Thursday, February 26, 2015

Review: Take by Ella Frank

Series: Temptation #2
Release Date: July 8, 2014
Publisher: Ella Frank
Genre: Romance, M/M, Erotic
Source: Purchased
Rating: ★★★★ ½

TAKE – verb: to reach for and hold in one’s hands or get into one’s possession, power or control. 

Logan Mitchell is a man who’s always been more than happy to take what he wants. It’s a philosophy that’s proven lucrative in both his business and personal life, and never was it more apparent than the night he laid eyes on Tate Morrison. After pulling out all the stops and convincing the sexy bartender to give him a try—he’s hooked. 
Now, Logan finds himself in a predicament that demands more from him than a smart-ass answer and his innate ability to walk away when things get too deep. 
He has a choice to make, and it’ll force him to do something he’s never done before—take a chance.

Tate Morrison knows all about taking a chance. He took the biggest one of his life the night he showed up at Logan’s apartment to explore his unexpected reaction to the man. 
Ever since then, he’s thought about little else.
At first he was convinced his attraction was based solely on his body’s curiosity. But the more time he spends with the silver-tongued lawyer, the more Tate realizes that their physical chemistry is only the beginning. 
He’s starting to catch a glimpse of what life with Logan would be like, and it’s one full of excitement and satisfaction—a far cry from what he had in the past with his soon to be ex-wife.

Each man will face their fears as they begin to understand the true meaning of give and take. Their feelings for one another will be tested, as will their very beliefs. But now that they’ve found love where they least expected it, will they be brave enough to reach out and take it?

This book. 

It broke me a little. 

I was so in love with both Logan and Tate coming out of Try. I would not have expected to be able to feel even more for them.  But what Take does is rock the foundation that was built in Try and it was so sad and so sweet and so ... much!

Logan's harder edges get peeled away, we learn his history and how vulnerable he truly is.  I enjoyed getting to see that side of him.  He's not always the self assured man who oozes confidence and sex appeal with every breath.  He's also just a man looking for someone he can trust to truly love him. Just him. Just the way he is.

Living a same sex relationship out in the open can't always be an easy thing.  Especially if you brought up Catholic.  Tate began to come to terms with that in Try but to convincing his family that he is the same person regardless of who he loves, isn't easy and it may mean losing them forever.

Tate becomes a much stronger man in Take.  His decisions begin to settle but then his family rips him apart for them.  That was the hardest thing to read and it quite nearly brought me to tears.  Tate's determination to be who he is and love who he loves made my heart soar and that's not an easy task as my heart is this hard, heavy, tar-like thing. ;)

I could gush about these two for hours but what it really comes down to is this:  Take is a beautiful and sensual story of TRUE LOVE and what it means to risk everything to keep it - your life, your family, your heart, your security...all for love. 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Review: Leaving Amarillo by Casey Quinn

Series:Neon Dreams #1
Release Date: March 17, 2015
Publisher: William Marrow
Genre: New Adult
Source: Copy provided for honest review
Rating: ★★★ ½

Nashville meets New Adult in Neon Dreams, a dramatic, sexy series from bestselling author Caisey Quinn, about a country band’s rocky road to fame—and the ambition, dreams, and love of the people who make the music.

Dixie Lark hasn’t had it easy. She lost her parents in an accident when she was young and grew up in a ramshackle house on a dirt road in Amarillo with her ailing grandparents and overprotective older brother. Thanks to her grandfather, Dixie learned to play a mean fiddle, inspired by the sounds of the greats—Johnny and June, Waylon, and Hank. Her grandfather’s fiddle changed Dixie’s life forever, giving her an outlet for the turmoil of her broken heart and inspiring a daring dream.

Ten years later, Dixie and her brother, Dallas, are creating the music they love and chasing fame with their hot band, Leaving Amarillo. But Dixie isn’t enjoying the ride. All she can think about is Gavin, the band’s tattooed, tortured drummer who she’s loved since they were kids. She knows he feels the connection between them, but he refuses see her as more than his best friend’s little sister.

Convinced that one night with Gavin will get him out of her system, Dixie devises a plan. She doesn’t know that her brother has forbidden Gavin from making a move on her-a promise he swore he’d always keep . . . a promise that once broken will unexpectedly change the future for Dixie, Gavin and the band.

Imagine growing up in love with someone who treats you as nothing more than a little sister.  Imagine touring in a band with that person, seeing them hook up with a new groupie every night, having that right in your face all the time.  Aching for a person that won't touch you even in the friendliest of ways...can you imagine?

That is Dixie's life. She's been in love with Gavin for ten years. But Gavin lives by some BroCode set forth by Dixie's over protective brother, Dallas. He won't screw around with his best friends sister, no matter what kind of connection Dixie knows he feels.

As the band gains some limelight and they hit the road it forces the issue for Dixie.  She can no longer stand by, lips sealed.  She's ready to give Gavin a little shove out of the friend zone.

Dixie is a nineteen year old girl, she left her college scholarship - returning home to help care for her grandfather and to reconnect with the band that holds all her dreams.  She's figuring out who she is, what she wants for her life, who she wants in her life.  I liked Dixie, okay.  I think she has some great qualities, she can roll with the punches, she tries her best to be honest, she is a caring girl.  She's also just lost and insecure enough to question herself and the decisions being made around and for her.

What I really liked about her was her gumption when it came to Gavin. It takes a strong girl to put her heart on the line. To request just one night of honest feelings, come what may.  One night of truth and passion, knowing that moving past that one night could be the hardest thing ever.

I so wanted her to have that same fight in every aspect of her life. So much so that at times, I struggled with her.  Ready to just reach through my Kindle and shake her a little.

Gavin, can just sign me up to be a Gavin groupie. His tender moments with Dixie were enough to make me all swoony. 

I can't say I was the biggest Dallas fan, though I am cautiously hopeful he'll prove to be a bigger person in his book. Which is the next in the series.  He's just kind of an oblivious dick. 

And that leaves me to the end. It's a strange ending. Not strange bad, per say. It leaves you with a small bit of hope that Dixie will find herself and a big sinking stomach over what could happen with Gavin.

Overall, Leaving Amarillo is an interesting story with enough to draw you in and keep you turning the page.  I wasn't fully seated on an emotional roller coaster or shedding any tears, but I was invested and I do want to see what the future holds for not only these main characters but also for some of the secondaries, who caught my attention.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Sneak Peek + Giveaway: Very Twisted Things by Ilsa Madden-Mills

Sneak Peek: Prologue + Chapter 1

Very Twisted Things
A Standalone Briarcrest Academy Novel #3
by New York Times best selling author Ilsa Madden-Mills
Release Date: March 1, 2015

This is a standalone New Adult novel with graphic sex and language.
Introductory price of $2.99 on release day for 24 hours only!

  A sassy violinist who lives next door. An obsessed rock star who watches her through binoculars. And one night when she bares it all. Life will never be the same in Tinseltown. 

Vital Rejects front guy Sebastian Tate never imagined his YouTube music video would go viral, sky-rocketing him to acting success in Hollywood. Okay, maybe he did. After all, he’s a cocky dude who knows he’s hot-as-hell, and it was only a matter of time before his stars aligned.

But life in Tinseltown is never what it seems.

After being cheated on by his ex-lover, his only rule to falling in love is simple: Keep Calm and Don’t Do It. So, spying on his mysterious new neighbor with binoculars seems innocent enough, but quickly escalates into an erotic game between two very unlikely people.

Twenty-year-old Violet St. Lyons is a world-renowned violinist who's lost her mojo on stage. She hides away in a Hollywood mansion, trying to find her way through her twisted past in order to make her future.

He’s the life of the party with girls chasing him down for his autograph. She’s the introvert with a potty mouth who doesn’t even know who he is.

When they meet, stars collide, sparks fly, and clothes come off. Yet, giving his heart to a girl isn’t Sebastian’s plan; falling for a guy who craves attention isn’t Violet’s.

Welcome to Briarcrest Academy—Hollywood style—where sometimes the best things in life are VERY TWISTED THINGS.

~ Prologue ~ 


  “Fairy dust is not real. This I know.” —from the journal of Violet St. Lyons   Boom! I, Violet St. Lyons, who once believed herself the luckiest girl in the world, was born on the same day that the Violette–Sells comet was discovered. My parents, two avid stargazers, said it was a sign of how special I was and promptly named me Violet. They claimed my life had been blessed with fairy dust. At the very least, comet residue. I’d foolishly believed it for eighteen years, until the moment of my death. Which was now. Boom! Another explosion rocked the plane and metal ripped away as a section of the aircraft to my right vanished. Luggage flew through the air. People disappeared. The mom with the baby who’d sat in the aisle across from us—gone. The redheaded flight attendant who’d been collecting trash—gone. Disembodied screams echoed from the surrounding passengers as my own scream took up most of the space in my head. Air sucked at us viciously from the outside as a tornado of people banged around the space and one by one got pulled out into the swirling abyss. I watched, helplessly transfixed, as I sat between my parents, gripping each of their hands as the plane we’d boarded six hours earlier for Dublin spiraled toward the Atlantic Ocean. I was going to die. My mother was already dead, a twisted piece of shrapnel sticking grotesquely from her chest as her head lolled around her neck. Blood had already soaked her shirt, yet I refused to let go of her hand. She’d be okay. We were always okay. We were the St. Lyons family of Manhattan, an icon of old money wealth with deep political ties. Page six of the New York Times featured pictures of us on a monthly basis. We couldn’t die on a plane. Reality dawned as we plummeted. The yellow breathing apparatus dropped and dangled in my face, taunting me with its pointlessness. Fire and black smoke boiled in front of us where the cockpit had been, and my mind recognized that the pilots had to be dead. Just a few minutes ago, they’d come over the intercom and announced that the plane was making its descent into Dublin Airport exactly on schedule. Then the first explosion had gone off. Bits of debris flew around, narrowly missing me. My elderly father grabbed my hand and squeezed, his face drawn back in a horrible grimace. Fear and then horror flickered across his face as he saw Mother, but there was no time to comfort him. Paralyzed in my seat, we spun like a drunken top, and a part of my brain noticed the sun was rising, its pink tinge lending a soft glow, catching the reflection of clouds and making them silver-lined. The rocky coast of Ireland glittered in the distance. Mocking me. We’d been headed there to celebrate my eighteenth birthday. Just then my violin case flew past my head from the overhead compartment and crashed against the wall of the plane. Shards flew. I shuddered and wanted to vomit. God, help us. We were here because of me. Our deaths were my fault. I spared a glance at the diamond promise ring Geoff had given me before we’d left. Would the Mayor of New York’s son go on without me? The air was turbulent yet thin, and my chest tightened as dizziness pulled at me. I resisted. Had to stay awake. Had to be with my dad. I was younger, stronger, faster. My eyes went to the gaping hole in the plane. Had to think ahead. Plan. Water would fill up the plane on impact, ensuring we’d sink rapidly. My fear escalated as the ocean rushed at us, its surface choppy and ominous. I took in a giant breath and braced myself. We hit at an angle, the plane a torpedo as it sliced into the sea. Daddy disappeared, ejected by the impact, and I yanked on my seat belt, unclicking it to go after him. Heart thundering, I sent a final look at my mother. I wanted to take her with me, but she was gone. Water everywhere, bubbling and gurgling as it filled up the plane. Salt water stung my eyes. People floated by, some alive as they floundered for the opening. I kept my gaze off the dead ones. Focus. Get out. Only seconds left. I swam from my seat and fought my way out of the large hole in the plane, lungs exploding. Burning. I’d been under too long. Daddy! I caught a glimpse of his red shirt above me and kicked harder. Up, up, up. Must get up. My arms moved. My legs kicked. Excruciating pain. Ignore it. Almost there. So close that I could see the daylight breaking through the water. The hottest fire I’ve ever known lit in my chest. Scorching. Air. Just want to breathe. Just get to the top. Please. My body rebelled and I inhaled and swallowed water, the burn racing down my throat making it spasm as I tried to cough it out. I struggled but took in more and more, the cold liquid filling my lungs. Dark spots filled my eyes. This was drowning. Exhausted. Done. My body twitched. I grew disoriented. I let go of the fight. My hands floated in front of me. Oblivion. Darkness. No bright lights, no tunnel. No heaven, no mother, no father. No comets. No fairy dust.

~ Chapter 1 ~


Two years later   “She was music with skin.” —Sebastian Tate   I tapped my foot. What was taking her so long? From my backyard patio in the Hollywood Hills, I watched the odd girl next door with a pair of high-powered binoculars. She flicked on her porch lights, and a low whistle came out of me at the sexy red-as-sin robe she wore, its silky material flashing around her long legs as she moved around her patio. Her hair was down, too. This was new. Where were the usual yoga pants? The ponytail? She looked like she knew someone watched, but that was impossible since our outside lights were off. Even the light from the moon hit our house at such an angle that she shouldn’t be able to see us just by glancing over. She’d need a high-powered lens to know I was here. Usually she played facing her rose garden, but this time she walked to the right side of her patio, which faced us. Weird. But she didn’t play. She just stood there without moving. Staring toward our house. Uneasiness went over me. What was she doing? Could she see me? As if it were a fragile bird, she positioned the violin under her chin and began playing, arms bent and wrist poised, making the most exquisite sounds. And I don’t mean classical like Beethoven or Mozart; I mean body-thrashing, blood-thumping, hard-as-hell music that had me rooted to the ground, like she’d slapped iron chains on me. Dark and seductive notes rose up in the air, and I got jacked up, recognizing a Led Zeppelin song, only she’d ripped its guts out and twisted it into something electric. She pushed the bow hard, upping the tempo abruptly, her movements controlled yet wild. My pulse kicked up and my eyes lingered, taking in the slightly parted toned legs and the way her breasts bounced as she jerked her arms to manipulate the strings. Her body arched forward in a curve, seeming as if she might break into a million pieces before she finished the piece or climaxed first. Then, her robe slipped off her right shoulder, exposing part of her breast. Creamy and full, it quivered, vibrating as she moved her arms. Her rosy nipple teased me, slipping in and out of the folds of the material, erect from the cool mountain air and deliciously bitable. I pictured my mouth there, sucking, my fingers plucking, strumming her like my guitar until she begged me to— Stop, I told myself just as an appreciative groan came out. Whoever Violin Girl was, she didn’t deserve me lusting after her while she was pouring her heart out with music. I zoomed in as far as the binoculars would go, watching her surrender to the music as she bent and swayed from side to side with her eyes closed, black lashes like fans on her cheeks. Every molecule in my body focused on her, hanging on to each note she pulled from her instrument. She finished and kept her head bowed for the longest time, perhaps letting the emotion wash over her like it had me. Then, she bowed to the banana trees and gnomes in her garden, waving her hands in a flourish as she rose. The entire event was surreal, yet poignant as fucking poetry. I let out a deep breath I didn’t even realize I’d been holding. Who the hell plays Stairway to Heaven with a violin? She did. Bam! She snapped her head up, her eyes lasering in on mine, making every hair on my body stand at attention. And then … Standing there in the moonlight, she untied her robe and spread apart the sides ever so slightly, her movements seeming almost hesitant, as if she’d had to work herself up. Unfamiliar jealousy hit me and I panned out and checked the rest of the patio, expecting to see a lover. Whoever it was, I wanted to rip him apart piece by piece. And didn’t that thought surprise me. My gaze searched her patio, the backyard, her upstairs balcony. Nothing. No one. She flicked her dark hair back and stroked the lapels of the robe, her fingers lingering over the lacy material. Suddenly the evening smacked of something more than just music. Her arms moved back and forth across the front, opening the robe halfway and then closing it as if she couldn’t make up her mind. My eyes went up, trying to read her face. Still as a statue, the only movement was her mouth as it trembled, her full upper lip resting against the pouty lower one. Tears ran down her face, but they seemed more of a defiant act, her jaw tightly set, her shoulders hunched inward as if she’d held it in too long and was giving in, but not without a fight. Violin Girl was trapped in a cage of darkness. It still didn’t stop me from holding my breath, silently begging her to bare herself to me. She’d already laid bare her music. Part of me needed the rest of her. She jerked the robe closed, making me groan in disappointment. And then she did something completely crazy. The lonely girl next door flipped me the bird.  

© Ilsa Madden-Mills 2015 Very Twisted Things

New York Times and USA Today best selling author Ilsa Madden-Mills writes about strong heroines and sexy alpha males that sometimes you just want to slap.   She spends her days with two small kids, one neurotic cat, and one husband. She collects magnets and rarely cooks except to bake her own pretzels.   When she's not crafting a story, you can find her drinking too much Diet Coke, jamming out to Pink, or checking on her carefully maintained chocolate stash.   She loves to hear from readers and fellow authors.

  VTT Giveaway

Makeup Monday #3: Kaleidoscope Hearts by Claire Contreras + Z Palette

Makeup Monday is a weekly feature on Black Heart Reviews where we combine two of our favorites things: books and makeup! Hope you enjoy, and feel free to join in by posting your makeup regiment or beauty products on Monday via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter using #MakeupMonday!

Amazon  |  B&N  |  Goodreads

He was my older brother's best friend.

He was never supposed to be mine.

I thought we would get it out of our system and move on.

One of us did.

One of us left.

Now he's back, looking at me like he wants to devour me. And all those feelings I'd turned into anger are brewing into something else, something that terrifies me.

He broke my heart last time.

This time he'll obliterate it.

A few years ago, while I was cleaning out my vanity, I realized just how unorganized and cluttered my eyeshadow collection had become. I had a ton of their single eyeshadows thrown in drawers and it was difficult to find one particular color when it was lost in a sea of 50+ eyeshadow pots. 

I needed to find a way to safely store them but also keep them organized to where it was easy for me to find a certain eyeshadow when I needed it. Basically, I needed something that would simplify, and organize my makeup, and get rid of all the bulky packaging most of my shadows came in. After doing a bit of Googling and research, I came upon Z Palettes

Z Palettes are empty magnetic makeup palettes with a clear window that can hold all of your favorite makeup in one easy place.  You can place any brand of products in the Z Palette to create your own kaleidoscope of eyeshadows, blushes, bronzers or powders. 

Z Palettes make it so much easier for me to see all of my MAC single shadows in an easy convenient place. I've been able to get rid of those bulky and pesky packaging from Urban Decay's Book of Shadows collection, and make it easy for me to create palettes of different products for when I'm trying to same space in my travel makeup bag. 

Z Palettes come in an array of colors and sizes that will fit any of your favorite makeup products. Whether you want to organize, customize or simplify your makeup collection, Z Palettes are definitely the way to go!

Shop for your own Z PALETTE Here
Shop Z PALETTE for Sephora Here

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Rag Time with Uncle Neal & Jeff #5: Taut by JA Huss

**Rag Time with Uncle Neal and Jeff is a monthly feature where two drunk dudes read mommy porn. All for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy!**

Welcome to Rag Time with Uncle Neal and Jeff!  This is what happens at Ali's house when boys are left unattended, with beer and smut.  This first video was sent to us as a gift one night when we were out of town. They were tipsy and Ali had a paperback laying there, curiosity got the better of them.

It was so well received that the boys have agreed to continue the hijinx by reading an excerpt (of Black Heart Reviews choosing) every month.  Got a particular excerpt you'd like to see them read? Let us know! ;)

Ford Aston is known for many things. Being an emotionless, messed up bastard, a freakishly smart social outcast, and a cold, domineering master who keeps "pets" instead of girlfriends.

And after Rook broke his heart, he plans to keep it that way.

Ashleigh is known for nothing, and that's exactly what she's got going for her. She's broke, stranded in the mountains with a three month old baby, and Ford Aston is screwing with her head.

Big. Time.

And she plans to mess with his right back.

It's a coy game at first, filled with flirting, and innuendo--but Ford soon realizes something is not quite right with Ashleigh. In fact, something is seriously, seriously wrong and the closer they get to their final destination, the closer Ford gets to the truth.

One night of devastation, self-loathing, and emptiness turns into the best thing that ever happened to Ford Aston. But one day of in-your-face reality threatens Ashleigh's whole existence.

Ford first appears in Rook and Ronin #2, Manic. He has a bigger role in Panic, R&R #3, and then he has a novella, called SLACK. This TAUT book is only FORD. It's not really part of the R&R series, as that plot has all been sidelined for this one romance book.

 JA Huss is the author of the Amazon bestselling Rook and Ronin series, the epic science fiction I Am Just Junco series, and hundreds of kid-friendly science books in subjects such as biology, physics, anatomy and physiology, astronomy, and forensics. She has an undergraduate degree in equine science and a master’s degree in forensic toxicology. She has never taken a creative writing class and she hopes she never will.

Friday, February 20, 2015

WTF Friday #10: Strange Sex Toys

**WTF Friday is a weekly feature here at Black Heart, where we explore the stranger side of life.  It will not always be suitable for ages under 18, for work or for people lacking a sense of humor.  This is all in the name of entertainment, don't take it too seriously.**

Today, we take a look at the stranger side of sex toys. All the things you never wanted to know existed! Sorry (no, we're not) for corrupting your minds.

First up  - The Area 51 Love Doll:  I'd be willing to bet this baby was designed by some Total Recall fan who really wanted to know what a three breasted (or any woman, for that matter) felt like.  Sadly, this purple sex goddess has been discontinued, so she may be tricky to find and I really doubt you would want to pick up a pre-owned version. *shivers* You gotta love the tag line on this package though, right?

This next one was going to just be The Bible Thumper...but I can't stop there. Divine Interventions has an entire line of religious toys, all fairly equally disturbing.  I don't have the words..I can' anything but giggle. A lot. This is just so not right!

 Baby Jesus Butt Plug - He comes in multiple colors, if that's what is important to you.

Divine Interventions also has Buddha's Delight, The Grimm Reaper, The Virgin Mary and many others, as well as some non-denominational toys,  we wont' picture here.

Next up - the Inflatable Vibrating Sex Chair.  I would try to come up with something quippy about this but LoveHoney says it best with their product description:

Bouncy, pink, inflatable fun. This blow-up sex furniture holds a multispeed vibrator that will make you quiver with delight. The perfect solution for those looking for a closer-to-sex experience or want their hands kept free for other things, like sudoku.

On to the Sqweel Go! I've heard some men just won't go down, thankfully not one I've ever met...but I'm sure they exist.  Is your man one? Well, have no fear - the Sqweel Go has you covered with not one tongue, but ten. You'll never leave your house again. 

This one is perfect for the My Little Pony fans...yes, there is a lot wrong with that statement.  But, hey, we don't judge here.  You go on with your bad self freaky deaky fantasies.  We'll love you just the same! Crystal Delights offers up a few tails, bunny, silver fox and the Crystal Minx Detachable Pony Tail.  Available in 12 colors, shown here in Primary 5 color. 

Also available at Crystal Delights is the King JCobra Gentlemen's Ring.  Really, the strangest thing about this one is the price tag.  It's $15,000.  Wonder what their return policy is if you don't like it. 

This Thigh Harness is offered up Babeland.  Hmmm... That's all I got.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Review: Libertine (Act 1) by Blair Lacy

Series: Libertine
Release Date: January 21, 2015
Publisher: Blair Lacy
Genre: Erotica
Source: Copy provided for honest review
Rating: ★★★ (ish)

I wasn’t made for love.
I was made for sex.
And I must not ever forget that.
Opal has been used and abused, but is determined to turn a new chapter in her life. Escaping from her abusive ex took her all the courage she had, but when he threatens to return and torment her again, she fears for her own life ... Meeting a tall, dark and deadly stranger might just be her salvation - or will it doom her? 

Libertine is a dark romance novel with erotica and mystery elements. Provocative, dark & twisted ... a story that will play with your mind, body and soul.

Potential.  That's what this little novelette, serial...whatever it is, has. Potential.

Opal has had a rough time.  Falling in love with the wrong man, placing all her trust in him only for it to be shattered has left her a shell of what she once was.

She has nothing.  Nothing but herself.  Her body.  Which she'll sell to survive.  Survive is all she knows how to do.

It's attention, or lack there of, from a stranger that has her thinking maybe there is more life out there for her.  But when you've been beaten down so thoroughly and have little self worth left, can you trust anyone to really put you back together...make you whole...make you happy? Furthermore, what can you really offer them?

Opal is a head trip.  Which was part of the story I enjoyed.  It's dark and prosy inside her brain.  It was also just a bit of a mess.  While I understand Opal's thoughts could very well be scattered, it felt less like a character trait and more like a writing flaw.  Yet, I could still slightly feel the disfunction, the loneliness, the heartache seeping through a bit. 

I think that with the right care, Libertine could be cleaned up to be near perfection for the dark romance genre.  It's just not quite there yet.  But it has POTENTIAL! I'll eagerly wait 'for the next episode' (that's Dr. Dre you hear) in the hopes that it fulfills a little more of what I need.

Reveal: One to Save by Tia Louise

ONE TO SAVE (One to Hold, #6)
(Derek & Melissa)
By Tia Louise
Coming March 26, 2015! #SaveDerek
Cover Design by Steven Novak
Photography by Lauren Perry, Perrywinkle Photography


Some threats come at you as friendly fire. Some threats take away everything. Family won’t let you go down without a fight. The Secret isn’t as secure as Derek’s team originally thought it was, and a person on the inside of Alexander-Knight is set on exposing him, breaking him, and taking away all he holds dear. Refusing to let anyone suffer for his crimes, Derek takes matters into his own hands. He’s exposed, he’s defenseless, but his friends are determined to save him. 

 A STAND-ALONE, ONE TO HOLD NOVEL. Adult Contemporary Romance: Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.    
Pre-Order ONE TO SAVE Today!

Amazon | iTunes | Google Play | Kobo | Are | Nook: *coming March 26!


One to Save
©Tia Louise
*unedited draft, subject to change*
  Chapter 1: Secrets Melissa In the cool darkness of the semi-crowded bar, I study the glass in front of me and consider my journey, how many steps I’ve taken in the last two years, how far I’ve come. Memories of my old life fade like smoke in a glass. The shame that held me so tightly now dances at the edges of my mind like the whisper of a bad dream, a flicker of shadows that no longer make sense in my world. Young women in shiny slip dresses twist and laugh on the dance floor, but instead of resentment, my lips curl into a smile. My old self—cynical, bitter, defeated—is a memory I have to work hard to recall. These days I could dance all night with them, but I’d rather spend my energy engaged in other activities. The slim glass holds a pale amber liquid, and I can’t resist taking a sip. An involuntary wince pinches my eyes as I put it down. Seven and seven. Refreshing citrus dragged down by the heavy undertone of whiskey. So gross. Sliding my palms over my thighs, I realize my outfit isn’t much different from those of the girls on the dance floor. The deep red silk is fitted at my waist, and drapes loosely over my torso. My long dark hair is swept over one shoulder revealing a thin spaghetti strap. I lightly touch the delicate gold chain around my neck leading to the floating heart pendant that sits between my collarbones, and light glances off the thick gold cuff on my wrist. Unlike that night, I’m alone. My best friend Elaine is miles away with her new husband, most likely indulging in that blissful honeymoon period of early marriage. Make that, most certainly indulging. I know those two well. No, I came by myself to the bar in Princeton after finishing my business with a client in town. My infant son is in Wilmington, spending the weekend with his grandmother. Studying my hands, I admire the deep blue sapphire ring on my finger, but I have no wedding band. At thirty-two, I’m an unmarried mother of a beautiful little boy, and I wouldn’t change a thing… Yet. The tiny silver scar at my hairline reminds me of what a bad marriage looks like, and with my successful marketing business and the gorgeous cottage at the beach I own, I’m satisfied with my life. Calm, not desperate. I’ll take my next steps deliberately, with confidence. All these thoughts preoccupy my mind when I blink up and catch him watching me from across the square-shaped bar. Blue eyes, strikingly blue because of the way they stand out beneath his dark brow, coupled with collar-length thick dark hair. He’s massive, at least six-two, and elegantly dressed with a thick stainless watch on his wrist. I can spot his type a mile away—rich, powerful, accustomed to getting what he wants. I can’t deny the hum his gaze sets off under my skin. I know what he wants. Catching my lip in my teeth to stop my grin, I also know what I want, and it’s no coincidence I happened to look up at that exact moment to meet his stare. Still, I’ll make him work for it. He starts to move, his eyes never leaving mine. I don’t look away either. Thick cords of muscle ripple beneath the thin black sweater he wears as he glides past the oblivious patrons talking and laughing. Some are more animated than others, waving their arms and putting their drinks in peril. Yellow lights hidden in the recesses above the bar illuminate rows of liquor bottles in all colors and shapes. Glasses hanging upside down above also catch the flickering light. It’s a raucous atmosphere, but this man and I are in our own secret place of longing and desire. As he rounds the final corner, and I see him in full, my breath quickens. My eyes drift from his broad shoulders to his narrow waist, grey slacks and black shoes, then back up just as he reaches me. A close beard shadows his face, and the muscles low in my pelvis tighten at the thought of how it feels brushing the soft skin of my inner thighs… #SaveDerek #March26  

One to Hold (Derek & Melissa), 2013
One to Keep (Patrick & Elaine), 2014
One to Protect (Derek & Melissa), 2014
One to Love (Kenny & Slayde), 2014
One to Leave (Stuart & Mariska), Dec. 29, 2014
One to Save (Derek & Melissa), coming March 26, 2015!
One to Chase (Amy & Marcus), coming May 2015!

Tia Louise is the Amazon and International Bestselling author of the ONE TO HOLD series. From "Readers' Choice" nominations, to picking up USA Today "Happily Ever After" nods, to winning a 2014 "Lady Boner Award" (LOL!), nothing makes her happier than communicating with fans and weaving new tales into the Alexander-Knight world of stories. A former journalist, Louise lives in the center of the USA with her lovely family and one grumpy cat. There, she dreams up stories she hopes are engaging, hot, and sexy, and that cause readers rethink common public locations...  

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