Thursday, June 15, 2017

Blog Tour: Sugar and Gold by Emma Scott

Title: Sugar & Gold
Author: Emma Scott
Release Date: Tuesday, June 13, 2017
Tagline: “I loved you before. I will love you forever.”

Nikolai Alexei Young was born with a special gift…one he’d do anything to lose. The heart and soul of every person he comes into contact with is an open book to his heightened senses. Colorful emotions, whispers of thoughts, the sour tastes of old memories…He feels them all. The sci-fi books would call him an empath. For Nikolai, his ability has made him an exile. He roams the U.S. alone, avoiding the glut of life in big cities, and using his innate talents to win money in underground poker games. Just enough to keep going, one town to the next. He has no hope that his life can be anything else, until he meets her…

At nineteen, Fiona Starling was trapped in an ugly, desperate situation until she freed herself the only way she knew how. Now three years later, living outside Savannah, Georgia, she is rebuilding her life on her own terms; seizing every moment and saving every penny so that she might fulfill her dream of moving to the raw wilderness of Costa Rica. But behind her carefree smile beats the heart of a lonely young woman haunted by her past, until a chance encounter with a tattooed stranger changes everything… 

Fiona takes Nikolai under her roof for three sultry nights, waiting out the rain of a summer storm. She grows more and more fascinated by this brooding stranger with whom she shares an intense physical connection—a connection so strong, she wonders if there is something between them beyond lust and passion. Nikolai is shocked to discover that Fiona calms the raging turmoil in his heart. She alone silences the din of other people’s lives, and envelops him in the sweet beauty of her inner self. Every moment he’s with her—every touch of her skin—brings him closer to the peace that’s been eluding him his entire life.
But Fiona harbors secrets that she is too terrified to reveal. After Nikolai confesses his unique ability, she is caught between wanting to believe him and fearing he’ll eventually unearth her own dark past. When the unthinkable happens, Fiona’s plans come crashing down, and Nikolai discovers his hated ability might be the only thing that can save the woman he loves. 

Sugar & Gold is a new adult romance with shades of the paranormal and is the second book in the Dreamcatcher novels, a series of interconnected STANDALONES.  

5 Stars
Review by Jen Skewes

Oh how I loved this book, but that shouldn’t be any surprise because this is Emma Scott.  When I find out that she is releasing a new book the people the next town over from me can probably hear my screams of excitement.  Sugar And Gold was everything that you could hope for in an Emma Scott novel.  It was emotional, filled with passion and as always her words just captured me from beginning to end. 

Nik has been born with a gift, one that has been torturing him for all of his life.  It made his childhood one that if he could erase and do over he would.  He lives day to day trying to escape the noise inside his head, the feelings that he feels when around other people, the smells that tell him who a person is.  He just wants it all to go away but does not know how to get rid of it.  Then he meets Fiona and something changes.  For once in his life he feels whole.  But his one night with Fiona was supposed to be just that, one night and nothing more. 

Fiona has managed to escape her past and hopes within a few months to move on and live the life she has been dreaming of, in a place where she can be happy, and secluded and where no one can find her.    It has been a while since she has felt what it is like to be with a man.  With some encouragement from her friend she sets out to the bar to find the man that she will bring home with her for just one night.  But when she met Nikolai she never expected to feel more for him.  One night became two and then three.  When it was time for him to leave neither one of them wanted to say goodbye but they both knew it was for the best.  She would be leaving soon and Nik had to get back on the road.  They are both scared of what they are feeling for each other but at the same time they know that there life will not be the same without them in it.  Will they say their final goodbye or put their fears to the side and see what this thing is between them?

I cannot begin to explain how much I loved this book.  Ms. Scott has this amazing ability of making you feel with these characters in such a way that it’s almost as if you are right there with them.  Or maybe she makes me feel like I am them.  I know that sounds really weird, but it’s moments like the first time Nik kisses Fiona, or whispers words to her, or takes her face in his hands to go kiss her, that makes you feel like you are there, lie you are one with the character.  You get those chills and goose bumps running up your arms and spine and just feel the passion between the two characters.  From the moment they met you just knew, you felt what they had.  They did not feel like two people having a one night stand,  it felt like two people who felt so passionate about each other and that is what  I loved because in those moments you feel the connection with these characters.

Sugar And Gold was a story filled with so much emotion and passion.  There was laughter, and love and some heartbreak as well.  It was a unique story and so different from anything that I have read before.  I loved these two characters.  Fiona, is a strong woman who has been through so much hurt and pain.  But she is a survivor who has the strength and determination to put it behind her and move on with her life.  Nik had been through so much as a child, that my heart just hurt for him.  He is covered in tattoos, sexy but sweet and has heart.  Nik and Fiona together is one of those couples that just stay with you as will this story.  Loved it!!!

Sugar & Gold Excerpt:
 She breathed a genuine laugh and held my gaze. Everything about her was pink; her drink, her hair, the bright halo of glimmering dust that surrounded her.
Kindness, compassion, charity. Those were the feelings I associated with pink.
I hadn’t seen it this strong in anyone in a long time.
Fiona clinked her glass to my bottle. “Thanks for taking care of my over-eager dance partner, Nik. And for the drink.”
She sipped her Cosmo. “Not much of a talker, are you?” Her eyes were impossibly bright, her smile showing a broad mouth and full lips.
“Club’s not a great place for talk,” I said.
“True,” she said, “but here we are.”
Here we are…
A short silence fell.
“Nik,” Fiona mused. “Nik, Nik,” she said again, in a light, sing-song manner. “Short for Nicholas?”
“Nikolai,” I said.
“Oh, I like that.” Her colors warmed and sweetened, like an invitation, drawing me closer. “Are you Russian? You don’t have an accent.”
“My mother is.”
“Do you speak it?”
“Yeah,” I said. “I picked some up.”
She scooted closer on her seat. “Say something in Russian.”
“Like what?”
“I’m not picky. I can’t speak a word so anything is going to sound good.”
I thought for a second and then spoke aloud the only thought I had in my head.
“Ti samaya krasivaya devushka na svete.”
Fiona’s smile widened and the bright wisps of her happiness wrapped around me. I wanted to take in more of it. Which made no sense at all. With other women, their scents were so often cloying and unwanted like the air wasn’t mine to breathe.
What the fuck is wrong with you? Get a grip.
I sucked down a long swig of beer. Fiona watched me, her eyebrows raised, then she laughed. “Um, Nik? You realize you’re supposed to tell me what you said, right?”
I shrugged and my lips twitched. “Don’t remember.”
Fiona laughed again. “Liar.”
We both took a sip from our drinks and let a little silence fall between us. A nice silence.
“That was lovely, your Russian,” Fiona said eventually. “Whatever you said, it sounded…sexy.”
My gaze swung to her eyes. “Yeah?”
She tucked a lock of hair behind her ear. “Yeah. I was going to say something harmless like ‘unique’ or ‘exotic’, but I’d rather be honest with you, Nikolai. I don’t like playing games.” Her brow furrowed slightly. “I don’t like it at all.”
I sensed a shadow starting to creep over her. Something old and full of pain. Driving it away suddenly became my only goddamn purpose in life.
“I guess you’re not going to like me much then,” I said. “I play games constantly. Every day.”
A smile crept over her lips. “Is that so?”
“Sure,” I said. “Omaha, Texas Hold’em, stud, draw, lowball, high-low split…”
She laughed, flaring pink again, and the shadow around her retreated. “A joke and a smile too. I was beginning to wonder if you ever smiled.”
I shrugged. “It happens.”
“And those games, they’re all poker, right? You play poker every day?”
“Not every day. Most days.”
“For a living?”
“No, I’m a…” I coughed. “I’m a salesman. Motorcycle parts. I travel a lot for the job, and finding poker games in each city is sort of my hobby.”
My standard lie, though I hated laying it on her. I knew plenty of grinders who lived off their poker winnings, but that was for the love of the game. I played because thanks to the ken it was easy to win, and I’d never cared that it was cheating. It was the only way to put my strange ability to use that I knew of, and it allowed me to give a big fuck you to the universe for cursing me with it in the first place.
But lying to Fiona felt dirty. Even when haunted by bad memories she was luminous, while I was tatted and stained, as if the ink on my hands would bleed out and onto the white of her dress if I touched her.
She cocked her head at me, wearing a perplexed little smile. “You don’t look like a salesman.” Her eyes drifted over my tattooed arms and neck, to the talons piercing my ears. “When I think of ‘traveling salesman’ I picture a middle-aged guy in a suit with a suitcase full of encyclopedias.”
“No suitcase,” I said. “Catalogues and order forms.”
“And you travel a lot?”
“Almost non-stop.”
“That sounds lonely.”
“You do something long enough, you get used to it.”
“I know what you mean,” Fiona said, a tinge of darkness around her words—that shadow started to creep back until she buried it. “But the poker makes it fun?”
“Breaks up the monotony of the road.”
“Do you make a lot of money?” she said, then laughed, beautiful in her self-consciousness. “Sorry, I’m not asking for your bank balance, I just meant, are you any good at it?”
“I’m really fucking good at it,” I said.
Her eyebrows shot up and she nudged my arm with a laugh. “If you don’t say so yourself.”
“Maybe I feel like being honest with you too.” I could feel where she touched me, a tingling heat that was slow to fade.
“I like that.” She swirled her cherry around in her drink by its stem. “So are you in town, selling motorcycle parts, for very long?”
“Couple of days.”
“I hope the storm doesn’t put a damper on your business.”
“It won’t.”
“You’re lucky. At my job, we’ve been given the next few days off.”
“You sound bummed about that.”
“Every penny counts.” She met my eye. “I’m moving out of the country very soon and want to save up.”
I took a sip of my beer. I’d known Fiona for five minutes, but the idea of her moving any further away than her seat at the bar filled me with inexplicable dread.
What the fuck is wrong with you?
But it wasn’t what was wrong with me, anymore. It was what was right. The girl exuded a calm that danced along my skin, and when I inhaled, it was like breathing in the scent of something delicious but far away. The thrumming life all around me grew quiet. For the first time, I felt close to peace, and I wanted more.
If I touched her…
“Nikolai?” Her blush matched the color of her drink. She rested her chin in her hand. “Not to sound cheesy but you’re undressing me with your eyes.”
I felt heat creep along my neck and a bumbling apology rose to my mouth. Instead, I held her gaze, leaned closer to her. “You want to know what I said to you in Russian?”
Her eyes were bright and I could feel her draw closer to me. “Yes. Tell me.”
“I said that you’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen.”
The deep pink of her darkened to red. Not the ugly red of hate or anger, but the heated red of intense want. Hers matched mine. I wanted that strange sense of peace she exuded, but I wanted to touch her too. To take her hard and lose myself in her completely.
Fiona held my gaze. “I don’t think that’s true, but the way you look at me…I can almost believe it. Like how you watched me on the dance floor. I liked you watching me, Nikolai. It was as if I could feel your eyes on me before I found you.”
You found me…

Author Bio:
Emma Scott writes romances with flawed characters, characters with artistic hearts: builders, poets, and writers of various makes and models. And love always wins. Always. 
Where to Find Emma:
Twitter: @EmmaS_writes
Instagram: @EmmaScottWrites

Sugar & Gold Blurb:
“I loved you before. I will love you forever.”

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