Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The Sapphire Affair (Jewel #1) by Lauren Blakely: Release Blitz w/ Review, Excerpt & Giveaway


Bounty hunter Jake Harlowe knows how to track a criminal. So when a group of swindled shareholders hires him to trail their former CEO, Jake expects a quick trip to the Cayman Islands to close another case. Until a devastatingly beautiful woman gets in the way.

Steph Anderson is visiting the Caymans for a rock climbing and dive trip—or so she tells Jake. She’s really trying to find out whether or not her stepfather embezzled money from his company. The last thing Steph needs is the distraction of a sexy, charming man whose kisses drive her wild.

Soon, the pair discover they’re after the same target—and millions in jewels. While Jake can’t be certain Steph isn’t working for her stepfather, and Steph can’t be certain Jake isn’t after the diamonds for himself, they can agree the heat between them is intense, and neither can deny the passion for long.

But the morning after, Steph discovers that she just might have slept with the enemy, and now she’ll have to outwit him to get everything she needs…

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He’d have to get to the bottom of this on his own, and figure out if he was being played by the woman with the starfish belly ring. He wasn’t going to let last night’s kiss cloud his focus. He wasn’t going to let that blue bikini that hugged her hips, and had the good fortune to snuggle up to her breasts, distract him. Absolutely not.

“I’m glad you made it. I thought you’d get a kick out of Happy Turtle Cove, since you named me Happy Turtle,” she said, then dropped her voice to a faux whisper. “But it’s really a cove for turtles. I was just swimming with them.”

Stop. Just stop.

Swimming with turtles was too adorable. Especially when her nose crinkled. A constellation of freckles was splashed across her nose. He hadn’t noticed them yesterday. Briefly, he wondered where else she might be hiding freckles that he’d uncover on a proper and thorough investigation of her fantastic body. Preferably with his tongue, across every inch of her skin. “You were actually swimming with turtles?”

She tapped the mesh bag on her shoulder. “My snorkel gear is in here.” She gestured to her body. “Sorry, I’m still in my bathing suit. I’ll put on a sundress as soon as this is dry.”

“Or just remove the bikini entirely so it’ll dry faster. It’s not ever necessary to put on a dress on my account. I’m completely OK with the bikini as a sole item of clothing on a woman like you,” he said, then nearly smacked himself. He had to stop thinking with his dick. He had to use that head on his goddamn shoulders.

Cover up that body. Put a paper bag over your face. Stop being so damn sexy and sweet. Stop making me think about taking you back to my hotel room and peeling off that bikini and tasting how sweet your sun-kissed skin is.

“I’m glad to know that both nudity and skimpy bathing suits have your sartorial approval. But I actually hope to look somewhat decent when you take me to the Coconut Iguana. My friend Sandy runs it.”

He arched an eyebrow in question.

She tapped her wrist, even though it was bare. She didn’t strike him as a watch wearer. “Lunch time. I’m hungry. So I decided to let you take me out to lunch as a reward for your showing up and following my napkin instructions. Plus, they have the best fish tacos on the Islands, and absolutely amazing coconut drinks,” she said, stepping closer and bumping her hip against him.

A groan rumbled in his chest. Why was the universe torturing him?

He forced his brain to take over. To focus on facts, not lust. Because it made no sense why she’d be hungry, since he’d seen her at a restaurant two hours ago, and she didn’t look like she noshed around the clock. This was another sign that she might be working for the enemy.

“I’m hungry, too. Let’s head to the Coconut Iguana.” He held out a hand, telling himself that lunch was the perfect opportunity to get to the heart of who this woman was. Since she knew Eli, she might be a valuable asset. And if this woman was playing him, he could play her.

About Lauren Blakely:

Lauren Blakely writes sexy contemporary romance novels with heat,

heart, and humor, and her books have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iBooks bestseller lists. Like the heroine in FAR TOO TEMPTING, she thinks life should be filled with family, laughter, and the kind of love that love songs promise. Lauren lives in California with her husband, children, and dogs. She loves hearing from readers! Her novels include Caught Up In Us, Pretending He's Mine, Playing With Her Heart, Trophy Husband, and Far Too Tempting. On November 21, she'll release the edgy new adult novel THE THRILL OF IT. She also writes for young adults under the name Daisy Whitney.

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Review by Yvette:

It’s not often that I sit and read an entire book in one sitting but, from the moment I started The Sapphire Affair by Lauren Blakely, I refused to put down the book until I finished. Not only does this book have a smoking hot romance (as per usual with Lauren Blakely), but the narrative is an action-packed thrill ride, guaranteed to get your adrenaline pumping. There's danger. There's mystery. There's suspense. Did I mention the smoking hot romance? The Sapphire Affair is a high-stakes, adventure-filled romance that starts with a bang and keeps you on your toes until the very last sentence.

With a bounty hunter for a hero and an adventurer for a heroine (seriously, that’s her job), it’s not surprising that The Sapphire Affair is Lauren Blakely’s most exhilarating story to date. We first meet protagonist, Jake Harlowe, in the midst of his job as a recovery specialist – a job that requires careful planning, a bit of luck, and lot of ingenuity. Juggling his hazardous job with acting as a substitute parent for his younger siblings doesn’t leave Jake much time to form romantic connections, yet his one rule is to keep his professional and romantic lives separate. It’s therefore fortuitous that he has no idea that the woman who catches his eye on his latest job happens to be the stepdaughter of his target. When Jake meets Steph Anderson, she’s simply a gorgeous woman in a bar with whom he shares flirtatious banter and incredibly potent chemistry.

When Steph inevitably becomes entangled in Jake’s investigation, professional and personal lines are blurred, and the sexual tension between them escalates to uncontrollable proportions. Their romance is a temptation, a teasing push-and-pull that’s as riveting as the case they’re attempting to unravel. As this novel can attest, no one writes a love scene quite like Lauren Blakely. It's not just sex between her characters (or foreplay, as it may be), it's a physical and emotional intimacy – one that's the result of all-consuming kisses, a worshipping of bodies, and a desire for the characters to memorize each other through taste, touch, and feel. Jake and Steph’s romance may be a slow burn, but the buildup is just as satisfying as the payoff.

As part one of a two-part series, The Sapphire Affair is designed to whet your appetite and entice you to return for more. While I feel as though I've been thoroughly acquainted with Jake and Steph, this book only scratches the surface of their budding romance and of their ongoing investigation. By the end of the book, I was left with an impatient need to fill in the missing pieces of the puzzle, which is admittedly part of the fun. After finishing The Sapphire Affair, I can guarantee you'll be dying to delve right into The Sapphire Heist.

*complimentary copy provided by author in exchange for an honest review

Rating: 5 Stars

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1 comment:

  1. Loved this book! Great cliffhanger and I usually don't like those!