Spotlight & Giveaway: A Time for Loving by Nico Jaye

A Time for Loving by Nico Jaye - CoverTitle & Author: A Time for Loving by Nico Jaye
Release Date: October 23, 2014
Publisher: Self-Published
Length: 6,565 words

Lately, I’ve really been digging historical M/M romances – there’s just something so touching about a story in which two men meet and fall in love despite facing societal norms that make their love taboo (if not outright illegal). It’s the ultimate “love conquers all” and I adore them! So, when I heard that one of my favourite authors of contemporary smuff (that’s smutty fluff to you laymen) was trying her hand at a historical short, I couldn’t WAIT to get my hot little hands on it.

Check out the book blurb and excerpt below and then make sure to enter the amazing giveaway at the bottom of the post for  a chance to win 1 ebook copy of A Time for Loving and a pretty ring with the word “love” on it!

C’mon now, you know you wanna… 😉

Book Blurb (from Goodreads):

Jack and Christopher have made it through years of campaigning and the horrors of Waterloo together—side by side by day and, by night, in each other’s arms. After the war is over, however, will the love shared between this batman and his officer survive when Christopher returns to the life of a gentleman?

Want a Taste? Check out this excerpt:

When Christopher returned to the bedchamber at the time the clock ticked its way past midnight, Jack was waiting for him. As was their routine, they locked the doors to bar any unwanted nightly visitors, such a practice explained to the household as a way to deter Christopher’s childhood habit of sleepwalking.

Little did they know he’d outgrown such an inclination years ago.

“A pleasant evening,” Christopher said mildly over his shoulder as Jack assisted him out of his well-fitted navy evening jacket.

“Was it?” Jack murmured in response. Setting aside the garment onto the clothes valet, he turned to face Christopher’s back and skimmed his hands over his shoulders. His palms, forever callused from years of campaigning, nevertheless picked up the texture of the silver-embroidered brocade waistcoat. Those shoulders were broad, carrying with them the weight of responsibility—for their regiment, for their secret, for their future—well beyond Christopher’s twenty-three years.

Lost in his thoughts, Jack startled when Christopher turned around to grasp his wrist gently. He looked up into Christopher’s familiar gaze and sighed, his heart settling into place even as his pulse began to race at the sight of the heat in those blue depths.

“It would have been much more pleasant with your company, Jack,” Christopher said, his voice warm and low.

With a hard swallow, Jack smiled up into that precious face. Tilting his head, he listened for a moment and heard the sounds of the house going to sleep around them.

This was their time—the time between days when they could be lost in their world.

“You know ’tis impossible, Christopher,” Jack whispered regretfully, searching his gaze. Jack moved to clasp his hand, drawing Christopher’s palm to his neck and curling it against the skin there. Leaning into the touch, Jack closed his eyes briefly before glancing up again. “But our time is now, and my company is yours. Yours always.”

When Christopher’s gaze dropped to his lips, Jack moved forward, touching their mouths to each other lightly…

About the Author:

NicoNico Jaye is a fan of all things HEA and has dragged her romance collection along for her moves from San Francisco to Los Angeles to Chicago to New York and back. She thinks reading is awesome and loves that she can hang out night after night with crinoline-wearing debutantes, brawny firemen in suspenders, and werewolf shifters with Scottish brogues. An overall feline enthusiast, Nico secretly (or not so secretly?) adores Hello Kitty, cat GIFs, spontaneous traveling, pretending to be crafty, emoticons, hot menfolk, and parenthetical statements (not necessarily in that order).

Website: http://nicojaye.blogspot.ca/
Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5840673.Nico_Jaye  
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/nicojaye
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nicolovesbooks
Tumblr: http://nicojaye.tumblr.com/

GIVEAWAY

Three lucky winners will receive an ebook copy of A Time for Loving and a pretty ring with the word “love” inscribed on it. To enter, press the Rafflecopter logo & follow the directions!  The giveaway will run from October 23rd to November 6th.

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Can’t wait another second to read A Time for Loving?
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Most Anticipated Reads: April

Well. It’s that time of month again . . .

The moment where we state what books that we, with all good intentions, plan on reading, or in the very least attempt to. Sometimes we succeed, and other times we fail (and when I say we, I mean me, Runell, because someone was a good little trooper and actually read all the books that she said she was going to for the month of March, whereas I only read one).

It’s a good thing we’re not given any gold stars because I would be more than just slightly lacking.

*Sniffs indignantly* Whatever. I don’t need anyone’s gold stars. I’m my own person.

*Mutters* I really want those goddamn gold stars . . .

Runell’s 3 Most Anticipated Books of April 2014:

1. Mark Cooper versus America by Lisa Henry and J.A. Rock: I’ve had my eye on this for quite sometime now, even before it was Mark Cooper versus America released back at the end of January, but no matter how much I wanted to read it, I wasn’t really in the mood for it.

I’m in the mood for it now. In fact, I have been for the last few weeks, but since it was chosen for me for a challenge that kicks off in April, I couldn’t touch it until then. As I’m writing this, I’m merely thirty-eight minutes away from it officially being April 1st. That challenge I was talking about? Yeah, it’s a challenge that goes on for three months, so it starts at the first of April and ends on July 31, and within those three months it’s my goal to finish as many of the sixty-two books (yes, 62) that were chosen for me.

And this will be the first one that I read. I’m determined that it will be.

Also, I’m really looking forward to all the naughty glory that I’ve heard about in this book. I know someone’s got a little lace (?) fetish, I believe, and someone (note, I’m not aware of who these someone’s are) likes to be spanked? I’m pretty sure I read that in a review somewhere… At least I hope I did because hello!

2. Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander #2) by Diana Gabaldon: If you happen to follow me on Goodreads (and if you don’t, maybe you should because then you get to see me in all my .gif glory), then you would be aware, very aware, that I read Outlander in six days (and I would’ve finished it sooner but those last two days as I closed in on the last one hundred pages, I didn’t want to finish it because I didn’t Dragonfly in Amberhave Dragonfly on hand), and absolutely loved it. Claire, I’m pretty sure, is my favorite female character ever now, and I want to marry Jamie sooo bad.

I’ve always been attracted to darker men (tall, dark, and handsome: yes, yes, and yes), and have pretty much never found blonde and red heads appealing (I pretty much figure it’s because I’m so fair myself and hate it), but Jamie is one red-headed Scotsman that I would love to do very, very wicked things with.

Just sayin’ . . .

So, the quicker I can back to Jamie the better. (Also as a very brief side note, my favorite color ever is orange, and my hardback copy of this book is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen. Seriously.)

3. Only Love by Garrett Leigh: I don’t really know what to say about this one other then, GIMME, GIMME, GIMME. I read Slide and Marked by Garrett Leigh and absolutely fell in loveOnly Love with Pete and Ash and the way my heart was ripped out of my chest, thrown into the dirt and squashed repeatedly, then picked up and placed back into my chest cavity and given a nice little, there, there pat at the end.

Apparently, I’m a masochist.

At least in the hands of Garrett Leigh.

And just by the blurb alone, I know I’m going to be in masochistic heaven . . . Or is hell?

Catherine’s 3 Most Anticipated Books of April 2014:

1. The Boyfriend Mandate (The Boyfriend Chronicles #2) by River Jaymes:  Last year, I fell in love with River’s first full-length M/M romance novel, The Backup Boyfriend. As far as I was concerned, the book was pure perfection – perfect characters, perfect plot, perfect pacing, perfect dialogue, and a perfectly believable gay-for-you romance. (It probably also doesn’t hurt that it’s been four months and I still can’t think about motor oil without needing to take a cold shower.) *fans flushed face*

April marks the much, much anticipated release of the second book in the series. As of this moment, there’s no cover, no book blurb, and no firm release date. And yet, I still want to read it more than a man lost in the desert wants a tall, ice-cold glass of water. That is the power of the auto-buy author, folks. River Jaymes… she’s just that good.

Vaughn & Boehme Cover2. Wood, Screws, & Nails by Piper Vaughn and Kade Boehme: Vaughn’s books were some of the first that I read in the M/M romance genre and she has quickly become one of my go-to authors. I know that her books will always be sweet, sexy, and have just enough angst to give the book’s climax an emotional punch. Boehme, on the other hand, is one of my most recent discoveries; I read – and loved – Trouble & the Wallflower last month. I found his characters familiar, yet fresh, and the book’s ending bittersweet, but authentic.

When I learned that the two were collaborating on a book about a sexy contractor falling in love with his son’s best friend…? Ha! Sliding it to the top of my TBR mountain for April became a no-brainer (mostly because my brain is now filled with construction-themed sexual innuendo).

NR Cover3. Shadow Spell (The Cousins O’Dwyer Trilogy #2) by Nora Roberts: *sigh* I heart Nora Roberts books. As the first romance author I ever read, she’ll always have a special place in my heart. That’s why, even though I almost never read M/F romance novels anymore, I am dying to read the next book in the Cousins O’Dwyer Trilogy. It’s set in Ireland, has witchy themes, and revolves around a gaggle of sexy men and strong, smart women kicking evil’s proverbial ass. Let’s be real: it’s like the perfect recipe for everything Roberts does best.

Spotlight & Giveaway: Normal Enough by Marie Sexton

Normal Enough CoverTitle: Normal Enough
Author:
 Marie Sexton
Release Date: March 16, 2014
Publisher: Amber Allure
Length: 24,000 words

Mind. Blown.

Apparently Marie Sexton – the same author that wrote the sweet twisted fairy tale, Cinder: A CinderFella Story, that I loved so much a few weeks ago – is now writing muscle car kink.

I need it! I wants it! I gotsta have it NOW! *flails*

Check out the blurb below and then make sure to enter the amazing giveaway at the bottom of the post for  a chance to win an e-copy of Normal Enough AND a $50 gift card for All-Romance!

Book Blurb (from Goodreads):

When Brandon Kenner shows up at Kasey Ralston’s garage with a 1970 Chevelle SS 454, Kasey is smitten by both the man and his car. Between what Kasey considers a shameful fetish and his long estrangement from his family, Kasey finds it easiest to be alone, even distancing himself from his coworkers. But Brandon doesn’t think Kasey’s fetish is weird. In fact, he likes it.

Kasey doesn’t know how to resist a man as charming as Brandon, and he’s more than willing to be seduced. But what are Brandon’s long-term intentions? Kasey is afraid of hoping for too much, but equally afraid that when all is said and done, Brandon will leave, and Kasey will be left alone once again.

About the Author:

marieheadshot 2Marie Sexton lives in Colorado.  She’s a fan of just about anything that involves muscular young men piling on top of each other.  In particular, she loves the Denver Broncos and enjoys going to the games with her husband.  Her imaginary friends often tag along.  Marie has one daughter, two cats, and one dog, all of whom seem bent on destroying what remains of her sanity.  She loves them anyway.

Website: http://mariesexton.net/
Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/MarieSexton
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/MarieSexton
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/MarieSexton.author
Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/msextonauthor/

GIVEAWAY

Enter (press the Rafflecopter logo) to win an ebook copy of “Normal Enough” and a$50 ARe gift certificate for some of Marie Sexton’s backlist books. Click on the link below to enter. Giveaway closes March 25, 2014 at 12:00a.m.

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Can’t wait a week to find out if you won the giveaway!?
Purchase Normal Enough NOW from Amber Allure.

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Most Anticipated Reads: March

It’s March! This means it’s time for another round of Catherine and Runell’s 3 Most Anticipated Reads of the Month (or, as I like to call it: the-tiniest-TBR-pile-in-history-that-can-still-defeat-us). For those of you keeping track at home, the stats from last month’s 3 Most Anticipated broke down like this:

Catherine – 2          TBR Pile – 1
Runell – 2                TBR Pile – 1

Not too shabby. But, as my childhood reports cards used to say under the grades for Environmental Studies and Science, it “needs improvement.” With that goal in mind, here are the books that we each most hope to read this month:

Catherine’s 3 Most Anticipated Books of March 2014:

???????????????????????????????????????1. Ball & Chain (Cut & Run #8) by Abigail Roux: When Ball & Chain is released on March 17th, my guess is that a significant number of Ty & Zane fans are going to find themselves coming down with a mysterious 24-hour bug that keeps them from going into work. I can hear the fake coughing and over-acted sick calls already. But who can blame them?! We have been waiting for this book for months.

After the emotional wringer Abi Roux put her readers through with Touch & Geaux, and an unexpected deployment that kept our two favourite men apart for far too long (in other words, any time at all), I think we’re all just ready to see Ty & Zane back together again. And Ball & Chain has a wedding! And Scotland! And murder and mayhem and sex and feels! I. Can’t. Wait.

Forget day-drinking, I know what I’m going to be doing on St. Patrick’s Day!

Slide Cover2. Slide (Roads #1) by Garrett Leigh: Last month I won copies of Slide (Roads #1) and Marked (Roads #1.5) from the author as she was promoting the release of the second full-length novel in this series, Rare. I wanted to read them immediately, but you know how it is – I go to queue up Slide on my Kindle, something shiny distracts me, and next thing I know, a week has passed and I’ve read five other books in its place.

Well, not this month. This month I am reading it. A) because that cover is killing me (in a good way – it is FIERCE!), b) because the author’s blurb pushed all the right buttons for me (so much angsty goodness!), and C) because everyone I know who has read this says it’s amazing and can’t shut up about the chemistry between Ash and Pete. I need to read this book. I need to know these characters!

Floodgates Cover3. Floodgates by Mary Calmes: I read Frog by Mary Calmes in January and adored it. Weber was one of the dreamiest main characters I had ever come across and the story was one that stuck with me long after I finished the last page. It has turned into one of my favourite books in the genre, and one that’s always on the tip of my tongue when someone asks me for an M/M recommendation.

It’s my hope that Calmes’ newest novel, Floodgates, will have this same magic. By the sounds of the book’s blurb, this novel is going to have off-the-charts UST (Unrelieved Sexual Tension) and I am looking forward to every single moment of it. Plus, my dear friends on Goodreads are planning a massive Buddy Read of the book on March 3rd. I was already looking forward to reading the book, but reading it with a dozen of my closest friends and fellow bibliophiles?! Even better.

Runell’s 3 Most Anticipated Books of March 2014:

1. Ball & Chain (Cut & Run #8) by Abigail Roux: This is guaranteed. It will be devoured. No doubt about it. And after I’m done, the waiting commences for Cross & Crown in June and whenever the ninth (and possibly final?) Ty and Zane book. *Sigh* The life of a fangirl.

I’m just so freaking excited . . . As any Ty & Zane fan are.

Abi’s minion torture will come to a conclusion . . . or rather her torture of this kind will be put to an end. And then our torture, the kind that only minions can do, will really begin. We’ll wonder if we should take things as they appear to be, or if we should second guess everything. Most likely, it’ll always be the latter when it comes to Abigail Roux because she likes to keep us thinking, always guessing, driving ourselves insane.

2. Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover: I’m a huge Colleen Hoover fan, and I’ve been dying to read her latest novel, which Maybe Somedaycomes out March 18. The difference with this one is that she partnered with Griffin Peterson, who is the face of Losing Hope and was also on an American Idol (no, I do not watch the show), and as the story is about two songwriters, all the songs in the book are written by Griffin who also recorded a soundtrack of the songs. Apparently, when you get to a certain part where a song comes in, if you have the ebook there will be a link that takes you to a website that will play the song and if you have the paperback there will be a barcode thingy that you scan with your phone which will then take you to the website and will play the song.

Awesome? I think so too.

Three songs have already been released, and they are simply amazing. The CD will be released March 4, and I highly suggest that you do yourself a favor and pick it up. Along with the book too, of course.

The Return3. The Return by Brad Boney: Having read The Nothingness of Ben by Brad Boney, and thoroughly enjoying it, I’ve been itching to get to the sequel/companion novel (one of the main characters in The Return is mentioned in The Nothingness . . .) ever since I read the synopsis and saw the magic words Bruce Springsteen. Guys . . . I love me some Bruce Springsteen. ALSO! It’s GFY. *Squeals*

I didn’t do too hot last month when it came to hopefully getting around to my most anticipated. I started off to, and then something else would catch my eye, and then I’d start on that. In my defense, however, I didn’t get anywhere near the amount of reading done that I wanted to get done, so hopefully in March I’ll do just that.

We told you about our most anticipated books of March 2014, now we want to hear from you! Please leave us a comment below telling us about the book you are most looking forward to reading this month.

Review: Being Chase by J.J. Scotts

Being Chase CoverTitle & Author: Being Chase by J.J. Scotts
Series: Chase (#1)
Release Date: February 24, 2014
Publisher: Self-published
Pages:  unknown pages

Book Blurb (from Goodreads):

Wouldn’t it be nice to be a celebrity?

Liam Collins is desperate for a job. Forced to jump to the big city, he can’t believe his luck when he suddenly gets an offer from a prestigious publishing company. Absolutely ecstatic, Liam doesn’t even bother reading the details. But on his first day of work, he isn’t ushered to a quaint cubicle. Instead, he’s brought to a classy high-rise and told that he’s been hired to be the face of the best-selling author, Chase Preston.

When Liam first meets Chase, he’s so captivated by the mysterious man’s imposing figure and deep-set eyes. Maybe Liam really did get lucky.

All Liam has to do is go to fan meetings and award events as a stand-in for Chase. It actually doesn’t sound bad, but Liam soon realizes that being with Chase is harder than it appears. Despite the challenges of Chase’s arrogant attitude, Liam puts up with it. What he finds difficult to put up with is Chase’s sexy body and brilliant blue eyes.

Even worse, the feeling may be mutual.

Our Thoughts:

*À la Etta James* At last . . . our first official Buddy Review! And to help us mark the special occasion, we have the first book in a series, Being Chase by J.J. Scotts. Ecstatic to get a chance to read the ARC copies that would be sent to us in exchange for an honest review, we both said yes (honestly though, how could we have said no to the excerpt that was provided?It was a good one!).

Below are our thoughts on the book, which in short, boils down to that you need to read the first book because this series reads like it’s going to be really fun. And hot. And sexy. And . . . well, you get the picture.

Runell: Overall, I enjoyed it, but I did have some issues with it. Issues that could totally just be me, or issues that could have bugged you too. What’d you think?

Catherine: *laughs* Maybe it’s because I’m currently going through the soul-crushing experience of trying to find a job in my field, but Being Chase had me at “hello.” Unfortunately, as much as I found myself relating to Liam in those first few pages, the overall experience of reading this novella ran hot and cold for me; there were aspects to it that I really enjoyed and others that I felt just didn’t work.

I don’t know about you, but when I’m reading a book, the main characters make or break a story for me. They need to be engaging and authentic and it never hurts if their chemistry together is off the charts. I loved that Being Chase had two very polar opposite characters with very distinct voices. What’d you think of Chase and Liam?

Runell: One of the issues that I had with the story was with Liam himself. The way he talked, the way he acted seemed . . . juvenile. Perhaps, the whole “I’m a small town guy” was played off of a little too heavily. In some ways, he just felt very meek and young to me – much younger than the 27 year old that he is supposed to be.

Catherine: Exactly! I felt like there were moments in the story in which Liam was sweet and honest and refreshing, but most of the time I felt like he was characterized as weak, immature, and . . . dare I say it? Feminine. Don’t get me wrong, not every character needs to be an alpha or charmingly arrogant, but I don’t want them to be a doormat either. I just felt that Liam went along with the crazy demands and atrocious treatment for far too long. I kept thinking, “surely he’s going to say enough is enough now, right?!” after each incident but he never did. Well, until . . .

Runell: Yes, yes, yes! Until! But let’s save that discussion for a little later. Personally, I thought that the voice for Chase was much stronger and self-assured. I liked it, but whereas Liam seemed so much younger than his age, Chase seemed far older than his.

Catherine: I picked up on that too, but I felt that it was authentic to his character. Chase is supposed to be this pampered, independent, talented guy who has been largely on his own for years before we meet him, so it made sense to me that he came across as more worldly and experienced than Liam.  That said, there wasn’t a lot that was likable about Chase in this short story. In fact, the man is an arrogant prick. I don’t necessarily say that as a criticism; I actually think a lot of readers are going to love Chase’s bad boy persona and I think Scotts writes this character particularly well. I know we’ll get more info about Chase and his history in the next story, so I’m trying to reserve judgement, but I gotta say that as of right now I think the man’s a straight up jerk.

Runell: You’re right. There doesn’t seem to be too much to like about Chase, but I am holding out for the idea that I will like him too. And regardless of the fact that you think Chase is a jerk, you can’t deny that those two scenes with Chase and Liam being . . . “intimate” were hot. I definitely liked those! 

Catherine: Ooooh buddy! J.J. Scotts does the steamy really, really well. I practically had to roll my tongue back into my mouth after that first scene. *fans face vigorously*

I think the thing that bothered me most about this novella was the lack of interaction between the two main characters – especially given their molten hot chemistry together. I understand that this is only the first in a series and that Scotts needed to establish context for the two characters to meet (so she’s earned some leeway from me for that), but Chase doesn’t even enter the story until 30% of the way through and then they only have two or three more scenes together. I guess I was just hoping that Liam would spend less time with secondary characters and more time with Chase talking, flirting, butting heads, and ramping up all that delicious sexual tension between the two of them. 

Runell: The lack of interaction between Liam and Chase didn’t necessarily bother me. I don’t know why exactly, it just didn’t, though I do agree with you there should have been more of it. One of the biggest issues that I had with the story was the whole “we control your life thing”. Uh . . . no, you don’t. I know that the job required him to be low key and to not really draw too much attention to himself as he is “the face” of Chase Preston, but everyone felt way too controlling and heavy handed for my taste. I mean… the thing with the cellphone?

Catherine: Ugh! The thing with the cellphone. *groan*

Okay then, I have to ask: what was your favourite part of the novella?

Runell: I got really excited when Liam punched Chase because it felt like he was finally standing up for himself.

Catherine: Oh my God! I loved when Liam punched Chase! It was like . . . BAM! No one likes a cock tease! Liam definitely got his man card for the first time in the story.

Runell: Yes. That’s exactly what Liam got when he punched Chase. His man card.

Catherine: *laughs* I think we may be taking an unholy amount of glee in Liam going all Evander Holyfield on our second leading man.

Runell: Yeah, but Chase can take it. 🙂

I also felt that her slide into the NA novel near the end was some of her strongest writing. It was weird and it did throw me off guard, but it was a lot stronger than a lot of the actual story was.

Catherine: Huh. The slide into Chase’s NA novel annoyed me. I agree that it was some of her strongest writing, and I actually think that it would make a really successful NA series, but I thought that it was a solid 3-5 pages that Scotts could have chopped in order to add a scene between Liam and Chase that would have heightened that sexual tension I was looking for. 

Runell: Yeah, I hear you.

Overall, as the first part in what is supposed to be a “serial”, it’s a fairly stable foundation in which, hopefully, will only prove to grow stronger and more firm with each book. Though I’m hoping against hope that the reason why Liam was hired to be Chase’s face was not because of his scar. If it is the reason, however, I do believe that has got to be one of the most shallowest story plot devices ever used. Just sayin’ . . . Damn that “cliff hanger” though.

Catherine: Okay, I know my review of Being Chase hasn’t been the most glowing I’ve ever written, but here’s the bottom line: I think that the series has an unique premise, the characters have excellent chemistry together, and Scotts’ writing shows great potential for improvement. After reading that damn cliffhanger, I’m totally hooked and can’t wait to see where Scotts will take these characters.

Catherine’s Rating:

2 SmoochHalf
Runell’s Rating:

1 Smooch1 Smooch1 Smooch

*A big thank you to J.J. Scotts who generously provided Runell and me ARCs of Being Chase in exchange for an honest review.

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Most Anticipated Reads: February

I think this post might as well be sub-titled “I want it! I want it NOW!”

Catherine asked, and so she received.

A raise of hands: Who here sets a TBR each month with books that they want to get to within that time frame? *Counts* Alright, now who here is a mood reader who says a big screw you to TBRs and lives by the motto: “I’ll read what I want when I damn well want to”? *Counts*

Yeah… that’s kinda what we thought.

It just so happens that both of us are mood readers. We almost never stick to our TBRs (Catherine is witness to just how quickly I change my mind about reading a book), and books that we really wanted to read – like, yesterday – are put on the back burner when we come across something newer and shinier. It’s a problem and we know it . . . we just don’t care.

Yeah, you guessed it. We’re total badasses. *Fist pump*

But despite our status as mood readers, it doesn’t stop us from hoping that a few of the books that we really want to get to are ones that fit our fickle whims each month. So, in hopes that we’ll finally stick to a TBR pile if it’s small enough, here are three books each – new and old – that we’re hoping to read in February.

Runell’s 3 Most Anticipated Reads of February 2014:

Bone Rider1. Bone Rider by J. Fally: I’m sorry, but have you ever read a cooler synopsis to a book than this one? Let me break it down for you: Riley is on the run for his life from, who he thought was, the love of his life who is actually a part of the Russian mob. An alien (I’m guessing not of the little green men variety) is running from the U.S. military because he forgot how to parallel park a spaceship (I might have paraphrased that a little bit) who stows away in Riley’s truck but then decides that the best course of action is to stow away in Riley himself. Their reluctant partnership–methinks Riley doesn’t take to kindly of the fact that his body is being used as a hideout–turns into something much more.

See! told you! Awesomeness on a level in which awesomeness had never dared to go before.

And you know when I review this baby, Star Trek .gifs will be a must. I’m warning you now.

Something Like Autumn2. Something Like Autumn by Jay Bell: Seeing as the fourth and final book in the Season series was just released, it’s time I finally put on my big girl britches and read this one. I love Jay Bell. Every single one of his works that I’ve read, I’ve loved. I know this one will be absolutely no different. The thing is, I know how the end happens for the main character in this book (he is a main character in the first two books). I was heartbroken when I read about it in Something Like Summer. I don’t know how I’m going to be able to handle it. I don’t handle angst very well. So many of my Goodreads friends thrive on the stuff, crave it, but I can only handle so much of it before I have this mental breakdown and when it comes time to review it, I can’t form words so I resort to .gifs.

Then I lay in bed with the covers pulled over my head, my knees pulled up to my chest, rock back and forth, and make a mantra out of: Why? Why? Why? . . . And no. I didn’t forget to take my medication . . . I think.

Silent3. Silent by Sara Alva: I know, I know, I know! I just got through saying that I don’t handle angst very well, and here I go wanting to read about a boy who doesn’t belong and a “special” mute boy, but I’ve been dying to read this ever since it was gifted to me this past Christmas by my Secret Santa (thank you!), and I absolutely loved Sara Alva’s Social Skills so I’m willing to risk my sanity to finally be able to say that I’ve read what looks like to be an amazing book (talk about Cover Lust).

Just don’t expect me to be very . . . sane during the times that I’m reading Something Like Autumn and Silent because I can guarantee you, that’s just not going to happen.

Catherine’s 3 Most Anticipated Reads of February 2014:

Broken Pieces Cover1. Broken Pieces by Riley Hart Broken Pieces is set to be released on February 4th, a day which also just happens to be my birthday! I don’t know about you, but I can’t think of a better way to celebrate turning 30 than with a smokin’ hot book that has not one, not two, but three sexy leading men. One for each decade, right?! 😀

I have to admit that menage books are usually hit-or-miss with me; it’s too easy for bad writing to cause them to feel cheap and dirty as opposed to sweet and steamy. I need to feel that solid, loving connection between all of my main characters. Otherwise, it totally kills the mood and ruins the book for me. Fortunately, I’ve read another book by this author (Collide – Blackcreek #1) and have faith that Ms. Hart can pull off everything I’m looking for.

The Boy Who Belonged Cover

2. The Boy Who Belonged (Boy #2) by Lisa Henry & J.A. Rock – It’s no secret that I LOVE Lisa Henry & J.A. Rock. Individually they are fantastic authors, but together those two ladies create some of the sweetest, sexiest, funniest, most fearless main characters I have ever come across in the romance genre. And it doesn’t hurt that they can write love scenes that are are so fucking hot they’ll melt your panties right off! I love that they have the ability to explore kinks that I’ve never found appealing (cross-dressing) or have found downright scary (fisting, anyone?!) in a way that challenges me to push my own boundaries regarding the way that I think about sex and intimacy. These particular kinks may never turn my crank, but Henry & Rock write in such a way that I start to understand the needs that they can fulfill for other people. And hey, we all have our kinks, so no judgement here!

But why am I looking forward to reading The Boy Who Belonged, specifically? Well, I read The Good Boy (Boy #1) and The Naughty Boy (Boy #1.5) in December 2013 and they were so frickin’ good. I fell in love with Lane’s vulnerability and Derek’s big heart and the chemistry that the two of them had together and I just want more! That’s as complicated as it gets.

Promises Cover3. Promises (Coda #1) by Marie Sexton – When I first starting reading MM Romance books, a friend gifted me a copy of this book and told me that it was hands-down one of her favourite books – and series – of all time. That is a lot of pressure to put on a book! What if I read it and didn’t like it?! I’d feel like I was letting my friend down (silly, I know, but there you have it). And so this book sat on my Kindle. And it sat. And it sat. I look at it every now and then with my finger hovering over the select button, and then at the last second, I chicken out. Well, no more chickening out! I am reading this book in February. There! It’s written on the internet for the whole world to see (and we all know that everything written on the internet is true).

What are you most looking forward to reading this month? Let us know in the comments section below.

2014 Contemporary Romance Reading Challenge

If you read our previous post, you already know that we’ve decided to join our friends at The Book Vixen for their 2014 Men in Uniform Reading Challenge (sports jerseys and lab coats and camo, oh my!). But, since both of us are pretty competitive – and we tend to read a lot – we thought we’d join their 2014 Contemporary Romance Reading Challenge as well.

(We’re not-so-secretly hoping that these challenges will help us conquer our To Be Read pile this year!)

The challenge objective is pretty simple: read at least 10 contemporary romance books between January 1 – December 31, 2014. Books can be in any format you want (hard copy, ebook, or audio) and can be written for young adult, new adult or adult adult audiences. Because love doesn’t discriminate, the main characters can be male/female, male/male, or female/female – we don’t care as long as the books make our hearts sigh. However, in order to count towards the challenge, all books must be a minimum of 100 pages and cannot contain historical, time-travel, fantasy, science fiction, or mystery/suspense/thriller elements. So, you know… no sparkly vampires allowed.

As we finish each book, we’ll add it to our individual lists on our Reading Challenge – Contemporary Romance page, let you know how many saucy smooches we gave it, and link to our reviews (if we have ’em). We’ll be updating this post regularly, so keep checking back with us!

We’d love for you to join us for the 2014 Contemporary Romance Reading Challenge! You can do this officially by signing up with The Book Vixen using the link above (and leaving us your name and details in our comments section so that we can follow your progress), or unofficially by simply leaving the author’s name and book title in the comments section below (we’re always looking for new and fabulous book recommendations!).