Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Center Stage! by Caitlyn Duffy

Title: Center Stage!
Author: Caitlyn Duffy
Series: Center Stage! #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Young Adult
Release Date: September 14, 2015


Summary:
Allison Burch’s wildest dream is to become a famous singer. She can hardly believe her own good luck when she auditions for the reality television singing competition, Center Stage!, and is chosen as a contestant. She finally has a legitimate shot at fame, fortune, and a chance to go on tour as the opening act for her favorite boy band on their world tour.

However, Allison wasn’t counting on one of the celebrity coaches being Chase Atwood, the famous rock star father of her former best friend. Allison’s terrified that Chase is going to find out that she and his daughter have been in a fight for months, and it’ll ruin her shot at the grand prize. Making matters worse, Allison’s own coach, Country Western star Nelly Fulsom, intends to groom her into a Nashville superstar.

As Allison struggles to decide if she really wants to win on the show if it’s by resorting to dirty tricks and assuming the image that Nelly wants to create for her, she find herself falling hard for her biggest competition on the show: a brooding songwriter named Elliott Mercer. She’s not sure if Elliott’s interest in her is genuine, or if he’s just playing along with the producers’ strategy.

It’s up to Allison to decide: how much is she willing to lose in order to win?

Fans of Caitlyn Duffy’s The Rock Star’s Daughter will enjoy this tale about Taylor’s friend Allison and her journey to fame.

1. What is the biggest influence/interest that brought you to this genre?
I have always been interested in YA, primarily because I was such a heavy reader when I was a teenager. My favorite books growing up were Tiger Eyes, by Judy Blume, And You Give Me a Pain, Elaine, by Stella Pevsner, and this book called When the Phone Rang, by Harry Mazer, that I’m convinced inspired someone to create the show Party of 5. I think the books people read when their young adults reassure them that the weird stuff they’re going through is totally normal. My family moved around a lot when I was young, so I didn’t start high school with a strong group of friends. Year after year, I was always the new kids, so books connected me to the world beyond the walls of my schools where I didn’t always feel quite like I fit in. I supposed when I began writing, it was the hope that my books might also do the same for other kids.

2. When writing a book, what is your favorite part of the creative process(outline, plot, character names, editing, etc)?
My favorite part of the creative process probably is editing, surprisingly enough! Sometimes I’m so excited to jot down a plot that I’ll write as much as I can just to get it all out of my head while I’m inspired. However, most of what I write is total garbage in the first draft. My writing always gets a lot better with revisions, and as I go back through my chapters a third and fourth time, I tend to hear my characters’ voices much more strongly. That’s when I feel like they take clear shapes and when I tend to think of actions they should take that are truer to their motivations. When I was editing The Rock Star’s Daughter, the character of Taylor’s dad, Chase, began to have much more influence on the plot. Originally, he was just kind of a blank-slate father, but with time he turned into a complex figure with an ability to justify his own selfish, reckless behavior. In the final draft of the book, Chase’s actions ultimately put Taylor in a situation where she has to decide her own future, which didn’t exist in the first draft!

3. When reading a book, what genre do you find most interesting/intriguing?
I read a lot of YA, and lately I’ve been reading a fair amount of historical literary fiction, too. I really enjoy the books by a YA author named Jessica Khoury; they have a futurist/sci-fi edge and they deal with the topics of cloning and genetic manipulation. Last year I was on a bit of a WWII kick and read All the Light We Cannot See and re-read Suite Francaise, both of which I consider to be masterpieces.

4. If you could co-author with any author, past or present, who would you choose?
What an awesome question. I’d love to write something with Neil Gaiman, but primarily to observe his process. He’s a genius, and I’m afraid I’d be a little intimidated by him. Margaret Atwood, too—she’s absolutely amazing. I’d actually really enjoy co-authoring something with Isaac Marion, who wrote Warm Bodies. I think guys who write books for young adults are pretty cool, and Isaac Marion’s Twitter stream is hilarious.

5. Have you always wanted to write or did it come to you "later in life"?
I have always wanted to write. I was a compulsive diary-keeper as a kid (although who knows why I felt a need to document my life; it was pretty uneventful). In some ways I did make a career of writing by becoming a copywriter and working in the advertising industry, although anyone considering that career path should be warned in advance that it’s a huge time commitment with not the greatest work-life balance. Now that I am technically in the “later in life” part of my journey, I’ve made some adjustments so that I can devote a little more time to developing manuscripts.

Author Bio:
Caitlyn Duffy is a private boarding school survivor and the author of The Treadwell Academy Novels, a series about privileged girls in an elite boarding school setting and the challenges they face. The series addresses issues common to teen readers including eating disorders, divorce, grief, heartbreak, first love, drug addiction and disagreements with parents. It was Caitlyn’s dream to create a series that mixed glamour and celebrity with the real-life problems that kids endure that could be enjoyed by readers of all ages. Her writing experience includes freelance editing for publishing houses and copywriting in the advertising industry.

When she’s not writing about the girls of Treadwell, she’s walking her semi-famous dog Maxim around Park Slope, Brooklyn and drinking too much coffee.


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Bare Wires by Cherime MacFarlane

Title: Bare Wires
Author: Cherime MacFarlane
Series: The MacGrough Clan #1.5
Genre: Romance
Release Date: November 30, 2015
Summary:
Lori Ann Reasor is about to get her big break, a gallery owner in Brighton likes her work. To celebrate she treats herself to tea in a posh establishment. What she discovers there puts her off men. She will stick with painting.

Hamish is trying to hold Bushmaster together long enough to get them signed to a contract. With a prima donna and a junky in the band, it’s not easy. Bushmaster is on the verge of blowing sky high. The two young people are converging as their dreams play out. Can they both keep it together?


The album was done and over with when the band went on tour once again. The first venue down, they quickly had to go searching for a base player when Miller nearly died of an overdose that morning. He was done. A quick call to Warren had the man on the phone to every agent he could find.


Hamish got a call just as they were getting ready to leave the hotel for the airport. A very young bassist had been signed and was on the first flight out of L.A. He would meet them in Berlin. With a shake of his head, Hamish informed the rest of the band in the limo.

As Hamish was certain he might, Vincent had a tantrum. How the hell was he expected to keep everything working smoothly when the lineup was constantly changing? Hamish endured the tirade in silence with the rest of the men. 

With a shrug, MacGrough broke out his flask. "Miller isnae doin so well. Tha eejit nearly snuffed himself. I'm nae sure how his family are gonna take it."

The other members of the group felt something for the man they had played with for years. Vincent Slaughter didn't give a damn about Sandy Miller. Lurch's dark eyes stared at Hamish whose fingers were white where he was clutching the flask. 

The message was clear when Walker shook his tobacco brown head before turning to Vince. Lurch was going to have a say. "You are a piece of work man. Don't you even give one tiny little shit about a guy you've worked with for years?"

Thud joined in the chorus. "Use some of those upper crust manners yur always yappin about. Shut yur face for a bit. If Warren is sending tha kid, he has tae know somethin."

Vince opened his mouth to speak. Faced with the frowns of the other players, he snapped it shut. For a change their flight was quiet. No one felt up to commenting on the plight of someone they had known intimately for years.




Author Bio:
Although born in New Orleans, Cherime MacFarlane am proud to call myself an Alaskan. I have lived here since 1977. I have seen -40 degrees, hauled water, made bear bacon and I live in a cabin. I have used a fishwheel to catch salmon coming up the Copper River. I was my second husband's chief mechanic's helper and roadie. I have cut firewood on shares. I worked as a cocktail waitress during pipeline days in a small lodge on the Richardson Highway.

My second husband, a Scot from Glasgow, was the love of my life. When I write Scots dialect, I personally experienced hearing it from my in laws. When my husband got on the phone to Scotland, after 5 seconds I could barely understand a word.

We moved to Wasilla to get warm. It barely drops past -25 degrees here in the winter. I became a paralegal and worked for over 26 years for the same firm.

Alaska is my home. I never thought I would love it so much, I never want to leave. The beauty of Alaska is a draw I cannot resist. I love the people and the history. I have been captured by a place I came to under duress. Life does play some interesting tricks on one. My love and I were not apart more than 24 hours for 20 plus years. I never wanted to be anywhere but with him. He was a man to run the river with and was my biggest fan.


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Bare Wires #1.5

Highland Light #1

Wired for Sound #2

North by Northeast #3

Rhythm & Blues #4

Family Knots #5

The Templar's Treasure #6

The Twisted Laird #7

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Ruck by Holly S Roberts

Title: Ruck
Author: Holly S Roberts
Series: Completion #5
Genre: Sports Romance
Release Date: December 1, 2015
Summary:
Ruck me, maul me, make me scrum. Rugby is back and so is bad boy, Van Stelson. Love him or hate him, he’s decided that his brother’s happily married life might be what he’s missing.

It’s cold and miserable in Colt, Ohio and the single ladies need a hot male body to heat up their long, lonely nights. But now, Van’s taking a good long look at his friend, Danny. She’s dynamite on a rugby field and his go-to partner when he needs a drinking buddy. She’s not his usual type—dainty, feminine, or curvy. She’s athletic and independent and wants nothing sexually to do with the town’s playboy. Drinking him under the table and listening to his deepest, darkest secrets is another story.

Just friends. Can friendship build into something more without breaking hearts or will Van ruck it up again?


“We’re going to do this my way, Van.” She stops me so my back is to the couch. Her fingers go to the button of my jeans.

Okay, so no more yelling. She’s staring into my eyes and, with no uncertainty, she moves to my zipper and slowly lowers it inch by delectable inch.

“Danny,” I say on a groan as one hand slips inside my boxers and she wraps her fingers around me. I start lifting her shirt, but her other hand grips mine and stops me.

“My way.” The fire in her eyes has turned to steel. She removes her hand, jerks the front of my boxers down, and her fingers are back.

Fuck me, there’s no way I’ll argue at this point.

“Have a seat, lover boy.” She gives me a solid push back.

There’s something in her tone and eyes that my brain can’t quite grasp. My dick doesn’t have the same problem. It’s at attention and growing larger by the second. Danny’s strong, but there’s no chance of her pushing me down unless I allow it. My back hits the hard back of the sofa as Danny sinks to her knees.

Fuck me sideways.

She kneels up a bit, and her tongue extends and runs over the tip of my cock.

“Shit, Danny, what the hell?” It’s not really a question, because if she stops I don’t know what I’ll do. Her tongue takes the air from my lungs, and the next second I release a growl as she closes her mouth over the head. Her tongue is still working and I feel its slick surface as she twirls it around. I move back farther against the sofa and her eyes rise to mine.

Holy fucking God, it’s the hottest thing I’ve ever seen. I’ve had more blow jobs than I can count on my fingers and toes. It’s her large brown eyes, staring at me as her mouth works my dick. She slides down my cock slowly and her cheeks suck in. She makes every other blow job fly right out of my head. She’s watching me and, for a few seconds, I close my eyes, fighting the need to come within thirty seconds of her going down on me. When I open them again, she starts using her hand up and down my length, opposite to the rhythm of her mouth. I want her hair loose. I want it surrounding her face and brushing my thighs. Another time. There’s no way in hell I’m changing anything about this.

She takes her hand away and uses just her mouth as her fingers go to the waist of my jeans and boxers. She pulls and I lift up, so they slide under me while she pushes them down my legs. She takes advantage, and cups my balls with one hand and returns the other to my cock.

I’m losing it when all I want is for this to continue for an eternity. Her fingers, her mouth, her tongue consume me. Within too short a time, the well-known tightening of my balls can’t be denied.

“Fuck, Danny, I’m there, pull back,” I groan in a way I’ve never heard leave my mouth.

She has my dick halfway down her throat and a rumble of need growls inside her throat, which sends me over the edge. The pulse of my seed shoots, and she’s there to take it. All of it. My hips buck. Her eyes are closed now, and I finally lean my head back against the sofa and close mine.

Fuck.


What Others Are Saying:
“Ruck is a quick story about not seeing what is right in front of your eyes. But for a quick read, is packed a hell of a punch.” ~ BJ’s Book Blog

“Ruck is a short and sweet 4 star read. I love a good story of friends becoming lovers and Holly S. Roberts did a great job of setting up the perfect friends to lovers couple.” ~Author Cassandra Lawson

“The author did such a great job with Van's POV you just want more. Nice little friends to more romance. Fantastic ending.” ~Goodreads Reviewer



Author Bio:
USA Today Best-Selling Author Holly S. Roberts makes her home high in the Arizona Mountains with her husband and two spoiled dogs. She writes steamy contemporary romance as Holly, paranormal romance as D’Elen McClain, and mystery and adventure as retired police detective Suzie Ivy. You can find out more about her and her multiple personalities at her website.


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Ruck #5
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For His Pleasure by Suzanne Rock

Title: For His Pleasure
Author: Suzanne Rock
Series: Playboys of Boston #2
Genre: Contemporary
Release Date: December 1, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks
Summary:
A sensual tale about the risks and rewards of falling in too deep-and loving it.

PASSION COMES WITH A PRICE.
Tired of living a lie, Arianna Perconti leaves her fiancΓ© at the altar and runs into the arms of her family's fiercest rival, Jason Stone. Hoping to cash in on their 'friends-with-benefits' arrangement while hiding out from bitter relatives, Ari instead finds herself falling deeply, desperately in love with the sexy hotelier. Jason is everything she never knew she wanted-yet she will do absolutely everything to show him she means business. In bed...

CAN THEY AFFORD TO LIVE WITHOUT IT?
Jason lives in the fast lane and has the race cars to prove it. A born adrenaline junkie, he must admit that Ari is the perfect partner for his heart-pumping bedroom games. The problem? The relationship is starting to deepen, but is Jason really cut out to be a one-woman kind of man? The question haunts his days, only fueling the passion he and Ari share during those hot, hot nights. But when an estranged sibling enters the picture, threatening to take away everything he holds dear, Jason is forced to make a decision: Say goodbye to his wild ways or risk losing Ari forever?


“An intelligent Perconti woman giving back to the community on her own terms,” he murmured as he slid his gaze down her body. “You must be a thorn in your brother’s side.”

Ari’s heart melted a little at the word intelligent. No one had ever called her that before. She knew that the media painted her as a dopey party girl, someone who couldn’t do anything without her brothers’ help. For years she had tried to change people’s minds, but the reputation clung to her like tanning spray.

 “Leo’s just overprotective, that’s all. I like to do things my own way.” As she placed her hand on his chest to stop him from pulling her closer, she marveled at the ripple of muscle underneath his leather jacket. The more she talked to him, the harder it was to remember why he was off-limits. “I think I frustrate him sometimes.”

Jason chuckled. “Then it appears we have something in common, Ms. Perconti.”

“Do we?” She dragged her gaze away from her hand and looked at his face.

He nodded as amusement twinkled in his eyes. “I frustrate your brother, too.”

Her breath caught as he flashed her his dimpled smile. “I guess we’re quite the pair, huh?”

“Yes, Arianna. Quite the pair indeed.” Heat rippled through her as the amusement in his features faded, replaced by something more intense and hungry.

Time seemed to stand still as the crowd around them faded away. Ari’s heartbeat quickened, and her legs felt weak. God, if he could affect her like this with just a look, imagine what he could do with a touch, a kiss . . .

Off-limits, she had to yell in her mind. After a long moment, she cleared her throat and glanced at the McLaren beside her. “Your car is beautiful,” she said in an effort to change the subject.

“It has nothing on you.”

“Flirt.” Ari felt the heat rise to her cheeks as she pulled her hand from his. “My brother warned me about you.”

“Oh really?” He seemed amused. “What did he say?”

“He said that you were a manipulative asshole.”

He snorted. “He’d be right—but only in the boardroom.” He reclined his arm on the car and inched his fingers toward her. “Outside the boardroom, I can be . . .”

“Kind?” She dragged her gaze back to his.

“Fun,” he corrected.

“Forgiving?” She leaned forward, closing the distance between them.

“Laid back.” He eased his fingers closer and twirled a long strand of her hair around his fingers.

“I like laid back.” She focused on his right dimple and wondered what it would feel like to run her tongue over it.

“You do?” He shifted his gaze from his fingers to her face.

She nodded. “I like fun even more.”

“Well then.” He shifted his hand and hooked his finger under her chin. “It seems as if we have something else in common, Ms. Perconti.”

She nodded. “I think we do. And call me Ari.”

“Ari.” His voice was filled with awe and caused something to flutter in her lower abdomen.

“Here we are.” Stefan hurried over with the cameraman and a large cardboard check. “Sorry about the wait.”

“No trouble.” Ari cleared her throat and stepped away from Jason. The distance allowed her to get her bearings. What was she doing, flirting with the enemy?

 “Now, if you’d stand here, Ms. Perconti,” the cameraman said.

Ari moved into position and made a show of taking the oversized check from Stefan and Jason. Then they repositioned themselves as Ari and Stefan handed an equally obnoxiously large check to Jason.

“I told you that I didn’t want the money,” Jason said to Stefan.

“You have to take it,” Ari said. “It’s part of the deal. The winner gets ten percent.”

“But I don’t need it.”

“It’s not about needing it. It’s about sportsmanship and fun.”

“Interesting,” he murmured as he dragged his gaze over her curvy frame. “What if there was another way to achieve your goal, one where you got to keep your money?”

“Another way?” Ari wrinkled her brow in confusion.

“Yes.”

Intrigued, Ari lowered her check. “I’m listening.”

“Instead of taking the money, I take you.” When she frowned, he hurried to continue. “Just out to dinner. One boring dinner, that’s all I ask.”

She narrowed her gaze. “So let me get this straight. I get to keep the money if I go out to some fancy restaurant with you?”

“Not a fancy restaurant. Somewhere more . . . amusing.” He grinned, showing off his dimple once more. “Consider it an extra donation from a benefactor.” He inched closer. “Someone who admires your passion for helping kids.”

Ari glanced at Stefan, unsure. “It’s a lot of money you’re giving up.” And she knew that Leo would frown upon her taking it from Jason. This was a dangerous game they were playing, one where she could end up in a lot of trouble with her family. “Leo would kill me for being indebted to you.”

“Just some beer and wings, and your brother will never know.” Jason closed the distance between them and flashed her that gorgeous, conspiratorial smile. “It will be our little secret.”

“Beer and wings, huh?” The prospect of going to a restaurant with Jason was exciting. She never got to just hang out informally. Everything was orchestrated to show off her family’s cultured lifestyle and elegance. Beer and wings sounded . . . divine.

Ari nibbled her lower lip. Jason may be manipulative, but she was a Perconti. If Leo could hold his own with Jason, it stood to reason that she could, too. Besides, it was only dinner. How much trouble could she possibly get into in a couple of hours?

“Okay,” she said. “I’ll do it.”

“Perfect. It’s a date.”

 “Can we take the picture now?” Stefan asked.

“Of course.” As Jason moved beside Ari and slid his arm around her waist, warm tingles raced over her skin. She did her best to listen to the instructions and smile for the camera, but it was difficult. Jason’s body heat surrounded her, making her feel safe and protected. It took most of her willpower to resist curling up next to him and burying her face in that strong, protective chest, especially when his fingers were inching down from her waist, skimming against her hip and upper thigh.

When the session was done, Stefan helped the cameraman pack up his things. Ari started to move away from Jason, but he gripped her hip tighter, holding her in place. Before she could protest, he leaned close, so close that his lips were inches away from her ear.

“I’ll pick you up tomorrow at eight. Be sure to wear something comfortable.” He dragged his hungry gaze down her body. “If you’re good, I might even give you a ride in the McLaren.”

The McLaren. Ari took a step back and watched Jason get into his car, wondering just what she had gotten herself into.

Author Bio:
NYT and USA Today Best Selling author Suzanne Rock resides in central Massachusetts with her college sweetheart and two daughters. She published her first book in June 2009 and has since written over thirty erotic stories with St. Martin’s Press, Simon and Schuster, Electric Ink Press, and others. For a listing of her books and workshops, please visit her website.

Suzanne is represented by Deidre Knight of The Knight Agency and writes mainstream romances under the pen name Ava Conway.


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