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Unexpectedly Hers: The Slopes of Her Secrets are Steep

bookreview

Unexpectedly Hers (Sterling Canyon, #3)

Unexpectedly Hers (Sterling Canyon #3)
by Jamie Beck
Chick Lit / Contemporary / Romance
282 Pages
Montlake Romance
Publication Date:  February 21st, 2017
Get a copy here!

BLURB: 

By day, bashful wallflower Emma Duffy works at her family’s bed-and-breakfast. By night, she secretly pens erotic romance hot enough to melt the snow in their cozy Rockies town.

But Emma’s real life is about to heat up when her mother books the entire inn to a professional snowboarder, hoping the publicity will put them on the map. In a karmic twist of fate, that guest is Wyatt Lawson, the man with whom Emma had shared the secret one-night stand that became the inspiration for her novel and its dreamy hero. Worse, a film crew is documenting his comeback just as her debut is about to hit the shelves. Emma’s only saving grace is that Wyatt doesn’t remember her—and hopefully he never will.

When Wyatt arrives in Sterling Canyon for several weeks of intense training, the last tumble he expects to take is falling for a girl, especially one as shy as Emma. Unlike groupies with their hidden agendas, she isn’t using him—or so he believes…until the film crew uncovers Emma’s pen name and steamy novel.

Wyatt’s comeback run can withstand a fall or two, but can his heart recover from this crash and burn?

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

jamie-beck-press2 (3).jpg Jamie Beck is a Romance Writers of America Honor Roll author with a passion for writing stories about love and redemption, including her best selling St. James and Sterling Canyon series. When she’s not writing, you can find her dancing around her kitchen or hitting the slopes in Utah and Vermont. Above all, she’s a grateful wife and mother to a very patient and supportive family.

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook | Amazon

3.75Penguins
Quick Reasons: cutesy contemporary; shy wallflower to strong woman plot; mostly believable romance; the ending seemed a little too easy; unexplained girl hate; weird, though believable, family dynamics; interesting look into the many layers of guilt

Huge thanks to Jamie Beck, Montlake Romance, and PR By the Book for sending me a free digital galley of this title in exchange for an honest review! This in no way altered my read of or opinions on this book!

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So first things first: I was super nervous, when I received this book for review, that I’d be stepping into the middle of a story and wind up SUPER confused (or, at the very least, super spoiled on the previous two novels). Much to my surprise, this read like a standalone novel–in fact, I was immediately immersed in the story and SO admire the way Jamie Beck both brought back the recurring/previous characters, while still allowing this novel to stand apart and be read on its own. That being said, now that I’ve had a chance to look up the previous two novels, there ARE a few spoiler-y moments I encountered….but in the end, they’re so minute and tiny, I feel as if I could still backtrack and read those two novels without too much fuss.

The romance in this particular read is super believable and SO, SO steamy–seriously, my poor penguin beak about melted off my face during certain sexy moments, though Jamie Beck wrote them to remain tasteful enough that sensitive readers won’t have problems reading the scenes. While there are some moments of tension/plot-heavy action…the book, for the most part, is more focused upon the characters and their changes/growth journeys. Emma’s story, in particular, was super sweet and endearing to read–her growth from shy wallflower into strong, comfortable-with-herself woman has become something of an inspiration for me, to be honest. I really, really enjoyed following her through these events of her life!

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I was a little bit disappointed with how quickly things are resolved in the end. I felt like Wyatt left Emma with SO much drama and anger, only to “suddenly” realize how right she was for him after seeing her again several weeks later. It felt a bit contrived, honestly, and wasn’t entirely believable for me. While I understand forgiveness, I felt like Wyatt’s complete 180 in emotions was a bit TOO quick in coming.

Still, I had a ton of fun getting to know these characters and visiting their sleepy Colorado town. The fact that the settings are so close to my home (Wyoming girl, here!) brought about a fair amount of nostalgia–though I have to admit, I still don’t miss the cold or snow! I definitely recommend this read to lovers of chick lit, contemporary romances, and character-focused plots. Put on your goggles and strap in, penguins–these slopes are steep!

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Blog Tour, Teasers, Giveaway, and Review: Lords of Love and Legends

From USA Today Bestselling and
National Award-winning Authors
Allie Mackay, Brenda Jernigan and Sue-Ellen Welfonder

Four magical tales of timeless desire

Cover

LORDS OF LOVE AND LEGENDS

Allie Mackay, Brenda Jernigan, Sue-Ellen Welfonder

Genre: Historical Romance, Scottish Romance, Regency Romance
Series: Legends Series, Book 2
Publisher: Scott Publishing
Publication Date: January 9, 2017

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Lords of Love and Legends introduces you to lords and ladies who live and love in a world of magic and enchantment. The long ago days we dream about is their reality. In this collection, our heroes and heroines will take you there. Along the way, you’ll see them meet and fall in love, and you’ll share their happy-ever-after ending.

We’d like to thank you for joining them. We’ll leave the page here so they can whisk you away.

Teaser

USA Today Bestselling and National Award-winning Authors Sue-Ellen Welfonder (aka Allie Mackay) and Brenda Jernigan sweep you into a long ago world of breathtaking passion and adventure where myth and legend was real, danger abounded, and lords and ladies risked everything for love!

Winter Fire by Sue-Ellen Welfonder… When a Highland lass meets a dashing stranger in an enchanted place, she gladly gives her heart – and her passion – to the lover she only knows as the Lord of Winter.

The Duke’s Lady by Brenda Jernigan… If you yearn for classic romance with noblemen, ladies, and intrigue, complete with a magnificent Cornish setting, this is your tale…

Some Like It Kilted by Allie Mackay… A legendary Highland chieftain and a modern American woman aren’t prepared for the passion that flares between them, or the ancient secrets that would tear them apart.

The Wicked Lady by Brenda Jernigan… If you like humor and a fun-filled read…this one is for you… When Trevor Claremont is blind-sided by a pickpocket, he isn’t prepared for the feisty redhead who he finds is one wicked lady.  Treat yourself to hours of reading enjoyment with this beautiful collection of unforgettable romance!

Purchase Links:

Grab your copy today. Lords of Love and Legends is available at:

Amazon

Giveaway

WIN
$10 Amazon Gift Card + eBook of Lords of Love and Legends!

Click here to join the contest now!

About the Authors

Allie Mackay

“Mackay is a master at penning magical tales of love across the ages.”
~ Fresh Fiction

Allie Mackay is the pseudonym for USA Today bestselling author Sue-Ellen Welfonder who won Romantic Times Best Historical Romance Award for her debut title, Devil in a Kilt. Many of her books have been RT Award nominees, and most have received RT Top Picks and K.I.S.S. Hero Awards. She is thrilled to be an Amazon All-Star Author, and a winner of InD’Tale’s RONE Award. Her favorite reader compliment is that her stories transport them to medieval Scotland, the setting of most of her books. She has three grand passions: Scotland, the paranormal, and animals. All can be found in her fun and sexy, light-hearted paranormal romances.

Brenda Jernigan

“Brenda Jernigan writes Romance, Adventure and Magic.”
~ Publisher’s Weekly

Brenda Jernigan is a Bestselling Author. Her books have been nominated for many awards – Book Seller’s Best Award, The Maggie Award, and The Holt Medallion Award. She grew up living the life of a tomboy – climbing trees, playing ball, and excluding starry-eyed romance from her daily repertoire.  Brenda discovered the love for books while taking her son to Story Hour at the local library – she was hooked.   She figured having the same birthday as Ernest Hemingway couldn’t hurt.

Sue-Ellen Welfonder

“Sue-Ellen Welfonder brings legends and love to life.”
~ Fresh Fiction

USA Today bestselling author Sue-Ellen Welfonder won Romantic Times Best Historical Romance Award for her debut title, Devil in a Kilt. Many of her books have been RT Award nominees, and have received RT Top Picks and K.I.S.S. Hero Awards. She is thrilled to be an Amazon All-Star Author, and a winner of InD’Tale’s RONE Award. Her favorite reader compliment is that her stories transport them to medieval Scotland, the setting of most of her books. She is also known for her strong heroines, Alpha heroes, and weaving Highland magic and humor into her tales.

Sue-Ellen also writes as Allie Mackay, penning contemporary paranormals, mostly set in the Scottish Highlands

Visit the author’s official websites
Allie Mackay: http://www.alliemackay.com
Brenda Jernigan: http://www.brendajbooks.com
Sue-Ellen Welfonder: http://www.welfonder.com/

Follow the authors on social media
Brenda Jernigan: Facebook | Twitter | Amazon| Goodreads
Sue-Ellen Welfonder: Facebook | Twitter | Newsletter

Book Tour Schedule

Follow the book tour. Ongoing till January 26, 2017.

Get tidbits, excerpts and other interesting, never before published articles about the book. Click here for the latest tour schedule.


bookreview

4.5Penguins
Quick Reasons: adorably cute, steamy romances; historical fiction AND ghosts; a ton of snark, fun, and quirk; these characters leap off the pages; I’ve branched out again, it seems; the butterflies are strong with this read; realistic, believable romances

Huge thanks to Brenda Jernigan and Sue-Ellen Welfonder/Allie MacKay; Scott Publishing; and Book Unleashed for sending me a free digital copy of this title in exchange for an honest review! This in no way changed my read of or opinions on this book.

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As I’m sure you’ve all noted, I’m not usually big on historical romances. I mean, I love romance, and I love historical fiction, so why I haven’t dipped my toes into this genre more is beyond me–I guess it comes down to the whole, “too much to read, not nearly enough time” thing. Having read this collection of novels, though… I think it’s safe to say I’m branching out yet again.

These stories are FILLED with all the good stuff–historical fiction, a slight tinge of the paranormal, steamy romances and action-filled plots. The relationships are believable and realistic. I found myself rooting for every couple, despite the different hardships and scenarios they faced. Together or apart, these characters were vibrant and leaped off the pages–bringing their personalities and complex quirks with them.

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I really enjoyed just how easy it was to settle into each story, as well. The authors know how to weave their words to draw a reader in and keep them enthralled, while still maintaining a suspension of disbelief that will leave you breathlessly anticipating every new page. There’s also a fun element of surprise–I went into each novel “blind,” and not knowing what to expect only helped me to enjoy the journey that much more. The snark ebbs and flows with the characters’ emotions, the humor was chuckle-inducing, and the butterflies! The butterflies were large and in charge for the entirety of this read.

Overall, I REALLY enjoyed this collection of novels, and will from here out probably be picking up more historical romances like these. These authors made this journey snark-filled, action-driven, and super steamy…and I cannot wait to pick up more of their works in the future. I recommend this collection to lovers of realistic romances, plots with just a hint of paranormal, and vibrantly written characters. Take a walk on the historical side, penguins; you might be surprised by what awaits you!

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Book Unleashed

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Sugar & Other Luxuries: The Internal Monologues could Put Shakespeare to Shame

bookreview

Sugar & Other Luxuries

Katherine Humphries wants to find the love of her life.

As a recovering perfectionist who hasn’t been on a date in five years, finding love is harder than she thought. Faced with beginning her twenty-sixth year of life insecure and living in Los Angeles where men and women either ignore or insult her curvy existence, Katherine decides to make dating her bitch. She’s not changing her curvy body. She won’t put down the dessert. And she isn’t going to apologize for any of it.

Her first night out ends nothing like she’d planned. When a flirty and rugged New Yorker asks for her phone number, Katherine freezes. She’s ready to give up before heartbreak happens. That is, until she meets a polyamorous, fairy-godmother-wanna-be, Hunter. The self proclaimed Queen of Pleasure coaches Katherine on badass, dating etiquette. Hunter’s first rule? Don’t fall in love. The second rule? Perfection doesn’t exist.

But when a bet with a sexy and sensitive music teacher changes her perspective on the dating game, Katherine learns that breaking badass rule #1 before loving every inch of herself might spell trouble. On the other hand, breaking rules might be exactly what Katherine needs to discover the true power of a woman’s body, the sugary sweetness of indulgence, and whether saying yes to her dream life against the wishes of advice-slinging friends will lead to heartache or harmony.

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Contemporary/Romance/Chick Lit
225 Pages
Publication Date:  April 4th, 2016
Get a copy here!

3.5Penguins
Quick Reasons: cutesy contemporary; unique, endearing characters; the internal monologues are both hilarious and, at times, really self-deprecating; realistic and true to life; there were some super entertaining, laugh-out-loud moments; Katherine is the sort of character we need more of in our reading lives

Huge thanks to Everly Scott and Xpresso Book Tours for sending me a free digital copy of this title in exchange for an honest review! This in no way altered my read of or opinions on this book.

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This is not the type of book I usually read, but PENGUINS, did this one call to me. First off–LOOK at that cover! It’s absolutely stunning. I love the pastels, the fact that the macaroons are in a china cup, how gorgeously soft the entire look is. It’s drool-worthy, okay, and it immediately caught my eye when I stumbled across it on social media or in my email or wherever it happened to be lurking on my internet when I found out about this book to begin with. Second, the blurb sounded SO intriguing and entertaining and exactly like the kind of book I needed to take a chance on…and I’m so so glad, having finished the read tonight, that I did.

Katherine is exactly the sort of fierce, realistic character I feel I’ve been lacking in my reads of late. Her inner monologues are snarky, hilarious, and just the tiniest bit self-deprecating at the start of the read. While normally, this would bother me…I found it endearing and realistic for this particular book. It worked for me; her flaws and quirks actually made me feel more connected to her than I expected. There are SO many gorgeously written, complex moments of character growth throughout this read–and I feel like more girls and women could learn some things about body positivity from the journey.

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This is, in the end, a cutesy contemporary with a very BIG message–we are all our own worst critics, every single one of us is human and beautifully flawed…and we should own the things that define us, that make us unique, instead of trying to push them below the surface or mold ourselves into somebody different. Of course, there are other, smaller morals laced throughout as well…but self-love? Self-acceptance? Self-confidence? Those are the big kickers, and I love how beautifully Everly Scott wrote them into this.

While just a bit out of my comfort zone, I had quite a bit of fun being taken on this journey! The characters are realistic and beautifully flawed, the morals are poignant and complex, and the snark that ensues in some of the internal monologues were absolutely hilarious. Katherine is the type of character I need more of in my life! I definitely recommend this to lovers of cutesy contemporaries, strong-willed and fierce women on the path to self-love, and endearing journeys. Plus, that cover is gorgeous enough to eat–so why not give it a taste?!