Author Spotlight- Elizabeth McKenna: First Crush, Last Love

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This is one of those books I really wish I could read. If I wasn’t still recovering from a concussion, I would love to read this book. But as it is, this book will be added to my to-read list and I will have to wait until I am healed. 

1) When did you know first discover you wanted to be a writer and why writing?
Like most authors, I have always been a reader. I was a shy child (still am) and book characters were my friends. I did well in English class, which led me to a Journalism major in college. Deep down, I always had the fantasy of being a successful author, but when I graduated college back in 1989, self publishing wasn’t a viable option. There were bills to pay and later, children to raise, so I took the practical route.  I’m a technical writer and editor for a software company, so I write pretty dull stuff during the day. About 10 years ago, I decided I wanted to write fiction. It is a nice escape from the daily world.

2) Tell us about your book and why you wrote it?
FIRST CRUSH, LAST LOVE started out as a fictional memoir. Throughout the various crises I have faced, I often mumbled, “This will make a great book someday.” I wrote this story to exorcise the demons in my head. It took four long years to finish, and there were times that I thought I wouldn’t reach the end, but then a lucky thing happened – the characters took on their own identities and their storylines evolved away from my life. Some scenes are still true to my past, though it is not important which ones. I will tell you that I did obsess over a boy throughout high school. I did move on and marry someone else, which ended in failure. And, just like Jessie, I did marry that high school crush and we are living happily ever after.

3) What message or lasting thought do you hope your readers will take away from your book?
Making mistakes is part of life, but if you can live through the rough times, you will be stronger. And never give up on happiness. You can find your last love.

4) What author and/or what book has had the greatest impact on your life?
Nora Roberts turned me on to romance books. Before I read hers, I kind of looked down on the genre as being so unrealistic. But after I lived several decades, I realized that the world could use more romance books and happily ever afters.

5) Can you offer any advice for beginning writers or those trying to get published
Learn about story structure and find a professional editor for your book. Also, realize that not everyone will like your book. You will need to have tough skin. I have gotten one star and five star reviews on the same day. It’s just part of the job.


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Published: August 1, 2017
Pages: 314

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Book Links:
Ebook: $0.99 (US) at Amazon and Barnes & Noble 
Paperback: $8.99 (US) at CreateSpace and Amazon

Synopsis:
Remember your first crush? How your heart raced and your cheeks flushed whenever you saw him? Jessie Baxter does, and it’s happening again. Ten years ago, despite her best efforts, Lee Archer wanted to be just friends. Now, he wants more, but Jessie’s still recovering from a psycho ex-husband. Can she learn to trust again and make her first crush into her last love?

Elizabeth McKenna’s latest novel will have you remembering the angst of high school, the grief of a failed relationship, and the happiness of true love.

Excerpt:
In the main banquet hall of Penbrook’s Restaurant, the band closed their first set with a slow song, and the Class of 1984 and their spouses headed to the dance floor. Jessie hadn’t slow-danced since her wedding reception and her mood turned bitter at the memory. She downed the rest of her drink. Love sucked. That was the bottom line.

She smelled Lee before she saw him. His clean, shower-fresh scent conjured up more memories. Sitting behind him in classes because “Baxter” came after “Archer,” she had breathed in his pheromones as if her life depended on it.

From behind, he nudged her shoulder with his own. “Hi there.”

His European-cut, black suit and steel-gray tie made him look both elegant and handsome. She wished for a blast of cool air to dry the drops of perspiration breaking out across her upper lip.

She swiped at the wetness and gave him a half smile. “Hi back.”

He cleared his throat, and she thought his soft green eyes shifted, but she knew that couldn’t be possible. It had to be a trick of the flickering dance lights, because gods didn’t get nervous.

“You look great. Blue is definitely your color.” His eyes traveled her royal blue silk sheath dress. “Definitely.”

The connection between her brain and mouth broke, rendering her mute.

He didn’t seem to notice her zombie-like state. Looking sheepish, he asked, “Would you like to dance? I think I owe you one.”

The horrible memories kept piling up. Now she had to agonize over the disastrous Spring Fling when they had gone to the dance together, but Lee had alternated between fighting and making out with Tina the whole night.

Her brain started functioning again. This time her smile was tight. “That was a long time ago. I barely remember the night.”

Liar, but she was done giving men the satisfaction of hurting her.

Disappointment clouded his eyes, but then it was gone with a blink and she wasn’t sure what she had seen.

“How about we dance anyway?”

She shook her head. “Thanks, but I was never good at dancing.”

“Come on. It’ll be fun.” He gave her empty glass to a passing waiter and tugged her toward the dance floor.

On the way, she fought confusion, disbelief, panic, excitement, and lust. When he slipped an arm around her waist and pulled her close, lust won. Her lady parts crowed in triumph.

“You . . . you don’t have to do this.” Her head spun as she tried to regulate her breathing. His scent filled her pores, and her knees trembled.

The beautiful mouth that she had studied to the point of knowing every curve and line frowned. “But I want to, Jester. Do you hate me that much?”

“What?” She stopped moving to the music. “I don’t hate you. Why do you think that?”

“Because I treated you like crap in high school and took you for granted. You have every right to hate me.”

“We were kids,” she said with a flick of her fingers. “Kids do stupid things.”

He shook his head. “It doesn’t make it right. I’m sorry. I’m sorry for everything.”

She pulled out of his grasp. She didn’t need his sympathy or his apology. She didn’t need to remember how awful high school was, and she absolutely didn’t need lust rushing through her body like whitewater rapids.

“You’re forgiven. Thanks for the dance.”

She made it two steps and then his hand captured hers again. Spinning her around, he closed the distance between them and whispered in her ear, “Please, dance with me.”

She drew in a breath and let it out, picturing her yoga master. When her body relaxed, he pulled her tighter against him. The warmth from his hand sent sparks along her spine and outward to the far corners of her body. It was like being electrocuted but in a good way. She didn’t have to die to go to heaven. Paradise was right here in his arms.


Love a book that has a Happily Ever After? Check out my alter ego, Elizabeth McKenna:

Author website / Facebook

My romance novels are available in e-book and paperback format.


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Elizabeth McKenna works as a full-time technical writer/editor for a large software company. Though her love of books reaches back to her childhood, she had never read romance novels until one Christmas when her sister gave her the latest bestseller by Nora Roberts. She was hooked from page one (actually, she admits it was the first love scene).

She had always wanted to write fiction, so she combined her love of history, romance and a happy ending to write Cera’s Place and Venice in the Moonlight. Her short story, The Gypsy Casts a Spell, is available for free on her website http://elizabethmckenna.com/. She hopes you will enjoy her first contemporary romance novel, First Crush Last Love, as much as others have enjoyed her historical romances.

Elizabeth lives in Wisconsin with her understanding husband, two beautiful daughters, and a sassy Labrador. When she isn’t writing, working, or being a mom, she’s sleeping.

Author Page     Facebook     Instagram     GoodReads


I really hope you are able to check out Elizabeth’s book. If you have, I would love to know what you think! Till then, Happy Reading 🙂

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Clean Sweep (Innkeeper Chronicles, #1)

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When you see a book written by Ilona Andrews, you know a couple things. First, the writing will be fantastic and you will be drawn into the story within the first chapter. And second, the plot will be complex, fascinating, and unique. Clean Sweep is no exception. But one thing the author did that I have not seen before was add pictures throughout the book. There were only a couple but nonetheless it was kind of fun to see. 


Clean SweepAuthor: Ilona Andrews
Published: December 2, 2013
Pages: 235

Stars: 4.5 out of 5

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Where to Buy:
Amazon
Barnes&Noble

Synopsis:
On the outside, Dina Demille is the epitome of normal. She runs a quaint Victorian Bed and Breakfast in a small Texas town, owns a Shih Tzu named Beast, and is a perfect neighbor, whose biggest problem should be what to serve her guests for breakfast. But Dina is…different: Her broom is a deadly weapon; her Inn is magic and thinks for itself. Meant to be a lodging for otherworldly visitors, the only permanent guest is a retired Galactic aristocrat who can’t leave the grounds because she’s responsible for the deaths of millions and someone might shoot her on sight. Under the circumstances, “normal” is a bit of a stretch for Dina.

And now, something with wicked claws and deepwater teeth has begun to hunt at night….Feeling responsible for her neighbors, Dina decides to get involved. Before long, she has to juggle dealing with the annoyingly attractive, ex-military, new neighbor, Sean Evans—an alpha-strain werewolf—and the equally arresting cosmic vampire soldier, Arland, while trying to keep her inn and its guests safe. But the enemy she’s facing is unlike anything she’s ever encountered before. It’s smart, vicious, and lethal, and putting herself between this creature and her neighbors might just cost her everything.

Review:
Dina is the owner of the local bread and breakfast. But when the dog killings begin to increase and the thing killing them begins to get bolder, Dina isn’t sure she is able to sit back and watch her neighbors get threatened. Sean is not what he seems. Although he is new to town, he takes no time in marking his territory. As a werewolf, Dina goes to him for help but getting his help isn’t as easy as she would hope. This puts Dina in a predicament – do nothing and keep her neutral stance within the world of creatures and monsters. Or get involved and lose part of her protection and possibly jeopardize her inn. 

Both Dina and Sean are far more complex than they seem. Dina’s powers match those of her inn. Her little dog Beast is amazing. But Dina is not a usual innkeeper. She is caring, loyal, and unbelievably strong. Yet, there are parts in the book that hint her skills and powers are highly underestimated, even by her. 

Sean is arrogant, dangerous, and highly attractive. Watching the interactions between him and Dina is not only entertaining, but also fun in the building of sexual tension kind of way. 

So much happens in this book, I honestly don’t know what else to say without giving too much away. I love the flow of this book. The author does a great job creating a unique world. The book ends with the possibility of a love triangle. Normally I hate this kind of thing. But I have a feeling it won’t be much of a love triangle for long. 

By the end of the book I had a huge smile on my face and could only think one thing – man, I love this book! I am really looking forward to the next installment in this series. 

Cover Reveal and Author Spotlight: Aleisha Maree, Fractured Promises

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000037_00026]


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Author Interview

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I have read and got lost in books since a very young child. I have always said to myself I’ll write like this one day. I’ll be the retreat for people like me who seek solace in books. Even if it is a bit twisted.  I became a  mum at a young age so that has always been first and foremost in my life but now the voices  are too loud and want out,so i’m grabbing it and running with the crazy

What is the first book that ever made you cry?
Danielle Steel – His Bright Light read it! It is amazing.

Do you have any bizarre writing quirks?
I’m just bizarre in general, but i click my toes together the whole time that i am writing.

What do you think makes a good story?
My husbands says the title and the bigger the boobies the better on the cover (sorry he just wanted to feel involved in my interview lol), but on a serious note i feel passion, and an awesome twisted plot that takes you by surprise makes for an fabulously alluring story.

What are common traps that new authors fall into?
People pleasing, feeling they have to change to fit into an already established writing world.

All new writers JUST BE YOU don’t fall into the trap that society wants.  Me i’m just batshit crazy all day every day.  Take me like a grain of salt and put me in ya coffee.

If you could tell your younger writer self anything, what would it be?
To not have been as scared to let the world know what goes on inside my brain. Keep writing no matter how crazy shit gets don’t ever stop writing. If you write a sentence a day, pretty soon you will have a whole book.

Describe how you felt when you published your first book.
Crazy ecstatic, shaking in me boots, overwhelmingly worried that the world wouldn’t get me but oh so astonishingly proud to show my kiddies DREAMS DO COME TRUE!!

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Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000037_00026]
Author: Aleisha Maree
Published: August 31, 2017

Series: Reapers Reign

Synopsis:
I am Knox The Assassin Ambrose. I loved an angel, yet couldn’t keep her. These hands of mine, they make people bleed. They rain down pain upon sweet pain. Break a man’s bones with just one swift southpaw to the jaw. I’m an Assassin of men’s’ bodies and women’s hearts. I don’t do nice. I’m Raw, Rough and Unwavering in my quest to be the best.

I feed on my enemy’s hate, turning it into power and strength. I know how to fight with my fists but I also know how to destroy you without a single touch. I fucking clawed my way to the top and that is where I’ll stay.

No need to seek the warmth of a woman’s arms as I had them all falling at my feet, then like a south paw to the jaw she was there. Stuck in my minds eyes, haunting my dreams and etching in under my skin. The more this new beauty holds my attention, the more I lose of my angel, the one who first saved me. To top it off, she has her eyes, so every time I look at her, I’m reminded of what I’ve lost. She’s taking over my senses and turning my brutal world upside down.

Gone is the Knox my angel loved, instead I’m fighting harder than ever before.

Maybe just maybe I can find that love my soul craves. Miss Blue-James; can she accept the monster I’ve become? She has her own deep, dark secrets and evil is chasing her tail, seeking to bring her down.

But the evil hell bent on destroying her, hasn’t met me yet. I won’t fail her the way I failed my angel. Tick Tock goes the clock.

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Aleisha Maree – Author

Writer of dark erotic souls in leather and lace.​​​​​

Aleisha Maree is a Wife to one amazing man who is the love of her life, her soul in this crazy world, & a Mamma bear to 6 little hell hounds (I mean kids) that mean more to her than breathing.

Aleisha’s from a small village called Wakefield in the South Island of New Zealand. Reading and getting lost in the world of words and peoples remarkable thoughts has always be the greatest form of escape and the most magical journeys.

Aleisha has spent the last 15 years being a Mamma and wife. Until now, she has put her writing and the amazing voices of  hot alphas and ladies in lace on the back burner. But with life slowing down just a little and the kids just about off too school, the voices became too loud to ignore.

My books will have happily ever afters as well as intense dark loves, devils, and demons with a few angels thrown in here and there.

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New Release: Rule Changer by Sienna Snow (Rules of Engagement #3)

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31934392(2)Author: Sienna Snow
Published: October 3, 2017
Pages: 352

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Synopsis:

Rules are meant to be broken.

Carmen Dane was a self-assured Domme who always maintained control…until she submitted to sinfully sexy Master Thomas Regala.  She gave him her trust and her vulnerability, and he betrayed her.  She’s avoided him for months, but now he knows the truth and refuses to let her hide.  Her all-consuming hunger for Thomas has only grown stronger during their time apart.  But Carmen will never submit to him—or anyone—ever again.

Thomas isn’t about to give up that easily.  Carmen is his Mistress and his submissive.  He’ll do almost anything for a second chance—even if it means giving up some of his power for her pleasure.  Now they’ve embarked on a game of desire and dark, greedy need that breaks both their rules.  But can Thomas ever wholly submit to Carmen when he wants to claim her as his own?

Short Excerpt:
I shut the door of my office and folded my arms across my chest. “Now that we’re alone, what do you want?”

He quirked a brow that made me think of things best left forgotten.

“What do you think I want to discuss besides the fact you scened with another man? The fact that you caressed him, kissed him, and made him come at your feet.”

I leaned against the desk, which housed housing  a wall of security monitors. “Who I scene with and what I do is not your concern.”

“The hell it isn’t.”

I jumped at his outburst but remained quiet.

“Tell me that you were aroused performing with that boy. Did you enjoy caressing him, kissing him, making him come? You may have everyone else watching fooled, but I know you. I know when you’re turned on, and you weren’t even remotely stirred. You enjoyed the high of control, nothing more.”

I clenched my jaw, trying to rein in the turmoil rolling around inside me. “What does it matter how my body reacted? You aren’t part of my life. You made sure of that. Besides…” I paused and closed my eyes for a second.

“Besides?” he probed, and stepped in front of me.

I stared him directly in the eyes. “Besides, I stated where I stood with you during your visit to my estate.”

He remained quiet, holding my gaze.

I stood up, forcing him to step back, cocked a hand on my hip, and tilted my chin slightly, giving him my stern Domme stance. “Let me ask you this one more time, and I expect an answer. Why are you in my club?”

His pupils dilated, and his golden- halo- rimmed hazel eyes clouded to a dark green.

I inhaled deep.

Please don’t look at me like that. My heart can’t take it.

“I came for the mother of my children and…”

I swallowed.

“My Mistress. My submissive.”

Buy the Book!
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About the Author
Sienna Snow’s love of reading started at a very young age with “Beezus and Ramona.” By the time she entered high school, a girlfriend introduced her to Bertrice Small and Jude Deveraux, and an avid romance reader was born.

She writes sexy romance, some with a lot of heat and spice and others with a bit of fantasy. Her characters represent strong women of different cultures and backgrounds, who seek love through unique circumstances.

When she is not writing, traveling, or reading, she spends her time with her husband and two children.

Social Media Links
www.siennasnow.com
www.facebook.com/authorsiennasnow
Follow Sienna Snow on Amazon: http://amzn.to/2wbPhrN
Follow Sienna Snow on BookBub: http://bit.ly/2wnHZBe


 

Giveaway

Enter to win 1 of 15 free ebook downloads of Rule Changer!  http://bit.ly/2fzX2UQ

September Highlights…

Goodbye September

It’s been a while since I’ve written a recap, I’m not even sure how to write one anymore. For those of you who don’t know, I am recovering from a concussion. If you want, you can read more about Surviving the Accident. It’s been 8 months since the accident and there have been a lot of baby steps. This is the first month I have felt like I could be active on my blog again. Thanks again for everyone who is still following me. I know I kind of disappeared there for a while, but hopefully things will continue to progress and I will continue to get better.

Anyway, this is everything that’s happened this month:

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I started a new thing- Author spotlights – and so far I’ve really enjoyed doing this! I started out doing this because I can’t read as much as I used to. After working all day, my concussion head and eyes can’t handle any more screen time. Which makes reading e-books almost impossible. Here are a few of the authors I highlighted this month. I’ve also included cover releases in this section:

Author Spotlight: Mitch Reinhardt, Wizard’s Key (The Dark Wolf Saga, #1)
Author Spotlight- R.S. Dabney: The Soul Mender
Cover Release- Defiant Attraction
Teaser Blitz- Dukes of DesireAuthor Spotlight – Robin Bootle

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This month I haven’t actually read much. But over the 8 months of recovery, all I had was time. It didn’t matter if the book took me 3 weeks to read, I had the time. Here’s a highlight of the different book reviews I’ve done:

My Favorite Mistake (My Favorite Mistake #1)
Reaper’s Property (Reapers MC, #1)

I did do a combined post that was called Legs (One Wild Wish, #1) Book Release, Giveaway, and Review. This one was probably my favorite.

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I’m glad September is over and I’m ready for October. If you have time, let me know what your favorite post was this month. Until then, Happy Reading 🙂 

Legs (One Wild Wish, #1) Book Release, Giveaway, and Review

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Legs by Kelly Siskind is a light hearted book with a nice mix of sexual tension and swoon-worthy moments. The sex scenes are HOT and the book is easy to connect with. Kelly Siskind is such a gifted writer, I love her books and her writing style. Whether this is your first book or your 5th, I promise you it wont be the last book you pick up from this author.


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Title: Legs
Series: One Wild Wish #1
Author: Kelly Siskind

Genre: RomCom
Stars: 3.5 out of 5

Release: September 27, 2017

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Order:
Amazon: http://hyperurl.co/LEGSamazon
iBooks: http://hyperurl.co/LEGSiBooks
Kobo: http://hyperurl.co/LEGSkobo
Universal Book Link: https://www.books2read.com/u/mdNWN5

Running into your one-night stand is a special kind of awkward. Competing against him in a wine tasting contest is delicious torment…

On Rachel’s twenty-seventh birthday, she wishes to finally find a rewarding job. What she doesn’t wish is to drink a boatload of wine, sleep with a tattooed bad boy, and drunk email her boss in one glorious, career-ending move. But the fiasco pushes her to pursue a career inspired by her late father’s love of wine: sommelier.

Unfortunately, she’s competing against her infuriating one-night stand, a man as intoxicating as a Pinot Noir.

Two years ago, Jimmy was set to inherit his family winery. Then it got ripped from his grasp. To close that dark chapter of his life, he plans to win a local sommelier contest and use the press to expose his family’s tainted wines.

Jimmy loves studying the streaks of alcohol that cling to a wineglass, known as the wine’s “legs,” but other shapely legs are stealing his focus. Tantalizing legs. Legs that had wrapped around his waist for one wild night. Jimmy, sadly, has a weakness for legs.

He also hates to lose.

LEGS is a full-length, standalone Smart, Sexy Romantic Comedy with a swoony Happily Ever After. No cheating or cliff-hangers here! Perfect for fans of Christina Lauren, Avery Flynn, Alice Clayton, Emma Chase, and Lauren Blakely.


Excerpt:

The last person I wanted to see walked into the restaurant, and I tensed.

Her frantic gaze was forced to me, and the only three vacant seats. She searched the room in vain, the rounding of her spine a clue she wasn’t thrilled about her options. She looked out the way she came, squeezed her eyes, then squared her shoulders and marched toward me.

Part of me—the lower half—wanted to pin her to the wall with my thighs while I hitched that proper little skirt higher. The other part hoped she’d wandered into the wrong place. Not because our night together had been bad, or the fact that she’d disappeared without a trace. No. The thing that had the tendons in my neck bunching was remembering how good it all was. Too good and too much fun, and I’d imagined rounds two and three and four ad nauseam. But rounds always ended in a knockout punch.

This girl was nothing but trouble.

She paused at the table, drew in a long breath, mumbled something as she exhaled, then glared at the seat beside me and the ones across. She chose beside, probably to face the room.

The only reason we’d hooked up two weeks ago was because there were no names and no strings. She’d admitted how hard it would be for her to relax, how awkward she’d feel afterward. The relaxing part I took care of with one brush of my lips. The awkward was still alive and kicking.

What went down between us couldn’t happen again. Distractions over the next two months weren’t an option, and repeat affairs led to feelings, and feelings led to promises, and promises were nothing but lies dressed up to seduce. Not an outcome I was keen to revisit. Still, I couldn’t ignore her anxiety, as long as she wasn’t here because of me.

I leaned toward her. “You’re the last person I expected to see.”

She squished her lithe body farther from mine. “Kind of coincidental, don’t you think? Did you follow me?”

“I got here before you. If anyone is stalking, it’s you tailing me.”

Indignation colored her cheeks. “I didn’t follow you. I saw a flyer and thought the contest looked interesting, but you obviously read it, too. If I’d known you’d be here”—aggravation laced her hushed tone—“I’d never have shown up.”

Her harsh words had me fisting my hands, or maybe it was how tempting the line of her neck looked, that column of tanned skin shifting as she swallowed. But she was right: having a diversion wouldn’t help my plan. “Then we’re on the same page.”

“Excuse me?”

“Since we’re both here for the contest, we can pretend that night never happened.”

Her face fell, but a beat later, she said, “Good,” nothing but ice in her voice.

I followed with “Great.”

She spat, “Fine.”

So much for stamping out the awkward.


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Review:
Oh Rachel! The book opens to a extremely lonely, sex deprived women. Her desperation just screams from the pages. She has a long history of making bad decisions but Rachel is ready for a change. On her birthday, Rachel makes a big wish and the power outage that follows leaves her with the hope that change is on its way. 

One thing I didn’t like about Rachel’s character was her reasoning behind not expressing her feelings and starting a relationship with Jimmy. According to her logic, she’s fearful to take that next step because she doesn’t think Jimmy wants a relationship. But it’s completely obvious that he does. I think the root behind her hesitation is because she was hurt terribly by an ex bad-boy boyfriend she dated a long time ago and she’s not able to move past that. Well, that and she doesn’t think her dead father would approve. Okay, some of this reasoning I get. You get burned once, you are a little hesitant to jump back in. But come on! I desperately wanted her to take a chance. 

Jimmy is a complex character who has a rough exterior but a huge heart. This bad boy screams sex and has the confidence to back it up. But he’s a mystery and his past has left him broken and unsure of who to trust.

I really enjoyed how this book was laid out. Kelly Siskind doesn’t give you everything up front, instead creating a mystery that’s both exciting and fun. With each chapter, another layer unfolds and you learn a little more about who Rachel and Jimmy are.   

When we finally find out what happened between Jimmy and his father, ouch! I don’t blame him for his feelings. I’ll be honest, as I was reading what his father had done, I noticed my thoughts mirrored Jimmy’s. 

But the way Jimmy lashes out at Rachel is ridiculous. Blaming her for things she had nothing to do with.. his thought process didn’t even make sense.  I think Rachel let him get off way too easily and the ending of the book felt too tidy. Like everything ended in this nice bow but instead of feeling happy, I felt cheated. Maybe if Jimmy had some grand gesture it would have made the ending better. Now don’t get me wrong, it was romantic and sweet what he did at the end of the book. But Rachel had already forgiven him by then. I think I would have liked it more if he had done that prior to her forgiving him. But that’s just me. I think most of you will enjoy the ending of this book.  

This book was not one favorites from Kelly Siskind. But there is no denying her talent in creating sexual tension. Some of the terminology she uses, I just didn’t get. What does it mean when someone “oozed dude”? But in the end I enjoyed parts of this book but didn’t love all of it. I enjoyed reading the book and it is great for those looking for a steamy romance novel. But I’m doubtful I’ll read the book more than once. 


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A Fine MessAuthor Bio:
Kelly is the author of CHASING CRAZY, MY PERFECT MISTAKE, A FINE MESS, and HOOKED ON TROUBLE, the latter three being part of her Over the Top series. A small-town girl at heart, she moved from the city to open a cheese shop with her husband in northern Ontario. When she’s not neck deep in cheese or out hiking, you can find her, notepad in hand, scribbling down one of the many plot bunnies bouncing around in her head. She’s also an incurable romantic, devouring romance novels into the wee hours of the morning.

 

Social media links:

Facebook     Twitter     Goodreads     Amazon     Instagram: @kellysiskind

 

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Author Spotlight – Robin Bootle

Extropia


“For those missing Katniss, the Divergents and the Maze Runners, this must be your next book” – Emmy Award Winning Film Director, Johnny Burke. I had the opportunity to chat with Robin Bootle on his upcoming book, Extropia: Mind Game, and ask him a few questions about his book and being a writer. 

When did you know first discover you wanted to be a writer and why writing?
I was sitting at work when I was 21, emailing my brother back and forth to moan about the boredom of my job. He wrote back saying, “Why not try writing something, it’s fun.” So I wrote a chapter about not much in particular, with no plot and no plan – but really enjoyed the process. Ever since I’d wanted to write a book, but I was waiting for the right idea to come to me.

Tell us about your book and why you wrote it?
The idea came to me while I was watching Tron: Legacy. I loved the idea but thought the execution was poor. So I took core premise (boy goes into computer game to save father) and ended up writing something completely different.

What message or lasting thought do you hope your readers will take away from your book?
Well I could try and say something deep here, but the real goal is that the readers will walk away thinking “that was fun!”. That’s not to say there aren’t some deeper ideas inside  The protagonist encounters some of the potential perils of AI, man-playing-god and mankind not taking due care of the technology we create.

What author and/or what book has had the greatest impact on your life?
Philip Wooderson – he mentored me throughout the process and is an absolute genius.

 Can you offer any advice for beginning writers or those trying to get published?Lots! Ping me at robinbootleauthor@gmail.com if you want any advice – it’s free. But here’s 3 things:
1) Get feedback, lots of it, and not from you mother or anyone who is going to be anything but brutally hard on you.
2) Related to that, you’re going to get knocked down a thousand times. Just believe that you CAN do this if you keep at it.
3) Use the down time, when you can’t find the energy to write, to network with the publishing world and start building your audience NOW.

Beside your book, are there any other books you would recommend reading this summer?
A kind of obvious one, but I’m reading the Game of Thrones books. Just incredible.


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Published: March 2, 2017
Pages: 320

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Where to Buy:
Amazon

Synopsis:
An act of sabotage leaves Edward’s father trapped inside a virtual reality game, Extropia. In a bid to save him, Edward follows, entering a world he knows he might never leave. A world of artificially intelligent beings, subjected to a life of misery and fear in the name of entertainment.
Now one of them has learned of the real world, and is determined to have his revenge…

Short Excerpt:
Edward’s eyes cast about his surroundings. His arms squeezed into his sides as though the white walls around him were made of poison. He felt moisture around his ankles. By the time he looked down, the blue SenseGel had already reached his knees. He glanced back up, hoping that Oriel might be rushing to let him out. Instead, the man continued to motion with exaggerated movements for him to breathe.

The blue liquid swamped his fist, then his upper arm. He’d already stopped breathing, his instincts readying himself to go under. He tried to push to the top of his port, to reach the last bubble of air. The liquid splashed his eyes, and then that last bubble was washed away in a swirl of blue.

He stared aghast at Oriel, eyes wide and cheeks full of air. Oriel walked over to the port, but only to continue his signal for Edward to breathe.

Edward glanced down, left, right, desperate to find another way out, an abort button or anything. His lungs felt like they might explode. His head was spinning. Oriel started to blur on the other side of the glass.

Finally, he gave up and opened his lungs.

The SenseGel rushed past his cheeks and gums. He thought he felt it creep up his sinuses, but he couldn’t be certain; everything was already numb. The warm liquid against his skin was gone. He could no longer feel his arms or legs, or his teeth that a moment ago had been clamped together. Everything was perfect pitch black, because his eyes too were gone. It was as if he’d been reduced to nothing more than the voice in his head.

VirtuaWorld! The voice screamed so frantically that he worried the port wouldn’t be able to process it. VirtuaWorld!

With a flash of light, he could feel himself standing, shaking, breathing. The sound of a soft wind ruffled about his ears, then the three-note tweet of a bird. He lifted his eyelids gradually, letting them adjust from the dark to the light of day.

Elizabeth’s hand touched his forearm. ‘So this is it then. VirtuaWorld.’


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Robin was born in Athens, not long before the 1981 earthquake. As a boy he lived in Chennai (India) and Hampshire (UK) before moving to Mauritius at the age of nine, the paradise island to which he still returns every year. He has since lived in New Zealand & France, and is now settled in Crouch End, London, with his wife, Kate. Like many of us, he is intrigued to see how the world changes over the coming years with the evolution of artificial intelligence and virtual reality, and as a fan of fantasy RPGs such as Skyrim and The Witcher 3, he has combined his interests to inform his story. Extropia: Mind Game explores what might happen if artificial intelligence becomes so advanced that the emotions of the characters in these games become indecipherable from those of a human.

 

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Hope you are able to check out his book or some of the reviews on GoodReads. Happy Reading 🙂