Books, New Release, series, Uncategorized

NEW RELEASE – Oh Fudge by Erin Nicholas

Is this what falling in love feels like?

Oh, Fudge, an all-new sexy and sweet small-town romance from New York Times bestselling author Erin Nicholas is available now!

Paige Asher likes her men the way she likes her coffee: hot, slightly sweet, and only to-go.

The hot friend-of-a-friend she had a scorching single night with was just about perfect–tall, rugged, with a sexy drawl…and on the road out of town by six a.m. the next morning. Long before her mom could start picking out wedding flowers.

But now she can’t stop thinking about the Louisiana boy. His texts make her smile and she suddenly has a craving for gumbo all the time…hot and spicy and far from home.

Mitch Landry had no idea Iowa would be so hospitable to a visitor. He knew the Midwest had a reputation for friendliness but his welcome gift–a sassy, sweet blond who is as no-strings-attached as he is–was a dream come true six months ago.

But why is he still texting her? And why did he jump at the chance to come back to Iowa? And why is he so annoyed by her obvious phobia to commitment this time around? And why is he pretty sure leaving Paige this time is going to be one of the hardest things he’s ever done?

Damn, is this what falling in love feels like?

Oh, fu…fudge.

* a cross-over between the Hot Cakes series and Boys of the Bayou series
* a prequel to Boys of the Bayou book 6

Download your copy today!
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2H6im1J
Apple Books: https://apple.co/3dy3zbX
Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/ohfudge
Nook: https://bit.ly/351EEdc
Kobo: https://bit.ly/31ecs5P

Add OH, FUDGE to Goodreads: https://bit.ly/3meK9fD

About Erin Nicholas


New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Erin Nicholas has been writing romances almost as long as she’s been reading them. To date, she’s written over thirty sexy, contemporary novels that have been described as “toe-curling,” “enchanting,” “steamy,” and “fun.” She adores reluctant heroes, imperfect heroines, and happily ever afters.
Erin lives in the Midwest, where she enjoys spending time with her husband (who only wants to read the sex scenes in her books), her kids (who will never read the sex scenes in her books), and her family and friends (who claim to be “shocked” by the sex scenes in her books).

Connect with Erin
Website: http://bit.ly/2NkB2uF
Facebook: http://bit.ly/2tdTM8e
Twitter: http://bit.ly/2QLd1Pr
Goodreads: http://bit.ly/3a3rnm4
Instagram: http://bit.ly/36NqV9y
Website: http://bit.ly/2FM3Doo
Stay up to date with Erin Nicholas by joining her mailing list:
http://bit.ly/38a5Fv5

Books, Future book announcement, Romance, series, smartypants romance

Smartypants Romance Spring 2021 Authors Announced!!

SPRING LAUNCH 2021

In case you missed it, Smartypants Romance announced their participating author line-up for Spring 2021. The following authors will be contributing new canon titles in the Penny Reid Universe to be released in February and March 2021. We are thrilled to announce some new friends and returning familiar faces. Blurbs, release dates, and cover announcements are coming soon!

Jiffy Kate

Piper Sheldon

Susannah Nix

Allie Winters

Alyson Santos

M.E. Carter

Ann Whynot

Nanxi Wen

Emma Lee Jayne

And Karla Sorensen kicks off the spring launch with STEAL MY MAGNOLIA on February 9th, 2021

Pre-order available:  https://smartypantsromance.com/books/steal-my-magnolia/

 

Find all Smartypants Romance Authors here: https://smartypantsromance.com/authors/

audiobook, Books, New Release, Romance, series

NOW AVAILABLE IN AUDIO! The first three books in the Hot Cakes series by Erin Nicholas

★  ★  ★ AVAILABLE NOW IN AUDIO ★  ★  ★

The first three books in the sexy and sweet Hot Cakes series by New York Times bestselling author Erin Nicholas is available now in audio! 

Listen Today!
Sugarcoated → https://adbl.co/2T4hAoB
Forking Around →  https://adbl.co/31dY7Gz
Making Whoopie → https://adbl.co/3dyvaKg 

Synopsis for Sugarcoated

A hot, funny brother’s best friend rom com . . . with sugar on top!

She’s his best friend’s little sister. He’s known her all his life. He’s practically part of the family. There is nothing either of them could do to surprise the other at this point. Then she showed up in his bedroom in lingerie and asked him to take her V-card.

Okay, that was a surprise.

Aiden is pretty sure Zoe was equally surprised when he told her no.

To say that he didn’t handle it well would be a massive understatement. Almost as massive as the amount of work he’s going to have to do now to convince her that he wants her. Forever.

Right after he tells her that he’s bought the company that’s her bakery’s biggest competitor.

Maybe if he tells her he’s in love with her first, that will help sugarcoat the whole we’re-rivals-in-business-now thing.

So, first “I’m in love with you”, then “take off your clothes”, then “I’m now your business adversary”.

Sure. Piece of cake.

Books, New Release, Romance, romcom, series, Uncategorized

New Release: Take a Number, Wait with Me #4, by Amy Daws

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When Norah needs a date for her parent’s anniversary party and Dean needs a date for his best friend’s wedding, the two agree to something that can help them both out of a bind: Fake Dating.
The only problem? Highly flammable chemistry.
Download Now

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Title: TAKE A NUMBER
Author: Amy Daws
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Release Date: October 15, 2020
Cover Designer: Amy Daws
Cover Photographer: Wander Aguiar
Cover Model:
Philippe Belanger

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Take A Number-front-no apple

Fake dating the cute owner of a bakery Dean is an investor in sounds kind of messy…but messy can be fun.

Norah Donahue wants bakeries not babies, but her matchmaking mother won’t stop trying to play Cupid.

Dean Moser is a cocky stock market savant whose friends are all settling down, leaving Boulder’s infamous ladies’ man all alone.

When Norah needs a fake date for her parents’ anniversary party, her new silent investor is the perfect guy for the job. It seems like a foolproof plan…

That is until Norah decides to break her biggest rule and lock lips with Dean in the middle of the party to spite her meddling mother.

Turns out that Dean and Norah’s chemistry is sizzling hot, and mixing business with pleasure could turn out to be a recipe for disaster.

Or maybe they can have their cake and eat it too

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Download Now
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“OH MY GOSH, AMY! Take A Number has honestly been your BEST, FUNNIEST, and SEXIEST romantic comedy to date, and I absolutely LOVED Dean and Norah’s story! And I truly mean that wholeheartedly! I laughed, smiled, and swooned my romance-loving heart out from start to finish, and absolutely loved every moment of Dean and Norah’s funny, sexy, and swoon-worthy fake-dating story. I know readers are going to lose their minds when they get their hands on this MUST READ romcom.” -Julia Griffis

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“This is a disaster,” I groan and turn to prop my elbows on the bar. “Can I get another champagne, please?”

Dean sidles up next to me as the bartender fills my glass. “What’s up, sugar? I think your dad likes me.”

I pin him with a warning look. “If you add tits to the end of that sugar, your balls must have a death wish.”

“Why so cheery?” Dean asks, hunching over the bar to sip his brown liquor out of a rocks glass. “Did your mother give you a puppy again? That Elaine.”

“My mother invited Nathaniel here tonight,” I state flatly.

“The perfect teeth guy?”

“Yes.”

“So, what’s the big deal?”

I pin him with an accusing look. “She gave him the impression I was here for him. Like I was some lonely sack who couldn’t get a date even if I wanted to. Jesus, this is embarrassing.”

“Relax.” Dean turns to face the party and rests his elbows behind him like he doesn’t have a care in the world. “We’ll just have to break some of your rules.”

“What do you mean?” I grab a nut from the bowl on the bar and chew on it nervously.

“Well, if you want this guy to steer clear, then a little PDA might be in order.”

“What kind of PDA?” If he says kissing, I’ll spontaneously combust.

Dean seems to read my mind and rolls his eyes. “Relax, sugar cake, I mean a little…affection. Maybe we dance. Maybe I put my arms around your waist or play with your hair a little. Or maybe we get practically pornographic, and I waffle your fingers.” He laughs casually. “Something to show your mother this Nate guy doesn’t have a chance.”

I nod thoughtfully as I process what Dean’s just said. He mentioned touching me so casually like it’s no big deal. I suppose it isn’t since he seems to flirt with anything that walks. But I’ve been out of the game for a while now, and I can count on one hand the number of people I’ve been affectionate with, and even those were years ago. Is this really something I can pull off?

“Norah, drink the rest of that champagne. It’s going to be fine.”

I close my eyes, letting his words sink in while feeling anything but fine. “Okay, just promise you won’t try to kiss me. I’m barely holding it together as it is, and if I have to worry about you breaking the ultimate rule, I won’t survive this night.” I tip the rest of the champagne into my mouth.

“Relax, I won’t tongue thrust you in front of all your parents’ friends. I’m a mountain manwhore, but I draw the line at lip raping.”

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paperback giveaway-genericCheck out Amy’s Facebook page for an awesome giveaway!

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Amy Daws Head Shot-sizedown

Amy Daws is an Amazon Top 13 bestselling author of sexy, contemporary romance novels. She enjoys writing love stories that take place in America, as well as across the pond in England. When Amy is not writing in a tire shop waiting room, she’s watching Gilmore Girls, or singing karaoke in the living room with her daughter while Daddy smiles awkwardly from a distance. For more of Amy’s work, visit: http://www.amydawsauthor.com

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Book Review, Books, Christmas, netgalley, New Release, Romance

Book Review: In a Holidaze by Christina Lauren

5 out of 5 spectacularly seasonal stars

I never read blubs, especially from authors that I love, because I trust them to tell me a good story. In the case of Christina Lauren, I trust them to give me an excellent story, and this is exactly what I got with In a Holidaze.

Here’s the official description: “It’s the most wonderful time of the year . . . but not for Maelyn Jones. She’s living with her parents, hates her going-nowhere job and has just made a romantic error of epic proportions.

But perhaps worst of all, this is the last Christmas Mae will be at her favourite place in the world – the snowy cabin where she and her family have spent every holiday since she was born. Mentally melting down as she drives away for the final time, Mae throws out what she thinks is a simple plea to the universe: Please. Show me what will make me happy.

The next thing she knows, everything goes black . . . When Mae gasps awake, she’s back on an airplane, beginning the same holiday all over again. With one hilarious disaster after another sending her back to the plane, Mae must figure out how to break free of the strange time loop – and finally get her true love under the mistletoe.

Jam-packed with yuletide cheer, an unforgettable cast of characters, and Christina Lauren’s trademark hilarious hijinks, this swoon-worthy romantic read will make you believe in the power of wishes and the magic of the holidays.

Since I don’t read blurbs, I had no idea what I was getting into with In a Holidaze, but it ended up being precisely my cup of tea. It starts off with a normal holiday gathering, and all of a sudden, there’s time travel involved! This is also the story of two people who have known each other as friends their entire lives, and I love a couple with a complicated history! There is a big, wonderful cast of characters in addition to Maelyn and Andrew. Sometimes it’s difficult for me to keep track of who’s who in books like this, but these characters were so delightful. It was so fun getting to know them, and they were very easy to distinguish from one another.

Since the main character, Maelyn, bounces back in time and repeats the Christmas holidays over and over again, there is an element of suspense throughout the last half of the book, as you wait to find out if she’s going to lose everything she’s gained in the current go-round by ending back on the plane. I kept thinking “Don’t go back! Don’t go back!” and I will definitely not spoil it for you. But if you’ve read a Christina Lauren book before, you know that they can put you through a lot of heartache and drama and angst, but they don’t leave you there! I loved this book so much that I’m going to buy it on audio. I don’t always have time to reread a book, but there’s always time to listen to one!

Thanks to the Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book.

Books, New Release, Romance, series

New Release! Lies & Lullabies, Hush Note series #1, by Sarina Bowen

Summer nights and star-crossed lovers! From USA Today bestselling author Sarina Bowen.

Once upon a time, he gave me a summer of friendship, followed by one perfect night. We shared a lot during our short time together. But he skipped a few crucial details. 

I didn’t know he was a rock star.

I didn’t know his real name.

Neither of us knew I’d get pregnant.

And I sure never expected to see him again.

Five years later, his tour bus pulls up in Nest Lake, Maine. My little world is about to be shattered by loud music and the pounding of my own foolish heart.

All Purchase Links

SERIES PAGE https://www.subscribepage.com/hushnote

All links in one spot → https://shor.by/hush-note

🎵Audible →  https://geni.us/Audible-LandL 

🎵Paperback →  https://geni.us/Paperback-LandL

🎵Amazon →  https://geni.us/Amazon-LandL 

🎵Apple →  https://geni.us/apple-LandL 

🎵Kobo →  https://geni.us/kobo-LandL 

🎵Nook →  https://geni.us/Nook-LandL

🎵Google →  https://geni.us/Google-LandL   

Excerpt

I watched Kira ride off, wondering what the hell had just happened. Sure, she probably guessed that I wrote that song about her. But she’d only heard the first few bars before sprinting away like I was the devil himself.

Spinning around, I located the lodge’s bike shed. I rolled a bike out and hopped on. The seat was too low for me, so I had to stand up on the pedals. 

But no matter. I rode off after Kira, my first time on a real bike in years. 

The road curved around to the left, and Kira’s house soon came into view. She was sitting on the front steps. She didn’t look all that surprised to see me biking toward her, but the look of pain on her face was so vivid that I could feel it in my gut. Something was wrong, and I still didn’t know what.

“Feel any better?”

She shook her head, and I thought I saw fear in her eyes.

“Kira,” I said softly. “I know you want me to leave you alone right now, but I can’t—our conversation isn’t over. In twenty-four hours I’ll be back on that bus. Honestly, you’re scaring me. When I last saw you, things seemed like they were on the upswing for you. When I said I think about you all the time, I didn’t mean to be a creeper. I meant that I was picturing a happy ever after for you.”

“Mama!” a little voice called from beyond the screen door.

At the sound of it, Kira’s whole body went rigid. And then tears spilled down her cheeks.

I heard little footsteps pounding onto the screened porch. And then a small set of hands became visible against the door just behind Kira. Quick as a flash, Kira leapt to her feet and spun around, darting through the door. It closed with a bang behind her.

“Whoa,” a man’s voice said. “Deep breaths, Kiki. What did he say?”

The hair stood up on my neck. I dropped the bicycle and covered the distance to the stoop in three paces. Leaping up, I opened the screen door. A little girl stood there, with fair, curly hair and blue-green eyes. I was no good with kids’ ages. She wasn’t an infant, but she wasn’t school-aged either. There was a babyish fullness to her face. She was three? Four? Five? I looked up at Kira.

“I’m so sorry,” she squeaked.

That’s when I finally understood. And I almost couldn’t draw breath to speak again. “I… She… What the fuck, Kira?” 

“That’s a very bad word,” the little girl said, accusation in her voice.

“Sorry,” I said automatically. I raised my eyes to Kira’s. “You… She…” 

I couldn’t think. There was pressure in my ears, and my pulse was ragged. Dizzy, I thought, absently, putting one hand on the door jamb for support.

“Breathe, man,” the guy behind Kira said. He wore a bright pink polo shirt and an expression of concern. “Sit down. Seriously, before you crash.”

I bent over and grabbed my knees. “Oh my God.” The only thing I could hear was my own ragged breathing and Kira’s choked sobs.

“Mama!” a little voice said, full of alarm. “Don’t cry!”

The scary moment stretched on, until I heard yet another bicycle approaching outside. A moment later, another male voice called out, “Knock-knock!”

The pink-polo-shirt guy answered him, his voice full of false cheer. “Hi, Luke!” Under his breath he added, “Wow. It’s raining men.” Then he scooped the little girl up in his arms, stepped around me, and walked out the screen door. It closed behind him with a bang.

I just stood there, staring at my shoes, trying to catch my breath. Kira’s shoes moved into my visual field, but I wasn’t ready to talk to her yet. Not until my head could clear. Which would probably be sometime next week. 

We stood here, awkward and quiet for a couple of long minutes. There was some low-key chatter outside, and then I heard the sound of the bicycle departing. 

The guy in the polo shirt came back inside, alone. 

“You’re her brother.” I coughed, trying to reconstruct the world into a rational place.

“Yup,” the guy said. “Uncle Adam.”

“Where is Vivi?” Kira asked, her voice raw.

“Luke is taking her for a little bike ride. There may be ice cream involved.”

“Really, Adam?” Kira moved quickly to peer through the screen. “But that’s awkward.”

“Oh, honey. We have first class tickets on the HMS Awkward today. And the ship has sailed. Luke even had a pink helmet for her, Kiki. Just go with it, okay? I told him you were having a moment.”

I straightened up. “She’s having a moment,” I spat out. “Is that what this is?” My pulse was still pounding in my ears, but now from anger instead of shock.

Kira was as pale as a sheet. “I was going to tell you today.” She pulled a photo out of her pocket. “Here. I was trying to find a way.”

I snatched the picture from her hand. “She’s, what, four?” The photo shook as I tried to look at it. The little girl smiled up at the camera, a stuffed animal in her hands. It was purple. Somehow this detail made it all the more real. The little girl in the photo was clutching the purple cat I’d won at the fair all those years ago.

Books, New Release, Romance, series, Uncategorized

New Release! Semi-Sweet on You, Hot Cakes #4, by Erin Nicholas

She broke his heart ten years ago.

Now he’s back — and her new boss.

Semi-Sweet On You, an all-new irresistible romantic comedy from New York Times bestselling author Erin Nicholas is available now!

A semi-sweet second-chance rom com!

She broke his heart ten years ago.

Now he’s back — and her new boss.

And she might still be semi in love with him.

But that’s no problem, right? They can keep it professional.

Until her grandmother gets involved.

She’s thrilled to think that Whitney and Cam are still in love. And invites him to move in with her…and Whitney.

Of course, Whitney can handle that too. Yeah, everything is fine. Just fine.

Until Cam makes it clear that he’s all in.

Having him back is very sweet, but can she really have it all? Or will it all crumble around her?

Download your copy today!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/39aTn7g

Apple Books: https://apple.co/2WzRWdn

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/semisweet

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2CKTiej

Google Play: https://bit.ly/2WvTy8c

Add SEMI-SWEET ON YOU to Goodreads: https://bit.ly/2ZDPmVH

Excerpt:

He leaned in, close enough that she could feel his breath on her lips when he said, “Let me kiss you.”

Oh damn. She wanted that. She wanted it so much. She was weak.

“I—” she started.

“The tea is getting cold!” Didi bellowed from the kitchen.

Whitney and Cam stilled. Then she felt him sigh. But he didn’t pull back. “You going to let me do this or not?”

He was already practically kissing her. When his lips moved as he spoke, they brushed hers ever so lightly. His body heat surrounded her. She swore she could feel his heartbeat pounding. Or maybe that was hers.

They both clearly wanted this. She certainly wasn’t pushing him away or stepping back. But the only actual connection was his hand on her face. And their mingling breaths.

Clearly he was going to insist that she make this decision. He wasn’t going to just sweep her up and kiss the hell out of her before she could protest and then let the chemistry take over.

“Whit,” he said, his voice low and rough. “Push me back or pull me closer.”

She slid her hands up to his chest, not sure until the last moment if she was going to fist his shirt and pull him in or push him away.

Cam, however, didn’t look surprised when she pushed.

He let go and stepped back though. He didn’t seem angry or even frustrated. It seemed that he’d been expecting her reaction actually.

“Okay,” he finally said.

She wet her lips. “Thanks,” she said, hoarsely. And she meant it. She appreciated that he was giving her these choices. Kind of.

It would be a lot easier to just climb him like a tree and give in to everything zipping between them if he’d just back her up against the wall, seal his mouth over hers, and start running his big hands over her body. Then she could pretend she was just caught up in the moment and enjoy the hell out of it without actually admitting she wanted any of that.

Which he knew.

She could see it.

He knew that she wanted him, but that she didn’t want to admit it.

So, of course, he was going to make her confess before he did anything more.

“In case you’ve forgotten, I’m very stubborn,” he said.

Whitney gave him a nod. “I remember.”

“And something you should know about me and the past ten years,” he said, holding her gaze steadily, “I’ve also gotten very used to winning. “

That actually made her heart trip and her inner muscles clench.

See, she should really feel trepidation at that implied promise from him. But she didn’t.

“I’ll keep that in mind,” she said, trying desperately not to act excited about the idea of him trying again and again to get close to her.

He looked at her for a long moment and a thought flickered through her mind—he knows.

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Erin Nicholas has been writing romances almost as long as she’s been reading them. To date, she’s written over thirty sexy, contemporary novels that have been described as “toe-curling,” “enchanting,” “steamy,” and “fun.” She adores reluctant heroes, imperfect heroines, and happily ever afters.

About Erin Nicholas

Erin lives in the Midwest, where she enjoys spending time with her husband (who only wants to read the sex scenes in her books), her kids (who will never read the sex scenes in her books), and her family and friends (who claim to be “shocked” by the sex scenes in her books).

Connect with Erin

Website: http://bit.ly/2NkB2uF

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2tdTM8e

Twitter: http://bit.ly/2QLd1Pr

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/3a3rnm4

Instagram: http://bit.ly/36NqV9y
Website: http://bit.ly/2FM3Doo
Stay up to date with Erin Nicholas by joining her mailing list:
http://bit.ly/38a5Fv5

Romance

Book Review: This Is Love by Melissa Foster

Stars: 2 out of 5

This is Love is book two in Melissa Foster’s Harmony Pointe series. This series is a spin off of her Sugar Lake trio series. I REALLY enjoyed Sugar Lake so like every fan, I continued to read the stories of these fun characters.

This book is the story of famed actress, Remington Aldrich (aka Remi Devine) and her “HottieGuard” Mason. In a previous book we learn Remi has been victim to a stalker. This story takes us through a bit of a “who done it” as we enjoy the slow-burn of these two characters. At times I felt certain segments could have used more development and others were somewhat cheesy. Other segments were more complete and satisfying. To get the full experience, I would start by power reading the Sugar Lake books. If you are looking for an entertaining summer read that moves fast and keeps you flipping pages, I would recommend!

 

by Rebecca

Book Review, Books, Kindle Unlimited, New Release, Romance, series, smartypants romance, Uncategorized

BLOG TOUR: Smartypants Romance release, Stranger Ranger, Park Ranger series #2, by Daisy Prescott – now available in KU

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Stranger Ranger, an all-new standalone contemporary romance from USA Today bestselling author Daisy Prescott, is now available in Kindle Unlimited!

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This is the final release in the Smartypants Romance Spring 2020 launch, and I’ve read every one. Only a few of them have gotten five stars from me, and Stranger Ranger is one of them. I also loved the first book in this series, Happy Trail, which is the story of Olive and Jay, a ranger at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Stranger Ranger is about Odin and Daphne, who is a co-worker of Jay’s.

There is so much to love about this story. Daphne and Odin are two self-professed weirdos, and I can totally relate. I saw a lot of myself in Daphne (she’s even a Hufflepuff, like me!) She can be awkward, she is a rule-follower, she’s trying to overcome a lifetime of expectations and become who she wants to be, she loves to learn and travel and have new experiences. Also, “loopy” Daphne is just adorable. I feel like we just scratched the surface of who she is, and where she came from, and I would have loved to know even more about her. That is the sign of a great character.

I liked Odin a lot, and would have liked to know more of his backstory, as well. It was touched on, but I definitely would have read a few more chapters about how he became who he is, and questionable choices in his past that he is trying to overcome. We meet his family briefly, and find out a bit about why he’s returned to his home in the mountains after being away for several years. I love a good origin story, and I wanted more of Odin’s!

There wasn’t a lot of steam to this story, which is absolutely fine. It was sweet, with a bit of a slow burn that I wouldn’t have minded being even slower. 🙂 They got to know each other as we all do, in little bits and pieces, as they spent more time together. There wasn’t a big conflict or a huge reveal of secrets, or a giant misunderstanding that they had to struggle to overcome. I’ve read a few books lately where there was a conflict that seemed manufactured just for the angst factor, and it was wonderful to not have that here.

I didn’t want this book to end. I could have stayed up late to finish it, but I wanted to save the last few chapters for the next day so I could extend my time with it just a little bit. I hope there are many more Park Ranger books to come!

New park ranger Daphne Baum is a reformed good girl. Breaking free from her overbearing family as soon as she turned eighteen, she’s been on her own ever since. The life of a park ranger, moving from park to park, suits her just fine. Though still a rule follower, she’s okay with a little sin in her life.

Every generation of Hill men has its black sheep. The general consensus among the family is that Odin Hill is the lucky bastard this go around. At seventeen, he blew out of town like an angry tornado only to return fifteen years later withdrawn and secretive. Living like a recluse in the hollows in the Smoky Mountains, he’s happy to keep to himself and is content to let locals believe he’s the town weirdo. Odin prefers the company of his pet pig to the nosy citizens of Green Valley.

When Daphne discovers Odin might be committing nefarious deeds on park land, she vows to find out the truth behind the handsome, yet chaotic, loner. Will the stranger help the ranger discover the difference between being good and doing the right thing? Or will they find themselves on opposite sides of love?

‘Stranger Ranger’ is a full-length contemporary romance, can be read as a standalone, and is book #2 in the Park Ranger series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

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Download your copy of Stranger Ranger TODAY!

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/368n8SR

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/38fDgUf

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2RdgqHi

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2G9DccG

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Check out Happy Trail, book 1 in the Park Ranger series of standalones, FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

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Excerpt

By early afternoon, the crowd at the farmers’ market fades, leaving only stragglers, bargainers, and tourists sampling the charms of small town life.

I’ve had enough people for the week I’m looking forward to the quiet of my own company. All the talking and friendly chatter exhaust me. You’d think vegetables would sell themselves given they’re pretty self-explanatory. Yet folks wanna hear a story about a carrot being grown from the guy who pulled it out of the dirt himself. So I play my part of the happy farmer at the stand. It’s my bad luck I’ve always been charming. Part of my DNA.

My family has lived in the mountains surrounding Green Valley longer than anyone around here can remember. Before there was a National Park or even a Cades Cove, the Hills had established a homestead in the Smokies straddling Tennessee and North Carolina.

Because our last name is Hill, some people like to joke we put the hill in hillbilly. Jethro Winston for example. He’s hysterical. Some people think they have a sense of humor when they’re just being mean-spirited. As my Nannie Ida always says, glass houses provide good views, but then again, so do mirrors.

This is why I prefer the company of Patsy over most folks. She’s smart, a good listener, tidy, and doesn’t give a damn about my family and reputation. She has more class than a lot of the gossips and Sunday church-goers around here.

After I consolidate the remaining produce into crates and load up the van, I fold the tables and collapse my tent. While I work, the face of the brunette ranger floats through my mind.

She looked familiar but I didn’t recognize her name. It isn’t likely our paths have crossed. I don’t get out much and I’m not hanging around the bars or the visitor center in Cades Cove. Normally, one of my cousins covers the stand at the weekly farmers’ market and I can avoid the crowds. This is what happens when I let my guard down and am forced to engage with the public. I get iceberg and Bible quotes. I’ve never been a fan of either.

Bothered I’m still thinking about her, I close and lock up the van.

“Come on Patsy, let’s go for a walk.”

She gives a happy snort and steps closer to where her leash hangs on the top rail of her pen.

When the two of us stroll through town, folks stare. It’s worse when they insist on sharing a comment, tell the same old joke, and, in general, make a fuss. Honestly, I assume at this point people seeing the two of us together would be old news around here.

Guess some folks don’t have enough going on in their lives that they need to make commentary about people minding their own damn business.

I don’t understand what the big deal is about a man walking his pig.

Patsy’s excellent on a leash. Doesn’t pull. Has never instigated fights with dogs. Hasn’t bit anyone. Doesn’t do her business in the middle of the sidewalk. In my mind, she’s much better mannered than any old hound dog.

She’s pretty darn perfect in every conceivable way.

Except the one time she trampled Mrs. MacClure’s flower bed.

Even that was my fault for not paying closer attention to where we were walking.

If I had to find fault with her, Patsy thinks she’s in charge. And she’s a little more than spoiled. I only have myself to blame.

“Clarice, please tell me you see that man walking his pig.” A woman shouts to her friend and points from about three feet away.

“I’m not invisible,” I tell her with a flat smile.

“Oh dear.” Her companion rolls her eyes. “You’re a tall drink of cool water, aren’t you?”

The question is rhetorical. Being compared to a refreshing beverage doesn’t require a response, so I remain quiet. Patsy tugs on her leash and releases a frustrated snort that we’ve stopped walking.

“You two have a nice day, m‘kay.” I step off the sidewalk to pass them.

I’d like to say their behavior is atypical. If I hear “You’re like the Jolly Green Giant. Only less green” one more time …

For the record, I am not jolly.

There must be something in the well water around here. We grow ‘em tall in Green Valley.

Does a pig need to be walked on leash for health and exercise? No.

I’m the only weirdo in all of Green Valley who likes to take my daily constitutional accompanied by a sow. Not even Cletus Winston is as much of an oddball as I am. And that’s saying something.

He’s only interested in pigs and boar in terms of sausage. In my opinion, he’s missing out. If we were friends, or even friendly acquaintances, I might suggest we partner up. Truffle salami can be incredible. Or so I remember. I don’t eat pork anymore. Not since I’ve had Patsy. I’d be offended if she ate human body parts around me.

Hogs will eat pretty much anything you give them. A few years ago a pig farmer went missing. Wife said he ran off with his mistress. Everyone believed her until his gold tooth turned up in the muck and mud of their hog pens. Macabre, but true.

I don’t eat pork and Patsy doesn’t eat me. It’s an unspoken pact between us.

Not that she’s some sort of demon pig crazed with bloodlust. Not at all. She’s the best pig in eastern Tennessee. Don’t need a blue ribbon from the state fair to make it true.

This leisurely stroll around town is all part of my ruse.

If someone sees us ambling someplace we don’t belong, they’ll leave us alone, which is the entire point.

There’s freedom in being a weirdo. Folks keep their distance. Sure, there are the asinine comments, but for the most part they assume I’m dim-witted or crazy. Fine by me. With or without my porcine sidekick, I’ve always been different. I learned early on that people like to form and hold onto their own opinions. Pointless to try to change someone’s mind. What they think of me is their problem, not mine.

About Daisy Prescott

Born and raised in San Diego, Daisy currently lives in a real life Stars Hollow in the Boston suburbs with her husband, their rescue dog, Mulder, and an imaginary house goat. When not writing about herself in the third person, Daisy can be found traveling, gardening, baking, or lost in a good book.

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BLOG TOUR: Smartypants Romance New Release: Upsy Daisy by Chelsie Edwards, book #1 in the Higher Learning series! Now available in Kindle Unlimited

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College, cookies, capers, Oh my!

Upsy Daisy, an all-new first love college romance from debut author Chelsie Edwards, is now available in Kindle Unlimited!

upsy-daisy

Daisy Payton has everything.

Exceptional grades.

Impeccable clothes.

Model family.

But perfection comes at a high cost, and Daisy is wilting. Determined to use college as her chance to bloom anew, she’s focused on only one thing, leaving the Payton name behind and forging her own path—even if she has to tell the teeniest of fibs to do it.

Trevor Boone has nothing.

Abandoned as a child.

Raised by distant relatives.

Constantly reminded he’s a burden.

Trevor’s lived at the edges of opulence for years, having all he’s ever desired dangled just out of reach. But his ambition is finally about to pay off and nothing will distract him from his goal—finishing college top of his class and starting life, on his own terms.

When Daisy and Trevor meet it’s clear from the start that they’ll tempt each other to distraction, can they learn to put their ambitions aside and fall or will they lose it all?

‘Upsy Daisy’ is a full-length romance, can be read as a standalone, and is book #1 in the Higher Learning series, Green Valley World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

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Excerpt

My room was small with pale yellow walls, one window on the far wall, two closets, two raised beds, and a single dresser. I’d beaten my roommate there and claimed the bed closest to the window. We’d made quick work of the cleaning and had gotten a good way through the decorating and hanging my clothes before Dolly flopped on the bed and called me to sit next to her.

I knew what was coming next. It was one of my favorite Dolly speeches. It was the “Today You Become a Woman” speech. My conservative guess was I’d become a woman twenty-three times in the last few years. It’d happened when I’d gotten my driver’s license, when I’d gotten asked to the junior prom, when I’d gone to the senior prom, graduation day … you get the drift. Dolly was good with marking milestones with big speeches.

She’d begin gently but I knew it wouldn’t stay gentle for very long, she would poke and pry and try to get me to cry and suddenly I was tired and ready for her to go.

“Do you like your room?” she asked innocuously.

I nodded, because I knew she hated when I nodded. Instead of reacting she simply stared and stared until I said, “Yes, it’s nice, a bit small for two people but I’m sure my roommate will be nice and we will make do,” I said it more hoping than knowing.

Dolly smiled, and then after a moment said, “Don’t be angry with your father …”

I stared at her confused, waiting for her to go on. She seemed to be struggling for words and so I patted her leg reassuringly. “Don’t worry, I’ll write him a letter. Or better yet, I think I saw a pay phone at the end of the hall, I’ll call him and tell him I’m not angry he couldn’t make the trip.”

She sighed. “No, Daisy, I know you’re not angry over that.”

There was another pause and she took a deep breath. “Daddy wanted to surprise you. He thought you might be more comfortable in your own room here since you have your own room at home.”

I continued to stare at her. “He called in a favor with one of his friends at the Alumni Association and they made special accommodations for you … someone will be by to collect the extra bed—”

“No,” I said more forcefully than I intended. I wasn’t angry with Dolly.

Although she had kept this from me until now, so maybe I should’ve been. In fact I definitely should’ve been.

“Dolly, why didn’t you tell me?”

“I knew it would make you upset. There is no use trying to change what’s done.”

“No use? Would make me upset? I am way past upset. I don’t want special accommodations. I don’t want my own room. I don’t want to be treated differently,” I hollered.

“Daisy, calm down. This isn’t the end of the world.”

How could I explain that it wasn’t the end of the world, it was a continuation of the same world.

And that was the problem.

I wanted to be Daisy Payton here, not style=”font-weight: 400;”>Daisy Payton.

Because Daisy Payton played a mean game of spades, and knew how to cornrow in every direction. She had a natural head for figures, and could even do three digit multiplication in her head. She loved the Temptations and could cut a rug on the dance floor with the best of them. She could bake better than your eighty-five-year-old granny. She studied geography for fun. She got a four-point-oh during the worst year of her life. She was good with potted plants but terrible in the garden; weeds were foes she could not defeat. She’d been kissed twice. Once was awful and once was amazing, so amazing that she did it again, and then again—so really four times, but three of the kisses happened in one session. And she wanted opportunities to roll that fifty-fifty dice again to find out how the next kiss would be.

But Daisy Payton?

Daisy Payton had a powerful father. (That poor man.)

Daisy Payton was a rich girl. (She’s not but it doesn’t matter if people think you are.)

She had a dead brother, who got murdered in Vietnam. (What a useless war.)

Daisy Payton had a mother who was there and then *poof* was gone from breast cancer. (Poor Daisy.)

Daisy Payton went from rich girl to poor girl. Poor little rich girl that everyone looked at with pity.

And she hated it.

She hated that everyone, everyone thought they knew her.

She hated the assumption that if they hurt with her, or worse, for her, then it made the pain better, as if that made it the entire community’s pain; when it absolutely didn’t.

She hated that she still read and reread the letters from her brother. Some of the pages had wrinkles from being crumpled in fits of anger because oh, she was so angry when he left. And then she felt guilty and stupid and horrified that she’d almost destroyed his letters when they were all that was left. Some were starting to show signs of age, yellow in some spots and the ink fading in others, and she hated that too because how could so much time have passed without him?

And she hated that her mother had been helping her shop for homecoming dresses and was buried before Thanksgiving. It had spread so fast.

No junior prom dress shopping. No junior prom.

She barely remembered her senior year.

She hated that her friends and family and perfect strangers spoke to her in hushed tones and assumed she was broken.

She hated that they were right.

Because the ache inside her was relentless. It constantly missed her brother. It constantly missed her mother. It would not abate. It could not be moved. She was thoroughly, horribly, broken and all that brokenness was put up for examination by an entire town. That just couldn’t happen here.

For the whole of her life, the whole of Green Valley had treated her differently, and she absolutely hated it.

But she wasn’t in Green Valley now. And Daisy Payton had a plan.

About Chelsie Edwards

Chelsie Edwards’ mother declared her a smarty-pants at 4 years old; now she gets to be one professionally. She manages project timelines by day and book timelines by night. She resides in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. and has no dogs, fish, or birds, but her neighbors cat “Buddy” keeps her company by sunbathing on her porch. Her debut novella is scheduled to be released Spring 2020 on Smartypants Romance and will chronicle Daisy and Trevor’s journey.

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