RAW DEAL (Larson Brothers #1) by CHERRIE LYNN :: REVIEW

Standalone in a series. MMA Romance

raw-deal

SYNOPSIS

Savannah’s brother was killed in a cage fight with Mike “Red Reaper” Larson after a savage punch to the head.

When Mike shows up at the funeral, he’s nothing like Savannah expected. Gone is the fierce, brutal beast she’s seen in the cage. In his place is a beautiful man torn with guilt, seeking forgiveness, and willing to do anything to ease her pain.

Her family doesn’t approve, but her heart doesn’t stand a chance. Irresistibly drawn together, neither of them can deny the intoxicating desire unleashed between them, turning their pain into the most exquisite pleasure.

But every time Mike steps into the cage, Savannah knows she could lose him too. She can’t go through that again, but how can she let go of the one man who sets her body and soul on fire?

Pre Order RAW DEAL below – Releasing 24th January

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Raw Deal Review

4 Stars

‘They were only two people trying to come to grips with their new realities.’

It’s been quite a few years since we last read a book by Cherrie Lynn. We’ve missed her. When we talk ‘frowned upon’ love stories a specific kind is conjured in our minds. However, Raw Deal can be thought of in those terms, as in two people who due to circumstances should not be together. This romance had us thinking about emotional morality and comparing it to what we would feel, should this be real life. Would we be in the yes or the no camp? However, nothing is just black nor white. There’s ultimately grey as well, and in that grey are a swirl of emotions, passions, understanding and compassion all mixed up together to make an area of; but what if?

‘Hard to believe a hand that touched her so gently could ever hurt anyone.’

Savannah and her family suffer a tragic loss when her brother dies in a cage fight against the fierce beast that is Mike Larson. A tragic accident with dire repercussions. How do you go on from here? How do you cope and who do you turn to? Who would have thought that love can blossom in the face of violence?

‘What the fuck did you do when the “right thing” felt so completely wrong?’

Mike Larson has a story behind him and it’s one of sadness and grave responsibility. He’s a force to be reckoned with, but his heart is caring and he loves fiercely. All he wants is to protect those he cares about, those he loves. Savannah’s heart wants what it wants but her conscience questions it every step of the way until the only voice she can hear is the beat of her heart.

“But I do want you to be real.”

“This is…real as it gets, darlin’.”

“You’re nothing like I expected you to be. I only saw how you were with your opponents…”

We haven’t read an MMA fighter romance in a while but can’t help think that this is one of our favourites. Why? Because we felt like we were in the audience, we tasted and smelt the blood, sweat and heightened adrenaline. We saw it and we believed it. Not only that, we felt the guilt and the grief; the confusion and the rejection. We understood it, yet we fought against it alongside our heroine. This, at the same time as feeling protective of our hero despite what transpired at his hands. We loved Savannah and Mike’s story. There was something sweet and innocent about it whilst at the same time it was steamy with a dash of angst and aggression.

“It was just…a perfect storm of catastrophic circumstances.”

 Raw Deal

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MENACE (Scarlet Scars #1) by J.M. DARHOWER :: REVIEW

First book in the Scarlet Scars Duet. A gritty, powerful anti hero Mafia romance.

menace

SYNOPSIS

Once upon a time, there was a guy who got so fed up with life that he resorted to murder and mayhem just to feel alive.

Lorenzo Gambini is bored. So fucking bored. Most people either annoy him or avoid him, afraid to face him. Figuratively. Literally. With his face partially disfigured, scarred, he looks every bit the monster the stories make him out to be: the notorious menace they call Scar. They say he’s a sociopath. Maybe he’s a psychopath. Whatever path he’s on, people tend to stay far away from it.

Until one day, a young woman bumps right into him–a woman just as fed up with life, but for much different reasons. With a Scarlet Letter inked on her wrist and secrets buried deep in her soul, Morgan Myers is running from something… or maybe somebody. Lorenzo isn’t quite sure.

You can bet your ass he’s going to figure it out, though.

MENACE is available to purchase below

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NB: Grievous (the conclusion) will be available 6th February


Menace Review

Reviewed by Jenny & Gitte 

4.5 engrossing stars!

“You got me?”
“I got you.”

J.M. Darhower has again delivered an enthralling story that set our hearts racing at a million miles an hour Hollywood needs to make her Mafia romances into a movie, because her words are so visually captivating, we can imagine it playing out before our eyes, as we did with Menace.  We were once again captivated by her story, fascinated and madly in love with an antihero with a ‘couldn’t give a fuck attitude’, and a feisty, strong heroine who had us championing them both at every turn.

We first met Lorenzo Gabini in Target On Our Back, and were beyond excited when we realised he was the central character in Menace. You can absolutely go into this duet as standalone’s as Menace/Grievous are essentially Lorenzo and Morgan’s story with JM Darhower doing a fabulous job of getting us up to speed without wasting a precious moment of actual story.

‘Nobody trusts their gut anymore, but they ought to. Sometimes wires get crossed in the brain, things get all jumbled, everything gets confused, and your heart…..you can’t fucking trust that son of a bitch. It’ll be the first to betray you. It’ll make you feel like the world is a beautiful place. It’ll make you forget all the darkness. It’ll make you hope, and believe, and then it’ll destroy you, just when you start to think maybe it’s okay to not be so goddamn frigid.’

What an exhilarating, exciting start to this duet. As usual with this authors stories, she grabbed us from the very first page and never let us go. There’s something so incredibly addictive about her stories, and Menace is no exception.  The Mafia, the Bratva, a troubled girl and man with a thirst for revenge, all went into making this one a totally addictive winner and we need the next book!

“What do I smell like?”
“Like sex and shame….and something distinctly vanilla.”
“It’ll fade. It’s just my lotion…vanilla orchid. The sex, well, I’m afraid you’ll have to wash that off.”
And the shame?”
I ask, strolling toward her. “How long until that fades.”
She laughs dryly. “I’ll let you know if it ever happens.”

Lorenzo Gambini, is the epitome of the antihero. He’s the guy you would expect to hate but can’t. He’s brutal, pragmatic, unforgiving, has a short fuse and is intolerant of most people except his brother Leo, who he will protect at all costs. He’s also bored and completely unapologetic about his lifestyle and his thirst for violence. He loves oranges and is one engaging, witty and snarky narrator injecting humour amidst the mayhem. Seriously, this guy had us in fits with his internal monologue. At times it was as though he was arguing with the reader. It was priceless! His outlook is ‘it is what it is and I don’t give a fuck’ in the world according to Lorenzo and yup, we fell in love with him!

Lorenzo quite literally bumps into Morgan Myers, a ballsy, troubled young woman with a price on her head who is hoarding many secrets. Just what and who is she running from/to and why? Lorenzo’s boredom soon turns to intense interest when it registers with him that Morgan has pulled one over on him by stealing his wallet. No one gets one over on Lorenzo Gambini! He seeks her out and soon realises Morgan needs help when it comes to light that she has somehow pissed off the Russian Mafia.

‘I used to read all these fairy tales, and I just think about how fucked up it is to realize that heroes are make-believe but monsters are real.’

The story is told in dual pov’s with an interesting pov added in which kept us guessing as it heartbreakingly unfolded throughout the story.  J.M. Darhower never fails to breathe life into every new book she produces, despite a similar theme being woven throughout. We couldn’t look away from this book for a second and we need Grievous now! What a gritty, dark, sexy, heartbreaking and engrossing ride and we’re not done yet!

“Who broke you?”

 

Menace Teaser (1)

 


TBB also Recommends
MONSTER IN HIS EYES SERIES by J M DARHOWER

Monster in His Eyes Book One :: amazon us | amazon uk | our review
Torture To Her Soul Book Two :: amazon us | amazon uk | our review
Target on Our Backs Book Three ::our review|  amazon us | amazon uk


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LOVE IN LINGERIE by ALESSANDRA TORRE :: REVIEW

Standalone sexy office romance

love 16th

SYNOPSIS

I hired her to fix my company, to bring Marks Lingerie back to life. I didn’t expect her to become my friend. I didn’t expect to fall in love with her.

The first rule of business is to never touch your employees. I think there is another rule about not falling for your best friend—a rule against imagining the curves of her body, or the way her breathing would change if I pulled down her panties and unzipped my pants.

Now, I can’t wait any longer. I’m tossing out the rules.

Damn the company.
Damn our friendship.
Damn my fears.

LOVE IN LINGERIE is available to purchase below

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Love in Lingerie

Reviewed by Gitte & Jenny

 ‘The man should be illegal.’

Sexy, fun, seductive and enticing….there’s knickers and bra’s for every occasion and there’s Love in Lingerie.  We jumped straight in and were immediately swept away by everything Trey; pass the fan please! Who doesn’t love a sexy office romance? Even better, who doesn’t love a strong and feisty heroine, a mature and sexy hero as well as a friends to lovers romance.

“But despite what you may have heard about me, there are certain lines I don’t cross, and fucking my employees is one of them.”

“Literally or figuratively?”

When Kate joins Trey’s company there’s an immediate sexual tension which is soon overtaken by a beautiful and cheeky friendship. Different as night and day, they have an immediate strong connection which grows over the years. We felt it and revelled in it. It was swoony, flirtatious and so very delicious. There was heat, vulnerability, understanding and angst wrapped up in lace and leather.

‘If this woman was lingerie, she’d be black leather, with studs along the seams and enough of a dominatrix vibe to give a man pause. If this woman was lingerie, I’d strip it off and then properly show her who is in charge.

Trey and Kate’s story is an enjoyable, hot and easy read. It’s well written yet has a very slow build. Which in some ways felt a contradiction as their story spans a few years yet we never really experienced detailed time with them. A romance which felt unattainable, whilst in the same breath, smoke was wafting off of the pages from the intensity of sexual chemistry and attraction.

If Love in Lingerie was a bra and knickers set, we think it would be a lacy, teasing and tantalising one piece with silky ties that goes on for miles in hot fiery red. 

4 Stars

Love in Lingerie A.T


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WORTH THE WAIT (McKinney/Walker #1) by CLAUDIA CONNOR :: REVIEW

Emotional second chance romance featuring children

worth-the-wait-10th-jan

SYNOPSIS
He broke her heart. When he finds out just how badly, it will break his too.

Nick Walker found the love of his life when he was just nineteen.

Found her.
Loved her.
Lost her.

It’s been ten years since Nick watched the only woman he ever loved walk out of his life. Now this FBI Special Agent will do anything to win her back.

But it won’t be easy…

Mia’s heart was shattered by Nick. They’ll have to face their painful past if they want a future, including Mia’s own secret about that day it all fell apart.

Do you believe in second chances.

WORTH THE WAIT is available to purchase below

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Worth The Wait

Reviewed by Gitte & Jenny

‘They just were. Nick and Mia. Always.’

We picked Worth the Wait up not having read the series from which this is a spin off, on the basis it’s being tagged a standalone. For us, we felt like we’d missed out somewhat on Hannah and Nick’s sibling bond, but yes, in most respects this stands alone. There’s absolutely no question that Claudia Connor’s writing is beautiful. She demands attention with a powerful and passionate prose. We felt incredibly sad with very heavy hearts as we read one of the more emotionally upsetting romances we’ve read in a while. It’s very difficult to read a story where the heroine and hero spend more agonising time apart than they do together. You begin to doubt it’ll ever happen for whichever tragic reasons presented.

“It’s been a long time. Maybe you don’t know me anymore.”

“I know you.”

We fell in love with all the characters in this story; especially Nick and his much younger sister, Hannah. Their relationship melted our hearts whilst making us all teary at the same time. Nick found himself in the distressing position of having to hold his parent-less family together when he became the head of the family through heart-breaking circumstances. A heavy load for a young man barely out of his teens. His caring, protective, determined and nurturing side knew no bounds and we fell in love with this young man.

“How can I forget when you always remind me?”

Worth the Wait is a book of continuous past and present. Through the flashbacks we learn of how it all began for Mia and Nick; with two year old Hannah in tow. From the present we learn of them being apart, and the struggles facing them individually, due to a horrific event which separated them a decade ago. It broke us. In the flashback’s we felt some of their love and connection. In the present we felt their agony and subsequent emotional pain.

‘He was barely there, so lost in his dark cage of anger and guilt he’d built for himself, he’d locked himself in and locked her out.’

Whilst we loved many, many parts of this story we felt the balance was excessively weighted towards the incredibly heavy angst, guilt, responsibility, despair and suffering. We barely experienced any joy nor happiness.

“You’ve got the past clenched so tightly in your fist, I’ll never be enough to make you let it go. I can’t go back to that place we were. It nearly killed me.”

Now, we love our highly emotional reads, however we do need some happy or at least an epilogue that completely mends our broken hearts and leaves us more than satisfied that everything is okay and everyone is where they need to be. Particularly after a journey that was as emotionally taxing as this one. This is a personal preference so we may be in the minority. Saying that, there is no question that this talented Author made our hearts bleed and kept us riveted, needing to find out if Mia and Nick would ever find their way back to where they began after so many years separating them.

“It still shakes me that something so enormous as our love could be erased so simply.”

3.5 Stars

 Worth the Wait Teaser


The McKinney Series by Claudia Connor

Worth The Fall Book One

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Worth The Risk Book Two

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Worth It All Book Three

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TBB WEEKLY WRAP-UP :: LATEST NEW RELEASES/JANUARY UPCOMING RELEASES/EBOOK SALES/OUR LATEST READS!

Welcome to another TBB Weekly Wrap-Up, where we bring you the New Releases, let you know about the fabulous Upcoming Releases headed your way, and keep you updated on the latest Ebook Sales . We also share with you the books we’ve read /reviewed this past week.

tbb-weekly-wrap-up

Those of you who follow us, know  we both read….a lot! We can’t go a day without getting stuck into a book and our Kindles go where we go. Reading and reviewing is a passion. It’s why we started blogging, and it’s the reason why, nearly five years later we’re still first and foremost a Read/Review Blog.

The way we blog hasn’t changed over the years in that we’re still as passionate now as we were when we launched TotallyBookedBlog in 2012. This is reflected in our continued need to read and devour as many books as we do. We’ll always share our honest thoughts on a book no matter how we felt about it, because at then end of the day, we’re here for you. To help you find your next fabulous read and we can only do that if we can personally recommend books from experience, which is exactly what we do!

Happy Reading and just check out the amazing books on offer this week! 


WHAT WE’VE READ THIS WEEK

WORTH THE WAIT – THE WALKER/McKINNEY #1 by CLAUDIA CONNOR

‘It shouldn’t hurt to fall in love with someone a second time.’

Standalone in a series/Spin Off Series. Second chance romance.

worth-the-wait-10th-jan

SYNOPSIS
He broke her heart. When he finds out just how badly, it will break his too.
Nick Walker found the love of his life when he was just nineteen.
Found her.
Loved her.
Lost her.
It’s been ten years since Nick watched the only woman he ever loved walk out of his life. Now this FBI Special Agent will do anything to win her back.
But it won’t be easy…
Mia’s heart was shattered by Nick. They’ll have to face their painful past if they want a future, including Mia’s own secret about that day it all fell apart.
Do you believe in second chances.

WORTH THE WAIT is available to purchase below
our 3.5 star review to come 

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LUCIAN DIVINE by RENEE CARLINO

“Did I not make it clear? I’m in love with her. The crazy kind of love that you and I have seen over and over…in them, not us. It’s the rip-your-bleeding-heart-out-and-step-in-front-of-a-speeding-train kind of love.”

Standalone Paranormal Romance. Emotional and beautiful.

lucian-divine-9th-jan

SYNOPSIS
From USA Today Bestselling Author, Renée Carlino, comes a totally unique love story that is sure to make you question what’s out there . . . or who.
“My guardian angel is a drunk.”
Evelyn Casey’s life is at a standstill. She’s in her mid-twenties, struggling with the dating scene in San Francisco. Nothing seems to be working out, and she’s starting to think that she’ll live out her days in her crummy apartment with her overbearing roommate, Brooklyn. It’s absurd, but sometimes Evey longs for a guardian angel to show up and save the day.
And then he does. Seriously. His name is Lucian and he’s a guardian angel, been on the job for two thousand years. His sudden presence in her life is both good—he’s brilliant, witty, and warm—and bad—he’s brilliant, witty, warm, and hot as —-. But as perfect as Lucian seems, he’s got problems of his own. He’s taken up drinking and he’s brazenly inserted himself into Evey’s life, going against the greatest cosmic law ever created.
For Evey, the rules are simple: You are not allowed to hook up with your guardian angel. But sometimes fulfilling your destiny requires a leap of faith, a confrontation with God.
Yes, God as in God.

LUCIAN DIVINE is available to purchase below
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THE OVER DUET by J.A. DeROUEN

‘Love changes over time. The edges may dull, the butterflies hibernate… but sometimes, the best things sharpen and flourish as years pass.’

Friends to lovers, angsty second chance romance

LOW OVER HIGH BOOK ONE – 99c/99p

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EVER OVER AFTER BOOK TWO – 99c/99p

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LOW OVER HIGH BOOK ONE
SYNOPSIS
I fancy myself a purveyor of truth, a sifter of lies, a cutter of bullshit. It’s not a gift, but rather, all skill, honed to a razor’s edge after one too many trips down the rabbit hole.
Some may dismiss my talent as misplaced and misguided cynicism, but they’d be wrong. Cliches about hope and faith in mankind are concocted unicorn farts, an effort to keep the dreamers dreaming. Experiences don’t lie—people do.
While I’m not proud of the circumstances that led me to this way of thinking, I respect the journey. The road to enlightenment can be dark and foreboding, but the destination makes it all worthwhile.
But funny thing about the past—it’s a defiant child refusing to stay in time out. No matter how deeply buried, it can always pop up when least expected, and sink its fucking claws into the flesh of your heart. No, not my heart—I no longer have one. I foolishly gave it away years ago, but I still feel the ripping in my chest as I fist the crumpled note left on my porch.
I’ve avoided this day, ran from it, for the past eight years.
And still we meet again.
But to truly understand … to feel my dread and fear my future as I do, it’s important to know what happened in my past.
Or who…
My name is Marlo Rivers, and this is my story of corrupted love.
MATURE AUDIENCES ONLY 18+
Warning: This book contains graphic content which may not be suitable for sensitive readers.

EVER OVER AFTER BOOK TWO
SYNOPSIS
Marlo … wild-eyed, untamed, and every single thing I’ve ever wanted from this life. I wasn’t ready for her back then. I was a stupid boy with adult feelings and no idea what to do with them. I squandered away every chance she gave me.
Yes, love like ours either burns white hot or crumbles under the pressure.
And now I’m back to sift through the rubble.
Questions and excuses are two things I have in spades. What I need now are answers.
Answers and Low.
Always Low.
My name is Ever Montgomery, and this is my story of love resurrected.

RETREAT – GETAWAY #1 by JAY CROWNOVER

His lips hit my temple as he lifted the hand splayed across my ribs to settle over my racing heart.
“Destroyed, Sunshine. This is what it feels like to be destroyed.”

Standalone in a series. A romance of self discovery and second chances.

retreat

SYNOPSIS
Every once in a while, you need to get away from it all.
I was a woman on the edge, shaken and shattered after a breakup that felt like it tore my entire world apart.
My best friend, sick of watching me drown in misery and melancholy, harassed me until I agreed to go with her on a week-long wilderness retreat.

She promised days spent bonding and getting in touch with our inner bad-asses.
It was supposed to be all about the two of us roughing it and making do with the bare minimum. She assured me we were going to be pushed to our limits in ways that were unimaginable. Neither one of us could have ever guessed just how right she was.
Nowhere in the glossy brochure did it say anything about the fact I was going to have to battle the insufferable but deliciously rugged and sexy trail guide instead of the elements. The brochure also forgot to mention the part that warned when you left civilization behind, there was no place to pack your inhibitions and fears.
I was told that I would be facing a week where the only thing I should expect was the unexpected. However, no one mentioned that I was going to have to fight for my life…and my heart as soon as I ventured into the unknown.
I was a pro at hiding from my feelings but when it came time to face a real threat, one that could change everything, I learned I was more of a no surrender, no retreat kind of girl.

Retreat is a standalone novel, the first in the Getaway series which centers on the hardheaded and brokenhearted Warner brothers and the women that dare to love them.
These boys are very good at putting the wild in wilderness.

RETREAT is available to purchase below:

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VICIOUS – SINNERS of SAINT #1 by L.J. SHEN

‘He was a toxic, poison, and he was going to kill everything beautiful in my life if I let him.’

Standalone anti hero romance

vicious-pic

SYNOPSIS
Emilia
They say love and hate are the same feelings experienced under different circumstances, and it’s true.
The man who comes to me in my dreams also haunts me in my nightmares.
He is a brilliant lawyer.
A skilled criminal.
A beautiful liar.
A bully and a savior, a monster and a lover.
Ten years ago, he made me run away from the small town where we lived. Now, he came for me in New York, and he isn’t leaving until he takes me with him.
Vicious
She is a starving artist.
Pretty and evasive like cherry blossom.
Ten years ago, she barged into my life unannounced and turned everything upside down.
She paid the price.
Emilia LeBlanc is completely off-limits, my best friend’s ex-girlfriend. The woman who knows my darkest secret, and the daughter of the cheap Help we hired to take care of our estate.
That should deter me from chasing her, but it doesn’t.
So she hates me. Big fucking deal.
She better get used to me.

VICIOUS is available to purchase for ONLY 99c/99p

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LATEST NEW RELEASES


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