Royal Bastards by Andrew Shvarts

 4 Stars

I never expected to love Royal Bastards like I do.

This is one of those books that you can’t even talk about because everything you want to say is a spoiler. I will say there were way more twists than I expected and most of them were not pleasant. There is some romance, but it is definitely not the meat of this story. This is the 1st book in a planned trilogy, and I already know I will read every. single. one. I am in.

The beginning of this book reads more like MG and the vocabulary is oddly modern for the type of historical fantasy I was expecting. When I started I thought it would end up being a light fantasy like My Lady Jane. It definitely takes a darker turn though and sets itself firmly on the YA shelf. It is political, violent and magical with a definite world that is solidly set. I hope the physical book gets a world map, and I can’t wait to see the fan art for these characters (and creatures).

Buy ROYAL BASTARDS Here – (Hardcover)

Buy ROYAL BASTARDS Here – (Kindle)

I received an advance reader copy of this book that I have chosen to review.

Lethal Lies by Rebecca Zanetti (Blood Brothers #2)

4 Stars

Every time I read a new book from Rebecca Zanetti I am reminded of why I love her writing. She pairs lethal, alpha males with smart, spirited females. Each couple gets a happily ever after, but the books within the series still tie together with a complete story arc.  I wasn’t disappointed with Lethal Lies. In fact, I was about midway through the story when I realized I was going to be unexpectedly busy and wouldn’t have time to actually hold the book and read it. I needed to know what was going to happen next and didn’t want to wait until I had time to sit down and read, so I hopped over to Audible and picked up the audio of this book as well. It was so worth it.

While reading Deadly Silence, I had expected Special Agent Loretta Jackson to be Heath’s love interest. She made regular appearances throughout the book, and than at the end was abducted by the Copper Killer. Lethal Lies starts right where the last book left off, but Loretta isn’t Heath’s match, it’s Anya. It took me longer to warm up to this couple than usual, but I think that is more because of my *couple prediction* than the chemistry. Once I got past that, I was sucked back into this plot.

I CANNOT wait for Denver and Noni’s book. This couple has intrigued me from the beginning and I’m so happy that it will finally be their turn. I’m also ready for the guys to put an end to the evil scientist lady, so hopefully that will wrap up in the next one as well.

Buy LETHAL LIES Here – (Kindle)

Buy LETHAL LIES Here – (Audible)

Buy LETHAL LIES Here – (Paperback)

Buy LETHAL LIES Here – (Mass Market Paperback)

I received an advance review copy of this book that I have chosen to review.. But I also purchased a copy on Audible.

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LETHAL LIES EXCERPT

She swallowed and met his gaze. “All right. Let me get this straight. We’re going undercover to flush out a killer who’s obsessed with me, and you’re offering to play at being my man for real with no strings or future?” She hoisted the bag onto her shoulder. “That’s some ego. Are you that good in bed?”

“Yes.” And that was definite interest in her eyes.

She clicked her tongue. “I’ll keep your offer in mind.”

“You do that.” He maintained a low and calm voice. “While you’re considering, let’s look at the situation. You have publicly made me your fiancé in order to draw out a killer, which means I have to act as such. Any halfway intelligent law enforcement officer or private investigator would keep his redheaded fiancée very close after the stunt you just pulled. If you’re not with me, the killer is going to be very suspicious.”

She stilled, expressions crossing her face rapidly. “That’s a good point,” she said slowly.

Yeah. Sometimes reality helped him out a little. Plus, the killer had a hard-on for her, and he must already have plans to take her at some point. She’d just upped the timeline. “In addition, you need protection around the clock now, and I’m willing to provide that. So while you’re keeping my offer in mind, we’ll be staying in the same hotel room or same apartment.” He made sure he had her full attention. “While we plan the wedding, of course.”

Her challenging smile thrilled something inside him. “That’s fair.”

He stepped back to give her some space. “Good. Are you ready?”

“Yes.” She looked around the room. “I do have to ask. What if I didn’t agree with you about your keeping secrets from me? Considering people shoot at you, and I’m going to be at your side, it seems fair that you tell me who these people are.” She cocked her head to the side and focused back on him.

“I have more immediate concerns than being fair,” he said smoothly. “You brought me into this mess.”

A frown drew down her eyebrows. “Listen. I want an answer about you.”

“I just gave you one.” At her mulish expression, he searched for better words that wouldn’t end in an argument.

Suddenly, the door blew wide open and bounced loudly off the table. “Anya!” he yelled, jumping for her.

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ABOUT THE BOOK

Title: LETHAL LIES

Author: Rebecca Zanetti

Series: Blood Brothers, #2

On Sale: May 16, 2017

Publisher: Forever

Trade Paperback: $14.99 USD

eBook: $5.99 USD

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“4 1/2 stars! Top pick! This is a true thriller that will keep readers frantically flipping the pages as death and danger come at the protagonists from several directions.  Zanetti’s brilliance at storytelling is on full display…When it comes to high-octane thrillers, they don’t get better than Zanetti!” —RT Book Reviews on LETHAL LIES

“Zanetti’s stories are always woven with vivid detail and a breakneck pace. As a reader, there’s really no time to draw a peaceful breath until the story ends. Lethal Lies is another winner.” –Heroes & Heartbreakers on LETHAL LIES

“Zanetti balances the adventure and menace of Zara and Ryker’s lives with a relatable romance. The result is a story that’s sexy and emotional, and filled with a rich look at love in all its forms.” —The Washington Post on DEADLY SILENCE

“Budget your time, readers, because this is one that’s hard to put down.” — Heroes & Heartbreakers on DEADLY SILENCE

A deadly secret can’t stay buried forever . . .

Revenge. It’s the only thing that will help Anya Best sleep at night. The serial killer who murdered her sister is on the loose, and Anya will stop at nothing to put him behind bars—even use herself as bait to lure him out of hiding. But she can’t do this alone.

Private investigator Heath Jones’s job is to bring bastards to justice. This time it’s personal. He knew the Copper Killer’s latest victim so when her sister asks for his help, he’s all in. But when Anya uses the media to taunt the killer, she exposes Heath’s identity, putting them both in jeopardy. Now, secrets buried long ago are coming to light and the forces determined to destroy him are watching Heath’s every move, waiting to exact their own revenge. And they’ll use anything and anyone to get to Heath.

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THE BLOOD BROTHERS SERIES

DEADLY SILENCE, #1

LETHAL LIES, #2

TWISTED TRUTHS, #3

Series Page on Goodreads

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rebecca Zanetti is the author of over twenty-five romantic suspense, dark paranormal, and contemporary romances, and her books have appeared multiple times on the New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon bestseller lists. She has received a Publisher’s Weekly Starred Review for Wicked Edge, Romantic Times Reviewer Choice Nominations for Forgotten Sins and Sweet Revenge, and RT Top Picks for several of her novels.  She lives in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest with her own alpha hero, two kids, a couple of dogs, a crazy cat…and a huge extended family.  She believes strongly in luck, karma, and working her butt off…and she thinks one of the best things about being an author, unlike the lawyer she used to be, is that she can let the crazy out.

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Falling Hard by Lexi Ryan (The Blackhawk Boys #4)


4.5 Stars

Once I’m invested in a series, I no longer read the blurbs. I prefer to go in blind and just trust the author. What a shock for me when I started this one, and EMMA IS NOT OLIVIA! Part of me was relieved because Olivia grinds my nerves like no other, but I was also disappointed because I knew Keegan wanted his family together.

There was no need to be disappointed, Emma is a doll and I loved her with Keegan. Keegan has matured so much since becoming a father and it shows. They had a brief but intense relationship when they were younger. They both have heartbreaking secrets from “before” that affected their relationship both then and now.

All the previous couples make a quick appearance in this one, but it is completely standalone. Lexi Ryan wrote this well, and you won’t feel like you are missing anything if you haven’t read the other books yet. That teaser for the next book though?!?!?!?!? I NEED IT NOW.

I received an advance review copy of this book that I have chosen to review.

 

Title: Falling Hard
Series: The Blackhawk Boys #4
Author: Lexi Ryan
Genre: Sports Romance
Release Date: May 23, 2017

 

Blurb

 

An NFL player with a secret past, and the one woman with the power to turn his world inside out…
Former actress Emma Rothschild is partying in Vegas in disguise. But I’m not fooled. Five years ago, I knew that body better than my own, and I haven’t forgotten a single detail—not the curve of her hip beneath my hand or the hitch in her breath when I kiss her neck.
When Emma’s unexpectedly left alone in Sin City, I agree to spend the weekend with her. As friends. Why not? If I can knock down the toughest guys in the NFL, I’m strong enough to keep my hands to myself, even if she is the sexiest woman I’ve ever met.
Emma is part of my past—years so shrouded in secrets that not even my best friends know the truth about who I am. I’m a single dad now and not interested in revisiting my old ways or trying to win back the only woman I ever let close enough to break my heart.
But this is Vegas, where all bets are off, and with Emma, nothing ever goes as planned…

 

***

 

“A sexy, sweet, oh-so-emotional second chance romance that will make you believe in the power of fate and forgiveness.” – USA Today Bestseller Lili Valente

 

***

 

FALLING HARD is a sexy and emotional novel intended for mature readers. It’s the fourth book in the world of the Blackhawk Boys, but can be enjoyed as a standalone.
Football. Secrets. Lies. Passion. These boys don’t play fair. Which Blackhawk Boy will steal your heart?
Book 1 – SPINNING OUT (Arrow’s story)
Book 2 – RUSHING IN (Christopher’s story)
Book 3 – GOING UNDER (Sebastian’s story)
Book 4 – FALLING HARD (Keegan’s story)
Book 5 – IN TOO DEEP (Mason’s story, coming fall 2017)

 

 

Purchase Links

 

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

Excerpt

 

“You’re too beautiful,” I tell her. I run my thumb along her jaw. “Too fucking beautiful.”“I’ve missed you. You’re the best man I’ve ever met.”

My stomach clenches and I shake my head. “Don’t think that. It’s a lie. It’s what I wanted you to believe. Don’t bring that lie into tonight.”

“How was it a lie?” She grins up at me, and I know a full confession would erase all the happiness from her face.

“When we were together before, I wasn’t the man you thought I was. I wasn’t good.” It’s the closest to the truth I’ve ever given anyone about my past.

“So you don’t want me believing you’re good?”

I pull her hips tightly against me as I exhale in frustration. She still thinks this is some kind of joke. “I’m different now, but then…”

She lifts onto her toes and flicks her tongue against my ear. “Don’t be so different. I like you a little bad.”

I groan and stop dancing. I don’t know how much longer I can do this without diving over the line. “Is that permission to stop being your friend?” I’m obsessed with knowing if she tastes as sweet as I remember. And if I swipe my tongue over the sensitive spot beneath her ear, will she gasp like she always did?

She shrugs and grins, and the dance floor tilts off balance. It’s crowded, and we’re surrounded by writhing bodies, cocooned in the crowd. I turn her in my arms so her back is to my front and settle my hand against the soft skin of her midriff. She arches her back and rubs against me.

I sweep her hair to the side, and when I press my lips to the long, smooth column of her neck, she trembles against me.

“Are you okay?” I ask against her ear. “Is this okay?”

“I—I’m not sure…”

“Tell me what you want. Not five years ago. Not tomorrow. What do you want right now?”

She reaches back and threads her fingers through my hair to guide my mouth back to her neck.

I don’t hesitate. I kiss and suck on that tender skin while we move to the beat.

The rest of the room fades and one song blurs into the next. A waitress comes by selling shots, and I buy two, one for each of us, and we lock eyes as we throw them back. At some point, I’m vaguely aware of Bailey checking on me, but my focus is one hundred percent on Emma, on this night that takes me back to when I was eighteen and so fucking in love it hurt. Tonight, Emma isn’t the woman who once broke my heart. She isn’t the girl who wrote me off with a simple goodbye note and apologies I didn’t want. Tonight, she’s a dream, my fantasy in the flesh, my reward for surviving the hardest year of my whole life.

When her face begins to blur, I realize I’m way more drunk than I ever intended. I need to sober up or I’m not going to remember a minute of this night. “Want to get out of here?”

She nods, takes my hand, and leads me out of the bar and down the hall to the elevators. My watch reads a quarter past two.

“Let’s get some food,” I suggest, but at the same moment, an elevator dings and the doors slide open.

Emma grabs my hand and drags me inside. “I don’t want food,” she says, punching a button.

I spin her around and press her against the wall. “What do you want, Em?” I drop my hand to her side to skim my knuckles over her skirt, and she widens her stance to part her thighs. “Fuck,” I whisper. I shouldn’t do this. Not here, not when any moment someone could join us on the elevator, not when we’re both so damn drunk it’s a wonder we can stand upright. But shouldn’t is so much weaker than want, and I want to touch her more than I want anything right now.

I’m faintly aware of the soft beeping of the passing floors as I slide my hand up her skirt and cup her between her legs. She gasps, and I rub my fingers over the damp lace of her panties, teasing her swollen flesh.

When the elevator stops and the doors slide open, she grabs my wrist and holds me still. “Please,” she whispers in my ear. “Please. Don’t stop.” Then she tilts her hips and rocks against my hand. I couldn’t refuse her if every person in the hotel was watching us.

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Coming Soon
#5 In Too Deep – Mason’s story iBOOKS PRE-ORDER

Author Bio
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of emotional romance that sizzles, Lexi enjoys reading, sunshine, a good glass of wine, and rare trips to the beach. Lexi lives in Indiana with her husband, two children, and neurotic dog. You can find her at her website: http://www.lexiryan.com/

 

Author Links

Ginny Moon by Benjamin Ludwig

4 Stars

This book was a surprise for me. It was an impulsive pick after reading a quick excerpt from in it one of the Buzz Books samplers. Upon receipt, I promptly forgot why I was so excited for it and it got pushed down the TBR. I finally picked it up in my post ACOWAR haze because I needed a non-romance, non-fantasy book. I almost exclusively read romance & fantasy, so I didn’t have many options on my list.

IT WAS GOOD.

From the first page, I instantly remembered why I had requested this book. Ginny is such a unique voice in the book world. Her point of view is captivating and seeing the world from where she stands was both heartwarming and heartbreaking. I was entranced to say the least, and finished the book within 12 hours of picking it up. I got emotional at points and desperately wanted to save Ginny from herself. I both empathized with and hated her “Forever Mom”. I understood where she was coming from in that protective new mom focus but wished she was stronger in her dedication to Ginny. I couldn’t look away from this book. I wanted to save Ginny and her Baby Doll.

Buy GINNY MOON Here – (Kindle)

Buy GINNY MOON Here – (Hardcover)

Buy GINNY MOON Here – (Audible)

I received an advance review copy of this book that I have chosen to review.

Dominic by Marie James (Cerberus MC #4)

4.5 Stars

After finishing Shadow, I was eager to start Dominic. I was eager for the book, but not necessarily the character. Dom hasn’t been around Cerberus much because he’s been away with the military. He is Kincaid’s brother, and while not a full member,  he is accepted and does help with missions when he is in town.

I didn’t read the blurb, so going in I expected him to be with Bri. He is definitely not with Bri, but Mak is a gorgeous pink haired spitfire that is trying to deal with the horrors of her past. I loved her instantly and the attraction between them is intense. This is another one that I had a hard time putting down. Dom is into BDSM so the sex scenes are different from previous books. I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as Shadow, but it was still a very solid book. I am so excited about Snatch’s book. I need to know what’s going on with him. Hopefully its released soon!

Buy DOMINIC Here – (Kindle) Also available on Kindle Unlimited

To start the series from the beginning:

Buy KINCAID Here – (Kindle) Also available on Kindle Unlimited

Buy KID Here – (Kindle) Also available on Kindle Unlimited

Buy SHADOW Here – (Kindle) Also available on Kindle Unlimited

I received advance review copies of these books that I have chosen to review.

Title: Dominic
Series: Cerberus MC #4
Author: Marie James
Genre: Contemporary Romance/MC
Release Date: May 11, 2017

 

Blurb
Dominic Anderson knows exactly what he wants in life:
simplicity, safety, and solidarity with his brothers. He’s vowed to spend each
day living his life exactly how he chooses since the day his wife betrayed him
and his four year military career turned into twenty.
Returning home after retirement from the Marines, he’s
traded the sand in the Middle East for that of the New Mexico desert, Humvees
for a motorcycle, and the comradery of men in uniform for the occasional woman
at his feet.
Life was perfect until Makayla “Poison” Evans, Renegade MC
Princess, knocked on his door, bruises on her face, neck, and arms, and no
money to pay the cab driver. Pink hair, perfect body, and a mouth that Dom
yearned to teach a million lessons, Mak asks more from him than he’s conceded
to a woman in decades.
She needs his help, his protection, and against his better
judgment, she expects him to keep her secrets. Only her secrets are deadly,
dangerous, and have the potential to start a war between two MCs.
At what point does safeguarding a woman become a betrayal to
the men Dominic calls his family? More importantly, can he get back the
sanctity of his home once Makayla is no longer in the picture, or will he be
forever tainted by her poison? 
Purchase Links
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
Free in Kindle Unlimited

 

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AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

Always free in Kindle Unlimited

 

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

Free in Kindle Unlimited

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

Free in Kindle Unlimited

Author Bio
Marie James is a full-time working mother of two amazing
little boys and wife of almost 13 years. She enjoys reading in her spare time,
and diet coke is always near. Central Texas is where Marie calls home and has
lived most of her life. With 13 published books under her belt, she has no
desire to stop writing anytime soon and has dozens of book ideas to keep her
busy.
Author Links

Shadow by Marie James (Cerberus MC #3)

5 Stars

This book was quite literally unputdownable. Each time I read one of the books in the Cerberus MC series, I think that it is the best one I’ve read. But THIS ONE was THE BEST ONE!

The characters develop more and more with each book until you feel like you know them. Each book seems to have a few slightly overlapping scenes so you get to see the same scenes play out from different points of view. Not in a repeated dialogue type of way, but more of the “I know whats going on across the room” type of way. This could definitely be read as a standalone, but part of the enjoyment I got out of it was getting to know the characters throughout the series.

Dominic is next on my TBR and I can’t wait to get into it.

Buy SHADOW Here – (Kindle) <— Also available on Kindle Unlimited

If you need to start the series from the beginning you can start with Kincaid which is currently free for a limited time.

Buy KINCAID Here – (Kindle) <— Also available on Kindle Unlimited

Buy KID Here – (Kindle) <— Also available on Kindle Unlimited

I received advance review copies of these books that I have chosen to review.

Kid by Marie James (Cerberus MC #2)

5 Stars

I was skeptical when I started this series. I love Marie James, but I’m not always the biggest fan of MC romances. This is not your normal motorcycle club. These guys aren’t needlessly violent and breaking the law. These are military vets that rescue women that have been abducted and thrust into the nefarious world of sex trafficking. There are still club women and parties, but these are all around good guys.

Khloe is young and broken. She’s lived a hard life that just keeps getting harder. She’s hit rock bottom when Kid comes into her life. I’ve liked Kid in the previous books, but I fell I fell in love with him in Kid. I loved the way he loved Khloe and his self imposed “not until she’s 18” rule was chivalrous for a self-proclaimed man-whore. This book is not without its heartbreaking moments and you will gasp, and say “NO!” and probably throw your Kindle. Just a fair warning. It happens.

I’ve loved diving into these books so far, and can’t wait to start reading Shadow. Marie James has a fan for life.

Buy KID Here – (Kindle) <— Also available on Kindle Unlimited

If you haven’t started this series yet, start with the first one. Kincaid is free for a limited time, and also on Kindle Unlimited so you really have no excuse. You can read my original review here. While these are standalones, you will love how they build on each other.

Buy KINCAID Here – (Kindle) <— Also available on Kindle Unlimited

I’ve received advance review copies of these books that I have chosen to review.