Review: Bayou Nights by Julie Mulhern

Monday, July 25, 2016

Bayou Nights by Julie Mulhern
Series: Haunting Desire, Book 2
Publisher: Entangled: Select Historical
Genre: Historical Paranormal Romantic Suspense Bayou Nights Cover
ISBN: 9781633757189
Release Date: July 25, 2016
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

New Orleans, 1903.
Before he died, Christine Lambert’s father won a piece of eight in a poker game. How was he to know the coin was part of a puzzle that when solved revealed the location of Jean Laffite’s treasure? Now Christine must find the treasure before a killer beats her to it.

Mattias Drake is as out of place in New Orleans as a raven in a flock of hummingbirds. He has serious work to do and Christine is a distraction he doesn't need. But how can he resist a lady in distress--even if that lady can win a fight armed with a hat pin?

Together they must overcome their pasts and defeat dark forces sent by a shadowy evil. In the process, they just might find the greatest treasure of all…

When a zombie attacks milliner Christine Lambert in her own store, it’s only the beginning of her troubles. Her father gave her a piece of eight to guard, and the coin in question just happens to be the first clue in uncovering a priceless treasure that once belonged to a famed pirate. The problem is, every thief, murderer, ghost, and voodoo priestess in New Orleans seems to know she has the coin. On top of that, Christine’s father has gone missing and for all her knowledge of the supernatural, she doesn’t know how to find a missing ghost. It’s time to ask for help. But the help her friend sends – stuffy Yankee investigator Mattias Drake – isn’t exactly who she expected. Now, Christine will have to work with an undeniably compelling stranger if she hopes to rescue her father, locate a pirate’s treasure, and live long enough to tell the tale.

Bayou Nights is an intriguing blend of mystery, romance, and the supernatural, all set against the sultry backdrop of early twentieth century New Orleans. I absolutely love how Julie Mulhern brings the richly atmospheric world of 1903 New Orleans to life in this tale. The world draws you in from the start and you feel like you’re walking alongside Christine and Drake as they encounter the most incredibly vibrant spirits, both living and dead.

As for Christine and Drake themselves, they are compelling leads with solid chemistry. Christine is a strong, clever woman who has made a name for herself as a milliner. New Orleans is in her blood and spirit, and I thoroughly enjoyed watching her charm all those around her, ghosts and the living alike. Christine is no wilting flower, but a woman used to protecting herself, both physically and emotionally. It’s not easy for her to trust Drake, and her family history has given her good reason not to. But Drake, for all that he’s a fish out of water in the South, is an excellent match for Christine. He’s reliable, honest, and willing to do whatever it takes to protect her, while respecting her own strength and talents. Drake is also our eyes for this world, and watching events unfold from his point of view was delightful. It’s interesting to watch both he and Christine grow over the course of the story. Their romance isn’t a case of insta-love; the two of them come to know and respect one another as they fall in love, which I really liked.

The romance in Bayou Nights takes a back seat to the treasure hunt and the mystery of who is behind the attacks on Christine and the kidnapping of her father. There’s danger around every corner in this story, and somehow the almost languid pace of the book pairs well with the intensity of the action. Ms. Mulhern packs a lot of history, characters, and paranormal encounters into Bayou Nights, and it serves this unique story well.

Bayou Nights is the second book in Ms. Mulhern’s Haunting Desire series. As I have not yet read the first book, Bayou Moon (formerly titled A Haunting Desire), I can safely say that Drake and Christine’s story can be read as a standalone. That being said, by the time I was done with Bayou Nights I definitely wanted to go back and read Bayou Moon. I absolutely love the unique world Ms. Mulhern has created in the Haunting Desire series and I’m looking forward to revisiting it.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Lilah Pace Book Order

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Click on series title to jump to a particular reading order:

Asking for It
His Royal Secret

Asking for It

Genre: Erotic Contemporary Romance Romance

1. Asking for It
My Review

2. Begging for It
My Review

2.5. Asking for More
My Review


His Royal Secret

Genre: Erotic Contemporary Male/Male Romance

1. His Royal Secret (available 7/17/16)

2. His Royal Favorite (available 8/16/16)


Please note: This page was written by me, so as always, please visit the author’s website for up-to-date, author-verified information as well as for information books that have not yet been included to this list.

Review: Rock with You by Rachel Lacey

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Rock with You by Rachel Lacey
Series: Risking It All, Book 0.5
Publisher: Forever Yours
Genre: Contemporary Romance Rock with You Cover
ISBN: 9781455567959
Release Date: August 2, 2016
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

Carly Taylor is pretty sure she’s dreaming. It's not possible that Sam Weiss - rock star god and sexy hotness personified - is actually in her bakery. This sort of thing never happens in the too-small town of Haven. Or to her. And being stranded in a secluded mountain cabin with the deliciously decadent Sam during an ice storm? This is definitely not Carly’s real life…

Now there’s just the two of them, a roaring fire, lots of food and drink, and a sizzling attraction - one that just might make Carly do the unexpected. For one night, she’ll live the fantasy. For one night, nothing else matters…not her struggling business, not her lonely life, not Sam’s bad-boy reputation. But sometimes one night can turn one crazy, beautiful dream into something real.

Rock with You is as sweet as one of Carly’s famous cinnamon buns. It’s a fluffy fantasy with a lot of sugar and a dash of spice, which makes it a good summer beach read.

Who wouldn’t love a chance meeting with the insanely handsome rock star of their dreams? Especially if it turns out he is practically perfect in every way. Sam is talented musician who’s struggling to write his new album, which is why he’s taking a break from the spotlight in Carly’s small hometown, Haven. Carly is a fantastic baker whose business is struggling, but fate – in the form of an ice storm – gives her a break from reality when she finds herself stranded with Sam in his cabin. It’s not long before the two of them are giving into their mutual attraction and taking advantage of their situation by having a good ol’ fashioned fling.

It’s pretty easy to like Carly and Sam, because both of them are pretty perfect characters. Yet I never felt like the love story went deeper than simple attraction, and perhaps this is due in part to the short length of the tale. I’m not opposed to insta-love plots, but when combined with obstacles being presented and immediately toppled, the lack of depth to the characters, and the missing emotional weight to the story, it was difficult to actually become invested in the romance. Still, as a lightweight fantasy Rock with You has charm and I liked Rachel Lacey’s writing well enough that I’ll definitely read a full-length novel of hers. Rock with You is a prequel novella to Ms. Lacey’s Risking It All series and I’m looking forward to reading the first book, Run to You.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: One Week to Score by Kate Meader

Monday, July 11, 2016

One Week to Score by Kate Meader
Series: Tall, Dark, and Texan, Book 3
Publisher: Entangled: Brazen
Genre: Erotic Contemporary Romance One Week to Score Cover
ISBN: 9781633757066
Release Date: July 11, 2016
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

He’s the man she loves to hate…
Olivia Kane’s wedding day has just imploded spectacularly. Shots lined up at the bar? Bring it. Hot stranger on the hook? Come on down. What this party does not need is six feet and change of home-grown Texas cockiness in the form of her brother’s best friend, the man who broke her heart seven years ago.

She’s the woman he has to have…
Flynn Cross won’t stand by while Liv finds sensual solace in the arms of a stranger, not when his own hard-for-her body is more than up for the task. For one week, he’ll make her honeymoon-for-one a sizzling party for two.

Breaking the rules, one steamy night at a time…
But the taboo they’re breaking is only the beginning…and Flynn’s part in Liv’s wedding debacle could bring about their end.

When Olivia’s wedding day crashes and burns spectacularly – finding your groom doing the maid of honor minutes before the wedding will do that – the bride that wasn’t decides to take a solo honeymoon and enjoy a string of hot hookups. The only problem? One tall, dark, and sexy Texan in her way. Flynn is her brother’s best friend, but he’s also the man who broke her heart years ago. No one could be more shocked than she when Flynn offers to scratch all her itches for the next week. But can Liv enjoy a red-hot secret fling with the one man she’s always wanted without losing her heart?

One Week to Score is a smokin’ hot romance I loved from beginning to end! Flynn and Oliva are flawed, wonderful characters who endeared themselves to me from the start and their rocky, passionate romance is enthralling.

Liv is a smart, capable woman who has spent her entire life being forced into certain roles by those who should have loved her for who she is. Only Flynn has ever seen the true her, and he broke her heart by cutting her out of his life seven years ago. Liv has spirit and charm, and she’s also a bit vulnerable; it’s easy to adore her. As for Flynn… Man, is he one sexy Texan. But beneath that rock-hard bod and cocky charm is a man who has never felt good enough for Liv. It’s easy to see these two love one another, but it’s not easy for Flynn to trust in himself and what he and Liv could have, and that’s before he adds on the guilt of breaking the bro code by sleeping with his best friend’s sister. It’s equally difficult for Liv to risk her heart, especially since Flynn has hurt her in the past. Flynn isn’t a bad guy – not in the slightest – but he sometimes does the wrong thing for misguided (if mostly well-intentioned) reasons. As I said before, both of them are flawed, and it’s their flaws that gave them depth.

It’s a rocky road to true love conquering all in One Week to Score, but author Kate Meader makes every bump in the road worth it. The sexual innuendo Flynn flings, Liv’s ready quips, the scorching love scenes, and the surprisingly sweet moments in between all combine to make this one seriously addictive story. I hated it whenever I had to put my Kindle down because the off-the-charts hot chemistry Liv and Flynn have is simply fantastic. If you like down and dirty heroes and strong-willed, sensual heroines, you won’t want to miss One Week to Score!

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Playing By Her Rules by Amy Andrews

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Playing By Her Rules by Amy Andrews
Series: Sydney Smoke Rugby, Book 1
Publisher: Entangled: Brazen
Genre: Contemporary Romance Playing By Her Rules Cover
ISBN: 9781633757073
Release Date: July 11, 2016
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

In this grudge match, the first to score…
When style columnist Matilda Kent accidentally lets slip that she was once involved with the captain of the Sydney Smoke rugby team, she suddenly finds herself elevated to the position she’s always wanted – feature writer. The catch? She’s stuck doing a six-part series on her ex. Still, there’s no way she can turn down a promotion…or the chance to dish the dirt on the guy who so callously broke her heart.

…could win it all!
Tanner Stone wants to be involved in a feature series about as much as he wants to snap an Achilles. But the thought of seeing Tilly again is a bonus—and has him more worked up than he wants to admit. Only he’s not prepared for how different she is – all cool and professional. His Tilly is still in there, though…and he still wants her, now more than ever. All he has to do is charm her into giving him a rematch. And this time, winner takes all!

Playing By Her Rules is sexy, sassy good fun! I love rugby player heroes and second chance romances, so when you combine the two – and throw in author Amy Andrews’s signature humor – it’s easy to see why this first Sydney Smoke Rugby book was impossible for me to resist.

Tanner is an utterly delicious hero. With his killer body, sense of humor, skills on the rugby pitch (and other kinds of skills elsewhere ;)), and, most importantly, genuinely good heart, Tanner is exactly the kind of hero who’ll make you swoon. He’s worked hard to get where he is today, but he doesn’t take himself seriously and he gives back as much as he can. One of the things I loved most about Tanner was how openly head-over-heels he is for Matilda. He knows he screwed up when they were younger, breaking her heart on purpose even though he loved her, but now that he has his chance, he’s determined to win her back and get her to loosen up. And there’s no way you can resist rooting for him. Matilda is a sharp, guarded woman who is determined to move up the ladder at the paper, even if it means doing a six-part feature on her ex. She’s afraid to let Tanner in, and she uses wit and sass to try to keep her feelings for him hidden. There’s a lot of back-and-forth in Playing By Her Rules, but with the Twitter banter, Kryptonite panties, and other funny moments, the story sails along at a great pace.

Matilda and Tanner’s story is the first installment of the Sydney Smoke Rugby series and I am already hungry for more. The relationship between Tanner and his teammates made me incredibly eager to read their stories. Ms. Andrews writes some seriously hot rugby players. Whether you’re a fan of sports romances, second chance romances, or simply enjoy a sexy contemporary romance with a sense of humor, you’re in for a treat with Playing By Her Rules.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Blog Tour: Once upon a Moonlit Night by Elizabeth Hoyt

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Once upon a Moonlit Night Blog Tour

Elizabeth Hoyt's Maiden Lane series is one of my absolute favorite historical romance series, so it's I'm thrilled Wit and Sin is a part of the Once upon a Moonlit Night release day blitz! Once upon a Moonlit Night releases today (you can read my review here) and fans of the Maiden Lane series will undoubtedly be delighted, as I was, to see what's in store for Hippolyta Royale after the events of Duke of Sin. You can learn more about Once upon a Moonlit Night by scrolling down on this post, and don't forget to enter the giveaway from Ms. Hoyt's publisher, Forever - a signed copy of Duke of Sin (which you can see I loved) is up for grabs!

About Once upon a Moonlit Night:

Once upon a Moonlit Night CoverHippolyta Royle is running for her life. Pursued by hounds on a cold rainy night, the heiress flags down a passing carriage and throws herself at the mercy of the coach's occupant. Whoever this handsome traveler may be, he is her only hope to escape a terrible fate. But should he agree to escort her to safety, he's in for much more than he bargained for...

At first Matthew Mortimer doesn't believe Hippolyta's story, that she's a fabulously wealthy heiress who's been kidnapped. He assumes she's a beggar, an actress, or worse. But once his new travel companion washes the mud from her surprisingly lovely face, and they share a breathtaking kiss, there is no turning back...

My Review | Amazon | B&N | Kobo | BAM! | iTunes | Google Play | Add Once upon a Moonlit Night to Goodreads

About Elizabeth Hoyt:

Elizabeth Hoyt
Elizabeth Hoyt is the New York Times bestselling author of over seventeen lush historical romances including the Maiden Lane series. Publishers Weekly has called her writing "mesmerizing." She also pens deliciously fun contemporary romances under the name Julia Harper. Elizabeth lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with three untrained dogs, a garden in constant need of weeding, and the long-suffering Mr. Hoyt.

Find Elizabeth Hoyt on the Web: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


Enter here to win a signed copy of Duke of Sin!:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday in Review

Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy Fourth of July!

There have been some seriously hot books recently released and there are some fantastic reads due out this month. Whether you like to hit the beach with a book in hand or avoid the sun and curl up inside with your Kindle, there are a ton of great books to enjoy this summer. Below are the newest reviews I’ve written for Wit and Sin and Joyfully Reviewed. The master list and categorical lists on the right-hand side are updated as well.

Reviews for upcoming releases:
- Into the Blue (Wild Aces, Book 2) by Chanel Cleeton (available 7/5/16)
- Once upon a Moonlit Night (Maiden Lane, Book 10.5) by Elizabeth Hoyt (available 7/5/16)
- A Gift for Guile (The Thief-takers, Book 2) by Alissa Johnson (available 7/5/16)
- Heroine Complex (Heroine Complex, Book 1) by Sarah Kuhn (available 7/5/16)

All other new reviews:
- The Harder He Falls (Kick, Book 1) by Lynda Aicher
- Body Rocks (Off Beat, Book 1) by A.M. Arthur
- Forevermore (Darkest London, Book 7) by Kristen Callihan
- Beauty and the Highland Beast (Highland Fairy Tale, Book 1) by Lecia Cornwall
- Stormswept (Wales, Book 1) by Sabrina Jeffries
- Addicted (Outlaws, Book 2) by Elle Kennedy
- Heat it Up (Off the Ice, Book 1) by Stina Lindenblatt
- Hitched (Promise Harbor Wedding, Book 4) by Erin Nicholas
- Foolproof Love (Foolproof Love, Book 1) by Katee Robert
- Bay of Sighs (The Guardians Trilogy, Book 2) by Nora Roberts
- Sweet Little Lies (Heartbreaker Bay, Book 1) by Jill Shalvis
- Hanging by a Thread (Riley O’Brien & Co., Book 3) by Jenna Sutton
- The Bourbon Kings (The Bourbon Kings, Book 1) by J.R. Ward

Upcoming reviews:
- The Conquering Dark (Crown & Key, Book 3) by Clay and Susan Griffith
- Playing by Her Rules (Sydney Smoke Rugby, Book 1) by Amy Andrews
- Skies of Steel (The Ether Chronicles, Book 3) by Zoƫ Archer
- The Wicked Deeds of Daniel Mackenzie (Mackenzies & McBrides, Book 6) by Jennifer Ashley
- Wild Man (Dream Man, Book 2) by Kristen Ashley
- Down for the Count (Dare Me, Book 1) by Christine Bell
- Down and Dirty (Dare Me, Book 2) by Christine Bell
- Paper and Fire (The Great Library, Book 2) by Rachel Caine
- The Invisible Library (The Invisible Library, Book 1) by Genevieve Cogman
- The Professional: Part 2 by Kresley Cole
- The Professional: Part 3 by Kresley Cole
- Wicked Ever After (Blud, Book 4) by Delilah S. Dawson
- Filthy Rich by Virna DePaul
- How to Ravish a Rake (How to Series, Book 3) by Vicky Dreiling
- Finding Fraser by kc dyer
- Soul Weaver by Hailey Edwards
- Air Bound (Sea Haven, Book 3) by Christine Feehan
- Earth Bound (Sea Haven, Book 4) by Christine Feehan
- Fire Bound (Sea Haven, Book 5) by Christine Feehan
- His Game, Her Rules by Charlene Groome
- Captured (Fallen Siren, Book 0.5) by S.J. Harper
- Reckoning (Fallen Siren, Book 2) by S.J. Harper
- Kosher USA by Roger Horowitz
- Base Instincts (Demonica) by Larissa Ione
- The Volatile Amazon (Alliance of the Amazons, Book 4) by Sandy James
- Breathe (In Vino Veritas, Book 2) by Lauren Jameson
- Linger (In Vino Veritas, Book 3) by Lauren Jameson
- When the Rogue Returns (The Duke’s Men, Book 2) by Sabrina Jeffries
- The Art of Sinning (Sinful Suitors, Book 1) by Sabrina Jeffries
- Archer (Hard Body, Book 1) by Debra Kayn
- Before You Break (Between Breaths, Book 2) by Christina Lee
- There You Stand (Between Breaths, Book 5) by Christina Lee
- Caught Up in You (Loving on the Edge, Book 4) by Roni Loren
- Yours All Along (Loving on the Edge, Book 6.5) by Roni Loren
- Break Me Down (Loving on the Edge, Book 8.5) by Roni Loren
- Kiss of Steel (London Steampunk, Book 1) by Bec McMaster
- One Week to Score (Tall, Dark, and Texan, Book 3) by Kate Meader
- Keeping Secrets in Seattle by Brooke Moss
- While You Were Writing (Watkins Pond, Book 2) by Virginia Nelson
- Captive Prince (Captive Prince, Book 1) by C.S. Pacat
- Prince’s Gambit (Captive Prince, Book 2) by C.S. Pacat
- Kings Rising (Captive Prince, Book 3) by C.S. Pacat
- His Royal Secret (His Royal Secret, Book 1) by Lilah Pace
- Raw Desire by Kate Pearce
- Soul Sucker by Kate Pearce
- The Fifth Favor by Shelby Reed
- Laugh (Burnside, Book 2) by Mary Ann Rivers
- Beauty’s Kingdom (Sleeping Beauty, Book 4) by A. N. Roquelaure
- Rock Addiction (Rock Kiss, Book 1) by Nalini Singh
- Wild Embrace (Psy-Changelings, Book 15.5) by Nalini Singh
- Fighting the Fall (Beyond the Cage, Book 2) by Jennifer Snow
- The Angels’ Share (The Bourbon Kings, Book 2) by J.R. Ward
- A Reluctant Betrothal (The Grantham Girls, Book 3) by Amanda Weaver
- Takeover by Anna Zabo
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