Fitness Junkie by Lucy Sykes and Jo Piazza

Fitness Junkie




When Janey Sweet, CEO of a couture wedding dress company, is photographed in the front row of a fashion show eating a bruffin–the delicious lovechild of a brioche and a muffin–her best friend and business partner, Beau, gives her an ultimatum: Lose thirty pounds or lose your job. Sure, Janey has gained some weight since her divorce, and no, her beautifully cut trousers don’t fit like they used to, so Janey throws herself headlong into the world of the fitness revolution, signing up for a shockingly expensive workout pass, baring it all for Free the Nipple yoga, sweating through boot camp classes run by Sri Lankan militants and spinning to the screams of a Lycra-clad instructor with rage issues. At a juice shop she meets Jacob, a cute young guy who takes her dumpster-diving outside Whole Foods on their first date. At a shaman’s tea ceremony she meets Hugh, a silver fox who holds her hand through an ayahuasca hallucination And at a secret exercise studio Janey meets Sara Strong, the wildly popular workout guru whose special dance routine has starlets and wealthy women flocking to her for results that seem too good to be true. As Janey eschews delicious carbs, pays thousands of dollars to charlatans, and is harassed by her very own fitness bracelet, she can’t help but wonder: Did she really need to lose weight in the first place?

A hilarious send-up of the health and wellness industry, Fitness Junkie is a glorious romp through the absurd landscape of our weight-obsessed culture.




“But to be divorced, over forty, without kids – that made Janey something different altogether.”

Any woman of a certain age that has been through something and then went on a journey to “find” herself will be able to relate to this book. There are parts that are lighthearted and completely over the top in a funny way and others that hit on the serious measures some women will go to for their happiness. All of those things make this an almost perfect chick lit book. My only issue is that the ending seemed rushed and I wanted more details about the progression of the characters. Overall, I predict this book will be a HUGE hit and a perfect companion for the beach this summer!!!







Buy Fitness Junkie Here!

Get to know Monica Richardson!

I am excited to feature Monica Richardson to the blog today. She is a romance author with Harlequin and recently released her novel Second Chance Seduction. Read below to learn more about the book and for an interview with Monica!

Second Chance Seductionimg_0015-9.jpg

Loving and marrying Savannah Carrington came naturally to Edward Talbot. Thanks to his political ambitions, losing his stunning wife was all too easy, as well. Co-parenting their young daughter has been the silver lining in their divorce. Then Savannah surprisingly accepts Edward’s invitation to visit his family’s Bahamian bed-and-breakfast, and the sultry tropical breezes begin to rekindle their deep, passionate connection.

He’s always been the man of her dreams—sexy, confident and charismatic. Savannah and little Chloe just needed more than Edward could give. With a successful new career in fashion design, she’s ready to move overseas. Yet from the Caribbean to London, Edward is in hot pursuit, reminding her how good they can be together. The stakes are higher than ever. And it may take the threat of losing everything to see just how wonderful love’s rewards can truly be…


Amazon: Buy Second Chance Seduction here!

Harlequin: Buy Second Chance Seduction here!



Monica Richardson

Monica Richardson writes romance based in the Caribbean Islands.  Her alter-ego, Monica McKayhan currently has 11 titles in print.  The first book in her young adult series, Indigo Summer, was the launch title for Harlequin’s imprint, Kimani TRU which made its debut in January of 2007. That same year in May, Indigo Summer snagged the #7 position on the Essence bestsellers list, another first for Kimani Press. It also appeared on the bestsellers list in the May 2007 issue of Black Issues Book Review (BIBR). Indigo Summer appeared on the American Library Association (ALA)’s list of 2008, 2009 & 2010 Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers.  Monica’s young adult title, Ambitious appeared on the ALA’s list of 2013 Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults. In 2009, Monica received a film option for the INDIGO SUMMER series. She also penned her first romance novel, Tropical Fantasy in 2013.  She currently has 14 published novels, 4 of which are romance.

img_0010-1.jpg1. When did you decide to become a writer?  I’ve been writing since about the age of 12, but began to seriously pursue a writing career when I was about 21 years old.  I submitted to several publishing houses, got turned down many, many times and spent years polishing my craft.

2. Why do you write?  I write because it’s my passion.  It’s like the air I breathe.  It’s who I am.  I also write because I can give messages, hope and encouragement through my writing.
3. Which writers inspire you and why?  My very first inspiration was Maya Angelou.  Reading some of her earlier works…that was my first encounter with an African American writer.  I was so encouraged, and so excited to learn that black people write!  Then when Terry McMillan and Eric Jerome Dickey came on the scene, that was a whole new world for me.  They were so talented, and I could relate to their stories.  Margaret Johnson-Hodge was my mentor, and I love her work.  I’m a fan of Walter Mosley, as well as Victoria Christopher Murray and Kim Roby.
4. What is your favorite book and why? I have two favorite books – I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS by Maya Angelou. it was my first encounter with African American literature, well written and terribly engaging.  I also love DISAPPEARING ACTS by Terry McMillan.  I thought it was brilliant how she bounced between the female and male protagonists.  It taught me how to write from different perspectives, and inspired my first male character, Rico, from my book FROM HERE TO FOREVER.
5. Of all of the characters you have created, which is your favorite and why? I think my favorite character (if I must choose) is Maxie from my debut novel, AS REAL AS IT GETS.  She was so flawed and raw, and down to earth. She was real, and my readers connected with her.  And I loved writing her story.
6. Do you read your reviews? Do you respond to them, good or bad? Do you have any advice on how to deal with the bad? I read all of my reviews, and I read them with an open mind.  My readers are my best critics, and they keep me grounded.  The best way to deal with bad reviews, is to take from it what you can and incorporate the helpful things into the next book.  Don’t sweat the small stuff.
7. How do you think you’ve evolved creatively?  I think that my creativity has been somewhat stunted since writing romance.  There are so many rules and stipulations that go along with writing for a traditional house, which is why i’m excited to get back to writing mainstream fiction and doing it independently.  
8. If you could have been the original author of any book, what would it have been and why?  I think I would love to have written THE COLOR PURPLE.  I thought it was brilliant, and one of the best stories ever written.
9. What advice would you give to aspiring writers?  Keep writing, finish the story.  Don’t be discouraged by the industry politics.  Develop your time management skills because that will be the so important.  Learn as much about the industry as you can.  Network and make connections.  Writing is about 10% actually writing the story.  The rest is about networking and marketing the book, so develop those skills.
10. Why do you think so many well-written books don’t sell?  So many well written books don’t get read because of my previous statement.  Writing is about 10% of actually writing the story.  The rest in about networking and marketing the book.  Many writers are simply creative creatures, they never intended to be marketers.  Most are introverts.  However, the reality is people won’t know about your book if you’re not out there talking about it.
11. Where do you see publishing going in the future? How do you think we can promote and increase diversity within the literary industry?  I think the traditional houses will continue to suffer, as hybrid authors are finding that self-publishing is way more lucrative and provides more freedom.  I think that downloadable e-books and shorter stories will become more favorable.  People are busy and have a need for speed, so convenience will prevail.  As for diversity…the state of diversity and equality in this industry has been grim for a long time – decades.  I think that people of color need to be in influential positions of publishing, if change is going to occur.  We have to continue to create our own awards, ceremonies and celebration – but we have to do it without the cliques.  Talented writers should be celebrated for their talent and hard work.
12. What are your ambitions for your writing career?  I’m embarking on a new endeavor as a hybrid author.  I’m pretty excited about that.  I’m planning to re-release my first two books (which were published by BET Books) as e-books.  AS REAL AS IT GETS & FROM HERE TO FOREVER.  And then write the third book in that series, which will be a Christmas book, SOMEDAY AT CHRISTMAS.  It’s targeted release is December 2017.  I truly enjoyed writing YA and connecting with the young readers, and will return to that one day as well.

13. How can readers discover more about you and your work?

Instagram: island_romance
Twitter: @island_romance, @monicamckayhan
Amazon Author Page:

14. Are there any final words for the readers of Reading in Black & White?  Thanks so much for allowing me to share with your readers!  It’s an honor and a privilege whenever I’m able to connect with readers.  I hope readers will pick up my Talbots of Harbour Island series, and stay tuned for the other indie projects I have in the works.  Look for that in the fall!




REVIEW: Seduced By The Mogul by Pamela Yaye





Winning is a way of life for Dante Morretti, and he’s got the real estate empire to prove it. With custody of his four-year-old son, Matteo, at stake, Dante intends to win that, too. Marrying his best friend, Jordana Sharpe, is a vital step in his plan. But when the alluring actress takes Matteo and Dante sightseeing around Los Angeles, he’s waking up to a world beyond boardrooms and billion-dollar deals.

Jordana is as committed to her acting as Dante is to his business. She doesn’t envision feeling that passion for anything else, until her no-strings arrangement with the gorgeous Italian magnate takes a detour…right into Dante’s bed. Suddenly everything is at stake—her career, his custody fight and a fake marriage that could very well lead to the real family they both secretly crave…




Dante is tall, dark, handsome, an alpha male, and the main character of this book. He’s fresh from a divorce and has absolutely no plans to go down the marriage road again until the welfare of his son becomes an issue. Enter his friend Jordana. Yaye does an excellent job of ensuring that the readers feel connected to both characters.

“He desired her, sure, but some rules weren’t meant to be broken.”

The writing is on the wall about Dante and Jordana’s feelings for one another, but there are some obstacles such as pride and baggage from previous relationships that get in the way. The story has its fair amount of drama, lessons in forgiveness and understanding, and of course there is romance. Seduced By The Mogul is precisely how a friends-to-lovers story should be written!

DISCLAIMER: I received a complimentary copy of Seduced By The Mogul in exchange for an honest review.





Buy Seduced By The Mogul Here!