LV’s Monday Meanderings… December 3, 2018!

Happy Monday Meanderers! Here’s this week’s installment of the regular newsletter I created to keep me engaged with you. This will provide a way for you to know what’s going on with me even though I’m not camping out on Social Media anymore. As usual, I have some great books to share with you, including a FREE copy of my own classic, Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever! It’s going to be in a Bookbub promo on December 9, 2018, but you guys can pick it up early if you’d like. Pssst, it’s already FREE!

Writing, Writing, Writing!

This past weekend, I attended my oldest sister’s recent milestone birthday party. I have a big, loud, non-Greek, family that likes to party hard. And like Forrest Gump, “that’s all I have to say about that.”

While away, I fretted over not finishing nanowrimo, whether my upcoming Bookbub promotion was on track, and why I wasn’t using that four day weekend to write. I must say that after seeing my sister’s face when the family greeted her, and after all the heartfelt birthday wishes were shared by friends and family alike, I found myself glad I had taken the journey. Very few things in my like take precedence over my writing, and family is a big one. This sister is approximately seventeen years older than me, and as we all age, more and more of us are not coming back to family gatherings. I simply could not muster up any energy for regret once I saw how moved she was by having her family surround her on that auspicious occasion.

So, today, I’m back on the grind without a single ounce of regret to be had, penning this newsletter, and then getting some words down.

Speaking of writing, if you want to read any of my books while you’re waiting on my new stuff to publish, you can find all my books here. Redeeming the Amazon and Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever are currently FREE: LV Lewis books!

Featured Novel This Week!

Title: Asher Black

by Parker S. Huntington

From Top 20 bestselling author Parker S. Huntington comes a steamy, slow-burn love story full of unexpected love and banter.

It started with my bladder.I didn’t mean to witness a shady deal in the restroom hallway.
I didn’t think twice when I called the cops.
And I certainly didn’t know who the club belonged to.

Asher Black.
Former mafia hitman.
Billionaire CEO.
New York’s most eligible bachelor.

When he shows up at my college, looking for the girl who called the cops on his business, I know I’m as good as dead. What I don’t expect is his offer–he’ll pay for my tuition, set me up with a cushy job after I graduate, and all I have to do is… be his fake fiancée.

Featured Box Set This Week!

Illicit by Stephanie Morris et. al

Over 20 illicit romances with the sexy heroes and strong heroines you crave!

Lose Yourself in the world of hot hookups, where the stories run from sexy to downright scandalous and the characters will leave you breathless. In these pages, you’ll find tantalizing romance, rekindled flames, and forbidden trysts.

From confident military men and suave billionaires to bad boy players, hot alphas, and more, you’re sure to find the illicit romance of your fantasies burning up these pages! These powerful, exciting men will keep you up all night and daydreaming all day!

Your favorite contemporary romance authors invite you to join them for twenty sizzling stories. Which of these scorching novels and novellas will have you hooked?

Don’t delay your pleasure.
One-click TODAY to Pre-Order!

Including Stories from:

New York Times bestselling author Calinda B
Sylvie Stewart
Stephanie Morris
USA Today bestselling author Allyson Lindt writing with Alexa Padgett
Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author Jeana E. Mann
Piper Lawson
J. Saman
Colleen Charles
Casey Hagen
E.S. Carter
Rylee Swann
Emma Tharp
Liz Matis
Heather C. Myers
Jan O’Hara
Maggie Carpenter
Tara L. Ames
Shannyn Leah
Megyn Ward
Ravena Tate
Alyssa Drake & Bella Emy
S.R. Watson & Ryan Stacks
Mia Kayla
Scarlett Avery
Kim Carmichael

Other Recommendations

Love Grind

by Devon Michaels

Description

I have everything I ever wanted with one exception – Stacy.

MILES

I’ve always been respectful of my elders, managing the family fortune for my parents and making me a billionaire by the time I was twenty-five.

But lately my love for music is all I can think about.

Until now.

When a simple night out busking leaves me in the emergency room, I find myself hurting in more than one way.

Her name is Stacy Mayer – a registered nurse.

Slender and athletic, she had the softest blue eyes that made me want to drown myself in.

I want her.

I need her in my life.

But I don’t think I can fix this one mistake to make her mine.

Stacy

My dad left us when I was sixteen and it has been me and mom since then.

I think that is why I turned to nursing to support my mother, and MMA to give me an outlet for my frustrations.

Between work, looking after mom and training for the next fight, I don’t need any distractions.

Especially one that is so damned good looking he could be plucked off the cover of GQ!

He probably has a stable of women clawing their way into his bedroom.

Good for them.

The last thing I need is a man like Miles Barker in my life.

I don’t need my heart broken again.

The Love Grind is a standalone romance with a little steam, a little heat and an HEA to melt even the coldest heart!

 

L.V. LEWIS’S AUDIOBOOKS ARE ALWAYS ON

SALE

(WITH THE PURCHASE OF THE E-BOOK ON AMAZON)!

Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever

only $19.95 or FREE with an Audible Trial Membership

Exit Strategy

only $19.95 or FREE with an Audible Trial Membership

Redeeming The Amazon

only $6.95 or FREE with an Audible Trial Membership

THE BEST WAY FOR YOU TO STAY CURRENT WITH MY BOOK NEWS:

“LV Lewis’s writing is only eclipsed by her love for her family…” — Early L.V. Lewis Biography

 

LV’s Monday Meanderings… August 27, 2018

Happy Monday Readers! I’ve created this regular newsletter since beginning my newest day job to keep me engaged with you on a regular basis. This will provide a way for you to know what’s going on with me even though I’m not camping out on Social Media anymore. I’ve got exciting news to share with you this Monday. Hope you all have a fabulous week!

Writing, Writing, Writing!

There is an “M” word that most authors dislike more than any we encounter in this industry. That word, my dear friends, is Marketing. For most of us, writing is the easy part (present company excluded). Writing is easy for those who have a unique talent for crafting great prose, for writing riveting dialogue, and drafting plots that will make your toes curl. I only experience this phenomenon sometimes. Usually my writing style is more like giving birth. The story gestates in my head for a while, then I endure the labor pains of putting pen to paper, until a story is birthed months, sometimes years later. No, I am not as prolific as many of my author friends. Writing does not come easy for me (probably because I second-guess myself so much, but that my dear friends, is a story for another time). And, if writing doesn’t come easy for me, one can easily deduce that marketing is a nightmare.

I’ve been around for a while, and actually I emerged on the scene on the other side of the self-publishing bubble. I wish so many times I’d taken the opportunity to self-publish when so many of my peers did, but I didn’t (babies, life, and career happened), and in fact, I got in right around the time the bubble burst. Many friendships had already been formed, acquaintances made, cliques formed, bloggers had chosen their favorites, and most of these early alliances never allowed outsiders in. So, my marketing efforts were done very much through trial and error. The industry changes rapidly. Paradigms are always shifting, so each and every time when I’d finally figured out how to do something in marketing, inevitably that thing was transitioning, and I was never able to quite get it right.

There are many book marketing sites at writers disposal these days. Unfortunately, there are more that don’t work than do, and unless you have a friend or colleague who has used a site and can give you some feedback, it’s trail and error, my dear friends. And trial and error is okay if you have a marketing budget to speak of, but if you’re like me right now, you don’t even have a great budget, let alone a marketing one. I simply cannot afford to spend any money that won’t yield a return on investment, so I’ve been very picky lately. Or I’ve tried to be, and sometimes I still get it wrong. Which hurts my pocketbook so much, it takes weeks to recoup just the tiny bit of disposable income I could find to do marketing.

Recently, ladies and gentlemen, I submitted two of my books for a Bookbub. If you’re not familiar with Bookbub, you absolutely need to be. They are the premiere marketing site for books for authors, and the permiere site for readers looking to find new books. This is yet another marketing site I found out about later than I would have liked, but their return on investment has remained steady despite the shifting paradigms of the book industry. Most authors know that a Bookbub ad will yield dividends that it would take 15 or more author marketing venues to yield (and that is a conservative estimate). They are pricey as f#%k, but they get the job done.

I’m excited to tell you that out of the two books I submitted for a Bookbub, one of them was successful! So at the end of September, my book, The Venture Capitalist, Tristan’s point of view of Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever, will be featured on Bookbub, and I’m over the moon about it. So, stay tuned. I’ll make a big announcement when it gets closer to the time. In the meantime, if you’re not following me on Bookbub, I hope you will, because not only will they keep you apprised of my new books as they come out, they will share my book recommendations, and sales of my books and others, if we’re lucky enough to snag a Bookbub ad. So click on the Bookbub icon below and follow me there. You will be glad you did!

Speaking of writing, if you want to read any of my books while you’re waiting on my new stuff to publish, you can find all my books here, where most of them are $0.99: LV Lewis books!

Briar by Ripley Prosperina

My Review

I am part of the original Twilight Fandom, and I have a thing for Vampires. So sue me!

Anywho, I was quite taken by this Reverse Harem spin on the genre. Ripley Prosperina whose other RH books I’ve read really did her thing with this one! Move over J. R. Ward, Ripley Prosperina has created a quartet of Vampires that I love almost as much as your Black Dagger Brotherhood. Hudson, Valen, Sylvain and Marcus, Oh My Effing God! Listen, I guess I need to write a real review of this book, because, really that is the purpose of this venue. Right?

Okay, so Briar Hale is allergic to sunlight, or so she thinks. Her diagnosed condition is EPP (and I won’t even try to remember the medical term here). Whenever she allows any ultraviolet rays to touch her skin she blisters and burns. I’m talking serious second and third degree burns. In fact she’d probably die within a few minutes were she to remain exposed. She moves to Boston to attend Boston College for her Master’s Degree where she attends a symposium for one Dr. Hudson Nors who is the foremost authority on her condition. An accident reaching for a fallen glove causes her to be burned and Dr. Nors and his friend, Marcus come to her rescue. Unbeknownst to Briar they share a bond of brotherhood that she learns about later.

One by one, she meets the four brothers and early on doesn’t know about their connection until she gets lost in the city and decides to take a detour through a wooded area. When she is saved by Sylvain, one of the quartet, from a fate I don’t want to describe here, she befriends them each in turn, despite her rocky start with Dr. Nors (the reclusive and anti-social genius). Soon, Briar learns why Dr. Nors has been notoriously antisocial, and why Marcus, Sylvain, and Valen can’t seem to stay away from her.

As they each seek her out, she develops a caring for each of them she’s never known, since her condition has kept her from having even rudimentary friendships. Despite her early accident and brush with death, she’s determined to stay in Boston and finish the education she’s desired. The brothers become convinced she is fated to be theirs, but she isn’t privy to their feelings until a sinister and deadly threat from their past learns of their connection and his hellbound on removing the sickly girl from the equation.

The story ramps up from there. While Briar’s story is the first and contains all the world-building, it doesn’t detract from the story at all. And, because I knew this was a trilogy, I wasn’t befuddled or unhappy by the way this first story ended. You will be drawn in as I was by how well Ms. Prosperina drew these characters and Briar’s reaction to each of the brothers. Their back stories as are fascinating as the current conflict they find themselves in and I believe you will be as taken as I was by these Reverse-Harem Vampires in this series.

Check out their follow-up books below:

***Briar is Book 1 in the Midnight’s Crown series. A slow-burn reverse harem romance series***

Book 2, Shadow of Thorns

Book 3, Diadem of Blood & Bones

THE BEST WAY FOR YOU TO STAY CURRENT WITH MY BOOK NEWS:

“Book marketing is like opening doors for your readers to find you, not a stick you hit them with.” – Heather Hart

LV’s Monday Meanderings… August 20, 2018

Happy Monday fellow Meanderers! I’ve created this regular newsletter since beginning my newest day job to keep me engaged with you on a regular basis. This will provide a way for you to know what’s going on with me even though I’m not camping out on Social Media anymore. I read a fabulous women’s fiction novel this week, which I can’t wait to share with you. Hope your week turns out great!

Writing, Writing, Writing!

Romance is the primary genre which I read and write. I never tire of authors putting their unique spins on a hero and heroine’s love stories. I have loved to read since the days of learning how in pre-school and elementary school, where I read everything from Dr. Zeuss’s classics to The Box Car Children, and Little House on The Prairie. My entry into the world of romance began when I was just a pre-teen when I began to read my older sister’s books. She read steamy paperback novels (Harlequin) and true story magazines, which I daresay gave me my entree into learning about the “birds and the bees.” Thankfully, this same sister gave me “the talk,” so I wouldn’t be stupid when it came to interacting with the opposite sex. As a teenager, I began to make my own book choices and I was able to read an eclectic mix of literature which is what has shaped me to be the author I am today.

As most of you well know, I began my career by writing an erotic romance series. I followed that up with erotic women’s fiction, then dabbled in paranormal and science fiction. However, regardless of what I write, there will most likely always be a romance that figures somewhere prominently in the story. I have always been a romantic at heart despite real life not always mirroring the fiction I read. I always hold out hope that eventually my significant other will get how to be as romantic as my book heroes.

In this Monday’s Meanderings, I’m sharing something from all the genres in which I write all at once: women’s fiction, contemporary romance, and paranormal. Hope something from these offerings tickle your fancy.

Speaking of writing, if you want to read any of my books while you’re waiting on my new stuff to publish, you can find all my books here, where most of them are $0.99: LV Lewis books!

 Not Her Daughter by Rea Frey

My Review

It has been a while since I’ve read such a gut-wrenching novel which blurs the lines between right and wrong so skillfully. The story Frey weaves moves from present day to the past to current with a whip-smart plotting style that keeps the reader guessing what’s going to happen next. Sarah Walker is for all intents and purposes, a success. Her business, which produces educational games for schools all over the world, is growing in leaps and bounds. However, she has just gone through a breakup with her boyfriend Ethan, which has left her heart in tatters. As the author gives us glimpses into what transpired between the couple, Sarah is also remembering snatches of her own childhood, which has largely informed who she has become as an adult.

As Sarah navigates being newly single, and the only child of a father who is just as heartbroken as she is from the wife who left him years ago, her situation becomes even more dicey when she encounters Emma Townsend, a little girl who reminds her so much of herself, Sarah feels compelled to rescue this child from the untenable family dynamic she is drowning in. From that point, the story gets even more complicated. And with that, I’ll leave you to discover the rest for yourself, because I promise you, this story will evoke emotions in you that you won’t be able to parse without going all in with Sarah, Emma, and an ensemble of characters that are at once well-developed and grounded enough to make you feel as if you’re living this story right along with them.

Not Her Daughter is precisely the kind of women’s fiction that makes me experience “all the feels,” like I’m immersed in a real-life situation which I’m unable to extricate myself from without the author’s expert plot twists giving me a believable way out.

Love Desired: Rock and Roll Heiress, Book 1  by Kelli McCracken

Description

Business and pleasure were the main ingredients of a disastrous relationship. Mia Brooks learned that lesson years ago. Now she’s going against her better judgment to manage a struggling band, even though doing so could unravel the thin thread holding together her heart. Ayden McAllister refuses to be any woman’s fool. The scars from his last relationship were still raw, but the pain led to some of his bands’ best songs. With one last chance to find success, he must put aside his personal grievance with women to work with his bands’ new manager, something that would be much easier to do if she wasn’t affecting his heart the way she was his body.

The Unrivaled’s Witch by Laura Marie

Description

Life was as ordinary as it got for a 28-year-old single witch. Arthur one of the most powerful wizards in history has his eyes set on her.

Arthur Hamilton, the last wizard in history to become an Unrivaled vowed to serve the Order of the Unrivaled. Reborn centuries after a grave betrayal, Arthur has tracked down the soulmate he once lost. He must make a choice, between the oath he swore to uphold for all time, and the greatest love he’s ever known. But with a dark wizard hunting him once again, Arthur must decide fast.

Rebecca Chavez, a reborn witch, has never known love in this life. It has been years since her circle of friends has encountered anyone with Magic in their blood. Rebecca’s emotional shield has protected her from being hurt, that is until Arthur came looking to reignite their fire.

He’s mysterious, powerful and ready to stand between darkness and his witch!

THE BEST WAY FOR YOU TO STAY CURRENT WITH MY BOOK NEWS:

“I write to get the happy ending I sometimes feel is eluding me.” – Debora Dennis

LV’s Monday Meanderings… August 13, 2018

My Monday Meanderings for today come through physical pain. I am taking Aleve because I overdid it this weekend. I must remember, I’m no longer 20-something, a fact which my daughter reminds me of on a regular basis. LOL. As I’m sure you’re aware by now, I’ve created this weekly newsletter since beginning my newest day job (and my weekend moonlighting) to keep me engaged with you on a regular basis. This will provide a way for you to know what’s going on with me even though I’m not camping out on Social Media anymore. I don’t think Aleve has any side effects that will affect my ability to meander, but who knows…

Writing, Writing, Writing!

This weekend, I began the process of rewriting portions of my novella. It had to be done, because things changed under circumstances I’m unable to divulge right now, but my intentions are to make it better than it was. Sometime when stories sit a while, authors realize (with the help of first line beta readers) that the plot sometimes doesn’t work the way you originally envisioned it. Thus, the need for re-tweaking. The evolution of said novella shall not be televised, or otherwise shared since this process does not make for fascinating blog or newsletter fodder. However, I will share when it’s complete. Again.

This novella has a shiny new cover and the summary will be tweaked to match the re-tweaked plot. As I mentioned before, I’ll be rolling the cover out pretty close to my book release. In approximately three months, there will be marketing, more beta reading, and lots of fun stuff going on before it can see the light of day. Parker Cavanaugh, my hero in this new novella, is chomping at the bit to meet you all!

Speaking of writing, if you want to read any of my books while you’re waiting on my new stuff to publish, you can find all my books here, where most of them are on SALE for $0.99: LV Lewis books!

 

Thrillers from The Past (aka Recent Re-reads)!

Back in the day before I even thought about self-publishing, a friend introduced me to M.J. Rose’s Butterfield Institute Series, which includes the books The Halo Effect, The Delilah Complex, and The Venus Fix. Last week I re-read these wonderful books because I haven’t read a series of books with as compelling a premise as this one in quite some time, and I was really kind of missing Detective Noah Jordain, the sexy-as-sin cop who becomes the love interest for our heroine, Dr. Morgan Snow, sex therapist extraordinaire. Every single time I’ve read these books, I insert Harry Connick, Jr. into my mind as Detective Noah Jordain. This guy would be perfect were these books to be adapted to the Big Screen. I know no other actor who could believably pull this off, so I’m sticking with Harry, whom I love with the white-hot intensity of a thousand burning suns! But I digress. (Fans self.)

So, if you’re looking for a series that is a thriller which has romantic suspense, and a healthy dose of believablility, you can’t go wrong with these books. Although written in 2005-2006 timeframe, they are still a relevant page-turner worthy enough to read now!

 

In Death Series by J.D. Robb

If you’ve ever had an in depth conversation with me about books, you might know that my favorite futuristic police procedural novels are the “In Death Series,” by J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts to folks who love her romances and genre fiction).

I’ve been reading these books forever (and I won’t say how long because I’m always looking for ways not to date myself). Anywho, Robb’s In Death Series follows the cases of Detective Eve Dallas, a New York cop from the years circa 2058 and beyond. The heroine gets her surname from the city in which she was born because she lost her only remaining parent in an horrific fashion and she hadn’t been given a real name. Her backstory is as fascinating as the cases chronicled in the In Death Series. You will be drawn in by J. D. Robb’s taut prose and riveting plots.

And if you like black-haired Irishmen, you may just fall in love with Eve’s better half, Roarke. I know I did, which is probably what kept me reading the series even more than Eve Dallas herself. Just saying!

SUMMARY

Together for the first time—the first five novels in the #1 New York Times bestselling In Death series, hailed as “a perfect balance of suspense, futuristic police procedural and steamy romance” (Publishers Weekly).

Join New York City homicide detective Eve Dallas as she sets her sights on some elusive suspects—including a compelling Irishman named Roarke in…

NAKED IN DEATH
GLORY IN DEATH
IMMORTAL IN DEATH
RAPTURE IN DEATH
CEREMONY IN DEATH

The In Death Series has been grouped into books of five for those who prefer to buy them a group at a time. You can still buy the series standalones, if that is your preference.

THE BEST WAY FOR YOU TO STAY CURRENT WITH MY BOOK NEWS:

“Fiction is the lie through which we tell the truth.”
― Albert Camus

Two Books for Less Than The Price of One! – Jungle Fever Duology Sale and Giveaway! #ASMSG

Jungle Fever Duology SALE and GIVEAWAY!

As I mentioned in my Monday Meanderings this week, I’m featuring one of my books today because Jungle Fever Duology is on SALE for $0.99! Yes, that’s right. The book which usually retails for $2.99 is on a Kindle Countdown Sale today, August 3, 2018!  This is a boxed set of my Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever and Exit Strategy books, so you’ll be getting two books for less than the price of one! How novel is that? If you’ve not read these two books, you’re in for a treat, and even if you’ve read, why not consider giving the set to a friend or family member who likes steamy romance novels. You can’t go wrong at this price!

Summary

Keisha Beale, a street-wise Chicago south-sider two years out of DePaul University, is a quarter million dollars in start-up capital away from realizing her dream of owning a recording studio/record store. She takes the place of her more business-savvy partner in a meeting with Tristan White himself, the venture capitalist they’ve targeted to fund their business.

A bi-racial–African American and Brazilian–woman with a troubled past, Keisha has been so focused on her business pursuits that her love life has been non-existent. Tristan White is the devastatingly handsome, 32-year old CEO of White Enterprises, the firm he built using only the inheritance his mother left him to prove to his father he had the mettle to do it alone. He comes from a long line of wealth, and lives the life of a “one-percenter” on Chicago’s Gold Coast. Tristan is accustomed to controlling every aspect of his life given his birth into a world of privilege. When Keisha and Tristan’s worlds collide, sparks fly, and a
fever is ignited in them both that they have never experienced before. It turns out they each have secrets, but together, in the unorthodox arrangement Tristan proposes, they discover passions they never knew they had.

GIVEAWAY

There’s a Giveaway Below, which also begins today. I’m giving away a $10 Amazon Gift Card, and 5 Sets of Audiobooks (Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever and Exit Strategy) to 5 Lucky individuals!

At just nintey-nine pennies on August 3-4, 2018, you are getting a steal of deal for these two books (and my bestselling books, I might add). Never fear, if you miss clicking the link on August 3 or 4th, you can still get the book for $1.99 on August 5-6, but if you wait any later to click, you’ll get it for its regular price of $2.99. Kindle Countdowns are just what the name suggests, a countdown going from it’s lowest price to highest.

 

THE BEST WAY FOR YOU TO STAY CURRENT WITH MY BOOK NEWS:

JUNGLE FEVER DUOLOGY SALE GIVEAWAY!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If You’d rather listen to the books, they are available on Audible as Standalones (Get them FREE with the Audible Romance Package)!:

LV’s Monday Meanderings… July 30, 2018

Bonjour! Comment allez vous, Readers? My French is so rusty, I really shouldn’t go there, but sometimes the mind meanders… These Monday Meanderings are making me bold! As you’re all aware by know, you know that I created this regular newsletter since beginning my newest day job to keep me engaged with you on a regular basis. This will provide a way for you to know what’s going on with me even though I’m not camping out on Social Media anymore. This week, I have exciting news about a book sale to share with you! See below.

Writing, Writing, Writing!

I have so many ideas for new books, but so little time! 🙁 This makes me sad, because I’d love it if I were able to write all the time like many of my colleagues do. But alas, that isn’t my lot in life right now, so I must carry on.

Work is still busy, and I’ve just hired a new employee, so there’s that I have to contend with as well. so while writing is slow, I am also working on some marketing and new covers. Yay! In addition to my backlist I’ll be getting a cover made for the novella I just finished. Again, if any of you know good cover creators who won’t charge me like I’m a New York Times Bestseller, I’d really appreciate a recommendation. I’m also thinking about what the title will be and drafting my summary, so I’m a busy little beaver!

Speaking of writing, if you want to read one of my books while you’re waiting on my new stuff to publish, you can find all my books here: LV Lewis books!

Jungle Fever Duology by LV Lewis

I’m featuring one of my books this week because Jungle Fever Duology is going on SALE for $0.99! Yes, that’s right. The book which usually retails for $2.99 will be on a Kindle Countdown Sale beginning on August 3, 2018!  This is a boxed set of my Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever and Exit Strategy books, so you’ll be getting two books for less than the price of one! How novel is that? So mark your calendars. If you’ve not read these two books, you’re in for a treat, and even if you’ve read, why not consider giving the set to a friend or family member who likes steamy romance novels. You can’t go wrong at this price!

Keisha Beale, a street-wise Chicago south-sider two years out of DePaul University, is a quarter million dollars in start-up capital away from realizing her dream of owning a recording studio/record store. She takes the place of her more business-savvy partner in a meeting with Tristan White himself, the venture capitalist they’ve targeted to fund their business.

A bi-racial–African American and Brazilian–woman with a troubled past, Keisha has been so focused on her business pursuits that her love life has been non-existent. Tristan White is the devastatingly handsome, 32-year old CEO of White Enterprises, the firm he built using only the inheritance his mother left him to prove to his father he had the mettle to do it alone. He comes from a long line of wealth, and lives the life of a “one-percenter” on Chicago’s Gold Coast. Tristan is accustomed to controlling every aspect of his life given his birth into a world of privilege. When Keisha and Tristan’s worlds collide, sparks fly, and a
fever is ignited in them both that they have never experienced before. It turns out they each have secrets, but together, in the unorthodox arrangement Tristan proposes, they discover passions they never knew they had.

NOTE: There’s a Giveaway Below, which begins during the sale. I’m giving away a $10 Amazon Gift Card, and 5 Sets of Audiobooks (Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever and Exit Strategy) to 5 Lucky individuals!

At just nintey-nine pennies on August 3-4, 2018, you are getting a steal of deal for these two books (and my bestselling books, I might add). Never fear, if you miss clicking the link on August 3 or 4th, you can still get the book for $1.99 on August 5-6, but if you wait any later to click, you’ll get it for its regular price of $2.99. Kindle Countdowns are just what the name suggests, a countdown going from it’s lowest price to highest:

Since I’m going there (into the BDSM world), I thought I might include a few other books in this week’s meanderings that brave this subject matter. I recently read a trilogy of books written by Kristen Ashley set in the world of The Honey, an exclusive sex club run by the mysterious Aryas. The books are what I call “grown folks BDSM.” These no-holds-barred books will take you deeper into the lifestyle than any others, so hold onto your hats, ladies and gentlemen, it’s going to be a bumpy, and quite possibly, “painful” ride (but in a good way!). LOL

The Deep End, The Farthest Edge, and The Greatest Risk (The Honey Series) by Kristen Ashley

THE DEEP END

Enter a decadent sensual world where gorgeous alpha males are committed to fulfilling a woman’s every desire…

Olivier isn’t sure what he’s gotten himself into when he joins the Honey Club, only that a dark part of him hungers for the lifestyle offered by this exclusive club. Here, no boundary will be left untested…and one’s deepest fantasies will become an exquisite reality.

When Amélie invites Olivier to surrender, she gives the alpha submissive what he craves. Soon they both find themselves falling harder than they ever anticipated—but as their connection deepens, the truth about Olivier’s past could destroy everything…

Gripping and seductive, The Deep End is the first book in a sensational new series from bestselling author Kristen Ashley.

THE FARTHEST EDGE

Step into the Honey Club, where every sensual boundary will be tested in search of the ultimate pleasure…
Branch doesn’t exist. Living off the grid, he’s looking for a way to forget his past and the guilt that plagues him. But no woman has ever been able to bring him to the edge he craves.
After a traumatic experience of her own, Evangeline stepped away from the decadent world of the Honey Club. But when she gets Branch’s offer—to play without boundaries or commitments—it’s too tempting for her to refuse.
As their passion ignites, Evangeline and Branch push each other to their farthest limit, fulfilling their darkest desires while falling harder and deeper than they ever imagined.

THE GREATEST RISK

A woman unable to connect, struggling to hide another part of her. A man burning to learn her truth, and make her whole. Through explosive passion and deep exploration, they are about to take the greatest risk of all. But will they be able to take that leap, and come out on the other side together? In this next passionate novel in the Honey series, New York Times bestselling author Kristen Ashley delivers a stunningly romantic and intensely sexy novel that will stay with you long after you turn the final page.

These are each very INTENSE books! The couples featured all come with their own sets of flaws, baggage, and problems to work through and you get a front row seat to see just how they handle the trifecta through the boundaries set in the exclusive Honey Club, and lots and lots of sex! Yet, the sex never seems superfluous, it just kind of happens like it tends to between two people who are attracted to one another and are falling in love. So, if you can handle the serious BDSM play upon entering The Honey Club, I think you just might love these books!

THE ORIGINAL SINNERS SERIES by TIFFANY REISZ

Return to the book that started it all—the sophisticated, edgy and devastatingly sexy beginning to Tiffany Reisz’s Original Sinners series…

In the subsequent books we follow Nora (Eleanor), Søren, Kingsley, Zach and a host of other characters (and from differing points of view) through Nora Sutherlin’s world. This is some serious stuff right here, folks. Don’t sleep on this series. It is complete, so no waiting on the next installment. Here they are listed in order (and a graphic, in case you want to buy them as a set):

 

The Siren

Notorious erotica author Nora Sutherlin thought she knew everything about being pushed to your limits. But in the world of BDSM, where passion is pain, nothing is ever that simple.

The Angel

Dominatrix Nora Sutherlin is doing something utterly out of character: hiding. It’s a summer that will prove the old adage: love hurts. And no safe word can protect the heart.

The Prince

Two worlds of wealth and passion call to Nora Sutherlin and, whichever one she chooses, it will be the hardest decision she will ever have to make. Unless someone makes it for her…

The Mistress

There’s punishment—and then there’s vengeance… Nora Sutherlin is in handcuffs, held captive by two men. Under different circumstances, she would enjoy the situation immensely, but her captors aren’t interested in play. Or pity.

And these are the final installments of The Original Sinners Series:

 

The Saint

Before she became Manhattan’s most famous dominatrix, Nora Sutherlin was merely a girl called Eleanor…

The King

Cunning. Sex. Pure nerve. Only this potent threesome can raise him to his rightful place as ruler of Manhattan’s kink kingdom.

The Virgin

The lure of the forbidden, the temptation to sin and the price of passion have never been higher, and Eleanor and Kingsley will have to pay it if they ever want to go home again.

The Queen

Once upon a time, Nora and Søren made a fateful deal—if he gave her everything, she would give him forever. The time has finally come to keep their promises…

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A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies… The man who never reads lives only one. — George R. R. Martin

LV’s Monday Meanderings… July 16, 2018

Greetings, Readers! I hope you’re enjoying my Monday Meanderings. I’ve created this regular newsletter since beginning my newest day job to keep me engaged with you on a regular basis. This will provide a way for you to know what’s going on with me even though I’m not camping out on Social Media anymore.

Writing, Writing, Writing!

Most of the time, I’m happy to be a part of the writing industry, I truly am. In a perfect world, people who agree to do something for you will do it, and do it with excellence. My writing world hasn’t been so excellent lately. Mainly, because I’m dealing with a person who purports to be professional in their field who isn’t. I’ve written a bit about this in the past here: Am I Too Nice For My Own Good?  But I digress. Recently, I hired someone to do a project for me. An agreement was made and I was promised my project would be complete earlier than I anticipated. However, the first milestone was never reached and an excuse was given, which I accepted because “we’re all human, and life happens, right?” Then the next deadline was missed, but I was given part of the project (just a tiny part). Then I’m thinking, surely the next deadline will be met. Right? Didn’t happen. A month after this professional accepted my project, I still don’t have it. I have been promised yet again it will be ready this weekend. I’m waiting with bated breath. Not! I have no faith that the project will be ready this weekend when only one third of it has been done in a month!

I try to be a nice and understanding person, but writing is my business, and I try to maintain a consistency of quality which begets the title of professional. I’m human, too, so I make mistakes. I have a job that pays my bills and I have my writing business (which currently pays no bills. Hahaha!). In my writing business, I miss deadlines, but rather than make excuses, I own my mistakes, apologize to my readers, and move forward. What I’ve found that happens a lot with the “professionals” I use to support my business is an inconsistency in quality, inefficiency in providing services, and an unwillingness to own their mistakes and make it right.

Is it too much to ask to expect that when someone promises you a project will be done, that it will be done on time? I don’t think so. How do I mitigate situations like these? I guess I need to manage my expectations better, and if that makes me a bitch, then so be it. I am tired of people taking my kindness for weakness and giving me lackluster projects and services for my hard-earned money. In the future, if someone doesn’t uphold the letter of our agreement, I won’t be using their services anymore. Contracts will be iron-clad with language in them that support liquidated damages when milestones and deadlines aren’t met. Simply put, I’m going to be kicking ass and taking names! Names that will be dead to me moving forward in my perfect writing world.

Speaking of writing, if you want to read one of my books while you’re waiting on my new stuff to publish, you can find all my books here: LV Lewis books!

New Genre: Reverse-Harem (It’s Raining Men, Hallelujah!)

Over the past year, I’ve been reading a new romance genre called Reverse Harem (or RH, because we writers love our acroynyms, don’t we?). I heard about this genre about the same time that a very good writer friend mine began writing her own Reverse Harem novels (I’m looking at you, Angel Lawson). If you’re not familiar with it, Reverse Harem novels are those where you have a female protagonist who is the central focus or love interest of three or more male protagonists in a novel. Yes, RH goes there! The idea of RH first began in anime and manga and eventually spread to the romance genre, which has been growing like wildfire.

Nys Glover, author of The Airluds Trilogy, explained RH in the best way I’ve seen yet: “Men have had their harem fantasies forever. I think women have finally given themselves permission to entertain such fantasies, too. But unlike the male fantasy, a woman’s fantasy isn’t so much about sex as it is about romance. It’s the idea of being loved and cherished by more than one man, and protected and supported, too. The steamier end of the market covers the hot sex that’s possible, but it’s not necessary. There are a lot of YA reverse-harem books that contain no sex. In a way it’s like taking popularity to the next level.”

Generally, I am not an early adopter of anything. I tend to be the type who likes to wait and see if something is going to “take” before I go all in. Well, now that I’ve seen that RH is likely here to stay, I’ve been reading some of the stories to see if this genre might be a good fit for me to write (the jury is still out on this, by the way, but you’ll be the first to know if I decide to wade into the waters of RH). My reading taste in Reverse Harem has been primarily the paranormal lane. I find I can suspend disbelief easier if there’s a paranormal slant to the books. There is now a very robust community of authors and readers in the RH genre, and there are sub-genres in the main genre. Who knew? So, if you’re interested in testing the waters reading-wise, I have some recommendations for you.

 

 

The Best Reverse Harem Series’ I’ve Read Lately!

One of the first Reverse Harem series I read was Curse of The Gods by Jaymin Eve and Jane Washington (Trickery, Persuasion, Seduction and Strength). These novels have a fair amount of world building you have to slog through, and Willa Knight, the main character has quite an inferiority complex, partly due to the lot in life to which she was born, and partly due to the people around her. Although she is likely the clumsiest woman ever born in her home of Minastol. When a mix-up of epic proportions lands her in Blesswood, where Sols (Gods in training) reside, she is forced to keep up the ruse, or die. When she is tasked to serve the Abcurse brothers, her tenuous position in Blesswood becomes even more of a challenge. If you’re a fan of God mythology with a twist, you might find Curse of The Gods to your liking.

 

 

Tate James’ Kit Davenport Series was my next foray into Reverse Harems. This series has a total of five books currently, so no need to feel like you’re dangling on a cliffhanger anytime soon (The Vixen’s Lead, The Dragon’s Wing, The Tiger’s Ambush, The Viper’s Nest, and The Crow’s Murder). Heroine Kit Davenport is a world-renowned thief only known by her secret identity, the fox. She is clever, cunning, and has abilities she’s trying to master, but is so busy evading her captors, she’s unable to wield them well. Her driving force is vengeance against those who’ve wronged her, but as she gets closer to that goal, she picks up a group of allies who give her something she’s never had before: acceptance and love. Each book takes her on a different journey to discovering the truth. Tate James is a master at divulging just enough to keep you reading from one book to the next. Once you read the stunning climax, though, you’ll be thoroughly satisfied with the outcome.

 

 

My good friend, Angel Lawson, has made Reverse Harem her writing niche in recent months, and I’ve read all of her Raven Queen’s Harem Series (Raven’s Mark, Ebony Rising, Black Magic, Obsidian Fire, Onyx Eclipse and Midnight’s End). All six books are complete, so no need to wait on any followup. Morgan, an aspiring author, receives a scholarship to NYU graduate school, where she is set to realize her dream as a published author writing books about some events from her childhood. Unbeknownst to her, these events may just be more real than she could ever have imagined. Her housemates in her scholarship program just happen to be five of the hottest artists she’s ever met: Sam the photographer, Damien the welder, Bunny the painter, Clinton the musician, and Dylan the historian. Her destiny may rest upon seeking their assistance.

Another RH series by Angel Lawson are The Supers of Project 12. As a lover of all things Marvel and DC, I absolutely adore this series, because I’m a comic book nerd from the old days. If you love Stan Lee’s offerings as much as I do, I’m sure you’ll love The Supers, too. Astrid, the heroine, is the product of a state run group home, where she remembers fantastical things that happened for her and some of the other members of the home. In early adulthood, by day she is helping her guardian and mentor to run a program to train young people who desire to work for the government as operatives. By night, she is a super hero who rids their town of bad guys, until things go awry and she’s thrust into a leading role, and her past meets her present in surprising ways. Some welcome and sexy, and others unwelcome and threatening. Astrid builds a team of loyal allies whom she may have to enlist to take down one or more of their own. Lots of kick-ass action and a sexy reverse-harem take on the super heroes trope.

As a woman of color, I had to find some of these with heroines that look like me, so if you’re also a woman of color and would like to see some heroines of color in this genre, you might want to check out Ripley Prosperina’s The Searchers Series, beginning with Finding Honor. The reading order for the series is Finding Honor, Finding Nora, Finding Valor, and Finding Truth. Nora Leslie, the heroine in this series gets caught up in a tragedy which could be ripped form the headlines of today’s news. The substitute teacher is first regaled as a hero for saving the lives of her students, but then she is linked to a troubled young man who was likewise a ward of the state as she once was, and quickly becomes a suspect. Her introduction to law student, Ryan Valore, and his roommates may just help her find the redemption and love she seeks.

 

Another Series starring a heroine of color is the An Obscure Magic Series by Viola Grace. The first three books in the series, One Part Human, Two Parts Demon, Three Parts Fey, follow heroine, Beneficia (Benny) Ganger, who gets more than she bargains for when she’s subjected to a ride-along with three agents of the XIA, the eXtranormal Investigation Agency (who also happen to be a vampire, a shifter, and a fey). But Benny may be harboring secret abilities of her own, the likes of which the XIA haven’t seen. The world building in this intrigued me and I just had to figure out what was going on. I think you’ll be likewise roped in. While this series has additional books, they are not featuring Benny, so I haven’t read them yet, but I’m sure Ms. Viola Grace has put just as much skill into the later books that she did in the first three.

Mark my words! You will be absolutely thrilled, positively entertained, and extremely turned on by all of these enthralling books!

  

“Good books don’t give up all their secrets at once.” – Stephen King

LV’s Monday Meanderings…

Hello All! It’s time again for my Monday Meanderings. I’ve created this regular newsletter since beginning my newest day job to keep me engaged with you on a regular basis. This will provide a way for you to know what’s going on with me even though I’m not camping out on Social Media anymore.

 

Writing, Writing, Writing!

My novella has approximately another couple of weeks of lying around until I feel like my eyes will be able to spot some of its glaring issues. According to Voltaire, writing may be the painting of the voice, but sometimes the painting can be blurred by unintentional strokes that need a bit more refining until what you see is the artwork that was intended by the painter. A few of you have responded to my request for beta readers, but I could still use a few more so I can get a good number of first reactions to my story. This is integral to a writer’s publication process, because prolific readers know exactly what works and what doesn’t and can point these things out to us before we release our little darlings into the world. So, if you’re interested in beta reading and offering me helpful constructive criticism, email me at lv.lewis148@gmail.com.  I’m hoping to compile a list of beta readers that I can use on a regular basis to help me make my writing as sharp as it needs to be to compete with other heavy hitters in the industry right now. This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship and a long-lasting partnership with you in my writing career. As I’ve shared the past several weeks, I’ve been working on a novella for a contest. It involves a feisty, badass heroine who doesn’t take crap from her sexy-as-sin boss, despite their insane chemistry. They work in the culturally relevant cryptocurrency industry and bond on a work-related road trip. Although this is for a contest and I can’t share right away, if it doesn’t win, I will most definitely be sharing it with you via publication on Amazon for sure, and possibly some other venues. Stay tuned! However, if you want to read one of my books while you’re waiting on my new stuff, you can find all my books here: LV Lewis books!

 

Fourth of July Road Trip Read!

The hubby and I took a road trip for the holiday. It wasn’t very long (approximately six hours), so I figured we could do this. Right? Wrong! My idea and his idea of a successful road trip are vastly different. Literary girl here wants only to immerse herself into a good book, while he becomes a “Chatty Kathy.” I cannot tell you how many times I wanted to reach over and throttle my husband when he distracted me from a pivotal scene in my book. I was reading Jackal, which some of you may know is the second installment in Tarryn Fisher and Willow Aster’s “The End of Men,” series. OMG! If you are a fan of The Handmaid’s Tale, you might just like this story about a society where fertile men are almost extinct, and a dozen or so men tasked with impregnating the regions’ women are treated like rock stars (or prisoners in guilded cages, if you will). The first installment is Folsom’s story and the beginning of the revolution begun by heroine Gwen Allison, who finds that her job for Genome Y may have been the fulfillment of her life for a time, but loving an End Man has turned that on its head, and sparked a revolution that rocks all the regions. Jackal is a continuation of that story, and the next installment will be Kaspar’s story. However, I digress. My husband may have distracted me from my book more than I would have liked during our road trip, but nothing kept me from finishing Jackal’s story. His love interest, Prima Ballerina, Phoenix Moyo, literally brought one of the wildest End Men to his knees and their involvement in the ever-growing revolution made this a story that was well worth the time spent reading it while on the road. Fisher and Aster have created quite a world here, and I don’t think it’s one that will disappoint.

The Best BDSM Series I’ve Read Lately!

Sierra Simone’s New Camelot Series not only surprised the hell out of me, it brought my love for three very divergent things together in a BDSM series. It combined my fascination for the iconic Kennedy family and all things political with my love for Arthurian legend and Greek mythology into a very sexy, cerebral read. Sierra Simone is definitely going to be one I will continue to watch now that I’ve been introduced into her eclectic writing style. In American Queen, Simone relates the story of Greer Galloway, a Guinevere cum Jackie-esque character who is wooed by the President of the United States through his best friend and Vice President, Embry Moore. Thus begins this cautionary, yet brilliantly crafted tale of the New Camelot Series. The effortless way in which Simone weaves Camelot, Arthurian legend, Greek mythology and even the Little Prince into these stories just makes my heart palpitate. Nothing in this BDSM series seemed superfluous or gratuitous, but it all felt totally necessary to the stories given all the classics from which the plots were derived. American Prince is Book 2 of the series, and American King is the final book of the series. I was so thoroughly drawn into their world and tethered there by the beautiful turns of phrase and the author’s commanding grasp of story structure to the final stunning end of the series. You will be thoroughly enthralled, extremely entertained, and supremely turned on by these breathtaking books!

  

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” – Maya Angelou

LV’s Monday Meanderings…

Hello All! Here’s another episode of my Monday Meanderings, since beginning my newest day job has kept me from engaging with you as much as I’d like to. This will provide a way for you to know what’s going on with me even though I’m not camping out on Social Media.

Writing, Writing, Writing!

My novella is in the home stretch and I’ll be selecting an editor to hone this 20K piece very soon. I’m also going to hire a proofreader and engage a few of you readers to beta read so I can get first reactions to it. This part of the process is always fun, so if you’re interested in beta reading and offering me helpful constructive criticism, email me at lv.lewis148@gmail.com.  This could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship and a long-lasting partnership with you in my writing career. As I’ve shared the past several weeks, I’ve been working on a novella for a contest. It involves a feisty, badass heroine who doesn’t take crap from her sexy-as-sin boss, despite their insane chemistry. They work in the culturally relevant cryptocurrency industry and bond on a work-related road trip. Although this is for a contest and I can’t share right away, if it doesn’t win, I will most definitely be sharing it with you via publication on Amazon for sure, and possibly some other venues. Stay tuned!

 

Who’s Up For A Game of Cards?

My husband has been hosting card parties at our house over the last month. His friends love to play Spades and Tonk, and I am usually the odd woman out, because I’ve never been a card player. My siblings all play cards, but it never held my interest. I am a book person, hence, this is why I became an author. Books are my passion, not cards! Well, I’ll have you know, they roped me into playing a few games and now I’m looking up rules and trying my best to learn to play well. You know, I’m trying to “enter my spouse’s world,” and all that. Right? So, hubby says to me one night after dinner, “Baby, come on let’s play Tonk.” Several hands later, I’m whipping him like he’s stolen something. This did not go over well. My winnings have to be a fluke. “Beginniner’s luck,” he insists. I politely let him know that in everything I’ve read about Tonk, only a part of the game is luck of the draw, it is also about “skill.” Now you know he is still not convinced of that, so I decided not to bruise his ego any further. I actually held back and let him win a few hands. LOL

The Best FREE Books I’ve Read Lately!

Penny Reid is one of the smartest and funniest writers I’ve ever read. She writes sexy, smart novels that infuse just the right amount of levity into any given situation. Who wants to take life and themselves so seriously? Not me! One of the things that drew me to my husband is his sense of humor and the fact that he could make me laugh. I love reading humorous banter in my stories. It’s my thing. So a book like Beauty and the Mustache really resonates with me. 🙂 I mean, Ashley is a former beauty queen, for goodness sake, and the girl left the country, a long time ago. But Drew is hell-bent on showing her that you can take the girl out of the country… Well, you get the gist. This heroine has six brothers with beards, too, and that in itself is hilarious. (Don’t be afraid to read this Book 4 in Penny’s Knitting In The City Series. It can totally be read as a standalone.)

I’ve read many of CD Reiss’s books. My introduction to her was through her Song of Submission Series. She writes unbelievably sexy men, who are often powerful and intelligent, yet flawed. The plots she crafts are so believable, it’s like you’ve actually encountered these people she’s created in real life. Her writing style is urbane, yet down to earth. I can immerse myself in her books and not surface for days. Yes, she is that good. So my advice to you is to not sleep on White Knight. Both White Knight and Beauty and the Mustache been hovering very high on the Top 100 Free Books List on Amazon, and these FREE gems could be your introduction to two new best authors for you.

“The first step toward success is taken when you refuse to be a captive of the environment in which you first find yourself.” – Mark Caine

LV’s Monday Meanderings…

Hello All! Here’s another episode of my Monday thing, since beginning my newest day job has kept me from engaging with you as much as I’d like to. This will provide a way for you to know what’s going on with me even though I’m not camping out on Social Media.

Writing, Writing, Writing!

Half of my novella is now done, and I’m looking forward to finishing this 20K piece. As I shared last week, I’ve been working on a novella for a contest. It involves a feisty, badass heroine who doesn’t take crap from her sexy-as-sin boss, despite their insane chemistry. They work in the culturally relevant cryptocurrency industry and bond on a work-related road trip. Although this is for a contest and I can’t share right away, if it doesn’t win, I will most definitely be sharing it with you via publication on Amazon for sure, and possibly some other venues. Stay tuned!

 

What I’m Reading!

Jewel E. Ann just knocked my socks off! Her Transcend Duet is spectacular, particularly if you love romance, reincarnation- themed books (somewhat paranormal), romantic thrillers, drop-dead gorgeous professors, sexy as f#%k tattooed bikers, and a heroine who is self-aware, strong, and vulnerable all at the same time! As a writer, it’s sometimes very hard to find something that really lives up to the hype because you’ve seen just about everything. This series grabbed me from page one and never let up. It completely takes you through the emotional spectrum, and I mean ALL THE FEELS! So, if you’re looking for something that guts you like “Me Before You,” without a main character you’ve invested in having to die, this is your book. I sobbed like an infant on parts of this (just letting you know). But there is an HEA despite the peculiar love-triangle that is Nate, Swayze and Griffin. I hope you will LOVE this as much as I did! And these books are well worth their $3.99 price point.

A Freebie to Balance my paid Recommendations!

 Mr. Control is FREE right now, so grab it while you can! After reading the Transcend Duet, I wanted more stories about sexy daddys. #JustSueMe  Sometimes, I get on a roll and just want the same feels over and over again. While Rhys Thayer is not Nate Hunt reincarnated, he is quite the sexy, take-charge type of hero I just love. And his darling little girl, Esme… OMG! You guys just have to snag and read it for yourself to see what I mean. Enter Melanie, the waitress with a heart of gold, and you’ve got a romance that sizzles. Come on, read this! You know you wanna. 🙂

 

When you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe, then you’ll be successful. –Eric Thomas