Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Scoring off the Ice by Stacey Lynn Blog Tour


Sometimes scoring off the ice leads to the greatest rewards.

I’ve had only one goal in life since I first strapped on a pair of skates—make America’s pro hockey league.

I left Denmark. I made it to the top. Now, I’m determined to be the best. No distractions. I eat, sleep, and breathe hockey.

Until my birthday when my teammates convince me to live a little.
But living a little takes on a whole new meaning when less than a year later I’m confronted with a crying baby on my doorstep, drooling on a note that declares he’s mine.

Suddenly, I'm a single dad in way over my head.
There is no playbook for situations like this.

Luckily, I have Paisley.
My gorgeous neighbor, my long-time crush, and now—my savior.
She’s there any time I need her.
Helping. Guiding. Gazing at me with those green eyes that make me feel capable of this after all.

With her at my side, I’m quickly learning there’s more to life than winning a hockey game.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50282095-scoring-off-the-ice


Book 2
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo




“Who are you?” I don’t like calling her the woman. I’ve wondered her name for months since she started appearing in that doorway so close to mine.

She turns to me and in her arms is the baby. She’s holding a bottle and the baby is drinking. Quiet little sounds come from it and she grins down at the baby in her arms before tilting her head at me.

“What?”

“You. What is your name?”

“Paisley. Are you Mikah?”

She must want money if she knows my name. Perhaps she’s a fan. A puck bunny—that’s what my teammates call the girls who follow players and only want one thing from them.

“How did you know?” I wish she wasn’t so pretty. Sometimes it hurts to talk when all I want to do is look at her.

She points to an envelope on the table. The note.

“It’s on the outside. I didn’t know if it was your name or the baby’s, so I took a guess. Are you... are you okay?”

“A stranger shows up at my door with a baby in her arms, saying it’s mine. How okay am I supposed to be?” I wander to the table while I ask.

I’m surprised by her gentle laugh.

“I suppose this isn’t your typical Friday night.”

She is funny. If I didn’t think I might throw up, I might laugh. No. This is not my typical Friday night. Mine are for resting. Not life-changing drama.

I say nothing and grab the envelope. I stare at it for a moment. Perhaps if I do not open it, I can pretend this didn’t happen. My fingers shake as I tear it open.

The envelope is larger than normal and thick and I’m careful as I pull out several folded papers.

The top one is the most important though as I instantly see my name, written in scrolling black ink.


MIKAH,

His name is Angelo.





Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Ruthie☆☆☆☆
This is the second book in the series, and whilst there are clearly team dynamics which mean that reading them in order is advisable but is not essential. I love hockey romances, and this one is a good mix of hockey camaraderie and romance, but there isn't a lot of on ice time. In fact, Paisley is completely ignorant of the sport (all sport really), which is both cute and funny.

Paisley is living in her absent uncle's lovely apartment whilst she completes her master’s studies. One evening she hears a baby crying outside her door and goes to investigate...

Mikah is a very young, talented Danish hockey player who had (his first ever) one weekend of passion just under a year ago, but he never expects to find his neighbour holding a screaming baby at his door. He is 23, single, and his life has been all about ice hockey since he was five.

Baby Angelo gives the two of them a chance to get to know each other better, as Mikah's baby knowledge is seriously lacking and Paisley is more than happy to help. The road is not entirely smooth but makes for a great story. I enjoyed the team times, when there are some intriguing signposts of potential future storylines, as well as showing that the Ice Kings is made up of a generally great group of guys. This support is vital as things get rough, but also gives us some fun insight into the level of innocent that Mikah was just a year ago!

Very sweet, fun romance to add to the series. I look forward to the next installment.




Stacey Lynn likes her coffee with a dash of sugar, her heroes with a side of bossy, and her wine a deep shade of red.

The author of over thirty romance novels, many of which have been best-selling titles on Amazon, AppleBooks, and Barnes & Noble, she loves being able to turn her vivid imagination into a career that brings entertainment and joy to her readers. Focused on sports romance and emotional, small-town romance, she also loves stretching herself in different genres.

Born in Texas and raised in the Midwest, she now makes her home in North Carolina and loves all things Southern. Together with her ultimate tall, dark, and handsome hero, she has four children. Her life is a chaotic mess that fights with her Type-A, list-making, neurotically organized preferences and she wouldn’t have it any other way.


Connect with Stacey

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Scoring off the Ice (Ice Kings #2) by Stacey Lynn to read and review for this tour.

Southern Storms by Brittainy C. Cherry Blog Tour


All I wanted to do was run away, I never expected to crash into his arms...

After leaving the city life behind to escape my loveless marriage, I moved to small town Havenbarrow for a fresh start.

What I didn’t expect was to find myself drawn to the town’s black sheep.

They called him troubled. Cold. A man with a dark past.

What everyone seemed to miss about Jax was the splashes of light in his eyes. The random acts of kindness he performed when no one was watching. The way he made me smile and laugh.

Jax helped unpack the baggage I’d been carrying around with me. He was patient with my pain and gentle with my scars. He was the stillness during my hurricane.

Yet when both of our pasts came back to haunt our present days, we realized quickly that sometimes love stories didn’t end the way we’d hoped.

Sometimes you were left with only the damage from the storm.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50333111-southern-storms


Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
~  Also Available with KindleUnlimited  ~




Kennedy

Joy Jones was quite the character to take in. That morning, when the sun came up, she walked outside to her front porch and sat down in her rocking chair with a smile on her face and a large cup of coffee. A few of my nosy visitors told me that it was a daily routine for her.

Her silver-dripped hair was tossed up in a messy bun being held together with two knitting needles, and her thick-framed, vibrant-orange glasses sat on top of her head. She wore a vibrant bow in her hair that matched her dress for the day, and she always greeted everyone who passed by her house, even when they didn’t speak back to her. Everyone in town called her Crazy Joy, even though she was the kindest person. Her only odd quirk was that she never left her property.

I wondered how she managed, though. I wondered how she kept living without stepping foot outside of her home. It seemed she hadn’t any children and she didn’t have a caregiver who came to aid her, from what I could tell.

Later that morning, my questions were answered as a blue pick-up truck pulled in front of the house. Needless to say, my jaw dropped to the ground when I saw Mr. Personality step out of the vehicle. He walked his way straight toward Joy’s front porch with his arms filled with grocery bags.

He proceeded to greet Joy. She stood from the rocking chair as he set the bags down on the porch. Then, he hugged her.

He hugged her!

I wouldn’t have thought someone as grumpy as Mr. Personality had the ability to hug someone. The two of them walked inside to put the groceries away, leaving me completely baffled and unable to return to my scheduled reading. It took a lot to break me away from a book. And by ‘a lot,’ I meant a lot. My house could’ve been on fire, aliens could’ve beamed me up, and I would’ve still been trying to get in that one last page. When my own love story was broken, I turned to story books to heal the cracks of my broken heartbeats. When my world fell apart, the story books still believed in happily ever afters. Those books saved me on the days I felt my soul falling victim to the hardest of storms.

Yet, Mr. Personality pulled me away from the words against the page. He made me curious about him walking into Joy’s house. Watching him chat away with her had my mind racing. A few minutes later, when the two of them walked back outside with two glasses in their hands—one with wine, the other with some dark liquor—whiskey, I assumed—I couldn’t stop myself from glancing over to them. Joy kept talking, and Mr. Personality kept responding. Even though I couldn’t hear what they were saying, Joy looked beyond smitten with whatever was being said her way, which forced my own heart to skip a few beats.

Well, I’ll be damned.

The town’s asshole made me swoon.




Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Mary☆☆☆☆☆
I have found another favorite book from author Brittainy C. Cherry. Jax and Kennedy are two broken souls that found each other as kids and somehow made their way back to each other as adults. And it is what each needed to heal the other's heart.

This story is filled with pain and heartache that will make you cry, but you wouldn't expect anything else from this author. You will also find yourself laughing too. This story has all the feels to make you want to read it over and over again.

So, if you haven't read a Brittainy C. Cherry story before or if you love her stories as much as I do, then you will love this one. Just have a tissue or a box handy because you will need them and enjoy it.



Author Brittainy C. Cherry is an Amazon #1 bestselling author.

She has been in love with words since the day she took her first breath. She graduated from Carroll University with a bachelor’s degree in Theatre Arts and a minor in Creative Writing.

Her novels have been published in 18+ countries around the world. Brittainy lives in Brookfield, Wisconsin with her fur babies.


Connect with Brittainy

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Blog  ~  Goodreads
Brittainy's Golden Girls (And Boys) Facebook Group


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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Southern Storms (Compass #1) by Brittainy C. Cherry to read and review for this tour. Mary received her copy via the author’s ARC team.

Jace by Sasha Summers Blog Tour


Music is all he has... but is it enough to heal them both?

Jace Black went from an oilfield roughneck to an overnight singing sensation. Now he's working on a duet with country music legend Krystal King, and he's determined to earn his way to the top. But the more time he spends with Krystal, the more he finds himself falling for her—and he's beginning to be more interested in her than he is in making a name for himself.

Krystal King grew up on stage and in the spotlight. No matter how golden her life appears, her past left deep wounds. But Jace Black makes her wish things were different. To do that, she'd have to risk letting him in... And that might be too big a risk for her battered heart to take.

Let the music carry you away in this brand-new series featuring the King family and their country music dynasty.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50628052-jace


Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo




“How’d you get here?” she asked, a smile on her face.

“My sister. She entered me in that reality show and everything changed.” He shook his head. “All this”— he pointed around the studio—“is still a shock to my system. Your dad in there. Your sister. Being opposite you. Singing with you?” His voice deepened. “I am in my head a little.”

Her expression shifted, from curious to… concerned. “I’m guessing there’s a reason you’re working so hard?” She cleared her throat. “Wife? Kids?”

“No.” Not anymore. Thinking about what he’d lost still tore him up inside. Talking about it here, now? No way. “Little sister. A lot of medical bills to pay off.” He didn’t elaborate. “She’s a freshman in college now.” He ran his fingers through his hair. “She’s a kid. A good kid. Deserves having her chance.”

“What about you?” she asked. “Ever stop to think this is your chance?”

This was definitely his chance. But he’d been putting Heather first for so long, putting her first now just made sense. “A chance I can’t afford to screw up,” he agreed.

She grinned. “Jace Michael Black. My daddy thinks you can sing. And if my daddy thinks you can sing, you can’t be all that bad.”

He laughed. Was it wrong that hearing her say his name felt good? And her grin. Damn but she was a pretty thing. Even without all the makeup and fancy clothes she’d been wearing the other night. If anything, he preferred her like this—young, natural, casual. And then he realized, she was relaxed, all the defensive tension and anger gone. She loved this, loved music. They had that in common.

“What’s your sister’s name?”

“Heather,” he said.

“She’s named Heather and you get stuck with Jace?” She shook her head.

“Still not over the name yet?” he asked, his gaze falling to her long neck.

“Told you, I’m not sure what I think yet,” she said.

“I’m fine. I mean, I’m ready now.” He rolled his head. He could do this.

“You sure?” she asked, picking up her headphones. “We could go once, no music. If you want?”

He shook his head and put on his headphones.

Krystal gave the sound booth the thumbs-up and a slight hum flooded his ears. The yearning strains of the guitar flipped a switch inside. The melody was sweeter than he’d expected. And when the lead-in notes rolled over him, he closed his eyes and sang, “I remember you, standing in the sun, smiling at me, and suddenly the world caught fire. Blinding, beautiful fire.”

The music kept going, but Krystal was silent.

He opened his eyes to find her staring at him, her lips parted and her eyes wide. He’d screwed up? His gaze bounced from the pages to Krystal. She just kept right on staring. Shit. What had he done? He glanced at her, skimmed the lyrics, then turned to the sound booth. “Aw, was my timing off?” As far as he could tell, he’d been spot on.

Hank King chuckled. “No. You were great. You just blew her socks off, son.” He was still chuckling. “How about we start again? Will that work for you, Krystal?”

Jace looked at Krystal then, really looked at her. There weren’t many musicians he admired like Krystal. She was the real deal, what singers and songwriters should strive to be. And he’d impressed her. He’d impressed her? “Did I?” he asked, disbelieving. “Knock your socks off?”

She shook her head but didn’t say a word.

“I did.” He sat a little straighter, more than a little pleased.

“Don’t let it go to your head,” Krystal teased. “Besides, I’m not wearing socks.” She smiled at him. “You keep singing like that and you’re going to do just fine.” She blew out her breath. “Okay. Let’s do this.”

One minute, he was feeling pretty damn proud of himself. The next, he was drowning in the heat of those green, green eyes.

“Let’s go,” Hank said.

He slid his earphones back on, the swell of the music flooding his ears. She liked what she heard. And this time, he didn’t close his eyes. He watched her. “I remem¬ber you, standing in the sun, smiling at me, and suddenly my world caught fire. Blinding, beautiful fire.”

She blinked, green eyes flashing before she closed her eyes to sing, “I remember you, taking my hand, holding me close, and suddenly my world caught fire. Blinding, beautiful fire.” Her voice—damn, her voice. It reached inside and grabbed hold of him.

“You were everything. My breath, my home, my night, my day. Didn’t care what people said. Didn’t need a thing but you,” he paused a beat. “Till the flames inside burned too hot, and you tried to run from the heat.”

“You were everything. My hope, my fear, my night, my day. Didn’t know my heart was gone. Didn’t know you took it all.” The words gutted him. “And your words, your lies, your promises were the sweetest pain of all.”

The chorus was together. Her gaze met his then, locked together as the words hung in the air between them. “Love isn’t love when the flames burn it down. There’s no hiding or forgiveness from the damage that it’s done. When the smoke clears away, you’ll still find me search¬ing here. Searching for the ashes of my heart.”

He was lost in her green-eyed gaze by the time they’d finished the second verse. And the chorus, together… Singing with her was more than he could ever have anticipated.

Her lyrics were powerful and real. He knew what it was to love someone and suffer betrayal. The anger and pain took some of the joy out of life. If he thought about Nikki and Ben too long, the pain made it hard to breathe. How many times had he replayed that night, over and over, wishing he could go back and change it?

***
Excerpted from Jace by Sasha Summers. © 2020 by Sasha Summers. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.




Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Ruthie☆☆☆☆
This is the first in a new series, and by the time we get to the end, there is even a possible extra book being hinted at – which can only be good news. I enjoy rock band/musicians touring and all the crazy that goes along with this, so I was delighted to get to review this book. It was, in fact, even richer than I had expected and took some novel directions which set up future books very cleverly. All the world building was done with subtlety and style – and wow, I would love to go and give CiCi King a piece of my mind!

Krystal, Emma, and Travis King, a successful country band led by their father, the even more famous Hank King, are interesting in themselves. With issues within the family coming out throughout the book, Jace, the new to the industry reality show winner, is thrown in at the deep end. He does brilliantly I think, often keeping his temper when riled, and consistently being supportive to Krystal, even when he doesn't know the whole story. He is almost too good to be true, but as we learn about his past, and how swift his rise to fame has been, it is heartening to believe such people exist.

I thought the level of intrigue was well done. Both Krystal and Jace have suffered in the past; although very different issues, they have both been hurt by those who they should have been able to trust. Krystal's story is very troubling, and it fits in well with the demands that are justifiably being made in real life in the #MeToo movement. It was sad to think how true the story could have been.

I am very curious to see what happens next! Great start to a new series, thank you, Sasha Summers.



Sasha Summers’s passions are storytelling, romance, and travel. A bestselling and award-winning author of more than 20 romance novels and novellas, Sasha continues to fall in love with each hero she writes. She lives with her family in the suburbs of the Texas Hill country near San Antonio.

Connect with Sasha

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Jace (Kings of Country #1) by Sasha Summers to read and review for this tour.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Ashes by Aleatha Romig Release Blitz


“From what I’ve tasted of desire, I hold with those who favor fire...” ~ Robert Frost

Patrick has awakened a fire I forgot existed.

Will this renewed desire warm my soul or consume my world?

Is it too late?

Will the life we yearn to have survive the ashes?

From New York Times bestselling author Aleatha Romig comes a brand-new dark romance, Ashes, set in the same dangerous world as Sparrow Webs. You do not need to read the Web of Sin or Tangled Web trilogy to get caught up in this new and intriguing saga, Web of Desire.

Ashes is book three of the Web of Desire trilogy that began in Spark and continued in Flame.

Have you been Aleatha’d?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50260649-ashes


Book 3
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo





Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Avid Reader☆☆☆☆☆
M/F Romance
Triggers: Click HERE to see Avid Reader’s review on Goodreads for trigger warnings.

You have to read the previous books in this series, otherwise, the story won't make sense.

This is a fantastic conclusion to this series. Questions will be answered, lives will change, and you get to see a side of Patrick that's sweet and gentle.

Madeline is just trying to get on with her newfound life. She has found Patrick again and has their daughter, Ruby, too. Madeline knows that while her past haunts her, she'll never really be free.

Patrick and Madeline will have to fight for all they want. They were ripped apart, found their way back to each other, and now face a lot of people who want to keep them from knowing the truth.

Deception, revenge, love, and hate all wrapped up in this conclusion. It was amazing and will leave you breathless. It's a must read!


Mary☆☆☆☆☆
This is the end of the Web of Desire trilogy and it will pull all the emotions from you while reading it.

Maddie is with Marion and has learned something that will change her life for the better if Sparrow believes it. Patrick only has one thing on his mind and that is to get Maddie to his apartment where she will be safe and with their daughter. With both Maddie and Ruby safe, the Sparrow men can do their thing and keep everyone safe and the lockdown on the Sparrow tower will be lifted.

Secrets will be learned about Marion Elliot and the troubles the Bratva are dealing with. As Maddie remembers things about her time at the beginning of her captivity, Patrick only wants to exact revenge on those that hurt her.

Will Maddie be able to tell Patrick all that she endured? Can Patrick still want her after he learns what she went through? Will Sparrow send her away after they rescue her from Marion? Will there be a future for Patrick and Maddie?

The ending in this story was perfect and was the only way for it to end. Maddie, Patrick, and Ruby are the perfect families and when you add the rest of the Sparrow family members, it only gets better. This story had me laughing and crying but in the end, the tears were happy tears.

If you haven't read anything from Aleatha Romig yet, you need to. Just pick one and enjoy it! Have you been Aleatha’d?


Shelby☆☆☆☆☆
Ashes is the final book in the Web of Desire trilogy, and THIS is how you conclude an awesome series!

I promise I won't spoil this book or this series, but will say the suspense kept me on edge. If you haven't read all the books in this world, I highly suggest starting now.

Having said that, all of the Web of Desire is fire... every single book. The characters, Patrick and Maddie, have an intense, burning chemistry which was felt from page one. The connection is undeniable, but the circumstances are interesting (if not dark and depressing).

If you couldn't tell, I loved this book. Thankfully, questions are answered, and all the secrets finally come to light. As with all of Aleatha Romig's books, you know you are getting a story full of layers. Some are positive, many are negative, but the ends always justify the means. Some of these secrets are quite dark in nature and may disturb you. I promise it's worth it though!

I love all the characters, but especially Patrick and Ruby, and I loved that we got to revisit with older favorites. I will patiently be waiting for Reid and Lorna's story.


Also Available in the Web of Desire Trilogy

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

For reviews & more info, check out our stop on the Spark Release Blitz.


Book 2
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

For reviews & more info, check out our stop on the Flame Release Blitz.




Aleatha Romig is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author who lives in Indiana, USA. She grew up in Mishawaka, graduated from Indiana University, and is currently living south of Indianapolis. Aleatha has raised three children with her high school sweetheart and husband of over thirty years. Before she became a full-time author, she worked days as a dental hygienist and spent her nights writing. Now, when she's not imagining mind-blowing twists and turns, she likes to spend her time a with her family and friends. Her other pastimes include reading and creating heroes/anti-heroes who haunt your dreams and bring your imagination to life!

Aleatha released her first novel, Consequences, in August of 2011. Consequences became a bestselling series with five novels and two companions released from 2011 through 2015. The compelling and epic story of Anthony and Claire Rawlings has graced more than half a million e-readers. Aleatha released the first of her series Tales from the Dark Side, Insidious, in the fall of 2014. These standalone thrillers continue Aleatha's twisted style with an increase in heat.

In the fall of 2015, Aleatha moved head first into the world of dark romance with the release of Betrayal, the first of her five novel Infidelity series that has taken the reading world by storm. She also began her traditional publishing career with Thomas and Mercer. Her books Into the Light and Away from the Dark were published through this mystery/thriller publisher in 2016.

In the spring of 2017, Aleatha released her first stand-alone, fun, and sexy romantic comedy with Plus One, followed by the sweet stand-alone, One Night.

Aleatha is a "Published Author's Network" member of the Romance Writers of America and PEN America.  She is represented by Kevan Lyon of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.

Connect with Aleatha

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Blog  ~  Goodreads




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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Ashes (Web of Desire #3) by Aleatha Romig to read and review for this tour. Mary received her review copy via the author’s ARC group.

Friday, April 3, 2020

A Bad Day for Sunshine by Darynda Jones


New York Times bestselling author Darynda Jones is back with the first novel in the brand-new snarky, sassy, wickedly fun Sunshine Vicram series—A Bad Day for Sunshine!

Sheriff Sunshine Vicram finds her cup o’ joe more than half full when the small village of Del Sol, New Mexico, becomes the center of national attention for a kidnapper on the loose.


Del Sol, New Mexico is known for three things: its fry-an-egg-on-the-cement summers, strong cups of coffee—and, now, a nationwide manhunt? Del Sol native Sunshine Vicram has returned to town as the elected sheriff—thanks to her adorably meddlesome parents who nominated her—and she expects her biggest crime wave to involve an elderly flasher named Doug. But a teenage girl is missing, a kidnapper is on the loose, and all of this is reminding Sunshine why she left Del Sol in the first place. Add to that the trouble at her daughter’s new school, plus and a kidnapped prized rooster named Puff Daddy, and, well, the forecast looks anything but sunny.

But even clouds have their silver linings. This one's got Levi, Sunshine's sexy, almost-old-flame, and a fiery-hot US Marshal. With temperatures rising everywhere she turns, Del Sol's normally cool-minded sheriff is finding herself knee-deep in drama and danger. Can Sunshine face the call of duty—and find the kidnapper who's terrorizing her beloved hometown—without falling head over high heels in love... or worse?

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/46034960-a-bad-day-for-sunshine


Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo



Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Sarah☆☆☆☆☆
This is an absolutely brilliant start to a new series from Darynda Jones. Sunshine Vicram is a fabulous new leading lady and this eccentric small town crime thriller had me alternately terrified and laughing out loud.

Sunny is a badass crime fighter with a quick wit and a sharp sense of humour, but she also has a complicated past and more than one dark secret she’d rather keep hidden. Unfortunately, between the resentful mayor, her own meddling mother, and a daughter who has inherited Sunny’s enthusiasm for an investigation, there isn’t much room for secrets in Del Sol. I really love the mix of outrageous situations, gentle family drama, and a complicated blend of current and historic crime.

One thing I loved about the Charley Davidson books was Jones’ ability to write a good bad boy. Now, Levi might be completely human, but he is a delicious mix of danger with an attitude and possibly a touch of conscience. The story isn’t a traditional romance but the chemistry and banter between Sunny and Levi definitely makes for good reading.

While part of the investigation is tied up in this first book, the story actually leaves readers with more questions than answers. I loved this first book and I already can’t wait for the next one. I think I’m going to love this series.


Veronica☆☆☆☆☆
A Bad Day for Sunshine is the first book in a new series and the first book I've read by this author. Sunshine Vicram returns with her teenage daughter, Auri, to the small town she grew up in to take up the position of sheriff.

There is a lot going on this in this town, some of it funny, some of it serious. A new friend of Auri's goes missing, presumed kidnapped. An escaped prisoner is believed to be somewhere in town, there are cursed muffins, neighbours fighting over a rooster, and the list goes on. But the biggest mystery relates to Sunshine's abduction when she was 17, which resulted in her pregnancy and how Levi, the guy she has been crazy in love with for years, is connected.

The story is told from the point of view of both Sunshine and Auri. I loved the way this was done. There were times when there were parallels between what mother and daughter were going through. Sunshine and Auri totally rock. They are smart, sassy, brave, and they are my new book heroes. Sunshine and Levi's interactions were sublime. It is clear that things between them are going to develop over this series and I really can't wait to see it. Auri is also experiencing young love and Cruz, the object of her affections, is the kind of guy every young girl would want.

I loved everything about this story. The mysteries, the crazy characters, the complicated relationships, the romance. It all worked perfectly together. I hope the wait for the next book in the series is not too far away because I'm dying to find out what happens next.


Ruthie☆☆☆☆☆
5 stars of absolute fabulousness – would award many more if I could!

There is only one thing wrong with this book... it ended 🙁. I could have just read and read and read – and have little doubt that once the series is complete, I will take great pleasure in doing exactly that! I adored the Charley Davidson series, so didn't even read the blurb before knowing I would love it too. It is completely different, but the same brilliant style of writing of somehow including us in the story, and the wonderful mix of fanciful and all too real. I both laughed and shed tears. I had to stop and shut off my Kindle for a second or two more than once, as I just knew what came next wasn't going to be good. Add in Levi... and well, what else does a reader need?

Sunshine and her daughter Auri (Aurora) are undoubtedly the stars of the book – and even though we see them as being close from the very beginning, when Auri admits to something deep between them, do expect to need plenty of tissues. I love that both of them have really important and meaningful relationships with a wide variety of people. And do expect to meet lots of them and get to understand how this is a book which may centre on Sunshine, but is much broader in its plots than just her.

I realise that I am possibly not doing a great job of describing this book, but to be fair, it is just one of those books which is full of so much goodness, that is difficult to know where to start and how to avoid giving something away. It is undoubtedly a mystery story, indeed multiple mysteries assail us. It is a story of second chances, as Sunshine has returned to live in her childhood town – elected unwittingly as the new sheriff – although she has been back for holidays, and Auri has spent summers there with her grandparents and making friends. Sunshine is now going to be able to work with her long-time best friend, Quincy, and has to keep seeing her biggest crush, Levi, and time hasn't changed that. I love that thread running through the story, although it has some dark undertones.

There are undercurrents of mafia, of a group of women who direct the town, of a muffin baker who foresees trouble, of a whacky, but wealthy book club, an escapologist rooster, school politics, and even legal moonshine gin!

I am so looking forward to the next book in the series being available, as I have the biggest book hangover... As you may have guessed from my somewhat disjointed review, my recommendation is READ, READ, READ!


Shelby☆☆☆☆
I loved the Charley Davidson series, I honestly loved it. I had doubts about A Bad Day for Sunshine. I should never have doubted Darynda Jones and will not make that mistake again! I assumed Sunshine Vicram would be a carbon copy of Charley, how wrong I was. They have similarities in that they are both strong women who feel deeply, but never give up even when the world is against them, but that's about it.

Sunshine Vicram finds herself in a peculiar position as the elected sheriff of a town she doesn't reside in. Yes, it's her hometown but she left many years ago. She joins her best friend on the police force in Del Sol, NM and it's definitely NOT a quiet, peaceful town. Crazy, quirky, eccentric? YES, but also endearing.

While the town is a little hectic in and of itself, there is a lot going on for poor Sunshine to solve. Meaning there were no slow moments in the read. I never wanted to put this down. I needed to figure out each and every moment but especially the Levi dynamic. Levi, Sunshine's high school crush, is the epitome of alpha male. He's strong, he's capable, and he's mouth-watering attractive.

I loved the mystery, I seriously love Levi, and I am all about Sunshine's brand of sass. Add to that her daughter the super sleuth, Auri, and this never boring town of Del Sol, and I am ready to roll with this series to the end. I will mention that while the mystery is solved, I ended this book with more questions (and these ones NEED answers, like yesterday) than I started with or even developed throughout!

Overall, this was a strong four-star read and I am excited to see what's next.



New York Times and USA Today bestselling author DARYNDA JONES won a Golden Heart and a RITA for her manuscript First Grave on the Right. A born storyteller, she grew up spinning tales of dashing damsels and heroes in distress for any unfortunate soul who happened by, annoying man and beast alike. Darynda lives in the Land of Enchantment, also known as New Mexico, with her husband and two beautiful sons, the Mighty, Mighty Jones Boys.

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http://www.stmartins.com/


Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of A Bad Day for Sunshine (Sunshine Vicram #1) by Darynda Jones to read and review.

Bears Behaving Badly by MaryJanice Davidson Blog Tour


These social worker bear shifters give the term “mama bear” a whole new meaning! Bestselling author MaryJanice Davidson is back with this brand-new paranormal romance series featuring a foster care system for at-risk shifter babies and teens.

Werebear shifter Annette Garsea is a caseworker for the Interspecies Placement Agency. When a selectively mute and freakishly strong teen werewolf is put in her custody, Annette has to uncover the young girl’s secrets if she’s to have any hopes of helping her. And not even the growling of a scruffy private investigator can distract her from her mission...

Bear shifter David Auberon appreciates Annette’s work with at-risk teen shifters, but he’s not sure if her latest charge is so much a vulnerable teen as a predator who should be locked up. All that changes when he, Annette, and her motley band of juveniles find themselves dodging multiple murder attempts and uncovering a trafficking cartel that doesn’t just threaten the kids, but risks discovery of the shifters by the wider world of homo sapiens.

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Book 1
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While David tore the intruders to pieces, Annette jacked shells into her .12 gauge. Twenty-inch barrel, six-round mag, and a place to attach a bayonet, not that she’d ever felt the urge.

She eschewed buckshot; slugs had the advantage of range, greater accuracy, would shred their target at 1,800 feet per second, and could knock a full-grown werewolf off all four paws. Slugs would also, to use the technical term, incapacitate like a bastard.

Annette stepped out of the room, socked the gun to her shoulder, fired at the (sixty pounds, six-inch bite-wound radius, four feet at the shoulder, sees the gun but tries for my carotid anyway because he is a clear IDIOT) werewolf, and moved slightly to her left as the werewolf’s momentum carried him another eighteen inches while the slug rearranged his coronary arteries.

To her left came a choked snarl that was chopped short. David had pulverized the werewolf’s vocal cords as he went in for the final strike. While she’d run for the gun case, he had killed the other one before he’d gotten a dozen feet from the car, now parked haphazardly at the far end of the yard.

“Oh, hell,” she said, popping the safety and inhaling. Blood, cordite, fear, blood, triumph, scones. “We live to bite another day, hurrah for us, but we’ve killed all our leads.”

Welp, as Mama Mac would say, better them than us. Then she’d bake a Bundt cake. I would love a Bundt cake.

“Pat!” she called. “Sound off!”

“I’m good, we’re all good back here!”

“You okay, Annette?” David asked hoarsely. “You hurt?”

She turned to see David, all six-foot-plus of him, bloodied head to heels. He wiped his face with the back of a bloody hand, which was an exercise in futility. His dark hair was sticking up like he’d used gore for mousse, and he was all powerful arms and broad chest and long, blood-spattered muscles and, um, long… long…

Feet.

Do not gape at the man like a slack-jawed yokel, you slack-jawed yokel! Shifter nudity taboos were, by necessity, far more relaxed than anything in the Stable world. But it still wasn’t polite to stare, no matter how fine the Shifter in question was. Quite the opposite; it could be construed as a challenge.

“I’m all right. Are you?” She stepped closer, and there was no way, no way to stop herself from reaching out. “Well, hell. At least one of them got his teeth into you.”

“Worth it.” Now he stepped closer. Don’t read into it. Maybe he’s worried you can’t hear him from two feet away. He’s so considerate! “Are you sure you’re okay?”

She looked down at her sweater. “None of this is my blood, David.”

“That shouldn’t be as hot as it is,” he said, and cupped the nape of her neck and kissed her. Neither the time nor place, her inner Girl Scout primly pointed out, but damn, the man had a nice mouth. Mmmmm… Skittles…

Just as suddenly, he drew back, leaving her gasping. “Sorry.”

“That bad?”

He shook his head. “Christ, no. But I should’ve asked.”

“Is that an apology?”

“No.”

“Well then. This serves you right.” And she kissed him back. She was pressed up against him, more blood smearing on her sweater, and he was right—it shouldn’t be so exciting. But it was. It didn’t matter that she’d never shifted. Some urges were difficult to deny. For example, the urge to slide her hands down from the small of his back to the springy muscles of his ass, because for some reason men often had the most wonderful asses and David was walking around with a top-notch booty. It wasn’t fair.

She broke the kiss. “Dammit.”

“Yeah, our timing sucks. And I’m glad you’re okay, and you were right to go for the shotgun, but…” He trailed off, then added shyly, “I was kinda hoping to get a look at your beast.”

“Next time.” She took advantage of their proximity to take a closer look at his wound, while resisting the urge to stretch up and taste the spot behind his ear. “Not deep, at least. But you’ve definitely got more holes in you than you did this morning.”

“I’m fast, not infallible.”

“Noted.” Fast was an understatement. It hadn’t been two minutes since they’d gotten out of the car. “Let’s go check on the—”

“Okay, okay! I get it. Caro, you were supposed to drag me clear of the fight. Well, fight’s over, so it’s okay for me to leave the room, so you can just… dammit!”

Annette turned in time to see Pat limping into the kitchen while Caro, in wolf-form, gently clamped her teeth around his calf to hinder his momentum.

“Annette, will you tell her to step off, for the love of all that’s annoying?”

She went to one knee and stretched out a hand to Caro’s wolf, a beast the color of midnight with eyes like hurricane lamps. Such unusual coloring for a gray wolf Shifter. “Thank you so much. You did exactly right. You can let him fend for himself now.”

Caro dropped the bite and made a noise that sounded suspiciously like Hmph!

“Pat, are you okay?” She went to her roommate and started feeling him for injuries. “Does this hurt? Does this? How many of me can you see? Does… ow!

“I’ll slap your hand again if you keep that up. You know I’m hyperticklish. Why is there blood on your face? Were you so hungry you just started biting them as a biped? Because yuck and I’ll have to get to work on an intervention.”

“It’s just back spatter from the shotgun,” she soothed.

“On your face? In the shape of fingers? Like someone grabbed your face? With their fingers? And snogged you silly?”

“Don’t say ‘snogged’ like you’re British, and can we please realign our priorities?”

“You want to talk priorities? Bad enough I’m ruining my favorite apron to shield the eyes of the tender minors in our care—”

“Pat,” she said, exasperated, “literally no one cares about your dick.”

“My Instagram begs to differ.”

***
Excerpted from Bears Behaving Badly by MaryJanice Davidson. © 2020 by MaryJanice Davidson. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.




Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Erica☆☆☆
3.5 Stars

Spoiler-Free Review.

Bears Behaving Badly is the first installment in the BeWere My Heart series. It's been well over a decade since I read a MaryJanice Davidson novel, and I was beyond curious to see if her writing style was as I remembered it. Thankfully, it most certainly was. As you can see by the 3.5 star rating, it wasn't so much that Davidson changed – I have as a reader.

Bears Behaving Badly is a solid paranormal romance with a thread of suspense.

As a social worker for at-risk children, Annette Garsea basically oversees a foster care situation for shifter children. A mute child in her custody leads to multiple attempted murder plots, where the investigation draws toward David Auberon, a bear shifter investigator.

What I enjoy most about Davidson's writing is that paranormal creatures are realistic. Human. They're flawed, down-to-earth, and well-rounded characters. Even the side cast of characters are developed, adding to the overall story. Quirky. Zany. There is always humor to displace uncomfortable situations. The romance comes off as a bit cheesy at times, not super realistic, more being told by the author than the reader actually feeling it.

Delightful and entertaining, the world Davidson created was a real page-turner. So why didn't I give a higher rating?

As I said, my reading tastes have changed. While I still love paranormal romance, I need a bit more depth. Everything was there, but it was just at the surface, not delving deep enough emotionally. Either laughed off or something else occurs, to where Annette didn't fully emote what the human condition dictates she should be feeling. While this makes for a light, quick read, where most readers will find it addictively fast-paced, I just need more.



MaryJanice Davidson is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of the Undead and Unwed paranormal romcom series. Her books have been published in over a dozen languages and have been bestsellers worldwide. A former model and medical test subject (two jobs that are closer than you’d think), she lives with her family in St. Paul, MN.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Bears Behaving Badly (BeWere My Heart #1) by MaryJanice Davidson to read and review for this tour.

Cowboy for Hire by Victoria James


When a shy woman inherits a ranch, she’ll have to find an inner strength to succeed—and open herself up to love—in this heartwarming novel from New York Times bestselling author Victoria James.

Sarah Turner has led a very sheltered life. So when her parents pass away tragically, suddenly she’s left in charge of the family ranch with little know-how but plenty of will to keep it afloat. Determined not to lose her parents’ legacy or her newfound independence, she needs a hero fast—not to save her, but to show her how to save herself. But she’s unprepared for the ruggedly handsome cowboy who answers her ad.

“Cowboy for Hire,” the ad said, and Cade Walker is quick to respond. Betrayed as ranch manager by his former boss, he’s looking for a new place to put down roots—without the pressure to prove himself again. Except when he meets his new boss, it’s clear he’s not only there to run a ranch but to also teach Miss Independent how to run it. But as they struggle to make the ranch flourish, they’ll both need courage if they hope to find a family... together.

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Entangled Publishing



Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Avid Reader☆☆☆
M/F Romance

This story starts out fairly funny. Sarah's ad accidentally gets mixed up with an escort ad and she gets a lot of "cowboys" coming to her aid. But Sarah is really in need of a ranch manager who can show her how to run her ranch. She was never truly given a chance to learn. Her dad was a true believer that girls shouldn't run a ranch. But when tragedy strikes her family, Sarah knows that she has to break free of the preconceived notions that she grew up with.

Cade is a ranch manager who grew up thinking that he just wasn't good enough. Even though he found a place at a ranch, he has this underlying feeling of insecurity that follows him around. When he answers Sarah's ad, he wants to try and find his own path.

These two find themselves trying to work together while fighting their attraction. This story had a lot of potential, but it just felt a little one dimensional. Even though the characters had some baggage, they let it consume them. Also, the romance was very stilted. Overall, this needed more development.



I always knew I wanted to be a writer and in grade five, I penned my first story, bound it (with staples) and a cardboard cover and did all the illustrations myself (if you've ever seen my drawings you'll know how horrible they must have been. I still draw stick figures). Luckily, this book will never see the light of day again. In high school I fell in love with historical romance and then contemporary romance. After graduating University with an English Literature degree, I married my own hero, pursued a degree in Interior Design and then opened my own business. After the birth of our first child, I knew it was time to fulfill the dream of writing romantic fiction. I'm a hopeless romantic who is living my dream, penning happily-ever-afters for my characters in between managing kids and the family business. Writing on a laptop in the middle of the country in a rambling old Victorian house would be ideal, but I'm quite content living in suburbia with my husband, our two young children, and very bad cat.

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http://www.entangledpublishing.com/


Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Cowboy for Hire (Wishing River #2) by Victoria James to read and review.