Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Review & Giveaway Featruing The Purest of the Breed by Tracy Tappan

Author Tracy Tappan is with us today for a review of her second book titled, The Purest of the Breed, the second in her The Community series. Below you'll find all the details on how to get your copy, how to enter the author's awesome giveaway and my thoughts on the book. And best of excerpt! Happy reading!

The Purest of the Breed
(The Community Series #2) by Tracy Tappan

Genre: Paranormal Romance
Amazon ASIN: B00LD9IL1W
SBN13: 9780991261338
Book Length: 324 pages
Publisher: B. Reed Publishing (Indie)

THE PUREST OF THE BREED, Book Two in The Community Series

Plagued by enemies from above and below ground, a group of Vârcolac warriors fight a desperate battle to keep their secret town safe from invasion

A different place to find her dreams…

The night Marissa Bonaventure is saved from vicious kidnappers by special operative, Dev Nichita, her life is changed in ways she never could have imagined. Brought to the safety of an underground “research institute,” she’s offered a hefty sum of money to stay on and work for a year, money that will allow her to fulfill her lifelong dream of owning a restaurant. But the surreal events that unfold in the strange community of Ţărână soon make her wonder if all is what it seems. When the shocking truth about Dev is exposed, Marissa faces an impossible decision. She loves Dev deeply, but committing to a Vârcolac is a forever proposition, and the only way she can be with Dev will require her to throw away her one chance to redeem a miserable past.

The man he wants to be…

The night Dev Nichita rescues Marissa from the claws of the Om Rău demon race, he knows she’s meant to be his mate. Lying to her about his true nature feels wrong, but he needs time to make her fall in love with him before he reveals that he’s a different breed of human being. When that secret finally comes out, their relationship is shattered in ways Dev hadn’t predicted. A 100-year-old betrayal rises up to endanger their future together—devastating every member of his family—and Dev’s own angry withdrawal becomes a nearly insurmountable obstacle. Then the Topside Om Rău enemy threatens a catastrophic breach of the hidden community, and Dev must call upon all his power as he races against the clock to save the most important people in his life.

** THE PUREST OF THE BREED is a dark paranormal romance. It contains profanity and strong adult situations.

Pick Up Your Copy (Free for Kindle Unlimited!)

My Thoughts:

What an adrenaline rush!

At first I was a little confused by all the foreign words used in the reference to people in the book, but the author did a good job of using it in a way that I was able to quickly catch on. Once I did, which was about chapter three, the reading pace picked up and I couldn't put the book down. The author wrote a very gritty, well paced dark paranormal romance. The tension and angst between the hero, Dev, and the heroine, Marissa, added to the unique adventure forcing me to keep flipping the pages.

I found this book to be very uniquely written and, surprisingly enough, that's hard to do with so many books available in the genre. Ms. Tappan kept to each characters personalities enriching the power of the story further.

The Purest of the Breed can be read out of order, but I feel that if I would have read the first, The Bloodline War, I might have understood the foreign references in this book quicker. One thing is for certain though, there's no way I'm not going back to read the first with how exquisitely exhausted the second left me! And the romance you ask? Sizzling hot and heart melting all in one! Yeah, this one has it all!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

June, 2:36 a.m.

     Marissa Bonaventure sat bolt upright in bed. Wood cracked and splintered, a door banged, furniture scraped. She gulped for air, her heart galloping in her chest. A hovering silence followed. She waited, the thundering of her heart trying to outrun her fast breathing, but there was only silence. Okay, Jesus… She squeezed her lids tight then peeled them open again. Only a nightmare. She blinked groggily at the dim numbers on her digital clock—2:36 a.m.—her mind slowly registering that she’d only been asleep for about an hour. She’d worked late cooking at Bleu Boheme restaurant tonight, some lactose intolerant asshole endlessly chewing her ear off about all of the cheese on the menu. Well, yes, sir, this is a French restaurant, after all, and generally—  
A gruff voice growled a command, and then her roommate, Lila, started screaming. Holy frick! Not a nightmare. 
There were men in her apartment!
Coming fully awake on a searing blast of adrenaline, Marissa vaulted for the cordless phone on her nightstand. Her wildly groping fingers knocked the receiver out of its holder and sent it skidding across the thin synthetic carpet. “Oh, God, crap.” She threw herself after the phone, and crashed off her mattress, the sheets tangled around her legs. Air drove from her lungs. “Crap,” she gasped again. “Crap.” Darts of pain shot through her elbow.
The report of heavy boots in the hallway vibrated through the floor beneath her, the footsteps thundering toward her bedroom. Panic shot through her stomach and clawed up her spine. She stretched one arm toward the phone by her hamper, scooting her body across the floor like an epileptic caterpillar trapped in its cocoon.
The door slammed open.
She jerked to a sitting position, her heart lurching to a dead halt. A broad-shouldered shadow loomed into her doorway, the light from her digital clock offering only a vague impression of dark, baggy clothing, the cut of a hard jaw…and the most sinister eyes she’d ever seen in her life. A scream launched up her throat but stuck there, unable to make it past the strangulation of terror gripping her larynx.
“In here!” the intruder shouted down the hall, his head turning to reveal what looked like stripes of gangrene on his jaw. No…a black flame tattoo.
Another man entered, and her mouth sagged. And she thought Gangrene Face’s shoulders had been broad. The man who’d just shoved into her room was twice as big, his shoulders size Incredible Hulk, and a hundred times scarier. She saw him clearly as the lights from a Navy helicopter on its weary way home to NAS North Island raked through her organza curtains like a prison searchlight. A body clothed in a black leather jacket and dark cargo pants was revealed, along with the man’s shaved head, sporting tattoos—same black flames as Gangrene—climbing from above his ears to the top of his bald head. He looked like an Aryan Nation sociopath, brutal and violent and…what could he possibly want with her?
He stalked toward her, and her stomach iced. She scuttled sideways against the wall like a crab, her teeth set in a grimace, her eyes darting toward her bedroom window. Only a few feet away, but…five floors down equaled lots of bone breakage on the streets of San Diego. 
“She must be the bit o’ skirt we’re lookin’ for,” Gangrene told Hulk in a British accent which really didn’t fit this scenario.
Hulk drew up right in front of her, six-feet-umpteen-inches of darkness, chilling, ruthless power emanating from him.
She kicked violently at the jail of her sheets and found a scream, finally, belting it out as loud as she could.
“Shut your gob,” Hulk snarled.
Like a genie being commanded into its bottle, her voice obeyed immediately and rammed back down her throat. Yes, yes, upsetting a man like this is an extremely bad idea.
He reached for her.
She pressed backward so hard, she wondered the drywall didn’t crack against her spine.
Grabbing her shoulders, Hulk jerked her out of the wrap of her sheets and onto her feet, the violence of the gesture jolting a cry past her lips. With a bruising grip still on her upper arm, Hulk hauled her at a stumbling pace from her bedroom into the hallway.
“Please,” she gasped, hot tears spilling down her face. “What do you want from me?”
They passed her roommate’s bedroom, and Marissa glimpsed Lila peeking out from behind the door, a bed sheet wrapped toga-style around her body. Not such a good night to get caught sleeping in the nude.
Lila’s lips trembled. “Oh, Marissa,” she breathed.
Her roommate’s you’re doomed tone turned Marissa’s legs to pudding, just, squish, down she went onto her knees.
Hulk made a guttural sound of impatience and yanked her to her feet again.
“P-please,” she stammered. “D-Don’t hurt me, please.” She pulled against his hold, but it was like trying to stop a Kodiak bear. Her feet skidded along the length of the hallway, carpet burning the soles of her feet.
“Cow,” Hulk snarled. So much for not upsetting the man. He tossed her over his shoulder, the chains on his biker jacket biting into her skin through the thin fabric of her pajamas. The rounded position of her back pulled painfully at her spine, and she choked on her next breath. The fragility of her body, something she usually so successfully ignored, roared dead-center into her consciousness. Panic greyed the sides of her vision at the feel of hard, solid muscles beneath her. This man was massive. He could do anything to her, anything, and she’d be utterly helpless to stop him.
“Lila!” Marissa screamed, more tears dripping off her nose. “Call 911!”
“Oh, shit!” Lila lurched out from behind her door.
With a careless backhand, Hulk swatted Lila across the mouth, the blow, shockingly, lifting Lila off her feet and rocketing her all the way back onto her bed. She thumped onto her mattress with a frightened cry, her makeshift toga breezing above her waist and her legs flinging wide, giving everyone a full-on shot of her muff.
Gangrene leered at the sight. “Hang about, Mürk. I want to give this one a stuffin’.”
“There’s no time,” Hulk—apparently, Mürk—retorted. “We’ve got to leg it, Tëer, everyone else is at the warehouse by now.”
Tëer grumbled something foul, but tramped out of the apartment along with Mürk, thankfully for Lila’s virtue, and got into the elevator.
Fingers tangled into the back of Mürk’s jacket, Marissa prayed for some late night partier to come home conveniently now and find her upended on this behemoth’s shoulder. She filled her lungs with a potential scream just in case, but no such luck. The parking lot was equally Judgment Day deserted and dark. The scratching together of palm fronds in a mild June breeze was the only sound besides the clomp of both men’s heavy boots on the asphalt.
They stopped at a rusted-out blue Honda Civic, one headlight-eyeball dangling from the front by wiry veins, and then screech, metallic hinges wailed for oil as Mürk hauled open the trunk. He flung Marissa off his shoulder with all the care he’d show a dead body, and—the trunk!
She fastened cat claws into his T-shirt and clambered back up his body. “No!”
He peeled her off and thrust her toward the dark opening again. 
She crammed her foot against the edge of the trunk, the metal sharp and cold against her bare flesh. “Don’t put me in there!”
With a growl, he folded her into a ball and slammed her inside. 
Ribs met spare tire in a dizzying blast of pain. Her spine throbbed. She wheezed a breath and shoved upright, ignoring the pinpricks of light sparkling across the field of her vision. 
With a palm on her shoulder, Mürk rammed her back down. “Bloody hell,” he hissed. 
“Not in the trunk!” She opened her mouth to yell for— He stuffed a ball gag into it, then flipped her onto her stomach. The stench of brake fluid assaulted her nostrils; a lug wrench ground into her cheek. Liquid fear clutched her lower belly as Mürk secured the strap of the ball gag tight against the back of her head, then bound her wrists.
She bucked and flailed, whipping herself back over. She gnashed on her ball gag and tried to scream around it. Not in a trunk!
“Stop throwin’ a benny, you split arse.” Mürk’s gaze was tundra cold, black as the end of the world.
She sobbed in panic, her nostrils pinching and releasing, pinching and releasing. She couldn’t breathe! She kicked her legs up.
“You keep givin’ me trouble, ducky, and I’ll sock you in the turnip so many times you’ll never find your way back from ugly, savvy?” His voice was deep and dark like first generation Hell, but also incongruously laced with that touch of British culture. He braced a hand on the open lid of the trunk, his Guns & Roses T-shirt hiking up to reveal a peek of gnarled scar on his belly. Somebody had tried to gut this maniac jerk? Shocking!      
The trunk lid started to come down…
She shook her head wildly at him, trying to scream again, her chest and throat tightening.
He slammed the lid shut, interring her in black. She thrashed her head from side to side, her heartbeat erratic, her eyes bugging and rolling as she tried to see anything…anything...


Tracy is the award-winning author of gritty romance, her books spanning genres across paranormal (The Community series), military suspense (The Wings of Gold series), and Historical (The Baron’s War trilogy). During nearly twenty-five years spent as a military wife, she lived all over the United States and in Europe, enjoying seven years overseas in the diplomatic community, first in Rome then in Madrid, until she settled back in San Diego. Tracy holds a master’s degree in Marriage, Family, and Child Counseling, and has used this background to create a fan-based website called The Character Couch, where romance’s favorite couples are brought into a fun session with therapist, Regan Malloy. Her debut paranormal novel, THE BLOODLINE WAR, is a Bronze Medal winner for romance of the prestigious Independent Publishers Book Award (IPPY). 

Connect With Tracy:
Website | Facebook | Twitter: @TracyTappan
Amazon: Author page
The Character Couch website:

Monday, September 29, 2014

Author Interview & Giveaway with Em Taylor

Happy Monday! We're kicking the week off with the romance author Em Taylor. She has stopped by BIR for a chat and is sharing an excerpt from her latest release, A Desperate Wager. Grab a cuppa something good and a comfy chair and join us. While you're here, don't forget to enter her giveaway at the bottom of the post!

Let's get started!

Talina: Welcome, Ms. Taylor! It’s great to have you on Bookin’ It Reviews today! Thank you so much for taking the time to be here. Before we get started talking about your fabulous new historical romance release, A Desperate Wager, let’s talk a bit about you. For those of us just meeting you, can you share a little bit about how you became a romance writer?

Em: Hi Talina. I loved reading and writing at school but school put me off writing completely. So it was not until I got into watching Star Trek Voyager and started reading fan fiction that the thought occurred to me. I started writing fan fiction for friends and published it online. But I was fed up of just using other people’s characters after a year. So during Nanowrimo 2011 I wrote an erotic sci fi romance. I then wrote a short story for publication in an anthology. It was accepted and published under a different name. I wrote a few novellas under that name and a couple more short stories. Reading Regency romances by authors like Mary Balogh made me want to try my hand at it, so I did.

Talina: Every reader likes to know this one when they pick up a new book, what inspired you in writing A Desperate Wager— Nathaniel and Lady Sarah Steele?

Em: I had a plan to write a contemporary book about an injured soldier returning from Iraq and I decided to try to place the general idea in the Regency period. It just wasn’t working with an injured hero. So I cheated and swapped them. That’s where I’m lucky in my books that I can swap the hard stuff. I guess people don’t have that luxury in real life. That said, I’m always fascinated by the human spirit and its ability to work through problems such as disabilities.  

Talina: Now that we’ve had a little behind the scenes peek, what’s a typical writing day like for you? Anything that helps create the mojo behind the books? ;)

Em: I don’t really have a typical day, to be honest.  I’m one of these disorganized creative types who no one really understands how I get anything done, ever – including me.

Talina: All-time favorite romantic movie? How about one that might have sparked a story idea? 

Em: Probably Victor/Victoria, which some people may argue is not a romance movie but I love the growing relationship between King and Victoria. She’s strong and doing anything she needs to do to get by and he has to give up some of his ideas about being macho. It’s all about give and take.

I can’t think of any movies that have inspired a story but the TV programme the Palace inspired one that has not been written yet.

Talina: Which leads me to my next question, what’s your definition of a hero and heroine in fiction?

Em: I think anyone can be a hero or heroine if you give them enough likeable qualities. When I started writing romance I was told my hero had to be flawless but I could give any flaws to my heroines. That’s not true. We ladies don’t like weak, pathetic women. So a heroine has to at least have inner strength and the hero must be honourable, even if it doesn’t show at first.

Talina: Is there a certain flaw you like to give your characters that make them more appealing to readers?

Em: I like to give them some kind of flaw as it makes them seem more believable but I don’t have a favourite one.

Talina: Do you have a favorite hero “type” you like to write about? If so, why?

Em: I prefer beta heroes personally and regularly have to edit my books to beef up the hero a bit and make him more alpha.

Talina: In A Desperate Wager we meet Nathaniel Spencer and Lady Sarah Steele. Can you give us a little insight into each character?

Em: Nathaniel is a Duke and so was raised with certain expectations. He is confident, self-assured and extremely lonely, I think. Sarah on the other hand is lonely because of circumstances but her character is bright and bubbly and when she is given the opportunity, I expect her to be the life and soul of a party.

Talina: Is Nathaniel and Lady Sarah’s story a stand alone?

Em: Yes, though you will see Lord James Eversley from Restoring Lady Anna and Saved by a Rake in A Desperate Wager. The eagle-eyed reader may recognize Sarah as the Duchess who speaks to Anna at the ball at the end of Restoring Lady Anna.

Talina: What’s next for Em Taylor? Any special news or upcoming events you’d like to fill readers in on?

Em: I’m writing a Christmas Regency Novella which I hope to release around US Thanksgiving. Then I want to write Lachlan which is a story I’ve been desperate to write for a long time. It’s a bit different to my regency fare as it is about a space-faring vampire.
Fast Fun Fact Time!

Talina: Favorite treat?

Em: Rocky road

Talina: Favorite Song?

Em: The Cutter by Runrig

Talina: Favorite book?
Em: Oh I have to plead the 5th on that question, lol

Talina: Thank you so much for taking a moment to have a sit down with us today, Em. Congratulations on your latest release, A Desperate Wager!

A Desperate Wager
By Em Taylor

GENRE – Historical Regency Romance
PUBLICATION DATE – 25 August 2014
LENGTH – 71,000 words
COVER ARTIST – Samantha Holt


Nathaniel Spencer, the Fourteenth Duke of Kirkbourne wakes up with an almighty hangover and a wager note in his pocket stating he has agreed to marry the Earl of Brackingham’s daughter. And he can’t even remember ever meeting the chit. Clearly his drinking has got out of hand.

Lady Sarah Steele is horrified when her father announces that the Duke of Kirkbourne has agreed to marry her and even more horrified that her father wagered her hand in a game of cards. Not only that, but the earl has not told the duke of the riding accident that left Sarah paralysed when she was sixteen.  But he’s dying and she knows he wants to see her settled before the inevitable happens.

Despite Nate’s drinking and Sarah’s possible complicity in the earl’s plan, they agree to marry. But when accidents start to happen, the newly-weds must deal not only with the fact they are practically strangers, but they must find out who is trying to kill one or both of them. Nate’s drink problem and Sarah’s disability are only a couple of the hurdles they must face to find lasting love.
Pick Up Your Copy
Nathaniel Spencer, fourteenth Duke of Kirkbourne groaned and rolled over in bed. A tattoo beat a steady rhythm inside his skull, his stomach was bilious and the world spun at an alarming rate.

Last night he had been in his cups—again. He knew he should take a more moderate attitude to alcohol but recently, staying sober had seemed somewhat pointless. Why stay sober if you were just going to end up dead at the side of the road—another silly young buck who had killed himself in a curricle race?

Damn Crosby! Why had he made the damned challenge? Nathaniel, or Nate as he preferred to be called, would never forget Crosby’s lifeless eyes staring up at him, or the crack of the pistol as a bystander put his horses out of their misery. And he would never forgive himself for being the man whom Crosby was racing.

Nate closed his eyes and willed his stomach to stop churning as he tried to recall the events of the night before. He had been at White’s for dinner and had moved to the card room. The brandy had been flowing, and Ormsby had suggested moving on to a less reputable gaming hell. He remembered the Earl of Brackingham tagging along for some reason that defied Nate.

He had no issue with Brackingham, but the earl was at least twenty years the senior of everyone else in their party. He had been coughing somewhat alarmingly, Nate recalled. He hoped the old man was not spreading disease around. The last thing Nate needed was to be laid up in bed—his mother fussing around him and pouring vile-tasting concoctions down his throat. There was another thing that took many young, seemingly healthy lives—fever. Curricles and fever—good reasons to get absolutely foxed if ever he needed any.

Brackingham! The name seemed to be prodding his tired and very painful brain—waiting for him to remember something significant from last night. He had a vague memory of playing vingt et un with him. There had been a ludicrous bet. Brackingham wagered his daughter’s hand and if Nate lost, he would have to marry the girl.

Nate had been on a winning streak. Bravado and alcohol made him foolish. He had a three and a queen. He sat up as the king of diamonds flashed before his eyes.
God, damn it.

The king of diamonds took him to twenty-three. His head swum and he tamped down the urge to cast up his accounts. Twenty-three. But surely a wager like that was a joke. It had to be. Brackingham did not expect him to marry his chit of a daughter, did he? Had he even set eyes on the girl before?

Again, some piece of information about the girl needled his brain. He had no recollection of dancing with her at balls. But then he hardly ever danced at balls. He had no plans to seek a leg-shackle on the marriage mart, so he steered clear and spent most of the evening in the card room.

God, he hoped she was at least old enough to have had her come out and this was not some medieval plan to marry a thirteen-year-old off to him. Eighteen was quite young enough—too young in his rather jaded opinion.

But no. He had no recollection of ever having set eyes on Lady… Lady what? He had no idea.

He fished in the pocket of his waistcoat, which he still wore, having obviously been so foxed when he had returned that he had either shooed his valet away or he had arrived so late the valet had been asleep. There was a note. A wager. He hoped he owed the man a vast fortune instead.

Marry Lady Sarah Steele. Dowry - £10,000. Meet Brackingham on 5th day of March to make arrangements.

Today must be the fifth of March. Yesterday had definitely been the fourth. Christ, he had to see if this was a big joke or, if not, was there any way he could inveigle his way out of it. He had no plans to marry. None at all. And that was that.


About the Author:
Em was born and brought up in the Central Belt of Scotland and still lives there. She
was told as a child she had an over active imagination--as if that is a bad thing. She's traded her dreams of owning her own island, just like George in the Famous Five to hoping to meet her own Mr Darcy one day. But her imagination remains the same.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Monday, September 22, 2014

Guest Author & Giveaway Featuring Maximum Risk by Jennifer Lowery

Hi Bookin' It Reviews and all you fabulous readers out there *waves* Thank you so much for having me today! My romantic suspense, Maximum Risk (Book #1, Wolff Securities), released this month so I’m very excited to be here! Thank you so much for sharing it with me!! 

In honor of my release I am giving away an e-book copy of any one of my books (go to my WEBSITE to choose) to one lucky commenter so please leave me a comment with your EMAIL so I can contact you if you win!!

It should have been a simple rescue mission…
Retired Pararescueman, Quinn Wolff, wrote the book on how to stay alive during a mission when he founded Wolff Securities, an elite private sector security firm. When he fast-ropes down to save missing humanitarian aid worker, Avery Marks, in the remote mountains of Azbakastan he isn’t prepared for the brave, stubborn woman who challenges the rules he wrote in order to protect her.
But when it comes to matters of the heart nothing is simple…
Avery Marks learned a long time ago to take care of herself, but when her convoy is attacked, her friends and coworkers murdered, she has to rely on the aid of intensely capable and handsome, Quinn Wolff to get her safely out of the country. His skills keep her alive, but his kisses put her in danger. In danger of losing her heart. That’s a risk she can’t take ever again.
Content Warning: Sexual content

Copyright © 2014 Jennifer Lowery 
Quinn sat back on his haunches and scrubbed a hand down his face. Avery slept soundly. He wanted to tend her other injuries, but sleep would heal her body faster than anything he could do.
Escape and evasion would be slow going with her injured feet. Without boots to protect them, it would be agony for Avery. Even with boots, walking would be difficult. Running, out of the question. He would carry her.
Quietly, he packed up the supplies and sat down a few feet away from where Avery slept. He snapped off the penlight, his NVGs next to him in case he needed them before his eyes adjusted to the dark.
Avery whimpered. Seconds later, a stifled scream.
Quinn repositioned to where she lay and put a hand on her shoulder.
She flinched and tried to scoot away. “Please. No more,” she moaned.
A nightmare. Instead of waking her, he stretched out on the ground and pulled her into his arms. The last thing he wanted was to wake her and make her remember. Bad enough she couldn’t escape her torment even in sleep.
He wrapped one arm around her waist, using his other arm as a pillow. She lashed out, her nostrils flaring as she drew in deep, gasping breaths.
“Avery, it’s Quinn.”
“PJ,” she murmured and instantly settled down. Her body relaxed and little by little her breathing slowed.
Quinn rested his chin on top of her head. More protective urges surged through him and he shifted a little closer.
“What did they do to you, Avery Marks?” he murmured.

Buy the Book:

Meet Jennifer:
NY Times & USA Today bestselling author, Jennifer Lowery grew up reading romance novels in the back of her math book and on the bus to school, and never wanted to be anything but a writer.  Her summers were spent sitting at the kitchen table with her sisters spinning tales of romance and intrigue and always with a tall glass of ice tea at their side. 
Today, Jennifer is living that dream and she couldn’t be happier to share her passion with her readers.  She loves everything there is about romance.  Her stories feature alpha heroes who meet their match with strong, independent heroines.  She believes that happily ever after is only the beginning of her stories. And the road to that happy ending is paved with action, adventure, and romance. As her characters find out when they face danger, overcome fears, and are forced to look deep within themselves to discover love.  
Jennifer lives in Michigan with her husband and two children.  When she isn’t writing she enjoys reading and spending time with her family. 
Connect With Jennifer:
For everyone who signs up for my NEWSLETTER you will receive an e-book copy of my short story, Taking Chances ($.99 value) for FREE!

Thank you for having me today, Bookin' It Reviews!! I just want to send out a big THANK YOU to all my readers out there! Without you I wouldn’t be here. My wish is to one day meet each and every one of you so I can personally thank you for your generosity and support! 
All my best, 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 Thank you so much for stopping in today, Jennifer!