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Friday, November 29, 2019

See Me by L. Simpson - Book Blast - Giveaway - Enter Daily!


Hi, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host L. Simpson and her new book, “See Me”!  For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win $10 Borough Bucks!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Laura and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!


See Me
by L. Simpson

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GENRE: Contemporary Romance

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BLURB:

Architect Ethan James's life is a mess. He's juggling being a single dad while fighting his infuriating ex who's trying to get full custody, while at the same time he's barely keeping his head above water in the job of his dreams. When he meets Mia Sullivan at a friend's engagement party, her bright spirit and kind heart shines a light into his life when he needs it most. With so much coming at him from all directions, he relies on Mia’s support but makes the heartbreaking mistake of not cherishing her love. Mia sees the writing on the wall and pulls back before her heart is shattered. Ethan can't lose the woman who makes his life complete, and shows her he is the man she needs him to be.

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EXCERPT ONE:

“Tell the others we’re going.”

She nodded, then winked. I grinned back as Ethan pulled me away. We hurried through the crowd, Ethan leading the way as he gripped my hand. His long legs were striding and I struggled to keep up.

“You in a hurry?” I asked.

He turned to me but didn’t smile. Instead, he kissed me, and my toes curled.

When he closed the door, he stood in front of me and pinned me to the car with his hips as he kissed me again. I could kiss this man forever. His strong, steady rhythm was demanding, and I willingly followed his lead. I put my hands in his hair, loving the soft feel of it between my fingers. Like on the dance floor, our kiss took on a life of its own.

When he buried his face in my neck and sucked right below my ear, I wondered if I would survive. “Ethan, honey, you’re killing me. I hope you have a lot of condoms.” He chuckled at my neck. “I’ll buy a box for next time.” It took me a moment before I realised he wasn’t moving anymore. “Ethan?” I whispered.

“Do you want a next time?” His voice was rough.

He shifted to look at me, and I didn’t know if it was a trick question. “Of course.” I smiled, although the protracted silence had my stomach starting to drop.

“Mia…”

Realization hit me like a slow-moving truck.

“I can only give you tonight.”

“Why?” I didn’t like the sound of my voice. It was small and fragile. He didn’t answer, but he looked haunted. He wasn’t going to answer me. “You only want tonight?” I still hoped I was reading this wrong.

When he nodded, I felt something break in me. Something I had pretended was strong and secure.

“I can’t do that,” I whispered. “Not with you.” My voice cracked under the weight of unshed tears. I couldn’t let it happen again. I wanted more.

“Mia…” He moved back, his hands still on my hips.

We were still close, but not.

“I don’t do well with one-night stands. There isn’t anything wrong with them, but I’m not built that way. Especially when I… care. I can’t turn my feelings off and I don’t think I should have to. I like you, Ethan, and I want to be with you like this and like we were today. I want more than sex, and I thought you wanted that, too.” By the end of my speech, any effort to hide my tears was futile.

“I can’t give you that.” He moved back, breaking our connection completely.

“You mean you won’t.”

“It isn’t like that.”

He reached for me, but I moved to the side.

“It’s exactly like that. I should’ve known better.” I righted my clothing and pushed off the car.
I’d made it two steps before he grabbed my elbow and turned me around.

“Trust me. I don’t want to hurt you.” His expression was full of pain and grief.

“Too late.” I pulled out of his hold.

This time, he let me.

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AUTHOR BIO:


As a girl growing up in Australia, Laura was lost in the world of Anne of Green Gables and Little Women. During high school, volleyball dominated her life. There had to be something positive about being 6’1” with red hair. Representing Australia from a young age she eventually took a scholarship at the University of Iowa. Living in America and being a full time athlete in a college town was an eye-opening experience and lots of fun (from what she can remember). #gohawkeyes

Returning from the States, her career took a different turn as she started working at the Red Cross and completed her Masters of Law in Human Rights. As one of the few non-lawyers in the class, her essays were far more floral than the rest, something that caused the discerning professors to shake their heads. Through working and studying, she realised there are other ways to win hearts and minds.

While she’s spent the last 14 years as an advocate against poverty and homelessness, the desire to change the world through storytelling has only got stronger. She now lives in the Alpine Valleys of North East Victoria, Australia with her husband, daughter, son, two dogs and seven chooks. When she’s not doing the whole mum thing, working at a homelessness agency, renovating her farmhouse, or trying to do laundry bleary-eyed at midnight, she is writing.

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CONNECT WITH LAURA:

Website:

Email:
simpson.laura@me.com

Facebook:

Twitter:

Instagram:

LinkedIn:

BookBub Author Page:

BookBub Book Page:

Goodreads Author Page:

Goodreads Book Page:

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BOOK BUY LINKS:

Amazon Kindle eBook:

Amazon Paperback:

Barnes and Noble NOOK eBook:

Barnes and Noble Paperback:

Kobo eBook:

Apple iBook eBook:

The Book Depository Paperback:

BAM! Books-A-Million Paperback:

Boroughs Publishing eBook:

Smashwords eBook:

Books2Read eBook:

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GIVEAWAY INFO:

Laura will be awarding $10 Borough Bucks to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.


**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

King Henry’s Choice by Emily-Jane Hills Orford - Book Tour - Book Review - Giveaway - Enter Daily!


Hello, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Emily-Jane Hills Orford and her new book, “King Henry’s Choice”!  For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Emily-Jane and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!


King Henry’s Choice
by Emily-Jane Hills Orford

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GENRE: Historical Fantasy

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BLURB:

There are powers at play that continue to seek amalgamating Scotland to England – powers from the past and powers from the future. It’s the late 1800s and Queen Victoria wants more than mere access to the Scottish retreat at Balmoral Castle. But King Henry I of Scotland, direct descendent of Queen Mary Elizabeth I, the time traveling royal daughter of Mary Queen of Scots, is determined to keep Scotland free and independent and a powerful, progressive nation in its own right. The struggle to protect what is his by birthright becomes a battle that must be fought in the past, the present and the future and in other parts of the world. And, in the midst of each battle, there are choices to be made. Very difficult choices.

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EXCERPT TWO:

He took time to study it closely, holding it reverently in his hands. Robert the Bruce, King of Scotland, was a famous warrior in Scottish history, one of the first to successfully rout the English from their land and maintain his realm. His sword, the one Henry now held, was a symbol of his success as well as a symbol of the power of Scotland as an independent realm. Some even suggested it had such magnificent powers and the person who wielded the sword would be unstoppable, a force to be reckoned with no matter what weapons were used against him, past, present or future. It was an heroic sword. Forged of the strongest metals available in the fourteenth century, the sword was a marvel of both craftsmanship and artistry. The pommel was beautiful with the Cross of St. Andrew, patron saint of Scotland, emblazoned for all to see and for the bearer to feel the ethereal power of the saint, as he wrapped his hand firmly around the soft, black leather-bound grip held in place by a corded silver chain. The Lion of Scotland, plated in silver, marked the throat of the black leather scabbard with a rounded silver shoe at the scabbard’s tip. A wide belt, the leather hardened with age and sorely in need of some oil to soften it, remained attached ready and waiting for a warrior to lay claim to its powers. Was Henry the warrior of whom legend spoke?

Henry wrapped the belt around his waist, feeling a surge of energy and power as he did so. He slowly unsheathed the sword and held it high for the others to see. He ran a finger gingerly along its length, marveling the blade, unused for centuries, still sharp enough to do considerable damage. It even glistened in the flickering light from the fire in the hearth. The sword glistened with an electrical surge rippling from the tip to the pommel and sizzling along the king’s arm.

His eyes lit up. “I am ready. For Scotland. To defend my realm.”

Mary Elizabeth added the rallying battle cry of Scotland, the one she had initiated during her reign. “For now and forever.”

Henry, Edward and Cecil echoed her sentiments. “For now and forever.”

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MY BOOK REVIEW:


This book is an interesting, intriguing, and thought-provoking read!

The author offers an exciting and refreshing take on the Scottish Highlands with just the right blend of time-traveling, fantasy, and historical content.

This book as the title implies is really about the choices we make and the ripple effects they have on ourselves, our loved ones, and those around us.  One path along this plot line is Henry reexamining his choice in his marriage partner, Isabel.  He proceeds to say that shortly after their nuptials he discovered that he made a regrettable decision in choosing her as his partner and that he had wished he could go back and have chosen someone else, his childhood sweetheart, Elizabeth MacGregor, a Scottish lass.  Henry quickly realized Isabel was only interested in the glitz and glamour of the kingdom and its title – not the man Henry truly was.  And furthermore, discovered Isabel had nefarious and ulterior motivates for marrying him which leads to multiple plot points over the course of the book.

Henry states that he hopes when the day comes that he does not dictate whom his son should marry when his son becomes of age.  He hopes to not apply any pressures or manipulate him like his mother did with his own wedding.  He wants his son to be able to choose his own marriage partner – well, within reason that is.  However, Henry does state that he does intend to introduce his son to his selected possible choices and allow his son to then make the final selection from that group.  So, Henry’s still planning of somewhat controlling the situation.  However, I liked that Henry is finally opening up and learning from past experiences.  He knows how much he hated having to marry Isabel and not his true love, Elizabeth, because he followed his family’s advice, and now seeing the outcome down the road, he wants more for his son.  Again, more about choices and their ripple effect that they have.

Loyalty is also a very strong theme in this book.  Particularly, Henry’s loyalty to his Royal family and to his country, Scotland.  He is very adamant about Scottish rights, it’s people, and its freedoms.  He is very passionate about everything his great ancestor, Queen Mary Elizabeth did for Scotland and it clear he is not only trying to continue on with those traditions, but also make Scotland an even stronger and more independent country!

There is also a very creative fantasy/sci-fi theme about implanted tracking microchip devices that are used in the twenty-fifth century.  It’s an interesting concept and a surprising one to find in a historical Scottish book lol – but the author seemed to make it all work and have the story come together full circle.

There are some excellent plot points and themes throughout this book that are quite compelling and thought-provoking!

I honestly could not connect or relate to any of these characters.  I had no relationship or warm feelings for any of them.  Of course, I found Isabel to be rude, selfish, cold, greedy, narcissistic, seductive, and dangerous.  But I didn’t really care for Henry either.  I found him to be demanding, demeaning, stubborn, persistent, control-freak, anxious, loud, impatient, egotistical, arrogant, and at times he seemed well, crazy.  And I did not care for what happened to George.  It seemed not very well detailed.  One minute it’s all good, next minute he supposedly tried to help Isabel escape and didn’t know it, and the next minute Henry has his best friend/cousin locked up in prison and the key thrown away.  If George was like not aware of what Isabel was having him do, I don’t know why he was locked up?  So much for friendship being worth something?!

Unfortunately, I also found the time traveling to be a bit bouncy and confusing at times.  There was so much back and forth between different periods of time.  Many of these chapters were only a few pages and it would be “sometime in the future,” and then next chapter would be in 1875 and then 2016 and then 1875 and then 1587 and then 1875 and then “sometime in the future,” and so on.  There were several passages I had to re-read to figure what was going on in the story.  Also, the “sometime in the future,” dates were somewhat puzzling as when it when back and forth I wasn’t sure if it picked back up in the same part of “sometime in the future,” or if every “sometime in the future,” was further out than the last or just further out than the current date.  I wish it had been more specific.

Also, in the book when Henry goes back in time, he is present as is his younger and older selves (depending on the time period) and goes by “Uncle Harry,” and at first, I thought Uncle Harry was a totally different character.  So, yeah, that as well was a bit disorienting.

I really liked that this book also explored the second chances theme.  I love second chance books.  The opportunity to have a do-over is like a dream.  Having the knowledge of what has gone right and what has gone wrong and then getting like a clean slate and being able to have the chance to make all the right choices and actually pursue the “what ifs” and the “if only I had” lines – it is very exciting and when Henry goes all around in his time traveling adventures and beyond he grasps so much knowledge and information that helps him reach the last plot point and a very satisfying ending.

I also would like to point out that I think the author did a fantastic job with the historical content and authenticity of the Scottish Highlands.  It was very clear she was well-versed on the culture, customs, and traditions of Scotland.

This book is book two in the Queen Mary’s Daughter Book Series.  It can be read as a standalone.  However, it seems there are many character and story line overlaps.

All in all, I enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it!  I think all historical fantasy and time-travel readers will like this book too!  So, add it to your TBR List and get to reading - you won't be disappointed!

**Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book and have voluntarily provided an honest, and unbiased review in accordance with FTC regulations.**

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AUTHOR BIO:


An avid gardener, artist, musician and writer, Emily-Jane Hills Orford has fond memories and lots of stories that evolved from a childhood growing up in a haunted Victorian mansion. Told she had a ‘vivid imagination’, the author used this talent to create stories in her head to pass tedious hours while sick, waiting in a doctor’s office, listening to a teacher drone on about something she already knew, or enduring the long, stuffy family car rides. The author lived her stories in her head, allowing her imagination to lead her into a different world, one of her own making. As the author grew up, these stories, imaginings and fantasies took to the written form and, over the years, she developed a reputation for telling a good story. Emily-Jane can now boast that she is an award-winning author of several books, including King Henry’s Choice (Clean Reads 2019), Mrs. Murray’s Ghost (Telltale Publishing 2018), Mrs. Murray’s Hidden Treasure (Telltale Publishing 2019), Queen Mary’s Daughter (Clean Reads 2018), Gerlinda (CFA 2016) which received an Honorable Mention in the 2016 Readers’ Favorite Book Awards, To Be a Duke (CFA 2014) which was named Finalist and Silver Medalist in the 2015 Next Generation Indie Book Awards and received an Honorable Mention in the 2015 Readers’ Favorite Book Awards and several other books. A retired teacher of music and creative writing, she writes about the extra-ordinary in life and the fantasies of dreams combined with memories. For more information on the author, check out her website at: http://emilyjanebooks.ca.

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CONNECT WITH EMILY-JANE:

Website:

Email:

Facebook:

Twitter:

BookBub Book Page:

Goodreads Author Page:

Goodreads Book Page:

Amazon Author Page:

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BOOK BUY LINKS:

Amazon Kindle eBook:

Amazon Paperback:

Barnes and Noble Paperback:

The Book Depository Paperback:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GIVEAWAY INFO:

Emily-Jane will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.



**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.

Audition by Skye Warren - Book Blast - Giveaway - Enter Daily!


Hi, lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Skye Warren and her new book, “Audition”!  For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Skye and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!


Audition
by Skye Warren

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GENRE: Contemporary Romance

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BLURB:

Blood and sweat. Bethany Lewis danced her way out of poverty. She’s a world class athlete… with a debt to pay.

Joshua North always gets what he wants. And the mercenary wants Bethany in his bed. He wants her beautiful little body bent to his will.

She doesn’t surrender to his kiss.
He doesn’t back down from a challenge.
It’s going to be a sensual fight… to the death.

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EXCERPT ONE:

Blinding lights. Aching lungs. Thunderous applause. The final show concludes the same way we rehearsed for months, the same way we performed for weeks. My muscles know the movements better than they understand rest. The prospect of after, of what comes next, makes my breath catch. Even as the primas take their bows, relief echoes around the stage. Vacations are planned. Relief for strained muscles. Everyone needs a break, even professional athletes. I’m the only one onstage dreading it.

We bow and curtesy with practiced grace. The curtain descends to the floor. Almost to the second we break formation—a flock of crows startled from the woods. The more exuberant among us, the young ones, the new ones, the ones using steroids, prance and jete toward the dressing rooms. Most of us limp our way out. One hundred percent of NFL players are injured every season. Professional dancing is the same. We hurl our bodies through the air, forcing massive impact through tired joints night after night. I catch my friend Marlena in my arms. Her face is white with pain.

“Ice,” she says. “Or better yet—tequila.”

I push my shoulder under hers as we exit the stage. “Don’t sell yourself short. You can have both.”

A delicate snort. “Not likely. We have to smile and flirt with the old men with big, fat wallets. And for what? I won’t be here next season. You won’t be, either.”

The reminder clangs inside me like a copper bell. I won’t be coming to the New York City Ballet after the break. We fall into our creaky chairs in the dressing room. “Are you going to miss it?”

“Miss it? Of course I’ll miss it.” Marlena turned twenty-eight last month. It’s comfortably retirement age for a dancer. “When the little children do their terrible pirouettes, when they sneeze and throw up and cry all over my leotard, I’ll think fondly of the beautiful art I left behind. Then I’ll be able to walk home. That won’t happen if I try to dance another season.”

“You’ll make a wonderful teacher. You know you were mine.” She didn’t teach me to dance. It was my first love, before I learned to flip and contort myself. Before I ever leapt from a trapeze bar.

Marlena taught me the ropes of the ballet company when I joined two years ago. Most of them thought I wouldn’t last a week. Some of them didn’t want me to. It’s a rigid world, the hierarchy stacked with graduates of Juilliard or the John Cranko school.

I don’t have a pedigree.

All I have is a body that does what it must, no matter how much it hurts.

Which means changing out of my sweaty leotard into a fresh one. We’re contractually obligated to attend the ball. Like Marlena said, we should smile and flirt with the high society people who attend. Both the male and female dancers have to do it. It’s what convinces the sponsors to write checks that will fund the next season. By the time they’re rehearsing The Nutcracker I’ll be in New Orleans, the place I swore I’d never return.

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AUTHOR BIO:


Skye Warren is the New York Times bestselling author of dangerous romance. Her books have sold over one million copies. She makes her home in Texas with her loving family, sweet dogs, and evil cat.

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CONNECT WITH SKYE:

Website:

Newsletter:

Email:
skye@skyewarren.com

Facebook:

Twitter:

Pinterest:

Instagram:

YouTube:

BookBub Author Page:

BookBub Book Page:

Goodreads Author Page:

Goodreads Book Page:

Amazon Author Page:

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BOOK BUY LINKS:

Amazon Kindle eBook:

Barnes and Noble:

Amazon Kindle eBook:

Apple iBook eBook:

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GIVEAWAY INFO:

Skye will be awarding a $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.


**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.