDepo

03 May 2012

Review: S.C. Stephens - It's All Relative

Format: ebook
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published November 13th 2010 (first published August 11th 2010)
Language: English
Title: It's All Relative
Characters: Kai, Jessie, Millie.
Setting: Colorado, United States.
Copy downloaded for free at the authors website.

 Summary Goodreads:
The club was packed, the music was loud, and the alcohol was flowing. Jessie couldn’t keep her eyes off of the exotic man drinking by himself across the room. Kai couldn’t keep his gaze from the buxom brunette laughing with her friends at the bar. Fate pulled them together, giving them a night that neither one would soon forget. But then, you know what they say about fate. While their one night of bliss was perfect, neither Jessie nor Kai could have imagined what would be in store for them the next time they met, when fate again crossed their paths. As they both soon discovered, sometimes life places obstacles in the way that are insurmountable...even for soul mates

Review:
When Jessie and Kai meet in a nightclub the attraction is instant and their sensual fire is palpable. They act upon it in the home of Kai and I liked the level of sexiness in the scene portrayed by the author. The situation of a one night stand has been used over and over by authors to set up a variety of conflicts between the main couple but holy Moses, S.C. Stephens knocked me out of my comfort zone with a right hook I didn’t see coming!

While I was still riding a sensual buzz of the hot ‘one-night stand’ scene I flipped onto the next chapter and got presented with ‘the conflict’. My jaw dropped to my iPad because I had no idea how the author was going to solve it. My mind was baffled, I could relate to Kai and Jessie completely and I was preparing myself for a very romance angsty read. Which is something I always enjoy. It was such a disappointment to have that excitement, that thrill and wonder where this story would take me kicked back a great degree when a few pages later I was presented with another story thread that diminished the shocker of the conflict. Now that shock and wonder was changed in to anticipation when the characters would discover their true situation.

So the readers knows it all and this is not necessarily a bad thing. There is still a great deal of angst between Kai and Jessie. However, I feel if the author would’ve taken the mystery step by step instead of dumping it all in one chapter it could have added a tremendous tension for the reader. It would trigger that drive to unravel the mystery and connect all the dots by the end of the story. Now a lot of that tension evaporated within the early stages of the story.

Kai and Jessie are both in their early twenties. They love life, enjoy their work, have a tight-knit family. Kai is from Hawaii and moved to Jessie’s town; Colorado. Both are very personable and charming personalities. They are very much the boy and girl next door. Jessie comes with two friends; Harmony, who is the more quiet and down to earth type which is countered by the flamboyant and sexy April. They have girl talk, girl fights and it’s all very recognizable. The character who instantly warmed my heart was grams Millie. She is just an energetic, warm and meddling grams who everyone wants. Millie’s personality adds a pizzazz I like, her straight forward behavior is so very charming.

S.C. Stephens created a very close related group of characters and kept this story very character driven. It allowed the conflict to get much time and attention. Which had its pros and its cons. It gave way to all the emotions Kai and Jessie felt and experienced together. I enjoyed getting an in-depth view of what drove them in their actions. How the internal conflicts fueled the push and pull between Kai and jessie that was almost unbearable to witness at times. It pulled me in to their story and I was loving it. On the other hand, since this is a four hundred plus pages novel, it also dragged on a multitude of moments. Sometimes I wondered how many times I could endure scenes where Jessie stopped by Kai for mundane things. There was nothing more going on than the dilemma and the mystery, while highly intriguing, lost a bit of its momentum due to the length of the story.

The trials and tribulations of Kai and Jessie change what would’ve been an run-of-the-mill romance in to an emotional and intriguing story. S.C. Stephens has a knack for the out-of-the-box angle in the romantic development. I will definitely keep my eye out for what this author releases!!

3.5 stars

Quote;
Kai Bringing his lips down, just a fraction, they minutely brushed together with hers. He closed his eyes and exhaled, remembering, savoring her taste from last night, equally wanting to savor it again, and wanting to push her away. His head hurt again, while his body and mind shifted in two directions. This was so wrong, but it felt so right. 
Quote
Steeling himself, his fingers already moving to snap shut the phone, he closed his eyes. Picturing her one last time - her smile, her beautiful face framed in dark, curly locks, the sound of her voice when she said his name - Kai imagined that she was the one person on this earth that he would like to experience everything with. He couldn’t think of anyone he’d rather have on this twisted, rollercoaster of a ride called life, than her.
Quote
Panting in her ear, he muttered, “Jessie…stop me…please…stop me.” His voice was strained when he said it, the ache in his voice palpable.

S.C. Stephens on the www:
Facebook | Goodreads | Free @ Feedbooks