Archives for category: Bookish

PlusOne2_Facebook

IF YOU CAN STAND THE HEAT, THERE’S A HOT SINGLE DAD IN THE KITCHEN.

Plus One_Cover

TITLE: Plus One
AUTHOR: Mae Wood
COVER DESIGN: Alyssa Garcia | Uplifting Designs

BLURB

If you can stand the heat, there’s a hot single dad in the kitchen.

At not-quite forty and with his son in his last year of high school, Bert’s going to be dining alone.

His restaurant’s wine rep has a few ideas on how he might sate all of his appetites.

He hasn’t been buying what she’s been selling, but she’s only in Memphis for a few months before moving back home to California.

Besides, it’s not like he’s going to fall in love for the first time in his life or anything crazy like that, right?

Plus One is a steamy standalone novel.

add-to-goodreads-button

PURCHASE LINKS

Free with Kindle Unlimited | 99c for a Limited Time

AMAZON US | AMAZON UK | AMAZON CA | AMAZON AU
AMAZON UNIVERSAL

image2(1)

PRAISE FOR PLUS ONE

“I can go on and on about this book. The writing was so witty and all the food and wine references just made me want to hop on a plane and go taste some good southern food.”—After Dark Book Lovers

“…if you like Single Dads, good food, all the wine, and fitness coupled with stellar writing and extremely well-developed characters, then PLUS ONE IS THE BOOK FOR YOU. So, go ahead, one click it and enjoy.”—Y’all This Book

image1

BONUS SCENE

“Angostura bitters,” he said over his shoulder. “There was a shortage a few years a back, so I started making my own bitters.” I trailed him around the restaurant’s kitchen, a puppy in pursuit of a treat.

Ostensibly, I was here on a sales call, making my rounds at the downtown Memphis restaurants. Selling wine, taking orders, and moving on to the next restaurant or bar. But when Pig and Barley popped up on my iPad for today’s call list, I couldn’t help myself. Couldn’t help but dig around in my closet. No company-logo’ed polo shirt today.

Boobs.

And leg.

A hint of lace.

I knew what he’d order.

And knew I’d take it.

Curving his tall frame over a chopping board, another vintage concert T-shirt thin with age stretched across his powerful shoulders, he crushed a star anise with the flat blade of a knife. The meat of his left palm quickly smacking the heavy blade he held still with his right hand. And I jumped. He’d never spanked me, and I’d never wanted it. Never wanted to play that way until now.

“Do you like Absinthe? Or Sambuca?” he asked, the smell of soft black licorice wafting from the crushed pod. “Because I’m going for a stripped-down version with this infusion and will then play around with it to make a bitter I can use in cocktails.”

Flipping the knife over in his palm, he used the back to scrape the crushed pod into a glass jar filled with a clear liquid.

“Vodka? Everclear?” I guessed.

“No. Good ol’ Tennessee moonshine. Don’t ask where I got it.”

“So many, many good things in Tennessee.”

He wiped his hands and knife on a neatly folded white towel and placed the knife to the side of the cutting board, parallel and just so. His deliberate moves were instinctual when he sought out pleasure, whether from his food, his cocktails, or from me.

“So this is a sales call?” he asked.

“Yes.”

“Drennan,” he said with a smile while he folded his arms across his chest, drawing out my name like I was a naughty child. The three birds on his forearm fluttered from the muscle movement, and my hand ached to touch his inked flesh. “Who else are you calling on today?”

“Flight and a few other places.”

“Tight schedule?” he asked.

“I could work you in,” I replied, taking a step toward him and walking my fingertips along the top of the shiny steel work surface, trying to be cool while the heat built inside of me. Fighting to keep my itchy fingers to myself.

“Oh, you’ll make room.”

“Here?” I whispered, looking into his chocolate and caramel eyes. Even though it was the two of us in the kitchen, the restaurant’s general manager was working in the broom closet of an office just a few feet away.

“Uhm, did I not hear you say hi to Patti on your way back here? And she’s interviewing a couple potential new servers,” he said, quickly flicking his wrist to glance at his heavy silver dive watch, “about now, I think.”

I ran through options, scenarios, my brain fizzing from the thought of sliding my skin against his. “Just how big is the back seat in your monster of an SUV?”

“It’s still got my bike in in from yesterday. But hold on,” he said.

He pulled the phone out of his back pocket and tapped on the screen. I stepped closer to him, sliding my hands to my waist and then up, pressing my breasts together. His eyes fell on my cleavage, and his Adam’s apple worked in appreciation, his lips softening with want while his jaw tightened with need.

“Man, don’t ask any questions. Just say that I can borrow a conference room. I’ll be there in three minutes.” One hand shoved the phone back into his jeans and the other grabbed one of mine, lacing our fingers together, and he pulled me through the kitchen and the restaurant and onto the street.

“Conference room?” I asked, my legs spinning to match his long stride and quick pace as he tugged me down the bustling sidewalk.

“Yeah, be cool, okay?”

A few blocks later he blew through a glass door into a simple lobby. The Brannon Company shone in bold brass letters behind the receptionist desk.

“Mr. Forsythe?” asked a thin brunette from behind her big bangs.

“Jenny, right? Trip said—“

“Yes, sir. We’ve got a conference room ready. Will anyone else be joining you?

He’s taking me to his friend’s office to fuck? At ten a.m. on a Monday?

“Just us,” he said, not loosening his grip on my hand.

Jenny’s eyes moved to me. Taking me in from head to the tips of my nude heels and I felt my boldness begin to slip. I turned to Bert, to gauge his reaction. Yeah. No shame. His eyes fixed on the elevator bank ahead of us. The temperature of our frantic walk over pressed beneath this cool facade.

With a nod at me, Jenny led the way to the conference room. Keeping up the charade that we were here on some sort of business, I sank into an overstuffed chair at the large oak table, my back to the wall of windows. I grabbed a notepad and pen from the table and began doodling.

“If you need anything, Mr. Forsythe, please call reception and ask for me.”

“Thanks, Jenny,” he said.

“Of course. Have a good meeting,” she replied. When the heavy door to the conference room clicked shut behind her, my laughter burst to the surface.

“You cool with this?” he asked, one eyebrow lifting in amusement, as he tugged his shirt over his head, exposing his lean body with Ganesh inked in black wrapping around his right side.

“Depends,” I answered, not looking up from my notes. “What did you have in mind?”

“What did you have in mind when you decided to wear that to my restaurant?”

“Wear what?” I said, tilting my head and slowly blinking my big blue eyes at him.

“Come on, Dren,” he begged, the exasperation at my little game eating away at his patience.

“That,” I said, using the pen to point to the hard ridge in his jeans. “I was planning on coming on that.”

“Were you now?” he said, the irritation vanished.

“Yes, in fact, here’s the agenda,” I said, tossing the notepad toward him where it landed on the table.

“Are you serious?” He blinked at me and I again looked away, enjoying playing coy for once.

“We’ve got like ten minutes tops before Trip breaks this up.”

“Well, I suggest we move right to the action items, then,” I said, pointing at the paper.

His eyes rolled to the ceiling before he snatched up the notepad. “This is a drawing of a dick.”

“Yeah, I know. The agenda’s really meaty,” I said, examining the pen I twirled between my fingers.

“Ten. Minutes,” he repeated, a solid tap on the notepad punctuating each word.

“Do I hear a motion from the floor? I bet they says things like that in here, don’t they?” I said, finally turning my attention to him.

“The only motion I want from you is your ass out of that chair.”

“All in favor?” I asked, scanning the empty room for a response.

“Christ,” he said, scrubbing a hand over his face and rounding the table toward me. “I’m in favor. Let’s get down to business.”

The chair spun and he leaned down in front of me, his hands dipping into my hair to bracket my head. “You want my dick?” he whispered in my ear, the scruff on his face abrading my cheek.

I nodded as best I could in response, my teeth tugging on my lip as I let loose a soft whimper of need.

My hands explored the muscles of his shoulders. My fingernails dug in, biting flesh, and my answer to his question escaping me in a slow hiss of desire. His belt and fly open, I leaned forward to shove his jeans and boxers over his hips, so I could get my hands on his bare ass. I loved the way the heels of my hands fit into the indentations at his hips while my fingers grasped firm muscle.

His hands shoved up my skirt, running his hands along the tops of my thighs with a friction that made me melt. Thumbs stroked in tandem at the hinge of my hips and I went to open for him, but was bound by the chair’s arms.

He pressed my hips into the chair. “Patience, patience.”

“Ten minutes,” I bit out.

“He’s not going to open the door,” he replied, his warm hands sliding between my exposed ass and the chair to scoop me up and place me on the cool tabletop. “No one is. We could have this room all day. But I want you now.”

His hands returned to reach underneath my skirt, and my panties were yanked down. I could feel soft pops as his impatient fingers shredded the lace. “Sorry,” he muttered into my neck.

“Only apologize if you stop,” I replied.

“Quick pause okay? Not a stop.” He backed up, fished a condom out of his wallet and returned to me suited up. Strong and hard and proud. I pulled my feet to rest on the table and dropped my knees open for him. Opened for all of the city of Memphis beyond the wall of windows that was behind him.

Shameless for him.

Ready for him.

Needy for him.

I reached for him and, with a push, he found me. His hands once again gripping my ass and lifting me, holding me close, as he continued to thrust from below. “Drennan, Drennan, Drennan.” I knew this chant, mumbled against my lips and neck. The simple incantation of my name so filled with need and promise. The words that reduced the world to me and him. To this moment.

Coolness the length of my back snapped me out of the trance. “The window?”

“You want that?” he asked, nuzzling his scruff along my jaw. “I’ll put it on the agenda for our next meeting. But I don’t trust any glass for how hard I’m going to pound into you.”

Then I heard it—a door, banging on its hinges. “You’re not going to get invited back,” I said.

“Like I give a fuck. Come back to me. Here. Now.” My fingers tugged at his hair, fusing his mouth with mine.

A deep dive and rock against my clit and I was gone again. So gone for this man.

image4

ALSO AVAILABLE IN THE PIG & BARLEY SERIES

RISKING RUIN

Risking Ruin

BORROWING TROUBLE

Borrowing Trouble

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mae Wood is a mommy, bookworm, and lawyer (in that order).

A while ago Mae decided that she needed to give up the fear that she couldn’t write “great literature” and write what she wants to read.

And she wants romance. And laughter.

She wants heroines who are brave. Brave enough to be themselves and brave enough to fall in love.

She wants men who are strong and kind.

Mae lives in the Southeastern United States.

AUTHOR LINKS

FACEBOOK | TWITTER | INSTAGRAM | WEBSITE | READER’S GROUP

Plus One_Full

BUY ON AMAZON

Death changes us all …

Without my husband, my world caved. The business we built together is a prison. Our home, once filled with laughter and passion, is a tomb for what was. I want to give it all away and find a new place to start over. But the needs inside me, long-hidden whispers, won’t leave me alone. What I crave, a newfound darkness to match the pain, is impossible to ignore.

When Infidelity offers me a chance for fulfillment and a companion with no strings, I grasp it with both hands.

My Master is hurting. He’s filled with agonies and releases them on my flesh. We push and pull, an Owner and his slave, and I am helpless at his feet. But he strengthens me, giving me the power to fight his demons and substitute for what he’s lost.

I wasn’t supposed to fall in love, shouldn’t want to be more than a replacement. But I did, and I do. We only have the agreement between us, but I want him to own me irrevocably. Forever, always, to keep me … 

Collared.

See what Aleatha Romig has to say about one of the newest installments in her Kindle World.

BUY ON AMAZON

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Writing professionally since 2008, LeTeisha Newton’s love of romance novels began long before it should have. After spending years sneaking reads from her grandmother’s stash, she finally decided to pen her own tales. As many will do during their youth, she bounced from fantasy, urban literature, mainstream, interracial, paranormal, heterosexual, and LGBT works until she finally rested in contemporary romance. 
LeTeisha is all about deep angst and angry heroes who take a bit more loving to smooth their rough edges. Love comes in many sizes, shapes, and colors, as well as with—or without—absolute beauty and fairy tale sweetness. She writes the darker tales because life is hard … but love is harder.

The book:

Which is #FREE July 30-31  ONLY!!

http://amzn.to/2uJOaAK

Conley_Cover_PowerLove

Conley_Teaser_PowerofLove

Pelican Freak’s 5-star review:

Cover:

Editing/proofing:

Seems professional, only a few errors noticed.

Formatting:

Absolutely gorgeous! If only every book were this pretty.

Character development:

So much fun! I like Vanessa and her house- yes her house- is its own character, I think- immediately. All of the book b!tches are great, I related to them all.  The town itself is another character and I quickly fell in love with the small-town vibe. There are characters to loathe, characters to root for, and characters whose books I think I’ve already predicted – overall brilliant design all around, with impressive attention to detail.
Overall:

Wow. This book sucked me in fast and I immediately realized that putting it down resulted in serious separation anxiety. I missed it every second that I wasn’t in it. It was like a drug – I was trying to read it while walking around my neighborhood on errands, and while simultaneously talking to customers at work, for example. Hazardous!

This book has lots going on: there’s romance with heat. There’s new friendships with some really fun women -though I may be partial to the Book Bitches. There’s a bit of paranormal activity with some friendly ghosts that completely add to the charm of the town and every building in it. There’s history, and it’s completely real-feeling and fun and addictive – Conley should publish more Historicals, I’d read those all day. There’s also some modern-day mystery, which I’ll let you see for yourself… Definitely highly recommend this book.

I tend to predict everything, and I usually will not rate a book 5 stars unless it can manage to surprise me somewhere. However, this is a 5-star read, surprises or not. That said, there were a few little surprises /a few things that didn’t go exactly to my predictions.

I’ll be very impatiently waiting on the rest of this series and I strongly recommend giving this book a read. If you’ve never read Conley- do it. Start with this or Saving Charlie or Craze (which is free at the time of this posting).

Conley_Teas_quote_PowerOfLove

 

 

 

THE BOOK:

COVER_Berman'sChosen

http://amzn.to/2uk3ip4

Pelican Freak’s 4.5-Star Review:

Cover:

I really enjoy this cover; it’s fitting to the series and matches its predecessor.

 

Formatting:

Super easy on the eyes/ no distractions. Perfect.

 

Characters:

Completely in line with the perfect character design from Book 1 in this series – true perfection, with advanced character development.

 

Overall /Plot

Again we’re treated to the great, complex relationships of the protagonists and also we learn a bit more about the antagonists as more of the mystery is unraveled a bit.

This book picks up right where Book 1 leaves off and I highly recommend reading them back to back (and if you’re like me, you’ll need to!). Super fast-paced, hard to put down. Definitely missed it when I stepped away and was left with that book hangover high that’s so hard to come by these days when everything seems to be a dime a dozen and unoriginal.

I’ve come to learn that you cannot go wrong reading anything by this author, she keeps it exciting and doesn’t typically kill me with cliffhangers. Book 1 was cliffhanger-y but with Book 2 available, no big deal. Definitely anxiously waiting for Book 3 but can be patient after the way Book 2 was left. Highly recommend this trilogy.

The book:

COVER_BermansWolves

http://amzn.to/2t1rt7P

 

Pelican Freak’s 4.5-star review:

Cover:

I like the cover; it’s fitting and not like every other cover out there.


Formatting:

This book is neat, no distractions. Well-formatted.


Character Development:

Pretty perfect; the characters are likable and while there are SO many of them, they do all have their own unique voices so keeping track is easy. They’re all true to themselves, the continuity is perfect. Gretchen is really great at character design. Complex characters.

Overall / Plot:

This book had me on the edge of my seat the whole time… while it’s vague enough that you don’t know exactly what’s going on, you know everything the protagonists know and you’re not left in the dark. The reader gets to guess/ play detective along with the characters. It’s exciting, fast-paced and has some really great relationships and reality all worked into it.

Definitely left me needing more, and had a cliffhanger effect to it but Book 2 is already out so no complaints. I’d give this 4 to 4.5 stars.

The book:

http://amzn.to/2utxAWM

Hollownton Homicide

 

 

This was a super fast read, clean – no sex, though there is some violence. Exciting right up til the end – can be read as a standalone but did leave me wanting more of these characters, as they’re so well-developed.

Pelican Freak’s 4-Star review:

Cover:

Good, fitting, original and relevant.

Editing/Proofing:

Seems professionally done.

Formatting:

Very easy on the eyes, no distractions.

Character Development:

Absolutely perfect, continuity-wise this is well done, with advanced personalities / development. Really felt I got to know everyone in this book and definitely feel like I need to keep up on these people.

Plot/Overall

This book is easily 4 stars for keeping me on the edge of my seat and being overall, very well written. The professional demeanor makes it an easy read. Although it’s over  80K words, it reads FAST. Very fast-paced, lots of dialogue.

It combines some cop-thriller/ mystery with some paranormal and/or urban fantasy. MC is a human who has no prior knowledge of the existence of anything supernatural and is resistant to believe and accept, but not so much that it hinders his ability to solve the case and do what needs to be done. He’s a strong, well-developed character who could easily star in his own best-selling series. Absolutely loved this book and had a hard time putting it down, kept me excited.

 

Loved this book – would love it if there were MORE starring Renee or her fellow deltas. I’m learning that you cannot go wrong with this author at all.

For anyone who likes their stories CLEAN – you’ve come to the right place. This books is sweet, completely clean and more focused on some urban working-girl drama, with a side of romance, than just being a romance.

Doll_Making_Delta

Pelican Freak’s 4.5-star review:

Cover: 

Cute, not super professional, but totally fitting and I LOVE the originality.

Editing/Proofing:

Professional – smooth read.

Formatting:

Easy on the eyes, no distractions.

Character development:

I admit, I marvelled at this a few times. There were a lot of characters to keep straight but it was somehow made simple. Good consistency and I wanted to know about everyone that appeared. Brilliant design here.
I got really into this book really quickly, as the Delta girls’ world just had a way of pulling me right in. Renee is strong, just girlie enough, independant and has a strong support system. She’s a daddy’s girl – and I mean that in a completely innocent way. She’s likeable, kinda badass and I empathize with her throughout. This book isn’t like anything else I’ve ever read – the conversations are played out, not just described. It all feels so real; I could completely see myself in these situations, saying/doing these things. I was sucked into the book, missed it when I stepped away, etc. and it all felt so real.

It was mildly predictable but – I truly predict everything. This didn’t turn me off at all, and when it ended, I was a little sad that it was over… book hangover here. Hope Gretchen writes more from this world – I’d happily travel back to it any time.

Overall, I’d say 4, 4.5 stars. If I hadn’t been able to predict it, I’d do 5, that’s the only thing holding me back a bit.

 

Seriously – great!!