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I’ve always been intrigued and fascinated with psychic abilities, the trials and tribulations of being accepted and judged, honing those abilities for the better and trying to live a normal life amidst the abnormal, and “Extrasensory” definitely falls into this category.

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The mysterious Phoenix Agency is as mysterious and intriguing as the amazing soldiers who founded it. As the CEO, Dan Romeo has seen things unexplainable as the wide-open skies with its many mysteries. In town to help his friend Chase Carpenters with his company any new invention, Dan runs into Mia as the person of interest sending warnings of threat on the company.

With precognitive abilities, all Mia Fleming wants to do is enjoy her job as an art historian and lose herself in her passion. But with visions of danger and numbers, of Dan and his erotic presence, Mia is drawn into a deadly game of danger and death. Sparks fly, passion flares and with the body count raising and Mia nearly at the jaws of death, Dan and his team have their job cut out to save the world from being destroyed.

It’s been a while since I’ve read Desiree Holt and it was a reading pleasure. Mia and Dan rock the chemistry charts, with an intriguing plot and captivating suspense, “Extrasensory” is an adrenaline read of danger, trust and a courageous story of the psychic powers.

Received an ARC from Kindle Press Romance via NetGalley for an honest review.

Rachel Lacey is coming out with a brand new series, “Stranded”, with “Crash And Burn” leading the series as Isa Delgado and Nate Peters are stranded in the wilderness with danger and flames chasing them.

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Working as a volunteer, Isa Delgado agrees to kill two birds with one stone; accompany a dog to its adopted home and get over her fear of flying. Silicon Valley billionaire Nate Peters volunteers his time and jet for animal rescue missions and having Isa, as his co-traveller is an added perk. But then as fate has it and Isa’s worst nightmare come true, her first flight ends in a crash in the wilderness as forest fires rage around them, and it becomes a race against time as to who is going to win the fiery battle.

A different path for Rachel Lacey from her contemporary romances, “Crash And Burn” sure brings out her creative side as she explores the wilderness romance, survival and developing a relationship between Isa and Nate with no supporting characters or sub-plots. She sure does a good job and if you’ve read her previous books, you’ll definitely relate to the change in her writing and narration, and she keeps it interesting and captivating.

“Crash And Burn” comes out on September 15, 2017

Received an ARC from the author for an honest review.

My introduction to Melanie Scott was “Devil In Denim” followed by “Angel In Armani” and by the time I got to “Lawless In Leather”, I was literally stitched, tied and sewed with her stunning stories and humorous writings!!!

Following the New York Saints owned by the said Devil, Angel and Lawless alpha males, comes “Playing Hard” as the romance and love transcends from the owners to the players on the field. Melanie Scott and her titles just conjure images of passion and danger, love and lust, sassy and kick-ass heroines and sexy and alpha heroes.

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Oliver Shields breathes and lives baseball and with the team making the play-offs for the first time ever, he can feel his dream being fulfilled a little closer. But then fate steps in the form of an accident removing him from the play-offs and maybe baseball itself. And destiny brings him face to face with Amelia Graham and he is at the cross roads of his future.

Coveting a hot shot job on Wall Street, Amelia Graham is successful, independent and fulfilling life, far away from her painful past. Friendly ties lands her in the middle of the successful and sexy baseball players, and her attraction to Oliver give her hope for a relationship and love that she wants more than anything.

Two different people bound by love, a romance hinging on friendships being severed, and a future that can be torn apart by distance, Oliver and Amelia have a lot to fight for with the support of their family and friends. And the constant presence of Alex and Maggie, Sara and Lucas and Mal and Raina only add spice making Playing Hard” hard to resist and not fall in love with her Melanie’s characters even more so.

Melanie Scott, her titles and her stories conjure images of passion and danger, love and lust, sassy kick-ass heroines and sexy alpha heroes and loads of wit and humor. Another wonderful, heartwarming and emotional love story from Melanie Scott…love her books!!!!!

Received an ARC from St. Martin’s Press via NetGalley for an honest review.

 

Melody Anne’s “Billionaire Aviators Series” is still as intense as the passion that smolders between the protagonists, choppy and turbulent as the waters and skies they ride and just as warm and lovely as the Armstrong brothers try to find love albeit the demands of their father’s will.

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Years in the CIA kept Ace Armstrong away from his family, to protect and to serve his purpose. And finally comes the time to clear the misunderstandings and bridge the gap between siblings and what a sibling wedding seems to be the perfect setup to clear the air and recuperate from injuries. But Ace never saw the turbulence called Dakota Forbes entering his life and he’s not sure if Dakota is more dangerous to his life or the intriguing threats that are dogging him, placing his family in danger.

The ever positive, and charming Dakota Forbes wants to live life to the fullest. With a smart mouth and a sassy attitude, she keeps Ace on his toes and his heart in flitters, all the while hoping to keep her distance from the dangerous Ace. But then heart and mind never are in tandem, and with Dakota getting into the crosshairs of Ace’s dangerous past, she’s forced to stick close to Ace…finally giving her heart and soul to her future.

The final book in the Billionaire Aviators Series, “Turbulent Intrigue” is a wonderful ending to the Armstrong siblings’ saga. Coming together finally after their father’s death, clearing misunderstandings and finding their futures, coming together as one to fight back against the danger that comes to their doorstep, Melody Anne did a brilliant job giving a perfect ending to their stories.

The chemistry between Ace and Dakota is sizzling, the rapport between the brothers is so very supportive, warm and caring, Uncle Sherman is the perfect blend of family and mischief adding spice to the story!

Received an ARC from Montlake Romance via NetGalley for an honest review.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Prince Diego Navarro is the “spare” to his brother’s “heir”. While Raoul performs his crown prince duties with the appropriate sense of nobility and poise, Diego’s garnered a bit of a reputation as a playboy – despite the good he does behind the scenes with his favorite charities.

PPP and N Cover But when tragedy strikes and his sister-in-law is killed in a car accident, Diego knows it’s time for the playboy to step up. If not for his brother, then for his niece and nephew, who now find themselves without a mother.

Which is where Rose Walters comes in.

 

Rose isn’t intimidated by money or glitz. The veteran nanny has worked for the rich and minimally famous, but a manor house is no comparison to a castle… or the handsome princes who live there. However, the worst thing she could possibly do is fall for the gorgeous playboy with a surprising heart of gold. He’s a prince; she’s the help. He lives in the tabloids; she loves her privacy. But when her two darling charges start to play matchmaker, Diego and Rose don’t stand a chance.

The Playboy Prince and the Nanny is the first book in Donna Alward’s royal duology.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:Marti Corn Photography donna alward H-R 1600

 

A busy wife and mother of three (two daughters plus the family dog), Donna Alward believes hers is the best job in the world: a combination of stay-at-home mom and romance novelist. Donna loves being back on the East Coast of Canada after nearly twelve years in Alberta where her romance career began, writing about cowboys and the west. She is the author of Somebody Like You, Somebody’s Baby, and Someone to Love.

 

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CHAPTER ONE

The noise and hubbub in the West Sussex pub was so deafening that Diego nearly missed the silent flash of the Breaking News banner across the TV behind the bar.

But he saw it out of the corner of his eye. Frowned. Turned his head away for a moment, then felt a queer lift in his gut, like something was very, very wrong.

“Diego. Hey, Diego.” His pal Ryan elbowed him in the arm. “Shite. You’d better look at this, mate.”

He turned back to the screen and the lift in his stomach dropped to his feet.

The headline scrolled along the bottom of the screen. White words against a blue background, innocuous compared to the aerial view of the scene. He didn’t need to read the banner to recognize the mangled car, one of the black limousines his father insisted they ride in when home in Marazur. If there was any doubt, it was banished by an up-close shot of a small red and yellow flag with the green coat of arms hanging limply from the front corner of the crushed vehicle.

“Diego.” Ryan’s voice was gentler now, his hand resting on Diego’s arm rather than elbowing him roughly. “It’s not your da. Or your brother.”

Diego dragged his gaze to the flash along the bottom of the screen. No, it wasn’t his father or his brother. There was no need for Diego to worry about them, or who was next in line for the throne. But tears stung his eyes as he read the names: Cecilia Navarro. Mariana Cortez.

His sister-in-law, and the nanny to his niece and nephew.

His phone buzzed. It had been doing that all night and he’d chosen to ignore it, wanting to avoid another argument with his father and spend the evening kicking back with his friends to celebrate the start of the UK polo season. Now he felt unbearably guilty as he pulled his mobile out of his pocket and looked at the screen.

Lucy, or rather, Princess Luciana. His half-sister, who he knew was visiting Marazur right now on one of her biannual trips. He took a deep breath, then hit the talk button. “Give me two seconds to go outside where it’s quiet,” he said loudly.

Leaving the gruesome news report behind, he pushed himself away from the bar and weaved his way through people until he reached the door. Outside, the English spring evening was gentle and mild. He closed his eyes and let out a breath.

“How bad is it, Luce?”

“Bad.” In that one word he could tell she’d been crying. Oh God . . .

“Ceci?”

“Gone, Diego.” Her voice caught on a sob. “Mariana too.”

For once the news had it right. His sister-in-law and Mariana—the nanny to his niece and nephew. His heart stuttered. He’d hoped there’d been a mistake. The paparazzi couldn’t be trusted with the truth, as he well knew. What a time for them to be right.

“The children?” he asked as he said a silent prayer that they hadn’t been in the car. He couldn’t think about Max and Emilia too much; he kept them at the edge of his mind and heart right now. The thought of losing them was terrifying and he steeled himself against the emotion.

“Bruised. Scared. But alive.”

He let out his breath, felt a sob escape, and gulped it back. He couldn’t lose his grip.

“We tried calling you for the last hour,” she said. “Your brother . . .”

His brother would be a wreck and expectedly so. His wife had just died. Perhaps a lot of royal marriages weren’t based on love, but Raoul’s had been. He’d doted on Ceci and the kids. Mariana, too, had been like part of the family. Hell, she’d been with the palace since . . .

Since Diego and Raoul had lost their own mother nearly twenty-five years ago. Mariana had raised them. She treated Raoul and Ceci’s children like grandkids. Grief struck him, sharp and sure, a painful ache around his heart. Mariana had been family.

“I’m sorry,” he replied, pressing the fingers of his left hand to his temple. Those were two words he said often when it came to his family. Now, though, he really meant them. “I’ll be home as soon as I can.”

“I know you will,” she said gently. Of the whole family, Lucy was the one who was easiest on him, who understood him best. Maybe because she hadn’t been raised in Marazur. It afforded her a clarity that others didn’t have. “I’m so glad I’m here right now. Papa . . .” Her voice broke again.

“Is Brody there with you?” Lucy and her family made their home in Canada, on Brody’s ranch, but visited often. Right now Diego found himself beyond thankful that she was there now to help his father and brother navigate the next few days. Papa would know what to do . . . he’d been here before.

A man shouldn’t have to face this kind of tragedy more than once in a lifetime.

“Brody’s here. He’s looking after Alex now so I can be there for Raoul and Papa.”

Lucy would be keeping everyone cared for and fed and nurtured, because that’s what she did. Diego rested his shoulders against the brick wall of the pub and sighed. Raoul, the crown prince, the responsible ruler-to-be, fair and just. Lucy, the mothering figure who cared for the family’s simpler but no less important needs. And then there was Diego. Where did he fit? In the stables. At parties. In fast cars.

In other countries. With firm admonishment to not be an embarrassment to the family.

“Diego?”

“I’m here. I’m going to go, though, Lucy. I need to make travel plans. I’ll be home as soon as I can.”

“What should I tell Papa and Raoul?”

“Nothing. I mean, just tell them you were able to reach me. I’ll look after the rest.”

There was a pause and Diego wondered if his sister was making that terrible disapproving face he hated or if she was simply emotional.

“I love you, Diego. Please fly safe.”

Emotional, thank God. He wasn’t sure he could take criticism right now. He nodded even though she couldn’t see him. “I will. I promise. See you soon.”

“E-mail your plans and I’ll have a car waiting for you.”

“You worry about yourself, and not me,” he ordered. “Love you.”

He hit the button on the phone, ending the call, and when he looked up he saw Ryan standing by the back door of the pub, watching him sadly.

“It’s bad, eh?” he asked, his brown eyes wide and too knowing.

“Cecilia,” Diego admitted. “And the nanny. The kids though . . .” Emotion swamped him and he drew in a shaky breath. “Thank God the kids are okay.”

Ryan came forward and clamped a hand on Diego’s shoulder. “Looks like you have to go back to your castle then, doesn’t it?”

Diego smiled grimly. “I can’t stay away forever. And they need me. Of course I’m going back.” It had nothing to do with duty and everything to do with family. Of course, many believed that Diego didn’t value the idea of family as much as he should.

They couldn’t be more wrong.

He looked over at Ryan. The two of them had been best friends since he’d gone to Cambridge for his postgrad and joined the polo club. Diego, in a moment of hubris, had made an offhand remark about an Irishman playing polo, and the next thing he knew he’d been dusting the dirt off his perfectly creased trousers. Then Ryan O’Toole had held out his hand, pulled Diego to his feet, and said, “Come on, Your Highness. Let’s go get a pint.”

It had been many years since then, but the offer had been made several times, particularly when Diego needed it most. Tonight, though, it wouldn’t help.

“Anything I can do for you?” Ryan asked.

Diego smiled grimly. “The blonde at the bar. Go buy her a drink. I’m going to duck out early.”

Ryan nodded with a crooked smile. “Call if you need anything.”

“I will.”

Ryan went back inside, while Diego lifted his phone again and scrolled through until he found the number of his assistant. Not that he gave her much work when he was away from home, but tonight everyone on the staff would be up and alert.

And Diego would be going home.

 

One Month Later

Rosalie tried to focus on the words on the page, but they were all a blur. With a sigh, she closed the book and rested her hands on the cover, then turned to look out the airplane window. She wasn’t usually nervous before meeting a new family, or the children she’d be caring for. This was different, though. When the agency had called about her new placement, she hadn’t expected the job to be for the Royal Family of Marazur. She’d worked for minor nobility and rich families, traveling with them when the occasion warranted, but she’d never been to Marazur and she’d definitely never worked for a prince.

She knew of the island principality, of course. And she’d even had an encounter with the younger of the princes once, though he wouldn’t remember. Diego, she recalled, and shook her head. It wasn’t Diego she was going to work for. It was Raoul. She had been hired as a nanny to the crown prince’s children. The heirs.

“Ms. Walters? Make sure your seatbelt is on. We’re going to begin our approach soon. Can I get you anything before we land?”

Rosalie looked up at the sharply dressed attendant. Raoul hadn’t sent a royal jet or anything, but he had chartered a private flight. It was beyond anything Rose had ever experienced. “No, thank you,” she said with a smile. “I’m fine.”

“Very well. We should be on the ground shortly.”

Rose sat back in the comfortable leather and looked out over the Mediterranean. It had been nearly a month since televisions, newspapers, and magazines had been abuzz with the death of Princess Cecilia. They’d shown pictures of the funeral at the cathedral in the capital, a week after the accident. It had nearly broken her heart to see the crown prince, looking harrowed and drawn, holding the hand of his daughter while his son rested on his arm. King Alexander had looked tired, and Prince Diego had been uncharacteristically solemn as he sat with Princess Luciana and her family.

Once the funeral ended, though, so did the news story, and very little was heard of the family, left to heal their wounds in relative private. The media had moved on, but Rose knew the royal family were people like anyone else. Children who, when it came down to it, had lost their mother. All the wealth and privilege in the world couldn’t make up for that, and Rose knew she had her work cut out for her.

The plane landed smoothly at the relatively small airport. When she unbuckled her seatbelt, the flight attendant was at her side once more to collect her carry-on. Rose only had to grab her purse before she exited the plane, holding on to the railing as she descended the stairs to the tarmac.

“Miss Walters?”

A liveried man waited at the bottom of the stairs, and touched his hat as he greeted her. “I’m Marco. I’ll see you through customs and on to the palace.”

Good heavens. This was a tad surreal, wasn’t it?

She smiled politely at him. “That would be lovely, thank you, Marco.” The warm, moist air was perfumed with the scent of salt and flora that she knew must be present but couldn’t be seen here in the secure, paved area of the airport. The aroma clung to the warm rays of sun that were somehow far more penetrating than any in England.

It reminded her of the school trip she’d taken when she was twelve. It had been four days in Rome and she’d loved every colorful, rich, vibrant moment of it. It had been a long time since she’d visited the Mediterranean, and she was more than ready to leave the damp and fog of England for time in the sun.

She was here to work, but couldn’t escape the thought that this was also a bit of a fairy tale, really. Her assignments through the agency had been posh indeed, but nothing on this scale.

“Miss? If you’re ready.”

Marco had both of her cases and waited for her to make her way through the doors. To her continued surprise, she was escorted through customs without any wait or trouble, and in mere minutes found herself ensconced in the back of a limousine.

My word.

She was starting to get nervous now, and twisted her fingers together. Drew them apart again and wiped them on her black trousers, then regretted that too. She had to keep calm, cool, professional. This was her job. It wouldn’t do to be flustered and nervous.

The airport was on the outskirts of the city, and she peered out the window at the narrow streets and charming houses stacked on the hillside. Oh, on one of her days off she’d have to come down here and discover all the nooks and crannies. Have coffee or a glass of wine at a little cantina along a cobbled street. She was still thinking about it when the car began to climb and wind its way out of the urban area and along some of the most beautiful landscape she had ever seen.

Marco slowed and stopped at a huge set of gates, which swung open at their arrival. They crept at a sedate pace along a paved lane flanked with what looked like some sort of oak. Then she caught sight of it. The castle—home of King Alexander of Marazur. Turrets rose up, pinky-beige against the blue of the sky and the green of the manicured grounds. A hedge formed a kind of maze in the U-shaped drive, carefully trimmed and pruned. It was smaller than some of the manor houses she’d visited in England, but there was a grandeur to it just the same. And a hominess that she hadn’t expected. Perhaps it was due to the color of the stone, warmer and more welcoming than the cold, gray-white granite she was used to.

She ran through names in her head, desperate to make sure she adhered to the proper forms of address. King Alexander—clearly Your Highness. And how often would she see him anyway? Hardly ever. She’d be with the other household staff. She’d have to communicate with Raoul, she supposed. She would be required to curtsy. He was the crown prince and would be addressed as “Your Highness” as well. If the press was to be believed, Diego wouldn’t be home much and was unlikely to be around. The Sun had just posted pictures of him somewhere in South America.

After Marco pulled to a stop, Rosalie’s door was opened by another liveried staff. “Good afternoon, Miss Walters. Welcome to Marazur.”

She pasted on a smile and let out what she hoped was a centering breath. “Thank you.”

“His Highness is looking forward to meeting you at four o’clock in the blue salon.” Perhaps he’d noticed her shaky exhale, because the man dropped his stiff formality for a moment and smiled. “Don’t worry, Miss.” He held out his hand and gallantly helped her out of the car. “The prince is really very nice. And we’re all so glad you’re here.”

Before she could ask what exactly that meant, he dropped her hand and moved to collect her bags. She looked around, marveling at the calm beauty of the grounds. It was like a beautiful oasis, more lush than the surrounding countryside, with shrubs, graceful trees, and gardens of rioting blossoms. She gawked around her as they made their way down a neat path leading to the far side of the castle. And when the man opened the door to the north wing, Rose was relatively sure she’d just arrived in Paradise.

Copyright © 2017 by Donna Alward and reprinted by permission of Swerve.

 

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