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I FLIPPING LOVE YOU – A Helena Hunting Review, Chapter Reveal & Giveaway

Bancroft has his humor and that BODY, Lex has…all his sexy Lexy-ness, but Pierce….a suave combination of business man meets guy next door HOT! Rian and her twin are trying to finally make a name (their OWN name) for themselves keeping the mess her family left them in the dark. Flipping houses is a delicate endeavor and crunching numbers to get them done is Rian’s specialty; people…that’s all her sister Marley’s area. So when Marley manages to catch the negative eye of one sexy Pierce and he mistakes her for her twin….oh intrigue and hilarity ensue.

Pierce’s relentless pursuit of Rian is filled with some interesting pranks, some peculiar places for steamy scenes, and one crazy brother. Ironically, Pierce and his brother are in the same business and neighborhood as Rian and Marley’s. A mix of office romance with forbidden romance as these two battle for real estate in the Hamptons and each other hearts. A twist of circumstance and readers won’t be sure where loyalties truly lie and if these two can find that elusive HEA after a torrid summer affair.

Hunting puts out fiery after fiery read. Always win a vein of hilarity her books are real romance with an air of lightness one every story. There’s always an ulterior motive, another line of some a-hole character to mess up our hero and heroines carefully laid plans. But Hunting manages to build characters you despise as much as you love. While their stories unfold prepare to fight alongside them as they try to reach their …ahem…climax; these characters will become your beloved friends and you’ll be begging for more!


i flipping love you- New Cover.jpg SHE’S GOT CURB APPEAL. HE’S A FIXER UPPER…

From New York Times bestselling author Helena Hunting comes I Flipping Love You, a love story about flipping houses, taking risks, and landing that special someone who’s move-in ready.

Rian Sutter grew up with the finer things in life. Spending summers in the Hamptons was a normal occurrence for her until her parents lost everything years ago. Now Rian and her sister are getting their life, and finances, back on track through real estate. Not only do they buy and sell houses to the rich and famous but they finally have the capital to flip their very own beachfront property. But when she catches the attention of a sexy stranger who snaps up every house from under her, all bets are off…

Pierce Whitfield doesn’t normally demo kitchens, install dry wall, or tear apart a beautiful woman’s dreams. He’s just a down-on-his-luck lawyer who needed a break from the city and agreed to help his brother work on a few homes in the Hamptons. When he first meets Rian, the attraction is undeniable. But when they start competing for the same pieces of prime real estate, the early sparks turn into full-blown fireworks. Can these passionate rivals turn up the heat on their budding romance—without burning down the house?

ORDER YOUR COPY NOW!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-a-Million | IndieBound | Powells

“Fun, sexy, and full of heart…Helena Hunting has done it again!”—USA Today bestselling author Melanie Harlow (on Shacking Up)

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CHAPTER 1
ANGRY HOT GUY

RIAN
I flip through my stack of flyers, checking for a sale on the jumbo box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal so I can price match it. I’m a conscientious price matcher. I mark the sale with a big circle before tucking the red Sharpie into the front of my shirt. If I’m going to wheel and deal at the cash register, I want to make it as easy as possible for the cashier and the people in line behind me. Nothing is worse than getting stuck behind an unorganized price matcher.
I shimmy a little to the song playing over the store intercom as I toss boxes of my most favorite, unhealthy cereal in my cart. A prickly feeling climbs the back of my neck, and I shiver, glancing over my shoulder. A mom rushes past me down the aisle, her toddler leaning precariously out of the cart in an attempt to grab a box of Fruit Roll-Ups. I can’t blame him. They are artificially delicious.
But the mom-toddler combo isn’t the reason for the prickly feeling. Halfway down the aisle is a suit. A big suit. Well over six feet of man wrapped in expensive charcoal-gray fabric. He doesn’t have a cart or a basket. And he’s staring at me. Weird. I can’t look at him long enough to decide if he’s familiar or not without making it obvious that I’m staring back.
I have the urge to check my appearance, worried I have his attention because my hair is a mess, or there’s a sweat stain down the center of my back. I’m not particularly appealing at the moment. I’ve just come from a boot camp class at this new gym my twin sister forced me to try out.
Marley bought an online two-for-one coupon for forty bucks, so now I have to attend six of these stupid classes with her. I managed to get out of last week’s class, but she wouldn’t let me escape two weeks in a row. My tank is still dewy, post-exertion, I have terrible under-boob sweat, and my thong is all wonky. If I were alone in this aisle, I’d for sure fix the last issue, but suit guy is here so I must leave the thong where it is for now, wedged uncomfortably between my vagina lips.
The suit quickly shifts his attention to the shelves and picks up the jar directly in front of him, which happens to contain prunes. He inspects it, then maybe realizes what it is, because he rushes to return it, exchanging it for another item. I bite back a smile, pleased that even in my disgusting state I’m being checked out.
As suit man gives the shelf in front of him his full attention, I return the checkout favor. His attire and his posture scream money and a twinge of something like longing combined with jealousy makes my throat momentarily tight. At one time, price matching was a practice I would’ve laughed at—like an entitled jerk—now it’s a necessity.
Suit man must be warm, considering it’s late April and we’re experiencing temperatures far above average for this time of year. Based on the tapered fit of his suit, I’m guessing it’s a high-end brand. He’s complemented it with black patent leather shoes. Very impractical for this weather and location. Does he realize he’s in the Hamptons?
He’s wearing a watch, and from his profile, he can’t be much beyond his early thirties. I have to assume the only reason for the watch is because it’s expensive and he wants to show it off. In my head, I’ve already profiled him as a pretentious, rich prick who probably commutes to NYC a few times a week where he bones his secretary and has a penthouse with the barest of furniture. The rest of the time he works from home.
I return to shopping and continue down the aisle, in the opposite direction of the suit—it’s my way of finding out if he’s actually creeping on me or not. I keep tabs on him in my peripheral vision as I scope out more sales and more delicious, unhealthy food items. My job is to balance out all the fruit and vegetables my sister, Marley, is currently picking out in the produce section.
I grab a jar of the no-name peanut butter since we’re out and the good stuff isn’t on sale, dropping it in the cart. My phone keeps buzzing in my purse. It’s distracting, so I give up ignoring it and check my messages.
It’s my sister.
We’re in the same store. It’s not particularly huge, so I don’t know what could be so pressing that she needs to text four thousand times instead of finding me.
ABORT SHOPPING
LEAVE NOW
Meet me in parking lot
RIAN??????
Jeez. What the heck is going on? Maybe the grocery store is being robbed. Holy Hot Pockets. What if there is a grocery store heist going down? I’m about to abandon my cart in a bid to find Marley and escape the mayhem I’ve created in my head. It’s all very dramatic. As I turn, I come face-to-face with the suit.
I suck in a breath and slap my hand over my chest. The tank is still damp, and my skin’s a little gritty with salt-sweat, so I drop it quickly, because ew.
“Hi.” His expression is hard to read. He seems … smug.
“Hi, hey. Uh…” I wave a hand around in the air, a little flustered, and conflicted, because it’s not often I get approached by a guy this hot—and in a grocery store of all places. Maybe he’ll be here again next week. “I’m sorry, I’d like to stare at your pretty face, I mean…” Crap, why are words so hard? “I have to go.”
I try to step around him, but he mirrors the movement, taking a linebacker stance, as if he’s considering tackling me. Which is an odd way to stage an introduction.
“Recognize me?” he asks, one perfect eyebrow arched.
As I take him in, I wrack my brain for a time or place I might’ve run into him before. I don’t think so, though. His light brown hair is neatly styled, and the cut of his suit highlights all of his assets. Well, the visible PG ones, anyway.
He widens his stance and crosses his arms over his chest. His very broad chest. The sleeves of his suit jacket pull tight, biceps bulging and flexing. He’s a bit intimidating based on his size alone, but we’re in a public grocery store, so I feel relatively safe. And he’s just so gorgeous. Which is a silly reason not to be concerned, some of the most notorious serial killers are attractive men. Also, I need to find my sister, in case the grocery store is really under attack—although maybe this suit could save us.
I adopt his crossed arm pose, but I don’t think I look intimidating. All I succeed in doing is awkwardly squeezing my boobs together inside my damp sports bra and jabbing the right one with the Sharpie. “Should I?”
He looks me over, a slight smirk tipping his mouth. His gaze gets stuck on the Sharpie for a few seconds before they come back up to my eyes.
It’s possible I met him in a bar, but I swear I’d remember his face if I did. The bar scene is also more my sister’s speed than it is mine. Oh God. It’s also possible he’s mistaking me for her. It’s happened before.
While we look nearly identical at first to most people, we’re actually fraternal twins. After a few interactions, most people can tell us apart. I have a distinctive Marilyn Monroe mole on the right side above my lip, and my eyes are amber, where Marley’s are closer to green. My mouth is too big for my face, my lips a little too full and my nose too small. At least that’s my perception. Marley’s also the more outgoing of the two of us and an inch taller. And about ten pounds lighter.
Marley is a little less cautious than I am with men, so there have been a few uncomfortable occasions where her previous hookups have approached me, asking why I haven’t returned their calls. It’s too bad if this is the case, because this guy is inordinately attractive and it would be nice if he wasn’t one of my sister’s castoffs.
His face is a masterpiece of masculine perfection; straight nose, high cheekbones, an angular jawline that could cut glass, full lips. Especially the bottom one. The kind of full that makes me think of kissing, with tongue, of course. He’s all-American handsome with a shot of alpha hotness. It’s a lethal combination for the state of my already damp panties.
“I recognize you.” He has a low, rough voice, like the delicious scrape of fine grit sandpaper.
He breaks me out of my ogle daze. He must think I’m Marley. I’m actually rather disappointed. “I think maybe you’ve mistaken me for someone else.”
“Oh no, sweetheart.” His gaze rakes over me again. I feel very naked all of a sudden. And hot. It’s really hot in here. “You drive a powder-blue Buick.”
“How the heck—”
“I knew it!” he shouts, eyes alight with some kind of weird, victorious satisfaction as he points a long finger with a blue-black nail at me. Maybe he slammed it in a door or something. Or based on the way he’s rudely pointing, maybe someone slammed it for him. “I fucking knew it! You hit my car.”
I definitely would’ve remembered hitting someone’s car, especially if a guy this good looking was driving it. He should probably come with a warning, like: Panties may combust if you get too close, or something. I take a step back since he’s all up in my grill and clearly he’s not looking to flirt like I originally thought. “I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about.”
“Don’t play dumb with me! You think you can flip your ponytail”—he reaches out and flicks the end, which is rather startling—“flash a smile and some cleavage, and it’s going to get you out of this. Well, think again, sweetheart. I guarantee my paint is still all over your bumper.” He’s leaning over me, face way too close to mine. So close I can see tiny gold flecks in his deep green eyes. They’re an unusual shade. Dark like pine tree needles.
And he’s chewing gum. Juicy Fruit. I can smell it when he breathes in my face. I would’ve expected a man like him to chew something more along the lines of Polar Ice, or Arctic Ice—strong mint.
I put a hand on his chest and take one deliberate step backward as he opens his mouth to resume his tangent. It’s a solid chest. Extremely hard. His gaze darts down, brows furrowed. I use his distracted state to my advantage. “First of all…” I point my finger in his face, like he did to me. “Don’t ‘sweetheart’ me. That’s condescending. Secondly, I’m sure I would’ve noticed if I’d hit another car. Thirdly, there are literally hundreds of powder-blue Buicks in this stupid city. It’s not an uncommon car. And I’d like to point out, that the cleavage comment was completely unnecessary and unwarranted and actually, pretty damn sexist.”
He blinks a couple of times, possibly taken aback. That expression doesn’t last long. His lip curls in a sneer and that pretty all-American handsomeness morphs into downright malevolent hotness. “Nice try, sweetheart. But there’s no way I’d forget you.” His gaze sweeps over me—it’s not in an unappreciative way either.
I poke his hard chest. “Stop leering at me, you pervert. I don’t know what kind of drugs you’ve been snorting, but I assure you, you’ve got the wrong person.”
“Oh shit!” my sister’s voice comes from behind me.
I turn to find Marley doing an about-face, and then she breaks into a little grapevine step as she moves back toward me. Her eyes are wide, mouth contorted into some kind of grimace as she grabs my wrist.
“What the fuck? There are two of you?” hot-crazy guy asks, eyes bouncing between us.
“We gotta go.” Marley latches onto my hand and drags me down the aisle, away from crazy-hot suit.
“Whoa! Wait a damn second!”
Hot suit makes a grab for me, but Marley yanks me out of the way and shoves my shopping cart at him—hard. He’s not quite quick enough to get out of the way, and the corner of the cart slams right into his crotch. He doubles over with a groan and aggressively pushes the cart aside. It ricochets into a display of canned peaches, which spill into the aisle with a deafening crash.
“What the heck, Mar?”
“Come the fuck on!” She sprints down the aisle, dragging me behind her. I’d protest, but I don’t think I have much choice in the matter, considering the death grip she has on my hand, or the fact that she’s assaulted the sexy-crazy suit with my shopping cart.
Marley fast-walks to the exit, glancing over her shoulder. “Act natural.”
“Will you tell me what’s going on? Who is that guy?”
She flips her hair over her shoulder and smiles as we pass the cashiers and the automatic doors open. Marley fast-walks down the sidewalk toward our car. “I may have tapped that guy’s car last Saturday when I was shopping.”
I stop walking, which brings her to a jarring halt. She yanks on my arm. “Seriously, come on. I’ll explain when we’re in the car.”
“Nope. No way. You explain now.”
Her eyes are bouncing all over the place. “It’s not a big deal. I just grazed his bumper.” Marley spin and tries to push me forward from behind. “Now let’s get out of here before he finds us again. We should probably shop somewhere else for a while.”
I stumble forward a step and then spin away from her. “You hit that guy’s car?”
“It was more of a graze. At least I think it was.” She wrings her hands and makes her oh crap face.
Now crazy-hot suit guy seems a lot less crazy and much more justified in his reaction. Except for the cleavage comment. That was still unnecessary. “It sure didn’t seem like nothing with the way he freaked out in there.”
“He’s probably overreacting. Where are your keys?” She’s still wringing her hands.
I pat my hip with the intention of keeping my purse safe and away from my sister. Except all I end up patting is my actual hip. I look down, running my hands over my stomach, searching for the cheap, faux-leather knockoff. “Oh fudge.”
“What?”
“My purse. It’s in the cart. I have to go back and get it.”
Marley grabs the back of my tank. “You can’t! What if he’s still in there?”
“It has my identification in it, Marley. And my bankcards, and my money, and keys to the car and the apartment. I can’t leave it in there!”
Marley flails and paces around in a circle. “What if he’s waiting for us to come back and get it?”
“You can stay here if you want, but I’m going back for it. I’m not leaving my purse behind because you hit some guy’s car in a parking lot. I can’t believe you just drove away!”
“I thought I tapped it, and then I panicked.” Her fingers are at her mouth now. “I didn’t want to drive up our insurance premiums over some guy and his Tesla.”
“You hit a Tesla?” This keeps getting worse.
“Anyone who has the money to buy a Tesla has the money to fix it, right?” Marley says.
“So you drove off! Jeez, Marley. What were you thinking?” I shake my head. I’d like to say I’m surprised by this, but sadly I’m not. Marley doesn’t always use common sense in day-to-day life.
“I don’t know. I wasn’t thinking. That’s the problem, I guess.”
I’m about to go back into the store, but stop short at the sight of the suit leaning against the side of my car, one ankle crossed over the other, all calm like. Dangling from a single finger is my knockoff, hot-pink Coach purse. “Forget something?”

Copyright © 2018 by Helena Hunting in I Flipping Love You and reprinted with permission from St. Martin’s Paperbacks.


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New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy.
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APOLLYCON 2018 – An Event Recap

Y’all! I am insanely impressed with Apollycon and this was my first year going! I was so nervous to be meeting some of my favorite people on this planet in a new city and with such a large crowd but the staff made it so easy!

Our goal was clear and ready when me and my bestie (BookNerd1107) headed out on Thursday. Y’all I did NOT think I was going to be as excited as I was to be in my nation’s capital but boy… I saw the Pentagon and my mind couldn’t fathom seeing something like that. Now I’m a homebody (ah duh….I READ…A LOT) and having a travel bug is something I’ve wished for but never gotten (#anxietymuch) but having someone explain history and stories of battles that went on when you’re seeing a new city and historical buildings is incredibly humbling.

But on to what you really came here for…the swag, the authors, and the Q&A with Kristen Ashley!

Sponsored by the amazing Tijan, the yellow and grey bags we got not only sported our badge level (Apollyon crew where you at?!) but the donations from publishers was astonishing! With books, and special edition ARC, journals, buttons, bookmarks, and a cute purple beanie I was awed at how MUCH each bag held. Also hello stylish travel bag going forward. Wear that bookgeek merch with pride!

Also included was the queen of Apollycon herself, Jennifer L Armentrout’s latest title The Prophecy with a signed poster for the main character and our model of honor, Mr. Drew Leighty (#swoon).

Also does it make me geeky to love my badge/lanyard and button to an extreme extent? Cause I do! The cute button from LapelYeah is seriously one of my favorite swag items I got the whole time.

Not only did we got the main swag bag, there was a sweet and simple one for the MOVIE PREMIERE (Which I can’t believe existed!) and from the 1001 Dark Nights Sparkler.

Now to those that have never been to a 1001 Dark Nights Sparkler, I must warn you, it is MADNESS! With a handful of their authors waiting at tables, you are handed a card. The goal? Ask each author your question and record the answers. Fully correct cards result in the chance to win a gift card! Not even with the chance to win a gift card, this event was chaotically fun. The mad-dash, shouting of questions, and laughter at outlandish responses put our seemingly idols down to our level of ridiculousness. My questions: Wonder Woman or Catwoman? tough choice, I know, but there were…worse? ones out there. Some poor girl had to ask “hard or soft?”…bless her. My personal fave (and I’m kicking myself for not remembering who answered!) was that someone answered that they wanted Gal Gadot AS Catwoman…..MREOWER! Love it!

Once again our model of honor, Drew, took the opportunity to reveal his horror fan-made movie of Never Hike Alone, a dedication to the Friday the 13th series, to a giggly and hilariously loud crowd of ROMANCE fans on Friday night. Now I, thankfully, am a horror fan and the movie was actually really good. With a small cast, simple plot, and well shot footage, the homage to Jason Voorhees was filled with the right level of jump scares and classic horror-humor (i.e. you’re an idiot…LEAVE THE BACKPACK KYLE!). With an interesting Q&A after the movie about his process and some fun facts about the movie I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this off-topic bonus content.


SATURDAY SIGNING

img_0169 KRISTEN ASHLEY – The queen of romance in my heart! Ya’ll I originally met her during the 1001 Dark Nights Sparkler (and proceeded to hold back tears witnessing her beauty). Kristen is the living embodiment of loving life, glamorous living, and all around rock chick attitude! With a kick-ass wrap dress and killer cute black pumps, KA graced the floor with her smile and general happiness to be around her fans.  I managed to get my Unfinished Hero, Deacon, and our lovely Ollie from the Honey Series signed. So glad my bestie steered me right to her when we walked in cause I was near the front of the line! Can’t wait for the Rock Chick Rendezvous in Cleveland later this year!

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Score! I got Ollie and Deacon signed <3 Plus a special ARC I won at the Brunch!

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A.L. JACKSON – If you could find the sweetest and most adorable author in the group, Amy would be my first choice! I’m not sure how someone so bright and bubbly can write such deep and heartfelt stories!! I managed to get a few backlist items from her catalog and I can’t wait to add more of her to my reading list. I may be a new fan to Jackson but trust me there is love there!

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Sad I didn’t get the title I did want but I’m excited to start some of Jackson’s backlist books!

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LAURA KAYE – My gosh..If I could pick one author who I really wanted to pick their brains, it would be Laura. She’s so engaging and makes it a point to let you know she’s listening to you and hears what you say. I love any author who takes the chance to write about characters with disabilities or difficulties that most authors may shy away from. While I didn’t get a chance to thank her for that in person, I KNOW she know show much her fans lover her.

P.S. She did the cutest thing when I walked up offering all of her swag and asking if there where any new titles I needed or missing blacklist books I could buy. I don’t know why that stood out to me but it was like a little shop keeper was talking to me and it was so cute!

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CORINNE MICHAELS – So my dumb butt was so out of sorts that I forgot to ask Corinne for a photo (UGH!) but bonus is I finally got a copy of One Last Time, a 5 star read y’all! Corinne was the smartest author of the bunch as she had a cute table to stand at versus get up and down and she had some of the coolest swag and bookmarks that OF COURSE…AGAIN my dumb butt didn’t grab many of. But at least Corinne is sweet and charming and made it totally worth it!

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I now have a complete Hennignton collection signed! I also got an early copy of Cooper’s story…be on the lookout for THAT review!

JAY CROWNOVER – YOU GUYS….I may or may not have been so excited to meet Jay Crownover…whom I love so much that I didn’t gran any swag from her either! Thankfully I DID get selfies with her because what else does one do when you meet Jay…you selfie your life away to the Queen of Bad Boys. Y’all if you think Jay is wacky and crazy and fun on social media, real life Jay is HYSTERICAL. I wish I could be friends with her in real life because I feel like at any moment she could make your day crazy wild fun! I’ll never understand someone who is so fun and lively in person can write such dark and deadly romance. But she says it best…bad boys ARE better. Plus I got Cable early so :p!

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HELENA HUNTING – FINALLY!!!!!!!! Helena is seriously such a badass writer, person, woman #alloftheabove!! The Pucked series upped the game (haha pun!) for me with romances once I found Alex and his teammates. Their outlandish, brazen, RIDICULOUS and sexy! If you haven’t grabbed everything this woman’s written then you need to!

Side Note: Helena…you GAVE me a book….girl….I will cherish Area 51 (pfffftttt that sounds so bad!!!!! #sorrynotsorry)

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Choosing which of these to get signed was so hard….but DAMN they thicc!

HH BONUS:  I MET RANDY BALLS! Franggy….too cute. So sweet. And he wrote a kiss to me on the cover #SWOON (Sorry to my man…but he understands me and book-boyfriends are unshakeable)

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PENNY REID – The Overlord herself! Penny’s style of writing has always stood out to me. There’s not a HUGE focus on the sexy-times (but they are still there my friends). As someone who really enjoys those times I thought that may put me off but NOPE! Her characters are intriguing and her stories are filled with so much imagination. Also, she’s hilarious and quirky and just my type of person. Plus she wins signature of the day with her note to me in MOI.

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The BEST note all day!

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LIA RILEY – The last author I saw..I of course forgot to get a photo with as well! Lia writes some sweet sports romances that I found through one of my review sites and let me tell you that she won me over with her Hellions! I may be new to her as well but I can’t wait to read more!!!



Kristen Ashley Q&A Brunch

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The AMAZING swag bag from the Brunch featured this beautiful BookBeau and Court of Candles custom candle!

After a wonderful brunch from the hotel (seriously it was DE-LISH!) Jen and Kristen shared their history of romance novel love and dedicated reading  from a young age onward. Here as some highlights from Jen’s questions and questions from readers attending:

Kristen’s toughest book to write was Golden Dynasty (part of her Fantasyland series) and she’s so proud of it. Not only the female strength of her character versus the hero’s world  but creating a whole language in another world was another challenge for Kristen.

Kristen’s writing process is that she’s an “obsessive pants-er”. She’ll go by the seat of her pants to tell her story and she doesn’t take notes to prep. “The book plays like a movie in my head and its very very hard to shut it down and start tomorrow.” Fun fact: Her cats help her step away from the story and remember to eat.

She LOVES romance. She doesn’t like to watch a television show or read a book that doesn’t have a romantic element. Though she writes contemporary, sometimes danger just happens in her books.

Another Audible exclusive book is coming! The theme will be fantasy!

Chokers. Her heroines wear them for a reason and its a real life experience. Guys, like the Hot Bunch, just like ’em.

She’s been marathoning Altered Carbon (It is SO FRICKIN GOOD TOO!) and Grace and Frankie.

If you haven’t checked out her spread in Eloquii, the brand for curvy women, you should head over to their website and check out their spotlight.

Reader Questions:

I was lucky enough to win an ARC of THE GREATEST RISK <3

What was the inspiration to write Heaven & Hell? Pat Tillman. His story truly affected her.

Have you ever been in a reading rut and what do you do to get out of it? *knocks on wood* She’s never been in one!

How do you do your world building and language creation if you fly by the seat of your pants when you write? She takes notes as she’s writing to remember things and keep track. There’s a separate notebooks “bible” for her fantasy worlds from her contemporary works.

Did you plan to tie in all of your books or did it just happen once and you get doing it? It’s because they are real to her. They carry on living in her head.

You’re a very social author as far as events; have you ever had any interesting or weird reader occurrences? No. She wants everyone to be their own person and she says “Be You” and “Let it all hang out”.

Your characters have a lot more dialogue versus description or plot explanation. Do they talk more to you than show you things? Get ready for there to be more of that. It’s just natural.

Comment from Jen : Kristen has a distinctive voice. SO TRUE!

What did you do in your research for the Honey Series? She had a boyfriend back in the day who was “adventurous”.  She saw a whipping at a club like The Honey that transfixed her because it was so beautiful, unbelievably gentle, and intimate. She was fascinated that they had an audience but they completed disappeared for the master and his submissive.

She’s just written an MMF and that was fun to research!

Would you ever consider doing a crossover with anther author? I never say never anymore. Yeah I would; for sure.

How did you pick the small town in Nebraska (for her book Complicated) because that’s where I’m from!? This is gonna seem very weird…I looked up Targets in Nebraska. And found a place close enough where Greta could get to a Target!

Are any of your characters base don real life people? Yes. A lot. Tex from the Rock Chicks Series, she live din Ava’s row house, Jet’s mom is loosely based on her own mother, Bette and Uncle Marsh are her aunt and uncle, Tod and Stevie were he neighbors when she lived in Indy’s house in Denver.


2019 Announcement

Stay updated for next year! Will I see you?

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2017 Top Reads

It’s that time again! the end of the year is my favorite because it gives me a chance to look back on all of the reading I’ve done and the crazy adventures I’ve gotten to go on. Whether it was new authors, new series, or new avenues, this year held some of the most jaw-dropping and heart-wrenching books I’ve ever read! I’ve got some of my favorites and their reviews to share with you but here’s a quick look from my Year in Review on Goodreads.

p.s. GoodReads lovers, you can add me here!

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WIN.jpg What I Need – J. Daniels

There’s something to be said about a southern gentleman who’s not afraid to talk dirty. Daniel’s CJ Tully is the perfect mix of sweet talkin’ man who will do whatever it takes to win his woman. But don’t let the cop uniform fool you….he’s downright dirty. And sweet Riley has to rumble her way around his confident feet.

Check out my full review of Tully’s tequila filled kisses here!

 

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The Deep End & The Farthest Edge – Kristen Ashley

You bet your sweet butt that KA is going to be on my list. Her latest dip into the dark erotic world of BDSM went live this year as she released two in the Honey Series. No stranger to strong men who aren’t afraid of what they like, our new heroes have a different tale to tell. With a switch up about alpha-subs and a delectable world of decadence and rules when it comes to sex, KA’s Honey Series either left you shocked or hanging on for more.

Read the full review for Olly and Amelie here and Branch & Evangeline here.

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Salvaged-cover-1.jpg Salvaged – Jay Crownover

Talk about your heroes that need saving. I had been dying for Poppy and Wheeler’s romance as it was a chance for two battered broken hearts to find love. This tear-jerker romance was one hell of a way for Crownover to end her Saints of Denver series with a BANG!

Read my full thoughts here.

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Checkmate: This is Dangerous & This is Beautiful – Kennedy Fox

Magical duo Brooke Cumberland & Lyra Parish revealed themselves as the elusive Kennedy Fox after releasing their final duet in the Checkmate series. And where the two previous duets were enemies and friends to lovers, the final pair was a heartbreaking tale of loss and what may never be. With a cliff ending for book 1 that left readers in shock, the duo closed the series with a one-two punch sure to make your top reads list.

Check out my reaction to Logan & Kayla’s tale here and their finale here.

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ALJackson-ShowMetheWayBookCover525x8_MEDIUM Show Me the Way – A.L. Jackson

My first A.L. Jackson novel and I AM HOOKED. In her new Fight For Me series, the first novel deals with single dad Rex fighting his attraction to his new neighbor Rynna. When dangers from their pasts their past threaten their lives and the life of his daughter…hold on.

Read my review of this heart-warming, coming home romance here.

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The Final Fight – J.B. Salsbury

If you’re looking for a tale that will break you apart emotionally then build you back up, then the dramatic final to Salsbury’s Fighting Series is the book for you. It’s somehow two tales in one; our hero Braden falls in love our heroine AJ but after going to war comes home a broken man who has to learn to love again.

Read the full review (with tears) here.

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IMG_2541 Hooking Up – Helena Hunting

Generally the queen of romcoms filled with slapstick humor, Hunting’s Hooking Up had readers wanting strangle our new heroine’s traitorous husband within minutes. Bit with Anarchy Amie taking charge, our sassy heroine takes charge of her life….with a new beau.

Read my (hero) spoiler-free review here.

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Ruthless King, Defiant, Queen & Sinful Empire – Meghan March

New to Meghan March these series completely blew me away with the dirtiest and darkest side of NOLA romance. Mount, the dark king of NOLA, claims our heroine Keira, body and soul, as a debt paid and the whole sordid tale spirals into madness from there. With cliff hangers and twist endings in each story, this trilogy was a journey straight to my favorite reads.

Read my initial reaction to Lachlan Mount here, to Keira standing her ground defiantly here, and the big finale of this sinful duo here.

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Honorable mentions: While I don’t review every book I read in the year, there are a few that still hit my top reads list.

 


Looking ahead…

With the close of 2017 comes the highly anticipated reads for 2018! Here’s some of my big wishes for the next 12 months:

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Dynamic duo Kennedy Fox blew us all away with their Checkmate series and as they come together for another series (technically two with the #BedtimeReads series!) we’ll get 4 novels based on the southern, country brothers of Courtney Bishop. Find out more about book one, Taming Him now.

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J. Daniels returns to her Dirty Deeds series and is bring us the heartbreaking tale of Stitch and Shayla. I cannot express how excited I am for this story! I’m all for a heartbroken man who needs some cute little lady to love him and fight for him! (In my mind it’s me, because I am claiming him!). You can check out an exclusive excerpt from Bad For You here.

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For fans of the fantasy romance Fever Series, Moning dives in again with a focus on Dani O’Malley in High Voltage. With her world seemingly in shambles after an all-encompassing battle against the Fae, a new view point and a new hero is sure to have fans begging for more!

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One of my all time favorites, Julie Ann Walker, closes out her beloved Black Knights Inc. series with Built to Last. Mysterious mercenary Angel may finally reveal his secrets as we say goodbye to this MC romance classic!

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Rom-com queen Helena Hunting teased a new book and new cover with Good Luck Charm. Her charming characters make for heartwarming, feel-good romance with no shortage of sexy times and hilarious moments. Find out more about this new standalone here.

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Beloved school teacher Josie may finally find her prince charming in Jaci Burton’s next Hope novel, One Perfect Kiss. Burton’s sweet romances have never failed to leave readers sighing and swooning over her hunky heroes. I for one can’t wait for some more wholesome romance!

THE GOOD LUCK CHARM – A Helena Hunting Cover Reveal

“If my Pucked Series had an affair with The Clipped Wings series their love child would be The Good Luck Charm.”

The Good Luck Charm by New York Times bestselling author,  Helena Hunting is coming August 7th!

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Is it love, or is she just his good luck charm? New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting absolutely delights with this witty and fun standalone romantic comedy.

Lilah isn’t sure what hurt worse: the day Ethan left her to focus on his hockey career, or the day he came back eight years later. He might think they can pick up just where they left off, but she’s no longer that same girl and never wants to be again.

Ethan Kase wants his glory days back. And that includes having Lilah by his side. With her, he was magic. They were magic. All he has to do is make her see that.

Just when Lilah might finally be ready to let him in, though, she finds out their reunion has nothing to do with her and everything to do with his game. But Ethan’s already lost her once, and even if it costs him his career, he’ll do anything to keep from losing her again.

Preorder your copy today! 
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2jlY45A
iBooks: http://apple.co/ 2zVseTj
Nook: http://bit.ly/2kqiptD
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2BFQtW8
Google Play: http://bit.ly/2AYtGbl 

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/ 2B5TaE5


CONNECT WITH HELENA

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy.

HOOKING UP – A Helena Hunting Review & Excerpt Reveal

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OMG…OMG Y’all I was not prepared for the amazingness that was Hooking Up! The follow up novel to Hunting’s Shacking Up is the perfect rollercoaster companion to her new romance series.

Where Ruby and Bane were fun times and cuteness overload, Anarchy Amie and her beau are sex on crack filled with drama, intrigue, and such a huge range of emotions. With a cluster of a wedding Anarchy Amie comes to life. Betrayed and enraged, she starts down a path that readers have been BEGGING FOR. As she escapes her world to find some peace she finally begins to let loose and remember how she used to have fun. But even a week in paradise can’t help her escape reality for long.

With the help of her friends and family that’s always had her back Amie has to piece together the life she thought she had with the life she’s always wanted. But having the one man she’s always wanted could also spell more disaster for Amie. How can she choose? Hunting doesn’t make it easy for our hero or heroine in this love story. There’s no quick fix to a tough situation. I loved EVERY second, even the tough ones that left my turning pages in anger.

I’m not going to spoil anything but let me take you on the rollercoaster that was my brain as I stayed up all one night to read Amie’s story: finally, UGH he’s such a DICK, OMG HE’S SUCH A DICK, YES girl get it, GAH such a sweetie, oh this place is lovely, AND paradise RUINED, YES PERFECT SHOT (I literally shot up in bed and was silently  fist pumping the air), oh my this is hot, OH MY this is HOT, OH MY GOD I NEED A MINUTE, you guys can DO THIS, *pushing the two of them together* just BE TOGETHER DAMMIT, YES pay for your sins, AW YEAH, oh my…sexy times!

Such a great read from start to finish that I couldn’t put it down and had be flipping pages faster and faster. Automatic 5 star and top read for this year!

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IMG_2541 Amalie Whitfield is the picture of a blushing bride during her wedding reception–but for all the wrong reasons. Instead of proclaiming his undying love, her husband can be heard, by Amalie and their guests, getting off with someone else. She has every reason to freak out, and in a moment of insanity, she throws herself at the first hot-blooded male she sees. But he’s not interested in becoming her revenge screw.

Mortified and desperate to escape the post-wedding drama, Amalie decides to go on her honeymoon alone, only to find the man who rejected her also heading to the same tiny island for work. But this time he isn’t holding back. She should know better than to sleep with someone she knows, but she can’t seem to resist him.

They might agree that what happens on the island should stay on the island, but neither one can deny that their attraction is more than just physical.

Filled with hilariously scandalous situations and enough sexual chemistry to power an airplane from New York City to the South Pacific, Hooking Up is the next standalone, laugh-out-loud romantic comedy from Helena Hunting, the New York Times bestselling author of the Pucked series and Shacking Up.

ORDER YOUR COPY

Amazon ➭ http://amzn.to/2py0mlj
CA ➭ http://amzn.to/2qzKFJb
iBooks ➭ http://apple.co/2pG28PL
B&N ➭ http://bit.ly/2pGbhrO
Kobo ➭ http://bit.ly/2qzOvBM
Google Play ➭ http://bit.ly/2pGhgwV

Add it to your Goodreads TBR ➭ http://bit.ly/2sExYNs

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 “Did you honestly think that coming here and telling me you let Brittany, of all people, blow you during our wedding reception for my benefit was going to win me back? How delusional are you?”

“Amalie, you know how this works. I love you. You’re my wife. I hold you to a higher standard. Everyone needs a mistress or two. They’re what deep throating is for, and maybe anal.”

My mouth opens and closes a few times. I can’t even process what he’s telling me. “A mistress or two?”

“For variety.”

“What about the sanctity of marriage?” I’m starting to feel ill as this new, horrifying reality sets in.

Armstrong shakes his head and purses his lips as he struggles to find the right words. “It’s really just a guideline.”

I sink into the chair, my knees weak. I thought I’d moved past all the anger and sadness into some level of acceptance, but I’ve just been slingshotted back to ground zero. My head is swimming, it feels like I’m drunk, even though I haven’t even had my morning mimosa yet. “Were you ever faithful to me? At all?”

“I’ve never had sex with anyone but you since we’ve been together.” He adds, “I’ve never kissed anyone, either.”

“I don’t understand what that means.”

“It’s just a blow job, Amalie. That’s all. Nothing more.”

“Nothing more?” I echo. “You let someone who is not me blow you at our wedding. That’s not nothing, Armstrong, that’s cheating.”

“I think you’re working under an antiquated view of what constitutes infidelity. A blow job doesn’t qualify as cheating.”

My shock seems to be boundless. “In what world?”

He rests his palm against his chest. “Amalie, you have my heart. That’s the only thing that matters here. We can work this out. It’s an excellent partnership.”

I can’t listen to any more of this. If I do, there’s a good chance I’ll end up committing murder. I don’t know what Bora Bora’s prison system is like but I’d prefer not to find out. I point to the door. “Get the fuck out.”

“Amalie, you need to be reasonable.” He’s standing right in front of me. His crotch level with my face.

“Or what?” I wonder how many times Brittany has gotten on her knees for him. I wonder if she’s the only one. It seems unlikely based on what he’s just said.

“I’m being nice right now, Amalie. You’ve had a week to adjust your expectations. And people are talking. I don’t think you really want to push my buttons any more than you already have, do you?” His eyes are dark and angry as his fingers wrap tightly around my bicep, squeezing.

“Get your hands off me!” I try to shake free of him, but his grip tightens.

My reaction is instinctual, my years of self-defense kicking in. I cock my fist and punch him square in the nuts, bringing him to his knees.

His mouth drops open in shock as he cups himself and falls to his side on the floor, curled up in the fetal position. “Why?” he gasps.

My chair tips back as I push up to stand. “Because you’re a pussy, and a cheater, and you tried to threaten me with force.” I grab my phone with shaking hands and pull up my contact list, stepping over Armstrong as I scroll to the one and only person who can help me right now.


CONNECT WITH HELENA

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy.

HOOKING UP – A Helena Hunting Chapter Reveal

IMG_2541 Amalie Whitfield is the picture of a blushing bride during her wedding reception–but for all the wrong reasons. Instead of proclaiming his undying love, her husband can be heard, by Amalie and their guests, getting off with someone else. She has every reason to freak out, and in a moment of insanity, she throws herself at the first hot-blooded male she sees. But he’s not interested in becoming her revenge screw.

Mortified and desperate to escape the post-wedding drama, Amalie decides to go on her honeymoon alone, only to find the man who rejected her also heading to the same tiny island for work. But this time he isn’t holding back. She should know better than to sleep with someone she knows, but she can’t seem to resist him.

They might agree that what happens on the island should stay on the island, but neither one can deny that their attraction is more than just physical.

Filled with hilariously scandalous situations and enough sexual chemistry to power an airplane from New York City to the South Pacific, Hooking Up is the next standalone, laugh-out-loud romantic comedy from Helena Hunting, the New York Times bestselling author of the Pucked series and Shacking Up.

PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY

Amazon ➭ http://amzn.to/2py0mlj
CA ➭ http://amzn.to/2qzKFJb
iBooks ➭ http://apple.co/2pG28PL
B&N ➭ http://bit.ly/2pGbhrO
Kobo ➭ http://bit.ly/2qzOvBM
Google Play ➭ http://bit.ly/2pGhgwV

Add it to your Goodreads TBR ➭ http://bit.ly/2sExYNs


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One

Wedding Unbliss

Amie

This is the happiest day of my life. I allow that thought to roll around in my head, trying to figure out why it doesn’t seem to resonate the way it should. This should be the happiest day of my life. So I’m not exactly certain why the uneasy feeling I associate with cold feet is getting worse rather than dissipating. I’ve already done the hard part; walked down the aisle and said “I do.”

My husband excused himself to go to the bathroom several minutes ago and, based on Armstrong’s itinerary for the day, speeches are supposed to begin promptly at eight-thirty. According to my phone, that’s less than two minutes from now, and he’s not here. The emcee for the evening is awaiting Armstrong’s return before he begins. And then the real party can start. The one where we get to celebrate our commitment to each other as partners for life. As in the rest of my breathing days. Dear God, why does that make my stomach twist?

I sip my white wine. Armstrong pointed out that red is not a good idea with my dress, even though it’s my preference. Besides, I don’t want it to stain my teeth. That would make for bad pictures.

I glance around the hall and see my parents, who are probably celebrating the fact that I didn’t walk down the aisle with a convicted felon. And frankly, so am I. My dating history pre-Armstrong wasn’t fabulous.

The sheer number of people in attendance spikes my anxiety. Speaking in front of all of these people makes me want to drink more, which is a bad idea. Tipsy speeches could lead to saying the wrong thing. I check my phone under the table again. It’s after eight-thirty. The longer Armstrong takes to return, the further behind we’ll get. The music playlist, devised by Armstrong with painstaking efficiency, leaves no room for tardiness. If we don’t start on time I’ll have to take out a song, or possibly two, to compensate for his delay and he’s selected the order in such a way as to make that difficult and that will annoy him. I just want today to be perfect. I want it to be reflective of my decision to marry Armstrong. That I, Amalie Whitfield, can make good choices and am not a disgrace to my family.

“Where the hell is he?” I scan the room and take another small sip of my wine. I should switch to water soon so I don’t end up drunk, especially later, when all of this is over and we can celebrate our lifelong commitment to each other without clothes on. I’m hopeful it will last more than five minutes.

Ruby, my maid of honor and best friend for the past decade, puts a hand on my shoulder. “Would you like Bancroft to find Armstrong?”

Bancroft, or Bane for short, is Ruby’s boyfriend who she’s been living with for several months. Recently I find myself getting a little jealous of how affectionate they still are with each other, even after all this time. Cohabitation hasn’t slowed them down on the sex or their PDA. I have hope that Armstrong and I will be more like Bane and Ruby now that we’ll be sharing the same bed every night.

I’m about to tell Ruby to give him another minute when a low buzz suddenly fills the hall. It sounds like a school PA system. I start to panic—they can’t start the speeches without Armstrong at my side. What’s the point of speeches if the groom isn’t present?

I’m halfway out of my seat, ready to tell the deejay, or whoever is behind the mic, he needs to wait, when a very loud moan echoes through the room. The acoustics are phenomenal in here, it’s why we chose this venue.

I glance at Ruby to make sure I’m not hearing things. Her eyes are wide. The kind of wide associated with shock. The same shock I’m feeling.

Another moan reverberates through the sound system, followed by the words, “Oh, fuuuck.”

A collective gasp ripples through the now-silent crowd. While the words themselves are scandalous among these guests, it’s the voice groaning them that makes me sit up straighter, and simultaneously consider hiding under the table.

“Fuck yeah. Ah, suck it. That’s it. Deep throat it like a good little slut. Fuuuuuccckkkkk.”

My mouth drops and I look to Ruby to ensure I have not completely lost my mind. “Is that—” I don’t finish the sentence. I already know the answer to the question, so it’s pointless to ask. Besides, I’m cut off by yet another loud groan. I clap a hand over my mouth because I’m not sure I’m able to close it, my disbelief is as vast as the ocean.

Ruby’s expression mirrors mine, except hers is incredibly animated since she’s an actress. “Oh my God. Is that Armstrong?” Her words are no more than a whisper, but they sound very much like a scream. Oh no, wait, that’s just Armstrong on the verge of an orgasm. But these sounds are nothing like the ones he makes when he’s in the throes of passion with me.

I clutch Ruby’s hand. The next sound that comes from him is a hybrid between a hyena laugh and a wolf baying at the moon. And every guest at our wedding is hearing the same thing I am. Our wedding. Someone other than me is blowing my husband at my own wedding. My mortification knows no end.

I grab the closest bottle of wine and dump the contents into my glass. Some of it sloshes over the edge and onto the crisp white tablecloth. It doesn’t matter. There’s plenty more where it came from. I chug the glass, then grab Ruby’s.

People lean in and whisper to each other, eyes lift to the speakers. A few people, the ones who are probably just here for the social-ladder-climbing potential, question who it is.

“Is the deejay watching porn?” That comment comes from a table full of mostly drunk singles in their early twenties.

Several eyes shift my way as I carelessly down Ruby’s wine and someone asks where the groom has disappeared to.

The grunts and groans grow terrifyingly louder. This is nothing like what I’m used to in bed with Armstrong. The dirty words aren’t something he ever uses with me, mostly it’s just noises and sometimes a “Right there” or “I’m close,” but that’s about it. He’s never talked to me like he is to the woman currently providing oral pleasure. And I’m very adept at oral. Although with Armstrong it’s very polite, neat oral, with no sounds other than the occasional hum. Slurping is uncivilized and a definite no-no.

I reach past Ruby for the bottle of red since I don’t really give a flying fuck about purple teeth right now. As I sink low in my seat I pour another glass of wine, surveying the people in the ballroom from behind the cover of the centerpiece. The centerpieces are huge and excessive and I don’t like them at all, but at least provides a protective barrier between the guests and my disgust, which I’m certain they must share. He sounds like a wild animal rutting. It is entirely unsexy. I have no idea who he’s getting intimate with, but I’m suddenly very glad it’s not me.

And doesn’t that tell me more about our relationship than it should.

It’s only been about thirty seconds—the most humiliating thirty seconds of my life—before Armstrong comes. How do I know this? Because he says, very clearly, “Keep sucking, baby, I’m coming.”

And “baby,” whoever she is, makes these horrific gurgling noises. It sounds like some form of alien communication. It’s way over the top, and apparently Armstrong is loving it, based on the string of vile profanity that spews from his asshole mouth.

“Holy crap. Is this for real? That was really fast,” Ruby mutters.

I guzzle my glass of wine. Then decide the glass is unnecessary and take a long swig from the bottle before Ruby snatches it away. Wine dribbles down my chin and onto my chest, staining the white satin purple. My dress is ruined. I should be freaking out. But I really don’t care.

“Come on,” Ruby tugs on my hand. “We need to get you out of here while people are still distracted.”

My older brother Pierce and the emcee are standing in the middle of the hall, gesturing wildly to the speakers above us. My other brother, Lawson, is on his way toward the podium in an attempt to do something. I don’t think there’s anything he can do to stop this train wreck from there.

Ruby tugs again, but I’m frozen, still trying to figure out what exactly just happened. Well, I know what’s happened. I just can’t believe it.

The sound of a zipper and the rustle of clothes follows. “Thanks for that, now I’ll be able to last later tonight,” Armstrong says.

“What about me?” A female asks. Her voice is nasally and whiny.

“What about you?”

“Well I helped you, aren’t you going to help me?”

“Didn’t you come with a date?”

“Well, yes, but—” God her voice is familiar. I just can’t figure out where I know it from.

“My cousin, right? He loves my sloppy seconds. Speeches are starting. I gotta get back to my ball and chain.”

Gasps of horror ripple through the room, followed by a few giggles. These people really are assholes.

I think I’m going to throw up. I can’t believe he’s going to come out here and pretend nothing just happened. Like some other woman didn’t just have her lips around his cock. His distinctly average cock. Maybe even slightly below average in length, if I’m being one hundred percent honest.

A door opens and closes.

Lawson turns on the mic behind the podium and taps it, sending screeching feedback through the room, making people cringe. Too bad no one did that a minute ago.

Murmuring grows louder and glances flicker to the head table and then away as Brittany Thorton, a seriously skanky debutante, comes strutting through the doors, using a compact to check her lipstick. She’s made it her mission to attempt to get into the pants of half the eligible men in this room. She’s followed, not five seconds later, by a very smug-looking Armstrong.

“I’m going to kill him.” I grab the closest steak knife, but it appears my hasty, and possibly felonious, plan is unnecessary. My brothers leave their respective posts and stalk toward him. Across the room my mother is gripping my father’s arm, whispering furiously in his ear. Great. Just what I need, additional family drama.

“Oh shit,” Ruby gasps.

I follow her gaze to find Bane converging on Armstrong with my brothers. Bancroft is a tank and he used to play professional rugby. I’ve seen him with his shirt off, he’s built like a superhero and he’ll probably crush Armstrong, or at least break something. Possibly multiple somethings.

For a second I consider that Ruby should probably stop Bane from destroying Armstrong’s pretty, regal face, but then I realize I don’t actually care. In fact, the possibility that he might break Armstrong’s perfectly straight nose fills me with glee. Armstrong’s wellbeing is no longer my concern, it’s more about Bane ending up in prison for murder.

“I hope Armstrong has a good plastic surgeon, he’s going to need it once Bane is done with him.” Ruby echoes my internal hopes and her chair tips as she jumps up. “Come on, let’s get you out of here.” She nods to the right.

I notice my mother and father engaged in a heated discussion with Armstrong’s parents. I really don’t need this right now. Not the drama. Not the humiliation. All I wanted was a nice wedding. Instead I end up with a husband who gets a blow job during our reception—and it’s broadcast to everyone attending.

Ruby urges me into action. “Don’t worry about them. Get your stuff and we’ll get you the hell out of here. I’ll have the limo meet you by the entrance near your bridal suite as soon as I can.”

I nod and stumble unsteadily to my feet, thanks to having consumed the better part of a bottle of wine in the last minute and a half. It’s amazing how ninety seconds can change a person’s entire life.

All hell breaks loose as more men jump in to either pummel or extract Armstrong from the pummeling. I grab my clutch and phone from the table, gather up my stupid, too puffy gown, and head for the bridal suite, where I had prepared for what was supposed to be the most amazing day of my life. And now it’s likely the worst, at least I hope the mortification level I’m experiencing can’t exceed this. I feel like the foulest version of Cinderella ever.

I rush down the empty hall and grab the doorknob as I fumble around in my clutch for the key. I’m surprised when it turns. I thought I’d locked it before we left for the ceremony. Regardless, I need to get away from everyone before I either lose it or commit a felony. Maybe both. Murder in the first. Armstrong will be my victim. And maybe that horrible skank, Brittany.

I thrust the door open and slam it closed behind me, locking it from the inside. Tears threaten to spill over and ruin my makeup. Not that it matters since there’s no way I’m going out there again. I can’t believe my forever lasted less than twelve hours. I can’t believe the man I’m supposed to spend the rest of my life loving couldn’t be faithful to me for even one day. What the hell is wrong with me? With him? I’m as devastated as I am angry and embarrassed. Once I annul this farce of a marriage I’ll become a spinster. I should probably go ahead and adopt six or seven cats tonight.

“I need to get out of this dress,” I say to myself. I reach behind me and pull the bow at the base of my spine. Instead of unfurling, it knots and I only succeed in pulling it tighter. Of course my dress has to be difficult. I growl my annoyance and rush over to my dressing table where my makeup and perfume are scattered from earlier today. Half a mimosa sits unconsumed beside the vase of red roses Armstrong had delivered.

The card read: I can’t wait to spend forever loving you.

What a load of bullshit. I drain the contents of the champagne flute, not caring that the drink is warm and flat. Then I throw the glass, because it feels good and the sound of shattering crystal is satisfying. Next I heave the vase of roses, which explodes impressively against the wall, splattering water and shards of glass across the floor.

I yank out a couple of the drawers and find a pair of scissors. They actually look more like gardening shears and seem rather out of place, but I don’t question it. Instead I reach behind me with my back to the mirror and awkwardly try to cut myself free. It’s not easy with the way I have to crane my neck.

“Goddammit! I need to get out of this stupid dress!” I yell at my reflection. I think I might actually be losing it just a touch now. I stop messing around with the laces in the back and shove the scissors down the front. I nearly nick myself with the blade—they’re a lot sharper than I realized—but that doesn’t slow me down. I start hacking my way through the bodice; layers of satin, lace, and intricate beading sliced apart with every vicious snip.

I just want out of this nightmare.

 


CONNECT WITH HELENA

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy.

EYE CANDY – A Halloween Anthology Review

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FALLEN CREST NIGHTMARE by Tijan

Not having read the Fallen Crest series I was a little lost with the characters and their connections in Tijan’s short story. Without that….this was one scary, horror novella. The whole story is a bit uncomfortable from beginning to end. There are characters with drinking problems (despite being in college…I think), a serial killer on the lose, and just all around odd relationships. I didn’t feel that it truly fit in with the other more jovial novellas of the anthology. But for those that are fans of darker romance…this could beep your alley.

SO MUCH MORE by J. Daniels

MY BAMA BOYS. I laughed. I cried. I needed a minute to compose myself. Then I cried again. Daniels’ gives us another look into each Bama Boy & Girl in our lovable gang and how they are handling life. There’s Ben & Mia with adorable Prince Nolan (#RYAN! OMG! J BETTER WRITE THE ONE STORY WE’VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR!) Then we have the  jaw-dropingly dirty Reed and Beth who somehow have a heartfelt and naughty  moment at the same time.  Luke and Tessa’s short story will leave you in tears (with only a little laugher ) but OMG i can’t give any of them away. And finally CJ…sweet, southern, sexy CJ will leave you all in bouncy squeaky masses of happiness. I LOVED THIS LOOK IN TO OUR BAMA FAMILY!

GETTING DOWN by Helena Hunting

Hunting’s new world of Bane and Ruby is back! We’ve got a sexy sneak peek in to the new couple’s life as a Halloween party turns in to a costume gala. We UNFORTUNATELY get to see Amie with her fiancé Armstrong as he continues to be the douche-canoe (I’d say pardon my French but we all know we’re supposed to hate him) we all know and hate him to be. BUT Hunting likes to tease us to the story of HOOKING UP as there is an interesting testosterone battle between Armstrong and his brother, Lex. WHAT IS HAPPENING? Now we must all wait for Amie’s story, HOOKING UP coming later this year to find out what’s going to go down.

UNSAFE HAVEN by Bella Jewel

Jewel’s short story was another heartfelt halloween party. I don’t know the previous characters stories but Jewel does a good job setting it up with letting you know who the story is truly going to be about. We meet Jade and Oliver, two shy and quiet people who work at a women’s shelter and obviously come from rougher pasts. When terror strikes the shelter on the night of the Halloween party, somehow Oliver and Jade have to help figure out what’s going on. All while navigating how they may feel for one another.

THE PUMPKIN THAT WAS STUFFED by Tara Sivec

Ok this last novella was just plain wacky….so much craziness! We follow Noel as she tries to navigate her family during a halloween themed wedding. There’s a neighborly feud with the house across the street the makes her father bonkers….I mean i was generally embarrassed for this man and his antics. Noel’s new husband Sam is sweet and caring but his best friends (who is the groom) is also on the wacky side. Although this novella is one the oddball side, it’s sweet and ends on a happy note.


A frightfully good time! Dive into these Halloween novellas from bestselling authors Tijan, J. Daniels, Helena Hunting, Bella Jewel and Tara Sivec. Featuring stories set in the worlds of their popular series.

Tijan’s Fallen Crest crew are back for a weekend of mischief that takes a sinister turn; all four couples from J. Daniels’ Alabama Summer series gear up for Halloween in their own sexy ways, with a special surprise at the end; Helena Hunting’s characters from Shacking Up plan a Halloween gala that features a few ghouls and witches; Bella Jewel brings the chills and thrills in her suspenseful take on Halloween night; and Tara Sivec gathers the Holiday family together one last time as they try to make this ghostly holiday one to remember—or one they’d rather forget…

Cozy up with a mug of hot cider on a dark night and fall under the spell of this Halloween anthology!

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About the Authors:

Bella Jewel is a USA Today bestselling author of over 18 e-books, including the popular Alphas Heart eOriginal series with St. Martin’s Press. She lives in North Queensland where she’s working on her next novel.

Tijan is a New York Times Bestselling author of the Carter Reed Series, the Fallen Crest Series, and the Broken and Screwed Series among others. She lives in north Minnesota.

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto. She writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy.

Tara Sivec is a USA Today best-selling author and the Best Indie Author in the Indie Romance Convention Reader’s Choice Awards in 2014. She lives in Ohio with her husband and two children.

J. Daniels is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Sweet Addiction series, the Alabama Summer series, and the Dirty Deeds series. J grew up in Baltimore and resides in Maryland with her family.

 

Connect with the authors:

Bella Jewel: http://bellajewelbooks.com

Tijan: http://www.tijansbooks.com

Tara Sivec: http://tarasivec.com

J. Daniels: http://authorjdaniels.com

 

SHACKING UP – A Helena Hunting Q&A and Review

Accidental lip locks don’t generally end in HEA…but in HH’s world that’s just what you’re gunna get.

In typical “I inconvenienced you so here’s how I’ll make it up to you” trope fashion: Bane has to make this right and hire Rub to stay with him and take care of his…..exotic pets (and that is not a euphemism). Bane and Ruby are two peas in a pod. There’s an easy chemistry between the two of them shows form their first..ahem…interaction.

Ruby is a bit of a spitfire and has the well-known Hunting Heroine sass that matches Bane’s sarcasm and makes for some entertaining scenes. Not to mention these two seem to find themselves in sexually tense situation more often than not.

Of course they’ve got to blur the line between business and pleasure to find out if that tension is worth cutting. Bane doesn’t want to overstep Ruby’s bounds but he can’t resist. Ruby knew that the stranger that kissed her and started this whole debacle would be memorable but she didn’t plan on life-altering.

So excited to be back in the Hunting world and am so hoping for more in this steamy new series. Plus…rugby players…i mean they’re just the European version of sexy hockey players right?!

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A STANDALONE Romantic Comedy

SHACKING UP
by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting!

ShackingUp.jpgRuby Scott is months behind on rent and can’t seem to land a steady job. She has one chance to turn things around with a big audition. But instead of getting her big break, she gets sick as a dog and completely bombs it in the most humiliating fashion. All thanks to a mysterious, gorgeous guy who kissed—and then coughed on—her at a party the night before.

Luckily, her best friend might have found the perfect opportunity; a job staying at the lavish penthouse apartment of hotel magnate Bancroft Mills while he’s out of town, taking care of his exotic pets. But when the newly-evicted Ruby arrives to meet her new employer, it turns out Bane is the same guy who got her sick.

Seeing his role in Ruby’s dilemma, Bane offers her a permanent job as his live-in pet sitter until she can get back on her feet. Filled with hilariously awkward encounters and enough sexual tension to heat a New York City block, Shacking Up, from NYT and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting, is sure to keep you laughing and swooning all night long.

ADD IT TO YOUR GOODREADS

ORDER YOUR COPY NOW

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CHECK OUT AN EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT HERE


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Describe Shacking Up using no more than 140 characters (a la Twitter).

Sexy, quirky, with enough sexual tension to light your underwear on fire.

 

Where did you get inspiration for the character’s names, particularly Bancroft aka Bane?

Once I met a police officer (I wasn’t doing anything illegal) who introduced himself as Bancroft. I thought that was his last name, so I sassily introduced myself by my last name as well. Then he corrected me, telling me that his first name was Bancroft, and I felt obviously ridiculous. He was a mammoth man. He practically had to duck through doorways, so I put that one in the name bank for a rainy day. I also thought it was rather hilarious that it could be shortened to Bane—as in the bane of my existence, which we know Bancroft certainly is not. Ruby is a spunky name and I thought reflected the heroine’s fiery personality.

 

Shacking Up is hilarious! How easily does the banter between the characters come for you? Do you ever struggle writing the humor in your books?

With Ruby and Bane the banter came easily because there weren’t a lot of social constraints or limitations for them. At the beginning they’re working under the premise of a business arrangement, so the pressure is off and Ruby isn’t really one to hold back,. Neither is Bane for that matter. I have such a fun time creating off the wall, sometimes sexually tense scenes, especially with these two.

 

Do you ever make yourself laugh when writing a scene?

Yes. I feel weird saying that, but there are times when I’m imagining what is happening as I’m writing and thinking “this is just ridiculous”. My hope is that if I think it’s ridiculous, so will other people, and it will inspire the same reaction. Francesca certainly helped make it a lot easier to fit in fun, light-hearted situations.

 

What inspired Bane’s exotic choice in pets?

Ferrets are freaking adorable, but they are menaces if they’re left to their own devices. They’re also a lot like dogs and cats, but they require a different kind of care, the fact that they’re illegal in NYC also helped. As for Tiny—I think a lot of people would be reluctant to take care of a giant spider, no matter how cool they are as pets. I felt like both of them would be lend for some funny situations.

 

The heroes in your Pucked series are all hockey stars, and Bane in Shacking Up is an ex-rugby player. Is it safe to say you have a thing for athletes?

I guess you could say I have a fascination with athletes. That level of physical fitness takes an extraordinary amount of discipline, plus STAMINA!!! More than just being an athlete, I have an affinity for heroes who show loyalty and determination and who are just as much about brain as brawn.

 

Ruby is a bit of a rebel, defying her family to go after her dreams. What do you love most about her?

I love that despite things not always going her way, she refuses to take the easy way out. Our paths are not always linear and Ruby is very willing to make concessions where she needs to in order to prove to herself and her family that she can attain her goals.

 

Why are Bane and Ruby so perfect for each other?

They’re both very goal oriented people with the same core values. Ruby is a firecracker and Bane needs someone with that level of sass to challenge him. For Ruby, Bane is an inherent caretaker, BUT he tries not to force that care on her which is something she can appreciate.

 

Are there any books or authors you’re really excited about right now?

I’m excited for Ann Marie Walkers BLACK TIE OPTIONAL. I recently devoured Jana Aston’s Grind Me Series and Debra Anastasia is writing the most awesome book right now, and I can’t wait until it’s ready for public consumption.


CONNECT WITH HELENA

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy.

SHACKING UP – A Helena Hunting Excerpt

A STANDALONE Romantic Comedy coming May 30, 2017

SHACKING UP
by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

EXCERPT:

She taps the arm of her chair and regards me for a few seconds. “So . . . that woman you were with at the engagement party, I’m guessing she’s not your girlfriend or anything? I don’t need to worry about her freaking out because another woman is living in your condo?”

“You mean Brittany? Uh, no. She’s definitely not my girlfriend.”

“Good to know.”

“With all the travel a girlfriend hasn’t been all that practical.”

She cocks her head. “What do you mean?”

“When I played professional rugby I was on the road a lot. And now it seems like I’ll be on the road more than I anticipated. At least for a while. It makes it difficult to get involved.”

“Ah. I understand. Theater is challenging like that, too. The hours are odd since performances are typically in the evenings and on the weekends. Unless you’re dating another actor it’s not very practical.” She dips her spoon in her dessert again. “So that Brittany chick was just meant to be a hookup then?”

I’m sure Brittany would’ve been good with the hookup part, but I don’t mention that to Ruby. “I went out with her as a favor.”

She grimaces. “Wow, that’s some favor.”

“She’s not that bad.” I’m not sure why I’m defending Brittany, other than it seems to irritate Ruby.

“She called me a slut!”

“Well, you were kissing me, so . . .” I have to bite back the smile at her incredulity.

She points her spoon at me, her annoyance clear. “You kissed me.”

I shift an arm behind my head. “You didn’t put up much of a fight.”

Her mouth drops open and snaps shut just as quickly. It’s the same reaction I got out of her the other day when I brought the same thing up at the restaurant.

Her eyes narrow into slits. I bet she’s a real firecracker when she’s angry. I sort of want to push her buttons just to see what happens when she goes off. I bet angry fucking with her would be incredible. I wonder if she’s a hair puller, or a biter, or a scratcher. Wow. That got dirty fast.

She narrows her eyes. “We are not talking about this.”

“About you kissing me back? I wasn’t going to bring it up, but now that we’re on the subject—”

“Consider it un-brought-up.” Her cheeks flush.

I can’t help myself. I keep pushing. “No way. You as much as admitted that you kissed me back, right there. You opened the door. I’m walking through it. Why would you kiss a complete stranger?”

“I said I wasn’t talking about this.” The pink in her cheeks rises to the tips of her ears.

This is way too much fun. She’s got one hell of an angry glare going on. “I’m leaving you in my house for more than a month, alone. I need to be certain you have sound judgment.”

“I’ll have you know my judgment is usually very sound. However, when an incredibly attractive man surprises me with his tongue in my mouth, the most logical response is to kiss back.”

“You think I’m incredibly attractive?”

She rolls her eyes. “Of course that’s the part you choose to focus on. You see yourself in the mirror every day. You can’t tell me you don’t know you’re nice to look at. I’m just stating a fact.”

My ego inflates a little at this. I know I’m not unattractive, but my nose has been broken a couple of times, and there’s a bump I can’t ever get rid of without plastic surgery. I’ve had knee surgery and I’m not great under anesthetic, so I’d prefer to avoid that scenario. I also have a few small facial scars from playing rugby all those years, which, in the environment I grew up in, takes me down a few points on the desirability scale. Not that I give a fuck. It’s my mother who seems to be worried about it, as she does about every line and gray hair. It’s a blessing I don’t have any sisters.

            I see. So you’re telling me if any incredibly attractive man did what I did, you’d respond the exact same way.”

“Now you’re generalizing. It’s circumstantial.”

“What do you mean by circumstantial?”

“Well, I guess I assumed you had to be a guest at the engagement party.”

“So that made it okay to kiss a stranger? Because we were attending the same event?”

She pauses with her spoon at her lips. “That’s not what I said.”

“It sounds like that’s what you’re implying.” That spoons slips into her mouth and she licks it clean before she responds. The entire time I’m thinking increasingly dirty thoughts about that tongue of hers.

She flounders a little. “It’s not like I was at some seedy bar with seedy douches. It was an engagement party.”

“So that makes me better somehow?”

“Are you always this antagonistic?” She throws up her hands. “You kissed me. You smelled good and you’re good with your tongue so I went with it. Stop judging me.”

“I’m not judging, I’m just asking. So on top of being incredibly attractive and smelling good I’m also an excellent kisser.”

“I never said excellent, you added your own adjective. And if you keep talking about how attractive you are you’ll go from a ten to a nine pretty fast.”

 


ShackingUp.jpg  Ruby Scott is months behind on rent and can’t seem to land a steady job. She has one chance to turn things around with a big audition. But instead of getting her big break, she gets sick as a dog and completely bombs it in the most humiliating fashion. All thanks to a mysterious, gorgeous guy who kissed—and then coughed on—her at a party the night before.

Luckily, her best friend might have found the perfect opportunity; a job staying at the lavish penthouse apartment of hotel magnate Bancroft Mills while he’s out of town, taking care of his exotic pets. But when the newly-evicted Ruby arrives to meet her new employer, it turns out Bane is the same guy who got her sick.

Seeing his role in Ruby’s dilemma, Bane offers her a permanent job as his live-in pet sitter until she can get back on her feet. Filled with hilariously awkward encounters and enough sexual tension to heat a New York City block, Shacking Up, from NYT and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting, is sure to keep you laughing and swooning all night long.

ADD IT TO YOUR GOODREADS

PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY NOW

AMAZON |  B&N |  iBOOKS | KOBO |  GOOGLEPLAY |  AUDIBLE


CONNECT WITH HELENA

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of PUCKED, Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy.

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