Friday, December 30, 2011

Free ebook Friday! Free read! Bastard by Brenda Novak

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To some men honor is just a word….


Jeannette Boucher, a young French beauty from a family left penniless by the revolution, must marry against her will to save them all from ruin. But almost immediately after the vows are spoken, she learns that her old English husband is impotent—and in his desire for an heir, he plans to compromise her in the worst way.

Determined to escape such a fate, she stows away on one of His Majesty’s frigates. But a woman alone is in constant danger.

To Lieutenant Treynor, honor means everything….

Born a bastard to a wayward marquise, Lieutenant Crawford Treynor was given to a poor farmer to raise and was maltreated until he ran away to join the Royal Navy. Treynor is determined to prove he’s as good as any other man and rise to captain his own frigate. But once he finds Jeannette aboard The Tempest he must decide whether to return her to the man he knows would abuse her—or risk everything, even his life, to keep her safe.

Hurry and grab this book. These things don't stay on sale indefinitely and the regular price is $2.99. Try Brenda Novak out for free. I have not read any of her historicals and this one has great reviews so far.
get it here. I'm sorry this is for kindle users only. www.amazon.com/The-Bastard-ebook


Find out more about Brenda Novak and her books here www.brendanovak.com

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tiger Eye (Dirk & Steele Series #1) by Marjorie M. Liu

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Review by Sarah
Back of the Book Blurb:

The first book in Marjorie M. Liu's extraordinary Dirk & Steele Series!

Long ago they roamed the earth — dragons, tigers . . . shapeshifters — men who wore the forms of beasts. Their world was magic. Now it is gone. But some remain . . .

He looks out of place in Dela Reese's Beijing hotel room— exotic and poignant, some mythic, tragic hero of an epic tale. With his feline yellow eyes, he's like nothing from her world. Yet Dela has danced through the echo of his soul and knows this warrior will obey her every command.

Hari has been used and abused for millennia. But he sees, upon his release from the riddle box, that this new mistress is different. There is a hidden power in Dela's eyes—and with her, he may regain all that was lost to him. Where once he savaged, now he must protect; where before he knew only hatred, now he must embrace love. Dela is the key.

For Dela, he will risk all.
Review: This is Liu's debut novel (2005) and the first book in the Dirk & Steele series (about a secret psychic detective/security type agency). It's a fun, fast read full of romance, action, magic and danger and I zipped right through it. As the novel begins, Dela is in China and buys an ancient puzzle box from a mysterious old woman. She is quickly assaulted by a creepy man who wants the box, but escapes and returns to her hotel room, where she opens it and out comes Hari. Hari is a seven foot tall hunky tiger shifter who was cursed to be imprisoned in the box over two thousand years ago, and is released as a slave to whoever buys and opens the box. Dela is horrified by Hari's story and promises to give him his freedom and try to break the curse. But before they can figure anything out an assassin comes to Dela's hotel room and attacks her. Soon Dela and Hari are being pursued by both an unknown assassin and an evil mage, and they head to the United States, where Dela has an extensive family and friend network of fellow psychics of varying abilities who are able to protect her and figure out who wants her dead.

The characters are really well developed in this book - Dela, Hari and the rest are believable, interesting, multi-dimensional, full of quirks and foibles. The relationship between Dela and Hari develops easily and naturally as they get to know each other, building trust, respect, affection and lots of lust. Liu can write sexy scenes with the best of them, and those scenes combined with a real sense of danger, and genuine humor as Dela brings Hari up to speed on the 21st century (he was last let out of the box 600 years ago), mark Liu as one of the best writers of paranormal romance. I've read several of her books, but this was the first Dirk & Steele book for me, and I am very excited to read the rest. Tiger Eye introduced at least a half dozen characters whose stories I can't wait to read.
5 out of 5 Modokker Book Pick Stars

Fore more information check out the author's website at www.marjoriemliu.com.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Harlequin Holiday Collection: Four Classic Seasonal Novellas

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Review by Sarah
Back of the Book Blurb:


A struggling B&B owner scrambles to hide the dead body wrapped in her Christmas tree from a visiting camera crew—and from her still-irresistible reporter ex. A waitress and a sexy FBI agent mix business with pleasure while investigating a crime over the holidays. A crime lab worker finds herself in danger six days before Christmas...and only her off-limits but oh-so-attractive coworker can help. And two childhood friends rediscover their sense of wonder—and love—when reunited for the holidays.

Discover these four classic seasonal novellas:

And a Dead Guy in a Pear Tree by Leslie Kelly (2007)

Seduced by the Season by Merline Lovelace (2008)

Evidence of Desire by Debra Webb (2008)

Season of Wonder by Marta Perry (2002)



Review: Released as a free e-book in 2011, this collection includes four holiday-themed romance novellas. They were a fun, fast read and the first three were pretty good.

And a Dead Guy in a Pear Tree is the story of Zach and Holly, two college sweethearts who haven't seen each other in eight years, since they had a huge argument and misunderstanding. Holly has returned to her hometown and has turned her grandparents' mansion into a bed and breakfast. But the B&B isn't doing well, and her last chance to save the family home is to get good publicity from a famous TV travel show. But right before the TV crew shows up, a dead guy pops out of the Christmas tree she's just bought. Turns out he was an escaped criminal, and Zach, now a crime reporter, has tracked him to his hometown. He and Holly soon reunite, sparks fly, and there are some genuinely funny, zany shenanigans as they try to hide the dead guy until after the travel show has finished filming. This novella was fun, cute and sexy.

Seduced by the Season takes place in Dublin, Ireland and is notable for creating a very strong sense of place in a short story, using lots of history and detail to transport the reader into the story. Clint is an FBI agent on the trail of an art thief, and Sophie is a waitress at the local tavern. Clint is feeling out of his league on this case, as he knows nothing about art. When he learns that Sophie is working her way through her PhD in Irish art, he enlists her assistance to use her expertise. The fact that they are both incredibly attracted to each other adds romantic suspense to the story. Sophie is a bit of an odd character, as she is an American who likes to speak with a thick Irish brogue at times, but overall this was an entertaining and lovely story.

Evidence of Desire is the story of Olivia and Jacob, two crime lab forensic scientists. Olivia has just relocated from Boston, and has the hots for Jacob, who has shown zero interest in her. When Olivia starts to experience a string of suspiciously bad luck (car won't start, work goes missing, computer issues, she's being followed), Jacob helps her out and Olivia decides to throw herself at him, hoping for the best, in spite of the fact that her new workplace discourages office romances and Jacob has been little more than brusque with her. So although that felt stalkerish/forced, the mystery of Olivia's "bad luck" was well done and left me guessing until the end.

Season of Wonder is the only dud in the collection. It is the shortest of the four or else I wouldn't have finished it. Allison has returned to her family's island cottage to prepare it for selling. She is accompanied by her daughter, and is recovering from a divorce. When she gets to the island after an absence of 15 years, she soon meets up with her childhood friend David, who has been in love with her his whole life. Before their initial conversation is over David has agreed to be her free handyman thinking she's moving back, and Allison decides not to tell him she's getting it ready for sale. Nice, huh? Allison is condescending and snarky, and David keeps wondering what happened to his "angel-girl". His "angel-girl" says things like "I see you still say 'Hey' instead of 'Hi'" - so of course David mends her cold, broken heart and there's a happy ending. It was stiff, awkward and hard to read.

3 out of 5 Modokker Book Pick Stars

Check out Leslie Kelly's Harlequin Blaze title Slow Hands - it's currently being offered as a free e-book

Friday, December 23, 2011

Book Review: Four for Christmas by RG Alexander

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Dreaming of a White Christmas led her straight into their arms…


In this holiday spin off of the bestselling novella Three For Me? Saving a man in a snowstorm leads Georgia Bale to an isolated cabin, where three men have an important promise to keep. A promise Georgia soon becomes caught up in herself.

She just wanted to survive Christmas, and her bad holiday karma. She had no idea that accepting a friend’s invitation to Colorado would lead her to her perfect man. Times three.

What does an eccentric writer do when a compassionate doctor, a dominant police officer, and a handsome adrenaline junkie only have eyes for her?

Use her imagination.

But when the storm clears, she’ll have to decide which path to take. The way back home, or the road less traveled.

Warning: A bit of heart tugging, excessive use of imagination, role playing (the dirty kind), foursomes, holiday magic, a guardian angel or two… and the kinky use of holiday themed beverages.


For starters i really loved the cover of this book. Covers are usually what first attracts me to a book. This one pops right out at you. I like all kinds of romance related genre's including erotica. It's not often as emotional as this one was. Georgia used to love Christmas and then suddenly it seemed to suck every year. She couldn't get into the spirit of it. She decides to visit her friend in Colorado for Christmas in the hope this year it would help her mood. In the mountains of Colorado in a snow storm she is a little lost and ends up with a flat on her rental SUV. Her faith dog Roux ( Isn't that the cutest name) gets out with her to change the tire and Roux runs off and finds a man in the snow. She ends up saving him and his foster brother ends up saving her when she starts feeling the effects of the cold in her southern outerwear. This sets her up in a cabin with 3 foster brothers. A doctor, a policeman and a adrenaline junkie. Three big ole strapping guys who of course are sexy as hell and as sweet as they come. She find herself attracted to all three and they to her. Her best friend is in a relationship with a guy and a girl, but is something like that for her?  This is the erotic part of the story but the heart tugging comes later. The three foster brothers ( Chris, James and  Flynn) used to be four. One was in the Marines and didn't make it home but he sent these gifts and letters to his brothers every year and this year they had the last one he sent.  Georgia had this awesome grandpa that used to tell her stories about her grandma that she never met.  He was a wonderful man with a big heart and somehow the grandpa and the other Foster brother ( Nick) links them all together. I won't tell you how because you need to read the book to find out but i had a few OMG OMG moments and it wasn't from the sex scenes which were fantastic btw. lol  This was one of the best erotica romances I have read.  There is great sex scenes, good connections between the characters and a kick ass story to go with it all. I read this in  one sitting and was sad to see it end. I am going to be buying the novella related to this one to read. The first chapter is at the back of this one for you to get a peek at. 5 out of 5 Modokker Book Pick stars for Four for Christmas by RG Alexander.

Find out more about RG at her website here www.rgalexander.com . You can also find her as part of the Smutketeers blog with a bunch of Fabulous authors here www.smutketeers.com .

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Book review: Undeniably Yours (Kowalski series) by Shannon Stacey

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Available in ebook for only right now. Pre order for paperback now for Feb. 2012 release

Undeniably Yours by Shannon Stacey
One-night stand + two percent condom failure rate = happily ever after?

Bar owner Kevin Kowalski is used to women throwing their phone numbers at him, but lately he’s more interested in finding a woman to settle down with. A woman like Beth Hansen. If only their first meeting hadn’t gone so badly…

Beth’s tending bar at a wedding when she comes face to face with a tuxedo-clad man she never thought she’d see again. She tries to keep her distance from Kevin but, by last call, she can’t say no to his too-blue eyes or the invitation back to his room. Then she slips out before breakfast without leaving a note and, despite their precautions, pregnant.

Kevin quickly warms to the idea of being a dad and to seeing where things go with Beth. After all, he’s not the player she thinks he is. But she’s not ready for a relationship and, given his reputation, it’s going to take a lot to convince her to go on a second date with the father of her child…

This is the 2nd book in the Kowalski series.  For some unknown reason I've been reading these backward. I read book 3 months ago and now this and book one will be next. Pretty sure they would be better in order but I haven't had any real problems reading them my backward way. lol This book focuses on Kevin Kowalski. Six foot two and sexy as all get out bar owner. He doesn't take any BS from patrons in his bar so when a man gets a little drunk grabby with a woman who appears to be his date he attempts to save her from him. All is not what it seems and the man is the woman boss instead. The drunk and slightly disorderly guy ends up with a broken nose and the woman ends up fired from her job. That woman being Beth Hanson who is a wanderer by nature or so she thinks. She likes to travel and find jobs to pay her way as she moves from place to place.  They meet again at Kevin's brothers wedding and sparks fly and after a hot night of sex Beth runs off when she thinks she just one of Kevin's many women. Turns out she's pregnant though and when Kevin finds out he's excited and wants a relationship with Beth. Beth resists often. This book made me laugh a lot. I just love the Kowalski family they are such a big boisterous family and Beth is a only child and a over protected one at that which causes her need to roam. Kevin and the Kowalski clan slowly teach her what a big loving family can give her and that it's time to quit moving around and settle down. The only thing that bugged me about this book is the continued harping on Kevin by Beth about all the cocktail napkins he gets from women in the bar with their phone numbers on them. Grated on my nerves toward the end but the ending made up for it with the way Beth finally decided she loved Kevin and wanted to be with him permanently. Way sweet and a great read too. 4 out of 5 Modokker Book Pick stars for Undeniably Yours by Shannon Stacey.

To find out more about Shannon Stacey, this series and her other books click here www.shannonstacey.com .

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Book review: Last Spy Standing by Dana Marton

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Black ops specialist Mitch Mendoza had thought this South American rescue mission would be routine. But the jungle held unexpected dangers: deadly snakes, armed drug runners and Megan Cassidy. The undercover CIA agent had legs for miles and a hidden agenda—one that interfered with Mitch's plans. So though he was a lone wolf, he had to keep her close, or risk letting his mission fail. After years of working alone, Mitch found himself distracted by Megan's steely resolve and her soft curves. And he couldn't afford that. Not if he wanted this assignment to be a success…and get both of them out of the jungle alive.

This is another face paced actioned packed adventure book from Dana Marton. There are no wasted pages or words in this book. Mitch and Megan are both the good guys but neither one knows that about the other.
Megan works for the CIA and has been undercover for a year. She has another hidden agenda for her mission as well. Her brother is held captive she believes by a major bad guy and she needs to get into his compound to find him. Mitch has a mission two get a snot nosed kid ( by his standards) out of the compound of a drug lord that Megan has infiltrated for the past year. He breaks him out but Megan gets him back and a kind of tug of war goes on through the whole book.  Somehow Dana Marton gives a bigger book feel to a short page book. I don't know how she does it but it works. There was a sad surprise at the end that broke my heart but you also get the happy ending you hope for. 4 out of 5 Modokker Book Pick stars for Last Spy Standing by Dana Marton.
 
 
 
 
Find out more about Dana Marton and her books by visiting her website here www.danamarton.com . You can read a excerpt of this book there as well.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Book review: Tall, Dark and Lonesome by Debra Dixon (Loveswept)

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Originally released December of 1993 Re-issued August of 2011
Tall, Dark and Lonesome by Debra Dixon

ZACH - A Confident Cowboy Who Staked His Claim, Then Dared Her to Deny It...


He was the perfect symbol of the West, columnist Niki Devlin decided, but rugged trail boss Zach Weston made her forget to breathe! Still pained by the scandal that haunted her past, she'd reluctantly returned to Wyoming to write about his vacation cattle drive, but from the moment he pulled her from the mud into his arms, she wanted to scorch his iron control--to play with the fire in his gray eyes.

He Branded Her with His Gaze, and with His Lips

Zach wasn't looking for a trail romance, but he couldn't hold the feisty flirt and not kiss her until she moaned his name. He wanted all of her, every bit he could touch and taste, every secret and every sigh, but Niki knew she'd destroy his dreams of happy-ever-after once she confessed the truth. Zach told her she could keep running forever, or she could finally stop--but was she ready to be lassoed by love?

This is a shorter book just 224 pages. The Loveswept line was relaunched this past summer and i believe this was one of the first books in that line re-issued with a sexy new cover. Nikki writes for a newspaper and her boss sends her to Wyoming to ride with a cattle drive vacation that people from all over do to get away from their lives. Nikki has a past in Wyoming right there where the cattle drive ranch is. Years later after some awful happened to her she is still paying the price if no where but in her own head. Zach owns the ranch and is rich and is looking to run for the Wyoming State senate. Exactly what Nikki doesn't want. A public life. She's spent years hiding from the public especially the Wyoming public. Zach is intrigued by Nikki. She's not what he expected to find when he meets her. She tough and capable and hiding something. The sparks starts flying right away though and both fight it for a while until they just can't anymore.

I liked this short little read. The only real clear signal that it's dated is the mention of acid wash jeans a couple times. Other wise i don't think you can tell this is not a new book. I enjoy by cowboy books and this is definitely a nice little cowboy read.  I liked the cattle drives scenes and the two dogs were one of the highlights of the book. Brass and Snicker were the two prize Australian trail dogs that worked with Zach to move the cattle.  Nikki spends her time berating herself for past sins and Zach once he gets over himself tries to get her to see it doesn't matter. The one problem i had was considering what happened to Nikki in her past she has unprotected sex with Zach. Not once but twice. I thought i missed the part about condoms or at least are you on the pill, but it never happened.  Might be the dated 1992 first release showing. All in all i enjoyed the book. 3 out 5 Modokker Book Pick stars for Tall, Dark and Lonesome. Find more info on this book by checking out Debra Dixon's website by clicking here.http://debradixon.com/books/TallDarkandLonesome.html

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Kissing Kris Kringle Winner!! Is it you??

Just in time for Christmas we have a winner of the Kissing Kris Kringle giveaway.

The winner is  user ID lgm52!! Congrats! I've just sent you a email.

If you like the sounds and looks of this book you can buy ot for only 99 cents! Available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Buy links below and you can also gift these to others from both websites.

Amazon for Kindle

Barnes and Noble for Nook


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Friday, December 16, 2011

Free ebook Friday!! All I want for Christmas by Lisa Mondello

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Sometimes fate needs a little hand…


Santa Claus is going to have a rough season... Lauren Alexander is raising her daughter alone. Abandoned by her family for her decision to keep her daughter Kristen, she has done a pretty good job for the last six years. Or she thought she had. That's why she is crushed when little Kristen gives up her wish for a toy or goodie and instead asks Santa for a present for her mother. She wants Santa to bring a Daddy. Delivering Daddies isn't Santa's bag.

But this Santa has a plan...

Kyle Preston knows what it is like to be abandoned too. Luckily he found the support of loving adoptive parents and has turned himself into one of the most successful Real Estate developers in town.

Building a house is easy. Building someone's trust is a whole other story. But with a little helping hand, a little Christmas magic can make all the difference in the world.

Free from Amazon for Kindle click here www.amazon.com/All-Want-Christmas-You
 
Find Lisa Mondello here www.lisamondello.blogspot.com

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Book Review: Holiday Kisses Alison Kent,Jaci Burton, HelenKay Dimon,Shannon Stacey

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It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like...Love!


A man gives the gift of trust and receives a second chance at love in return. A woman helps to heal the wounded heart of a soldier. A couple finds that true love knows no distance. And a young widow learns that there can be two great loves in a lifetime. Love, romance and passion come together in this collection of four seasonal shorts.

Anthology includes:
This Time Next Year by Alison Kent
A Rare Gift by Jaci Burton
It's Not Christmas Without You by HelenKay Dimon
Mistletoe and Margaritas by Shannon Stacey

Stories also available for purchase separately.

This is four really good short novellas. Most novellas make me feel like i want more and i need more but really none of these really did that to me this time. As a matter of fact This Time Next Year i kind of forgot this was a novella. This Time Next Year by Alison Kent is about Brenna Keating trying to get to her grandmothers for Christmas before she leaves for a year in Africa as a volunteer nurse. A car crash in blizzard conditions lands her in the home of  Dr Dillion Craig home from the Army for good after spending a lot of time in a war zone. Each helps the others hearts heal but Dillion has the most to over come with his war time memories. I think this one was my favorite. First time reading Alison Kent to so that's a bonus. A+ for this one. A Rare Gift was Jaci Burton's contribution to the anthology.  This one is a bit of fun. Calliope has always been in love with Wyatt but Wyatt fell for her older sister first and now a few years divorced she's decided it's time to get her man.  Wyatt's construction company takes on the job of adding a addition on to Calliope's daycare center and that finds Wyatt the one in charge of work being done there. The man can't seem to get away from Calliope and that's just how she wants it. Cute and funny this one will make you laugh at Calliope antics to get her man. Solid B for this one. It's not Christmas Without you by HelenKay Dimon is the next one up in the anthology and another funny one. Carrie moved to Washing DC for her dream job. The man she loves Austin thought it was going to be temporary. He didn't understand her dream. It was to hard to face him again for Christmas so Carrie decided to stay in DC and work this year. Once Austin finds this out he decides it's time to go get his woman and drags his brother Spence off with him to DC to set up a Christmas tree lot across from her apartment and find a way to get her to see she belongs back in West Virginia back home with him. What follows is some of the funniest scenes. I admit i did some giggling. Will Austin ever get the picture she's not just playing at a career this is what she loves. Definite A material here folks. The last one Mistletoe and Margaritas by Shannon Stacey bring up the end of this anthology book. This was had it's funny moments but was sweet too. Claire meets these two incredible guys who are best friends. Marries one who dies in a terrible car accident she partly blames herself for. The other guy, Justin who has been her best friend secretly has been in love with her. He feels guilt for wanting his best friends wife. Claire starts finding she has feelings for Justin that are not best friend type feelings. Now what? Attending a party together and getting a little sloshed gives Claire the courage to go after her man but can they truly get past the feelings of guilt to find love? This one made me want to go for a ride in a snow plow truck. Read the book to find out why. A- for this one. As a whole this was one of the best Christmas themed books I have read this year. I Hope you'll give it a whirl i don't think you'll be disappointed.  5 out of 5 Modokker Book Pick Stars for Holiday Kisses. Find out more about the authors by clicking the links below. The anthology cover is a beauty but if you go the authors websites you can see their you can see their individual covers which are pretty cool as well.

www.alisonkent.com
www.jaciburton.com
www.helenkaydimon.com
www.shannonstacey.com

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Loveswept Holiday Blog Hop 12/12/12 through 1/8/12 Enter now!








Book Review and Giveaway: Kissing Kris Kringle by Erin Quinn

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Erin Quinn
Available now in ebook format only .99 cents Amazon and B&N

KISSING KRIS KRINGLE


Kris Kringle is just an average guy living in the tiny town of North Pole, Maine where Christmas isn’t just a holiday—it’s a way of life. But not for Kris. He might be named after the big guy in red, but Kris is more Scrooge than Santa.

Until he wakes up from a night of partying with his friends to find himself in possession of a Santa suit, a toy bag and a puppy. Kris soon discovers that he’s been relegated to Santa’s naughty list and there’s only one way to get his name removed....put on the suit and spread some cheer.

Lucky for Kris every cloud has a silver snowflake and his quest to get off that list lands him in the arms of the woman he’s been lusting after for years.

It takes a little magic, but Kris is about to get everything he didn’t even know he wanted for Christmas.


This is a short little novella well worth the 99 cent price tag for some fun Christmas reading. Kris is kind of the town scrooge. When he was a boys his dad was a UPS driver out working on Christmas eve when he was hit and killed by a drunk driver. Not to many years later his mom died too and he thinks it was from a broken heart no matter what the doctors said. Because of this he hates Christmas. Thing is he lives in a town called North Pole and all the streets there have Christmas themed names and it seems all the people do too. Kind of hard to get away from Christmas in December at least. After a night of to much drinking with friends he finds himself in the possession of a Santa suit complete with bag and a puppy. Hard as he tries he can't get out of wearing the suit. In doing so he gets to be around a long lost love of his from his school years, Holly. Can he find love and find his Christmas spirit? What do you think? lol This is the cutest story with a dash of sexy to with it. I love how the whole book has a Christmas theme even the characters names. I give Kissing Kris Kringle 4 out of 5 Modokker Book Picks stars. A definite pick me up if you need to get into the Christmas spirit.

Find out more about Erin Quinn this book and her other books here www.ErinQuinn.com

Erin has graciously offered up a copy of Krissing Kris Kringle for one commenter today. Leave a comment with your email please and your entered.  example type it as (YOU at YAHOO dot COM) This is a ebook as it is the only format it is offered in. Thanks! Ends Friday!!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Book review: A Small Town Christmas by Jill Shalvis, Hope Ramsay Katie Lane

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Available now from Amazon and Barnes and Noble for $2.99


Three heartwarming holiday stories


to prove that love is the greatest gift of all

Kissing Santa Claus by Jill Shalvis

NASCAR driver Logan Perrish returns to Lucky Harbor, Washington, with love in his heart and a ring in his pocket. But can Sandy Jansen forget the past and give him a second chance? Or will Logan be spending another Christmas alone?


I'll Be Home for Christmas by Hope Ramsay

After ignoring the advice of Miz Miriam Randall, local matchmaker, Annie Roberts expects another hum drum holiday in Last Chance, South Carolina. But when a stray cat arrives in the arms of Army sergeant Matt Jasper, a calico named Holly just may be the best matchmaker of all.

O Little Town of Bramble by Katie Lane

All Ethan Miller wants for Christmas is to celebrate in Bramble, Texas, with family and friends. But when his childhood neighbor, Samantha Henderson, comes home for the holiday, Ethan realizes that the girl-next-door could be the girl of his dreams.

This is a real quick read. Good for taking with you to appointments when you have some time to read. With three shorter stories you can get through each one pretty quick. Very Christmas spirited but not overly so you could choke. lol If you read Jill Shalvis' Lucky Harbor series her story Kissing Santa Claus takes place in Lucky Harbor when Logan Perrish gets wise and comes back to get Sandy the town clerk he whirlwind loved and left behind months ago. He's going to have to work hard to get her to believe in him. Being Santa Claus might help. Funny and fun and sweet. A+ for this one. The second story is I'll be home for Christmas by Hope Ramsay she writes a series called Last Chance and this is part of that i believe. Matt Jasper shows up in town freshly out of the Army after years of service with a gift for a old Army buddies grandmother. He tells himself he's friend wanted his grandmother to have the present and he is just making sure that happens ( friend is deceased) In reality his friend Nick had told Matt all about his hometown and growing up there and his ex-girlfriend he never got over. He finds himself staying at her house and hanging out with her decorating and doing Christmas stuff. He has feeling for Annie his friends ex girlfriend but he has doubts as to his welcome in this town too. This was a touching slightly sad story with a happy ending. Very nice. I give is a B. The last one is called O Little Town of Bramble by Katie Lane. This was was fun too. Some of the characters seemed familiar to me although i know i have not read this author before. Then i remembered i have her last two releases on my TBR pile that i won from another blog. I had read the back pack blurbs and knew i wanted to read them. I will be doing that soon too. Ethan is 30 and has put off his life pretty much for 2 reasons. His parents farm. He felt he needed to stay and help out especially after his dad fell and got hurt. He was a little afraid. Yup he was a bit nervous to go off to college so he put it off and never did get to go. Now his parents announce that since he didn't use the college fund money he didn't even know he had, that they are going to move to the beach and let him have the farm. Top that off with the girl next door he grew up with a loved like a sibling is back for Christmas and newly graduated veterinarian which was his dream. Lots of stuff for one body to deal with until he figures out that maybe what he felt for the girl next door wasn't sibling love but something else. Cute and funny Christmas story. Make you want to know more about the other characters as well. I give it a A. As a whole i give A Small Town Christmas 4 out of 5 stars. A nice Christmas read anyone can enjoy.

Find out more about the authors from the links below.
www.hoperamsay.com
www.jillshalvis.com
www.katielanebooks.com

Friday, December 9, 2011

Book review: A Vampire for Christmas by Michele Hauf, Alexis Morgan, Laurie London,Caridad PiƱeiro

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A Vampire for Christmas:
Available now from Harlequin, Amazon, Barnes and Noble

 Enchanted by Blood
Monsters Don't Do Christmas
When Herald Angels Sing
All I Want For Christmas


All they want for Christmas is you…


It's the time of year for twinkling lights on trees and kisses under the mistletoe. Yet the passing of another year means nothing to the stunning immortals who lurk in the shadows of the new-fallen snow.

And they don't care if you've been naughty or nice.

Let four fanged lovers open your eyes to a passion you never dared to imagine. After all, there's no place like home for the holidays—and these dazzling vampires can't wait for an invitation.

I've never read a anthology Christmas paranormal book before. This was new for me and i enjoyed trying it out. There are four stories by four great authors but it was kind of hit or miss for me. The first one Enchanted by Blood by Laurie London was pretty good. I like the idea of the vampire that's a corporate guy and a man in charge. Poor guy had to give up his true love for duty or so he thought. A chance run in with her a year later and he's in the soup all over again but this time he doesn't want to let her go. Give it a A! The 2nd one is Monsters Don't do Christmas by Michele Hauf was OK but not my favorite. The guy Daniel was a big shot before a late night attack left him a vampire and then he started feeling sorry for himself. He was a good guy but he was slightly wimpy in my mind. Olivia was just not that believable to me. I know it's fiction but her character didn't work for me. The story was enjoyable but not my favorite. I'll give is a C. The 3rd is When Herald Angels sing by Caridad Pineiro.  This one was good but probably could have been a whole lot better as a full story instead of a novella. It could use a lot more details and well time. Everything happens quickly. Reminded me of the movie A Christmas Carol. Kind of the same concept but with vampires. The guy Damien has had a hard life and lives his life rough but the Archangel Raphael thinks he could be redeemed and enlists Angelina as his guardian angel to help him find the error of his ways. Turns out they both needed to learn a lesson. Good read. I'll give it a B. The last one was my favorite. All i want for Christmas by Alexis Morgan. Might be my love of Alpha males but i loved the characters in this one. Eaghan is a hotter than hell vampire cop. He's trying to bust some vamps who are being bad and has to use the diner owned by Della as cover. Problem is they are attracted to each other and Della is human. She doesn't know about vampires or werewolves and fae. She's going to find out because they are all around her. This one would be awesome as a full book. By far my favorite. I'd give it a A! The book as a whole was enjoyable and of the four authors i have only read  one before so it was a intro to the other authors writing as well which is always a neat side effect to anthology books. I give A Vampire for Christmas 3 and 1/2 Modokker Book Pick stars.

Find out more about the authors at the links below.
www.michelehauf.com
www.caridadpineiro.com
www.laurielondonbooks.com
www.alexismorgan.com

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Book review: Lord of the Abyss (Royal House of Shadows #4 - Harlequin Nocturne #125) by Nalini Singh

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This review by Sarah.

Back of the Book Blurb:




Once upon a time…the Blood Sorcerer vanquished the kingdom of Elden. To save their children, the queen scattered them to safety and the king filled them with vengeance. Only a magical timepiece connects the four royal heirs. Now they must return and save Elden…and time is running out….As the dark Lord who condemns souls to damnation in the Abyss, Micah is nothing but a feared monster. He has no idea he is the last heir of Elden. Only one woman knows—the daughter of his enemy. Liliana sees past his impenetrable black armor to the prince inside. To help Micah remember, she must brave his dark, dangerous lair. Because they only have until midnight to save Elden.

Review: Lord of the Abyss is easily my favorite book in the House of Shadows Series, a four book series published by Harlequin Nocturne. Each of the books is the story of a royal heir of Elden, who are four siblings separated by magic during the bloody massacre of their parents and the conquest of their kingdom. The stories can be read as stand-alone books, but there is a well-constructed framework linking them together, as the heirs of Elden are running out of time to reclaim their kingdom. Lord of the Abyss is the story of Micah, the youngest, and ends with the final battle between Micah and his siblings and the evil Blood Sorceror.

Written in a lush and rich style, Lord of the Abyss starts with a bang as Liliana magically arrives in the Black Castle, home of Micah, who is now the title character with no memories of his life before he became the Black Lord. Liliana knows that time is running out for the heirs of Elden - if they don't return to Elden and defeat the Blood Sorcerer, Elden will fall forever. Liliana is desperate to help Micah remember his past in time, but it is a dangerous business, as his memories are linked with pain and twisted sorcery.

The book has many elements of the classic "Beauty and the Beast" fairy tale, with Liliana as the ugly one and Micah as a fair haired god of a man hidden behind his black armor. Liliana barters her survival for her cooking skills, and she soon begins to unintentionally seduce Micah with her amazing cooking and her brave, stubborn intelligence and personality. Because Liliana was tortured her entire life by her father, she has no fear of the Lord of the Abyss, and is quite comfortable telling him no and bantering with him. Micah has never encountered anyone who didn't fear him, and is fascinated by the brave Liliana. As her delicious cooking begins to trigger sensory memories of his childhood, he finds himself drawn to Liliana and slowly falls in love with her. Liliana is shocked and nearly overcome by the attentions of Micah. Told her entire life that she is ugly and odd, she is confused by his straightforward attraction to her. The buildup of trust, respect and attraction was really well done. I found it believable, touching and sexy and could not stop reading this delightful story. Adding to this is a sense of suspense, as time is running out and the Blood Sorcerer is hunting Liliana. The final battle, the reunion of the siblings and the fate of Elden was resolved in an exciting and very satisfying manner. Good stuff!

For more information about Nalini Singh, please check out her website at http://www.nalinisingh.com/.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Romance Biggest Winner. Final four weeks!

Wow can you believe it? There are only 4 weeks left in the Romance Biggest Winner weight loss challenge.  On July 5, 2011 ninety-three authors and readers brought together by author Ashley March weighed in for the first time and we all began what we hoped would be a successful weight loss journey.  You can go here and read details of the first post on the Romance Biggest Winner Blog where results are announced every week for the previous weeks losses or gains. www.romancebiggestwinner.blogspot.com  Check out all the comments from people who talked about what they wanted to happen and what they were going to do to get there. Today was weigh in day for week 22 and the results will be posted today so feel free to check and see how everyone's doing now. We've lost a few people but the majority of people are still there and still working on their goals for this challenge. For myself i wanted to lose 30 lbs. I didn't think i could get there but i needed to set a goal and that came out to 5 lbs a month so i went with it. I am happy to day i am at 27 pounds lost so far with the 4 weeks left to get to 30. Of course with December there are lots of treats about and family dinners and such so it's kind of like a mine field out there. I did well at Thanksgiving a couple weeks ago and had my one and only Christmas dinner outside family and did good there. Thing is there are still pitfalls out there. I just hope i see them before i fall in. lol You can follow Romance Biggest Winner on twitter by searching the hashtag #RBW if you want to see what challengers are saying and we have a Facebook page here www.facebook.com/RomanceBiggestWinner and of course the blog www.romancebiggestwinner.blogspot.com/ Be sure to cheer on my team The Naughty Nines or Team 9. lol

I'll report back after the 5th of January and let you know how it all turned out for me. There is a $1,000 prize on the line. Wonder who will win??? Lots of people been working hard and losing pounds the last 22 weeks. Hard to say.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Book review: Only His by author Susan Mallery

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Only His (Nevada Hendrix)

October 2011

Wedding bells are ringing in Fool’s Gold, but not for Nevada Hendrix. Her triplet sisters are engaged, and even her mother has a more active love life than she does. Determined to make a fresh start, she applies for her dream job, only to discover that her new boss is her first love. Maybe she could overlook the fact that they’ve seen each other naked, but she’ll never forget the way he broke her heart.

Tucker Janack agrees to Nevada’s “business only” ground rules. After all, love is a trap that the construction millionaire has avoided his whole life. But when great business partners turn out to be so much more, every rule gets broken. Will either of them be willing to try again…or will their past get in the way?

This is book 6 in the Fools Gold series by Susan Mallery. Nevada is the last triplet to find love.Tucker and Nevada have a painful past together. Tucker is part owner is a big construction company that is coming to Fools Gold to build a big casino. Nevada wants a job on that build and goes for a interview to find he is the interviewer and her boss if she gets the job. The past come back to get her with a vengeance when Tucker's ex girlfriend from that painful past shows up in town too. Nevada decides she wants the challenge of the job if Tucker can forget the past she can too and they can maintain a professional relationship. Sounds reasonable doesn't it? The main focus is Tucker and Nevada but there are also her triplet sisters plans to marry and her moms dating and sex life and social lives of her friends. The Fools Gold series is not just focus on one couple they focus on a couple as well as the town and all the occupants. It's always fun to find out about past characters and perhaps future ones. This one made me laugh so many time. Many surprises that made me smile and laugh out loud and shake my head. 4 out of 5 Modokker Book Picks stars. Find out more about this series and the author Susan Mallery at her Fools Gold website. http://susanmallery.com/in_print.html

Friday, December 2, 2011

Book review and interview: Because of you by author Jessica Scott

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Available now at:
B & N

Amazon
Powell’s
iBookstore


“Keeping his men alive is all that matters to Sergeant First Class Shane Garrison. But meeting Jen St. James the night before his latest deployment makes Shane wonder if there’s more to life than war. He leaves for Iraq remembering a single kiss with a woman he’ll never see again- until a near fatal attack lands him back at home and in her care. Jen has survived her own brush with death and endured its scars. And yet there’s a fire in Shane that makes Jen forget all about her past. He may be her patient, but when this warrior looks her in the eyes, she feels – for the first time in a long time – like a woman. Shane is too proud to ask for help, but for Jen, caring for him is more than a duty -it’s a need. And as Jen guides Shane through the fires of healing, she finds something she never expected – her deepest desire.”

Review:
I was a bit nervous and excited to read this book. Wait and waited patiently for it to come out and went right to Amazon and downloaded it when it did. I read the Prologue and then i let it sit It sat some more til the weekend and ok wait it sat some more until i got over myself and picked up and started reading. I was afraid after hearing everyone say they cried it would be to emotional for me. I wasn't in the mood for that so in my head i debated for almost a week. I never heard anything bad about it so that wasn't a problem. Through the whole book i kept waiting to get hit with some big emotional thing that would overwhelm me. Thing is i read the whole thing and didn't cry even once.  It's definitely not that nothing big happened in the story because the whole thing was big for me. It was a journey for more than one person. You have Shane who is the alpha GI Joe man all the way. He feels responsible for every man under his command and well just about everyone he knows too. Sounds like a pretty good guy huh? Problem is he can't control everything so when something bad happens he blames himself. Then you have Jen the nurse who is there for everyone but still has issues with her bout from breast cancer a few years before. Shane meets Jen the night before he and his unit are to deploy to Iraq again. Sparks fly but what can you do when one of the two is leaving for months and months? A few months go by and things are intense in Iraq worse than Shane thought it would be. Suddenly he and two of his fellow soldiers under his command are seriously injured and sent back stateside where wouldn't you know it Jen is working at the military hospital as a nurse.  From there the two start a journey to finding themselves and each other and why sometimes you have to trust someone else and believe in yourself. Shane and Jen are the main characters in this book but you get introduced to several other characters who have a impact on the story and i suspect the main characters in future books.  The characters are so read you feel you know them by the end of the book.  The story is so well written i didn't feel at anytime the need to roll my eyes at something that doesn't sound right. Jessica leads you right to the end of the story and then snags you with a ending that makes you excited for the next one. You want to know what happens to all the characters. I know i do. 5 out of 5 Modokker Book Pick stars for Because of You by debut author Jessica Scott. Read more about Jessica and this book and her future projects here. www.jessicascott.net
Find Jessica on Twitter JessicaScott Facebook JessicaScottAuthor Goodreads JessicaScott/goodreads

Below is a short interview with the wonderful Jessica Scott. enjoy!
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1 What made you decide to write a military romance? Was it hard to get into considering what your day job is?


It wasn't hard for me to get into, honestly. The hard part was pulling from daily life and keeping things separate, you know? I can't seem to *not* write about soldiers. I've tried and written exactly one book that doesn't have military characters in it (and it will never see the light of day:). Apparently, my line into the collective unconscious is through writing about soldiers and I wouldn't have it any other way. I love what I do on both counts. Being a soldier is an honor and a privilege it's something I take incredibly seriously.

2 What's it like for you to have your spouse in the military also. Have you ever deployed at the same time? Did you meet your husband because of the military? PS That's where i met mine.

My husband and I deployed during OIF 09-11 in Mosul as part of 1st Cavalry Division. It was interesting to be in the same unit, that's for sure. I think we made it work and the really cool part about being deployed at the same time was that we kind of got to be a couple again. No kids. No housework. Just, you know, a war going on around us. But we made it work. It's always tough, though, being the spouse at home, worrying about your loved one forward. I can see both sides of it, you know? Being deployed is simpler, but not easier by any stretch. And being at home, while maybe not as dangerous, is arguably more stressful because you're mom, dad, everything falls on you to get done. It's a lot.

3 How did you research for this book? I imagine you have some of your own experience to draw on but did you have to look for more info is so where?

The military stuff wasn't all that tough for me to find out. I definitely got some funny looks from my brigade surgeon when I asked him about the best way to kill yourself with a weapon and about drug interactions while we were deployed. I promised him that I was writing a book and he was game, but still, I think he wondered. The medical stuff was a lot tougher to dig into. I had to pull from medical journals some of the medical stuff about Shane's leg injuries and I did a lot of research into people who thrived with amputations. A huge book for anyone wanting to see one man's perspective about life after amputation is Bryan Anderson's No Turning Back. Talk about inspiring.

4 If there is one thing that people misunderstand about the military or military life what is it?

Wow, there's so much we misunderstand about each other. There was an article written by a senior spouse military wife who was basically telling all the wives of today's war generation to suck it up, life isn't that bad. Well, she was a military spouse in the 80s and 90s when the worst thing she had to live through was a year of her spouse moving to Korea, not back to back rotations year after year. So it's hard to say where people misunderstand the most. I don't think the media portrays situations accurately when they say "the Army" did this or that. Ultimately, it's not "the Army" that did something. It's a specific chain of command. It's people. Does that make sense?

5 tell us 3 random things about yourself. Then tell us little about the next book in this series if that's possible.

Ack, three completely random things? Um, I have big feet. I'm kind of a cosmetics whore. And I love a good post apocalyptic anything (book, movie).

The next book in the series is a MUCH easier question to answer seeing how I just turned it in this week (whoot!). BACK TO YOU picks up where BECAUSE OF YOU leaves off. Laura Davila has been waiting for her husband to come home from war for years and finally, she's had enough. She sends her husband Trent divorce papers (a major taboo for military wives and sadly, an all too common occurrence) while he's deployed and he comes home to try and salvage their marriage. She has to learn to trust not only that he loves her but that he's capable of staying home long enough to learn to adjust to life outside of combat. It's a reunion story that really asks the question what is worth fighting for?