Book Blitz: Chasing Fireflies by Claudia Y. Burgoa

Chasing Fireflies 
by Claudia Y. Burgoa 
Publication date: September 9th 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

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Book Synopsis:

USA Today Bestselling author Claudia Burgoa brings you an emotional and inspirational story that will tug on your heartstrings. 

The first time I met Oliver Tanner he was five years old. 
I was four. 
That day he was entrusted to my keep.
He was as large and loud as a church mouse. 
That day I taught him how fireflies were magic with the persistence of a person. 
That’s what I loved about them. 
No matter how far they strayed, 
they remembered where they came from and who their family was. 

After high school, he joined the army and left Knox Ridge.

Years later, the town had changed.
My dreams were shattered. 
We had nothing left.
I had forgotten all about the magic of the fireflies.
Until he came back to town. 
Everything about him was comforting. 
He brought some light to my darkness, 
But I knew the light could only last for so long. 
Fireflies only stay for the summer.
He had outgrown our small town. 
It was time for me to stop chasing fireflies. 


Excerpt:

Kit Kat,

Death isn’t kind. It just takes people away. It doesn’t care who you are, what you’ve done, or who will miss you when you’re gone. It just rips people apart.

Today, I almost left. I don’t fear death. I fear leaving you behind. I fear not telling you how I feel about you. How I have felt all these years. You’re the only thing I think about when we’re out scouting. You’re the one thing that gets me to sleep at night. You’re the most important person in my life, and the worst part about being out here is knowing that I might never see you again.

I’m not exactly sure when I fell for you. But I know I have feelings, and they burn stronger every day. Your letters are what keep me alive in this sea of bullets, blood, and sand.

Mine isn’t a fairytale. Maybe a morose story with a bittersweet ending. Though I pray that someday I can see your beautiful face again. Some days that feels like an impossible fever dream.

I wish I were home with you right now, or that I was brave enough to send you this letter.

Always Yours,

Oliver


Giveaway:

Giveaway ends September 26th.

The grand prize is:

  • $50 Amazon gift card

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/2f00f39935/


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Purchase Links:

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Claudia is an award-winning, USA Today bestselling author. She lives in Colorado, working for a small IT. She has three children and manages a chaotic household of two confused dogs, and a wonderful husband who shares her love of all things geek. To survive she works continually to find purpose for the voices flitting through her head, plus she consumes high quantities of chocolate to keep the last threads of sanity intact.

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As Long As We Both Shall Live by JoAnn Chaney

As Long as We Both Shall Live: A Novel by [Chaney, JoAnn]

4 Stars

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Date of publication: January 19th, 2019

Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense

Where you can find As Long As We Both Shall Live: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

What happens when you’re really, truly done making your marriage work? You can’t be married to someone without sometimes wanting to bash them over the head…

As Long As We Both Shall Live is JoAnn Chaney’s wicked, masterful examination of a marriage gone very wrong, a marriage with lots of secrets…

“My wife! I think she’s dead!” Matt frantically tells park rangers that he and his wife, Marie, were hiking when she fell off a cliff into the raging river below. They start a search, but they aren’t hopeful: no one could have survived that fall. It was a tragic accident.

But Matt’s first wife also died in suspicious circumstances. And when the police pull a body out of the river, they have a lot more questions for Matt.

Detectives Loren and Spengler want to know if Matt is a grieving, twice-unlucky husband or a cold-blooded murderer. They dig into the couple’s lives to see what they can unearth. And they find that love’s got teeth, it’s got claws, and once it hitches you to a person, it’s tough to rip yourself free.

So what happens when you’re done making it work?


First Line:

If you try to kill your wife without a plan, you will fail.

As Long as We Both Shall Live by JoAnn Chaney

My Review:

I have been reading a lot of psychological thrillers/mysteries and I have been getting burnt out on them. So I went into reading As Long as We Both Shall Live not wanting to read it. I am glad that I made myself read this book. It was fantastic.

There are four plotlines in As Long as We Both Shall Live. Yes, 4. When I realized that, I did an internal groan. Anything over two plotlines and I get confused. In As Long as We Both Shall Live, the author was able to keep the plotlines separate. She was also to merge the plotlines when needed. There was a little lag in the middle of the book when two of the plotlines joined. Other than that, this book zipped right along.

I loved how snarky this book was. There were points where I was dying laughing with the views on marriage. I am not married but have been in a relationship for 15 years, and I get it. That’s what made parts of this book funny to me.

Detective Loren is one of my new favorite fictional characters. I will admit, I wasn’t too sure about him when he was introduced. He was abrasive and rude to everyone. But slowly (and yes, slowly) a different side of him was shown. By the end of the book, I loved him.

The mystery angle of the book was good. The author did a great job of keeping me in the dark about what exactly happened the day Marie disappeared. She slowly let out clues about what happened. There are also so many red herrings. That is what made it enjoyable to read!!

I loved how the author brought everything together at the end of the book. The twists were what made the ending for me. I had guessed about one of them early in the book. But the other one, oh no. That took me 100% by surprise.


I would give As Long as We Both Shall Live an Adult rating. There is sex. There is language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread As Long as We Both Shall Live. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Book Blitz: Good Grief by Vera Elle Unita

Good Grief 
by Vera Elle Unita 
Publication date: September 15th 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

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Book Synopsis:

He wanted nothing more than to forget his past.
Until she came along, bringing color back into his world.
Now he’ll do everything to make her his.

Jasmine Frost had imagined the first day at her new job quite differently. How on earth could she have known the arrogant billionaire Cole Ward would insist on her leading the renovations of his mansion?
To oversee the project, Jasmine moves in with Cole. Turns out, the mansion needs more than a little makeover, and she is stuck with that growly bear of a man for weeks. He doesn’t even like her French bulldog—who the hell doesn’t like puppies?
Still, they can’t withstand the strong attraction between them. The dark look in his eyes is intriguing and Jasmine can’t keep herself from digging into his past. But what if she doesn’t like what she finds?

Fast, steamy, insta-love romance novel. Standalone, no cheating, HEA guaranteed.


Excerpt:

Where did he know her from? Cole still hadn’t figured it out. It bugged him since he was certain he’d seen that angelic face some time in his life before. And the colors on her! Only, he remembered her as even more colorful? Unsure, he kept pacing up and down in front of the window in his study.

The past few years, he’d lived solely for his tech firm, had buried himself in work after…no, he refused to think about it. He never ever wanted to think about that again. Back then he’d given himself one week. God, those seven days he’d drunk so much, he only remembered little shreds of it. That was good, though, because it had been the darkest time in his life. Never would there be a darker hour. 

First, he’d drunk away his sorrow, then he’d lost himself in work. Over the years, he’d met many, many people. He had never really looked at their faces, though, because they just didn’t matter to him. Since that one night so many years ago, he didn’t care anymore—not for anything or anyone. His life was divided into two parts: before and after.

‘Before’ measured thirty-three years, ‘after’ only five. ‘Before’ had been a bright, happy time, full of laughter and sunshine, but the memories were too painful to let them cross his mind. ‘After’ didn’t contain anything important to him. Yes, his corporation meant a billion-dollar income, but for Cole it was only something to do, something to take his mind off what had happened years ago. He would throw everything away if only he could go back in time and change the past. Anything. For that, he would do anything at all!

Only, the past could never be changed. In one simple night, he’d become hard and cold. During the ‘after’ time he hadn’t really lived, only gone through the motions. No wonder he couldn’t pinpoint Jasmine Frost’s face. Probably she’d worked for one of his many associates and they’d met in a hallway or something. Cole couldn’t remember; it was all distorted in his mind. The last five years he hadn’t really lived, just existed.

When he had first seen her, he’d felt like he’d awakened after an endless sleep.  Jasmine Frost had brought color back into his gray world. In fact, she’d done the impossible. Cole hadn’t thought that anything or anyone could ever make a difference in his life again. But she had. Everything had changed; his feelings had been and still were all over the place. After feeling nothing for so long, he wasn’t quite able to control himself. Yeah, that had been pretty obvious, seeing his behavior, or more so lack of behavior, in that elevator. 

The only problem? Jasmine didn’t only bring color, no, she’d made every fucking memory come crashing back down on him. Not thinking about the past didn’t work anymore. The door, which he’d closed on his memories, had been ripped open. Now he couldn’t shut it anymore. She needed to fix that…him.

Still pacing, Cole raked a hand through his hair. All night he’d hardly gotten any sleep, had been way too unsettled to close his eyes. There was guilt and want, grief and hope, sadness and happiness all mixed together, rattling and shaking him to his core. For the thousandth time, he glanced through the window onto the long driveway to his home. Still no car, still no Jasmine. Where was she? He was a mess, couldn’t wait to see her face again. How would it feel this time? Would the gray come back into his world and eat everything away until there was nothing left, or would Jasmine awaken him once more with all her bright colors?

Cole wasn’t sure if he should wish for or fear the latter. 

When he looked out of the window again, his heart stopped for a second. A car was driving up to his house. Of course, it was a bright yellow Mini Cooper. The sun was coming back to him.


Giveaway:

Giveaway ends September 26th.

The grand prize is:

  • $20 Amazon gift card

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251233273/


Purchase Links:

Amazon


Due to her father’s many business trips, Vera Elle Unita was born in Germany near Stuttgart in 1990. Since then she has traveled a lot, even studied one year abroad, but finally settled down with her husband and two beautiful dogs back home in the US—hello, Boston! She likes new hair colors, chocolate (who doesn’t?), and reading or writing about strong, perfectly imperfect book boyfriends struggling with their past. Everyone just needs a little love, right?

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Book Blitz: Academy of Littles Collection by Allison West

Academy of Littles Collection 
by Allison West 
Published by: Blushing Books Publications
Publication date: September 18th 2019
Genres: Adult, Historical, Romance

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Book Synopsis:

He demands you enroll in the Academy of Littles.
You have no other choice.
He takes what’s his. 
You.

You hold on to your most prized possession.
Your virtue.
What happens when you give yourself over and learn to submit completely?

Three women. Three Papas. Three scandalous stories of love, passion, and learning to obey. Not for the faint of heart.

Publisher’s Note: This is a collection of three steamy, dark romance tales – Enrolling Little Etta, The Nanny, and Little Secrets – which contain power exchange and scenes which may trigger some readers.


Excerpt:

Tell me, when was the last time you felt the innocence of being a child: carefree and without worry?” he asked gently. 

Sighing and allowing her shoulders to collapse in a slump, she answered. “I do not remember ever being carefree and without worry, Mr. Hartley. I do not have the luxury in life to do so.” 

“Do you not wish sometimes that you could be like a child? Have no worries, no concerns of misfortune, and no hard decisions to make. Have you ever wished to have someone take care of you, fully take care of your every need? Have you ever wanted to be tucked in at night, kissed on the forehead and told to have sweet dreams, and you would, because someone who loves you very much has already chased the bad dreams away?”


Giveaway:

Giveaway ends September 26th.

The grand prize is:

  • $25 Amazon gift card

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251233280/


Purchase Links:

99¢ for a limited time!

Amazon


Allison West is a #1 International Best-Selling Author in Erotica, BDSM, Romantic Erotica, Sci-Fi, Victorian, and Historical Erotica. She also writes young adult novels under the name Ruth Silver.

Allison West has been inventing worlds and writing stories for years. Her favorite novels are those that leave a lasting impression, long after the final page is read. You can find more about Allison on Facebook, Twitter, and her blog “Spanking Author.” http://spankingauthor.com

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Cover Reveal: A Perfect Mistake by Laura Brown

Book Synopsis:

The closest social worker Nica Anders has ever come to breaking the rules is adding extra chocolate to her brownie recipe. One look at a Deaf man and she’s tempted for a different kind of indulgence. The following day at work she finds herself staring at the handsome man who vacated her bed that morning, realizing he was the one man she shouldn’t have licked. 

Cam Thompson was all but raised by his Deaf grandmother, learning ASL from her when his own parents refused to sign. Her death conjures up the familiar feelings of being alone amidst loved ones. When Nica turns out to be his grandmother’s social worker, he reaches out to her to help him cope. The pair battle an attraction that won’t quit, breaking every rule in Nica’s social worker’s code of ethics. 

An incriminating letter from a disgruntled family member is sent to Nica’s boss, putting her job at risk. Now Cam must fight against the letter and prove to Nica he’s worth the complications.


A Perfect Mistake 
by Laura Brown 
Published by: Lakewater Press
Publication date: November 12th 2019
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

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Pre-order Links:

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Laura Brown lives in Massachusetts with her quirky abnormal family, consisting of her husband, young son, and three cats. Hearing loss is a big part of who she is, from her own Hard of Hearing ears, to the characters she creates.

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WWW Wednesday: September 18th, 2019

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Wars.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


What I am currently reading:

The Grace Year by Kim Liggett

Survive the year.

No one speaks of the grace year. It’s forbidden.

In Garner County, girls are told they have the power to lure grown men from their beds, to drive women mad with jealousy. They believe their very skin emits a powerful aphrodisiac, the potent essence of youth, of a girl on the edge of womanhood. That’s why they’re banished for their sixteenth year, to release their magic into the wild so they can return purified and ready for marriage. But not all of them will make it home alive.

Sixteen-year-old Tierney James dreams of a better life—a society that doesn’t pit friend against friend or woman against woman, but as her own grace year draws near, she quickly realizes that it’s not just the brutal elements they must fear. It’s not even the poachers in the woods, men who are waiting for a chance to grab one of the girls in order to make a fortune on the black market. Their greatest threat may very well be each other.

The Grace Year has been on my must read list for a few months. But, I kept having to put it off (real life issues). So, I was excited when I looked at my list of ARC’s to read and it was next. I read a chapter last night and can’t wait to continue reading it.

The Grace Year is currently available for pre-order. Its expected publication date is October 8th. Be on the lookout for my review after that date.


I recently finished reading:

Rise of the Dragon (The Legend Series: Book 5) by Kylie Stewart

Alexandria is now The Duchess of Avalon, Arthur’s wife and rightful queen. Love declared, promised kept, and title won. Her victory, however fleeting, will cost her dearly.

Avalon now faces the full force of what Mordred has planned for him and his knights. But what he doesn’t know is that one among them has a secret.

Will the person in hiding prove to be friend, enemy, or something else entirely?

And what happens when a ghost from the past resurfaces not as a friend, but as mortal enemy?

Rise of the Dragon is book five of The Legend Series based off of the Legends of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

I was disappointed when I saw that I missed out on book 4 of the series. When I started Rise of the Dragon, I felt that I was missing something. But, nonetheless, it was a good read. An excellent modern retelling of the legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

Rise of the Dragon is currently available for purchase. Be on the lookout for my review with in the next week.


What books I think I’ll read next:

What Rose Forgot by Nevada Barr

In New York Times bestselling author Nevada Barr’s gripping standalone, a grandmother in her sixties emerges from a mental fog to find she’s trapped in her worst nightmare

Rose Dennis wakes up in a hospital gown, her brain in a fog, only to discover that she’s been committed to an Alzheimer’s Unit in a nursing home. With no memory of how she ended up in this position, Rose is sure that something is very wrong. When she overhears one of the administrators saying about her that she’s “not making it through the week,” Rose is convinced that if she’s to survive, she has to get out of the nursing home. She avoids taking her medication, putting on a show for the aides, then stages her escape.

The only problem is—how does she convince anyone that she’s not actually demented? Her relatives were the ones to commit her, all the legal papers were drawn up, the authorities are on the side of the nursing home, and even she isn’t sure she sounds completely sane. But any lingering doubt Rose herself might have had is erased when a would-be killer shows up in her house in the middle of the night. Now Rose knows that someone is determined to get rid of her.

With the help of her computer hacker/recluse sister Marion, thirteen-year old granddaughter Mel, and Mel’s friend Royal, Rose begins to gather her strength and fight back—to find out who is after her and take back control of her own life. But someone out there is still determined to kill Rose, and they’re holding all the cards.

Snowfall on Cedar Trails (Sweetwater Springs: Book 3) by Annie Rains

From a USA Today bestselling author comes a heartwarming holiday romance between the a small-town florist and the handsome chief of police. Includes a bonus novel by Miranda Liasson!

Last Christmas was tough for Halona Locklear and her seven-year-old son Theo, who hasn’t spoken a word since his father’s death. This year, Halona wants nothing more than to give him a good holiday and to hear his sweet voice again. Enrolling him in the Mentor Match program might help, but when Theo gets matched with Sweetwater Springs Chief of Police, Alex Baker, Halona realizes that the handsome hero might know secrets about her past that she is determined to keep buried.

Chief of Police, Alex Baker, re-opens his father’s hit-and-run cold case every December, hoping to finally solve it. This year, his plate is full with being a Mentor Match to a young seven-year-old boy as well. His biggest obstacle, however, is fighting his attraction to the boy’s mother, Halona. As Alex gets close to solving his father’s cold case, he learns that those closest to him may be in danger — including Halona. Alex has already lost one of the most important people in his life; he isn’t about to lose her too, even if it means walking away to keep her safe.

Highland Jewel (Royal Highlander: Book 2) by May McGoldrick

The next book in the new lush Scottish historical series from USA Today bestselling author, May McGoldrick.

Maisie Murray is the picture of docility, quiet and compliant in the eyes of her family. To her activist friends, however, she’s a fearless crusader for women’s rights. In the wake of the Peterloo Massacre, Maisie and a friend found the Edinburgh Female Reform Society, and she carries the banner for universal suffrage.

Niall Campbell, a hero of the wars, a decorated officer of the Royal Highland Regiment, is battle weary and searching for stability in his life. A fierce warrior by training and a poet at heart, Niall walks away from the shining career that lies ahead of him, to the dismay of his superiors. In saving his sister when a protest turns violent, he meets Maisie. Their relationship begins as one of experience versus idealism, of scars versus hope. Soon, however, he finds in Maisie the heart he longs for.

When Niall’s sister is arrested and disappears, he quickly realizes his life is not his own, for the British authorities have a mission for him to accomplish in exchange for his sister’s freedom. Overnight, Maisie loses Niall, her friend, and her home. And the wake of the riots that sweep through the cities of Scotland, Maisie’s own sister Isabella is branded a traitor to the crown, and the family must flee to the Highlands. Here in the heart of the Highlands, Maisie runs into Niall again. He has a new name and carries a message of hope―but Niall has a task to complete―and their future rests on their ability to overcome the forces that divide them, or―for the future of Scotland―she must stop the man who owns her heart.

The Fixer Upper (Echo Springs: Book 1) by Maggie Mae Gallagher

Abby Callier is more in love with Shakespearean heroes than any real man, and she’s beginning to wonder if there is life for her outside the pages of a book. It doesn’t help that her esteemed parents tend to view her as they would one of their science experiments gone wrong. On the eve of finishing her dissertation, she escapes her staid existence to live in the house she inherited from her Great Aunt Evie in the small town of Echo Springs, Colorado. Because, let’s face it, when a woman starts comparing her life to horror films, it might be time for a break.

Sheriff Nate Barnes believes in law and order and carefully building the life you want. In his spare time, he has been remodeling his house in the hope that one day it will be filled with the family he makes. But Nate doesn’t like drama or complications and tends to avoid them at all costs. And yet, when Miss Abigail Callier, his newest neighbor, beans him with a nine iron, he can’t help but wonder if she might just be the complication he’s been searching for all along. It doesn’t hurt that he discovers a journal hidden away by the previous tenant and decides to use Old Man Turner’s advice to romance Abby into his life.

Abby never expected her next-door neighbor, the newly dubbed Sheriff Stud Muffin, to be just the distraction her world needed.

The problem is she doesn’t know whether she should make Echo Springs her home, or if this town is just a stopover point in her life’s trajectory. And she doesn’t want to tell Nate that she might not be sticking around—even though she should because it’s the right thing to do, the honest thing—because then all the scintillatingly hot kisses with the Sheriff will come to an abrupt halt. Did she mention that he’s a really great kisser?

The Orchid Throne (Forgotten Empires: Book 1) by Jeffe Kennedy

Welcome to the world of Forgotten Empires from award winning author Jeffe Kennedy that begins with The Orchid Throne.

A PRISONER OF FATE

As Queen of the island kingdom of Calanthe, Euthalia will do anything to keep her people free—and her secrets safe—from the mad tyrant who rules the mainland. Guided by a magic ring of her father’s, Lia plays the political game with the cronies the emperor sends to her island. In her heart, she knows that it’s up to her to save herself from her fate as the emperor’s bride. But in her dreams, she sees a man, one with the power to build a better world—a man whose spirit is as strong, and whose passion is as fierce as her own…

A PRINCE AMONG MEN

Conrí, former Crown Prince of Oriel, has built an army to overthrow the emperor. But he needs the fabled Abiding Ring to succeed. The ring that Euthalia holds so dear to her heart. When the two banished rulers meet face to face, neither can deny the flames of rebellion that flicker in their eyes—nor the fires of desire that draw them together. But in this broken world of shattered kingdoms, can they ever really trust each other? Can their fiery alliance defeat the shadows of evil that threaten to engulf their hearts and souls?

Amy’s Square by Dominic Schunker (not on Goodreads or Amazon yet)

Followers by Megan Angelo

An electrifying story of two ambitious friends, the dark choices they make and the profound moment that changes the meaning of privacy forever.

Orla Cadden dreams of literary success, but she’s stuck writing about movie-star hookups and influencer yoga moves. Orla has no idea how to change her life until her new roommate, Floss―a striving, wannabe A-lister―comes up with a plan for launching them both into the high-profile lives they so desperately crave. But it’s only when Orla and Floss abandon all pretense of ethics that social media responds with the most terrifying feedback of all: overwhelming success.

Thirty-five years later, in a closed California village where government-appointed celebrities live every moment of the day on camera, a woman named Marlow discovers a shattering secret about her past. Despite her massive popularity―twelve million loyal followers―Marlow dreams of fleeing the corporate sponsors who would do anything, even horrible things, to keep her on-screen. When she learns that her whole family history is a lie, Marlow finally summons the courage to run in search of the truth, no matter the risks.

Followers traces the paths of Orla, Floss and Marlow as they wind through time toward each other, and toward a cataclysmic event that sends America into lasting upheaval. At turns wry and tender, bleak and hopeful, this darkly funny story reminds us that even if we obsess over famous people we’ll never meet, what we really crave is genuine human connection.

Lethal Nights (Brute Force: Book 3) by Lora Leigh

Ilya Dragonovich is no stranger to the dark side. As a safe-house owner for security agency Brute Force, Dragon knows that the battle line between good and evil runs through the heart of every man―and, sometimes, a beautiful woman…

Emma Jane Preston needs help. After her marriage crumbled, she believed she could get back to a normal, happy life. But her ex-husband moved among some shady characters, and now she needs the kind of protection that comes at a cost―one that only someone like Dragon can provide. But can Emma Jane trust this handsome, undercover operator to keep her safe when she is in danger of falling into the arms of the deeply seductive, fiery Dragon. . .and never letting go?

Shantatown by Cara Martin and C.K. Kelly Martin

Tanvi isn’t the girl of Misha’s dreams; she’s the girl from his nightmares. She has appeared in his chilling dreams before he even meets her; when he DOES meet her, he falls for her.

Their relationship turns stormy, bordering on abusive, and takes a dramatic turn when they are held captive by a group hoping to extract money from Tanvi’s wealthy family.

But there is something more sinister at work, and the kidnappers and their victims find themselves struggling for survival as a supernatural force from Misha’s nightmares makes itself known in the real world.

B & E Ever After (Fairy Tale Quartet: Book 3) by Linda Kage

B & E Ever After 
by Linda Kage 
(Fairy Tale Quartet, #3) 
Publication date: September 16th 2019
Genres: Adult, Fairy Tales, Retelling, Romance

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Book Synopsis:

A contemporary Hansel and Gretel Romance.

Gretel, er, I mean, Gabriella Salazar finds temptation and desperation to be too great and breaks into a wicked witch’s—uh, that is—a pretentious, rich woman’s condo, only to discover she’s not the only one with a B & E fetish. The twist is that the mysterious, handsome Hansel to her Gretel who has also stolen into the same apartment is anything but brotherly, and the two strangers find themselves lip-locked before the evening is over. Now Gabby and her new, aggravating accomplice must get crafty and work together to free themselves and everyone they hold dear from a mad woman’s clutches.

But breaking and entering never ends with a happily ever after…right?


Excerpt:

“Give me the tissues.”

I looked up in alarm. Oh shit, was he going to prevent me from taking anything? Why hadn’t I considered that possibility?

Probably because he’d just covered for me to his mother, and he had his own unknown ulterior motive for breaking into her house.

God, I was so stupid for blindly trusting him.

But then he opened his jacket, flashing me the insides. “I can probably hide them here.”

My mouth fell open. “You…” I shook my head. “Wait, you’re going to help me?”

He met my gaze, dead serious, no longer arrogant or sarcastic. “Why not? You worked your ass off for these.” Then he lifted one eyebrow until it arched in that snarky little bent I was becoming all-too familiar with. “Isn’t that how you put it?”

Oh, wow.

For the first time since meeting him, his acerbic manner didn’t grate on my last nerve. I just blinked at him, beginning to see a vague glimpse of the man beneath. And I realized it was all a front. He expertly hid his true self behind taunting barbs and haughty expressions. There was more to him than the asshole he tried to convince people he was.

How incredibly unusual.

He motioned toward my stolen goodies with one finger. “The tissues would be in that rectangular-shaped cardboard box right there,” he explained unnecessarily, having way too much fun talking down to me.

Damn, he was really good at playing the sarcastic jerk. Except this time, I saw the compassion behind his supercilious ruse.

“Uh…” Shaking my head to clear it because I was still discombobulated by this turn of events, I grabbed the tissues without hissing at him for his rude crack and I handed them over, murmuring, “Sorry. Here.”

He frowned at me in confusion, then tipped his head to the side as his eyes narrowed distrustfully. But even as he took the tissues, he added, “The soup too. You can probably conceal the soda in your front hoodie pouch, if it’s the only thing in there.”

He had a point. Nodding, I removed the can from my hoodie’s pocket. “Okay. Thank you.”

The thank you actually made him rear his face back in shock. This time, he refused to take the can from me, just eyed it as if I was offering him poison instead. “What the fuck is wrong with you?” he hissed.

“What do you mean?” Lowering my voice, I gaped at him. “Nothing’s wrong with me.”

I thrust the chicken noodle soup at him again. Why didn’t he just take the damn can before his mother showed up in the closet too, wondering why the hell we were taking so long?

He glanced toward the opening of the closet as well before turning back to me and whispering harshly, “You’re acting weird.”

“Oh my God.” My eyebrows shot sky high. “You’ve known me five fucking minutes. How do you know what my weird is? And besides, this is frankly a weird, super unreal situation. How else am I supposed to act?”

My irritated answer, along with the scowl I sent him, seemed to settle him again. His shoulders relaxed and his features lost their alert confusion.

“Well, your compliance was at odds with the first four minutes and forty-five seconds of our association,” he explained.

Wow, he didn’t respond well to politeness at all, did he?

But compliance? Did he seriously just call me compliant? Way to make me sound like a submissive little lap poodle.

Maybe his pomposity wasn’t entirely an act after all. He was probably a genuine asshole with just a small side serving of kind.

Narrowing my eyes, I bit out from between gritted teeth, “You were helping me. I was being grateful. But don’t worry; I’m over it now.”

“Good,” he bit out. “We don’t have time for that bullshit, anyway.”


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Linda writes romance fiction from YA to adult, contemporary to fantasy. Most Kage stories lean more toward the lighter, sillier side with a couple meaningful moments thrown in. Focuses more on entertainment value and emotional impact.

Published since 2010. Went through a 2-year writing correspondence class in children’s literature from The Institute of Children’s Literature. Then graduated with a Bachelors in Arts, English with an emphasis in creative fiction writing from Pittsburg State University.

Now she lives with hubby, two daughters, cat Holly, and nine cuckoo clocks in southeast Kansas, USA. Farm girl. Parents were dairy farmers. Was youngest of eight. Big family. Day job as a cataloging library assistant.

Harry Potter House Gryffindor, Patronus White Stallion, character match Hagrid. Supernatural Team Dean. Game of Thrones Team Jon Snow and Tyrion Lannister. The Walking Dead Team Daryl. Outlander Team Jamie Fraser. Teen Wolf Team Stiles. Avenger Team Thor…or Hulk (can’t decide). Justice League Team Flash. Arrow Team Stephen Amell. Stranger Things obsessed. Heard Laurel, not Yanny.

Started out reading with the Baby-Sitters Club. Then moved to Sandra Brown, Linda Howard, Julie Garwood, and LaVyrle Spencer in high school. Now all over the place with her romance reading tastes.

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