Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year!!

Waves of Fiction would like to wish everyone a very Happy New Year. We hope that 2015 brings you all lots of love, good health, happiness and awesome reads! Happy New Year!

Copyright: olenka / 123RF Stock Photo

Blog Review: The Darkest Part by Trisha Wolfe

Publication Date: December 1st 2013
Purchase Link: Free on Amazon starting January 1-5th 

About the book:

Pressing the boundaries of both the psyche and the heart, Sam and Holden embark on a dangerous journey that will test the limits of love.

Sam Wintry's life used to be almost perfect. She was engaged to her childhood best friend and high school sweetheart, Tyler Marks, planning an amazing cross-country honeymoon during her college break. But after a hit-and-run leaves her in ruin, she begins seeing Tyler's fractured, ghostly presence, and her family believes she's losing her mind. Not until she completes their journey, stopping along the way to scatter Tyler's remains, will Tyler be able cross over. Sam ready for him to leave her?

When the black sheep of the Marks' family, Holden Marks, returns to check on Tyler's case, Sam convinces him to give her his brother's ashes. Despite their shaky history, she needs, he owes it to Sam and his brother. What she doesn't count on is Holden's relentlessness to go on the trip.

On the road, Holden realizes just how unhinged Sam has become. Dealing with her psychosis forces him to confront his dark past, making it harder to keep secrets hidden that should remain buried. Especially from Sam, the only woman he's ever loved. And as Sam starts to unravel the truth, she begins to question if the brother she's unwillingly falling for again is in an even darker place than her.

My Thoughts:
The Darkest Part was a second chance romance full of emotions, passion, and a slowly unraveling mystery.  It was an enthralling and haunting read!

Samantha submerges into deep depression and darkness after losing her fiancé, Tyler in a tragic accident.  The future she thought she had is forever gone and what’s worse is it seems Tyler’s ghost takes up visiting Sam, unable or unwilling to move on.  Or is he?  Could it be that overwhelming sadness has fractured Sam’s mental health or is Sam really having ghostly visitations?  In order to help both her and Tyler move on, Sam plans to take the roadtrip/honeymoon they had planned out before Tyler died.  Unfortunately, his older brother Holden forces his way on the trip and with their tumultuous past it won’t be smooth sailing.

The Darkest Part was a story of grief and mending.  Sam and Holden discover vital details about Tyler that shed light on his death and their combined relationships.  Some of these discoveries were hurtful, but Holden and Sam helped each other through the pain. I adored seeing Holden and Sam work on these things together because it helped them heal from the past, set miscommunications right and reinstall their romance, which should’ve been so long ago.   

It pained Holden to see Sam so shaken by Tyler’s death.  He doesn’t think there’s any way she’s actually seeing Tyler’s ghost, but events and some of Sam’s knowledge put doubts in his mind. Could she really be seeing Tyler’s spirit?  If not, Sam is close to really losing it and Holden is damned if he’s going to let that happen.  Sam has always been a vibrant, beautiful woman in Holden’s opinion, even if he did wreck things with her years ago. Holden yearns to have a future with Sam, but that can’t happen until they work out the issues and mystery surrounding Tyler’s life and death.

I adored this darkly passionate tale!  I was on the edge of my seat to figure out what exactly happened with Tyler, Holden and Sam.  It was obvious to me that Sam and Tyler’s romance wasn’t as firm as it should’ve been considering they were supposed to get married.  Sam and Holden’s relationship, as they embark on their road-trip is adversarial, at least on Sam’s part, and I enjoyed seeing the walls and bitter feelings melt away into a passionate, all-consuming need for one another.  It was a slow and fiery build!

Trisha Wolfe weaved together a compelling, dark, and mysterious tale with a satisfying second chance romance.  I plan on reading the next in the series: Losing Track very soon!  

As a huge bonus, this moving story will be free on Amazon for a limited time: January 1-5! Be sure to grab yourself a copy! 

4 Suns

The series:

The Darkest Part (Living Heartwood, #1)  Losing Track (Living Heartwood, #2)

The Darkest Part (Book 1) – Amazon / Goodreads
Losing Track (Book 2) – Amazon / Goodreads
Fading Out (Book 3) – Amazon (pre-order) / Goodreads
Bad Road (Book 4) – Goodreads (Coming 2015)

About the author:
From an early age, Trisha Wolfe dreamed up fantasy worlds and characters and was accused of talking to herself. Today, she lives in South Carolina with her family and writes full time, using her fantasy worlds as an excuse to continue talking to herself.

For more information on Trisha Wolfe and her works, please visit:

To be the first to hear about new releases and sale events, sign up for Trisha Wolfe's Newsletter:

Connect with Trisha Wolfe:
Newsletter Website Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Monday, December 29, 2014

Review: Living with Regret (Rain #3) by Lisa De Jong

Living with Regret (Rain #3) by Lisa De Jong
Published October 11th 2014 (first published October 7th 2014)
I had my whole life mapped out. Perfect guy. Perfect friends. Everything was exactly the way I wanted it.

That was until that night--the one I can’t remember. It’s all my fault, and now the memories are all I have left of him. Of us.

My guilt drowns me until Sam Shea steps back into my life and helps me to the surface. He slowly opens my heart and crawls deep inside before I even realize what’s happening. I know I don’t deserve him.

While I’m trying to get used to my new life, pieces of that night slowly start to come back to me. Lies and secrets shatter everything I thought I knew.

Maybe I’m not the only one living with regret. 

My Thoughts
"The world is a beautiful place if you open your eyes to it. Sometimes ugliness steps in front of you, though, and you have to walk around it for the color and light to come into view again."

Living With Regret by Lisa DeJong is the final installment in the When It Rains series. From book one, I’ve been hooked on these characters that easily grabbed hold of my heart and attention. They each uniquely took me on an emotional journey that was heart-rending and hopeful for the three main characters.

From book one, I was eager to jump into Rachel’s story because it was evident early on in the series that something tragic happened to both her and Cory, and I was curious how the characters in this series would react and adjust to the tragedy that took place in this book. I think it was smart to save Rachel’s story for last because of all the ancillary events taking place in the background. I enjoyed revisiting with Kate, but I have to say I missed Emery in this novel. I would have liked to hear a snippet or two of how she was doing. However, having Kate weave in and out of the story made it more heartfelt and enjoyable.

In this installment of Living With Regret, Rachel suffers a tragic loss which is revealed in the first pages of the book. When she begins her journey toward recovery, an old friend named Sam Shea comes to her to help guide her through the darkness she seems to constantly stumble upon. Their relationship started at a very young age, but they eventually fell apart when Rachel started dating Cory and went on to college.

As the novel progresses, we witness the struggle of her recovery and I have to say, she tugged at my heart the entire time. I felt her loss and confusion, mainly because of the flawless narrative DeJong used to tell her tale. I appreciated the fact that there was a constant mystery to the day that changed Rachel’s life. As a reader, I had to work toward the truth, which wasn’t revealed until the final chapters. A small part of me predicted the outcome, but it still had an element of shock once everything unfolded.

Overall, I enjoyed Rachel and Sam’s story. I felt they blended perfectly as a pair and their ending was hopeful and hard-earned. The When It Rains series was both captivating and emotional, which was perfect for my current reading mood. Great series that included a cast I won’t soon forget.
4 Suns

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!!

The Waves of Fiction Team would like to wish our fellow readers a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. We hope all of your stockings were filled with reading fun, whether it be eBook gifts cards, books, eReaders... everything and anything that will fill your days with awesome reading adventures.

Copyright: alexraths / 123RF Stock Photo

Monday, December 22, 2014

Review: Changing Forever (Rain #2) by Lisa De Jong

Changing Forever (Rain #2) by Lisa De Jong
Published June 24th 2014 (first published June 20th 2014)
I’ve always let my past dictate my future, letting it paint a picture of exactly what I don’t want to be. Where I don’t want to end up.

Drake Chambers is as arrogant as I am stubborn. A college quarterback, a national star. I thought he was just another one of those guys … the type every girl should stay away from, but he’s carrying more than the weight of the football team on his shoulders.

He unravels the feelings and beliefs I’ve held onto for so long.

I thought we had it all figured out. Two people who’d finally found their happily ever after, but the past always has a way of sneaking into the present.
With one decision, everything changes … forever.
My Thoughts

Two different people.
Two different worlds.
Two different dreams.

Wow! What an emotional rollacoster that was! I knew I wanted to dive into Drake Chambers and Emery White’s story when I got a glimpse of their turmoltuous relationship in After the Rain. There was a significant reveal in that book that something went horribly wrong with these two, so I immediately jumped into their novel Changing Forever, and I finished it too quickly! This book was filled with raw emotion, definite chemistry and heart break all around. Exactly what I’ve been in the mood for lately.

Drake is Southern Iowa State’s star quarterback. He has a broken past and knows that the only way he can give his mom and two sisters any chance at a good life is if he lands a pro-football contract after college. School comes in second when it comes to his primary focus revolving around his football dreams. However, when he meets Emery, who is attending the university on a full-ride academic scholarship, he begins to question what part of that dream really makes him happy. When they are paired up to complete a project in one of their classes, their relationship is anything but easy.

After constant starts and stops because of Drake’s hesitations and Emery’s solid walls of protection, they finally give in to their feelings and realize that their romance is explosive.

...when you take goodness, add fire and gasoline, it fucking burns...
What ensues is a heated relationship that’s filled with emotional moments, tragic reveals and a crash landing that leaves them both broken and lost.

Overally, I loved Drake and Emery’s story. There were so many moments that I hoped Emery would just walk away, and that baffled me because I really liked Drake. I think I just didn’t like them together... at the time. However, that all changed at the twist of the story and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I love when a book changes my feelings about how I want the outcome to unravel and Changing Forever did exactly that. Let me just say... The epilogue... oh my!! I loved that final touch. Perfect ending for a couple of characters I came to adore! Changing Forever was emotional, hopeful with a dash of drama. Just how I like it!!
5 Suns

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Review: After the Rain (Rain #1.5) by Lisa De Jong

After the Rain (Rain #1.5) by Lisa De Jong
Published December 11th 2013 by Lisa De Jong
A novella follow-up to When It Rains.

The last few years have been my best and my worst. Now I’m learning to move on after my greatest heartbreak of all.

I’m in college with the guy I’ve loved since I was just a kid, but when two people have the history we do, there are always obstacles to overcome. They say love conquers all, and it's time to find out how true that really is.

There’s life after the heartbreak and pain, but will it be what I've always dreamed of? 
My Thoughts
“Fear keeps people from doing things they want to do, and when they aren’t doing what they want to do, they’re not as happy as they could be.”

SPOILER!! If you haven’t read the first book, this story will be a bit spoiler-ish so proceed with caution.

After the Rain by Lisa De Jong was a wonderful continuation of Kate and Beau’s story! I enjoyed getting more of a perspective from Beau since he played a smaller role in the first book, but ended as a significant character when it was complete. To hear his voice in After the Rain was pure bliss!

In this second novel, we get to follow Kate and Beau immediately following the emotional storm that took place in When It Rains. This sequel is a second chance for Kate and Beau. They’ve been friends since they were five, and after Kate’s tragic experience in book one, they pursue a romance that just feels right.

Beau was a perfect balance to Kate’s stormy recovery. The love he had for her felt real and deep. I enjoyed his alpha moments because he was never overbearing and always complemented that with a hint of emotional truth. He was perfection.

“You’re the one who makes me a better person. I want to be the best for you.” ~Beau

I fell for Kate in book one, but this second installment re-cemented my feelings for this strong, yet vulnerable character. She went After the Rain was a rewarding experience. I enjoyed her honest revelations in this novel, especially when it involved her feelings for Beau.

“You loved me when I pushed you away. You loved me when I was lost. You loved me when you didn’t even know if you were going to get a chance with me. It takes true love to do that.” ~Kate

Overall, their story was amazing from beginning to end. Reading an epilogue is usually my favorite part of a book I truly enjoyed because I get to glimpse into the characters’ lives after their ending, so to have another installment was absolutely enjoyable.
5 Suns

Friday, December 19, 2014

Waves of Fiction 2014 Reading Wrap-up & Giveaway

Wow! Can you believe how quickly 2014 came and went?!? This year has been a fantastic reading adventure for us here at Waves of Fiction, so we wanted to take a moment to share a few stand-out books we came across in 2014.

Several of us on The Waves of Fiction Team decided to get together to share our favorite and not so favorite books of 2014. But that’s not all!! One lucky winner will get the chance to win one of the books we’ve spotlight here, so take a look and be sure to review the giveaway details below!
Top 3 Favorites (All Genres)
After I Do by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Me Before You by Jo Jo Moyes
Summer Girl, Winter Boy by Barbara Elsborg

Favorite Series Installment
Ball & Chain by Abigail Roux

Greatest Disappointment - Because of High Expectations
Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

Favorite Debut
I couldn't find one from my list.

Favorite Female Main Character
Summer Dey from Summer Girl, Winter Boy

Favorite Male Main Character
Jai Winter from Summer Girl, Winter Boy

Favorite Book cover
Archer's Voice by Mia Sheridan

Most Interesting Book Title
Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher

Most Anticipated
Take by Ella Frank

Top 3 Favorites (All Genres)
Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover
Landline by Rainbow Rowell
Goodnight June by Sarah Jio

Favorite Series Installment
Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

Greatest Disappointment - Because of High Expectations
Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher (it kills me to put this one out there because I LOVE her. I almost don't want to even mention it, lol.)

Favorite Debut Author
This is actually a book not published until next year - not sure if I can add it? The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. This is the only debut author I've read this year, so far.

Favorite Female Main Character
Eleanor in Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

Favorite Male Main Character
Miles in Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

Favorite Book cover
Goodnight June by Sarah Jio

Most Interesting Book Title
Goodnight June by Sarah Jio (because of the play on Goodnight Moon :)

Most Anticipated
Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

Snow-Kissed (Snow Queen #1) Mean Streak The Will (Magdalene, #1)

Top 3 Favorites (All Genres)
Snow-Kissed by Laura Florand
Mean Streak by Sandra Brown
The Will by Kristen Ashley

Favorite Series Installment
Murder of Crows (The Others #2) by Anne Bishop

Greatest Disappointment - Because of High Expectations
Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher

Favorite Debut
Archetype by M.D. Waters

Favorite Female Main Character
Meg Corbyn from Written in Red & Murder of Crows

Favorite Male Main Character
"The Guy" in Mean Streak (he's not named for much of the read!)

Favorite Book cover
It Happened One Wedding by Julie James

Most Interesting Book Title
How to Run With A Naked Werewolf by Molly Harper

Most Anticipated
Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher

 Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy, #1) The Beautiful Ashes (Broken Destiny #1) Ball & Chain (Cut & Run, #8)
Top 3 Favorites (All Genres)
Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews
The Beautiful Ashes by Jeaniene Frost
Ball & Chain by Abigail Roux

Favorite Series Installment
Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

Greatest Disappointment - Because of High Expectations
Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher (I am still very upset about this remains a very touchy subject with me)

Favorite Debut
I don't think I read a debut author this year...

Favorite Female Main Character
Nevada Baylor-Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

Favorite Male Main Character
Tie between Mad Rogan from Burn for Me and Ty from Ball & Chain

Favorite Book cover
Unravel by Calia Read

Most Interesting Book Title
Wallbanger by Alice Clayton

Most Anticipated
Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews--( I do see a trend here XD)
We hope you've enjoyed our 2014 Reading Wrap-up. And now for the fun stuff!! We are giving away the chance to win one of our favorite books that we've featured. The winner can either choose a paperback or eBook, not to exceed US$10 from US Amazon, US Barnes & Noble or The Book Depository.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Review: Daisies in the Canyon by Carolyn Brown

Daisies in the Canyon by Carolyn Brown
Publication Date: December 16th 2014 by Montlake Romance
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble  

About the book: 

She’s here to claim her birthright…
Ex-army sergeant Abby Malloy feels no loss after the father she never knew passes away. Still, part of Ezra Malloy’s ranch belongs to her, and if the stubborn blonde has to live there for a year with two half-sisters who are strangers to her, so be it. Nothing could stand in the way of her inheritance…except a local sheriff wrapped in snug blue jeans and a sexy grin.
He’s here to claim her heart…
Cooper Wilson, the local sheriff and rancher next door, is having his world turned upside down. Abby is all straight talk and sweet, lush curves—the kind of woman who gets under his skin in just the right way. Whereas Cooper has roots in Palo Duro Canyon, Abby’s got wings. But he knows she belongs here. If she can stop running from her past, he’ll happily lead her to a brighter future, one hot cowboy kiss at a time.

My Thoughts:
I just loved this cowboy romance!  Daisies in the Canyon made me want to sell my house, buy a ranch and move out to the country! With my own sexy cowboy to help, of course!

Abby Malloy has just come out of the army and got word the father she never laid eyes on, Ezra Malloy, died and left her part of his ranch.  Abby can’t think of her father without bitterness and anger bubbling up and who could blame her? The man gave her mother divorce papers and a settlement once Abby was born, finding out she was a girl.  Ezra wanted a boy, an heir. Turns out she’s not the only one who suffered this rejection. Ezra did this to two other women and Abby meets the sisters she never knew she had, Shiloh and Bonnie, at his funeral. Abby has no intention of getting close to them or to Cooper, the sheriff/rancher/neighbor that shows up at every turn, setting her insides on fire with desire.

To inherit the Malloy Ranch the sisters must live there for a full year.  All three are determined to stay and learn ranching, but it is not an easy job. Fortunately, the girls are not afraid of hard work, something that Ezra probably didn’t count on, and they gradually become close.  

I adored the developing sister relationship and the support they supplied each other.  Their circumstances were actually set up so that if they didn’t get along it would be more profitable for them in the long run, but their sisterly relationship ranked above greed. They all had a common hurt: Ezra, so they bonded over those feelings. Respect and love grew quickly.  I have to say that Ezra’s decision to fling off his offspring just because they were girls angered me! The hurt of this rejection would have to cut deep, but I can’t help but think he was the loser in the end.  The girls were all amazing women in their own right, and he missed out on knowing and loving them.

The romance between Cooper and Abby was a total win for me, and had me smiling and laughing throughout the book! They fell into lust quickly when they couldn’t keep their hands off each other, but then Abby and Cooper took a step back and settled in to take things slow, as friends. Flirty, fun friends with an insane amount of attraction! Their romance was filled with humor that had me giggling more than a few times:

“Abby, you are drunk.”
“I’m not drunk.  Do you need glasses?  I told you I can hold my liquor.”
“Why would I need glasses?”
“To see that I’m not drunk. Did I tell you that the bull rang the doorbell and that I think you are sexy and it would be easy to fall in love with you and good night, Cooper?”

Cooper was smart to back off, sensing Abby’s cold feet. I think he would’ve spooked her off if he didn’t put the brakes on.  Instead he teased, flirted, and they got to know each other while the stoking embers into a raging fire.  I appreciated there was no third party thrown in for drama, just realistic concerns that could plague any normal couple.  

With Abby’s story happily complete, there were hints of a coming romance for Shiloh.  I had suspicions about one for Bonnie, too, but I suspect Shiloh’s romance will be next.  At least I hope so. I didn’t see any plans for a book two or three in the works. 
Ms. Brown captured my heart and my cowgirl-soul with her heartfelt cowboy romance!  For anyone who dreams of living on a working ranch, open pastures, beautiful sunsets, close knit friends and neighbors, Daisies in the Canyon is a perfect fit!

After reading and loving Daisies in the Canyon I went back and purchased Long, Hot Texas Summer which features the second chance romance between Loretta and Jackson, Malloy Ranch neighbors who show up in this story.  It was $2 on Amazon and I added the audio version for an additional $1.99 which is a steal of a deal!

4.5 Suns

Connect with Carolyn Brown:

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Release Blitz & Giveaway: Bold Tricks by Karina Halle

I'm excited to be part of the Release Blitz for Bold Tricks because this series was awesome! The last book in the series has a beautiful new cover and is now being released in print! As part of my stop I have my review, an excerpt as well as TWO giveaways!

Print Publication Date: December 16th 2014 by Grand Central Publishing

About the book:

The Faster They Live, the Harder They Fall . . .Raised by con artists, Ellie Watt has a lot of crazy childhood memories-but none crazier than being scarred with acid by the demented crime boss Travis Raines. Now Ellie is a full-grown woman who lives for revenge, and Travis is a full-blown drug lord who kills for pleasure. The sadistic bastard has kidnapped her good friend Gus as well as her mother, whom he's been holding as prized possessions in his heavily guarded lair. And Ellie has only one chance in hell of getting them out alive-using two dangerous men who love her to death . . .

One is Camden McQueen, a talented tattoo artist who's made a permanent mark on Ellie's heart. The other is Javier Bernal, her fiery ex-lover who's busted more than a few heads in his time. From the crime-ridden streets of Mexico City to the predatory jungles of Honduras, this unlikely trio forms an uneasy alliance in the deadliest game of all-a gun-blazing battle to the finish that will pit enemy against enemy and lover against lover. And Ellie must choose the right man to trust . . . or die.

My Thoughts:
Buckle up kiddies!! You are in for one hell of a ride! AMAZING!! Love this series, love this ending! It was an action packed adrenaline rush!

Bold Tricks picks up where we left off in Shooting Scars with Ellie, Camden, and Javier working together to get Gus, and maybe Ellie’s mother, back from the evil drug lord Travis. Can we trust Javier to come through, especially now that Camden is in the picture? Also, Ellie feels awful for giving in to self-doubt and Javier in the previous book. Ellie knows that she might have ruined any chance at future happiness with Camden and the uneasiness continues between them, but she’s unwilling to let go so easily.

How could I explain that my body got what it needed at the time but my heart was fooled?

I’m always nervous to read the final book in a series that I love for fear of disappointment. It wasn’t necessary with Bold Tricks and I have to say I’m thrilled with how things played out. Not only does the non-stop action and adventure keep you eagerly clicking through the pages, but all the relationship drama has you riveted as well.

Let’s be honest, the romance was the sticking point for me and I was not disappointed! Realistic feelings of hurt and betrayal, but also longing and lust between all three characters brought this story to life. There were steamy, passionate scenes, and some surprising declarations from all three characters!

“You own my heart. Please let me have yours.”

“I love you,” he said, his voice gruff. “And I’ll have you. Keep you. Own you. You belong to me, only to me, from now on.”

We get to know the main characters a little better: their motivations, weaknesses, and strengths, and I have to say, I was drawn in, and fascinated by every one of them. Ellie was frustrating to me in the first installment, but as I’ve got to know her, I understand where she’s coming from and have come to love her, mistakes and all. Camden is just such a mix of contradictions: nerdy and sometimes unsure of himself one minute and then HOT-tattooed-up-sex-god in the next!! Oh my stars! Javier, well that man just oozes dangerous charm, and the promise of a very naughty time! Poor, poor, Ellie, I wish I had such decisions.

Karina Halle wrote a brilliant ending to an addictive and memorable series, and I’m a little sad to say goodbye!
5 Suns


The motel room was a lot nicer than the one we stayed at before. Sort of a Best Western, middle-ground quality of place. No roaches on the floors, no geckos on the wall. Shit mattresses, I discovered as I pounded my fist on the bed, but I didn’t care.
Camden had just put the final box on my bed, Violetta sprawled out on hers in a state of drug-induced euphoria, when I noticed Javier lingering at the doorway.
“I’m going to be meeting Dom in about twenty minutes,” Javier said to me. “Is that enough time for you to get ready?”
I frowned and he quickly added, “You know he’ll want you there, if this is going to get anywhere. I figured you might want to shower and look nice.”
He rapped his fingers along the doorframe, his mouth opening as if to say something else, then he turned and walked off.
Camden eyed me. “I’m going with you.”
“You might be kind of drunk, Camden,” I told him, though the determination in his voice warmed me like the finest cognac.
“I’ve never felt better,” he said, enunciating each word. His eyes, my god they were still such a clear fucking blue, even in the pallid light of the hotel room. They bore into me with such startling clarity, sending shivers down my back like trailing fingertips. He would be coming with me.
I wished he’d be coming in me. A vision of us in this hotel room, alone, him nailing me to the bed, the headboard banging, slammed into my head.
“Are you okay with that?” he asked.
I suppressed the thought, the flare of heat between my legs, and smiled quickly. “Yes, of course.”
Meanwhile Violetta’s head flopped to the side, her arm still bound to her stiffly in the sling, and started snoring lightly. I motioned to her. “Do you think it’s safe to leave her here?”
He watched her for a few moments, blinking a few times, before saying, “I think she needs to sleep it off.” He went and sat down on my bed. “I’ll be here when you get out.”
I grabbed my bag of clothes I had brought out of the car and brought it into the bathroom. I had a quick shower, trying to rub off all the grim – both real and imagined – with the flimsy hotel soap, then picked through my clothes. Everything that had been in my trunk was musty and wrinkled, some even dirty. I had a packet of unopened (and decidedly unsexy) Hanes underwear, a bra, another pair of jeans, a pair of gladiator sandals that I thought were dressy enough, a pair of Timberland hiking boots, a plain white tee shirt, a couple of wife-beaters, a coral-colored blouse, a plaid shirt, and a light blue tank dress that went to the ground. I wasn’t exactly known for my fashion sense and even with the cherry blossoms covering the scars on my leg, bringing me beauty that I didn’t have before, I didn’t see myself branching out anytime soon. Dressing up in my old clothes for Javier hadn’t exactly helped either.
I slipped on the tank dress, opting to go commando for the evening, and put on the sandals. I looked at myself in the mirror. Once again, I felt like a different person was staring back at me. This me, this Ellie, was tired and hardened. I rubbed the residue mascara away from under my eyes and applied a new coat. My skin was brown from the sun now and I didn’t need much else.
When I came out of the bathroom, Camden straightened up on the bed. I felt strangely shy in front of him, especially as his eyes trailed up and down the length of me.
“Do I look okay?” I asked him, feeling the need to say something. “I mean, if you can see me, that is.”
He bit his lip and stared, a multitude of emotions flashing through his eyes, too fast for me to pick up on each individual one. I thought I saw lust in there – maybe that’s what I wanted to see.
When he still didn’t say anything, I walked over to the dresser where I had my clutch purse left over from the other night at Travis’s and rifled through it for my lip stuff. His silence at my back was a heavy weight, laden with too many uncertainties between us. It was eating at me, burning through me, rendering me with a lead heart. There were so many things I had to focus on, to worry about, fucking impossible things, and yet I needed him to tell me I looked beautiful. I needed him to tell me I was something to him.
I heard him get off the bed and walk toward me, that heaviness, that warmth that he brought with his bones, teased at my back. He stopped, close enough to touch me, and I was about to turn around, perhaps to do something foolish, when he crouched down.
“How is my art?”
His hands found my leg, one of them lifting the hem of my dress, the other slowly moving over the cherry blossom tattoo. I sucked in my breath, holding completely still, trying to contain my nerves that were firing wildly as his fingers ran along the ridges of the ink. He touched me gently over every vine, leaf and petal, until I had to supress a shaky moan that that tried to escape from my lips.
“It feels fine,” I said softly when I found my voice.
“It looks beautiful,” he said.
“I had a beautiful artist,” I told him. I turned at the waist and look down at him, my blue dress glowing in his tanned hand, his other one placed firmly around my calf, his strong fingers imparting heat that sunk deep. He was looking up at me, lips parted slightly.
I couldn’t take a second more of this.
I turned and dropped to the ground, my knees rubbing against his.
I grabbed his face, his rough stubble pressing into my palms, and kissed him.
There was surprise for a second, a hesitation, a pulse that refused to beat on. Then Camden kissed me back, his soft lips enveloping mine, his mouth opening to give me life. He put his hand behind my head, holding it there with power and control.
My heart was an elevator car, the cable suddenly snapped, and I was freefalling and falling and falling as his lips and tongue and hot, wet mouth took away every inch of my resolve. The more he kissed me, the deeper and longer we found each other, the thirstier I got for him. I felt like if we stopped, I would die, empty on the inside and forever longing.

About Karina Halle:
Karina Halle is a former travel writer and music journalist and the USA Today Bestselling author of Love, in English, The Artists Trilogy, and other wild and romantic reads. She lives in a 1920s farmhouse on an island off the coast of British Columbia with her husband and her rescue pup, where she drinks a lot of wine, hikes a lot of trails and devours a lot of books.
Connect with Karina Halle:

The first rafflecopter is shared with all the blogs participating in the blitz.  The publisher has generously provided the entire Artist Trilogy to 10 lucky winners! The first giveaway is over. The second rafflecopter is exclusive to Waves of Fiction and is for one  Print Copy of Bold Tricks.  Both are open to US and Canadian residents only. Simply fill out the rafflecopters for a chance to win!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Release Day Launch Blitz & Giveaway: Kaleidoscope by Kristen Ashley

Hello readers! I'm thrilled to be part of the  Launch Day Blitz for the print version of Kaleidoscope by Kristen Ashley because I LOVED this story.  I'll be ordering my very own copy to sit along with my favorites on my bookshelf.  Below I have my review, an excerpt and not just one giveaway but TWO! So be sure to fill out both rafflecopters for a chance to win!

Print Publication Date: December 16th 2014 by Forever Mass Market

About the book:

KALEIDOSCOPE by Kristen Ashley (December 16, 2014; Forever Mass Market; $7.00)
When old friends become new lovers...anything can happen.
Sexy, gifted, and loyal, PI Jacob Decker is a tall, cool drink of perfection who had Emmanuelle Holmes at "hello." His relationship with Emme's best friend kept them apart for years, but things have changed. Now that a case has brought him to Gnaw Bone, Colorado, the road is wide open for Emme and Deck to explore something hotter and deeper than Emme dreamed possible. So why is she sabotaging the best thing that's ever happened to her?

It isn't easy to catch Deck off guard, but Emme does just that when she walks back into his life after nine long years. The curvy brunette had her charms back in the day, but now she's a bona fide knockout . . . and she wants to rekindle their friendship. Deck, however, wants more. Emme's always been the one; she excites Deck's body and mind like no other woman can. But a dark chapter from Emme's past overshadows their future together. Now only Deck can help her turn the page-if she'll let him . . .

My Thoughts:
Kaleidoscope is the sixth book in the Colorado Mountain series, a series I’ve come to love. Sweet Dreams(book #2) was my first Kristen Ashley book and it started my love affair with her writing. Seriously, she writes the best alpha men, and wonderfully independent, sassy, loveable heroines!

Jacob Decker or “Deck” as most people call him is someone we’ve met through the series, yet he was always a mysterious character. Deck is private for hire sort of detective/enforcer having earned a reputation of getting the job done. Because of this reputation he’s hired by the Gnaw Bone police department to help track down a ring of buglers that’s become a huge dangerous problem.

Being in Gnaw Bone, Deck runs into Emmanuelle Holmes, and she doesn’t look like the Emme he knew from nine years ago. She breathtakingly gorgeous! Deck was always attracted to her mind, they always tuned out the room and had intense, soul-deep conversations, but she was what he described as “sexless”. Plus, he was seriously dating her best friend Elsbeth at the time. Elsbeth didn’t care for Deck and Emme’s closeness, probably sensing the connection they shared.

“Lookin’ back, havin’ you back, I now know and I reckon you know, that’s the way it was. She was between us. She knew it too. And she didn’t like it. But it didn’t matter. My head was fucked so I couldn’t see clear of her and not doin’ that, I didn’t see you.”

But all that went out the window when Elsbeth broke things off with Deck and in turn Deck and Emme went their separate ways, too. Now seeing Emme he realizes what he lost, and laments all the years wasted not seeing what should’ve been: Deck and Emme together instead of Deck and Elsbeth. He’s not wasting time anymore.

Emme missed Deck, and so seeing him on the street she jumps at the chance to reconnect and get their friendship back. But trouble lurks, because not only is she involved with another man, Dane, who is not all he seems, but Emme has something dark in her past that’s about to rear its ugly head. No worries though, Deck is a determined man, and he’s not losing Emme after the light-bulb finally came on!

Emme was sweet, smart, and self-sufficient. Heck, this girl bought an old crumbling mansion and started fixing it up on her own, because she saw the beauty underneath. I love a woman who has the courage to go after what she wants.

Deck was lovely as well. He wasn’t the uber-alpha/caveman bossy. I'd still classify him as alph-male, he just wasn’t as hard headed or pushy as some of KA’s previous males. Deck was pretty reasonable. When he saw what he missed in Emme with Elsbeth in the way he immediately moved to rectify and take them on the path they should’ve been on years ago.

I loved this couple and the reasonable ways they dealt with problems. I love a romance based on friendship and one forged from something precious that was lost, as in the case of Deck and Emme.

There is usually a little danger and mystery in every Kristen Ashley book and this one is no exception. The initial details with Emme and her past may seem a little tame when you find out what happened but the reactions and damage it caused are not something to set aside so easily.

Kristen Ashley somehow always manages to make me cry in every single one of her stories. Dang it! She always brings out a range of strong emotions! The epilogue was amazing as usual!

Favorite Quote:
“You’re gonna share my bed, my home, my life, and build a family with me, Emmanuelle,” he told her, and her eyes opened, brighter now, tears again streaming. “That’s everything, baby.”

4.5 Suns


I dropped my leg so I was sitting cross-legged in the couch and leaned into him. “Honey, you remember everything so I don’t have to remind you I haven’t seen you in nine years. I dig it that we reconnected and I love having you back.” I again threw an arm out, this time toward him and back to me. “This is great. You and me spending time together, shooting the breeze. I missed that. And I get it that friends make gestures, but this is too much.”
His eyes warmed during this speech and he took his arms from the couch, bent his legs, leaned into them, and me, and put his elbows to his knees, never releasing my eyes.
“Baby, I want you warm and liquid. The first bein’ physically, the second bein’ financially. You stop payin’ so much for heat, you’ll have more money for the rest of the shit you gotta do.”
This made sense.
But he’d again called me “baby.”
And I needed to address that.
So I asked, “What is that?”
His head cocked and his eyebrows drew together. “What’s what?”
I drew in breath and on the exhale, stated, “You calling me baby.” Then I went on quickly, “Not that I don’t like it. It’s sweet. It’s just not…” I hesitated, “us.”
Something happened to his eyes, his face, his whole big body and that something made me brace at the same time it made my heartbeat escalate.
“You know what it is,” he said softly.
I didn’t.
“I don’t,” I shared.
His eyes stayed locked to mine and I knew him relatively well, or I used to. But even if we hadn’t been separated for years, I still would not have been forewarned to the fact he was about to blow my mind.
“Before, we had Elsbeth between us. My head was fucked about that, about her, and it took almost a decade to get it unfucked. Lookin’ back, havin’ you back, I now know and I reckon you know, that’s the way it was. She was between us. She knew it too. And she didn’t like it. But it didn’t matter. My head was fucked so I couldn’t see clear of her and not doin’ that, I didn’t see you.”
I knew my lips had parted. I also knew my eyes got big. And last, I had no clue what to say.
So I said nothing.
“Now she isn’t between us,” he finished.
It was then I knew what the “baby” business was.
I just had no idea how to react to it because I never considered it. He was beautiful. He was kind. He was smart. He was funny and interesting and affectionate.
But he was my best friend’s boyfriend.
That didn’t mean my mind didn’t go there in vague ways, not stupid enough to wish for something I could never have, just silently covetous of what Elsbeth had. And, because of all that he was and that Elsbeth had it, in the end, infuriated she threw it away. Angry enough to end an important friendship because of it.
Sitting there, all that was Jacob, and all that being spectacular sitting across from me, holding my eyes, I finally understood that the reason I was angry at my friend was because, in throwing Jacob away, she took him away from me.
And now I had him back, but also, he was saying I’d always had him a different way, we just didn’t go there and he was going to take us there.
Yes. I had no clue what to say but my body had a clue how to feel. Warm and there were a lot more tingles.
“Jacob—” I started on a whisper.
But he interrupted again.
“You saw me, asked me out to dinner that same night, no fuckin’ around. Since then, you’ve called twice for no reason except to connect, and, baby, before you freak that I noticed that and what it said, I’ll tell you, I’m fuckin’ glad you did and I’m also fuckin’ glad about what it said. The boyfriend you were on the fence about, you got off the fence in less than twenty-four hours after seein’ me again and decided to get shot of his ass. And you didn’t waste any time gettin’ me right where I am tonight. That is not friends reconnecting. You know it. So do I.”
“Don’t deny it.”
I shut my mouth.

About the Author: Kristen Ashley grew up in Brownsburg, Indiana, and has lived in Denver, Colorado, and the West Country of England. Thus she has been blessed to have friends and family around the globe. Her posse is loopy (to say the least) but loopy is good when you want to write.

Kristen was raised in a house with a large and multigenerational family. They lived on a very small farm in a small town in the heartland, and Kristen grew up listening to the strains of Glenn Miller, The Everly Brothers, REO Speedwagon, and Whitesnake. Needless to say, growing up in a house full of music and love was a good way to grow up.  And as she keeps growing up, it keeps getting better.

Connect with Kristen Ashley:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

The publisher has generously provided two giveaways: The first rafflecopter is for all the blogs participating, a SIGNED Set of The Colorado Mountain Series!  The second giveaway is exclusive to Waves of Fiction and it's one Print Copy of Kaleidoscope open to US and Canadian residents only.  Good luck!

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