Exclusive Interview with Marcus, Gavin and Simeon from The Barons series + a Giveaway!

AHHH!! I am SO excited to host Santino Hassell today on the blog! Check out part two of Marcus, Gavin and Simeon’s interview—and today Gavin is answering all our burning questions about our favorite sassy quarterback.

INTRO:

With book 2 in The Barons series coming out, the boys from the Barons themselves have agreed to sit down and answer some questions about each other.

If you haven’t met them yet—there’s Gavin Brawley, the tight-end with the short temper who got his happily ever after in Illegal Contact, Simeon Boudreaux, the quarterback who gets his story in Down by Contact, and Marcus Hendricks—the star running back and their level-headed best friend who has a serious weakness for romantic comedies.

He’s also the angel on their shoulders who keeps them honest, so who better than to ask questions? In a series of interviews, Marcus will quiz Simeon and Gavin on how well they know each other before quizzing Simeon on the type of guy he’s looking for. Enjoy!

PART II

Marcus: Alright Gavin, you’re up. It’s your turn to play the newlywed game, but instead of answering questions about your gorgeously nerdy hipster boyfriend, you’ll be answering questions about our horny best friend Simeon, who tends to find trouble like a heat seeking missile.

Simeon: Wow, thanks.

Gavin: Sounds legit to me.

Simeon: You should talk, Mr. Suspended for An Entire Season.

Gavin: Hey, I have no regrets. If I hadn’t been suspended, I wouldn’t have ever met Noah.

Marcus: *clutching his chest* Awwww, buddy.

Simeon: That was sweet, dude. For real.

Gavin: Shut the hell up. Let’s get this thing started.

Marcus: Okay, bud, if Simeon were to meet his untimely demise—who would he ask to delete all his browser history?

Gavin: Definitely you. He knows I’d—

Simeon: Gavin would be too broken up over my death to remember how to use a computer.

Gavin: That is one hundred percent not what I was gonna say.

Simeon: Yeah right, sucker. I’m your platonic life partner who will definitely move into you and Noah’s home when y’all get married. Wingman for life!

Gavin: Why don’t you ask Marcus? He’s the one deleting your browser history.

Marcus: *snickering* What, are you jealous that I’m the more trustworthy friend?

Gavin: I’m mostly upset that the two of you are still talking to me instead of letting me go home so Noah can suck my—

Marcus: Ookay, next question! Gavin, what was Simeon’s favorite thing about playing football as a kid?

Gavin: Seducing seemingly straight jocks.

Simeon: What! No…

Gavin: *flat stare*

Simeon: Okay, fine. But I also liked making my mama proud of me.

Marcus: Too bad your mama likes me better. She even calls me first on holidays. But anyways, Gav, what position would Simeon play if he wasn’t the quarterback?

Gavin: None. He loves being the center of attention.

Simeon: *flips Gavin off*

Marcus: He’s not lying though, is he?

Simeon: Siiigh. No. No, he’s not.

Gavin: See?

Marcus: I see that you two have a serious bromance going on and now I’m feeling jealous. But anyways, next question: Gavin, how would Simeon finish this sentence? “I wish Gavin would…”

Gavin: “I wish Gavin would share his wisdom on how to find a man so I can—”

Simeon: Nahhh, wrong, try again. I have zero desire to be tied down to one guy, no matter how lovely the guy you found is. *pause* Even though I technically flirted with him first….

Gavin: And I almost took your fucking head off.

Marcus: Gavin. Language, man, come on. *shaking his head* Okay, last question since I cut out the sex one—if Simeon had a five-year-plan, what would be the first two items on his list?

Gavin: Hmm… Probably a forty-five-million-dollar contract so he makes more than that assclown Tom Brady, and… a boyfriend.

Simeon: Oh my God, are you even trying to win? You’re obsessed with me getting a boyfriend just because you have a boyfriend. It’s getting annoying. I feel like we’re in high school. Or a bad sitcom.

Gavin: Not my fault you’re blatantly pathetic and lonely.

Simeon: Shut up.

Marcus: Well… alrighty then, Gavin—you lose. Simeon, you win! Yay, be happy.

Simeon: Yeah, I’m thrilled. Now, do we get to ask you questions?

Marcus: No goddamn way. But… we get to ask you questions about potential suitors.

Simeon: Oh my God.

Gavin: Don’t worry, bro. We’ll find you someone good.

The second Barons book, Down by Contact, is out now!
You don’t want to miss Simeon’s story – you can check out my review here!

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Paperback ARC of DOWN BY CONTACT by Santino Hassell
(US only)

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For part three of the interview, head over to Smexy Books!

Down by Contact by Santino Hassell
Series: The Barons #2 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: January 16th 2018
Add to Goodreads

Two rival football players begin a game with higher stakes than the Super Bowl in this steamy romance from the author of Illegal Contact.

Simeon Boudreaux, the New York Barons’ golden-armed quarterback, is blessed with irresistible New Orleans charm and a face to melt your mama’s heart. He’s universally adored by fans and the media. Coming out as gay in solidarity with his teammate hasn’t harmed his reputation in the least—except for some social media taunting from rival linebacker Adrián Bravo.

Though they were once teammates, Adrián views Simeon as a traitor and the number-one name on the New Jersey Predators’ shit list. When animosity between the two NFL players reaches a boiling point on the field, culminating in a dirty fist fight, they’re both benched for six games and sentenced to joint community service teaching sullen, Brooklyn teens how to play ball.

At first, they can barely stand to be in the same room, but running the camp forces them to shape up. With no choice but to work together, Simeon realizes Adrián is more than his alpha-jerk persona, and Adrián begins to question why he’s always had such strong feelings for the gorgeous QB…

Reading Order: The Barons series

 

#1 ~ Illegal Contact: My Review • EbookAudible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Down by Contact: My Review • Ebook • Audible • Goodreads


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Best Books of 2017 + Giveaway!

There’s only a few more days until 2018 is here, which means it’s that time of year again! Here are my top 17 reads of 2017 in no particular order, books I highly recommend everyone read if they haven’t already. Make sure to check out a fantastic giveaway below too! What are your favorite reads of the year? Did any of yours make my list?


1. The Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews

  

#1 ~ Burn for Me: EbookPaperbackAudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ White Hot: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Wildfire: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads

Burn for Me technically isn’t a 2017 favorite but a 2015 one, but I loved this series so much that I had to include it again! The Hidden Legacy series concluded this year, and without a doubt, it’s my new favorite urban fantasy series. I am obsessed with all things Nevada and Rogan (and am praying this isn’t the last we see of them). Everything from the romance to the action to the humor to the characters is top notch in this series – if you love anything magic-related (and even if you don’t), you need to read this series!

He was looking at me like I was the only thing that had ever mattered. “If you don’t survive, none of this is worth it to me. I love you.”


2. Roomies by Christina Lauren

My ReviewEbook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads

Modern day marriage of convenience, anyone? I ADORED Roomies. This is the kind of read that will have you doing heart eyes and sighing madly for days. We have our sweet heroine and our gorgeous Irish musician hero who fake a marriage so he won’t get deported. It just so happens that along the way, husband and wife fall for each other – what could go wrong? Christina Lauren balances the romance with the musical aspect of the story tremendously. If you’re interested in music, I’d definitely recommend this one!

“I’ve never met anyone who loved my playing enough to want to put a ring on it.”


3. Dating-ish and Kissing Tolstoy by Penny Reid

 

Dating-ish: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
Kissing Tolstoy: EbookPaperbackGoodreads

Yes, I’m cheating and including two Penny Reid books as a 2017 favorite, but I had to! Dating-ish is my new favorite Knitting in the City book. Who knew robots and romance could mix so well – or be so sexy!? The main characters are charming and hilarious – they become wonderful friends that happen to be perfect for each other and fall in love. Of course, it’s not that easy, but reading how they get to their HEA was a pure delight. I highly recommend this book if you want a unique slow burn romance!

“You—being with you—was the first time I wanted real life over a virtual existence. You distracted me. I’d never been distracted before.”

Kissing Tolstoy blew me away! I love a good professor/student forbidden romance, and Penny gave that to me in this perfect little novella. I never wanted it to end! It’s adorable, smart, sexy – it’s the kind of romance where you can’t WAIT for the main characters to get together. I loved it… and am dying for more of the series!

“You are flawless to me,” I held her with might and purpose, needing her to feel the veracity of my words, “We fit together like custom pieces from a two person puzzle. And therefore, you are exactly my perfect kind of nice.”


4. Act Your Age by Eve Dangerfield

My ReviewEbook • Goodreads

Grumpy heroes, FTW!!! One grumpy hero + an adorable heroine + humor + kink = a happy Lacey. This was actually my first time reading Eve Dangerfield, and let’s just say that I’m a fan for life now. For all you erotica lovers out there, get your hands on this book! I will say that it’s not for everyone, but you might be surprised too!

“Do you think we’re weird?” Kate asked, because that was the thing she’d always been afraid to ask.
Ty pulled her into his arms. “We’re weird in the best possible way.”
“So… yes?”
He laughed. “Everyone’s weird Kate, we’re the perfect kind of weird for each other.”


5. The Day of the Duchess by Sarah MacLean

My ReviewEbook • Paperback • Hardcover • Audible • Goodreads

If you know me, then you know Sarah MacLean is my all-time favorite historical romance author. I have several top favorite books by her, but they were all blown away when I read The Day of the Duchess. It’s a second chance romance (my favorite) and an ANGST-FEST. My heart almost couldn’t take Sera and Malcolm’s second chance at love – but I sure did love reading about Malcolm winning back the love of his life. If there’s a historical romance you need to read, it’s this one.

“I shall have you. I shall love you. And I shall grow old in your arms.”


6. The Red by Tiffany Reisz

My ReviewEbook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads

It takes a lot for me to feel scandalized while reading, but if anyone can do it, it’s Tiffany Reisz. This book is fantastical, literally and figuratively. It is honestly the HOTTEST book I’ve ever read, and I need Tiffany to write more like this. Like I said in my review, The Red is erotica in its purest, dirtiest, and finest form… and I wholeheartedly LOVED IT. Would definitely recommend this to anyone who wants a read outside their comfort zone!

His money made her a whore, but his cock had made her his slave. She never wanted to taste freedom again. She only wanted to taste him.


7. How to Date a Douchebag series by Sara Ney

 

#2 ~ The Failing Hours: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ The Learning Hours: My Review • EbookPaperback • Audible • Goodreads

I can’t recommend this series enough if you love new adult or sports romances! I fell in love with Sara Ney (and wrestling) thanks to Zeke and Rhett. These two heroes couldn’t be more different (a jackass vs the nicest guy ever), but I loved their books all the same. They make particularly good opposites-attract romances too. These books reminded me just why I love the NA genre so much – and I’m so glad we’re getting more Douchebags next year!

“The best part of me is you, Violet.”


8. Infini and Damaged Like Us by Krista & Becca Ritchie

 

Infini: My ReviewEbook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
Damaged Like Us: EbookPaperbackAudibleGoodreads

Obviously I had to include my loves Krista & Becca Ritchie! This duo is so talented at writing about romance and family. Both the Aerial Ethereal series and the new Like Us series at their heart is about amazing families who will do anything for each other. It’s just that one family is part of a circus, and the other is full of world-famous celebrities – and how can you NOT read that, right? K & B never cease to amaze me with their writing talent, and I absolutely can’t wait for more from both these series!

“Circus is family.”
The love we carry for each other is the strongest and most vulnerable place in us all.


9. The Fortunate Ones by R.S. Grey

Ebook • PaperbackAudibleGoodreads

I can’t even explain how much I simply loved The Fortunate Ones. I was blown away by the heart and humor that’s in this book. It’s the perfect slow burn romance that I couldn’t put down. Plus, I’m always a sucker for an older, rich hero, and James Ashwood is divine. I love the chemistry between him and Brooke – they’re my new favorite couple from R.S. Grey!

I blink my eyes open to find him staring down at me with undisguised emotion—in fact, he’s looking at me as if I’m the most beautiful thing he’s ever seen, and it’s too much.


10. The Kingpin of Camelot by Cassandra Gannon

EbookPaperback • Goodreads

Cassandra Gannon is like the Beyoncé of indie authors for me, because she does surprise releases, but every time she does, I drop everything I’m doing and read her book. She writes the BEST fairytale fantasy retellings and they are the funniest, most romantic, most ridiculous things I ever read. The Kingpin of Camelot is a retelling of both the story of Midas and Camelot/King Arthur – I always love and am amazed with the stuff Cassandra Gannon comes up with when she retells a story in her own unique, hilarious way!

“I love you.” The words slipped out and he didn’t even try to call them back. “I am so crazy in love with you, there’s never been any hiding it. Everyone in Camelot knows I’m yours. I’m already designing the billboards to brag about it.”


11. Too Hard to Forget and Follow by Tessa Bailey

 

THtF: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
Follow: My Review • Ebook • Goodreads

Too Hard to Forget is another second chance romance I LOVED! I can’t resist some good angst and Tessa Bailey gave that to me in spades with THtF. Plus, I love when a heroine wants a little revenge on the man she loves who hurt her. Peggy certainly makes Elliott regret letting her go, but this time he’s smart enough not to make the same mistake again. I always love Tessa Bailey heroes and Elliott is my new favorite one!

“Miss you?” He grated the incredulous question, dropping his mouth to her temple. “You left me without a soul. I can barely remember the days since you left. They passed without me feeling a single thing. Because you are feeling for me. You’re the only thing that keeps me from being numb. Twice in my life you’ve turned me back into a living, breathing man, and missing you… missing you, Peggy, doesn’t even begin to cover it. You revive me.”

If you’ve ever wanted a story about that hot guy you saw on Instagram who posts pictures of his gorgeous self and his dog, well it’s here! Of course, this is Tessa Bailey, so you also get a heaping dose of intense chemistry and delicious dirty talk. Follow

You couldn’t fake what we had. Couldn’t duplicate it. We were so fucking lucky to have found each other once, and even as I’d always suspected it, I knew without a shadow of a doubt that letting her go was the biggest mistake of my life.
Now I needed to fix it.


12. So Good by Nicola Rendell

My ReviewEbook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads

Another book involving dogs… do we see a trend here? As in, I love beautiful men and dogs? So Good is my new favorite friends-to-lovers novel. It’s is the SWEETEST book I’ve ever read – just thinking about the story makes me feel all happy inside, that’s how feel-good of a book it is. And the hero SAVES AND ADOPTS A TINY CHIHUAHUA AND NAMES HER CUPCAKE AFTER HIS BEST FRIEND/LOVE OF HIS LIFE WHO IS A BAKER!!! Can you tell how much I love that!?

“Tell me.”
“I want to take you hard, and I want to make you mine. Tonight and every night.”
“Who says I’m not yours already?” she said, all breathy, as her hand slid around to my ass, and her fingers moved into my pocket. “Who says I wasn’t yours all along and just never knew it?”


13. Trigger by Scarlett Dawn

EbookPaperbackGoodreads

Scarlet Dawn is a new-to-me author this year, but Trigger has become one of my absolute favorite new adult PNRs I’ve ever read! If you’re in the mood for an epic post-apocalyptic world with secret shifters and a clumsy yet badass heroine (and a hero who does and says things you need to fan yourself for), you NEED this book in your life!

I closed my eyes. “You are going to ruin me.”
He let go of my shoulder and placed his lips against my throat, whispering, “In the best possible way.”


14. Silver Silence by Nalini Singh

My Review • Ebook • Hardcover • Audible • Goodreads

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Nalini Singh is my PNR queen! Reading Silver Silence reaffirmed just why I love her books so much and brought me back to the early days of the Psy-Changeling series. You get an adorable, charming, gorgeous bear alpha who tries to win the heart of the seemingly cold Psy that he knows is his one and only mate. Their slow burn is one of the best things I’ve read all year and I can’t wait for more of the bears!

Solnyshko moyo.” A kiss to the dampness of her neck as he roughly spoke words whose meaning had deepened to raw intimacy with a simple change in order.
Sun of my heart. Sunshine of my life.


15. Illegal Contact by Santino Hassell

My ReviewEbook • Audible • Goodreads

Some delicious M/M sports romance, anyone? We have a not-out bisexual football player who is on house arrest, and a new personal assistant who looks just like Clark Kent he wants to do dirty things to. Add in some fantastic, fiery chemistry and some witty banter, and you have Gavin and Noah. I loved everything about their sexy, sweet, slow romance – I highly recommend this one for M/M lovers! P.S. I’ve read the next book and it is AMAZEBALLS!

“Why do you need me?”
“You make me feel alive.” I kissed down to his collarbone. “Make me feel real.”
“You are real. And if you stop hiding the best parts of yourself, everyone else will see it too.”


16. Man Hands by Sarina Bowen & Tanya Eby

EbookPaperback • Goodreads

Man Hands was absolutely H I L A R I O U S!!! It was one of the most ridiculous, funny books I’ve ever read, and I loved every bit of it. This was the kind of comedy that the more I read, the more I couldn’t believe what was happening or coming out of the characters’ mouths. Did I mention how ridiculous it was? But it totally worked, because I couldn’t stop laughing while I read. Sarina Bowen and Tanya Eby make a dynamic author duo – I need more from them already!

He pulls out and collapses next to me. His leg is over mine, and he reaches across my naked breast to grab my hand. “I’m Tom,” he says.
“Brynn,” I breathe back.
“Well, Brynn… It’s really nice to meet you.”
We shake hands.


17. Black Sheep by Zara Cox

My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads

2017 must be the year of second chance romances, because I’m ending my list (kinda) with another fantastic second chance romance! I don’t read many dark romances these days, but I couldn’t resist the blurb of Black Sheep, and I’m so glad I didn’t. It’s a wild, crazy, intense, angsty read, a second chance romance between lovers turned enemies, with an obsessed alpha hero – how could I not enjoy it? Black Sheep is the epitome of hate to love and love to hate, and if you love dark romance, I highly recommend it!

“I love you. But it’s not the kind of love that is selfless enough to let you go. My love is the fucking selfish kind. The kind that will demand to have you in my arms when I go to sleep at night. The kind that will insist on seeing your face every morning, no matter what…. I’m the selfish bastard who needs you to breathe.”


I have to cut this list off at some point, but I do want to include some honorable mentions!

  
   

I hope everyone has a fantastic New Year’s and an even better 2018!

lacey


-Your choice of one of my favorite 2017 reads (one winner)
-Your choice of a 2018 release (one winner)
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Spotlight Tour + Excerpt & Giveaway: Heart on Fire by Amanda Bouchet

Heart on Fire by Amanda Bouchet
Series: Kingmaker Chronicles #3 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: January 2nd 2018
Add to Goodreads

The riveting conclusion to The Kingmaker Chronicles! 

GODS. I’M AN IDIOT.

Without Griffin—and apparently a few meddling Gods—to push me along, I’d still be telling fortunes at the circus, lying about my past, ignoring my future, and living as far away from my tyrant mother as humanly possible.

True understanding thuds into place. Hope isn’t just an abstract concept; it’s me. Flesh and blood me. Griffin knew it all along. Probably everyone did. I’m an idea in human form.

I have the power of the Gods at my fingertips.

The only thing ever stopping me has been me.

Buy Links:
Amazon • Barnes & NobleiBooks • KoboIndieBound

Now here’s an excerpt from Heart on Fire! ❤

excerpt button

Griffin’s hand tightens on my arm.

I roll my eyes. “I’m not going to fall in, you know. The cliff is all the way over there.”

He loosens his hold. Sort of.

I glance up at him, trying to tame my sudden smile. Domineering and overprotective doesn’t even begin to describe my husband. There’s also deliciously jealous, but that’s another subject all together. The black stubble framing his mouth makes his full lips look impossibly kissable. It’s been hours since they were last on mine. And I love to kiss the hawkish curve of his nose. So strong and masculine. I adore that nose. And the rest of him. His powerful body. Muscle. Sinew. Bone.

I gaze up at him, nearly sighing. “I love you.”

Griffin stops dead in his tracks and glares down at me. “That’s it. We’re leaving.”

I blink. “What? Why?”

“You think something terrible is going to happen.”

“No, I don’t.” I frown. “I don’t think so.”

His eyes narrow, wariness hardening his expression. “You do.”

“What are you talking about?”

He scowls at me.

“Well, something terrible could happen,” I concede. “But that’s always true, no matter where or when. Tomorrow, I could trip over my own feet and break my neck for all I know.”

Judging by the look on Griffin’s face, I don’t think that helped.

“You only say you love me or you’re sorry when you’re scared or almost dead. You’re not almost dead, so what’s scaring you?” he demands.

“I say I love you all the time!”

“When we’re in bed. When I’m so deep inside you that you can’t feel anything but me. Not when we’re about to knock on a stranger’s door. What’s scaring you?” he demands again.

I huff. “At the moment? The way your jaw is popping like it’s alive.”

Griffin crosses his arms. “I want honesty. Right now.”

Right now, Your Imperialness?”

His nostrils flare. His hard look is spectacular.

I’m not intimidated. It makes me hot. Then again, so does just about everything at the moment, but not in the same way.

“If you must know, the magic around here is a little intense and…disturbing, but it’s not scaring me. Not really. It’s probably just something coming from whatever is down there in that God Pit,” I say, waving toward the cliff. “I’m a shade nervous. That’s all.”

His eyes stay flinty and unconvinced. “That’s all? That’s not generally cause for a heartfelt declaration, at least not from you.”

I toss my hands in the air. “Fine. I take it back. I looked at you, found you incredibly desirable, and my body got all hot and tingly. I blame pregnancy for an excess of sentimentality and…and…urges!”

Griffin stares at me. Then his mouth splits into a grin that makes me all kinds of angry. He reaches for me again, his grasp lighter this time.

“Incredibly desirable?” Looking smug, he threads his fingers through mine.

Scowling, I poke him in the chest with my free hand. “Well, you do have that whole overbearing warlord thing going on. Plus, plenty of muscles in all the right places, some good ideas, and, you know, a really big sword.”

A laugh cracks out of Griffin, and my heart swoops like an off-balance bird. He’s rarely free with humor these days, or maybe there’s just not enough of it in our lives anymore. The happy flutter that wings through my chest takes any lingering irritation away with it.

Gah! Talk about mood changes!

Griffin captures my other hand and then pulls me in to him until I’m standing between his legs. “I love you, too, Cat.”

He kisses me, his mouth pressing softly against mine. Warmth rolls straight from his lips to my toes, which curl in my boots.

“Tell me again,” he coaxes.

I shake my head, our noses brushing.

“Say it,” he demands against my mouth.

“I don’t think so.”

“Last chance,” he warns, gently nipping at my lower lip.

“Big sword.”

Chuckling, Griffin swats my bottom. “There’s more where that came from.”

I look up at him through my lashes. “I sure hope so.”

He grins. “I think you just managed coy.”

“Good Gods! Has the Underworld frozen over?”

“Next, Centaurs will fly.” He brushes his lips over mine again, not lingering, and when he lifts his head, his black hair ruffling on the faintly sulfurous wind, the teasing gleam is already absent from his eyes. “You’re sure there’s nothing else?”

“Nothing besides our baby wreaking havoc on my moods?” I shake my head. “But I wanted you before. I want you always.”

He lifts his hand and brushes his thumb across my lips. Then his fingers fall away, trailing lightly down my arm until I shiver.

“You’re the air I breathe,” he says without a trace of humor in his voice.

My whole chest clenches hard, squeezing a tight, almost painful beat from my heart. “I admire you,” I reply. “I need you. I love you with all my heart.”

Griffin offers me a different kind of smile this time, small, lopsided, gentle, and so entirely genuine. It fades almost immediately, though, and he straightens to his full, imposing height, abruptly pinning me with his warlord stare. “If you feel anything off here, we leave, with or without the potion we came for. You’ve got great instincts, Cat. Trust your gut.”

I nod. I will. I always do.

Reading Order: Kingmaker Chronicles series

  

#1 ~ A Promise of Fire: EbookPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ Breath of Fire: EbookPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#3 ~ Heart on Fire: Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads

about the author button

USA Today bestselling author AMANDA BOUCHET grew up in New England and studied French at the undergraduate and graduate levels, first at Bowdoin College and then at Bowling Green State University. She moved to Paris, France, in 2001 and has been there ever since. She met her husband while studying abroad, and the family now includes two bilingual children, who will soon be correcting her French. Connect with her at www.amandabouchet.com.

Website • Facebook • Twitter • Goodreads

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Enter to win a bundle containing A Promise of Fire and Breath of Fire, the first two books in Amanda Bouchet’s Kingmaker Chronicles!

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Twelve Days of Christmas Giveaway Hop

Welcome to the Twelve Days of Christmas Giveaway Hop, hosted by Stuck in Books!

For my stop, I’m giving away your choice of an upcoming 2018 release under $20, open INTL as long as The Book Depository ships to you!

Here are some 2018 releases that I’m excited for!
(Click the covers to preorder)

 
   
   

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Your choice of a 2018 release under $20
Open INTL as long as The Book Depository ships to you

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Berkley Bookmas: Exclusive Excerpt from The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

We are so excited to participate in Berkley Bookmas and we’re hosting an exclusive excerpt from The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang today! Berkley Bookmas is chock full of exclusive content from authors like exclusive excerpts, deleted scenes, author recipes and more! Check out the calendar of events below:

Keep reading for an early look into The Kiss Quotient (one of my MOST anticipated reads of 2018) plus a huge giveaway Berkley is hosting!

Now here’s an excerpt from The Kiss Quotient! ❤

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“Excuse me, are you Stella?”

Her eyes shot to his face, and Michael lost his train of thought. Those sexy librarian glasses showcased the most stunning pair of soft brown eyes. And her lips—they were just full enough to be tempting without detracting from her overall air of sweetness.

“I’m sorry. I must have the wrong person,” he said with a smile he hoped was more apologetic and less embarrassed. There was no way a girl like this had hired an escort.

She blinked and jostled the table as she flew to her feet. “No, that’s me. You’re Michael. I recognize you from your picture.” She stuck her hand out. “I’m Stella Lane. Nice to meet you.”

He stared at her open expression and proffered hand for a stunned fraction of a second. This wasn’t how clients greeted him. They usually waved him into a seat with a sly curl of their lips and a sparkle in their eyes—that sparkle that said they thought they were better than him but were looking forward to what he could offer anyway. She greeted him like he was…an equal.

Quickly recovering from his surprise, he wrapped her slender hand in his and shook it. “Michael Phan. Nice to meet you, too.”

When he released her, she motioned toward his chair awkwardly. “Please, have a seat.”

He sat and watched as she perched herself on the precarious edge of her seat, her back straight as a board. She searched his face, but when he arched an eyebrow at her, she switched her focus to the menu. She adjusted the position of her glasses with a wrinkle of her nose.

“Are you hungry? I am.” Her knuckles went white as she clung to the menu. “The salmon is good here, and the steak. My dad likes the lamb—” Her gaze jumped to his face, and, even in the dim light, he could see her cheeks go crimson. She cleared her throat. “Maybe not the lamb.”

Because he couldn’t resist, he asked, “Why not the lamb?”

“I think it tastes woolly, and if you…when we…” She stared up at the ceiling and took a deep breath. “All I’d be thinking about would be sheep and lambs and wool.”

“Understood,” he said with a grin.

When she stared at his mouth like she couldn’t remember what she was going to say, his grin widened. Women chose him because they liked the way he looked. Few of them responded to him like this, however. It was flattering even as it was funny.

“Are there any things you would prefer I not eat or drink?” she asked.

“No, I’m pretty easy.” He kept his voice light and tried to ignore the tightness in his chest. It had to be heartburn. Simple thoughtfulness wasn’t doing this to him.

After the waitress took their order and left, Stella sipped from her water glass and drew geometrical shapes in the condensation with delicate fingertips. When she noticed him watching her, she drew her hand back and sat on it, flushing like she’d been caught doing something she shouldn’t.

Something about that was kind of endearing. If she hadn’t already paid, he wouldn’t believe she actually wanted this. Why did she want this? She should have a boyfriend…or a husband. Against his better judgement—it was best when he didn’t know—he looked at her left hand resting on the table. No ring. No white line.

“I have a proposition for you,” she said suddenly, pinning him with a gaze that was surprisingly direct. “It would require a commitment of sorts—for the next couple months, I imagine. I would…prefer…to have sole access to you during that time. If you’re available.”

“What do you have in mind?”

“Please tell me if you’re available first.”

“I only do Friday nights.” That was non-negotiable. Escorting once a week was bad enough. If he had to do it more than that, he’d lose his fucking mind, and he couldn’t afford for that to happen. Too many people depended on him.

He never scheduled repeat appointments with the same client, either. They tended to get attached, and he couldn’t stand that. But he wanted to hear what she was proposing before he declined.

“You have the next few months open then?” she asked.

“It depends on what you’re proposing.”

She pushed her glasses up her nose and drew her shoulders back. “I’m awful at…what you do. But I want to get better. I think I can get better if someone would teach me. I’d like that person to be you.”

Understanding splashed over Michael in surreal waves. She thought she was bad. At sex. And wanted lessons to improve. She wanted him to tutor her.

How the hell did you teach sex?

The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang
Series: The Kiss Quotient #1
Publication Date: June 5th 2018
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A heartwarming and refreshing debut novel that proves one thing: there’s not enough data in the world to predict what will make your heart tick.

Stella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases–a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.

It doesn’t help that Stella has Asperger’s and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice–with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can’t afford to turn down Stella’s offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan–from foreplay to more-than-missionary position…

Before long, Stella not only learns to appreciate his kisses, but crave all of the other things he’s making her feel. Their no-nonsense partnership starts making a strange kind of sense. And the pattern that emerges will convince Stella that love is the best kind of logic…

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Helen Hoang is that shy person who never talks. Until she does. And the worst things fly out of her mouth. She read her first romance novel in eighth grade and has been addicted ever since. In 2016, she was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in line with what was previously known as Asperger’s Syndrome. Her journey inspired THE KISS QUOTIENT. She currently lives in San Diego, California with her husband, two kids, and pet fish.

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