Genre: Contemporary Romance

Review: Tin Queen by Devney Perry

Posted October 18, 2021 by Casee in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Tin Queen by Devney PerryReviewer: Casee
Tin Queen by Devney Perry
Narrator: Lucy Rivers, Jason Clarke
Series: Tin Gypsy #6
Also in this series: Gypsy King
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: August 31, 2021
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: Alternating First
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 351
Length: 9 hours and 9 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
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four-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

No promises. No expectations. No names. That’s what Emmett Stone agreed to with the woman who caught his eye two months ago. After years of drama following the end of his motorcycle club, a no-strings fling with a mystery woman is exactly what he needs. Except as they find themselves together more and more, it’s impossible for him to keep his feelings at bay. She’s clever and sassy. She’s gracious and kind. She loves riding on the back of his bike every Saturday afternoon and lazing in his bed every Sunday morning. She’s the perfect woman.
Except she’s Nova Talbot, the daughter of his archenemy—the man who murdered his father.
Her identity will cost her the man who’s captured her heart unless she can convince Emmett her feelings are true.
Before he learns the reason she proposed their fling in the first place.

Tin Queen is the sixth and final book in Devney Perry’s Tin Gypsy series. This book brings the Tin Gypsies full circle and they have to decide if they want to hold onto the past or look forward to the future.

The thing that Nova Talbot wants most in life is for her father to be proud of her. She has done everything he’s ever asked for her. Now she’s volunteering to avenge her brother. Her plan is easy. She’s going to get her way into Emmett Stone’s bed, then she’s going to ruin him. That doesn’t go according to plan. What Nova thought about keeping her feelings separate from her body, it all went up in smoke the night she was first in Emmett’s bed. Emmett is nothing like she thought he would be. Nova knows he is special but that is not going sway her from her plan.

Emmett has never met anyone like her. What started out as a no-names, no-talking fling ended up turning into a need that couldn’t be denied. When he wasn’t with her, he thought about her. When he was with her, he had never felt as content. Emmett knows that they still have to worry about the Warriors, the rival club they were at war with. Still, he finds himself reluctant to run plates and dig into her life. That ends up being a mistake in a big way.

Nova’s internal struggle was real and very raw. Her father had always been her hero. She’d known that he wasn’t innocent; that he killed people even. But that didn’t change her undying devotion and loyalty to him. All Nova has wanted since her brother was killed by a Tin Gypsy was revenge. She wanted to put them all in jail. She thought she could and would do anything to do so, but that changes each day as she gets to really know Emmett.

When it all hits the fan it is horrible. A nightmare. Both Emmett and Nova have to decide if it’s worth it to face to the future or if they should say goodbye. Emmett damn near broke my heart when he said this.

“I can’t do this.”

I truly felt the devastation coming off the pages. It was heartbreaking and it was horrible. Their love was tangible, but neither of them know if they could let go of the past; let go of the family they both lost. When they did come together in the end? It was also desperate. But it was desperation to love, desperation to hope. It was just beautiful.

I’m really happy about how this series ended. Although I would rather have an open ended Tin Gypsy series, I respect Devney Perry for knowing when it’s time to end it. That doesn’t happen much anymore these days.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Tin Gypsy

four-half-stars


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Sunday Spotlight: Dinner on Primrose Hill by Jodi Thomas

Posted October 17, 2021 by Holly in Features, Giveaways | 7 Comments

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we began in 2016. This year we’re spotlighting our favorite books, old and new. We’ll be raving about the books we love and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

Sunday Spotlight: Dinner on Primrose Hill by Jodi ThomasDinner on Primrose Hill by Jodi Thomas
Series: Honey Creek #3
Publisher: Kensington, Zebra
Publication Date: October 26, 2021
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 336
Add It: Goodreads
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The delightful and touching new novel from the bestselling author of dozens of treasured romances. Return to the picturesque Texas town of Honey Creek—a place where friendship and warm welcomes can be relied on, and love always finds a way…

Benjamin Monroe is pretty sure how his life will play out. He’ll continue teaching chemistry in his small college, and spend his free time biking through the valley. Eventually, he’ll retire to putter around in his garden and greenhouse.
His colleague, Virginia Clark, is not one for routines. She’s chatty, spontaneous, and bubbly, and before Benjamin realizes what happened, she’s talked him into collaborating on a research project—studying the mating habits of college students. Virginia knows her desire to work with Benjamin is motivated by more than the potential prize money . . . and hopes he might not be quite as indifferent as he seems to be.

Ketch Kincaid, one of Benjamin’s star students, returned to college after serving in the army. He needs something to get his mind off his recent breakup and collecting research data might do it. And there’s another distraction on the horizon—a woman who looks like she, too, knows about heartache.

Soon enough, their project, “The Chemistry of Mating,” is gaining notoriety. Friends, neighbors . . . the whole town has become involved. But no matter what the data determines, one conclusion seems inescapable: love follows its own rules . . .

Excerpt

Dr. Benjamin Monroe folded his notes and placed them in the worn leather briefcase he’d carried since graduate school. His lecture room at Clifton College was empty now. Peaceful. He always liked the stillness after class. He’d done his job, and he took pride in that.

As he often did, he turned to the long, narrow windows behind his podium and looked out over his hometown. From the third floor he could see east all the way to the river and north to where the land rose in rolling hills. There was a balance here that calmed his soul. A wide valley that nestled three small towns, but his town, Clifton Bend, was the best because the college rested in its center.

Benjamin hadn’t missed a class in twelve years. At forty-two he always came on time and well prepared. Routine ruled his life. He liked working with his dad on their farm every weekend and loved biking through the valley on sunny afternoons. The exercise kept him lean and tanned, just as his work kept him sharp.

What he didn’t like was spring break. It interrupted his routine. A worthless holiday, but he’d help his father on their little farm and manage to keep busy.

“Dr. Monroe?” A nervous, high-pitched voice bombarded his thoughts. “May I speak to you about something? It’s important.”

A creature with auburn hair, glasses too big for her face, and huge blue eyes leaned around the door. Professor Virginia Clark.

He plowed his long fingers through his straight, mud-colored hair. If teachers were allowed a nemesis, Miss Clark, the biology instructor, would be his. As far as he was concerned, all they had in common was age.

Benjamin was tempted to say, “No, you can’t speak to me,” but that would be unprofessional.

To her credit, Miss Virginia Clark was bubbly on a down day. Her voice was too high, her manner of dress was in no way appropriate, and her legs were too short. On a good day she was exuberant and misguidedly thought they were not only colleagues but friends.

He’d always hated bubbly people; they made him nervous. But she taught two doors down in the biology lab and officed next to him. Some days he swore he could hear her laughing or running around her tiny workplace like a squirrel in a box.

Right now, she was charging toward his podium like Grant taking Richmond. Too late to say no or run, so all he could do was watch her approach.

Another observation—professors should never bounce.

Miss Clark bounced. She was a bit on the chubby side; a head shorter than he was, and the white lab coat did not conceal her curves. Her corkscrew hair seemed to be dancing to a hard rock beat, and her breasts . . . well never mind them. Unprofessional, he thought as he watched her coming down the steps row by row, breasts moving to their own beat.

“I need your help, Dr. Monroe.” She stopped one foot too close to him.

He fought the urge to step back.

“Of course, Miss Clark, I’m at your service,” he offered. Maybe she needed a ride or she was locked out of her office, again. He could make time to be kind. After all, they were colleagues.

“I’d be happy to help any way I can.”

“Good. I was afraid you’d say no. It’s a great opportunity and we can split the work and the money.”

Benjamin raised an eyebrow. “What work?”

“My research paper entry for the Westwin Research Journal has been approved as one of five finalists. The winner’s findings will be published in the journal as well as winning the ten-thousand-dollar prize.” She smiled. “Just think, we’ll be famous. Last year’s subject was how aging relates to location. The winner was interviewed on the Today show.”

She was bouncing again. This time with excitement. “I might finally get to go to New York City. I’ve always dreamed of seeing plays and walking through Central Park. They say you can hear the heartbeat of the whole world in the streets of New York.”

Benjamin fell into her pipe dream for a second. “If I had money to blow, I’d go to Paris and see Marie Curie’s office and lab. I’ve read every book about her dedication, her work, her life. Imagine walking the streets she walked.”

He didn’t mention that he’d also find his mother, if she was still alive. She’d left him when he was four years old, saying she must paint in Paris for a few months, but she never came back.

He had only one question for her. Was the life she’d given him up for worth it?

Miss Clark frowned at him as if measuring his sanity. “Paris, really Benjamin, sometimes you surprise me.”

When he frowned at the use of his first name, she sighed, obviously reading his thoughts.

“Dr. Monroe,” she corrected. “We could split the research and the writing. I’ve already obtained the president’s approval for a small survey. All we have is a month to get this done, but we’ve got spring break to kick off our project with a bang.”

He nodded slowly, not willing to jump in, but willing to listen. “What is our topic of research?”

Blushing, she added, “Redefining sexual attractions in today’s world.”

Benjamin straightened slightly.

Miss Clark giggled. “We could call it, ‘The Chemistry of Mating.’”

He swallowed hard as she turned and bounced out of the room.

For a few moments, Benjamin forgot to breathe. Calamity had blown in on a tornado with red hair.

The only good news. Spring break wasn’t going to be boring.

Honey Creek

Giveaway Alert

We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

Sunday Spotlight: October 2021

Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About Jodi Thomas

Author Photo

With millions of books in print, Jodi Thomas is both a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over 50 novels and countless short story collections. Her stories travel through the past and present days of Texas and draw readers from around the world.

In July 2006, Jodi was the 11th writer to be inducted into the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame. With five RITA’s to her credit, along with National Readers’ Choice Awards and Booksellers’ Best Awards, Thomas has proven her skill as a master storyteller.

Honored in 2002 as a Distinguished Alumni by Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, Thomas also served as Writer in Residence at West Texas A&M University in Canyon, Texas.

When not working on a novel or inspiring students to pursue a writing career, Thomas enjoys traveling, renovating a historic home, and “checking on” two grown sons and four grandchildren.


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Review: Eli by Jessica Gadziala

Posted October 13, 2021 by Casee in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Eli by Jessica GadzialaReviewer: Casee
Eli by Jessica Gadziala
Series: Mallick Brothers #4
Also in this series: Shane, Ryan
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: August 31, 2017
Format: eBook
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Point-of-View: Alternating First
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 232
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
five-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Six years on the inside gave a man a lot of time to think. And a lot of time to plan. When I got out, I was determined for things to go a different way. I never wanted to lose control and rage out again.
The only way to accomplish that, though, was to shut it all down. Complete disconnect.
That meant no family, no friends, no links to anything attached to the man I was before.
Of course the problem was, I never factored HER into my plans. And try as I might, I couldn’t find a way to shut it down, to disconnect from her.
I had a sneaking suspicion she was going to take all my carefully constructed plans and toss them out the window, was going to force me to face up the demons inside and confront the ghosts from my past.
Those ghosts? They wore the faces of my family.
And a confrontation with them, yeah, I had a feeling it was going to show me that I had spent six years taking action on beliefs about the demons inside. Demons that had never actually existed in the first place…

This book was my absolute favorite in the Mallick Brothers series. Which says a lot because the first four books were really well written & I was completely hooked when I was reading them. Eli continues Eli Mallick’s story. At the end of Mark, Eli was arrested for assault in front of Autumn. When he was taken away, Autumn couldn’t leave his ugly dog at the pound. She was sure that no one would want him. He was so sad when his owner was taken away that Autumn decided to take him.

Fast forward…Autumn found out who the man with the dog was. Once she tracked him down, she wrote him a letter to let him know that she had Coop & enclosed a picture. Eli didn’t respond. A few years later Autumn sent a picture of Coop in his Halloween costume. After that they communicated sporadically. Although it wasn’t very often, Autumn found herself really drawn to Eli & she wasn’t sure why. She didn’t know him. She didn’t know his family. She didn’t know his circumstances. All she knew was that he assaulted a man that almost killed his wife then got railroaded because said man had a powerful father that pulled strings to get Eli convicted.

For the six years that he was behind bars, Eli made a decision to shut out his emotions. He was determined to get his rage fits under control. Which meant cutting off his family. When he felt real emotions, he couldn’t stay away. Eli doesn’t want back into the family business. He wants to continue his art & get to know Autumn. He doesn’t know why he’s so drawn to her, but he can’t turn his emotions off when it comes to her.

Eli’s situation was just heartbreaking. He was never meant to be an enforcer for the family’s loanshark business, but that’s what happened. When all else failed, Eli was sent to collect the debt that was owed to his family. He would rage out though he always had one of his brothers there to pull him back. What was so sad was that he was such a gentle soul. The fact that he would rage out, he had no outlet to control it except for the physical.

Autumn was such a great heroine. You could tell that she loved Eli from the moment he got out of prison though she hadn’t admitted it to herself. There was something about her that draws him & makes Eli feel that he needs her in his life. With Autumn he has an outlet from the rage that comes over him, in the form of sex. The first time Eli raged out after getting out of prison was after he saw one of his brothers. Just heartbreaking.

Eventually the family reunited and holy shit, but I was an emotional mess. His poor mother. Still, I thought they brought it on themselves by forcing Eli to be something he was never meant to be. Violent. The epilogue of this book just gutted me. If I was something that cried while reading, this one would have made me cry. I am so happy with the Mallick Brothers series & I can’t wait to read Gadziala’s other books.

Rating: 4.75 out of 5.

Mallick Brothers

five-stars


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Review: Rise by Cassandra Robbins

Posted October 4, 2021 by Casee in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Rise by Cassandra RobbinsReviewer: Casee
Rise by Cassandra Robbins
Series: Rock God #1
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: September 9, 2021
Format: eBook
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Point-of-View: Alternating First Person
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 357
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Casee's 2021 Goodreads Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-half-stars
Series Rating: five-stars

USA Today bestselling author Cassandra Robbins returns with a scorching second chance, age-gap love story about a Rock God and his muse.
I know what I want.

So when opportunity knocked, I took it. I grabbed my shot, willing to do anything to make it happen.
From the beginning, I knew I was destined to be with the six-foot-four, bourbon-eyed Rock God. Only back in the early days he wasn’t a god.
Rhys Granger was my brother’s friend, the boy next door who wrote verses and played his guitar in our garage. He was talented. Exciting. Damaged. The kind of guy who made all the girls cry…
Except for me. I thought I was special. Turns out I’m not.
And now… I despise him.
He’s the lead singer of the Stuffed Muffins, one of the biggest bands in the world, with dark hair, full lips, and a body to die for.
Unfortunately, he’s a dick.
Not that I care anymore. I have my own career. I’m successful in my own right. So, when offered another once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I turn it down.
But the universe has other plans, and I’m forced back into the savagely glamorous world of rock ‘n’ roll. Thrust into battling his seductive smile, his dangerous kisses, and my own addictive needs.
He might be a Rock God, but he’s also a man. And I’m the woman he never saw coming.
----
Get your VIP pass to the hottest world tour this year. Rise is a complete standalone in the Rock God series. Stage dive straight into Rhys and Gia’s uncontrollable attraction. With appearances from beloved past characters, this is my most scorching book yet.
*Not responsible for broken or spontaneous combustion of your e-reader.*

You’re not the boss of me, and I’ll never be like those girls, crying because you don’t love them. When I grow up, I know you’re gonna love me the best,” she announces, spins around, and walks back to the girls.

Gia was seven when she told Rhys she was going to marry him. He was seventeen, but age never mattered to her. Now she’s eighteen and she has a single-minded determination to show Rhys that they are made for each other. In her wildest dreams she could never imagine that he wouldn’t recognize her when he saw her. It works to her advantage in this case as she realizes that Rhys would never agree to be with her if he knew who she was. Now that they’ve been together, Gia is going to do everything to show Rhys that they’re meant to be together.

When Rhys figures out who Gia is after the night they spent together, he’s pretty much dumbfounded. The seven year old girl that was such a nuisance. The woman she has become is someone that Rhys doesn’t want to let go. He doesn’t care about her brother wanting to kill him; he will do anything to keep his muse and the woman that has come to mean everything to him in such a short amount of time.

Gia wasn’t ready for Rhys when she was eighteen. I believe that she needed to grow up a little. She was very much like an eighteen year old with her feelings about Rhys and what he should & should not be doing. She wasn’t ready for the Rock God lifestyle & it really showed. When they run into each other again about ten years later, she’s a woman, not the naive girl she once was.

The book had all the feels. You could feel the desperation that these two felt toward each other. It was an obsession; it was a love that was timeless. It was messy and chaotic. It was something that would be a difficult situation for any eighteen year old to be in. I think it was necessary for her to grow up before she & Rhys could be together. I really loved this book.

Rating 4.25 out of 5.

Rock God

four-half-stars


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Sunday Spotlight: Rise by Cassandra Robbins

Posted October 3, 2021 by Casee in Features, Giveaways | 3 Comments

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we began in 2016. This year we’re spotlighting our favorite books, old and new. We’ll be raving about the books we love and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

Sunday Spotlight: Rise by Cassandra RobbinsRise by Cassandra Robbins
Series: Rock God #1
Also in this series: Rise
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: September 9, 2021
Point-of-View: Alternating First Person
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 357
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Series Rating: five-stars

USA Today bestselling author Cassandra Robbins returns with a scorching second chance, age-gap love story about a Rock God and his muse.
I know what I want.

So when opportunity knocked, I took it. I grabbed my shot, willing to do anything to make it happen.
From the beginning, I knew I was destined to be with the six-foot-four, bourbon-eyed Rock God. Only back in the early days he wasn’t a god.
Rhys Granger was my brother’s friend, the boy next door who wrote verses and played his guitar in our garage. He was talented. Exciting. Damaged. The kind of guy who made all the girls cry…
Except for me. I thought I was special. Turns out I’m not.
And now… I despise him.
He’s the lead singer of the Stuffed Muffins, one of the biggest bands in the world, with dark hair, full lips, and a body to die for.
Unfortunately, he’s a dick.
Not that I care anymore. I have my own career. I’m successful in my own right. So, when offered another once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I turn it down.
But the universe has other plans, and I’m forced back into the savagely glamorous world of rock ‘n’ roll. Thrust into battling his seductive smile, his dangerous kisses, and my own addictive needs.
He might be a Rock God, but he’s also a man. And I’m the woman he never saw coming.
----
Get your VIP pass to the hottest world tour this year. Rise is a complete standalone in the Rock God series. Stage dive straight into Rhys and Gia’s uncontrollable attraction. With appearances from beloved past characters, this is my most scorching book yet.
*Not responsible for broken or spontaneous combustion of your e-reader.*

Excerpt

I lift my head but all I see are amber-colored eyes.

I blink at him as he lowers his lips to mine. It’s slow and calm, almost as if we’re still in our own bubble. I cling to his T-shirt and our tongues dance together. My head falls back and I let him take me away. If I live to be a hundred, I will always remember this moment when we soared above the world, Rhys and I.

He lifts his head, his eyes caressing mine. “You feel my heart?”

I nod. “I love it,” I say, not even caring what I say or do. Reality can slap me awake when we land, but right now I’m right where I need to be.

He pulls me in tight and I listen to his heart. I survived the panic attack but the real question is can I survive him?

I should pull away.

He will hurt me again.

“It beats for you,” he whispers.

I can’t look at him. He’ll see all of me right now and that can’t happen. I burrow my nose in his neck while he strokes my hair. When the noise of the jet returns, he lowers the seat, yet all I hear is the slowing of his heartbeat. I sense his body relaxing, which is a little surprising. Rhys is always on the go, his mind rarely at rest. Even when he was young he never really rested.

You feel my heart? It beats for you.

Rock God

Giveaway Alert

We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

Sunday Spotlight: October 2021

Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!


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