Friday, August 18, 2017


Title: A Change of View
Series: The Northern Lights Collection
Author: Freya Barker
Genre: Romantic Suspense Standalone
Release Date: August 16, 2017 Cover Designer: Rebel Edit & Design

What if one morning you look in the mirror and no longer recognize the person looking back?
When Leelo can no longer identify herself by the roles that once defined her, it's both terrifying and liberating. Oh, she feels the loss, the grief, and then the anger, but when she inherits property up north, she jumps at the promise of freedom and independence. 
Yet not everyone in her new community is what they seem, starting with the surly mountain man down the road.
As owner of the local fishing lodge, Roar is content with his everyday life. And the older he gets, the less he appreciates change. So when a blue-haired, tattooed ‘city girl’ moves into the old motel, shaking up his daily routine, he’s none too pleased.
Still, something about the woman’s easy smile and almost reckless grit has him step up as her keeper.

I slap my thigh where a mosquito just bit me. I wipe at another one that lands on my arm, and pretty soon the buzzing is loud around my head, and I’m frantically waving my hand around my face. A blood-sucking army is out tonight, and I scramble to my feet, snatch up the now empty bottle, and hustle toward the sanctuary of my house. My heart lodges in my throat when I see a figure detach itself from the shadows of the porch. “Was wondering how long it would fucking take before you came running.” I bend over, gasping to get air in my lungs, when I hear the voice. “I swear, Riordan Doyle…one day you’ll be the death of me.” “Not what I had in mind,” he chuckles easily, as he grabs my arm, drags me inside, and out of the way of the charging mosquitoes. “What are you doing here?” I ask, as he takes the bottle from my hand, sets it on the counter, and pulls me into my living room. There he drops down on the threadbare couch and tugs me down beside him. “I thought you went home?” “I did,” he confirms, throwing his arm over my shoulder and tugging me to his chest. “And I was just putting my feet up on the coffee table when I realized I didn’t want to be there.” “No?” “No,” he repeats. “Couldn’t relax. Started thinking about this…thing…between us. And you know what? Waiting for the right time is for the fucking birds.” “It is?” “It absolutely fucking is,” he says with conviction, curving his free hand along my jaw and turning my face toward him. His hazel eyes are almost black in the scarce light of my living room, his heavy-lidded gaze roaming my features before settling on my lips. “I’m thinking right now sounds like the right time.” I can feel the deep rumble of his voice down to my toes, and my own drops a few octaves lower as well. “You do?” I mutter breathlessly as his head bends down. It’s clear from my distinctly unimaginative responses that my brain cells have signed off for the day. I’m starting to sound like a goddamn parrot, but Roar doesn’t give me time to linger on that thought. His mouth is already on mine and his tongue is demanding entry. One moment I’m tucked beside him on the couch, and the next I’m on my back, Roar’s heavy frame covering me, his lips still firmly fused to mine. Good God the man can kiss.



I really enjoy a nice adult romance and Freya Barker definitely provides that. Leelo is a 46-year-old mother of two who has lost her way after her ex-husbands betrayal. She spent too many years playing the good wife while he tore her down. Leelo decides to move up north and take over her late Uncle’s old hotel. She is looking for a fresh start and she feels like she needs to give her kids some breathing room after she wasn’t her best around them after her divorce.

Leelo soon meets surly mountain man Roar when he finds her hanging off of her roof in a storm. Roar can’t believe she is risking her life for that roof. He grumbles at her and she stomps her feet but he can’t help but be interested in her. In true alpha male fashion he pushes his way in and starts helping her renovate. Leelo doesn’t take kindly to this for a while because she is trying to stand on her own. But as they work together and open up to each other romance blooms.

If you are looking for a nice slow burn romance with older characters you will love this. It is about real people finding love and learning to stand on their own. The book is rounded out with some colorful characters and a villain trying to sabotage Leelo’s fresh start in town. I am looking forward to what comes next in this series. Well Done!


Freya Barker writes older characters so well, and I really enjoy that. I think with these older characters, you get more out of them and their experiences, as is the case with Lilith (Leelo) and Riordan (Roar).

Leelo has moved to Wawa after inheriting her uncle's motel/bar. She's looking to start fresh after a divorce, and quite honestly falling apart just a bit. She meets Roar pretty quickly, and he doesn't leave a very good impression. Leelo decides that she's going to do all this on her own, but due to some odd occurrences at the motel, she begins connecting with Roar and their friendship, and eventual relationship grows. They're both head strong and stubborn, and watching them try to figure out how to balance each other was fun. There was some drama, albeit mild and dealt with fairly quickly.

Overall, I really enjoyed this series, and if Ms. Barker continues it, I'll definitely pick it up.


Freya Barker inspires with her stories about 'real’ people, perhaps less than perfect, each struggling to find their own slice of happy. She is the author of the Cedar Tree Series and the Portland, ME, novels.
Freya is the recipient of the RomCon “Reader’s Choice” Award for best first book, “Slim To None,” and is a finalist for the 2016 Kindle Book Awards for “From Dust”. She currently has two complete series and three anthologies published, and is working on two new series; La Plata County FBI—ROCK POINT, and Northern Lights. She continues to spin story after story with an endless supply of bruised and dented characters, vying for attention!


Tuesday, August 15, 2017



Beard in Mind, an all new standalone in the bestselling, romantic comedy Winston Brothers Series by Penny Reid, is available NOW!

BIM-cover (2)

All is fair in love and auto maintenance.
Beau Winston is the nicest, most accommodating guy in the world. Usually.
Handsome as the devil and twice as charismatic, Beau lives a charmed life as everyone’s favorite Winston Brother. But since his twin decided to leave town, and his other brother hired a stunning human-porcupine hybrid as a replacement mechanic for their auto shop, Beau Winston’s charmed life has gone to hell in a handbasket.
Shelly Sullivan is not nice and is never accommodating. Ever.
She mumbles to herself, but won’t respond when asked a question. She glares at everyone, especially babies. She won’t shake hands with or touch another person, but has no problems cuddling with a dog. And her damn parrot speaks only in curse words.
Beau wants her gone. He wants her out of his auto shop, out of Tennessee, and out of his life.
The only problem is, learning why this porcupine wears her coat of spikes opens a Pandora’s box of complexity—exquisite, tempting, heartbreaking complexity—and Beau Winston soon discovers being nice and accommodating might mean losing what matters most.


She’d taken the sofa, in her own house, and given me the bed. That didn’t make a lick of sense. I crouched next to her, threading my fingers into the silky hair at her temples. “Honey.” “Mmm.” I bent to whisper, “Shelly.” “Hmm?” “I’m going to carry you to your bed. I’ll take the sofa.” “Mmm.” I grinned at her soft noises, at the untroubled expression on her face, and how her brow—even in sleep—still looked regal and stern. Sliding my arms under her legs and shoulder, I picked her up. And, unfortunately, that woke her up. She jerked in my arms. “What are you doing?” “I’m taking you to the bed.” “Don’t do that.” “I don’t mind, I’ll take the sofa.” Our mouths were just inches apart, and hers was distracting. She squirmed. “Put me down.” Sighing unhappily, I did. I set her on her feet next to the couch. The blanket pooled at her feet and I stepped back to give her some space. It was dark, but I could see her just fine, and that meant I had to force my eyes to remain above her neck. The woman was wearing two pathetic scraps of fabric as pajamas. A thin little tank top and shorts. That’s it. I set my jaw and turned to the side, waiting for her to walk past. “Where are you?” I glanced at her and realized she couldn’t see at all. She didn’t have a hand out, but the way her eyes were moving about the room gave away her blindness. “I’m here.” I didn’t touch her, because if I did, I wouldn’t want to stop. Shelly turned her head in my direction and took a deep breath. Still she didn’t reach for me. I didn’t know the specifics of what to expect after her Friday session, but I recalled Dr. West saying something about Shelly doing self-guided ERP exercises over this week. “Can you see?” She licked her lips, her voice sandpapery. “Because I can’t see at all. It’s so dark.” “I can see.” Unbidden, my eyes dropped to her body, to the swell of her breasts, the panel of bare stomach, the curve of her hips. Pinpricks of heat raised over my skin and I curled my hands into fists. She shuffled forward and I caught her before she bumped into me, setting my hands gently at her waist. “Let me take you to your room.” My voice was rough, for obvious reasons. Saying nothing, she brought her hand to my forearm, her body gently colliding with mine. And then her hand on my arm slid up my bicep to my shoulder. “Shelly.” I was running out of breath. “I like this.” “What?” “Touching you.” Oh fuck. I held still and endured her hands moving over my body, down the front of my shirt, stopping at the hem, then pushing it up. “Take this off.” I did. I pulled the T-shirt over my head and let it drop to the floor. We stood there, facing each other in the dark, not touching. Despite the session on Friday and the progress that had been made, I realized she wasn’t quite there yet. Dr. West was right, Friday was just a step, the first step. Shelly wasn’t able to initiate contact. Not yet. Her hands balled into fists and she swayed forward, her breath struggling little puffs. If anything was going to happen tonight, I had to initiate it. I had to be the one to touch first. God, how I wanted her. How I wanted her above me, beneath me, surrounding me. But how could I? “I know why I hesitate,” her voice was breathless, “but why do you hesitate?” “Lots of reasons.” “Give me one.” “I don’t want to you use you.” “I wish you would.” That pulled a laugh from me, just a small relief from the mounting tension. My eyes moved over her body, an undeniable impulse to devour the sight of her, her legs, stomach, chest, then up her neck to her lips. “You asked me on Saturday if sex was a big deal for me, or if it was you. The answer is both.” She held very still, and I got the sense she was holding her breath, straining to listen. “You are a big deal to me. I don’t want a fling. I don’t want a flirtation. I want promises.” “What can I promise you?” That you’ll love me. That I’ll be your priority. She shifted her weight from foot to foot. A spike of anxiety that she might leave me like this had me acting without forethought. I lifted my hands to her waist again and immediately, her fingertips skimmed over skin of my lower stomach in response, making my muscles tense in hot anticipation. She grew more assertive as she caressed my sides, abdomen, ribs, chest, shoulders, and then back down. Shelly stepped closer, a hint of thrilling contact between her breasts and my torso, and all the words and worries melted from my mind, died on my tongue, suffocated by the feel of her body, and the possibility of this moment. Her finger hooked in the waistband of my jeans. “Take these off.” Her hand turned, her fingers and palm cupping me over my zipper. Instinctively, I pressed myself into her touch even as I grabbed her wrist. “Beau, I promise—” She didn’t get to speak, because I kissed her, hard and wild, unbuttoning and unzipping my fly with one hand and bringing her palm inside my boxers with the other.


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If you have read the Knitting in the city series, you know Shelly Sullivan’s brother Quinn. Shelly has moved to Tennessee hoping to learn how to manage her OCD. It has crippled her and it has caused her to make some big mistakes with her family; especially Quinn. Beau Winston is ready to find the one. He is watching his brothers fall in love and is yearning for his chance. When Shelly starts working at the shop Beau is not happy. Beau is a friendly guy and everyone loves him but Shelly’s cold demeanor has him riled up. Turns out Shelly is quite taken with Beau but doesn’t know how to go about connecting with him because of her OCD.
I loved Beau and his unwavering love and support for Shelly. Not many men would step in and help her with her OCD so early on in a relationship. I really liked Shelly and her pursuit to better herself. My heart broke for her on the days she was really struggling and you could feel it crushing her. Beau was exactly the kind of person she needed in her life because he was could be strong for her.
What did take away from this story was the use of the same timeline as Beard Science. I feel like Shelly and Beau could have been so much more if they weren’t competing with the events we already knew. This wasn’t my favorite Winston book but I still really enjoyed it. I especially teared up towards the end with the scene with her nephew.
Next up is Roscoe’s book but I am impatiently waiting for Billy’s books! Until next time……


Beard in Mind is a hard book to review for me. I liked it, but I didn’t love it and that’s left me just a tiny bit befuddled. I’m always anxious to get my hands another Winston Brothers book, and this was no exception, although it took me 4 days to read it, when normally I could devour it in a day.

Beard in Mind occurs within the same time frame as Beard Science, which sort of through me for a loop, as I wasn’t expecting that. We learn fairly quickly that not all is as it seems with Shelly Sullivan. Yes, she’s standoff-ish and seems quite rude, but once you understand why, it makes more sense and I started to like her more.

Beau is that sweet, endearing fella that we’ve witnessed in previous books. When he learns of Shelly’s issue(s), he doesn’t run and hide; he forges in head first to help her in any way he can, which is nothing less than what I’d expect from him. He has an easy charm and it’s easy to see why everyone finds him so easy to talk to and adore.

The secret that was revealed really didn’t do anything for me and I didn’t really think it was necessary to the plot line. There’s always so much going on with this family that I didn’t think it really needed this twist thrown into the mix, but that’s just my opinion.

I think we got a hint at Roscoe’s possible love interest and I’m really looking forward to it, if that happens! And assuming I’m correct, I can’t wait to see what their back story is.

As I noted previously, while I did like it, I didn’t love it.



Enter the Giveaway!

Meet Penny Reid:

Penny Reid is the USA Today Bestselling Author of the Winston Brothers and Knitting in the City series. When she’s not immersed in penning smart romances, Penny works in the biotech industry as a researcher. She’s also a full time mom to three diminutive adults, wife, daughter, knitter, crocheter, sewer, general crafter, and thought ninja.


Connect with Penny:

Twitter: @ReidRomance

Shattered Blitz ~ JL Drake

Title: Shattered
Series: Broken Trilogy #2
Author: J.L. Drake
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date:  Publisher: Limitless Publishing
5 Stars from Two Darlin’ Dolls and a Book Review - “This book picks up right where we left off, shocked and on the edge of our seats.”
5 Star review from Amazon Customer Renee Bird - “I'm hooked, I couldn't stop reading”
5 Star review from Amazon Customer - “J.L. Drake really knows how to keep you in the edge of your seat!”

4 Stars ~ Given as an ARC for an honest review.

Sad that the book was so short, but happy I didn’t have to wait for the 3rd and final

Prepare to take your emotions on one hell of a roller coaster ride.

How do you survive losing the love of your life and losing the child you never got to tell him about? You don’t. You hit rock bottom and make the worst decision of your shattered life. Savi falls into a deep dark depression after witnessing Cole’s murder and in turn, loses the last piece of him with the miscarriage of their baby.

Savannah is given a second chance when Cole returns alive and is able to find out more about who had her kidnapped and why. Finding out why her own father and best friend orchestrated her kidnapping sends Savi off on another dangerous journey that does not end well. Deciding to leave the safety of the mountain and Cole’s arms is one of the most important decisions of her life.

Do I get why she does it? Yes. Do I agree with her? Absolutely not. What were you thinking woman??? Her decisions jeopardize the lives of so many people…just for her to feel like she “needs” to do this. I call bullshit. Grow up and realize what you have right in front of you, more love, friendship, and a real family that would do lay down their lives for you without a second thought. I don’t agree with Savi’s choices in this installment, but fully understand why J.L. had to what she did to make it work. So much drama in such a small package.

After witnessing the murder of her lover and the heartbreaking loss of their unborn child, Savannah wants to end it all.
Then she is given a second chance at love. Sadly, even when life hands you second chances it doesn’t always follow that things will work out the way you want them to.
Some lies can just be too painful to move on from. What’s worse than being Broken? Being shattered…
Bestselling author J. L. Drake was born and raised in Nova Scotia, Canada, later moving to Southern California where she lives with her husband and two children. 
When she’s not writing, she loves to spend time with her family, travelling or just enjoying a night at home. One thing you might notice in her books is her love for the four seasons. Growing up on the east coast of Canada the change in the seasons is in her blood and is often mentioned in her writing. 
An avid reader of James Patterson, J.L. Drake has often found herself inspired by his many stories of mystery and intrigue. 
She hopes you will enjoy her stories as much as she has enjoyed writing them.