Path of the Traitors by @cyallowitz Lives Up to the Hype! #epicfantasy #bookreview #IARTG


Path of the Traitors Final

 

Title: Path of the Traitors (Legends of Windemere Book 14)

Author: Charles E. Yallowitz

Genre: Epic Fantasy, Fantasy

 

Book Blurb:

Hated and distrusted, Queen Trinity must leave the shadows and reach for redemption.

 

With their final battle on the horizon, the champions are faced with a long-lost piece of the prophecy. Unable to search for the crests that are rumored to be the key to survival, they must turn to a band of their former enemies for help. Sinister desires and hopes for redemption collide as Queen Trinity of the Chaos Elves leads the hunt and struggles to keep her companions on the path of heroism. Monsters, traps, mysteries, and their own pasts will rise up to stand in the way of these people who have spent their entire lives committing sins. Throughout it all, another old enemy is lurking in the shadows and determined to claim her own delicious prize.

 

By the end of their journey, those who survive will learn that being a hero is more than simply stepping into the light.

 

My Review:

This is the second to last book in the Legends of Windemere series and I wasn’t sure what to expect. I mean, after the last book ended the way it did, was this installment going to be similar in its darkness and death? In a word, no. Yallowitz instead chose to focus on Queen Trinity, one of my favorite characters.

 

Baron Kernaghan is uncontainable in his rage and several of his underlings hide in stark fear. Queen Trinity is on a journey to find the missing crests and fulfill a long-lost prophesy, but little does she know that the path she’s on is one of redemption and fighting for what’s right. She’s done a lot of bad things in the name of the Baron and it’s time to own up to it. Can she step out of the shadows and be the leader she’s meant to be, or will she stick to the sidelines?

 

I really can’t say much more because I don’t want to give away any spoilers. What I can tell you is that this book is fantastic, even though the Champions are mostly absent. This is about Trinity and what lays before her. Yallowitz portrays her as a sympathetic character even though she’s been an enemy of the Champions for many, many books. I connected with Trinity and her growth was dramatic. I can’t wait for the final book and all that will transpire.

 

If you enjoy epic fantasy, I highly recommend this one! It can be read as a standalone but it’s such a better experience to read them all.

 

Favorite Character/Quote: “A symbol’s real power isn’t in its form, but in its longevity. Tell their story and use it to promote peace.”

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Path-Traitors-Legends-Windemere-Book-ebook/dp/B075PDTSZM

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Path-Traitors-Legends-Windemere-Book-ebook/dp/B075PDTSZM

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Path-Traitors-Legends-Windemere-Book-ebook/dp/B075PDTSZM

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36241823-path-of-the-traitors

 

Author Biography:

Charles E. Yallowitz was born, raised, and educated in New York. Then he spent a few years in Florida, realized his fear of alligators, and moved back to the Empire State. When he isn’t working hard on his epic fantasy stories, Charles can be found cooking or going on whatever adventure his son has planned for the day. ‘Legends of Windemere’ is his first series, but it certainly won’t be his last.

 

Social Media Links:

Website https://legendsofwindemere.com/

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/CharlesYallowitz/

Twitter https://twitter.com/cyallowitz

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6965804.Charles_E_Yallowitz

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

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The Vatican Children by @LincolnJCole is Creepy, Thought-Provoking #bookreview #occult #UF


The-Vatican-Children---kindle-cover

 

Title: The Vatican Children (World of Shadows Book 2)

Author: Lincoln Cole

Genre: Occult Thriller/Urban Fantasy

 

Book Blurb:

Once the events of Everett are finally behind him, Father Niccolo Paladina reluctantly decides to assist the Occult Demon Hunter Arthur Vangeest in chasing down the enemy that narrowly escaped them back in Washington. Niccolo knows how important it is to bring the man to justice for the crimes he has committed against the Vatican as well as humanity.

Father Paladina knows that the enemy has something big planned against the Church and that it will be worse than anything he has seen before. If they can keep the man on the run, however, he won’t be able to finish his plan. That’s the plan, at least, though finding him turns out to be more dangerous than anticipated.

Arthur, on the other hand, is still hoping to earn some redemption for his actions in West Virginia nine months ago. He seeks to atone for his mistakes and become a better man. Atonement, however, can be difficult to come by…

Especially when the stakes are so high.

 

My Review:

The Vatican Children picks up right where The Everett Exorcism left off. Father Paladina teams up with Arthur Vangeest to hunt down the Bishop to make him pay for what he did back in Washington. Somehow the Bishop escaped their clutches but that could work to Paladina’s and Arthur’s advantage, that is, if they can catch him before he completes his evil plan. What they don’t anticipate is the Bishop’s use of innocent children to enact his plan. Arthur vows to never kill again and his path to redemption is within his grasp but then hell is unleashed, and he must choose: save one life or save many.

 

Wow! Another brilliant book in the World of Shadows universe. The suspense moved the plot at a frantic pace while the characters made me care what happened to them. Both Arthur and Father P. (as I affectionally call him) must dig deep to overcome both their own insecurities and what must be done to save the lives of many. The Bishop is a malicious antagonist but in a delicious way. I found myself wondering how he grew to be so wicked, so sinful, so hell-bent on destroying the Church.

 

The Vatican Children brings the reader at the heart of an eternal battle between good and evil. Creepy, thought-provoking and thrilling to read, I highly recommend this book, though please read The Everett Exorcism first. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

 

Favorite Character/Quote: “He had to admit, just seeing her caused his heart to race and filled him with emotion. She represented his second chance at life, a chance to try again. This time, he would get it right.”

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0777SDGCL

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B0777SDGCL

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0777SDGCL

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36059707-the-vatican-children

 

lincoln-cole

 

Author Biography:

Lincoln Cole is a Columbus-based author who enjoys traveling and has visited many different parts of the world, including Australia and Cambodia, but always returns home to his pugamonster and wife. His love for writing was kindled at an early age through the works of Isaac Asimov and Stephen King and he enjoys telling stories to anyone who will listen.

 

If you would like to sign up for his newsletter and receive news and special offers, then please go to:

https://LincolnCole.net

 

Social Media Links:

https://twitter.com/LincolnjCole

https://plus.google.com/+LincolnColeAuthor

https://www.facebook.com/LincolnJCole/

https://www.pinterest.com/authorlincolncole/

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

Merry Christmas, Henry by @Aubreywynne51 Will Make You Believe in Love! #bookreview #ASMSG


Merry-Christmas-Henry-Generic

 

Title: Merry Christmas, Henry

Author: Aubrey Wynne

Genre: Short Stories, Fantasy, Holiday Fiction

 

Book Blurb:

A holiday fantasy short story for the romantic.

 

Henry, a shy and talented artist, moonlights as a security guard at a museum and loses his heart to a beautiful, melancholy woman in a painting. As his obsession grows, he finds a kindred soul who helps him in his search for happiness. On Christmas Eve, Henry dares to take a chance on love and fulfill his dream.

 

My Review:

Merry Christmas, Henry is a beautiful, heart-wrenching short story about the magic of love and Christmas.

 

Henry is a lonely artist working as a night watchman at a museum in Chicago. He’s shy, especially when it comes to women, but that doesn’t get him down. Instead of talking to a beautiful woman, he commits her image to memory and goes home to paint her in his upstairs apartment.

 

For the past twenty years, his heart yearns for a sad woman in a painting hanging in the museum. There’s something about her that captures his heart and no other woman can compare. He only wishes he could add some color to her dreary painting. Maybe then, she’s look his way and smile. That’s when an idea blossoms in his heart. Can he? Will he get arrested? It’s worth the risk to bring some beauty to the love of his life.

 

Aubrey Wynne has penned one of the best short stories I’ve ever read. It’s filled with emotion, mystery, magic and all takes place at Christmastime in a museum. Henry is someone I can relate to as he’s an artist who discovers what life is all about. Love is a core theme in this moving story. The characters are fleshed out, the plot moves quickly and Wynne grabs the reader from the beginning and doesn’t let go. The ending came too quickly because I wanted to read more. Highly recommend!

 

Favorite Character/Quote: “His fingers itched to reach out and pull her from the painting and hold her, soothe her, give her comfort. Henry knew that if she could turn and face him, he would be looking at the most exquisite creature he’d ever seen. His hand shook as he reached out to touch the canvas.”

 

My Rating: 5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

https://www.books2read.com/u/4EWKZg

 

Aubrey Wynne

 

Author Biography:

Bestselling and award-winning author Aubrey Wynne resides in the Midwest with her husband, dogs, horses, mule and barn cats. She is an elementary teacher by trade, champion of children and animals by conscience, and author by night. Obsessions include history, travel, trail riding, and all things Christmas.

 

Her short stories Merry Christmas, Henry and Pete’s Mighty Purty Privies won the Preditors & Editors Reader’s Choice in 2013 and 2014. Dante’s Gift, first in A Chicago Christmas series, received the 2016 Golden Quill, Aspen Gold, and Heart of Excellence awards.

 

Her upcoming series “A Vintage Romance” was inspired by tales of her stepfather, who served in the British Air Force in WWII. Wynne’s medieval fantasy series “Medieval Encounters” begins with Rolf’s Quest, 2016 NTRWA Great Expectations winner.

 

Social Media Links:

Website: http://aubreywynne.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Aubreywynne51

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aubrey.wynne.7

 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/Aubreywynne51
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/17695894-aubrey-wynne

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

The Reframe: Reframe Relationships by @B_Matha_Maddox #bookreview #selfhelp #Men


The Reframe

 

Title: The Reframe: Reframe Relationships

Author: Brian Maddox

Genre: Relationships, Self-Help, Self-Improvement

 

Book Blurb:

The Reframe is a self-improvement book with the primary goal of attracting a desirable mate from a male’s perspective.
This book is composed of three main sections Social, Health and Wealth. These categories cover a wide array of topics and link them back into the main idea of finding a meaningful relationship that will stand the test of time.

How can you attract and maintain a relationship in perpetuity with a partner you truly desire?
The Reframe doesn’t just tell you to be confident, genuine and non-needy like so many other books in today’s men relationship book market. Instead it collectively shows you how to bring that confidence out of you naturally, ensuring you get the most out of your relationships and out of life.
This book tackles the idea of social conditioning and therein challenges the reader to push him/herself in interesting ways. The author argues that these somewhat unorthodox tactics and “reframes” are needed given societies view on relationships are not working as intended, citing an ever-increasing trend in failed marriages.

This book is a must read and does succeed in making the reader think about relationships in a most interesting, albeit alternative way.

 

My Review:

When it comes to relationships, it’s important to understand differing points of view and sometimes it’s necessary to reframe your thinking. While this book is geared for men, as a woman, I found it useful and intriguing. See, we’re all social creatures and we crave the same thing: to be loved and to love in return.

 

In The Reframe, Maddox takes a logical approach to dating and relationships. He incorporates today’s digital societal norms and breaks down what it takes to be more confident, attract a desirous mate and maintain the relationship.  Maddox doesn’t just tell men how to be more confident but shows through examples how to naturally be the best man he can be. It’s not about fancy cars, money and Adonis physique that makes a successful relationship but by being genuine and engaging with a woman which reveals a man’s true heart. No mind games or tricks; just a man and woman interacting in a meaningful way.

 

Maddox asked for a female point of view and here is mine on The Reframe:

 

Men, you need to read this book! Not only is this an invaluable guide to relationships but Maddox speaks from experience. When he’s describing women and their actions, he’s spot-on. I found myself nodding in agreement about how women think and feel. If I didn’t know better, I’d think this was written by a woman.

 

A modern relationship book that will reframe your perspective on dating, relationships and connecting with your partner. I wish I had read this book when I was dating. What Covey did for time management, Maddox does for relationships. Highly recommend!

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Reframe-Relationships-Brian-Maddox-ebook/dp/B01M0SG80F

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Reframe-Relationships-Brian-Maddox-ebook/dp/B01M0SG80F

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Reframe-Relationships-Brian-Maddox-ebook/dp/B01M0SG80F

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32078945-the-reframe

 

Author Biography:

Brian Maddox (1988) was born in Edmonton, Alberta Canada. For the first ten years after high school Brian continued to find himself in post secondary studies. After achieving his Bachelor of Commerce (BCOM) in 2011 at the University of Alberta, Brian landed a desk job as a full-time accountant where he completed his Charter (CPA) under the CMA legacy program in 2015. The choice to pursue never ending school seemingly paid off allowing him to purchase his first home by the time he was 25. Unfortunately, this monetary “success” didn’t carry its way much into his relationships which motivated Brian to write his first officially published book, “The Reframe: Reframing Relationships.” This book sites that a re-frame is needed with regard to relationships in today’s society given the ever-increasing rate of marriages that now fail. Brian continues to spend the bulk of his time working as a full-time accountant, reading self-help books and studying for his CFA designation examinations. He hopes that his book will make a pivotal difference in the lives of its readers and ambitiously hopes that it even helps to straighten out society’s misguided view on relationships.

 

Social Media Links:

Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/Brian-Maddox/e/B01M15DF0G/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Twitter @B_Matha_Maddox

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TheReframe

Goodreads Author Page https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15820383.Brian_Maddox

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

September Sale — Take 25% off All Author Promotion Services! Stock Up and Use Later #marketing


NNLAP September Sale

 

Stock up on services and save 25%! They include the following —

 

Tier 2: Book/blog promotion and marketing for a small fee. You have the option of the following and the fee is $11.50 per service:

 

Author Interview

Author Spotlight

Book Spotlight (includes extended excerpt)

Book Series Spotlight

Cover Reveal

Trailer Reveal

Guest Post (your choice of topic)

Top Ten (your choice of topic)

​Character Interview

 

Twitter Book Blast with Graphics (one day – 7 tweets- I’ll tweet about your book sale to my Twitter followers)

 

Twitter Sale Service (one day – 8 custom tweets – I’ll tweet about your book sale with cover/memes/graphics you provide)

 

 

Book Review by either Mr. N or Mrs. N (depending on when you need it by, a book review ranges in price)

  • 12 Weeks $11.50
  • 2 Weeks $85.50
  • 4 Weeks $45.00
  • Rush 3 Business Days $143.00

 

Amazon US Ranking as of September 7, 2017 is 11,321

Amazon CA Ranking as of September 7, 2017 is 616 * Amazon Top 1000 Reviewer *

Amazon UK Ranking as of September 7, 2017 is 31,448

Goodreads Ranking as of September 7, 2017 is #9 Top Readers, #16 Top Reviewers, #49 Best Reviewers (updated weekly)

 

Tier 3: Advertisement Button on the left sidebar. Authors and professionals in the book industry can advertise on this website for a super-low fee of $6 a week/$20 a month (plus Paypal and processing fees).

 

We’re also offering a Top Spot Advertisement Button for our clients. You will be at the very top of the sidebar and this is one spot only. First come, first serve.

  • 1 Month $50
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  • 6 Months $240
  • 12 Months $450 (plus Paypal and processing fees)

Note: November and December 2017 booked 

 

 

Tier 4: Social Media Graphics and Memes. I am now offering a memes package plus Social Media Headers.

 

  • 5 memes using royalty-free images and quotes from your books $20 (plus Paypal and processing fees)
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** Sale pricing does not apply to virtual assistant services.**
Please fill out the information below and we’ll be happy to get back to you. Due to the volume of inquiries, it may take anywhere from 24 hours to three business days for us to respond.

The Life and Times of Ichabod Brooks by @cyallowitz #BookReview! #IARTG #TuesdayBookBlog


the-life-times-of-ichabod-brooks

 

Title: The Life and Times of Ichabod Brooks

Author: Charles E. Yallowitz

Genre: Fantasy, Short Stories

 

Book Blurb:

Enter the world of Windemere with 11 action adventure short stories featuring a man who is out to make an honest living.

 

Some heroes seek fame. Some seek fortune. Others simply want to save the world. Ichabod Brooks only wants to put food on the table for his family.

 

Known and respected as the man who can get any job done, Ichabod has seen his share of adventure. Most of which have been highly exaggerated by bards. Still, the man has his famous reputation for a reason. Whether it be climbing a temperamental mountain for eggs or escorting orphans to their new homes, Ichabod takes every job seriously and makes sure he is as prepared as he can be. Not that it helps since things always take a turn for the worse.

 

My Review:

I’ve been a devout follower of the Legends of Windemere series so when I saw a spin-off of sorts, I knew I had to read it.

 

Ichabod Brooks is a man who’s a mercenary for hire and he’s always up for a new adventure. If you need a magical item or need some help rescuing orphans, Ichabod is your man. His wife handles the contracts and is the brain behind the business, which I loved. He’s just out having adventures and trying to play down his exploits. Oh, and he can bake, too. These are the stories along with a one sentence synopsis:

 

Ichabod Brooks & the Starwind Egg – Every ten years, the birds lay starwind eggs and it’s up to Ichabod to snag one for his client but this time, his luck might just be up.

 

Ichabod Brooks & the Phantom Archer – Ichabod is judging an archery contest but when the contestants get killed, Ichabod must take on the challenger for himself.

 

Ichabod Brooks & the King of Nowhere – An emerging cult wants to unite the kingdoms under the banner of lawlessness and the only one who can save everyone is a man knows as the King of Nowhere.

 

Ichabod Brooks & the Island of Mirrors – Waking up on an island of mirrors is disturbing enough but Ichabod must work together with an old enemy or wind up worse off than death. (My favorite story!)

 

Ichabod Brooks & the Yellow Ogres – With the wife away, Ichabod is relishing in time spent alone but when a band of yellow ogres start stealing shamans, he must figure out how to stop them before his wife returns.

 

Ichabod Brooks & the Resurrection Bowl – Of all the gin joints … Ichabod wishes he could pass on this adventure but he doesn’t have a choice so off he goes in search of an ancient artifact that can resurrect the dead.

 

Ichabod Brooks & Toy Tower – Ichabod must defeat a tower of traps created by a crazy toymaker in order to receive the grand prize at the finish line but has his luck just run out?

 

Ichabod Brooks & the Jester Flute – A bard has stolen a cursed flute and now Ichabod’s reality is anything but. (My second favorite story!)

 

Ichabod Brooks & the Orphan’s Shadow – Hired to escort orphans to their new homes, Ichabod is caught off-guard when the orphans suddenly fall ill and death is right around the corner unless Ichabod can figure out what’s going on.

 

Ichabod Brooks & Zaria’s Kiss –  Ichabod and friends are on an adventure to recover the Purity Goddess’s relics from the sea but before they know it, something appears to s-s-strike them down.

 

Ichabod Brooks & the Vixen of Errenshar – Olivia Thorne has been a seductive enemy, thwarting Ichabod’s every move but this time, she might have the upper hand.

 

If you’re looking for adventurous short stories with character depth, a solid plot and colorful dialogue, pick up The Life and Times of Ichabod Brooks today. Yallowitz’s writing style is quick-witted, full of adventurous fun and original. Highly recommend!

 

Favorite Character/Quote: “They also don’t have your wife making deals that you can’t say no to. She mentioned that you’re getting three times the usual pay because this baby is going to be prepared for Duke Solomon’s wedding. Personally, I’m looking forward to your wife’s cooking after this. Surprised your gut isn’t huge considering that woman can make a pot roast even the gods would praise. Did you happen to bring some of her dishes for the road?”

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Life-Times-Ichabod-Brooks-ebook/dp/B073NR7XKC/

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Life-Times-Ichabod-Brooks-ebook/dp/B073NR7XKC/

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Life-Times-Ichabod-Brooks-ebook/dp/B073NR7XKC/

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35533624-the-life-times-of-ichabod-brooks

 

charles-yallowitz

 

Author Biography:

Charles Yallowitz was born and raised on Long Island, NY, but he has spent most of his life wandering his own imagination in a blissful haze. Occasionally, he would return from this world for the necessities such as food, showers, and Saturday morning cartoons. One day he returned from his imagination and decided he would share his stories with the world. After his wife decided that she was tired of hearing the same stories repeatedly, she convinced him that it would make more sense to follow his dream of being a fantasy author. So, locked within the house under orders to shut up and get to work, Charles brings you Legends of Windemere. He looks forward to sharing all of his stories with you, and his wife is happy he finally has someone else to play with.

 

Social Media Links:

Blog: www.legendsofwindemere.com
Twitter: @cyallowitz
Facebook: Charles Yallowitz


Website: www.charleseyallowitz.com

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

Schism (The Detective Mike Eiser Series Book 1) by @ClabePolk #BookReview! #suspense #FridayReads


Schism

 

Title: Schism (The Detective Mike Eiser Series Book 1)

Author: Clabe Polk

Genre: Detective Mystery, Suspense

 

Book Blurb:

Atlanta’s infamous Bowen Homes Projects is no place for children, especially two teenaged boys. If anyone knows, it’s Kat Thomas. The single mom has seen enough senseless death and broken dreams to last a lifetime, and she is seeking a different future in Poplar Bluffs.

But dark shadows fall on even the brightest futures.
“Mad Dog” Lincoln lives up to his name every day on the streets; never more so than the time he killed Kat’s fiancé to leave her broke, pregnant, and alone. Now, the Dog is demanding one of her sons as the newest recruit for his gang, the Raven’s Claws.

Kat is desperate to save her family from a life of crime, but a single mother is no match for a raging criminal like Mad Dog, whom even the police avoid. All but one, that is: Detective Mike Eiser. Determined to end Lincoln’s reign of terror once and for all, Eiser will soon discover that ruining Lincoln’s plans might just turn a mad dog rabid.

 

My Review:

This was a long read and but one that kept the reader interested.  The plot seemed centered on the thug and it kinda surprised this reader to realize it was a book about a police detective.  For a good part of the book, Det. Eisner was nowhere to be found.  The character of MD seemed indestructible and that wore on me after awhile.  I would have had a certain gun aimed three feet higher for a more permanent solution.  The book turned out to be a modern day urban version of a Mike Hammer mystery.

 

I think fans of old fashioned film noire detective movies and books will love this book.  It’s a page turner that keeps a reader on the edge of their seat.

 

A four-star work because the plot arc of MD’s focus on one family wasn’t really well defined.  Ran on a bit but the great action scenes did allay that somewhat.  A worthy addition to the annals of great detective novels.

 

My Rating: 4 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Schism-Detective-Mike-Eiser-Book-ebook/dp/B01M7Z2ACI

 

Barnes and Noble https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/schism-clabe-polk/1121963089?ean=2940156962976

 

iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/schism/id1172999648?mt=11

 

Kobo https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/schism-26

 

Smashwords https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/679160

 

Google Play https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Clabe_Polk_Schism?id=OfdvDQAAQBAJ&hl=en

 

Overdrive https://www.overdrive.com/media/3030036/schism

 

Blio https://www.blio.com/web1/actions/searchHandler.do?key=BTKEY0019840262%20&nextPage=booksDetails&parentNum=12848&itemNum=ITEM:5

 

Scribd https://www.scribd.com/book/330015674/Schism

 

Author Biography:

Clabe Polk is into a second career as a fiction author.  Retiring after more than thirty-seven years of professional environmental protection, including criminal law enforcement and criminal law enforcement training, Mr. Polk has taken his professional experience, scientific background, a lifetime of practical skills from designing and building houses to music, his love of reading, research and writing and combined them into action stories about real people told in a tongue-in-cheek style all his own.

He currently lives in Powder Springs, Georgia with his wife, two daughters and the family’s cockerpoo named ‘Annie’.

Clabe’s creation, Poplar Bluffs, Georgia, hometown of Detective Mike Eiser is a community all its own. Margie over at Bertie’s Café is never without a friendly cup of coffee or a glass of sweet tea and she has her ears tuned to take in whatever you’re talking about, so y’all come see us!

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://clabepolkmysteryadve.ipage.com/index.html

Twitter https://twitter.com/ClabePolk

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Clabe-Polk/378843275625201

Pinterest http://www.pinterest.com/clabep/clabe-polks-book-board/

Google+ https://plus.google.com/112644276834570344182

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

 

How the Brain Connects to Cognitive and Behavioral Change #BookReview #Medicine #Health


 

Title: How the Brain Connects to Cognitive & Behavioral Change

Author: Robert Lavine PhD.

Genre: Medicine, Health, Clinical Psychology, Cognitive Neuroscience

 

Book Blurb:

Not only do nerve impulses from the brain affect human behavior, but emerging evidence shows that practice and treatment can change connections in the nervous system. Here you can explore brain-cognitive-behavioral connections based on neuroscience and psychology. Brain imaging, other tech tools. and cognitive-behavioral therapy are at the leading edge of these advances in clinical neuroscience.

Eye contact as a social response affected by oxytocin hormone, anxiety-related signals from the prefrontal lobe, the brain’s default mode, and cellphone effects are only some of the areas explored. These stories describe how neuroscience can advance our understanding and treatment of social anxiety, autistic spectrum disorder, PTSD, and depression, and how resilience, technology, and treatment can affect people who face these and other challenges.

Among the challenges discussed are childhood stress, tics, and stroke rehabilitation. These stories are works in progress. If you are a reader fascinated by the human brain’s connections to behavior, a student of psychology, medicine, nursing, counseling, or therapy, or a clinician, you may find these stories surprising—in a good way.

 

My Review:

I’ve always been fascinated by how the brain works and how it relates to our impulses and behaviors. Can science work together with clinical psychology and technology to help us understand and treat such things as anxiety, PTSD, depression and autism? Dr. Robert Lavine thinks so and after reading his book, so do I.

 

Clinical neuroscience can be dry reading but Dr. Lavine’s writing style is easy-going, knowledgeable and insightful. Each chapter deals with another treatment/theory and he adds applicable examples the reader can understand to support his findings. Lavine quotes from numerous studies and professionals in the medical community which adds validity to his thesis. While he talks about various treatments, he lets the reader come to their own conclusion, which I appreciate.

 

The best part of the book is Lavine’s repeated statement about discussing all options with a physician and/or professional. I like that because it reaffirms my belief that while research is great (and required for anyone in this day and age), it’s always best to discuss it with your doctor before starting a new treatment.

 

I highly recommend this book to anyone looking to live a healthy life because once you understand how your brain relates to the rest of your body, everything else makes sense.

 

Favorite Character/Quote: “How do some people do better than expected despite poverty, abuse, and other major challenges? … the ability to muster inner resources, an inner ‘locus of control’, and an ability to re-evaluate a threatening situation in a more realistic and empowering manner that encourages people to take meaningful actions to help themselves or others.”

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/How-Brain-Connects-Cognitive-Behavioral-ebook/dp/B06X9BM7BR/

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/How-Brain-Connects-Cognitive-Behavioral-ebook/dp/B06X9BM7BR/

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/How-Brain-Connects-Cognitive-Behavioral-ebook/dp/B06X9BM7BR/

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34536770-how-the-brain-connects-to-cognitive-behavioral-change

 

Author Biography:

Robert Lavine, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist and recent Associate Professor at George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences who has always been fascinated by the human brain and its connections to thought and behavior. He has recently published on the intersect of neuroscience, psychology, and well-being for The Atlantic, The Scientist, The Medical Educator, and Psychology Today. His new books are “How the Brain Connects to Cognitive & Behavioral Change” (2017) and “Neuroscience ABCs: Human Brain Physiology Guide” (2016). His blog, Neuro Behavioral Betterment, is in Psychology Today.

 

Social Media Links:

Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/Robert-Lavine/e/B001KDYVOM/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

 

Psychology Today Page https://www.psychologytoday.com/experts/robert-lavine-phd

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

The Trials of Adrian Wheeler by @SteveShearBooks #bookreview #fiction #Military


The Trials of Adrian Wheeler

 

Title: The Trials of Adrian Wheeler

Author: Steve Shear

Genre: Fiction, Military, PTSD

 

Book Blurb:

Marine Private Adrian Wheeler, accused of murdering Iraqi women and children, arrived home to face nothing less than: An unrelenting father who cajoled him into enlisting, PTSD, sexual Inadequacy, a sensational court-martial trial, a sister with HIV. He returned from Baghdad and the Iraq war disabled and disillusioned an amputee with a bad knee. His brother, John Mike, didn’t return at all. Both participated in a reconnaissance mission seeking proof Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, WMDs, a mission that tragically failed, a mission in which innocent women and children died along with John Mike and other combatants. As the sole survivor, Adrian carried the details of that trauma deep within his subconscious, and often drank himself unconscious in hopes of hiding from the visitors who came in his sleep; his domineering father, a retired Vietnam veteran, and Rachael, the girl he left behind. In his mental state and physical condition, he did everything he could to avoid her—and the couch they first made love on before he lost his arm. Just when he began taking control of his life, Adrian was charged with the murder of all those women and children. But did he do it? Could it have been John Mike? Or possibly an insurgent? Adrian’s only hope was to get beyond his trauma and recall the terrible secret buried deep within the cellar of his psyche. That required Rabinowitz (a psychotherapist specializing in PTSD) and Angelo Benedetti (a renowned court-martial defense lawyer) to help him remember—and to convince the court he was innocent—whether he was or not.

 

The Trials of Adrian Wheeler has been optioned as a movie by a production studio in Los Angeles, Filmed Imagination and Daniel Dreifuss (producer of the Academy Award nominated movie, NO), and the screenplay has been completed.

 

My Review:

This is a tough read but one that is worthy of the time put into it.  The author tells a compelling story full of basic issues that resonate far too often in this 21st century world.  The main point is PTSD but the other key issues (oft interrelated with the main) are racism, militarism, love, self respect, dignity and living with disability.

 

I loved the characters of Rachel, Daisy and Esme but had a full on hate for Pa and John Michael.  Adrian is a character a reader must feel for on a deep level.  The story is brilliantly written and tells a story that must be told today more so than before.

 

This book shines a bright light on the crime that the U.S. has been committing for the entire 21st century.  America sends its young people to fight in a war but does nothing to take care of them when they come marching, limping or rolling home.  If you cannot find a way to pay for every single possible after care possibility, from basic health care to full health restoration to mental care to job and career help, then DO NOT send young people to fight.  You cannot deal with battalions of grievously physically and injured soldiers with a ‘we’ll deal with it later’ mentality.  Until America can get proper funding to the VA and proper staffing so that soldiers suffering with PTSD are no longer killing themselves waiting for a treatment session  – then they can no longer send soldiers to fight.

 

A powerful book that is one of the most important books any politician or American family can read.

 

My Rating: 5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Trials-Adrian-Wheeler-Steve-Shear-ebook/dp/B00HTP5LY4

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Trials-Adrian-Wheeler-Steve-Shear-ebook/dp/B00HTP5LY4

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Trials-Adrian-Wheeler-Steve-Shear-ebook/dp/B00HTP5LY4

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21125822-the-trials-of-adrian-wheeler

 

 

Author Biography:

The Trials of Adrian Wheeler was my first published novel (L&L Dreamspell, 2011). It was awarded runner-up in the San Francisco Book Festival 2015.

 

Filmed Imagination of Los Angeles and Daniel Dreifuss (producer of the Academy Award nominated film NO) took a film option on The Trials of Adrian Wheeler. FI hired Erik Wolter, an established screenwriter, to write the screenplay and FI is now looking for partners to produce the movie. Erik and I have collaborated on a sequel to the screenplay, Justice for All.

 

My wife, Susan, and I also collaborated on The State vs. Max Cooper and The Steele Deal (published by ArtAge Publications), courtroom plays in which the audience serves as the jury. Both are being produced around the country. I have found one review of Max Cooper based on its performance at the James Downing Theatre in Chicago (http://www.chicagonow.com/count-gregulas-crypt/2013/05/theater-review-youre-the-jury-the-state-vs-max-cooper-the-james-downing-theatre/).

 

In addition to the Fountain of Youth, I have three novels that have recently been completed: The First Coming, An Eye for an Eye, and The Click. I am presently collaborating with Erik Wolter on a screenplay based on The Click.

 

I have been writing poetry for over fifteen years and am also a portrait and figure artist and sculptor, having been represented by a number of galleries in Denver and Boulder, Colorado. I am presently represented on line by Vango Art.

 

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.steveshear.net/

 

Twitter @Steveshearbooks

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

 

Reconstructing Charlie by @CharJGordon Reads Like a Hallmark Movie! #bookreview #womensfiction


Reconstructing Charlie

 

Title: Reconstructing Charlie

Author: Charmaine Gordon

Genre: Women’s Fiction, Fiction

 

Book Blurb:

Charlie Costigan has a secret. Home life gone from bad to the worst when she protects her mother from another vicious attack by her drunken father. Midnight. Clothes thrown into an old suitcase, she races for the bus with a letter to an unknown aunt and uncle. “This is my daughter. Embrace her as if she were your own.” Determined, Charlie begins again. Alone with her secret.

 

My Review:

Charlie’s been on the run from her abusive father her whole life. In one terrifying moment, Charlie stops running and protects her mother and siblings. Blood on her hands, her mother packs a suitcase and ships Charlie off to an estranged aunt and uncle. “Don’t lose this, Charlie. It’s your passport to a new life.” With a note and suitcase, Charlie walks out on her old life and starts a brand new one.

 

So begins the story of Charlie. Her aunt and uncle are the family she’s never had and they provide everything Charlie needs to turn her life around. A good home, love, affection and opportunities galore. It’s up to Charlie to carve out a life for herself and make her lofty dreams come true. Along the way, she encounters strife, inner turmoil and guilt. She has obstacles to overcome and a past life to bury, but she does it with the support of her new-found family and friends. Spanning over a decade, Charlie grows from an insecure teenager into a confident woman of business.

 

I loved this book! It’s an inspiring story of a young woman torn between her past life and building a new one. It’s a fast-paced novel which reads like your favorite Lifetime/Hallmark Channel movie. My heart broke for Charlie, at how she had to live in such fear around her father and grown up way too fast. I loved how her new family embraced her as their own (especially Edgar and Robert). The men come and go in Charlie’s life but each of them teach Charlie something and that is real life in a nutshell.

 

If you’re looking for an empowering women’s fiction written with emotion, pick up this book today! You won’t regret it.

 

Favorite Character/Quote: Charlie. She could’ve crumbled and lived a terrible life but instead, thanks to a wonderful support system, grew into a beautiful, caring, compassion women. I loved her fiery spirit and determination to make a difference. She’s a role model to young women and women everywhere.

 

My Rating: 4.5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Reconstructing-Charlie-Charmaine-Gordon-ebook/dp/B004KKZ6WS/

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Reconstructing-Charlie-Charmaine-Gordon-ebook/dp/B004KKZ6WS/

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Reconstructing-Charlie-Charmaine-Gordon-ebook/dp/B004KKZ6WS/

 

Smashwords https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/38890?ref=lexcycle

 

iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/lu/book/reconstructing-charlie/id419793348?mt=11

 

Barnes and Noble https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/reconstructing-charlie-charmaine-gordon/1100075654?ean=2940011188084

 

Kobo https://www.kobo.com/ww/en/ebook/reconstructing-charlie

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/10364570-reconstructing-charlie

 

Charmaine Headshot for Author Central

 

Author Biography:

Charmaine Gordon writes books about women who Survive and Thrive. Her motto is take one step and then another to leave your past behind and begin again. Six books and several short stories in three years, she’s always at work on the next story. The books include To Be Continued, Starting Over, Now What?, Reconstructing Charlie, Sin of Omission and The Catch, and her series of Mature Romances, The Beginning…Not the End.

 

“I didn’t realize at the time while working as an actor in NYC, I’d become a sponge soaking up dialogue, setting, and stage directions. I learned many tools of writing during the years watching directors like Mike Nichols and actors including Harrison Ford, Anthony Hopkins, and Billy Crystal. And would you believe, I was Geraldine Ferraro’s stand– in leg model, my first job giving me entrée into all the Unions needed to work. When the sweet time ended, I began another career and creative juices flowed.”

 

You can reach Charmaine at
http://authorCharmaineGordon.wordpress.com

 

And on her FB page http://www.facebook.com/charmaine.gordon

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

Transitory by Ian Williams @iwilliams235 is a Fun #SciFi Adventure with #Mystery! #bookreview


Transitory

 

Title: Transitory

Author: Ian Williams

Genre: Science Fiction

 

Book Blurb:

When Nate Maddox arrives on a strange and distant moon for a long overdue holiday, he is given the opportunity of a lifetime; experience his past memories as physical re-creations.

He is soon amazed to find himself exploring moments of his history thought long forgotten, such as playing in the park as a small boy, or times working for his father aboard his giant asteroid mining ship.

But exciting as that may be for Nate, his visit is going to be anything but relaxing. When a mysterious intruder arrives with murderous intent, Nate is caught well and truly in the middle.

 

My Review:

CEO Nate Maddox is finally taking a vacation, only this time, it’s not relaxation he’s getting but to witness his very own murder. Only it hasn’t happened yet. Is it a warning from a friend or a portent of the future? Nate enlists his alien guide, who’s also a former bodyguard, and his executive assistant to find the killer before it’s too late. But there’s more at stake than just Nate’s life. An alien race in jeopardy, mind-control and power over other races all play a part and if Nate can unravel the truth, he might just escape death.

 

I’m a big fan of science fiction and throw in a good old-fashioned detective mystery, I’m in reader heaven. Williams blends the two genres perfectly and creates a rich world, full of different races and ideals. His world-building wrapped me in a cocoon of escapism which allowed to immerse myself in Nate’s world. Each of the characters were well-developed with plenty of back-story. I do wish there was more back-story on Nate but that’s just because I loved him as a main character. Full of sarcastic wit, Nate kept me turning the pages frantically, trying to figure out the mystery before the big reveal. The ending was satisfactory but left me wanting more.

 

If you’re a science fiction fan and/or looking for an immersive adventure, pick up this book. I look forward to reading more from Ian Williams.

 

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

Favorite Character/Quote: Nate. He’s a wise-crackin’ guy who most everyone can relate to. I loved his one-liners and he’s as authentic as you can get. No pretense to him, he reminds he of Han Solo from Star Wars.

 

My Rating: 4.5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Transitory-Ian-Williams-ebook/dp/B00LACOVU2

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Transitory-Ian-Williams-ebook/dp/B00LACOVU2

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Transitory-Ian-Williams-ebook/dp/B00LACOVU2

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28054876-transitory

 

Author Biography:

Ian Williams is a Science Fiction writer from the UK. His first book, Transitory, was published on Kindle in 2014. After 7 years working for the UK Court Service, Ian began writing as a hobby. When that became his everyday routine, he found himself lost in a world of infinite possibilities, never able to accept just one outcome of many. In the end, he chose to ride the tide of time and allowed the future to be an unknown space, where only the stories he lives can ever alter that timeline.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://starman8243.wixsite.com/iwilliamsauthorpage

Twitter https://twitter.com/iwilliams235

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100009999433711

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

Oh Susannah: It’s in the Bag by Award-Winning @CarolePRoman #kidlit #chapterbooks #bookreview


Oh Susannah

 

Title: Oh Susannah: It’s in the Bag (An Oh Susannah Story Book 1)

Author: Carole P. Roman (Author), Mateya Arkova (Illustrator)

Genre: Children’s Books, Chapter Books, Children’s Fiction

 

Book Blurb:

From award-winning author Carole P. Roman comes a new chapter book featuring Susannah Logan, a young student having a very bad day.

 

It all begins with homework trouble and an invitation to a sleepover that she doesn’t want to go to. Would you want to go to a sleepover in a creepy house? Rather than dealing with her problems, Susannah stuffs them into her backpack. But how much can a backpack take? Will she be able to confront her worries before the backpack bursts? Or will she just continue to hide them away?

 

Join Susannah and her friends in this story sure to charm busy young readers everywhere.

 

My Review:

A great story that gives a superb example.  Everyone can let themselves be overwhelmed.  Susanna’s beautifully described issues illustrate how problems can grow when they are ignored.  In ideal fashion, the family finally came together and all was saved.

 

The message here for every child and parent is never give up, trust in yourself and deal with stuff.

 

Great writing and excellent illustrations.

 

Disclaimer: I received a paperback copy from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Oh-Susannah-Its-Story-Book-ebook/dp/B071XWBB7D/

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Oh-Susannah-Its-Story-Book-ebook/dp/B071XWBB7D/

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Oh-Susannah-Its-Story-Book-ebook/dp/B071XWBB7D/

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34957657-oh-susannah

 

cpr

 

Author Biography:

Named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best of 2012 for her first book, award winning author Carole P. Roman started writing as a dare from one of her sons. Using an imaginary game she played with her grandson as a base, Captain No Beard was born. “Captain No Beard- An Imaginary Tale of a Pirate’s Life” has not only been named to Kirkus Best of 2012, it received the Star of Exceptional Merit, and won the Pinnacle Award for 2012. “Pepper Parrot’s Problem with Patience” Book 2 in the series, received 5 Stars from The ForeWord Review The Clarion Review. Strangers on the High Seas has won second place in the Rebecca’s Reads Choice Awards 2013. It has followed with six more books to the series. This year, Captain No Beard and the Aurora Borealis was named to Kirkus Best 2015. The entire cultural non-fiction series If You Were Me and Lived in… was named Best Series by Shelf Unbound. She has begun work on two new series that will be released in early 2016.

 

Motivated by her love of yoga, Roman has written a book that not only teaches four poses, but shows how easy and accessible yoga can be.

 

 

Her new non-fiction series, “If You Were Me and Lived in…” combines her teaching past with her love of exploration and interest in the world around us. The debut book in the series, “If You Were Me and Lived in…Mexico” has won the Pinnacle Award for Best in Children’s Non Fiction 2012. France, South Korea, and Norway. Rebecca’s Reads has given If You Were Me and Lived in…Norway an honorable mention in the 2013 Choice Awards. If You Were Me and lived in …France won second place. ForeWord Review has nominated If You Were Me and Lived in…France for best in children’s non fiction literature 2013. They will be followed with Kenya, Turkey, India, and Australia. She plans to do Portugal, Greece, and Argentina next year.

 

 

Writing for children has opened up a whole second act for her. While she is still working in her family business, this has enabled her to share her sense of humor as well as love for history and culture with the audience she adores. Roman lives on Long Island with her husband and near her children.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://caroleproman.com/

 

Blog http://caroleproman.blogspot.ca/

 

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/CarolePRomanAwardWinningAuthorAndBooks

 

Twitter https://twitter.com/caroleproman

 

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/caroleproman/

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

 

If You Were Me and Lived In #Cuba by Award-Winning @CarolePRoman #bookreview #kidlit #iartg


IYWM Cuba

 

Title: If You Were Me an Lived in… Cuba: A Child’s Introduction to Cultures Around the World

Author: Carole P. Roman (Author), Kelsea Wierenga (Illustrator)

Genre: Children’s Books, Cuba, Multiculturalism

 

Book Blurb:

Join Carole P. Roman when she visits the exciting island of Cuba in the newest book of her informative series. Learn about the varied customs and cultures. Travel to the Caribbean to discover what you would eat and do for fun. See the country through the eyes of a youngster like you and understand what life is like in this exciting place.

 

Don’t forget to look at the other books in the series so that you can be an armchair world traveler.

 

My Review:

Superb addition to a great series.  Factually accurate, fun and flows well.  Amazing illustrations that bring the story to life.

 

Read with book with your child and you will both be transported into life in Cuba.  A terrific learning tool that is fun and entertaining!

 

Disclaimer: I received a paperback copy from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/You-Were-Lived-Cuba-Introduction-ebook/dp/B07419T4X2/

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/You-Were-Lived-Cuba-Introduction-ebook/dp/B07419T4X2/

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/You-Were-Lived-Cuba-Introduction-ebook/dp/B07419T4X2/

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35709418-if-you-were-me-an-lived-in-cuba

 

cpr

 

Author Biography:

Named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best of 2012 for her first book, award winning author Carole P. Roman started writing as a dare from one of her sons. Using an imaginary game she played with her grandson as a base, Captain No Beard was born. “Captain No Beard- An Imaginary Tale of a Pirate’s Life” has not only been named to Kirkus Best of 2012, it received the Star of Exceptional Merit, and won the Pinnacle Award for 2012. “Pepper Parrot’s Problem with Patience” Book 2 in the series, received 5 Stars from The ForeWord Review The Clarion Review. Strangers on the High Seas has won second place in the Rebecca’s Reads Choice Awards 2013. It has followed with six more books to the series. This year, Captain No Beard and the Aurora Borealis was named to Kirkus Best 2015. The entire cultural non-fiction series If You Were Me and Lived in… was named Best Series by Shelf Unbound. She has begun work on two new series that will be released in early 2016.

 

Motivated by her love of yoga, Roman has written a book that not only teaches four poses, but shows how easy and accessible yoga can be.

 

 

Her new non-fiction series, “If You Were Me and Lived in…” combines her teaching past with her love of exploration and interest in the world around us. The debut book in the series, “If You Were Me and Lived in…Mexico” has won the Pinnacle Award for Best in Children’s Non Fiction 2012. France, South Korea, and Norway. Rebecca’s Reads has given If You Were Me and Lived in…Norway an honorable mention in the 2013 Choice Awards. If You Were Me and lived in …France won second place. ForeWord Review has nominated If You Were Me and Lived in…France for best in children’s non fiction literature 2013. They will be followed with Kenya, Turkey, India, and Australia. She plans to do Portugal, Greece, and Argentina next year.

 

 

Writing for children has opened up a whole second act for her. While she is still working in her family business, this has enabled her to share her sense of humor as well as love for history and culture with the audience she adores. Roman lives on Long Island with her husband and near her children.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://caroleproman.com/

 

Blog http://caroleproman.blogspot.ca/

 

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/CarolePRomanAwardWinningAuthorAndBooks

 

Twitter https://twitter.com/caroleproman

 

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/caroleproman/

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

All the Presidents’ Gardens by @martamcdowell #gardening #history #FridayReads


All the Presidents Gardens

 

Title: All the Presidents’ Gardens: Madison’s Cabbages to Kennedy’s Roses—How the White House Grounds Have Grown with America

Author: Marta McDowell

Genre: History, US History, Horticulture, Gardening

 

Book Blurb:

A New York Times Bestseller and AHS Book Award winner

 

The 18-acres surrounding the White House have been an unwitting witness to history—kings and queens have dined there, bills and treaties have been signed, and presidents have landed and retreated. Throughout it all, the grounds have remained not only beautiful, but also a powerful reflection of American trends. In All the Presidents’ Gardens bestselling author Marta McDowell tells the untold history of the White House Grounds with historical and contemporary photographs, vintage seeds catalogs, and rare glimpses into Presidential pastimes. History buffs will revel in the fascinating tidbits about Lincoln’s goats, Ike’s putting green, Jackie’s iconic roses, and Amy Carter’s tree house. Gardeners will enjoy the information on the plants whose favor has come and gone over the years and the gardeners who have been responsible for it all.

 

All the Pres Garden Page 1

 

My Review:

This book is ostensibly about the White House Garden.  The portions of the book that deal specifically with the White House Garden are brilliant.  There are so many interesting points and asides that come from the creation, maintenance and re-imagining of the White House Garden.  If the book was solely about the White House Greenery then I might have rated it 5 stars.

 

The problems here stem from the admirable attempt of the author to offer context.  The need for context takes the reader far from the singular and for much of the book, this is simply the history of the American Garden.  I was lost in the minutiae of seed creation and trends in American Gardens.

 

The entirety of the book mutes the wonders of a great book on White House Gardens.  Aficionados of gardening in general and people interested in an unique approach to White House history will love this book.  A fun read for the avid gardener in the cold of winter as they wait impatiently for spring to come.

 

My Rating:  3.5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/All-Presidents-Gardens-Madisons-Roses-How-ebook/dp/B01DFY6HCC

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/All-Presidents-Gardens-Madisons-Roses-How-ebook/dp/B01DFY6HCC

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/All-Presidents-Gardens-Madisons-Roses-How-ebook/dp/B01DFY6HCC

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25810724-all-the-presidents-gardens

 

Author Biography:

I live, garden and write in Chatham, New Jersey where I share my garden with my husband, Kirke, assorted wildlife and approximately 10,000 honey bees. You will often find me at the New York Botanical Garden, where I teach landscape history and gardening courses. My new book, All the Presidents’ Gardens, is coming out from Timber Press in October 2016. (I’m excited!) When I’m not gardening I like to read and knit and cook and eat, though not all at the same time.

My husband, Kirke, summarizes my biography as “I am therefore I dig.”

 

Social Media Links:

Website: http://www.martamcdowell.com/

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/martamcdowell

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7444.Marta_McDowell

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

 

TAG: Rapid Fire Books (Mrs. N Talks #books) #bookbloggers #amreading #IARTG #ASMSG


Rapid Fire Book Tag

 

Many thanks to this-is-my-truth-now for posting this tag and encouraging me to give it a chance. Please check out Jay’s blog, for he is a prolific reader/reviewer and a writer, too. He loves books and is so friendly. I highly recommend his blog. This one is the Rapid Fire Book Tag and it was originally created by GirlReading over Youtube, so be sure to stop by and check her out HERE.

 

Question 1: E-Book or Physical Book?

Call me old school, but I still love reading physical books. I read e-books professionally and for pleasure because, well, they’re free or 99 cents. But if I have a choice, I will always choose to read a physical book. There’s something primitive about holding a book in your hands and smelling the paper. Yes, I confess, I’m a total book sniffer.

 

Question 2 : Paperback or Hardback?

Hardback. Why? Honestly, they hold up better. I’ve been known to break book spines through reading a book repeatedly and the paperbacks don’t hold up like they used to.

 

Question 3 : Online or In-Store Book Shopping?

I will always love in-store book shopping better than online shopping. Again, it’s about the experience of browsing for books. It’s not the same browsing online. But with all the book shops closed in our corner of the world, I don’t have the luxury of spending hours in a book store. It’s a shame, really, when you think about it. I keep hoping Amazon will start opening book stores in Canada soon.

 

Question 4 : Trilogies or Series?

I’m a fan of series more so than trilogies. If I like a particular series, I never want it to end. I want it to go on forever, especially if the writing is good.

 

Question 5 : Heroes or Villains?

Call me cute but I love the villain. I love seeing just how badass he/she can be.

 

Question 6 : A book you want everyone to read?

You mean besides Princess of the Light? Lol! Just kidding…

Hmm, I think I everyone should read The Four Loves by C. S. Lewis. It’s a beautiful examination of the four different kinds of love: empathy, friend, romantic, spiritual. I’ve read it several times and each time, I glean new insight.

 

Question 7 : Recommend an underrated book?

Rise of the Prince (Pearseus #1) by Nicholas C. Rossis. A fantasy gem that is ground-breaking and will be a classic twenty years from now.

 

Question 8 : The last book you finished?

Rolf’s Quest by Aubrey Wynne. Review to come tomorrow.

 

Question 9 :The Last Book(s) You Bought?

Physical book – A Harlequin Intrigue book (can’t remember the title)

E-Book –  Resisting Nick: New Zealand friends to lovers sexy reunion romance (Wicked in Wellington Book 3) by Kris Pearson

 

Question 10 : Weirdest Thing You’ve Used as a Bookmark?

A candy bar wrapper, Snickers. Chocolate and reading go hand in hand.

 

Question 11 : Used Books: Yes or No?

Yes! I love used books and have discovered many new-to-me authors through used book stores.

 

Question 12 : Top Three Favorite Genres?

Historical Romance

Romantic Comedy

Romantic Suspense

 

Question 13 : Borrow or Buy?

Always buy. I’ve only ever borrowed physical books from the library.

 

Question 14 : Characters or Plot?

Characters will always drive the plot. For me, the plot can be similar from book to book but the characters are what makes each book unique.

 

Question 15 : Long or Short Books?

I used to love long books but as my free time gets shorter and shorter, I prefer short or shorter books.

 

Question 16 : Long or Short Chapters?

A chapter’s length doesn’t really matter to me. Long, short and in between… all that matters is that they break at the appropriate time. Nothing gets me madder than the chapter ending in the middle of scene.

 

Question 17 : Name The First Three Books You Think Of…

One, Two, Buckle My Shoe by Agatha Christie

Only a Hero Will Do by Alanna Lucas (need to write up a review)

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle (umm, don’t ask – tummy rumbles)

 

Question 18 : Books That Makes You Laugh or Cry?

Laugh – Shopaholic series, anything by D. E. Haggerty, Julie Kent

Cry – The Du Lac Devil by Mary Anne Yarde, The Time Travellers Wife, 18 Reasons

 

Question 19 : Our World or Fictional Worlds?

Fictional Worlds, hands down. Today’s world is so violent and filled with hate so I escape through fiction.

 

Question 20 : Audiobooks: Yes or No?

Not really. I used to do audiobooks when I commuted to work but since I work from home now, I much prefer to read than listen.

 

Question 21 : Do You Ever Judge a Book by its Cover?

You bet! I love book covers and have bought books based on the cover alone. Sometimes it comes back to bite me in the bum but I can’t resist a cover that whets my appetite.

 

Question 22 : Book to Movie or Book to TV Adaptations?

Either one. As a rule, the adaptations are far inferior to reading the book. Inevitably, scenes and characters get cut and it’s a shame.

 

Question 23 : A Movie or TV-Show You Preferred to its Book?

Pride and Prejudice (BBC adaptation with Colin Firth and Jennifer Erle)

 

Question 24 : Series or Standalone?

I much-prefer standalone. I’m a voracious reader and I love entering a new world with each book. Occasionally, I enjoy a series but as a rule, I prefer standalones. I like the trend right now of standalones with returning characters. It’s the blend of the two and I love it.

 

I’m not going to tag anyone but if you feel like it, please take a few moments and answer the questions. Book bloggers, authors, reviewers, c’mon and take part!  I had a blast with it. Of course, as many of you know, I love talking about books and reading. 😊

 

Brilliant! @SurgeonsStory -Inside OR-1 with America’s Top Pediatric Heart Surgeon #bookreview


Surgeon's Story

 

Title: Surgeon’s Story – Inside OR-1 with one of America’s Top Pediatric Heart Surgeons

Author: Mark Oristano with Dr. Kristine Guleserian

Genre: Medicine, Organ Transplant, Memoir

 

Book Blurb:

Kristine Guleserian, pediatric cardiothoracic surgeon, is scrubbed in.

 

Dr. G, as she’s known, is one of only nine women in the U.S. sub-specialty board certified by the American Board of Thoracic Surgeons to what she’s about to do — take a scalpel sharper than a dozen razors, cut through eleven-month old Claudia’s skin, saw open her breastbone and spread her ribcage apart in order to repair congenital defects threatening a malformed heart the size of a walnut.

 

It’s just after 9:00 AM. Claudia will be in the OR until 2:00 PM, along with a team of talented surgeons, nurses, techs, anesthesiologists, perfusionists and others.

 

Dr. G is in charge.

 

What will she find when she opens the chest?

 

How will this tiny little child hold up in surgery?

 

You won’t believe the real-life medical drama in this intense, close-up visit to the cardiac OR.

 

Pick up your copy with just one click.

 

My Review:

In today’s world of medicine, there are some doctors so gifted, so talented, saving the lives of people comes second-nature. Dr. G is such a person and this is her story. Told from the point of view of journalist Mark Oristano as he shadows Dr. Kristine Guleserian, pediatric cardiothoracic surgeon, Surgeon’s Story is a gut-wrenching, emotional and in-depth look at an average day in Dr. G’s OR. From the x-ray room to meeting the parents of one of her infant patients, Oristano reveals it all. The reader gets to secretly scrub in and peek inside the mind of a brilliant surgeon.

 

I loved this memoir and seeing Dr. G in action. It reads quickly and you get a real feel for what an average day in the OR is like. But more than that, you meet her support staff as well as the parents whose child’s life is in Dr. G’s hands. Oristano details without gory details life each procedure, spotlighting Dr. G’s brilliance. There are even a few funny moments that made me chuckle. What’s front and center, though, is the inspiring woman who is Dr. G. She’s proof-positive that women can change the world.

 

If you’re a fan of medical television dramas or looking for an emotional memoir, pick up Surgeon’s Story today. Peek inside an OR and witness medical miracles happening every single day. A must read!

 

Favorite Character/Quote: “We eat stress like M&M’s in here.”

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Surgeons-Story-1-Americas-Pediatric-ebook/dp/B06XRDKMFS

 

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Surgeons-Story-1-Americas-Pediatric-ebook/dp/B06XRDKMFS

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Surgeons-Story-1-Americas-Pediatric-ebook/dp/B06XRDKMFS

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33840433-surgeon-s-story

 

mark Oristano

 

Author Biography:

Dr. Guleserian’s life, training and work are discussed in detail, framed around the incredibly dramatic story of a heart transplant for a two-year old girl whose own heart was rapidly dying.  Author Mark Oristano takes readers inside the operating room to get a first-hand look at pediatric heart surgeries most doctors in America would never attempt.

 

That’s because Dr. Guleserian is recognized as one of the top pediatric heart surgeons in America, one of a very few who have performed a transplant on a one-week old baby. Dr. Guleserian (Goo-liss-AIR-ee-yan) provided her expertise, and opened her life and her OR to Oristano to produce Surgeon’s Story.

 

As preparation to write this stirring book, Oristano spent hours inside the operating room at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas watching Dr. Guleserian perform surgeries that each day were life or death experiences. Readers will be with Dr. Guleserian on her rounds, meeting with parents, and in the Operating Room for heart transplants and more.

 

Oristano is successful sportscaster, photographer, and actor. A graduate of Texas Christian University with a communications degree, Mark worked with famed football broadcaster Verne Lundquist in Dallas, spent a year as a news co-anchor with Oprah Winfrey in Nashville, and then on the Dallas Cowboys Radio Network, Houston Oilers Radio Network, for NFL Films, and then in the Cowboys’ public relations department. Oristano is a frequent public speaker giving talks on the game of football and his stories generated from his career. His first book, A Sportscaster’s Guide to Watching Football, grew out of his work broadcasting NFL games for the Dallas Cowboys and Houston Oilers. He has been a volunteer at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas since 1997.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://surgeonsstory.com/

Mark Oristano Twitter https://twitter.com/SurgeonsStory

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

Arresting Developments (Marshland Justice) by @LenaDiaz #romanticsuspense #bookreview


Arresting Developments

 

Title: Arresting Developments (Marshland Justice)

Author: Lena Diaz

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Contemporary Romance

 

Book Blurb:

A mysterious beauty had nursed him back to health—and attracted the attention of some very bad men… 

 

Somewhere over the Everglades, the airplane’s engine failed and Dex Lassiter plummeted into the swamp’s murky depths. Amber Callahan didn’t expect to find any survivors in the wreckage, but Dex was about as tough as they came. And too smart not to dig into why a woman like her had run away to settle in remote Mystic Glades. Or why a killer circled their every move. As floodwaters rose, deputizing Dex was just what this lawless small town needed. Because escape wasn’t possible. And the only thing Dex did better than starting things was defending them.

 

My Review:

Veteran pilot Dex Lassiter’s plane plunges mysteriously into the Everglades and he miraculously survives. Amber Callahan pulls him out of the swampy water and nurses him back to health.

 

Both are harboring secrets yet unwilling to divulge, wary of each other. When a bad storm floods the roads, Amber and Dex are trapped in Amber’s home with a killer. Surrounded by so-called friends and trusted associates, they try to narrow down suspects. As the body count rises, Amber and Dex need to catch the killer before they become the next victims.

 

A sweltering romantic suspense filled with a myriad of suspects and secrets. Amber and Dex are electric and I loved reading their romance. Both have a jaded past yet want to let down their walls. Mystic Glades and its inhabitants are addictive to reads and I wouldn’t mind living there. I highly recommend and I can’t wait to read more by Lena Diaz.

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Arresting-Developments-Marshland-Justice-Lena-ebook/dp/B011I5T9YS/

Amazon CA https://www.amazon.ca/Arresting-Developments-Marshland-Justice-Lena-ebook/dp/B011I5T9YS/

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Arresting-Developments-Marshland-Justice-Lena-ebook/dp/B011I5T9YS/

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25897383-arresting-developments

 

Author Biography:

Originally from Kentucky, romantic suspense author Lena Diaz also lived in California and Louisiana before settling in northeast Florida with her husband, two children, and a Shetland Sheepdog named Sparky. A former Romance Writers of America Golden Heart® finalist, she won the prestigious Daphne du Maurier award for excellence in mystery and suspense and has been a finalist in the National Excellence in Romance Fiction Awards. She loves to watch action movies, garden, and hike in the beautiful Tennessee Smoky Mountains. You can contact Lena through her website, www.LenaDiaz.com.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.lenadiaz.com/

Twitter https://www.twitter.com/LenaDiaz

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Hold ’Em- A Gambling Hearts Novel by @JacqBiggar #BookReview! #romance #mgtab #RSSOS


JacquieBiggar_HoldEm_800px

 

Title Hold ’Em- A Gambling Hearts Novel (Part of the Luck Of The Draw Box Set)

Author Jacquie Biggar

Genre Contemporary Romance

 

Boxset Blurb

Feeling Lucky? Check out LUCK OF THE DRAW…

 

Luck of the Draw

 

13 lucky stories EXCLUSIVE to this boxset available for a LIMITED time! 13 tales of unimaginable luck – 13 fascinating novellas of love, loss, and mystery. From lotteries to sweepstakes, poker to roulette and horse racing to wishes, these 13 stories will make you wish you’d been the winner!

 

Add it to your TBR Pile: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34609578-luck-of-the-draw

 

Hold ‘Em Blurb

 

In the game of love all bets are off…

 

When professional poker player Matthew Shaughnessy wins the pot of a lifetime, he didn’t expect to land himself a fiancée.

 

Cassandra Gardener is left with little choice but to play the part of a Texan’s fiancée for a week if she wants to clear her father’s gambling debt.

 

Can two people with so much to lose win the biggest bet of all- love?

 

 

My Review

Cassandra Gardener is about to get married in Las Vegas but when her gambler father gambles not only her engagement ring but her as well, she’s furious. But when the winning gambler makes a proposition that will help them both out, she sees no other alternative and reluctantly agrees.

 

 

Matthew Shaughnessy is a professional poker player and just when he thinks Lady Luck has abandoned him, he scores the juiciest pot of all: a beautiful fiancée to bring home to the family ranch. Sure, she’s a fiery princess but it’ll make his ailing grandma proud. The only problem is that the more he’s around Cassandra, the stronger his attraction for her. But she’s engaged and way too good for him. If only his mind, heart and body would agree. If he goes all in, will he secure her love or wind up with a broken heart?

 

OMG! I loved this romance by my favorite author, Jacquie Biggar. Las Vegas and Texas are the backdrop for this novella, which is portrayed accurately (I’ve been to both). The characters, though, are what made this story gleam as bright as the Vegas strip. Both Cassandra and Matthew are complex characters with a strong work ethic. Biggar reveals the conflict in their lives with emotive prose and I found my heart going out to them both. The chemistry between Cassandra and Matthew are electrifying… singe-worthy for sure. I was sad when it ended (though the ending was beautiful) and I want more! Highly recommend, especially if you like contemporary romance.

 

 

Disclaimer: I received an ARC from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

 

My Rating 5+ stars

 

 

Excerpt

Cassandra barely waited until they had left Matt’s family behind for the cool, terracotta comfort of the house before she turned on him.

 

“I am not sleeping with you,” she hissed, all but stamping her foot. Lapis-lazuli eyes snapped like fireflies and her fists clenched at her sides like she wanted to whap him one. Was it wrong that he was turned on?

 

“Relax, princess.” Matt grinned. “What do you take me for? I’m not that kind of guy.”

 

She snorted. “You’re all that type of guy.” Her purse strap had slipped off her shoulder, her cute summer dress was rumpled, and the carefully styled hair she’d started the day with looked as though it had come through a wind storm.

 

He liked it. It made her seem more approachable.

 

Until she spoke.

 

“What is that?” she squealed, ducking behind him and peeking around his shoulder.

 

Matt looked to where she was pointing and laughed outright. “That’s my dog, Chewy.” He bent in time to catch the hairless Chihuahua limp-racing across the tiles, nails click-clicking to a chorus of yapping.

 

Consuela, dressed in a colorful swirly skirt and white peasant blouse with bangles jingling on her outstretched arm hurried around the corner. “Oh, Master Matt, I’m so sorry. He was eating one minute and then he was gone.”

 

Matt tried to control the excited pooch working its way up his chest, tongue hanging weirdly out the side of its mouth and little bug eyes glittering with joy. “It’s okay, Consuela, I was wondering where he was.”

 

“It’s good to have you back, your abuela misses you.”

 

Matt ran a gentle hand over his pet’s bony spine, flattening the narrow black strip of coarse fur that had a mind of its own. “And I missed all of you, but I’m home now, and…” He twisted his torso until Cass came into view, “I brought a fiancée.”

 

Cass gave him an ugly glare, then switched on a warm smile for the housekeeper. “This is my first trip to Texas. You have a beautiful home here, Consuela.”

 

She nodded and stepped forward to take Chewy from his arms. “Thank you, miss. The Shaughnessys are like family.” She patted Matt’s cheek. “This one, he is special.”

 

Warmth for this woman, who had helped his grandma raise a troubled boy, flooded his chest. “If I am, it’s because of you. I can’t thank you enough for taking care of all of us over the years. And now…”

 

“Shh, don’t talk of it, child. We don’t want to invite bad spirits.”

 

Matt smiled through the ache. He couldn’t count the number of times he’d been warned about the spirits. “Yes, ma’am. I’m going to show Cassandra to her room. It’s been a long day.” He hugged Consuela and whispered in her ear. “It’s good to be home.”

 

He stepped back and smiled into her tear-filled eyes. “None of that now. This is meant to be a celebration.”

 

Consuela swiped at her wet cheeks and nodded. “We will make it special. You get married here, on the ranch? Your grandmother, she’s been talking non-stop about it since you called. Wait until you see her plans. It’s been good for her. For all of us.”

 

Matt winced. He couldn’t believe he’d gotten himself into this mess. What started out as a simple way to please his grannie before she passed on had turned into a three ring circus. He glanced at the fuming woman beside him and wondered how long it would be before she blew the lid off this charade.

 

Time to find some privacy and remind her of her obligation.

 

“We’ll discuss the wedding tomorrow.” He tugged Cass under his arm. “My bride-to-be is swaying on her feet.” He got them moving, heading down the hall toward his childhood bedroom. “C’mon, honey. Let’s get you tucked in so you can get your beauty sleep.”

 

She poked him in the ribs and he grunted. Damn, she had bony elbows. As soon as Consuela was out of sight, Cass escaped his hold. Her heaving breasts were a distraction until he realized he was staring, and jerked his gaze to her face.

 

“This has gone too far,” she snapped.

 

Matt opened the door to his room and ushered her through, determined to keep this private. He secretly agreed with her, but they’d already entered into this bargain, he didn’t plan on letting her renege.

 

He closed the door and leaned back to watch Cassandra pace his boyhood room. She avoided the king-sized sleigh bed he’d exchanged for the twin he had until early teens, to check out his trophy collection from swimming and baseball. Then she moved on to the few framed pictures lining his dresser, mainly him and his friends mixed with a couple of him and Gran, out riding horses or herding cattle. She’d always taken an active role in the running of the ranch. Right up until the doctor told her she couldn’t do it anymore three months ago. Funny how life fell into two categories like that. The before filled with days taken for granted, and then the after diagnosis where every moment becomes something to be cherished.

 

“Is this you?” Cassandra asked, holding up a picture of him in a black and white tux, his then girlfriend, Candy, perched on his arm in a bright yellow ball gown.

 

“Prom,” he answered, amazed he’d ever looked that young.

 

She ran a finger down the glass and his body responded as though she’d physically touched him. He cursed under his breath. The last damn thing he needed was to be attracted to a woman who detested the ground he walked on. Never mind the fact she was engaged to be married—and it wasn’t to him.

 

He shoved away from the wall and stalked across the spacious room to his desk where his overnight bag had been left by one of the staff. He unzipped the side compartment and pulled out the distinctive blue box.

 

“Put this on.” He tossed the container at her and had to admit he was impressed with her swift catch.

 

She eyed it warily, then slowly slid the lid off to reveal the midnight blue velvet box within. “Is this what I think it is?”

 

There she went with that finger again, rubbing the box like it was a gene’s lamp. Matt stared. Goosebumps chased up his spine and whispered in his ear that he was in a boatload of trouble. Yeah, he had that part figured out.

 

“You need a ring,” he said, shifting to ease the sudden pressure behind his zipper. “Grannie will expect you to have one. You can keep it when we part ways—consider it a bonus.” God, he could be such a dick sometimes.

 

She sent him a glance that cut to the bone, then carefully pulled the box out of its wrappings and opened the lid as though she thought it might explode in her hand. The flash of surprise she quickly hid tugged at his heart. She liked it.

 

“Where’s my ring?” she asked, sliding the pretty solitaire onto her finger.

 

He was happy to see it fit. “You mean my ring, don’t you?”

 

She snapped the jewelry box closed and he winced.

 

“It’s in a safe place. You live up to your end of the bargain, princess, and I’ll live up to mine.”

 

Cass waved her hand in the air, and the new ring glinted under the lights. “I’m here, aren’t I? Let’s just try to get through this week without killing each other, shall we?” She flopped onto the side of his bed and bounced a couple of times. “Where are you going to sleep?”

 

Matt hid a grin. If this weren’t so serious, and she wasn’t holding all the cards, he’d be hard-pressed not to like this girl.

 

“Well, darlin’, that’s where it gets interesting.”

 

 

Universal Buy Link

http://books2read.com/LuckOfTheDraw

 

Jacquie Biggar

 

Author Biography

JACQUIE BIGGAR  is a USA Today bestselling author of Romantic Suspense who loves to write about tough, alpha males who know what they want, that is until they’re gob-smacked by heroines who are strong, contemporary women willing to show them what they really need is love. She is the author of the popular Wounded Hearts series and has just started a new series in paranormal suspense, Mended Souls.

 

She has been blessed with a long, happy marriage and enjoys writing romance novels that end with happily-ever-afters.

 

Jacquie lives in paradise along the west coast of Canada with her family and loves reading, writing, and flower gardening. She swears she can’t function without coffee, preferably at the beach with her sweetheart. 🙂

 

 

Free reads, excerpts, author news, and contests can be found on her website:

http://jacqbiggar.com

 

You can follow her on at http://Facebook.com/jacqbiggar , http://Twitter.com/jacqbiggar

 

Or email her via her website. Jacquie lives on Vancouver Island with her husband and loves to hear from readers all over the world!

 

You can also join her street team on Facebook: Biggar’s Book Buddies

 

Or her exclusive Review Crew: https://jacqbiggar.com/join-my-review-crew/

 

And sign up for her newsletter-

https://app.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/h6c2n8

The Fragrance Shed By A Violet by @LinWilder #bookreview #medicalmystery #TuesdayBookBlog


Fragrance Shed by a Violet

 

Title: The Fragrance Shed By A Violet: Murder in the Medical Center 2nd edition

Author: Lin Wilder

Genre: Medical Mystery

 

Book Blurb:

Why did a Houston district attorney decide to involve the state in an area of the law that it has historically treated as sacrosanct: that of medical decision-making? Why did the DA decide to charge McCall with murder rather than criminal negligence in a civil court? Author Lin Weeks Wilder continues Dr. Lindsey McCall’s story in the new book, “The Fragrance Shed By A Violet Cover: Murder in The Medical Center”.

In a city where the Texas Medical Center reigns as one of the top employers in Houston, housing over three thousand medical researchers making the news with new pharmaceutical discoveries almost daily, why did twelve Houstonians unanimously decide to convict Dr. McCall for intentional murder following her trial?”

These are the questions that lead investigative reporter Kate Townsend to write a Pulitzer Prize winning series called Murder in the Texas Medical Center. Haunted by the knowledge that her new-found fame has been purchased at too high a price; Kate is sure that McCall is not guilty.

Texas Governor Greg Bell hires former homicide detective and criminal defense attorney Rich Jansen to fix the escalating problems at the Huntsville Prisons recently inflamed by a lawsuit against infamous inmate Dr. Lindsey McCall. Dr. McCall is an internationally acclaimed cardiologist, researcher, and a 2002 nominee for the Nobel Prize for Medicine. When Jansen’s skills quickly result in the resignation of an incompetent prison medical director, he realizes that this strange saga is just beginning.

Mark Twain wrote that forgiveness was the fragrance shed by a violet upon the heel of the boot that has crushed it. This medical mystery weaves together the lives of two sisters, Lindsey, and Paula, with those of strangers as each cope with loss, betrayal, jealousy, and the exquisitely painful journey to forgiveness.

 

My Review:

I’m a recent fan of medical mysteries, even though it’s been a popular genre for years. In The Fragrance Shed by a Violet, Lin Wilder takes us deep inside medical research and one doctor’s actions that reverberates throughout the community. Dr. Lindsay McCall is tried and convicted for intentional murder. As she sits in jail, guilt and shame her companions in the cell, investigative reporter Kate Townsend is confident Dr. McCall didn’t do it. She investigates and what she uncovers, shakes the medical industry to the core. Can she free Dr. McCall or will greater forces keep her quiet?

 

But there’s a deeper storyline here, one that surprised me. Forgiveness. Do we have the capacity to forgive ourselves as we forgive others? Whether it’s admitting a costly error in judgement or betraying a loved one, forgiveness is one of life’s ultimate challenges. Dr. McCall must forgive herself but at what cost?

 

This is more than a simple medical mystery. I’d also include courtroom drama as well as investigative thriller to the genre. Filled with subtle sub-plots and twists I wasn’t expecting, The Fragrance Shed by a Violet is one of the best books I’ve read this year. I loved Dr. McCall as a main character for many reasons but one that sticks out is authentic. Every emotion she experiences, the reader does as well, and that makes for a gripping story. Wilder is a gifted writer, whose knowledge of the medical industry is apparent from the first page. Intricately-woven, she takes the reader deep into the characters and circumstances so the reader is left wondering what he/she would do if that happened to them.

 

If I had to sum my feelings in four words, I’d say this book is gripping, honest and unexpectedly touching. Highly recommend!

 

Favorite Character/Quote:

“She almost laughed out loud in the dark at herself—at least the terror of this dream was familiar and lay buried in her past; her real nightmare was no dream, no mere memory. And she could feel the fear uncoil, stretch, and begin to take her over once again. Closing her eyes, she began to pray:

 

Let nothing dismay thee.

All things pass.

God never changes.

Patience acquires all that is strived for.

She who has God finds that she lacks nothing.

God alone suffices.”

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Fragrance-Shed-Violet-Murder-Medical/dp/1942545177/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1477058516&sr=8-3&keywords=lin+wilder

 

Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-fragrance-shed-by-a-violet-lin-wilder/1122746192?ean=9781942545170

 

Google Play https://books.google.com/books?id=XCnGCgAAQBAJ&pg=PP4&lpg=PP4&dq=lin+wilder+books&source=bl&ots=47iaR5C0Ng&sig=TOk3ay_grsz5gbk3_Y_Uc5EpjYU&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiTltayiOzPAhXIy1QKHU15CIM4FBDoAQgwMAA

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27181645-the-fragrance-shed-by-a-violet

 

Lin Wilder

 

Author Biography:

Lin Weeks Wilder has published dozens of articles, wrote a textbook, and has written four self-help books. Lin has written three medical thrillers situated in Houston, Texas where Lin worked for over 23 years—The Fragrance Shed by a Violet, the sequel Do You Solemnly Swear? and the third in her series, A Price for Genius. The story of the return to faith, Finding the Narrow Road was an unplanned surprise.

 

In her free time, Lin Wilder enjoys hiking, listening to beautiful music, gardening and last but certainly not least, reading. Lin is married to a former Marine and psychologist with 25 years of experience counseling ex- combat veterans. They reside in Nevada with their two dogs.

 

Social Media Links:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/lincwilder

Twitter https://twitter.com/LinWilder

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7944373.Lin_Wilder

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/linwilder

About Me https://about.me/lin.wilder

Amazon Author Page http://www.amazon.com/Dr.-Lin-Wilder/e/B007L380OM

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

“Intoxicating and Swoon-Worthy” The Highlander’s English Woman by @RuthACasie #romance


thehighlandersenglishwoman300-1

 

Title: The Highlander’s English Woman

Author: Ruth A. Casie

Genre: Historical Fantasy Romance

 

Book Blurb:

Laura Reynolds is in love with her long-time friend, Jamie Maxwell Collins. She adores his playful sense of humor, caring nature as well as his strong sense of family and honor.

Jamie lives across the border in Scotland. Outwardly carefree, he hides a dark secret. He can’t involve Laura in this deception. He can’t give her hope for a future together.

Laura stumbles upon Jamie’s secret. In her heart of hearts she knows Jamie is innocent. Their relationship in tatters and with no hope of reconciliation, she plays a deadly game to exonerate Jamie, she agrees to a political marriage. She has no idea the entire game has been orchestrated by her future husband, Jamie’s greatest enemy.

 

My Review:

Betrayal. Deception. Love. Power. Something is amiss and The Maxwell calls on his most trusted warrior, Jamie Maxwell Collins, to root out the perpetrators before The Maxwell Ghost strikes again.

 

In the continuation of the short story, The Maxwell Ghost, Ruth A. Casie tells the complete story of Laura, Jamie and the ghost(s) haunting the castle of The Maxwell. If you read The Maxwell Ghost, you’ll be familiar with the first part of this book. But please don’t skip the first half of the story. Casie adds intricate detail to the original story and trust me, it’s worth a re-read. It’ll suck you into Laura’s and Jamie’s romance as well as what else is happening.

 

Back to the story…

 

Laura agrees to accompany Jamie, on her mother’s behalf, to help the restless spirits before their time is up. She, like her mother and sister, have certain “gifts” and she knows she can right the wrong. But all is not as it appears to be and it may be Laura the hidden villain is after, not The Maxwell.

 

Jamie knows he must end things with Laura because his enemy is vicious and would think nothing of torturing Jamie through Laura. So, he makes a clean break and shatters Laura’s heart, although his pain is much worse than hers. He goes undercover to uncover the plot against The Maxwell and even goes so far as to “pretend” to be in love with one of women associated with the plot to overthrow The Maxwell.

 

Laura, in an effort to get over Jamie, befriends an old friend who falls in love with her. He proposes marriage and seeing no other choice, aligns herself into a political marriage. Laura is playing a deadly game and all those she loves may pay the consequences. Can Jamie save her or is all lost?

 

I loved this historical romance and while it was written years after The Guardian’s Witch, this prequel’s continuity is exceptional. Casie blends the supernatural with historically accurate romance with precision and flair. The plot has several twists and surprises (I won’t reveal any here) which I wasn’t expecting. The monk scene is priceless!

 

If you’re a fan of historical medieval romance set in both Scotland and England with dashes of the supernatural, pick up this book right now! It’s a gem and I highly recommend it! Can’t wait for the next installment in the Stelton Legacy by Ruth A. Casie!

 

This is a standalone, as is The Guardian’s Witch, but I recommend you read this first.

 

Favorite Character: Laura. Strong, independent and full of passion, Laura knows what she wants and goes after it. She’s in love with her childhood friend, Jamie, and when he pushes her away for another woman, her pain is acute.

 

Favorite Quote:

He kissed her fingertips. “I thought I lost you forever.”

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon/Kindle: https://amzn.com/B01LXYHNGS

 

Amazon Print: http://a.co/am0MfIq

 

iBook: http://apple.co/2eddatE

 

BN: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-highlanders-english-woman-ruth-a-casie/1125365584?ean=2940157490539

 

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-highlander-s-english-woman

 

Ruth A Casie close

 

Author Biography:

RUTH A. CASIE is a USA Today bestselling author of swashbuckling action-adventure time-travel romance about strong empowered women and the men who deserve them, endearing flaws and all. Her Druid Knight novels have both finaled in the NJRW Golden Leaf contest. The Guardian’s Witch, part of the Stelton Legacy series was a Reader’s Crown Finalist. Ruth also writes contemporary romance in the Havenport series with enough action to keep you turning pages. Ruth lives in New Jersey with her husband, three empty bedrooms and a growing number of incomplete counted cross-stitch projects. Before she started writing time travel romance, she was a speech therapist, international bank product and marketing manager, but her favorite job is the one she’s doing now—writing time travel romance. For more information, please visit www.RuthACasie.com or visit her on Facebook, @RuthACasie, Twitter, @RuthACasie, or Pinterest RuthACasie.

 

Social Media Links:

Website: http:// www.ruthacasie.com

 

Personal Blog:  http://www.ruthacasie.blogspot.com

 

Google+ https://plus.google.com/+RuthSeitelman

 

Twitter:  http://www.twitter.com/RuthACasie

 

FB Author Page: http://www.facebook.com/RuthACasie

 

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/ruth-seitelman/6/6b7/964

 

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/ruthacasie/

 

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4792909.Ruth_A_Casie

 

Reviewed by: Mrs N

Paper Love by @Aubreywynne51 is a Delightful Sweet #Romance! #bookreview


paper-love

 

Title: Paper Love (A Chicago Christmas Book 2)

Author: Aubrey Wynne

Genre: Holiday Fiction, Holiday Romance

 

Book Blurb:

Growing up in a Papua New Guinea mission, Joss Palmateer is a gentle soul with a unique view of life. Still adjusting to a new home in the U.S and the sudden loss of her mother, love is the last thing on her mind.

 

Sexy physical therapist, Ben Montgomery, meets his sister’s friend and the sparks fly. He takes it as a challenge when she ignores his advances, but it’s her extraordinary inner beauty that captures his heart.

 

With the help of a stray homing pigeon and an old origami legend, Ben sets an unwavering course of romance to win her love.

 

My Review:

Still grieving the loss of her mother, Joss Palmateer has no interest in going out and meeting people but her best friend, Becky, keeps asking her to come to Ben’s (Becky’s brother) Friday Single Parties. Joss mentions it on a whim before dinner to her sister (who wants to go) so they decide to attend. Once at the party, shy Joss meets Ben and the attraction is immediate. He asks her out but she politely says no. She’s still getting over the betrayal of her ex-boyfriend.

 

 

Ben Montgomery takes one look into Joss’ chocolate brown eyes and is smitten. Her no is a challenge for him and he does everything he can to win her heart, thanks to the help of a lost pigeon named Charlie. He’s charming, outgoing and it’s not until he shows an insecure part of himself that Joss lets down the walls protecting her heart.

 

 

A sweet romance from Aubrey Wynne and just what I needed after a hard week. From the moment I read the first sentence, I had warm-fuzzy thoughts fill me. See, I’m a total romantic and Paper Love is one of those feel-good romances that makes the world fade away. I loved the banter between Joss and Ben, Ben and Becky, not to mention between Ben and Charlie the Pigeon. While this is short story, the main characters were fully developed.

 

It was refreshing to read a romance where there wasn’t any billionaires, serious angst and so forth. This is just a sweet romance, taking place during the holiday season, with real people (like you and me) trying to figure out what they want out of life and falling in love. Brilliant! I swooned at Ben’s romantic side. I cried a little at Joss’ grief and struggling to move on past her mother’s death. The ending moved me so much I had to text my husband and tell him I love him.

 

1-click this book right now (and the whole series). You’re in for a treat!

 

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author (via Netgalley) in the hopes I’d review it.

 

 

Favorite Character: It was hard to choose between Joss and Ben, as I loved them both, but I could relate with Joss more than Ben. Her caution when it comes to love and men in general made total sense, given her previous boyfriend (jerk that he is). I found myself nodding my head in agreement with her, most of the time, and the urge to hug her at certain moments in the book was overwhelming.

 

Favorite Quote: “Twinkle, twinkle, little star, how I wonder what you are…”

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Paper-Love-Chicago-Christmas-Book-ebook/dp/B01M9CCE5O/

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31821220-paper-love

 

Aubrey Wynne

 

Author Biography:

Bestselling and award-winning author Aubrey Wynne resides in the Midwest with her husband, dogs, horses, mule and barn cats. She is an elementary teacher by trade, champion of children and animals by conscience, and author by night. Obsessions include history, travel, trailriding and all things Christmas. Her short stories, Merry Christmas, Henry and Pete’s Mighty Purty Privies have won Readers Choice Awards and Dante’s Gift received the 2016 Golden Quill, Aspen Gold, and Heart of Excellence award, as well as being a Maggie and Aspen Gold finalist. Besides her Chicago Christmas novellas, Aubrey will release “A Vintage Romance” series inspired by tales of her stepfather, who served for the British Air Force in WWII. The stories will be set in the 40s & 50s. Her medieval fantasy series will launch in 2017 with Rolf’s Quest.

 

Social Media Links:

Website https://aubreywynneauthor.com/

Blog https://aubreywynneauthor.com/blog/

Twitter https://twitter.com/Aubreywynne51

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

The Power of Love and Murder by @brendawhitesid2 #bookreview #TWRP


thepowerofloveandmurder

 

Title: The Power of Love and Murder (The Love and Murder Series Book 4)

Author: Brenda Whiteside

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Suspense

 

Book Blurb:

For thirteen years, Penny Sparks has managed to hide from the political powers who murdered her family. When she unwittingly exposes her true identity, not only is she marked for death, but the people closest to her risk meeting the same fate.

 

Jake Winters is out of rehab and coming to grips with his demons. When he meets his sister’s roommate, Jake believes Penny might be that someone who can help him find life after rock star status…until her secrets blow up his world.

 

With a government agent turned hit man closing in on her, Penny and Jake race to expose the presidential contender behind the murders of her family. Even if they win the race with death, the murder that stands between them could end their hope for a new life.

 

My Review:

Imagine you’re on your way home from high school when your brother sends you a text warning you to not go home. In a flash, you realize your family is in danger and not even the police can help. You flee, change your name to Penny and start a new life in a small town in the desert. Now imagine, missing your extended family so bad you contact your aunt using your roommate’s computer. What harm could it do?

 

Penny’s about to find out just how badly one man wants her dead. He’s already killed every member of her family; she’s the last surviving link. He’s got his eye on the White House and nothing, not even an innocent email, will stand in the way of him being President.

 

Jake is a washed-up rocker, fresh out of rehab, and in need of a place to stay. He crashes at his sister’s and meets the secretive Penny. He’s attracted to her but knows that he’s not in a good place to start a relationship. Sparks fly and he finally gives into his feelings. But all that goes up in flames when tragedy hits.

 

A rogue government agent/hitman tracks down Penny and soon both she and Jake are on the run. Can they outrun him long enough to expose the truth about Penny’s family murderer or will they lose this game of cat and mouse?

 

This was my first book by Brenda Whiteside and I must admit, I enjoyed it. Whiteside pours on the suspense with just enough romance thrown in to allow me to catch my breath. It started out fast, slowed down and then sped up at the end. While there were parts near the end that I felt dragged a bit, I thoroughly enjoyed reading, The Power of Love and Murder. Jake and Penny are well-developed and no insta-love here. Both had to deal with their own demons, sometimes alone and sometimes together, which I found realistic. Jake’s reactions to Penny’s secrets were honest and even at times, humorous.

 

If you’re a fan of romantic suspense, this is a must read. If you’re a fan of suspense and/or political thrillers, you’ll love it! I look forward to reading more from Brenda Whiteside.

 

Favorite Character: Jake. At the beginning, I wasn’t sure what to make of him. Was he going to be the bad guy or hero? I loved his personal growth and how he dealt with all that Penny threw at him. They’re a real couple, both filled with insecurities and demons chasing them, yet when push comes to shove, Jake is determined to show Penny he’s the man for her and nothing can keep them apart, not even murder.

 

Favorite Quote: “Penny, I know how much she meant to you.” How much she meant to both of them. He wanted to hold her, share their loss. “I’m not leaving you.”

 

My Rating:  4.5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Power-Love-Murder-Book-ebook/dp/B01M3YVO4H/

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32884499-the-power-of-love-and-murder

 

brenda-whiteside

Author Biography:

Convinced she was born to be an artist, Brenda never took her love of writing seriously. And then one day, sometime after college, after marrying a man doing a stint in the army, and after the birth of her son, she found more satisfaction filling a blank page with words than an empty canvas with color.

 

Brenda and her husband are gypsies at heart having lived in six states and two countries. Currently, they split their time between the prairie in Northern Arizona and the RV life. At home or in the RV, she spends most of her time writing stories of discovery and love entangled with suspense.

 

Social Media Links:

Visit Brenda at www.brendawhiteside.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/BrendaWhitesideAuthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/brendawhitesid2

She blogs on the 9th and 24th of every month at http://rosesofprose.blogspot.com

She blogs about prairie life on her personal blog http://brendawhiteside.blogspot.com/

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

New Megiddo Rising: An ‘Apostates’ Novella by @lars_teeney #bookreview #TuesdayBookBlog


new-megiddo-rising

 

Title: New Megiddo Rising: An ‘Apostates’ Novella

Author: Lars Teeney

Genre: Dystopian, Science Fiction

 

Book Blurb:

At the Dawn of the Texas Republic declaring independence from Mexico, New Megiddo was born. Created by a death cult led by the Reverend Brigham Wainwright, who actively worked to flood the empty, barren land with his American followers; undermining his Mexican overlords.

 

Fast-forward several centuries and America has become New Megiddo, a theocracy run by the Schrubb Administration, where order is kept using the technology of the [Virtue-Net] to feed the Reverend Wilhelm Wainwright’s sermons to the minds of the people. In the slums, the humble beginnings of an insurgency of Apostates take shape. The cruel and clueless policies of the Church of New Megiddo and the ruling Regime push the disenfranchised masses one step closer to all-out rebellion.

 

My Review:

This is a book for someone who wants to be transported to a different world…that all the while eerily reminds the reader of current day.  The ‘America’ in this book is craftily created by the author to set the stage for the multifaceted society that exists.  Several of the characters are intriguing and a reader can be caught up in those characters quickly which shows a skill that is hard to find in many of the books today.  The promise that comes from this prequel novella whets the appetite of the reader and leaves one wanting to read the next part of the story.

 

For me, the necessary detailing of the ruling society drags on and on.  I quickly developed a detestation for the scum who run the ‘church’ society.  I was offended by the leader of the girl’s home who preys on the children he is supposed to be molding.  That pervert needs a good axe in the head.

 

I was bothered by the detail of Ayane being bullied and brutalized by her ‘school mates’ but then, instead of detail of her murdering the ringleader, it was a fade to black and return.  I would prefer less bullying detail and more detail of the bully being brutally murdered.  That is just me.  I absolutely loved the rebels attack on the deacon caravan in LA.  That was the best writing I saw in the novella and re-read it several times.  That alone makes me want to read book two.

 

My Rating:  4 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/New-Megiddo-Rising-Apostates-Novella-ebook/dp/B015DS2FN8

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26532358-new-megiddo-rising

 

lars-teeney

 

Author Biography:

Lars Teeney was born in Montana. After going to an art school in San Francisco, racking up insane student loans and working for years as a freelance designer for the start-up culture, he became burnt out. He abandoned the Bay Area for the Pacific North-west, where he could hike and bike to my heart’s content. He has worked for a variety of technology companies and has a keen passion for politics, history, science and art.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://larsteeney.tumblr.com/

Twitter @lars_teeney

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/larsteeney/

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

Meet @DianeMoatAuthor and her New Release #FridayReads #books #fantasy


As many of you know, we love meeting new authors and introducing you to their books. It gives us great pleasure to introduce you to Diane Moat. She writes young adult fantasy with dashes of romance. Not only is she a talented storyteller but she loves bacon. She’s aces in our eyes and we hope you enjoy getting to know her better. Take it away, Diane: 

 

Do you have any odd writing habits?

I have four Chihuahuas, and one of them must be on my lap or next to me when I am writing. If none of them are around I have been known to go find one and put it on my lap! Somehow it helps me focus.

 

How important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning?

Names are very important, but I don’t usually know them in the beginning. As I write and get a picture of the character, the name comes along also.

 

Have you always liked to write?

Surprisingly, no. I only started writing a year ago, as a lark. Within a week I was hooked.

 

What writing advice do you have for other aspiring authors?

If you love writing, write. Then write some more. Do it because you love it.

 

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 every review and try to respond to them all. The bad reviews don’t bother me and I appreciate whenever someone takes the time to give feedback. The harder thing for me is when someone gives the book a bad review/score and they haven’t read it. One person didn’t like the topic so gave me a one star review just from that. Those I still struggle with.

 

Is this your first book? How many books have you written prior (if any?)

This is my second book. I wrote Dog Gone earlier this year. It is a novel about an animal rescuer turned vigilante toward animal abusers.

 

What are you working on now? What is your next project?

At the end of my current novel, Guardian of the Way, Cass had many adventures ahead of her. She has started down that path and I should have the second book out in the Spring of 2017.

 

Do you drink? Smoke? What’s your vice?

Bacon. I admire folks who are vegetarians, but put bacon near me and I will eat it!

 

What do you want your tombstone to say?

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.

 

If you had a superpower, what would it be?

Finding lost pets. It breaks my heart to see a lost pet sign and I would reunite every single one if I could.

 

Where is one place you want to visit that you haven’t been before?

Ireland. It’s where my ancestors are from. I would love to go on a tour of different castles.

 

What do you dream? Do you have any recurring dreams/nightmares?

Three or four times a year I dream there is some emergency and my phone won’t work. It either won’t connect or the person on the other end can’t hear me. I haven’t figured that one out yet.

 

 guardian-of-the-way-cover-jpeg

 

Title: Guardian of the Way

Author: Diane Moat

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance

 

Tagline:

When eighteen-year-old Cass discovers that she’s part fae, a battle begins among supernatural  creatures to appoint her the new Guardian who’ll open up the Way between the worlds.

 

Book Blurb:

It’s been two centuries since someone murdered the last Guardian of the Way, closing off this world from the many realms of magic and fae.

 

Cassiopeia “Cass” Wilson is an eighteen-year-old living on her own for the first time. The only magic she’s interested in is the kind that will help her pay the bills on time. Little does she know that a trip to the hospital after a fainting spell will change her life forever.

 

Cass soon learns she may be fae, and everything points to her being the next Guardian of the Way. There’s just one problem: whoever—or whatever—killed the last Guardian wants Cass dead too.

 

Cass quickly runs into problems, and an attack by djinn is just the first. But Cass joins forces with a wrath daemon, were-creatures, and fae on a quest to reach the Lighthouse—the site of the Way.

 

Cass soon learns about wizards desperate to keep the Way closed to serve their dark purposes, and she comes to a crossroads: will she take the test to become the new Guardian and leave her normal life behind? Or will the Way remain closed to all who need it?

 

Hear what readers are saying about Guardian of the Way:

“Cass Wilson takes us right along with her in this journey, revealing a world she never knew existed, with a diverse new tribe of companions, protectors, and friends. A must read for anyone who wonders what else is out there beyond what we can see.” by C.S.

 

“A strong story, full of surprises. Getting there is half the fun, but is she meant for this challenging job between many worlds? Quite worth a read.” by M. Hayden

 

Excerpt:

A massive lighthouse sits off the coast of Maine near the town of Cutler. The building has stood empty for over two-hundred years. Those who can make out the edifice view a tower of stone and paned glass unlike any other lighthouse they have ever seen. The specific dimensions are hard to determine as this structure, unlike most lighthouses, is not a single tower. Instead, it has a broader base than usual, with what appear to be turrets at the top. The construction may even consist of two buildings connected at the middle. But not many people question this odd lighthouse, or even wonder why it remains vacant. 

 

This is because most Humans can’t actually see the Lighthouse. A few who have a drop of Fey, Were or “Other” blood may perceive an ordinary lighthouse. And some instinct guides these souls to avoid the building, though they wouldn’t be able to voice why if they were asked. True Fey, Were, Vampires, and other supernatural beings can certainly identify the building known to them as the Lighthouse, but none of them dare try to enter. Those genuine descendants know the Way is blocked, and has been for the two-hundred years the Lighthouse has stood dark. 

 

The place has sat empty since the most recent Lighthouse Guardian died one horrible night at the pinnacle. The Guardian had only been Guardian for four-hundred years and was killed well before his time. Inside the Lighthouse lies the only permanent causeway (the “Way”) between the worlds of magic and the world of the mundane. Fey, Were, Vampires and other non-Humans, despite the barrier to journeying across from inside the Lighthouse, could still travel between these two worlds using costly magic spells—but such a trip is difficult and dangerous. The entrance to the Way closed at the time of the Guardian’s death, and neither magic nor mundane had been able to open it since.

 

On one late evening in particular, a large man sat under a tree just outside of Cutler, eating the stew his mate had made earlier and placed in a storage dish. The season was early fall, but already the nights had a bite to them. The man was on his third shift of watch duty in a row. He had pulled this job ten months previously and was glad the rotations were only a year long. He would be back home in Louisiana before the truly bitter winter was well underway.

 

The man was suddenly blinded by a light coming from the very top of the Lighthouse. The man’s reflexes were frighteningly quick, but even so he dropped his stew. Flabbergasted, he stared directly at the light for a full twenty seconds, until he no longer cared about the meal. He turned away from the brightness, and shedding his clothes, he found his legs shortening and his arms lengthening. In less than a minute, a large dark-grey Wolf shook himself once, then again. Glancing back for a final look at the Lighthouse, the Wolf began running toward the town. 

 

He wouldn’t stop running until he was at his pack leader’s house. From there, word would spread like a virus. Everything was different now. For somewhere in this ordinary domain, two minutes before, a brand-new Guardian had been born. 

 

Buy Links:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Guardian-Way-Diane-Moat-ebook/dp/B01MFD7KNC

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32795260-guardian-of-the-way?from_search=true

 

 diane-moat

 

Author Biography:

When not creating fantastical worlds of young adult fiction, Diane Moat spends her time in Tennessee as an animal rescuer and nurse. Her various rescue dogs often assist her in the creative process.

 

Social Media Links:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/DianeMoatAuthor/

Website http://www.dianemoatauthor.com/

Twitter @DianeMoatAuthor

 

 

 

N. N. Light’s Collection of Book Reviews A – Z! #bookreview #books #TuesdayBookBlog


a-to-z-book-reviews

 

A- Angels Everywhere by Debbie Macomber. This is actually two full novels in one.  The first story is called A Season of Angels.  It is the story of three angels named Shirley, Goodness and Mercy and their inspiring assignments.  Gabriel is short-staffed and has appointed Shirley, Goodness and Mercy to help three people in time for Christmas.  A funny yet touching story about three people trying to find what they desire most, with the help of some wacky angels! A great read and perfect for Christmastime.  The second story is called Touched by Angels.  The same 3 angels are sent down to New York City to help 3 people discover what a miracle really is.  Honestly, I preferred the first story to the second but both are excellent together!

B- Bloodline by Fiona Mountain. This book is an amazing mystery filled with twists and turns that you didn’t see coming.  The main character is Natasha Blake and she is a genealogist by trade.  She uncovers people’s ancestors and her latest client is quite mysterious.  He wants a family tree done on his granddaughter’s boyfriend.  What she uncovers leads to his mysterious death and Natasha must help the police find the true killer before the killer finds her.  A true British mystery and a must-read!

C- Confessions of a French Baker: Breadmaking Secrets, Tips & Recipes by Peter Mayle and Gerard Auzet. From the author who wrote “A Year in Provence” comes a small yet impactful book detailing the secrets of French bakers.  Gerard Auzet is a friend of Peter’s who has been making bread since he was a boy.  In fact, his family has been making bread in the countryside of Provence for several generations.  This book is a must-read for all bakers and for anyone who has enjoyed the sheer pleasure of authentic French bread and baguettes.

D- D-Day June 6, 1944: The Climatic Battle of World War II by Stephen E. Ambrose.  Beyond debate this is THE book on D-Day.  There never needs to be another one written.  Ambrose wrote this definitive history in 1994.  He painstakingly takes the reader from the who and what was involved, how it was planned, set up, the complete story of every aspect of the greatest invasion in history.  You get the real feel for what happened and what sacrifices the greatest generation made to keep our world safe and free.  At least in the 20th century.  Safe and free are relative terms these days.  A must read for those who do not fully understand what D-Day was and a must re-read.  A book that needs to be kept close on your shelf of favourite books.

E- Eating Pomegranates: A Memoir of Mothers, Daughters and the Breast Cancer Gene by Sarah Gabriel.  A heart-wrenching memoir detailing her experience with breast cancer (first with her mother and then with her own).  A funny-at-times-yet tragic account of what it feels like to deal with breast cancer.  I think every woman in the world needs to read this book.

F- The Floating Admiral by The Detection Club (including Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers and G. K. Chesterton). In 1931 a group of 12 mystery writers including Agatha Christie came together and published this book.  They called themselves The Detection Club and each of them was responsible for writing a chapter and also the conclusion in a sealed envelope.  It was a hit in the 30’s and they re-released it 80 years later.  I love Agatha Christie and thought this would be a brilliant book.  Boy was I disappointed!  It was disjointed, not very well written and the characters aren’t very believable.  I would NOT recommend it!!!

G- Garlic and Sapphires: The Secret Life of a Critic in Disguise by Ruth Reichl.  A fun and insightful book on the hidden life of a food critic.  Ruth Reichl shares with us in honest prose her experience moving from Los Angeles to New York and how she turned the food critic world upside down.  A must read for any foodie and a brilliant read for anyone who wants an inside glimpse into the New York Restaurant scene.

H- Heavy Losses – The Dangerous Decline of American Defense by James Coates and Michael Killian originally written 1985. This book grips a reader whether read the first time or the fourth.  It is troubling how the issues of prolific over spending by the Pentagon on weapon systems that don’t work well enough to justify their costs continues 26 years after the book’s writing.  You would think it was today that the book was talking about with planes costing thousands of times more than originally priced (think about the relatively useless F-22) or the “widow maker” the Osprey that now flies but killed so many in becoming that plane.  America spends over a quarter of its total budget on defense but so much of that money simply lines the pockets of the weapon companies and doesn’t make America any safer only worse in shape economically.  Something must change or indeed as the book prophesied in 1985…America will one day spend 300 Billion to buy one plane and there will be no money for anything else.  Something has to change.  Read this book and shiver.

I- I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou. I first read this book in high school and it changed my life. I was a shy girl and didn’t have very much self-confidence. Maya Angelou allowed me to see myself in her prose and I embraced Phenomenal Woman as my mantra.

Maya holds nothing back and if you have never read anything by her, I suggest you start with this book. You get to know who Maya is and how she overcame such adversity. Nothing could keep her down and this book will inspire you to persevere.

J- Jamie Confidential by Stafford Hildred/Tim Ewbank. This is the biography of Britain chef Jamie Oliver. I first encountered Jamie Oliver with his television program Oliver’s Twist and it was love at first bite. His approach to cooking, like his life, is simple and down to earth. This biography starts at his childhood and works its way through the year 2003. You catch a glimpse into the life behind the icon. The writing style, while a tad envious, flows well and I even laughed a few times. It was an quick and enjoyable read. I recommend it to all foodies, especially if you love Jamie Oliver.

K- Karl Marx: Selected Writings in Sociology & Social Philosophy (Newly translated by T.B. Bottomore).  A review of Marx’s articles on sociology and philosophy that is eye opening for the reader.  His philosophies are intriguing like, “we don’t work because we are alive.  Rather we work to live” and my fave “all labour is forced whether by the whip or to earn money or to serve your god or to better yourself.  Every bit of labour is slavery to something.”  Not easy to read but worthwhile.  It is beyond me how communism formed out of his writings.

L- Let’s Roll! Ordinary People, Extraordinary Courage by Lisa Beamer with Ken Abraham. This is a powerful read.  It brings to light details about the oft overlooked aspect of 9/11, the first-time Americans fought back and won against terrorism.  It took me over a decade to come to this book.  I recommend this book if you want a bit of personal insight into the impact of the terror attacks on that fateful day to a simple American family.  While not a brilliantly written book, this book doesn’t have to be.  It is a book that highlights love, faith and family all entwined in the face of a terrorist attack.  It made me cry, it gave me hope, it is a solid book and I am proud we own it.

M- Money Management for the Creative Person by Les Silber. I first met Les at a book signing back in 2003 and he was so encouraging. I was contemplating my writing career but didn’t know where to start. He gave me this book and I read it the very next day. Creative people have not been known to be smart in the area of money management. In fact, we’d like nothing better than to have someone else handle it. This can lead to people taking advantage of artists and hijinks ensue. This book takes you step-by-step through a crash course in money management with the artist in mind. My favorite part of the book is where he talks about taking the “free” out of freelance. I highly recommend this book for all artists and creative people.

N- The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks. True love lasts forever, no matter how much time has passed. In The Notebook, Nicholas Sparks takes us on a beautiful roller coaster ride of emotions. Circumstances tore Allie and Noah apart. Yet, there was still love beating in their hearts, love for one another. Immediately, I was transported into the hearts of both Allie and Noah. The story flowed and I read the book in one sitting. When I read the last page, I cried because I didn’t want it to end.

A heart-wrenching novel by one of my favorite authors. This was the first book I read by Nicholas Sparks and at the time I read it, I was recently single. I thought to myself that love wasn’t in the cards for me. All that changed when I read this book.

This is one of the most romantic love stories I have read and I recommend it to everyone. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry and you’ll gasp in wonder at the miracle of love.

The movie didn’t do it justice. Read the book!

O- Over the Beach: The Air War in Vietnam by Zalin Grant.  A brilliant close-up look at the air war by a reporter who covered a fighter squadron (#162 USS Oriskany).  During the war and in post war interviews, he brings us an honest, open and realistic feel to a complicated, dangerous and often overlooked part of the Vietnam War.  Excellent book.

P- Perfect: The Inside Story of Baseball’s Sixteen Perfect Games by James Buckley Jr. This book is a brilliant chronological listing of every perfect game from the dawn of baseball to just before the turn of the 21st century.  Since the book was published there have been 4 more perfectos.  Every one of the first sixteen is retold in compelling fashion.  The reader really gets to appreciate that the perfect game isn’t simply about one man’s skill but about a moment in time that involves all 9 people on the field and one that rarely, RARELY ever happens.  Must read for a baseball fan.

Q- The Quintessential Encyclopedia of Drinks and Drinking by Frederick Martin. I must confess that the original title doesn’t have the word “quintessential” in it but it should. This book details every classic drink including how to make it and where it derived from. This book is invaluable, especially for those of us who love to entertain. Sure, it is probably out of print by now but if you can find it online or in a second hand bookstore, grab it without thinking twice! It’s a must own for any cocktail lover.

R- The Restless Sleep…Inside New York City’s Cold Case Squad by Stacy Horn. The compelling true story of the creation of the first cold case squad and how a small number of dedicated cops decided to work for those forgotten victims.  It has never been easy, fighting politics, budget cuts and the biggest enemy time…which fades memories, eliminates crime scenes and causes evidence to erode and disappear.  They don’t solve them all, they don’t catch everyone but they do catch a lot of them and they are doing God’s work, bringing closure and peace to the families of victims.  A powerful book that will illuminate anyone who has ever watched the CBS show based loosely on this office.

S- Second Helpings by Megan McCafferty. From the author who brought you Sloppy Firsts comes the next installment in the life of beloved Jessica Darling. It’s senior year and Jessica is distraught over everything. Her parents are hassling her to choose a college. Her best friend, Hope, is still in another state and then there is Marcus. Sigh. I’m always a little wary when it comes to a sequel to an incredible book. Can the author create another magical story or did she spend it all on the first book? Megan McCafferty did a fantastic job and I wasn’t disappointed. In fact (don’t tell anyone), I actually loved Second Helpings more than Sloppy Firsts. She took me back to my senior year and all the angst that came along. Such a delightful read!

T- True Compass – Edward M. Kennedy. A memoir truthfully it took me a very long time to finish this book.  The book is incredible. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in a great read.  A real classic.  I just changed careers and no longer had 3 hours a day to read on my commute so my reading time has been curtailed.  But that’s no shame on a superb read.  If you want to be invited deep inside the majesty of the Kennedy Clan through Senator Ted…this is the book.  Pointedly important right now is that Senator Kennedy had to run against Mitt Romney in Massachusetts and this book tells you all you need to know about Mitt Romney.  Allow me to quote directly for this is important and every American who is going to vote on the 6th needs to read this:

 

Ted Kennedy writes at the time of the first Senate Campaign televised debate in 1994.  “Our first televised debate at Faneuil Hall was in the final week of October.  With Romney’s poll lead decreasing and the truth of his job creation record in deep question, Mitt had realigned himself a little.  He’d moved away from his ‘businessman’ strategy and begun to campaign almost as a Liberal reformer.  I had begun to joke at rallies that I had heard of Flip and I had heard of Flop.  But with Mitt, it was flip-flop-flip!  He’s changed positions so often that if we gave him a little more time he’d be voting for me on Election Day”

That was Mitt in 1994 and that is Mitt today.  Fema? He changes his views on that more than the wind changes.

 

U- The Umpire Strikes Back by Ron Luciano and David Fisher. A terrific read written through the eyes of one of the most popular baseball umpires to ever be in the game.  He gives a funny yet honest peek into the life of a baseball umpire.  It is not as glamorous as one might think.  In fact, it is sad and often lonely.  A must read for any baseball fan!

V- The Vampire Sextette: Edited by Marvin Kaye. I picked up this book at a second hand bookstore with no expectations other than it had to deal with vampires. I’m a sucker for a good old-fashioned vampire story. None of the Twilight fluffy love kind of stories for me. I lust after something I can sink my teeth into. This book included six novellas by some of the best authors in the vampire genre (as of 2000). Each author stayed true to the Bram Stoker genre while adding their own little twist. My favorite story was Vanilla Blood by S. P. Somtow. If you love vampire stories, grab this book and maybe a clove of garlic or two.

W- The Wells of Hell by Graham Masterton.  A classic horror book written in the early 80’s that can still scare the crap out of a reader.  All about the thing that is going wrong with the well water in New England and exactly what is in the water and what is it doing to the people who drink it?  Hell may be a lot closer than people ever thought.  A great and scary book.

X- Xtra-Favorite Religious Book of all Time: The Religions of Man by Huston Smith. A thorough and academic overview of the seven world religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Islam, Judaism and Christianity).  It explains in very simplistic terms the basic beliefs of each religion and it amazes me how similar they are.  In many of these sacred texts, for instance, makes references to the Virgin Mary.  I thought it was really interesting and I wholly recommend this to every person out there.

Y- Year of the Hyenas by Brad Geagley. Imagine a murder mystery set in Ancient Egypt. Perfectly delicious, right? A detective named Semerket is called to investigate the death of a no-account elderly Theban princess. He starts to investigate and the authorities thwart his every move. The more he investigates the more secrets he discovers. It’s not about the princess at all, but about the Pharaoh Ramses III. Soon his life is in danger and he must choose between saving Egypt or himself. I loved Semerket and he reminded me of classic detectives from the 1930’s. He’s a no-nonsense dark character with hidden depths and a compulsion for the truth.   Filled with twists and turns I didn’t expect, this mystery is a must own for historical and suspense fans alike.

Z- The Bronx Zoo by Sparky Lyle and Peter Golenbock. Welcome to the 1978 Yankee team, where men were men and the brawls were televised. No one thought the 1978 Yankees were much of anything and they proved everyone wrong. One of the best baseball books of all time, Superstar Yankee Pitcher Sparky Lyle hits a homerun with this tell-all book. As a die-hard fan, I loved the way he pulled no punches. You get to witness it all from the players fighting to the team shake-ups. After reading this book, you’ll understand why playing for the Yankees is like camping out at The Bronx Zoo.