Release Day Blitz: Ruin You (The Debt #3) by Molly O’Keefe

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Today we are sharing celebrating the release of RUIN YOU by Molly O’Keefe. This is the third contemporary romance title in The Debt series.  Links for RUIN YOU, and the previous books in the series, are below. The first book in the series, Lost Without You, is FREE for a limited time!

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Ruin You by Molly O’Keefe (The Debt, #3)
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SYNOPSIS

Simon

The only thing that stands in the way of my revenge is her.

The lying scheming daughter of the man who killed my parents. She has the secrets I need to bring down her father.

And I’ll do anything to get them. I will lie to her. Steal from her. Use her.
Ruin her.

It helps that our chemistry is explosive.

What I’m not expecting is for her to be so sweet. And so strong.

So…irresistible.

Penny

After so many years of lying and hiding, I finally have a place to call home. With people I can call a family. The Paintbrush Inn is my life now, and I won’t let anyone ruin it.

When sexy and world-weary Simon checks in to the Inn, I never expect him to glance my way. I’ve spent my whole life blending into the background. Being overlooked and ignored. It’s been helpful, even though it’s lonely. And he’s way out of my league.

But our attraction is powerful. Undeniable.

Dangerous.

Because I can’t let anyone close. If the secrets I keep were to be revealed, my whole life would be destroyed. But something about Simon makes me break all my own rules. I’m letting him in to my home, my body, my life, never expecting he has his own secrets.

His own lies.

When the truth comes out, we’ll both be ruined.

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ARC Review: Wheels Up (Out of Uniform #4) by Annabeth Albert

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Author: Annabeth Albert
Publication Date: November 6, 2017
Format: ARC
Page Length: 320 pages
My Rating: 4 / 5 stars

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SYNOPSIS

Their love is forbidden, but their hearts aren’t listening to rules and regulations.

Lieutenant Dustin Strauss is a reformed man. No longer a twentysomething hell-raiser, he’s his SEAL team’s new XO-and a man with a secret. Or seven. He’s kept his bisexual identity under wraps for years, along with his kinky side and a fondness for the military-themed semianonymous hookup website Joe4Joe. His latest chat buddy is more than a sexy online distraction-they’re taking their very not-safe-for-work relationship into real time.

Petty Officer Wes Lowe has a smart mouth, a take-charge attitude and an uncanny ability for making things go boom. The life of an enlisted man isn’t always enough to satisfy him, but one wild, no-questions-asked weekend with his online love comes close. When a transfer order comes in, Wes feels ready and centered. He’ll make a good impression on his new SEAL team and keep his growing feelings for Dustin on the down low.

But as they log more time online and some very real emotions surface, Dustin and Wes struggle to pretend they’re just a harmless fling. And when his commander introduces Dustin to his team’s newest member, they’re in for the shock of a lifetime…and a crushing disappointment: their difference in ranks means even a friendship without sexual contact could end their navy careers for good.

With their hearts on the line, Dustin and Wes may not survive their next mission, let alone find a way toward a future together.

Dustin Strauss is the older brother to Dylan, who found his HEA in book two titled At Attention. While Dylan had announced when he was very little that he was gay to the family, Dustin was always afraid to let his family know he’s bisexual. Dustin’s never been with a guy, but he’s been on a military-themed hookup app and has been chatting with a guy for the past six months.

The story starts out with Dustin receiving a text that they should meet up in the city while Dustin’s in town. They know certain things about one another, but not really know. They only learn each other’s names after six months of chatting. Knowing how the guys on app went wild for Navy SEALS, Dustin lied by omission in his profile that let other guys think he’s in the Marines. Wes also never mentioned he was a SEAL either. Well, Dustin and Wes do meet up one day and after a very steamy hot encounter where Wes called all the shots. Wes enjoys very much enjoys being the more dominant one in the relationship, and their dynamic works for them.

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Release Blitz + Giveaway: Wheels Up (Out of Uniform #4) by Annabeth Albert

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Author: Annabeth Albert
Publication Date: November 6, 2017
Publisher: Carina Press
Page Length: 320 pages
Subgenre: M/M Contemporary Military Romance

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SYNOPSIS

Their love is forbidden, but their hearts aren’t listening to rules and regulations…

Lieutenant Dustin Strauss is a reformed man. No longer a twentysomething hell-raiser, he’s his SEAL team’s new XO—and a man with a secret. Or seven. He’s kept his bisexual identity under wraps for years, along with his kinky side and a fondness for the military-themed semi-anonymous hookup website Joe4Joe. His latest chat buddy is more than a sexy online distraction—they’re taking their very not-safe-for-work relationship into real time.

Petty Officer Wes Lowe has a smart mouth, a take-charge attitude and an uncanny ability for making things go boom. The life of an enlisted man isn’t always enough to satisfy him, but one wild, no-questions-asked weekend with his online love comes close. When a transfer order comes in, Wes feels ready and centered. He’ll make a good impression on his new SEAL team and keep his growing feelings for Dustin on the down low.

But as they log more time online and some very real emotions surface, Dustin and Wes struggle to pretend they’re just a harmless fling. And when his commander introduces Dustin to his team’s newest member, they’re in for the shock of a lifetime…and a crushing disappointment: their difference in ranks means even a friendship without sexual contact could end their navy careers for good.

With their hearts on the line, Dustin and Wes may not survive their next mission, let alone find a way toward a future together.

EXCERPT

“So?” Wes prompted after she’d left again. “You don’t want me to hook you up with someone, even hypothetically, but what would you like tonight? Burger and watch the game? Or…”

“Or?” Dustin sounded more curious than off-put, which was good.

“Or…and I’m just throwing this out there…I’ve got a hotel room close to here. We could go hang there after we eat. Just talk. And stuff.”

“Define stuff.” Dustin fiddled with his paper napkin, but he hadn’t said no. And he was cautious, which was a good thing, smart. Another trait all the marines Wes knew had—they were wary, always ready for the next threat.

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Review: Bear, Otter, and the Kid (Bear, Otter, and the Kid #1) by T.J. Klune

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Author: T.J. Klune
Publication Date: August 12, 2011
Format: Paperback
Page Length: 350 pages
My Rating: 5 / 5 stars

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SYNOPSIS

Three years ago, Bear McKenna’s mother took off for parts unknown with her new boyfriend, leaving Bear to raise his six-year-old brother Tyson, aka the Kid. Somehow they’ve muddled through, but since he’s totally devoted to the Kid, Bear isn’t actually doing much living—with a few exceptions, he’s retreated from the world, and he’s mostly okay with that. Until Otter comes home.

Otter is Bear’s best friend’s older brother, and as they’ve done for their whole lives, Bear and Otter crash and collide in ways neither expect. This time, though, there’s nowhere to run from the depth of emotion between them. Bear still believes his place is as the Kid’s guardian, but he can’t help thinking there could be something more for him in the world… something or someone.

I feel like I should caveat this review that this book was published in 2011, because there are some highly problematic things in this book. Trigger warnings include the ableist words like the use of the r***** and the internalized homomisia (as well as the word f** from friends before being yelled at by a nine-year-old after more than 50% through the book).

Story-wise, I really liked this book. I’ve read four books now by the author, but I hadn’t read his debut novel. And his books aren’t for everyone. He has a distinct writing style. In this book, we’re told an entire story from only one character’s perspective. And the character gets lost in his own head a lot, so it’s possible to go pages of tangents with the character freaking out about something before we finally return to the story. Also, a large chunk of this book (maybe the first 25% or so) is told in a narration-type way of addressing the reader almost and then backing up in the story to bring the reader up-to-date on the current situation. Normally, for this author’s books I prefer the audiobooks, but just know that the narrator for book two drastically changes, and the same narrator is used for books one, three, and four.

This book is about Derrick McKenna, known to all his friends as “Bear”. He is possible the opposite of anyone you would expect someone named Bear to look like. He’s slim and he’s not overtly tall. The story starts with a letter from Bear’s mother. She has run away with Bear’s savings to live life with her latest boyfriend, and has only left $137.50 to his name. And Bear’s eight-year-old brother. Bear is seventeen-years-old and with his mother, his hopes and dreams of going to college and doing normal 17, 18, 19-year-old things are dashed because he has become the sole person who can look after Tyson, also known as “the Kid”. These chapters are devastating to read. Just utterly devastating.

…even if he’s not there to pick up the pieces later, I will always remember that he has at least given me this moment, this moment to break.

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ARC Review: Life on Pause by Erin McLellan

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Author: Erin McLellan
Publication Date: October 30, 2017
Format: ARC
Page Length: 290 pages
My Rating: 5 / 5 stars

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SYNOPSIS

Niles Longfellow is a nerd, and not the trendy type of nerd, either. He wears a historically accurate homesteader costume to work every day, has a total of one friend, and doesn’t know how to talk to guys. So when he gets a flat tire and the hottest hipster ever stops to help him, all Niles can think is that he’s wearing his stupid cowboy getup. Normally, Niles feels invisible to other men, but he’d take that invisibility any day over Rusty Adams seeing him in suede and fringe.

Rusty moved to Bison Hills to help his sister raise her daughter, and nothing is more important to him than that. He’s also fresh off a breakup, and isn’t prepared for anything complicated. But then he meets Niles. Rusty sees Niles as more than a clumsy, insecure guy in a costume. He sees a man who is funny, quirky, and unexpected.

Nothing about their connection is simple, though, especially the lies and insecurities between them. Niles doesn’t know if he can trust Rusty with his heart, and when Rusty’s sister decides to move away, Rusty doesn’t know if he can stay behind.

I LOVE THIS BOOK. LOVE. The cover really doesn’t tell you just how wonderful and lovely this book is, but everyone needs to go and check out this book!! We have a Native American main character and I love how he brings up his family’s heritage and how his family’s story is a part of the character.

The story takes place in a place called Bison Hills, Oklahoma. While Bison Hills isn’t a real place, it’s interesting to read books that’s away from the “big” US cities and drops us off in the middle of the United States. We first meet Niles Longfellow, a nerd who’s really into history and works at the local homestead museum dressed in a historically accurate costume. One day, he gets a flat tire leaving work and catches the attention of Rusty Adams. Rusty notices Niles’ car and, being the good samaritan that he is, goes and helps Niles. Rusty isn’t from around Bison Hills, only moving there with his sister to help her raise her daughter, and Niles decked out in his costume is definite cause to catch Rusty’s eye.

Niles and Rusty bond over some adorably nerdy things. Like Firefly and Battlestar Galactica. The pretense of watching these two shows together in order to be friends in a small Oklahoma town slowly escalates into something more. But this is not just a cute book about two nerds falling in love in a small little town. Oh no. This is a story that will wrench your heart out and make you feel all the feels.

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ARC Review: Off the Ice (Hat Trick #1) by Avon Gale and Piper Vaughn

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Author(s): Avon Gale and Piper Vaughn
Publication Date: October 30, 2017
Format: ARC
Page Length: 283 pages
My Rating: 5 / 5 stars

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SYNOPSIS

Tristan Holt is nothing if not pragmatic. Despite a flourishing career as a defenseman for the Atlanta Venom, Tristan knows he can’t play hockey forever. One day he’ll retire—if an injury doesn’t force him to hang up his skates first. His backup plan? Finishing his business degree. But he doesn’t count on a very inappropriate attraction to his standoffish sociology professor, Sebastian Cruz.

Sebastian is on the bottom rung of the Sociology Department at Georgia State. He has his sights set on tenure, and he can’t afford to be distracted, especially not by a sexy student with a body straight out of Sebastian’s dreams. No matter how much Tristan tempts him, that’s one line Sebastian won’t cross. At least not until summer classes end. After that, everything is fair game.

But Sebastian lives loud and proud, and Tristan is terrified of being the first out player in the NHL. Neither of them can afford to risk their hearts when they can’t imagine a happily ever after. The problem is, unlike hockey, when it comes to love, there are no rules.

I have to say, I really love the Avon Gale and Piper Vaughn collaborations. First with Permanent Ink (another series) and now with Off the Ice. Tristan Holt is a realist and recognizes that he can’t keep playing in the NHL for the Atlanta Venom forever. He doesn’t want to spend the rest of his life after as an announcer on local TV. So, he decides that between seasons, he would take a couple classes towards his unfinished business degree. He catches the eye of the professor in his Sociology class, Sebastian Cruz. Sebastian is a non-tenured professor who immediately takes a disliking to Tristan. Sebastian thinks Tristan is hot, but will be a slacker in his class.

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Review: Lost Soul: AJ’s Burden (Healing Hearts #4) by Nicky James

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Author: Nicky James
Publication Date: October 22, 2017
Format: E-Book
Page Length: 230 pages
My Rating: 3 / 5 stars

Amazon | Goodreads

SYNOPSIS

What does rock bottom look like to you?

AJ Silva is about to find out. His life has been spiralling the drain for the past year, and if he doesn’t find a way out soon, he may die on the streets of San Francisco. Drowning in a severe drug addiction, battling every day to survive, AJ doesn’t know where to turn. His past haunts him in more ways than one, and leaves him both grasping and begging for change, while fearing his future. All AJ knows how to do is chase one problem away with another. How can you win the war when your enemy is yourself?

Trystain Larsson is an addict. Five years ago, he discovered rock bottom first hand. Since that dreaded day, he’s worked his recovery with everything he has. Helping others who’ve fallen victim to drugs gives him hope for a better tomorrow. If he can save even one person from that life, it will mean victory.

When AJ lands at his doorstep, Trystain gets more than he bargained for. Not only is AJ at the end of his rope, but there is something darker going on.

Coming off drugs is not an easy task, and with AJ, Trystain has his work cut out for him. During their time together, a bond that goes deeper than friendship grows.

Will mistakes from the past be barriers for the future? It’s hard to move forward, when you can’t stop looking back.

**TRIGGER WARNING** This book deals with addiction and has on-page drug use.

This is the first book in the series that doesn’t have any cameos from the previous books. This place in California, a far away place from the characters we know and love. It does make me sad. We met AJ in book three, The Escape: Soren’s Saga. He was the oldest of the boys who had worked at the a club who doubled in sex trafficking. Life hasn’t been easy for AJ, and the journey for AJ’s happiness is only just beginning.

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