Blog Tour + Review & Giveaway: The Greatest Risk by Kristen Ashley

The Greatest Risk by Kristen Ashley
Series: Honey #3 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: May 1st 2018
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A woman unable to connect, struggling to hide another part of her. A man burning to learn her truth, and make her whole. Through explosive passion and deep exploration, they are about to take the greatest risk of all. But will they be able to take that leap, and come out on the other side together? In this next passionate novel in the Honey series, New York Times bestselling author Kristen Ashley delivers a stunningly romantic and intensely sexy novel that will stay with you long after you turn the final page.

Buy Links:
Amazon • Barnes & NobleBooks-A-MillionIndieBoundPowells

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I honestly wasn’t expecting to enjoy – LOVE – The Greatest Risk as much as I did. I love KA but the first Honey book just wasn’t for me and I had to DNF it. I thought I had given up on the series but I couldn’t resist the chance to read KA one more time – and I am SO glad that I read this one. I was swept away by Stellan and Sixx’s story. If you know KA, then you know her books are long-winded, but with TGR, I couldn’t stop flipping the pages to see what would happen next for this fascinating couple. This book won’t be for everyone – it’s erotica/BDSM, but if you’re looking for something that’s unique and outside the box, I highly recommend this one.

“Undeniably mine,” he stated the answer she refused to say. Then he went in for the kill. “Forever, sweetheart.”

Sixx is known as the Ice Princess of The Honey. She’s a badass Mistress that doesn’t let anyone into her heart. She’s got demons and scars from her past, and she’s not about to let them hurt anyone she grows to care for, and certainly not the man she wants but can’t have. But when the man who will become her everything sets his sights on Sixx, there is no way to protect her heart from the onslaught that is Stellan Lange.

“Sweet pussy is worth any hassle. But to earn the attention of a queen . . .” He curled his hand around her jaw and used it to force her to look at him. The touch was dominant, but gentle, and achingly sweet, and when he caught her eyes, he concluded, speaking every word in a way each was laced with steel, “I. Will. Do. Anything.”

I love a good alpha male, and if there’s one thing KA is known for, it’s her alpha males. Now sometimes, they can get a little domineering and overbearing, but Stellan was absolute perfection. I adored Stellan and his determination to win the heart and love of the Ice Princess. He is kind and caring when it comes to Sixx’s heartbreaking backstory, but can be ruthless when it comes to protecting those he loves. He is the perfect Dom for Sixx, capable of handling her need to switch and submit. He’s all in for his queen right from the start, and I loved every minute of him building them the perfect life he knows they are meant to have.

“Be strong for the world, darling, if that’s what you need to be. But here, with me, you can be whatever you care to be.”

I went into The Greatest Risk essentially as a standalone, but I am definitely thinking about going back and trying this series from the beginning again. Sixx and Stellan’s romance held me captivated, their journey towards happiness as beautiful as it is heart-wrenching. My one complaint is that I do wish that the book could’ve explored more of Sixx and her being a switch. I felt like this aspect of her was a bit glossed over when it came to her and Stellan’s relationship, because with him, he was her Master, she was his sub and not a Mistress. But the chemistry itself in this book was a glorious thing. KA knows how to write steam, and she brings her A-game in TGR.

If you’re a fan of the author, I definitely urge you to read this book. I really enjoyed the way KA explored a BDSM relationship between two Doms. She gives her own unique take on the lifestyle, and I’m glad to have read it. I really hope we will be getting more Honey books after this!


lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.

Reading Order: Honey series

  

#1 ~ The Deep End: EbookPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ The Farthest Edge: EbookPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#3 ~ The Greatest Risk: EbookPaperback • AudibleGoodreads

about the author button

Kristen Ashley is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over fifty novels, including Mystery Man, The Gamble, and Own the Wind. She grew up in Indiana, but has lived in Colorado and the West Country of England.

Website • Twitter • FacebookInstagram • Goodreads

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(1) Paperback of The Greatest Risk by Kristen Ashley
(US Only)

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Release Day Review: Shacking Up by Helena Hunting

Shacking Up by Helena Hunting
Series: Standalone
Publication Date: May 30th 2017
Links: EbookPaperbackAudible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Ruby Scott is months behind on rent and can’t seem to land a steady job. She has one chance to turn things around with a big audition. But instead of getting her big break, she gets sick as a dog and completely bombs it in the most humiliating fashion. All thanks to a mysterious, gorgeous guy who kissed—and then coughed on—her at a party the night before.

Luckily, her best friend might have found the perfect opportunity; a job staying at the lavish penthouse apartment of hotel magnate Bancroft Mills while he’s out of town, taking care of his exotic pets. But when the newly-evicted Ruby arrives to meet her new employer, it turns out Bane is the same guy who got her sick.

Seeing his role in Ruby’s dilemma, Bane offers her a permanent job as his live-in pet sitter until she can get back on her feet. Filled with hilariously awkward encounters and enough sexual tension to heat a New York City block, Shacking Up, from NYT and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting, is sure to keep you laughing and swooning all night long.

I’m a big fan of Helena Hunting’s Pucked series (the audiobooks are amaaazing) so I was excited when I heard she’d be releasing a standalone rom-com! Unfortunately, I didn’t love Shacking Up quite as much as I did her other series – it was a little too slow and too long for my taste. But for those of you who love Helena Hunting or are in the mood for something slow burn and hilarious, you might want to check this out!

Ruby Scott’s life has taken a turn for the worse – she’s wayyy behind on rent, can’t find a steady job, and acting/dance auditions are scarce. But the one time she gets an audition for a role she knows she’ll nail, she gets insanely sick and ruins her chances by throwing up on stage. How did she get sick? From her friend’s engagement party the night before, where she was kissed by a random, hot, but sick guy who thought she was someone else.

Her best friend feels bad that Ruby bombed her audition, because it was her party that she got sick at, so she devises a plan for Ruby to stay at a lavish apartment and take care of the owner’s animals. But of course, because Ruby has terrible luck, the owner happens to be the guy who kissed her and got her sick. Bane feels awful, so he agrees to the pet-sitting arrangement. It doesn’t hurt that Ruby is gorgeous and he hasn’t been able to get their kiss out of his mind…

“Wow. You have a binder?” Ruby looks like she’s trying not to laugh.
“There are a lot of things that need to be covered.”
“Uh huh.”
“Your tone implies you think this is excessive.”
She takes the binder from me and opens it. “How many pages are in this? More than a hundred?”
“It’s ninety-eight. Francesca and Tiny have very specific needs.”
“Ninety-eight pages of needs.” She leafs through it and mutters, “I wish someone was this in tune to my needs.”

Ruby and Bane feel a connection (and some intense lust for each other), but wth Bane leaving on a business trip for five weeks, that doesn’t leave much time for them to actually be together and explore what they feel. What ensues are banter-filled texts, sweet FaceTiming sessions, and the occasionally awkward encounter, and you have Bane and Ruby’s build-up of their romance.

I liked Shacking Up well enough, but it just wasn’t interesting enough for me to keep my attention. The main characters are apart for a large majority of the book – sure, they keep in constant contact with one another, but I would’ve liked them to be physically close too. The romance was too slow too – nothing REALLY happens between Ruby and Bane until Bane gets back from his trip, which is way later in the novel. So I didn’t love this book like I hoped to, but it was a classic Helena Hunting-laugh-out-loud read. Be prepared for some cringeworthy moments, because these characters are full of them!


lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.


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Release Day Review: Riot by Tillie Cole

Riot by Tillie Cole
Series: Scarred Souls #4 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: March 7th 2017
Links: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

BRUTAL. INTENSE. PASSIONATE. THE WORLD OF THE SCARRED SOULS.

They call me 901. I am a monster, a killer, a champion. In the blood pit I am a god. I have no name, no family, and no identity. When master says fight, I fight…until I am the only one left standing. I have one goal, to fight so well that I am freed. I don’t need friends, I don’t need women. They are weaknesses. I am strong.

Until I see her. She is gorgeous and kind and off-limits to me. She was stolen as a child to be the worst type of slave and now master wants her. What he wants, he gets. With a smile, she melts my brutal heart. I have never wanted anything more.

I need to make a choice. Freedom or Love. I cannot choose wrong.

I hadn’t read a good dark romance in a while, so I was in the perfect mood for it when I started Riot! Tillie Cole writes some great dark romances, with intense alphas and obsessive love, which is what I was expecting to get in this final Scarred Souls novel, and I wasn’t disappointed. This finale is a heart-pounding, dramatic ending to this dark, gritty series that I highly enjoy. Every moment in the series has been leading up to this book. If you’re a fan of Scarred Souls, you’ll definitely want to get your hands on Riot!

“You are the Arziani Pit Bull. You are feared. But to me, you are safety.”

901 is the most powerful fighter, the Master’s champion, of the blood pit. He was taken as an orphan and groomed to be the violent, killing machine that he is now. He is undefeatable and unfallable… until he sees 152, the High Mona who the Master uses for his sick pleasure. 901 has always known that to accept a woman into his heart would mean weakness, but there’s nothing that can stop him from falling for 152 as they embrace each other in this dark, hopeless world.

901 and 152’s story broke my heart. The way they were forced into this life and broken down… it’s awful. But despite it all, they both manage to find light in each other. Their romance grew slowly and beautifully (if a bit cheesy at times), and it was the light that balanced out the darkness of this blood pit underworld. But is there a way for these two to escape this broken world? Or will they forever be owned by the Master?

“Inessa and Ilya. Ilya and Inessa . . . more than just our numbers.”

Riot might not be my favorite of the Scarred Souls series (that belongs to Raze), but it’s definitely a fantastic conclusion that fans of the series shouldn’t miss. The build-up to the climax of the story was so well done – I loved it! All of the Scarred Souls characters have been through hell and back, and I’m so happy with the ending that they all get in this novel. The whole story is action-packed, suspenseful, and crazy intense – basically everything you expect in a Tillie Cole dark romance. The heroes are over-the-top alphas, the heroines are the perfect balance to them, the world is unabashedly violent and intense. If you haven’t read one of her dark romances yet, you haven’t experienced the genre!

“Inessa,” he said in a husky voice, “without you here with me, I’d rather be dead. With you in my heart, and me in yours, I am alive.”


lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.


Reading Order: Scarred Souls series

Raze by Tillie Cole Reap by Tillie Cole
  

#1 ~ Raze: My Review • Ebook • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Reap: My Review • Ebook • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Ravage: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Riot: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#1-2 ~ Scarred Souls: EbookPaperback • Goodreads


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Release Day Review: Eleventh Grave in Moonlight by Darynda Jones

The Curse of Tenth Grave by Darynda Jones
Series: Charley Davidson #11 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: January 24th 2017
Links: Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

My entire life can be summed up in one sentence:
“Well, that didn’t go as planned.”
—T-Shirt

A typical day in the life of Charley Davidson involves cheating husbands, errant wives, missing people, philandering business owners, and, oh yeah…demons, hell hounds, evil gods, and dead people. Lots and lots of dead people. As a part time Private Investigator and full-time Grim Reaper, Charley has to balance the good, the bad, the undead, and those who want her dead.

Now, Charley is learning to make peace with the fact that she is a goddess with all kinds of power and that her own daughter has been born to save the world from total destruction. But the forces of hell are determined to see Charley banished forever to the darkest corners of another dimension. With the son of Satan himself as her husband and world-rocking lover, will Charley be able to defeat the ultimate evil and find a way to have her happily ever after after all?

I’ve been a long-time fan of the Charley Davidson series – it is seriously the bomb dot com!! It’s one of my all-time favorite urban fantasy series out there, and it’s THE funniest series I’ve ever read. I’m never disappointed with each new installment – every single one is hilarious, action-packed, suspenseful, and full of the goodness and sexiness that is Reyes Farrow. And in Eleventh Grave in Moonlight, Charley Davidson, PI extraordinaire and ghost reaper, is up to her usual mystery-solving shenanigans. If you love this series, you don’t want to miss this latest installment! But I have to warn you… the ending will kill you!

Charley has just gotten used to the fact that she’s not just the grim reaper, but also a goddess with immense power. But even though she’s a goddess, she probably shouldn’t have threatened the Big Guy upstairs with world domination… because now she’s got angels following her every move. That doesn’t stop her from her day-time job, and it’s definitely not going to stop her from finding out who’s stalking her best friend’s daughter. It’s never a dull day in Charley’s world, especially when you also have the son of Satan as a husband. 😉

Charley is one of the most endearing heroines I’ve ever read, mainly because of how utterly ridiculous and funny her narrative is. I don’t know how Darynda Jones manages to keep up the incredible humor that’s classic to Charley, but I hope she never stops. I love it! And I love how protective and stubborn she is – there is nothing she won’t do to protect her family. And speaking of family, Charley’s gang is one of my favorite cast of characters to ever read. All of her family and friends, from her bff Cookie to her Uncle Bob, from her husband Reyes to the mysterious Osh, all bring such life to the story. I have to admit though… Reyes is still my ultimate fav – there’s no book boyfriend like him!

In this book, we find out a little more of Reyes’ past and Charley’s abilities as a goddess. I didn’t love this book quite as much as the previous ones, mainly because I felt it moved a little too slow… except for the freaking ending. Mother of all cliffhangers, the ending killed me! I nearly screamed when I got to it. I can’t believe Darynda did this to us – I’m seriously dying for the next book! But other than the ending, it’s another classic Charley Davidson book, full of laughs, quirks, trouble, and craziness. If you’ve been keeping up with the series, you need to get your hands on this book ASAP. And if you haven’t experienced the craziness that is Charley Davidson, you need to start!

4 hearts
lacey


Reading Order: Charley Davidson series

First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones Second Grave on the Left by Darynda Jones Third Grave Dead Ahead by Darynda Jones Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet by Darynda Jones
Fifth Grave Past the Light by Darynda Jones Sixth Grave on the Edge by Darynda Jones Seventh Grave and No Body by Darynda Jones Eighth Grave After Dark by Darynda Jones
 The Dirt on Ninth Grave by Darynda Jones The Curse of Tenth Grave by Darynda Jones 

#1 ~ First Grave on the Right: EbookHardcover • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ Second Grave on the Left: EbookPaperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Third Grave Dead Ahead: EbookPaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Fourth Grave Beneath My Feet: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#5 ~ Fifth Grave Past the Light: EbookHardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#6 ~ Sixth Grave on the Edge: EbookHardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#7 ~ Seventh Grave and No Body: Ebook • Hardcover • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#8 ~ Eighth Grave After Dark: Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#8.5 ~ Brighter Than the Sun: Ebook • Audible • Goodreads (Reyes’ POV novella)
#9 ~ The Dirt on Ninth Grave: My Review • EbookHardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#10 ~ The Curse of Tenth Grave: My Review • Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#11 ~ Eleventh Grave in Moonlight: Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads


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ARC Review: Ravage by Tillie Cole

Ravage by Tillie Cole
Series: Scarred Souls #3 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: August 16th 2016
Links: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Is finding one’s true love worth committing the greatest sacrifice of all?

Taken as a teen, prisoner 194 was stripped of his name and freewill, meticulously honed to be a ruthless machine. Even as he tries to fight his captors hold on him he knows that obedience is the only way to save his sister, who is the one person that keeps him from turning into a monster.

As a young girl Zoya Kostava barely escaped the brutal attack that killed her entire family. Now twenty five she lives in secrecy. That is until she hears her brother also survived and is living with their greatest enemy.

Zoya risks her safety and anonymity to find the brother she thought dead and is captured by a beautiful, brutal man. A man who both captivates and scares her, in him she sees a soul as lost as her own.

They both have so much to lose will they be able to save each other…and survive.

I LOVED the first two books in the Scarred Souls series, so I’m a bit bummed out that I didn’t quite love this third book as much. I enjoyed some parts, but as a whole it just didn’t live up to the previous books – I never really connected with the characters or romance, which was a shame because I was so excited about the main characters. Still, if you’ve been a fan of Tillie Cole’s dark romances like I have, Ravage is just as gritty, intense, and thrilling as you’d expect. The romance just wasn’t believable enough for me to truly love this book like I’d hoped to.

I was insanely excited when I heard Ravage would be about Zoya Kostava. Tillie Cole knows how to entice her readers, because that snippet at the end of book two had me salivating for more. Zoya’s family was murdered when she was a young girl, and she was assumed to be the only survivor until she finds out that one of her brothers is alive. But on her quest to reunite with Zaal, she becomes a pawn to a game bigger than she realizes, one with a target right on her brother. She is kidnapped by a ruthless killer… who turns out to be so much more than he seems.

“We are different. Me weak and you strong. Me a Georgian and you Russian, but our broken hearts are tired and old. Our spirits are low, though not broken. But our souls, though thoroughly tested and hardened through pain, are resilient.” Her lips twitched, and she added, “They are the same.”

Abducted and sold into underground slavery, Valentin and his younger sister were forced into horrifying conditions no child or person should ever go through. Valentin was pumped with drugs to become a mindless killer while his sister was forced into sexual slavery. But as mindless as Valentin became, he never forgot about his sister and only allowed the things to be done to him in order to keep her alive. His latest task given by his “Mistress” is to kill a man named Zaal, and his way in is through Zoya. But even as his captive and being psychologically tortured day after day, Zoya never gives up information on her brother, and her resilience astounds Valentin.

I had survived the massacre that took my family, but lying here, I realized that the years spent away in hiding I was simply existing.
And it took a monster to revive my heart. It took a killer to touch my soul.

I loved Ravage… up until the romance started to kick in. The main reason I wasn’t into the romance was because of how unbelievable it was. I never understood how or why Zoya and Valentin started to fall for each other. Their feelings developed too much too fast, especially after what Valentin makes Zoya go through. I started liking the romance better once Valentin became fully invest in Zoya, but I still couldn’t fully connect.

If you love the Scarred Souls series, chances are you’ll probably enjoy Ravage too. It’s another fast-paced, crazy intense, action-packed installment, just a little weak on the romance side. I’m still incredibly excited for more of the series – Valentin’s sister is the heroine of the next book, and I seriously can’t wait to read it!

3 hearts
lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.


Reading Order: Scarred Souls series

Raze by Tillie Cole Reap by Tillie Cole
  

#1 ~ Raze: My Review • Ebook • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Reap: My Review • Ebook • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Ravage: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Riot: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#1-2 ~ Scarred Souls: EbookPaperback • Goodreads


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