High Contrast: Evolution Ink Book 1

High Contrast (Evolution Ink, #1)High Contrast by Tess Bowery
ebook, 226 pages                                                   Publication: May 3rd 2016 by  Samhain Publishing   My rating: 💎💎💎

Blurb:  The deepest scars aren’t the ones that show.
Jacob Shain is your average member of Generation Screwed. He has a boring internship, no cash flow, and a tiny NYC apartment he has to share with Ethan, his much-cooler, tattoo-artist twin brother. Not to mention his love life is DOA. At least, until his brother’s shop hires on a new piercer, and Jacob’s humdrum life takes a turn for the weird.

Cody Turner is gorgeous, funny and kind—everything Jacob wants in a boyfriend. Except for the way he refuses to talk about his past, or where he lives, or anything about his personal life.

When Ethan is arrested while on a mission of mercy, the reason Cody is so tight lipped comes to light. And while Jacob and Cody fight to understand the depth of their feelings for one another, the police dogs catch their scent. So does the local mob.

Now Jacob has to make the hardest choice of his life: stay safe like a good boy, or dive headfirst into a world he barely understands…and hope Cody is there to break his fall.

Warning: Contains a good boy who wants to be bad, a bad boy who longs to be good, bodies that are canvases for living art and high-speed chases with police dogs.

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This was not at all what I expected. From the looks of the cover I expected something a little darker or grittier maybe? More of a serious read at the very least. However I found that High Contrast was more of a mixture of humor, romance and a touch of drama and angst.

High Contrast was not just a story of straight laced Jacob, a self confessed nerd and Cody the reformed badboy tattooed piercer. There is an entire cast of great characters from Jacob’s twin brother Ethan, his bestfriend and Ethan’s girlfriend Andi, Ethans business partners Travis and Val and sweet young Priya the tattoo shops counter girl. They are a great group of friends, a pseudo-family and best of all a Scoobyesque gang of wannabe slueths.

I loved the banter even if at times it felt a little immature, especially between Jacob and Ethan who at times I felt might have stolen the spotlight. I was a little disappointed with the “criminal/mob” element, mainly because it fell short. There was a lot of potential there but didn’t get enough page time.

I think this was a good setup for a series and I will definitely be on the lookout for the next book.

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📖ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for honest review!

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The Winning Season by Alison Packard

The Winning Season

The Winning Season

By Alison Packard

★★★★1/2

Published July 15, 2013 by Carina Press

From the moment I first read about Matt Scanlon and Kelly Maxwell in Love In The Afternoon I could not wait to read their story.  Finally it’s here and it’s definitely a winner, I loved it!

Kelly Maxwell has finally landed her dream job as publicist for the San Francisco Blaze. But the team’s newest member, handsome bad boy catcher Matt Scanlon, is refusing every interview. She’s got to get him to open up before the season ends, or she may not be back next year. And after everything she overcame to achieve her dream, Kelly’s not about to let that happen.

Matt Scanlon just wants to be left alone to rebuild his life and his career. After a year of masking the pain of a recent loss with hard partying and fast women, he finally hit rock bottom and was traded to a team he’s loathed his entire life—a team with little to no chance at the post-season.

Butting heads is getting Kelly and Matt nowhere but annoyed, and with the team’s schedule on the road, they can’t avoid close quarters—or their surprising attraction to one another. As the season winds down, Matt finds his growing feelings for Kelly have brought his numbed emotions back to life. But when betrayal shatters their fragile trust, winning it all seems more impossible than ever.

baseballI loved the characters in this story.  

Matt, once a “Golden Boy” of baseball has now become the “Bad Boy” of baseball.  For the past year he’s been off the rails, drinking, fighting, sleeping with too many women.  His baseball career is quickly going downhill and he’s traded to the Blaze, the team he hates, the team where Kelly Maxwell works.  He hates how he treated Kelly the night he met her, he said things he never would have said if he wasn’t so far gone.  Now faced with seeing Kelly every day, forced to essentially work with her Matt has to deal with his growing attraction to Kelly, letting go of the pain he’s been in for the past year and hopefully getting his new team to the World Series.

Matt is hot and funny and has just the right amount of arrogance.  You can’t help but like him and want to see him redeemed not only with his fans and with Kelly but also with himself.  The mystery around what caused Matt to lose his way seems somewhat predictable until we find out the entire story and then it becomes heartbreaking.

Kelly is funny and smart and tough.  She has her own demons she’s fighting and although she seems to have it all together and not need anyone, Matt is just what she needs.  Matt challenges her and understands her.  Having a man who can pretty much get any woman he wants want you is the self confidence booster that Kelly truly needs.  If anyone can get Matt to open up it’s definitely Kelly.

I loved the tension between Matt and Kelly.  There is a great deal of buildup between the two characters and when they finally give into their attraction it’s great.  I felt the author did a perfect job of building heat and sexual tension without dragging it out too long.

There is also a great group of supporting characters who I really hope to see again in their own books.  JT the backup catcher and Matt’s only friend on the team.  Angie, Kelly’s best friend at work.  I’m definitely interested in finding out more about these two and seeing where they end up.

baseball-glove

If you read Love In The Afternoon you should definitely read The Winning Season, just as good if not better this is a great contemporary romance story.  If you haven’t read Love In The Afternoon it won’t take away from this story at all but I definitely recommend it to see not only that first meeting between Matt and Kelly but to also meet Sean and Kayla.

The Winning Season

Find out more about author Alison Packard at http://alisonpackard.com/

Purchase The Winning Season at amazon   button_buy_barnes_noble Released July 15, 2013!

Find out more about Alison’s debut novel Love In The Afternoon.

*Thanks again to NetGalley and Carina Press for a great read!

The Forever of Ella and Micha by Jessica Sorensen

The Forever of Ella and Micha
By Jessica Sorensen
★★★1/2

I keep struggling to decide whether or not I want to rate this one 3 stars or 4 stars so I think I am just going to settle on 3.5 Stars!

Ella and Micha may have thought that things were going to be great now that they were together and he was off with his band but now they face the difficulties of a long distance relationship and Ella is left to deal with feelings about her life and her past. Without Micha there to constantly pick up the pieces Ella begins to come to the conclusion that she has to do things for herself and maybe her baggage will end up being too much for Micha. All she has ever wanted is for him to be happy but can he be happy with her or will he eventually come to resent her?

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Micha realizes being on the road is not all that he thought it would be and the more time away from Ella the more he realizes what he really wants is her by his side. Scared that he will end up sending her running off and disappearing again he keeps his feelings about the future to himself, the last thing he wants to do is push her. Unfortunately the more he struggles to get through the time apart and missing her the more he realizes she is pushing him away. Micha knows his future is with Ella, does she feel the same way or is it better to move on?

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I am a huge fan of angst, I absolutely love it.  I am a sucker for a powerful read that takes me on a rollercoaster of emotions, crying, laughing, anger and elation are all emotions I crave when I am looking for the perfect book.  If you are looking for a fun, lighthearted, easy love story, this is not the book for you.  This book is full of angst (dare I say too much) and emotional turmoil.  Personally I will admit I loved The Secret of Ella and Micha and I was very satisfied with the ending,  I would have been perfectly alright with leaving it there and having the second book about Lila and Ethan (the subjects of book 3).   However with this we get to see redemption, growth and healing.  It’s a new beginning for both Ella and Micha.

As for the author, Jessica Sorensen I becoming a favorite of mine in this particular genre.  Again I loved The Secret of Ella and Micha and The Coincidence of Callie and Kayden was one of my favorite books of 2012.  I am anxiously awaiting for The Redemption of Callie and Kayden as well as the third book in the Secrets series The Temptation of Lila and Ethan.

*Thanks to NetGalley and for this book in exchange for honest review!

Woo Hoo It’s Here! Walking Disaster

Walking Disaster

Walking Disaster
By Jamie McGuire
★★★★★

“Our story might have been typical: Bad boy falls for good girl, but Abby was no princess. She was hiding something.”

If you have read Beautiful Disaster (If not I highly recommend it to get the full understanding of the story) then you know how they met, how they became friends and how they fell in love.  Abby told us all but now it’s time for Travis to tell us.  It’s his story now…

Travis Maddox is not only the quintessential Bad boy, he’s practically a legend. He’s slept with half of the female population at Eastern.  He rides a Harley and fights in underground arenas for money.  Everything about him screams heartbreak.

Abby Abernathy is all Good girl on the outside, fresh out of Kansas.  But Travis can tell from the minute he sees her in her cardigan and pearls that this girl is a lot more underneath it all.  She has an attitude and she’s a lot tougher than most would think.

Unlike most girls that meet Travis she has absolutely no desire to sleep with him.  What first is seen as a challenge by Travis quickly becomes a lot more.  Travis needs Abby to stick around, he’s never wanted to be friends with a girl before but with Abby he finally sees how important it is for her to be in his life. The more time he spends with her the more he falls for her.

“I decided a long time ago I would feed on the vultures until a dove came along.  A pigeon.  The kind of soul that didn’t impede on anyone; just walked around worrying about it’s own business, trying to get through life without pulling everyone else down with its own needs and selfish habits.  Brave.  A communicator.  Intelligent.  Beautiful.  Soft-spoken.  A creature that mates for life.  Unattainable until she has reason to trust you.” – Travis

Abby however can’t let herself think of Travis as more than a friend.  She has come to Eastern to get away from her old life.  She wants nothing to do with the one guy that reminds her too much of her past.  But no matter how hard Abby tries to keep things in the “just friends” category between her and Travis she can’t deny the pull she feels towards him.  

“…The fighting, the gambling, the drinking…it’s what I left behind.  When I’m around you it’s all right there for me in an irresistible, tattooed package.  I didn’t move hundreds of miles away to live it all over again.” -Abby

Travis can’t stop trying to get closer to Abby even if he knows she’s too good for  him.  No matter how hard he tries he can’t live without her, she makes him a better person.  No one can understand it but everyone can see the changes since Abby has come into Travis’s life.  If only Travis could prove to Abby that they belong together.

First they will have to get past his reputation and then they will have to face Abby’s past.

“When we first met, something inside both of us had changed, and whatever that was, it made us need each other.  For reasons unknown to me, I was his exception, and as much as i had tried to fight my feelings, he was mine.” -Abby (From Beautiful Disaster)


I am going to be honest, I thinks I did a 5 minute happy dance when I received a copy of this book.

I haven’t been this anxious to read a book in I have no idea how long so it completely made my day.  As a huge fan of the first one I was almost desperate to get my hands on this one and I was not at all disappointed.

Getting inside the mind of Travis Maddox was a great way to really get an understanding for the story.  There have been a lot of people out there that have questioned whether or not this book was an example of glorifying a destructive relationship. Although I never looked at it that way I have to admit that I could see why certain people may have thought that way.  This story is not all hearts and roses, the characters are not without faults and their relationship had been volatile and tumultuous from the get go.  However with this look into Travis a lot more of the reasons for his behavior are explained and we are able to see that he is slowly yet steadily changing, maturing and learning as they go along.

This book is a great followup to Beautiful Disaster.  Each book essentially tells us the same story however in each unique voice we get something new and exciting.  I am a huge fan of Jamie McGuire and Beautiful Disaster has been one of my favorite books, now Walking Disaster has been placed on that list as well.

Jamie McGuire is an excellent author with a great voice. This is the type of book you can read over and over and never grow tired of. I’ve read beautiful Disaster at least a dozen times and am always able to get something different out of it and I am confident that it will be the same with Walking Disaster.

*This ARC was provided by NetGalley for an honest review

Walking Disaster

Purchase Book Here

Atria Books

448 pages

ISBN 9781476712987

 April 2013

To find out more about this author visit her website: www.jamiemcguire.com

Lush (Delicious #3)

As always Lauren Dane has made me wish it was possible to jump into the pages of her books and live in the world of her characters.  As soon as I saw Lush I knew I had to have it.  The opportunity to catch a glimpse of those wonderful and sexy Browns and their friends is something I just can not pass up.  Of course Lush is not actually part of the Brown Siblings series but a part of the spin-off series Delicious but it still shares the irresistible galaxy.  We have a great set of characters that we were introduced to in Never Enough (Brown Siblings #4) as well as our wonderful core characters from The Brown Siblings books.


Lush (Delicious #3)
By Lauren Dane
★★★★☆

Mary Whaley has her hands full running a successful catering company and overseeing her supper club. She has everything she ever wanted—or so she thought. When she meets ridiculously hot and very dirty rock star Damien Hurley at her friend’s engagement party, the attraction she feels is overpowering—and she isn’t about to deny herself.

Damien is used to a hard and fast life. He and two of his brothers started a band when they were fresh out of high school—then they hit the big time and stayed there. He’s also a legendary madman on the stage and in the bedroom. But when he meets Mary, something clicks, and the bad boy starts thinking he may have finally found something good.

What begins as a series of fleeting trysts soon gets much more complicated. Damien can’t figure out why Mary doesn’t want more from him. And before long, it’s Damien who wants more from Mary. But it turns out Mary is no stranger to celebrity news, and he’s got a very big job ahead of him: proving that he’s worth more than a one-night stand…


 

Lush is the perfect blend of Hot and Sweet!  It started off as the typical sexy story the author is so great at creating and then blended smoothly into a sweet romance.  Of course what is not to love about a “Bad Boy Rocker” who meets his match in a  independent woman who not only knows who to make him hot in the bedroom but also in the kitchen?  What’s the old saying, “The way to a mans heart is through his stomach”?   

I loved Mary but I have to admit it was Damien that I could not get enough of.   I actually found myself a little jealous of Mary, of course I’m jealous of most of the women in these stories.

All in all the combination of food and music, a sexy drummer and a sweet caterer is a definite winner in my opinion.

*ARC provided by NetGalley for honest review

The Brown Siblings

Favorites of 2012

Wow there is nothing harder than coming up with a Top Ten Favorites list for me, I have read way too many great books this year.  After looking hard at my list of favorites these are the ten I finally settled on.  I can not wait to see what great books 2013 brings out!


Upcoming 2013 YA/New Adult Books I am anxious to read!

Upcoming 2013 Next in Series Books

Upcoming 2013 M/M Romance Books!

Piper Vaughn & M.J. O’Shea Moonstruck (Lucky Moon #3), anything by Amy Lane or Mary Calmes!

So with that said all there is left for now is:

Happy New Year!

 

I Can Not Wait!

Oh My God!

Touch & Geaux (Cut & Run #7) by Abigail Roux

Well we all know that I am a huge Ty and Zane fan and I have been practically biting my nails in anticipation for the new book in the Cut & Run series to come out. So far all I know is 2013 so I just have to sit and pray that it will be early 2013 and not late 2013.

The cover above was posted on Goodreads and I was so excited to see it although I am not so sure how I actually feel about it. The excerpts that have been posted are also scaring me just a little. I guess that’s what will make this such a must have read for me. I am now so curious I can barely stand it.


    Touch & Geaux Snippets

“Where have you been?”

Liam smiled crookedly and peered over the top of his sunglasses, blue eyes shining. “The same place you have, Ty. Hell.”


Ty: “Wait, so you picked out the escort in Miami because a dude in New Orleans winked at you the year before?”
Zane:“You have your type, I have mine.”
Ty:“My type is dark hair!”
Zane:“Your type is a gun.”
Ty:“Whatever, Zane.”
Zane:“You remind me of him too.”
Ty:“Who, the escort?”
Zane:“No. Well, yeah. But I mean you kind of remind me of the guy in the bowler hat.”
Ty:“Did you fuck me the first time because I reminded you of some random in a bar?”
Zane:“Sort of. Did you fuck me the first time because I had a gun?”
Ty:“Yes. And knives. That’s a better reason than yours.”
Zane:“Not really. Because mostly it was that you were hard and wet and begging me to.”


“Zane,” Ty said, his voice hoarse. He cleared his throat and took a deep breath. He seemed to be fighting to meet Zane’s eyes. “There’s something … something I’ve been keeping from you.”

Zane’s stomach flipped. “I thought we got all the secrets out.”

“Not this one,” Ty said, looking sick. — Touch & Geaux (From Roux’s Tumblr account:)


“I need your help,” Nick said without further greeting.

“Why, what’s wrong? Where are you?” Ty asked as he sat up in bed. Zane placed his hand on the small of Ty’s back, wiping his fingers through the sweat there.

“I’m in New Orleans,” Nick answered, his voice still pitched low. “I need you to come down here.”

“Why, what happened?” Ty ran a hand through his messy hair.

“I’ve been arrested. They’re going to charge me with murder, Ty.”