Je suis Charlie

Je suis Charlie

Donnerstag, 19. September 2019

BLOG TOUR - Holding on to Forever by Siobhan Davis and S.B. Alexander #HoldingOnToForever

Okay, this post was supposed to be a bit longer and it was supposed to be really nice looking and all that  and...it should have been online yesterday but...well, my internet didn't play nice and I couldn't get anything posted for a couple of days or make it nice or...yup. It's a bit better now but...




BLOG TOUR 


by 
Siobhan Davis and S.B. Alexander


Secretly dating Coach Parker’s daughter was never part of the plan. Neither was becoming her dealer…

ADAM
Returning to my drug-dealing past wasn’t on the agenda when I accepted the full ride to play ball at Cypress U. But Mom lost her job. And my sister’s medical bills are mounting. So, I’ve no choice but to change the playbook.

When Emily walks into my life, like a fallen goddess with the ultimate power to destroy me, I know I’m screwed. I should steer clear, but I’m the one supplying her poison of choice. Falling for her is a complication I don’t need, but the more she’s around, the harder it gets to walk away. She needs me, and I crave her more than the sport I love.

Now, it’s all on the line. Including the NFL career that’s tantalizingly close.

The stakes are high, but family means everything, so I’ll take my chances.

EMILY
It’s only a problem if it’s out of control. And I have it in hand.

Except a certain a-hole discovers I’m using again, and he threatens to rat me out to my folks. Mom’s president of Cypress U, and Dad’s the illustrious football coach. Appearances mean everything to them, and I’m a continuous disappointment. They told me I’d be out on my ass if I fell off the wagon, so keeping it a secret is my number one priority.

Until the super-hot all-star QB takes more than a passing interest in me. Adam gets me, in a way no guy ever has, filling my head with ideas of forever—and now, I want more.

Dating my dealer is a recipe for disaster, especially when it’s forbidden, but I can’t help myself.

Because I’ve fallen too deep.

And the hole is too large to crawl out of.


I must admit that I was a bit upset at the beginning of the book because I hated to see Adam become a dealer. I totally got why he didn't have a chance to do the right thing but I hated to see him trapped. Emily and I needed a bit more time but the more I read the better I understood her reasons for using drugs. Sure, there are definitely better ways to deal with problems even and if I'd meet her, I'd try to get her to talk to someone about it and to get help but even though her life seems to be much easier from the outside than Adam's, it's her who struggles and who will always have to fight. Somehow though, these two become each others safe place, the one who supports and who helps and against all odds, Emily seems to get her s*it together and become clean. Does she?

Even though I loved the hero and the heroine and some of the minor characters a lot, I felt a bit lost at times. Well, lost might not be the right word, don't get me wrong, the book is captivating and I kept reading and reading and....but looking back, it feels as if there were problems piling up left and right, many topics were introduced, many, many things happened and at times I felt a bit breathless trying to keep up with the events. So many problems, so little time...or, why did it have to deal with so many different problems at once. I know, I know, life is a b....witch and even in real life far too many things happen at once and leave who struggling and fighting but in this case, it just felt as if it was a bit too much. One topic chasing the other and in the end, things were a bit rushed and maybe there was a bit too muc of unicorns, rainbows and sugar sprinkles but even though, I loved this book and will definitely read it again.
 
 ★★

 
Watch the Trailer:




Excerpt

I’m half-tempted to call Donnie to make sure he gave me the correct address when headlights brighten the narrow alleyway.
The SUV is crawling toward me, and my nerves are jacked. I shouldn’t be doing this. I should find a decent part-time job to pay for my sister’s medical expenses, but I see no other way. We have to get her vest fixed or buy a new one. Selling drugs is the only way to make some quick cash. Besides, I’m good at it. I sold dope and pills for years, and I’d never been arrested. I always had my pulse on the neighborhoods, and I knew where cops loitered at night.
You’ve been out too long. Things might have changed, and you’re in a new state.
I push my inner thoughts aside. None of that matters. I’m always alert. I always know what’s around me, and as Mom tells me, I’m perceptive as hell. I have to be. Taking care of Mom and Phoebe—especially Phoebe—I have to be alert to her sounds, her breathing, and her emotions.
Thinking of my sister sends pain slicing through my chest. I can’t let anything happen to her. She spent two days in the hospital, where the doctor pumped her with antibiotics, until she started feeling better.
The SUV pulls to a stop, and a short stocky guy gets out of the front passenger seat brandishing a gun. The driver, a taller man than his compadre, follows.
I lift my hands as if a cop is arresting me. “I’m unarmed.”
Aiming the gun at my head, he stalks toward me. His dark eyes are hard, his mission resolute. “Move and you’re dead.” His deep voice is lethal.
An all too familiar wave washes over me, and I’m tempted to back out of this stupid idea to sell drugs and run before he pulls the trigger. I’m not any good dead to Mom and Phoebe. But I know his words are just a scare tactic while he frisks me.
I stand statue-still while the second dude, sporting a thin beard and no mustache, pats my sides, my lower back, down my legs, and straight down to my ankles. He sticks one finger in the air. “All clear.”
The stocky dude lowers his gun, and, inwardly, I grin. The goon didn’t find the blade in my boot. I’m not about to use it though. But I don’t walk into situations like these unarmed. Still, I make a mental note of the type of men I’m dealing with.
A tall man climbs out of the back seat. He’s sporting baggy jeans and a New York Yankees ball cap, and the gold bling around his neck probably weighs ten pounds as it glints off the dim light on the side of the car repair shop.
It’s all I can do not to roll my eyes. Donnie doesn’t show off like this dude. Donnie’s motto is blend in with the crowd. Standing out only draws attention.
You must be Wrangler. I’m Ray Diaz.” Ray struts over to the metal garage door. “You understand I have to be careful.” He punches a code in on the keypad tacked to the frame of the door. Within a second, it opens.
I tuck my hands in my jean pockets. “I’m well aware of the industry.”
A deep chuckle erupts from Ray. “I heard. Donnie told me you were a cocky punk too.”
It’s my turn to laugh. “When I need to be.”


Dienstag, 17. September 2019

Damnation: Tales of Cinder by Melissa Haag



 IT IS OOOOOOOUT!

Damnation, the final book in the Cinderella Retelling 


by Melissa Haag is finally out!



Blurb:
 
Abused but not beaten, I will break the curse.
 With the reason behind her mother’s death revealed,
it’s a race for Eloise to exact her revenge and prevent her stepsisters from marrying the prince. However, amidst the glittering jewels and colorful ball gowns, the royal court holds secrets of its own that will devastate Eloise and strike a final blow to her plans. Betrayed by the one person she thought she could trust, Eloise questions how far she’s willing to go for revenge.

After all, in the game of kingdoms, everyone is a pawn.


 "Damnation" is the final book in the Tales of Cinder series by M.J. Haag, a rather dark retelling of the tale of Cinderella. If you haven't read the other books yet, don't touch this book, don't go there, go back and start right at the beginning!
This is the finale and it is amazing! I wish that I could simply say "I knew it", which, in a way, I can say that but there were so many unexpected twists and turns that it wasn't as easy as that even though my instincts were spot on. Sort of. Mostly. Though there was much more to it and things were not as simple as I thought. This book really kept me on my toes and took me on a roller coaster of emotions! I you loved Defiant and Disdain, you will definitely love this great conclusion to the series!
Now, though, I'll have to be patient again (which is soooooo not my strongest suit) because there's still Kellen's story waiting to be told...


★★★★

Sonntag, 15. September 2019

How to Kiss a Bad Boy by Amanda Ashby #HowToKissABadBoy




Blurb:

A girl with a plan. A guy with a past. And a summer that could change everything.

Sixteen-year-old Frankie Hargreaves has her summer all figured out. Work at her aunt’s retro food truck, and have her first kiss with the cute guy from the surf shop. It’s foolproof. Until her aunt hires local bad boy, Jackson Lang to help out. Sure he’s cute. Okay, really cute. But Frankie knows what guys like him are like. All she needs to do is ignore him and stick to the plan. How hard can it be?

Jackson’s always lived in the shadow of his father’s criminal past, and is used to the world judging him. Which is just fine. He’s happy to keep to himself and look out for his mom and kid sister. That way he can’t be disappointed. Problem is the longer he works with the gorgeous Frankie, the more he starts to think perhaps there’s a chance for him to have a different life.

Jackson isn’t the only one falling hard, but after two dates things get complicated and Frankie soon discovers her first perfect kiss might just lead to her first painful heartbreak.
 


Oh my goodness! I really loved this sweet and captivating book with its cute, quirky and absolutely lovable characters! Okay, Jackson is not really the epitome of cute and quirky but his loyalty and helpfulness as well as his steady and caring personality that totally contradicts his bad boy image and all the prejudices against him, make him very lovable.

When Frankie sets out one fine summer to kiss a boy, it definitely wasn't Jackson Lang, son of the infamous Marty Lang and bad boy par excellence who she had in mind. She wanted someone, well, less infamous. "Hence why she'd carefully selected Aaron for her first kissing experience."
Somehow though, when she gets to know Jackson, she realizes that rumors are not always even close to the truth and that this bad boy may even turn out to be the good one, the one who captures her heart, the one who stands fast when things get rough.
Best laid plans and all that, right?

And Jackson, well, meeting and spending time with someone like Frankie may open up a new world for him as well, one that is full of color and laughter and one that shows him that he is not only his father's but someone people can rely on and someone people care for. Oh, and he might even take "love advice from a green-haired doll" but when a guy wants to figure out this relationship stuff, he has to take all the help he can get, right? Even if it comes from a green-haired doll.
Yep, I loved this book and I can't wait to find out why her friend Via spends her holidays in a tree. Kind of. Sooooo....I really have to read that book. Right. Now!



~4.5 stars~

 

Freitag, 13. September 2019

Gym or Chocolate by Jane Harvey-Berrick and Stuart Reardon



by 


"The laugh out loud, feel good story you've been waiting for!"

Career girl and radio host hotshot Cady Callahan has never met a chocolate she didn't love. She has curves and doesn't care.
She's shocked when a raffle ticket bought to support a veterans charity means she's won a year's membership to Body Tech, an exclusive Manhattan gym, where all the top athletes train and all the A-list actors go to get in shape for their action roles. She's also won a personal trainer in the shape of far too tantalizing Rick Roberts.
Rick is less impressed when Cady's arrival leads to a media circus. The retired British rugby ace runs a serious training facility, and he definitely doesn't have time for anyone who doesn't want to work hard.
When curvy Cady challenges him to train her to run a marathon by the end of the year, it seems a solution to both their problems. If ... when she drops out of training, his gym will go back to normal.
But Cady isn't planning on losing the bet--she just wasn't counting on any complications. And surly Rick is very complicated. And as tempting as the tastiest treat.


Every now and then there is this unexpected book that finds its way into your life and has a huge impact on it. "Gym and Chocolate" is one of those books for me.

When I started to read this book, I just expected a nice rom-com and a good laugh. I knew that I loved Undefeated and Model Boyfriend by this author duo and knew that no matter what, Gym or Chocolate wouldn't be too fluffy or without substance. What I didn't expect though was how much this book would resonate with me.


First, the obvious part. You can't read this book and not love Cady! She is an amazing character, sure of herself, confident and full of life and laughter. Rick stood no chance against her no matter how much he tried to stay professional and to resist her. He was the one who stood by her and cheered her on when she tried to reach for her...okay...dream?...her nightmare?....oh, well,  when she trains for a marathon. Cady, on the other hand, was the one who stood by him when he had to face stalking exes and sloppy seconds (those are never a good idea unless it's a donut...), the temptation of donuts and laughter.


Cady always stays true to herself even if that means that others spurn or ridicule her. She is fat, yes, she loves donuts (among other things) and she has enough confidence that she feels alright in her own skin. The first thing everybody thinks of when they see her is  how much weight she might want to lose when she is training at the gym. The loss of weight means nothing to her though but the freedom

and the power that her getting fit gives her, that is something that she really enjoys. With Rick's acceptance of her and her stance on that, they make a formidable team. Together they could even be able to achieve their aim -  and maybe find some love along the way. 


There were times when I laughed so hard that I couldn't read on because I couldn't see anything anymore. There were others when I swooned or was p...upset or...
I really loved every single page of this book with its positive view of fit and fat and everything in between. You see, it's just a single letter, fit or fat, but it means the world. You can be fit and you can still be fat but as long as you feel good and as long as you feel right, everything is alright. Being fit is a gift that is worth everything. I

loved how Cady simply accepted that she was overweight. She loved to eat and she wasn't willing to give that up but she was willing to work hard to become fit. Despite everybody having an opinion (and usually not a favorable one) when it came to her weight, she just felt good. She was who she was and she was right the way she was.

As someone whose life has always been overshadowed by diets, weight loss or gains and accidents, it was a wonderful feeling to read about a heroine like Cady who simply doesn't give a sh...

When I was born, I was underweight because my mother fancied Twiggy, the anorectic teeenager model at the time and had lost too much weight to carry me full term. 
When I was twelve, I was normal seized, rather slender actually but my mother wanted me to lose some weight because she thought that my lower legs were too round. That started a plethora of diets, weight loss programs and insecurities. I was still slender when I got pregnant. Both kids left me with some additional pounds but nothing too bad. I was finally at a point where I had accepted that I would never live up to my mother's expectations and didn't care to do so. At that point, I just wanted to make sure that my daughters would never feel fat or just "less". Less beautiful, less attractive, less. I'm not sure that I always did and said the right things, after all, I'm just human but, well, I hope that I did at least better than my mother (Don't get me wrong, I love my mother and I know that she loved me. Loving someone doesn't prevent us from doing or saying the wrong things.).

When our whole life was turned upside down one day, I couldn't eat as healthy as I was used to do so
anymore and I didn't care enough because we were fighting for my daughter's life. I didn't eat more but I ate less healthy and gained 12kgs/~23lbs. I never lost that weight but gained more when I myself got ill and needed medication. As a side-effect of that medicine, I gained another 24lb in six months. We tried to use another one, that didn't work and the next three months brought me another 12lbs. Throw in some chronic pain and stuff and I can honestly say that I haven't felt that I look "right" or ~gasp~ even attractive for a long time because of my weight. 
A couple of weeks ago I started to eat differently and to chose more plant-based food which seems to help because I don't eat less but I have started to lose weight - but what is more, I started to feel better, needing less pain ,medication so now I'm working on becoming fit. 

Reading "Gym and Chocolate" made me realize that I don't have to lose all that weight to be allowed to feel good about myself. I knew that I wanted to be fitter and healthier but I still felt that nothing would be alright till I lost enough weight to be attractive again and that being fit wouldn't mean anything without it. 
That has changed. And guess what - it feels great. I had made the first steps before reading this book but this book made me feel that it is okay. That it's not just something that I tell myself to feel better about my weight but that it's something that I can believe. 

Fit and fat...one single letter but a world of difference!




Excerpt



Cady
Your fat ass stuck in that chair or what?” sneered Jerry Winters, the resident misogynist who followed my show—a man so vile, he brought out the homicidal maniac in most people, especially me. He hated the fact that I’d gotten the fast lane of morning radio, and he’d been sidelined into the slow lane of pre-lunchtime chat.

Thank you, karma.

I smiled sweetly.

Aw, Jerry! Did someone wake up with a pineapple stuck in his rectum or is it just the way you walk?” I leaned in closer, careful not to breathe in anywhere near his halitosis. “Yes, my ass is fat but I should warn you … I ate the last person who commented on it.”

Then I snapped my teeth at him, making him jump.

I laughed as I sauntered away, amused by his huffy comment, “so unprofessional”.

I had a thousand comebacks for guys like him, guys who thought they could upset me by commenting on my weight. Screw him, or rather not. I had a great job, fabulous friends, as much sex as I wanted (thank you, Tinder), an apartment that cost me an arm and two legs but had an awesome view almost to Central Park, and I was comfortable in my own skin. That’s what guys like him could never understand—I didn’t give a rat’s ass what he thought of me.

   Or do you want to know more about Rick? 



Cady
As I approached the stage, smiling so widely my lips were plastered against my teeth, I realized that the grumpy man I’d nearly shoulder-barged outside the women’s bathroom was standing on the stage: Rick Roberts, the owner of Body Tech. Six-foot plus of honed and toned body, sharp cheekbones, soft lips, dark hair ruthlessly pulled back into a man-bun, a short beard, shot through with silver, which personally I found very sexy, hinting at maturity and experience … but wow, those angry, storm-filled eyes. He stared at me with growing horror in his expression which he failed to hide as he wordlessly handed me a gift certificate.
I accepted the envelope, planting a bright red, lip-shaped imprint on his cheek, then posed for photographs.

Nice aftershave,” I whispered to him, amused to see a dull flush redden his cheeks. “Thank you on behalf of XKL Radio,” I said more loudly, smiling and waving my prize in the air. “We’re so proud to support this amazing charity for veterans, and we thank you all for your service.”


Rick and I left the stage together, the grim-faced man holding my elbow as we descended the four steps. It was a gentlemanly gesture, but I wanted his condescending hands the hell off of me.

No matter how good he smelled.

Or how hot he looked in a custom tux.





 
 Oh, did I mention that those two didn't really start out as besties...?  ;-)


Mittwoch, 11. September 2019

TEASER - Mr. Mayfair by Louise Bay











Release Date: October 1st, 2019


Add to Goodreads: 
 



PRE ORDER TODAY!!

Amazon & Audio live October 1st.


BLOG TOUR - The Hardest Hit by A.S. Teague



BLOG TOUR



an all-new emotional, single dad romance from 

A.S. Teague 

is available now!

My friends used to tell me ‘What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.’ Clearly they lied, because there was no way the chemistry I had with Mel could ever be left behind.
However, my children, her career, and nine hundred miles between us meant that for seven years, Melanie Holstein was the one who got away.
I was Aiden Shaw, first-round draft pick turned the best quarterback the league had ever seen. I worked hard to secure my position in football history while balancing life as a single dad. Through it all, my Vegas spitfire was never far from my mind.
And considering her best friend was now with my best friend, it was pure and utter torture.
When my career took a devastating turn, Mel was the first person at my side. I was broken and defeated, but that stubborn woman was determined to piece me back together.
I liked to pretend Mel and I were destined for greatness, but Lady Luck had never been on our side. And the tragedy that followed might have been the hardest hit of all.



Excerpt

Fine. I won’t argue anymore.” Brooke finally relented to letting me loan her more money so that we didn’t have to leave so early.
But suddenly, leaving didn’t sound like such a bad idea.
My face split into a grin, and I swayed toward her, whispering, “That’s my girl. Now, don’t be obvious, but there is a fuckin hottie at the table across from us who has been eyeing you since we sat down.”
I didn’t mention that I only knew he’d been eyeing her because I’d been having some serious visual foreplay with his buddy.
Brooke looked to the craps table where five men were cheering every time their numbers hit, clapping each other on the back and whooping. Her jaw dropped and I giggled.
After a full thirty seconds of her staring open-mouthed across the smoky area, she blinked and I hissed, “Yessssss.”
I… um… think he’s looking at you.”
Pshhhh.” I elbowed her and glanced back over to where both men had stopped what they were doing and were watching us almost expectantly. “That’s all you, girl. The guy beside him is a different story. Mister Dreamy over there, though, only has eyes for Brooke.”
Who’s Brooke?” she whispered.
I couldn’t stop the sharp burst of laughter that erupted from my lips, and she grabbed her wine glass and drained it in one swallow.
I grabbed my own and followed her lead. Game on!
Shit, I think I just had an out-of-body experience,” she whispered.
I scooped up my pile of chips and dumped them into my clutch. “Hopefully, you’ll have another one later tonight. Let’s go talk to them.”
No, no, no,” Brooke objected as I dragged her by the arm to the group of guys. “Mel, stop. We can’t just…”
I gave her a gentle shove and she teetered on her heels, careening right into the back of the guy who had been watching her. And when he turned, I knew that my work there was done.
It was time to go take care of my own business.
See something you like?” I asked, stopping in front of my date for the evening, whether he knew it or not.
He leaned in close and whispered in my ear, “I’ve never seen anything so breathtaking in my life.”
I tipped my head back to look at him, a response frozen in my throat.
The side of his mouth hitched as he stared down at me, his thick lashes giving a spectacular show.
I braced for what he was going to say next. Sexy as he was, I still needed him to have a personality, or it would never work… not even for a one-night stand.
He wedged a hand in the pocket of his jeans and murmured, “That took you long enough. I was worried I’d lost my charm and I was going to have to summon a smoke signal in order to ask you out.”
My brows shot up and a smile curled my lips. “Walking over to meprobably would have been easier.”
Maybe. But then I would have missed the view of those sexy legs as they carried you over here.” He leaned in close. Not touching me physically, but his proximity was a tangible caress of its own. “Trust me when I tell you, it was well worth the wait.”
My breath hitched as he leaned away, that seductive grin still firmly in place.
I’m Aiden. And you are?”
Whoever the hell you want me to be.
Mel. Er… Melanie. Whatever. I answer to both.”
He nodded, his gaze dropping to my mouth. “Nice to meet you, Mel.”
That was the exact moment I realized that I’d been wrong. It wasn’t Lady Luck who had been on my side. For the way my entire body was heating, this man had to have been the work of the devil himself.
And I was completely okay with that.

Montag, 9. September 2019

Release Day Blitz - Justifying Jamie (Reason to Ruin #1) by Anna Brooks

  



Blurb:  
 The first time I heard his cheesy pick-up line, he made me laugh. The next night, I fell madly in love. Then he shattered my world without speaking a word, leaving me with an empty heart and a hollow soul.

Still, I tried to fix what was broken, only to be humiliated beyond repair. I couldn’t believe the same man who promised me heaven so ruthlessly put me through hell with lips that once worshipped me.

I thought that was the end of us, but then a life-altering discovery threatened more than just me, and the least likely man to stand at my side was the one who refused to leave it.
  


I really enjoyed reading this book even though these two star-crossed lovers threatened to drive me crazy for a while. Communication is a nice thing. More people should try it. Just saying... But well, when feelings are hurt and so on, right?
Back to the beginning though. 
 
I loved the chemistry between our hero and our heroine but I think it's not too harsh if I say that I really really hated Mercy's mother and the way she treated her daughter ... 

Jamie and Mercy though, well, the chemistry is there and apart from that it is a struggle, it is a fight, it is - everything. The good and the bad and everything in between. The moment Jamie and Mercy met, they know as much as the reader knows that there is more but the time it took them to get there, wow, I was tempted to throw my kindle over and over again because I couldn't believe that fate would be so cruel and those two so oblivious.

When our hero and our heroine finally get their HEA, I was almost as relieved as the two of them.
Well-written, captivating and at times frustrating -  Justifying Jamie is the first book in the new series by Anna Brooks and I can't wait for the next books to find out more about these guys and the women they love! 


★★★★