Friday, May 22, 2015

review || ALL OF ME { blog tour }

All of Me by Jennifer Bernard

Publisher: Avon (5/26/2015)
Series: Love Between the Bases, book 1
Genre: Sport Romance
Source: Tasty Book Tours / Edelweiss
Purchase links || amazon | bn | bam | publisher || add to goodreads

Rating: ★★★★1/2

Jennifer Bernard, the USA Today bestselling author of the Bachelor Firemen series, scores another homerun with a brand-new series about sexy, single baseball players.

Playing for the Kilby Catfish is hotshot pitcher Caleb Hart’s last chance to salvage his career after a major league meltdown. But the day of his opener with the minor league team, Caleb strikes out with the gorgeous woman who is delivering a petition to run the unruly Catfish out of town. Now to stay in the lineup, Caleb will need to score big with the feisty brunette he can’t keep out of his thoughts.

After the nasty lies Sadie Merritt’s rich ex-boyfriend spread about her all over town, she’s lucky to have a job at all. She can’t afford to screw it up by falling for the player who is supposed to be helping her change the image of the fun-loving Catfish. But that’s easier said than done when Caleb’s voice alone is enough to make her pulse race. And when he surprises her with a mind-blowing kiss, she knows there’s no turning back.

about Jennifer || Jennifer Bernard is the USA Today bestselling author of the Bachelor Firemen of San Gabriels series. She is a graduate of Harvard and a former news promo producer. The child of academics, she confounded her family by preferring romance novels to … well, any other books. She left big city life for true love in Alaska, where she now lives with her husband and stepdaughters. She’s no stranger to book success, as she also writes erotic novellas under a naughty secret name not to be mentioned at family gatherings.

{ excerpt } .
Caleb made her lose her head, plain and simple.

 Sadie rested her forehead against his chest, amazed all over again by the firmness of his toughened muscles. The heat of his body contrasted with the cool water in the most heavenly way. “Maybe I didn’t think this all the way through.” 

“Are you telling me a dumb baseball player got the better of a brilliant future law student? Nah.” He bent his head so he could nuzzle her hair. “You smell nice. Like water lilies.” 

She smelled hot man, mixed with lake water and sun-baked mesquite. Somehow they’d drifted away from the gravelly edge, so the stench of mud wasn’t as prominent. She felt so dreamy and secure, held tight in Caleb’s arms as they floated aimlessly in the lake. He grinned down at her, the light reflected off the lake water turning his eyes a soft, clear blue. Sun glinted in his hair, spangled with crystal drops of water. He really was a remarkably beautiful man. Everything seemed to still while she soaked in the details of his powerful physique, his rawboned handsomeness, the flash of vulnerability in his eyes. 

She could really lose herself in him. Completely and utterly. Never before had she felt anything close to that. 

“Dream on,” she told him, and flipped out of his arms. She dove under the surface, letting the slide of water through her hair and across her body wash away the effects of that alarming moment. 
She’d always loved to swim, and it took only a few moments to put distance between herself and Caleb. But he wasn’t a professional athlete for nothing, and within moments he was splashing in her wake. 

Shrieking with breathless laughter, she flung herself backward, as if onto a watery couch. He grabbed an ankle, and she flipped to her stomach, kicking hard. But it was no use; she felt herself being inexorably pulled toward him, his wonderfully big hands reeling her in. 

And then there she was, snuggled against his chest again. It rose and fell with his rapid breaths. “There, that’s better,” he said with satisfaction, the words rumbling against her ear. “I kinda like this whole fishing thing.” 

“No fair, I got distracted,” she protested, turning her body in the circle of his arms so she could see his face. Water streamed from his hair, down his neck to his wide shoulders. His eyelashes clung together, so his eyes looked bluer than ever. “I’d forgotten how much I love swimming in this lake.” 
“It’s starting to grow on me too. Or at least something is.” 

She giggled, and then, as a grin split his face, started laughing. As he watched her something shifted in his expression. His goofy smile vanished, replaced by an intent, hungry look. His head lowered, eyes glittering. The rest of the world receded, so only his face remained, coming closer and closer to hers, his mouth reaching for her …    

Oh wow. He was going to kiss her. 

And then he was kissing her. His lips burned against hers, sending pure shock throughout her body. Kisses didn’t feel like that. They didn’t turn your lips to fire, they didn’t liquefy your lungs so you could barely breathe. They didn’t make you dizzy. 

She pulled away with a gasp, still in his embrace, their faces close enough so she felt his quickened breathing. Caleb looked just as stunned as she felt, his eyes gone dark and gray as a hurricane. For a long moment the two of them just stared at each other, poised on the edge of the unknown. Water lapped against her hips, and a breath of air kissed her shoulder. Everywhere her body touched Caleb’s, heat seared. 

And then they were on each other again. He seemed to consume her, exploring her mouth with long sweeps of his tongue that left sparkling trails of heat in their wake. He tasted so wonderful, like summer days, like fireflies and bicycling down dusty back roads, like every time she’d laid on her back in a meadow and dreamed about the future. 

Little whimpers rose from her throat. She pulled her mouth from his, her cheek brushing across his stubbly chin, its roughness sending more shocks through her. His grip loosened and she slid down his body until she stood on the lake bottom, pressed against him from head to toe. The huge bulge in his briefs made her feel a little faint. 

“Sweet Jesus,” he whispered as she nibbled on his jaw. She couldn’t help it; she wanted to eat him up. “You’re making me crazy. We can’t do this here.”

“Shh.” She didn’t want to talk. She wanted this all-consuming, crazy conflagration that she’d never even imagined before. Tugging at his shoulders, she rose on tiptoe, brushing her lips against his again. With a heartfelt groan, he gave in.

{ review } .
Hey, hey, now, this book is getting ready for you to read!
I originally posted this review in February with a preorder blast that Tasty Book Tours
put together. If you didn't preorder the book then, you'll want to now! This was such a fun 
read and I absolutely cannot wait for the rest of the series!

Jennifer Bernard first drew me in to her writing with those sexy firefighters she wrote about. I had only read the first 2 or 3 books, and then I had the next ones on hold via the virtual library, and my card expired, and well... I never read the rest of the series. But I do remember liking them, and liking her writing style.

So when this popped up, I knew I wanted to read it -- author I liked? Genre I liked? Home run (pun intended)..!

If you know anything about me, you know I love my sassy leading ladies. Lauren Layne writes them very well (Sophie, anyone?). Well, Sadie is pretty sassy, herself, and it just gets to Caleb Hart, now-minor league pitcher.

"You must be one of those crazy Catfish players."

"What clued you in? The uniform or the overuse of profanity?"

...Something sparked in her eyes, and her lips quirked. "Well, I guess it must be the profanity, since I don't see much in the way of a uniform." She glanced down his torso. He remembered he was bare-chested, having ditched his shirt.

"Yeah, well...had to let off a little steam."

"So that was you cussing up a storm? I thought I was about to get trampled like a barrel of grapes."

or what about...

"Fine. In the interests of moving on with our lives--you to your shower and probably a six-pack and a groupie..."

Holy RBI. This girl could certainly talk. Her face moved as she spoke, her eyes danced; every bit of her seemed alive and in motion.

Their first encounter comes with an elbow to the gut, and the subsequent have parts to do with Caleb needing to get on the clubs' good side. Sadie works for the town Mayor and the town has some issues with those naughty Catfish baseball players -- beer in pools stands out the most in my mind. When Sadie comes to the owner and manager with a petition for the team to move, he ends up handing the assignment over to Caleb -- once Minnesota Twins' great, now... a not-so-great who throws more home runs than strike outs.

What I liked most about the coupling of Sadie and Caleb is they are equals in most aspects. Both have crappier parts of their life; both give their all in everything they do; both have quick wit.

And they both have some major trust issues.

Caleb is a stand-up guy. As his mentor and boss points out, his career typically takes a major setback whenever family issues arise. His father is a cheat, and has spent time in jail. As such, Caleb has taken the roll of father-figure to his younger sister and twin-teenaged brothers. During the baseball season, his sister takes on the matriarchal role but goes to Caleb when needs arise. Caleb is the backbone of the family and is the financial checkbook. And as much as it pains him, he's the homestead of his father during this baseball season.

Sadie has been dealt a pretty icky card, courtesy of her ex. What was supposed to be a private birthday gift managed to hit social media hard and Sadie lost a lot of important contacts and credibility.

But everything happens for a reason.

Without the fallout, she'd have never searched for months for a job -- even a petty job -- eventually landing assistant to the mayor; working with the mayor lead to the petition which lead Sadie to the Catfish... which, of course, then leads to her meeting Caleb. And vice versa for Caleb. The minors may be a bit of a set-back in his career pathway, but it lead him to Sadie.

These two were super cute..! I liked how they played with each other and off of each other. I liked that one wasn't weak and one was super dominant. They were, as I stated above, equals in their relationship.

I'm excited to see where Jennifer takes the series! All you sport-romance fans, this is one you won't want to miss.

{ giveaway } .


  1. Thank you so much for hosting me on your blog and for totally getting Caleb and Sadie! LOL. Hugs, Jennifer!