Source: Author

FACE-OFF AT THE ALTAR by Toni Aleo

I received this book for free from Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Author
FACE-OFF AT THE ALTAR by Toni AleoFace Off At The Altar by Toni Aleo
Series: Assassin's #9
Published by Self Published Genres: Contemporary, Sports


 

I can’t believe Face-Off at the Alter is the ninth book in the Assassins series. Ever since I started this series I have looked forward to each and every book and this one was no different. I was wondering whose story would be next so when it was announced that it was going to be Markus and Mekena I was pleasantly surprised Toni Aleo was going to give them a second chance at happily ever after.

 

To give you a little background on Markus and Mekena if you haven’t read the previous books, they dated in college but then he broke her heart after betraying her. After college Mekena moved to Jacksonville and became a photographer while Markus has been trying to get his break in the NHL. It has been some time since they have seen one another, but with Lucy and Benji’s wedding coming up they will inevitably come face to face with one another again.

 

Markus Reeves always planned to make it in the NHL but he is unhappy playing for the Assassins farm team down in Florida. He misses his family and friends, not to mention he seems to be stuck in a rut on the ice. When offered the chance to finally show he has what it takes to be the best for the league, he feels this could be his one chance to show the world what he can do. In order to move on he also has to make amends with Mekena, not only for the wedding coming up but also to help get his head back in the game. His love for her hasn’t faded but he didn’t expect after all this time to still feel the same he just hopes now that she can finally forgive him and give them a second chance.

 

Mekena Preston was hurt by Markus’ betrayal with her sister and after fleeing Nashville she still isn’t over the man who broke her heart. She agreed to be Lucy’s photographer for her big day to Benji and Mekena knows Markus will be there because he is a honorary member of the Sinclair family since he is Jace’s best friend. She isn’t over him but she needs to finally understand what happened between them and why he did what he did. The reason behind the betrayal will be reveled and people will be hurt even more but can their true love withstand what is about to come when it’s just getting started?

 

Mekena and Markus’ story was touching and I loved how it really blossomed. They both were obviously still in love and miserable without one another so I was really rooting for them to talk about what happened and begin their future. What I didn’t expect was how it happened but I really thought Ms. Aleo did an excellent job taking on the subject matter and showing the stages of not only forgiveness and acceptance but healing and looking toward the future. I have to admit there was more humor than I expected but I was grateful that my eyes didn’t get too swollen from the tears that kept falling.

 

At times I felt that Face-Off at the Alter was a bit on the long side but then I could see how this story needed so many details because a lot happened. Not only is Mekena dealing with trying to trust Markus again but she is also dealing with some family issues that were caused by that betrayal.

 

Face-Off at the Alter is a mix of Ms. Aleo’s Assassin series and the Bellevue Bullies series which I just loved. I enjoyed getting to revisit some of my favorite characters. Some of my favorite parts of this book were when the group were all together having a good time since they are truly one big family. But most of all this was a second chance romance that was filled with drama, emotions and a romance that needed a little TLC. Overall, I felt Face-Off at the Alter was a great addition to this series and I’m already looking forward to the next one.

 

SEAL OF A LIFETIME by Virna DePaul

I received this book for free from Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Author
SEAL OF A LIFETIME by Virna DePaulSEAL of a Lifetime by Virna DePaul
Published by Self Published Genres: Contemporary
 



 

Mitch Trenton is a Navy SEAL who was injured while on the battlefield, and he is determined to get himself back with his team.  Being shipped back stateside for recovery, Mitch is about to meet another physical therapist who has gained a reputation for getting people back on their feet.  Mitch is all set to put in as much hard work as needed to accomplish his goals, but he is struck sideways after meeting his new therapist and the instant attraction that appears.

 

Paige O’Kelly has worked hard to gain her reputation as a physical therapist and is about to try for the job of her dreams at John Hopkins.  But for now, she has been assigned a new patient who will need her help to be able to walk again unaided, much less go back to active military duty.  When Paige meets Mitch, she is struck by his good looks, cocky attitude, and she automatically says no to his date requests.

 

As their sessions go on, eventually Mitch wears Paige down and she does agree to a date.  One thing leads to another and Paige realizes that she is attracted to Mitch and, because of their situation, knows she must either end their professional or their personal relationship.  Mitch agrees to a new therapist rather than lose Paige.  But all is not paradise when Mitch pushes his new therapist for approval to be activated back to duty, and Paige’s dream of working at John Hopkins is put at risk by their relationship.  Paige knows she is risking everything when she questions Mitch’s active duty approval by the therapist, but she’d rather lose Mitch than have him hurt or even killed by moving too fast.  It takes serious heart-to-heart talking and airing out all of the hurts and possible betrayals but, in the end, Mitch and Paige learn just what love and trust really mean.

 

A physical therapist and an injured Navy SEAL will travel the rough and tumble road to true love in SEAL of a Lifetime. I felt for Mitch and how he was single-minded in his goal at getting back to his team.  I also felt for Paige for how she was trying so hard to keep her professional ethics while working with Mitch, and I loved how she finally had him transferred to another person when their relationship turned romantic.  My heart broke for both of them as they were hit by betrayals and rough bumps on achieving their respective professional dreams.  But I really loved how they were able to work through it all and find their way back to each other and their love.  SEALof a Lifetime proves that not all journeys to love are bright and shiny.  Sometimes it’s hard and gritty and full of potholes, but if it really matters, then you can find a way.

 

BREAKING AWAY by Toni Aleo

I received this book for free from Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Author
BREAKING AWAY by Toni AleoBreaking Away by Toni Aleo
Series: Assassins #5
Published by Self Published Genres: Contemporary, Sports
reviewedbydani

 

I’m going to go all fan girl here and scream, Phillip is the man!! Breaking Away was more than enjoyable and omg, he ends up with Reese?!!! Not only was I shocked but I was pleasantly surprised at their pairing. I liked Reese in the previous Assassins books and knew it would take someone special to really catch her eye.  Phillip was just the man for the job. Neither are looking for anything serious, each for their own reasons. Reece was deeply hurt by an ex, Phillip is busy raising his niece, Claire and needs to focus on her needs. As Reese teaches Claire to dance, these two ladies really connected. Things get a bit complicated but they can’t stay away from one another, which made Breaking Away an even more enjoyable read.

 

While the relationship between Phillip and Reese is a big part of the book, it wasn’t just all about them. I loved the blossoming relationship between Phillip and Claire, he loves her and really wants the best for her. Phillip and Reese start to get closer and that’s truly when their relationship starts to progress and really take off. It’s during this time that Claire starts accepting Phillip as her guardian and begins to start feeling a deep bond between them. Claire was a typical teenager who is  hurting from the loss of her mother as well as having just had her whole life uprooted. Phillip made sure she knew she was loved and wanted, that made me love him even more.

 

Reese and Phillip as a couple are hotter than hot. They steamed up the pages and had some of the best chemistry I have read in the Assassin series. What started off as just sex grew into much more. I loved that Ms. Aleo had Phillip be the first to fall in love because normally it’s the heroine who falls first. There were many moments where I started to fall for Phillip right alongside Reese. He just did and said some of the sweetest things which was nothing like the Phillip I got to know from the previous Assassins books. In prior books, Phillip came off as a player, so it was a nice change to see him in such a postive light.

 

Reese did have her annoying moments but she finally came around. Thank god because if she didn’t want him I would have gladly taken him off her hands. Phillip had this confidence about him that grabbed me from the moment he was introduced in prior books and I really liked that he was unsure of himself with Reese and how to move forward.

 

Hands down Breaking Away was a great addition to an already amazing series. Each book in the series is a little different depending on the characters situations, which each title being a unique read. Ms. Aleo brings her characters to life and gives them real problems that people face with every day. Phillip losing his sister and having to raise a teenager all while playing for the NHL was damn impressive, but what really stood out was how hard he was trying to make her life better. I’m glad Claire will be receiving her own book in time because I can’t wait to see how she turns out and who will be her love interest.

 

MIDNIGHT QUEST by Lisa Marie Rice

I received this book for free from Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Author
MIDNIGHT QUEST by Lisa Marie RiceMidnight Quest by Lisa Marie Rice
Series: Men of Midnight #4.5
Published by Self Published Genres: Contemporary, Suspense
ReviewedbyJo

 

Morton “Jacko” Jackman is an ex-Navy SEAL who now works for ASI, a top security firm who works worldwide for its clients.  He has just come home from an assignment more than ready to see his love, Lauren, after being away.  Jacko is hoping to ask her to marry him, because he really can’t think of a future without her in it.  However, before he has a chance to do more than have a great night together, his world comes crashing down when he learns that Lauren is pregnant.

 

Lauren Dare is a graphic designer who does book covers, among other things.  Lauren met and fell in love with Jacko, and they have been together ever since.  While she worries when Jacko is gone in his assignments, she knows that his work is what he was always meant to do.  This time, she is waiting for him to come home, because she has wonderful news to tell him—at least she thought so until Jacko reacts as he does.

 

Jacko has never wanted children, and when he finds out that Lauren is expecting, all of his fears come forward forcefully.  Jacko knows that before he can work around to being a father, he needs to learn about his life, his mother’s past, and his father.  To do this, Jacko begins a journey that first leads him to a place he never wanted to see again—his hometown—and then to a surprising discovery of his mother’s family and an even more surprising discovery.  When Jacko heads home, he is ready to step up and be the man that Lauren and his child will need.  But his journey has had another effect which will bring deadly danger to Jacko and Lauren.  A fierce battle will finally answer the last of Jacko’s questions in the open and will give both Jacko and Lauren another piece to their future.

 

A quietly dangerous man seeks answers about his and his parents’ pasts when facing parenthood in Midnight Quest.  Jacko only knows the bad about his mother and never knew anything really about his father, so when he finds out that he and his lover are expecting a child, he begins a journey to learn the truth and quiet the night terrors.  Lauren has always been supportive of Jacko, and that doesn’t change when he disappears after learning about her expecting their child.  I have to admit that I was extremely disappointed in how Jacko handled things and that he just took off without any word to Lauren.  Seeing Lauren having to hold things together and hoping that all would end well and that their love would bring Jacko back had me really wanting to shake him more than once.  I also felt that this story was centered only on Jacko and Lauren was there as background only.  No, I never doubted that Jacko loved Lauren deeply, or that he would come back to her just how he treated her after her announcement.  However, I will give him points for taking control when the danger that followed him home hit hard, threatening both their lives.

 

I have really enjoyed the Midnight Man series, but I had to admit that I was mostly disappointed in this short story.  Midnight Quest is a man’s hunt about his past while hoping for his future with his lover.

 

I’M GONNA LOVE YOU by Virna DePaul

I received this book for free from Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Source: Author
I’M GONNA LOVE YOU by Virna DePaulI'm Gonna Love You by Virna DePaul
Series: Home to Green Valley #3
Published by Self Published Genres: Contemporary
ReviewedbyJo

 

Anna Kincaid has escaped a serious health issue and because she never knows when something might change that, she has decided to live life at full strength ahead.  So, she opened an eco-adventure company to give others the same thrills she is looking for.  Anna loves her job and company, but she also is still striving forward in accomplishing her personal bucket list.  One of those items brings her up close and very personal with one of the sexy O’Neill brothers from Ireland.

 

Brady O’Neill is the second oldest of the five brothers.  Brady is the only brother who has been married and lost it all.  He made the decision to move to California and help his oldest brother with a new restaurant as one of the co-owners.  Brady believes that he is ready to move on, but is he really ready to accept the chance at loving and losing yet again?  That question becomes front and center when he meets Anna in a way that brings his passions alive again.

 

Anna wants Brady and her to go at a rushing speed, while Brady wants to slow things down when he learns exactly what she wants.  Brady discovers that he buried an important part of his life when he married, and Anna is torn between jumping in with no holds barred and taking the time to get it all right.  Brady watched as reckless risks harmed his family’s restaurant in Ireland and, because of that, he points out things that might have the same risks in Anna’s business.  Anna continues to wonder about her push and pull relationship with Brady when the health threat from her past rears its ugly head again.  As Anna and Brady learn more about each other, secrets and misunderstands might just be able to tear them apart.  Both Anna and Brady discover just how important trust is when beginning a serious relationship as the secrets are revealed and the misunderstandings are resolved.  Anna and Brady are finally ready to go forward, hand in hand, towards their future filled with the passion for adventure and each other with their eyes open.  Their future is looking brighter than ever, and so is their love.

 

A woman racing toward the next adventure and a man trying to find a way to go forward again discover the true meaning of love and trust in I’m Gonna Love You.  I had to laugh at the way Anna and Brady met and was a bit surprised at the rush of that evening.  I enjoyed watching as Brady showed Anna that the best part of being together is discovering each other.  While I understood the reason behind Anna’s rush in life, I was worried that she might take one risk too many and felt sorry for her when the past came to call.  I loved how Brady not only found the strength he needed to move forward with Anna, but also to show Anna that life was just as good, if not better, when done at a normal pace.  Even with the misunderstandings that can happen during the beginning of a relationship, I quickly came to see that Anna and Brady had something that would not only last, but grow stronger as the years went on.  I’m Gonna Love You is a book about discovering love and taking the steps necessary to keep it strong and growing, even when life throws you a curve ball.  Yet another excellent book in this series.

 

HARD TO BREAK by Bella Jewel

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SLOW BURN by Pamela Clare

SLOW BURN by Pamela Clare

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DIRTY SEXY SINNER by Carly Phillips & Erika Wilde

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THE GOAL by Elle Kennedy

THE GOAL by Elle Kennedy

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WHAT LOVE CAN DO by Virna DePaul

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THE WAY LOVE GOES by Virna DePaul

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KELLEN’S TEMPTING MATE by Elle Boon

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XAN’S FIESTY MATE by Elle Boon

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STAR CROSSED by Emma Holly

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STEEL RUSH by P. T. Michelle

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HEART OF A HUNTER by Lara Adrian

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ALL THEY EVER WANTED by Tracy Solheim

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THE TYCOON’S SOCIALITE BRIDE by Tracey Livesay

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HARDER THAN WORDS by Carrie Ann Ryan

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I’VE GOT YOUR SIX by Erosa Knowles

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