Tag Archives: Lynda Aicher

BLOG TOUR: Champagne Kisses by Lynda Aicher

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Today we’re thrilled to welcome Lynda Aicher to 3 Chicks After Dark as part of the blog tour for Champagne Kisses. You can check out Kristy’s fantastic review of this holiday romance here. Welcome, Lynda!

HOLIDAY WEDDINGS

In Champagne Kisses, Evan Cleary is an event planner charged with pulling together a rather large Christmas Eve wedding in a few short weeks. A crazy endeavor at any time of the year, but even more so during the mad crush of the holiday season.

This got me thinking about holiday weddings in general. I’ve attended one such wedding in the frozen north of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The wedding was held on the weekend between Christmas and New Year’s, so not exactly on the holiday but during the season. I asked why they’d chosen the timing, thinking it was something romantic like they loved the season or it was when they’d met or got engaged. Nope. It was simply convenient. They lived in Arizona and having their wedding at that time minimized their trips home plus it was when most of their extended family was in the area. I must admit my romantic heart took a little dive at that point.

A wedding is often an overwhelming event no matter how small you try to keep it. I personally couldn’t imagine planning a wedding during an already chaotic and busy time of year. Also, people are so overbooked during the holiday season, I think I’d feel guilty asking anyone to fit a wedding into their schedule. But that’s just me.

I can also see the romance of a holiday wedding. Of riding on the seasonal cheer with red velvet bridesmaid’s dresses and twinkling lights. Of something different than the standard summer wedding décor. White snowfalls (if you live in the north) and Christmas carols and spiked eggnog. And with my luck, a blizzard would trap everyone at home—or at the reception. Now that would make for a fun snowed-in Christmas story…

What are your thoughts on a holiday wedding? Yay or nay?

ABOUT CHAMPAGNE KISSES

Champagne KissesThe Christmas Eve wedding Evan Cleary pulled together in four weeks is crashing down around him and taking his fledgling event planning business with it. With an empty altar and over a hundred guests arriving soon, he turns to the resistant, gorgeous brother of the runaway groom for help.

When Richard Patterson’s flamboyant brother storms out hours before he’s scheduled to marry his equally dramatic partner, Richard is left dealing with the fallout. The last thing he wants is more drama, yet he can’t deny his attraction to the effeminate event planner trying to salvage the wedding.

Evan thinks his crush on Richard is a lost cause, but one steaming kiss later, he learns different. What starts as a night of hot sex turns into a connection neither expected. But Evan knows their relationship is hopeless unless the ultra-conservative Richard can embrace every part of him—both in private and in public.

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ABOUT LYNDA AICHER

I love to read. It’s a simple fact about me that has been true since I discovered the worlds of Judy Blume at the age of ten. This love of reading transferred to young romance (the early version of Young Adult when the stories weren’t plagued by vampires, werewolves, and death) which hooked me on the romance genre and the fulfillment that comes with a happy-ever-after ending.

Twenty-five years later, I’m still an avid reader of all types of romance. The diversity of writing in the market ensures that there is always something new to read. I’m still a sucker for the happy-ever-after because there are more than enough not-so-happy endings in the real world that I don’t need to read about them. I read a book for enjoyment and I want to feel good when the story ends.

I have the luxury of being a full-time writer, that is, a full-time writer around my duties as mom, wife, cleaner, cook, chauffeur, master scheduler, banker, cheerleader, volunteer, and tutor. Writing has to be a priority, or it would never happen.

I live in the Pacific Northwest which provides many months of rain-filled incentive to stay indoors and write. However, I’m a Midwesterner at heart. A perfect day has the snow falling outside, a fire warming the room, a football game on the television, a roast cooking in the oven, my family hanging out around me and a good book to read.

I’m thrilled to be nominated for a 2015 Romance Writers of America RITA® award (that’s the Oscars of the romance world) for my Male/Male book Bonds of Denial. This is the first time any M/M books have been nominated and I’m humbled to be a part of such a great event.

CONNECT WITH LYNDA:

WEBSITE / FACEBOOK / TWITTER

 

GIVEAWAY

To celebrate the release of Champagne Kisses, Lynda Aicher is giving away a $50 gift card to Amazon! Your first comment at each stop on this tour enters you in the drawing. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on December 19, 2015. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. Entries.  Follow the tour for more opportunities to enter the giveaway, and don’t forget to leave your email or method of contact so Riptide can reach you if you win!

REVIEW: Champagne Kisses by Lynda Aicher

Champagne KissesChampagne Kisses by Lynda Aicher

Published by Riptide Publishing

Released on December 14, 2015

Page count: 83 pages

Cover Art by L.C. Chase

Sales links: Riptide Publishing

Blurb:

The Christmas Eve wedding Evan Cleary pulled together in four weeks is crashing down around him and taking his fledgling event planning business with it. With an empty altar and over a hundred guests arriving soon, he turns to the resistant, gorgeous brother of the runaway groom for help.

When Richard Patterson’s flamboyant brother storms out hours before he’s scheduled to marry his equally dramatic partner, Richard is left dealing with the fallout. The last thing he wants is more drama, yet he can’t deny his attraction to the effeminate event planner trying to salvage the wedding.

Evan thinks his crush on Richard is a lost cause, but one steaming kiss later, he learns different. What starts as a night of hot sex turns into a connection neither expected. But Evan knows their relationship is hopeless unless the ultra-conservative Richard can embrace every part of him—both in private and in public.

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Our Thoughts:

I’ll just start this review off with full disclosure. I’m a huge fan of Lynda Aicher’s books. She’s a sensational writer and I was thrilled to see her published with Riptide.

I discovered Aicher’s Wicked Play series, which was m/f romance but she dared to throw in a m/m romance book into the mix. It was one of my top ten books read that year. As if that wasn’t enough, the cover was drool worthy. Aicher had me wrapped around her finger with her strong protagonists, hockey, BDSM and always an emotional battle. Every book is unique and not status quo. She’s not writing to a formula and I appreciate the creative turns her stories take.

All of that said, Champagne Kisses was a real Christmas treat. Richard and Evan are an established couple from her Wicked Play series, Champagne Kisses tells the story of how they met and got together. What we get out of the deal is one of the hottest nights between two reluctant men. Yes, reluctant.

Richard is reluctant to give into the temptations that Evan presents. Evan is proud, strong, smart, hard-working and defiantly gay. Defiant because he is who he is and he won’t change one thing to make someone else happy or comfortable. He’s a bit feminine, and unapologetic about it. Richard is the exact opposite with his stiff posture, professional mannerism and tight upper lip. He is handsome, dapper and passionate. He wants Evan but he’s just as scared as Evan is that they are too attracted and couldn’t walk away after a one-off.

Their one chance to connect is a night of epic proportion. I have never, ever read a more encompassing passionate scene. Richard is controlling but gentle. He’s firm enough to turn Evan on and make him feel conflicting sensations that go straight to all the right places. It’s kinky. It’s sensual. It’s gentle lovemaking and intense fucking. It’s the perfect mix of everything and it’s consuming and so erotic it is off the charts wonderful!! I’ve read nothing like it!

Richard and Evan will capture your heart. I hope after reading Champagne Kisses you’ll find that you need the rest of Lynda Aicher’s books because they’re  truly must reads! Also, you’ll never be able to drink champagne without snickering over how Richard uses it during their night of passion. :D

RATING: BAD ASS BOOTS!!

Penalty Play (Power Play #3) by Lynda Aicher

Penalty Play

Penalty Play by Lynda Aicher

Series: Power Play book 3

Released 10 August 2015

Published by Carina Press

Blurb:

Minnesota Glaciers’ starting defenseman Henrik Grenick is good at two things: hockey and sex. He’s got it all—the career, the biceps, the babes. But the steady parade of women through his bedroom just leaves him wanting more, hunting for the next distraction. Until he meets Jacqui, who awakens a hunger he never knew he craved.

Fiercely independent Jacqui Polson has no time for the seductive hockey player demanding her attention. More band geek than bimbo, she’s in an entirely different league, and growing up with four hockey-crazed brothers left her with no interest in that world. But damn, Henrik’s hot. And when it comes to sex, Jacqui knows exactly what she wants.

As their relationship moves beyond games, Henrik needs more—not just of Jacqui’s touch, but of her. Jacqui discovers there’s more to Henrik than just the gruff facade. But after a lifetime of fighting their own battles, neither has ever let anyone get so close. As they soon find out, needing someone isn’t a weakness, it’s the only thing that matters…

Sales links: Amazon • Carina Press • All Romance eBooks

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Our thoughts:

Penalty Play is the third installment in the Power Play series. A spin-off of Aicher’s prior series, Wicked Play. Personally, I love this world! The last series focused on the BDSM club (which was awesome) but a love of hockey really makes this new series fun and rich with options.

Henrik Grenick is a defender for the Glaciers. A great player on ice, not in real life. His string of girlfriends all leave him after a short time. They take and get to play the rich and famous game for a while. He buys them nice things and then they leave. Is he heartbroken over it? Not really. It’s not like any of these women have ever really known him. He’s never given them his heart either.

Grenick is hiding behind hockey to ease the pain in his life from a loss and also loneliness. The love he doesn’t get from his family, he tries to make up for with his hockey family. But does this made family really know him?

A trip to a music store to find a distraction from the quiet of his home brings Henrik and Jacqui together. She’s passionate about music and Henrik wishes he could have the musical outlet he once held so dear to his heart. One thing he does know, he finds this carefree woman refreshing. Unfortunately, he’s always been awkward with the dating games. They usually come to him, he doesn’t usually have to pursue.

Jacqui is strong, carefree and passionate. She sees a genuinely nice guy in Henrik. He’s polite and refined, but reserved. He’s willing to give his heart to Jacqui, something he’s never done before. She’s too wrapped up in her past illness to really see that all Henrik needs is to be loved in return. He’s never had that and doesn’t even know he deserves it until it’s within his grasp and taken away.

Penalty Play is not as emotional as I expected with the loss and illness. It’s not about broken people finding each other. It’s more about finding the strength within to find what you need and deserve. To seek it, grab it, and hold onto it for dear life.

The passion between Jacqui and Henrik is intoxicating. They sizzle and quake but they’re also gentle and loving when it’s needed. No inhibitions on either side. Henrik is a big studly teddy bear. Mix in a big Irish Catholic family, music and the roughness of hockey and we have another winning goal of a story from Lynda Aicher.

RATING: BAD ASS HOCKEY SKATES (BAD ASS BOOTS)!!

Back in Play (Power Play #2) by Lynda Aicher

Back in PlayReleased 11 May 2015

Published by Carina Press

Categories: Romance, Hockey, Contemporary, Addiction

Synopsis:

For Minnesota Glaciers captain Scott Walters, skating on a bum knee—and self-medicating to keep skating on it—is all part of the game. That the painkillers he’s eating prevent him from having meaningful relationships is just one more sacrifice in a lifetime of them. He’s worked too hard to let his image be ruined by injury or dependency, so he hides the pain and fakes the rest—a girlfriend would only complicate matters.

High school teacher Rachel Fielding never needed a man in her life, but she also never intended to grow old alone. When she meets Scott while visiting her brother, she’s intrigued to find herself wanting him in her bed. For hours at a time, as often as possible. Scott is a giver, and just the memory of his attentions is enough to drive her crazy. Anything long-term is out of the question, though—the pills she finds in Scott’s house indicate he’s struggling with a lot more than growing older in a young man’s game.

When what starts out as a what-the-hell weeklong fling turns into Scott and Rachel exploring each other outside the bedroom, Rachel hesitates. But Scott asks for her support to break his addiction, and hearing him admit his secrets has her ignoring her own rules—until he breaks her heart. With the Glaciers refusing to renew his contract and his future with Rachel uncertain, Scott has some big decisions to make and a lot to prove—especially to himself.

Sales links: Amazon •  All Romance eBooks • Carina Press

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Our Thoughts:

I’ve read a lot of Lynda Aicher books and they’re all fabulous stories. There have been two that have stood out head and shoulders above the rest and they happen to be linked. The first was Bonds of Denial, Rock and Carter’s story. The other is Back in Play. In Back in Play it is Scott and Rachel’s story. Rachel is Rock’s sister! Imagine my squeals of joy during all the Rock and Carter cameos!

Rachel and Scott meet at Vanessa and Holden’s wedding. The whole opening scenes were wonderful because we have Glacier players and the club friends merging on the same scene. It was the best of two series merged together for optimum reader delight. :)

Scott and Rachel share a quiet moment together on a balcony then dance the rest of the night away. Rachel, a teacher from Atlanta has no clue who Scott is. She’s not a sports fan so she doesn’t know his notoriety on or off the ice. She just sees a man needing a distraction as badly as herself.

What results is the start of a fiery romance between the two. Fun, distracting dates that make Scott feel like he’s liked and desired for more than his talents on the ice, it’s almost too good to be true. Rachel has never had a man take so much interest in her. A man attentive and giving yet fun to be around, also too good to be true.

That perfect world comes shattering to the ground when Rachel discovers Scott’s biggest secret. It shows pure strength of character for Scott to fess up and disclose that he is in so much knee pain from an injury two years ago and is now addicted to pain meds. He’s being let go by his team and the management hopes he will retire because they don’t want to see him crippled or dead from addiction. Rachel is so stoic when Scott lets all his demons surface. The shame Scott felt was quickly pushed aside when Rachel didn’t judge or flee. She just held him and asked what she could do to help.

That’s exactly what Scott needs, help. Facing a rough road ahead, he’s determined to kick his addiction and play hockey again. He wants the Glacier’s to take him back for one more season, one more chance at the Cup. Just one more year. Can Scott really manage the pain drug free? Will the knee make it that long. Will Rachel and Scott be able to juggle a long distance relationship when addiction and other factors weigh so heavily on the relationship anyway?

Back in Play really does a great job of bringing the struggles and mess of addiction to the forefront as well as the hardships and stress that playing a professional-level sport can put on a person. Scott has only known hockey. He’s scared of what comes after. He’s always known that one day his career would end but once faced with that reality, it’s hard for him to accept. Rachel is set in her ways and has past issues that prevent her from committing to a long distance relationship.

Rachel and Scott are so perfect together. They’re mature, fun and smolder in the bedroom. You’ll find yourself rooting for them from their first meeting until the last pages. Back in Play is all about the individuals and their journey toward love and acceptance through the grasp of addiction. Acceptance within a sport, within their families, friends and also with each other.

RATING: STILETTOS!!