Thursday, April 24

Review: Reeling in the Redneck by Lindsey Brookes

As the follow up book to one titled Jimmie Joe Johnson: Manwhore, Reeling in the Redneck doesn't sound nearly as controversial. To be honest, I didn't actually purchase the first book until I saw the second on Netgalley.  But I am glad that I did.  Possum Hollow, Alabama is a small town just chock full of interesting characters.

This book picks up the story a few months after the conclusion of book one.  Randi Lynn and Skeeter Cooper are still rubbing each other the wrong way and creating sparks every time they are in each others company, but their awareness of each other is slowly changing. When Randi Lynn receives a letter from a modeling agency finally giving her a real shot at her life long dream of becoming a model, the entire town pulls together to help raise the money for her to start her dream.  Randi Lynn is scared but excited and Skeeter gets a bit cranky about the idea of Randi Lynn leaving.  However, since he has fishing tournament the weekend before in New York State, he offers to give Randi Lynn a ride up, as long as she can rough it a few days first. Knowing she has to save as much money as possible, she accepts. As they spend days alone together, Randi Lynn and Skeeter come to know each other a lot better and fall in love along the way.

I was a little confused by the blurb, I took it this would be Randi Lynn coming back to town after being gone to claim her man story. But that's not it at all.  Most of the story is Randi Lynn actually getting to New York for her interview and her and Skeeter's adventures along the way.  At its basics this is a story about realizing that some things are worth fighting for and that sometimes dreams change. As in the first, the POV flipped back and forth between the two main characters and worked well for this book. I enjoyed this story even more than the first and can't wait to find out what is next for the crew. I gave this book 4 stars.

Randi Lynn Brown grew up in Possum Hollow, Alabama with dreams of someday becoming a famous model. But when the opportunity arises for her to do just that, she finds herself rethinking everything. What if she fails? And can she really leave Skeeter Cooper behind? Not that there is really anything to leave behind. The irritating man has made it clear that she ain’t his kinda female. The kind that drinks and curses and doesn’t mind getting a little dirty. Maybe he’s right. Then again, maybe he ain’t.

Skeeter Cooper likes fishing, drinking and locking horns with that sexy, sassy female, Randi Lynn Brown. It’s not until word gets out that she might be moving to New York City that he realizes how much he’s gonna miss having her in his life. But he ain’t about to keep her from chasing after her dream. He even offers to take her to Manhattan. The only ‘catch’ being she’ll have to attend a bass fishing tournament with him along the way. Problem is fish ain’t the only thing that ends up getting hooked that weekend!

Despite her modeling success, Randi Lynn finds herself yearning for the very place she’d always been so eager to leave behind. For the man she left behind. Following her heart, she returns to Possum Hollow, determined that nothing, not even one annoyingly stubborn man, is gonna keep her from finally REELING IN HER REDNECK for good.
Available at the following retailers:

Wednesday, April 23

Review: Jimmie Joe Johnson: Manwhore by Lindsey Brookes

This is the first book in the Possum Hollow series by Lindsey Brookes.  I first saw the book in a catalog from Kensington quite a while ago and it just totally caught my eye.  I mean, hello, 'manwhore' is in the title! I just plain sounded like a good time. And it so really was.

The story starts out from Baylee Jean's perspective.  Her Aunt Callie, in a drunken ramble, tries to explain to Baylee why men are so bad, and why she should be grateful that she scared off Jimmie Joe several years before.  In her drunken rant, she admits that she told Jimmie Joe that due to his family, he would never be worthy of Baylee and that if he didn't leave her alone, he would end up with his "balls pickled and put on display in a jar".  Baylee is absolutely livid with her aunt and shocked to the core.  Baylee had thought that it was something she had done all those years ago that caused Jimmie Joe to turn away from her.  But now that she knows the truth, she decides to go after her man.

The next chapter is from Jimmie Joe's perspective. He is just about to 'diddle' Sally Norton on the oversized washer, when another of his conquests comes rushing in and starts screaming at him. He ends up with a clothing cart slammed into his bare ass and no longer quite in the party mood.  Baylee Jean then shows up and proceeds to start to confuse him with smiles and innuendo instead of death glares and cold shoulders. Poor Jimmie Joe is left not sure what is going on, but Aunt Callie's threat is still fresh in his mind so he sets out to avoid Baylee at every turn.

I thought this was a great story.  The basic story was a sweet one - a guy who doesn't think he is good enough for his girl, and the girl who believes in her man, wrapped in redneck-isms and southern charm. Was the book a bit corny? Hell yeah! Totally over the Top Corn, but it so worked. These larger-than-life almost caricature characters can only be told in a small town setting. Miranda Lambert said it best with Everybody's Famous in a Small Town.  I gave this book 4 stars.

There are some things a man can't change. My bein' a babe magnet for one. . . --Jimmie Joe Johnson

Fact is, just about every single female in Possum Hollow, Alabama—along with most of the attached ones—has enjoyed my services. And not just as an auto mechanic, if you know what I mean. With me, women know exactly what to expect. A sweet ride, and no promises.

But even a manwhore has rules. Like stayin’ away from Baylee Jean Brown. As teenagers, Baylee Jean and I were hot and heavy. Then her Aunt Callie Rae warned me off, sayin’ I'd never be good enough. Seeing as the women in Baylee Jean’s family all have witch blood, and I figured Callie Rae was fixin’ to do something unmentionable to my man parts, I agreed. But now suddenly, Baylee Jean—smart, sexy, wild—is all over me. She wants me bad—hell, who doesn’t? But, if there’s one woman who could bring a hound dog to heel, it might be her…

Available at the following retailers:
Amazon     BN     Kobo     ARe

Tuesday, April 22

@GoddessFish Book Blast & Giveaway: The Cowboy Imports a Bride by Cora Seton

The Cowboy Imports a Bride

The Cowboys of Chance Creek, Book 3
Cora Seton

Genre: Contemporary Western Romance
Publisher: One Acre Press
Date of Publication: January 17, 2014
Number of pages: 281
Word Count: 68,080

Available at the following retailers:
Amazon     BN     Kobo     Smashwords

Rob Matheson's a fighter. Flattening enemies with his fists or with his legendary practical jokes, he's a tough enemy, and a troublesome friend. But Rob doesn't know how much longer he can keep up the act. As his buddies get married one by one, he's left with his lonely life - and the sinking feeling he lost more than his dreams when he traded them for a thick skin. Now Rob's father has issued a challenge - he'll give 200 acres of prime Montana ranchland to the first of his four sons to wed. No conditions, no meddling. Could this be a chance to become the man he really wants to be?

Morgan Tate's worked for years to climb the ladder to a top job at Cassidy Wineries, but Duncan Cassidy, the boss' son, always stands in her way. Now he's issued an ultimatum; marry him or he'll make sure she never works in the wine industry again. Morgan wants marriage - and a family - but not with Duncan. A certain cowboy in Chance Creek, Montana, has stolen her heart.

When Rob offers Morgan a proposition - marry him and split the land - they both find themselves with an ethical dilemma. They don't know each other well enough to wed, but they can't lie about their intentions before God and man, either.

Now they've got sixty days to fall in love, and a passel of family and friends determined to keep them apart. The victims of Rob's previous jokes are lining up to get their revenge, and Morgan's half-sister, Claire, is stirring up their mother's past.

Will it take the biggest practical joke of all to convince the world - and themselves - that they're truly meant to be man and wife?
“It isn't a joke,” he said softly. “I want a chance to change. To be the man I know I can be. I wish I could say that I love you, that I want to spend every waking moment of my life with you, and ask you to marry me for real. I think I will be able to say that to you someday soon. I think…really soon.” He swallowed hard at the very thought. “But we've known each other for so short a time, I can't say it yet. I'm sorry.” He got to his knees again, ready to stand up and head right back out the door. He never should have said anything to Morgan. Now he'd probably blown his chance with the only woman he thought he could fall in love with someday.

“I understand,” Morgan said calmly, freezing him in place. “I appreciate how honest you've been. Sit down again for a minute. Can I tell you what I want?”

He sat down, wrapped his arms around his knees and waited, his heart pounding at what she might say. This was by far the strangest conversation he'd ever had. The most liberating, too. “Definitely.”

“I want three things and I'll do just about anything to get them.” She looked him straight in the eye, though he had a feeling it was hard for her to do so. “First, I want a winery—which means I need a vineyard.” She held up one finger. “Second, I have some money saved up, but even if I had some land, I'd still need about twenty-thousand dollars more to buy rootstock and get it started.” Another finger. “And third…”

“Third…?” Rob held his breath.

“I want a baby.”

Heat blossomed inside him the moment his brain processed the concept of making a baby with Morgan. Images of her in his bed, writhing beneath him, gazing at him as he joined with her, clouded his head until he couldn't think straight. Morgan wasn't saying no to his proposal. In fact, maybe she was saying… “A baby with me?”


Cora will award a $100 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

So follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning.

Book Tour Info: 
Don't forget to check out the other stops on the Book Tour:

April 18: The Cowboy's Email Order Bride
Books to Light Your Fire
Kinky Vanilla Romance
Rose and Beps Blog
For the Love of Bookends
Deal Sharing Aunt
Harps Romance Book Review
Erzabet's Enchantments
A Book, A Beer, and A Dream
The Divas of Desire
Romance Novel Giveaways
The Book Review

April 21: The Cowboy Wins a Bride
Queentutt's World of Escapism
For the Love of Bookends - review
Bookgirl Knitting
The Book Review
Harps Romance Book Review
Straight From the Library
Books Are Love
Long and Short Reviews

April 22: The Cowboy Imports a Bride
JM Stewart--Contemporary Romance Author
The blog of C.R. Moss and Double D Ranch Tales
For the Love of Bookends - review
Deal Sharing Aunt
Reviews by Crystal
Queen of the Night Reviews
Musings and Ramblings
The Book Review

April 23: The Cowgirl Ropes a Billionaire
All I Want and More
For the Love of Bookends - review
Rose and Beps Blog
Books to Light Your Fire
Long and Short Reviews
Room With Books
The Book Review
Books Are Love
MAD Hoydenish

April 24: The Sheriff Catches a Bride
JM Stewart--Contemporary Romance Author
For the Love of Bookends - review
Bookgirl Knitting
Rage, Sex and Teddy Bears
Room With Books
The Book Review
Harps Romance Book Review

April 25: The Cowboy Lassos a Bride
Queentutt's World of Escapism
For the Love of Bookends - review
Harps Romance Book Review
Welcome to My World of Dreams
Erzabet's Enchantments
Room With Books
The Divas of Desire
Angels with Attitude Book Reviews
Rainy Dayz Reviewz
The Book Review

Author Bio:

Cora Seton loves cowboys, country life, gardening, bike-riding, and lazing around with a good book. Mother of four, wife to a computer programmer/eco-farmer, she ditched her California lifestyle nine years ago and moved to a remote logging town in northwestern British Columbia.

Like the characters in her novels, Cora enjoys old-fashioned pursuits and modern technology, spending mornings transforming a neglected one-acre lot into a paradise of orchards, berry bushes and market gardens, and afternoons writing the latest Chance Creek romance novel on her iPad mini. Visit to read about new releases, contests and other cool events!

To connect with the author online:

Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Google + | Amazon Author Page | BN Author Page | Smashwords Author Page

Monday, April 21

Quote-Tastic: I can't compete with that.

This meme is about sharing your favorite quotes and the books they come from!
Hosted by Anna at Herding Cats and Burning Soup.

Everyone is welcome to join in: Readers, Bloggers & Authors.

Just grab the button and link back to Herding Cats and Burning Soup.

Fairies in My Fireplace by R.L. Naquin

“Who would tranq a thunderbird?” I smoothed my hand across the bird’s back, thinking. “If someone shot at him, he probably took flight to get away. I wonder if it was dumb luck that brought him or if he came here for sanctuary.” I glanced around at the menagerie gathered in my yard, answering my own question.

Andrew laughed. “My darling, dumb luck has nothing to do with it. You’re the go-to girl for all things that go bump in the night.”

Edgar fell asleep while we checked him over for more darts. Without a chemistry lab, we couldn’t find out what he’d been juiced with, but we had to assume it was something pretty standard. We agreed it probably wouldn’t do any lasting damage and dragged a big plastic storage bin near him so he’d have water when he woke. Not much else we could do.

Meanwhile, Vi and Kam had Lulu clean, dry, dressed and settled on a blanket in the garage. They sat near her while Kam combed out the knots in Vi’s hair.

The harpy was covered, at least. To my great sadness, they’d confiscated my favorite tie-dyed shirt for the cause. They’d ripped the back to fit it around where her human waist widened and turned bird, then tied the ends in a knot in the front. I sighed. I’d BeDazzled the Scooby-Doo graphic myself.

I’d staged the puppywash along the side of the house, so our privacy would be protected from passing cars. The snoring thunderbird, the mangy hellhound and the sparkling harpy were out of sight from the road.

The front half of the driveway was another matter.

The sound of tires crunching on gravel sent me running to intercept an unknown visitor from getting within visual range.

“Crap crap crap,” I said, jogging around to the front of the house.

My heart raced. These creatures as a group were called the Hidden for a reason. Regular humans shouldn’t see them. They came to me for help. Only a few non-Hidden people in my life knew what was going on, and one of them was already here. I had to intercept whoever was out there before they saw something I couldn’t explain.

When I saw the familiar blue sedan pull in behind Andrew’s beat-up station wagon, my heart thudded harder, and my jog turned into a sprint.

“Riley!” As he climbed out of the car, I slammed into him, knocking him backward.

He laughed and caught me, wrapping his arms around me. I buried my face in his neck and inhaled the scent of spices and citrus and ocean, a combination that filled my head with naughty thoughts and my heart with calm and safety.

Riley pulled back and looked down at me with his laughing gray eyes. “You’re all wet. Why are you all wet? Not that I mind.” He grinned and waggled his eyebrows. I glanced down at my soaked white tee, my lime-green bra flashing through it like a traffic light.

I shrugged. “You’ve been gone for two weeks. I figured a wet T-shirt contest might drum up some attention.”

“Oh, I see.” He pretended to be put out. “I leave you alone for five minutes and you try to replace me. Did you at least win the contest?”

I released a melodramatic sigh and shook my head. “No. The harpy won. She didn’t have a shirt on at all. I can’t compete with that.”

This is the third book in the Monster Haven series and Zoey continues to delight me with her eccentric fashion choices and her optimistic attitude. This book completes the story arc that has been going on concerning the missing Aegis in general and Zoey's missing mother in particular.  Once again, solving the problems they face is a team effort, with Zoey taking the lead.  There are some new characters introduced that I think we will be seeing more of in later books. Overall this was a great addition to the series and I love learning more and more about Zoey's world.

A migration of mythical creatures has begun, and more and more of them are landing on Zoey Donovan's doorstep. As the only Aegis left in the country, it falls to her to protect the Hidden and keep them safe—and her house has become a sanctuary for water sprites, goblins, harpies, djinn and more.

Keeping track of her boarders is a full-time job, and Zoey's already got her hands full trying to run her wedding planning business. Good thing she has a resident closet monster to keep her organized, and a hot Reaper boyfriend to help her relax every once in a while.

But she can't keep up monster-triage indefinitely, and as more Hidden arrive, it becomes clear that someone—or something—is hunting them. In the midst of planning an event for a notoriously difficult client, Zoey's got to figure out who's behind the hunt…and she's got to stop them before there are no Hidden left.

Available at the following retailers:
Amazon     BN    Kobo     OmniLit

Sunday, April 20

Audiobook Review: Biting Cold by Chloe Neill

This is book 6 of the Chicagoland Vampire Series by Chloe Neill, and I wasn't 3 sentences in before I was completely ticked off.  Why? Because we have a new narrator, Sophie Eastlake. Not that she didn't do a good job. Kinda. I guess.  But I had Cynthia Halloway's voice locked in my head and suddenly nobody sounded like they once did and I am having trouble figuring out who is who.  To be honest, I had a huge problem with the male voices for the first quarter of the book; they all sounded alike to each other. It felt just like someone had taken a well loved tv show cast and replaced everyone of the actors, but went on as if nothing had changed. Let's just say that I'm a bit bitter about the change and continue on.

Biting Cold jumps right into the story with Merit and Ethan having to head out after Mallory to stop her from gaining the Maleficent once again. Mallory managed to escape the Order, and was headed for Nebraska and the empty nuclear warhead silo that is was being housed in. Just before they leave out, they get the news that former Mayor Seth Tate was released as well.  And so it becomes a race to see who would get to it first.

At first I thought Ethan had finally got his shit together after being killed and brought back, but he once again pulled his "I can't be with you right now" crap. I seriously don't understand how come Merit didn't give up on him once and for all. Fortunately this time, Merit got some better advice than, "Be the bigger person, be professional, let him see what he's missing." The new advice was more along the lines of "smack him upside his head till he pulls it out of his ass." Merit did a very nice job performing the cranial rectal inversion and what follows is a very nice smexy scene that was long overdue between Merit and Ethan.

This was a book very much about forgiveness and redemption leading to new beginnings.  It was the closing of a couple different story arcs and the beginnings of others.  The next book, House Rules should prove very interesting.  I gave this book 3 stars, mainly because I am still cranky about the narrator change.
Turned into a vampire against her will, twenty-eight-year-old Merit found her way into the dark circle of Chicago’s vampire underground, where she learned there was more to supernaturals than met the eye—and more supernaturals than the public ever imagined. And not all the secrets she learned were for sharing—among humans or inhumans.

Now Merit is on the hunt, charging across the stark American Midwest, tailing a rogue supernatural intent on stealing an ancient artifact that could unleash catastrophic evil on the world. But Merit is also the prey. An enemy of Chicagoland is hunting her, and he’ll stop at nothing to get the book for himself. No mercy allowed. No rules apply. No lives spared. The race is on.

Available at the following retailers:
Amazon     BN    Audible    Audiobook Stand
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