Thursday, March 7, 2013

Review & Exclusive Excerpt: Armando Returns by Reeni Austin

I Love the Cover of Armando Returns! 
It's the Perfect image to reflect their intense Love & Need for one another. 
Plus I Love the use of purple on a book cover. :)

Book description:
Their secret wedding should have been the happiest event of their lives. Armando Barboza and Katie McCormack were both eighteen years old and fresh out of high school when Katie's father brutally ripped them apart.
Ten years later, a simple phone call turns Armando's life upside down and sends him running home to find her.
Who will Katie choose? The man whose ring she wears, or the high school sweetheart whose loss shattered her world?

My Review (5 Stars):
Recap of book 1- Armando Returns is book 2 in the Barboza Brothers series by Reeni Austin. In book 1, Fresh Temptation we met Cara, Victor, and Cara's young son Isaac. I immediately liked Cara because she is a hard working, sweet yet tough, down to earth, single mother who loves her child boundlessly. I was swooned by Victor Barboza a wealthy, powerful, and in charge alpha male with a kind soul, who knows and understands the meaning of true love. As for precious little Isaac, you can't help but love that little guy. With his sweet little pronunciations of words, like: Bictow or Victor...he's just so cute, you want to hug him! If you're anything like me, at the end of Fresh Temptation you wanted to know more about Cara & Victor's story and where their love leads them.
I was pleasantly pleased to discover that Reeni Austin incorporates the continuation of Cara and Victor's story in Armando Returns. I was even more pleased with how their love story blossomed
Book 2 Intro- We are introduced to Armando Barboza and Katie McCormack as two love struck eighteen year old's who are desperate to be together, regardless of what their families say. While en route to their secretly planned wedding, Katie's father intervenes ripping them a part and forbidding them to ever see each other again. 
Although, it's extremely painful and it feels as though they have no other options, both try their best to move forwards with their lives.
Is it possible to ever forget your soul-mate
Is it possible to allow yourself to love again, when you know that person is out there somewhere? 
Katie and Armando have ten years to learn to live without each other before fate intervenes in their lives once again. This time bringing them front and center in each other's lives. But, the circumstances are much different for both of them this time around. 
How I perceived Armando:
Armando, Armando, Armando...Oh, how I love Armando's character. He is a tall, lean, muscular, hardworking, kind, loving, and wealthy man of Hispanic descent. The term Tall, Dark, and Handsome fits him quite well. His intense need to love and protect Katie is heart-touchingly beautiful. He's very much a respectable stand up guy...which I completely love.
How I perceived Katie: 
Katie is from a prominent family in their small Texas town. Her well to do background doesn't negatively affect her moral character as many might assume; she's not a snob. She is educated, kind, hardworking, loving, down to earth, beautiful, intelligent, but slightly naive. I really like Katie's character and think she is perfect for Armando.
In Closing- Fresh Temptation and Armando Returns are for the most part light-hearted romance stories with a little added spice. That being said, there is depth in the story line and in the characters. 
Armando Returns is a story of true undying love, the loss of that love, and the chance to reclaim that love, which was never truly lost and certainly not forgotten.

There are some intense scenes in this book that made my chest to tighten with anxiousness and/or anger, sadness and happiness. It's truly a beautiful, well written romance and I highly recommend it to all. 
If you haven't already done so be sure to read book 1 Fresh Temptation too. 

Armando Returns will be available for purchase very soon.
“I’ll be back in a minute, baby.” Armando cupped Katie’s chin and gave her a playful smile. “Don’t you go anywhere.” He winked, then kissed her. He added a quick, “I love you,” before opening the door to exit the car.
“Hurry!” Katie giggled with pure glee as she watched her sexy fiance rush to the little convenience store—the first store they had seen in miles in this dry, dusty Texas landscape.
It was exactly one week after graduation. The day they looked forward to for months was finally here. With only Armando’s car, a few suitcases, and their entire combined savings of three thousand dollars, they were halfway to New Mexico where they had an appointment with a judge to get married at a courthouse. A courthouse far from Katie’s father’s jurisdiction as a judge.
Katie had never been so happy. They were three hours away from home, with three and a half more hours to go until they reached their destination. She would soon be Mrs. Armando Barboza and there was nothing anyone could do to stop her. She planned to call her parents in a few days. By her estimation, her phone call would arrive around the same time they realized she hadn’t taken that trip to Galveston with the girls from the church youth group. And by then, she and Armando would be on their honeymoon at a cozy little bed and breakfast.
Smiling, she gazed inside the store. She tucked a lock of her thick red hair behind her ear and turned her entire body to watch him chat with the cashier inside the store. Every minute away from him was an eternity. She imagined those strong arms wrapped around her. Succumbing to his kiss. Quenching their need for each other with nobody around to stop them.
Tonight they could finally make love without feeling guilty. They would be husband and wife. No more sneaking around. No more lying.
They would be free.
She watched Armando, entranced. Too swept up in her daydream to give more than a passing thought to the vehicle she heard pulling up beside the car. She saw Armando’s jaw drop, then he stormed outside just as she heard an angry voice barely muffled by the closed window and the hum of the air-conditioner.
“Get out of that car right now or I’ll break that damn window and drag you out!”
Katie’s stomach tied up in one painful knot. Her perfect fantasy shred into a million pieces at the sound of her father’s rage.
This wasn’t part of the plan. They were supposed to be a safe seven hours away and married for a few days before she broke the news to Daddy. Mustering her anger, she sat up, crossed her arms over her chest and stared straight ahead, desperate to avoid his stare. She was just about to scream at him when she was interrupted by Armando’s voice.
“Whatta you think you’re doin’?” Armando dropped the small bag of items he had just purchased and broke into a sprint. “Get away from—”
Katie turned abruptly to the sound of her father’s fist now pounding against the door, just below the window.
Armando met the unexpected visitor just as his arm was high in the air, ready for another blow against the metal. “That’s enough!” Armando pressed his palms against Mr. McCormack’s shoulders with a violent shove, sending the tall, lanky man back a few paces, landing him on his knee as he braced his fall. “We’re both eighteen! You can’t keep us apart anymore!”
Dwayne McCormack scrambled to his feet. “Really, now?” He rushed forward to pin Armando against the rear window. “You think it’s smart to hit a judge, boy? You know what I could do to you?”
Katie’s eyes filled with tears as she opened her door and stepped outside. “Daddy! Stop!”

Purchase Links-

Fresh Temptation:
Amazon ecopy-
Amazon Paperback-

Armando Returns:
Amazon- Will post once released :)
B&N- Will post once released :)

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