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Beautiful Façade by Katheryn S Rose | Blog Tour

I’m so happy to share my review for Beautiful Façade Blog Tour! Let’s start…

Book Name: Beautiful Facade
Author: Kathryn S Rose
Genres: 
Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
Publication date: February 2nd 2021
Book Acquired: Xpresso Book Tours, ARC
Ratings: ⭐⭐⭐⭐ ⭐

Synopsis:

On the day that 16-year-old Winter Starling had her life and dreams shattered by a sexual assault, she meets Kai, a boy from her high school obsessed with music. They develop a deep friendship, which comes to an abrupt end when Kai unexpectedly has to leave. Winter has no idea why he went or any way to contact him.

Ten years pass, and Winter has constructed a new reality for herself. Now living in Melbourne, she has a successful career in advertising and is engaged to Liam King, a star player in Australian Rules Football. Winter has a perfect life.

During a night out, Winter runs into Kai, now the lead singer of ‘The Stonevilles.’ Winter and Kai rekindle their friendship, and to everyone around them, their attraction is evident. With Kai back in her life, Winter’s past threatens to ruin her relationship with Liam and everything she has worked to achieve. But can she risk losing Kai a second time?

Emotional and edgy, Beautiful Facade is about love, loss, healing, self-discovery, and the messy battle between one’s head and one’s heart.


Review:

The main thing that struck me in this book is the mention of sexual assault and the importance of mental health. Finding it in a romance book is very less, but the way Kathryn has woven the story in and around Winter’s life and mental health is something worth reading.

[TW: This books contains mentions of sexual assault]

From the start, we get to see the version Winter has used to shield herself from her past. This Winter is working fancy, lives fancy, behaves fancy and even has a fiancé that’s fancy. But this façade cracks when someone from Winter’s old life walks through that wall she had built up years ago.

I loved the tension that is between the two. It’s fresh and raw. It glued me to the book and had me anxious about the end. Second chances are hard to find, but Winter and Kai surely had luck in their favour.

A pleasant yet emotionally raw book about two people finding each other at the time it was least expected. Breaking down each other’s barriers and dealing with things that are too hard to bear. This book was as real as it could be. I loved every bit of it.


Author Bio:

Kathryn S Rose is a mum, wife, reader, writer, traveller, and food enthusiast. Writing a book was always on her bucket list, and finally, with Beautiful Facade, it has come into fruition.

Kathryn is interested in the study of human behaviour and obtained a Bachelor of Social Science, with a focus on Community studies and Welfare Work.

Since completing her studies, she has worked in several jobs, which have enhanced her understanding of social issues, human development, relationships, and lifestyle. Some of these insights are reflected in her writing and give her inspiration.

Besides books, Kathryn has many other loves. She enjoys listening to live music, relaxing at the beach, embarking on random hiking adventures, and indulging in too much food and wine with ​family and friends.

When Kathryn and her family aren’t traipsing around the world, they can be found residing in Perth, Western Australia.

The Shape of Stars Unknown by Sybil Le Pyrmont | Blog Tour & Interview

I’m so happy to share my review for The Shape of Stars Unknown Blog Tour! Let’s start…

Book Name: The Shape of Stars Unknown (The Aldarfall Saga, #1)
Author: Sybil Le Pyrmont
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy
Publication date: October 15th 2020

Synopsis:

World domination is the least of their problems.

A STRANDED DEMIGOD. Lau of the House of Feofar, troubled and headstrong, screwed up. Royally. Now he lives out his days in exile on Earth – the very planet he once tried to exterminate.

A RUDDERLESS MORTAL WOMAN. Silver Laing leads the ordinary life of a white-collar worker. Lonely and desperately in search of purpose and new horizons, she gets more than she bargained for when she is offered a mysterious job.

A CATACLYSMIC PLAN BILLIONS OF YEARS IN THE MAKING. When a deadly visitor from Lau’s shrouded past threatens to lay the world in ashes, Silver and Lau must form an unlikely alliance against ancient and far superior forces.

An alliance with the potential to shake the very foundation of the Universe.

Shimmering new worlds?
Sizzling tension?
Secrets as old as time?
Splashes of humour?

If your answer to all of the above is ‘Hell, yeah!’ then The Shape of Stars Unknown is your guy. This first book in Sybil Le Pyrmont’s new urban fantasy adventure series, The Aldarfall Saga, will take you from Germany to Tibet, from Japan to Iceland and all the way to the other end of the Universe.


Interview Questions:

1) When did you first realise you wanted to be a writer?

Truth be told, I can’t remember a time when I did not want to be a writer. Even before I read my first word, I stood wide-eyed before the novels at my local bookstore and wondered what magic skills were required to create such a little miracle and have it displayed on those shelves for the world to see. One of my greatest regrets is not having mustered the courage to try my hand at writing much, much earlier in life.

2) How long does it take you to write a book?

The rough draft of the complete Aldarfall Saga – at the time one single book of about 1,300 pages – took me seven months to complete. I then broke it into three parts, the first of which is now published as The Shape of Stars Unknown. Approximately eight years and countless revisions later, TSOSU has made it from rough draft to published book; I’m a reasonably fast writer, but my exasperating perfectionist streak makes me the slowest editor in the world (not to mention the day job, which gobbles up a substantial amount of time).

3) What do you think makes for a good story?

Disclaimer: this is my personal, highly subjective view. A good story needs to make me feel at home. It is a quality I find somewhat slippery to define, let alone explain. “At home” evokes visions of cosy mysteries or heartwarming Christmas stories with adorable puppies, right? Well, this is not at all what I mean, although I’ll gladly take the doggos off your hands.

Here are some examples of books that give me this particular homely feeling:

The Picture of Dorian Gray (Oscar Wilde)

Shibumi (Trevanian)

The Name of the Rose (Umberto Eco)

Into Thin Air (Jon Krakauer)

It (Stephen King)

Oni (Marc Olden)

Harry Potter (J.K. Rowling)

Hannibal (Thomas Harris)

Hagen von Tronje (Wolfgang Hohlbein)

Not one of these books is snuggly-puppy pleasant to read. One of them even is non-fiction. But they all make me feel comfortable. I stepped into a welcoming world from the very first time I read the very first syllable. Sometimes it’s the characters (like in Hagen von Tronje), sometimes it’s the writing style (Dorian Gray, Shibumi, Into Thin Air), sometimes it’s the philosophy or worldview (Dorian Gray, Shibumi) that gives me this strange, homey sensation. In extremely rare cases, a story combines all three and thus knocks my socks off (here’s looking at you, Shibumi).

And what elevates a story from good to great is when it makes me feel intelligent. This is what Shibumi and The Name of the Rose do, for example. Shibumi is supposed to be read as a satire on the spy thriller, and there are dozens of innuendos and references that I caught only upon reading it several times. I still discover something new every time I pick it up, not to mention that it makes me think, learn … and google. The latter, by the way, has been taken to extremes by The Name of the Rose. Keep your search engine handy when you read that one!

In short, a good story gives me a literary home and a few additional brain cells.

4) If you could be one character from the book, who would you be and why? 

Lau, my male protagonist. For all his faults – and he has many – he is a man of courage and extraordinary resilience. Certain events in his past have traumatised him deeply, but even though he has no active memory of them, he continues to fight these demons every day. He has lived for billions of years without losing his zest for life, and not only is he a free spirit, but he is an intellectual warrior. I would love to have just one ounce of his strength, mental and physical.

5) If you co-author a book with your favourite author, who would it be?

Definitely Trevanian. He was a cosmopolitan scholar with a brilliant, crystal-clear mind and a flair for wordplay, puns and fine irony. I have no idea what on earth I could have contributed to this co-authorship, but I would have learned the world from him. Oscar Wilde comes in a close second.

6) Your all-time favourite quotes.

“Writing is the only thing that when I do it, I don’t feel I should be doing something else.” (Gloria Steinem)

Among the gazillions of quotes on writing, this is the one that rings most true for me. Whatever I’m doing, all I want is get back to my desk. Whenever I’m there, all may not always be right with the world, but I am where I feel I’m supposed to be.

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” (Oscar Wilde)

“We’re fools whether we dance or not, so we might as well dance.” (Japanese proverb)

These two go in the same direction. People will criticise you no matter what and no matter how hard you try to please them. You might just as well be yourself – way less exhausting, way more satisfying.

7) Can we expect a sequel or a new novel soon?

Both sequels to The Shape of Stars Unknown are written … technically. Due to the revisions and changes I made to the first book over the past years, however, books II and III require massive rewrites. I’m working on them as we speak.

As for new novels, I have several manuscripts in various stages of completion. One is a darker urban fantasy, one could be deemed magical realism, and two of them dabble in the realm of mythology. As excited as I am about these drafts, the sequels to TSOSU take precedence at this time.

8) A few words for our readers. 

The one thing I would like to say most of all is thank you. Thank you so much for taking the time to (virtually) meet me and The Shape of Stars Unknown. We all have many worries right now – health, family, friends, jobs – which makes me all the more grateful for your time!

You, the readers, are the most fundamental element in a writer’s universe. Your words carry immense weight, whether in the guise of a book review or as a comment on social media. Although a thick skin may be part of a writer’s toolbox, your opinions and observations can make or break our day. Either way – wield that power whenever you can, dear readers! We love to hear from you!

If you’d like to get in touch, please drop me a line at sybil@spyrmont.com – or find me here:

https://www.facebook.com/sybillepyrmont

https://www.instagram.com/shibumi1971/?hl=en


Author Bio:

Sybil Le Pyrmont was born in Germany and was raised on the Canary Islands (that Gallic name is a pseudonym – her actual name has as much flair as a tax return). Although she now resides in Frankfurt, Germany, her heart has been beating for Tokyo ever since she spent a year in that city and discovered her epic love for all things Japan. That includes, to her acute embarrassment, the Shinagawa train station jingle she has installed as her ringtone. When Sybil isn’t writing, or dreaming of the anonymous donor who will some day gift her a house in Japan, she splits her time between her airline day job and long rants about the sunshine and the always-too-hot weather.

Sybil writes urban fantasy adventure to whisk her readers away to realms of imagination that have a distinct possibility of existing somewhere in the depths of the Universe.

Visit spyrmont.com for more on Sybil and her writing.

The Breakup Plan by Elle Vaughn | Book Blitz

The Breakup Plan
Elle Vaughn
Publication date: December 15th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Elliot has just made the list of America’s hottest bachelors. A successful business mogul who has made a name for himself in Silicon Valley, Elliot’s life is just about perfect—that is until an incriminating photo of himself appears in a tabloid magazine. If anyone discovers who the other person in the photo is, his career would be ruined.

Penny’s life has been anything but charmed. Struggling to make ends meet, she’s determined to make a better life for herself. Desperate to rescue her little brother from the same troubled life she had growing up, Penny will do whatever it takes to make sure he’s safe. Now that she’s starting an internship at a large corporation, she can only hope this is the start of something better.

And that’s when an asshole named Elliot Faulkner makes her an offer she can’t refuse.


EXCERPT:

I think that if my family had died differently, or at least under better circumstances, I would have felt less angry. Better, maybe. More at peace. I don’t know, I guess that sounds pretty crazy. But I have to believe that if their deaths hadn’t been so fucking tragic, I could have accepted it and moved on. But I couldn’t and I never will. Because I just can’t. That’s why I was the way I was as I kid. That’s why I was the way I was as a teenager. That’s why I am the way I am now. Their deaths were a perfect illustration for the fucked up son and brother they got stuck with, and they paid the final price.

I’m just thankful I eventually got my life together. Finally pulled my head out of my ass. Somehow made it into a good college (my uncle helped with that, it pays to have connections), and that’s when things started to turn around. After years of beating myself up and hating myself, I finally figured out the secret to life. Stop giving a fuck. And I started funnelling all my God-given energy into making something of myself. I live my life for me and no one else. This way I’m happy and no one gets hurt—Including myself. I keep everyone I know at arms-length and it works. I’m a damned successful executive of a damned successful corporation and I’m finally happy. After a life of torment and agony, I’m finally happy. I take what I want, pass on what I don’t, and naturally, I don’t do relationships. There’s no need for them—they only cause unhappiness which is what I’m looking to avoid. After getting a good job straight out of college (thanks again, Uncle Richard), I worked my ass off all the way to the marketing executive of a dominating online retailer, and my every dream has come true. I am exactly who and what I’ve always wanted to be. Until one day my entire fucking life was turned upside down.

So, that’s how I met the biggest pain in the ass I’d ever known—Penny Reynolds.



Author Bio:

Elle Vaughn is an avid book lover – especially romance novels. She’s the author of the Anna and Quinton novella series and is always working on a new story project. When she’s not lost in her character creations she can be found chasing around her toddler, being outside in the Colorado outdoors, gardening and attempting to cook for her family!

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Ain’t She Sweet by Whitney Dineen | Book Blitz

Ain’t She Sweet
Whitney Dineen
(Seven Brides for Seven Mothers #2)
Publication date: December 15th 2020
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Romance

Tara Heinz began her modelling career at the tender age of twelve. After spending fifteen years drooling over forbidden foods, she does the unthinkable. She enrols in culinary school and becomes a pastry chef.

After a nasty breakup with her rock star boyfriend that leads to tabloid war, Tara takes a job at a rural lodge in Oregon to escape the spotlight she no longer desires.

James Cavanaugh is a farmer in Oregon. His days are spent building his business and his nights are spent sleeping, so he can get up at four in the morning.

Ruby Cavanaugh has plans for her son that involve her new pastry chef. Of course, neither James nor Tara know what’s going on until it’s too late.


EXCERPT:

After arranging an assortment of gourds on her newspaper-covered dining room table, Ruby picks up her telephone to call her oldest son, Brogan. “How are you and Addie doing?” she wants to know. As the first recipients of her matchmaking endeavour, the success of their union is integral to her confidence in setting up her younger son, James, with her new pastry chef.

“She’s great. We’re great. New York is beautiful in the fall.”

Whoever said glitter was the herpes of the crafting world never fully appreciated its hypnotic effects, Ruby thinks while spraying gold glitter paint. “I knew you two were meant to be.”

“I don’t know how you decided that, but I’m glad you did. For a while there I thought you were trying to set Addison up with James. Speaking of which, how are things going between him and Tara?”

“What do you mean?” Ruby asks, trying—and failing—to sound innocent.

“Don’t try to tell me you haven’t set your sights on her for my little brother.”

After several moments, Ruby dejectedly confesses, “It’s been hard finding ways to throw them together now that James’s farm stand is mostly closed for the season. I’ve had to resort to hiring your brother to put in a garden here at the lodge.”

“Interesting. I’m not sure I should offer, but let me know if I can do anything to help.”

“You and Addie are still coming home for Christmas, right?”

“Yes, ma’am. We arrive the second week of December and are planning on staying until the first week of March. I’ll be working on my new novel and Addie is going to commute to a hotel she’s redesigning in Portland.”

Ruby walks around the table, eyeing her decorative fall creation before firing off a final burst of sparkle. “I might need your help then. In the meantime, don’t bring up Tara’s name when you talk to James. I don’t want him to guess what I’m up to until it’s too late.”

“You make me nervous, Mom, but you did such a great job for me that I promise not to interfere in your latest project.”

“Good. Now, I’ve got to go. Your brother will be here any minute to meet with Tara about the dessert portion of the garden.”

“Does he know he’s meeting with her?” Brogan asks.

“Of course not. What fun would that be? Bye!” Ruby hangs up on her son before he has a chance to reply. After refreshing her lipstick and picking invisible lint from her sweater, she’s off to make another love connection.


Author Bio:

Whitney loves to laugh, play with her kids, bake, and eat French fries — not always in that order.

Whitney is a multi-award-winning author of romcoms, non-fiction humour, and middle reader fiction. Basically, she writes whatever the voices in her head tell her to.

She lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her husband, Jimmy, where they raise children, chickens, and organic vegetables.

Gold Medal winner at the International Readers’ Favourite Awards, 2017.

Silver medal winner at the International Readers’ Favourite Awards, 2015, 2016.

Finalist RONE Awards, 2016.

Finalist at the IRFA 2016, 2017.

Finalist at the Book Excellence Awards, 2017

Finalist Top Shelf Indie Book Awards, 2017

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Broken Beginnings by C. Hallman, J.L. Beck | Cover Reveal

Broken Beginnings
C. Hallman, J.L. Beck
(The Moretti Crime Family, #2)
Publication date: February 19th 20201
Genres: Adult, Dark Romance, Romance

The night I saved her eight years ago I knew a choice had been made.

Years later and I can’t manage to let her go.

She’s barely eighteen, virginal, and kind.

Touching her would be a sin, but letting another man have her would destroy me.

Every time I close my eyes I see her, standing there, afraid, scared out of her mind because of that one fateful night.

She doesn’t know the lengths I’ve gone to protect her.

The blood spilled, the words said.

Nothing deters my obsession… it’s wrong, immoral, to follow her, and watch her at every turn but I can’t help myself.

Her safety, her life. It’s the only thing of importance to me.

When an enemy lurking in the shadows challenges that I’ll do whatever I can to protect her, even make a deal with a devil, knowing the only way out is death.


Author Bio:

J.L. Beck is a USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR, she has written over fifty different romance novels. She started her journey of writing back in 2014 and hasn’t slowed down a second since then.

She’s captivated by real romance, and loves reading about strong “ALPHA” males, as well as sassy heroines that know or may not know what they want. She is best known for delivering a happily ever after but has ended things on a cliff-hanger a time or two.

When she’s not typing away at her next book you can find her being a mom to her two adorable kiddos and wife to her high school sweetheart.

She’s obsessed with Starbucks, social media, and is definitely more of a dog person than cat.

Author links:
Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

Born and raised in Germany, Cassandra moved to the United States when she was eighteen. She always had a love for reading, that love slowly transpired into writing. She put fingers to the keyboard and started writing about the dark side of romance.

Cassandra is one half of the international bestselling author duo Beck & Hallman, who are most knows for the writing the Northwood University series.
The pair also write under the pen name Jenna Reed.

Author links:
Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Bookbub / Instagram

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A Shattering Glimpse by Nicole Putter | Book Blitz

A Shattering Glimpse
Nicole Putter
Publication date: December 10th 2020
Genres: Adult, Romance, Thriller

The dreams: For years, Claire Baxter has been haunted by ceaseless dreams of an FBI Agent.

The dilemma: She has no idea who he is or if he even exists.

The death: Right before she’s set to graduate from college, a dream reveals him dying in a brutal explosion.

One touch and not-so-normal Portland girl, Claire Baxter, can get a glimpse of your nearby future. She considers nothing about her clairvoyance a gift, it’s a curse, to say the least. Her parents raised her with the rule that she is to keep the secret at all cost, leaving little room for relationships of any kind. As if the burden isn’t enough, FBI agent Byron Black becomes the phantom of a series of sinister dreams.

The night before her final college exam, she has another dream, except in this one, he dies in a nuclear explosion. Does he exist? Will she find him? If so, can she save the countless lives affected by a blast that can crush steel like it’s a piece of paper, or… is this something her lost, psychic mind conjured up?

EXCERPT:

Claire had no sooner ended the call than the fleeting nightmare returned, as tangible as the test she would take in an hour. Her hands started to shake, causing her phone to drop to the floor. Sweat striped the back of her neck. Her phantom was in danger. As she raked her trembling fingers through her blonde curls, she experienced a sense of déjà vu from her 14-year-old self.

30 March 2014

Claire woke in a pool of cold sweat. That was a first. She had always been able to predict the future of those with whom she came into physical contact. Never before had she seen someone without touching them, let alone not knowing them at all. Her visions were subjective. If she warned the receiver of her touch, it could change, though she would never tell. Only her parents and best friend, Brent Lee, knew about her unique gift. They called it a gift, Claire often considered it a damn curse.

The man from her vivid dream was tall, not buff, but rather lean and toned. He was at the beach with his friends: Tanned with dark, ruffled hair and deep, brown eyes above a sharp jawline. A deep scar puckered his left cheekbone.

Attempting to impress some girl, he meandered deeper and deeper into the ocean. Later, he was laboring for breath as the wild rollers clutched at him and the desperate torrent sucked him further and further from the shore. It was a battle of arms, legs, and waves. He coughed and gasped, splashed and jolted, doing everything in his power to stay alive until a coastguard came to his rescue.

Once they reached the safety of the beach, she learnt his name as everyone bustled around to ensure he was okay. He was alive, smiling and called Byron.

That night Claire had met Special Agent Black of the FBI for the first time. He had been the centrepiece of her dreams for the next eight years. Okay, perhaps centrepiece was overdoing it, but he did feature often. Not every night, but at least once a month. Maybe less. Definitely less. The dreams changed. Sometimes they reflected significant instances in his life, like graduation and his sister’s wedding. Other times, she merely saw his face. No sound, just him. She knew a lot about the man of her dreams. Nope, the man from her dreams. Now she even knew how he would die. If he even existed.

I can’t let this happen. She squeezed her eyes shut and flopped back down on to her black-and-white mess of a bed. I must warn him.


Author Bio:

Nicole Putter is the author of the Shattering Series and several short stories. She completed four creative writing and journalism courses with honours between a successful career in finance. When she’s not writing fiction, she blogs about her passion for books and writing. She’s also happily married, and a proud mom of one son and a Jack Russel Terrier named Striker.

Orange Blossoms-Love Blooms by Dalia Dupris | Book Blitz

Orange Blossoms-Love Blooms
Dalia Dupris

(California Hearts, #1)
Published by: The Wild Rose Press
Publication date: October 19th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Strong-willed Elaine Hart is determined to save Hartland Ranch, her family’s California orange groves. After the recent ending of a turbulent relationship, she vows to keep her professional and personal life separate, even though she’s attracted to the man who holds her family’s fate in the palm of his hands.

Serious-minded banker, David Cole, has two goals- collecting on the delinquent ranch account and resisting his attraction to the unpredictable and beautiful Elaine Cole.

When a series of circumstances brings them together, they must decide if they will continue to suppress their emotions or succumb to passion and take a chance on a forever love.


EXCERPT:

“If I have to wait until Monday for him to repair the car, I’ll need to find a hotel.”

“There’s one inn and one bed and breakfast in town and they’re both completely booked months in advance.” His eyes twinkle and he laughs the deep, echoing laugh that I’m starting to get use to. “I’m not making this up. You can call and check for yourself, if you don’t believe me. Strawberry Festival is a big deal and people travel from out of town to come and enjoy the festivities. You’ll have to spend the night with me.”

The last thing I need right now is to spend the night with David. With the undeniable attraction between the two of us, I know exactly what will happen. My vow to not mix work and my social life has completely gone haywire, because here I am sitting in the cosy intimacy of his car. Betsy is on the way to the mechanic’s garage and I’m stuck in a remote little town that I never knew existed until a week ago. On top of that I’m with the most magnetic man I’ve ever met, who manages to make me feel emotions that are simultaneously new, exciting and frightening.

“I’m okay with that.” He’s the kind of man that I can trust. It’s me I’m more worried about. If we are going to be in close proximity, I’m not certain that I can keep my hands to myself. “Do you have a two-bedroom apartment in Littleton?’ I try to sound nonchalant.

“No, I don’t.” He has a twinkle in his eyes. “I have a one bedroom.”

“Oh,” I sigh, resigned to the fact that this is going to be a super challenging weekend. “We’ll have to make the best of it then, won’t we?”

He throws his head back and lets out a deep, robust laugh.

“What’s so funny?” Here I am getting all sweaty, nervous and yes, even a little aroused, thinking about the possibility of sharing a bed with him and he’s laughing like its a joke.

“Okay.” He gains control of himself—finally, casting a more serious expression in my direction. “You should have seen the look on your face. As if it would be torture to have to share a bed with me.”

“That’s what’s so funny?” I glare at his remarkably even features. If only he knew that I was wondering what kind of underwear he wore, boxers, briefs or God forbid, that the man slept in the nude. “Better that you don’t try to read my mind. Although, I’m glad to see that you have a good sense of humour.”

“Of course I do.” He gives me an odd look, and his words are slightly defensive. “Who doesn’t have a sense of humour?”

“Can we stick to the subject?” I tap my fingers on my leg and l glance at him inquisitively. “So…we’ll be sharing a room, is basically what you’re saying?”


Author Bio:

I’ve always enjoyed reading and writing and grew up surrounded by a wide variety of books, from westerns to romance novels. I love stories–watching them, listening to them, reading them, and writing them. My contemporary novels include complex and diverse characters that grapple with family legacy, love, loss, and laughter as they face the challenges of life. When I’m not working on my next manuscript, you can find me bike riding along the beach with my husband or exploring the mysteries of the universe with my daughter. I enjoy music, dancing, meditation, and long walks.

O Night Divine: A Holiday Collection of Spirited Christmas Tales | Book Blitz

O Night Divine: A Holiday Collection of Spirited Christmas Tales
Publication date: December 17th 2020
Genres: Adult, Historical Romance, Romance

A MASTERPIECE OF HOLIDAY STORYTELLING…

Enjoy this stunning holiday collection from some of your favorite Dragonblade Publishing authors in this collection of never-before published seasonal tales!

Imagine, if you will, that it is Christmas Eve.

The candles are guttered, one by one, and a hush falls over the parlor. The children have gone to bed, and a tall, gloriously decorated Christmas tree looms in the shadows of the hearth’s dying embers. A tattered copy of Charles Dickens’ masterwork, “A Christmas Carol” sits, cold and lonely, upon a table nearby.

A small gust of wind, hurling from the seam of an ill-fitting window, blows the cover open. The first chapter appears… “Marley’s Ghost”…

The clock on the wall chimes midnight.

Now, the magic happens.

From the gaily bedecked halls of Regency England to the cold and crisp air of the Scottish Highlands, and everything in between, enjoy the magic of a holiday collection that has drawn inspiration from Charles Dickens’ most beloved literary works. Where the ghosts of Christmas, the incandescent spirit of a tiny disabled boy, and the joy that is the very heart of the Christmas season come alive.

USA Today and Internationally bestselling authors bring you their version of a Dickens’-inspired holiday in O NIGHT DIVINE.

This collection includes:

Twas the Executioner Knight Before Christmas by Kathryn Le Veque

A medieval version of the Ghost of Christmas Future…

No one survives an Executioner Knight and least of all, Maxton of Loxbeare. But when he married his wife and had children, three little girls right away, Maxton grew a heart. He became a devoted and dedicated father who loved his children dearly. But the Executioner Knight in him still lived. So after a very bad dream, Maxton sees that, for his daughters’ sake, he must change.


The Laird’s Yulebringer by Caroline Lee

The Mackenzies are in mourning… none so much as their laird. Since the loss of his wife, leaving Callan to raise a young son alone, he believes he’s lost his chance at happiness. As his extended family gathers to celebrate the Yule together, they can do naught to raise his spirits… until a midnight visitor—of the ghostly variety—brings him hope for the future.


Making Spirits Bright by Chasity Bowlin

After a lifetime of secrets, scandal, and disappointment… Elizabeth doesn’t believe in happy endings, at least not for herself. But an unconventional nobleman, with the help of a novice Spirit of Christmas, may just change her mind…


The Haunted Scot by Hildie McQueen

The allure of a reformed rake…

She’s as determined to pursue him as he is to keep his distance. After a heartbreaking debacle, Thomas Sullivan decides to give up his roguish ways and considers the priesthood. Unfortunately, the beautiful arrival gives him second thoughts. Mary Asher is not sure why the handsome new driver tries to avoid her at all costs. After being told he follows her every move, Mary decides to test him.


Never Keep a Secret at Christmas by Maggi Andersen

’Tis not the season to be surreptitious…

Alice Dountry’s father has gout, and she must spend Christmas with her sister, Marian, Lady Belfries. Their neighbor, the gruff, bad-tempered Earl of Hawkinge, refuses Marian’s invitation to Christmas dinner.

While chatting with him over the garden wall, Alice suspects something deeper lies beneath his humbug opinion of Christmas. Hawkinge and his grandson, Hugh Gifford, are at odds. Alice writes to Hugh but must keep it a secret from her sister.

When the handsome Lord Gifford arrives, there is an immediate spark between them. But Lord Hawkinge is hardly welcoming, and now, Marian and her husband argue over the secret letter.


Her Star from the East by Mary Lancaster

Miss Emma Sayle has enjoyed two London seasons and rejected many suitors. Her heart was given long ago to an exciting prince of the east, a man of another country and another faith. As Christmas approaches, she daydreams of what her life with him might have been – until his ghost walks out of the freezing fog. But is it the ghost of his past or her future?


The Remembrance of Love by Meara Platt

Hyacinth Farthingale has known and loved Lord Innes Buchan since the day she was born. She is now in her debut season, and as Christmas approaches, it is high time this aloof and lonely lord realized his happiness depends on marrying her.


How to get an Earl of Christmas by Violetta Rand


Yuletide at Gillingham by Alexa Aston

A lonely holiday…

One boy abandoned by a greedy gambling father. Another boy watches his father slowly dying. A lasting friendship that will see them through the hard times—and beyond…

Top of Form

Bottom of Form

Can two lonely boys draw strength from one another during a Yuletide season that only promises heartbreak?


A Thrill of Hope by Anna Markland

Foiling an attempt to assassinate Queen Victoria earns Parker a medal and royal gratitude. The lunatic’s bayonet plunged into his thigh leaves him with a pronounced limp and reassignment to a small constabulary. Particularly trying is having to spend Christmas Day with his

miserly uncle.

During her family’s Yuletide celebrations, Samantha discovers she doesn’t love her straitlaced fiancé. A bleak future looms large.

Neither realize that anarchists are plotting to blow up a newly-constructed railway bridge—although Parker might if he’d heed the mysterious warning voices he hears.

A tale of the eternal struggle between good and evil.


A Gift for Agatha by Anna St. Claire

A visit and a warning…

Years after her husband’s death, Lady Agatha Wendt has become a surly, cold-hearted miser, increasingly left to her own company. Childless and with little family, the wealthy widow fears

falling into poverty and spurns even the smallest gestures of Christmas giving. A determined spirit visits the wealthy widow and warns her change must happen.

Charles Bentley, her butler, sees goodness in her, and finds himself attracted to the real Agatha—despite knowing they could never be.

Can the spirit awaken Agatha to her real fears and help her to overcome them in time to realize the gift she has always wanted?


The Heart is Never Silent by Aubrey Wynne

Miss Etta Rose Comden is desperate to protect her younger sister, Horatia, after the death of their father. When the heir—and Tia’s new guardian—finds out his ward is deaf, he makes plans to send her away and marry Etta. With no one to turn to, the sisters flee in the middle of the night.

Dr. Gus Wharren, disillusioned with his practice in London, retreats to his late grandmother’s estate. Instead of a much-needed respite, he finds two lovely females stranded along the road.

Two sisters on the run. A London physician who has given up on humanity. The spirit of a loving grandmother. The stage is set for a holiday full of coincidence, a little Christmas magic, and a happy ever after.


Of Christmas Past by Charlotte Wren

Pride and promise before forgiveness

At the volatile age of seventeen, Percival Josiah Northcott storms out of Highfield Hall on Christmas Eve, vowing never to return. It is a vow supported solely by pride, which, as the old adage goes, generally comes before a fall.

Five years later, Percival has fallen about as low as a man can get. He secretly longs to return home, but pride and fear stand in his way. That is, until he’s visited by someone from his past, someone who gives him the courage to seek his family’s forgiveness.

But first, he must promise to complete a very special task.


Tidings of Comfort by Elizabeth Ellen Carter

A boy with a remarkable talent…

In the lead up to Christmas, Captain Kit Hardacre is in London looking for his long-lost parents. After a disappointing initial search, he finds himself in the city alone. Bringing him out of his self-pity is a call to help in a search for a missing little boy. But which one of them is more lost?

When Kit finds Pip, he discovers a youngster with a remarkable talent for going directly into the heart of those he meets. After seeing Pip safely returned, Kit’s faith in family is restored and a kind word gives him the courage to continue his search.


A Christmas Miracle by Elizabeth Johns

Alex Hartmere, Duke of Frompton, has endured enough heartache to make any man bitter.

Having lost his wife and child in the war in Canada, he returns to England, only to inherit a dukedom from a father who dies in a scandalous duel soon afterwards.

Repairing to his family estate for Christmas, Alex finds his first love now widowed and penniless. Can a Christmas miracle, in the form of a crippled little girl, bring them the happiness which was once stripped away from them?


Her Christmas White Knight by Elizabeth Keysian

England, Yuletide 1587

The dice have really been loaded against Mistress Julia Wentworth. Little wonder she no longer trusts a soul—except for the urchin she rescued from the poorhouse. Having fallen in love with—and been abandoned by—a murderous traitor, Julia’s been turned out by her family and left to scrape what living she can on the brutal London streets. When a goose strays into her yard, it looks as if she’ll at least have something to feast on at Christmas.

Exploding into her life in pursuit of his goose is Myall Farrar, a scarred nobleman who loathes his miserly father and can’t afford to lose the fowl for which he’s scrimped and saved all year.

Can there be any common ground between the mismatched Myall and Julia? Is there any hope of goodwill within their families? And—perhaps more importantly—will the goose prove itself worth saving from the butcher’s knife?


Always the Mistletoe by Emily E K Murdoch

When a woman loves a man, it’ll take more than a little Scrooge like behavior to stop her standing by him. Her family, on the other hand…


A Libertine’s Christmas Miracle by Emily Royal

Christmas is a time for miracles

Alice and Ross Trelawney are enjoying a quiet Christmas in Cornwall, until their daughter Amelia strays onto the nearby estate of Mr. Scrimgeour, the infamous Beast of Boscarne. When Amelia comes home in tears after a terrifying encounter, Alice resolves to teach the Beast a lesson.

Haunted by his late wife’s ghost and taunted by the locals, Edward Scrimgeour hides away in his crumbling mansion. His peace is shattered when his neighbor’s hellion of a wife storms into his home on Christmas Eve. But she’s no ordinary trespasser. When events threaten to take a tragic turn, Edward is given a chance at salvation, showing that miracles can occur in the unlikeliest of places.


Past, Present, Future by Lynne Connolly

Rhona sent the love of her life away once, but now Frederick is back. He doesn’t care that she’s a housekeeper, and he’s a wounded soldier and the brother of a duke. For the three nights of Christmas, he’ll give her three gifts; wooden figures he carved for her in the long nights before his last battle. They represent their past, their present, and what they could have in the future. If she doesn’t accept his love this time, he’ll leave for good.


A Yuletide Yearning by Maeve Greyson

Regret is a sly enemy…

Captain Tait Mackenzie doesn’t regret a life of pirating, but it’s Christmas and he’s lonely. Thoughts of dying alone trouble him. What woman would settle for a life with a pirate lord?

If wishes and dreams were oceans and streams, she’d sail her way to happiness…

Ellie has always loved Tait, but he politely ignores her. She intends to change that with a little help from the North Star.

Can three pirate ghosts on Christmas Eve scare some sense into a Scottish rogue and make him see that the love he needs has been right in front of him all along?


A Strange Christmas Game by Whitney Blake

Mr. Charles Mason doesn’t expect a December summons to end in his own love story…

The Christmas Mistake by Josephine Templeton | Blog Tour

I’m so happy to share my review for The Christmas Mistake Blog Tour! Let’s start…

Book Name: The Christmas Mistake
Author: Josephine Templeton
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Adult
Published by: GenZ Publishing
Publication date: December 1st, 2020
Book Acquired: Xpresso Book Tour, ARC
Ratings: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Synopsis:

Dressed in nothing but Christmas lingerie, Carina has a bellhop deliver her in a gift box to her fiancé’s hotel room, but the last thing she expects when she is unwrapped is to see a sexy stranger in holiday boxers who looks like he just stepped off a magazine cover – definitely NOT her fiancé! How in the silver bells was she delivered to the wrong room?

As the owner of a small flower shop, Carina’s surrounded by romance on a daily basis. Her workaholic fiancé has been distant for the past several months, so she decides to drive from Baton Rouge to New Orleans to surprise him on Christmas Eve. However, that distance between them has brought loneliness, and the mere thought of the sexy stranger plucks at her mistletoe. When she discovers the reason for her fiancé’s lack of attention, will she put him on Santa’s naughty list and take the stranger for a sleigh ride?


My Review: 

Imagine standing in front of a person you think you don’t know is nothing but Christmas lingerie. You can’t right? But this is the best scene of this book that gripped me from the start. I was intrigued with the synopsis as soon as I came across this blog tour and I knew I had to read it.

Carina is a little conservative and shy person who tries to break out of her shell to impress her boyfriend with a spontaneous plan, which, fails miserably! Or does it? Stepping out in lingerie in front of another man is only the first of her problems.

Standing there staring at this gorgeous woman is none another than old-time flam Conrad, who recognises Carina straightaway. To make the situation a bit funny, he keeps dropping hints here and there until Carina finally figures who the handsome figure in her fiancé’s supposed room was.
Old flames die hard. Well, Carina and Rad’s flames are burning bright and orange. Their attraction to each other still sends tingly sensations up their spines respectively. But destiny has different plans and they keep missing each other until finally, they find each other.

The story is written in a diary format which gave me The Princess Diaries vibe and I immediately smiled and continued to read faster. (I’m not sure if that’s possible, but you get the point) The book was a completely new perspective to what I’ve been reading and I enjoyed it from start to finish.

The POV’s kept changing from Carina to Rad and vice versa, which as you all know, I love reading. It makes it so much easier to understand and connect with the book. In all, I loved this Christmassy-cheer and give it a full star rating!


Author Bio:

Josephine Templeton has six published novels that range from historical romance to urban fantasy. She has been to numerous conferences, including Heather Graham’s Writers for New Orleans, as well as a former member of Romance Writers of America.

Guardian of the Sky Realms by Gerry Huntman | Blog Tour & Author Interview

Book Name: Guardian of the Sky Realms
Author: Gerry Huntman
Genres: Young Adult, Urban Fantasy
Publication date: September 1st, 2020
Published By: Meerkat Press
Book Acquired: ARC, Publisher
Ratings: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Synopsis:

Maree Webster—an “almost-emo” from the western suburbs of Sydney—hates school, has few friends, and is obsessed with angels and fallen angel stories. Life is boring until she decides to steal a famous painting from a small art gallery that has been haunting her dreams: swirling reds, grays and oranges of barely discernible winged figures. There, she meets a stranger who claims to know her and stumbles into a world where cities float in the sky, and daemons roam the barren, magma-spewing crags of the land far below. And all is not well—Maree is turning into something she loves but at the same time, fears. Most fearful of all is the prospect of losing her identity—what makes her Maree, and more importantly, what makes her human. Guardian of the Sky Realms takes the reader on a journey through exotic fantasy lands, as well as across the globe, from Sydney to Paris, from the Himalayas to Manhattan. At its heart, it is a novel about transformation. Book two of the series will be released in 2021.