Blurred Lines by Lauren Layne | Blog Tour with Excerpt

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BLURRED LINES
Lauren Layne
Releasing Aug 25th, 2015
Loveswept
In a novel that’s perfect for fans of Abbi Glines and Jessica Sorensen, USA
Today 
bestselling author Lauren Layne delivers a sexy take on the timeless
question: Can a guy and a girl really be “just friends”?
When Parker Blanton meets Ben Olsen during her freshman year of college, the
connection is immediate—and platonic. Six years later, they’re still best
friends, sharing an apartment in Portland’s trendy Northwest District as they
happily settle into adult life. But when Parker’s boyfriend dumps her out of
the blue, she starts to wonder about Ben’s no-strings-attached approach to
dating. The trouble is, even with Ben as her wingman, Parker can’t seem to get
the hang of casual sex—until she tries it with him.
The arrangement works perfectly . . . at first. The sex is mind-blowing, and their
friendship remains as solid as ever, without any of the usual messy romantic
entanglements. But when Parker’s ex decides he wants her back, Ben is shocked
by a fierce stab of possessiveness. And when Ben starts seeing a girl from
work, Parker finds herself plagued by unfamiliar jealousy. With their
friendship on the rocks for the first time, Parker and Ben face an alarming
truth: Maybe they can’t go back. And maybe, deep down, they never want to.
 
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EXCERPT

I scoop up the last bite of cereal from my bowl as I stand. “We should probably get going,” I say, still chewing. “IKEA gets crazy on Saturdays, and I don’t want to risk them being out of stock on the extra-large shelves.”

“You have that many dolls?” Liz asks, looking torn between being creeped out and feeling completely sorry for me.

“Fifty-seven and counting,” I say, straight-faced. “And actually, Ben, if you’re going to be a while, I might just run upstairs and brush their hair? I noticed last night Polly was starting to develop a tangle.”

Ben drains his coffee, pushes back from the counter, and shakes his head at me. “You poor, sick weirdo.”

Then he turns to Liz, putting his hands on her skinny waist and pulling her forward with an apologetic smile. “You mind if I take a raincheck on breakfast?”

I barely hide the snort. In Ben’s world, raincheck is a synonym for I’m going to intentionally lose your phone number.

In under a minute, Ben is nudging Liz out onto the front porch, and, impressively, she doesn’t even look pissed. I follow them out, just to be annoying, watching as he whispers something in her ear. Her eyes go wide and sympathetic and she gives me an It’s gonna be okay, little buddy smile. She heads toward the sidewalk with a wave.

“What did you just tell her?” I ask, taking a sip of my coffee as we watch her leave.

“I told her you were an abandoned orphan and that the only thing your birth mother left you with was a doll named Polly. Hence the sad obsession.”

I shake my head. “You know I’m going to have to rewrite the house rules. And No dolls will so be going on there.”

Liz turns back and gives one last wave. Both Ben and I wave back, and I can’t help myself. “Enjoy your walk of shame!” I call after her, my voice sweet as sugar.

Liz’s head snaps back as though trying to determine if she heard me correctly, but Ben puts a hand over my face and shoves me back into the house before closing the front door.

He absently rubs a hand over his abs as he looks me up and down.

“You should change. You can’t wear your ratty booty shorts and that ugly T-shirt to IKEA.”

“First of all, you can absolutely wear your rattiest and ugliest T-shirts to IKEA. That’s pretty much the IKEA dress code. And second, we’re not going to IKEA. Really, are you getting so comfortable with your lies that they become fact in your mind?”

“We are going to IKEA,” he says, running both hands through his short brown hair before heading toward the stairs.

“For what?” I ask.

“I need a new dresser.”

“What’s wrong with your old dresser?”

“It broke.”

I wrinkle my nose. “How the hell do you break a dresser?”

He shoots me a look over his shoulder and wiggles his eyebrows.

It takes me only seconds before I put the pieces together. “Airhead?” I hitch a thumb over my shoulder at the departed female. “You banged her against the dresser?”

“Hey, she was unusually tall, which gave me the unusual opportunity and prime angle to—”

I slap my hands over my ears and start singing Billy Joel’s “Piano Man,” my default protective gesture whenever Ben gets a little too colorful with descriptions of his sexual antics.

Another house rule: Parker absolutely does not want to know what happens in Ben’s bedroom.

“Hey, do you and Lance have plans today?” he asks.

“Maybe you should have asked that before you mandated an IKEA trip. But no, he’s got an all-day study group.”

Lance is getting his MBA from the University of Portland.

“Cool. Let’s grab lunch after.” He heads into his bedroom without looking at me.

Lunch, huh?

I narrow my eyes and sprint up the stairs after him, pushing open his door before he can shut it in my face.

Sure enough, his dresser is definitely leaning unhealthily to one side, and I count two, no make that three, condom wrappers.

He pulls a green polo from the tiny closet in the corner and looks around his messy floor until he finds his jeans.

I wait expectantly.

“What?” he asks.

“Lunch?” I lift my brows. And wait for the explanation.

Ben scratches idly at his slightly stubbled chin. Sharing a bathroom with the guy, I know he shaves every morning, but the stubble seems to be perpetual.

“Well, you know that girl I dated a couple weeks ago? Kim?” he asks. “She wanted me to go to her sister’s engagement brunch, and I told her I was busy all day. But she’s just crazy enough to stop by and see if I’m actually out of the house, so I thought we should be elsewhere. . . .”

I hold up a hand. “Fine. I’ll be your alibi. But I get to pick the restaurant, and you’re buying. Oh, and you have to put the toilet seat down every day for an entire week.”

He raises his hand as though wanting to say something in class. “I’d like to add a house rule: Parker isn’t allowed to tell Ben how to pee.”

You don’t make the house rules. I do. And I didn’t tell you how to pee,” I say exasperatedly as he wrenches open a dresser drawer and pulls out a pair of boxers. “I’m trying to do your future wife a favor by teaching you how not to be a pig.”

He inches by me into the hallway. “Another house rule: Parker shalt not say profanities as future wife to a dedicated bachelor.”

“You’re not a dedicated bachelor. You’re just a typical horny twenty-four-year-old dude, and, again, you don’t make the house rules—hey!”

He shuts the door to our shared bathroom in my face, and too late I realize that I’d missed all the classic signs of a skilled Ben Olsen diversion. He’d just wanted to beat me into the bathroom.

“Don’t use all the hot water!” I shout, pounding my palm on the door.

The door opens just enough for me to see one blue eye blinking back at me. “Didn’t you say Polly had a tangle? You better go get on that.”

The door shuts again, and I pound a second time. “Remember, the green towel is mine. The white one is yours.”

I wait for confirmation, but there’s only silence.

“Ben, I know you can hear me! Don’t ‘accidentally’ use mine just because yours smells funny.”

More silence.

Damn it. He is so planning to use my towel.

So, yeah, my best friend is a guy. Doesn’t mean I have to like it all the time.

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Lauren Layne is the USA Today
Bestselling author of contemporary romance.
 
Prior to becoming an author, Lauren
worked in e-commerce and web-marketing. In 2011, she and her husband moved from
Seattle to New York City, where Lauren decided to pursue a full-time writing
career. It took six months to get her first book deal (despite ardent
assurances to her husband that it would only take three). Since then, Lauren’s
gone on to publish ten books, including the bestselling Stiletto series, with
several more on the way in 2015.
 
Lauren currently lives in Chicago with her husband and spoiled
Pomeranian. When not writing, you’ll find her at happy hour, running at a
doggedly slow pace, or trying to straighten her naturally curly hair.
 


 
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30 Days by Christine d’Abo | Blog Tour PLUS a Paperback Giveaway of 30 Days

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30 DAYS
Christine d’Abo
Releasing July 28th, 2015
Kensington 

For years, Alyssa has been going to bed with a memory. Is she ready to wake up with a fantasy?

Some people wait their whole lives to find their soul mate, but not Alyssa Barrow. She met Rob at sixteen, and they were set to live happily ever after—until he became ill. In his final days, Rob urged his beautiful, young wife not to abandon happiness—or pleasure. He even left her a special gift, a sexy game plan to help her move on: Thirty cards with instructions for thirty days of passion. You’ll know when the time is right, he’d said. Now it’s two years later, and when Alyssa meets her hot new neighbor, Harrison Kemp, she begins to think the right time is right now…

From his sculpted thighs to his devilish grin, Harrison is the kind of man women want. Before she can lose her nerve, Alyssa tells Harrison about her long-ignored cards…and asks him to help her fulfill them. It’s a favor he’s more than happy to, um, perform. With his skillful touch, and the hot press of his lips against her skin, Alyssa finds herself re-awakening to life—and a host of other sensations. But what began as not-so-innocent fun soon grows into true intimacy, and Alyssa realizes she’s opening herself up not just to sex…but to love. When it comes to a future with Harrison, what’s really in the cards?

Saucy, heartwarming, and insightful, 30 Days explores the agony—and the ecstasy—of starting over, and how a little encouragement, and a little courage, can go a long way…

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 EXCERPT

I huffed, then licked my lips before I finally slipped my finger beneath the edge and tore the paper open.

Hidden inside was a single piece of paper wrapped around a bundle of index cards. I ignored the cards for the time being and spread open the paper. I took a moment before I could read the note. This was something new from Rob and my heart broke a little bit more. Those invisible fingers squeezed at my chest.

Alyssa.

I love you. I know you love me. I’m glad you’re ready to move on and start having some fun once again. I also know you well enough to realize you’ll only go so far before you stop. Don’t do that. And for God’s sake, don’t get into a serious relationship right away either. I always thought you hadn’t taken enough time to figure out who you were as a person before we hooked up. We jumped into being a couple and lucky for us we worked and it was awesome.

You always said you never regretted being with me so young, but you also didn’t date anyone else. You didn’t sleep with anyone else. I took that experience from you and I always hated that you didn’t get to explore. I wanted to give you my permission to go out there and experiment. Have fun. Fool around and don’t feel the least bit guilty about it.

I thought I might also offer you some suggestions on how to get started.

Humor me, okay.

I’ve had a lot of time on my hands recently. When you weren’t here, I started this little project. I call it Alyssa’s 30 Days of Sex. Please don’t have sex thirty days in a row because I’ll be jealous. Not really. If you can do that, go for it. Seriously though, jealous.

Anyway, even if you don’t use any of these cards, I had a lot of fun imagining you enacting them. You’ll read them and think OMG boy dreams! That’s cool. They are. Change them up if you want.

Even when you weren’t with me, you made me happy. I’m going to stop now before I get sappy. Go get laid and enjoy the kinky sex.

Love you, baby.

Rob

I laughed. It was such a Rob thing to have done. I had no difficulty picturing him coming up with ideas for his cards while going through his chemo. Come to think of it, that explained most of the Internet pop-ups I’d been forced to clean off his laptop after he passed.

Sex cards. He wrote me freaking sex cards. I fell in love with him all over again. My best friend and lover was giving me advice on how to hook up with other people from beyond the grave. The idea was a mix of weird and sweet, the perfect descriptor for him.

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Christine d’Abo is a romance novelist and short story writer, with over thirty publications to her name. She loves to exercise and stops writing just long enough to keep her body in motion too. When she’s not pretending to be a ninja in her basement, she’s most likely spending time with her husband, daughters, and her two dogs.

The Highlander’s Choice by Callie Hutton | Book Review and Giveaway

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The Highlanders ChoiceThe Highlander’s Choice by Callie Hutton

Marriage Mart Mayhem, #5

Releasing July 14, 2015

Entangled Scandalous

SYNOPSIS

The Scottish Highlands, 1815

Lady Sybil Lacey is every inch an English woman. She’s horrified her best friend is wedding a barbarian Scot.  For aren’t Scots naught but brutish, whiskey-swilling lechers? So to find herself secretly attracted to the tall and devastatingly handsome Scottish laird of Bedlay Castle is quite disconcerting…

Liam MacBride is convinced that English ladies are silly sassenachs who think of nothing but social events and clothes. So why is he intensely drawn to Lady Sybil? All they do is quarrel…until loathing turns into undeniable lust.

A tempestuous, fiery romance between an English lady and a Scottish laird cannot end well.

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Check out the ‘Marriage Mayhem’ Series on Goodreads

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5 Stars!

Why I have not heard of Callie Hutton’s work is beyond me! This author needs more exposure to all historical romance reader fanatics. ‘The Highlander’s Choice’ is the fifth book in Hutton’s ‘Marriage Mart Mayhem’ series, and the story revolves around Lady Sybil Lacey, an Englishwoman, and Laird Liam MacBride, a full-bred Scotsman. Both have their own reservations and opinion about the English and the Scots. Who could forget the historic battle of Culloden where many Scotsman lost their lives armed only with their swords against the cannons of the English. It was a blood bath! And that wasn’t the end of it. After Culloden, Scots had to flee their lands, lose their livelihood, and even to the extent of almost eradicating their rich history!

Lady Sybil and Laird Liam’s relationship did not start on a good footing. Both despised each other because of their heritage. Both of them are determined to dislike each other by bickering and testing each other’s tolerance despite of the growing attraction rising between them. But when they start to set aside their differences and embrace the beauty of Scotland together, would this two people finally see past their heritage and really get to know the person for who they are?

It’s a pretty exciting and thrilling story for me! Prejudice and stereotype attitude still exists in our society whether we like it or not, but it also teaches us that we can look past those attitude by knowing that person for who he/she is. You’ll never know that in those few minutes of conversation, that person you once judged before knowing may turn out to be one of your greatest friend and ally. Although, this is targeted more for avid readers of romance, I think people should give this book a chance and learn from the two characters in the novel on how to deal with differences (such as race, heritage, culture, religious belief, etc.). Maybe at the end of the story, we’ll realize what we’ve been doing wrong all these years and start to live a more peaceful and harmonious life.

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CallieHutton The USA Today bestselling author of The Elusive Wife, Callie Hutton, writes both Western Historical and Regency romance, with historic elements and sensory details (The Romance Reviews). She also pens an occasional contemporary or two. Callie lives in Oklahoma with several rescue dogs, two adult children, and daughter-in-law (thankfully all not in the same house), and her top cheerleader husband of thirty-eight years. She also currently waits with bated breath for the birth of twin grandsons. Callie loves to hear from readers, and would welcome you as a friend on Facebook.

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The Kiss That Launched 1000 GIFs by Sheralyn Pratt

Kiss that Launches 1000 gifts by sheralyn pratt

The Kiss That Launched 1,000 Gifs by Sheralyn Pratt

Each weekday from 2:00-4:00 p.m., Grace and Ashton cohost Battle of the Sexes, a radio program arguing the he-said/she-said issues of the day. Their fiery debates often have listeners wondering if there’s more to their relationship than just talk, even though Grace has been dating Phillip, Mr. Tall, Dark, and Perfect, since long before she ever met Ashton Miller.
Yet when news comes that Battle of the Sexes is on the bubble for cancellation, Grace and Ashton need to step up their efforts to engage their audience to keep the show alive. When a charity organization approaches them and proposes that the two of them kiss for a fund raiser, Grace and Ash agree to kiss for a good cause. A kiss is just a kiss, right?

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Author Sheralyn Pratt

Sheralyn’s first job was as a karate instructor, which taught her that practice does not make perfect; practice makes habit–good or bad. Martial arts also taught Sheralyn that a master is simply a person who can effortlessly do all the actions a beginner finds difficult or maybe even impossible.

Sheralyn has worked in many fields throughout her life, but her 12 years as a karate instructor have shaped how she does everything, including writing and mentoring. She likes to keep things light and fun, but she’s also aware that life is journey and that if you’re going to buy a book, your life should better for it.

So, fiction or nonfiction, know that each of Sheralyn’s books are designed to take you to a new place. Maybe that book is designed to help you escape for a few hours, or maybe it’s a book designed to teach you a new skill. Either way, Sheralyn hopes it’s unforgettable…in a good way. 😉

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$25 Blog Tour Giveaway

Enter to win an Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 8/5/15

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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The Perfect Bargain by Julia London | Tour + Giveaway

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THE PERFECT BARGAIN

How to Marry a Highlander
# 1

By: Julia London writing as Jessa McAdams
Releasing June 30, 2015
Entangled: Lovestruck

American lass seeks brawny Scot…

As if being newly single isn’t brutal enough, Sloane Chatfield’s friends are getting obnoxious about setting her up. When Sloane insists she’s waiting for a certain sexy fictional Highlander to come along, her friends surprise her with a trip to Scotland to find her a new boyfriend. She’d rather have a root canal. But if she can find a Highland hunk to “break her heart” before her friends arrive…

In a remote Highland village, Galen Buchanan is struggling to keep the family pub afloat. Everything is falling apart, he’s running out of money, and now there’s an opinionated American lass parked at his best table, driving him mad. But then Sloane asks Galen to be her pretend Highland boyfriend…and offers him enough money to save the pub. It’s only for a few days, he figures. What’s the worst that could happen?

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EXCERPT

“I happen to be quite good at sizing people up, and you, lass, are spoiled. Donna take it personally—it’s an American thing,” he said casually, as if that were a foregone conclusion.

Now Sloane was indignant.“Watch yourself, Braveheart,” she said, poking him in the arm. “And anyway, how is that even remotely an American thing?”

“It’s the way Americans view the rest of the world,” he said. “Americans think the Loch Ness monster exists, and that we all live in the Highlands in a Braveheart movie. Or, you all read Trainspotting in school and think we’re all on drugs. You think Scots believe in unicorns and our national pastime is the caber toss, and our calendars are manly men in kilts holding kittens.”

“Is there really a calendar like that?” she asked, perking up. If there was, she’d be picking one up before she headed back to the States.

All she got in response to that was an I-told-you-so look.


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Julia London is the New York
Times, USA Today, and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author of more than thirty
romantic fiction novels. She is the author of the popular Cabot Sisters
historical series, including The Trouble with Honor, The Devil Takes a Bride,
and the The Scoundrel and the Debutante. She is also the author of several
acclaimed contemporary romances, including The Cedar Springs series, and the
recent Homecoming Ranch, Return to Homecoming Ranch, and The Perfect Homecoming.
Julia has added a short contemporary series to her titles as well, including
The Perfect Bargain, writing under the name Jessa McAdams.
 
Julia is the recipient of the RT
Bookclub Award for Best Historical Romance and a four time finalist for the prestigious
RITA award for excellence in romantic fiction. To keep up with all the Julia
London news, please visit 
http://www.julialondon.com. Follow her on
Facebook at 
http://www.facebook.com/julialondon
 
 

 

Kick, Push by Jay McLean | Cover Reveal and a Giveaway

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COVER REVEAL

KICK, PUSH – by Jay McLean

Series: The Road #2

Cover reveal date: July 14, 2015

Release Date: August 4, 2015

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BLURB

There’s a single defining moment within every skater.

It lasts only a second. Two if you’re good.

Three if you’re really good.

It’s the moment you’re in the air, your board somewhere beneath you, and nothing but wind surrounds you.

It’s the feeling of being airborne.

The sixteen-year-old version of me would’ve said it was the greatest feeling in the world.

Then at seventeen, I had my son.

And every single second became a defining moment. Even the ones that consisted of heartbreak when his mother left us.

 

Seventeen. Single. Dad.

That’s what my life became.

Yet, every day, I managed to find that feeling of being airborne.

Or at least I convinced myself I did.

But I lied—to myself and to everyone around me.

Until she showed up; Tanned skin, raven dark hair, and eyes the color of emeralds.

You know what sucks about being in the air?

Coming down from the high.

Sometimes you land on the board and nail the trick.

Then kick, push, and coast away.

Other times you fall.

You fall hard.

And those are the times when it’s not as easy to get back up, dust off your pads and try again.

Especially when the girl with the emerald eyes becomes your drug…

And you become her poison.

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ALSO AVAILABLE IN THIS SERIES

#1 Where the Road Takes Me

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UK: http://amzn.to/wtrtmuk

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AUTHOR BIO

Jay is an avid reader, writer, and most of all, procrastinator. When she’s not doing any of those things, she can be found running after her two little boys, or devouring some tacky reality TV show. She writes what she loves to read, which are books that can make her laugh, make her smile, make her hurt, and make her feel. For publishing rights (Foreign & Domestic) Film, or television, please contact her agent, Erica Spellman-Silverman, at Trident Media Group.

AUTHOR LINKS Facebook | Fan Group | Web | Twitter | Instagram | Newsletter |

 

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** $15 Amazon gift card with the cover reveal scheduled on my author page www.facebook.com/jaymcleanauthor**