Excerpt, Giveaways, Reviews

#Review of Love.Local.Latebreaking (Book 1 in the Newsroom Romance series) by H. Laurence Lareau w/a rafflecopter giveaway! #contemporaryromance

Love. Local. Latebreaking.

by H. Laurence Lareau

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GENRE: Contemporary romance

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BLURB:

Professional passion in the tradition of Julie James, Love. Local. Latebreaking. is a page-turning romance shining a spotlight into television news.

“Heart-tugging relational tension but with a sophistication that raises it above the romance genre.” — Jlaird, verified purchaser

“Mr. Lareau manages humor beautifully–I was able to envision certain scenes/situations/people so clearly that I was chortling into my coffee. I highly recommend this novel as a light-hearted (and sexy) diversion.” — Sarah K. Clark, verified purchaser

“The heroine had a career that she worked hard for and that she didn’t give that career up simply because she’d found love” — A. Geek, verified purchaser

Local TV news reporter Karli Lewis has one goal: escape Iowa’s cornfields and podunk local news scene to hit the bright lights of the Chicago’s newsrooms. Karli’s career is on the rise, thanks to her talented, dizzingly handsome, yet enigmatic news photographer, Jake Gibson, a dedicated hometown boy who is staying put. Will Karli listen to her heart, or will she choose a dateline over her favorite date? Can she reconcile her unbridled ambition and her longing for the man she could lose forever?

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Excerpt Three:

Jake took the little wallet with the receipt and his credit card sticking out of it from Robert, wrote in a tip, signed, and set it on the table. “Karli, I haven’t said a thing about how you should live your life. I have congratulated you and wished you the best,” he said. “You’re right that I have other ideas, but I have never said anything about how I think you should live your life. If you’re feeling guilty, it’s not because I’ve laid that on you.”

“Oh, so this is all my doing, then, is it?” Karli responded angrily. “If I’m feeling guilty, it’s my own fault, right, and I should feel guilty about that, too, right?”

“That’s not what I said, either.”

“No, of course not,” Karli’s fury rolled on. “You’re just the latest man who wants to control me.”

Jake rose from the table and turned to leave. He went about two steps, paused, turned, and found Karli’s eyes. “No, Karli. I’m not trying to control you. I’m trying to tell you that I love you. And that I love you enough to let you find your own way.”

He began turning to leave, stopped, then reached into his pocket and turned back to Karli. “Here. I guess it’s my turn, now that you’re all finished,” he said, opening the box and handing it to her. He watched her pull out the elaborate platinum charm bracelet with an appreciative gasp.

As she minutely examined each custom-made charm—a covered bridge, a tiny ram with prominent testicles, a miniature microphone, a camera, a little bulletproof vest, a bicycle, a tiny Three NewsFirst logo, and the initials J.G.—he turned and moved silently to leave the restaurant and Karli.

I’m just going to say that this is one of the most intelligent books that I’ve read in a long time.  Sure, I read a lot of romance and most of them I love but when most follow the formula for a romance novel, Mr. Lareau didn’t.  He wrote an intelligent romance about an intelligent woman that has her career life planned out but not her personal life at all.  She never factored in love and friendships.  Just the career.

I fell in love with Karli from the start.  I could empathize with her when it came to her dad and her need to not be controlled by a man anymore.  Plus, she was so smart, maybe too smart for her own good.  I loved how she formed true female relationships with Bailey and Mary Rose.  They both were great secondary characters that really shined.  Mary Rose cracked me up and Bailey was always the voice of reason.  Plus, even with Karli’s ambition at times clouding her better judgment, these two were great friends for her to have and Karli never took them for granted.

Jake, oh my, Jake.  You knew, right?  He had me at hello.  He cries.  He cares and above all, he loves Karli, warts and all.  If you read the last line of the excerpt, it explains all the special moments that Jake made with Karli.  *sigh* and *major swoon*  But I also liked how, Mr. Lareau, wrote him out fo the book for a bit.  That’s where the intelligent part of the book really got me.  Karli didn’t NEED Jake to make her complete, she had to figure out that she truly did WANT him in her life.  Again, most authors don’t take that gamble but it paid off in spades for me at least.

What was really neat was learning the ins and outs of a television studio and how it runs.  I totally understood about the death and I don’t know if I would have handled any better than Karli and Jake.  Plus, there is karate.

Jake and Karli are one of my all time favorite couples.  Seriously.  The best and I can’t wait to read Bailey’s story and plus, to find out about Mary Rose and the sportscaster.

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

 

  1. Laurence Lareau fell in love with romances the first time Pride and Prejudice came home from the library with him. Since that high school summer, he has earned an English degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, worked as a television and print journalist, built a career in law, and has remained a Jane Austen junkie through it all.

The Newsroom Romance series draws from his careers, his voracious reading, and his curiosity about the tensions between real life and real love.

Real life now is dramatically different from the real life of Austen’s times—privileged women no longer choose between eligible members of the landed gentry, nor are they imperiled by the sexist mysteries of the entailed fee simple estate in land.

Modern women with the privileges of education rather than birth now embark upon careers that can satisfy many personal and material dreams. Seemingly inevitably, though, careers fall short of the promise that they’ll fulfill women as people.

Strong, modern women have defined Lareau’s professional and personal lives, and strong women fully occupy center stage in their own newsroom romance stories. Their high-profile journalism and legal careers matter deeply to them and to the people they serve.

Then love comes walking in. These book boyfriends don’t have kilts or billions or pirate ships, though. Their career goals meet and often clash with their romantic counterparts, requiring both the men and women to make hard choices about what happily ever after should look like and how to achieve it.

When he isn’t writing, practicing law, or raising children, he’s working on martial arts and music.

Available on Amazon at: https://www.amazon.com/author/hlaurencelareau

Website: hlaurencelareau.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HLLareau/

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

Laurence Lareau will be awarding a $15 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Giveaways, Harlequin Spotlight, Meme, Reviews

#Review of Her Lost and Found Baby by Tara Taylor Quinn w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @tarataylorquinn @HarlequinBooks @PrismBookTours


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Her Lost and Found Baby
By Tara Taylor Quinn
Contemporary Romantic Suspense
Paperback & ebook, 224 Pages
August 1st 2018 by Harlequin Special Edition

Friends. Without benefits. They both agreed.

Until she stole his heart.

Tabitha Jones will find her kidnapped toddler…even if it means searching every daycare in Southern California. So when her hunky, wealthy neighbor, Johnny Brubaker, offers a deal, Tabitha sees it as an ideal way to expand her search. In exchange for working his food truck, Johnny agrees to pose as Tabitha’s husband. It’s the perfect relationship…until Johnny realizes posing as a family man isn’t enough anymore.

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When it was announced that Harlequin was discontinuing the Superromance line, I was bereft, to say the least.  I’ve been reading that line for over 2 decades.  Plus, the authors that I have found to read and continue to read.  I knew where some of the authors were going in terms of the other lines that Harlequin has but I was a little concerned about Ms. Quinn’s placement in the Harlequin universe.  Well, I can wonder no more.  But I’ll be honest, I don’t read this line.  And I say that I’m a Harlequin reader.  Psst…It’s just one of those lines that I never got into.  Don’t judge.

Well, Ms. Quinn has outdone herself with this one.  I literally read this one in one sitting and I NEVER do that.  This story is engrossing from the start.  I felt the anguish from Tabitha and the helplessness that Johnny felt trying to help her.  We jump right in from the first page and the pacing never slows up.  But I did have one tiny problem with the book.  I know and I’m sorry.  But I didn’t feel like Tabitha and Johnny talked to each other enough.  Sure they danced around their attraction to each other and I really liked that.  Johnny’s reasons for NOT wanting a sexual relationship with her made complete sense and trust me, Tabitha’s was a doozy.  When she finally decided enough was enough, I cheered.  Someone had to take the bull by the horns and I was excited that it was Tabitha.  And yes, the door is partially open in Special Edition so don’t be surprised.

The suspense element was great.  Not too heavy but relevant to the kidnapping.  I loved how Ms. Quinn involved the daycare owners.  I wasn’t too sure about them but…you just need to read it.  I know that earlier I said that I didn’t feel like they talked enough, their character growth is fantastic.  The word passion is used a lot by Johnny and I will NOT spoil it for you but when he finally decides what he wants, it’s priceless.  The talks with his parents are well written and further is the decision.  I felt like he had the most to grow in the book and in the end, he did.  *swoon*

I know that its gonna take some getting used to reading this line but overall, Ms. Quinn has written a winner.  And now, I can breathe a sigh of relief.

 

About the Author

The author of more than 70 original novels, in twenty languages, Tara Taylor Quinn is a USA Today bestseller with over six million copies sold. A 2015 RITA finalist Tara appears frequently on bestseller lists, including #1 placement on Amazon lists, and multiple showings on the Publisher’s Weekly Bestseller list. She has appeared on national and local TV across the country, including CBS Sunday Morning.

Tara is a supporter of the National Domestic Violence Hotline. If you or someone you know might be a victim of domestic violence in the United States, please contact 1-800-799-7233.

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Tour Schedule

July 30th:
Launch
Andi’s Book Reviews
By Her Shelf
July 31st:
Inside The Mind of An Avid Reader
Book by Book
Wishful Endings
August 1st:
Jorie Loves A Story
Becky on Books
August 2nd:
My Devotional Thoughts
Rockin’ Book Reviews
Harlie’s Books
August 3rd:
Thoughts of a Blonde
Busy Bumble Bee Book Reviews
Aubrey & Co.
August 4th:
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Excerpt, Giveaways, Harlequin Spotlight, Meme, New Release, Reviews, Teaser Excerpts

#Review of The Forbidden Brother (The McNeill Magnates #7) by Joanne Rock w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @givemebooksblog @JoanneRock6

 

 

Title: The Forbidden Brother
Series: The McNeill Magnates #7
Author: Joanne Rock
Publisher: Harlequin Desire
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: July 1, 2018

 

Blurb
A night of passion and mistaken identity means unmistakable consequences…
Jillian Ross craves adventure. And she gets it when her new career as a movie location scout leads her to the ranch owned by the wealthy Wyoming McNeills. A close encounter with the playboy McNeill causes havoc—since it’s actually his reclusive twin, Cody, she’s fallen for! Now she’s pregnant—and still can’t get enough of her reluctant rancher. Is this adventure just beginning?
Purchase Links
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
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Excerpt
“You’ve improved my Saturday night a whole lot, too.” He liked the feel of her, his hand warming the cool skin through the thin blouse she wore. “It’s been a long time since I’ve thought about anything outside of work.”
Her eyebrows lifted. “Leading me to wonder what you could be thinking about right now.” Her lips curved. “Admiring the Wrangler’s decor? Or maybe remembering how much you like a good George Jones tune?” 
He laughed appreciatively. “I do respect a bar that still plays a classic. But the vinyl upholstery in the booths isn’t doing much for me in the decor department.” His gaze skated over her features; he was looking forward to making her blush again. “And I was thinking about you more than anything else.”
His directness might have caught her off guard. She nibbled her lower lip briefly before meeting his eyes. “I haven’t been the center of anyone’s attention in…a long time.”
There was a story there. He heard it in her voice. Saw it in her eyes.
“You aren’t involved with someone else?” He needed to be sure before he let this go on any longer. But his pulse was already thrumming.

“I don’t see a ring, but I have to ask.”
“I am very much unattached.” She shook her head, red curls catching the overhead light as she moved. “What about you? No one waiting at home?”
“The only ones who might be missing my presence right now are a couple of rowdy shepherds back at my ranch who would have preferred the night off.” He swayed with her. Her knee brushed his now and again in a way that fired right through him. “But no girlfriend. No wife.”
He respected that she asked, even though she was clearly feeling the same spark as him. And now that those formalities had been cleared away, he could simply enjoy the moment. The completely unexpected pleasure of having a beautiful stranger in his arms. He didn’t want to let go of her now. He wanted to take her outside into the fresh, rain-cleaned night and kiss her. See if she tasted as good as he imagined.
“The stars are aligning for us so far, aren’t they?” She peered up at him with something like wonder in her eyes. He couldn’t remember a woman ever looking at him quite like
that. As if he was the answer to a question. An answer that pleased her. 
“It feels that way.” He didn’t want to scare her off with empty pickup lines, or come across as some lowlife playing games with a woman in a bar. But as the music shifted again—this time to an even slower, modern country love song—Cody wondered if he could convince her to let the spark between them run wild. To follow the heat wherever it led.
“And since the stars aligning would be a first for me, I wonder if can ask you just one thing.” 
He halted them in the middle of the floor, now that the two-step was done. Bringing her fractionally closer, he swayed to the slower tempo in a barely moving lovers’ dance.
She followed him seamlessly, her gaze never straying from his. She was fully focused on him. Framed by dusky brown lashes, those green-gold eyes reminded him of new grass and spring.
“Sure. Ask away.” Her voice had a sweet-sultry quality that made him want to listen to her speak more. 
“Don’t you ever wish you could forget about the expectations of the world around you and just…choose your own adventure?” He remembered books like that when he’d been a kid, where you could test out different endings to a story. For someone who’d always taken the safe route in real life, he had liked the option of seeing how another choice played out. At least in a book. Cody couldn’t do that with ranching. Or his family. But he could take a chance here. Tonight.
Her lashes swept down for a long moment, hiding her expression. But when she tilted a glance up at him again, there was a new curiosity there.
“Are you asking to share an adventure with me?” She sounded disbelieving. But maybe a little intrigued.
“I suppose I am.” He would never have made such an outrageous suggestion to a local—a woman who knew him or his family. But she had “tourist” and “temporary” written all over her. Surely there couldn’t be any harm in drawing out the flirtation? “What would you say to throwing away the rule book for a little longer?”
He let go of her hand for a moment to tip her chin higher, to see her face in the dim overhead light of the dance floor. Feminine interest flickered in her eyes. He inhaled as she released a pent-up breath. He could almost taste her in the space of silence between them. Then he leaned closer to press his cause. “Choose me tonight.”

Oh, I love this series.  Now we are dealing with the Wyoming side of things and I will admit, I miss my other boys.  But I digress.   This side is going to be a doozy for sure.  Between Scarlett, the youngest and my absolute favorite so far, their mom and her secret, the dad being so obstinate and the other twin brother, this one is going to be awesome.

Jillian is one of my favorite female characters that Ms. Rock has written to date.  A survivor but doesn’t play the victim, she is going after her own life on her terms.  Being a location scout affords her the luxury of traveling and having her adventures.  Plus, she just has that spunk that I just love.  She went after a McNeill, okay the “wrong” one but it turned out fine, right?  Pregnant by one of them?  That should have made her happy but considering what her health issue is/was, Ms. Rock handles it very, very well.  And that’s all I’m going to say about that.

Cody in a sense reminds me of Gabe.  I know, I shouldn’t compare but being the “quiet” one, he doesn’t trust people like his siblings.  And don’t even mention the other branch of the family tree.  That’s like treason for his siblings to embrace their grandfather.  I was happy to see him and Rosa back for a bit.  He really is trying.  Cody’s being just brought a smile to face throughout the whole book.  He’s loyal, the quiet observer but fiercely protective of the people that he loves…including Jillian.

I loved how Cody and Jillian’s relationship had all an equal amount of push and pull.  Ms. Rock treats them as equals and it shows.  Cody isn’t over the top when it comes to Jillian and knows when to back off.  Jillian, on the other hand, lets him know how she feels and what she wants to do with her life and the pregnancy.  They talked and acted like adults.  🙂

Overall, this is another winner in the McNeill’s saga.  Oh and Scarlett…I just can’t.  I have no words.  She is a hoot and I have the strangest feeling that she is going to get herself into a situation that even SHE can’t talk her way out of.  😉

 

Author Bio
Four-time RITA nominee Joanne Rock has never met a romance sub-genre she didn’t like. The author of over eighty books enjoys writing a wide range of stories, most recently focusing on sexy contemporaries and small town family sagas. An optimist by nature and perpetual seeker of silver linings, Joanne finds romance fits her life outlook perfectly–love is worth fighting for. A frequent speaker at regional and national writing conferences she enjoys giving back to the writing community that nurtured and inspired her early career.
She has a Masters degree in Literature from the University of Louisville but credits her fiction writing skills to her intensive study with friend and fellow author Catherine Mann. When she’s not writing, Joanne enjoys travel, especially to see her favorite sports teams play with her former sports editor husband and three athletic-minded sons.
 
Author Links