Month: February 2014

Blog Tour: Rare and Precious Things by Raine Miller (review, top 10 best moments video, author spotlight & giveaways)

Title: RARE AND PRECIOUS THINGS
(The Blackstone Affair Book 4)
Author: RAINE MILLER
hosted by: The Book Avenue

The fourth part in the New York Times bestselling series, The Blackstone Affair: A bright beginning for two damaged souls fighting for their hard-won love, and the promise of a new hope to secure their happily ever after.
Fresh from an idyllic honeymoon along the Italian coast, the Blackstones prepare for the birth of their precious baby and the challenges of settling into a new home. But things get complicated when specters from the past reappear to threaten the very foundation of their relationship. Ethan and Brynne will have to fight harder than ever for each other. Rare and Precious Things is the story of two people who both need the other in order to be complete, but learn just how “rare” their brand of love is when they have to risk everything in order to hold onto it.
It’s common knowledge to all how I adore this couple. They are two of the most endearing characters I’ve ever encountered. They are so admirable, so real, and so human. The poignancy of their story made my heart ache in a happy and sad way, as I struggled with them through their self-doubts and fought the battle within to reclaim the faith they had in their love and each other. I held my breath as I watched the doubt and insecurity creep into their minds, tempered by the disappointments which life often brings, praying that they wouldn’t succumb, that their love and faith in each other would prevail.
Rare and Precious Things shows us the kind of romance that we all would love to have—totally committed, passionate, and loving. It’s a gentle, endearing story with even more endearing characters who have won our hearts since book 1 and now make us sigh with delight at their happy ending. 
Of all the stories about Ethan and Brynne, this is the one that touches me the most. It showcases their extraordinary, unshakable bond better than any of the stories before. Their relationship obviously isn’t traditional, but I truly admire them. They’ve only grown closer as the series continues and show maturity not only to their partnership but also within themselves. They are coming into their own, particularly Brynne and I was very impressed with her trying to mend the damage caused by her past and now moving on with her new life as a wonderful wife to Ethan and a doting mother to Peaches. She shows us how much she’s grown into a mature, secure person who now exhibits all of the goodness, positivity and forgiving heart; the qualities she’s always had, but now shine brighter than ever. It’s a real tribute to the idea that letting go of the past and all those excess baggage is the way to secure a happy existence in the future.
I would have to commend Ms. Miller and her magnificent mind. This story is so well written, logical, and clear. The characters as always are wonderfully formed and extremely easy to understand. It’s an extraordinary story and one that we will all do well to keep in mind. I was grasping for more and left in awe after reading it. I finished it with tear-stained cheeks ~ one of the best epilogues I have ever read. I was choking back more tears and couldn’t stop thinking about it. It’s like I could not turn my brain off. It made me think so much about how our decisions, even the most ordinary, can impact someone else’s life so deeply. It made me think about life, about how love can be so powerful, it makes you heal the wounds in the past, forgive those who have hurt you and then make you a totally different person…better person.
Raine Miller is at her best in this book. She proves simplicity and two great characters make for the best romances. I couldn’t have enjoyed it more.
This book perfectly sums up Ethan and Brynne’s relationship, Rare and Precious…

“Brynne was my life. The last piece of my puzzle that had finally completed me.”

1. When you are in the process of writing, do you have your storyline mapped out and you do your research of people, places, buildings, scenery, etc. based on that or have you ever written a scene in any of the books based solely on an image or picture you’ve come across and that image/picture spoke to you so profoundly that you incorporated a storyline into a book based on it?

I’ve written whole scenes because of a picture I’ve seen. An example of this is when a fan sent me a picture of a man with angel wings tattooed on his back and his baby sleeping on top. I loved it, so you will see that scene in Rare in Precious Things with Ethan and his _______. I do it all the time. In fact, the whole inspiration for the first book, NAKED, was because I found the image on Shutterstock one night and the idea for the story came into my head. Images are huge in giving me inspiration to write. I make Pinterest boards now for books while I am writing.

2. How long from concept to publishing?

Ten Months. I knew as I was finishing Eyes Wide Open that I really needed to do a fourth book in order to give Ethan and Brynne the complete resolution to their life together.

3. When you first knew of David Gandy and have you ever met him?

I knew of him over three years ago, and no, I have never met him. He did chat me a little and send me a birthday wish last year though. He is my muse for Ethan, and was from the first page I wrote about Mr. Blackstone.

4. Out of all your books, which one has been the most challenging to write?

That would be Rare and Precious Things. It was a challenge because when you are at the end of a story arc, everything must be resolved and tied together. You have to have reasons for the character’s behaviors and actions, their motivations have to make sense. Another difficulty is to give page time to all of the side characters that have been introduced into the story and the tangled web gets very big.

5. Living in the UK myself, made this book easier to read, envisioning the places, characters, Olympics etc, Why choose this place at this time for the books to be set in?

I am a certifiable Anglophile and I always have been. I really liked the idea of having an American heroine and a British hero, so the idea of setting up the story in that way appealed to me. I found out it appealed to many other women readers too!!! LOL Talking dirty in an English accent is pretty smokin’ hot I guess.

6. If you could be a character in any fictional book, who would you want to be and why?

Jane Whitcomb. Because she is loved by Vishous. Read Lover Unbound, by JR Ward if you have no idea what I am talking about.

7. When you started writing the books, did you have the idea for the historicals first or Naked?

I wrote the historicals first and knew the world in which they were set. So when I began writing Naked and Brynne was an art conservationist, I just used my fictional artist I had already created in my historical novel The Muse, which has yet to be published. I had so much fun doing the connections I continued to do it in every book, and will probably do it for every book I write from here on.

Raine Miller has been reading romance novels since she picked up that first Barbara Cartland book at the tender age of thirteen. And it’s a safe bet she’ll never stop, because now she writes them too! Granted Raine’s stories are edgy enough to turn Ms. Cartland in her grave, but to her way of thinking, a hot, sexy hero never goes out of fashion. A part-time teacher and writer of sexy romance stories every other chance she gets pretty much fills her days. She has a handsome prince of a husband, and two brilliant sons to pull her back into the real world if the writing takes her too far away. Her sons know she likes to write stories, but gratefully have never asked to read any, thank God! Raine loves to hear from readers and to chat about the characters in her books.

OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES
NAKED (BOOK 1)
Goodreads | Amazon US | B&N | Kobo 

ALL IN (BOOK 2)

EYES WIDE OPEN (BOOK 3)
CHERRY GIRL (BOOK 3.5)
Blackstone Affair spin-off, yet can be a standalone

Promo Post and Giveaway: Fifty First Times

Title: Fifty First Times
Authors: 

You always remember your first time…
Whether it’s the couple who decides not to go through with it, the two boys who finally aren’t ashamed, the newlyweds whose wedding night could very well be their last night together, the deaf pair who have no choice but to take body language to a new level–or, of course, the two young lovers fumbling and laughing, getting everything wrong. These are the memories that will never fade.
Join nineteen fantastic authors as they pull back the curtain and give you a peek inside that one intense moment in their characters’ lives when everything changes and nothing will ever be the same again.
Featuring stories from some of the hottest names in New Adult, Young Adult, and Romance including New York Times Bestselling authors J.Lynn/Jennifer Armentrout, Molly McAdams, Sophie Jordan, and Carrie Ryan.
NOTE: These stories are works of fiction. If you want to know about our first times, you’ll have to buy us a pet monkey first.

Blog Tour Schedule” Rare and Precious Things by Raine Miller

BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE
Feb 25th
Feb 26th
Feb27th
Feb 28th
Mar 1st
Mar 2nd
Mar 3rd
Mar 4th
Mar 5th
for questions, pls. contact us at

Book Review: Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover

Title: Maybe Someday
Author: Colleen Hoover

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Colleen Hoover, a passionate tale of friendship, betrayal, and romance—and the enchanting music that inspires one young woman to put her life back together.
At twenty-two years old, aspiring musician Sydney Blake has a great life: She’s in college, working a steady job, in love with her wonderful boyfriend, Hunter, and rooming with her good friend, Tori. But everything changes when she discovers Hunter cheating on her with Tori—and she is left trying to decide what to do next.
Sydney becomes captivated by her mysterious neighbor, Ridge Lawson. She can’t take her eyes off him or stop listening to the daily guitar playing he does out on his balcony. She can feel the harmony and vibrations in his music. And there’s something about Sydney that Ridge can’t ignore, either: He seems to have finally found his muse. When their inevitable encounter happens, they soon find themselves needing each other in more ways than one…
From the author of the New York Times bestsellers Slammed, Point of Retreat, Hopeless, This Girl, and Losing Hope, Maybe Someday is destined to become another bestseller and long-lasting fan favorite.
Griffin Peterson and Colleen Hoover discuss their upcoming project, Maybe Someday. 
Download Griffin Peterson’s “I’m In Trouble” here:https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/im-…
Singles “Hold On To You” and “Maybe Someday” by Griffin Peterson 
available for download via iTunes
Pre-Order your copy of Maybe Someday from these retailers:

“We try so hard to hide everything we’re really feeling from those who probably need to know our true feelings the most.”

Slammed is to poetry as Maybe Someday is music. Nuff said! Word and musical interaction explode on the pages as Colleen does what she does best…completely and utterly rock your world. 
The twist comes fast. Wait for it…yep there it is! I would love to live in Hoover’s mind for one day! Creative genius, word master, soul crusher, over shadowed by passionate word flow full of sentiment, angst, and a huge helping of hope. 

“Words can sometimes have a far greater effect on a heart than a kiss.”

Sydney is drawn to Ridge’s melody as Ridge is smitten with the beautiful girl on the balcony. The story that unfolds is nothing and everything you ever expected. Sydney’s beauty pours from her fingers as she crafts lyrics to Ridge’s passionate tune. What will be the cost of finding your musical muse? What lines will be crossed and at what cost. 

“God, if just holding hands with him feels this intense, I can’t imagine what everything else with him would feel like.”

Colleen Hoover holds a piece of real estate on my “go to” author list. When I crack open one of her books I know that I am in for an emotional ride. Maybe Someday adds to a growing list of Hoover classics. I will take a page from her own work to best describe her – “She’s worth it all. She’s worth more.” 


Blog Tour: Saving Forever by Jasinda Wilder (review and giveaway)

Title: Saving Forever
(The Ever Trilogy)
Author: Jasinda Wilder

Ever and Cade,

Sorry I vanished like I did. I’m not sure I can even explain things. I don’t know when I’ll be back. IF I’ll be back. I’m not sure of anything, except that I love you, Ever. You’re my twin, my best friend, and leaving you was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I know you don’t understand. Maybe you never will. I hope you don’t, honestly. It would be easier that way. That’s cowardly, I’m sure.

Cade, take care of her. Love her, the way she deserves. The way you always have, for forever and always.

If I could ask you anything, it’s that you remember me as I was, and forget me as I am.

I’m sorry, and goodbye, and I love you.

Eden

And so all good things must come to an end…

“I love you. No matter what. Forever and Always.”

It felt like a year since I finished book two of this trilogy. Jasinda left off with a shocking ending and questioning where book three would take me. Taking events full of tragedy, heartache, loneliness, and anger and twisting them into 541 pages of hope and second chances is not easily achieved. Jasinda’s words layer like Band-Aids. Word by word and page by page, Saving Forever, heals four lives that will never be the same. 

“Forgiveness is a choice, and so is love.” 

Forgiveness and eternal love become the shining glimmer of hope in a story full of angst. Having the strength to forgive and an iron clad hold on eternal love push forward both Ever and Eden’s stories. To forgive others is hard but to forgive yourself…well that is where you start Saving Forever. 

“Accept the guilt, acknowledge your fault. Then, live. Learn from it, and keep going. You don’t forget, you don’t block it or bury it. You just… live. Don’t let guilt define you.”

Live and accept. There are moments in life that will thrust you so far out of your own body that you feel as if you are watching someone else’s story. Coming to grips, this foursome helps one another through what would break most. Saving Forever illustrates that there is more to life then our own personal burdens but when we step back and see “the” big picture only then can we live it. Book three of The Ever Trilogy adds to a long line of Jasinda Wilder favorites! Adding this series to your bookshelf is a book lover must.
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jasinda Wilder is a Michigan native with a penchant for titillating tales about sexy men and strong women. When she’s not writing, she’s probably shopping, baking, or reading. 
​Some of her favorite authors include Nora Roberts, JR Ward, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Liliana Hart and Bella Andre. 
She loves to travel and some of her favorite vacations spots are Las Vegas, New York City and Toledo, Ohio. 
You can often find Jasinda drinking sweet red wine with frozen berries and eating a cupcake. 
Jasinda is represented by Kristin Nelson of the Nelson Literary Agency.

GR | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Amazon

Saving Forever Buy Links:

Amazon: http://amzn.com/B00HFFEN4C
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00HFFEN4C

Forever & Always Buy Links:
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/18WCGFL
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/1cgL0WT
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/18WDLgO
ITUNES: http://bit.ly/18WENcF
Kobo: http://bit.ly/18WEWg5

After Forever Buy Links:
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/Jbr9eJ
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/192Yv9E
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/192Yzq4

BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE: THE PAIRING BY KATIE ASHLEY

BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE
FEB. 17TH

FEB 18TH
FEB 19TH
FEB 20TH
for questions, pls contact us at

Anniversary Special and HUGE Giveaway from Omnific Publishing

**Blows noise maker and taps mic** 
 Happy Fourth Anniversary Omnific Publishing!!!! 
 Help us celebrate four years of amazing authors and amazing reads. 
 To celebrate we have some awesome giveaways planned!! 
 Enter to win a kindle fire LOADED with the entire Omnific catalogue. 

“Omnific is romance…without rules.”

Omnific Publishing, is an independent publisher of romantic fiction, founded in 2009, and home of the popular novels by Alice Clayton, Debra Anastasia, Emma Chase, Dr. Ivan Rusilko and many others.
Follow Omnific:
To see all ninety-five titles click here >> Omnific Publishing Titles <<
Omnific: The Complete Ebook Collection
Purchase here
Stay tuned next week for flash giveaways that you do not want to miss!! 
**throws confetti everywhere**

TBA Lovapalooza 2014 featuring a Valentine’s Day on the Lazy K Ranch by Kristen Proby

THE BOOK AVENUE LOVAPALOOZA
featuring a Valentine’s Day on the Lazy K Ranch by Kristen Proby

CHEMISTRY WAS NEVER THIS SEXY IN HIGH SCHOOL.
In her sizzling new series, USA Today bestselling author Kristen Proby sets the stage for a passionate reunion under the breathtaking Montana sky.
Cara Donovan’s summer tutoring job is turning out to be a challenge—and not just because of her troubled twelve-year-old student. It’s his uncle Josh who’s the real problem. If problem is the word for an irresistibly cocky, muscle-bound rancher with a taste for tight Levi’s and shameless flirtation. . . .
Cara is nothing like the wallflower Josh King remembers good-naturedly teasing in high school. This Cara is gorgeous, confident, fun. From the moment the fiery teacher steps foot on his family’s Lazy K Ranch, the stubborn playboy is determined to corral her. So what happens when his luscious lover takes over the reins?
The first in a steamy trilogy, Kristen Proby’s enthralling novel is filled to the brim with one hardworking family’s triumphs and challenges, all the wild adventure of the modern West, and a whole lot of titillating fun.
Special Valentine’s Day on the Lazy K Ranch
It’s been a hell of a long day. The kids at school were loud and obnoxious. Well, more so than usual. Working with middle schoolers is typically loud and obnoxious. But with it being Friday, and Valentine’s Day, no one wanted to listen or focus.
And I can admit, I was just as bad as they were.
Josh, my fiancée, had two dozen red roses delivered to me at work, which made the girls sigh in envy and the boys smirk. And then the questions began.
“When are you getting married?”
“Are we invited?”
“Can I see your ring again?”
“When is he going to come visit?”
Definitely not a productive workday.
When I came home, Josh was still out working somewhere on the ranch. So, I changed out of my work clothes and got dinner under way while I watched a Nicolas Sparks movie marathon on TV.
Josh offered to make reservations and take me out for Valentine’s Day, but since it’s our first, I’d rather just stay in and enjoy him.
I’d be content doing that every day for the rest of my life.
“Hey, baby,” Josh says as he enters through the back door. He’s dirty and looks exhausted. He’s the only man I know who works from five in the morning until seven at night, sometimes longer depending on the time of year.
“Hi, handsome.” He leans in to kiss me softly. “Rough day?”
“Yeah, but I’m all finished now. It smells fantastic in here.”
“I thought I’d make a lasagna for dinner.”
“My favorite.” At six-foot-four, my man towers over me, smiling down at me with that dimple winking in his cheek. “Special occasion?”
“It’s Valentine’s Day, silly.” I shrug and grin happily. “I thought I’d make my man dinner.”
“Your man appreciates it.” He kisses me again, but doesn’t pull me to him, not wanting to get me dirty. “Let me quickly shower and change and then I’m all yours.”
“That sounds like the best offer I’ve had all day.”
He winks and saunters down the hallway to our bedroom. While he’s in the shower, I set the table and pull the lasagna out of the over to rest, toss the salad and slip bread in the oven to toast.
Just as I pull the pan of bread out of the oven, Josh returns and pulls me in his arms, oven mitts and all. 
“Now I can say hello properly,” he growls and kisses me long and deep. He cups my ass in his big hands and pulls me against him, pressing his erection to my belly. “You look beautiful.”
“Thank you.” I blush and glance down at my simple black maxi skirt and red V-neck top. “And thank you for the beautiful flowers.” I gesture to the big bouquet sitting on the dining table. “They were a big hit.”
“With you or your students?”
“Both.” I giggle and kiss his cheek as he pulls away and sits at the table. “Are you watching chick flicks?”
“Of course.” I shrug and dive into my salad. “It’s the day for it, after all.”
“Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed it,” he says and polishes off his lasagna. “’Cause I have plans for you for the rest of the night.”
“You do?”
“Yes. If you don’t mind cleaning this up, I have something to take care of.”
“Go.” I wave him off and begin clearing the table. Just as I close the dishwasher and turn it on, he returns, wearing a pair of blue sweats that sit low on his hips, and no shirt.
No fucking shirt.
“Well, hello, mostly naked man.” My eyes travel up his body, soaking in the muscular abs, chest and arms. Those amazing arms the size of my thigh and to his handsome face. He’s grinning at me, his chocolate brown eyes soft and happy, as he saunters to me and pulls me into his arm. My cheek rests on his bare chest and I take a deep breath, loving the way he feels against me.
“I love it when you’re mostly naked.”
“I love it when you’re all the way naked,” I replies and lifts me in his arms, carrying me back to our bedroom.
“Is this what your plans are for the rest of the night? Nakedness?”
“Baby, that’s my plan every night.” He kisses my cheek before setting me on my feet and turns me around to face the bathroom, which has been covered in lit candles. He’s run a bubble bath with rose petals and there is a bucket sitting on the floor next to the old-fashioned claw foot bathtub with a bottle of champagne chilling inside.
“Seriously?” I whisper.
“It’s just a little pampering,” he murmurs as he nuzzles my neck from behind. He pulls my red shirt over my head, unclasps my bra and then pushes my skirt down my hips to pool around my feet.
“No panties,” he says with a smile in his voice as his hands glide over my ass and hips. “Naughty girl.”
“I thought you might like that,” I reply with a grin.
He scoops me into his arms again and lowers me into the deliciously warm bath. “I love this tub. Thank you for installing it for me.”
“If a new bathtub makes you happy, baby, who am I to complain?” He sheds his sweats, pours us each a glass of champagne and follows me into the tub, leaning against the opposite end from me. “I’d like to propose a toast,” he says as he holds his glass up. “To the most amazing woman I’ve ever met. You are the best part of my life, Carolina. You’ve made our home come alive with your laughter and big heart, and I’m thankful every day that you’re here with me. Happy Valentine’s Day, my love.”
I blink the tears from my eyes as he clinks his glass to mine and then take a sip of the bubbly wine, sink back in the water, and take a deep, relaxing breath. “This is heavenly, Josh.”
He sets his glass on the nearby windowsill and pulls my right foot into his grasp and begins massaging the arch with his thumbs.
“Correction: now I’m in heaven.”
“You deserve to be pampered,” he replies with a smile. “And I get you naked. It’s really a win-win.”
“I like the way you think, Mr. King.”
I sip my bubbly and sigh contentedly as Josh continues to rub my feel. Finally, the takes my glass from me, sets it beside his own and pulls me into his arms to kiss me softly, brushing his lips gently over my own. He nibbles the corner of my mouth and then nuzzles my nose before whispering, “I’m going to wash your hair now, baby.”
He turns me away from him, and scoops water over my hair, with what I’m not sure, and I’m too relaxed to open my eyes and turn around to look.
Who cares, anyway?
When my hair is all wet, he lathers it up with my shampoo, massaging and scrubbing my scalp for long minutes. 
“Good God, you’re good with your hands, babe.”
“Hmm, they love touching you.”
He rinses the suds carefully out of my hair and then conditions it before rinsing it one more time, then pulls me to lie against his chest.
“Do you have any idea how much I love you?” His lips are next to my ear as he whispers the sweet words.
“It can’t be any more than I love you,” I whisper back and melt against him. 
“Are you ready to get out of this tub?” he murmurs.
“Hey, I’m just along for the ride tonight, right?”
“Interesting choice of words,” he replies, his voice full of humor. 
“Oh God, no horseback rides tonight.” I look back at him with wide eyes. “Please.”
“No, baby, not tonight.” He gently pushes me forward so he can pull himself out of the tub first, dries off, then helps me out. He covers my hair with a towel before drying the rest of my body himself, then to my surprise, wraps me up in a big fluffy robe that I don’t recognize.
“This is new.”
He smiles serenely and nods. “Just something to keep you warm in.”
“You’re good to me.”
“Always.” He kisses my hand, then leads me to the vanity, pulls out my stool and sits me down. I watch him carefully, his face and body. He looks relaxed and peaceful as he reaches for my brush and drags it through my wet hair before blowing it dry, strand by strand. “I love your hair.”
“I know.” I smile at him in the mirror and sit quietly as he finishes drying my hair, then lifts me in his arms again and carries me to the bedroom, when the bed has been turned down. He sets me on my feet, unbelts the robe and pushes it off my shoulders.
“Your body is spectacular,” he whispers as his eyes travel over my skin. “All of it’s hills and valleys. Your smooth skin. The way it blushes when I touch you.”
His soft words are turning me on, big time. 
He palms my ass in his hands and lifts me effortlessly against him. I wrap my legs around his waist as he climbs onto the bed and hovers over me, his elbows now planted beside my head.
“I’m going to make love to you tonight, Carolina.”
“I sincerely hope so, Joshua.” 
His eyes flicker with humor as he lowers his head to take my nipple between his lips, sucking it gently. His hand glides down my ribcage to my hip then drifts between my legs. His fingers flirt with my pussy, then one fingertip glides from my clit, through my folds and slides home.
“Fuck me, you’re so wet baby.”
“You turn me on, you know.”
He grows and bites my neck then licks his way up to my ear. “You fucking make my cock throb. I can’t even think about you during the day without sporting a hard on for an hour.”
I giggle and then moan when he brushes over my sweet spot. “Oh God, right there.”
“I know,” he says and brushes over it again, making my hips buck. “Should I taste you before I make love to you?”
“Please,” I whimper, circling my hips.
“Please to what, sugar?”
“Please make love to me. I can’t stand it.”
He pulls my leg up around his elbow, opening me wider, and slips inside me slowly, stretching me as he sinks as far as he can. He groans and covers my lips with his, sucks and nibbles them as he begins to move in long, measured strokes, making me crazy.
“Faster, babe.”
“Fuck no, this is going to be slow, Carolina.” He nibbles down my jawline to my throat and then buries his face in my neck as he continues to torture us both. “Every time is like the first time with you. Every fucking time.”
He lets go of my leg and cups my face in his hand, gazes down at me with so much love in his brown eyes, I feel my own eyes fill with tears. 
“Your eyes are so green right now,” he whispers. His hips gradually speed up, just enough that when he drags the head of his cock over my sweet spot it sends me that much closer to my release. “That’s right, you’re going to come for me, baby.”
“Oh God, so close,” I whimper and cup his ass in my hands, urging him to thrust faster. I squeeze him with my most intimate muscles and smile in delight when he mutters under his breath and begins to lose control, moving faster, harder.
“Ah, baby, love you so fucking much.” His jaw clenches and I know he’s as close as I am. I pull his lips down to mine and kiss him with everything in me as I fall apart, convulsing around him, my hips bucking uncontrollably. He thrusts hard, twice, then follows me over the edge, rocking against me as he succumbs to his release.
“I love you too,” I pant as he reverses our position, nestling me against his chest. 
“That was just the beginning, my love.”
“Best Valentine’s Day ever,” I reply with a grin.

Kristen is the author of the Amazon and USA Today bestselling With Me In Seattle series. She has a passion for a good love story and strong characters who love humor and have a strong sense of loyalty and family. Her men are the alpha type; fiercely protective and a bit bossy, and her ladies are fun, strong, and not afraid to stand up for themselves.
Kristen spends her days with her muse in the Pacific Northwest. She enjoys coffee, chocolate and sunshine. And naps.

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TBA Lovapalooza featuring a Valentine’s Day with the Kelly Family (Picturing Perfect by Melissa Brown)

THE BOOK AVENUE LOVAPALOOZA 
featuring a Valentine’s Day with the Kelly Family
Picturing Perfect by Melissa Brown

Life may not turn out like we planned, but sometimes that’s what makes it perfect…
Hadley Foster has always been a planner. But, since the age of nineteen, things haven’t exactly gone according to plan… not at all. And the changes continue to mount when a trip to Europe with her best friend starts a domino effect in all aspects of her life. Suddenly, the future she had envisioned for herself seems unlikely to happen. It’s time to, make a new plan… or accept the dominoes as they fall.
Jason Kelly has a great life. He’s a successful self-published writer who’s living his dreams. But, something is missing. Hadley Foster. Letting her slip through his fingers is one of his biggest regrets. Over time, he had to accept the idea of being without his first love as he watched her fall in love with someone else.
When circumstances bring Jason and Hadley back into one another’s lives, they’re forced to deal with their past, their present and the possibility of a future together

SPECIAL VALENTINE SCENE 
WITH THE KELLY FAMILY


“Good job, little man.” I heard Jason say from down the hall. I’d been sequestered to our bedroom while he and Marty ‘prepared’ for Valentine’s Day. I heard rustling papers and plastic and couldn’t help but be intrigued. “Mommy’s gonna love this.”
I could hear the pride in his voice. My heart swelled in anticipation. Observing Jason and Marty interact would never get old.
“Mommy Vaaaa-tine.” Marty yelled from the living room.
“You’re blowing our cover,” Jason whispered with a laugh. “All right, all right. I guess you can join us on the couch, Mommy. We’re as ready as we’re gonna be.”
Quickly, I placed Jason’s gift in my pocket and walked toward the living room. When I rounded the hallway corner, I couldn’t help but gasp. Red streamers and white twinkle lights dangled from the ceiling. Small vases were placed around the shelves and countertops—each one filled with three flowers. One red, one white, one pink… each color representing a member of our family.
“You never cease to amaze me, Mr. Kelly.”
“Marty stayed up all night… he’s been anxious. Wanted to give you a proper Valentine’s Day.”
“Vaaa-tine,” my two year old little guy ran to my feet and extended his hand. A simple red heart, scribbled with white and pink was tucked between his pudgy little fingers.
“Thank you, sweetheart. I love it.”
Scooping Marty in my arms, I joined Jason on the couch, placing the little guy on my lap. It was obvious that Jason was doing his best to disguise a smile, but I could see right through him. “Marty stayed up all night, huh?”
He nodded emphatically, “Mmm hmm. I was just his grunt. He’s been bossing me around all morning.”
“It smells good,” I said, smelling the aroma of coffee and cinnamon coming from the kitchen. Marty hopped off my lap and returned to coloring at the coffee table.
“Fresh cinnamon rolls.”
“My favorite.”
“I know,” Jason said, placing a small kiss on my lips. “I have a confession to make.”
“What’s that?” I whispered, curious.
“I didn’t get you any flowers.”
I pressed the small red valentine to my chest, “This is all I need. Seriously.”
“That’s from your son. I have something else for you.”
“Seriously, Jase. You’ve already done enough! Breakfast, homemade valentines, streamers…”
“Here,” he said, placing a small box in my hand.
“Jase—”
“It’s nothing. Just open it.”
The small velvet box creaked as I opened it. My hand pressed to my mouth as I stared at the locket that hung from a silver chain, Marty’s birth stone dangled from the chain.
“Open it,” Jason said, adjusting his glasses, a wide grin on his handsome face.
The vintage locket opened easily. Inside was a picture of Marty and a simple note that said. “We love you. Happy Valentine’s Day.”
“I love it,” I said, wrapping my arms around Jason’s neck, nuzzling my lips against his warm skin.
“Good.” Jason’s voice was soft and loving as he stroked my back.
“I have bad news, though.” I pulled away from him, looking back at the locket.
“What’s that?” His brow furrowed.
“This side… it’s not going to work.” I said, pointing at the small note inside the locket.
“What do you mean?” He asked, “Why not?”
I had absolutely no poker face, but I did my best to stay serious as I removed the envelope from my pocket.
“Here.” I said.
Confusion remained on Jason’s face as he opened the envelope. When he removed the ultrasound picture, his eyes widened and his chest heaved.
“You’re… you mean you’re…pregnant?”
I nodded, tears welling in my eyes. “We’re pregnant. So, I’m afraid we’ll need that space in the locket…for his or her picture.”
“Oh my god, Haddie,” he said, placing his hand on my abdomen. “I can’t believe it.”
“Are you happy?”
“Are you kidding me? I’m… I’m… I can’t even form the words right now. That’s how awesome I feel.”
“Good,” I said, a satisfied grin.
“How far along?”
“Just eight weeks. I didn’t want to say anything until I knew for sure.”
Marty wandered back to the couch, hoisting himself up to Jason’s lap.
“Hopefully Mr. Marty Pants won’t mind sharing the spotlight.”
Jason shook his head, “He’s a champ. He’ll be just fine.” Jason placed a small kiss on the top of Marty’s head. “Won’t you, big brother?”
“Vaaa-tine!”
“That’s right, buddy. Mommy just gave us the best Valentine ever.” He turned to me. “Seriously. The best ever.”
I have always been fascinated with books—-ever since I was a little girl sitting in front of my record player, following along with my huge 12×12 storybooks.
I love books—everything about them. I love reading them, being surrounded by them in bookstores and libraries, and most recently, writing some of my own.
“Bouquet Toss” is available as an e-book and paperback on Amazon.com. It is a story that is very close to my heart, one that was very cathartic to write and has opened me up to all sorts of writing possibilities.
“Champagne Toast” is a companion book to Bouquet Toss and was released on January 8th and is also available as an e-book and paperback through amazon.

TBA Lovapalooza featuring A Special Valentine Scene from Undefeated by Scott Hildreth plus Giveaway

THE BOOK AVENUE LOVAPALOOZA
featuring UNDEFEATED by Scott Hildreth

WARNING: This book contains scenes of abuse. They are descriptive, heartbreaking, and may cause you to feel certain emotions. If you’re incapable of reading about a woman that recovers from an abusive relationship, don’t read this book. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED. 
Kace Meadows lives in Austin, Texas. Now 26, she has been in an abusive relationship since she was sixteen years old. As abusive as it is, she can’t seem to find a way to allow herself to end it. With her abusive boyfriend, she can’t seem to win. 
Shane Dekkar is an unknown, undefeated, and somewhat shy boxer from Compton California. After the death of his grandfather, he moves to Austin and meets Kace by happenstance as she and her boyfriend are in an argument in public. He is drawn to her, and she to him. 
When he meets her again two years later, he begins to believe in fate. But, as he prepares for a potential shot at a championship fight, there’s not time in his life or career for a woman. 
Shane fights his inner demons by using his fists. On the street or in the ring, Shane does what he does best, he wins at any cost. Unlike Kace, Shane can’t seem to lose. 
Undefeated is an extremely romantic erotica novel about fighting. Fighting for what you believe in. Fighting for life. Fighting to live. 
And fighting to find love in the most unlikely places. 
Be prepared to be moved, touched, stand up and cheer, and cry your eyes out. This book will, without a doubt, knock you unconscious. 
CAUTION: Graphic sexual content. This book contains fighting scenes that are descriptive. Additionally, it contains graphic scenes of street fighting that may be perceived as unnecessarily violent. Lastly, the abuse scenes in this book are descriptive, realistic, and emotional.
SPECIAL VALENTINE SCENE
FEBRUARY 2014 

SHANE. Coexisting with another person that you love or care for is one thing. I’m quite certain that it is satisfying to most people. Sharing your life – truly sharing it – well, nothing compares. The taste of love, for me, is something that most people will never savor.

“Kace babe? Are you about ready?” nervously I paced back and forth across the living room floor.

“Just about, babe. I’m almost done,” her voice echoed from inside the bathroom.

Valentine’s Day. Something I really know nothing about. I know it’s a day that we are expected to express love for our respective others. It seems quite foolish to me to choose a day to express your love. I believe it is my duty, in accepting Kace into my life, to express my love to her every day. She should never wonder what I think, feel, or desire.

“Okay, here I am,” she said as she walked out of the bathroom.

Wow.

“Uhhm. Babe. You look. Wow. You look remarkable,” I stammered as she turned in a slow circle.

She was dressed in a black dress, heels, and the necklace I bought her at the mall. Ripp actually helped me pick it out, and I must say that it was a great Valentine’s Day gift. A silver necklace with two silver hearts – each had our name engraved on it. In a sense, according to Ripp, Kace’s own heart shaped dog tags.

“All for you,” she stopped turning, faced me, and smiled.

“Well, I just love it,” I admitted.

I placed my hands on each of her shoulders and held her as I slowly kissed her. As our lips parted, I looked into her eyes. I had so much I wanted to say, but needed to wait until we were at dinner. I looked into her eyes admiringly and smiled.

“You look nice. I like the formal look on you. Black slacks, dress shoes, a light blue dress shirt, and a jacket. Is this the way the future Heavyweight Champion of the World dresses?” Kace giggled as she slowly looked from the floor up to my face and back down again.

“This is how the man that loves you dresses on Valentine’s Day, babe,” I laughed.

“Well, I just love it,” she giggled mockingly.

“Let me see if our ride is here,” I said nervously.

“You stay here, let me see,” I said as I pointed to where she stood and turned for toward the door.

As I opened the door and looked out into the driveway I was immediately relieved and excited at the same time. I wanted Kace’s Valentine’s Day to be so special. She said she had been with Buster since she was sixteen, and even when she was young, he never celebrated Valentine’s Day. She said he had told her it was a stupid holiday. This was her first Valentine’s Day ever. I wanted desperately to make it one that she would remember.

“Our ride is here, babe,” I said excitedly as I walked back into the living room.

When I walked in, she was rubbing the necklace with her fingers. “I love this necklace,” she smiled.

“It looks great, babe. Come on, our ride’s here,” I held my hand out toward her.

As she grabbed my hand and we walked to the door, I hoped that her night would be memorable. As soon as she stepped through the door, I knew at least the first part of it was a clear winner.

“Shane! Really? Oh my God!” she screamed as she let go of my hand and ran toward the driveway.

“I guess you’re okay with the transportation arrangements?” I smiled a prideful smile as I walked toward where she was standing.

“A horse and carriage? Who wouldn’t be happy? Oh my God. We’re going to ride in it?” she giggled as she slowly raised her hands toward the horse’s neck.

“You can pet the horse, ma’am. They’re very tame. Mr. Dekkar, pleasure’s mine. We’re all rootin’ for ya in that fight comin’ up, son. The great state of Texas has your back on this,” the man said as he held the reigns of the horses.

“Thank you sir. I’ll try not to let you down,” I nodded as I slowly approached Kace.

I’d never been around a horse, and to be quite honest, I was nervous. I can’t remember that I have ever even seen one in person. As Kace’s hand worked its way up and down the neck of the horse, she smiled an involuntary smile that spoke clearly what she felt. As I touched her shoulder, she turned to face me.

“Ahhh, baby. Your make up is going to be a mess,” I said as she turned around.

Without speaking, she reached up and wiped the tears from her face with her index finger.

“I…” she looked down at her feet and back up at my face.

I held my hand on her shoulder and guided her to the side of the carriage. As she grabbed the brass handle to pull herself into the carriage, she turned to face me. Her mouth opened and she paused, unable to speak.

“Save it babe. Get in,” I laughed as I held her hand and lifted her into the open top carriage.

“This is just…I love you, Shane,” she said as she sat on the wooden seat.

“I love you, babe,” I responded as I jumped into the seat beside her.

“Where’s he taking us?” she asked.

“We’re going to eat dinner, babe,” I responded, smiling.

Kace had been begging to eat sushi for nearly a month. She had never eaten it before, but couldn’t wait to try it. Purposely, I had made all the excuses in the world to wait to take her, knowing I wanted to treat her to it on this day. There was a small family owned sushi place two miles from where we lived, and according to all sources, it was second to none. Seating was limited, as the restaurant had ten tables total.

I approached the owner a month prior to tonight and asked to lease the entire restaurant, attempting to plan a private dinner for Kace and I. Hesitantly he calculated what his anticipated profit would be for the night. When he gave me the six hundred dollar figure, I gave him a thousand.

As the horses trotted down the street, Kace tilted her head back and smiled.

“I love that you can smell them. The horses. They smell so good. This is just too much,” she rested her head on my shoulder and sighed.

The methodical sound of the horse’s hooves on the street was hypnotic and relaxing. The two miles took about half an hour to travel, and Kace enjoyed every moment of it. As cars passed the carriage, she waved to them as if she were a celebrity. In her mind, she probably felt like one. As I watched her glow with pride, I knew that I had made a great choice.

With the carriage.

And with Kace.

SHANE. “Are you serious? We get to eat sushi?” Kace squealed as the horses pulled the carriage into the parking lot of the small restaurant.

I smiled as I saw the expression on her face, knowing that her expressed joy was genuine. Small things made this girl feel so special. The last ten years of her life, so to speak, she has lived in seclusion. Her life was just beginning, and she was enjoying every minute of it.

As the carriage stopped, she turned to me with a look of sheer disappointment.

“They’re closed, babe,” her shoulders slumped as she spoke.

“Let’s get out and check the door. Maybe they’re open,” I responded as I reached for her hand.

The look of disappointment stayed with Kace as we walked up the sidewalk to the front door. The neon sign inside the window was clear, bright, and illuminated for all to see, CLOSED. Kace turned to me and smiled from ear to ear as she pushed against the door and it opened.

“They’re open, babe,” she giggled as she peered inside the door.

“Well, let’s go in,” I smiled as I held the door open.

Kace stepped through the door, and I followed her into the restaurant. I looked at the owner and held my index finger to my lips, hoping he would get the message to not let Kace know what was going on. His nod confirmed he understood what I was trying to say.

“Sit wherever you want, babe,” I said as Kace looked around the small restaurant.

“There’s nobody here, this is so nice. Maybe no one knows they’re open because he didn’t turn on the OPEN sign,” Kace smiled as she started to sit at the table in the corner.

I sat on the opposite side of the table and smiled – content that Kace was so excited having the opportunity to try sushi for the first time.

“I have no idea what to get, I have always wanted to try sushi, but never had the chance,” she rubbed her hands together as she spoke.

The owner and his wife ran the small sushi restaurant. They were both Japanese, and acted as the waiter, waitress, owners, and sushi chef. The man approached our table, holding menus and smiling.

“Good evening, welcome to Wasabi. Is this your first time at Wasabi?” he asked as he stood at the edge of our table.

“This is my first time ever. I’ve never had sushi,” Kace blurted as she opened her hands and motioned over the table.

“Well, if you would prefer, I will prepare you a special plate. A little bit of everything that Wasabi is famous for,” the owner said as he alternated glances between Kace and I.

I shrugged my shoulders, “Sounds good to me. Kace?”

Kace nodded her head eagerly and smiled.

“I’ll have water to drink,” I said.

“I’d like water as well,” Kace said.

The owner nodded, smiled, and walked away. Kace turned to face me and grinned as she covered her mouth.

“This is so exciting. I hope no one else shows up until we’re done. It’s like it’s our own little sushi restaurant for Valentine’s Day. I love it,” she covered her mouth with both hands as she giggled.

“I have something for you,” she said as she reached into her purse.

Kace removed a card from her purse, handed it to me, and leaned forward onto the table eagerly waiting for me to read it. As I opened it, she sat back in her seat and smiled, appearing extremely anxious.

I smiled, closed the card, and placed it on the table. The owner approached, quietly placed two glasses of water on the table, smiled and turned away.

“Kace, I have something else for you,” I reached into my jacket pocket and removed a small thin box containing a diamond tennis bracelet I had purchased for her.

As I handed her the box, she looked confused.

“You already gave me a card and this necklace,” she said as she reached for the box with one hand and rubbed her necklace with her other hand.

“Well, I just thought you’d like this. And I have a few things to say as well,” I said as I motioned toward the box.

“Oh my God, Shane, this is too much,” she shook her head as she looked in the box.

“Put it on,” I smiled as she pulled the bracelet from the box.

I reached across the table and helped her with the bracelet. As she clasped it, she rotated her wrist and stared at the bracelet, smiling. Making Kace feel special meant more to me than anything else that I could offer her. I don’t ever want her to wonder how I feel about her, I want her to know.

“Shane, I love it – it’s beautiful. And so many diamonds, this is just crazy,” she looked up from the bracelet and smiled.

“Okay. And here’s what I want to say,” I inhaled slowly and waited for her to make eye contact.

“Here in six months, I will be fighting for the championship. After the fight, I will have accomplished everything I ever wanted to or needed to – as far as fighting goes. I won’t need to fight any longer. Depending on whether I win or loose, I will make between one and a half and two million dollars. I want to pay to remodel the gym, which will be about two hundred thousand. The rest, I want to donate to build a home for battered women. A safe house,” I paused and waited for Kace to respond.

“Oh my God, Shane. Wow.” Kace’s eyes widened as she spoke.

“Wait, babe. That’s not all. I want to retire after the fight. I want to retire, and I want. Well, I want,” I paused and took a deep breath.

“Kace I want to have kids. I want that bad. I want to be a husband and a father, and there’s no one on this earth that I want to do that with but you,” I paused as the owner carried two plates to the table.

He placed the plates on the table and stood proudly, smiling at his presentation.

“Sashimi, Hot Roll, Tiger Roll, Cucumber salad, California Roll, and Special Roll,” he said as he pointed to each of the items on the plate.

“Thank you,” I said as I nodded toward the owner.

Kace looked down at the plates and back up at me. She picked up the chop sticks, looked at them curiously, and placed them back on the table. She glanced down at the presentation of sushi, and toward me, and smiled.

“I tell you what. You teach me how to eat this without looking like a fool, and I’ll have your baby,” she said as she looked into my eyes.

I tried to refrain from smiling, but I couldn’t. Kace was as adorable of a woman as she was beautiful. As my mouth formed a smile, she formed her hand into a fist and extended it to the center of the table.

“Pound it,” she said.

I shook my head slowly, and made a fist. As I extended my hand toward hers, she smacked her fist against mine sharply.

“There it’s a done deal,” she smiled as she pulled her had back to her side of the table.

And, as I taught Kace to eat sushi on our first Valentine’s Day of what would be a lifetime of them, I knew.

This woman would be the best mother that a child could ever ask for.

Readers, 
I will never forget the first time I actually felt as if I had helped someone resolve an issue in their life. I was in middle school. It started then, and has continued throughout my entire life. I have always made myself available to talk to people and resolve (or attempt to resolve) issues that they struggle with. Having an exceptional ability to communicate has always been a gift of mine, and I have enjoyed doing so. Telling stories has always been second nature to me. Writing has been a passion of mine since I was a child. I have written poetry, romance, self-help, addiction, alcoholism, codependency, technical, and satire. There isn’t a genre or a topic that I feel more comfortable with. I enjoy writing about whatever it is that I feel passionate about at the time. Being open-minded and often seeing abusive relationships unfold, I have always been passionate about abuse, or the prevention of it. My main focus has always been people that are incapable of helping themselves, primarily women, children, and the elderly. I have talked to hundreds of women that were in abusive relationships, and assisted many of them in removing themselves from these relationships. I try to focus in my writings to develop a story that makes people stop and think. To look at a subject or subjects from a different point of view. If I am able to get my point across, and make the subject entertaining to the reader, I feel that I have met my objective. I feel that I have tremendous depth as a person, and have had some great experiences in my life. To date, what life has offered me has been nothing short of spectacular. My opinions, point of views, and perspectives on matters are just that; an opinion. There isn’t necessarily a right or wrong in what I write, but more of a belief. I always believe in what I am writing, and I further believe that the reader may benefit from viewing it from the written perspective. I hope that you enjoy reading what I have written as much as I enjoy writing it. Nothing gives me greater satisfaction than knowing a reader enjoyed something I have written. Considering that, please take time to leave a book review if you have read something I have written. 
Best Regards,
Scott Hildreth
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