Books, Kindle Unlimited, New Release, Romance, series, smartypants romance

BLOG TOUR!! New Smartypants Romance release! Max About Ewe, Common Threads #1, by Susannah Nix

Mad About Ewe, an all-new heartwarming second-chance romance from Susannah Nix, is now available in Kindle Unlimited! 

REVIEW: Thanks to the author and Smartypants Romance for the opportunity to read and review this book.

This book had great potential. I don’t read blurbs and I have never read this author. But I love SPR, so I was all in! Unfortunately this book seemed like a YA romance to me.

The good:

The couple was in their late 40s/early 50s. MY AGE! It’s so rare to find that. There are only a couple authors I know that write this age well.

Second chance romance. It’s one of my very favorite tropes, especially if the couple has a complicated history! These two knew each other in high school. She had a crush on him, he hardly knew she existed. We’ve all been there, right?

The connection to the Knitting in the City world. I am such a big fan of Penny Reid, and I’ve read most of the SPR books. Some do a better job with connecting to the world they’re written in than others. For some, a mere mention of a beloved character seems to be all they think is needed. Others are COMPLETELY entrenched in that world. (Guess which one I prefer?!?)

Post-divorce, grown kids, figuring out life on your own, yes. I’m here for it.

The bad:

I hate being negative in my words and in my reviews. I hate being negative in my life! I am like Dawn in this way. I don’t want to step on anyone’s toes or hurt anyone’s feelings. I’d rather not say anything at all. This is not a good way to be, and I’m working on it.

Dawn and Mike both have this issue! So much of their inner monologue was them not wanting to use their words because they were projecting their own feelings on the other. I found this annoying while at the same time completely empathizing with it. I feel this way in life, I don’t want my characters to feel that way! Just a personal preference.

There was the old standby “I found this out by accident” scenario. I hate this in books. However, I will say that they didn’t just sweep it under the rug, they did deal with it. But I prefer more depth in my Big Conflict.

The sexy times were not sexy to me. “I wanted him to plow me like an open field.” No.

It read like YA fiction. It was a good story, but I’d hoped for more. Also the promo materials pictured a couple that was so obviously not in the proper age group. It’s a small thing, but important to me. If the book is about a 51 year old woman, please don’t have the one pictured not even be 30.

I was super happy it didn’t end with an engagement, though. I’m so tired of that in romance books.

This will not stop me from reading this author’s work. I was just disappointed in what could have really been an excellent story for those of us more “seasoned” readers.

Dawn Botstein is doing just fine after her divorce, thank you very much.

She’s got her yarn store to run, her house to herself for the first time in her life, and no use for men anymore. That is until the hottie silver fox who walks into her store turns out to be her old high school crush—the guy who rejected her 30 years ago.

No way is she going to lose her head over him this time, no matter how well he wears that salt-and-pepper lumberjack beard. Okay, so he’s the opposite of her ex in every way, and his attention gives her a thrill she thought she’d never feel again. She’s not risking her heart again.

Mike Pilota is having a mid-life crisis.

Only instead of buying a red sports car he can’t afford and dressing like a 25-year-old who’s time-traveled from the 1990s, he quit his job after his second divorce to move closer to his recently widowed mother.

He didn’t expect to run into Dawn again, but as soon as he lays eyes on her he’s utterly smitten. So he sets out to make up for past mistakes and prove he can be the kind of man she deserves.

But is it too late for second chances? Or will these two lonely hearts find a way back to each other?

‘Mad About Ewe’ is a full-length contemporary romance and can be read as a standalone. Book #1 in the Common Threads series, Seduction in the City World, Penny Reid Book Universe.  

Read for FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

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Amazon Print: https://amzn.to/3l7pbQf

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

Audiobook: Coming later this year! 

Excerpt

Mike Pilota sent you a friend request.

I’d received the notification a week ago but still hadn’t responded. I’d just left it hanging there, unanswered. Ignored.

Out of spite? Perhaps a little. After he’d rejected me yet again, I had to admit I enjoyed the thought of Mike getting a taste of that same rejection for once. I liked to picture him sitting at home, futilely checking his notifications day after day, waiting for a reply that would never come.

I wanted him to know that I wasn’t desperate for his attention and would not be begging for treats like a pet Labrador. I couldn’t care less whether I ever spoke to Mike again.

Of course, it was just as likely he’d forgotten he even sent the request by now. There was no reason to assume he was in any way invested in my response.

I couldn’t imagine why he’d sent it in the first place. Why now? Why would you send a friend request to someone you’d brushed off?

I hadn’t even realized Mike was active on Facebook, which was probably just as well. It had saved me from years of pathetic cyberstalking. And it would be pathetic to be hung up on a man you’d had a childish crush on thirty years ago.

Good thing I wasn’t.

I’d meant what I’d said about being done with Mike Pilota. Finito. Over and out. So long, and thanks for all the fish.

So it was annoying in the extreme when I walked into The Old House Pub and saw him sitting next to Angie. My steps, which had been confident and quick as I entered the bar, faltered as I recognized him.

How? Why? What the blazing hell was Mike doing here?

My eyes narrowed as they homed in on my best friend, the obvious answer to all my questions. She must have recruited Mike for her reunion committee. And I could guess why.

It was clearly some misguided attempt to force another reunion between me and Mike in the hopes that, against all odds, this time sparks would finally fly, and he’d realize his secret attraction to me which he’d been repressing all these years.

Did I mention Angie was a bit of a fantasist?

Obviously, there was no way any of that would happen. The far more likely scenario was that Mike and I would try our level best to ignore each other’s existence while pretending there was no lingering awkwardness between us.

That was my game plan anyway. Mike could do what he liked.

Gathering a deep breath, I forced my feet to carry me to the table where Mike and Angie were seated. There were six chairs, and I set my sights on the one farthest from Mike.

Angie spotted my approach immediately and called out a greeting. Mike looked up, and our eyes caught and held for a charged second before I forcibly tore my gaze away to pin my best friend with an accusatory glare. Angie grinned back at me and shrugged, as if she knew exactly what she’d done wrong and didn’t care one bit.

Before I could claim the chair diagonally across from Mike, he leapt to his feet. “Here, you probably want to sit next to Angie,” he said, and held his own chair out for me.

I had no choice but to accept his offer at that point without looking like an ill-mannered ingrate. Mumbling my thanks, I draped my purse over the back of the chair and sat down.

To my consternation, Mike took the seat right next to me at the head of the table. He was so close our knees brushed as he scooted his chair forward, and I jerked my legs away from him as if I’d been zapped with electricity.

“It’s good to see you again,” he said in that warm, gravelly voice that used to make my limbs quiver like a gelatin mold on a mechanical bull. Fortunately, I was completely over my childish infatuation with him, and therefore impervious to his sexy man voice.

I looked up to find him smiling at me, his lips curved invitingly and framed by his neatly trimmed beard, and my heart gave a little involuntary jump in my chest.

Well, crud.

Perhaps I wasn’t quite as over Mike as I’d hoped. 

About Susannah Nix

Susannah Nix is an award-winning author of contemporary romances featuring smart women and swoony men, including the Chemistry Lessons series of romcoms about women who work in STEM fields and the Starstruck series of movie star romances. 

Susannah resides in Texas with her husband, two ornery cats, and a flatulent pit bull. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, cooking, knitting, watching stupid amounts of television, and getting distracted by Tumblr. She is also a powerlifter who can deadlift as much as Captain America weighs.

Find Susannah Nix online

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B072KHZS5W 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/susannahnix/ 

Facebook Reader Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/160037207970579/ 

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/susannah-nix 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/susannahnixauthor/ 

Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16880740.Susannah_Nix 

Twitter: @Susannah_Nix 

Website: https://www.susannahnix.com/ 

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

UPDATE: Smartypants Romance New Release, Cutie and the Beast, book #3 in the Cipher Office series, by M. E. Carter now available in Kindle Unlimited!

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Welcome back to Weight Expectations, where the unexpected is likely to happen.

Cutie and the Beast, an all-new roommates-to-lovers romantic comedy from M.E. Carter, is now available in Kindle Unlimited!

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Living with her mother seemed like a good idea at the time. But Elliott Donovan’s living arrangements are not working for her anymore. Desperate to get back on her financial feet after a divorce and out from under her mother’s thumb, Elliott takes a job in the child care center at Weight Expectations, a local gym.

It has everything she needs – family friendly hours, more pay than she expected, and a super cute trainer who just happens to have part of his house for rent.

Abel DiSoto was living the good life until his wife walked out taking half of the family income with her. The blow to his ego was bad enough, but after a fire at the gym scattered Abel’s clients, and consequently his commissions, he’s stuck figuring out how to make ends meet, too. Renting out the master suite of his house to his new co-worker seems like an easy solution. They’re both mature adults, they both have eight-year-old daughters, and their work schedules coordinate so they can lend each other a helping hand to ease the burden of single parenthood.

The only downside? Living like a blended family when you’re not actually a family can present some challenges.

Welcome back to Weight Expectations, where the unexpected is likely to happen.

‘Cutie and the Beast’ is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book #3 in the Cipher Office series, Knitting in the City World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

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Download your copy TODAY or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon US:https://amzn.to/2RnGgqQ

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Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/38oFcda

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2NI0xqc

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2NLdj76

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Excerpt

In my haste to not be late, I barrel right into a woman coming through the front door.

Grabbing her arms to steady her from falling, I apologize profusely. “I’m sorry! I didn’t see you. Are you all right?”

Smiling tightly, the blonde isn’t thrilled a random stranger practically ran her over. But she’s polite anyway. “I’ll be fine.”

“Are you sure? You aren’t hurt?” I don’t think she is, but sometimes I don’t know my own strength.

This time her smile is a little more genuine. “I’m sure. You sure are in a rush.”

Letting go of her arms, I feel like she needs an explanation other than me racing around like an idiot. “I’m the one parent who has a tendency to be late for school pickup. The lady at the front desk gives me a nasty evil glare if she has to call me.”

This woman, whose name I still haven’t bothered to ask, laughs and I’m struck by how cute she is. She’s definitely a few years older than I am, but not by much. There’s nothing about her that necessarily stands out in a crowd, but her smile is genuine. This is a woman who likes to laugh and have fun. I always gravitate toward those people, which gives me a fleeting thought: I should have noticed my ex-wife hardly ever smiled for real.
Laughing was even rarer unless it was at someone else’s expense. Those should have been easy indicators she wasn’t the one for me.

“Parker Elementary?” the blonde asks.

“Yeah.” I give her a quizzical look. “How did you know?”

“Do not mess with Ms. Alexander’s routine. She will cut a bitch.”

My laugh comes easily, and I find myself hoping this woman is a new member. She’s funny. I love it when clients have a sense of humor. Offering her my hand, I introduce myself. “I’m Abel. Trainer here at Weight Expectations and father of Mabel in second grade.”

She places her cold hand in mine. “Elliott. Interviewee for the childcare position and mother of Ainsley, also in second grade.”

“Ah! Well it’s nice to meet you. Fingers crossed I’ll see you here later as a fellow employee. And if not here, at Parker Elementary as a fellow parent. Hopefully not in Ms. Alexander’s line of sight.”

Elliott holds up her gloved hands and crosses her fingers around each other. “Wish me luck. Now run fast.”

About M.E. Carter

My name is M.E. Carter and I have no idea how I ended up writing books. I’m more of a story teller (the more exaggerated the better) and I happen to know people who helped me get those stories on paper. I love reading (read almost 200 books last year), hate working out (but I do it anyway because my trainer makes me), love food (but hate what it does to my butt) and love traveling to non-touristy places most people never see. I live in Houston with my four kids, Mary, Elizabeth, Carter and Bug, who was just a twinkle in my eye when I came up with my pen name. Yeah, I’ll probably have to pay for his therapy someday for being left out.

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Find M.E. Carter online

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2ly7Fu3

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

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2k4SZCf

Instagram: http://bit.ly/2k1O4Sx

Website: https://www.authormecarter.com/

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Books, Kindle Unlimited, New Release, Romance, romcom, series, smartypants romance, Uncategorized

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Welcome back to Weight Expectations, where the unexpected is likely to happen.

Cutie and the Beast, an all-new hilarious romantic standalone from M.E. Carter, is LIVE!

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Living with her mother seemed like a good idea at the time. But Elliott Donovan’s living arrangements are not working for her anymore. Desperate to get back on her financial feet after a divorce and out from under her mother’s thumb, Elliott takes a job in the child care center at Weight Expectations, a local gym.

It has everything she needs – family friendly hours, more pay than she expected, and a super cute trainer who just happens to have part of his house for rent.

Abel DiSoto was living the good life until his wife walked out taking half of the family income with her. The blow to his ego was bad enough, but after a fire at the gym scattered Abel’s clients, and consequently his commissions, he’s stuck figuring out how to make ends meet, too. Renting out the master suite of his house to his new co-worker seems like an easy solution. They’re both mature adults, they both have eight-year-old daughters, and their work schedules coordinate so they can lend each other a helping hand to ease the burden of single parenthood.

The only downside? Living like a blended family when you’re not actually a family can present some challenges.

Welcome back to Weight Expectations, where the unexpected is likely to happen.

‘Cutie and the Beast’ is a full-length contemporary romantic comedy, can be read as a standalone, and is book #3 in the Cipher Office series, Knitting in the City World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

CO03-LIVE copy

Download your copy TODAY!

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2RnGgqQ

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2tt0Az5

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/38oFcda

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2NI0xqc

AppleBooks: https://apple.co/30wb7FP

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Kobo: http://bit.ly/2TInuNN

Google Play: http://bit.ly/378Hmxa

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2NLdj76

Coming to Kindle Unlimited April 20th!

About M.E. Carter

My name is M.E. Carter and I have no idea how I ended up writing books. I’m more of a story teller (the more exaggerated the better) and I happen to know people who helped me get those stories on paper. I love reading (read almost 200 books last year), hate working out (but I do it anyway because my trainer makes me), love food (but hate what it does to my butt) and love traveling to non-touristy places most people never see. I live in Houston with my four kids, Mary, Elizabeth, Carter and Bug, who was just a twinkle in my eye when I came up with my pen name. Yeah, I’ll probably have to pay for his therapy someday for being left out.

17203046_307957012940758_8976649853521907524_n

Find M.E. Carter online

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2ly7Fu3

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

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2k4SZCf

Instagram: http://bit.ly/2k1O4Sx

Website: https://www.authormecarter.com/

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Book Review, Books, New Release, Romance, romantic suspense, series, smartypants romance, Uncategorized

Book Review: Code of Honor, Smartypants Romance Cipher Security book 2, by April White

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5 of 5 suspenseful stars

Since this was a Smartypants romance book, chances were good that I would like it. However, I was happily surprised that I LOVED it! I haven’t read any other books by this author, so I’m definitely looking forward to going back to the first book in the Cipher Security series, Code of Conduct.

I used to read a lot of mysteries and suspense stories: Mary Higgins Clark, Patricia Cornwell, Anna Rivers Siddons, Nevada Barr. Since getting back into romance books, I haven’t read a lot of suspense, but Code of Honor is a nice mixture of the two. Is it a romance book with suspense, or a mystery with a side of romance? Either way, I loved it. It was fast-paced, and interesting, and fun, with a dash of sexy sprinkled here and there. I liked Anna and her relationship with her twin sister, Collette. I loved Darius, and the peek into Iranian culture that his character and his family gives us. I loved that Anna referred to him as a Disney prince throughout the story. It really did paint a lovely picture.

The thing I like best about books from Smartypants Romance is that they often contain characters we love from the Penny Reid Universe, in this case, Cipher’s two big kahunas, Quinn and Dan. April White captures them both perfectly, and as I read Dan’s lines, I could hear them as if they were spoken by Stephen Dexter, who narrated Dan and Kat’s book in the Knitting in the City series, Marriage of Inconvenience. It was a wonderful, unexpected bonus.

When I finished the book, I was all set to give it four stars. Then I read the acknowledgments, which bumped it up to five stars for me, because the mystery in the book was based on REAL LIFE EVENTS. Now I want to read the book all over again, after I’ve read Code of Conduct, of course! Thanks to the author for the opportunity to read and review this book.

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Books, New Release, Romance, series, smartypants romance, Uncategorized

New Release! Code of Honor by April White, Cipher Systems Book 2, a Smartypants Romance book

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Code of Honor, an all-new standalone in the romantic suspense Cipher Security series from April White, is LIVE!

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A painting, a panic room, a thief, and her lover … whose job is to catch her.

There are three things you need to know about Anna.

1) She’s a bounty hunter with adrenaline junkie habits,

2) She’s the “awkward” twin, and

3) She’s a thief – kind of.

Darius designs security systems for Cipher Security, and the strange and remarkable woman he met the night the painting was stolen is as intriguing a mystery as his hunt for the thief is.

But the lady has no filter, and she knows she can’t lie to the man who looks like a Disney Prince and kisses like fairytales are true, so she runs from the one person who may actually see her as the heroine of her own story.

‘Code of Honor’ is a full-length contemporary romantic suspense, can be read as a standalone and is book #2 in the Cipher Security series, Knitting in the City World, Penny Reid Book Universe.

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Download your copy TODAY!

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2Fn0o6Y

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2QYOC8j

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About April White

April White has been a film producer, private investigator, bouncer, teacher and screenwriter. She has climbed in the Himalayas, survived a shipwreck, and lived on a gold mine in the Yukon. She and her husband share their home in Southern California with two extraordinary boys and a lifetime collection of books.

Her first novel, Marking Time is the 2016 winner of the Library Journal Indie E-Book Award for YA Literature, and all five books in the Immortal Descendants series are on the Amazon Top 100 lists in Time Travel Romance and Historical Fantasy.

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Find April White online

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2lyxY3g

Twitter: http://bit.ly/2ly75wn

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Website: https://aprilwhitebooks.com/

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Author spotlight, Books, Romance

Spotlight Author of the Month: Penny Reid

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You know the old saying “Don’t judge a book by its cover”? The first time I read a book by Penny Reid, I did exactly that. I’d gotten the first book in her Winston Brothers series, entitled Truth or Beard, for free through a newsletter, and I did what I normally do once I download a free book: forget all about it. Then one day, I was scrolling through the books on my kindle and my gaze fell upon this awesome cover. While I know we’re told not to judge a book by one, with a cover image like that, I figured it had to be good. It was, after all, different from what my daughters call my “shirtless man books.” I was hooked from the start, partly because the book opens with a Lord of the Rings quote, but mostly because of the history the two main characters, Jessica James and Duane Winston, share. (I love it when characters have a complicated backstory!) I finished this book in three days.

Most of the time, a series has three siblings, and each gets their own book. Duane Winston has five brothers (in no particular order, his twin Beau, Billy, Jethro, Cletus, & Roscoe) and one sister, Ashley.  To date, the Winston Brothers series has five books, with more to come. Duane’s sister Ashley’s story is part of another series, called Knitting in the City.  Lucky for you, Ashley’s book is FREE for a limited time (link below). Penny Reid is also the author of the Hypothesis series, the Rugby series (with L. H. Cosway) and the upcoming Dad Bod series.

I have read every one of the Knitting in the City books, and also own most of them on audiobook. (Side note: Joy Nash, who does a lot of the narrating in both of these series, is AMAZING. I am VERY picky about my female narrators, because I don’t like the way the majority of them do the male’s voices.) I have read all of the Winston Brothers books so far, except the most recent, Dr. Strange Beard, which I am saving for my beach vacation next week!

Penny Reid is known for “smart romances.” You’ll read about bitcoins, the Nigerian oil crisis, RICO charges, Artificial Intelligence, and the NSA. She is hysterically funny, and her books make me FEEL ALL THE FEELINGS! I remember when I was reading Dating-ish, book #6 in KitC, and something happens to Marie, the main character. Penny’s incredible writing made me feel as if it had happened to ME. I honestly had to put the book down and walk away for a couple of days, because I was so profoundly affected by it. That’s the sign of an excellent and well-written book, right there!

If you’d like to find out more about Penny Reid, you can check out her website http://pennyreid.ninja/ and sign up for her newsletter. You can find her on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. Even better, you can start reading one of her books for FREE right now! After you’ve fallen in love with her writing, be sure to join like-minded readers in her Facebook group, called Sharks of Awesome!

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