Category: Opposites attract

Hotshot Doc by R.S. Grey

Book: Hotshot Doc

Series: a standalone

Author: R.S. Grey

Release date: 6 December 2018

Main characters: Bailey Jennings, surgical assistant and guardian to her younger sister. Matt Russell, terrifying surgeon at the top of his game, who’s about to meet his match in Bailey.

Dr. Russell has a bad reputation around our hospital. The scrub techs say he’s cold-blooded, the nurses say he’s too cocky for his own good, and the residents say he’s the best surgeon in the world—really, just a swell guy!—on the off chance he’s within earshot.

I try to avoid him and his temper at all costs. It’s just as easy to admire his sexy, grip-it-while-he’s-ravishing-you hair and chiseled jaw from a healthy distance, preferably from the other end of the hallway…half-hidden behind a plant.

Unfortunately, my plan crumbles when my trusty ol’ boss decides to swap his white coat for a Hawaiian shirt. His retirement leaves me with two terrible options: switch specialties and spend months retraining, or take an open position as Dr. Russell’s surgical assistant.

That means I have to stand near him in the OR for hours on end and anticipate his every need without letting his biting words and bad attitude intimidate me. Oh, and as if that’s not difficult enough, my silly crush on him—the one I’ve tried to stomp on until it disappears—might just be reciprocated.

It’s fine.
I’m fine.

I take my job seriously. There will be no smoldering bedroom eyes across the operating table, no angry almost-kisses in the supply closet. (Well, no more of those.)

What’s the phrase? An apple a day keeps the doctor away?
Maybe I should go for a whole damn bushel.

 

Why you should read it: Oh my goodness! This book feel into my lap at the right time! I loved EVERY minute of it! A lot of books out there are classed as romantic comedies, but not that many of them actually have much of the comedy going on. With this book I laughed and felt good, then was knocked sideways by some of the more tender and serious moments. Matt was a great hero – complete ass who terrorises his staff. But he’s brilliant – so he gets to do whatever he likes. We all know people like that, AmIRight? Then there’s Bailey. She’s brilliant too. Could have been destined for Matt’s success, but life had different ideas. Does she whine about and navel gaze? Nope, she finds satisfaction in her job and the demands of raising a teen sibling. Her outlook and her inner monologue had me laughing out loud and dying for her to take Dr. Russell down a peg or five.

The chemistry is pretty hot from the outset and boy, believe me when I say I was glued to my Kindle – slowburning romance with comedy thrown in – it ticked all of my boxes.

What you may not like: I can’t fault this book – you know I don’t hold back, but for me, this was PITCH PERFECT. I have read a few of R.S. Grey’s books and some of them have landed (IMO) and others have not – but I cannot recommend this one to you enough.

Rating: 5/5 for a fun, upbeat and really sexy read. I’ll leave you with one of my favourite quotes:

His king-sized bed has white sheets and a fluffy gray comforter. Four oversized black and white framed maps hang on one wall. There’s a plant in the corner that looks as if he waters it regularly. I half-expected him to sleep standing up, next to the power station he plugs himself into every night. The fact that he has such a warm, welcoming bedroom does weird things to my heart…

Teasing the Princess by Nana Malone

Teasing-the-Princess-web

Book: Teasing the Princess

Series: Royals United #2

Author: Nana Malone

Release date: 8 January 2019

Main characters: Roone Ainsley, best friend to the king and sent to protect Jessa McLean, the ‘lost’ princess. Jessa McLean, successful and savvy PR guru, who’s unfortunately used to having her life turned upside down.

Plot: Jessa is once again fleeing the only home she knows. This time however, she’s determined to get some answers and to find out once and for all who her enemies and who her allies are.  She won’t think about Roone and his deception – it hurts too much. She resolves to head straight into the eye of the storm – she’s heading for the Winston Isles and the source of all her trouble.

Roone knows he’s blown his chance with Jessa – but he couldn’t disobey a direct order from the king. He’s resolved to find Jessa, make her see sense and maybe one day she’ll be able to forgive him for his deception. He just has to find her first and keep her safe…

Why you should read it: if you read and enjoyed (and you should have read it first)  Royal Tease, you’ll know what a doozy of a cliffhanger it ended on. I was dying to read what would happen next – Jessa was such a badass! If you felt for Roone, then you need to read on to see what happens to him. The dialogue was punchy and the plot didn’t drag – it moved along nicely and each page was exciting and a delight. I also enjoyed the peripheral characters who appeared in the other Royals series – I love them and their realness and the multiple points of view weren’t at all jarring.

What you may not like: I’m not sure really. There was A LOT going on in the book and with so many characters involved, you may need to jog your memory a bit on past plots and character references – it wasn’t a big deal though. I thoroughly got caught up in the action and went with it! I was rewarded with an exciting and satisfying read. I totally recommend it.

Rating: 4/5 for a truly enjoyable read for the holidays – it was just what I needed.

 

Blog tour: The Kiss Thief by L.J. Shen

IMG_4637Book: The Kiss Thief

Author: L.J. Shen

Series: a standalone

Release date: 9th January 2019

Main characters: Francesca Rossi, a mob princess used as a political pawn by the men in her life. Wolfe Keaton, a senator and perhaps the devil himself. Angelo Badini, the man who hopes to make Francesca his wife.

 

Blurb:

They say your first kiss should be earned.

Mine was stolen by a devil in a masquerade mask under the black Chicago sky.

They say the vows you take on your wedding day are sacred.

Mine were broken before we left church.

They say your heart only beats for one man.

Mine split and bled for two rivals who fought for it until the bitter end.

I was promised to Angelo Bandini, the heir to one of the most powerful families in the Chicago Outfit.

Then taken by Senator Wolfe Keaton, who held my father’s sins over his head to force me into marriage.

They say that all great love stories have a happy ending.

I, Francesca Rossi, found myself erasing and rewriting mine until the very last chapter.

One kiss.
Two men.
Three lives.
Entwined together.

And somewhere between these two men, I had to find my forever.

Why you should read it: Oh my! Where to start? I’m a fairly recent fan of LJ Shen, so there’s a ton of books of hers that I’ve yet to read. I’ve read Dirty Headlines, Sparrow – which I adored, and now The Kiss Thief. The latter book reminds me in many ways of Sparrow – we have a spunky young heroine who finds herself in an impossible situation, due to the machinations of the men in her life. The lack of control over their own lives and the adversity both Sparrow and Francesca have to face, spoke to me and kept me reading. The anti-heroes of both books had similar character evolutions too – at first they’re surly, verging on sadistic, but little-by-little, they learn to let their guards down and show a more humane side towards the object of their desire.

The Kiss Thief is full of action, suspense and twisted sexual desire. You’ll either love it or hate it. The male characters in LJ’s back catalogue are not loveable rogues – they’re difficult, cruel but always redeemable.

What you may not like: It really depends on what you like a) in a romance and b) in a hero. As mentioned before, it you don’t like twisted, then you may struggle with this warped fairy tale. I found it engaging and thoroughly enjoyed it, however, there was a plot line towards the end which suddenly made Francesca, a hitherto sorted and sensible character (despite her age) act completely out of character. Her actions were stupid and seemed to have been engineered to cause drama. Despite this, I loved the story and couldn’t put the book down.

Rating: 4/5 for a truly heart-stoppingly good read. It was sexy, wrong in many ways, right in others! I would highly recommend it.

 

Buy links:

AMAZON US |AMAZON UK |AMAZON CA |AMAZON AU |AUDIO |

Right Where I Want You by Jessica Hawkins

Compliments of the season to you! I hope you had a great time whatever you did over the break – and most importantly, that it involved a good book or five!

I read this book over the holidays (which released 28 December 2018) as it’s written by a good author friend of mine – the very talented Jessica Hawkins.

Book: Right Where I Want You

Author: Jessica Hawkins

Release date: 28 December 2018

Main characters: Sebastian Quinn, hotshot Creative Director of men’s magazine The Modern Man, whose creative midas touch has turned to brass. Georgina Keller, the consultant brought in to clean up the staff’s reputation and revive the magazine’s fortunes.

BLURB
There’s a thin line between love and hate . . . and it cuts right through the middle of their office.

Bad boys? They run right over good girls like Georgina Keller.

But after a confidence-shattering breakup, she’s determined not to let anyone at her new workplace push her around—least of all the brooding creative director, a “bad boy of publishing” who’s made it clear she’s enemy #1.

Sebastian Quinn’s taste for fast cars, late nights, and beautiful women may have gotten him to the top of a leading New York magazine, but the reputation that made him is suddenly threatening to end his career.

Georgina can help Modern Man shed its bad reputation, but in order to do that, she’ll have to start at the top—and no amount of rakish charm or inconvenient attraction will distract her.

Because if Sebastian gets her right where he wants her, it means she’s going down.

Why you should read it: I will always read anything by this author – she truly is a good soul who is able to weave vivid stories that are varied, full of heart and surprises along the way. This story will be a hit with animal lovers and romance fans alike – Georgina has a lot on her plate and cares for her dog with all the care of a good mother. Her interactions with Sebastian are fraught and snappy, slowly evolving into a deeper, more intimate relationship.

Sebastian is a dude’s dude – or that’s what he’d have you believe. Deep down he’s more complex, more respectful of women and relationships than his public persona would have the public believe. He’s on thin ice professionally, and dealing with serious issues personally. How can this pair possibly work together without letting their guards down?

What you may not like: Ok – full disclosure. I struggled to get into this book. Usually, I’m hooked from the first page and dragged into the author’s world immediately. This didn’t happen with this one and I’ll explain why. Firstly, after a promising start, the focus was very much on Georgina and her dog. In fact, it felt like a love story between the heroine and her dog. Nothing wrong with that per se, but…she didn’t actually get close to the hero until I was 60% through the book! I love a slow burn but, come on!

Also, Georgina was understandably gun shy after a bad previous relationship, but it really did cast a shadow over her whole life – and she mentioned it A LOT in her internal dialogue, which began to wear on me after a while. So, all in all, I wasn’t crazy about the story – it had its moments – there were some really nice one-liners and banter between George and the staff members of the magazine, but for me – too much emphasis on being a pet owner and not enough time with the hero, alienated me a bit from the main story.

Rating: 3/5 for a gently paced tale – it’s worth a look, but for me, it didn’t set my holiday alight. I think I needed more angst and sexy times!

Sweet on the Greek by Talia Hibbert

SOTG

Book: Sweet on the Greek

Series: Just For Him #3

Author: Talia Hibbert

Main characters: Aria Granger, tattoo artist, who’s currently masquerading as wedding planner for her best friend’s wedding. Nikolas Christou, retired athlete, now trying to figure out life after football. The only thing he knows is that he wants Aria to be part of it.

Blurb:

This soccer star is determined to win… his woman’s heart.

For millionaire footballer Nikolas Christou, one look is all it takes. The minute he sees Aria Granger, he’s a goner. Playboy Nik knows lust—intimately—but his need for Aria goes far beyond that. Of course, the plus-sized beauty isn’t interested in romance… but Nik isn’t interested in giving up.

Aria Granger has sworn off relationships for her own good. After all, her ex nearly murdered her best friend, so clearly her taste is questionable. When charming, gorgeous Nik bounds into her life, Aria can’t decide if he’s as innocent as he seems… or if her bullsh*t-ometer is broken.

The super-sweet sports star claims he needs a fake girlfriend to protect him from ‘misunderstandings’. And Aria, with her tattoos, piercings and dangerous scowl, fits the bill. But there’s no way a guy as handsome as Nik can be that bad at handling relationships. Can he?

Why you should read it: Oh my! I finished this book on New Year’s Eve, and I couldn’t have picked a better read to end 2018! Talk about ending the year on a reading high note. Where to start? We have a totally dreamy hero, who, yes,  falls victim to the insta-love, but the author manages to stay the right side of crazy. He isn’t over the top and he’s not unbelievable with it either. Aria has a lot of stuff to resolve in her life, but she doesn’t let that stand in her way. Some characters have a way of sabotaging themselves, but she doesn’t. She’s cautious and wary of being hurt, but she’s brave enough to go for what she wants anyway. The chemistry between this pair is OFF THE HOOK! It was quite a slow build and man, was it sexy as all get out. I loved the dialogue and the extra peripheral characters too. They were interesting and had depth and I wanted to know more about them.

What you may not like: I have no idea – this read is getting a rare 5/5 from me, so I can’t even tell you what you might not like…

Rating: 5/5 for a well-rounded, super sexy read. You need this book…

 

Blog tour: Wrapped in Love by Lexi Ryan

Cover image  - a man and a woman standing closely in an intimate way

Book: Wrapped in Love

Series: The Boys of Jackson Harbor #4

Author: Lexi Ryan

Release date: 4 December 2018

Main characters: Molly McKinley, single mom and events planner extraordinaire; Brayden Jackson, serious eldest brother of the McKinley clan, Molly’s boss and the man he wishes she’d choose.

Plot: Molly McKinley never wanted to come back to Jackson’s Harbor – the gossip, the secrets that inevitably came out and her past all make her want to run as fast and as far as possible. But, when an irresistible job offer comes up, one that means she can provide for her son, she can hardly refuse. Plus it means she can reconnect with her mother despite what happened in the past.

Brayden Jackson has loved Molly from afar, and not so far for a long time. He knows she has issues, and a young child to think of, but he wants to be there for them both. The memory of the night they shared a while back is in no danger of dimming. He’s keen for a repeat, but Molly had drawn a line in the sand. He’s her boss, nothing more, nothing less.

A crisis situation just before Christmas sees Molly with nowhere to live and so Brayden seizes the opportunity to show her that maybe, just maybe, if she’s brave enough to choose happiness, she needed do it all alone…

Why you should read it: I have read every book in this series avidly and love the Jackson brothers. They’re pretty straightforward, which is refreshing, as the heroines really take complicated to another level. Molly has a terrible backstory – I really felt for her in the previous books when it became clear how she came to be living in New York alone. I felt for her and her demons – I really wanted for someone to suggest counselling, as she was still carrying around guilt and the past, with no signs of resolving any of it. Brayden was all you’d want in a hero: strong, patient, devoted to her despite the blockers she put in his way. Their chemistry was palpable also – it was clear to all that they felt strongly for one another, but honestly, they were so dense at times  that they couldn’t recognise it!

What you might not like: Molly is sweet, she’s kind and skittish. She’s also prone to regression now that she’s back in Jackson Harbor. Her behaviour makes sense in light of what she’s gone through, but at the same time I wanted to shake her for being so stupid! Her exasperating actions aside, there’s not a lot I disliked about the book. It was a sweet and romantic tale and I lapped it up.

Rating: 3/5 for an engaging story – a little frustrating, a lot sexy! I love my visits to Jackson Harbor.

Pre-order your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2EwksG7

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/WrappedInLoveLR

Apple Books: https://apple.co/2mgsXcq

Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/2NPfXWH

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2Ewm5Uf

Add to GoodReads link: http://bit.ly/2CTaHjJ

 

Royal Tease by Nana Malone

Book: Royal Tease

Series: Royals United #1

Author: Nana Malone

Release date: 13 November 2018

Main characters: Jessa McLean, PR guru and secret Princess. Roone Ainsley, sent to protect her by infiltrating her world.

Plot: Roone Ainsley is a trusted friend of the newly-crowned King. Who better then, to be given the mission to protect his half-sister, Jessa?

The mission is secret. Roone must get close to her, gain her trust but at no point must he reveal the truth about who he is. Simple right? Roone hates lies and when he meets Jessa and begins to enjoy her company, he likes his brief even less. How will she react when the truth comes out? And the truth must always out…
Jessa is where she wants to be professionally. She’s respected and damn good at her job. When Roone Ainsley shows up to mess with her head and her job, she has no intention of letting him jeopardise all that. The more time the pair spend together, the more confused she becomes about him – one minute he’s a thorn in her side, the next he’s her biggest advocate. Who exactly is Roone Ainsley?

Why you should read it: I really enjoy these Royal books – and I’m not usually a fan of royal-themed anything. The books are smart, the settings are vivid and the action is constant. I really liked Roone and Jessa’s characters. He’s strong and full of fun and himself – but he’s not overbearing. Jessa is stubborn stubborn stubborn – but she has good reason to dig in her heels. She’s been through a lot in life and she really doesn’t do the self-pitying thing, she just gets on with it.

The chemistry between the pair was enough to make me fan myself. It was definitely a slow but steady burn. I also loved that Nana name checked some of my favourite characters from the Chase brothers books – Abie and Alexis. I feel like I need to re-read those books now!

What you may not like: this is a duet and yes it does end on a cliffhanger. And yes – I want to know what happened right now!

Rating: 4/5 for successfully making a book set in the world of royalty realistic. There’s so much intrigue and mystery it’ll keep you turning those pages.

Her pupils dilated even as her gaze narrowed. When she spoke, her words were biting. “Since we’re on the subject, I don’t like being man-handled.” I narrowed my gaze in return. “When I man-handle you Jessa, you’ll know.” I turned and left her standing at the lift.

Blog tour: I Bet You by Ilsa Madden-Mills

0FE114F4-D4F8-49B2-A359-CC99952875DCBook: I Bet You

Author: Ilsa Madden-Mills

Series: The Hook #2

Release date: 27 October 2018

Main characters: Penelope Graham, student and tutor, who is sworn off jocks. Ryker Voss, star quarterback, bane of Penelope’s life and totally blindsided by her.

 

Blurb:

Sexy Athlete: I bet you…
Penelope Graham: Burn in hell, quarterback.

The text is random but Penelope figures out exactly who “Sexy Athlete” is. And why she shouldn’t take his wager.

Ryker Voss.
Football star.
Walks on water and God’s gift to women.
Just ask him.

His bet? He promises Penelope he’ll win her the heart of the guy she’s been crushing on. His plan—good old-fashioned jealousy. Once her crush sees her kissing Ryker, he’ll realize what he’s missing. Sounds legit, right? The only question is…why is Ryker being so nice to her?

Penelope Graham.
Virgin.
Lover of sparkly vampires and calculus.
His mortal enemy.

Penelope knows she shouldn’t trust a jock, but what’s a girl to do when she needs a date to Homecoming? And Ryker’s keeping a secret, another bet, one that could destroy Penelope’s heart forever.

Will the quarterback score the good girl or will his secrets mean everyone loses this game of love?

Why you should read it: Despite being up there in years, I do occasionally enjoy a trip back to college/university. The spirited exchanges between Ryker and Penelope made me smile and I liked Penelope’s outlook on life. She was part of the sorority scene, but she was also her own person. It seemed strange that such an independent character would want to be part of that world, but I liked that Penelope didn’t allow herself to be pigeonholed as one thing or another. Her attraction to Ryker was achingly familiar – liking someone you really don’t want to, and it kept me reading. Ryker’s not your average jock either. He has a brain and a degree of free thinking. He is plagued by team politics and male bravado, and is doing his best to avoid the suffocating aspects of being part of a football team. His interest in Penelope rang true and their interactions were pretty hot – he’s struggling with his feelings and doesn’t want to mess up an important year for himself. Penelope doesn’t want to be hurt and tries in vain to withstand his charms.

What you might not like: This is a pretty traditional college story – at first it reminded me of an 80s teen movie – boy likes girl, boy blows it by entering into a stupid bet and girl is destroyed. I was pleasantly surprised however. Ryker is more evolved than his 80s counterparts and isn’t a douchebag. He has his own values and stays true to them. On the whole, it was a cute read, that was sexy and sweet, where all is right with the world in the end.

Rating: 3/5 for an enjoyable read – not too high on the drama, sweet enough to give you toothache near the end. Worth a read.

Blog tour: One Week Hating You by Roya Carmen

IMG_5341Book: One Week Hating You

Series: One Week #2

Author: Roya Carmen

Release date: 25 October 2018

Main characters: Maeve Gallagher, Blake Taylor, childhood friend and frenemy. Peter Walker, Maeve’s former fiancé.

Blurb:

Maeve is over the moon: life is good and she’s about to get married to Peter.  But when she loses her job and gets jilted at the altar, her world crumbles and she runs into her momma’s arms.

She’s back in her small hometown for a week, and she has a plan – make Peter insanely jealous and win him back.  Enter Blake Taylor, the boy who broke her heart.  She’d rather avoid him at all costs, but with his ‘bad boy’ good looks and their shared history, Blake is the perfect man for the job, as long as she can stand him long enough – it’s just one week, after all.

She’ll show Peter that she’s not the sweet wallflower he thinks she is, and he’ll come running back soon enough.

But when he does, will she still want him?

Why you should read it: I loved One Week so much, so when I heard there would be a sequel, I was beside myself. The end of book one ended on a cliffhanger, and I really wanted to know how Maeve was going to cope with being left at the altar. The action picks up pretty much from where book 1 left off, and I felt a lot of empathy for Maeve. She’s left questioning an awful lot about her life. She’s essentially homeless, jobless and fiancé-less. Life is coming at her from all sides. She returns home and I enjoyed getting to know her family and see where she came from. Her relationship with Blake was pretty antagonistic, and I really didn’t see how they were ever going to get along.

What you may not like: While I empathised with Maeve, I felt that she was altogether too lenient on Peter and what he did to her. I wondered at her lack of self-preservation, if nothing else. Yes, she’d invested a lot of years in her relationship, but come on! Love yourself! Maeve’s relationship with Blake was also a head-scratcher. It was turbulent; most of the time, the pair seemed to just want to hurt each other. Blake was really unsympathetic to what had just happened to Maeve, but for the most part, Maeve just retaliated or brushed it off. I have to admit that the burgeoning relationship and back and forth didn’t really work for me. they both came off as immature – which is realistic, when you return to your family home. You tend to regress, but there’s teasing and then there’s just being downright mean. It wasn’t until Blake finally started to open up that I could see a way clear for them and he became a fully-formed character. The chemistry rang true, but  I wasn’t 100% convinced they brought the best out in each other…

Rating: 3/5 for an entertaining, but slightly problematic read. I like flawed heroes and heroines, but I guess I don’t like cruel ones. It didn’t work for me but there was plenty in it to make me smile.

One Week Hating You TOUR Banner

So Wild by Eve Dangerfield

cover picBook: So Wild

Series: Silver Daughters Ink #1

Author: Eve Dangerfield

Release date: 23 October 2018

Main characters: Samantha DaSilva, pranker supreme, tattoo artist, Johnny Depp hater. Scott Sanderson, her childhood neighbour, former nemesis, and owner of the longest crush in history.

Plot: Sam DaSilva has been left with a ton of responsibilities she didn’t  necessary want when her father decides to take off to give his daughters ‘room to grow’.  Left with a tattoo business that’s circling the drain, a fractured family she needs to somehow reunite, the odds are stacked against her.

Life becomes even more complicated when she bumps into Scott Sanderson. The unhappy boy who lived next door to her years ago, and with whom she had a complicated, love-hate situation going on. Scott’s sudden appearance brings back all sorts of memories, both happy and sad. Whatever was between them 10 years ago is not about to go away overnight, so they better figure out what it all means. If ever they can put their adolescent heartbreaks behind them, can they move forward with a clean slate?

Why you should read it: Wow! I was so excited to read this book – I love this author for her narratives, her complex characters and the kink factor of her books. This one featured spanking – sign me up! It was a no-brainer to read! I was not disappointed either. I got a heart-warming tale featuring references to my favourite 90s shows, a mutual hatred for Johnny Depp, and my favourite books growing up. (Sweet Valley High and the Babysitters Club, anyone?)

The relationship between Scott and Sam was tempestuous without being too over the top. Sure, Sam is not a fully formed adult – not by a long shot, but nor does she pretend to be. She’s a bit of a mess, but she grows throughout the story. Scott was patient, posh and… can’t think of another word starting with ‘p’, but he was adorable. I was rooting for them so much, and I love how they were from completely different worlds but somehow managed to find common ground.

What you may not like: I lapped this book up because it was funny as hell, sexy in a slow-burning kind of way and full of heart.  The writing was strong and made me laugh out loud several times. I think the British and Australian senses of humour are quite similar and I really did love this book! If I have to think of a negative… maybe there could have been more spanking. I’ll always want more spanking in a book. But I digress…

Rating: 4/5 for a fun, sexy and smart story. Now I don’t regret fangirling shamelessly to the author and requesting (read begging) in order to read this story. Check it out!