Friday, 22 April 2016

New Release & Review: Without Borders by Amanda Heger.

Without Borders
A Wanderlove Novel
By: Amanda Heger
Releasing April 19, 2016
Diversion Books

For Annie London, a month in a Central American rainforest means handing out mosquito nets, giving medical aid, and teaching children about the birds and the bees. With any luck, it will also land her application in the “accepted” pile at a top tier medical school. But as soon as she steps off the plane, Annie realizes her bug spray, feeble Spanish, and medical supplies won’t help her deal with her new feelings for Felipe—her best friend's older brother, who's much hotter than she remembers, and who also happens to be the doctor in charge of the trip.

Gawking “volun-tourists” may keep his family’s medical clinic afloat, but Dr. Felipe Gutierrez doesn’t have to like them. Or the way they make snap judgments about his practice and the people he cares for. But when his old crush, Annie, shows up to volunteer, her killer curves and kind smile fan the embers of a flame Felipe didn’t realize he’d been carrying. A flame that makes him question all his preconceived notions.

As ideas and cultures clash, Annie and Felipe must decide how far outside their comfort zones they are willing to go—both for their work and for one another.

Link to Follow Tour: HERE 

 The girl strained and cried out, and it took everything Annie had to keep her upright. Felipe and the midwife swapped positions with every contraction, taking turns at easing the infant into the world. But with every push, Felipe’s face darkened and the midwife’s voice grew shriller as she half cried, half encouraged her daughter.
Annie had no idea how long it had been since they’d arrived in this dim hut, but every second that passed with those arms and legs dangling outside the womb made her heart ache.
In a rare moment between contractions, Felipe and the midwife began arguing. They pointed and stomped and shook their hands as the words flew between them.
Angela sagged in Annie’s arms, pale and sweaty.
“What’s going on?” Annie asked.
For a moment, the arguing stopped and they both stared silently at Annie.
The girl’s mother pointed and nodded at her, shrieking in Spanish, but Annie didn’t understand a word of it.
Felipe held up a hand. “We are having some trouble delivering the baby’s head.”
The midwife yelled and pointed again, and before Annie could ask what she was saying, the woman stood and nudged her out of the way with her rotund mid-section. She looped her arms through Angela’s and took the girl’s weight.
Annie stumbled, her muscles too tired to change position. She squeaked to something that resembled standing, but her back refused to straighten. Felipe looked at her, eyes flashing with fear.
“We need you to deliver the baby,” he said.

Without Borders, a Wanderlust novel. The title alone made me sit up and take notice before diving into this refreshingly, captivating YA novel.

Armed with barely adequate Spanish language skills and a model of a vagina for the sex-ed classes she'll teach, Annie London heads off to Nicaragua to gain the necessary experience to pad out her application to Brown University Medical School. She'll accompany a medical brigade as they travel to remote villages in the jungle to treat and educate the locals. She's excited to reunite with her best friend Marisol and her older brother Filipe, who she crushed over as a teen, only now he's a sexy looking doctor and the one leading the expedition!

Dr. Felipe Gutierrez is frustrated. His mother who runs the Ahora medical clinic where he works allows donation voluntary/tourists from American to accompany him and his team on the medical brigades. They're mostly a burden and he's sick of their criticism and whiny attitudes. He doesn't expect anything less on this next trip, yet the girl he's fantasised about since meeting her during his year-long stay in the US will be on this trip. Only now she's all grown up with a killer curves!

The tension, sexual and otherwise is palpable between the protagonists as they deal and cope with restrictions of living rough as they travel through the jungle to set up makeshift clinics in remote villages. Some of their cases are not for the faint-hearted and I loved the gritty, no holds barred storytelling. I empathised through their cultural clashes and cringed at Annie's naivety of some of the situations, yet she's far from a dead weight on the brigade and is more than capable of holding her own. Felipe's compassion and dedication to the brigades are heartfelt. These arduous trips help him maintain a link between himself and his late biological mother's family. Annie may be on the trip for her own personal gains, yet she's able to offer viable ideas on how Felipe can strengthen his ties to the region, making him sit up and take notice, so he realises that not all 'Americana' are alike!

The supporting characters are fun and likeable too, adding hilarity and witty dialogue to the story. As a d├ębut novel, I'm impressed with Ms. Heger's writing style and more than eager to read future books by her.

***arc generously received courtesy of Diversion Publishing via NetGalley***

Amanda Heger is a writer, attorney, and bookworm. She lives in the Midwest with three unruly rescue dogs and a husband who encourages her delusions of grandeur.
Her debut romance, Without Borders, is forthcoming from Diversion Books. The story was inspired by the summer Amanda spent in rural Nicaragua, eating gallo pinto, speaking mangled Spanish, and showing high school students how to slide condoms onto over-sized plantains.
Her stories are represented by Jessica Watterson of the Dijkstra Literary Agency.

Rafflecopter Giveaway (5 ebook copies of WITHOUT BORDERS)

Spotlight: Mafia Secret by Angie Derek

Mafia Secret
By: Angie Derek
Re-Releasing on April 12, 2016
Thoroughweb Press

Lessa Noelle grew up never knowing she was the illegitimate daughter of a mafia king pin. After his murder, she finds herself a surprise heiress immersed in the dangerous world of organized crime with only the guidance of Marco Santos, her father’s second in command, to help her.
An uneasy attraction blossoms between the two as Marco searches for her father’s killer. He tries to keep the realities of his life from touching her and an already dangerous situation turns volatile when a killer turns his attention to Lessa.

Link to Follow Tour: HERE 
Her mother should be working the swing shift at the hospital, so she auto-dialed her mom’s cell number. It rang twice.
“Hi honey,” Erin Noelle said.
“Hey Mom.” Lessa glanced away from Santos, who was now listening closely to her side of the conversation. “Are you busy?”
“I can talk for a moment. What’s up?”
The background noise of the hospital faded out as her mother probably ducked into a room to hear her better.
“I need to ask you something.” She struggled for courage to ask the question which could change everything.
“What now?” Erin laughed.
Lessa took a deep breath. “Who is Jiovanni Tazio, and why is he sending me a letter saying he’s my father?”
Erin made a startled sound and the line went quiet.
“Mom?” Dread filled her. Her mom was supposed to say she didn’t know who the heck Jiovanni Tazio was.
“How did you find out?” Erin demanded.
“It’s true?” The line went silent again. Lessa spun to focus on the photo from the long-ago trip to Disney. Of the three of them smiling—her mother, Lessa, and the man she’d thought was her father. Who maybe wasn’t.
“Of course it’s not true. Peter’s your father. You look just like him.”
But she didn’t. She closed her eyes. She and Peter had similar coloring. Blonde hair, blue eyes, fair skin. But her features were like her mother’s.
“Just send the letter back to this man. He obviously got the wrong person.”
Her mom’s voice was too cool, and Lessa didn’t believe a word. “You mean hand it back to the courier?”
Erin gasped a second time. “Get away from him. Jiovanni’s men are dangerous.”
“Who says it’s a man? And who says it isn’t Jiovanni himself?” The depth of her mother’s lies started to work through her. She pressed her hand against her burning stomach.
“You have to get away from him right now.”
She shook her head even though her mother couldn’t see her. “You lied to me. All these years, and you pretended Peter was my father.”
“Sweetie, listen to me, they’re dangerous people. I had to lie to keep you safe. You need to stay as far away from Jiovanni as possible.”
She almost choked on her outrage. “That shouldn’t be a problem since, apparently, he’s dead.” And with him dead, she’d never have the chance to find out who her father really was.
“Jiovanni’s dead?”

Angie Derek writes paranormal and romantic suspense. She lives in the Sierra Nevada Mountains with her husband, two daughters, two horses, two cats, and a dog.

Rafflecopter Giveaway ($10.00 Amazon eGift Card)