Title: Part of Me
Series: Friendship, Texas #4
Author: Magan Vernon
Release Date: Feb 21, 2017
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Welcome back to Friendship, Texas. A town where your best friend may be dating an Olympic swimmer and his best friend may or may not also be an Olympic swimmer you sort of, kind of did the nasty with against Nonna's goat pen.
“Is that…?” I asked, staring at Dr. Burly Santa.
He smiled and nodded. “That would be your baby’s heartbeat.”
The emotion I’d been storing away came flooding back as tears burst from my eyes. A baby. A person. This was real. I was carrying a tiny human inside me.
The doctor tried to console me as he gave me samples of prenatal vitamins and paper after paper was piled in a folder with my name and September on the front.
September. My baby’s due date.
Holy shit, I was going to be a mother.
And Johnny was going to be a father.
I had to do so many things to prepare and people I had to tell. But at that moment, I just stared down at my stomach. My stomach holding my baby.
This wasn’t just about me and my future anymore. This was about us. And whether I liked it or not, this baby was a part of me, which meant Johnny was a part of me. It was time we stopped running from each other.
“Why not? Starting to have second thoughts? Don’t want to let yourself go and have another session against the goat pen?” Johnny asked, wiggling his eyebrows and unwrapping his straw.
“I can’t drink because I’m pregnant,” I blurted.
Johnny stopped, mid opening his straw, letting it hang in the air as the paper fell to the table. He blinked once then twice before he opened and closed his mouth. “What?”
I sighed. “I’m pregnant. Okay? I thought I was just sick at your apartment then I went to the doctor at school, and they did a pregnancy test and referred me to an OB in town who confirmed it. I’m due in September.”
“Are you sure…?” he asked, still holding the straw in midair.
“Sure that I’m pregnant or sure that it’s yours? Because I haven’t been with anyone else in a very long time and we weren’t exactly good about using protection. So, yes, I’m sure. And if you want to ask any other questions, I really don’t have the answers. I just know that a bun is in my oven, and no one else but you, me, and the doctors know. Not Lia. Not my dad. No one.”
“Shit…I should have pulled out, but your dad came home, and I was so close, and it was too late…shit…” He ran his hands over his face and stared into the bowl of chips as if it had the answers.
We sat silently for a few minutes before he finally stopped staring and his eyes were on me again. “So…what do you want to do?”
I raised an eyebrow. “What do you mean what do I want to do?”
“I mean do you want to get married? ‘Cuz I’ll propose right now. Fuck dating and taking it slow, let’s do this,” he said, taking his straw wrapper and twisting it into a bow before holding it out to me.
I shook my head. “Just because I’m pregnant doesn’t mean we need to get married. We barely know each other.”
“Yeah, but we’re having a kid, I mean at least I think we are. I’m all for women having a choice and all, but if you’re thinking of another option, I’d like to know that too.”
I sighed. “I don’t think I can do that other choice. I heard the baby’s heartbeat the other day, and well…there is a person in me. A person with a heartbeat.”
Johnny put his hand on mine. “Tell me what you want me to do, and we’ll figure it out together.”
I looked up, meeting his concerned eyes, which was something I never expected. “I don’t know what I want,” I squeaked out.
I was never a crier, but now, with the extra hormones, I felt like I could cry at the drop of a hat. That was the last thing I wanted to do in a restaurant with a hot swimmer staring at me.
“Wanna get out of here and go somewhere more private?” he asked.
“But aren’t you hungry?” I asked.
He smiled and pulled out his wallet, setting a few bills on the table. “I can swing through a drive-through. Come on.”
Johnny stood up and offered me his hand. “Let’s get out of here.”
Magan Vernon has been living off of reader tears since she wrote her first short story in 2004. She now spends her time killing off fictional characters, pretending to plot while she really just watches Netflix, and she tries to do this all while her two young children run amok around her Texas ranch
Decadentâ¦ Sensualâ¦ Forbiddenâ¦
12 Masters. 12 Desires. 12 Fantasies Come to Life. Meet the Masters of Blasphemyâ¦
About MASTERING HER SENSES (Blasphemy #2, 2/21/17):
12 Masters. Infinite fantasies. Welcome to Blasphemyâ¦
He wants to dominate her sensesâand her heartâ¦
Quinton Ross has always been a thrill-seekerâso itâs no surprise that heâs drawn to extremes in the bedroom and at his BDSM club, Blasphemy, where he creates sense-depriving scenarios that blow submissivesâ minds. Now if he could just find one who needs the rush as much as himâ¦
When an accident leaves Cassia Locke with a paralyzing fear of the dark, sheâll try anything to get help. Ready to fight, she knows just who to ask for helpâthe hard-bodied, funny-as-hell Dom sheâd always crushed onâand once stood up.
Quinton is shocked and a little leery to see Cassia, but he canât pass up the chance to dominate the alluring little sub this time. Introducing her to sensory deprivation becomes his new favorite obsession, and watching her fight fear is its own thrill. But when doubt threatens to send her running again, Quinton must find a way to master her sensesâand her heart.
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Taking Cassiaâs hand, Quinton guided her to the locker room, then through it to one of the private Jacuzzis. It sat flush with the floor and had tiled steps down into the shallow tub. He adjusted a few knobs, and the bubbling water came to life. He turned to her. âAfter what happened earlier, Iâll completely understand if you prefer to do something else. I just want to make you feel good. So, no blindfolds and no darkness, just pleasure. Do you feel up to that?â
âI think that sounds incredible,â she said. âI love hot tubs.â
Brave woman, once again. âWell, all right, then. Go ahead and get in. I need to make one further arrangement.â When she slipped into the water, he stepped out of the room and called the clubâs food service to order a tray of refreshments for them to share. âHowâs the water?â he asked when he returned.
âAh-mazing,â she said, submerged almost to her chin with her head resting against the curved tile.
âGood.â He unbuttoned his jeans and shoved them down over his hips.
Cassiaâs mouth dropped open.
Quinton grinned, and tugged the denim all the way off until he stood before her naked as the day he came into this crazy world. âDamn, girl, you know how to make a man feel ten feet tall.â
Her lips snapped shut. âI, uhâ¦â
âDonât pick up your jaw on my account. I meanâ¦â He waded into the water.
She rolled her eyes. âMy jaw did not drop.â
âOh, Cassia. Did you just roll your eyes at me, little one?â He moved until he stood right in front of her. The water bubbled just below his hips, leaving his half-erect cock exposed and nearly at her eye level.
A fast shake of her head as her eyes went wide.
âNo? You didnât just roll your eyes at me?â He donned a well-practiced stern expression and affected an ice-cold stare, even though Quinton was totally enjoying himself. âBecause I know I was quite clear on what the consequences would be if you did.â
âIâm sorry, Sir,â she said, holding up her hands. âI wonât do it again.â
âSit on the edge of the tub, Cassia.â
Slowly, she complied. And he enjoyed every goddamned second of the water sluicing off her body. Over her breasts, her nipples, the curve of her belly. Lowerâ¦
âFeet up on the edge next to you. Legs open.â He arched a brow.
Releasing a shaky breath, she got into position, and fuck if she wasnât a vision. Pussy open to his view. Rivulets of water running over her skin. A flush in her face and anticipation in her eyes.
âWider,â he said.
She let her knees fall to the sides.
âJust like that.â Without another word, he sank in the water to his knees right between her thighs and cupped her ass in his hands. âNow, donât move a muscle.â
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Join the MASTERING HER SENSES Facebook Party on February 21st! JOIN THE PARTY HERE!About Laura Kaye: Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of thirty books in contemporary and erotic romance and romantic suspense, including the Blasphemy, Hard Ink, and Raven Riders series. Growing up, Lauraâs 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. Laura also writes historical fiction as the NYT bestselling author, Laura Kamoie. She lives in Maryland with her husband and two daughters, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.
Today is the release day blitz for The Truth About Lennon by K.L. Grayson! We have a fantastic celebration for you, so check it out and grab your copy today!!
About THE TRUTH ABOUT LENNON:
Lennon Barrick-St. James is making headlines as New York City's hottest new socialite. Only she isn't new at all. One well-intentioned night gone wrong has landed the daughter of the vice presidential candidate Christopher St. James on the front pages of every newspaper and magazine in the country.
Forced by her father to stay out of the limelight, Lennon flees to the quiet town of Haven, Texas, where she vows to lie low and avoid men. Well, except for the sexy biker she just ran off the road--she definitely won't be avoiding him.
Already has a girl in his life, and he sure as hell doesn't need another. Especially the beautiful and sinfully sweet angel that just descended upon the quiet little town he calls home.
The only problem is that the more time he spends with Lennon, the more he wants to be with her. And that's just not going to work for Noah. He's already been burned once and he's not so sure he's ready to go down that road again.
Noah has spent the last five years putting his life back together after secrets and lies ripped it apart. So what will happen when he learns the Truth about Lennon.
Later that night, I’m crawling into bed, my sketch pad in hand, when my phone rings. Brenna’s name flashes across the screen.
I don’t want to answer, because I already know we’ll end up in another fight. And I’m sick of fighting. I push the button to ignore the call.
I’ve enjoyed my short time here in Heaven, and it isn’t necessarily because of Nova and Noah—although they play a big part. But I’ve enjoyed the quieter life. I’ve enjoyed exploring the little shops in town, getting to know the friendly locals, and seeing the potential all around me. I’m doing what I want when I want without having to answer to anyone. No publicist watching my every move, and no looking over my shoulder everywhere I go, wondering if the paparazzi are hiding around the corner, just waiting for me to screw something up. And I haven’t screwed anything up. I’ve made some mighty fine decisions—both business and personal—since I’ve been here, if I do say so myself.
My phone vibrates again, but this time when I look down, I smile.
Noah: How is your night going?
Me: Better now that I’m talking to you.
I snuggle into my covers, waiting for him to respond.
Noah: I was going to call, but I didn’t want to wake you up.
Me: I’m in bed, but you didn’t wake me up.
Noah: Now we’re getting somewhere. Bed, huh? What are you wearing?
I can’t help it, I grin.
Me: Am I supposed to be wearing something?
Me: I can think of a few ways for you to come warm me up ; )
A few seconds later, my phone rings, and I pull it to my ear. “Hello?”
Noah growls. “You’re killing me.”
The sound of his voice is enough to send my body into overdrive. “In the best possible way though, right?” Because you’re killing me, too.
“You have no idea.”
I hear the sheets rustling, and I know he’s in bed. Oh, what I wouldn’t give to be there next to him.
“I think I have an idea.”
“Are you really naked?”
“Do you want me to be?”
“Damn,” he mumbles. “I would kill to be over there right now. You know that, don’t you? You know that if I didn’t have Nova here, I’d be there in a heartbeat.”
“I know.” My heart melts at his sweet words.
“I haven’t been inside of you in days.” His voice is low and raspy, his drawl much more prominent, something that happens when he’s turned on.
“Really?” he admonishes. “Because I’m beginning to think it’ll never happen again.”
I chuckle. “You miss my body that much, huh?”
He’s silent for a few beats, and then he takes a deep breath and blows me away with his words.
“It’s more than your body, Lennon. It’s your scent and the way it wraps itself around me. It’s the way your eyes sparkle when you smile and the sound of your laughter throughout my house. And how you are with my daughter. You’re amazing with her. You’re gentle and kind and loving and… it’s everything. It’s you. I miss you.”
“Unlock your door.”
I end the call, and two seconds later, I’m hauling ass out the front door in my pajamas. When I hit the bottom step of his porch and find Noah half-naked in front of his open door, wearing nothing but a pair of low-slung sweats, I nearly lose my breath. I’m not sure if it’s the tattoos crawling up his arms, or the way he’s hanging on to the top of the door frame—it could even be his warm, brown eyes, which are eating me from top to bottom—but he looks different.
“What took you so long?” His slow, sexy grin pulls me in, and I walk straight into his open arms.
I pull my bottom lip between my teeth and smile. “I had to put clothes on.”
In an instant, Noah scoops me up, kicks the door shut, and is moving down his hall.
“Why the hell would you do something like that?”
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About the Author
K.L. Grayson resides in a small town outside of St. Louis, MO. She is entertained daily by her extraordinary husband, who will forever inspire every good quality she writes in a man. Her entire life rests in the palms of six dirty little hands, and when the day is over and those pint-sized cherubs have been washed and tucked into bed, you can find her typing away furiously on her computer. She has a love for alpha-males, brownies, reading, tattoos, sunglasses, and happy endings…and not particularly in that order.
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Damage Control (Dirty Money Book 2) by Lisa Renee Jones Release Date: February 21st Genre: Contemporary Romance
Wall Street meets the Sons of Anarchy in Damage Control, the smoldering, scorching next novel in the explosively sexy Dirty Money series.
The only thing more dangerous than a dark secret is a damaged heart…
Shane Brandon has been pushed to the brink, torn between his corrupt family and his explosive, all-consuming desire for Emily Stevens, who he now knows is not who, and what, she seems. Has he trusted the wrong person? Will she, not his brother Derek, be the ultimate destruction of his family Empire?
Emily tries to run from Shane, but he will stop her, confront her, force her to reveal all — one hot touch and kiss at a time, under every intimate detail of who this woman is, and what she wants, is exposed. But as he tears away the dangers of the unknowns with the woman in his bed, and in his heart, The Martina Cartel has set their sights on his company, his family, and the one piece of leverage they believe he won’t gamble with: Emily.
“You make me remember I need to be good and right in my choices.”
“Do you ever question doing what is good and right?”
“There have been times when I felt like my hand was forced.”
“When you were a lawyer?”
“No,” I say. “I manipulated the law, as does every attorney, but I never broke it. I’m talking about when I’m with my family.”
“Did you go where they lead?”
“Not so far.”
“That sounds like you might.”
“I don’t want to be them.”
“You aren’t them. You don’t have to be them.”
“I know that,” I say. “But you just keep telling me so I don’t forget.” Her legs hit the bed frame and she grips my arms.
I lean into a kiss and she pulls back, her hand pressing on my chest. “Wait. Now it’s my turn to say talk to me. Are you okay?”
“Death happened. The one thing I can’t control. It’s not the night to push me to stop protecting you. Not tonight. Can you do that?”
“Yes. We can.”
“We,” I repeat, “and that word sounds as good on my tongue as I know you’re going to taste. I’m going to make love to you properly. The way I plan to many times in our future.” I reach down and untie her robe, letting it fall open; my fingers sliding underneath just far enough to tease her nipples. They pucker beneath my touch, and her lashes flutter, settling on her cheeks. “But when it’s over, I’m going to fuck you hard and fast again.”
I tug gently on her nipples and she bites her lips. “Look at me,” I order gently.
She opens her eyes, and there is desire in their depths, but there are shadows there too,. I do not think she intends for me to see doubt or uncertainty that wasn’t there before. That I do not like or wish to know ever again. I want it gone. Now. Tomorrow. Forever. I reach up and rip the silk tie from her robe, wrapping it around my hand, before I reach up and caress the robe off her shoulder, letting it tumble to the ground.
“Give me your hands,” I order, but it’s really a question: Does she still trust me?
She studies me for several beats, her eyes narrowing ever so slightly, and I do not know what she sees in mine, but she offers me her hands. I wrap the silk around her wrists then lean in close to her, my cheek against her cheek, my body touching her nowhere else. “Now you’re at my mercy.”
“Yes,” she agrees. “I am.”
“How do you feel about that?”
My lips curve with the answer that is every bit the combination of sweet sexy honesty I’ve come to expect from her. “I’m going to make you warmer.”
I go still with that question, which on the surface is innocent, but I wonder if it truly is or if it’s about those shadows in her eyes. “I promise,” I say. “And you know, I never—”
“Make a promise you don’t keep.”
“Exactly,” I say, and her reference to my previous words tells me that I am not the only one on a mission of trust, and I intend to deserve hers.
I bring my hands to just above her shoulders, letting them lightly touch her before beginning a slow caress downward. She makes a soft little sound that has my cock thickening and my blood running hot, but I won’t rush this. My lips follow, tracing a line down one of her arms, then the other. I lean and caress my lips over hers, a feather light touch that teases me, if not her.
I take her hands in mine, pressing them behind her head. “Hold them there, for me, so I can see all of you. Understand?”
“You intend to tease me incessantly,” she says, without so much as a hint of hesitation. “Yes. I understand.”
I wrap my arm around her waist and pull her naked body against me, my free hand on hers above her head, our mouths a breath apart. “I intend to lick every part of you, and then do it again, so yes. If that’s the definition of incessant teasing, then yes. I am going to tease you incessantly.” I close my mouth down on hers, my tongue licking into her mouth, a deep, hungry tasting I force myself to end far too quickly. “That was the beginning. Should I could continue?”
“Please,” I say. “I like that.”
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Hard Rules (Dirty Money 1)
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GIVEAWAY PRIZE: 2 $25 Amazon gift cards, 3 signed copies of Hard Rules and 3 Dirty Money tote bags
About the Author:New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Lisa Renee Jones is the author of the highly acclaimed INSIDE OUT series. Suzanne Todd (producer of Alice in Wonderland) on the INSIDE OUT series: Lisa has created a beautiful, complicated, and sensual world that is filled with intrigue and suspense. Sara’s character is strong, flawed, complex, and sexy - a modern girl we all can identify with. In addition to the success of Lisa's INSIDE OUT series, Lisa has published many successful titles. The TALL, DARK AND DEADLY series and THE SECRET LIFE OF AMY BENSEN series, both spent several months on a combination of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling lists. Lisa is presently working on a dark, edgy new series, Dirty Money, for St. Martin's Press. Prior to publishing Lisa owned multi-state staffing agency that was recognized many times by The Austin Business Journal and also praised by the Dallas Women's Magazine. In 1998 Lisa was listed as the #7 growing women owned business in Entrepreneur Magazine. Lisa loves to hear from her readers. You can reach her at www.lisareneejones.com and she is active on Twitter and Facebook daily.
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From New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Max Monroe comes a new standalone romantic comedy.
My name is Lola Sexton, and I’m a sex addict.
Okay…that’s a lie.
Truth is, I’m a serial dater turned dating and relationship columnist for The San Francisco Times. My readers call me Sex. Sex Says.
I love my job.
I love my life.
And I hate Reed Luca.
My name is Reed Luca, and I’m a liar.
Ironically, that’s the truth.
I’m 31, and my occupation is…well, complicated.
My favorite kind of woman comes in all shapes and sizes, but always has a big brain.
I’ve never hated anything.
Lola Sexton hates me.
Luckily, it’s a thin line between love and hate, and with my help, pretty Lola will only be able to straddle that line for so long.
Disclaimer: Authors are not responsible for cost of equipment or subsequent injury incurred after the purchase of roller skates influenced by this book. Embody Lola Sexton's spirit animal at your own risk.
*Reed Luca is an asshole. No one wants to be his spirit animal.
**Okay. I wrote that. Maybe someone would want to be his spirit animal. I guess. Maybe. Sorry. (Not sorry.)—Lola
Amazon US: http://ow.ly/nczK3094V0d
Amazon UK: http://ow.ly/tqwU3096uuJ
Amazon CA: http://ow.ly/euHs3096uxo
Amazon AU: http://ow.ly/4iU73096uzM
Google Play: http://ow.ly/RvZ13096uEF
4 Star Review by Ashley
The writing duo of Max Monroe has done it again! I was in need of a rom-com and Sex Says did not disappoint at all. It held true to their winning formula of heart, steam, humor and sarcasm coming from characters you can't help but root for. And from the moment I met him, I rooted for the man, the myth, the legend, Reed Luca.
Enemies to lovers is what this book is totes itself as but it is much more. It's loving yourself, faults, triumphs and fears. And no one did that more than this two. Lola with her quirks, from her outfits to the way she lived on her own terms, stole the show. Her confidence was only matched by Reed's ability to do the unexpected. When Reed challenged what she knew to be true it was game on. But Reed wasn't going down without having his say. Did he have a lot to say!
I loved the banter and how these two played off of each other. Through their arguments and squabbles, these two opened up and truly let someone in for the first time ever. It was great seeing them embrace all that made them who they were and share it fully with someone else.
This book was, at it's core, an unconventional love story. From roller stakes to fake accents, it was a gradual transition founded on communication and good old fashioned stalking the progressed Reed and Lola's relationship from enemies to lovers to best friends. Max Monroe delivered on every front with Sex Says. While it was light and hilarious, it was also poignant and full of heart. A true unicorn.
SEX SAYS SPOTIFY PLAYLIST: https://goo.gl/M7dynV
BLITZ WIDE GIVEAWAY LINK: http://ow.ly/6xbY309bzLv
About the Author
A secret duo of romance authors team up under the pseudonym Max Monroe to bring you a sexy, laugh-out-loud new series…& more. ;)
New writing partners and long time friends, Max and Monroe strive to live and write all the fun, sexy swoon so often missing from their Facebook newsfeed. Sarcastic by nature, their two writing souls feel like they’ve found their other half.
Stay tuned for the future—this is where the fun begins.
Some men are born responsible, some men have responsibility thrust upon them. Henry Charles Albert Edgar Pembrook, Prince of Wessco, just got the motherlode of all responsibility dumped in his regal lap.
He’s not handling it well.
Hoping to force her grandson to rise to the occasion, Queen Lenora goes on a much-needed safari holiday—and when the Queen’s away, the Prince will play. After a chance meeting with an American television producer, Henry finally makes a decision all on his own:
Welcome to Matched: Royal Edition.
A reality TV dating game show featuring twenty of the world's most beautiful blue bloods gathered in the same castle. Only one will win the diamond tiara, only one will capture the handsome prince’s heart.
While Henry revels in the sexy, raunchy antics of the contestants as they fight, literally, for his affection, it’s the quiet, bespectacled girl in the corner—with the voice of an angel and a body that would tempt a saint—who catches his eye.
The more Henry gets to know Sarah Mirabelle Zinnia Von Titebottum, the more enamored he becomes of her simple beauty, her strength, her kind spirit…and her naughty sense of humor.
But Rome wasn’t built in a day—and irresponsible royals aren’t reformed overnight.
As he endeavors to right his wrongs, old words take on whole new meanings for the dashing Prince. Words like, Duty, Honor and most of all—Love.
Sarah stands up and presses her lips against mine. And it’s so unexpected, so surprising—I freeze up. But only for a moment. As her mouth gently moves over mine, I begin to thaw. She’s so fucking soft, her taste so very sweet. The kiss is almost chaste—at least it’s the most chaste I’ve ever had. Unpracticed.
And yet, it still manages to make my heart pound against my ribs like an animal in a cage.
“What are you doing?” I whisper, when she pulls back just a little.
“I’m distracting you.” She looks up at me uncertainly. From behind those ridiculously prim little glasses with those big, dark eyes that could bring me to my knees. “Is it working?”
My tongue traces my lower lip, craving more of her.
“I’m not sure. Keep trying—I’ll let you know.”
She smiles quick and relieved . . . and then she reaches back up, wraps her arms about my neck, and kisses me.
Her two lips envelop my lower one, then the upper, all eager, pleasing sweetness. My hands find Sarah’s lower back and I pull her in close, tight against me. Slowly, I open my mouth and she mirrors my movement, opening for me. And it’s good. So very, very good.
It’s like my blood has turned to gasoline, and the touch of her wet, warm tongue is the spark.
I delve deeper, kiss her harder—more demanding—taking the lead. I cup her head in my hands, holding her still while I plunge and devour. A moan seeps from her lips and I devour that too. But then, breathing harshly, I tear my mouth away.
“Sarah, maybe we shouldn’t. Maybe we should just—”
“I’m sick of being afraid, Henry. And I’m so tired of being alive . . . but not really living. I’ve wanted this for a long time. I want . . . you.” It’s only then that hesitation dims her eyes. “Do you want me too?”
I grip her arms. “More than I’ve wanted anything or anyone in my entire life.” She takes my hands in hers, lifts them and presses my palms to her breasts. They’re soft and full and absolutely perfect.
Beneath her robe, her bedclothes are paper thin. I trace my thumbs across her nipples, feeling them harden and peak. I want to suck on them until she’s mindless. I want to lick every inch of her skin and watch her flush with desire.
I wrap my arms around Sarah and lift her right off her feet. With a groan, my mouth is back to hers. Her small pretty hands cup my jaw as I carry her toward the bed. I stop against a wall on the way, knocking a frame sideways, lifting her leg in one hand and wrapping it around my hip so I can thrust against her.
There’s so much I know—deviant, filthy, lovely moves. And I want to teach her every damn one.
Emma Chase is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the hot and hilarious Tangled series and The Legal Briefs series. Emma lives in New Jersey with her husband, two children and two naughty (but really cute) dogs. She has a long-standing love/hate relationship with caffeine.
Title: After You
Author: Stephanie Rose
Release Date: Feb 21, 2017
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After You is the final STANDALONE novel in the Second Chances series.
I had the happily ever after . . . until it was gone.
Three became two. And I was alone.
Our time—my time—was over. Alone was the right way to be. The only way. Life was me, my son, and my memories. Until the day I met someone who turned my lonely existence upside down.
This man made me smile, made me laugh, made me ache for his touch.
But I couldn’t.
He shouldn’t awaken feelings I resolved to bury with my husband. But he did.
I couldn’t let his presence make my heart race. I couldn’t let him into our little world, where he fit so perfectly. I couldn’t want Nick.
But I did.
I rescued people. My family relied on me to lend a hand. Everyone thought of me as the fixer, but no one had the first clue how to fix me. Until Ellie.
The freckled beauty’s sorrow was like a well-worn shirt—easy and familiar, difficult to part with—and she wore it comfortably. And though I was hers from the moment our eyes first met, she’d never be mine. I loved her in the here and now, but how did I compete with a ghost?
How can there ever be anyone After You?
5 Star Review by Ashley
Oh man! After You just rocked itself into my favorite book from Stephanie Rose (sorry Evan and Paige). This story got to me in a way I wasn't expecting at all. It was sweet, emotional and oh, so sexy.
It starts with the first time Nick and Ellie meet, at Evan and Paige's wedding (YAY)! I liked Nick from the start- he was bold and confident and when he approached Ellie, his world stopped. Time, fate whatever you want to call it just wasn't on his side. Ellie was still grieving the loss of her husband, Jack, and getting used to her new normal as a single mother. Flash forward five years and this is where the book takes place...
Ellie was the star of this book for me. She was strong yet vulnerable and so lonely it made my heart ache for her. Sure she had friends and family but there was this emptiness that couldn't be filled since Jack's death. It took was one scout leader with his patience, good looks and charm to start to bring her out of her funk. I loved watching her grow and become vibrant and full of life again.
It was truly the small things that made the biggest impact in this book. Hand holding, light touches, the encouragement towards Jack that allowed Nick to worm his way into Ellie's world. It wasn't easy- at all. She fought him every step of the way. But that first kiss- sigh- it was magic. Perfection. Even when they took a a big leap forward, Ellie was still battling with her conscience. Guilt has a funny way of doing that to a person. And how can Nick, as amazing as he is, compete with a ghost?
I think my favorite thing about After You was the slow build. How I fell and felt everything right along with Ellie and Nick. I felt her fear and her guilt but also her want to move forward. And my gut was churning right along with Nick's as they kept moving forward and then taking four steps back. I let out an audible sigh of relief when Ellie finally let her last wall crumble. When she realized that it was ok to love again. That loving Nick didn't diminish what she had with Jack. And keeping Jack in her heart didn't mean that she loved Nick any less either. Both loves were different but not less powerful, beautiful or all-consuming.
And while I'm sad to see the Second Chances series come to a close, After You was the best possible way for it to end. My fingers are crossed that Stephanie Rose will give me some more of the firemen I met in this book. Because let's face it, those firemen were HOT and hilarious!
“Nick, let’s sit here.” Jack yanked Nick by the hand down the movie theater aisle and pulled him into a seat. Jack plopped down in a seat next to him adjacent to the wall. So much for my son wanting to sit anywhere near me tonight.
“Perfectly good seat right here.” Nick patted the chair next to him. All the theaters had been renovated with leather recliners. Usually, since my son dragged me to the latest kid movie, it was a real fight to keep my eyes open and not drift off mid-movie. I was sure sitting next to Nick for the next couple of hours would keep me wide awake.
“I can’t wait to see Optimus Prime!” Jack exclaimed through a mouth full of popcorn.
“Me, too! He was my favorite when I was your age.” Nick took a handful from the bucket resting on Jack’s lap.
“And I used to drive a car like Bumble Bee.”
“You did?” I squinted at Nick as I took a slurp of diet soda.
“A yellow Camaro.” Nick’s mouth tipped in a sexy smirk as he pushed his seat back.
I bit my lip to hold in a laugh as the lights dimmed.
“You can wipe that smug look off your face. Chicks loved that car.” Nick whispered in my ear. The hot tickle of his breath against my cheek made goose bumps spread down my neck to my shoulder.
“Did you drive around blasting Metallica in your banana-colored Camaro?” I giggled back. “At least they saw you coming.”
He laughed as the opening credits started to roll. “Women loved my banana.”
I sputtered a cough as I choked on a piece of popcorn. Nick shrugged with a sly grin as he settled into the seat.
I leaned my elbow on the armrest between us, and it grazed Nick’s forearm. I jumped at the contact and jerked my hand into my lap, where it was safe. I was catapulted back to my teenage years when the slightest contact with a boy I liked sent shivers up my spine.
Nick wasn't a boy, though. He was a man—a gorgeous man with unforgettable lips that knew how to kiss a woman stupid. I wanted to touch more than just his elbow. Keeping a level head around him was damn near impossible with adolescent hormones ravaging through my thirty-something body.
Nick laughed at my hands, now frozen on my thigh.
I focused on the screen until Nick pulled my hand back on the armrest.
“We can share, Ella-Jane.” He smirked as he slid his hand against mine and laced our fingers together.
My palms were damp as he brought our joined hands to his lips. He pressed a long, wet kiss to the inside of my wrist.
The bristles of his beard scratched against my skin as goose bumps drifted down my arm. I felt the warmth of his mouth all the way to my toes. My body was enjoying the simple but intimate attention too much at that moment to move my hand.
Something felt wrong holding Nick’s hand around Jack. When I glanced at my son, he was munching on popcorn and oblivious to anything but the robots on the screen. I smiled at Nick, but he didn’t smile back. Illuminated by the soft flicker from the movie, the heat and yearning in his eyes burned brightly. My breathing quickened as his finger blazed a light caress back and forth over the top of my hand.
For five years, I never so much as glanced in another man’s direction. Now, Nick simply holding my hand melted me into a puddle. It was pathetic but spoke the volumes I couldn’t admit out loud.
Stephanie Rose was born and raised in the Bronx, New York and still lives there with her superhero-obsessed husband and son.
She has a Bachelor’s degree in Business and a day job in marketing, but she always has a story in her head. Her books are full of swoon-worthy men and feisty heroines.
This lifelong New Yorker lives for Starbucks, book boyfriends, and 80s rock. Her voice is often mistaken for a Mob Wives trailer.
Books by Stephanie Rose:
Always You | Only You | Finding Me | Always Us
Title: Lost in Between
Series: Finding Me #1
Author: K.L. Kreig
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: February 20, 2017
We all have one.
That magic number that will get us to agree to do anything, be anything.
Don’t sit on your gold-plated high horse and say you don’t because you do. Everyone does. Each of us has something we covet enough that we’d sell ourselves to have it.
What’s my tipping point, you ask? Apparently a cool quarter mil will do the trick.
What does one do for 250 large, you wonder? Anything the infamous, gorgeous playboy of Seattle wants. For the next four months I’ll be Shaw Mercer’s arm candy, his beck and call girl, his faux girlfriend. I’ll be his to command, mold, push and pull in any direction he sees fit.
I’ll fight falling into bed with him. I’ll fight falling in love with him even harder. I’ll fail at both. And when my past and present collide in the most unexpected of ways, I’ll learn that while one man’s love for me has never died, the only man’s love I really want will never be mine.
As a USA Today Bestselling author, I write stories that are deeply emotional with flawed characters, because humans ARE flawed and if we read about perfect characters living in their perfect world, first of all, snoozer, but secondly, we never experience the gratification of redemption.
Outside of writing, I’m just a regular ol’ Midwest girl who likes Game of Thrones and am obsessed with Modern Family and The Goldbergs. I run, I eat, I run, I eat. It’s a vicous cycle. I love carbs, but there’s love-hate relationship with my ass and thighs. Mostly hate. I like a good cocktail (oh hell…who am I kidding? I love any cocktail). I’m a huge creature of habit, but I’ll tell you I’m flexible. I read every single day and if I don’t get a chance…watch the hell out. My iPad and me: BFFs. I’m direct and I make no apologies for it. I swear too much. I love alternative music and in my next life I want to be a bad-ass female rocker. I hate, hate, hate spiders, telemarketers, liver, acne, winter and loose hairs that fall down my shirt (don’t ask, it’s a thing).
We're just over a week away until the release of PASSION RESTORED by Carrie Ann Ryan (!!!), but we couldn't wait. So we're revealing the first chapter over the next three days! Find out more about PASSION RESTORED and dive into the first chapter below!
About PASSION RESTORED
The Gallagher Brothers series from NYT Bestselling Author Carrie Ann Ryan continues with the one brother who thinks he can handle it all and the one woman who could change that.
Owen Gallagher likes everything in its place and is organized to a fault. While his brothers have each dealt with their own personal tragedies and stresses, Owen figures he’s had it pretty easy. That is until his perfectly ordered world is rocked at its foundation and he’s forced to rely on others. Now, he must heal his body and his soul while trying to ignore his delectable and utterly off-limits neighbor.
Liz McKinley is stressed out, exhausted, and not in the mood for a bearded and growly man in her ER. When she patches him up to the best of his ability, she’s prepared to push him firmly from her thoughts. Of course, that would be easier if she and her best friend hadn’t bought the house next to his. Now their paths seem to cross daily, and she is finding it harder and harder to say no to the injured and angry man next door. But she’s been scarred one too many times in her life, and even though this Gallagher looks good enough to eat, she knows that sometimes, sating that craving is the worst thing she can do.
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PASSION RESTORED releases February 28th - preorder now!
Read the First Part of Chapter One:There was just something about a woman in jeans. In fact, he had a particular pair of jeans on his mind. They were deliciously tight and molded to this woman’s body so perfectly that Owen Gallagher had to grip the edge of the bar so he didn’t fall to his knees in thanks. It wasn’t every day that a woman left him breathless by merely walking into a building. Owen swallowed hard, thanking God once again for tight jeans and the way a woman could move. His younger brother, Murphy, raised an eyebrow at him before turning so he could follow Owen’s line of sight. Owen knew when Murphy had spotted her because the younger man whistled low through his teeth before he turned over his shoulder and tilted the neck of his beer. “Nice,” Murphy mouthed as he turned back so he was standing side to side with Owen. This way both of them had a clear line of sight but could also talk to each other like they’d been doing before the woman in jeans showed up. Owen swallowed hard, his mind going to dirty places better left untraveled. “Nice” wasn’t a good enough word to describe this particular siren in blue jeans. The woman was all curves and sex appeal, even if she hadn’t exactly dressed the part of a bar goer. In fact, when she’d stormed into the “bar just a few moments prior, Owen hadn’t missed the apprehension in her gaze before it turned to annoyance. She’d scanned the space before stomping toward a group of men and a single woman in the corner. Owen hadn’t really paid attention to that group other than noticing them in passing and still wasn’t looking too hard. He only had eyes for the sexy, blonde woman in a decently loose shirt and tight jeans. Even though her shirt wasn’t clingy, he could still tell that she was pretty damn stacked and would have more than enough to fill his hands. He loved when that happened. Loved putting his face between a woman’s breasts and sucking and licking until she came. He adored watching the way her tits swayed back and forth when he fucked her from behind, and how they bounced high when she rode him, her hands sliding down his thighs as she arched her back. Of course, with breasts that perfect, he’d have to rise so he could lick them, suck them, and even bite down on her nipples. Then he’d cup her with both hands, rolling the tight nubs between his fingers as she continued to ride him like he was a damn pony. It wasn’t just the blonde’s breasts that held his attention, however. The sway of her hips called to him, too, beckoned him closer with each step. She had a perfect set of curves and a delightfully lush ass that just begged to be fucked. He knew the curves of her butt would jiggle and shake when he fucked her, and he’d have more than enough to hold onto as he pounded into her. And those hips? Hell, those hips were the perfect handles, no matter the position the two of them took as they fucked until the sun came up. His cock hardened painfully behind his zipper, and he let out a groan. Well, shit. He hadn’t fantasized like that about a woman he hadn’t even spoken to in a long while. Maybe Murphy was right, and he needed to get laid. He’d turned into a damn lecher and he didn’t like it one bit. Annoyed with himself, Owen sipped his club soda nice and slow so he didn’t choke on his tongue, and so he’d have something to do with his hands now that he’d let go of the damn bar. The blonde woman spoke to another gorgeous, brown-haired woman, pulling her away from the men in the corner. The guys didn’t seem too pleased about that, but they didn’t crowd the women either. Owen counted that as a blessing, and before he did something stupid like drool over this unnamed blonde, he pulled his attention from her and shifted it to his brother. The same brother who now stared at the two women with an equally hungry look in his eyes. Well, shit. “I’m not going to call dibs since we aren’t in high school and have grown beyond that, but…” Owen trailed off when Murphy chuckled. “Yeah, no dibs necessary. I’m pretty sure your stare like a puppy that just found a delicious new chew toy to chomp and hump in equal measure was for the blonde.” Murphy winked. “I’ve always been partial to brunettes myself.” Owen shook his head, a smile playing on his lips. “Good to know.” He took a sip of his soda. “I wasn’t that bad, was I?” Murphy raised a brow and set his half-empty beer down on the bar. They had both driven here tonight and had a one-beer limit, though Owen had opted for club soda since he had a headache. “You couldn’t keep your eyes off her. I’m surprised you didn’t follow her around, trying to catch her scent. Plus, your jaw dropped just a little bit, though you somehow kept in the drool. Good for you.” Owen flipped Murphy off before setting his drink down next to his brother’s beer. “Shut up. I wasn’t close to drooling.” He wiped his chin just in case, and Murphy threw his head back and laughed. “See, no drool.” “That’s probably not the best way to show you weren’t acting like a horny teenager. Been a while, has it?” Murphy grinned, and Owen resisted the urge to punch the other man in the shoulder. “It hasn’t been that long.” Owen winced as he remembered that he hadn’t slept with anyone since Tracy, and that was over three months ago. He and Tracy slept together off and on when their schedules and relationships matched up. Recently, there hadn’t been much matching. If he were acting this hard-up for a woman he didn’t even know, maybe he needed to call Tracy and see about letting off some steam. Yet even thinking that didn’t appeal. Didn’t really sound like a good idea at all. “If you have to qualify it, then it’s been too long,” Murphy explained. “Why don’t you go ask her out? Or at least talk to her. What could you lose?” From the way Blondie glared at her friend, Owen was pretty sure he could lose something like a finger…or worse.
About Carrie Ann RyanCarrie Ann Ryan is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of contemporary and paranormal romance. Her works include the Montgomery Ink, Redwood Pack, Talon Pack, and Gallagher Brothers series, which have sold over 2.0 million books worldwide. She started writing while in graduate school for her advanced degree in chemistry and hasn’t stopped since. Carrie Ann has written over fifty novels and novellas with more in the works. When she’s not writing about bearded tattooed men or alpha wolves that need to find their mates, she’s reading as much as she can and exploring the world of baking and gourmet cooking.
Today we have the release day blitz for Entwined by Lacey Black! Check out this sexy new contemporary romance and grab your copy today!
10 years. 3,650 days. 87,600 hours.
That’s how long it has been since I saw my best friend. But who’s counting? Walking away from Luke Thomas was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but the choice was out of my hands. I left Las Vegas a seventeen-year-old girl, afraid and alone, and returned about the same. I was forced into a situation I didn’t want to be in. Until that day. I haven’t seen him in ten long years, but one look at the man he became and that killer smile, and I knew I would never be the same.
Life goes on.
I learned that valuable piece of information at a young age, but sometimes a memory creeps up and smacks me square in the face. Or more accurately, a person. The day my best friend walked away was the day I realized I’d never be the same. My life became work, family, and women, and I was doing great. Then she walked back into my life. One look at the grown-version of Sidney Rogen leaves me breathless and yearning for more.
But love is never easy.
And our love story isn’t perfect.
In a heartbeat, one person can wrap around you so tightly, you’re entwined forever. That’s our love.
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10 years ago
“So, I’m sure you see why I think we should break up, right? I mean, we’re both heading off to college soon, and I want to experience everything that college life has to offer.”
I gape at Jessica, my girlfriend for the past five months. Wants to experience everything? That’s code for ‘wants to sleep around.’ I’m a dude. I know.
“And you just had to do this tonight?” I ask, looking back at the doorway that leads inside my house. The same house where my entire family and a good amount of my friends are gathered to celebrate my high school graduation.
“Well, I just thought it was best to cut the cord now, you know? Like…just do it.”
“Whatever, Jess. If you want to break up now, that’s fine.”
“Really?” she asks, twirling her long brown hair around her pointer finger. “You’re gonna be okay?” She gives me those big brown, puppy dog eyes that won over my heart–and my dick–during Christmas break.
I’ve known this moment was coming since I started dating Jessica. I didn’t see anything long-term developing with her. Call me an asshole, but I knew she was just someone to help me pass the time during my final year of high school. But I also knew going into this that she felt the same way. I guess, in a way, we both used each other to keep ourselves company until we moved on to the next stage in our lives.
“I’m going to be fine, Jess. We both knew it was coming to this eventually, right?”
She continues to twirl her hair around her fingers. Why had I never noticed how fucking annoying that was? “Listen, we had a great time. If you’re ever in the Seattle area, look me up, ‘kay? We can maybe spend some time together for ol’ times’ sake.” Her smile tells me exactly what her comment means. She’s looking to hook up again if I’m ever close to where she’s attending college.
“Maybe,” I reply with a shrug.
As much fun as I’ve had with Jess in the last few months, I don’t see myself reaching out to her anytime in the future. The sex has always been all right, but nothing I see myself driving upwards of eighteen hours to get. There’s plenty of mediocre ass left in Vegas if I’m that desperate for a hook up. And, honestly, as an eighteen-year-old red-blooded male on the verge of experiencing college life, I’m pretty sure I’ll have no problem moving forward from here.
“Bye, Luke. It’s been fun,” she says before placing her full lips against mine. The kiss is brief, closed mouth, and lacks the usual tongue and groping we generally partake in. This kiss is goodbye.
I watch as she walks away, heading around the side of the house so she doesn’t have to go back the way she came; where my entire family celebrates. Gazing out over the darkened backyard, it’s not lost on me that there’s no going back from here. That I’m finally leaving the only home I’ve ever known. I’ve graduated high school, will start UNLV in a couple of months, and will finally be out from under the controlling thumb of my mother. Ever since I was younger, Blake and I chalked it up to me being the baby of the family for her ever-present hovering and involvement in my life.
It’s time for me to grow up and experience life.
And I’m starting it without a girlfriend.
The slightest sound of something thumping against wood pulls my attention away from the emptiness of night and towards the small fort in the back corner of the yard. Built ten years ago out of pieces of scrap wood we’d find around the neighborhood, the fort was my brother’s and my escape from the house. We’d spend hours upon hours in that thing, playing with GI Joes, having Nerf gun wars, and when we were older, sneaking off to steal our first kisses.
But I know the noise coming from inside isn’t from my brother. There’s only one person who still uses that fort: our neighbor, Sidney.
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About Lacey Black:Lacey Black is a Midwestern girl with a passion for reading, writing, and shopping. She carries her e-reader with her everywhere she goes so she never misses an opportunity to read a few pages. Always looking for a happily ever after, Lacey is passionate about contemporary romance novels and enjoys it further when you mix in a little suspense. She resides in a small town in Illinois with her husband, two children, and a chocolate lab. Lacey loves watching NASCAR races, shooting guns, and should only consume one mixed drink because she’s a lightweight. Lacey’s debut novel, Trust Me, was released in August 2014 and has been a Bestseller twice for Free e-books, including #3 on Amazon and #2 on iBooks, as well as #1 for Contemporary Romance. Submerged also made her an International Bestseller in the summer of 2016.
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