Simple Math of LEANING INTO THE FALL–Review, Interview and Giveaway!

Hi there! I’m so excited to share a review and giveaway for a new M/M romance from Lane Hayes. LEANING INTO THE FALL is the second book in her Leaning In series, and pairs an awkward computer genius with an older, discriminating vintner. I really enjoyed watching these guys get together.

Scroll down for an interview, excerpt and to enter to win a $25 GC.
About the book:
Nick Jorgensen is a quirky genius. He’s made a fortune in the competitive high tech field with his quick mind and attention to detail. He believes in hard work and trusting his gut. And he believes in karma. It’s the only thing that makes sense. People are difficult, but numbers never lie. In the disastrous wake of a broken engagement to an investor’s daughter, Nick is more certain than ever he isn’t relationship material.

Wes Conrad owns a thriving winery in Napa Valley. The relaxed atmosphere is a welcome departure from his former career as a high-rolling businessman. Wes’s laid-back nature is laced with a fierceness that appeals to Nick. In spite of his best intention to steer clear of complications, Nick can’t fight his growing attraction to the sexy older man who seems to understand him. Even the broken parts he doesn’t get himself. However, when Wes’s past collides with Nick’s present, both men will have to have to decide if they’re ready to lean into the ultimate fall.

Random fun bits from author Lane Hayes!

Leaning Into the Fall is book 2 in my new series set in San Francisco. This story belongs to Nick and Wes, the uptight genius and the laid-back businessman. Or the Silicon Valley entrepreneur and a Napa Valley winery owner, respectively. If you’ve read my short story, Leaning Into Love, you may remember Nick as Eric’s best friend. He’s a little brash and unpredictable, but ultimately he’s a very special guy with a very unique perspective on life.

And speaking of unique perspectives, here’s a quick Q&A with some exciting topics to give you a little insight about me. LOL! Enjoy!

1. On a scale of 1 to 10 how “cool” are you?
2…LOL. No, I’ll myself a 5. Depending upon whom you ask, the answer would vary. I’m not into trends but I try to stay informed. But I’ve given up keeping my “cool”-ness on point. I am who I am.

2. How long does it take you to get ready in the morning?
15 minutes tops! I can do it in 5 if necessary. ☺

3. What is the one thing you have always wanted to do?
Write a book. Done! Now I’d like to write 50 books and make a movie or ten out of them. Wouldn’t that be awesome?

4. What TV sitcom family would you be a member of?
I always wished I could be an honorary member of the Brady Bunch. *sigh

5. What store do you shop at the most?
Trader Joe’s! Gotta feed my peeps!

6. What is the most delightful word you can think of?
Serendipity.

7. What is your least favorite beverage?
Any carbonated drink. I’m not a fan of soda at all.

8. What is the first thing you notice about the opposite sex?
I notice how people carry themselves, regardless of whether they’re male or female. You can tell so much from the set of someone’s shoulders and whether they’re willing to make eye contact. And if they smile, they’ve generally made a good impression on me. ☺

9. What was your favorite book growing up?
Nancy Drew books. I’m a proud owner of the first sixty books of the series!

Thank you for having me on your blog today! Happy Reading!
Lane Hayes xo

How about a little taste?

Wes led me to a small room at the opposite end of the building filled with barrels. The temperature dipped at least ten degrees here and the strong scent of fermenting wine was offset by the smell of oak. I moved toward the round table in the middle and glanced up at the tower of barrels. Each was labeled and dated, but as far as I could tell, the order wasn’t chronological. I categorized and filed the numbers in my mind in an attempt to solve a mystery that probably wasn’t so mysterious after all.

“These are special reserve wines. The best of the best. Theoretically anyway,” Wes said, picking up the long-sleeved plaid shirt draped over one of the chairs at the table.

“What do the numbers mean?” I asked, running my fingers over the printed tag on the barrel.

“It’s an internal code that basically tells us exactly which vines yielded the harvest. Some have information about soil disruption or weather flux. Of course, once the wine is fermenting that information is no longer significant but—”

“Where are the dates on these labels? Isn’t timing everything in the wine business?”

“Some might argue timing is everything in every facet of life.” Wes regarded me curiously before pointing out the dates in the middle of the tag. “It’s all here. See?”

“I don’t understand your system,” I said, stuffing my hands in my back pocket and staring up at the barrels.

“It’s an internal system. You’re not meant to understand. It’s for us only. The same way you wouldn’t explain the science behind how an advanced operating system works to one of your clients. They might say they’re fascinated but they aren’t really interested in the details. Same goes for wine. People come to tour the winery every day. They want to know about grape varietals and blends and some even ask about topography, weather and the fermentation process. But the true science of wine making confounds them. At the end of the day, truth is in the bottle.”

In vino veritas.

Wes smiled as he pulled his shirt on. “’In wine, truth’,” he translated. “Different context, but yes… truth. Are you going to tell me why you’re here or do I have to break out a bottle of Pinot to get the real story?”

Wes’s wolfish grin spread slowly across his handsome face as he closed the distance between us. He tilted my chin with his forefinger and stared deep into my eyes as though he was trying to read my mind. Or devour me whole.

“You look like you want to eat me,” I said before I could stop myself.

“I do. I want to do lots of things to you. Is that why you’re here? You want me to eat you, Nicky?”

“You invited me.” My eyes drifted shut when he ran his fingers along my jaw then splayed his hand behind my head and tugged my hair.

“I did. I’m glad you came.”

“Well, we were in the middle of listing our all-time favorite bands or artists by decade. That’s not the kind of thing you can leave for a whole week. It’s important.”

“You’re right. What were we thinking?” He licked my bottom lip in a sensual line from one corner of my mouth to the other. “We’ll have to continue that discussion later. I want to do other things first.”

My Review:
Nick Jorgenson is a 30 y/o computer programmer, and CEO of a tech security firm he started out of college with his best-friend and once-boyfriend Eric. Eric is president of the company, and they are really doing great. The business is booming, and Nick’s on the edge of a breakthrough in his new cybersecurity algorithm. Personally, however, Nick’s a bit of a mess.

He’s quietly jealous of Eric’s happy-shiny marriage to one of their college buddies, and he’s disgruntled that his own engagement to the daughter of one of his financial backers fell through. He’s got ten cases of very expensive personalized wine in his office that he’s tried, unsuccessfully, to return to the Conrad Winery–where Nick had made his ill-fated proposal. The bottles were meant to be favors for the wedding that wasn’t, and Nick thinks they are bringing bad ju-ju to his creative process. Nick is a socially-awkward, borderline Asperger’s, superstitious man, who’s edge of brilliance is sometimes overshadowed by his inability to relate to “normal” humans. He knows and owns this, and yet it still gets him tearing off to Napa with his pristine Range Rover filled with pinot bottles.

Wes Conrad isn’t amused at his wine being returned for the fourth time. He’s not going to accept it back, re-label it, and re-sell it, no matter what nonsense the sexy younger man is spouting about “starting over with a clean slate.” When Nick’s car is wrecked and the bottles are a total loss, however, Wes does help him out with clean clothes, and well, a little bit of masculine affection.

Nick’s turned on and turned inside out by Wes’ tough loving. He’s never been with a man bigger, or stronger, than himself. And, he finds that he likes a little bit of rough play. Not that it’ll happen again. Except, they run into each other at a private benefit in San Francisco and it’s even better. So much so that Nick takes Wes’ invitation to visit the winery again to heart. And he does. They’re “friends with benefits” relationship seems to overtake Nick’s progress on his algorithm, and there’s a lot of paranoia building regarding competitors and their proximity to Nick, Wes and other players in their business. It turns out that Wes had a tech firm a decade before and one of Nick’s biggest competitors had made it a hard row to hoe–so much that Wes sold out and bought the winery with his best friend and former lover.

There is a whole lot going on in the book, but the center of it is always Nick and his struggles to be who he is. Wes is excellent at accepting Nick and his idiosyncrasies–even when Nick is intolerant of himself. Nick really struggles with balance; he’s impulsive and manic and all-in on things before he even knows what he’s agreed to. He has a dedicated set of friends, who care a great deal for him, and Wes is a patient and tender man, who guides Nick into seeing that he can have a good, satisfying life, if he just backs away from his blind ambition a little.

I didn’t read the first book in this series, but it wasn’t necessary to enjoy this one. There is a sweet collection of college friends, including Eric and Nick, who each seem to find the man of their dreams–so I expect that’s what’s going to happen going forward. I loved falling with Wes and Nick, and I look forward to watching the next romance unfold.

Interested? You can find LEANING INTO THE FALL on Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo.

****GIVEAWAY****

Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link for your chance to win a $25 Amazon GC.
Good luck and keep reading my friends!

About the Author:
Lane Hayes is grateful to finally be doing what she loves best. Writing full-time! It’s no secret Lane loves a good romance novel. An avid reader from an early age, she has always been drawn to well-told love story with beautifully written characters. These days she prefers the leading roles to both be men. Lane discovered the M/M genre a few years ago and was instantly hooked. Her debut novel was a 2013 Rainbow Award finalist and subsequent books have received Honorable Mentions, and were winners in the 2016 Rainbow Awards. She loves red wine, chocolate and travel (in no particular order). Lane lives in Southern California with her amazing husband in an almost empty nest.

Catch up with Lane on her website, Facebook, twitter, and Goodreads.

Getting Trapped in THE DEEP END–A Review

facebookdeependHi there! I’m sharing a review for a new erotic romance from best-selling author Kristen Ashley. THE DEEP END is the first book in her Honey series and has all the hotness and all the sweetness and all the sexytimes.

deepend_highresAbout the book:
Enter a decadent sensual world where gorgeous alpha males are committed to fulfilling a woman’s every desire…
Olivier isn’t sure what he’s gotten himself into when he joins the Honey Club, only that a dark part of him hungers for the lifestyle offered by this exclusive club. Here, no boundary will be left untested…and one’s deepest fantasies will become an exquisite reality.

When Amélie invites Olivier to surrender, she gives the alpha submissive what he craves. Soon they both find themselves falling harder than they ever anticipated—but as their connection deepens, the truth about Olivier’s past could destroy everything…

Gripping and seductive, The Deep End is the first book in a sensational new series from bestselling author Kristen Ashley.

How about a little taste?

She turned back to him. “You seem to have a good deal of stamina.”

“Amelie…Mistress, I don’t think you’re getting’ that I seriously find you not hard on the eyes.”

She bent closer, as intended for this part of their session, some of her fair falling on his chest in another caress. She did this letting her amusement show, if not all of the emotion she felt at his compliment.

“I wonder, mon chou, if you think you can butter me up with compliments.”

“I don’t know. Maybe. Though not sure why I’d bother since I didn’t give you one and you just made me shoot a huge-ass load the like that have never come from my cock.”

“And he gives another compliment,” she said through a smile.

“You earn it, I’ll say it, he replied, his lips twitching. “That is, if I’m physically capable of speech.”

She was still smiling when she reached out a hand and delicately traced circles around his nipple.

His eyes darkened.

Her good humor increased.

“You’re of course aware I should do something about you being so audaciously cheeky.”

Another darkness crossed his face. “What?”

“I shouldn’t allow you to be cheeky with me.”

“Cheeky?”

“Impudent,” she explained.

The look fled. “You mean, in uppity, hot-chick speak, a wise-ass.”

Amelie couldn’t help it, she laughed softly.

“She’s got a pretty laugh, too, to go with that pretty accent,” he murmured and she saw his eyes on her lips.

I could get lost in this one, she thought. Lost and never found.

My Review:
Amelie is a well-respected Domme searching for an alpha submissive to play with. She’s intrigued by the newest “toy” at the Honey Club, a big, brooding man called Olivier. One look and she knows she must have him–at least for one night.

So she takes him, and gives him exactly what he’s been searching for: a worthy Mistress to submit to. This book is all about finding your way, even when it’s not what you expect. Olivier has long believed his desire to be a submissive renders him weak, and he’s struggled to build any lasting relationships as a result; he just can’t articulate his needs. He got some advice from a good friend who owns a kink club, and sought out Mistress Amelie, recognizing that her reputation was absolutely deserved. Still, Olivier cut corners in order to get his membership the the Honey, and that he has minimal experience in BDSM and kink put him at risk for abuse. Amelie isn’t that kind of Domme, but she does make assumptions that Olivier can’t quite handle.

These two get on like a house on fire, when they aren’t burning themselves to ashes. Amelie wants a partner, and Olivier wants a partner, but neither can see that they need to talk it out more, because their chemistry is so in sync. It took me a while to warm to Amelie, and it wasn’t because she’s hard. She’s just a super thinker. Like, she thinks and thinks and considers and mulls, and rambles. Being in her head didn’t connect for me, at first. Not until she started to think about other people besides her own self, her desires and her needs. She seemed one-dimensional, for about the first third of the book, but then she really put her focus on Olivier, and her friends, and I could see through her veneer and recognize she’s just a self-isolating character. That she’d been hurt badly, and struggled to open herself up to further vulnerability, until she began falling for Olivier.

Olivier is conflicted throughout most of the book. He thinks he needs to conform to a hetero-normative, masculine ideal. His emotional needs are also complicated by his fear of being “less than” due to having less money than his dear Amelie. I liked how his father really set him straight. I also liked how Olivier owned his mistakes, and his hot-temper, and made amends for how he goes off at times. Their language and thought patterns are so different, which made being in their headspaces very interesting.

As for sexytimes, whoa. There are lots and they are intense. Amelie is a creative Mistress, and she know how to ring Olivier’s bell. Over and over and over again. Olivier is a fun guy to observe, as he’s so open and in your face, and so absolutely grateful to Amelie for wringing him inside out and sideways. While I felt it started slow, I was turning the pages double-time by the end. There’s some background shenanigans that cause distress later–with a rogue Domme harming her “toys”. Because Amelie steps in she becomes a target. I liked how all this played out, and how it set up a few jumping off points for new books in this series. I expect new books will feature new couples, and I’d be eager to follow their stories, too. Amelie and Olivier cement a complete HEA, and their kinky ways are sure to please fans of erotic or BDSM romance.

Interested? You can find THE DEEP END on Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks, GooglePlay, Kobo, IndieBound, and BAM.

kristen-ashley-headshotAbout the Author:
Kristen Ashley was born in Gary, Indiana, USA and nearly killed her mother and herself making it into the world, seeing as she had the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck (already attempting to accessorize and she hadn’t taken her first breath!). Her mother said they took Kristen away, put her Mom back in her room, her mother looked out the window, and Gary was on fire (Dr. King had been assassinated four days before). Kristen’s Mom remembered thinking it was the end of the world. Quite the dramatic beginning.

Nothing’s changed.

Kristen grew up in Brownsburg, Indiana and has lived in Denver, Colorado and the West Country of England. Thus, she’s blessed to have friends and family around the globe. Her family was (is) loopy (to say the least) but loopy is good when you want to write. They all lived together on a very small farm in a small farm town in the heartland. She grew up with Glenn Miller, The Everly Brothers, REO Speedwagon and Whitesnake (and the wardrobes that matched).

Needless to say, growing up in a house full of music, clothes and love was a good way to grow up.

And as she keeps growing, it keeps getting better. Catch up with Kristen on her website, Facebook, twitter, sign up for her newsletter, Goodreads, Pinterest, Instagram.

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Finding Love and WANDERLUST–A Review

Hi there! I’m sharing a review for a contemporary romance from Daisy Prescott. WANDERLUST is a romantic comedy that spans three continents, but it’s previous title, Missionary Position, had some…difficulites. It kept getting mixed in with books about Mother Teresa. Or, more erotica-type books. And this book is neither. It’s a sweet and snarky romance and kept me entertained.

wanderlust-amazonAbout the book:
“A captivating story about life, love, and an exciting and unintentional quest for self-discovery.”
Selah Elmore is a confident, curvy woman who knows exactly who she is and what she wants. Her less-than-stellar love life is another story. Hoping for a fresh start, she leaves her home and job in the Pacific Northwest to spend six months in West Africa.

After accepting an offer from a stranger in an airport bar, Selah’s real adventure begins during a stopover in Amsterdam. Will the daring, mysterious Kai show her what love really is?

Sparks fly on three continents when perpetually single Selah discovers there’s more to love and life than she ever imagined.

Wanderlust is book three in the Modern Love Stories series. It’s a spin-off/standalone from Geoducks Are for Lovers.

#1 Top Rated Book in Humorous Women’s Fiction
Top 20 Humorous Women’s Fiction Best Seller
Romantic Comedy Best Seller

My Review:
Dr. Selah Elmore studies depictions of the female form in tribal art. She has a 6-month sabbatical planned in Ghana to study fertility relics in the local museum, and on the way she’s going to the Netherlands for an exhibit opening and auction of more relics–which helps support her research.

While eating sushi ate JFK airport, Selah meets Anita, a beautiful Dutch woman, and they hit it off. Anita insists that Selah look up her brother, Gerhard, when she arrives in the Netherlands, and Selah’s a sex-positive 40ish woman, so she decides to do exactly that. Gerhard turns out to be aligned with the sponsors of the exhibit Selah went to view, and they strike up an acquaintance that sparkles with possibility, but Selah doesn’t push for more–to her chagrin. Still, Gerhard’s contacts span the time after she leaves for Ghana, and Selah relishes every one of those texts.

Getting settled in Ghana isn’t difficult; Selah makes friends easily, but she keeps everyone at surface level–including Gerhard. Well, at least until Gerhard pops in unexpectedly, with a plan to join Selah while he works on some of his micro-financing plans in Africa. There are a lot fo misconceptions/misunderstandings they need to work through, but the super-hot monkey sex Selah had craved back in Europe is now on the table (and the bed and wherever they land) in Ghana.

This is a longer-style romance, as Gerhard and Selah have a few months of time to spend exploring each other, Ghana, and the possibility for a real relationship. Selah is not accustomed to being wanted for more than a fling, and is apprehensive about being hurt by Gerhard–though I didn’t quite get why. She makes a pretty quick jump overboard when Gerhard seems to be willing to make things more permanent–and it’s always Gerhard that’s the pursuer, here. I really liked him, and Selah was funny, but narrow-minded. The end is really sweet, with Gerhard winning her back spectacularly. I totally enjoyed the setting descriptions, and often felt like I was on safari in these exotic (to me) locales.

Interested? You can find WANDERLUST (previously titled Missionary Position) on Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, and Kobo.

new daisy prescott full sizeAbout the Author:
USA Today Bestselling author Daisy Prescott lives in a real life Stars Hollow in the Boston suburbs with her husband and an indeterminate number of imaginary housegoats. When not writing about people falling in love, she can be found traveling, gardening, baking, and reading a good book. Her novels include the Modern Love Stories series, the Wingmen series, and several short stories. She’s also working on expanding the world of Bewitched this fall.

Catch up with Daisy on her website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Amazon, or sign up for her Newsletter.

Thanks for popping in and keep reading my friends!

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Connections and Deceptions: FIRESTORM–Review & Giveaway!

Hi there! Today I’m excited to share an excerpt, review and giveaway for a new paranormal romance from best-selling author Donna Grant. FIRESTORM is the tenth book in her Dark Kings dragon shifter romance series, and features a solitary dragon falling for the archeologist who lovingly uncovers the skeleton of one of his lost comrades. Though this book is part of a larger series, it mainly features the love story of this couple. I’ve read book nine, SMOKE AND FIRE, and liked it enough to read on in the series.

Be sure to enter the giveaway below for your chance to win a signed copy of DRAGON FEVER, or an ebook.
About the book:
SCORCHED BY DESIRE
Dimitri lives to protect the secret of the Dragon Kings from the human race. Bound by a bond stronger than blood to the Kings, Dimitri uses his strength and prowess to defend a thousand-year-old secret. But when an oh-so-sexy, slightly absent-minded archaeologist wanders into his midst, Dimitri will have to give up his rules, and give in to desire…

When Dr. Faith Reynolds stumbles upon an ancient skeleton that appears it comes from a dragon, she’s completely taken aback. A woman of science, there’s no way in her mind that this mythological creature can exist. But when a devilishly handsome man named Dimitri intercepts her path to uncovering the truth, Faith’s curiosity turns into all-consuming passion. She’s never felt this way about any man before. But when Dimitri reveals his biggest secret, can she learn to love the man—as well as the dragon within?

How about a little taste?

Dmitri still hadn’t decided about Faith Reynolds. Her dedication to her job was unquestioned. He wasn’t accepting her answer of just finding the cave, though.

To have chosen this cave above any others? This one, which happened to have a dragon skeleton inside?

While he’d walked the site after meeting Dr. Reynolds, he overheard conversations. Many of the volunteers didn’t believe it was a dragon. They suspected it was a new species of dinosaur. The few locals he saw milling about were curious, wondering how the new find would help tourism.

He spotted a few “crazies” as Tamir called them, watching from a distance, but no one got close. Though he was curious about the two men Tamir had encountered earlier.

The way Tamir had acted as he spoke about the incident made Dmitri wonder if word hadn’t somehow reached the Dark Fae.

Or Ulrik.

Once volunteers began leaving for the night, Dmitri found himself climbing back down to the cave. He’d expected to find Faith shutting things down for the day, but she continued to work.

He didn’t want to be intrigued by her, but he was. If only his fascination had to do with how she’d found the dragon. He would discover what had led her to the skeleton, but that wasn’t what kept his gaze locked on her.

It’s not what kept his body strung tight as a bow.

She was average height, but there was nothing typical about her looks. Much to his dismay. His tastes ran toward the Fae since he preferred to stay away from humans. Yet, there was no negating the fact that lust burned through his body from the first moment her sherry eyes locked with his.

There was a . . . simplicity about Faith that he appreciated. No makeup was needed to enhance her natural beauty. At first glance, she seemed almost ditzy since her mind ran a million miles a second, but her intelligence and zest for life were apparent with one look.

Her sandy blond hair hung straight and glossy to her shoulders and was parted to one side with long bangs that she swiped out of her eyes repeatedly. The locks tantalized him by exposing the slender column of her neck and the delicate skin behind her ear.

Unblemished fair skin beckoned him to touch, to caress.

To lick.

He clenched his teeth at the need that surged through him. When she turned, he watched the pulse at her throat and fought the longing to press his lips against it to feel the warmth of her body.

Her oval face held a look of innocence and excitement he hadn’t seen in a long time. While her high cheekbones and sensual mouth added to her beauty, it was her eyes that caught him. They looked at the world as if it were a large sandbox waiting to expose its treasures.

His palm still prickled from their brief touch earlier. The shock that had gone through him had been electric. The charge surged through him faster than lightning and left him reeling—and aching for more.

Unable to look away, he watched as she stood and then bent over at the waist. The sight of her firm ass high in the air had the blood rushing to his cock. No mortal had ever had such an effect on him before. It unsettled him—and angered him.

He forced his eyes away and turned his mind to more pressing matters. He’d been sent because of the skeleton, but there was something about Faith that didn’t seem to add up.

The most important question: how had she known where to look to find the bones?

Faith became so engrossed in her work that she didn’t hear others talking to her. Even when Tamir called her name, she was often too preoccupied with digging up the skeleton.

Dmitri had watched her for hours. In that time, he’d listened to her hum and watched her touch the bones with such reverence that it shook him.

Though he’d come to the cave to watch her, it gave him time with the skeleton, as well. By the size, he knew it was an adult. Which of his dragons had gotten left behind? They’d been his responsibility, and he’d failed.

The longer he stared, the more he felt the weight of regret. The world had been created for the dragons. It was their birthright, their home.

Yet they were no longer welcome.

And he feared nothing would ever change that.

The Dragon Kings who found mates with human females were lucky. Those mortals welcomed the dragons and the Kings. But most of the globe was made up of individuals who wanted nothing more than to destroy the Dragon Kings, imprison them, or run tests on them.

So he and the others remained hidden.

But the dragon inside him—the fierce, savage creature that he was—silently cried out for revenge. And his family.

My Review:
Dr. Faith Reynolds, an archeologist working a Fair Isle dig, has discovered a new world–in the form of a dragon skeleton. She’s sure this is a bona fide discovery, but most of her crew is skeptical, thinking it’s likely a new species of dinosaur. Dmitri, Dragon King of the Whites, knows this “find” is one of his family, somehow left behind and hidden eons ago after he’d ushered all the rest of his dragons through the portal that removed them from Earth and the humans that were constantly attacking.

Dmitri has never forgotten the anguish of sending his family on, and never bedded a mortal human in all these years. Still, he’s struck by Faith, and her quiet, studious ways. She wants to uncover the truth of her find, and that gets to the heart of Dmitri in ways he hadn’t expected. Dark Fae are about, messing and meddling with the humans, leaving two dead over the course of several storms that slow Faith’s pace on the site–but gives Dmitri and Faith time to bond–especially once Faith is attacked by the Dark Fae and Dmitri is compelled to rescue her.

I liked how they built a rapport of mutual esteem before it got physical, and I liked how Faith was willing to accept the truth of Dmitri’s heritage, too. It was interesting how the falling in love part happened quick, and there was time for more dangerous complications once Dmitri and friends got the skeleton back to Dreagan. For readers of the series, there is a lot of good stuff happening with previous couples, and naturally, Ulrik–the banished dragon who’s been stirring up lots of conflict–is back for more. As we near the end of this series, the conflict between Constantine and Ulrik seems to creep ever-nearer. This time, however, there were serious mind games happening, which made all the convictions to stay hidden and live secretly within human society seem foolish–and I liked that serious introspection. I also liked getting more of the backstory behind Con and Ulrik and what tore the rift between them. I’m anxious to see if Constantine finds a human to love, which I anticipate will be a big part of the end of this series. For readers new to the books, I felt the catch up in backstory was adequate for all this to make sense, more so that when I read SMOKE AND FIRE, so I’d recommend it to anyone who thinks dragon shifters are hot–and want to watch one fall for a studious and conscientious woman.

Interested? You can find FIRESTORM on Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, BAM, IndieBound, iBooks, Kobo, Audible, and Tantor Audio. I received a review copy of this book via NetGalley.

****GIVEAWAY****

Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link to enter for your chance to win a signed copy of DRAGON FEVER, or an ebook.
Good luck and keep reading my friends!

donna_grant_newAbout the Author:
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Donna Grant has been praised for her “totally addictive” and “unique and sensual” stories. Her latest acclaimed series, Dark Kings, features a thrilling combination of dragons, Fae, and immortal Highlanders who are dark, dangerous, and irresistible. She lives with her two children and an assortment of animals in Texas.

Catch up with Donna on her website, Facebook, twitter, Goodreads, Pinterest, Tumblr, Audible, and Tantor.
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RIDE HARD To Escape–Review and Giveaway!

Hi there! I’m excited to share a review and giveaway in support of a contemporary biker-romance series from bestselling author Laura Kaye. RIDE HARD is the first book in the Raven Riders spin-off from her Hard Ink series. The sequel comes out next month, so I’m glad I had a chance to read this love story between the MC president and the destitute woman he rescues.

Check out the excerpt and be sure to enter the giveaway for one of THREE $10 GC to Amazon or Barnes & Noble (winner’s choice!) below.

RIDE HARD - coverAbout the book:
Brotherhood. Club. Family.
They live and ride by their own rules.
These are the Raven Riders…

Raven Riders Motorcycle Club President Dare Kenyon rides hard and values loyalty above all else. He’ll do anything to protect the brotherhood of bikers—the only family he’s got—as well as those who can’t defend themselves. So when mistrustful Haven Randall lands on the club’s doorstep scared that she’s being hunted, Dare takes her in, swears to keep her safe, and pushes to learn the secrets overshadowing her pretty smile.

Haven fled from years of abuse at the hands of her criminal father and is suspicious of any man’s promises, including those of the darkly sexy and overwhelmingly intense Ravens’ leader. But as the powerful attraction between them flares to life, Dare pushes her boundaries and tempts her to want things she never thought she could.

The past never dies without a fight, but Dare Kenyon’s never backed down before…

How about a little taste?

“So much better out here,” Haven said, the night air cool against the tingling warmth of her skin. Although she was pretty sure that not all of the heat burning through her insides was from the alcohol—her unusual flirtatiousness and closeness to Dare over the past half hour had made her desperate with a heat that had nothing to do with her drinking game.

She walked to the railing and leaned against it, chuckling a little at herself for needing the support it offered. She felt so damn free, and it was a heady, exhilarating thing.

“What’s funny?” Dare asked, settling a hip against the railing right beside her. Arms crossed, jaw ticking with tension, dark eyes blazing, he was staring at her like he wanted to reprimand her or devour her. Oddly, neither alarmed her the way she would’ve expected it to.

Haven shook her head, leaning it back and letting her gaze float over the night sky. Blurry points of light swam in the moonlit heavens. It was beautiful and peaceful despite the pounding bass beat of music thumping from inside the clubhouse. “Not funny, just good. Happy, you know? Being able to do something a little . . . scary, but knowing I’d be safe doing it.” When Dare’s gaze narrowed, she shrugged. “I don’t know.”

A long moment passed before Dare finally spoke. “You are safe here, Haven. Never doubt it.”

Peering up at him, she nodded, all kinds of words sitting on the tip of her tongue, challenging her to let them fly. “It’s weird feeling safe—or at least safer—after a lifetime of not. It makes me want to try things I could never let myself try before. It makes me . . .” She shook her head and dipped her chin.

Dare stepped closer, his thighs coming up against her hip. He lifted her chin and made her look at him. The contact combined with the command in the gesture lanced white-hot desire through her veins. “Makes you what?”

“Want to feel alive,” she whispered, her heart suddenly racing in her chest.

Dare’s jaw ticked again as his gaze swept over her face. She didn’t think she was imagining the raw emotion pouring off of him and wrapping around her, but she wasn’t sure if she was reading that emotion right or projecting her own desire onto him.

“Do you feel alive, Dare?” she asked, the alcohol flowing through her and the night spinning around her like she was walking through a dream.

“Jesus,” he bit out.

The rough desperation in his voice made her wet between her legs. “Just once,” she whispered, not sure what she was asking him for.

But he seemed to know. Because his hand was suddenly tangled in her hair and his mouth was suddenly on hers, claiming, probing, tasting.

Haven moaned and parted her lips, inviting him deeper.

Dare jerked back from her, his fingers rubbing roughly over his lips. “Fuck, I’m sorry.”

On instinct, Haven’s body pursued his, pinning his back to the railing. “Please don’t stop,” she said as her hands gripped his shoulders. She had the strongest urge to climb him, to wrap her legs around him, to grind against the hard bulge pressing electrically against her belly.

“Please,” she whispered, tilting her mouth toward his. “I liked it.”

Dare’s hand cupped the back of her head. “You’re killing me.”

“Dare,” she said, her body restless against his.

In a move that sent the world spinning, he flipped them around so that she was the one pinned against the railing. He pushed his legs between hers and leaned down over her, forcing her to arch her back, to yield, to open to him. “Tell me what you want from me. Say the words,” he said, his eyes absolutely on fire.

Her heart was a runaway train in her chest, frantic and picking up speed. The thought of giving voice to her desires was terrifying and thrilling and dizzying all at once.

“I want your mouth,” she said. The words sounded odder out loud than they had in her head, but they were more accurate than asking him to kiss her—because her mouth wasn’t the only place she wanted his.

“Jesus,” he rasped again, his mouth coming down on hers once more.

The whimper she released was part relief, part anticipation. It had been so long since she’d kissed someone that she felt a little uncertain, but Dare’s intensity barely allowed her the capacity to worry about it. He was like a dark storm bearing down on her, relentless, magnetic, all-consuming.

Rough callouses from his hands scratched against her cheeks as he guided her. Hard breaths spilled over her lips, and the wet slide of his tongue tasted like whiskey and desire and man. Her hands found the soft length of his hair, and her breasts pushed against the hard plane of his chest.

Then her lips were freed as his mouth slid over her skin—exploring her cheek, her jaw, her ear, her neck. He hiked her up to sit on the wide railing, the move surprising a gasp out of her, especially as he crowded the space between her legs, pushing himself closer, bringing his erection against the place between her legs craving friction, hardness, so much more of him. Maybe even all of him.

One strong arm wrapped around her back and held her steady, while the other hand stroked her hair, her face, her breast. The soft groans and breathy grunts spilling out of him were delicious and thrilling, and bolstered her confidence that she wasn’t the only one losing herself in this moment, in these touches. She almost couldn’t believe this was happening, and part of her was certain she must be dreaming. Because Haven Randall didn’t have beautiful things in her life. At least, never before.

 My Review:

Haven is a woman on the run from her controlling, abusive crime lord of a father. She’s been sheltered since her early teens, has a crippling sense of shyness and got mixed up with the Raven Riders motorcycle club by accident. Haven and her childhood best friend Cora were trying to escape their fathers–Cora’s dad works for Haven’s–when they were picked up by the Church Gang.

Books in the Hard Ink series detail the Church Gang’s involvement in a plot to kill a bunch of dishonorably discharged Special Ops veterans, and how the good men of the Raven Riders assisted those heroes. When they took out the Church Gang, Haven and Cora were freed–but they had no where to go, so they are living in the Raven Riders clubhouse/compound. It’s hard for Haven, due to her shyness, but she’s beginning to make more friends, including Raven Riders president, Dare Kenyon.

Dare has made sure his MC is nothing like the criminal organization his murdering father ran back in Arizona. They act as a family, and help people in need. People like Haven and Cora. Haven’s so different from the usual gals Dare finds comfort with, and that’s cool–he’s not going to push her too much. However, they do find friendship, and later companionship. Dare’s able to discuss his childhood tragedies, while Haven reveals her abuse, and they bond. It’s a bit more tender than I’d expected, honestly.

Ultimately, there’s a bounty on the return of Haven and Cora, and Haven’s father isn’t willing to let her go–under any circumstances. It’s a bloody business that involves a fair amount of collateral damage once daddy comes a-knocking, but Haven draws on her newfound strength to protect herself and the people she loves against the man who has ruined her life to this point. The end is an HEA, but I found it muted due to the sorrow over those lost in the fray. That said, it’s a good read. This is the first of a spin-off series, so we get a lot more detail of the Raven Riders than we had in the Hard Ink books, to set up future stories, no doubt–and also some cameos from the Hard Ink boys, too.

Interested? You can find RIDE HARD on Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks, and Kobo.

Get a Bonus Short Story for Pre-Ordering Ride Rough, Coming 4/25/17!

Order a signed Ride Rough through the Virtual Signing!

And don’t miss all the books in the Raven Riders Series!
HARD AS STEEL now available
RIDE HARD now available
RIDE ROUGH coming April 25th, 2017
RIDE WILD coming October 31st, 2017

***GIVEAWAY****

Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link for your chance to win one of THREE $10 GC to Amazon or Barnes & Noble (winner’s choice!)
Good luck and keep reading my friends!

LauraKayeAbout the Author:

Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over twenty books in contemporary and paranormal romance and romantic suspense, including the Hard Ink and upcoming Raven Riders series. 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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Love on the Run: FOR HIS EYES ONLY–A Review

fheo-available-nowHi there! Today I’m sharing a review for a new romantic suspense novel from Lexi Blake. FOR HIS EYES ONLY pairs two former lovers on a wild ride to reconnection–and against some rather determined assassins. Hayley never would have sought out Nick again, until her life depended on him….

forhiseyesonly_highresAbout the book:
A night he can’t forget
Five years ago, Nick Markovic found himself consumed by his quest for vengeance. The one time he managed to find peace was in the arms of Hayley Dalton. Being with her was like bathing in sunlight, and he ached to feel that again, but he couldn’t. He gave his oath to Hayley’s cousin Desiree, his partner at McKay-Taggart and Knight, that he’d never let his darkness infect Hayley’s innocent world.

A spark she can’t put out
It was years before that Hayley offered everything she had to Nick. After that one amazing night, all she wanted was to be his forever. Unfortunately, Nick’s reaction was to walk away from her and never look back. The warm and caring man she’d discovered was gone, and after Des’s death, he’d only grown colder. But when Hayley finds herself in mortal danger, she’s forced to seek protection from the man who broke her heart.

A flame that threatens to consume them both
Haunted by the women he failed, Nick can’t allow himself to grow close to Hayley again. Running to stay ahead of the powerful forces that endanger their lives, they travel from the lush Garden in London to the glittering lights of Rio. As the threat against her becomes clearer, he realizes that to keep her safe he must confront the demons from his past, even if it costs him a future with the woman he loves.

How about a little taste?

Nick went back to staring at the report. “Hayley’s not mine. She was Desiree’s cousin. Now she’s my client.”

Who had been tired the night before and that was why she’d said the things she’d said. This morning she’d seemed much more sensible. After she’d had some sleep and a shower and had straightened herself up, she’d been quiet and seemingly reflective. She was very likely embarrassed by what had been said the night before.

I would get safety from murderers and I would get orgasms. I’m sorry, Nicky, you’re going to tell me how that’s a bad deal for me.

He was going to make sure she understood that his protection wasn’t based on whether or not she slept with him.

Because he wasn’t sleeping with her. He couldn’t hurt her that way again.

“So she was your old lover’s cousin,” Owen mused. “The lover you weren’t exclusive with and who wouldn’t marry you. The pretty girl who looks at you like you’re the sun in the sky is her cousin.”

“She looks at me like she would look at man who can save her.”

“I can save her.” Owen’s eyes lit up, his brows waggling. “Maybe she’ll look at me like that.”

Anger flared through his system. “Don’t you dare. I told you I would take care of her.”

His arms crossed over his big chest and Nick knew he’d been had. “Well, that answers the question with more honesty. You can pretend, but you like the girl. And if you honestly don’t then you need to know that the boys got a good look at her last night. If she’s going to be hanging about, she should be ready for some serious male attention.”

“What are you talking about?”

“The lads talked it over last night and decided there’s no dibs on this one. They all saw her at pretty much the same time. They looked over that dead body and saw her walking in the hall and that was when the fighting started. We all sat down and decided no dibs on her. She’ll get to pick. You should know that Sasha and Jax have decided if she picks either of them, they’re willing to share. I don’t play that way. That’s something I do know about meself. No need for you to be telling me that tale. If there’s going to be some sharing in the bedroom, it’s going to be the traditional kind between a man and a woman and her stacked best friend. That’s what I say.”

“You tell those boys to stay away from her or they will be dealing with me. They will not like to be dealing with me. I will put up with many things from them. They can poke all the corpses they like. They can punch each other. I do not care. They touch Hayley and I will be caring.”

“Wow, now you do sound Russian. A scary Russian. Still, I think if you don’t want the girl, shouldn’t she be allowed to choose? Think about it. It could be fun.”

“Are we talking about the lost boys and their battle for the new chick?” Kayla strode in, her hair in a high ponytail. It bounced as she walked, a testament to her seemingly ever-sunny personality. “I had babysitting duty last night and they kept talking about her even after lights out. Bad boys. I had a plan though. I think we make them compete in a beauty pageant. Hayley gets to judge.”

“I’m judging a beauty pageant?” Hayley followed behind Kay, and both women were followed by Charlotte Taggart and Penelope Knight. It looked like Hayley was rapidly being accepted by the women on his team.

That was not necessarily a good thing. The women on his team could create chaos like no others.

“That sounds like fun,” Charlotte said with a smile. “I think we should require Speedos for the bathing suit competition. No boring board shorts. If Hayley’s picking a lover, she needs to see some booty.”

Hayley stopped, her cheeks going the sweetest color of pink. “Wait. What?”

Penelope put a hand on her arm. “They’re teasing you, dear. Don’t worry about it. The lads will be very polite. Though you should expect some suitors while you’re here. Especially if you come down to the dungeon.”

Now he was the one flushing. “Excuse me?”

Hayley shook her head as she joined him at the table. “It’s nothing. I was just talking to the girls. Did you get the report? Penny said the Dallas office had found something.”

He was all too aware that they weren’t alone. Damon and Ian walked in with Brody Carter and Walter Bennett. The four men settled into chairs as the women joined them. Nick held out a chair for Hayley. He would have to remember that he couldn’t leave her alone for a minute or someone would be whispering in her ear, giving her ideas she shouldn’t have.

Like visiting The Garden on a play night.

It wasn’t happening.

My Review:
Hayley fell for Nicolai years and years ago, when he was the boyfriend her posh and mysterious cousin Desiree would drag to family gatherings. They were only a few years apart in age, but worlds apart in terms of experience. Nick had been Russian intelligence officer who got on the wrong side of the government and nearly died. His sister was murdered, and his quest for revenge cost him Hayley–for five years. They’d shared one night together, planned a new and bright future, but Des had wormed her way back in–and neither Hayley nor Nick has been the same since.

Hayley wouldn’t seek out Nick unless her life depended upon it. And, now it does. Her home in Seattle has been blown up, and the police who should have been protecting her seemed to be looking to remove her, permanently, from their problems list. All of this shortly after she’d received the effects of Des’ Tokyo apartment–bequeathed following Des’ funeral. On the run, and with no one else to help, she flees to London to find Nick–who works for a security company and is a part-time spy. Like Des was.

Hayley isn’t excited about staying in Nick’s apartment–which happens to be in the same building complex that houses his office and The Garden, an exclusive BDSM kink club, but she decides she has no choice when she’s almost killed en route to a hotel. Who is behind the attempts on her life? And, why? It must be linked to the letters Des left behind, right?

Well, Des left a mess, and may have been planning it to reunite Nick and Hayley, but their path back to togetherness isn’t so easy. This is the 13th book in a series, and all of them involve some combination of suspense and kink, though this one seemed higher on the suspense and lower on the love. Nick has lots and LOTS of memories of Des–which got in the way of building the romance here for me. Hayley is dead set against learning anything about Nick’s kink–because she hates thinking about him with anyone else, though she eventually caves on that because she wants Nick back. They are on the run for a good bit, but get things back on track traveling to Brazil to exorcise the ghost of Des from their lives–and it all goes south again…

I think the book ran a bit long, and the chemistry wasn’t as deep as I’d have wished/expected given the high stakes of the suspense plot. That said, readers who’ve followed the series have lots to enjoy, as there’s a wide and varied cast with so many characters to catch up with, or whet the appetites for further stories. I think the end was fine, an HEA that seemed believable, if a bit drawn out.

Interested? You can find FOR HIS EYES ONLY on Goodreads, Amazon (US and UK) Barnes & Noble, iBooks and Google Play.

lexi_blakeAbout the Author:
NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog in the 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.

Catch up with Lexi on her website, Facebook, twitter, and Amazon.
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Together the MISFITS are Love–Retro Review & Giveaway!

misfits-bannerHi there! Today I’m sharing a “retro” review and giveaway for a menage M/M/M romance from Garrett Leigh. I’ve really loved WHAT REMAINS and RENTED HEART, but the first book I ever read by Ms. Leigh was MISFITS. I honestly hadn’t read many M/M/M menage love stories, to that point, and I found it sweet and charming. A recent re-read confirmed my initial impression.

Catch my review and enter a book giveaway below.

misfitsAbout the book:
LAMBDA FINALIST 2015

Restaurant owner Tom Fearnes has loved his partner Cass for as long as he can remember, but their work often keeps them apart. When he meets a striking young man named Jake on the vibrant streets of Camden Town, their heady first encounter takes an unexpected turn.

Jake Thompson can hardly believe his luck when he wakes up in Tom’s bed. Tom is gorgeous, kind, and . . . taken. Tom’s explanation of his open relationship leaves Jake cold, but Tom is too tempting, and when hard times force Jake to accept Tom’s helping hand, he finds himself between two men who’ve lost their way.

Cass Pearson is a troubled soul. He loves Tom with all he has, but some days it feels like he hasn’t much to give. Jake seems like the perfect solution. Cass risks everything to push Jake and Tom together, but Jake resists, wary, until the darkness of Cass’s past comes to call. Then Jake finds himself the last man standing, and it’s time to dig deep and shine a light for the men he’s grown to love.

Because MISFITS was published a few years back, it’s had time to receive a couple of notable awards, including being a Lambda Literary finalist.
awardsgrahpic

My Review:
This is a contemporary M/M/M romance set in/around London. Everybody knows I’m an Anglophile, and a book about three sexy Brits building a relationship was too intriguing to resist.

Tom and his long-time partner, Cass, own five restaurants together. Cass is the head chef and creative force, while Tom minds the business end and helps scout new locations/concepts for their uniquely developed eateries. They have been together 9 years and are in a stable, committed relationship…that is open. See, Tom and Cass work long, long hours and–with schedules like ships passing–don’t spent many nights together so they are cool with each finding a bit of companionship when necessary. They have also sometimes shared a lover, but this has been rare.

Tom meets Jake one night while scouting a potential new location. Jake is his especially candid waiter whose tics are curious. The meal is a disaster, but Tom and Jake make an impression on each other. Tom isn’t even put off by Jake’s many tics and outbursts, finding his Tourette’s syndrome oddly endearing. Tom takes Jake to his nearby flat for a good time, and Jake wakes the next morning to find Cass offering him a cup of tea. Eep!

Okay, so the thing is, Tom is a wealthy guy–has been his whole life. He’s what Cass calls a ‘fixer’–and Cass should know; Tom loved Cass back from a history of poverty, drugs, theft and incarceration. Cass figures Jake caught Tom’s eye not only because he’s attractive, but because he could sense Jake’s need for a bit of TLC. Cass encourages Tom to find Jake again, and help him if warranted.

It’s not a conscious search–Tom and Jake encounter each other randomly a few weeks later. Jake is angry, and embarrassed that Tom never mentioned Cass. He doesn’t understand Tom and Cass’s open relationship, and his attraction to Tom is frustrating. It brings out all the tics. Tom offers Jake a job, but Jake is too proud to accept it. He does offer to do some work for Tom–without pay. So, Tom takes Jake under his wing on his latest restaurant venture. They work well together, though the touchy-feely bits are not happening because Jake doesn’t want to get between Tom and Cass.

Over the course of a few months Tom, Jake and Cass interact regularly and become very close. There is a lot of relationship building here–not a short seduction moving into a whole lotta three-way sex. Nope. This book is really about relationships and I loved that. Jake is initially attracted to Tom, and feels so guilty about his feelings when he sees the deep love between Tom and Cass, but Cass makes heroic efforts to develop a friendship with Jake. Cass knows he’s distant with Tom–he has always felt inadequate to Tom’s love–and wants Tom to have a partner who really loves him and who can be around more than Cass. Not that Cass wants to leave-he doesn’t–he just wants to know that Tom has a stable lover that can see him more than one or two nights a week.

The POV shifts between Tom and Jake for the bulk of the book, though the end is all Cass. It was interesting to get Jake’s POV, because he is, quite literally, the man in the middle. Enfolding him in Tom and Cass’s relationship is platonic for a good bit of the story, and there are only a few key sex scenes that hit the page. Jake is a very compelling character due to his emotional issues, and how hard he works to have a normal life. He is unsettled by Cass–how can Cass accept him knowing how he feels for Tom?–but comes to depend upon Cass’s efforts at friendship. Cass isn’t delicate about Jake’s TS, he is blunt and Jake appreciates the freedom in talking about this condition that has been a stigma for so long. The love that Tom and Cass lavish on Jake sparks his growth into a more confidant person–and an equal partner in their developing relationship.

I really enjoyed how these men worked cooperatively for the benefit of all. A menage story is always susceptible to issues of inadequacy and dominance, but this book felt tender and compassionate. I would have read the whole book in one sitting, but I (foolishly) began it 11:30pm and had to get SOME sleep in that night.

Interested? You can find MISFITS on Goodreads, Riptide Publishing, Amazon (US, or UKBarnes & Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords. I received a review copy of this book via NetGalley.

****GIVEAWAY****

Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link for your chance to win an ebook of MISFITS.
Good luck and keep reading my friends!

About the Author:
Garrett Leigh is an award-winning British writer and book designer, currently working for Dreamspinner Press, Loose Id, Riptide Publishing, and Fox Love Press.

Garrett’s debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.

When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.

Garrett is also an award winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at blackjazzdesign.com, and co-owns the specialist stock site moonstockphotography.com with renowned LGBTQA+ photographer Dan Burgess.

Otherwise you can find her on her website, twitter or Facebook.
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