Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Mal: A Salvation Kings MC Short Story by Ana Night






Blurb

Sean has been forging things since he was a teenager. Paintings, vases, and documents he can do easily. He’s even gotten very good at pretending he’s not in love with Mal. He risked his relationship with the Kings for Mal and he doesn’t even know it. That’s mostly because Sean can’t find him, though. Lucky for him, one day, out of the blue, the man shows up at his doorstep. The not so lucky part? The bullet wound Mal is suffering from.

Mal has been a part of the darker side of the world for most of his life. Killing is what he does best. Then he had to go and accidentally save Sean’s life two years ago. He’s been in love with Sean and running from those feeling ever since. Being cooped up with Sean doesn’t help the situation. He wants Sean more than anything, but most of all, he wants a relationship, and he knows Sean doesn’t want that.

Their attraction burns hotter with each day and, in the end, they can’t resist. But with danger lying in wait for them, ready to strike at any second, can Mal convince Sean to give their relationship a real shot?

Mal belongs to the Salvation Kings MC series but the MCs are not from the motorcycle club. It’s not recommended to be read as a standalone. Best read after Joker, Salvation Kings MC book 2.

Review 
My Rating - 4 Stars!


Mal: A Salvation Kings MC Short Story is a delightful read by Ana Night. The reader needs to read Saint and Joker first to fully appreciate this one. It's a good follow up to these books, leaving me happy to have gotten Sean and Mal's story.
When the story starts, Mal has been shot and Sean is trying to help him. What follows is a fantastic story where the men end up helping one other. 

Sean's a man who's down on himself, feeling like a failure after losing everything he's worked for. While he's helping Sean, Mal's there for him too, trying to lift him up again.

These two are hot together, with intense attraction, need, and heat between them. My favorite scene is one focusing on a scar. It's an amazingly tender scene of acceptance.

This Ana Night book has danger and emotion, as Ana expertly weaves a tale to redeem a bad guy and make him so darn loveable.

Mal is a quick, short romance that's full of heat! It's a story of confusion, confessions, and surprises. It's a steamy read that's also sweet. I am loving this series.




Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Sidearms and Spareribs (Hearts of Snow Lake #2) by Ashton Cade








Blurb

Sean:

I'm a cop on leave. I fled to Snow Lake for some R&R after what I like to call a 'workplace injury.' Since getting shot, I'm jumpy—I can't help but be spooked, imagining danger around every corner. There’s only one man who makes me feel like my old self—Porter Gaines, the town butcher. He makes me laugh, makes me forget my pain, my fear. But there’s something more. Deep in those dark eyes, I see more than a glimmer of desire. Porter might be the medicine I need—igniting the fire inside me again and making me appreciate the warmth and beauty of home.

When I came out of the operating room, I was looking for something—someone—that didn’t exist. Or I thought he didn’t. I stayed up nights, wanting and wishing. I thought I was going crazy, but meeting Porter makes me feel sane.

I’ve been married to my job for so long, and my relationship with Porter is just temporary. But when Porter’s little brother is implicated in a crime he didn’t commit, I know I’m needed back in Snow Lake. Maybe I’ll find the truth—and my reason for living. 

Porter:

I don’t get many dates in a sleepy little town like Snow Lake. With my full cargo hold of emotional baggage, guys aren’t exactly banging on my door. Sure, I’ve got my dreams. I saw what my father had with his wife before they died, and I always wanted that kind of happiness. It’s just not in the cards for me. 

When I meet Sean, the s*xy cop with dark hair and midnight eyes, I’m tempted far more than I want to admit. I keep my cool whenever I see him, hoping he can’t read my dirty mind or hear my jaw drop to the floor. I should tell him how I feel, but going for it has never been my thing.

I like my small, comfortable life. I made a new normal after the accident that took everything away from me, and I work hard to keep my sh!t together. Throwing a monkey wrench into the whole thing is... terrifying. 

He’s only here for a little while, a tempting voice says. How much harm can a week-long wrench do?
A lot, another, less-tempting voice answers.

After what I've been through, I'm not sure I can resist the kind of love that Sean's offering. I just hope it doesn't destroy me.

Review 
My Rating - 5 Stars!


Sidearms and Spareribs is a super sweet small town romance by Ashton Cade. 

This second book in the Hearts of Snow Lake series is the story of two men. One is grieving the loss of his parents while having to raise his younger brother. The other is in town for a short time while recovering from a work place injury.

As Sean is only in town temporarily, his new found feelings for this small town boy cause a lot off confusion. What follows is a slightly angsty read that includes some homophobia, including a scene which left me gutted.

Both Sean and Porter are interesting and likeable characters. Each have some unigue issues to deal with individually, as well as to make a relationship between them work. The issues with Porter's brother are realistically developed and explored. I love his brother and all he brings to their tale.

This is the story of finding someone who calms you, anchors you, and helps you laugh at yourself. It's a story of finding a purpose in life and grabbing onto that purpose. 

As with Motorcycles and Macarons, the first book of the series, the writing is good, with a nice flow and some intriguing characters. The small town is well written, with many characters adding to the story, and a whole lot of people who know everyone and everyone's business.

I highly recommend Sidearms and Spareribs to anyone in the mood for a sweet, fluffy, and tender small town romance. This Ashton Cade standalone read will not disappoint. 





All or Nothing by Riina YT






Title: All or Nothing
Author: Riina Y.T.
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: October 7, 2019
Heat Level: 3 - Some Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 42200
Genre: Contemporary, LGBT, snowstorm, stranded, college students, slow burn, family, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, Poconos

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Synopsis

When shy sociology student Remington Belotti finds himself stuck on campus two days before Christmas, the handsome and untouchable Carter McCormack unexpectedly offers him a ride home. Having secretly longed for Carter’s attention for over a year, his sudden interest, along with the kind gesture, gives Remmy hope that his attraction might be returned, after all.

On their way to Remy’s hometown, they encounter bad weather and are overtaken by an unforgiving blizzard, leaving them stranded along the highway. The sparks of attraction fly in the safety of Carter’s car, where they share heartfelt confessions along with body heat and gummy bears. When they check into a motel for the night, their electrifying bond deepens, and their shared time might just bring Remmy and Carter the Christmas surprise they could only have dreamed of.


Review 
My Rating - 4 Stars!


Riina YT's All Or Nothing captured my attention from the start. I always love a good college romance, and this one started off with that sucked me right in.

In this warm Christmas story, Remy and Carter are two college boys heading on a road trip home for the holidays. Their story includes secret long time crushes, a snow storm, a driving trip, and forced proximity. Spending time together suddenly have the men getting to know each other. They are a sweet couple, and I enjoy the natural way that things develop between them.

It's a great quick story of two men bonding during a snowstorm and all the feels of the holidays.
I love and adore Remy's family.

All Or Nothing is a pleasant new adult read. It's like a sweet Hallmark Holiday movie. I will definitely be adding this to my Christmas re-read list for when I'm in the mood for something sweet, tender, and angst free.

Excerpt

All or Nothing
Riina Y.T. © 2019
All Rights Reserved

Remmy

Picking up my bike keys might have been the most irresponsible decision I ever made. But, I pep talked myself, over the years you collected enough experience so there’s no need to worry. After all, I was confident in my riding skills. I might even make it on time if I left right now. Already packed and dressed in my biking gear, I’d been pacing restlessly around the room for the past twenty minutes or so, going through all the options left.

I couldn’t afford a last minute plane ticket, and the Greyhound was already fully booked. I’d checked, reloading the website repeatedly to make sure it wasn’t a glitch. Not wanting to hitchhike with a total stranger and risk ending up in the middle of nowhere, likely in a million pieces, the only way I’d be able to make it home now was my motorcycle. The current conditions weren’t so bad here in Allentown, but I was fairly certain the roads would be a real pain farther east.

Sure, I could call my parents and explain my situation, and they’d probably do everything humanly possible to arrange a flight for me or something. Maybe send one of my uncles or brothers-in-law to get me. My pride wouldn’t let me dial their numbers though. I was an adult now, independent and all that, as much as one gets to be at college anyway. I’d feel like a failure if I ran to Mom and Dad, asking them to fix this, like I’d let them down. And besides, a big family like ours didn’t have the luxury of wasting money on an expensive plane ticket or an unnecessary roundtrip to Pennsylvania.

Maybe I was being irrational, but I never wanted to be a disappointment to them, and Mom would never forgive me if I missed Christmas with the family. Everyone would be there: my aunts and uncles, cousins and grandparents. If I’m being honest, the holidays were a nightmare for my introverted self, but I never failed to put on my best smiles for Mom and Dad. A couple of hours with my extended family was as exhausting as a twenty-four-hour lecture on criminal justice would likely be, but I’d sit through our dinners—noisy kid cousins and all—any day. There was nothing more important than family in the Bellotti household.

I startled when my phone vibrated between my fingers. Impatiently swiping my thumb across the glaring screen, I prayed the message was from someone who’d read my Facebook posts. Instead, a text from Mom asked if Cody and I were already on our way. I couldn’t tell her the truth or else she’d worry too much. Cody was on the other side of the hall, lying in bed with a high fever and an ear infection. Both of us were from Connecticut, so we’d arranged to carpool for the holidays like we did in freshman year. I never imagined I’d end up stranded on campus.

Ignoring Mom’s message, I opened the Facebook app for the nth time to make sure I hadn’t missed a reply or instant message. I’d asked for a ride, posting to my profile and the group site for my sociology class, hoping someone was still around campus and planning to head east. Nothing. Luck didn’t seem to be on my side.

All right then. I slid my phone into the breast pocket of my leather jacket, pulled on my gloves, shouldered my backpack, and with a last look around the silent room, switched off the lights and stepped into the eerily empty corridor.

The late afternoon air was crisp, and I caught my breath the moment I stepped outside. Snow crunched and squeaked underfoot as I hurried along the sidewalk. A gust of wind whipped wild flurries against my face, and my nose froze right along with the naked winter trees lining the roadside and everything else around me.

As soon as I reached my motorcycle, I set about getting everything ready for the road. The metallic-blue Yamaha was my first; my one and only love. Thunder, I’d named her, because she was loud and fast and had been a birthday present from Dad when I got my license at sixteen. During my last visit home, he’d gotten her a new set of winter tires and some neat accessories. He loved spoiling my bike, and I’m sure I must’ve gotten my love for motorcycling from him, much to Mom’s dismay. She was constantly worried something might happen to either of us, as if cars were much safer. Similar to the fear of flying—irrational but a primal and elemental emotion.

Gusts of icy wind blew wickedly against my face, and I huffed a curse. The cold was already creeping in, despite my layers and layers of winter gear. I’d also exchanged my enormous suitcase for my MOTOTREK backpack, bringing only a handful of my favorite pullovers, jeans, and very few necessities. I still had most of my things back home, so there was no need to overpack.

I’d already set Thunder up for a little ice and snow when the temperatures had begun to drop more rapidly. We hadn’t had much snowfall yet, but looking her over now, I was quite positive she’d ride smoothly. My bike had never let me down before, and I was counting on her to get me safely to New London even if we’d encounter harsher conditions along the way.

She had to make it.

I was about to check on the new heated handles when the sound of heavy footsteps startled me. I turned fast. Cold wind blew in my face, and I jumped at the shadowy figure stepping closer. I looked up into a pair of familiar azure eyes and cursed silently.

Carter McCormack.

Of course, it was Carter Mc–freaking–Cormack. The universe must have it out for me.

He was all dressed up in startling whites and silvers, and fluffy brown fur lined his coat. A cascade of snowflakes danced around his perfect, diamond-shaped face, reluctantly making their way down to earth. Behind him, frosted trees danced to a wild breeze, and with his snow-white and furred coat he reminded me of a handsome ice prince right off the pages of a fairytale book.

“Hey, Remmy,” he said casually and stepped closer out of the shadows of the trees and into the yellow glow of the streetlamp.

“Carter? What are you doing here?” I tipped my head back, blinking snowflakes out of my eyes. Not only did he have a few inches on my five foot ten, he was also broader and stronger. Seriously though. What was he doing here? Carter was the last person I’d expected to run into. I was sure he’d been long gone by now like everybody else. Home. Surrounded by family, Christmas cheer and…his boyfriend. Ugh. I couldn’t stop the jealousy rocking through me every time I thought about him and Travis together.

Carter blinked. Then his eyes widened. “Whoa, Remmy! What happened to your hair?” He lifted a hand as if he was about to reach out but stopped halfway and dropped his arm to his side.

Oh boy. Carter was also the last person I wanted to see me with bright blue-green bangs plastered wildly across my forehead. My cheeks were heating fast, and I swallowed with difficulty. I shouldn’t have been this embarrassed; I was used to people staring at me because of my colorful choices when it came to clothes and accessories, but the result of my latest dye job had surprised even me. The turquoise came out pretty intense.

I shrugged, stammering, “I…Um…You know.” Self-consciously, I brushed my fingers through the thick flop of freshly dyed hair and shoved it out of my eyes, back under the helmet. The attempt was useless; my bangs were long, but not long enough to stay put when I wanted them to.

“Color happened,” I added, hopelessly mumbling a weak explanation when he kept gawking at me with those wide, brilliant blue eyes. I shivered, but it had nothing to do with the cold this time.

Purchase

NineStar Press | Amazon | Smashwords | Barnes & Noble

Meet the Author

Riina currently resides in Germany. She spent countless exciting days in the UK and US and lost her heart in Tokyo.

She would be thrilled if one day her stories could brighten someone’s day in the way those beautiful romances always lighten up her dull everyday life. Riina is looking forward to sharing many more stories with the world.

When she doesn’t daydream about boys in love, and isn’t glued to her Kindle, Riina loves to travel the world and explore the unknown.


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Monday, October 28, 2019

RELEASE BLITZ - Sons of Rome by Karrie Roman


Title: Sons of Rome
Author: Karrie Roman
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: October 28, 2019
Heat Level: 3 - Some Sex
Pairing: Male/Male
Length: 77300
Genre: Historical, LGBT, PTSD, soldiers, military, age gap, disabilities,
war, ancient Rome, virgins

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Synopsis

9CE Germania

Battle weary and fearless Centurion Drusus Tuscus has only three more years in the Roman Legions and then he can return home to the mother and young brother he was forced to leave behind seventeen summers ago. Drusus has suffered much during his years in the Legions: defeats, fallen comrades and excruciating wounds, but this time the stakes are so much higher. As he prepares to lead his warriors from the safety of their winter base, across the Rhine into the wilds of Germania, he awaits the arrival of new recruits to bolster his century. With these men he will face the ferocious
barbarian tribes, many still chafing under the yoke of Roman subjugation.

When his friend and Optio returns with the new men, two faces in the crowd change everything for Drusus. His brother, long lost to him and now a man, stands before him and he brings with him a
friend, a man named Caius. A man who stirs the long dead fires of Drusus’s heart. Two men, neither of whom Drusus is willing to lose to a barbarian blade.

As the campaign begins, whispers of betrayal and rebellion stoke a fear in Drusus, especially as his arrogant commander refuses to take heed of the warnings. As catastrophe stalks their footsteps Drusus must balance his duty to Rome with his love for Caius. He will give everything he has to save his beloved brother, and Caius, the man who has stolen his heart.

Two lives that mean more to Drusus than his own.


Excerpt

Sons of Rome
Karrie Roman © 2019
All Rights Reserved

Prologue
8 BCE

Of the many things he would miss about his life, Drusus could not decide which he would yearn for most—his mother’s sweet smiles or his baby brother’s happy babbling. Of course, he loved the land
around his family’s farm and would miss the beasts as well as the hard, honest work he toiled at day after day. But his family? Oh gods, how he would miss them.

Only two years ago, having barely reached his eighteenth summer, Drusus had become head of his family after the death of his father. Little Calpurnius, his brother, was barely two summers
into his life then, having come along as a great surprise to his parents after many years of failed attempts at a second child. With his loveable nature and adorable face, Calpurnius had easily become the light of the Tuscus family. The time between Calpurnius’s birth and the death of his father had been a happy time for Drusus’s family.

“Drusus, you take too much time,” his mother called.

Agrippina Tuscus was devastated by the loss of her husband, and now, so soon after, she was losing her eldest son to the Emperor’s legions. Drusus had been conscripted. They’d always known it a
possibility—more of a certainty—but, nonetheless, Drusus and his mother felt the blow when they finally came for him.

Drusus was not a coward, and he had little fear of battle. He dreaded leaving his mother and little Calpurnius though. They had slaves to tend the farm, and he knew each of them to be loyal. But there was no man of blood here, no Roman man left behind to defend what was left of his family should the need arise. And his family in danger scared him more than any battle could.

“I am taking the land into memory, Mother, so I will not forget what I am fighting for,” he answered as his mother came to stand beside him. Drusus was an unusually tall man who stood above most
but towered over his diminutive mother. She looked so fragile beside him, and yet he’d seen her turn into the lioness when the need arose, especially in the care of her children.

“You fight for Roma, son. For Roma’s glory and honour. For Emperor Augustus.”

“I fight for you and Calpurnius too. I fight to keep you safe. I fight for this.” He spread his arms wide and cast them over the panorama of their land: the rolling green hills heavy with wandering sheep, snow-peaked mountains far in the distance, cypress trees swaying gently in the breeze. The wildflowers were due to bloom soon, bringing with them their honeyed fragrance as well as the chirps of a thousand cicadas.

He’d miss it all. The aroma of Cassia’s bread as it baked on the hearth, and even the dry dirt that needed tilling for seeding—and got everywhere—would be missed. The melodious banter of slaves as they worked at the jobs he should be doing were it not for his conscription, the bleat of the sheep, the low calls of the cattle in the field: he’d miss everything. Wherever he went, he’d experience similar sights and sounds, but they wouldn’t be home.

“I would have you stay, Drusus.”

“I cannot, Mother. It is a citizen’s duty to fight with the legions for Roma.” He pressed a tender kiss into her hair, the scent of olive oil and farm life potent in the strands.

“I know, son. I speak selfishly. I will miss you though. It will be many years before you return. Little Cal will not know his brother.” For twenty years, his life would belong to Roma; he’d be nothing
more than another body in the cog keeping the Roman war machine turning.

Drusus saw his mother turn her gaze to where Calpurnius was playing with one of his kittens—exactly as he did—at the mention of his beloved brother. He watched the boy’s cherubic face light up in fits of giggles as the kitten rolled playfully all over him. With Cal’s white curls framing his pinked cheeks, he had the look of a god. All who met Calpurnius fell for his charms.

“Pray the gods I make it home before he is sent to the legions.” Drusus flinched at his thoughtless words, knowing they would cause his mother more pain.

As a true Roman woman, his mother ignored his insensitive words, stoically bearing Drusus’s departure instead. “Be safe, Drusus. And do not fear for those of us left behind.”

His mother wrapped her arms around him and held tight. Drusus mirrored her actions, doing his best not to think this may be the last time he held her—saw her. His sweet, kind mother.

He eventually pulled away and took her face in his hands, his gaze intent on her as he did his best to brand her image into his memory. Her dark curls and gentle eyes, the crinkles at the corner of
them from years of laughter, her sun-kissed skin. She was still a beauty, even though youth had passed her. He had hopes she would find a good man to marry her one day soon, but he knew his father held her heart even from the afterlife.

Calpurnius was playing with his kitten when Drusus took leave of his mother and went in search of him for their goodbyes. He wasn’t sure Cal comprehended what was happening. The little boy
understood Drusus was going away, but the idea of twenty years meant nothing to a child of four. Drusus wondered how long it might take for Cal to stop thinking every day maybe this would be the one his brother returned. How long before Cal forgot him entirely?

“Dru, kitten scratched my arm.” Calpurnius thrust his arm out to show him the offending wound as he approached. His little lip quivered as he looked at the tiny knots of blood left in the wake of the little cat’s sharp claws.

Drusus kneeled before his brother and scooped him into his arms. He kissed the scratch repeatedly until Calpurnius finally giggled and pushed him away.

“Kitten was only playing, Cal. He did not realise how sharp his claws are or how fragile your skin is.”

“You go now?”

“Yes, Cal. It is time for me to go.” He pressed a kiss into soft curls. “I want you to remember you are a Roman man. Earn your honour through your duty to Roma and your family. Treat others well,
Calpurnius, and you will make our father proud.”

Calpurnius nodded, clearly intuiting this was an important moment but not understanding why. Drusus seared his mind with this image, too, as his little brother watched him with large blue eyes
burning with trust and love.

“I will miss you, little one. Always remember somewhere in the world you have a brother who loves you.”

“You come back?” Calpurnius’s tiny hands rested on his cheeks, pushing them and pursing Drusus’s lips as Cal loved to do. Drusus was willing to give anything right then not to have to go. He understood his obligation to Roma, but the ache in his chest was making leaving to complete his duty so difficult. He’d be gone for so long.

“One day, Cal. Give your brother a kiss before I go,” he requested. Calpurnius dutifully delivered a sloppy kiss to each cheek before Drusus leaned forward and blew into the side of his neck, making
the noise that so amused the little ones. He set his brother on his feet and patted his bottom. “Off you go now, and find your kitten. Be good to our mother, Cal. Her heart aches today.”

Drusus watched him for a moment before he turned and walked away from everyone and everything he’d ever known without looking back. He feared if he did so his feet would stop carrying him to the
road he must now travel. He didn’t know which legion he’d be sent to or what part of the world he’d be shedding blood and tears in. All he knew was the ache in his own chest at leaving was so painful and crippling that surely no wound he might suffer in battle could ever be worse.


Purchase

NineStar Press | Amazon | Smashwords | Barnes & Noble | Kobo


Meet the Author

Karrie lives in Australia’s sunshine state with her husband and two sons, though she hates the sun with a passion. She dreams of one day living in the wettest and coldest habitable place she can find. She has been writing stories in her head for years but has finally managed to pull the words out of her head and share them with others. She spends her days trying to type her stories on the computer without disturbing her beloved cat Lu curled up on the keyboard. She probably reads far too much.

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Sunday, October 27, 2019

Conspiracy Theory (Harmarsson & Dempsey #1) by Elle Keaton



Goodreads Link




Blurb




Years of grueling police work have left Niall Hamarsson jaded and disillusioned with life…although it’s likely he’s been that way all along. The last straw lands when the DA refuses to try a case Niall worked for years to bring to justice. Within hours he finds himself heading to the only place he’s ever been able to call home—a place he knows he doesn’t belong.

Mat Dempsey returned to Piedras Island after his father’s death. These days he’s Island County’s sheriff. He’s happy enough, even if moving home from San Francisco effectively forced him back into the closet. Mat’s well-ordered universe collapses when a local’s body is discovered floating in the cold waters of Hidden Harbor’s marina. All hell breaks loose in the community, and accusations fly…all coinciding with Niall Hamarsson’s return.Niall and Mat have a history, and it’s not one Mat’s proud of. He owes Niall an apology, even if it means getting down on his knees. However, Mat’s first priority is investigating the murder before his community tears itself apart and he may have to ask the aloof Niall Hamarsson for help.

Push apart, pull together, yes or no... The chemistry crackles between them but will the two men be able to put aside their pasts and embrace a future?

Maybe.



Review 
My Rating - 4.5 Stars!

Conspiracy Theory, the first book in Elle Keaton's Hamarsson & Dempsey series, appears to be the start of another addicting series.

First, I need to say that the cover doesn't match the storyline. This is not a tough guy story at all. This is a romantic suspense at it's finest.

In this slow burn romance, Niall quits his old life and returns to his small town. There he's reunited with his sort of ex, Matt, with whom he left off on bad terms. 

What follows is a whole lot of mystery, as they work together to find out what's going on in their town. There's a murder to solve, strange animal sightings, and more. The reader is kept intrigued and guessing throughout.

Despite there being so much happening, the characters are developed enough to allow the reader to get a good sense of them, as well as their backstories. There's a good mystery, with great flow, and a solid pace. This is definitely an intriguing story.

The setting is that of a small island town, and the townspeople add greatly to the charm, and will hopefully lead to a fantastic series.

Conspiracy Theory is perfect for anyone who's looking for a good romantic suspense. Elle Keaton expertly combines a mystery with a slow burn, second chance romance. I am excited to see what else develops for Niall and Matt in the future.



PRE ORDER BLITZ - Nice Guys Don't Win (The Boys #2) by Micalea Smeltzer

Title: Nice Guys Don't Win Series: The Boys #2 Author: Micalea Smeltzer Genre: New Adult College Romance Release Date: May 19, 20...