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Spotlight plus Give-Away: All things Pretty by M Leighton

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ALL THINGS PRETTY Synopsis

Pretending to be something they’re not, afraid to trust anyone completely, destined to tear each other apart– this is the story of unlikely love and unbearable consequences.

Sig Locke is a cop. He was raised by a cop and all his brothers are cops. He bleeds blue, believes in right and wrong, and sees in black and white, never in shades of gray.

But that was before he met Tommi.

Tommi, with her long legs and bright green eyes, she captured Sig’s interest from the moment he saw her. Even after he discovered who she was–the girlfriend of a drug dealer, the beauty behind a criminal–he still found her utterly irresistible. What Sig doesn’t know, however, is that she has a secret even a cop can’t uncover.

Tommi Lawrence hasn’t had an easy life, and it only got more complicated the day she met Sig. She learned long ago that she can’t trust anyone. Her gut tells her that Sig is no exception, her heart tells her that he is. But that was before she found out his real identity.

Can love be forged in a fire of lies? Or will the truth destroy them both?

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Read the utterly swoon worthy EXCERPT

MLeighton Bio

New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author, M. Leighton, is a native of Ohio. She relocated to the warmer climates of the South, where she can be near the water all summer and miss the snow all winter. Possessed of an overactive imagination from early in her childhood, M. Leighton finally found an acceptable outlet for her fantastical visions: literary fiction. Having written over a dozen novels, these days M. Leighton enjoys letting her mind wander to more romantic settings with sexy Southern guys, much like the one she married and the ones you’ll find in her latest books. When her thoughts aren’t roaming in that direction, she’ll be riding horses, swimming in ponds and experiencing life on a ranch, all without leaving the cozy comfort of her office.

A note from M. Leighton: I love coffee and chocolate, even more so when they are combined. I’m convinced that one day they could be the basis for world peace. I also love the color red and am seriously considering dying my hair.

Twitter | Author Goodreads | Website | Facebook

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Review: After by Anna Todd

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Title: After
Series: After #1
Author: Anna Todd
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Publication Date:
Source: Review Copy
Rating: 3/5

Synopsis from Goodreads

There was the time before Tessa met Hardin, and then there’s everything AFTER… Life will never be the same. #Hessa

Tessa is a good girl with a sweet, reliable boyfriend back home. She’s got direction, ambition, and a mother who’s intent on keeping her that way.

But she’s barely moved into her freshman dorm when she runs into Hardin. With his tousled brown hair, cocky British accent, tattoos, and lip ring, Hardin is cute and different from what she’s used to.

But he’s also rude – to the point of cruelty, even. For all his attitude, Tessa should hate Hardin and she does—until she finds herself alone with him in his room. Something about his dark mood grabs her, and when they kiss it ignites within her a passion she’s never known before.

He’ll call her beautiful, then insist he isn’t the one for her and disappear again and again. Despite the reckless way he treats her, Tessa is compelled to dig deeper and find the real Hardin beneath all his lies. He pushes her away again and again, yet every time she pushes back, he only pulls her in deeper.

Tessa already has the perfect boyfriend. So why is she trying so hard to overcome her own hurt pride and Hardin’s prejudice about nice girls like her?

Unless…could this be love?

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REVIEW 

I’m at a complete loss as to where to start with this review; for one I would like to have a complete soapbox rant about Hardin but there were so much depth to him as a character I’m going to combine it all together, and two I never in a million years imagined myself reading a One Direction fanfic (hell must have frozen over LOL)

Told in first person from Tessa’s point of view. She is very analytical at the start, bordering on OCD, having lead a very sheltered life she is quiet and shy. She has been dominated by her overbearing mother, her life has been basically controlled with her mother projecting all her bitterness and regret onto Tessa. I really liked her from the beginning, even with her slightly judgemental tendencies :) For all of Tessa’s mothers faults she has always tried to provide what she thinks is best for Tessa, they have a complicated but close relationship maintained by Tessa’s desire to make her mother proud of her. Her father left when she was younger adding to her mother’s negativity.

College is a huge adjustment for Tessa, more so on a social, emotional and personal basis rather than the work. Being out from under her mother’s thumb, Tessa experience a type of freedom she has never known before, while it can be intoxicating Tessa manages to remain planted mostly in reality. Due to her mother’s domineering Tessa has lacks social skills making her an outcast. While she convinces herself she is happy the way her life is it is obvious underneath she is lonely and hesitant of people.

The biggest adjustment comes in the form of her tatted up roommate, Steph and her friends, including Hardin. Trouble with a capital T, Hardin is openly antagonistic from the offset, his defense mechanism in overdrive around Tessa. Is there a connection there? The chemistry between Tessa and Hardin is off the charts, instinctual and beyond control, is it pheromones at work or the soul-mate principle ;)

Now for my Hardin rant, OMG this guy absolutely messed with my head. He has a Jekyll and Hyde persona, he is one person with Tessa and another with his so-called friends. I was always questioning which personality was really him. Throw in his strained family situation alongside revelations about his childhood and you have one very messed up boy. I even think he may have sociopathic tendencies, showing little to no regret of his actions. He is so freaking complicated and volatile; at times I truly hated him while the snippets of his back-story played with my emotions, softening my attitude to him. Unfortunately, the inclusion of an alcoholic father and the way in which it has shapes children was uncomfortably realistic for me.

There were times when I literally wanted to shake Tessa into standing up for herself. Hardin really needed to be told to go take a hike at times. The constant love, hate, hurt cycle really messed with my head and my heart. While I was in full rant mode while reading there was no way I could put the story aside. It  is very compelling, in a twisted angst filled fashion :)

Aside from Tessa’s tendency to give-in to Hardin I really liked seeing her growing confidence as the story progressed. Especially regarding her looks and style. I also really liked how comfortable she was with Hardin’s family, although I did find it a little strange hat she would embed herself so thoroughly into their lives without Hardin. I didn’t know whether to admire her ability to love and be loved or whether to think of her as needy.

My anticipation to find out what happens next is killing me. Thank goodness it is only a small wait for the next book. I can’t go without saying, I’m totally going to bitch slap Molly if she carries on with her antics. Please Anna make something bad happen to her ;)

Spotlight plus Trailer: Stay With Me by Jennifer L Armentrout

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 STAY WITH ME Synopsis

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Wait for You and Be with Me comes a daring tale that pushes boundaries . . .

At 21, Calla hasn’t done a lot of things. She’s never been kissed, never seen the ocean, never gone to an amusement park. But growing up, she witnessed some things no child ever should.   She still carries the physical and emotional scars of living with a strung-out mother, Mona—secrets she keeps from everyone, including her close circle of college friends.

But the safe cocoon Calla has carefully built is shattered when she discovers her mom has stolen her college money and run up a huge credit card debt in her name. Now, Calla has to go back to the small town she thought she’d left behind and clean up her mom’s mess again. Of course, when she arrives at her mother’s bar, Mona is nowhere to be found. Instead, six feet of hotness named Jackson James is pouring drinks and keeping the place humming.

Sexy and intense, Jax is in Calla’s business from the moment they meet, giving her a job and helping her search for Mona. And the way he looks at her makes it clear he wants to get horizontal . . . and maybe something more. Before Calla can let him get close, though, she’s got to deal with the pain of the past—and some very bad guys out to mess her up if she doesn’t give them her mom.

Buy Links: Amazon/Barnes and Noble/iTunes/Kobo/ GooglePlay

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Jennifer L. Armentrout/J.Lynn Bio

# 1 NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.

Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optioned for a major motion picture and her Covenant Series has been optioned for TV.

She also writes adult and New Adult romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.

Links: Website/Facebook/Twitter/J. Lynn Goodreads/Jennifer L. Armentrout Goodreads

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Spotlight: For Now by Chelsea M Cameron

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UNOFFICIAL SYNOPSIS

Two people. A one-night stand. What could go wrong?

Javier Cruz definitely isn’t relationship material, but that suits Hazel Gellar just fine. She’s not a relationship girl and doesn’t plan on ever being one.

But after a mind-blowing, panty-ripping, bed-breaking night, she knows once isn’t going to be enough. Fortunately, Javi feels the same way. Soon, what started as just one night turns into a lot of nights, and Hazel doesn’t know what to do.

Will she and Javi make the choice to be together for longer than just right NOW?

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Author Information

Chelsea M. Cameron is a YA/NA New York Times/USA Today Best Selling author from Maine. Lover of things random and ridiculous, Jane Austen/Charlotte and Emily Bronte Fangirl, red velvet cake enthusiast, obsessive tea drinker, vegetarian, former cheerleader and world’s worst video gamer. When not writing, she enjoys watching infomercials, singing in the car and tweeting (this one time, she was tweeted by Neil Gaiman). She has a degree in journalism from the University of Maine, Orono that she promptly abandoned to write about the people in her own head. More often than not, these people turn out to be just as weird as she is.

Her New Adult Contemporary Romance titles include My Favorite Mistake, which has been bought by Harlequin along with a sequel, Deeper We Fall and Faster We Burn (April 20, 2013)

Her Young Adult books include Nocturnal, Nightmare and Neither, the first three books in The Noctalis Chronicles. The fourth and final book, Neverend will be out in 2013. Whisper, the first in The Whisper Trilogy is also available, with the second book in the series, Silence and the final book, LIsten coming out in 2014.

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Books I’ve Read: Unrequited by Melody Grace

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Image from Goodreads

Title: Unrequited
Series: Beachwood Bay #3.5 The Callahans #1
Author: Melody Grace
Publisher: Self Published
Publication Date: May 2014
Source: Review Copy
Rating: 3/5

Synopsis from Goodreads

You can be anyone for a night…

Alicia isn’t the kind of girl to kiss a total stranger up against the wall — no matter how devastatingly sexy he is. But reeling from a broken heart, she runs straight into the arms of Dex Callahan: rock star, bad boy, and the most seductive man she’s ever known.

Dex is looking for distraction, at any price. The innocent redhead is just what he needs to keep his demons at bay — but one taste of her sweetness isn’t enough. He needs to possess her, body and soul.

Two searching hearts. One night to discover the passion of a lifetime. Dex is determined to show Alicia the pleasure she’s been denied, but can she let go of her heartache and take a risk on the unknown?

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At first I was just really, really annoyed with Alicia. I felt as if she begrudged Hunter and Brit their happiness and was an evil false friend. I just couldn’t understand why she had (or thought she had) such deep feelings for Hunter when he hadn’t encouraged her in the slightest. the way Alicia was made me feel as if it undermined Brit in a way. After following Brit’s struggle in Unafraid I felt very protective of her and immediately disliked Alicia for wanting to take Hunter away from Brit.

However, as we were able to gain insight into Alicia’s thoughts it did provide a level of understanding. She is very naive and mostly extremely innocent, shy and vulnerable come to mind with Alicia on a personal level. Her professional demeanor is a complete contrast to that, cool, calm and collected. If felt as if Alicia lacked confidence especially when viewing herself as desirable. therefore, having un-returned feelings for Hunter was essentially ‘safe’ for her.

Dex is a whole other kettle of fish, totally confident in his sexuality he is drawn to Alicia’s naivety. Jaded from his rock star lifestyle and with deep haunting secrets that are only hinted at, Dex appears drawn to Alicia’s sweetness and innocence. For him, it looks as if he is seeking some sort of redemption by helping Alicia recover from her unrequited love of Hunter.

Unrequited lays the foundation for what looks like a sizzling spin-off to the main Beachwood Bay series.