Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Release Day Review: Happy Birthday by B.D. Roca ~ (Review, Author Guest Post, Excerpt + Giveaway)

Release Day Review: Happy Birthday by B.D. Roca ~ (Review, Author Guest Post, Excerpt + Giveaway)

Book: Happy Birthday
Author: B.D. Roca
Publisher: Dreamspinner
Pages: 62
Release Date: January 13, 2016
Type: Mystery/Suspense

Buy The Book:


Jake Rushman is on the run, but it’s too late. He’s being tracked by an expert.

Motorcycle Club Enforcer Nick is tough, but even he has a conscience. It’s slowly destroying him, together with memories of his parents’ ugly deaths. Nick eliminates the guilty, but Jake Rushman is the innocent witness to a murder. It will be one kill too many.

Determined to find redemption, Nick plans to trade his life for Jake’s. Neither man counts on the fierce, powerful bond that the collision of their opposing worlds brings, and Jake refuses to let Nick sacrifice himself. He offers Nick the one thing he's never had: hope.

But with a violent past tracking them, Nick might be forced to do the one thing he promised himself he never would—kill again.


Nick had never known tenderness, and he was finding that it terrified him. Standing under the warm water, Jake running the soap over his skin, turning the showerhead to one side so that he could really lather Nick’s skin, wash away the grime and sweat of the last few days, he leaned his head back against the tiles and closed his eyes.

He couldn’t look Jake in the face. But closing out the world meant that every nuance of the other man’s touch was magnified. And it was good, so good. He’d never had this before. He was twenty-three years old, he’d fucked plenty of guys, but he’d never had this one very simple thing: standing under a fall of water and another gently washing him, hands, fingers, running over every hard, muscular plane of his body so gently and yet so hungrily.

Jake was giving him this and yet taking so much pleasure in it himself. Nick didn’t know how to deal with it, this undemanding tenderness.

“Jake,” he said, on a rough thread of sound.

His fists were bunched again, clenched hard back against the tile. Jake folded one in his own hand, lifted it to his lips. Pressed his mouth to the scarred knuckles. “Yeah?” he murmured. “Enjoying this?”

“Too much.”

“You’re not very kind to yourself, are you?”

Jake was wry and understanding, and Nick wondered just how he could know that. How could Jake, a guy from a different world, understand even that basic fact about him?

“These scars on your hands. How did you get them?”

“Fights, a long time back. But mostly engines,” Nick croaked, and cleared his throat. His cock was hard, and he felt too vulnerable. “I work on engines. Cars. Bikes.”

“When you’re not… scaring the shit out of people or blowing their brains out?”

Jake was mocking him. He was teasing, and Nick didn’t know how to handle that either. His gray eyes widened as he looked at Jake’s face, the face, he realized, that he liked the most of any he’d ever seen, and Jake smiled. He shifted the showerhead again, the water sliding down over Nick’s skin, washing the suds away, and Nick realized something else. The last two days had been a series of firsts. He’d gotten caught up in a target, probably the only one worth getting caught up in. 

Author Guest Post:

Tracy and Mari, thank you for having me on your blog, it’s great to be here.

I’m here to talk about Happy Birthday, my story about bikers, hitmen and guys on the run. I had a lot of fun writing it. I’ve always loved stories about tough guys and morally ambiguous characters, and one of the MC’s, Nick, a motorcycle club enforcer fits the bill perfectly.

Nick, born into the club life, is slowly being destroyed by it. He has blood, a lot of blood on his hands and the guilt is killing him. In a final grasp at redemption he decides to trade his life for Jake’s, an innocent witness he has been sent to eliminate. What he doesn’t count on is the chemistry between the two of them when they finally meet. It’s explosive and Jake, tougher than he appears, refuses to allow Nick to trade his life away. A whole lot of consequences naturally follow.

I love TV shows like Sons Of Anarchy (naturally!) and I’ll kick back and watch a great assassin movie anytime. While I was writing Happy Birthday I had the ultimate hitman song playing a lot as a soundtrack: Tricky’s Bury The Evidence. That is one sinister, dark song and fitted Nick’s life so well. I had other songs playing, The Kidney Thieves Before I’m Dead, and Iggy Pop’s I Wanna Be Your Dog, because the story opens on a very tense road trip, and those two numbers truly fit the bill and Nick’s mood as he tracks Jake, intent on escape. I could really imagine those songs blasting out of the car’s windows on a hot summer’s day.

So there you are: a mini-soundtrack to Nick and Jake’s story.

*** Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie in exchange for a fair and honest review. ***

Nick is a Motorcycle Club enforcer sent by his uncle, the MC’s Vice-President, to eliminate the latest threat to their club, Jake Rushman, an innocent witness to a drug-related murder. Nick is not too keen on killing Jake, though, so he decides to trade his life for Jake’s.

Jake is on the run, knowing he’s being followed by someone who’s trying to silence him. Once he meets Nick, he figures out what the other man intends to do, sacrifice himself for Jake, and Jake refuses to allow this, offering him another solution and hope of a better life, one that they can probably share.

However, Nick’s uncle is not too happy about this turn of events and wants his best enforcer back, leaving Nick thinking he only has one way out even if it’s the last thing he wants to do, killing again.

This was a different take into the MC world. For one, Nick is not all too happy with being part of the Motorcycle Club, having been roped into it after his junkie parents died, leaving him under his uncle’s not-so-tender care. He also has a conscience and can’t in good faith kill someone who is obviously innocent like Jake is. And Jake is not a shy wallflower, he is resourceful, intelligent and strong and is just what Nick’s needs in that point of his life when he has just about given up. The two together are great, they have good rapport and chemistry and work together quite well against their common threat.

The book was very good, kept my interest from beginning to end and I absolutely loved how it all played out for Nick and Jake in the end. All in all, a very enjoyable read!  

Rating: 4.5 Stars!!!

About the author:

B.D. Roca spent her early years in Brisbane, in a series of crumbling old houses laced with the smell of frangipani and surrounded by the hum of cicadas. Her gran raised her on ghost stories, quirky family history, and told her to beat up anyone who gave her attitude. This was not advice she took, although it does make a certain amount of sense. It may also account for her love of tough characters with a heart of gold. Between the old houses, feral cats, steamy heat, and history lessons, it was pure Australian gothic. She’s traveled a lot since then, but those times are still a powerful influence both on her worldview and writing.

Where to find the author:

Twitter: @bd_roca


1 eBook of Happy Birthday by B.D. Roca and 1 $10 Amazon (or Dreamspinners) gift card.

To Enter: 

Leave a comment telling us about your favorite characters that are part of an MC world or are assassins, MC, military or otherwise. B.D. would love to know if they match some of hers! 

Please leave your e-mail on the comments so we can contact you if you win.

This giveaway will close on Sunday, January 17th, at 9pm CST. Good luck! 


  1. i have to say i love all the MC books out right now

  2. I found Vincent and Frank from Chance Assassin by Nicole Castle fascinating.


  3. There are a lot of them. I like John Wiltshire's characters and of course all SE. jakes all dangerous and wild "agent" men.

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