Excerpt, Giveaways, Reviews, TWRP

#Review of One Unforgettable Friday by Robena Grant w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @RobenaGrant

One Unforgettable Friday

by Robena Grant

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GENRE: Contemporary Romance

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BLURB:

Lizzie York, a young paraplegic, has the chance to teach at a new school in Oldcastle. On a quest for independence, and to live alone, out from her brother’s watchful eye, she encounters discrimination from narrow-minded villagers. Toss into the mix: a school employee who sets her heart racing, a home of her own, and work she is passionate about.

Peter Barrington, a London solicitor, invests in Bright Academy. Having experienced pain and loss in his past, he became a workaholic. He now desires a quiet life in the country. He meets Lizzie, is immediately smitten, but respects her need for independence. As they work together, their mutual respect and love grows.

When someone hides in the woods and photographs them, Peter does everything in his power to protect Lizzie. But Lizzie is up for a fight. Will their love be strong enough to overcome hatred, and intent to harm, so they can forge a future together?

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Excerpt One:

“I do apologize for the interruption, ladies.” He smiled at Lina. “I need a document signed. From the county. This should be the last. And I have a couple of things to go over with you.”

“Okay,” Lina said, chewing at the sweet in her mouth and swallowing. “No problem.”

Lizzie tried hard to ignore the handsome man who caused her stomach to flutter and her heart to pound. His deep baritone voice, smooth as honey, trickled to places it had no business. She cleared her throat and resisted the urge to clap her hands. “We need to get started.” The women had no clue how much work was involved. She took a quick peek at Peter. He and Lina could attend to business, but this project had to start right away. “In front of you is a stack of yellow netting, a pair of pinking shears, green ribbon and…wait for it, a dish of boiled sweets.”

In three long strides, Peter crossed the room and stood beside her. He wasn’t an overly tall man, his body wiry but muscular. He picked up a piece of the netting and rubbed it between long, tapered fingers, then glanced about at the ribbons and sweets, his gaze turning thoughtful. “This is amazing. The place looks like a factory. I might need photos.” He fished out his phone.

“No. No pictures, please.” Lina swatted his arm. Lizzie doubted she’d ever think a wise thought again as she inhaled the man’s delicious scent: clean linen and citrus mixed with something spicy. She swallowed hard, overcome by his nearness. The way the room lacked air. The way his long, elegant fingers, lightly held the netting.

This is such a sweet romance and story.  I adored it but let me back up for a minute.  Lizzie is in a wheelchair.  There I said it.  So what is romantic about that?  Plenty and I’ll tell you why.  One of my cousins has severe Cerebral Palsy.  Born with it actually.  He has an older brother and sister, too.  We were told not to ever treat Samuel any differently than another other kid, so we didn’t.  He grew up to be smarter than his siblings.  Was mainstreamed in both public school and college.  Graduated from Illinois University and ended up married to his caregiver.  They had children (yes, the old-fashioned way) but sadly divorced.  He never missed a beat in the way that approached his life and how he lived it.  And yes, he is still alive and living with his parents.

So when I decided to read Lizzie and Peter’s story, I came into with my eyes wide open to her situation.  I didn’t read the other two stories in the series so I didn’t know the set up beforehand.  I’m so glad that I didn’t read them because I really at times wanted to slap her brother for his obsession with her.  Overprotective much?  It bothered me because of the way that I always treated my cousin.  Without kid gloves.  Just because he is in a wheelchair doesn’t mean that he doesn’t have a functioning brain cell and that he uses it.  Grrr.  Moving on…

I really liked Lizzie’s feisty personality.  I understood her and cheered for her.  Peter is the perfect partner for her.  Notice I didn’t say, hero.  She didn’t need one.  She needed a partner and she got that with him.  Of course, he overstepped in bounds but in the end, when it really counted with Roberta, he was there.  The creepiness of the photos and the hatred that came with Lizzie trying to go back to teaching.  Small towns can be so small minded but Ms. Grant wrote it in a way that not everyone is like that.

So you may be asking if there are smexy times in the book?  Well, I don’t do spoilers so you will have to find out for yourself.  *wink*  Lizzie wasn’t about to let that chair define her as a person and not everyone was on board with it.  Ms. Grant handled that aspect of the book marvelously.  It takes a while for some people to come around and then again, some just don’t.  I never saw Lizzie in the chair.  I saw her has a person that wants and needs just like everyone else.  Peter saw that, too and I adore that about him.  Plus, come on?  Dev Patel lookalike?  Yep, I’m in.  *swoon*

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

 

Robena Grant writes contemporary romance and romantic suspense about ordinary women thrust into extraordinary circumstances. Travel and discovering new places brings her great pleasure, and she often includes these discoveries in her stories. She is Australian by birth, lives in Southern California, and has two grown children. Robena may be contacted at: www.robenagrant.com where she blogs frequently, or follow her on social media https://twitter.com/RobenaGrant https://www.facebook.com/robenagrantauthor

 

https://www.amazon.com/Unforgettable-Friday-English-Village-Book-ebook/dp/B076Z4D56Y

https://www.amazon.com/Robena-Grant/e/B00B60DEE2

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

Robena Grant will be awarding a $20 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Giveaways, New Release, Release Day, Reviews

Happy Book Birthday & #ARC Review of Approaching the Bench (a Conflict of Interest novel #3) by Chantal Fernando! @chantal.fernando.author @ChantalFernando

 

Title: Approaching the Bench
Series: The Conflict of Interest Series #3
Author: Chantal Fernando
Publisher: Pocket Star
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: February 19, 2018
Blurb
A tenacious, resilient female judge must find a way to work with her carefree clerk as they find themselves in danger when a fugitive sets his sights on revenge in the third book in New York Times bestselling author Chantal Fernando’s sexy and thrilling Conflict of Interest Series.Trinity Williams, known as “Medusa” for her stony expressions and unyielding reputation, constantly has her guard up—how else is the youngest female judge in the country supposed to survive in such a male-dominated profession? She made the decision long ago that laughter and a carefree attitude have no business in a courtroom and achieving her professional goals is the only thing
she has left. It’s just her luck that her new law clerk, Callum Hopkins, believes the exact opposite.Callum Hopkins thinks that nothing should ever be too serious in life—why can’t he mix business with pleasure? When he first starts working for his hot new boss, they clash at every turn. He makes it his mission to get Judge Williams to see things his way for once.But when Callum finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time as an escaped convict comes after Trinity, he realizes it’s not all fun and games anymore. Now in witness protection together until the authorities can catch the fugitive, this unlikely pair must learn to trust one another and work together to stay alive. Far away from the courtroom, Trinity and Callum are suddenly free to stop butting heads, and stop fighting the growing attraction between them.

With suspense and plenty of chemistry, Approaching the Bench proves once again that “Chantal Fernando knows how to draw you in and keep you hooked” (Booklist).

I know.  Isn’t the cover awesome?  The blurb intriguing?  Or maybe just because I read the other two books in the series that I couldn’t resist?  The latter would be the answer.  Plus, I just love Ms. Fernando’s writing style.  Plus, her lawyers couldn’t be sexier.  What really drew me to this one is Trinny.  I just had to read her story and understand why she was the way she is.   Plus, I knew that Callum would be a fun hero.  I wasn’t wrong in my assessment of Callum but he had a surprising depth to him.  Trinny.  I just loved her and I got her.
Let me explain.  I worked for years in a very male-dominated world and had to prove myself over and over again the powers to be that I was good at my job and worthy.  I worked my tail off and when it was all said and done, I was lonely.  Just like Trinny.  No boyfriend, no real relationships except my family.  That’s when my now husband walked into my life and I realized that my work shouldn’t define who I was but my relationship with him would.  I was in my 30’s when it happened, just like Trinny.  Why yes, there is an age difference, with Trinny being the elder.  I loved that aspect of their relationship.  Callum opened her up and Trinny reminded him of the seriousness of what will happen in the aftermath.
The mystery/suspense element is good.  Not heavyhanded even though I figured it out fairly early but I was stunned at the end with the accomplice.  I didn’t expect that and it had just another layer to Trinny and who she was and what she has become as a person.  Bravo, Ms. Fernando.  Bravo.  While the book is a bit shorter than Seducing the Defendant, Ms. Bravo fleshed out a marvelous story about two people that were drawn to each other and put in an awful situation and found love in the end.
Callum’s brother Justin, father and his friend Eddie were excellent secondary characters.  If I had one thing to complain about is that I missed the other characters from the other two books.  Hunter’s book is next and I can.not.wait.!  Do yourself a favor and pick up this series.  You will not regret it.

 

Purchase Links
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Also Available

 

 

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
B&N / KOBO / iBOOKS

 

Coming Soon

Releasing April 17, 2018

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
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Author Bio

New York Times, Amazon & USA Today Bestselling Author Chantal Fernando is thirty years old and lives in Western Australia.Lover of all things romance, Chantal is the author of the best selling books Dragon’s Lair, Maybe This Time and many more.

When not reading, writing or daydreaming she can be found enjoying life with her three sons and family.

Chantal loves to hear from readers.

 

Author Links
Excerpt, Giveaways, Spotlight

Author Spotlight featuring David Pereda’s Havana Blue w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @DavidPeredaAVL #HistoricalFiction

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. David Pereda will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

The year is 1952 and Ramon Rodriguez’s life as a teenager in fun-loving Havana is filled with typical activities and concerns: girls, education, religion, baseball, parties, and hanging out with friends. The country is enjoying a period of prosperity and happiness–until General Batista stages a coup that topples the government and Ramon’s life is flung into chaos.

In a few short years, the carefree fifties morph into a vicious and repressive dictatorship highlighted by corruption, organized gambling, school closures, student demonstrations, police brutality, and assassinations.

As Ramon experiences the thrills of his first romantic relationship, graduates from school, and struggles to plan for an uncertain future, he is forced to make important decisions that may be dangerous to him, his family, his friends, and his girlfriend – the beautiful Sonia — and could turn deadly.

Enjoy an Excerpt

Black Face chomped on his cigar, eyeing Pepe with deliberation. He was big and muscular and mean-looking. Pepe looked frail next to him. ‘Go home, muchacho.’ He finally said. ‘Now. Before you get in trouble.’

‘Is the president really dead?’ I asked. ‘Is it true?’

The fat policeman laughed in my face. He had rotten teeth and bad breath too. He winked at Black Face. ‘Hey, Valdez, did you hear that? This boy wants to know if the president’s dead. How do you like that?’

The black policeman laughed too, as if what Puffy Face had said was the funniest thing in the world, his burly body shaking all over. He coughed, and tears came to his eyes.

‘Is he dead?’ Pepe asked.

The two policemen laughed some more, but not so hard.

Their laughter was running out of steam. Maybe they were getting tired. I realized, suddenly, how scared I really was of them – my heart was pounding hard and my breath was coming in shallow little gasps. It was time to leave. Who cared if the president was dead or not, anyway? We could find that out later.

‘Is he dead?’ Pepe asked again.

‘You sure ask a lot of questions,’ Puffy Face replied with annoyance. ‘No, he ain’t, cabron. Bastard ran away. Scared.’

‘Cabron yourself,’ Pepe said under his breath. ‘Fat ass!’

‘What was that you said?’ Perez scowled at Pepe.

‘Nada, Señor Policia. Nothing!’ Hermes said, walking rapidly toward the other side of the street. ‘He didn’t say nothing.’

Perez watched us with his frog eyes as Joaquin and I struggled to take Pepe away. Black Face chewed on his cigar stump.

‘What these little bastards need is work,’ Perez said. ‘Trabajo.’

‘Trabajo, si.’ Valdez took the cigar out of his mouth and spat again. ‘Put them to work in the sun ten hours a day with a pick and a shovel. That’s what they need. I guarantee you they won’t be so sassy then.’

‘Si,’ Perez said. ‘That’s what they need.’ He laughed. ‘And palos. Una buena partida de palos. Beat the shit out of them with a stick.’

As if to emphasize his words, Perez hit the façade of the school building hard with the butt of his machine gun. ‘And here’s where they learn all that mierda. Right here!’ He banged the wall again. ‘From the curas and their goddamned Catholic schools.’

‘That’s the problem with Cuba, the goddamned curas,’ Valdez said. ‘Fucking priests stick their noses into everything. All they do is create trouble. Look at these kids, asking questions. No respect for authority. Wanting to know who’s the new president.’

‘Si, what the fuck do they care who’s the new president? That’s the fault of the curas,’ Perez said, adding so softly I had to strain to hear him as we rambled away, ‘School and curas. Never liked them and never will.’

Unexpectedly, Black Face screamed something at us. The jumbled words reached my ears with the force of a slapping wind as we hurried down the street. For a moment, I couldn’t comprehend what he was saying and then, finally, I did.

‘It’s Batista, cabrones. You hear me? Batista! That’s the name of your new president. And he’s black too. Like me.’

About the Author:

David Pereda was born in Havana, Cuba. The award-winning author of seven previous novels, he enjoys crafting political thrillers and edgy mainstream novels with unique characters placed in exotic settings. He has traveled to more than thirty countries and speaks four languages. Before devoting his time solely to writing and teaching, David had a successful international consulting career with global giant Booz Allen Hamilton, where he worked with the governments of Mexico, Venezuela, Peru and Qatar, among others.

A member of MENSA, David earned his MBA from Pepperdine University in California. He earned bachelor degrees in English literature and mathematics at the University of South Florida in Tampa.

He lives in artistic Asheville, North Carolina, with his youngest daughter Sophia, where he teaches mathematics and English at the Asheville-Buncombe Community College. He loves sports and is an accomplished competitor in track and show-jumping equestrian events.

http://davidpereda.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/David-Pereda-Writer/345490998614

https://twitter.com/DavidPeredaAVL

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Havana-Blues-David-Pereda-ebook/dp/B078KLQNL9

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/havana-blues-david-pereda/1127421804

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