Saturday, December 31, 2016

Clink 2017


I clink you ;-D

mmm, bubble-icious


TIME to put the book down and put your hands up;-)



H A P P Y
N E W
Y E A R
Y'ALL !!!

You Better Not Cry: Stories for Christmas by Augusten Burroughs

You Better Not Cry:
Stories for Christmas
by Augusten Burroughs
narrated by author

Find out more about this book and author:
Amazon
Goodreads
Website
Flickr
Facebook
Pinterest
Twitter @augusten

Published: 2009
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Genre: Humor, Holiday, Memoir
Hardback: 224 pages
Rating: 5

First sentence(s):
It's not that I was an outright nitwit of a child.

You’ve eaten too much candy at Christmas…but have you ever eaten the face off a six-footstuffed Santa? You’ve seen gingerbread houses…but have you ever made your own gingerbread tenement? You’ve woken up with a hangover…but have you ever woken up next to Kris Kringle himself? Augusten Burroughs has, and in this caustically funny, nostalgic, poignant, and moving collection he recounts Christmases past and present—as only he could. With gimleteyed wit and illuminated prose, Augusten shows how the holidays bring out the worst in us and sometimes, just sometimes, the very, very best.

PeekAbook:



My two-bits:

Squeezing in this last review before the end of the year ;-)

Along with amusing and hilarious childhood memory tales, this book includes some serious ones. It is an entertaining one for the holidays.

The author's narration was well done and makes me want to check out his other works.

~*~

* part of Audiobook Challenge

Stacking the Shelves - 12.31.16

Stacking the Shelves
hosted by Tynga's Reviews (details)

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

~*~

FREEBIE: for kindle

Prejudice Meets Pride
by Rachael Anderson
Amazon | Goodreads
GET a free kindle version: ends today


For Review:

Different Class
by Joanne Harris
-Mystery, Thriller
courtesy of publisher -Thanks!
Amazon | Goodreads

River Road
by Carol Goodman
-Mystery, Thriller
courtesy of publisher -Thanks!
Amazon | Goodreads


UNBOXING:

From Owlcrate package (details & signup):
OwlCrate is a subscription service that sends you magical monthly boxes tailored to a chosen theme. Each OwlCrate will contain one new Young Adult novel, as well as 3-5 other bookish treats to help you get your nerd on. @owlcrate


DECEMBER Box includes:
theme: Epic
- Funko mini figurine: Hedwig
- Enamel pin: Lord of the Rings created by Jane Mount (Ideal Bookshelf)
- Game of Thrones coasters from Dark Horse Comics
- Greeting card: The Chronicles of Narnia from Susanne Draws
- Sticker: A Darker Shade of Magic designed by Miss Phi
- January teaser card: Classic Remix

AND this book...

Of Fire and Stars
by Audrey Coulthurst
-Fantasy, LGBTQ, YA
Amazon | Goodreads

Betrothed since childhood to the prince of Mynaria, Princess Dennaleia has always known what her future holds. Her marriage will seal the alliance between Mynaria and her homeland, protecting her people from other hostile kingdoms. But Denna has a secret. She possesses an Affinity for fire—a dangerous gift for the future queen of a land where magic is forbidden.

Now Denna has to learn the ways of her new kingdom while trying to hide her growing magic. To make matters worse, she must learn to ride Mynaria’s formidable warhorses before her coronation—and her teacher is the person who intimidates her most, the prickly and unconventional Princess Amaranthine, sister of her betrothed.

When a shocking assassination leaves the kingdom reeling, Mare and Denna reluctantly join forces to search for the culprit. As the two work together, they discover there is more to one another than they thought—and soon their friendship is threatening to blossom into something more.

But with dangerous conflict brewing that makes the alliance more important than ever, acting on their feelings could be deadly. Forced to choose between their duty and their hearts, Mare and Denna must find a way to save their kingdoms—and each other.


Other book-related: signed up to do this...

First Book Of The Year 2017
hosted by Book Journey (details)

~*~

* comment and TELL me what you have acquired for your shelves recently


Thursday, December 29, 2016

Winners for December pt2


Here are the winners for giveaways that
ended December 28, 2016
during the Pemberley...a party event (schedule)

Thanks to all contestants!

~*~


Alexa Adams trio
Winner: MAD


Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Sword Princess
by Suzette Hollingsworth
Amazon | Goodreads | my review | giveaway
Winner: Linda Romer


Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict
by Laurie Viera Rigler
Amazon | Goodreads | my review
Winner (easter egg) paperback version: Anji


FREEBIE:

Prejudice Meets Pride
by Rachael Anderson
Amazon | Goodreads
GET a free kindle version until Dec 30

After years of pinching pennies and struggling to get through art school, Emma Makie’s hard work finally pays off with the offer of a dream job. But when tragedy strikes, she has no choice but to make a cross-country move to Colorado Springs to take temporary custody of her two nieces. She has no money, no job prospects, and no idea how to be a mother to two little girls, but she isn’t about to let that stop her. Nor is she about to accept the help of Kevin Grantham, her handsome neighbor, who seems to think she’s incapable of doing anything on her own.

Prejudice Meets Pride is the story of a guy who thinks he has it all figured out and a girl who isn't afraid to show him that he doesn't. It’s about learning what it means to trust, figuring out how to give and to take, and realizing that not everyone gets to pick the person they fall in love with. Sometimes, love picks them.



~*~

* heads-up on freebie from: Feed Your Reader

* easter egg giveaways: are surprise giveaways embedded in posts that sometimes have an egg image at the bottom or simply hints at a giveaway for comments participation throughout the event or just because i'm feeling generous

* to see the original giveaway offer, click on the signup link

* I will email winners for mailing addresses within two weeks.
Winners, feel free to contact me with your info if you don't get my email
or if you are just too darn excited and want to let me know -- like NOW ;-D

* contest policy

* if not this time, maybe next time

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday - 12.28.16

Waiting on Wednesday
sponsored by Jill at Breaking the Spine (details)

~*~

I'm waiting for...

Into the Water
by Paula Hawkins
-Thriller
Release date: May 2, 2017
Amazon | Goodreads

The book is about “the slipperiness of the truth, and a family drowning in secrets”, her publisher said.

Set in a small riverside town in the UK, the novel will “unfurl a gripping, twisting, layered story”. While little has been given away in terms of plot, it will feature two sisters and “ghostly echoes of the past”.


=====> As I liked, Girl on the Train, I am curious to see how this one is.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Happy Release: Small Admissions by Amy Poeppel

Small Admissions: A Novel
by Amy Poeppel
-chicklit
Just released: December 27, 2016
Amazon | Goodreads

In SMALL ADMISSIONS, despite Kate Pearson’s innate ambition and Summa Cum Laude smarts, she has turned into a major slacker. After being unceremoniously dumped by her handsome, French “almost fiancé,” she abandons her grad school plans and instead spends her days lolling on the couch, watching reruns of Sex and the City, and leaving her apartment only when a dog-walking gig demands it. Her friends don’t know what to do other than pass tissues and hope for a comeback, while her practical sister, Angela, pushes every remedy she can think of, from trapeze class to therapy to job interviews.

Miraculously, and for reasons no one (least of all Kate) understands, she manages to land a job in the admissions department at the prestigious Hudson Day School. In her new position, Kate learns there’s no time for self-pity or nonsense during the height of the admissions season, or what her colleagues refer to as “the dark time.” As the process revs up, Kate meets smart kids who are unlikable, likeable kids who aren’t very smart, and Park Avenue parents who refuse to take no for an answer.

Meanwhile, Kate’s sister and her closest friends find themselves keeping secrets, hiding boyfriends, dropping bombshells, and fighting each other on how to keep Kate on her feet. On top of it all, her cranky, oddly charming, and irritatingly handsome downstairs neighbor is more than he seems. Through every dishy, page-turning twist, it seems that one person’s happiness leads to another’s misfortune, and suddenly everyone, including Kate, is looking for a way to turn rejection on its head, using any means necessary—including the truly unexpected.


FYI:
Amy began writing SMALL ADMISSIONS as a series of comedic dialogues after she and her husband went through the nerve-wrecking experience of interviewing at private schools for their sons. “I was convinced we were spectacularly bad at it,” she explains, “and I couldn’t stop thinking about how strangely we seemed to behave as soon as we sat down in front of an admissions officer. Sometimes I thought my husband bragged too much about our kids, other times I thought he was overly critical of them, and throughout the interviews, I felt like I was running interference, and I hated the impression we were making.” Soon after, she began working as the Assistant Director of Admissions at a prestigious day school in Manhattan. From the other side of the desk, as she interviewed parents, interacted with student applicants and participated in the banter of the admissions staff, she developed an appreciation for the nuanced drama and the pervasive humor of admissions, compounded by her previous experiences as a nervous parent facing an admissions officer. With these dual perspectives in mind, Poeppel set out to explore the absurd world of admissions with warmth, humor and above all, a deep appreciation for devoted, anxious parents and their dedicated admissions department counterparts, all through the eyes of a clever, yet flailing young woman trying her best to make sense of the acceptance and rejections in her own life.

About the author:
Amy Poeppel is a graduate of Wellesley College. She lives with her husband and three sons in New York City, where she worked in the admissions department of a prestigious independent school. She workshopped a theatrical version of SMALL ADMISSIONS at the Actors Studio Playwrights/Directors Unit. She later expanded it into this novel.


Find out more about this book and author:
Amazon
Goodreads
Website
Blog
Facebook
Instagram
Twitter @amypoeppel

~*~

* heads-up courtesy of BookSparks


Monday, December 26, 2016

Fall With Me by Jayne Frost

Fall With Me
by Jayne Frost

Find out more about this book and author:
Amazon
Goodreads
BookExcerpt
Website
Facebook
Pinterest
Tumblr
Twitter @jaynefrostbooks

Just released: December 15, 2016
Publisher: Sixth Street Press
Genre: New Adult, Romance
ebook
Rating: 4

Sixth Street Bands series:
Gone for You
Fall With Me

First sentence(s):
I pulled to a stop of Hut's burgers and glanced at Logan. he gave me a wide smile, his face half-hidden under the black Batman mask we'd picked up at Party City.

As the bassist for the band Caged, the last three years have been one, long non-stop party. Sure, I’ve had some regrets. Everyone does. But getting trapped in a relationship isn’t one of them. I know good and well what happens when the attraction fades. I’ve seen it first hand. Love is a zero sum game, so why play? As long as I'm upfront about my feelings, no one gets hurt. Besides, I'm never in one place long enough to worry about tomorrow. That is, until the band decided to take an extended hiatus in our hometown. That’s when I met Melody Sullivan. She’s the full-package. Whip smart and beautiful, with enough determination to take on anything life has in store. And the best part? Melody shares my philosophy on the fleeting nature of attraction. She doesn’t buy into the whole “happily ever after” crap anymore than I do. We’re perfect for each other. For now. And now is all I want. With the expectations off the table, I can let my guard down and enjoy her company until the spark dies. And we both know it will. In a week, or a month. But until then, we’ll just keep having fun. The good kind, with lots of sex and no strings attached. And when it’s time to move on, we will. No drawn out goodbyes and no remorse. That’s the plan, at least.

My two-bits:

This is a good one to read during the holiday season as some scenes are set then.

The story is told from the male perspective which adds to the rock and roll vibe. He is not only musically talented, but can be quite brainy.

Along with hot and steamy scenes, this story develops in a gentle way. With both characters falling in love despite inner struggles.

Being part of a series, there is some development with the surrounding characters as well. Always fun to catch up with them.

~*~

* review copy courtesy of author

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Stacking the Shelves - 12.24.16

Stacking the Shelves
hosted by Tynga's Reviews (details)

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

~*~

UNBOXING:

From LitCube package (details & signup):
Lit-Cube is a monthly subscription box for readers. We strive to pair hand-picked reads with high quality literary-themed products to bring you a magical reading experience each and every month. We mail out a variety of books & genres. We are *not* a YA only box subscription and we choose new releases, older releases, and a variety of book formats monthly.

Note: it is too late to sign up for this particular box, but if there are leftover it might be available in their shop later. Also, signup for their newsletter for a heads-up on the future themed boxes. The January box will be dragon related.


DECEMBER Box includes:
theme: Sherlocked
- Sherlock Holmes Socks - exclusive (designed for LitCube)
- Sherlock themed Tea by First Edition Tea Co.
- 221B Baker Street keychain
- 2016 LitCube Holiday ornament
- signed bookplate from Heather W. Petty
- Lock and Mori stickers

AND these books...

Lock & Mori (book 1)
by Heather W. Petty
-Mystery, Sherlock, YA
Amazon | Goodreads

In modern-day London, two brilliant high school students—one Sherlock Holmes and a Miss James “Mori” Moriarty—meet. A murder will bring them together. The truth very well might drive them apart.

Before they were mortal enemies, they were much more…

FACT: Someone has been murdered in London’s Regent’s Park. The police have no leads.

FACT: Miss James “Mori” Moriarty and Sherlock “Lock” Holmes should be hitting the books on a school night. Instead, they are out crashing a crime scene.

FACT: Lock has challenged Mori to solve the case before he does. Challenge accepted.

FACT: Despite agreeing to Lock’s one rule—they must share every clue with each other—Mori is keeping secrets.

OBSERVATION: Sometimes you can’t trust the people closest to you with matters of the heart. And after this case, Mori may never trust Lock again.



Lock & Mori
Mind Games (book 2)
by Heather W. Petty
-Mystery, Sherlock, YA
Just released: December 6, 2016
Amazon | Goodreads


OTHER things on my shelf: kinda book-related

Happy Jolabokaflod!
Yule Book Flood
Iceland's book tradition
(read more about it)

AND watched: in theatre

Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley
at Marin Theatre Company

=====> Fantastic way to get a Jane Austen fix!


Something holiday-ish: check this out for a smile



~*~

* comment and TELL me what you have acquired for your shelves recently

* check out the sidebar for my current giveaways offers

TRANSFORMED my TBR pile into a book tree topped with a christmas angel book ;-)


Friday, December 23, 2016

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares
by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan
narrated by: Ryan Gesell, Tara Sands

Find out more about this book and author:
Amazon
Goodreads
BookExcerpt
Website: Rachel
Website: David

Published: 2010
Publisher: Knopf
Genre: YA
Hardback: 272 pages
Rating: 4

series:
Dash & Lily's Book of Dares
The Twelve Days of Dash & Lily

First sentence(s):
Imagine this:
You're in your favorite bookstore, scanning the shelves. You get to the section where a favorite author's books reside, and there, nestled in comfortably between the incredibly familiar spines, sits a red notebook.

“I’ve left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”

16-year-old Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on her favorite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. Dash, in a bad mood during the holidays, happens to be the first guy to pick up the notebook and rise to its challenges.

What follows is a whirlwind romance as Dash and Lily trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations all across New York City. But can their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions, or will their scavenger hunt end in a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?


My two-bits:

What a fun scavenger hunt-like story. This story involves lovely and lively YA banter about books and the feelings that occur during the holiday season. The interesting twist with this story is that the relationship starts with journal/letter writing which will appeal to those who like the epistolary form.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Holiday Movies


GETTING good feels for the season...

I decided to start a new tradition of watching at least two holiday romance movies in December.

Do you include holiday movies in your things to do in November/December?


Holiday Engagement (2011)
Director: Jim Fall
Writers: Barbara Kymlicka, Charlotte Clark-Gamache
Teleplay: Barbara Kymlicka, Jim Fall
Starring: Bonnie Somerville, Jordan Bridges, Shelley Long
Location: Los Angeles, California
-Comedy, Romance, Holiday | imdb | my rating: 3

Afraid to admit she was just dumped, a woman hires an actor to play her lawyer-boyfriend during a 4-day Thanksgiving weekend at her parents' house.

=====> Fun and funny to watch the crazy doings of keeping up a charade.


The Spirit of Christmas (2015)
Director: David Jackson
Writers: Tracy Andreen
Starring: Thomas Beaudoin, Kati Salowsky
Location: Wrentham, Massachusetts
-Drama, Mystery, Romance, Holiday, Ghosts | imdb | my rating: 4

Kate, a workaholic lawyer, has 12 days to get a bed and breakfast appraised, but the owner is uncooperative because he claims a spirit lives there and would not approve. As Kate's promotion may rest on accomplishing this task, she checks in and haggles with a man who suspiciously seems awfully solid for a ghost.

=====> Interesting to watch one of these with a bit of paranormal activity.


Christmas in the City (2014)
Director: Marita Grabiak
Writer: Barbara Kymlicka
Starring: Ashley Williams, Ashanti, Jon Prescott
Location: San Fernando Valley, California
-Drama, Family, Romance, Holiday | imdb | my rating: 4

With the threat of having to close her father's candy store, Wendy and her six-year-old daughter Grace travel to the big city in hopes of making extra holiday cash to save the store. When she's offered a job in the toy department of Wolmans, the city's biggest department store, Wendy can't wait! Her excitement doesn't last long when the store's manager, Teanna, destroys the Christmas spirit throughout the store and replaces Santa with a hunky male underwear model surrounded by elfin "babes." What Teanna is unaware of is that she has in fact sacked the real Santa. Unaware of his real "Santa" status, Wendy reaches out to the old man but it seems even he has given up hope. With her daughter losing faith in the holiday, Wendy realizes she must bring the true meaning of Christmas back to Wolmans before it is too late.

=====> Clash of the old and new. Personally, I love keeping some of the old traditional customs when it comes to decor. This is set in a department store with hunky christmas models replacing elves.


12 Dates of Christmas (2011)
Director: James Hayman
Writers: Aaron Mendelsohn, Janet Brownell, Blake Harris
Starring: Amy Smart, Mark-Paul Gosselaar
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
-Drama, Romance, Holiday | imdb | my rating: 4

A story that follows Kate, a young woman who after a horrible blind date on Christmas Eve, wakes up to find she is re-living that same day and date all over again.

=====> The groundhog day effect, but during christmas time. So cute. So amusing. This was a re-watch for me and I noticed lots of fun trivia tidbits that I missed first time around.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday - 12.21.16

Waiting on Wednesday
sponsored by Jill at Breaking the Spine (details)

~*~

I'm waiting for...

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
by Taylor Jenkins Reid
-Chicklit
Release date: June 6, 2017
Amazon | Goodreads

Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one in the journalism community is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now?

Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband, David, has left her, and her career has stagnated. Regardless of why Evelyn has chosen her to write her biography, Monique is determined to use this opportunity to jumpstart her career.

Summoned to Evelyn’s Upper East Side apartment, Monique listens as Evelyn unfurls her story: from making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the late 80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way. As Evelyn’s life unfolds—revealing a ruthless ambition, an unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love—Monique begins to feel a very a real connection to the actress. But as Evelyn’s story catches up with the present, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways.

Written with Reid’s signature talent for “creating complex, likable characters” (Real Simple), this is a fascinating journey through the splendor of Old Hollywood into the harsh realities of the present day as two women struggle with what it means—and what it takes—to face the truth.


=====> The words "scandalous" and "Old Hollywood" along with the gorgeous cover is what draws me to this one.

Excerpt:

New York Tribune
By Priya Amrit
March 2, 2017

Film legend and ’60s It Girl Evelyn Hugo has just announced that she will auction off 12 of her most memorable gowns through Christie’s to raise money for breast cancer research.

At the age of 79, Hugo has long been an icon of glamour and elegance. She is known for a personal style both sensual and restrained, and many of Hugo’s most famous looks are considered touchstones of the fashion and Hollywood archives.

Those looking to own a piece of Hugo history will be intrigued not only by the gowns themselves but also by the context in which they were worn. Included in the sale will be the emerald green Miranda La Conda that Hugo wore to the 1959 Academy Awards, the violet soufflé and organdy scoop-neck she donned at the premiere of Anna Karenina in 1962, and the navy blue silk Michael Maddax that she was wearing in 1982 when she won her Oscar for All for Us.

READ the rest of the excerpt (here)

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Winners for December pt1


Here are the winners for giveaways that
ended December 19, 2016
during the December Zombies event (schedule)

Thanks to all contestants!

~*~

Once Upon a Zombie:
Book One: The Color of Fear by Billy Phillips
Amazon | Goodreads | my review | giveaway
Winner: M.A.D.


Undead
by Kirsty McKay
Amazon | Goodreads | my review | giveaway
Winner: Laura Thomas


~*~

* I will email winners for mailing addresses within two weeks.
Winners, feel free to contact me with your info if you don't get my email
or if you are just too darn excited and want to let me know -- like NOW ;-D

* contest policy

* if not this time, maybe next time

--> check out the current giveaways and upcoming events on my sidebar

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Happy Release: Fall With Me by Jayne Frost

Releasing December 15th, "FALL WITH ME" brings readers more of the sultry hot rockers that you love from Jayne Frost's Sixth Street Bands Series, along with a healthy dose of steamy romance with some laughs on the side. Also, don’t forget to check out the cover art by none other than Judi Perkins at Concierge Literary Designs.


As the bassist for the band Caged, the last three years have been one, long non-stop party. Sure, I’ve had some regrets. Everyone does. But getting trapped in a relationship isn’t one of them. I know good and well what happens when the attraction fades. I’ve seen it first hand. Love is a zero sum game, so why play? As long as I'm upfront about my feelings, no one gets hurt. Besides, I'm never in one place long enough to worry about tomorrow.
That is, until the band decided to take an extended hiatus in our hometown. That’s when I met Melody Sullivan. She’s the full-package. Whip smart and beautiful, with enough determination to take on anything life has in store. And the best part? Melody shares my philosophy on the fleeting nature of attraction. She doesn’t buy into the whole “happily ever after” crap anymore than I do. We’re perfect for each other. For now. And now is all I want.
With the expectations off the table, I can let my guard down and enjoy her company until the spark dies. And we both know it will. In a week, or a month. But until then, we’ll just keep having fun. The good kind, with lots of sex and no strings attached. And when it’s time to move on, we will. No drawn out goodbyes and no remorse.
That’s the plan, at least.






Pinning Mel to the cinder block wall in her tiny living room, I kissed her deeply, my fingers creeping under the hem of her blouse. She sighed, the back of her head bumping against the concrete as I palmed her breast.
“Fuck…sorry.” My hand disappeared into her blond locks, searching for a lump. “Are you all right?”
The girl had me so revved up I was ready to take her right here, inches from her front door.
Resting her palm against my chest, she laughed softly. “No permanent damage. I’ve got a hard head.”
Mel was hardheaded, all right. And smart. Not to mention sexy as hell.
Slipping out of my arms, she headed for the kitchen before I could devour her mouth again. I bit my lip when she ducked her head into the fridge, wiggling her ass as she poked around.
“Would you like something to drink? I’ve got water and…” She walked back with two bottles of Dasani. “Water.”
“Water’s fine.”
Twisting the cap off the bottle, I looked around the tiny apartment. Mel’s place was as bare bones as it got. Campus housing with concrete walls and worn carpet. Her entire kitchen would fit in the guest bathroom at my house.
Sinking onto the arm of the recliner, Mel snagged her lip between her teeth. “I’ve never had a one-nighter,” she admitted, like it was a bad thing. “So you’re going to have to tell me how this goes.”
Shifting my gaze to the large calendar on the wall in her dining room, I glanced over the neat stack of books on the table below. The girl was organized—OCD style—which was refreshing. But the fact that she was already planning for my imminent departure unnerved me.
Closing the gap between us, I twirled a lock of her hair around my finger. “It goes the way it goes, angel. The only thing set in stone is your breakfast. Eggs, right?”
She looked up, the sparkle in her eyes faint at best. “I’m not expecting you to be here in the morning, Christian. We both know what this is. I’ve heard all the rumors. I’m not naïve, you know?”
I pulled away out of sheer reflex. All night long we were just Christian and Mel. My celebrity was barely mentioned. Hell, she didn’t even pump me for information about the band.
After a moment, I eased onto the chair.
“Really?” I slid her onto my lap. “What have you heard about me? I’m dying to know.”
Staring at the bottle in her hand, her fingernail skated over the label. “The usual. Oversexed rocker. Never in one place more than a night.”
Tucking a finger under her chin, I tilted her face until our gazes met.
“I’ve been in Austin for months, so you shouldn’t believe everything you hear.”
Her expression indicated she saw through my halfhearted attempt to address the rumors. I may have been in the same city, but that didn’t mean I was in the same bed. A Google search would turn up dozens of pictures to prove the point.
Mel slipped her arms around my neck. “I’m just letting you know that I get it. Guys like you don’t date—they fuck.” She fought to keep her smile. “And breakfast isn’t usually part of the deal.”
I tightened my grip on her waist, my thumb skimming the smooth skin above the waistband of her jeans. Conversations like this weren’t usually unnecessary. The chicks I hung out with knew the score. Hell, they were fine with it. No truths exchanged beyond the basics: hotel or tour bus, and where should the cab drop you off when we’re finished.
But Mel wasn’t like that. She spent her time in libraries, not waiting behind rope lines hoping to get my attention.
Taking her hand, I blew out a breath. “I’ve been on the road for four years. It’s a little hard to plan breakfast when you don’t know what city you’ll be come morning. But I can’t blame it all on my lifestyle. From a strictly biological standpoint, you know, attraction fades as soon as the hormone rush is over. Pheromones and all that.” Chancing a peek at her face, I found her nodding in agreement, her green eyes glued to mine. I smiled, tracing a finger over the curve of her jaw. “I’m not saying I’m opposed to a repeat performance. I just don’t believe in making promises I can’t keep.”
Realization slammed me in the chest as she mulled over my declaration. Despite the passionate kiss at the door, Mel wasn’t a sure thing. She could ask me to leave. Hell, she might.
I held my breath as she shoved to her feet.
Propping a hand on her hip, she studied me for a long moment. “But you will be making me breakfast…is that what I’m hearing?”
Not quite a question, but a statement of fact. And one I’d gladly agree to if it meant a night in her bed.
“You can bet on it, angel.”
I stood with the intention of capturing her mouth.
Instead, Mel entwined our fingers and said, “Cool. I think I’ll take you to bed now.”


Book 1
As the guitarist for the rock band Caged, I know the rules: no relationships. No complications. Leave ‘em willing when you go, but always go. Besides, it’s not like I’m ever in one place for more than a few days at a time. As the next hottest thing out of Austin, the band and me are riding the wave, and the music is all that matters.
Until her…
Lily Tennison has “complication” written across her beautiful face. But I can’t get involved. The timing’s all wrong. But she’s under my skin, and I can’t resist her troubled eyes and sweet smile. And I do have a little time to kill. Not much, just a few days in Dallas.
So I’ll scratch the itch and move on, like I always do.
Simple, right?


So…Who is Jayne?
As a writer you would think that would be a simple question…but it’s not. I spend so much time living in my characters heads, listening to their voices, that sometimes I forget about my own.
I guess I should start with the basics: the backstory. I was born and raised in California. At this point, I’m usually asked what it was like to grow up near the beach, but sadly, I don’t know. I grew up in the “other” part of California. Perfect for an aspiring writer, if you ask me. You learn a lot about keeping yourself busy when the nearest house is a mile away…and it belongs to your grandparents.
I spent all my time with my nose in a book, living vicariously through the characters, until I wrote a book of my own. I was ten at the time. It was a scintillating piece that cast the family pet as the protagonist.
By the time I went to high school, I moved on to romance. Why? Because I met my very own prince charming. I wrote love poems in my journal about the green-eyed boy who stole my heart. He promised, the way all storybook heroes do, to sweep me away and take me on a grand adventure. And he did.
We picked up and moved to the Lone Star State and began the story of us. The best stories begin without a road map or a compass. Veering off course makes the journey so much more interesting.
True to form, just when I thought my life was set, we started the next adventure. I traded in my cowboy boots and followed my green-eyed boy to Las Vegas. My home will always be in Texas, but my heart is anywhere that he is. Our beautiful daughter made the journey with us. Our son stayed in Texas, to write his own story.
Somehow, in the midst of the chaos that is our life, I find time to write. Writing is what I love. I might stray from romance every now and then if that is what moves me…but I always come back. Some of the stories don’t seem romantic at all. They are gritty stories about flawed characters that find each other and hold on tight. Those are the stories that speak to me. Because that’s life. I believe that every story should have a happy ending—even the difficult ones.


 
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