Saturday, June 24, 2017

Double Book Review: THE SEVEN HUSBANDS OF EVELYN HUGO by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Title: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo 
Author: Taylor Jenkins Reid 
Release Date: June 13th, 2017 
Genre: Contemporary Women 
In this entrancing novel “that speaks to the Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor in us all” (Kirkus Reviews), a legendary film actress reflects on her relentless rise to the top and the risks she took, the loves she lost, and the long-held secrets the public could never imagine.

Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now?

Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband has left her, and her professional life is going nowhere. Regardless of why Evelyn has selected her to write her biography, Monique is determined to use this opportunity to jumpstart her career.

Summoned to Evelyn’s luxurious apartment, Monique listens in fascination as the actress tells her story. From making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the ‘80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way, Evelyn unspools a tale of ruthless ambition, unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love. Monique begins to feel a very real connection to the legendary star, but as Evelyn’s story near its conclusion, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways
.

This. Book. You ever read a book and it's not what you thought it was going to be at all...it's better. That's this book. Reid has written an astoundingly beautiful book that will leave you breathless and reeling for more. 

I had been highly anticipating this book having heard so much about it already from magazines and reviewers. So when I got the chance to review, I jumped on the chance to dive into this book. And oh boy...did it leave me asking for more. I never wanted this book to end. 

It's so relevant without being shoved in your face and so contemporary in our time without actually being in our time. I found scenarios in this book that where like modern day and how we treat people, and how we act in society that resonated with me. This made the book so effortlessly beautiful. 

The story follows the life of Monique, a writer that works for a magazine just waiting for her big break. Her life isn't what she had planned for it to be. But quickly Monique's life is spinning out of control when she is asked to write a story over the gorgeous and mysteries Evelyn Hugo. 

After meeting Evelyn, she realizes nothing is as it seems and she isn't prepared for the story of a lifetime she is about to receive. Evelyn takes Monique on a journey and teaches her so much over such a short time. 

I found myself lost to this story and learning about the mystery of this Hollywood Scarlet. This is a book that I will remember for years to come and will definitely be re-reading. I'm utterly obsessed and I don't see that changing anytime soon. 
Until this year I had never read a book by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I don't know why, probably the curse of the never ending TBR. In February, I decided enough was enough and ended up binge reading MAYBE IN ANTHER LIFE and ONE TRUE LOVES back-to-back. I absolutely adored and devoured both of these books. I probably finished each one in less than 48 hours. TJR has captivating writing style. She really gets you thinking!


When I originally saw the synopsis for THE SEVEN HUSBANDS OF EVELYN HUGO, I thought to myself "this book really isn't for me." Mind you, this was prior to reading any of her books. After my TJR binge I knew I had to have this book. I needed more of her words and her stories. So when I saw the NetGalley request opportunity, I jumped at it!

Words I would use to describe this book: 
Unique. Captivating. Bold. 

THE SEVEN HUSBANDS OF EVELYN HUGO had a layout like nothing I've read before. It reads mostly as a narrative of Evelyn's life. Like I was Monique Grant, sitting there listening to Evelyn tell me her story. I was swept away by each tale and each husbands story. All the while I kept wondering and formulating ideas on WHY Evelyn had specifically wanted Monique to hear her story. Let me tell you, none of my ideas were right.

I want to note that the book touches on many different subjects that are "taboo" or that could potentially trigger someone. I'm not going to state what those are because I feel it would detract from the storyline. If you're someone that is sensitive to certain subjects or likes to know when a book has a trigger warning, well.... maybe don't read this book. At least not without asking around first.

Overall, I highly recommend this books and it quickly became one of my favorite reads this year. If you're in the mood for a quick, but deep read, this is the book for you. If you're looking for something new and fresh in the writing world, pick this one up! I can't wait to see what Taylor Jenkins Reed comes up with next.

*Thank you to NetGalley for providing an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review*

Taylor Jenkins Reid lives in Los Angeles and is the author of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo as well as One True Loves, Maybe in Another Life, and more. Her novels have been named best books of summer by People, US Weekly, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, InStyle, PopSugar, BuzzFeed, Goodreads, and others.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Cover Reveal: THE QUEEN'S RISING by Rebecca Ross

With gorgeous description and detailed rendering of a world where not everything and everyone are what they seem, Rebecca Ross weaves an intricate tale of revenge, loyalty, and, ultimately, self-discovery. Don’t miss the beautiful cover for Rebecca Ross’s debut young adult fantasy, THE QUEEN’S RISING, and pre-order your copy today!

 

When her seventeenth summer solstice arrives, Brienna desires only two things: to master her passion and to be chosen by a patron.

Growing up in the southern Kingdom of Valenia at the renowned Magnalia House should have prepared her for such a life. While some are born with an innate talent for one of the five passions—art, music, dramatics, wit, and knowledge—Brienna struggled to find hers until she belatedly chose to study knowledge. However, despite all her preparations, Brienna’s greatest fear comes true—the solstice does not go according to plan and she is left without a patron.

Months later, her life takes an unexpected turn when a disgraced lord offers her patronage. Suspicious of his intent, and with no other choices, she accepts. But there is much more to his story, and Brienna soon discovers that he has sought her out for his own vengeful gain. For there is a dangerous plot being planned to overthrow the king of Maevana—the archrival kingdom of Valenia—and restore the rightful queen, and her magic, to the northern throne. And others are involved—some closer to Brienna than she realizes.

With war brewing between the two lands, Brienna must choose whose side she will remain loyal to—passion or blood. Because a queen is destined to rise and lead the battle to reclaim the crown. The ultimate decision Brienna must determine is: Who will be that queen?

Add it to your Goodreads Now!

 

THE QUEEN’S RISING Pre-Order Links:

Amazon | Kobo | Barnes & Noble | HarperCollins


Rebecca Ross Bio: Rebecca Ross received her Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Georgia. In the past, she has worked at a Colorado dude ranch, as a school librarian, and as a live-time captionist for a college. She resides in Northeast Georgia with her husband and her dog. THE QUEEN’S RISING is her debut novel. Visit her on the web at www.rebeccarossauthor.com or on Twitter @_RebeccaRoss.          

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Review & Excerpt Tour: REVENGE by Lexi Blake



Title: Revenge
Series: A Lawless Novel, Book 3
Author: Lexi Blake
Release Date: June 20, 2017

Passion and danger collide in the latest contemporary romance featuring the Lawless siblings—from New York Times bestselling author Lexi Blake.
When Drew Lawless discovers a fatal flaw in his plan to avenge his parents’ deaths, he turns to the one woman he promised he wouldn't touch. He offers her a deal, one that will bring her into his investigation, his life, and his bed. 
Investigative reporter Shelby Gates never dreamed how twisted the case would become—or how fascinated she would be with Drew. Every day they spend together binds them. And every night brings her closer to realizing he might be the man for her. 
As Drew's feelings for Shelby grow, so does the danger. From the streets of Dallas to Austin’s high-tech business world, Drew and Shelby play a game begun twenty years before—a game they will win, or die trying.

I've been waiting for the conclusion to this mystery since RUTHLESS was released last year. I was initially drawn to this series because of the cover on that book. But once I read the synopsis Lexi Blake had my interest and when I started reading those very first words I was completely hooked. The ending of book 2, SATISFACTION, left me with my heart racing and my jaw on the floor. I was not expecting that turn of events.

“She told us to back off or she would finish what she started all those years ago.”

For this review I think you need a bit of background on where this story began. More than 20 years ago the Lawless family is rocked with tragedy when Iris and Benedict Lawless are murdered and their children left for dead in a burning house. Convinced that this was no accident the 4 Lawless children seek revenge for their parents’ lives and uncovers secrets lies and truths no child should learn about the people they love.

“Having his whole world ripped out from under him could have an effect on even the kindest soul. Who would Drew Lawless be if his parents had lived?”

Brooding bad boy with a tortured past? Sign me up. All the siblings play a very prominent role throughout the series and I have been DYING for Drew’s story since the very beginning. Each of the Lawless novel follows a different brother. Book 1, RUTHLESS, is Riley’s story. Book 2, SATISFACTION, is Bran’s story. The long awaited final book, REVENGE, follows Andrew Lawless. The quiet nerd and biggest asshole may just be the most vulnerable of the Lawless brothers. Forced to stay strong when all was lost he’s has always been there for his siblings. As the oldest sibling Drew was thrown into parenthood earlier than any young man should be. He promised to take care of them and to find justice and revenge for their parents.

The dead have already found their peace. Revenge is nothing more than a selfish pursuit.

In their last efforts to find the answers they seek, Drew hires Shelby Gates an investigative reporter. He hires her under the guise of giving her the biggest story of her career. Shelby’s life has been altered and her heart broken by those who hurt his family and she needs answers just as bad as Drew does. The chemistry and tension between these two was fascinating. I knew Drew’s lies would come to back to haunt him but I hoped it wouldn’t cause him to lose the one woman to ever make it past his defenses. Shelby broke down his walls and made a place for herself in his heart. Would Drew be able to put his pride and misguided sense of duty to accept her? You’ll have to read to find out!

“And just like that, nothing else mattered. This was the story of a lifetime and she couldn’t let it pass.” 

If you love a good romantic suspense that will keep you on your toes, I very highly recommend you pick up this series. It more than lived up to my expectations and I can’t wait to read more of Lexi’s work. You can learn some of Mia Lawless-Taggart’s story in Lexi Blake’s Masters and Mercenaries series. Overall the Lawless novels were gripping. Lexi had me thinking I knew where the story was going only to completely blindside me with something different. This is a story I will definitely be revisiting. Maybe the second time through I can catch something I missed initially.

Sometimes things that seem coincidental are actually quiet well panned.

“I suppose we’re going to be seeing Carly and Bran while we’re in Dallas next week.”
She had one week to get comfortable around Drew. One week to figure out if she could actually sell this cover to his family.
“It would seem odd if I didn’t pay them a visit. Bran knows I have a meeting with Taggart scheduled. We’ll be in Dallas for two days. Dinner with Bran and Carly and Mia and Case has already been planned.”
“Exactly. And you don’t want to raise a bunch of questions. So I was thinking it might be smarter for me to get my own hotel room. I can lay low and they don’t have to know I’m in town.” She’d sat up for a good portion of the night doing two things: thinking about how much she’d wanted to kiss Drew Lawless and then freaking out about it because that was a bad idea. Beware of billionaires with six-pack abs. It was her new mantra. Yes, she’d signed the contract last night, but that didn’t mean she couldn’t reason with her new . . . boss . . . partner . . . whatever he was.
“I told Bran you’re coming with me.”
This was exactly what she’d worried about. “You told him? I thought I would have more time. How am I going to explain this to Carly? I think she’ll wonder why one of her closest friends didn’t mention she was dating her future brother-in-law.”
“I’ve already explained it. We wanted to make sure it was real before we went public. It’s that simple. We met in Los Angeles. I contacted you. We went on a few dates and we’ve been talking a lot. You’ve come out to Austin because we’re contemplating moving in together. This is a trial run,” he said calmly, as though he hadn’t upended her entire life. “Also, I asked Bran not to mention it to Carly because you would rather tell her yourself. It was a safe bet Bran wouldn’t ask too many questions, but Carly will want to know everything. It’s why we need to get our stories straight.”
She focused on the words that messed with her life. “Moving in together? You told them we’re thinking of moving in together?”
“How else was I supposed to explain it when all your belongings arrive here?”
“What?” She winced because the words had come out in a screech. “I’m having your things packed up as we speak. They’ll be here in a few days.”
“Why the hell would you do that?” How was she going to get everything back to LA?
Drew relaxed again as though he’d already gone over this argument in his mind and knew he would win. “I wanted you to be comfortable. This is going to be a full-time job, and not a quick one. I suspect we’ll have to keep up our ruse for at least six months. Potentially a year. Also, that apartment you were living in was incredibly dangerous. Did you know it was recently condemned? The movers told me about it when they explained they were charging me extra for how fast they had to move. It’s scheduled to be demolished in two weeks.”
“What?” She stared at him. He expected her to live with him for six months to a year? Somewhere in the back of her head she’d been thinking a week or two tops, and then she’d go back to LA and work from there. Her apartment building was shitty and she was fairly certain someone cooked meth in part of it, but it was all she could afford. And it was solidly built. There had been no hint that anyone was planning on building in her part of LA. Gentrification had not reared its upscale, hipster head yet, so that left her with one very manipulative bastard. “Tell me you did not buy my apartment building and schedule it for demolition in an attempt to leave me with nowhere to go.”
He managed to look almost angelic in the soft light of morning. “I have no idea what you’re talking about.” 


NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog int eh world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.

FACEBOOK / TWITTER / WEBSITE / AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Cover Reveal: PARTNERS IN CRIME by M. Andrews

Title: Partners In Crime 
Author: M. Andrews 
Release Date: To Be Announced 
Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Hank's life was spiraling out of control. Booze, women and drugs ruled his world. He was headed down a dangerous path when a knock on the door turned his world around for the better. Now four years later the only parties Hank goes to are tea parties with his daughter Colby. Colby saved Hank from slipping into the darkness forever. Just when Hank thinks he has his life back on track, another knock on the door threatens to turn his life upside down. 

It was just another job interview was what Nora Cunningham thought when she knocked on the Ross' door. A live in nanny job was just what she needed to get out of living in her parent's basement and get herself out of the funk she had been living in after finding her boyfriend in bed with one of her best friends. What she didn't expect was Hank Ross, her sexy new boss. He's sweet and charming and a devoted father, but he has a dark side that intrigues Nora. Soon she finds herself falling for her new boss. 

The chemistry between Hank and Nora is explosive, but can Hank get over his fears of falling back into his old womanizing ways and give Nora the home she has been searching for? Can Nora convince Hank that it is possible for him to be a one woman man?

M. Andrews resides in the suburbs of Seattle with her family. She is a self proclaimed cupcake hound and coffee addict, who loves to write dirty erotic books. M is the author of the Gambling on Love Series, Hot Hollywood Nights series and the Amazon best selling book Cupcake. 






Cover Reveal: DEAR BRIDGET, I WANT YOU by Penelope Ward & Vi Keeland

We are excited to bring you the next cover from New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Authors Penelope Ward & Vi Keeland.

DEAR BRIDGET, I WANT YOU is the next standalone Contemporary Romance Novel from this sensational duo releasing on September 18, 2017!

   

Model: Philip Van den Hoogenband – Chadwick Models Melbourne
Photographer: Brian Jamie
Cover designer: Letitia Hasser, RBA Designs
DEAR BRIDGET, I WANT YOU
(A standalone novel)
Release date 9/18/2017

A Contemporary Romance Novel

New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Authors
Penelope Ward & Vi Keeland

Dear Bridget,
I’m writing this letter because it’s highly doubtful I’ll ever garner the courage to say this to your face.
So, here goes.
We’re totally wrong for each other. You’re the proper single mum with a good head on your shoulders. I’m just the carefree British doctor passing through town and temporarily living in your converted garage until I head back to England.
But here’s the thing… for some bloody reason, I can’t stop thinking about you in very inappropriate ways.
I want you.
The only reason I’m even admitting all of this to you right now is because I don’t believe it’s one-sided. I notice your eyes when you look at me, too. And as crass as I appear when we’re joking around about sex, my attraction to you is not a joke.
So, what’s the purpose of this note? I guess it’s a reminder that we’re adults, that sex is healthy and natural, and that you can find me just through the door past the kitchen. More specifically, it’s to let you know that I’m leaving said door cracked open from now on in case you’d like to visit me in the middle of the night sometime.
No questions asked.
Think about it.
Or don’t.
Whatever you choose.
It’s doubtful I’ll even end up sliding this letter under your door anyway.
--Simon   
 

PURCHASE LINKS:
**No Amazon ebook preorder. Will go live on Amazon on release day.

 
Penelope Ward is a New York Times, USA Today, and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author of thirteen novels. With over a million books sold, her titles have placed on the New York Times Bestseller list fifteen times. She is the proud mother of a beautiful 12-year-old girl with autism (the inspiration for the character Callie in Gemini) and a 10-year-old boy. Penelope, her husband, and kids reside in Rhode Island.
Connect with Penelope Ward  

Author photo 
Vi Keeland is a #1 New York Times Bestselling author. With more than a million books sold, her titles have appeared in over fifty Bestseller lists and are currently translated in twelve languages. She resides in New York with her husband and their three children where she is living out her own happily ever after with the boy she met at age six