Sunday, May 31, 2015

Series Spotlight : Secrets & Surrender by L.G. Castillo

Secrets & Surrender
Part One
by L.G. Castillo

April 2nd, 2015

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eARC received in exchange of honest review


Keeping my family's secret meant living in the shadows and guarding my heart. Then Nic Marcelli came into my life with a force I couldn't resist. Devastatingly handsome and way too cocky, he was from a world different from mine – a world of designer clothes, brunches, and fancy cars, a world I didn't understand, a world that would never accept me. 

I fought him and my desire, but in a moment of weakness, I caved. I thought he'd be nothing more than a fling, someone to have fun with until graduation. Then we'd go our separate ways. I was wrong. If I had known then the sacrifices he'd make to stay by my side, I never would’ve surrendered to his love.

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Hoop Earrings!! There it is!! Shalaka Shaka Laka Shaka!

Oh my goodness this was such a fun read!! LOL! Mandi is absolutely to DIE for! Okay…Spoiler alert! Ha ha not really, BUT! Something awful happens in the first chapter and it literally had me thinking “well turds! Should I even keep reading?” Then I decided yes Ria this is L.G. Castillo keep on going let’s see where this goes. The second chapter starts 2 years prior and it took me a tiny bit to get adjusted to what was happening. You know with what happened in chapter one and all. Mandi stole the show her bubbly deeply loving and loyal personality had me from jump. 

This story is told in two POV’s Mandi(the girl I luv) & Nic(Dominic) Mandi’s love interest. From the moment these two met I could not put the book down! In the first installment we follow Mandi & Nic through high school and the effort that Nic put into grabbing Mandi’s attention. The charisma and chemistry was all there. Mandi loves her family deeply and resists Nic for as long as she can because they come from two different worlds. Nic see’s Mandi for the wonderful vibrant loving person she is and he vows to make her his. After some serious plotting and persuading Mandi give Nic her heart. Watching the way these two characters connected was spectacular. I will definitely be reading the next books in this series and I highly recommend this series. 

Though this book wasn’t very long it still had every important component of a great escape. Mandi’s family harbors a secret that haunts her but it is not revealed as of yet. I can’t imagine what it could be. Castillo does a wonderful job of immersing the reader into this wonderful story. I am rooting for Mandi and Nic to make things work against the odds. 

My Rating
4.5 Ranch, Pinto, Birthday, Football, Math Drive In, Brunch, Loving Family, Calus Parents, Prom, College, Together, Moonlit Serenade, Professions of unwavering and undying love filled stars!

Mikki's Review:

I first discovered L.G. Castillo when I read her amazing NA paranormal series. She hooked me from the first chapter! I was excited to find out that she wrote two new NA series.  It took me no time to fall in love with Manuela (Mandi) and Domenic (Nic). Mandi is the kind of heroine I love to cheer for! She has an amazing personality and she's a loyal and incredible friend. The author did a fantastic job with Nic as well. He was irresistibly addictive! He was the perfect person for Mandi. 

Let me start off by saying that I had to read not once, but twice the first chapter!!! I thought that by mistake I started another installment instead of the first one. I had to message my co-blogger to get some  much needed support. My heart was beating so fast!! She told me to keep on reading and that everything would make sense. I read until I could not keep my eyes open anymore!!! Mandi and Nic's story is beautiful, but heartbreaking as well. 

In this first book we follow Mandi and Nic in high school. Nic is the new boy in town and he is the centre of attention wherever he goes. When Mandi first sees him, her world his turned upside down! She can't explain the attraction she has towards him. Mandi plays hard to get at first, but soon enough Nic's irresistible charm sweeps her off her feet! Their relationship grows every single day, but the people that want them apart are starting to take matters into their own hands. You won't be surprised if I tell you that the first installment ends with a major cliffhanger! I was so happy that I had the other two books waiting for me on my reading device!! I could not wait to see what would happen next!!!

L.G. Castillo did a fantastic job at making Mandi and Nic's beautiful love story come alive. Her writing style is captivating and her characters are all fascinating! It was easy to relate to both Mandi and Nic. I'm scared to see what is next for this couple. So many people are against their relationship that it scares me to think about what they would do to separate them. I'm crossing my fingers that I will not have a broken heart in the next book!


I give Secrets & Surrender, Part one, by L.G. Castillo, 4.5 romantic, first love, sweet stars!

Secrets & Surrender
Part Two
by L.G. Castillo

April 24th, 2015

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eARC received in exchange of honest review


There are moments in your life that you’ll never forget. Meeting Nic Marcelli was one of those moments. With Nic by my side, we'd built a comfortable life filled with college classes, studying, and midnight pizza runs. My new life as a college student was perfect with everyone I loved exactly where I wanted them to be. Then I met Julian, and it all fell apart. 

In a whirlwind, he blew into my life with his solid, muscled arms and unforgettable Aztec tattoos, shattering everything I thought I already knew about myself. I was trapped in a deluge of emotions that should've been impossible for me to feel for anyone but Nic. Confused and terrified, I wondered if I could ever put the pieces of my life back together again, and if I did, would Nic still be a part of it.

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The Lambada is a Sexy Dance

What the WHAT?!! The second installment in this series just whipped by me! Talk about devouring a book and I can tell you about Secrets & Surrender 2. Mandi and Nic move to attend college. Mandi has let Nic into her heart but she is holding back. Her family’s secret looming over her has made her guard her heart. Nic’s past is now very much a part of his and Mandi’s present. Kristie who still has feeling for Nic has become close to Mandi and these two are polar opposites but still fun! Enter the super sexy, super perfect for Mandi Julian. Life throws these two together and something about him stirs feelings from Mandi she doesn’t want to feel. Trusting Nic is a huge leap but he has Mandi’s heart and if she doesn’t surrender she will lose him. 

Mandi is in college with Nic, doing things she’s only ever dreamed of doing. Promising to make things work Mandi throws herself into school and her new job. While a production to help the local high school seems innocent enough, Mandi is secretly loosing her mind. Being from two different worlds has always gotten in the way of Mandi and Nic but now it is leaking into their love. If your not into love triangles beware cause its a pretty heavy topic in this installment. Mandi is here in all her awesomeness kicking butt and taking numbers! She shines once again. 

Another super quick read but so spot on! Castillo captures the emotion and complexity of these characters thoroughly. Getting lost in this series has been an absolute delight. Halfway through this read I had my suspicions, know that by the end the family secret is revealed. The most unbelievable thing happens when Nic betrays Mandi and Julian is there to rescue her! Eeeep talk about a cliff hanger?! Yikes I can’t wait to pick up the next this series has been wonderful I highly recommend it. 

My Rating

4.5 Dorm, Job, Tutoring, Classes, Guitar, Lambada, Aztec Princess, Brother, Tamales, Performance, Frat Party, White Polo, Porsche, Tossing Cookies, Crow Bar, Picnic, Mother, Ultimatum, Flowers, Rain Storm, Wedding, Motorcycle, Betrayal that permeates and penetrates the soul, Heart broken love filled stars!

Mikki's Review:

Oh, mama!

I knew that this second book in the Secret & Surrender series was going to be intense, but it totally took me by surprise! These books are not very long so please keep in mind that this review might contain some spoilers. Trouble is on the way for our beloved couple ... Big trouble!!!!

Mandi and Nic are finally in college and loving it! Until a somebody from Nic's past comes knocking on the door and a new hero comes in to complicate things in Mandi and Nic's relationship. Mandi and Nic have had many ups and downs at the beginning of their relationship, but with Kristie and Julian in the picture things are about to get even more complicated! Their relationship will be tested in the most heartbreaking way. I have to admit that I was not sure how I was going to handle the whole love triangle part. I wanted Mandi and Nic to find their HEA. Kristie and Julian were a menace to that HEA. Kristie totally surprised me. I did not expect to like her so much! She's an interesting character to follow. As for Julian, I'm still trying to figure him out. I'm not #TeamJulian yet. I think it's going to take me some time to get used to his character and his role in this story.

I got all the feels while reading this second part to Mandi and Nic's journey! OMG!!! My heart is in a million pieces right now!!! Mandi revealed her family secret to Nic. He was supportive and she finally let go of her fear of showing him how she really felt about him. I was still waiting for the revelation of what that secrets was when BAMMMMMM!!!! It hit me in the face and broke my heart! OMG!!! The third book is going to be EPIC!!! I can feel it!!!


I give Secrets & Surrender, Part two, by L.G. Castillo 4.5 intense, passionate, heartbreaking, page-turning stars!

Secrets & Surrender
Part Three
by L.G. Castillo

May 15th, 2015

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eARC received in exchange of honest review


Nic's love meant everything to me, but his betrayal crushed my soul. In a brief moment of doubt, I left his side and stood alone, drowning in a sea of Juan's anger, Julian's jealousy, and the loneliness of a broken heart. 

Even though Nic regretted what had happened with my mother and vowed to do everything he could to make things right, I couldn't shake the fear that our love wouldn't survive. The entire world seemed to be against us, and I didn't know if I could continue to fight for him. 

A trembling hand, a single bullet, a final breath, and the decision to fight for Nic was made for me.

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OH MY GOODNESS!!! Remember that awful thing I mentioned that happened in the first book? Well, it comes back in full technicolor glory and my heart fell to my toes. In the first installment we meet Nic Mandi and follow them through high school. In the second they are off to college and Mandi’s love is tested. In the third Nic makes the most selfless sacrifice and proves to everyone how pure and strong his love is. 

Trust me when I say these serials are wonderful reads! The characters are full of life and their emotions become the readers emotions. These books deal with prejudice and the power of love to overcome the negativity of this world. I cheered and cried for Nic and Mandi. These two wonderful characters touched my heart. I’m so happy with the way things ended there was no doubt! 

I zipped through this read in a blink of an eye and you will too. There are a lot of shocking moments. Revenge and restitution but through everything our main characters stayed true to themselves. I don’t want to touch on too much of the story because I want to keep my review spoiler free. Just know that I’m more than happy with the way things ended and I highly recommend this series. Bravo Castillo!

My Rating

4.5  Tormented, Love, Triumphant Union, Endless and Pure, Promises of Eternity, Understanding, Open Hearted Forgiveness, The Truest of Love Filled Stars!! 

Mikki's Review:


I honesty thought that my heart was not going to survive this last instalment in the Secrets & Surrender series!!!! I was still picking up the pieces of my broken heart (with my virtual dust pan) when I decided to start reading the last book of Mandi and Nic's intense and passionate love story. You will not be disappointed in this one! Secrets are revealed and relationship are tested, but love is strong and Nic will do whatever it takes to have Mandi by his side!

I have to admit that Nic stole the show in this last installment. I have been a big fan of Mandi, but Nic always came close second. Well, he totally has my heart in this book! He is incredible!!!! The way he loves Mandi is breathtaking! Pure and honest love. A love so strong and beautiful that will leave your heart beating fast and bursting with happiness! Nic Marcelli's love is the forever kind. No doubt about it!  I will say no more because I want the reader to feel every single  emotion that I felt while reading this book! It's pretty  freakin' awesome!! 

After the explosive and heartbreaking ending of part two, I did not think that my heart could handle any more complications for these two incredible characters. Part three was even more intense than part two!!! OMG!!! I had no more freakin' nails left!!! L.G. Castillo wrote a beautiful story that I will never forget! A beautiful story about true love.  *Swoon* The way the story ended totally makes my heart happy!!!


I give Secrets & Surrender, Part three, by L.G. Castillo 4.5 emotional, captivating, powerful stars!


About the author:

Known for her high-intensity New Adult Romance novels, native Texan and psychologist, L.G. Castillo writes books that explore the tumultuous and psychological journey of self-discovery and falling in love. Her stories feature dramatic, life-changing events interspersed with a good dose of humor, feisty heroines, and the swoon-worthy men who love them. 

When she's not writing, L.G. is binging on Netflix or adding up frequent flyer miles for her next vacation. She's been married to her own swoon-worthy hero for over two decades.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Blog Tour: Rescuing the Bad Boy (Second Chance #2) by Jessica Lemmon

Rescuing The Bad Boy
Second Chance #2

Jessica Lemmon

May 26, 2015

Forever Romance

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eARC from publisher for a honest review

Book Summary:


For Donovan Pate, the lake town of Evergreen Cove is a minefield of tough memories—including the day he had to let go of Sofie Martin. Years later, he still can’t forget the taste of her lips and the feel of her killer curves. He knows he’s too damaged, that he should stay away for her own good. But what the head says and the heart wants are two very different things… 

Seven years ago, Donovan broke Sofie’s heart. Now her career depends on playing nice in order to pull off the charity fundraiser of the decade. She vows to keep things professional…yet working by his side every day doesn’t make it easy to fight temptation, and it isn’t long before she finds herself falling for this bad boy all over again. But loving Donovan means helping him face his past–so they can fight for a future together. 

Second Chance Series:
My Review on Bringing Home the Bad Boy Here 

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My Thoughts:

I was really happy and excited to return to Evergreen Cove, a small town in Ohio, where close friendships have evolved, and a sense of community exists.  Rescuing the Bad Boy is the sequel in the Second Chance Series.  I am a hopeless romantic at heart, and believe in second chances at love, so this series has been perfect for the optimist in me.

In Rescuing the Bad Boy, we get Donovan Pate and Sofie Martin's love story told from their dual perspectives.  When Sofie was twenty one, she lost her virginity to Donavan, and he broke her heart when he treated her poorly, and left town.  Seven years later, Donavan leaves his current home in New York to return to Evergreen Cove.  His grandmother passed, and left him her mansion.  He has plans of settling the estate promptly, and returning home.

However, Donavan's plans are thwarted when he learns that his grandmother signed a contract to host a fundraising dinner at the mansion for "Open Arms," a community service that helps abused children.  Sofie is in charge of organizing the event.  Therefore, with Donavan stuck in Evergreen Cove for three months, he plans to stay away from Sofie, and she him.  Yet, the allure and chemistry between them makes it impossible to stay away.  How will things end when the three months are up.  Will Sofie be left with a broken heart again?

While I enjoyed, Bringing Home the Bad Boy, I absolutely adored, Rescuing the Bad Boy.  My heart broke for Donavan's character.  He was a man with so many scars, that resulted in him not really living a full and happy life. He had never known love, caring, and compassion, until he meet Sofie.  He felt unworthy and damaged.  My heart cried for him, and made me think of how children are so vulnerable, and the abuse and scars forced upon them in childhood, have horrible lasting effects.  I loved Sofie's character.  She taught Donavan what love and genuine affection felt like.  Sofie was patient, fun loving, and I loved the teasing and flirty dynamic between her and Donavan.

Secondary characters from the first book in the series have returned, and what a reunion!  We get more Charlie and Evan, Glo, and Asher, as well as Colton, and Faith.  I can't wait to continue this series.  The love affairs, close friendships, and "Second Chance" theme all make for a wonderful reading experience.

My Rating:

I give, Rescuing the Bad Boy, by Jessica Lemmon, 4 Sexy Flirting, Exciting Bad Boy Kisses, Romantic Love Filled Stars!

Character Casting by the Author:

Book Teasers:

Her soft touch landed on Donovan’s arm, and the anger shuddering inside him shifted into an ache. She stepped closer, the warmth between them radiating enough heat to set him on fire. But like the fireplaces he built, he could handle it. He could handle the heat from her, not because he was impervious, but because he was strong enough to soak her in and not burn to ash. 
     She turned his arm where paint was drying. She swiped at it with her sleeve. “I made a mess.” 
     He’d forgotten about the paint. “Don’t… I can… There is a shower in the…” He lost his train of thought when she turned those emerald green eyes up to him. He watched her delicate throat work as she swallowed. His eyes traveled up her neck and landed on her mouth. Needing her mouth, he lowered his face, watched her eyes grow dark and wide, watched her lift her chin to meet him. 
     Heat. He wanted more. If only to test his own strength.   
     He moved his lips gently against hers, but resisted holding her to him. She held onto him though, grasping his forearms with both hands, her fingers wrapped around his elbows. Pressing her body against his, pressing her tits against his ribs. 
     Hell, sounded like an invitation to him. Deepening their connection, he thrust his tongue into her mouth, reached around, and grabbed her ass with both palms. When he squeezed, she sucked in a breath. 
     “Told you,” he rumbled. 
     “Told me?” 
     “Not a complaint, Scampi.” He squeezed again. “Perfect.” 
     A choked laugh left her throat. “Big.” 
     Still moving his hands over her backside, he said, “First thing I noticed about you at the Wharf.” He’d been plating up a chicken scaloppini when the manager walked in to show around a few new servers. Two he couldn’t remember, and Sofie. Bent over the plate, he’d peeked between the metal shelves framing that perfect ass . He’d stood to get a better look, and she’d pegged him with those moss-greens. 
     “Second thing I noticed was your eyes.” 
     Her lips parted slightly. “And the third thing?” 
     He kissed her. She tasted incredible. “The first time you talked to me.” 
     She rolled her eyes. “And what did I say?” 
     She didn’t think he remembered. She was wrong. “‘Can I get a side of cock?’” 
     Laughing, she shook her head. 
     He smiled back at her, unable to help himself. “Then you cleared your throat and said, ‘cocktail sauce’.” 
     Shaking her head, she said, “Worst abbreviation ever.” 
     “Kitchen guys are immature.” 
     She blinked up at him, studying him, like she was trying to piece him together. He didn't want her to. Once she pieced him together and had the whole picture, she wouldn’t like what she saw. 
     He kissed her again, keeping his hands on her body. 
     “Are you testing my boundaries?” she asked, her tone teasing. He recognized that comment from the night he rescued her from Torsett. 
     “Mine,” he corrected. 
     Sofie bit her lip. “I don’t date much.” 
     “Me either.” At all, actually. 
     She shook her head, more in thought than in argument. “I don’t think I have any boundaries with you.”  
     He was beginning to think he had none with her, either.

About Jessica Lemmon:

A former job-hopper, Jessica Lemmon resides in Ohio with her husband and rescue dog. She holds a degree in graphic design currently gathering dust in an impressive frame. When she's not writing super-sexy heroes, she can be found cooking, drawing, drinking coffee (okay, wine), and eating potato chips. She firmly believes God gifts us with talents for a purpose, and with His help, you can create the life you want.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Book Review: The Moment We Began (Fairhope #2) by Sarra Cannon

The Moment We Began 

(Fairhope #2) 

Sarra Cannon 
Pub September 15th 2013 
by Dead River Books 
ARC for Review 

The moment they both believe all hope is lost is the moment something real finally begins.

I have loved Mason Trent for years, but I've only been sleeping with him for one.

None of my friends know about our secret passion. He's in my bed one night and in the arms of someone else the next. And it's tearing me apart.

I've done everything I can think of to make him mine, but the more I cling to him, the harder he pushes me away. I'm spiraling out of control, not sure how much more of this I can take. A girl can only bend so far until she breaks. And when I do, I break completely. I'm talking about one night of bad decisions, all leading to a my-world-will-never-be-the-same kind of moment. A moment where I need Mason more than ever. True to form, though, he's running.

But I intend to go with him this time. I'm willing to leave my money, my family, my friends behind for this one last chance to see if he could ever really love me the way I deserve to be loved. I'm willing to sacrifice forever if it means one real moment with him.

Each book in the Fairhope series can stand-alone, but you'll see updates on your favorite characters throughout each book, so read them in order to get the most out of the series!

The Moment We Began

When I first started reading this book I was like *face palm* what the heck is Pen thinking?! Man these characters were crazy! Somewhere along the way I started caring for Pen and wanting her happiness. This is a friends to lovers story that I found really entertaining. Although I didn’t agree with Pen and I wanted to murder Mason I’m glad I gave it a shot. This is book 2 of the Fairhope series where the main focus is Penny and Mason. All of the characters that were in the first come back in the second and that is always nice. It’s one of the reasons I enjoy contemporary series that can be read as stand alone. Revisiting with past characters and getting glimpses of their current life situations and happiness is always a plus!

ired, Pen has loved the same boy since she can remember but the feeling is not reciprocated.
umiliation, for the past year Penny has been in a one way romantic relationship. The fact that Mason parades girls in front of her is devastating.
ndless, another party another night to get completely blitzed. Penny has not been making very smart decisions lately but she is too twisted up to care.

eaningless, all of the time Penny has spent with Mason has felt so wonderful but at the end of each encounter he manages to break her heart.
ptimistic, each time Penny gives in she hopes for something to change. Each time Mason crushes her. This time he is leaving and Penny has a secret that will change everyone’s life, she refuses to let him go without a fight.
anipulating, being smart charming and cunning are things both Mason and Penny excel at together away from everyone’s expectations these two will discover just how pure their love can be.
scape, though both Mason and Penny have had privileged lives it’s as though they have never fully lived. Mason has a lot to atone for but with Fairhope behind them he will try.
aïve, not knowing what to expect Penny shelters her secret but her heart has always belonged to the same boy. Life is unimaginable without him.
ruth, there are so many missed opportunities with Pen and Mason he is tired of missing out. He will brave this new way of life if it means keeping Pen forever.

ishing, Penny took a great risk coming with Mason but she can feel the switch in him and hope has blossomed where she thought none could exist.
ntrust, learning about each other has been a wonderful experience. Knowing that Mason loves Pen brings her more joy than she could ever imagine.

roken, soon the truths must come out and though they planned on doing it soon fate has stepped in the way. The result is another wave of heart break and betrayal.
legance, being back home with new eyes shows Penny just how wrong everyone is. So much has happened Pen can no longer stand and comes dangerously close to losing everything.
uttural, there is a need so deep for Pen that Mason cannot believe he ever let Pen walk away. Not anymore, fists up and shoulders out Mason will fight for what is his.
tone, so much has changed in such a short period of time. Penny will show her family what is truly important and they will learn to let her live.
urturing, Pen and Mason can’t wait for the next chapter in their lives. Both have grown so much. Living humbly these two do what they can for their community in honor of those they love.

What a wonderful read this turned out to be. I am so glad I kept going Mason and Pen had some serious growing to do and they sure did. Both of these characters showed glimpses of their potential in the beginning i have to admit that I doubted their progress but they found out what life is really about. The most important thing is they found it together. The love and the passion was all their. No one was without fault but by the end the love was so powerful forgiveness was the only choice. Bravo Cannon another success, I just love this authors writing so much!! I absolutely recommend this series for those contemporary fans out there it is sure to move ya.

My Rating 
4.0 Bikini, Yacht Party, Mimosa, Brunch, Blind Date, Poser, Usual Drag, Bar, Best Pals, Shots, Sucking Face, Key Debacle, Accident, Test, Trip, Lake, Slut, Rain, Dottie, Pier, Texas, Song, Promise, Jet, Announcement, Hospital, Blood, Heartbeat, Trust Fund, Charity, Love, Acceptance and fortifying love filled stars!!

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About the Author 

An Amazon Top 100 Best Selling Author!  

Sarra Cannon writes contemporary and paranormal fiction with both teen and college age characters. Her novels often stem from her own experiences growing up in the small town of Hawkinsville, Georgia, where she learned that being popular always comes at a price and relationships are rarely as simple as they seem. Her bestselling Young Adult paranormal series, Peachville High Demons, has sold over 140,000 copies and been featured on Amazon's Top 100 eBooks for Children & Teens. The first book in the series, Beautiful Demons, will be adapted into a graphic novel by Sea Lion Books later this year, and a spin-off series will begin in 2014. She is a devoted (obsessed) fan of Hello Kitty and has an extensive collection that decorates her desk as she writes. She currently lives in North Carolina with her amazingly supportive husband and her adorable son.

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