Branded by Stacy Gail Review Tour

Title: Branded
Series: Brody Brothers
Author: Stacy Gail
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: July 2, 2018 Publisher: Carina Press
You want my hands on you, Celia. Making you shiver, making you moan, making you scream. Admit it.
Celia Villarreal had wanted those things with Ryland Brody, Bitterthorn’s golden boy—and wanted them badly enough to make a fool of herself one idiotic night months ago.
Naughty children shouldn’t touch what they don’t own.
Rejection always stings, but putting a move on Ry had devastating consequences. Now, her regret burns as bright as her need—until Ry, as glorious as ever, makes her an offer that might finally be her ticket out of town.
I’m not your enemy, darlin’. If you give me half a chance, you’ll see that I can be your hero.
When working together leads to grinding all naked-like with the very cowboy who’d seen her at her worst, Celia is afraid she’s made a mistake.
Until the truth comes out.
This is who we are, from now on. Say it. Feel it.
Once Ry’s past motivations come to light, Celia must decide if she can give him another chance, or turn her back on Bitterthorn—and the one man who’s always wanted her—for good.

“You wanted twenty-four hours to make your decision, so that’s exactly what you’re going to get. You will be taking this project on, whether you know it or not, so there’s no point in you saying otherwise.”
“No, I won’t.” She didn’t even realize she was going to stomp her foot in her fury until she did it, and something crunched underneath it.
Crunched…and wriggled.
Her muffled scream coincided with her launching straight up and into Ry’s surprised arms, her own arms wrapping around his neck in a stranglehold.
“What the…?”
“Bug!” It was the best she could do.
“A scorpion? Did you get stung?” In an instant he had her inside, carrying her at a near-run to set her on the huge kitchen island topped with a slab of dark gray granite. “Celia, are you stung?”
“It crunched.” God, God, why didn’t he understand the horror?
“Which foot? The right?” Untangling himself from her strangler’s grip, he picked up her foot by the ankle, bent to examine it… and began to smile. “Looks like a small, garden variety beetle.”
“It’s still there?”  Her screech had now reached super-sonic levels. “Get it off, get it off, get it off!”
When he burst out laughing, she vowed that one day she would kill him. Slowly.
“Okay, I’m getting it off, though this is your own damn fault.” Still chuckling, he turned and ripped a wad of paper towels off the roll suspended under the weathered-finish cabinets. “This is South Texas, woman. You know better than to run all over creation without shoes.”
“Don’t talk. Bug. Get it off.”
“Yeah, I heard you. Along with the rest of the county.” Grinning, he wet the paper towels and with quick efficiency swept the bottom of her foot clean. “There we go, all better. Wanna see it?”
“Ugh, no! God, just…no, no, no, no, no. Ugh.”
“I’m going to take a wild shot in the dark and guess you don’t like bugs.”
Valiantly she fought off a shudder of revulsion and tried to remember how to communicate without screaming. “The first time I saw a tomato hornworm I almost blacked out. Nearly ended my love of gardening then and there.”
“You still look like you might faint.” Tossing the towels into the nearby trash, he leaned his hands against the counter on either side of her and dipped his head until his face was level with hers. “Want me to carry you to bed, darlin’?”
Her eyes met his, and for a full second her heart stopped beating. The question hung between them, full of such wild possibilities it made her breathless, and a startling flash fire of hungry awareness scorched her skin until she thought she might be glowing with it. Then the memory of being spanked for being a naughty child reared its ugly head, and that heat morphed into prickling humiliation.
Deliberately she shifted her gaze to the spiky tribal tattoo on his right forearm—mainly because no one with a double-X chromosome could breathe when looking into those devastating green eyes—and tried to edge away from him. “No, I’m fine. Except I’m not fine,” she couldn’t help but add, at last giving in to the shudder. “I think I need some antiseptic. And a foot bath. And maybe surgery, because I can still feel it wriggling and crunching. Ugh.”
Another burst of laughter erupted from him, and to her shock he rested his forehead on her shoulder. “God, you’re killing me with the cute.”
He was so close, so warm, so freaking touchable… “Laugh all you want, but I’m not joking. I think I’m traumatized.”

“What you need is a distraction. I got just the thing.” Still chuckling under his breath, he lifted his head and caught her mouth with his.

REVIEWER: RAYCHEL
RATING: 3.5 STARS
It took a few chapters for me to really get into the story. Not that it’s slow, we get a lot of back story right off the bat and it was dragging. Also, it took some time to actually start liking Ryland. He isn’t your typical alpha male which makes him come off as a jerk. Celia, for the most part handles him well. The story does pick up so don’t quit and I enjoyed it a few chapters in.
AMAZON LINK: https://www.amazon.com/gp/review/R1CD4CEZDT0FTR

A competitive figure skater from the age of eight, Stacy Gail wrote stories between events to pass the time. By fourteen, she told her parents she was either going to be a skating coach who was also a romance writer, or a romance writer who was also a skating pro. Now with a day job of playing on the ice with her students, and writing everything from PNR and cyberpunk to contemporary romance at night, both dreams have come true.
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