Friday, April 15, 2016

Virtual Tour w/Giveaway: You're Still The One by Darcy Burke


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BlueFire Download of ONLY IN MY DREAMS and YOURS TO HOLD


YOU'RE STILL THE ONE
Ribbon Ridge #6
Darcy Burke
Releasing on April 5th, 2016.
Avon Impulse


USA Today bestseller Darcy Burke concludes her Archer family saga with a second chance at first love…

Everyone thought college sweethearts Bex Holmgren and Hayden Archer were headed for the altar… until a tragic accident sent young Bex running from a future she wasn’t ready to claim. But when she’s offered her dream job at Archer Brewing, Bex can’t pass up the chance to reconnect with the big, crazy family that once welcomed her with open arms—and the one man she’s never stopped loving.

When he returns home after a year in France, Hayden is less than thrilled to find his ex-girlfriend working for his family’s company. He’s finally moved on, and being around her rekindles long-buried feelings he’d rather ignore. But Bex isn’t the same girl he knew—she’s more mature, more beautiful, more tempting than ever—and he can’t resist the pull of the intense passion he’s only ever shared with her.

Have five years changed them enough, or are they doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past? The only thing Bex knows for sure is that for her, Hayden is still the one.


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Ribbon Ridge Who’s Who

Whether you’re new to Ribbon Ridge (welcome!) or you’re all caught up with the Archers, you may find yourself trying to track all of the characters in the novels. That will happen when you’re dealing with a family with seven kids! Let me introduce you to the kids first. There are sextuplets, all named with two syllables and four letters. In birth order, they are: Liam, Alex (they are identical twins), Kyle, Tori, Evan, and Sara. The non-sextuplet, also known as the “oops” kid since he was conceived rather surprisingly after years of infertility (extensive fertility treatments resulted in the multiple birth), is Hayden. Because multiple births are tricky and always happen early, half of them were born with a disability or special need of some kind. Alex’s lungs suffered from a lack of development, and he struggled with issues surrounding that his whole life. He also battled bipolar disorder, which he kept from most of the family. He committed suicide at the beginning of the first book, ONLY IN MY DREAMS. If you’d like to meet Alex, pick up the prequel novella, WHERE THE HEART IS.

The other two siblings who were born with challenges are Sara, who has sensory processing disorder, and Evan, who has Asperger syndrome, or what is now just called Level 1 Autism Spectrum Disorder. Kyle has an addiction (read YOURS TO HOLD to find out more!), Tori likes to manage everyone and jockeys for the “leadership” position with Liam, and Liam is the alpha dog—or so he likes to think. All of them left Ribbon Ridge to find their place, with the exception of Hayden. As the youngest, he was left at home, along with Alex, and felt the need to support his ailing brother as well as support the family business. But, of course, after Alex dies, everything changes.

Rounding out the Archer family are their parents—Rob and Emily. They met in college and had an interesting love affair. You can read about it in WHEN LOVE HAPPENS. They have their ups and downs during the series, and they are by no means perfect parents. They do, however, love their children unconditionally and want what’s best for them. Rob has a younger brother who left Ribbon Ridge, and he has three kids. You’ll meet one of them in YOU’RE STILL THE ONE and all of them in future Ribbon Ridge novels!

Other folks who pop up include the Westcott brothers. You meet the eldest, Dylan, in ONLY IN MY DREAMS since he’s the hero. He has three younger half-brothers: Cameron, Luke, and Jamie. You spend some time with Cameron in book one and then with all three in YOU’RE STILL THE ONE. If you think you’ll be reading about them very soon, you’d be right!

Another recurring character is George Wilson, the bartender at the Archer’s flagship pub in Ribbon Ridge, The Arch and Vine. George makes an appearance in several books and he’s a fun fatherly-type to the Archer kids. He’s never been married, and I’m pretty sure there’s a story there!

Whew! That’s a lot of people, and there are plenty more—some of whom you’ll meet again. Is there anyone you’re looking forward to seeing?



“Your family is tough.”
He tipped his head up to look at her. “Tough?”
“It’s just . . . big. Complicated. Competitive.”
His brow furrowed. “Is that how you see us?”
“That’s how I see them. How do you see them?”
He smiled. “Complicated. Competitive.” He looked at her with appreciation in his gaze, which wasn’t helping her campaign to shelve her feelings for him. “It feels off being back now. I’ve always been the one to be here—you know that.”
He’d felt it was his responsibility to stay. Except maybe responsibility wasn’t what he’d felt. Maybe it was the desire to be the one who was necessary. Not martyrdom—nothing that self-serving—but a true need to feel . . . needed. Why had she never seen that before?
“I did know that, but I don’t think I really understood it until now. I shouldn’t have asked you to leave.”

He sat up and pivoted the stool so he was facing her. His knee brushed hers as he turned, and she felt the connection everywhere. He, on the other hand, didn’t seem to notice.
“Whoa,” he said. “This is a total one-eighty. I’m not sure I can wrap my head around this.” There were lines of humor around his eyes, so she knew he was at least half-joking.
“I know, right?” She brought the whiskey to her lips and drank.
“What happened?” he asked softly, his gaze intense. “Why do you say that now?”
Oh, this was dangerous territory. This intimate conversation, the dimness of the room, the familiarity and its pull—at least for her. “You seem out of sorts now, like you maybe can’t find your place, whereas before you knew what it was. You were Hayden the Dependable, the one everyone counted on.” 
His stare pierced her. There was a bit of admiration there. She fidgeted with her glass, unsure where this was going.
“You get it. No one gets it.”
She wasn’t sure that was true, but maybe it was just that he hadn’t talked to them about it. And maybe he didn’t want to. Maybe his place wasn’t here. “I get it now,” she said, smiling. “But I didn’t before. And I’m sorry.”
“You said you shouldn’t have asked me to leave. Do you . . . do you regret leaving?”
Damn, that was the worst question ever. Yes and no. “Until I’d come back here, I would’ve said no. Now . . . I’m not sure. It’s hard to regret things, isn’t it? Because we are who we are today because of the choices we made. And I like who I am.” For the most part.
He hadn’t broken eye contact with her the entire time she’d spoken, and she wondered if he felt this connection, this bone-deep longing that she’d truly never experienced before. Then he leaned in, and she did the same. Did he realize how close they were? If they both leaned just a bit more, their lips would touch.
“Maybe that’s it.” His voice was soft, sexy, but dark, too. “Maybe I don’t like who I am.”




Darcy Burke is the USA Today bestselling author of hot, action-packed historical and sexy, emotional contemporary romance. Darcy wrote her first book at age 11, a happily-ever-after about a swan addicted to magic and the female swan who loved him, with exceedingly poor illustrations.

A native Oregonian, Darcy lives on the edge of wine country with her guitar-strumming husband, their two hilarious kids-who each seem to have inherited the writing gene in some form-and two Bengal cats. In her "spare" time Darcy is a serial volunteer enrolled in a 12-step program where one learns to say "no," but she keeps having to start over. Her happy places are Disneyland and Labor Day weekend at the Gorge.

Blog Tour w/Giveaway: Scorpio's KIss by MC Domovitch

Scorpios Kiss

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ScorpiosKissFINALAmazon_1

Book Title: Scorpio's Kiss 
Author: M C Domovitch 
Genre: Romance 
Release Date: January 2016 
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions

Goodreads

book blurb
Scorpio's Kiss is a spell-binding tale of love, ambition and greed that will keep the reader turning the pages until its surprise ending. Set in New York and Paris amid the glamorous and competitive worlds of art and real estate, Scorpio's Kiss takes the reader from the late 1940s to the 1960s through the tumultuous lives of its heroes.

There is Alex Ivanov, the son of a Russian immigrant and part-time prostitute. He yearns to escape his sordid life and achieve fame and fortune. His dreams of becoming a world-class builder are met with countless obstacles, yet he perseveres in the hope of someday receiving the recognition he craves.

Half a world away, Brigitte Dartois is an abused teenager who runs into the arms of a benefactor with an agenda all his own. When she finds out that her boss has an ulterior motive, she flees again, determined to earn her living through her art. This career brings her fame, but also the unwanted attention of her early abuser.

Domovitch’s novel is a compelling tale, filled with finely etched characters and a superb understanding of the power of ambition. Scorpio's Kiss promises to resonate with all who once had a dream.

excerpt
1948

The days were getting shorter. The boy looked up in surprise at the sky, which had suddenly grown dark. He pulled his worn sweater tight against the October chill, blew warm breath into his cupped hands and hurried on. The newspaper bag strung across his shoulders was almost empty. He no longer had to put it down at every street corner to massage his sore back. He was almost home.

Alexander Ivanov lived at the end of the world. To the twelve-year-old, that was exactly what Brooklyn was; the end of the world. Maybe because the one time he had been to the city, what he called Manhattan, it had taken forever on the subway.

Alex hated living in Brooklyn, and never more so than when his mother talked about her youth in Leningrad with tears running down her face. She would revert to Russian, which he didn’t understand, but the passion in her eyes spoke more volubly of the beauty of her old country than words couldconvey.

Every day on his way back from school, weighed down by the load of newspapers, he passed the same dusty old stores, their signs barely legible from the peeling paint; the same ratty tenement buildings in which people suffocated in the summer and shivered in the winter; the same old women in their ritual wigs and shapeless dresses, vacant and blank expressions of hopelessness etched on their faces. Hopeless, that was how he sometimes felt; and then he would remember Manhattan and feel better. If there was one thing Alex wished for, it was to live in Manhattan. He yearned for Manhattan the way his mother pined for her old country.

Alex walked along Main Street, where pickles marinated in barrels, salamis swung from hooks, and sausages dried in their cotton bags. He was oblivious to the sights and smells around him. One by one, he took the papers from his bag, and with a quick, experienced motion, he threw them. His aim was almost perfect.

Tomorrow was collection day. He would stop at each house along his route and wait while his clients went to get their money. After making change, he would thank each one of them politely even though most never bothered to leave him a tip. His work would take him more than twice as long as on normal delivery days. Still, he looked forward to it. Collection day was when he could go home, count out his profits and decide how much of the money he could save. This week, if all went well, he might reach the fifty-dollar mark in his bank account. Fifty dollars! It was a fortune.

He reached into his bag, pulled out the last newspaper and aimed it with unerring precision at the Kodesky’s front porch. At that moment the door swung open and old man Kodesky stepped out. The paper flew through the air like a projectile and landed with a thud in the startled man’s well-padded stomach.

“Hey, you no-good little piece of shit!” He waved his fist. “What the fuck do you think you’re doing?” Alex did not hear a word. He was a million miles away, dreaming of the day he would escape the hell of living at the end of the world.

Even now, two years later, he could still remember every detail of his trip to Manhattan. After a long subway ride, he’d emerged in the city surrounded by skyscrapers so tall, he could only see the top by looking up high and leaning back. People on the street rushed about in the lightly falling snow, pushing and jostling each other, their arms full of brightly wrapped packages. It was one week before Christmas and there was a dizzying feeling of joy in the air. Alex had been almost drunk from the excitement. This must be what Leningrad was like.

Deep in his dreams of unlimited delights, he walked home. Three blocks later, Alex climbed the stairs to the dingy one-bedroom apartment where he and his mother lived.

Before he was born, his mother had tried to make the apartment look warm and inviting. She hung pretty paper on the walls and crisp curtains over the windows. The furniture was inexpensive but attractive and functional. Whatever nesting instinct had once inspired Marlena Ivanov’s efforts had long disappeared. For the past twelve years she had done nothing more to improve her home. Indeed, she had not done even the most basic of repairs. Over time, the wallpaper had become worn and faded. The curtains lost their freshness and the once attractive furniture became old and shabby. The sour stench of poverty clung to the apartment like old dirt.

Alex closed the door behind him and dropped his canvas bag on the floor. He sniffed the air and wrinkled his nose. From the kitchen came the smell of boiled cabbage.

“Is dat you Alexander? Vere ver you? Is nearly six o’clock and dinner is been ready for hour,” his mother’s heavily accented voice called out from the bathroom. “I getting ready to go out. You villave to eat alone.”

Through the thin door came the sound of the toilet flushing. A moment later Marlena appeared wearing a tight pink sweater set and a black satin skirt. Her dark hair was freshly coifed, the marks of the bobby pins still imprinted between each wave. Her mouth was painted crimson in the shape Joan Crawford had made popular a decade earlier. From ten feet away the smell of vodka on her breath was overpowering.

“Will you be coming home by yourself?” asked the boy suspiciously.

“Vat you vant me to do?” She picked up her purse abruptly and threw in her lipstick. “You vant to eat. I not do dis for me. A boy need food to grow big, strong. Someday you understand.” A moment later, she was gone.

Marlena Ivanov was a bitter woman. She made no secret of the fact that raising a boy by herself was a heavy cross to carry, one she deeply resented. Alex sometimes thought his mother hated him almost as much as she did his father. He had never seen his father. He knew, only because his mother repeatedly told him, that Pavel Ivanov had been a gambler and a womanizer. Whatever wages the man had earned, he just as quickly spent on those two vices. The day Alex was born was the day Pavel Ivanov decided that married life was not for him. He disappeared, leaving his seventeen-year-old wife to deal with the struggles of working and raising a son by herself.

After a dinner of cabbage soup, Alex turned off the lights and climbed under his blankets. In the dark, he could clearly see his mother’s empty bed a few feet from his own. He turned his back to it and curled up.

Hours later, the muffled sound of laughter woke him up. The bedroom door swung open and the light turned on.

“Turn dat off. You vake up boy,” his mother ordered in a shrill whisper. The light flicked off. “Das better. I like dark.” She laughed. “Now, come to Marlena.” Clothes rustled. From his cot, in the corner of the room, Alex guessed every gesture, every movement. Old springs creaked. The sounds were loud, magnified by the stillness of the night.

Alex covered his ears. By trying hard, maybe he could keep the noises from reaching him. It was too late. The guilty stirring in his loins had already begun. His mind swirled in a mix of emotions too strong for him to understand. Maybe if he thought of something else. Someday I’ll drive in from the city in a brand new Cadillac. I’ll show them all…

The next morning, Marlena kissed the man goodbye and turned triumphantly to Alex. “See dis?” She pulled out a ten-dollar bill from between her breasts. “Dis can buy food for whole week.”

Alex looked away, embarrassed and ashamed, and returned to the picture he was drawing on the back of his spelling book.
meet the author

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M C Domovitch is the author of nine books, four of which were published under the pen name Carol Ann Martin. Another four were published under Monique Domovitch. Now that she is focusing her energies writing Sweeping Romances and Romantic Suspense she had chosen to identify her new genres by using her initials rather than her surname. She is now working on another Sweeping Romance in the style of Scorpio's Kiss, this one, tentatively titled Under a Libra Sky.

Monique has enjoyed other successful careers before becoming a writer. She was one of Canada's top models. "That was a lifetime ago," she says with a laugh. She has also hosted her own television show, Her Money, a program about finance and investing geared for women. It was only when she and her husband moved across the country after the end of her television career that she decided to pursue her true passion, writing. At a writer's conference in San Diego, she attended a workshop where her novel attracted the attention of a publisher and an agent. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Domovitch lives with her physician husband and their dogs, and they divide their time between homes in Victoria BC, Toronto Ontario and Key Largo Florida.

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Release Blitz w/Giveaway: Rustic Moment by Nic Starr

Title: Rustic Moment
Series: Rustic #3
Author: Nic Starr
Genre: M/M Romance
Release Date: April 15, 2016
Betrayal, heartbreak, and financial ruin are only the beginning. The last few months have been tough on Grant Parnell. He discovered his boyfriend was having an affair and it’s taken its toll, both emotionally and financially. With his business facing ruin, Grant could lose everything.
Dave Monroe is excited to start a new phase of his life. He’s following his dream and pursuing an exciting career opportunity. When Grant visits his friends in the country and finds out Dave might be moving to Melbourne, he offers him a place to stay. For Dave, life’s looking good.
Dave had only met Grant a couple of times before moving in with him, but the simmering sexual attraction is undeniable. As he settles into Grant’s home, deeper feelings develop. It’s hard not to fall for Grant’s gorgeous exterior, but it’s the strong man underneath who captures Dave’s heart.
Grant always craved success. His business and his home are testament to just how far he’s come, proving his family wrong and making something of himself—or he had. Now everything is falling apart. As Grant’s world spirals out of control, Dave is the one sure thing in his life.
But if they are to have any chance at happiness, Dave will need to teach Grant what’s really important.
 
“I said no.”

Grant’s voice was loud enough to travel down the hall. Dave immediately tensed at the tone. He couldn’t tell if Grant was angry or just being firm, but his words were clear. “This is the last time I want to have this conversation. You aren’t welcome here anymore.”

“I just want to know what you said to Douglas.” The answering voice was menacing, and Dave’s hackles rose.

Who on earth is that?

Dave placed the milk bottle on the benchtop and edged closer to the doorway. Grant could no doubt take care of himself, but Dave wanted to be close at hand. Just in case.

In case of what?

It didn’t matter what, it only mattered that Dave make sure Grant was okay, and the stranger’s voice didn’t sound anywhere near okay.

“What are you talking about? I haven’t spoken to Doug in weeks. In fact, if you know how to contact him, maybe you can tell him to call, and that I need to speak to him and sort out some crap.”

“I know you’ve said something. He told me you were trying to shaft him and get rid of him from the business. Then he went overseas, and now he’s come back and doesn’t want to see me.”

“So he’s back, then?”

“Don’t pretend you don’t already know.”

“I’m not pretending anything. How many times do I have to tell you I haven’t seen or spoken to Doug? We haven’t exchanged so much as an email. Okay, well, maybe that’s not quite true. I’ve sent him emails and letters, but he hasn’t replied. If he doesn’t want to see you, John, that’s between you and him. It has nothing to do with me. I’ve told you before—you’re welcome to each other.”

“Don’t you dare—”

“Get your hands off me.”

Dave didn’t wait to hear any more. Before he was even conscious of moving, he was striding down the hallway, and was bloody glad he’d done it. Grant was shoved up against the wall. A guy—John, the ex-boyfriend?—gripped him by the upper arms and yelled in his face.

“Hold it right there. Get your fucking hands off him,” Dave growled.

Shocked eyes met his as John looked his way and instinctively dropped his hands. “I… ah….”

“Step away. Now.”

John hesitated for a moment, looking between Grant and Dave.

Dave didn’t take his eyes off John, watching the man’s every move. “I said now.”
Nic Starr lives in Australia where she tries to squeeze as much into her busy life as possible. Balancing the demands of a corporate career with raising a family and writing can be challenging but she wouldn't give it up for the world.

Always a reader, the lure of m/m romance was strong and she devoured hundreds of wonderful m/m romance books before eventually realising she had some stories of her own that needed to be told!

When not writing or reading, she loves to spend time with her family-an understanding husband and two beautiful daughters, and is often found indulging in her love of cooking and planning her dream home in the country.

You can find Nic on Facebook, Twitter and her blog. She'd love it if you stopped by to say hi.
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