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Ravelling – Un

Unravel You Book Cover Unravel You
(Cole Brothers, #1)
Diana A. Hicks
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publication date: November 18th 2019

It’s the wedding of the summer… College graduate Valentina de Cordoba never expected to fall for the handsome and intimidating Derek Cole when she accepted his offer to rent his property. From cottage to mansion, this single mom is certain she doesn’t deserve him or the fairytale unfolding. But Derek gets what he wants… and he wants her. He’s “the one” for her, but before she says I do, she has to survive a month long trip to his family’s estate in Atlanta. Gaining approval from four brothers and an over-protective mother might just be her hardest test yet. For hot billionaire Derek Cole, this homecoming is a chance to mend the damage he caused when he walked away from the family business. But all it takes is a bless her heart from his mother for Derek to know it will take more than tea to get the two women he loves on the same page, let alone under the same roof. Just when they think nothing else can go wrong… their past and future collide.  

Excerpt

“You had a plan when you walked into my office five minutes ago. What was it?” He gripped the edge of the armrest with both hands, crossing his legs at his ankles. The tiny flame in my chest grew bigger and spread down to my core.

“I had no plan.” I admitted because the extent of my thoughts when he texted was to come in here and have sex. All I could think of was touching him and feeling his weight on me again. But now I was a little pissed. He could’ve been more explicit. Like, hey, I’m just here to work, bring me the report. No sex. Get your mind out of the gutter. He could also wipe that knowing smile off his face. “What makes you think I had a plan?” I crossed my arms over my chest to cover my hardened nipples.

He rubbed the side of his face. “The thigh-high stockings. You know how they drive me wild. Even if I can’t see them, I know that’s the only kind you own.”

If that was true, why was he still five feet away from me? Why had he not ripped my clothes off already and had his way with me on the couch?

“I have a meeting to go to.” I bolted to the door. Before I could open it, his large hand pressed against it, effectively blocking me from leaving.

“I don’t think so.” His voice was deep and so full of meaning. He walked me back to the living area until my butt hit the back of the sofa. “You had a plan. Show me.” He gripped my waist and shifted so he was the one caged in.

I could go, or I could stay and get what I came here for. I slipped my hands inside his suit jacket and pushed it off his shoulders. His dark gaze stayed on me as I removed his dress shirt. A low moan like a hiss escaped his lips when I ran my hands down his muscled chest. His pecs were harder than I remembered. It seemed Derek’s hard body was directly proportional to the amount of stress he had at work. The more they pinned on him, the more time he spent in his boxing ring. These past three weeks must have been hell for him.

 “Now you.” His voice sounded strained.

Self-control was Derek’s superpower. I gave up all pretenses and removed my blazer and silky top quickly. My skin felt hot from needing him so much. His lips parted when I finally let my skirt pool at my feet.

He cradled my face and kissed me hard. “Fuck. Valentina. You came to work wearing that underneath?” His mouth was warm, and he tasted of cinnamon gum. I melted into him, fumbling with his belt.

“The door.” I panted in between kisses.

“I locked it.” He gripped my ass and wrapped my legs around his waist as he strode around the sofa and sat with me straddling him. “Valentina. How do you do it? How do you make me forget about everything?” He freed me from my bra and sucked on my aching nipples, switching back and forth until I couldn’t wait anymore.

“I need you now,” I whispered in his ear.

I didn’t care that my voice was laced with desperate desire. He cupped my butt cheeks and lifted me enough to give him room to lie flat on the cushions with his head on the decorative pillow. My thighs rubbed his sides as I rested on top of him, topless and without a clue what to do next.

My confusion must have registered on my face because he placed both hands behind his head and grinned at me. His biceps bulged on either side of him.

“Your show.”

“What?”

He bucked under me to get comfortable, as if he were getting ready to watch a movie or something. The grin that twitched his lip was both infuriating and such a turn-on.

“You want me inside you. Do it.”

Author Bio

Diana A. Hicks is an award-winning author of steamy contemporary romance with a touch of suspense. Book two in her Desert Monsoon series, LOVE OVER LOGIC, won the 2019 Readers’ Favorite Silver Medal Winner in the Romance – Suspense genre

When Diana is not writing, she enjoys kickboxing, traveling, and indulging in the simple joys of life like wine and chocolate. She lives in Atlanta and loves spending time with her two children and husband. Connect with Diana on social media to stay up to date on her latest releases.

https://www.facebook.com/DianaHicksAuthor/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17596254.Diana_A_Hicks

https://dianahicksbooks.com/

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Actual Dukes? Ducs?

Dukes, Actually Book Cover Dukes, Actually
by Erica Ridley
Historical Fiction , Romance
WebMotion
Pub Date 22 Oct 2019

The Duke of Azureford isn’t the arrogant, aloof lord his peers perceive him to be. Yes, he’s awkward, but he has a plan to fix it. In order to woo a respectable lady, he must learn how to flirt. The completely inappropriate girl next door would make a perfect instructor, but a terrible duchess. So why can’t he walk away? Incorrigible hoyden Miss Carole Quincy likes billiards, fast carriages, and the beautiful, buttoned-up Duke of Azureford. She’d be delighted to help him out of his shell and into her arms. Who cares if they’re just pretending to flirt? The heady, breath-taking, soul-consuming feeling inside her runaway heart surely can’t be loveThe 12 Dukes of Christmas is a series of heartwarming Regency romps nestled in a picturesque snow-covered village. After all, nothing heats up a winter night quite like finding oneself in the arms of a duke!

A short xmas novella in the Xmas town, high in the mythical English mountains. where they get lots of snow, almost all year round. New England one suspects…

Cute and funny. Love a heroine who can play billiards because she knows her geometry! Not me alas, but why not? I have friends who are architects/engineers and can do all this, it was just the social customs then that made females un-emancipated.

As always a nice read.

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Fairy tale town USA – spells and witches

A Slice of Christmas Magic Book Cover A Slice of Christmas Magic
One More Chapter #2
by A. G. Mayes
Romance
Harper Impulse and Killer Reads

A magical Christmas mystery perfect for fans of Debbie Macomber! A recipe for festive disaster… With Aunt Erma back in charge of her magical pie shop Susanna Daniels thought life would return to normal. But there is no ‘normal’ in Hocus Hills and as the most magical time of year approaches Susie finds herself in a race to stop a magic revolution. Add in the unexpected arrival of the one that got away and a mysterious dog named Duncan, and it’s clear that this will be one Christmas that Susie will never forget!

Initially I found this book confusing. Have I read the first chapters before? Was it at the end of a previous book? Or did I read an early draft?

Or something else?

I thought that this story was not quite up to the standard of book 1. Perhaps because the ‘strange’ in the story is now familiar. It needed for me more than the same enemies.

I was very worried about the level of diabetes in this community with the amount of cream pie they are eating. A very American dessert and thing to do. Perhaps the author could let them eat something healthier occasionally? A fruit flan would be an improvement.

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Social commentary and Romance

The Red Hot Earl Book Cover The Red Hot Earl
Love is All Around Book #1
by Darcy Burke
Romance, Historical
Darcy Burke Publishing
Pub Date 24 Sep 2019

The Earl of Buckleigh was once an untitled misfit, tormented at Oxford. Now, he’s overcome his challenges and is eager for the future, especially when his oldest and dearest friend, Bianca, needs help to save the annual holiday party. Ash has a plan to rescue the event, but when the bullies from his youth are up to their old tricks, he must risk everything to put the past behind him and find true love. Furious when her brother refuses to host the St. Stephen’s Day party, Lady Bianca Stafford is committed to giving the villagers their celebration. In Ash, she sees salvation for their local tradition, and perhaps a future she never expected. But her brother has other plans for her—a Season and marriage, and not to Ash. When disaster strikes, everything she cares about is threatened and it will take a miracle—or a hero—to save the day. The Red Hot Earl is inspired by the song and story, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

The thing I like about Darcy Burke is that in each book she explores an aspect of society apart from the whole historical romance and women’s lib in the 1800s.

This book looks at the problem of people having Tourette’s when it wasn’t realised to be a medical syndrome.

Tourettes is a neurological disorder characterized by repetitive, stereotyped, involuntary movements and vocalizations called tics. The disorder is named for Dr. Georges Gilles de la Tourette, the pioneering French neurologist who in 1885 first described the condition.

Before  this time it was thought to be a ‘problem that could be cured by [harsh] treatment and was voluntary on the part of the sufferer. Of course, the more people tied to ‘cure’ it, the worse the syndrome became as stress aggravates, as with stuttering and so on.

So we found here in the Earl in question.

The problem he also had was, although he didn’t know it, but suspected, he had a 50% chance of passing the syndrome on to his children. So add that to a nice Regency romance and you get a book worth reading.

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Threatened? The author explains about Pirates

The Veiled Threat Book Cover The Veiled Threat
(The Veiled Duchess #1)
Sophia Menesini
Genres: Fantasy, LGBTQ+, New Adult, Romance
Independently published
Publication date: June 30th 2019

Captain Shea Lara is the current leader of The Veiled Duchess. The most feared pirate ship in all of Neried. And now, after completing her former mentor’s final score, she’s retiring. Everything seems to be coming to an end… Until a mysterious stranger drags her back into the fold with an offer for a score she can’t refuse. All she has to do is kidnap the crowned princess of the northern Queendom, Princess Joana of Arethusa. The prize is just within reach. But sparks fly as the two women collide. And an obscured threat that could upturn Shea’s entire world storms on the horizon. She’ll face it alone unless she can allow herself the support she needs from old and new allies alike. Something’s coming and Shea is at the center of it.

Sophia tells us:

  • Can you tell your readers something about why you chose this particular topic to write about? What appealed to you about it? Why do you think it is different and your approach is unique?

I came up with the idea for Shea Lara in a DnD session. I’d never played before, I was there kind of by chance, and they handed me a character sheet and I just started writing about who I’d want to be in a fantasy world. I always loved pirates growing up, Pirates of the Caribbean was one of my favorites. The girl was a king, the guy was the damsel, and Jack was amazing. So I thought if I could be anyone I’d be a pirate. And Shea was born. I worked on the concept, evolved her into a story and Nereid was created soon after. I don’t know if my approach is unique, I tend to have a concept about a character and then I create a world around them.

  • Did you need to self-publish on e-books before a publisher took you up?

I self-published. I’ve never worked with a publishing firm, I’ve never really wanted to. I knew that I wanted to get my story out there and I didn’t want to go the traditional route, waiting on someone else to do the work for me. I thought I’m capable, I’m passionate about this. I’m going to do this. So I did.

  • Would you recommend self-publishing and building an audience before approaching a publisher? If so, what benefits do you see that it might have for the aspiring novelist?

Personally, I’ve never thought about it, if traditional publishing was to become an option for me in the future I don’t know if I would take it. I’ve done a lot as a self-publisher and it’s a lot of work but at the end of the day the reward is mine and the story is mine. I think if traditional publishing works for you, you should do it, but people should know it’s not the only route and it doesn’t validate your work. You validate your work by working hard and persevering.

  • What do you read when you are ill in bed?

When I’m at home, sick, and I need something comforting I pull out my old Percy Jackson books. I loved the first series growing up and it’s just sentimental. The stories are familiar, the epics, the characters and I love anything to do with mythology.

  • What is your favorite genre?

I’m a fantasy nerd. I write fantasy and I read it. I love historical fiction and high fantasy are my absolute favorites. I don’t tend to branch beyond that, I’ve tried but I’m not an everyday Brooklyn girl. I get too much reality in my own life. So any kind of book that features a mystical land or dystopian universe that expands imagination, it’s on my shelf.

  • If you could recommend a living author – who would it be? A dead author?

The living author would have to be Aimee Carter. I’m such a fan of her Goddess Test series, she’s a fantastic writer. And dead, J.R.R. Tolkien. Huge fan of the hobbit growing up and I am a very detailed oriented writing so LOTR was a huge inspiration to me.

  • In your opinion who is the funniest author now writing?

Rick Riordan cracks me up in any of his series, he has got humor down pact. And all of his characters are so wonderfully relatable and Percy’s inner dialogues are my own half the time.

  • Have you ever tried to imitate another author’s style? And if so, why?

I took a lot of pointers from Tolkien, and other writers in the fantasy interwoven with mythologies. Tolkien’s descriptions were something I really loved and I wanted to create a cinematic feel to my story as if you could see it happening in your mind’s eye. Rick Riordan, Aimee Carter, L.J. Smith are all masters at creating a kind of mythology of their own incorporating the original aspects and making incredible folklore. I definitely drew inspiration from their models for the world of Nereid.

  • What have you done with the things you wrote when in school?

I have all of them! I have all my childhood journals, my old fanfictions, my scripts for television shows, my “book” I wrote when I was 12 and they’re completely cringe-worthy but I love them and will keep them forever. I never know if maybe I’ll try and revive them again.

  • Do you have any pets? I do!
    • If so, what are they? Two Chihuahuas and a Cat.
    • And what are they called? Ziggy, Zeppelin, and Bowie.
    • Do they help you write? No, they’re complete distractions. But I usually make one of them sit on my lap at my desk anyway.
    • What is the funniest thing they have done while you are writing? I remember one time Ziggy and Zeppelin my two Chihuahuas were begging for attention but I had to get this chapter done so I made them wait. But Bowie strolls into my office and sees his brothers trying to get my attention and how it’s not working and so he does what they cannot. He jumps onto my desk and lays himself across my keyboard much to his brother’s dissatisfaction. And I’m ashamed to say, he got the cuddles first.
  • What, in your life, are you most proud of doing?

This book. It’s been a real reward. I worked so hard to get it out there. I am a college student, newly married, I don’t have the money to spend 2 grand on a professional editor and to keep sending out printed manuscripts to publishers. So I found an illustrator at my college for my book map and she did an amazing job, I had a good friend who’s an incredible English major and wants to be an editor, edit my book for free. And I do all the social media, marketing, I built my own website. I do it all. And occasionally there’s a review about a typo or spacing problem. And as soon as I get it, I fix it and republish. And I do this again and again because it’s worth it and because of my hard work I now can afford a professional editor who’s reviewing The Veiled Threat and my sequel right now. And those reviews about the stray typo are never about the story itself and that’s what matters. My story is out there, and being told, and loved and I am extremely proud.

  • If you could be any fictional character, which would you be? And why?

Claire Fraser from the Outlander series. I am so sorry my dear husband, maybe I can take him with me. It would be really cool to travel through time, I’m a history major and Scotland in the eighteenth century is of particular interest to me. Plus Jamie Fraser, need I say more?

  • If you could choose to live in another country/town – which would you choose? And why?

Edinburgh, Scotland. It’s my favorite place in the world, I’ve been four times and I’d love to live there permanently someday or even in the Scottish highlands. I think Scotland is the most beautiful place on earth. It’s rich with history and magic and lore. It’s an inspiration in itself.

  • What would you take on a desert island to read if you could only take 3 books?

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan, The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien, and Outlander by Diana Gabaldon.

Author Bio

Goodreads Amazon

Sophia Menesini lives in Martinez, CA with her husband, and their two small Chihuahuas, Ziggy and Zeppelin. The Veiled Threat is her first novel and the first book in The Veiled Duchess Series. Sophia is an avid tea connoisseur and lover of Scotland with an unconventional memory for obscure Disney and Broadway song lyrics.

You can find my blog, updates, and other entertainment at my website: www.sophiamenesini.com. https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19257386.Sophia_Menesini

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