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Apr
4

Review + Short Story: Shadow Rites by Faith Hunter

Review + Short Story: Shadow Rites by Faith Hunter Shadow Rites Author: Faith Hunter Reviewer: B. Rating: A What I’m Talking About: Picking up a few weeks after the end of the previous story, Shadow Rites finds Jane and Co. at the center of yet another potentially fatal dilemma. Beginning with a magical attack on her house in the middle of the night by unknown witches, it starts with an adrenaline rush and maintains that frenetic pace throughout. Jane has changed over the course of the series, however, and, unlike the impersonal nature she once wrapped herself in so determinedly, there’s an undercurrent of affection in her now that makes her even more compelling. Far from the impulsive loner that she once was, Jane has learned many, many things since she first began working with the other supernatural elements that populate the series. Jane is a hero, in every sense of the word. While there’s nothing she wouldn’t do to save those she loves, in recent stories she often “runs the numbers” to gauge how much of herself she can sacrifice for them and live in order to do the same again in the future, should they have need. Just as important, however, is that Jane is no longer acting on her own, and those who love her are entitled to make sacrifices for her, in turn—a fact she’s still trying to accept. One of the most interesting aspects of these stories is that each is built around a specific happening or mystery, the components of which may at once fill in missing information from previous novels, while laying the ground work for events yet to come. Shadow Rites further expands on this template, the pieces of unsolved puzzles from earlier titles suddenly snapping into place, thereby reshaping Jane’s world to accommodate even more unknowns. It’s been an intriguing pattern so far. While the Jane Yellowrock series works perfectly well without an excess of romance coloring the narrative, the fact that Jane still has a mostly-steady love life in Shadow Rites was particularly delightful. The intimacy between Jane and Bruiser is a hard-won thing, and I think Ms. Hunter is spot on to limit these interactions to anticipation and the happily reflective afterglow that follows—at least until the next disaster has them both taking off at a sprint. Bruiser is too much the gentleman, and Jane too private, to justify anything sexually gratuitous. I think my favorite thing about this story is that, all this time, Jane has...
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Mar
2

Review + Excerpt: Dance of Desire by Christopher Rice

Review + Excerpt: Dance of Desire by Christopher Rice We are so excited to bring you the Review & Excerpt Tour for DANCE OF DESIRE by Christopher Rice! 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. It is due to be released on February 23, 2016! Grab your copy of this hot new novella today! Vampbard’s Review: I’ve been binge-reading Christopher Rice books. I’m not quite sure what it is about his voice that draws me in, makes me feel like I’m *right there*. Maybe it’s the first person, present tense storytelling. Doesn’t matter. Anything by Mr. Rice is an auto-buy now. Someone break the news to Mr. VampBard about the Amazon one-clicks. As offering number thirty-six of the 1001 Dark Nights project, Mr. Rice bring us Dance of Desire, his first contemporary romance. I think I really related to Amber. She has a low-life leech for a husband who she never really loved. Not in the way she’s loved Caleb since… forever. Loving someone you’re not supposed to can’t be easy. Especially an adopted sibling. What I really liked about her, however, is the fact that she was a fierce female, and didn’t get all wishy-washy about stuff. She stood her ground, and she looked out for herself. The first half-ish of the title surrounds another of Mr. Rice’s series, Desire Exchange—at least vague references to it. I’ve grown to love how empowered people are by the Desire Exchange service, which is at the core of the other series. Both men and women explore their sexuality in a safe manner. Their inhibitions are, *ahem*, suspended as they open themselves to their deepest desire. Well, Miss Amber had no need for the pricey service—because she already knew her heart’s desire, and it was Caleb. The question here is: What to do about it? If John Q. Public believes someone is your sibling, it’s pretty bad to be seen macking all over them in public. I’m sure, since Caleb was adopted and he shared Amber’s last name, people would go all Flowers in the Attic on them. Ultimately, there was an answer. A way to make everything right—even in the good ol’ state of Texas. Using Mr. Rice’s dry and sarcastic sense of humor (which I seriously LOVE), pretty awkward moments are handles with joviality. “…A guy who looks like you…well, it’s just not normal...
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Feb
9

Lucani Lovers Series by Stephanie Julian

Lucani Lovers Series by Stephanie Julian About the Series: When I dreamed up the idea for the Lucani Lovers, I started with the thought that I wanted to do a series about werewolves simply because they’ve always fascinated me. I also knew I wanted to set my stories in my Etruscan Magic world. I already had the mythology laid out for my Darkly Enchanted and Magical Seduction series. I just needed a few defining factors. My wolves weren’t cursed. Their ancestors were gifted their ability by the Moon Goddess to help them battle their enemies centuries ago. They later became a secret part of the Roman Legion, the special forces unit. My wolves still run their society on the basis of the Legion and they even have a king. They have mates but they’re not determined by fate. (Although the Goddess of Fate can be a bit of a bitch.) My wolves fall in love just like the rest of us. Although they tend to have a few more…issues than regular people. Their enemies, the Malandante, are evil. (Well, almost all of them.) They used to enslave the lucani. That didn’t exactly endear the Mal to the wolves. The “outside” world doesn’t know about the lucani and the Etruscans. And those that do are part of a very select group. And now you know. Welcome to the group! There are six books in the Lucani Lovers series and all are priced at 99 cents until Feb. 15. Kiss of Moonlight, Book 1 Plagued by nightmares. Stalked by kidnappers. Tamra McMillan needs a safe haven. When tattooed bad-ass Kyle Rossini steps into her life, the last thing she expects to find is a sanctuary from her demons in his arms. Etruscan werewolf Kyle is the king’s assassin with a killer’s instincts. The last thing he needs is a mate who could be placed in danger because of him. Until he meets the one woman who needs him more than he needs his solitude. Moonlight Ménage, Book 2 For years, Tira Belludi has longed to give herself to the two shifter men who hold her heart. But visions of death and fears for her sanity have forced her to keep her distance. Nic Rocca and Duke Ducati are brothers in every way but blood. They share a home, a job and had planned to share their life with Tira between them…until the night she saw their future and built a fortress around her heart. Now danger and...
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Dec
23

Review + Blog Tour: Part & Parcel by Abigail Roux

Review + Blog Tour: Part & Parcel by Abigail Roux Part & Parcel Author: Abigail Roux Reviewer: B. Rating: A What I’m Talking About: After months of concern over so many beloved characters, and successfully avoiding all of the spoilers I possibly could, I was very pleased to discover that Part & Parcel ended up being even more wonderful than I had anticipated. Nick O’Flaherty and Kelly Abbott have been favorites of mine for ages, and the introduction of the Sidewinder stories helped ease the distress that accompanied the ending of the Cut & Run series, which I have always loved tremendously. Kelly and Nick are absolutely perfect for each other, and, while I’ve always wanted them to be happy, there was never any doubt that their path would be a difficult one. Though it is told primarily from Nick and Kelly’s perspectives, Part & Parcel is inarguably an ensemble effort. All of the surviving members of Sidewinder (and Zane) share a good amount of screen time once their (literal) journey begins—a facet of the novel that was welcome after having just said goodbye to them after Crash & Burn earlier this year. Zane, in particular, even shares narrating duties, which proved to be a very effective way of making me feel like a participant in the narrative, not merely an observer. One of the things that makes Part & Parcel unique is the combination of flashbacks and shifting narrators, along with the humor and answering sweetness and melancholy inspired by Elias Sanchez’s missives, that make up the entirety of the story. The team’s memories and Eli’s own words comfortably fade back and forth from one to the other, effectively transforming the ghost of a man who’s haunted these characters since Cut & Run into a real person within Part & Parcel’s pages. The result is that the audience is able to get to know Elias Sanchez over the course of the team’s journey, just as Zane, who is the “outsider” of the group, does. Ms. Roux is notorious for torturing her characters, and she does an especially thorough job of it in Part & Parcel. Nick and Kelly have been together long enough at this point that the issues they haven’t dealt with yet become a serious problem over the course of the story. Every single one of these men have a lot of lingering darkness from their time in service, as well as many events that followed, but poor Nick is positively drowning in it. On the...
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Oct
30

Blog Tour + Review: Dead Ringer by Heidi Belleau & Sam Schooler

Blog Tour + Review: Dead Ringer by Heidi Belleau & Sam Schooler From the Authors: Hi, and welcome to the DEAD RINGER release tour! We’re Heidi Belleau and Sam Schooler, here with more DEAD RINGER B-roll footage and DVD extras than you can shake a stick at. Stay tuned for author commentary, posters and info about all of James Ringer’s movies, classic Hollywood factoids, and, of course, some sweet prizes! As part of our tour, we’re sharing the beautiful set of five movie posters that the amazingly talented Vivian Ng designed for us! We both love commissioning art for our books, and we knew that Vivian, who designed Heidi’s REAR ENTRANCE VIDEO series covers, had a style that was perfect for what we wanted. James Ringer is an enormous presence throughout DEAD RINGER, and we wanted to do our part to commemorate his—as Percy would describe it—“completely brilliant” filmography. So we asked Vivian to design a poster for each of James’s five movies, and wrote a synopsis for each one, too! We’re featuring all five movies in chronological order, one per post, so be sure to follow along with the rest of our tour to see the rest of the James Ringer filmography! And, as one of our tour grand prizes, you can win a postcard set of the five posters—be sure to leave a comment below! The Easy (1953) James Ringer’s last—and most stunning—role! Soft-shelled Blake Lawrence (Ringer) isn’t keeping up with the times. In a town full of folks willing to show any curious man that looking in the wrong place will get him a knife in his gut, he’s got too many morals to make it as a private eye . . . and his boss knows that. After he loses his job, he stumbles on the case of a lifetime—a young woman (Jackie DeGroot) squirreled out of her family fortune by her dastardly uncle (Christopher Muldoon). The girl is desperate to reclaim her father’s money . . . and her mother’s priceless jewels. There’s a big payday in it for Lawrence if he can track down the missing riches. But when getting them back means committing the ultimate sin, will he have the guts to find his glory? Thanks to our generous blog hosts, and thanks to you for hanging out with us! Be sure to check out our full list of tour stops so you can see the rest of our extras and snag yourself more chances to win our giveaway! Review: Brandon Ringer, the look-alike...
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Oct
26

Find Your Holiday Hero with Sourcebooks + #Giveaway

Find Your Holiday Hero with Sourcebooks + #Giveaway Sourcebooks Casablanca invites you to Find Your Holiday Hero with three new holiday themed books! Take this fun quiz to determine  which character is your holiday hero. Then keep reading for more about and a chance to enter to win these three awesome books. A Silver Wolf Christmas Author: Terry Spear Series: Silver Town Wolves, #5 Pubdate: October 6th, 2015 ISBN: 9781492609506 IT’S A SILVER TOWN CHRISTMAS, AND THE WOLVES ARE READY TO HOWL CJ Silver and his brothers have returned to Silver Town eager to reconnect with the pack. And with the she-wolf newcomers renovating the old Victorian Silver Town Hotel, it looks like the holidays are going to be very merry indeed. Laurel MacTire and her sisters are excited to be living in a wolf-run town, but they have another motive— to solve the fifty-year-old mystery of their aunt’s disappearance. When CJ gets a whiff of trouble brewing, his protective instincts kick in—now Laurel has a hotel opening to prepare for, a mystery to solve, and a brawny wolf shifter underfoot. Perhaps she should have resisted the temptation to kiss him so wickedly in the snow. About the Author: USA Today bestselling author Terry Spear has written over fifty paranormal and medieval Highland historical romances. In 2008 Heart of the Wolf was named a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. A retired officer of the U.S. Army Reserves, Terry also creates award-winning teddy bears that have found homes all over the world and is raising two Havanese puppies. She lives in Crawford, Texas. Buy Links: Amazon: http://amzn.to/1WitjKd Apple: http://apple.co/1KORNqP BAM: http://bit.ly/1LNSkWf Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/1gNEQ4j Chapters: http://bit.ly/1ORDtQ5 Kobo: http://bit.ly/1MIVPmR Indiebound: http://bit.ly/1R2JYy6 Come back later today to read B.’s review of A Silver Wolf Christmas. Cowboy Firefighter for Christmas Author: Kim Redford Series: Smokin’ Hot Cowboys, #1 Pubdate: October 6th, 2015 ISBN: 9781492621478 Warm up this Christmas with a sexy cowboy firefighter who knows how to ignite flames as well as put them out…  He’s hotter than a wildfire Trey Duval is a rancher, proud as can be of his Wildcat Ranch. He’s also the top volunteer firefighter of Wildcat Bluff, Texas, the town that pulls out all the stops for its Christmas festivities. City girl Misty Reynolds comes to Wildcat Bluff just in time to help Trey put out a suspicious fire, leading him to dub her his “Christmas angel.” Unfortunately, Misty’s past has left her with terrible memories of fire, and of Christmastime. As the two...
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Oct
24

Celebrating Riptide’s 4th Anniversary!

Celebrating Riptide’s 4th Anniversary! Today That’s What I’m Talking About is super excited to host a stop on the special blog tour celebrating the 4th Anniversary of Riptide Publishing. We’ve been working with Riptide for most of their 4 years and love reading their titles. Please help me welcome Rachel Haimowitz and Riptide Publishing… Thank you for joining Riptide on our 4th Anniversary blog tour! We are excited to bring you new guest posts from our authors and behind the scenes insights from Riptide. The full tour schedule can be found at OUR WEBSITE. Don’t miss the limited time discounts and Free Books for a Year giveaway at the end of this post! Please welcome Rachel Haimowitz to the tour. In bookish spaces, a powerful narrative has taken hold in the last year or so, helped along by LGBTQ rights battles and players like We Need Diverse Books: that diversity belongs in fiction. A message that sadly runs contrary to the vast majority of the titles ever published in the United States, particularly among mainstream houses. It was one of the reasons we started Riptide: too often, “LGBTQ fiction” really just meant “m/m,” and while m/m can be awesome and amazing and entertaining and sexy and important, it’s only one single shade of a vast rainbow. As an asexual (and also a Jew—another minority identity almost never reflected in, say, “holiday stories”), I was keenly aware of the lack of full representation in LGBTQ fiction, and I also spent a lot of time wishing I’d been able to find asexual representation in the books I’d read in high school and college. Because I spent a lot of time thinking there was something wrong with me, that I was broken, that my wires were crossed in some strange and unfixable way and that I’d never be able to make a partner happy because they wanted things that the whole world told me in multiple ways every single day were normal—and that I did not want. Representative fiction would’ve allowed me to see that I was normal. That I wasn’t broken. That how I felt and how I wanted (or didn’t want) was an actual orientation that had a name—and that I wasn’t alone. That I could be asexual and still be sexy. That I could be in a happy, fulfilled relationship whether my partner was ace or not. So fast-forward many years, and now I write LGBTQ fiction and also own a publishing company...
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Oct
19

Blog Tour + Review: Rain Shadow by L.A. Witt

Blog Tour + Review: Rain Shadow by L.A. Witt Welcome to the Riptide Publishing/L. A. Witt blog tour for Rain Shadow, the latest installment in the multi-author Bluewater Bay series! Rain Shadow Author: L.A. Witt Reviewer: B. Rating: A- What I’m Talking About: Divorced, bitter, and lonely in self-imposed exile in Bluewater Bay, Jeremy Rose has a lot on his mind. His job as bodyguard has become increasingly stressful, his client’s unraveling relationship with her girlfriend is a constant reminder of his own failed marriage, and he thinks his kids hate him. Finding a gorgeous man in his age group who is also averse to anything beyond a casual hookup or two is more than he dared hope for. But, that’s exactly what counselor Scott Fletcher is offering—which suits Jeremy just fine. After all, surely the very last thing he needs now is to fall in love. Right? Rain Shadow is the story of Jeremy Rose, a (fairly) recently divorced father of two teenagers who is the current bodyguard for the director of “Wolf’s Landing,” the fictional television series filming in Bluewater Bay. One of the better “late bloomer” stories I’ve read, it explores the painful difficulties Jeremy must face after he realizes, and stops denying that, he’s gay. Telling himself that being alone is what’s best for his children, who still live with their mother in LA, he has explored his sexuality through one-night stands and brief hookups, never letting anyone get too close. Scott Fletcher, a Marriage and Family counselor, is also determinedly single, having lost the man he loved many years before in a tragic accidental shooting. Since his partner was a policeman who was killed in the line of duty, Scott has sworn off dating men with dangerous jobs, thereby making Jeremy’s vocation a deal breaker. Their situation would be perfect if they weren’t lying to themselves about how much they’ve come to need one another. L.A. Witt is a familiar author to me by now, and I can’t think of anything she’s written that I haven’t liked. Rain Shadow is no exception. She addresses Jeremy and Scott’s situation without unintentional awkwardness or resorting to the use of cartoonishly earnest protagonists. Issues of denial, honesty, love in its many forms, and even the fact that sex still happens after the age of twenty-eight are all addressed with an understated frankness that made becoming invested in this story very easy to do. Scott and Jeremy’s tale can absolutely be taken as a statement, but not...
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Oct
19

Blog Tour: Dark Pursuit Anthology

Blog Tour: Dark Pursuit Anthology Today I welcome the authors of the Dark Pursuit Anthology. They are each here today to share with readers a bit about her contribution to the anthology and tell us what is her favorite snippet or line for her story.  Please help me welcome Jessica Jarman, Bronwyn Green, Paige Prince, and Kris Norris… Jessica Jarman Tempted to Death Blurb: Months ago, Tara Wilcox ran away from Luca Castell and Oliver Gordon. She’d fallen hard for the pair of hunters and feared their growing feelings for her. But what truly terrified her was the possibility that they’d discover what she really is. That she’s the very thing they hunted. Luca and Oliver are partners, in every sense of the word, and their lives are spent running toward danger. Falling for Tara was the biggest risk they’d ever taken, and her vanishing without a word gutted them. But, she’s back, desperate for their help in hunting a vicious para creature. Despite the risks—to their lives and their hearts—reigniting the love they’d had is simple. But nothing is simple when, faced with an impossible choice, Tara reveals her true nature. Now that Luca and Oliver know the truth, Tara has another choice to make—run again or trust that their love is strong enough to look beyond the monster she fears they’ll see. Favorite Snippet: “I would, you know?” Oliver said, lips tickling the sensitive skin of Luca’s neck. “Hmmm?” “I would hold on to any shred of hope I could if it were you. If you were taken away from me.” He kissed Luca’s pulse. “And I would hold on until I saw with my own eyes that I shouldn’t anymore.” “I know,” Luca murmured. “I’d do the same. For you.” He squeezed his eyes shut then added quietly, “And for her.” Bio: Jessica Jarman is an author, blogger and rather obsessive fangirl. Having grown up in Upper Michigan and currently living in Minnesota, she’s a Midwestern girl through and through. And wouldn’t have it any other way. When Jessica’s not working to get words on the page, she passes the time with her amazing husband and four children, attempting to be crafty (and failing miserably), squeeing uncontrollably over my favorite shows or curling up with a good book. Social Media Links: Website : Blog : Twitter : Facebook : Tumblr Bronwyn Green Rising Blood Blurb: Vampire hunter, Harper Yovanoff, is not happy. Ever since her former partner vanished, she’d been content to work alone. Unfortunately, her boss doesn’t...
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Sep
14

Blog Tour + Review: Base Instincts by Larissa Ione

Blog Tour + Review: Base Instincts by Larissa Ione From the author: Hi, everyone! I’m so excited to be on the Base Instincts blog tour. Raze and Slake’s story was a labor of love for me, and while theirs isn’t the first m/m story I’ve written, it’s a first for the Demonica/Lords of Deliverance series. If you’re curious about how it all started, be sure to enter the giveaway for a chance to win the first two books set in the Demonica/LOD universe (details below), and for more information, head on over to www.LarissaIone.com! That’s What I’m Taking About Review: Base Instincts Author: Larissa Ione Reviewer: Jen Twimom Rating: A- Damon Slake (aka Slake) never quite fit into his violent demon family, so he made a deal with a demonic law firm to escape his home. As a weapon specialist and bounty hunter, he successfully brings in any sort of prey his employer demands. His current assignment is to track down a demon named Fayle, and if he doesn’t bring her in ASAP, he’ll lose his soul to the law firm. Raze works for Underworld General and at a high-end demon club as a paramedic. As a Seminus demon, he must have sex with a female every day or die a painful death; however, Raze is only attracted to males. Luckily, when he reached sexual maturation, his parents found Fayle, a succubus, to help ease his needs, and the pair has been together for 30 years. While the couple does what is needed for each to survive, it’s cold and impersonal. Raze is beginning to realize just how lonely his arrangement has made him when he meets the mysterious Slake. Base Instincts is an exciting and entertaining novella set in Ms. Ione’s uber-sexy Demonica world. For those who know the series, you will delight in seeing several familiar characters who play relevant roles in Raze and Slake’s story. Although it is part of the Demonica series, the story is certainly standalone, although could be spoilerish if you aren’t up-to-date with the books. Raze and Slake share an intense and immediate attraction. Unfamiliar with the biological requirements of Seminus demons, Slake pushes Raze’s buttons, demanding a sexual response. Once Raze gives in to his lust for Slake, he must explain the need for Fayle to be part of their passion. I loved that Slake didn’t let his feelings for Raze diminish because of his job and connection to Fayle. Both are two lost souls searching for that missing piece,...
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