Consolation Prize (Forbidden Men #8) by Linda Kage REVIEW, Excerpt & Giveaway

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Consolation Prize (Forbidden Men #8) by Linda Kage REVIEW, Excerpt & Giveaway

Don’t you just hate it when someone destroys all your carefully made plans?

I mean, I had goals: college to graduate in one semester, a future I was working hard to reach, and an image of myself I wanted the world to see. My life was stacked into these precisely placed blocks. But then Colton Gamble came along and knocked them all askew.

I hated how he messed everything up, how he could hog all my attention whenever he was around, how he made my pulse quicken–but only because he ticked me off…not because I was attracted to him. Oh! And I hated how he knew how attractive he was too, the shallow, full of himself, doesn’t take no for an answer, too-flirty, too cocky, extremely irritating jerk.

The boy had all the qualities that turned me off. Or so I thought.

One night he wasn’t quite the brainless, over-confident jerk I usually took him for.

One night, he took care of me when I was at my lowest. He opened up to me and made me open up to him.

Now I’m learning maybe he’s not what I first thought he was. And maybe I’M not what I first thought I was. Maybe it’s okay to rearrange a couple of my perfectly set blocks. Maybe, just maybe, I’ll stop worrying about what I’m afraid everyone else will think and finally reach for something I really want. It’s possible some of my plans need to be destroyed, and Colton Gamble is exactly the kind of mess I need in my life.

What do you think? Should I give him a try?

Desperately seeking your advice,
Julianna Radcliffe


“All you’d need is one taste of me and you’d forget about big brother completely.”

Gahhhhh! I loved this couple, not only did they suit each other perfectly, but they were separately both entertaining, real, honest, and sassy.

Julianna is a bar tender at Forbidden, and has a soft spot for the now married, Brandt Gamble. Brandt loves working with her, they have banter and are good friends, but he feels a little awkward at his wedding when he sees that Julianna is looking a little glum and alone at her table.

So, he goes to little brother Colton for help, and ask him to occupy his co-worker whilst he can concentrate on his new bride.

Little does he know that Colton has a huge crush on Julianna, and that the sexy Rihanna look-alike who is 4 years his senior, is just his type.

“Stop calling me Little Gamble. You compare me to him every time you say it, and I don’t like that. I’m not Brandt. I could never be Brandt, even if I tried. So this is who you got, baby doll. Colton David Gamble, and no one else.”

Julianna sees Colton as a bit of a pest, he’s brash, over-confident, and cocky. But, soon she discovers that he has many layers, and beneath his outer shell, lies a sensitive and caring man, who just wants to find the love of his life, just like his brothers.

The main focus of this story is the obstacles that the main couple face being in an inter-racial relationship, and the judgements that come from the people around them.

As usual with this series, there is a major bit of action to keep us on our toes, which yes, can be a little OTT, but it wouldn’t be the same without it. This series continues to be my favourite, with fantastic characters, and a family that love each other dearly.

Very sad to say goodbye to this series, but eager to find out what Kage will offer us next.

ARC gratefully received

Images featured in this review were created by me using stock images either purchased from deposit photo or from free stock sites.


“Juli can’t stop staring at you tonight.”

“Juli?” That name perked me to immediate attention. “Julianna’s here?”

I followed Asher’s gaze to a dimly-lit table in the back corner that bordered the dance floor. It was empty save for one individual, one of the loveliest individuals to grace the planet.

I have no clue how she did it, but Julianna Radcliffe always managed to look equal parts disdainfully untouchable and wet-dream sexy.

Tonight, her dress was pure sin. She wore a long, strapless light gray number that had a front slit, exposing a perfectly toned leg most the way up her thigh and a bustier top that hugged proud, ample breasts. The paleness of her dress made the tone of her skin appear even darker than usual, which made my stomach knot with tension because I yearned to investigate all that dark-dark skin, see how it felt under my hands, how it tasted against my tongue, how it trembled when I stroked it.

Yet I knew without a shadow of a doubt there was no way that would ever happen, because that lady right here was a ball breaker. You could tell it by the straight-backed, poised way she held herself, as if she might as well be behind a boardroom table, doling out punishments to her inferior insubordinates, and by the way she had no tolerance for stupidity or players. I swear, her stare alone could shrivel a guy’s family jewels to impotent nothingness. I usually had the itching urge to cover my junk whenever I talked to her.

And yet she was an irresistible challenge to idiots like me. Not just because she was model-worthy stunning, which she was. Nothing on her was ever out of place; it always struck me with the urge to mess her up…in the best ways possible. But because I felt the need to be the exception to the rule, the one who got past her defenses and scaled that impossible mountain.

Brandt groaned.

I glanced at him, forcing my brain back to the problem at hand, that being Julianna and her inability to take her eyes off my newly married brother. “Hasn’t it been months since you and she were over?” I asked, confused.

He sent me a sharp glance. “Over? We never started. There’s nothing to be over. Juli and I didn’t even finish the one date we went on.”

Asher sniffed. “Well, it looks as if she’s still willing to finish it.”

“Dammit.” Brandt glanced toward his wife. “I hope Sarah doesn’t see her watching me. I don’t want anything upsetting her on our wedding day.”

Asher shook his head. “So, why’d you even invite Juli?”

“I work with her.” Brandt moodily tugged at the collar of his tux.

It seemed odd to me that someone so classically beautiful worked in a nightclub as a bartender. To me, Julianna clearly belonged on a runway, displaying the latest fashion, or—

“It would’ve been strange to invite everyone else and leave her out. Besides, we’re still friends. She’s probably my favorite coworker.”

“Hey,” Asher muttered, offended since he occasionally bartended at Forbidden with Brandt too.

Brandt rolled his eyes. “You don’t count.”

But that only seemed to confuse Asher more. “Why don’t I count?”

Ignoring him, Brandt brought his hand up to his mouth so he could chew on his thumbnail. “We need to distract her somehow. Someone needs to…” Trailing off, he turned slowly toward me, and the intent in his gaze was pretty damn clear.

I paused mid-sip. “Wait, what? You can’t possibly want me to distract her?”

About the Author

linda kage

I grew up on a dairy farm in the Midwest as the youngest of eight children. Now I live in Kansas with my husband, daughter, and our nine cuckoo clocks. My life’s been blessed with lots of people to learn from and love. Writing’s always been a major part my world, and I’m so happy to finally share some of my stories with other romance lovers.

I’m a member of Romance Writers of America and a local chapter, Midwest Romance Writers, who meets monthly in the Kansas City area. I’ve been through a writing correspondence class in children’s literature from The Institute of Children’s Literature, and then I continued my writing lessons by majoring in English with an emphasis in creative fiction writing from Pittsburg State University.

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More in this Series

Price of a Kiss (Forbidden Men #1) To Professor, with Love (Forbidden Men #2) Be My Hero (Forbidden Men #3) With Every Heartbeat (Forbidden Men #4) A Perfect Ten (Forbidden Men #5) Worth It (Forbidden Men #6) The Girl's Got Secrets (Forbidden Men #7) Priceless (Forbidden Men #8) consolation-prize-by-linda-kage


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