BLOG TOUR: Her Highland Rogue, by Violetta Rand (Wild Highland Guardian #1)

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Hi, there! Welcome to the first of many pieces of bookish news today 🙂 This blog tour for Her Highland Rogue, by Violetta Rand, is hosted by Bewitched Book Tours!

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Her Highland Rogue

by Violetta Rand

Genre: Historical romance, Highlander

Publisher: Random House/Loveswept

Date of Publication: June 21th, 2016

ASIN: B00XG9BWZE

170 pages

Cover Artist: Random House

 summary

Errol MacRae’s days of gallivanting across the Highlands are nearing an end. His father’s health has taken a turn for the worse, and rumors are swirling that the crown intends to transfer ancient lands into the hands of the MacKenzies, the clan the MacRaes are sworn to defend. Errol expects to lead his men into battle soon. So he isn’t pleased when his father instead sends him to retrieve a beautiful flame-haired lass who has fled into the mountains.

 Orphaned as a young girl, Aileana vividly remembers how the MacRaes rescued her and welcomed her into their clan. For ten years, she has served them loyally—until the night she’s nearly despoiled by one of the laird’s captains. Aileana risks her life and her reputation to seek refuge in the snowcapped peaks of the Five Sisters, the one place that has always felt like home. But after the strong-armed, strong-willed Errol tracks her down in a blizzard, she finds herself tempted to risk something even more dangerous: her heart.

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purchase links

You can find Her Highland Rogue in ebook format only 🙂

Amazon     BN      Kobo

 excerpt

            Aileana opened her eyes, confused by her surroundings. She’d fled the MacRae stronghold after Broc cornered her in the kitchen, long after the other women had gone abovestairs to sleep. She’d stupidly volunteered to keep watch over the remaining men in the hall in case they required more bread and meat—or in Broc’s case, more ale. Once she’d refilled his cup, even leaving a full pitcher behind for the great beast to finish off, he stumbled after her, smelling of sweat and spirits, and drooling on her neck.

She’d known him nearly all her life—at least for the time she remembered being alive. Before her tenth year, she held no clear memories. The occasional flash of a face or spoken word, but nothing that could connect her to a family or place. So she wandered through life nameless, though the MacRae laird had offered to recognize her as part of his clan. But whenever she considered it, something inside her warned not to do it. For once ye denied your name, whether you knew it or not, your fate might change. And she didn’t want to lose her only chance at true happiness. Deep down, Aileana knew there was more to her existence than being a bastard.

That’s what half the women within the MacRae keep called her. Behind her back mostly, but sometimes directly if she was blamed for burning the bread or spilling wine.

She kicked off the fur covering her from neck-to-foot, cold air sending a chill down her body. A fire burned at the opening of the rock enclosure, and she padded over to it, desperate for warmth. She stared beyond the flames, the world outside covered in white. Winter had come early to Kintail. And only by God’s grace had she met a woman last night in the hills. How could she turn down an offer of hot stew and a pallet to sleep on? So she’d walked quietly with the stranger to her cave.

As soon as she finished eating and drained her cup of wine, sleep overwhelmed her. That’s all she remembered. And now she woke up alone. But there was a loaf of bread and a cup of milk on the table by her pallet, hopefully meant for her to eat. Her stomach growled with hunger.

“Good morning,” Aileana heard as she reached for the cup.

She turned and met the woman’s smile. “Thank ye for allowing me to stay here last night. I’m afraid I have nothing to offer you, no money or goods to trade.”

The woman joined her, picked up the loaf of bread, then tore it in half. “I don’t remember asking for payment, child.”

“But your generosity must be rewarded in some way.”

“Aye,” she agreed. “Your company will do nicely.”

Aileana took a bite and it melted in her mouth, as tasty as what she cooked every morning in the MacRae kitchens. “Whatever you wish,” she said. “I prefer staying here. I wasn’t prepared for the snow. If ye hadn’t found me, I’m afraid I would have perished in the cold.” Though she had a fur cloak and thick-soled boots, she hadn’t had time to gather anything else before she ran away.

The woman sat down. “My name is Sgùrr.”

“Aileana.”

The woman studied her in silence, her dark gaze wandering more than once to her hair. “Who is your father?”

Aileana took another sip of milk, then put the cup down on the table. The idea of admitting to a stranger that she had no family was as humiliating as what Broc had done to her. “I don’t know.”

“And why were you roaming the hills alone? Surely someone will miss ye?”

“Laird MacRae is my guardian.”

“Your mother has passed?”

“I’m afraid I know nothing about my birth.” She walked the couple feet to her pallet and picked up her cloak. “Eight years ago a MacRae guard found me in the forest, cold and hungry, close to death I’ve been told. He bundled me in a blanket and took me home with him. I’ve lived there ever since.”

“Has the laird been kind and generous?”

“Laird MacRae is not only kind, but treats me as his own daughter. A day never passes without him greeting me. Sometimes I wonder what would have become of me if the MacDonalds or MacLeods found me instead.”

The older woman nodded. “Don’t put much stock in the affairs of men. Clan feuds are the last thing a lass needs to worry about. ’Tis your heart and charitable acts that define your character.”

  the author

Raised in Corpus Christi, Texas, Violetta Rand spent her childhood reading, writing, and playing soccer. After meeting her husband in New England, they moved to Alaska where she studied environmental science and policy before attending graduate school. Violetta then spent nearly a decade working as a scientist, specializing in soil and water contamination and environmental assessments.

 Violetta still lives in Alaska and spends her days writing romance. When she’s not reading, writing, or editing, she enjoys time with her husband, pets, and friends. In her free time, she loves to hike, fish, and ride motorcycles and 4-wheelers.

 Website | Facebook | Twitter

 My opinion about this cover:

britney spears hot hot hot

That’s it, thanks for reading 🙂

assinatura

bewitching book tours host

 

BLOG TOUR: Forget Me Not, by Allison Whitmore

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Hello, there! Sorry, can I just have a minute of glory for being a champ and posting everyday this week? No, please, no applauses, haha! But darn, it feels good!

Anyway, the lovely people at Xpresso Book Tours prepared a tour for Forget Me Not, by Allison Whitmore, and I have the pleasure of having her over here today!! ❤ But first things first, haha!

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Forget Me Not

by Allison Whitmore

Publication date: September 14th, 2015

Genres: Historical, Romance, Young Adult

summary

Theodora “Teddi” Donovan and Calvin Wynne have always hated each other. They didn’t have a choice after Teddi’s bootlegger father killed Calvin’s and left them both orphaned. The scandal has fueled gossip in quiet, quaint Brookhurst, New York, for over a decade. When a friendship develops between them as teenagers, they are ridiculed and shunned by the strict society that dictates life in their town. As they grow older, friendship turns into love, and Teddi and Calvin have to choose between their future and the scepter of their past. Spanning continents and decades, Forget Me Not is a coming-of-age story about truth, self-reliance, and the freeing power of love.

goodreads iconbe our guest post

Now let’s speak with the mastermind behind Forget Me Not: Allison Whitmore!

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I asked Allison- Annelise, dear, we know you ALWAYS FOREVER AFTER ask authors about book backstage. Just give it to us!

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But this time I managed to be original! Instead of asking Allison to drop 5 juicy curiosities about Forget Me Not, I asked the next best thing: a playlist 😀 Oh, sorry. Never mind, now let’s take a look at those songs, shall we?

Top 10 songs to listen while reading Forget Me Not

  •  Moonlight Serenade (Glenn Miller; vocals Frank Sinatra)
  • Imagination (Frank Sinatra)
  • Someone to Watch Over Me (Ella Fitzgerald)
  • Si Tu Vois Ma Mere (Sidney Bechet)
  • La Conga Blicoti by Josphine Baker
  • Love is Here to Stay (Frank Sinatra)
  • All the Things You Are (Ella Fitzgerald)
  • Embracabe You (Ella Fitzgerald)
  • In the Mood (Glenn Miller)
  • You’re a Sweetheart (Tommy Dorsey Band)

 I loved this vintage air from this playlist, Allison! Well done ❤ Thanks for taking the time to do this for us!!

purchase links

You can find Forget Me Not on both paperback and ebook 🙂

Amazon

the author

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Allison Whitmore started her first novel, Forget Me Not, one icy morning in her dorm room in Southampton, NY. After many years of teaching high school English, she came back to the novel to rewrite it. Allison comes from a family who loves history and enjoyed immersing herself in the research that brought Teddi and Calvin’s world to life. She lives in her hometown, Los Angeles, California.

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

giveaway

One lucky INTERNATIONAL winner will take home a $40 Amazon Gift Card!

To enter, just click here and good luck: GIVEAWAY!

 That’s it! Thanks for reading and thanks to Xpresso Book Tours for making this post possible and for all the support so far ❤

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xpresso book tours

COVER REVEAL: The Wicked North, by Gina Danna

Hi, there! Welcome to the second book cover reveal of the day, but now from Barclay Publicity. Behold the beautiful release from Gina Danna: The Wicked North!

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The Wicked North

by Gina Danna

Genre: Historical Romance

Publication date: June 26th, 2016

Publisher: The Bitter End Publishing

374 pages

summary

Bound by duty and honor to wear the Union blue, a Southern-born West Point officer fights his own desires and the need to protect the woman he abandoned, he disobeys his orders to find her, as the Army of the Potomac marches toward her family’s home near Richmond.

She has the guts and willpower to protect her home from the hated Yankee aggressors, but when that traitor to the South appears at her door, she’s torn between wanting to shoot him and to be held in his arms again. Can she forgive him for their past indiscretion or does she turn him in to be executed, a traitor to both sides?

In the summer of 1862, her family’s plantation becomes the personal battle ground between them as deceit, betrayal and passion ignite the flames of love and hate that burn brighter than the roar of the guns and rivers of blood surrounding them.

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purchase links

You can pre-order The Wicked North in both paperback and ebook formats!

Amazon

excerpt

Virginia, June 1862

Emma Silvers was not afraid to shoot Yankees.

She leveled the .57 caliber Enfield rifle at the line of blue coats standing before her porch at Rose Hill that evening. She counted ten men, fully armed and wielding torches. They reeked of wet wool, sweat and gun powder–a noxious mixture combined with the scent of pink roses surrounding the house. Bile rose in her throat. She swallowed hard.

The officer took a step forward. In the dim light, she couldn’t discern his face, though she saw him flinch as she pointed the muzzle at him.

“I want you off my land, now,” she demanded, her voice remarkably even despite her pounding heart. At twenty-two years and virtually alone, she knew one able-bodied man could easily overwhelm her. With no able men and few slaves remaining, she only had bravado left.

“Now, ma’am,” the Union officer began. He spoke like a gentleman, but, dressed in blue, he was an imposter as far as she was concerned.

Jeremiah, just behind her right shoulder, cocked the hammer on his rifle—a welcome sound to her ears. Good boy, Emma thought. If the Yankees didn’t believe she was a threat, she hoped the armed slave boy next to her got the message across. She wasn’t allowing any soldiers on her property again.

The rifle felt heavier by the minute, making her muscles ache, and she feared she’d drop it. The weapon was foreign to her hands, but as the war raged closer to her home, she learned to use it. She wasn’t very good at it, but, as close as the Yankees were, she was bound to hit one of them. She didn’t want to pull the trigger. The gun’s recoil would knock her off her feet, throwing her aim off. With so few bullets left, she’d hate to lose the shot.

The light streamed through the open front door across the officer as he stepped onto the porch. She saw his face and the nose of the gun slipped. Jack Fontaine, that good-for-nothing traitor! How dare he come here, especially after what had happened last summer? Rage took control and gave her the added strength to pull the muzzle up to his chest as she cocked the trigger.

“Emma, please,” he said softly. He looked at her the same way he had that night months ago, his green eyes glowing like emeralds in the light. She remembered those eyes, those mesmerizing emerald eyes. They were all hers the night she had lost her heart to him. The night he had betrayed her. Her anger flared. No. Not this time. Not again, she vowed. Gritting her teeth, Emma narrowed her gaze.

“Get away from me, Jack, or I swear to God, I’ll blow a hole through you and send you straight to hell!”

Inside the house, a babe wailed. Emma instinctively turned. Jack reached for her and she panicked, squeezing the trigger. The rifle exploded, throwing her backwards, pain shooting into her shoulder. But instead of falling, she found herself in Jack’s arms as they wrapped around her, shielding her back from the impact of the wooden floor.

The patrol stormed onto the porch and into the house. Lying in his embrace, his body shielding hers as his troops marched past them, Emma couldn’t breathe. Her eyes were wide open. She felt the heat of him around her. The scent of him invaded her senses. Warm, masculine, and spicy rolled into one. She fought the heat in her belly, but it was hard as his eyes locked onto hers, his lips only inches away.

She closed her eyes. Behind her, the wailing continued, and she heard the thud of soldiers’ boots inside. Her jaw tightened as she glared at him. “Get off me, Jack.”

the author

Gina Danna

A USA Today Bestselling author, Gina Danna was born in St. Louis, Missouri, and has spent the better part of her life reading. History has always been her love and she spent numerous hours devouring historical romance stories, always dreaming of writing one of her own. After years of writing historical academic papers to achieve her undergraduate and graduate degrees in History, and then for museum programs and exhibits, she found the time to write her own historical romantic fiction novels.
Now residing in Texas, under the supervision of her three dogs, she writes amid a library of research books, with her only true break away is to spend time with her other lifelong dream – her Arabian horse – with him, her muse can play.

Website / Facebook / Twitter

giveaway

There will be four INTERNATIONAL winners on this giveaway!

2 lucky winners will take home each a $10 Amazon Gift Card;

2 lucky winners will take home each a digital copy of their choice among Gina’s works!

No matter which prize you’re aiming for, to enter this giveaway, just click here and good luck: GIVEAWAY!

That’s it, thanks for reading 🙂

assinatura

barclay publicity

COVER REVEAL: Lavender in Bloom, by Lily Velez


Hi, there! It’s me again, with two cover reveals 🙂 I’m in love with today’s book cover and synopse for Lavender in Bloom, by Lily Velez ❤

Lavender in Bloom
by Lily Velez
Publication date: July 25th, 2016
Genres: Historical, Romance, Young Adult

summary

It’s the year 1802 in Avignon, France…

Noah Capet has spent most of his young life living simple and unvaried days in the hushed countryside of southern France. Quiet, reserved, and diffident, his preference for existing is to do so in solitude, keeping to himself both in town and on his family’s farm—a predilection that’s altogether disrupted when a newcomer to town by the name of Jeremie Perreault begins an unremitting quest to befriend him.

Jeremie is everything Noah is not. Charismatic and gregarious, he leaves a trail of charmed admirers in his wake wherever he goes. Expressive and idealistic, he talks without end about his deep love for old books and his spirited dream to one day travel the world on a literary pilgrimage.

Over the course of a single summer, the two form an unlikely friendship, but just as quickly as it develops, it soon entirely dissolves as they’re forced to face the truth of what has unexpectedly emerged between them.

Lavender in Bloom is a tender and tragic coming-of-age story about first love and self-discovery, and a poignant reminder that time is fleeting and always takes with it the choices we’re too afraid to make.

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Lily Velez has been writing stories since she was six years old. Not much has changed since then. She still prefers the written word and her overactive imagination over the ‘real world’ (though to be fair, her stories no longer feature talking dinosaurs). A graduate of Rollins College and a Florida native, when she’s not reading or writing, she spends most of her days wrangling up her pit bulls Noah and Luna, planning exciting travel adventures, and nursing her addiction to cheese. All this when she isn’t participating in the extreme sport known as napping. You can learn more about Lily and her books at http://www.lilyvelezbooks.com.

Website / Goodreads / Twitter

giveaway

One lucky INTERNATIONAL winner will take home a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

To enter, just click here and good luck: GIVEAWAY!

That’s it, thanks for reading! This cover reveal was hosted by Xpresso Book Tours and now there is one more book on my TBR, haha!

assinatura

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Threshold, from Jordan L. Hawk (Whyborne & Griffin #2)

Hello, good night! Once upon a time, in last April, Jess, from the Mud and Stars, I read Threshold, the second book in the Whyborne & Griffin series, by brilliant Jordan L. Hawk and only now I realized that I never posted my review for it. I’m a lost cause, seriously, haha! Anyway, better late than never, so here we go!

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the story

Whyborne has all the reasons to be happy. He’s been living with his lover, Griffin, for a while now in blissful peace. That is, until his fox of a father hires Griffin to investigate strange events on one of his coal mines, located at Threshold Mountain.

As strange happenings have been reported with a high frequency lately, Whyborne decides to accompany Griffin on the investigation and his best friend, Christine, decides to just the same. After a huge finding at Egypt, the archeologist has a great deal of paperwork and any excuse to avoid it sounds great.

As if fatal accidents, disappearances and hushed secrets weren’t enough to creep Whyborne out, he finds out that a former work colleague of Griffin is also working on the city. Elliot wasn’t simply beautiful, good humored and smart: he also had to be Griffin’s ex-lover.

Things are looking great already.

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the analysis

Just remembering that those are my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂

As if it was possible to not like anything that Jordan writes, haha! I loved Threshold even more that the first book! It was darker, funnier, sexier and totally swoon worth *–* Whyborne once again made his way into my heart and the mystery always drove me nuts! Seriously, just five stars aren’t enough!

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The narrative was once again first person styled, from Whyborne’s point of view. I really love his as a narrator, so I didn’t even bat an eyelash to this aspect, haha! Also, I really think that first person works well in mystery books – assuming that everything will be revealed in the end to the reader, of course!

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The plot was complex and had many mysteries to keep the reader guessing. From the moment that Whyborne, Griffin and Christine left Widdershins, the roller coaster had only one way: down. I was surprised to find a way more darker and creepier atmosphere in Threshold than on the previous book. Hawk’s writing also was fantastic and somehow even better ❤ Seriously, this whole book is too good!

The characters were once again so lively and real that I wanted to hug them! Whyborne grew up so much in this book, even more than he did in the last. Griffin also evolved a lot and now I’m more sure that he loves Whyborne just as much as Whyborne loves him. I often felt like it was a one sided relationship, but it was awesome to be wrong, haha!

Also, Christine was seriously badass and made all the males in this book – Whyborne and Griffin included – look like whining slackers, haha! The woman can shoot like a damn soldier =O And was the reason behind many of my our loud laughs while reading Threshold, haha!

Once again, I can’t say a thing about villains and culprits as to not spoiler the book, but know this: YOU WON’T SEE IT COMING AND EVEN AFTER IT DOES COME, YOU WILL KEEP WONDERING HOW IT WAS POSSIBLE!

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Now let’s get serious for a moment. I need to highlight the amazing historical research behind this book. Hawk describe the life on the mines in the end of the 19th century so vividly and accurately that my heart clenched. Being a History nuts, I had already made some previous research on miners lives in that time and it is not pretty. Hawk didn’t glamour up anything in the experience, but also didn’t bet on the melodramatic. Her tone is one of conformity while facing one more awful thing engraved on Human’s History and I thought it very appropriated. We can’t deny it happened, we don’t need to make a scene because it happened. We acknowledge and keep going.

Another highlight were the sex scenes. OMG IT WAS HOT! I loved every second of them and I love how Hawk doesn’t abuse on hot scenes to keep her reader interested 🙂

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Oh, and I brought some of the best quotes of the book for you to understand why you NEED this series on your life:

“A great deal of whiskey had been consumed, and I wondered what Father would think if he knew how his money was being spent. Actually, never mind. If he knew I’d spent the night surrounded by female prostitutes, he’d probably consider it a sign of improvement.” – Whyborne

~*~

“If you find you need anyone shot, send word and I’ll come at once.” – Christine

~*~

“Please stop reading the licentious affairs of others and return to the task at hand.” – Griffin

~*~

“I’d managed to disappoint everyone among the living, so I might as well start adding the dead to the list.” – Whyborne

~*~

And this killer dialogue:

Whyborne: “My dearest pudding pie,” I read aloud.

Griffin: Yes, my little turnip?

Whyborne: Hilarious. If you ever call me anything of the sort again, we shall have words.

~*~

I told you that you needed Whyborne & Griffin in your life ❤

Overall, if you like paranormal, mystery, historical and gay romance, stop sitting or standing there reading this review and come join me on the fandom army of Whyborne & Griffin!

5star

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Thanks for reading my review and a special thanks to Jess for indulging me on book club and bearing with me on diet-coke-drunk nights and a high amount of fangirling over those boys, haha! Love you, Jess!

assinatura

BOOK BLITZ: Fated Memories, by Joan Carney


Hi, there! Welcome to one more book blitz, but on Xpresso Book Tours! 😀 We’ll be talking about Fated Memories, by Joan Carney 🙂

Fated Memories
Joan Carney
Publication date: April 15th, 2016
Genres: New Adult, Romance, Time-Travel

summary

A woman, a war, a vision of the future past…

Burdened with the scars of a tortured childhood and a shattered romance, Kitty is being forced to resign from the dull, anonymous job she’s been hiding behind. With her life in shambles and her friends moving on without her, she jumps at her cousin, Maggie’s, invitation to visit. However, Maggie’s new boyfriend, Simon, has a secret that accidentally hurls the trio a hundred and fifty years into the past. Trapped in the midst of the bloodiest war in American history, the events that unfold will require more mettle than Kitty’s ever had.

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purchase links

You can find Fated Memories in both paperback and ebook versions 🙂

Amazon / Barnes & Noble

excerpt

Kitty’s hands shook and her vision blurred with tears. It didn’t matter. After having read the short note three times, the words ‘… transfer to the second floor’ had been engraved on her brain. She’d found the letter in her mail slot at the hospital where she worked, just this morning. That’s Richard’s floor! The wound from their breakup still scarred her heart. What do I do now? Quit my job?

The elevator doors opened and Richard Delaney stepped off surrounded by his physical therapy staff, who were tittering at one of his clever quips. Kitty wheeled around, making a beeline for the restroom. She couldn’t let him or those bitchy nurses see her cry. In her haste to become invisible, she miscalculated the corner of the wall and, smacking her shoulder against it, bounced back flat on her ass. Silence washed over the unit as everyone’s eyes turned to her.

Flushed with embarrassment, she scrambled to her feet, faced her audience and curtsied. “I’m here all week, folks, don’t miss the show!” Then she burst through the lady’s room door.

Kitty locked herself in the stall, working to salvage her dignity while dialing her cell phone for her pillar of strength; the one who always knew what to do.

“Ma?” Despite her efforts to control it, her voice still shook.

“Kitten, honey, are you crying? What’s the matter, are those silly boys in school teasing you again? Should I go speak with the principal?”

“Funny, Mom, no I only need to talk to someone. Remember when I told you the hospital makes the ward clerks reapply for their jobs every few years so they can weed out the ones they no longer want? Well, it’s that time again. I got my take-it-or-leave-it offer today and it says they’re bumping me from the step-down unit, to the pits of the med/surg dungeon. If I don’t accept it, I’ll be out of a job. I don’t know what to do.”

Silence.

“Mom, are you still there?”

“Yes, I’m here.” She blew out a long breath. “Kitty, you’re a smart lady, but if you don’t respect yourself enough to stand up and take charge of your life, you’ll always be at the mercy of others. Remember, the choices we make follow us and decide our fate.”

“I know, Mom, but…”

“The best advice I have for you, sweetheart, is to move home with us so you can go back to college and learn more marketable skills.”

Kitty had battled with them before over this. In her mind, living with her parents at her age was the same as having a big red letter “L” tattooed on her forehead. “I see, okay. Um, I have to get back to work now. I’ll talk to you later, Ma. Thanks for listening.”

As she washed off the mascara tracks from her tears, she studied her reflection in the restroom mirror, mulling over the misery that was her life. You’re almost thirty years old, Kitty Trausch, what have you got to show for it? A man? Not since Richard dumped me last year. A career? More like a crappy job that’s become unbearable.

Kitty remembered her mom’s mantra “When the world gets rough,” she’d say, “remind yourself of the good things you have.” She thought hard for a positive slant, but only came up with her prized closet full of shoes and salvation from her acne plague. Great, at least that and two-seventy-five will get me on the subway. Oh, and one more good thing. Rooming with Sonia allowed her to walk the short distance to the hospital and not have to ride the train from Tuckahoe to Manhattan. Wow, I’m overwhelmed with gratitude.

the author

A transplant from the Bronx to San Diego, Joan’s lucky number is four. She has four children, four grandchildren, drinks about four cups of coffee a day, and is now enjoying her fourth career as a novelist. When not planted in front of the computer writing or doing genealogy research, Joan enjoys spending time with family and friends and volunteers at the local church.

Website / Facebook / Pinterest

giveaway

There will be four winners in this awesome INTERNATIONAL giveaway!

  • Three lucky winners will take home each a signed copies of Fated Memories
  • One lucky winner will take home a $25 Amazon gift card

No matter the prize you aim for, if you’d like to enter, just click here and good luck: GIVEAWAY!

That’s it, thanks for reading 🙂

assinatura

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COVER REVEAL: Her Heart’s Desire, by Allison Merritt

Hello, there! Sorry for the late post, all shall be explained in an update later, I promise! For now, let’s focus on the beautiful cover revealed to Her Heart’s Desire, from Allison Merritt, hosted by Reading Addiction Virtual Book Tours 🙂

her heart's desire

Her Heart’s Desire

Allison Merritt

Historical Viking Romance

Publishing Date: May 24th, 2016

summary

One woman’s desire will unite enemies and raise heroes.

Weary of battle and loss, Idunna Fundinsdottir has two desires–peace and to hold a child of her own. As a war widow, her one chance at happiness rests in the hands of Eoghann Kentigern, a man who was once her enemy. Despite their differences, she saves the mysterious Saxon from the noose and binds herself to him in marriage. She longs for a child, but the fair Saxon tempts her heart as well.

In a moment of clarity, Eoghann killed his brother in battle to save his long-lost sister, then vowed his fealty to a Norse king. When a plot to murder the king and his family comes to light, to repay his debts, Eoghann takes his family’s life in his hands and flees for safety. Forced to return to Suibhne, his childhood home, he faces the choice of becoming the man he wished to be, or remaining the coward who stood in his brother’s shadow for too long. To keep Idunna safe and his vows to his king, he must stand and fight or lose everything.

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excerpt

“If you hurt her, I will gut you.”

Eoghann Kentigern swallowed, but held the iron hard stare with his brother-in-law, King Hella Ingvasson. To break it would show cowardice and he didn’t mean to reveal his underbelly to the most powerful man in the settlement.

Hella’s threat was unnecessary. Hurt Idunna, the woman who had saved his life when she had every reason to hate him?

“You have my word, Your Grace.” His voice wasn’t as strong as he would have liked, but even weak, it was better than having no voice at all. Without Idunna’s intervention, his head would be rotting on a pike somewhere.

Hella narrowed his eyes and jerked his chin at the curtain separating Idunna Fundinsdottir’s room from the hallway. Eoghann’s room now too since he’d vowed to protect and honor her a few hours earlier.

He sucked in a breath and pushed the curtain aside. On legs stiff as aged wood, he crossed the floor. Idunna waited for him blank-faced and rigid in a bed piled high with blankets and a shaggy gray wolf pelt. She didn’t meet his gaze when he lifted the bridal crown of woven vines. It tangled in her seal brown hair and she flinched as he gave a little tug.

“Forgive me,” he murmured. He didn’t need Hella, the king’s faithful brothers, nephew, and the other two men tagging along as witnesses to this charade believing he’d harmed her on purpose.

She said nothing as she folded her hands together.

He carried the crown to Hella, then held it out. The king took it with another sharp look, then allowed the curtain to swing into place.

Eoghann’s shoulders slumped as the sound of footsteps retreated from the doorway. Norsemen seldom invented an excuse not to attend a celebration. Apparently the queen’s traitor brother’s wedding claimed the exception as an event few of them could stomach. Aside from Hella, Ealasaid, Erik, Bjorn, their wives and children, the turn out had been abysmal. The shame of marrying a woman only to save his life almost caused Eoghann to flee. Might have, if Hella hadn’t been guarding him all day.

He faced Idunna, but his feet froze and dread weighed him down.

They were alone for the first time since he’d come to Solstad. Alone with a woman who couldn’t possibly love him because of the slaughter he’d helped bring to the neighboring village of Freysteinn. One of the warriors he’d marched with to slay the vikingrs had killed her first husband. Only a mad man would pretend Idunna could ever forgive him.

In Norse custom, they were supposed to consummate their marriage, which would tie them together as one in the community. The rituals of cleansing steams and baths before the wedding were meant to help them cast off their old lives. No amount of scrubbing or herbs would fix him. Not after what he’d done. He was the reason her first husband—the one she loved—was in the ground.

the author

allison merritt

A love of reading inspired Allison Merritt to pursue her dream of becoming an author who writes historical, paranormal, contemporary, and fantasy romances, often combining the sub-genres. She lives in a small town in the Ozark Mountains with her husband and dogs. It’s not unusual to find her lurking in graveyards, wandering historical sites, or listening to ghost stories.

Allison graduated from College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout, Missouri with a B.A. in mass communications that’s gathering dust after it was determined that she’s better at writing fluff than hard news.

Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads

That’s it, thanks for reading 🙂 Did you like the cover??

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Keeper of Pleas, by Annelie Wendeberg

Hi, there! Good afternoon, hope you’re having a wonderful Saturday so far! I’m here today to talk about my last finished book: Keeper of Pleas, by wonderful Annelie Wendeberg. She was awesome and great and sent me a review copy, but my cold got me a week later in finishing it 😦 Anyway, better late than never, right? Haha! Thanks again, Annelie!! What a mystery!!

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from my Instagram 🙂

the story

December, 1880.

Coroner Sévère gets himself into one of the most macabre cases of his career when nine corpses are discovered by chance in England. The macabre part? All are newborns with obvious signs of violent deaths.

The mystery gets bigger when the mortician responsible for the bodies goes missing and it’s found dead in the Thames. What at first seemed two very distinct cases without any relation between themselves soon get trickier.

To be exact, everything gets set into motion in the second Sévère steps on Miss Mary’s room. Both found their fighting matches. Who shall be the winner? Who shall solve the mystery?

Who shall be the surviviour?

the analysis

Just remembering that those were my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂

I was beyond excited when Annelie send me her new book. I already explained how her work was a key piece for me to pick up more books for reading in this post, so I’ll skip that part, haha! But seriously, she never seizes to stop impressing me. Even though I had some problems with this book – especially in the beginning, as it all sounded so confusing – but as soon as I got my mind together, I flew through it. Who did it? Why? Will it happen again?

I found myself lost in a very vivid and alive London in the 19th century, running along Sévère and Mary to find answers and see who would win their private social war. This was a first class mystery that made me grab my seat and have a very intense ride. I only took a star off because of the confusing beginning and because I was bothered by most of the sex scenes. I understand what Annelie did, animalizing things on purpose and I think it was necessary in many points, but I shivered a lot, haha! Four proud stars 🙂

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The narrative style was third person with alternating points of view between several characters and that was what made me so confused in the beginning. You see, I have a very shitty memory and am particular awful with names. Sometimes, I finish books without being sure of the characters’ names, especially if they are first person narrated. However, in Keeper of Pleas’ case, it went beyond that. The mystery dominates the pages since the first line and we didn’t know whose point of view we were reading until the middle or end of it :/

I have to say that, after my brain was able to process the beginning and understand who were the protagonists (yes, you read it right, unfortunately), I dived head first in this 19th century London. Every corner hid more mystery and every answer raised even more questions. IT WAS SO COOL AND AWESOME!

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Wendeberg writing style is impeccable. She makes everything so human, so real that I felt like being physically sucked to my iPad’s insides were starting to sound like a possibility. Several times I had to force my eyes out of the screen and take a deep breath, study my surroundings and make sure I was still on 21th century before resuming my read. Wendeberg truly wraps her reader into the story.

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The plot was complex, intricate and I didn’t know who had done it until the last second, always second guessing every witness, every clue, every evidence. I JUST NEEDED TO KNOW WHO DID IT! And even after it was revealed, I didn’t know if I could trust if it was the real deal or not, haha! Seriously, I was a goner for Keeper of Pleas. The elements entwined won me over – London, 19th century, mystery, thriller, the macabre, the action, the romance. I’m pretty sure this simply wasn’t that perfect for me because Sévère was straight, haha!

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Anyway, let’s talk a bit about characters now. Wendeberg’s construction was impeccable, I haven’t a word against her. Every character was remarkable in a subtle way, all so painfully human in their qualities and faults. The relationships were also built very well and she makes a point of expressing how it was all about the lust between Sévère and Mary at first and how they took their time building trust. To be honest, I still don’t know if they ever really loved each other and the end of the book doesn’t help matters, haha! Don’t worry, I wont’t spoil anything, but brace yourself for several bombs to fall off your head, haha!

Keeper of Pleas left me breathless, confused and in a severe (haha) need of a hug, so I think it’s safe to say that Wendeberg slayed it once again 🙂 If you enjoy good mystery, thrillers, intellectual wars and face-slapping ends, you need to stop everything and get yourself a copy of Keeper of Pleas *–*

4star

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Thanks so much for reading my review! Also, thanks again for the book, Annelie! I’m delighted to have read another book from you and Keeper of Pleas was SUCH A RIDE, haha! ❤

Do you guys like books that make you second guess everything all the time? 🙂

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NEW BOOK ALERT: Keeper of Pleas, by A. Wendeberg

Hi, there! Welcome to one of those serendipity moments that I have here and there to discover new book birthdays all by myself, haha!

Today is the release day of Keeper of Pleas, by Annelie Wendeberg, also credited as A. Wendeberg! ❤

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from my Instagram 🙂

summary

On December 10, 1880, Coroner Sévère makes a gruesome discovery: nine newborns, buried in flowerpots, and hidden in plain sight in Whitechapel. A mortician receives the bodies and vanishes. Clues for the two seemingly unconnected cases are scarce.

When police and coroner learn that the missing mortician might have spent his last moments at the bosom of the infamous prostitute Miss Mary, a series of events is nudged into motion. Lies are unearthed, rumours spread. Yet, the killer remains a faceless phantom.

His secret seems buried forever.

Until the night Sévère requests Miss Mary’s services…

Warning: Post-mortems and prostitution are shown unprettified.

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You must be wondering why is this book relevant to me, right? Well played, dear friend. Well played. You may want to sit, it’s story time.

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As soon as I started my Journalism major in 2012, I started to read ebooks. One of my first ebooks was this freebie that I got at iBooks called The Devil’s Grin, first in the Anna Kronberg Thriller series. It was a Sherlock Holmes adaptation and IT WAS AWESOME! I loved it to the core and that was one of the books that made me really take an interest in ebooks – before that, I’d only buy or download an ebook on my phone if it was a gay romance, haha! Annelise, dear, you are a lost cause.

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Anyway, the time has passed and I unfortunately never had the opportunity of finishing the Anna Kronberg Thriller series, but I did find Annelie again online and started to follow her on Instagram and subscribed to her newsletter. AND GUESS WHAT?! Some days ago, she sent me Keeper of Pleas in exchange for an honest review!!! *—*

No need to say how incredible happy I was, right? Thanks again for the honor, Annelie!!

[Update: you can read my review for Keeper of Pleas here! 🙂 ]

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Story time is over, thanks for your audience, haha!

purchase links

You can find Keeper of Pleas in both ebook and paperback formats! If you look for the paperback, go to Barnes & Noble 🙂

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes Store

the author

Way back then: Grew up at butt-end of the World, also called “small East German village”, total loser at school, then went out with little hammer & little chisel to help tear down the Berlin wall. End of communism resulted in beginning of creative freedom. Best thing ever, even learned something in school. Somehow ended up at university, studied biology, graduated, went with ship across the Atlantic (marine biology, yay!), chucked 20.000€ worth of sampling equipment into deep sea (hauled it up again, phew!), got some price fellowship from Caltech without realising they hand out only one per year, returned to Germany two years later.

Some time in the middle: Adjunct professor in environmental microbiology; blogger for Nature and Spektrum der Wissenschaft.

Right now: Scribbler of Things (which somehow resulted in an award and 4 countries picking up my work for translation), workshop giver on Creative Science Writing, editor (e.g  “The Remedy” by Thomas Goetz, Penguin/Gotham), cover designer, mentor for the Afghan Women Writing Project, house-fixer-upper, veggie-grower, cheese-maker, and typo-producer.

Website | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads

That’s it, guys! I hope I haven’t bored you too much 🙂 If you like Victorian era, mystery and thrillers, you need Annelie’s books in your book shelves, whether they are physical or digital ❤

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Hexbreaker, by Jordan L. Hawk (Hexworld #1)

Good night and hello again! As I promised earlier, I’m back with another gay book review, haha! This time, is another marvelous work from one of my favorite authors ever: Jordan L. Hawk! She was awesome and kind enough to send me a copy of Hexbreaker, first book in the Hexworld series and her newest release that hit stores as we speak, in exchange for an honest review ❤ As soon as I discovered the existence of Hexbreaker, I was already fangirling like crazy, so it is no wonder it took me only a day to finish it. It could have been less, but the house insisted on throwing a tantrum and not cleaning itself alone, forcing me to stop my reading in the middle to tend to it, ugh!

But the moment has arrived, so let’s talk about my new sweet darling Hexbreaker 😀

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the story

19th century, New York City. But not quite as you know it…

In a world full of magic, shifters – mostly called familiars – and witches, Cicero is a cat working under the Metropolitan Witch Police. As most of familiars, Cicero had yet to find his witch and forge a magic bond, so he stayed under the Magic Police’s protection along several other shifters.

As his animal form may suggest, Cicero is all grace, ego, beauty and sassiness. A true intellectual with passion for any kind of art, a bohemian at heart. A liberal lover, an independent creature that dreaded and fantasized about the moment in which he would encounter his witch (haha). He knew his time was running and he would have to pick someone in case his witch didn’t show up, but what if his witch turned to be a beast in permanent human form? What if his witch would be some random bully with only muscles and no brains at all? Cicero wouldn’t put up with the abuse – but also didn’t want to deal with the rejection, that hit so close to home.

A literal opening of door proved all his fears true in the wardrobe-sized person of Tom Halloran, a bulky ogre. A copper. A man with no brains and zero magic ability… According to tests.

His witch.

Tom Halloran is one of the last honorable coppers left in the regular Metropolitan Police Department. After an awful episode under his watch, he gathered his courage and got his superior’s permission to report to the Metropolitan Witch Police. Tom is a man of many secrets with a terrible stained past, but he never gave up standing for those who needed him. He wouldn’t allow something that awful to happen on his watch and neighborhood again.

And if solving the case meant he would have to put up with some weird and moody fellow and his tantrums, so be it. Tom was sick of seeing blood being spilled by his family’s mistakes. He was sure that he and the cat Cicero could make their forced partnership work if Cicero looked past Tom’s simple ways and appearance.

The only thing both men agreed on was that they would never think of losing their hearts along the way.

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the analysis

Just remembering that those were my impressions and opinion as a reader 🙂

First things first: I am sorry for the giant blurb, but this is the kind of story that you feel like asking your friends to gather around a fire while you tell it, haha! Second, I’m so not impartial regarding Jordan’s work BECAUSE SHE RULEZ! Hexbreaker was my fitfth book by her and I loved every single one of them ❤ If Ava March is my queen for gay sugared historical romances, Jordan is my queen for gay paranormal historical romances *–*

I had great expectations for Hexbreaker and Hawk managed to surpass them all and still leave me gapping at the final twist. I kind of guessed the culprit pretty fast, but the motives and who really pulled the strings remained a mystery for me until the last second. AND IT WAS GREAT! I loved every minute of this book and now I just need to grab the prequel too or I will have an attack or something! (Yes, there is a prequel, more info here, haha!) Once again, Jordan got my heart, squeezed tight, threw it to the wall and said goodbye with a blown kiss. Results? FIVE BEAUTIFUL STARS!

The narrative style was third person ( ❤ ), with switching points of view between Cicero and Tom. I loved how much sentiment, feelings and depth Hawk manage to put through Hexbreaker’s pages, sucking the reader in and refusing to let go while you were away from the book. Not for the first time when it comes to her work, I found myself vacuuming my apartment and thinking so hard that you could see steam coming from my ears. Who? Why? What am I missing on this picture? Who is safe to trust, who can I blame?

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This was my level of concentration on what my body was actually doing lol

I find amazing the amount of power that Hawk has over my mind each time I pick one of her books to read. I can’t disconnect, I can’t let it go, I need to get to the very bottom of the mystery or the problem in order to start breathing again. You may want to grab a chair, it’s reflection time.

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Being a book blogger, it’s normal for me to read quite a lot. I already read quite a lot before becoming a blogger, but since then, I’ve been breaking personal record after personal record in reading matters. And despite being lucky enough to enjoy a big part of what I read, there are a handful of books that seem to work some kind of black magic on me. As I read them, I feel like I’m not into my body anymore. There are no pages, paper, screens, hands, eyes. Nothing. Just a wild swirl of emotions that once was me and the story unfolding in my head. And if I’m interrupted, I feel physically difficult to move my body. To get my legs working, my eyes adjusting to the world. And it feels so… Wrong. My own body feels out of place. I feel like I could just detach myself from it and walk away. Fly, I don’t know. I feel like I have to fight to remain in my reality and not fall back into the book’s one. Like my reality was the fictional one, the hard place to get into, and not the other way around.

Hexbreaker was one of the books that stripped me from my own body. To the point that I didn’t hear my phone ringing right next to me, that my dad had to poke me hard in the forehead to let me know about dinner and that my mom had to throw a blanket over me because I was under dressed to the weather and wouldn’t hear her commands to put on a hoodie and socks.

And when I get back and realize what has happened, how hard I fell for the book, I feel in my bones why reading can be the best experience of one’s life. The best moment of one’s  day. That breath of fresh air into a dull existence without any real excitement. When I open a book, I become Bilbo Baggins going out on an adventure. And nothing else matters outside of the pages in my hands, no matter if they are literal or digital.

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Sorry for the major reflection, haha! My whole point is that I suffered from lured mind into book pages in all my Hawk’s reads so far, just with variation of stages in its seriousness. Hexbreaker for sure is the champion so far on the list, haha!

Back to the story. As you may have guessed, the plot is brilliant, with a nice degree of complexity to it and a perfect mix of elements. Romance, mystery, humor, thriller, drama, action, paranormal… It all entwined in such harmony in Hawk’s writing that I felt like that New York was real and in front of me. Hawk’s combines very well obvious events with jaw-dropping twists and doesn’t waste a single scene over her chapters. Every small thing has a purpose, a catch to it. We still have some questions, but this is a series and I know that Hawk won’t leave us in the dark 🙂 No pressure, haha!

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The characters were bewitching and surprised me a lot. I knew I’d like Tom since the moment he appeared, but liking Cicero too was unexpected. I usually prefer my gay protagonists all males that happen to like other all males and Cicero was clearly a diva. But he grew on me so quickly that I didn’t even noticed when I started pinning for him too =O Only Tom made it to My Bookish Boyfriends list, but I’d love to have Cicero as a Bookish Bff. I’m sure we would laugh a lot together, haha!

I loved how perfect Tom was in his imperfections. He isn’t your typical dashing knight in a shining armor or the prince charming. He’s a regular poor guy, built for hard labor, too big, with the minimal scholarship and no fashion sense whatsoever. And, just like Cicero, I found him to be quite refreshing. Don’t get me wrong, I still love the classical handsome and perfect princes and knights, but sometimes is nice to see new scenarios, haha!

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I’m also now very interested in Dominique and Rook’s story. They are the main couple in the prequel novella mentioned on the beginning of this review and I am ashamed to confess that I still hadn’t the opportunity to buy it, oops! So poor of me.

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I really need to fix that, ugh!

Oh, and can we just stop for a moment just to appreciate this cover? It is so delicate, classy, sexy and colorful! *—*

Also, I’d like to highlight how well Hawk handed the sex scenes on the book. They are few and all have a very distinct purpose: to show how Cicero and Tom’s relationship was growing stronger with time and how they slowly fell in love with each other behind the lust. Dear Jordan…

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Overall, Hexbreaker is a swoon-worthy romance packed with surprised and magic. If you like historical romances, paranormal books, shifters and seat-grabbing books, just drop my blog and go get your copy, haha!

5star

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Thanks so much for reading my review! Sorry for the size and the thoughts in the middle of it, haha! Also, an enormous thank you to the Queen Jordan, that sent me her book in the first place ❤ CAN YOU TELL I’M IN LOVE WITH THE HEX WORLD?!

Bellow, you’ll find the purchase links for Hexbreaker, my post talking about its release (there are insights of Jordan herself on it) and the other books by Jordan that I already reviewed 😀

purchase links

You can find Hexbreaker in both paperback and ebook formats!!

Amazon | Amazon UK | ARe | Smashwords | Kobo | iBooks | Nook

You can see my previous post about Hexbreaker and The 13th Hex here 🙂

And here we have my full list of reviews for Jordan’s books so far:

HAWK, Jordan L.Dangerous Spirits, Spirits #2 (review here!)

HAWK, Jordan L.Widdershins, Whyborne & Griffin #1 (review here!)

Another one is already in the oven, so stay tuned! 😀

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