Saturday, June 28, 2014

Book review: Coming Home by Priscilla Glenn

If you’ve read my previous reviews, you know I’m a fan of Priscilla Glenn’s books. She captured my heart with Back To You (read my review here) and Emancipating Andie (read my review here) so I was pretty sure I would end up falling in love with her new book too. After the third book I can say without any trace of doubt that I would buy Priscilla’s books even without reading the blurb or knowing what the book's about. She’s that good.

I read Coming Home in March and I was so overwhelmed and so hung over that I decided to wait a few days before writing my review. Then I got busy with the final edits for Hold On To Love and it totally slipped my mind. But I want to write this review and share it with my followers because, if you haven’t read any of Priscilla Glenn’s books, I think it’s time you one-clicked and got to know the amazing stories she creates.

Coming Home is a fantastic book. It’s a story of loss, of grief, of redemption and of learning to trust and love again. It's one of those books you can't put down but at the same time you wish would never end.

Leah and Danny meet by chance when Leah stops by her childhood house, that now belongs to Danny’s Gram. Their meet-cute is actually rather funny and I immediately liked Danny the moment he entered the scene. For a twist of fate, they’re forced to meet again and, even though they both feel attraction for the other, they convince themselves they can’t see each other again. Obviously, their plan doesn’t work and as they start getting closer, things start getting complicated because Danny has a secret, a secret that Priscilla keeps well hidden until at least half of the book and that kept me on the edge of my seat while I was trying to guess what it could be. When the secret is uncovered (and believe me, I did not see it coming!) Leah’s life is turned upside down but will their love be strong enough to survive or will Danny’s secret bring both of them down into the depth of despair? For obvious reasons I will not tell you what happens and won’t write a detailed synopsis – if you want to know what his secret is and what happens to them, you’ll have to read the book! :)

Talking about the characters, well, Priscilla has a way of creating them and making them feel real, with their good qualities and their flaws, that will make you feel like you’re with them, in their heads, feel what they feel, suffer with them, laugh with them and you end up feeling as if you actually knew them.

Leah, just like all of Priscilla’s heroines, is AWESOME. Seriously, she’s strong and independent, yet she’s fragile and insecure, she’s scared of falling in love yet she can’t fight the feelings for Danny. Every heroine in Priscilla’s books is someone I wish were my best friend and Leah joins the team with Lauren and Andie. It’s hard to really like a heroine in a romance, since it’s so much easier to fall for the hero that most of the time I end up not caring too much what happens to the heroine. But you can’t help loving Leah and root for her to get her happy ending.
Despite all the curve balls life threw at her, Leah is still going strong, she’s still fighting for what she believes in, she’s there for her father and for her siblings and when Danny’s secret is revealed, she takes the blow but keeps standing and decides to fight fate.

Danny. He would deserve so much more than a few lines in my review. He would actually deserve a whole post just for him. He’s simply adorable. He’s an amazing book boyfriend. He’s handsome, funny, cocky, strong and the way he cares about Gram is just so touching it will make your heart melt. I found myself laughing, swooning, screaming at him and then falling in love with him over and over again. And crying. Yes, I did shed a few tears at some point, but I won’t say when. If you read it, I’m sure you will too.

What I love about Priscilla’s books is that, unlike many other authors, she doesn’t use major drama or angst, nor she resorts to the use of long, detailed sex scenes to keep the readers hooked. What captures the reader from page one and takes her on a wonderful journey until the very last page are emotions. Emotions are strong and vivid; they’re so real you’ll be able to feel them seep through your pores and slowly crawl through your veins until they reach your heart and envelope it in a warm hug.

When I start a new book by Priscilla Glenn, I brace myself for an emotional journey that will make me laugh, swoon, cry and I know that the story will stay with me long after I’ve reached the last page. Coming Home was no exception. I couldn’t get over it. I couldn’t stop thinking of Danny and Leah, wondering what happened next, hoping Priscilla would write a sequel – just like every time I finish one of her books.

I strongly recommend this book to everyone and I will never stop praising Priscilla’s talent. Seriously, if you haven’t read any of her books, you should log on to Amazon now and treat yourself. You won’t be disappointed.

Have you read Coming Home already? Leave a comment and let me know what you thought of it.
Monday, June 23, 2014

Hold On To Love BLITZ

Hold on to Love

Hi everyone! It's been exactly 10 days since the official release of Hold On To Love and so far it has received some fantabulous reviews - including two from my favourite authors Sophie Moss and Tracey Alvarez.

Today Sean and Alyssa will be under the spotlight in lots of blogs, and more reviews will be posted by the bloggers who signed up for an ARC - I'm sooo excited (but nervous at the same time!)
At the end of this post you'll find 2 giveaways: one is to win an ebook of Hold On To Love, the other is my personal giveaway for a chance to win the ultimate swag set. I've noticed that there have been no entries yet but I hope it's because I haven't advertised well enough, so here I go again: if you are among the adorable people who bought a copy of HOTL over the last ten days, or you received an ARC or won a copy at the party, you are eligible to enter the giveaway, so don't miss out. :)


Book Title: Hold on to Love
Author: Roberta Capizzi
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: June 23, 2014
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions

Three weeks. All Alyssa O’Riordan needs is three weeks away from her wealthy life in New York City, to clear her mind and decide what she wants from her life. A dude ranch in Wyoming seems like the perfect place for a temporary escape from the cage her life has become.
What she doesn’t expect is to come face-to-face with a handsome cowboy, who’s just as grumpy and rough as he is good-looking. All of a sudden, the promise of a relaxing, invigorating holiday seems long gone.

Three weeks. For Sean Maclaine, three weeks around the new guest feel like an eternity. After his first-hand experience with the upper class, rich daddy’s girls have become his worst nightmare, so when Alyssa O’Riordan shows up at his family’s ranch, he knows the time won’t go by fast enough. All he has to do is stay away from her, and count the hours until she finally goes back to New York.

Three weeks. Will three weeks be long enough for them to get over their prejudices and start looking beyond the surface?

Sean stood up and slammed his rubber gloves hard on the floor. Alyssa gave a start, and instinctively took a step back.
“What’s wrong?” she dared to ask, hoping it wasn’t something she’d said or done.
“Rosie’s ready to deliver and my parents will be gone all day. Even if I called them now they wouldn’t be back in time and I just can’t do this alone.”
He removed his cowboy hat and wiped his forehead with the back of his hand. A second later, he started pacing nervously back and forth, scratching the back of his neck as if he wanted to peel the skin off. It was weird to see him like this, totally out of control.
“You’ve never done it before?” she asked, immediately regretting her surprised tone which would probably upset him even more. She braced herself for his reaction but instead he hung his head, and shook it in resignation.
“I’ve seen my father doing it a hundred times, but all I did was assist him. I wouldn’t know where to start.”
“I’m sure you’ll know what to do once you start. I can try to help, if you want."
He stopped pacing and looked at her with a smirk on his face.
“Help? Ha! Wouldn’t you ruin your manicure?”
The way he cocked his left eyebrow and his ironic tone made blood rush straight to her head. Her cheeks flushed; she had never wanted to slap someone so much as she did now, not even Julian back in court.
“You know, if you don’t want people to treat you like a stupid countryman, maybe you should stop acting like one!”
This guy always managed to make her lose her mind; he seemed to bring out the most irrational and instinctive part of her. It scared her more than it annoyed her. She’d always considered herself a good-mannered girl who knew how to behave at dinners amongst upper-class people, but ever since she came here she’d become a different person—somebody she didn’t know and was afraid of.
He shrugged, totally unfazed by her words. “I thought you said you were a lawyer: what would you know about it? How could you possibly help? I didn’t know lawyers in New York had cows in their backyards.”
“You’re just a stupid, childish, pigheaded man with a smaller brain than that of a country rat,” she spat out, unable and unwilling to control herself any longer. She’d had enough of his harshness. She’d done nothing to deserve it. “I’ve grown so tired of your stupid prejudices. I don’t know what’s so wrong with me, apart from belonging to a wealthy family. I didn’t ask for it, and I’m sorry if it bothers you, but that’s the way it is.”
She turned around, meaning to leave, but she realized that if she did it would be just like admitting he was right, and that she was only a posh city girl who didn’t want to ruin her designer clothes and manicure. She turned back and glared at him.
“I wish I could just walk out and leave you to it, but I’m sorry for Rosie and I want to do something to help, even if it only means fetching a bucket of water or bringing some more hay.”
She folded her arms across her chest and shot him a look of defiance, as if to challenge him to say one more nasty word to her now. If only one of them could play the part of the adult then she knew she’d have to be it.

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Monday, June 16, 2014

Release event: Melting Into You by Tracey Alvarez

Melting in to you release day  
Melting Amazon

Book Title: Melting in to you (Due South Book 2) 
Author: Tracey Alvarez 
Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Release Date: June 16, 2014 

Big, sexy men who don’t relate well to kids need not apply…

Kezia Murphy plays her widow card well. When you don’t trust people not to let you down, it’s easier to not get involved—and getting involved with a man who makes her skin sizzle just by looking at him would be una pazzia—crazy! Four years ago while Kezia’s daughter, Zoe, battled leukaemia, a tragic accident stole her husband’s life. Starting over in the little town of Oban where she’s adopted into the close knit community on Stewart Island, Kezia and her daughter are all the family the other needs. Except Zoe yearns for more.
New Zealand’s worst candidate for instant fatherhood…

Ben doesn’t do gooey emotional stuff. He doesn’t do cosy home and family. And he sure isn’t the big teddy-bear Kezia Murphy, the woman he secretly fantasises about, thinks he is. So when Jade, his surprise eight-year-old daughter arrives on his doorstep, he’s a D-minus student struggling to pass a crash-course in parenting.

They’ll either melt or raze their lives to the ground…

When the sparks of attraction between Kezia and Ben fan into an inferno, Ben doesn’t know how much longer the layers of resistance around his heart can resist melting into the gooey mess he fears. The more he fights it the harder it is to make the choice that will destroy the family he now longs to claim.

Tracey Alvarez lives in the Coolest Little Capital in the World (a.k.a Wellington, New Zealand) where she’s yet to be buried under her to-be-read book pile by Wellington’s infamous wind—her Kindle’s a lifesaver! Married to a wonderfully supportive IT guy, she has two teens who would love to be surgically linked to their electronic devices.
Fuelled by copious amounts of coffee, she’s the author of contemporary romantic fiction set predominantly in New Zealand. Small-towns, close communities, and families are a big part of the heart-warming stories she writes. Oh, and hot, down-to-earth heroes—Kiwi men, in other words.
When she’s not writing, thinking about writing, or procrastinating about writing, Tracey can be found reading sexy books of all romance genres, nibbling on smuggled chocolate bars, or bribing her kids to take over the housework.


Kezia swayed toward him, his gravity too strong to resist. His fingers still stroked her knuckles, distracting her from the close bulk of his body.
“How do you see me now?” she asked.
If his legs weren’t in her way, she would’ve kicked herself for the breathy, flirty words falling from her mouth. Her toes curled inside her slippers. She wasn’t a flirt—well, she hadn’t been a flirt for many, many years. Had assumed she’d forgotten how in the midst of rebuilding her and Zoe’s lives.
“As a woman. A beautiful woman.” His low voice twined around her, as rich and luxurious as the most expensive silk.
“You shouldn’t. You have to stop.” She tugged her hand from the sweet torture of his fingers and pushed against his chest. His broad, muscled, warm-to-the-touch chest.
Big mistake.
Fine lines around his eyes crinkled. “What I’ve seen can’t be unseen.”
Kezia’s gaze dropped to his lips, outlined with the dark growth of five o’clock shadow. Soft and rough and oh-so-bad for her. “Ben—”
He dipped his head, and like a flicked switch, her eyelids slipped down and her lips parted. If her mind had forgotten those exquisite moments before a kiss, her body hadn’t. Breathless anticipation squeezed low in her belly at Ben’s salty, smoky scent. His soft breath feathered her skin. One large, calloused hand covered her fingers, which clutched fistfuls of his tee shirt.
“Easy.” He followed the word with the pressure of his lips to hers, the impact of his touch like a zap of static electricity.
Her eyes popped open, a shiver skating down her spine. Ben stared, his eyes narrowed, lashes masking his expression. Had he felt the spark of intense connection too? Or was it the overactive imagination of a woman who hadn’t had sex in almost half a decade? Sexually frustrated widow over-reacts to a simple kiss. Like a newspaper headline running through her mind. Mortifying.

Melting Into You is the second book in a series I hope will go on and on. I loved In Too Deep, the first book in the series (check my review here), and fell in love with the handsome and cocky free-diver Ryan Westlake, a.k.a. West so I was looking forward to reading more. When I first discovered that the book would be about Ben and Kezia I wasn’t sure what to expect. Although they were nice side characters in In Too Deep, I wanted more West. But knowing the author’s writing style, I was pretty sure I’d like this book just as much.

I was a little taken aback at first, when the bomb was dropped and this woman showed up on Ben’s doorstep with an eight-year-old girl who turned out to be his daughter.

Wait, what?! You have got to be kidding me, right?

Yep, that was exactly my reaction. In book one we didn’t get up close and personal with Ben but from what we’d gotten to see, he was a sort of commitment-phobic womanizer as well as a grumpy, stubborn man. How was he going to take care of a kid? Well, this turns out to be the source for the funniest moments in the book and it completely changed the opinion of Ben I had from the first book. Daddy Ben is hilarious. I laughed out loud at the way he tried, not very successfully, to interact with his daughter.
Even though at first I thought Ben was just a selfish grouch, as the story progressed I started to like him a little more with every page and by the end of the book I was torn between West and him as my favourite hero in the series. Add a puppy to the story and Ben turned into the cutest and funniest grouch ever. :)

Kezia. Now, what can be said about her? I liked her in the first book, even though she only appeared every now and then, and I loved her in this one. She’s a great heroine and I loved how she always tried to put her daughter’s happiness and well-being first (who, by the way, is named Zoe Roberta – I’m rather flattered! :) ), even though this meant she had to hold back her feelings.

The two little girls are amazing. I loved Zoe in the first book, and I got even fonder of her in this one; Jade, Ben’s daughter, is super cute and I loved how she turned from a shy and scared little thing into a lively little thing that changed Ben’s life forever – and for the best, may I add.

I was happy Piper and West were still part of the story, and I liked Shaye’s parts too (Ben’s sister).
I’m looking forward to reading more about these great characters and I hope there’ll be many more books in the Due South series, because I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to let go of my favourite kiwi boyfriends!

There is a little bit of angst toward the end and you’ll be on the edge of your seat for a chapter or two, but there is a happy ending so it’s okay – no spoilers here but, hey, you know I wouldn’t enjoy a book without a HEA. :)

If you’ve read In Too Deep, then you HAVE to read this book too; but even if you haven’t read In Too Deep, you can enjoy Melting Into You all the same, because it’s a beautiful, sexy and romantic story, with strong chemistry between the two main characters and lots of funny moments that will bring a silly grin to your face.

I love Tracey’s writing and I can’t wait to read more.

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