Wednesday, November 30, 2016

#BlogTour: The Darkest Torment with #giveaway and review @TLCBookTours

The Darkest Torment (Lords of the Underworld, Book 12)

by Gena Showalter
Paranormal romance
Paperback/eBook: 576 pages
Publisher: HQN Books (June 1, 2016)

New York Times bestselling author Gena Showalter returns with her most explosive Lords of the Underworld tale to date, about a fierce warrior on the brink of sanity who will stop at nothing to claim the exquisite human with the power to soothe the beast inside him…

Driven to his death by the demon of Distrust, Baden spent centuries in purgatory. Now he’s back, but at what cost? Bound to the king of the underworld, an even darker force, he’s unable to withstand the touch of another…and he’s quickly devolving into a heartless assassin with an uncontrollable temper. Things only get worse when a mission goes awry and he finds himself saddled with a bride—just not his own.

Famed dog trainer Katarina Joelle is forced to marry a monster to protect her loved ones. When she’s taken hostage by the ruthless, beautiful Baden immediately after the ceremony, she’s plunged into a war between two evils—with a protector more dangerous than the monsters he hunts. They are meant to be enemies, but neither can resist the passion burning between them…and all too soon the biggest threat is to her heart.

But as Baden slips deeper into the abyss, she’ll have to teach him to love…or lose him forever.

“Gena Showalter is a romantic genius.” -San Francisco Book Review

“Showalter writes fun, sexy characters you fall in love with!” -Lori Foster, New York Times bestselling author

“The Showalter name on a book means guaranteed entertainment.” -RT Book Reviews
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Purchase 

About the author
Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of over fifty books, including the acclaimed Lords of the Underworld and Angels of the Dark series, and the White Rabbit Chronicles. She writes sizzling paranormal romance, heartwarming contemporary romance, and unputdownable young adult novels, and lives in Oklahoma City with her family and menagerie of dogs. Visit her at GenaShowalter.com.

Connect with Gena

Website | Facebook | Twitter


The Darkest Torment is the twelth book in the Lords of the Underworld and centers on Baden and Katarina. I will not attempt to give a synopsis of the history, story, and conflicts in this book. There's too much and fans will already be knowledgeable with the facts pertaining to the individual lords and their backstories. Baden is a conflicted, long suffering badass. His demon isn't part of him anymore, but it does make its presence known by offering tempting words promising dark things to Baden. It is up to the man to fight it off. 

I have read a handful of books in this ongoing series and each one can be read as a standalone. Usually. Showalter usually gives us brooding males and strong women, all are interesting, their storylines intrigue, plots are complex and easy to follow, and each definitely sizzles and entertains. Consistently.

As an occasional reader of this series I liked this book but I did have problems with it too. That is why I used words like 'usually' and 'consistently' above. For such a dense book I felt some aspects seemed redundant and others not explained enough. I didn't get a true sense of Baden's character. I also did not think there was chemistry between the leads. Katarina could be annoying and as a human bullied Baden. Her attitude became a bit much at times. Baden was downright depressing. The plots and conflicts at times seemed long-winded and drawn-out. I tried to really care for these characters but ultimately did not. 

Perhaps my problems stemmed from not reading the entire series in their proper order. I have read other Showalter books--shorter, faster paced, exciting, romantic tales I have enjoyed--but I feel I have to give up on this particular series. Reading is all about the experience and this time around it was simply an okay read for me.

Rating: 3
Cover comment: For such a brooding immortal, this cover model looks too content with his pose to pass as Baden. Cool tats and wristlets though.
Book source: Upon my request, Harlequin sent me an ARC so I could read the book and write a review for this tour.


Wednesday, November 30th: Reading Reality
Wednesday, November 30th: Reader Girls

Friday, December 2nd: Urban Girl Reader
Friday, December 2nd: Drey’s Library – excerpt

Monday, December 5th: Read Love Blog

Tuesday, December 6th: Books a la Mode 

Wednesday, December 7th: From the TBR Pile
Wednesday, December 7th: Harlie’s Books

Friday, December 9th: Books that Hook

Monday, December 12th: Lampshade Reader 
Monday, December 12th: Books Without Any Picture

Wednesday, December 14th: Mom in Love with Fiction

Friday, December 16th: The Romance Dish 
Friday, December 16th: A Night’s Dream of Books

Monday, December 19th: Stuck in Books

Wednesday, December 21st: Snowdrop Dreams of Books 

Friday, December 23rd: Stranded in Chaos

Monday, December 26th: 100 Pages a Day 

Wednesday, December 28th: Written Love Reviews

Wednesday, December 28th: Lovely Reads

Giveaway

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

#BookBlitz: No Secrets by @nonaraines with excerpt and #giveaway #NALit #romance @XpressoTours


No Secrets
N. Raines
Publication date: November 29th 2016
Genres: New Adult, Romance
She wants him… 
Alyxandra Franklin crushed on Cris Garcia the first time they met. He wasn’t like the guys in her crowd, the boys in grown-up bodies. No, Cris was a man. A man who’d stand up for his girl, hold her close and keep her love safe. In spite of her feelings, Alyx never made a move on him. How could she? He belonged to her best friend, Gabi. And now it’s too late. 
He hates her…
Cris figures if he never sees Alyx Franklin again, it’ll be too soon. She’s nothing but a spoiled stupid rich girl, too busy partying to care about anyone but herself. She’s the reason Gabi, the girl he loved, lost her life.
But he’s wrong. Gabi had secrets. When those secrets blow up his life, Cris is willing to go to any lengths to unravel the lies. Even if that means befriending Alyx—and sleeping with her—to learn the truth.

Only 99¢ until December 3rd!
Would you like to read Book 1 in Nona’s serial romance Not the Hot Chick for *FREE*?
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EXCERPT:
Brandon nuzzled her ear. “It’s just you and me, baby.”
She pushed him away as she tried to think. Oh, God. If only she hadn’t had all those drinks. Her muzzy state made her clumsy and off-kilter. She meant no, but Brandon wasn’t taking no for an answer. Though she’d slapped away his hand, he kept pushing.
He tickled up her side as she tried to squirm away. “Bet I can change your mind…”
God, she was ticklish there. She couldn’t help laughing, even though she was pissed he wouldn’t take her seriously. “Don’t…no, stop it. I mean it, Brandon. Stop…”
A deep voice cut through her weak giggles and Brandon’s whispered teasing. “You got a problem with your hearing? She said stop.”
They both froze. Alyx couldn’t make out the man’s face in the darkness, but she knew the voice.
Cris.
When he stepped into the light, Alyx stiffened even as her chest flooded with relief. Grateful as she was that someone had intervened, why did he have to be that someone?
He gazed at them stony-faced. His eyes zeroed in on Brandon’s hand on her waist. She felt Brandon’s hand tighten, then drop away as he glared back at Cris. “What do you want?”
“I want you to leave her alone.” He nodded at Alyx.
“Why don’t you just mind your own business?”
Cris ignored him, focusing on Alyx. “Do you want this assclown touching you?”
“Hey!” Clenching his fists, Brandon took a step toward Cris.
Alyx spoke quickly. “I just want to go home.” Though pissed off at Brandon, she didn’t want to see him and Cris get into it.
The air quivered with nervous energy as the two guys eyed each other. Brandon’s jaw was set as though he wanted to lay into Cris, and Cris looked as though he’d like nothing better than to bust Brandon in his preppy, pretty-boy face.
Another voice broke the tension. “Everything cool over here?”
A man stepped out of the darkness and stood beside Cris. Alyx recognized him from inside the bar, the guy who’d been sitting with Cris. Tall and broad shouldered, he was the kind of guy you’d want watching your back when trouble came calling.
“Yeah.” Cris’s even tone belied the tenseness in his body. “It’s all good, man.” He glanced at Alyx. “Where’s your car? I’ll drive you home. You’re in no shape to get behind the wheel.” Then he turned to the big guy, his friend. “Rick, can you follow us so I can get a lift back here to my ride?”
She tottered on her three-inch heels while Brandon sneered. “Well, I uh…my car’s not here. I mean, I came with a friend…but she left without me.” God, did she sound pathetic or what?
Brandon’s nasty laughter rang out behind them as his climbed into his car. “Good luck getting home, Alyx.” He gave the door a slam, then peeled out of the lot, gunning the motor as a farewell fuck-you.
Total silence reverberated before Cris spoke again. “You got some real nice friends.”
He didn’t even try to hide his contempt, obviously convinced she was stupid and irresponsible. Maybe he was right.
“Well, um, I could call a cab.” She unsnapped her tiny purse and wanted to cry when all she found was a compact, a tube of lipstick, and a couple of crumpled dollar bills.
Oh, crap. Not even enough to take the bus, if buses ran this late. What to do? Her brain scrabbled frantically to come up with an answer. “I could call my sister to come get me.” Right, ask her for a favor after you ditched her party. But no matter how pissed Morgan might be, she wouldn’t leave Alyx stranded. Nor would she tattle to their parents.
She felt both men’s gazes on her, the big guy’s soft with sympathy, Cris’s hard and judgmental. She felt every bit the spoiled little airhead they imagined her to be.
The big dude spoke up. “Well, I could—”
“No,” Cris said. “I got this, Rick. Come on, Alyx. I’ll take you home.”

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Author Bio:
N. Raines (who also writes as Nona Raines) is a former librarian who lives in upstate New York with her many pets. She’s currently working on her next novel between walking the dog and shooing the cats off the laptop. Her erotic romances are published with The Wild Rose Press and Loose Id. Her transgender romance His Kind of Woman was nominated for the 2014 DABWAHA sponsored by the Dear Author and Smart Bitches, Trashy Books review blogs. Her most recent work is the romance novella Write to Me and the transgender romance Her Kind of Man.

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#BookBlitz: The Fighter and the Baroness by @SunnivaD with excerpt and #giveaway #romance @XpressoTours


The Fighter and the Baroness
Sunniva Dee
Publication date: November 29th 2016
Genres: New Adult, Romance
Victor Arquette knows the meaning of sacrifice. Destined to legendary status in mixed martial arts, his life is founded on it. Dedication equals sacrifice, and sacrifice means around-the-clock training, no partying, no junk food, no alcohol—and no women.
Helena von Isenlohe is the heiress to Kyria Castle. Due to her father’s lack of financial prowess, the restoration of the ancient German estate rests on Helena’s shoulders. A failed attempt leaves a wealthy man alone at the altar—and the fleeing bride on a plane to the United States.
A chance meeting, and Victor and Helena’s chemistry is undeniable. Except, her presence clutters his focus. Victor shouldn’t crave their nights, shouldn’t be concerned where she is or with whom. And meanwhile in Germany, Kyria Castle deteriorates at a suspicious speed, indebting Helena further to the man she left behind.
Victor and Helena believe in duty. They embrace sacrifice. But when love strikes, it strikes hard, and sometimes you have to choose where your heart is truly at home.
EXCERPT:
HELENA
My cheeks warm with embarrassment at the people waiting behind me. A female employee helps me unclasp the diamond bracelet and matching necklace. The crown though is impossible to get out of my princess ’do.
“Can I wear it through the security portal?” I ask, broken shoes in one hand.
“No, I’m sorry. It will buzz,” the security person explains. “The portal is created to alert us to most metals besides gold and silver.”
I can’t tell him I wear gold. Real, irreplaceable, century-old heirlooms. He wouldn’t believe me anyway. “If it’s okay with you, I’d like to try.”
He lifts his arms in subtle agreement, a have-it-your-way, and I enter the booth, walk out without incident. Employees from two checkpoints stare at me while I pick my stuff off the band. I shake my head, slowly at first, but then I have nothing to say, no witty comeback, and my flight instinct kicks in. I get up on my toes so I don’t stumble in the too-long skirt and stride as slowly as I can into the transit hall.
I need to not stress the hell out. Just, I wish someone was with me to talk me down. I could call Elfriede. I don’t have my phone. I need a new phone. God, how pathetic am I?
Once I’m sure security isn’t following, I haul butt down the corridor. Tiles are cold under bare feet, it turns out. I’d step into my shoes again, but one of them is broken. Would people stare less if I limped and my heels creak-clacked against the floor?
A high-end fashion store beams in the distance. “We’ll help you blend in. Hurry, hurry,” it calls. I run. Benches are in the way. I’m getting clumsy. I’m panicking. Suddenly, a potted palm tree appears out of nowhere, half-blocking my view of the Promised Land, and my torso doubles around it as I slam to the ground.
I let out an ungraceful oomph. And realize I’m not on the ground after all. No, there’s an arm around me, and miraculously I’m on my feet, wobbly but sort of erect.
“You all right?” an American accent asks.
“I was going to Cloe’s over there,” I explain in German, pointing feebly and not feeling as regal as I’ve been taught. Dark eyebrows contract from within a tanned face above me.
“Sorry?” His arm is still strong around me, really freaking strong, and somehow I’ve got a death grip around it while trying to pry him off.
I translate the same stupid sentence to English. “I was going to Cloe’s. It’s over there.”
His brows are perfectly thick or thin and their arcs are so perfectly perfect they look like they’ve been combed, but then the furrow between them smoothens and I discover his eyes.
Oh.


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Author Bio:
Between studies, teaching, and advising, Sunniva has spent her entire adult life in a college environment. Most of her novels are new adult romance geared toward smart, passionate readers with a love for eclectic language and engaging their brain as well as their heart while reading.
Born in the Land of the Midnight Sun, the author spent her early twenties making the world her playground. Southern Europe: Spain, Italy, Greece--Argentina: Buenos Aires, in particular. The United States finally kept her interest, and after half a decade in Los Angeles, she now lounges in the beautiful city of Savannah.
Sometimes, Sunniva writes with a paranormal twist (Shattering Halos, Stargazer, and Cat Love). At other times, it's contemporary (Pandora Wild Child, Leon's Way, Adrenaline Crush, Walking Heartbreak, and Dodging Trains, coming in late March 2016).
This author is the happiest when her characters let their emotions run off with them, shaping her stories in ways she never foresaw. She loves bad-boys and good-boys run amok, and like in real life, her goal is to keep the reader on her toes until the end of each story.

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