Tag Archives: 3.5 stars

Release Day Blitz: Fighting to Stay by Kasey Millstead

Cover: Cover It Designs
Release Date: December 15, 2013
“Never stay, Lacey. Promise me. Promise right now, that whenever things go bad in life, you will run. Never, ever stay.”Lacey Monroe was used to running. When things got bad, when things got dangerous, when there was a chance that she would get hurt – physically or emotionally – she did what her momma said. She ran. She kept running, until she landed in Salt Rock, Alabama. She meets Roam Cooper, the Vice President of the Mayhem Motorcycle Club and for the first time in her life, Lacey considers staying…and then, right before her eyes, her world falls apart. And she runs again.“No more runnin’, Lacey. ‘Bout time you started fighting to stay.” – Roam.

**This is a stand-alone, full length novel with a happy ever after**


lynsey
4 out of 5 

I honestly don’t know if I have the right words for this book other than it was bloody fantastic. I have really enjoyed reading this one, yes it was a MC book, BUT it seemed to have so much more than some of the MC books around lately. This book had funny one liners, fantastic characters, angst and yes a few tears as well. Roam is a typical MC bad boy but when he says “sugar” in that southern drawl women within a 2 mile radius swoon. Lacey is pretty kick ass too although at times I did think she needed to grow a spine and start throwing some punches around. All in all I would definitely recommend this book it is well worth the read, I would also say 4 out of 5 as it did seem to be over quick as it could have been longer. The sex is soooo hot too it made me have to fan myself several times. Just the way I like it.

mandy

3.5 out of 5

Kasey’s Cowboys Down Under series sold me on her writing so of course I was motivated to read a biker romance from her. And Fighting to Stay is well written, but I just couldn’t get attached the characters. I did not like Lacey. In my opinion, she was selfish and immature. She made rash decisions and put her best friend in a precarious position with her man. I also never felt like she really had strong emotions for Roam. She went from in lust and determined to run at the first sign of hurt to in love and there wasn’t enough between these two emotions in the storyline for me to get behind her. As I type this it has occurred to me that my real hang up with this book is it felt rushed. It’s not a long read at all. I read it in less than 3 hours. I need more of a build up or for something to happen that pulls me in and makes me feel some connection with the story and I never got that. I think if this book was longer and had more of that intangible “thing” to suck me in, I would have enjoyed this more. Kasey Millstead is a good writer and it was a good story, but for me it wasn’t a great story. This will not sway me in pursuing future books by Kasey Millstead and for some of you this will be a great story.

Kasey Millstead lives a quiet life in country New South Wales, Australia, with her husband and their four young children. She enjoys baking, singing (ridiculously out of tune) & spending time with friends and family. Kasey has always harboured a deep love for reading and writing, and she is now lucky enough to be living her dream of being an Author.
 
 

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Reviews: If Only & Release (Captured Series) by Louise J

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If Only

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Release

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IfOnlyBookCover

lorraine

3 out of 5

I really liked both Joe and Callie, and I was rooting for them to get together from the first chapter.  Then I continued to root for them through chapters 2 through like 30, which spanned over a ten year period.  I was super excited when they finally got together, so I wanted to scream when circumstances got in the way so they were only together for about three days.  This begins another 10 chapters or so spanning over another two or three years.  Don’t worry, they eventually get their HEA, it was probably just the longest road to get there that I have ever read.  I liked the story but the star-crossed lovers thing grates on me after awhile, especially when the obstacles in their way were much of their own making, so I was past ready for Joe and Callie to be together by the time they did.  Personally, this is going into my take or leave it pile, but I truly feel that there are probably a lot of people out there who are going to enjoy this as it is extremely well written.  I would recommend this to someone in the mood for a lighter read.  Bonus:  It can be read as a stand-alone.

 

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Callie
What’s a girl to do when she meets a man who claims the heart that she’s already given to someone else? My boyfriend is everything I’ve ever wanted, he’s perfect, but when I met Joe … I can’t even describe the intensity of my attraction to him. I’d never experienced anything like it before. Since then, it’s become something so much deeper and I’m finding it impossible to ignore what I feel for him. I know I’m already with the man I should be with, yet I want Joe. I can’t seem to get my head and my heart to agree on this. I’m not about to cheat and I won’t just drop the man I love. But what do I do about Joe?

Joe
Tattoos, bikes and women – that’s been my life for the last two years and it suited me just fine. Until the day I swerved to avoid a raggedy old VW Bug heading my way, hit the sidewalk, and ended up sprawled on my back. I came around to a pounding headache and the most gorgeous girl I’ve ever seen. Don’t know if it was the effect she had on me, or the accident, but I somehow managed to let her go without exchanging information, more importantly numbers. Maybe it would’ve been better if things had stayed that way. Maybe then I wouldn’t be caught up in this dilemma. I should do what most guys would do and pursue her, regardless of her being in a relationship. Trust me, it’s tempting. The problem is, I’ve been on the receiving end of a situation similar to this, so I know the hurt I could cause and I don’t think I can do that. But I want Callie. I want her bad.

When Callie and Joe met, neither were prepared for the sequence of events that would follow, or the impact of the choices they would go on to make.

If only is book one in the Captured series. Adult Contemporary Romance. This series is not intended for those below 18 years old due to graphic sexual content and use of language.

 

ReleaseBookCover

lorraine

3.5 out of 5

I was half expecting for this to go into my take or leave it pile since I wasn’t totally in love with the first in this series, but I was pleasantly surprised how much more I liked Release.  This one can also be read as a stand-alone as it takes place in the same time frame, but it doesn’t give anything away.  Dane and Brooklyn were both likeable characters and their relationship actually had realistic ups and downs.  Dane is a bad boy player type, so Brooklyn is understandably very insecure because she has trouble believing when he tells her she is different for him.  Dane has trouble dealing with her insecurities, especially since he has his own hang ups to deal with on the relationship front.  Louise J’s writing style shined through a little better here.  I will give the third in this series a try.  My hesitancy comes from the fact that I dislike Gerard’s character and I’m not sure if he can redeem himself from the Kayla thing, but I’ll try to go in with an open mind and not completely hate him, hopefully there is something redeemable in his story.

 

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Brooklyn
I knew from the start that I should stay away from Dane, and I would have – if he’d stayed away from me. Astoundingly sexy with a consuming presence of unspoken command, he enthralls me to the point of almost being incapable of rational thoughts, almost being incapable of resisting him. My hands want to explore him. My tongue wants to taste him. My body begs to experience him. I crave him. Now he’s starting to intrude on a level that’s harder to fight. I know what he wants from me. I also know that Dane is not the type of man you expect to keep.

Dane
Things are never straightforward with women like Brooklyn. She’s not the kind whose bed you can slip out of and walk away from without ‘special connections’ or ‘emotions’ expected or offered. She’s the type of woman I prefer to keep my distance from, but like an undersexed, hormonal idiot, I still pursued her. I swear getting turned on by her is like getting turned on for the first time in my life. Now I have her in my grasp, but I know where this will lead. And I’m never the one that gets hurt in situations like this.

A woman who has barely put her broken-self back together and a man who turned his back on love a long time ago. When Dane and Brooklyn first met it appeared to be a simple case of lust between two opposites, but it was the beginning of an intense, emotional journey that would bring forth the pain they both attempted to leave in their pasts, and an encapsulation of feelings neither welcomed but were powerless to stop. Sometimes in life there is no choice but to take a risk.

*Release takes place in the months leading up to the end of If Only (book one in the Captured series), and includes major spoilers from Joe and Callie’s story.

*This book contains graphic sexual content.

 

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Louise J has always been a daydreamer, but never considered writing a novel until days before typing the first words to If Only. Joe and Callie (and Gerard) appeared in a dream and her mind has never been her own since then, and she’s never alone. When she’s not writing she spends a lot of time missing out on huge chunks of conversation, movies, and TV shows thanks to many wonderful, but highly invasive characters bouncing around in her head, showing her their stories. In the name of research, those fabulous characters have led her to parts of the world she never would have dreamed of, and, as a result, has gained some of the most amazing memories. The rest of the time Louise J is trying to be a good wife to the greatest husband she could ever have asked for.

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Filed under 3 Stars, 3.5 Stars, Contemporary, Friendship, Lorraine, Review

Blog Tour: Reviews, Excerpt & Giveaway: Remy by Katy Evans

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lorraine

3.5 out of 5

I LOVE this series and Remy is just as hot here as he is in the first two and I’m totally going to fangirl all over Katy Evans if I ever meet her in person.  I was counting down the days until this released, dying to read their story from Remy’s POV.  I could sit here and go back over the million and one reasons why I love Remy and Brooke, but I won’t because I did that in my review of Mine, check it out here.  If you are reading this review, then you’ve probably already read Real and Mine, love them as much as I do, and just want to know if this is as good as you hope.  If you haven’t read them, what the hell is wrong with you?  Go!  Go!  Go!  Right now!  Read them!

On a whole, I did enjoy this and loved reading Remy’s obsession for Brooke, and his whole alpha man “MINE” attitude, but I did have some disappointments.  I really admire Katy Evans for tackling bipolar disorder throughout this series, and I was really looking forward to that aspect from Remy’s POV and I feel those scenes were mostly brushed over.  I do understand why it was written this way, as there is the aspect that Remy doesn’t remember much when he goes black, I just feel that Katy Evans is an amazing enough writer to have delved into that a little deeper.

I was also hoping for more background details on what happened to Remy with his folks, how being in a mental institution shaped him, and what led him to the fighter he became.  I felt like the majority of his side focused on sex with Brooke and fighting scenes that went over my head a little because I don’t follow that sport.  Despite all of that, this entire series is on my favorites list and I will be reading again when I need to satisfy my need for a sizzling hot love story and I will most definitely be reading the next two in this series, Pandora and then Melanie’s stories.

mandy

3.5 out of 5

Real and Mine are happy place books for me.  They were great reads! You can read my thoughts, here and here. And you can rake me over the coals for saying this, but REMY should have been a long bonus scene covering from just before the wedding to the scene that we are left with at the end of Remy. The rehashing of the scenes from the first two books from Remy’s point of view weren’t necessary for me. Remy is a man of few words. His point of view can really be summarized into: Remy eats and fights. Remy trains. Remy smells Brooke. Remy fucks Brooke. Mine. Mine. Mine. Remy loves Brooke.

Katy Evans, of course, tells it much better and with more eloquence, but ultimately I must be raw and rate Remy with a 3.5. I had hopes that Katy would touch more on Remy’s family history and more on his struggles with being Bipolar. I had hoped to see how Remy going black and the need to care for a child would rank with Brooke and how they would handle it. But as with all things in life, you don’t always get what you want. Unless you’re Remy, then you get Brooke. And for Remy, that’s everything.

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Underground fighter Remington Tate is a mystery, even to himself. His mind is dark and light, complex and enlightening. At times his actions and moods are carefully measured, and at others, they spin out of control.

Through it all, there’s been one constant: wanting, needing, loving, and protecting Brooke Dumas. This is his story; from the first moment he laid eyes on her and knew, without a doubt, she would be the realest thing he’s ever had to fight for.

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Teaser

“Pete, you think I need a sports rehab specialist?” I ask.

“No, Rem.”

“Why not?”

“You’re an asshole, dude. You hardly let the masseuses massage you for more than twenty minutes.”

“I need one now.” Pushing my iPad over to him, I tap the screen and signal to the name below her image. “I need that one.”

Pete lifts an interested eyebrow. “You do. Do you?”

“I need a sports rehab specialist on my payroll. I want her to tend to me every day. In whatever ways they do.”

He smirks. “They don’t do blow jobs, I’ll tell you that.”

“If I wanted a blow job, I could have had three just now. What I want . . .” Once again, my finger taps over her name. “Is this sports rehab specialist.”

Pete’s eyebrows fly up to his hairline, and he leans back and crosses his arms. “What exactly do you want her for?”

I chomp down the rest of my food, then take a long gulp of water so I can speak. “I want her for me.”

“Rem . . .” he says in warning.

“Offer her a salary she can’t decline.”

Pete answers me with a puzzled silence. He seems taken aback and is trying to make sense of me. He’s looking into my eyes, and I can tell he’s observing whether they are black or blue.

I’m not black. So I wait quietly. He sighs, slowly jots down her name, and speaks cautiously. “All right, Remington, but let me say, this has Bad Idea written all over it.”

Shoving my plate aside, I lean back and cross my arms.

My head betrays me half the time. One day, it tells me I am god. The other, it tells me that I not only rule hell, but I invented it. Does Pete think I give one fuck about what his own head thinks about my idea? I don’t listen to my head anymore. I listen only to my gut.

“I want her watching me fight Saturday,” I remind him as I get up and shove my chair back under the table. And I want her watching from the bet seats in the house.”

“Remington . . .”

“Just do it, Pete,” I say as I cross the living room back to the master.

“I already have the tickets ready to go, dude, but it’s hard enough keeping Diane from knowing of your . . . er, issues . . . It’s going to be even harder to keep it from someone like this sports rehab specialist.”

I prop my shoulder at the threshold of my bedroom and think about that. I lower my voice. “Make her sign a contract, so I have guaranteed time with her. And stabilize me the instant I start losing my shit.”

“Remington, just let me get some other girls—”

“No, Pete. No other girls.”

I shut myself in my room and grab my headphones, then just lie there with my iPod in my hand, staring at it.

What will it be like if I make her mine?

I don’t delude myself into thinking that she will accept me, but what if she does? What if she can understand me? The way I am? The two parts of me? No. Not two parts. Every. Single. Fucking. Part. Of me.

My gut tightens as I remember the way her eyes shone when she looked at me. The way they softened after I kissed her and she looked into my eyes, wanting more of me.

I have never seen a look quite like that before. I have been wanted by thousands of women. Nobody has ever looked at me with such open, frightened longing as her.

She was not frightened of me. She was frightened of “it.” This same thing clenching my gut that has me all tangled up. Every cell in my body is buzzing with awareness. Every inch of my skin is awake. My muscles feel primed like they do when I’m ready to fight. Except I’m not ready to fight now. I’m ready to go get my mate.

God help her.

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Hey! I’m Katy Evans and I love family, books, life, and love. I’m married with two children and three dogs and spend my time baking, walking, writing, reading, and taking care of my family. Thank you for spending your time with me and picking up my story. I hope you had an amazing time with it, like I did. If you’d like to know more about books in progress, look me up on the Internet, I’d love to hear from you!

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Filed under 3.5 Stars, Alpha Men, ARC, Athletes, Blog Tour, Contemporary, Fighters, Giveaway, Lorraine, Mandy, Novella, Review

Review: No Flag by Liz Borino

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lorraine

3.5 out of 5

No Flag was different from any other book in the M/M and BDSM genre than I have read before.  I didn’t really understand the concept of a Domestic Discipline relationship.  Domestic Discipline seems to resemble the Master/slave dynamic in some ways, but…calmer, less passionate maybe?  It’s definitely unique.

Mike is an officer in the Army.  He is severely OCD and seems almost emotionless, perhaps a little robotic.  Will is a bartender, young and eager, almost like a puppy at moments.  They meet, fall in love, and get married.  Mike has a list of rules that must be followed by Will and if things aren’t done right Will gets a spanking.  Neither of them get turned on by this, it’s like a father disciplining his child for not doing his chores.  I was a little annoyed and disappointed by this, but then I kind of realized this wasn’t really a love story about how two men hook up, it was more a story of two men’s journey through the fire together.  So then it got better for me.

Liz Borino did a commendable job portraying the struggle dealing with a military partner being gone for an extended period of time.  Regardless of a couple’s dynamic, this is a universal theme for the military life.  The sleepless nights apart, the constant strain and worry about their safety, the added strain of taking on extra responsibilities to ensure the spouse comes home to what they left behind.  Then the hell of coping when the spouse comes home, injured and not the person they were when they left.  It is a struggle that many couples do not make it through.  This is where I started to truly understand what Mike and Will loved about each other, and I was happy with the book overall.  Was it an epic, passion driven love story?  No.  While No Flag was by no means a “light read”, it was a quieter kind of love story.  Well worth a read if you are looking for something a little different to change it up a little.  I think I’ll be giving some of her other books a whirl as well.

 

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For Mike and Will, “No Flag” meant “come home alive”, but will their love survive what happens next?

Captain Mike Kelley does not ignore his intuition, so when sexy bartender Will Hayes captures his heart, Mike embarks on a mission to win him over to a Domestic Discipline relationship.  Will accepts with one caveat: Mike must promise not to renew his Army contract.  Mike agrees, and they spend a year building a life together, getting married, and starting a business.

Only days before their café’s grand opening, Mike receives news that threatens everything he and Will have built.  The Army invokes the Stop Loss military policy to involuntarily extend his commission and send him back overseas.  Will, left alone to cope with the café, must rely on the support of old friends who may no longer be trustworthy.  Through emails and Skype calls, Mike and Will keep their love and structure alive…until the day a horrific terrorist attack occurs on Mike’s outpost.

Mike awakens in a hospital with a devastating injury and no memory of the attack. As the only survivor, Mike’s memory may be the key to national security. Mike struggles to cope with his injury and Will struggles to support the man who always held him up.  Both fear they have lost their previous relationship.  Will has Mike back rather than a folded flag, but in the aftermath of war, can they rebuild the life they had before?  Especially when those closest to them may not have their best interests at heart?

*Contains BDSM elements in the context of a loving relationship.*

 

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Liz Borino

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Release Day Blitz & Reviews: Tease by Missy Johnson

Male escort.That got your attention.

Some of the most powerful and well known women in the country pay to have sex with me, some of them married. Some are into more than just straight sex, which is why they call me. Bondage, power play, submission…nothing is off the table. I will do anything for the right price.

The stories I could tell you about a certain high profile congresswoman, or that innocent blonde actress. Trust me, she’s not so innocent.

Guys would kill for my job. I’m living the fucking dream. Meaningless sex, no relationship hang-ups and I’m rolling in the dough. Life is perfect, just the way it is.

Until I meet her.

She changes everything.

She makes me want more than I’ve ever wanted for myself and she believes in me. But she also thinks I sell insurance. I can’t stop what I do, but I can’t give her up.

Eventually, my two worlds are going to collide and when they do, shit will hit the fan.

mandy
3.5 out of 5

Tease was a shorter read, but it was packed full of Coop. Coop is our lead and the book is solely from his point of view. Coop is a male escort and he is very good at his job. And he has very good reasons for doing what he does. I enjoyed reading about him in action. (SEXY sexy times!) I enjoyed the banter between Coop and other characters. I understood his dilemma and when things blew up in his face, I was worried that the ending that I hoped for Coop would be lost. But Missy pulled through and I will be checking out Promiscuous, the companion novel to Tease, when it releases in early 2014.

Honestly, Tease really was a good read. I love Missy’s writing style! I fell for it with Seduce and then Beautiful Rose. But I did have some issues with Tease. The writing is sound and the storyline was well planned out, but our heroine, Mia, was a very weak character. I could take her or leave her.  My heart was with Coop and his story. I don’t feel like I had enough of Mia and Coop, as a unit, and it left me emotionally unattached to their fate as a couple. I feel like it was the story of a male escort and his desire for more than sex for money. Not a romance story where I feel attached to the couple and have a burning desire for them to find their happily ever after. Am I glad that I read this? Absolutely. Would I recommend it? Absolutely. But I would recommend it with the advice that if you are looking for an epic love affair, then pick another book for now.  If you want to fall for a male escort and root for him to find peace and a future, then Tease by Missy Johnson is your next read.  

lorraine
 3.5 out of 5

On a whole, I enjoyed Tease.  Coop was an incredible male lead, and as his character is a male escort, the sex scenes were smokin’ HOT!  I liked Coop instantly and I was 100% invested in rooting for him to get his HEA.  While the story itself is well written, I didn’t like his love interest, Mia.  I felt like her character lacked personality, and I would have liked to see Coop end up with someone with a little more sass.

I’ve read other books by Missy Johnson that I absolutely loved and the few things I didn’t care for in Tease is not going to keep me from reading others by her.  I do also still feel this one is worth a read when looking for something on the lighter, but still sexy side.  There is also a companion story, Promiscuous, that features one of the characters in Tease that I really liked and would like to see get an HEA. 

Missy lives in a small town in Central Victoria with her husband, and her confused pets (a dog who think she’s a cat, a cat who thinks he’s a dog…you get the picture).

When she’s not writing, she can usually be found looking for something to read.

 

COMING DECEMBER 26

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