Review //\\ King of the Dark

King of the Dark (The Prince’s Assassin #1) by Ariana Nash

In the red corner we have Niko, in the blue corner we have Vasili and in the rainbow corner we have Julian.

I have to admit to being as gullible as Niko, believing in the lies, fooled by the smoke and mirrors and devastated by the betrayals. This is such a twisty story, that sometimes it was difficult to know which way was up. Whilst this isn’t truly a love triangle, it is one heck of a complicated situation and it just goes to show that there is a very fine line between love and hate. Niko’s scenes with… well you’ll have to read and find out.. they were in parts tender and sweet, but also scorching hot and passionate. So unexpected from such a reserved and aloof man.

The story is written entirely from Niko’s point of view, and whilst I would have liked at least one other point of view, it was necessary to retain some mystery and an element of the unknown. Strangely enough, I felt as though I knew Julian and Vasili better than I did Niko, even though I’d only seen them through his eyes. It also turned out that both of them managed to surprise me more than once! I’m not sure why I struggled to connect with and understand Niko for a chunk of the book, though I suspect it was partly because he was so adrift and didn’t really know himself anymore.

There’s a part of me thinks Niko should just stay at his smithy, but that man is a soldier through and through. Loyal to his country, if not the crown, and determined to honour his fallen comrades. Just thinking through that last scene at the castle has made me realise that Vasili has a long way to go before I can like him. We can see throughout that he is a slippery fish and I have a feeling there is a lot more to learn about our erstwhile heroes, not to mention a lot more deceit, manipulation and heartache. Role on Reign of Darkness.

Title – King of the Dark (The Prince’s Assassin #1)
Author – Ariana Nash
Genre – Dark MM Fantasy

“Your love is worthless, it’s your hate I need.” ~Prince Vasili Caville
When King Talos Caville surrendered the war to the elves, soldier Nikolas Yazdan vowed never to serve the royals again. He said the same to the prince who tried to buy his loyalty, and learned the Cavilles don’t take no for an answer.
Whipped for his insolence, Nikolas is forced into slavery in a palace full of vicious, brutal royals. And Prince Vasili Caville is the worst of all. Malicious and cruel, the prince is more viper than man, and someone inside the palace wants him dead. Nikolas would kill the prince himself if not for one thing: Julian, the prince’s personal guard and Niko’s light in the dark. If Nikolas doesn’t submit to Prince Vasili and discover who is plotting against him, Julian will suffer.
But there’s more wrong in the palace than just the prince. The king is on his deathbed, the ferocious elves are creeping closer to the great city of Loreen, and madness stalks the hallways. There’s poison in the Caville court, and if Nikolas doesn’t discover the real reason Prince Vasili tried to buy him with a bag of coin, the palace, the city, and everything he loves, will be lost forever.

Photo by Susanne Jutzeler on

#SixForSunday – Tropes You Hate

I’m back with another Six For Sunday, kindly hosted over at A Little But A Lot (please do visit them too). July is Trope month and so far I’m definitely enjoying it! Today’s prompt is “Tropes You Hate”.

Tropes I hate? As I started writing this I was wondering if there are any tropes I hate, but I just knew that they would start popping into my head as I typed..and…yep there’s the first one now!


Two years ago you couldn’t turn around in the romance world without falling over a Billionaire story. It’s still a popular trope (thank you FSoG – not) with a dedicated following.

I don’t know about you but I like a touch of reality in contemporary books, and billionaires don’t fall into that box. Particularly not when it’s a series of books about best friends who ARE billionaires or best friends who fall for them. Perhaps I’m hanging in the wrong circles, but there doesn’t seem to be a surplus of ultra rich men hanging out in the local hotspots. I haven’t even spotted one, never mind a whole gaggle of them.

Whilst the books have the guys looking like Mister Hottie McHotness in the first photo, reality is probably closer to the dude in picture 2.


I’m pretty certain this is another trope that gained prominence in the romance world courtesy of FSoG. There are a multitude of reasons that this trope rubs me up the wrong way.

First of all, for the vast majority of us, our first time was, at best, awkward. For others it was an experience best forgotten as quickly as possible. And for a few it was a heartbreaking ripping away of their innocence by scum that doesn’t deserve the air they breathe.

Secondly it’s that reinforcement of the sexist attitude that a girls virginity is something that makes her pure and special, but is something a boy needs to lose at the first opportunity. Thankfully this isn’t too prevalent in the world of smutty romance, mainly because we’re there for the sex, the romance, the sex, the HEA and finally the sex. So preaching about how a girl is more special because she is a virgin is not going to enamour me to you. The fact that this myth IS perpetuated by some female authors is somewhat depressing.

Thirdly, which links back to firstly, if he’s as hung as the guys in a romance book, you aren’t going to be going for rounds 2, 3 and 4 with quite the speed that is implied by these books. Nor are you going to be a pro at giving head and deep throating when you’ve barely held hands with a boy before. And lord above don’t get me started on first time anal lubricated by “her juices” or (and this one has me swallowing down the vomit) him spitting on her “dark hole”. For a book that’s happy to include anal sex, to suddenly balk at calling an anus by it’s name (or at least a slang name) and insisting on some ridiculously trite euphemism just makes me cringe.

Finally are those books that have the heroine “selling” her virginity in an auction. Because of course it’s some super hot, dominant and sexy billionaire that buys her. Which again is so realistic (not). Why is a guy, who can get women without even having to make an effort, going to pay a huge amount for one? Go back to the pictures above and lets think about which of those guys is more likely to have to pay for it….

Photo by Pixabay on

Secret/suprise baby

Heaven forbid when this is incorporated into the Virgin or Billionaire trope, and when all three are added to the mix you can guarantee I will be handing out a 1 star rating.

I hate secret babies UNLESS the heroine tried to contact the hero but couldn’t. Any other reason is not acceptable because, although it may be fiction, denying a child the right to know a parent (unless harm could befall said child) is just plain wrong. Zero respect for someone who decides to do that.

And surprise babies are just not romantic/sexy to me. God mine were an effective form of contraception for several years, so reading about a couple with a newborn having constant sex just makes me laugh hysterically. What is worse is when the couple are supposedly infertile, but somehow a “miracle” occurs. To me this feels like a slap in the face to all those couples who do suffer from infertility. It’s as though somehow the book couple get a baby just by “wanting” one enough.

Photo by Rene Asmussen on


This genre is on the up at the moment. Just as fashions change in clothes, so do popular tropes in romance books. Who decides what is going to be the next big thing, heaven knows. But, for the last yearish, the decree has been “thou shall write ye bully book”. Well you will if you want to jump on the latest trend/bandwagon at least.

Some of these books aren’t too awful, and indeed are just variations of the much older enemies-to-lovers trope. Romeo and Juliet anyone? However some have decided that they will combine bully with their version of “dark”. The worst one I had the misfortune to stumble across also threw in the, thankfully declining unless you read paranormal academy books, Reverse Harem (RH) trend. A dark, bully RH “romance”, though where the romance was in it I’m not sure, perhaps it was lost in the chaos of so much else going on.

Generally my gripe with these is that why on earth am I going to cheer on a character who has spent the majority of the book being a complete POS to the other main protagonist. Very often their path to redemption is far too easy and no real reparation is made for craptastic behaviour earlier in the book.

Photo by Pixabay on

Lets keep a big secret until the last chapter

OK so this isn’t actually trope, but it is something that has annoyed the ever loving heck out of me on more than one occasion. I love secrets and suspense but to have the whole story revolving around one big secret, dangled in front of your face like the proverbial carrot, is lazy writing. It’s not a clever plot twist but a total lack of plot.

Lily White is the antithesis of this, with an ability to weave a tale where just as one secret is revealed another one takes its place. Resulting in a pacey story where the mystery/suspense is maintained throughout the story.

Oh and for goodness sake, if you ARE going to do a big secret reveal at the end, do make sure it doesn’t nullify the validity of prior scenes. I read one book where the big exciting twist at the end sort of made everything that went before rather pointless.

Photo by Kat Jayne on

Overbearing not alpha

Yes, yes another not a trope, but it sort of IS a trope. Or at least the alpha bad boy/dominant is a tried and tested trope in romance. However some authors get very confused over what makes an alpha and what makes an asshole douche canoe. Hint – it shouldn’t include the words arrogant twat.

An alpha looks after his woman, might occasionally be a jealous idiot, but above all respects her. He might not like having to let her be independent but they find a compromise. On the other hand an alpha-hole, as I tend to think of them, keeps secrets from his beloved and makes decisions without consulting her because – oh you’re gonna love this one – he always knows whats best for her. What a pathetic, antiquated and patently misogynistic attitude to have. And yet the worst thing is that it is (usually) a woman writing this patronising garbage.

I’m not talking about Total Power Exchange books here, which are a totally different kettle of fish. In those respect for one other is paramount, and whilst the dominant partner may make decisions on behalf of the submissive, it will be because both have already discussed and agreed that he will have that authority over her. No I’m referring to those books where the “hero” knows and understand the heroine’s mind better than she does herself.

Photo by Lukas on

So that’s it, six “tropes” I hate in romance books. Sorry if I’ve just dissed one of your favourites. As my dad loves to say – “One man’s meat is another man’s poison” and that meat makes me gag. Sorry I couldn’t resist that double entendre given today’s topic. Thanks for joining me and well done if you got this far. See you soon!

Review //\\ This Time

This Time by Azaaa Davis

The interesting and well paced plot meant that overall this was an enjoyable read and one that left me wanting to jump straight into the next book in the series.

I loved how the author built this world for us without it feeling as though we were subject to a large information dump. It perhaps isn’t the most detailed world building I’ve seen, but it was still pretty decent and allowed me to build a good mental picture of Nadira’s world. Personally I would have liked a little more detail on the present day Children of Orion organisation. Thankfully it didn’t impact on my enjoyment of the story.

The author used some excellent foreshadowing to hint at future revelations, and I have a suspicion there is much more to learn about Nadira’s situation in future books. Overall I really liked her, she sometimes seemed to make immature decisions, but given the whole situation it wasn’t surprising that Nadira struggled at times. There were some engaging secondary characters that I can’t wait to get to know better. This book very much focused on the main protagonist, developing those secondary characters would add extra depth and interest to the story.

I actually had a couple of books on the go at the same time, one which was an arc on a deadline. Sadly the arc wasn’t “speaking” to me, and I found myself returning to this and wanting to read it instead.  This Time easily held my attention throughout the entirety of the book and it’s definitely one I’m happy to recommend to those who enjoy Urban Fantasy. 

Title – This Time (Nadira Holden, Demon Hunter #1)
Author – Azaaa Davis
Genre – Urban Fantasy/Paranromal

Resurrected into present-day New York, Nadira Holden is asked to save the world … again.
Nadira achieved legendary status when she gave her life to protect humans from the demons. To her, it was yesterday. To the rest of the world, it was twenty years ago.
People have made peace with the demons, worshipping them like celebrities. No one wants to believe that the beautiful creatures who brought magic to humans could be causing the disappearance of so many. When Nadira’s father goes missing, she refuses to play nice. Gloves off. She has to do what she does best. Fight.
Experience why not even death can stop her.
Nadira Holden, Demon Hunter is a fresh urban fantasy series from Azaaa Davis that combines monster-slaying action, family drama, and simmering romance.

Book Blogger Hop

The question today, over on Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer, is “If you can recommend a book from the following genres, what would they be? A book from Romance, NA, YA, Fantasy”. I’m finding I really enjoy joining in with this meme so thank you to Billy for hosting it each week.
This weeks topic was submitted by Tabatha @ Broken Soul Reviews, so thank you for that too.

I’m not strictly speaking a NA or YA reader, unless it’s cross genre, as you will see with my answers! I seem to have to adapt/ think outside the box for most challenges. Or perhaps I like breaking the rules.

Romance Book

This is the genre I read in most, though I tend to read sub-genres such as romantic suspense or dark romance. However there are a few authors whose work I still enjoy, such as Kate Canterbary and Julie Kriss. However I’m going to feature a different author this time, one who generally writes paranormal romance. I’m a little embarrassed that this has the naked male chest cover so overdone in this genre. Please don’t hold that against this great book!

Title – The Rebel’s Redemption (Mershano Empire #3)
Author – Lexi C. Foss
Genre – Contemporary Romance

Even rebels have regrets.
Mine has a name: Jamie.
When news of Jean Perry’s passing reaches me, I feel a moment of selfish relief and hope that I might be able to reconcile the most consequential mistake of my life.
There’s only one problem.
Her sister.
Avery Perry.
The moment I see the way my son looks at her, I’m reminded of a past I thought long buried. There’s more to this arrangement than meets the eye and there’s only one way to learn more.
It’s time to play house.
No feelings. Just observation. And maybe a little seduction along the way.
I am a rebel, after all.
And not all rebels are worthy of redemption.

New Adult Book

So this one crosses over into the fantasy genre, but you work with what you have!

Title – Outliers (The Outliers Saga #1)
Author – Kate L. Mary
Genre – Post-Apocolyptic/Dystopian

In the dusty ruins of the world, three groups exist: the Sovereign, the Fortis, and the Outliers. Within their walled city, exclusive access to the only remaining technology gives the Sovereign an advantage that seems impossible to beat. In exchange for meager scraps and free reign outside the walls, they use the brawn of the Fortis to their advantage while the Outliers struggle to survive. Living on land that has not healed from the poison of the past, and surrounded by dangers too numerous to count, the Outliers have adapted – but to the Sovereign and the Fortis, they are nothing.
Indra is an Outlier. Each day she braves the wastelands, making the dangerous journey from the wilds where she lives to the City so she can serve the Sovereign in order to give her family a better life. Inside the walls, she has no rights and no freedom. Not only is she powerless to resist the Sovereign’s harsh rule, but she is also unable to do anything to save her people from the brutality of the Fortis. For centuries they have made their abuse of Outliers a sport, but when Asa comes to Indra’s rescue, she sees something different in him. Something that marks him as so much more than just a Fortis guard.
But as Indra’s world begins to unravel, even the quiet alliance she has formed with Asa cannot save her from the wrath of the Sovereign. In one life-altering moment, everything Indra has ever known is ripped away, forcing her to face a world even more harsh and unforgiving. Broken and scarred, Indra finds herself on a journey that will challenge everything she’s ever been taught, learning along the way that she’s stronger than she ever imagined. Maybe even strong enough to free her people forever.

Young Adult Book

And this one is a paranormal romance!

Title – Ignite (Solar Academy #1)
Author – Raven Steele
Genre – YA Paranormal Romance

Solar Academy was the last place Rose wanted to go, but after mentally igniting a boy on fire at her current high school, her father insists she attends so she can learn to control her powers. All her life, the fire inside her has raged. It doesn’t help that years earlier Aurora, her mother and the one they call Sleeping Beauty, had unleashed her own fire killing dozens of innocent people.
Now Aurora sleeps in an eternal slumber protected by dark magic no one can break. Which is just as well. Rose is desperate to break free from her mother’s murdering shadow and prove to people that she is more than the flames burning inside her.
With the help of new friends at Solar Academy, Rose finally feels like she belongs. But when she discovers a web of lies surrounding her mother’s imprisonment, she’s forced to confront the past and come face to face with the darkness that also pulled her mother into its evil grasp. The only way to fight it is to release her own raging inferno, even if that means harming her friends and the boy she’s falling in love with.

Fantasy Book

I’ve not featured this author anywhere near as often as she deserves.

Title – Balanced on a Blade’s Edge (Dragon Blood #1)
Author – Lindsay Buroker
Genre – Fantasy

Colonel Ridge Zirkander isn’t the model of military professionalism – he has a tendency to say exactly what’s on his mind, and his record has enough demerits to wallpaper the hull of an airship – but as the best fighter pilot in the Iskandian army, he’s used to a little leniency from his superiors. Until he punches the wrong diplomat in the nose and finds himself issued new orders: take command of a remote prison mine in the inhospitable Ice Blades Mountains. Ridge has never been in charge of anything larger than a flier squadron — what’s he supposed to do with a frozen fortress full of murderers and rapists? Not to mention the strange woman who shows up right before he arrives…
Sardelle Terushan wakes from three hundred years in a mage stasis shelter, only to realize that she is the last of the Referatu, the sorcerers who once helped protect Iskandia from conquerors. Their subterranean mountain community was blown up in a treacherous sneak attack by soldiers who feared their power. Everyone Sardelle ever knew is dead, and the sentient soulblade she has been bonded to since her youth is buried in the core of the mountain. Further, what remains of her home has been infested by bloodthirsty miners commanded by the descendants of the very soldiers who destroyed her people.
Sardelle needs help to reach her soulblade — her only link to her past and her last friend in the world. Her only hope is to pretend she’s one of the prisoners while trying to gain the commander’s trust. But lying isn’t her specialty, especially when the world has changed so much in the intervening centuries, and if Colonel Zirkander figures out who she truly is, he’ll be duty-bound to sentence her to the only acceptable punishment for sorcerers: death.

So there we have my recommendations for this weeks prompts. What are yours?

Review //\\ Hunted

My Rating – 3.5 Stars

When we first meet Jared (and Harper) he is a really sweet, fun and caring guy, so his later transformation was really something else. His alter-ego is definitely sinister and poor Harper most certainly comes off worse when he’s around. Jared’s slow descent into “madness” was very finely crafted, and so terrifyingly believable.

I found it easier to connect with Harper, though that isn’t surprising since Jared wasn’t always quite himself. This meant I didn’t connect with the story with as much emotional depth as I prefer, but I still really enjoyed the story. With both characters being so adorable and cute at first, I was rather puzzled as to just where things were heading, though it quickly becomes clear that not all is well. The plot then rattles along at a rapid pace, with lots of darkness, lots of twists and lots of a very bad man.

Harper remains strong throughout, and I loved her resilience during her trial in the woodland. I did wish nasty things to befall not-Jared, and I had absolutely no idea how the situation would be resolved. Needless to say it was resolved in a very satisfactory way. Hunted is a good addition to the Dirty Heroes collection and shouldn’t be missed.

Title – Hunted
Author – Cassandra Faye (Jennifer Bene)
Genre – Dark Paranormal

“It doesn’t matter how far she runs.
This is my forest, and I always catch my prey.”

As a Loxley, I know the rules, I just never took them seriously. I only knew when I finally brought a girl here it would be special. She would be special. And Harper is… perfect. Now we’re out here, alone, and something’s gone terribly wrong.
I broke the rules, I’m losing myself, and I’m afraid she’s going to pay the price. I need to fight this. I need to protect Harper. We’re meant to be, and I know she feels the same. I don’t want to hurt her but… I have to claim her.
I have to make her mine. Before I do something I can’t take back.

Photo by Ray Bilcliff on

Happy 700th Post!!!

Photo by ViTalko on

I’ve missed so many other milestones on this blog – first birthday, 100 followers, 1000 likes etc. So when I noticed that I had published 699 posts I thought I’d do a little something to mark the occasion of the next one. I actually started out on Blogger, five years ago. Back then it was all about my scrapbooking pages, craft buys and photo challenges that I took part in. However my children were more and more reluctant to pose for photos, and despite promises to share phone pics with me they never did. So gradually the scrapbooking petered out and the reading took over.

I had a break from blogging of 9 months (almost to the day), but the lure of arc books had me dusting things down and sweeping out the cobwebs, so that I could sign up with promotion companies for ARC books. In April of 2019 I moved over to WordPress, because I loved the fact that it would publish automatically to Facebook and Twitter, saving me from wasting precious reading time copy and pasting it myself.

In the last few months, with more free time due to Covid-19 and lockdown in the UK, I’ve joined in weekly book blog memes. These have been surprisingly fun, and have made me read some books that have been on my TBR list for years!

So thank you to all who stop by, click like and leave comments!

Can’t Wait Wednesday

Heartbreaker by Julie Kriss

Title – Heartbreaker
Author – Julie Kriss
Genre – Contemporary Romance
Goodreads –

Holden Whittaker broke my heart when I was eighteen. What kind of guy stands up his prom date and leaves her hanging, waiting for him to show up? A total jerk, that’s who.
Never mind. I left my tiny nowhere town and moved to New York to follow my dream of becoming an actress.
Ten years later, my dream hasn’t happened, and I’m working as the office supply girl at Morgan Financial Holdings, doing my best to keep my paycheck and not get fired by the world’s most terrifying boss. Life couldn’t get much worse, until I get stuck in an elevator and guess who comes to rescue me? In a city of eight million people, it’s Holden.
Turns out he’s moved to New York, too, to be an EMT. I don’t want to see my teenage nemesis as one of the good guys, but he’s out saving lives every day, and he’s still gorgeous and cocky. I could fall for him all over again, and that’s a problem. Because it’s only a matter of time before Holden crushes me again.

My hometown heartbreaker isn’t the guy I left behind anymore. If I could stop hating him, I might belong with him. The question is, which one of us will get hurt first? 

Julie Kriss is one of the few contemporary romance authors I still read. Her characters always have the depth that I need, and her stories consume me. I quickly come to care about her protagonists and find myself living their lives with them. She’s not afraid to make them flawed, either, which just makes them even more lovable.

This book is due out on the 19th and I will most certainly be one-clicking it!

Cover Reveal // Violence

Title: Violence

Series: Antihero Inferno #3

Author: Lily White

Release: July 29, 2020

Genre: Romantic Suspense
Cover Designer: Lori Jackson Design
Photographer: Michelle Lancaster; @lanefotograf 
Model: Lawrence Templar; @Lawrence_Templar



Seventh Circle
Also Known As Ezra Cross

He’s one of a pair.
Identical twin to Damon.
And an enforcer for the Inferno if one is ever needed.

I knew better than to get involved with him.
With his aggression.
With the constant fights.
With the games the twins were known to play with every woman stupid enough to fall for them.

We made a mistake when we met again as adults.
I fell in love.
He fell in love.
His brother fell in love, too.
What used to be a good time is now a tragedy.
Our story is messy.
It’s cruel.
It’s forbidden.
Despite all that, Ezra refuses to let go.

*** Each novel in the series depicts a unique romance, but the plots through each book connect in one world. For the best experience, read the series in order.

Nine Dangerous Men. Nine Unrepentant Sinners. Nine Irresistible Manipulators.

In the Series:

Treachery (Antihero Inferno Book 1)
Amazon US:
Amazon UK:
Amazon CA:
Amazon AU:

Fraud (Antihero Inferno Book #2)
Amazon US:
Amazon CA:
Amazon UK:
Amazon AU:

Author Bio:
Lily White is a romance writer who likes to dabble on the taboo side of eroticism. She is most known for her Masters Series, Target This, Wishing Well, and Asylum. In addition to dark romance Lily writes contemporary romance, taboo romance, and psychological thrillers. Lily enjoys stretching her writing muscles by continuing to challenge herself with each book she publishes.

Social Media Links:

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday – Authors I’ve Read the Most Books By

So the question here is when to start counting from. Do I include my late teens and early to mid twenties, which were longer ago then I care to admit? What about those few books I read whilst my children were young? I know I read a LOT of Enid Blyton as a child, and of course all the Peter and Jane books that we had in the UK for learning to read. My Uni years saw a transition from Catherine Cookson and Meave Binchy to Mercedes Lackey and Katherine Kerr. I won’t include those, mainly because I can’t remember just how many of their books I HAVE read, but I will include those authors I’ve read since getting my kindle 5 years ago and one who I continued to read, even after my children curtailed it as a major pastime.

Most of my featured authors you won’t have heard of, unless you read indie romance authors who self publish. I’m hoping you HAVE heard of the first one though. They aren’t in any particular order.

1 – Terry Pratchett (dozens!)

With the exception of some of the very last books he published, I’ve read most of the discworld series, so I’m assuming he is the author I’ve read most. His magical combination of wit and world building have never disappointed me and I can read his books again and again and again.

2 – Cari Silverwood (30+)

From a rom-com with a paranormal edge, written under another pen name, through sci-fi , fantasy and to historical, I’ve not read a Cari Silverwood book I haven’t loved. And I’ve read one heck of a lot of them!

3 – Pippa DaCosta (30+ if you include her alternative pen name)

This author takes me back to my late teens and early twenties, when I simply couldn’t read enough science fiction and fantasy. Her world building always is amazing and her characters have been known to reduce my to a blubbering mess on more than one occasion. She’s also one of those evil authors who enjoys torturing her readers by killing of characters you love.

4 – Measha Stone (26)

Another who has slowly transformed from writing BDSM with a heart, to much darker stories with challenging anti-heroes. Her Owned and Protected series are my favourite by this author.

5 – Lindsay Buroker (high 20’s)

Lindsay Buroker was one of the first sci-fi/fantasy authors I discovered after I got my e-reader. I was immediately drawn into the worlds she created, falling in love with her characters and devouring all her back catalogue in a few weeks. I still get excited when I see she has a new release out.

6 – Livia Grant (high teens)

I found Livia Grant through the BlackLight series. It’s set in the world of BDSM but is a much more realistic, whilst still fictionalised, account of the lifestyle than a certain more famous series of books. With believable characters and emotional storylines, Livia isn’t afraid to push boundaries.

7 – Chelle Bliss (low 20’s)

Another author I discovered via a free book in my early e-reader days. Her tattooed bad boy heroes are unapologetically alpha, not always from the right side of the tracks and definitely not averse to doing what is necessary to keep their significant other safe. Whilst I’ve moved away from reading this type of contemporary romance, Chelle Bliss is still an author I would recommend.

8 – Amelia Wilde (30+)

Amelia Wilde started her career writing about Billionaires. It’s not a trope I’m overly fond of, but her wonderful characters and cute storylines more than made up for that fact. She’s moved on since then and I particularly enjoyed her Bliss Brothers series.

9 – Jennifer Bene (high teens)

Jennifer Bene is one of my Queens of Darkness. The first book in her Thalia series is pitch black, though it does end on a positive note. She also writes very consensual and quite light BDSM romances, under the BlackLight umbrella, and dark paranormal stories under the pen name Cassandra Faye. She is one of my go-to authors when I want a book that I know won’t disappoint me.

10 – Elin Peer (high teens)

Elin Peer writes romance that challenges both the protagonists AND the reader. She has an ability to create characters who become your new best friend and stories that stay with you long after the last page has been read.

Re-Release // Love in Sienna

Title: Love in Sienna Series

Author: Laura John

Genre: Contemporary Romance\Sports Romance\Rock Star Romance

Cover Designer: Dark City Designs
Editor: Carmen Richter with CPR editing
Publication Date: July 7th, 2020
Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR

Buy Links:
Secret Smiles:
Hidden Kisses:
Guarded Hearts:
Whispered Desires:

A picture containing indoor, young, stage, standing

Description automatically generated


A rock star with demons. A manager with a secret past. Can they overcome it all and find love?


I’m no stranger to hard work.

Hell, I’m no stranger to dealing with jerks. The only good thing my relentless bullying in high school did was make me strong.

As one of the best band managers in the industry I thought I was ready to take on anything.

Then I signed mega rock star Mikey Ecosta.

He doesn’t recognize me as the shy loser from high school and I’m determined to keep it that way.


I always get what I want.

Money, cars, screaming fans… And the women? All I need to do is flash a smile and they’re falling at my feet. As a rockstar, it comes with the territory.

I’ve never had a woman tell me no before. Until I met my smoking hot new manager Tia.

She’s all I want and I’m determined to make her mine.

Secret Smiles is the first book in the Love in Sienna Series. A series of interconnected stand-alones.


A picture containing man, looking, wearing, sitting

Description automatically generated


The world loves to hate him. She hates loving him. Somewhere in between, hearts catch fire.

I’m the man the world loves to hate.

And I don’t care…until I mess up more than I ever have before and my world starts crashing around me. As long as I still have baseball, I’ll be fine.

At least that’s what I think, until a woman walks into my life and makes me start to feel things I’ve never felt before.

She wants to keep us apart—and it’s probably for the best—but I can’t stay away. Is my final play a home run, or is my life doomed to end in tragedy?

Hidden Kisses is book two in the Love in Sienna Series, and can be read as a stand-alone or as part of the series.


A picture containing cake, birthday, holding, young

Description automatically generated


The connection was immediate. Fighting against love is hard. This is the moment to fight for their forever.

I’m living the life most people dream of: making music, surrounded by amazing people.

On the surface, I appear to have to all… but all I really want is for my best friend to admit that she loves me and break down her walls.

From the moment I met her, I knew she was it for me. And her daughter is the perfect little girl I never knew I needed in my life.

Can I make her see that we are destined to be a family, or will the darkness that hides behind her eyes consume her and push me away forever?

Guarded Hearts is book 3 in the Love in Sienna Series, and can be read as a stand-alone or as part of the series.


A picture containing young, little, girl, looking

Description automatically generated


He’s lost in the music. She’s lost in the world. Their only hope is to find each other.

I don’t do relationships.

I don’t date women fifteen years younger than me.

And I definitely don’t fall for my managers. Well, not again, anyway.

But now my new manager is lighting a fire inside me and making it hard to follow my rules.

I should push her away and build up a wall around my heart, but there is something about her that I just can’t shake. Will a relationship with her even work, or are we just destined to crash and burn?

Whispered Desires is book four in the Love in Sienna Series, and can be read as a stand-alone or as part of the series.


A person smiling for the camera

Description automatically generated

Author Bio:
Laura John is a contemporary romance author with a love for music. She lives in Alberta, Canada with her husband, two kids, and one loveable fur-baby. She loves karaoke, makeup, and of course a good glass of wine. She mixes her love of words with her love of music and hopes to transport you into a world you don’t want to leave.

Author Links:


Readers group: