#Review and Playlist of Distracting the Duke (Wayward in Wessex #1) by Elizabeth Keysian w/a rafflecopter giveaway!

Distracting the Duke

by Elizabeth Keysian
Publication Date: February 20, 2017
Genres: Adult, Entangled: Select, Historical Romance

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SYNOPSIS:

Devonshire, England, 1820

Determined to avoid the strife-filled marriage of his parents, Marcus, the Duke of Ulvercombe, wants an amenable, biddable wife, and has set his cap for a certain pretty miss. Unfortunately, her vastly opinionated, frustrating, and lamentably beautiful guardian, Lady Clara Tinniswood, keeps distracting him, tempting him to consider a far more tempestuous—and passionate—union.

Recently widowed Lady Clara Tinniswood wants only to organize a quiet new life for herself, beyond the control of any man. But one shockingly unguarded moment while confronted by Marcus’s gloriously naked body catapults her headlong into a forbidden passion and threatens to undermine all her well-laid plans.

Even if Marcus abandons his sweet ideal and surrenders to his growing desire for Clara, there’s one unalterable issue which could destroy their hopes forever…

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MUSIC PLAYLIST for DISRACTING THE DUKE with commentary by author Elizabeth Keysian

  1. 1. The Kiss by Trevor Jones from Last of the Mohicans movie soundtrack–  it floats me away and I travel back in time to the Eighteenth Century
  1. What a Beautiful Day by The Levellers– catchy and uplifting
  1. The Firth of Fifth by Genesis– just an amazing piano instrumental
  1. The Bells of Rhymney by Oysterband– stirs the blood
  1. Mr. Blue Sky by ELO– a cheering reminder of the fun parts of my teenage years!
  1. No Man’s Land by June Tabor– I can’t sing this without a catch in my throat and a tear in my eye. 
  1. Amoureuse by Kiki Dee– evokes the magic of “The First Time”
  1. Ramble On by Led Zeppelin– departure and loss
  1. Blowin’ Free by Wishbone Ash– poetic and atmospheric
  1. Thank You by Led Zeppelin– eternal love
  1. Lady Fantasy by Camel– love, magic and atmosphere- something every good HEA romance should have!

EXCERPT #2

 

Clara crept softly across the carpet of pine needles until she came to where a rivulet split the dunes on its way down to the sea, and halted. She caught sight of Ulvercombe standing at the water’s edge with his back to her, hands on his hips.

She stepped aside swiftly, her heart beating hard. She would have to hide behind one of the dunes to avoid being seen, if he should turn round. Fortunately, the tide was still some way out and he was thus a considerable distance away, giving her time to make her escape if he spotted her.

Plucking off the old shawl she was wearing, she spread it over the grass-matted dune, then lay down on her stomach so only her head—with the telescope pressed to her eye—might be seen. Hopefully, with the waving sea grasses fanning across in front of her, she was well-hidden from any casual observer.

Eventually, she managed to locate Ulvercombe with the glass, and when she did her mouth dropped open in shock. In the time she’d taken to settle herself, he’d stripped off boots, stockings, jacket, and breeches, and now stood in nothing but his shirt, looking out to sea.

Clearly, the man had every expectation of being alone, and had no idea he was being covertly observed. It was early in the morning, it was his beach, his pine forest, his sand. She should back away and return to the house as quickly as possible.

A small attempt to move was made, but then he pulled his shirt over his head and she was transfixed.

The muscles rippled across his shoulders and she recalled, far too quickly, the feel of that hot body pressed against hers.

“Drat it!” The glass lens against her face had misted.

Crossly, she rubbed it with a corner of her shawl, and scanned the beach again until she found the duke.

The completely naked duke.

Her breath hitched in her throat. “Sweet Lord in heaven…”

It was not the splendid symmetry of his body, nor the very pleasing curve of his buttocks, nor even the straightness and supple power of his legs that had elicited her exclamation of shock.

It was the scars.

She hadn’t seen the backs of his thighs when he’d disrobed that day in his bedchamber. Now she could see them very clearly, and she could also see a complex pattern of pale, crisscross lines etched across the skin. They were scars, surely?

Had he received them in battle or in some horrible accident? Had he been taken prisoner and tortured by the French? Maybe he’d been involved in a fire and something hot had branded him thus.

The chance to observe the marks more closely was abruptly removed as the duke, who had been walking straight out into the waves, suddenly dove in with a splash and began swimming out to sea with deft, powerful strokes.

She shuddered. The water must be absolutely freezing. How could he stand it?

“Good morning, Lady Tinniswood. A very fine one, is it not?”

And so my love affair with historicals now is still intact.  Every historical that I have read lately has been awesome.  And they have all been so different from each other, too.  I won’t go into why historicals are so much a hit and miss with me so I’ll just share with you why Clara and Marcus just rocked in my book.

  1.  Clara – I can’t even imagine what she went through with her first husband.  The abuse, the horror, and then finally the ultimate betrayal.  Again, I can’t even…but what I truly liked about her was the fact that she would actually admit it to Marcus.  Of course, she felt shame but when she realized that Marcus was nothing like her dead husband learned to trust him, it was golden.  She also stood up to him.  He wanted someone biddable but what he got was her.  Brilliant dialogue when they were together.
  2. Marcus – What a revelation.  He was kind, a little bit backhanded (in a good way) and once his heart was set on Clara, he wouldn’t take no for an answer.  I loved how he wound up testing her when it came to her fears but Ms. Keysian wrote it brilliantly.  Again, it is her dialogue between the characters that had me from the very first page.  Marcus had NO shame when it came to showing Clara his body.  The above scene had me giggling.  He never forgot that she was a widow but what he didn’t realize at the time was how traumatized she was from her first marriage.
  3. The smexy times are NOT plentiful but the build up is SO worth it.  Ms. Keysian had me fanning myself at times and that was before the dead was actually done.  Well played, well played.
  4. The secondary characters are wonderfully written.  I can’t wait to read about Ellie and Snetty.  Oh, my…If I had one complaint, I didn’t like Clara’s brother Phillip in the beginning.  He kinda came off as a shrew.  I understand the why but I still didn’t like him that much.
  5. The setting – I’m a sucker for England and especially the English countryside.  Like another English author I know, she knows what she writes about when it comes to the setting of the book.

Did I mention that not once, NOT ONCE in the book was bored with the ton.  This is a character driven novel about two people that shouldn’t fall in love with each but do.  The getting there is half the fun of the book and I have to say that I don’t even know what Clara wore in the book.  She had a bonnet, a shawl, and a thin summer cotton nightgown.  Why do I mention this?  Because I didn’t have to skip a bunch of paragraphs/pages with all the details that bore me to death.  Again, characters are key for me in a historical romance and Ms. Keysian wrote it that way.  Of course, I don’t think I’ll look at skinny dipping the same way again.

Do yourself a favor and buy this book.  Just for me, please.  You will not be disappointed at all.  It has all the romance of a historical, some family issues but now the filler that irritates so much.

 

ABOUT ELIZABETH KEYSIAN

Elizabeth Keysian felt destined to write historical romance due to her Cornish descent, and an ancestral connection to the Norse god Odin. Being an only child gave her plenty of time to read, create imaginary worlds, produce her own comics, and write sketches and a deplorably bad musical for an amateur dramatics group.

Three decades spent working in museums and archaeology fired Elizabeth’s urge to write, as did living on a Knights Templar estate, with a garage full of skeletons, a resident ghost and a moat teeming with newts.

Elizabeth lives near Bath in England with her partner and cats.

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ENTER THE GIVEAWAY


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It’s here! It’s here! Nova (The Renegades #2) by Rebecca Yarros! w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @TastyBookTours @RebeccaYarros @EntangledPub

Harlie here:  OMG!!!!  He’s here!  He’s here!  When I read the first book in the series, Wilder, I truly thought I would die.  I don’t read NA but Ms. Yarros sold me on this series and Wilder, the Renegades #1 was on my top 10 list from last year.  I have already bought Nova’s book and will read it on the cruise.  Poetic, I think.  😉  Thank you Ms. Yarros for writing an intelligent, sexy and engrossing NA series.   
 
The only heart he wants is the one he already broke…
NOVA
The Renegades #2
Rebecca Yarros
Releasing February 20th, 2017
Entangled Embrace

 

The only heart he wants is the one he already broke…

He’s Landon Rhodes.
The Renegade they call Nova.
Sinfully gorgeous, broody, tatted-up, professional snowboarder.
Four-time X Games medalist—
Full-time heartbreaker.
 
They say a girl broke him once—that’s why he’s so reckless, so driven, so careless with his conquests.
 
But I’m that girl.
They can call me his curse all they want.
He and I both know the truth—
He’s the one who destroyed me,
And I’m not the sucker who will let that happen again.

***NOVA can be read as a
standalone***
 

Excerpt #2

“How many have there been, Landon? How many memories are in your bed nowadays?” She forged on ahead, her eyes glossing over with a layer of what I was hesitant to call tears. “Can you remember them all?”

Heat rushed through my veins, a nauseating mixture of anger, shame, and the bitter taste of regret. My brain screamed at me to retreat and lick my wounds, to try again with her when she wasn’t on offense.

My heart reminded me that I was going to have to fight for this woman with every weapon in my arsenal if I wanted her.

And damn, I wanted her. Craved her. Needed her.

She was the only one I’d ever felt connected to—the only one my heart woke up and shook off the ice for. The only woman who challenged me and took me down in the process.

I stepped forward and clamped both of my hands on the table, boxing her between my arms. She craned her head to keep my gaze, unwilling to back down. It was the quality that both frustrated the hell out of me and turned me on faster than anything—her constant refusal to yield for just a fucking second.
 “Can I remember them all? Probably not.”


She snorted.


“You want to know why?” I didn’t wait for her to answer. “Because blonde, redhead, brunette—I saw their features for a millisecond. The moment I had one of them in my bed, they all had eyes the color of dark chocolate and hair so black it was almost blue…” I glanced at her hair. “Or purple. I never needed to remember them, because they were always you.”

“Don’t say things like that,” she begged. As if I could physically see her walls start to crumble, she softened. “You don’t get to say things like that to me. Not anymore.

 

Rebecca Yarros is a hopeless romantic and a lover of all things coffee, chocolate, and Paleo. She is the author of the Flight & Glory series, which includes Full Measures, the award-winning Eyes Turned Skyward, Beyond What Is Given, and HallowedGround. She loves military heroes and has been blissfully married to hers for fifteen years.
 
When she’s not writing, she’s tying hockey skates for her four sons, sneaking in some guitar time, or watching Brat Pack movies with her two daughters. She lives in Colorado with the hottest Apache pilot ever, their rambunctious gaggle of kids, and an English bulldog who is more stubborn than sweet. They recently adopted their youngest daughter from the foster system, and Rebecca is passionate about helping others do the same.
 

 

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Guest Post & #Review of Claimed by the Cyborg (Cy-Ops Sci-fi #5) by Cara Bristol w/a rafflecopter giveaway!

 

Claimed by the Cyborg

by Cara Bristol

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GENRE:   Science Fiction Romance

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BLURB:

March Fellows assumed he had all the time in the galaxy to pursue a relationship with Jules, an alien exchange student from Xenia, until she vanished without a trace. After years of searching, he finds his lost love on the eve of her arranged marriage.

The daughter of the Xenian emperor, Julietta never meant to fall in love with a Terran man while visiting Earth. Leaving to fulfill her responsibilities on her home planet opened up a hole in her heart that could never be filled. When March, now a cyborg, unexpectedly shows up just before she is to be bonded, she struggles to find the courage to turn him away a second time and follow through with her duty.

Before she can act, the lovers are thrust into a political conspiracy that threatens the Xenian empire and their lives.

Claimed by the Cyborg is a standalone read in the Cy-Ops Sci-fi Romance series.

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Excerpt Three:

“If Naimo should…pass, what will happen?”

“The seer will choose another mate for me.”

“You will go through with it?”

“I will be required to.” The idea sickened her, but responsibility only could be delayed; it could not be shirked. Each postponement shortened the time available to produce an heir. She and Naimo or his replacement would have to couple often to ensure she got pregnant by the deadline.

“I hope for your sake he recovers, and you live a long and happy life together. I apologize for interrupting your solitude.”

She would never see him again. Her heart seized, but she didn’t dare watch him go. Julietta gripped the pillar of the tacani for support. Tears trickled down her cheeks.

For a big man, he moved quietly, his footfalls making the merest pitter patter on the floor. In seconds the door would open and—

She whirled around.

March stood in front of her, his face stony, his blue eyes lit with an emotion she couldn’t read.

He grabbed her and yanked her against his chest. Her feet left the floor. One strong hand slid under her hair to grip her nape and tilt her head. His mouth slammed down on hers, would have forced her lips to part, but she was already opening for his kiss, drowning in it. Waves after wave of need swamped her body, eradicating all thought and will, except for the need to get closer, to meld into one body so no space, no cultural divide, no duty could separate them.

His tongue lashed hers, but she accepted his anger as penance, craved more, incited more as she lashed back. Teeth gnashed, deliberate and accidental, drawing blood that mixed with the decadent taste of him. Her head swirled, and she grabbed at his shoulders for support. Taut muscle, as hard as rock, offered no give, like his kiss. He didn’t coax, he took, anger and pain evident in the crush of his mouth, the steel grip of his hands.

Scalding tears of love and despair poured from her eyes and into their mouths.

When he dropped her on her feet and thrust her away, it was like tumbling into the abyss again, like returning to Xenia all those years ago.

He wiped his lips as if to erase her touch. “Have a good life, Jules.” He left and never looked back.

Series bible

By Cara Bristol

I was asked if I write a series bible or if I just start writing.

Series bible? You mean, make things easy on myself? Banish the thought!

No, I just start writing. I’m a pantser. I make up the story as I go along. I don’t even know I’m writing a series until I finish the first book. I’ve written three series now: the Rod and Cane Society, Breeder, and the Cy-Ops Sci-fi Romance series and with every one, I started the first book thinking it was going to be a single title.

That said, I have a made some lists related to the series. In the Breeder, there were a lot of “alien” words, so I created a glossary for myself so I could remember. And in the Cy-Ops Sci-fi Romance series, I listed the various usages of “cyber.” Cyber Operations is the secret organization of cyborg cyberoperatives, called Cy-Ops for short. Plus a bunch of other words. I had to keep track of which terms were two words, which were hyphenated, and which were single words.

Since secondary characters can become main characters and vice versa, sometimes I have to go back through previously published books to find out what I said. Did he have brown eyes or blue? What color was her hair? Where did he work again?

Ironically, I outline my short stories but write the novels by the seat of my pants. I have a gut feeling that the stuff I come up on the fly is better than if I sat down and cold-plotted. It feels more natural, more creative to me.

Seriously?  Why are you NOT reading this series?  I know, I know.  I don’t read much sci/fi because frankly, I’m more visual when it comes to the genre.  Star Wars/Star Trek anyone?  But I can not get enough of Ms. Bristol’s Cy series.  The men are hot, brave, loyal and fierce when it comes to their lady loves.  The women are just as equal to the men.  No wallflowers here.  Sure, they have some kind of conflict going on but in the end, the hero and heroine are equals and treat each other as such.

March is just awesome.  In fact, he might be my favorite out of the series.  He gets pulled back into the Cyber Operations world when things go south.  I really liked his interaction with Carter, the head of Cy-Ops.  I’ve heard from a very good source, that Carter FINALLY gets his book next.  About time.  He has intrigued me from the start.  Anyone, March is one of the good guys that never leaves a man down or a woman that he has wanted for the last five years.  He never gives up and he never gave up on Jules.  The sweetest part of the book is towards the end.  He gave her something to work towards and finally had her see what exactly was going on.  Of course, she already had figured out most of it.

Jules, of my Jules.  I adored how she was able to incorporate the Terran world with her own.  She never expected to see March again, much less be able to be with him.  She had two things in her heart…her planet and her love for March.  She just never thought that she would be able to have both.  I loved how Ms. Bristol brought their two worlds together and also, explained Jules’ culture and how the bonding is for the good of her planet.  Ms. Bristol has a way of explaining her worlds without dumbing it down or reaching out so far that no one would understand it.  She makes the story flow with her words and characters.

You really care about them and how everything is going play out.  I felt so sorry for Naimo in the end.  He didn’t deserve what happened in the end.  And trust me when I tell you this…the ending is SO unexpected.  Loved it.  How it all played out is brilliant.  I just wanted to slap Kur upside his head.  How could he?  And his father, too?  Anyways….

Do yourself a favor and pick up this book and series.  It’s brilliant!

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

 

USA Today bestselling author Cara Bristol has been the no. 1 best seller in science fiction romance, bdsm erotica, and holiday fiction on Amazon. She’s the author of two science fiction romance series featuring tough alpha heroes: the Cy-Ops Sci-fi Romance cyborg series and the Breeder science fiction romance series, which emphasize character-driven stories written with a touch of humor and sizzling chemistry between the hero and heroine. Cara lives in Missouri with her own alpha hero, her husband.

Cara’s Website:  http://carabristol.com

Amazon Author Page:  https://www.amazon.com/Cara-Bristol/e/B004D8KZTQ

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/cara.bristol.3

Author Newsletter:  http://eepurl.com/9aRJj

Twitter: @CaraBristol https://twitter.com/CaraBristol

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/carabristol/

 

Buy Links:

 

Amazon: http://hyperurl.co/Claimed-Amz

iBooks: http://hyperurl.co/Claimed-iBooks 

Kobo: http://hyperurl.co/Claimed-Kobo

BN:  http://hyperurl.co/Claimed-BN

 

Paperback version: http://hyperurl.co/ClaimedinPrint

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

Cara Bristol will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
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