New and Notable Releases Week of August 27 Part One


Here are some new and notable releases for the week:

(If the widgets don’t load, please  hit your refresh button)


Blades of Winter by G T Almasi

Degrees of Wrong by Anna Scarlett

Cold Fire by Kate Elliott


Chosen by Sable Grace

Endgame by Ann Aguirre

Haunted by Jeanne C Stein


Fair Game by Taylor Keating

Soul Trade by Caitlin Kittredge

Immortally Yours by Angie Fox

Wrayth by Philippa Ballantine

Spellbound by Blake Charlton

Rise of Hope by Kaily Hart

Historical Romance

Loving Lady Marcia by Kieran Kramer

A Lady by Midnight by Tessa Dare

A Study in Seduction by Nina Rowan


The Ugly Duchess by Eloisa James

The Way to a Duke’s Heart by Caroline Linden

Lady Gone Bad by Sabine Starr

Tallie’s Hero by Sara Luck

Sins of a Virgin by Anna Randol

A Dangerous Liaison with Detective Lewis by Jillian Stone



Blame it on Texas by Christie Craig

Close Enough to Touch by Victoria Dahl

Desire the Night by Amanda Ashley

How to Lose a Demon in 10 Days by Saranna DeWylde

In the Line of Duty by Donna Alward

Last Vamp Standing by Kristin Miller


The Lovesick Cure by Pamela Morsi

What’s on your shopping list this week?

Review: Beautiful Lies by Jessica Warman


Title: Beautiful Lies

Author: Jessica Warman

Publisher:  Walker

Beautiful Lies DIGITAL

May Contain Spoilers

From Amazon:


Rachel and Alice are an extremely rare kind of identical twins-so identical that even their aunt and uncle, whom they’ve lived with since their parents passed away, can’t tell them apart. But the sisters are connected in a way that goes well beyond their surfaces: when one experiences pain, the other exhibits the exact same signs of distress. So when one twin mysteriously disappears, the other immediately knows something is wrong-especially when she starts experiencing serious physical traumas, despite the fact that nobody has touched her. As the search commences to find her sister, the twin left behind must rely on their intense bond to uncover the truth. But is there anyone around her she can trust, when everyone could be a suspect? And ultimately, can she even trust herself? Master storyteller Jessica Warman will keep readers guessing when everything they see-and everything they are told-suddenly becomes unreliable in this page-turning literary thriller.


Wow, this book left me reeling several times, as the painstakingly developed twists and turns began to unfold.  I don’t know how to review this without major spoilers, but I am going to try, so if I am vague, it’s so I don’t spoil any of the suspense.   I finished this yesterday, and I am still trying to decide how I feel about the book.  It was hard to put down, but because the author was keeping me on my toes and only revealing bits and pieces about Rachel and Alice, I didn’t feel that I ever got to know the twins.  I learned about their history, as life-changing events in their past were slowly picked apart, but I never felt that I got to know  them.  There was an emotional distance around them that I couldn’t breach.  I also hated the ending.  Hated it!  It is dark and brutal and unforgiving, and it made me uncomfortable and depressed.

Alice and Rachel are identical twins.  They also know when something happens to the other.  If one of them is injured, the other is as well.  They look so much alike that even their aunt and uncle can’t tell them apart.  Their parents were killed when they were young girls, and their mom’s sister and her husband stepped up and took them in.  There is a history of mental illness in the family, and because of her tenuous grip on reality, their aunt refused to allow their grandmother to have custody of them, even though the girls often spent time with their grandmother.  Due to their personality clashes, their mother and aunt hadn’t spoken to each other in years, and the girls hadn’t even met their new guardians.  After a rough adjustment, they settled into life in their new home, but they never felt  that they were part of their aunt and uncle’s family.

When one of the twins disappears, the other is frantic to find her sister.  One second, she felt her sister’s familiar presence, and the next, she was gone.  Like she had never existed.  The problem, Alice was a troublemaker, always finding herself on the bad side of a situation and forbidden to see her boyfriend because of his bad influence.  The adults in her life, including the police, are skeptical that Alice has been abducted, and they all think that she’s only run away.  She does this often, so nobody is in a hurry to try to find her.  They all expect her to come home in a day or so, because she always does.  Only this time, she doesn’t.

Beautiful Lies is an engrossing read, and it was very hard to step away from the suspense.  I almost turned down lunch at the Indian buffet so I could stay home and keep reading, and if you know me and how much I love food, you’ll understand what a big deal that thought was(my stomach did win out in the end).  I was always wondering what was real and what was a figment of the protagonist’s imagination.  Her grip on sanity was questionable, and it was difficult to tell whether she was seeing something that was really there, or whether she believed that something was there.  This back and forth between questioning her sanity and  taking everything at face value kept me turning the pages.  I had to know!  Was she nuts?  Had her sister really been abducted, or did she have something to do with her disappearance.  To add to the tangled web, both sisters kept secrets from the other, and some of those secrets were huge!  As each was unearthed, a very real and understandable sense of betrayal and hurt permeated the pages. 

I loved being off balance and not really knowing what was going on.  It is only the ending that keeps me feeling reserved about this book.  Though it is a fitting end, it is not easy to read, and it disturbed me.  I did not want the story to come to this end.  If you read the book, how did you feel about the conclusion?

Grade:  B/B-

Review copy provided by publisher

Interview with Robyn Thomas, Author of His Unexpected Family

I’m excited to have Robyn Thomas, author of His Unexpected Family, visiting the virtual offices this morning! Robyn’s book was recently released by Entangled Publishing, under their Indulgence line.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Good morning, Robyn! Thanks for stopping by!

[Robyn Thomas] Thank you so much for inviting me to stop by for an interview. I’m thrilled to be here.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.

[Robyn Thomas] Wife, mother of two, writer, keen observer, introvert, cake eater, movie watcher, sassy sister, caffeine addict, Melbourne girl.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about His Unexpected Family?

[Robyn Thomas] It’s a story of redemption, acceptance and starting over. My commitment phobic hero, Cole Matthews, feels responsible for the deaths of his brother and his best friend. They perished in an avalanche, and he should have been there with them, filming their expedition. He’s haunted by the thought that his life wasn’t the one worth saving, and he’s searching for a way to make it up to them. He’ll do anything. Almost anything. Discovering that his best friend has a baby daughter changes everything in an instant, but he doesn’t do families, emotions, or relationships.

Ren Jamieson lost her mountaineering husband in an avalanche. Now she has a tiny baby, crippling debts, and a housing crisis… and the only person willing to help her is another extreme sportsman. Her late-husband’s best friend, Cole, is half dream/half nightmare. The line between him and her late husband blurs dangerously, and often. It’d be so easy, and so wrong to fall for him. And regardless of whether she and Cole remain friends or become lovers he WILL let her down. It’s a certainty. She’s already made the mistake of relying on an adventurer, and just look where that got her. However tempting Cole is, she can’t afford another lapse in judgment.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did you come up with the concept and the characters for the story?

[Robyn Thomas] I watched Touching the Void and thought that the filming of it must’ve involved considerable risks. I wondered what sort of person would film an expedition like that, and how they’d differ from the mountaineers they were filming. What if they were a team and had worked together before? What if being delayed for a few days saved the life of the cameraman while both his brother and his best friend perished? I had a flawed hero on my hands, and I knew straight away that his penchant for extreme sports was going to be a problem.

I made Cole wait for his story until Ren “arrived” in my mind, already named, recently widowed and with a newborn daughter. I was surprised to find that her life had been turned inside out by the same tragedy that had ruined Cole’s. It gave the two of them common ground and opposing perspectives and a whole world of guilt to navigate through.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Cole?

[Robyn Thomas] Sexy, tortured, determined.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are three things Ren would never have in her purse?

[Robyn Thomas] Condoms, a flick knife and a hip flask Smile

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Ren had a theme song, what would it be?

[Robyn Thomas] Fighter – Christina Aguilera, or maybe I will survive – Gloria Gaynor.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?

[Robyn Thomas] Movies, listening to music, people watching, and window shopping. Reading also helps to fill the creative well, but it’s not the main source.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?

[Robyn Thomas] The determination to do it, a computer or pen and paper, and a drink (preferably coffee although water or the occasional wine work just as well.)

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?

[Robyn Thomas] It’s difficult to single one out, but I recently re-read Till We Meet Again by Judith Krantz.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?

[Robyn Thomas] The Folk of The Faraway Tree – Enid Blyton. Those books are such a great source of inspiration when you’re at the right age to get swept up in them.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?

[Robyn Thomas] Spend time with my family, go to cafes, cook, watch movies, browse at markets and visit galleries.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[Robyn Thomas] I’m online here or follow me on Twitter and Goodreads

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you!

You can purchase His Unexpected Family from your favorite etailer or by clicking the widget below.


About Robyn Thomas

Robyn is a cheesecake connoisseur, caffeine addict, and mother of two boys. Happily married, she lives in Melbourne, Australia. Writing romance helps her balance the effects of living in an all-male household. Robyn loves movies, art glass and browsing in quirky gift shops.

Author Website ? Twitter ? Goodreads

About the publisher

Indulgence is an innovative line of category romance novels, priced at $2.99 and sold digitally only. Indulgence features fresh voices and realistic stories that reflect how women live and love in the new millennium. Whether funny, mysterious, dramatic, snarky, sexy, or heartfelt, these stories are active, fast-paced, and dialogue-heavy. Be bold. Be daring. Get out of the box.

For more information, please visit