Dirty Pool by Bethany-Kris Blog Tour and ARC Review

DIRTY POOL

by Bethany-Kris
Publication Date: May 6, 2019
Genres: Adult, Romantic Suspense, Organized Crime. Erotic Romance, Standalone

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SYNOPSIS

To get what he wants, he’ll have to play a game of dirty pool.

Michel Marcello never wanted to be a mafioso like every other man in his family—he wanted to be more. That doesn’t mean he’s unfamiliar with the life, or that he can’t hold his own against other made men.

They forgot where he came from …

His chance encounter with the fiery and beautiful daughter of Detroit’s most notorious Irish mob boss stokes flames beyond the ones that ignite between Michel and Gabbie Casey. Rivals shouldn’t mix, but these opposites have never been more attracted, either.

The lines between family loyalty, their duties, and responsibility begin to blur.

Love ruins all.

But these two aren’t the only ones playing this game, and it just became far more dangerous to get out alive.

*

Dirty Pool is a standalone romantic suspense.

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ABOUT BETHANY-KRIS

Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to four young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.

To keep up-to-date with new releases from Bethany-Kris, sign up to her New Release Newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/bf9lzD

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Review:

Michel Marcello is probably the most low-key out of the entire clan. Him not being part of the organized crime business of his family might make you brush off his character, BUT wait until you read his story.

Michel may be used to flying under the radar in the organized crime world but that doesn’t mean that his life isn’t interesting. In fact, this has got to be one of the best standalone books that I’ve read this year.

I really loved Michel’s character. I loved how emotionally adjusted he is especially when he found out that he was adopted. I loved how he took the news. He didn’t have any existential crisis. And most of all, he understood. He didn’t even doubt for a second regarding how much Catrina and Dante love him. He firmly believed that the people who raised him are his parents.

But most of all I love his drive to become a doctor and be something more than his family name. This is something that Michel and Gabbie have in common. Their will to succeed in their respective fields and pursue their dream is really awe-inspiring.

Gabbie is a feisty redhead who knows what she wants in life. When she decided that she wanted Michel Marcello, she goes for it. Despite being the daughter of the Irish mob boss, it didn’t stop her to go against the rules to be with him.

Michel and Gabbie together? Well, that’s a fiery little combination that’s full of passion and chemistry. As always, Bethany-Kris delivered such a wonderful tale between these two characters and so much more. I enjoyed reading their love story because it’s a modern version of the star-crossed romance tale that I always love to read. It reminded me of the classic love story between Romeo and Juliet, Tristan and Isolde, and Abelarde and Heloise.

Rating: 5/5

 

Harbor by Bethany-Kris Blog Tour and ARC Review

HARBOR

by Bethany-Kris
Renzo + Lucia, #2
Publication Date: February 4, 2019
Genres: Adult, Romantic Suspense, Organized Crime. Erotic Romance

AVAILABLE NOW!

SYNOPSIS

Lucia Marcello is the good girl—or she used to be. The youngest mafia principessa of her family, she’s not the one who falls for the man from the wrong side of the tracks, and she certainly shouldn’t have run across the country with him.

She’ll leave everything behind for him …

Renzo Zulla is the bad guy—society and life labeled him that way. The only person left to take care of his siblings, he couldn’t afford the distraction of falling in love with a rich girl far beyond his league, and he definitely shouldn’t have her riding shotgun as he runs for his life.

He doesn’t want her anywhere else …

Love keeps them together.
Fear keeps them running.
Chaos follows them everywhere they go.

How long can they keep moving before someone finally catches up?

The cost of love is always high.
Never harbor it blindly.

Note: Harbor is book two in a three-book trilogy following the same couple.

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SYNOPSIS

They didn’t come from the same world …

Born rich to a family of mafia royalty, Lucia Marcello was already destined to succeed. She wanted for absolutely nothing, until she met him.

Born poor to parents who never cared, Renzo Zulla was already destined to fail. He has struggled for absolutely everything, but she’ll prove to be his biggest fight yet.

She’s high society from the upscale suburbs.
He’s a drug dealer from New York’s slums.

They just weren’t meant to be … until they were.

What would it take to change a life—an entire perspective? All the things you thought you knew and wanted?

For them, it took thirty-six days.
And the privilege of meeting each other.

They shouldn’t be.
They don’t fit.
Love doesn’t care.

Note: Privilege is book one in a three-book trilogy following the same couple.

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ABOUT BETHANY-KRIS

Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to four young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.

To keep up-to-date with new releases from Bethany-Kris, sign up to her New Release Newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/bf9lzD

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Review:

I never knew I could feel for characters so much than when I read Renzo + Lucia’s star-crossed romance. I ended up with literal tears in my eyes! And believe me when I say that this rarely happens to me when I read a book.

But see, when you get invested in Bethany-Kris’ characters, you will definitely feel all the feels. Their crazy love really tugged into my heart and after reading Harbor, you can’t really help but fall in love with Renzo and Lucia a little bit more.

Harbor picked up after Privilege ends. The more I see these characters, the more I realize that they really are meant to be. It was really them against the world. But what gutted me most was when Renzo never really gave up on Lucia. Even when everything was going wrong against him, he would never ever put her in harm’s way. It’s really Ride or Die with them.

If you’re looking for a modern-day couple that will get you so invested in romance, then Renzo and Lucia’s story is just right for you. Harbor has enough action, suspense, and drama to get you so invested in the story that you couldn’t put it down until the end.

I cannot wait to see the conclusion of their story in Contempt. This is definitely one of the best books of 2019!

Rating: 5/5

 

The Kiss Thief by L.J. Shen Blog Tour and ARC Review

THE KISS THIEF BY L.J. SHEN

Release Date: January 9th

Cover Designer: Letitia Hasser at RBA Designs.

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Blurb
They say your first kiss should be earned.

Mine was stolen by a devil in a masquerade mask under the black Chicago sky.

They say the vows you take on your wedding day are sacred.

Mine were broken before we left church.

They say your heart only beats for one man.

Mine split and bled for two rivals who fought for it until the bitter end.

I was promised to Angelo Bandini, the heir to one of the most powerful families in the Chicago Outfit.

Then taken by Senator Wolfe Keaton, who held my father’s sins over his head to force me into marriage.

They say that all great love stories have a happy ending.

I, Francesca Rossi, found myself erasing and rewriting mine until the very last chapter.

One kiss.

Two men.

Three lives.

Entwined together.

And somewhere between these two men, I had to find my forever.

Excerpt
“Are you sure you’re on my card?” I turned to the man with a polite yet distant smile. I was still disoriented from the exchange with Angelo when the stranger pulled me against his hard body and pressed a possessive hand lower than socially acceptable on my back, a second from groping my butt.

“Answer me,” I hissed.

“My bid on your card was the highest,” he replied dryly.

“The bids are undisclosed. You don’t know how much other people have paid,” I kept my lips pursed to keep myself from yelling.

“I know it’s nowhere near the realm of what this dance is worth.”

Un-freaking-believable.

We began to waltz around the room as other couples were not only spinning and mingling but also stealing envious glances at us. Naked, raw ogles that told me that whomever the blonde he’d come to the masquerade with was, she wasn’t his wife. And that I might have been all the rage in The Outfit, but the rude man was in high demand, too.

I was stiff and cold in his arms, but he didn’t seem to notice—or mind. He knew how to waltz better than most men, but he was technical, and lacked warmth and Angelo’s playfulness.

“Nemesis.” He took me by surprise, his rapacious gaze stripping me bare. “Distributing glee and dealing misery. Seems at odds with the submissive girl who entertained Bishop and his horsey wife at the table.”

I choked on my own saliva. Did he just call the governor’s wife horsey? And me submissive? I looked away, ignoring the addictive scent of his cologne, and the way his marble body felt against mine.

“Nemesis is my spirit animal. She was the one to lure Narcissus to a pool where he saw his own reflection and died of vanity. Pride is a terrible illness.” I flashed him a taunting smirk.

“Some of us could use catching it.” He bared his straight white teeth.

“Arrogance is a disease. Compassion is the cure. Most gods didn’t like Nemesis, but that’s because she had a backbone.”

“Do you?” He arched a dark eyebrow.

“Do I…?” I blinked, the courteous grin on my face crumpling. He was even ruder when we were alone.

“Have a backbone,” he provided. He stared at me so boldly and intimately, it felt like he breathed fire into my soul. I wanted to step out of his touch and jump into a pool full of ice.

“Of course, I do,” I responded, my spine stiffening. “What’s with the manners? Were you raised by wild coyotes?”

“Give me an example,” he said, ignoring my quip. I was beginning to draw away from him, but he jerked me back into his arms. The glitzy ballroom distorted into a backdrop, and even though I was starting to notice that the man behind the demi-mask was unusually beautiful, the ugliness of his behavior was the only thing that stood out.

I am a warrior and a lady…and a sane person who can deal with this horrid man.

“I really like Angelo Bandini.” I dropped my voice, slicing my gaze from his eyes and toward the table where Angelo’s family had been seated. My father was sitting a few seats away, staring at us coldly, surrounded by Made Men who chatted away.

“And see, in my family, we have a tradition dating back ten generations. Prior to her wedding, a Rossi bride is to open a wooden chest—carved and made by a witch who lived in my ancestors’ Italian village—and read three notes written to her by the last Rossi girl to marry. It’s kind of a good luck charm mixed with a talisman and a bit of fortunetelling. I stole the chest tonight and opened one of the notes, all so I could rush fate. It said that tonight I was going to be kissed by the love of my life, and well…” I drew my lower lip into my mouth and sucked it, peering under my eyelashes at Angelo’s empty seat. The man stared at me stoically, as though I was a foreign film he couldn’t understand. “I’m going to kiss him tonight.”

“That’s your backbone?”

“When I have an ambition, I go for it.”

A conceited frown crinkled his mask, as if to say I was a complete and utter moron. I looked him straight in the eye. My father taught me that the best way to deal with men like him was to confront, not run. Because, this man? He’d chase.

About the Author
L.J. Shen is an International #1 best-selling author of Contemporary Romance and New Adult novels. She lives in Northern California with her husband, young son and chubby cat.

Before she’d settled down, L.J. (who thinks referring to herself in the third person is really silly, by the way) traveled the world, and collected friends from all across the globe. Friends who’d be happy to report that she is a rubbish companion, always forgets peoples’ birthdays and never sends Christmas cards.

She enjoys the simple things in life, like spending time with her family and friends, reading, HBO, Netflix and internet-stalking Stephen James. She reads between three to five books a week and firmly believes Crocs shoes and mullets should be outlawed.

Connect with L.J. Shen
Website: http://www.authorljshen.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorljshen/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/lj_shen
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authorljshen/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/authorljshen/
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Amazon: https://amzn.to/2KSFkad

Review:

The Kiss Thief is a contemporary romance that pays perfect homage to the story of Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennett from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. I loved the classic feel of the story with its masquerades, ball gowns, and galas.

Francesca Rossi was such an endearing character who struggled to find her rightful place in the machinations of her mob family. When Wolfe Keaton bulldozed his way into her life, her idyllic life was suddenly turned upside down. Her heart belonged to another but instead, she was forced to marry a stranger.

I loved how these two fought to find their way back to each other. It just goes to show how you really can’t fight who you fall in love with. With so much angst that seeped through Wolfe’s soul, it was Francesca’s guileless innocence that saved him. She proved that love can be made into an equal give and take. That no matter how the odds are stacked against them, they could still have the winning hand as long as they have each other.

I am amazed at how LJ Shen was able to build the characters from this book. They were so vividly real to me that I instantly devoured it the moment I had my copy. And I must say that Wolde is already one of my favorite LJ Shen anti-heroes, right next to Vicious of course.

Rating: 5/5

Privilege by Bethany-Kris Blog Tour and ARC Review

PRIVILEGE

by Bethany-Kris
Renzo + Lucia , #1
Publication Date: January 7, 2019
Genres: Adult, Romantic Suspense, Organized Crime. Erotic Romance

AVAILABLE NOW!

SYNOPSIS

They didn’t come from the same world …

Born rich to a family of mafia royalty, Lucia Marcello was already destined to succeed. She wanted for absolutely nothing, until she met him.

Born poor to parents who never cared, Renzo Zulla was already destined to fail. He has struggled for absolutely everything, but she’ll prove to be his biggest fight yet.

She’s high society from the upscale suburbs.
He’s a drug dealer from New York’s slums.

They just weren’t meant to be … until they were.

What would it take to change a life—an entire perspective? All the things you thought you knew and wanted?

For them, it took thirty-six days.
And the privilege of meeting each other.

They shouldn’t be.
They don’t fit.
Love doesn’t care.

Note: Privilege is book one in a three-book trilogy following the same couple.

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ABOUT BETHANY-KRIS

Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to four young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.

To keep up-to-date with new releases from Bethany-Kris, sign up to her New Release Newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/bf9lzD

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Review:

Privilege was an absolute treat to read! I had high expectations for this book because I’ve seen snippets of these characters over the past few years in some of Bethany-Kris’ other works. But I must say that it exceeded my expectations far beyond what I actually thought it could be.

Delving into this book to kick off this year’s romance binge is a great way to start 2019! I really enjoyed the vivid depiction of the contrast between Renzo’s life and Lucia’s privileged upbringing.

I loved how Bethany-Kris portrayed Lucia’s suffocating struggle as the baby of the Marcello clan and Renzo’s struggles to support his family. Two characters who seemed like polar opposites are brought together by fate and love. These two are slowly becoming one of my favorite canon couples in the Marcello universe, right next to Cross + Catherine of course.

I absolutely can’t wait to read what’s the next chapter of their story!

Rating: 5/5

Pucked Love by Helena Hunting Blog Tour and ARC Review

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Pucked Love, the final sexy and emotional standalone in the NYT bestselling Pucked Series from New York Times bestselling author Helena Hunting, is available NOW!

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As an NHL player, relationships haven’t been my thing. Shrouded in secrecy and speculation, they never last very long. But then that’s what happens when you require an NDA before the first date.

Until Charlene. She’s like a firefly. She’s elusive, and if you catch her she’ll burn bright, but keeping her trapped dulls her fire and dims her beauty.

I caught her. And as much as I might want to keep her, I’ll never put the lid on her jar. Not at the risk of losing her. So I’ve let her set the rules in our relationship.

But as long hidden secrets expose us both, I discover exactly how fragile Charlene is, and how much I need her.

We’re all broken. We’re all messed up. Some more than others. Me more than most.

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Download your copy today!

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Excerpt:

You’re turning twenty-six. It’s your champagne birthday, so we need to do something fun.” Violet bounces, making her boobs shake and my mimosa slosh perilously. “It should be themed! We can all wear leather chaps!”

“Could you be any more cliché?” I roll my eyes. “Just to be clear, Darren doesn’t own chaps.”

“Just a ball gag and a mask with no eye holes, according to Alex.”

And we’re back to my sex life. I knew I was getting off so easy.

I wonder if Darren is catching this kind of heat today. I seriously doubt it’s worse than what I’m getting since I don’t think his friends are likely to push his buttons, but I’ll have to ask when I speak to him next. I’m not sure when that will be, either. The message I sent about Gertrude was pretty straightforward and doesn’t necessarily require a response. Maybe I should’ve worded it differently.

Sunny raises her hand, like we’re all still in middle school and she’s waiting her turn to speak. “Wouldn’t a mask with no eyeholes be dangerous? You wouldn’t be able to see where you’re going.” Her eyes widen, and she looks around the room. “And what’s a ball gag?”

I honestly love that Sunny has grown up in this highly overinformed society and still manages to be innocent.

“Yeah, Char, wouldn’t a mask with no eyeholes be dangerous?” Violet props her fist on her chin and smiles. “And please, do explain what a ball gag is.”

“I’m not sure you really want the answer to that, Sunny.” Poppy gives me a look I can’t quite decipher.

Sunny twirls her hair around her finger. “Why not?”

“Where’s the harm in a little bondage-sex education? It’s not like Miller’s ever going to go out and buy either item for her. First of all, Alex would murder him, and secondly, I don’t think that’s Miller’s thing.”

Sunny’s face lights up, and she does jazz hands. “Oh! I think I know what Miller’s thing is!”

Lily grins. “Eating your cookie?”

“He really likes to do that, a lot. When my belly gets too big I’ll have to watch from the mirror.” She gets a faraway look in her eyes. “But he has another thing! Kind of like how you and Randy are always getting it on in bathrooms, except I think it’s a bit more sanitary.”

“And it doesn’t cause thousands of dollars of damage,” Violet adds.

Lily throws her hands up in the air. “That sink was already falling off the wall. It’s not my fault it broke!”

“That was one expensive orgasm,” I say.

“And Randy says it was worth every penny.” Lily’s smile is devious as she bites her knuckle, then turns to Sunny. “Anyway, back to Miller’s thing.”

Sunny wiggles around excitedly in her chair. “So Miller paints my toenails for me.”

“Miller’s thing is painting your toenails?”

“Yes. Well, no. I think he likes my toes.” Her fingers go to her lips, and she looks around the room, her cheeks flushing.

“Say what now?” Violet asks.

”Sometimes he kisses them.” She covers her mouth with her palm and says something unintelligible.

Violet sits forward in her chair. “Hold on a second, does Buck have a foot fetish?”

“Um, I don’t know.” Sunny looks worried now. “Is that weird? Is it, like, mask with no eyeholes kind of weird?”

About Helena Hunting

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Helena Hunting lives outside of Toronto with her amazing family and her two awesome cats, who think the best place to sleep is her keyboard. Helena writes everything from contemporary romance with all the feels to romantic comedies that will have you laughing until you cry.

 

Connect with Helena
Instagram: http://instagram.com/helenahunting Twitter: https://twitter.com/HelenaHunting
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Website: http://www.helenahunting.com/
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Review:

I have been waiting to read Charlene and Darren’s story since I first had a glimpse of them in the first Pucked book. And finally, the long wait is over! I cannot express how much I love this book, but suffice to say that every chapter was everything I have ever hoped for and it totally did not disappoint!

Charlene and Darren had been together for two years and at this point in the story, it was high time that they reassess their relationship and take it to the next level.

As an extremely private person, Darren is extremely closed off when it comes to his relationships. I had such a blast reading the part when he asked Alex and the team for relationship advice.

Since both Charlene and Darren are new to having a long-term relationship, it was so fun to read their thoughts and how they have finally navigated towards confessing their true feelings to one another.

Plus, it was extra special for me to read about what’s happening to the rest of the characters that I loved since the beginning. I especially loved Charlene’s banter with Violet and the rest of the gang’s get-togethers.

This is one book that Pucked lovers should definitely not miss out on!

Rating: 5/5

 

Vow by Bethany-Kris Blog Tour and ARC Review

VOW

by Bethany-Kris
Andino + Haven, #2
Publication Date: November 5, 2018
Genres: Adult, Romantic Suspense, Organized Crime, Erotic Romance

AVAILABLE NOW!

SYNOPSIS

They say it’s always the one you least expect …

Andino Marcello made his choices—the right ones for duty and famiglia. But even the right choices have consequences. He’s never been more aware of that fact than he is now. The thing is, Andino isn’t the same man he once was. The mafia wants what it wants. He’ll push until they all break. Even her.

They say love shouldn’t hurt …

Haven Murphy needs to move on—from her pain and the man who caused it. But the faster she tries to run, the more things stay the same. She never thought it would end like this for them. The thing is, Haven isn’t the same woman she once was. The heart wants what it wants. She’ll fight until it all lets go. Even him.

How far will he go for love?
All the way to the very bitter end.
That’s his vow.

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SEE WHERE IT ALL STARTED WITH DUTY, ANDINO + HAVEN DUET PART ONE!

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SYNOPSIS:

They say heavy is the head that wears the crown …

Andino Marcello’s world is turned upside down when he becomes the next heir apparent to the Marcello empire. He was comfortable in his place as a Capo, but comfort is for the weak in the world of mafioso. The boss’s seat is waiting. It takes meeting a tattooed beauty who has no idea who Andino is or the criminal legacy he now carries beneath his three-piece suits, and charming smile for him to finally bend the rules set out for him. That doesn’t mean he can keep her.

They say things that never challenge you won’t change you …

Haven Murphy is doing her own thing, and she does it well. The owner of a successful Brooklyn strip club, she makes it her only goal to never fail. She’s just trying to live her life when a morning jog puts her face to face with a man that will change the direction of her life with a single conversation. She knows there’s a dark side to him beyond his good looks, and three-piece suits, but it’s hard for her to care when she wants him. That doesn’t mean he can be hers.

He’s going to break her heart; she’s going to keep his.

Because duty waits on no one.

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ABOUT BETHANY-KRIS

Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to four young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.

To keep up-to-date with new releases from Bethany-Kris, sign up to her New Release Newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/bf9lzD

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Review:

Vow is the stunning conclusion Andino and Haven’s story. And I must say that it is beyond what I have ever expected and a whole lot more!

As a huge fan of Bethany-Kris’ works, I have naturally been so invested with the characters from the Legacy series. But what’s so great about her books is that her plot will never fail to surprise you at every turn.

Andino and Haven hit a few bumps in the road before they got their happily ever after but I was rooting for them all this time. So it was such a sweet conclusion to a story that I have grown to love ever since I’ve been introduced to this couple.

The push and pull between these two characters all throughout the book is so raw and gripping that there will come a time that you are torn between the two of them. In the end, what I especially love most about the book is that Andino has finally found the right balance between fulfilling his duty as the Marcello boss and his own happiness.

I do think that Andino is one of the most compelling characters that Bethany-Kris has ever written. You will be at awe at his ruthless personality but at the same time, that will just make you love him more.

Rating: 5/5

I Bet You by Ilsa Madden-Mills Blog Tour and ARC Review

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She’s the one bet I can’t resist…

Wall Street Journal bestselling author Ilsa Madden-Mills returns with an all-new swoon-fest of a novel about what happens when you look beyond labels and take a chance on love.

I Bet You, an all-new sexy college romance standalone is available NOW!

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Sexy Athlete: I bet you…

Penelope Graham: Burn in hell, quarterback.

The late night text is random but Penelope knows exactly who “Sexy Athlete” is. And why she shouldn’t take his wager.

Ryker Voss.

Football star.

Walks on water and God’s gift to women.

Just ask him.

His bet? He promises Penelope he’ll win her the heart of the nerdy guy she’s been crushing on. His plan—good old-fashioned jealousy. Once her crush sees her kissing Ryker, he’ll realize what he’s missing. Sounds legit, right? The only question is…why is Ryker being so nice to her?

Penelope Graham.

Virgin.

Lover of sparkly vampires and calculus.

His mortal enemy.

Penelope knows she shouldn’t trust a jock, but what’s a girl to do when she needs a date to Homecoming? And Ryker’s keeping a secret, another bet, one that could destroy Penelope’s heart forever.

Will the quarterback score the good girl or will his secret mean everyone loses at this game of love?

IBY-AN

Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2yKDR15

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Excerpt:

Penelope

I stand in front of the mirror in the restroom and gasp. Holy moly, I’m a total disaster. Red is on my shirt, my neck, my cheek, and there’s even a dab in my hair. I let out a heavy sigh as I wipe at it with a wet paper towel. At least my hair is auburn and the red will just blend right in. I scrub at the stain on my shirt, but all I end up doing is making a giant wet spot.

“Forget it,” I mutter to myself a few minutes later as I straighten my lopsided messy bun and adjust my glasses. My makeup is faded, and I reach into my apron for a tube of cherry red lipstick then quickly swipe it over my mouth. Like that’s going to improve the situation. I need a makeover and new clothes stat.

I walk out of the restroom and take in Sugar’s Bar and Grill, a restaurant in Magnolia, Mississippi. The dinner rush is over, but a few stragglers will come in, mostly college students. Only a block from campus, Sugar’s has a modern farmhouse feel with galvanized steel light fixtures, pale pine floors, and straight-back metal chairs, but the food…well, that’s what keeps the place hopping. It’s the only restaurant near campus to get anything you want served up with a side of fresh fried green tomatoes. Their menu also features Southern classics, such as chicken and dumplings or macaroni and cheese with bacon sprinkled on top. Just thinking about it makes my stomach rumble. I was so wrapped up in writing during my break that I forgot to eat.

I sigh and head to the football table, where they promptly hand over the money. “Nice doing business with you, boys,” I say before flouncing off, feeling Ryker’s eyes on me the entire time.

What’s his deal with me?

I mean, you’d think he’d want to avoid me because of the article, but it’s as if his mission is to be around me as much as he can. In fact, I’m not even sure he knew who I was before I wrote it since we don’t run in the same circles. I suspect he’s torturing me.

I push him out of my head and walk over to a table that needs bussing, picking up half-empty soda glasses and putting them on my tray. The door chimes, signaling that someone has come in, and I raise my head to see—

Whoa.

I freeze.

Bring out the angels and cue the hallelujah chorus.

Now that’s the kind of man I should be writing sexy scenes about.

Standing at the door is Connor Dimpleshitz—yes, his surname is unfortunate, but his IQ makes up for it. I’ve been crushing on him since our sociology class last semester.

Framed by a golden halo of sunlight as it glints through the windows, I decide he’s what would happen if Albert Einstein and Henry Cavill had a baby. “A hot genius. The perfect unicorn,” I murmur to myself.

I chew on my lip, debating on whether to mosey up to him and say hi or hide.

Hide wins. I know, I’m a little ridiculous, especially since we have calculus together this semester and he’ll obviously see me at some point in class.

But then I’ll have good hair and ketchup-free clothes.

I quickly survey the possibilities for my escape as the hostess seats him in another server’s section. My eyes land on the right side of the restaurant, where I could make a mad dash for the kitchen, but he’s bound to see me darting since I’d have to walk past him. Plus, I want to hang around and watch him without him knowing.

I come to a decision. Wrangling the tray of half-empty sodas I cleared, I quickstep it over to the back left corner, the farthest away from the double doors of the entrance. I maneuver my body into an awkward hunkering position behind a huge potted plant with wide fan-shaped leaves. At least five feet tall with a gnarly brown trunk, the green monster is perfect camouflage.

I peek around a big leaf that’s in dire need of a good dusting,judging by the motes floating around. Feeling paranoid that someone is a witness to my absurdity, I throw a quick glance over my shoulder to make sure no one’s around.

Ryker. Shit.

He’s staring at me from the football table, and there’s a glint in his gaze, as if he’s wondering what I’m doing.

I scowl and stick my tongue out at him. He makes me feel so rebellious and flustered and…excited.

I can’t even stop myself. Ugh.

His expression deepens in amusement, and I grimace, realizing my butt is sticking out. His annoying eyebrow jacks up and says, What the hell are you doing?

With eye telepathy I tell him to mind his own freaking business.

I pointedly turn my back on him and focus on The Unicorn.

A few seconds later, a familiar deep voice resonates from behind me, making me start. “You look a little flustered, Penelope. Spying on someone for your next story, perhaps?”

I freeze. Blink. His voice is husky and lower than before when he was calling me garçon, the tone reminding me of languid summer nights under a starry Southern sky while he gives me deep, passionate kisses—

Good Lord.Stop your daydreaming.Must. Stop. Reading. Romances.

I heave out a sigh and turn around to face Ryker.

What the hell does he want now?

***

“I don’t submit to the Wildcat Weekly anymore,” I say.

I worked for them most of last year, covering the home games and a few random articles. With a dad who was in the NFL, I know a lot about football, but when Sugar’s offered me more hours, I took it.

“No more football stories, huh?”

I shrug, my gaze taking in his chiseled cheekbones, the curve of his full lips, the hint of scruff on his jaw. Dammit, why is he so gorgeous? “What can I say? I covered the most fascinating story last semester—you. Guess I went out on a high note.”

He nods, taking that dig. “I always noticed you at the games.”

I scoff. “I didn’t think girls like me were on your radar.”

“You sat near the third row at the fifty-yard line taking notes at every home game.” His eyes drift over me. “And I didn’t say you were on my radar.”

“Really? Sounds like you did.”

“Trust me, I have more discriminating tastes.” He shrugs.

“Why, how sweet of you.” My Southern accent has thickened, the way it does when I’m sassy. It’s one thing to know he doesn’t like me, but for him to say I’m not up to his standards…well. “Did you pop over here just to be nice?”

He exhales and rakes a hand through his hair, calling attention to the lighter strands that have been bleached by the sun. “Honestly, I’m not sure why I came over here.” A conflicted expression crosses his face as he tugs at his collar. My eyes stare at the myriad of curly blond chest hairs that are poking out from the V-neck of the light blue Oxford he’s wearing with the sleeves rolled up to his elbows. “I just wanted to make sure you were okay from the ketchup getting all over you, but everything I’m saying is coming out wrong.”

Oh. This is different. And not what I expected.

“I’m fine, Baby Llama. No need to worry. You can go. Your girlfriends are waiting for you.” I tilt my head back toward the football table.

He doesn’t budge. “Baby Llama?” An amused grin flashes over his face.

I shrug. It’s been my private nickname for him since sophomore year when I stumbled upon him coming out of an upstairs bathroom at the Tau house after a shower with only a white towel wrapped around his trim waist. Some jersey chaser was with him. His hairy chest had both shocked my virgin sensibilities and excited me at the same time. The unruly curls just made him seem more naked, as if I’d seen his cock. Much to my dismay, I’d later dream about rolling around on that bed of golden curls. Seriously, who takes a shower with a chick in the middle of a kegger? Ryker Voss, that’s who. Because he can. And girls do whatever he wants.

But not this one.

I respect the game—even love it—but I don’t fall for football players, especially high and mighty quarterbacks who think they walk on water. My dad was the star player at Waylon twenty years ago, and trust me, I know how they operate. They get what they want and then they walk out, leaving broken hearts everywhere.

“Have you ever seen a real llama?” he asks, continuing our conversation. It’s as if he’s actually trying to be nice. “I saw one at a safari park once. Little bugger tried to eat my hand off when I fed him, but he was cute. Maybe you need a poster of one in your room so when you see it, you’ll think about me. I’ll even sign it for you.”

And there’s the cocky again.

“Buy me one. I’ll throw darts at it.”

“Damn, you never stop.” He huffs out a laugh, his eyes lingering on my neck. “Oh, there’s a bit of ketchup here too,” he says, reaching out to glide his finger across the top of my collar, his knuckles barely brushing against my neck.

The feather-light touch is brief and not sexual, yet my body hums, tendrils of sparks racing over my skin. I suck in a breath and catch his scent, warm and spicy with hints of leather and sandalwood.

He blinks and clears his throat. “Um, I actually have this cleaner stuff that I spray on my practice clothes. It’s a miracle worker. You’re welcome to borrow it. Of course, you’d have to come by the football dorm to pick it up. We could even do laundry together if you wanted?”

He says the words softly, as if they’re nothing,and I’m staring at him full on.

Do our laundry together?

I suspect Ryker Voss is flirting with me, though not well. The pimply-faced checkout boy at Big Star has better lines than this.

Yet…

Something warm grows inside my stomach and then flutters around, the sputtering of newborn butterflies. He is the hottest guy on campus. Still, I remind myself he’s a player, gather my resolve, and shoot those butterflies down.

“You’re being weird, Ryker.”

“Because I’m being nice? Yeah. New year, new start. I want to forget all the bad stuff from last semester.” He pauses. “And the article you wrote.”

“Is that right? Even the part where I said you dishonored the sport and were a disgrace to college players everywhere?”

He stares down at his hands. “I had my reasons for what happened.”

So I heard. He got involved in the fighting to help his friend and fellow teammate Maverick save his disabled sister.

“Ah, well, I did write a follow-up article, but it wasn’t nearly as popular as the first one.”

He shrugs, and somehow, he’s closer now. I stare into his thickly lashed cerulean eyes and blink at the force of them. His irises…God, someone should name a crayon after them.

“So…do you want to do laundry together sometime?”

This again? My mouth parts. “What? Like a date?”

“Yeah.”

I blink rapidly, my brain trying to wrap about this new Ryker. “No. I’m sure you already have jersey chasers lined up outside your dorm vying to do your laundry. I’ve heard they actually beg to rub your shoulders and do your homework. I imagine they even fight to be the one to suck your sweet little toes.” I come to an abrupt halt. Suck his toes? SUCK HIS TOES? OMG. Where did that random comment come from? I don’t have a foot fetish. I blame it on his presence and carry on. “And don’t worry about me—I don’t need your laundry advice. A little ketchup never hurt anyone.”

Determination crosses his face and with a flurry of movement, he drops a small piece of paper onto the tray I’m holding.

I stare down at it. Sexy as Hell Athlete is written in masculine handwriting with a phone number after it. I look back up at him, my eyes tracing the enigmatic half-smile on his face.

“I wrote it down for you earlier and wanted to give it to you after the ketchup thing, but I chickened out.”

Several seconds go by.

“Will you give me yours?” he asks after a few moments of us just standing here.

“My what?”

“Number.” He grins.

I indicate the tray and my obvious impediment. “I don’t have any paper on me.”

“Just tell me. I’ll remember.”

I’m flustered, and that’s the only reason I rattle off my phone number. He grins and repeats it back to me.

He lowers his voice in a conspiratorial way. “So…you’re watching someone, I take it. Anyone I know?”

Feeling bemused by his attention, I shake my head, quickly losing control of this situation.

“For a writer, you seem to be at a loss for words. Do I make you speechless, Penelope?”

I scoff. “No.”

“I’m curious as to what has your attention back here.” He slides in next to me behind the plant, his shoulder brushing against mine. He’s a giant next to my slender frame, and all at once, I feel protected and safe, which is entirely wrong. It’s probably his male pheromones, lulling me into softness before the kill—and damn if it isn’t working. He murmurs something about us hiding together and spying on people, but I’m distracted because my face is up close and personal with the chest hair that pokes out of his shirt. I want to trail my fingers through it and see if it’s as soft as it looks. He smells like alpha male and sex. Hard, passionate sex that makes you orgasm fast and furious.

Not that I have any firsthand knowledge of that, of course, but I have my fantasies.

Gird your loins, Penelope.

Resist the quarterback.

But I’m getting sucked in.

I blame it on the dimple that appears when he smiles. My stomach does that fluttering thing again, and this time, I can’t shoo the butterflies away. I’m weak. I move my eyes up the strong column of his tanned throat to meet his gaze. At least ten seconds go by as we take each other in.

What. Is. Happening?

“You’re pretty,” he murmurs. “Have I ever told you that?”

“We don’t usually talk except for when I take your order.”

His hand reaches up and briefly touches a piece of my hair that’s fallen out of my topknot. He rubs it between his fingers. “Your hair…it’s—”

“Auburn,” I manage, clearing my throat.

“It reminds me of a new penny, the way the amber color catches the light…” His voice trails off, and he bites his bottom lip. “God, that has to be the stupidest thing I’ve ever said.”

“You have worse lines. Tell me, is doing laundry code for sex?” I say, staring up at him. I’m itching to straighten my glasses, a nervous reflex, but my hands are holding the tray.

“I only use lines on jersey chasers. You’re the kind of girl I have to work for.”

“What about your discriminating tastes?”

“Pure bluff. I think we have a real connection, Penelope.” His face is closer now, and I swallow, wondering how we must look to everyone else in the restaurant. I realize that in the process of talking, we’ve backed up to the wall behind the plant, and I figure the only table we’re visible to is the football one, but I don’t tear my eyes away from Ryker to check.

“You smell like rainbows,” he says.

My chest rises. I’m enjoying his full-court press. It’s…intoxicating. “What does a rainbow smell like?”

“Sweet and delicious.”

“It’s the suckers.” His eyes land on my lips, and it almost feels as if he’s touched them. Heat rushes over my skin. “The red ones are my favorite. I think they’re cherry or strawberry or raspberry…definitely not cranberry…that’s disgusting,” I say, rambling, feeling disoriented.

“It’s crazy, but I really want to kiss you right now,” he murmurs.

My eyes drift over his shoulder to where Connor’s table is. I can’t see his face, but I know he’s there, and even though I’m drugged by Ryker’s proximity, I remind myself he’s the one I should kiss.

Not Ryker.

Ryker is a player—just like my dad was.

He watches the direction of my gaze and follows it. “You’ve been watching Dimples hitz, haven’t you?” he says, a frown line appearing on his forehead. “Are you into him?”

My stomach dips. “Why would you say that?”

“Because you hightailed it over here when he walked in and you’ve been hiding ever since. So, I figure he either did you wrong or you’re infatuated, and since I haven’t heard any gossip about you and him, I’m guessing you must have a thing for him.”

Abort! Abort!He knows too much!

Sanity slowly returns to my brain in small increments, and I take a deep breath, orienting myself as questions race through my head. What if he uses my crush against me? Maybe he wants revenge for the article. I don’t know!

Flustered and unsure, my eyes dart around the restaurant, looking for an exit so I don’t have to answer his question.

My gaze lands on the football table he came from, and I notice Archer watching us with focused interest, a calculating look on his face as he whips his eyes from me to Ryker. He leans over and whispers to Blaze, who turns to peer in our direction. I pause, my brain analyzing and decoding. Why is Archer suddenly interested in what Ryker is doing over here with me—especially when there’s a pretty co-ed sitting right next to him, tracing little circles on his bicep?

Yet Archer’s eagle eyes are onus. Watchful.

I notice all three players at the table have suddenly given us their attention, anticipation evident on their faces.

Alarms go off in my head and things start to click into place.

How nice he was to me. How we ‘have a connection’. Yeah, right.

Mortification washes over me.

How could I not have seen it sooner?

God, I am an idiot.I was so distracted…

I’m a bet. A stupid freaking bet.

I feel like someone just punched me in the gut.

My survival instinct tells me to get away from Ryker, and obviously,I could just walk away and hold my head high, but I want to make a point and show those football players they can’t toy with me. I release the tray I’ve been balancing for what seems like days in his direction. The contents of the glasses spill out and crash to the floor, watered-down soda and ice drenching us before dripping down to the floor. The plastic glasses make a horrible clattering noise on the wooden floors, and I imagine most everyone in the restaurant heard it. I don’t look to see their faces. I only glare at Ryker.

He jumps back and stares down at the mess on his khaki pants then looks back at me. “Remind me to never bring up Dimpleshitz again.”

“Stop your games, Ryker.”

His face stills. “What games?”

My teeth snap together. Enough.

Love football heroes and nerdy heroines?

Start the series of standalones today with I DARE YOU

Download your copy now or Read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2Fn15ur

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About the Author
Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and USA Today best-selling author Ilsa Madden-Mills writes about strong heroines and sexy alpha males that sometimes you just want to slap. She’s best known for her angsty, heartfelt new adult college romances.

A former high school English teacher, she adores all things Pride and Prejudice; Mr. Darcy is her ultimate hero.

She’s also addicted to frothy coffee beverages, Vampire Diaries, and any kind of book featuring unicorns and sword-wielding females.

Join her Unicorn Girls FB group for special excerpts, prizes, and snarky fun!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/ilsasunicorngirls/

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Connect with Ilsa

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorilsamaddenmills/
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Website: http://www.ilsamaddenmills.com/

Review:

The star quarterback and the nerdy girl? Now that sounds like an interesting romance! I loved how Ilsa Madden-Mills writes college romance that will make you swoon over the chemistry of her characters. Penelope and Ryker might seem like polar opposites but when it comes to love, opposites attract right?

I love the drama and the build-up of the romance between the two characters. It’s fun, sweet, sexy and a total page-turner! Believe me, I couldn’t put the book down after reading the first chapter.

I Bet You is one fresh take on a typical college romance. It’s got enough romance to keep you off your feet and the humor to make you laugh and enjoy every page.

 

Rating: 4/5

The Evolution of Man by Skye Warren Blog Tour and ARC Review

EOM_BT_BANNER.jpg

Ambitious. Intense. Irresistible.

The Evolution of Man, the stunning conclusion to the Trust Fund Duet by New York Times bestselling author Skye Warren, is LIVE!

TheEvolutionOfMan-1600x2400

I never wanted to fall for man.

And definitely not two men.

They tear me apart until I don’t know how I’ll ever be whole again.

Until I’m not sure I want to be. How can I choose between two halves of myself?

THE EVOLUTION OF MAN is the second novel in the USA Today bestselling duet, which begins with Survival of the Richest.

EOM_AVAILABLE NOW

Download your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2Lnmprw

iBooks: https://apple.co/2AkDJIS

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/TheEvolutionofMan

Nook: https://bit.ly/2K07XjF

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2LrFedm

Add to GoodReads: https://bit.ly/2LsFOY0

Start the series with Survival of the Richest

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2reGmoo

iBooks: https://apple.co/2DwxVgQ

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/SurvivaloftheRichest

Nook: https://bit.ly/2FAtmxX

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2FACXom

Google Play: https://tinyurl.com/yd8a7lz6

Excerpt:

“Good evening,” he says, as casually as if he saw me last week instead of six months ago.
“Christopher,” I say, in case he hasn’t noticed. A table like this is reserved for VIPs or very special guests. Or ones with deep pockets. “This is the chef’s table. We’re sitting at the chef’s table in Koi.”
“Is that good? I thought they just ran out of regular tables.”
“Did you just make a joke. Oh my God. You did.”
The chef chooses that moment to introduce himself, a rather effusive man with a comforting smile and a thick Japanese accent. He says he’ll forgive that we drink champagne as long as we try the sake pairing he sends with every course. And he personally serves the amuse bouche, a tuna sashimi lollie on a fennel cilantro salad with ponzu dressing that makes me moan despite myself.
“Dear God,” I say when we’re alone again, my eyes still closed with the wonder of that single bite. There’s salt and citrus, and basically this is what heaven tastes like. “Did you spend all two billion dollars to get this table? Because it’s worth it.”
When I open my eyes Christopher is watching me, a strange expression on his face. He hasn’t touched the plate in front of him. He seems more interested in the way that I dip my finger in the ponzu dressing and lime foam to savor the last drops. I’m not sure that love is on the table, but if the glitter in his eyes is anything to go by, sex is definitely an option.
“One billion,” he says, almost absently.
I blink. “What?”
“Only one billion is mine. The other half belongs to Sutton.”
It’s like a bucket of cold water dumped over my head. “Why did you bring me here?”
One dark eyebrow rises. “You’re the one who insisted we meet in person.”
“And you’re the one who brought me here.”
The long pause that follows isn’t filled with hearts and roses. He does not secretly love me, and I feel like a fool for even considering the possibility. Because he took me out to dinner? It’s really a good thing I don’t date much, because I’m terrible at it.
“I invested in the restaurant,” he says finally. “It helps to have your take.”
“Because I have such a refined palate?”
“Because you were born rich,” he says, his voice flat. “You know what rich people like.”
It takes my breath away, and I’m left staring at him with the most incredible taste on my tongue. That’s all I am to him? A rich girl with nothing better to do with my time than give him advice on his new restaurant? Meanwhile I was gullible enough to think he actually wanted to spend time with me. It isn’t right. It isn’t fair, but then Christopher Bardot has never played fair.

About Skye:

Skye Warren is the New York Times bestselling author of dangerous romance such as the Endgame trilogy. Her books have been featured in Jezebel, Buzzfeed, USA Today Happily Ever After, Glamour, and Elle Magazine. She makes her home in Texas with her loving family, sweet dogs, and evil cat.

SKyeWarren

Connect with Skye:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/skyewarren

Twitter: https://twitter.com/skye_warren

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/SkyeWarrenBooks

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/skyewarren/

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

Stay up to date with Skye Warren by signing up for her mailing list:

http://www.skyewarren.com/newsletter/

http://www.skyewarren.com

Review:

Skye Warren’s Evolution of Man is the stunning conclusion of The Trust Fund duet. I have been anticipating this release since the first book. And I got to say that it absolutely did not disappoint. I have never been more satisfied in reading the end of a series as much as this one did.
The sheer chemistry of Harper and Christopher was totally off the charts. Although it may seem that they are totally at odds with each other, it cannot be denied that they have strong feelings for each other. And with Sutton getting in the mix, there’s bound to be a lot of tension and more complications.
I commend how Skye Warren conveyed Harper’s anxiety of losing her mom to a terminal illness. It was so heartwrenchly devastating to see how she went to the five stages of grief of losing her loved one.
What I love about Skye Warren’s world is how the lives of her previous characters are interconnected with each other. It was really a treat to see glimpses of Avery, Gabriel, Damon, and Blue getting on with their lives. It made the Tanglewood neighborhood as real as the characters that are in it.
I can’t wait to read more about Skye Warren’s characters from Tanglewood.

Rating: 5/5

The Evolution of Man by Skye Warren Release Blitz and ARC Review

EOM-RB-Banner.jpg

Ambitious. Intense. Irresistible.

The Evolution of Man, the stunning conclusion to the Trust Fund Duet by New York Times bestselling author Skye Warren, is LIVE!

TheEvolutionOfMan-1600x2400.jpg

I never wanted to fall for man.

And definitely not two men.

They tear me apart until I don’t know how I’ll ever be whole again.

Until I’m not sure I want to be. How can I choose between two halves of myself?

THE EVOLUTION OF MAN is the second novel in the USA Today bestselling duet, which begins with Survival of the Richest.

EOM_AVAILABLE NOW.jpg

Download your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2Lnmprw

iBooks: https://apple.co/2AkDJIS

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/TheEvolutionofMan

Nook: https://bit.ly/2K07XjF

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2LrFedm

Add to GoodReads: https://bit.ly/2LsFOY0

Start the series with Survival of the Richest

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2reGmoo

iBooks: https://apple.co/2w5R2L7

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/SurvivaloftheRichest

Nook: https://bit.ly/2FAtmxX

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2FACXom

Google Play: https://tinyurl.com/yd8a7lz6

About Skye:

Skye Warren is the New York Times bestselling author of dangerous romance such as the Endgame trilogy. Her books have been featured in Jezebel, Buzzfeed, USA Today Happily Ever After, Glamour, and Elle Magazine. She makes her home in Texas with her loving family, sweet dogs, and evil cat.

SKyeWarren.jpg

Connect with Skye:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/skyewarren

Twitter: https://twitter.com/skye_warren

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/SkyeWarrenBooks

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/skyewarren/

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

Stay up to date with Skye Warren by signing up for her mailing list:

http://www.skyewarren.com/newsletter/

http://www.skyewarren.com

Review:

Skye Warren’s Evolution of Man is the stunning conclusion of The Trust Fund duet. I have been anticipating this release since the first book. And I got to say that it absolutely did not disappoint. I have never been more satisfied in reading the end of a series as much as this one did.
The sheer chemistry of Harper and Christopher was totally off the charts. Although it may seem that they are totally at odds with each other, it cannot be denied that they have strong feelings for each other. And with Sutton getting in the mix, there’s bound to be a lot of tension and more complications.
I commend how Skye Warren conveyed Harper’s anxiety of losing her mom to a terminal illness. It was so heartwrenchly devastating to see how she went to the five stages of grief of losing her loved one.
What I love about Skye Warren’s world is how the lives of her previous characters are interconnected with each other. It was really a treat to see glimpses of Avery, Gabriel, Damon, and Blue getting on with their lives. It made the Tanglewood neighborhood as real as the characters that are in it.
I can’t wait to read more about Skye Warren’s characters from Tanglewood.

Rating: 5/5

Dishonored by Bethany-Kris Blog Tour and ARC Review

DISHONORED

by Bethany-Kris
Publication Date: August 6, 2018
Genres: Adult, Organized Crime, Mafia, Romantic Suspense

AVAILABLE NOW!

SYNOPSIS

Sex is his weapon. 
Power is her drug. 

Caesar Accardo is gasoline. Mostly harmless while stable, but Aria holds the match to set the dishonored Cosa Nostra prince on fire in more ways than one. And if he burns down everything in his path because of it—so be it. 

The problem is … she just wasn’t prepared for all of him. 

Aria De Rose is a hurricane. Amazing from afar, but destructive up close. Caesar keeps getting pulled into the Camorra queen’s plans in her effort to gain power, but he’s a better player than she knows. 

The thing is … women like her are the reason why rules are meant to be broken. 

Philadelphia isn’t ready for game these two are playing—the sacrifices they make might not be worth it in the end, and someone will always lose in a war. 

They’re broken, so very vicious, and they are not the good guys. But for every villain in the world, there’s a monster at his back who made him that way. 

And monsters like those hide in plain sight. 

Note: This is a standalone romance with content that some might find triggering. Be warned, and read with caution.

ABOUT BETHANY-KRIS

Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to four young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.

To keep up-to-date with new releases from Bethany-Kris, sign up to her New Release Newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/bf9lzD

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Review:

Bethany-Kris is on a roll this 2018! I literally love all her releases this year and I’m also highly anticipating EVERY SINGLE BOOK that she is set to release this year. I’ve been waiting for Dishonored for a year now and it absolutely blew me away! It defied all my expectations of what a standalone novel should be and believe me, my expectations were really high as I’ve been a fan of the Seasons of Betrayal universe since it came out.

I was skeptical at first by the spin-off from the Seasons series since the expectations vs reality thing will always be present in this kind of novel. But, wow. Dishonored’s character plot line is so intricately written that you find yourself so invested with each character’s trials and tribulations. Believe me, the first chapter will really get you so hooked that you’ll find yourself loving and hating how the story unfolds as you read it.

What stands out the most in this book is that both the hero and heroine are nothing like you’ve ever seen before. They are both irreverent, unapologetic, and cunning in their own way. Aria De Rose has her own personal agenda and a power struggle within the Camorra organization that she is trying to win at all cost no matter what the consequences.

I love Aria because she is the epitome of what a strong independent female character should be. She has channeled all her pain and hardship into a relentless driving force that will make her come out on top and be the last woman standing.

And of course, we have Ceasar Accardo on the other end of the spectrum. His “I-don’t-give-a-fuck” attitude instantly endeared me from the get-go. Some may find his character hard to like at first but what lies beneath his asshole attitude is a person who was forced to grow up too soon from the abuse and neglect of his household.

These two didn’t lead perfect lives. They are scarred and flawed. They struggled and fought to get what they want. But despite all the odds against their favor, they still found a way to choose to be with each other. They didn’t get to live “normal” lives and finally get to live happily ever after in the end. They have managed to find a compromise that works for them because of their mutual love and respect for each other. And that is something what I think is the most enthralling part of this book.

Rating: 5/5