Thursday, September 30, 2021

First Light (+ Giveaway)


First Light
By Isabel Jolie
Publication date: September 28th, 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

He could be my savior…or my downfall…

I was living a lie.

No one knew who I really was. Letting someone in could’ve been devastating for my family.

For the most part, isolation wasn’t a hardship. It’s not like I was looking for love or any kind of serious relationship.

But then I met Logan.

I tried to keep my distance. He wouldn’t let me.

Logan is gentle, kind, and loving. Everything I never knew I needed in my life.

He’s also a cop—exactly the kind of man who’d never understand my truth.

So, while he shared his deepest, darkest secrets, I kept mine hidden.

Too bad I couldn’t keep my heart locked away, too.

Because now, I’m falling for a man who can never be mine. Not truly, anyway.

How can I ask him to be my future when I can’t even let him help me survive my present?

First Light, book three in the Haven Island series, is a lightly angsty, sometimes suspenseful, small town, military contemporary romance featuring a grumpy protective, over hero and the heroine who steals his heart. All of the books in the series are standalone contemporary romance novels and can be read in any order.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo / Google Play

Now here's an excerpt for your reading pleasure.

“Do you have any idea how crazy this dress has been driving me? The hem bounces when you walk, and shows off these long, lean thighs.”

I shifted my leg, opening to give him greater access. The rough pads of his fingers were warm against my bare skin, and goosebumps spread like wildfire across my arms.

“Are you cold?”

“No,” I breathed. I toyed with his soft hair on the back of his neck then tugged, guiding him back to my lips.

“Would you… Can we… Take this to the bedroom?”

“But what about—” A hungry, deep kiss silenced me. “The kitchen?” I asked, breathless, when he pulled back.

“Screw the kitchen.”

“Are you sure?” My brain fogged. His thigh pressed hard between my legs, lighting a desire. But out of the corner of my eye, the dirty stack of plates nagged.


“Yeah?” I brushed my fingers through the coarse strands of his trimmed beard, and he leaned into my touch.

“You’re looking at those dishes, aren’t you?”

My hips flexed against his legs, and I closed my eyes, reveling in the sensations firing off in my core.

“Now I’m not.”

His rough beard scratched the delicate skin along my throat as he flicked over my sensitized nipple. Through the cloth, his touch teased, and my body yearned for more.

His forehead pressed to mine. “Two minutes.”

He lifted me and placed me against the wall. Cold air encapsulated around my front in place of his warmth, and I stood, watching him, stunned as he moved at lightning speed. The chilly wall pressed against my back, and I alternated between crossing my arms and dropping my hands to my side.

Moments ago, I’d been ready to jump him, to beg him, to drop all inhibitions. But the desperate desire to ease a long-buried need cooled, and my brain kicked in. Shouldn’t we take this slower? If we do this, will I be using him? I’m not about to get into a serious relationship. And he’s so straightforward. He’s a good guy. He seemed to want more. If he wanted more, he deserved more.

Dishes clanged together. One singular swipe on the counters with a kitchen towel left the white gleaming. He closed the dishwasher with a dull snap.

“Clean.” He announced as he stalked toward me. I halfway expected, or maybe hoped, he’d finish what we started and take me up against the wall. Hard, fast, and possessive. But he’d calmed down, too. He lifted my hand and pressed my knuckles to his lips. “Care to sit down? We can talk.”

“Talk?” An uncontrollable smile spread.

“It’s… we’re both each other’s rebounds, right?”

“Yes.” I rationalized if you considered the shift from my life as it was, to the current state, as a divorcee, then I wasn’t lying… he would be a twisted sort of rebound.

“This whole dating thing. To tell you the truth, I had no desire. Until you. I think I’ve been numb. Desensitized.”

“You had a tough divorce?” The bow of his shoulders relayed an underlying pain as answer to my question.

“Is there any other kind?” Gentle, sensitive brown eyes searched mine.

“No, I suppose not.” Apprehension he would see through me, see my lies, took hold. I dropped my gaze.

“I know they say a rebound relationship shouldn’t…evolve. But to me, you don’t feel like a rebound fling.”

My fingers slid through his. A crushing weight rested on my chest. I followed him over to his sofa. He sat down first, and he tugged my hand, pulling me down beside him.

“You’re not a fling to me either. But…”

“Sshhh. That’s okay.” Laughter from outside filtered through the walls, along with the high-pitched jingle of a bike bell. His arm wrapped around my shoulders, and he tilted my chin up. “I don’t want to rush this. We can take it as slow as you want. But I like kissing you. A lot. Do you mind if I kiss you?”

My fingers skimmed his dark, thick hair at the nape of his neck, and he closed his eyes reverently. I pulled him down in answer. I tasted the faint hint of the cedar plank salmon, the chardonnay, and mint. His hands roamed over my dress, and I tugged on his shirt, pulling it out to grant access to the bare skin beneath. He groaned, and we shifted. Side by side on the sofa, his thigh pressed between my legs, and I ground against it. The tension and desire from earlier flamed back, but with a more controlled heat. He lifted my dress higher and higher, exposing me to just below my breasts. The soft touch of the rough pads of his fingers elicited an uncontrolled moan.

“Is this okay?” he asked in a low, barely audible, husky tone.

In answer, I brushed my fingers across his crotch and stroked the curve of his erection through his slacks. He groaned.

“How slow do you want to take this?”


Meet the Author: Isabel Jolie

Isabel Jolie, or Izzy to her friends, is an Amazon bestselling indie author with an unquenchable thirst for a good, sexy love story. Izzy’s heart pumps faster for stories with strong heroines, down-to-earth realism, and an unexpected twist.

When she’s not writing or reading, she can often be found with a glass of wine in hand relaxing with her husband, daughters, and good friends lakeside.

Izzy fills her Instagram feed with funnies, inspirational “brain candy”, and anything that meshes with her mood of the day. #mood.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Who can resist a story with a strong hero and a heroine who tries to take on the world by herself?

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Tuesday, September 28, 2021

The Lies That Shatter (+ Giveaway)


The Lies That Shatter
By A.V. Asher
(Truth & Lies, #2)
Publication date: September 28th, 2021
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

They say love never dies…

Devastated and lost, Former British Intelligence officer Alec McKinley knows he must move on. Still, he can’t forget the love of his life. The woman he tried so hard to protect and failed. When Alec arrives at the trial that will determine the fate of those responsible for destroying his world, he discovers how deep the lies run.

Mercedes Elliot has suffered through a lifetime’s worth of trauma, but finally, the end seems near. The trial that could free her from witness protection is around the corner, which means Alec will be waiting for her at last. She can’t wait to drop the charade she’s been living. But when Mercedes returns, she finds Alec isn’t alone and everything she thought she knew is a lie. There’s no one left to trust.

Deceptions run deep, and Alec grows more and more desperate to protect Mercedes, even as she is slipping through his fingers. Can he keep her alive long enough to prove he has never forgotten her? Or will evil succeed this time…

Goodreads / Amazon

Now here's an excerpt for your reading pleasure.

The next morning, Mercedes woke to the smell of freshly brewed coffee and knew things were different. Noah didn’t drink coffee, so she was the one who made it in the morning.

The divine scent and the unfamiliar bedroom reminded her she wasn’t with Noah anymore.


She was with Alec. How in the hell was she going to get through this? She could stay in her room all day. If she did, she wouldn’t have to speak to him.

But the coffee was too big a draw. 

It was quiet in the house as she stepped from her room. The view from the living room in daylight was breathtaking. The Pacific stretched out beyond the tall pine trees. A soft breeze filtered through the air.

Alec wasn’t in the kitchen, so she poured herself a cup and added her cream. Outside, a splash of water caught her attention, and she carried her coffee out onto the deck. Her gaze followed the gentle swish of water and instantly her core clenched.

Holy hell.

Alec was swimming.

How could someone look so damn good? He moved gracefully, the strength of his arms gliding him through the water.

Sipping her coffee, she walked down to the pool. She sat on the edge, her feet cooled by the water.

Alec’s eyes caught hers and he swam to her. When he rose up, he rubbed his hand through his thick hair. Water cascaded down his chest, following along his muscles. Even with the bruises and cuts, he was stunning.

He grasped the edge of the pool on either side of her, drops rolling from his body onto her knees.

“You should come in, it’s lovely.”

That would be a mistake. “I would, but I don’t have a suit.”

Alec’s lips turned up mischievously. “You don’t need one, darling. It’s nothing I’ve not seen before.”

Jesus, he needed to stop looking at her like that.

Mercedes tilted her head, holding in a smile. “Are you flirting with me, Alec?”

“Shamelessly,” he said with a grin.

A flutter of butterflies took hold in her stomach, shooting right down into her core. She should tell him to stop. This was hard enough without having to combat his charm.

But damn if she didn’t love this side of him. Playful, sweet, and even a little goofy. He could make her forget how hard everything had collapsed around them.

Alec swam to the stairs and pulled himself out. Mercedes shivered and had to look at the water while he toweled himself off.

“I have a little work to do. Then I was thinking we might go into town and pick up a few things. Do you feel up to that?”

Mercedes nodded. “I’ll take a little rest in the shade while you work. It’s so nice out.”

“Aye, it is.” Rivulets of water coursed down his neck and onto his perfect collarbone. The temptation to lick it off him was way too damn strong. Mercedes gulped her coffee, praying her raging libido would knock it off.

“. . . try to sleep some more,” Alec was saying. “I’ll be a couple of hours.”

“Oh, mm-hmm.” A flush was creeping up her cheeks. She had no idea what he was talking about. Hopefully, he hadn’t asked her to do anything important.

Jesus, Sadie. Get it together.

Alec flashed her a brilliant smile before he headed back into the house. Mercedes watched him walk away, the back side looking just as good as the front.

She sighed and flopped onto one of the shaded lounge chairs. Alec was dangerous in more ways than one. If she was going to get through this, she was going to have to do a better job of knocking down her feelings for this man.


Meet the Author: A.V. Asher

American writer AV Asher (Avie) was one of those kids always who got in trouble for reading in class. She has been creating stories since childhood, but only recently began writing them down.

The Truth Keeps Silent is Avie's debut novel. The second book in the duet, The Lies That Shatter, is expected to be released in the Autumn of 2021.

Avie lives in Northern Nevada with her husband and three children.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Doesn't this sound like an intriguing story that will have you guessing from beginning to end what happens next?

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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

A Calculated Whisk (+ Giveaway)

It's a pleasure to be a part of author Victoria Hamilton's Great Escape Virtual Book Tour for her latest release, A CALCULATED WHISK.

A Calculated Whisk

By Victoria Hamilton
Cozy Mystery
10th in Series: A Vintage Kitchen Mystery
Publisher: ‎ Beyond the Page (September 21, 2021)
Paperback 212 Pages
ISBN-10: ‎ 1954717504
ISBN-13: ‎ 978-1954717503
Digital ASIN: ‎ B09CV579FJ

In the new Vintage Kitchen Mystery from the author of Cast Iron Alibi, Jaymie Leighton is confronted with two murders and the threat of danger far too close to home . . .

When a woman living under a cloud of suspicion for her husband’s death comes to vintage kitchen collector Jaymie Leighton with a mysterious request, she’s not sure whether, or how much, to get involved. The police believe they have new evidence of foul play in what was initially ruled an accidental death, and the woman’s terrified they’ll try to pin the crime on her. Before Jaymie can decide whether to help her, though, the woman’s found murdered in the woods near Jaymie’s cabin.

Still unsure whether the woman was truly innocent in her husband’s death, Jaymie decides to get to the bottom of both murders. But as she digs deeper into the couple’s past and discovers a tangled array of long-buried wounds and family secrets, Jaymie begins to sense that danger is still lurking in the woods near her home. With a killer on the loose and her family in danger, Jaymie must uncover the culprit before she loses all she holds dear, including her own life . . .

Includes a vintage recipe!

A Calculated Whisk
is available at Amazon - B&N  - Kobo.

Meet the Author: Victoria Hamilton

Victoria Hamilton is the bestselling author of several mystery series including the national bestselling Vintage Kitchen Mysteries and Merry Muffin Mysteries. She does, indeed, collect vintage kitchenware and bake muffins. She also writes the Lady Anne Addison Historical Mysteries. She drinks tea and coffee on writing days, and wine other times. She crochets (a little), paints (a little) and reads (a lot). A solitary being, she can be coaxed out of her writing cave for brownies and cat videos.

She started her writing life as Donna Lea Simpson, bestselling author of Regency Romances, paranormal historicals and historical mysteries, and still has a soft spot for the Regency period.

You can find her online at:

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Thanks everyone for stopping by today. Would you be tempted to help someone solve a murder mystery if they came to you for help?

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September 17 – This Is My Truth Now - REVIEW

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September 18 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book - SPOTLIGHT

September 19 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW

September 19 – I Read What You Write – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

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September 20 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

September 20 – Celticlady's Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

September 21 – Cozy Up With Kathy - REVIEW

September 21 – Christy's Cozy Corners – GUEST POST

September 22 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

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September 23 – Laura's Interests – REVIEW

September 23 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

September 24 – Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic – SPOTLIGHT

September 24 – Read Your Writes Book Reviews – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

September 24 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT

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