Blog Tour: Carols and Chaos by Cindy Anstey


Carols and Chaos
Cindy Anstey
Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: October 9th 2018
Genres: Historical, Romance, Young Adult
A lady’s maid and a valet become entangled in a yuletide counterfeiting scheme in this romantic Christmas YA adventure.
1817. The happy chaos of the Yuletide season has descended upon the country estate of Shackleford Park in full force, but lady’s maid Kate Darby barely has the time to notice. Between her household duties, caring for her ailing mother, and saving up money to someday own a dress shop, her hands are quite full. Matt Harlow is also rather busy. He’s performing double-duty, acting as valet for both of the Steeple brothers, two of the estate’s holiday guests.
Falling in love would be a disaster for either of them. But staving off their feelings for each other becomes the least of their problems when a devious counterfeiting scheme reaches the gates of Shackleford Park, and Kate and Matt are unwittingly swept up in the intrigue. Full of sweetness, charm, and holiday shenanigans, Carols and Chaos is perfect for fans of Jane Austen and Downton Abbey.

Release Day Blitz: Royally Yours by Emma Chase


Royally Yours
by Emma Chase

Princess Lenora Celeste Beatrice Arabella Pembrook had an unusual childhood. She was raised to be a Queen—the first Queen of Wessco.
It’s a big deal.
When she’s crowned at just nineteen, the beautiful young monarch is prepared to rule. She’s charming, clever, confident and cunning.
What she isn’t…is married.
It’s her advising council’s first priority. It’s what Parliament is demanding, and what her people want.
Lenora has no desire to tie herself to a man—particularly one who only wants her for her crown. But compromises must be made and royals must do their duty.
Even Queens. Especially them.
**
Years ago, Edward Langdon Richard Dorian Rourke, walked away from his title and country. Now he’s an adventurer—climbing mountains, exploring jungles, going wherever he wants, when he wants—until family devotion brings him home.
And a sacred promise keeps him there.
To Edward, the haughty, guarded little Queen is intriguing, infuriating…and utterly captivating. Wanting her just might drive him mad—or become his greatest adventure.
**
Within the cold, stone walls of the royal palace—mistrust threatens, wills clash, and an undeniable, passionate love will change the future of the monarchy forever.
Every dynasty has a beginning. Every legend starts with a story.
This is theirs.

iBooks | B&N | Google Play | Kobo | Amazon

Book Review: The Darkest Star by Jennifer L. Armentrout

The Darkest Star

Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: Origin, book 1
Publisher: Tor Teen (October 30, 2018)
Hardcover, 368 pages
Goodreads     |     Amazon

Summary
When seventeen-year-old Evie Dasher is caught up in a raid at a notorious club known as one of the few places where humans and the surviving Luxen can mingle freely, she meets Luc, an unnaturally beautiful guy she initially assumes is a Luxen...but he is in fact something much more powerful. Her growing attraction for Luc will lead her deeper and deeper into a world she'd only heard about, a world where everything she thought she knew will be turned on its head...

#1 New York Times, USA Today, and internationally bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout returns to the universe of the Lux in this brand new series, featuring beloved characters both new and old.


Blog Tour: The Viscount Can Wait by Marie Tremayne (Excerpt, Teaser, Giveaway)


After five years away, Lady Eliza Cartwick isn’t relishing returning to the whirl of the London season. But the young widow knows to ensure the best future for herself and her young daughter Rosa, she must remarry. If only Lord Evanston, the dashing rogue who has haunted her dreams since she was sixteen, didn’t insist on distracting her with his searing looks and lingering touches at the most inconvenient times…
Thomas, Lord Evanston has wanted Eliza since her engagement ball all those years ago. His best friend’s sister has constantly been out of reach…until now. The forbidden has always tempted him, but when Thomas realizes he wants the object of his fantasies for far more than a dalliance, he must convince her that he’s not just a rake; he’s a viscount who’s worth the wait.

About the Book

The Viscount Can Wait
by Marie Tremayne
SeriesThe Reluctant Brides
GenreAdult
Historical Romance
PublisherAvon Impulse
Publication DateOctober 23, 2018
Purchase Your Copy Today!
Amazon  |  Avon Romance  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Google Play  |  iBooks

Book Review: The Supervillain and Me by Danielle Banas

The Supervillain and Me

Author: Danielle Banas
Publisher: Swoon Reads (July 10, 2018)
Hardcover, 320 pages
Goodreads     |     Amazon

Summary
Never trust a guy in spandex.

In Abby Hamilton’s world, superheroes do more than just stop crime and save cats stuck in trees—they also drink milk straight from the carton and hog the television remote. Abby’s older brother moonlights as the famous Red Comet, but without powers of her own, following in his footsteps has never crossed her mind.

That is, until the city’s newest vigilante comes bursting into her life.

After saving Abby from an attempted mugging, Morriston’s fledgling supervillain Iron Phantom convinces her that he’s not as evil as everyone says, and that their city is under a vicious new threat. As Abby follows him deeper into their city’s darkest secrets, she comes to learn that heroes can’t always be trusted, and sometimes it’s the good guys who wear black.
 


Discussion: Top 5 Non-Horror Halloween Movies (#blogoween)



Today's #blogoween discussion is hosted by Anna @ The Bursting Bookshelf!

The prompt is pretty straightforward: What are your top five non-horror Halloween movies?

#5 Corpse Bride

"When a shy groom practices his wedding vows in the inadvertent presence of a deceased young woman, she rises from the grave assuming he has married her."
If you've spent any time around my blog before, you know my genre of choice is romance. So of course I need at least one Halloween movie with romantic elements, and The Corpse Bride is wonderful. Plus the songs in this movie are so fun. And I like to think that Victor is Jack Skellington from Nightmare Before Christmas back when he was alive.



#4 Don't Look Under the Bed

"A teen enlists the help of an imaginary friend named Larry Houdini to deal with a prank-playing bogeyman, who's framing her for his dastardly deeds."
OK, if you're not familiar, Don't Look Under the Bed is a Disney Channel Original Movie from 1999. Frances lives in a small town, and as Halloween approaches all these weird pranks start happening, and all evidence points to them being her fault. A boy who calls himself Larry Houdini shows up and 1) tells her he's an imaginary friend, 2) tells her she's being framed by the boogeyman, and 3) offers to help her catch said boogeyman. This movie is the best, and if you haven't watched it you need to. And I'm not just saying that because I have a total soft spot for movies about imaginary friends.



#3 Halloweentown

"After learning she is a witch, a girl helps save a town full of other supernatural creatures."
Another Disney Channel Original Movie, this one is from 1998. (What can I say? Disney gave good Halloween in the late 90's!) There are actually four movies in the series, but the first one is the best. I love the feel of Halloween town, and the plot is really fun. I also like the quasi-romance elements in this one (they're there, I swear!) Also, Debbie Reynolds - 'nuff said.



#2 The Worst Witch

Let's go wayyyy back for this one, all the way to 1986! I'm not talking The Worst Witch series on Netflix, I'm talking the 1986 TV movie."Mildred is one of the young girls at a prestigious witch academy. She can't seem to do anything right and is picked on by classmates and teachers. The headmistress of the school, Miss Cackle, has an evil twin sister (Agatha) who plans to destroy the school. Can Mildred foil the plan before the Grand Wizard (Tim Curry) comes to the Academy for the Halloween celebration you'll never forget?!!" I mean, did you really need to read further than "Tim Curry"? In case you need further proof, check out this video clip of Tim Curry's big song and dance number, with the SUPER HIGH TECH 1986 SPECIAL EFFECTS!


#1 Hocus Pocus

"A curious youngster moves to Salem, where he struggles to fit in before awakening a trio of diabolical witches that were executed in the 17th century."
I can't believe I'm seeing lists without this movie on them! WHAT? Honestly, my entire list would just be Hocus Pocus as all five movies if it could be, haha. Sure, this movie has a plot that's about Max and his sister Dani and him trying to get with Allison and blah blah blah, but we all know what it's really about, and that's the Sanderson sisters.



What are your favorite non-horror Halloween movies?

Book Review: Not Her Gargoyle by Annie Nicholas

Not Her Gargoyle

Author: Annie Nicholas
Series: Not This, book 4
Publisher: Green Mountain Publishing (June 18, 2018)
Kindle, 275 pages
Goodreads     |     Amazon

Summary
Ruby is done with jerks, dead-end jobs, and eviction notices. Everyone else she knows is finding ways out of this crappy neighborhood, so why can’t she? Since opportunities refuse to fall from the sky, Ruby makes her own. To hell with the little voice in her heart whispering about love. She never met a man she wanted to keep…then she met a gargoyle. Men were boring after all. 

Nick was a con, a thief, and a rogue. He couldn’t keep a dime in his pocket even if it was glued. Then he met a ruby. Not one from the earth but one of flesh and blood. And ass. Let’s not forget the ass. Stealing her heart was now all he wanted. 

He has a plan that could make both their dreams come true. It only involves an itsy-bitsy risk. All they must do is rob a witch. 

Oh, and avoid the dragons

Warning: Beware of despicable gargoyles with hearts of gold. They will sweep you off your feet when you're not looking.


Book Review: Sugar Spells by Lola Dodge

Sugar Spells

Author: Lola Dodge
Series: The Spellwork Syndicate, book 2
Publisher: InkMonster, LLC (October 30, 2018)
Kindle, 270 pages
Goodreads     |     Amazon

Summary
After her run-in with a jealous warlock, apprentice baker Anise Wise can’t wait to get back the kitchen where she belongs. But thanks to her brush with death, the land of the living isn’t all cupcakes and marshmallows.

Anise’s magical mojo is way out of whack and her evolving powers are stirring up trouble. As the town buzzes with news that Anise can bake deathly spells, unsavory characters start lining up for a taste. They’ll stop at nothing for the chance to use Anise and her witchcraft to further their own plots.

She plans to hole up researching magic recipes until the attention dies down, but then she discovers the horrifying terms of her bodyguard’s contract. Wynn has saved her life so many times, she can’t leave him trapped. But doing the right thing will mean risking death or worse—being cast out of her dream job.

For this witch, justice might not be as sweet as advertised.

Book Blitz: Crazy Scottish Love by Jessie Donovan (excerpt, giveaway)


Crazy Scottish Love
Jessie Donovan
(Love in Scotland, #1)
Publication date: October 15th 2018
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Romance
Tired of the online dating scene and her nagging mother, Donella Spencer braves her eccentric extended family and heads for a month-long visit to Scotland to stay with them. As long as she keeps to herself and avoids her family as much as possible, it should be easy to relax, right?
What she doesn’t count on is running into Robbie Campbell, the guy who tried so hard to ditch her nearly twenty years ago that it took a search and rescue team to save her. Not only that, she doesn’t expect to fall for Robbie’s daughter’s big, brown eyes and agree to hold a themed costume party for Donella’s 31st birthday. One that involves her relatives dressing in nineteenth century safari garb and dusty, old animal outfits.
And none of that even begins to address her grandmother’s attempts to matchmake and marry off Donella within the month.
It’s going to be one long, trying summer in Scotland. However, sometimes the strangest situations can show what someone needs in life. Because if Donella falls in love with a man who can put up with her family, she may finally have her happy ending in sight.
Provided her relatives don’t drive her crazy first.

Top 10 Halloween Reads: A highly eclectic list

I thought it would be fun to do a post about our favorite Halloween reads. These could be books that are specifically about Halloween or Halloween-themed, or just books that get us into the Halloween spirit or that we get moved to read at that Halloween-y time of year. 

For your convenience, my (Elley Otter) bits will be orange and Peekaboo's will be purple (because those are Halloween colors to me, OK?) 

I'll start:


Howl's Moving Castle

There's nothing overtly Halloween-y about Howl's Moving Castle, but for whatever reason I always get the tingles to give it a reread around Halloween. Maybe it's the wizards and witches and fire demons, maybe it's that animated scarecrow with the turnip head giving me the fall vibes, but Howl's Moving Castle is always on my list of Halloween reads. 


Flight or Fright

I definitely go in for "read ALL the scary things around Halloween!", and this anthology, put together by Bev Vincent, and master of horror Stephen King, definitely fits the bill. They give us 17 short horror stories that take place on airplanes, spanning writers from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to Joe Hill. The audiobook is also fantastic, by the way, and is narrated by multiple people including Stephen King himself. (Whose voice is way higher than I expected.) Maybe don't read or listen to this on a plane though. 


Sabriel

Hey, I'm getting closer with my choices! Sabriel is a great Halloween read because, hello, she's a reverse necromancer who runs around putting the dead back to rest while she tries to solve the mystery of what happened to her missing father, who is trapped somewhere in death. This series (because it's the first in a series, WINNING) still has the most amazing (and my favorite) system of death and what happens when you die that I've ever read, and I'm undecided whether this book or the next in the series, Lireal, is my favorite. 
Also it says it's YA, but I first read it as a teen and I still love it every bit as much as a 30-something-mostly-adul-most-of-the-time (and not in that nostalgic way, but in that it-stands-on-it's-own-as-a-legit-book-adults-can-love way).


The Haunting of Hill House


This Gothic classic by Shirley Jackson has been adapted into film, and most recently TV, but the original book is still totally fabulous. With it's classic "lab rats in a proverbial maze" story line, ghosties at every turn, possible gas lighting, and an unreliable (crazy? not crazy?) protagonist, this book is haunting and beautifully written. Also, look at that alt cover! Uggh! So pretty! 



Hocus Pocus & The All New Sequel

Speaking of books adapted to film, how about the reverse? I haven't read it yet, but this year saw the release of Hocus Pocus & The All New Sequel (could have used a catchier title, I'll be honest) and I'm hopeful based on the initial reviews that this will be one of my go-to Halloween reads going forward. Bonus, the sequel is supposed to have a pretty diverse cast of characters and is supposed to be pretty great! I have high hopes, and will be reading it in the next week or so, so watch for a review. ;)
Candy Corn Murder

Candy Corn Murder (A Lucy Stone Mystery Book 22) by [Meier, Leslie]This cozy mystery features catapulted pumpkins, a dead guy in a trunk, an old ghost story, and local reporter/amateur detective Lucy Stone who has to exonerate her husband and solve a murder. Guys. Not only is this one swimming with the Halloween spirit, there are catapulted pumpkins. Plus it's a cozy  mystery, which means no crazy violence/dismemberment/really scary stuff, so it's nice for those who like to enjoy the Halloween spirit without getting their pants scared off.







"Not His" series

Because what kind of romance reader/blogger would I be if I didn't have some romance on my Halloween book list, I really like this paranormal romance Not His series. While it's not overtly Halloween themed, it's set in a town with a heavy shifter community that has shifters of all sorts, from the local wolf shifter pack on down to rabbit shifters and right on up to the brooding artist dragon shifter. There are also curses, witches, vampires, and gargoyles, so what's not Halloweeny about that? 



Eek! Halloween! 


This adorable children's book by Sandra Boynton is the perfect Halloween read for you/your kids/your pets. Nervous chickens notice strange things are happening! A pumpkin with glowing eyes! An oversized mouse! A robot!! WHAT DOES IT MEAN!! 





Little Boo

This is a favorite of my two sons. Little Boo is about a pumpkin seed who wants so badly to be scary. it's so cute, and is the perfect length for a bedtime story. It's sweet, and repetitive enough in a few spots that my 4 year old sort of "reads along" while my 2 year old points to all the pictures he recognizes ("Moon." "Boot." "Bucket." "Snow." "Punkin'." Yes, yes. Shut up now and let Mommy read the story.) 




Mrs Jeepers' Scariest Halloween... EVER!! 

Do you remember the Bailey School Kids books from when you were little? The juvi series in which a group of elementary school kids are determine to figure out if various adults they encounter are in fact monsters like werewolves, ogres, Frankenstein, etc. There are nearly 70 of them. Fun reads, too! This book is one of the Super Specials, in which Mrs. Jeepers, their teacher, and possibly also a vampire, might be turning the kids in town into monsters, and our five intrepid heroes have to figure it out. (I always had a bit of a crush on Mrs. Jeepers, if I'm honest.) (Also the very first fanfic I ever wrote, before I even knew what fanfiction was was Bailey School Kids.) 


And there you have it! If that wasn't a wild and bizarre ride, well, I don't want to know what kind of weird stuff you do on the regular. ;) What are some of your favorite Halloween reads? Do you have favorites that you like to reread during this season?

Book Review: Wicked Nix by Lena Coakley

Wicked Nix

Author: Lena Coakley
Illustrator: Jaime Zollars
Publisher: Amulet Books (October 9, 2018)
Hardcover, 176 pages
Goodreads     |     Amazon     |     Barnes & Noble

Summary
Mischievous woodland fairy Nix is up to no good. His beloved fairy queen has gone away, leaving him with a very important job: He must protect the forest from a most dangerous enemy—humans.

When a determined invader trespasses on his territory, Nix’s skills are put to the test as he invents several wicked tricks to chase the sorry fellow away. But when his efforts don’t go quite according to plan, it becomes clear that this intruder—and this sprite—may not be at all what they seem.

Book Review: Vampires Like It Hot by Lynsay Sands

Vampires Like It Hot

Author: Lynsay Sands
Series: Argeneau, Book 28
Publisher: Avon (September 18, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
Goodreads     |     Amazon

Summary
“Vampires...”

When Raffaele Notte pulls a barely dressed, disoriented woman from the ocean, the last thing he expects is for her to utter that word. The immortal has come to the island resort to help his cousin, but now, it seems, there are rogue vampires dining on unsuspecting tourists. And he soon realizes that not only is Jess a target, she’s also the life mate he’s been waiting for…

Vampires are real. Jess would’ve never believed it until she saw them with her own eyes. She knows she has to get off the island, and her gallant rescuer has offered to help. There’s something about Raffaele that’s unlike any man she has ever met, and his touch sends pleasure through her that is beyond all imagining. But when Jess discovers who he really is, will she risk life as she knows it for a chance of forever by his side?

Blog Tour: The Forever Christmas Tree by Sandra Hill (excerpt, teaser, giveaway)


The Christmas bells are chiming across the Outer Banks town of Bell Cove, North Carolina, but there’s one local ‘grinch’ who’s not listening . . .
He’s got bad-boy looks and a Bah Humbug attitude, so when the local paper asks the villagers to vote on the “Biggest Local Grinch” as a fund-raising project, Ethan Rutledge isn’t surprised to hear he’s made the ballot. He might own the local Christmas Tree Farm, but the holiday hasn’t been welcome in his home since Wendy Patterson left him heart-broken twelve years ago.
But now Wendy’s back, fresh from a tour of duty as a female Navy SEAL. She’s bold, beautiful, and has five Navy buddies trailing after her—as if she needs a bodyguard! And what’s all this about them wanting to start a treasure hunting company right here in Bell Cove’s failing bell factory? Then Wendy learns about how Ethan’s been nurturing the one thing he has to remember her by: a gorgeous Norway Spruce tree.
Can the magic of Christmas and the spirit of the town help rekindle the romance between two people who thought they’d left love behind years ago?

About the Book

The Forever Christmas Tree
by Sandra Hill
Series
Bell Sound Series
Genre
Adult
Contemporary Romance
Publisher
Avon Books
Publication Date
September 25, 2018
Purchase Your Copy Today!
Amazon  |  Avon Romance  |  Barnes & Noble  |  Google Play  |  iBooks

Blog Tour: Fragments of Ash by Katy Regnery (guest post, giveaway)


Fragments of Ash
Katy Regnery
(A Modern Fairytale #7)
Publication date: October 1st 2018
Genres: Fairy Tales, Romance, Adult
From New York Times bestselling author Katy Regnery comes a dark and twisted retelling of the beloved fairytale, Cinderella!
My name is Ashley Ellis…
I was thirteen years old when my mother – retired supermodel, Tig – married Mosier Răumann, who was twice her age and the head of the Răumann crime family.
When I turned eighteen, my mother mysteriously died. Only then did I discover the dark plans my stepfather had in store for me all along; the debauched “work” he expected me to do.
With the help of my godfather, Gus, I have escaped from Mosier’s clutches, but his twin sons and henchmen have been tasked with hunting me down. And they will stop at nothing to return my virgin body to their father
…dead or alive.
** Contemporary Romance. Due to profanity and very strong sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.**
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
Fragments of Ash is part of the ~a modern fairytale~ collection: contemporary, standalone romances inspired by beloved fairy tales.
The Vixen and the Vet (Beauty & the Beast) – available now
Never Let You Go (Hansel & Gretel) – available now
Ginger’s Heart (Little Red Riding Hood) – available now
Dark Sexy Knight (Camelot) – available now
Don’t Speak (The Little Mermaid) – available now
Sheer Heaven (Rapunzel) – available now
Fragments of Ash (Cinderella) – available now
Swan Song (The Ugly Duckling) – coming soon

Discussion Posts & 2019 Discussion Challenge

I've loved participating in the 2018 Discussion Challenge hosted by Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction and Shannon @ It Starts at M...