Thursday, November 12, 2015

Review: Whisper If You Need Me

Dina Silver is known for her women's fiction novels but she has recently released her first YA book, Whisper if You Need Me. The contemporary novel was an absolute delight to read and Sarah Dessen fans should take note.

Here's the synopsis:
A strong-willed yet vulnerable young beauty, Julia Pearl is sixteen years old when she’s sent away to summer camp for the first time. Julia’s father and stepmother are convinced that time away from home will be good for Julia, hoping it will restore the confidence she lost when her mother disappeared five years earlier.
Released from the emotional constraints of her new family and the ugly reputation her mother left behind, Julia finds herself reluctantly tossed into the free-spirited and often drama-infused world of overnight camp—where she quickly falls for an intensely charismatic counselor named Jack Dempsey, a nineteen-year-old college student who will prove to save her life in more ways than one.
Rich with humor and poignancy, Whisper If You Need Me is a timeless story that will remind readers of the strength of friendship, the unwavering devotion of family, and ultimately, the power of young love.
My favourite thing about Sarah Dessen novels (yes, I know this isn't a review about one of her books...bear with me here) is that the story is about more than just romance. Sometimes romance doesn't even really factor into the story. The point of the novel is to watch the heroine, a teenage girl, find her way in the world. There is drama, usually of the family sort but not always, and a little something special that hooks you and drags you, quite happily, into the story. Dina Silver has found that little something with her new book. Julia has a lot of stuff to work through...why her mom left, being "forced" to go to summer camp, having a new step-mother and step-siblings, plus a severe nut allergy. And for those, like me, who enjoy the swooning, the first kisses, and the romance, there's some of that too.

The setting played such a huge part in this novel. I never went to summer camp as a kid (the closest I got was a few day school trip to a nearby camp. I think I've blocked most of it out.) so there's a bit of a novelty factor for me. But I think summer camp is perfect for a contemporary YA novel and allows for a bunch of high school kids (and therefore a bunch of drama and angst) to get together somewhere that isn't school. 

The only little teeny thing that bugged me has to do with the age of the characters. Julia is 16, Jack is 19. I just could not see how a guy who's just finished his first year of college could want to date a high school. I wish Julia had been going into grade 12 instead of 11...I think that would have eased my mind so much more. But really...that was the single thing I had an issue with in this novel.

That being said...oh, the feels I had reading about Julia and Jack. I think the fact that he was older did help because he was able to help her learn to deal with, well, life. And their first kiss? Talk about swooning. It was almost instalove but because they weren't allowed to be together (ooh, forbidden love to boot!) they had the chance to build a friendship first. 

Finally, I liked that Julia was able to make some new friends while at camp. She has to deal with Mean Girls (oh my god, these girls were awful) but between Jack and her new friends, she's able to (usually) ignore the taunts and ridiculous comments and emerge on the other side even stronger than before. 

I could not stop reading Whisper If You Need Me. Dina Silver sucked me in with her riveting, well written story. This is one that all contemporary YA fans will enjoy, especially those who like their heroines strong and relateable. 

*An advanced eARC was provided by the author in exchange for review consideration. All opinions are honest and my own.*

Monday, November 9, 2015

Review: November 9

I have a confession to make: I hadn't actually read any of Colleen Hoover's books before November 9 (out tomorrow...yep, on November 10th). This is even more ridiculous when I tell you that I've met her...twice. I've always wanted to. I own a few of her books but I just haven't read them yet. An ARC of this one fell in my lap, though, so I decided I'd take the plunge and finally read a CoHo book. And I did it in one day!

Here's the synopsis:
Beloved #1 New York Times bestselling author Colleen Hoover returns with an unforgettable love story between a writer and his unexpected muse.
Fallon meets Ben, an aspiring novelist, the day before her scheduled cross-country move. Their untimely attraction leads them to spend Fallon’s last day in L.A. together, and her eventful life becomes the creative inspiration Ben has always sought for his novel. Over time and amidst the various relationships and tribulations of their own separate lives, they continue to meet on the same date every year. Until one day Fallon becomes unsure if Ben has been telling her the truth or fabricating a perfect reality for the sake of the ultimate plot twist.
Oh, man. Guys. I couldn't put this book down. It's heart-wrenching and gut-wrenching and emotional and so addictive. You know right off the bat that Fallon has had a pretty tough couple of years. And there's a hint that Ben's life isn't quite as it seems (though you kind of forget about that and then when you do find out what happened it's a bit of a slap in the face). I loved Fallon and Ben's relationship...and hated it all at the same time. I so admired them for approaching it in the way they did but all I could think was, "JUST BE TOGETHER, PLEASE!" As heartbreaking as it sometimes was, I knew it was for the best. I really enjoyed seeing how they grew as characters and people over the course of the November 9ths. 

I loved the fact that Ben was a writer. I feel like there are not enough writer characters out there, especially in New Adult. They're not usually males, either, at least in the books I tend to read. So not only did I like what Ben wanted to do for a living but I also enjoyed that writing and books played such a large part in the novel's plot. Particularly romance novels! They just don't get the credit they deserve and kudos to Ben for reading so many romances.

What's holding me back from giving this one a full, wholehearted, flailing five star review is the ending. I didn't see the twist coming, thankfully, but I found it too similar to a twist in another New Adult novel (I'm not telling you which one because then you'll figure out the twist and that would be wrong). The flow was a little thrown off as well and I don't know if I really got the conclusion I wanted.

Overall though, I really liked November 9. I'm interested to see what longtime Colleen Hoover fans have to say about it but this newbie was pleased. I tore through the story and enjoyed reading about two very flawed but very relateable characters. Best book ever? No, not really. But it did exactly what I needed it to: keep me 100% invested in the story and turning the pages as fast as I could to find out what happened next.

*An ARC of this novel was provided by Simon & Schuster Canada in exchange for review consideration. All opinions are honest and my own.*

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Happy Blogaversary to ME!

That's right, my friends. Today is the day Books Etc. turns FIVE! I cannot believe I've been writing this blog for five years now. It seems like just yesterday I put this Blogger blog together. (Yep. Five years in and I'm still using Blogger...once I'm back from vacation I plan on changing that. I hope.)

SO many amazing things have happened over the past five years. I have made new friends (IRL and online), met more authors than I ever imagined possible (including a few of my all time favourites), read way more books than a normal person should (but I'm not normal), interned at Random House of Canada and Project Bookmark Canada, helped plan a chick lit author event, and oh so much more. (You can read about my second blogaversary here, third here, and fourth here.)

This past year was really hard for me, particularly in the career department (which directly relates to how much money I have and therefore determines everything else I can - or, more frequently, can't - do). My blog really took a hit and it's only been in the past few months that I've gotten back into the swing of things. I'm still getting there but one of the things that really helped was finally making it to BEA and the back-from-hiatus Ontario Book Blogger meet up.

I'm still learning as a blogger (and a human!) and I'm hoping for even more change and amazing things over the next year.

Now, a couple of bloggers - Jaime of Two Chicks on Books and Amber of Me, My Shelf, and I - are both celebrating their five year blogaversaries as well and wanted to open up the celebrations to anyone else who is in the five year cllub. The start of the Fantastic Fives celebration starts TODAY and because the start date falls on my actual blogaversary, they granted me the first spot. How sweet is that?

Fantastic Fives Interview Questions

Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I'm a 28 year old, tall (6'), Canadian (I live about 20 minutes away from Niagara Falls) female. I'm obsessed with books (duh), tea (someone may need to stage an intervention and ban me from David's Tea), and my bunny (her name is Tonks…yep, like the Harry Potter character). I've lived in enough places to have collected four different library cards. I have a background in communications, events, and fundraising and I'm still trying to figure out what I want to do when I grow up.

How did you get started blogging?
The short answer is I just started because I wanted to talk about books. The longer answer includes a previous knowledge of blogging thanks to my fourth year seminar class in university (my final assignment was writing a blog…it's still live if you want to check it out!) and finding a few blogs online thanks to Twitter (I'm pretty sure Chick Lit Plus was the first blog I fell in love with).

How did you pick the name for your blog?
I hardly remember! I think I settled on it because I knew it wouldn't strictly be about books.

If you could go back in time and tell your newbie blogger self one thing what would it be?
Pick a better url, haha! But also to just do your thing and not worry about what anyone else is reading or how they're blogging. It took  me awhile to learn that.

What have you learned in your five years of blogging?
The book community can be really great and welcoming but there are catty/cliquey moments that make me feel like I'm back in high school. So, I've learned to ignore those moments and focus on the good, which includes the amazing friends I've made and the insane opportunities I've been given. I've also learned way more about the publishing process which has been eye opening and so much fun.

What was the first ARC or book you ever received from a publisher?
It wasn't an ARC but the first book I received was A Scottish Ferry Tale and it was part of a blog tour (review is here if your interest is piqued!). I adored it! It took time though. I didn't get it until almost six months after starting my blog.  

When you’re not reading or blogging, what can we find you doing?
Not reading…I don't understand…Kidding! I'm a pretty average girl. If I don’t have my nose in a book, I'm either hanging out with my boyfriend or friends, likely watching TV shows, movies, baseball or the odd hockey game, or my whackadoodle rabbit act like the crazy nut she is. I could also be at the gym. The whole fitnessing thing is kind of recent (even though I played basketball many moons ago) since I screwed up my back earlier in 2015 and working out and getting stronger has helped immensely.

I couldn't NOT share a pic of Tonks (there are many more
on Instagram and Twitter, promise.)
The Fives

Five Favourite Books
Harry Potter (Ugh. FINE! Prisoner ofAzkaban) (review)
Anne of Green Gables (though I might love Anne of the Island more)
This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen (review)
Arranged by Catherine McKenzie (review)
Blogger Girl by Meredith Schorr (review)

Five Favourite Book Boyfriends
Marcus Flutie from Megan McCafferty's Jessica Darling series (I think he was my first book boyfriend)
Brook from Laura Chapman's First & Goal
Dex from Sarah Dessen's This Lullaby (review)
Any of the three brothers from Nora Roberts' Inn Boonsboro series (review of book one and book three)
Gilbert Blythe from Anne of Green Gables (actually, he may have been my first book boyfriend but I don't think I realized it at the time. I was, like, 10 when I first read it.)

Five Favourite Book Quotes
"'All life's lessons are not learned at college,' she thought. 'Life teaches them everywhere.'" 
Anne of the Island

"As he read, I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly and then all at once."
I may have my issues with John Green but I adore this quote from The Fault in Our Stars.

"And now, Harry, let us step out into the night and pursue that flighty temptress, adventure." 
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

“I am simply a 'book drunkard.' Books have the same irresistible temptation for me that liquor has for its devotee. I cannot withstand them.”
Lucy Maud Montgomery (I actually have a bracelet with this engraved on it)

“The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.”
Jane Austen

Five Blogging Tips For New Bloggers
1. Don't say yes to every review request.
2. Be polite and courteous to authors and publishers. This may be a hobby but you should conduct yourself in a professional manner. They don't have to send you books so make them want to work with you. Review books when you say you will! (I'm still working on this. So many books, so little time.)
3. Interact with other bloggers! It's an amazing community. And we won't bite, promise. (Er…except for the crazy chick I heard about at a past BEA.)
4. Schedule. You don't want to miss reviews/promos/NetGalley archive date because you forgot to write it down. It will also help you decide what to read next.
5. Have fun! Your blog is just that: yours. Give it personality! Write reviews how you want to write them and don't worry if you're doing it "right" because right is the way that makes you happiest.

Five Blogs You Want The World To Know About – Canadian (er...Ontario) Edition!
1. Browsing Bookshelves (Natalie is now one of my closest friends and we met because of blogging!)
4. Ms Lady Critic (she started blogging and is now focusing on booktubing)

Now for even more fun...I've decided I WILL do a giveaway this year. I don't exactly have the money (working part time is such a delight) BUT the book community has done so much for me so I want to give something back. Here's a bit of fine print: I'm away on vacation right now so I have no idea if the Rafflecopter will even decide to work. And because I'm going away well in advance of this post going live and have a ton of other things to think's a bit of a generic giveaway. I'll work out with the winner where the book will come from and, depending on where the winner lives, I might send a few little extra fun things. So make sure you leave a way for me to contact you in the blog post comment. If, for some reason, Rafflecopter doesn't work, leave a comment for me telling me what one of your favourite books is and I'll do a manual giveaway on the 29th. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don't forget to check out the other blogs that are turning five this year!
November 9 Fiktshun
November 10 Two Chicks On Books
November 11 Me, My Shelf and I
November 12 Bewitched Bookworms
November 13 Novel Novice
November 14 Book Angel Booktopia
November 15 Maer Wilson
November 17 YA Book Shelf
November 19 Bookish Lifestyle
November 20 Once Upon A Twilight
November 21 Annette's Book Spot
November 22 Bookaholics Anonymous
November 23 Deal Sharing Aunt 

Friday, November 6, 2015

Review: The Lake House

It was almost exactly five years ago that I read The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton. I fell head over heels in love and I told everyone and their mother they needed to read it too. Seriously...I worked at Coles bookstore the Christmas it became popular in Canada and I hand-sold it to anyone looking for a gift for the woman in their life. But I have a confession to make: that was the first and last Kate Morton book I read. I think I had such a fear of her subsequent books not living up to my expectations that I didn't make the time to read her others. Until The Lake House . And, boy, am I glad I agreed to review this one and be part of Simon & Schuster's Read-a-Thon!

I'm doing my read-a-thon post a little differently than the others for a few reasons...first, I'm on vacation right now and had to have this scheduled a week ago. This means that I can't really discuss the book with you as much as I'd like. Also, I'm in charge of the final part of the novel and it seems only fair to give my thoughts before asking questions about the whole book!

Here's the synopsis:
Living on her family’s idyllic lakeside estate in Cornwall, England, Alice Edevane is a bright, inquisitive, innocent, and precociously talented sixteen-year-old who loves to write stories. But the mysteries she pens are no match for the one her family is about to endure…
One midsummer’s eve, after a beautiful party drawing hundreds of guests to the estate has ended, the Edevanes discover that their youngest child, eleven-month-old Theo, has vanished without a trace. What follows is a tragedy that tears the family apart in ways they never imagined.
Decades later, Alice is living in London, having enjoyed a long successful career as an author. Theo’s case has never been solved, though Alice still harbors a suspicion as to the culprit. Miles away, Sadie Sparrow, a young detective in the London police force, is staying at her grandfather’s house in Cornwall. While out walking one day, she stumbles upon the old estate—now crumbling and covered with vines, clearly abandoned long ago. Her curiosity is sparked, setting off a series of events that will bring her and Alice together and reveal shocking truths about a past long gone...yet more present than ever.
A lush, atmospheric tale of intertwined destinies, this latest novel from a masterful storyteller is an enthralling, thoroughly satisfying read.
I'm going to echo the synopsis: Morton is a fantastic storyteller. She's able to weave together such a compelling story. It makes the reader want to read the book from start to finish in one sitting. (I'd be damn impressed if you read it in one sitting...this is a hefty book at about 400 pages.) Morton sucks you in with a multi-layered and complex story. The Lake House takes place in various decades (mostly the 1930s and 2000s) and in different towns (London and Cornwall). It's a third person narrative which allows for viewpoints from all sorts of characters. That all sounds confusing, doesn't it? But, in Morton's more than capable hands, it completely works.

I love that this novel has a mystery at its core and clues are shared sparingly throughout the novel. I kept thinking that maybe I had things figured out about Theo's disappearance, only to realize I was way off base. I didn't feel too bad though because the characters had no idea what happened either and everyone seemed to think they had a hand in the event. There was a lot of confusion that needed to be cleared up before things started to make sense and I loved the moments when things started to fall into place. I actually had a "HOLY CRAP" light bulb moment that was almost I felt pretty proud of myself.

Final (random) side note: I started reading the book on a Tuesday. I watch the TV show Castle, which is on Monday nights, so when I began the novel I, for some reason, kept picturing Sadie as Stana Katic, the actress who plays Detective Beckett. There's no real reason for this link (it wasn't based on what Sadie was supposed to look like!) or for sharing but I thought it'd be fun to include part of my reading experience :)

Kate Morton's latest novel is a total winner for me. The Lake House will be one I recommend to many people once again this holiday season - and beyond. It's an amazing story that's written so incredibly well. The mystery will suck you in and the characters will keep you even more invested. If you've read Morton before: read this book. If you like historical fiction: read this book. Just read this book.

Now...for the read-a-thon discussion questions! I'm going to try to avoid spoilers but I'm talking about the end of a novel - and a mystery to boot - so proceed with caution!

Questions for Chapters 28-35

There are two mysteries in this book. Sadie eventually becomes, one could say, obsessed with both and works hard to find out what happened to Theo and Maggie. Did you ever doubt Sadie or start to wonder if she was an unreliable character?

A lot of pain and heartache could have been avoided if many of the characters had been open with each other from the start. Why do you think it was so hard for everyone to be honest? Would the close knit family relationships have anything to do with it?

Did you see the ending, regarding both Theo and Maggie, coming? Would it have mattered to you if either outcome had been unhappy or happy? What about the other, smaller, mysteries? Were you shocked by any of the revelations?

Don't forget to check out the prior readathon posts!

Chapters 1-9: Lost in a Great Book

Chapters 10-18: Be Nice or Leave.

Chapters 19-27: Ms. Bibliophile

*An ARC of this novel was provided by Simon & Schuster Canada for the purpose of the read-a-thon and for review consideration. All opinions are honest and my own.*

Friday, October 30, 2015

Review: Sleeping with the Enemy

I expected Sleeping with the Enemy to be your typical romance novel. In a way, Tracy Solheim's latest book fit that bill. But there's more to it than a former couple being thrust together once again many years later (though that's one of my favourite tropes). There's another factor in play in this novel...someone intent on ruining the lives of these characters. That element added something extra to the story and made me like it that much more.

Here's the synopsis:
Dot-com millionaire Jay McManus is discovering that owning a pro football team like the Baltimore Blaze isn’t easy. An anonymous blogger is out to destroy his reputation, and now his team is being sued by its own cheerleaders. If Jay’s not careful, he could lose big—and not just financially.
Bridgett Janik’s brother may play for the Baltimore Blaze, but she’s not thrilled to be defending Jay McManus, the man who broke her heart. It’s bad enough she has to mingle with Jay during games, but working beside her former lover may be too much for her body—and her heart—to resist.
Jay’s determined not to let Bridgett slip away from him a second time. But, as the two follow the mysterious blogger’s trail, secrets—both past and present—are revealed, and Jay and Bridgett must decide if their relationship can be something more than just sleeping with the enemy.
Bridgett and Jay are both very strong characters. And by that I mean they're strong-willed, ambitious, tough, and so on. They both have demanding careers that they've let run their lives because they're too busy protecting their broken hearts (even though they insist they don't have hearts any longer, let alone broken ones). It was great to read about a woman who was high powered and respected in her industry and I think Solheim did a good job of balancing that career-mindedness with the romance. Her characters showed that you can have a career and personal relationships...even though so many of the characters were real humans and screwed up from time to time. It was refreshing.

I've read four sports related novels this year (plus two manuscripts) and all but one revolved around football. I like sports so I enjoy when novels are set in that kind of environment. Of course, I wish authors would branch out from football but I guess I'll take what I can get. (Side note: please recommend any books that feature baseball teams or players. Or hockey. I am Canadian, after all.) Anyway, the actual game of football doesn't have much to do with this novel. This book features the owner of the team so he's not actually playing the sport. I liked that it gave a behind the scenes look of a franchise.

While Sleeping with the Enemy is part of a series, you don't necessarily have to have read the rest of them. If the series interests you, though, I'd recommend starting from the beginning since past characters show up in this book and you'll know who ends up with who in each book (though these are romances so you'll have an idea anyway!). You'll also have a better grasp on all of the characters. That's one thing I didn't love about this was hard to keep everyone straight. Names were dropped that I should have known but I didn't and I therefore didn't see the point of mentioning them. 

I can't let a review of a romance novel end without discussing the actual romance, now can I? I love a good second chance romance. I sometimes get annoyed when it's clear there was miscommunication between the love interests in the past and it's just due to stubbornness/fear that they haven't worked things out. In the case of Bridgett and Jay, there are elements in play that you don't even realize are elements. That's not a can tell there's more going on but you really don't know what it is. I liked that. Finally, the sex scenes are just steamy enough for this type of romance but be warned if you hate reading about sex or if you're looking for erotica. These two had crazy chemistry. ;)

Overall, Sleeping with the Enemy was a good romance read. It didn't blow me away but Tracy Solheim kept me interested and invested in the characters and story she created. Would I read more of her books? Yes, I probably would. I'm involved in the world of the Baltimore Blaze now and I wouldn't mind seeing what else those characters get up to.

One course complete for the Fall Reading Challenge!
Course: Scandal Studies 101
Department: Romance
*A copy of this novel was provided by the publisher via BookSparks as part of their Fall Reading Challenge. All opinions are honest and my own.*

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Review: A Sister's Place

I've read (almost) all of Savannah Page's When Girlfriends series and loved them (you can find my reviews here). So when I learned Page had a new stand alone women's fiction novel, I knew I needed to read it. I could not put A Sister's Place down. It's a Must Read.

Here's the synopsis:
Sisters Gracie and Juliette Bennett used to be the best of friends. But over the years, time and distance have worn the ties of sisterhood that once bound them together. Each has been following her own life's path, growing further apart.
When their beloved grandmother Mimi passes the Bennett sisters are set to inherit her house--the charming Santa Barbara Craftsman, a family heirloom three generations old.
But there's a catch: In order to inherit their home away from home Gracie and Juliette must live at 1402 Laguna Lane for one year...together.
Now, in an unexpected and peculiar way, their paths intertwine. Gracie and Juliette have a chance to come together and reexamine their relationship, perhaps even become the kinds of friends only sisters can be. Because as they'll learn over the course of the trying year ahead, Mimi's clever plan is about more than preserving a piece of family history.
Differences will be embraced, pasts confronted, loyalties tested, and secrets revealed. And in their darkest hours Gracie and Juliette will have to decide if a sister's love is what they need to get through the year. If a unique friendship between sisters is what they've needed all along.
This book will really resonate with you if you have a sister (but you'll still love it even if you don't). My advice though? Make sure you read it when you know you're able to see or at least text your sis. My own little sister is off working on a cruise ship right now and thank goodness I'll see her soon otherwise it'd be hard to make it through the book. Page nails the sister relationship and I adored it. It's just so authentic and I don't think the book would have been as good had Gracie and Juliette's relationship not been so real.

I liked that each sister was very much her own person but you could still see the similarities between the two women. I think the fact that Gracie and Juliette had such distinct personalities made for a more interesting read. The chapters alternate between the sisters and their voices were fresh and different enough that I looked forward to the change in perspective. I liked getting to know each sister and finding out what made them tick, what their jobs were like, and who they were dating.

I really loved the actual story. It's so sad that the sisters' grandmother has died but her passing led to something amazing - the women finally reconnecting and remembering why they were once so close. Besides, Mimi actually has quite the presence in this novel. Between the letters she wrote to the girls for each season and the fact that they're living in her house, the reader really gets to know the grandmother Gracie and Juliette so adored. She actually reminded me a bit of my own amazing grandmother...though I don't think my grandma will leave her house to my sister and I and make us live together for a year. :) The story could seem a little far-fetched but Page manages to bring it all together in a way that makes perfect sense.

A Sister's Place will be one of my 2015 books I'll remember for awhile. Savannah Page's novel struck all the right chords for me and I think it will do the same for many others. It's sweet, sad, funny, and dramatic - just like real life. I highly recommend it!

*A copy of this novel was provided by the author for a CLP Blog Tour. All opinions are honest and my own.*

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Release Blitz: Surviving Ice

Are you as excited as I am that K.A. Tucker's latest novel is released today? Surviving Ice is the fourth novel in the Burying Water series, but it can be read as a standalone novel. It's suspense, romance, and intrigue all wrapped up in a well written package. be honest, I can't say that for sure about Surviving Ice as I'm saving this one to read on my upcoming vacation. BUT I've read and loved all of the other books in the Burying Water series so I know what kind of read to expect. This book, like the others, is published by Atria, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. Oh, I bet you'd like to see the full cover in all of it's colourful glory right about now, wouldn't you? Ask and ye shall receive.

Here's what this new book is all about:
The USA TODAY bestselling author of the Ten Tiny Breaths series and Burying Water—which Kirkus Reviews called “a sexy, romantic, gangster-tinged page-turner”—returns with a new novel packed with romance, plot twists, and psychological suspense.Ivy Lee, a talented tattoo artist who spent the early part of her twenties on the move, is looking for a place to call home. She thinks she might have finally found it working in her uncle’s tattoo shop in San Francisco. But all that changes when a robbery turns deadly, compelling her to pack up her things yet again.
When they need the best, they call him. That’s why Sebastian Riker is back in California, cleaning up the mess made after a tattoo shop owner with a penchant for blackmail got himself shot. But it’s impossible to get the answers he needs from a dead body, leaving him to look elsewhere. Namely, to the twenty-something-year-old niece who believes this was a random attack. Who needs to keep believing that until Sebastian finds what he’s searching for.
Ivy has one foot out of San Francisco when a chance encounter with a stranger stalls her departure. She’s always been drawn to intense men, so it’s no wonder that she now finds a reason to stay after all, quickly intoxicated by his dark smile, his intimidating strength, and his quiet control.
That is, until Ivy discovers that their encounter was no accident—and that their attraction could be her undoing.
Intrigued yet? Good. Here's where you can buy your very own copy: ** ** Barnes and Noble  ** iBooks ** Kobo ** IndieBound

Here's an excerpt to get you even more excited:
                It’s just a regular ringtone. For me, though, it’s the wail of a war siren, and I’m immediately alert. There is only one person who has this number, and I didn’t expect him to use it again so soon.
                The tile is cool against my bare feet as I roll out of bed. I collect the phone from the nightstand with one fluid movement, unhindered by sheets or the morning sluggishness that an average person might face. Stepping through the propped-open patio doors and onto the balcony, I answer with a low, curt “Yeah.” The sky is just beginning to lighten over the quiet bay. Dozens of boats sit moored below, their passengers lulled into deep sleep by the ocean air and rhythmic waves. I’m high enough up that I’m not likely to offend anyone with my lack of clothing, especially at this hour. Not that I’m truly concerned by it.
                The code name is a sharp contrast to the warm breeze skating across my bare skin. My adrenaline begins to spike, all the same. Hearing it means that I will be forced to leave this haven soon. Sooner than I had hoped.
                “How is recovery going?”
                I instinctively peer down at the angry red scar on the outside of my thigh, where a bullet drilled into my flesh and muscle just three weeks ago, outside of Kabul. I nearly bled out before I made it to the doc. He patched me up on a makeshift operating table, buried deep in a maze of rooms, and charged me a hefty price.
                “Like new,” I lie.
                “Good.” Bentley’s voice is rich and smooth, a welcome sound in a sea of strangers. “Where are you now?”
                I peer out over the beautiful vista of crystal blue water and whitewashed stone buildings, the volcanic rock cliffs in the distance, reluctant to divulge my location. I sank a good chunk of my last payout on renting this one-bedroom villa for the month. It’s my private sanctuary, where I can revel in anonymity and peace for a while, before finding somewhere else to drift to.
                Bentley has never asked before.
                But he also has the technical capabilities to trace this call. If he really wants to find out, then he will. In fact, the second I picked up, he probably already had his answer. “Where do I need to be?” I say instead.
                “San Francisco.”

Haven't read the previous titles in the Burying Water Series? Get them here:
Burying Water
Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** iBooks ** Kobo ** IndieBound
Becoming Rain
Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** iBooks ** Kobo ** IndieBound
Chasing River
Amazon ** Barnes & Noble ** iBooks ** Kobo ** IndieBound

Author pic - KA Tucker

About K.A. Tucker: Born in small-town Ontario, K.A. Tucker published her first book at the age of six with the help of her elementary school librarian and a box of crayons. She currently resides in a quaint town outside of Toronto with her husband, two beautiful girls, and an exhausting brood of four-legged creatures.


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