Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Cover Reveal – Netminder by Jeff Adams

For teenage secret agent Theo Reese, summer brought one surprise after another, and now that he’s back at school, the shocks keep coming. The unthinkable has happened—enemies have breached Tactical Operational Support, forcing Theo and his parents to instigate the protocols they’ve put in place in case of a worst-case scenario.

As Theo goes on the run and tries to stay ahead of those pursuing them, he realizes the TOS network is down… and he’s on his own. He soon discovers the renegade organization Blackbird is responsible.

Theo's been targeted by an old nemesis, who will do whatever it takes to force his hand and obtain his help in taking global control of the internet.

Theo must prevent the internet hijacking, and while he finds allies, they’re in the last place he expects.

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Book 4
Releases May 28th

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Harmony Ink

This excerpt is from Chapter 2. If you've read Audio Assault, you've probably seen the Chapter 1 sneak peek that's in the back and you know Theo comes home from school to an emergency. If you haven't read that, this gives you an idea that from the very start of the book the stakes are already very high.

John was right—I had to get out.

I grabbed the pack off the floor and scrambled down the stairs as fast as I could. Going out the front door would be stupid. I stopped there, though, and engaged the three locks. From the garage, I’d arm the security system. If they came back, it’d go off and at least alert the cops.

I ran through the house, back the way I’d come. In the garage I unracked the bike and got ready to go into the backyard.

The alarm wouldn’t set. I entered the codes again but instead of a confirmation that it would arm in ten seconds nothing happened.

What the hell?

I tried again, but nothing.

They’d done something. No time to figure it out.

Backpack across my shoulders, I burst out the back door and sprinted across the yard to the fence line, rolling the bike next to me.

I heaved the bike over the fence, which was slightly taller than I was. Regret shot through me at having done that to my expensive, fine-tuned machine. There was no choice, though.

Hockey conditioning came in handy as I pulled myself up the wood planks that had no footholds. I dropped next to the bike, which had landed in a pile of brush.

Looking around, memories rushed back. When we were kids, Mitch and I, along with other friends, would play hide and seek, laser tag and Indiana Jones in these woods. There were plenty of paths and, even though I hadn’t been back here in years, the routes were as clear as ever.

I pulled the phone and called 911.

“911. What’s your emergency?” a woman answered with authority.

“I need an ambulance at 1321 Remington Way.” My voice cracked and quivered. “My uncle. He’s hurt.” A whimper escaped. “Please hurry.”

“What’s his injury?”

“Someone… he’s been… he’s bleeding.”

Should I say he’s shot? Or missing a hand? Keeping details to just enough to get them here seemed enough.

“I’m sending an ambulance and police. Where’s he bleeding from?”

“He’s….” I could barely talk anymore.

“Take a deep breath and try to calm down. Help is on the way. We can stay on the phone until….” Her voice shifted into calmer tone that was more than I could handle.

I gulped air. “He’s been shot and… and… I just got home.”

“Where’s the gun now?”

I hung up. She couldn’t help me. I had to pull myself together and get going. John would be okay. He had to be.

He told me to go. He knew I’d follow his order.

What if that was wrong?

I couldn’t change it now. I had to go before anyone came.

Also Available in the Codename: Winger Series

Book 1
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Harmony Ink

For reviews & more info, check out our Tracker Hacker post.

Book 2
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Harmony Ink

For reviews & more info, check out our Schooled post.

Book 3
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Harmony Ink

For reviews & more info, check out our Audio Assault post.

JEFF ADAMS has written stories since he was in middle school and became a published author in 2009. He writes both gay romance and LGBTQ young adult fiction… and there’s usually a hockey player at the center of the story.

Jeff lives in rural northern California with his husband of twenty years, Will. Some of his favorite things include the musicals Rent and [title of show], the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins hockey teams, and the reality TV competition So You Think You Can Dance. He also loves to read, but there isn’t enough space to list out his favorite books.

Jeff is the co-host of the Big Gay Fiction Podcast, a weekly show devoted to gay romance as well as pop culture. New episodes come out every Monday at

Connect with Jeff

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Codename: Winger Series

In honor of the cover reveal of the final book in the Codename: Winger series, we're hosting a Scavenger Hunt. The first clue has been added to the Rafflecopter today, February 27th. The second clue will be added on Thursday, February 28th. The final clue will be added on Friday, March 1st. The Rafflecopter will be open until midnight on Sunday, March 3rd.
Happy Hunting!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

On Thin Ice by Julie Cross

Brooke Parker never expected to find herself in the tiny town of Juniper Falls, Minnesota. Of course, she also never expected to lose her dad. Or for her mom to lose herself. Brooke feels like she’s losing it… until she finds Juniper Falls hockey. Juniper Falls girls’ hockey, that is.

Jake Hammond, current prince of Juniper Falls, captain of the hockey team, and player with the best chance of scoring it big, is on top of the world. Until one hazing ritual gone wrong lands him injured, sitting on the sidelines, and—shocking even to him—finding himself enjoying his “punishment” as assistant coach for the girls’ team.

As Jake and Brooke grow closer, he finds the quiet new girl is hiding a persona full of life, ideas, and experiences bigger and broader than anything he’s ever known. But to Jake, hockey’s never just been a game. It’s his whole life. And leveraging the game for a shot at their future might be more than he can give.

Add to Goodreads –

Book 3
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Entangled Publishing

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

I was completely obsessed with this book from page one. I read book one in this series and felt that the middle dragged out a bit, that was 100% not the case with this book. I couldn’t put it down – I’m already excited to read the next book in the series.

Brooke has had her life completely flipped upside down – her father is arrested, her and her mother, who is a drug zombie most days, have had to move from their Texas home to live with her grandmother in Michigan, also meaning that she has had to start over at a new high school. Oh, and her entire life has revolved around dancing and her new school doesn’t have that either. All-in-all, Brooke is a super quiet girl who is just trying to get through life.

Jake Hammond is literally the town prince, star hockey player, and all-around popular dude. Until a hazing ritual that he didn’t even want to participate in goes terribly wrong and Jake ends up not only taking the blame but also with a broken collarbone. Now Jake is unable to play hockey, the town has taken his prince title, and his father is mad at him for not blaming the other players of his team for the hazing. Brooke quite literally saved Jake’s life and that combined with Jake coaching the girl’s hockey team Brooke joined means the two wind up spending a ton of time together and forming an unbreakable bond.

I really love that though the situations that happen to the kids in this book suck, they’re realistic and the author does a fantastic job bringing this story to life. This has definitely been my favorite book in the series so far. I’m really looking forward to seeing who the next book will be about!

On Thin Ice is the third installment of the Juniper Falls series. This is a standalone series, meaning the books can be read out of series order with no confusion felt by the reader.

I'm a big fan of Julie Cross's writing style and the way she creates young adults who are believable and lifelike, their quirkiness a breath of fresh air rather than over-done or over-the-top. At the same time, Cross always manages to have me clicking the pages at a rapid rate, needing to know what happens next.

Brooke's numbness resonated with me. Her father is in prison and her mother has checked out, leaving Brooke to move in with her grandmother. But she doesn't adjust well, closing herself off instead of experiencing the chaotic emotions that would tear her apart.

Brooke doesn't believe she needs anyone, but she received unlikely support and attention from the most popular boy in school, Jake. Their connection is strong and realistic. Believable. She opens up and learns to trust again.

After a hazing gone wrong, Jake is thrust into Brooke's path. This is obviously a hockey romance, but it isn't pushed to the wayside like many novels do. Hockey is a supportive character in the novel, having its own voice. I actually didn't know anything about the sport, and I learned a bunch without it coming off as textbook or too much information. The delivery was perfect, an entertaining way to teach.

I highly recommend this novel, the series, and the author to fans of young adult, as Julie Cross is on my must-read list.

Young Adult age-range: 14+ disclaimer on hazing rituals gone wrong.

Julie Cross is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of New Adult and Young Adult fiction, including the Tempest series, a young adult science fiction trilogy which includes Tempest, Vortex, Timestorm (St. Martin's Press). She's also the author of Letters to Nowhere series, Whatever Life Throws at You, Third Degree, Halfway Perfect, Chasing Truth, Off the Ice and many more to come! Julie Cross was a longtime resident of central Illinois but has recently moved her entire family across the country to continue her academic studies at Stanford University.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of On Thin Ice (Juniper Falls #3) by Julie Cross to read and review.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Jordan vs. All the Boys by John Goode

There’s a time when life changes, when childhood is left behind and the first fumbling steps are taken into adulthood. One group of friends sets out for a summer of adventure and discovery. Jordan, Brandon, Ethan, and Dominic are ready to grow up and test themselves. But will their friendship buckle under the strain as they face the inevitable misunderstandings and conflicts? If they can hang on to their bond, it will see them through to the ultimate victory…

Finding love.

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Harmony Ink

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

ABSOLUTELY LOVED THIS STORY! John Goode may have made a new fan in me. I enjoyed his narrative and his story telling in Jordan's voice. Speaking directly to us readers is sometimes a bold move, but I found myself pulled in and engaged in Jordan's trials and tribulations entering into the dating world, especially the LGBT dating world. Jordan takes his friends to the happening place in town to meet people. He's determined that they start living their lives and finding their way socially. He and his four high school friends embark upon a journey to the club in town with Jordan leading the way. All of them looking for love, they hit and miss over and over again until they finally find something that feels right. Jordan goes through the gamut of guys in the club scene and the dating apps until he decides maybe he's just not good at this dating thing. Who can’t relate to that??

This story is so endearing and sweet and this group of friends so sincere that my heart melted. I was giggling and smiling throughout. There's some "gamer speak" and younger slang (although all explained to us directly by Jordan), it's definitely a young adult tilt to the book. But being 53 myself, I still found the story fun and exciting and the characters well thought out and complex. I wanted more and was sad to get to the ending. Might need to pick up a few in his other series.

I'd say this book is young adult but also can appeal to an older crowd as well. The gamer speak gives me the belief that it's targeted to 14-20 year olds and there isn't anything heavier than some make out scenes.

This is a sweet and funny story about a group of high school friends who are eager to gain a little sex and relationship experience during the summer before their senior year. As the only gay kid in his group of friends, Jordan finds this challenge more difficult than his friends do. His first experiences are both comical and humiliating but with help from his friends he slowly starts to figure out what he wants from the boys he meets.

This book gave me all the good feels. Jordan’s group of friends is wonderful. I love their friendships and I love Jordan’s self-aware analysis of his friendships. The author manages to capture the pure awkward fear that is a universal part of adolescence while also capturing the warmth, the hope, and the sarcasm that can make the teen years magical. I love the strong female characters in this book, and I love the easy acceptance of sexual differences within Jordan’s friendship group. This is an easy, fun young adult read that is both sweet and a little bit edgy. Like all the best young adult writing, it is never patronising or preachy and I think most teenagers will be able to recognise themselves in Jordan and his friends. I also really enjoyed the author’s personal reflections at the end of the story.

Age wise, this will be enjoyed by older teenagers who can relate to Jordan’s experiences. I would be happy to give a copy to my 14-year-old but the story does contain some sexually explicit references and some swearing. Parents will probably want to read this alongside younger teens so they can have conversations about the more mature content.

JOHN GOODE is a member of the class of ’88 from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, specializing in incantations and spoken spells. At the age of fourteen, he proudly represented District 13 in the 65th Panem games, where he was disqualified for crying uncontrollably before the competition began. After that he moved to Forks, Washington, where against all odds he dated the hot, incredibly approachable werewolf instead of the stuck-up jerk of a vampire but was crushed when he found out the werewolf was actually gayer than he was. After that he turned down the mandatory operation everyone must receive at sixteen to become pretty, citing that everyone pretty was just too stupid to live, before moving away for greener pastures. After falling down an oddly large rabbit hole, he became huge when his love for cakes combined with his inability to resist the commands of sparsely worded notes and was finally kicked out when he began playing solitaire with the Red Queen’s 4th armored division. By eighteen he had found the land in the back of his wardrobe, but decided that thinly veiled religious allegories were not the neighbors he desired. When last seen, he had become obsessed with growing a pair of wings after discovering Fang’s blog and hasn’t been seen since.

Or he is this guy who lives in this place and writes stuff he hopes you read.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Jordan vs. All the Boys by John Goode to read and review.

Friday, February 15, 2019

The Crush Collision by Danielle Ellison

Haley Howell has had a hopeless crush on her brother’s best friend, Jake Lexington, for as long as she can remember. Too bad to him, she’ll forever be off-limits. But with senior year and acceptance to a college outside their tiny southern town of Culler, South Carolina, comes new confidence. Haley’s ready to get Jake to notice her—whatever it takes.

No one in Culler notices the real Jake anymore—to them, he’s nothing more than the star football player or the kid with the family tragedy. When one mistake lands him in mandatory community service, he’s shocked to find his best friend’s little sister there, too. Jake’s looking for an escape; Haley’s looking for a chance. Together, they’ll find exactly what they need... if only they’re willing to cross that line and risk it all.

Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains underage drinking, language, and a drool-worthy football player who puts Tim Riggins to shame. It will make you cry, sigh, and yearn for your own Friday Night Lights.

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Book 2
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Entangled Publishing

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

4.5 Teen Angst Stars.

The Crush Collision is the second installment of the Southern Charmed series. While it shares the same small town life and character set, it can easily be read independently of the series as a standalone. However, the emotional connection might have a better payoff if the series is read in order, since the reader would be familiar to the setting and characters, lending to stronger character development.

First of all, I'm a sucker for the young adult genre, even more so if it features a laid-back, southern lifestyle, allowing the story to shine. Next, nothing is as yummy as the 'my brother's best friend' premise. It adds that angst the young adult genre is known for, yanking those of us who are young at heart back into the past.

Haley has had a crush on Jake since she knew what a crush meant. Too bad Jake is her brother's best friend, therefore he's off-limits. Haley the wallflower, she's her twin's shadow, where he shines so bright, she turns nearly invisible.

Jake is the classic jock, where everyone wants him to succeed at the expense of him getting to be himself. He has a ton of pressure on his shoulders, which makes him play a role in life, instead of being himself. He falls into the stereotypical jock lifestyle of drinking far too much, paying the consequences of those actions.

The Crush Collision was a well-written novel with a decent pace to keep the reader interested. There were a few flaws, which I consider my pet peeves more than anything, added with my reading mood. Since this is a young adult review, I won't make it about me. I'm more likely to offer constructive criticism in an adult review (an adult space). In this genre, I go with the flow, instinctively knowing the teenage population will swoon for this novel.

What I adored the most is how real Haley and Jake's friendship felt, moving at a slow-burn pace, where the readers got to know the characters right alongside them. The foundation was being constructed to hold strong, instead of falling into insta-love territory.

As odd is as it is to admit, I'm enjoy that gut-punch, belly twisting sensation while reading, where I feel true emotions for the characters being brought to life. Ellison managed to pull those sensations out of me, running the full gamut of emotions.

Highly recommended to young adults and those young at heart.

Young Adult Stars: 14+ realistic teenage drama, alcohol abuse.

Also Available in the Southern Charmed Series

Book 1
Buy Links

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Entangled Publishing

For reviews & more info, check out our The Sweetheart Sham post.

Danielle Ellison is a nomad, always on the lookout for an adventure and the next story. In addition to writing, she’s the founder and coordinator of the NoVa TEEN Book Festival. When she’s not busy with books, she’s probably watching her favorite shows, drinking coffee, or fighting her nomadic urges. She is newly settled in Oklahoma (for now) with her cat, Simon, but you can always find her on Twitter.

Connect with Danielle

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of The Crush Collision (Southern Charmed #2) by Danielle Ellison to read and review.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Cover Reveal – Lone Star in Jersey by Gina Harris & Anne Key

Eli faced the fallout of returning to school after his transition, and now he’s starting over in a new school where no one ever knew him as Elizabeth. The best thing about this new beginning might be the girl in the bedazzled Keds.

Sammy’s world of cheerleading, advanced math, and popularity in her Texas high school crumbles with her mother’s death. She’s shipped off to New Jersey to face a father who feels like a stranger and a world where she doesn’t feel like she belongs. At least there’s Eli, the cute boy who is also new at school.

As their friendship deepens and romance begins to bloom, Eli knows he owes Sammy the truth. He hopes he can trust her, and Sammy hopes she can understand falling in love with a trans boy. It’s a lot to deal with alongside the long-buried family secrets coming to light, and neither of their worlds will ever be the same. But maybe building new lives won’t be so hard if they do it together.

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Cover Artist: Tiferet Design

Releases April 30th

Pre-Order Links

Harmony Ink: eBook  ~  Paperback

Gina Harris

Gina Harris is caffeinated. When she’s not drinking coffee, she is on the beach or in a boat. Occasionally she can even be found writing. Gina holds a theater degree, and as an author, her strength lies in creating relatable, human characters who are flawed, but step up when you need them most. That unassuming but brilliant girl in your math class. The shy boy who is fantastic on his skateboard. The best friend that doesn’t need to ask because he just gets you, and the new friend that wants to be something more. Gina is the author of I Kiss Girls, a sweet YA romance about a lesbian girl in a small suburban town whose best friend, a straight guy, always gets the girl—until one day he doesn’t.

Gina loves all kinds of live music, musical theater, and superhero movies. She lives in the suburbs of New York City with her wife and children.

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East Meets West YA Facebook Group

Anne Key

Anne Key recently left her beloved Texas and now lives with her amazing wife in the New Mexico mountains, spending her time writing the kinds of books she wants to read, playing with her basset hounds, and making stuff that wants to be art when it grows up. She’s been writing and illustrating for decades, exploring media from poetry to sculpture, from romance novels to weaving. She believes in ghosts, in cowboys, in forgiveness, in happily ever after, in magic, and in love at first sight.

Mostly, she believes in experiencing your own personal joy wherever you can.

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East Meets West YA Facebook Group