Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Book Day Release & Reviews... Shiloh Walker's Razed

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We are so excited to bring you the Release Day Launch for Shiloh Walker's RAZED! RAZED is the second novel in Shiloh’s Barnes Brothers Series published by Berkley (Sensations), an imprint of Penguin. Check out the giveaway below then grab your copy today!


About RAZED:

Tattoo artist Keelie Jessup can handle that someone else has claimed the man of her dreams. She’s just not pleased with her remaining options…

Keelie doesn’t believe in the “perfect man.” But the men who are worth the trouble are usually taken—like her business partner Zach Barnes. After a string of bad luck and the lost chance with Zach, Keelie decides that maybe flying solo—and living with suppressed desires—is the key to happiness.

As a photographer, Zane Barnes has an eye for the human form, and his eyes can’t get enough of Keelie’s curves. Unfortunately, Keelie is like most women—always fawning over his little brother, Zach. Zane is about ready to give up, but then a few stolen moments at his brother’s wedding have him thinking maybe there’s a chance there after all. Now he just has to prove that the perfect man does exist…for her.

Keelie’s eyes were blind.
What in the hell was happening?
Lifting his head, he looked around, spied the narrow dip in the brick wall and he twisted, taking them inside it. The solid weight of her in his arms, the feel of her body against his was heady, a wonderful pleasure, one he didn’t want to give up.
“Zane . . .” She whispered his name as he turned her around, tucking her back against his chest.
“Shhh . . .”
He could feel how close she was. Her entire body had gone rigid. He wanted to pull her skirt up, tear her panties away and sink inside. But he’d be damned if the first time he made love to her happened here . . . like this.
Still, her body trembled, a fine subtle tremor that came from deep inside. When he lay his palm on her belly, the muscles jumped at his touch. Slowly, he slid his hand down and toyed with the hem of her skirt. “May I?” he whispered, pressing his mouth to her neck.
“What?” The question was a thick, velvety caress.
He slid the tips of his fingers up. “Let me do this,” he said softly. His cock jerked in jealous demand. It had better ideas, but that wasn’t going to happen.
She didn’t say anything, but neither did she pull away, so he slid his hand higher, the clinging material of her skirt rising up.

First, we must say thank you to InkSlinger PR for introducing us to Shiloh Walker’s Razed and providing us an ARC in return for an honest review. This is a new author and a new series for us as well. Thank you Shiloh Walker for an amazingly good story!

Emmy and I are stepping out into the big girl world of romance one book at a time it seems… Its a scary world but one that so far has been a good one. Though as with most any other person… exploring something new can be that way. But this book, to me was more than worth the exploration. Razed is a contemporary romance between a tattoo artist (Keelie Jessup) and a photographer (Zane Barnes). Zane is like Clark Kent with his nerd glasses and just.. UNF! Love me a sexy man in glasses. (grins)

::: Barb’s Review (4 ½ stars) :::

Keelie Jessup and Zane barnes have known each other for years. His family is a constant in and out of her life since she works with Zane’s younger brother Zach. They are partners -as in his business partner- in the the tattoo world. Running your own business is cool. They get to do what they love and then she gets to make others lives just as colorful as her through her work.

After a long time of not seeing each other Keelie and Zane see each other at Zach and Abby’s wedding. What starts out as a little talking in the outside garden turns into a heated encounter between them both. Whoever said weddings were boring? Well if you are Keelie you get your world rocked by your superman at a wedding. Pressed up against a wall. (Thuds) All in all it was a good wedding even if Keelie’s heel broke and she busted up her ankle. Zane for the time being made it better. How could it not? Was she comfortable around them all and the lovey dovey wedding stuff, not really but she was still there. but then again, who really is all comfy like at a wedding? Unless it’s yours that is. I know I am not a fan of all the hoopla but I attend them as it is deemed necessary. (laughs) Seems Keelie and Zane have a lot of pent up tension that needed to explored but when they all go their separate ways again life kinda goes back to normal.

When Zane shows up in Tucson again with big news. He has decided to move to Tucson and make this his new home. Open up a photography studio and … be closer to Keelie. Is he doing it all for her? No but then again yes. He wants to be doing it all for her. She is his inspiration to finally be the man he wants to be. While visiting the shop Zance catches Keelie at a bad time. Seems her co-worker Anais has set her up on a blind date. (gags) Those are never fun. But thanks to fate or even divine intervention Zane and Keelie have to see each other again that night. Seems when they bumped into each other as they walked out of the shop they switched phones. He couldn’t have shown up at a better time. The asshole Keelie was on a ‘date’ with decided he didn’t want to let her go. He thought attacking her would get him what he wanted. But.. her superman came in and kicked his ass. Saving her from being hurt. Keelie, unlike other girls really isn’t used to the whole damsel in distress thing but she is glad Zane was there.

Zach shows his worry for his big brother while trying to stay objective… but when its obvious to them all that Zane and Keelie are interested in each other a protective edge comes over him for both his brother and the woman he considers a sister. Tension runs high for a while but in the time it takes it to sink in that ‘hey, they both want this” Zach relaxes. As they try to work on their relationship small bits and pieces of their pasts come to the forefront. Can they move past them? Can they adapt to them? How will the other react to them? We all have a dark side, something about us no one knows but for Zane and Keelie what they hide from everyone they are also hiding from themselves. Its what runs them, what makes it so they can go out into the world face the people that they do and hold their heads up. What is in your past shapes the you of today and for both Keelie and Zane that is strong people. Both with values, inspirations and has then both looking for what only the other can provide. Even if they don’t really see that to start with.

When Zane shares a part of his life through his photography, his early days as a child in school who was picked on, bullied and beat up daily..the part of him no one knows about it stirs emotions in her. Her past comes to the surface, you get to see her blossom from a scared child who hid for the last few years to a woman determined to make a difference in someone elses life. To help those that needed it. To rise from the ashes of despair and heartache to become an advocate and to stand for justice.

I have to say I am very pleased with this book. Being a newbie to the whole romance genre I was afraid this book would be full of sex and soap opera drama.. well we have drama but its real drama. When I say real its things that actually happen. Real life situations with real emotions behind them. Keelie and Zane both had my heart clenching with the emotions that went through me through this book. I can say that their story is not all easy and falling into each others arms kind of story. They have to work to be together, to see that this is what they need and want. In order to keep the plots big “boom” under wraps - because I won’t ruin it for anyone - I only told what I could. This novel is one that I think will be on the reading lists of anyone who wants a good story, great characters and an ending that melts your feels into a sea of yumminess.

Its definitely one I can see myself rereading in the future. And I know someone that this book will inspire in the way that nothing can keep you down if you don’t allow it. I will be passing this book name around. And adding this author to my list of people to keep an eye on. Even as her novels are ‘stand alones’ I plan to go back and read book 1 (Wrecked) and then I will be buying, reading and reviewing book 3 (Busted) as soon as its out. (grins)

::: Emmy’s Review (4 stars) :::

Barb and I recently have started branching of out our comfort zone genres of books to include more contemporary romance and scifi/fantasy type novels.  When we started doing this, I kept thinking back to the stacks of Harlequins a favorite aunt of mine had teetering by her reading chair….and I’ll admit, I only flipped through them for the sex scenes!  Having never been a big fan of romantic comedy movies myself, I have been a little leery of  your typical “romance novel”.  Admit it, in the last few years it seems that the plot for most romantic comedy movies have been getting dumber and dumber.  It seems comedy in general has been getting dumber and dumber, but that may be just me getting old and cynical! (lol)  

I had mixed feelings when starting this novel, because I was afraid that it was going to be one of those girl meets boy, is instantly attracted to boy (and vice versa).  They get along, fool around, then have a stupid miscommunication and a fight, break up and then get back together by the end of the book (or movie).  That formula is so played out that it’s pretty much the reason I rarely read or watch anything billed as a straight romance.
That is not the case with this book.

What caught my attention first was well, I’ll admit it, the cover, and then the fact that it’s about a tattoo artist  (Keelie Jessup) and a photographer (Zane Barnes).  Those are both jobs (and lifestyles) that interest me, so I already had high hopes before I even read the first page.  

The opening scene takes place at a wedding between Zach and Abby, whom I understand were the focus of the first book in this series. Zach owns the tattoo shop that him and Keelie and their other partner, Javi, work out of.  ( I actually know a tattoo artist named Javi, so I got a big laugh out of that!)   Keelie, our tattoo artist is present at the wedding and feeling just a tad uncomfortable - at some point in the recent past she kissed the groom, and while it was a mistake and did not end any relationships, things are still a little strained.  Zane is Zach’s older brother, and is a photographer.  He has apparently had an interest in Keelie for years, but she is oblivious to it. They talk, as they have not seen each other in some time.  They step outside for some air and wind up having a heated encounter in the garden.  Keelie lets herself be caught up briefly, but when she comes up for air she backpedals at the speed of light.   At first I thought it was just guilt and bad timing that caused her to shut down, but we soon find out that there is much, much more to her character. More than once I found myself wondering just what happened to her to make her the way she is.  

Zane, as well, is much more complex than we see on the surface.  He is a bartender  and a photographer, and decides to finally make photography his main profession.  He moves to Tucson, to open his studio and be closer to Keelie. Boy has it bad...no doubt about that.  He has asked her out more than once since the wedding, but for unknown reasons she keeps blowing him off.  After he rescues her from a blind date gone wrong, she agrees to coffee with him (finally!) and things only get better from there.  Zane is hiding his own violent and painful past, a past that his own family has no clue about.  He realizes that there are things about Keelie that just doesn’t add up (like why does she live in a ghetto when he knows that the tattoo shop is raking in the dough?), but he is determined to show her that he wants to be her man.  (Aw)  I was impressed with him, he wasn’t pushy with her at all, and he was patient to the extreme.  When Keelie’s past (and his own) come to light he stands beside her, as much as she will let him, until she decides to trust him.  

I was pleasantly surprised by how much “meat” there is in this story.  It is in no way a stupid, fluff filled brain candy kind of tale.  The back stories for each of these characters were, to quote Barb, gut wrenching, and I was glued to my kindle for the whole last half of the book.  By the time I reached the end I was wishing for more!  I’m sorely tempted to go back and read the first book in this series, and add the third, Busted, coming out in May 2015, to my to-be-bought list.  

If I keep running across “romance” of this quality, they just might make a fan of me yet!

:: End Review Time ::

“So, this place. You want me to meet you there. For coffee.”
“Yeah.” She angled her chin up.
It made him want to bite her, kiss her, hug her, cuddle her. That cocky, almost brash exterior . . . what did it hide, he wondered? Sweeping his thumb across her mouth, he murmured, “And just why are we meeting for coffee? You just like caffeine?”
“If you’re going to be an asshole,” she started.
He cut the rest of her words off with his mouth.
She’d answered his question. He’d just wanted a chance. Now, taking advantage of her already parted lips, he slanted his head and licked the inside of her mouth, sliding one hand up to cup her cheek, angling her head back.
With his other hand, he cupped her hip. Only her hip, because it would be so very easy to try for more.
Everything inside him pushed for that.
But he wasn’t going to rush this.
Not this, of all things.
He slid his tongue along hers, growled when she caught him and sucked him just a little. Dark, dirty little thoughts raced through him as he imagined her doing that to his cock. His fingers tightened on her hip and she swayed, leaning closer.
The sound of her moan pierced the fog and he forced himself to end the kiss, bit by bit. His heart was racing when it was done and his muscles were tight with the urge to grab, take . . . keep.

And don't miss the first book in the Barnes Brothers Series...

In the nineties, Abigale Applegate and Zach Barnes were the most beloved sitcom child stars in the world. Then they grew up and left Hollywood behind…

Whatever happened to Abigale Applegate?

She’s been wondering the same thing.

With her Hollywood dreams long gone, Abigale now has a nice, neat, uncomplicated life—until the day her perfect fiancé needs to talk. Dumped, a little more than shattered, and totally confused, Abigale turns to Zach, her best friend since forever, to help her pick up the pieces. He does it with a gift—a copy of Wreck This Journal. She can vent her frustrations, and sketch out a new plan. Zach just hopes he’s part of it. Because he’s been in love with Abigale his entire life.

When the journal falls into Zach’s hands, he discovers Abigale wants a new man. And fast. Nothing more than a hot distraction. Zach has a strategy, too. He’s going to be that man. It’s his last chance. Abigale might be out to shake up her life, but Zach’s out to reinvent it. Now, all he has to do is convince Abigale that life can go as planned.

WRECKED on Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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About Shiloh Walker:
Shiloh Walker is an award-winning writer…yes, really! She’s also a mom, a wife, a reader and she pretends to be an amateur photographer. She published her first book in 2003. Her newest series, Secrets and Shadows, launched in April 2014.

Look for the newest book Deeper than Need, to be followed by Sweeter than Sin and Darker than Desire. She writes romantic suspense, contemporary and paranormal romance, and urban fantasy under the name J.C. Daniels.      

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