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Hope Over Fear Blog Tour

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Synopsis
Today is the day – the day that the man I love marries someone else. I don’t deserve pity or sympathy. I’ve made my bed. I left Mason and ripped his heart to pieces as I ran away. The guilt and sorrow consume me, threatening to choke me everyday.
But today is a new beginning. Today is the day I will wake up with a renewed resolve and determination to do better … to be better … to be worthy. My name is Sara Preston, and this is my story about what happens after.

Hope Over Fear can be read as a stand alone novel.

 

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Excerpt
“The fact is, Sara, I don’t think I can let you walk away.”
He reaches around and wraps my hair around his fist, then gently pulls, exposing my neck. My breath is coming in short bursts, and I fight with my body to appear calm and in control. His nose trails delicately across my cheek, down my neck, and over my collarbone. He gently nips at the base of my neck, and my body shudders involuntarily. He kisses hungrily up the side of my neck until he reaches my ear.
“Just give me a chance. I promise you won’t regret it, beautiful girl,” he whispers. He shifts back just far enough to look into my eyes. And I’m lost. Lost in the hunger and desire I see reflecting back at me.
Lowering his head toward me, he sucks my bottom lip, and I grasp his forearms tightly for balance. There’s nothing tentative about his approach. He’s self-assured, knows what he wants, and takes it. I fucking love that. He coaxes my lips open with his tongue and devours me. As our tongues slide hungrily against each other, he pulls me even closer to him and pushes his way between my legs. Adam kisses like he’s starving, and I’m all too happy to provide.
He ends the kiss way too soon for my liking. We stay intertwined and breathless for a few moments, and I love that I hold power over him like he does over me. He looks up at me with a lazy smirk, and it feels like the wind has been knocked out of me. He’s stunning, and I can’t believe he’s interested in someone like me.

Teaser

MeetTheAuthor


 

J.A. Derouen resides in South Louisiana where she lives with her husband, son (aptly nicknamed “The Professor”), and her furry friend, Scout. She has earned bachelor’s degrees in psychology and nursing. When she’s not writing or inhaling romance novels by the stack, she works as a women’s health nurse. She’s been an avid reader and daydreamer since childhood, and she’s never stopped turning the page to get to the next happily ever after.
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Review: After the Kiss

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After the Kiss
After the Kiss by Lauren Layne

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

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They started for all the wrong reasons. Will they realize that it never has to end because of all the right ones?

After the Kiss is a perfect chick lit book. It’s a charming and sexy story in which Lauren writes romance with just the right balance between sassy, playful, sexy and drama.

Julie Greene is one of Stiletto Magazine’s top columnists. When she’s forced by her well-meaning boss to write a story about how to take a relationship beyond “first kisses” and “butterflies in your tummy”. Julie who has “built a career out of falling in love” but not staying in love is having a hard time with her assignment. But together with her friends Grace and Riley they hatch a plan for her to go undercover.

Mitchel is a Wall Street Broker who loves to read, run and watch baseball. He’s also only interested in a safe commitment but is coaxed into betting he can have fun and just a fling for the sake of great Yankee box seats.

Without knowing of their hidden agendas Mitchel and Julie zero in on each other. Can they both come out on the winning side?

“A short-term kind of girl begging for a long-term relationship from a long-term kind of guy who wanted a fling. It was movie-worthy.”

I loved Mitchell, he gave me a Clark Kent/Superman like vibe. An alpha caveman hiding underneath the mild mannered Wall Street glasses and suit. He was smart, thoughtful and discerning, with a sexy take charge attitude.

And Julie… I think part of the great things I like about Lauren’s books is that she gives us strong successful women with character but also flawed and vulnerable that make them so endearing.

I very much enjoyed how Mitchell and Julie called each other on their bullshit, their quips and banter and of course their unplanned but very explosive chemistry. I liked that they were thrown off because neither was getting what they thought they wanted, but both were getting exactly what they needed. It was romantic and swoony.

“It was like the first kiss, the last kiss, and every kiss in between, all rolled into one hot, bizarre moment.”

After the Kiss is the first in the Sex, Love & Stiletto contemporary romance series with no cliffhanger. It can be read as a standalone. If you like stories like the movie How To Lose a Guy in 10 Days I’m sure you’ll like this one.

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August Releases

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Accidentally… Over?

By Mimi Jean Pamfiloff
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When it comes to Máax, the God of Truth who refuses to follow the rules, there’s more to him than meets the eye. Literally. Because Maáx is invisible! Which is probably why, after seventy-thousand years, he’s still unable to find a mate.

Ashli Rosewood was never meant to die. In fact, her death might be the very reason the gods are now faced with stopping that pesky doomsday right around the corner. If only there was a way to undo the past.

Cue Máax. Seven feet of divine masculinity and the unruly god charged with saving Ashli. With a little help from an ancient Mayan tablet, Máax will travel back in time and set things right.

Easy, right?

Wrong.

Because Máax has one teensy challenge. He’s invisible. And every time this impatient, powerful deity gets anywhere near Ashli, he spooks her right into harm’s way. Meaning…she dies, and he has to start all over again.

Cliff, banana peel, runaway storage container filled with Belgian chocolates, bee sting, the list goes on and on. Does the Universe have it out for this girl? Sure seems that way. But why? And what will Máax do when he begins to suspect that not only is Ashli the key to stopping the apocalypse, but she may be “the one” he’s been waiting seventy-thousand years for.

How will he save the one woman the Universe insists on killing and who wants nothing to do with him?

Ugly Love

By Colleen Hoover
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When Tate Collins meets airline pilot Miles Archer, she knows it isn’t love at first sight. They wouldn’t even go so far as to consider themselves friends. The only thing Tate and Miles have in common is an undeniable mutual attraction. Once their desires are out in the open, they realize they have the perfect set-up. He doesn’t want love, she doesn’t have time for love, so that just leaves the sex. Their arrangement could be surprisingly seamless, as long as Tate can stick to the only two rules Miles has for her.

Never ask about the past.
Don’t expect a future.

They think they can handle it, but realize almost immediately they can’t handle it at all.

Hearts get infiltrated.
Promises get broken.
Rules get shattered.
Love gets ugly

Captured

By Jasinda Wilder
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You go into combat, you fear death. It’s what keeps you careful, keeps you alive. I’ve faced death more times than I can count. I’ve taken bullets. I’ve taken lives.

But nothing can prepare me for the soul-crushing terror of being captured.

***

I married a Marine. I knew the risks. Every time my husband shipped out, I knew there was a chance he wouldn’t come back. But Thomas always did. Always. Then one day two officers in full dress uniform knocked on my door and shattered my world.

How do you keep going when you lose what made life worth living?

Delay of the Game

By Catherine Gayle
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With her father’s health in question, Sara Thomas is focused on reducing his anxiety. That’s no small feat considering his high-stress job, not to mention her own distractions. Everyone knows Sara’s single; no one knows she’s pregnant. There’s never a good time to unexpectedly get knocked up, but now is definitely not it. Regardless, she doesn’t want anyone to know—especially not her father—until she has a game plan in place. But when Jonny, one of her father’s players, seeks vigilante justice on the ice, everything gets tossed out the window.

Cam Johnson’s role as a fourth-line winger with the NHL’s Portland Storm entails more than scoring goals. He has to ensure other teams don’t take liberties with the Storm’s star players. The way Cam sees it, that’s the most important aspect of his job. His teammates call him Jonny; opposing fans call him a goon; the media calls him an enforcer. The title’s unimportant. Cam will always fight for his team—even if he has to break the rules. He’s used to taking penalties, but he never meant for anyone else to suffer from his choices.

When Cam’s actions cause Sara’s worst fears to be realized, he blames himself. He’s screwed everything up; now he has to set things right. Mutual attraction leads to lust, and suddenly Cam is taking penalties at every turn…at least where Sara is concerned. He’s got to think on his feet or he’ll end up with a Delay of Game

After the Internship

By Brooke Cumberland
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Sometimes happily ever after isn’t quite what it seems.

Bentley and Ceci thought they had their happy ending, but not everything or everyone will be as it seems. Fortune and fame have a price, and when the past comes back to ruin their perfectly, stable family, how will they recover their once epic love story?

You thought their story was over, but it was only the beginning.

Filthy Beautiful Lies

By Kendall Ryan
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Meet Colton Drake…

I have no idea why she auctioned off her virginity for a cool mill. Regardless, I’m now the proud new owner of a perfectly intact hymen. A lot of good that will do me. I have certain tastes, certain sexual proclivities. My cock is a bit more discriminatory than most. And training a virgin takes finesse and patience – both of which I lack.

Sophie Evans has been backed into a corner. With her sister’s life hanging in the balance, the only choice is to claw her way out, even if that means selling her virginity to the highest bidder at an exclusive erotic club. When Colton Drake takes her home, she quickly learns nothing is as it seems with this beautifully troubled man. Being with him poses challenges she never expected, and pushes her to want things she never anticipated.

A sinfully seductive erotic romance where everything has a price and the cost of love is the highest of all from New York Times & USA Today bestselling author, Kendall Ryan.

Within these Walls

By J.L. Berg
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Within these walls, he became my solace, my sanctuary and my strength.

I am not strong. I am just a survivor of circumstance.
Isn’t that what we all do? Survive?

Each of us has our own set of circumstances to muddle through. Mine are just more…complicated.

Born with a severe heart defect, I’ve seen the inside of a hospital room more than my own bedroom.

I was drowning, a prisoner to the illness that owned me, until he appeared. He thinks he’s blocked out the world with his tattoos and hard exterior, but I see the real Jude, the one he so desperately wants to forget.

But is he the answer to my prayers or will he break my already damaged heart forever?

My name is Lailah Buchanan, and this is our story of hope, redemption and sacrificing it all for the one you love.

Review: Just One Night

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Just One Night

Just One Night by Lauren Layne

My rating: 4 of 5 stars (buy links below)

A playful and sexy read. Lauren Layne has a delightful writing style that is fresh and engaging.

When successful and sought out sex columnist Riley McKenna is forced to write an article from personal experience, she’s faced with the fact that she has (almost) none boldly resorting to the only man she’s ever really wanted, Sam Compton.

Sam has been a close friend of the McKenna family for years. He’s also been attracted to Riley since he first met her but has forced himself not to act on it because of his promise to his best friend. Riley’s brother.

But when Riley propositions Sam to Just One Night of giving into what she senses is a mutual attraction in order to get material for her column, he finds himself trapped between his feelings for her, his best friend and his own sense of unworthiness and lack of accomplishment.

With the help of her friends, Riley resorts to sneaky manipulations in order to push Sam see, their relationship is worth taking a risk, but will he be brave enough?

I really enjoyed the just a friend of the family to someone that means the world to me story. The fact that Sam and Riley had so much history made the sexy anticipation, complicated tango they were in, and the transition itself worthwhile.

“Holding on to hope that she and Sam would actually cross that line between bickering and flirting, curiosity and jealousy. Between friends and lovers.”

I was a bit frustrated by Sam at first, but then got to know him better and understood his standoffish attitude. But Riley’s character was the perfect complement, I really liked her. She’s smart, witty and brave. And together they made a appealing and hot couple.

I’ve been devouring Lauren’s books lately. They’re just the right combination of fun, drama, sensuality and pace that keep me coming back for more.

This is the third book in the Sex, Love & Stiletto series, but can be read as a standalone.

* I was given an ARC of this book for an honest review from Netgalley. The excerpts are from that copy. *

Sex, Love & Stiletto by Lauren Layne

Reading Order

     
After the Kiss Buy on Amazon

Love the One You’re with Buy on Amazon

Just One Night Our Review | Amazon

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Found in Us by Layla Hagen, Book Blitz

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Book & Author Details:
Found in Us by Layla Hagen
(Lost #2)
Publication date: July 24th 2014
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
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Ends August 12th – open INTL

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Synopsis:

**This can be read as a STANDALONE. The second book in the Lost series tells Jessica and Parker’s story.**

All Jessica wants -as a college graduate — is to be a good girl. She landed the job of her dreams at a museum and is trying to eliminate temptations. No more short skirts (when she can help it). No wild parties. And no men.

She particularly excels at that last thing. . .

Until her path crosses Parker’s. Again. Jessica remembers the last time their paths crossed very well. She was left with a seriously bruised ego. She knows it would be best to avoid him altogether. But the charming Brit makes it hard for her to elude his electrifying pull. He is as irresistible as he is captivating.

And enigmatic.

Because underneath the sleek Armani suit and the sweet British accent that makes her crave his touch, Parker isn’t the perfect gentleman everyone thinks he is.

He’s exactly what Jessica doesn’t want, but desperately needs.
A bad, bad boy.

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AUTHOR BIO
My name is Layla Hagen and I am a New Adult Contemporary Romance author.
I fell in love with books when I was nine years old, and my love affair with stories continues even now, many years later.
I write romantic stories and can’t wait to share them with the world.
And I drink coffee. Lots of it, in case the photo didn’t make it obvious enough
Author Links:

Excerpt  (Attention! Extreme hotness alert)

“I can’t make up my mind,” Parker says.Stylish guy trying to pick up a young woman

“About what?”

“About what I want to do with you.”

I gulp. “Don’t I get a say in this?”

He snaps his head up, chuckling. “Not really.”

“That’s not frustrating at all, you know? What are you thinking right now?”

He tugs his lower lip with his teeth. “You really want to know?”

“Yeah, I really want to know.”

He shifts his weight on the edge of the seat, and when he leans forward this time, I don’t back off. “I’m thinking I would very much like to see you come,” he says into my ear. My mind doesn’t register the full impact of his words right away. But my body does. “Anything against that, Jessica?” he whispers, his hand trailing up and down my inner thigh.

“N-no,” I say in a low voice. So low that I hope he hasn’t heard me. But he has. There’s no other explanation as to why his hand has already found its way under my dress.

“Turn around and spread your legs,” he commands.

“Parker,” I mumble, “not here . . .”

“No one can see us, and Dani won’t come back soon. Turn around.”

Despite knowing I shouldn’t, I turn around. My body no longer seems to listen to any commands of mine. I lean my back against his chest, my head resting on his shoulder, my forehead touching the base of his neck. I look into the room, trying to gauge what those in the boxes opposite us can see. But I can barely see anything in the back row of the boxes directly in front of us. There’s no reason to believe anyone could see us from there. Anyone looking from above won’t have a clear view of the back row either.

“Spread your legs,” he repeats, his tone more authoritative than before. It sends another wave of heat through me. Burying myself in his neck, I open up for him. He doesn’t touch me right away. He takes his time, trailing his fingers on the inside of my thigh, inciting a deep hunger in my core that grows with each inch of my skin he touches until I drop any pretense of shame and beg him, “Parker . . .”

When his fingers touch my intimate spot over my panties, I stiffen against him.

“You’re soaked,” he says, and I take immense pleasure in the slight tremble in his voice. Then his fingers start rubbing me slowly, and I dig my own fingers in the cushion of the chair as a spasm wracks through me.

This man will make me come.

Here, surrounded by people and plush velvet-covered seats.

silhouette of bridge and pair of lovers on city background

Review: Broken

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Broken
Broken by Lauren Layne

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

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An angsty modern day Beauty and the Beast where both are “completely shattered souls.” And while one is trying to put the pieces back together, the other has lost all hope. Can “two spoiled, damaged disasters” be fixed?

I briefly met Olivia in the prequel Isnt’ She Lovely. Other than her name, I knew the very basic about her and from that I wasn’t sure I wanted to know more. She seemed like a spoiled superficial rich brat with little substance. But appearances can be deceiving and the more I read about her the more I liked her.

Dropping out of NYU to basically hide from her transgression against her now ex-boyfriend Ethan and her best friend Michael, she moves to help care for a wounded veteran who she knows nothing about. Thinking she’ll be looking out for an older man, she gets the shock of her life when she meets Paul, “a guy who’s one part beautiful mystery and one part unpredictable beast.”

Wanting to atone for actions, she sticks to her assigned role as caretaker for Paul, even when he was downright mean. But she shows that his brooding, tormented and surly attitude won’t deter her and if anything she’s even more determined to break his emotional barriers and try to bring him back to a semblance of normal.

I found myself aching for and with Paul and at the same time wanting to smother him. His scars aren’t just superficial. He’s angry at everything and everyone. He carries an underserving guilt and is resigned to live out his life alone. Unloved and uncared for and making sure of it with his immensely horrid attitude. Especially towards Olivia.

“It’s just so romantic. The beautiful angel swooping in to save the surly dickwad who’s quite possibly a murderous recluse.”

But I was surprised with Olivia because she’s brave enough to see through his mask giving us glimpses of what’s underneath, bold enough to acknowledge their attraction, and then strong and confident enough to know that you can only help those who want it.

“I’m never going to understand what you’ve been through, Paul, or how you feel, but I do understand that the only person in control of it is you.”

“So those are my options. I can live in the light without you, or stay here in the dark with you.”

From my previous two Lauren reads, I was expecting a lighthearted book with great dynamics between the characters. This felt like something she needed to write. The dynamics were there, but what I got was a more touching, heartfelt story of two people who found redemption, love and happiness.

I loved the fact that I could have read through it in one sitting. It had me that absorbed in their amusing banter, angst and sexy hot mess.

I’ll be waiting for the next book in the series, but in the meantime I’ll looking for other Lauren Layne books.

* I was given an ARC of this book for an honest review from Netgalley. The excerpts are from that copy. *

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Review: Isn’t She Lovely

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Isn't She Lovely
Isn’t She Lovely by Lauren Layne
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

4.5 preppy meets goth stars

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Lauren Layne gives a fresh sound to an aged song with its amusingly antagonistic characters and fast pace.

There’s a reason why we’ve seen many versions of Pygmalion over the years in literature and movies. His story is legendary, classic and entertaining. And Isn’t She Lovely is no different.

Ethan, an ultra traditional college guy choses Stephanie, “this cranky little midget” to dress up and pose as his girlfriend to face his friends, family and ex-girlfriend. But getting the “dark gremlin” to be “a soft, blonde sweetheart” forces their two completely different and incompatible worlds to work together. Making them realize that superficially they may not fit, but underneath the stereotypes they were good for each other.

Their barbs and jabs over their very clichéd personas were dead on and funny.

“Does that surly mood come with the goth outfit? … Or do you have to buy it separately?”

Even the way he refers to her in his own mind is cute and hilarious.

“I resign myself to apologizing to the miniature gothic monster.”

Their simmering attraction grows along with their friendship which ran parallel to their confusion and conflict, because against all odds they found they could share even their secrets. And when forced to face reality and their fears they must choose between an “indie-angst, or romantic-comedy” ending.

Lauren proves that sometimes, even when you know what the destination is, the adventure is in how you get there.

This story is YA skirting on PG-13. Stephanie and Ethan come closer to She’s All That than Pretty Woman in the rating scale. You may call it sappy, but fell in love with the character’s dynamic and the writing style wrapped up in this popular theme.

* I was given an ARC of this book for an honest review from Netgalley. The excerpts are from that copy. *

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