Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Guest Review: INKED ARMOR by Helena Hunting

(Goodreads Synopsis)

In this follow-up to Clipped Wings, the emotional love story continues between Hayden and Tenley; two young people who desperately want to love and be loved but are afraid to completely let go of their pasts.

In the wake of losing Tenley Page, tattooist Hayden Stryker's tumultuous past is haunting him. Plagued by nightmares about the murder of his parents, Hayden reaches out again to Tenley. Having run from the man she doesn't believe she deserves, Tenley finally lays her guilt to rest. Despite their intense physical attraction, Hayden and Tenley struggle to repair their fragile emotional connection. As Hayden gets closer to the truth, he must find a way to reconcile his guilt over his parents' death in order to keep the woman who finally cracked his armor, and found her way into his heart.


Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She’s putting her degree in English Lit to good use by writing contemporary erotic romance. She is the author of Clipped Wings, her debut novel, and Inked Armor.


Guest Review:

Proceed with caution.  There may be a few spoilers sprinkled in.

Inked Armor is the second installment to the Clipped Wings series. If you haven't Clipped Wings, do that first!

Inked Armor starts out with Tenley in Arden Hills, finishing up some details to the estate that was left her to by Connor and her parents. After she abruptly left, leaving Hayden confused and heartbroken, they reunite, but the ground for their relationship isn't as solid as it used to be.

I absolutely adored this book! I had been waiting to read it since I found out that it was going to be published! Since I've read them, a ton of stuff reminds me of either one or both of them. A song, a picture, anything. Hayden. Don't get me started on that delicious, broken, cupcake loving man!! He may be broken, and have issues, but seriously! The tattoos, piercings, and dirty mouth, combined with a soft side and a love of cupcakes? He is the perfect man!

I have to admit that I liked this book a tad more than the first for a few reasons. The first being Tenley! She's lighter in this book! Yeah, she definitely sucks for leaving Hayden, especially the way she did, but, after returning from Arden Hills, and signing over the estate she was supposed to share with Connor, she has a weight lifted. Closure. They both get some closure in this book for things in their pasts. They do it together. That's another thing I loved about Inked Armor. They're both completely messed up emotionally, but rely and support each other while working through the mess.

This book, and these characters will stick with you for a long time. You'll find yourself randomly thinking about them, wondering what they could be doing at this very second, if only their story were longer. I loved Tenley, but Hayden....he's always, ALWAYS going to duck with me. Helena knocked this outta the park. I'm excited to one day see these titles on a movie poster, or promotion. I'd definitely rather have me a Hayden than a Christian ANY DAY!

5 out of 5 stars

We wanted to do something special in honor of Hayden's love for Tenley's cupcakes.  Thanks to Helena for sharing Tenley's cupcake recipe (originally found HERE) and her frosting recipe (found HERE).

Vanilla Cupcakes

33 ratings
Difficulty Level:
Avg. of 20 reviews


  • 3 cups cake flour sifted
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup butter or margarine softened
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
Makes: Each cupcake serves 1.


Step 1

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Line pan with baking cups.
3. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
4. In large bowl, cream butter and sugar with electric mixer until light and fluffy.
5. Add eggs and vanilla; mix well.
6. Add flour mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition. Continue beating one minute.
7. Pour into prepared cups.
8. Bake 18-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center of cupcake comes out clean.
9. Cool 10 minutes.
10. Turn out onto cooling rack; cool completely.

Buttercream Icing

998 ratings
Difficulty Level:
Avg. of 754 reviews


  • 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine softened
  • 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
  • 4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar (approximately 1 lb.)
  • 2 tablespoons milk


  • Electric mixer
  • large bowl
  • Silicone Spatula
Makes: About 2 1/4 cups of icing.


1. In large bowl, beat shortening and butter with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla.
2. Gradually add sugar, one cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. Scrape sides and bottom of 
bowl often. When all sugar has been mixed in, icing will appear dry.
3. Gradually add milk; beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.
4.For thin (spreading) consistency icing, add 2 tablespoons light corn syrup, water or milk.
5. For Pure White Icing (stiff consistency), omit butter; substitute an additional 1/2 cup shortening for 
butter and add 1/2 teaspoon No-Color Butter Flavor. Add up to 4 tablespoons light corn syrup, water or 
milk to thin for icing cakes.
Keep bowl covered with a damp cloth until ready to use.
If using a hand mixer, beat shortening, butter, if used, and liquid first, then add sugar, as above. It may 
be necessary to add additional sugar for the correct consistency.


Amber is a Stay at home mom who has too much time 
on her hands. A self proclaimed 'Book Whore' who 
spends her days reading, and begging her Four year 
old daughter to STOP singing Wrecking Ball. She uses 
too many hashtags, and has a collections of book 
boyfriends as well as pictures of Stephen James on 
her Kindle.

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