Preview: Wedding From Hell by J.R. Ward

GUYS!!! Did you see that J.R. Ward has surprised us with a FREE three part prequel to her new book Consumed, which comes out in October? Super excited to dive into these as we wait for Consumed to release. Part one is available now. Parts two and three will be coming in August. Scroll down for links and an excerpt.

About the Book:
It’s a classic recipe for disaster: Take one bridesmaid who thinks pink is the root of all evil, mix with a best man who’s hotter than a four-alarm fire, add in their explosive sexual attraction, a nightmare bridezilla, two cat fights, and an emergency call, and you have the wedding from hell.

Experience the sizzling start of Anne and Danny’s intense relationship. Is this the start of something good…or just an erotic one-night stand that rocks their world, but must never be repeated?

Grab Part 1 https://amzn.to/2LE5e4e
Preorder Part 2 https://amzn.to/2A8B8By
Preorder Part 3 https://amzn.to/2A8Ctby

Excerpt:

Thursday, October 29
T minus 48 hours ’til blastoff
College Row, New Brunswick, Massachusetts

“Because women are not frickin’ groomsmen! That’s why she can’t be in the goddamn wedding!”

As Anne Ashburn walked in the back door of the shotgun apartment, that happy little explosion was not only what she’d expected all along, it also offered her the out she’d been praying for. And it was probably the one and only time she was ever going to agree with the bride.

Not about the role of females in bridal parties, but that Anne wasn’t going to be in the “goddamn wedding.”

Everyone standing in the kitchen turned and looked at her: Deandra Cox, the impending wearer of the white dress; Robert “Moose” Miller, her exhausted fiancé and Anne’s fellow crew member down at the 499 fi rehouse; and . . . Dannyboy Maguire.

Who was the only one she really noticed and, for that reason, the person she refused to look at.

Too bad Danny always made an impression. Like most firefighters, he was in great physical shape, his big body thickly muscled and ready to snap into motion in an instant. With his heavy arms linked over that chest and his long legs crossed at the boots, he was leaning back against the chipped countertop, his too-blue stare missing nothing. He was fresh from a shower, his glossy black hair wet, and Anne tried not to picture him naked under the spray, his tattooed torso arching as he rinsed the shampoo out of his—

She put her hands up to stop herself as much as the argument. “Look, I don’t want to cause any problems. I’m happy to step aside—”

“And now I have one too many bridesmaids.” The bride-to-be refocused on her intended. “My count is wrong. You wait until two days before the wedding to tell me this when you know I’m not going to like it, and now my count is off!”

As the groom focused on the linoleum floor, it was impossible not to picture a wax version of the couple on a multi-tiered cake: Deandra in skinny jeans and that tight cashmere sweater, her dark hair streaked blond, her body cocked forward like she was going to throat-punch the man she was going to marry; Moose in his New Brunswick Fire Department T-shirt, all broad-shouldered and bearded around the face, easing back like someone with the flu was about to sneeze in his face.

Ah, true love.

“I didn’t think it was a big deal,” Moose muttered. “Anne’s a member of the four-nine-nine crew, and everyone else is with me.”

“She’s a girl.” Deandra pointed at Anne. “It throws off everything.”

“I really don’t want to cause any problems.” Anne put her hands up again. “So I’ll just be in the congregation. It’s perfectly fine—”

Deandra’s glare swung Anne’s way. “The count is still wrong. And my friends have already paid for their dresses. They were a hundred and twenty dollars apiece.”

And that’s my cue to go, Anne thought. Moose may have volunteered for this, but no one else had or needed to—

“I think women can be whatever they want.”

As Danny spoke up, everyone looked at him—including Anne, who suddenly felt shades of what Deandra was throwing out.

Don’t you dare, she mouthed at him behind the bride’s back.

Danny just shrugged like he’d thrown on a pantsuit and was channeling Oprah, Michelle Obama, and Hillary Clinton all at once. “I mean, Deandra, you’re above all that sexism, aren’t you? No one’s going to tell you what’s right and wrong for your own wedding. You’re more secure than that.”

I am going to kill you, Anne vowed. “I think Deandra wants things done properly for her only wedding.”

Danny frowned in pseudo-confusion. “So you’re saying it’s okay to have a double standard for men and women? That’s a shocker given how you are at the station. I thought you believed in equality.”

“I do,” Anne snapped. “But this isn’t about equality.”

“You sure? I don’t know how you can support traditional gender roles when it comes to a wedding ceremony at the same time you defend the right for women to be firefighters, cops, and on the front lines in the military.”

“Spare me someone who’s never been in a dress having an opinion about women’s issues, okay?”

“I’m just pointing out that you don’t want women out of dresses.”

“It’s her wedding.” Anne jabbed a finger at Deandra. “She’s the bride. She gets to say what’s right and wrong for her, and she does not need some man telling her what to do.”

“Even if I’m defending the rights of women?”

“Until you grow a set of ovaries, you can shut the hell up about our rights!”

As Anne’s voice ricocheted around the kitchen, she realized that she’d marched right up to Danny—and that Deandra and Moose were watching the two of them in total stillness.

She cleared her throat and took a step back. “Anyway, Deandra’s made up her mind. And I support her decision.”

Deandra’s eyes narrowed on Danny, and something about the way the woman looked at him didn’t seem right.

“Actually,” the bride said, “maybe she should be in the wedding party.”

Anne prayed her expression stayed neutral. “Don’t compromise your vision on my account.”

“I won’t.” The woman stared at Danny. “Fine. Let’s put her in a tuxedo like the rest of the men. She can walk my sister down the aisle, just like a man should. Her shoulders are too big for a gown, anyway, and that way my count stays the way it should.”

Anne rolled her eyes. Let’s hear it for girl power.

“So it’s settled,” Deandra said with a tight smile. “You need a tux. Unless you already own one.”

For a moment, Anne waited for somebody to argue with the woman. Like Moose. But he was clearly done falling on swords over the wedding details, and Danny had just gotten what he wanted so he wasn’t going to say a damn thing.

And the truth was, after how many years of fighting fires with these men, they were her brothers in all but blood. Even though she thought Moose had lost his ever-loving mind marrying this beautiful but sour woman after knowing her for a matter of months, Anne was still going to stand up for the guy if he wanted her to—and he did. He’d asked her down at the stationhouse specifically.

“Where did you guys rent your suits?” Anne said to him.

“Tuxedoes,” Deandra corrected.

The groom blinked like he’d forgotten how to speak English. Then again, he’d been doing that a lot at the firehouse lately. “You’re actually going to wear one?”

“What the hell do I care?”

“Yes, she is wearing one,” Deandra cut in.

Danny spoke up. “I’ll go with you. I know where the place is.”

About the Author:
J.R. Ward is the author of more than thirty novels, including those in her #1 New York Times bestselling Black Dagger Brotherhood series. There are more than fifteen million copies of her novels in print worldwide, and they have been published in twenty-six different countries around the world. She lives in the South with her family.

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Review: To the Moon and Back by Karen Kingsbury


There’s just something about books, that are based around real life tragedies, that suck me in. I read, and very much enjoyed, Karen’s 9/11 series. Being a wife of a public service employee, I find myself sucked into these types of stories very easily. When I saw that this was about the Oklahoma bombing, I knew the same thing would happen. And I was so right.

It’s been a while since a book pulled all these emotions from me. My eyes were wet more than they were dry. The feelings of loss and despair were so overwhelming, I was chocking on it. I know there is healing and comfort through faith, but while you’re in the midst of it, it’s sometimes hard to feel it.

There are two different stories happening here. One is about Amy. Not having read the first two Baxter books, I am unsure if her story played out in those, but in this book she is living with an aunt and uncle, since her parents and sisters were killed in a car accident. She may be 12 but she has this inner strength that makes me want to reach in and hug. She wants to get a sapling from the Survivor Tree, in honor of her being a survivor, and that basically sets the stage for the main story about Brady and Jenna.

Brady and Jenna were both children when their parents were killed in the bombing. Brady was in the building with his mom at the time, and he seems to be having a harder issue with letting God give him comfort. Jenna met Brady at the memorial when they were both 17. They had a connection of grief, but they never saw each other again.

But it only takes a moment to change the course of your life.

This book is about healing and finding hope, when yours is lost. It’s about holding on to those left behind. And it’s about having faith in someone stronger than yourself. Very powerful.

~Melpomene

Buy To the Moon and Backhttps://amzn.to/2HSXruu

Review: I Found You by Lisa Jewell

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I admit, mysteries and thrillers are probably my genre du jour.  And the more twisty and turny, the better.  This one was definitely that!

When Alice comes across a strange man on the beach, she immediately senses he needs help.  He has no memory, nothing to indicate where he came from.  So of course she takes him in until he can figure out just who he is.  And predictably, she falls for him along the way.

Meanwhile, young newlywed Lily is in a panic because her husband has disappeared without a trace.  He just went to work one day and never came home.  While trying to find him, she discovers he wasn’t who she thought he was.   In fact, the man she married doesn’t even exist.

Step back in time, now, to a tragic event that happened on the very same beach where Alice came across her handsome stranger.  Could these events possibly related?  And could Lily’s missing husband be connected?  But of course!   It wouldn’t be a thriller otherwise.

I love Lisa Jewell’s stories.  They rely heavily on characters and family connections while at the same time portraying them authentically.  Her latest is no different.  Grab it!

~Thalia

Buy It Now:  I Found You

Review: The Perfect Stranger by Megan Miranda

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A friend…a very good one.  Someone who knows you better than you know yourself.  Someone you can turn to in your darkest hour, to help you pick up the pieces.  What can be better?  Leah considers herself lucky to have such a person in Emmy.  She’s been there for her through it all, even after all the time they were out of touch.

And now, Emmy is willing to give up everything and start over for Leah.  Everything begins to unravel, however, when a local girl turns up beaten and left for dead.  And then Emmy goes missing.  Exactly when did Leah see her last, anyway?  As Leah digs deeper and deeper, she realizes that maybe she didn’t really know Emmy that well after all.

This is the perfect follow-up to Miranda’s last novel, All the Missing Girls.  It has just the right mix of intrigue, mystery, whodunit-ness to keep you guessing.  And even if you put pieces of the story together before the halfway mark, as did I, the last 30% is sure to take you for a ride.  That alone is enough of a reason to grab this one!

~Thalia

Buy It Now:  The Perfect Stranger

Review: My Name is Leon by Kit de Waal

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I’ve been thinking for several days about how to review this book.  It’s not that it isn’t good, which it is.  It’s just one of those stories that is hard to describe, hard to recommend to people without giving away too much of the story.

Leon’s life has not been easy.  His mom is an addict, and his dad is in prison.  But still, he’s a good kid. He helps his mom out more than a child should, especially when it comes to taking care of his baby brother.  That’s not enough to keep them out of trouble, though. When his mom finally gives in to her demons, Leon and Jake find themselves taken away and placed into a foster home.

As foster homes go, it’s a good one.  Maureen is kind and caring even at her advanced age.  Leon would probably be happy staying with her indefinitely.  There’s a little hitch in that plan, however.  Baby Jake is adopted, and Leon finds himself missing his brother terribly.  And when Maureen gets sick, things go from bad to worse.  He’s determined to find his brother, and he becomes angry when he can’t.

Set in the late 70s/early 80s, the story mirrors the racial unrest of the time.  As a black child with a white brother, Leon knows that things are different for him.  He just can’t understand why.  It’s a sad story, makes your heart hurt for a child to go through so much. Quick and easy to read, hard to forget.

~Thalia

Buy It Now:  My Name is Leon

Review: A Time of Torment (Charlie Parker, #14) by John Connolly

25930352 (1)Another great book by Connolly. Again, the ending of this book left me with chills and excitement of things yet to come. I really really REALLY wish Connolly would stop tormenting us with hints of the daughters and what they are capable of. Ha! I’m sick and anxious over them…and a wee bit scared as well!

For those that haven’t read Connolly before, you don’t HAVE to read his prior books to enjoy his works…however, there is so much story and history in the previous works. You won’t get lost having not read the previous books, but you won’t understand all the good stuff either. The layers and layers of history and characters that Connolly has interwoven. Charlie Parker really inspired those around him. Not all of those inspirations are positive. Some of them are borderline worshiping. And all of them are relevant. Imagine these novels are going to a wonderful city…yes, you can enjoy the city no matter what, but only a true local knows all the ins and outs that the city can offer. Those places not found in the tourist attractions. The very same is true for Charlie Parker. You learn much from Parker himself, but so much can be gained by the people that surround him in life.

Finally, I have to say, these characters are getting so rich and so many that I am thinking about starting a Charlie Parker notebook…So many characters that show up from novel to novel and so much of their stories growing and expanding…even though I’ve read of them in the past, I still feel as if I am missing some stuff because I can’t remember them all in all the details.

Of course that might just be an excuse my mind is using to go back and reread all the books!

Please, go read some Charlie Parker books…you won’t be disappointed…he’s really turning out to be a long time favourite of mine!

Until next time…
Urania

ARC provided by netgalley for an honest review

Buy it now A Time of Torment by John Connolly

Review: The Seven Sisters by Lucinda Riley

22609358I loved this novel. It was such a pleasant surprise. I’m not even sure what I loved the most about it…the layers of mysteries….the hints of things to come…the love story…the other love story…the past…the present…or the future…there are so many different things to love that it is hard to choose one…so I shall just say I loved them all..

Yes, this will be a long series…one that still has a long way to go…but regardless of the fact, each book proves to be a solid read all on their own merits…and I don’t believe it will prove to be complicated series that you’ll struggle to remember and catch up when you start a new book, trying to remember the last book…

Although the romance is very essence of this novel…it certainly isn’t a romance novel to me…I think the writing and the atmosphere and the places around the world are very bit a part of that essence as are any of the characters….I dare say that romance haters (is there such a thing) will love this series every bit as much as those that consider themselves romance lovers (which I would not classify myself as).

Yes, I have only read the first book…but it doesn’t matter…I have no doubt that they shall all be just as wonderful in their own way…that’s just how much I loved this novel…

Until next time…
Urania

Review copy provided by Edelweiss for an honest review

Buy your copy now The Seven Sisters by Lucinda Riley