Thursday, May 30, 2019

Review: Sweet on the Cowboy (The Draegers of Last Stand, Texas Book 1) by Sasha Summers

If you can't stand the heat...

Lam Draeger’s deep wounds from the death of his young son and his subsequent divorce were still healing when he was saddled with his running his family’s cattle and rodeo stock ranch and the responsibility of raising his siblings and keeping them out of trouble. His every moment is devoted to running the ranch and business smoothly. He’s had no time to mourn his many losses or try to rebuild his personal life. And romance? Out of the question, no matter how sweet the temptation.

...don't fall in love in the kitchen

Single mom Gwen Hobbs is right back where she swore she’d never be – cooking in the kitchen at the Draeger ranch just like her mom before her. But since her fiance and the father of her daughters walked out on her, taking all their savings with him, she’s forced to be practical. So she vows to ignore the attraction that hums between her and Lam and to stop dreaming of becoming a chef. But when Lam suggests she audition for a cooking competition, Gwen realizes that not all her dreams are out of reach, and her growing hopes extend far beyond a professionally tricked-out kitchen.

My Review:

A wonderful start to a new series.

This book is about two people, Gwen and Lam, who are brought together and discover they needed each other more than they imagined.  They just didn’t know it at the time.  Both have suffered at the hands of fate and deserve a new chapter in life.  After Gwen’s fiancĂ© leaves her and the twin girls, she returns to Last Stand, Texas, and begins cooking at the Draeger’s ranch, where her mother works.  Lam runs the ranch and still in pain over his divorce and son’s death.  He stays busy and has no time for much of anything, especially a new relationship.  But, fate has a way of working things like this out when you least expect it.

Gwen and Lam had really good chemistry and I enjoyed seeing them get their happily ever after.  I thoroughly enjoyed the beginning of this promising new series.  I look forward to reading the rest of the books in this series.


Friday, May 17, 2019

Review: Jenna by Barbara Hannay

Can she keep a safe distance?

Jenna Matthews is a city girl, no question. Despite a childhood spent in the Outback, she's committed to her fast-paced life and the competitive world of corporate law. When her best friend asks her to be bridesmaid, Jenna finds herself in Wirralong and wildly attracted to the best man. A fling? Why not?

Dangerously sexy Sam Twist runs his vast family sheep property and is as keen as Jenna to keep their relationship at fling status. Then the authorities turn up on his door step and Jenna jumps in to help despite Sam’s protests.

She soon learns that after years of drought, there are others in the district who need her skills. Her dilemma? Spending too much time around Sam is perilous. He could rob a girl of her heart. 

My Review: 

Jenna is a hard working lawyer who attends the wedding of her best friend in Wirralong, a town known for being a wedding destination in Australia, where she hooks up with Sam, the groom’s brother, after the wedding.  She thought it would be just one night and then she would be on her way back to the city, but it turns out Jenna’s advice was needed to help the ranchers fight a mining company who has cut off access to their livestock.  No one knows about Jenna’s time spent in the outback, but when Sam figures she is hiding something and she finally tells him, it only brings them closer.   

Sam is a committed bachelor.  He has no plans of ever settling down and getting married.  He is happy spending time with women.  Once he is through with them, he moves on.  But, there is something about Jenna that has piqued his interest.  There is more to her story than she lets people know.  She plays tough and loves her city life, but deep inside there is a country girl waiting to come back out.  

I enjoyed this book.  Jenna and Sam seemed to fight their true feelings for a while, but when they finally gave in, it was worth the wait.   I enjoyed the author’s descriptive writing.  I felt like I had been right there with the characters in Australia.  This book is part of a series, but all of the books can be read on their own.    

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Review: Light my Fire (The DeMarco Family Book 4) by Jane Graves

He was too hot to handle...and she couldn't resist the heat

Defense attorney Ethan Milner is well-paid for his ability to charm a jury while ruthlessly slashing the prosecution. He’s living life in the fast lane, until he’s slapped with a reckless driving charge and sentenced to 40 hours of community service on a crime watch patrol. Now he’s under the thumb of the chairman of the city’s crime watch council – a no-nonsense woman determined to make him pay his debt to society.

Sandy DeMarco is familiar with Ethan’s professional character, as well as his notorious “bad boy” reputation with women. Still, when her quiet neighborhood is shaken by a brutal murder and an employee of hers becomes the prime suspect, she knows the accused’s only hope is the man who will win at any cost. Working alongside Sandy, Ethan feels the spark of attraction that ignites into love – even as a killer burns to silence them both.

My Review:

The DeMarco Family series continues up with Sandy’s story; and it’s definitely my favorite of the series.

Ethan Milner is bad news according to Sandy’s brothers.  He is a ruthless defense attorney who has set free some of the criminals that Sandy’s brothers have arrested.  But, what no one knows is Ethan doesn’t really like helping the bad guys.  It’s all about money at his father’s law firm.  It tears him up inside every time he wins a case and a guilty person walks just because they had enough money to pay for a good lawyer.   

After a night of drinking and Ethan is arrested for reckless driving, he is sentenced to forty hours of community service.  He has to ride along with Sandy while she does her citizens on patrol in her neighborhood.  But, what neither of them expected was to come across a woman who had been murdered.  When one of Sandy’s employees, from her flower shop, is arrested for the crime, she will do anything to prove he is innocent.  Sandy asks Ethan to represent Josh and everything changes from there.  Ethan shows he does have a heart and Sandy starts to fall for him.  The story ends with a huge revelation of who the real murderer is.  All I can say is I didn’t see that coming. 

I read this book really fast.  The story was exciting and I was on the edge of my chair the entire time.  The DeMarco Family books are the only ones by this author that I have read, but if the rest of her books are this good, I will definitely be on the lookout for more.   Each book in this series can be read as a stand-alone, so it doesn’t matter where you start in the series.  They are all really good and intense like this one.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Review and Giveaway: In the Swim of Things by Tracie Banister


A sexy, sun-soaked tale about a tail-wearing girl who makes a lot of waves—perfect for fans of Lauren Layne, Meghan Quinn, and Christina Lauren. 

Ocean-loving Kyra Goodwin had to give up her dream of becoming the female Jacques Cousteau in order to take care of her father and brother, but being a mermaid at the Cape Cod Aquarium is pretty fintastic as far as alternative careers go. 

Of course, life as a half-fish/half-woman isn’t all sunken treasure and Ariel twirls. Kyra has to deal with perpetually pruney fingers, eyes irritated by saltwater, and bratty kids on the daily, plus her glam alter ego can make dating really weird. (So many men have pervy siren-of-the-sea fantasies!) When she meets hunky surfer Cade, and he’s into her without knowing what she does for a living, Kyra thinks she’s finally won the romance lottery. 

Unfortunately, Kyra’s plans for a carefree summer of catching waves with her new boyfriend run aground when Sea Star Beach, a place that holds great sentimental value for her, is taken over by a big-city developer who wants to build an exclusive resort. Kyra’s crusade to save her beloved beach threatens both her job and her relationship with Cade as does her growing closeness with her irresistibly broody merwrangler, Declan, whose precocious daughter is intent on playing matchmaker.

When a new family drama arises just as Kyra receives an offer that would turn her greatest desire into reality, she’s torn. Will she do what’s expected of her, or dive in and follow her heart?


I would start by saying this is a mermazingly good read, but I know all the mermaid puns will probably be used in a lot of reviews for this book.  So, I will say it is just amazing and so much fun.  And, just look at the cover.  It’s gorgeous.  This is a perfect book to read on your summer vacation, or even if you’re just dreaming of a vacation. 

Kyra, a professional mermaid at the Cape Cod Aquarium, and her friends really took me on a journey as they protested against a luxury hotel developer who plans to build on their favorite beach and make it exclusive to hotel guests only.  The people of Chaucer will no longer have access to the beach that holds so many of their memories.  Along the way, Kyra discovers her true love. 

I really can’t say enough good things about this book.  All of the characters were fun and I would love to see more about them.  I got so wrapped up in the story, I found myself staying up way later than I usually do and reading when I should have been cooking or cleaning (I shouldn’t say this, but I did burn one dinner).  The way this book wrapped up caught me by surprise.  It is definitely the sign of a very talented writing imagination.  I highly recommend this book if you are looking for something fun to read this summer. 




Purchase a copy of In the Swim of Things during the Release Blitz (May 15th - May 31st, 2019) and you could win an incredible prize pack inspired by the book’s mermaid heroine and its beachy setting in Cape Cod. People who purchased In the Swim of Things during the pre-order period are also eligible for the giveaway!

This prize pack includes: 

You’ve Mermaid My Day Pedestal Candle Holder

3-Wick Salted Ocean Air Candle

Mermaid Squad Gift Set, inc. Travel-Sized At The Beach Ultra Shea Body Cream & Shower Gel & Beautiful Day PocketBac Hand Sanitizer

Mermaid Stemless Wine Glass with Inscription “It’s Okay to Drink Like a Fish If You’re a Mermaid”

Mermaid Tribe Sea Glass Necklace by Lita Sea Glass Jewelry (seafoam-colored 
sea glass on 18” sterling silver chain) 

Mermaid Key Chain/Purse Charm (antique gold mermaid pendant with stunning beads and a sassy tassel)

Bath & Body Works Shea-Infused Mermaid Socks Mermaids in Paradise:

An Artist’s Coloring Book 

Crayola Colored Pencils (36 premium quality pencils)

To enter this giveaway, e-mail Tracie Banister at with your proof of purchase. Entries will be accepted until 11:59PM Eastern US time on Friday, May 31st when a winner will be selected via random drawing. This is an international giveaway, so anyone who buys In the Swim of Things within the allotted time frame is eligible to win. Good luck


An avid reader and writer, Tracie Banister has been scribbling stories since she was a child, most of them featuring feisty heroines with complicated love lives like her favorite fictional protagonist Scarlett O'Hara. Her work was first seen on the stage of her elementary school, where her 4th grade class performed an original holiday play she penned. (Like all good divas-in-the-making, she also starred in and tried to direct the production.)

Tracie’s dreams of authorial success were put on the backburner when she reached adulthood and discovered that she needed a "real" job in order to pay her bills. Her career as personal assistant to a local entrepreneur lasted for 12 years. When it ended, she decided to follow her bliss and dedicate herself to writing full-time. She is the proud winner of the 2017 Independent Press Award (Romantic Comedy) and a Bronze Medal in the 2017 Readers’ Favorite Awards (Chick Lit).

In the Swim of Things is Tracie’s sixth novel and thanks to this book, she can now check another occupation off her fantasy list. She has no doubt that writing about a mermaid is much easier than actually being one!


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