Cover Reveal for When I’m With You by Harper Sloan


Coming soon from New York Times Bestselling Author Harper Sloan is the third book in the Hope Town Series




It’s nearly impossible to be surrounded by love but not understand it. My parents, my sister, and just about everyone around us has no trouble accepting that love. To give your trust to someone else and believe they would die before hurting you. I’ve witnessed it—I’ve seen the power of it—but I’ve also seen the pain. Because for me, I’ve only loved someone I could never have, and my biggest fear is that by giving her my love, all I would do is ruin her. I should have tried harder, but I’m not sure I can because I only feel complete when I’m with her.


The only time I feel like I belong is when he’s near. His infectious smile warms me straight to my bones. Any insecurities I have vanish with just a wink from him. A sliver of his attention makes me feel invincible. But all it took was one drunken night of truths for me to lose everything I had begun to crave. Now, I’m not sure how to move on because I only feel complete when I’m with him.


He said I was too young. I said he was perfect. He said our families wouldn’t understand. I said we could weather any storm. He said he would ruin me. And he was right.



About the Author
harperphoto-300x272Harper is a NEW YORK TIMES, WALL STREET JOURNAL and USA TODAY bestselling author residing in Georgia with her husband and three daughters. She has a borderline unhealthy obsession with books, hibachi, tattoos and Game of Thrones. When she isn’t writing you can almost always find her with a book in hand.

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Release Day Launch for Dance of Desire by Christopher Rice



We are thrilled to bring you the Release Day Launch for DANCE OF DESIRE by Christopher Rice! DANCE OF DESIRE is a novella brought to you by 1001 Dark Nights. DANCE OF DESIRE is the first contemporary romance told with the author’s trademark humor and heart. It also introduces readers to a quirky and beautiful town in the Texas Hill Country called Chapel Springs. Grab your copy of this sexy novella today!



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When Amber Watson walks in on her husband in the throes of extramarital passion with one of his employees, her comfortable, passion-free life is shattered in an instant. Worse, the fate of the successful country music bar that bears her family’s name suddenly hangs in the balance. Her soon to be ex-husband is one of the bar’s official owners; his mistress, one of its employees. Will her divorce destroy her late father’s legacy?

Not if Amber’s adopted brother Caleb has anything to do with it. The wandering cowboy has picked the perfect time for a homecoming. Better yet, he’s determined to use his brains and his fists to put Amber’s ex in his place and keep the family business intact. But Caleb’s long absence has done nothing to dim the forbidden desire between him and the woman the State of Texas considers to be his sister.

Years ago, when they were just teenagers, Caleb and Amber shared a passionate first kiss beside a moonlit lake. But that same night, tragedy claimed the life of Caleb’s parents and the handsome young man went from being a family friend to Amber’s adopted brother. Has enough time passed for the two of them to throw off the roles Amber’s father picked for them all those years ago? Will their desire for each other save the family business or put it in greater danger?

DANCE OF DESIRE is the first contemporary romance from award-winning, New York Times bestselling author Christopher Rice, told with the author’s trademark humor and heart. It also introduces readers to a quirky and beautiful town in the Texas Hill Country called Chapel Springs.

READER ADVISORY. DANCE OF DESIRE contains fantasies of dubious consent, acted on by consenting adults. Readers with sensitivities to those issues should be advised.


“What time was it last night when you saw the moon?”she’d asked him.

“Past midnight.”

“But you only went to bed at eleven.”

“I couldn’t sleep.”

They both knew what thoughts were keeping him awake, thoughts of his father’s drinking and of how crazy his mother was going trying to rein it all in.

“Wake me up next time,” she’d told him. “I’ll keep you company.”

Such simple words, but she’d felt like she was jumping off the edge of a cliff when she’d said them. Instead of answering, Caleb gave her a long look as he fiddled with the leg of his shorts. She’d silently cursed herself, called herself an idiot and worse.

Caleb was just a friend. Honestly, he wasn’t even that, was he? Circumstances had thrown them together, that was all. He was the son of her father’s best friend, so they were basically like distant cousins, only with no shared blood in their veins. Crazy of her to think there might be more there.

If her friends could see her now, they’d probably laugh at her; the same friends who’d swooned that day her father had picked her up from school with Caleb in the passenger seat of his truck, and Caleb, wearing a Stetson that was about a half-size too big for his head, had given them a cocky grin, looked right into her eyes and said, Afternoon, pretty lady. Not afternoon pretty ladies, even though she’d had about four other girls standing on the curb next to her when he’d said it.

Clearly she’d made way too much of that moment. Sometimes afternoon just meant, afternoonand pretty lady was what a guy called you when he was trying to look cool.

Or so she’d thought earlier that day. Before he took her up on her offer and woke her up in the middle of the night so they could look at the moon together.

Which they do.

Because it’s beautiful.

When he lowers his right hand, the same hand with which he was just pointing to the night sky, her breath catches. Every muscle in her body tenses in anticipation.

Where will it land?




About the Author

christopher-rice-author-photo-200x300After publishing four New York Times bestselling thrillers by the age of 30 and being declared one of People Magazine’s Sexiest Men Alive, award-winning writer Christopher Rice became the first author to make his erotic romance debut part of the 1,001 DARK NIGHTS series. THE FLAME: A Desire Exchange Novella kicked off a steamy new series set in New Orleans, featuring magical candles and a sexy new breed of supernatural beings, The Radiants, who are devoted to helping heroes and heroines realize their heart’s desire. THE FLAME earned accolades from some of the biggest names in erotic romance and was quickly followed up by THE SURRENDER GATE: A Desire Exchange Novel, available from Evil Eye Concepts as a Blue Box Special. Aside from authoring eight works of dark suspense, Christopher is also the co-host and executive producer of THE DINNER PARTY SHOW WITH CHRISTOPHER RICE & ERIC SHAW QUINN, all the episodes of which can be downloaded at and from iTunes. Make sure you’re subscribed to The Dinner Party Show’s You Tube channel to receive their newest content in 2016.


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Chapter Reveal for Because of Lucy by Lisa Swallow


Today we are sharing chapter one from BECAUSE OF LUCY by Lisa Swallow. This is a New Adult contemporary romance title that was originally published as a novella in 2013. This is a new edition that has been fully revised and expanded into a full-length novel! Because of Lucy is the first book in the ‘Butterfly Days’ series, and it will be released in just one week – next Tuesday, February 25th.



Because of Lucy (Butterfly Days #1)

Releasing: February 25

Add Because of Lucy to Goodreads

Book Blurb:

“In life, there are some people you have to lose in order to find yourself.”

Ness’s parents have planned her life but Ness is determined to control her own future. She leaves home and moves to Leeds with childhood friend, Abby, and shocks her parents by turning down a place at medical school to take a job in a call-centre.

Ness meets Evan, a student friend of Abby’s, and isn’t impressed. He’s drunk, arrogant and rarely spends the night without a girl in his bed. But unlike most guys she meets Evan quotes poetry and can hold a conversation, forcing Ness to change her opinion.

Evan is struggling to escape too and throws himself into the student lifestyle to hide from the past following him. In Ness, Evan finds somebody who shares the need to walk away from what people expect him to be.

But Evan can’t hide from his past forever and when Lucy appears she threatens his new relationship with Ness. Ness is unsure she can deal with the effect Lucy has on Evan, and makes a new decision about her future.

When everything falls apart and their new lives and relationship don’t go as planned, Ness and Evan are both faced with difficult choices. All because of Lucy.



Because of Lucy
Chapter One



There’s a stranger lying in my bed. The streetlight casts an orange glow through the open curtains and across the tell-tale mound, and underneath my brand new and expensive bedding is a snoring figure. A male, judging by the size, and by the decibels. When I left for work this evening, the bed was definitely vacant.
I drop my bag on my carpeted bedroom floor and swear loudly. He doesn’t hear. I’m not surprised; the noise of voices and music downstairs would drown out the sound of my murderous intent towards this moron. I’m exhausted after an eight-hour shift and this is not what I need.
Slamming the door behind me, I head for the stairs. The tatty furniture of the lounge room is covered with people, although littered is the term I’d use. Half a dozen inebriated, scruffy students are draped over the brown sofa or propped against each other on the threadbare carpet. A couple gaze at me absently. My housemate, Abby, squints and pulls herself unsteadily to her feet. She staggers towards me, her drink sloshing from the cup onto the dirty floor.
“Ness!” she cries, trying to hug me. “You’re home!”
I step back. “I’ve been home for half an hour.”
She blinks. “Have you?”
Her long brown hair escaped the straightening tongs this evening and sticks up on one side. Abby’s smeared lipstick and her boyfriend, Matt, nearby indicate why she didn’t notice me coming home.
“Who is in my bed?”
Abby gives me a look; one I’ve learned to identify over the years. She’s beyond any chance of reasonable conversation. “No idea.”
“Abby, I’ve been working all night. I’m knackered. I want to go to bed and there’s one of your guests occupying it.”
Abby giggles.
“Not funny!” I snap. “You can’t do this every night; weekends only for parties. Please.”
We agreed to share a house, her as a student, me working full-time. What a huge mistake.
“It’s not my fault…”
“What? You mean we were invaded? They just let themselves into the house?”
The people in the room are becoming familiar, the same set of friends arranged in their favourite places around the room. Drinking and smoking, discussing politics and listening to Lou Reed. So hip, so retro. So clichéd.
“No, but…” She puts a hand over her mouth, making a noise somewhere between a hiccup and a burp. No, but… she’s the only first year student in the group who lives in her own house. When the pubs and clubs shut, the friends can’t fit everyone into one of their dorm rooms, and I have the pleasure of their company most nights. I want to shout at Abby, tell her how selfish she’s being, but there’s no point. Her goldfish memory is worse when she’s drunk, and she won’t remember a thing I say in the morning.
“So where do I sleep?” As if I’m going to get any sleep in party central anyway.
Again, Abby looks at me blankly.
“For god’s sake, Abby!”
This is pointless. I pick my way through the bohemian bodies on the floor and into the kitchen. Empty bottles and dinner plates vie for a place on the cluttered kitchen counter. There’re two glasses left in the white cupboards and I fill one with water.
Why did I join student Abby in Leeds when I’d rejected a place at the university myself? I’m rubbing my parents’ faces in it while I lower myself into the life of a call centre drone. Pride of the family, Vanessa, was always going to be a doctor, like Daddy. Or she was until I said ‘screw that’. I’m not their precious Vanessa who they can mould into what they decide I should be. I’m Ness, and I’m doing what I want with my life.
As I regard the state of the so-called elite, studying class around me, I’m doubly glad I’m not one of them.
“’Scuse me.”
I sidestep the sink and turn to the voice. A tall guy leans against the doorframe, trying to appear nonchalant, but his slackened stance indicates he’s attempting to keep himself upright. His brown hair is longer at the front and spills into his face; unfocused brown eyes look in my direction. This person is one of the regulars. I don’t pay a lot of attention to Abby’s friends, but he’s a good-looking guy; and however hard I tried not to, I’ve noticed him, but not only because of his looks.
Some nights as I eat a late dinner after work at the table in the corner, I watch the group from my seat with a mixture of despair and amusement, and this guy intrigues me. Girls gravitate to him, and he turns on his smile and soaks up their attention, but something I can’t put my finger on hovers around the confident persona. This guy has his place as the joker who ensures he’s at the centre of the group, but some nights he’s quiet and focuses more on drinking and less on girls. Like tonight.
“Yes?” I snap, not in the mood.
He sweeps a gaze along the length of me, eyes lingering on where my work shirt stretches across my breasts. Unbelievable… I straighten my sleeves and look at him with an eyebrow raised.
“Are you Abby’s housemate?” he asks.
“Who are you?”
“Evan.” He rubs his nose. “You’re not a student.”
“Correct, I am the one not lying in a drunken haze on the floor contemplating my navel.”
Evan takes a step forward, steadying himself on the counter with one hand, as my witty repartee sails over his head. “Why?”
“Why am I not on the floor drunk?”
“Why aren’t you a student?”
“Because I work instead.”
“Hmm.” He grasps onto the sink, searching for a glass. I pass him the spare one. “Did you fail?”
“Fail what?”
Evan fills the glass. “Or are you just not smart enough for uni? What is it you do?” He gulps the water in three mouthfuls then wipes his mouth with his hand.
The arrogant bloody… “That’s right, I’m not smart enough. I’m living with Abby until I can find a nice man to marry then I can have my kids and a house in the suburbs. Because, as I’m not a student, I have no future.”
Evan leans against the sink, his tall frame dominating the small kitchen. “Fair enough.”
Oh my god, he believes me. How drunk is he exactly? “So, you think anyone who doesn’t go to university is inferior to you?”
I’ve seen Abby’s friends looking down their noses at me. To make things worse, the locals band together and hate students, and the students do the same and clash with the locals. I’m neither. I can’t win.
We’re close now and Evan smells of alcohol and pot, with a faint hint of a clean scent lingering on his clothes. His plain blue T-shirt rides up as he leans against the sink; that’s a serious set of abs he has. Okay, I can’t help myself, I check him out. Beneath his fringe, Evan has deep brown eyes. Incoherent eyes. I hate to admit, but something about him is seriously sexy.
Even if he is a dick.
“Well, if you’ll excuse me,” I say.
He sniggers.
“What’s funny?”
“You sound like the Queen.”
Not this again. I get enough crap at work; I moved from Surrey to Yorkshire and suddenly I’m ‘stuck up Home Counties girl’.
I don’t dignify Evan’s comment with an answer, turn away, and walk out of the kitchen.
“Want me to get the guy out of your bed?” Evan calls after me.
I stop and look round. “You know him?”
“I could replace him.”
My mouth drops open at his arrogance. An attempt at a flirtatious smile plays around his lips, but the unfocused eyes kill the effect he’s trying to achieve. He’s serious. Evan has his ready supply of eager girls; I guess it doesn’t matter to them how conceited he is. Some girls go for his type. Not me.
I step towards him. “Evan, I am not one of those drunk girls in there. I have no interest in you getting into my bed. Good night.”
Feeling happy with my retort, I weave back through the lounge in the direction of the stairs. Behind me, Evan impersonates my words with an exaggerated posh accent.
It’s a good thing I’m sober; otherwise, I’d go back and slap him.




The next book in the series, Finding Evan, will be releasing March 29th!


Finding Evan (Butterfly Days #2)

Releasing: March 29th

Add Finding Evan to Goodreads



About the Author


Lisa is an Amazon bestselling author of contemporary and paranormal romance. She is originally from the UK and moved to Australia in 2001. She now lives in Perth, Western Australia with her husband, three children, and Weimaraner, Tilly, who often makes appearances on Lisa’s social media.

Lisa’s first publication was a moving poem about the rain, followed by a suspenseful story about shoes. Following these successes at nine years old there was a long gap in her writing career, until she published her first book in 2013.

In the past, Lisa worked as an English teacher in France, as an advertising copywriter in England, and ran her own business in Australia. Now she spends her days with imaginary rock stars.

She lived in Europe as a child and also travelled when she left university. This has given Lisa stories which would sound far-fetched if she wrote them down, and maybe one day she will. These days, Lisa is happy in her writing cave, under Tilly’s supervision.





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Cover Reveal for Falling In Deeper by Shayla Black

We are excited to share the next cover in the Wicked Lover Series by Shayla Black.

FALLING IN DEEPER will release on July 5th.




A tragic past threatens to destroy a passionate future in this dangerously sexy new novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Wicked for You.

After a violent tragedy nearly destroyed her, Lily Taylor ran away, changed her name, and started over. When her deadly nemesis resurfaces to eliminate his loose end, she turns to the last man she should trust—a stranger with a history of violence and an intoxicating sexuality she can’t refuse…

Though strong-armed into locating Lily to help put away a drug lord, ex-con Stone Sutter isn’t anyone’s snitch. When he finds the terrified beauty, he vows to keep her safe—but he isn’t sure he has the strength to shield her from his own desires.

As an unquenchable fire sparks between them, Lily’s tormentor stalks ever closer, and she must overcome her darkest fear to survive. Can she trust the bond she and Stone have formed as they’re falling in deeper?


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shaylablack-highres-202x300Shayla Black is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than forty novels. For over fifteen years, she’s written contemporary, erotic, paranormal, and historical romances via traditional, independent, foreign, and audio publishers. Her books have sold well over a million copies and been published in a dozen languages.

Raised an only child, Shayla occupied herself with lots of daydreaming, much to the chagrin of her teachers. In college, she found her love for reading and realized that she could have a career publishing the stories spinning in her imagination. Though she graduated with a degree in Marketing/Advertising and embarked on a stint in corporate America to pay the bills, her heart has always been with her characters. She’s thrilled that she’s been living her dream as a full-time author for the past seven years.

Shayla currently lives in North Texas with her wonderfully supportive husband, her teenage daughter, and a very spoiled cat. In her “free” time, she enjoys reality TV, reading, and listening to an eclectic blend of music.


Chapter Reveal for Shuffle by Lisa Swallow


Today we are sharing a chapter from SHUFFLE by Lisa Swallow. This is a contemporary romance title and the second book in the series Ruby Riot! The book will be released January 28th and it is available for pre-order now, exclusively through amazon.



Will Campbell, Ruby Riot bassist, is back at university and failing badly at everything apart from partying.

With Ruby Riot on a break, Will returns to university to finish his degree. He needs major help if he wants to pass his final year and attempts to join a not-very-rock star study group. Will is horrified to discover the person organising the group is Fleur Roberts, the girl he’s secretly crushed on for two years and who recently threatened him with a restraining order.

Fleur’s rock stars are history academics. She has no interest in any variety of pierced, tattooed slacker, especially not the jackass rock star who humiliated her at a party. There’s no way in Hell that Will Campbell is joining her group.

Faced with losing the easiest way to fix his academic problems, Will has the perfect solution: pretend he’s his twin, Nate. Will and Nate have swapped identities before so nothing can go wrong. Surely.

Fleur is successful academically, but her love life is a failure. Following a number of disastrous dates, she finds herself falling in love with a guy who is lying to her. But Will’s deceit isn’t the only thing about to shatter her world. When another man Fleur trusted betrays her, and she attempts to retaliate, Fleur discovers how dangerous he is. And when Will becomes involved, the repercussions threaten both of their futures.

Shuffle is the second standalone book in the Ruby Riot series and can be read separately to the first book.


Pre-Order Exclusive to Amazon

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Purchase the previous book in the series

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Touring with Blue Phoenix fooled us into thinking we’d hit the big time and would never return to our ordinary lives again. Yeah, Ruby Riot dominates our corner of the music scene, we’re bombarded with questions and posts on social media, fan mail, and the whole deal. But, at the end of the day, we’re three guys and a girl in a band.
The band’s progress halted and life rewound when our lead singer, Ruby, danced off into the sunset with the Blue Phoenix guitarist and a baby on the way. Jax lost his shit over Ruby getting knocked up by Jem; but what’s the point in freaking out? She’ll come back; Ruby lives and breathes her music more than any of us. Apart from Jax, who was recently caught in feminine wiles of his own. Tegan, Bryn Hughes sister, kicked his backside into line in a spectacular fashion. I can almost see the thumbprint on his forehead. Things lulled as we finished the album and while Ruby has her baby. Then, we try again.
So, me and Nate rewind several months, back to studying and fulfilling our promise to parents. Mine still think we need a back-up plan for when our little musical venture fails. If they’d bothered to pay attention to our lives over the last few months, Mum and Dad would know this isn’t likely to happen any time soon.
We spent all our money from the tour within weeks. Now the choice is a job, which equals less time and energy to rehearse, or doing what the parents want and dutifully completing our degrees. No big deal, only a year left now.
Okay, big deal because I fucked up last year. I need high marks in all my courses this year or I’m going to fail my degree. An Arts degree. Nobody fails an Arts degree.
Living the rock star dream involved more than the odd weekend gig – rehearsals, obligatory partying, and girls. Hangovers equal missed lectures; but somehow, Nate juggled his student/rock star life as adeptly as his drumsticks. Nate studies the same course as I do, but we choose different class times. As only a handful of people in the world can tell us apart, between us we manage to attend at least one of the classes a week and keep our attendance average.
Nate became slack at note-taking last year, his hungover haze interfering with the ability to open his laptop, but somehow he muddled through and passed. I came a tiny percentage away from failing the majority of courses.
I only have myself to blame.
The worst subject is history. Nate talked me into this as our major, and I agreed, thought it would be easy, but no. Hardly any classes to attend, but so much fucking study. We study English lit too; that’s easier to scrape through by reading notes and creating my own crazy theories. History is bloody complicated.
Two weeks in, and things are off to a bad start.
“Shit!” I throw my paper at Nate, across the table in the cafe.
He looks at the assignment-marking sheet on the front and screws his nose up. “Oh, man. Fifteen percent? Was that for getting your name right?”
“I’m fucked!” I grumble and sit next to him. “What about you?”
“Sixty-three percent.”
“How? How do you do that?”
“I do study!”
“Study more.”
I swear under my breath and pull out my phone. A text from Dee, the chick I hooked up with at the beginning of term; a starry-eyed Fresher who won’t take the hint I’m not interested. Times like this, I need to remind myself who I am. Will Campbell, bass player for Ruby Riot heading for the big time. Not Will Campbell, failing Arts student trying to keep his parents happy.
“What the fuck do I do? I tried this time! Really tried. I’m shit at history.”
“Man, if coming back to uni sucks this much, find a job instead.”
No way. As long as I’m here, I have cash flow from my parents. I promised that when Ruby Riot started making more money, I’d pay them back a thousand times over. Behind their smiles of agreement, I see what they really think: never going to happen.
“I can’t. I’m not doing some shitty job at a supermarket while I wait for Ruby to come back to the band.”
“Well, suck it up, princess. Keeps Mum and Dad off our backs if we get a ‘proper’ qualification.”
“When do you think they’ll believe we can make a living from the band?”
“When we actually do. The album launches next month, we have a few small gigs lined up. A bit of cash. Ruby’s coming.”
“With her kid?”
“Dunno. Maybe baby-daddy Jem will come and babysit.”
I laugh; we both do, at the image of Jem Jones – bad-mouthed, bad attitude, reformed addict – with a baby as his new accessory. “I’d pay to see that. Reckon he changes nappies?”
Nate screws his face up. “Dude, I’m eating.”
I steal one of his chips and watch the other students around. Most pay little attention to us, although we have hangers-on some days. Their belief we’re partying rock stars draws them to us, and the partying is one of the reason for my bad grades.
Nate slurps from his can of energy drink. “There’s a study group if you’re that worried.”
I stare. “Study group? Are you mad? I suppose that’s a group of chicks who meet in the evenings in the library and argue about feminist interpretations of history. Like the one in my class, can’t remember her name. Jeez, she doesn’t shut up and the guy teaching the class hardly gets a word in. No wonder I’m not learning anything.”
“Just a suggestion.” He pushes my paper across the table. “Fail this semester and you’ll be stacking supermarket shelves.”
“As if! What about the album? We’re gonna be big.”
“There’s no guarantee, you know that.” Nate stands. “Whose turn is it to go to the Shakespeare class this afternoon? Yours?”
“Oh crap, no, please don’t make me sit through that again. I bloody hate Shakespeare.” I stand too.
“Your name sake? No affinity there? What did you expect when you signed up for Lit as part of your degree?”
“Please,” I beg. “Do this. After that shit mark, I’m not in the mood.”
Nate wrinkles his nose at my pleading look. “Fine, but you do the next two classes.”
“I love you, man.” I grab the side of his face and kiss his cheek hard.
Nate pushes me off. “Jesus, Will!”
He hauls his messenger bag across his shoulders and wanders away. Slumping back in my seat, I chew my lip. Study group sounds like a viable option. Unfortunately.



I flick the switch in the library study room and the strip light illuminates the screwed up paper and abandoned pens from the last occupants. Muttering, I grab the bin and dump everything in. Some moron has spilled a sticky drink on one of the wooden chairs and I pull it away from the table. Four chairs are enough for the group.
A select handful of history student friends and I meet here once a week to combine our research and share ideas. We’re aiming to go onto post-grad study, and our co-operation makes sense. We’re in this together, not competing.
Some of the group failed the last paper and even I dropped below eighty percent, which hasn’t happened since my first year. Our understanding of late twentieth century European history needs work and we’ve decided that’s where we’ll focus tonight. Dragging my textbook from the bag and dumping it on the desk, I sit. Laptop open, pen out, and I’m ready.
Nita arrives first; her thick black hair pulled into a ponytail and a worried expression on her face. I’m surprised when Steph enters the room; we had a huge argument in the last session, and we haven’t spoken since. Steph doesn’t like to be wrong; neither do I, so we have issues. Her mark must’ve been really bad if she came back. The fourth member of our happy gang, Sam, wanders in after we’ve started, as usual.
“How’d everybody go with the paper?” I ask.
A variety of displeased grunts is my answer.
“Bombed. What about you?” asks Sam.
“I passed.”
Nita glances at Sam. “Told you she would.”
Steph mutters, “We failed.”
“Well, the next one we’ll all pass,” I say attempting to inject some enthusiasm into the room. “Did everybody bring their textbooks?”
“Yes, Miss,” says Sam with a chuckle.
They can tease all they like, but I’m serious about my ambitions. Since I was a kid, my life revolved around books. Learning. Understanding. When I start my PhD, I’ll teach first year classes part-time too. I admit I’m practicing on my trio of study friends.
“The website links they gave us for research were crap,” says Sam. “I ended up going in circles and more confused.”
“Maybe we’ll map out the best ones today?” I suggest. “Some must be easier to navigate.” I pull up the bookmarks on my laptop.
The door opens and I glance up, annoyed at the interruption. A tall guy stands in the doorway. If it wasn’t obvious who he is, the Ruby Riot t-shirt stretched across his muscled chest is a giveaway. A half-smile plays across his mouth, one I remember from a couple of weeks ago. He pushes long fingers through his dark, spiked fringe as he looks over.
Nate Campbell. Or Will.
Whoever he is, this is one of the big-headed rock star twins. I don’t care which, because after Will’s behaviour at the party whoever he is can get the hell out. I wait for him to close the door and walk away. He doesn’t.
“Yes?” I ask.
“This the history group?”
“Cool.” He drags a spare chair from the corner of the room to the table.
“What are you doing?”
“Joining your group. To study.” Without waiting for an invitation, he sits and folds his tattooed arms on the desk. “That okay?”
“Depends. Which twin are you? Will or Nate?”
The guy studies me, and I return his scrutiny, looking for a sign of guilt or embarrassment over his treatment of me at the party. If there’s any chance at all that this is Will, he can bloody leave.
“Which one do you want me to be?”
I scowl at him. “I think you know which one I don’t want you to be. You were both there.” There’s no sign on his face of guilt, either this is Nate or Will’s too arrogant to care.
The guy ignores the response. “Is it because I have to ask nicely?” He clears his throat. “Please may I join your study group?”
Nita giggles and I glance at her. Great, she’s wide-eyed and silly because a Campbell is in the room with us. Steph looks less impressed, but Sam joins Nita in his interest.
“Why are you back at uni, man? Thought you guys made it big.”
Possibly-Nate-maybe-Will shrugs. “Want to finish my degree. Back-up plan and all that.”
“And you want to join us?” I ask, not wanting to waste time on his life story.
“Is that a problem?” asks Nita.
“I suppose not.”
“Welcome,” says Sam.
I glower at Sam; but despite my delusions, I’m not in charge here.


Is Fleur the leader of the group? Or does she just set herself up to be? If I tell her I’m Will, she’ll kick my ass straight out of here. Without replying which of the twins I am, I pull out my laptop. If this group is worth the time, I’ll figure out how to talk Fleur around. She introduces me to the rest of the group then returns to her laptop.
After the party, Nate questioned my drunken decision to hit on Fleur, and I shrugged him off, told him I wasn’t serious and just teasing. Truth is, I was serious, and I wasn’t teasing. Yeah, totally screwed up my chances now, but I have a thing for Fleur. I’m not sure how to define the ‘thing’. Fleur isn’t my type of girl. I prefer an edgy look. Ever since I saw her in a lecture two years ago, blonde hair falling across her face as she squeezed past me to take a seat nearby with her friend, I’ve fantasised about her. Okay, truth is when I stood to let her pass, her ass brushed against me, and that was the trigger for my fantasies. And my dick.
For a few weeks afterwards, I looked for an opportunity to talk to her; but hundreds attend my history lectures, and we were never assigned the same seminars. Fleur never noticed me, or if she did, never wanted to talk to me. I’ve seen her at parties in the past, but usually with a guy.
By the second year, I decided her lack of attention was what kept my crush going.
This year, she’s in a couple of Nate’s classes; and on the occasions I’ve taken them for him, she hasn’t spoken to or looked at me. Nate has nothing to apologise for, but she’s sour faced with me-him too. I guess we’re both on her shit list. Maybe something to do with the picture of me and her appearing on Instagram with a comment about how cute she is. The image was only up a few hours before I sobered up and took it down. Good thing I’m not as interesting as Jax, when he posted a picture of him and Tegan the world went bat-shit crazy.
Still, Fleur does weird things to me without trying, and I’d kill to get my hands on her. Chances of that happening now have moved from slim to none.
I shake out of my thoughts, aware I’m glazing over. Already, I’m lost and crane my neck to look at Nita’s laptop. “What are we doing?” I whisper.
“Checking out H-Net site.”
“Oh. What’s that?”
“Research site. Don’t you have the link?” she whispers back.
“Are you okay?” asks Fleur.
“I can’t find the site,” I reply.
“The one we signed up to at the beginning of last year?”
Crap. “I haven’t signed up yet.”
Fleur looks at me as if I’m from another planet. “Are you seriously telling me you’ve never once used this site? The key site? Did you actually pass anything?”
“Not much. I guess that’s one answer to why I failed most of last year.”
“Sign up now, then.”
“Don’t have passwords.”
“Well, I guess there’s no point you being here.”
I hold Fleur’s pissed off gaze, amused by her haughty attitude. “It’s okay. I’ll watch and learn.” I shift closer to Nita whose friendly smile indicates my semi-star status helps me out. “You can email me some details later, can’t you?” I ask Nita.
The next hour dizzies me. I have screwed up my studies, big style. I need to go back to history assignment writing 101. Why did I slack off mid-last year when the excitement of rising fame hit? Swept up in the moment, I convinced myself I’d hit the big time and I wouldn’t need to bother anymore.
Fleur knows her shit. Everybody here does. If I hang with them, maybe some of their smarts will rub off on me. As they pack away their laptops and books, I overhear Nita chat to Fleur about some one-on-one help. Right. Fleur’s the smartest. Could I persuade her to give me some extra help too?
Not if she knows I’m Will.
My options are limited and one thing I’ve learned over the last hour is I need to be in this group. The days of achieving a decent grade on my own are gone. Yeah, I could put extra effort in alone, but I don’t want to spend half my life trawling the internet for answers. These guys know a shitload more than I do, and are willing to share.
“Am I allowed back?” I ask Fleur as Nita leaves.
“You never said who you were.”
Her big blue eyes delve into my conscience and, for a split second, I consider telling the truth. The problem is my conscience hasn’t played any part in my life recently.
“I’m Nate,” I say and hold out my hand.
Fleur looks at my hand but doesn’t take hold. “Your brother’s an arsehole.”
“Sometimes. But that doesn’t mean I am, right?”
Her straight blonde hair falls into her face as she bends over to fasten her bag. “Depends. You both have a reputation.”
“I promise I’ll behave,” I say and attempt to sound sincere.
Fleur continues to pack her things and doesn’t reply. Ah, well, it was worth a shot.
“If you think the group can help you, and if you leave the Campbell attitude outside the door, then okay.”
Score. “Easy done.”
Could she look anymore doubtful? “We’ll be here same time next week, 6 p.m., if you want to come back.”
“Thanks,” I say as she walks to the door.
Fleur pauses. “You’re welcome, but I suggest you do some study between now and then.”
“Let me buy you a coffee, say thanks properly?”
“I’m busy, but thanks for the offer.”
“Another time?”
“Let’s leave it at this, Nate,” she says and before I can respond, she leaves.
The realisation hits as the door clicks closed and my brain re-engages. I told her I was Nate.
Nate’s gonna lose his shit.



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About the Author

LisaSwallowLisa is an author of new adult romance and writes both paranormal and contemporary, often with a side of snark.
Lisa is originally from the UK but moved to Australia in 2001 and now lives in Perth in Western Australia with her husband, three children and dog.



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Release Day Launch for Hidden Ink by Carri Ann Ryan






Montgomery Ink Book 4.5

The Montgomery Ink series continues with the long-awaited romance between the café owner next door and the tattoo artist who’s loved her from afar.

Hailey Monroe knows the world isn’t always fair, but she’s picked herself up from the ashes once before and if she needs to, she’ll do it again. It’s been years since she first spotted the tattoo artist with a scowl that made her heart skip a beat, but now she’s finally gained the courage to approach him. Only it won’t be about what their future could bring, but how to finish healing the scars from her past.

Sloane Gordon lived through the worst kinds of hell yet the temptation next door sends him to another level. He’s kept his distance because he knows what kind of man he is versus what kind of man Hailey needs. When she comes to him with a proposition that sends his mind whirling and his soul shattering, he’ll do everything in his power to protect the woman he cares for and the secrets he’s been forced to keep.

Now Available:

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About the Author


New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Carrie Ann Ryan never thought she’d be a writer. Not really. No, she loved math and science and even went on to graduate school in chemistry. Yes, she read as a kid and devoured teen fiction and Harry Potter, but it wasn’t until someone handed her a romance book in her late teens that she realized that there was something out there just for her. When another author suggested she use the voices in her head for good and not evil, The Redwood Pack and all her other stories were born.

Carrie Ann is a bestselling author of over twenty novels and novellas and has so much more on her mind (and on her spreadsheets *grins*) that she isn’t planning on giving up her dream anytime soon.

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Release Week Blitz for Love in the Light by Laura Kaye



We cannot tell you how excited we are to bring you the Release Week Blitz for LOVE IN THE LIGHT by Laura Kaye! LOVE IN THE LIGHT is a novel told in dual POV and Part Two of her bestselling Hearts in Darkness Duet. This much anticipated follow-up is finally here! Make sure you grab your copy of this sexy novel today, and if you’re new to the series you can grab the first novella HEARTS IN DARKNESS for just $.99 for a limited time!


Love in the Light 
Laura Kaye
Publication date: January 12th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance


About LOVE IN THE LIGHT (Hearts in Darkness Duet #2):

Two hearts in the darkness…

Makenna James and Caden Grayson have been inseparable since the day they were trapped in a pitch-black elevator and found acceptance and love in the arms of a stranger. Makenna hopes that night put them on the path to forever—which can’t happen until she introduces her tattooed, pierced, and scarred boyfriend to her father and three over-protective brothers.

Must fight for love in the light…

Haunted by a childhood tragedy and the loss of his family, Caden never thought he’d find the love he shares with Makenna. But the deeper he falls, the more he fears the devastation sure to come if he ever lost her, too. When meeting her family doesn’t go smoothly, Caden questions whether Makenna deserves someone better, stronger, and just more…normal. Maybe they’re too different—and he’s far too damaged—after all…



“So Caden said you two met in an elevator,” the tattoo artist said to Makenna, amusement plain in his voice.

​“We really did. We were trapped in it for over four hours,” Makenna said, smiling. It was a little weird to talk to someone she couldn’t look at, but she couldn’t move while he was working. “In my office building. I rode it just today.”

“That’s quite a way to meet someone,” Heath said with a chuckle. “How come nothing like that ever happens to me?”

“Maybe you don’t ride enough elevators,” Makenna said.

​The tattoo machine pulled away from her skin. Heath laughed. “I guess I don’t,” he finally said, leaning back in.

​The needles hit a sensitive spot along her spine that had Makenna grimacing. Originally, she’d been thinking of putting the piece on her shoulder, but when she’d decided on the bigger size, she thought it would look better in the center. Heath had warned her that the central placement meant inking over bone, which could hurt more, and it sure did.

​Caden braced his elbows on his knees so he could lean closer. “Want to play twenty questions?” he asked.

​She smiled, knowing he was trying to distract her and appreciating the heck out of the gesture. “Are there still questions left we haven’t asked each other?”

​“Probably,” he said. “For example, I don’t think I’ve ever asked you your favorite sex position.”

“No laughing,” Heath said, as Makenna tried to hold back her humor. Heat filled her cheeks. “Also, TMI. However, I like TMI, so feel free to answer, Makenna.”

​Since the needle was away from her skin, she did laugh that time. “Okay, so maybe there are questions we haven’t asked.” She winked at Caden as Heath got back to work. “And, to answer the question, the second part of the night on my floor.”

Caden’s gaze went molten. He flicked at the spider bite piercings with his tongue. And that had parts of her going molten, because she knew how freaking talented that tongue was.

​“Yours?” she asked, arching an eyebrow.


Love in the Light - Teaser 1


“Readers that have been anxiously waiting for more of this story will be thrilled with the passionate and poignant way Kaye dives back in with this complicated and much loved couple. Love in the Light will have readers falling in love with Caden and Makenna all over again!” ~ Jay Crownover, New York TimesBestselling Author of the Marked Men Series

“Sexy, emotional and incredibly heartwarming, fans of Laura Kaye won’t be disappointed!” ~ Monica Murphy, New York Times Bestselling Author of the One Week Girlfriend Quartet

“Laura Kaye has a gift for writing beautifully damaged men and Caden Grayson leads the pack with enough vulnerability to twist your heart in knots.” ~ Tessa Bailey, New York Times Bestselling Author of the Line of Duty Series

“This book delivers – sweet romance, smoking hot sex, an entire tissue box full of angsty drama, and such love shining off the pages that it will blind you.” ~ Christi Barth, Author of the Shore Secrets Series

“This follow up to one of the most beloved couples in romance is delivered in the emotional and touching way that only Laura Kaye can do. Love in the Light is everything I could have wanted for Makenna and Caden–and more!” ~ Jillian Stein, Read-Love-Blog

Love in the Light - Teaser 2

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And don’t miss the first title, Hearts in Darkness, at 99 cents!

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About the Author


Author PhotoLaura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over twenty books in contemporary and paranormal romance and romantic suspense. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. She lives in Maryland with her husband, two daughters, and cute-but-bad dog, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.

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Blog Tour for Built by Jay Crownover


We are absolutely thrilled to bring you the Review/Excerpt Tour for BUILT by Jay Crownover! BUILT is a Contemporary Romance novel being published by HarperCollins, and it is the 1stfull-length novel in The Saints of Denver Series, a spinoff of her New York Times bestsellingMarked Men Series. This amazing book releases on January 5th!

Studio portrait of young bearded man --- Image by © pinkypills/CorbisBuilt (Saints of Denver #1)

By: Jay Crownover
Release Day: January 5th, 2016
Publisher: Harper Collins

Format: eARC
Source: InkSlinger PR


From the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Marked Men books comes an electrifying new spin-off series,Saints of Denver, featuring all the characters fans have been dying to read about.

Sayer Cole and Zeb Fuller couldn’t be more different. She’s country club and fine-dining, he’s cell-block and sawdust. Sayer spends her days in litigation, while Zeb spends his working with his hands. She’s French silk, he’s all denim and flannel.

Zeb’s wanted the stunning blonde since the moment he laid eyes on her. It doesn’t matter how many smooth moves he makes, the reserved lawyer seems determinedly oblivious to his interest—either that or she doesn’t return it. Sayer is certain the rough, hard, hot-as-hell Zeb could never want someone as closed off and restrained as she is, which is a shame because something tells her he might be the guy to finally melt her icy exterior.

But just as things start to heat up, Zeb is blindsided by a life altering moment from his past. He needs Sayer’s professional help to right a wrong and to save more than himself. He can’t risk what’s at stake just because his attraction to Sayer feels all consuming. But as these opposites dig in for the fight of their lives, battling together to save a family, the steam created when fire and ice collide can no longer be ignored.

Buy Links:

Amazon US ** iBooks ** Barnes & Noble ** Kobo

BUILT - Tour Teaser 2

review5 Rating
*Advanced Readers Copy received in exchange for an honest review*


First off all I love Jay Crownover and when I saw there is a blog tour for this book; I jumped for the change to read this book because I couldn’t wait for the release day! Anyway this book was fantastic. This book had romance, love, swoon worthy men, a broken yet strong woman who is scared to open up to the guy. Also there was a lot of hot sexual chemistry which I loved.

Now I’m not someone who likes guys with beards but Zeb is one with an exception. He is strong and talented with his hands. He had to do something after coming out of prison. So he went into restoring and building houses, which he did for Sayer. She loved him in the house and when he finished with the remodelling made her miss him so much. She couldn’t sleep much because she kept dreaming of him. Zeb wanted Sayer the moment he met her and he would not give up on her even when she kept pushing him away. One day Zeb got a visit from a stranger that rocked his life and Sayer is the only one who can help him with that. Sayer saw how hard Zeb worked for the one other thing that is important to him. He did all he could to get what he wanted but yet Sayer started to bend for him, her walls started to crumble around him.

I always loved the men in the Marked Men series so I enjoyed cameo from the characters in that series. I loved that Rowdy saw right though Sayer whenever Zeb was mentioned. Loving that Zeb melted Sayer’s heart every time he was near her. I mean he got her to open up and not to be afraid of what people might think of her anymore. I like that she loves all those bright colours and Zeb is the one who started the change for her but she had to fight for herself as well.

Anyway I am really rambling… I loved this book like I love all of Jay Crownover’s novels. She just knows how to write amazing books with swoon worthy sexy men who just knows how to show a girl a fun time. I would easily reread this book.

The moment I got the ARC  I made sure read this immediately and I read it in one day. This was such a great book with so much emotions and happiness. This book ended with a HEA and I can’t wait to read more books from this author. Trust me guys you should get off your asses and read this book now, you won’t regret it!


BUILT - Tour Teaser 1


 I met her at a bar.
​She had a beer bottle in her hand even though she looked like she should be sipping champagne out of an expensive flute, and that inexplicably turned me on. She was pretty and looked completely out of place in the no-name bar sitting across from one of my longtime friends who also happened to be her long-lost brother. He was the reason she was here. In that split second that I laid my eyes on her I wanted to be the reason she stayed.
​I knew it was rude and that the two of them needed some time together, some time to figure out what they were to each other now that she had blasted into his life unannounced. If I was a better friend I would have left them alone. As it was, I made my way over to the tiny table and sat down. I was covered in sawdust and had drywall mud caked in the hair on my head and on my face, but she didn’t flinch or bat an eyelash when I purposely broke up their party of two and placed myself as close to her as I could without actually touching her.
​My buddy Rowdy St. James lifted his eyebrows at me as I stared at her while he introduced us. Sayer Cole. Even her name was elegant and sophisticated sounding. She was an enigma, this pretty woman that seemed like she should be in any place but this bar with the two of us. She’d showed up out of the blue a couple of months ago claiming to be Rowdy’s half-sister, claiming that they shared a father, claiming that all she wanted was to be in his life and have some kind of family of her own. She looked too delicate to be that brave. Came across as way too proper to have said “fuck it all” and picked up her life to move it someplace unknown without being sure of her welcome. She looked like silk, but if my guess was right about her, it was silk wrapped around steel.


And don’t miss the previous novella in The Saints of Denver Series!

LEVELED - cover


About the author

Jay Crownover - author pic

About Jay Crownover:

Jay Crownover is the New York Times and USA Todaybestselling author of the Marked Men and The Point series. Like her characters, she is a big fan of tattoos. She loves music and wishes she could be a rock star, but since she has no aptitude for singing or instrument playing, she’ll settle for writing stories with interesting characters that make the reader feel something. She lives in Colorado with her three dogs.

Website ** Blog ** Facebook ** Twitter

BUILT Goodreads ** Jay Crownover Goodreads

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Release Week Blitz for BUILT by Jay Crownover


We are so excited to bring you the Release Week Blitz for BUILT by Jay Crownover. BUILT is a Contemporary Romance novel being published by HarperCollins, and it is the 1st full-length novel in The Saints of Denver Series, a spinoff of her New York Timesbestselling Marked Men Series. This amazing book is out now so grab your copy today! And be sure to check out the awesome sweepstakes! Info and links below!

Built (Saints of Denver #1)
By: Jay Crownover
Release Day: January 5th, 2016
Publisher: Harper Collins

From the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Marked Men books comes an electrifying new spin-off series,Saints of Denver, featuring all the characters fans have been dying to read about.

Sayer Cole and Zeb Fuller couldn’t be more different. She’s country club and fine-dining, he’s cell-block and sawdust. Sayer spends her days in litigation, while Zeb spends his working with his hands. She’s French silk, he’s all denim and flannel.

Zeb’s wanted the stunning blonde since the moment he laid eyes on her. It doesn’t matter how many smooth moves he makes, the reserved lawyer seems determinedly oblivious to his interest—either that or she doesn’t return it. Sayer is certain the rough, hard, hot-as-hell Zeb could never want someone as closed off and restrained as she is, which is a shame because something tells her he might be the guy to finally melt her icy exterior.

But just as things start to heat up, Zeb is blindsided by a life altering moment from his past. He needs Sayer’s professional help to right a wrong and to save more than himself. He can’t risk what’s at stake just because his attraction to Sayer feels all consuming. But as these opposites dig in for the fight of their lives, battling together to save a family, the steam created when fire and ice collide can no longer be ignored.

Buy Links:

Amazon US ** iBooks ** Barnes & Noble ** Kobo


BUILT - RWB - Teaser 2



He took a step closer to me and put his finger under my chin so that I had no choice but to look at that darkening green gaze. “You know what is a big deal?”
Without thinking I put my wet hand on the center of his chest and watched as my handprint covered the place where his heart was thudding heavy and strong. He felt so vital and real, like everything I had had my hands on before him was just make-believe.
“What?” My voice came out more of a whisper than anything else.
“We hung out, I bought you dinner, we talked about our families and shit. We shared. This was a date, Sayer. Maybe not the best first date ever but it was still a date, so you know what that means.”
I did? I was still trying to get my head around the fact that it really had been kind of a date when his head lowered toward mine and my lips tickled as his beard got close enough to brush against them.
“It means we went on a date, so now you should absolutely put your hands on my dick…a lot. My gentlemanly tendencies only reach so far and with you they have about reached the end of the line.”
I gulped a little. “Oh.” That sounded like so many different kinds of dangerous and delicious. I had never asked him to be a gentleman, and frankly one of the reasons I was so attracted to him was because he seemed so rugged and untamed by the conventions I was used to and bored to death by.
“Yeah, oh…which I fully intend to make you say over and over again while I’m as deep inside of you as I can get.”
When his mouth settled over mine, it was an entirely different mess I was suddenly worried about. There was going to be no cleaning up the wreckage that was going to be left of my heart and body when this man was done with me and that felt entirely like a great big deal even though I was helpless to stop it. It was one mess I intended to embrace and not apologize for even if that went against everything I had ingrained deep down within the very core of me.

Enter to Win a Trip to the MILE HIGH AUTHOR EVENT from Jay Crownover!

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BUILT - RWB - Teaser 1

And don’t miss the previous novella in The Saints of Denver Series!

LEVELED - cover


About the author

Jay Crownover - author pic

About Jay Crownover:

Jay Crownover is the New York Times and USA Todaybestselling author of the Marked Men and The Point series. Like her characters, she is a big fan of tattoos. She loves music and wishes she could be a rock star, but since she has no aptitude for singing or instrument playing, she’ll settle for writing stories with interesting characters that make the reader feel something. She lives in Colorado with her three dogs.

Website ** Blog ** Facebook ** Twitter

BUILT Goodreads ** Jay Crownover Goodreads


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Cover Reveal for Entangled by Alex Rosa

I am so excited to share the cover of Entangled by Alex Rosa with you! This is the fantastic sequel to Tryst and it’s coming out June 2016. Check out this excerpt and enter her giveaway!


About Entangled:

In the emotional and dramatic sequel to Tryst, Skyler and Blake’s relationship is finally out in the open. But as new challenges open up old wounds, their love is put to the ultimate test…


Blake is desperate to be the kind of man that Skyler deserves, but with his latest film putting him on the verge of superstardom, being there for her is growing harder and harder. As his filming schedule takes him on the road and away from the woman he loves, he discovers that being in a public, committed relationship is no easy task—especially from two thousand miles away.


Skyler wants Blake to pursue his dreams, but his constant absence weighs on her more than she admits. Even as she throws herself into new distractions, she finds herself facing uncertainties and jealousies that could tear apart everything they’ve built. And when disaster strikes while Blake is away, she’ll have to decide if their passion is worth the pain…

Goodreads Link

Catch up on the Series: Amazon | Barnes & Noble



Exclusive Excerpt:

Josh shakes his head, admonishing me. “Help your bro out and tie his tie.”

Lifting his chin upward to signal my help, I giggle. “You wear a tie nearly every day. Why the help all of a sudden?”

Blake’s ego make’s a surprise appearance from behind me as he quips, “It’s got to be because of his girl. What is it this week, Josh?”

Josh’s stare frosts over, but if anything, among his anger I sense a bit of fear as he grunts, “Shut up, Blake.”

Blake sticks his hands in his pockets, and struts around us, nose in the air. “C’mon, man. Don’t act like I don’t know you. There are only two things that make you nervous as hell. One, is spiders, you pussy. The second, well, that’s easy —commitment.”

My throat goes dry as I loop my brother’s tie into a Windsor knot. I mean, this conversation is perfectly normal, but let’s not forget Josh is my brother, and his girlfriend, Vanessa, is one of my best friends. The idea of throwing commitment into the already awkward equation throws me.

I peer up from my tying to see Josh already staring at me apprehensively. He chews the inside of his cheek, and releases a huff. “I’m not a commitment-phobe.”

Why is it I feel like I’m intruding on their conversation as I make my final adjustment to my brother’s tie?

Blake swivels around, smug and smiling, as if proud to admit whatever he’s about to say. “Bullshit. You and I both know we avoid commitment. It’s practically why we became friends. We understand each other. We avoid commitment by nature, but hey, that was until we met girls that handed our hearts to us on a silver platter, right?”

Josh cannot fight his agreeing chuckle, but tries to cover it up as he shoots me an apologetic smirk. “I guess I can’t argue with that. Vanessa’s worth it though. And don’t forget, you break my sisters heart, I ruin you.”

“Oh, ruin me? No death threats this time?” Blake goads with more attitude than I think he intends.

Josh turns around to face him, and it almost seems playful. I’m hopeful for an element of normality between them.

“I think it’s fair to assume both.”

Blake clicks his tongue, and I hate that I think Blake looks hot when he goes into alpha-asshole mode when I know I should be scolding him, but then again, sometimes it’s good to stand up to Josh.

“What makes you think she won’t break my heart?” Blake brazenly retorts.

There’s a pause in the room, and both men swing their stare to me.

Do I look like a deer in the headlights? Because I feel like one.

The thought never crossed my mind that I would ever break anyone’s heart, let alone Blake’s. I consider my college friend and tutor, Richard Bennett, as a possible broken heart when I denied his advances, but he ran back into the arms of his ex, Heather, so it seems far from fair for it to qualify.

Josh smiles warmly at me before turning back to Blake. “Skye? She can barely kill ants. What makes you think she would do the heart breaking when you’re far more experienced in that department?”

Blake’s angular face blushes an adorable pink that’s so unlike him as he bashfully turns away, avoiding Josh’s glare. “Because I love her, man. Duh. She holds all the cards. When have you ever heard me say that?”

Josh swallows down the idea before huffing, “I don’t know how I expect to get used to hearing that.”

With Josh’s back to me I release my full ear-to-ear grin at hearing Blake. He peers over Josh’s shoulder to purposefully lock his stare with mine. The delicate, and charming wrinkling around his eyes confirms everything, and more.

I’m caught in his spell as I pull in a deep inhale, eager to breathe him in, touch him, feel him —to just be near him. He knows it too as the corner of his mouth arches upward, and it’s as if he’s beckoning me.

Josh, sensing the forming tractor beam going right past his face turns his body, which only gives me the opening I need to begin my sprint into Blake’s arms.

Blake pulls his hands out of his pockets just in time to catch me.

I look up into my favorite emerald eyes, trying to speak in a whisper, “You don’t have to say things like that, you know?” thinking that maybe he says them to prove something, whether it’s to me or Josh.

He runs the tip of his nose down the bridge of mine, and that perfect bubble forms around us, and I haven’t got a care in the world.

“I know I don’t have to, but I want to. It’s the truth, isn’t it?”

Josh adjusts his throat loudly, rolling his eyes as he does it. Blake and I turn our attention to him.

“Spare me the PDA until I get used it, will you?” Josh snaps.

Blake defiantly drags his hands down my back, getting dangerously close to my ass. This time I’m the one who wants to roll my eyes, but it’s hard to ignore my body buzzing with anticipation at the movement.

Could we NOT do this front of my brother, please?


Alex Rosa Bio:

Alex RosaAlex Rosa lives in San Diego, California. When she isn’t scouring city parks or cafe’s to write she is more than likely trying to convince her friends to join her on her next adventure. A sufferer of wanderlust, she is always looking for a new mountain to climb, a canyon to hike, or a plane to board. Her resume consists of coroner, to working at a zoo, and most recently as an executive assistant, but finds her home amongst words, whether it be in books, or in film. Her obsessions are on the brink of bizarre, but that’s just the way she likes it.











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