The Romance Reviews

The Romance Reviews

Friday, January 31, 2014

Kay Phoenix chats about herself and her latest release Boralis Ardor

I wish to welcome Kay Phoenix to my little spot in the blogosphere. Fellow Las Vegan and great lady, I'm pleased you can be here today. Here is a little bit about this talented and creative author.
Author Kay Phoenix believes in the miraculous,
transformative power of love. She believes it is possible for the human heart to be reborn just as the mythological creature, the Phoenix, is able to rise from the ashes of its former self.

Ms. Phoenix is a rare bird herself – a lifelong resident of Las Vegas, Nevada. She serves as the Membership Chair for the Las Vegas Romance Writers and is also a member of the Kiss of Death and Women’s Fiction chapters of Romance Writers of America.

Prior to writing, Kay was a Graphic Artist for 15 years, and her designs can be seen in casinos around the world. Kay also holds an Associate’s degree in Graphic Technology. In her spare time she enjoys hiking, camping and photography and is pursuing a Bachelor’s in Psychology. She is also a member of the Vegas Artists Guild.
Now for the fun stuff. I asked a few questions and she was gracious enough to answer them.

Do you do anything to get you into the zone to write?  I like to have a cup of coffee nearby, which usually ends up getting cold.  I drink it anyway.

 Which authors inspire your writing?  Mostly, it’s my fellow writers in my local RWA group as well as my critique group friends.  Seeing their success inspires me, and hopefully vice versa. 

 What is your favorite book, character and why? Hmm, that’s such a hard question.  Currently, it would have to be Diana Gabaldon’s “Outlander” series with Jamie Fraser as the hero.  Why do I love Jamie?  I think it’s his honesty and humor.  He isn’t an alpha hero because he makes mistakes (and gets seasick a lot).  I’m excited about the “Outlander” series that Starz is filming right now. 

 Do you prefer to write erotic or sweet?  I prefer writing sweet, but I like to read erotic sometimes.  Perhaps I’ll try my hand at erotic someday; I have a few ideas swimming around in my head.

 Which famous person, living or dead,  are you drawn to?  It doesn’t seem to go along with romance writing at all, but I really love Walt Disney.  He had a dream and saw it through.

 Where do you see yourself in five years?  I’m not sure where I’ll be but I know that I’ll still be writing and putting forth my best efforts. 


Finish this sentence: I know I’ve made it when: someone I don’t know wants me to sign their book.

 What advice would you give aspiring writers?  Don’t give up!  Join RWA and surround yourself with like minded peers to inspire you.   Tell your story, don’t follow trends. 

 What do you see yourself writing in the future?  There has been a steampunk gypsy story bouncing around in my head for awhile now and I’m eager to start on it.

 If you could have one superpower what would it be and why?  Teleportation!  No more traffic or lines.  I’d have so much more time to write.

 What time of the day are you at your best to write?  In the mornings after my son is at school. 

And now for something completely different…

What do you look at first with an attractive man or woman, face, body or smile?  I notice the face first, then body.  You can tell a lot about a person by the lines of their face.  I’m more attracted to a good personality than a perfect outer shell. 

 Explain your perfect day.  Disneyland with my loved ones … with no lines (does that ever happen?)!

 What is the most decadent desert you can’t say no to?  I love a chocolate milkshake from Dairy Queen with whipped cream and a cherry on top.  It’s pretty simple, but to me, it’s heaven! 

 Do you have a favorite holiday what is it and what makes it special to you?  Halloween is my favorite holiday because I love seeing what people in my life decide to dress up as.  It’s only one night a year…have fun!  Life is short. 

 What key words describe you best?  Tenacious! 

Her new release is out on February 6th

Lauren Madison’s life started unraveling at a speed too fast for her to keep up with.  Every truth was torn away, and the pieces that were left painted no clear pictures at all…only more confusion. 
The only pillar of strength in her fragile life was David Wagner, her bodyguard who was placed in witness protection, and she was to have no more contact with him.  But, what had he seen that day, and why couldn’t she remember?
She had no choice but to run.  And if her life was threatened again, who would be there to protect her?

Want to know more about Kay?

 Where to buy my book (it’s on pre-order until February 6, 2014):



Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Dark Hunter-Dark Breed Enforcer Book 3 #MFRWHooks

MFRW Authors Blog
Welcome to another installment of Book Hooks. This Wednesday gives you a peek into the world of the Dark Breed through they eyes of a dark breed who is not an Enforcer. Dark Hunter started out as a very short story for an online magazine. After finishing it I couldn't leave it alone and knew I needed to get my hands in it and tell the story behind the small piece I published. Here is a little about Dark Hunter.



Available at:
Vampire Mari Ankamunan struggles to pick up the pieces of
her life after her bar The Asp becomes a war zone between
the Enforcers and members of the Preservation Society, who
want all dark breeds wiped out. The sudden appearance of
the only man she ever loved brings her world to a crashing
halt, for she witnessed his brutal murder two thousand years
Navar’s spoken oaths to his Sire cost him Mari. Torn from her side by the sidhe queen, he is her Hunter, delivering justice for crimes against the breeds. Now freed he returns to his lovers side only to be caught in a dark plot where Mari is targeted for death.
The stakes are high, can they uncover a deadly plot against
the Enforcers or will Navar lose Mari, forever by an assassin’s
Book Hook
Mari blinked at the two men, feeling left out of the loop in the
XY-chromosome chat. Males. Can’t live without them and
can’t kill them. Irritation spiked into the red zone, her
patience threadbare for the bullshit. Placing her diminutive
self between the two towering males, she gave them both a
fearless glare and fisted her hands on her hips.
All conversation stopped as they stared down at her with surprise. Good, now she had their attention. “I’ve been alive since the time of Cleopatra. I didn’t survive all those centuries by being a fucking weak female



Monday, January 27, 2014

Pick Me Up Monday-Outlines, Plotting and another in book starting edits

There is just something about this that grabs my attention, perhaps it's the bit of fur wrapped across that yummy back?
Well, here we are again on my least favorite day of the week. I'm sooo not a Monday person. I have to work real hard to find anything which will pull me out of the doldrums. If you know me you already know there are two things I detest more than anything. Mondays and Mornings. The dreaded double M's lol!
The only thing which perks me up is getting immersed in my books. Sure there are things about the process which are my least favorite, one being edits. Once I finish a book I start at the beginning editing each chapter as I go, this can be time consuming, but wow, do you ever find the errors. Another big help is my beta readers who find the others that you, as the writer seem to be blind to.
So, with Dark Desire preparing for editing I'm very glad I have one in outlining stage while I'm plotting a new project which will be a stand alone book. Yep, no series on this one is in the works. I have two series right now and starting a third would be a bit much at the moment.
So what am I working on? the second book for The Guardians of Drakkan called Firestorm, due out in June and outlining the next book to the Dark Breed Enforcer. Dark Desire leaves things pretty tense and will need the next book ready to go as quickly as possible, since there is a lot going on in Zeke's book which, changes the whole dynamic of the books to come. That's all I'll say at the moment. After Dark Desire comes out then I will talk more about my Dark Breed Enforcer world.
I am plotting a contemporary to throw into the mix and hope to finish it this year, but we will just have to see how the muse works it out and yes, this is the one I'm planning on being a single least I'm not setting it up to be more than that.
In other news for you,I have a busy blog this week with this Book Hooks on Wednesday, a special guest chatting with me on Friday and my teaser on Sunday. I do plan on another blog on craft here real soon and just formulating what topic it will be on at the moment. If you have any suggestions on what you would like to see just leave me a comment. Hell, leave me a comment to just say hi and I'll respond back. Well back to the keyboard, these books won't write themselves no matter how much I ask lol!
Have a great week and drop me a line. Tell me what you would like to see on my blog and I'll do my best to see it happen. Talk to you again on *shudder* Monday.
Have a great one.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Enter there World -Dark Passion Rising:Book 1 of Dark Breed Enforcers #SPeekSunday

This week my offering comes from Dark Passion Rising, the first book in my Dark Breed Enforcer series.
            Tambra Ellis has just had her world turned upside down!
Surviving a bite from a Lycan, attracted to one hot vampire
guy and now she has to look forward to turning into
something from some bad werewolf movie.

          Marcus Valerian has enough on his plate without the
added complication of Tambra Ellis. Fiery and independent?
Sure. Beautiful with a body made for sin? Oh Yeah. And a
human cop. Tambra is everything he needs to stay away

    As leader of the Tribunal’s enforcers it’s up to him to find
out why the Dark Breeds are going feral and killing humans
in ever increasing numbers. Tambra’s life is in the balance as
the secrets of her past place her in the middle of old deceits
and a betrayal that will change the world forever.

     Will Marcus and Tambra’s love survive or will it be too
Sneak Peek
“Oh, God. This isn’t happening. It can’t be real. Werewolves don’t exist.”
“Believe me, they do exist. Denying what you have seen will be foolish and dangerous, for you and everyone you’re around.”

“No. I don’t believe this. I won’t believe it. There has to be  some logical explanation for what I saw.” The sharp edge of hysteria rose in her voice. “I will not turn into a dog. I don’t even like dogs.”
That made him smile despite the seriousness of the situation.
She was absolutely adorable and he was in deep shit because of it. Yet, he couldn’t seem to make himself care. “Wolf, not dog. You were bitten by a Lycan, not Lassie.”
“Ha, ha, laugh it up big guy. You don’t have to worry about fleas.”
Laughter rumbled out of him, surprising him as much as it seemed to anger her. Tambra stood in front of him, her golden hair tumbling wildly down her back, clutching the comforter tightly to her breasts. Her blue eyes glittered with anger and Marcus fought the urge to pull her into his arms and stroke her soft, creamy skin. He clenched his hands into fists and kept still. She was still too pale,evidence of the weakness he knew was plaguing her but, damn, she was magnificent. A true warrior, ready to fight regardless of the fact she couldn’t win.

Available now at:

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Enter their World -Passion's Flight #MFRWhooks

MFRW Authors Blog
Welcome to another installment of Passion's Flight, Book 2 in the Dark Breed Enforcer series.
Tegan and Kyra's first meeting is not all hearts and flowers, more insults and snarls as the two indomitable spirits clash.
Book Hook from Passion's Flight


She pulled back from him. Her voice brushed over him like velvet, yet her words rang with steel. “I am quite capable of taking care of myself. Just get out of here now”
 “I know how to handle myself, so don’t worry your pretty little head about it,” he purred, giving her his best seductive smile. He watched those gorgeous eyes narrow with irritation at him.
“My pretty little head? You just didn’t say that to me did you? Of course you didn’t. Because if you did that would mean I was dealing with a real imbecile. No, I take that back. I would be talking to a chauvinistic, egomaniacal jerk who had the IQ of a rock.”
“Wow, a rock huh?” He glared down at the woman, all thoughts sexual dissolving in an instant. “Who the hell are you, lady?” He felt his temper rise, never a good sign when his cat prowled just under his skin. “I’ve been called worse things in my life, and though I would love to stand here and argue with you, I just don’t have that kind of time, so if you don’t mind, move your ass.”
“I have never met a more disagreeable person in all of my life,” she huffed.
“That life will be very short and painful if we don’t get the hell out of her. Now!”
“I just so happen to know this area very well and I don’t need to be saved,” she snapped back at his abruptness.
Without comment Tegan headed away from the decimated settlement, turning his back from the sight of burning bodies and the stench of death. His long strides eating up the distance, with a frustrated growl she followed just a few paces behind a strained silence stretching between them.


Passion’s Flight is available through

Hope you enjoyed the small excerpt, be sure to hop to all the great reads. Just click here and have a wonderful Wednesday.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Pick Me Up Monday -Upcoming releases

Happy Monday to you all.
Here is something to get you ready for the day.
With Soul Fire set to release in February and Dark Desire finishing up and heading to my publisher it promises to be quite a busy couple of months.
To kick off Soul Fire's release I'm holding a month long giveaway at Coffee Times and Romance. I'll be sharing the link closer to the date with you all.
With February being the month for love and romance I have quite a few giveaways I'm setting up for you all and will post all links so keep checking back for the latest news.
So, with Soul Fire done and Dark Desire almost ready for my publisher what else do I have going on for you?
The second book of The Guardians of Drakkan called Flashfire is set to release in June 2014, I have another yet untitled book#5  of the Dark Breed Enforcer series in the works, and a contemporary romance I'm outlining, among many other projects.
Well it's back to the computer for me, have a wonderful week and we will see you next week.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Soul Fire -#3 Peek #SPeekSunday

Happy Sunday and welcome to another sneak peek Soul Fire, releasing in February and will be available in eBook.
What do you say when up against a god determined to save his children by any means possible?
Aslynn is soon to find out that her life will never be the same again.

Dear goddess, help me!
Aslynn fought to control the rising tide of magic crashing over her in a crushing wave. This felt unlike anything she experienced before, no gentle beckoning to wrap her into its folds in loving acceptance. No, this was dominating and ancient. A vast profound intelligence within its pulsing depths held her fast, threatening to swallow her sanity. She shrank from the omnipotent presence within the gyrating sphere of the mist, there at the heart of the power.
No, do not fret, daughter of Danu, you have nothing to fear. I wish a boon from your kind to save my people. Do you agree to this?
The voice deep and decidedly masculine thundered in her head, causing her temples to throb. Fear clawed through her and her gut clenched with rising nausea. Her skin burned from the alien magic enshrouding her, searing her as surely as a flame held to her skin.
“P…p…please release me,” she stuttered and cared not if she looked weak.
The power eased back as she fell to her knees upon the soft, cool grass, filling her lungs with sweet air, relishing the simple act of breathing.
I sense your potential child. You are of great import and the key to saving my children.”
Enjoy the other very talented authors who are offering up their sneak peeks for your pleasure.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Enter their World -Passion's Flight #2 of the Dark Breed Enforcer Series#MFRWHooks

MFRW Authors Blog
Welcome to the world of the Dark Breed Enforcers.
A little about the book
With ferals attacking the human populace in greater numbers than ever before, Tegan Murin has his hands full these days. When he is ordered to find and destroy a deadly artifact known as Oman’s Seal, deal with his estranged step-father and find a missing archeologist. He’s a bit irritable. Add into the mix a recurring dream of one sexy seductress leading him to his death… well, you get one very pissed off were-panther.
Kyra Navarone is an archeologist who is more than what she seems. Escaping from the ferals who captured her, she ends up running into the brooding, irritating man who makes her blood run hot just with one look. Her life depends on the betrayal of this compelling man, but how can she live with herself afterward?
With ferals and an Atlantean Tracker closing in, they are running out of time, Tegan and Kyra must learn to trust each other in order survive. More hangs in the balance than their lives. Their actions could very well spell the end of everything for not just their world, but the world hidden beneath the waves as well.
Book Hook: 
“Is that all you got, asshole?” Tegan growled.
The vampire hissed, baring his impressively large fangs, his fingernails lengthening to razor sharp points. Tegan laughed with dark intent. His claws punched out of his hands with the sound of tearing flesh. The dagger sharp points, catching the light from the crescent moon shining above the filthy alley. Forming a fist, he fought off the rank odor of rotten garbage and urine trying for a permanent home in his nostrils.
“Mine are bigger than yours,” he said with a menacing smile, wiggling his claws “Game on.”
See all the delightful book hooks by clicking below.


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Chatting with Jean Maxwell - Author of Indecent Proposal and Chance to win her book!

I'm so happy to have Jean Maxwell as my guest today. We have published through Evernight for years now, but never been able to snag her for my blog.
In addition to answering all my 'must know' questions she is going to hold a giveaway for her latest release Indecent Proposal. With out further delay let me introduce the incredibly talented Jean Maxwell.
Do you do anything to get you into the zone to write?
Lately its been tough! When I first started I could hardly wait to get to my laptop every night. Now I seem to put it off! However if I start thinking about the story and my characters earlier in the day, I have some scenarios in my head that make me want to sit down and write them. Wine, instrumental music and candles go a long way, too!
 Which authors inspire your writing?
Ha! Several. Some by wanting to imitate them and others by how bad they are and knowing I can do better!
What is your favorite book, character and why?
A Nameless Witch, by A. Lee Martinez. The witch (who, as title suggests, has no name so I can’t say), tells the story in first person, is extremely brave and clever, and is completely accepting of herself and her situation. She doesn’t care what others think of her and she keeps true friends around her.
Do you prefer to write erotic or sweet?
If I do my job right, I can have both. It’s not really a preference, I think it’s more of a balance.
Which famous person, living or dead, are you drawn to?
Guitarist and songwriter Stevie Ray Vaughan.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
At my condo in Cabo, writing hot stuff under the hot sun!
Finish this sentence: I know I’ve made it when –
My friend Maryse can walk up to me in the Ft. McMurray airport, say “are you Jean Maxwell?” and it won’t be a joke!
What advice would you give aspiring writers?
Like Nike, ‘just do it.’ And don’t let anyone, including yourself, say you can’t. Also, jump into NaNoWriMo this November.
What do you see yourself writing in the future?
I’ve always been a sci-fi fan so could see doing something of that nature in the years to come.
If you could have one superpower what would it be and why?
A toss-up between flying and laser-eye death ray.
What time of the day are you at your best to write?
When I say to myself “get your @ss to that computer and start writing”
And now for something completely different…
What do you look at first with an attractive man or woman, face, body or smile?
Explain your perfect day.
Waking up to a sunny day and a sexy text from a certain admirer; A great coffee, a walk, swim or bike ride, shopping with no budget limit, dinner out then a movie or concert. 
What is the most decadent desert you can’t say no to?
Chocolate cheesecake. Just about any kind of cheesecake, really.
Do you have a favorite holiday what is it and what makes it special to you?
Definitely Christmas. The month-long buildup, the smells, the movies and the music always make me smile. You’d be hard pressed to find me grumpy at Christmas. It somehow makes me feel safe, protected, and suspended in time for many magical weeks!
What key words describe you best?
Funny. Creative. Perfectionist.
Do you want to do a giveaway? If so please put the information here:
What is your prize?
A free e-copy of Indecent Proposal
How do they enter to win?
AND/OR follow my blog at
When will you be announcing the winner?
Tuesday, Jan. 21
Want to know more about Jean Maxwell and her books?
Official website:
TW: @dearjeanmaxwell
Here is a little taste of Indecent Proposal.
Blurb: When a hard-working professional girl gets overloaded with projects she tends to go a little crazy. Add in a hot, hunky company newcomer that she must work late into the night with and the stage is set for a workplace gone wild!!
Workaholic PR Manager Carlin Cates is asked to drop everything to help out a new recruit in completing a bid proposal with tight deadlines. She’s not crazy about putting in the extra time until the newcomer, Thatcher Banks, turns out to be the hottest Project Manager in the business!
She flipped a switch, and the overhead lamps in her office burst to life with an audible snap. Removing her coat, she glanced at her desk. Stacked in a neat arrangement were rolls of antacid tablets, a bottle of Pepto Bismol, packets of Alka Seltzer, Advil gelcaps, a collection of herbal teas, and a box of multigrain crackers. All the remedies for an upset stomach known to man in one pile! Next to these sat a potted plant with a card tied to it with a pink ribbon.
Carlin fingered the little tag, an insane hope rising at what name she might see on the signature. She’d barely read the first words, “Hoping at least one of these will cure what ails you…” when a prickling sensation began at the base of her neck. She pivoted, and there, like magic, stood Thatcher Banks.
He leaned against the doorframe with his arms folded and ankles crossed, as though he’d been there forever. An amused grin creased his handsome face.
“Good Morning, Miss Cates. You’re up and at ‘em early. You must have slept well?”
Carlin stared at the man. Her lips seemed to have stopped working. With great effort, she found her voice. “Yes. I did.” His brown eyes transfixed her, glowing like pools of sunlit honey. She could not look away.
“Well then, you won’t have need of any of my…remedies,” he said, nodding toward the desk, but his gaze never wavering from her.
Carlin reminded herself to breathe, to stay focused, even as she felt imprisoned in the warm light of his eyes.
“I…feel fine,” she heard a voice say, knowing it was her own yet hearing it as if from a distance. She forged a coy smile. “Thank you. For thinking of me.”
Thatcher cocked his head to one side. “Ah, well. Such is my luck. A fair young lady to rescue. Only I find she has rescued herself. Pity.” He unfolded his stance and stood straight, placing his hands behind his back. “Might there be some other assistance I can render?”
Carlin gave herself a mental shake. What did he mean by that? She touched her fingertips to the desktop, to stabilize the trembling in her hands. “I thought I was here to help you, not the other way around.”
Thatcher shrugged and took a measured, deliberate step into her office. “You’ve already been that,” he said. “Why not help each other?” A protracted silence followed, and though his body remained in place, Carlin felt him moving closer in a crazy, magnetic way that had no basis in reality. Her own body felt abuzz with electricity. “And it was my pleasure to be thinking of you,” he continued.
Her mouth opened in response, when the card reader at the entrance beeped. She glanced toward the sound. She could hear the swish-click of the front door opening and the familiar stomp-stomp ritual that her boss habitually performed upon entering the building, whether winter or summer. Raymond had arrived.
“But I suppose duty calls,” Thatcher said, his voice lightening. “Let’s get to it.” He smiled, a full and playful smile meant only for her, before turning away and leaving the room. “Hello, Raymond!”
Carlin blinked. His intent seemed unmistakable. Thatcher Banks was about to proposition her.
“Banks! Aren’t you the early bird,” she heard Raymond say.
“Sometimes I’m just the worm, my friend.”
Worm? She pictured herself as a bird, tugging a helpless worm from the ground with her beak. Better yet…she pictured wrapping her lips around Thatcher’s cock and giving it a tug, right here in the office. She felt certain he would have a magnificent one. Would he let her do it? Would she actually do it if he let her?
Hiding a naughty grin, she moved the collection of gifts aside to begin work. She liked to impress people with her speed and effectiveness on the job. Yet the longer she took, the longer she could keep Thatcher Banks on hand. Did that constitute a conflict? Didn’t matter. The proposal had to be filed by four o’clock. Carlin fired up her laptop and launched her mail program. A long parade of messages loaded, bearing attachments and comments.
Carlin filtered through each and saved the pertinent files. The blanks in the RFP filled rapidly with each new piece of information. Completion wasn’t far off, she realized. She may not have Mr. Banks around much longer. She sighed while sending documents to print, and as she stood to retrieve them from the printer tray, an email notification flashed.
Miss Cates, you’ve been working very hard. Would you care to join me in the coffee room for a short break? Thatcher.
She sat down and considered the words on her screen for a moment. Her hands seemed to have a mind of their own as they flew to the keyboard.
Yes I would. Be right there. Send.
Rational thought evaporated, and though Carlin knew she might be stepping into a giant cow pie of inappropriateness, she couldn’t care less. Printouts forgotten, she made a beeline for the coffee room.
Although public, the coffee room’s small size didn’t lend itself as a gathering place for employees, so the chances of it being occupied were slim. As predicted, the space appeared empty as she stepped inside. The door eased shut behind her.
“Do you take yours with cream?”
Carlin closed her eyes and smiled in both relief and wonderment at the familiar and sexy voice that spoke the question. Would something crazy happen here?
Thatcher’s arms slipped around her waist, and his body drew close to hers from behind. “I hope I’m not being too forward,” he whispered in her ear. “But I sense we have some strong feelings toward each other, no?”
“No. I mean yes,” she stammered.
“Yes what?” His hands began to glide upward.
“Yes, I have strong feelings.” She drew in a ragged breath as his palms reached the underside of her breasts and squeezed them.
“I do like this shirt you have on. Very sexy. Did you wear it for my benefit?” He nuzzled her neck beneath one ear. The hands kept moving…cupping both breasts in earnest and squeezing harder.
“I think I wore it…for my benefit,” Carlin said, her voice a breathy whisper. Dear God, her tits hadn’t been touched in months. Her nipples budded hard beneath her bra. Could he feel them from the outside? Her body shivered.
Thatcher chuckled low in her ear. “Has it been that long, dear? We must fix that. Someone as lovely as you shouldn’t go unattended.”
With that, he dropped his hands and swatted her on the behind. “Coffee break’s over. May we continue after four? I’ll let you know where.”
Carlin whirled an about face and glared at him, incredulous. “Excuse me? What sort of game are you playing, Mr. Banks? I’ll tell you when and where I’m going to be at any given moment.”
Thank you for being my guest today Jean and for the awesome giveaway.
Good luck everyone.