Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Book Blitz & Giveaway - FAEREST by Brianna Bennett

Faerest
Brianna Bennett
Publication date: November 10th 2020
Genres: Adult, Fairy Tales, Retelling

Mystery has surrounded Sydney White for as long as she can remember. Her mother’s death puzzled even the hardiest of investigators, but eventually, they just stopped trying. So, when Syd is presented with the opportunity to finish a degree in faery anthropology that her mother began over twenty years ago, she leaps at the chance to learn the truth. However, truth is often stranger than fiction, especially when the lines between faery and human are eroding each day. Syd will have to navigate unthinkable deals, a prince in peril she swore she would never speak to again, and an organization only known as Coventry.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

Strangely, she could still feel the careful caress of his skin on hers, which of course transitioned into other memories about their final night together. ‘No, we’re not going there.’ she told herself firmly, shaking her head as if that would knock the memories from her brain.

Once she fully came back to the present, she found that Sal had already chosen a track and the timekeeper was counting down. ‘Focus, Syd. Dinner is on the line.’ she told herself, the controller’s smooth plastic familiar and comforting.

Princess Peach, Syd’s favorite character, took off when she accelerated, cruising to the front of the pack efficiently.

She made use of all of the boosters, and she was lapping everyone else within minutes. ‘It feels good to get behind the wheel again, so to speak.’ She thought, and soon enough she found herself embracing the thrill of competition.

While Sal and Syd faced off, Jamie sat between them. Each time someone got ahead of Syd on the track, the lights would strobe ever so slightly, but as soon as she reclaimed first place, they stopped.

He glanced over at Sal and caught Sal looking at him out of the corner of his eye. Jamie’s mouth went dry, and he forced himself to focus on the game. Three rounds later, Syd shot up and cheered for her win.

“YES!” She looked down her nose haughtily at Sal. Jamie watched the scripted awards ceremony unfold, Princess Peach on the top tier, Bowser in second, and one of the computer-controlled racers in third.

“Looks like you’re buying dinner!” she crowed triumphantly.

“I can’t believe I just lost to a princess,” Sal said after a beat, and Syd smirked victoriously.

“There’s your first lesson in Mario Kart and in life: Never underestimate the princess.”

Author Bio:

Fanfiction was where it all began. It gave me the opportunity to stretch my creative muscles and work out crucial lessons in the craft. I spent several years writing for free, which helped me understand the realities of the writing world early on.

Once I got to college, I did the one thing that most advisors tell you not to do: I majored in what I was passionate about, not what would be most practical.

After graduating from college with a degree in Professional Writing, I took a year off and then enrolled in a double Master's program. In the 3 years that followed, I dedicated myself to learning as much as I could about all areas of writing and publishing.

Nowadays, I'm a medical receptionist, soon-to-be self-published author, Medium blogger, writing coach, and podcast host. I live and work in Philadelphia, PA, USA.

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Thursday, October 22, 2020

Book Review - New Release! FACETS OF POWER (Book #3 Dragon Portal series) by Jamie A. Waters

 

Facets of Power
Jamie A. Waters
(The Dragon Portal, #3)
Publication date: October 22nd 2020
Genres: Adult, Fantasy

The hardest stone protects the most precious gems…

Someone is killing dwarves.

Sabine is new to the city of Razadon, a mecca of stone and dwarven magic.

When several clan leaders are murdered in a strange ritual, suspicion falls on the most likely culprits and those newest to the city—Sabine and her companions.

The blood of the ancients can fracture even the strongest stone…

The seals of the Dragon Portal are growing weaker, and Sabine’s running out of time to acquire the remaining artifacts before their world is engulfed in flames.

It’s a race against the clock to find out who’s responsible for the murders and save her friend’s life. But deep within the heart of the mountain, there are some who will do anything to keep Sabine from learning the truth.

Even if it means sacrificing her in the process.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

Volack paused, glancing upward. His eyes widened, and he muttered a curse. “Double time, men! Make haste. That storm has a bad look about it. If it’s tied into whatever happened to Badac, we need to get to shelter now!”

They all increased their pace, heading faster up the path. Suddenly, the sun disappeared behind heavy cloud cover and the sky darkened to midnight. A cold wind filled the air, whipping Sabine’s hair away from her face and chilling her down to her bones. The ground trembled beneath their feet, and a low peal of thunder rumbled throughout the mountain.

Sabine looked over her shoulder and another flash of silvered lightning lit the sky. Dark hooded figures emerged from the dark clouds, riding atop creatures of nightmare. Silvery tentacles emerged from beneath the riders’ cloaks, while the eyes of their mounts glowed red with malice. It was the Wild Hunt, and she’d always believed the next time she saw them would be the last.

“Run!” Malek shouted. “They’re nearly upon us!”

The dwarves rushed up the mountain. Sabine grabbed Rika’s hand to keep her grounded while they ran. Malek pulled out his sword but kept pace with them while they raced ahead.

Rika stumbled in the darkness, pulling Sabine down with her. Sabine hit the ground, her palms biting into the sharp rocks and stones. Malek pulled both her and Rika to their feet.

“Sabine!” Bane roared, jerking against his captives to reach her. The dwarves shouted obscenities at him, pushing the demon onward.

“Go, Bane!” Sabine yelled, motioning for him to run. Rika was human and couldn’t hope to keep pace with them, but Sabine wasn’t about to abandon her charge.

“They’re here!” Blossom shrieked, clinging to Sabine’s neck. “You have to run, Sabine!”

“We won’t make it,” Rika said, choking on a sob. Sabine grabbed her hand again, but Malek scooped Rika up and threw her over his shoulder.

“Run, Sabine! Dammit, run! I’ve got her!”

Trusting Malek at his word, Sabine lowered her chin to her chest and ran for her life. Using the glowing crystals affixed to each of the archways as a beacon, she raced up the mountain path. Malek’s footsteps pounded on the stone behind her, while the rumble of thunder from the Hunt’s mounts became nearly deafening. The riders were nearly upon them, but Sabine couldn’t stop. The lightning strikes were coming faster, and Sabine’s markings began to flash in resonance.

My Review:

I absolutely LOVE this series! Jamie A. Waters has captured every emotion I could possibly have with this latest book in the Dragon Portal series. I laughed at the antics of Blossom the pixie, I smiled and chuckled at the way some of the dwarves were described and the way they talked, I got angry at what was happening to Bane, and I swooned... I mean REALLY SWOONED at the connection between Sabine and Malek! And I cried. Real tears streaming down my cheeks. So much emotion!!!

This series is written the way I love to see a series written. There is an end goal (which keeps me anxiously anticipating the next book in the series), but each book is written with a new adventure, a new location, and new allies to be made... without losing the main characters that stay clinging to my heart... and with each new adventure Sabine and Malek come closer to their end goal (or will they make it in time?) 

FACETS OF POWER takes us to the City of Razadon, a city hidden deep inside the crystal caves of a mountain, inhabited by dwarves and other magical creatures. The world building by this author is amazing, making the reader feel like they are right there. New characters are introduced including Dagmar, the talkative, energetic and tenacious young dwarf assigned to be Sabine's steward during her stay in Razadon. There is Astrid, the outspoken Councilwoman who was a former friend to Sabine's mother. And we meet Thetar, who is quite the character himself! We also see more of the young seer, Rika, in this book, who is accidently turned into part butterfly by Blossom due to the corrupted magic lurking in Razadon. And the best part of all, the part that sent chills up my spine, is that we learn a bit more about the Wild Hunt and the Huntsman himself. EEEEK!

I am so anxious to read the next book in this series and I see that Ms. Waters is already working on it. Please hurry! I need it now!


Author Bio:

Jamie A. Waters is an award-winning writer of science fiction and fantasy romance. Her first novel was a winner of the Readers' Favorite Award in Science Fiction/Fantasy Romance and the CIPA EVVY Award in Science Fiction.

Jamie currently resides in Florida with two neurotic dogs who enjoy stealing socks. When she's not pursuing her passion of writing, she's usually trying to learn new and interesting random things (like how to pick locks or use the self-cleaning feature of the oven without setting off the fire alarm). In her downtime, she enjoys reading on her Kindle, playing computer games, painting, or acting as a referee between the dragons and fairies currently at war inside her closet.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Bookbub


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Monday, October 19, 2020

Book Blitz & Giveaway - SOUL'S DAY BOXSET: Horror and Paranormal Halloween Theme

Soul’s Day Boxset: Horror and Paranormal Halloween Theme
Published by: Fire Quill Publishing
Publication date: October 20th 2020
Genres: Adult, Horror, Paranormal

Old Hallows Eve, when things go bump in the night,
Children come to play, and the witches provide the fright.
For 19 authors, USA Today and international bestselling,
The Halloween tales become more than this foretelling.
In the Soul’s Day Boxset, a mansion feeds on souls,
A gargoyle captures them, and a demon dungeon master makes the calls,
Campers gets picked off one by one,
The Karnaval’s corn dogs are less than fun,
Ghosts lurking around every bend,
‘I do’ at the wedding is the very end.
A boxset of chills and thrills to keep you up at night,
One-click pre-order to snap your copy filled with fright.
On old Hallow’s eve when creatures come to play,
With this spine chilling pages, it’s where you’ll want to stay.

AUTHOR LINE UP:

Erin Lee – USA TODAY BESTSELLING
Kristin Ping w/a Judith Holstrom – USA TODAY BESTSELLING
Amber Garr – AWARD AND INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING
Ashlee Sinn – AWARD AND INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING
L.L. Hunter – AWARD AND INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING
Monique Singleton – INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING
Majanka Verstraete – INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING
Aubrey Wynne – INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING
Stephanie Ayers – INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING
DM Wolfenden – INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING
Maggie Tideswell – INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING
Sian B. Claven – AWARD WINNING AUTHOR
Kayla Krantz
Yvette Bostic
Brandy Nacole
Jennifer Fish-Ferguson
Lea Cherry
Scarlet Le Clair

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Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Book Blitz & Giveaway - THE MAGIC INGREDIENT by Lindy Miller

The Magic Ingredient
Lindy Miller
(A Bar Harbor Holiday Novel)
Published by: Rosewind Books
Publication date: October 13th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

The end of summer is approaching, but even at the height of Bar Harbor’s tourist season, Eve Silver is having a hard time keeping enough money in the bank to sustain the family business. Her only hope of paying past due bills is to win the catering bid for the town’s upcoming Harvest Happening Festival. Otherwise, it’ll be lights out for Mount Desserts & Tea by Christmas.

Widower Jeff Parish is moving with his twelve-year-old daughter, Candy, from Manhattan to Maine with one goal: starting over. When sparks fly between Jeff and Eve as the town readies for the annual harvest festival, Candy wishes she had a love potion to help her dad fall in love again.

Will Eve be able to save Mount Desserts & Tea—and open her heart to Jeff—by the most bewitching night of the year? It’ll take a lot of love, a little bit of luck … and just a pinch of magic.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

Part of eating a cupcake was the experience, and in Eve’s opinion, a little extra frosting on your face made it all the more gratifying. Her mouth filled with the taste of vanilla, chocolate, and marshmallow, all of the flavors intermingling just as she’d planned. Still, something seemed off. It wasn’t enough to toss the batch out, but in Eve’s opinion, the recipe hadn’t quite reached perfection.

Eve swallowed, wiping away the frosting from her nose. “It’s not perfect.”

“It’s incredible,” Jeff countered before he shoved the rest of the cupcake into his mouth.

He had a dollop of frosting on his nose, which made Eve smile despite her frustration at the recipe. “I don’t know if I believe your verdict, but at least you didn’t call it glitzy.”

Jeff mumbled something that sounded like idtellinguidperfek around the mouthful of pastry.

“Something is missing. Something small, a flavor that isn’t quite there. It’s not major, but enough that I notice.” Eve wiped her hands on a dishcloth and leaned against the counter, crossing her arms over her chest in frustration. “I don’t know why I can’t get it right. Maybe I’m not as great a baker as I think I am. It shouldn’t take so many tries to get a recipe correct. Not if you know what you’re doing.”

Jeff wiped his face and leveled his gaze at Eve as he stepped closer. “I don’t think that’s true at all. You’re a fantastic baker. You’re a fantastic lot of things.”

He was so close now Eve could smell his scent—musky and warm, with notes of pine and sandalwood. An inviting smell. Eve wondered how she’d never noticed it before. Then again, the more she felt drawn to Jeff the more she’d tried to keep her distance, kind of like reaching her goal—one step forward, two back.

“Really?” she asked, hoping she sounded interested and not incredulous. She didn’t want to offend someone offering her a compliment, even if she didn’t believe it. “I try so hard and I feel like I come up short.”

“Doing everything on your own isn’t easy, and I can see how you might think that you’re failing, but you’re looking at the situation the wrong way.”

Eve shook her head and kept her eyes downcast, even when Jeff’s hand found her shoulder, sliding down to cup her upper arm. His touch sent a tingle down her flesh and she resisted the urge to look up.

“Is there another way?”

“Instead of focusing on what you’re not doing well, think of all the things you are amazing at. Try to see yourself as …”

He paused.

Eve wondered if he’d changed his mind about whatever it was he was going to say.

Jeff cleared his throat and started over. “Try to see yourself the way I see you. Like Candy does, and Doris and Annie. And Bapo, for what it’s worth.”

Eve snickered, despite herself. “You’re never going to get tired of ribbing him, are you?”

“Never.” Jeff’s hand slid further down her arm to rest on her elbow. “My point remains.”

The place where Jeff’s hand rested on her arm pulsed. “How do you all see me?”

“We see someone who works hard every single day, around the clock, never taking any time for herself. Who gives her all to everything she does, even when it seems impossible, and who makes everyone feel needed and wanted when she’s around simply by being there.” Jeff stepped in closer. His heat brushed up against her chest. “It isn’t about finding the perfect recipe for a new confection or keeping the family business around for another generation, Eve. It’s about you. You make Mount Desserts worth saving. And I believe in you. We all do, even if you don’t believe in yourself.”

When Eve finally looked up, she found herself staring into Jeff’s eyes. They were warmer and sweeter than any chocolate ganache she’d ever made.

His free hand found its way to her other elbow and she allowed herself to be drawn from the counter. Jeff pulled her into his embrace, his hands releasing her elbows to slide around the small of her back, holding her close.

There was no denying the butterflies now.


Author Bio:

Lindy Miller is an author of feel-good love stories that are full of sweet moments and happy endings. She believes the best time to fall in love is during the holidays, preferably over a cup of warm tea or a delicious vegan pastry - two things she can't get enough of.

A free spirit, Lindy loves to travel and has a soft spot for Bar Harbor, Maine though she grew up at home in the South. She is married to her childhood sweetheart and bakes as often as she can for her husband, son, and pets - especially her golden retriever, Finn, who has a tendency to show up in her stories (and her Instagram!)

Lindy is represented by Gandolfo Helin & Fountain Literary Management and supported by Smith Publicity.

Member Romantic Novelist Association (RNA).

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Monday, October 5, 2020

Book Blitz & Giveaway - FROZEN CRIMES (Disaster Crimes, #5) by Chrys Fey

Frozen Crimes
Chrys Fey
(Disaster Crimes, #5)
Published by: The Wild Rose Press
Publication date: September 30th 2020
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

Beth and Donovan are expecting their first child. Life couldn’t get any better…until a stalker makes his presence known. This person sends disturbing messages and unsettling items, but it isn’t long before his menacing goes too far.

Hoping for a peaceful Christmas, Donovan takes Beth to Michigan. Days into their trip, a winter storm named Nemesis moves in with the goal of burying the state. Snowdrifts surround their house, and the temperature drops below freezing.

Except, the storm isn’t the only nemesis they must face. Everyone’s lives are at stake—especially that of their unborn child. Will they survive, or will they become a frozen crime?


My Review

This is a book blitz, but I'm adding in my personal review of FROZEN CRIMES as well!

I have read each and every one of Chrys Fey's Disaster Crimes novels and I have to say that this was an AWESOME conclusion to an amazing series. Beth and Donovan are extremely likeable characters and the chemistry between them will melt your heart... although that's the only thing melting in FROZEN CRIMES. 

This book kept me on the edge of my seat and I had a really hard time putting it down. I hate to see the series end, but I think these characters have run out of bad luck and ready for some good luck to start. The entire series gets 5 stars (or wine glasses) from me!

My Rating



Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks

EXCERPT:

The crunch of the shovel pounding into the snow and ice filled his ears. It was all he could hear. The rest of the street was silent beneath its wintry blanket. Breathing was difficult with the icy air clogging his lungs. His nose burned. His throat was dry and on fire. But he ignored it, focusing on his task.

Crack, crack, crack.

He jabbed the shovel into a hunk of snow. On the third hit, it shattered into several pieces. He scooped them up and flung them to the side. He surveyed what remained. There was one big ball in the middle of the path that needed to be dealt with next. He moved over to it and struck it. That one impact had it severing in two. He was about to hit it again when something crashed into the back of his head.

Explosions of white light danced over his vision. Pain enveloped his skull. The shovel slipped from his fingers. Blackness cloaked his mind, coaxing him into its depths.

Beth. Her name was a whisper in his head, as if his thoughts were being sucked into a wormhole.

His legs collapsed under his weight.

Cold. It seeped into him, consuming him. And then his consciousness fled down that same void that ate his thoughts.

Author Bio:

Chrys Fey is author of the Disaster Crimes Series, a unique concept that blends disasters, crimes, and romance. She runs the Insecure Writer’s Support Group Book Club on Goodreads and edits for Dancing Lemur Press. https://www.chrysfey.com

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Saturday, October 3, 2020

Book Blitz & Giveaway - SNOWBALL'S CHRISTMAS by Kristen McKanagh

Snowball’s Christmas
Kristen McKanagh
Published by: Kensington
Publication date: September 29th 2020
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

The Purrfect holiday awaits…

Snowball–an aptly named bundle of feline fluff–is thankful to be spending her first Christmas in the comfort of Weber Haus, the Victorian B&B run by Miss Tilly. Emily Diemer, who cooks for the guests, dotes on Snowball, but she’s not thrilled about another new arrival at the B&B: Miss Tilly’s nephew, Lukas. Which is odd, because Snowball’s animal instincts tell her that Lukas and Emily should definitely be friends.

Everything Emily needs is in this quaint community–including, she hopes, the chance to open her own bakery one day. She doesn’t think much of Lukas for leaving his aging aunt to struggle while he jets around the world taking photographs. But now that he’s here, helping to spruce up the property and getting mixed up in Snowball’s antics, she begins to soften a little. Until she learns what he has planned…

Lukas is going to sell Weber Haus so that Miss Tilly can retire. But Snowball is certain that this B&B, and these people, are supposed to be her forever home. Somehow she has to get these stubborn humans to see things through the wisdom of a cat’s eye and a kitten’s loyal, loving heart…

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo / Google Play

EXCERPT:

At her car, her good mood took a back seat to frustration. The fob on her key chain was dying, which meant it didn’t always let her in right away. After four or five clicks, she finally gave a grr of annoyance and opened the door with the key.

“Wait.”

No mistaking the deep voice of the man from the parking lot. No way could he be talking to her, though, so she went to get in.

“Emily.”

He is talking to me.

Surprise tinged with more delight than she’d let herself acknowledge had her pausing to look over her shoulder. “How did you know my name?” she called as he jogged down the last few steps.

He waved back up at the slope. “That man called your name earlier.”

And he’d paid attention? Wow. A blush warmed the skin of her cheeks, making the sting of the cold air against her bite more. “Listen, I’m flattered and everything, but I’m running late.”

He paused on a word, mouth open, then his eyes crinkled as he grinned. “I’m not asking you out.”

Oh. Disappointment dropped over her like snow falling off branches on her head. Kerfloop. Followed swiftly by embarrassment. The heat crept back up her cheeks, but for a much less fun reason. “Okay . . . What can I help you with?”

“Actually, I’m here to help you.”

Help her? With what? She raised her eyebrows in question.

“I believe you’ve picked up a small passenger in your purse.”

“My—” Realization rushed in with all the subtlety of a blizzard, and she closed her eyes in resigned horror. “There’s a kitten in my purse. Isn’t there?”

She opened her eyes in time to catch the full impact of her stranger’s full-bodied laugh, his eyes alight with humor. “Does this happen to you often?” he asked.

“Only since this one arrived on our doorstep.” More gently than she’d been handling it until now, she swung her purse around and opened it wide. Sure enough, two blue eyes stared back at her with all the innocence of angels.

“Snowball. You’ve got to stop this,” she admonished as she lifted the small kitten out. Cuddling the ball of fluff against her chest, she lifted her gaze to her helpful stranger. Right in time to see him with a camera up to his eye. A soft click sounded as he snapped a picture.

“Uh— No, thanks.” She lifted a hand to block any more.

“I’m only getting the cat in the shot. I promise.”

Zero for two. First, he wasn’t chasing her down because he was interested, and now he only wanted pictures of the cat. My ego is going to need some chocolate therapy if this keeps up.

Author Bio:

Sweet contemporary and Amish romance author Kristen McKanagh grew up consuming books and exploring the world through her writing. She attempted to find a practical career by earning a degree in English Rhetoric (Technical Writing) and an MBA. However, she swiftly discovered that writing without imagination is not nearly as fun as writing with it. Kristen also writes award-winning steamy contemporary romance as Kadie Scott, and award-winning paranormal and YA fantasy romance as Abigail Owen. No matter the genre, she loves to write happily-ever-afters that shine with home, heart, and humor. Kristen currently resides in Austin, Texas, with her own swoon-worthy hero husband and their two children, who are growing up way too fast.

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Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Book Blitz & Giveaway - DEAD TO ME (Grave Talker, #1) by Annie Anderson

Dead to Me
Annie Anderson
(Grave Talker, #1)
Publication date: September 29th 2020
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy

There are only three rules in Darby Adler’s life.

One: Don’t talk to the dead in front of the living.
Two: Stay off the Arcane Bureau of Investigation’s radar.
Three: Don’t forget rules one and two.

With a murderer desperate for Darby’s attention and an ABI agent in town, things are about to get mighty interesting in Haunted Peak, TN.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

My life would be a lot easier if the dead in this town would just cooperate. Maybe it was the living. They never seemed to cooperate, either.

I hefted one eyelid by sheer force of will and spied the time on my alarm clock. That alarm clock was just for show. No one—not even me—used them much anymore. Lately, it was there so I didn’t have to look at the time on my phone. Said alarm clock was blinking 12:00 at me.

The power had gone out sometime since I’d fallen into bed. Figures. It didn’t matter that I lived in a nice neighborhood. Mother Nature was a testy woman on the best of days, but in the spring in this part of the country? She was downright spiteful.

The knock—well, more like pounding—on my front door rattled through my house again, which was what had woken me up from a very deep, much-needed sleep in the first damn place. I knew that insistent cop-knock. J was pounding on my door like the badge-wielding tool he was. Granted, I, too, had a badge, but I wasn’t the jerk accosting his door at oh-butt-thirty in the morning.

Groaning, I peeled myself from my oh-so-soft mattress and stomped to my door, yanking it open before J could splinter the wood.

“What?” Yeah, it came out more like a bark, but it wasn’t even dawn, and I was in no mood.

Instead of saying anything at all, J waved a to-go cup of coffee in my face as a peace offering. I fell on the caffeine-laden cup like a junkie, sucking down the brew like my life—or more accurately, J’s life—depended on it.

Only after the cup was half-drained did I let him pass the threshold into my living room. Shuffling past me, he plopped onto my overstuffed sofa like he owned it. He didn’t, but Jeremiah Cooper, AKA, J, was my best friend—hell, my only friend—and he’d spent many a morning, evening, and afternoon on that couch.

J wasn’t the only person sitting there, but he paid exactly zero attention to the slightly see-through dead man perched right next to him, lounging on the cushions like the Queen of Sheba. J—and everyone else in my life—couldn’t see him.

No one could.

No one but me.

Author Bio:

Annie Anderson is a military wife and United States Air Force veteran. Originally from Dallas, Texas, she is a southern girl at heart, but has lived all over the US and abroad. As soon as the military stops moving her family around, she'll settle on a state, but for now she enjoys being a nomad with her husband, two daughters, an old man of a dog, and a young pup that makes life... interesting.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Book Review - CHRISTMAS CHARMS by Teri Wilson

Title:  Christmas Charms
Author:  Teri Wilson
Genre:  Holiday Romance
Release Date:  October 6, 2020 
Available for Pre-Order Now!


About the Book:
She never dreamed her holiday would include her hometown, a dog, or a firefighter.
But a mysterious charm bracelet predicted it all…

Ashley’s supposed to be having the Christmas of her dreams. After four years of working at an upscale jewelry store in Manhattan, she’s finally going to get a little velvet box of her own—from her boyfriend Jeremy, who’s taking her on a romantic trip to Paris. What could go wrong?

Well, everything.

Ashley heads home to Owl Lake instead, falling asleep on the train ride there…and waking up with a beautiful antique charm bracelet on her wrist. Soon, she realizes that each silver charm predicts an event that happens in real life. What does this mean for her and Jeremy…or her and Aidan, her former high school boyfriend, who’s now a local firefighter? Is there still a chance that she could have the perfect Christmas?

This small town Christmas romance includes a free Hallmark original recipe for Spiced Walnut Crust Cookies with Chocolate Ganache and Sea Salt.

Buy Links: Amazon 
Release date: October 6th, 2020 - Available for Pre-Order Now!

My Review:
Even though I read this advance copy of Christmas Charms during the summertime heat in August, I was immediately engulfed in the Christmas spirit! Teri Wilson captured the pure essence of Christmas magic in this holiday novel about making your Christmas dreams come true.

When Ashley's boyfriend for the past three years, decides to whisk her away to Paris to spend Christmas with his family, and Ashley's best friend who works in the engagement ring department of one of New York's largest jewelry stores tells Ashley that Jeremy bought an engagement ring, what other explanation could there be? Of course she thought Jeremy was going to propose! Wait! What? The ring wasn't for her? He doesn't think people like them get married? Time for Ashley to drop this loser and head home to spend the holidays with her parents. But the train ride home brings her even more questions and surprises.

This book was such a delight! Thank you Hallmark Publishing and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review an Advance Reader Copy.

My Rating: 

About the Author:
Teri Wilson is a Publishers Weekly bestselling author of heartwarming, whimsical contemporary romance. Three of Teri's books have been adapted into Hallmark Channel Original Movies by Crown Media, including UNLEASHING MR. DARCY (plus its sequel MARRYING MR. DARCY), THE ART OF US and NORTHERN LIGHTS OF CHRISTMAS, based on her book SLEIGH BELL SWEETHEARTS. She is also a recipient of the prestigious RITA Award for excellence in romantic fiction for her novel THE BACHELOR'S BABY SURPRISE. Teri has a major weakness for cute animals, pretty dresses and Audrey Hepburn films, and she loves following the British royal family. Visit her at www.teriwilson.net or on Twitter @TeriWilsonauthr.

Monday, September 21, 2020

Book Review - A HEARTFELT CHRISTMAS PROMISE by Nancy Naigle

Title: A Heartfelt Christmas Promise
Author: Nancy Naigle
Genre: Holiday Romance
Release Date: September 29, 2020
Available for Pre-order Now!

About the Book:
A perfect gift that captures the spirit of the season, USA Today bestselling author Nancy Naigle’s A Heartfelt Christmas Promise celebrates the holidays, small-town traditions, and the generosity of love between two lost souls who find everything they ever wanted in each other.

Vanessa Larkin was supposed to be spending Christmas in Paris, France on a business trip she hoped to enjoy as a working vacation. Instead, she’s been assigned to Fraser Hills, North Carolina—home of the Best Fruitcake in the USA—to convert her company’s property into warehouse space and shut down Porter’s, the fruitcake factory. Offering retirement packages and selling locals on new job opportunities may not spread holiday cheer, but Vanessa believes she’s helping secure the town’s future.

Mike Marshall’s family founded Porter’s. For decades, the factory served as the lifeblood of the community until his grandfather sold the business to a Chicago corporation. The sale cost the town its independence—and the Marshalls their family ties. A horse farmer, Mike was never involved with his grandfather’s company, but still felt Fraser Hills lost part of its identity. And as a widower raising a teenage daughter, he’s suffered enough losses in one lifetime. News of the factory’s closing means losing another piece of the town’s legacy.

Far from the skyscrapers and rapid pace of the city, Vanessa finds herself enjoying the easygoing rhythms of rural living. With Mike as her guide, she learns to appreciate the simple pleasures found in shared holiday festivities among friends. Fraser Hills is a town she is growing to love—and Mike is someone she is falling in love with. Now all Vanessa needs is a Christmas miracle to give her newfound friends and home a gift they’ll cherish for many New Years to come.
Buy Links: Amazon 
Available for Pre-Order
Release Date September 29, 2020

My Review:

Although the story started out like a typical Hallmark movie with the female MC being part of a big corporation, and the male MC being Mr. Good Guy in Small Town USA, it soon grew to be so much more. Nancy Naigle created a story with undercurrents of how a young girl with a brain for business should not be shoved aside. Vanessa listened to Misty's ideas and incorporated them into the Fruitcake production business. She also brought out the importance of family and the joy of a more simple life in a small town. Ms. Naigle's descriptions of the falling snow, the little shops in the town, the puppy who kept sneaking away and the sweet carriage house, made me feel like it was Christmas in the mountains of North Carolina, even though I was reading this in August in Florida.

This was a wonderful Christmas feel-good novel. Although I didn't feel many of those romantic tingles between Vanessa and Mike, the story was super good and well deserving of 5 stars.

I received an ARC from the author and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts, opinions and ratings are my own.

My Rating:

About the Author:
USA Today bestselling author Nancy Naigle whips up small-town love stories with a dash of suspense and a whole lot of heart. She began her popular contemporary romance series, Adams Grove, while juggling a successful career in finance and life on a seventy-six-acre farm. She went on to produce works in collaboration with other authors, including the hilarious southern fiction G Team series. A Romance Writers of America Honor Roll author, her books have been translated in multiple languages and received favorable reviews from major trade journals.

In 2018, Crown Media brought two of Nancy's novels to life. Christmas Joy premiered on Hallmark Channel 11/3/18. Hope at Christmas premiered on Hallmark Movies and Mysteries. She also novelized two Hallmark Original Movies set in the town of Evergreen, bringing the whole story and bonus epilogues to Hallmark fans.

Now happily retired from a career in the financial industry, she devotes her time to writing, antiquing, and horseback riding with friends. A Virginia girl at heart, Nancy now calls North Carolina home.

Download a complete list of Nancy's books at www.NancyNaigle.com, then stay up to date with future releases by joining Nancy's free newsletter -or-visit her on facebook and twitter (@nancynaigle)



Monday, September 14, 2020

Book Blitz & Giveaway - THE CAPTIVE KING (Royal States #3) by Susan Copperfield

The Captive King
Susan Copperfield
(Royal States #3)
Publication date: February 12th 2018
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy

In the Royal States of America, magic rules all, but life—and love—always finds a way.

At the Texas Charity Auction, money can buy anything, and Summer Cassidy is under orders to take advantage of the opportunity. While she believes the marital collar once worn by an Aztec queen belongs in a museum, it’s up to her to sell the priceless treasure to one of the elite in attendance.

Meeting Bachelor #103, a man who finds her descriptions of human sacrifice charming rather than appalling, hadn’t been part of her plans. Buying his company for a quarter hadn’t been part of her plans, either.

One coffee date, a dinner, and a curse later, Summer’s catapulted across the Royal States on an adventure that will forever change her life, alter the course of an entire kingdom, and give her a chance to earn a love capable of defying even death.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

EXCERPT:

How had I gotten saddled with attending the Texas charity auction? I wanted to return to my tent in Mexico and hide, but no. Someone from the Nahua dig team at Joya de Ballesteros had to convince some overly wealthy, braindead elite to part with his money, and by virtue of being the only intern with tits, I’d gotten the job.

Hell, I was the only woman at Site C, and most of the team wasn’t sure what to think about that. The ones who weren’t busy trying to get into my pants blamed me for each and every disruption.

After the first time I’d buried a would-be assaulter neck deep in dirt, they’d kept their harassment verbal so history wouldn’t repeat itself.

If I wanted my doctorate, I needed to shut the hell up, sell the damned jade Nahua marital collar for top dollar, and deal with the humiliation of being the only unmasked attendee at a bloody masquerade ball.

I wished I was wearing something other than muddy cargo pants with pockets full of digging tools.

A little warning would’ve been nice.

“The last time a woman attended an auction looking like she’d just come in from the fields, she charmed herself a king,” a man murmured behind me.

The last thing I needed was to be compared to the talk of the entire auction, the future wife of Montana’s king. I scowled, clutching the polished wooden box containing the jade necklace to my chest. “I was at a temple, not a field.”

A field would’ve been a lot nicer; in some ways, I appreciated the respite from the smothering jungle humidity and the incessant attention of thirsty mosquitos.

“A temple? Were they having a mud-wrestling competition?”

I bit the bullet and turned to face him. He wore a suit like every other man present at the auction, although his was navy rather than the standard black. Unlike everyone else, he wore a plain black mask, just enough to cover his face so he couldn’t be readily identified. I found his lack of feathers, gemstones, and trappings reassuring.

He was either like me—a goose stuck among swans—or he was an elite with no fucks left to give about what anyone thought of him.

Author Bio:

Susan Copperfield is the royal romance, urban fantasy loving alter ego of award-winning & USA Today bestselling novelist RJ Blain.

Under the super not-so-secret identity of Susan, the Royal States of America is explored, where the work of sixteen founding royal families preserved the United States from destruction and civil war when magic swept over the world.

In the Royal States, life, love, and magic always finds a way.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Instagram / Newsletter


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Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Book Review - BURYING THE HONEYSUCKLE GIRLS by Emily Carpenter

Title:  Burying the Honeysuckle Girls
Author:  Emily Carpenter
Genre:  Suspense
Release Date:  April 26, 2016 


About the Book:
Althea Bell is still heartbroken by her mother’s tragic, premature death—and tormented by the last, frantic words she whispered into young Althea’s ear: Wait for her. For the honeysuckle girl. She’ll find you, I think, but if she doesn’t, you find her.
Adrift ever since, Althea is now fresh out of rehab and returning to her family home in Mobile, Alabama, determined to reconnect with her estranged, ailing father. While Althea doesn’t expect him, or her politically ambitious brother, to welcome her with open arms, she’s not prepared for the chilling revelation of a grim, long-buried family secret. Fragile and desperate, Althea escapes with an old flame to uncover the truth about her lineage. Drawn deeper into her ancestors’ lives, Althea begins to unearth their disturbing history…and the part she’s meant to play in it.
Gripping and visceral, this unforgettable debut delves straight into the heart of dark family secrets and into one woman’s emotional journey to save herself from a sinister inheritance.

Buy Links: Amazon 
Note: As of the date of this review, Burying the Honeysuckle Girls is available on Kindle Unlimited

My Review:
Although this book is described as "Occult Suspense - Ghost Suspense", it does not involve the occult or ghosts. But it is definitely suspenseful!

Honestly, I have mixed feelings about this book. I had a difficult time putting it down and I found myself deeply engrossed with the story. The ending, however, left me feeling a bit flat. The story kept eluding to something mystical or magical, but instead it a huge dose of realism. 

If you are deeply troubled reading about drug addiction and domestic abuse, this is not the book for you. But if you enjoy reading about the deep south and generations of families and how their lives have changed, or not changed, over the years, or if you enjoy reading a book that really pulls you in, then this one is for you.

My Rating: 

About the Author:
EMILY CARPENTER, a former actor, producer, screenwriter, and behind-the-scenes soap opera assistant, graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Auburn University. Born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama, she now lives in Georgia with her family. You can visit Emily online at emilycarpenterauthor.com.

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Book Blitz & Giveaway - THE CROW KING (Wintervale, #1) by M.H. Woodscourt


The Crow King
M. H. Woodscourt
(Wintervale, #1)
Publication date: September 1st 2020
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Magic is against the law. He must use it anyway.
The Crow King has outlawed magic. Despite the kingdom’s edict, Gwyn plunges into the ancient and deadly True Wood to find a magical cure for his dying brother. Within the shadowed realm, he must fend off more than violent and fallen fae-like Ilidreth when he learns the king is out to stop him at whatever cost.
On his desperate quest, he is joined by a unicorn, a quirky girl, and the maddest of the fallen fae. Together they must outrun enchanted crows and enemy armies, and face the ghosts of a shattered age, all while racing to save Gwyn’s brother. Meanwhile, war brews between countries, and a secret order of mages hunts Gwyn down.
Yet none of this can prepare Gwyn for the harrowing truth behind the fall of the Ilidreth long, long ago, and what it means for his life and his homeland.
EXCERPT:
Mist curled over the quiet hills of Vinwen. Somewhere a bird trilled, prophesying the coming dawn, and the sun answered with a ring of gold spilling over the horizon as it peeked at the slumbering world. Lazy clouds drifted by, grey, dappled with faint pinks and yellows.
Sitting on the wooden fence, Gwynter ren Terare squinted against the hovering gloom in the valley below, eyes fixed on the road. He strained for any sound beyond the faint chirrup of crickets, the song of birds, the gush of the nearby stream. A crow cawed as it landed on the fence.
There. Just there. A faint neigh. The rattle of a wheel against a stray stone. A cracking whip. Gwyn shoved against the rough wood post, leapt to his feet atop the fence, and wobbled once before he caught his balance. Perched, he soon made out the distant shape of the coming carriage, a single lantern bobbing to pierce the predawn shadows.
Gwyn grinned and jumped from the fence. The crow screamed and flew off. Gwyn loped along the streambank up toward the manor house. His shoulder-length hair flounced in his eyes, but he ignored it as he cut through a protesting gaggle of geese and threw himself against the kitchen door to stumble inside.
“Mercy, child!” cried Mavell, spoon in hand. “You look a sight. What awful trouble could there be so early as this?”
Gwyn shook his head as he gasped for air, leaning forward, hands on his legs. He gulped a few times before he could utter a word. “Lawen’s coming. Almost here. Down the road a bit.” He straightened and headed for a bucket of water on the table, took up a ladle, and helped himself to a long, cool drink.
The cook grabbed the ladle, poured water into a cup, and handed that to Gwyn. “Master Lawen, already? Surely not. He’s not to come until tomorrow, so his letter said.”
Gwyn drained the cup. He held it out to let Mavell ladle him another. “But he’s always early. I had a feeling to watch for him, and here he comes.”
“And how do you know it’s Master Lawen?”
Gwyn smiled. “I always know.”
She pursed her lips but didn’t argue. There seemed no point, they both knew that.
“Well,” the slender woman said, rubbing her hands against her apron. “If it is Master Lawen, oughtn’t you go off and clean yourself up for his arrival? Your mother will have a fit if you greet him looking like a shepherd’s boy.” She swatted Gwyn’s backside with the ladle. “Off with you, go on.”
Gwyn chuckled and trotted out of the kitchen and into a long gallery. His feet echoed against the flagstones. He cast a glance out the windows to find that full dawn had banished grey in favor of a thousand shades of green and brilliant gold. He could hear the geese and chickens griping and dogs barking as the carriage rolled along the private drive leading to the house. Gwyn thought he heard the crunch of gravel and his heart leapt.
Lawen! Home, at last. How long had it been? A year or longer. Mount Vinwen had felt hollow in his absence, though none of the others appeared to notice.
Gwyn reached his room, brushed off his trousers to dislodge any dirt or wood splinters, and changed his coarse shirt for fine woven linen. He slipped on stockings, yanked on a pair of polished boots, then caught his hair in a ponytail. A last inspection in his mirror. Gwyn awarded himself a curt, militaristic nod. He tugged one last time on his long shirt front, wrapped his belt atop it, clicked his heels, and headed downstairs.
In the main vestibule he found the rest of the ren Terares assembled, even Mother, though her lips pressed tight and her eyebrows arched above eyes sharp as needles. She turned toward Gwyn as he reached the bottom of the sweeping staircase and her gaze softened.
“Gwyn, dearheart. Thank you for not looking like a peasant this morning.”
He kissed her cheeks. “Good morning, Mother. I thought this occasion warranted the change.”
She sighed. “Yes, I suppose the master is home today.”
Gwyn brushed off her tone, not willing to let it seep in. He could understand her resentment in a way. Last year Tynveer ren Terare, Gwyn and Lawen’s blood father, had been killed in a skirmish against the savage Ilidreth. Now Lawen was the master of Mount Vinwen, and Mother, Tynveer’s second wife after Lawen’s mother had passed, now suspected her stepson would soon send her and her three children to live at another of his estates, but Gwyn knew better. There was no kinder soul in all Simaerin than his elder half-brother.
The sound of crunching gravel outside the front doors ceased as the carriage bounced to a stop. Gwyn’s younger sisters laughed and tumbled forward as the servants pulled the manor doors aside to admit the Master of Vinwen.


Author Bio:
Writer of fantasy, magic weaver, dragon rider! Having spent the past 20 years devotedly writing fantasy, it's safe to say M. H. Woodscourt is now more fae than human.
Her published titles include The Crow King, book one of her YA/High Fantasy Wintervale series, A Liar in Paradise and Key of Paradise of her YA/Portal Fantasy Paradise series, as well as October Cove, an Urban Fantasy novella.
All of her fantasy worlds connect with each other in a broad Universe, forged with love, sadism, and no small measure of blood, sweat, and tears. When she's not writing, she's napping or reading a book with a mug of hot cocoa close at hand.

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