Twist by Kylie Scott

Twist (Dive Bar #2)
by Kylie Scott (Goodreads, Twitter, Website)
Published by Pan Macmillan on April 11th 2017
Genres: Romance, Contemporary
Amazon | Barnes & Noble 
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From New York Times bestselling author Kylie Scott comes the second sizzling stand-alone novel in the Dive Bar series!

When his younger brother loses interest in online dating, hot bearded bartender Joe Collins only intends to log into his account and shut it down. Until he reads about her.

Alex Parks is funny, fascinating, and pretty much everything he's been looking for in a woman—except that she lives across the country. Soon they're emailing up a storm and telling each other their deepest, darkest secrets...except the one that really matters.

When Alex pays Joe a surprise visit, however, they both discover that when it comes to love, it's always better with a twist.

The Stage Dive boys will forever have a special place in my heart, but it’s definitely time for them to step aside because Kylie Scott has moved from sexy and jaw-dropping rockstars to hot and gritty bartenders of the Dive Bar in Coeur D'Alene.

Upon arriving in Coeur D'Alene unannounced, Seattle girl Alex Parks is in for the surprise of her life once she finds out her long-time online pen pal isn’t the person who she expected him to be. He isn’t Eric Collins, the guy with the charming smile from the dating website, but rather, his older brother, Joe Collins, bartender for the Dive Bar and the total opposite of his little brother. Once Alex finds out, she’s furious with her attraction towards ‘Eric’ flushed down the drain. But while Joe tries to convince Alex that he meant no harm and only wanted a friend, things start to get really complicated after new feelings begin to ignite between the duo.

Twist, by far, is my favourite of the Dive Bar series. Joe and Alex have nearly managed to knock out Jimmy and Lena (Lead) from the top spot by a slight margin (these two will always have a special space in my heart). Alex’s character is refreshing. She’s sarcastic and snarky but does showcase a vulnerable side when she's often anxious about taking a step forward to a different direction in life. On the other hand, Joe is such a complicated character, but it wasn't hard to relate to him. He's the kind of guy who feels responsible for everything around him. While he's got the makings of an alpha male, he's a total giver and would drop everything in a heartbeat for family and friends. I can't stress how much I adored Joe's character. He's a sweetheart and a gentleman--the total package!

The romance between Joe and Alex was unique on my part, with Alex being a commitment-phobe when it comes to relationships. I love that it doesn't go with the 'romance norm' where it's usually the guys that sport that kind of attitude when it comes to relationships. I enjoyed how Alex and Joe's relationship developed through the course of the novel. Friends to lovers romances are my guilty pleasure.

Can we also applaud Kylie Scott for adding a trans character? YES! Alex's best friend, Valerie, formerly Vincent, would have to be my most favourite character in Twist. She's a total hoot and also plays a major role in Alex's life! Also, the novel wouldn't be complete without KS' dropping short side stories of other characters in the Dive Bar gang. Spoiler, the Stage Dive boys do make an appearance!

Kylie Scott’s writing has grown tremendously over the years, with every book she’s ever released and I’ve made it a point never to miss a single one. She never disappoints. All in All, Twist is an incredibly addicting read, with the perfect balance of humour, romance, and raw angst, that will keep you captivated with every turn of a page. If you haven't tried anything by this author and you're into romance reads, I'd hate to say this but you're definitely missing out--and we all know that's not a good thing.

Massive thanks to Pan Macmillan Australia for my ARC copy!

Walk of Shame by Lauren Layne + Excerpt & Giveaway!

Happy Book Birthday to Lauren Layne's new romcom baby, Walk of Shame, her fourth book from her Love Unexpectedly series! Tasty Book Tours have brought you a release blast, featuring my review, an exclusive excerpt and a chance to win a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC!

Walk of Shame
by Lauren Layne
Published by Loveswept on April 18th, 2017
Genres: Romance, Contemporary, New Adult
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Sparks fly between a misunderstood New York socialite and a cynical divorce lawyer in this lively standalone rom-com from the USA Today bestselling author of Blurred Lines and Love Story.

Pampered heiress Georgianna Watkins has a party-girl image to maintain, but all the shopping and clubbing is starting to feel a little bit hollow—and a whole lot lonely. Though Georgie would never admit it, the highlights of her week are the mornings when she comes home at the same time as her uptight, workaholic neighbor is leaving to hit the gym and put in a long day at the office. Teasing him is the most fun Georgie’s had in years—and the fuel for all her naughtiest daydreams.

Celebrity divorce attorney Andrew Mulroney doesn’t have much time for women, especially spoiled tabloid princesses who spend more time on Page Six than at an actual job. Although Georgie’s drop-dead gorgeous, she’s also everything Andrew resents: the type of girl who inherited her penthouse instead of earning it. But after Andrew caps one of their predawn sparring sessions with a surprise kiss—a kiss that’s caught on camera—all of Manhattan is gossiping about whether they’re a real couple. And nobody’s more surprised than Andrew to find that the answer just might be yes.


The romance comedy queen has done it again! Lauren Layne brings you an ‘opposites attract’ and ‘frenemies to lovers’ romcom featuring a carefree socialite and a jaded divorce attorney in Walk of Shame. Think Enchanted with a mix of Sex and the City—minus the evil queen, sidekick rodents and singing birds bit, because, really. This book made my cheeks hurt from all the grinning because this book would have to be her cutest to date!

Georgiana ‘Georgie’ Watkins might be a rich party girl, but she isn’t your stereotypical socialite. She’s an absolute sweetheart to everyone she knows. All except for her neighbor, Andrew Mulroney, the stoic divorce attorney who lives his life in a routine, which goes against every spontaneous bone in Georgie’s body. Add in the fact that he refuses to call her by her nickname and that he looks at her like she’s the most ‘ridiculous’ thing on the face of the earth.

I can’t express how much I love Georgie and Andrew. So far, these two are my favorite Lauren Layne couple yet. Although Georgie’s lifestyle differed from the typical heroine, she’s not hard to relate to. Despite being an heiress, this cupcake is definitely no spoiled brat. She’s charming, warm-hearted and absolutely lovable, and no doubt you’d surely want to be her best friend. Warming up to Andrew’s character wasn’t easy. He’s a tough nut to crack, and clearly, he's got issues. Think a more cynic version of Patrick Dempsey's character in Enchanted. He's aloof, stoic and adorably awkward when it comes to dealing with Georgie, which often leads to their daily 5 am sarcastic jabs and teasing at the lobby.

Lauren Layne's writing keeps getting better with every book she releases. I adored the romance in this novel, particularly the slow burn between Georgie and Andrew, coupled with hilarious witty banter. I can't stress how much I enjoy Layne's style when it comes to writing slow burn romances and Walk of Shame definitely takes the cake. The only problem I had with this novel was how their problems were resolved nearly a little too quickly.

If you're looking for a quick romcom read, Walk of Shame is the right novel for you. It's sexy, hilarious and has the right amount of angst—everything I look for in a romance! Perfect for fans of Julie James, Jessica Lemmon and Lauren Blakely!

Massive thanks to Loveswept for my ARC copy!




READ AN EXCERPT

And who is he, you ask?

Andrew Mulroney, Esquire.

I know this because we moved into the building on the exact same day, and right before we got into a horrendous fight over whose movers should have access to the building loading dock first, he handed me his business card.

The thick white card stock declared that he had a fancy law degree to go along with the fancy suit he was wearing on a Saturday.

Andrew handed it over with such superiority, I actually wished for a half second that I had a business card of my own that would somehow be better than his. Like, lined with gold or something. No, platinum. With a diamond in the corner. It would be too heavy for him to hold, and he’d drop it, thus having to kneel at my feet to pick it up.

But then I realized it was just as well that I didn’t have a business card.

Because it would say . . . what? Georgie Watkins, professional party girl?

Anyway, I digress. Despite the high temps of that swampy July morning, the encounter had been the start of an epic cold war.

Me, the socialite in apartment 86A against the uptight esquire in apartment 79B.

I’m not entirely sure I’m winning the war, but I’ll never tell him that.

I let my gaze drift over Andrew, even though his appearance rarely holds any surprises. The man’s a lesson in sameness, like some sort of anal-retentive version of Groundhog Day.

There’s always the black mug with some healthy gunk inside held in his right hand, Tom Ford briefcase and Armani garment bag in his left, containing what I know to be a perfectly tailored three-piece suit.

Andrew’s coppery hair is perfectly styled, although I’d swear that there’s some natural curl in there threatening to disrupt his perfect order. I imagine that annoys him, so it therefore makes me happy.

Let’s see, what else about my nemesis?

He’s got a hard, unfriendly jawline that’s perfectly shaven.

Dark brown eyes, cold and flat. Black gym bag over one shoulder.

I suppose you could say he changes up his attire, because he does alternate between black and gray gym shirts. But considering that they seem to be the exact same fit, both colors molding perfectly to his impressively sculpted upper body, we’re not giving him any points for variety there.

Same goes for the lower half. The black shorts worn in summer have given way to sleek black sweatpants now that October’s upon us, but they’re both black and Nike, so we’ll give him no credit for changing it up there either.

The shoes, though . . .

I do a double take.

Well, well, well . . .

Instead of the usual black gym shoes, the man’s shoes are red. I don’t know how I missed it before.

I drag my eyes back up his body with a grin, and he gives just the slightest roll of his eyes to indicate that he’s noticed my slow perusal and isn’t fazed in the least.

“You went shopping, Dorothy!” I say happily.

He stares at me. “I don’t shop.”

Of course not. Far too frivolous.

“No, that makes sense,” I say, pointing at his feet. “Glinda would have given these to you.”

Andrew looks down at his Rolex watch. “I’ve got to go. Have a good day, Mr. Ramirez.”

“You too, Mr. Mulroney,” Ramon says with a deferential nod. “Enjoy your workout.”

“Yes, do,” I say, turning and watching as Andrew moves toward the front door of our building. “What’s on the schedule today? Treadmill, or just skipping down the Yellow Brick Road?”

Andrew Mulroney, Esquire, doesn’t respond. He doesn’t even turn before pushing through the revolving doors and stepping out into the still-dark autumn morning.

Now come on. Tell me that wasn’t at least a little bit fun, despite the ungodly hour.


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


LAUREN LAYNE 
Website |  Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen romantic comedies.

A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011 to pursue a full-time writing career.

She lives in midtown Manhattan with her high-school sweetheart, where she writes smart romantic comedies with just enough sexy-times to make your mother blush. In LL's ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.

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Royally Screwed by Emma Chase

Royally Screwed (Royally #1)
by Emma Chase (Goodreads, Twitter, Website)
Published by EverAfter Romance on October 18th, 2016
Genres: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary, Humor
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Book Depository
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Nicholas Arthur Frederick Edward Pembrook, Crowned Prince of Wessco, aka His Royal Hotness, is wickedly charming, devastatingly handsome, and unabashedly arrogant; hard not to be when people are constantly bowing down to you.

Then, one snowy night in Manhattan, the prince meets a dark haired beauty who doesn't bow down. Instead, she throws a pie in his face.

Nicholas wants to find out if she tastes as good as her pie, and this heir apparent is used to getting what he wants.

Dating a prince isn't what waitress Olivia Hammond ever imagined it would be.

There's a disapproving queen, a wildly inappropriate spare heir, relentless paparazzi, and brutal public scrutiny. While they've traded in horse drawn carriages for Rolls Royces, and haven't chopped anyone's head off lately, the royals are far from accepting of this commoner.

But to Olivia, Nicholas is worth it.

Nicholas grew up with the whole world watching, and now Marriage Watch is in full force. In the end, Nicholas has to decide who he is and, more importantly, who he wants to be: a King... or the man who gets to love Olivia forever.

I'M BACK FROM THE BLOGGING DEAD, Y'ALL! Figuratively. Hah! I'm so glad I finally got back my mojo to write reviews again and I'm really hoping this continues especially with all these awesome upcoming releases!

Emma Chase is turning into one of my favorite NA authors even though I’ve only read a few of her books. So far, Tangled is still her best yet. That book definitely set the bar real high, but Royally Screwed almost reached the top… Keyword: almost.

Emma Chase brings us a touching, swoon worthy and hilarious fairytale romance in Royally Screwed. Think modern day Cinderella. We’ve got Prince Nicholas Pembrook taking an interest in ordinary waitress Olivia Hammond who works nine to five, selling pies in her family cafĂ©. A little push and pull, witty banter and sexual tension, then bam. Hot. Steamy. Sex. And weeks of pure bliss. But there’s a catch—Prince Nicholas needs to marry a fellow blue blood after six months then produce an heir. How’s that going to work for our Prince Charming and Cinderella?

The characters, although a little over the top, are realistic and captivating. Royally Screwed is written in Nicholas and Olivia’s interchanging POVs, but I definitely loved reading from Nicholas’ POV more. Chase writes the best male POV chapters. She definitely has the conceited-asshole-but-has-a-mushy-heart hero voice on point. Despite being a prince, Nicholas is absolutely brash, arrogant and a dirty talking sex-on-a-stick hero with a British accent, especially when it comes to Olivia. He’s sweet and charming, but he’s got his crass moments. I love how relatable Olivia’s personality is. She’s sassy, kind, down to earth and absolutely independent.

The romance in Royally Screwed is straight up swoony, steamy, sexy with a little bit of angst—everything I expect in an Emma Chase novel! I enjoyed Nicholas and Olivia as their own characters but together, these two are just explosive and off the charts hot!

Let’s not forget the star of this series’ second installment, Royally Matched. We already get to know a lot about Prince Henry, the younger royal with the party boy lifestyle, but I’m certain there’s more to him than that. He’s a real hoot too, so I’m excited to read his story! The minor characters are also hilarious to read. I enjoyed Nicholas’ bodyguards and Olivia’s sister, Ellie. I’m so sure there’s going to be a book about her soon!

All in all, Royally Screwed is a hilarious and swoon-worthy read. But while I enjoyed Prince Nicholas, Drew from Tangled still takes the cake. It’s a fast-paced read and should you be going through a book slump, this book will definitely pull you back in. Recommended for fans of Lauren Blakely, Alice Clayton, and Penny Reid.

Roman Crazy by Alice Clayton & Nina Bocci - Italians do it better!

Roman Crazy (Broads Abroad #1)
by Alice Clayton (Goodreads, Twitter, Website) and Nina Bocci (Goodreads, Twitter, Website)
Published by Gallery Books on September 13th, 2016
Genres: Romance, Contemporary, New Adult, Chick Lit
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Kobo
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Avery Bardot steps off the plane in Rome, looking for a fresh start. She’s left behind a soon-to-be ex-husband in Boston and plans to spend the summer with her best friend Daisy, licking her wounds—and perhaps a gelato or two. But when her American-expat friend throws her a welcome party on her first night, Avery’s thrown for a loop when she sees a man she never thought she’d see again: Italian architect Marcello Bianchi.

Marcello was the man—the one who got away. And now her past is colliding with her present, a present where she should be mourning the loss of her marriage and—hey, that fettuccine is delicious! And so is Marcello…

Slipping easily into the good life of summertime in Rome, Avery spends her days exploring a city that makes art historians swoon, and her nights swooning over her unexpected what was old is new again romance. It’s heady, it’s fevered, it’s wanton, and it’s crazy. But could this really be her new life? Or is it just a temporary reprieve before returning to the land of twin-set cardigans and crustless sandwiches?

A celebration of great friendship, passionate romance, and wonderful food, Roman Crazy is a lighthearted story of second chances and living life to the fullest.


I’m writing this review for the second time, because the first time I did, I managed to ~stupidly~ delete it after posting it on the blog. Yay me. So in an attempt to rewrite the whole thing—to a T—it’s taken me ages to do so. So, while it doesn’t replicate my initial words, they both share the same sentiments: I’m crazy for Roman Crazy.

Roman Crazy kicks off with our heroine, Avery, headed to Italia to stay with her best friend in an attempt to ditch her cheating ex-husband and find herself again. But to her surprise, she meets Marcello, an old flame she left behind in Barcelona years ago. While they’ve changed through the years, there’s no denying the spark between still exists.

Alice Clayton and Nina Bocci’s joint debut novel is one of the perfect romances I’ve ever read. A romantic Italian adventure--through the cobblestone streets and vibrant Roman culture that satisfied the traveler in me. A story of self-discovery and second chances, it’s got the perfect balance between swoon and angst—topped with incredible sexual tension and hilarious banter and hot Italian men. Heh.

Avery’s character is a breath of fresh air. Escaping from her life as a trophy wife is one of the strongest things a woman can do. I adored how she was able to find herself again and transform into a headstrong, sassy and colorful person. Plus, the fact that Avery is an artist is a massive check in my book! Her beau, Marcello, on the other hand, is the dream Italian book boyfriend. Sweet and tender with a dominant side (lawd, help), he sure knows how to keep a reader charmed and swooning. I love how we get to meet his lively and spirited family, adding a cheerier feel to the book.

If you’re in a book slump and in need of some saving grace, Roman Crazy is just right for you. It’s a fast paced read that's so enthralling, sure enough to make you erupt in a fit of giggles with every turn of a page. It features the classic Alice Clayton laugh-out-loud humour, matched with delicious steamy and sexy scenes that will leave you wanting more… because Italians do it better (hah!). Clayton and Bocci make a great team and I can’t wait to read more by these two!

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To Love and To Cherish by Lauren Layne + Excerpt & GIveaway!

Lauren Layne has done it again! Her new series, the Wedding Belles, is her latest knockout in the chick lit genre and I can't wait to share with you all about her latest novel, To Love and Cherish! It's been out for a few days, so don't forget to grab a copy from Amazon! I've got a review, excerpt and giveaway on the line up, so stick around!

To Love and to Cherish (The Wedding Belles #3)
by Lauren Layne
Published by Pocket Books on October 18th, 2016.
Genres: Romance, Contemporary, Chick Lit



Sex and the City meets The Wedding Planner in The Wedding Belles, a contemporary and witty romance series about three high-powered New York City women who can plan any wedding—but their own.
Alexis Morgan has spent the past six years devoted to turning her tiny start-up into Manhattan’s premiere wedding planning company, The Wedding Belles. Now that her business is thriving, it’s time to turn towards her much neglected personal life, and Alexis approaches her relationships like she does everything else: with a plan. Not a part of that plan is Logan Harris, the silent partner in the Belles, and the one person who’s been there for her since the very beginning. But Alexis needs someone fun, and Logan’s all business, all the time—except when a late night at the office ends with an unexpected kiss that leaves the usually cool and together Alexis reeling.

Logan has lusted after Alexis since the day he walked into the tiny Harlem apartment that used to double as her office. But the ambitious wedding planner has always been untouchable...until now. Alexis has made it clear that she’s on the dating market—and equally clear that he’s not in the running. But when Alexis finds herself in need of a date for her sister’s last minute wedding in Florida, Logan knows it’s the perfect time to show Alexis that there’s more to him than numbers and spreadsheets—and beneath the pinstripes and glasses lies a hot-blooded heartthrob. As Florida’s sultry days turn into even hotter nights, Logan’s out to convince Alexis that the fling of a lifetime could just maybe turn into forever...

I received a review copy courtesy of the author/publisher. This does not affect my opinion or views regarding the book whatsoever.

Upon reading the Wedding Belles series, I thought the sequel, For Better or Worse, was the best yet. I loved Heather and Josh, but Alexis and Logan both have a special place in my heart--also because these two have teased readers for so long, it's about time they finally got their story! Lauren Layne’s last instalment of the Wedding Belles, To Love and To Cherish, takes on the classic friends to lovers, only riddled with a little bit of delicious angst that leaves a tender touch to the heart.

Alexis Morgan and Logan Harris have been nothing but friends for eight years, and while the chic entrepreneur’s already checked "career goals" off her to do list, Alexis is still yet to get to her main goal: fall in love and eventually walk down the aisle. She’s working on a redo in the love department, with a Tinder profile probably in the works and some help from her girlfriends to get her back in the dating game. Meanwhile, Logan Harris, accountant to the Wedding Belles, has been waiting oh, so patiently for a spot in his business partner’s heart. The question is, how much longer will he have to wait until she’s sees him more than just a friend?

It’s not everyday I get to read a romance where the hero has been pining for the heroine for a long time, and it’s definitely a refreshing take on the friends to lovers trope. Lauren Layne never disappoints in creating delightful characters with scorching chemistry, as friends and lovers. And of course, you definitely won’t miss out on steamy scenes and witty banter.

“Logan. I don’t understand you like this. I don’t get what you want from me.”
He stared into her eyes. “Yes. You do.”
I loved Alexis’ character; strong, sassy and takes no crap from anyone, but behind her cool and calm facade, she's a vulnerable person after being previously burned in love. Our beau, on the other hand, is definitely a one in a million. I mean, seriously, where do you find a guy so patient and willing to wait for so long? Logan is the absolute book boyfriend! Not only is he a sexy Adonis with a knack for numbers; he’s also English! (Because accents turns me into jelly).

In a short span of time, this series has made a special mark in my heart… and I’m not ready for it to end. I absolutely adored reading The Wedding Belles (though I still have yet to post my review for the rest of the books) and I just can’t get enough. Definitely adding this duo to my list of romances featuring power couples, because #goals. It’s fast paced and a very captivating read, that will keep you wanting for more and can each be read as a standalone! If you’re a chick lit romance fan and love books by Rachel Gibson, Jill Shalvis, Jessica Lemmon, Jennifer Probst or Jaci Burton, this series is definitely for you!

READ AN EXCERPT!


“Hello.”

The sexy British accented startled Alexis out of her thoughts, and she glanced up, both alarmed and intrigued to find that the face that awaited her was every bit as appealing as the voice.

The man was about her age—early, maybe midtwenties—and ridiculously cute. His hair was dark and maybe just a touch too long, as though he intended to get a haircut but kept forgetting. The eyes were brown and friendly, accented by trendy black-framed glasses.

The chunky cable-knit sweater with elbow patches—for real—bordered on dorky, but then, Alexis had always had a soft spot for dorky. He had a bit of the Clark Kent thing going on, which had always been far more her type than the overrated Superman.

“Hi,” she replied quickly, realizing that she’d been staring.

His smile grew wider as he extended a hand. “Logan Harris.”

Darn. Even the name was good.

“Alexis,” she said.

“Does that come with a last name?” he teased, lowering himself to the vacant barstool beside her.

“Not to strange men,” she retorted.

“I could buy you a drink. Get rid of the ‘strange’ part.”

Alexis’s smile slipped as she remembered that romance, even flirting, wasn’t part of her plan. She’d learned the hard way that she could have one or the other—her own business or a boyfriend—not both. And even if she wanted the latter, the latter didn’t want her back.

“No thanks; I’m fine,” she said, letting the slightest amount of chill enter her voice. The ice-princess treatment, Roxanne called it.

Logan shrugged, undeterred. “All right then. May I borrow your menu?”

She nodded, and he picked it up, perusing it for several moments and paying her no attention.

It was both a relief and also a bit of an insult, if she was being entirely honest, to be given up on so easily.

Alexis tried to turn her attention back to her laptop but watched out of the corner of her eye as he finally shut the menu, waiting patiently to catch the bartender’s eye.

“Hi there,” he said, when the bartender ambled back over. “I’d like a Stella, and a maybe bite to eat?”

Alexis didn’t miss the once-over that the bartender gave Logan before the curvy redhead leaned over the bar, displaying perky boobs as she clicked her pen and pulled a notepad out of her back pocket.

“Shoot,” the bartender said flirtatiously, looking a good deal friendlier than she had when she’d spoken to Alexis.

Not that Alexis blamed her. A cute Brit could do that to a girl.

“All right then,” Logan said. “I’d like the burger, medium, with Swiss. Fish and chips, extra tartar, and . . . how’s your chicken club?”

The bartender blinked. “It’s good. But you want all that?”

“I do. Thank you.”

“Suit yourself,” she said, scribbling Logan’s order on the pad.

“Hungry?” Alexis couldn’t resist asking after the bartender moved away.

Logan gave a sheepish smile. “I’m a recovering student. I sometimes get so wrapped up in my day that I forget to eat.”

“A recovering student. What does that mean?”

He turned slightly toward her. “Someone’s showing plenty of interest in a strange man.”

She bit her lip. “I’m sorry if I was rude before. I’m just not really in the market for . . . you know.”

He gave her an easy smile. “Everyone’s in the market for a friend, Alexis.”

She opened her mouth and then shut it as she realized he was right. She could use a friend. She’d spent her entire life in Boston and knew almost nobody in New York. This guy seemed nice and nonthreatening enough—what would be the harm in a little conversation over dinner? It had been too long since she’d had somebody to share a meal with.

Logan seemed to know the moment she capitulated, because he turned more fully toward her. “A recovering student, Alexis, is a recent graduate. One who hasn’t quite absorbed that there will be no more finals, no more requisite all-nighters, and no more dorm sex.”

Alexis laughed. “Undergrad, then?”

He gave her a wry look. “How young do I look, darling? MBA from Columbia. Just finished up end of last year.”

She felt a little stab of relief that he wasn’t twenty-two.

He leaned toward her slightly. “Twenty-five next month, just in case you were wondering. As a friend.”

She tried to hide her smile and failed. “Columbia, huh? You’re a long way from home.”

“Noticed that, did ya?” He winked. “I came out here for undergrad, also Columbia. Always figured I’d go back to London and maybe someday I will, but . . .” He shrugged. “Seems I have stuff to do here first.”

“Such as?” She took a sip of her wine, dismayed to see that it was half-empty.

“Well, this will probably shock you, given my vast amount of brawn, but I’m an accountant. Or at least I will be, once I get my business up and running.”

Alexis was impressed. “Your own business?”

Most twentysomethings, even those with an entrepreneurial bent, opted to get a few years of work under their belts for someone else before branching out on their own.

He nodded. “I’m working out of my flat for now, but I’m hoping to lease some office space soon, get some legitimacy. If nothing else to get my father off my back.”

“He’s not a fan of your plan?” Alexis asked.

Logan’s shoulder lifted, and for the first time he seemed a little sad. “Both parents have had it in their head that I’d come home. Run the family business in London.”

“Which is . . . ?”

He spun his beer glass idly. “Financial consulting firm. My father’s the CEO, Mum’s the COO.”

“Wow, that’s . . .”

“Scary?” Logan supplied.

“I was going to say impressive. That they work together—without killing each other, I mean.”

“They’re in love. It’s atrocious,” he said with a wink. “What about your folks?”

Alexis laughed. “Not in love. They divorced when I was in high school. Dad’s remarried and happy now, I think. Mom not so much.”

“And you?” he said. “Are you happy, Alexis?”

She pursed her lips, surprised and yet not entirely unsettled by the personal question. “It’s been a while since anyone asked me that. Since I even thought about it, really.”

“Think it out. I’ll wait,” he said with a wink.

She didn’t have to think that long. “I’m almost happy.”

“You sound quite confident on that.”

She shrugged. “Let’s just say that I need a few things to fall into place in my professional life, but once that happens . . . yeah. I’ll be happy.”

She’d make sure of it.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Lauren Layne

Lauren Layne is the USA Today bestselling author of more than a dozen romantic comedies. She lives in New York City with her husband (who was her high school sweetheart--cute, right?!) and plus-sized Pomeranian.

In 2011, she ditched her corporate career in Seattle to pursue a full-time writing career in Manhattan, and never looked back.

In her ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.

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Bite-sized Romances Feat. Veronica Larsen

You and Me
by Veronica Larsen (Goodreads, Twitter, Facebook)
Self published on June 27th, 2016
Genres: New AdultRomance, Contemporary, Novella
Amazon US

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Just in time for summer: A Bite-Sized Romance! Everything you crave--banter, steam, romance--all in one quick, fun, and delectable standalone.

It all started in the pouring rain. His wet shirt plastered to his hard body. My drenched hair strewn across my face. We bantered. He held the door. I found out his name. And for a half a second, I fell hard. Then the record stopped. Forget his quick wit, those biceps, and insanely disarming clear blue eyes. The sexy sonofabitch proved he’d be just another mistake. But Jackson won’t give up that easily. He's determined to show me that opposites can not only attract, they can ignite. Can he and I become an us? Or did any chance we had at a future already get washed away?

I received a review copy courtesy of the author/publisher. This does not affect my opinion or views regarding the book whatsoever.

This has got to be the most favourite novella I've ever read. It's sweet, sassy and sexy--everything I look for in a romance! Veronica Larsen never disappoints.

You and Me follows Samantha as she moves in her sister's apartment... and funnily enough, gets drenched under the rain before she could even fully move in. Leave it to fate to make her day worse by bringing in a totally good looking guy while looking her worst. Although, I don't think Jackson wouldn't mind a wet T-shirt show, hah!

I absolutely enjoyed reading about Samantha. She's sassy and savvy and works as a midwife (which is totally not something I expected). Jackson is hilarious! A total charmer who would do anything to get what he wants. And he wants Samantha, even after he pissed her off when he unintentionally took a hit at her career. Jackson and Samantha are a hoot together--their banter is absolutely entertaining, with equally steamy scenes to match.

You and Me is such a fun read and I enjoyed every bit! Every turn of a page will leave you in giggles!


Him Or Me
by Veronica Larsen (Goodreads, Twitter, Facebook)
Self published on July 19th, 2106


There’s the boyfriend and there’s the friend. I’m the friend. The guy she leans on, laughs with, and complains to. The guy that gets all of her jokes and sees her at her worst. The guy with his hands shoved deep in his pockets to keep from touching her. The guy so good at hiding his feelings she’s never once suspected. Until the day I tip her hand and everything changes. Until the day I give her the choice that's been right in front of her this whole time. Him or me?

A bite-sized romance. Everything you crave in one delectable little standalone.

I received a review copy courtesy of the author/publisher. This does not affect my opinion or views regarding the book whatsoever.

Veronica Larsen's second bite-sized romance features Jackson's brother, Heath, who is madly in love with his best friend, Grace. The only catch is, she's not single. But her boyfriend, William, is a total douche.

I knew there was just something more between Grace and Heath when I first met them in You and Me, and I was so excited to read about them! Although I didn't expect an unrequited type of romance between the duo. But don't fret, it's not totally unrequited, because Grace obviously has some feelings for Heath as well.

While I enjoyed reading about Samantha and Jackson in You and Me, the fluff in Him or Me made me love it to bits! Grace and Heath are so adorable together and very much ship-worthy! Hearts all over! I loved reading about their friendship and how Heath continued to pine for Grace. Their banter is incredibly hilarious and I love how they try to catch each other off guard with random outbursts that are totally absurd and ridiculous. The ending is also the cutest thing I've ever read!

I totally recommend reading these bite-sized romances. Read it on the way to work, during your lunch break, or wherever! They're short, sweet and absolutely delicious, you'd want more! (Maybe a sequel-novella perhaps of both couples?)