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Thursday, August 31, 2017

IndieSage PR Presents: Toxic by Nicole Blanchard; #BookTour, #NowAvailable, #OutNow, #Review, #Giveaway

by Nicole Blanchard 
Publication Date: August 22, 2017 
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Dark Romance 
Rating: 4 Stars
Told in the first person.

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book for review from IndieSage PR and the author.  I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review.  The opinions I have expressed are my own.  I am posting this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255:  "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising".

“John Doe” was just another patient. A criminal.

As a prison nurse, I knew the rules: do my job, don’t get involved, and never let a prisoner get under my skin.

I broke all three.

My passion, my obsession, my addiction. I risked my entire life so we could be together.

I thought helping him escape from prison would be the hard part.

It turns out when you fall in love with a villain, you also turn into one.


My Thoughts:

Tessa Emerson is a woman who’s in a lot of pain.  It certainly is a sad way to start the book and my heart goes out to her.  It’s also sad to see how people have failed her – which adds a little realism to her life.  Her husband is ugly personified.  His behavior could be from one of two things.  Either our author has a very creative mind, and this is what I’d like to believe, or she’s had some personal experience that she used to create such a hateful character.

Gracin “King” Kingsley shows that even though a man may be incarcerated they’re not all bad.  Which is true and an example can be found if you watch Animal Planet’s Pit Bulls & Parolees.  Then the author stops my thoughts in an instant, which teaches me to never assume where an author is going to take you.  Then I’m turned around again, which just solidified my fate.  I have to know what Gracin is about because I’m conflicted as to who he really is.

Our author is very good at creating her characters.  They are ones that grab your attention.  She also uses suspense to get you to turn the page because you just don’t know what’s going to happen next.  Then there’s the mystery, you just can’t figure out who Gracin is and what drove him to be in the same place as Tessa.  In a way he is also her champion.  There’s also the heat that Ms. Blanchard does a great job of creating between her two main characters.  And lastly how much seems to happen to Tessa – both good and bad.  This whole story was like a train ride.  We enjoyed the trip and didn’t want it to be over.


My hands flex on his skin, but he's so intent on my response he either doesn't notice or doesn't care. Beneath my touch, he turns to granite and a part of me wants to take back my question, but I can’t. 
“What's wrong?” I ask, and I hope it deflects from this line of conversation. “Did I hurt you?”
He breaks eye contact and looks down to where my hands are touching his skin. The moment his eyes land on where our bodies connect, it makes me want to drop my hand. How close he always manages to get to me whenever I let curiosity—or stupidity—get the better of me is astounding. 
"Would take more than that to hurt me, little mouse."
I feel his words like dark secrets. They unfurl inside me, a molten mixture of pleasure and shame, a heady combination that invites me to ask for more. He's a craving I can't quite shake. A disease slowly spreading through me. My head tells me I should walk away, but my greedy heart begs for more of his illicit attention. 
"Little mouse?" I keep my focus on my fingers. Otherwise, they'll betray my nerves. I swipe antibacterial cream over his skin and realize resistance is practically impossible. Not when I can feel his muscles flexing underneath my hands, the heat coming off him in waves, and my body's answering thrum. 
It has been so long since I’ve felt anything other than violence and fear. The two have become so tightly intertwined that I was certain until now I'd never feel this again. Never feel warmth pooling low in my belly and radiating through my core or the answering wetness slicking between my legs. 
Horror accompanies the rush of pleasure, and I want to fling myself backward, but I know I can't let this dangerous man see my reaction. I can't let him know the effect he has on me. Can't let him have that kind of power over me. 
"Yes,” he finally says. “Because you always look like you want to scurry away into a corner and hide." 
His words make me want to do exactly that. My eyes dance to the door and then back to my hand as I swipe away another smear of blood from his skin. It would be so easy to escape him and his all-too-knowing stare. The reaction I can't deny. The yearning. Ten steps would bring me right back to my dreary life where I can drown in the day-to-day misery and the pain that blots out my unfortunate reality. 
They are ten steps I don’t take. I refuse to let King get the better of me again and return to doctoring his wounds, trading the wipes for clean, white bandages. Unlike Vic, when this man pressures me, tests my boundaries, I find myself wanting to fight back, wanting to go at him with teeth bared and fists balled. 
He lays a big, scratched-up hand over mine, pinning it to the heated flesh of his well-muscled chest. I peer up through my lashes and find the corner of his mouth tipped up in a half smile that would look pleasant on any other man. 
On King, it's a warning. 
Or a threat. 
My heart thumps in my chest, a rabbit trying to escape the pursuit of a predator. I take deep breaths to try to calm its frenetic pace, but it's futile while in his presence. I finish the bandage on his chest without taking the bait. Despite how alive he makes me feel, or maybe because of it, I won't encourage him. I won't go down that road. I did it once before, and it cost me everything. 
I'm waiting for him to throw out another challenge as I finish with his chest and arms, dump the trash into a bag, and set it by the door. 
"Can you stand for me?" I gesture with a roll of gauze I grabbed from my bag of supplies. "I need to wrap your ribs until they can get you in for an X-ray."
He obliges, reminding me of a half-tame animal submitting to human attention only to turn around and rip the person’s throat out seconds later. His abdomen ripples, and the low hum of desire that I've steadily been trying to ignore roars back to life made sharper by the edge of danger. 
Like fucking in public. 
It's wrong and dirty and you sort of hate yourself for enjoying it so much, but you come harder than you ever have in your life. It makes my breathing grow ragged, and I'm afraid he can hear me but can't find the willpower to back away. 
I have to lean close to wrap the bandage around his chest, which doesn't help. His scent fills my nose like a drug. My fingers brush against his stomach, and I'd give anything for five minutes to explore the line of muscles that disappears into his waistband. 
The fact that I manage to finish binding his ribs is a small miracle. He doesn't make a move to touch me the entire time, even though I spend it wishing he would. When I’m done, I can feel his eyes on me, patient and predatory as I pack up the rest of my supplies. 
"Stop doing that!" I bite out, revealing just how badly he has my nerves frayed. 
He gives me that half-grin again. "Doing what?"
"Staring at me like that. Are you trying to piss me off? Do you want me to have you reassigned?"
As though daring me, he takes a step forward. "You won't do that," he challenges. 
"No?" I retort though I can hear the flimsy note to my voice. 
His grin widens. "No."
I shake my head and feel my body drift closer to his. "I don’t know what you want from me, I don’t know what you think we’re doing here, but we shouldn’t. Let’s just get that clear right now. Also, I appreciate your concern for my safety, but there isn’t anything you can do to help me, and this sort of attention is only going to make my situation worse."
He shifts, and my whole body stiffens as he brings his lips to my cheek where the memory of the bruise throbs.
"Don't," I protest, but it comes out sounding more breathy than firm. 
"I'll make you a deal," he says as he closes a bit more of the distance between us. I nearly whimper from frustration, fear, and need. "One kiss. One kiss and I won't bother you again. No one will have to know." 
"You can't be serious," I whisper, but I know from the determined look in his eyes he's serious. “Why?”
His lips return to my cheek, surprising me with his gentleness, and I'm almost ashamed that my initial instinct is to flinch away from him. He seems to recognize it, and he sighs, pausing long enough to meet my eyes. We wait . . . watching each other. But when he doesn’t follow through with a slap or a biting comment, my traitorous body relaxes. 
My body is clearly an idiot. 
"C’mon," he coaxes as his lips grow bolder. "Let me give you this. One kiss. I promise you'll enjoy it. Let me show you a little something sweet to take away from the sour. One kiss, and if you want me to walk away after I will."
He's the devil incarnate, the snake that tempted Eve. Though, I'm sure as hell not in paradise. I hate myself for even considering it. Loathe the way my body shouts at me to say yes. 
"You won't bother me again?" The responding triumphant gleam in his eyes screams that I've taken a step off a precipice. There will be no going back after this. 
"Scouts honor." I snort, causing him to grin. "So, is that a yes?"
"You asked me earlier if I wanted to know your name."
He nods, but it's a quick, jerky movement. For the first time, he's the one caught off guard. 
"I think I'd like that." It'll be like saying goodbye, or at least that's what I tell myself. Goodbye to the rush of desire, the feeling of being alive. It was fun while it lasted but this level of craziness leads nowhere good. 
For a moment, I think my ears are tricking me, but no. King makes a deep, satisfied groan in the back of his throat. I'm so distracted I don't notice he's been slowly moving closer until his body is pressed fully against mine. My hands go to his shoulders, and I'm grateful for the bandages separating us. Too much contact with his skin and my brain would surely short circuit. 
"Gracin," he says, his lips so close they graze the shell of my ear. "My name is Gracin."
Then his mouth covers mine.

About Nicole Blanchard:

NicoleNew York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Nicole Blanchard lives in Mississippi with her family and their menagerie of animals. She chooses each day to chase her own fairy tale even if they contain their fair share of dragons. She is married to her best friend and owns her own business.

Nicole survives on a diet of too many books and substantial amounts of root beer and slim jims. When not reading, she’s lavishing attention on her family or inhaling every episode of The Walking Dead and The Big Bang Theory.


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IndieSage PR Presents: Alpha Squad Showdown by Lorelei Moone; #BlogTour, #NowAvailable, #OutNow, #Giveaway

Alpha Squad: Showdown: A Bear Shifter 
Paranormal Romance
by Lorelei Moone
Alpha Squad #4
Publication Date: August 17, 2017
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Shifter, Bear Shifter


Sean McMillan has always lived a life more human than shifter. Upon joining Alpha Squad he is thrust into a whole new world which is taking some getting used to. When two shifters turn up dead under suspicious circumstances in the otherwise quiet town of Inverness, Scotland, Alpha Squad is sent in to uncover the truth. So far, so easy; murder investigations are what Sean does best. Trouble is, one of the witnesses is able to distract him just with her presence. And he can’t shake the feeling that she knows more than what she’s letting on.
Lab assistant Erin Reid thought her work at the research project led by leading Geneticist Professor Blake was benign enough, if excruciatingly boring. Little did she know that they were all embroiled in a deadly conspiracy. When she finds out what she’s been involved in, the resulting guilt weighs heavy on her and she vows to make things right.
What starts off as an ordinary murder investigation quickly turns into something bigger and more dangerous than anyone on Alpha Squad could foresee. Is shifter enemy No. 1 Victor Domnall back with a plan more devious than ever? Can Sean and the squad put all the pieces of the puzzle together before it’s too late?


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The shifters he'd come into contact with since Alpha Squad hadn’t fully accepted him either.
Erin was different though. The way she'd looked at him had made him uneasy at first. But now he recognized it as admiration.
Perhaps even love.
No, that would be ridiculous.
What is? her voice asked.
Sean closed his eyes and tried to fight the emotions that threatened to overwhelm.
It was no use.
Her scent tempted him.
Her mere presence had made him agree to things he would have never considered otherwise.
Why can I feel you so keenly now? When earlier I couldn't, he thought.
I don't know, but I'm glad for this.
Sean looked down at her again. Her face was still wet.
A soft drizzle started, depositing gleaming little droplets in her bright red hair.
She was a vision. A Scottish beauty that could inspire legends.
With hands that had grown a mind of their own, he reached for her. Cupping her face, leaning down to meet her lips with his.
She didn't resist, but rather seemed to melt against him.
How could a touch feel so powerful? His fingertips on her moist cheeks.
His kiss merging into hers.
Their minds had become one already. Those deepest, darkest parts of himself which he'd fought an entire lifetime to keep hidden wanted more.
This is inappropriate. You're a suspect.
I'm your partner.
Sean inhaled sharply, letting her perfume fill his lungs. Sweet, like a summer meadow.
Yes. Yes, you are.
Every fiber in his body agreed. They were one in thought. It was only a matter of time before they'd become one in flesh.
With all the self-control he could manage, he pulled away from her. This wasn't the place, nor the time.
It wasn't the kind of man he was either.
She stood frozen in place for a moment, her eyes still closed, her beautiful face a mask of calm.
"Let's get out of here before anyone takes notice," Sean suggested. "I still owe you lunch."
Erin shook her head. "After everything, I'm not hungry anymore."
Sean nodded. She needed to process what had just happened. That was understandable.
I'm sorry.
We'll get to the bottom of this, I promise, he tried to reassure her.
They said their goodbyes, awkwardly.
See you later.
I can't wait.
As Sean watched her walk away, he tried to regain control. He'd given her too much. He'd accepted her help and they would investigate the lab together.
But there'd be no more of this. Sean licked his lips, briefly. He could still taste her.
This was unacceptable. No matter how beautiful she was, or how strongly he felt about her. He couldn't let it happen again, not until the case was over.


Lorelei Moone is an up-and-coming author of paranormal romance based in London. A lover of all things sweet, and caffeinated, when she’s not writing about sexy bear shifters and their strong-willed curvaceous love interests, Lorelei can be found baking cookies or cakes for her family.


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