#ReleaseBlitz “Sins Duet” by Abbi Cook

The Sins Duet by Abbi Cook

Releases 24th September

Genre: Dark romance/romantic suspense

AVAILABLE NOW!

Buy Today: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08FRMLQBG

Add to your TBR: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/54913469-the-sins-duet

#TheSinsDuet #AbbiCook #BareNakedWords #DarkRomance #RomanticSuspense

“The Sins Duet is 2 books Covet and Corrupt. This story in its entirety is so different to anything I have read for a while, and I loved it” Goodreads Reviewer

“Outstanding build up to a tear your soul apart read!” Goodreads Reviewer

Blurb

A dangerous man obsessed…

I want to possess Natalie from the moment I lay eyes on her. Trusting and sweet, she has no idea what I can do to her.

What I will do to her.

An innocent woman caught in a web of lies…

He’s beautiful and vicious like nothing I’ve ever seen. Alexei terrifies me and takes my breath away.

Yet I’m drawn to him like a moth to a flame, even as I sense the danger in him.

Nothing is what it seems…

A hit man who never fails at his job. A woman afraid she’s losing her mind. The secret that shocks even a cold-blooded killer.

How perfect a life can look from the outside, and then with just one crack in the façade, everything changes.

Abbi’s social media links are:

https://www.facebook.com/abbicookauthor

http://abbicook.com

https://www.instagram.com/abbicookauthor

#ReleaseBlitz “Sleeping with Shadows” by Rachel Hailey

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Dark Paranormal Romance

Date Published: 9/22/20

Publisher: FyreSyde Publishing

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 Once The King of Nightmares, Ashe lost everything when he was betrayed.
Released from prison, he’s got one goal: Stay Free. To make that happen
he’ll have to rescue the girl who stole his crown while saving the court
he’d rather see burn. But he can’t do it alone. He needs Callie.

Abused, neglected, and finally shunned by The Court of Light, Callie is
done with court politics. It’s just too damned bad Ashe doesn’t care. He’s
arrogant, manipulative, and dangerous. Everything she’s been taught to fear.
It would be so easy to hate him, but the sadness in his gaze calls to her
heart, and his touch awakens her own darkness. She has never wanted anyone
more.

Callie is Ashe’s darkest desire, but to earn his freedom and prevent the
destruction of humanity, she must embrace the destiny that will keep them
apart. But is the safety of the world worth losing the kind of love he’s
only dreamed of?

Buy Links

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About the Author

Rachel Hailey was born and raised in the South. She’s all about that nerd life and in between writing she’s dedicated herself to raising the next generation of nerds.If she’s not online or staring at a book she can usually be found at the local game store rolling dice, shuffling cards, or planning her next cosplay. 

Her childhood was most prominently shaped by the works of R.L. Stine,
Stephen King, Anne Rice and the Brothers Grimm. 

 

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#ReleaseBlitz “Young, Broke and Educated” by Alexander Baima

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Finance/Economics

Date Published: September 22

Publisher: Acorn Publishing

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Alexander Baima graduated college with $80,000 in student debt at the age
of 23 from one of the top 25 business schools in America. After college he
went to work as a financial planner and serviced fortune 500 clients. He
created the financial plans that brokers took credit for, and while they
grossed millions a year, he made minimum wage.

At 29, his parents had a house with an $80,000 mortgage and a child –
and they lived on one income. At 29, Alexander still had over $50,000 in
student debt. How could previous generations have so much more than most
millennials who still struggle with little hope for the future?

Young, Broke and Educated investigates the decline of purchasing power
among young people, especially over the last generation. It explores in
basic, easy to understand terms, how economic systems have evolved to hinder
the financial success of millennials and the incentives that government, big
business and banks have to prevent progressive change.

Alexander Baima, a master in the field of eCommerce and early adopter of
blockchain technology, walks you through, step-by-step, what the issues are
and what needs to change to ensure that millennials and future generations
have access to the same type of success that previous generations took for
granted.

AMAZON

BARNES & NOBLE

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 About the Author

Alexander Baima received his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of San Diego. By profession, he has excelled as both an analyst and project manager. He currently holds a CAPM, MOS and SSGB certification in the field of project management. Alex is a talented entrepreneur who specializes in 19th and 20th century porcelain as well as modern innovative computing.

Alex is a firm supporter of Cryptocurrency and believes that this
technology will revolutionize the way all countries function within a matter
of a few years. He is currently invested in Bitcoin, Ethereum and EOS with
the expectations that decentralized applications and smart contracts will be
a major contributor to our future.

He has published over 150 articles between LinkedIn and a new social media
platform called Steemit. As a millennial, his desire is to help solve many
of the great challenges that are plaguing today’s society and engage
in intellectual exchanges to help create a better world.

 

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#ReleaseBlitz “Edge of Tomorrow (Arrow’s Edge MC, #3)” by Freya Barker

Title:Edge Of Tomorrow (Arrow’s Edge MC, #3) Author: Freya Barker Genre: Romantic Suspense Release Date: September 21, 2020 Photographer: KW Photography Models: Darrin Dedmond & Baby John Hosted by: Buoni Amici Press, LLC.

Solitude and motor oil meets soul food and wariness

I’m a grease-stained enigma. A watcher, a protector, an ex-con, and a mechanic. My name is Brick. I’m old enough to know good things come to those who wait, and hungry enough to go after what I want. I am a proud independent.

A nurturer, a cook, a casualty, and a grandparent. My name is Lisa. I’m cautious enough to keep my distance, and too wise to let a chance at love pass me by. We seem unmatched—in race, in history, in lifestyle—but when tragedy leaves a baby in our care and a target on our backs, we discover the strength of family.

Unified.

Available in Kindle Unlimited

AMAZON

Tweet: The Latest Book In the Arrows Edge MC Edge of Tomorrow By @Freya_Barker is #Live @Amazon #KU https://ctt.ec/2dpbd+ #BAPpr #KindleUnlimited #MCRomance

USA Today bestselling author Freya Barker loves writing about ordinary people with extraordinary stories.
Driven to make her books about ‘real’ people; she creates characters who are perhaps less than perfect, each struggling to find their own slice of happy, but just as deserving of romance, thrills and chills in their lives.
Recipient of the ReadFREE.ly 2019 Best Book We’ve Read All Year Award for “Covering Ollie, the 2015 RomCon “Reader’s Choice” Award for Best First Book, “Slim To None”, and Finalist for the 2017 Kindle Book Award with “From Dust”, Freya continues to add to her rapidly growing collection of published novels as she spins story after story with an endless supply of bruised and dented characters, vying for attention!

Available in Kindle Unlimited

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#ReleaseBlitz “Hell & Back (Outbreak Task Force Book 5)” by Julie Rowe

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Hell & Back

Outbreak Task Force, Book #5

Romantic Suspense

Date Published: 9/21/2020

Publisher: Entangled Publishing

 

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 Racing to lock down the CDC’s deadly virus samples from terrorists, ex-Special Forces medic Henry Lee partners with Ruby Toth on the Outbreak Task Force. But the terrorists always seem one step ahead. As they work side by side, Henry’s taken with how Ruby accepts and respects him, instead of pitying him for all he lost overseas, including his leg. Ruby’s hiding something, though, and Henry fears she’s been leaking sensitive information. Terrorists have kidnapped her brother, and now microbiologist Ruby Toth faces a horrible choice. If she doesn’t give them a vial of Small Pox as ransom, her brother will die. She knows her prickly—yet very hot—boss, Henry, could provide the help she needs. But she joined the CDC to root out insiders plotting to unleash a bio-engineered pandemic, and she can’t trust anyone. Not even Henry.

Purchase Links 

Amazon 

B&N 

Kobo 

iBooks

 

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EXCERPT

About time he called her. Where the hell was he?

She answered the phone with, “Where have you been?”

“Your brother is with us, Miss Toth,” a distorted voice said. “If you don’t do everything we tell you to do, you’ll never see him in one piece again.”

A cold fist punched her in the stomach, and she was standing without recalling how she got there. The cold pushed its way through her body, weakening her knees until she collapsed back onto the chair she’d been sitting on.

“Who is this?”

“You know who we are.” The distortion made it impossible to discern if the voice was male or female. “Your brother is healthy. For the moment.”

Assholes. Anger freed her diaphragm from its icy cage. She harnessed the energy and rode it, breaking it down into something useful. Patience.

Watch, wait, listen, then act. She’d learned the hard way not to let her emotions hijack her mouth. To get along with difficult people, you had to figure out what they wanted and what they didn’t before you spoke.

What kind of response would a bunch of terrorists who’d kidnapped her brother want from her? Defeat, not defiance. Compliance, not confidence. She needed to make them believe she’d do whatever they told her to do.

“Please don’t hurt him. Wh-what do you want?” There was enough adrenaline surging through her system it wasn’t hard to stutter and breathe a little too hard. To sound like she was on the edge of panic.

“A live sample of smallpox.” Despite the distortion, the voice sounded self-satisfied. Arrogant. Superior. For a moment, she couldn’t quite believe what she heard.

“You can’t be serious.”

“Get it or your brother dies.”

“How do I know he’s not already dead?” Her voice broke on the last word.

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 About the Author

Full-time author and workshop facilitator, Julie Rowe’s first career as a medical lab technologist in Canada took her to the North West Territories and Fort McMurray, Alberta, where she still resides. Her most recent titles include Search & Destroy book #4 of the Outbreak Taskforce series and Trapped with the Secret Agent book #1 of the Trapped with Him series. Julie’s articles have appeared in magazines, such as Romantic Times Magazine, Today’s Parent magazine and Canadian Living. Julie facilitates communication workshops at Keyano College in Fort McMurray, and has presented writing workshops at conferences in the United States and Canada. You can find her at http://www.julieroweauthor.com , on Twitter @julieroweauthor or at her Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/JulieRoweAuthor.

Contact Links

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#ReleaseBlitz “Forever Logan” by Elena Matthews

 

Forever Logan by Elena Matthews

(A standalone novel: Once Upon a Player Book 2)

Genre: Contemporary Romance

A few things to know about Forever Logan

➜ Contemporary romance

➜ Enemies to lovers

➜ Hot cop

AVAILABLE NOW!

Grab your copy here https://books2read.com/ForeverLogan

Add to your Goodreads https://bit.ly/34GleMx

 

Other books in the Once Upon a Player series ➜

Forever Nate (Book 1):

Grab for only $0.99 (for a limited time)https://books2read.com/ForeverNate

 

Synopsis

Once upon a time…

A sister told her brothers, “Eventually, a girl is going to come along and flip your worlds upside down.”

She was right…

…and Logan was the second to fall.

From the instant Logan locked eyes on Ally, he knew she was the one.

Usually, women flock to him, but the one woman whose attention he wants hates his guts.

Lucky for Logan, his twin brother is getting married to Ally’s best friend, and as the best man, Logan is determined to make good use of planning the wedding to his advantage…especially with Ally being the maid of honor.

It’s tough, trying to make her fall in love with him when all they do is argue, but slowly, Logan begins to show Ally his worth.

Eventually, things between them begin to heat up…and the lust quickly accelerates into something deeper.

But will Logan always need to prove himself to Ally because of his past, or will he ruin everything with one stupid bet?

Other books in the Once Upon a Player series ➜

Forever Nate (Book 1):

Grab for only $0.99 (for a limited time)https://books2read.com/ForeverNate

Meet the Author

Receptionist by day, author by night, Elena Matthews is from Manchester, United Kingdom, the home of Manchester United, MediaCity, and of course, Coronation Street. When Elena isn’t writing, she can be found with her nose in a book or watching guilty pleasures, such as Grey’s Anatomy. And, when she isn’t doing those things, you can often find her on Facebook, or obsessing over Kellan Kyle, book-boyfriend extraordinaire.

Social media links –

Newsletter (You can grab a free ebook by signing up)https://bit.ly/2Y6ZxQl

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/AuthorElenaMatthews

Facebook grouphttps://www.facebook.com/groups/elenamatthewsreadergroup

Instagramhttps://www.instagram.com/authorelenamatthews/

Bookbubhttps://www.bookbub.com/authors/elena-matthews

Goodreadshttps://bit.ly/2qhLPh4

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/AuthorElenaMatt

Websitehttps://www.authorelenamatthews.com

 

#ReleaseBlitz “Conversations with the Past” by Aura Imbarus, Ph.D


  How to Let Go of the Past, Redefine Your Present, and Create a Positive Future

Non Fiction / Self-help

Date Published: Sept 17

Publisher: Rainbow Ridge

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There are no accidents in this life—and the more aware we become, the more we’re able discover the patterns that challenge, elevate, and enlighten us. In “Conversations with the Past,” Dr. Aura Imbarus delves into many of the profound experiences she’s had over the years—from emotional breakdowns to spiritually elevated states—in order to help people discover and understand their own purpose in life. Through this exploration, we will all be inspired to examine our own lives and take the necessary steps to enhance our happiness and well-being.

Emotional, physical, and spiritual experiences are all part of the intricate, interwoven tapestry of existence. And though it may sometimes feel like finding our life’s purpose is difficult and elusive, Dr. Imbarus demonstrates how it can, and will, be revealed to the curious mind and willing hear.


 

 About the Author

Dr. Aura Imbarus is an awarded educator, freelance journalist, motivational speaker, and author of the critically acclaimed Amazon best-seller and Pulitzer Prize entry, Out of the Transylvania Night: A Story of Tyranny, Freedom, Love and Identity (Bettie Youngs Books, 2010), a memoir detailing her life in Romania during the Communist regime and an upcoming self-help book, Conversations with the Past: A Journey Home (Rainbow Ridge Books, August 2020).

She is also the President and Founder of See Beyond Media, a company focusing on adolescents’ challenges in the 21st century, having as its launching platform See Beyond Magazine (www.seebeyondmag.com).  See Beyond Media also offers life coaching and author coaching (www.seebeyondmedia.com).

Dr. Imbarus has a BA in Foreign Languages; MA in American and British Studies and a PhD in World Humanities. Since 1998, she has been teaching high school and college level classes in So. Cal. Dr. Imbarus is a licensed hypnotherapist, having trained with Dr. Brian Weiss and Dr. Wanita Holmes.

She was featured on NBC, ABC, CNBC, Good Morning San Diego, Forbes Romania, etc.

In 2019, she received President’s Volunteer Service Award signed by President Donald Trump.

Aura Imbarus is the President and Co-Founder of RAPN – Romanian American Professional Network and one of the founding members of RACC – Romanian-American Chamber of Commerce, Los Angeles Chapter. She sits on the Advisory Council of CA Ballet, is a member of Royal Society of St. George, SACC – Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce. She was a mentor for Scott L. Schwartz Children’s Foundation, a non-profit and professional organization whose mission is to help children with disabilities, and she sat on the Board of Wesley Foundation UCLA and Blue Heron Foundation.

She writes for Palos Verdes Pulse, The Global Woman Magazine (London); Elephant Journal, Beverly Hills Times Magazine, The Immigrant, Hermannstader Zeitung in Transylvania and also works as a freelance journalist for Entertainment and Sports Today.

In her free time she likes to go dancing, hiking, skiing, yoga, gym, sailing; she loves traveling.

Contact Links

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#ReleaseBlitz “Hollywood Player” Alexa Aston

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Hollywood Name Game, Book 3

Contemporary Romance

Date Published: September 17, 2020

 

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She has zero friends . . . and is wary of men, living life as a recluse.

His only friend is 90 and when she dies, he’s adrift.

Can a dyslexic actor and a shy loner find happiness together?

Famous from the time she was fourteen, London Russell lands the cover of Sports Illustrated to cap off her modeling career. Leaving the fashion world behind, she follows her dream of becoming a singer-songwriter. Thanks to an ex-boyfriend’s vicious attack on her, London becomes a recluse who turns out hits but never tours—and can’t trust a man. Her life changes course when she encounters a Hollywood screenwriter and director and agrees to write the theme song for their next movie.

Knox Monroe grew up as America’s darling, a child actor featured on several popular television series. After his mother’s betrayal, Knox drops out of sight, returning years later to make the successful transition to adult roles. A known womanizer and loner, Knox meets London by chance. Through her connections, he winds up with the lead role in a new movie.

Will London be able to open her heart and move past Knox’s player reputation? And will Knox knock down the emotional fortress that he’s built around his heart?

In Hollywood, anything’s possible. . .

Hollywood Player is the third book in the Hollywood Name Game series. Each book in the series is a standalone story that can be enjoyed out of order.

Purchase Link

Amazon

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Other Books in the Hollywood Name Games Series:

Hollywood Heartbreaker

Hollywood Name Game, Book 1

Release Date: August 6, 2020

From internationally bestselling romance author Alexa Aston comes a stunning new Contemporary Romance series. Book One in the exciting Hollywood Name Game series has arrived. Read for FREE with Kindle Unlimited!

Being late to an interview lands her the biggest job opportunity of her life.

He may be rich and successful—but he’s just this side of miserable.

Can a wannabe be The One for the biggest star in Hollywood?

Cassie Carroll came to Hollywood with big dreams that never materialized. Acting isn’t even on the back burner anymore—it’s completely off the stove. Working for a third-rate agent, Cassie hopes to land a new job that will give her credibility, as well as help pay the rent. Late to her interview, she swerves to avoid hitting a dog—and totals the car of Hollywood’s leading action superstar. Surprisingly, she walks away from their encounter with a job—as the sexiest man alive’s personal assistant.

Rhett Corrigan is bored with the movies he makes and the drop-dead gorgeous model he’s dating. He’s afraid that Hollywood has typecast him—and that he’ll never be able to break out of his action mold and try new acting challenges. When Cassie Carroll literally slams into his life, she brings a breath of fresh air and common sense to his world. She pushes him to be a better actor and a better man

Can these friends become lovers—and can their love survive—in a tabloid-happy town that thrives on rumors and backstabbing?

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Hollywood Flirt

Hollywood Name Game, Book 2

Release Date: August 27, 2020

From internationally bestselling romance author Alexa Aston – Book Two in the exciting Hollywood Name Game – a stunning new contemporary romance series. Read for FREE with Kindle Unlimited!

She’s Hollywood royalty whose trail vanished a dozen years ago.

He doesn’t do relationships and thinks commitment is a four-letter word.

They Google each other . . . and sparks fly . . .

Sydney Revere, the daughter of a famous movie couple, left Hollywood behind over a decade ago. Christened The Wild Child by the media, she reinvents herself as a serious student who becomes an attorney and marries a safe, predictable man. When her husband cheats on her and the law loses its glitter, Sydney returns to Hollywood. Her father hires her to storyboard his upcoming movie, No Regrets—and then stuns Sydney when he offers her the job as his assistant director.

Dash DeLauria is a rising actor who hasn’t trusted a woman since his mother left. He’s now the guardian of his mentally-challenged brother. Dash is looking to grow professionally and after he wins the lead in No Regrets, he finds he’s lost his heart and soul to Sydney. With both their careers on the upswing, life is sweet.

But Sydney’s ex-husband isn’t finished with her yet. Discovering who she really is—and that she’s wealthy—he tracks her to California, ready to start over with her again.

No matter what it takes . . .

Hollywood Flirt is the second book in the Hollywood Name Game series. Each book in the series is a standalone story that can be enjoyed out of order.

Read FREE With Kindle Unlimited

~

Coming Soon:

Book 4 – Hollywood Double

Book 5 – Hollywood Enigma

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Excerpt

“Bunker!”

London looked up and saw a dog bounding her way. Before she could react, the golden flash crashed into her table, spilling her glass of tea everywhere. She opened her mouth to speak and the dog jammed his nose into her crotch. Mortified, London tried to push it away. 

“Bunker!” she heard a second time. Looking up, London saw Seth Walker dashing toward her, a leash with a dangling collar in one hand. No, not Seth Walker. The actor who played Seth Walker in her favorite movie franchise.

The one whose name escaped her as he arrived at her table.

His cobalt blue eyes looked even bluer against his tanned face and sun-kissed blond hair. If Adonis had come to life, he would be this man.

“I’m going to kill you,” the actor growled, frowning at the dog. “I mean it.”

The golden retriever buried his nose against her leg.

London burst out laughing.

“I apologize for my dog’s lack of manners.” He reach to latch onto the dog but Bunker was having none of it. He wriggled even closer to London, mashing her skirt against her. The man’s hands froze. She knew he hesitated because it might be hard to get a decent grip on the dog without invading London’s very personal space.

“I give up,” he said in frustration. “Do you think you could help me out?”

“It’s my favorite thing in life to help a man in need.”

Wait . . . was she flirting? She never flirted. Ever. Ever. Ever.

He smiled then, exposing even, white teeth against his tan. Amusement lit his eyes.

“Hand it over.” She reached out and he surrendered the collar, still attached to the leash.

She pried the dog’s nose away from her and looped an arm about him as she slid the collar over his head and lowered it to where it sat loosely around his neck.

Bunker’s owner knelt and tightened the collar. “I won’t fall for that look again,” he told the dog.

“What look is that?” she asked.

He grinned. “The pathetic one that tells me his collar is too tight. The one that got me to loosen it up, which was all the invitation he needed to slip out of it and make his way lightning fast to the most beautiful girl on the block.”

London sensed the blush creeping up her neck. To distract herself, she reached out to pet the dog. Her fingers glided through his silky, golden fur.

“Mind if I sit?” the handsome actor asked.

“Be my guest.”

He sank into the chair next to her and ran a hand through his thick hair. London suddenly wanted to run her fingers through his hair and not Bunker’s. She averted her eyes and focused on the dog again.

“I owe you a drink. At the least. For Bunker’s impertinence. And for making this mess.” He glanced at his watch. “I guess it’s too early for a glass of wine.”

She grinned. “It’s never too early for wine. I spent a lot of years in Tuscany. I’m surprised my father didn’t give me wine in a sippy cup for breakfast.”

He laughed and she liked how his eyes crinkled up when he did. How the smile touched his mouth as much as his eyes. Seth Walker didn’t smile much on screen but this actor did in real life. It made her pulse quicken. Suddenly, she recalled his name. Knox. Knox Monroe.

“Then wine it is. Anything in particular strike your fancy in the middle of the afternoon?”

“I love a good red. No matter what time it is.”

He gave her an appreciative nod. “A good red for a beautiful redhead. I like it.”

~~~

About the Author

Award-winning and internationally bestselling author Alexa Aston lives with her husband in a Dallas suburb, where she eats her fair share of dark chocolate and plots out stories while she walks every morning. She’s a binge fiend (The Crown and Ozark are favorites) who enjoys travel, sports, and time with her family.

Her historical romances bring to life loveable rogues and dashing knights, while her contemporary romances are light and flirty and sometimes contain a bit of suspense.

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#ReleaseBlitz “Pairs with Life” by John Taylor

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Humorous Fiction, Romantic Comedy 

Date Published: September 15, 2020

Publisher: Hurn Publications

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 Forty-eight-year-old Corbett Thomas, a one-hit wonder of the 90s, now works as the lead sommelier at Napa Valley’s hippest restaurant. Set to become one of the few Master Sommeliers in the world, Corbett self-destructs during his final exam, ruining his last chance at capturing the stardom and adoration he got a taste for in his youth.

When billionaire game designer, Brogan Prescott, asks Corbett to consult on a major vineyard acquisition, Corbett sees it as a shot at redemption, until he learns of Brogan’s ridiculous vision of a virtual-reality, Woke Ant Colony Winery. Disgusted, Corbett decides to buy the vineyard himself and preserve its magic and history. Cashless, clueless, and with his reputation in tatters, Corbett enlists the help of his bass-player-turned-lawyer Seamus O’Flaherty, who may have finally lost his stomach for Corbett’s bad ideas; his uber-rational daughter Remy, who wants Corbett to uncork some family secrets he’d rather leave in the cellar; and Sydney Cameron, whose sudden appearance in Corbett’s life may repair his heart or shatter it forever.

With their help-and sometimes despite it-Corbett discovers what Brogan has known all along: a four-billion-dollar gold deposit lies beneath the vineyard. If Brogan acquires the property, the ensuing gold rush will destroy Napa Valley.

But if Corbett can get out of his own way long enough to purchase the vineyard first, he’ll be faced with the hardest decision of his life: take the fame and fortune he desperately craves, or save the soul of the valley he loves so much.

 


Excerpt

Let’s get one thing clear – I won that bet fair and square, even though I cheated.

I blame the whole thing on Rick Dornin, who was being particularly douchey that night. I used to be able to choose whichever party I wanted to serve without question. That is, until Dornin arrived at Appellation with his anal-retentive online calendar and industrial-grade Napoleon complex.

Yes, that Appellation. The most coveted dining experience in all of Napa Valley, and one of only nine restaurants in America awarded three Michelin stars. It took a DNA sample and a copy of your credit report to get a table, and then you’d better be ready to cash in your 401(k) when the bill came.

The evening started out normally enough. I arrived at the restaurant an hour before my shift to check reservations, talk to Chef Dan about the evening’s specials, and think of pairings for the prix fixe. Dornin was in his office—a modified broom closet next to the staff bathroom that looked like a hoarder’s den with one, tiny deer trail leading to his desk. In fact, he was always in his office, even when service was slammed, which drove me batshit crazy. I don’t care if you’re General Manager or General Patton—when it’s time to schlep a plate or buff a glass, you step up and do it.

Anyway, I poked my head through the doorway and said, “Hey, Rick,” trying to keep things light and cheery. “What do you know about this Harrison party at eight?”

“Whales,” he replied, not bothering to look up from his purchase orders. “Big whales, like Moby Dick whales.”

“Sweet!” Visions of stockbrokers trying to one-up each other with bottles of Screaming Eagle at five thousand bucks a pop danced in my head. Tips so big they come in a brown paper bag.

“Yes.” Dornin finally looked up at me and grinned like he learned how to do it from an infomercial. “They’ll be in the Veraison Room. With Andrew.”

“What?” I lunged into the tiny office, nearly tripping over a carton of water glasses. “You can’t give it to Andrew!”

“I can give it to whoever I want.” He went back to his purchase orders, feigning a nonchalance that made me want to smack him. “If I want to move Felipe off of bussing and let him pop some corks, I could do that, too.”

Time for a different tack—one that wouldn’t involve me going full-on Hannibal Lecter. “I’m just saying that a party like that comes to a restaurant like this to experience the highest level of service in the world. I’m the guy they’re coming for, not Andrew. I sit for my Master Somm next week, and—”

 “You know what you are, Corbett? You’re an overpaid bartender.” Dornin had thin lips and an Adam’s apple the size of Detroit, and it bugged me. “You trained for twenty years to learn how to pull a cork from a bottle and tell people that red wine goes with steak. Whoop-tee-freaking-do. You’ll work the floor tonight, and you can have the Jansen party on the terrace at seven-thirty.”

My left eyebrow started twitching, which happens when I get stressed out. Apparently, no one can see it, but to me, it feels like a two-year-old is digging tiny fingers into my face and stretching it like saltwater taffy. I considered trying the No One Has Experience At Up-Selling Like I Do approach, but this was the third time in as many weeks I’d had such a run-in with Dornin.

I was done.

It was time to talk to Chef Dan.

Most people remember Chef Daniel Foyer from his five seasons on Elite Chef, The Food Channel’s number one show from 1998 to 2002. With a chin so chiseled it could slice a burnt chuck steak and blue eyes that screamed, “Come taste this gazpacho in my bedroom,” he was the prototype celebrity chef. But Father Time had been most inhospitable to Chef Dan, and for the past couple of years the poor soul tried to counteract a rapid aging process by dunking his scalp and Sam Elliott-sized mustache in a fifty-gallon drum of jet-black hair dye. The net effect was so incongruous with the rest of his wrinkled face that I could barely look at him without drowning in the shore break of cognitive dissonance.

Don’t get me wrong, I loved the guy. He was a loyal and trusted friend, and straight-up the most amazing culinary artist of my generation. But if I’d had any money, I would have bought stock in Just For Men and eventually retire on my Chef Dan profits alone.


About the Author

John Taylor has been writing about wine since 2012, but his meanderings on life began way before that. Born and raised in San Diego, California, John moved to Los Angeles in 1982 to pursue dreams of screenwriting and filmmaking. He attended the University of Southern California, where he majored in Shattered Dreams and False Hopes, with a minor in Getting Gut Punched By Reality. After being handed a degree in Journalism in 1987 as a consolation prize, John dove into a career in music. Because getting gut-punched just isn’t painful enough.

By 1996, John and his band, The Uninvited, had produced four independent albums and became one of the most popular acts in the western United States. This lead to a deal on Atlantic Records, which released the band’s self-titled debut album in 1997. The band had two Top 100 hits, and toured nationally with Dave Matthews, Blues Traveller, Third Eye Blind and many other acts. Their music appeared in the TV shows Beverly Hills 90210 and Party of Five, and in the motion pictures The Commandments and North Beach. The band can also be heard in several HBO Documentaries, video games and on that annoying “One Hit Wonders of The 90’s” station your co-worker always plays on Spotify.

In 2001, John’s vast experience in shattered dreams was once again called into play as the band hung up their touring shoes for good. After a brief but horrifying career in real estate, John got wise and made a career out of his favorite hobby – wine – and has held various sales & marketing positions in Napa Valley since 2011. John’s writing career started in earnest at this point, with blogs, essays and short stories appearing in various publications. John is the author of three novels, including the aptly-titled Pairs With: Life, which will be released by Hurn Publications in September 2020.

 

Author Links

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RABT Book Tours & PR

#ReleaseBlitz “Playing for Keeps (The Game Changers Series)” by A.C. Arthur

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The Game Changers

When the world counted them out, they knew it was time to change the game. They’ve been friends since landing in the same group home when they were teenagers. Now, due to life altering events, they’re each forced to once again pull themselves out of the ashes in a quest to find who they were meant to be. The answer, now that they’re all back in their hometown of Providence—a small town centrally located between Washington D.C. and Alexandria, Virginia—is to stick together. By pooling their resources, the wayward town troublemakers are now owners of Game Changers, a sports bar where their goal is to make sure that the good times outweigh the bad. Except, the bad always finds them. Luckily, a woman will come into each of their lives, not only to challenge them, but to also bring out the best in every member of this group of Black men that nobody ever expected to succeed.

This fall get ready for a small town with big city problems, boys growing into men and learning to stand their ground, strong women with their own goals and hearts full of love, and of course, hot and steamy nights!


The series CONTINUES WITH PLAYING FOR KEEPS

Delano “Del” Greer plays by the rules at all times. Especially after a scandal ruined his career at the police department and threatened to destroy his family’s reputation in his hometown of Providence. Now, he’s focused on establishing Game Changers as a  reputable sports bar. Once a staunch adversary of social media, Del puts the success of the bar first and gives it a try, using a fake name of course. When his trial run quickly lands him in a steamy online affair he’s happy to play along, until he learns that the woman on the other end of those hot text messages is his sister’s best friend.

Working alongside her father at his auto body shop since she was six years old, Rylan Kent is the polar opposite of her beauty pageant winning sister. She’s been best friends With Terra Greer for about the same amount of time. So imagine Rylan’s surprise when she inadvertently learns the identity of the guy who responded to her drunken chat and continued to share explicit ways he could bring her pleasure. Now, Rylan has no idea how the temperamental and all-about-keeping-up-appearances Del is going to react when he finds out the woman he’s been talking sex with is actually the one he called “greasy-peasy” all through high school. 

PFK cover

PLAYING FOR KEEPS

BY A.C. ARTHUR
AVAILABLE NOW ON

AMAZON



ABOUT A.C. ARTHUR

AC Arthur was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland where she currently resides with her husband, three children, grandson and an English bulldog named Vader. An active imagination and a love for reading encouraged her to begin writing in high school and she hasn’t stopped since.Working in the legal field for over twenty-five years, AC has seen lots of horrific things and longs for the safe haven of a romance novel. To date, she has written in several genres: YA paranormal (w/a Artist Arthur), small town romance as Lacey Baker, and sexy contemporary and paranormal romance. With intriguing plots and sexy love scenes, AC brings a new edge to romance!

CONNECT WITH A.C. ARTHUR

AUTHOR SITE | FACEBOOKTWITTER | INSTAGRAM | PINTEREST | BOOKBUB | GOODREADS | AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE


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