Daily Archives: 20/01/2018
SPOTLIGHT TOUR ~ The Ones Who Got Away by Roni Loren
Posted by Book Loving Pixies
“Phenomenal. Gets my highest recommendation!”
—LORELEI JAMES, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author
It’s been twelve years since tragedy struck the senior class of Long Acre High School. Only a few students survived that fateful night—a group the media dubbed The Ones Who Got Away.
Liv Arias thought she’d never return to Long Acre—until a documentary brings her and the other survivors back home. Suddenly her old flame, Finn Dorsey, is closer than ever, and their attraction is still white-hot. When a searing kiss reignites their passion, Liv realizes this rough-around-the-edges cop might be exactly what she needs…
Liv’s words cut off as Finn got closer. The man approaching was nothing like the boy she’d known. The bulky football muscles had streamlined into a harder, leaner package and the look in his deep green eyes held no trace of boyish innocence.
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Setup: This scene takes place during an interview for the documentary the survivors are participating in.
“He cursed at me, told me to stay put, and wedged a chair against the outside of the door.” Liv rubbed her lips together. “After that, I heard more shots.”
“Presumably when he and Trevor shot at”—Daniel checked his notes—“Finn Dorsey and Rebecca Lindt.”
Liv reached for her water and took a slow sip, trying not to hear the sounds of that night in her head. The gun going off in that steady, unrelenting way. The cries for help. A Mariah Carey song still playing in the gym. Her own rapid breath as she huddled in that closet and did—nothing. Frozen. For five hours. Only the chair against the door had alerted the SWAT team someone was in there after everything was over. “Yes. I didn’t see any of it, but I know Finn was shot protecting Rebecca. You’d have to ask Rebecca about that part.”
“I did ask her. I plan to ask Finn, too.”
Liv’s head snapped upward at that, the words yanking her out of the memories like a stage hook. “What?”
“Mr. Dorsey is my next interview.”
She stared at Daniel, not sure if she’d heard the words right. “Finn’s here?”
She barely resisted saying, He exists? The guy had become a ghost after the awful months following the shooting. He’d gotten a ton of press for being a hero, and the media had played up the story to the nth degree. The star athlete and son of a local business owner taking a bullet for his date. But within a year, his family had rented out their house and moved out of town, running from the spotlight like everyone else. No one wanted to be that brand of famous.
Liv hadn’t heard anything about him since, and he never gave interviews. She’d decided that he had probably moved to some remote tropical island and changed his name. She would’ve skipped town back then, too—if she’d had the funds to do it.
“Yes,” Daniel said, tipping his head toward the spot over her left shoulder. “He got here a few minutes ago. He’s declined to be on camera, but he’s agreed to an interview.”
With that, she couldn’t help but turn and follow the interviewer’s gaze. Leaning against the wall in the shadows of the darkened gym was a man with dark hair, black T-shirt, and jeans. He looked up from the phone in his hand, as if hearing his name, and peered in their direction. He was too far away for her to read his expression or see the details of his face, but a jolt of bone-deep recognition went through her. “Oh.”
“Hey, we should invite him to join you for this part since you were both close to the same place at the same time. We’ll get a more accurate timeline that way.”
“What? I mean, no, that’s not—”
“Jim, can you turn off the camera? I think this will be important. Mr. Dorsey,” Daniel called out, “would you mind if I asked you a few questions now? The camera’s off.”
The cameraman went about shutting things down, and Finn pushed away from the wall.
Liv’s heart leapt into her throat and tried to escape. She’d avoided Finn after everything had happened, not just from hurt, but because seeing his face, even on television, would trigger the flashbacks. But she wasn’t that girl anymore. Seeing Finn after all these years shouldn’t concern her. Still, she had the distinct urge to make tracks to the back door. She slid out of the director’s chair she’d been sitting in. “I think I’ve probably given you everything I have to add. I wasn’t in the gym, and my story is really just me cowering in the closet. Not that interesting—”
Her words cut off, her voice dying a quick death, as Finn got closer and some of the studio lights caught him in their glare. The man approaching was nothing like the boy she’d known. The bulky football muscles had streamlined into a harder, leaner package. The smooth face was now dusted with scruff, and the look in his deep-green eyes held no trace of boyish innocence. A thousand things were in those eyes. A thousand things welled up in Liv.
Finn Dorsey had become a man. And a stranger. The only familiar thing was the sharp, undeniable kick of awareness she’d always had anytime the guy was around. Time had only made the effect more potent. Without thinking, her gaze drifted to his hands. Big, capable hands that had once held her. When she’d known him, he’d always worn his football championship ring from junior year. The cool metal used to press against the back of her neck when he kissed her. Now he wore no rings at all. She took a breath, trying to reel in that old, automatic response to him, and smoothed her hands down the sides of her now-wrinkled pencil skirt.
Daniel held out his hand. “Mr. Dorsey, so glad you could make it.”
Finn returned the offered handshake and gave a brief nod. “Not a problem.”
Then, his gaze slid to Liv. His brow wrinkled for a second, but she could tell the moment he realized who she was. Something flickered over his face. A very distinct look. Like she caused him pain. Like she was a bad memory.
Because she was. That was all they were to each other at this point.
She pushed words past her constricted throat. “Hi, Finn.”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Roni wrote her first romance novel at age fifteen when she discovered writing about boys was way easier than actually talking to them. Since then, her flirting skills haven’t improved, but she likes to think her storytelling ability has. She holds a master’s degree in social work and spent years as a mental health counselor, but now she writes full time from her cozy office in Dallas, Texas where she puts her characters on the therapy couch instead. She is a two-time RITA Award winner and a New York Times and USA Todaybestselling author.
SPOTLIGHT TOUR ~ Collision Course (Body Shop Bad Boys #4) by Marie Harte
Posted by Book Loving Pixies
Body Shop Bad Boys #4
by Marie Harte
He’s always had a way with the ladies
She won’t give him the time of day
Sparks fly when two hearts in motion collide.
Florist Joey Reeves is working overtime to stay away from Lou Cortez, the ace mechanic with a reputation for irresistible charm. She’s a single mom with enough on her plate—the last thing she needs is entanglement with the hottest guy in town…
“Well, hello there.”
Joey glanced up and froze. The man who’d been haunting her sleep looked even better in the hard light of day.
“H-hello.” She coughed. The guys who worked at Webster’s Garage all looked larger than life, covered in tattoos, muscles, and that indefinable sense of danger they wore like a second skin. But this guy, the tall, Latin lover with dark-brown eyes and lips made for kissing, had ensnared her.
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Ten minutes and a text later, Joey drove to Becky’s house and planned to indulge in some girl time. Maybe Becky could help her understand her fascination for Lou.
She arrived at Becky’s soon enough. Her friend shared a condo with a teacher friend. As Joey entered, said teacher left with a smile.
“She’s got a date tonight.” Becky motioned to the coffee table, laden with wine, crackers, and cheese. “And apparently now so do I. Dig in.” Becky lowered her voice and said, suggestively, “Welcome to my pad, sweetness. Boom chicka bow bow.”
Joey laughed. “Stop. That only works when I’m the plumber or the delivery guy.”
Becky sighed. “Guess I’ll have to save that for Trent, who’s out of town this weekend. How the hell am I supposed to seduce him when he’s helping his grandmother move?”
“Aw, that’s so nice.”
“Nice ain’t sexy. Gah.” Becky munched on a cracker. “But I’m excited to hang with you. I can’t believe you finally got paroled. So Brandon the criminal is hanging with the other hooligans, eh? Way to dodge that bullet, Joey.”
“Funny.” Joey paused. “Ah, there’s one thing. I can’t stay past eight. I have a…date.”
Becky stared. “Not with sexy Lou again.”
Joey’s silence answered for her.
“Oh my God. Dinner must have gone well the other night. Tell me.”
Joey swallowed. “He was polite, charming. He looked amazing. He’s really built.” She flushed, feeling that “built” inside her all over again. “We talked then walked after dinner. He paid too. And he was so nice, so sweet. We held hands.”
“Romantic.” Becky sighed.
And then last night he bent me over the flower table and made me see stars. Yeah, romantic.
Becky hugged a pillow to her chest, her expression dreamy until her eyes narrowed on Joey’s face. “Why are you blushing so hard? I mean, your face is really pink.” Her eyes widened. “Holy crap. You had sex with him, didn’t you?”
“N-no.” She cleared her throat. “That’s a little personal, don’t you think?”
“Oh my God, you did. You did! Joey Reeves got some lovin’. Hot damn. It’s about friggin’ time!”
Still feeling overheated, Joey glanced up at her friend. “You can’t tell anyone.” She swore. “I can’t believe it happened. It just…I’m still trying to process it.”
“What’s to process? You fell for the magic in his man-wand.” Becky shrugged, as if it was no big thing. “Happens to the best of us. Well, except for me and Trent the Boy Scout,” she grumbled.
Joey was stuck on man-wand. “What did you call it?”
Becky burst out laughing. “If you could see your face. Hey, you should hear half the things they call it. Fuckstick, staff of life, lady’s lollipop. I could go on.”
“Please, don’t.” Joey grimaced.
“I know, right? Man-wand is so much better.” Becky paused. “Is it, Joey? Is it better? Or did you lollipop him? You know, like what we in the know call it—the hand and blow.”
Joey’s face threatened to melt clean off. She had a feeling she could fry eggs on her cheeks. “I can’t believe I’m having this conversation.”
“Me neither.” Becky grinned. “You’re like beet-red right now. Or fire-engine red, maybe. Hey, did you guys remember to wear a ‘raincoat’?” Becky snickered.
“Stop talking, please.”
“Just tell me this. Do you want to do it again? As in, was it any good? Tell me, and I’ll shut up.”
“It was amazing, okay?” Joey growled. “So great I can’t stop thinking about doing it again. And I don’t tend to do well with men and sex.”
“That’s because you live like a nun in the Church of Reeves, presided over by Father Andrew and Sister Amy. God, it’s a wonder you have a kid with all the guilt your parents keep throwing on you. And after eight—”
“—years you’d think they’d let it go.”
“So maybe I was just desperate. It was a one-shot deal, right?” So why am I thinking of being with him again when I know it’s a mistake?
Becky shrugged and ate more crackers and cheese. “I think you should be desperate again. If you want him, have him. You have a right to be happy. Take joy in his man parts. Go forth, just don’t prosper.”
Joey choked on a laugh. “Yes, Mom.”
“Don’t worry. We were safe.” Rather, he was safe. She’d been so far gone she hadn’t thought about protection until it was almost too late, which was just stupid. Granted, she wouldn’t have babies with Lou while on birth control. But she could always chance a disease with an unknown. She’d been so wrapped up in the moment, lost to her body’s needs.
But Lou had thought ahead.
Which put his actions in a different light. Had he expected to have sex with her?
“What’s that look?” Becky asked.
“He was ready for it. Us, I mean.”
Becky looked confused.
“He was prepared.”
“Jesus, Joey. You can say condom and not burn in hell. So he was prepared. Good for him.”
“Who cares why he had the condom? He had it, you had fun. And if you’re lucky, you’ll have more fun tonight.” Becky poured herself some wine. “Have some for me, would you? Because I’m clearly not getting any.” She cocked her head, considering something. “Unless Will’s home.”
Becky laughed. “Nah. Will’s in Italy this month.” She chuckled. “Kidding, kidding. I’m wanting Trent. I am. Really.”
They laughed some more, and when Joey excused herself for the bathroom, a new text popped up. Lou had decided on the place. An address in Rainier Valley, where he’d mentioned he lived.
She didn’t know what to think, so she took care of business and blanked her mind.
She returned to the living room. “He invited me to his place.”
Becky blinked. “You were gone maybe five minutes.”
“He just texted me.”
“To his place?”
“Why not? Is he rapey or something?”
“No.” He’d been a perfect gentleman since she’d known him. And even after sending her to heaven, twice, he’d ended their impromptu session at the flower shop with a hug and by walking her to her car. “No. He’s nice. Sexy. Too—”
“He’s exactly what you need.” Becky nodded. “Give me your phone.”
BLP REVIEW ~ Tracy
Collision Course is the fourth book of the Body Shop Bad Boys and it’s Lou & Joey’s story.
We’ve seen a lot of Lou over the course of the previous books and he’s come across as a real charmer and ladies man. Growing up with a load of female relatives seems to have given our mechanic an insight to how to treat a gal and he has no trouble finding company. Meeting Joey was a game changer for him!
Joey is a great character. Hard working, she’s been abandoned and left by her family after getting into trouble when she was younger but that hasn’t stopped her from trying to make the best life she can for her and her son.
This pair really work together and they have great chemistry and attraction and while quite different – he’s outgoing and open and she’s quiet and reserved – they gel well. I love how Marie Harte develops her characters and that they aren’t perfect – they mess up like everyone else and then have to try and fix things!!
We caught up with the other guys and gals from the series and, if I’m not mistake, met a couple of peeps who we might find out more about in the future… fingers crossed!!
I’m really bummed that this is the last of our garage ‘Bad Boys’ books as this series keeps getting better and I’m hoping that MH either continues on with more books or starts a spin off so we can find out what happens with the other guys we’ve met so far!
For me, this book gets 5 bad boy stars
ABOUT THE SERIES
Body Shop Bad Boys
Meet the Body Shop Bad Boys, a hot new spicy contemporary series featuring tough, dominant men who like to get dirty on and off the job. The reformed bad boys can fix anything, but it’s the women in their lives throwing a monkey-wrench into their hearts.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Caffeine addict, boy referee, and romance aficionado, MARIE HARTE is a confessed bibliophile and devotee of action movies. Whether hiking in Central Oregon, biking around town, or hanging at the local tea shop, she’s constantly plotting to give everyone a happily ever after.
Award-winning author Marie has been writing professionally since 2005. She’s both a NY Times and USA Today bestselling author and has written over 100 books and counting. Marie writes books with heat, humor, and character. She writes independently and for several publishers, to include Sourcebooks and Samhain. Though currently writing contemporary romance, she also writes paranormal and romantic suspense. Before turning to writing full-time, she earned a B.A. in English from Pennsylvania State University and spent several years in the United States Marine Corps as a communications officer.
The Facts According to Marie:
- I’m a mood reader. If I read a book with a bad ending, it throws me into a funk for days.
- If it’s paranormal, I’m digging it.
- I majored in English and have yet to read Jane Austen. Seriously. *I hang my head in shame*
- I’m naturally lazy but perform best under deadlines.
- I’ve fired a 9mm pistol, a Squad Automatic Weapon, an M16A2 rifle, an M203 grenade launcher, and have thrown live grenades. And I loved it!
- Grammar is my rock. I respect those who know when to use their, there, and they’re correctly.
- I’m definitely a night owl.
- Long live the Oxford comma.
- I love books. I’ll read until they bury me, and then I’ll haunt libraries.
- I can’t write to music or television. I need perfect quiet.
PRAISE FOR MARIE HARTE:
“A blazing hot, emotionally intense love story…from an author on the rise.”— Kirkus for A Sure Thing
“This is truly a must read!”— Night Owl Reviews, 5 Stars, Top Pick! for Roadside Assistance
“Readers will swoon at the romantic gestures… in this easy-to-read tale of self love, trust and taking chances.”— RT Book Reviews for Roadside Assistance
McCauley Brothers series:
“Packed with sass, sensuality and heartwarming emotion…an absolute delight!”- Romance Junkies
“Funny, addicting, and full of hot sex scenes.”– Booklist