Babe in the Woodshop by Ashlyn Kane, Claudia Mayrant, & CJ Burke: Release Day Review and Guest post (9/29) TBR Denise

babe-in-the-woodshop-coversynopsisWhen long hours and crushing stress push Bellamy Alexander to his breaking point, he walks away from his consulting job and drives until he runs out of gas. Fortune deposits him in front of Antonio’s, a place with decent pizza and an opening for a delivery boy. Even better, he finds an apartment right across the street from his new job. And best of all, Chris McGregor, the property manager who runs the custom furniture shop below Bell’s new digs, is super hot—and super into Bell.

It seems too good to be true—and maybe it is. Things aren’t exactly going smoothly. Bell avoids telling his mother the truth about his new job because he doesn’t want to hear how he should go back to the corporate world. On the other hand, he doesn’t think he wants to deliver pizza forever either. He’d like to think about settling down, but Chris runs hot and cold. Between Bell’s uncertainty and the hang-ups Chris refuses to talk about, they have their work cut out for them. Fortune may have caused their paths to dovetail, but it will take more than wood glue to hold them together.

Title: Babe in the Woodshop
Authors: Ashlyn Kane, Claudia Mayrant, & CJ Burke
Release Date: September 30, 2016
Category: Contemporary
Pages: 200

Guest Post

Hello, everyone! Ashlyn Kane, Claudia Mayrant, and CJ Burke here, thrilled to be making a guest appearance for Two Chicks Obsessed with Books and Eye Candy (we can relate, except in number, of course!). We’re here to talk a little bit about our upcoming release Babe in the Woodshop.

When long hours and crushing stress push Bellamy Alexander to his breaking point, he walks away from his consulting job and drives until he runs out of gas. Fortune deposits him in front of Antonio’s, a place with decent pizza and an opening for a delivery boy. Even better, he finds an apartment right across the street from his new job. And best of all, Chris McGregor, the property manager who runs the custom furniture shop below Bell’s new digs, is super hot—and super into Bell.

It seems too good to be true—and maybe it is. Things aren’t exactly going smoothly. Bell avoids telling his mother the truth about his new job because he doesn’t want to hear how he should go back to the corporate world. On the other hand, he doesn’t think he wants to deliver pizza forever either. He’d like to think about settling down, but Chris runs hot and cold. Between Bell’s uncertainty and the hang-ups Chris refuses to talk about, they have their work cut out for them. Fortune may have caused their paths to dovetail, but it will take more than wood glue to hold them together.

Now that you’re all caught up, we’ll turn the keyboard over to CJ, who’ll tell you a little bit about what the stars say about our heroes.

CJB: I’ve often found horoscopes to be an interesting way to develop characters, especially when trying to figure out where the rough and smooth elements fall in their relationships. So first I took a look at when and where Bell and Chris were born.

Bellamy Alexander: Born 8:20 a.m. on Thursday, May 9, 1991, San Diego, California.

Chris McGregor: Born 4:50 p.m. on Tuesday, September 4, 1984 in Berea, Kentucky. When the book opens, Chris has just turned 32, and he’s feeling his years.

Bell Alexander is a Taurus with moon in Pisces and Gemini rising. Mostly that means Bell’s a nice guy but is going to stand up for himself, and he used to be ambitious but he’d rather have good friends and a real life. He’s not exactly running away, but he hasn’t yet figured out where he’s headed. Luckily, his sun sign keeps him grounded, while his moon in Pisces gives him a vivid imagination—both in his work and in his personal life.

When Bell meets Chris McGregor, he’s intrigued by this handsome craftsman who seems quiet and focused on his work, but who surprises Bell in a variety of ways. Chris is a Virgo with both moon and ascendant in Capricorn, giving him a strong sense of practicality and responsibility. He’s generally solitary and needs someone to bring out the fun side. He’s cautious about relationships, but once he’s in, he’s in and it’s peaceful and fulfilling.

Their composite chart has some interesting elements. They share the sun in the fourth house, Venus in the fifth house, and the moon in the eleventh house, all of which indicate a relationship that includes both friendship and love. However, they also share a sun in opposition to Neptune, an indicator that they’re both keeping secrets from each other, and possibly even from themselves.

Babe in the Woodshop releases September 30 from Dreamspinner Press. You can preorder it here, here, and here.

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denise review

This slow burn, sweet and sexy love story is just what I needed while dealing with life. I will say there was a big surprise (interestingly enough, found in the closet) waiting for Bell and the reader, which brings loads of humor in to the mix…and one reader heading online to see if they are really out there. 🙂

I loved that Bell left the big city stresses behind, to try to find some peace and balance for himself. He recognized that he was on a treadmill that he wouldn’t be able to get off until he cut the cord completely.

Chris had a side to him that you didn’t expect in the first time or two of seeing him. 😉 I loved that sexy, innuendo laden side. It was fun to read, and enjoy the interactions in regards to that slightly sinful side.

These two men were a perfect mix together. If Bell had seen Chris in his other space, he likely wouldn’t have moved further with him, with everything he had going on. However, meeting him in a small town, where everyone either knows everyone else or is going to college, allowed them to connect with one another.

When you have a slow burn love story, it is sometimes hard to find the right balance between too slow and boring your reader, and burning up the pages just enough to keep the reader interested. This book rode the edge in the first half, but definitely picked up the pace, and kept me engaged through the end. Recommended. And read it again, although you can only be surprised by what was in the closet one time. 😉

4 pieces of eye candy

 

4-pieces-of-eye-candy2

meet the author
Ashlyn Kane is a Canadian former expat and current hockey fan. She is a writer, editor, handyperson, dog mom, and friend—sometimes all at once.

On any given day she can usually be found walking her ninety-pound baby chocolate lapdog, Indy, or holed up in her office avoiding housework. She has a deep and abiding love of romance novel tropes, a habit of dropping too many f-bombs, and—fortunately—a very forgiving family.

Find her on Twitter @ashlynkane or Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ashlyn.kane.94.

 

Claudia Mayrant has been exploring the world around her since she was old enough to get around under her own power. Her early travels took her on her bicycle “all the way to but not on the main road.” Happily, since then, she’s enjoyed visiting as many places as she can, from bustling marketplaces and enchanting castles to funky dives. She can’t possibly decide which she likes best, but details of her favorite people, places, and things usually get put in the fiction blender so they can make an appearance in her stories.

Claudia maintains that each new adventure requires the appropriate footwear, which explains her closet. Her passion for taking photographs of the things she sees, does, and eats far exceeds her skill with the camera, but no matter the setting, she has fun trying to get a good shot.

For all her love of travel, she’s most relaxed back in the South on a Gulf Coast beach with good friends, refreshing beverages, and plenty of sunscreen.

Her smartphone isn’t literally connected to her hand, but anyone would be forgiven for thinking so.

Twitter: @claudiamayrant

Pinterest: ClaudiaMayrant

 

CJ Burke’s first book was the self-published A Fancy Witch, illustrated in crayon with particular attention to the witch’s footwear. While CJ is now long past first grade, she’s still hunting that perfect pair of equestrian boots.

CJ’s life has always been centered on words. She’s written a couple of those familiar yellow books about computers, and more user guides for obscure software than necessary, but she’s never given up the habit of plotting romances in her head during boring lectures or staff meetings. Along the way, she’s been a lifeguard, an English professor, and a dozen other things in between. In a perfect world, CJ would work between an independent coffee shop and an amazing yarn & fabric store, then go home to alphabetize her spices while dancing around the kitchen to whatever’s on the 80s channel.

CJ can be found on Ravelry, Instagram, and Twitter as cjburkebooks.

This post may contain affiliate links. Advanced Reader Copies are accepted by Two Chicks Obsessed in exchange for an honest review without additional compensation.

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