Saturday, March 25, 2017

EskieMama & Dragon Lady Reads Saturday Spotlight w/Giveaway: Loved You Always by Natalina Reis

Welcome to EskieMama & Dragon Lady
Saturday Spotlight!

Today we are spotlighting Natalina Reis's
Loved You Always!

Enter below for a chance to win an ecopy of Loved You Always
plus a $10.00 Amazon GC from Natalina Reis

Natalina Reis's 
Love You Always!

The last person Emily Rose expects to reconnect with is Jeremy Peter, her childhood best friend. When Jem walks back into her perfectly settled life, Em puts up her guard. She has no desire to place her heart on the line again.

She’s moved on and is in a serious relationship with someone else. But the universe—and her kooky sister—have other ideas.

Thrust into an unexpected and dangerous adventure together, Em is forced to confront her unresolved feelings for Jem and decide what kind of life she really wants. That is if they both survive.

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Q & A with Natalina Reis about Loved You Always!

Tell us about Loved You Always.
Emily Rose has been in love with her chilldhood best friend, Jem ever since she was in her teens but he never seemed to be interested in anything more than a friendship. One day he vanished without as much as a goodbye, breaking Em’s heart into a million pieces. Fast forward five years. Emily Rose is now in a relationship when Jem suddenly falls into her life again. And this time he claims to have always loved her. Em refuses to allow her ex-best friend to disrupt her organized and secure life but the world has other plans. Between her crazy sister, her white witch friend, and circumstances neither of them could have foreseen they are continuously thrown into each other’s arms and into danger.

What initially inspired you to write Loved You Always?

Like most of my books, Loved You Always started as flash fiction and also inspired in part by a Maroon 5 song and a picture prompt. It sat in my flash fiction files for quite a while but Em and Jem kept “calling” me. Eventually I decided to write their whole story. I’m a sucker for second chance/best friend to lover romances.

Tell us little about the characters in Loved You Always.

Emily Rose (or Em) is the oldest of two sisters and a great lover of order. She plans everything and is always prepared for any eventuality. Her childhood best friend and love interest, Jem is her opposite; chaotic, impulsive. She loves gourmet food, he goes for junk. Because of his impulsivity, Jem gets in trouble not only with Em but also with some very dangerous people.

Em’s sister, Celia is her opposite as well; physically and personality wise. Wild, impulsive but extremely protective of those she loves. And then there is Marcy, the witch. Marcy is what I call a happy accident. I was writing and there she was, one of my favorite characters ever. So much so I’m writing her story.

What was the hardest part of writing this book?

Making the crazy events seem plausible...and there are quite a few. During edits I had to change a couple things that didn’t quite work (legal and criminal justice issues), but all in all this story just flowed easily and smoothly.

What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?

I love the chapter when Em and Jem are taken and held captive because it’s a moment when Emily Rose is faced with her own feelings and has to ask herself what is that she really wantsand/or is willing to give up. Also I love the fact that Em’s penchant to be always prepared is what ultimately saves them. It’s both a funny and emotional chapter.

What are your future project(s)?

I’m actually working on a rom-com for Marcy’s story (by the time this is posted it should be in the hands of a publisher). Like I said before, Marcy turned out to be a favorite character of mine and the readers, and she was screaming to be given her moment in the spotlight. I also have a M/M Paranormal romance (with quite a bit of humor infused throughout) in the hands of a publisher right now.

Is there anything else you would like to tell the readers about this book/series?

If you like a good balance of humor with drama and romance this is the book for you. I had so much fun writing it and I think it shows.

Now an exciting excerpt from Loved You Always!

We slid into the usual booth and ordered two coffees. It was warm in there, and the comforting smell of coffee helped me relax a little. “What do you want, Jeremy Peter? Why won’t you just leave me alone?”
I noticed him wincing at the words. Good, glad I wasn’t the only one hurting. “I just want us to be friends again, Emily Rose. I know I messed up but can’t you forgive me? I never stopped thinking of you while I was gone, and I told you already that I regretted my decision as soon as I landed in Paris. Can’t you just forgive me? I missed you.”
How could I explain to him that it was not that simple? That every time we were together my heart went crazy, and my body heat threatened to burn me alive? How could I tell him that I didn’t want to betray the wonderful man I was involved with, and that the simple act of looking at him made me have less-than-appropriate thoughts? How could I explain to him that I was still so much in love with him?
“I forgive you, Jem. But I’m not the same. We are not the same.” A deep sadness came over me as I uttered those words. It was true. Both of us had changed. It was too late for us. Too much had happened. “We can’t go back. We just can’t.”
Jem lowered his eyes and then raised them to me again. His blue eyes were shiny and intense. “I don’t want to go back. I want to move on. I feel I’ve been stuck on park for the past few years, and I want to put my life on drive again.” He looked almost desperate and, in spite of myself, I itched to comfort him. “I want you back in my life.”
I couldn’t stand it anymore. I jumped to my feet, startling him and inadvertently sending my mug tumbling across the table. With a quick move, he stopped it on its track before falling over the edge, and got up to join me. “I have to go, Jem.” It came out like a plea.
Jem held my hands in his and pulled me closer. I could feel the heat of his body against mine, and I shuddered. What were we doing? I had never been too fond of playing with fire. “Let me go, Jem.”
After a moment of hesitation he relaxed his hold on me and set me free. Feeling a little bereft now that his hands were not binding me anymore, I turned my back and high-tailed out of the café before I could change my mind. My heart beating faster than the flutter of hummingbird wings, tried to jump out of my mouth as I ran to my car in the parking lot.
“Don’t go.” His voice made me stop abruptly as I fumbled with my key fob. Afraid of facing him, I stood as still as a statue feeling the heat of his body as he came near, wrapped his arms around my waist, and rested his chin in the crook of my neck. In spite of the chill in the air I felt warm all over and my head automatically tilted toward his. “I was a fool, Emily Rose, for not realizing it was you all along.”
His breath tingled on my skin and my heart skipped a beat. What was he saying? “Not all those other girls that I fell—or thought I did—head over heels in love with. It was always you. I was too stupid and too blind to see it.” Was he really saying what I thought he was saying? The one thing that I had always wanted to hear? The last thing I wanted him to say right now? “I love you, Emily Rose. Please tell me it’s not too late for us.”
With a gulp, I gathered my wits and forcibly pulled his hands away from my body. “It’s too late, Jem,” I said, turning around to face him. “I’m in a relationship with an amazing guy. A guy that was there for me when you were not. I forgive you, but I’ve moved on. You need to do the same.”
Shell-shocked and trembling, I opened the car door and hurled myself inside. From the corner of my eyes I watched him walk slowly away, shoulders slumped and head tilted forward. Holding on to the steering wheel as if it was a buoy and I was drowning, I allowed the tears I had been holding for years to flow freely down my cheeks. I had done the right thing, sending him away. Then why did it feel so wrong?

Author Bio:

Natalina wrote her first romance in collaboration with her best friend at the age of 13. Since then she has ventured into other genres, but romance is first and foremost in almost everything she writes.

After earning a degree in tourism and foreign languages, she worked as a tourist guide in her native Portugal for a short time before moving to the United States. She lived in three continents and a few islands, and her knack for languages and linguistics led her to a master’s degree in education. She lives in Virginia where she has taught English as a Second Language to elementary school children for more years than she cares to admit.

Natalina doesn’t believe you can have too many books or too much coffee. Art and dance make her happy and she is pretty sure she could survive on lobster and bananas alone. When she is not writing or stressing over lesson plans, she shares her life with her husband and two adult sons.

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Natalina Reis Spotlight Giveaway

Release Blitz w/Giveaway: Defiant Temptation by Lynn Stookes

Title: Defiant Temptation
Series: Harden #3
Author: Lynn Stookes
Genre: Adult, Suspense Romance
Published: March 24, 2017
Harper Andrews hasn't had it easy; abandoned by her mother, dated a scheming boyfriend, and fought for her father’s life against cancer. But she's always prevailed, until now when her world seems to be falling apart.

Tristan Page never loses control; not at the death and reemergence of his sister’s cheating husband, the attack on her life, or even when his company seems to be failing. He's always in command of his actions until one woman threatens to make his world spiral.

Tristan plays on Harper’s last nerve.

Harper tries Tristan’s patience and self-control.

Forced together, in a search for her mother, they battle their attraction for one another. Harper wants him. Tristan wants what he can't have.

Can they defy temptation or will their explosive chemistry set them on a path for self-destruction?

Defiant Temptation Excerpt © Lynn Stookes 2017

 “What ya’ doing man?” Blake questions.
“Working on a case,” I fib. I am working on a case, but he doesn’t need to know it involves waiting outside Harper’s campus while she finishes her classes.
“You sure about that?”
“Yeah,” I pause. What does he know? “Why? What’s up?”
“Oh, you know, nothing,” he chuckles. “Mrs. Nelson stopped by the station today.”
“Yeah? Everything okay with her?”
“She’s perfectly fine,” his voice cracks with a laugh.
Sawyer’s voice booms over the line, “Is that Tristan?”
“Yes.” I hear shuffling in the background.
“You asking about Mrs. Nelson?”
“I’m trying to if you would shut your mouth,” Blake retorts.
“Put it on speaker,” Sawyer demands.
“Such a demanding little shit,” Blake mumbles.
“But you love me anyway.”
“If you didn’t make Dani happy, I’d probably find a dark hole for you.”
I chuckle at the banter between two of my best friends. We’ve always had an easy friendship, even though our lives couldn’t be more different. Blake has a large loving family; I just have Kylie, and now Dani; Sawyer has an alcoholic father he doesn’t see much. Such different upbringings, but we’ve always been close. Even after years away, it was easy to pick up where we left off.
“Hey, Tristan,” Sawyer says into the phone.
“What the hell do you want?” I counter, dreading what they have to say. If it has to do with Mrs. Nelson, it’s nothing good.
“Like I was saying, we had a visit from Mrs. Nelson today,” Blake explains.
“Yeah, so?”
Sawyer chuckles, “She had a story to tell us.” Another laugh bursts from him. “She wanted us to talk to you.”
“About your discretion.” Blake joins in the laughter.
“Discretion?” Confusion runs through me. I have no clue what the old bird is talking about.
“She saw you and Harper pull out of Harry’s place early this morning,” Blake explains.
“Too early for anything pure,” Sawyer snorts. “And your devious ways will get Ms. Innocent Harper into trouble. You better make an honest woman of her.”
That damn old woman. What the hell is she doing? Watching my every move? I remain quiet, hoping they’ll move on, but knowing better.
“Is it true?” Blake asks, trying to contain his amusement.
“Are your devious ways corrupting the innocent Harper?” Sawyer questions.
“No!” I shout, frustration rushing through my veins.
“Banks wasn’t happy when he heard the news from Mrs. Nelson,” Blake comments.
“Apparently, it wasn’t the first time she caught you in a compromising position with Harper,” Sawyer adds.
“Something about you leaving her apartment after an afternoon nookie session.”
They’re ganging up on me. I’m never going to hear the end of this unless I shut them down.
“For the last fucking time, there’s nothing happening with Harper. I got suckered into giving her a ride this morning by Harry,” I say, and to make sure my point is made, I add, “Why would I waste my time with a girl like her? She probably doesn’t even know what to do with a dick. Have you looked at her? She has virgin written all over her face.” The words make my stomach curl, but I need them to drop it. “Besides, she’s not even that cute. I like my woman with curves. Harper is a walking stick. It’d be like fucking a board.”
The small gasp behind me has me instantly regretting my words.
“Gotta go,” I say into the phone and put it in my pocket without waiting for a response. Slowly, I turn.
Harper stands before me, a flaming beauty, seething with anger. Her gorgeous red hair is in a tight ponytail, her eyes brimming with unshed tears. Fuck.
“Harper,” I whisper, reaching for her.
She takes a step back, holding her books close to her chest.
“I…uh…” I stutter, trying to think of an excuse. “I never meant for you to hear that.”
I definitely said the wrong thing because a notebook barrels towards my head. I quickly duck, avoiding it, but not quick enough to dodge a textbook hitting me in the eye.
I reach up, grabbing my eye as the book hits the ground, breaking the seam, pages flying away. She threw books at me. Hard. I look at Harper with my good eye. Her hand is on her chest, shock on her face.
“Are you happy now, Harper?”
“I didn’t…” she begins.
“Didn’t plan on throwing a book at my fucking face?” I growl. “Didn’t plan on acting like a child?”
I take a menacing step towards her, and she quickly retreats, a hand keeping distance between us.
“What, Harper? Don’t tell me you’re scared because you heard something you didn’t want to hear. The truth.”
If I’m going to be a dick, might as well go all in, right?
Harper hisses. “Screw you, Tristan Page! You’re nothing but a chauvinistic dick. I don’t know why I ever wanted you!” She pokes my chest, emphasizing each word. “You’ve made it abundantly clear that you are…you are…”
“Come on, little girl,” I egg on. “Spit it out. What am I?”
Her amber eyes meet mine, dancing like they’re on fire. Fuck if her pissed off isn’t hotter than shit. I seriously screwed up. Her breathing is heavy and ragged, pushing her small but perfect breasts towards me, barely brushing my chest.
“You are,” she pauses, “Nothing. You’re absolutely nothing, Tristan Page.”
She tries to walk away, but I pull her arm, forcing her between me and the truck.
“Nothing?” I question, her words hitting too close to home. “Really?”
Her breath hitches, arousal dancing in her eyes. Before I can stop myself, my mouth is on hers, brutally taking what I want. I nip at her lips, begging her to let me in. I move my hand from her hip, tracing her skin until I brush the swell of her breast. She gasps, allowing me the entrance I crave. I sweep in, devouring her sweet taste, knowing I could easily get addicted.
Harper whimpers when I push her against the hood. My body is so rigid that I literally ache. My erection rubs against her stomach, and I lift her, wanting our bodies to match up. Her leg wraps around my waist. I rock into her, but distant whistles and cat calls filter through my lust induced haze.
Harper must hear them, too, because she pulls back, breaking the best fucking kiss of my life. Avoiding her eyes, I look around at an audience. People even have their fucking phones out, taking pictures and videos.

Lynn Stookes was born and raised in the amazing state of Texas, where she currently resides with her husband of five years. They have one rambunctious four year old son and three furry children, who create the chaos she couldn’t live without.

One day, Lynn took her passion (maybe obsession is more apt) for romance books and mystery shows and wrote her first romantic suspense novel, Fatal Obsession, Book 1 in the Harden Series.

When Lynn isn’t writing or working her day job, you can find her reading on her Kindle, spending time with her family and friends, or playing on Facebook. She loves running, coffee, and country music in no particular order.
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Release Day Blitz w/Giveaway: Mended Hearts by M.E. Gordon

release day blitz

Book Title: Mended Hearts (Torn Hearts, #2) 
Author: M.E. Gordon 
Genre: Contemporary/NewAdult 
Release Date: March 25, 2017 
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions

Goodreads Button with Shadow

book blurb


My heart had just been splintered by the man I thought I was in love with. Betrayed by one mislead by the other. My twisted, triangle of a nightmare was over, it should be a walk in the park now… right?

That's what I thought when the clock struck twelve. I was in the arms of the man I knew I should be with and I was ready for a new year, a new me, and a new love. But this wasn't the fairy tale I thought it was going to be. I'd stepped into a completely new field and it wasn't full of daisies. It was a field of landmines, full of secrets, lies, and more heart break. Is any of this worth saving? Was he worth saving? I loved him, but did he really ever love me, or just the thought of me? Would we just self-destruct and crumble, would he let me in to see the good along with the bad, or would I fall back into old habits.


I love her. That's never going to stop and I don't want it to. I'll make her see…

meet the author

M.E. Gordon, was born and raised in Maryland, where she still resides with her husband. She is a stay at home mom to four children, three boys and one very, spoiled, little girl, all under the age of five. Growing up M.E.G. was an avid journal writer. She wrote her first romance novel at the age of 14, and it was pretty bad, but over the years and through all the kids she honed her craft. When M.E.G. doesn't have her mom hat on, you can find her reading, working on her next story or watching guilty pleasure television.