Thursday, February 26, 2015

#REVIEW: Highland Guard (Murray Family #20) by Hannah Howell

When Lady Annys McQueen sends word that she, her people and her lands are in dire assistance from a hostile takeover by her deceased husband's family, she isn't prepared to come face to face with the man that made her feel like she never in her life felt before, the man who gave her the treasure she hold dearly everyday. 

Sir Harcourt Murray, a most honorable man, appears as quickly as he can to protect Lady Annys and her people. When he sees her again, the yearning that he had for her returns full force and is difficult to put aside. Now he not only must protect Annys and her people, but the young son Benet, who she holds more dear than anything in her life. 

For me, any Hannah Howell book is a must read. I do really enjoy them. Highland Guard has a very good premise but it was a bit drawn out for me. Sir Harcourt Murray is a wonderful character with so many endearing qualities, Annys however started to wear on me. I love the Murrays with their honor and loyalty to one another, but this book didn't give me the usual rapor I have come to love so much. I still am a huge fan of Ms. Howell's and would never miss anything she writes. This story was a good read and still passes inspection.


Monday, February 23, 2015

REVIEW: The Deputy's Redemption (Sweetwater Ranch #5) by Delores Fossen

Deputy Colt MacKinnon's mother is charged with murdering her lover, but his childhood sweetheart remembers seeing Colt's father at the scene and this throws a wrench into the prosecution's case. When Colt finds Elise literally running for her life through the woods, his past comes to bite him right in the butt. Elise at first thinks that Colt wants her dead, but when it's discovered there is an elaborate scheme going on to turn things upside down, Elise needs to come to terms with what she actually saw, and who will benefit from her demise.

Colt and Elise has feelings for one another so many years ago, but this murder comes between them and throws them all for a loop. Now Colt feels he must protect Elise, even if it means his father could be arrested for murder. The more Elise and Colt are in each other's presence, the more those old feelings for one another become new, and before they know it, there is no turning the clock back.
Finding the truth and staying alive are paramount in this action packed story that gets closer to getting to the bottom of that murder that has been driving a wedge through  families. 

THE DEPUTY'S REDEMPTION by Delores Fossen is a fast paced mystery from beginning to end. I love how Colt's and Elise's attraction form one another survives all the strife of the past fourteen years. The puzzle pieces of this case are finally coming closer together and waiting for the resolution is making me bite my nails, as I am sure is exactly what Delores Fossen wants. This installment of the Sweetwater Ranch series is a gem and should be savored by all.


Friday, February 20, 2015

#REVIEW: Wild Horses (The Montana Hamiltons #1) by B.J. Daniels

This first book in the Montana Hamiltons series, by B.J. Daniels, WILD HORSES is the perfect segue from the beloved Beartooth Montana series.

Livie Hamilton ran off after an argument with her fiance Cooper Burnett. The hardworking man has a chip on his shoulder, the size of Beartooth, Montana, about allowing Livie's rich daddy from assisting them in any way, hence causing more than a few rifts between Cooper and the Hamiltons. This time when Livie runs off, however, she puts herself in danger and doesn't know how to handle the consequences of her actions. Now the pregnant Livie isn't sure whether the love of her life fathered her child, or the man who saved her from a car wreck where she blacked out after he brought her to "safety". The worst thing yet, someone is sending her blackmail letters making her fear not only for her life, but for the lives of all those she loves.

Cooper Burnett hasn't had a stellar upbringing, but he is a determined and honorable man. When he finds out that Livie is being blackmailed, he will stop at nothing to protect her, even when she tells him that he may not be the father of the child she carries. The man truly loves her, even if many think he's only out for the Hamilton fame and fortune.

It seems that some people close to them would much rather have the two apart for their own devious purposes, but until Cooper and Livie realize that betrayal is closer than either of them know, things become more dangerous than ever. With a killer on the loose, and Cooper now a prime suspect, it's going to take more than the love he and Livie have for one another to get to the bottom of the treachery surrounding them. 

YES! This is definitely a B.J. Daniels book! Mystery? CHECK. Murder and Mayhem? CHECK? A wonderfully solid story? CHECK. i was a very sad reader when the Beartooth, Montana series came to its close, but the fresh Montana Hamiltons is a whole new realm of trouble that I do not want to miss. Each new character ads a new facet to the Beartooth. Montana surroundings and the fact that my favorite characters, the awesome sheriff Frank  and the  reformed busy body, Nettie are still very much a part of the story, makes me a very happy reader. There is no such thing as disappointment where there is a B.J. Daniels book, and WILD HORSES is no exception. WILD HORSES by B.J. Daniels is gripping and exciting and should be read by all.


Wednesday, February 18, 2015


Hi, Kimberly!  So glad you enjoyed AGAINST THE WILD.  I think you’re going to like Nick Brodie and Samantha in AGAINST THE SKY.   I think this one has a lot of heart.  I was really happy with the book when I finished.  Big sigh, hated to see it end.  Thanks so much for having me on Romance at Random.  Love ya, kat
Please tell us a bit about Against the Sky.
AGAINST THE SKY is the second book in my Brodies of Alaska Trilogy, the 11th novel in my Against Series.  

The hero, Nick Brodie, a former Anchorage homicide detective, is a guy with a serious case of burnout.  He wants a new life, something that doesn't include violence and death.  Unfortunately for Nick, when his neighbor, twelve-year-old Jimmy Evans, comes to him battered and beaten, claiming his father was murdered, Nick has no choice but to help him.

To make matters worse, Nick has a lady friend visiting from San Francisco.  Samantha Hollis, owner of the Perfect Pup pet grooming parlor, isn't cut out for the harsh life of Alaska.  Unwillingly swept into Jimmy's problems, she finds herself on a wild ride with Nick that leads them into passion and terrible danger. 

What is your inspiration for this series? 
The setting for the books--Alaska--was my inspiration.  Just being in such an amazing place sent my creative juices into overdrive.  I was there for a month, traveling in the back of a small pickup camper.  (2nd trip).  Very rugged conditions--and I would do it again in a heartbeat.
How much research did you have to do?
I did a lot for all three books.  I find that writing contemporary novels takes as much research, in a different way, as an historical.  In AGAINST THE SKY, Nick comes up against the Russian mob.  The story involves drug smuggling and underage prostitution.  I can tell you, I was on some VERY interesting websites.
How many more books will be in the Brodies of Alaska series?
There are three Alaska books all together.  AGAINST THE WILD, AGAINST THE SKY, and AGAINST THE TIDE.  I really fell in love with all three of the Brodie brothers.   Nick is amazing and Rafe…well, he’s another sexy Brodie hunk. 
Do you have a favorite hero in this series? (could be past or to come)
I really love Nick Brodie.  He has so much heart.  Nick’s a former Ranger and an ex- homicide detective, tough as nails, yet he’s a sucker for home and family.  I really loved that about him.  Plus he’s six foot two with a perfect body, black hair, and incredible blue eyes.  How much better can a hero get?
Where will your fans get to see you this coming year?
One of the things I’ll be doing in 2015 is signing books on April 11 in Boonsboro, Maryland.  I’ll be at Nora Roberts’ bookstore, Turn the Page.  I think there will be five authors all together, signing for the day.  I’m traveling to Europe this summer so I won’t be at as many conferences as I usually am.  Though I will probably add some trips later.  Readers can always find me on Facebook at Katmartin/author and I’d love for them to stop by my new webpage
What is your favorite thing to do in your downtime?
I love to travel.  I love staying at expensive hotels and eating gourmet food.  Fortunately, I live in Montana where there are very few of those kinds of places.  I’m really looking forward to our upcoming trip to Europe where I’ll get to indulge myself.   
Thanks so much for answering these questions, Kat. Happy New Year!
Have a great 2015!  Love ya, kat

Friday, February 13, 2015


Get Lucky Anthology

What happens when six romance authors get together and write half a dozen brand-new, steamy, Irish-themed novellas? Everyone gets lucky! This 99-cent box set crosses genres and includes contemporary romance, new adult romance and paranormal romance novellas that will give Get Lucky a whole new meaning. Pre-order your copy today!

The Get Lucky Anthology features:

From USA Today bestselling author Nicola Marsh - Walking the Line
Finn Ahearns Irish luck is about to run out
Reformed Aussie bad girl Ellie is a decade older than Finn but that doesnt stop the charming Irishman from wooing her. Ellie doesnt believe in the happily-ever-after dream any longer, not since hers imploded a long time ago. But can a smooth-talking Irishman sway a hard-hearted cynic to believe in love again?

From reader favorite Kelsey Browning - Amazed by You
Falling again for your first love...this time for keeps.
Authors assistant Olivia McLaughlin must pull off an extravagant St. Patricks Day garden party to win a coveted promotion, but her success hinges on landscape designer Cody Kavanaugh, her old high school boyfriend. Now, Olivia must decide which she cant live withoutthe job that will make her a success or the man offering her a second chance at love.

From sizzling hot and bestselling Robin Covington - One Little Kiss
The best things start with one little kiss.
Trapped by a snowstorm in the same place at the same time, Leighton and Jonas must decide if their hot night together was the end of their story or if they started forever with just one little kiss

From RT Book Review Award nominee Avery Flynn - Big, Bad Red
She always gets her wolf...
Theres nothing little or naive about this Red Riding Hood. Red runs the biggest fencing operation for fairytale treasures out of the back of Grannys Pub. But when she comes into possession of the Caladbolg sword things get hairyas in hot, sexy Liam MacTíre the werewolf hairy.

From paranormal darling Sara Humphreys - Luck of the Irish
A leprechaun is powerless without his gold.
Banished to the mirrored realm for hundreds of years, Declan Aherne had nothing but time to plot his revenge and mourn the loss of his beloved wife. But when a beautiful human woman, with a familiar amulet, stares into the mirror....Declan's luck was about to change.

From the sexy sweet Kimberly Kincaid - Something Borrowed
Her best friend is the best man for the job
When her successful brother announces his plans for an impromptu wedding in Ireland, unlucky-in-love chef Sasha Arrington is stuck between the Blarney Stone and a hard place. Sasha needs a wingman for her brothers wedding, and the romantic destination could be just what James Sullivan needs to tempt Sasha out of the friend zone.

Are you ready to Get Lucky? Pre-order today!

B&N: coming soon

Thursday, February 12, 2015


Can a hero lurk in the heart of a villain?
Life in a small village is too quiet, too ordinary for a free spirit like Lucy Forbes. When her father lands a job out West, she packs her books and her dreams and eagerly sets off to pursue romantic adventures she’s only read about. But the moment she sets foot in Kansas, she is thrust into the gritty reality of an untamed frontier and into the arms of a scoundrel.
Henry Stevens, the ruthless railroad chief her father has been sent to investigate, is as passionate as he is ambitious, brave and charming, as well as cunning and controlling. However, his opponents are vanishing and strangers and trying to kill him. Fearing for her father’s life, Lucy resolves to unmask the secretive Mr. Stevens and expose a villain. What she doesn’t expect to find is a hero.

E.E. Burke writes romance from the heart, woven with history the way it really happened in the old American West. Her work has received accolades in numerous contests, including the RWA’s prestigious Golden Heart®.
You can reach her on:

Hello and Welcome to Book Obsessed Chicks E.E. It's so great to have you here on the blog. Would you please tell us a little bit about yourself?
Thanks for having me as a guest today. I write historical romance in American settings, and have recently released my third book, A Dangerous Passion, which is part of the series, Steam! Romance and Rails.
Over the years, I’ve been a disc jockey, a journalist and an advertising executive, before finally getting around to pursuing my dream of writing novels. I’ve been fortunate enough to win and place in various contests, but my proudest writing achievement is being a finalist in the 2010 RWA Golden Heart® contest.
Besides reading and spending time with my family, I love to wander around museums. I’ll explore just about any historical museum and I dearly love spending time in art museums. I also love to travel. Anywhere. I’ll find something interesting any place I visit because there are always connections with the past.

 Tell us how A Dangerous Passion came to be.
Something about railroads calls to my romantic nature. Maybe it’s the passion and excitement of a long-ago era when America expanded its boundaries as fast as men could lay track. I wanted to give readers a glimpse into that exciting time period, and that’s how the idea came about for the series Steam! Romance and Rails.
Being a history geek, I dove eagerly into research to find inspiration for my series. I enjoy weaving real events and people into my stories, so that readers will feel they’ve been transported back in time and are reliving history.
The main character Henry Stevens was inspired by the actual general manager of the Katy Railroad, Robert S. Stevens. Described as a man with “dark flashing eyes and meticulous style of dress,” he was a larger-than-life persona in the history of this legendary railroad.
In 1870, Stevens was brought in by the Katy’s president Judge Levi Parsons to help build a railroad empire that stretched from Chicago all the way down to Mexico City. They didn’t get quite that far, but the Katy’s birth and impressive growth is largely attributable to Stevens, who took a “never surrender” approach to just about everything he attempted. Many of the events in this book are based on exploits written about this fascinating man and the railroad he built.
Another historical tidbit featured in A Dangerous Passion is a series of mysterious murders that took place near Parsons, Kansas, during the early 1870s. From a period stretching between 1871 and early 1873, numerous travelers through southeastern Kansas were reported missing. There were theories as to what happened to them, including one rumor that the railroads were to blame.
When a well-known doctor went missing, his brother, a U.S. Senator tore through the area on a frantic search. Authorities ultimately discovered nearly a dozen bodies (including the doctor’s) buried in a field behind a cabin that doubled as a wayside inn serving meals to travelers.
A Dangerous Passion is my latest addition to the series Steam! Romance and Rails. There are two preceding books. Here’s a recap:
Passion's Prize follows three women who must contend with dangerous men caught up in a cutthroat railroad race. This trilogy was conceived and written with Jacqui Nelson and Jennifer Jakes, who made the finals of the RWA’s Golden HeartÓ contest the same year I did with Western historical romances.
Her Bodyguard features a railroad promoter who hires protection in the midst of settlers’ riots. But her handsome bodyguard may pose the greatest threat.
The three novels are connected through an event, the construction of the railroads, and a theme, passion colliding with ambition. This plays out with different characters in different stories, although you do see characters appear in each other’s stories. For instance, we first meet Henry, the hero in A Dangerous Passion, as an antagonist in Passion’s Prize. The books can be read in order, as a series, but don’t have to be. Each will stand on its own.

 What are you currently working on?
I’m writing the next novel in the series, featuring characters I introduce in A Dangerous Passion. From there, I may venture to other railroads and new stories. It’s the kind of series that could continue to evolve through many more books, as long as readers stay interested. 

 Did you always want to be a writer? If not, what did you want to be?
I love telling stories, always have. When I was in high school, I seriously considered pursuing writing as a profession, and in college ended up in journalism. Somehow the whole storytelling dream got sidetracked through a career that took me into marketing and advertising. At some point, I realized I hadn’t done what I dreamed of doing, writing stories, and so I set out to get back on that path. If I hadn’t chosen writing novels, I would’ve pursued some other artistic endeavor…like comic books. J

 Who was your favorite character to write and why?
My favorite is always who I’m writing about at the moment. I love my characters so much I get very involved with them. For A Dangerous Passion, Henry was a blast to write. He’s the villain who longs to be a hero. I adore dark heroes. Lucy hauls books around in her satchel. They’re her BFFs. She longs to be independent, to pursue adventure and write stories, yet conflicting loyalties pull at her. She struggles to balance everything, as women often do when we chase that “impossible’” dream.

 Who are your role models/favorite authors? If so, who?
In terms of writers who’ve influenced me, I’ll start with Mark Twain. He’s the quintessential American novelist and his books and short stories captured the historic American personality on many different levels. I fell in love with American literature at an early age by reading about Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn.
The romance authors who’ve inspired and influenced my writing are too numerous to name. I’ll list a few whose historical romances were inspirational when I wrote my second novel, which made the finals in the RWA’s 2010 Golden HeartÓ contest. Jill Marie Landis, Kristen Hannah, Lisa Kleypas, Julie Garwood, LaVyrle Spencer, Kathleen Woodiwiss, Dorothy Garlock – did I say a few? J

Where can your fans meet you?
At Starbucks? Kidding. The usual places: website, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Amazon author page. I’m also going to the Romantic Times convention in Dallas this year and I’ll be participating in a “meet and greet” for historical romance authors and fans on Sunday, the 17th. Hope to see some fans there!

 What would you like readers to know about you?

I’m a contributor to the book blog Get Lost in a Story, and I feature new finds in historical romance. My “Best of the West” series of interviews features authors who write American historical romance. Over the past four years, I’ve discovered some great new (or new to me) books and authors. I’d love for readers to come by and check us out. You might find your next good read!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


There are many dangerous happenings surrounding the Katy Railroad expansion out West.  People are being reported missing in Parsons, Kansas and some believe that the railroad is to blame.

Henry Stevens is a very determined man.  The railroad executive has a job to take care of, and he will do almost anything to get that job done, even if he must resort to less than legal means to achieve its end. The handsome man is taken for a loop when the railroad sends Major Robert Forbes with his attractive daughter Lucy in tow from the East, to assess the goings on with the Katy Railroad.

Lucy Forbes has a preconceived notion that Henry Stevens is somewhat villainous and usually her instincts are spot on, but Henry is a complete contradiction and she doesn't know how to handle it. The strong and sophisticated Henry one minute can be clear, cool and concise, and then next he can be getting dirty with the average man, helping out when needed. Considering Lucy was sure that he father would have no difficulty in discovering wrong-doing by Henry, she is now confused. She is also a bit undone about the sparks that fly between them both.
Weary of her life back East, Lucy is determined to have an adventure, but sometimes adventure leads to danger, and Miss Forbes has a knack for finding it. When her father heads out of town to smooth over some railroad business, not only does this danger seek Lucy and Henry out, but passion does as well. Will Henry be able to put Lucy’s misgivings about him to rest? Will he be able to solve the problems that have wreaked havoc on the railroad? You will just have to pick up A Dangerous Passion by E.E. Burke to find out.

This is the first book I have read by E.E. Burke and I was so impressed with A Dangerous Passion that I am currently ensnared by her previous titles and eagerly wait for anything this very talented author writes. Westward expansion of the railroad was as fascinating as it was perilous. Those brave men and women who followed the expansion had hard lives. A Dangerous Passion gives us a peek inside. Henry Stevens is dark, brooding and resolute. Once he meets Miss Forbes, he realizes that there is much more than work. Lucy has had an unconventional upbringing with a permissive father, who perhaps just could never say no to his intelligent and adventurous daughter, but she indeed meets her match in the form of Henry Stevens. Trust is a word that both need to come to terms with during the journey in A Dangerous Passion by E.E. Burke. This well written tale draws the reader in and doesn’t let go. 


Tuesday, February 10, 2015

GUEST REVIEW: Forever in My Heart (Tangled Hearts, #2) by Maria K. Alexander

Super-hot alpha male…check. Nosy Italian family…check. Beautiful love story…check. Forever in my heart by
 Maria K Alexander has it all!

 When Jamie DiSilva returns home from the military he finds a family in shambles and a community that wants nothing to do with him. Looking to get his construction company off the ground he and his friend Tristan have been visiting local business hoping to jobs but with the DiSilva name it seems that all doors are closed. He decides to approach Vicky DeFrancesco his old girlfriend. When he enters Decadent DeLites he sees Vicky again for the first time in 10 years and realizes that she is still the one. But getting her to go out with him is proving to be the hardest mission of his life. 

Vicky DeFrancesco, the baby of the family has finally struck out on her own to pursue her dream of owning a bakery in her hometown of Philadelphia. Business is picking up at Decadent DeLites and she is looking to update the bakery as it used to be her families pizzeria. Not sure how she can afford the renovations, help comes in the unwelcome form of Jamie DiSilva. Not only is he her former flame he is a member of the family that nearly destroyed hers. Vicky realizes that she is still attracted to Jamie but how can she be with a DiSilva? Some things happen that requires Vicky to have Jamie’s protection for a few weeks…can she fight the attraction that burns brighter now that they are adults when all she wants to do is run the other way.

I truly enjoyed this story. Vicky and Jamie are two wonderful characters that tugged at my heart. In order for them to get together (and have a relationship) they have to maneuver through many different obstacles in both their personal and professional life. Jamie is willing to give them a chance but Vicky proves to be a little more reluctant. But through some twists and turns Jamie and Vicky do get their HEA!

My favorite line of the story – “All work and no play makes Vicky a grumpy and sexually frustrated woman”

I hope to read more of this author’s in the future. There are many other characters in the book that I hope will have their own story soon!


Friday, February 6, 2015


Created by: Michele Bardsley
Series: Pearson Security, Book One
Publication Date: February 3, 2015
Genre: Paranormal Romance

After Gretchen Myers rescues her murdered stepsister's baby, she's nearly killed in a not-so-accidental car crash. When she wakes up in a Las Vegas hospital, she's alone ... until Rafe Pearson shows up. Not only does he have the baby, but he also manages to rescue her from yet another attempt on her life.

Rafe is approximately the size of a linebacker with the looks of a GQ model. Yet, Gretchen has never seen a man so lonely. And he's never met a woman so stubborn. But while she and the baby are in danger, there's no way the former cop will let them out of his sight.

As a bear shifter who lives in a cabin deep in the woods of Mount Charleston, he has the perfect place to protect his new charges. Then the persistent hunters track down their vulnerable prey, and Rafe discovers too late that these killers are inhuman...

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Michele Bardsley writes howling good paranormal romances. When she's not writing, Michele consumes chocolate, crochet hats, watches "Supernatural," reads on her Kindle, and spend times with her awesome hubby and their fur babies. 

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Thursday, February 5, 2015

GUEST REVIEW: Embrace the Wind (The Blood Rose #7) by Caris Roane

Olivia Hart is a half-human and half-shifter, wolf. Growing up in a small New England town where she can sprout fur, doesn't earn her many friends. After her parent dies, she moves to The Nine Realms, specifically to Swaincott Realm controlled by Master Vampyr Zane, a truly alpha male. She watches Zane come and go from the bar across the street and ends up "ghosting" him. Olivia feels a need to protect Zane. After an Invictus attack, Zane is captured. Olivia can cloak herself and become invisible. She rescues Zane. They both realize that there is an attraction, but neither wants a relationship. Zane lost his wife and swore never to get involved again. Olivia's wolf is attracted to Zane and he is attracted her furry side.

 While Master Vampyrs have a group they feed from, they are in a perpetual state of starvation unless they meet their "one", their Blood Rose. After Zane bites Olivia, he realizes that she is his blood rose. Olivia offers to help Zane fight the Invictus and Margetta the head Wraith. She has many special gifts, one of them being a zephyr wolf, she finds this out after she meets the leader of the Pack , Luther, her cousin. a zephyr wolf can use quick, bounding movements to create wind to confuse the enemy. Using this power, she helps all of the creatures of the Realm to overcome Margetta and the Invictus of the Realm. Olivia has a secret she must share with Zane before they can begin their relationship. Apparently Zane's wife did not die but was an artist living in Maine. She had faked her death to get away from Zane. They go to visit her so Zane can ask for forgiveness and his wife also has a secret too. Seems that when she left, she was pregnant and Zane now had a daughter.

This is the seventh book in The Blood rose series. I have to say, this was one of my favorites. A Master Vampyr who has tats and rides motorcycles and is a bad ass. Fantastic. A heroine who uses her gifts to protect him while helping to fight and defend the Realm. Excellent. I really enjoyed how Olivia came into her own, found love, family and Pack while taking down the evil residing in the Realm. I highly recommend this book especially if you are looking for an alpha vampyr and strong female heroine. I give this book five moons.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

REVIEW: Temptation Has Green Eyes (The Emperors of London #2) by Lynne Connolly

Maximilian, the Marquess of Devereaux has done well in rebuilding the fortune that his father spent restoring the family's county estate. His partner in business, Russell has yet another lucrative deal for Max and it includes marriage to his daughter Sophia. After some apprehension, Max decides to take on Miss Sophia Russell, believing the benefits will outweigh the ball and chain of a wife.

When Sophia discovers her father's dealings with the marquess, she immediately refuses citing she would choose her own husband, if she ever wanted one. This unusual miss is unconventionally intelligent and independent and she will prove difficult if Max thinks he is getting a biddable wife. After stomping her feet in denial, Sophia's father has her finally agreeing to the match, even if it is a begrudging compliance. 

Max and Sophia enter into their union, both knowing it a marriage of convenience, but the obvious passion that stirs between the two their cool cordiality simmers into something more. When outsiders begin to cause trouble with Sophia, she and Max either have to trust each other unequivocally or lose the fragile relationship they have begun to build. 

Temptation Has Green Eyes by Lynne Connolly is a sweeping tale of longing. Sophia and Max have entered into a marriage that neither expected  and neither know how to begin taking up the mantle properly. Max and Sophia's road to love and trust is a bumpy one with both making unfortunate mistakes along the way, but the result is a quite lovely Happily Ever After. Sophia, while intelligent, is naive and young and at times, Max has little patience for her. Max is a force to be reckoned with, he is set in his ways and difficult to bend to his new beauty of a wife. Lynn Connolly's Temptation Has Green Eyes is a well written and engrossing story by a wonderful author who has so much to offer. I look forward to more in the Emperors of London series.


Tuesday, February 3, 2015


We first meet Jolene Crawford Crenshaw in Holly Bush's debut Crawford Family book, Train Station Bride. Jolene was the utterly mean sister to heroine Julia. How does an author take a character who was so disliked and turn her into a heroine? Well, Holly Bush knows the secret, and she does so in the second epic tale of the Crawford Family, Contract to Wed. 

It's now Boston, 1891, and socialite Jolene Crawford Crenshaw has become a widow. She has already suffered loss that has made her bitter, but to be insulted further by her deceased husband's will, Jolene must make a choice, stay in Boston and be ridiculed by her malicious mother and by society, or to start over elsewhere. 

 Wealthy Texas Rancher, Maximilian Shelby has been a widower for sometime, his beloved wife died, leaving him with a small daughter to raise and now that the spitfire, Madeline is almost thirteen, Max needs someone to take his daughter into hand and also assist him in his political aspirations to become Senator. When his sister, Eugenia, who lives in Boston, tells him about the misfortunes that have befallen the widowed Jolene, he marries her by proxy after agreeing to a long list of demands that the irksome Jolene has sent him. 

When Jolene arrives in her new town and meets her new husband for the first time, she is pleasantly surprised Max is so amiable and handsome. She is not happy, however, to find that the daughter, who she believed was of a marriageable age, to be only twelve. Jolene has no intention of being a mother again, not after suffering the terrible loss that holds heavily on her heart. 

Max sees the beautiful and sophisticated, Jolene and immediately feels a twinge of attraction to her. Even after his pledge to never love again after his Melissa passed away, Max can't help but see the possibilities of growing his relationship with Jolene. But Jolene tries desperately to hold Max to a distance. She is after all, a product of the cold and demeaning Boston upbringing in the Crawford household. Nary a word of praise passed from her mother's lips in the time she spent with her parents. Then she went to her first husband's home, discovering a betrayal that forever changed the way she felt about him. Even with his death, the joke was on her when he leaves the bulk of his millions to her sister, Julia's child, cementing the betrayal once suffered. 

Now, Jolene finally has a chance to start anew, but because of her past, she can't take at face value what is right in front of her. She constantly looks for reasons to dwell on the sorrow and the loss, instead of grasping the good. Max, the ever patient husband, knows Jolene has suffered greatly, although he doesn't know all her secrets, he is willing to put his past behind him and solidify his new family. Will these star-crossed lovers find their way? Read Contract to Wed, by Holly Bush to find out. 

Well I guess you all can gather from my review, I simply love this book. I can honestly admit that I have never been let down by one word that Holly Bush has ever written. Ms. Bush's writing is solid and fraught with emotion. Taking a much hated character and turning the tides on her is an undertaking that Holly Bush has done with success. Max and the menagerie of colorful characters in his Hacienda, makes Contract to Wed a story not to be missed. 

Monday, February 2, 2015

REVIEW, BLOG TOUR AND GIVEAWAY: Rough Rider (Hot Cowboy Nights #2) by Victoria Vane ~DIRK KNOWLTON ON TOUR~

This second book in the Hot Cowboy Nights series by Victoria Vane takes a different direction with Dirk, the hero, than the first book in the series,Slow Hand. In order for the reader to get a feel for Dirk's true personality, Victoria Vane takes us back to when Dirk Knowlton was a carefree bull rider enjoying his life. When a pretty little cowgirl named Janice Combes  had her eye on bull rider, Dirk  Knowlton for what seemed like forever.

Pretty twenty one year old, Janice has a lot on her plate with running her father's company, Combes Bucking Bulls. Even though she has has a crush on Dirk since high school, she knows that his preference leans towards beauties like his girlfriend, Rachel Carson who is a rodeo beauty queen.  After a bad fall that leaves Dirk with a few aches and pains and a complaining Rachel making demands that Dirk isn't prepared to succumb to he walks away, Dirk goes in search of Janice in hopes of some normalcy if not intimacy. Janice cannot believe that Dirk actually sought her out, and she is willing to do whatever it takes to even have one night of passion with the cowboy who sets her heart aflutter, even if it goes no further than that. 

Standing on the sidelines, just waiting to swoop in and take over is Dirk's cowboy buddy, Grady, who puts the seed of doubt in Janice's head every chance he can get so he can be her savior when things go South with Dirk. After some misunderstandings between Dirk and Janice, he disappears into the sunset leaving Grady to pick up the pieces of Janice's emotions.

Fast forward ten years. Janice is now Grady's widow and she struggles to raise her son Cody. After a disappointing life with Grady, Janice is left without means to live on her own, so she returns to her hometown to live with her mother and work a job she really doesn't like.  

Dirk Knowlton has become a very different man after returning from the war in the Middle East where he was in the military and lost his leg during fire. The happy go lucky Dirk has turned into a loner and a cynic who cares for nothing but the ranch he lives on and the breed of cattle he is trying to raise. When Janice comes knocking on his door he realizes that the feelings he had for her never went away, but he feels he has nothing to offer her being a broken man.

When Dirk offers Janice a job as a ranch hand, things begin to steam up with their proximity to one another. Janice and Dirk yearn for what once was, and what could possibly be, but both need to take a deep look into themselves before they can move on. So much has happened in the ten years they were apart and coming to terms with that takes a bit of getting used to. Once Dirk and Janice open up to each other with the truths of their pasts, loving each other seems to come naturally, but one truth might shake both Dirk and Janice in the form of a little boy named Cody. 

Rough Rider by Victoria Vane will make your run the gamut of emotions throughout the story. I loved so much how the author went back in time and gave us the so very needed personality traits and goings on surrounding the relationships between the characters. I felt like I knew them as friends and it made me more invested in the outcome. Reading the struggles that both Dirk and Janice went through made me love them so much more. Rough Rider is a well written and intriguing story that places Victoria Vane on my go to list when it comes to authors. I cannot wait for her next book in the Hot Cowboy Nights series, I could use another sleepless night! Well done! 


In Victoria Vane’s second Hot Cowboy Nights book, ROUGH RIDER, readers’ hearts may in fact soften to the rough and bitter Dirk Knowlton they met in Hot Cowboy Nights #1, Slow Hand.

A big thanks to Book Obsessed Chicks for sharing an excerpt with their readers so y’all can get to know a little bit more about the rough and tough hero of ROUGH RIDER. Be sure to enter the Rafflecopter for a chance to win one of three copies of Slow Hand by Victoria Vane!



Another grunt followed and Dirk disappeared, leaving Wade staring down at his boots and shaking his head. After a time he exhaled an exasperated breath.
“Is it always like that with you two?” Nikki asked. They were so different from one another, he and Dirk—like oil and water—and seemed to mix about as well.
“Yeah. Pretty much. A real lovable type, my big brother.”
“What’s the story anyway, Wade? Why are you and he at each other’s throats?”
He gave a crooked grin. “Noticed that, did you?”
“Yeah. Kinda hard not to.”
“Yeah. I s’pose it’s a combination of things. Dirk’s problem is mostly disillusionment. He isn’t the man he was before he joined the Marines, either physically or emotionally.”
“But you said his disability has hardly slowed him down much.”
“That’s true when it comes to the ranch, but how many one-legged rodeo cowboys have you seen?”
She had no answer to that.
Wade continued, “Dirk’s still struggling to adjust to life in general—and not making it easy on any of us. Deep down he knows things can’t go on like they used to in the old days, partly because he can’t go on like he did before. The ranch isn’t the same either but he’s not ready to accept that and let it go.”
“And your father? What does he say?”
“He’s torn, of course. He knows how it is, but he and Mama so desperately want the old Dirk back, and the old life, that they keep hanging on, too. In the meantime, I keep dumping money into the place.”
“I can understand why. So what will you do now?”
He gave her a grim look. “Whatever has to be done. I hate to see the place go but I’m a pragmatist. I’m not going to hold onto a losing operation out of misplaced pride. We had an offer on the table. It was a decent offer. We may not get another one. I’ll try to reason with my brother, but if it comes down to it, I may have to beat some sense into him.”
“You’re joking, right?”
He shrugged. “Let’s just say all the options are on the table.”
“Really? Then what happens if he kicks your ass?”
“Wouldn’t be the first time.” Wade rubbed the bridge of his nose.
Nikki was incredulous. “Your brother broke your nose?
“And a few ribs, but he had two good legs then. I figure we’re more evenly matched now.”

Rough Rider
By Victoria Vane
Sourcebooks Casablanca
Contemporary Western Romance
February 3, 2015
ISBN: 9781492601159

Two wary hearts …
Janice Combes has two loves, bucking bulls and Dirk Knowlton. But Dirk only has eyes for a dazzling rodeo queen. How can Janice ever compete while mired ankle-deep in manure? Exchanging playful banter with Dirk is all Janice can expect—until the stormy night he knocks on her door dripping wet and needing a place to crash.

Different Dreams…
Dirk Knowlton is living the cowboy dream. Life should be good—roping, branding, backing broncs, riding bulls, but there's a void he can't seem to fill. After getting hung up by a bull, he wonders if this is really the life he wants. Restless and rebellious, he bolts…but there’s a certain cowgirl he can’t forget.

When a battle-scarred Dirk returns to his Montana ranch he's determined to hang on at any cost. Janice has come back home to lick her own wounds. When old dreams turn to dust, can two wary hearts take another chance on love?

Buy ROUGH RIDER by Victoria Vane here: Amazon | Apple | B&N | BAM | !ndigo | IndieBound | Kobo

Praise for Slow Hand by Victoria Vane:
“A “red-hot cowboy tale...their sexual chemistry crackles. Well-paced, scorching scenes and witty banter move the story along while setting the stage for Wade’s war-hero brother to find his own true love in the next installment.” – Publishers Weekly
“SLOW HAND by Victoria Vane is delightful, funny, page turning steamy sexy… I'm beginning to think Victoria could write a phone book and make it sexy.” – Unwrapping Romance

Victoria Vane is a multiple award-winning romance novelist and history junkie whose collective works of fiction range from wildly comedic romps to emotionally compelling erotic romance. Victoria also writes historical fiction as Emery Lee and is the founder of Goodreads Romantic Historical Fiction Lovers and the Romantic Historical Lovers book review blog.

Connect with Victoria Vane: Website | Facebook | @AuthorVictoriaV | Pinterest | Goodreads

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