NEW RELEASE REVIEW – Flesh Into Fire by JA Huss & Johnathan McClain

Title – Flesh Into Fire
Authors – JA Huss & Johnathan McClain
Publication Date – April 17, 2018
Series – Original Sin #3

Payback is owed.

And Maddie Clayton is going to collect. This time Carlos and Logan have gone too far. People are dead, lives have been changed, and she’s had enough. Plus, she’s got the Devil on her side, so when an enemy turns into a friend with an idea of how to take Carlos down, she’s in.

Tyler Morgan has been fighting back his whole adult life. He’s ready for anything when it comes to payback. But endangering Maddie can’t be part of the deal. Unfortunately for him, once Maddie gets an idea in her head, there’s no stopping her.

Her debt has been paid in blood and she wants revenge.

His fight is still there, but now he’s got more at stake than himself.

The end is coming.

But even if they win against Carlos, they can still lose each other.

I hope any reader who dives into Flesh Into Fire has buckled in, because it is one hell of a ride! JA Huss and Johnathan McClain have delivered a book filled with action, suspense, and riveting scenes to keep you on the very tips of your toes. I could not stop turning the pages to see just how everything would play out. The characters are back, stronger than ever, and you definitely won’t want to miss it!

“This is going to end badly…but revenge always has a price. And I’m willing to pay it.”

If I had to describe this third book of the Original Sin series in one word it would be climax. So many different things come to a head and explode in every way imaginable. Maddie has gained so much strength and footing from the devastation of what she has been through. She’s growing out of that timid, just surviving mode, and I felt like she was starting to fight for what she wanted. Furthermore, Tyler became the ultimate protective hero of perfection. I absolutely adored seeing him get worked up and realize where his life was headed. He took control and started to work toward the future he realized was okay to deserve. Both these characters felt so broken in the first couple books, but have really matured and grown. It’s made for such a beautiful transformation over the course of the series, and happens to be one of my favorite things about these books.

“It’s not lost on me that history is nothing more than the passage of time. And that we record time to give us some sense of place in our own stories.”

Whether you’re in the mood for romance, action, or comedy, this book seriously has it all. Flesh Into Fire is a constant barrage of events that will leave your head spinning in a good way. Tyler’s comedic inner monologues paired with the insane chemistry he has with Maddie mixes for a trifecta of indulgence. Once again, JA Huss and Johnathan McClain shine each in their own right, while also elevating each other. It’s definitely fascinating to have a male/female partnership writing a male and female character, making them all the more authentic. I’m already dying to dive into the last book of the series and see how this dynamic duo ties up loose ends. This series has been a rollercoaster ride of events, and I just know that the ending will not disappoint!


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Don’t Miss the Rest of the Series!

Sin With Me (Original Sin #1) 

Read our Review HERE
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Angels Fall (Original Sin #2)

Read our Review HERE
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Passion Rising (Original Sin #4) – Releasing May 8, 2017!

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Two accomplished writers come together to create unforgettable sexy romance. JA Huss is the New York Times bestselling author of 321 and has been on the USA Today bestsellers list eighteen times. Johnathan McClain is a veteran actor and writer whose work, either performed or written, is probably airing on at least one of the channels on your television right now. You can contact them on their website www.hussmcclain.com or find them at their social links below.

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A RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

NEW RELEASE REVIEW & GIVEAWAY – The Pleasure of Panic by JA Huss

Title – The Pleasure of Panic
Author – JA Huss
Publication Date – April 10, 2018
Series – Jordan’s Game #2

From NYT Bestselling Author, JA Huss, comes a new sexy standalone in the Jordan’s Game series. Issy is about to have the night of her life! Her sexual fantasy is about to come true thanks to Jordan Wells and his little fantasy fulfillment business. Or is it?

A new day. A new game. A new girl to (try and) please.
Issy Grey is a control freak. There’s no problem she can’t solve. Issy’s also a successful self-help author, presenter, and life coach. She has every answer, every time you ask for it.

That is… until her BFF butts into her life and signs her up for a sexual fantasy fulfillment game she never asked to play!

Now she can’t turn it off! She can’t quit, because Jordan Wells refuses to admit she’s even a player!

And she can’t get rid of the man assigned to pleasure her with panic, because he’s her new bodyguard!

Just… WTF?

I don’t know how JA Huss continues to come up with mind-blowing, unique stories, but I am so freaking glad that she does! The Pleasure of Panic is the second book in the Jordan’s Game series, though if you understand the premise, it’s not really required to read the first. There were so many twists and turns that I was never able to find my footing, but I mean that only in the best way possible. The characters piqued my interest, but the plot kept me turning the pages as fast as I could. I definitely felt myself needing more and more of this fantastic book.

“Is it a game? Or isn’t it? I can’t tell anymore.”

Issy and Finn were an unexpected couple in that I’m not sure I ever would have paired them together in my head. Issy was the very embodiment of strength and perseverance. She was a survivor who yearned to teach other women how to live to their full potential, and I loved how she got that message across. She used the scars of her past to brighten her future and it instantly endeared me to her, even if she used hiding as her coping mechanism. Our hero Finn was, in many ways, lost and just surviving his day to day; he was stuck in his past and never really moving forward. When they came together, it felt like they offered each other a power to free themselves. They didn’t have to be tied down by chains anymore and I loved how that ended up playing out. It served as an interesting dynamic to watch unfold because while I loved the characters in the beginning, they also grew and changed in such a short amount of time.

“Because hours to us are like years for others. And we’ve spent a lifetime together since we met last night.”

The Pleasure of Panic was a twisted story that I never wanted to end. There was a surprise around every corner that constantly kept me on my toes. If you like your romance dirty with your suspense even dirtier, I definitely suggest checking this novel out. The characters are quirky and fun, the plot is engaging, and the writing is out of this world. There’s a reason Huss is one of my go-to favorite authors, but The Pleasure of Panic definitely took it to a whole new level!


ISSY

The problem with this night is… some of it was fun. I mean, I’m pretty disappointed that this isn’t a game. Unless he’s lying, but I really don’t think he’s lying. He can’t be that good an actor. And we really were down at the Federal Building and I really was locked in an interrogation room, and he and his partner really did question me.

So what the fuck is going on?

And, more importantly, why the fuck is this happening to me? I mean, I was just minding my own business, doing my thing, and then wham. Bullshit everywhere I turn. It’s bad enough that Chella talked Jordan into a game for me. I mean, that’s a little bit humiliating all by itself. But then to be turned down?

“I didn’t ask for any of this,” I say, looking out the window as the world whips by. We’re on I-70 now, heading back towards Denver, and I can just see the glow of city lights peeking over the top of the mountains. There’s no traffic, so we should be back in downtown in like twenty minutes.

“OK,” he says. But it’s one of those OK’s that really means, You’re full of shit.

“I didn’t.”

“Fine. I’m agreeing with you.”

“But your agreement is really just placating me.”

“If you say so, Issy.”

I huff out a breath of air and decide to drop it.

“But you don’t make sense. And you know that. Your background is… well, spotty.”

Yup. It is. But there’s no way he could find out about my past. Like, literally, no way. That girl doesn’t exist anymore. So I don’t agree or disagree with his initial assessment.

“Which means it’s either completely made up or you’ve somehow erased parts of it. So which is it?”

I ignore him.

“I’m gonna figure it out.”

“Why?” I say, turning my body to face him. I’m angry now. “Why do you need to figure it out? Why can’t you just drop the whole fucking thing?”

“Because you’re somehow involved in a terror threat.”

“Says you,” I spit. “That’s probably bullshit. You guys probably made that up to make me vulnerable. To make me cooperate. And it’s not gonna work.”

“We didn’t make it up.” He laughs. “This is the fucking FBI, Issy. We’ve got better things to do than play sex games with you.”

“Could you just shut up?”

“Fine,” he says, pressing a button on the navigation panel. Music starts to play, something beat-y, and hypnotic, and dark, which does nothing for my already dark mood. But he stays silent all the way into downtown. All the way to my house.

I open the door as soon as the car stops, just trying to get away from him as quickly as possible, but then he shuts the car off.

“No,” I say, shaking my head, one leg already out the door. “No, you’re not coming in.”

“Fine,” he says, shrugging. “But I’m not leaving either.”

I get out, slam the door, walk up to my house, keys already in hand, open the door, slam it closed behind me, and flick on the light.

And then I do most of that backwards. I open the door back up, slam it behind me, skip down the porch stairs, run down the walkway, and open the car door back up.

“Forget something?” he asks, while texting on his phone.

“Someone was in my house.”

He stops texting. “What?”

“It’s ransacked, Finn!” I grab my hair with frustration. “Someone went through my house!”

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Don’t Miss the Upcoming Books in the Series!

The Boyfriend Experience (Jordan’s Game #3) – Releasing May 30, 2018!

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JA Huss

JA Huss is the USA Today bestselling author of more than twenty romances. She likes stories about family, loyalty, and extraordinary characters who struggle with basic human emotions while dealing with bigger than life problems. JA loves writing heroes who make you swoon, heroines who makes you jealous, and the perfect Happily Ever After ending.

You can chat with her on Facebook (www.facebook.com/AuthorJAHuss), Twitter (@jahuss), and her blog, New Adult Addiction (www.jahuss.com).

If you’re interested in getting your hands on an advanced release copy of her upcoming books, sneak peek teasers, or information on her upcoming personal appearances, you can join her newsletter list (http://eepurl.com/JVhAr) and get those details delivered right to your inbox.

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A RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

AUTHOR INTERVIEW WITH NINA LEVINE & VIP EXCLUSIVE

We’re thrilled to introduce Nina Levine’s new monthly magazine-style publication exclusive to her VIP subscribers:

ESCAPE WITH AN ALPHA
Issue One out on April 9th

Monthly Episodes of:
The Jett & Presley Diaries (from Nina’s rocker romance BE THE ONE)
Winter & Birdie (a brand new SYDNEY STORM MC couple)

Interviews with Authors & Bloggers
Storm MC Bonus Chapters
News and Other Fun Stuff

Sign Up for Nina’s VIP EMAIL LIST

Welcome to some of Nina Levine’s #LifeIsMessy flash fiction. She writes these pieces when she’s struggling for words or trying to warm up her writing brain and shares them in her Facebook reader group. Sometimes the characters are familiar, other times they’re brand new. These pieces are just for fun, but you never know when one will turn into something more. To celebrate the launch of ESCAPE WITH AN ALPHA, Nina has written us an exclusive #LifeIsMessy bonus scene featuring Hyde and Monroe from Hyde’s Absolution!

Hyde

My gaze landed on Monroe’s ass the minute I stepped through the front door of her tattoo parlour.

Fuck.

Not a productive way to start the afternoon. Not when I had shit to get back to for King after I fixed her plumbing problem.

She straightened and turned at the sound of the bell chiming as I entered. A smile lit her face as she came my way. I’d never grow tired of that smile. Or those lips. “I’m going to make this worth your while tonight.” Her hands came straight to my chest before sliding down my body to my jeans. “Or maybe now. My next appointment isn’t for another hour, and Fox won’t be in until then, so we’ve got some time to kill.”

I clamped my hand over hers to slow her down. The last fucking thing I needed was her hand around my dick. “It’ll have to wait till tonight, Red. King needs me out on a job after this.”

She pouted. “He always ruins my fun. I can be quick.”

My mouth curled up in amusement. “You don’t know the meaning of a quick fuck.”

“I’m a woman of many talents, tiger,” she said with a sexy grin, her fingers working my belt. “I just haven’t chosen to bless you with a quick fuck yet.”

“Fuck,” I muttered, grabbing her hand again. “I’m just trying to get through the fucking day here, Roe. King’s busting my ass—I’m looking at about six straight hours of work to get through everything he wants done—so as much as sinking my dick in that sweet pussy of yours sounds like the best offer I’ve had all day, I don’t have time for it.”

She cocked her head. “You’ve had other offers today?”

Monroe was fucking lethal when it came to my restraint. When she stood in front of me dressed to kill like she was today, with sexy shit falling out of her mouth, there was no way I could resist her.

Wrapping my hand around her arm, I dragged her to the office. Kicking the door closed behind us, I pushed her up against it and claimed the kiss I needed more than anything. Being balls deep inside Monroe was a favourite place of mine to be, but more than that, I craved the connection to her that kissing gave me.

She looped her arms around my neck as she kissed me back, and when I finally let her lips go, she sighed. “I need to keep an eye out for customers.”

I reached for the bottom of her dress. “You have a bell on the front door.”

“Sometimes it doesn’t work. We need to open this door.”

I stopped what I was doing and met her gaze. “You want me to fuck you, Red? Or you wanna stand here and argue about the fucking door?”

“I want you to fuck me. With the door open.”

“Every surface of this office is covered with shit. It’s a fucking mess in here. Where do you suggest I fuck you?” There wasn’t even a spare wall to slam her up against. If she had a better option, I was all fucking ears, but from where I stood, this was the only place.

The heat in her eyes cooled, and she took a step away from me. “There’s plenty of places. You’re just being an ass now because of last night.”

I dropped my head for a moment and blew out a frustrated breath. She’d referenced the fight we’d had last night, which was becoming a recurring argument between us. The mess Monroe created in our bathroom with her makeup was in complete contrast to the rest of our home, which she kept obsessively clean. And I wasn’t a fan of it. Having to move shit all the time irritated the fuck out of me. After we’d argued over it last night, she’d hinted that I should sleep on the fucking couch, which I’d ignored. No fucking way was I going a night without her.

Looking back up, I said, “Not everything is about something else, Monroe. This has nothing to do with your mess at home.”

Her eyes widened. “I’ve told you—that’s not a mess! It’s—”

Jesus, this was the last thing I had time for today. I opened the door so I could go fix her plumbing and then get back to work. “I’m not getting into another fight with you about it.”

“What you like to call a mess in our bathroom is not a mess. I need to see all my makeup so I know what my options are. And don’t you walk away from me while we’re discussing something. You know I hate that.”

I was three steps out of her office, but halted my progress. She had a point—we both hated being walked away from. Turning back to face her, I raked my fingers through my hair and said, “I can’t win here, no matter what I say. And I don’t want a repeat of last night where you wouldn’t let me touch you. So let’s not get into this.”

“If we don’t get into it, we’re never going to settle it. I just want you to understand why I have all my stuff spread out in the bathroom.”

“I will never understand that. It makes no sense to me. Organise it into some containers or put it in the cupboards.”

“Ugh, men! You drive me crazy some days.”

“The feeling’s fucking mutual. Now, can I get to work so we can both go back to our day?”

She stared at me for a long few moments before saying, “Fine. But just so you know, I’m already feeling like a repeat of last night might happen again, so feel free to take your time getting all your work done this afternoon.”

“Fucking hell, Monroe,” I muttered as I closed the distance between us. Sliding my arm around her waist, I pulled her hard against my body. “I love you, but you don’t just drive me crazy some days—you fucking drive me to distraction. I can’t get enough of you, even when you’re arguing with me. Just so you know, I’ll be getting through that work as fast as fucking possible and then I’ll be coming home to finish what you started here. I don’t give a flying fuck if I break some of your shit, I’ll be clearing some space in our bathroom to fuck you on that vanity, exactly how you like it. And then I’m going to have you in the shower with all your toys. So go home after work and get ready for that, because there’s no fucking way it’s not happening.”

Heat flared in her eyes again. “Wait, you’re worried about breaking my stuff?”

“Yeah. Why do you fucking think I want that shit packed up?”

A smile spread out across her face and her body softened against mine. “Well why didn’t you say that?”

I’d never fucking understand women.

Fucking never.

“Fuck, Red, get your ass back in that office. No fucking way can I wait until tonight to have you.”

She continued smiling. “Sometimes you say the exact right thing, tiger.” And with that, she finally did what I wanted her to do.

PoP: We’re big fans of biker book boyfriends which is how we discovered your novels. What drew you to writing MC romance?

Nina: I was writing Madison’s story and she was the daughter of the MC president and J was just supposed to be a biker friend, but the minute he showed up on the page, the chemistry between them took over and I realised I had to write a story about them. Turned out, I loved writing bikers because they were completely alpha, dirty, bossy and could pretty much say and do anything that was over the top. I also loved being able to explore the darker side of life. And Sons of Anarchy was one of my favourite TV shows, so I had awesome inspiration!

PoP: You’ve written a lot of fierce, sexy, and unforgettable couples. If you had to choose, which couple is your favorite and why?

Nina: This question is so hard to answer!! I have a few favourites, but if I had to choose one couple, it would be Nitro & Tatum. I loved that they were both so hardened by life and didn’t open up easily. They both had to work to get the other to allow them in, and they both had to come to terms with themselves and make some big changes to grow. I know all my couples do this, but it felt like Nitro & Tatum fought this the most. And that’s what I love about writing – watching that struggle to grow and make changes. It’s life, and we’re all flawed and make mistakes and either learn from them or stay stuck. I love exploring that, and I’m finding that my writing is evolving more and more into digging deeper into human flaws and creating imperfect characters who sometimes are a struggle to like.

PoP: Your Storm MC and Sydney Storm MC series are thrilling, hot, and full of surprises and yet each novel also stands apart in its own way. Which book was the easiest to write? Which was the hardest?

Nina: Havoc was the easiest to write. He and Carla just fell onto the page. I know this may be hard to believe 😉 but up until I wrote the first half of Havoc (which was just after I wrote Revive), I’d kind of censored my bikers. When they said or did something that I thought may have stretched the dirtiness a little too far, I pulled them back. I deleted a lot of dirty stuff and toned it down. But with Havoc, I just let him and Carla be as dirty as they wanted. And that was fun! Carla was especially fun to write because of the fact I didn’t censor her. My hardest book to write has hands down been King’s book (and it’s still not finished because of this!). It’s no secret that I’ve struggled with my writing since my mother passed away, but I’m doing much better with that now. However, I’m still finding King’s Wrath hard to write because of all the intricate plots I’ve got going on. Weaving in his life story plus all the club issues that have been going on for the entire series has been much harder than I ever anticipated. I thought I may struggle with King himself (getting him exactly right) but that hasn’t been a problem at all. He’s been in my head since 2014 and he is the character of mine who I know the best. I pretty much know him inside out and I don’t ever struggle with knowing how he would react to a certain situation, so he just falls onto the page. It’s just everything else going on that is making this a difficult book to write. I’ve also had to write his woman a few times now to get her right. I played with writing the book entirely in his POV also, but decided for the story to work best I wanted her POV in there too. So yeah, this book has been a journey! I’m aiming to finish writing his first book soon! And fingers crossed his second book flows much easier.

PoP: You seem to enjoy writing complicated, brooding alphas with filthy minds and even filthier mouths. Were you always comfortable getting down and dirty with your book boyfriends or was it something you had to grow into?

Nina: LOL at the filthy. Yes, I love writing that! I remember writing the first sex scene between J & Madison and blushing while I wrote it. Afterwards, I was like “huh, that was actually fun!”. By the time Nash’s book came, I was completely good with writing the filthy side of my men.

PoP: When you first hit publish on Storm, did you ever imagine you’d have two series worth of deliciously dirty bikers out in the world? What did you originally have in mind with J, Madison, and the rest of the Storm MC crew?

Nina: I had no idea that this is where I would be now! I didn’t plan that first series in the beginning. I simply wrote Storm and put it out there and went with the flow. That book did extremely well and readers were excited for a second book, so I wrote Scott’s book. I wasn’t sure what possessed me to say I’d write his next because in Storm he was a complete ass lol! I didn’t even really like him in that first book. But I ended up loving writing his story and fell in love with his character. However, the night before I was to publish his book, my friend called me up and told me that she hated him. She’d read his book and told me he was a complete dick and the kind of guy that never grows up. I appreciated her honest feedback but was then completely confused about how to proceed. I mean, it was too late then to change him when I had to publish the book the next day. And besides that, I actually personally loved his character. So I went with my gut and I hit publish the next day. I felt so sick over the whole thing and hadn’t heard back from any of the bloggers reading the book, so I closed my computer and took my daughter out for dinner and told her that my publishing career was most likely over. LOL! So it turned out I was right to trust myself on that one because that book hit the USA Today Bestseller list and Scott Cole is one of the series favourites.

After the success of Fierce, I decided I should get serious about planning out the rest of the series. Back then, I used to fly by the seat of my pants. These days, I’m much more organised with plans for series and mapping them out in advance.

PoP: Who was your favorite character to write and what was it like being inside their head? Did they make you laugh out loud? Blush profusely? Curse the day they popped into your head?

Nina: I have two favourites – King from the Storm MC series and Charlize from Risk. I love being inside King’s head because he’s so different to me in pretty much every way. He’s decisive, confident in his decisions, gives no fucks what anyone thinks, and he doesn’t get bogged down in details. He’s a make-it-happen man. And I have to be honest, I love writing his violent side. Not sure what that says about me?! Writing him in King’s Wrath, though, has shown me his vulnerable side and honestly, I swoon over that side of him. Being in his head for this book has made so many of his actions in past books so much more understandable. I am fascinated by my writing process and how I can have no understanding of why a character says or does something until much later in the book or even in the series. And then it’s like an aha moment where it all becomes clear. A lot of that has happened while writing King! And Charlize – she was so much fun to write because of her hilarious inner thoughts and funny moments. That story was roughly planned, but I had no idea of how the characters would show up on the page because I didn’t do any planning for their personality types or anything like that. I simply sat down and decided I needed to think of a funny and mortifying situation a woman could find herself in and then write that to open the book. And Charlize just took off from there. I love her because I feel like she has so many traits that most women can relate to.

PoP: In addition to your MC series, you’ve written a rocker and friends to lovers romance. What other tropes do you hope to tackle in your writing career?

Nina: I have plans for so many! There will be the accidental pregnancy book featuring Avery and Tyler from Steal My Breath. I’ve got the billionaire trope with Ashton Scott and the office romance/billionaire trope with Risk (I’ve still got the second book in this duet to write and am really looking forward to that!). I have a book I started writing way before Storm that I want to finish – it features a married couple on the rocks. It was inspired by Pink’s album The Truth About Love. I’ve got the opposites attract novella I wrote about a laid back tattoo artist who falls for an uptight career girl, titled Her Kind of Crazy. I’ll be expanding that book and releasing it this year. Other than those, I’d love to write a ‘woke up married in Vegas’ book, a secret baby book, maybe a jilted bride book, and a marriage of convenience book. I’d also really love to write a small town romance series, and it would definitely need to have a story about a woman who returns to the small town she grew up in and finds love with her first love again *sigh*. Oh, and I’d love to dedicate a whole series of standalones to a second chance romance series. I adore second chance romance!

PoP: How do you shape your characters? Are they reflections of the people you have encountered or do you write them the way they speak to you?

Nina: I wouldn’t say they are planned as reflections of the people I encounter, but sometimes I find myself writing a character who I later realise was probably influenced by someone I’ve met. Having said that, there are a few characters I’ve written who have gone through similar experiences as mine, so they’ve been partly shaped by some of the people I’ve known. Generally when I’m planning out a novel and the main characters, I start with their wound and go from there. Everything else about them has to fit into character with that.

PoP: What do you do to help writer’s block should you encounter it?

Nina: Oh man, I’ve definitely suffered over the last year with this. I had to acknowledge that my self care was lacking and that I had worked myself into burnout. Grief on top of that only made it worse, and then physical injury forced me to take time off and figure it all out. I had to go back to basics with my self care and improve my sleep, eating and movement. Regular massages and physiotherapy helped too. And then just getting out and living life rather than working all the time was also key for me. Girls weekends away are one of my favourite things to do. Taking time away from social media is another key thing, although I do struggle with this when a lot of my work is on social media. And trying to set aside time first thing in the morning for writing is beneficial for me because I tend to write much better then. And lastly, when the words aren’t coming on the main book I’m writing, I’ve found that working on side projects really helps my creativity flow. So I’ve been slowly working away on some fun side projects the last couple of months and am excited for where they will lead!       

PoP: If you were to pitch your books to new readers in one sentence, what would it be?

Nina: If you don’t love romances with dirty-talking alphas, you won’t love my books 😉 

— Nina Levine asks Prisoners of Print —

Nina: How did the two of you meet and decide to blog together?

PoP: We met when we were 14 years old, working at the public library across the street from our high school reshelving books. Candy was singing a highly inappropriate song on the opposite side of the shelf, and the rest is history. After graduation, Becca went to college hundreds of miles away, but we never lost touch despite life continuing to keep us geographically separate. A few years ago, while messaging about books we’d recently read, we came up with the idea to start a book blog. We thought it would be a fun way to reconnect and share something we love with one another. Prisoners of Print was born, and here we are over four years later.

Nina: I love this!! Love that you’ve been friends for so long and share a love of books! 

What is your absolute favourite thing about blogging?

PoP: Hands down, the relationships we have cultivated. Blogging has allowed us to connect with authors, other bloggers, and fellow readers in ways we could never have imagined. What starts out as a shared love for the written word evolves into something so much more. It’s kind of incredible when messages about your swoon-worthy book boyfriend turn into talking about real life, supporting one another through the difficult times, sharing in each other’s joy, and making plans to one day meet up. We love that blogging has allowed us to connect with so many different people from around the world in ways we would never have been able to otherwise. We truly cherish the genuine friendships we’ve made in the book world.

Nina: I agree that the messages that start off being about book boyfriends and turn into beautiful friendships are a special and wonderful part of this community. I’ve definitely treasured our chats, Becca. You’ve been there for me at times I needed someone to chat with and that has meant so much to me.

I’d love to know each of your top 3 favourite books! Which books do you still think about to this day and wish you could read all over again?

B: Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. Tucker
, Rule by Jay Crownover
, and The Coincidence series by Jessica Sorensen

C: The Edge of Never series by J.A. Redmerski
, From Sand and Ash by Amy Harmon
, and Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover

Nina: Some amazing books here. I also loved Rule, Ten Tiny Breaths and The Edge of Never! Oh and I’m pretty sure I’ve read the first Coincidence book by Jessica Sorenson and loved it too.

Last 5 star read for each of you?

B: Recovered by Jay Crownover

C: The Birthday List by Devney Perry

Nina: Paperback or ebook? Why?

PoP: We can really go with either one, but if we had to choose, we would say that it would be eBooks. We like to have the highlight ability so that all our favorite quotes or things that we can relate to are always at our fingertips. Plus, eBooks allow for being able to carry more than one around at all times 😉

Nina: I love being able to highlight my fave parts in ebooks too, but I still love reading paperbacks. I tend to buy fiction in ebook form and non-fiction in paperback (except when I reallyyyyy can’t wait for the paperback to be delivered!).

One of my fave tropes is the ‘married in Vegas’ trope. I pretty much devour any movie or book I stumble across with that storyline! What is the one trope for each of you that you can’t go past?

B: I adore a good sibling’s best friend romance. There’s something about quietly wanting someone forever and having them in your life but always out of reach that just tugs on my heartstrings. I can’t help but get caught up in all of the delicious tension and inevitable angst. Plus, that moment when things finally click is always kind of magical! Happily ever afters carved out of a lifetime of longing and barely maintained patience tend to be so much sweeter, too.

C: I’m a sucker for a second chance at love. We all make mistakes in life and sometimes those errors lead to losing something we didn’t know we wanted – especially in the form of love. There’s something so special about witnessing that redemption, the growth, and the overcoming of obstacles that seemed impossible at one point in time.

Nina: Next book on your TBR?

B: Brooklynaire by Sarina Bowen

C: The Pleasure of Panic by JA Huss

Nina: When I’m ready to settle in and read a book, I love to do that either on the couch, the sunbed or in bed. And I like to set myself up with a cup of tea and chocolate! Where do you prefer to read, and what are your reading must-haves?

B: I’m pretty content to read anywhere there’s quiet and a glass of wine or cup of coffee. However, most of my reading happens in bed at the end of the night cuddled up to my cat. If there’s a big blanket, fuzzy socks, and something yummy to sip on I’m a happy girl.

C: In an ideal world, I’d be in a hammock by the water somewhere. Since that’s rarely possible for me, my favorite place is curled up in bed at night. My husband and daughter are asleep and the world is quiet. My puppy curls up next to me and I escape to a new world…it’s perfection every time.

Nina: I love snuggling under a big blanket too, Becca! And reading by the water is a fave place of mine too, Candy!

I detest spoilers!! Do you girls like them?? If you love them, do you actually search them out?

PoP: Absolutely not! We both love the thrill of going into a book and being taken on every turn for ourselves. There’s something about experiencing every raw emotion and a delicious anticipation that leaves us loving a book that much more. However, that’s not to say that sometimes a little trigger warning isn’t helpful when it’s necessary.

Nina: How does blogging fit in with the rest of your life? How much time do you spend on blogging each week?

PoP: Even after almost four years of doing this, we’re constantly evolving as bloggers. Maintaining a balance between work, family, and the vortex of social media is difficult, but we’ve managed to become pretty efficient and organized in how we tackle the everyday aspects of our blog. We tend to meet up online after dinner to go over scheduling for the next day, dedicating a couple of hours to getting things taken care of so we can focus on our lives offline, the social aspects of blogging, and whatever else we have going on at the moment.

USA Today Bestselling Author Nina Levine is an Aussie author who writes alphas with a side of dirty and sassy women who don’t hand their hearts over easily.

When she’s not creating with words you’ll find her planning her next getaway, visiting somewhere new in the world, having a long conversation over coffee and cake with a friend, creating with paper or curled up with a good book and chocolate.

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REVIEW TOUR – The Birthday List by Devney Perry

Title – The Birthday List
Author – Devney Perry
Publication Date – April 3, 2018

Happily married to her college sweetheart, Poppy lived a blessed life with the husband of her dreams. Then everything changed. She is no longer a wife. She is no longer the envy of her single friends. Now, people look at her with pity as they whisper a single word behind her back.

Widow.

Years after her husband’s tragic death, years of pain and sorrow and wishing for the life she’ll never get back, Poppy decides to finish Jamie’s birthday list. She’ll do the things he wanted to most. Because maybe, just maybe, if she can complete his list, she can start to live again.

Poppy expects going through the birthday list will be hard. She expects it to hurt. But what she doesn’t expect is Cole. Could the man who delivered the news of her husband’s death and shattered her heart be the one to help her put it back together again?

This is the first book I’ve picked up by Devney Perry, but I can say with absolute certainty that it won’t be the last. I knew going into The Birthday List that it would be emotional at times, especially given the blurb, but I never could have imagined the unforgettable journey that Perry would take me on. The writing was mesmerizing, the characters were troubled yet real, and the plot was done in a way that I haven’t previously encountered. Altogether, it delivered a magical read that I never wanted to end.

“Because closure was the one thing she craved as much as love. She was desperate for someone to tell her it was okay to start living again.”

After her husband passed away in a tragic accident, Poppy decided that she needed to fulfill his birthday list. I’m not sure where the author came up with these items to do, but I loved the diversity of them. Some were serious, others were silly; there were items for himself, and some for the love of his life. It helped me to fall in love with his character even though we never really met him. Not only did we see Jamie through Poppy’s eyes, but readers were able to get a real sense of who he was through the things he wanted to accomplish in his life. Furthermore, it instantly likened me to Poppy because I could sense how down to earth and authentic she was. However, what would a romance novel be without a current day hero to fall in love with? Let me just say, Cole is the man that every girl dreams of. He was patient, understanding, and impossible not to root for. He was so gentle in his approach to Poppy and their friendship but still completely dedicated and sure of what he wanted. Together, these two felt so effortless and they just made sense. I hardcore swooned and felt my heart beating out of my chest as their relationship progressed.

“Maybe I didn’t have to be strong enough to banish the pain away all by myself. Maybe being strong meant learning to lean on those who would take some of the pain away. Like the man at my side.”

While the characters were fantastic, I truly believe that it was Devney Perry’s writing that kept me aching for more. She has a magical quality to her storytelling ability that left me feeling like I was falling down a rabbit hole, but only in the best sense of the term. I’ve heard lots of buzz around this author’s previous books, and I’m now kicking myself for not listening sooner. The Birthday List left me with all the feels and I have no doubt that other readers will put it down feeling the same! If you’re looking for a book that delivers, then you should definitely dive into this one…you won’t regret the epic journey it will take you on!


Turning to the door, I smiled, ready to greet my late-evening customer, but faltered as the door closed behind him.

Cole Goodman was walking my way.

My belly dipped as I took him in. His aviator sunglasses were perched on top of his chocolate-brown hair. A black polo stretched across his broad shoulders and pulled tight across his muscled arms. His pale-blue jeans molded to his Herculean thighs before draping down to his black, square-toed boots. The leather belt on Cole’s trim waist held both a shining badge and a holstered gun.

Cole smiled and locked his light-green eyes on mine as he crossed the room.

His straight, white teeth made my breath hitch—something that had happened last night more times than I wanted to admit.

Molly, who had turned around from her seat to greet our customer, spun around so her back was to Cole. Her cheeks flushed as she whispered, “Wow.”

Wow was right.

Cole Goodman was—simply put—gorgeous.

He could give a woman a speeding ticket and get a thank-you in return. He inspired women to attempt push-ups in a karate class just for the chance to watch him sweat through his gi. Cole made grown women blush like teenagers and giggle in corners, like those girls at the dojo last night.

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Devney is the USA Today bestselling author of the Jamison Valley series. She lives in Montana with her husband and two children. After working in the technology industry for nearly a decade, she abandoned conference calls and project schedules to enjoy a slower pace at home with her kids. She loves reading and, after consuming hundreds of books, decided to share her own stories. Devney loves hearing from readers! Connect with her on social media.

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BLOG TOUR & GIVEAWAY – Recovered by Jay Crownover

Title: Recovered
Author: Jay Crownover
Release Date: March 27, 2018

It was hate at first sight……

Affton
I hated Cable James McCaffrey.
He was entitled, spoiled, a user…and an addict.
He was out of control and didn’t bother trying to hide it.
He had everything anyone could want but still seemed miserable and lost.
Every move he made, every mistake he stumbled his way through, rubbed me the wrong way. However, I couldn’t stop myself from trying to save him from himself when no one else would. In the sweltering heat of the summer, Cable taught me that having it all means nothing if you can’t have the one thing you want more than anything else.

Cable
I was obsessed with Affton Reed.
She was rigid, uptight, and no fun. There was something about her innate goodness that called to me.
She acted like she was above all the normal faults and failures that clung to the rest of us like the scent of smoke after a fire.
I was infatuated with her, but that didn’t stop me from acting like she didn’t exist.
In the scorching heat of summer, Affton taught me that there is always a way back from the brink of despair. She showed me that the trick to having it all was realizing that it was already there, in my hands. All I had to do was hold onto it.

The road to recovery is full of twists and turns no matter who is in the driver’s seat.

An unforgettable journey of forgiveness and healing, Jay Crownover has truly outdone herself with Recovered. Cable and Affton’s story is steeped in tragedy, regret, and loss, yet there is something about their inimitable connection and undeniable chemistry that promises to mend even the most battered of hearts. Jay Crownover does not disappoint, delivering a journey that shatters before it soothes. Affton and Cable are as unlikely as they are meant for each other, and I completely lost myself in their painful honesty, easy banter, incendiary attraction, and deep understanding of one another’s pain.

“Well . . . I’m going to ruin you, and you . . . you’re going to do your best to save me.”

Cable is nothing you’d expect in a hero and yet somehow by the end of the book, I couldn’t see him as anything else. I was immediately enchanted by Cable’s charm, but it was his flaws that completely stole my heart. Haunted, angry, and desperately lost, Cable was challenged (and challenging in his own right) at every turn. As Affton shined her light on his darkness, a vulnerable, broken boy emerged with the inner strength to overcome his demons. I adored the way Jay Crownover so completely unraveled this character and the care with which she pieced him back together. Heart wrenching, gritty, and real, Cable’s personal transformation was wholly satisfying.

“We ignited. We went up in flames. We burned and singed each other over and over again.”

There should be more heroines like Affton. This quiet, contemplative girl blew me away as she repeatedly proved to be the force of nature capable of knocking Cable off his feet. Affton had plenty of her own insecurities and fears, and it was these qualities that made her so easy to relate to and root for. Affton experienced the world with a genuine understanding of life’s capacity for pain and disappointment and yet she held out hope that tomorrow would be better. The walls Affton built crumbled in Cable’s presence, and I enjoyed every moment of this character’s unmasking. Jay Crownover opened Affton up slowly and purposefully, revealing a woman with the power to make a difference.

“I thought hating Cable James McCaffrey was overwhelming. Hating him had nothing on loving him.”

Recovered wasn’t as dark as I had imagined. Jay Crownover effortlessly balanced the gritty, hard truth of addiction with plenty of tender, hopeful, sexy and unexpectedly sweet moments. The author’s personal connection to Affton and Cable’s journey was undeniable, made obvious by the overwhelming raw emotion and genuine vulnerability of this story. I didn’t just read this one; I devoured it. Affton’s cracked heart and kind soul made her the perfect match for Cable’s rough and damaged bad boy persona. Together, these characters made magic. Recovered is Jay Crownover at her absolute best and unquestionably one of my favorite books this year!



5++ Stars!!!

CABLE

I knew I was a mess.

Unhinged and hanging on the precipice of becoming someone who was beyond any kind of redemption. I teetered on the brink of making bad choices every moment I was awake, but somehow, some way, I always managed to keep myself from going completely over. It was the look in Affton’s eyes when I came out of my epic freak-out that had me keep one foot on the line and one foot behind it. There was genuine concern for me in those pretty, almost purple eyes. There was worry and want she tried to hide in that gaze, as well. She tried to hate me, but she was too good of a person, too compassionate and empathetic to follow through on those emotions. She cared, and it scared the holy fuck out of me.

I had no clue what to do with these new feelings. I was sure I didn’t want her to give a crap about me. I had no idea how to navigate genuine, sincere compassion. I was inexperienced in dealing with emotion that wasn’t leveraged or manipulated. I was unsettled and acutely aware of her.

Every breath she took, I swore I could hear.

Every time she blinked, those eyes that saw far too much and witnessed as I ducked and dodged her. I watched them grow dark blue, blooming like a bruise as she tried to hide the way my evasion hurt her.

Every time I sidestepped and ignored her, I swore I could feel the way her blood billed, and her aggravation made her warm from head to toe. I got hard at the way she flushed a pretty pink when I pissed her off, but I wasn’t going out of my way to tell her that. I wasn’t going out of my way to tell her anything.

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Jay Crownover is the international and multiple New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Marked Men Series, The Saints of Denver Series, the Point Series, the Breaking Point Series, and the Getaway Series. Her books can be found translated in many different languages all around the world. She is a tattooed, crazy haired Colorado native who lives at the base of the Rockies with her awesome dogs. This is where she can frequently be found enjoying a cold beer and Taco Tuesdays. Jay is a self-declared music snob and outspoken book lover who is always looking for her next adventure, between the pages and on the road.

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RELEASE BLITZ & GIVEAWAY – Angels Fall by JA Huss

Title – Angels Fall
Authors – JA Huss & Johnathan McClain
Publication Date – March 27, 2018
Series – Original Sin #2

Sometimes angels fall.

Maddie doesn’t really owe drug lord, Carlos Castillo, money. So she hadn’t taken his threats seriously. Until now. He wants it, whether she owes it or not. And if she doesn’t have it in six weeks he’s gonna take her as payment instead.

Tyler would save the world if he could. That’s a fight that lasts forever. And if there’s one thing he’s good at, it’s fighting. So if Maddie thinks she’s gonna deal with an insane drug lord on her own, she’s crazier than he is.

She’s got a debt she can’t pay. He’s got more money than he needs.
She’s not gonna fall for his charm. He’s gonna make sure that happens.

They’re destined to be together. Even if Maddie doesn’t know it yet.
Sometimes your soul mate isn’t who you’d choose, it’s who you need.

Good thing you don’t get to choose.

Holy shit – what did I just read!? And I mean that in the absolute best way possible! JA Huss and Johnathan McClain packed a serious punch in Angels Fall and I’m still reeling from the effects. Maddie and Tyler’s story had everything I look for in a good book; there was some steamy romance, intriguing twists, and trials that ultimately lead to unforgettable moments.

“It’s a soft kiss. A touching kiss. A forgiving kiss. And when we break apart, we are more together than ever.”

Tyler was great in Sin With Me, but he shone even brighter in this second novel of the series. He accepted his mistakes and really made an effort to fix things. I loved seeing that maturity and realization that he needed to get out of his own head. Furthermore, his inner monologues added such a dose of humor and lightheartedness to the novel, even in moments of distress. As a reader, I couldn’t help but giggle relentlessly and look forward to the chapters from his point of view. Furthermore, my admiration really grew for Maddie as well. She started to question her circumstances and open her eyes to the world around her. In many ways, I also think she developed more of a spine and started to really value her worth. It felt like she was morphing into a woman who knew what she wanted and would do anything to get it, which definitely makes me anxious for more!

“Me, battered and bloodied but still here. Her, without visible scars, but no less punctured and bruised. And also still here.”

As the two of these characters transformed as individuals, they also grew as a couple and it made me beyond giddy. I’m usually not one to read books from two different authors, but McClain and Huss are seamless in their transitions. There are two distinct voices, yet so complementary that it never feels like a disjointed read. With unforgettable characters, flawless writing, and a gasp-inducing ending that will leave you drooling for more, Angels Fall hit the trifecta of perfection. I can’t wait to see what happens next!


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Sin With Me (Original Sin #1) 

Read our Review HERE
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Flesh Into Fire (Original Sin #3)

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Passion Rising (Original Sin #4) – Releasing May 8, 2017!

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Two accomplished writers come together to create unforgettable sexy romance. JA Huss is the New York Times bestselling author of 321 and has been on the USA Today bestsellers list eighteen times. Johnathan McClain is a veteran actor and writer whose work, either performed or written, is probably airing on at least one of the channels on your television right now. You can contact them on their website www.hussmcclain.com or find them at their social links below.

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RELEASE DAY REVIEW – Secrets of Spring by Julie Solano & Tracy Justice

Title – Secrets of Spring
Authors – Julie Solano & Tracy Justice
Publication Date – March 26, 2018
Series – Seasons of Jefferson #3

Secrets! They’re all I’ve ever known. Since the night I witnessed the unthinkable, I’ve been forced to live with a hidden identity. For our safety, we were tucked away in a rural, mountain community in Northern California. For me, the tradeoff was bitter. Friendships were torn apart. One young playmate would never be seen again and the other would become a forbidden acquaintance.

As the years passed, our new lives were rebuilt from the ashes of destruction we’d left behind. For most of my adolescence, my only safe outlets were school and sports. They were where I spent all my time. I became a scholar student and an all-around athlete who surrounded myself with a tiny circle of my most trusted friends. Friends who would make living in Jefferson County adventurous, exciting, and unforgettable.

Time passed and my attention shifted beyond my small circle to the All-American, baseball star, Ty Connelly. He caught my eye and made me forget who I used to be. My guard dropped. I became careless, defying the rules set in place for my family’s safety. To me, he was worth the risk. He was the one person who had the power to turn my nightmares into dreams. Dreams of a future where living was possible again and secrets could be forgotten. Or could they? Find out in the exciting conclusion of the Seasons of Jefferson trilogy, Secrets of Spring.

I’ve literally waited years for this book, and oh man did it deliver! Secrets of Spring was mysterious and intriguing, while still staying absolutely true to the navigation of young adulthood. Julie Solano and Tracy Justice raised awareness about peer pressure and social media outreach wrapped in a beautiful bow of romance, friendship, and the bonds we create in our everyday lives.

We see glimpses of the aftermath of Dead of Winter from everyone, but Secrets of Spring is truly Jenna’s journey, and it’s definitely a wild ride. I never could have imagined the background that her and her family endured which left me taken by surprise on more than one occasion. I loved getting to see the world through her innocent eyes and watching her navigate the weight of her decisions. Furthermore, these two authors have a knack for introducing a sense of realness into their books, and they did this again in a very personal way. Jenna has been told that she can’t have any social media, yet ends up creating a secret profile anyway. The peer pressure and desire she felt to conform hit my heart so hard, especially as a mom to a little girl. That authenticity and awareness of real-life issues is one of my favorite things about this duo so I was extremely glad to see it happening again in Secrets of Spring.

Though there is a bit of romance to warm your heart, I’d say it’s definitely not the main component to this Seasons of Jefferson novel. However, I have no doubt that readers will love Ty and swoon over their moments together. He was charming and sweet, while also being supportive and protective over his friendship with Jenna. It made me smile on more than one occasion to see their relationship evolve and grow, while also maintaining their own independent lives and interests.

Secrets of Spring had me surprised at every turn, made my heart race, and left me drooling for more from this dynamic duo. I wholeheartedly believe that Julie Solano and Tracy Justice are the very epitome of what the Young Adult genre should be about. They are oddly in tune with what fears, hopes, and feelings teenagers are facing these days, which brings a real authentic feel to their stories, ultimately leading to a instant connection with the characters. If you haven’t started this trilogy yet, I implore every reader to jump in and buckle up because it’s one heck of a ride that you’ll never want to end!


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Don’t Miss the Others in the Series!

When Fall Breaks (Seasons of Jefferson #1)

When Fall Breaks

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Dead of Winter (Seasons of Jefferson #2)

The Dead of Winter

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BLOG TOUR – The Scars I Bare by J.L. Berg

Title: The Scars I Bare
Author: J.L. Berg
Series: By the Bay #2
Release Date: March 12, 2018

Every scar tells a story…
Some are etched on the skin, for the whole world to see.
Others are buried deep, so deep, only the heart can truly find them.

Dean Sutherland was the quintessential guy next door. Strong and dependable, with a heart of gold, he knew exactly where his life was headed. Until one fateful night at sea ripped away everything. Now he’s adrift, a man without a purpose.

Cora Carpenter thought she had the perfect life. A successful career, an affectionate husband and a daughter who adores her. But soon that perfect world is crashing down around her, and she’s in need of a fresh start. Moving to a remote town on the coast of North Carolina seems like the perfect plan. That is until she finds herself face to face with a kindred soul from her past.

Dean and Cora have more in common than either are willing to admit. Both deeply rooted in their pain, they can’t help but find hope in each other’s eyes and passion entwined with every touch. But can two broken hearts make a whole?

Will the scars they’ve bared to one another poison their happily ever after, or can love truly heal all?

J.L. Berg delivers a sweet, heart-wrenching romance with Dean and Cora’s story in The Scars I Bare. After meeting this couple in The Choices I’ve Made, I had been anxious to hear their story. Dean deserved a happily ever after and J.L. Berg certainly serves up all the feels for this broken hero. Dean and Cora’s chemistry was palpable and I loved the push and pull between this damaged duo. They made me laugh and swoon and sigh. I was captivated by their journey and fell head over heels alongside them as they healed one another and rediscovered what it meant to live and love. The secondary characters brought this book to life and served up some much-needed levity. I adored seeing Jake and Molly settled into their own happily ever after and Lizzie stole the show more times than I could count.

“I used to know what that felt like. A sense of belonging. But, now, I felt like driftwood lost to the sea. Just coasting from one day to the next until I faded into oblivion.”

After all, Dean had been through in The Choice I’ve Made, I knew this book would break my heart a few times before all was said and done. J.L. Berg did just that, unraveling this character thoroughly before piecing him back together. I adored Dean’s personal transformation, watching him rediscover the world in the wake of tragedy. Cora’s evolution was equally satisfying. Her courage and selflessness left its mark on me and I couldn’t help but root for her to find the kind of happiness she so deserved. Together, Dean and Cora found the strength to face their fears, shed their insecurities, and move forward in love and life. These two definitely made my heart falter and flutter along the way, but their journey was worth every moment of heartache.

“And, if there’s one thing I’ve learned along the way, it’s that the best heroes are made in the face of tragedy.”

The one thing I felt was missing from this book was flashbacks to Dean and Cora’s time in the hospital together. There are fleeting and brief feelings and impressions captured in Dean’s journal and Cora’s blog, but readers don’t get to experience their initial connection and relationship for themselves. Without a real understanding of their foundation of friendship, it left things feeling very fast, especially considering Cora’s recent relationship history. Otherwise, I loved the progression of Dean and Cora’s relationship, how they grew together in an organic and sometimes beautifully imperfect way. J.L. Berg’s writing continues to wow me. This story was the perfect balance of heartfelt emotion, witty dialogue, and electric chemistry. The Scars I Bare is another phenomenal romance from this talented author and I can’t wait for more of this incredible series!


By the time I arrived at the inn for dinner, I was a goddamn mess. Sweat was running down my back from the heat, even after changing my shirt twice. I’d changed my mind three times on whether to bring flowers for Cora, doubling back to the house at the last minute to grab them after I firmly decided to leave them at home.

When I finally arrived, I was a solid twenty minutes late and probably looked like a psychopath from all the sweat and the mangled flowers in my hand.

But all of this was forgotten the moment the door opened, and Cora greeted me.

“Jesus,” I cursed, giving her a once-over before she even had the chance to say hi. “You look insane.”

“Insane is good?” she asked, pink staining her cheeks.

I’d never seen her in anything beyond scrubs and shorts. Granted, this woman could wear a paper bag and be the hottest woman in the room. Tonight though, she’d dressed up, wearing a short, strappy number with tiny pink flowers dotting the fabric.

“Insane is really good,” I clarified.

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Don’t miss the rest of the series:

The Choices I’ve Made (By the Bay #1)

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The Lies I’ve Told (By the Bay #3)

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**RELEASING JUNE 4, 2018**

Author Bio

I’m a California native, who lives in the South – Virginia to be exact. I still prefer sushi to fried chicken, avocados to okra, and I absolutely loathe humidity. I do love watching the seasons change though. My husband and I have been here for over a decade, and I still get giddy like a school girl every time it snows. It’s magical!

I’m married to my high school sweetheart, and we’ve been blessed with two beautiful daughters and two rescue pups I like to call my “coworkers”. I’m obsessed with chocolate, minions, anything Harry Potter and I love to watch re-runs of Friends and Gilmore Girls!

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REVIEW – The Choices I’ve Made by J.L. Berg

Title: The Choices I’ve Made
Author: J.L. Berg
Series: By the Bay #1
Release Date: September 28, 2017

A single choice in life can make a ripple or a wave…
When it comes to love, that choice can cause a tsunami.
Choose wisely.

Dr. Jake Jameson understands this all too well. Losing his mother at the age of eighteen, he walks away from his small hometown and the painful memories it holds, vowing to never return again.

Twelve years later, he finds himself driving back down the coast of North Carolina. When his father leaves him a small medical practice, he has no choice but to heed the call until he can find someone else to take it off his hands.

But coming back home means facing everything he left behind, including the one woman who might make it impossible to leave again.

Molly McIntyre has spent her entire life in one town. Taking over her parents’ small inn, she’s settled into a quiet, happy life. But all of that comes to an abrupt halt when Jake shows up at her door in need of a place to stay.

Molly loathes everything about this man, but she can’t find it in her heart to refuse his request.

After over a decade, these former lovers quickly discover what once burned brightly between them has only grown in their time apart. Soon they must decide if the choices they’ve made have led them back to each other for a second chance or one final goodbye.

J.L. Berg dives into a new series with Jake and Molly’s second-chance romance in The Choices I’ve Made. Angsty, tragic, and quietly hopeful, this couple took me on a journey I never could have expected. From beginning to end this story continually ripped my heart out. Jake and Molly face more challenges and tragedy then seem fair, but somehow J.L. Berg carried them through. Jake had the whole brooding, wounded hero thing down and Molly was every bit the feisty, brokenhearted heroine. Together they made for plenty of tension and tons of biting dialogue. With all of the fire between them, every sweet moment was that much more impactful and I waited anxiously for those tender respites.

“We’d thought we could fight the whole world as long as we were together, but at the first sign of battle, our shields had fallen, and our walls had crumbled.”

To be honest, this story fell a bit flat for me at times. While I understood Molly’s resentment and animosity towards Jake, I needed there to be an underlying connection and undeniable chemistry that had me holding out hope. The story told me it was there, but I had a hard time feeling anything other than the anger and hurt for most of the book. I also needed more personal growth from Jake and Molly. So much time was spent showing us that they couldn’t stay away from each other that I didn’t get to see them really revealed as individuals until the last 15% of the story. J.L. Berg usually blows me away with her complex characters and emotional depth, but The Choice I’ve Made just didn’t live up to her usual standards.

“And, when morning came, I’d tear out my heart and leave it beside her on my way to work because there wouldn’t be any use for it in the future. She owned it anyway.”

I definitely loved where both Jake and Molly ended up in the end, despite wishing they’d shown more growth along the way. The last part of the book packed quite the punch with a ton of heart and a deeply satisfying resolution. For me, the secondary characters really stole the show here. I can’t wait for Dean and Cora’s book and I hope we’ll be hearing from Molly’s sister eventually as well. Millie has a fantastic energy about her and a distinctive personality that totally intrigues. J.L. Berg brought this small town romance to life with incredible descriptive imagery that had me imagining myself right alongside the characters. I’m definitely ready for more of this beach town. The Choice I’ve Made is a sweet, sizzling second-chance romance that will leave you ready for more of the By the Bay series!


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Don’t miss the rest of the series:

The Scars I Bare (By the Bay #2)

Read our review HERE
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The Lies I’ve Told (By the Bay #3)

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**RELEASING JUNE 4, 2018**

Author Bio

I’m a California native, who lives in the South – Virginia to be exact. I still prefer sushi to fried chicken, avocados to okra, and I absolutely loathe humidity. I do love watching the seasons change though. My husband and I have been here for over a decade, and I still get giddy like a school girl every time it snows. It’s magical!

I’m married to my high school sweetheart, and we’ve been blessed with two beautiful daughters and two rescue pups I like to call my “coworkers”. I’m obsessed with chocolate, minions, anything Harry Potter and I love to watch re-runs of Friends and Gilmore Girls!

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RELEASE DAY REVIEW – Coming Up Roses by Anie Michaels

Title: Coming Up Roses
Author: Anie Michaels
Series: With a Kiss #4
Release Date: March 13, 2018

Rose Finch lived by checklists:

– Be an independent woman: check.

– Owner of successful company: check.

– Become a fierce and respected lady boss: check.

– Live within a strict routine as not to encounter anything unexpected: double check.

Aiden Daniels was not on her list.

Well, that was, until she found herself in a situation she’d never imagined involving the man who was unimaginably gorgeous. Not to mention strong, capable, sexy, and everything she never dared to hope for.

For the very first time, Rose wasn’t thinking about her career, or her ten-year plan, or her stock portfolio. Nope, she was thinking about a man. The worst part? He was thinking about her too.

Will Rose be able to step out of her box and let Aiden in? Or will love and happiness ultimately end up on the list of things she’d never have?

Anie Michaels returns to the With a Kiss series with Rose and Aiden’s story in Coming Up Roses. This novel has all of the charm, humor, and romance I’ve come to love from this series and yet still feels fresh and entirely unique. Rose and Aiden make their mark in a very big way, standing on their own and leaving me no choice but to take the leap with them. This duo was delightfully unexpected, and I wanted to savor their story and devour it simultaneously. Coming Up Roses was the perfect mix of electrifying chemistry and slow burn, keeping me on my toes and yet totally satisfied. From the moment they met to the very last page, I was under Rose and Aiden’s spell. Anie Michaels also delivers more of Riley, Camden, Hadley, and Justin and together, this group is absolutely everything. I laughed and felt and fell in love all over again.

“I mean, obviously, you’re a catch, but Rose isn’t fishing right now. She’s, like, not even on the boat or close to the dock. Trust me. Anglerwoman she is not.”

One of the things I enjoy most about this series is that each character is so wildly different and wonderfully quirky. Aiden and Rose are certainly no exception, and I relished getting to know them over the course of this story. Aiden was patient, kind, protective, and seriously swoon-worthy. He made my heart flutter as I fell hard for the way he loved Rose: fiercely and without reservation. Rose, on the other hand, stole my heart with how real and relatable she was. Her insecurities and fears ran deep, and they provided a captivating contrast to the otherwise confident and in control businesswoman. As much as I loved both of these characters on their own, it was the enchanting combination of Aiden and Rose that really packed a punch. I adored watching them grow together, challenging one another to step outside of what was familiar and safe and take a chance on forever.

“Nothing has ever changed my world like you have, Rose. I never want to go back to a life without you in it.”

This book was utterly sweet, perfect in its understated and genuine emotion. Aiden and Rose’s relationship evolved so organically and comfortably that I didn’t even realize they’d completely stolen my heart until it was too late to turn back. I was smitten by this couple’s inimitable connection, wanting nothing more than to stay beside them on their journey long after the final page had been turned. Anie Michaels’ writing absolutely sparkles as she effortlessly recaptures the magic of the With a Kiss series with this newest addition. The author drops readers right back into her vibrant, hilarious, and deliciously dreamy world of unforgettable characters and somehow makes it bigger, brighter, and even more beautiful. Coming Up Roses is contemporary romance at its best – smart, witty, sexy, and full of heart. For author Anie Michaels, this novel is definitely Coming Up Roses!


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Don’t miss the rest of the series:

Kiss Cam (With a Kiss #1)

Read our review HERE
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Riled Up (With a Kiss #2)

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Had Enough (With a Kiss #3)

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