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#Jackie Ashenden
sandythereadingcafe · 11 days ago
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REVIEW:
DEEP RIVER PROMISE (Alaska Homecoming 2) by Jackie Ashenden at The Reading Cafe:
‘inspiring yet heart breaking’
http://www.thereadingcafe.com/deep-river-promise-by-jackie-ashenden-a-review/
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bookswithallie · 2 months ago
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A good old-fashioned cowboy- Maisey Yates, Caitlin Crews, Nicole Helm, Jackie Ashenden.
Hope's story was cute. I love how she finally realized what she needed out of life. Kit is way too serious. I like that the slips make her do something out of her comfort zone. Browning reading romance is everything. I'm loving how Charity and Garrett are both always annoyed with each other. I feel bad that both Pru and Grant hate anything to do with feelings. Having a friendship like these four have is amazing and I'm glad I read 4 stories about it!
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bookswithallie · 2 months ago
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Sky and Duncan want to be with me while I read tonight. Starting a new arc. I think there's three stories in this book. A Good Old-fashioned Cowboy- by: Maisey Yates, Caitlin Crews, Nicole Helm, Jackie Ashenden.
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marjaystuff · a month ago
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New Blog:  Books and Tea
As I sit here with my stack of books and ice tea, I realise that it has been a busy week and I was grateful for reading time, especially since three out of four of the authors are my favorites.  It is difficult to explain what makes an author my favorite, but the easiest way to explain, is when the novel is a little quirky with a great story and fun characters.  I love romances as well no matter the time period.  Kristen Ashley, Chris Keniston and Maisey Yates just knock my socks off with their stories.
Kristen Ashley has a new book - a novella (although her novellas are entire books to other authors) about Jagger Black and the MC called Chaos (ie Hot Bikers).  The stories about Chaos are those of a MC who fought to get themselves to the correct side of the law and to protect their members and their lives. Wild Winds is about Jagger is the youngest son of one of the original members and his love Archie.  I just cannot seem to get enough of the stories about Chaos.  
Chris Keniston’s newest book is called Morgan.  This is another novel in the Farraday’s series.  Morgan and his brothers are the Oklahoma cousins of the Farraday family we are used to reading about.  They own and run a construction company (id hot men who can fix anything)  and are working in the same area as their Texas cousins.  Morgan meets Valerie, a woman who is a producer of TV shows and has a brilliant idea to make a show with the Oklahoma cousins.  Obviously they are meant to be together!  The dogs and the on-going poker games are my favorite parts.  
Maisey Yates is one of the authors of The Old-Fashion Cowboy (with Caitlin Crews, Nicole Helm and Jackie Ashenden). Her characters always seem to find their way into my heart.  I like how she manages to imbue them with innocence and honesty which is quite endearing.  Her newest novel allows us to enjoy four hot cowboys. The jar of 50s era of suggestions for meeting your husband is a riot. Elise Cooper had a chance to interview the authors (https://crimespreemag.com/crimespree-tv-more-cowboy-authors/)
However, in spite of the wonderful reads from my favorite authors, I read a wonderful new author Pamela Terry.  Her book The Sweet Taste of Muscadines was a wonderful novel about going home learning secrets after death.  The novel brings us to a small southern town and the seemingly surprising death of the mother.  However, her death opened up some questions and secrets.  Lila and her brother Henry end up taking a journey to find the truth. 
Elise Cooper has sent in a book review and an interview for my friends who like adventure and suspense.  Her interview with Don Bentley and his book, The Outside Man will intrigue many of you.  She also sent in a book review for Melinda Leigh and her book, Drown Her Sorrows.  Enjoy them.  
Books Read this Week
The Sweet Taste of Muscadines by Pamela Terry
The Old-Fashion Cowboy by Maisey Yates,  Caitlin Crews, Nicole Helm and Jackie Ashenden
Morgan by Chris Keniston
Wild Winds:  A Chaos Novella  by Kristen Ashley
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marjaystuff · a month ago
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A Good Old-Fashion Cowboy by Maisey Yates and others
A Good Old-Fashion Cowboy by Maisey Yates, Caitlin Crews, Nicole Helm and Jackie Ashenden.  This is the second collaboration between these four women, where each author writes about a specific character but the four characters are all part of the story.  Quite frankly, I found moving from story to story flawless. BTW - There were four good old-fashion cowboys… hot cowboys!  
Hope, Charity, Pru and Kit were best friends since they were young.  They always had each other’s backs and loved each other totally.  So when they were all 30 and realized they were unhappy (you need to read the story for more) they started all over again in Jasper Creek, Oregon - home for all of them.  They got a deal with the town and each worked to open her own store.  It is in each story that we meet hot cowboys.  To me one of the quirkiest parts was the house  and the hysterical jar of tasks to catch a man’s attention.  
Once again, the four authors have crafted a marvelous story that weaves around each other.  A Good Old-Fashion Cowboy by Maisey Yates, Caitlin Crews, Nicole Helm and Jackie Ashenden was awesome!
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marjaystuff · 2 months ago
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New Blog:  Tsundoku
Tsundoku (Japanese: 積ん読) is acquiring reading materials but letting them pile up in one's home without reading them. This is not a word that carries any negative stigma in Japan. Tsundoku carries the underlying understanding that there is at least an intention to read the books you collect. (from Google)
I think Tsundoku is a great way to describe my life with books.  It is hard not to buy books when the price is sooo awesome and I know someday I will want to read them. The problem is the word someday. Like when will that be?  
At this point, I think it would take years and years to read all the books I have stacked (including the kindle too). I have not dared to go into any bookstores during the pandemic.  However, books have still found their way into my house.  Luckily the stacks are still negotiable - mostly.  AND that does not include the authors I love to read, that are still writing books.  Never mind the authors who I will find in the future.
Speaking about favorite authors, I read some of my favorites this week!  
I read Kristen Ashley and her newest book Still Standing (http://marjay.simplesite.com/239538826). The book was vintage Kristen Ashley with her big, bad, HOT, alpha bikers. This is a whole new series (Wild West MC) and set in a new locale with new seriously bad dudes. While the book followed the pattern of most books of this sort, Kristen upped the hotness and interesting characters factor to make it a fun read.   
I was excited to read another favorite author this week too.   Kristin Hannah’s newest book is called The Four Winds (http://marjay.simplesite.com/239538831) It is an emotional read! The book is set during the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl.  I felt the wind blowing and was sure there was dust blowing madly.  Her books are always great reads.  Interestingly, Elise actually interviewed Kristin Hannah about this same book this week. Cool huh?
Elise sent us in the great interview with Kristin Hannah (http://marjay.simplesite.com/239538810) AND a review of Alaskan Mountain Rescue (http://marjay.simplesite.com/443139528).  If you haven’t watched her interview from CrimespreeTV - You need to see it!  Elise chats with bestselling authors of stories featuring cowboys:  Maisey Yates, Caitlin Crews, Nicole Helm, and Jackie Ashenden (https://crimespreemag.com/crimespree-tv-more-cowboy-authors/)
Books Read this Week
The Project by Courtney Summer
Still Standing by Kristen Ashley
The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah
Currently Reading:  Hit Me With Your Best Scot
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marjaystuff · 2 months ago
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Elise Cooper Interviews Maisey Yates
The Rancher’s Wager by Maisey Yates will remind readers of a romantic western TV show. People can picture the hero and heroine in a poker game where losing the bet means the loser must be the other’s ranch hand.  
The plot has rancher Jackson Cooper facing off in a charity poker game against his rival Cricket Maxfield, where the stakes get personal. Whoever loses must be the others’ worker for thirty days.  Jackson intentionally loses, or so he thinks, to get Cricket to realize she is not cut out for ranching.  At that point he will swoop in and buy her out.  Cricket’s motive for agreeing to the bet, and winning, was to get closer to Jackson to understand her own backstory. From there fireworks ignite the relationship.
As with all her books, this novel being no difference, Yates writes fun plots, riveting relationships, and characters readers want to get to know.  
Elise Cooper:  Why write this type of plot line?
Maisey Yates: I wrote it when there was a total lockdown, during the month of April.  I wanted to write something that was fun, and not about Covid.  It is about the female protagonist winning her male counterpart in a poker game.  It has old school romance and enables the readers to escape.  Basically, I made my own fun, so I wrote this.
EC:  Would you ever write Covid into your plots?
MY: Only if there is a long- term change.  Then it will make its way into my stories.  For example, after 911 the way tickets at the airport, or the way we go through security has changed.  If there is a permanent modification caused by Covid, writers will adopt it, take it on board, and have it organically put into a story.  
EC:  There is a feature to this book that is interesting?
MY:  Romance is filled with universal emotions.  This book is over the top like a soap opera.  Nicole Helm, who writes romantic suspense, is a huge soap opera fan.  She is the devil on my shoulder, who thinks the plot fits into the pocket of a soap opera.
EC:  How would you describe Jackson?
MY:  A dark horse.  He is a manipulator who thinks he is in control.  Hard-headed, strong, stubborn, tough, and irritating, but an overall good guy.  
EC:  How would you describe Cricket?
MY:  A free spirited determined tomboy.  She is one of the few characters I wrote with curly hair. I think she is naïve, wounded, yet, strong, and a go-getter.  She is making her own way because of her competitive spirit, fierceness, and stubbornness.
EC:  Why the curly hair?
MY:  My daughter has curly hair and she told me whenever a TV show has someone do a make -over they straighten their hair.  I have now decided to write more curly hair heroines into my stories to give her a shout-out.
EC:  What is the sister’s relationship?
MY:  Her older sisters’, Emerson and Wren, are different type of heroines because they are more worldly, have more experience with men, and are business savvy. They are more sophisticated.  Cricket is more the type of heroine I usually write, as she comes of age.  She is more sheltered and has always felt as an outsider. In some ways she felt inferior to her sisters, seeing them as intimidating and elegant.  Yet, the older ones felt protective of her.
EC:  How about the relationship between Jackson and Cricket?
MY:  A long time ago, an early reviewer said of my heroines that they were “like a virgin Barbie who did not exist until the hero took her out of her box.”  This is me because I like those stories.  Cricket does not know why she is so attracted to him and attributes it to the wrong thing.  She has a crush on him, but thinks he is unattainable.  I am a sucker for the older guy with the younger heroine.  There was a seed there, but it needed the right time to bloom. In some ways both are emotionally immature, and he underestimated her.  He knows more about the world and sexual experience, but she teaches him how to love.  
EC:  Why does he call her “Little Cricket?”
MY: From my own personal experience with my husband, I saw Cricket as knowing he existed, but in some ways looks on him as a big brother. He called her “Little Cricket, because he saw her as a kid sister and wanted to distance himself from her.
EC:  How does poker play a role in the story? There are a lot of poker references that are not during the poker game?
MY: In looking back you must be referring to “bets,” “bad hand,” “folded,” and “game over.”  I did not do it consciously. I was very connected to the story and characters.  Everything just seemed to flow.  I have some poker experience since on New Years’ Eve, for a time, my family played a dime poker game.
EC:  You have a lot of books coming out?
MY:  Out in January will be a book I wrote with three other authors:  Jackie Ashenden, Caitlin Crews, and Nicole Helm. It is titled A Good Old-Fashioned Cowboy.  The plot has four friends who open up shops on main street.  They are staying in Grandma June’s house, which is now a vacation rental.  They make a pact where no one can use their phones, no technology, and use tips from a 1940’s magazine to meet men.
My new women’s fiction comes out in May. It is titled, Confessions From The Quilting Circle. It’s about three sisters who decided to finish their late grandmother’s memory quilt, along with their mother, and how each fabric they select for the quilt reveals family secrets and brings them to a place of sharing their own secrets. I used some of my own family history for this book, so it was a fun one to write.
Coming out in June is The Heartbreaker of Echo Past.  This will be Iris’ story.  I think she is based on me, but single.  I would also love to be at home watching British TV, cooking, and not going out.  She and I have a lot in common. She opens a business, and her landlord is a mountain man.
Rancher’s Christmas Storm is out at the end of September.  It is not written yet but will be Honey Cooper’s story. Readers will also find out the identity of the last son of Hank Dalton.
Out in October, Rodeo Christmas at Evergreen Ranch and out in December is True Cowboy of Sunset Ridge.  These are the cousin books and will be the last, for now, of the Gold Valley books.
In 2022 a new series will come out.  It has four ranching families that own a huge parcel of land.  It is a massive spread across eight miles. There will be family feuds and romances.  The ranches are like a small town and a community.
THANK YOU!!
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standavis · 4 months ago
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Dirty Devil - Jackie Ashenden https://ift.tt/36Wzv8f
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marjaystuff · 5 months ago
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The Last Christmas Cowboy
Claiming The Rancher’s Heir
Maisey Yates
Harlequin Pub.
The Last Christmas Cowboy and Claiming The Rancher’s Heir by Maisy Yates are holiday gifts for anyone who reads her stories.  During this time of year people need to put smiles on their faces, especially after enduring 2020, and these books do just that.
The Last Christmas Cowboy delves into how people must endure after losing a loved one.  Both the hero, Logan Heath and the heroine, Rose Daniels, lost their parents in the same plane crash. Both have survivor’s guilt and wish the crash never happened.  Logan losing his mother and Rose losing both her parents shattered their world, which is probably why they became each other’s friend and confidant. Now seventeen years later, they are still broken but are dealing with it differently, even as they work the ranch together.
After Rose decides to become a matchmaker to her beloved older sister, Iris, she confides in Logan and enlists his help.  She refuses to accept his assertion that she knows nothing about chemistry until they share an electrifying kiss.  The plot has Rose realizing she must decide if she wants the relationship with Logan to change from friend to something more, while he battles self-restraint and desire.  
Claiming The Rancher’s Heir is an enemy to lover story. On the surface, Wren Maxfield and Creed Cooper hate each other. But, to benefit both of their wineries, they're willing to set aside their differences and work together. Yet, it is very difficult for both to set aside their animosity and stop trading barbed comments. It becomes clear that both of them are responding with hostility in order to hide their attraction to one another. What makes this story even better is the soul-searching both are doing to try to find the person they truly want to be.
Both these books will have readers’ constantly turning the pages.  Per usual, Yates writes terrific characters with great sparring dialogue, not to mention an interesting relationship story.
Elise Cooper:  In Claiming the Rancher’s Heir, why an enemy to lover story?
Maisey Yates: I was at this vacation rental, doing research for my next women’s fiction novel.  I sat down at the kitchen table and in my head popped the heroine saying the only way I would dance with you is on your grave.  I wanted this antagonistic relationship because I enjoy writing that kind of banter.  It was a lot of fun to write.
EC:  How would you describe the relationship?
MY:  Hostility covered up this intense attraction between the two of them.  With these shorter books I don’t like to go half-way because there is not a lot of time to get into the nuance of things.  In many ways the hero pushed the heroine to change.
EC:  How would you describe the heroine, Wren?
MY:  She thinks she has it together but really does not.  She is smart and polished with a little bit of wildness.  Sometimes stubborn, prissy, and controlling, but it is used to cover up the fact she cannot find herself.  
EC:  What role did her parents play in shaping who Wren is today?
MY:  Her parents had a strong expectation of who she is supposed to be.  Her father is controlling, difficult, and sleezy.  Wren wanted to please him so tried to be the person he wanted.  Now she is in a crisis because her father is not the person who she thought him to be.  She has to find herself because she was living her life for him, but now considers him an awful person.
EC:  How would you describe the hero, Cooper?
MY:  Wounded because of his family history.  He appears to be a laid-back cowboy type, which is what gets on Wren’s nerves.  That is actually a cover because when things happen, he is more in control.   Overall, he is rustic, self-confidant, and as with all my heroes he is a shade arrogant.
EC:  The role of the setting?
MY:  It is set in Oregon’s wine country, which is where I live.  They work together to promote the wine trade with events and tourism.  It is funny, even though I do not drink, I use wineries in a lot of my books.  I wanted to capture the wine country vibe we have in Southern Oregon.  There is a spirit of collaboration rather than competition.
EC:  The other book, The Last Christmas Cowboy, has a heroine Rose?
MY:  She is based on Emma in Jane Austin.  I think she means well, but thinks she knows it all.  Unfortunately, she misreads situations.  She has hope and enthusiasm, an outdoor girl who is impulsive and direct.
EC: How would you describe the hero, Logan?
MY:  He is an older hero who wants to do what is right.  Loyal, a solid guy, supportive, protective, and caring.
EC:  How would you describe the relationship?
MY:  He is the best friend of Rose’s older brother. He feels guilty because he is very much attracted to Rose.  He respects her as a friend and tries very hard to have a platonic relationship.  I have this quote in the book, “Rose had taken something dark and full of guilt and shame and has turned it into the most beautiful moment he could’ve asked for.  She had taken his grief and turned it into joy. She had taken guilt and turned it into love.  She had taken a broken man and made him whole.”  Although Rose also felt guilt and sadness, she channeled it into hope. They found their way out of grief together, with a willingness to help each other heal.
EC:  What about Rose’s older sister, Iris.  What was their relationship?
MY:  Iris was the maternal character.  Rose sells her short, thinking she can never find a man.  She sees Iris as dependable, and soft, who was always the caregiver.  
EC:  What about your next books?
MY:  The next book will be Iris’ book and titled, The HeartBreaker of Echo Past.  It is due out in June 2021.  Her hero is a mountain man with a wounded and dark past.  
Out in January of next year is Cricket’s book, The Rancher’s Heir.  She is the youngest sister of Wren.  It is a little bit old school romance.  She feels she is much more like the Coopers’ family and thinks maybe she is Cash Cooper’s daughter.  She is not.  I wrote this during the lockdown and wanted a firecracker kind of heroine.  Maybe in the fourth book, I will put in a romance between Cooper’s dad and Wren’s mom.
Also, out in January will be a book I wrote with three other authors:  Jackie Ashenden, Caitlin Crews, and Nicole Helm. It is titled A Good Old-Fashioned Cowboy.  The plot has four friends who open up shops on main street.  They are staying in Grandma June’s house, which is now a vacation rental.  They make a pact where no one can use their phones, no technology.  
My new women’s fiction comes out in May of next year. It is titled, Confessions From The Quilting Circle. It’s about three sisters who decided to finish their late grandmother’s memory quilt, along with their mother, and how each fabric they select for the quilt reveals family secrets and brings them to a place of sharing their own secrets. I used some of my own family history for this book, so it was a fun one to write.
THANK YOU!!
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marjaystuff · 8 months ago
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New Blog:  Ink and Paper
“A bunch of ink and paper can change your life.” This is a quote from the newest Susan Wiggs book. (The Lost and Found Bookshop pp 221)  Since I found the quote I have been reflecting on how much - how important a bunch of ink and paper have been in my life.  From the daily newspapers, monthly magazines and all the books I read, the worth is unimaginable.  Then  when you include all the emotions that the ink and paper have brought me the worth becomes inconceivable.  I have shared before with you, how important reading was to my family, with all the library and bookstore visits. The fact that my livelihood is teaching, especially in the area of reading adds to the importance.  Last year when I found out I had glaucoma - my first question was about whether I could read or not. Luckily this variety of glaucoma had a successful medical intervention and didn’t interrupt my reading for long.   I can’t even quantify the number of hours that have gone into me reading about other people, other times, even other worlds.  If our life is based on choices and fate, I have chosen mine, tying my kite onto a bunch of ink and paper.  As Robert Frost said, “and that has made all the difference.” (Robert Frost’s poem, The Road Not Taken, 1916)  
This week’s reading might have started out with ink and paper, but the books produced were wonderful to read.  I enjoyed the two books by Dianne Freeman.  The main character, Frances is a widow of means who is enjoying her independence but finding the man next door and the mysteries he is immersed in even more enjoyable.  The best book I read this week was The Lost and Found Bookshop by Susan Wiggs.  The storyline, with the historical artifacts and people, makes the book interesting.  The main character, Natalie,  was a person that you wanted to succeed against all odds.  
Elise Cooper was busy this week.  She sent us in two interviews:  Megan Crane and Caitlin Crews.  The twist is that the two authors are the same person.  When she writes under Megan Crane, the books have ‘high octane heroes and fearless heroines’, and when she writes under Caitlin Crews are ‘classic romances that are sophisticated and emotional’
Books read this week:
A Lady’s Guide to Gossip and Murder by Dianne Freeman
A Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Murder by Dianne Freeman
Come Home to Deep River by Jackie Ashenden
The Lost and Found Bookshop by Susan Wiggs
Still Reading:
A Lady’s Dream Come True by Grace Burrowes (not reviewed yet)
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marjaystuff · 8 months ago
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Come Home to Deep River by Jackie Ashenden
Come Home to Deep River by Jackie Ashenden is the first book in a series about the Alaskan town of Deep River.  While she is not a new author, this is the first of her books I have read and looks to be a newer direction for her.  Deep River is difficult to get to and does not offer many opportunities to young people.  Interestingly the town is owned by one person and the people who live there, rent or lease the land with mineral rights.  The people who live there are independent and very individualistic in their views. 
We meet Silas Quinn (one of the new owners and a prior resident) who came into town to share the news about how he is now one of the owners AND there seems to be oil under the town.  The information he offers causes as many opinions as there are people.  Silas spends time with people looking for a solution for consensus.
Meanwhile Hope Dawson could never leave Deep River.  She wanted to get an English degree and travel to different places.  Instead she has ended up taking care of her mother and running her grandfather’s bar.  Silas always had a crush on her and she found his presence unsettling.
The storyline is somewhat predictable when it comes to Hope and Silas, but it is one you want to happen.  The people of the town and the growth that Hope and Silas need is interesting and helps the story become more interesting.  The book moved right along and I liked the ending of the novel with all the interesting characters. Come Home to Deep River by Jackie Ashenden was a good read. 
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the-book-queen · 9 months ago
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Hide your wallets, it’s that time again! #TBQsBookDeals Your Tuesday thread of #romancedeals is ready, FREE to $1.99. Happy shopping! 📚❤
    FREE ✦ The Langley Sisters (4-6) by Wendy Vella
3 books including:
~ Class differences (duke's daughter + self-made gentleman)
~ Fake relationship
~ Jaded hero + feisty debutante
#HistoricalRomance (MF) | https://amzn.to/2Zjt9ed 
$0.99 ✦ True Love at the Lonely Hearts Bookshop by Annie Darling
A case of mistaken identity forces her to introduce a stranger as her boyfriend. Since he actually needs a fake date for a wedding, this is fine with him.
#ContemporaryRomance (MF) | https://amzn.to/3glMjqX 
$0.99 ✦ Lily and the Duke by Helen Hardt
Aspiring writer/painter wants to see the hero's famous art collection . . . and to gain some "worldly experience through a passionate affair with the notorious Duke".
#HistoricalRomance (MF) | https://amzn.to/3if9vc4 
$1.99 ✦ The Bride Test by Helen Hoang
Autistic hero. His mother goes to Vietnam and brings home the heroine to be his wife.
TBQ Rec
#ContemporaryRomance (MF) | https://amzn.to/2VtQCIm 
$1.99 ✦ Sexy Beast by Jackie Ashenden
1st POV. Friends to lovers. She wants a sexual favor from him -- she thinks she can't orgasm. He's more than happy to prove her wrong.
#ContemporaryRomance (MF) | https://amzn.to/2VqbArK 
 Putting these lists together takes time. If you appreciate this content, please consider buying me a Ko-Fi. http://ko-fi.com/danielletbq
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lacrimsonfemme · 9 months ago
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Review: The Big, Bad Billionaire
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The Big, Bad Billionaire by Jackie Ashenden My rating: 3 of 5 stars Sexy, primal, dangerous Rafe is back. Overcoming a brutal and punishing youth at the cruel and sadistic hands of his grandfather, Rafe has a plan. The destruction of his father will be a nice and lovely start. Quite frankly, I'm rooting for Rafe as his negligent father deserve his distain. This is supposed to be a reinterpretation of "Little Red Riding Hood". As a fan of reinterpreted erotic versions of fairy tales, I picked this story up. I couldn't quite see the wolf, grandmother, Red and the hunter in this story. Instead, I am taken into an intensely focused stalker like story with Rafe hunting down the only female he wants, Ella. Ella as a child loved being around Rafe. He was her big protector. This changed when the adults scared her from him. She never forgot him, just stored her cherished memories of him in a locked box in her mind. When the two meet again, sparks fly. This is a deliciously erotic novel with an alpha male determined to woo and win the innocent young female. I guess one could say that Rafe has wolfish behaviours. This is an enjoyable erotica recommended for readers who enjoy ruthless males with a hearts of gold. *provided by https://www.netgalley.com">NetGalley
via Blogger https://ift.tt/2AedoN5
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lovelyloveday · a year ago
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Sexy Beast by Jackie Ashenden  http://bit.ly/38whQlj  #romance @JackieAshenden #JackieAshenden @HarlequinBooks
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marjaystuff · a year ago
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Sometimes you need to be a flamingo
Summer is on the way.  Not for a while, but I am beginning to feel hopeful for the changes in sunlight and warmth.  My friend found me a new flamingo for the yard. Although it is inside right now, it will eventually move to the garden with the others.  I have to admit, my landlord HATES them and thinks they look cheap, so I put out more. (Between us - right?)  I have decided to deal with all the changes that are coming in my life, I need to be more like a flamingo.  
Flamingos always hang out with friends.  They usually hang out in large flocks and are sometimes seen moving together in like a dance.  They work together to protect the flock.  This week, I did hang out with friends, who are going through changes too.  It was a relief to speak to the elephant in all our lives and feel the support and strength in numbers.   And to laugh.  I love laughing with them!
Flamingoes are nonmigratory.  They do not move with the seasons and stay in their established area.  That is already so me - I love home and do not feel the need to wander too far from home.  I know some people do not understand, but it is what it is.  Watching the subtle changes of each day and the rhythm of my world gives me comfort.  Flamingos live in water, too bad it is the wrong season for me…. Oh well.
The food flamingos eat determines the colors of their feathers.  I always try to eat healthy, but as with most people I am not good at following through when I am tired and/or hungry.  Although to be honest, I am not eating algae and shrimp like creatures!  Eating healthy keeps me in the pink and then there are my bright tattoos that also add all sorts of color.   
The hardest part for me is that sometimes you need to put your foot down, even if you are on one leg.  I am not good at that in general, but like to present as I am.  Changes are coming…. I am holding on to my pink feathers with at least one leg down.
Elise Cooper has an interview with the authors of A Cowboy for All Season which are Maisey Yates, Caitlin Crews, Nicole Helm, and Jackie Ashenden.  The book is a great read and the interview really allows you to see how a book like this is written.  AND best yet… there is going to be more!
Have a good week!   
Books read this week
One Little Lie by Colleen Coble
City Spies by James Ponti
Cabin 1 by Amanda McKinney
Cabin 2 by Amanda McKinney
Cabin 3 by Amanda McKinney
My Way to You by Catherine Bybee
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marjaystuff · a year ago
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Elise Cooper interviews Maisey Yates, Catlin Crews, Nicole Helm and Jackie Ashenden
A Cowboy For All Seasons written by the cowgirl quartet, Maisey Yates, Caitlin Crews, Nicole Helm, and Jackie Ashenden is billed as an anthology, but is actually a compilation since the four stories flow into one riveting plot.  It will remind readers of the Dixie Chick song “Cowboy Take Me Away,” as they are swept up by the characters and plot line. The four heroines tangle with their hard headed cowboys as they find love, healing, and the true meaning of family.
After her passing, June Gable sent to all four of her grandchildren a handwritten bequest, to spend a season at her beloved farmhouse in Jasper Creek, Oregon, before they sell it. These cousins were once as close as sisters, but time and family betrayals have pushed them apart. Grandma June knew her grandchildren had eyes for only one man, so she orchestrated matchmaking scenarios to bring the couples together.
Spring has Keira Long returning to her small hometown after successfully making it in the big city of Seattle. Grandma June has asked her to work alongside Remy West to tend to the land and cattle. But in doing so she must come to grips with her first true love, a relationship she broke up to find her independent way.  This is a story of second chances at romance with her true love. Coming in the way is the family parental issues that both must come to grips with and overcome.
Summer has childhood friends, JJ Frost and Cade Matthewson, coming together to help his two daughters, Lora and Ellie, have a fun summer vacation. Having experienced something similar to what the girls are going through JJ understands the feeling of abandonment by a mother.  Both Cade and JJ must allow each other to share their feelings as they open up their hearts.
Fall has Lila Frost optimistically returning to plan the Red Star Holiday Bizarre. Grandma June asked her to take it over and to work with Everett McCall whose ranch is where it will be held.  Lila had a crush on Everett as a child and wonders if he sees her as a woman.  Will both be able to overlook their ten-year gap in age? Lila must help him take down the wall he has built to protect himself from being hurt by others. Besides trying to repair the relationship with Everett she also is trying to figure out how to reconnect with her sister JJ.
Winter has Bella Jackson returning.  She is probably the most broken of all the cousins. Isolated by her mother from the rest of the family including Grandma June she has to learn how to ask for help.  Willing to ignore her requests to do everything on her own, Noah Faraday steps in to repair the farmhouse and both his and her emotions.
The thread that ties all these stories together is reconnecting. Each of the heroines needs to reunite with one another and to forge a relationship with their lost loves.  These stories blended together as one even though there were four different authors, allowing readers to take a journey with the characters as they try to reunite with each other.
Elise Cooper: How did you get the idea?
Maisey Yates:  I was talking to Nicole and joked about book pitches.  I was totally kidding, but the next day I started thinking about the possibility of writing a story centered around four people staying at a farmhouse.  I texted the other authors, and got them on board.  We actually had an auction to see which publishing house would get the story.  
Maisey, Nicole, Caitlin, Jackie:  It came out of the fact we were all friends.  We shared everything we wrote. It just seemed to flow together and felt very organic.  
Caitlin Crews:  Nicole wrote those wonderful grandmother letters that started off each story. Jackie wrote the first story so we knew where we were all going.  
EC:  Since there was a crossover of characters how did that work?
Jackie Ashenden: Since they were all in my story, I wrote the other heroines and asked each author if what I wrote was out of character, but no one rewrote the lines.  We all knew each other’s character very well.  
EC:  How about the seasons, how did that come about?
Caitlin:  Maisey came up with the year of the cowboy.  I thought since it is a year let’s break it into seasons.  The original title was The Year of the Cowboy.
Nicole Helm:  I chose summer because my hero has two children.  I wanted them to be a large part of the story and did not want them to be in school.  
Maisey:  I love the season of fall.  It was October when we pitched it and as I was driving by my daughter’s school, I saw the sign, “Red Star Holiday Bizarre.” I ripped off the name and used it in the book.
Jackie:  They thought to give me winter because it was freezing and sad.  I had never written about snow or Christmas so I found it challenging.  Thankfully, everything magically fell into place.
EC:  How did the farmhouse come about?
Maisey:  Some of us were staying at a farmhouse in Illinois.  It was very similar to the one Caitlin’s husband drew for us.  In this book, with the farmhouse, it felt a bit mystical.  It was funny, how we all had the same farmhouse in our heads.
EC:  How would you describe Grandma June?
Nicole:  Even though she was a great grandmother, her daughters were not great mothers.  I knew people who were not great parents, but learned from their past mistakes.  I also think that sometimes we cannot control how people turn out.  I think June was outspoken, accessible, salty, and brave.  She could not go back in time but did try to make changes for the future. Like the four cousins, I miss my grandparents so much.  What a great thing it would be to have a magic farmhouse.  My grandmother had a paperweight that I used in the story.  I put in tidbits that reminded me of my grandma.  
Caitlin:  Both my grandparents have passed.  I dedicated this story to them.  I would love to be able to communicate with them.
EC:  How would you describe the parents?
Caitlin:  Most of the parents were selfish and self-centered.  They cared more about themselves than their children.  
EC:  How would you describe Bella, Noah, and their relationship?
Jackie:  BELLA is stubborn, determined, vulnerable, kind, and guarded.  She is like most of my   heroes.
NOAH is grumpy, a man of few words, a loner, and protective.
THEIR RELATIONSHIP is based on a connection both tried to deny.  Bella doesn’t want Noah around because she is ashamed of the terrible crush she has on him.
EC:  How would you describe Keira, Remy, and their relationship?
Caitlin:  KEIRA is elegant.  She is a lost-soul and fragile but would argue with that description.  Because she is the first one to live in the farmhouse she is grieving a bit more than the others who had more time to process. Being the oldest she tended to have a slightly different relationship with her grandmother.  Some grandmothers favor the oldest.
REMY is angry, heart-broken, hard-headed, and basically a cowboy.
THEIR RELATIONSHIP has two different parts, one they had and one they will have. The previous one was destined to fall apart because they could not communicate, had secrets, and they were so young.  The one today looks back at the failures of the first time, which enabled them to build a stronger structure going forward. They became friends before lovers.
EC:  How would you describe JJ, Cade, his daughters, and their relationship?
Nicole:  JJ is serious, practical, and sometimes tries to hide her emotional hurt. She is compulsive and not a dreamer, with a focus on being helpful.  
CADE’s main focus is to be a good dad. He is responsible.
LORA and ELLIE are aware that their mom left them.  The older one is snarkier and grumpier.  The younger one is a dreamer.
RELATIONSHIP WITH THE GIRLS was based on my family. JJ first thought of herself as just a baby-sitter.  But she became emotionally involved because what the girls went through was similar to her own backstory.  She is reliving her past through them because she lost her relationship with her sister.  
CADE and JJ’s RELATIONSHIP was really good for each other.  At first, JJ and Cade were very guarded because they were hurt in the past.  They rely on each other and then let the attraction take over.  They developed a friendship first.
EC:  How would you describe Lila, Everett, and their relationship?
Maisey:  LILA feels she has boundless options and can always make things turn out OK. She wanted to be an optimist instead of being like her mother who was sad and bitter.  Everett was the first time that did not happen.  She is determined, cheerful, optimistic, creative, and impetus.  
EVERETT has the need to think that controlling the outcome will make things turn out all right.  He is responsible, practical, and a realist.  
THEIR RELATIONSHIP had them both butting heads since they are control freaks.  They have a ten-year gap in their age difference.  Lila saw him as a fantasy at first, but then realizes he has his own issues.  Both had to overcome barriers. Everett tried to protect himself from the bad things but also the good things.  They realized that if there was to be a long-term commitment there will be ups/downs and give and take. I wrote this book quote, “Love wasn’t just rainbows, and fairy-tale endings.  Love was acceptance.  Love was patient. Love was fifty-fifty. Love bore burdens. Love hoped.  Love believed.”
EC:  Do you have Christmas decorations like you wrote about?
Jackie:  When I was writing that scene, I thought about the Christmas decorations I have.
EC:  There is a quote about cities.  Are you a country girl or a city gal?
Caitlin:  You are referring to the book quote, “Country roads, sooner or later they get you where you need to go.” I have lived in cities all my life until about four years ago.  We moved to rural Oregon.  I am aware of the difference in lifestyles and like to write characters that represent small towns.  
EC:  Do you garden?
Nicole:  I do not.  My grandmother and my mom were big gardeners.  By putting those scenes in the book, I was paying homage to them.
EC: Iris Cob Horses?
Maisey: I was flying to Atlanta in October and next to me was a cowboy.  He was telling me how profitable these horses are and showed me pictures.  I told him I was totally going to steal the idea and I did.  Unfortunately, I know nothing about horses.
EC:  Can you give a shout out about your next books?
Maisey:  There is a strong possibility there will be a sequel to this book with new characters, but we hope to bring in these characters as well.  Out in May will be Secrets From A Happy Marriage.  It is my first women’s fiction book that focuses on family relationships with some romance.  It is about women who have a Lighthouse Inn B & B.
Nicole: I have a new book series that started last week, called South Dakota Showdown.  It has six brothers who are police officers who are trying to bring down their father, the head of a motorcycle gang.  It is romantic suspense.
Jackie: Sexy Beast is the next book in the billionaire series.  It has a billionaire and his neighbor, a best friend, who become involved.
Caitlin: In the summer will be book 4 in the “Alaska Force series.” It is written under the name Megan Crane and is titled Delta Force and has the heroine escaping her criminal family by changing her identity. She meets the leader of the Alaska Force that helps her survive her demons.
THANK YOU!!
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dargeereads · a year ago
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A Cowboy for All Seasons anthology
releasing February 24, 2020
5 stars
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We get a  little bit of everything here, a second chance romance, a single-dad romance,  a first love romance, and a former step-siblings romance. All are packed with  emotions, all have a rocky ride to the HEA, and all have our women ending up  with their cowboy <3
 Spring –  Caitlin Crews
Watching  Remy and Keira now as mature adults, and hearing how they were when they were  younger, made this second-chance all the sweeter. Having them realize they  were always still in love with each other, and making sure they listened to,  and talked to, each other this time around, yeah, I shed some tears for them.  Their story was poignant, sexy, and sweet, in other words, a most wonderful  romance!
 Summer –  Nicole Helm
Oh sweet  JJ, you may have had problems expressing your emotions, but you had me  expressing mine, repeatedly, as your story unfolded. Throw in those two  motherless little girls, and I was lost in your heart, even before you fell  for their cowboy dad. And when you finally figured it all out, I was so happy  for you, so happy you finally found your way and let yourself feel!
 Autumn –  Maisey Yates
Lila and  Everett, both had such buried pain, but didn’t acknowledge it was there.  Shaped by their parents, but doing the opposite, to find that happiness it  seemed they never got from those who should have loved them the most. But  burying that pain only meant it bubbled up when their emotions overcame them.  Once they acknowledged and dealt with it, they could move forward with the  lives they were meant to live, together, and in love!
 Winter –  Jackie Ashenden
Bella and  Noah’s history holds no cherished memories for either of them. Bella has been  isolated from everyone who cared about her because she followed her mother’s  lead. Noah has also isolated himself, by choice, because of who and how his  father was. But they both seem to have no problem opening up to each other,  even though they really don’t want to. Letting go of old hurts and habits when  you are as stubborn as these two isn’t easy, but the peace it brings them  when they do, was wonderful!
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