Thursday, July 24, 2014

Interview-Review- Caitlin Crews- Undone by the Sultan's Touch

Today I welcome USA Today and a personal favorite whose Harlequin Presents novels I review for RT Magazine.
RT has a rating scale that starts with a 2 and goes all the way up to a TOP PICK GOLD, to reach this pinnacle a novel has to stand out and Undone By The Sultan's Touch did just that by going above and beyond the brand standard. When I read and fell in love with this novel I knew I had to invite Caitlin to the blog.
Enjoy our chat!




  • ISBN-13: 9780373132669
  • Publisher: Harlequin
  • Publication date: 7/15/2014
  • Series: Harlequin Presents Series , #3260
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 192
 



Overview

"Kiss me, if you are so daring."
When Cleo Churchill's travels land her in the path of Khaled bin Aziz, Sultan of Jhurat, she's instantly transfixed by his warrior physique, commanding presence and intense eyes. But what would a sultan want with an ordinary girl like her?


Read an Excerpt:

The girl came out of nowhere.
Cleo Churchill stamped on the brakes in her tiny rental car, gasping as the car swerved before coming to a jolting halt in the narrow little alley of a road somewhere deep in the twisting, ancient heart of the capital city of Jhurat.
For one panicked heartbeat, then another, she thought she'd been seeing things. The blazing desert sun was only then beginning to drop behind the ornate historic buildings, making the shadows lengthen and stretch. She'd lost her way in the tangle of old streets and one city looked very much like another after six months of traveling all around Europe and into the Middle East. And more to the point, there was absolutely no reason a girl should dive in front of her car—
But there she was, young and wide-eyed and startlingly pretty behind her flowing scarves, right there at the passenger window—seemingly unharmed.
I didn't hit her, thank God.
"Please!" The girl spoke through the car's open window, desperate and direct. "Help me!"
Cleo didn't think. The adrenaline of the near miss hummed through her with an almost sickening electricity, but she motioned toward the door, aware as she did it that her hands were shaking.
"Are you all right?" she asked as the girl wrenched open the door and threw herself inside. "Are you hurt? Do you need—?"
"Drive!" the girl cried as if pursued by demons. "Please!
Before—"
Cleo didn't wait to find out before what. She'd escaped her own demons, hadn't she? She knew how it was done. She stepped on the gas pedal, scowling as she concentrated fiercely on the narrow road in front of her, which she dearly hoped led back out of this maze of ancient narrow streets that wound erratically around Jhurat's central palace, home to its governing sultan. Beside her, the girl breathed heavily and high-pitched, as if she'd been running.
"You're okay," Cleo said, trying to soothe her—or even herself. "We're okay now."
And then a man stalked out of the shadows, directly into the car's path, as if daring Cleo to run straight into him. She heard herself gasp out a curse, but her eyes were fixed on him as surely as if he'd demanded it.
He was tall and fierce, forbidding and uncompromising in the loose robes that marked him a local—a wealthy local—and did nothing at all to conceal his markedly powerful form. The sun was behind him and hid his face, but Cleo could still feel the weight of his stare. Like an impossible knot in her own chest.
He stood there in the center of the road, imperious and bold. He crossed his arms over his broad chest and waited—and it wasn't until she realized he wasn't moving that she also realized she wasn't, either. That she'd stopped the car directly in front of him as if he'd held up his hands like a police officer and commanded it.
When all he'd done was stare.
Despite herself, Cleo shivered. Foreboding. Fear.
And something else, maybe, beneath it, that she'd never felt before.
He bit out something ferocious in Arabic that made the girl beside her jerk in her seat as if he'd slapped her, and Cleo's stomach twisted.
This is not good, she thought.
"Get out of the car," he said then, his voice deep and autocratic, and it took a long, shuddering moment for Cleo to realize that this time, he was speaking directly to her. Issuing an implacable order in a language she could understand, right through the glass. "Now."
"Who is that?" she whispered, still unable to pull her gaze away from him. He was simply too mesmerizing. Too powerful.
The girl beside her let out a sound that was something like a sob, but far angrier. When Cleo finally managed to yank her attention away from the dark and dangerous man taking over the road before them, the girl's jaw was set in a stubborn line, and her mouth trembled. Making her look even younger than Cleo had originally thought she was.
"That," the girl said bitterly, staring out the front window at the man who still stood there, not moving an inch, as if he expected it to be nothing but a matter of moments before he was obeyed, "is His Excellency, the Sultan of Jhurat."
This was, Cleo realized dimly then, a great deal worse than not good.
"What?" she asked weakly, that thudding panic hitting harder, sending out shock waves. He didn't look like a sultan. He looked like some kind of warrior angel, sent down to smite and awe. She felt both smitten and awed, the sensations too hot and almost painful inside of her. "Why would a sultan—the sultan—chase you down an alley?"
"Because he is a demon from hell." The girl's mouth twisted. "He is also my brother."
Cleo swallowed, hard.
He stood there, waiting. And now she understood what that proud ruthlessness meant. What that thing was that emanated from him like a force field, rendering the whole city small and inconsequential beside him.
Cleo's mind raced, and for some reason, she thought of Brian then. Weak, lying Brian. Brian, who had humiliated her. Brian, who had said he loved her but couldn't possibly have meant it, could he? Brian, who she'd believed so completely when he'd never had even a shred of the intensity or authority the man before her simply… oozed.
The sultan jerked his head in a silent yet remarkably eloquent command to exit the vehicle.
Immediately.
And Cleo forgot about stupid, cheating Brian and the girlfriend he'd kept on the side for almost the entirety of their doomed engagement.
This was exactly the kind of thing she'd promised her parents back in Ohio would never happen to her, because she'd imagined she was too smart, or too cynical, to fall prey to scenarios like this. This was exactly what her mother and her hysterical aunts had predicted would happen if she did something so radical as explore the world by herself. She could practically hear the doom-and-gloom predictions they'd all shared with her whether she'd wanted them to or not, like a going-away present, as if they were whispering it in her ear from across the planet.
They'd begged her not to do this. They'd told her running away from her problems was only running straight into new ones. And now look what had happened.
The sultan waited. Less patient by the moment.
"Just drive over him," the girl beside her demanded. "Mow him down where he stands."
"I can't," Cleo said, except she found she was whispering. "I can't do that."
And everything seemed to slow down, as though the air was made of syrup and there was nothing but him. That man. The sultan. She shifted the car into Park. Beside her, the girl let out a frustrated noise, but Cleo's attention was riveted on the man at the end of her bumper. Still. Watchful. Ferocious.
Her neck prickled with a deep foreboding. With anxiety. With the sense of immensity, as if what she was about to do was already sealed in stone, as ancient and unmoving and inevitable as the venerable city around her, as the old streets beneath her.
As the man before her. The sultan of all he surveyed.
Who couldn't be weak, she knew somehow, if he tried.
Cleo turned off the rental car's ignition with a decisive click and then opened her door, ignoring the girl in the passenger seat as she got out and stood there.
The sultan moved then. He nodded at someone behind her and men in military uniforms appeared as if from thin air, surrounding the rental car, all wearing machine guns that dwarfed their bodies.
Cleo didn't understand a single word of the rapid-fire Arabic, all shouted back and forth in so many harsh and loud male voices, and yet somehow she couldn't bring herself to look away from the sultan as he continued to stand there staring back at her.
One of his men appeared beside her and held out his hand, making Cleo flinch. She glanced at him, then back at the sultan, aware then of how fragile she was. She felt it in ways she never had before. Fragile and exposed and frighteningly vulnerable.
And it was still better than how Brian had made her feel, two weeks before their wedding, when she'd come home early from work and found him on the living room floor of his condo with that woman.
The sultan said something, and she realized it wasn't the first time.
"I'm sorry, I didn't hear you," she said, and she hardly sounded like herself.
He paused, and she wished she had something more than this shadowy impression of his face. That the sun would hide behind the buildings at last so she could look at him without her eyes watering. So she could convince herself that he was neither as cruel nor as inhuman as he appeared while backlit like a god.
So she could tell herself that the twisting heat that knotted her belly, low and hot, was based on something more than the intuition she'd learned better than to trust.
But his voice, when it came, was as calm as it was deep, despite the tension she could hear beneath it, and for no reason at all, it eased her. Even as it set her on fire.
"Do you know who I am?"
"Yes."
A faint nod. "Give my man your keys."
An implacable order delivered in perfect English, with a crisp British accent to boot. Cleo knew she should ask questions. Demand to know what was happening to her, what he planned to do next. Instead, she simply obeyed.
She opened her hand and the man beside her took the keys from her palm, and the whole time she was lost in the will of the powerful man whose face was still in shadows before her.
Why couldn't she seem to breathe? Why did it feel as if the earth were buckling beneath her feet when she could see—because no one else was reacting to it, no one else was moving, the car was solid and unmoving beside her—that it was only happening inside of her?
Everything seemed to stretch out, slow and taut, but then the car engine turned over beside her, the men and the car and the angry girl disappeared after a brief consultation, and Cleo was standing alone in an alleyway in a foreign country with a man so great and powerful he held a title she'd half believed only existed in books.
He moved then, and she wished he hadn't. He was like liquid, a threat wrapped in poetry, athletic and menacing at once. The knot inside her pulled taut, red and hot. Cleo stood still as he walked in a slow circle around her. He held something in his hands and she realized it was the wallet she'd left sitting in one of the cup holders in the car. One of his men must have—
"Eyes on me," he ordered her, his voice a silken command.
And when she jerked her attention back up from her wallet to his face, she could see it, finally. Could see him.
Beautiful, something whispered inside her, though he wasn't.
He was much too fierce. He reminded her of those remote villages she'd found in her travels, clinging to the sides of rugged mountains long days from anywhere, proud and breathtaking and unimaginably tough. He had thick dark hair and a poet's face made shockingly masculine by a warrior's cool, light gaze and the sort of tough jaw Cleo associated with soldiers and martial artists—and thugs. A blade of a nose. Faint lines around his eyes suggested he must have smiled at some point in his life, but she couldn't imagine it. He seemed carved entirely from stone.
He looked so masculine and so inarguably fierce it was almost as if he and soft, round-faced,nice-looking Brian were of a different species. She told herself that was why her heart beat so fast. Because he was the not Brian.
And because he really was beautiful.
"You are American."
It wasn't a question.
"Yes."
His gaze moved over her and she had to fight not to squirm. She was wearing dark trousers and scuffed boots beneath a loose-fitting T-shirt, and a dark jacket as much to cover herself in this conservative part of the world as to block the faint chill in the air, hinting at the coming fall night. She'd twisted her long hair back, but the long day had coaxed some of it down again, strands falling forward messily and making her feel much younger than her twenty-five years.
Cleo didn't want to ask herself why, exactly, she wished there was something more in his dark gaze then. Something to match that heat inside her.
He flipped open her wallet and looked inside. "You are a very long way from Ohio."
"I'm traveling," she said, and her voice sounded strange. Huskier than usual. Raw, somehow. "Backpacking."
"Alone?"
She didn't want to admit that, for some reason. For a hundred reasons. But he lifted his gaze from her wallet and the license he was presumably studying, and she felt hot. Caught.
"Yes," she said, fighting to sound normal. "It's been six months. I fly home in two weeks."
And the truth was, she didn't want to go back. Not yet. Maybe not ever.
"Unless, of course, you find yourself detained," he said, as if he could read her mind.
She frowned. "Why would I find myself detained?"
"A prison sentence would be considered a lenient penalty in this country for a foreign national caught in the act of kidnapping a member of the sultan's family," he said, almost casually.
It was undoubtedly suicidal to scowl at this man. But Cleo only thought about that after she did it.
"I didn't kidnap anyone. Your sister ran in front of my car. Should I have flattened her beneath my tires?" She didn't remember herself so much as see that incredulous expression on his face, and she coughed once. Delicately. "I thought I was helping. And also not committing vehicular manslaughter."
The sultan stared at her for a moment, that incredulous expression shifting to something else. Something far more dangerous.
"What do you imagine my sister was running from?" he asked, and it occurred to her that his easy, casual tone was in truth neither of those things.
"Maybe you're marrying her off? To some ally or other?"
But that notion came from novels she'd read, not any particular knowledge about this place or him, and he seemed to know that. Even to expect it, she thought, when his slate-gray eyes darkened.
His magnificent mouth, already close to cruel in its beauty, thinned. He watched her for a moment, his cool gaze like a fire inside her, turning her inside out.
That had to be panic, she told herself, but she knew better.
"What a vivid imagination you have, Miss Churchill."
She didn't want him to know her name. She didn't want him to look at her like that, or at all. She wanted to run.
Except she really didn't. She'd been running for six months. This was the first time she'd wanted to stand still instead. Cleo couldn't let herself think too much about that. It made the heat in her burn hotter.



Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Interview with Avery Flynn-Enemies On Tap

Today it's my pleasure to bring to The Reading Frenzy an author who I LOVE to not only read but also follow everywhere but especially on FaceBook on Fridays when in cahoots with Robin Covington and Kimberly Kincaid they present to all their Fans -  Friday Man Wars! This is something that every discriminating romance lover must experience.
Click HERE to see some Hunks!
So after you wipe the sweat from you brow enjoy our chat!




  • ISBN-13: 9781622667604
  • Publisher: Entangled Publishing, LLC
  • Publication date: 7/14/2014
  • Series: Entangled Indulgence
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
 


Overview


Enemies ? After years away, Miranda Sweet returns to Salvation, Virginia to save her family?s brewery, but her fate is in the hands of her lover-turned-enemy, Logan. What?s a girl to do when the only person who can help her is the man who betrayed her? Lovers ? Logan Martin can?t believe his luck when the woman who smashed his heart to smithereens walks into his bank asking for his help.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Elective Procedures by Merry Jones Blog Tour-Showcase- Partners In Crime Tour

Today is my stop on the Elective Procedures by Merry Jones blog tour showcasing the novel the author and one of my favorite publishers Oceanview, brought to you by Partners In Crime Blog Tours

Be sure and visit all the stops for interviews, reviews and giveaways too!





Elective Procedures

by Merry Jones

on Tour July 2014




Book Details:


Genre: Suspense
Published by: Oceanview
Publication Date: July 1, 2014
Number of Pages: 288
ISBN: 978-1-60809-116-4
Note: Excessive strong language

Purchase Links:



Synopsis:

Elle Harrison has taken a leave of absence to mourn the death of her husband Charlie.
Her friend Becky takes her out to dinner to cheer her up and, on impulse, drags her into a fortune teller's shop. The fortune teller predicts that Elle will travel and meet a new man. She also says that Elle is surrounded by a dark aura that draws the dead to her.
Elle dismissed the predictions as hogwash. But then her friend Jen takes her, Becky and another friend, Susan, to Mexico where she is getting lost cost cosmetic surgery. Elle is attracted to and asked out by Jen's surgeon, Alain DuBois. And Elle finds a woman hanging onto the balcony next to hers by her fingertips. Elle tries to save her and fails, almost dying in the process.
All of the fortune teller's predictions have come true. And, as the week progresses, more of Alain DuBois' patients are gruesomely killed, Jen is attacked, Elle is nearly murdered, and the spirit of her dead husband Charlie keeps appearing to her.
Who is trying to kill Dr. DuBois' patients--And why? Who is trying to murder Elle? Why does she keep seeing Charlie--Is she nuts? Or is his spirit really trying to protect her?
ELECTIVE PROCEDURES makes a week in Mexico into a chilling page turner, full of twists and unexpected developments, as well as a face lift or two.


Read an excerpt:

Don't look down. Don't look down.
I kept repeating those three syllables, a singsong mantra to steady myself and get through time, pushing through seconds and minutes until it would be afterwards and this nightmare would be over.
Don't look down.
But I didn't have to look. I knew what was beneath me. I could picture what was lying six stories down on the concrete beside the kidney shaped swimming pool, near the mouth of the alligator water slide. Under the glowing light of sunrise, I imagined a widening crimson puddle. A clump of arms and legs. A shattered bone protruding through flesh. Tangled hair matted into a cracked skull.
Don't look down, I said again, and I didn't. Instead, I aimed my eyes straight ahead focusing not on the brick wall in front of me, but on the air surrounding my head. I stared into it, straining to see my aura, looking for stains, for splotches of darkness. Was it possible to see your own aura? Was there even such a thing? If there was, I couldn't see it, saw only inches of emptiness between me and the bricks, and, at the periphery of my vision, the railing. For the briefest moment, I had a lapse; I almost turned my head, almost looked down at my hand. Don't look, I chanted. Don't look. Looking would mean moving my head. And if I moved it--if I moved anything at all, I'd disrupt my balance and slip, and then, with a thud, there would be two blobs of bones planted beside the pool.
A pelican dive-bombed past me, the rush of air nearly knocking me over. I held my breath, holding steady. I called out again, hoping someone would wake up, but no one came. So I told myself to stay steady and thing of other things. Other times. I stared at the wall and repeated: Don't look down don't look down don't look down.

Author Bio:

Merry Jones has written the Elle Harrison suspense novels (THE TROUBLE WITH CHARLIE, ELECTIVE PROCEDURES), the Harper Jennings thrillers (SUMMER SESSION, BEHIND THE WALLS, WINTER BREAK, OUTSIDE EDEN, and this fall, IN THE WOODS), the Zoe Hays mysteries (THE NANNY MURDERS, THE RIVER KILLINGS, DEADLY NEIGHBORS, THE BORROWED AND BLUE MURDERS). She has also written humor (including I LOVE HIM, BUT...) and non-fiction (including BIRTHMOTHERS: Women who relinquished babies for adoption tell their stories). Jones taught college creative writing for fifteen years. Her work has been translated into seven languages, and appeared in many magazines, including GLAMOUR. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, The Authors Guild, International Thriller Writers, and The Philadelphia Liars Club. The mother of two grown daughters, she lives outside Philadelphia with her husband.

Catch Up With the Author:



Tour Participants:


Monday, July 21, 2014

**GIVEAWAY** Cover Reveal- Tempting The Player by Kat Latham

Today it's my pleasure to be a part of Kat Latham's COVER REVEAL for her upcoming November 10th release Tempting The Player, book three in the London Legends series.
Plus there's a contest see details below!

Ta Da!!!!


Overview:
Book three of the London Legends
Best friends make the best lovers.
Libby Hart and Matt Ogden are perfect for each other—as friends. They’ve known each other for ages. They act as each other’s plus-ones. They even share custody of a dog. And if there’s always been a little spark between them, so what? It’s never been worth jeopardizing their friendship.
Professional rugby player Matt is fighting for a starter position with the London Legends—and that’s not the only thing he’s fighting. A crippling fear of flying means he’s struggling to get his career off the ground. He has no time for a relationship, even if Libby does make him ache. As an airline pilot, Libby’s looking for a stay-at-home husband so she can have a family without sacrificing her high-flying career. Matt’s certainly not that man.
But just because they don’t have a future together doesn’t mean they can’t have a right now. When Matt asks Libby for help overcoming his fear, they agree to take a vacation from their platonic relationship—whenever they fly together, they can have sex. It’s the perfect way to resolve all that built-up tension. As long as they can avoid getting a little too comfortable…


BUY LINKS:





COVER REVEAL GIVEAWAY
WIN A $15 eGIFT CARD + LONDON LEGENDS TOTE BAG
USE THE RAFFLECOPTER FORM BELOW TO ENTER
GOOD LUCK!!!








MEET THE AUTHOR:
Kat Latham is a California girl who moved to Europe the day after graduating from UCLA, ditching her tank tops for raincoats. She taught English in Prague and worked as an editor in London before she and her British husband moved to the Netherlands. Kat’s other career involves writing and editing for charities, and she’s traveled to Kenya, Ethiopia and India to meet heroic people helping their communities survive disasters. Find out more on her website: katlatham.com.






a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Review of The Book Of Life-book three in the All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness




When A Discovery of Witches first came out in the winter of 2011 the first thing that caught my eye was the fabulous cover  but what was inside was the first fantasy I'd read in a long time that totally captured me and this 579 page book held me in thrall.


Click HERE to see my review





So when in the summer of 2012 I was prepared to not like it as much and I was wrong and was totally blown away in this second book of her trilogy.

Like the first book this one was long 592 pages but the pages just flew and I hardly noticed until I was at the end and wanted more.
And it's not just one thing about this mini-series that captured me but everything, from the historical detail to the fantastical yet recognizable world building. From the over the top characters and we can't forget the utter perfection of her dialogue that made this the incredible page-turner it was.
Click HERE to read my review





So it was pretty much a no brainer that I had to get my hands on the last book in the trilogy and Penguin was kind enough to send me a galley with the stipulation that it not be reviewed until close to release day which almost killed me but I prevailed.

And I was once again willingly drawn right into the pages of this 592 page nail biter, rich and poignant and hopeful and brilliant.
And I'm happy to bring you my review of The Book Of Life






  • ISBN-13: 9780525427803
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 7/15/2014
  • Series: All Souls Trilogy , #3
  • Pages: 592



Series overview:
Diana Bishop always knew she was a witch but until she found an ancient, enchanted text in a university library and met a devastatingly handsome vampire she didn't know both would be her destiny.


The Book of Life:
Diana and Matthew have returned from their successful time-walking, name-dropping journey of the 16th century married and Diana improbably pregnant with twins only to find tragedy and turmoil waiting for them in the 21st. It seems their time away left more unanswered questions about the ancient text they went to the past to investigate. Its now more important than ever to find The Book of Life and discover its secrets because it may be the only thing that will save their own family but it also may hold the secrets of all the earths creatures.

The Book of Life is an amazing end to Deborah Harknesss All Souls Trilogy. She continues to manipulate history and expertly mixes science and fantasy.  Her mastery of words is again evident in her mellifluous narrative showing her skillful blend of prose and conversation and she doesnt ignore the extreme importance of the minutia and the mundane. Her eclectic blend of fantastical, mythical and fanatical characters is supremely portrayed and will not be soon forgotten once the story ends.
The trilogy is intricately interlaced and should be read in order.
Deborah you
ve brought me along as a willing traveler on this incredible journey and I cant wait to see where we travel to next.



MEET THE AUTHOR:
Deborah Harkness
 is the number one New York Times bestselling author of A Discovery of Witches and Shadow of Night. A history professor at the University of Southern California, Harkness has received Fulbright, Guggenheim, and National Humanities Center fellowships. She lives in Los Angeles.

CONNECT WITH DEBORAH- Website- Facebook - Twitter 



Friday, July 18, 2014

Friday Feature Follow #1 plus a cool vid


Hi everyone Happy Friday this is a feature Friday hosted by both Parajunkee of Parajunkee’s View and Alison of Alison Can Read two super book bloggers, and please follow them and all the participants for courtesy's sake.



How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools -- keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them "hi" in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you!



Guest Post Lorelie Brown-Riding The Wave

Today on the blog I'm welcoming author Lorelie Brown who is celebrating the release of her new novel Riding The Wave, first in the Pacific Blue series. And her guest post is on, you got it surfing.

Cowabunga!


  • ISBN-13: 9780451468420
  • Publisher: Signet
  • Publication date: 7/1/2014
  • Series: A Pacific Blue Novel Series , #1
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 336
 



Overview


The gray-green swells of San Sebastian haven’t changed in ten years, but Tanner Wright has. The last thing he expects to find back on his home turf is the love of his life....
With a make-or-break world championship on the line, professional surfer Tanner Wright has come back to the coastal California hometown he left a decade ago, carrying only his board and the painful knowledge of his father’s infidelity.