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And now we Provoke

provoke - And now we Provoke Provoke You
Cole Brothers #2
Diana A. Hicks Publication date:
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
December 16th 2019
four star - And now we Provoke

Provoke You Diana A. Hicks (Cole Brothers #2) Publication date: December 16th 2019 Genres: AdultContemporaryRomance Goodreads Amazon

Hotel heiress Ela LeBlanc is ready to take control of her life. Waking up handcuffed to a former marine and the news of her step-dad’s plans to sell the hotel is just the wake-up call she needs. With only thirty days to prove he has no claim on the property, Ela has to enlist the help of her sexy as sin bodyguard.When things take a dangerous turn, and Matt becomes the only person she can trust, she can’t help but wonder… can she trust him with her heart? Former Marine Matt Cole came to New Orleans for a fresh start, a chance to make amends. After accepting a job as the chief of security for a wealthy hotelier, he quickly realizes that life in the Big Easy is anything but. Matt’s greatest challenge is keeping his distance from the tempting Ela LeBlanc, his boss’s gorgeous and very off limits step-daughter. 

Surviving Ela is just the beginning. As things unfold it becomes clear that it’s not just his heart on the line, but their lives. PROVOKE YOU is book two in the Cole Brothers series. A new family saga binge reading experience: 5 brothers, 5 full-length novels in 5 months. Continue reading on December 16th, January 13th, February 10th, and March 9th. Don’t miss out on this suspenseful and seductive series. Note: This is a steamy romance with explicit sensual scenes, happily ever after, no cheating, and no cliffhanger.

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Review:

I found this a much better read than book 1.

For 2 reasons.

1. The author was not constantly trying to give us the background on the Cole Brothers and the previous series in which they had been involved; and

2. The writing style had improved.

The storyline and content was much better as there was now room in the story to tell us about the characters we were interested in – the hotelier’s daughter Ela, and Cole brother #2 Matt.

I am not at all sure however, that if Ela really had been an alcoholic it would that easy for her to quit the first time and then the second time to actually drink a glass or 2 and then give up. This seemed unreal as the nature of addiction doesn’t work that way. We all wish it did! That way we could eat 1 square of chocolate and not the whole bar…

However, I liked the fact that she had gone to a Cordon Bleu cookery school and had come out baking scones and not fancy French pastries. That said, scones are an under-rated delicacy and can be flavoured in many ways and made with many different ingredients, from savoury to sweet and with alcohol too. Wikipedia does a round-up of different scones around the world, from buttermilk, to drop to Australia to Japan…

scone - And now we Provoke

So, yes, I did like this book better. I think Diana could do better still and make this a true 4 star rather than a 3.5 rounded up.

Diana - And now we Provoke

About the Author

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.

Author links:

https://dianahicksbooks.com/

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

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

https://twitter.com/diana_hicks

https://www.instagram.com/dianahicksauthor/

https://www.bookbub.com/profile/diana-a-hicks

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24 hours of short stories

24 - 24 hours of short stories The 24-Hour Café ,
Libby Page
General Fiction (Adult), Women's Fiction
Orion Publishing Group
Pub Date 23 Jan 2020
five star - 24 hours of short stories

From the Sunday Times bestselling author of The Lido comes a story of friendship, belonging and never giving up on your dreams Welcome to the café that never sleeps. Day and night, Stella's Café opens its doors to the lonely and the lost, the morning people and the night owls. It's a place where everyone is always welcome, where life can wait at the door. Meet Hannah and Mona: best friends, waitresses, dreamers. They love working at Stella's - the different people they meet, the small kindnesses exchanged. But is it time to step outside and make their own way in life? Come inside and spend twenty-four hours at Stella's Café, where one day might just be enough to change your life . . .

This author is becoming a master story teller – especially of short – micro – stories.

The device used in this book is 24 hours in a cafe open for 24 hours. Within these 24 hours we read about the lives of the people who come to drink and eat there. Each person has story to tell whether it is about friendship, love, loss or even London and what it means to them. Woven through their stories is the major story about friendship and careers and London living for young women.

London is a place where you can wear anything you like, and be whoever you want without judgement.  The author says this but I have heard it myself from other young women who have some to London from more restrictive places, places perhaps where what you wear is noted and commented on, and who you are and what your sexuality is is restricted. No-one worries in London. People perhaps are too busy or too self-absorbed or too uncaring some would say. Others would say, London is free and permissive and allows people to expand and become who they were meant to be.

All this is noted in the micro stories told within these 24 hours.

A wonderful and masterful book.

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More and now Dragons

rhodesbook - More and now Dragons Rhodes
(Angelbound Offspring #4)
Christina Bauer
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Young Adult
Published by: Monster House Books
Publication date: December 17th 2019
three star - More and now Dragons

As dragon shifters, Rhodes and Zinnia should never have fallen in love. Why? Zin’s a princess while Rhodes is only the hired help. If the pair remain in the dragon realm, then age-old prejudices might tear them apart. But returning to Earth isn’t any better. In the human world, Rhodes and Zin are a musical sensation … and fame’s an even bigger relationship killer. Bottom line? Rhodes has huge decisions to make, both for himself and Zin. Unfortunately, it isn’t clear what path—if any—will end with Rhodes and his love having a future together. ANGELBOUND OFFSPRING

rhodes - More and now Dragons

This is the latest in the spin-off series from AngelBound. These tell the stories of the children and grandchildren of our original hero and heroine and more about the different species that inhabit their worlds.

Here we have 2 dragons – including one who cannot breathe fire. She and her sister are in a tower, guarded from the world, because there have been threats against them. The threats come from followers of the old Emperor who had been defeated in a previous story.

My main issue with this book is that as these stories continue to be written, the age range (apart from one scene in this book) seems to get younger. This means the stories are shorter and more simplistic than the original series. In my mind this is a shame but …

ANGELBOUND OFFSPRING
1. Maxon 
2. Portia
3. Zinnia
4. Rhodes
5. Kaps
6. Huntress

Don’t Miss These Series From Christina Bauer

– Fairy Tales of the Magicorum, a series of modern fairy tales with sass, action, and romance

– Beholder, where a medieval farm girl discovers necromancy and true love

– Dimension Drift, a dystopian adventure with science, snark, and hot aliens

– Pixieland Diaries, about a sassy pixie Calla who falls for Dare, an icy elf prince 

Get your FREE copy of Christina’s novella, BEVERLY HILLS VAMPIRE, when you sign up for her personal newsletter: https://tinyurl.com/bauersbooks***Not available in stores***

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When a Duke is a Duc

The Duke's Bride
12 Dukes of Christmas
Erica Ridley
Historical fiction, Regency, Romance
WebMotion Historical Fiction ,
Pub Date 12 Nov 2019
four star - When a Duke is a Duc

Single father and confirmed bachelor Jack Skeffington is the mastermind behind an international smuggling ring, yet unable to control his rambunctious ten-year-old twins. What he needs is a stern, experienced, no-nonsense governess. What he gets is his business partner’s untouchable sister, whose delectable body Jack yearns to pull close.

Mademoiselle Désirée le Duc cannot wait to return to France and regain her lost vineyard. But to do so, she must repay crippling debt. Determined to buy freedom, she accepts temporary employment from an Englishman with a wicked smile and a big… wine cellar. His kisses taste like heaven and his arms feel like home. How can she choose between two families separated by the sea?

The 12 Dukes of Christmas is a series of heartwarming Regency romps nestled in a picturesque snow-covered village. Twelve delightful romances… and plenty of delicious dukes!

Another nice story about Christmas / Cressmouth town and the characters we meet in it. We have met the French émigrés before – the 3 le Duc siblings. 2 brothers and a sister. And of course there is the town’s ‘smuggler’ / pirate / ex-privateer and supplier of good French brandy and wine from his partners.
A Privateer was an authorised pirate – that is someone who the Crown licensed to raid other ships and carry away their bounty. With a percentage of the profits going to the Crown of course to pay for the wars and the lack of taxes from the imported silks and wines that didn’t occur due to the war…
And then there was typhus. In Ireland 1816 a major epidemic of the disease produced 700,000 cases out of a population of 6,000,000. More major epidemics followed  in 1821 and 1836 and again in 1846 with the Potato Famine. It is a bacterial infection spread by parasites – and the most important form of typhus being epidemic typhus (borne by lice). Other forms are murine, or endemic, typhus (flea-borne); scrub typhus, or tsutsugamushi disease (mite-borne); and tick-borne typhus.
So another romance about a Duc rather than a Duke but pun or not it follows in the 12 stories about Dukes promised…

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Tea for Two and More

content?id=Pcl0DwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&img=1&zoom=1&source=gbs api - Tea for Two and More The Afternoon Tea Club
Jane Gilley
Fiction
HarperCollins UK
December 12, 2019
300
four star - Tea for Two and More

Everyone’s welcome at The Afternoon Tea Club...

Everyone’s welcome at The Afternoon Tea Club…

Marjorie, Stacy, Raymond and Dora each hold a different story to their chest – lost loves, abandoned dreams, crippling self-confidence issues, and simply feeling invisible. For each of them, the thought of letting those stories out is almost as terrifying as letting strangers in, and that makes for a very lonely life indeed.

But when these four strangers who have struggled to “fit in” end up on the same table for an event at their local community centre, little do they know that their lives are about to be entwined and changed forever because of an Afternoon Tea club.

Cue an unexpected journey of self-discovery, some unlikely new companions, and plenty of tea and biscuits along the way…

Heart-warming and poignant in equal measure, this is a story about loneliness, kindness, and the power of friendships that span generation, proving that the most simple of human connections unite us all. Perfect for fans of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, The Single Ladies of Jacaranda Retirement Village and The Keeper of Lost Things.

At first I thought ‘Oh Dear! Another sweet and cosy story about how having tea together makes you less lonely.’

But it was friendship, and intergenerational friendship too, that worked.

However, reading the characters’ back stories and finding that the characters struggled to adjust to their lives and circumstances made the book. It lifted it above the mundane. Even if it took until the end of the story for Dora to find her position in life.

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