HOLD ME CLOSE

HOLD ME CLOSE                                               SHANNYN SCHROEDER

Leave it to the O'Learys to make romance a family affair… 

Maggie O'Leary is finally coming home to Chicago. After more than a year in Ireland, she's ready to make a plan for her future. But first, she'll have to confront the tragedy that scarred her so deeply. Asking for a job in the family bar is the first step, and it's one her family isn't entirely happy about. At least Shane Callahan, her best friend in the world, is behind her a hundred percent. He's also a hundred percent more lovable than she remembered… 

Shane is determined to keep Maggie safe, even if it means working three jobs and giving up sleep to be around during her shifts at the bar. But when Maggie boldly tells him she needs more than a loyal friend now, Shane knows a single night together won't be possible. The idea of spirited Maggie in his bed is electrifying, but will she believe he wants to give her his heart, too?
MY REVIEW:
     Best friends since high school no one truly thought it would last guys and girls can’t just be friends.  Yet, Maggie O’Leary, 26, went to tutor Shane Callahan the big football star when they were 16.  They hit it off but everyone including themselves thought their closeness would end once he passed the class.  But they just fit.  Not to mention Shane had a terrible crush on her.
     Ten years has passed and Maggie is returning from Ireland where she has lived for the past year and a half.  She had been staying with family.  It was a trip to get back in touch with herself.  You see 3 ½ years before she had left she had been raped by her ex-boyfriend who had drugged her first.
     The whole time she was gone Shane would skype her just to see her, to hear her voice, and to know she was okay.  You see at the time of the rape Shane worked as a bouncer at the bar and then him being so madly and deeply in love with her he felt he should have been there to protect her which was crazy because her ex Todd was crazy.  Yet, it didn’t stop the guilt that Shane carried around as well as her family.  His thoughts were he should have seen the signs or that he missed something.  Some cop he would make if they ever accepted him into the academy. 
     So, without calling her family and much thought on her part Maggie came home for good.  She asked Shane to be the one to pick her up from the airport which he was all too happy to do.  Anything to have her back in his arms.  Which of course he did on both counts.  She wants to stop for coffee before getting home so she can tell him her ideas about her near future.  One she wants to be a part of the family business again but especially O’Leary’s bar.  She grew up there and it was like a second home and she will not let Todd take that way.  Her second idea was she wanted to ask her brother Ryan if there is an apartment available so that she could move into.  Shame went white.  You see Todd raped her in the apartment she had at the time upstairs above the bar of which there were several.  Shane needed to do some fast talking and not piss her off in the process or she would just dig in her heels.  So she got her to agree to talk things over with her therapist on the best way to approach her family.  Which gained him brownie points.  It also gave him time to enact his plan.  Of how to protect her.
     What can a man who has been in love with a woman since they were 16 do when she has achieved steps one and two?  When of her plan to feel normal again and to be treated normal by those who love her do all but the opposite?  She asks her best friend Shane who knows her inside out, knows about the rape, and she feels safe with him to have S-E-X with her.  When shock cross his race she echoes loudly a one time no strings attached screw.  Oh yeah that makes it better.
     Watch and see how these two walk through the residual mind field from her rape.  The tap dance of emotions Maggie goes through as she tries to find her footing in a new life, in her family, and with Shane.  Can there be more for Shane and Maggie?  Will there be more?

     This was a fun rollercoaster of emotions as you walk with Maggie five years after her rape.  So, there are still the moments of panic but this is more about Maggie taking charge of her life again.  Most of all standing up to her family by not acting like the baby but as the empowered woman she can continue to try to be.  Wish there had been an epilogue to tell us if they marry, etc…  I give this 4 stars.  Provide by Netgalley.  Follow us at: www.1rad-readerreviews.com

FORWARD PASS

FORWARD PASS                                                DESIREE HOLT

Get Ready to Play Rough
Shay Beckham grew up idolizing her brother's best friend, star quarterback Joe Reilly. There was no one in their Texas town who had the moves to match Joe on or off the field. Years later, he's still a player who has what it takes to drive any hot-blooded woman wild. But Shay isn't a kid with a bad case of hero-worship anymore. She's grown-up and independent, with her feet on the ground and a serious head on her shoulders. If she could just say the same for Joe.
It's been fifteen years, but Joe Reilly hasn't forgotten the skinny little kid who used to follow him around like a shadow. What he can't get over is that the skinny shadow has grown into one hell of an incredible woman. One any man in his right mind would kill to get his hands on. And one who seems to be completely immune to him. He knows he and Shay could have something special together. If he could only convince her he's about more than just the game.

MY REVIEW:
     Okay!  This is the situation.  What happens when you are so blessed, not, to be the kid sister to Hank Beckham?  One of Grand Falls star football players of the high school team.  His best friend since they were twelve is none other than Joe Reilly the beloved quarterback.
     The real problem here is these two were demi gods of the team, schools, and town.  Shay on the other hand was known as the skinny pesky tag along little sister to Hank.  The thing is since the age of eight years old she had the worst crush on Joe.  Because of the undying love learned everything there was to know about football.
     Joe being Joe would talk football stats with her and was even impressed with her knowledge.  But, when cheerleaders were within 50 feet he became the walking “Sex Stick.”  Which means he totally forgot about her even telling her to get lost.  Well, as the guys went off to college and like Joe many were drafted by the NFL.  Joe however kept his “Sex Stick” ways.
     Soon Shay was off to college at NYU and then got a primo job as a graphic designer for a sport corp. with all her knowledge of football it really paid off.  She stayed fit as her breast came in and her curves showed she was a woman although she never got much taller.  The woman was a powerhouse sexy, successful, and sassy.  Yet, there was something missing.  She thought it was time to move back home to her country roots of Texas.  Yet, she had been back staying with Hank a successful engineer in his own right and still best friends with Joe.
     As she returned from her commute to the company headquarters in N.Y. she had time to think on the cab ride home.  As to why three relationships she was in didn’t work.  What she came up with is she used the yardstick of JOE.  She knew everyone would lose which was not fair to them or her.  Plus she used Joe in her daydreams and sex dreams at night.  Who could compare to that?  At that moment she knew that if she ever wanted to marry a great guy, have children she would have to stop the love fest for Joe.  She would always love him but it was time to move on.  Not to mention he never would see her as anything other than Hank’s skinny little pesky sister.
     That was working well until she was banging on the shower door for Hank’s female guest who was supposed to be gone to get out of her shower.  She ordered her out in 5 seconds.  She no sooner turned around to leave when the water turned off and the shower door opened and a very male voice says, “Okay, I don’t want you any more stress.  But Hank said I should use this one.”
     She quickly turned around.  She nearly swallowed her tongue.  A very, very wet Joe Reilly was in her shower grinning at her.  At that moment her brother text message chimes in to her.  “BTW, Joe’s in town.  Take good care of him.”  Well, since Shay couldn’t take her eyes off him, like a train wreck.  Starting at his head and moving down and OMG!  He was sporting an erection that her dreams couldn’t even imagine.  Outrageous!  Do you think this is the way Hank wanted her to take care of Him?
     I really enjoyed the story overall.  The love scenes were erotic in some areas, funny in others, and boring in some.  It just seemed like some of the love scenes were forced to help the story along.  I found that sad though because the characters were strong bold characters.  Even Hank, her brother, that texted through most of the story.  You could even catch on to his intentions after a while and it was funny.  So, I would give this a 4 star.  Provided by Netgalley.

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CHASING EACH OTHER

CHASING EACH OTHER                                   J.D. RIVERA

(Mature Content Recommended for ages 18+)

Miranda… 
I was always the life of the party, the happy one. 
Until Preston killed my soul. 
When he came into my life, he destroyed me. I was a shell of my former self, pretending to be fine while wishing I wouldn't wake up the next day. I never dreamed my best friend would come back into my life...and bring Brad Nicholson with her. 
I never dreamed the homicide detective with the cocky attitude could show me my worth again. He could show me that my life could be amazing every day. 
Until the day he found out about my past with Preston. Then, I was sure he'd see the real Miranda and ditch me for good. 

Brad… 
From a young age, I made a decision. 
I knew what I wanted to do with my life and from that point on, my work molded me. Everything became routine. Casual. Until Mackenzie walked into my life, bringing her best friend, Miranda, with her. 
From the first moment I saw Miranda, I knew she could be someone special. I didn’t have time for relationships, but she was different. She was a piece of the puzzle that could be missing. But she was broken, I could see that. And all I wanted to do was turn her into the girl I knew she really was beneath her perfectly placed mask.

MY REVIEW:
 I really enjoyed this book.  It was nice to see a guy who basically was a player was falling hard for a younger woman.  The twist is there was moral clause in his head he didn’t want to cross which was twist in and of itself.  You see there was a 9 year age difference which he thought was a lot and that weirded him out.  Not to mention she was his adopted sister's best friend which to him would cause problems he thought.
     Brad Nicholson, 28, and a homicide detective met his sister Mackenzie’s best friend when everyone went out to dinner together.  Miranda Clark, 19, student and bar waitress had the same crushing going on since that same day for Brad too.  From that day they would run into each other at other events only really exchanging hellos with each other but could not take their eyes off one another.  Which Miranda felt was for the best since she felt once he learned about her past he wouldn’t have anything to do with her.
     When Miranda was a senior in High School she met Mackenzie.  They were besties right off until Miranda met Preston Wilson the most loving and caring guy any girl could want as a boyfriend.  That was until he got them both hooked on cocaine.  Then he became someone she should have feared but her reactions, emotions, and overall feelings were blurred due to the cocaine and his now physical and verbal abuse.
     Until the night of her graduation when she had been either at the school or with her family celebrating that she needed a fix.  She heads over to Preston’s when she arrives the car of the girl she caught him with before and he swore he would never be around her again.  Figuring they would be in his room she went there first but he wasn’t there.  So, she went to his stash, took a hit first then went room to room looking for them.  She figured out they were in the garage.  When she opens the garage they are having sex on the hood of his dad’s car.  She loses it and pushes him when he asks, “Do you like what you see.”  He turns and pushes her harder knocking the air out of her as she hits the ground.  Calling her nothing but a “dumb bitch,” “pathetic,” “stupid,” and basically his “whore.”  Then he proceeds to punch the hell out of her.  Followed by more vile words until she blacked out.
     When she woke up she got up the house was empty.  When she got in her truck being so upset and physically hurt and still high she wrecked her truck into a tree.  Parents put her into rehab for the summer.  She came home changed.  But so had Carson, Mackenzie, Hayes, and a few others.  The best, best part was Preston had left town.
     Two years later she’s met back up with these friends and sexy as hell Brad. He being a man with a career and dating women with no baggage always set her insecurities in motion.  See how these two chase each other and how they are both affected when Miranda starts receiving mysterious phone calls but doesn’t tell anyone.
     I really enjoyed this book.  The whole suspense of the phone calls keeps it edgy.  The romance was a nice twist of an older man liking someone younger but for once thinking about what others might think and what it may do to his life as a whole.  But love is love and your heart is your heart and if everyone is of age then you have to do the best you can and just be respectful of each other. And there was a nice mix of this and some other interesting twist to the plot.  I give this 4 stars.  Provided by Netgalley.

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Coming on Friday SJ Hooks Author of: Absolute Beginners

Guess Who Will Be Here
Friday, July 31
At 7pm PST?

SJ Hooks
Author of:
Come by starting tomorrow and Thursday we will have excerpts and Friday 7pm PST will be her written interview.

LET'S WELCOME: PARKER S. HUNTINGTON AUTHOR OF: ASHER BLACK

Let’s Welcome Parker S. Huntington The Author of: Rad-Reader:  What was your inspiration behind it? Parker:   John Wick ...