Wednesday, August 25, 2010

NEXT! New winner announced for Maya Banks books

Drumroll please! The new winner is JODI! Congratulations, Jodi! Please contact me at with your mailing info so I can get your books out to you. I'll give Jodi until Saturday evening to get in touch.

Again, thanks to everyone who commented! I'll come up with another giveaway soon!

I hope everyone's having a great week so far! Anything fun in the works for this weekend? We're moving Kelsey back to school on Friday but have no plans for the weekend which is just fine by me!


The Back to School Blues - I'm singing them

Today was the first day of school for the city school kids here. While I feel for the kids having to get up early again and their moms and dads hustling to get them out the door, it was kind of nice to hear the buses running through the neighborhood bright and early. Who can forget the stiff squeakiness of new Ked's sneakers and new skirts and dresses. In our school district, girls weren't allowed to wear slacks until I was in the sixth grade, and I think my mom made me wait until the following school year to wear them! Jeans were allowed the next year and my elephant bells and I were all over that! The pic of the lunchbox above? Looks exactly like the one I carried all through elementary school - and I still have it! I never had the thermos though, always paid my .04 for a carton of chocolate milk. I don't think my mom trusted me not to break the glass insulated liners that thermos bottles had back then.

I miss the days of taking the girls shopping for school clothes and supplies and while lamenting this to them a week or so ago, was assured that I could take them shopping for new clothes and supplies any old time I wanted. The little smart asses. We still have one daughter in college, but it's just not the same getting her ready to move into an apartment as it was buying new pencils, crayons and glue sticks - and lunch boxes! I think the girls had new ones every single year because the nylon ones get especially gross by the end of the year.

Do you miss your school days? Have fond memories of the first day of school? Do any of you still have younger ones at home to share the excitement and promise of a new school year? My mom used to take pictures of us every single year on the first day of school, a tradition I continued with my girls. I have their first day of school photos through their senior year and trust me, by then they're much less willing to stand on the front porch to get their picture taken!

I would point out that I haven't heard from Heidi yet. If I don't hear from her by 9:00 or so this evening, I'll be drawing a new winner for the Maya Banks books.


Saturday, August 21, 2010

SORRY FOR THE DELAY - winner of Maya Banks books announced!

The winner of the six Maya Banks books is: HEIDI330! Congratulations! Please contact me by Wednesday, 8/25 with your mailing info so I can get your books out! If I don't hear from Heidi330 on Wednesday, I'll draw another winner, so check back.

Thanks so much to everyone who entered - I hope you all are having a fabulous weekend!


Monday, August 16, 2010

The winner of three Dee Davis books is ...

MELANIE! Congratulations! Please contact me at with your mailing info by Thursday, 8/19. If I don't hear from Melanie by Thursday evening, I'll choose another winner.

Thanks to everyone for your comments! I loved learning what everyone is enjoying, and have added several books to my TBB list!

Have a great week - and don't forget the contest for the Maya Banks books - I'll be drawing the winner on Thursday.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

THE DARKEST HOUR, coming soon from Maya Banks

I consider myself extremely fortunate to have won a copy of an ARC of THE DARKEST HOUR from Maya Banks in a Twitter contest. I'm not ashamed to admit that I squealed a little - okay, it was quite loudly - when I saw that I was the winner. This book is, in my opinion, the very best work from Maya Banks to date. I've read all of her "Sweet" series and most of the "Colter" series and despite being them a little more gritty and raw than books I typically choose, I enjoyed them very much. I've also read her "Kings of the Boardroom" Desires and especially adored those characters. THE DARKEST HOUR is a bit of a mix of her previous works, the edginess is there and the Alpha males are there in a very big way, but there's the sweetness and the rich emotions of the Desires too.

About the book:
It’s been one year since ex-Navy SEAL Ethan Kelly last saw his wife Rachel alive. Overwhelmed by grief and guilt over his failures as a husband, Ethan shuts himself off from everything and everyone.
His brothers have tried to bring Ethan into the KGI fold, tried to break through the barriers he's built around himself, but Ethan refuses to respond… until he receives anonymous information claiming Rachel is alive.
To save her, Ethan will have to dodge bullets, cross a jungle, and risk falling captive to a deadly drug cartel that threatens his own demise. And even if he succeeds, he’ll have to force Rachel to recover memories she can’t and doesn’t want to relive—the minute by minute terror of her darkest hour—for their love, and their lives, may depend on it.

You'll find a great excerpt here - take a minute and check it out - once you've done that, I know you'll want to go to Amazon and order your own copy. Trust me on this, you want it!

My review:
It's been a year since Ethan Kelly's wife, Rachel, was killed in a plane crash while on a humanitarian mission in the jungles of Colombia. His devastation is relentless and controls every aspect of his life, every day of his life. A year to the day after Rachel's death, Ethan receives a priority package with GPS coordinates and photos that suggest Rachel is alive. He convinces his brothers, whose business is Kelly Group International (KGI), specializing in kidnap and hostage recoveries, to help him in rescuing Rachel. His brothers are doubtful that the female in the grainy photos is Rachel but realize that whether it's Rachel or not, the person is a victim and is being held against her will. Upon arrival at the specified location, they're met with intense resistance and eventually remove Rachel. Sadly, she's suffering a partial amnesia and doesn't fully recognize, or trust, some of the Kelly brothers. The conditions in which Rachel has been held, and the changes in her because of the harshness, are heartbreakingly difficult for Ethan and his brothers. She definitely isn't the same woman they knew and it pains them greatly to know the trauma she's suffered for an entire year without them knowing.
In a way, Rachel's amnesia and the drugs that her captors have been pumping into her, are a bit of a blessing as far as masking the passage of time. In every other way, it's a sad injustice. She's grateful to have been rescued, but now has to deal with the stark realities of an addiction she had no control over as well as a family that for the most part she doesn't remember. The Kellys quickly realize that repeated accidents now befalling Rachel aren't accidents at all and someone is out to get her. Ethan is struggling as much as Rachel, knowing that when her memory fully returns she'll remember secrets that he hasn't been strong enough to reveal. Secrets that just might tear them apart forever.
THE DARKEST HOUR is intriguing and suspenseful and Maya Banks, in writing Rachel's drug addiction, takes her heroine where I personally believe few authors would dare. Descriptions of jungle conditions and dangers, the desperations of Rachel's withdrawal, and Ethan's pain and confusion over her psychological state, become almost tangible. I found myself repeatedly experiencing those little tugs in my chest at the multitude of emotions that the characters experienced - a sure sign of a well-written love story. A side story involving Ethan's parents adds circumstances that serve well in exposing the dynamics of this fascinating family. I give THE DARKEST HOUR my strongest recommendation and can't wait for the December release of NO PLACE TO RUN, followed by HIDDEN AWAY in March, 2011. Romantic suspense fans do not want to miss the Kelly brothers! And don't forget the upcoming FOUR PLAY a two-author anthology with Shayla Black.
I'm going to celebrate the release of THE DARKEST HOUR with a Maya Banks giveaway. No, I'm not giving Maya herself away, but I have six books up for grabs - three books in the "Sweet" series together with the three in the Desire series. Some of these are autographed and some aren't. The reason I'm willing to let them go? I have all of these books on my Kindle now and am trying to clear out some of the print books that I have on Kindle, so it's a big win for a lucky reader here! Interested? Sure you are! Leave a comment saying so, and if you let us know your favorite book by Maya Banks, even better! No worries if you haven't read her work yet, you can admit that too! I'll allow plenty of time for entries and will draw a winning name on Thursday, August 19.
Please remember to read the disclaimer on the left - if the winner doesn't reply within the time specified when announced, another winner will be drawn. I do not track winners down.
Thanks for taking the time to check this one out!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A triple "Double D" giveaway!

Hopefully you've read my reviews and checked out the excerpts that Author Dee Davis has on her website. I now have these three books on my Kindle and have decided to do a giveaway for my review ARCs. Dee Davis writes some of the best romantic suspense available today, so if you're a RS fan like me, you'll want your name in the draw!
I hope that if you enjoy these books, you'll consider posting some positive chatter about them on Amazon. I was excited to learn in an email from Ms. Davis that there are three more books contracted in this series - yay!!

Interested? Just leave a comment about what you're reading, have read, are getting ready to read or what book(s) you're especially anticipating. I'll let this one run a while, until next Monday the 16th, when I'll draw a winner from the comments. Send your friends over, ok? I'll enter you an extra time for each friend who mentions your name.

I hope everyone has a great week and that you're not sweltering. I realize it's August in central Ohio, but I swear that age and gender are working against me this summer as I've struggled with the heat.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

DESPERATE DEEDS, new from Dee Davis!

Author Dee Davis has another new book on the shelves! DESPERATE DEEDS is available now, and I can't stress enough how much I enjoyed this series. Ms. Davis has excerpts on her website; I hope you'll check them out. I saw that a couple of reviewers felt that this book fell down on the job, not pulling it's weight as the third in the series. I couldn't disagree more. I think this series was painstakingly researched and superbly written and I was not disappointed in the least. If you've read any or all of the books in this series, please share your thoughts.
When Tyler meets Owen Wakefield, a handsome British operative, she seduces him with no intention of ever seeing him again. But then the sexy Brit is brought into A-Tac, and despite Tyler’s efforts to keep her distance, she finds herself falling for him. Trusting him.
Owen seems too good to be true—and he is. He’s hiding his true motives and identity, and no matter how he feels about Tyler, he can’t keep her secrets. One of A-Tac’s members has turned traitor and helped terrorists to hijack a shipment of nuclear weapons. As witnesses start dying and evidence starts disappearing, Owen and Tyler must race to find the mole—and prevent a final, cataclysmic act of destruction.

My Romance Junkies (4.5 blue ribbon) review:
Author Dee Davis has done some serious stirring of the romantic suspense pot with DESPERATE DEEDS – mixing a beautiful demolitions expert working under the guise of an ivy league English professor with a British agent whose smooth seductions are as impressive as his capability as an MI-5 agent.
When a mission goes suspiciously wrong, A-Tac demolitions expert Tyler Hanson decides to blow off steam with an evening fuel by alcohol and a heated one night stand with a gorgeous Brit. At the next A-Tac meeting, Tyler discovers that her one night stand is none other than British MI-5 agent, Owen Wakefield, and he’s been assigned to work with A-Tac. Even more disturbing, Tyler’s suspected of being responsible for the attack that left two soldiers dead and several highly sophisticated detonators missing. Her anger at being a suspect is short-lived as she deals with a budding relationship with Owen, her larger than life Army general father’s struggle with Alzheimer’s and one violent incident after another, including the deaths of some of the people closest to Tyler. It soon appears that there’s someone on the inside working against A-Tac.
Owen Wakefield finds himself in a difficult situation. Placed with the A-Tac team, he finds himself a stranger, but is quickly welcomed to assist in the investigation. On the other hand, his boss is pushing him to find evidence, by any means, that Tyler was personally involved with the missing weaponry. Confident that the evidence points to someone else, Owen’s determination to keep Tyler alive is first and foremost.
As with the previous books, A-Tac is made up of the highly intelligent CIA team of men and women who perform double duty as ivy league professors while their government jobs are intensely precise and extremely dangerous. It is obvious that Ms. Davis has done her research to bring readers characters with the knowledge and expertise to carry out both roles. This is the third book in what I have found to be an outstanding series, following DARK DECEPTIONS and DANGEROUS DESIRES. I was pleased that this third book didn’t lose momentum; the intrigue and suspense is just as strong. Tyler’s father’s Alzheimer’s adds a touch of painful reality, and previous characters are key to the story but allow the focus to remain on Tyler and Owen. I highly recommend DESPERATE DEEDS and hope that all readers who enjoy well-written romantic suspense will check out this series by Dee Davis.

Now, if I've done my job, you'll want to buzz over to Amazon and get your own copy! I recommend starting at the beginning of the series with DARK DECEPTIONS and DANGEROUS DESIRES, before reading DESPERATE DEEDS.
Thanks for having a look!