Book Review ~ Engaged to the EMT by Piper Rayne

I received an ARC of Piper Rayne’s Engaged to the EMT. This is the 3rd book in the Blue Collar series and the first book of Pipers and Rayne’s I’ve read. Only found out they are 2 authors by reading this book. You don’t need to read the first 2 books in the series to understand what’s happening in this book.

I loved this book. Definite 5 star read! I loved both characters, they were perfect for each other and it was fun reading them fall for each other. The perfect romantic comedy with a sexy paramedic and a spunky physical therapist. I can’t wait to go back and read the first 2 books in the series to find out if the other 2 Bianco brothers are as swoon worthy as Luca.

Lauren and Luca went to high school together. Lauren ended up dating Luca’s best friend but Luca liked Lauren and in an effort to never want to betray his best friend he found it best to act like he hated her. They both hated each other so when Luca comes up with the idea to pretend to be engaged to show his mom he’s got his act together before she goes in for heart surgery, Lauren is the perfect girl for the job. Their hate for each other will keep them from falling for each other during this pretend engagement.

Blog Tour ~ Raise your Game by Cassia Leo

From New York Times bestselling author Cassia Leo comes a sexy, laugh-out-loud romantic comedy of epic proportions. RAISE YOUR GAME is LIVE and available on all platforms!

Title: RAISE YOUR GAME
Author: Cassia Leo
Release: November 12th

About RAISE YOUR GAME

Logan Pierce, New York’s most notorious womanizer, has just offered me a raise and promotion…if I pretend to be his wife.

But neither of us anticipate his brother’s attempts to sabotage our fake marriage.

Now, Logan and I are a team, and it’s game on. This raise is going to cost me.

From New York Times bestselling author Cassia Leo comes a sexy, laugh-out-loud romantic comedy of epic proportions.

Logan Pierce is our new CEO and he needs me as much as I need him.

Logan has thirty days to save Close-Up magazine from bankruptcy. And he needs me to pretend to be his wife at a couples’ retreat, where Logan and I will attempt to snag an exclusive celebrity scoop that will revive our readership. If I can help him save Close-Up, he’ll inherit his father’s publishing empire and I’ll get promoted to editor, with a very healthy raise.

Logan has thirty days to prove to his father that he’s not just a bad boy womanizer. And I have seven days to prove my investigative journalism skills to Logan at a couples’ retreat meant to revive the sex lives of dissatisfied married couples.

This raise is going to cost me.

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CHAPTER 1

LOGAN

 

As I slide into the raven-haired CEO of Brunswick Publishing, I hear another squeak.

“Did you hear that? Do we have mice?” asks the muffled voice of a man, his question immediately followed by another squeak from my closet-companion.

I freeze mid-thrust. “Shh. We have to be quiet,” I remind Helen Brunswick as I press her too-thin-for-my-taste body against the back wall of the coat closet, where we are currently celebrating our new partnership.

Helen just agreed to sell the majority share in her failing publishing company to my father’s cutthroat investment firm, Angel Investments. We aren’t really angel investors, and we’re far from angels. My father, brother, and I are highly skilled in the art of hostile takeovers. Though, my technique is much less hostile.

What can I say? I’m a lover, not a fighter.

Helen giggles softly. “I’ll be quiet as a mouse,” the forty-three-year-old CEO says in a babyish voice.

Quiet as a mouse? Is this woman serious?

I shake my head as I thrust into her again. Squeak. Thrust. Squeak. Thrust. Squeak. Rolling my eyes, I realize I’m going to have to take a different approach with this squeaker toy before someone hears her and finds us in here.

No one can find us in here. I’ve been warned a million times by my father and the ethics committee at Angel Investments that I’m not allowed to use my cock to get women to sign on the dotted line. My father didn’t think it was funny when I mentioned that, unlike my older brother Everett, my dick isn’t pointy enough to sign anything.

Coiling my right arm around Helen’s waist, I pull her flush against my chest and whisper in her ear, “Do you like it rough?”

“Oh, yes,” she moans.

“How about we do a little roleplaying. I’m a dirty—but devastatingly handsome—pirate, and you’re a ripe, beautiful maiden. I’ve come to have my way with you before I pillage your town.”

The scenario wasn’t very far from the truth, but Helen didn’t seem to catch the symbolism.

She lets out a breathy chuckle. “You’re so naughty, Logan. I love it. I’ll be anything and anyone you want. Just don’t stop fucking me.”

I tighten my arm around her waist and gently clasp my other hand over her mouth as I whisper, “Aye, fair maiden. I’ll be taking what I want,” I say in an awful pirate accent, keeping one hand over her mouth as I slide my other hand between her thighs. “And what I want is your sweet, sweet nectar.”

And by nectar, I’m referring to the majority stake in your $322 million publishing company.

I rub her swollen bud as she breathes heavily against the palm of my hand. Then, I thrust into her harder, my eight-inch cock slamming into her cervix. She takes this as a cue to begin acting the part of fair maiden—a little too enthusiastically.

This time she doesn’t squeak. This time she screams. And her scream is so loud and high-pitched, I’ll have tinnitus for a month.

“Shit!” I whisper as I frantically pull out of her and attempt to tuck my throbbing erection into my pants.

“I’m so sorry!” Helen whispers as she bends over to reach for the pink G-string wrapped around her ankles.

But the coat closet in the employee break room at Brunswick Publishing is too small, and she can’t seem to bend over far enough. Every time she tries, she grinds her bare ass against the bulge in my pants.

“Hurry up! I hear voices coming,” I urge.

“I can’t reach my panties. You need to get out first!”

I reach for my zipper and pull it up, but it snags on my shirt tail. “Fuck!” I whisper as I try to unzip it, but it’s stuck.

I try yanking the fabric to rip it out of the zipper, but it won’t budge. Now, I’m not only standing in a closet with the bare-assed CEO, I’m also flushed and sweaty, with a waning erection in my pants.

I quickly button my pants and the top button on my suit jacket, but that’s clearly not enough to cover up the indecency below my waist. The fashion police will have to forgive me this once as I button the second button on my jacket, which works only slightly better to cover up the bulge and the bunny-ear of white fabric sticking out of my zipper.

I don’t hear any more voices outside the closet, so this is probably the right time to sneak out. But as I spin around and open the door, I get tangled in a red wool sweater. I try to pull it off me, but the metal hanger comes off the rod and hooks onto my collar, poking me in the back of the neck.

“Shit!” I whisper, contorting my body so I can reach back and remove the hanger from my collar. “Get it off me!”

“Get what off you? Hurry up!”

Somehow, the stupid sweater will not fall away. It’s sticking to my jacket like static cling. Finally, red-faced and feeling as if I’m about to combust with frustration, I throw open the closet door to escape the demon sweater. Standing in the middle of the employee break room is a group of at least a dozen people, all staring at me as I step out of the closet with a semi.

“That’s one way to come out of the closet,” says a male voice that sounds like it’s coming from the back of the group.

Some of them snicker. Some of the women look crestfallen. A silver-haired man I recognize as the head of acquisitions is staring at me with his mouth agape. One group of three guys near the coffee machine seem to be paying each other—probably making good on a wager of how long it would take me to get into Helen’s panties.

“What are you waiting for?” Helen whispers, clearly still facing the back of the closet. “Hurry up so I can get my underwear on.”

I smile as I softly close the door behind me. “She thought she heard a mouse in there, so I was just trying to help her find it.”

The three guys near the coffee machine chuckle as they continue settling their bets.

Helen emerges from the closet, her raven hair disheveled as she straightens her skirt. “This isn’t what it looks like. Mr. Pierce was merely helping me…reach something up…high…in the… He’s very tall. Very…big.”

An older woman in an ivory pantsuit stares at my crotch and scrunches her nose in disgust. “Have you no shame?”

I cock an eyebrow as I flash the old woman my best seductive smile. “Wanna find out?”

* * *

“To say I’m disappointed with you right now would be an understatement and completely useless,” my father begins as he pours two glasses of bourbon from a crystal decanter in his corner office at Angel Investments. Keeping one drink for himself, he hands the other to my brother Everett. “It is blatantly clear you have no regard for how your actions reflect on the company, and you’ve once again left me with the task of cleaning up your mess.”

“I can fix this,” I say, pouring myself a drink.

“How?” my father demands, unbuttoning his jacket before taking a seat at his desk. “Helen has already been warned by her board of directors that any deal with our name on it will be rejected. And might I remind you, there are a plethora of investors eager to buy them out. Not to mention Ronald just informed me the ethics committee will be reviewing your work on this acquisition.”

Everett takes a seat in the chair across from my father, leaning back with a smug grin on his face. “Yeah, how are you going to fix this, Logan? Going to offer to go down on old Helen this time?”

I chuckle at his barb. “For your information, brother, forty-year-old women are great in bed. They’re just not very easy to bribe.”

Everett rolls his eyes at my reference to the fact that the ethics committee has had to investigate—and cover up—at least four of his acquisitions for suspected bribery.

“All right. That’s quite enough,” my father interrupts, setting his tumbler of bourbon on the desk and expelling a heavy sigh. “You’ve both been caught with your pants down more times than I can count.”

“I’ve never slept with a client,” Everett insists.

“I was speaking metaphorically. I know you’re more like your mother, Everett, about as subtle as a sledgehammer to the head, but do try to keep up.”

I stifle a laugh. “With all due respect, Dad, I hardly think having sex is on par with bribery. One of those is clearly illegal.”

My father narrows his eyes at me. “Some people might think sleeping with someone to get ahead in business is a form of prostitution.”

“And those people have no understanding of the law,” I reply.

My father shakes his head, probably regretting that he forced me to get a law degree. “I’ve given you both more than enough chances to turn away from these unscrupulous tactics. It’s time I do something about it. Something drastic.”

“Cue the ultimatum,” I remark, taking a seat in the chair next to Everett.

My father’s distinguished air of discontent unravels into a devilish grin. “I think you’ll like this ultimatum, son. In fact,” he continues, shooting a glance in Everett’s direction, “I think you’ll both be very pleased. Provided you follow the rules, one of you stands to make spectacular gains.”

Everett cocks an eyebrow. “Could we dispense with the cryptic allusions and discuss this ultimatum you speak of?”

My father chuckles. “Everett, I realize patience was never your strong suit. I understood this the moment you bribed a classmate to be your friend in primary school. You’ve never had the patience to cultivate relationships. You’ve always seen money as the only tool in your box.”

I brace myself as my father turns to me. “Go ahead. Hit me with your best shot.”

“You’re also impatient, Logan,” he continues. “You think your good looks are your key to success. Taking women straight to bed instead of courting them is your only approach. It’s no surprise to me you’re still single at your age.”

I chuckle with disbelief. “I’m twenty-eight. I’m in my prime. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying life before you settle down. If we’re going to talk about singlehood reaching its expiration date, you’ve been divorced for seven years. When are you going to get back in the saddle, old boy?”

My father nods and smiles. “Funny you should mention that. I’ve met someone new, and I’ve decided to retire.”

“What?” Everett blurts out.

“What Everett means is…what the hell, Dad?” I exclaim. “We haven’t even met her and you’re suddenly going to retire just so you can be with her? Are you two engaged? Is it… It is a woman, right?”

My father rolls his eyes. “Prissy is most definitely a woman. And not that it’s any of your business, but, yes, we are engaged. As for you two meeting her, I’ve already scheduled a dinner for noon on Sunday.” He pauses to appreciate our slack-jawed expressions for a moment, then continues. “As for the ultimatum… Now that I’m retiring, I’ll need one of you to take the majority share in the company, as I won’t have much time for board meetings once Prissy and I are traveling.”

Everett laughs, setting his tumbler on the desk and combing his fingers through his dark hair as he leans back in the chair. “I accept. Rest assured the company will be in good hands.”

I roll my eyes. “A little quick on the draw there, Everett. You might want to button the snap on the old bribery holster and let him finish. Besides, Father knows I’m clearly the better brother for the job.”

“Better at what?” Everett bellows.

“Oh, I think we know what you’re better at, Logan. All of New York knows what you’re better at,” my father continues, his nostrils flaring with exasperation. “As I was saying, I just struck a deal with Kensington Publishing. I have your uncle working on their fitness magazine division, but I want you to work on putting together a business revitalization plan for their nature magazine, Open Sky,” he says to Everett. “And you, Logan, will be making a plan for their celebrity gossip magazine, Close-Up.”

“You’ve got to be kidding me. That rag has dumped on me for years, and now I’m supposed to save them from bankruptcy?” I protest, my voice jumping at least two octaves like a child protesting chores.

Close-Up magazine used to be the most popular celebrity gossip rag on the shelf, until some antiquated marketing tactics and bad management failed to deliver them into the digital age. Now they’ve apparently sold out to my father in a last ditch effort to save themselves from bankruptcy. That means it’s our responsibility to do what their upper management should have done years ago and hope it’s not too late.

Our company doesn’t usually buy out another company with the intention of revamping them. Sure, we will usually pitch that as a good possibility. But most of the time, we break up the company, lay off scores of employees to cut costs, and liquidate all assets before moving on.

But trying to save a company is no small feat. And trying to save a celebrity lifestyle magazine like Close-Up… Well, let’s just say this is not my father’s usual modus operandi. This Prissy woman must be making him soft.

“I’m aware both of these companies will present many obstacles for you two. But I’m certain you’ll rise to the challenge. Whoever’s plan has the most positive effect on the bottom line at the end of thirty days will be awarded the majority share in Angel Investments.”

“Thirty days?” Everett exclaims. “Surely, you must be joking. We can’t do this in thirty days.”

My father drains the rest of the bourbon in his glass then leans back in his tufted mahogany leather chair. “I have faith in you both. Just keep your bribes to yourself, Everett. And you,” he says, glaring at me. “Keep your hands to yourself. Don’t let me down.”

* * *

I enter my office and immediately make a call to beckon my assistant Nora. “Close the door,” I say as soon as she arrives.

She shuts the door softly and turns to face me, her auburn hair framing her eager face as she holds her mobile phone behind her back. “What can I help you with, sir?”

Nora is a great assistant. She wears her hair down to hide the custom-fitted Bluetooth earpiece-slash-microphone in her ear. It records every command I give her, so she can replay our conversations in the event she forgets what she was told to do. I don’t want this conversation recorded.

I tap my ear and say, “Give it to me.”

She doesn’t hesitate as she removes the gel earpiece and places it on my desk in front of me.

“And the phone.”

She places her iPhone next to it.

I quickly snatch it up and power off the phone before I begin. “I have a special project for you, but no one can know about this. Do you understand?”

She mimes pulling a zipper across her lips. “My lips are sealed.”

“Good,” I say, motioning to the chair across from me. “Have a seat.”

About Cassia Leo

New York Times bestselling author Cassia Leo loves her coffee, chocolate, and margaritas with salt. When she’s not writing, she spends way too much time re-watching Game of Thrones and Sex and the City. When she’s not binge watching, she’s usually enjoying the Oregon rain with a hot cup of coffee and a book.

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Check out my review here: https://sweetheartreads.com/2018/11/12/book-review-raise-your-game-by-cassia-leo

Book Review ~ Raise your game by Cassia Leo

I received an ARC of Raise your game by Cassia Leo and it was amazing! I loved everything about the book! The banter between the couple was so real, like they were a real couple. There are several books out there about pretend couples who fall in love but this one stands out. They go to a couples sex retreat to find intimacy again and have to pretend to be a real married couple with problems. That was no problem for these two who bickered like a married couple all the time! Unlike with other books, I didn’t fall in love with Logan until the very end of the book, until then he was just a guy. Sophie though, she was great! I would love to have her personality and to meet her in real life. It’s usually the male character I want in my life but not with this book.

I can’t wait to read this book again, I will definitely be buying a copy to support the author and looking into her other books. She has a great writing style and I loved every minute of reading this book. Definite 5 star read!

Audio Review ~ Unzipped by Lauren Blakely

51EK1BaXYeL._SL500__AC_PIAdblRomanceBadge88px,TopRight,0,0_US500_QL100_Unzipped is an audio first audio book by Lauren Blakely. It’s only the 3rd audio book Ive listened to before reading the book first. The narrators; Joe Arden and Andi Arndt are perfect for this romantic comedy. The story is about a guy, Kyler, looking to reunite with his college girl friend after 8 years. She broke up with him and told him to come find her when he gets his act together. He does just that with a grand gesture, problem is it’s not his ex girlfriend Cassandra who he tries to woo with a grand gesture to win back, it’s Finley.

I loved everything about this book. It was the perfect romantic comedy about 2 nerdy people who find love the unconventional way. Like many men, Kyler is clueless when it comes to women, it’s quite funny. There were many times you were yelling at Kyler for something he said or did but in the end they made you laugh.

With audio books I can only listen in the car, they are too distracting otherwise or I’m not able to fully pay attention to the narration and miss things that are said so it takes me a week to listen to an audio book where I can read the book in 1-2 days. I enjoy hearing the personality of the characters when listening to audio books, it’s a different experience than trying to picture their voice in your head and one I’m starting to love with all my favorite one click authors publishing audio first audio books and I can’t wait to go back and read this book and see if the voices will be that of Joe and Andi or if I will come up with voices on my own.

I highly recommend this audio book, the narrators were perfect, as was the story.

Book Review ~ Let’s Get Textual by Teagan Hunter

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Let’s get Textual was the best romantic comedy book I’ve ever read. I laughed out loud so many times while reading this book I lost count. Zach and Delia’s text exchange back and forth was so funny! They talked like they were old friends and not strangers.

Teagan Hunter is a new author to me. I saw this book on an inkslinger promo and the synopsis of the book had be hooked. It was a quick and easy read, the perfect book to get you over that book hangover and definitely a book I will be reading again and again. I can’t wait to start I wanna text you up, Delia’s best friend and roommate Zoe’s story, in fact i’ll probably dig in today!

Definite 5 star read and a book you will want to read over and over again.

Once upon a real good time by Lauren Blakely

41746809When I started Once Upon a real good time I instantly fell in love with Campbell and Mackenzie. It was such a treat to read a romance story about a couple who are in their mid thirties like myself. Often romance books are about single twenty somethings falling in love for the first time but this story was about thirty something single parents who turn their one night stand into more.

I have to say after reading the 2 bonus epilogues I was disappointed with the ending. I saw Lauren taking the book in 1 direction to end but she took it in another. I just read the bonus scene and now I know why the book ended the way it did. I’m happy again and I hope like with other standalone series we get to hear from this amazing couple in Cambell’s brother, Miller’s story Once upon a while thing. Make sure you read to the end of once upon a real good time, there’s a link for the bonus scene and the synopsis of Once upon a while thing.

The one thing I love about Lauren’s books is her ability to make you laugh and get all hot and bothered the next. She writes amazing romantic comedies that make you laugh out loud and swoon and this book was no different. A definite 5 star must read.

Well Hung – Lauren Blakeley

If you read Mister O and Big Rock and loved them then you will enjoy Well Hung by Lauren Blakeley. It’s the third book in the Men of Rom Com series told in the male point of view. The book can be read as a standalone. This story is about Wyatt, Nick Hammer’s brother (from Mister O) and Natalie, who is Charlotte’s sister from Big Rock. Natalie is off limits to Nick because she is his assistant at his construction business but he’s been attracted to her since he met her. They end up in Vegas on business together and decide on 1 night of breaking the rules and things can go back to normal once the sun goes up. They do some crazy things while in Vegas, one of which is getting hitched! Can things really go back to normal when the sun comes up the next day and they return to New York?

This book was hilarious. The stories keep getting better. These men are so cocky; you can’t help but laugh at them. Lauren puts some new twists on things in this book that I’ve never seen before that keeps you coming back for more. I love how Wyatt and Natalie are perfect for each other, they have the same sense of adventure, in and outside of the bedroom, they are the quirky couple and you are rooting for them to be together the entire time. There’s a big surprise ending that you don’t see coming. I’ve read enough romance novels to have a good sense of where the author is going but with this book I was surprised the entire time. It was a great read and I’m excited for The sexy one and Full package which is a story that features Nick and Wyatt’s little sister Josie so you know it’s going to be a good one. The poor sucker who falls for her, I can’t wait!

Mister O

Mister O by Lauren Blakley 306 pages

5 star review!

This book was super easy to read and I had a hard time putting the book down. I was disappointed when it was finished, not because the ending wasn’t good but because Nick and Harper’s story was over. I hope we get a little more Nick and Harper with Nick’s brother’s book, the next book in this standalone series.

Mister O is a standalone romantic comedy that follows some of the same characters as her first romantic comedy Big Rock. It’s told in the male POV. If you enjoyed reading Spencer in Big Rock you will love Nick more. Nick is not your typical romance god. He’s not a playboy – he actually describes himself as a serial monogamist. He’s not full of himself like most of our romance gods. He’s good at sex because he know’s how to read women’s cues on what they like and don’t like and he’s a very generous lover, always making his woman cum at least 3 times to his single orgasm. To sum it up, he’s the perfect man and he’s well hung too! Nick has eyes for his best friend, Spencer’s little sister, Harper but she’s off limits.

Harper is a magician and spends most of her time entertaining children. She’s inexperienced with men and doesn’t have the slightest clue on how to talk around the opposite sex whom she’s attracted too so Harper asks Nick to be her dating tutor after he witnesses the way she blushes and can’t get the words out to speak to the man she’s interested in. Nick agree’s and the start spending more time together. I very much enjoyed reading the male POV in this book, it’s great to read what you think is going through a man’s mind when he’s crushing on you.

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Pucked Over by Helena Hunting

If you enjoy a good sports romance, this book is a must read.  The book has humor, a bit of emotion and sex. It’s a stand alone book that is part of a series about hockey and romance. Randy Ballistic is not looking for a girlfriend. His father, a former pro hockey player, messed around on his mother every time the team was away from home and Randy doesn’t want this to happen to him. He meet’s Lilly, his best friend, Millers’, girlfriend’s best friend. She’s just getting out of a on again off again relationship and Randy offers her a easy and fun rebound relationship that consists of nothing but a lot of sex. You know, the typical romance novel we read over and over again. But what makes this one different from all the others is the humor in it and maybe all the reference to Canada. The series is about the Chicago Blackhawks but the first book’s hero is from the Toronto Ontario area and Helena Hunting is a Canadian author. The fun turns into real feelings but for who?

This is the third book in the series. I really hope there is a book about Charlene, Violets friend and Miller, Randy’s teammate on Chicago so we can get a gimps of the quiet, shy hockey player and read more about the other 3 couples and how they’ve progressed since we last read about them. I liked how Helena brought each of the couples from her other 2 books in this series into each book and managed to keep the book’s focus on the main couple, Randy and Lilly.

I really enjoyed this book. The dual point of view keeps you hooked and wanting to read the next chapter. I hesitated in reading this book because I didn’t enjoy the previous book. Lilly was a snob and I hated Sunny, the heroine of the book. She made a limited appearance in this book, which was great. What I did like about her was how she didn’t talk trash about Randy. She encouraged her friend to give it a shot with Randy, thought a little fling with him was just what she needed to get over her on again off again relationship with her ex.

I rate this book 4 out of 5. I didn’t love it, but I didn’t hate it.

 

Big Rock by Lauren Blakely

 

Big Rock was amazing. The book is told Spencer, the male character, point of view only. Spencer has the reputation as New York City’s playboy with no plans to ever settle down with someone. Spencer’s father owns a popular jewelry store chain and is looking to sell it. His potential new buyer is big on family values so Spencer’s dad has asked him to lay low for the week and stay out of the gossip magazines as New York’s noted playboy. In an effort to impress this new buyer and help his dad out Spencer decides to fake being engaged to his best friend Charlotte for the week.

I really enjoyed reading this book. It was great reading a romance novel from only the male’s point of view. Spencer is a typical guy, cocky and full of himself. He makes you laugh throughout the whole book with the thoughts that go through his mind. There is a lot of descriptive sex and I like that in a romance novel. I loved the way Lauren ended this book, it left me satisfied and in awe. I rate this book 5 out of 5.