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#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
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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
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#Review of The Mistress of Pennington’s & Interview of Rachel Brimble w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @RachelBrimble #HistoricalRomance

The Mistress of Pennington’s

by Rachel Brimble

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GENRE: Saga/Romance

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BLURB:

Elizabeth Pennington should be the rightful heir of Bath’s premier department store through her enterprising schemes and dogged hard work. Her father, Edward Pennington, believes his daughter lacks the business acumen to run his empire and is resolute a man will succeed him.

Determined to break from her father’s iron-clad hold and prove she is worthy of inheriting the store, Elizabeth forms an unlikely alliance with ambitious and charismatic master glove-maker Joseph Carter. United they forge forward to bring Pennington’s into a new decade, embracing woman’s equality and progression whilst trying not to mix business and pleasure.

Can this dream team thwart Edward Pennington’s plans for the store? Or will Edward prove himself an unshakeable force who will ultimately ruin both Elizabeth and Joseph?

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Excerpt Two:

He moved to walk away, and she reached for his arm before she could think just how dangerous such contact could be. He halted, and even when he looked at her fingers clutched on his forearm, she did not remove them. It suddenly felt important she touch him; that he understood she had care for what he said or asked her.

Even though the physical contact set her heart racing, she held her grasp. ‘Why do you ask me about your family?’

He closed his eyes and dropped his chin to his chest.

Disquiet whispered through her. What had caused such uncharacteristic hesitation in him?

‘Joseph…’ She slid her hand from his arm, ignoring the pang of loss that the break of contact brought. ‘If there’s something bothering you, please, share it with me.’

He slowly raised his head, his blue eyes full of irritation once more. ‘I will, but not here. Not on the street. I’d prefer to come to your office tomorrow.’

How was she supposed to wait until tomorrow? Her curiosity was rife. It was clear something had changed between them. Something, it seemed, of which she was the cause.

She nodded. ‘I’ll send a message to you first thing in the morning.’

‘Thank you. Until then, I bid you good day.’

He walked away, leaving Elizabeth with questions and words flailing on her tongue. She stared after him, fearful of the pull deep in her chest that Joseph’s concerns had somehow become hers. No good could come of such caring. Her only goal should be proving her worth and capability in Pennington’s and beyond. She could not allow one man, any man, to have such an effect on her.

She inhaled a long breath and walked towards Pennington’s doors.

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Welcome Rachel! Please start off by telling us a little about yourself.

 

I’ve been married to the fabulous ‘Mr B’ for twenty years and we have two beautiful teenage daughters as well as my baby, a chocolate Labrador called Tyler. I have been published since 2007 and have since had twenty-one novels published by small presses as well as Harlequin and eKensington.

 

Just recently I signed a 4-book contract with Aria Fiction in the UK and I’m absolutely thrilled to be working with such a wonderful, enthusiastic team. When I’m not writing, I like to read, knit, walk the English countryside and watch far too much TV.


Is The Mistress of Pennington’s a single title, or part of a series?

 

It’s book 1 in a brand-new Edwardian series, but I promise all the books will read well as stand-alone, too.

Please share your setting for The Mistress of Pennington’s. Have you ever lived or visited there? If so, what did you like most?

 

The book is set in the city of Bath, England which is just a short thirty-minute drive from where I live. I adore Bath! It’s steeped in Georgian and Regency history and the architecture is astounding. If your visitors have never been to this historical city, I strongly them to do so. For me, the must-sees are the Bath Museum, Royal Crescent (including No1 which is open to the public), the Roman Baths and the Theatre Royal.

 

As for the department store where the majority of the action in The Mistress of Pennington’s takes place, that’s inspired by Le Bon Marche in Paris.

If you could have an author roundtable discussion with any authors, who would you invite?

 

Ooh, great question! It would have to be Nora Roberts, Philippa Gregory, Margaret Mitchell, Jodi Picoult and Alex Grecian.

 

I am a huge fan of these authors and would love for them to share all their tips and plotting skills, so I can finally understand this writing thing!


Do you have any hobbies or special things you like to do in your spare time?

 

My second obsession to writing is knitting – I absolutely love it! Nothing is more relaxing to me than sitting in front of the TV with my knitting. I literally can’t watch TV without a pair of needles in my hands – it feels so strange and, no matter how good the show, boring, lol! Every now and then, I consider if I could start a business selling my creations but, deep down, I know I’m nowhere good enough!


What is the one thing that you would tell an inspiring writer to do?

 

I’ve shared this advice a LOT over the course of my career, but it was truly the best advice I was ever given – ‘Give yourself permission to write a crappy first draft’.

If you can get rid of your internal editor and that little voice in your head saying, ‘you can’t do this’ ‘you’re not good enough’ or ‘every word is rubbish’, your output will quadruple, and you’ll get to the all-important END. A filled page can be polished, a blank page can’t. Simple!

What can I say?  I’ve been reading Ms. Brimble since she started and this is her best book to date.  She just nails with the first book in the series.  I will admit though, that this time period is a mystery to me.  I’ve read enough all of the “other” historical time periods, including hers to know what I’m reading.  But this?  Fascinating.  I don’t watch Downtown Abbey, so I’m clueless to the time.  It’s the woman’s movement and men are still stuck in the Regency period.  Heck, they have evolved into the Victorian Age yet.

To me, Ms. Brimble brings her vast knowledge of the area, the time period but most importantly her characters.  Ms. Brimble’s characters never cease to amaze me.  Elizabeth and Joseph have got to be some of my favorites that she has written.  It’s a clean, sweet romance between them and honestly, I’m grateful for that.  Elizabeth has been belittled, badgered and put down by her father for the longest time and she has decided that she doesn’t need a man.  Her father is just awful.  I’ve never read such a vile, cruel character in all my years.  It is no wonder that his wife…oops.  Almost gave away a plot point.  But when she meets Joseph and realizes that he has the same goals as her, what’s a gal to do?

Joseph is the enlightened character in the book.  He actually understands Elizabeth and what she wants to accomplish.  Plus, come on gloves?  No one wears them anymore but I do remember my grandmother’s and my mom wearing them.  Or at least having them.  Again, Ms. Brimble takes us into a world that is elegant, interesting and above all…not boring.  Reminder:  Harlie hates when an author gives too much detail in a historical romance and not enough about the characters.  Ms. Brimble never does that.  Her books are more character driven but she surprised me with the depth of detail in the relationship between the characters and the department store itself.  I actually pictured the scene in Wonder Woman where she is trying on clothes and went from there.

I wish I could write a novel about this book but I would bore you to tears.  Again, this is Ms. Brimble’s best book to date and I can’t wait to see what happens in the next book at Pennington’s.

 

 

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

 

Rachel lives with her husband and two teenage daughters in a small town near Bath in the UK. Since 2007, she has had several novels published by small US presses, eight books published by Harlequin Superromance (Templeton Cove Stories) and four Victorian romances with eKensington/Lyrical.

 

In January 2018, she signed a four-book deal with Aria Fiction for a brand new Edwardian series set in Bath’s finest department store. The first book, The Mistress of Pennington’s, will release in July 2018.

 

Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and Romance Writers of America, and was selected to mentor the Superromance finalist of So You Think You Can Write 2014 contest. When she isn’t writing, you’ll find Rachel with her head in a book or walking the beautiful English countryside with her family. Her dream place to live is Bourton-on-the-Water in South West England.

 

She likes nothing more than connecting and chatting with her readers and fellow romance writers. Rachel would love to hear from you!

Links:

 

http://rachelbrimble.com/

http://rachelbrimble.blogspot.com/

https://twitter.com/RachelBrimble

https://www.facebook.com/rachelbrimbleauthor/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/RachelsReaders/?fref=ts

 

Amazon Author Page:

https://www.amazon.com/Rachel-Brimble/e/B007829ZRM/

 

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1806411.Rachel_Brimble

 

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

 

Rachel Brimble will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Excerpt, Giveaways

Excerpt from Heart Stopping (St. Leasing #4) by L.P. Maxa w/a rafflecopter giveaway! @lpmaxa #paranormalromance @BoroughsPubGrp

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. One randomly drawn commenter via Rafflecopter will receive $15 in Boroughs Bucks. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour. Boroughs Publishing Group can’t wait to give you a Xmas gift in July. Join the party: https://www.facebook.com/events/202551280465596/?active_tab=discussion

LOVE ETERNAL

Ten years ago Baze Carter fell irrevocably in love and knew he’d found his forever only to have her ripped from his arms, never to be seen again. Broken, and unable to find her, he made a life for himself as a baseball coach at St. Leasing School for Boys. Their secret, hidden for centuries, has been in peril for the past year, and now more than ever, Baze and his pack need to end the evil that plagues them. When Penelope Sutton is discovered bruised and battered lying in the road in front of his home, Baze is elated and murderous in equal measure. Anyone who dare harm his long lost mate will be made to pay, but not before Baze and Pen find their way back to each other.

Read an Excerpt

“Hey, you okay?” She came out of the bathroom, steam escaping through the open door. Baze was bent at the waist, clutching the high-backed armchair next to the bed she’d slept in. She could see the tension in his posture. “Do I still smell like—”

“Please, Pen, please don’t say his name.” He turned to look at her, his eyes pleading. “I can’t handle it right now.”

She lifted her arm, smelling her skin. She thought she smelled like the soap she’d used in the shower. But her nose wasn’t the nose of a shifter. “Do I, uh, smell okay?”

He nodded. “You smell like me.” He took a step toward her, his hands reaching.

She wanted him to touch her, so her heart sank when his palms dropped back to his side. Penelope stood still, not sure what to do next. She’d showered like he’d asked; she was wearing his clothes. Now it was time for them to go downstairs and meet his pack. She’d be lying if she said she wasn’t nervous. Packs weren’t common, not in this day. But from what she knew, shifter packs were closer than family. They were tight-knit, protective, and they didn’t take to outsiders all that well.

She may have been Baze’s whole world when they were kids, but they were basically strangers at this point.

“When you meet them, my friends, you can’t touch them.”

Her eyes snapped to his face. “What?”

He shook his head, his gaze weary. “I feel…on edge. I feel possessive of you, and I can’t seem to shake it.” He licked his lips. “I’ll get it under control. But in the meantime, please don’t let them touch you. Especially the young guys, they’re not bonded.”

Was everything they’d gone through as kids coming back full force? Would the pain come back too? And the million-dollar question: what would they do about it if it did?

She nodded, letting him know that she’d heard him and she understood. And when he gestured for her to step in front of him, she waited in the hall to let him lead her down the stairs and into what appeared to be a massive living room.

The first thing she saw was the mounds of Chinese food on the large, long walnut coffee table. She put her hand on her stomach when it growled loudly. It’d been days since she’d had a real meal. She was starving, and now everyone knew it. “Sorry.”

A girl with long blonde hair, a shade lighter than Pen’s, stepped forward. “Don’t apologize.” Her smile was kind and she held a plate out, piled high with lo mein and orange chicken. “I’m Molly, Keller’s mate.”

“Thank you.” Pen took the food, not able to resist the smell any longer.

Molly kept standing, pointing around the room at each person in turn. “That’s Corey, Dominic, Lincoln, Madden, Jasper, Jace, Riley, and my mate Keller.” Molly laughed lightly. “Don’t worry about remembering everyone’s names. We won’t quiz you until tomorrow.”

Pen sent the group a wave. “Penelope. But you can call me Pen.” She glanced to Baze, gauging his reaction. He’d been the first person to ever call her Pen, but it’d stuck even after they’d been separated. Maybe it was her way of keeping him with her, even when there were oceans between them.

“You can call me Dom, and that skinny guy over there goes by Linc.” The man who’d addressed her stood, holding his hand out.

She looked at it but took a step away. “Sorry, I um…” She let her words trail off. She was normally a friendly person; she was a hugger. But she believed Baze when he’d said he was on edge and he didn’t want anyone to touch her. She may not be one hundred percent certain what the future held for the two of them, but she didn’t want to make the present any harder than it needed to be.

“Don’t touch her, any of you.” Baze grabbed her arm and gently hauled her behind his body and onto a vacant chair that looked like it had been pulled in from an unseen dining room. “I can’t handle it.”

Dom held his hands up in surrender. “No problem, man. I know how that feels.”

About the Author:

L.P. lives in Austin, Texas with her husband, daughter, three rescue dogs, four chickens, two dwarf goats, and one adopted cat. The fish died. She is a full-time writer, and part time business owner. L.P. says she loves to read as much as she loves to write, and reading a good book is her reward after writing one. In her spare time, she fosters puppies for a rescue organization based in Austin.

https://www.lpmaxa.com
https://www.facebook.com/lpmaxa
https://twitter.com/lpmaxa

Buy links:

http://boroughspublishinggroup.com/books/heart-stopping
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07F5N6WGM
https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/heart-stopping/id1406272849?mt=11
https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/heart-stopping-lp-maxa/1128988658?ean=2940155319047
https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/heart-stopping
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/872284

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