Review: Risky Behavior (Bad Behavior #1) by L.A. Witt and Cari Z.



Risky Behavior (Bad Behavior #1) by L.A. Witt Cari Z.
Published May 1st 2017 by Riptide Publishing
Page Count: 309
Genre: M/M, Crime, Contemporary, Romance

Synopsis from Goodreads:

It’s day one of Darren Corliss’s career as a detective, and not only has he been assigned a notoriously difficult partner, but the guy might also be a pill-popping dirty cop. Internal Affairs needs proof, and Darren gets to be their eyes and ears whether he wants to or not.

Detective Andreas Ruffner doesn’t play by the rules, and he doesn’t play well with others. With bodies piling up and a list of suspects who are way above his pay grade, the last thing he needs is a wet-behind-the-ears kid for a partner. Or babysitter. Not even if that partner is easy on the eyes.

As Darren gains Andreas’s hard-won trust, they both realize there’s more than just mutual suspicion simmering beneath the surface. But their investigation is heating up as quickly as their relationship, and Darren has no choice but to go along with Andreas’s unorthodox—and borderline unethical—methods. As IA puts the squeeze on Darren to give up the man he’s falling for, he has to wonder—is Andreas the only cop left in this town who isn’t dirty?



I.....really love these guys. I love them even more after reading for the second time. I have to admit that during my first read I didn't know what to expect, especially with Andreas, so I found myself waiting for something bad to go down between them. I just didn't want my Darren's heart to get broken. Because, obviously, that's important to me.

While I love Andreas and Darren, they are FAR from perfect! Both have a less than stellar past, Andreas more so than Darren, but when it comes down to right or wrong, you know which side they are going to be on.

I've realized that while I enjoy reading m/m, I need the added excitement of a police procedural to really keep me emotionally invested. This was the perfect blend of all the things I like. The romance was not overdone, and I was okay with that because they are partners, so the closeness is there, but the sex was not front and center. Andreas and Darren have great chemistry, and I can't wait to see how their relationship progresses as the series continues.

I ended up really, really liking Risky Behavior. The story was told in dual pov, which I always enjoy because I can get inside both character's heads. It had really great pacing, an entertaining storyline, two awesomely hot leads, and a cast of interesting supporting characters.

My only real complaint is Darren's lack of reaction to Andreas's medical condition. I was actually shocked, and I expected him to be at least taken aback, but he was totally nonplussed. So that really bothered me.

My Rating: 4.5 Stars
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Excerpt: A Pinch of Salt (Three Sisters Catering #1) by Bethany Lopez


I am excited to share an excerpt of PINCH OF SALT by Bethany Lopez. A Pinch of Salt is the first book in an all-new contemporary romance series, Three Sister's Catering. Check out the excerpt, teasers, and giveaway below for a chance to win a surprise book box! Pre-order your copy now!


A Pinch of Salt by Bethany Lopez

(Three Sisters Catering, #1)
Contemporary Romance - Coming August 21

Add the book to Goodreads


Synopsis:

For the past year, talented chef Millie has been consumed with running her new catering business with her sisters, Dru and Tasha. It isn't until Jackson walks through their door that she realizes something may be missing in the recipe of her life.

For the past year, Jackson has been dealing with the fallout of his wife's abandonment. He's had to learn how to be a single father to their eight-year-old daughter, and will do anything to fill the void her mother left. It isn't until he commissions Millie for his daughter's birthday party that he realizes he's forgotten that he's not only a father, but a man.

They both think they're content in their lives, but sometimes the right amount of spice can turn an okay dish into a magnificent one. A Pinch of Salt may be all that's needed to bring Millie and Jackson the flavor they've been missing.



Pre-order for $3.99

Amazon | iBooks | Kobo | Nook | Smashwords




EXCERPT:

“Fine,” I said with mock exasperation,” I’ll give you the cliff notes.”

Tasha kept her eyes on me as she waited expectantly. She’d recently cut off her long black hair that had matched mine and Dru’s in length into a cute bob, and dyed it a bright red. It totally suited her.

“The party was great, fantastic even. I had a blast decorating, and the girls loved it. I took pictures to show you guys, and for the website,” I began, but Tasha waved her hand, encouraging me to get to the good stuff. “Jackson asked me out,” I said with a shrug, then teased her by saying, “But, I said no.”

“Wha?” Tasha cried, standing and putting her hands on her hips. “Why’d you do that? I thought he was your diary dream man. At least, that’s what Dru said.”

I raised my eyebrow at my twin, who just stuck out her tongue at me and continued stretching her quads.

“He’s also married, and still wears his wedding ring,” I replied, then sighed and added, “But, he assured me that the marriage is very much over, the ring was just an oversight, and we’re going to meet up for coffee this week. So, not a date, just coffee.”

“A coffee date,” Dru said with a grin.

“Shut up,” I replied, but couldn’t hold back my answering smile. “I don’t know, you guys, he scares me.”

“Why?” Tasha asked. “Because you’ve been so focused on the business, and before that, Mom, that you haven’t met a man for coffee, let alone had one between your legs, since you and Dru were at USC?”

“That’s not true,” I argued, offended and a little embarrassed about how right my younger sister was. “There was Joshua…”

“Ewww,” my sisters groaned in unison.

“You mean that creeper guy who kept taking you to Anime movies and trying to get you to give him a handy in the theater?” Dru asked. “You really want to count that guy?”

GIVEAWAY

Use the hashtag #APINCHOFSALT on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram, with the book's buy links, for a chance to win a surprise book box!

Each box will contain the ARC and some incredible goodies!

Preorder Now Available - $3.99

Amazon - http://bit.ly/PinchofSaltAMZ

iBooks - http://bit.ly/PinchofSaltIBOOKS

Kobo - http://bit.ly/PinchofSaltKOBO

Nook - http://bit.ly/PinchofSaltNOOK

Smashwords - http://bit.ly/PinchofSaltSW



AUTHOR INFORMATION:

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Award-Winning Author Bethany Lopez began self-publishing in June 2011. She's a lover of all things romance: books, movies, music, and life, and she incorporates that into the books she writes. When she isn't reading or writing, she loves spending time with her husband and children, traveling whenever possible. Some of her favorite things are: Kristen Ashley Books, coffee in the morning, and In N Out burgers.
AUTHOR LINKS:
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Waiting On Wednesday (300) Reunion (Diversion #6) by Eden Winters



Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

This is my 300th Waiting on Wednesday post!!
This my favorite day of the week because I love sharing and discovering new books.


Expected publication: August 19th 2017 by Rocky Ridge Books

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Reunions can be murder.

A dial tone instead of a human voice announced Lucky’s ousting from the Lucklighter clan over twelve years ago. After living a life of crime. After testifying against his drug lord lover. After receiving a ten-year sentence. Ah, hell. Lucky would’ve disowned himself too.

Now life’s better. He’s done his time and earned a place in the Southeastern Narcotics Bureau’s Department of Diversion Prevention and Control. He has a house. He has Bo, his partner both on and off the job. And pets. But not his folks. The worst part? He’s not sure exactly why they disowned him. Too late now—they think he’s dead.

Now his father needs a gift only Lucky can give. And Lucky’s family has something that may destroy all he believes:

The truth.

I just finished book 4 last night.... and where Lucky and Bo left off made me all sorts of sad. I was late to this series, so I'm not technically 'behind' with my reading, but I definitely need to read book 5 so I can get my hands on this baby and read it right away.

What are you waiting on this week?
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Review: Diversion (Diversion #1) by Eden Winters



Diversion (Diversion #1) by Eden Winters
Published June 20th 2015 by Rocky Ridge Books (first published March 2012)
Page Count: 238
Genre: M/M, Crime, Contemporary, Romance

Synopsis from Goodreads:

There are good guys, bad guys, and then there’s Lucky.

Former drug trafficker Richmond “Lucky” Lucklighter flaunts his past like a badge of honor. He speaks his mind, doesn’t play nice, and flirts with disaster while working off his sentence with the Southeastern Narcotics Bureau. If he can keep out of trouble a while longer he’ll be a free man–after he trains his replacement.

Textbook-quoting, by the book Bo Schollenberger is everything Lucky isn’t. Lucky slurps coffee, Bo lives caffeine free. Lucky worships bacon, Bo eats tofu. Lucky trusts no one, Bo calls suspects by first name. Yet when the chips are down on their shared case of breaking up a drug diversion ring, they may have more in common than they believe.

Two men. Close quarters. Friction results in heat. But Lucky scoffs at partnerships, no matter how thrilling the roller-coaster. Bo has two months to break down Lucky’s defenses… and seconds are ticking by.


I had a really rough start with Diversion. I was ready to dnf before the 40% mark. I wasn't connecting with the characters, and the writing style was really throwing me off. I just couldn't get in the groove! But then I must have gotten used to it, or the writing got a little bit better. Either way, I started enjoying the story a LOT more.

Lucky turned out to be alright, and I liked him well enough. He wasn't nearly as snarky as I was led to believe, but I did enjoy his inner dialogue a lot. I liked Bo, but I didn't get to know him very well since the story is from Lucky's POV. I'm hoping to get Bo's POV as the series progresses.

I liked Lucky and Bo together because I thought they made sense. They're not necessarily opposites, but they definitely don't seem like couple material. However, I enjoyed seeing their relationship grow and change at work and at home. I especially loved Lucky's reactions every time he realized he was having 'feelings'. Poor guy.

My biggest gripe about this book? How disappointing was that 'reunion' scene! I thought it was seriously lacking any real emotion, and I just really wanted needed more from my guys (especially Bo!)

Even though the story wasn't fast paced or action packed, it was still different and interesting enough to keep me reading to the end. I did end up enjoying the book overall, and I'm looking forward to continuing the series.


My Rating: 4 Stars


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Waiting On Wednesday (299) Dress Codes for Small Towns by Courtney C. Stevens



Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

I've been participating in Waiting on Wednesday for over 5 years because Wednesday is my favorite day of the week! I love sharing and discovering new books.


Expected publication: August 22nd 2017 by HarperTeen

Synopsis from Goodreads:

As the tomboy daughter of the town’s preacher, Billie McCaffrey has always struggled with fitting the mold of what everyone says she should be. She’d rather wear sweats, build furniture, and get into trouble with her solid group of friends: Woods, Mash, Davey, Fifty, and Janie Lee.

But when Janie Lee confesses to Billie that she’s in love with Woods, Billie’s filled with a nagging sadness as she realizes that she is also in love with Woods…and maybe with Janie Lee, too.

Always considered “one of the guys,” Billie doesn’t want anyone slapping a label on her sexuality before she can understand it herself. So she keeps her conflicting feelings to herself, for fear of ruining the group dynamic. Except it’s not just about keeping the peace, it’s about understanding love on her terms—this thing that has always been defined as a boy and a girl falling in love and living happily ever after. For Billie—a box-defying dynamo—it’s not that simple.

I haven't been reading too much YA recently, but this sounds different and interesting, so I'm eager to read it.

What are you waiting on this week?
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Review: A Ghost of a Chance by Josh Lanyon



A Ghost of a Chance by Josh Lanyon
Publication Date: March 11th 2012
Page Count: 101
Published by: Just Joshin
Genre: M/M, Paranormal, Romance

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Over a century ago Illusionist David Berkeley committed suicide in his mansion by the sea, thus dooming his restless spirit to wander forever. Or so the local legend goes...

Professor Rhys Davies, a part-time parapsychologist, is writing a book on California hauntings and he believes the crumbling ruins of Berkeley House will make a terrific chapter -- if he can gain access to the house and grounds. The only obstacle is brooding cop and self-appointed caretaker, Sam Devlin. As obstacles go, Devlin is a big one.

But you know what they say. The bigger they are, the harder they fall...



Lanyon is able to write credible stories with likeable characters in just a few pages. This time around it's a geeky professor and a big, burly, hardened, and surprisingly homely, cop. Not your typical MCs, but I've come to expect it from this author. Both Rhys and Sam had qualities that I liked, and I actually enjoyed them together.

The mystery/ghost part of the story was really good. Good enough that I had to stop reading at 1 AM when I became a little too scared to continue. Yep, I'm afraid of things that go bump in the night, and I wasn't sure just how scary the book would actually be. So I waited until the following morning to finish, which I think I was better for me.

As with a lot of Lanyon's short stories, this is bare boned and to the point. The romance was natural, if a bit rushed, but left off with a promise of what could be. Overall, this was a very enjoyable read that was imaginative and well written.

My Rating: 4 Stars


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Review: You Never Know by Mary Calmes



Publication Date: July 21, 2017
Page Count: 212
Published by: Dreamspinner Press
Source: purchased
Genre: M/M, Contemporary, Romance

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Hagen Wylie has it all figured out. He’s going to live in his hometown, be everybody’s friend, explore new relationships, and rebuild his life after the horrors of war. No muss, no fuss is the plan. He’s well on his way—until he finds out his first love has come home too. Hagen says it’s no big deal, but a chance encounter with Mitch Thayer’s two cute sons puts him directly in the path of the only guy he’s never gotten out of his head.

Mitch returned for three reasons: to raise his sons where he grew up, to move his furniture business and encourage it to thrive, and to win Hagen back. Years away made it perfectly clear the young man he loved in high school is the only one for him. The problem? He left town and they have not talked since.

If Hagen’s going to trust him again, Mitch needs to show him how he’s grown up and isn’t going to let go. They could have a new chance at love… but Hagen is insistent he’s not reviving a relationship with Mitch. Then again, you never know.


To be honest, I really didn't like this book. I think I've read enough Mary Calmes to know what to expect, but I thought this was shallow and pointless. There was a ton of meaningless dialogue that just went around in circles. I hated that Hagen's 'flashbacks' were always right in the middle of a conversation. He would zone out while he recalled the past, then have to be literally snapped back to the present and the conversation he was having. That grew tiresome.

Not much really happened in this story. I was at 60% and it was still the same day. Hagen spent most of this book with Ash, so when Mitch showed up I was ready for the story to move along already. But then I realized that Hagen and Mitch had no present day knowledge of each other, so everything they were feeling was from their shared history as teenagers, and not based on adult reality.

This book was just not for me, which I found disappointing because I freaking adore her Marshals series. I'm hoping to find something else of hers to read that can bring me the same joy as Miro and Ian.

I read a book with the same general premise - teenagers in love, one goes away for 15 years and then returns - except the Common Law Series by Kate Sherwood is far, far superior to this book.

My Rating: 2.5 Stars

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Waiting On Wednesday (298) The Secret History of Us by Jessi Kirby



Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly anticipating.

I've been participating in Waiting on Wednesday for over 5 years because Wednesday is my favorite day of the week! I love sharing and discovering new books.


Published August 1st 2017 by HarperTeen

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Gorgeously written and emotionally charged, The Secret History of Us explores the difficult journey of a teenage girl who must piece her life together after losing her memory in a near-fatal accident.

When Olivia awakes in a hospital bed following a car accident that almost took her life, she can’t remember the details about how she got there. She figures the fog is just a symptom of being in a week-long coma, but as time goes on, she realizes she’s lost more than just the last several days of her life—she’s lost her memory of the last four years. Gone is any recollection of starting or graduating high school; the prom; or her steady boyfriend Matt. Trying to figure out who she is feels impossible when everyone keeps telling her who she was.

As Liv tries to block out what her family and friends say about who she used to be, the one person she hasn’t heard enough from is Walker, the guy who saved her the night her car was knocked off that bridge into the bay below. Walker is the hardened boy who’s been keeping his distance—and the only person Olivia inexplicably feels herself with. With her feelings growing for Walker, tensions rising with Matt, and secrets she can’t help but feel are being kept from her, Olivia must find her place in a life she doesn’t remember living.

I missed the release date on this by 1 day. Oops. I've read and enjoyed this author's previous books, so I've had this on my tbr list for a while. It's short - only 288 pages. I'll probably see if I can get it from my local library.

What are you waiting on this week?

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Monthly Recap: July 2017


Happy August to you! I can't believe it's already August. I'm so glad my kids are too old for school. Time means nothing around my house!

I had another full month of reading in July, even though most were re-reads. I was just in a particular mood and knew exactly what I wanted to read. So I did. Hmph. Take that!

As of right now, I am 51 books ahead of schedule on my Goodreads challenge.


Re-read in July:
Because they were soooo good the first time around, I just HAD to read them again!










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