Friday, August 7, 2020

Behind the Red Door by Megan Collins Blog Tour!


Publication: August 4, 2020

Publisher: Atria Books

Source: Publisher

Synopsis: 

 

The author of the “suspenseful, atmospheric, and completely riveting” (Megan Miranda, New York Times bestselling author) debut The Winter Sister returns with a darkly thrilling novel about a woman who comes to believe that she has a connection to a decades old kidnapping and now that the victim has gone missing again, begins a frantic search to learn what happened in the past.

When Fern Douglas sees the news about Astrid Sullivan, a thirty-four-year-old missing woman from Maine, she is positive that she knows her. Fern’s husband is sure it’s because of Astrid’s famous kidnapping—and equally famous return—twenty years ago, but Fern has no memory of that, even though it happened an hour outside her New Hampshire hometown. And when Astrid appears in Fern’s recurring nightmare, one in which a girl reaches out to her, pleading, Fern fears that it’s not a dream at all, but a memory.

Back home in New Hampshire, Fern purchases a copy of Astrid’s recently published memoir—which may have provoked her original kidnapper to abduct her again—and as she reads through its chapters and visits the people and places within it, she discovers more evidence that she has an unsettling connection to the missing woman. As Fern’s search becomes increasingly desperate, she hopes to remember her past so she can save Astrid in the present…before it’s too late.

Featuring Megan Collins’s signature “dark, tense, and completely absorbing” (Booklist) prose and plenty of shocking twists and turns, Behind the Red Door is an arresting thriller that will haunt you long after you turn the last page.



******


Even though you can go back home, sometimes you shouldn't...

Behind the Red Door is told from the POV of Fern. She is an interesting character to get to know. Fern is married, she's a social worker, and she is and extremely paranoid and anxious person. Fern second-guesses everything and almost always thinks the worst. She longs for the love and approval of her parents, especially her father. Considering all that she has gone through, I'm surprised Fern doesn't have more issues than she already does. Her going home again leads her to investigating the disappearance of Alice. This is where things start to pick up in the story for me. There is an air of mystery surrounding the town that Alice first disappeared from when she was a teenager and I immediately wanted to know what people were hiding and if they knew more than they were letting on.


I was curious by the first few chapters. The more I more suspicious everyone and everything seemed. That curiosity didn't end until the last page of the story. I wasn't super surprised by everything that occurred in Behind the Red Door, but I definitely did not expect those last couple of twists.
The writing is good, and the story flowed at a decent pace. Megan Collins has created a suspenseful mystery that not only involves a kidnapping, but she also explores the dynamics of family and the effects that the past can have on a person in the present. 

 

 


RATING:  3½ OUT OF 5.

 

 

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Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Stranger in the Lake by Kimberly Belle

 



Publication: June 9, 2020

Publisher: Park Row/Harlequin

Source: Publisher

 

 

Synopsis: 

 

Charlotte didn’t know her greatest risk was saying, “I do.”

When Charlotte married the wealthy widower Paul, it caused a ripple of gossip in their small lakeside town. They have a charmed life together, despite the cruel whispers about her humble past and his first marriage. But everything starts to unravel when she discovers a young woman’s body floating in the exact same spot where Paul’s first wife tragically drowned.

At first, it seems like a horrific coincidence, but the stranger in the lake is no stranger. Charlotte saw Paul talking to her the day before, even though Paul tells the police he’s never met the woman. His lie exposes cracks in their fragile new marriage, cracks Charlotte is determined to keep from breaking them in two. 

As Charlotte uncovers dark mysteries about the man she married, she doesn’t know what to trust—her heart, which knows Paul to be a good man, or her growing suspicion that there’s something he’s hiding in the water.

 

 

******



I've been in such a weird book funk lately, so I was very surprised when I not only read, but devoured Stranger in the Lake by Kimberly Belle. 

 

The story is told from the main character, Charlotte’s POV. I really liked Charlotte. I thought she was interesting and likeable. It was easy to understand her reasoning for marrying her husband even though the townspeople didn’t. 


The mystery was not easily guessed, which I was happy about. Some of the characters did make some odd choices though, so I started second-guessing almost everyone. It made it harder for me to guess who the real culprit was. 


This is the second book that I've read by this author and I really enjoyed it. It was a quick and entertaining read. And it didn't take long for things to start happening in the book. There were several surprises and twists to the story, and I enjoyed discovering each and every one of them. Like her previous book, Dear Wife, Kimberly Belle has created a story that is intriguing and grabbed my interest from the very first chapter. I am looking forward to seeing what she comes up with next.  

 

 

 

 

 

RATING:  3½ OUT OF 5.

 

 

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Thursday, July 9, 2020

The Rivals by Vi Keeland Sneak Peek!!!




Excited about Vi Keeland’s upcoming release,
The Rivals? Check out this SNEAK PEEK


Title: The Rivals
Author: Vi Keeland
Genre: Standalone Contemporary Romance 
Release Date: July 13, 2020



Blurb

The feud between Weston Lockwood and me started at the altar.
Only neither of us attended the wedding, and the nuptials happened decades before either of us was born.
Our grandfathers had been best friends and business partners, at least up until my grandfather’s wedding day—when his bride-to-be blurted out she couldn’t marry him because she was also in love with Weston‘s grandfather.
The two men spent years fighting over Grace Copeland, who also happened to be their third business partner.  But in the end, neither man could steal half of her heart away from the other.
Eventually, they all went their separate ways.  Our grandfathers married other women, and the two men became one of the biggest business rivals in history.
Our fathers continued the family tradition of feuding.  And then Weston and I did, too.
For the most part, we kept as much distance as possible.
Until the day the woman who started the feud died—and unexpectedly left one of the most valuable hotels in the world to our grandfathers to share.
Now I’m stuck in a hotel with the man I was born to hate, trying to unravel the mess our families inherited.
As usual, it didn’t take long for us to be at each other’s throats.
Weston Lockwood was everything I hated: tall, smart, cocky, and too gorgeous for his own good.  We were fire and ice. 
But that shouldn’t be an issue. Our families were used to being at war. There was just one minor problem, though.   Every time Weston and I fought, we somehow wound up in bed.







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Excerpt

Sophia

“What the hell?” I pressed the button on the elevator panel a second time. It illuminated, yet the car continued to sit there. So I jabbed my finger at it a third time. Finally, the doors started to glide closed. Just as they were about to shut completely, a shoe blocked them from closing. 
A wingtip shoe. 
Weston’s smiling face was there to greet me when the doors bounced open. 
My blood was near boiling. “So help me, Lockwood, if you try to get in this car, I can’t be responsible for what happens to you. I’m not in the mood anymore.” 
He entered the elevator anyway. “Come on, Fifi. What’s wrong? I’m just playing around. You’re taking things way too seriously.” 
I counted to ten in my head, but it didn’t help. Fuck it. He wanted to get a rise out of me? He was going to get one. The doors slid shut again, and I turned and backed him into a corner. Seeing my face, he at least had the decency to look a little nervous. 
“You wanna know what’s wrong? I’ll tell you what’s wrong! My father thinks I’m inept because I don’t have an appendage dangling between my legs. The man I spent the last eighteen months with was cheating on me with one of my cousins. Again. I hate New York City. I despise the Lockwood family. And you think you can get away with anything you want just because you have a big dick.” I jabbed my finger into his chest and punctuated each staccato word with another stab.  
“I’m  
Tired.  
Of.  
Men.  
My father.  
Liam.  
You. 
Every single fucking one of you. So leave me the hell alone!” 
Frazzled, I turned back around and waited for the door to open, only to realize we hadn’t started to move yet. Great. Just fucking great. I jabbed the button a few more times, closed my eyes, and took deep, cleansing breaths as we started to move. Halfway through breath three, I felt the heat of Weston’s body behind me. He had to have moved closer. I continued to try to ignore him.  
But the fucker still smelled good.  
How the hell could that be? Whose cologne lasted for—what had it been now?—twelve hours? After the gauntlet run he’d sent me on across town this morning, I probably smelled like BO. It pissed me off that the asshole smelled...fucking delicious.  
He moved closer, and I felt his breath tickle my neck.  
“So,” he whispered in a gravelly voice. “You think my dick’s big.” 
I turned and scowled at him. While this morning he’d been clean-shaven, he now had a five o’clock shadow all along his chiseled jaw. It gave him a sinister look. The suit that hugged his broad shoulders probably cost more than Liam’s entire sweater wardrobe. Weston Lockwood was everything I hated in a man—wealthy, good looking, cocky, arrogant, and fearless. Liam would hate him. My father already hated him. And at the moment, those were actually Weston’s strong points.  
While I struggled with my body reacting to his scent and how much I liked the stubble on his face, Weston slowly reached out and put a hand on my hip. At first, I assumed he thought he needed to steady me, as he had when I’d wobbled in the bar. Had I wobbled again? I didn’t think I had. But I must’ve. 
Though when his hand glided from my hip around to my ass, there was no misunderstanding his intention. He was not trying to help me stay on my feet. In my head, my immediate reaction was to scream at him, but somehow my throat felt too clogged to speak.  
I made the mistake of looking up from his jaw into his blue eyes. Heat flickered, turning them almost gray, and his eyes dropped to my lips.  
No.  
Just no. 
This was not happening.  
Not again. 
My heart thundered in my chest, and the blood in my ears roared so loudly I almost didn’t hear the ding of the elevator announcing that we’d arrived at my floor. Thankfully it snapped me out of whatever moment of insanity I’d slipped into.  
“I…I need to go.” 
It took all of my focus to put one foot in front of the other, but I managed to walk down the hall and make it to my room.  
Though… 
I wasn’t alone.






Author Bio


Vi Keeland is a #1 New York Times, #1 Wall Street Journal, and USA Today Bestselling author. With millions of books sold, her titles have appeared in over a hundred Bestseller lists and are currently translated in twenty-five languages. She resides in New York with her husband and their three children where she is living out her own happily ever after with the boy she met at age six.


Author Links


Saturday, June 27, 2020

Never Let Me Go by Kianna Alexander Cover Reveal and Giveaway!!!

 

Take a look at this beautiful cover of Kianna Alexander’s upcoming book, Never Let Me Go. If you enjoy single dad romances or just good romances in general, then you will want to keep reading. 

 

P.S. Make sure you enter below to win the first two books in her Southern Gentlemen series as well!

 

 



 

Expected Publication for Ebook: September 1, 2020


Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca



About Never Let Me Go:

 

Tender, emotional contemporary romance—you’ll fall in love with this band-of-brothers and the strong women they’re determined to win.

 

Architect Maxwell Devers is laser-focused on winning the contract to build a new cultural arts center--his biggest project yet. But as a single dad of a beautiful baby girl, he has to find some help if he’s going to stay on track.

 

Yvonne Markham is thrilled to get her first nanny assignment. She knows the high-paying job will speed her progress toward owning a child care center of her own. Maxwell’s daughter is a delight, and she quickly comes to love the bouncing baby girl. Falling for her handsome new boss, however, was not part of the plan…

 

Hang on to your heartstrings: This multicultural romance features a single father, a sweet baby daughter, and the nanny who falls in love with them both.

 


About Kianna Alexander:

 

Like any good Southern belle, Kianna Alexander wears many hats: loving wife, doting mama, advice-dispensing sister, and gabbing girlfriend. She's a voracious reader, an amateur seamstress and occasional painter in oils. Chocolate, American history, sweet tea and Idris Elba are a few of her favorite things. A native of the TarHeel state, Kianna still lives there with her husband, two kids, and a collection of well-loved vintage 80's Barbie dolls. For more about Kianna and her books, visit her website at: http://authorkiannaalexander.com/

 

 

 

ENTER TO WIN!!


Enter to win first two books in the Southern Gentlemen series:  https://bit.ly/2YbwtYp





Monday, June 1, 2020

If You Must Know by Jamie Beck Spotlight & Giveaway!!




Happy Book Birthday to Author Jamie Beck and her latest book, If You Must Know. Keep reading to find out more about the Author and her book. Be sure to enter the giveaway as well!!



Q&A with Bestselling Author Jamie Beck

How do you describe your newest novel If You Must Know?

This book is a “beach book” in the best sense. It’s not angsty, yet it has a page-turning plot and a bunch of interesting, relatable characters. I think it’s entertaining and heartfelt at the same time, which is exactly what many enjoy reading while on vacation.

What inspired the novel? 

The external plot came to me as a result of the influence of two people in my life. My dear friend’s husband is a forensic accountant, so some of his stories about how people hide money and flee their families provided one point of inspiration. The second is my mother’s best friend who, in her seventies, sold her house and bought a boat, which she and her husband live on full-time. The impetus for the oil-and-water sisters was to provide myself an opportunity to explore the sibling-rivalry dynamic.

Tell us about the two main characters in the story—sisters Amanda and Erin.

Amanda is the middle child. She’s diligent, earnest, hard-working, and generous. She wants the people she loves to be happy and feel her love. Her weakness is a deep-seated insecurity—a sense that she is not interesting enough to be lovable. This leads her to overlook when she is being taken for granted because her need to be pleasing is omnipresent.

Erin is the baby of the family and her late-father’s pet. She is outgoing, fun-loving, and views her average intelligence as a blessing (rather than lamenting that her siblings are smarter). She is willful and has her own way of moving through the world. The big weakness she has is her impulsiveness, whether with jobs or relationships. As she approaches her 30th birthday, she’s looking to mature and create a more stable life for herself.

What kind of relationship do the sisters have? 

I think they share a typical relationship insofar as their differences cause many misunderstandings and instill in each a sense of being judged by the other, and yet they do care about and love each other, too. They simply do not know how to be true friends and trust the other—at least not at the outset of this tale. 

This book focused on the main female characters growing and learning about themselves. What prompted this ‘women’s fiction’ approach to the story?

Partly market forces and partly my own need to stretch. At 53, it was becoming more difficult to write a 20-something woman facing the challenges of dating. The shift to women’s fiction allows me to write late-30 and early 40-something characters, which comes more naturally to me. I also enjoy exploring family and friendship dynamics, and absolutely love having endless options for story arcs (as opposed to having to follow a traditional romance arc).

What does your new Potomac Point series have in common with your previous books?

All my books to date have focused on critical relationships and some type of redemption theme. I find damaged people to be very interesting and believe that there is good in most everyone, so I prefer to populate my stories with flawed people who must confront their inner demons in order to be happy. My new books will also focus on relationships and redemption, but the non-romantic relationships (or even the relationship with one’s self) will be more central.

******

If You Must Know Excerpt

I rolled onto my side with a groan, coming face-to-face with one of my favorite family photos. We’d taken our annual family summer trip to Hilton Head—the one real splurge my dad had made sure we enjoyed every year. We had a tradition of having lunch at a little open-air cabana bar and restaurant called Coco’s on the Beach. 

Between the deck and the volleyball court in the sand stood a tall pole with colorful arrow-shaped signs pointing in different directions. Each one was painted with the name of a different city somewhere on the globe, along with the mileage to get there. We’d dream about all the places we might go, and after high school I’d had the chance to see many. In this picture, our whole family is standing around that sign, smiling at the camera. My dad has his hand on my shoulder, and if you look closely, you can see Amanda holding my hand. I must’ve been only five or six—young enough that she hadn’t given up trying to be my second mother. At the time, I’d felt smothered by her attention, but looking back, I’d also felt loved. 

I grabbed my phone and called my sister, but it went to voice mail. A heaviness pressed on me, but I couldn’t tell if it was from looking at that picture of our family that would never again be whole or from the fact that I’d disappointed my mom and sister today. 

They loved me in their way even if they couldn’t love and accept me as I am. My dad had, though, and to honor his memory and wishes for our family, I couldn’t continue to drift out of their lives as I’d been doing. 

After the beep, I said, “Hey, it’s moi. Surprise! My plans have changed and I’ve got a little time. If you get this message, let me know where you are and I’ll try to catch up.” 

I hit “End,” my feet restlessly kicking the foot of my bed. The small bedroom seemed claustrophobic, but I didn’t want to talk to Max. Not that I could avoid him in here, either, where his dirty laundry, sandals, and other items lay about. Rather than take a match to it all, I decided to organize some of his things to help with his packing. Hauling myself off the bed, I then went to the armoire to get to the vintage albums my dad had left me in his will. 

Some were fairly valuable, like the Beatles collection box set from 1982, valued at roughly a thousand bucks. Or the Led Zeppelin first pressing with the turquoise label, which should net around eight hundred or so dollars. U2’s Joshua Tree collection box set from 1987—maybe worth six or seven hundred. Then there were others worth less than one hundred dollars. But each one had infinite sentimental value. 

Every song resurrected a specific memory of time spent with my father playing cards, washing cars, grilling hot dogs … anything. Whatever he’d wanted to do, I’d done with him, and he’d always chosen the perfect background soundtrack for every activity. Those stolen moments had also been a great way to escape my mom’s endless lectures and demands. She’d never yelled at me for skipping out on chores or being messy when I’d been spending that time with him. Probably because he wouldn’t let her. 

At present, my restlessness matched the mood of a typical Bob Seger song, so I grabbed Beautiful Loser and slipped the record from its sleeve, resisting the urge to hug it as if it were my dad. I set it on the old turntable he’d also left me. As the few first drumbeats clangored, my heart kicked an extra beat or two—partly happy, partly sad. I glanced toward the bedroom door, picturing Max on the sofa, and then got to work. 

It didn’t matter where life led me next. I had faith because my own personal angel was looking out for me now. 

Que serĂ¡, serĂ¡.

******


About the Novel

Title: If You Must Know
Author: Jamie Beck
Release Date: June 1, 2020
Publisher: Montlake

Summary

Sisters Amanda Foster and Erin Turner have little in common except the childhood bedroom they once shared and the certainty each feels that her way of life is best. Amanda follows the rules—at the school where she works; in her community; and as a picture-perfect daughter, wife, and mother-to-be. Erin follows her heart—in love and otherwise—living a bohemian lifestyle on a shoestring budget and honoring her late father’s memory with a passion for music and her fledgling bath-products business.

The sisters are content leading separate but happy lives in their hometown of Potomac Point until everything is upended by lies that force them to confront unsettling truths about their family, themselves, and each other. For sisters as different as these two, building trust doesn’t come easily—especially with one secret still between them—but it may be the only way to save their family.



Author Biography


Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author Jamie Beck’s realistic and heartwarming stories have sold more than two million copies. She is a two-time Booksellers’ Best Award finalist and a National Readers’ Choice Award winner, and critics at Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, and Booklist have respectively called her work “smart,” “uplifting,” and “entertaining.” In addition to writing novels, she enjoys hitting the slopes in Vermont and Utah and dancing around the kitchen while cooking. Above all, she is a grateful wife and mother to a very patient, supportive family. Fans can get exclusive excerpts, inside scoops, and be eligible for birthday gift drawings by subscribing to her newsletter at http://eepurl.com/b7k7G5. She also loves interacting with everyone on Facebook at www.facebook.com/JamieBeckBooks.

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