The Last Wolf by Maria Vale – Spotlight and Giveaway

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Maria Vale who is visiting with us and sharing some early excerpts from The Last Wolf, the first book in her The Legend of All Wolves series, which will be released in February. Maria is giving away 2 advance copies of The Last Wolf and 2 posters – enter at the end of the post.

For three days out of thirty, when the moon is full and her law is iron, the Great North Pack must be wild.

If she returns to her Pack, the stranger will die.
But if she stays…

Silver Nilsdottir is at the bottom of her Pack’s social order, with little chance for a decent mate and a better life. Until the day a stranger stumbles into their territory, wounded and beaten, and Silver decides to risk everything on Tiberius Leveraux. But Tiberius isn’t all he seems, and in the fragile balance of the Pack and wild, he may tip the destiny of all wolves…

Enjoy an Excerpt

In which Tiberius eats dinner with the hostile Pack and learns that not everything that is small and cute and furry is a puppy

Upstairs, the screen door opens and closes with a slam. Orders are barked out, and heavy treads stomp back and forth between hall and kitchen. As the Pack passes the stairs to the basement, the complex fragrances of the dishes they’re carrying waft down to us. Benches start scraping across floors, and I push Ti’s extra clothes into a bag and push the man himself up the stairs.

As soon as we reach the hall, the smile I hadn’t even known I was wearing fades. The Alphas of every echelon are standing around the heavy hand-scraped tables, each one of them holding tight onto their seaxs, the sharp daggers that all adult Pack wear at their waist.

There are strict penalties for attacking a table guest, and John will kill anyone who tries, but edgy wolves are edgy wolves and not always in control. I am this man’s shielder, and I face them, my thighs coiled low, my shoulders squared, and my lips curled back from my teeth, so these wolves know that I will fight, even in skin.

Tock, tock, tock.

Behind me, Ti is not even facing the right way. He’s looking at the table, opening up casseroles with one hand, while flicking his spoon up and down against his bowl with the thumb of the other (tock, tock, tock). As though there weren’t a hundred evil-eyed wolves staring holes into his back.

He lifts a hand-thrown lid and sniffs the saag paneer. Another basket with bread. A selection of Corningware casseroles hold cauliflower and lentil stew; sun-dried tomatoes and fresh cheese; corn chowder. Pasta with herbs. Egg salad.

“So…you’re vegetarians?” Ti says to no one in particular.

“Not vegetarians,” John answers. “But not carrion eaters either. You are our guest,” he says loudly to remind all the wolves with itchy palms about our very ancient and very strict rules of hospitality, “and free to hunt anywhere on our land, but Shifter? You must eat what you kill.”

“John?” I whisper, pulling at his elbow, and he bends down. “His name?”

John scratches his graying beard for a moment before pointing to one casserole dish in Blue Onion pattern. “Tiberius?” he says, “My personal favorite is the cauliflower and lentils. Be sure to add some toasted hazelnuts.”

Someone coughs, but John has broken the spell, and the Alphas reclaim their seats. Though when they do, they seem to have doubled in size, their broad shoulders and thighs now claiming whatever spare space we might have squeezed into.

I bend my head toward one of the empty tables. Those too will be full when the Offlanders come home for the Iron Moon, but for now, we sit there alone, side by side. The Pack starts talking again, bent low over their food because our table manners at home are not all they should be.

Naturally, there is a lot of talk about Ti, and while no one will question John’s decision, it is one of the peculiarities of the Old Tongue that the word giest means guest and stranger and enemy, so when someone speaks of our new giest, everyone understands the double meaning.

Then John says that’s enough Old Tongue for now.

A handful of pups scrabble up the stairs from the basement storage. They’re chasing something, taking wide frantic turns around the room.

“Mouse,” I whisper to Ti. “They don’t last long here.”

“She didn’t take me down,” Eudemos complains loudly.

“I mean, I was still standing.” He hacks at the big loaf of bread with his seax. “Where’sa butter?

“I neber submided,” he insists, a pale-yellow crumb flying across the table. He uses his thumb to push the mouthful back in. “If what she did counts as submitting now, I think we should change the laws, thass all I’m sayin’.”

“Deemer?” says John.

Victor, our Deemer, our thinker about Pack law, crosses his arms and looks at the ceiling for a moment. “The law does say an opponent must be pinned down,” he says. “But while Eudemos was not down, he was very definitely pinned, and that is the more important part of the law.”

“Your Alpha agrees. The spirit of the law was upheld.”

And with that, Eudemos will not say another word about the matter.

The mouse finally caught, Golan trots up to John, followed by a roiling mass of fur. He lays his tiny prey at the Alpha’s feet. John looks at it, making sure the kill was clean and the mouse didn’t suffer, then he scratches Golan’s ear and wishes him good eating.

Suddenly, Ti jumps and lowers his hand to fend off a juvenile, who has her damp nose in his crotch.

“Rainy!” shouts Gran Moira. “Come here!”

Rainy cocks her head to the side and stares up at Ti before running off.

“Why do you have so many dogs?” Ti asks, his legs now tightly crossed.

“Nooo,” I hiss. “They’re not…” It’s too late. He didn’t say it loudly, but our hearing is very good, and one set of very good ears is all that’s needed. One by one, the Pack falls silent, appalled by what Ti has called our children.

Four fuzzy snouts peek over the arm of one of the fireplace sofas. Other pups glower down from the curved stairs that lead up to the children’s quarters.

Then the only sound is the brittle crunch of Golan’s sharp, white teeth.

“Excuse me, Shifter?” pipes a small voice. A ten-year-old girl with long, pale-brown curls, wearing shorts and a much-washed blue T-shirt with a picture of a pickle on it, scratches the back of her calf with a bare foot. “I am sorry I smelled your crutch?” she says, glancing back at Gran Moira, who mouths the word crotch with an encouraging smile. “But that’s what I said. ‘Crutch.’”

“It’s ‘crotch,’” corrects Gran Moira.

“Oh,” Rainy says, turning back to Ti. “I am sorry I smelled your crotch? I didn’t mean to be offensive. I am just in the Year of First Shoes?”

The Year of First Shoes is the first twelve moons in the juvenile wing, when you’re too old to scamper around and be fed tidbits from the table, and you’re too young to see even the remotest advantage to being human. It’s when we first wear shoes and clothes.

It is a terrible, terrible time.

About the Author:
Maria Vale is a journalist who has worked for Publishers Weekly, Glamour magazine, Redbook, the Philadelphia Inquirer. She is a logophile and a bibliovore and a worrier about the world. Trained as a medievalist, she tries to shoehorn the language of Beowulf into things that don’t really need it. She currently lives in New York with her husband, two sons and a long line of dead plants. No one will let her have a pet.

Website

Buy the book at Amazon, Books-A-Million, Barnes & Noble, Chapters, iBooks, or Indiebound.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Writing a Series by Joe Cosentino – Guest Post and Giveaway


Long and Short Reviews welcomes back Joe Cosentino to talk about his upcoming release The Perfect Gift. Check out his giveaway at the bottom of the page.

Writing a Series
by Joe Cosentino
I remember as a pre-schooler watching Search for Tomorrow and As The World Turns on television with my mother. Carrying on the family tradition as I grew older and went to school, at lunchtime I’d watch All My Children, and after school I’d hurry home for Dark Shadows and Edge of Night. What I found so captivating about these television serials was how the characters, relationships, and stories continued over a long period of time. Instead of getting involved in a character’s life only to never see him/her again after two hours, those characters became our friends, family, and loved ones over many years. We laughed when they laughed, cried when they cried, and felt romantic when they had romances. We advised them in our heads, rejoiced with their happiness, and pounded our fists against our chests when all was lost. However, tomorrow always came with a new set of stories for our favorite characters.

It was an incredibly exciting time for me when as a young actor in New York City, I won a role on Another World. Wouldn’t you know, it was the one daytime drama I had never watched. I was a snitch for the show’s very popular villain, Carl Hutchins, played by Charles Keating. The job only lasted a week, but it was great fun.

So, it came as no surprise that when I began writing novels, I would revel in creating series. Currently, I am up to eight Nicky and Noah mystery novels (five published so far), four Cozzi Cove beach novels (four published at this point), five Jana Lane mysteries, and I’m writing my second Tales from Fairyland. However, what I’m here to talk about today are my Bobby and Paolo holiday stories published by Dreamspinner Press. That series started with my popular novella and audiobook performed by Joel Leslie, A Home for the Holidays. The story chronicled the relationship between young American law student Bobby and his sexy, muscular, handsome Italian distant cousin Paolo after they met and fell in love in the gorgeous, magical Island of Capri. Now comes my two-part novella beginning a year after A Home for the Holidays ends. Bobby and Paolo are living in Philadelphia as a junior lawyer and junior fashion designer. When Paolo proposes, Bobby’s family and friends are intent on giving the couple a gaudy, elaborate wedding against their wishes. Bobby and Paolo jump through quite a few holiday hoops and finally have their perfect December wedding (December Grooms). A year later, since it’s again Christmas time, the couple tour many of the quaint and wonderful holiday sites in their area featuring elaborately decorated trees and wreathes, Dickensian villages, Victorian carolers and bell ringers, vendors selling hot mulled cider and roasted chestnuts, and bay-windowed shops. They exchange beautiful gifts, and enjoy spending Christmas with Bobby’s eccentric family and hilarious friend Jared. While playing department store Santa, Bobby’s father suffers a heart attack. A man in a Santa suit, who Bobby assumes is his father’s replacement, brings the young couple to the hospital room of a sick little boy. Could this boy be the holiday gift leading to happily ever after for Bobby and Paolo (An Unexpected Present)?

Will there be a third Bobby and Paolo holiday novella? I’m writing it now. As I mentioned, the stories always continue.

Thank you, readers, for your love, support, and requests for more Bobby and Paolo holiday stories. I hope you get lots of surprises in your holiday stocking, including something you never knew you needed. Enjoy my special holiday gift novella to you. Please know that it comes wrapped in a huge ribbon of love.

THE PERFECT GIFT (Bobby and Paolo Holiday Stories, Book 2)
by JOE COSENTINO
published by Dreamspinner Press, e-book $4.99

Back in America after finding A Home for the Holidays and each other in Capri, new couple Bobby McGrath and Paolo Mascobello are ready to tie the knot during the winter holidays. Their families, friends, and pastor offer more advice than sages on speed. So, young lawyer Bobby and fashion designer Paolo are caught in the matrimonial holiday circus. Will a shocking turn of events somehow lead to the perfect wedding for the December grooms?

The following Christmas, Bobby and Paolo aren’t feeling the holiday spirit. They have a nice apartment, designer clothes, entertaining and supportive friends and family, but little time for each other. While out shopping in their quaint local holiday village, Bobby and Paolo encounter Gregory, an adorable seven-year-old who changes their lives forever, offering them a true holiday miracle… if they’re willing to accept it.

Enjoy an Excerpt from The Perfect Gift

A few minutes later, Paolo and I sat across from each other at our cherry dining room table. The scent of Italian cheeses, garlic, olive oil, mushrooms, spinach, and chicken filled the room. Between bites, Paolo asked, “What is it that you wanted to ask me?” The candlelight from our antique brass candleholders made him look incredibly sexy. He didn’t need much help.

I took in a deep breath. Though I had rehearsed my speech a hundred times over the last few months, what came out was, “I bought lemon gelato for dessert.”

He blew me a kiss. I caught it and placed it over my heart. Ready for take two, I took a sip of my herbal tea in a failed attempt at moistening my bone-dry throat. “Paolo, we’ve been living together for almost a year now.”

“Are you tired of me already?” He winked at me.

I slid to the edge of my seat. “During that time, have you… did you ever think about….”

He swallowed his food. “Bobby, I told you before. I look at other men. But you are the only one I want.”

“And you’re the only one I want.”

“Then it is a good thing we live together.” He continued eating.

“Do you miss your life in the villa with your family in Capri?”

“Not when I am with you. Don’t worry; we will never end up like Edgar and everyone else getting a divorce.”

“Why not?”

“Because we do not need a piece of paper to validate our love.”

The lawyer in me surfaced. “That piece of paper would enable us to make healthcare decisions for each other in emergency situations, and to protect our wills from a family member who might want to contest them.”

What reviewers said about A Home for the HolidaysK/I>, Bobby and Paolo Holiday Stories, Book 1:

“I adore the character of Bobby…the heartwarming family moments…the love the author has for Capri and the people there flows off the page in every word he has written…..When you finish reading this story, you will want to book your own flight to Italy and boat to Capri.” Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

“Joe Cosentino’s holiday novella, A Home for the Holidays, delivers in every way that a romantic, feel-good story should. Every book I read by this author continuously pulls me in and wraps me up like a warm blanket.” Kathy Mac Reviews

“The one thing you can’t escape when reading Cosentino’s books is his humour; it’s what draws me back time and again to this author. Sometimes the humour is subtle, sometimes it’s unashamedly overt – every time it is hilarious.” Boy Meets Boy Reviews

I’m going to go on record saying that Joe Cosentino pretty much has me at hello. His writing style is incredibly smooth with beautiful details that never feel like too much or too little. Even in this very short story, I felt like I was right there in Capri with Bobby. Both the scenery and Bobby’s emotions are painted with lush, vivid detail…exceptional writing and beautifully gift-wrapped love story.” AM Leibowitz

About the Author: Bestselling author Joe Cosentino wrote In My Heart/An Infatuation & A Shooting Star, the Bobby and Paolo Holiday stories: A Home for the Holidays and The Perfect Gift, The Naked Prince and Other Tales from Fairyland (Dreamspinner Press); the Nicky and Noah mysteries: Drama Queen, Drama Muscle, Drama Cruise, (Lethe Press), Drama Luau, Drama Detective; the Cozzi Cove series: Cozzi Cove: Bouncing Back, Cozzi Cove: Moving Forward, Cozzi Cove: Stepping Out, Cozzi Cove: New Beginnings (NineStar Press); and the Jana Lane mysteries: Paper Doll, Porcelain Doll, Satin Doll, China Doll, Rag Doll (The Wild Rose Press). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, Charles Keating, and Jason Robards. Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. He was voted 1st Place Favorite LGBT Mystery, Humorous, and Contemporary Author of 2015, and 2nd Place Favorite LGBT Romance Author of 2015 by the readers of Divine Magazine. He has also won many Rainbow Award Honorable Mentions including for In My Heart/An Infatuation & A Shooting Star.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon Author Page
Buy the book at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

Giveaway: Post a comment about your favorite holiday gift. The one that reaches the star on the tree will win a gift audiobook of A Home for the Holidays, Bobby and Paolo Holiday Stories Book 1, by Joe Cosentino, performed by Joel Leslie, published by Dreamspinner Press.

Lovesick Gods by Amanda Meuwissen – Exclusive Excerpt and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Amanda will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

The elements touch everyone on Earth—Fire, Water, even Light—but every so often someone becomes more attuned to their elemental leaning and develops true power. When an evil Elemental known as Thanatos arrived in Olympus City, it saw the rise of its first hero—Zeus. But the death toll caused by defeating Thanatos changed Zeus, who by day is young detective Danny Grant.

It’s been six months since Thanatos terrorized the city at the start of Lovesick Gods. Danny should be used to his duty behind the mask, but the recent past haunts him. His girlfriend left him, he snaps at the barest provocation, his life feels empty—he needs an outlet, any outlet to pull him out of his depression.

Enter notorious thief Malcolm Cho, the Ice Elemental Prometheus. There was a time when Danny welcomed a fight with Cho, filled with colorful banter and casual flirtations that were a relief compared to Thanatos. Even as a criminal, Cho had recognized the threat Thanatos posed and promised to help Danny stop him, but the day Danny needed Cho, he never showed. Cho was the reason so many people died that day—including Danny’s mother.

Danny decides to teach the man a lesson and fan the fire of their attraction into something more. At worst, he’ll get some no-strings-attached sex out of the deal and finally blow off steam; at best, he’ll get Cho to fall in love with him and then break his heart to spite him. Danny doesn’t expect to fall for Cho in the process, and he certainly can’t predict the much darker threat on the horizon.

Enjoy an Exclusive Excerpt

Dropping his hands to the collar of Danny’s jacket, Mal pushed it from his shoulders. Danny wouldn’t release his hold on Mal, so the jacket caught at his elbows and Mal reached for his jeans instead. As soon as his fingers brushed the skin of Danny’s stomach, the hand at Mal’s head and the other dipping low along his backside started to spark with a tingle of electricity.

Mal startled. It should have hurt, should have shocked him like a jolt of static on a cold, dry day—he’d felt Danny’s lightning offensively before, and it was not a pleasant experience—but this was different.

Automatic reactions out of self-defense or eruptions from extreme emotion were one thing, but usually only children who’d just Awakened had trouble controlling their abilities. Though, to be fair, Danny had been an Elemental for only a year. Mal never would have allowed his powers to get out of hand like that, but even as he thought the reprimand, his ice seemed to stir in response, wanting to creep over his skin like frost and seek Danny’s lightning out.

Fighting to hold his ice at bay, he was still intoxicated by the tingling sensation from Danny.

“Sorry!” Danny jerked away once he realized what was happening and reined his sparks back in.

“No,” Mal said, already missing the strange, enthralling buzz. “Do it again.”

Danny’s puzzled expression made him look so young as he stared back at Mal, but when those words caught up to him, he grinned.

About the Author: Amanda Meuwissen has been writing and posting online for many years, including maintaining the website and blog for the software company Outsell. She is an avid writer and consumer of fiction through film, prose, and video games, and is the author of the paranormal romance trilogy The Incubus Saga and young adult novel Life as a Teenage Vampire. Amanda lives in Minneapolis, MN, with her husband, John, and their two cats.

Website | Tumblr | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter
The book is on sale for $0.99 during the tour at Amazon.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Once Upon a Christmas Eve by Elizabeth Hoyt – Spotlight and Giveaway


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by the publisher to celebrate the release of Once Upon a Christmas Eve, a Maiden Lane novella by Elizabeth Hoyt – only $1.99! Enter the giveaway to win one of 15 digital copies the publisher is giving away.

Adam Rutledge, Viscount d’Arque, really rather loathes Christmas. The banal cheerfulness. The asinine party games. And, worst of all, the obligatory trip to the countryside. His grandmother, however, loves the holiday—and Adam loves his grandmother, so he’ll brave the fiercest snowstorm to please her. But when their carriage wheel snaps, they’re forced to seek shelter at the home of the most maddening, infuriating, and utterly beguiling woman he’s ever met . . .

Sarah St. John really rather loathes rakes. The self-satisfied smirks. The sly predatory gazes. Oh, and the constant witty banter rife with double meaning. But in the spirit of the season, she’ll welcome this admittedly handsome viscount into her home. But as the snowstorm rages, the Yule log crackles, and the tension rises, Sarah and Adam find themselves locked in a fiery, passionate kiss. If love is the true meaning of Christmas, it’s the one gift this mismatched pair can’t wait to unwrap.

About the Author: Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times bestselling author of over seventeen lush historical romances including the Maiden Lane series. Publishers Weekly has called her writing “mesmerizing.” She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with three untrained dogs, a garden in constant need of weeding, and the long-suffering Mr. Hoyt.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | BookBub | Amazon Author Page

Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks, Google, or Kobo.

Anne Elizabeth’s Favorite Holiday Traditions: Raise Your Voice – Guest Blog and Giveaway

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Anne Elizabeth as she shares one of her favorite holiday traditions. Enter to win one of five copies of The Power of a SEAL.

RAISE YOUR VOICE
Holiday songs remind me of my childhood. Attending church with my parents and brother, and listening to the exuberance with which the congregation sang inspired intense warmth and comfort. Voices lifted in song varied from out-of-key to perfectly pitched tones, and it was wondrous! Each individual contributed to the joy as we created these beautiful sounds together.

After services, most of the congregation was full of cheer and would hurry outside for hot cocoa or tea. With cups in hand, we walked as a group down to the live action crèche. It was here that we sang the last Christmas song of the night, Away In The Manger. Of course, the goats bleated and donkeys brayed along with the clucking chickens and mooing cow; and all the sounds blended together. To this day, I still wonder if the animals were commenting or singing along.

Do you have a special holiday song, and why is it a favorite?

With over two decades of experience, Navy SEAL Leaper Lefton is bringing his expertise to young and impressionable SEAL trainees in BUD/s. As an instructor, he knows he must prepare them for all kinds of situations—and there’s a perfect opportunity for hands-on training when he spots a woman in danger in rough water. Kerry Hamilton, a marine mammal veterinarian for the U.S. Navy is beyond grateful when Leaper saves her from the rough seas, and their attraction is instant. But after everything Leaper has been through, can he truly love again? And is Kerry willing to give him the chance?

About the Author:New York Times bestselling author Anne Elizabeth is an award-winning romance author and a popular comic creator. With a BS in business and MS in communications from Boston University, she is a regular presenter at conventions as well as a member of the Author’s Guild, Horror Writers Association, and Romance Writers of America. Anne lives with her husband, a retired Navy SEAL, in the mountains above San Diego.

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble | Chapters | iBooks | Indiebound

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Love on the Tracks by Tamsen Parker – Spotlight


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by the publisher to celebrate the release of Tamsen Parker‘s newest book Love on the Tracks.

Welcome to the Snow and Ice Games where the competition is fierce and the romance is HOT.

Rowan Andrews is the unexpected darling of the Denver Snow and Ice Games. Luge has never captured the American public’s imagination as much as figure skating or even hockey, but her outsized personality and dare-devil ways have got everyone’s eyes glued to the track. Including a certain chart-topping heartthrob.

Zane Rivera is the lead singer of License to Game, the hottest band in the country. When Zane finds out Rowan Andrews has had some complimentary things to say about him, he arranges to meet her while he’s in Denver enjoying the games. And when a photo of him kissing Rowan on the cheek goes viral, they both see the advantages of faking a relationship for the publicity.

After Rowan’s injured in her final race, their relationship starts to feel all too real to Zane. But is this rock star ready to fall in love?

Enjoy an Excerpt

When I see the now-familiar black Land Rover idling by the corner, and the rear driver’s side door opens to let Zane out into the chilly evening, it doesn’t feel so complicated. He smiles at me, and rubs his bare hands together—guy should invest in some gloves before he starts going to the outdoor events.

I don’t know where it comes from, but that bold part of me wells up and swamps all my doubts and insecurities. This is supposed to be fun. I’m supposed to be having fun. What would be fun would be to kiss the incredibly good-looking guy who’s smiling at me as though I’m the only person on earth even though I’m well aware of being trailed by half a dozen photographers.
So I walk right up and lay my mittened hands on his chest and go up on tip-toe to kiss him. His scruff brushes against my chin, and his lips move against my mouth, and then his hands are in my hair. My hair. He’s never done that before, and the way his fingers thread through my hair to sculpt around my head and hold me fast to kiss me . . . I’m accustomed to adrenaline rushes. Half my life is spent trying to go a fraction of a second faster and risking my life to do it. There’s not a whole lot that can beat out hurtling down an icy tunnel and barreling around corners with five Gs pulling at you, but this might be it.
It’s so stupid. It’s not as if I’ve never been kissed before. But I’ve never been kissed quite like this. His tongue teases the seam of my lips and I open for him, wanting him more, wanting more of him. It’s not until I hear someone say loudly, “Hey, isn’t that Zane Rivera?” that I remember we’re in public.

Flashes are going off, and I can hear the crowd starting to form around us. As much as I’d like to keep kissing Zane, we’ve got to get out of here. He must feel the same way because he doesn’t resist when I break off our kiss, only lays a hand on my lower back to steady me and then help me into the Land Rover, waving at the crowd and smiling as he does.

Is this his life? I can handle the attention for concentrated bursts, but for Zane it may be more like a years-long slog with extra crazy sauce drizzled on top when they go on tour or to an awards show, or apparently when they kiss SIG athletes.

Once he’s firmly shut and locked the door and given the driver the go-ahead, he turns to me. Cups my jaw with a hand and runs his thumb over my cheek. It’s the sweetest way anyone’s ever touched me and it makes all these gooey romantic feelings drip out of my heart and spread through my whole body.

“You okay, Row? You look a little shell-shocked.”

That’s how I feel. Or like game being chased by a pack of well-trained hounds. Yeah, I suppose it is open season on us right now. I’m so unsettled, I can’t even really enjoy that he called me Row, just like I’d fantasized he would. “I’m okay, I’m not used to . . .” I wave to the people still crowding the car, trying to snap pictures with their cellphones and long-lensed cameras through the tinted glass. “This.”

Zane’s hand falls away from my face, and I wish he would put it back. Instead, he reaches over and buckles my seatbelt before tucking me under his arm—well, as far as the seatbelt will allow. “I don’t think people ever get used to it. At least the people I know don’t. Sick of it, yeah, but it’s always shocking, always makes me tense up, you know?”

He shivers, probably in an exaggerated way to make me feel better. It does. And the way he called me Row, which I’m getting to relish while replaying it in my head. That’s the first time, but I hope it won’t be the last.

“Still want to go to the movie?”

“Yeah, I’ve been looking forward to it all day.”

He smiles that charming smile and it makes me wonder how many girls he’s smiled at like this before. Probably a million. He’s only picked me to smile at for now because it’ll sell him some records. Well, that’s fine. We can have fun while we play the media.

“Me too.”

About the Author: Tamsen Parker is a stay-at-home mom by day, USA Today bestselling erotic romance writer by naptime. Her novella CRAVING FLIGHT was named to the Best of 2015 lists of Heroes and Heartbreakers, Smexy Books, Romance Novel News, and Dear Author. Heroes and Heartbreakers called her Compass series “bewitching, humorous, erotically intense and emotional.” She lives with her family outside of Boston, where she tweets too much, sleeps too little and is always in the middle of a book. Aside from good food, sweet rieslings and gin cocktails, she has a fondness for monograms and subway maps. She should really start drinking coffee.

Website | Facebook | Twitter
Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or iBooks.

Slammed by Victoria Denault – Spotlight and Giveaway

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Victoria Denault who is celebrating the book birthday of Slammed, part of the San Francisco Thunder series and the Romance Pick for Amazon’s Best of December 2017! Congratulations, Victoria. Enter the giveaway at the end of the post for a chance to win a copy of the first book in the series Score.

Eli Casco is on the brink of having everything he ever wanted. He’s just been called up from the minor leagues to play goalie for the San Francisco Thunder hockey team. And he just had the most mind-blowing night with the woman of his dreams. But now that he’ll be in the same town, she’s completely shutting him down.

Dixie Braddock loves her job as a publicist for the Thunder. But as much as she’s always enjoyed doing the long-distance flirting thing with Eli, dating him now would ruin her hard-won reputation, just when she’s up for promotion. He’s the last distraction she needs on top of team shenanigans and an ailing father. But the more time they spend together, the harder it is to keep to her hands-off policy-especially when Eli is making all the right moves to play for keeps.

Enjoy an Excerpt

“It’s raining!”

“So? Are you made of sugar, sweet Dixie?” he asks and keeps pulling me down the street. “Live a little. Be a little reckless.”

So we walk, on a Sunday night in the pouring rain, down the dark, almost abandoned streets. And somehow, for the first time in a very, very long time – since before my father’s diagnosis, since before my double life working in PR, since before I decided I had to be a glass-ceiling-busting corporate badass – I feel completely at peace. And maybe it’s the rain, maybe it’s the way the water is slipping down over my soaked hair and dripping into my ears and drowning my common sense or washing away my well-thought-out life goals, but all I want to do is kiss him.

We start to walk by an alley so I step into it, pulling him with me. And then with all the strength I have, I grab him by the front of his jacket, shove him against the damp brick wall, rock up on my toes, and kiss him. My lips cover his perfectly. And our tongues move together with matching need and urgency. He reaches up and cups the side of my face as he pulls away just enough to talk. “Do you know what you’re doing here, sweet Dixie? What about the rules?”

“I’ve played by the rules enough today.” I let my hand slip between us and palm the front of his jeans. “I think it’s time to give this reckless thing a chance. Just for tonight.”

I start to lower his zipper, and the way his eyes widen makes me smile. I kiss him again, tugging on his plump bottom lip for just a second as it ends and I slip my hand into his open fly. My fingers brush against his shaft and he punches his hips forward. “You should come home with me.”

He wraps his arm an arm around my waist and lifts me, spinning us around so it’s my back against the wet bricks. “We’re supposed to be reckless here.”

His breath tickles my neck, and then I feel his lips on my earlobe. “There’s nothing reckless about fucking at home.”

“Everything about us is reckless,” I remind him in a whisper.

“Then let’s act like it.”

About the Author:Victoria Denault loves long walks on the beach, cinnamon dolce lattes and writing angst-filled romance. She lives in L.A. but grew up in Montreal, which is why she is fluent in English, French and hockey.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest| Instagram | Goodreads | BookBub | Amazon

Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, iBooks, Google Play, Books A Million, or IndieBound.

Wolf Hunger by Paige Tyler – Spotlight and Giveaway

Long and Short Reviews is excited to welcome back Paige Tyler who is visiting with us today to celebrate today’s release of her newest book Wolf Hunger, the 7th book in her SWAT series. Enter to win a copy of Wolf Hunt, which released in June.

She’s all the wolf he’ll ever need

When SWAT Officer Max Lowry meets Lana Mason, he falls fast and hard. He’s positive she’s The One. And Max’s favorite part? Lana’s a wolf shifter too, so they can skip the awkward reveal and head straight to the happily ever after. There’s just one problem: Lana doesn’t know that she’s a werewolf.

To make matters worse, hunters with intent to kill have tracked Lana to Dallas. Max has to figure out how to keep Lana safe, show her who and what she really is—and just how much she means to him.

Enjoy an Excerpt

“Speaking of award ceremonies,” she said to Max, “I didn’t see you on the stage getting a commendation, so I’m guessing you must be here to support someone who did?”

He nodded. “Yeah. Some of the members of my team got recognized today. How about you? Your boyfriend getting a commendation?”

Max thought he was being pretty damn smooth, but the smile tugging at Lana’s lips told him she saw right through his deception.

“Nope, no boyfriend,” she said. “Actually, it was my dad. Brandy took forever getting dressed. Then we got stuck in traffic. We barely made it here in time to see him get the award. I had to watch from the back of the auditorium.”

That explained why Max hadn’t picked up Lana’s luscious scent earlier. And while he was relieved she didn’t have a boyfriend, it made him wonder which of his fellow cops getting a commendation this afternoon could possibly have a daughter this smokin’ hot.

Max opened his mouth to ask her who her father was when another DPD officer walked by with a plate filled with a collection of various hors d’oeuvres. While Max wasn’t impressed with the selection of food, Lana looked at the appetizers longingly, even though she still had the ones her friend had given her. Maybe she wasn’t big on squash blossoms. He didn’t blame her.

“Would you like me to get you something else to eat?” he asked.

She glanced down at her plate, then shook her head. “Thanks, but unfortunately, the spinach puffs were the only thing remotely edible, which is probably why they’re all gone. I can’t believe they’re trying to pass this stuff off as food.”

He grinned. “I was just thinking the same thing a little while ago. I’m planning to head out as soon as this thing is over so I can get some real food.”

She leaned in close and gave him a conspiratorial wink. “Maybe we can slip out now while no one is looking. I can drop my car keys off with Brandy and we can disappear into the night. I’d just about kill for a slice of pizza.”

Any other time, Max would have been stoked to hear that. In his opinion, there wasn’t anything sexier than a woman who loved pizza. But right then, all he could think about was how his body was reacting to Lana’s nearness. Not only was his pulse racing, but his claws and fangs were dangerously close to coming out. He only hoped his eyes weren’t turning gold.

On the upside, at least he now knew for sure she was a werewolf. He could smell it in her pheromones. That was probably why they hit it off so well. Well, there was another reason, but he wasn’t about to go there—even if a little wolf voice in the back of his head whispered maybe he should.

Lana was telling him about an awesome pizza place that wasn’t too far away, wondering if he’d be interested in checking it out, but instead of answering her, he went in a completely different direction.

“It’s so cool finding another of our kind here,” he said. “I totally didn’t expect it.”

She didn’t seem to mind that he’d changed the subject, but she looked a bit confused. “Another of our kind? Are you a pescatarian, too?”

Max chuckled. That body and those looks combined with a wicked sense of humor? It was like she was made for him. A werewolf who didn’t eat meat? Now, that was epically funny.

Unless it was true, in which case it was a little strange.

Before he could say anything, Lana leaned over to look at something behind him, her lips curving into a smile. Max turned to see who she was looking at and was a little surprised to find Deputy Chief Hal Mason. The deputy chief was in charge of the police department’s specialized Tactical Division, which included the mounted police, canine unit, helicopter support, EOD, and SWAT. As a high-ranking officer in the department, Mason had to attend every award ceremony, but this time he’d been recognized for his commitment to developing his entire division, especially SWAT.

“Hey, Dad.” Lana stepped around Max to give Mason a hug. “I was looking for you and Mom earlier, but you were deep in conversation with some people and I didn’t want to interrupt.”

Max picked his jaw up from the floor and shoved it back into place. Lana was the deputy chief’s daughter?

About the Author: Paige Tyler is the USA Today bestselling author of sexy, romantic fiction. She and her very own military hero (also known as her husband) live on the beautiful Florida coast with their adorable fur baby (also known as their dog). Paige graduated with a degree in education, but decided to pursue her passion and write books about hunky alpha males and the kickbutt heroines who fall in love with them.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Kobo, Google, or IndieBound.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Top Five Vacation Spots in Colorado by Julia Talbot – Guest Blog

Hey, y’all!

I’m here to give you a first peek to Fangs and Catnip, my very first Dreamspun Beyond from Dreamsinner Press.

Carter is the new manager at the Dead and Breakfast Inn, and he falls for vampire silent partner Fallon, who is sure they don’t need a were-cougar as a manager…

I love the mountains in Colorado, where Dead and Breakfast is set, so I wanted to talk about my top vacation spots there! Here are my top 5.

5. Boulder. Foodies abound, so there’s tons of good food. The shopping is eclectic and amazing, and I love the nature trails and outdoor activities. There’s a comfortable feel to this city, one that makes it easy to kick back and wander.

4. Ouray They call Ouray the Switzerland of the USA, and it’s an amazing high altitude town. A hot spings pool, the Jeep capitol of the US, and goony golf carved right out of the mountain. You can’t lose, and the last time I was there, a herd of deer wandered across the parking lot at the hotel…

3. Estes Park. High above the rest of the state, Estes is the gateway to Rocky Mountain national park. Herds of elk can end up on main street, and there are great shops and restaurants, as well as the haunted Stanley Hotel. My advice is to rent a cabin and hang out for a week or more.

2. Durango. This town nestled just above New Mexico is my go to in Colorado now that I live between Albuquerque and Santa Fe. I love the narrow gauge railroad that leaved there, the Sizzling Siam restaurant, with its two seats and standing counter. I adore the Purgatory ski mountain and the river running right through town. Best, it’s 3 hours away.

1. Glenwood Springs. Oh, y’all. I can’t rave about Glenwood enough. Skiing, rafting, snowmobiling, spas, vapor caves, hot springs, fairy caves, fancy old hotels, bizarre off the grid businesses and people, Hanging Lake, and the amazing Glenwood canyon… It has everything. You should go.

I hope y’all will check out the Dead and Breakfast!

XXOO

Julia

A Dead and Breakfast Novel

A romance worth fighting for—tooth and claw.

Solitary vampire Fallon Underwood gets all the social interaction he needs being the silent partner at the Dead and Breakfast B and B high in the Colorado mountains. Change is hard for Fallon, so when his business partner, Tanner, suggests hiring a new manager for the inn, he’s adamant that they don’t need help, especially not in the form of bouncy werecat Carter Hughes.

Carter is a happy-go-lucky kitty, and he loves the hospitality industry, so the D and B ought to be a great place for him. He falls for Fallon as soon as he picks up one of Fallon’s novels, and begins to woo the vamp with gifts. When Fallon finally succumbs to Carter’s feline charms, the results are unexpected, to say the least. Their mating will have irreversible consequences—for their bodies and their hearts.

About the Author: Stories that leave a mark. Julia Talbot loves romance across all the genders and genres, and loves to write about people working to see past the skin they’re in to love what lies beneath. Julia Talbot lives in the great mountain and high desert Southwest, where there is hot and cold running rodeo, cowboys, and everything from meat and potatoes to the best Tex-Mex. A full time author, Julia has been published by Dreamspinner and Changeling Press among many others. She believes that everyone deserves a happy ending, so she writes about love without limits, where boys love boys, girls love girls, and boys and girls get together to get wild, especially when her crazy paranormal characters are involved. She also writes BDSM and erotic romance as Minerva Howe. Find Julia at @juliatalbot on Twitter, or at www.juliatalbot.com “The mountains are calling, and I must go”

Website | Twitter | Facebook

Buy the book at Dreamspinner Press.

The Duke Knows Best by Jane Ashford

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Jane Ashford who is celebrating the upcoming release of The Duke Knows Best, the 5th book in her The Duke’s Sons series.

Lord Randolph Gresham has an up and coming career in the Church, and has come to London for the season to find a wife. A feisty and dangerously attractive young woman who insists she’d never marry a clergyman keeps distracting him. This shouldn’t be a problem—they’ll just avoid each other. When they’re forced to sing together, though, the duet is a deeply sensual experience. Verity Sinclair, daughter of the Dean of Chester Cathedral, hasn’t changed her mind about the future. But Randolph proves hard to resist, and when they finally give in to their passion, there’s only one option left: marriage.

About the Author: Jane Ashford discovered Georgette Heyer in junior high school and was entranced by the glittering world and witty language of Regency England. That delight was part of what led her to study English literature and travel widely in Britain and Europe. She has lived in New York, Boston and LA. Today, she is somewhat nomadic.

Jane has written historical and contemporary romances. Her books have been published in England, Spain, France, Italy, Sweden, Slovakia, Denmark, Russia, and Latvia, Croatia and Slovenia as well as the U.S. She has been nominated for a Career Achievement Award by RT Book Reviews.

Website | Facebook | Newsletter Sign Up | Goodreads

Buy the book at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.