Saturday, October 16, 2021

#RachelReviews: The End of August (Part One) by Rue Volley

 THE END OF AUGUST (Part One) by Rue Volley

Release Date: October 13, 2021; 315 pages


It's 1985.
Everyone is wearing a Swatch Watch and carrying a Trapper Keeper.
Goonies, Back to the Future, and The Breakfast Club are killing it at the theaters.
Super Mario Brothers is a lifestyle.
Posters of Duran Duran and Madonna are on every bedroom wall.
But for fifteen-year-old, August East, the biggest news is the move his family made to the odd little town of Whynot, Ohio, a cute boy named Keller West, and, of course, that whole murder thing.

*This is a DUAL POV*


A tale of finding acceptance and love while delving into the darker sides of life.

Rue’s covers and blurbs have always been eye-catching, and although I’ve followed her on social media for years, this was my first foray into actually reading one her works. (Thank you for the ARC opportunity.) As a child of the 80s, this doesn’t disappoint. From subtle mentions of Chuck Taylor’s to the Stars Wars glasses we all collected from the Happy Meals to the all-important soundtrack of the decade, The End of August knocks it out of the park as a walk down memory lane. As a lover of all things ghostly and paranormal, August also wins my heart.

August East, Keller West, Shylo, and the fabulous sibling duo of Vincent and Evie make up the perfect pentagram-oriented five-person team as they dig into the history and bowels of Mill House. The big question is, who is being protected? Something we won’t learn until part II releases next year.

Additional thoughts  (not shared elsewhere)

There were some assorted issues I found while reading which went beyond a misplaced comma here or there. As an editor, and knowing this was an ARC which would be finalized before publication, the handful of inconsistencies, some spelling, and misused punctuation I could overlook. However, as a reader, one of my biggest pet peeves, what I call “recap overlap,” pushed me to take a star. While some readers don’t mind re-reading the same scene from multiple POVs, I do, and often end up skimming and moving on. There are ways to show all the sides of the story without retelling the same main part.

Please note, this is my personal opinion, and should not detract you from experiencing the delicious tale unfolding under Rue's talented pen. The End of August is not to be missed!

NEW RELEASE BL!TZ: A Heart So Wild by Raine Thomas #GIVEAWAY

A Heart So Wild
Raine Thomas
Publication date: October 12th 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Sports

He’s a sexy left winger for the NHL’s newest expansion team, the Atlanta Siege, and he’s a player in every sense of the word.

Callan Murphy’s on a mission: get his teammate laid.

A night out at Atlanta’s hottest nightclub is all he’ll need to find the perfect woman to blow his goalie’s … mind. But when he catches a glimpse of a dark-haired beauty standing across the dance floor, winging for his friend is the last thing on his mind.

She’s perfect, all right. Perfect for him. Now he just has to convince her of that, something he never expects to be such a challenge.

She’s a mysterious bombshell who’s about to teach him what it’s like to play in the big leagues of the heart.

Roxy Wagner’s on a mission: get her best friend laid.

When they head out to ladies’ night in search of Mr. Right Now, it doesn’t take her long to spot the two tall, dark, and stud-lies watching them from across the club. One look at the bearded hottie with the seductive heat in his eyes tells her she’s about to go up against a real player.

She should know … it takes one to know one. And she’s not interested in playing for keeps.

It starts with a night out winging for friends. How it all ends will depend on whether Callan can find a way to tame Roxy’s wild heart.

Game on.

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Callan was a natural wingman. He enjoyed scouting for women who conveyed interest in being approached. He looked forward to making small talk with them, getting to know them and gauging their level of interest in his companion. If those women were there with friends, he was equally enthused about occupying them so his companion could take the lead with the one who interested him.

Being a wingman was an artform, and Callan prided himself on being a virtuoso at it.

“If you’re not feeling a draw to anyone,” he said, “let’s just find a couple of ladies and see how things go. There’s no rush.”

Christian made a resigned sound. “Fine. Who?”

Just then, Callan’s gaze lifted. And he saw her.

She stood near the bar in a small group, but he registered only her. His first thought was she had been made for this moonlit setting. Her dark, lustrous hair spilled over her shoulders and halfway down her back in soft curls. Her skin looked luminous against the club’s dark backdrop. The pinhole lights sparkled off her white, long-sleeved mini dress, making it glimmer like it had been dipped in ice crystals. Her long, spectacular legs ended in silver stiletto heels that likely added four inches to her already impressive height.

And she had curves for days.

As though sensing him watching her, she looked right at him. His breath caught as their eyes met. For an instant, he was lost in a sea of azure blue. Nothing else existed.

Her red lips rose in a sultry smile before she turned back to the group beside her. The loss of her attention brought Callan’s surroundings back into focus in a snap. The music once again pulsed around him. The movement of bodies on the dance floor shifted, disrupting his view of the bar. His lungs finally freed themselves.

Christian leaned closer as though trying to figure out where Callan was staring. When he figured it out, he observed, “They’re already with those two guys.”

Callan shook his head as though waking from a trance. What the hell?

Christian’s comment had him more closely observing the group with the mystery woman as they came back into view across the dance floor. To her right was a blonde female whose face was just beyond Callen’s line of sight. She had an appealing profile, though. She was at least six inches shorter than her companion and was much more animated, waving the hand that wasn’t holding a drink as she spoke with one of the two men standing with them.

The guy the shorter female was talking to was an inch or two shorter than Callan’s mystery woman. The second was about her height. Both of the men had the look of office drones out celebrating casual Friday a day early. They were dressed similarly in jeans and untucked button-down collared shirts, their hair laden with so much styling gel that Callan saw it from across the room.

He took a few minutes to observe the group as he finished his drink. It didn’t take him long to realize something that made him smile.

His mystery woman was winging for her friend.

He saw it in how she continually redirected attention to her friend. If there was a lull in the conversation, she said something to get things moving again. She was studying her friend and watching for cues to decide whether she should extricate them or make an effort to give her friend some privacy with one of the men.

But she was breaking one of the cardinal rules of winging, Callan thought: never outshine the person you’re winging for.

“What about that group?” Christian asked, pointing to the table of women who had been watching them since they stopped walking around the room.

Callan looked from the table back to his mystery woman. She turned and once again met his gaze. Her head moved the slightest bit to her left.

His smile spread. He gave her an equally subtle nod.

“Nah,” he told Christian. “Follow me, my friend. We’re both about to get lucky.”

Author Bio:

Raine Thomas is a multiple award-winning author of bestselling romance. Known for character-driven stories that inspire the imagination, Raine has signed with multiple award-winning producer Chase Chenowith of Back Fence Productions to bring her popular Daughters of Saraqael trilogy to the big screen. She's a proud indie author who is living the dream.

Raine is a hopeless romantic with a background in the fields of mental health and wedding planning...two areas that intersect far more than one would think. Her years working with children and young adults with emotional and behavioral challenges inspired her to create protagonists who overcome their own conflicts. When she isn't writing or glued to e-mail or social networking sites, Raine can usually be found vacationing with her husband and daughter on one of Florida's beautiful beaches or crossing the border to visit with her Canadian friends and relatives.

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Friday, October 15, 2021

BLEEDING SOULS SAVED BY LOVE! Kiss the Devil by Linzi Bassett NOW LIVE!

 KISS THE DEVIL by Linzi Bassett


Vito Vitale had only the withered remnants of a soul long since torn open and defiled. What little remained was charred black and empty. He lived in a dark world of his own design where cruelty, murder and violence were variations of the same theme—a dystopian melody repeated like a fugal subject and all of it conducted by the maestro, himself.

Scorpionic energy combined with the dispassionate inclinations of a sociopath, everything was transactional. People were used as commodities to achieve an end result. He had no time for weaklings— inconsequential elements disposed of like trash. All that mattered was what benefited him. He’d gotten what he’d been after his entire life and as the Capo di Tutti Capi nel Mondo of the Costa Nostra he had it all … and feared no one.

Except loneliness.

Now, due to a twist of fate, his life was about to take a new direction. Marriage had never been an option but to keep the drug cartel in check, it was the best solution to invest—by marrying the drug lord’s daughter. Finding her asleep in his office sealed her fate. She unleashed a hunger to kiss those pouty lips, awakening her from slumber and claiming her as his wife.

She shouldn’t have fallen asleep on his sofa.

Consequences be damned.

It was time to wake her with a kiss.

➙➙➙PLEASE VOTE for Kiss the Devil in Goodreads Most Anticipated Romance Releases of October:

Thursday, October 14, 2021

BOOK BLITZ: For the Strange and Surprising by M.F. Adele #GIVEAWAY

For the Strange and Surprising: Where the Mongrels Are
M.F. Adele
(Where They Are, #1)
Publication date: August 27th 2021
Genres: Adult, Reverse Harem, Romance, Science Fiction

I’m a catastrophe waiting to happen—I always have been.

When a waterspout drops me on the shores of a seemingly deserted island, I soon realize that I’m not on Earth, and I’m not alone.

This new world is full of dangers, from sea monsters and feuding tribes to poisonous food and beasts that lurk in the shadows. None of those things are as dangerous as the Mongrel men appointed to guard and teach me.

All I want to do is go home, but the island has no intentions of letting me leave.

I’ll be forced to interact with total strangers to survive this perilous land surrounded by treacherous waters.

My dreams of happiness sink into the dark depths below as I struggle to save myself from certain death.

The Mongrels will learn that fear makes a person reckless.

My name is Adelaide Storm.
But they’ll call me Ada Stormbrave.

Goodreads / Amazon


I just grin at him, unable to find a single care about what he thinks of me or where I came from. He’ll figure out that I’m not lying when I leave, when I finally get to go home.

“Could you find it in your heart to do one last, tiny favor for me?” I ask in a sullen voice, making sure my eyes are slightly downcast.

I see Talodus smile while shaking his head, so I know that he sees through me.

“What’s that?” Ecaeris questions dismissively, ready to throw me out as soon as he can.

“Would you kindly check the beach where the guards found me? I left something important there.”

His brows pinch together, not following why I would ask for that. “And what should I be looking for exactly?”

“Any of the fucks I could have given you. I feel like I had more when I started swimming toward the shore earlier.”

The prince glares at me, and I shrug.

“If they aren’t on the beach, then they probably sank somewhere in the hundreds of yards that I had to swim to get to land. You’re more than welcome to check with the huge fucking octopus that was chasing me, too.”

Author Bio:

M.F. Adele resides in the outskirts of the Rocket City in Alabama. She lives in her overactive imagination, often fueled by caffeine and no sleep. When she isn’t writing, M.F. is outdoors with her family, obsessing over spicy margaritas and cigars, or reading books by her favorite authors.

If you’re looking for M.F. Adele, you can find her on social media in her group:

M.F. Adele's Hellacious Hybrids.

M.F. loves to interact with her readers, hear character theories, and share embarrassing stories.

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NEW RELEASE BL!TZ: The Devil's Necromancer by Alexa Piper #GIVEAWAY

The Devil’s Necromancer
Alexa Piper
(Hellbound, #1)
Published by: Changeling Press
Publication date: October 8th 2021
Genres: Adult, LGBTQ+, Urban Fantasy

Lionel, a necromancer and consultant for the Brunswick Police Department, wants nothing to do with immortals. Specifically, he wants nothing to do with Lucifer, who shows up on his doorstep one day with a ridiculous proposal. Lucifer, also known as the Devil, wants Lionel to be his pretend boyfriend. Except the pretend part is something the Devil doesn’t really seem to care for.

Lucifer has read enough romance novels to know that a good dose of forced proximity might be just the thing to get the stubborn necromancer he desires into his bed. The Devil’s plans are soon complicated when Lionel proves more uncooperative and oblivious to love than Lucifer could ever anticipate.

While the Devil wants to claim Lionel, all Lionel wants is to get away from Lucifer. Meanwhile, magic users are being murdered in the city. Lionel cannot escape the implications of those murders for long, and the case soon takes a different turn. Will Lionel be able to escape the Devil’s thrall, or will the necromancer fall for the immortal seducer?

Publisher’s Note: The Devil’s Necromancer contains scenes involving dubious consent that some readers may find offensive.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo


It was past midnight, and the stars that looked like sprinkles of white chocolate in the velvety dark night sky were overshadowed by the city lights and the waxing moon. I lay on the embankment, North Bridge’s metal frame rising just to my right and further hiding the chocolate sprinkle stars. My feet were wet, but I didn’t mind, not the embankment or the wet feet or the stars melting away in the light and the artificial structures around me. The zombie was oozing all over me from its — his — caved-in skull, and I did mind that. Zombie ooze was a bitch to get out of clothes, even if I’d given up on wearing colors years ago. Black simply was the safest bet for a necromancer.

Zombies reeked when they weren’t really fresh, and this one was ripe — fish-market-in-the-summer-heat-three-days-after-closing ripe. I looked up and considered my life choices, all of which had led me here.

“Do you need CPR?” someone said. It was a warm, manly voice, and I was reasonably sure it could make chocolate melt, star-shaped or otherwise.

I stuffed my self-pity away and turned my head to get a better look at the speaker. He was as handsome as a devil, with skin that looked like marble in the glow of the city at night. His hair shimmered liquid black, but it might have been some shade of brown in proper lighting. It went well past his ears and looked styled with care to get that messy, I just got up out of bed after a night of hard fucking look.

“Why the fuck would I need CPR?” I asked. My voice didn’t sound like I’d just considered crying a moment ago, and I was proud of that.

The guy shrugged. “It’s hard to tell with humans. Your kind is so accident prone, and you seem to be having trouble breathing. Or maybe you hit your head? Do you remember how you got here?”

Did he fucking think I was suffering from amnesia or a head injury or something? “I’m having trouble breathing because I have a fucking dead zombie on my chest, asshat,” I said. In my considered necromantic opinion, I was being perfectly polite, even though I couldn’t be sure what kind of creature the guy was. I’d given him a quick glance with my mage sight, and human he was not.

Jeez, I hated gods and otherworldly beings.

“All zombies are dead,” Mr. Sexy said. “It’s a prerequisite. This one seems to have had its brainstem properly destroyed, however.”

“Oh, smarty-pants, thanks a bunch for the lecture. The basics of necromancy have ever escaped me, even after I raised my very first corpse thirteen fucking years ago.” It had been a blackbird that had died when he crashed into a window at my school. I had cradled the poor thing in my hands as it breathed its last, had cried, and that had triggered my necromancer power. Pretty boy did not need to know that. Every other person I’d ever told had made fun of me for it.

“You could have suffered a head injury with amnesia. How am I supposed to know what you know?” He walked toward me. His movements were silent, cat-like, and more elegant than was right. Even despite the zombie oozing out on me, my cock couldn’t quite ignore him. Seriously, though, what was up with his fixation on first aid and amnesia?

He grabbed the zombie by the legs and pulled the dead-dead corpse off me. “Oh. You caved in its skull with a rock,” he said when he saw the murder weapon in question, the goo glistening on its stony surface. Well, it wasn’t really a murder weapon, seeing as how the zombie had been dead, but details. “How traditional.” He held out a hand to me, and I took it and let him pull me back to my feet. “I’m Lucy, by the way. Short for Lucifer, but I prefer Lucy. As in Lucy Westenra, the woman who almost single-handedly turned Dracula into the first reverse harem romance novel ever before she made the wise decision to claim immortality instead. She was such an underrated character, and I really don’t know why people don’t like her more.”

I dusted myself off. Didn’t help with the wet feet or the zombie ooze, which I really only distributed, like soft butter on hot toast. The shirt I was wearing was ruined. Good thing I had a dozen other plain black shirts just like it back home. “Maybe because she fucking ate children.”

He shrugged. “Well, everyone has a craving now and then. No one judges women’s monthly chocolate cravings, and I don’t see how that was so much worse.”

My brain caught up with the conversation. Lucifer? The Lucifer? The fucking Morning Star, seducer of stuffy virgins and lover of apples? I looked at him. Up at him. Asshole was tall and handsome, the kind of guy I could only ever talk to with about three drinks in me. “You’re the Devil? Satan? Beelzebub?”

“Lu-cy,” he said, slowing down as if he was reconsidering the brain damage thing. Even his eyebrows were perfect, which I only noticed because he pulled one of those up, something most people couldn’t do in real life. He could. And he looked hot doing it. Hotter.

Author Bio:

Alexa Piper writes steamy romance that ranges from light to dark, from straight to queer. She’s also a coffee addict. Alexa loves writing stories that make her readers laugh and fall in love with the characters in them.

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Wednesday, October 13, 2021

B@@K REVEAL: Alluring Darkness by Nelly Alikyan #PreORDER

Alluring Darkness
Nelly Alikyan
(Whittle Magic, #1)
Publication date: November 30th 2021
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance

Can three new witches find their mother’s murderer?

Vera’s always been alone.
With her father gone, she’s left completely on her own until the magic in her finds a book of spells that takes her to two younger sisters she never knew she had.

Camilla loves her life the way it is.
But then she finds out she has another older sister, and with that sister comes the revelation that the supernatural world is real, meaning Camilla will have to leave her old life of being a normal human behind.

Maya’s always been into the darker side of life.
So finding out she’s a witch? Exciting. Unlike the hesitancy her baby sister holds at leaving her normal life behind, Maya is ready to jump all in.

The girls must now navigate this new supernatural world that comes with a warlock mentor, attacks from—attractive?—demons, and the possibility of romances that just may not be allowed.

And worse off, their mother’s death may not have been a natural accident, but a result of an attack from the supernatural world.

Add to Goodreads / Pre-order

Author Bio:

Nelly Alikyan was born and raised in the Los Angeles Valley, then moved to Boston for university and stayed there. Her favorite city in the world is London and if given the option, would choose to travel there 11/10.

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NEW RELEASE BL!TZ: Daddy's Stowaway by Rogue London #GIVEAWAY

Daddy’s Stowaway
Rogue London
Publication date: October 8th 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Suspense

Stealing a first class ticket was a risk, but it was one I couldn’t afford not to take. Worst case scenario, I’d sit in airport jail for a while and then try again, right?


The man I stole from isn’t just any first class passenger. Turns out, he owns the whole damn airline.

And now he owns me.

For the next eighteen hours, I earn my passage through humiliating punishments that leave me begging for more. And for a moment, I allow myself to believe it won’t end when we land in Tahiti. But there is nowhere I can go where my past won’t find me, and when it does, Daddy is the only one who can save me.

The only question is, will he still want me once he learns the truth about why I ran?

Goodreads / Amazon


I splashed water on my face and took some deep breaths. Feeling better, I opened the door and almost

ran into Alexander, who was waiting on the other side.

“Oh, uh sorry, I’ll get out of your way.” I tried to slip past him, but he gripped my arm.

“As I said, I punish naughty girls, and you, my little stowaway, are very naughty indeed. Back inside, it’s

time for your spanking. I fully plan on you feeling my displeasure for the next eighteen hours.” I was so shocked I didn’t know what to say.

Alexander’s words sent a spike of desire through me, and I know my body gave me away because he was grinning like the Cheshire cat in Alice in Wonderland at my reaction. He turned me around and gently pushed me back through the doorway.

“But, but, uh, I could pay you back?” I was scrambling for a way out, humiliated by the idea of being punished like a child.

“I don’t need your money; besides I know you don’t have any, or else why steal a ticket? Do you even know where Tahiti is? What type of world you’re flying into?” He turned us to face the mirror as he spoke. Alexander stood nearly a foot taller than me, and his face was visible above mine. I noticed several things at once, the height difference between us, his gorgeous but determined look, and my flaming red cheeks, along with my dilated pupils. My panties were wet, and as he pinned me in front of him, his hard length pressed into my back.

I felt like I was watching a movie and was fascinated by the two main characters—us. Alexander’s eyes were almost the same color as his pre-flight drink, amber, and could shift from soft to hard in a nanosecond. His eyes weren’t the only noteworthy thing about his face. He had a chiseled jawline, and his thick brown hair was swept back, giving him a no-nonsense image. And his mouth… while he had beautiful lips, they were currently turned slightly downwards in a disapproving manner. If his body language was created to make me squirm, it was working. I felt like the naughty girl he accused me of being.

“What are you running from, Toni?”

Author Bio:

Rogue London is an author of naughty romance designed to awaken your sensual side.

Rogue has a flair for writing about the D/s dynamic and as a true romantic at heart, her books have an HEA.

Check out her first, Daddy's Brat Series

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