BLOG TOUR ~ INSATIABLE by Melanie Harlow

After all those years of being just friends, suddenly we’re insatiable.

Today we are thrilled to be on tour with USA Today bestselling author Melanie Harlow’s all-new irresistible friends-to-lovers
stand-alone romance, INSATIABLE

Insatiable AMAZON

I didn’t mean to see him naked–it was an accident.

It had to be, right?

Because Noah McCormick and I have never been anything more than friends. In all the years I’ve known him, he’s never once laid a finger on me. And even though he was a cute lifeguard at 16 and a hotter-than-hell sheriff’s deputy at 34, he’s always been that protective guy I could trust to keep his hands to himself. I never wanted to mess with that.

Until I walked in on him getting out of the shower and saw his hard, muscular body totally bare and dripping wet. At that moment I never wanted to mess with anything so badly in my entire life.

I should have covered my eyes. Said I was sorry. At the very least, I could have handed him a towel.

After all, I was only in town for a few days, and he was just doing me a favor by escorting me to my sister’s wedding. It wasn’t a real date.

But I didn’t apologize. And he didn’t cover up.

(Talk about a hot mess.)

After all those years of being just friends, suddenly we’re insatiable.

He’s made it clear he’s not interested in romance. Which is fine with me because

I’ve got a plane ticket back to my real life at the end of the week.

It’s all in fun…or is it?

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Reviewed by Anna on behalf of KFF

Insatiable is the third book in the Cloverleigh Farms series but can be read as a standalone. This friends-to-lovers romance will thrill you to bits. Meg and Noah’s story will make you swoon and sweep you off your feet.

Noah McCormick is the deputy sheriff of a small town in Michigan. Loyal, protective and alpha to the core, his main goal is to be there for his family especially his twin brother Asher who was born with cerebral palsy. Noah’s life is all about his job and family so a serious relationship is not on his agenda, he is definitely a confirmed bachelor. When Meg comes home to attend her sister’s wedding, she meets up with Noah again and unfamiliar new feelings surface when they got together.

Meg Sawyer is a successful lawyer in DC and her family own Cloverleigh Farms. She was the one who went away to have a career outside their small town. Career-driven and a workaholic her relationships always end up being a failure. Now that she gets to meet Noah again after a long time the gangly teenager is now a hot police officer and the way she looks at him has also changed. Is it time for both of them to shift the boundaries?

Told in alternating points of view, Meg and Noah’s story is about family and loyalty. And when this pair’s friendship morphed into friends-with-benefits, the outcome is sort of predictable. Noah’s stubborn attitude towards a lasting commitment and his reasons why he doesn’t want to be in a serious relationship frustrated me. It takes another family member to give him that nudge, making him think deeper about his choices in life. Whilst Noah is the stubborn alpha, Meg is a strong independent woman willing to take that first step and risk her heart and this is why I love her character so much. This book was a quick read for me simply because I couldn’t put it down. No over-the-top drama and third parties involved just pure entertainment.

For those who haven’t read the previous books in the series, the other Sawyer sisters play significant roles in this couple’s story. The secondary characters are an interesting mix of lovable personas and are as entertaining as the main ones. A dirty-talking cop, a smart and sexy lawyer, this friends-to-lovers romance will make you sigh and swoon. I really enjoyed reading this series and I cannot wait to read the next one. Are we going to read about Sylvia’s story next? I certainly hope so.

EXCERPT

© 2019 Melanie Harlow
All rights reserved.

 
Sawyer?” I said in disbelief. Breaking into a huge grin, she started to run. 

I was still standing there in shock when she barreled into me, throwing her arms around my neck. She smelled fucking fantastic. Feminine, sweet, delectable. 

“What are you doing here?” I asked, trying to hug her back without getting sweat or paint on her. “I thought you didn’t get in until Thursday.”

“I changed my ticket.” She let go just enough to smile up at me impishly. “I’m glad to see you too.”

I laughed. “I’m glad to see you. You just surprised me is all.”

“That was my plan.” She stepped back, and I figured my odor was probably repulsing her. 

“I stink, sorry. I went for a run earlier and I never showered. Then I painted the garage.”

“I never mind the smell of sweat. It means hard work.” She brightened. “Will you run tomorrow? I’d love to go with you.

“Sure. We can run tomorrow. I’m off again.”

“Great! Although I’m probably way out of shape.” She made a face. “My work schedule is so crazy, I don’t run as much as I used to.”

“You look great,” I told her. And it was true—she did look great. Maybe not quite as skinny as the last time I’d seen her, but the added curves looked good on her. My eyes wandered without my brain’s permission to her slightly fuller chest and rounder hips. Quickly, I attempted to look at her face again, but then my gaze lingered on her mouth. I remembered what it had looked like the other night in my fantasy as she’d wrapped her lips around my cock and moaned like it was the best thing she’d ever tasted. 

My dick twitched beneath my running shorts, and I cleared my throat. “You’ve got a favorite murder? Is there something I need to know?”

She glanced down at her shirt and smiled. “It’s a podcast about true crime. I’m addicted.”

“Never heard of it.”

A sound of exasperation escaped her. “You live under a rock! I can’t believe you’re still not on social media.”

“Yes, you can.”

“Okay, I can, but it makes it really hard to stalk you.” 

I shook my head. “People like you are exactly why I don’t want to be on social media.”

She hit me on the shoulder. “I’m kidding! I just want to keep up with your life. I miss you.”

“So come home more often. Talk to my face.”

She grinned. “I do like seeing your face. Want to go grab a beer? Maybe some food?”

“Sure.”

 



Harlow Headshot ColorMEET MELANIE

Melanie Harlow likes her martinis dry, her heels high, and her history with the naughty bits left in. When she’s not writing or reading, she gets her kicks from TV series like VEEP, Game of Thrones, Succession, and Homeland. She occasionally runs three miles, but only so she can have more gin and steak.

Melanie is the author of the ONE & ONLY series, the AFTER WE FALL series, the HAPPY CRAZY LOVE series, the FRENCHED series, and the sexy historical SPEAK EASY duet, set in the 1920s. She lifts her glass to romance readers and writers from her home near Detroit, MI, where she lives with her husband, two daughters, and pet rabbit.

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BLOG TOUR ~ BETWEEN NOW AND HEARTBREAK by Dylan Allen

Today we are on tour with BETWEEN NOW AND HEARTBREAK, part two in the binge-worthy sexy and compelling Forever Trilogy by Dylan Allen

He’s searching for the truth.

I’m living a lie. 

And as much as we want to, 

we can’t stay away from each other.

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Falling for Carter nearly cost me everything.

To save myself I made a deal with the devil.

Now, I’ve got a second chance and more to lose than ever.

So when he makes it clear he wants me back,

I vow not to make the same mistake twice.

Carter has learned his lesson, too.

He’s done making promises.

This time, he’s staking his claim.

He already owns a piece of my heart,

But he won’t settle for less than all of me.

And by the time his seduction is done, I’ll want to give it to him.

But I made promises I have to keep.

And the devil I owe has come to collect his due.

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EXCERPT

© 2019 Dylan Allen
All rights reserved.

 
“I’m going to kiss you, now,” Carter says it like he’s giving a dire warning. 

“My goodness, you’re presumptuous,” I sigh, but don’t pull away. I couldn’t. His mouth is so close. That song was so beautiful and catchy. God, talk about talent.  

“Fortune is on my side tonight. So, I’m going for broke. Let me kiss you,” his voice is rumble. 

I’m giddy with whatever is happening, but… “Carter you said we’d just be friends.”  I lick my lower lip and his eyes dart to it and he moves closer to me. His big hands move so that he’s cupping head. 

“No, you said. I told you it was a terrible idea.” His voice is all  seduction and mischief. A million humming birds flutter in my chest at the perfectly wicked smile he’s wearing as he brings his face toward mine. 

His eyes glitter green hued promises that make heat curl in my belly, and alarm bells ring in my head. 

“What are—” 

His lips press softly to mine and cut off my words. My breath catches in my throat and my eyes flutter shut at the touch. His lips are soft, warm and his kiss is as light as gossamer. He starts to pull away and before I can think, I’ve slid a hand into his thick soft hair and I’m pulling his mouth back to mine. He chuckles before he covers my lips with his, shoves a hand into my hair and slides his tongue into my mouth. 

And holy God, does it feel good. His hands are everywhere, running down my back, cupping my ass, pushing into the hot space between my legs through the fabric. His fingers find the heat and wet that is building and spilling from me. Through the cotton gusset of my panties, his fingers are blunt and hard and demanding and so good. 

I want him. I want him. I want him.

I want everything so much I can’t breathe.

I’m desperate to feel him where I need him. 

There’s an ache that started blooming the night I met that only he has been able to soothe. 

I groan and grind into his fingers until I feel just a taste of what I know is to come. 

“Please,” I whimper and press down. 

Suddenly he breaks our kiss, and pulls his hand away from me  with a curse. and presses his forehead to mine. I keep my eyes closed while I try to catch my breath and still my thundering heart. 

“I’m leaving, Beth. It’s time for me to go back home.”
 


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Reviewed by Anna on behalf of KFF

This is book two of the Forever Trilogy and if you haven’t read the first book (Between Now and Forever), I strongly suggest that you read that one first.

Whilst book one ended with Carter finding out the identity of his biological brother, book two continues with Beth’s “deal” with Duke and their impending engagement. I must say that this tale had me on tenterhooks when Carter finds his way back to Beth and their hot trysts gave me mini heart attacks thinking of the what-ifs. The character development of Beth is a pleasure to read: from being a pawn to her father’s ambitions, toeing the line, changing her looks and finally finding the courage to tell the world what she wants but at what cost though?

“What’s romantic is knowing the odds are stacked against you and taking a chance on something impossible, anyway. Because it’s what you want more than anything else. You can tell it’s what’s meant for you.”

There is no denying Beth and Carter’s special connection since book one but their attraction for each other bears a lot of repercussions. Despite the emotional upheaval, they both experienced their love for each. Although it’s strong, is it enough to overcome Beth’s family duties? The biggest twist in the last part of this story was enough to knock me off my chair. Wow, I didn’t see that one coming! I love the secondary characters, the antagonists are sometimes too evil to the point of becoming a caricature, but this is why this trilogy is so riveting for me.

Dina, Beth’s best friend, gives her the balance she needs and the sage advice she imparts gives Beth the impetus to change the direction in her life. We all need a Dina in our life! The author’s note tells her readers to go back to the prologue in Between Now and Forever to remind us that there is a happy ending to Beth and Carter’s story. However, I found it hard to think how the heck the author could get these lovers out of their predicament in Between Now and Heartbreak. This I would like to find out in Between Now and Always and I’m sure Ms. Allen will give us more twists and turns than a London bendy bus!

Start the series with BETWEEN NOW AND FOREVER, available in KU today!

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Pre-order the stunning conclusion, BETWEEN NOW AND ALWAYS, releasing 8th December!

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About Dylan Allen

Dylan Allen is a Texas girl with a serious case of wanderlust.

A self-proclaimed happily ever junkie, she loves creating stories where her characters chase their own happy endings.

When she isn’t writing or reading, eating or cooking, she and her family are planning their next adventure.

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RELEASE BLAST ~ IN THE LIGHT OF THE DAY by K.A. Graham

Today we are delighted to be sharing K.A. Graham’s all-new psychological dark romance, IN THE LIGHT OF THE DAY


There’s darkness in all of us.

Micah
I’m a nobody. An outcast. A shadow. I never aligned with the jocks and their fake barbie girlfriends, not that I wanted to. Being invisible worked for me until he showed up.

He showed me a path I never intended to walk, and I slid into his life easily. Too easily.  Now that the devil has embraced me, I crave the heat of his flames.

Quinn
She doesn’t think I see her. She’s wrong. She’s all I see. My dark angel. We’re more alike than she could ever imagine. Soon I will make her mine.

I was always good at playing the part of the jock that everyone worships. In reality, I’m the devil with no remorse. It’s time to free my soul and rid myself of the rodents.

Download your copy for only $0.99 or read in Kindle Unlimited today!

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Meet K.A. Graham

K.A. Graham grew up in a small town in Oregon. Through the years, her love for writing and poetry, turned into something she had only dreamt of. Writing her own book. She’s faced many obstacles in her life, but the love and devotion of her parents, have always kept her grounded.

She is an avid reader, blogger and does PA work for a few authors, which keeps her quite busy. Hard rock music lover and horror movie buff, with a love and appreciation for tattoos. Her addictions include copious amounts of caffeine, Chinese food and Haribos candy.

#EmbraceTheLove #ForgetTheHate

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Through the Eyes of Madness co-written with Barb Shuler is available in Kindle Unlimited

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The Sparrow & The Raven

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Escape The Night: The Sparrow and The Raven novella is available in Kindle Unlimited

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RELEASE BOOST ~ THE ITALIAN by T L Swan

Today we are delighted to be bringing you the release boost for  T L Swan’s brand new contemporary romance, THE ITALIAN


They say there are three things you should do at least once in your life:

Dance like nobody’s watching.
Travel the world.
And fall hopelessly in love.

I aimed to do all three.

I went to Italy to find myself.
But he found me.

It was like a story book, our eyes met across a crowded room.
He asked me if I needed help reading the menu.
We ate, we laughed, we danced, and I fell.
Unfortunately, things didn’t go to plan, and we parted ways.

Two years later, our eyes meet across a room again.
Only this time I was on a date with another man.
He went crazy in a jealous fit.

But the man I met then is different now.
He’s colder, harder, and officially one of the most powerful men in Italy.
Dare I say it, even more enticing.

But if you dance with the devil, you get burnt.

And the fires in Italy are scalding hot.

THE ITALIAN is live and available in Kindle Unlimited

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Meet T L Swan

Originally from Sydney, Tee Swan now resides in a dreamy beachside town on the South Coast of Australia with her hunk of a hubby, their three children and a menagerie of spoilt pets.

She loves Margaritas, Chocolate and a swoony good book with a strong storyline. With a background in Mental Health, Tee writes characters that you want be friends with, strong alphas to fall in love with and witty women you want to be.

When she is not writing you will find her in a cafe drinking coffee and eating cake.

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Books by T L Swan

Stanton Adore
Stanton Unconditional
Stanton Completely
Stanton Bliss
Find Me Alastar
Play Along
Dr. Stanton
Dr. Stantons The Epilogue
Marx Girl
Mr. Masters
Gym Junkie
Mr. Spencer
The Stopover

 

BLOG TOUR ~ RUIN (Slay Quartet #2) by Laurelin Paige

Today we are so excited to be on tour with New York Times bestselling author Laurelin Paige’s second book in the Slay Quartet, RUIN

With her heart literally in his hands, Celia will have to try and bargain with a devil.

Edward Fasbender is my captor.

Trapped on this island he owns everything on–including, it seems, me.

He told me he would break me, but I thought he meant in the bedroom. It turns out Edward is playing a completely different game.

And he won’t stop until he’s ruined me.

Slay Two: Ruin is the second book in the Slay Quartet. Slay One: Rivalry should be read first.

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Reviewed by Emma-Louise on behalf of KFF

Cruel and wicked, Edward Fasbender gave Celia an offer she couldn’t pass up. Now, well now she’s living with the consequences.

This writer is an enigma, she can weave in and out of genres easily. Soppy. Hard. Rough. Dark. Edgy. You name it she can do it. This book is one of her best to date.

Edward is so unlike others I have experienced. And an experience he is. Revenge is a dish best served cold. And his dish is years old. He’s waited, planned, and acted; a long game like no other.
Celia is in his crosshairs. Is she all that he believes or is she an onion?

I was so very torn with this one. I didn’t know if I wanted to smack Edward or shake his hand. His sister, on the other hand, I would have gladly with a smile on my face strangled the woman until she turned blue. Smurf blue would be best. Camilla is evil where her brother is decisive and cunning.

Celia has many secrets. Secrets we never discovered in the Fixed books. To me, I believed her a bad job best left to while away her days in loneliness and darkness. Was I right? I can’t and won’t say.
At the beginning of Slay, I believed her to be a wolf in sheep’s clothing. A pariah who deserves all she got.

Round and round the reader goes. On a ride so unlike any I have seen. Highs. Lows. Lust. Depravity. All these and more are here for those who dare to witness the horrors. Give this series a go. You will not be disappointed.

EXCERPT

© 2019 Laurelin Paige
All rights reserved.

 
“I don’t know if this is going to work if it’s only about me. I need to feel like you want this too.” My heart tripped in my chest. Of all the vulnerable moments he’d pulled from me, that confession was one of the most raw.Instead of answering with words, he bent his head down and kissed me. It was slow, at first, his lips moving, not with caution, but with self-control. I sighed into it, opening my mouth for him, and his tongue slipped in, probing tenderly at first then more aggressively. His hand cupped my jaw, angling my face the way he wanted it while his other arm wrapped around my waist and pulled me flush against him where I was met with a very thick, very hard bulge.

“Does it feel like I don’t want this?” he asked, pulling back just far enough to speak.

“No. I can’t say that it does.” I wanted to say more, something that would make me feel less unguarded, something that would help me gain my footing.

But he was kissing me again, more eagerly than before, and the thoughts and doubts disappeared from my mind replaced by the captivating sensations of his teeth and tongue, nipping and licking along my lips, along my jaw, down my décolletage.

I was dizzy and disoriented when he finally pulled away so he could tug me toward the bedroom. After pushing the door open, he stepped aside for me to pass ahead of him. I walked in and gasped.

 


Haven’t started the Slay Quartet yet! Read RIVALRY today!

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Meet Laurelin

With millions of books sold worldwide, Laurelin Paige is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Bestselling Author. She is a sucker for a good romance and gets giddy anytime there’s kissing, much to the embarrassment of her three daughters. Her husband doesn’t seem to complain, however.

When she isn’t reading or writing sexy stories, she’s probably singing, watching Game of Thrones or Letterkenny, or dreaming of Michael Fassbender. She’s also a proud member of Mensa International though she doesn’t do anything with the organization except use it as material for her bio.

She is represented by Rebecca Friedman.

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BLOG TOUR ~ LONDON ROYAL by Nana Malone

Today we are thrilled to be on tour with book one of USA Today bestselling author Nana Malone’s all-new London Royal Duet,
LONDON ROYAL

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Rich.

Entitled.

Possessive pain in my ass.

I know exactly what I don’t want.

I escaped to London under the cover of night, never thinking I’d run smack into a man who would turn me inside out.

I had a plan. Simple, really.

Step one: Follow my dream, away from from the demons of my past.

Step two: Land on my own two feet, preferably far, far, away from the man who hurt me and broke my heart.

Step three: Live a little and avoid all men with dark secrets.

So far, I’m not doing so hot.

He’s a royal amongst peasants, and the last kind of trouble I need–a filthy rich alpha who can see straight into my soul. Our secrets hold us both captive.

Something tells me I’ll be powerless to stop his magnetic pull, especially when he tells me I’m going to be his, damn the consequences.

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EXCERPT

© 2019 Nina Malone
All rights reserved.

Abbie…

“I figured I’d try something different and ask you to dance.”

I whirled around and let out a small squeak of alarm. The muscles in my lower belly quivered, and my breath caught. My savior from earlier stood in front of me, looking like a cross between an angel of mercy and the devil incarnate. “We have to stop meeting like this,” I mumbled.

A smile tugged at the corners of his lips. “Well, there’s no rain at the moment, so we should be safe. I trust we were able to save your camera?”

Heat flooded my cheeks. “Yes. Thank you. Honestly that could have been ugly today. I’m indebted.”

“How about a dance, and we’ll call it even?”

A dance? With him? Pressed up against… “I, uh…”

“Now, I’m not as good as you are, so you’ll need to take it easy on me.” He outstretched his hand and waited for me to take it. He didn’t press or push, just stood there… waiting.

Jasper didn’t help me when he switched the track to a dancehall reggae song with a grooving beat.

Butterflies fluttered low in my belly. When was the last time I’d had butterflies? Unfortunately, with those butterflies also came fear. The fact was I didn’t know this guy. But, if he’d wanted to hurt you, he could have already. It’s just a dance.

I glanced down at his hand and placed my palm in his. Determined not to be nervous, I smiled up at him. “Hardly seems fair. You saved my life, and all you get is this dance.”

He drew me close, but not too close, keeping his hands at my waist. He waited patiently until I looped my arms around his neck. “It’s well worth it to me.” The low rumble in his chest as he spoke sent shivers coursing through my body.

As it turned out, he didn’t need any help dancing. He moved us easily in time to the seductive beat. I didn’t dare look around because I knew what I’d find—couples pressed so close that we might as well be naked and in bed. Dirty dancing was a requisite of dancehall music, but my partner kept a marginally safe distance between us, figuratively if not literally, because with every down swing of the base, our hips rocked into each other.

I swallowed hard, but then forced my gaze up to meet his. As soon as our eyes met, my heart rate kicked. His slate gray eyes, framed by dark lashes, stayed on mine. Nervously, I licked my lips. He stilled for just a second, causing me to lose my footing and bringing me flush against his body.

I froze, muscles tight. Touching wasn’t something I was used to or allowed easily. But with him, I didn’t want to be anywhere else. He smelled of mint and something crisp and woodsy, like he’d spent the afternoon outside on the water. I released my strangled breath and let my body relax into his. I felt, rather than heard, the low rumble in his throat as his chest vibrated against mine. His warmth enveloped me, and I could tune out everything but him. As if it were only the two of us on the edge of the dance floor.

There, in the dark, in the arms of a relative stranger, I felt safe.

His hands shifted on my waist as his thumbs traced my hip bones, and I forgot to breathe. Wobbly knees forced me to tighten my hold on him. As if responding to my body’s automatic softening, my eyes dipped to his lips.
What the hell am I doing? My brain tried desperately to take control of the situation, but I didn’t feel like listening. For the first time in longer than I cared to think about, I liked having someone’s hands on me. I wasn’t afraid. Instead, I craved it, that connection. My body hummed with vibrant sexual energy. An energy I hadn’t felt in six long years. There were nerves, but not from fear or trepidation. It felt good. Better than good. It made me remember how much I needed to be touched. Or rather touched by someone who could make me feel safe.

But just as the last of the tension ebbed out of my body, his thumbs pressed gently against my hip bones, moving me back several inches. He raised his head, and we stood like that for several seconds before I realized Jasper had switched the music. Oh, God. I’d been standing there with a total stranger, practically melting into him.

Heat rushed to my face. “I—”

He smiled, and I was too blinded to finish. Gently, his thumbs traced across my hip bones once more, and he let me go. “Thank you for the dance.” Then he turned around and walked away.

I spent several seconds staring after him. What the hell had just happened?

“Hey, there you are.” Faith’s voice broke me out of the fog. “Who was that you were dancing with?”

I stared into the crowd feeling empty. “I have no idea.”

 

 



Reviewed by Emma-Louise on behalf of KFF

Times are changing. Nomea cracks in two. How can the Chase brothers react to something that was never supposed to happen?

Lex was once a man with many skeletons. A man who had more secrets than Google or Microsoft. Hiding behind sleight of hand…well, that is until Abby falls into his arms, literally.

Having spent more years than she can fathom living her life for everyone else, Abby takes a drastic turn and heads off-script. Seeing as the script wasn’t created by her, altering her path was the best thing she could ever do.

Upon meeting Lex and Abby have chemistry. Chemistry that neither one of them knows what to do with. Blood is not always what keeps you safe. Blood doesn’t always look out for your best interest. Sometimes it’s those we choose that have our best interests at heart.

Once again, this wickedly awesome author does what I love to hate…leaving me on tenterhooks for the second instalment. Well blooming done Ms. Malone. You’re as crazy as you are brilliant.


Meet Nana

USA Today Bestselling Author, NANA MALONE’s love of all things romance and adventure started with a tattered romantic suspense she borrowed from her cousin on a sultry summer afternoon in Ghana at a precocious thirteen. She’s been in love with kick-butt heroines ever since.

With her overactive imagination, and channeling her inner Buffy, it was only a matter a time before she started creating her own characters. Waiting for her chance at a job as a ninja assassin, Nana, meantime works out her drama, passion and sass with fictional characters every bit as sassy and kick butt as she thinks she is.

The books in her series have been on multiple Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble bestseller lists as well as the iTunes Breakout Books list and most notably the USA Today Bestseller list.

Until that ninja job comes through, you’ll find Nana working hard on additional books for her series as well as other fun, sassy romances for characters that won’t leave her alone. And if she’s not working or hiding in the closet reading, she’s acting out scenes for her husband, daughter and puppy in sunny San Diego.

Want to hit me up? Just email me: nana@nanamaloneromance.com

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BLOG TOUR ~ BEFORE YOU by Marni Mann

Today we are delighted to be on tour with USA Today bestselling author Marni Mann’s all-new contemporary romance stand-alone, BEFORE YOU,
a novel which took our breath away!

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It was supposed to be a typical work trip. New York to San Francisco, window seat, exit row. Maybe a mimosa.

Then, seat 14B sat down. When our eyes met, the flight became anything but routine.

I could pinpoint the moments in my life where everything changed forever.

Meeting Jared on that flight was first.

Falling in love with him was second.

Discovering the secrets he kept was third.

Putting my broken self back together and forgetting what I learned would be difficult. Forgiving Jared would be impossible.

He said, before me, nothing mattered. But after him, nothing would ever be the same.

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Reviewed by Sharon Thérèse at KFF

Goodness me, what a gripping story. This is the first novel I’ve read by Mann and I have to say that the originality of the plot is nothing less than impressive. The writing technique is an interesting one and extremely well done. Even though Before You is narrated from a dual perspective in first-person, the third-person point of view in chapter breaks never confused me. It actually felt like I was reading a book inside a book, one flowing before the other which simply added to the angst. Why then did the author choose this style? I think by doing this, her modus operandi was to keep her readers guessing. If this was the case, its effectiveness worked to a tee. So, when both met in the middle and oh boy, the wait was excruciating, the outcome literally knocked me for six. I can honestly say I had no idea what was around the corner and that for me deserves praise. The cover and title couldn’t have been more fitting either…and you’ll see why. A book buddy of mine who’s a diehard fan of this author asked me what I thought of the story and as I didn’t want to let on, all I said was the cover holds the key.

“Where did you come from, Jared ?”

The curveball thrown into the story would cause a domino effect, reaching its climax at the very end! But before getting there, the reader is taken on a poignant journey overflowing with every imaginable emotion. A vivid description of what takes place isn’t for the faint-hearted. And it was of no surprise to me that it took Billie so long to get over. But through all the post-shock and trauma she has to bear, the mysterious Jared is there for her. The big question is why he singled her out when other people had been affected. Billie has a sweet soul. In her mid-20s, her vlogger business is booming, her love for cooking is shared with the world and demand for her opinion of the best chef’s delicacies keeps her busy. But things change and all Jared wants is for her to get back on her feet. But is this the only reason for his interest in her? You will see!

“Remember, Billie … go back to your life. I promise, it’ll help.”

I’m a glutton for the age-gap romance subgenre and Jared was everything I’d hoped for and more. Debonaire, considerate and gorgeous, him holding back on Billie I found perplexing in the sense that he wanted Billie more than any another woman he’d set eyes on, but couldn’t have her. Or could he? I never thought he was deceitful, it was just a matter of him just trying to do the right thing which seemed impossible. He’d been hurting for too long and knew that when the bomb eventually dropped, the woman he wasn’t supposed to fall in love with would be devastated. Gosh, when it all came out, I was crushed! It’s all tied up in the title; however, you’ve got to work out whose life it was before. His, hers or both.

‘Billie Paige was exactly what I wanted in a woman—intelligent, independent, and gorgeous. She just wasn’t a woman I could be with.’

Now for the other story! Andrew and Honey are the perfect couple who’d had their ups and downs but always looked for a solution together. Their love was so profound, their life so beautiful, it felt as if they were sharing their most personal thoughts with me. That being said, a happening made me incredibly sad. Yeah, it’s not a bad idea to have a stash of tissues nearby ‘cause if you’re like me and love a good cry, you’ll need them.

“You never have to worry. That’s why I’m here.”

Seeing as I love being in the kitchen, the food references were a welcome reprieve, easing the feeling of hopelessness that I had most of the time. And of course, Billie and Jared’s chemistry was also a pleasant distraction.

“You were looking at me like you were about to devour me … the same way you’re staring at me right now.”

Overcoming grief, learning how to forgive and faith in love are the ingredients Mann has used to make Before You such a magnificent read. Her fluid writing is phenomenal, her characters beyond exquisite and the dialogue is perfectly realistic. This is one story I will never forget. Bravo!


© 2019 Marni Mann
All rights reserved.

 
“Are you willing and able to help in the event of an emergency situation?” the flight attendant asked as she stood beside our row. She had appeared directly after the announcement that informed us that all of the passengers were now on board the plane to San Francisco and the pilots were doing their final preparations before Flight 88 pulled away from the gate.
“Yes,” I answered, and I should have gone back to the article on the housing market in lower Manhattan that I’d started when I was waiting to board. Instead, my eyes were on her.
The girl in seat 14A.
She had dark hair that went well past her shoulders, a patch of freckles under each of her eyes, and lips that were pouty and full. She wasn’t beautiful. She was exquisite.
And she had no idea at all.
In the forty-seven years I’d been alive, I’d learned something about women. There were those you couldn’t help but look at and those you just shouldn’t look at.
She was both.
That was rare.
“Yes,” she replied to the flight attendant, and then she looked at me.
Before all of the interruptions, she had asked why I was going to California. I finally answered, “Some work, some pleasure. And yourself?”
“Same.” Her eyelids narrowed. “Are you from Manhattan? I don’t detect an accent.”
I felt the paper in my hands and knew there was no way I could go back to it. Not yet at least, not with her fiery green gaze on me.
“When you’ve lived in New York for as long as I have, you tell people you’re from there. It’s easier.”
She laughed, and it caused me to keep staring at her. “I’ve been here a while, too, and I agree. Once New York becomes home, you seem to forget everywhere else you’ve lived.” She tucked some hair behind her ear. “Why is that?”
When I’d asked my assistant to book this flight, I hadn’t considered flying commercial would put me in a position for conversation, like the one she’d just started. I hadn’t thought much about the actual flight at all besides knowing I had to be on it.
But now that I was here, I had no idea what the fuck I was thinking.
I really shouldn’t be going to San Francisco at all.
I looked away from her to glance up ahead. The main door was closed, telling me it was too late to get off the plane. The only thing I could do at this point was get some air.
I excused myself, halfway to my feet, knowing we were minutes from leaving the gate and supposed to be in our seats, and I went down the aisle. “I’ll be quick,” I said to one of the flight attendants as she approached me, and I continued to the lavatory.
When I got inside, I locked the door behind me, guessing I had about thirty seconds before I heard a knock.
If I were in any other restroom, I would have washed my face, but I wasn’t going to do that with the water from a plane. What I needed from this tight, crammed space was to catch my breath.
Because all of it had been sucked out of me, and there wasn’t any air to be found in row fourteen.
 

 

Meet Marni

Best-selling Author Marni Mann knew she was going to be a writer since middle school. While other girls her age were daydreaming about teenage pop stars, Mann was fantasizing about penning her first novel. She crafts sexy, titillating stories that weave together her love of darkness, mystery, passion, and human emotion. A New Englander at heart, she now lives in Sarasota, Florida with her husband and their two dogs who subsequently have been characters in her books. When she’s not nose deep in her laptop working on her next novel, she’s scouring for chocolate, sipping wine, traveling to new locations, and devouring fabulous books.

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