Contemporary Romances, Ahoy!

Tinderbox

Tinderbox by Rachel Grant is $2.99! This is the first book in the Flashpoint series, which is more romantic suspense than contemporary. I saw a huge ad for this series at RT in Reno and immediately added it to my TBR. Readers say the competence porn level is high and this book might qualify for the “Extreme Location” square for Ripped Bodice bingo.

In the volatile tinderbox of the Horn of Africa, Morgan Adler has made the paleoanthropological find of a lifetime. The discovery brings her to the attention of a warlord eager to claim both Morgan and the fossils, forcing her to make a desperate dash to the nearby US military base to beg for protection.

Master Sergeant Pax Blanchard has orders to intercept Dr. Adler before she reaches the base, and in so doing saves her life. After a harrowing afternoon he safely delivers her to his commanders, only to find his responsibilities toward protecting the obstinate archaeologist have only just begun.

Morgan and Pax are forced to work together in the Djiboutian desert heat, but it is the fire that ignites between them that threatens to combust them both. For the Green Beret, involvement with the woman he must protect is a threat to his career, while for the archaeologist, the soldier is everything she never wanted but somehow can’t resist. When Morgan uncovers a mystery surrounding Djibouti’s most scarce and vital resource, the danger to her reaches the flashpoint. For Pax, protecting her is no longer a matter of following orders, and he’ll risk everything to bring her back alive.

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Just a Girl

Just a Girl by Ellie Cahill is 99c! This is a small town contemporary romance with a rockstar heroine, and would work for the “Return to Hometown” square in Ripped Bodice bingo. Elyse read this one and gave it a B+. She especially liked how the hero’s anxiety was handled:

One thing I really loved about this book was Paul. He’s got an anxiety disorder and I felt that it was depicted very accurately. He has panic attacks (he almost has one when his tattoo is getting touched up) and he has debilitating stage fright. 

I think anyone who has experienced a panic attack (raises hand) or a generalized anxiety disorder, will appreciate this book.

In this pitch-perfect novel from the author of When Joss Met Matt (“One of those books that make you forget everything around you.”—Sophie Jordan), a rock ’n’ roll diva must choose between her career and her heart.

After getting kicked out of her own band—by her own boyfriend—Presley Mason finds herself back in Wisconsin, helping her parents run their renowned music store. Instead of belting out powerhouse vocals to sold-out crowds in L.A., she’s stocking shelves and inspecting rental violins. But the shop isn’t all bad: When she’s vacuuming up late one night, she bumps into the guitar teacher with the smoldering amber eyes and the killer tattoo. And that’s when things take an interesting turn.

Presley soon finds that Paul Kellerman is as good in bed as he is on guitar. So why isn’t he stoked to share his band, Jukebox Bleu, with her? Turns out Paul has crippling stage fright, which he’s been self-medicating without much success. But when Jukebox Bleu’s lead singer gets called for military service, the other members beg Presley to front them. Even though she swore never to mix men with music again, the temptation to perform is almost as intense as her chemistry with Paul. Now Presley must decide what’s more important: a second chance at love . . . or rock stardom.

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One and Only

One and Only by Jenny Holiday is $2.99! This is the first book in the Bridesmaids Behaving Badly series and I’m about halfway through it. It’s pretty cute and the heroine is an adorable nerd. However, the heroine is described as being a little unhappy with her weight and trying to lose some before her friend’s wedding. But in the book’s description, she seems like the average dress size for an American woman and the cover model is thinner than what I was expecting.

In this laugh-out-loud romantic comedy, USA Today bestselling author Jenny Holiday proves that when opposites attract, sparks fly.

Miss Responsibility meets Mr. Reckless

With her bridezilla friend on a DIY project rampage, bridesmaid Jane Denning will do anything to escape–even if it means babysitting the groom’s troublemaker brother before the wedding. It should be a piece of cake, except the “cake” is a sarcastic former soldier who is 100% wicked hotness and absolutely off-limits.

Cameron MacKinnon is ready to let loose after returning from his deployment. But first he’ll have to sweet talk the ultra-responsible Jane into taking a walk on the wild side. Turns out, riling her up is the best time he’s had in years. But what happens when the fun and games start to turn into something real?

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Big Rock

Big Rock by Lauren Blakely is $2.99! Elyse read this one and did a Lightning Review for it. She said it had a good friends to lovers plot, but didn’t enjoy the hero POV throughout the book:

Overall, the book is cute and it’s sexy, but the plot is a little contrived and Spencer can be frustrating. If we’d had Charlotte’s voice, I think it would have evened out the story a bit.

It’s not just the motion of the ocean, ladies. It’s definitely the SIZE of the boat too.

And I’ve got both firing on all cylinders. In fact, I have ALL the right assets. Looks, brains, my own money, and a big cock.

You might think I’m an asshole. I sound like one, don’t I? I’m hot as sin, rich as heaven, smart as hell and hung like a horse.

Guess what? You haven’t heard my story before. Sure, I might be a playboy, like the NY gossip rags call me. But I’m the playboy who’s actually a great guy. Which makes me one of a kind.

The only trouble is, my dad needs me to cool it for a bit. With conservative investors in town wanting to buy his flagship Fifth Avenue jewelry store, he needs me not only to zip it up, but to look the part of the committed guy. Fine. I can do this for Dad. After all, I’ve got him to thank for the family jewels. So I ask my best friend and business partner to be my fiancée for the next week. Charlotte’s up for it. She has her own reasons for saying yes to wearing this big rock.

And pretty soon all this playing pretend in public leads to no pretending whatsoever in the bedroom, because she just can’t fake the kind of toe-curling, window-shattering orgasmic cries she makes as I take her to new heights between the sheets.

But I can’t seem to fake that I might be feeling something real for her.

What the fuck have I gotten myself into with this…big rock?

BIG ROCK is a standalone, dirty romance novel written from the guy’s POV by NYT Bestselling author Lauren Blakely…

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