Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker #Review

Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker #ReviewEmma in the Night by Wendy Walker
Published by St. Martin's Press on August 8th 2017
Genres: Fiction, Thrillers, Suspense, Psychological
Pages: 320
Amazon
Goodreads
four-stars

"Both twisted and twisty, this smart psychological thriller sets a new standard for unreliable narrators." –Booklist, Starred Review
One night three years ago, the Tanner sisters disappeared: fifteen-year-old Cass and seventeen-year-old Emma. Three years later, Cass returns, without her sister Emma. Her story is one of kidnapping and betrayal, of a mysterious island where the two were held. But to forensic psychiatrist Dr. Abby Winter, something doesn't add up. Looking deep within this dysfunctional family Dr. Winter uncovers a life where boundaries were violated and a narcissistic parent held sway. And where one sister's return might just be the beginning of the crime.
Bestselling author Wendy Walker returns with another winning thriller, Emma in the Night.

Review

Two sisters, Emma and Cass, go missing one night without a trace. There is literally no evidence of what could have possibly happened to Cass and the only thing found of Emma’s is her car and a pair of flip flops at the beach. Three years go by without any answers and the case has gone cold when suddenly Cass shows up on her mother’s doorstep. Thus begins a tale of the events leading up to that night and what Cass says happened during the three years she was gone. Dr. Winter, the forensic psychologist, working the case knows something isn’t right with Cass’s story but she can’t tell exactly what it is. When all the pieces finally come together, will they be able to find Emma?

Emma in the Night is the first book I have read by Wendy Walker. I really enjoyed the writing style and narration of the book. It is told from the POV of both Cass and Dr. Winter and is told through stories of what happened more so than flashbacks so we don’t really get to experience the emotions as they happen. There is a lot of detail about narcissistic personality disorder and the relationships of a narcissist to their family. Overall, I really enjoyed it even though it was slow in places. I look forward to reading more from this author.

four-stars

Mini Loaded Envelopes

If you’ve been around for awhile then you know that I love my planner. If you haven’t, you will learn that soon enough. I recently joined a few swap groups on Facebook to “help” my planner addiction and it has been awesome! I love getting Happy Mail!

About a month ago, there was a swap for a mini loaded envelope or flipbook. If you are like me, you probably have no idea what either of those are. Pinterest is awesome for finding this kind of thing and there are oodles of pictures and tutorials that you can find.

I opted for the mini loaded envelope and used this tutorial to make mine. It was super easy and gave me an excuse to get the scoring board I have been eyeing.

I used brown cardstock to make my envelope and then covered it with a cute scrapbook paper.

Then the fun really began as I tried to decide what all to put inside. I looked up tons of images on Pinterest and watched more tutorials to get an idea of what everyone put in their loaded envelopes. I found that normally there was a theme to the overall look of the envelope and there was always a wand.

I made my wand using two different scrapbook papers. I experimented with the sizes and found that these two fit nicely together. Then I used a bow embellishment I found at Hobby Lobby to finish it off and attached it to a pencil.

I used another bow embellishment and paper clip to make this cute clip. It’s so simple but I thought it looked really cute.

I found these cute tags at Hobby Lobby as well and added scrapbook paper to them and some twine to make a couple of cute gift tags. I also added a couple of embellishments to these as well.

I used a couple of tiny clothespins to hold my tags on and filled the rest of the envelope with stickers, washi tape, and a pencil to give it the complete look. I had to tape a couple of things in to ensure they stayed in the envelope.

What do you think? I will probably be making some more soon to send out to a few pen pals.

Duke of Desire by Elizabeth Hoyt #ExcerptReveal

Duke of Desire by Elizabeth Hoyt
The Maiden Lane Series #12
Published October 17th 2017
Grand Central Publishing

A LADY OF LIGHT

Refined, kind, and intelligent, Lady Iris Jordan finds herself the unlikely target of a diabolical kidnapping.  Her captors are the notoriously evil Lords of Chaos.  When one of the masked-and-nude!-Lords spirits her away to his carriage, she shoots him…only to find she may have been a trifle hasty.

A DUKE IN DEEPEST DARKNESS

Cynical, scarred, and brooding, Raphael de Chartres, the Duke of Dyemore, has made it his personal mission to infiltrate the Lords of Chaos and destroy them.  Rescuing Lady Jordan was never in his plans.  But now with the Lords out to kill them both, he has but one choice: marry the lady in order to keep her safe.

CAUGHT IN A WEB OF DANGER…AND DESIRE

Much to Raphael’s irritation, Iris insists on being the sort of duchess who involes herself in his life—and bed.  Soon he’s drawn to both to her quick wit and her fiery passion.  But when Iris discovers that Raphael’s past may be even more dangerous than the present, she falters.  Is their love strong enough to withstand not only the Lords of Chaos but also Raphael’s own demons?

Amazon // B&N // iBooks // Google // Kobo // IndieBound // Goodreads

Excerpt

Iris tasted of red wine—the red wine she must have drunk at dinner—and all the reasons he shouldn’t do this fled his mind. A vital chain broke in his psyche and everything he’d held back, everything he’d restrained with all his might, was suddenly set free. He surged into her mouth, desperate for the feel, for the taste of her, his wife, his duchess, his Iris. She was soft and sweet and warm and he wanted to devour her. To seize her and hold her and never let her go. The deep unfathomable well of his urges toward her frightened him, and he knew that if she became aware of them, they would frighten her as well.

But that was the thing—she wasn’t aware of them. She thought she was simply consummating their marriage or some such rot, God help them both.

She gripped his naked arms and the beast within him shuddered and stretched, claws scraping against the ground.

Dear God, he wanted this woman.

But he had to remember—to keep that human part of his mind awake and alive—that he mustn’t seed her.

Must never do as his cursed father had done.

He broke from her mouth, feeling the pulse of his cock against his breeches, and trailed his lips across her cheek to her ear. “Come with me, sweet girl.”

She blinked up at him, wide blue-gray eyes a little dazed.

He covered her mouth again before she could speak—either to consent or decline—and drew her slowly backward, step by step, toward the bed, until he hit it with the backs of his legs. He broke the kiss, looking down at her, her wet ruby lips parted, her cheeks flushed pink.

She looked edible.

“Raphael,” she whispered, his name on her lips like a plea, and something within him broke.

This wasn’t what he wanted. This wasn’t right. But it was the only thing possible and it would have to suffice because it was all he could do.

And trying to resist was killing him.

He traced a hand up her arm, over her shoulder, to her neck, and from there touched her bound golden hair. “Will you take down your hair for me?”

She gasped—a small, quick inhalation—and nodded.

He watched as she raised her arms, her stormy eyes locked on his, and withdrew the pins from her hair one by one until the heavy mass fell like a curtain around her shoulders. He bent then and gathered the locks in his hands, burying his face in her neck, inhaling her.

His woman.

He felt her tremble against him and then her fingers speared through his hair. “Raphael.”

He lifted his head.

Her hands fell away and she began undressing, her head bent down as she unhooked her bodice. He saw that her fingers fumbled and he knew that a better man would turn aside. Would give her privacy to collect herself and disrobe with modesty.

But he wasn’t such a man. He wanted all of her—her mistakes and her private moments, her shame and her worries—everything she held back from the rest of the world. As he wanted this. This moment of fumbling.

This moment of intimacy.

She pulled the bodice from her arms. Untied her skirts and let them pool around her feet before kicking them aside. Glanced up at him and then worked at the laces to her stays.

Her unbound hair fell over her shoulders, nearly to her waist, thick and swaying gently as she moved.

Beautiful.

She was beautiful.

She pulled her loosened stays off over her head and stood in chemise, stockings, and shoes. The tips of her breasts peeked out from beneath the thin cloth.

She began to bend for her shoes, but he stopped her. “No. Let me.”

He grasped her by the waist and lifted her to the bed.

Carefully he drew off her slippers, letting them drop to the hardwood floor before running his hand up her left calf. The room was so quiet he could hear each breath she drew. She watched him as he reached under her chemise, into that warm spot behind her knee, tugging at the ribbon of her garter.

Her breath hitched.

He glanced up at her as he found bare skin. Hot, so hot under her skirt. He could almost imagine he smelled her, standing between her bent legs. He pulled the first stocking off and moved to her other foot, smoothing his thumb over her arch, over that high instep, that sweet, delicate ankle. The curve of her calf—one of the loveliest curves in nature—elegant and perfect. Someday he’d like to draw her nude.

The faint, almost inaudible whisper as he pulled the ribbon off raised the hairs on the back of his neck. His nostrils flared and he couldn’t wait any longer. He lifted her bodily, moving her farther up on the bed, placing her head and shoulders against the pillows, and then pushed up her chemise, crawling between her spread thighs and settling to enjoy what he’d found.

There. There she was, her pretty, pretty pink cunny, all coral lips and wispy dark-blond curls. He hiked her trembling legs over his arms, ignoring her gasp of shocked surprise. He glanced up once and saw wide, wondering eyes gazing back at him. Her gentlemanly first husband had evidently never done this to her.

More fool he.

About the Author

Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times bestselling author of over seventeen lush historical romances including the Maiden Lane series.Publishers Weekly has called her writing “mesmerizing.” She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with three untrained dogs, a garden in constant need of weeding, and the long-suffering Mr. Hoyt.

Website // Twitter // Facebook // Amazon // BookBub

Books Galore: New Releases, Sales, and Freebies

I thought I would try something new today and share with you some of the new releases for this week as well as some sales and freebies. All links will lead to Amazon.

New Releases

 

 

$0.99 Sale

preorder

Freebies

Remember to check the price before you buy. These were free at time of posting.

**This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something through these links I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Born, Darkly by Trisha Wolfe #ReleaseBlitz

Born, Darkly
Trisha Wolfe
Darkly, Madly Duet #1
Publication Date: September 19th 2017
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

He challenged her sanity.

She shattered his reality.

They dared each other…to the brink of madness

A dark and twisted maze awaits criminal psychologist London Noble when she falls for her patient, convicted serial killer, Grayson Pierce Sullivan. As she unravels the traps, her sanity tested with each game, she’s forced to acknowledge the true evil in the world around her.

GoodreadsAmazon/ Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

 

Author Bio:

From an early age, Trisha Wolfe dreamed up fantasy worlds and characters and was accused of talking to herself. Today, she lives in South Carolina with her family and writes full time, using her fantasy worlds as an excuse to continue talking to herself.

For more information on Trisha Wolfe and her works, please visit: www.TrishaWolfe.com

To be the first to hear about new releases and sale events, sign up for Trisha Wolfe’s Newsletter: http://bit.ly/1rXTKI7

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

GIVEAWAY!
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Burning Cold by Lisa Lieberman #BlogTour #Review

 

Burning Cold
Lisa Lieberman
(Cara Walden Mystery, #2)
Publication date: September 12th 2017
Genres: Adult, Historical, Mystery

Budapest: 1956. Newlywed Cara Walden’s brother Zoltán has disappeared in the middle of the Hungarian revolution, harboring a deadly wartime secret. Will Cara or the Soviets find him first?

Cutting short her honeymoon in Paris to rescue a sibling she’s never met was not Cara’s idea, but her husband Jakub has a reckless streak, and she is too much in love to question his judgment. Together with her older brother Gray, they venture behind the Iron Curtain, seeking clues to Zoltán’s whereabouts among his circle of fellow dissidents, all victims of the recently overthrown Communist regime. One of them betrayed him, and Cara realizes that the investigation has put every person they’ve met at risk. Inadvertently, they’ve also unmasked a Russian spy, who is now tailing them in the hope that they will lead him to Zoltán.

The noir film of Graham Greene’s The Third Man inspires Lisa Lieberman’s historical thriller. Burning Cold features a compelling female protagonist who comes to know her own strength in the course of her adventures.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

Review

Burning Cold is the sequel to All The Wrong Places but it can be read as a standalone.

This is a very well written historical mystery. You can tell that Lisa Lieberman did her research when writing this series and it’s always nice to read a well-written, well- researched historical novel. In Burning Cold, we are transported to 1956 Budapest. Cara and her brother Gray are on a mission to find their older brother, Zoltan, who they just learned about. All of this takes place while in the middle of the two waves of Soviet soldiers intent on stopping the Hungarian revolution.

I really enjoyed this book and the way the author is able to make you feel as if you are in Budapest with the characters experiencing every situation as they do. I look forward to reading more from this author and hope there are several more books in this series to come.

Rating: 4.5 stars

Author Bio:

Lisa Lieberman is the author of the Cara Walden series of historical mysteries featuring blacklisted Hollywood people in exotic European locales. All the Wrong Places and Burning Cold are available from Passport Press in print and e-book.

Trained as a modern European cultural and intellectual historian, Lieberman abandoned a perfectly respectable academic career for the life of a vicarious adventurer through dangerous times and places. She has written extensively on postwar Europe and is the founder of the classic movie blog Deathless Prose. She now directs a nonprofit foundation dedicated to redressing racial and economic inequity in public elementary and secondary schools. She is a member of Sisters in Crime and Mystery Writers of America.

After dragging their three children all over Europe while they were growing up, Lisa and her husband are happily settled in Amherst, Massachusetts.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook

 

GIVEAWAY!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Monthly Wrap-up: August 2017

August was a busy month and I have no idea how I managed to read as much as I did. Towards the end of the month I started participating in a couple of planner swap groups on Facebook and I’ve been having fun getting items together to send out as well as making some of the items. I’ve been slacking on some of the posts that I was wanting to do as far as planning and crafts go but that should change in September. I can’t wait to show you what I’ve been working on.

Books Read
Ethan’s Daughter by Rachel Brimble
My Best Friend’s Ex by Meghan Quinn
The Forbidden by Jodi Ellen Malpas
Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker
Hanging in the Stars by Sienna Blake
Yes Please by Amy Poehler (audio)
Irresistible You by Kate Meader
The Truth About Porn Star Boyfriends by Sunniva Dee
Disciplined by the Duke by Alyson Chase
How to Marry a Marquess by Stacy Reid
Ready to Run by Lauren Layne
The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury (audio)
I’ve Got You Under My Skin by Mary Higgins Clark (Audio)
A Love to Remember by Bronwen Evans
Rebel by Rebecca Yarros
Drift by Amy Murray
Reviews Written

Melt by Carrie Aarons #CoverReveal

 

Title: Melt
Author: Carrie Aarons
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Cover Design: Sarah Hansen, Okay Creations
Release Date: September 17, 2017
Blurb
You scream. I scream. We all scream during … well, you get the point.
 
After a failed eight-year relationship and a cross-country move, the last thing I’m looking for as a single mom is a new flame. In fact, diapers, walls marked in crayon, and daycare pickup are the only things on my to-do list.
 
Enter Jake Brady, your friendly neighborhood food truck owner whose dimples and delicacies won’t seem to leave well enough alone. With more popularity than the president, his wine-infused sweet treats have our nation’s capital hooked. He’s spontaneous, smug and all-American gorgeous; a dangerous combination considering he has no interest in taking on the responsibilities that rule my life.
 
But when we can’t seem to sample enough of each other’s … desserts, things start to get complicated. Jake is biting off more than he can chew, and when I watch him with my daughter, I can’t seem to freeze my melting heart.
 
Maybe it’s his waffle cone. Maybe it’s his … banana split. Either way, I think I’m in trouble with a cherry on top.

 

Author Bio

 

Author of romance
novels such as Red Card and All the Frogs in Manhattan, Carrie Aarons writes
sexy, swoon-worthy, sarcastic characters who won’t get out of her head until
she puts them down on a page.
Carrie has wanted to be an author since the first time she opened a book, and
can’t imagine a better or more maddening profession.

A lover of good manicures, Riesling and the beach, she enjoys chasing her puppy
through the dog parks of New Jersey, or trying to make her husband binge watch
the latest Netflix craze.


Author Links

Untold by Shannon Richard #ReleaseBlitz

Untold by Shannon Richard #ReleaseBlitzUntold by Shannon Richard
Published by Grand Central Publishing on September 5th 2017
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Coming of Age, Contemporary Women
Pages: 400
Format: eBook
Amazon//B&N//iBooks//Google Play//Kobo
Goodreads

SOMETIMES LOVE HAS A PLAN OF ITS OWN . . .
Brie Davis came to Mirabelle, Florida, for one thing: the funeral of her birth mother-a woman she never had a chance to know. Now Brie must sort through her mother's life to get the answers she was denied. She plans to leave as soon as she can . . . except the sexy veterinarian makes Brie's pulse beat faster than she's willing to admit.
Finn Shepherd knows Brie's only in town for a short while, but he can't stay away. Instead he finds himself looking for more reasons to keep her close. Finn's already had his fair share of heartbreak, yet Brie makes him want to take that risk again. Now all Finn has to do is convince her to take a chance on him . . . before she disappears from his life forever.
Look for more books in the Country Roads series!UndoneUndeniableUnstoppableUnforgettableUndressedUnsungUncontrollable

Find the Author: Website, Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Amazon, Instagram

Excerpt

“Are you leaving soon?”

“In a bit. I want to see the end of the game.”

“Really now?” He leaned in close to her again. And for what was probably the fiftieth time that night she could smell the clean masculine scent that clung to him. Soap and maybe a little aftershave combined with him. He smelled incredible.

So. Damn. Good.

“Yeah, I’m a Stampede fan now. I’m in it to win it.” She couldn’t stop herself from leaning in a bit closer herself.

“Commitment, I like it.”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah.” His smile grew and his eyes got more intense, the blue getting deeper. “It’s not the only thing I like either.”

“What else do you like?” Her voice dropped low as she spoke. Oh God, the more time she spent with him, the more he affected her. The closer he got to her, the more he affected her. The more he looked at her, the more he affected her.

He just affected her.

“About you? The list keeps growing, and growing. Give me twenty minutes and I’d be happy to tell you about it. In great detail.”

Her stomach flipped and the air in her lungs caught. This time her inability to breath had nothing to do with suffocating pressure. “What happens in twenty minutes?” She somehow managed to ask.

“The game is over.” He turned just a little bit so he could incline his head toward the TV, not taking his eyes off of her while he did it.

“You don’t need to stay here? Until closing?”

“Nope, just came in to help with the rush during the game. I’m free after that.”

“Right,” she nodded slowly, her stomach doing a summersault. “And if I said yes? What happens then?”

He moved back so that he was standing directly in front of her again, leaning in close. The nearness of him combined with the way he was looking at her and the topic of conversation—that she was 99.9% sure was one about them having sex—was making her pulse race. And that wasn’t the only thing he was doing to her. It was taking everything in her not to squirm in her seat. She somehow managed to subtly press her thighs together. It was all she could do to combat the swelling ache.

 

About Shannon Richard

Shannon Richard grew up in the Florida Panhandle as the baby sister of two overly protective but loving brothers. She was raised by a more than somewhat eccentric mother, a self-proclaimed vocabularist who showed her how to get lost in a book and a father who passed on his love for coffee and really loud music. She graduated from Florida State University with a BA in English Literature and still lives in Tallahassee where she battles everyday life with writing, reading, and a rant every once in a while. Okay, so the rants might happen on a regular basis. She's still waiting for her Southern, scruffy, Mr. Darcy, and in the meantime writes love stories to indulge her overactive imagination. Oh, and she's a pretty big fan of the whimsy.