Saturday, January 31, 2015

review || ONLY FOR HIM

Only For Him by Cristin Harber

Publisher: Mill Creek Press (2/24/2015)
Series: Only, book one
Genre: New Adult
Source: NetGalley
Purchase from || amazon | bn
*preorder for 0.99!

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Rating: ★★

release day blitz { PLAYING HOUSE }

Playing House release day

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Playing House by Donna Brown

Genre: Contemporary Romance (novella) 
Release Date: January 31, 2015 

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"Masters only did two seascapes before his hand was crushed."

David and Emma Thomas have reached the end of the road. Only one thing is preventing them from parting ways: a painting they bought on honeymoon. Priceless to both of them, the only solution seems to be to find the second of the elusive Masters' seascapes and each carry away a piece of the past.

Will an impromptu road trip set them free once and for all?

{ excerpt } . 

They had talked about David staying in the house - spare room, of course - until he could find something more permanent but in the end he couldn't bear it. The things you stopped noticing after fifteen years - sometimes, conversely, the very things that had helped you fall in love in the first place - were suddenly amplified. The way she always hummed when she made coffee in the morning, whatever her mood. The scent of her moisturiser. The way she chewed her pencil end, even though she admitted it was a habit that drove her crazy when others did it.

You don't know what you've got until it's gone…

Or almost gone. Being reminded every day of what he was about to lose would have been too much to bear. Not that he would call the current circumstances particularly bearable.

Instead, he had rented a small studio flat a ten minute walk away. He could easily have afforded something bigger and he certainly could have afforded something less sparsely furnished but he didn't want a new home right now. He just wanted somewhere to retreat and lick his wounds.

Privately he admitted to himself that the feeling of temporariness helped perpetuate the charade: perhaps it wasn't all quite over. He knew he was kidding himself. He was not the kind of man to give up without a fight and he believed he had fought hard for Emma. She just didn't want him any more.

As he reached the building and entered the lobby, he wondered if he should just let her go now. The painting? She could have it. Who needed a reminder of all the things they'd never have again? She had transformed his life over the last fifteen years. A canvas, however stunning, was a poor substitute.

In his 'kitchenette' - one counter, a sink and a toaster and kettle - he poured a glass of whisky, took a mouthful and then shook his head and emptied the rest of the glass down the sink. He was drinking too much. It wasn't habitual but it could easily become so. Whisky - even damn good whisky - was even less of a substitute for Emma than a Masters' seascape.

He would call her in the morning, he decided. She could have the painting. Forget the auction. Forget the road trip.

If you love someone set them free…

She wouldn't come back to him, he suddenly knew that. And perhaps it would indeed mean she never had been his, but oddly he was cheered by this thought. Nobody could own someone as free as Emma. She was born to soar. He had always believed they could soar together and the realisation that he had been wrong crushed his heart in a vice of pain. She had given him so much in the last fifteen years, made so many sacrifices. This would be his final opportunity to give Emma something she really wanted: her freedom. After everything he had put her through, it would be the very least he could offer.

  { teasers } . 

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about Donna || Donna is a longtime book lover and sometime book reviewer and has devoured books from an early age. She writes short (or long) stories as and when inspiration hits and is married to fantasy author David M. Brown (Fezariu's Epiphany, A World Apart). She was also co-contributor to David's book, Man vs Cat, a humorous look at life with six rambunctious rescue cats.

Donna has lived in many different areas of the UK over the last 30-something years but has remained in Yorkshire for the past decade. She ardently disputes the misnomer that 'It's grim up north'. You can find Donna on Google+, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Goodreads, or visit her and her husband's shared blog: B-Lines and Felines.

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Courting Jealousy by Kimberly Dean

Publisher: Tiger Eye Productions (11/29/2014)

Series: Courting
Genre: Contemporary Erotica Novella
Source: FREE on Amazon
Grab a copy || amazon || add to goodreads

Rating: ★★

When Noelle hires an escort to accompany her to a charity event, it’s merely to show her ex that’s she’s moved on. Yet she gets more than she bargained for when Dane is assigned to accompany her. Tall, dark, and handsome, he knows how to arouse jealousy. He also knows how to arouse her!

{ review } .

You know how sometimes I say "I found a review that I was working on and never finished it"?

...yeah, the book that this one 'belongs in', COURTING TROUBLE, is one of those books. I really enjoyed COURTING TROUBLE, so I promise to get you the full-out review at some point in my busy life (I'd do it now, but after I sling this baby out, I'm headed to bed -- I've been up for 20 hours and need my sleep).

This novella is an extremely short (and I put an extreme emphasis on extremely) novella that essentially takes place in the span of 30 minutes (yes, Dane, I'm giving you some time, but we all know guys don't need that much time...).

Noelle hires an escort to make her ex jealous as an event. She doesn't expect to be ridiculously attracted to the man. He plays his part well... almost too well.

The thing is, Dane is attracted to Noelle, too. He doesn't date clients, he doesn't sleep with clients, but he wants to make a brief exception for Noelle.

The only part that had me really rolling my eyes was the whole forgetting her ex's name thing. But...

While reading, I'd like to add, I rolled my eyes often at the quickness of the emotion. Obviously it's going to move fast -- but seriously, in that time frame? But after I put it down, I sat back and reflected.

This little blurb of a book takes place during a minute part of the prologue of COURTING TROUBLE. Noelle and Dane aren't even secondary characters in TROUBLE -- but Sienna, although not named, makes her appearance (I even went back to TROUBLE to see if she ran into this couple in the prologue).

So while it was short and a bit unbelievable, the lines a tad corny...

I forgave it because it was like a side-flash in a soap opera.

Forgiveness given.

Friday, January 30, 2015

review || JUSTICE MINE { blog tour }

Justice Mine by Megan Mitcham

Publisher: Megan Mitcham (10/1/2014)
Series: Base Branch, book 2
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Buy from || amazon | bn || add to goodreads

Rating: ★★

For justice. For country. For love.

After witnessing her friend’s sexual assault, seven year senior, Magdalena Wells escapes an attack with a few bruises and a thousand questions. As a journalist in practice, if not in pay, Mags vows to utilize the skills she mastered in the Democratic Republic of Congo and answer every single one, just as soon as she gets the hell out of town.

Law Pierce’s aim is rest and relaxation after two years undercover in South Africa on an extended Base Branch mission, but restlessness puts him in trouble’s path. As a servant of justice, Law will do everything in his power to keep trouble safe. The fact that trouble’s petite stature and luscious curves stir his every primal instinct is a massive inconvenience he struggles to ignore.

Together Magdalena and Law uncover a web of corruption and dirty lies that could set their country’s top official ablaze, if the inferno doesn’t consume them first.

about Megan || Megan was born and raised among the live oaks and shrimp boats of the Mississippi Gulf Coast, where her enormous family still calls home. She attended college at the University of Southern Mississippi where she received a bachelor's degree in curriculum, instruction, and special education. For several years Megan worked as a teacher in Mississippi. She married and moved to South Carolina and worked for an international non-profit organization as an instructor and co-director.

In 2009 Megan fell in love with books. Until then, books had been a source for research or the topic of tests. But one day she read Mercy by Julie Garwood. And Oh Mercy, she was hooked!

Megan lives in Southern Arkansas where she pens sizzling suspense novels.
connect with Megan || website | facebook | twitter | goodreads

{  review } .

Typically when I read a series, I like the first book I read best – Cristin Harber’s Titan books? SAVAGE SECRETS was book one for me, and I’m incredibly attached to Rocco and Cat (…Mia and Winters too, but shhh). I tend to get super attached to the first characters I read, and look for them at every turn in the following books.
Yes, I looked for Baine and Sloan in JUSTICE MINE…

…but I think Law and Mags have my heart.
We first met Law as Baine’s “butler” in ENEMY MINE – he went by the prim name of Lawrence and held himself just. So.

But Sloan figured there was more to him than met the eye, and sure enough…
Lawrence the butler is really Law the Base Branch agent and best friend/partner of Baine. When we last saw Law in ENEMY MINE, he wasn’t exactly Team Baine – and that is where we pick up in JUSTICE MINE.

Baine has asked Law to stand by his side when he marries Sloan, but after seeing him toe that black and white/gray line too close for his comfort, Law needs to reassess things. He’s afraid that the friend he thought he knew so well, is really a bit more distant than he figured him for.
For most of the first chapter, the reader gets a look into a brooding Law's mind -- but you don't know exactly what it is he's so pissed about. There are little hints, and then there's the big one:
[show spoiler]

Baine and Sloan leave, leaving the McCord house and estate to Law – regardless, it is the place Law stays when they’re not on missions, but he does have a flat of his own. Content to be in the big estate by his lonesome, he does not expect Baine’s ‘sister’ to come barreling into the house. Here he thought he’d get quiet to calm his mind, and instead he gets the one person he has successfully avoided since becoming friends with Baine -- and she brings a couple bad guys in her wake.

These two were a hoot to watch. She’s a sass with a quick mouth; he flirts extremely easily with her – which I found surprising in the beginning considering his dark mood.
Her quick, sassy mouth spews what it thinks – her mind is equally spunky (yes, she manages to put a lid on the outbursts).
Apparently the man had a problem with clothing. He rose from the beastly machine, showcasing the most adulterating display of masculinity she’d ever seen in real life.
In just 24 short hours, they go from strangers (granted, have to give the man credit, Law has been lusting after Mags for quite some time) to serious kissing buddies.

As they go through the motions of taking down a pretty significant sex ring, they (of course) fall for one another -- but again, Law was already half there, silly man.

While I loved Baine and his promises to Sloan, Law, with his dark moods and honest words, stole my heart. He swears to Mags he'll never abandon her, and he loves her as she is -- nosey journalist, quirky mind, freckled face, foul mouth, and all.

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{ prologue reveal } UNDENIABLE LOVE

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Tristan Williams thought the path of his life was on the right journey. He had a successful career, good looks, and a carefree lifestyle. One conversation changed Tristan’s way of thinking forever as his father presented him with a bottle, representing his journey and forcing unwanted thoughts of a lasting relationship to the surface. Running from the fear of commitment, he pushed away the only woman he ever had feelings for and turned to the one girl he knew he didn’t love.

Ryn Webster was finally putting her past behind her. Moving to Texas and concentrating on the success of her own company, she had her life almost where she wanted it. One thing was missing though…love. She thought she had found love with Tristan until he casted her aside.

After being hurt by Tristan, Ryn does whatever she can to push him from her heart, even if it means being with a man she doesn’t love.

Regardless of the path one thinks they are on, the journey of life can cause unexpected turns, altering the planned course. Will Tristan and Ryn’s bottle be tossed about, lost in the rocky waves of life? Or will calm seas prevail to help Tristan and Ryn finally find their journey of love…together?

{ prologue reveal } !

I had been sitting on the beach for the last hour just staring out at the black ocean. I tipped the beer bottle back and drank the last of my beer.
“Well hell. Looks like I have to go back,” I said as I got up and brushed the sand off my pants. I turned and looked back at the house. My brother Lark and his new wife, Azurdee had left two hours ago for their honeymoon and I couldn’t take watching Ryn another second. 
I sucked in a deep breath of salty air and slowly let it out. My phone went off and I pulled it out of my pocket. I let out a deep breath when I saw it was Liberty.
Liberty: Just letting you know I’m thinking about you. If you want me to join you I’ll come down. Just text me back and I’ll be there.
Me: I think I just need some time to think, Liberty. We need this time apart.
Liberty: I didn’t mean to push you. I’m always pushing you, I know. I just really wanted to see your parents and would have loved to have seen the wedding but I understand you have your reasons for going alone. Things haven’t been so great with us lately. I’ll work on that. Promise.
Me: We’ll talk when I get back to Austin.
Liberty: Okay. I love you, Tristan.
I let out a sigh and shook my head. I’ve never told Liberty I loved her. I wasn’t sure anymore how I felt about her. We had been on and again and off again so many times I was beginning to lose count. Currently, we were off. All she had been doing is pushing an engagement ever since she found out Lark and Azurdee were getting married. When I thought of my future I didn’t see Liberty. I only saw ... Ryn. And that scared the piss out of me. 
I turned my phone to silent and shoved it in my pocket. I started heading back to the house and began putting on my game face. The one I’d been wearing for the last ten months. The one where everyone thought I was happy, but deep down inside I was the unhappiest I’d ever been in my life. 
I walked up the stairs to the deck and the first person I saw was Ryn. She was leaning against the railing with her head back and her eyes closed. There was no one else out here. 
She looked tired. I smiled when I thought about what I had overheard earlier when Mom and Azurdee’s best friend, Jessie, were talking. Ryn had taken a two-week vacation and was renting a house on the beach just two houses down from here. I already began planning ways to ‘run in to her’ while we were both here. 
She hadn’t talked to me in over ten months. No matter how many times I called and left her messages begging her to call me, she never would. 
Her cell phone rang and she quickly answered it. I walked around to the other side of the deck and sat down to where she couldn’t see me. 
“Hey, Dodge. Are you on your way? Yes. I thought I could, but I can’t. I need you.” 
Dodge? Who the fuck is Dodge? 
She laughed at something he said and then she let out a sigh. “Well, considering I still need my RFB, I’d say yes ... it’s been a sucky last three days.” 
I peeked around the corner and saw her smiling. She reached her hand up and began playing with her nipple. 
What the fuck? 
“That sounds like heaven. Yes. I’m going to need it a lot. I don’t know, you’d think after all this time you’d have been able to fuck him out of my head and heart. Maybe you’re not as good as you think you are?” 
My mouth dropped open and I quickly turned back and stared out in the night sky. 
She laughed again and said, “I’m still at the wedding. Yes. It was hard to see him. I don’t know. Maybe, I’ve thought about that. Yes. I realize I only use you for sex to forget about Tristan, but maybe I’m falling for you and just want your company. You ever think of that?” 
My heart started beating faster and I wanted to pound this asshole’s head in.She let out a sigh and said, “Okay. I’ll see you then. Oh trust me. I’ll be waiting and I will most certainly be ready for you. Yes naked. Hey, Dodge? Hurry please. I need to be fucked in a bad way. Bye.” 
She let out a sigh and then I swore I heard her crying. I slowly stood. She was looking out toward the ocean. Her shoulders were moving up and down and when I saw her wipe away her tears, my knees about buckled out from underneath me. 
I started making my way toward her. I didn’t want to walk up on her crying, so I cleared my throat and asked, “May I join you?” 
She quickly wiped her tears away and looked the other way. “It’s your house,” she whispered. 
“How have you been, Ryn?” 
She turned and looked at me. If looks could kill, I’d be on the floor right now. “You’ve ignored me for three days and now you ask how I’ve been?” 
I shrugged my shoulders and said, “I wasn’t sure you wanted to talk to me.” She let out a small laugh. 
“Usually people attempt to talk to a person before they make that assumption.” 
“Well, considering I’ve been calling you for months, and you ignore my calls—” She took a step back and shook her head. 
A look of hurt moved across Ryn’s face as she slowly said, “You’re seeing ... another ... girl.” 
“It’s not like that. We are kind of off and on. I mean ... I’m not seeing her right now.” She rolled her eyes before looking into mine. 
“Do you have any idea how much you hurt me?” 
My heart felt like it was physically hurting as I swallowed and said, “I just thought ... I wasn’t planning on—” I looked away and then back into her eyes. “I thought you just wanted to have fun, Ryn. Then you started acting different and I started having these feelings and ... I was confused.” 
Anger replaced the hurt in her eyes. “The only thing that confused you is why you brought the wrong girl to meet mom and dad.” 
She turned and began walking into the house. I wanted to call out for her but I couldn’t. My heart felt like it was squeezing in my chest as I stood there and listened to her retreating footsteps. 

I turned and stared out at the dark ocean again. That’s what my heart felt like.
 A dark deep sea of ... darkness.

Kelly Elliott is married to a wonderful Texas cowboy who has a knack for making her laugh almost daily and supports her crazy ideas and dreams for some unknown reason...he claims it's because he loves her!
She’s also a mom to an amazing daughter who is constantly asking for something to eat while her fingers move like mad on her cell phone sending out what is sure to be another very important text message.
In her spare time she loves to sit in her small corner overlooking the Texas hill country and write.

One of her favorite things to do is go for hikes around her property with Gus....her chocolate lab and the other man in her life, and Rose, her golden retriever. When Kelly is not outside helping the hubby haul brush, move rocks or whatever fun chore he has in store for her that day, you’ll find her inside reading, writing or watching HGTV.

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MAYBE ME { cover reveal }

We're so excited to reveal the cover for MAYBE ME by Amber Hart! Maybe Me releases this fall from Kensington Teen! 

maybe me-2
About MAYBE ME: A sliver of a second is all it takes. Maria Reyes knows what it means to come from nothing. Escaping Cuba, the States have given Maria new dreams. Like graduating high school. Going to college. Making something of herself. Forgetting a past that always seems to creep up on her family. But mostly, staying out of trouble. Which is why falling for Hale is out of the question. An unguarded moment, a simple mistake. Hale Watson is a flash of a second away from being locked up for good. With a rap sheet longer than the list of homes he comes from, Hale has one more shot at making things right. Graduate senior year. Don’t mess up. Don’t get caught. That’s the plan. Until he meets Maria. And everything changes.

Add MAYBE ME to Goodreads here
You can also preorder it below (more retailers coming soon)!

MAYBE ME is the third book in the Before & After series, but it can be read as a standalone! You can find out more about BEFORE YOU and AFTER US here!

about Amber Hart || Amber Hart grew up in Orlando, Florida and Atlanta, Georgia. She now resides on the Florida coastline with family. When unable to find a book, she can be found writing, daydreaming, or with her toes in the sand. She's the author of BEFORE YOU, AFTER US, UNTIL YOU FIND ME, and sequel to UNTIL YOU FIND ME (untitled as of yet). Represented by Beth Miller of Writers House.

release day blitz || LOYALTY AND LIES

Loyalty and Lies Release Day


Loyalty and Lies by LA Cotton

Series: Chastity Falls, book 1  
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance 
Release Date: January 2015 

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Eighteen-year-old Savanah Parry just moved three thousand miles across state to escape. The memories…the whispers…the pain.

Chastity Falls Academy is supposed to be her fresh start; her salvation. And when Ana meets mysterious Jackson, she begins to think it is. She hasn’t smiled in almost sixteen months; not since the night her life changed forever, and despite her guilt…her loyalty, Ana can’t deny that Jackson is breathing life back into her. With Jackson by her side, Ana wants to believe she can heal and move on. But she isn’t the only one living a lie, and the small private Academy has secrets of its own. All is not what it seems, and Ana is about to find herself in a tangled web of lies; fighting for survival, again.

Loyalties will be tested, lies will be told. Welcome to Chastity Falls.

{ excerpt } .

Gardner's class was nothing compared to the torture of sitting so close to Jackson in Shakespeare. After his warning to stay away from him, I thought he might pick an alternative seat, but that didn't happen. Instead, he brushed straight passed me, dropped into his usual chair and acted as if nothing had happened. I had to fight back the urge to ask him why he had told me to stay away from me. I mean, it wasn't like we hung out. There had been coffee at the shifty sea front hut…once, and then the embarrassing sprained-ankle-in-the-storm incident.

“Today, class, I want us to look at the character Iago…” Professor Shacks’ voice echoed around the small room. “Iago is the voice whispering in Othello’s ear, playing to Othello’s own paranoia and insecurities around his relationship with Desdemona. Of course, Othello trusts Iago implicitly, why wouldn’t he trust his long serving friend and lieutenant? A fact that Iago uses to his own advantage…”

Jackson shuffled next to me, and then quickly dropped a white note onto my desk. What now? I sighed, feeling frustrated at his mixed signals.

How’s the ankle?

Okay thanks

I balled up the note and tossed it onto his desk, watching him through the corner of my eye. A slight smirk played on his lips, and it was obvious he was aware I was pissed at him. He started scribbling a reply, which landed in front of me seconds later.

I’ve heard coffee (or a banana shake) can work wonders for a sprained ankle… healing properties or something.

I scowled at his slightly scruffy handwriting wondering what game he was trying to play with me.

Thanks. I’ll make sure I have a banana shake before bed

Feeling pleased with myself, I held out the note for him and he plucked it out of my hand, silently laughing when his eyes scanned the words.

How about a shake before bed… with me?

My eyes blinked. And blinked again, feeling the heat of embarrassment wash over my face. Was he flirting with me? I felt thirteen all over again. Mikey Crand used to send me love notes in Biology and me and my friend Lacey would giggle over them. Feeling brave, I handed him my reply.

Are you inviting me for a shake? Or to bed?

Jackson’s eyes widened and he shuffled slightly in his seat. Take that mister confusing, I thought, pleased with myself.

Are you saying yes?

I inwardly groaned. Jackson: one, Ana: zero. I couldn’t keep this up without drifting into territory that terrified me. Jackson was the first guy—the only guy—that made me smile… made my stomach flutter… made me feel anything since Danny. It wasn’t the plan, not what I ran to CFA to find, but somehow I had found it. Found something—someone—that made me feel again. Was that enough to try and get to the bottom of whatever was going on with Jackson? Of why he had warned me to stay away?

To the shake… maybe

Meet me round back five minutes after class

I was heading for a one-way trip into purgatory, because as I discreetly watched Jackson out the corner of my eye I knew. Knew there would be no way I could walk away. Right or wrong, sensible or stupid, he had awoken a part of me that I thought I would never find again…and I couldn’t just give that up. Not for all the warnings in the world.


Ninety-minutes later, I was sitting in Black’s suffering some kind of post-Jackson whiplash.

“I’m surprised you asked me for coffee again.” I slurped up the thick banana shake.

Jackson watched me, his eyes were more the color of the bluey-green ocean today, than their usual shade. “Actually, I invited you for a shake.” He quipped back.

I tried broaching the subject during the ride to Black’s, but he just shrugged me off, talking about the weather. The freaking weather. I was done with his evasion techniques. “After you warned me to stay away from you the other night?”

He placed his mug back on its plate and sighed. I watched, captivated, as he ran his hand through his messy dark hair, the longer strands falling back into place, a five ‘o’clock shadow cloaking his jaw. “About that… I may have been a little hasty.”


“See the thing is…” His eyes held mine, smoldering at me, pleading with me. “I’m not sure I can stay away from you.”

My lips moved to say something but nothing came out. Jackson watched me intently and I gulped. It felt like he was willing me to agree, to accept that there was a reason we should stay away from each other, but to ignore it. And I got the feeling it was a no questions asked kind of arrangement.

“It’d be better for you… for us, if you stay away from me, Ana. But I don’t want you to. I’m too selfish to walk away.”


Jackson cut me off. “No questions. That’s the deal. We spend time together, get to know each other, but you can’t ask any of the questions I know you have swimming round in that pretty little head of yours.”

“Okay, but-”

His hand found mine across the booth, and his fingers grazed my knuckles. “No questions. That’s just the way it has to be for now.”

I nodded. Unsure what I was agreeing to.

“You won’t regret it Ana Parry, I promise.”

{ teasers } .



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about LA Cotton || Author of NA Contemporary Romance, L. A. Cotton loves writing about those first looks, first kisses, and happily ever afters.

A wearer-of-many-hats, L.A juggles being a full-time mum to two little people with two part-time jobs and college. In her spare time (and when she’s not camped out in front of the laptop) you’ll most likely find her immersed in a book, escaping the chaos that is life.

Loyalty and Lies, is book one in her NA college series: Chastity Falls.


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Thursday, January 29, 2015

review || ENEMY MINE

Enemy Mine by Megan Mitcham

Publisher: Megan Mitcham (10/1/2014)
Series: Base Branch, book 1
Genres: Romantic Suspense
Source: Xpresso Book Tours/Author
Buy from || amazon | bn || add to goodreads

Rating: ★★

When friends become enemies and enemies become lovers.

Born in the blood of Sierra Leone's Civil War, enslaved, then sold to the US as an orphan, Base Branch operative Sloan Harris is emotionally dead and driven by vengeance. With no soul to give, her body becomes the bargaining chip to infiltrate a warlord's inner circle. The man called The Devil killed her family and helped destroy a region.

As son of the warlord, Baine Kendrick will happily use Sloan's body if it expedites his father's demise. Yet, he is wholly unprepared for the possessive and protective emotions she provokes. Maybe it’s the flashes of memory … two forgotten children drawing in the dirt beneath the boabab tree… But he fears there is more at stake than his life.

In the Devil's den with Baine by her side, Sloan braves certain death and discovers a spirit for living.

about Megan || Megan was born and raised among the live oaks and shrimp boats of the Mississippi Gulf Coast, where her enormous family still calls home. She attended college at the University of Southern Mississippi where she received a bachelor's degree in curriculum, instruction, and special education. For several years Megan worked as a teacher in Mississippi. She married and moved to South Carolina and worked for an international non-profit organization as an instructor and co-director.

In 2009 Megan fell in love with books. Until then, books had been a source for research or the topic of tests. But one day she read Mercy by Julie Garwood. And Oh Mercy, she was hooked!

Megan lives in Southern Arkansas where she pens sizzling suspense novels.

connect with Megan || website | facebook | twitter | goodreads

{ review } .

What a way to be introduced to a series.

Sloan and Baine... two people with secrets and lives that are very much 'don't know, don't tell' who knew one another once upon a time -- and while they haven't seen each other in more years than will fit on either's hands, their minds have thought about the other a time or two.

Sloan, once upon a time, went by the name Sia. When a dangerous man came to her school when she was five, her whole world was upended. Eventually, she made it stateside, where she was adopted and became Sloan Harris. Finally, she felt like she belonged again -- until they became pregnant and again, she was alone in the world.

Baine's father is a terrible man -- one he wants nothing to do with. But after watching him kill not only his mother, but take the lives of other innocents, Baine knows better than to disobey... for lack of a better term. As heir, he's due to take over his father's reign but Baine has other ideas.

When Sloan is given an assignment, she knows the man she's needed to take out -- and it kills her. 

No, she hasn't seen her childhood friend in ages, but if it's true that he is his father's secondhandman, she will put her country and her sense of right or wrong to the forefront, and ignore her feelings.

...she doesn't expect all that comes after.

It kills Baine to hurt her, but he can't let it be known he knows this escort being brought in to his father's company. There were instances in Baine's thoughts that you knew that he knew who she was... but then other times you thought maybe he was indeed clueless. 

The first true clue that he knows who she is, is said in almost an off-handed comment that could mean a miriad of things.
"I can't stop myself from caring about you."
And then there is:
"Did it ever occur to you," he whispered, "that I need to rescue you?" 
...but when he talked to Sloan about his childhood friend, all doubts vanished -- at least for the reader.
“I used to play under a tree like that,” he said, raising his arm to a stand of three scraggy, leafless barks, “with my best friend, for hours and hours at a time. The thing was base for tag, a fort, a castle, the bad guy we slew.”
Sloan smiled even as tears fell hot on her cheeks.  
He continued. “Every time I see a tree like that I smile and wonder where in the world she is? How she’s doing? If I’ll ever see her again?”  
Baine coughed and his voice wavered. “It was nearly twenty-two years ago. That’s stupid right, to think about someone from your youth when you’ve both probably changed so much?”  
She pulled in a ragged breath. “No. Not if they made you happy. Not if the memory of them still does."
Does she figure it out? Or will it take a little bit more...?

I really enjoyed watching these two -- battle of wits doesn't even begin to talk about these two. He's a smartass with his father, but extremely careful around her. She's extremely strong, mentally and physically, but her one true weakness is Baine. She has trust issues, but they don't play too much into the story.

Baine and Sloan... oh, how I loved them. So much so that while I loved learning about Lawrence's true identity... reading his story had a bit of me wanting to read more about Baine and Sloan -- but no worries, Lawrence's story is equally good... 

...if not a little better.

And Ryan? Mmmhm, Mr. Noble, I can't wait to watch you fall, too.

{ giveaway } .

I'm giving away ONE copy of ENEMY MINE.