December 18, 2013

'Exquisite Betrayal' Blog Tour - Review

December 18, 2013

Welcome to my stop on the Exquisite Betrayal blog tour, hosted by InkSlingerPR! I am excited to be a part of it, and to celebrate A.M. Hargrove's latest and tasteful novel yet that released yesterday. I'm kicking off the tour with a review AND a giveaway below. Enjoy!

Title: Exquisite Betrayal
Author: A.M. Hargrove
Publication Date: December 17, 2013
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Purchase Links: Amazon | B&N | iBooks | Book Depository | Books A Million

A male Romance Author… a convention in Vegas… a female book blogger… a goal to lose her virginity… what next? Find out when you mix all the above!

Fallon McKinley is headed to Vegas for the Wicked Wenches Romance Con and losing her virginity is only one of her goals. The other is to meet her favorite author of romance novels, R.T. Sinclair. What she doesn’t realize is that the sexy green-eyed god she rams into at the airport is the real R.T. When they keep running into each other, she’s shocked, but excited, because the attraction is irresistible.

Ryland Thomas Sinclair doesn’t want anyone to know his true identity. He’s the author that all women love, but everyone thinks he’s a female. He hides his persona behind the public face of his twin sister, keeping his own a secret. But after meeting the lovely Fallon, his intentions to avoid a relationship come to a screeching halt. She’s put an unwanted kink into his perfectly laid out plans. His unusual reaction surprises him because after a heart-shredding breakup a few years ago, he’s managed to avoid women at all costs.

Resisting Fallon becomes more difficult than he imagines. Soon things are spiraling out of control, until a major miscommunication has Fallon walking out of his home and his life. Will Ryland Thomas succeed in losing the woman he loves? Or can he win her back?

I am so happy I came across this book for many reasons. Once I heard that it was about an author and a blogger romance in sin city, I had to read it. I've wanted to marry an author, and me being a blogger, thought Exquisite Betrayal is my cup of tea. An author falls in love with a blogger -- a dream come true for me, right? I was thinking that this must have been written about me, and I told A.M. Hargrove just as much. It also doesn't help that the author in question of this story has green eyes, which, if you know me well, are my undoing from the get go. Once I learn that the love interest has green eyes, I know I'm in for some trouble. However, that's not all he has to have. Those green eyes has got to come equip with a level of sarcasm to match mine. Although Vegas isn't my most favorite place in the states, doesn't mean I didn't enjoy it. I actually love Vegas, especially when festivals and conventions are going on. Having the setting in Vegas made this story all the more fun. I'm glad that readers get to pick at both the authors and bloggers minds, as it is told in both Fallon and Rylands POVs.

Fallon makes a rather embarrassing entrance when she encounters Ryland (aka R.T. Sinclair) less than gracefully upon arrival outside of the airport. Nothing says hello like a nip slip during a fall in Vegas. That just means Fallon is doing it right in sin city, no matter how back her luck streak is going. Recovering from the fall, she comes face to face with Mr. sexy green eyes. While Fallon is embarrassed, Ryland is turned on. He can't stop looking at her or checking her out more than once. After awkward silence ensues, they part ways, but not for long. Fallon and her fellow blogger friends are in town for a book convention, and Ryland is there because he is an author. However, he's under a pseudo identity so he can have a private life in peace. He is hiding behind his sister, who helps him out by posing as the author of his book at the convention. The author and blogger are bound to run into each other again at some point. Since no one knows his true identity, Fallon was unaware that the gorgeous stranger she bumped into at the airport was the one and only R.T. Sinclair. Oh, and did I mention that he's British? Hot damn.

Fallon jumbles up everything in Ryland's head as much as she jumbles up everything else with her clumsiness, which has been proven plenty right from the start. She has the writer at a loss for words. I loved that. What a game changer. The chemistry between Fallon and Ryland is heavily charged with sexual tension and an underlying layer of something deeper. Fallon being a book lover and blogger, she has an understanding with the author himself, even if she doesn't know it. Yet. There was a lot of pushing and pulling on Ryland's part due to his fear of his identity to be revealed, and that only leaves Fallon reeling with raging confusion and tension. Add regular on top of the sexual kind, why don't you, Ryland? Ryland's identity, and him not wanting the secret out, drives a wedge between the two more times than I can count. Just step up and be a man and follow what your heart -- and other extremities -- desires already, Ryland! I don't know how many times I mentally yelled that at him. Good thing we have his sister to be the voice of reason. I mean, I can understand where he's coming from, but if your feelings are growing stronger and deeper, it's just not fair to have them in the dark until someone or something else spills the beans. It's better to let them know from you, so there's some trust and honesty. Can't have a relationship, or something leading to one, be built on secrets and lies. As for the betrayal? Well, you're going to have to read it to find the gitty details once the cards are on the table. So pull up a chair -- you're in for a treat. Although, the hint as to what it is can be easy to guess upon reading the synopsis. 

Can we say hello to our new book boyfriend, Ryland? When Ryland proclaims his love... gosh -- lines like that seem to be better coming from an author. It's like fantasy became reality hot off the pages. He knows how to throw your mind through a loop, and definitely knows how to make you swoon. In the end, his hearts in the right place. Of course, as book lover, we tend to make assumptions and associate things that pertains to books. And the book lover and blogger herself [Fallon] does just that on fair occasions. There's no love like the love from a writer, and a reader to eat it up. You know they say, "fall in love with a writer" or "date a girl who reads" ...well, I think there's a reason for that. This book has that special kind of love in there that only those who thrives in words that comes alive from the pages and jump into their heart can understand. I can't say anything to justify it for Fallon and Ryland, but it touches my book loving heart.

Ryland's sister -- OMG she is a hoot! Her character just oozes bold and fiery of a little woman. I love that she stands her ground, and puts her brother in his place. She's an all around good person in general, and a good sister. The dynamic between them is just too much for an American like me. Kind of. British blokes and their humor, I swear, they put Americans to shame. I enjoyed the banter between them -- it had me mentally high-fiving her as well as in a laughing fit. It was highly comical to say the least.

The narration seemed a bit plain at the beginning, I found myself skimming through and putting it down often until it got to the good parts. I felt that there was something missing for the story arc. I was tempted to give it a 3 or 3.5. Nevertheless, the rich banter and thick sexual tension made up for it tenfold. Although it had it's flat parts in the book, the core of the story in it's entirety was still interesting to follow. That's how it maintained a 4 out of 5 from me. I guess , a green-eyed British guy, Las Vegas, a straight-laced British sister, humor, sexual innuendos/tension and an author/blogger romance had something to do with that as well.

I love the crass and hilarious banter and sexual innuendos that are unabashedly expressed in this story. I know that bloggers are hilarious as they are painfully honest, but the secondary characters were highly entertaining with their humor. I was left in countless laughing fits. Fall in lust and love with the story of an author and a blogger who just that in the heart of sin city. This was definitely an exquisite read.

5 Reasons To Read Exquisite Betrayal

  1. Las Vegas. City of sin. And a book convention. That is, if you're a book lover like me. There's plenty of things going on in this city for these characters, and it'll leave you laughing, dancing and falling in love.
  2. Book bloggers. I mean, how many books are about a book blogger, let alone a blogger in general? 
  3. British siblings. I think I covered Ryland and his sister. British always knows how to have a good time while being blatantly straight with you without a filter. They are just hilarious and serve up good points.
  4. Losing the v-card mission. These kind of stories always turns out to be quite the adventure. Especially when the one whose a virgin on a mission is a bit awkward yet crass at the same time. You can definitely expect great laughs, and more often than not, some sweet lovin.
  5. Ryland Thomas. AKA R.T. Sinclair. Need I say more? For a romance author, he knows how to swoon with words, and what better to hear them from a writer? They understand more than those who do not read. Oh, and the fact that he's British with green eyes just makes him even more book boyfriend-worthy -- which is funny considering he's an author himself, yet he's a BBF to us readers. I guess in their world, he's a real life BBF.

I received an ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review and to be a part of the Exquisite Betrayal blog tour, however, it does not influence my review. I want to thank the author for providing a copy and for letting me join the tour.

Purchase Exquisite Betrayal

About the author
One day, on her way home from work as a sales manager, A. M. Hargrove, realized her life was on fast forward and if she didn't do something soon, it would quickly be too late to write that work of fiction she had been dreaming of her whole life. So, she rolled down the passenger window of her fabulous (not) company car and tossed out her leather briefcase. Luckily, the pedestrian in the direct line of fire was a dodge ball pro and had ├╝ber quick reflexes enabling him to avoid getting bashed in the head. Feeling a tad guilty about the near miss, A. M. made a speedy turn down a deserted side street before tossing her crummy, outdated piece-of-you-know-what lap top out the window. She breathed a liberating sigh of relief, picked up her cell phone, called her boss and quit her job. Grinning, she made another call to her hubs and told him of her new adventure (after making sure his heart was beating properly again).

So began A. M. Hargrove's career as a YA/NA and Adult Romance writer. Her books include Kissing Fire, Edge of Disaster, Shattered Edge, the series the Guardians of Vesturon (Survival, Resurrection, Determinant, Beginnings and reEmergent), Dark Waltz and the upcoming release Tragically Flawed.

Other than being in love with being in love, she loves chocolate, ice cream and coffee and is positive they should be added as part of the USDA food groups. 

(If you're wondering, it didn't happen EXACTLY that way, but….)

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