Thursday, February 23, 2017

Blog Tour: Bookburners...Review!

Today I am so excited to tell you about this fun and fascinating book called, Bookburners!

I'll admit at almost 800 pages, it may look a little intimidating, but the more you learn about it and the concept behind it, the size of the book makes sense.  And you'll soon be flying through those pages...at least I did...because it's such an intriguing story. Kind of like Supernatural meets Criminal Minds...or at least, that's how it felt to me.


Anyway, here is a little about the book...


From Amazon:

The critically acclaimed urban fantasy about a secret team of agents that hunts down dangerous books containing deadly magic—previously released serially online by Serial Box, now available in print for the first time!

Magic is real, and hungry. It’s trapped in ancient texts and artifacts, and only a few who discover it survive to fight back. Detective Sal Brooks is a survivor. She joins a Vatican-backed black-ops anti-magic squad—Team Three of the Societas Librorum Occultorum—and together they stand between humanity and the magical apocalypse. Some call them the Bookburners. They don’t like the label.

Supernatural meets The Da Vinci Code in a fast-paced, kickass character driven novel chock-full of magic, mystery, and mayhem, written collaboratively by a team of some of the best writers working in fantasy.

To buy



--Max Gladstone:

MAX GLADSTONE has been thrown from a horse in Mongolia, drank almond milk with monks on Wudang Shan, and wrecked a bicycle in Angkor Wat. Max is also the author of the Craft Sequence of books about undead gods and skeletal law wizards—Full Fathom Five, Three Parts Dead, Two Serpents Rise, and Last First Snow. Max fools everyone by actually writing novels in the coffee shops of Davis Square in Somerville, MA. His dreams are much nicer than you’d expect. He tweets as @maxgladstone. Bookburners, which he wrote with Margaret Dunlap, Mur Lafferty, and Brian Francis Slattery, is available from Saga Press in January.

--Margaret Dunlap:

Before joining the Bookburners, MARGARET DUNLAP wrote for ABC Family’s cult-hit The Middleman in addition to working on SyFy’s Eureka. Most recently, she was a writer and co-executive producer of the Emmy-winning transmedia series The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, and co-created its sequel Welcome to Sanditon. Her short fiction has previously appeared in Shimmer Magazine. Margaret lives in Los Angeles where she taunts the rest of the team with local weather reports and waits for the earthquake that will finally turn Burbank into oceanfront property. She tweets as @spyscribe. Bookburners, which she wrote with Max Gladstone, Mur Lafferty, and Brian Francis Slattery, is available from Saga Press in January.

--Mur Lafferty:

MUR LAFFERTY is the author of The Shambling Guides series from Orbit, including the Netfix-optioned The Shambling Guide to New York City and Ghost Train to New Orleans. She has been a podcaster for over 10 years, running award-winning shows such as I Should Be Writing and novellas published via podcast. She has written for RPGs, video games, and short animation. She lives in Durham, NC where she attends Durham Bulls baseball games and regularly pets two dogs. Her family regrets her Dragon Age addiction and wishes for her to get help. She tweets as @mightymur. Bookburners, which she wrote with Max Gladstone, Margaret Dunlap, and Brian Francis Slattery, is available from Saga Press in January.

--Brian Francis Slattery:

BRIAN FRANCIS SLATTERY is the author of Spaceman Blues, Liberation, Lost Everything, and The Family Hightower. Lost Everything won the Philip K. Dick Award in 2012. He’s the arts and culture editor for the New Haven Independent, an editor for the New Haven Review, and a freelance editor for a few not-so-secret public policy think tanks. He also plays music constantly with a few different groups in a bunch of different genres. He has settled with his family just outside of New Haven and admits that elevation above sea level was one of the factors he took into account. For one week out of every year, he enjoys living completely without electricity. Bookburners, which he wrote with Max Gladstone, Margaret Dunlap, and Mur Lafferty, is available from Saga Press in January.



Title: Bookburners
Created by: Max Gladstone
Written by: Max Gladstone, Margaret Dunlap, Mur Lafferty, & Brian Francis Lafferty
Format: Print Book
Source: Irish Banana Blog Tour/Publisher 

Hmm...where to start with this review...

Well, I guess first I should tell you that Bookburners was originally published as individual stories, or rather episodes as they are called, on SerialBox, a website that allows users to subscribe to different book series and just like with TV, you get a new and different episode each week that is part of the series.  Now the episodes of Bookburners have been published all together for the first time in a print book.

And when I say it's like a TV series, I mean exactly that. Each entry in Bookburners, or episode as they are called in the book, follows the same core  group of characters as they hunt for books possessed by demons.  Every episode features a new and interesting case as well as adding to the overall story arc of the series...just like a TV Show.  And that's exactly how it felt, like I was watching a TV Show rather than reading a book.  So the size of the book may look a bit intimidating at first with 16 episodes and almost 800 pages, but reading Bookburners felt like binge-watching a season of a favorite TV show.  And just like my TV binges, I enjoyed every minute I spent reading this urban fantasy and couldn't wait to see what happened next.

Created by Max Gladstone and with entries from Margaret Dunlap, Mur Lafferty, Brian Francis Slattery, as well as Gladstone, Bookburners takes readers on a thrilling and fun ride as a group of demon hunters who secretly work for the Catholic Church hunt down books that contain demons.  Once a book is opened, the demon has the ability to take possession of a body and wreak havoc. It's the Bookburners' (a name given to them by their enemies) job to track down the book and destroy it before it can cause too much harm...but that can be very tricky and sometimes deadly.

The series gets off to a fascinating, action-packed start with the very first episode introducing readers to Sal, a police detective who had been living a pretty normal life until her brother Perry gets her caught up in this whole demon hunter business. I can't say a lot without spoiling things, but Sal's love for Perry leads her to start working with Team 3 from the Vatican hunting down demons and the books.

The Team consists of several characters from different walks of life with distinct personalities, traits, and strengths including Sal and other intriguing characters. Each has his or her own motivations for working on the team and with each episode we learn more about each of them and these motivations as well as getting to see the Team in action as they interact with demons and each other.  We also get to meet several other characters along the way and learn more about the various demons...and there a lot of different demons to be faced by our motley team of unlikely heroes. I don't want to say too
much because it could spoil it for new readers.

It was all quite enjoyable to read and I flew through the almost 800 pages with ease as I eagerly looked forward to what new challenge Sal and the Team would face with each episode and wondered about the main plot that each author managed to weave into each episode (Like I said, I really don't want to spoil things so I won't elaborate).

However, I have to admit that at first, I was worried that the series might feel a bit disjointed with different authors with different styles writing about the same characters and storyline, but that was soon forgotten as each author managed to not only bring these characters to life, but also write a pretty cohesive story.  From the first fast-paced entry from Gladstone to the very last (also by Gladstone) each episode offers a unique perspective on the story and characters while still continuing the overall story arc of Sal, her brother, and The Bookburners.  I could easily tell which author wrote each episode by their distinct voice, but it never affected the continuity of the overall story for me, which I was happy to see.

And just like with episodes of a TV show, some episodes in Bookburners, are stronger than others, however, overall they manage to provide a fun and thrilling adventure filled with twists and turns as each author adds to the story and its characters.  I was very pleased with Bookburners and its unique style of storytelling and I have to say that if it was an actual TV show, I'd definitely be watching.  For now, I am content to just read about Sal and the others.  The ending promises for more adventures with our crew...and I am happy to say that Season 2 is already on Serial Box!




*I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*

Does it sound like something you'd enjoy?

You can purchase Bookburners at the following:

And check out Serial Box for more about this series, as well as others.

And be sure to check out the other stops on the Tour for more info!



Happy Reading!!!!

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Who Will Be My Valentine?

Valentines Day is just around the corner and once again I find myself without a Valentine to share the day with...but who says I can't have a little fun and romance on February 14?!

I have decided to spend Valentines Day with my three loves...books, movies, and TV.

Here's where you come in... 
 I am a bit indecisive when it comes to picking my "dates" for the day (so many good choices) so I am going to let you pick for me. It will sort of be a series of a "blind dates" for me because I know very little about most of them other than what is in their "profiles"...or rather their blurbs/descriptions.

So let's get to the candidates... I am only giving you a short list of details about each...no title, author, actors...so it's a bit like a blind date for you, too, but I am sure you can figure out the titles.

My Book Date
(all are books I've never read and come from different genres of fiction)

My Movie Date
(all are movies I have never seen)



My TV Show Date
(will watch at least one episode...all are shows I've never watched) 



So there we have our candidates for my V-Day Dates...
VOTE HERE!



Create your own user feedback survey


Check back here on February 15 to see how my "blind" dates went. 

What are your plans for Valentines Day?

Friday, February 10, 2017

Blog Tour: #famous by Jilly Gagnon...Review & Giveaway!


#famous
by Jilly Gagnon
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: February 14th 2017
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
 photo addtogoodreadssmall_zpsa2a6cf28.png photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpg

Synopsis:

In this modern-day love story, Girl likes Boy, Girl takes photo of Boy and posts it online, Boy becomes accidentally insta-famous. And what starts out as an innocent joke spirals into a whirlwind adventure that could change both their lives—and their hearts—forever. But are fame and love worth the price?

Told in alternating points of view, #famous captures the out-of-control thrill ride of falling for someone in front of everyone.


Jilly Gagnon is currently based in Chicago, but is originally from Minnesota, a fact she'll likely inform you of within minutes of meeting you. Her humor writing, personal essays, and op-eds have appeared in Newsweek, Elle, Vanity Fair, Boston Magazine, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, The Toast, and The Hairpin, among others.

She writes both humor and young adult fiction. She's represented by Dawn Frederick of Red Sofa Literary (for humor) and Taylor Haggerty of Waxman Leavell (for young adult writing).

Find her on twitter, facebook, or instagram. She's an especially good conversation partner if you love amazing cocktails, terrible television, or talking to your cats.
Title: #famous
Author: Jilly Gagnon
Format: Digital ARC
Source: Blog Tour

I have been looking forward to reading #famous since I first learned about it and it was definitely worth the wait!  With such a relevant topic in today's cyber-focused world, #famous offers a fun and fascinating take on internet stardom.

As the synopsis says: Girl likes guy. Girls takes a pic of guy. Girl posts pic online. Guy becomes a viral sensation...or #famous.  Sounds familiar, right?  I remember this happening not long ago in real life and thinking about how life must have changed for the once anonymous guy and whoever took his picture.  Well, in the fictional #famous, Jilly Gagnon attempts to give us a glimpse of life for a viral sensation PLUS the person who caused all of the attention...and as one might predict, overnight fame is not always positive.

In the world of #famous, instead of Twitter, you have "Flit."  With a simple snap of the camera phone and the press of a send button, what should have been a simple flit between friends suddenly turns viral as people discover Rachel's picture of hot classmate Kyle online.

Soon, thousands of people online and in their school are talking about it.  Even the media gets involved!  Neither Kyle nor Rachel wanted or expected the fame, but now they must deal with it as it begins to affect their lives and relationships. They've both gone from unknowns to internet "stars"...well, Kyle has anyway.

Told in alternative POVs from both Kyle and Rachel, we are able to see just how this affects both of them in very different ways.  Things aren't always completely positive when it comes to internet stardom, as Gagnon demonstrates wonderfully in this book.  Kyle may be more popular now, but his new notoriety begins to interfere with his friendships and other aspects of his life as people seek his attention and start treating him differently...even in his own family.

Meanwhile, Rachel becomes the target of trolls and bullies both online and in real life.  It never fails to amaze me how cruel people can be to complete strangers despite the fact that I see it every day on Twitter, blogs, and Instagram.  Rachel not only has to deal with internet bullying, but also bullying from her peers and former friends.  She is such wonderful, relatable character and I just wanted to reach through the pages and hug her...to tell her she matters and to forget what anyone says!  Gagnon did a great job of making me care about this young woman whose unintentional notoriety opens up some old wounds.

As for Kyle, at times he seems a bit clueless...or maybe naive is a better word.  At first, he gets so caught up in his own newfound fame, that he doesn't seem to understand the impact this has had on Rachel.  But eventually he opens his eyes and despite the rollercoaster that their lives had become, Kyle and Rachel bond as a sweet, new friendship blossoms between the pair.

Overall, this was a fun and enlightening read. I enjoyed how Gagnon demonstrated how fame is not all you think it is and would recommend this book to teens who are eager to seek fame through social media.  There are so many mixed messages about it out there now, but #famous shows a bit of the behind the scenes reality.  Sure it looks great at first and there can be plus sides, but sometimes the negatives outweigh all the good as things turn out differently than expected.  Plus, people are always looking for the next big thing so fame can be fleeting.

This book will definitely have me thinking more about what I post online and just who could see it.  

Oh and one more thing...I am so glad social media wasn't a thing when I was in high school!  Being a teen is awkward enough without being afraid someone might take a photo of you at any time or misconstrue something you post.

*I received a free digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*





Reader Rising - Review 
YA Obsessed - Review 


Brittany's Book Rambles - Guest Post 


Wishful Endings - Interview
GenieReads - Review 
Reading to Unwind - Review 


Here's to Happy Endings - Guest Post 






GIVEAWAY!
Win 1 Signed Hardback of #Famous by Jilly Gagnon
(US/CAN only) 
a Rafflecopter giveaway




Sunday, January 15, 2017

Pardon the mess...

A little blog renovation in the works....so please excuse the mess as I work to make improvements to the blog.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Audiobook Blog Tour: The Egg and I by Betty MacDonald & Narrated by Heather Henderson...Review & Giveaway!


Today it's my turn to tell you about The Egg and I audiobook!
Keep reading to learn more, to read my review, and to enter the amazing giveaways!


About the Audiobook

Author: Betty MacDonald

Narrator: Heather Henderson

Length: 9 hours

Publisher: Post Hypnotic Press⎮2015

Genre: Humor, Memoir


When Betty MacDonald married a marine and moved to a small chicken farm on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State, she was largely unprepared for the rigors of life in the wild. With no running water, no electricity, a house in need of constant repair, and days that ran from four in the morning to nine at night, the MacDonalds had barely a moment to put their feet up and relax. And then came the children. Yet through every trial and pitfall – through chaos and catastrophe – this indomitable family somehow, mercifully, never lost its sense of humor. A beloved literary treasure for more than half a century, Betty MacDonald’s The Egg and I is a heartwarming and uproarious account of adventure and survival on the American frontier.

Buy on AudibleAmazon



  About the Author


Betty Bard MacDonald (1907–1958), the best-selling author of The Egg and I and the classic Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle children’s books, burst onto the literary scene shortly after the end of World War II. Readers embraced her memoir of her years as a young bride operating a chicken ranch on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, andThe Egg and I sold its first million copies in less than a year. The public was drawn to MacDonald’s vivacity, her offbeat humor, and her irreverent take on life. In 1947, the book was made into a movie starring Fred MacMurray and Claudette Colbert, and spawned a series of films featuring MacDonald’s Ma and Pa Kettle characters.

MacDonald followed up the success of The Egg and I with the creation of Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle, a magical woman who cures children of their bad habits, and with three additional memoirs: The Plague and I (chronicling her time in a tuberculosis sanitarium just outside Seattle), Anybody Can Do Anything (recounting her madcap attempts to find work during the Great Depression), and Onions in the Stew (about her life raising two teenage daughters on Vashon Island).

Author Paula Becker was granted full access to Betty MacDonald’s archives, including materials never before seen by any researcher. Looking for Betty MacDonald, the first official biography of this endearing Northwest storyteller, reveals the story behind the memoirs and the difference between the real Betty MacDonald and her literary persona.

Post Hypnotic Press
WebsiteTwitterFacebookYoutubeLinkedInSoundcloudPinterest



About the Narrator


Heather Henderson is a voice actress and audiobook narrator with a 20-year career in literary and performing arts. Her narrations include the NYT bestseller (now also a feature film) Brain on Fire; and Sharon Creech’s The Boy on the Porch, which won her an Earphones award and was named one of the Best Children’s Audiobooks for 2013 by Audiofile Magazine. She earned her Doctor of Fine Arts degree at the Yale School of Drama, and is co-curator of AudioEloquence.com, a pronunciation research site for the audiobook industry. In 2015, Heather was a finalist for a Voice Arts Award (Outstanding Narration, Audiobook Classics), for her narration of Betty MacDonald’s The Egg and I.
WebsiteYoutubeLinkedIn



egg-graphic-1

My Review


Title: The Egg and I
Author:  Betty MacDonald
Narrator:  Heather Henderson
Format: Audiobook
Running Time: 9hrs
Source:  Audiobookworm Promotions Blog Tour

I remember seeing the film adaptation of The Egg and I as a kid and I can't remember a time when Ma and Pa Kettle, two of its most famous characters were not a part of my life as they have always been favorites of my father, thus favorites of mine.  However, I had never had the opportunity to read the book that inspired the film and its characters and am so glad I took the time to listen to the audiobook version.

Written in the 1940s and based on author Betty MacDonald's real life, The Egg and I is filled with the author's experiences and observations from when she and her husband moved to a chicken farm in rural Washington state. Life wasn't always easy for Betty and her family, but they persevered. As the synopsis suggests, Betty seemed to keep her sense of humor about most things based on the wit and humor she uses in telling her stories. The little anecdotes shared about her life on the chicken ranch are quite humorous and colorful as are the characters (including the animals) our author introduces us to along the way.

However, although appropriate to the time period, there are a few problematic observations or descriptions used when it comes to some of her Native American and rural neighbors that might bother some who read or hear them.  But keep in mind the author's experiences (or lack of) and time period when this book was written.

As for Heather Henderson's narration, it was absolutely perfect and I am so glad I listened to the audiobook version of this book despite its length (9hrs). Somehow hearing the story told to me rather than reading it myself, made everything better and funnier. It was as if the author herself was telling me what had happened. Through both the author's words and the way the narrator delivered them, I could easily picture someone from the city trying to adjust to an isolated life filled with chickens, outhouses, and plenty of other things she never thought she'd have to deal with when she got married and started a family.

This classic book was narrated beautifully with plenty of humor and fun.  I enjoyed hearing about the author's experiences as she adjusted to life on a chicken ranch.

My Rating: 4 Stars

*I received a free copy of this audiobook in exchange for an honest review.*



Giveaways


Grand Prize


First Runner Up

The Egg and I Runner Up

Second Runner Up

The Egg and I 2nd Runner Up

Third Runner Up



Make sure you check out the other stops on the Tour!
Click here to find the full schedule!


Audiobookworm Promotions

Friday, November 18, 2016

Blog Tour: Forget Me Always by Sara Wolf...with Giveaway!


Today I am going to tell you about this great book by author Sara Wolf!
It's a sequel to Love Me Never (which I also enjoyed)!
Keep reading for more info and the giveaway!
And please be sure to check back later today for my reviews of both of these books!

About the Book


Forget Me Always (Lovely Vicious #2) by Sara Wolf
Publication Date: November 1, 2016
Publisher: Entangled Teen

It’s been three years, twenty-five weeks, and five days since Isis Blake fell in love, and if she has it her way, it’ll stretch into infinity. Since then, she’s punched Jack Hunter—
her nemesis-turned-maybe-something-more—in the face, survived a brutal attack by her mom’s abusive ex thanks to Jack’s heroics, and then promptly forgotten all about him.

The one bright spot for Isis is Sophia, the ephemeral girl who shares Isis’s hospital stay as well as a murky past with Jack. But as Isis’s memories return, she finds it harder and
harder to resist what she felt for Jack, and Jack finds it impossible to stay away from the only girl who’s ever melted the ice around his heart.

As the dark secrets surrounding Sophia emerge, Isis realizes Jack isn’t who she thought he was. He’s dangerous. But when Isis starts receiving terrifying emails from an
anonymous source, that danger might be the only thing protecting her from something far more threatening.

Her past.



Other Books in the Series




Book Title: Love Me Never (Lovely Vicious, #1)
Author: Sara Wolf
Release Date: Apr. 5, 2016
Genre: YA Contemporary Romance / Dark Comedy

Previously published as Lovely Vicious, this fully revised and updated edition is full of romance, intrigue, and laugh-out-loud moments.

Don’t love your enemy. Declare war on him.

Seventeen-year-old Isis Blake hasn’t fallen in love in three years, nine weeks, and five days, and after what happened last time, she intends to keep it that way. Since then she’s lost eighty-five pounds, gotten four streaks of purple in her hair, and moved to Buttcrack-of-Nowhere, Ohio, to help her mom escape a bad relationship.

All the girls in her new school want one thing—Jack Hunter, the Ice Prince of East Summit High. Hot as an Armani ad, smart enough to get into Yale, and colder than the Arctic, Jack Hunter’s never gone out with anyone. Sure, people have seen him downtown with beautiful women, but he’s never given high school girls the time of day. Until Isis punches him in the face.

Jack’s met his match. Suddenly everything is a game.

The goal: Make the other beg for mercy.
The game board: East Summit High.
The reward: Something neither of them expected.


About the Author 



Sara Wolf is a twenty-something author who adores baking, screaming at her cats, and screaming at herself while she types hilarious things. When she was a kid, she was too busy eating dirt to write her first terrible book. Twenty years later, she picked up a keyboard and started mashing her fists on it and created the monster known as the Lovely Vicious series. She lives in San Diego with two cats, a crippling-yet-refreshing sense of self-doubt, and not enough fruit tarts ever. 




Giveaway!

One (1) winner will receive an audiobook copy of Love Me Never By Sara Wolf,



Be sure to check out the other stops on the blog Tour...the schedule can be found here!

And remember to check back later for my reviews of these great books!


Chapter by Chapter

Book Blitz: More Than Friends By Monica Murphy...Excerpt and Giveaway!

more than friends monica murphy


About the Book



more than friendsMore than Friends by Monica Murphy
Release Date: November 14th, 2016
Genre: Young Adult Romance
Cover Designer: Hang Le
Add to Goodreads
Buy: iBooks

He’s not perfect, but he’s all I want…

I’m your average girl at your average high school, trying to figure out my place in life. After catching my now ex-boyfriend messing around with my now ex-best friend, I’ve made some big changes. No more band, no more backstabbing friends and no more boring old life. Now I have new friends, a new job and new interests.

 But there’s a certain someone who’s interested in me, and I don’t get it. Jordan Tuttle could have anyone he wants. He’s the most popular boy in school. Rich, gorgeous, smart and the star quarterback, he’s perfect. Yet he acts like he wants no one else but…me.

 So despite my fears and doubt, I let him get close. Probably too close. I discover that he’s not so perfect after all, but it doesn’t matter. I’m falling for him, even though he runs so hot and cold. I know someday he’s going to break my heart.

And I’m going to let him


AN (1)



About the Author


Monica Murphy is the New York Times, USA Today and #1 international bestselling author of the One Week Girlfriend series, the Billionaire Bachelors and The Rules series. Her books have been translated in almost a dozen languages and has sold over one million copies worldwide. She is both self-published and published by Random House/Bantam and Harper Collins/Avon. She writes new adult, young adult and contemporary romance. She is a wife and a mother of three who lives in central California on fourteen acres in the middle of nowhere along with their one dog and too many cats. A self-confessed workaholic, when she’s not writing, she’s reading or hanging out with her husband and kids. She’s a firm believer in happy endings, though she will admit to putting her characters through angst-filled moments before they finally get that hard won HEA.


 Connect with Monica: 



Excerpt


MoreThanFriends-Teaser1


Read below for an excerpt from More than Friends:

More than Friends ~ Monica Murphy
Chapter 1 reveal
Chapter One
Amanda  
I’m cruising on my bike, contemplating everything Livvy just told me. How her mom was so mad when she discovered Livvy had spent the night at Ryan’s house, she's grounded her and took away her phone. Livvy is seriously going to lose her mind being grounded for so long, unable to see Ryan unless we’re at school. That won’t be enough for her. When it comes to Ryan, it feels like nothing is ever enough for her.
At least I’m not in trouble like she is. 
Liv’s going to stress out over Ryan, though. Over those hours when she’s not with him and he could possibly be up to no good. She worries about him all the time. I get it—sort of. He seems to play games, and that must get exhausting.    
Truthfully, I wouldn’t put up with that crap. But I’m not Livvy. 
Thank goodness.  
The wind blows through my hair as I make a right into my neighborhood, turning the wild strands into a tangled mess. Not that I care. There’s no one I’m hoping to impress. It’ll just be Sunday night dinner with the family, as usual. I’m not even sure if they’re home yet. Dad mentioned something about going to Home Depot to pick out fall flowers for the yard, and Mom said something about shower curtains and Bed, Bath & Beyond.    
Bleh. I’m glad I made my escape when I did.  
My house slowly comes into view and I smile to myself. I might not live in a giant mansion in a fancy neighborhood like my new so-called friends, but our house is nice. Small and on the older side, but it’s cute, with a pretty front yard and a big porch with a white swing… 
Oh. Crap. There’s someone sitting on the swing. His arms are spread out along the back of the wooden frame, his gaze locked directly on me, like he knew I was going to appear at any second.  
It’s Jordan Tuttle.   
My heart is racing as I press gently on the brakes, taking him in, my gaze roving over every single tiny feature that makes him Jordan. I want to slow down the moment, revel in the anticipation of finding him waiting for me. He rises to his feet, runs a hand over his thick, perfect hair almost nervously, and a shuddery breath leaves me.     
 
The memory hits me, socks me in the stomach and leaves me aching. I remember what it felt like, having those hands on me just last night. His mouth on mine, the words he whispered in my ear. It wasn’t a dream. It wasn’t something I made up inside my head, because seriously, I was starting to wonder if I really was losing my mind when it came to Jordan Tuttle.  
But no. Jordan is real. He’s in my life because he wants to be here for some crazy reason.   
And now he’s waiting for me, his hands on his hips, the faintest smile on his face as he continues to watch me.  
“What are you doing here?” I ask as I make my approach, hopping off my bike so I can roll it up the front walkway.    
We meet in the middle, Jordan stopping just in front of me. “Nice way to greet me.”   
I frown, worried I was doing everything wrong. He had a way of making me feel like that. “How should I greet you?”  
“Like this.” His hand is suddenly curled around my nape when he pulls me in for a too-quick yet somehow lingering kiss. My lips tingle when he pulls away, and by the smug expression on his face, I know he knows the effect he has on me.  
“Jordan,” I chastise, stepping away from him and nearly tripping over my stupid bike. Luckily enough, he catches me by the elbow, steadying me before I fall over like an idiot. “What if my parents are inside?” 
“They’re not.” He grabs the bike from me, nudges the kickstand down and sets it in place on the sidewalk a few feet away from us. “Where’ve you been?”  
His confidence makes me crazy. He’s so sure of himself, and I wish I had even an ounce of his self-assuredness. 
I don’t. Not even close. He lives in another realm. I’m just a lowly peon compared to His Majesty, Lord Jordan Tuttle. 
“I went over to Livvy’s,” I tell him when I realize he’s waiting for my answer. As usual, my mind wanders when I’m in his presence. “I wanted to make sure she’s okay.”  
Jordan frowns. “She is, right?”  
“Oh yeah, her mom just grounded her for life.” When he sends me a come on face, I 
readjust. “Fine, she’s grounded for a couple weeks. No phone. No Ryan.” 
“It might do her some good, the no Ryan thing,” he mutters. 
I say nothing. I don’t understand the relationship he has with Ryan. They’re friends. Then they’re not. They’re teammates always, and that’s something Jordan has to deal with no matter what.  
“What are you up to right now?” I ask, hoping to change the subject. 
He smiles. Reaches out to tuck a wayward strand of hair behind my ear. I feel that innocent touch all the way down to my toes, which are currently curling in my battered 
white Converse. “I want to take you out.” 
My mouth drops open. “In public?”  
The frown is back. It’s not fair, how attractive he still is despite the scowl he’s currently wearing. “Of course in public. What the hell, Mandy.”  
I shrug, my cheeks burning with embarrassment. “We haven’t actually been seen together.” 
He grabs my hand and pulls me in close. My body immediately goes hot and I wonder if he has some sort of powerful force field I can’t resist. “I want to change that.” 
My gaze meets his and I can’t look away. He’s so sincere. So serious. “What happened between us last night was…”  
“Real.” He kisses me again. Another brief brush of lips on lips, yet I’m decimated. Shaky all over when he pulls away. When my ex Thad kissed me, I never felt like this. Ever. 
Never. 
Ever. 
Never.  
“Maybe we were just caught up in a moment?” I ask tentatively. It’s like I’m always waiting for the bomb to drop. For the joke to be on me. No one in a million years would ever match me with Jordan Tuttle. Not even me. So what’s his deal? Why is he so persistent? I don’t get it. 
I like it, but he also scares me. I don’t want to get hurt. 
I don’t want my heart to be broken.  
“Every time I’m near you, I get caught up in a moment.” One side of his perfect mouth tips up in this semi-smile that is absolutely adorable. I wish I had my phone out so I could snap a pic of him. “Maybe we need to give this a try and see if all we ever experience together is one giant moment.”   
“That’s impossible.” The words are out before I can stop them and I slap my hand over my mouth, my eyes wide as I stare up at him. 
Jordan actually laughs, shaking his head. It’s a rare sound, but wow, is it amazing. “Nothing’s impossible if you want it bad enough.”  
I drop my hand, gaping up at him. “So are you saying that you want—me?”  
“Yes.” He dips his head, his mouth hovering above mine. “I do.” 

The Giveaway


  MMurphy-MTFGiveaway_UPDATED
 Signed paperback of More than Friends, open to US residents only