Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Blog tour: Batter Up by Robyn Neeley

Batter Up
By: Robyn Neeley
Releasing August 1st
Escape Publishing

She mixes more than flour and sugar into her cake batter, and he’s about to find out if a little bit of magic is to his taste…

Bakeshop owner Emma Stevens has a secret, a delicious, slightly unorthodox secret. Each Monday, she mixes up a premonition to share with the bachelors of Buttermilk Falls, and sets one lucky man on the path to true love.

When reporter Jason Levine finds himself mixed up in a Las Vegas bachelorette party, he hears the strangest rumor: the marriage is happening thanks to magical cake batter. Seriously skeptical and sick of frauds, Jason journeys to the backwater town of Buttermilk Falls to expose the baker and release the townspeople from her evil clutches.

But when Jason meets Emma, tempers flare and sparks fly. Will Jason cling to his logic, at the expense of a future or will he let himself fall under Emma’s spell?

Robyn Neeley is an East Coaster who loves to explore new places, watches way more reality TV than she cares to admit, can’t live without Dunkin Donuts iced coffee, and has truly never met a cookie she didn’t like. If you have a must-read romance suggestion or a fabulous cookie recipe, she wants to know.


Emma spooned up a huge dollop of batter. “So, Jason, are you ready?” she asked in a suggestive voice.
“Sure.” He closed his laptop. His eyes danced with amusement.
“Here’s what I need you to do. Close your eyes.” 
He obediently shut them. Emma couldn’t help but take this opportunity to stare at his handsome face. Her eyes lingered on his full lips. Stop it, Emma. He’s the enemy.
“Everything okay?” Jason opened one eye.
“Shut them.” She reached for his hand and inserted the spoon. “Repeat after me. Batter 
I’m about to taste. Show me my true love, and make haste.”
Abby giggled. Emma put her finger to her lips, motioning her cousin to be quiet.
Jason repeated the chant, eyes still closed. “Now what?”
“You eat the spoonful. You have to do it in one large swallow, got it?”
“Okay, easy enough.” He shoved the spoon into his mouth. Within seconds his eyes 
flew open and he reached for his throat, gasping for air. “Water,” he choked out.
Abby rushed over with a water pitcher and glass. He drank the full glass and 
demanded another. His eyes were red and watery. Little droplets of sweat began to form on 
his forehead.
Emma smiled and picked up the mixing bowl, hugging it tight to her chest. “I think you 
should leave now. This stool is no longer available.”
Jason stood and shook his head. “You got me good, Ms. Stevens.” He grabbed his laptop 
and started for the door, still coughing. 
Abby rushed over and handed him a bottle of water. “For the road.”
Turning back to Emma, she grinned. Something was forming in her cousin’s pretty 
little head. “So, Jason, does anyone call you J?” 
“What?” Jason turned around. He twisted the bottle cap and took a large swallow.
“You know. Just by your initial?” She handed him a napkin.
“My mom did.” He took another drink and wiped the sweat from his forehead.
“I see.” Abby shot Emma a smug expression. 
Emma walked over and crossed her arms, her voice firm and in control. “Get out of my 
bakery, Mr. Levine. There’s no story here.”

What a refreshing, romantic and cute read! In a publishing world dominated by alpha male heroes, where graphic sex overshadows feelings, a book like Batter Up is a breath of much needed fresh air.

After coming across many books that used long sex scenes to keep the word count high enough to make it a novel, and others that threw in lots of angst just to keep the story interesting, I’d thought I’d never have the pleasure of reading a good ol’ romance where love and feelings play the most important part. I’d been led to believe that if I wanted to keep reading romance novels I would have to accept graphic sex scenes, bad-tempered, womanizing heroes and probably a good dose of “colourful” language.
I’m glad Robyn Neeley proved me wrong and restored my faith in good old-fashioned romance.

This book has been such an enjoyable read, I read it in two days (but only because I had to go to sleep and eat, otherwise I would have gladly read it in one sitting). It’s one of those books that I didn’t want to put down but at the same time I didn’t want to finish reading.

It’s a cute story with some funny moments, a great heroine, an adorable hero and some fantastic side characters. I loved the small town setting, the “everyone knows everyone” way of life, the Summer Fair and traditions and, obviously, I ended up with a wild craving for cupcakes!

Emma, the heroine, is the owner of a bakery in Buttermilk Falls, a small town a few hours away from New York. Her bakery isn’t famous only for her cupcakes, though: every Monday night all the town bachelors gather in Sugar Spoon to take part in Batter Up Night, the moment when Emma creates her special recipe and tells one lucky bachelor the name of his soul mate. How? Well, thanks to her grandmother’s magic spoon, she mixes a special cupcake batter and after she casts the spell, a woman’s name will magically appear in the batter. Everyone in town believes the spell is true and every couple that was created thanks to Batter Up Night has had their happily ever after without any complaints. The only one who hasn’t benefited from the magic batter is Emma herself, since apparently the batter likes men best and won’t share the magic with bachelorettes.

Until one night Abby, Emma’s super funny cousin and business partner, tries to cast the spell on Emma and a mysterious J appears in the batter. Could a man be entering Emma’s life any time soon?

Two months after the spell we get to witness in the first chapter, Jason Levine, a Miami reporter is spending a weekend in Las Vegas, meeting up with an old friend, and ends up crashing a wedding where he hears a funny story about the bride and groom being predicted their wedding by a magic batter. Always looking for a good story to revive his quickly decaying career, Jason decides to investigate and reveal the fraud, so he and Brandon decide to spend a week in Buttermilk Falls and find out as many details as possible about this magical matchmaker.

What he doesn’t expect is to become said matchmaker’s Summer Fling after she buys him at an auction…
I can’t tell you more than this because I would be spoiling the fun, but be ready for some funny moments and hilarious banter (their meet-cute is the most hilarious I’ve read in years).

Batter Up is a story that will make you laugh and believe that love is a little kind of magic after all. 
You will be rooting for the happily ever after and, if you’re anything like me, you will reach the end hoping for a sequel.

I will definitely look out for more titles by Robyn Neeley.


$5.00 Amazon Gift Card & Backlist Romance from Robyn
and a Second Winner will receive a Digital Backlist by Robyn

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