Category Archives: Giveaway

[Review & Giveaway] The Wedding Date by Cara Connelly

 

 
 
The Wedding Date by Cara Connelly
A Save the Date Novella
Releasing November 19th, 2013

Blurb
 
Julie Marone isn’t your ordinary matchmaker. Instead of setting up singles, she matches already-happy couples with their dream homes. It’s her calling. Her gift. And since she lost the other half of her own happy couple, it’s become her passion.
Cody Brown isn’t your ordinary cowboy. Instead of roping runaway steers, he wrangles sick kids and strung-out junkies as an ER doc. It’s his job. His responsibility. And since his brother lost his wife to a drunk driver, it’s his mission.
When Cody moves from Austin to Boston, he wants Julie to find him a condo, and fast. But she’s got issues with that. Because not only is Cody single, he’s a doctor to boot, and ever since her fiancé died, she’s got a major grudge against doctors.
Cody charms her into breaking her “couples-only” rule, but when he angles to be her date for her sister’s Christmas Eve wedding, he finds out Julie’s “no-doctor” rule is unbending. Still, he’s not quitting, because as hard as Julie fights it, there’s heat between them. If Cody has his way, they’ll be a couple by Christmas, and the next dream house Julie finds will be their own.
 
 
Buy Links:
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My Review: 
4.5 Star Review – The Wedding Date

I recommend this book.

This book contains heartache, passion, and laughs.    

Julie has a gift for matching couples to there perfect homes.  When Cody stops in her office he needs a condo.  She turns him down as she only works with couples. 
 
When he talks her into helping him out she does but she’s not happy about it. He is not part of a couple and even worst he is a doctor. 

Something in her past has made her hate all doctors.  How will Cody breakdown her walls if he is hated by her for his profession? 

Cody is very attracted to Julie and really wants to get to know her better.  With her doctor issue is it even worth it?

I like Cody and Julie.  You can feel the chemistry jump off the pages.  On one hand you can understand Julie’s issue with Doctors but since Cody was not even around can she really blame him also?  Love how Cody slowly breaks down her walls one by one. 

 
 

Author Info
 
 
 
 
Cara Connelly is an award-winning author of contemporary romances. Her smart and sexy stories have won high praise, earning Cara several awards including the Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart, the Valley Forge Romance Writers’ Sheila, and the Music City Romance Writers’ Melody of Love. Cara lives in rural upstate New York with her handsome husband Billy and magical rescue dog Bella. Cara is proudly represented by Jill Marsal of the Marsal/Lyon Literary Agency.
Author Links
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6921968.Cara_Connelly

EXCERPT

Outside, a sleety December drizzle came down from a leaden sky. Cars shissed past, spraying sludge. She sprinted next door to the Plaza and marched straight up to the desk. “I’m looking for Dr. Brown,” she informed the pretty brunette with the “Ashley” nametag. “Can you ring his room?”

Ashley broke into a smile. “Oh, Cody’s not in his room. He went down the street to Starbucks.” Looking up over Julie’s shoulder, her smile widened. “Here he comes now. And he’s got my latte. Isn’t he sweet?” She sighed.

Julie turned around. And sure enough, here came Cody, swaggering across the ultra-opulent lobby, a dozen gilt-framed mirrors ricocheting his reflection off every wall. Even if she’d tried, she couldn’t escape the golden hair, the stubbly sun-kissed jaw. She couldn’t ignore the nut-hugger jeans that served up his package on a plate, and the battered leather jacket, unzipped to display a rain-spattered T-shirt plastered to his paving-stone abs.

Ashley sighed again.

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[Blitz & Giveaway] Break My Fall by J.T. Cameron

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Synopsis

When Leah’s ex-boyfriend Kevin betrays her in a horrifically public way, she leaves town to spend her last summer of college in a place where no one knows who she is, what happened to her, and what she did to make herself so vulnerable. All she wants is a little peace of mind and some good surfing so she can regroup before returning for her senior year. After his own tragedy a few years ago, Drew developed an entirely new and unique outlook on life and became a risk-taker, daring and dangerous, everything Leah wanted to avoid. But a chance encounter forces her to let Drew into her life, little by little, secret by secret. He’s smart, funny, persistent, hot, and makes money in a rather unconventional way. They share a mutual fascination and attraction, until her past with Kevin complicates her present with Drew, making Leah question her future. Just as her life seems to be spinning out of control, Leah learns that sometimes you save someone by letting them save you. (New Adult romance)

Excerpt

Drew put his hat on and pulled it down just enough to where I could still see his eyes. He finally answered, and it wasn’t what I expected at all. “You’re the first girl I’ve ever seen surfing around here. I mean really surfing, not just messing around. That interested me. That’s why I talked to you those times. Because you were different. Like me. You’re a risk-taker, but something’s holding you back. Something happened to you. That’s why you’re here. That’s why you mostly keep to yourself. That’s why you have those walls up.” I felt my eyes narrowing in anger. I didn’t like this at all. Everything he was saying was true. And it pissed me off. I slid off the seat and stood. “I have to go.” I started walking toward the door and I had just picked up my surfboard when he said, “Leah, wait. I’m sorry.” I turned around. He got up and moved toward me. “It’s raining like crazy, it’s still windy. At least let me drive you home. I looked out the window and saw that it was still quite blustery. Walking home with this surfboard wouldn’t have been much fun. And it was only a short distance, which meant I wouldn’t have to put up with him for long. I pushed the door open and started to walk out. “Okay. But stop psychoanalyzing me.” He held the door open for me. “Done.”

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Book: Break My Fall
Author: J.T. Cameron
Genre: New Adult
 
 

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[Cover Reveal & Giveaway] Give In To Me by K.M. Scott

Give In To Me by K.M. Scott
Series: Book #3, A Heart of Stone Trilogy
Genre: Erotic Contemporary Romance
Release Date: TBD

Synopsis:

The third book in the Heart of Stone series concludes the sensual and emotional story of Tristan and Nina that began in Crash Into Me and continued in Fall Into Me…

Tristan Stone has lived a life other men would kill for. Literally. But all the money, women, and fast cars mean nothing to him since Nina came into his life. Danger lurks around every turn with enemies wearing friendly faces. Whatever it takes, he’ll protect the woman he loves because without her, life isn’t worth living.

Nina Edwards had no idea of the world Tristan would give her. All her dreams have come true, but with the good comes the bad, and this world of his has more than enough of that. For love, though, she’ll face not only Tristan’s demons but anyone who stands in her way of finally finding happiness with the man she loves.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/19022148-give-in-to-me
Author Bio:

 
A writer for years in other genres, K.M. Scott writes sexy contemporary romances like the ones that she loves. In love with love from the moment she picked up her first romance novel, she considers herself blessed that she has the chance to tell her own characters’ stories now. When she’s not writing, she can be found reading, feeding her addiction to TV, or cooking a new dish for family and friends. She loves to hear from readers, so drop by her Facebook page and say hi or e-mail me at kmscottauthor@gmail.com.

 

Author Contact Info:

 



Other Books in the Series

Crash Into Me by K.M. Scott

Series: Book #1, A Heart of Stone Trilogy

Genre: Erotic Contemporary Romance

Release Date: August 28, 2013

Purchase Links:

Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iTunes | Smashwords

 http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18139089-crash-into-me

 
Synopsis:

What would you give up for everything?

Tristan Stone was powerful, commanding, sex incarnate. And he wore it all so well. From the moment his mesmerizing gaze met mine, I had no choice but surrender to everything he was. His power. His decadence. His passion. He was all I never knew I needed. 

He wanted to possess me, and I wanted to be his everything. All I had to do was accept what he offered. But everything has a price. 

The world he gave me fulfilled my wildest dreams, but would that be enough when the past crashed into the present?

 

Fall Into Me by K.M. Scott

Series: Book #2, A Heart of Stone Trilogy

Genre: Erotic Contemporary Romance

Release Date: November 25, 2013

Purchase Links:

 
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18586603-fall-into-me
 

Synopsis:

Wealthier and more powerful than most men his age, Tristan Stone merely has to give voice to his desires and whatever he wants is his. Money has given him the ability to say nothing and no one is beyond his reach.

Except for Nina. Stripped of her memory after an accident, she doesn’t remember the man who loves her. Now he must find a way to show her why she fell in love with him, but the past is always just a step behind, threatening to take her away forever.

Unsure of everything about the past four years, Nina believes that Tristan loves her. But will the secrets he holds tear them apart just when she needs him most?



 

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[Release Day Blitz & Giveaway] Enslaved By the Ocean by Bella Jewel

Enslaved By the Ocean Cover
Title: Enslaved By the Ocean
Author: Bella Jewel
Expected Release Date: December 9, 2013
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance

 

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https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18625453-enslaved-by-the-ocean

 

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Synopsis

Indigo is running, she has no other choice. She’s done something bad, and there only way to escape it, is to flee her home, and her country. She sets out on a luxury Yacht, to take her to another country with her best friend Eric. But she runs into a problem. The Yacht catches fire. She ends up stranded in the ocean, terrified, and scared of the uncertain. Until they show up. The pirates. Terrified, Indigo and Eric have to face the reality that this might be the end for them. These are pirates, they are the criminals of the ocean. What chance have they got of surviving this nightmare? Then she lays eyes on Hendrix. He’s the Captain, he’s gorgeous, rugged, and mean. He’s planning on keeping her to repay his debt to another man, by selling her. Now Indigo has a crazy ex after her, as well as a pirate she can’t seem to get out of her head. Come on this heart wrenching, dark, angsty and dangerous adventure as two people so opposite, find something so beautiful.

 

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Excerpt

“No,” I scream, shoving him so hard he takes two steps back. “I won’t listen to you. All you’re going to do is make me feel incomplete. Do you know that you can do that? Make someone feel so utterly worthless? You touched me like I mattered, and yet you look at me like I’m a sale. I won’t do it. I don’t deserve it. I don’t…” He’s moving toward me before I can finish, and before I know what’s happening he grips my shoulder and jerks me forward, crushing his lips down on mine. My world stops. My legs give way. Hendrix wraps his arms around my waist, holding me up before parting my shocked frozen lips with his tongue. It only takes a moment for me to respond. My entire body is tingling with warmth, my heart is thumping, and my stomach is full of butterflies. I open my mouth to him, and I let him slide his tongue inside. I connect my tongue with his, and finally, I get to taste him. It’s been worth the wait. His lips, his tongue, his mouth: it’s like heaven. The feeling of his stubble on my cheeks is exactly as I imagined.

 

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About the Author

Bella Jewel is an Aussie girl through and through. She spent her life in Western Australia, growing up in many different areas of the state. She now currently lives in Perth with her husband, children and mass amounts of pets. She’s crazy, fun, outgoing and friendly. Writing is her passion, she started at the young age of 18 but finally got the courage up to publish, and her first novel Hell’s Knights was released in August 2013.

Connect with the Author

Facebook | Website | Goodreads

 

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Giveaway
(2) $50 Amazon Gift Cards

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[Blitz & Giveaway] Little Drummer Boy by Deliza Rafferty

Heat up your holiday for only 99 Cents!
Little Drummer Boy – Vol. 3 of the Savannah Rossi Chronicles
Published Dec. 16, 2012
5,837 words
Erotic Romance

 
Synopsis:
It’s Christmas Eve and sexy singer/songwriter Savannah Rossi has plans to spend the evening at a local jazz club sitting in with a friend’s band. After months of flirtation with the smouldering drummer, she’s also got plans to light his yule log after the gig. Oh cum all ye faithful, it’s the most wonderful time of the year! 

 

*Contains graphic sexual content and strong language.*
 

The Savannah Rossi Chronicles are a series of stand alone short stories/novellas preceding an eventual full length novel that follow the steamy adventures of sexy, independent, musically-gifted singer/songwriter Savannah Rossi, who is teetering on the verge of national success. This is no spoiled brat pop princess looking to be saved. Confident, driven, intelligent and unabashed in her sexuality, Savannah has created her own success and enjoys a vibrant sex life on her own terms with men of her choosing. Is it possible that any one man could tame such an independent free spirit? Who says she even needs to be tamed? Join Savannah on her erotic musical journey to find out! 
Ten volumes total are planned, to be followed up with a full length novel. So don’t worry; Sav will get her HEA!
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Meet The Author
Deliza Rafferty is a new erotic romance writer located in Hollywood. She’s written all sorts of stories and poems for personal enjoyment since she was a little girl, but has spent most of her career in the music business. She is venturing into sharing her musings publicly for the very first time and is excited that modern day technology allows her to do it at her leisure. “Deliza” means “gives pleasure and “Rafferty” means “rich and prosperous.” With a name like that, what else could she do? Well…legally, anyway?
Deliza loves to interact with her readers, so feel free to stalk her all over the interwebz!
WEBSITE   |   FACEBOOK   |   TWITTER   |   GOODREADS   

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[Release Day & Giveaway] Finding Home by Aine Kelley

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Synopsis
 

Can two broken people help each other learn to love again and find their way home? For Samantha Cole, love and relationships have never come easy. Pain and heartbreak have forced her to build a wall around herself. Hoping to start over, Sam leaves Boston behind and moves to Napa with her best friend. Trying to make better choices in love, Sam establishes rules to keep her heart safe. Little does she know that one man will challenge her and change her mind. He has the potential to break down her walls and bring her heart back home. Ben Foster has been dealing with heartache and guilt for the past two years, believing he lost his only chance at love. Pounding guys on the Rugby field and running the family winery get him through the pain. When Sam arrives the fog over his life slowly lifts. He wonders if she is the one who can help his heart find a new way home. Letting go of the past and moving forward is not always easy. Their connection is strong, but their pasts keep getting in the way. Will Sam and Ben’s journey tear them apart or help them find a place to call home?

Meet the Author

I’m a wife, mother, teacher, and now author. Aine Kelley is my pen name for when I take off my ‘super mom’ cloak and write. I’m a Massachusetts native who resides in a small seaside community outside of Boston. Besides my immense love for my hubby and two girls, I’m a huge lover of the Patriots and Red Sox! I’m a one click addict and love getting lost in a great story. I can be wooed or bought, depending the situation, with wine and chocolate. Like Samantha in my book, I’m a huge 80’s movie lover and a music freak! My love of books, beta reading for authors and reviewing for a blog, led me down the writing path. My motto is: Live freely, laugh heartily and love deeply.

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[Blitz & Giveaway] Forever, Jack by Natasha Boyd


Forever, Jack by Natasha Boyd
Eversea #2
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance


Synopsis:

A feisty small-town girl and the Hollywood star who broke her heart

An all-consuming love threatened by fame

One last chance at FOREVER

Keri Ann Butler’s life changed on the night she met movie star, Jack Eversea. She thought she knew a Jack that was very different to the man adored by fans the world over. In the wake of his betrayal and abandonment, Keri Ann has had to pick up and move forward with the life she was supposed to live and has put off far too long.

Suddenly Jack is back, and his explanations for why he left seem more and more plausible, and his declarations more seductive. But being Jack’s latest tabloid accessory isn’t on Keri Ann’s career agenda, no matter how much she is attracted to him. And how can she can ever trust him again?

Jack knows he let the only ‘real’ thing that ever happened to him slip through his fingers. And his hands have been tied to try and stop it. Until Now.

Jack is now fighting to save his relationship with Keri Ann, even as his crazy life threatens to tear them apart. Again. The question is, can he convince her she can have it all? And have him? Forever?

Read how it all began in “Eversea“…

 

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18077900-forever-jack?ac=1


Purchase:


AMAZON 

 

 

AUTHOR BIO:

Natasha Boyd is a writer with a background in marketing and public relations. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, and lives in the coastal Carolina Lowcountry, complete with Spanish moss, alligators and mosquitoes the size of tiny birds.  She has a husband, two sons and a host of scared relatives that worry the next book will be about them.  She is a member of Georgia Romance Writers, Romance Writers of America and Island Writers Network, where she has been a featured speaker. Forever, Jack is the sequel to her award-winning and first full-length novel, Eversea. 

 

twitter @lovefrmlowcntry

instagram @lovefrmlowcntry

 


EXCERPT

 

Jack wasn’t wearing his ball cap, and the breeze ruffled his darker, longer hair.

It seemed laughable now, that I would have waited until tomorrow morning to find out what he was doing back here. I cocked my head. “You realize this qualifies as seriously creepy.”

I thought I saw his mouth lift slightly on one side.

“I couldn’t sleep and thought walking would help. And well, I ended up here.” Jack shrugged, his hands still wedged in his jeans. His soft, deep voice that I knew so well, that the world knew so well, was a smooth melody over the jagged rasping of the cicadas. “I didn’t know you’d be awake.”

You just showed back up in my life, how could I be sleeping? I bit down, holding my teeth together to keep from inviting him in. “Why couldn’t you sleep?” I asked eventually.

“Why couldn’t you?” he returned.

My skin got warm. “I was sleeping.”

Barely.

I imagined I saw his eyes narrow. “But Jazz texted and woke me,” I added. Not technically a lie.

Jack nodded, pursing his lips and rocked back on his heels. I could see more details now that my eyes were accustomed to the night and the clouds continued clearing the sky. He was wearing dark jeans and a snug dark t-shirt. His eyes hadn’t left me. I reached up and smoothed my hair, tucking an errant strand back in the direction of my messy braid, wondering what on earth I looked like after tossing and turning for the last few hours.

“Stop.”

I paused.

“You’re beautiful.”

My blood pressure rose. I clamped my jaw tight again. My upbringing dictated I thank him, but a wave of anger, no … make that pure and utter pissed-off-ness, almost choked me. “You can’t even see me,” I snorted. “Nice try. What do you want anyway?”

“I don’t need to see you to know you’re beautiful.”

Well, didn’t that knock an oyster out of its shell? What was he playing at? “Seriously, what do you want, Jack? You need someone to buy your groceries or something?” My acidic tone left no doubt about how I felt.

His shoulders moved almost imperceptibly, and I had the thought he’d either let out a long sigh or he was at a loss as to what to say, and was about to give up and turn around. “Can I come in?” he asked so quietly, I almost didn’t hear him. “I’d like to talk to you.”

 

 

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[Blitz & Giveaway] Beyond by S.P. van der Lee

Beyond (Beyond)
Release date: November 25th 2013
Summary from Goodreads:
Sixteen-year-old Raven desperately wants to fit in, but after using a Ouija Board, her already overwhelming hallucinations take a turn for the worse. A ghostly figure named Sam begins to haunt Raven and seems eager to kill her.
She’s saved by a reclusive biker named Damian who goes to the same school and appears to have an interest in her. Raven can’t help but feel drawn to him. Determined to uncover Damian’s connection to the ghost, Raven sets out to discover his secret and the reason Sam started haunting her. However, there’s more at stake than just her reputation. Raven’s choice between unveiling Damian’s true intentions, and living a normal life will put everyone she cares about at risk. To save them, she’ll have to go beyond.

Lives are ruined.
Hearts are shattered.
Death lurks at every corner.

 

 
Available from:
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Check out the trailer here!

“I loved the premise of the book & I loved the characters. The ending left me wanting more…” ~ Lisa W.
“Finally this ends my dry spell of unsatisfying fantasy novels! I loved the plot! I can’t help but get hooked into it as the story unfolds.” ~ Poecilia from Goodreads
“The book is very good. It has really good mystery in it and a cliffhanger in the end that leaves you screaming for the second book.” ~ Katie from Goodreads
About the Author
I am a writer and reader of YA Paranormal Romance novels and aspire to be a well known author. I love reading the same genre, as well as Dystopian and an occasional fantasy book. In my spare time, when I’m not reading books, I like to play games such as RPG’s.

I have a bachelor in Digital Communication and enjoy pretty much anything that has to do with technology 🙂


BEYOND will be published on November 25th 2013. I’m currently available for Promos, spotlights, reviews, interviews, guest posts, you name it! Just send me a message 🙂


Author Links:
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Excerpt:

Never before have I felt such fear, suffocating and unrelenting. If my heart continues to beat the way it is, I might die. My hallucinations have never taken the form of a humanlike figure before. Just thinking about the smoke he emitted makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up.

The only things I’ve ever seen were items being moved around or floating lights, which made people think I was nuts. But just now, at the party, I saw a real shady figure, and he moved the wooden arrow.

I pedal as fast as I can. I can’t look back, because I’m afraid I might see something that will make my heart stop. I have to get out of here.

Simon and Emma are yelling at me from Lillian’s home, but I’m not listening to what they’re saying. I just tell myself that everything has been a fantasy, even though it still bothers me. Hallucinations should only affect me, not my surroundings. They’re not supposed to be able to touch a Ouija board.

Calm down, Raven. Maybe my pills will work.

I pull the brakes and come to a stop so quick that I have to put both feet on the ground so I don’t fall over. I grab my bag and rummage through it, looking for the bottle. The pills that reduce the intensity of my hallucinations should be in there. My mom always makes me take them along wherever I go.

But they’re not in my bag. How could I have forgotten them? How could I have been so stupid? In my haste to get to the party I must’ve forgotten to pack them. What do I do without my meds?

I throw my bag on the ground and exhale a few times before picking it up again. I snort and brush away the sweat from my forehead. Well, nothing I can do about it now. I’ll have to get home as quick as I can.

I hop on my mountain bike again and force myself to pedal. It isn’t real. My head is playing tricks. I’m me, not my delusions.

They’re all fake.

I bike across the road and swallow a couple of times. Maybe the anxiety will go away then. I check my surroundings to assure myself that everything I see is beyond a doubt there and not all in my head.

Then I see them, a group of figures in the cemetery.

Only they aren’t just figures. Shadows are watching me.

Their faces are smooth and unwavering. Their eyes are hollow. Surrounding them is a black and white mist-like fog. The people all look different, but with one similarity; I can see right through them.

I shriek and peddle as hard as my feet will allow me, past the cemetery. I’m going nuts. I see things that aren’t really there. Delusions that are so terrifying I feel like I’m going to faint again. This isn’t real. It can´t be! I’m trying to convince myself.

Tears roll down my face, and my lungs burn. The warmth of my overheated body makes my soaking wet clothes prickle against my skin. I’m heaving, totally out of breath.

In the forest beside me, I spot the shades again. They’re everywhere. At least, I think, but they don’t look like just shadows anymore. They look like real people.

Am I hallucinating about ghosts? Their black and white glow is as clear as daylight in the darkness.  The lampposts light the cement path. At first I think the entities are staring into nothing, but then they chase after me.

I bike even harder, but my thighs burn. I’m already past my limit. I steal a glimpse, and the floating ghosts are still following me, floating.

“Stop! Stop it!” I scream and close my eyes, hoping they will disappear, but when I open them again they’re still there.

One of the ghosts drifts closer. It moves so fast, I’m unable to spot it until it’s in my face with its mouth open.

I shriek and flap my hands, hoping to push the attacker away, but it doesn’t work. It’s already gone. The shadow went right through me.

I’m wobbling so much I lose my balance and fall off my bike. My head hits the asphalt, surging burning pain to the side of my skull. I’m dizzy, and everything around me fades to black.

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[Blitz & Giveaway] The Most Wonderful Time of the Year by Marie Landry

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year
Release Date: 11/05/13
Summary from Goodreads:
Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, right? At least that’s what twenty-year-old Ginny Bailey’s grandmother always told her, and Ginny believed it until Grama died. She even put on a brave face the following two Christmases, carrying on Grama’s traditions and decorating her house and café with Grama’s favorite decorations.

But Ginny can’t pretend any longer. When she finds out she’s going to be alone for the holidays this year, her Christmas spirit goes out the window, along with her luck. Everything that can go wrong does, and Ginny just wants to spend the holidays hiding under the covers…until Dean Riley comes back into her life. With their shared past, old feelings begin to resurface almost immediately, and Ginny thinks Dean might just be the Christmas miracle she’s been waiting for to help her remember why Christmas really is the most wonderful time of the year.


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What people are saying about The Most Wonderful Time of the Year:
“While The Most Wonderful Time of the Year is a quick read, it is an adorable one. This story shows the value of friends and family and the importance they have in our lives, no matter what time of the year it is…If you’re looking for a well-written, heartwarming story for those cold days, pick this up.”
~ Jessica Sankiewicz, author of If Only We
“Marie Landry delivered the perfect little holiday novella with The Most Wonderful Time of the Year. It has a small-town coffee shop, memories of Christmas with Grandma, snowballs, hot cocoa and a yummy man from our heroine’s past. Mini review: romantic, sweet and filled with holiday spirit.”
The Most Wonderful Time of Year was quick and sweet, just how I like my holiday reads.”
~ Christy from Love of Books
About the Author
Marie Landry is the author of BLUE SKY DAYS (contemporary YA—January 2012), THE GAME CHANGER (women’s fiction—November 2012), WAITING FOR THE STORM (contemporary YA—April 2013), and THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR (a new adult holiday novella-November 2013). Marie has always been a daydreamer; since early childhood, she’s had a passion for words and a desire to create imaginary worlds, so it only seemed natural for her to become a writer. She resides in Ontario, Canada, and most days you can find her writing, reading, blogging about writing and reading, listening to U2, wandering around with a camera in her hand, watching copious amounts of TV on DVD, or having grand adventures with her nephews and niece.

Author Links:
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Excerpt: Full first chapter

 

‘Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree’ came over the speakers in the café, and I smiled, humming along to the jazzy song. It was one of my favourites, but then again I had a lot of favourite holiday songs.

 

I added a dollop of whipped cream and shook some red and green sprinkles onto the peppermint mocha latté I’d just made. I carefully pressed a lid into place before setting the hot drink on the counter. “Here you go, Mrs. Sanders.”

 

“Thank you, dear.” Mrs. Sanders tucked a loose white curl under her crocheted hat. She was in her seventies, and had a sweet tooth like I’d never seen. She volunteered at the used clothing store down the street, and on any given day would pop into the café two or three times for a sugary drink or a freshly baked goodie.

 

Mrs. Sanders’ gaze swept over the café. “The place is looking wonderful, Ginny,” she told me, a warm smile lighting her grey eyes. “Looks just like it did when your grandma owned the place and decorated for the holidays.”

 

I swallowed the lump that always formed in my throat when someone mentioned Grama. “I’m really happy to hear you say that,” I replied, managing a small smile. “Christmas was always her favourite time of year.”

 

“Don’t I know it.” Mrs. Sanders chuckled and shook her head. “She’d be up in that attic of yours fishing around for Christmas decorations as soon as Halloween was over.” Her smile dimmed slightly, turning wistful. “I’m glad she passed her love for the holidays on to you. It’s nice to have someone to keep up those traditions and add in some new life.”

 

I nodded, swallowing compulsively around that stupid growing lump in my throat. It had been three years since Grama passed away, but I still felt her loss as if it were yesterday. She’d been so much more than my guardian—she was my best friend and confidant, the one person who loved me unconditionally and supported me no matter what. She’d also been a huge part of the community; she had a seat on town council, and had owned what was once the only café in town until a Tim Horton’s moved in near the mall.

 

“I do it for her.” I knew Mrs. Sanders would understand the slight tremor in my voice that I couldn’t control. “Because of her, I’ve believed in the magic of Christmas for as long as I can remember. It was always the best time of year growing up. Everything just seems different around Christmas. Like anything could happen, you know?”

 

Mrs. Sanders still wore that soft, wistful smile. “Now you sound just like her. She was always talking about the magic of Christmas. She’d be really proud of you, Ginny.”

 

This time my smile was genuine. I knew Mrs. Sanders missed Grama too. They had been friends most of their lives, and Mrs. Sanders was one of the few people who freely talked about Grama around me. Most of the other people in town seemed to think I’d shatter into a million pieces at the mere mention of her. “Thank you.”

 

The older woman nodded and reached for her wallet, but I waved her away. “It’s on me today. Enjoy.”

 

Mrs. Sanders patted my hand where it rested on the counter, then pulled on her leather gloves and tugged the collar of her coat up around her neck. “I’ll see you tomorrow, dear.”

 

I watched her go, then glanced around the café as Mrs. Sanders had done a few moments earlier. Most of the decorations were Grama’s, but I’d added a few over the years. There was a small artificial tree in every corner, decorated with lights and the mismatched ornaments Grama and I had been collecting or making since I was a child. Star-shaped lights hung in the big windows on either side of the door, and the fireplace was adorned with stockings that were almost filled with donated toys for the local yearly toy drive.

 

I made my way around the counter, smiling at the people scattered at tables and on couches around the café. It was one of the quietest times of day; the after work rush had finished and most people were home having dinner. Things would pick up again around seven, when a lot of folks liked to drop in for coffee or dessert, or grab a snack on their way to the movies.

 

I collected dirty mugs and plates before wiping down tables, all the while humming along to the carols playing on the stereo. I was surprised to find almost every empty table held a tip. People didn’t often leave tips, and if they did it was in the fancy jar by the cash register. I scooped the money into the pocket of my Christmassy apron, enjoying the musical jingling sound as the change and bills accumulated.

 

I was heading back to the counter when the front door flew open, sending the bells overhead into a tinkling frenzy and a gust of wintry air into the café. I turned and smiled when I saw my best friend, Clara, sweep inside, stamping her booted feet and shaking the hood of her coat.

 

“Is that snow?” I rushed through the café to the window. I nearly pressed my face against the cool pane when I saw that it was, indeed, snowing softly. We’d hardly had any snow yet this winter, and as Christmas drew nearer I was afraid we weren’t going to get any. Christmas wasn’t Christmas without snow.

 

“I’ll be right back, everyone,” I called to no one in particular as I grabbed Clara’s hand and pulled her back outside.

 

“What are you doing?” Clara asked. “Where’s your coat? You’re going to freeze!”

 

Ignoring her, I stood on the sidewalk and turned my face toward the sky. Fat snowflakes fell, melting instantly as they touched my skin, which was overheated from being close to the fire while bussing tables. An uncontrollable smile spread over my face, and I closed my eyes, letting the flakes cool my eyelids, cheeks, and forehead.

 

“You’re a loon, you know that?” Something warm settled over my shoulders, and I opened my eyes to see that Clara had taken off her coat and draped it over both of us. She looped her arm through mine and pressed against me, pulling her half of the coat around her as much as she could.

 

“I know,” I answered easily. “But you know how much I love snow.”

 

“I do, which is why I stopped in. I figured you’d be busy and might not have seen it yet.”

 

“That’s why you came by?” I asked, surprised and touched.

 

“Well, yeah.” Clara shrugged. “I was leaving the library when it started, so I figured rather than call I’d just come up the street and see you. I know I haven’t been around much lately.”

 

It was true. Clara had been dating a guy named Bobby since summer, and they were nearly inseparable. I’d gone from seeing my best friend all the time to practically having to make an appointment just to have a conversation with her. It had been hard on me, and at times it felt like our friendship was scarcely bearing the weight of the strain. None of that seemed to matter right now, though. She was here, it was snowing, and everything seemed right with the world, even if it was only for a few minutes.

 

“Thanks for coming.” I turned my face back to the sky. I didn’t want to talk about Clara’s absence lately.

 

“Well, I knew…” Clara’s voice trailed off and she shifted closer to me. I glanced at her and saw she was staring resolutely at the sky, her jaw tight, and tears glistening in her eyes.

 

“Don’t,” I pleaded.  “Please don’t.”

 

She jerked her head back and forth, and one lone tear slipped down her cheek. “I’m sorry,” she said quickly. “I swore I wouldn’t. I told myself all the way over here that if I started to cry, I’d never forgive myself, but I just can’t help it.”

 

I let out a quiet groan as I felt the lump return to my throat. Clara and I had grown up together, so she’d known Grama forever, and felt her loss almost as acutely as I did. She’d been the one who had mourned with me, held my hand when I needed comfort, cried with me, and shared stories from our childhood.

 

Clara took a deep breath and slid her hand down my arm to grip my hand tightly. “She was like a little kid when it snowed,” she said quietly. I couldn’t look at her for fear I’d start crying, but I could hear the smile in her voice now, and it calmed me a bit.

 

“I remember you telling me about how she’d drag you outside during the first snow, no matter where you were, what you were doing, or what time it was,” she continued. “Like that time when you were six and it started snowing in the middle of the night and she dragged you out of bed to see it. I don’t think I really believed you until the next year when I was sleeping over and she woke us up at 3 a.m., bundled us into our coats, and took us outside.”

 

I laughed shakily at the memory. It was one of my favourites. I could still remember us throwing our coats, hats, mittens, and boots on over our pajamas and following Grama outside. The three of us stood on the huge front lawn, holding hands, and staring up at the sky as fat snowflakes fell around us.

 

Clara squeezed my hand, drawing me back to the present. “I think someone wants a refill.” She pointed over her shoulder at the woman waiting patiently near the counter with an empty mug.

 

“Shoot.” I started to slip Clara’s coat off, but she swung it off her shoulders instead and wrapped it around me.

 

“I’ll go. You enjoy the snow for another few minutes.” She paused with her hand on the doorknob and gave me a small, sad smile. “I swear I feel her out here, Gin.”

 

She hurried inside before I could reply—or before either of us could burst into tears and spend the next half hour blubbering on the sidewalk in the snow. I watched her for a second as she spoke to the woman at the counter, smiling brightly and tossing her golden hair over her shoulder. I felt a swell of affection for her that nearly took my breath away, and I turned away quickly before I really did start to cry.

 

While there were a few people who understood that I was still mourning the loss of my grandmother even after all this time, Clara was the only person who I felt really got it. She’d been like a sister to me growing up, and I’d happily shared Grama with her.

 

Christmas was the hardest time of year for me since it had been Grama’s favourite, but I’d promised myself I would celebrate it just like we always had. I swore I would hold on to the magic of the season, the way she’d taught me. I turned my face to the sky once again and closed my eyes. The snowflakes slowed, touching my cheeks gently like angel kisses. Clara was right; I could feel Grama here too.
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[Blitz & Giveaway] Sworn To Conflict by Terah Edun

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Title: Sworn To Conflict
Author: Terah Edun
Series: Courtlight #3
Publication date: December 6th 2013
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

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Summary:

Ciardis Weathervane fought for the living dead and won. But worse than taking on a mass murderer, was her discovery that she had been deceived by her friends. Now she needs to not only fight a war in the North and survive, but also decide where she stands in the midst of competing sides. A threat to all she holds dear lies in the North and her heart is not the only thing she might lose. A massive army awaits in the mountain pass, surging closer to the gates of the southern lands. Nothing the Algardis army has done so far has dissuaded their march forward and Ciardis finds out that her powers to enhance are needed now more than ever. As she faces her greatest fears on the battlefields and her heart is torn between her love of Sebastian and loyalty to her family, Ciardis must choose her fate carefully. For in her path, lies the destiny of the empire. This third novel continues the story of Ciardis Weathervane from Sworn To Transfer.

Connect With Terah: Author Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads
Series Order Links:

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Are you new to the Courtlight series? Well, you can grab the first book, as well as five other amazing Young Adult books, for less than the price of a Starbucks latte! That’s right, I’m offering Sworn To Raise in a new multi-author YA bundle with six authors from bestselling teen book series! With 155 5-Star reviews and a regular price of $9.99, this Young Adult Paranormal, Fantasy and Romance bundle can’t be beat. So start it today!

From High Action Fantasy To Contemporary Romance, This Six-In-One Author Bundle Has Something For Every Teen On Your List.
Six full-length novels.
Six authors with bestselling romance, fantasy & paranormal series.
On sale for $0.99 – Limited time offer!
 
Alexia Purdy – Ever Fire
Bria Quinlan – Secret Girlfriend
Kelly Walker – Severed Stone
R.H. D’aigle – Shifting
Terah Edun – Sworn To Raise
CL Stone – The Academy

International Giveaway for Sworn To Conflict is below!

Terah is giving away signed copies and swag for the Courtlight series. There are 20 total winners!
 
 
 
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