Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Review+New Release: The New Guy by Sarina Bowen


My name is Hudson Newgate, but my teammates call me New Guy.

That was my nickname in Chicago, too. And Vancouver. That’s what happens when you keep getting traded. Brooklyn is my last chance, especially after my poor performance last season.

But I can make this work. The new guy knows to keep his head down and shoot the puck. The new guy puts the game first.

What he doesn’t do is hook up with the other new guy—a hot athletic trainer who lives in my building. Gavin needs this job with my team. He’s a single dad with responsibilities.

We can’t be a couple. My arrogant agent–who’s also my father–will lose his mind if I’m dating a dude. And my team needs me to score goals, not whip up a media circus.

Too bad Gavin and I are terrible at resisting each other…

Amazon: https://geni.us/New-Guy-Amzn
Apple Books: https://geni.us/New-Guy-Appl
Kobo: https://geni.us/New-Guy-Kobo
Nook: https://geni.us/New-Guy-BandN
Audio: https://geni.us/New-Guy-Audible

All links in one place: https://shor.by/NewGuy
ADD TO GOODREADS: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/63355404-the-new-guy

Christy's Review:

Sarina Bowen is one of the best when it comes to hockey romances and though this is the start to a new series for her (Hockey Guys) I was thrilled to see some of my Brooklyn guys in this one! 

Hudson Newgate is perpetually the ‘new guy’. He is constantly getting traded but he just wants to settle down and be able to live his life without the fear of being moved again. Maybe… just maybe Brooklyn will be the place this will happen. 

Gavin is a single dad and widower who just moved to Brooklyn for a job. He’s an athletic trainer and happens to be working for Brooklyn’s hockey team. But when these two meet in a bar they have no idea. 

Gavin and Hudson’s story was fantastic, though frustrating at times (Hudson’s dad… ugh) and I absolutely adored Jordan- Gavin’s daughter. Some authors do a really great job putting kids in books and this was one of those times. I’m not always a fan of the secret relationships, but by the end I was so happy with how this turned out! 

The New Guy is a strong start to Bowen’s newest hockey series and I for one can’t wait to read more! 

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Blog Tour: Best Served Hot by Amanda Elliot

Two restaurant critics learn their opposing tastes might make for a five-star relationship in the next foodie romantic comedy from the author of Sadie on a Plate.

By day, Julie Zimmerman works as an executive assistant. After hours, she’s @JulieZeeEatsNYC, a social media restaurant reviewer with over fifty thousand followers. As much as she loves her self-employed side gig, what Julie really wants is to be a critic at a major newspaper, like the New York Scroll. The only thing worse than the Scroll’s rejection of her application is the fact that smarmy, social-media-averse society boy Bennett Richard Macalester Wright snagged her dream job.
While at the Central Park Food Festival, Julie confronts the annoyingly handsome Bennett about his outdated opinions on social media and posts the resulting video footage. Julie's follower count soars—and so does the Scroll’s. Julie and Bennett grudgingly agree to partner up for a few reviews to further their buzz. Online buzz, obviously.
Over tapas, burgers, and more, Julie and Bennett connect over their shared love of food. But when the competitive fire between them turns extra
spicy, they'll have to decide how much heat their relationship can take.


Amanda Elliot is the author of several young adult and middle grade books as Amanda Panitch. She lives in New York City, where she owns way too many cookbooks for her tiny kitchen.

Christy's Review: 

Last year I read Sadie on a Plate, which was Amanda Elliot’s debut novel, and I was so impressed. I was excited to jump into her sophomore novel, Best Served Hot when given the chance. I love books with food in them, and this was another great read by this author. 

Julie is a food critic/influencer who would love to make it her full time job. She has aspirations to do just that. She applies to be a critic for ‘The Scroll’. It would be the dream for her. But Bennett Richard Macalester Wright is the guy that gets the job over her. The guy with connections, of course. When she runs into Bennett at a food festival, she confronts him. 

Julie may know who Bennett is, but Bennett doesn’t know who Julie is. Their banter was great and I loved watching them get to know each other. It’s very much more of a rivals turned friends to lovers story. I loved seeing them try new things together and even though this wasn’t super heavy on the romance, I enjoyed watching them start to fall. The conflict was fairly predictable, but I was happy it was resolved quickly and enjoyed the end of the book!


New York Scroll names new restaurant critic, Bennett Richard Macalester Wright.

Suddenly none of the food looked all that appetizing anymore.

"What is it?" asked Alice.

I sat back down with a thump. "I didn't get it," I said dully. And it wasn't like I'd expected them to read my passionate cover letter and resume and social media stats and immediately roll out the heirloom-tomato-red carpet. But they hadn't even bothered sending me a rejection email. Or any kind of acknowledgment at all. Maybe my application had been one of a million, even though the job hadn't been listed online for the general peasantry to apply for (I'd been tipped off about the opening through an email my boss had gotten and I'd read).

Or maybe they hadn't taken my resume seriously. Laughed about it in the office. Who does this girl think she is? She thinks some followers and some videos make her suited for us? The New York Scroll had never hired a critic who wasn't a white dude over fifty. They had social media, of course, but they still published trend pieces where they gaped at it and how it worked like it was a zoo exhibit. And over here we have people—wait for it—actually getting their news on social media. Thank goodness the protective bars are here, or they might attack us. 

Not unlike my boss, come to think of it. I still didn't think he knew about my second "job," but I'd heard the way he snorted as he watched his daughters take selfies or the older one herd her kids into the perfect light for a family snap.

Alice made a sympathetic mmm in response. "Who'd they name? Is it at least someone good?"

The name sounded vaguely familiar, but I was already frantically googling to learn more, leaving the food to cool before us. "He went to Dartmouth," I reported. Which, if I judged by the alumni I knew—my boss and his daughters—was stereotypically rich and fratty. "And he played on the squash team." Which was basically code for "has an enormous trust fund." I scowled down at my screen. "Hobbies include boating and collecting ancient coins." 

Bennett Richard Macalester Wright had almost certainly never misbudgeted and run out of food money his freshman year of college and had to subsist on ramen and scrounged-up free pizza from various club meetings to get by. 

"And then it looks like he was a food reporter at the Times for the last five years," I said. I scrolled through a few of his past headlines. A profile on a chef semi-famous for his cooking and very famous for his string of ever-younger actress wives. A report on why high-end restaurants were trending toward smaller but more expensive wine lists. A few reviews of pricey restaurants—it looked like he'd filled in for their regular critic while she was out on maternity leave.

"At least he seems like he's qualified," Alice said. I scowled at her. I didn't want to hear that he was qualified. I wanted to hear that he sucked and that they should've hired me. But I didn't say that. I continued my googling, but turned up nothing except dead ends. Like most major food reviewers, he'd clearly done his best to take down as much as he possibly could about himself, especially photographs. No serious food reviewer wanted to tip off a restaurant that they were there, since that might lead the owner or the kitchen to offer them special treatment that would bias their review. It was why I never made a reservation under my own name, though I couldn't do much about my face. Sometimes, if I got recognized on one visit, I'd go back with a wig or glasses the next time.

"Excuse me, ladies?" Our waiter smiled down on us. "How are we doing?"

"Not great, but the food is delicious," I told him. 

His smile wavered, not quite sure what to do with that. "Would you like anything more to drink? We have some lovely wines on offer tonight."

"No thanks," Alice said. "She doesn't like wine."

"Alice!" I hissed. Which was always fun. Alice had a particularly hissable name. 

The waiter nodded and went off to bring our check. Alice turned to me, blinking. "What?"

"We've had this discussion before," I said. "Don't tell anyone I don't like wine."

"But you don't like wine," Alice said. 

It was true. Wine tasted like literal sour grapes to me, whether it was the cheap boxed stuff our roommates used to bring home in college or the ultra-fancy kind my boss gave me last year for the holidays. It literally made my lips pucker and my cheeks suck in. I'd never been able to understand why people actually enjoyed drinking it.

But my followers wouldn't agree. Again, they were mostly young women around my age or a bit older. There was a whole meme industry around wine. The wine moms. Giant wine glasses. Social media love turned on a dime. Not like I was hiding it hardcore. It was just that I'd rather the truth not be known, because I didn't want to do anything that might alienate me from my followers. Sometimes being loved on social media meant being loved as someone who isn't really you.

"You know who I bet loooves wine?" I said, rather than continuing my lecture. "Bennett…" I couldn't remember his two middle names, so I made some up. "Bennett Rigatoni Mushroom Wright." Alice giggled, which made me go on. "The Scroll always includes a wine list in their reviews, and the wines they choose always cost a fortune."


Excerpted from Best Served Hot by Amanda Elliot Copyright © 2023 by Amanda Elliot. Excerpted by permission of Berkley. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

End of Story by Kylie Scott Blog Tour


Fans of bestsellers like In Five Years will fall for this unexpected love story about a woman and her contractor who discover a divorce decree with their names on it … dated ten years in the future.

When Susie inherits a charming fixer-upper from her aunt, she’s excited to start living her best HGTV-life. But when she opens the door to find that her contractor is none other than her ex’s (very good looking) best friend Lars—the same man who witnessed their humiliating public break-up 6 months ago—she isn’t exactly eager to have him around. But, beggars can't be choosers and the sooner the repairs are done, the sooner she can get back to grudgingly accepting the single life.

Things go from awkward to unbelievable when Lars knocks down a bedroom wall and finds a divorce certificate dated ten years from now…with both their names on it. It couldn’t possibly be real...could it? As Susie and Lars try to unravel the document’s origins, the impossibility of a spark between them suddenly doesn’t seem so far-fetched. But is any kind of relationship between them doomed before it’s ever begun?

Christy's Review: 

End of Story felt different than Kylie Scott’s books I’ve read before, but it was enjoyable. It was a fun read, and kept my attention throughout the book. It only took me a day or two to finish it.

Susie is fixing up a home that was left to her by her aunt that passed away and hires her ex-boyfriend’s best friend. They end up finding something in the wall of the house that makes them more connected. Lars is the best friend. He’s always liked Susie, but now things are different between them.

Lars and Susie spend a lot of time together. They become closer friends and of course it leads to more, but things are complicated. I adored Lars. He was such a great guy and even though it took him a minute to come around his friend, I get it. Susie was great too. She was a fun character and I loved watching her let her guard down with Lars.

I love a good friends to lovers romance. The little things in this book made it special, Lars and Susie sharing their food (adorable) and the caretaking scenes. It did have something a little odd where you have to suspend your belief a bit, but if you can get past it or you like those elements in a book definitely give this one a try. 

Author Bio: 

Kylie Scott is the New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal and international bestselling author of 19 novels including the Stage Dive series, the Dive Bar series, the Larsen Brothers series, and West Hollywood series. Her most recent release, Pause, debuted on the USA Today bestseller list. Her books have been translated into fourteen languages, and she has sold over 2 million copies worldwide.

BBU - Coming Soon