Tuesday, May 21, 2019

The Dark Bones by Loreth Anne White ~ Excerpt, Guest Post & Giveaway


Title: The Dark Bones
Author: Loreth Anne White
Release Date: May 21, 2019
Publisher: Montlake Romance


When Detective Rebecca North left her rural hometown, she vowed never to return. Her father’s apparent suicide has changed that. The official report is that retired cop Noah North shot himself, knocked over a lantern, and set his isolated cabin ablaze. But Rebecca cannot believe he killed himself.

To prove it, she needs the help of Ash Haugen, the man she left behind. But Rebecca and Ash share more than broken hearts. Something darker lies between them, and the investigation is stirring it back to life. Clues lead them to the home of Olivia West and her deeply troubled twelve-year-old daughter, Tori. The child knows more about the murder than anyone can imagine, but she’s too terrified to say a word.

And as a cold-blooded killer resurfaces from the past, Rebecca and Ash begin to fear that their own secrets may be even harder to survive.

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The Dark Bones Excerpt

Rebecca felt warmth. She was enveloped by it. She heard the crackle and pop of dry logs burning and, in the distance, dogs barking. The smell of … fire—
Her eyes shot open, her heart thumping.

He sat there. Ash. In a chair by the fire, watching her with his ice-blue eyes. She was in his living room, and the lighting had been dimmed. The flickering glow of the flames in the hearth behind him cast his rugged features into sharp relief. The scar down the side of his face looked harsh. An old brown dog with a white muzzle slept on a rug in front of the hearth.

Rebecca’s brain slotted puzzle pieces into place as she struggled through a mental haze to backtrack and figure out how she’d gotten here: The lights following her. The razed cabin and the clues that someone had been inside the shed and maybe fled the scene. Ash shooting at her. No gas in her truck. Fear of dying. Coming here to Haugen Ranch. Shucking her dad’s gear in Ash’s mudroom. Him helping her into the living room of his old family home—a great big log house built by his grandfather. Seating her on the sofa.

She sat up slowly, trying to pull her brain into sharper focus. A down duvet was wrapped around her, a heated blanket beneath that. The duvet smelled of fresh laundry. Yes, she recalled, the fire had already been going in the hearth when he’d brought her in—she’d noticed that. Next had come hot tea with honey, warm clothes handed to her—fleece, oversize. More tea.

He’d told her not to talk. Discussion could wait.

She met his eyes now and felt a visceral connection across the darkened room. This was her first proper look at him after all these years.

Her teen lover had aged. As she had. But he’d matured in a way she found attractive. He was neither sweet nor handsome. Rugged rather. A brooding look. Sun bronzed and weathered. Her attention returned to his scar. So prominent, cutting down the left side of his face from eye to jaw. He could have had plastic surgery over the past decades, but clearly hadn’t. Her memory slipped back to the day she’d tried to patch him up with the help of a small medical kit and knowledge she’d gleaned during her part-time job as a veterinary assistant.

He lied…

Her attention shifted to his hands. His knuckles were scarred.

What were you protecting him from that day?

She recalled the blood she’d seen on those ragged and bruised knuckles that day. Why had she not told her father she didn’t know for certain he’d fallen off his horse and been dragged across sharp terrain?

Why had she not questioned more firmly, at age sixteen, Ash’s refusal to go to the ER facility on that particular day? What deep psychology had driven her to possibly blind herself to search for a darker truth?

In that tempestuous, hormone-filled year she was sixteen, had she conveniently compartmentalized something that had created cognitive dissonance, because she’d just recently started sleeping with Ash, and needed to believe him? Needed to trust him again?

How had her actions that day shaped this present? Could it—she—have possibly played a role in her father’s death?

And why, oh dear God why, did Ash still make her feel things? This—this—was why she’d stayed away. He held an animal kind of magnetism over her. She felt it now, her gaze locked with his arctic eyes. Her attraction had blinded her to the fact he was not good for her. He was a liar.

She cleared her throat. “What time is it?”

“Almost midnight. You going to be okay? Do I need to drive you to Clinton?”

From his ranch it would take almost an hour, in the dark, on bad roads. And the ER would be closed. They’d have to call 911 for emergency to open up with an on-call physician. It reminded Rebecca that out here, one looked after one’s own.

“I … I must have passed out.”

A half smile. “Slept like a baby. You must have been tired.”

A desire to tell him all rose in Rebecca: How rough her journey home had been with the storms. How seeing her father’s body had gutted her. How exhausted she felt, emotionally. But she held back as her mind sharpened and the immediacy of why she was here, with him, in this house, was pulled into clear focus.

“What made you return to my father’s place when you did, Ash? How did you come to find me?”

“I go up to the Broken Bar mesa sometimes. The view of the valley on a clear, cold night is surreal.” A pause. “I needed to think.” After seeing you. The unspoken words seemed to simmer between them. “Someplace above it all. Then as the moon rose, I caught light glinting off metal where your father’s place was. I thought it might be a vehicle, so I went to check before heading home.” He paused. “You could have died out there.”

Rebecca swallowed as this fact sank like a stone through her gut.

“Have you been sitting there watching me like that all night?”

“You worried me,” he said. Then, very quietly, he added, “And I like to look at you.” He paused. “It’s been so long.”

Hunting For Betrayal with Author Loreth Anne White

My newest novel, THE DARK BONES, is about a cop, Rebecca North, who learns that her father—a retired police officer—has killed himself. She can’t believe it. But in order to prove it was murder she must return to her small, rural home town and face a lot of dark things she’s been running from including the man she left behind long ago, and a cold case thought long buried.

At the core, THE DARK BONES examines the lies people tell each other and themselves—the false narratives they construct in order to hide mistakes, or bad deeds, or hurtful truths, or realities that shame and burden them. And as Rebecca North, my detective, digs deep to find the truth of what really happened to her dad, she begins to crack open a carapace of old lies that wraps around a cold case—a  heinous deed that occurred in her small community twenty years in the past, a crime from which people are still hiding.

Rebecca fast learns that the secrets she is beginning to unearth are secrets people will still kill to keep. However, opening up this vault of lies and betrayals in the small town also reveals to Rebecca truths about herself, and about the man she once loved, Ash Haugen. A man who betrayed her. And in confronting those betrayals and old lies, and the reasons that underpinned them, Rebecca and Ash can finally heal, and open themselves to a love that was always meant to be. At the heart THE DARK BONES is also about second chances, and getting that opportunity to try and set right the collateral damages around betrayal.

Although THE DARK BONES stands alone, it also revisits the setting and some of the characters from an earlier book, A DARK LURE. Those earlier characters were left with a hard road to travel toward their happy end, and as some of them play a key role

in Rebecca and Ash’s story, we see them also confronting outfalls around betrayal, and getting chance to continue their journey towards a good life.

Author Biography

Loreth Anne White is an internationally bestselling author of thrillers, mysteries, and romantic suspense. A three-time RITA finalist, she is also the 2017 Overall Daphne du Maurier Award winner, and she has won the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award, the National Readers’ Choice Award, and the Romantic Crown for Best Romantic Suspense and Best Book Overall, in addition to being a Booksellers’ Best finalist and a multiple CataRomance Reviewers’ Choice Award winner. A former journalist and newspaper editor who has worked in both South Africa and Canada, she now resides in the Pacific Northwest with her family. Visit her at www.lorethannewhite.com.

Social Media Links


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Stuck In Books Featured Releases & Giveaway

From Avon...

What would it take to tame a wild cowboy?

One minute, Rhett Lockhart is a love ‘em and leave ‘em bull rider with a slow, sexy smile, a swagger, and not a care in the world. The next, he learns his free-wheeling days are over: a baby has been abandoned in the hospital, and there’s no question: he’s the father. But from the first moment he gazes into his daughter’s eyes, he knows the moment has come to say ‘no’ to no-strings. It’s time to grow up.

Standing in his way is the baby’s foster mother, Tara Alzate, who doesn’t quite believe Rhett is ready to change his ways. Still, she’s not not immune to his considerable charms. So when he proposes a marriage of convenience and shared custody, against her better judgement, she says “I do.” Can Tara tame this wild cowboy and make her own, long-buried dreams come true?

From Berkley...

Meg Tilly returns with a second gripping romantic suspense novel set on the idyllic Solace Island in the Pacific Northwest.

Eve Harris is all set to house-sit and run the bakery she shares with her sister while Maggie goes on her honeymoon, but there's one problem--the house is already occupied. By a movie star. He claims to be her brother-in-law's friend, and not only does he insist on staying, he also offers to help. Playing house has never been so tempting...

Rhys Thomas is looking for a place to lie low after wrapping up his latest film, so when Luke offers up his house as a safe haven, Rhys sees the perfect opportunity for a little R & R. But rest is the last thing on his mind as he and Eve grow close.

But Eve and Rhys are not as alone as they think. And as danger trails Eve, it will take everything Rhys has to save the woman he loves.


He may get a second chance at his one true love--if someone doesn't kill her first.

When Garrett Sterling leaves for a horseback ride through his family's sprawling Montana property, he's expecting a relaxing break from the construction at the Sterling guest ranch. What he gets is something far more sinister. It all happened so fast that it's hard for Garrett to sort out the facts. But two things are certain: someone is dead and the killer knows there was a witness.When a woman from his past emerges as a key piece of the investigation, Garrett is determined to uncover what really happened that day, how she's involved--and why everything she's ever told him is a lie.

From Lake Union...

From New York Times bestselling author Catherine Ryan Hyde comes a moving novel about two strangers who find that kindness is a powerful antidote to fear.

Raymond Jaffe feels like he doesn’t belong. Not with his mother’s new family. Not as a weekend guest with his father and his father’s wife. Not at school, where he’s an outcast. After his best friend moves away, Raymond has only two real connections: to the feral cat he’s tamed and to a blind ninety-two-year-old woman in his building who’s introduced herself with a curious question: Have you seen Luis Velez?

Mildred Gutermann, a German Jew who narrowly escaped the Holocaust, has been alone since her caretaker disappeared. She turns to Raymond for help, and as he tries to track Luis down, a deep and unexpected friendship blossoms between the two.

Despondent at the loss of Luis, Mildred isolates herself further from a neighborhood devolving into bigotry and fear. Determined not to let her give up, Raymond helps her see that for every terrible act the world delivers, there is a mirror image of deep kindness, and Mildred helps Raymond see that there’s hope if you have someone to hold on to.

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Teaser Tuesday ~ 5/21/19

This is a weekly bookish meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading.

To participate you:
* Grab your current read
(Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Meg Tilly returns with a second gripping romantic suspense novel set on the idyllic Solace Island in the Pacific Northwest.

Eve Harris is all set to house-sit and run the bakery she shares with her sister while Maggie goes on her honeymoon, but there's one problem--the house is already occupied. By a movie star. He claims to be her brother-in-law's friend, and not only does he insist on staying, he also offers to help. Playing house has never been so tempting...

Rhys Thomas is looking for a place to lie low after wrapping up his latest film, so when Luke offers up his house as a safe haven, Rhys sees the perfect opportunity for a little R & R. But rest is the last thing on his mind as he and Eve grow close.

But Eve and Rhys are not as alone as they think. And as danger trails Eve, it will take everything Rhys has to save the woman he loves.

Available today from Berkley Romance


She felt right.  As if she and no one else belonged on that sofa beside him.  His arm tightened around her, wanting to claim her for his own.  But he could tell from her posture when she'd come in the front door that tonight had wearied her.  (Page 169)
Rhys is an interesting guy, don't you think?

That’s our teaser for this week! What do you think? Do you have a teaser to share? Leave us a comment and link us up!

Monday, May 20, 2019

Spitfire in Love by Isabelle Ronin ~ Excerpt & Giveaway

Spitfire in Love 
By Isabelle Ronin 
Publication Date: 5/28/2019 

From the International Phenomenon with over 200 Million Reads on Wattpad

She's never at a loss for words.
He's determined to have the last one.


There he was with his piercing blue eyes and Lucifer black hair.
He was leaning against the wall, a lollipop in his mouth, hot as hell and twice as dangerous.

Kara Hawthorne never backs down, especially when it comes to protecting her family.


She looked so soft, harmless, like a pretty kitten, but she was as safe as a ticking time bomb.
My sweet, sweet Spitfire.

Cameron St. Laurent isn't intimidated by the feisty woman at his doorstep. And when she asks him for the impossible, Cameron knows just how to sweeten the deal...

The two combustible personalities are faced with unavoidable off-the-charts chemistry. But when Cam's dark past shows up, he'll have to slay his demons and lay himself on the line to win Kara, body and soul.

Indiebound: http://bit.ly/2WW3lCQ


Cameron’s blue eyes were even deeper, somehow more intense, in the muted glow of the light. They were patient as he followed Dylan to the front door—no, not patient. They were waiting. Anticipating what was to come.

I heard my brother’s footsteps and Cameron’s, then the click of the lock.

The echo it made in the room was as loud and heavy with meaning as a declaration of war.

Then those eyes, with those deep-blue irises, shifted to mine.

Conquer me, they challenged, before I conquer you.

It was bait.

And I wanted to bite.

I curled my hands into fists and instinctively stepped back, stopping when the back of my knees hit the couch.

The effect he had on me was undeniable, and I didn’t care for it. I didn’t like the way I felt defenseless around him, how he could strip away my reasoning just by looking at me.

As if he heard my thoughts, his lips, slowly and deliberately, formed into a smile.

I got you, his smile said, exactly where I want you.

Strength and controlled power showed in every movement of his body as I watched him cross the room toward me. His body was big and sleek, like a stealthy cat roaming the jungle, patient and hungry.

My eyes took in the long lines of his arms, the ripple of muscles, the veins that stood out like cords, his thick wrist. Every part disciplined, tight, and masculine.

He stopped in front of me.

“Kara.” He whispered my name. His voice was deep and rich, and my name sounded and felt so carnal coming from his lips. “Tell me why you’re here.”

I tried to answer. God knows I tried, but my body wouldn’t cooperate. It felt so easy, so sinful, like a soft, silky feather stroking my skin, to give in. Let someone else take control for once. No, not just someone. It had to be him. I closed my eyes in defense. I was losing, and surprisingly, I didn’t seem to mind. Was this what it felt like to want? To need?

The air was thick with tension, and I felt it shift before his fingers stroked the inside of my wrist. Once, twice. Then it was gone.

My lips opened a fraction, letting out a sharp breath. An expulsion, a way my body dealt with the surging desire in the aftermath of his touch.

Or maybe, maybe, it was a silent demand for more.

“Open your eyes,” he said softly.

I kept them closed.

“Kara.” His voice was soft as velvet, coaxing. “Look at me.”

But what would happen if I did?

This was something I’d never felt or experienced before. I’d never been this close to anyone nor had I wanted to be.

I was teetering between two worlds—the one where I would stay the same if I stepped away from him now, and the other one where the world I knew would end and change to something unfamiliar.

Which one would I choose?

I always put others before me. Responsibilities, commitments, family. When was the last time I did something just for the hell of it?

I opened my eyes. And stared right into the blue of his.

He was ruthlessly beautiful. The straight, dark brows, the deep-set eyes, the long, straight nose, the full lips. And all that beauty framed by soft, black hair.

I had thought he looked like a dark archangel when I first laid eyes on him. I still did.

He was as deep and dark as a cave, and I was standing right at his entrance. Should I go in or leave?

I made up my mind.

His lips parted in surprise as the my finger slowly traced his collarbone, marveling at the warmth of his skin, at the smoothness of it. I thought I’d be satisfied just by feeling it, but I wanted to do more.

His muscles tensed as I moved my fingers to the long line of his neck, rubbing the stubble on his jaw, tickling myself.

I smiled but didn’t say anything. I usually had a lot to say, but I wasn’t myself right now. I was different when I was with him. I felt more beautiful, more aware of myself as a woman.

The pulse at the base of his throat jumped as I focused on his lips and continued my exploration there. They were full, pink, with a prominent Cupid’s bow.

Suddenly, he opened his mouth and caught my finger between his lips, between his teeth, then with his tongue. And sucked.

I gasped, my eyes snapping to his as I snatched my finger away, feeling like my whole body was on fire.

There was so much emotion raging inside me. My skin prickled. I felt hot, itchy, needy. I wanted…more. Just more.

“You’re driving me fucking crazy,” he whispered. His voice was husky, more than a hint of frustration in it.

Where every move before had been disciplined, he now radiated restless energy. It felt like having a big, edgy cat in a small cage.

His eyes grew heavy, hungry. “I’m waiting for you to run away,” he said quietly.

When I didn’t reply, his arms fell dejectedly to his sides.

“I don’t want you to.”

I bit my lip at his confession. He made me feel wanted. That I shouldn’t deny myself what I wanted. Even just for this moment.

The way he looked at me felt like heat gliding across my skin. Hot, palpable, alluring.

He looked so good, so unapologetically male.


I looked up at him. He held his hand out to me, palm up.

“Come here,” he said huskily.

As if in a trance, I placed my hand in his. His hand was wide, with long, tapered fingers, and rough, with calluses and scrapes. A working man’s hand. A capable, strong, gorgeous man.

My eyes shifted to his. There was a delicious hot curl in my stomach at the approval and hunger I saw in his eyes.

He kissed my palm and placed it on his chest. His hands banded on my hips, his fingers pressing intimately, possessively, as he sprawled on the couch, pulling me to him and settling me on his lap.

I gasped as our bodies made contact, as I straddled him. He was wide, and God, so big that my legs stretched to accommodate him.

Up close, he was even more beautiful. Almost unreal. His features were perfect, his skin creamy and smooth.

His hands slipped under my sweater, fingers stroking the skin on my lower back. I shivered at the delicious rough texture of them.

When his lips touched my ear, I jumped. He let out a deep, low laugh.

Butterflies whirled in my stomach at the sound. Even his laugh was sexy.

“Can’t stop thinking about you,” he murmured.

He dragged his lips from my ear to my jaw, inhaling long and deep. My hands gripped his arms, waiting, wanting him to keep going, wanting to feel what was going to happen next.

His hands left my back, gliding up my arms, gently securing both sides of my neck. His thumbs stroked the hollow of my throat. My head fell back as I savored his touch. Back and forth and back and forth on my pulse that had gone mad.

He leaned forward until his lips were almost touching the side of my mouth. Almost.

“Kara,” he whispered. “Won’t you kiss me?”


Excerpted from Spitfire In Love by Isabelle Ronin. © 2019 by Isabelle Ronin. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author:

Isabelle Ronin is the author of Wattpad reader phenomenon CHASING RED. Her books have over 200 million reads online.

When she's not writing, Isabelle can be found hanging out in bookstores, cafes, and whenever possible, the beach. Isabelle lives in Manitoba, Canada.  https://www.isabelleronin.com/ 

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Dark Alpha's Awakening by Donna Grant ~ Review

There is no escaping a Reaper. I am an elite assassin, part of a brotherhood that only answers to Death. And when Death says your time is up, I’m coming for you…

Serving Death and the Reapers has been my life for centuries. I’ve always put my duty before everything, even my yearning for Death. But now, she’s fading – our foe is bent on destroying her and he will stop at nothing until he does. Death holds the key to our survival. I will do everything in my power to stop her from disappearing. For her, I will ensure we have the best fighting chance. For her…I will cross the divide keeping us apart.

I have been looking forward to Cael and Erith's story.  How does Death have someone of equal status to be with?  A Reaper?  It's an interesting thought.

Cael has loved Erith forever.  We never saw it happen, it just was from the first book in this series.  Erith has kept herself apart throughout and it's unclear how she feels.  We started to see her feelings as she is weakens with Bran draining her magic.  As a result, there is very little romance in this book.  It's just two people who have always loved each other finally getting a chance.

I feel like this book had a pacing issue.  Perhaps the author was attempting to make this book be able to be read stand alone or perhaps she just wanted to give Erith's back story but the beginning dragged.

I adore Cael and I was glad he got his story.  It was hard to watch him go through what had to happen but he was strong enough to withstand it.  It was also a way to bring him to Death's level.  No more on that.  But I do like the characters in this book, this series.  They are strong, full characters that I enjoy seeing time and time again.

It's interesting that Balladyn comes up so much in this series.  He is king of the Darks and we see him mostly in the Dark Kings series.  I often wonder if he will get his story or if he is the convenient bad guy forever.  He deserves his story and I think he'll get it.  It is his appearance here that makes me believe that.

Not my favorite of the series but a good read.  It does bring an arc of the series to an end but the world is well made.  It can hold more stories and I was glad to see more are planned.

Wouldn't read it stand alone, but it ties up this set of seven books well. 

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Stacking OUR Shelves ~ 5/19/19

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews.  Make sure to checkout her post with links to all the other participates.

Click covers for Goodreads links

For Review...

Thanks goes to...

Harlequin Books


Aurora Rising (The Aurora Cycle, #1)We Hunt the Flame (Sands of Arawiya, #1)The Coppersmith Farmhouse (Jamison Valley, #1)

That's what we added to our shelves this week! What do you think? What did you add to your stacks? Leave us a comment and link us up!

Saturday, May 18, 2019

The Revenge Plan by Linda Kage ~ Review

The Revenge PlanSource: ARC provided by the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.

The Revenge Plan by Linda Kage

After I caught my boyfriend cheating, I tried to be mature about it with an amicable split. But he took his retaliation too far, and I have officially had enough. No more Miss Nice Haven.

No one is allowed to lie to me, betray, embarrass, and devastate me, fill me with self-doubt, or put my future at risk, and expect to get away with it. He is going to feel my wrath.

Enter Wick Webster, his archenemy.

Nothing would provoke my ex more than to see me moving on with the one guy he hates most, so that’s exactly what I plan to do.

The only hitch in my brilliant scheme is Wick himself. He’s just gotta be all love-not-war and peace-is-the-only-way. He’s more concerned about helping me heal than seeking my sweet revenge.

And what the hell is it about his soothing presence and yummy looks that calls to me until I forget how much pain I’m in? He’s making it awfully hard to use and abuse him for my malicious means. The damn guy is making me fall for him.

I was excited to dive into this book for two main reasons: 1) It's by Linda Kage, and her books tend  to be great to the point of favorites. 2) Just based on the description and first chapter preview I saw before I officially started reading I knew I was in the perfect mood for this one. And both of those reasons turned out to be solid because 1) The Revenge Plan was great to the point of a favorite & 2) I was in JUST the mood for it!

First and foremost, I've got to talk about my favorite part of this book which was WICK. The Revenge Plan has a fair few awesome characters, but Wick is the shining star. He's kind and loyal and caring and has such a great sense of humor. He's sweet with his sisters. So attentive with Haven. And honestly I could sit here singing him praises all day because he's one of my favorite characters--and love interests--ever.

As I said, there were more awesome characters too. I liked Haven. She was nice. Wick's sisters are so cool and funny. The cameos from Haven's family were a highlight of the book. Partly because it's fun to connect the dots to the Forbidden Men series (one of my favorite series of all time that is 100% not necessary to read before this one because this one truly does stand alone, but you SHOULD read that series anyway because it is so good) and partly because I laughed quite a bit during those scenes. Lastly there's Wick's football friends, especially Cannon. I loved Cannon as a friends to Wick, and I also looooved Cannon and Haven's development together.

The romance was so well done--which actually ties in with the well executed plot. Haven and Wick's relationship grew in a way that was organic and sweet and I was so invested in. From Haven's breakup to them becoming roommates then friends then more, I was here for all of it and loved it so much. Another aspect of the plot that was done well was the Henry chapters. At first I was confused as to why there was a third POV. Then I was kind of disappointed because I thought I'd figured it all out. But THEN I realized I did not, in fact, know everything and...I was a fan. It was a great addition to the story and a nice way to give some backstory without info-dumping or being boring.

Overall, The Revenge Plan is one of those books that really hit the spot for me. A character I'm now obsessed with, a romance I was head over heels for, and a solid favorite read of the year. Whether this would be your first Linda Kage book or your twelfth, I definitely recommend picking up The Revenge Plan!

5 stars  - A well executed romance that had me head over heels!