Review – Hard Crush by Mira Lyn Kelly

REVIEW:

Oh my goodness!  This was the first book I have ever read by Mira Lyn Kelly, but I can guarantee you it will not be the last.  Hard Crush blew me away!  From start to finish, this book was emotional, poignant, and so erotic I am surprised by Kindle didn’t spontaneously combust (because I know my panties sure did)!  It’s been ten years since our heroine, Abby, walked away from the love of her life so that all of his dreams could come true.  I freaking ADORED Abby!  I can’t explain in enough words how highly I thought of her having given up her shot at happily-ever-after with her soul mate so the world could share in his brilliance.  Abby is kind, sweet, and determined to live her life on her owns terms and most of all, she craves the family she never had as a child.  She is so inspiring and amazing in her own right and she has the perfect blend of sense of humor mixed with compassion and understanding.  As for Hank, he is just as perfect as Abby but with a special brand of sexiness only he can pull off.  He knows how he has always felt about Abby and once he sees her again after a 10 year absence, he knows that she was the one thing in his life that made him feel complete.  Hank is so hot, every single time he opened his mouth, I about fainted.  I adore a nerdy but alpha man and Hank fits this description to a “T”.  I love how he pursued Abby, not like a wrecking ball demolishing a building, but with a subtle grace that eventually swept her off her feet.  The path to happily-ever-after was not easy.  Nope, it was honestly gut-wrenching but every second I read, was a cherished second.  The chemistry was like nothing I have ever imagined but the sheer emotion between Abby and Hank was what really put this book over the top.   Let’s not forget the sex scenes.  They were decadent and erotic.  Make sure you keep water and a fan nearby, because that’s about the only thing that will cool you down.  Overall, from start to finish, this book was sublime with no flaws, very little angst, wonderful secondary characters and a love that was so beautiful, everything else pales in comparison.  My advice is to run, walk, skip, fly….whatever your mode of transportation, use it and buy this book. I for one will be getting my copy in print because it’s one of the best I have ever read and has earned it’s spot in my library right along with my other favorites.  I can hardly wait to see what Ms. Kelly has in store for us next but I know I will definitely be looking for previous books written by her.  5 stars (but I’m giving it an extra 5 because it’s my blog and I can)!

Title: Hard Crush
Author: Mira Lyn Kelly
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: March 6, 2018

 

Blurb
HARD CRUSH is a sizzling standalone romance from  USA TODAY Bestselling author Mira Lyn Kelly.
A jaded billionaire.
The girl who got away.
A second chance has never been so sexy.
ABBY
Technology has it out for me. And I’m not  talking about my ever-ailing phone or the temperamental Smart Board in my classroom. I’m talking about the internationally hailed “Tech Genius” formerly  known as the boy I used to love.
It was bad enough seeing that cocky smile staring back at me from my newsfeeds, the gossip sites, and—fine—the scorchingly hot men’s fitness magazine I bought in a moment of weakness. But now he’s back home, teasing me with the memories I’ve tried to leave behind, crowding into my space and taunting me with the kiss I can’t resist. I know it’s only a matter of time before I lose him again. He’s already told me he isn’t staying, warned me he’s changed. I know better than to let him get too
close, so why can’t I push him away?
HANK
They call me a visionary. An innovator. Hell, last week a headline touted me as the billion-dollar geek keeping Silicon Valley’s panties wet. Try living that down. Strip away the media BS, and I’m just a tech-minded guy with my eyes on the future and no time for a past I can’t change. So what am I doing following the sweet sound of its laugh back to the woman who passed on our chance at forever?
I tell myself all I want is to say hello. To see her smile. Just a few minutes to pretend we’re still the “us” I thought would never end. But once I’ve had a taste of the too tempting woman she’s become, a few minutes isn’t enough.
The man I am today is used to getting what he wants, and I want her.
The problem? She wants the guy I used to be.
Ten years later, all that’s changed is… everything.
 

Purchase Links

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

B&N / KOBO / iBOOKS

Excerpt

I take her hand and remember the thousands of times I’ve done it before. “I’m glad we got to talk. It’s been too long.”
A few strands of her hair catch in the breeze and I tuck them behind her ear. Only
just like with hearing my name and holding her hand, the tactile sensation from the soft strands between my fingers stirs up memories I thought safely put to bed. It gives me ideas I shouldn’t be considering.
“Hank?”
Abby whispers, quiet and confused. “What are you doing?”
Losing my mind. “Giving us a better goodbye.”
My fingers curl in so the backs of my knuckles stroke her soft cheek. This is so messed up. I know what I’m doing is wrong, but she’s looking up into my eyes.
I kiss her.
By adult standards, it isn’t much of a kiss. A single brush of my mouth against hers and a lingering contact I’m not quite ready to give up. And yet that barely-there
kiss has my heart slamming against my ribs and fire racing through my veins.
It’s like I’m fifteen again. Except instead of this being my first kiss with Abby, it’s
our last, and I don’t want it to end.
I’m not talking about not wanting it to end like I didn’t want all the other Abby stuff  to end before.
No, this is different.
I. Don’t. Want. This. To. End.
But too soon, that soft clinging contact is gone, leaving only the warmth of her breath
against my lips.
One breath.
Two.
Three.
I open my eyes, realizing I’m not the only one still holding on. Abby’s free hand, the
one that isn’t still trapped in mine, is wrapped around my tie.
She hasn’t let go.
A shadow passes over her eyes. “You’re not in Chicago for good.”
She isn’t really asking, but she wants to hear me say it anyway. She wants to remind us both that fundamentally nothing has changed. That we need to stop this before
it goes too far, and hell, I know she’s right.
“I’m not. Tomorrow’s just a business trip, but all indications are I’ll be out of Chicago
in a few months if this deal goes through.” And even if it doesn’t, there will be something else. There’s always something else.
It’s the deal breaker that lost me this woman ten years ago. After the way Abby grew up, she couldn’t watch me leave and she wouldn’t wait for me to come back. I didn’t
understand until it was too late the first time around, but now I do.
And with her in my arms, it’s good that neither of us loses sight of the fact that this
fundamental difference between us hasn’t changed.
She nods her understanding, and I wait for her to take a step back, for the shake of her head and quiet laugh. Only it doesn’t come. Instead, her eyes drop back to my
mouth and the world around us starts to slow. Because I know that look. I fucking love that look.
But this has to be a mistake. We aren’t teenagers. We aren’t starting something new.
So what am I doing, uncurling my fist to sift my fingers into the dark silk behind her
ear? Using that hold to tip her head back? Waiting until her heavy-lidded stare finds mine again?
What am I doing?
Only it doesn’t matter what I’m doing, because then Abby is the one tugging at my tie to bring me closer. She’s the one murmuring her agreement that this is a much better goodbye a scant inch from my mouth.
She’s the one short-circuiting my brain, and now the only thing I’m thinking is that I
can do much, much better.
This time when my lips meet hers, there’s nothing barely-there about it. I kiss her hard,  gathering her close, then closer still as she opens beneath me with a  shuddering gasp I feel all the way through me.
Her fingers knot in my hair, then race over my shoulders and neck. Christ, her touch is electric, building the charge in my chest by the second.
We’re breathless and frantic. Devouring each other with a hot need that edges the
line of control.
Just another minute and we’ll stop.
Just another taste.
My hand wraps in her hair and she moans around the thrust of my tongue.
Yes.
The part of my brain that’s still functioning is rolling through the data… 
We’re in a parking lot.
The press is camped out on the other side of the school.
I don’t do serious, and this is the girl I learned how to love with.
We should stop. No maybe about it.
But Abby’s breasts are pressing into my chest as she wraps her arms around my neck, and now there’s another part of my brain speaking up… and this is the part I know better than to listen to. It’s the part that dirty-talked me into climbing up
the old oak outside Abby’s bedroom window… when her parents were home. It’s the
part that swore up and down security wouldn’t notice if I let myself back into the lab at MIT after hours just to finish my experiment. And right now, it’s casually noting the parking lot is empty.
It’s asking me why, if the press knew we were back here, they aren’t calling my name to score a frontal face shot.
“Hank,” she gasps, and there’s no more mental chatter. I press her against the car, pinning her with the weight of my body.
Author Bio
Hard core romantic, stress baker, and housekeeper non-extraordinaire, Mira Lyn Kelly is  the USA TODAY bestselling author of more than a dozen sizzly love stories with over a million readers worldwide. Growing up in the Chicago area, she earned her degree in Fine Arts from Loyola University and met the love of her life while studying abroad in Rome, Italy… only to discover he’d been living right around the corner from her back home.
Having spent her twenties working and playing in the Windy City, she’s now settled with her husband in rural Minnesota, where their four amazing children and two ridiculous dogs provide an excess of action and entertainment. When she isn’t reading, writing, or running the kids around, she loves watching the Chicago Blackhawks and action/adventure movies, blabbing with the girls, and cooking with her family and friends.
Author Links

 

Cover Reveal – Hard Crush by Mira Lyn Kelly

 

Title: Hard Crush
Author: Mira Lyn Kelly
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: March 6, 2018

 

Blurb
HARD CRUSH is a sizzling standalone romance from USA TODAY Bestselling author Mira Lyn Kelly.
A jaded billionaire.
The girl who got away.
A second chance has never been so sexy.
ABBY
Technology has it out for me. And I’m not talking about my ever-ailing phone or the temperamental Smart Board in my classroom. I’m talking about the internationally hailed “Tech Genius” formerly known as the boy I used to love.
It was bad enough seeing that cocky smile staring back at me from my newsfeeds, the gossip sites, and—fine—the scorchingly hot men’s fitness magazine I bought in a moment of weakness. But now he’s back home, teasing me with the memories I’ve tried to leave behind, crowding into my space and taunting me with the kiss I can’t resist. I know it’s only a matter of time before I lose him again. He’s already told me he isn’t staying, warned me he’s changed. I know better than to let him get too
close, so why can’t I push him away?
HANK
They call me a visionary. An innovator. Hell, last week a headline touted me as the billion-dollar geek keeping Silicon Valley’s panties wet. Try living that down. Strip away the media BS, and I’m just a tech-minded guy with my eyes on the future and no time for a past I can’t change. So what am I doing following the sweet sound of its laugh back to the woman who passed on our chance at forever?
I tell myself all I want is to say hello. To see her smile. Just a few minutes to pretend we’re still the “us” I thought would never end. But once I’ve had a taste of the too tempting woman she’s become, a few minutes isn’t enough.
The man I am today is used to getting what he wants, and I want her. The problem? She wants the guy I used to be.
Ten years later, all that’s changed is… everything.
 

Pre-order Links

AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

B&N / KOBO / iBOOKS

Excerpt

I take her hand and remember the thousands of times I’ve done it before. “I’m glad we got to talk. It’s been too long.”
A few strands of her hair catch in the breeze and I tuck them behind her ear. Only
just like with hearing my name and holding her hand, the tactile sensation from
the soft strands between my fingers stirs up memories I thought safely put to
bed. It gives me ideas I shouldn’t be considering.
“Hank?”
Abby whispers, quiet and confused. “What are you doing?”
Losing my mind. “Giving us a better goodbye.”
My fingers curl in so the backs of my knuckles stroke her soft cheek. This is so messed up. I know what I’m doing is wrong, but she’s looking up into my eyes.
I kiss her.
By adult standards, it isn’t much of a kiss. A single brush of my mouth against hers and a lingering contact I’m not quite ready to give up. And yet that barely-there
kiss has my heart slamming against my ribs and fire racing through my veins.
It’s like I’m fifteen again. Except instead of this being my first kiss with Abby, it’s
our last, and I don’t want it to end.
I’m not talking about not wanting it to end like I didn’t want all the other Abby stuff
to end before.
No, this is different.
I. Don’t. Want. This. To. End.
But too soon, that soft clinging contact is gone, leaving only the warmth of her breath
against my lips.
One breath.
Two.
Three.
I open my eyes, realizing I’m not the only one still holding on. Abby’s free hand, the
one that isn’t still trapped in mine, is wrapped around my tie.
She hasn’t let go.
A shadow passes over her eyes. “You’re not in Chicago for good.”
She isn’t really asking, but she wants to hear me say it anyway. She wants to remind us both that fundamentally nothing has changed. That we need to stop this before
it goes too far, and hell, I know she’s right.
“I’m not. Tomorrow’s just a business trip, but all indications are I’ll be out of Chicago
in a few months if this deal goes through.” And even if it doesn’t, there will be something else. There’s always something else.
It’s the deal breaker that lost me this woman ten years ago. After the way Abby grew up, she couldn’t watch me leave and she wouldn’t wait for me to come back. I didn’t
understand until it was too late the first time around, but now I do.
And with her in my arms, it’s good that neither of us loses sight of the fact that this
fundamental difference between us hasn’t changed.
She nods her understanding, and I wait for her to take a step back, for the shake of her head and quiet laugh. Only it doesn’t come. Instead, her eyes drop back to my
mouth and the world around us starts to slow. Because I know that look. I fucking love that look.
But this has to be a mistake. We aren’t teenagers. We aren’t starting something new.
So what am I doing, uncurling my fist to sift my fingers into the dark silk behind her
ear? Using that hold to tip her head back? Waiting until her heavy-lidded stare
finds mine again?
What am I doing?
Only it doesn’t matter what I’m doing, because then Abby is the one tugging at my tie to bring me closer. She’s the one murmuring her agreement that this is a much better goodbye a scant inch from my mouth.
She’s the one short-circuiting my brain, and now the only thing I’m thinking is that I
can do much, much better.
This time when my lips meet hers, there’s nothing barely-there about it. I kiss her hard, gathering her close, then closer still as she opens beneath me with a
shuddering gasp I feel all the way through me.
Her fingers knot in my hair, then race over my shoulders and neck. Christ, her touch is electric, building the charge in my chest by the second.
We’re breathless and frantic. Devouring each other with a hot need that edges the
line of control.
Just another minute and we’ll stop.
Just another taste.
My hand wraps in her hair and she moans around the thrust of my tongue.
Yes.
The part of my brain that’s still functioning is rolling through the data… 
We’re in a parking lot.
The press is camped out on the other side of the school.
I don’t do serious, and this is the girl I learned how to love with.
We should stop. No maybe about it.
But Abby’s breasts are pressing into my chest as she wraps her arms around my neck, and now there’s another part of my brain speaking up… and this is the part I know better than to listen to. It’s the part that dirty-talked me into climbing up
the old oak outside Abby’s bedroom window… when her parents were home. It’s the
part that swore up and down security wouldn’t notice if I let myself back into
the lab at MIT after hours just to finish my experiment. And right now, it’s casually noting the parking lot is empty. 
It’s asking me why, if the press knew we were back here, they aren’t calling my name to score a frontal face shot.
“Hank,” she gasps, and there’s no more mental chatter. I press her against the car, pinning her with the weight of my body.
Author Bio
Hard core romantic, stress baker, and housekeeper non-extraordinaire, Mira Lyn Kelly is the USA TODAY bestselling author of more than a dozen sizzly love stories with over a million readers worldwide. Growing up in the Chicago area, she earned her degree in Fine Arts from Loyola University and met the love of her life while studying abroad in Rome, Italy… only to discover he’d been living right around the corner from her back home. Having spent her twenties working and playing in the Windy City, she’s now settled with her husband in rural Minnesota, where their four amazing children and two ridiculous dogs provide an excess of action and entertainment. When she isn’t reading, writing, or running the kids around, she loves watching the Chicago Blackhawks and action/adventure movies, blabbing with the girls, and cooking with her family and friends.
Author Links

 

Excerpt Tour – May the Best Man Win by Mira Lyn Kelly

Four friends

Each a Best Man at a wedding

One chance to get it right

9781492630739-300.jpg

Tour Titles 3

Jase Foster can’t believe his bad luck. He’s been paired with the she-devil herself for his best friend’s wedding: Emily Klein of the miles-long legs and killer smile. She may be sin in a bridesmaid dress, but there’s no way he’s falling for her again.

They can barely stand each other, but given how many of their friends are getting married, they’ll just have to play nice—at least when they’re in company. Once they’re alone, more than just gloves come off as Jase and Emily discover their chemistry is combustible, and there may be something to this enemies to lovers thing after all…

 

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2ae4h16

B&N: http://bit.ly/2ae4xx2

iBooks: http://apple.co/2ae4DVx

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2ae4qS7

Tour Titles 1

“J-Jase! Wh-what are you d-d-doing?”

He looked down at her feet, which had taken on a mottled, angry appearance, and growled, “What the hell were you doing?”

Opening her mouth to speak, she snapped it closed again when those big hands started rubbing over her abused flesh.

“Barefoot. No jacket. Running across the—” His eyes went to the roof of the car, and Emily had the distinct impression that Jase was within a hellfire’s throw of blaspheming the sacred parking lot. “What? Didn’t want to ruin your shoes? Couldn’t be bothered with the hassle of a jacket? Is your vanity skyrocketing so high that the oxygen’s too thin to feed your brain?”

Her chattering teeth ground together as heat born of too many years listening to Jase Foster sell her short started to burn inside her. Her arm snapped out, one finger pointing in accusation. “I appreciate the r-rescue, but I-I’ve about had it w-with the rest of your b-bull. I d-don’t need you l-looking to tear me d-down every opportunity you can f-find. Not that you d- deserve it, but here’s the d-deal.”

Through chattering teeth, she detailed the chain of events leading up to her rescue, starting with the missing ring, the limo driver taking off before she could get her things out of the back, her car, and the fact that no one seemed to even notice she’d gone into a ditch. With each clarification she warmed a little more, her teeth chattering a less. “With all the ice under the s-snow, I thought I’d probably kill myself t-trying to cross the l-lot in those heels and figured my only option was to r-run. It wasn’t about vanity, you arrogant, accusing j-jackass. It was about necessity. So screw off!”

She finished on a rush of breath and then snapped her hand back under the blanket, quickly looking across the lot at the church. This guy didn’t deserve an explanation. She wasn’t supposed to care enough about what he thought to feel the need to give him one. But after everything else that had gone wrong today…

Whatever.

The heater blowing was the only sound. Then, “Are you okay?”

“I’m frustrated, Jase. Not about to b-break down and s-sob all over you or anything. Can you just drive up to the entrance and drop me? I c-can get in on my own from there.”

“Physically okay is what I’m asking. Your car is in a ditch. Did you bump your head or strain your neck?”

“Oh. Um, no. I was taking the turn into the lot pretty carefully, so when the wheels lost traction and started to slide, it was kind of a slow-motion event.” At his skeptical look, she let out a laugh. “I can’t believe you care, but really, it’s the truth. My heart was going faster than the car, I think.”

He gave a stiff nod. “That’s good then.”

Okay, so they were back to being civil. “Do you think you can drop me at the front?” she asked again.

Jase looked out the windshield. “I’ll carry you in, but yeah, I’ll get by the door first and then run back out.”

The icy blocks that were her feet suddenly burned within the grasp of two wide hands. “Can you wiggle your toes?”

Her feet were in his lap, her legs stretched across the console between them. Her heels rested between his thighs, and he was rubbing the life back into her abused soles.

She wiggled her toes, and while they were a little stiff… “I don’t see an amputation in my future.”

Jase laughed, then seemed to catch himself and look out his driver-side window. But she could see through the reflection that he was still looking at her.

His hands moved over her feet, rubbing and squeezing the blood through them. Circling with his thumbs at the center of her arch. Stroking the muscle that ran along the bottom. It felt good. Really good. Like maybe even a little too good because that slow, steady, warming touch was starting to relax her in a way she wasn’t accustomed to when it came to Jase.

He palmed her heel and rotated her ankle, his fingers extending just the slightest bit up her calf. Enough that for one second Emily thought about how it would feel to have those big hands coasting up past her knee.

She gave her head a solid shake and tried to pull her foot back. But Jase just told her to relax—because he wasn’t taking her anywhere until he’d gotten her warmed up—and then moved back to her other foot. His long fingers spread over her chilled flesh. Pressing exactly the right spot. Rubbing so it took everything she had not to moan.

The silence was starting to feel strained, but maybe that was just because for a second there she’d thought about Jase in a way she’d been working very hard not to. And that wasn’t cool. They had mutual loathing down to an art form. They were good with it.

Anything else would just be…weird.

He rotated her ankle and then knuckled up the sole of her foot—and this time, the moan of pleasure slipped past her lips before she was able to yank it back.

“Wow, Em. You need a minute alone?”

Heat rushed into her cheeks, but she wasn’t going to let Jase have the last word or the upper hand. Even if he had just pulled off what could only be described as a rescue of Prince Charming proportions.

“Yes, please. And if you’ve got a s-snapshot of Max to leave with me, that’d be swell.”

“You know, Em. The key to a successful burn is keeping a straight face. Or short of that, stifling the snort laugh.”

She gaped, her eyes locking with his, and damn it, more laughter bubbled up her chest. “I did not snort.”

His brows raised in smug satisfaction. “Okay.”

She leaned forward, amusement and indignation mingling in her next words. “I didn’t.”

She thought he was ready to deliver the next slam. She might even have been anticipating it, just a little. But instead of him waiting the mandatory beat and letting her have it, his brows drew forward, his gaze darkening.

She followed his stare to where his hands were cradling her leg. The long, thick fingers on one of his hands were splayed wide to cradle her calf, the other hand resting over her knee where her dress had piled up.

She hadn’t noticed it before. Hadn’t even been aware of where his hands had ended up when she shifted forward in her seat. But now, now she could feel his fingers like a brand. Feel that tingle of awareness, that low charge working its way outward. Riding the line of her leg, the bend of her knee, the length of her thigh. She could feel the heat of his palms, the press of each finger where it lay against her skin. God, she could feel her blood heating beneath them.

Her breath trembled.

Jase looked back to her. His eyes smoldered now with something she’d never seen in them before. They were close, only inches apart. A blanket of snow had already covered the windshield and driver-side windows, making this space they were sharing feel private, intimate.

She stopped breathing.

Tour Titles 7

USA Today bestselling author Mira Lyn Kelly grew up in the Chicago area and earned her degree in fine arts from Loyola University. She met the love of her life while studying abroad in Rome, Italy, only to discover he’d been living right around the corner from her. They live in rural Minnesota.

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