Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Blog Tour and Review: LETHAL LIES by Rebecca Zanetti

by Rebecca Zanetti
Series: Blood Brothers, #2
On Sale: May 16, 2017
Publisher: Forever


A deadly secret can't stay buried forever . . .

Revenge. It's the only thing that will help Anya Best sleep at night. The serial killer who murdered her sister is on the loose, and Anya will stop at nothing to put him behind bars—even use herself as bait to lure him out of hiding. But she can't do this alone.

Private investigator Heath Jones's job is to bring bastards to justice. This time it's personal. He knew the Copper Killer's latest victim so when her sister asks for his help, he's all in. But when Anya uses the media to taunt the killer, she exposes Heath's identity, putting them both in jeopardy. Now, secrets buried long ago are coming to light and the forces determined to destroy him are watching Heath's every move, waiting to exact their own revenge. And they'll use anything and anyone to get to Heath.


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She swallowed and met his gaze. “All right. Let me get this straight. We’re going undercover to flush out a killer who’s obsessed with me, and you’re offering to play at being my man for real with no strings or future?” She hoisted the bag onto her shoulder. “That’s some ego. Are you that good in bed?”
“Yes.” And that was definite interest in her eyes.
She clicked her tongue. “I’ll keep your offer in mind.”
“You do that.” He maintained a low and calm voice. “While you’re considering, let’s look at the situation. You have publicly made me your fiancé in order to draw out a killer, which means I have to act as such. Any halfway intelligent law enforcement officer or private investigator would keep his redheaded fiancée very close after the stunt you just pulled. If you’re not with me, the killer is going to be very suspicious.”
She stilled, expressions crossing her face rapidly. “That’s a good point,” she said slowly.
Yeah. Sometimes reality helped him out a little. Plus, the killer had a hard-on for her, and he must already have plans to take her at some point. She’d just upped the timeline. “In addition, you need protection around the clock now, and I’m willing to provide that. So while you’re keeping my offer in mind, we’ll be staying in the same hotel room or same apartment.” He made sure he had her full attention. “While we plan the wedding, of course.”
Her challenging smile thrilled something inside him. “That’s fair.”
He stepped back to give her some space. “Good. Are you ready?”
“Yes.” She looked around the room. “I do have to ask. What if I didn’t agree with you about your keeping secrets from me? Considering people shoot at you, and I’m going to be at your side, it seems fair that you tell me who these people are.” She cocked her head to the side and focused back on him.
“I have more immediate concerns than being fair,” he said smoothly. “You brought me into this mess.”
A frown drew down her eyebrows. “Listen. I want an answer about you.”
“I just gave you one.” At her mulish expression, he searched for better words that wouldn’t end in an argument.
Suddenly, the door blew wide open and bounced loudly off the table. “Anya!” he yelled, jumping for her.




Rebecca Zanetti is the author of over twenty-five romantic suspense, dark paranormal, and contemporary romances, and her books have appeared multiple times on the New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon bestseller lists. She has received a Publisher's Weekly Starred Review for Wicked Edge, Romantic Times Reviewer Choice Nominations for Forgotten Sins and Sweet Revenge, and RT Top Picks for several of her novels.  She lives in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest with her own alpha hero, two kids, a couple of dogs, a crazy cat...and a huge extended family.  She believes strongly in luck, karma, and working her butt off...and she thinks one of the best things about being an author, unlike the lawyer she used to be, is that she can let the crazy out.


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Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Review: MAGNATE by Joanna Shupe

by Joanna Shupe
The Knickerbockers Club #1

New York City’s Gilded Age shimmers with unimaginable wealth and glittering power. The men of the Knickerbocker Club know this more than anyone else. But for one millionaire, the business of love is not what he expected…

Born in the slums of Five Points, Emmett Cavanaugh climbed his way to the top of a booming steel empire and now holds court in an opulent Fifth Avenue mansion. His rise in stations, however, has done little to elevate his taste in women. He loathes the city’s “high society” types, but a rebellious and beautiful blue-blood just might change all that.

Elizabeth Sloane’s mind is filled with more than the latest parlor room gossip. Lizzie can play the Stock Exchange as deftly as New York’s most accomplished brokers—but she needs a man to put her skills to use. Emmett reluctantly agrees when the stunning socialite asks him to back her trades and split the profits. But love and business make strange bedfellows, and as their fragile partnership begins to crack, they’ll discover a passion more frenzied than the trading room floor...

I am used to reading historicals.  I love historical novels.  I majored in history in college and went to graduate school to study U.S. History.  What strikes me is that often in the romance world, "historical" novels default to European stories, especially the Regency Era.  However, Joanna Shupe reminds us that there are plenty of stories to be told in the Gilded Age of U.S. History.  It is the era between the Civil War and World War I when industrialization made people very wealthy.  It is the time of glamour and corruption.  Those in high society had very strict social norms that rivaled the British ton.  This is also the age of Horatio Alger - the rags to riches stories that fuel the belief of meritocracy.  The Gilded Age has so many possibilities. 

I really enjoy the evolution of our main characters.  Emmett Cavanaugh is our Horatio Alger-esque hero who grows up in the Five Points slums to become one of the riches men in New York City.  A member of the Knickerbocker Club, this elite group of men wield their influence to shape the politics and business in New York City and beyond.  These men are the movers and shakers of their age.  

Elizabeth Sloan bristles under the restrictions society has for women.  Those who defy the norm are often outcasts or are seen with suspicion.  However, Elizabeth is determine to forge her own path in the world of finance. She only needs someone to give her a chance. 

I love strong and smart female characters and Elizabeth easily fits the bill.  I enjoy her tenacity and her ability to outsmart the men in her life.  She is adventurous and unconventional.  Emmett is hardworking and hard-edged, but a loving brother.  He is totally focused on his business but with her, he feels alive: "...she'd burned hot and bright, a live electric change in his arms. A jolt of current that reached the long-dead places inside him." The relationship takes us through a gamut of emotions and it reaches a truly satisfying end.  

This book triggered a fascination from me to learn more about this age.  I can't wait to get to the next book.  

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

ARC Book Review: FAST Kill by Kaylea Cross

FAST Kill 
by Kaylea Cross
DEA FAST series #2

About the Book: 
The past has come back to haunt her. Having battled long and hard to put her painful past behind her, DEA Special Agent Taylor Kennedy has done everything in her power to make a new life for herself. She never dreamed that same past would suddenly show up on her doorstep one night, or that its reappearance would threaten everything she’s built for herself. Faced with the unthinkable, she’ll have to make the agonizing choice between her trusted childhood friend, and the man who’s managed to steal her wary heart. And the consequences could be fatal. FAST Bravo member Logan Granger knows Taylor was hurt badly by something in her past. He never expected to fall for a straight-laced, uptight forensic accountant, but Taylor has managed to redefine his definition of sexy, and now he wants to uncover all her secrets. Though they’re opposites in almost every way, Logan is determined to break through her barriers and show her just how good things can be between them. Then their worst nightmare is realized when Taylor becomes the target of the merciless Veneno cartel, and Logan will risk everything to save her—including his life. 

If you are a fan of romantic suspense, FAST Kill will hit you center mass. FAST is the DEA’s version of a specialize tactics unit. This story has suspense, drama, and hot romance. 

Logan Granger is the newest member of FAST Bravo unit. He joined the DEA straight out of college with the intent to join FAST at the first opportunity. In other words, he is focused on his career and is thrilled to be living the life. Taylor Kennedy is a DEA Special Agent specializing in forensic accounting. She is as brainy as they come and I love it. It would be easy to say that opposites attract, but it takes a special touch to get just the right balance of nerdiness to alpha goodness. Kaylea Cross does a great job in making the relationship between these two work. 

The suspense element of the story revolves around the DEA investigation into a South American cartel. The overarching plot is familiar but I really enjoyed the added emotional element thrown in to Taylor’s character. Taylor is chasing the bad guys through mounds of paperwork. The unique twist is that the number two man for a high ranking lieutenant also happens to be Taylor’s foster brother. He is the one who protected her while in foster care. She has a special place in her heart for him. It is easy to imagine her conflict, especially since even today she finds it difficult to make deep connections with people. The added conflict gives this story another level of tension that kept me glued to the pages.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.