Review: Cherish Hard by Nalini Singh


Nalini Singh writing contemporary romance??? THIS IS A GIMME FOR ME! I was so excited to see Cherish Hard pop up on Netgalley because OMG it’s Nalini Singh and it’s a continuation, character wise, of her book Rock Hard (one of my favorite books by Nalini).

Cherish Hard is basically the meet-cute story of Sailor and Ísa, who readers meet already married in Rock Hard. This is their love story and it is a good one. Sailor sees Ísa at a party when he was in high school, just as she was breaking up with her jerk of a boyfriend. He never forgot her so when an unknown redhead approaches him in the parking lot of a school and kisses him, hard, well, he is intrigued. When he learns who the mystery woman is, he realizes that his long held crush hasn’t quite gone away. Sailor is ready to get to know Ísa NOW but Ísa isn’t so sure. She wants to settle down and marry and it seems like Sailor is just starting his business. And it’s true, Sailor has big plans for his garden business. But that doesn’t mean they can’t try, right?

A Nalini Singh love story always makes me happy. Don’t worry if you haven’t read Rock Hard yet. You’ll get caught up instantly in Ísa and Sailor’s love story. It’s not easy for either of them. Ísa is facing family pressure from her mother to be part of their family business, a chain of successful crafting stores. Sailor has always wanted to prove himself better than his father, a man who disappointed the entire family when he up and left Sailor’s mom, taking all her savings in the process. Sailor wants to do anything to show her and the world that he is a better man. His ambition sometimes gets in the way of his romantic interests unfortunately.

I love the romance that blooms between Sailor and Ísa. It is passionate and raw and endearing. From the first moment they officially meet in the story, I was hooked. I know I tend to rave about Nalini Singh books (I am definitely a Nalini stan) but truly, this is a heart-sweeping love story. A top-notch contemporary romance featuring great friendships (Ísa and her longtime best friend, Nayna, are lovely women with a warm and humorous friendship that has shined through thick and thin), intriguing family politics for both Ísa and Sailor, and a growing connection that surpasses anything either has ever felt before.

Cherish Hard just has that special something that romance readers look for. It’s a mind, heart, and text connection that is palpable and well-crafted. Nalini Singh does it again in this book. I adore her Psy/Changeling stories but I must admit, I loved a book set in the contemporary present, with all the problems that men and women are facing when trying to find that special someone. Ísa and Sailor complement each other nicely and I’m so glad I can revisit them in Rock Hard.

Cherish Hard is available now. You don’t want to miss out!


New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh kicks off her new Hard Play contemporary romance series with a sizzling story that’ll leave you smiling…


Cherish Hard is NOW LIVE
Meet Sailor & Isa TODAY!

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A Hard Play Novel by Nalini Singh


New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh kicks off her new Hard Play contemporary romance series with a sizzling story that’ll leave you smiling…

Sailor Bishop has only one goal for his future – to create a successful landscaping business. No distractions allowed. Then he comes face-to-face and lips-to-lips with a woman who blushes like an innocent… and kisses like pure sin.

Ísa Rain craves a man who will cherish her, aches to create a loving family of her own. Trading steamy kisses with a hot gardener in a parking lot? Not the way to true love. Then a deal with the devil (aka her CEO-mother) makes Ísa a corporate VP for the summer. Her main task? Working closely with a certain hot gardener.

And Sailor Bishop has wickedness on his mind.

As Ísa starts to fall for a man who makes her want to throttle and pounce on him at the same time, she knows she has to choose – play it safe and steady, or risk all her dreams and hope Sailor doesn’t destroy her heart.

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Being a devil woman, she reminded herself. Having fun for a change. Not being a grandma at twenty-eight years of age.

Still, she couldn’t stop second-guessing herself as Sailor led her out of the house through a side entrance that opened out into a small, manicured garden. “I’ll have to take off my heels,” she whispered when she saw the pebbled path snaking through the garden.

“Want a piggyback ride?” A playful grin. “I promise not to molest your thighs.”

Goose bumps broke out over Ísa’s skin, her nipples tight. Reckless as she was feeling tonight, she might just have taken him up on his offer if she hadn’t been worried her damn dress would split in two. “Maybe when we’re naked,” she said instead, Devil Ísa in full flower.

Groaning, he doubled over as if she’d punched him.

Her lips twitching despite the melting sexual heat liquefying her bones, she leaned down to slip off her heels.

Sailor waited, his hand firm around hers, until she was done. Taking the heels from her, he carried them in his other hand as Ísa padded beside him on the grass that lay on this side of the pebbled path. The path ended at a weathered wooden gate, which, when opened, put them at the top of a narrow walkway that led down onto a beach Ísa couldn’t yet see but could hear.

Her heart crashed in time with the waves as they made their way down to the beach while the mansion behind them pulsed with light and music. But she didn’t turn and run away, she didn’t stop and talk herself out of it, she didn’t attempt to be a sensible adult. She followed a gorgeous, blue-eyed man down a dirt pathway to an effectively private beach.

The sand that had been tracked onto the path was gritty under her feet, the air coming off the sea cool but not cold.

“The water’s going to be icy, isn’t it?” she whispered to his broad back.

“Don’t worry, spitfire. I’ll keep you warm,” was the deep-voiced response. “Stop here.” Jumping down to the beach, he reached up to grab her by the waist, swinging her down as if she were a featherweight.

Something fluffy and mushy came to life inside Ísa. “Here?”

Shaking his head, he said, “Raj told me there’s like a little cove area—not a proper cove, but caused by— There.”

Ísa saw it at once. A huge tree had fallen into the water at some point and smashed up against some rocks where it appeared to be stuck. Between the jutting rocks on either side and the fallen trunk was a naturally created pool. The water within it was pretty calm, and it looked as if they could get to it by clambering over some rocks that didn’t appear too sharp or slippery.

Of course, she’d be walking over those rocks naked.

Ísa looked up at the moon. Imagined it shining on the stark white of her body. Gulped. “Will you close your eyes while I go in the water?” Even Devil Ísa wasn’t up for blinding him with her glow-in-the-dark form.

A glance back. “What’re you going to bribe me with?”

Ísa scowled. “Not pushing you into the water right now.” It was a toothless threat given his muscles and her lack of them.

Rubbing his jaw, he said, “Three tongue kisses. That’s my price, and I’m not budging.”

Ísa wanted to pounce on him all over again. “Two,” she countered.

“Nuh-uh. Three. Or I’m keeping both eyes wide open.” Leaning in, he pressed his nose to hers. “I really want to keep my eyes wide open.”

And Ísa really wanted to kiss him and run her hands all over that sculpted chest. “Three,” she whispered.

Copyright © 2017 by Nalini Singh

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Haven’t read this series yet? Start the Rock Kiss Series NOW!

Rock Addiction (Book One) Rock Kiss Series

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Rock Courtship (Book 1.5) A Rock Kiss Novel:

  • Rock Redemption (Book Three) Rock Kiss Series

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Rock Wedding (Book Four) Rock Kiss Series

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nalini SinghNalini Singh is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Psy-Changeling, Guild Hunter, and Rock Kiss series. She lives and works in beautiful New Zealand, and is passionate about writing.

If you’d like to explore her other books, you can find lots of excerpts and free short stories on her website. Slave to Sensation is the first book in the Psy-Changeling series, while Angels’ Blood is the first book in the Guild Hunter series. The Rock Kiss books are all stand alone and can be read in any order.

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Review: Once Upon a Maiden Lane by Elizabeth Hoyt


Mary Whitsun has been a minor character throughout several of the Maiden Lane books. Finally, it is her turn to find happiness and love.

Mary was an orphan left at the Home for Unfortunate Infants and Foundling Children. She formed a strong bond with Temperance, Lady Caire, while living at the home. Now, she is nursemaid for Temperance’s children. She has a good life, even if, at times, Mary wishes for more.

That “more” finds her one day when she is roaming a bookshop on her day off. She finds a handsome and clearly aristocratic man staring at her. She tries to brush him off but he persists in introducing himself. He believes her to be Lady Joanna, his fiance, until he realizes that Mary looks just like Joanna.

Suddenly, the possibility that Mary is related to the wealth, to privilege, is thrust into her life.

Henry Collins, Viscount Blackwell, has always done as he is told in his family. He is betrothed to Johanna, even though he does not love her. He knows their match is good for the family. But, meeting Mary, the woman he believes he was supposed to be engaged to, but who was kidnapped as a baby, well, Henry is starting to see the world in a different light. Mary challenges his preconceived notions of privilege and wealth, the very world he has taken for granted. And the more time he spends with her, the more he wants to be with her forever.

This is a novella which makes me somewhat sad because honestly, I would have loved a full-length book about Mary and Henry. They really stand out as characters. I absolutely loved Mary, as I knew I would. She is a caring young woman who is trying to be content with her lot in life. She knows she has a good situation, working with the Caires who genuinely care for her. It’s not easy always wanting just a little more though.

Henry is a typical handsome Lord but when he is with Mary, his person shines a little brighter, he is a bit wittier and he finds himself falling hard for her. Meeting Mary actually makes Henry a more interesting character in my eyes because she has a worldview that he would never have had the chance to know.

That being said, I was a bit afraid with how the story started because well, Ms. Hoyt takes on the classic romance trope of the orphan heroine finding out she is suddenly wealthy. I was hoping Ms. Hoyt would challenge this a bit and she does! So, do not fear. There is more to this story than meets the eye, even if the story becomes a tad melodramatic at the end.

That being said, honestly this is just a fun and lovely story. I am so happy Mary found her person, a life for herself and the opportunity for happiness when she least expected it. There aren’t enough servant historical romances (or I’m just not reading enough of them) so I was doubly thrilled Elizabeth Hoyt tackled this.

And the ending… I’m going to go full on cliche here and say, my heart soared for Mary and Henry. Just… it was perfection.

Once Upon a Maiden Lane is available today! If you’ve been following this series, if you’ve grown a soft spot in your heart for Mary Whitsun like I have, well, this novella is a MUST-BUY.


ONCE UPON A MAIDEN LANE by Elizabeth Hoyt (November 14, 2017; Forever Yours Ebook; $1.99; The Maiden Lane Series #12.5)

A stand-alone novella from New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Hoyt!

Miss Mary Whitsun is far too intelligent to fall for the rakish charms of a handsome aristocrat. But when the gentleman in question approaches her in a bookshop, mistaking her for his fiancée, Lady Johanna Albright, the flirtatious encounter only raises more questions. Could Mary, a servant raised in a St Giles orphanage, actually be Lady Joanna’s long-lost twin sister? If so, Mary has been betrothed since birth—to the rakishly handsome artistocrat himself . . .

Henry Collins, Viscount Blackwell, is far too intrigued by Mary to let her go so easily. He’s drawn to her sharp mind, indomitable spirit, and the fiery way in which she dismisses him—ladies simply don’t dismiss Lord Blackwell. But as Mary makes her first hesitant steps into society, she can’t help but wonder if she truly has a place in Henry’s world—or in his heart.


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Elizabeth Hoyt 2017Elizabeth 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.

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Release Blitz: Defiant Queen by Meghan March




The Mount Trilogy continues with

Defiant Queen…

I’m his entertainment. His toy. Payment on a debt.

I tell myself I hate him, but every time he walks into the room, my body betrays me. How can I want him and fear him in the same moment?

They told me he’d mess with my head. Make it go to war with my body.

But I didn’t realize it would be complete anarchy.

I should’ve known better. When Mount’s involved, there are no rules.

I will not surrender. I will not show weakness. I’ll stand my ground and make it out of this bargain with my heart and soul intact.

But he has other plans . . .


Defiant Queen is the second book of the Mount Trilogy. Mount and Keira’s story concludes in Sinful Empire.


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Get ready for the darker and dirtier side of New Orleans with a brand new alpha romance from USA Today bestselling author Meghan March.

New Orleans belongs to me.
You don’t know my name, but I control everything you see—and all the things you don’t.
My reach knows no bounds, and my demands are always met.
I didn’t need to loan money to a failing family distillery, but it amuses me to have them in my debt.
To have her in my debt.
She doesn’t know she caught my attention.
She should’ve been more careful.
I’m going to own her. Consume her. Maybe even keep her.
It’s time to collect what I’m owed.
Keira Kilgore, you’re now the property of Lachlan Mount.

*Ruthless King is book one of the Mount Trilogy*




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Meghan March has been known to wear camo face paint and tromp around in woods wearing mud-covered boots, all while sporting a perfect manicure. She’s also impulsive, easily entertained, and absolutely unapologetic about the fact that she loves to read and write smut. Her past lives include slinging auto parts, selling lingerie, making custom jewelry, and practicing corporate law. Writing books about dirty talking alpha males and the strong, sassy women who bring them to their knees is by far the most fabulous job she’s ever had. She loves hearing from her readers at



Release Blitz: An Ex-For Christmas by Lauren Layne

Named Best Book of the Month by Amazon
Love Unexpectedly
Lauren Layne
Releasing Nov 7, 2017


She’s making a
list—and checking it twice. But is there a nice guy among all her naughty exes?
The New York Times bestselling author of Blurred Lines returns with a
charming friends-to-lovers rom-com.

When a psychic tells spunky, superstitious Kelly Byrne that she’s already met
her true love, she becomes obsessed with the idea of tracking him down before
Christmas. Kelly immediately writes up an “Ex List” and starts contacting old
boyfriends to figure out which one is the one. When her college sweetheart
rolls into town, Kelly convinces herself that they’re meant to be. The trouble
is, sparks are flying with someone she’s never given a chance: her best friend,
Mark.Mark Blakely has watched the guys on Kelly’s list break her heart, and he’s not
looking forward to watching them do it all over again. Mark’s always been there
for her, but the timing’s never worked out for their relationship to be
something more. Now, just as Mark is ready to move on, the sexual tension
between them is suddenly off the charts. With Christmas morning around the
corner, he just hopes Kelly will wake up and realize that everything she wants
has been right in front of her all along.



Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of romantic comedies.
She lives in New York City with her husband.
A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011 to pursue a full-time writing career. She signed with her agent in
2012, and her first book was published in summer of 2013. Since then, she’s
written over two dozen books, hitting the USA TODAYNew York
, iBooks, and Amazon bestseller lists.


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Man Hands by Sarina Bowen and Tonya Eby

Author Sarina Bowen and audiobook voice Tonya Eby have a treat coming readers’ way!



At thirty-four, I’m reeling from a divorce. I don’t want to party or try to move on. I just want to stay home, post a new recipe on my blog: Brynn’s Dips and Balls.

But my friends aren’t having it. Get out there again, they say. It will be fun, they say. I’m still taking a hard pass. 

Free designer cocktails, they say. And that’s a game-changer. 

Too bad my ex shows up with his new arm candy. That’s when I lose my mind. But when my besties dare me to leap on the first single man I see, they don’t expect me to actually go through with it. Literally.


All I need right now is some peace and quiet while my home renovation TV show is on hiatus. But when a curvy woman in a red wrap dress charges me like she’s a gymnast about to mount my high bar, all I can do is brace myself and catch her. What follows is the hottest experience of my adult life. 

I want a repeat, but my flying Cinderella disappears immediately afterward. She doesn’t leave a glass slipper, either—just a pair of panties with chocolate bunnies printed on them. 

But I will find her.

Coming in December!


Review: A Daring Arrangement by Joanna Shupe

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Today, I am super excited to be part of the tour for Joanna Shupe’s new book, A Daring Arrangement. This is a historical romance that I really fell for. I loved the unique setting (well, okay unique for me since I haven’t been reading many historical romances lately) and I really loved the two main characters.

Lady Honora “Nora” Parker has been sent away from England to the wilds of New York City. Her father is determined to make sure that the scandal she found herself in with the man she loved does not spread to America. The romantic artist Nora loves will not due for Nora.

Nora is determined to get back to England and to her true love. She just needs to figure out a way to get her father to notice her antics in New York. Nora comes up with a rather unconventional solution. She proposes a fake engagement to the most awful man in New York, rich financier Julius Hatcher. She is sure that her father, hearing about this engagement and Julius’s wild background, will put a halt to it tout suite and have her sent back to England.

Of course, such a ruse is determined to fail, especially when Nora and Julius start having feelings for each other. Julius has always been determined to never marry (OF COURSE) but he needs Nora’s society connections to figure out who the businessmen are that caused his father to invest badly and then, take his own life. Julius has been looking to avenge his father for years. Nora may be the missing link he needs to find the men he believes led his father astray.

Let me just start by saying I absolutely loved the setting of New York in the Gilded Age. It felt decadent and posh and over the top, which Nora comments on. Joanna Shupe does a fabulous job of bringing that era to life and setting a rather unusual romance amongst the glitter and shine.

I also really enjoyed seeing Nora and Julius fall in love. Any romance reader worth her salt will know that Nora’s beau back in England is not her true love. Instead, it’s the brash American that makes her happy. He doesn’t behave the way she thinks he should for a faux engagement but soon, that doesn’t matter as real feelings grow. This is a sexy romance for sure but also quite sweet. I loved how these two tried to fool themselves into believing they would walk away from such an intimate arrangement unscathed.

I do wish Julius had realized sooner than later that maybe his feelings for Nora were real. Hearing his “I will never marry” rant several times in the book became tiresome. And Nora didn’t want to be a burden on him so she wasn’t going to show her hand first. But she eventually braves her feelings and tell Julius how she feels.

There is much to like in A Daring Arrangement. This is my first Joanna Shupe story but I am eager to read the next book in The Four Hundred series. (Incidentally, I learned on Goodreads that “The Four Hundred” was a term coined by Mrs. Astor that meant the very best families in New York at the turn of the century. Very interesting!

A Daring Arrangement is available now!

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A Daring Arrangement by Joanna Shupe

Set in New York City’s Gilded Age, Joanna Shupe’s Avon debut introduces an English beauty with a wicked scheme to win the man she loves—and the American scoundrel who ruins her best laid plans…

Lady Honora Parker must get engaged as soon as possible, and only a particular type of man will do. Nora seeks a mate so abhorrent, so completely unacceptable, that her father will reject the match—leaving her free to marry the artist she loves. Who then is the most appalling man in Manhattan? The wealthy, devilishly handsome financier, Julius Hatcher, of course….

Julius is intrigued by Nora’s ruse and decides to play along. But to Nora’s horror, Julius transforms himself into the perfect fiancé, charming the very people she hoped he would offend. It seems Julius has a secret plan all his own—one that will solve a dark mystery from his past, and perhaps turn him into the kind of man Nora could truly love.

About the Book

A Daring Arrangement
by Joanna Shupe

Four Hundred #1

Historical Romance

Avon Books

Publication Date
October 31, 2017

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About Joanna Shupe

Joanna Shupe has always loved history, ever since she saw her first Schoolhouse Rock cartoon. While in college, Joanna read every romance she could get her hands on and soon started crafting her own racy historical novels. In 2013, she won Romance Writers of America’s prestigious Golden Heart® Award for Best Historical. She now lives in New Jersey with her two spirited daughters and dashing husband. To connect with Joanna, visit

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Audio Review: The Learning Hours by Sara Ney

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Today, I am reviewing the audibook for Sara Ney’s The Learning Hours. This is one of my favorite books of 2017 and you can read my review for the book here. Today, I am reviewing the audiobook. I don’t listen to a whole lot of audiobooks but sometimes I am in the mood and I decided to give this one a try. I’m glad I did! I thoroughly enjoyed the book in a new and different way.

The Learning Hours is narrated by Josh Goodman and Muffy Newtown. The listening length is 10 hours and 8 minutes. Now, while I love to read romance books, I do not in general listen to romance books. I find it a little weird/embarrassing to hear sex acts on audio. I don’t have a problem reading them obviously! But I wanted to give this a try and I’m glad I did. I think maybe my audio options will be opening up a bit more!

Josh Goodman does a great job as Rhett. You can hear the Southern accent clearly enough in the dialog without it being overwhelming. It fit the Rhett I knew from reading the book. Goodman narrates all the Rhett chapters so you hear his voice as several other male characters too, most notably Gunderson. I thought he does a good job differentiating between the characters. However, he shines as Rhett. The French accent he uses for some of the French phrases seems on point to me.

Muffy Newtown does a fabulous job as Laurel. I really, really liked both her narration in the prose and in the dialog. She really brings Laurel to life. Laurel starts off as a bit of a snob in terms of her attraction to Rhett but as the story goes on, Laurel really opens up to Rhett and in turn, that makes her Newtown’s voice change in her interpretation of Laurel. Newtown also does a great job as Rhett. Definitely a more masculine sounding edge compared to Laurel.

I think the major thing I noticed about this when listening versus reading is that there is a lot of swearing in the book. It doesn’t bother me but it is definitely noticeable. If you’re a listener who prefers a little less swearing in books, this may not be the story for you. But I have to say, if you’ve read this book and had no problem with Ney’s story then, it’s not a huge deal as an audio thing either.

I’ve been a fan of Sara Ney’s stories for quite awhile now but I’m super glad I decided to give this book a listen too. I’d be willing to listen to this narrator combination again! They added a fun spark of humor to the story that really comes out in audio.

The Learning Hours is available now as a book and an audiobook! Give it a try.





He’s not a douchebag; but that doesn’t stop his friends from turning him into one.


So much so that they plastered my ugly mug all over campus, in bold printed letters:

Are you the lucky lady who’s going to break our roommate’s cherry?
Him: socially awkward man with average-sized penis looking for willing sexual partner. You: must have a pulse. He will reciprakate with oral. Text him at: 555-254-5551

The morons can’t even spell. And the texts I’ve been receiving are what wet dreams are made of. But I’m not like these douchebags, no matter how hard they try to turn me into one.


One text stands out from hundreds. One number I can’t bring myself to block. She seems different. Hotter, even in black and white.

However, after seeing her in person, I know she’s not the girl for me. But my friends won’t let up–they just don’t get it. Douchebags or not, there’s one thing they’ll never understand: GIRLS DON’T WANT ME.

Especially her.