Sunday, June 11, 2017

Guest Post with Kate O'Keeffe - Friends Forever

Friends Forever
By Kate O’Keeffe

Picture this: three good friends are sitting around a crackling beach bonfire one evening in late-summer, sharing a bottle of wine, talking the way friends do about life, love, and the universe. The conversation turns to men and how, after ten years of going on dates with the wrong guys or being in relationships that simply go nowhere, they are all sick to death of it. Why can’t they find “The One”, the right guy, the one they know they are meant to be with forever?

Then, one of the friends suggests they make a pact and, maybe because they are all feeling a little desperate and perhaps even a little tipsy, they agree to it: they will marry the next guy they each date. That means they all get just one last first date.

That’s the premise for my new novel, One Last First Date. It may seem to be all about finding the right guy, and it’s definitely a romantic comedy, there’s no two ways about it. But at its core, it’s also a story about female friendship. It’s the first in my new Cozy Cottage Café Series. This novel follows the first of the friends to take the plunge, Cassie on her quest to find her happily ever-after guy. But her good friends are there for the ride, too, supporting her and looking out for her—even to the point where they hide out the back, watching when Cassie finally goes on her One Last First Date, offering her advice in the Ladies after one particularly embarrassing event.

Cassie’s friends take on different roles in her life: Paige is her positive-thinking friend, the one who believes in love and wants them all to get their happily ever afters; Marissa is the pragmatic one, reminding Cassie she’s the one who’s in control of her life, that she’s the one who needs to call the shots in her quest to find love. And what’s more, they’re all this thing together, for better or for worse.

I know I would never have made such a pact when I was single! I wanted to leave it up to fate and, lucky for me, it worked out. That said, I can totally understand the desire to take control in the dating stakes, which is why I wanted to write this series of novels. I kissed my fair share of frogs before I found my prince, and looking back on things now, I was lucky enough to have friends like Marissa and Paige who had my back, who could see the guys I was dating for what they were, one hundred times more clearly than I could.

That’s why this book is so much more than a romance between a man and a woman. Because, as women, friends are such an important part of our lives. Sure, there are ups and downs in any friendship, and Cassie, Marissa, and Paige are in for a bit of a rocky ride in this book series, but they matter to each other and they want the best for one another. And, most importantly, they’re friends before, during, and after their one last first dates.

 About Kate

Kate O'Keeffe is an award-nominated author of fun, feel-good romantic comedies. She lives and loves in beautiful New Zealand with her family, two scruffy dogs, and a cat who thinks he's a scruffy dog too. He's not: he's a cat.

To date, Kate's written the popular chick lit series, the Wellywood Romantic Comedy Series, and a fun holiday novella. The first in her new Cozy Cottage Café Series, is available now, with book 2 releasing on August 8, 2017.

Books in the Wellywood Romantic Comedy Series:
Book 0: Wedding Bubbles (short story prequel)
Book 1: Styling Wellywood
Book 2: Miss Perfect Meets Her Match
Book 3: Falling For Grace

Books in the Cozy Cottage Café Series:
Book 1: One Last First Date
Book 2: Two Last First Dates – releasing August 8
Book 3: Three Last First Dates - late-2017
Book 4: One Final Last First Date - early-2018
Link to Amazon

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Book Spotlight - See You Later Broadway Book Tour with Melissa Baldwin

Title: See You Later Broadway  
Series: Broadway Series  
Author: Melissa Baldwin  
Release Date: April 5th, 2017
Genre: Chick Lit

        It’s finally here . . . the much-anticipated sequel to See You Soon Broadway! Maris is back! Decisions, decisions, decisions . . . Maris Forrester’s exciting new life is not everything she was hoping it would be. Although she’s happy in her new career, she’s plagued with the feeling that something is still missing. Imagine her surprise when an old friend presents her with an unbelievable opportunity that could change everything. This new career sounds almost too good to be true, including the upcoming trip to London. She quickly learns that even the most perfect scenarios have their drawbacks, and when something sounds too good to be true, it usually is . . . In addition to making a life-changing career choice, Maris realizes she has other decisions to make—whom to love and where to find happiness. What if neither is what she thought they should be?
AmazonUS | AmazonUK | AmazonAU | AmazonCA  
Say Hello to author Melissa Baldwin!
Melissa Baldwin is an avid runner, planner obsessed, and has always had a love for writing. She is a wife, mother, and avid journal keeper who took her creativity to the next level by fulfilling her dream with her debut novel, An Event to Remember…or Forget. Melissa writes about charming, ambitious, and real women and is now a published author of seven Romantic Comedy novels and novellas.
When she isn’t deep in the writing zone, this multi-tasking master organizer is busy spending time with her family, chauffeuring her daughter, traveling, running, indulging in fitness, and taking a Disney Cruise every now and then.
Visit all the amazing stops on this tour!
May 29th
JenaBooks - Book Review For the Love of Chick Lit - Promo Post
May 30th
Kristin's Novel Cafe - Excerpt Post
May 31st
Monique McDonell author - Excerpt Post
June 1st
Grass monster - Book Review
June 2nd
He Said Books or Me - Spotlight Post
June 3rd
Book Lover in Florida - Excerpt Post
June 4th

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Review - Mixing It Up by Tracie Banister

Born with a silver spoon in her mouth, Manhattan upper-cruster Cecily Sinclair now uses that pricey utensil to dish up fancy French fare on her cooking show, Serving Romance. When there’s an executive shake-up at the network, she’s not worried. Not much anyway. Her show’s a hit after all. Why would the new CEO want to mess with success?

The driving force behind several buzzed-about networks, Devlin Hayes is considered to be a wunderkind in the television industry. Although his plans to rebrand CuisineTV and make Serving Romance more Millennial-friendly don’t thrill Cecily, her charming, blue-eyed boss is a hard man to say “no” to and she really wants to keep her job—even if that means sharing screen time with a loathsome blast from her past.

Mercurial Italian chef Dante Marchetti a.k.a. “Il Duce” was once Cecily’s boss, and she has the PTSD to prove it. Now the owner of one of the hottest restaurants in town, Dante’s egomania knows no bounds and his constant attempts to provoke and upstage Cecily make her want to conk him on the head with a sauté pan. She thinks they’re toxic together, but viewers love their chemistry and clamor for more.

As Cecily battles to maintain the integrity of her show, she finds herself scheming and manipulating right along with Dante and Devlin. Is she fighting a lost cause? Does she really belong on TV, or would her culinary talent be better served elsewhere? And could one of the men who makes Cecily’s blood boil ignite a passion in her for something other than food?

My thoughts 
What a fun foodie romantic comedy!  I'm usually not one to read books with any sort of cooking theme because I tend to lose interest.
But this was a great read!  Who doesn't love a love triangle that involved a handsome guy, gorgeous girl and a TV show about cooking?
Cecily has had her own beloved show for years and then a younger executive takes over and wants to spice things up!  
Cecily wants NO part of it!  But...she wants to keep her job...does she really have a choice?  How bad can it be?
BAD when she is then told that she will be co-hosting with Dante Marchetti!  She hates this man as much as she hates microwave meals cooked as part of a romantic dinner!  
But the audience loves their bantering and wants more!
This book has a little bit of hate, little bit of love, and A LOT of sizzle!  
What will happen to these strong willed foodies in the end?  Only time will tell!  Check it out today!

Drink Selection
I found a yummy foodie wine to pair with this spicy book!  Will you be able to drink only one glass?
I gave this flirty and sexy read 4 wine glasses! 


Review - Fall Into Magic by Melissa Baldwin

After a devastating breakup in the middle of her summer vacation, Summer Peters knows she needs something to distract her. What better than the arrival of fall, Halloween, and a new client? Though she assumes that Alexander Williams will be a hands-off client, she is surprised to find him very down-to-earth. She’s immediately drawn to him, much to the dismay of his overprotective assistant. When it becomes obvious that he feels the same, she begins to wonder if their meeting was meant to be.

Just when she thinks she could be ready to move on with her life, her ex-boyfriend Jake returns for a second chance. She’s in for even more of a surprise when she learns her nosy, meddling neighbor is actually a psychic pushing to reveal details of her future.

Summer doesn’t know which way to turn as she feels like she’s being pulled in different directions. Between Alexander, his assistant, and her ex-boyfriend, she fears she may not be ready to move on after all. She considers turning to her neighbor for advice but the fear of knowing exactly what the future holds is more frightening than not knowing. 

My Thoughts 
I was looking for a fun series to start and I found a great one!  Fall Into Magic was just what I needed.  It's fun, set around Halloween and has a romantic tale attached!
This series follows the life of Summer Peters, and in this particular novella she has just gone through a humiliating break up with her ex Jake.  I mean, seriously who dumps someone while on vacation at the beach?
She is looking for as many distractions as she can and she dives headfirst into her business.  (She's an interior designer)
She meets with her new client - Alexander - who just so happens to be gorgeous (how perfect is that?) and he is impressed with her thoughts on his home (or maybe he's more impressed with her) and he hires her!  On the spot!
This story has many dips and turns - she deals with her ex, starts to fall in love, has dealings with a psychic and a Halloween to remember (or I can't forget the personal assistant from hell!).
I am currently reading book 2 in the series and you will love that one just as much!

Drink Selection
I choose a fun drink associated with Summer and Alexander's favorite movie, Grease!  Try this awesome Pink Lady cocktail!  Delish!
From beginning to end I loved it!  5 wine glasses all the way!


Friday, June 2, 2017

Gorgeous Cover Reveal - The Little Perfume Shop by Rebecca Raisin

What is French for falling in love?

When Del leaves small town America to compete in a perfume competition in Paris, she thinks it is just the next step on her five-year-plan. It’s an exciting opportunity. What started out as just a dream for Del and her twin sister is nearly in her grasp. If she wins this competition, they are on their way to opening their very own perfume boutique!

Arriving in Paris, watching the sun glinting off the Seine and wandering the Champs-Elysees, Del discovers the most perfect perfumery she’s ever seen. Yet, as the competition dawns Del realises that whilst she might have had the best nose in her small village, her competitors seem to know more than she could ever have dreamed. This competition isn’t going to be easy…

Del has the romance of Paris to sweep her away from her worries, but as the competition heats up, so does her desire for that which she cannot have! If only the dashing owner Sébastien didn’t smell so seductive, look so handsome and make her heart flutter like it never has before. They say love smells as sweet as a red rose in bloom, but Del would tell anyone that true love can’t be bottled – it’s beautiful and unique to everyone…even herself. With everything on the line for her future, can Del really let a little attraction get in the way of securing her dreams?
About the Author 
Rebecca Raisin is a true bibliophile. This love of books morphed into the desire to write them. She's been published in various short story anthologies and in in fiction magazines, and is now focusing on writing romance.

Rebecca aims to write characters you can see yourself being friends with. People with big hearts who care about relationships, and most importantly believe in true love.

Come say hello to Rebecca on her Facebook page : Facebook

More Amazing Books From This Series
Book 1 
Book 2 



Review - Party Girls Die in Pearls: An Oxford Girl Mystery by Plum Sykes

It’s 1985, and at Oxford University, Pimm’s, punting, and ball gowns are de rigeur. Ursula Flowerbutton, a studious country girl, arrives for her first term anticipating nothing more sinister than days spent poring over history books in gilded libraries—and, if she’s lucky, an invitation to a ball.
But when she discovers a glamorous classmate on a chaise longue with her throat cut, Ursula is catapulted into a murder investigation.
Determined to bag her first scoop for the famous student newspaper Cherwell, Ursula enlists the help of trend-setting American exchange student Nancy Feingold to unravel the case. While navigating a whirl of black-tie parties and secret dining societies, the girls discover a surfeit of suspects. From broken-hearted boyfriends to snobby Sloane Rangers, lovelorn librarians to dishy dons, none can be presumed innocent—and Ursula’s investigations mean that she may be next on the murderer’s list.
Clueless meets Agatha Christie in this wickedly funny tale of high society and low morals, the first book in Plum Sykes’ irresistible new series.

My Thoughts
What a great story!  I LOVED it!  I've never read anything like it and I can't wait till the next in the series comes out.
It's set in the 80's (who didn't love something about the eighties?)  It begins with Ursula Flowerbutton (quite the name, right?) moving to the big city to study at Oxford.
Boy did she get more than she bargained for in her first semester? 
She's hit on by several boys, invited to several parties (with only 1 formal dress in her closet), found a dead body and I haven't even mentioned all her classes? 
What's a girl to do?  Make awesome friends!  She becomes besties with an American exchange student (with lots of money and an awesome closet of clothes!). 
They become the "Cagney and Lacy" of Oxford, they attend parties to locate suspects, they sneak into rooms that are off limits  - all in the name of the investigation! 
Just when they think they have their suspect, another person looks guilty as sin!
You will love this book for beginning (the cover is to die for!) to end!

Drink Selection
What better drink to pair with this book - then a blast from the past!  The Bramble!  Delish!

I was intrigued from beginning to end and the characters were so eclectic and totally from the 80's!  5 wine glasses all the way!