Friday, May 16, 2014

Blog Tour, ARC Book Review and Giveaway --> Sons of Temptation #1- Within Temptation by Tanya Holmes


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Title:  Within Temptation  (Sons of Temptation #1)
Author: Tanya Holmes
Release Date: May 12, 2014
Category: Romantic Mystery/Romantic Suspense. This is not erotica or romantica. This is a romance centered around a murder mystery.
Heat Factor: 3 out of 5 -- The sexual tension is high, and the burn is slow. Sex is character-driven, rather than plot-driven.

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Love, betrayal and murder in a small town….
Twelve years after her mother's murder, Shannon Bradford fears she may have helped convict an innocent man. Even worse, her prominent family may have had something to do with it. Desperate for answers, she seeks help from the one person least likely to give it. Her best friend and childhood crush, Trace Dawson. The man she sent to prison. Serving hard time for murder has left Trace angry and bitter. As far as he's concerned, digging into the past won't replace the years he's lost or erase the hell he's lived. Now that he's free, Shannon Bradford tops his list of bad memories. But he never counted on falling in love. Set in a sleepy little town during the dead of winter, this award-winning romance novel is a tale of one woman's quest for truth and a man's struggle to forgive.    


Excerpt
No more than two minutes could have passed, two of the most terrifying minutes I’d ever had. The left side of my face was numb with cold. My lips and hands ached too. I couldn’t seem to make anything move. The details came in pieces. How I’d almost been run over. How a stranger shoved me to safety just before a Jeep playing target practice could send me flying. Then as if someone had flipped a switch, sensory explosions filled the void. Horns blared. Somebody screamed. A baby was crying. And the wind howled while sounds burst forth in a crush of voices. “I swear the brakes locked!” a teenage boy yelled. “She ain’t dead, is she? Oh, jeez. Daddy’s gonna kill me!” “Don’t just stand there. Call 911!” a girl shrieked. A cell phone chimed and someone started pressing numbers. Next, an old man with a rough-and-ready voice said, “Pushed her out the way just in time. Another second and—” “Is she dead or not?” the teenager demanded again. While this was going on, I sat up, taking my time to ensure I was in one piece. Except for a sore hip, a bump on the head, and a scraped knee, I was fine. A woman standing nearby helped me, and as I got to my feet, realization dawned. Trace Dawson had tried to save me. I fought to see past the crowd into the parking lot, spotting him instantly. He’d just struggled to his feet and was staring right at me, his chin dripping blood. The people scurrying about and the cars streaming through the slush faded. Nothing but the two of us existed. Memories flooded my mind, of the quiet riot he was, of the secret crush I’d had on him, and the extraordinary friendship we’d shared so many years ago. As fast as those images came, others replaced them. I was thrust back to the crime scene, back to Mother’s corpse and the shirtless eighteen-year-old roaring obscenities while Sheriff Gray and a deputy dragged him away in handcuffs. Trace Dawson the man glared at me now, and his eyes were hard and accusing, eyes brimming with fire and ice. A chill wind rumbled past him, but he stood as still as a statue. Only his eyes moved while he looked me up and down with agonizing thoroughness. The rage. The pain. It was all there. Trace?” I whispered. In chilling silence, he walked away without so much as a glance over his shoulder.  

Book Review
The first thing that intrigued me about the book was the blurb which promised me two of my favorite things together, namely: a good romance and an engaging mystery! The cover is hot and clearly shows that the book is meant for readers above eighteen years of age.

The plot is well conceived and executed. I loved the mystery with its unexpected twists and turns which had me guessing till the very end. I just didn't see the end coming like the way it did in the book. :)

Tanya has the skill for writing good mysteries and she kept one step ahead of me throughout the story. The narration is fluid but the language was a bit too strong and crude for my taste but then I think it was the demand of the story with the protagonist being an ex-con and all.

The characterization is admirable and Tanya gives us flawed people who have their own share of mistakes which have defined them into being what they are now. I liked Trace but cant say the same for Shannon. She just didn't connect with me. There romance had its moments but it wasn't able to keep me all starry eyed throughout. Tanya needs to work on the romance angle. Sometimes the romance felt just sex without any real feelings involved which, in my opinion, downplayed the appeal and emotional angle to the story.

The story has both Shannon and Trace's POV and it is beautifully done with fluid shifts between the POVs. 

All in all, Within Temptation was an enjoyable read and I definitely look forward to reading the next book in the series which is Trace's brother, Chole's story. Multi-layered story with strong characters, an engaging story, a hot romance and a suspense that keeps you at the edge of your seat, I give  Within Temptation a 4 out of 5. I highly recommend the book to all romance lovers.Tanya is definitely a talented author and I look forward to reading more from her in the future. :)

I received an ARC copy of the book to read and review and I am very thankful to the author and the tour organizers. The above is my honest and unbiased opinion and in no way influenced.


Buy the Book
Amazon.com: Paperback | Kindle Ebook
Amazon.in: Kindle Ebook
 
About the Author

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Tanya Holmes is a former Romance Writers of America Golden Heart finalist, a recipient of the Maggie Award, the MICA Award, as well as Overall Winner of the Sandy Haddad Award and a two-time finalist and one-time winner of The Emily (Best of the Best). She's happily married with children and loves reading, writing and a good cup of coffee---but not necessarily in that order. Her debut novel, Within Temptation is due out on May 12, 2014.  

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Buying Links
Amazon.com: Paperback | Kindle Ebook
Amazon.in: Kindle Ebook

Giveaway!
Winner 1 (U.S. ONLY)

Signed copy of Within Temptation by Tanya Holmes
Within Temptation rack card  
Within Temptation magnet   
Within Temptation keychain  
Sizzling Pages Reviews (Courtesy of Ang) Winners choice of 1 ebook @ 3.99 or less
Playing For Keeps by Jamie Denton, paperback
The Matchmaker by Jamie Denton, paperback
Flirting With Chaos by Kenya Wright, e-book
Nailed by Amie Stuart e-book
Dreaming Silas by Nina Ceves, e-book


Winner 2  (U.S. ONLY) 

Signed copy of Within Temptation by Tanya Holmes
Within Temptation rack card  
Within Temptation magnet  
Within Temptation keychain  
J.A.Dennam, e-book, Winner picks one book in her Captive Series (Truth And Humility, Between Faith And Fear, or Chrystal Mac)
Sizzling Pages Reviews (Courtesy of Ang) Winners choice of 1 ebook @ 3.99 or less
The Matchmaker, by Jamie Denton, paperback
Complicated By You by Kenya Wright e-book
Reason To Breathe, and Barely Breathing by Rebecca Donovan signed paperbacks, courtesy of Ellen from The Book Bellas 
Catch Me by Katherine Grant, e-book

Winner 3 (Open To International Entrants)

Within Temptation by Tanya Holmes e-book
Sick Day by Morgan Parker, ebook, 
A Test Of Love by Kenya Wright, ebook
Second Chances by PJ Fiala, ebook
30 Days by K. Larsen, e-book 
The Blue Amaryllis bySonia De Leon, e-book, 
Perfect Match by Kelly Arlia, e-book,
For Nicky by A.D. Ellis, e-book,
Forever Young by Sherry Sirna, e-book, 

Kelsey's Korner Blog, signed mixed bag of swag  

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