Happy Wine and Books Wednesday, reader friends! Hope the last week of May is treating you well. This week's wine / book pairing is brought to you by Author Brianna Hale's Lap of Luxury (second book in her Love Don't Cost A Thing series) and indie winemaker Patrice Grasset's Chenin Blanc. Truly, a luxury pair for your summer reading list, especially if you love fast paced, dark romance and silky white wines. Don't delay! Pour yourself a glass of Grasset's chenin blanc today, settle in with the second installment of Hale's Love Don't Cost A Thing series, then sit back and ahh, enjoy, dahlings! Happy Wine Wednesday!
Captive. Pet. Lover. Pawn…
Darkness lives inside Damir Ravnikar, and that darkness craves one thing: me. Rich, ruthless, and handsome as sin, Damir’s promised me the world to make up for my life’s myriad disappointments.
But his promise comes with a price.
Damir intends to use me to hunt down his double-crossing brother. With every jewel, every kiss, I can feel myself losing my morals, my freedom and even my sanity. Because darkness lives inside me, too. He’s laying my deepest secrets bare, and there’s nothing I can do to stop him.
My name is Bethany, and I’ve fallen into the lap of luxury.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Contains dark romantic themes. This book is NOT a standalone and is intended to be read after COME TO DADDY. No cliffhanger.
From my review:
Dark, Thrilling and Hot, Hot, Hot!
I love Ms. Hale’s writing and I loved this book! After reading book 1 in the ‘Love Don’t Cost A Thing’ series, I was really curious to see how she was going to make us fall in love with Damir. (Brutal, psychotic, devastating Damir) But she totally did! I adored Bethany’s character too. She’s such a quirky, different personality type for a heroine and Hale really fleshed out her back story, bringing the snarky secretary from book one to life in an endearing way. Bethany and Damir were made for each other and I enjoyed every steamy, thrilling moment of their story. If you love dark, edgy romance with action, suspense and underground crime world intrigues then you’ll love Lap of Luxury. Be sure to read Come to Daddy (book 1) first though.
Welcome to another edition of Wine and Books Wednesday. This week's pairing is brought to you by Author Astrid V.J.'s fairy tale retelling, Gisela's Passion and indie wine maker, Frank Massard's Verdejo. And what a beautiful couple these two make! I fell in love with both the book cover to Gisela's Passion and the gorgeous label on this Spanish bottle. As soon as I laid eyes on them, I knew they were a match. Your going to want to make sure you have them both for your summer reading time. So, pour yourself a glass of this light, citrusy wine (perfect for the season) from Naked Wines' indie winemaker's Angels series, grab a copy of Gisela's Passion and enter an enchanted folktale world. Ah, enjoy. Happy Wine / Book Wednesday, everyone and happy reading!
Ever since she can remember, 18-year-old Gisela Winry has wanted to dance. Her strict father sees dancing as the path to immorality, licentiousness and debauchery. Devastated at his wrath after she secretly auditions and wins the title Harvest Queen of Ylvaton, Gisela turns to her best friend, Hilarion, who proposes a path she cannot take. With their friendship broken, Hilarion retreats to the solace of the forest where he lets his hatred and jealousy fester. Meanwhile, Gisela meets Vincent, a young nobleman seeking to escape his dead brother’s shadow.
Will Gisela be able to uphold her family honour and get to do the one thing she’s always been passionate about?
Will Vincent’s chance encounter with the lovely harvest queen from a tiny village become more meaningful than earning his father’s approval?
And will Hilarion fight for the love of his life or give in to the darkness within him?
Immerse yourself in the life of the common people of Vendale in this prequel to The Siblings’ Tale. Gisela’s Passion is the retelling of a lesser-known Slavic folk tale, which is better known in its incarnation as a French ballet.
The e-book of Gisela's Passion also includes exclusive access to "Vincent's Dream OR The Power of Decisiveness". This alternative ending to Gisela's Passion, which explores the possibility of a different path for the three protagonists of this story, is not intended for wider publication. The link to Vincent's Dream is embedded in a hidden place. This is a treasure hunt. Good luck!
From my review:
A Beautiful Ballet Fairy Tale Retell
I’ll start by saying that I am I love with the classic story ballet, Giselle. I was very excited to find a retelling of it in written form. The author’s description of setting was absolutely beautiful and probably my favorite part of the book. Seriously, I want to find this story book world so rich in the landscapes and culture I’ve always imagined when thinking of regional Eastern European folkdances and set up camp. Gisela’s village was vibrant and her vineyard home quaint. All the characters from the original story make an appearance in V.J’s retelling and I like what she did with the male MC’s character especially.
It is no secret that Gisela’s passion is her dancing and the dance scenes were very nicely described, I thought. The connection and romance between the leading pair was somewhat brief. What we learn about the characters mostly revolves around each one’s personal internal struggles. I do wish there had been a little more ‘Gisela and Vincent’ before the book’s dramatic end. But we have it from the author herself that this book is a precursor to other stories set in the same world with more magic to come. All in all, a beautifully written interpretation of an old tale. Would recommend to readers who love old world romance with a touch of magic woven in.
*Small spoiler and WARNING to romance readers with a penchant for HEAs. This retelling stays true to the classic folktale and ballet that it is derived from which is, in essence, a tragedy. As such, it was written sans a romantic HEA, but is still a lovely rendition of the story that remains one of the most well known and beloved ballets of the Romantic Era.
Happy Wine & Books Wednesday! I have a very exciting pairing for you today. This week's lovely wine / book couple are brought to you by Author Miri Stone's shifter novel, Pyro, Pyro, Burning Bright, and Indie wine maker Scott Kelley's amazing pinot gris. If you love originality, adventure and fantasy, you won't be disappointed with this dynamic duo. Grab up your copy of Stone's debut novel today, pour yourself a glass of pinot gris and prepare to be swept away. Happy Wine Wednesday, reader friends, and happy reading!
*Scott Kelley Pinot Gris can be found in the Naked Wines indie winemaker's Angel series.
FROM THE ASHES, EVEN THE MONSTERS CAN BE REBORN.
Mackenzie wakes up, naked, in front of a burning apartment with amnesia and a voice in her head telling her to run. But when she takes refuge in a small mountain town, the fire beckons. The voice in her head has a disturbing psychic connection to the flames. And yet, she can’t seem to stay away from Ryan, the local Fire Chief and bear shifter alpha.
Too bad it’s a terrible idea to date a fireman when you’re harboring an inner pyro...
Ryan is on the hunt for the arsonist who’s stalking his town. Yet, he can’t get his mind off Mackenzie, the sassy new barista who pours lattes like a dream. When she keeps turning up at increasingly dangerous call-outs, he has to decide…
Is his mate the arsonist or merely a soul swept up in the flames?
Their sexual charge is through the roof. But their lives, and the lives of everyone they love, are set to combust if they don’t work out the true identity of the arsonist. Because he has a dark vendetta of his own. One that will not be denied.
PYRO, PYRO, BURNING BRIGHT is the first book in a suspense-filled, paranormal shifter romance series. If you like kick-ass female main characters, sexy bear shifters, troubled villains, sizzling romances, and high-stakes adventures packed with mystery then you’ll love Miri Stone’s PHOENIX CREW series.
This is a full length novel (133k words) and written for mature audiences (18+ only please!) It includes explicit sex scenes, frequent cussing, psychic magical powers and hot growly alpha males bumping up against sassy heroines who can hold their own.
From my review:
Great paranormal romance (my favorite kind) read! The eerie mysteries surrounding Mackenzie’s character drew me in from the start and, all the way through, I just couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. I’m usually a little on the fence as far as shifter romances go, but Stone packed this novel full of amazing, richly developed characters that I connected with right away (to the point that I’m hoping a bunch of them show up in future books.) Not to mention all the smokin hot chemistry between Mackenzie and a certain fire chief bear shifter. Whew, my kindle is still sizzling! Can’t wait to read more about the Phoenix crew. Would recommend to paranormal romance readers that love hot shifters.
Happy Wine / Book Wednesday! Today's pairing is brought to you by Author, Eve Kasey's Touched by love from the Her Hands series and Imagery Chardonnay. These two make a dynamic duo that I know you are going to love. Grab up a copy of this charming contemporary romance and fill your glass with some delectable Imagery Chard for the perfect reading experience!
One night, everything they want.
When you lose your parents and get surprised with the psychic "gift" of learning an object's history through touch, you start to wish life were simpler. Predictable. Nora's senior year of college is anything but. As she struggles to get used to a new place, a meddling grandmother, and a boss who wants her to move on, she also finds herself getting too close to Liam Walker, the gorgeous professor who blew onto campus like a tempest.
Liam had to get out of LA fast. That's how he ended up teaching in Tacoma, Washington - the land of rain and recycling. He just wants to rebuild his life, realize a childhood dream of a Leonardo da Vinci exhibition, and ignore how drawn he is to the student in the back row of his Renaissance Art class. Every look, every touch, every conversation tells Liam that Nora Merano is everything he's ever wanted when he shouldn't want anything at all.
The attraction between them can't be denied. They make a deal: one night, everything they want. The night turns out to be too much and not enough. Liam is too unpredictable for the quiet life Nora craves. Nora doesn't fight for anything, including what Liam feels between them. Will Nora and Liam stay firmly on their separate paths or will they allow themselves to be Touched by Love?
Note: This steamy contemporary romance (with a hint of historical!) can be read as a standalone in the Her Hands series and offers a guaranteed happily ever after.
From my review:
An addictive reading experience. I loved the couple—Nora and Liam. The tension between them was perfect and I had the best time watching them work through everything keeping them apart. Nora was intensely likeable and Liam was absolutely dreamy. The secondary romance added to the suspense and I liked how it gave us the chance to fully delve into Nora’s gift—something that showed up in the first book in this series. Very well done! Would recommend to readers who love contemporary romance with unforgettable characters.
It's that day again! Time for books and wine, two of our favorite things here on the blog. This Wine Wednesday, I have a super hot pair for you, both direct from my home state. One of my favorite authors, best seller Pamela Clare, brings us another terrific adventure romance with Slow Burn, the second book in her Colorado High Country series. I'm loving these novels set in the Colorado mountains and featuring the hottest rescue team you'll ever find. Slow Burn pairs perfectly with this absolutely beautiful Savignon Blanc from Colorado's own Grande River Vineyards. I found this lovely bottle at a "Wine in the Pines" event last fall and took a picture for the blog right there on the spot (my husband's arm is even in the background, lol). Between Clare, a Colorado author, Slow Burn and Grande River, this post is filled with all kinds of love for my home state and I want you join in on the experience. Grab up a copy of the book, fill your glass with some crisp, delicious Grande River Sav Blanc and slip away on your very own Rocky Mountain adventure.
Happy Wine Wednesday, everyone and, as always, happy reading!
Victoria Woodley is done with men. Fresh off a dating nightmare, she flies from her home in Chicago to Scarlet Springs to take part in her best friend’s wedding. Who picks her up at the airport? Eric Hawke. Of course. She made a fool of herself over him last time she was here. He’s cocky, charming, and sexy as sin. But the fact that she’s attracted to him is all the proof she needs that he’s bad news. She would ignore him if she could. But he’s the best man, and she’s the maid of honor. She can’t just tell him to jump in a lake—especially not when her lips are locked with his.
Eric isn’t looking for a relationship. Between running the firehouse and volunteering for the county’s search and rescue team, he has enough on his plate. He doesn’t need to get tangled up with a woman from the big city, especially one whose idea of roughing it is going without designer coffee. Yet from the moment he looks into Victoria’s big brown eyes, the attraction he feels is too strong to deny. Faster than he can imagine, the spark of desire that has smoldered between them since the first day they met will flare into full-blown passion.
But can Eric convince Victoria to set aside her doubts and trust him with her heart before their time together runs out?
Hello, fellow book and wine lovers, happy Wine and Book Wednesday! I hope you all are doing well and getting through this crazy spell of having to stay home. This week, I have the perfect pairing for you to help pass the time. Radiance by Bestselling Author, Grace Draven, and the beautiful Ondine Chardonnay from my indie wine makers' stash. Both are rich, full and fantastic! Grab your glass, grab the book, then get ready to be swept away. Happy Wine Wednesday, everyone, and as always, happy reading!
~THE PRINCE OF NO VALUE~
Brishen Khaskem, prince of the Kai, has lived content as the nonessential spare heir to a throne secured many times over. A trade and political alliance between the human kingdom of Gaur and the Kai kingdom of Bast-Haradis requires that he marry a Gauri woman to seal the treaty. Always a dutiful son, Brishen agrees to the marriage and discovers his bride is as ugly as he expected and more beautiful than he could have imagined.
~THE NOBLEWOMAN OF NO IMPORTANCE~
Ildiko, niece of the Gauri king, has always known her only worth to the royal family lay in a strategic marriage. Resigned to her fate, she is horrified to learn that her intended groom isn’t just a foreign aristocrat but the younger prince of a people neither familiar nor human. Bound to her new husband, Ildiko will leave behind all she’s known to embrace a man shrouded in darkness but with a soul forged by light.
Two people brought together by the trappings of duty and politics will discover they are destined for each other, even as the powers of a hostile kingdom scheme to tear them apart.
From my Review:
Heart Melting Fantasy Romance
I loved the medieval fantasy world setting of this book. I had been wanting to read one of Ms. Draven’s books for a while and I’m so glad I did. Radiance was a different kind of romance. The two leads are different species and absolutely do not find each other physically attractive, but the way they come together is so beautiful. It was really fun to watch the relationship between Ildiko and Brishen grow to a fever pitch and I can’t wait to read the second book in the Wraith Kings series now.
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Happy Wine and Books Wednesday! Hope you're all staying safe and well during this time. I know we're all looking for things to occupy ourselves with amid the whole "stay home and don't get sick quarantine" and so I bring you this beautiful pairing today. Romance Author Eve Kasey's Love in Stone from the Her Hands series is sure to grab your attention from the start and weaves back and forth between high society, big city life and the open air setting of a paleontology dig in Montana. It's a smart, refreshing, new love story that pairs perfectly with a glass of Breathless Winemaker's Penelope Brut which is equally adventurous and high spirited.
I know that I mentioned before, maybe not here but on my social media somewhere, that I had ordered a group of wines from nakedwines.com's Angels series. Essentially, all of the wines in the set are from independent wine makers from all over the world and they're wonderful so I hope you'll give them a try. I'll be pairing lots more indie romance author's books with these Angel series wines because what could go better with and indie book than an indie wine? On that note, be sure to grab up your copy of Love in Stone and pour yourself a glass of sparkling Penelope for a rare treat and enjoy!
Stay safe out there friends. I wish you all a happy Wine / Book Wednesday and, as always, some very happy reading!
Clare Clover is super smart, but she’s not a people person. At 27, she’s never even had a boyfriend. That’s why she works with fossils. She doesn’t have to worry about saying the wrong thing to a bunch of bones. When she gets chosen to lead an exciting excavation, Clare thinks she’ll finally be able to make a name for herself. What else is there to do besides dig in Middle-of-Nowhere, Montana? Then she meets Ben Merano, a handsome geologist who gives her an education her three college degrees couldn’t come close to.
Ben Merano loves his isolated, drama-free existence with no responsibilities. Traveling, hanging out with the guys, being outdoors—what’s not to like? Then Clare, a paleontologist with killer legs and zero social skills, shows up at his camp. Ben feels an instant connection to the reserved girl from the big city. That he had a vision of her a few weeks before they met is only part of her appeal. Ben starts to believe he wouldn’t have seen Clare coming if she wasn’t meant to be his. The problem is he’ll have to convince this student of science there’s such a thing as destiny.
Clare’s brain tells her a relationship with Ben would never work, even if he can sing like Paul McCartney and kiss like Casanova. After all, Ben’s a wanderer and she’s got the job of her dreams back in New York. Will Clare’s logic, and lack of experience with love, get in the way of what they both want—or will she allow herself to find Love in Stone?
From my review:
A fun, well written love story.
A really enjoyable read by this debut author. Clare and Ben were such an adorable couple. It was fun to watch them grow together and learn about each other, life and love. The whole paleontology theme was really cool and, as a Rocky Mountain girl, I loved all the Montana scenes. I thought the psychic element the author threw in added a nice sort of fated love feel as well, which the hopeless romantic in me had to appreciate. Can’t wait to read more books by this fabulous new writer!
Hello, everyone, happy Wine and Book Wednesday! This week's dynamic duo is brought to you by Author Shelly Ferguson's Sweet Shifter Romance, Scarlett, and Callie Wine Collection's Chardonnay. Don't they look great together? I thought so. Both are sweet, refreshing and, I gotta say, crush worthy if we're talking appearances. Once you get started with these two, you're in for a treat so sit back, relax, grab up a copy of Scarlett and pour some Callie Chard into your favorite glass. I promise, all your cares will float away.
Happy Wine Wednesday and happy reading!
*Links and my review down below.
One crazy week will change Scarlett’s life forever.
For the last ten years, Scarlett thought her Fated Mate was dead … until he hit her with a buggy in the shampoo aisle of the grocery store three days after she moved to a small town in the Georgia mountains.
That little bump leads to a girlfriend road trip, a hot centaur, a creepy co-worker, and a gremlin sidekick who stabs first and asks questions … never.
When the local romance book club – The Crazy Cats – adopted her all bets were off. They planned her wedding and helped her settle into their small town before she knew what was happening.
Will, she chose the charming Derek Heiss (the King of Centaurs) or Ian Beckett (a small town deputy she was born to love)?
From my review:
A sweet shifter romance! Scarlett is a very enjoyable read. It’s packed with humor, witty internal monologue from the heroine, and lots of super hot alphas from all spectrum of the mythical world. The gremlins were adorable and I now am wondering where I can find one of my own. All in all, a fun book that kept me reading from beginning to end!
Happy Wednesday to all you wine and book lovers out there! This week's wine / book pairing is brought to you by Author Cassie Faber's Forever Memories from her Angelbay Harbor Series and Carmel Road's Unoaked Chardonnay. Both book and wine are fabulous and I had a lovely time introducing the two of them to one another. ;) If you love steamy small town romances and rich chards without the oaky bite, don't miss out on these two. Happy Wine Wednesday, everyone, and happy reading!
*Read on for book description, links and my review.
When Claire discovers the man she loves holds the key to unlocking her memories of the tragic accident that took her mom, the last thing she expects is to stumble upon a heartbreaking secret that threatens to tear her already fragmented family apart.Realizing that being a part of her life will only hurt her again, Boh decides that the only way to keep Claire safe is to take Olivia back to Brooklyn where he tries to make amends by helping her build a life at the cost of his own.Nine months later he returns to Angelbay Harbor to bury a friend, and he’s confronted by the need to protect the only woman he’s ever cared for—the only woman he’s ever broken all his rules for.Pulled under by the weight of their demons, Boh and Claire must come face to face with their darkest fears if they ever want the chance to break the surface, and have a second chance at love. to edit.
From my review:
A sweet girl, a sexy bad boy and an unforgettable cast of characters. I’m in love with this sexy, suspenseful, small town romance. All the characters are great. I want my own Miles. He’s so supportive and protective of Claire and I loved his sense of humor. When you discover an author that can make you fall in love with their supporting characters, you know you’ve found a gem!
But on to Claire and Boh, their romance is both sweet and intense. This second Angelbay book takes the reader on even more of an emotional roller coaster ride with lots of twists and turns and many more secrets revealed. Claire rocks Boh’s tough guy world and I enjoyed watching her come into her own. Boh’s side of things is equally intense as he deals with his troubled past. It’s a rocky road for both of them but that makes the HEA all the sweeter.
Faber’s written a page turner for sure that left me wanting more, especially with the teaser at the end for McKenzie and War’s story in the next book of the series which promises to be smoking hot. Can’t wait!
Happy Wine Wednesday! I'm running a little late with this post today, but I didn't want to miss the mid-week holiday aka. Wine Night ;) This week's wine / book pairing is brought to you by Author Lacey Dailey's NA romance, Specter and the rich, creamy Butternut Chardonnay. These two go perfectly together for a romance reading escape you're sure to enjoy! Find the book description, links and my thoughts on the book down below.
Two years ago, I joined an organization that was so top secret not even the FBI could locate us.
As a hacker, I teetered on the edge of right and wrong every single day, breaking the law to make the world around me a better place.
I knew how dangerous my work at Circuit was. I knew I could get caught one day and wind up behind bars for the rest of my life.
I didn’t care.
And then the packages started to show up on my doorstep. One after another. Never the same gift twice. Never the same day.
I warned my team, tried to get them to prepare for a takedown. They didn't seem as concerned as I was to learn my identity as Specter had been compromised.
I prepared for everything.
And then Sage Maddison appeared with one of the packages, snow-white hair and eyes filled with fear.
I was not prepared for her.
From my review:
What a book! Dailey’s writing hooked me right from the beginning and it didn’t let go until the very end. With all the intrigue and emotion and character growth that happened, the twist at the end took me completely by surprise. The underworld hacker theme was really interesting, kind of comic book era meets modern day tech, while the drama was heartrending and what kept me turning pages.
About the Author
Amanda V Shane is an author of paranormal and fantasy romance and is currently working on her Tides of Atlantis series about the super hot lost kings of Atlantis as well as her Enchanted Lands Romances.