Monday, April 22, 2019

Spotlight: The Mister by E L James


Beautiful and mysterious she possessed little more. . .

Than a dangerous and troublesome past.

THE MISTER, the highly anticipated new love story from #1 New York Times bestseller E L James is available now!

the mister hi res 1.22.19

London, 2019. Life has been easy for Maxim Trevelyan. With his good looks, aristocratic connections, and money, he’s never had to work and he’s rarely slept alone. But all that changes when tragedy strikes and Maxim inherits his family’s noble title, wealth, and estates, and all the responsibility that entails. It’s a role he’s not prepared for and one that he struggles to face.

But his biggest challenge is fighting his desire for an unexpected, enigmatic young woman who’s recently arrived in England, possessing little more than a dangerous and troublesome past. Reticent, beautiful, and musically gifted, she’s an alluring mystery, and Maxim’s longing for her deepens into a passion that he’s never experienced and dares not name. Just who is Alessia Demachi? And can Maxim protect her from the malevolence that threatens her? And what will she do when she learns that he’s been hiding secrets of his own?

From the heart of London through wild, rural Cornwall to the bleak, forbidding beauty of the Balkans, The Mister is a roller-coaster ride of danger and desire that leaves the reader breathless to the very last page.


Download your copy today:
Amazon Worldwide:
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E L James is an incurable romantic and a self-confessed fangirl. After twenty-five years of working in television, she decided to pursue a childhood dream and write stories that readers could take to their hearts. The result was the controversial and sensuous romance Fifty Shades of Grey and its two sequels, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed. In 2015, she published the #1 bestseller Grey, the story of Fifty Shades of Grey from the perspective of Christian Grey, and in 2017, the chart-topping Darker, the second part of the Fifty Shades story from Christian’s point of view. Her books have been published in fifty languages and have sold more than 150 million copies worldwide. 

E L James has been recognized as one of Time magazine's "Most Influential People in the World” and Publishers Weekly’s "Person of the Year.” Fifty Shades of Grey stayed on The New York Times Best Seller List for 133 consecutive weeks. Fifty Shades Freed won the Goodreads Choice Award (2012), and Fifty Shades of Grey was selected as one of the 100 Great Reads, as voted by readers, in PBS’s The Great American Read (2018). Darker has been long-listed for the 2019 International DUBLIN Literary Award.

She co-produced for Universal Studios the Fifty Shades movies, which made more than a billion dollars at the box office. The third installment, Fifty Shades Freed, won the People’s Choice Award for Drama in 2018. E L James is blessed with two wonderful sons and lives with her husband, the novelist and screenwriter Niall Leonard, and their West Highland terriers in the leafy suburbs of West London. 

E.L. James 

For more information about E L James, visit:

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Sunday, April 21, 2019

Spotlight, Giveaway: Colel - The Mistress of Bees by Mimi Jean Pamfiloff

Colel, The Mistress of Bees
(Stand Alone)
Mimi Jean Pamfiloff


From New York Times Bestseller Mimi Jean Pamfiloff comes a Standalone, Romantic Comedy a la Paranormal.

Book #5, the Immortal Matchmakers, Inc., Series

This book contains foul language, gratuitous sex against a truck, outrageously rude immortal warriors in leather pants, snow, pigheaded gods, a sexually frustrated goddess, a very hot and hunky florist guy with a bad attitude and a big secret, Brutus bubble baths, a sneaky invisible unicorn, unrequited love, bees, bees, and more bees, and chocolates.


Colel, the Goddess of Bees, has been looking for Mr. Right for over seventy thousand years. So when she meets the hunky owner of a small-town flower shop and explodes with flutters and tingles, she’s almost certain that he’s the one.

Only two problems: her tiny black-and-yellow army suddenly won’t let her anywhere near him, and…is that a freaking epinephrine pen in the fridge? “Dear gods! He’s allergic to bees? Say it isn’t so.”

If simply dating the guy will kill him, how will she ever know for sure if he’s really the one?

Colel has a solution, but it’s drastic. Even for her. And what if he says no?


About the Author

MIMI JEAN PAMFILOFF is a USA Today and New York Times bestselling romance author with over a million books sold worldwide. Although she obtained her MBA and worked for more than fifteen years in the corporate world, she believes that it’s never too late to come out of the romance closet and follow your dream. Mimi lives with her Latin Lover hubby, two pirates-in-training (their boys), and the rat terrier duo, Snowflake and Mini Me, in Arizona. She hopes to make you laugh when you need it most and continues to pray daily that leather pants will make a big comeback for men.
Sign up for Mimi’s mailing list for giveaways and new release news!

Other books in the series

Immortal Matchmakers, Inc. (Book #1)


Tommaso (Book #2)


God of Wine (Book #3)


Goddess of Forgetfulness (Book #4)



Saturday, April 20, 2019

Book Review: Trust Me (Lies and Misdirection #4) by K. J. McGillick

Trust Me 
(Lies and Misdirection #4)
by K. J. McGillick

Amazon US / UK / AU / CA  

Sex. Power. Murder.

Dr. Gabriel Blackwell and his wife Sandra Blake have it all. He’s a brilliant thoracic surgeon. She’s a high-powered attorney with family money. Their lives are as loving as they are glamorous.

Or are they?

When a nurse Dr. Blackwell works with is brutally murdered, the questions fly. Who would want to kill this woman and why? When an autopsy reveals the woman was pregnant, all signs point to Dr. Blackwell. Just what was her relationship with him?

Whispers about a scandalous sex club surface. How many other lovers are there? Are any of them safe? How far would he go to protect his reputation?

Tragedy strikes again as Sandra Blake is found dead floating in their pool. Dr. Blackwell now finds himself on trial for two murders. Facing life in prison, Dr. Blackwell will grasp at any straw to preserve his freedom.

Any straw.

Is anyone innocent? Is anyone safe?

My Rating:

Favorite Quotes:

The practice of law came down to which lawyer was a better actor, whose clients lied with more finesse, and who could put out the fires the quickest when your case exploded in real time.

At some point, I would have to ask Mary if I could look inside her bottomless bag. And maybe even set up a duplicate one for me. Weapons and candy, every girl’s dream.

These are times I wish I could get the hang of meditation or maybe comfortable enough to keep a bottle of Jack Daniel’s in my drawer.

I’m always disappointed when a liar’s pants didn’t catch on fire.

My Review:

I am shocked to realize I had started feeling sorry for these surprisingly likable lawyers. I will admit to considering their general ilk a necessary evil in navigating the justice system (emphasis on the evil), and rate close to loan sharks in my level of esteem. However, this boutique law firm of feisty ladies set out to be of a different sort as actually had principles and standards about whom they chose to represent. Although determining a client’s guilt or culpability can be a difficult judgment call, one made even more complicated when unknowingly dealing with sociopaths. And unfortunately, for them, they seem to have landed in a nest of vipers with bizarre happenings quickly mushrooming from bad to worse.

The storylines were complex yet interesting, twisty, and intriguing. As with her previous books in the series, Ms. McGillick shrewdly tucks and folds levity and ironic wit in among the tension and suspense to balance out the strain of uncertainty and distressing revelations. My favorite cunning and spry octogenarian, Mary, was back with her infamous handbag, stylized weapons, and wry wit. New members were added to the legal team who were required to hit the ground running with the sudden unexpected influx of complicated cases. The new attorneys couldn’t have been more dissimilar; I enjoyed them both but was totally enamored with the rigid and robotic Mr. Martin’s computer-like brain and cataloging of obscure information, he was a well-dressed and well-seasoned Sheldon Cooper. The most compelling characters were the various nightmarish clients and their questionable lifestyles, as well as their victims. I am gleefully looking forward to the next book in the series as Ms. McGillick promised to provide more of the oddly peculiar Mr. Martin.

Empress DJ

About The Author
K. J. McGillick was born in New York and once she started to walk she never stopped running. But that's what New Yorker's do. Right? A Registered Nurse, a lawyer now author.

As she evolved so did her career choices. After completing her graduate degree in nursing, she spent many years in the university setting sharing the dreams of the enthusiastic nursing students she taught. After twenty rewarding years in the medical field, she attended law school and has spent the last twenty-four years as an attorney helping people navigate the turbulent waters of the legal system. Not an easy feat. And now? Now she is sharing the characters she loves with readers hoping they are intrigued by her twisting and turning plots and entertained by her writing 

Social Media Links – 

Friday, April 19, 2019

Book Review: The Worth of a Penny by Jess B. Moore

The Worth of a Penny
 by Jess B. Moore

Sweetheart Penelope Davies is what her daddy calls gullible, right after he told her she was stupid and worthless. With her cheek red from being slapped by him, and her heart trampled by a worthless boyfriend, she packs up and follows her half-brother to Fox River, North Carolina, in need of a fresh start.

Dominic MacKenna is the youngest of five brothers, the friendly one with a killer smile and easy laugh. His brothers are all grown up, and one by one they’re flying the nest, leaving him out of sorts and unsure of his place. Who is he if not the youngest MacKenna?

Penny falls in with the MacKenna brothers, welcomed in as family, and offered the kind of love and support she never knew existed. With a new job and a lot of determination, she is finding out what she’s capable of. The last thing she needs now is to fall in love with the most notorious flirt in town. 

Dominic falls for the sweet strong girl with a penchant for random facts and quirky homemade dresses. All he wants is to show Penny how wonderful she is, how smart and funny, and how desired and loved—even if he has to do it as her friend.

My Rating:

Favorite Quotes:

Are they monitoring your texts now? Should I send a shot of my nipples? My gentleman sausage? Would it get you fired?

“I can show you all the places girls have professed their love for Dominic.” “Oh, yes, please show Penny all the graffiti. Way to keep it classy, Magnolia.” I deadpanned, shifting my weight, and wishing for an end to this conversation. “Don't’ Magnolia me, Dominic Oswald MacKenna.” I sucked in a breath. Maggie middle named me. In front of Penny.

It’s all my sisters do, and all the women working here. Like a sickness. I swear, if and when I meet a woman who doesn’t gossip, I’ll know she’s the one.

My Review:

There has to be some type of bewitchment or inexplicable magic that Jess B. Moore sprinkles on her stories as I am immediately sucked into her characters’ vortex whenever I pick up her books. This is my third exposure to her craftily written and heart squeezing tales, and this delightful phenomenon has occurred each and every time. Her word voodoo is strong! I adored these quirky, irresistible, and complex characters. Ms. Moore certainly has a knack for casting her tales with uniquely compelling and slighted dented yet highly endearing individuals. Penny and Dominic were both adorable, highly appealing, and gentle souls who were well worth knowing. I cannot wait to see what Ms. Moore conjures next for Fox River.

Empress DJ

About The Author

Jess B. Moore is a writer of love stories. When she’s not writing, she’s busy mothering her talented and stubborn children, reading obscene numbers of books, and knitting scarves she’ll likely never finish. 

Jess lives in small-town North Carolina with her bluegrass obsessed family. She takes too many pictures of her cats, thinking the Internet loves them as much as she does. She is a firm believer of swapping stories over coffee or wine, and that there should always be dark chocolate involved. 

Her novels combine her interests in family, music, and small towns into thoughtful tales of growing up and falling in love. 

Social Media Links – 

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Book Review: One Last Summer by Victoria Connelly

One Last Summer
by Victoria Connelly

Amazon US / UK / AU / CA / B&N

They have the whole summer ahead of them. Is it enough to rekindle the friendship they once shared?

Harriet Greenleaf dreams of spending the summer in a beautiful ancient priory on the Somerset coast with her two best friends—but her dream is bittersweet. On the one hand, it’s a chance to reconnect three lives that have drifted apart; on the other, she has a devastating secret to share that will change everything between them forever.

First to arrive is Audrey—the workaholic who’s heading for a heart attack unless she slows down and makes time for herself. Then Lisa, the happy-go-lucky flirt who’s always struggled to commit to anyone—or anything. Ever the optimist, can Harriet remind them of the joy in their lives and the importance of celebrating good friendship before it’s gone?

Through the highs and lows of a long, glorious summer, these three women will rediscover what it means to be there for each other—before they face the hardest of goodbyes.

My Rating:

Favorite Quotes:

He was the head of the maths department and she’d told him that she’d always hated figures and he’d made some wisecrack about liking hers.

Harrie’s diagnosis. D-Day, she called it, and now her life seemed to be divided between everything that had happened before D-Day and everything that had happened after.

Kindness. That was the trait she’d come to value most in recent years. You realised that as soon as you became ill. Kindness trumped absolutely everything else.

… the likelihood was that she wasn’t going to see her birthday. How strange a thought was that – to know that you have seen your last birthday?

A moment of stillness and wordlessness passed between the two women. It was a strange feeling because Harrie didn’t feel any sort of closeness to Mrs Ryder, but this confession – this sharing of intimate pain – now connected them. Harrie had found that her journey with cancer had linked her to so many people in this way – people she probably would never have spoken to.

Lisa, aligning my chakras and teaching me how to breathe through one nostril isn’t going to save me… This thing’s got me good and proper.

They say laughter is the best medicine… but I don’t think it’s going to cure what I’ve got.

I know he’s the father of my daughter and there’s a part of me that will always love him, but he’s moved on now. He’s married to Lizzie, who has big hair and wears tight tops. So, you see my health isn’t his concern anymore.

My Review:

Knowing her days were numbered, Harriet, Harrie for short, splashed out a fortune to provide one last hurrah to host a peaceful summer vacation with her two oldest and dearest friends of twenty years, who are unaware of her dire health issues. This wasn’t a highly eventful or active story but a slowly evolving character-based study of coming to grips with mortality, as well as how that was processed and dealt with within complicated relationships and personalities. Each woman possessed a distinct and complex identity with vastly different temperaments, life goals, and levels of accomplishment, yet they cared about each other and fussed like siblings.

The premise was relevant and thought-provoking while the writing was emotive and thoughtfully insightful with recurrent themes of interpersonal tension, poignancy, melancholia, angst, and wry humor. The main characters were well fleshed out, although the character of Audrey was the most difficult for me to warm up to as she was the type of person I generally make an effort to avoid in real-life; she was stubborn, bristling with self-importance, driven, highly opinionated, and abrupt. I actually found the local workers to be the most compelling and interesting and greatly enjoyed their addition and contributions to the story.

New additions to my Brit Word list include plimsolls – which are rubber-soled canvas shoes; slap-up – a large and sumptuous meal; and supply teaching – what most Americans know as substitute teaching.

Empress DJ

About The Author

Victoria Connelly studied English literature at Worcester University, got married in a medieval castle in the Yorkshire Dales and now lives in rural Suffolk with her artist husband, a young springer spaniel and a flock of ex-battery hens.

She is the author of two bestselling series, Austen Addicts and The Book Lovers, as well as many other novels and novellas. Her first published novel, Flights of Angels, was made into a film in 2008 by Ziegler Films in Germany. The Runaway Actress was shortlisted for the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Romantic Comedy Novel award.

Ms. Connelly loves books, films, walking, historic buildings and animals. If she isn’t at her keyboard writing, she can usually be found in her garden, with either a trowel in her hand or a hen on her lap.

Her website is, and readers can follow her on Twitter @VictoriaDarcy and on Instagram @VictoriaConnellyAuthor.

Social Media Links 

Twitter: @VictoriaDarcy
Instagram: @VictoriaConnellyAuthor

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Book Review: Amazing Grace by Kim Nash

Amazing Grace
by Kim Nash

Amazon US / UK / AU / CA 
Kobo / Apple

She’s taking her life back, one step at a time…

Grace thought she had it all. Living in the beautiful village of Little Ollington, along with headteacher husband Mark and gorgeous son, Archie, she devoted herself to being the perfect mum and the perfect wife, her little family giving her everything she ever wanted.

Until that fateful day when she walked in on Mark kissing his secretary - and her perfect life fell apart.

Now she's a single mum to Archie, trying to find her way in life and keep things together for his sake. Saturday nights consist of a Chinese takeaway eaten in front of the TV clad in greying pajamas, and she can’t remember the last time she had a kiss from anyone aside from her dog, Becks…

Grace’s life needs a shake up – fast. So when gorgeous gardener Vinnie turns up on her doorstep, his twinkling eyes suggesting that he might be interested in more than just her conifers, she might just have found the answer to her prayers. But as Grace falls deeper for Vinnie, ten-year-old Archie fears that his mum finding love means she’ll never reconcile with the dad he loves.

So when ex-husband Mark begs her for another chance, telling her he’s changed from the man that broke her heart, Grace finds herself with an impossible dilemma. Should she take back Mark and reunite the family that Archie loves? Or risk it all for a new chance of happiness?

A funny, feel-good romance about finding your own path and changing your life for the better – readers of Cathy Bramley, Jill Mansell, and Josie Silver will love this uplifting read.

My Rating:

Favorite Quotes:

I’ve been on eighty-seven dates so far but have still not yet found the girl of my dreams. There’s been something wrong with every single one of them.

Derek, here’s a tip from me. On your next first date, treat your lady like a princess. Turn up on time, be nice to her, buy her a drink, ask her about herself and don’t talk about poo.

To be honest, even if David Beckham woke me up saying he wanted to roger me senseless in the middle of the night, I’d slap him and say, David, don’t bloody wake me up.

He treats me with kindness and respect, something that you don’t appear to have for anyone, not even your own family. And I suggest that if you ever want people to like you, go look those words up in a dictionary.

My Review:

Amazing Grace was a fun and lively read and the publishing debut for this talented weaver of words. I just love finding new authors to fangirl! The storylines were creative and eventful, yet easy to follow and fairly well-balanced in emotional tone between periods of angsty indecision and Grace’s gradual personal transformation as she waded through tense encounters and confusing exchanges with her ex-husband, rueful reminiscences of her mother, parenting issues, a thrilling new love interest, and other-worldly influences; until she finally found her own voice and regained her long-lost sparkle.

Ms. Nash’s writing was pleasantly engaging and evocatively detailed with shimmers of delightful humor that occasionally found me barking out a laugh. She has definitely earned a spot on my Ones to Watch For list. And an interesting addition to my Brit Word List was “big girl’s blouse,” which the Urban Dictionary defined as British slang for “a wimpy, emasculated and weak man. In particular, one who complains immoderately.” Hmm, I used to work with one of those… Retirement is oh, so, sweeet!

Empress DJ

About The Author

Kim Nash lives in Staffordshire with son Ollie and English Setter Roni, is PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture and is a book blogger at

Kim won the Romantic Novelists Association's Media Star of the Year in 2016, which she still can't quite believe. She is now quite delighted to be a member of the RNA. 

When she's not working or writing, Kim can be found walking her dog, reading, standing on the sidelines of a football pitch cheering on Ollie and binge watching box sets on the TV. She's also quite partial to a spa day and a gin and tonic (not at the same time!) Kim also runs a book club in Cannock, Staffs. 

Amazing Grace is her debut novel with Hera Books and will be out on 10th April 2019

Connect with Kim on Social Media

Twitter: (@KimTheBookworm)
Instagram: @Kim_the_bookworm

Book Review: Hate Bale by Stephanie Dagg

Hate Bale
by Stephanie Dagg

Grumbling guests and escaping piglets are precisely what Martha doesn’t need. She’s already struggling to run a holiday cottage and a rather large smallholding single-handedly. Since her husband Mark died, three years ago, her rural property in France, beautiful as it is, has become an increasingly heavy millstone around her neck.

So whilst she’s horrified to stumble across a corpse at the local farm supplies shop, it does at least distract her from her own woes. Best friend Lottie, the cheese to Martha’s chalk, swoops in to offer moral support and encourages Martha to join her in some unofficial sleuthing. Meanwhile, police officer Philippe Prudhomme, a former fellow chess-player of Mark’s, undertakes a rather more professional investigation.

However, despite everyone’s efforts, the killer remains at large. And when more bodies (one and a bit, to be precise) come Martha’s way, it definitely feels like he’s closing in on her…

There’s suspense, humour and excitement in this entertaining cosy mystery set in the French countryside.

My Rating:

Favorite Quotes:

French people spoke fast generally, but the added excitement of imparting misfortune that had occurred to someone else made them talk at breakneck speed.

‘Angxious’ messages, as Mark would have described them, being a mixture of concern-induced anger and anxiety.

“I sometimes wonder if she’s after my husband,” murmured Lottie, only half-joking, as Roger and Madame laughed heartily over a lame joke he’d cracked. “I think you’re safe. She’s got more facial hair than he has.” Martha couldn’t stop the uncharitable but true remark slipping out.

My Review:

This was my fourth exposure to Stephanie Dagg’s amusing prose. I always enjoy her wry humor and comfortable storytelling, regardless of the unusual conditions of the murder victims her main character of Martha seems destined to encounter in this pleasantly entertaining cozy mystery. Martha was a highly relatable and realistically drawn character whom I enjoyed getting to know. Adding to my reading pleasure, I also picked up a few new additions to my Brit word list with two having the same meaning - todger and John-Thomas are both slang for penis; and rosbif - which the Urban Dictionary defined as a derogatory term for a Brit by the French, “probably because of the enjoyment and pride the English take in their roast beef.”

Empress DJ

About The Author

I'm an English expat living in France, having moved here with my family in 2006 after fourteen years as an expat in Ireland. Taking on seventy-five acres with three lakes, two hovels and one cathedral-sized barn, not to mention an ever-increasing menagerie of animals, has made for exciting times. The current array of creatures ranges from alpacas to zebra finches, with pretty much everything in-between! Before we came to France all we had was a dog and two chickens, so it's been a steep learning curve.

I'm married to Chris and we have three bilingual TCKs (third culture kids) who are resilient and resourceful and generally wonderful.

I'm a traditionally-published author of many children's books and am now self-publishing too. As well as being an author, I’m also a part-time editor and, with Chris, manager of three carp fishing lakes. My hobbies are cycling, geocaching, knitting, and sewing.

Social Media Links