Blog Tour: Review + Excerpt | The Player and the Pixie by L.H. Cosway and Penny Reid

ThePlayerPixie_Tour

The Player and the Pixie

by L.H. Cosway and Penny Reid

Publication Date: April 12, 2016

Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Sports, Humor

PATP

Purchase: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | iBooks | Kobo | Barnes & Noble

How can someone so smokin’ hot be so bad in bed? I mean, Sean Cassidy is absolute rubbish. RUBBISH. He is the epitome of walking, talking false advertising and I want a refund! Plus he’s an arsehole. So… what is wrong with me that I can’t stop thinking about him?

The Pixie and the Player is a full-length, romantic comedy novel, can be read as a standalone, and is the second book in the Rugby Series.

THE PIXIE

Lucy Fitzpatrick doesn’t like rugby. As the little sister of Ireland’s most infamous rugby player, Lucy can’t seem to escape the championship-sized shadow cast by her big brother, or her mother’s frequent attempts to micromanage her future. Her rainbow hair is as free-spirited as her quest for inner peace, yet overbearing expectations keep bringing her down. And when she’s down, her compulsive little problem lands her in seriously big trouble.

THE PLAYER

Sean Cassidy is a cold-hearted brute… or so he’s been told. Frequently. By everyone. His blonde locks, baby blues, and rock hard bod make ladies the world over drool with desire. As the rugby world’s second most infamous player, he should be basking in his success. But Sean has never been content settling for second place, and his frequent confrontations with Lucy’s big brother leave him cold. And when he’s cold, his compulsive little problem lands him in the lap of Lucy Fitzpatrick.

THE PLAN

Sean has a problem only Lucy can solve. Lucy has a problem only Sean can fix. The solution seems obvious: you scratch my back, and I’ll bail you out of jail. But when their business arrangement unexpectedly leaves Sean scorching hot and Lucy on the precipice of inner peace, can they convince the world—and Lucy’s big brother in particular—that this is the real deal? Either way, both the Player and the Pixie are about to teach each other some pretty monumental lessons about family, life, but most importantly, love.

My Rating: 5 stars

Review

The Player and the Pixie follows Lucy Fitzpatrick and Sean Cassidy. Sean has an antagonistic relationship with Lucy’s brother, Ronan, which is why they do not find themselves in each other’s company. However, one conversation changes that. The growing tension between them is too hard for them to resist and they find themselves in a relationship neither had anticipated.

Lucy moves to New York to start afresh, away from her mom’s scrutiny. Things seem to be looking up for Lucy until she visits home and has to live with her mom again, causing her anxiety and forcing her unhealthy coping mechanism to revive. Sean Cassidy is the outcast of the Rugby team; he is a talented player, but his undesirable personality causes him to become the black sheep. He lives a lonely life – his icy family and unsatisfying one night stands. Until one day he bumps into a girl with rainbow hair.

“It’s sandalwood,” he replied. “Here, give it to me.”

I handed it across the table and he swiped his fingers in, extracting a small blob. Before I could react he took my hand and smoothed the cream into my wrist. His hands were very….large. My fingers felt completely encapsulated, minuscule by comparison. A tingling, nervous feeling buzzed in my belly as his fingertips massaged my sensitive skin. When he was done he lifted my wrist to his nose and inhaled deeply.

“Smells good on you,” he said. I was momentarily lost for words.

The sexual tension between Lucy and Sean grows each time their thrown together, while Lucy does not want to acknowledge it Sean is ready to extinguish the fire. There is only so much Lucy can take – with Sean being everywhere and the looks he gives her. Ultimately Lucy does what she’s been dying to do.

While Sean’s kisses drive her crazy, his love making could not have turned her off faster. He is terrible at sex and he knows it, however, no one stuck with him long enough to teach him and he’s never really bothered much before. But, that was before he met Lucy.

“The moment you walk into a room you brighten it, Lucy Fitzpatrick, and I for one feel like the luckiest bastard in the world for having known you.”

What starts as a few erotic lessons turns into something more than either expected. Lucy feels really conflicted about her growing relationship (or lack thereof) with Sean Cassidy because of his animosity with her bother, but Sean is not ready to let go. For the first time he’s with someone who really knows him and makes him feel. He’s not ready to lose that.

“I think I’ve missed you all my life”

Sean and Lucy’s relationship is one of the best developed relationships I have ever read. While their relationship is fun and sexy it also very deep and emotional. The way their walls came down is written very naturally. I loved reading about them grow both individually and together. They brought out the best in each other.

Cosway and Reid are a riot. Alone they produce art, but together they produce a masterpiece (or should I say masterpieces). Their writings complement each other so well, I can’t tell who’s written what (and that is the best part). I’ve already started re-reading this. And that teaser for the next book has me salivating (see what I did there ;)).

Excerpts

Excerpt #1

*Sean*

I didn’t know what I was doing.

Requests, things I wanted, words I would never speak or allow myself to think were now uncontainable.

It’s the sex, I reiterated. Again. I’d used this explanation, now on repeat, as a simple justification for the complex cacophony of my mind.

“Be with you?” Her long, dark lashes fluttered, beating like distressed butterfly wings against warming pink cheeks.

I licked my lips, tasting her there. “Yes.”

She stared at me, confused. I was also confused. And oddly frightened.

Because it wasn’t the sex.

Several seconds ticked on as we studied each other in breathless silence. She found her voice before I did. “What does that—”

“Lucy?” Annie’s voice was paired with a soft knock on the bathroom door. “Are you okay?”

I opened my mouth to whisper a clarification to the question Lucy hadn’t quite posed, because I was compelled to tell her it wasn’t the sex. We didn’t have to have sex. We could just . . . talk. Or play cards. Or touch. Or look at each other from across the room.

We could merely be together.

But she covered my mouth with her hand. Her features arrested with unmistakable panic.

“Yes. I’m fine! I just . . . started my period is all. Made a mess in my jeans, like a crime scene.” Lucy hollered in response then grimaced. She immediately mouthed I’m sorry to me. Her cheeks flushed red.

I lifted an eyebrow. She rolled her eyes, ducking her head with obvious embarrassment. I pressed my lips together so I wouldn’t laugh.

Issuing me a quelling look, Lucy released me and skittered out of the stall, whispering, “Stay here and count to three hundred.”

“Oh! Do you need anything?” Annie’s voice was less muffled and I surmised she’d opened the bathroom door.

“Ah, no. Have it all sorted now. Thank God Tom has these nice absorbent napkins instead of those troublesome hand driers. Although I feel like I’m wearing a nappy. They’re bad for the environment, so I should talk to him about replacing the napkins. Maybe make a few available for emergencies . . .”

Lucy’s anxiety-riddled chatter faded as the bathroom door clicked shut.

I released an audible exhale. My heart was beating as though it might leap from my chest. I needed to catch my breath. Neither had anything to do with being caught.

What the fuck were you doing?

It was the sex. She’s phenomenal in bed. You’ve never had that before. It was just sex.

I nodded, reiterating the logic of my justification for the uncharacteristic behavior. If I repeated it enough, perhaps I would believe it.

I didn’t count to three hundred as instructed. I counted to one hundred and twenty-three, then realized what I was doing.

“You’re mad, Sean,” I muttered, shaking myself and promptly leaving the ladies’ room. I checked the cufflinks on my dress shirt—a nervous habit—and strolled back to the table, eyeing the assortment of eejits gathered.

Excerpt #2

*Lucy*

Later that evening, I got ready for the party. My dress was cream lace, sort of floaty, and I wore my hair down with a single daisy clip at the side. I was sitting in a VIP room at the back of the venue with my brother, his fiancée Annie, and a couple of Ronan’s teammates. We were enjoying a few bottles of champagne and discussing the success the Irish squad had enjoyed during the year. Mam was elsewhere, socializing with the other team mothers, and I was glad. I just wanted to enjoy my night without her saying something about how unattractive or embarrassing I was.

We were all having a great time until the door swung open and Mr. Tall, Blond and Up Himself walked in. That would be Sean Cassidy to those not in the know, Sleazy Sean, as nicknamed by the rugby club. I tried to always see the good in people, but he and my brother didn’t have the best relationship. Not only had Sean slept with Brona, Ronan’s ex-girlfriend, but he was also universally acknowledged to be an arsehole.

It went against everything I believed in to say, because I liked to think everyone was redeemable in some way, but Sean just wasn’t a nice person. He actually seemed to be proud about the fact, like he wanted people to dislike him.

The conversation died down, everybody casting surreptitious glances at Sean who swaggered his way up to the private bar and loudly ordered a bottle of bubbly. That’s actually what he called it, but speaking of bubbly . . .

Almost of their own accord, my eyes wandered over his broad shoulders, muscular back, and down to what must have been the most perfect bubble butt I’d ever seen. You know how sometimes male athletes develop those really defined, rounded but masculine derrieres? Well, Sean Cassidy was most definitely rocking one of those, and I couldn’t resist the urge to ogle it. It was pure muscle and simply bite-worthy.

I snickered to myself when I realized I’d almost commented on it out loud. Okay, I’d officially had too many glasses of “bubbly” as Sean so douchebaggedly called it. He must have heard my snicker because his attention landed on me. He stared at me for a second, arched a condescending brow, then dismissed me all in an instant, returning his attention to the bar.

Huh.

After about thirty seconds everyone went back to their conversations, trying their best to ignore Sean. Ronan had told me once that Sean was the kind of person who thrived on attention, so ignoring his presence was probably the best course of action to take.

It was my own fault I couldn’t stop staring. We’d never spoken before. In fact, I’d only ever seen him from afar at parties like this one, or on television when there was a match on. But right now he was close, close enough for me to realize just how devastatingly and legitimately handsome he was: light blue eyes, a strong jaw, nice lips, attractive nose.

Sigh.

Why were the beautiful ones always such pricks, huh?

He leaned back against the bar, having uncorked the champagne bottle and poured some into a glass. He wore a shit-eating grin as he stared right at Ronan, holding the glass to his lips, his pinky popped. I knew he was getting to Ronan when my brother muttered to Annie under his breath, “Is he fucking shitting me?”

L.H. Cosway

L.H. Cosway has a BA in English Literature and Greek and Roman Civilisation, and an MA in Postcolonial Literature. She lives in Dublin city. Her inspiration to write comes from music. Her favorite things in life include writing stories, vintage clothing, dark cabaret music, food, musical comedy, and of course, books. She thinks that imperfect people are the most interesting kind. They tell the best stories.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

Penny Reid

SEX! It all started with sex, between my parents. Personally I don’t like thinking about it, but whatever works for you is a-ok with me. No judgment. The sex happened in California and much of my life also occurred in that state until I moved from the land of nuts (almonds), wine, silicon… boobs, and heavy traffic to the southeast US. Like most writers I like to write, but let’s get back to sex. Eventually I married and gave birth to 2 small people-children (boy-6, girl-4 as of this writing). By day I’m a biomedical researcher with focus on rare diseases. By night I’m a knitter, sewer, lino block carver, fabric printer, soap maker, and general crafter. By the wee hours of the morning or when I’m intoxicated I love to listen to the voices in my head and let them tell me stories. I hope you enjoy their stories.

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter | Newsletter

 

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Review: In His Corner by Vina Arno

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In His Corner
by: Vina Arno
Publication Date: April 14, 2015
Genre: Romance

WORK OUT
No sex for almost a year could kill a guy, but when you’re the boxer known as the Juggernaut, it’s the price you pay for turning pro. Tommy’s fully dedicated to his craft, until he meets the incredibly gorgeous Dr. Siena Carr. Now he’s looking forward to taking on this prim and proper lady in a wet and wild work-out…

KNOCK OUT
Siena has seen many patients come through the ER, but none as sexy as Tommy Raines. With a nasty cut over his eye, she knows he needs stiches, but after he takes off his shirt, she needs some air. With rock-hard abs and taut biceps, it’s clear this man takes care of his body. And all Siena can think about is letting him take care of hers…

My Rating: 3 stars

Review

In His Corner follows Dr. Siena Carr and Tommy Raines. One fruitful day Tommy walks into Siena’s ER and is smitten by her (and she by him). Their attraction is instant, no amounting of fighting could extinguish it. And, before they know it, their attraction combusts and their left craving more.

Siena is a snob. She is an Ivy League graduate and floats with other Ivy Leagues. Until she meets Tommy. She’s an indecisive character and that did not sit well with me (I’m not too fond of such characters). I did, however, like that she gave time to her patients and connected with them. Tommy, I liked more despite his alpha male-ness (not too fond of alpha males). I love how he stayed true to himself and wasn’t swayed with his fame. I also liked how he wasn’t indecisive and went for what he wanted.

While their sexual chemistry was explored well, I felt their emotional chemistry was rushed. I felt like they hadn’t really resolved their issues before they got back together. Tommy didn’t mind Siena changing him, however, he felt that she is too much of a snob to lower herself to his level. And, Siena could not deal with Tommy’s profession; it completely contradicted her own profession. I wasn’t too fond of the way they resolved the matter, it felt too hasty.

All in all, I did enjoy it (even though some bits irritated me). And, I believe Arno has potential.

I received this book from the author in exchange of an honest review.

About the Author

Vina Arno is a pen name used by Cindy Fazzi. She is a Philippine-born American writer who has worked as a journalist in the Philippines, Taiwan, and the United States. Her two decades of experience as a news reporter and editor includes working for the Associated Press. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Ohio State University. Her short stories have been published in Snake Nation Review, Copperfield Review, and SN Review.

Goodreads | Website

Review: Lucky Me by Saba Kapur

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Lucky Me
by Saba Kapur
Publication Date:
April 5th, 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Women’s Fiction

For eighteen year old Gia Winters, having a movie star for a father, a former Playboy bunny as a mother, a Hollywood mansion, and a closet stocked with Chanel is simply another day in the life.

But her world is turned upside down when her father mysteriously hires a group of bodyguards to trail the family 24/7 and threatening phone calls from a “Dr. D” start buzzing daily.

When Gia scores the coveted role of Miss Golden Globe, she is forced to strike a deal with her bodyguard, Jack, who is almost as arrogant as he is attractive. Juggling Gia’s romantic failures, fashion faux pas, and celebrity obsessions, the duo investigate a series of clues with the help of a police cadet, who has a special set of skills and an even better set of dimples.

But with the Golden Globes just around the corner, danger levels rise higher than her stilettos as Gia learns that the biggest secrets might be the ones buried in her own home.

In a place where the hills have eyes, high school nemeses, bad hair days, raging parties, and stolen kisses, there can only be trouble for a girl who was just starting to consider herself lucky.

amazon
My rating: 3.5 stars

Lucky Me follows Gia Winters, daughter of a movie star father and a former Playboy bunny mother. One day her father mysteriously hires a group of bodyguards, and just when she thought her life could not get any worse she discovers she has a stalker. When she lands the role of Miss Golden Globe, she is forced to make a deal with her bodyguard, Jake.

I tried my best to like Gia, but I was unable to for majority of the book because of her over dramatic behaviour and her obsession with falling in love (or not falling in love). I was not particularly fond of how falling in love/lust or becoming the future Mrs. Blank were the first thoughts she had when meeting a good looking guy. I did, however, enjoy her sense of humour and her behaviour whenever she would become nervous (I could I actually connect with her then). I also enjoyed her love for Channing Tatum and George Clooney.

I really did like Jack, her bodyguard. He was down to earth, and funny. I enjoyed his relationship with Gia, it was really fun to read. Their banter, teasing, flirting, everything was entertaining. The other characters did make leave much of an impact. The mystery stalker plot was well written. I quite like reading about their adventures to solve the mystery.

I would have liked the end to be a bit different, but I still enjoyed what Kapur cooked. It was unpredictable and funny at the same time. I think it is impressive Kapur created such a story at such a young age. She has a lot of potential and I would love to see her writing grow.

I would definitely recommend this for anyone looking for a fluffly read.

ARC kindly provided via NetGalley for the exchange of an honest review.

Review: A Stolen Kiss by Kelsey Keating

A Stolen Kiss
by Kelsey Keating
Stolen Royals Series
Publication Date:
March 1st, 2016
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance

a stolen kiss by kelsey keating.jpg

A stolen kiss. An unstable curse. One big mess in the making.

Derric Harver never expected to amount to anything more than the palace stableboy, but when Princess Maria’s curse keeps her from accepting a prince’s proposal, she turns to him for help, and he doesn’t dare refuse.

With the help of a lady’s maid and a prince, Derric and Maria embark on a dangerous adventure to find the sorceress who cast the curse. Along the way they battle deadly creatures and make new friends–all the while struggling with the undeniable chemistry between them. Reaching their destination won’t be easy, but the true danger peril in the truths they’ve fought for years to keep hidden.

Amazon

My rating: 3 stars

A Broken Kiss follows a stablebay, a princess, her handmaiden, and a prince. They travel the land to find the sorceress to undo the curse placed on the princess. Magical creatures, magical land, and near deaths did not make it an easy one.

This was a light, fluffy story, which started off a bit slow but quickly picked up. The characters were likeable and their relationships were sweet and a great change from the usual.

The prince and princess not falling in love at first sight was a nice, however, I could not connect with Maria falling in love with Daniel/Derric and vice versa. I believed it was the binding that ignited her feelings and the explanation at the end was not satisfactory for me.

However, despite me not feeling the romance, I did enjoy the story overall. I enjoyed Daniel/Derric and Humphrey’s bromance. I felt they had the most substance. Sarah’s evolution was alright, but I just wasn’t feeling Maria’s.

Some of the twists were predictable, but that did not stop me from enjoying it. Overall, it was a fluffy read, something I’d recommend to read if one wants to take a break.

ARC kindly provided via NetGalley for the exchange of an honest review.

ARC April 2016

arc april

ARC is a meme hosted by Octavia and Shelly @Read.Sleep.Repeat. It is a month long challenge of reading as many ARCs, whether physical or electronic, as possible. For more information head over to their site.

It sounds like a fun challenge and great motivator in helping reduce that ARC tbr list. This April, I plan on completing my ARC tbr list (it’s not that big of a list). *fingers crossed*

Here is a list of ARCs I plan on reading:

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 A couple of these are for blog tours in May. Hopefully, I’ll be able to finish them all by the end of April.