Release Day, Reviews

Happy Release Day to Seducing the Defendant (the Conflict of Interest series #2) by Chantal Fernando @givemebooksblog @ChantalFernando

 

 

Title: Seducing the Defendant
Series: The Conflict of Interest Series #2
Author: Chantal Fernando
Publisher: Gallery
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 14, 2017
Blurb

New York Times bestselling author Chantal Fernando returns to her latest, steamy Conflict of Interest series with this electrifying tale of murder, justice, and intense attraction.Jaxon Bentley is a hardnosed criminal lawyer whose entire life revolves around his work. He’s been asked to represent Scarlett Reyes, a woman accused of murdering her police officer husband in cold blood. All the evidence points to Scarlett being guilty and Jaxon is sure it’s an open and shut case.

But when he meets his client, he can’t help but feel that she’s innocent and that there’s more to the story than meets the eye. With a bit of digging, he uncovers a connection to the notorious Wind Dragons Motorcycle Club and realizes that Scarlett’s case is a complicated and difficult one. It certainly doesn’t help that the two share an immediate and passionate attraction. Will Jaxon be able to prove Scarlett’s innocence or are the two doomed to fail both in court and as a couple?

 

Purchase Links
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

 

I know what you are going to say?  Or maybe not.  I just love Ms. Fernando’s writing.  Keep in mind that this is only my 2nd book to read by her and yes, it’s one of the best books of 2017.  There is something to be said about an author that grabs your attention and doesn’t let it go.  I will admit that I read some of the reviews of this book that have come across my computer through other blogs and not a lot of them liked it as much as I did.  Here’s why:
1.  Insta love – I didn’t feel like Scarlett and Jaxson had the whole insta love thing going.  In fact, I felt like Scarlett held back until about 3/4 of the way in the book.  Sure, they had sex, a lot and went out on dates but it seemed like until Demon came around that she finally was able to truly love Jaxson for everything that he was and his past.
2.  Scarlett – I really thought that she was a great heroine.  She is definitely stronger than she thought and as she makes girlfriends in the book, she is finally able to do things her way and without judgment from her partner.  Her group of friends is diverse and the scenes at the strip club are hilarious.
3.  Jaxson – Besides being too sexy for his shirt and a brilliant attorney, he’s really a softie.  I didn’t figure out a plot point in the book but it explains why Jaxson could be, at times, closed off and why he resisted Scarlett at first.  There were tears in my eyes near the ending of the book for him.  Ms. Fernando does a great job through the last chapters of the book showing us what he is really made of and how early events in his life shaped him to be the man that he is today.
4.  The plot – I will admit that the plot is pretty simplistic but then again, this book is about the characters, not what the blurb tells you.  This is a great character study on the growth of Scarlett after the death of her husband and Jaxson dealing with the death of a loved one.  After all the years of isolation that Scarlett death with, it was like she had to learn to be herself again.  Finding friends, who to trust and how to be free.  I admit that I loved Scarlett.  She’s a feisty one and watching her relationship grow with Jaxson is a delight.  Jaxson’s growth is less subtle but it’s there.
5.  Secondary characters – I loved every single one of them.  Kat, Hunter, Tristin, Callum, Valentina, Faye, Gwen, and Dex.  Oh yes, the MC club, Wind Demons is here, too.  I haven’t read the books but I did buy Faye and Dex’s story because I just fell in love with Faye.  Demon…man, I teared up.  You just have to read it to understand.  I can’t wait to read Callum’s book next.
Overall, I loved the book.  I love Ms. Fernando.  What draws me to her books are the characters.  They are strong, flawed and relatable.  This book deals with some subject matter that may be sensitive to some but Ms. Fernando deals with it beautifully.  I can’t wait until February.

Also Available

 

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
Coming Soon

Releasing February 19, 2018

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

 

Releasing April 17, 2018

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

 

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, Reviews

#Review of A Love Restrained by Becky Flade w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @beckyflade @Becky-Flade #romantic suspense

A Love Restrained

by Becky Flade

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GENRE:   Romantic suspense

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BLURB:

Old secrets, new threats…What are they willing to sacrifice?
Philadelphia police officer Kylee Parker is dedicated to protecting and serving. She sees the work in absolutes: right and wrong, black and white, good guys and bad guys. That is, until she chases a drug dealer into a dead-end alley and finds the bad boy she had a painful crush on throughout her teen years has turned into a more dangerous and more attractive man.


Jayson Donovan knows he doesn’t deserve someone as good as Kylee Parker. As the right hand man to a local drug-pushing mobster, he’s solidly on the wrong side of Kylee’s moral compass. But he can’t help reaching for her time and again when he knows he shouldn’t.
Even when his secrets threaten them both.

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Excerpt One:

Spring in the city brought people out of winter hibernation like a siren song but as the temperature rose, so in turn, did the crime rate. Cops had to be sharp as they walked the streets of Philadelphia. In her ten years on the force, on these streets, she’d seen a lot of crazy and often stupid criminals do a lot of crazy and often stupid things. But to be so brazen, or so plain dumb, as to do a hand-to-hand drug buy right in front of two uniformed officers rode high on her list of top ten. “Tell me you saw that?”

“Saw what?” Hunks of half chewed soft pretzel fell from Sherman’s mouth.

Pete Sherman’s not a bad cop, just not an observant one whose paunch portrayed his love of all things fried and his reupholstered recliner. He hadn’t seen a thing in the last six months. But he took direction well, despite the fact he had seniority.

“There, across the street.” She pointed. “The junkie walking east just scored off the guy in the leather bomber heading west. I swear the dealer looked right at us before the exchange. Call it in, Pete, and grab the junkie. I’m going after the dealer.”

Sherman didn’t argue. She took off into a quick lope, kept her footsteps light so as to not alert the man she pursued. The spring day had drawn people out and the complaints of the pedestrians she weaved through grew loud. The guy glanced over his shoulder, and the edge of his mouth tipped into a grin before he sprinted around the corner.

“Cocky jerk.” She turned the corner, and shouted, “Stop! Police.”

She ran clean and fast, closing the distance between them with little effort. The dealer ducked into an alley she knew to be a dead end. She slowed and put one hand on the butt of her service pistol as she approached. He had his back to her, his hands on his hips as he stared at the brick wall in front of him.

“Philly PD, you’re under arrest. Slowly put your hands above your head and against the wall to your left.” She closed the few feet between them, using her free hand to release the handcuffs from her belt, the other remaining on her weapon. She cuffed him, with practiced efficiency, and then read him his rights before leading him out of the alley, preferring to do the pat down with her partner present.

“Kylee Parker, I’ll admit I daydreamed a time or two about you cuffing me, but it was never in this context.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

You know when you start reading a book with an opening like that, you keep thinking that the book would be snarky?  This book is NOT snarky.  It’s an emotional rollercoaster about a second chance at love between two people that on paper shouldn’t be together but the heart knows what the heart wants.  This book got me from the beginning.  I loved everything about it.  And I mean EVERYTHING!  If I had to say, it’s probably my top pick of the year.

Here’s why:

Kylee Parker – my kind of heroine.  Strong, smart and a cop.  She has some baggage associated with being a cop but she is good at her job.  I liked that about her.  She has issues and that doesn’t include the issues surrounding Jayson.  Her confusion over her feelings about Jayson is relatable but not predictable.  Sure, she hates him, then loves him but doesn’t fall into bed with him at every turn.  As childhood friends, they’ve both grown and that’s where the confusion starts.

Jayson Donovan – just delicious.  But I digress.  Hearing his backstory and his family issues, your heart will break but he does try to rise above it.  The one thing that keeps him sane is Kylee.  I won’t go into all of Jayson because he holds many secrets that spill out in the course of the book that are just jaw-dropping.  Yes, jaw-dropping.

The plot – The blurb is totally misleading.  But I completely understand why Ms. Flade wrote it that way.  Any more and she would have spoiled the book.  You will get to know all about Jayson and Kylee when they were growing up and how they ended up as adults.  Ms. Flade does an excellent job of more jaw-dropping moments in the book and you think, will she stop?  Nope.  Not until the very end.  Yes, the very end.  Hang on for a wild ride in the third part of the book.

Writing style – Its written more in 1st person (Kylee) but you also get Jayson’s thoughts and feelings, too.  She does a great job of never dumbing down the characters in the book and fleshes them out.  The secondary characters are just perfection.  Everyone has a part to play in the book.  Ms. Flade writes beautifully and her characters come to life.  The book is written in three acts.  I’ve never read a book like that and I really liked it.

Emotional – the book will have you on a rollercoaster.  Literally.  Between the budding relationship between Jayson and Kylee, you have both of them with their separate families and then when the families are together.  Both sets of families have secrets that they have kept from Kylee and Jayson and when things are starting to be revealed, your mind will be blown.  Also, don’t expect a lot of smexy times.  They are there but honestly, I don’t think they were needed.  Of course, they ARE needed but Ms. Flade makes us care about her characters without all the unnecessary stuff.

Suspense – Oh my word.  This book never stops after the first act.  The second and third acts are riveting and will leave you second guessing.  Especially the third act.  That act literally had me on the edge of the couch.  I held my breath for most of it and threaten my son if he tried to talk to me.  Ms. Flade does suspense like no one else.  And yes, I read a lot of suspense books so I can spot formulaic suspense anywhere.  Not here.  She keeps you on your toes with all the twists in this book.  *sigh*

I connected with the characters from the beginning.  Both of them are flawed, have baggage but love each other so much that they are willing and do sacrifice their own happiness for the other.  *sigh*  What Jayson did at the end of the first act?  *swoon-worthy* but I had tears.

I can’t impress you to read this book.  I’m so sorry that it ended.  I miss the chaos, the love but most importantly, Jayson and Kylee.  I could read more about this couple for years to come.

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

A city girl, born and bred, I tend to place my stories in and around southeast Pennsylvania, or at least have a character or two from the area. Home is where the heart is and I make mine with my very own knight in slightly tarnished armor, three beautiful daughters, my son-in-law and two grandsons. When I’m not busy living my own happily ever after, I’m writing about someone else’s.

I’d love to have you visit with me at any of my virtual homes or write to me directly at beckyfladeauthor@gmail.com

CONTACT INFO

http://www.beckyfladeauthor.com/

https://www.facebook.com/BeckyFlade

https://twitter.com/beckyflade

http://www.goodreads.com/Becky_Flade

http://www.amazon.com/Becky-Flade

http://www.pinterest.com/BeckyFlade/

 

Buy link:

https://www.amazon.com/Love-Restrained-Becky-Flade-ebook

The book will be on sale for $0.99.

 

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE:

 

Becky Flade will be awarding $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Excerpt, Giveaways, New Release, Release Day, Reviews

Happy Book Birthday & ARC #Review of The Attraction File (a Cake Love Novel #2) by Elizabeth Lynx w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @authorelizabethlynx @givemebooksblog @ELynxAuthor

 

Title: The Attraction File
A Cake Love Series Novel
Author: Elizabeth Lynx
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Release Date: September 21, 2017

 

Blurb
She’s Cold. He’s Hot. When they get together they burn. 
Evaleen Bechmann is too busy running Human Resources for the billion-dollar company, Mimir, to even consider dating. As for emotions, she refuses to discuss that too. It doesn’t matter anyway. She’s invisible to men, especially one man in particular. Evaleen is fine with that. Not everyone gets their happily ever after, that’s only for novels.
Edgar Mirmir is a Nordic god to some, a tech-savvy genius to others, and to women – he is everything they desire. His life should be perfect, and everything he has ever dreamed of… only it’s not. One woman haunts him. When he first saw her, her electric blue eyes shone with defiance, fear, and sorrow. He wanted to reach out to her, but she disappeared. Until one day he turned around
and there she was.
You are probably wondering why I rated both books today “Best of 2017”?  I’ve never done that and I’m getting really picky about the books that I read.  I choose these two because they are from authors that I have never read and honestly, the covers of the books are what sold me to read them.  Truly, the two books could not be the polar opposites.  One is one of the funniest rom com’s that I have read this year and this one is…let me explain.
I get the whole enemies to lovers thing but trust me, this book is so much more to that.  In fact, the book has so many layers that I would go back and re-read passages so that I didn’t miss anything.  Evaleen and Edgar are the two most stubborn characters that I have read in a long time.  There is so much that I could tell you about Evaleen’s and Edgar’s backstory but that’s actually half the book.  The book is told from dual POV’s with flashbacks.  Oops, I probably said too much already.
This book has snark, secrets, a dash of suspense, “firsts”, delicious humor, a hero to die for, a heroine to root for and secondary characters that are so richly written that you think…where is their book?  Oh wait, I have Henrik’s book to read.  I know, I know.  I’m slow but it is on the Kindle.
I admit that I read this book while I was subbing at the high school.  It was just one of those books that I couldn’t stop reading.  Layer after layer is revealed and then BAM!  Edgar and Evaleen are not perfect.  Far from it but they are perfect for each other.  The just fit and understand each other.  I can’t wait for people to read this book and realize that it may or may not be the enemies to lovers story that they are looking for.  It’s much more than that.  A richly written romance with some spice and a dash of suspense/mystery to keep you guessing in the end.
I can’t wait for the masses to get their hands on this one.  Ms, Lynx has written a beautiful book about redemption, second chances, learning to take a chance on love and finding yourself in the end with that special someone.  Edgar and Evaleen’s story has a permanent place in my heart.  It is that good.  Especially for a new to me author.  Ms. Lynx you have a fan for life.  Just need to read Henrik’s book now.
Highly!!!!!

Purchase Links

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

Excerpt

I turned back to end this conversation. “Listen, Chewie—”
“Albert. My name is Albert.” He leaned closer and he wrinkled his forehead in such a way that made it obvious he was fishing for my name. He can keep on fishing because
that was on a need-to-know basis. My mother always said, “Evaleen Bechmann, you are being paranoid,” but in the age of the Internet, giving him my name could be as powerful as giving him a knife.
In a way, I felt bad for Chewie-Albert. The poor guy obviously never learned how to deal with a woman. He believed groping me and refusing to take the hint that I
didn’t want to go out with him was normal. And that’s just sad he’s so oblivious.
“Okay, Albert. You seem like a nice, if not, handsy Star Wars . . . purist. You got a killer costume that any other Star Wars purist of the female species would love—”
“I hear ya.” He winked, nodding as his eyes perused my form.
Sighing, I realized in that moment the Wookie wasn’t getting it. I shouldn’t be surprised, every man I had met hadn’t gotten it. They touched and they took, but they
didn’t understand. That’s why I avoided them. Preferring to remain alone.
“I am not that female, Albert. I am the type of female who chooses to not dress in fur costumes, or skimpy princess costumes, or costumes in general. This female just
likes to stand in a line and be left alone. So, good luck finding your princess, but I am as far from a princess as you will find around here.”
His shining brown eyes dimmed as my words began to sink in. Before he could get any more Wookie courage, I turned back to find the blonde still at the counter. Normally, I
left people alone because, unlike Albert, I respected their space. But surviving on only three hours of sleep before an interview for a job that I needed, action was necessary.
Taking a step forward, I tapped the blonde on her bulbous shoulder and took a breath. 
“Excuse me, Miss, but I believe it has been ten minutes, which is plenty of time to order your drink. Some of us don’t have the luxury of time, and were kept up by our roommate doing gymnastics in bed with her boyfriend until four in the morning.” I gritted my teeth and shook my head trying to get back on point. “So, if you wouldn’t mind placing your order and letting the rest of us have a turn . . .”
Just as I finished, the woman turned to face me.  She had a beard. Also, an Adam’s apple. The woman wasn’t a she but a he. He had a beard, lush and blond like his long hair, not fake and matted like Albert’s costume. His eyes were the most beautiful gray, like smoke rising from a smoldering fire. They slid over my face.
I shivered.
“Miss?” His deep, velvety tone came out thick as butter and rendered me utterly catatonic. The timbre of his voice like a sonic boom under my skin. His skin, on the other
hand, remained still, smooth, and my fingers, for reasons I am attributing to lack of sleep, twitched to touch any part of him.
His eyes widened at what I could only assume was disbelief. Disbelief that a woman of twenty-six years would be referring to a fine specimen of a man, a manly man if
you will, as a woman. Despite his thick blond mane and skirted attire, he was all muscle.
I realized this man was in costume too, like Chewie. Only this man was dressed like the Scottish hero William Wallace and not a sweaty sci-fi version of Sasquatch. He
even painted his face blue and white. 
One would think that a tall man with thick muscles and a wild painted face would instill fear in me, but no. Instead of running in terror, I did the opposite. I laid my hands on him. My fingers caressed his chest working their way down. Doing the exact thing I just lectured Albert not to do. I should have probably stopped.
But I didn’t. Never in my life had I taken advantage of anyone in this manner but he gave off some pheromone that screamed sex me with your hands. Sensing quickly how firm his chest was it propelled me farther down, down to his abs. The man had a six-pack or maybe even an eight-pack; whatever pack was hiding under that brown
threadbare piece of cashmere was making my heart race and lady parts start to turn savage themselves.
“What are you doing?”
He was still there and I was still in the coffee shop. This wasn’t a dream. The kilted blond’s voice broke me out of my self-gratifying pawing and I realized I was
feeling him up, or down as the case may be.
What are you doing, Evaleen?
I froze before snapping my hands away. I began to smooth out my unwrinkled brown blazer as if I wasn’t a chest molester and nothing out of the ordinary just happened.
Clearing my throat, I tried to salvage what little dignity I had left.
“I . . . I . . .” Was all I could get out before I turned to look at the raven-haired barista who either had a rare eye condition that caused her to shoot fire at anyone she laid eyes upon, or she hated me right now. I was going with the latter, so I turned my gaze to the line of customers who had their phones turned up to face me as they filmed what had been occurring. Including Albert.
Great, not only am I mortified, but I will now be some viral Internet sensation known only as, The Woman Chest Molester. Now it was the kilter’s turn to tap his foot as he folded his thick, strong arms in front of himself in protection from the mad chest molester. He’ll probably tell tales to his future kids and grandkids of the crazy chest molester.
“Be wary of her,” he’d say in a low warning with his dialect suddenly turning from American to Scottish. After all, he was dressed as William Wallace.  As he crept down to their eye level, and as the window panes would rattle from the storm that swirled outside his Scottish castle, he would whisper, “For if wee girls and boys don’t do as they’re told, the wiry fingers of the deranged chest molester will grab hold!” The kids would cower, holding their blankets to their little faces; one girl would begin to cry as he wrapped his powerful arms gently around her tiny frame in comfort. 

He’d calm her as he broke out into an old Gaelic tune. 
I start humming out loud the only Gaelic tune I know, which wasn’t really a Gaelic tune but it’s Scottish, so close enough. 
The barista interrupted my musical display, “Is that ‘I Would Walk 500 Miles’?”
I frowned in shame at what I had become in these past few minutes.
“Blue eyes,” the kilted blond mumbled as he stared at me.
Also Available
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

 

 

Author Bio

Elizabeth Lynx writes romantic comedy with steam. She’s a recovering comedian. Wife and mother of the male species. Believer in love & laughter. Her life consists of preventing small catastrophes and wondering if a day will exist when she doesn’t have to fold laundry.

Author Links